Reading Reviews for Traitorous Hearts
  
121 Reviews Found

Review #26, by maraudertimes A Changing Tide

22nd September 2014:
Hiya, here for the review swap!

Ohmigoodness, I think Draco likes Astoria! ;) It was really cool to see that he didn't attack her straight away after she pulled the poker on him, especially since his wand was right there. He's intrigued by her and obviously wants to learn more about her and her situation.

I just absolutely love Astoria. She's such a great character. She's feisty and hard, but also so emotional and I just absolutely love this story. Ugh it's been so long since I've read it.

The end with Greyback was probably my least favourite part just because of Greyback, but I loved how Draco handled it. It just shows the power he can command because of his blood status and his position in Voldemort's (oops!) ranks. And just the fact that he lied for her and saved her from Greyback? *squee* It's a weird thing to want and a weird thing to think cute or desirable but it is. :)

And yay! Finally leaving the parlour. I'm so excited for the next one! This one was so jam-packed and hopefully I can continue reading this because I really like it! I'm always just so amazed and in awe of your writing skills. Keep it up because this is awesome!

Lo :)

Author's Response: Hey!

Ohmygoodness, I think he might ;)

Thank you so much! Like, so, SO much. That really means a lot.

Ick. Greyback. I understand the sentiment. And it's nice to see Draco putting all that arrogance to good use for once, isn't it?

Bahaha. Oops is right. I'm just gonna go hide over here, and if the Snatchers come, you never saw me, right?

It *is* a weird thing to find cute or desirable, but I'm totally on the same page. "Oh, Draco, the way you boss werewolves around is sooo dreamy. *swoons*"
...Look, some girls appreciate flowers. Some like chocolates. And some prefer to be rescued from certain death. But that's fine. It's apples and oranges, really.

Thank you so much for your kind words, Lo! I'm so glad you're enjoying the story!

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #27, by nott theodore A Changing Tide

21st September 2014:
Hi Penny! I'm here for our review swap - it's been far too long since I got to read some more of this lovely story!

Wow, this was a really eventful chapter to come back to! I loved the way that you opened it, with just that one word - 'Darkness'. It had such an impact and instantly had me worrying about what was going to happen to Astoria now that she's been found out as a traitor by Draco. She's in a really perilous position now, and although I know that she must get out of this in some way because she goes on to marry Draco in the future, I was still really worried about her!

I have to say once again that I loved your description throughout this chapter! You have a lovely writing style and it was great to see all the unusual comparisons and descriptions that you included which evoked such vivid pictures in my mind.

I thought Astoria managed to get out of her predicament really well at the beginning of the chapter - at least showing she's got guts, and that she's not just going to stand back and let things happen to her. Even if a poker might not be the best weapon against a wand :P I admit though, I was surprised that Draco had his wand all along and didn't even try to defend himself against her attack, because he could so easily have done so.

I think that my favourite thing about this chapter was the development that seems to have been made in it. They're only just leaving the parlour here and yet there's so much obvious development in their characters and their strange sort of relationship as well, and I find it absolutely fascinating that there's so much progress been made already.

It was so intriguing to see Draco make sure that she didn't say the name Voldemort - such a change, and I'm sure that he didn't even realise why he'd done it in the first place. I found the way that you wrote that part very convincing, as I think there are sparks and the definite potential for some romance to develop in the future between them from what we've seen already.

It was so scary when Draco realised that the others were already coming to try and take Astoria, even though I did believe him when he said he hadn't called them and told them that she was a traitor. I also found the explanation about why they're investigating 'traitors' in the way that they are really interesting - I can imagine it being very plausible, that they would need money to pay the Snatchers and the others who are working for Voldemort primarily for the monetary gain.

It was really touching to read about how much Astoria cares for her family, too. I felt so sorry for her as she was begging and pleading for Draco to spare her father at least - even if she doesn't like them that much, or get on very well with them, she still loves them deep down and is driven by that to some extent too. She'll protect them as long as she can, and I can see that in the character I imagine as Scorpius's mother and Draco's wife. I feel sorry for her to have so much responsibility laid on her shoulders when she's only young - the youngest in her family, in fact.

Fenrir Greyback... ugh, he was so creepy. You wrote him really well, though, and gave me goosebumps reading about his attitude to Astoria and wanting to be able to have his way and it was just so horrible to read but really well written since Fenrir Greyback is an awful character!

I'm so glad that Draco managed to convince Fenrir Greyback that she's innocent and actually stood up to him! It's so brave really and it's taken a lot for him to do that - as he said, he's now a traitor for having done it. I just hope that he'll be alright because of it, since he can't actually say why he's done it yet. In the future, though, I'm sure that it's going to be something that'll bring the two of them together.

I'm really intrigued by what's coming next, too! I'm pleased that Astoria's safe for now and that there's been so much progress and so much happening between them in this chapter, all with great writing. I'll try to get back soon to carry on reading!

Sian :)

Author's Response: Sian! You leave such fabulous reviews. I'm so sorry for the delay in answering them.

Thank you so much! I really spend a lot of time looking for the right analogies and rhythms, so that compliment means a lot to me. I'm so glad that you enjoy the style!

I think that if Draco had really felt endangered, he would have used his wand. But he knew that he had the advantage. As far as he knows, Astoria doesn't have a wand on her at all, and though Draco has no intention of underestimating her, he's pretty confident in his dueling skills. And, with that in mind, he could afford to be intrigued. He's seen a lot while doing this job in the past year, but no one has ever reacted quite like Astoria, and that fascinated him. He wanted to see what else she would do.

I am *delighted* that you think the development is going well. That's important to me, since obviously there's a lot of room for these two to grow. I certainly don't want to rush things, so feel free to let me know if you ever feel that someone's growth/choices strike you unrealistic.

Yeah, that was a fun part. Before, I think you can tell that they are well-matched as opponents, but I think that's the moment when you first really get to see the sparks, the possibility ; )

I'm glad you found the premise plausible. It was one just an idea that struck me: people are greedy, and Voldemort is employing some of the lowest, greediest types of people. Fanatical devotion is all very well for people like Bellatrix, but most of his followers aren't really the "devotion" type. They're out for what they can get. So I thought Voldemort would need ways of providing for his forces, and ways to pay back his "investors". Killing Muggles/the Muggle families of Muggle-borns can't bring in much money, since what they had would all be in Muggle currency. The ones who really have cash are the Purebloods themselves. So I thought they'd be knocking people off--whoever wasn't useful. The Greengrasses could easily find themselves on that list, now that Lavinia is gone. She was useful, but Felix is a shut-in, and he's gone a bit mad, so he's not worth much to the Death Eaters.
Now, the Greengrass' money outweighs their possible contributions.

Draco was curious about whether she was guilty or not, but all along, he knew it didn't really matter. However, if everyone he and his team interviewed was killed, then the Purebloods would catch on to what was happening, and they would be angry, so theoretically, he does have some say in who gets killed and who gets a reprieve. It's just that normally it comes down to whether or not Greyback is out for blood that day. This is the first time that Draco has actually asserted his authority when they showed up without Draco calling them.

Thank you. Fenrus was fun to write, but it creeped me out, too. Like, serious shivers. Ick.

It was brave of Draco! Someone give that boy a round of applause--positive reinforcement is key. I thought it made sense in his character arc, especially in light of the next chapter.

Thank you so very much for your LOVELY review. I am always glad to get your thoughts and opinions! Sending you a huge hug of thanks!

--Penny



 Report Review

Review #28, by Gabriella Hunter A Dangerous Revelation

21st September 2014:
Hello!

This is Gabbie from the forums with your review and it feels so good to be back. It hasn't been that long since I read the last chapter but I've been really eager about continuing and I love what you've done here. Our Astoria's continue to be the same but yours is so cunning and a bit ruthless when she needs to be! I adore it.

I'm a bit worried about the conversation that she's having with Draco at the moment. THere's something about him that's making me uneasy, it's probably just because he's so calm about everything, he's not rushing for information or making any idle threats. Also, the thought of him in glasses makes me giggle. That had nothing at all to do with anything but I feel like Draco is the one probing for information and playing Astoria, I wonder what will happen next.

Astoria really shocked me in this chapter, I never expected her to actually take this kind of risk. I liked all the canon that you included in this chapter as well but it felt very dangerous while I was reading and I thought of Hogwarts as more of a prison. It certainly added to the feel of the chapter too and by the time she was talking to Ginny, I was really tense. The back and forth between the two of them was really well-written, I got enough of Ginny's character and Astoria's acting was really amazing. I liked that she saw how genuine Ginny was though and told her about what happened to her mother, I wonder if she'll regret that decision later but from the way this chapter ended, I'm more worried about the information that she gave away.

Can't wait for the next one!

Thanks so much for the read!

Much love,

Gabbie

Author's Response: Hey Gabbie! I'™m so glad you're back, too!

You probably *should* be worried ;)

Do you think I should cut the glasses thing? It's just how the scene popped into my head, but you're not the first to mention it, and I don't want it to pull people out of the flow of the story. Or do you think it'™s good to let them have a bit of a chuckle there?

I think that, for the people who were back at Hogwarts while Harry, Ron, and Hermione were gallivanting through the country side on the Camping Trip of Doom, Hogwarts probably did feel like a prison. I'm glad that feeling came through.

In some ways, Astoria shocked herself in this chapter. Her self-preservation instincts are strong, but maybe the one thing that can override them is her devotion to her family. The Death Eaters betrayed her mother, and I imagine that Purebloods are very big on things like "the family honor" and avenging the dead. I think of them like the de Medicis in Italy. They don't play. According to the dictates by which she was raised, Astoria had to do *something* once she found out that Lavinia was killed by a Death Eater curse. Her father is in no state to avenge his wife, and her sister is pretty useless. So Astoria does what she always does--she handles it.

Thank you so much! It makes me so happy that you liked that exchange. It was fun to write--tricky, but fun.

Probably you should be worried about that, too. Just worry about Astoria, in general ; )

Thank YOU so much for the review!

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #29, by GingeredTea An Unwelcome Visitor

20th September 2014:
This was a really intriguing first chapter and certainly compelling enough to make me want to keep reading. I loved the beginning scene. The way you introduced Draco into the story and went onto describe him, fit the mood of the story perfectly. Everything was fantastically constructed in this chapter. :) Can't wait to read more.

Author's Response: Thank you! I really appreciate the positive feedback, and I'd love for you to read more. If you ever want to do another swap or anything, just let me know!

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #30, by whisper in the wind A Family Affair

20th September 2014:
You paint lovely pictures. I could see everything clearly in my head. 10 points to Slytherin for that! Speaking of which, I'm also a Slytherin! Small world, eh?

I love the mother/son relationship between Draco and Narcissa. Even in such a bleak world as theirs, they still have that loving bond. I wish he would run away, but I think he is doing the noble thing by staying for his family's sake. But I do hope he never shoots to kill. I want his soul to stay intact.

I can't wait to see more Ginny! I think all the pieces in this story are coming together nicely.

Author's Response: Thank you! I really appreciate that.

I didn't know you were a Slytherin! Go snakes!

I love that, too. I really wanted to explore Slytherin qualities in this, so one thing that's huge is loyalty. Gryffindors are loyal in a far-reaching way, but Slytherins are intensely loyal to a select few, often their families. So that definitely plays a big role in this story. In the Malfoys' case, it's one of their biggest redeeming qualities.

I always felt particularly bad for Draco, because even though he was unpleasant, what happens to him in the end isn't entirely his fault. He's brainwashed all his life by people he trusts, who tell him that being a Death Eater is awesome. Then, he gets assigned to kill Dumbledore, and it is *not awesome*. I think it's pretty clear that he doesn't want to do it. But he's being used to punish Lucius, who is already on thin ice with Voldemort, so he can't really risk disobeying. That scene where Dumbledore offers him the opportunity to turn around is so tragic, because the scene is cut short. He never really gets that chance to choose. (I'm not sure he could have put his trust in the Order--it would have been hard--but I do believe that if Dumbledore'd had a few more minutes to talk it over with him, it COULD have changed everything). Really, so much of what Draco wanted to do was just to protect his family, because that was *always* Goal #1 for the Malfoys. It doesn't excuse all his bullying, but I think he's still a tragic figure, nonetheless.

Heeheehee. Seriously, I'm refreshing constantly. I'm really eager to see the next chapter come up, and to see how people like the increased Ginny presence.

Thanks so much! It means a lot that you think so. And thank you SO much for reviewing!

--Penny





 Report Review

Review #31, by Gabriella Hunter The Lady of Greengrass Hall

19th September 2014:
HellO!

This is Gabbie from the forums with your review and I'm hoping that I'm not that late with this! I was trying to get rid of a cold and it was honestly kicking my butt last night and I was forced to just go to sleep and dream of cartoons and Percy Weasley.

*Ahem*

So, I really loved what you've done with this chapter. It's just as interesting as the first but maybe a bit more because of the fact that we learn more about Lavinia and what resulted in a very suspicious death. I like that when you started out this chapter, you gave more details on her backstory and I was able to get a real understanding of her motivations and her character. She seemed like a very proud, intelligent woman and I felt a bit miffed that she was never allowed to really follow her passion. It brought your world into clearer focus and is, once again, making it plain that the Wizarding world is set in a time that has passed the rest of the world by.

The back and forth that you give with the flashbacks also gave me a clearer understanding of Astoria's position. Knowing about her mother's secret life of course made her far more aware of her surroundings and the actions of others, though it makes me wonder if she would be in some sort of danger as well. If the people who murdered her mother find out about her, Astoria might be targeted next. Or at the very least, her family.

I think that Astoria is very clever but Draco is far more perceptive than she thinks. I'm certain that he's catching on to her but I want to know what she did to backstab the Death Eaters and what that would mean for the future. I hope you go into more detail in the next few chapters because I'm really curious

Astoria's thoughts on Muggles was very well-written and didn't come off as biased at all. I could understand that her reasoning was based off of what she had experienced and seen and while she doesn't care much for Muggles or Muggle-borns, it's obvious that she sees just how evil Voldemort is. She lost a mother and now she's out for revenge. I don't know how perfect that is but it's going to make for a wonderful story so I hope you request soon!

I didn't spot any CC's either so good job!

Much love,

Gabbie

Author's Response: Hey Gabbie! This is not late. This was extremely quick! I'm super impressed. I hope you're feeling better! Percy, hmm? Now that's an interesting choice. Why Percy, in particular?

I'm glad that chapter 2 is at least as interesting as chapter 1! And I'm glad that you thought the peek at Lavinia's backstory worked well. Astoria was very much her mother's protege, so I thought it was vital to understand Lavinia if one wanted to understand Astoria's upbringing. Plus, I really wanted to explore morally grey characters and, as you'll see, on the grey scale Lavinia is pretty much charcoal. But I'm really happy that you felt upset on her behalf! She may not be good, exactly, but she is interesting, and I think at least some of her motivations are pretty understandable. Some...maybe less so.

You're clever to pick up that Astoria might be in danger from multiple sides. As ever, I make no promises. But it's a good thought.

I'm really enjoying the way you're reading these two, but I won't tell you if you're right or wrong. I'll leave that up to your interpretation of the next few chapters! I *can* promise you that you'll find more detail about the backstabbing, and what that might mean if Draco were to figure things out.

I'm really glad that Astoria's views came off well! I didn't think it was reasonable that, as a Slytherin Pureblood and the daughter of a Death Eater, she'd be outraged at the way Muggles/Muggleborns were treated. After all, she's primarily out for herself and her family. However, Astoria is an unusually clear-sighted individual, so I thought she'd be able to plainly see that there were very good witches and wizards whose blood was far from pure. She isn't perfect, and I didn't want her to be. Astoria doesn't think she's a particularly good person. Maybe she isn't. But she definitely has some admirable qualities, and plenty of room for growth.


Thank you so much for your very thoughtful review! I'll definitely be re-requesting!

Thanks again, evil twin!

--Penny



 Report Review

Review #32, by whisper in the wind A Changing Tide

18th September 2014:
GROSS UGLY SOBBING ON THE TRAIN!!!

I just read this chapter on my phone in basically 2 point font. All of the emotions going through me right now...I just cannot deal. From the beginning, I had no idea where this chapter could have gone so that Astoria would end up living. The last thing I expected was for Draco to lie for her! I'm so happy you don't even understand!!!

This story is everything to me.

Author's Response: Bahaha! I'm so honored, first of all, that you'd suffer through 2 point font to read my story. And to have caused such emotional turmoil (can you tell I'm a Slytherin?)!

I am so happy that YOU are happy. That was a killer chapter to write. Draco is conflicted. At this point, even *he's* confused about why he did it. But yes. Plot twist!

I really cannot even form the words to express how delighted I am that you liked it. This review has made my...well, not just day. Possibly my week. Maybe longer! You don't even know.

Thank you so much! And thank you for review bombing me. It's the absolute best!

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #33, by whisper in the wind The Stolen Truth

18th September 2014:
OMG WHAT NO! what? what!? I don't understand what could possibly happen after this besides a quick avada kedavra. I'm freaking out here! I'm in class trying not to show any emotion (Astoria style) but inside I'm screaming lol.

Again, you're amazing! Honestly, I can't stress enough how talented you are. The back and forth between Astoria and Draco flows really well and it shows just how much chemistry they have. She intrigues him because he hasn't come across anyone like her before. I like it.

Oh, and I loved the line: "Perhaps they were discussing the remarkable freshness of their lawn!"

Author's Response: This review is the *best* thing about actually having people read your writing. I love getting to read emotional responses to the story!

Astoria would be so proud of you right now!

Thank you. A lot. I enjoy reading your stuff so much. It means a lot to get praise from someone that I think is totally awesome! I've been addicted to Tangled Web ever since I came across it.

I love their chemistry. They really challenge each other. I don't think Astoria's ever met a boy as opaque as Draco, and she's certainly a far cry from the types he's been dealing with, as you say. There's a lot of posturing and poking at the chinks in the armor, which is fun to do, but those to are definitely well-matched combatants. ; )

Hahaha! Yay! I always loved that line, but I wasn't sure that anyone else would find it funny. I'm so glad that you do!

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #34, by whisper in the wind The Malediction Perfidious

18th September 2014:
Ahh!!! It's been a long time since I've read words that actually satisfied me. I cannot get over your talent in writing. You weave the words together perfectly. I'm enjoying this story so much for the content, so it is definitely an added bonus that it's written so well.

Ginny + Astoria give me life. I've never read a story with them together before. It's intriguing. I want them to be superheros together. Or best friends. Something!!!

I'm interested in seeing what Draco intends to do with all of this information. He seems to be on the fence about this whole death eater thing.

On to the next chapter! :)

Author's Response: Oh my goodness, thank you! That really means so, so much.

Ginny + Astoria is everything. I love writing scenes with the two of them, and I am SO happy that you love them, too. In my earliest drafts, when I was still getting a feel for things, they weren't really a factor. Then I was like, "Who do you go to in order to contact the OoP?" and Ginny seemed like the obvious choice. So I put them in a room together and BOOM! They just played off each other so well that I knew there had to be more. :D

This whole "Death Eater" thing has not been good to Draco. He made a decent garden variety bully (you know, if your garden includes venomous tentacula and such), but actually killing and torturing and all the horrible things that Voldemort's followers do? Draco's a bit delicate for that. This is a boy whose how-to-deal repertoire was, "My father will hear about this!", and Lucius is no longer a playable card. He's had to do a lot of growing up in a very short time. He doesn't love being a Death Eater like he always thought he would, but he wants to live and to protect his family, and following Voldemort seems like the best way to meet those ends to him.

Thank you so much for your review!!! It really made me smile.

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #35, by whisper in the wind A Dangerous Revelation

18th September 2014:
hello! Okay, so I am constantly on the edge of my seat with every sentence. Astoria's character reminds me of Ginny's in so many ways. I love Ginny, by the way. She's my favorite character in the books, hands down. I love how Astoria is so guarded compared to the people around her and that being raised by a spy has really impacted her life in such a prominent way. I think she's going to do great things with the information that she has, and it's so believable that she would go to Ginny for all of this. They're both such strong personalities and although Astoria has chosen to trust Ginny, Ginny has to consciously make that decision. She's given Ginny quite the responsibility now and I really hope she makes the right choice.

Honestly, your writing style flows like poetry. The flashback was well placed and I could see time warping like a pensieve. I am absolutely loving all of these characters. Even your portrayal of Draco is astounding. I can sense his typical frigidness and the exhaustion from the situation of the war. He seems like he's over all this investigating for the death eaters.

I'm so glad I finally have a break from my school work to really, finally, get into this story. You are an amazing author.

Author's Response: Oh hi! Yay for surprise reviews. And I'm always excited to hear from one of my favorite writers!

I adore Ginny. She doesn't get near enough credit, because she doesn't have a huge amount of spoken lines in the books. But she's very strong, she has a sense of humor, and she won't take...ahem..."nonsense" from anyone. I admire that.

Astoria and Ginny make good foils for each other in this story, I think, because of their similarities AND because of their differences. Astoria is also strong. She wouldn't laugh at the gag stuff that Ginny learned to, growing up with 6 brothers, but they both appreciate dark, dry humor. And Astoria will put up with people's nonsense if she must, but she'll always be looking for a way to turn it back on them.

The biggest differences between Ginny and Astoria are that they have different values. Ginny values bravery and outspokenness. Astoria values cleverness and knowing when to hold your tongue. Astoria sees things less in black and white--it's all shades of grey to her--and she doesn't see herself as a particularly good person. And, of course, Astoria *is* a bit of a snob, while Ginny is pretty down to earth. I love writing scenes with the two of them because they really balance one another out nicely.

Thank you so much! Oh, I love that description. Thanks. And I'm so glad you like the portrayal of Draco. I hope you continue to like it in later chapters (although always feel free to tell me if there's something I should change)! He's a bit tricky, because I want to show character growth and such, but we are in the Deathly Hallows time period, so I can't depart too much from what's in the books. Always a tightrope act. So am DELIGHTED that you think it's going well. :D

Thank you for reading and reviewing, and for all your kind words! I hope you continue to enjoy the story.

P.S. Chapter 8 is in the queue and, if you love Ginny (and if I wrote it right), that might be a chapter you'd particularly enjoy.

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #36, by Gabriella Hunter An Unwelcome Visitor

17th September 2014:
Hello!

This is Gabbie from the forums with our swap! I am really delighted to actually have stopped by because I don't come across many Astoria Greengrass stories on the archives. I feel like she never gets much love but that might be because we don't really know much about her, other than the fact that she's Draco's wife later on.

Now, I think that we need to stop swapping brains as well because there are a lot of similarities between your Astoria and mine. Its actually pretty scary! I was really intrigued by the weight of secrets and the way you talked about her family, its almost the same as the way I've written mine. There are some differences but I think this is going to be a fun story for me to read, I like having random mind melds with other authors with the same characters! :D

Now, from the very beginning I think that I got the sense that Astoria was a very capable girl. The beginning with her mother had me a bit unsettled though, parents have a way of bending their children and scaring them with lies. Its interesting because that comes into play later and I thought that that was a smooth transition for the rest of the chapter.

I wasnt' sure what was happening at first when Astoria was putting on her act, I honestly thought that she was about to be forced into a marriage but thank goodness, that didn't happen. I was really curious to see Draco but also a bit worried, I had a feeling that the visit wasn't going to be a pleasant one. I was half right of course and Astoria's wavering loyalties can be a dangerous thing and I hope that she manages to pull things off. Draco is withdrawn and depressed here and I'm curious to know more about what he's been going through, I also like the comparisons you've made with how different he was back at Hogwarts and now. It makes his decline all the more noticeable.

I didn't spot any CC's or anything and I think you've started off really well for this story. Your story is mysterious, your characters are unique and I think that you've got some great skill. :D

Thanks for the swap!

Much love,

Gabbie

Author's Response: Hey Gabbie! Okay, I was super excited as soon as I clicked on your link, too, because I was like, "Oh, another Astoria story. Cool!" Like you say, they aren't exactly abundant and, as far as I know, I'd never run across yours before.

And then I started reading, and I was like, "Another dark, mysterious Astoria story? Even awesomer."

I, too, was a little weirded out when I read your summary. The Twilight Zone music started playing in my head. I was like...have I found my authorly doppelgänger? Isn't that supposed to be a sign of my impending doom? Am I going to die?

However, I felt like my life was probably safe once I got further in ; ) There are differences. Still, I'll totally agree with the mind-meld thing. Secrets and family issues are definitely major themes for both! It was really fun to read your take, and see all the differences and similarities!

What? Unsettling? Early childhood indoctrination? What could be worrisome about that? ;)

Oh, gosh. I think if there was an arranged marriage on top of all this we'd have to fetch the smelling salts! (Not for Astoria. For me. There are enough plot twists to keep track of as it is. Phew.) You were totally right--this isn't a pleasant social call. There will definitely be information revealed on what Draco's been through in this time. Poor morally-compromised lamb. He's been through a lot.

Thanks so much! I'm glad you think so, and I really appreciate your thoughts. Thanks for the swap!

--Penny



 Report Review

Review #37, by daliha An Unwelcome Visitor

17th September 2014:
Chilling chapter, I wonder what was the secret Lavinia Greengrass spoke of in the begin? How did she die? Why are the Greengrasses under investigation by the Dark Lord? besides my questions I loved this chapter the description was very well done, and you nailed Draco Malofy's personality, and I loved Astoria as well. this story most definitely deserve more reviews than what it has.

Author's Response: So glad to have chilled you! Thanks.

Those are all good questions. Astoria certainly wants to know the answers. Perhaps she'll find out ;)

I am so excited that you think I nailed Draco's personality! Thank you! I tried really hard to capture his voice and describe him the right way, and I'm so glad that you think that it worked!

Thank you! Hopefully more people will stumble across it with time (that's always the hope, isn't it?) I'm really glad you think so, and I'm super grateful to everyone who has read and reviewed so far!

Thanks so much for swapping with me! It was fun!

--Penny





 Report Review

Review #38, by pointless_proclamations An Unwelcome Visitor

17th September 2014:
Dear Penny,

For the review swap:

Holy cow, Penny! That was gripping! You managed to keep me so interested throughout the entire chapter. I am intrigued. I am captivated. I must continue reading on. I need to know more.

I admire your descriptive writing abilities. The images you've invoked in my mind have a haunting sort of clarity.

What a character you've written Astoria to be! I already love her and empathise with her. The way she treats Filly speaks volumes about her character. In fact, every single thing she did in this chapter seemed to hold relevance. It's organised writing, if you'll accept that term. It flowed well. Nothing looked out of place. It's beautiful work.

I felt chills down my spine reading this. It seems so real. You are positively brilliant.

Cheers,
Em :D

Author's Response: Hey Em!

Oh my goodness, thank you so much! What a compliment! The best thing anyone could ever tell me is that they wanted to keep reading :D

I am so glad that you already love Astoria! That's the other best thing you could tell me :) She's my baby--my darling, morally ambiguous baby (but, like you say, she treats Elves well, so that's a moral vote in her favor!). I totally accept the term "organized writing", and I'm delighted to have garnered it. Thank you.

I'm smiling so big. Nothing's better than giving someone chills. Even if that totally does sound creepy ;)

Thank you so much, Em! You are so kind. I loved swapping with you. We should do it again some time!

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #39, by adluvshp An Unwelcome Visitor

7th September 2014:
Hello! Here for the Slytherin Review Exchange!

I quite enjoyed this first chapter. It seems like a very interesting story and you started it out well. The plot has been set, the setting ready, and the characters introduced very nicely. I like Astoria's characterisation, and the way you've portrayed Draco from her eyes too. Their interaction was interesting to read, and I liked it. The whole plot concept itself is intriguing, and all in all I enjoyed this very much. I'd love to read further and see what happens next so I'm going to add the story to my reading list and favourite it too =)

It's a great start so keep going!

-AD
(AditiDraco95)

P.S. I noticed you set the era for the story as "Hogwarts" but this seems to be a Post-Hogwarts story so I'd suggest correcting that to avoid misleading the readers =)

Author's Response: Hi AD!

Thank you! I'm glad you enjoyed it. And that you were intrigued. :D I'd love *for* you to read further and see what happens next. Totally honored to be on your reading list, and to be favorited!

And I shall definitely keep going. New chapter should be coming soon.

Oh, and about your postscript: the story is actually during the Hogwarts era. It begins during Easter Holidays in DH. However, you aren't the first one to think that, and I thank you for mentioning it. I had meant to go in and make an adjustment in that first chapter, to clarify, and I forgot to do it. Thanks for reminding me! I appreciate the CC :)

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #40, by MadiMalfoy A Family Affair

6th September 2014:
Hello once again! :)

You have returned with another fabulous chapter! Ugh, the literature and history nerd in me is basically going crazy with your Shakespeare references galore and family history!! I think you've really highlighted the depth of Astoria's worry for her father's health, mentally and physically, along with Filly's worry also. It's truly saddening to watch a family member wither away before your very eyes and you can't do anything about it. You've captured that despair and torture very well in Astoria's incessant need to alphabetize and organize everything because she needs to focus on something other than her father's worsening condition and the war going on outside. The (lucid!!) history lesson given to Astoria from her father was so touching, I absolutely loved it! Your dedication to being historically accurate is phenomenal as well!

Moving on to the short scene in Malfoy Manor, let me just say THANK YOU. Because all we're given in the canon-verse is that supposedly everyone in the Manor was on lockdown by Voldemort's orders. So I really enjoyed getting to see the aftermath of the trio escaping and how that affects Draco and his family because his mother wants him to get out right now before Voldemort comes but Draco knows he's already in too deep, that he's already lost. Truly tragic. That last line really summed it up well--the bully school boy was gone, and he had been replaced with a hardened-too-young man who was willing to kill in order to save himself and his family.

WONDERFUL IMPECCABLE FLAWLESS PERFECT AMAZING TERRIFIC FABULOUS SUPERB CHAPTER!! :) ♥

Come back anytime, please! :)
~MadiMalfoy x

Author's Response: Hello, hello!

I'm so glad you liked it! Yay for history & literature nerdiness! I loved working in the Shakespeare bits, and I'm especially happy that you enjoyed the family history. I love getting to include those details.

Thank you! It's sad to write about Felix's situation. It puts a lot of pressure on his daughters, and, of course, Filly. I think it explains a lot about why Astoria acts the why she does. It both hardens and softens her. She's tougher because she's had to bear up under the weight of handling the family matters--obviously Daphne is just running away from the responsibility. But I also like writing Felix in, because we get to see Astoria's softer side. And a HUGE SMILE that you loved the history lesson. Felix is a very different kind of personality than those I've been writing for this story so far. It was a challenge to try to capture his voice, but it was fun, because he's just so warm, and I'm glad you think it came out well. And thanks--I really try to be accurate, so I'm glad you noticed! :D

Thank YOU! Because I am so touched to see someone really care for that scene. It was one of my favorites, just because I felt like it was so important. Like, Draco goes from making all these unimpressive attempts to kill Dumbledore, to hesitating when he actually gets the chance to kill him, and then, when he has the chance to turn Harry in, he doesn't. But when we next see him, at the Battle, all that hesitation is gone. He's out to stop Harry, and he's seemingly committed now. Why? When I really started looking at Draco, as a character, I realized that it was a change in his trajectory--a deviation from the norm--so something had to cause it. And it didn't take long to think of what it could have been. Really, after such a massive failure, it's a surprise that the Malfoys all survived. If he cared about his family at all, he wouldn't be able to step one toe out of line. In that light, I think his actions at the Battle of Hogwarts make more sense. Or I hope so, at least.

Thank you so, so much for this incredibly kind review. It really helps! I'll definitely send in another request when I post the next chapter, which (fingers crossed) will be soon! It's almost done. Just a few tricky pieces to iron out.

Thanks again!

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #41, by MadiMalfoy A Changing Tide

20th July 2014:
Well well well, some things really did happen, didn't they!?

This was quite the chapter, I must say. It was on the long end, but it was necessary I think to have everything in there that you did. Who knew Draco Malfoy had a good heart? *scoffs* And Astoria! Ugh, have I told you how much I love her characterization?! She's so strong and determined not to go down without a fight! Because you have her almost saying Voldemort's name three times, that alone conveys just how unafraid she is of him, something which Draco supports with his statements.

And their little dynamic is so great in the middle! When Astoria has dropped all fronts and is just begging Draco, showing how desperate she really is, and she picks up on his scent, that just makes me want more! Keeping them a few inches apart and then separating them instantly because of a visitor is so frustrating! Draco being unable to comprehend why he says she's innocent foreshadows something for the future!

I'm so excited to find out what happens next!! :)
~MadiMalfoy x

Author's Response: Hey there!

Well, some things really DID, I suppose! ;)

I know it was a little long--I was worried about that--but I'm very glad that you agree that it was necessary. I couldn't find any good place to cut it that wouldn't ruin all that built up tension.

I see your scoff and I raise you a doubtful snort ;) Haha. I, too, wouldn't really trust the idea of Draco's "good heart" at this juncture. He's done a good thing, but *he* doesn't even know his reasons yet, and we can only guess. I agree that saying Draco has a good heart doesn't sound quite right. It would be premature, and would gloss over too much. I *would* say that I think he is capable of good, but has been deeply entrenched in cowardice for a long time. This, at least, was a non-cowardly act. It's growth, but the poor dear has a rather long way to go before I'll be calling him a paragon of any sort.

:D I am beaming! There is no other word to describe it. I always appreciate some Astoria love! She's like my child--my lying, mistrustful baby. Thank you so much. I am so, so happy to hear that you like her :D

Astoria is definitely brave--much braver than she realizes. And she's defiant. I think that Astoria has a little better handle than a lot of people on the fact that Voldemort is, ultimately, a person. He's a horrible, powerful person, but still ultimately a man. But also, she's a Pureblood. She knows a lot of Death Eater families and has known them all her life. For her, the Death Eaters aren't this distant, malevolent force, nor is Voldemort. As she says, she would be terrified if she actually had to face him. But, as Draco points out, she still wouldn't just curl up into a heap and wait to die. And, being that kind of person, I don't think she'd put much stock in the whole avoiding-the-name taboo. She wouldn't find it sensible.

Heehee! Thank you. I am SO glad that you liked it. That part took a lot of tweaking, but I was happy with the way it turned out.

Muahahahaha. Sorry. But never fear, there *will* certainly be something in the future. All sorts of character growth and plot twists and--possibly--romance, ahead ;)

Thank you so, so much for the review! I really appreciate your thoughts, and I'll be sure to re-request when I see an opening!

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #42, by Lululuna A Family Affair

12th July 2014:
Finally all caught up! :)

Haha, aw, I love how sweet Astoria is with the house elves, from helping them find clothes to leaving messes for them to clean up out of pity. It's sweet and also fits her personality in how she's quite resourceful and notices the little details, even if it's as simple as keeping the elves happy.

So I actually loved hearing Felix's thoughts on Muggles! It was really an interesting interpretation of an educated (though slightly mad and undisciplined) opinion on Muggles and literature, and as weird as it was the cat analogy did make sense to me. I also love the mentions of a wizard sponsoring a production of AMND because it's my favourite play and this fits so well with all the fantastic elements in the play. I love seeing how wizards could impact history with those little anecdotes.

I'm glad Astoria found a way to keep the books. It almost seems worth it despite the danger if they give her dad some comfort.

Ah, poor Draco - I liked seeing the impact of Harry's escape on him and how it changed the way he would think about his duty. I wonder if Astoria had an impact on Draco which explains why he showed some hesitancy to convict Harry despite disliking him, and so Astoria's influence fits quite well with canon here.

I can't wait to see what happens next!! :) I love this story!! ♥

House Cup 2014 Review

Author's Response: Astoria is sweet to the Elves, and it's one of the things I really like about her. The whole House Elf issue always reminded me of the American South. Like, I've never seen/read THE HELP, but I think it talked about this? Like, how you had African American women who worked in the house and raised white children, whose mothers were usually played a much smaller part in their upbringing. And the white children, as they grew up, had three responses to that, more or less: (1) they grew up, put it out of their minds, and continued to be racist (2) loved their nanny but were racist against all OTHER African Americans, or (3) they cared about the woman that raised them and thus actually grew to see an entire race of people differently.

I mean, that's an oversimplification, probably, but that's the idea. And I always thought House Elves would be the same way. You'd have people who treated them like dirt, or people who only cared about the ones that they knew, or people who cared about all of them because they had grown up in an Elf's care. Astoria falls toward that third approach, probably now more than ever, as Filly is pretty much the only dependable person in her life at present.

I'm so glad you liked hearing Felix's thoughts! Oh, the cat analogy! Writing Felix is really fun when he's *there*. Your description of him--educated, mad, and undisciplined--makes me SO happy, because that is just what I was going for. And I'm glad that you liked the Shakespeare references. I feel like Shakespeare + wizardry would be such an amazing theatrical experience, and also kind of disastrous. : )

Draco and Astoria both have sort of compromised their personalities lately. Astoria is so pragmatic, usually she'd have had those books destroyed. However, her desire to keep her family together outweighs her natural inclinations.

As far as Draco goes, I always felt like he was such a human character. I wondered, at the end of the 7th book, why the change? Like, he saves Harry's life, and then chapters later he's in the Room of Requirement hunting him down. Why?! What happened to that positive character development? To me, that meant that whatever happened to him as a result of showing mercy must have been pretty awful.

And I'm also delighted that you think it fits well with canon! I had hoped so. I saw it as a gradual ramping up of Draco's better instincts: he doesn't kill Dumbledore, but he doesn't *commit* to not killing him. To go straight from there to lying about Harry is a pretty big jump. I mean, he hates Harry, and Harry hates him. Neither of them has ever done each other a single good turn, and DRACO of all people is the first to break that tradition. Draco has everything to gain from Harry being caught--the war ends (or is more likely to fizzle out), he gets mega props, his family moves firmly to the Dark Lord's good side, which would mean their safety. But he doesn't choose that. In my version, I think his saving Astoria had a lot to do with his helping Harry. For a while there, he sort of built some merciful momentum. Obviously it doesn't last through to that scene in the Room of Requirement, but at least that side is there.

Thank you so much for all the reviews! My smile when I saw them was so huge--like, it covered half my face. :D

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #43, by Lululuna A Changing Tide

11th July 2014:
Back again! :)

Ahh, Draco defended Astoria! I'm so proud of him haha although granted for their future relationship it would be a bit difficult if she had been killed by Greyback. The moments where she thought she was going to die were so terrifying but excellently written of course, and I liked the little details like how she was thinking about her nails of all things. In a way I almost thought Draco was too slow and should have spoken up before Greyback was practically seconds away from sinking his teeth into her but at least he did in the end. I'm pretty sure that he won't see any real repercussions about it since he's still alive at the time of the battle of Hogwarts but I'm a little worried for both of them now.

Thinking about Astoria's poor father being killed and tortured was so sad and came across well. I certainly felt empathy for him and Daphne through Astoria's fears about them even in the face of her own possible death.

I really hope that Draco is helping Astoria because he legitimately wants to be a good person and not just because he thinks she's a babe, however. I think the attraction is definitely there but should take a back seat to helping her for the sake of doing the kind thing. It almost reminds me of Snape and Lily in a way even though Astoria and Draco are very different both morally and with where they stand.

Can't wait to keep reading! ♥

House Cup 2014 Review

Author's Response: Yay, Draco! Someone give that boy some positive feedback!

My lips are sealed in regards to their future relationship, but I will say that the story would have been much shorter if Greyback had made Astoria into an appetizer.

Thank you so much! As far as the nails go, when you're panicked, your brain sometimes kicks into overdrive. For me, at least, that means I'm frantically noticing all sorts of things and my mind will go down odd little rabbit holes and then I'll be yelling at myself like HELLO, EMERGENCY HERE! IT DOES NOT CURRENTLY MATTER THAT THIS CLOUD IS INTERESTINGLY SHAPED! I guess it's some sort of flight or fight, heightened observation thing, but it always amuses me (after the fact).

Draco *was* rather slow about it, wasn't he? Do you think that's a timing thing I should fix, or just something you wanted to yell at him over?

I think worrying for both of them is an appropriate response. We know he's still ALIVE at the Battle of Hogwarts...but "alive" and "alright" are two very different concepts.

I'm glad that came across. Astoria's loyalty to her family is a huge driving factor of her character. It's certainly one of her better qualities.

I don't think Draco *knows* why he helped Astoria. Although I'm really loving the image of Draco calling her a babe, and what Astoria's response to THAT would be--bahaha. He certainly is attracted to her, and I think that's sort of what he focuses on, because it's easier. If he can bundle all the layers of what he's thinking safely into the, "She was just really attractive" box, then he just gets to call it a lapse of judgement than any hormonal teenager might have. He doesn't like losing control or being convinced to do anything he hadn't expected to, so he'd like to lean on the simplest explanation possible. However, being convinced to do something crazy just because he thought someone was hot would be rather out of character for such a controlled person. I think it is safe to say that there's a more to it than that. Even as he does imply, for instance, that he find her eyes very pretty, he also talks about her strength of will.

Draco is not generally impulsive, and he isn't one to just let things go. I think we'll get to hear more of his thoughts on the subject ;)

Thanks again for the reviews! I appreciate hearing your thoughts SO much!

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #44, by Lululuna The Stolen Truth

11th July 2014:
Hi again Penny! :)

Gah, it was so chilling to find out that Draco's intentions with the interview, or purpose, are to lead to the execution of Astoria and her family. I liked seeing that he was at least a little bothered by this and not entirely caught up in "the game" as it's quite horrific. I'm really worried about her now as somehow my mind never went that far into the future for her fate but especially with the ending it looks like he's close to figuring everything out.

I'm still so curious to learn more about her family and finding out more details about her father, the sort of man he is and was and the suspicions raised about him was really fascinating.

Ahaha, so I know it's a serious conversation but I was quite amused by the bit of dangerous banter, like when Astoria was talking about the Weasleys' lawn. :P So witty, and Draco's sassy insult towards their house made me laugh though he's quite obnoxious.

By the way, I also really like how the Greengrasses have eastern/asian heritage! I'd love to learn more about that as well and how their culture might impact their identity as wizards. Very interesting to see diverse characters within the story. :)

Another great chapter - I can't wait to see what happens next with the Legilimency and beyond the parlour. :P

House Cup 2014 Review

Author's Response: OOoh! Chilling! I like it!

...that might not be a healthy response. Oh well :D

Draco would like to be caught up in "the game". I think that Astoria's cleverness allows him to enjoy it as an academic exercise--ferreting out her secrets (no pun intended) is sort of a chess match. He can think less about how horrible it all is, up until the very end when he's being forced to face the consequences, and it begins to trouble him even earlier. Astoria is obviously a case he hasn't run into before. He's used to dealing with "innocent" people who are self-serving and horrid and, while innocent of the crimes he's accusing them of, they more or less deserved what was coming to them. That's most of what he's been dealing with, and judging by his current levels of self-loathing, it bothers him a lot. So Astoria, who is *actually* guilty, but for whom he has some respect, sort of changes things for him.

Astoria's family are an interesting bunch, for sure. Her mom's a spy and her dad was associated with the Unspeakables/Department of Mysteries. She definitely has secret-keeping in her blood.

Haha, I cannot tell you how happy I am that you liked that part! I was hoping to break things up with a little snatch of humor. It's one of those things where, looking back on it, you get to see how well they match up to one another, and you can imagine a lot of future conversation between them that would be quite fun. You know, if Draco could ease up on the evil and Astoria could, like, not die. Both important stipulations in moving forward with any relationship ; )

And I am ELATED that you like the Greengrasses heritage. As you know by now, of course, since I'm answering these in reverse order, they are actually Chinese. Yay diversity!

And I'd like to go ahead and apologize about the Legilimancy. And the parlour. And the werewolf. Writing is so weird. You write these characters, and then you make bad things happen to them. It's like having children, and you love them, but instead of, like, working to give them stability and comfort, you throw rocks at them and put snakes in their shoes. Something is wrong about that, right?

I probably sound crazy again. Meh, oh well ; )

Thank you again for your thoughts and opinions!!!

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #45, by Lululuna The Malediction Perfidious

11th July 2014:
Hi Penny! :) So glad to have the chance to come back and review bomb you! :D I really missed this story!

I liked seeing things from Draco's POV and how materialistic he is with judging Astoria's home against his own. It's very in character with Draco from canon since he was obsessed with what he had that others didn't but now this is a more subdued reaction where he measures possessions in terms of all he has lost. I thought the breaking china set was an amazing metaphor for Draco's loss of identity and his life under the Dark Lord.

The Curse that Lavinia cast on her daughter is so horrific, yet so brilliant on your part. It fits so well and adds this whole, bewildering, horrifying dynamic to their mother-daughter relationship and the secrets which made them emotionally close. The idea that Lavinia didn't trust her daughter or wanted to punish her in the rare case that she would tell the secret...well, it really changes the way Astoria can look back on her, and I wonder if it will change her character in the future as well. The corruption of Astoria's memories of her mother being motherly were so heartbreaking too with how Lavinia was just cuddling and hugging her partly to cast the Curse.

I absolutely loved the last two lines and the alliance forming between Ginny and Astoria. Of course they can't quite be friends yet but I like the partnership between them and how much they have in common and can read one another - it's really interesting to see develop.

Great chapter, darling! :)

House Cup 2014 Review

Author's Response: Hello you, too, hon! Thank you so, so much! I cannot tell you how excited I was to see your reviews today.

Oh, Draco, you have so much potential...but you're such a jerk, like, 95% of the time. I think it was Elphaba&Boyfriend who actually gave me the suggestion of having him judge her house/possessions, because I was initially having a little trouble breaking into his POV. After that, it flowed pretty naturally. It's like a recipe--just add bitter materialism! And thank you! The china was one of my favorite details, so am really glad you enjoyed it. You're totally right--his response to Astoria's possessions is much more subdued. He once would have been looking so that he could lord it over her, how much better Malfoy Manor was. Now he's just looking because he's used to noticing these things, even though it makes him unhappy. He certainly doesn't gain any joy out of it.

Thank you. The curse is definitely horrific. I think it's safe to say that Astoria's family is totally screwed up, and the fact that she doesn't really know WHY Lavinia did it, that she can't confront her because she's dead, makes it all the worse. It truly changes everything. But it *was* important. Before, she told her secret to the Order of the Phoenix to *avenge* her mother. Now, anything she does won't be for her mother, but for herself.

And ugh! I know! It is awful, even for me, the way it changes that memory of her mother! I'm so sorry! I mean, I'm glad I did it, but I'm sorry!

However, perhaps there will be more to that side of the story...

Ginny and Astoria's dealings with each other are some of my favorite bits. They each give as good as they get, and it's a very different vibe from when Astoria spars with Draco. Lighter. Besides, she could definitely use some alliances, and personally, their willingness to ply me with chocolates is what I look for most in an ally. It only makes sense.

Thank you so, so, so, so much for all the reviews! You are the best :D

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #46, by MadiMalfoy The Stolen Truth

23rd May 2014:
Hi again! :)

Well, wasn't this chapter just exciting?! Draco finally cracked Astoria and now her secret is out in the open...dun dun dun! Anywho, a great chapter!

I really enjoyed how developed you made Draco's dig into Astoria's psyche--if it had happened very quickly it wouldn't have fit very well with the pace of the story so far, so good job on keeping it until the end of the chapter! Slowly revealing all of the chinks and cracks in Astoria's armor was a brilliant idea and gives us even more background information on her!

Essentially, quite the mentally fatiguing chapter that ended with discord. I love it! Re-request for the next chapter whenever you'd feel like. :)
~MadiMalfoy x

Author's Response: SO sorry for taking so long to respond! I really didn't realize how long this review had been sitting here without an answer!!

I'm SO glad that you found the chapter exciting. And thank you for your comment on the pacing. It was tricky, and I worked hard on pulling it together in a way that worked. I love the moments where I do get to peel aside Astoria's "armor", like you say. She's spent so much of the story with who she really is hidden that it excites me when I get to reveal the things that are true.

I feel like "mentally fatiguing" is an excellent way to describe this chapter. I'm sure Astoria would wholeheartedly agree. I must admit, the following chapter is probably much more *emotionally* fatiguing, but hopefully equally as exciting. My sincerest apologies for taking so long in responding. I am absolutely delighted--just sooo happy--to hear that you loved it, and I will certainly re-request when I see an opening in your review thread. Your thoughts are truly appreciated!

Thank you again,

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #47, by MadiMalfoy The Malediction Perfidious

2nd May 2014:
Well hi there! It's been quite a long time, but this chapter was so huge I had to start all over again to remember what happened so I could give you a good review! :)

Anywho, wow. This was a phenomenal chapter. The characterization of Draco and Astoria and Ginny and Madame Pomfrey are spot-on and very well-developed! I liked the conversation between Madame Pomfrey and Astoria--it shows us a different side of Madame Pomfrey we've never really seen and a softer side of Astoria that she hides behind her mask of apathy. The twist with her mother casting the curse on her definitely puts a wrench in her life, doesn't it? Flawless plot device and way of putting it in. I loved the idea of her burn being in the shape of a coiled snake; it's unique and very symbolic.

The beginning scene definitely has some good (if relatively unnoticeable) foreshadowing. Draco and Astoria are becoming less relaxed with the situation as things get closer and closer to the truth. So exciting!!

Such a great chapter, I can't wait for more! Feel free to re-request at your leisure. :)
~MadiMalfoy x

Author's Response: First off, my sincere apologies, because it has taken me WAY too long to respond to this, and it is such a kind review! Finals, Maymester...excuses excuses.

Haha, this is a pretty long chapter, and I truly appreciate your going to all that effort.

Ohmygoodness, thank you! I really enjoyed writing this part. All the scenes with Draco are fun, because of the tension, but I really enjoy the bits where I get to write the real Astoria. With Draco, she's all Ice Queen--Conceal, Don't Feel, Don't Let it Show (Sorry, I had to ;) ). I love getting to reveal glimpses of what she's like "behind the mask", as you say.

And you're absolutely right about Madame Pomfrey showing a different side here. I hope it wasn't too OoC, but I figured that in the books when we see her, she's usually patching up crazy kids who've gone off and done some fool thing and are likely to be doing more fool things immediately, so she's a bit more strict and harsh. Astoria, on the other hand, has just been through something very traumatic at the hands of her own family, and I thought that might crack even a seasoned nurse a bit.

Hahaha, a definite wrench! Thank you! By the way, I think that is my favorite way that anyone has described the curse. It does change a lot of things--Astoria had a sort of hero worship for her mother, and now she has to reconsider all that. She has a strong family focus, but, as time will show, her family is pretty messed up. No shortage of issues among the Purebloods!

And it *is* close to the truth, now! Excitement is coming!

Thanks so much for this lovely review!

--Penny



 Report Review

Review #48, by Verytaleteller A Changing Tide

9th April 2014:
You have got yourself a new reader. Hooked from the start.

The whole idea of the story is fascinating, with Mrs Greengrass having been a spy. I like how you gave shape to and defined all the main characters in such a short time. Also, I think you're doing a fabulous job with the conversations in this story. Not only the cutting comments your characters hash out, but also the way you describe their every uncomfortable shift in their chairs, every hint of fire in their eyes... Ah, I love it.

I share Draco's thoughts on Astoria; she's captivating, and she and the situations she finds herself in keep surprising me. There is no doubt about the outcome of this story - everyone knows Astoria and Draco will get together in he end - but that's fine, as how it will all go down is still unclear.

The old blood magic thing with the snake scar was awesome.
I now sound like a psychopath. Oh well.

Astoria associating with Ginny is something I've never read about before, and I like it. You don't make it sound improbable at all. As to my speculations what will happen next chapter... I'll keep that to me, as I'm much more interested in what you came up with, heheheh.

Merrily awaiting the next chapter ;D

Author's Response: Hello!

I am so excited to have a new reader! Welcome to the evil lair, with drama and intrigue and morally questionable protagonists!

Heehee, thank you! Lavinia's backstory is a lot of fun to work in. You haven't heard the last from her. And I really appreciate your kind words about the conversations! That's so encouraging. I always want to make sure those are just right.

The descriptions are the hardest part--I'm a fairly oblivious person, and Astoria notices EVERYTHING, so I have to think very differently to write her. So I'm really, really happy to hear that you're enjoying them.

Oh, and thank you! I'm fond of the snake scar curse, too. Which...does sound sort of weird, doesn't it? I guess we can both sound like psychopaths. Plenty of room for crazies around here!

I actually love writing Astoria's associations with Ginny, and I'm glad you're in favor. I don't know when it came to me that it was going to be part of the story, but it's always seemed right to me.

See, now I am even MORE curious as to what your speculations are. No fair!

Thanks so much for reading and reviewing! I'm merrily writing the next chapter, evil laughter and all. I hope you'll enjoy it!

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #49, by monstrosity A Changing Tide

31st March 2014:
Here for the review swap!

I was initially just going to review the first chapter (me being the laziest person in the world) but I started reading and I er, how do I put this politely? I WANT MORE!

I just love the whole grey situation in the story. You have two young people, both in a world where they are supposed to become adults and face horrors so soon. Yet they are smart and are able to think for themselves and question the values they are made to conform to. Astoria is obviously a more independent and renegade person than Draco due to the death of her mother and the ideals that her mother instilled within her. Draco initially comes across as a devout follower of the Dark Lord as well as a highly talented wizard.

However, within the short span of six chapters I can se character development in both of them. Astoria becomes a bit more relaxed after Draco reads her mind. She's no longer as well maintained and rigid as before. We get to see the real Astoria in action, with her guards somewhat lowered. As for Draco, he sort of develops a spine and us readers get to know a bit more about the things he thinks about. He's scared and a tiny bit confused as to what he's doing. He also hates people treating him as a weakling because of his age and demeanor. I can only imagine what a blow not being able to kill Dumbledore must have been for him, although I doubt he could have been able to live with himself if he had carried out the task.

Moving on from your brilliant protagonists, I really like how you introduce characters really subtly. For example, Snape coming in to heal Astoria where all you had to mention was the oily black hair and I knew who you were talking about. Your writing style is brilliant, it flows wonderfully. The use of high and polished language between Draco and Astoria clearly shows how forcedly civil the conversation is. The descriptions are gorgeous, my favourite one being the one of Draco's eyes *snickers*. Comparing Astoria's to water (first the Lake then a tide and so forth) are unusual and absolutely delightful for me to picture in my head. Sigh, you are so good at this. Please tell me that you write or are planning to write professionally. The world really needs to read stuff like this.

Oh and before I forget, thank you for making Astoria not the perfect spy in the world. I mean, I've read stories where these young kids are just brilliant at spying and know exactly what to do when. They're like these super sleuth robots or something. I really liked the whole wand mess up and the fact that Astoria does get scared for her dad's life. It makes her more realistic and relatable.

I sincerely hope that the next chapter will be up soon. I'm going to favourite the story so that I don't miss any updates. Thank you so much for writing such a wonderful story for me to read and review!

Author's Response: Hey! Sorry for the long wait on this response. Honestly, I appreciated your review so much that I wanted to really respond to it properly, and I fell into the "perfect chapter" trap. You know, when you put off writing your chapter because you feel like you're too tired/other excuses to write it well? I don't know if it happens to you, but it definitely does to me. Anyway, eventually I was like, "Okay, now I'm just procrastinating. Have some coffee and answer your reviews, child!" So, I did.

I am SO excited about this review. I couldn't stop smiling :D No, literally, my face is tired from excessive grinning. First off, the fact that you ended up reading it all the way through? That's like the best thing that you could tell me. Thank you so much!

I am delighted that you like the "greyness" of the story. That's what I really wanted to write--a story where people were complicated, where you don't always know what the "right" choice is. And I definitely wanted clever protagonists who would be aware of the nuances of their situation and could critically think about the difficulties they are navigating.

Astoria definitely comes into her own in this past chapter, and I'm glad that you made a note of it. I'm excited for people to see the real Astoria, which so far we've only caught glimpses of in flashbacks. But you're exactly right. Before, she was very controlled. The fact that she could maintain her composure and lie cooly says a lot about her, but not as much as her subsequent actions will, now that she's freed from having to pretend.

And Draco DID grow a spine! A little bit! Aren't you proud? ;) I really enjoy writing him, because he's interesting. We know the things he's done, but why did he do them? There's a lot of room for interpretation and exploration there that doesn't exist when writing the main trio.

Yay! I think you are the first person to mention Snape's cameo. I love including those little easter egg details.

And thank you for liking Astoria, even though she isn't a perfect spy. I mean, I love Astoria, and I wish she could always win at everything, but you're right--it isn't realistic. She's a better spy than anyone else her age would be, but she's also human, and 16, and dealing with some very difficult challenges. Plus, I wanted to really drive home that, beneath the often-icy exterior, she truly cares for her family.

Also, thank you for the myriad compliments sprinkled throughout this review, which have left me with ALL the warm-fuzzies in the world. I feel like a bunny slipper that's just come out of the dryer. :D Thank you so much for taking time to write this, which is definitely one of the loveliest reviews I have ever received. And just more thank you's, in general. Imagine thousands of them being tossed at you like handfuls of confetti. That? That miniature party right there? Those are my thanks ;)

--Penny


 Report Review

Review #50, by Didi An Unwelcome Visitor

29th March 2014:
Oooh, I just discovered this, and I have to say, I LOVE the tone, the voice. I love how they speak as if they're on Downton Abbey (but a lot more sinister) despite the fact that it is modern day; it seems so perfectly pureblood.

Astoria seems like such an interesting character, all intelligent and filled with secrets, just like her mother.

I have never read a Draco/Astoria before, but this seems like it's going to get really interesting! :)

Author's Response: Why HELLO!

I'm very glad to hear that you've discovered it! And I'm excited that you like it. I enjoy writing the tone in that sort of old, high class style. I figured that Pureblood wizards would be like that--very formal, a little bit stuck in the past. I mean, regular wizards are running around using candles and quills and carriages, so if you pride yourselves on being, for lack of a better term, the wizardy-est, then I figure you do them one better and retain outdated speech patterns. Plus, I do love that cold, sinister element that you mention.

And I'm kind of biased, but I do think it gets pretty interesting. I hope you continue to enjoy it. Thanks for reading and reviewing!

--Penny


 Report Review
If this is your story and you wish to respond to reviews, please login

<Previous Page   Jump:     Next Page>