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Review:Leonore says:
Poor Lily! Especially having to put up with having Alison in the same dormitory. And over-enthusiastic Lucinda. You've got a good character for Lily - she feels really that she has to live up to her own expectations. Many of her friends would be pleased to get an E at OWL at all, and she'd worried she only scraped it. And convinced that she's going to fail.

She's having a really bad day, probably something that's been building up for a while. She can't concentrate - giving up and slamming the book shut - and she's doubting whether she made the right decisions earlier. Not just doubting herself, but doubting McGonagall. Convinced she's been underestimated.

And then she wants to get away, or at least have a bit of sympathy, and she ends up stuck with her friends who don't care how she feels. I love the way Lucinda is over the top, exaggerating even in her mind. And very innocent, not suspecting anything even at such a surprising move. The opposite of Alison, who sees the worst in people and doesn't care (unlike Lily) for trying to be nice to her friends. So Lily's not only worrying about work but having to keep the peace. It fits her character perfectly that even feeling like she does she's trying not to show it.

Alison is the unpleasant girl who doesn't care for other people's feelings. Lily is trying to be nice to her, but as is natural she gives up and snaps half way through - not to defend herself but to protect Lucinda. Lily's a character I have trouble with because there's so little about her, but I love your interpretation of her.

The verbs you use for Lucinda are well chosen - "swooned" and "whined" - suggesting that irritating childishness. And she's so eager to help that she doesn't stop to consider whether she's really helping. I think a lot of us can relate to her.

But despite everything, Lily doesn't break down and get really upset. She's strong, but also under a lot of stress. The kind of character I feel I understand, and I love the way you have such a good picture.They feel like real people, with problems we all understand. A lovely change from most of the stuff I read, which tends to be rather darker.


Author's Response: Hi Leonore! I am really sorry about how long it has taken me to respond to your reviews!

I'm glad you thought Lily's character was good. She is often portrayed as a student who excels at all subjects and finds the work easy etc but I think she would have had at least one subject that she struggled with - no-one is good at everything! It's good to hear that you loved my interpretation of Lily :D

She is having a bad day here - exam pressure is getting to her. It does seem like she is stuck with friends who don't care how she feels, they do care really they just each have their own issues to deal with at the moment and they are used to Lily getting like this at exam time ;)

Alison isn't usually quite as grumpy and mean as she was here, something has upset her... I'm glad you thought the verbs used for Lucinda were well chosen :)

It is really good to hear that the characters felt like real people and that you found this chapter to be a lovely change from what you usually read :)

Haronione ♥

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