|Review:||teh tarik says:|
Hello again, Jenna! AT LAST I'm here to review your final chapter of your very lovely challenge entry. OK, first I must say that this chapter was absolutely squeeworthy aaslkdjvms. Somehow, I thought that there wouldn't be a very happy ending - maybe it's because I've read most of the other challenge entries, and while their ships are just as interesting, many of them end in misery and tragedy. So I'm really happy to see something different here!
Ah, have I mentioned that I love your Bathilda very much? I love her even more in this chapter, and the great lengths you've gone to write her life in detail - her dedication to her writing, her associations with the rest of the wizarding world; it makes a whole lot of sense, the life you've given her. I get the sense that, with Bathilda, she feels she's unable to change the world and social views of women, and women in same-sex relationships. But this doesn't stop her from doing her best to make a name for herself out in the publishing world, for writing her way into such a profession. I love the references to her projects here and there, and her clear feminist activism. That being said, while she achieves so much with her writing, there's that inescapable hollowness that she can't elude - and it's so sad that she actually does have the opportunity to change this, especially when bumping into Muriel during the Gringott's event. By the end of that encounter, I was pretty much throwing my hands up in the air, thinking that there were too many unresolved things between Muriel and Bathilda for them both to ever reconcile fully. Not to mention how proud the both of them are. I like the reference to Bathilda having a number of relationships with other women during her life, perhaps attempting to find companionship, though of course, none of these really compare to what she and Muriel had. I can imagine Bathilda leading this very open lifestyle, continuing to remain scandalously unmarried - as you wrote her in the first chapter - having many lovers.
Ooh, and Grindelwald performed Occlumency on her!! Aah, and I wrote Kendra doing a Memory Charm on Bathilda in my own fic. :P And Rita Skeeter definitely did something to her as well. Yeah, seriously, WHY is everyone messing with Bathilda's head!?! :P
But the part I liked best was that final bit with the Moon Maiden, and the explanation of all the windows showing different parts of Bathilda's life, what has been or could have been. The demon children surprised me, in particular,. I loved how deftly you wrote that scene; it tied things up perfectly, and shed more light on the Moon Maiden myth (pun not intended :P ). I didn't expect the stranger to be the Moon Maiden! But of course it makes perfect sense. I pretty much adore the premise that before Bathilda can ever attain any measure of happiness, she has to confront the truth of everything she was, she and Muriel, and in order to confront that truth, she has to write. It's honestly very well-thought out, because Bathilda is a writer after all, and writing has been a powerful tool for her throughout her life - she uses writing to elevate her social status in the wizarding world, but she also misuses writing, e.g. in that awful, impulsive letter she sent to Muriel all those years ago.
And of course, I can't tell you how happy I am that Muriel and Bathilda finally got together again. I'm imagining them both living a peaceful afterlife in Bathilda's old cottage, now a much more peaceful place, gossiping and teasing and chattering to their heart's content.
Fabulously written story, Jenna! ♥ I saw that Aphoride recommended it on the forums and it deserves just that. Because I'm so tardy, I have a few more entries/chapters to get through before posting the challenge results *hdies* Thank you so much for participating; this has been a joy to read.
Author's Response: Hi teh! :) Wow, another monster review... thank you so much!!
I'm so glad you liked this ending to the story, I absolutely loved working on this strange but fun little creation. I know what you mean about not having a happy ending! Looking back I do find this ending a little ominous and happy at the same time but it was always going to end this way, with the bittersweet ending in real life and then the reunion in death. In my head there was sort of the danger that this Muriel might be a figment of Bathilda's imagination, that all the figures could just be appearing inside her head, but either way she gets to be with her love again. :)
It makes me so happy that you like Bathilda! She's such a contradictory character here - she's very brave and trail-blazing in some ways, but at the same time she has all these doubts and fears and isn't comfortable with publicly revealing her sexuality. I love how you described her "inescapable hollowness" - that is very true. They are both so proud, and judging from the way Muriel spoke about Bathilda in DH I imagined she would hold a grudge even if her own heart was hurting for a very long time. Bathilda is so scandalous, but when it really matters to her she can't fight for it - I do love her for that though.
Haha! I was so sad/amused when I read what happened to your Bathilda in DC. My poor Batty! :( ♥
I'm so pleased you liked the explanation of it all - that was one of the first sections I wrote so it felt really good to finally explain everything - in an afterlife, cryptic sort of way. *giggles at pun* :P I'm actually glad it came as a little unexpected but tied in the story well, and how the myth and the title and Bathilda's world are so intertwined. Yes, I imagined that her writing would be an important outlet, as was facing things in that cottage where she lived for so long. And I love your mention of how she "misused" writing to hurt Muriel - it's so true, and shows how crucial yet destructive writing is to her while remaining an integral part of herself.
I agree! They would have an afterlife full of tea, gossiping and probably arguing, though I'm not sure where they would go to get away from one another. :P I'm really pleased you liked the ending and the potential it could bring.
Thank you so much for all these amazing reviews, teh! :D And thank you for the challenge - I never would have had the motivation to act on this strange idea of a ship if it weren't for the challenge, and I think I learned a lot while writing this. Good luck with all the other entries - thanks so much! :)