Hey there - stopping by for our review swap! :) I'm so so glad you posted that, since I can't believe I didn't spot this story before and so it's a perfect excuse to leave off studying Tort Law and read this :P (Not that I needed much persuading, tbh)
So, I was incredibly, incredibly curious about this even if just for the fact that it's a Bathilda/Muriel, which is one of those pairings I've never come across before, or even heard of, yet seems somehow like it could work quite well, despite the age gap there would have to be between them.
I love your characterisations of Bathilda and Muriel. I love how Bathilda is sort of like a hoarder, of information of things she's interested in, perhaps even of secrets. I dunno, I just get the impression that she's sort of like a kind of well of information, you know, things go in and they don't come out. It's brilliant! I love Muriel, too, how I can really see how she turns into the woman we know from canon - with the horrible shrill voice, barking orders at people, and so on. She's younger here, obviously, and perhaps a bit more innocent and naive, and less 'I know everything', but still enjoying a good gossip - which seems so integral to her character!
I love the way you write this, as well, with the different sections, where Bathilda and Muriel are younger, and then later when Bathilda is older, and the strange woman (I dunno who she is... Rita Skeeter? Or a more mythical figure, like the actual Moon Maiden or something? I don't know the story behind the moon maiden, though, if there is one, so... *shrug*). The differences between the two sections are so clear, but at the same time the style is the same and the writing just as beautiful :) I really love how incoherent the older Bathilda sections seem - almost like she's not even sure what's going on, and it's such a brilliant quality to manage to evoke in writing - I have no idea how you did it. It's amazing.
Your writing is gorgeous. Seriously. It's just flawless. Everything flows so perfectly, and it's almost poetic in the way you've written it. I found it oddly ironic/clever how Bathilda seems to refer to her living as 'her heaven', but there are 'demon children' outside and things like that... I just love the juxtaposition of the two things :)
So yeah, I love this. I will definitely be back, and have yourself a favourite in the meantime ;)
Author's Response: Hi Aph! :) Ah, I'm so excited you came to read this! Hehe, always glad to provide an excuse for not studying. :P
I'm glad you found the pairing interesting! It sort of occurred to me while I was re-reading DH and I knew about teh's challenge so this was the perfect excuse to write it. I did play with the ages a little bit by making Bathilda younger than she might have been, but logically it sort of fit as JK seemed to have written her as like 140 by the time Harry came along. :P
I'm so glad you like them! Yes, ah, that's just how I saw Bathilda! :D She loves learning and writing and translating history for other people. It's wonderful to know you thought Muriel fit with canon. She was just so obnoxious and hilarious in canon, and here I hoped she'd have the basis of that rather selfish and judgemental nature. Writing her love for gossip was so fun!
I'm really happy to hear you liked the structure and the different scenes as well. I had a lot of fun imagining the afterlife scenes especially. The moon maiden story is something I made up, but then I googled it and apparently there is some story called the moon maiden which has a similar-ish concept... well, sort of. :P I love your comments about how the story felt incoherent and scrambled for the older Bathilda - that's just the mindframe I was in when I wrote it, as if things shift into existence and go from being clear to confusing really quickly, so it's lovely that you picked up on that.
Wow, thanks so much! ♥ I'm so honoured you like the writing style! :D It's never really specified whether Bathilda is alive or dead, in heaven or in... that other place which is not 12+. So I'm glad you like the contrasts and the juxtapositions. I had so much fun writing this and no idea how readers might react so it's so lovely getting your feedback.
Thanks so much for the amazing review, dear! :D