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Review:SilentConfession says:
Hello again!

I think that you've started fleshing Draco so much more in this chapter. He's beginning to feel a lot more real and rounded. What I think helped this was the dream he had. As I said in my first review, my sympathy for Draco isn't too big as most of this is his own mess. I'm pleased he's making an effort to change though, but I don't feel massively sorry for him. Anyway, the dream bit helped give us an idea of where he stood even during the war. I think there are a couple different ways you can take Draco and the impression I'm taking from this is that you're taking him along the lines that he sees his part in the war as regret and that is actually was in error? That's what i've taken from this and if that was your intention than I think you've done a really good job at creating an atmosphere for that. The dream was so vivid and i think it dipped really deeply into Draco's subconscious and his thoughts of how following Voldemort didn't bring the power anyone thought it would. It just brought more death. I can't even get over that scene. It was so brilliant and so gruesome. I feel like those two words shouldn't belong together, but in this case they have to. It was so well done.

I didn't think he seemed too eager when he was talking to Narcissa. I liked how he was still leaning on his old training about not thinking before answering. That little bit was really poignant because it gave an idea of how much each person didn't really matter in Voldemort's circle. He wanted puppets and Draco made a good puppet for so long. It will be interesting to read how Draco overcomes this and becomes a better man. What i'd be interested as well to see is how much he stays on this path. It would only not be believable if there weren't any obstacles for him to overcome, or relapses. Typically recovering addicts will relapse and I can only imagine this happening to someone like Draco as a> he isn't the strongest of people b> he's gone through a lot of trauma which have scarred him. I think both things together are tough to overcome and as long as you keep exploring that I think it would remain believable.

I do wonder about Draco a little at this point. I feel like if I continue reading it'll be clearer of where he stands as I get the impression this is going to be a very complex story. However, with his character it has seemed in the books that he does believe that he's better than muggleborns because of his blood. I think perhaps he began questioning whether it was worth his life, but i'm not sure if I buy that he thought it was wrong and i don't think it ever fully left him that muggleborns weren't proper magical. I think the word i'm looking for is entitlement. Saying that, I do like where you're going with this, i'm just curious to know more about him and if his part with the DE's was just survival or something more. The scene at the cafe really helped with that though and explored some of his struggles at becoming better or toning down his own sense of entitlement if he's to survive post war. I also think it makes sense that he's worried about his reputation. That always seem to be an important thing to him at Hogwarts.

I like Horatio. I think his explanation made sense, even if he was a bit naive about the whole thing. I liked some of his comments about the puppet king and the like, but it made him seem like he had no idea what actually happened in the war. Which will make it interesting down the road when things begin to pick up between Astoria and Draco and when Draco probably tries to explain what it was like to be in that circle and the pressure that he had to face.

Anyway, this is turning out to be an essay of a review. I'm so sorry, but there is so much to analyze with this chapter and so many questions. This is a really good thing though and you've done brilliantly with this chapter. I've really enjoyed it.

Author's Response: Hi, there!

I'm glad that Draco started to come to life a bit more for you in this chapter. The first one was meant to show him at rock bottom, so he was necessarily a bit overdone, I think. Here you start to see some of the reasons why he was such a mess in chapter 1. He's haunted by a lot of the things he saw and took part in during the war. Dealing with the risk of dying on a daily basis left him with bad anger management issues and depression. You're correct that he came to realize that it wouldn't have been a good thing if Voldemort had won the war. It's hard for him to square that with the fact that he spent nearly his entire life believing that the Dark Lord was "the right side".

I'm glad the conversation with Narcissa didn't seem overdone. She really becomes his biggest supporter, aside from Astoria, so it's important that their relationship seems genuine. Draco will definitely experience a few setbacks along the way. Much more on this to come.

Draco still has a lot of that prejudice and arrogance in him. He does still believe in the superiority of pure magical blood. That's part of what attracts him to Astoria. But, he's also realized that some beliefs aren't worth fighting and dying for. In the course of this story, I hope that I never stray into that place where Draco starts to seem "redeemed". He did some terrible things, both before and during the war, and he still holds some fairly odious beliefs. He is a very complex character.

Horatio doesn't understand the real power structure within the Death Eaters because he was never a part of the organization. He only has an outsider's perspective combined with what he was told by the Ministry. Horatio doesn't understand powerful dark wizards, he understands money. Therefore he undervalues the importance of the former and overvalues the importance of the latter.

I really enjoyed your review, so please don't ever worry about the length of them. It's always a pleasure and I'm really glad that you enjoyed the chapter. Thanks for reading and reviewing!

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