Tag! I've heard this on HPPC, naturally I had to come review it on the archives too, because your writing style is just too pretty to pass up. :)
Oh my gosh, this is one of the most heart-wrenching stories. Draco's sadness is so tangible, and there's a whole lot of emotion communicated in such a short span of time.
I do want to add, thanks to listening to this on Harry Potter Podcast, I totally hear Julia's voice while reading this.
I love how you utilized your given title, "Come with Me" throughout the story, as it really tied everything together. The way you alternate between Catherine telling Draco to "Come with me" and Draco hearing the same words within his own mind shows how fully Catherine has infiltrated his mind, to the point that he hears her in everything.
I also think you utilized your "single spell" extremely well. I think the parallel between the spell killing Catherine and what he plans to do work excellently, and it really shows how attached Draco was to Catherine.
The description in this is gorgeous. It's sparse (which it really has to be, given the length), but really rich too. For example:
"His insides cringe as the words echo in his head. He stares into the darkness, hoping for it to swallow him. He wants to drown in it, to bury deep under it."
This is so effective, and really kind of gives off that hopelessness that Draco is feeling.
"Flashes of his father's blows flicker in front of his eyes. He thinks he should have been used to pain by now."
I've always felt like Lucius would be an abusive father, and you manage to throw that in there very succinctly, and it really shows that Draco already knows suffering, and that this is just so much worse.
"She has always called out to him. She has always led him down the right path. She has always shown him the best for him, and today she is showing him a way out of his anguish and guilt."
Wow, Another really deep and impactful line. It shows how much of an influence she has had on him, and how it has really changed him for the better, but now he feels empty without it. It pairs perfectly with the "Come with me"s, because now the line becomes so much more literal as she actually wants him to join him.
Speaking of which, Catherine is so realistic, that at times I almost feel like she is in the room with Draco, personified as a ghost.
Your flashbacks are so excellently placed. I feel like flashbacks can easily end up making the story disjointed, but in your case, it actually adds to the flow of the story, which I absolutely love. In one-shots especially, flashbacks are so important in order to establish a backstory, since your word count is so constricted.
I really can't find anything to CC on. I thought it flowed nicely and really gave off some strong emotions.
Overall, I thought this was absolutely gorgeous and I loved being able to both listen to and read it! Keep up the good work!
Author's Response: Hey! Thank you for this amazing review! Apologies for the delay in responding!
Aw, my writing style is pretty? thanks!
I am glad that you felt that the emotion was communicated well as that was my aim.
Haha Julia's voice is awesome.
I contemplated long and hard on how to incorporate "Come with me" and when it hit me I felt it was such a brilliant idea that I couldn't pass it up, so its great to know you liked it.
I always found Avada Kedavra to be a cruel curse and wanted to show its implications specifically and this provided me with the chance so I am pleased you liked how I did it!
OMG you've made my day by quoting me the descriptive parts. I love when people quote in reviews, thank you!
I am flattered that the hopelessness Draco felt came through my words. I always felt that Lucius would be an abusive father too so I included that small detail. It definitely makes it worse, yeah.
I had to express Catherine's influence on Draco's life in very few words in this one-shot so I tried my best, and it's great to see that you think I did it well with that sentence there. Also, I am glad you found it to go well with "come with me"s.
Catherine is realistic? That's the biggest compliment ever, thank you!
I was worried too that the flashbacks will disrupt the flow but I am so relieved to hear that you think they added to the story flow here. Indeed, they're important.
Thank you so much for all your lovely comments. I am pleased that you found it to flow nicely and liked the emotional intensity. I love podcasts too, they really bring a story to life!
Once again, a BIG THANK YOU!!