Reading Reviews for L'optimisme
150 Reviews Found

Review #26, by Cecilia Germany

27th January 2016:
Dear Aphoride,

It's been way too long since I first thought about leaving a message on this story and it's really about time I did it! I've been eagerly following and reading L'optimisme for almost a year now and I wish I could write for ages about everything that it means to me, but I don't think there'd be enough time (and space) - not to mention my imprecise English.

I love everything about Albus Dumbledore and Gellert Grindelwald's relationship: all those dark and radiant shades it is made of, their brilliance and ruthlessness in tenderness, the considerations about life, love and power that it all brings to the mind - I could go on forever. I have come across lots of fanfictions and opinions about them, but this magnificent novel of yours is by far the best thing I've ever read on the Internet.

Your talent in mastering the words - those very words who shape our reality and trace Albus and Gellert's lives - is astonishing. I wish I could describe properly the deep, pure inspiration your writing gives to my soul every single time I go through a new chapter and, as I picture in the back of my mind all those rich, intense descriptions and flows of thoughts, meet again Albus or Gellert, moving on with their lives, following such different yet always intertwined routes.
This is how I always imagined their incredible story would be, and you're narrating it in an unique, thrilling way. Thank you.

I can't wait to
Have a nice day! xx

Author's Response: Hi Cecilia! :) Thank you so so much for stopping by - and I'm so sorry for the late response! Honestly, I just didn't know what to say - your review was so wonderful and so sweet, and literally made me blush, and it felt like it would be inadequate to repeat 'thank you thank you thank you' over and over again :P

I love writing this story - it's a pairing I wanted to write for a while before I got the courage to start this, and then I scrapped two different versions before starting this version, which eventually got published. I really, really wanted to tell it, and I love writing it, so it always means so much to hear people say that they like it too, because it's been part of my life for so long and so much of it is me finally getting to write it after so long. So thank you, thank you, thank you - it honestly means more than I can really properly say to hear that there are other people who like this pairing and other people who like how I write it, too :) :) :)

Ahhh I love writing that about them :) This whole story to me is primarily a romance - a very tragic romance, but nonetheless a romance - which just never quite ends; and also an argument, which equally never ends :P I really wanted to show that neither of them are good or bad or right or wrong - everything with them exists in shades of grey and somewhere between tangible and intangible. And love... omigosh, I love writing them in love, haha. I always wanted to write them in love from the beginning, because it makes everything that much more important and it give this kinda beautiful underlay to everything in HP :)

I have a real love for description. Dialogue and pacing and action can be difficult, but description has always come easily to me, for some reason. I don't know why, but it does, and I love writing it. It's so fun for me to do, though at times I have to cut down on it, haha, otherwise the entire chapter would just be description and nothing would ever happen :P Which is not, you know, the point of a story... but yeah, it's a style which isn't for everyone, though, and I know that - and I'm always so happy to hear that other people like it, because I know it's a very unusual style, perhaps, because it's so heavy.

This review was amazing - I'm only sorry I couldn't give a better response, and that it's so late. Thank you, thank you, thank you - this review made my week when I got it, honestly, and it makes me smile every time I read it :)

Aph xx

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Review #27, by Sinterklaas Silence

4th December 2015:
Ho, ho, hello!

Silence does heed great power -- it will be a sad day in Winterklaasville when all is for silent. Oh Dumbledore... everything was starting out so wonderfully beautiful and then suddenly it turned tragic :(. Most tragedies are sudden, however, so the swiftness is well-executed! Rest easy, Ariana...a beautiful character in a beautifully written piece!

Here's hoping you have a lovely Holiday Season!

Author's Response: Hey there - thank you so much for stopping by, Sinterklaas! :D

It would be - it's one of those strange things, but I do like writing about silence; my drama teacher always used to tell us how important it was, as did my music teacher, and that kinda stuck with me for this :) Gah, thank you - I'm so glad you liked it, and yeah, it was sort of only ever going to have a tragic ending, which is a shame, but necessary, really (even if not in canon :P). Ariana really does get a pretty rubbish lot in this, poor girl, but I'm so happy you liked her, even if she wasn't around for long :(

Thank you for the review - it was such a lovley surprise to get - and I hope your holiday season has been good so far! :)

Aph xx

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Review #28, by TreacleTart Similes

1st December 2015:
Hello Aph,

I'm here for our review swap!

Wow! The first thing that really stood out in this chapter to me was the way that you described winter. It felt so festive and beautiful, but the way that Dumbeldore was talking about it gave it a touch of melancholy.

I love all of the little details that you include in Dumbledore's character that make him seem more like a real person. His choice to smoke and then excuse it as an indulgence, his annoyance at the idea that someone else had discovered a property of dragon's blood, and his hopefulness at seeing a blonde man enter the party, all make him seem much deeper and more human. In cannon, he sort of comes off as it's nice to see a story that shows his human flaws.

The ending when he falls into bed with the golden haired Grindelwald look alike was really sad. I mean I understand why he did it. He was looking for comfort, but the idea of him being physically engaged with this man and then thinking of someone else seems really depressing.

I do wonder how Gellert wil respond to the flowers or if he'll respond at all. I do hope they'll communicate at least a little bit.

Oh and I almost forgot. I loved the beginning of this chapter and how Dumbledore tells us about Gellert's love for poetry. It does seem out of place against his background in poetry, but in a way I think it makes sense.

Good work as usual!


Author's Response: Hey there - thank you so much for dropping by again! :)

I love winter, but I think Christmas is often a family-oriented thing (at least, it is in the UK, I don't know too much about elsewhere) so for someone like Albus, who's kinda lost his family, it must be very lonely. So that kinda came from there.

Haha, they're really fun to write! I really love making characters a little more human and real and less... I dunno, godly and all-knowing or black and white, you know? I think Albus often gets the 'wise' treatment a bit too much, so here he's less wise :P And yeah, he's a lot more... almost fragile in this chapter, I think, but hehe... the smoking thing - I had to include it, tbh :P

Yeah, it kinda had to happen but it was sad. It's an easy thing to do, I think, if you have the possibility - a couple of people I know have done similar things - and I kinda wanted something more than just Gellert to give him the whole 'avoiding relationships' thing, you know?

Hehe... wait and see! No spoilers here! ;)

I'm so glad you liked it! It's been a long-standing part of my headcanon for Gellert, so I'm so happy you thought it worked! :)

Thank you so much for the lovely review, and for the swap - it was so great to do, as always! :)

Aph xx

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Review #29, by TreacleTart Bulgaria

21st November 2015:
HPFF Twitter Flash Challenge

Hey Aph!

Thought I'd drop in and take a look at how you're story is progressing. I have to say that I was thrilled to see this chapter was in Grindelwald's POV.

It's interesting to see the contrast between Grindelwald and Dumbledore. Where Dumbledore seems much more forlorn and regretful, Grindelwald sort of seems like he's simply recounting some of his favorite memories. I suppose it isn't really tinged with the same sadness as Dumbledore's POV is.

I love how you filled in his adventures between Bulgaria and leaving Dumbledore. It was a short section, but it filled in a lot. I could imagine him in the hills of Italy trying to get over his heart ache by getting drunk and keeping the company of a hot Italian man. It all seemed to fit well...and it also solidified for me that Dumbledore cared much more for him than the other way around.

I felt like the explanation of him stealing the elder wand was really exciting. Again, it was short, but it was everything necessary for me to imagine what was happening. It added just a little bit to what we already know from cannon, but it felt a bit richer.

I have to say that I'm quite anxious to see how Dumbledore and Grindelwald develop as the story continues. I mean we obviously have a general idea of what happens, but you do such a good job of creating these missing moments that piece into cannon so well. You really have your characters dialed in and you've made their voices so distinct and authentic.

As always, your description is stunning. That's possibly my favorite thing about your writing is just the way your words flow so effortlessly.

I'll be back for another chapter soon!


Author's Response: Hey Kaitlin! :) Thanks so much for dropping by on this - I'm always so glad to see people are still enjoying this!

Yeah, I really love doing the split-pov thing - I think (hope?) it works well, and it's so much fun to do, coz I don't get bored with one pov, you know?

One of the things I love about them is they have such different approaches to life and ways they look at things - Gellert is a lot more unrepentent than Albus is, and Albus does feel a lot more guilt and sorrow over what happened and what didn't happen between them.

Thanks! :D I really enjoyed writing that bit, though it was kinda strange to work out what he'd do which would be not in England or in Germany. Haha, yeah, Gellert perhaps doesn't have the best coping methods :P I don't think it's a question of care, more than it is escapism, in a way, but I get what you mean ;)

I really had wanted to write that scene for a long time since I started this - it felt like something which had to be included, you know, since it's so important to both their plans and significant to them - so I'm so glad you liked it! :)

Awww, thank you! I'm so happy you like them - they're getting much more fun to write as it goes along, I think, because there's more freedom, but it's also kinda scary because there's always the canon part which it has to fit in with, so I'm always nervous about how well it connects up.

Thank you! :) I loved writing this chapter, so I'm so happy you liked it - especially the description! :)

Aph xx

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Review #30, by Just LIVE Bavaria

27th October 2015:
I've recently just read your story and I love it! :) I really like how your quotes really connect with the chapters, sorta giving you a deeper understanding and meaning of whats going on.

Your writing style is simply brilliant! All the sentences are so elegantly thought and wrote out, anyone could see you put a lot of effort into making them the amazing story it is now.

This ending you made right now, of him thinking the fall of a cliff would be glorious is very unique it its own way because having read many fics about Gellert and Albus, I know you portrayed him in a completely different character.

The fact that you stated Gellert was leaving little clues for Albus to find seems pretty realistic from all that we know about them from story. It was a very original idea!

Great Chapter! :D

~Just LIVE

Author's Response: Hey there, thank you so so much for stopping by! :)

Thank you so much - I'm so happy you like it, and the quotes, too! I love connecting everything up in a story, so there's a lot of repeating things, and things which come up more than once :P So I'm so glad you enjoy it! :)

Thank you - I'm so happy you like it! I know it's a really strange style at times, it's very ornate, which is fun to right but perhaps less so to read? haha, so I'm so glad you like it! :D

I'm so glad you liked my version of Gellert - I know he's a very different version, but I like him so much! :) I really wanted to do something different with him - I really wanted to develop him beyond the stereotypical Dark Lord, like Voldemort mark 1, so I'm so happy you liked it! :)

Aww, thank you! :D I'm so glad you liked it (gosh, I feel like I sound like a broken record saying that, haha - I'm sorry I'm terrible at review responses!) - I really wanted to keep the connection between them through the years, and I liked the idea of little messages and signs, hinting at things they couldn't say openly, you know?

Thank you so so much for the lovely review - it was such a wonderful surprise to get! :)

Aph xx

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Review #31, by Shadowkat Silence

26th October 2015:
Here a bit late for our swap! (Darn you with your organized reviews, it's going to make mine look bad! I suck at those. XD)

Well, it took me a minute to realize who it was, but once I did it really made sense. That's what I get for getting four hours of sleep and skimming over the cover page. Oops.

But dang, I'm going to have to come back later to read, and I get why this was awarded a dobby last year! Dumbledore sounds so Dumbledore, and it just...gosh. I always love stories with him and Gellert, you know? And there just aren't enough of them either. It's a shame, because I love the thought of it, of this era!

The writing was good, nice flow. The only thing I could find is a few too many semicolons, and that's likely because I'm not used to seeing them much!

Author's Response: Hey there, Kat! :) Thank you so much for stopping by! :D (haha, I tend to do them asap so I don't forget, haha, so it's not quite so organised, in a way? :P)

Haha - no worries about it! It's not exactly too explicit in the beginning about who it is, so I get it ;)

Thank you so much! (I still can't believe that happened!) I love Albus and Gellert, too, so I totally get it! I loved writing Albus in this, too, and all the innocence which then sort of gets lost later on, so I'm so glad you like it! :)

Yeah, no worries - I know I have problems with grammar sometimes/often, haha, I'll look over it soon enough! :)

Thank you so much for the lovely review - it was so great to get! :)

Aph xx

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Review #32, by Penelope Inkwell Similes

17th September 2015:
Even now, when I think of it, it brings a smile to my face, and I wonder what others would think if I told them, in all honesty, that Gellert Grindelwald, terror of Europe, former dictator and Dark Lord, was an avid reader – and lover, indeed – of poetry
--once again, I really like how you give Grindelwald facets. He was ruthless, a killer, yes. But he also loved poetry and apparently enjoyed the opera.

Do they allow you books in Nurmengard? I cannot imagine they do; they are still wary of you, of what you might do if given the chance. Perhaps I should send you some – novels, poetry, history – if only to save you from yourself. Locking you in prison was one thing, but sitting back and allowing you to drive yourself quite mad with boredom is another.
--Yes! Called it!

No, in this we were opposites – as we were in so many things, as we discovered in the end.
--I find it interesting that Gellert really clings to the idea that they were always together in this, that they had thought the same things and that Albus had just kind of bailed, almost chickened out. Or, at least, that's how he seems to think about it. Dumbledore, on the other hand, believes that, at their cores, there were always key differences, even as he doesn't really look down on Gellert. It's interesting.


similies and comparisons,
--I think it's spelled "similes".

since my own linguistic skills have always been poor, despite your best attempts at instruction, my darling.
--I wondered about this a bit, since we know that Dumbledore speaks Mermish and Gobbledegook, at least.

Excellent job, Aph! Your writing really is superb (and I can see why you're so fond of the Romantic poets--it's beautifully reflected in your style. Congratulations on all your Dobbys nominations, once again!


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Review #33, by Penelope Inkwell Words

17th September 2015:
Though their meanings are often simpler to decipher, words are as potent as silence can be – and, in my experience, are far more likely to be employed to hurt, as they require far less skill on the part of the one wielding them. They can bite and nip, wound to the bone, and potentially kill.
--This is a great description, and very true. I don't know that I've thought of it before, but he's quite right: it takes skill to powerfully wield silence. Words are much easier. It reminds me--back when I was studying acting--one of the notes we'd always get as fledgling actors were notes on how to use silence. We could all read the lines, and do it well, but learning when to pause, and how long to hold it, and having the courage to hold it out, to trust your instincts and not break under the pressure and the silence--that took a lot of work.

And, of course, as all mothers seem to know, silent treatment and "being disappointed" can be so much worse than recriminations and loud words.

It is interesting to note here that, of course, all spells are formed of words, incantations, used to focus the magic and so allow it to flow in a concentrated, precise manner. For this reason, non-verbal magic is so difficult and a highly prized skill amongst powerful witches and wizards. If spells can kill, can be unforgiveable, cannot words be the same?
--this is sooo Dumbledore-esque. It's like you've captured how he sounds in the notes in "The Tales of Beedle the Bard. That was a great touch--these kind of intellectual asides. He's so smart, he can't help making them, and he knows that Gellert would be able to keep up.

I love the idea that he went off to work as Nicolas Flamel's assistant after all that. It makes sense that he would flee, really, and that he would want to go somewhere far away. But it also seems the sort of thing that would be a bit prestigious, that would suit his advanced mind. And, of course, it's a nice little fill-in to the question of how the two of them met.

Nice work!


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Review #34, by Penelope Inkwell Wales

17th September 2015:
They have allowed me books, you know – only in recent years, when they have stopped thinking of me as a threat (though I cannot help but wonder if this, too, is your doing. It would not surprise me)
--this was an interesting--and very believable--touch. I could see Dumbledore being concerned for anyone's prison conditions, no matter what they had done. I think, as a great mind himself, he would be troubled by the idea of a brilliant mind turning in on itself and going madder for lack of exercise. And then, of course, it was Gellert. And it's clear in this fic that, whatever he had done and whatever had become of them, there was a part of him that still cared.

Instead of saying that, instead of being utterly honest with you, I spoke to you of how you were wasted here, how we both were, how our talents would be better served elsewhere, anywhere, together. It was what you wanted to hear, no? To be encouraged to want to leave, to have that desire understood by someone who could match you? It was what you wanted to hear, and what I wanted to tell you.
--this was a really interesting idea--the thought that Gellert's urging was initially not based on the idea that they were too good for that place, but his desire to connect to Albus, to be someone whom Albus would feel could understand him. It adds a lot of depth to Gellert's character.

I did not like you distracted, subdued like a whipped dog; I wanted you to be alive.
--this is such an interesting line. It goes from sounding selfish--he doesn't want Albus to be distracted from him, from their plans--to what sounds like legitimate concern, though in a harsh way that fits his character. Once again, you manage to give Gellert some facets and angles, rather than making him a caricature of an "evil wizard". Maybe it was this experience, early on, that made Dumbledore so open to seeing the good in people all the world might judge to be "bad" (like Snape, or Draco). He was so forgiving of the people whom nobody thought was worthy of it, and I can see how that could have begun with Gellert, with his knowledge of how a person can go so wrong, but can still have goodness in them

I could not help it, and I tried to cover it, tried to hide the embarrassment and shame I felt of having such childish emotions (for they are, no matter what you might say about romance and comfort)
--this was another interesting piece of characterization--an opposition to Dumbledore's beliefs about the power and importance of love. And this, too, fits quite well.

As soon as she had died – even as I felt the blood on my cheek starting to dry and my hand trembling because she was dead and I knew her killer and I knew you needed me but how could I stay, how could I – I knew that you had been destroyed. Without her, your passion for the ideals fled (perhaps they had been centred in her all along, and I had simply been too blind and too selfish to see it)
--So he really does know. I'm curious--do you have a headcanon for which of them it was. Do you have a hard idea of what, exactly, Gellert saw here. He's right, though. Maybe Dumbledore did need him, but he truly would have been sent to Azkaban. They wouldn't have believed him. (and, if they could test his wand...what if it wasn't him? That could have destroyed Albus even more. Perhaps in some ways Gellert did the kindest thing for him. We don't know if he was the killer, but if he wasn't, he gave Albus a scapegoat; he gave him the chance to believe that Albus himself had not done it).

I thought that was interesting, about how maybe it was for Ariana all along. I think that was mentioned, in the books, right? That if their plans came to fruition, Ariana wouldn't have to be hidden. I do think a large part of Albus latching onto their plans was a desire to get out of dodge, but I still think it could have been a significant factor, and I liked seeing Gellert reflect on it.


huge, green hills rolling off into the horizon, their sides untouched, perhaps even unchartered,
--I think that "unchartered" should be "uncharted."

No, now as I sit here, fighting cramp and fading sight,
--it might be better to say "cramps" instead of "cramp".

Wow. In just one chapter, you've added a lot of depth to a villain. I'm really impressed!


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Review #35, by Penelope Inkwell Silence

17th September 2015:
Hello again! It's me, reading through the Dobby noms--congratulations, yet again!

In others, we are the oppressors, spiting hatred, a kind of verbal violence. It is in moments like that we feel at our most powerful, when we do not need to raise a hand to make people kneel and crawl and weep.

No one talks about silence.

It is the forgotten part of conversations, the part no one thinks about or considers as important, but, really, which defines everything. There is nothing quite so terrifying as a pause, only a second’s worth of silence. Your heart quickens, your mouth dries and your palms sweat; you wait, anxious, suddenly second-guessing yourself about everything you thought you knew, wondering if, maybe, you were wrong. In the hands of a master, it is an intense, deadly weapon, choking you without requiring any force, any malice, anything other than itself.

--this whole passage is phenomenal. It just really is.

You do a great job with balancing words and emotion. This fic obviously revels in word usage (in a way that I think suits Dumbledore quite well), but it doesn't gum up the works, as can sometimes happen. I feel like the emotion still really shines through--especially the pain and confusion and horror of Ariana's death.

I think you've also done a really good job of capturing Dumbledore's voice--academic, but still emotionally attached. Wise. Occasionally self-deprecating. It really suits his character.

I've never seen a fic in which he was this forgiving of Grindelwald, or willing to be this vulnerable in front of him, so that's a very interesting take. He seems a bit more secure of Gellert's affections here, and I'm interested to see how that's going to go.

I can almost hear you laughing at me; I almost wish I could.
--this was so sad. :(


We are warned against it, wary of their power since young,
--I wasn't sure, or anything, but I thought that "since young" might not flow as well as some other options, like "since we are young", or "from our youth"? But, like I said, I'm not certain those are better, by any means, it's just a thought, because "since young" stuck out a little, to me.

spiting hatred
--should this be "spitting hatred?"

Excellent work, but then I'm hardly surprised. Your way with words really is incredible, though.


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Review #36, by HeyMrsPotter Similes

13th September 2015:
Who doesn't love stories about christmas? :)

Dumbledore's heartbreak is so obvious in this chapter in comparison with the happiness that usually comes with christmas. Even though he's describing things as spectacular and saying that he enjoyed himself, and that things were beautiful, it still all sounds so sad, as if it would be better if Gellert was there.

I can really see why this story has been nominated, and for more than one round of the Dobbys. Your writing is impeccable.


Author's Response: Hi Dee! :) Thank you so so much for stopping by again - it means so much! :)

Christmas! :D Everyone loves Christmas! I couldn't resist writing a Christmas chapter, haha... :P

I really wanted to play on the happiness theme, and the idea that this one stands out because of what it - and the one before - should have been, and what it ended up being in contrast to it. I think the story is generally kinda sad, haha, so it's a little hard to avoid it (though I'm always kinda scared it's too repetitive on that point...), so I'm so glad you liked that! :)

Thank you so so much - you're giving me far too many compliments here, and it's so lovely, but I really don't know what to say other than thank you! :)

Thank you so so much for the lovely bunch of reviews you left me - they were so wonderful to get, and such a lovely surprise, thank you! :)

Aph xx

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Review #37, by HeyMrsPotter Bulgaria

13th September 2015:
Laura! I loved this chapter♥

Missing moments are my absolute favourite and I've never read a story about Gellert stealing the Elder Wand before. I love that you gave it the build up too, of where he had been between Ariana's death and finding it.

As always, your description in this is absolutely incredible. I really fel like I'm right there with Gellert and Dumbledore every step of the way in this story.


Author's Response: Gah, Dee, you're waaay too nice - you've got to stop doing this! :)

I really wanted to include the Elder Wand - I thought it was important, that connection to the Hallows. Also, I thought it was important for him and to him, in a way... yeah, I'm insane, haha :P But yeah, I liked including what he did, because it was always mentioned to be a bit of a black hole, in canon :P

Thank you so much - I know i've said this before, but I really do love writing this, and it means so much that other people enjoy it too! :) :)

Aph xx

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Review #38, by HeyMrsPotter Words

13th September 2015:
but the following scandal would not, I think, have been worth the few moments of amusement it would have produced. LOL omg favourite line of this chapter. This is just SO Dumbledore, of course he would have found this absolutely hilarious.

I like the idea of Dumbledore seeking out friends after Ariana by means of distraction, and the inclusion of the Flamels was a nice touch. I'm enjoying the alternating between Dumbledore and Gellert's points of view, and that I can tell by the 'voice' which is which before any characters have been mentioned.


Author's Response: Dee - hi again! :D Thank you so much! :)

Haha, I'm so happy people seem to like that line - I loved writing it :P One of my rare bouts of humour, haha :P I kinda wanted to pay reference to the fact that he can't exactly tell anyone - and I don't think he did, you know? So yeah, that line :P

Thank you! :) I really wanted to include the Flamels, because I always wondered about it - given the obvious connections to immortality and all. And the povs... I love switching them in writing, so I'm so glad you like reading them! :)

Thank you so much for the wonderful review! :)

Aph xx

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Review #39, by HeyMrsPotter Wales

13th September 2015:
Another amazing chapter, Laura! I'm so glad you were nominated for so many Dobbys, because it's given me the chance to read your work, and now I'm kicking myself for not having read it before.

I liked the switch in POV here. And I really love the voice that you've given to Gellert. I loved how well Gellert understands Dumbledore, the way that he describes him feeling trapped by his family, and the bitterness he feels whenever Doge's letters arrived with news of the trip he should have been on. I feel like I really understand your version of a young Dumbledore from this chapter, even though it's from Gellerts point of view. It's heartbreaking how much he obviously still loves Gellert even after everything with Ariana.

Loved it :)

Author's Response: Hi again, Dee! :) Thank you so much for coming back - it means so much to see you back again! :D

Thank you! I wondered if it wouldn't work - because pov switches are always dangerous - but I really wanted to do it, to show the other half of the story, and truthfully I do enjoy writing Gellert's parts :P I really wanted to show that they do understand each other so well, no matter what happened, and how care lingers, because I always loved that aspect of their story in canon - so I'm so glad you liked it! :)

Thank you so so much for the lovely review! :)

Aph xx

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Review #40, by HeyMrsPotter Silence

13th September 2015:
Laura, congratulations on yet another (inevitably well-deserved) Dobby nomination!

Your writing is just so incredible. This chapter reads like a love letter, each word is just perfectly placed and beautiful. It really feels like it was actually written by Dumbledore himself. There's such a subtle but painfully real sense of loss and sadness in his words. Have you managed to break into JKR's home and steal her writing or something?!

As always, I loved it and cannot wait for more!


Author's Response: Ah, DEE! :) Thank you so so much - I'm so grateful for all the nominations, it's blown my mind completely! :D

Gah, thank you! I love writing this story - it really is just my baby - and I really wanted to make it more emotional than action-packed or anything, which I know runs the risk of dragging severely, so I'm so so glad you like it! :) And wow, that is way way too much of a compliment! *blushes* Thank you so much! :)

Thank you so much for the wonderful review! :)

Aph xx

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Review #41, by Frankie05 Silence

31st August 2015:
Hey Aph,

You are a brilliant writer. I seriously am at a loss for words at what to say to this story. I felt like I was reading C.S. Lewis. Lord have mercy. I had to concentrate to follow along (not s bad thing you are just extremely talented!)

I read a Albus/Gellert earlier this week and I thought I'd read yours :). It's going to prove difficult (only because I am dense sometimes )

I like how you started this off- talking about what is said in silence is often the most profound thing and then you take us through their relationships and the silence of it all especially in the mornings which seem to be Dumbledores favorite part of their relationship.

Also the scene where Ariana dies is so beautifully described. Seriously. Why are you so good at describing things. It's impeccable! You described the fight so well and the misguidings behind each of the attacks and then her death! And then poof. Bye Gellert. And now I'm sad.

Gosh this was so good. So very good. Smarty pants (in the most loving of ways)


Author's Response: Hey Frankie! :) Thank you so much for stopping by! :)

Omigosh, thank you so much! As a girl who was somewhat raised on CS Lewis, Tolkien, etc. that's huge, huge praise to me, so thank you so much! Yeah, I know it can be pretty tough going - it's pretty dense :P - so no worries ;)

Ooh, Albus/Gellert - careful, if you read too many you'll be converted ;) They are the only OTP, though, at least for me :P

This is actually a re-write, hence the 2012 label on the story shell, and I really wanted to talk more about more abstract things because it was so easy for me to slip into it in the voices I created for them, so I kinda felt it should have it's own place, and then connect in to the main body, so I'm so glad you liked it! I wasn't sure how well it would work :P And yeah, I think the silence is important to him, despite how good they were at words - or maybe because of it, who knows? :P

Ahhh, thank you! :) I'm so happy you liked that scene because it was surprisingly hard to write. JKR didn't describe it much in the books, but enough that it was so hard to do my own rendition of it, you know? So I'm so glad you liked it! And yeah, it's a pretty sad ending for a first chapter - but both necessary and inevitable, really :P

Thank you so so much for the wonderful review! (And I'll take the smarty pants and run, haha :P) It was so lovely to get! :)

Aph xx

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Review #42, by RavenclawFTW Wales

24th August 2015:
Here for the swap and BvB! Also, this is my 100th review! Woohoo! I'm very happy to leave it here on this wonderful story. :)

Ahh Aph your writing kills me. Seriously. I'll try not to be too repetitive from the first chapter but you've seriously ruined me for any other Albert/Gellert because you just write their perspectives and backstories and passions and thoughts so freaking well. You're ridiculously talented to be able to paint these brilliant characters so well here.

In this chapter, I love the ways you've softened Gellert and added to the ways he views Albus and their relationship. Mostly I'm in awe of how I can see under the surface of this characterization how Gellert is so focused and ruthless and ambitious, which is much of what we know about him from canon. But the amount that he cares for Albus shines through some of his character while not overwhelming those features, if that makes any sense. Like you've managed to weave together the seeds of a single-minded person who tries to take over Europe for his own goals and this intense connection and love so well. It's just really meshing to me in my head, especially the way that you've integrated his reaction to the Ariana situation.

It's basically pointless for me to talk about your imagery every review but it's so ridiculously wonderful and evocative that I can't not mention it, you know? I just feel like I can picture Wales and Gellert's initial wonder at the beautiful land around him, and then also his home and his desire to return there with Albus.

In this chapter this line really stood out to me: Perhaps they might call it that later, if you ever tell anyone of me (though I doubt it, for it would reveal you to be fallible and human and would hint at a longing you wish you were better than to have), but it was not a lie.

I think that's such a great and short way to summarize so much about Albus and his character and his relationship with Gellert and the bitterness that Gellert has after it all goes south, but then also the understanding that Gellert has of Albus and his flaws. Ugh sorry I always end up rambling so inarticulately but this is just such a great representation of their characters and relationship. It kills me.

Thanks for the swap! I hope we do another soon. Or if I get time I may end up just going through and reviewing like all of this story because it makes my heart ache.


Author's Response: Hey there, J - thanks so much for stopping again! :) And yay for getting to 100 reviews - congrats! :D

Gah, thank you so much! :) They're characters I really love, and a pairing I really love so much, so I'm so glad you like it, because it's a story I really, really wanted to write and I love writing it, so it always means so much to hear that from other people :D

Thank you! :) I really wanted to make it clear that Gellert isn't quite Voldemort 1.0, you know, and that he's different - he can be nicer and sweeter than perhaps people thought. He's not exactly all sunshine and rainbows, though - haha, he's definitely still super ambitious and driven and not very patient and doesn't like being disappointed or thrown off. But he's really fun to write, and I love it when people say that I've done more with him than people thought, you know? It's nice, coz it means you took a character somewhere unexpected :) And yeah, the Ariana thing - it was surprisingly easy to write after the first chapter. That was the hard bit for that, I think.

Gah, thank you so much! :) I love writing from pictures, and this fic is incredibly self-indulgent in that I get to do that with pretty much every other chapter, so it works out, but I'm so happy you like it :P

I have a very strange love of writing about their kind of failed, tortured, but still half-continuing relationship, haha. It's bad, but it's so much fun and so fascinating to write, especially with them because I think it's so human, you know? And yeah, Gellert really is pretty bitter about it - but they both feel that Albus is the braver one, so in a way, it's not massively complimentary to Gellert himself :P

Thank you so so much for the lovely review - I'm so glad you like the story! :)

Aph xx

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Review #43, by RavenclawFTW Silence

17th August 2015:
Hey Aph! Here for the swap and BvB.

So I've honestly been avoiding reading this fic for a while now because something about Albus/Gellert really, really stresses me out. Like...I'm too light-hearted a person to handle a ship that's doomed from the start, y'know? Plus I think it's so so hard to capture Albus in fic because he's so brilliant and we really only scratch the surface of his character in canon, so I'm always slightly apprehensive to see him in fic.

That said...yowza, Aph. You capture Albus's voice so well. I have no problem reconciling what we know of him, and how we see him as an old man weighed down with regret, with the voice you're creating here. The numerous asides and the ways his thoughts drift in so many directions is perfect, and I also love the bittersweet tone you're hitting about his relationship with Gellert. It's so easy to see how Albus romanticized and idolized him when he was younger, but how he came to understand more about Gellert over time and see his faults.

I also love how you've shown Albus's reaction to Ariana's death. It fits so perfectly with his actions in canon and also seems to anchor a lot of his later regret, which seems to be based not only on her death but also his reaction to everything that was going on. I'm curious to see if you're going to touch on the funeral, especially because I really enjoy the hints of Aberforth's character you've introduced in this chapter.

I think it basically goes without saying but I'll say it anyway: as ever, your descriptions are so wonderfully constructed and totally evocative. The details you think to include, like the cherry tree outside the window and the blood on Gellert's collar, paint such a vivid and poignant image in my mind. Ugh. You're ridiculously talented, Aph.

Okay, I think that's about all I have to say for this first chapter, but I will definitely be back for more sometime soon! Seriously incredible job with this introduction, Aph.


Author's Response: Hey there, J! :) Thank you so much for dropping by!

Haha, no worries, it's definitely a very tragic ship - and this is pretty much canon (I think? :P), so, well, everyone knows how it'll end :P And yeah, Albus is one of those characters who's fleshed out so much in the books it's a really intimidating task to take him on - I get that completely! ;)

Gah, thank you so much! :D Since writing this I've actually got strangely comfortable writing him as a character :P Which is weird coz normally I avoid major canon characters like the plague... and the bittersweet thing... I love the kind of looking back style for this, it's so useful, I think, for this kind of story because it allows for two perspectives on things, you know? First impressions and second, almost :P

Thank you! :D It was really strange writing that scene - it gave me a bit of trouble at the beginning, but then ended up being easier than I thought, so it was a very weird scene in total. I really wanted to give him reasons to dislike himself for it, and, well, not crying and just shock seemed a pretty good way to go :P (Poor Albus...) The funeral may come into it later? But not immediately, no. Otherwise I'd never get past 1900 :P (But Aberforth will come back into it, of course! ;))

I love details - I have a tendency to write things and think there aren't enough details, so I'm so glad you liked them! :) Thank you so much! :)

Gahhh, thank you so much - this was an amazing review to get! :)

Aph xx

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Review #44, by BellaLestrange87 Sicily

26th July 2015:
Laura! It's been so long since I left a review for this story - way too long. (And I'm so happy you're doing Camp because it means I have lots of beautiful writing to read!)

Also, this entire review will probably consist of me quoting your prose back at you talking about how beautiful it is.

Like this - I do not believe in paradise, in perfection of nature realised, beauty and serenity twined together so that you feel nothing can go wrong there, nothing bad can exist there; it is all left outside the edges, abandoned at the border, snarling and growling and waiting for your return. - THAT IS GORGEOUS. How do you come up with sentences like this?? How? Teach me your ways, please.

One thing about this - There is a time and place for such things, for displays of wealth and power, reminders of to whom you bow, but not in a crisis, not while people choke on ash and pray that the next bullet will not (or perhaps would; the trick to wars is not to survive, but to survive the aftermath. Death’s last call to those he could not collect) hit them. - the bit in the parentheses feels a bit odd there; maybe move it to the end of the sentence, after "them". I'm reading this out loud (best way to appreciate it *nods*) and it felt weird. It's still a gorgeous sentence, though (and true, from my history-nerd reading.)

that we should potter about drawing rooms and orangeries - that we should putter?

This line was very intriguing - Two of my half-brothers were to die in the war, sabres and muskets in hand, Austrian blue on their backs and the roar of a nation in their throats. Grindelwald has muggle ancestry? I find it interesting that he's talking about dominating muggles for the greater good when he's a half-blood himself. Right now he's reminding me both of Snape, Voldemort, and Hitler.

This is also gorgeous - I stood, soon enough, and I spoke, and I watched their thoughts and their feelings flitter across their faces, one by one – some half-hidden, some completely bare, and a very few curtained entirely. The spear hovered in my hand, vibrating, cold and hungry, and when it flew, the air shivered around it; a ripple, almost visible, passed out from where it hit, spreading across the room, enveloping each person as it went, shards of it, thin and poisonous in nature, piercing their skin and sinking down.

I really enjoyed reading the conversation between Albus and Gellert. It had the right amount of awkwardness (as there would be between two people who had spent years desiring each other with a bad past) and familiarity. I'm wondering right now if Albus withdrew himself from all political activity after Gellert?

Okay, this bit is perfect - Silence, then, and a silence too strong on both of our shoulders, a storm-cloud full of the things we had not said, the things we had never said and should have, and the things we would take back, if given the chance. So many words there, unheard and unspoken – incomplete halves of a conversation, as ungainly even in thought as a pas-de-deux danced by one. Perfect.

I found a few typos:

that we should potter about drawing rooms and orangeries - that we should putter?

ah, but sense it often lost on those who are most in need of it, no? - but sense is often lost

*runs off to read more of your work*


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Review #45, by blackballet Silence

19th July 2015:
Hi there! I'm here from the Ravenclaw Review Battle for team Bronze

First off, I'd like to say that I love how you've started this first chapter. I think it really helps set up the tone and mood for the story, and flows together easily. It switches perfectly from an analysis to a narration of someone's (main characters?) life It doesn't seem at all forced, and eases nicely into the beginning of your story.
The introduction to Dumbledore and Grindelwald perfectly sets their relationship as well. It explains enough without being obtuse, and also reflects the acknowledgment of same-sex relationships in the 1800s- non-existent.
When Dumbledore begins recalling the events leading up to Ariana's demise, it is also clear that the story has taken a turn for the darker. It didn't give anything away, but I somehow immediately knew that something bad was going to happen. Your technique is SO thorough and subtle!
Finally, after Ariana's death, the silence comes back into play. The fact that you tied together all of this is so fantastic. It fit so well with the beginning and was not redundant in the slightest. It also fits very well with Dumbledore's canon character, and is something I could see him calling back on.
Overall, I loved this first chapter so much! It could definitely stand alone as a one-shot, and I can't even imagine how you've expanded on it. Thanks for such a lovely piece!


Author's Response: Hey there - thank you so much for stopping by! :)

Thank you so much! It was strange writing it - I wrote the analytical part and wasn't sure to include it or not really, since I didn't know if it really worked as a section, so I'm so glad you liked it! :)

Yeah, I really didn't want to make their relationship incredibly overt, because, as you say, it wasn't at the time - but at the same time, it needed to be overt enough, because obviously they lived it, you know? Kind of a balancing act to do there...

Thank you! :) Ariana's death was one of those scenes which was so terrifying to actually write, because it needed to be right, I felt, so it was really hard to do. I really liked getting to tie it back to silence, too - though it wasn't planned at all, haha. And yeah, writing suspensful things is something I've worked on before this, so it wasn't perhaps as hard in terms of technique as it could have been (before I practised it I was so bad at it, haha), but I still struggled a bit with that scene so I'm so glad you liked it! :)

Thank you so so much for the lovely review - and thank you again for stopping by! It was such a nice thing to get; I'm just so glad you liked the story! :)

Aph xx

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Review #46, by toomanycurls Silence

16th July 2015:
Dear Laura,

I feel that it is long past due for me to start in on this. I feel as if the first chapter was so complete that I am curious as to what the rest of the story is about. It will be difficult to address everything I like about this chapter but I will try.

The exposition and theme around silence gave this chapter a wonderful tone and thoughtfulness that I'd expect from Dumbledore. I thought it very fitting that Dumbledore would use the pensieve to keep his private, treasured memories as well as those of great importance to the rest of the world.

I appreciate that you started with Gellert and Albus already together - and I'm guessing that this will either go through the fallout of their relationship or go back and start from its beginning. Their intimacy is delightful. I love that you managed it with such tenderness and discretion. Even in their tender moments, I can sense a bit of a power play between them (not wanting to ask him to stay but not wanting him to leave).

This might be my favorite Ariana death scene that I've read. Albus' response in the moment certainly seemed to anchor his guilt in later years. I liked his concern for Gellert and almost disregard for Aberforth (I'm pretty sure he was barely mentione in the last section). One thing that also stood out to me here is Albus' need to see the best in people - wanting to think Gellert agonized over Ariana's death.

You have a brilliant opening chapter and I will jump into more of this later!


Author's Response: Hey Rose! :) Thank you so much for stopping by! :)

Thank you so so much! :) Yeah, it's strange because the first two chapters, especially this one, sort of go through an entire relationship, almost - the two months - so they sort of are pretty complete, in their own way? So yeah, I totally get that! :)

Thank you! I really like having themes for chapters, tbh, as they help me to focus on things (I'm so bad otherwise...) so I'm so glad you liked that - yeah, I always kinda assumed those memories would be in there; too precious and too painful, and also too secret, almost, in their own way.

Yeah, it's going to go on forwards, though there will inevitably be glimpses of that summer and what happened, so it sort of does both, in a way? But I always wanted to explore more what happened afterwards, since to me that was always more interesting :) I'm so happy you like their relationship - I really wanted to make it seem so real, if a little tense, and yeah, there is a sense of power between them, definitely!

Haha, thank you? :P But seriously, thank you! I quite like writing death scenes (coz that's not weird at all... :P) and hers was fun, if difficult to write. I really wanted to give Albus reason to feel guilty, but equally less reason than perhaps he takes on himself, if that makes sense. And yeah, he really wants to think it mattered to Gellert - a side-effect of still caring, I think.

Thank you so so much for the amazing review - it was so so lovely to get; I'm so glad you liked the chapter! :)

Aph xx

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Review #47, by BookDinosaur Wales

13th July 2015:
Laura! here for our review swap and i am so late. so. late. it's not like i even have a good excuse? i'm so sorry. and oh my days have i not reviewed this before? i honestly thought i already had, but that's okay, i can make up for both of those transgressions now, hopefully :)

oh my days, i don't think i can ever say this enough laura, but your prose and descriptions are so gorgeous and beautiful and how do you do this please teach me your ways? i honestly don't know how you write with such a beautiful flowing style and i'm sure that you're sick of me telling you this (over and over and over, in every review that i've ever left for you, probably) but i can't not say it. your writing is the most beautiful thing.

i wasn't expecting that you would ever turn to gellert's POV, and i'm not sure what i was expecting but i don't think it was this - you created a complex and sympathetic character from the one-dimensional figure which we saw in canon while not actually contradicting canon.

i love love love this quote: Without you, I do not remember the places. Make of that what you will. as i said, i don't know what i was expecting with gellert, but i don't think that i ever expected him to have adored albus as clearly and as much as he does in this fic - you show the reader that this is a love which went both ways, and it was situation and belief which eventually separated them. i think that is am example of the saddest breakups of all - how they loved each other, and it was external forces which separated them.

the kiss that you wrote was so beautiful. you conveyed the emotion that the two of them so well and so powerfully, and painted such a vivid picture with your beautiful description - seriously, laura, teach me your ways! D:

i love the slightly darker tone that gellert adopts at the end. does this mean he knows who killed ariana? i'm so glad you touched on his thoughts when it concerned ariana's death, though, b ecause i don't think people expect him to have thbought about it much in future years or been remorseful at all, and it was very interesting to see his thoughts on the matter.

the spilt-pov technique that you employed to tell the story works really well; i don't know how but you've managed to create two very different voices just from these two chapters - how albus thinks more about words, more rationally, and how gellert is a person of action, someone who becomes enchanted with and then bored with a place in quick succession, you know?

i don't know how much of this made sense and how much was weird rambling, but i really, really loved this chapter and hopefully i'll be back to review more of this!

♥ emily

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Review #48, by AlexFan Hungary

22nd June 2015:
I am something like two months late with this review so "I'm late" is an understatement at this point nevertheless I am here!

I don’t know why this has a lower count than all of the chapters to be honest with you because I really enjoyed reading about Gellert’s back story. I liked the glimpse into his family history, it just made him seem more real, and I actually pitied him a little bit to be honest with you, to grow up knowing that you were unwanted simply because you were the result of an out of marriage pregnancy, I can only imagine what kind of affect that must’ve had on a child.

I thought Gellert’s backstory was a little bit like Albus’s to be honest with you, Gellert was the child that was kept silent and that no one was supposed to know about because of the shame that it would bring upon the family and hidden away and isolated much like Ariana was hidden away and isolated because of her inability to control her magic because of what the muggle boys did to her. I think Albus would’ve understood Gellert’s situation very well and understood how he must’ve been feeling because of this. I really hope there’s more about Gellert’s backstory to be honest with you.

I feel like some backstory is important to Gellert’s character because it helps to understand what led to him being the person that he turned out to be and it helps to understand his motivation to do the things that he did. Seeing this bit about his life made me pity him even though he did horrible things during his time, it made Gellert seem more human and kind of destroys this idea that he’s cold and invincible because you get to see the emotions that he’s hiding.

Awesome job on this and again I’m so sorry for taking so long but I had to focus on school.

Author's Response: Hey there! :) No worries for being late - rl gets in the way sometimes; it happens to us all! :) Just glad to see you back again and that things are (hopefully) all okay on your end! :)

Thank you so much! :) I really wanted to give a little more information on Gellert, especially while he was still younger, haha, because we know about Albus' and it's so necessary to understand people, and characters are people? It is pretty sad, imo, to grow up feeling so left out and so apart because of something which wasn't your fault - but it was a very common opinion, then.

It is pretty similar, yeah. I mean, there are some differences - but they're very slight, more differences of situations rather than the effects, if that makes sense? I do have more on his backstory, and more will definitely come up later! :) And yeah, I think Albus would have found it an easy thing to sympathise with, given his own family's situation.

I'm just so glad you liked it, tbh - I wanted to include it to show a bit more of him, a different side perhaps to him, and a bit more of where and how he'd grown up, and why he'd developed the way he had. Especially since we know all of that (or a lot of that) for Albus, too... I just really didn't want it to seem too random or forced, so I'm so glad you liked it! :)

Thank you so so much for the lovely review - and seriously, don't worry about the timing! :)

Aph xx

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Review #49, by ad astra Württemberg

20th June 2015:
House Cup 2015 Review - Slytherin

I don't know what it says about me that the more I read this story, the more I love Gellert and the more I look forward to reading his chapters. The Dark Lord and malevolent dictator, perpetrator of war crimes and what can only be described as a reign of terror throughout Europe, and you make him a poet who loves watching the snow fall. File that under: things I should not find oddly heartwarming.

Work was calling; no doubt there would be time to ruminate on declarations of love made by silent admirers once I had installed a new world order. I love this line so much I can't even express to you how much I love this line

The will of the people is a powerful thing, Albus, as no doubt you know now. On it, empires rise and fall, politicians cast their souls, and the whims of God are made clear. I love this line for entirely different reasons. This story is in every way testament to your abilities as a linguist and a historian as well as a writer, down to the simple fact that you created the Codex Alaricium for this chapter. The authenticity of your setting is incredible and it adds so much depth and vibrancy to the story.

Author's Response: Hi again, Lisa! :D Thank you so much for stopping by - it's been so so amazing getting these reviews, especially from you, and I'm just so incredibly grateful for them, so thank you! :)

Thank you! :D It is one of those things - he's quite a fun character to write because opinions on him vary so differently - some people like him, some people still hate him. It's something I love about writing him - it makes it much more interesting to see what responses you get from things, if people change their minds and things. And yeah, I really, really didn't want to leave him as a kind of 2D Dark Lord figure, and for some reason poetry seemed to suit him - words in general are his sort of thing, though. I'm so glad you like it, though! :) Sometimes things which seem to make sense to me don't seem to make sense to other people :P

Gah, thank you! :) Gellert has his priorities sorted, for sure :P

Thank you so so much! I seem to say this so often in your review responses, but I'm just so blown away by your comments I'm just lost for words most of the time, so thank you! Languages and history are two of my favourite things and two hobbies as well as areas of interest, and a lot of that does feed into this, and I just love that you like that. (The Codex Alaricium came from law classes, though - not in name, but in form, sort of? :P)

Thank you so so much for the amazing set of reviews, they've been so so incredible to get, and I'm so so grateful for every one I've got, so thank you so much! :)

Aph xx

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Review #50, by ad astra Similes

20th June 2015:
House Cup 2015 Review - Slytherin

It was in this chapter that I realised how much I love the way you've structured this story, opening with reflections and moving into flashbacks. There's something oddly endearing about Albus's flashbacks in particular, and it gives the whole story a unique tone of reflection.

Quite probably they would laugh, my darling, and you mustn’t blame them for it: the Dark Arts and poetry are hardly ordinary bedfellows. I love this line so much. I shouldn't find anything endearing about the terror of Europe, former dictator and Dark Lord, but honestly? Bless his irretrievably dark, twisted and yet unashamedly nerdy soul. I love Grindelwald. What has this story done to me that I'm saying that?

Christmas aesthetics. I feel truly blessed. Thank you for this

Where you were Germanic steel, beautiful and strong and unyielding, he was light and eager and so very pliable beneath my hands. I love this line so much. Germanic steel. Your imagery is flawless.

10/10 as always. I'm in love with your writing this is a problem

Author's Response: Hi Lisa! :) Thank you so much for stopping by (again :P) - it's the most amazing run of reviews! :)

Gah, thank you so much! :) It was a strange sort of way to structure it for me - I wrote the first section of the first chapter and wasn't sure whether or not to include it, really, but left it in in the end - especially because I know I struggle with substance in chapters, and it felt a lot like avoiding that. I'm just so glad you like it! :)

I would say I'm sorry, but I'm actually just really happy, haha. I had a really solid view of Gellert when I started writing this, and I really wanted to make it less a clear-cut, good v evil, thing, so I'm so glad you like him, since that means I've kinda succeeded? Maybe... :P And yes, he is very nerdy. Though I wouldn't tell him that ;)

I had to write a Christmas chapter at some point! :P Gah, you're welcome - I loved writing it, so I'm just glad you liked it! :)

(Funny story: I was doing a lot of EU Business stuff at the time, and they always used to use the example of German steel for it. So that's sort of how that came about :P)

Thank you so so much for the wonderful review - it was amazing to get, really! Thank you! :)

Aph xx

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