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Review:nott theodore says:
I don't even have words to express what I felt when I read the ending to this story. Just... wow. I'm really amazed by your writing and by the shocking ending. I'm going to try and write a coherent review for this chapter, but it might be difficult!

I loved the way that the chess theme returned in this chapter, since we hadn't seen it much since chapter one, but I thought it helped tie the ends of the story together well. I've been questioning who is actually in the role of Romeo and Juliet for a while in this story, but this chapter confirmed the roles that Rose and Scorpius took, with the idea of the queen in chess threaded through the chapter too. It was so effective and it's such an original and refreshing portrayal of these characters and I've loved reading this story!

One aspect that I thought was great in this chapter was that we got to see Rose's family play more of a role, which is also something we haven't seen a lot of since the first chapter. Obviously Hugo has been there all the way through, but here we got to see Hermione and Ron both mentioned, as well as Albus and James. The relationship between Rose and her parents was really intriguing; she seems to think that she didn't love him before he died, and yet his memory still seems to be something that's precious and important to her. She and Hermione have also grown apart to the point that there doesn't even seem to be a relationship between them. Rose actually reminds me of Hermione before she became friends with Ron and Harry, but all of her worst traits have been mixed with Ron's worst traits and amplified to create this cruel and manipulative character. It's fascinating to read about her; I have a feeling that if she'd used her talents for the right reasons then she could have made a big difference, but instead she uses them for her own ends.

Hugo's death came as a real shock to me here. I wonder whether, if he hadn't died, Rose and Scorpius would have run away together as had been planned, and I don't think they would have done. Scorpius, while believing he loved Rose, did care for her more through the story, came to realise that what he felt wasn't love. But throughout the time when Rose went to find Hugo I felt nervous and I could sense that something was going to happen, although right until the end I couldn't tell what. Hugo's death seemed to represent the death of innocence in the story - he reminded of the characters in Shakespeare tragedies that we're always upset to hear have died - Cordelia in Lear, for example.

As well as Hugo dying, I was surprised to see Rose kill Scorpius. I knew that there would be some death and tragedy in this chapter but when you mentioned that they would both be killed if Scorpius had been followed then I thought that maybe outside forces would have killed them, rather than Rose or Scorpius being responsible. I liked the fact that Rose had a motive for it and showed her loyalty to Hugo with killing Scorpius. The fact that Scorpius didn't kill Hugo adds to the tragedy of the story and reminds me of Shakespeare plays.

I thought you used the different influences you've mentioned for this story brilliantly. I could see elements from each of them in your writing and I think that helped to enhance it even more. The semblance of love between Rose and Scorpius does remind me of the relationship between Cathy and Heathcliff, which is enough to destroy both of them in the end. The way that you wrote the ending, with the bodies being found by some of the more minor characters, and Rose having disappeared, reminded me of the ends to Shakespearean tragedies too. It fitted really well with the style you've used throughout the story and I think it made the ending more shocking, because the reader had to see the events struggling to sink in for the characters like Hermione, and we hear the news at the same time as they do.

This was a really fantastic story and I'm so glad I got the chance to read some of your amazing writing. I'll definitely be reading more of your work in the future!

Sian :)

Author's Response: Thank you again for the fabulous reviews! This one has been particularly challenging to respond to, so my apologies for taking this long to offer my response. It means a lot that you took the time to read and review this story so thoroughly.

I've enjoyed following your thoughts about this story as you've read it, especially because I think you really "got" the story. You've caught on to many of its significant aspects such as the characterization of Rose. What you've said about her here is what I was hoping readers would see in regard to her character - she is the sum of her parents' worst traits. It's perfectly plausible, though oddly few writers take that interpretation, instead constructing Rose in a more positive light. But you're so right that she embodies her father's jealous tendencies and impulsiveness as well as her mother's so-called bossiness and standoffish-ness. You're equally correct in saying that Rose could have turned out differently - there was always the potential for her to do great things, but there must be some little point somewhere in her life - even something seemingly insignificant - that turned her onto this path. Oddly enough, this aligns Rose with Snape - another character with the potential for good, but it's hard to tell whether something triggered his negative behaviour or whether he just always had a chip on his shoulder. Rose was very distant from me while I was writing - her motives were never quite clear, and I have very little idea of her backstory - but I like the idea of leaving it up in the air. It means that I get wonderful interpretations like yours. :D

I'm glad that you also caught the chess references. Being able to bring a story full-circle is something I like to do - although the characters' stories continue, there has to be a way of showing that this particular part of it has been resolved. Bringing back clues from the beginning somehow enhances the feeling of closure.

It's fantastic to hear that you liked how the influences informed the structure of the story, as well as its characters. In this chapter, the Shakespearean influence is strongest because I wanted the story to end like one of his tragedies, deaths everywhere, mostly upsetting, and that all-important conclusion where this moral leader comes forward to express horror. Hermione here takes on the role of the Prince (more gender-bending - and who else is a more morally-driven character than Hermione?), nut in this case, she's more involved in this tragedy. She's at once an outsider, unable to understand why it happened, and yet it's her own children who are at the centre of it. When the events sink in for her, as you've said, it truly is horrifying - a murdered son and the murderer daughter who avenged him. In this way, the story became more than just a romance between two star-crossed lovers - how will this world rebuild itself again? What is left for the wizarding world when it has fallen into such a state?

Rambling over. Thank you again for your reviews! They've been a joy to receive and respond to!

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