I love this story. I only started reading it and it's predecessor with the posting of the last chapter, so please forgive the lack of previous reviews - I'll go back and do them when I get a chance.
While waiting for an update, I re-read the last chapter over and over. I loved it. So well done was the revelation of the marriage to Draco. And it was such a fitting start to the beginning of the conclusion to the story. Things will naturally start to wrap up from here. Rose is happy and married; Scorpius told his dad; Rose doesn't care if her dad knows; they'll spend Chrissy in her old home (England) then back to their life together in the US.
Until I read this chapter.
Skipping to the end - when I was reading the last few paragraphs I had the same thought you voiced in your A/N - there is so much more to go.
So much more drama ...
... angst ...
... STORY !!!
OK, calming breaths, lets do this in order.
Rose with Hugo and the baby. A nice little scene, Hugo's going to be a good dad which is pleasing to see after the rocky start he had to his dad-hood. I cannot say the same about the relationship between the parents. He's sleeping on the couch not her bed. She's going to work, he's looking after the baby. The Hugo/Lexi story has been burning away in the background I truly don't know where it will end up. Hmm, more plot to come.
It has lent a bit of frisson to Roses's home life (England home that is) beyond the tension with her dad. In this respect it has helped Rose's character by not being the only disappointment to her parents. It has been a balancing weight on her psyche, otherwise she just might tip too far into the darkness that surrounds her decision in choosing Scorpius over her father.
And this decision is brought to the forefront in this chapter, that's for sure. We see the vectors of the decision from nearly every angle. Alluded to by Rose and Hugo it's first real ramification is brought up by Vivian to Scorpius.
Vivian is a good character to have in this drama. I can't say I really like her, but that's the point. She is not there to be liked, but to stir the plot, which she does with almost malicious glee. That you've made her even remotely sympathetic is a triumph of characterisation on your part. She is not a villain per se, but she is definitely not on Roses's side.
"Be honest did you marry her so soon because you were scared she'd run again." There it is spelt out and in the open. From his reaction he had considered it even if only in passing. Blast - I hadn't thought about this aspect. I was getting into the married-now-happily-ever-after-except-for-a-few-little-aftershocks. Vivian is actually trying to be a good friend to Scorpius - trying to get him to think about and think through some of the ramifications.
It's enough for now that it's percolating in the back of his mind. He distracts them both with talk of her new beau. Who could it be - to be revealed at a latter date (I have my suspicions). So some more plot to come.
So the two lovers head to lunch ...
across the road from the ministry ...
where a certain Red-headed, estranged father works.
Scorpius what were you thinking?
Oh right you weren't thinking, your mind has been trapped by Vivian's words. By voicing the vague unformed fears, by putting them into words that is now all he can hear. "Recently Scorpius' greatest fear ... enough to actually listen." how telling, especially in the light of what happens at the end of the chapter.
Rose bolts, but Ron, to his credit, pursues her. Now we see the ramifications through her eyes. Her initial resolve starts to wither in the presence of the object itself - when confronted she wants both, acceptance and reconciliation.
He says 'I'm trying' which is a bit of a slap in the face and snaps Rose somewhat back to reality. "No you're not" says Rose. He isn't where it counts, ie to her and not just inside his head.
Her mum makes some overtures of peace, it's not her problem, it's Rons and she's just caught up in it. The wedding band is revealed and Ron ... walks away again, no emotional response, just a trite congrats. Do you ever want a relationship with your only daughter?
Rose vents and cries but it helps her resolve. It wasn't a mistake to exclude him but she has missed him. She sees only love in Scorpius - nothing that her father sees is true.
Unfortunately for Scorpius, most of this happens inside Rose's head. She is probably the furthest she's ever been from running from him. She tries to tell him "You know this changes nothing about how I feel for you?". But he doesn't believe it until he comes back to find her asleep, clutching his picture taken in their love's first blooming. She won't leave him, it was wrong to doubt; everything's going to be fine.
Then he intercepts the letter from her father.
Shock. Stunned disbelief. What he dreaded is coming to pass.
And he HIDES THE LETTER !?
no, No, NO !
give it to her, you must, you have to. Now is the right time, while her resolve is at it's strongest, while she is with you on your home ground. If you delay, especially if she finds it , or worse finds you've hidden it from her ... didn't you learn anything from the hiding of the Lexi situation from her?
Of course that's what's going to happen *sigh*
It is a dramatic narrative after all, and for that to reach it's fullest potential you have to have some drama.
But *sob* they were so happy just a chapter ago, come on EarthsTrueGreen cut a brother some slack *crying* just let them be happy. *wiping away the tears*
I was thinking the very thing before I read your end note - there is so much plot left to happen. So even though *sob* things may get worse before they get better *sob* it means there is still a lot of this story to go. Which can only be a good thing - the more of this excellent story I have the privilege of reading the happier I'll be.
Author's Response: First I wanted to say sorry it has taken me so long to respond. Yeah I was starting to realize in the last chapter that it was starting to sound more like an ending than a climax of a story.
I think Hugo is going to be a great dad. I don't think he ever meant to mess up Lexie/Scorpius lives back when all of that stuff first happened. But I think he is glad that he does have his daughter. That story has been burning in the background, that was the one downside to moving the characters to New York, the rest of the crew are in England. Making it hard to show what's going on in their lives. I don't think that Rose's parents are disappointed in Hugo, I think they are more disappointed that he didn't tell them until Lexie was about eight months pregnant, I'm sorry that it bomb shock to anyone. I will agree though that Rose's decision has been brought to much more of a relevant meaning in this chapter. It is easy to live with it when your thousands of miles away, but not when you are so close to home.
I love Vivian because I don't care if people hate her. When I first started writing her in FT I never thought/planned that she would be so valuable to me. I did want to show that she had grown up some so unlike when she was a teenager, she tends to be more of the voice of reason now she brings a bit of reality to the situations.
As for Scorpius, I don't think he could be hurt so badly and then not have actually considered the fact that he married her so that she couldn't run. Don't get me wrong he loves her more than anything, but Rose can be hard and at times impossible, they could have very easily become a couple who stays engaged for twenty years but never actually gets married. So for her to be so willing to go ahead and do, yeah Scorpius took his chance when he had it, regardless of if his insecurities were resolved or not. These two still have many problems that they have yet to talk about and at the end of the day until Scorpius decides to forgive her for hurting him so badly all those years ago, he is never going to be able to fully trust her, which is a problem.
I would love to hear your suspicions on who Vivian's new guy is.
Scorpius mind is going to be out of it for a while. Obviously he is not thinking at all by then end of the chapter. All he is thinking is that his life is exactly the way it should be, and he is scared to give Rose the room to change that. Ron has been doing some thinking since Rose basically told him to shove off. They both want a reconciliation, but Ron knows what he has to do in order to get that. Hermione has just learned to stay out of it when it comes to Ron and Rose. I'm not going to lie Ron's reaction to the wedding band could be taken two ways it is a shock to any parent to see their daughter scared to tell them something, and that is what Ron saw. But you will get more on that later.
I think Rose being upset over this is natural, unfortunately natural scares the daylights out of Scorpius. Your right Rose is the farthest from running from him, she is firmly set in staying with him. But there is only so much she can do. Seeing Rose with that picture was reassurance for Scorpius and in that moment he felt that he was wrong to ever doubt her, but that letter and the temptation that he believes it might actually offer to Rose, it is literally his worst fear. So he hid it, not that it is the right thing to do but can you blame him the last time that Rose got a letter from her dad about their relationship she broke up with him and moved to Brazil and he didn't see her for basically six years. Is he justified in his actions because he know better than anyone what kind of power a letter can have. There is a lot of plot left to go.
Thank you so much for your long review, I loved it and I look forward to your other reviews when you get around to them. Thanks for reading and I hope that you enjoy the rest of the story.