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Review:patronus_charm says:
Ah, itís this one-shot! I kept seeing you mention it, and Iíve been so excited to read it as it just sounds so intriguing so yay :D

Susan, I have no words. I seriously donít. I think this is honestly your best work yet as there were so many levels to it and it was so complex and so beautiful and itís probably going to take me several more read-throughs until I can fully understand and appreciate all of the levels but wow this was amazing!!

The first section was just so powerful with so many amazing bits of descriptions and imagery I was just blow away and it really set the bar for what the one-shot was going to be. There were so many powerful bits such as here ĎIt is a land of the blind, the deafí and ĎDeath is only a maní and even though at times they were so simple, the way you designed them was just awe-worthy.

Your entire structure of the one-shot followed on from this and it was just truly amazing! The mix of long and sort of dreamy descriptions contrasted brilliant with the shorter, blunter, singular words and it really showed the levels of their relationship and how it was always shifting from one form to the other. I canít even quote anymore description as it would fill up the entire review box, but seriously, this contained some of your best description yet!

Wow, Snape, was just wow! You must have thought about his character and studied it a lot to characterise him so brilliantly as your version of him here is incomparable to any other one and it just blows them out of the water. You really showed the bitter and colder side to Snape which isnít often shown, and that was highlighted really well in the second section when he left home and seemed to just lack feeling for his mother and viewed her almost as a weakling, like Voldemort did with his own mother too I guess and that link was really interesting.

One would expect him to become cold and evil from after joining Voldemort but you made a really interesting twist and I really enjoyed it! There was the almost warmth and affection when he thought of Voldemort and the mixture of pity and anger when he thought of his mother and Lily and how they had seemingly just thrown it all away. I canít even formulate words properly as itís still blowing my mind, but I just basically think this is the best version of Snape I have ever come across and nothing could ever match it.

His relationship with Voldemort was so intriguing. In the majority of it, you could clearly see that Voldemort was the superior one and it said so here ĎWith that, Severus Snape became the Dark Lordís maní showing the power of the relationship and how it was Snape who later fretted about whether the Dark Lord would always want to remain with him. But then in moments such as in section four where you described their physical relationship it almost seemed reversed, and that they were equals, and just the way you managed to portray both sides with excellence is just amazing!

The final section, Coda, was possibly my joint favourite with the first, as it clearly see there where you got the basis of your one-shot from the Snape and Lily argument. It is really interesting to ponder whether that could have been the case as Snape was so desperate to live that I could imagine he could change his fixation with Voldemort to one with Lily.

Wowow, this one-shot was just amazing (I think thatís been almost every other word in this review) and I think you definitely answered those questions in such an original way that has to be applauded! This is definitely going into my favourites :D (also, sorry if the review is incoherent, Iím meant to be asleep but I saw this and had to read it before I went to bed)


Author's Response: Thank you again for taking the time to read and leave a lovely long review, Kiana! I'm sorry to have taken so long to respond - these long reviews always pose a challenge because it's easy to ramble on and on without saying anything at all. ;)

You see, you said best work, and I don't know how to respond to that. It was a hard story to write, coming out of somewhere else in my head, slowly unravelling while I was dealing with unpleasantness. For some reason, writing this story /slowly/ really worked - it brought out deeper emotions, the darker imagery, and it means a lot to hear that you liked seeing these things and admire the story so much. It's also just a weird story - that's easy to admit. I'm glad you picked up on the contrast between the dream-like and harsh portions of the narrative. It's not just that the story contains a lot of memories and dreams, but that Snape is caught between the word of illusion and disillusion - he's lost and takes the wrong path, not so much because the world around him is flawed, but because he is. He can never have the fairy tale narrative of the underdog who becomes a prince because, unlike the good-at-heart underdogs, his heart is already poisoned. It makes him very difficult to write. I don't want to demonize him, but rather keep him securely in that grey area.

There was always a gap there in Snape's story - his mother. She was the one person that looked like him, perhaps even was like him inside too, yet she disappears from his story. Was it because he wanted to be like Voldemort, motherless, unconnected and unaffected? It was possible that Tobias killed her, but surely that would have come into the story somewhere - it's too traumatic a thing for Snape to have entirely ignored. So he's the one who instead engineers the break, of course blaming her - because that's what he does: displaces the blame on to others rather than take the responsibility for himself. (Snape's a character study of people I've known, which probably explains why I find him interesting - his personality type is too familiar.)

It's really hard to describe what Snape and Voldemort have. Their relationship in the books was too close for it to have just been that of master and servant - Voldemort's treatment of Lucius, Pettigrew, and even Bellatrix shows otherwise. Snape was special to Voldemort, to the point where Voldemort is blind to Snape's treachery - that's incredible, when you think of it. Snape tricked Voldemort, lied to him, betrayed him, and Voldemort never knew! Voldemort only kills him because he wants the Elder Wand - and victory - more than he wants to keep Snape. There's so much there to draw from, so much that we can never know, and I'm surprised that more writers haven't looked closer at it (there has to be some out there - I've just missed them).

Thank you again for your review! It means a lot that you've liked this story so much! :D

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