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Review:800 words of heaven says:
Hello! Here with your requested review, like a month and a half late, as usual! Also, I'm up to chapter seven already? Time flies when you're reading and reviewing a good story!

Okay, so first paragraph in, and I'm already feeling sorry for abandoning my review page for so long. I temporarily forgot how well you set the scene. Also, why did Rosier assume the girl was a muggleborn? Was it because she was eager? Because let me tell you, muggleborn or not, I reckon I'd be pretty excited to see Honeydukes for the first time. Or did he just mean it as an insult?

I had a bit of a chuckle that the Death Eaters chose the Hog's Head as the place to do Death Eater-esque things, simply because in OotP, it was used for the exact opposite purpose. However, it does seem to be a popular place for the Hogwarts students to go and organise secret clubs!

On another note, thinking about Mr and Mrs Black arguing over Mr Black's liking for firewhiskey was a nice touch. It was an unexpected moment of domesticity that really added something a little mundane to the picture, which I thought helped to ground it overall.

Oh, I love the way Regulus and Wilkes are reacting to their first taste of firewhiskey! It's just such a nice and subtle reminder that they're two rather young boys, trying to hang out with other dudes who seem to be a lot cooler than them.

So you specifically asked about my impressions of the Death Eater boys, and I think you've done really well! You've managed to hit that balance between the naivety which comes with being young and eager, with the sort of ruthlessness and complete focus that you associate with the more experienced and hardened of the Death Eaters. You can really see the seeds being sowed which lead to them becoming what we see of them in canon.

I'm not sure if I've mentioned this before, but is Lily always so... nice and polite? For some reason, her characterisation always strikes me as a little flat. I always feel more invested in Regulus' story for some reason, and he's a far more relatable character for me. This might just be me - I don't know, but I'm assuming that you've received some feedback on your two characters, and you can judge for yourself which of the two your readers seem to prefer! But yeah, Lily is weird for me. Sorry for not being a bit more eloquent or elaborate about that!

Severus, on the other hand, is very well written. It feels as if you know the inside of his head better, and can write exactly what he'll say and do. Because he doesn't actually talk that much, the way you describe his body language is very important, and I think you do an excellent job with it. Out of all of the characters in your main cast, to me, it seems that you have a handle on Severus the best.

Oh, my goodness! Peter said "you can trust me"?!?!?! Ironic foreshadowing, or what?

As always, a wonderful chapter!

Author's Response: Hey, no worries :) Happy to hear from you!

He pretty much meant it as an insult, as if wizarding folk were used to this sort of thing and it was stupid to get so worked up over it, and also a comment on the difference between his age and hers. I'm like you; I'd be nothing short of stoked to get to visit Hogsmeade no matter how many times I had been there before :)

Yeah, the Hog's Head is a fairly seedy place, but I did think it would be interesting for Rosier and company to think it was a good spot without knowing who Aberforth was. I didn't quite hit on that irony when writing this, and now I can totally see what you mean!

You know, I read a lot of stories where students are drinking Firewhisky like it's no big deal, but the stuff sounds pretty strong and bitter to me, even more so than the Muggle version. I wanted to use the drink as a vehicle to show that Regulus and Wilkes are a bit out of their depth here; they're not the hardened young men they pretend to be. It's great to hear that the pre-Death Eaters (and Rosier) feel in character in this chapter.

People do seem to gravitate to Regulus a bit more, perhaps because he is more flawed and also because he's not used in fic all that often. I think I unconsciously write myself into a lot of my characters, and I'm sort of a peacemaker type, so perhaps Lily's endless politeness comes from that part of me. I'm sorry you aren't a big fan of her right now, but I do think she starts to come apart a bit later on and maybe you'll like her more when she's less polished. I may stop by and re-request next time you have open spots, and I would definitely be curious to know if your perception of her changes in the later chapters.

I do think I'm becoming a lot more comfortable with Severus, and he's my favorite so I'm happy that you feel like I've done a good job with him. I try to put some emphasis on body language since you don't get that all the time in fic, and it's great to hear that you think that's coming across.

Yes, a bit of foreshadowing there :)

Thanks for your lovely review!

-Amanda


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