|Review:||Violet Gryfindor says:|
This chapter is excellent, though that's no surprise at all. It was great to come back to this story because I know it's going to pique my curiosity and also be really well-put together. Your style flows wonderfully and is easy to read, giving me the chance to focus on the characters and the twists and turns of the plot. :D
Wow, that ending! Thank you for writing a creepy, rather disturbing Snape - and I mean that sincerely because fanfiction portrayals of him can be polarizing, but in canon, he has these two sides to his personality that are equally important to his characterization. I've always wondered if that darker side was always there, instilled by his father's abuse and his mother's heritage, and under the influence of his Slytherin peers, it came to fruition. How much could Lily actually help him overcome that darkness? Perhaps she's always seen it, or felt it, and that's why she's so unwilling to make things up with him. It's a darkness that she doesn't see in James, and for some reason, I don't even think she sees it in Regulus - why else would she be able to speak with him so freely?
I like how you've painted Regulus as a different kind of Slytherin from the other future Death Eaters - he's more of the upper class, cunning type who will happily manipulate people to get what he wants, but he's not violent or malicious. He has a heart, and his desperation to connect with his brother and to help Snape reconnect with Lily reveals... something. Is it sincerity? Is it that he hates loneliness? There's still an enigmatic aspect to him, and I want to see more of him to try and figure it out. He's so fascinating and complicated, yet sympathetic in his own strange way.
I don't know if I've told you this already, but it's really refreshing to have a Marauder story that focuses on Regulus and shows more a complete picture of what's going on during those years at Hogwarts. You don't let Lily or the Marauders, or even Snape, take centre stage - instead you show a bit from each of your characters in turn and each of these pieces contributes to the story as a whole. I'm not sure if I'm describing it correctly. The multiple perspectives make this story more interesting to follow, and you're careful not to overlap things so that the story moves steadily forward. It must be a challenge to keep track of these characters, their development, their relationships, and the plot all at the same time, and I commend you for doing so in a seemingly effortless way.
There's nothing here I can think of to critique. It's a very well-written chapter with excellent characterization and plot development - there's nothing more I could ask for in a novel-length story. Amazing work! :D
Author's Response: Hi Susan, thanks for stopping by again!
Yeah, I think Severus has this double whammy of a likely abusive household and serious poverty, which puts him at a disadvantage compared to a lot of his fellow students in Slytherin, particularly the pure-bloods. He's got a lot of the ingredients necessary to foster a sense of darkness inside, and I think that combined with his intellect and desire for acceptance it's really a perfect storm. Now that you bring it up, it kind of makes me wonder if he could ever have overcome it, even if Lily had chosen him or other things in his life had gone better. It seems that the changes would need to be drastic. I also agree that James and Regulus don't seem to share that inner turmoil.
Hah, I think Regulus and I are still trying to figure Regulus out, too. He's reaching for acceptance and trying to cling to the people he loves while also searching for a niche in which to fall. His struggle to figure out what he wants to do with his life is a big part of the chapter I'm currently writing for this story.
I really love the idea of playing with multiple points of view while still keeping that sort of third person flavor. It mixes up the chapters and allows people to get updates on different characters in whom they become interested. I think it's become part of my "style" as a writer and I'll probably continue to use it in the future. It's great to hear that you feel like it works :)
Thank you so much for this lovely review!