|Review:||teh tarik says:|
Jenna! Hello! I actually read this chapter a couple of days ago, but haven't found the time to review it until now.
Goodness, where do I begin with this chapter? There's so many amazing things in this chapter. The afterlife parts of this story continue to intrigue me, and now I'm really, really curious about those demon children. Bathilda feeding them her own breakfast was such a surprising gesture; I'm kind of wondering if indeed they're as terrifying as she imagines them to be, or if they're something else entirely. And I love how her routines remain the same even in the afterlife; I'm imagining that her present state of the afterlife isn't the most exciting of situations, and that she survives by sticking to her lonely old routines and writing her story.
Mrs Prewett is indeed quite an unsettling figure. I suspect, just as Bathilda suspects, that Mrs Prewett had begun to guess the nature of her daughter's relationship with Bathilda. It's terrifying imagining her livid as she was at the end, when Muriel pretty much confirmed her suspicions. I love the unsettling effect Mrs Prewett has over Bathilda, even when she's showing the latter around her house. And ahh, Muriel! You've portrayed her gossipy self so well here; it's just something she would do, pester Bathilda for all the dirty details about the Dumbledores. It sounds like there's nothing that she likes better than hearing about others' not so spotless reputations! There are other lovely touches to Muriel's characterisation as well: in particular, the way she seems so gleeful at the tragic ending to the Moon Maiden's tale (I love that story, by the way; I always love stories about myths).
And again, I love how tender and light-hearted the girls are with each other when they're in private; there were some wonderfully fluffy moments there in the gardens, but even then, there's always that sense of unease that things aren't going to end well. And I love your descriptions of the moon in the sky; it's a constant reminder of the awful story about the Maiden, and perhaps a persistent indicator that Muriel and Bathilda's relationship are going to end badly as well. Bathilda's rage at the end when she received that letter was similar to the Sun Chevalier's scorching anger. Honestly, I was nearly shouting at my screen, "Oi, give it a chance!" especially when I got to that part with Muriel about to leave home after all. IF ONLY. If only Bathilda had just...I dunno...delayed writing that letter for a few hours. :( :(
I love your feministic messages in this story, by the way! From the chapter title, to the masculine rage of the sun, and how Bathilda is interested in the Moon Maiden's artist who dressed like a man so she could have a chance with her work - and I think it's a lovely touch that Bathilda dresses in a more informal style with smock and slacks in the afterlife, compared to all those dresses of the early twentieth century. You've captured this aspect of history very well, and the effects of the prevailing patriarchal society on women and on a same-sex relationship between women. Your Bathilda/Muriel ship and the social perceptions of such a relationship are in keeping with historical context, and I really applaud you for this. Lovely writing, there!
And bahaha! I think I know what Bathilda saw when she went to her great-nephew's room: she saw my OTP, Albus/Gellert. ♥ I can only imagine her vast shock at that! I think the unhappy end of the boys' relationship and Ariana's death has been haunting Bathilda for quite a bit, perhaps to the point that she wonders if her own relationship with Muriel will have a bad end as well. And as for Gellert Grindelwald, I have to squee a bit there because alskfjlacimf that's EXACTLY how I see him!! In those few sentences you have about him, you've captured his character marvellously, the whole feigning of shame thing: he's so unreadable and it's hard to tell whether he's being sincere or not.
And, that creature in the west window is not Nagini, is it? :P It doesn't sound very snakelike, but I just remembered that Bathilda had an awful death in DH. :O
Anyway, apologies for letting this review grow so out of hand! Fabulous chapter, Jenna! I love this, and I do hope you'll be able to get your final chapter in before the deadline! ♥
Author's Response: Hi teh! :)
Ahh, monster review! ♥ This was amazing, thanks so much for taking the time to leave all these thoughtful observations! I'm glad you're liking the afterlife and the demon children, as it is both very simple yet rather unclear and complex at the same time. I'm afraid that not quite everything gets explained in the last chapter! Yes, Bathilda is very much in limbo right now and her life (or afterlife) is a little monotonous.
I'm glad you found her unsettling! Yes, Mrs. Prewett was very perceptive. I imagined her being a stronger character than Bathilda really sees her as - she's too caught up in her own problems to think about the limitations of the life Mrs. Prewett has had to lead. Haha, I'm glad you like gossipy Muriel! :) She has some nasty attributes which surface on occasion and which are quite fun to write. I'm so glad you like the moon maiden story as well! It was very interesting tying it into the story.
Aw, you've characterized their relationship so well - they're very adorable, but there is a slight danger to their relationship which they can't ignore. Yay, you picked up on the moon references! :D I wasn't sure if they were too subtle or not so I'm really glad you noticed and what the implications could be. Ahh, I know, it's such an unfortunate chain of coincidence and circumstances that led to them splitting up. Of course it had to happen because of canon but I felt a little frustrated with them. But of course, a big part of both their characters is that they won't fight for what they truly want, they're too frightened.
I'm so excited you pointed out all the feminist touches! I really enjoyed weaving those through and imagining how Bathilda, an early feminist figure, might see the world and fit within it. Patriarchy is one of those unavoidable things about writing historical fics, unfortunately, but this story gave me a chance to explore it in this context. I'm really pleased you liked it!
Hahaha, your OTP being witnessed is a very good guess. :P Of course, Bathilda is too proper to describe what she saw, and she can't really say anyway. I thought that due to her connection to those events and being a bystander for them they would disturb and worry her, and it does seem to foreshadow her and Muriel. I'm so glad you liked Gellert as well, yay! :D He's such a shady character as you said and I imagine him always talking in riddles and mystery.
She did have an awful death! :( Well, you'll find out next chapter! :) Hehe.
This review was amazing! :D Thank you so much for all the lovely comments. The next chapter should, if all goes well, be validated very soon! :) Thank you! ♥