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Review:nott theodore says:
Hi darling! I've wanted to read this story for ages and I took the chance when I saw you on review tag!

Your writing here... wow. It's hard to know what to say about it; it's so beautiful and I'm so impressed and amazed after reading this chapter. You definitely should be proud of this story! The description is brilliant - it's always one of your strengths in writing but here I feel like you've used it to your best advantage. The pictures that you painted in my mind were so vivid, and the description and imagery applied not only to the landscape but the people as well. I could see all of it as if I was watching a film or something - it's really brought the story of the Pied Piper to life for me.

The whole narrative has this wonderful lyrical quality to it, which fits so well with a retelling of a fairy tale. The moments when you addressed the reader were fantastic. It put me in mind of some of the more old-fashioned writers who speak through the story to the reader, and it works so well in this sort of story. I could imagine the way that it might have been told orally, around a fire in the evening. It's amazing that you're able to convey that sort of storytelling in fanfiction.

Also, I love the way that you've chosen to relocate Hamlin to England and slot it in with the events in the Founders era. It works so well, and I love the set-up that you've got with Hogwarts just beginning and Stephane going to Hamlin as the Piper. The inclusion of all the names we know from canon - Peverell, Bones, Pettigrew, Jorkins (can I just say I love you for that?) - help cement the story into that time period really well.

The details that you've included are really great as well, and it almost reads like a piece of historical fiction as well as a fairy tale. I actually enjoy reading all the different theories for the origins behind fairy tales, and I liked the allusions to them here, with the plague in the town and the possibility of the magical population migrating and escaping the Muggle prejudice. I could see that things like this might have been the start of people fearing witches and wizards (both in history and in Harry Potter). Especially if many of the wizards weren't suffering the same way as the Muggles, you can see that Muggles might have become suspicious. I liked the way you wrote the councillors, with the seedy sort of corruption in their meeting.

I'm intrigued to see where you'll take this next, with Stephane arriving as the Piper and taking the children away to the school. I wonder if they'll try and get revenge on the Muggles too; I have a feeling they might, since Hamlin no longer stands. I'm worried about Blind Johnny and Trip too, because if you follow the traditional tale then they won't make it to Hogwarts, and I already really want them to!

Sian :)

Author's Response: Hi lovely! Sorry for taking so long (as always) to reply to your amazing review! This story is so special to me, and I always love getting your thoughtful feedback. It's so helpful and rewarding, and I'm glad review tag gave you an excuse to get here! :)

Ah, I'm glad you thought the imagery and description was powerful. If it created an image in your head, that is such high praise and exactly what I was going for when writing it. I think writing in third person and having a more detached narrator gave me the chance to really go to town on the descriptions, and it was so much fun to imagine and put into words.

I'm glad you liked the "lyrical" voice and how the story is a little less typical and more old-fashioned. I definitely wanted to convey the idea of being told a story, not just reading about one. Another reviewer said something similar about being told the story around a fire, and I love that idea! It fits well with the theme and mystery of the story.

When I was throwing around ideas for how to write from the prompt of the Pied Piper it just seemed perfect as an excuse to tie in with the Founders. With stories like this, which are set in the past, I think it's important to tie in really strongly with canon, since this is a Harry Potter fan site after all. I'm glad you liked the Founders, it was really enjoyable interpreting their personalities into flesh and blood (well... ink and computer screen) people. And of course a Jorkins had to make an appearance! :)

Okay, you saying that it fit as historical fiction makes me extremely happy. I wrote mostly off prior research and imagination, and while it is an idealized version of the middle ages, I'm pleased some details fit as historical. I really wanted to tie in theories and concepts which are prevalent in modern day HP, like the prejudice against Muggleborns, and Hamlin as kind of a stirring place for that prejudice.

Yay, concerns! I'll be replying to your next review as soon as I get a chance. Thank you so much for this gem of a review, my dear! :D

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