Hey there - stopping by again with your requested review! I was so glad when I saw you'd re-requested, because I really do like this story.
I love your characterisation of Merissa, and how she's leaving home and getting an owl and going to Hogwarts and making her first new friends. I liked how she and her friends are all from different backgrounds, with different experiences - I'll be interested to see how you develop that further later on :)
The plot is ticking along really nicely - I like how, though you didn't include her going to Diagon Alley to buy her things, you had her pop by to get an owl on the journey, which let us see her reaction to the alley. I would have preferred mention of her wand as well, perhaps, since the wand chooses the wizard, after all, so it would be a little difficult for her wand to be bought without her there, but it's not that big a deal!
Also I really like Widow Bellum as a character. I like that she's a witch as well, and Merissa doesn't find that all that strange, and how she's sort of taking Merissa under her wing, so to speak and helping her.
A couple of things quickly: I do feel you need more description. Just... what clothes is she wearing? Is she wearing her school robes when she leaves, does she change at some point? What is Widow Bellum wearing? What colours/sights/smells/sounds does she experience in the alley? What do the people there look like/what are they wearing? What does she in the courtyard? What are the people there dressed like? What does she think of it? I think if you included more description, it would fill it out a bit more and help put the reader in Merissa's place, you know?
Also, I'd have liked an explanation for where the name of her owl came from. Ignatia is a good name for an owl, sounds a bit wizardy too, but I'd like to know where it came from. Is it from a relative? Someone she read about in a textbook or other book? It seems a little random to have the name suddenly come up with no explanation.
I like how the plot is progressing, though, and the detail you have in this is fantastic. The second years (maybe prefects would be better? Like an additional prefect duty? It would make more sense than second years, who perhaps aren't so trustworthy) helping the new students out of the carriages and showing them where to go, the carriages themselves, the Sorting Ceremony itself, the feast, the little mention of Ollivander... it was all so lovely :)
I'm really enjoying this so far and I really don't want you to feel disheartened by my comments, I just want to help you improve because you can write, and this is great, just you need a little tweak here or there ;) But yeah, I'm really enjoying reading this - feel free to re-request! :)
Author's Response: Thank you very much!
She hasn't gotten her wand yet. My thought is that the roads can make it more difficult to travel the long distances so instead of getting the wand before school starts, the wand maker comes to the school the very first day of classes to get the first years their wand.
Thank you for pointing out the need for more description. I have added in the notes so I can add the details.
I will make the change from the second years helping to the prefects helping. That does make more sense. I think I might increase the number of prefects for each year also.
I like this feedback. Having feedback like this helps me become a better writer.
Thank you very much!