Reading Reviews for Rule Breaker
  
561 Reviews Found

Review #26, by Beeezie The Quidditch Cup

10th July 2014:
Yeah, Quidditch can definitely be tough to write. I think you did a great job, though!

So much of this chapter was Quidditch, and I don't have much to say one way or the other about it (other than what I've already said), so this probably will be a bit of a shorter review. (Which, as a Ravenclaw, I hope you will forgive me for. :P)

I really liked the way Hermione reacted to Theo's revelation. The cold shoulder is completely, 100% appropriate. I also generally liked the way her friends reacted to it. I can, unfortunately, see Ron advocating forgiveness, because Ron has made some pretty poor choices over the course of the books. I would have liked to see a little more outrage from Harry, though - he's always tended to take that sort of thing really seriously, and it seemed a bit out of character for him to be so mellow and stoic about it.

Oh - this is related to the last chapter, but since I forgot to mention it then, I thought I'd mention it now. I was interested that Garrett was probably the least hostile of all of her Slytherin friends thus far, especially since, IIRC, Theo mentioned that Garrett was his best friends in one of the first chapters. I'd actually pegged Garrett to be the one to talk to her civilly if anyone would, though I have no idea why.

Good chapter! I'm sad I'm nearing the end. :(

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello once again!

I'm glad you think I wrote the Quidditch scene well! I pretty much hate writing Quidditch. I feel repetitive and boring and awful. :P I'm glad you liked Ron's reaction, and I'll tweak the other ones to make more sense. ;) I really need to balance my explanations of the Slytherins and Gryffindors thoughts/personalities/etc. I keep falling too far to one side and not giving the other enough attention. Dang!

Thanks again!
--Emily


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Review #27, by Beeezie The Grounds for Mistrust

10th July 2014:
Hmm. I can see where Draco is coming from with that theory, and I'm sure that it will prove right, but I still think that you're skating over it a bit too much. There are plenty of other reasons for them to want to attack Hogsmeade - to hurt students, to get back at them for the McDougal and Boot arrests, or even just because. I mean, the Death Eaters do a lot of terrible things just because they think it's fun. Maybe you could add in something about not many people being hurt/killed, or something else that makes her feel like there was another motive?

More importantly, though:

Ooof. Poor Hermione. That is not a fun thing to discover about someone you care about. Unlike his other theory, though, the minute Draco suggested that Theo had ratted him out, it felt true to me. And as he expanded on his theory, that certainty only grew. We'd seen shades of that possessiveness from Theo in the past, and I can absolutely see him ratting out Draco. He'd always disliked him, and he definitely came from a family and a culture where life was not viewed as particularly sacred.

(Sidenote, though - wasn't Boot part of the DA in OotP? If so, wouldn't he at least know where the Room of Requirement was?)

It also really illustrated one of the most important differences between Theo and Draco: where Theo was willing to go behind Hermione's back and try to warn her best friend away from her, Draco was willing to step back when she told him that she needed to talk to Theo alone. He wasn't happy about it, and he cautioned her to be ready to defend herself, but ultimately? He stepped back.

I love that. You've done that a few times now in really noticeable ways, and I especially value it because I think that the cultural narrative in this day and age is often to idealize behavior like Theo's, as though it's only proof that the person cares. It's not okay, and having Draco as a counterpoint really makes that clear. As, of course, does Hermione herself: You don't get to make that choice, indeed.

Great chapter!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hi!

I'm definitely going to flesh out Draco's Hogsmeade-attack theory so that it doesn't seem so "of COURSE that's why!" As for his Theo-theory (which sounds awesome), that sucked for me to write. I didn't want Theo to turn out that way, but he wrote himself, and by the time that this chapter happened, his path was set, if that makes sense. :/

(Great point about Boot! I always forget he was ever mentioned in canon...)

I absolutely love that you pointed out the difference between Theo's and Draco's treatment of Hermione. I really wanted Hermione to come across as strong and independent. That's why you don't see many displays of affection between her and Draco. They're more reserved, quieter about their love. Ultimately, Hermione WANTS to be with Draco, but she can definitely still take care of herself, and I wanted him to be okay with that. I'm glad that came across!

Thanks again for all the advice!

--Emily


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Review #28, by Beeezie Tales of Trials

10th July 2014:
Oh, dear. I just realized how close to the end I'm getting. :(

Anyway.

I liked this chapter, too. I think the more recent ones have probably been the most fraught with difficulties, because they necessarily align so closely with events from DH. However, as I said before, I think that you've done an excellent job with adapting them appropriately. I think that this chapter is particularly interesting because you had the chance to do here what we didn't get to see in the books: Harry (and Hermione) interacting with Snape.

I think that you actually captured Snape quite well. He's not easy to write, so huge congrats on that. He didn't have the same condescending air that he usually does in the books, but we did see that spark of anger and resentment at Dumbledore, and I think that the rest of his personality change is fairly understandable considering the circumstances. This wasn't a normal day, and Snape, as an adult, was, I think, able to put his personal feelings aside when it was really important.

I did wonder at Ron's not being there, but hopefully that will be explained in one of the next chapters. I also wish that you'd included a little more internal monologue about Draco being there for the conversation with Snape - it strained my credulity to think that Harry, at least, wouldn't have objected to Draco's presence quite quickly if he thought that the Horcruxes would come up. I don't have an issue with Draco being there for part of it, but I would have liked to see a little more of an acknowledgment that it was a big deal.

Overall, though? Amazing job!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello again!

I'm absolutely ecstatic to hear that you think I wrote Snape well. He was practically impossible for me to feel comfortable writing, and I'm so happy he came across well. I didn't want him to be too slimy and horrible because I DID want him to have a certain degree of maturity about everything he and the other characters had gone through. Consequently, I wrote him somewhat mellower than he would usually come off.

I'm definitely taking your CC into account when I edit this, so I'm really glad that you've pointed things out for me to improve. Thank you so much, as always.

--Emily


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Review #29, by Beeezie The Prince's Return

10th July 2014:
I was a little worried going into this, because there's just so much potential to write at least one of the characters massively OOC, even in the context of Rule Breaker, which obviously doesn't live by the same rules as DH because the last 10 months have been radically different.

But overall? I think you managed to pull it off.

I'm not 100% sure about Harry's word choice when he first sees Hermione and Draco, but the sentiment behind it is spot on. Harry does have those moments throughout the books with both Ron and Hermione where he really, really regrets fighting with them and just wants to make it better. I think he angers more quickly than they do, but he also gets over it more quickly, too. I can definitely see this knocking some sense into him by helping to clarify what's important, and unfortunately, I can absolutely see Ron taking longer to do so, especially since he's dating Mandy.

I also liked Harry and Draco's interaction regarding Snape. They had different experiences with him, absolutely, but they definitely both have reason to have super complicated feelings about him. For Draco, Snape was sort of a savior... but he also symbolized a lot of what Draco's pulled away from and, at this point, legitimately hates. And, for Harry, Snape obviously tormented him for years and then killed Dumbledore. I almost felt like Harry's anger was overdone at first, but then I stopped to think about it and realized that no - it was actually pretty true to his reactions in the books.

I did wonder at all the Ministry officials being there for Snape's interrogation, though - obviously the Order didn't sever all ties to the Ministry until DH, but the events of OotP and HBP definitely left them fairly mistrusting of the Ministry in general. They certainly weren't including the Minister in any of their plans. Consequently, I was a bit confused about how Scrimgeour and the Aurors (and the Order members who weren't teachers, for that matter) managed to be there so quickly and why McGonagall invited the Ministry at all. In a lot of ways, I'd probably want as few people as possible near Snape, if I were her - all it takes is one double agent who casts a spell quickly to take away any chance they had of questioning him.

I also had a bit of a hard time with the students just going back to school on their own. Given what had just happened, it seems likely that at least a few would be too injured to make it, or perhaps even dead, and many of the others would have been panicked. I'd think that the teachers would want to make sure everyone was accounted for, and I'd also think that some of the responsibility for that would have fallen on Hermione. It's fine if you want to make it not fall on her - but if so, I think you need some kind of justification for that.

Oooh, I hope that wasn't too much CC. I really did enjoy the chapter, and I thought that the way you depicted the characters themselves was generally excellent! I cannot wait to read on!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello again!

I've caught up to adding your CC to my word document (there are five full pages of it so far!), so here I am to respond to these reviews and put THEIR CC with the rest of it. ;) If that even makes any sense to you.

ANYHOW. Thank you, as always, for a fantastic review. I'm really glad that this chapter had you thinking about everyone's reactions. It was complicated for me to write because Snape hasn't been around for so long, and his influence on these characters has been minimal at best for almost a year. Figuring out how they would respond to his presence was difficult.

I loved all of your CC, and it's definitely going to make its way into the final draft (which I'll be working on as soon as I finish responding to the rest of your reviews). After that, I'll post chapter 49, and then the epilogue...and then it's over! Wow.

Thank you for the advice on how to improve this. I'm definitely taking it to heart.

--Emily


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Review #30, by Beeezie Hogsmeade Again

10th July 2014:
Yeah, I'd kind of suspected that if any of Theo's friends came around, it wouldn't be Mandy - not considering that she tried to tell Hermione that she should overlook her boyfriend's considering becoming a Death Eater because hey, he's under stress.

Unlike Hermione, who's part of a group being targeted for genocide, who wiped her parents memories and sent them halfway across the world and is consequently family-less, at least for the moment, and whose best friends keep being the subject of assassination attempts.

(I'm sorry, I just can't get past how unfair that was. It's totally believable - just super, super unfair.)

I was glad to see Harry making the effort, and I think it makes sense that he would do so before Ron, for so many reasons. Ron has always disliked Draco and unlike Harry, has never really seen anything that might make him change his mind even a little.

Moreover, I'm sure that Mandy and her friends have only been adding fuel to the fire; they clearly hated Draco to begin with, and now that Hermione dumped Theo to be with him, that must be magnified even more. And I do wonder whether there's a tiny bit of jealousy at play - he doesn't want to be with her, necessarily, but he did date her, and the idea of her dating Draco might trouble him.

Harry, on the other hand, has never had any romantic interest in Hermione, and softened a little toward Draco when he heard how scared and desperate Draco was during HBP - and, most importantly, he knew Draco wouldn't have killed Dumbledore. Sure, he's told Ron that, but there's a difference between hearing something and seeing it. Ron's just heard it secondhand - Harry saw how Draco reacted, and it clearly made an impression.

I mean, he's not hugely keen on the situation, but at least he tried.

My only crit is that I do wish that there'd been a little bit of a better justification for the Hogsmeade visit. I feel like it was really naive for McGonagall to assume that because they'd captured a couple of teenaged Death Eaters, everyone else would lay low. If anything, I'd probably assume the opposite - that they'd want to get even/reassert their strength and control.

Obviously it's important to have them be in Hogsmeade - it's necessary for this chapter to properly unfold. However, I wish you'd handled it a bit differently. What if you had McGonagall acknowledge the risks but place Aurors/Order members/whatever around Hogsmeade, or use enchantments to help keep Death Eaters out? Them being able to break through regardless is plausible, especially if you had some of the store owners in Hogsmeade helping them (even if just under the Imperious Curse), but it would be nice to see a little more detail put into that aspect of the chapter, because right now, it feels a bit too convenient.

Now, I must read on to see what Snape it up to! (And what happens with the rest of the Death Eaters!)

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello again!

I'm SO happy that you like Harry's reaction to Hermione's relationship. He's so phenomenally difficult for me to write, so I'm really glad his character is coming across well. I'll add a more solid explanation for the Hogsmeade visit when I revise, and I hope that helps the chapter. Thank you so much!

--Emily


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Review #31, by Beeezie A Mixed Reaction

10th July 2014:
Yeahhh. Again, I can see where McGonagall is coming from, but I think that expecting Draco to forget about the small matter of people trying to frame him for murder, kill him, and injure his only friend/now-girlfriend is a bit much. Yeah, of course he wants to know what happens to them, and I don't think it's fair for McGonagall to refuse to give him that information.

I actually really liked Ron and Harry's reactions to the revelation that Hermione had ended things with Theo and started something with Draco. Ginny was able to shrug it off and adjust and be happy for Hermione because she had some background knowledge of the situation - she knew that Hermione was torn and that both boys had feelings for her. Harry and Ron just kind of had it dumped on them, and unfortunately, they've never been all that terrific at reading between the lines, so they probably weren't aware of the magnitude of the issues Hermione and Theo had been having.

And, of course, they still dislike Draco - and it's not totally unwarranted. I mean, he spent years torturing them and generally treating them quite poorly. Hermione's been able to move past that because they've spent a lot of time alone and he's been such a huge support for her. Harry and Ron don't see that and haven't experienced that, so of course they're a bit skeptical and concerned.

And added to all of that, Ron is involved with one of Theo's friends, which makes the entire situation even more awkward.

So yeah. I think you hit the nail on the head with that.

I wish I could say that I thought that having them avoid her for a couple weeks after that revelation was out of character... but there's precedent for it. We've seen them do it several times, often over things that were pretty minor.

And, while her losing her Slytherin friends was certainly sad, it was also, unfortunately, very predictable. It's an unfortunate thing about breakups - you generally lose friends, too, though I wish that they'd been a little more understanding about the whole thing. I hope in a coming chapter at least one of them extends the olive branch, because it is possible to try to maintain friendships with both people following a breakup.

But while Draco's right and Harry and Ron will certainly come around, I suspect that most (if not all) of the Slytherins likely won't. However, the end of the chapter makes it pretty clear that Hermione has no regrets. ;)

Great chapter!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello!

I'm glad that you liked the reactions in this chapter. There are so many factors that play into Hermione and Draco's relationship, and not many people have been privy to that information. So it's tough for Harry and Ron, but I didn't want them to go over the top RAGEFIT. I also think it's sad that the Slytherins are keeping their distance, but you're right -- that does happen after breakups. And in the end, Hermione was really only with Theo for a few months. His friends have been there for YEARS. We'll see how it goes in future chapters. :)

Thanks again!
--Emily


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Review #32, by Beeezie The Following Day

10th July 2014:
Aw. Well, I do feel a bit bad for Theo, which I'm pretty sure I'm supposed to, but at the same time... well, dude, this is what happens when you think that Becoming a Death Eater + Dating a Muggleborn = Totally Reasonable Thing That No One Will Have a Problem With.

I mean, I know it was a bit more complicated than that, and I'm sure that some of his behavior was influenced by the fact that he knew this was coming... but still.

I did like that he didn't immediately say that of course they could still be friends - it would have come off to me as really unrealistic, because I think that after breakups, you often need to have a bit of that distance, especially when they're not mutual, and especially when one person has already moved on. We'll see how that develops, but so far, I like it.

I also really liked that Draco overheard the conversation, but knew enough the know that this wasn't something he should intrude upon, either before or after Theo left. It says a lot about how he sees her and how he respects her, which is definitely a bit of a contrast to some of Theo's behavior.

And now I want to see what they've found out!

Oh, a bit of cc - I wasn't really sure about Hermione walking through the corridors in tattered clothing. I can't imagine that no one thought to get her new clothes - Theo, Harry/Ron, Ginny, someone. It just seemed a little implausible.

Overall, though, great job!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hi again!

I'm really happy that you liked Theo's reaction. I feel bad for him too, but you're right in saying that he caused a lot of their problems and that he expected this. It's still hard, and I still wish he wasn't hurt (because I actually DO like him as a person), but it was necessary, and I'm glad you bought how it turned out. I'll add that CC to my long list of improvements to make on this set of revisions. Thank you!

--Emily


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Review #33, by Beeezie From the Ashes

9th July 2014:
Hermione is getting injured a lot these days, isn't she?

I actually really liked seeing her blow McGonagall off, because while she does tend to follow what teachers tell her to do, there's a lot of precedent in canon for Hermione failing to do so when it really matters to her. She attacked Snape in POA, she criticized "Moody" in GOF for using the Unforgivable Curses, and she ignored a lot of what Umbridge said in OotP. Hermione likes rules, but she likes protecting the people she cares about more.

So here, when someone she loves is in deep, deep peril, it absolutely makes sense that she would ignore McGonagall and go off to do her own thing.

I really loved how you handled the fight with the Death Eaters and her reunited with Draco. In the fight, you don't fall into the trap of depicting Hermione as perfect. She's very good, certainly, but she's not infallible, and she does get injured, sometimes seriously so.

And, similarly, you don't make their kiss as lovely and romantic as roses and doves. They're both injured, they're dirty, there's smoke all over the place, and their lips are dry. It's not really the stuff dreams are made of, but it's real. It comes off as genuine, and I loved it.

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello again!

Yes, you've entered the part of the story where everything moves quickly, and drama is constant. I'm glad you liked the fight with the Death Eaters. We've really been working in that direction since the beginning, but I didn't want it to exceed the context of a battle between teenagers. As for the kiss...that was so important to me and what they said was planned well ahead of time. I hope I did it justice. Thank you again for all of your compliments!

--Emily


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Review #34, by Beeezie Ill at Ease

9th July 2014:
Wow.

Well, quite a lot happened in this chapter, and now I'm caught between wanting to talk about it in my review and rush on to the next chapter because omg is Draco okay? I haven't done the CIs for this! I've just scanned through them, so I don't remember them properly! I'm going in blind!

I should probably talk about it.

Okay. So, first off, I loved the interactions between Hermione, Draco, and Theo. I think one thing that you've done very well (and one thing that helps minimize the cliches that often abound in Dramiones) is that you've really encouraged readers to root for Draco and Hermione to get together by showing an alternative that clearly isn't very good.

And it's not an alternative in the way that Ron is often used - i.e., completely OOC. Theo is an alternative who isn't really a bad person, but who isn't really right for her, either. The difference between his position, which is pretty privileged overall, and hers, which is pretty frightening and tenuous, is so enormous that I think that he just doesn't understand where she's coming from, which isn't good.

But aside from that, he's become increasingly territorial in some ways that set off a lot of red flags and make me want to go back many chapters to where Hermione chose the "safe" option and ask her what on earth she's thinking. Because this? This is not a safe option.

I mean, come on, Theo. A secret Hermione and her friends are keeping =/= you keeping whether or not you've joined an organization intent on killing your girlfriend, and if you truly don't see the distinction, there is something wrong with you.

And, as a counter to that, you have Draco's behavior. He's clearly not jumping around with joy that Hermione has gotten seriously injured. In fact, he's clearly quite concerned. However, he doesn't let his feelings become more important than her agency, and that's huge.

A couple cc points:

I wasn't sure about Madam Pomfrey telling Theo off. It seemed a little out of character, though I suppose that since the books are from Harry's point of view and nothing like this ever comes up for him, it's entirely plausible that she would say that, especially considering the undertone of a boy ordering his girlfriend around - which was super sketchy. It might have been nice to see some acknowledgment from Hermione that it was unusual, though, even if it was just internal.

I also wasn't sure I loved them going to Gryffindor Tower first. If Hermione was seriously injured, and it certainly seemed like she was, I can't imagine them going anywhere but the Hospital Wing. I do understand why you did it - then Theo could be there - but I feel like it might have worked better if he and Draco had been talking outside the Common Room or if Hermione and Theo had just had the entire conversation after the Hospital Wing. I mean, I doubt that she was going to be able to get rid of the bloody clothing in a hurry, and if Madam Pomfrey had given her any potions to take, that would have made her visit to the Hospital Wing pretty clear.

Just a thought.

Overall, though, this was brilliant, and I am eagerly reading on!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello!

I'm taking forever to answer all these reviews because I just keep rereading them and smiling to myself! :) Thank you so much.

I loved what you said about the contrast between Draco and Theo, and the fact that Draco wants to respect Hermione's agency. That's so accurate! He knows she's intelligent and independent, and he doesn't feel the need to impose upon that. Theo, on the other hand, has a hard time with it, and would prefer her to be more reliant on him.

I'll take your CC into consideration, as always! I'm organizing it all in a Word document so that I can have it in one place while I revise before I post chapter 49 and the epilogue. I'm so freaked out that this is almost over!

Thanks again!
--Emily


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Review #35, by Beeezie The Heist

9th July 2014:
Huh.

There are a couple really important things that happened here.

I like how you handled the treasure. One thing that always stuck out to me in DH was that they weren't really injured by any of the treasure in the vault, even though it was apparently white-hot. I thought it worked really well this way. I mean, it sucks that Hermione was so seriously injured, but it made sense, you know?

I was also struck by Bill's reaction to the entire thing, because it was so drastically divergent from the Bill we knew in DH. And on one hand, I do think that he probably should have trusted them a bit more when they said that it was important, but on the other, I get that without the backdrop of DH - which was utterly hopeless - Bill's approach is not necessarily going to be the same.

It was interesting, and I'll have to think more about it.

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello again!

Thanks for pointing that first comment out! I wanted to have something really brutal result from this huge risk that they took. The fact of the matter is, they take a lot of risks in this story and do a lot of dangerous things. I don't feel like it would be realistic if no one ever got injured or died, etc.

I'm glad you observed Bill's reaction too. I wanted his concern for them to manifest as anger. He is really mad AT them, but he definitely isn't happy that they put themselves in danger.

Thanks for another lovely review!

--Emily


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Review #36, by Beeezie Harry, Ron, and Horcruxes

9th July 2014:
Oh dear.

Hermione, when you aren't mentioning Death Eaters too often because you don't want to give your boyfriend ideas, this is not a good situation for you to be in! At all! Especially when he tries to weasel out of helping to save people's lives because he doesn't want to deal with "more trouble."

I mean, dude, your girlfriend is dealing with a lot of trouble, lots of people want to murder her and everyone like her and also pretty much all of her friends. And Draco has Death Eaters at Hogwarts specifically because Voldemort now really wants him dead (as opposed to the only sort of in HBP to punish Lucius).

You think you have problems??

Sorry - I feel very strongly about this, apparently. I'm glad she called him out on it, too, and pointed out that it was ludicrous to think that his father wasn't already suspected. I mean, really? I can understand new recruits trying to keep a low profile, but his father was around from the First Wizarding War. Everyone knows.

Anyway.

I like the way you wound in the Horcruxes again, and I'm glad that Harry and Ron are taking center stage for a bit - I know it's harder to write them, but I've missed them and I think it's important that they remain a part of the story as well.

Great chapter. Onto the next one!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello! I see that the proper review for this chapter found its way to me. :) I waited to respond to your others so that I could answer this one.

I agree that Hermione's situation just gets worse and worse. She's trying so hard to save everyone (ironic when she once told Harry he has a "saving people thing"), but it's tough when the people you want to save constantly endanger themselves.

Thanks for all your comments and compliments! Off to answer the other reviews!

--Emily


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Review #37, by Beeezie No Turning Back

9th July 2014:
"A week from today, we'll either have succeeded, or we'll be dead."

I love that line so much.

You've continued to do a great job of balancing the storyline as we know it from DH and your AU take on their seventh year. I can understand why you didn't want to completely change where the Horcruxes were and what they are - this isn't really a seeking-Horcrux-adventure-story, it's a story about Hermione and her relationships with the people around her. More importantly, the identity of most of the Horcruxes was established in HBP - it wouldn't make sense to start changing it up now.

But you've done a great job at adapting those parts of DH that you haven't radically changed to the story that you're writing. It's a very different world with the Ministry still standing and Voldemort not all-powerful; it makes sense that the break-in would work differently, and that they'd avoid some of the pitfalls that they bumped into in DH.

I'm super psyched to see what happens next.

Also - wow, Theo. No apology? Really?

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: I love when people point out lines that they like! :D I'm really happy that you did. :) Thanks again for saying that you liked the meshing of "Deathly Hallows" and "Rule Breaker." Again, that was so important to me. And you have it exactly right -- this is about Hermione, not the Horcruxes, but they DO still exist, and I did want to have them factor in. Yes, Theo is being a snot. Again. You'll see how that works out. :)

--Emily


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Review #38, by Beeezie Plotting the Impossible

9th July 2014:
Oh, good - she did leave the grounds. But still, as I'd mentioned, should she have bumped into some security measure? And why isn't the Burrow under some kind of spell that makes it hard to find? (Or is it?)

Anyway. Minor, but given that there's a war going on, it did stick out to me as being a bit odd.

That aside: I really, really liked the way you orchestrated this break in. Since I know it happens (from the CI I made :P), I was really wondering how you'd do it without making it seem repetitive after DH - you know, something with your own spin.

But I think that you accomplished that, and more. The very different circumstances of Rule Breaker in comparison to DH - the Ministry hasn't fallen, Hogwarts hasn't been taken over - makes the story about the search for the Horcruxes very different, but I think that you did a great job of addressing that and keeping it plausible in the context of your storyline.

Great job!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello!

Yep, I'll clarify that journey to the edge of the grounds. I'm glad that you think I've deviated enough to be original. I was really worried about that. I want this to exist in its own world, not revolve completely around "Deathly Hallows," but I also want it to follow canon closely enough to be recognizable. I'm glad you liked it!

Thanks again!
--Emily


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Review #39, by Beeezie Correspondence

9th July 2014:
I love the entire conversation that Hermione and Draco have, but I particularly love the part right after Hermione goes to the owlery where he worries about her making herself a target and she points out that she's already a target. It's just such an extreme departure from her conversations (or, often, lack thereof) with Theo about the topic that it really stood out to me. Draco would love to protect her, he really would, but he understands that there are bigger things going on and that she's chosen a side.

Yeah. I really, really liked this.

Quick note - the note Hermione sends to Harry (and I think other notes that they've exchanged, though this is the first I've really processed it) is just written in plain English, not in any sort of code. I know that she didn't get all that detailed, but still, given the nature of what they're talking about, wouldn't it make more sense to write it in a code in case it's intercepted?

Just a thought.

I was also a little confused about the mention of apparation - maybe she leaves the school grounds to do it in the next chapter, but as with the night Draco came back, it stood out to me. Even if she does leave the grounds, how does she get back in? (And how did Draco?) I can't imagine that it's as simple as walking in, otherwise they'd have Death Eaters swarming the place.

Overall, though, amazing chapter!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello again!

I'm really happy that you liked the conversation between Hermione and Draco! This was an important moment for them, and it was really important for me that he lets her go. He knows that she can do this, and as much as he wants to try to protect her, he knows that that isn't necessary. He knows that she can take care of herself.

I'll definitely think about adding a code in! Good point there! And I'll clarify the apparation thing (see the beginning of the next chapter too, though!).

Thank you so much, yet again!
--Emily


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Review #40, by Beeezie Frustration and Forgiveness

9th July 2014:
I love the comparison Hermione draws between herself right now and Harry throughout their time at Hogwarts. Because, yeah - he did tend to get ignored, especially by her, and he often turned out to be right.

And I also liked how alone she was feeling, and how when her thoughts turned to Draco, it wasn't a romantic/sexual thing. I don't think it was really a platonic thing, either, because their relationship isn't really platonic, quite, but above all, it was a friendship/companionship type of thing - and that's really important, IMO, and what separates this from a lot of the more cliched fics out there.

I mean, this isn't primarily a physical thing, and it's not a sudden turnaround in how they feel about each other. This is something that's been building as circumstances helped push them toward each other and they did the rest.

I still think that Draco had the right to be angry and frustrated, but I'm also glad that he was the one to apologize first, because I do think that a fair bit of his anger was absolutely based around entitlement, and that's not good.

Eeee I can't wait to read on!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello!

I'm so happy that you pointed out Hermione's thoughts about Draco not being romantic/sexual. I really wanted to emphasize their friendship. It's not precisely platonic, but it IS founded in understanding and a personal connection. I'm glad you don't think this is cliche! I brand it as non-cliche so often and it's amazing to hear that you agree!

Thank you so much!
--Emily

--Emily


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Review #41, by Beeezie Ripples in the Pool

9th July 2014:
Yeah, well, Theo, serves you right. And no, you cannot bribe your girlfriend into forgetting that you want to join a group that exists to kill Muggleborns, blood traitors, and lots of half-bloods by taking her to France. That is literally the most obnoxious and entitled attitude in the entire story thus far. There is a war going on. Hermione's friend is being targeted for murder by the organization that you want to join.

That's not something you can just forget about because hey, Eiffel Tower!

Ugh. Also, has he not considered that she'll be targeted before long, too? It's the same logic that led to Tonks being targeted in DH, even though I know that that doesn't happen in this story - they prune the family trees and prevent "dirty" blood from polluting their families. What, exactly, does he think they'll see her as?

I'm glad that Harry, Ron, and Ginny sort of understand where she's coming from.

I keep meaning to go to sleep but I can't tear myself away!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hi there! (sorry it's taking so long for me to answer these; I promise I'll keep doing them and finish ASAP)

So, I COMPLETELY agree with you about Theo. He's trying to gloss over their fight, and that's not okay. I like that Hermione didn't let him do it. Your line about the Eiffel Tower made me laugh! I completely agree! :) Thanks for this review!

--Emily


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Review #42, by Beeezie Consideration

9th July 2014:
Oh, dear.

Hermione, sweetie, no. No.

But I think that this chapter was really important in a lot of ways.

First: yes, Theo's Slytherin friends have become Hermione's friends too... but this chapter made their loyalties crystal clear. They may like Hermione, but they're on Theo's side, and they're going to defend Theo and try to get Hermione to come around to his way of thinking, rather than the other way around.

Anyone with Hermione's best interests ay heart would never try to convince her to be okay with her boyfriend becoming a Death Eater - but they don't have Hermione's best interests at heart, and as people who are 1) Slytherin and 2) presumably not Muggleborn, they're speaking from a really privileged frame of mind. Sure, they lost Terry - but they're not being targeted for genocide.

Second: I can completely understand why Hermione is so distressed, and I'm glad that she expressed it. I've been worried about the fact that she's really been avoiding doing so and taking a stand, and I'm glad she did.

I'm less glad that she let Mandy make her feel like she was being unreasonable and the bad guy, but while it seems a little out of place for the Hermione we know, I also think that that sort of thing is unfortunately quite common for teenagers, especially teenagers navigating their first relationships. They're quite susceptible to manipulation, and that includes Hermione. I don't think it was necessarily intentional on Mandy's part, but it happened nonetheless, and it's a huge problem and a huge red flag.

I am not a fan of Theo right now. At all. I get why he's thinking this way, but he's sacrificing others for his own selfish needs. It's not like being a Death Eater involves puppies and kittens and rainbows - he will have to torture, intimidate, and murder innocent people, including the people Hermione loves - and people exactly like her.

That's not okay, and it's never going to be okay.

And, I mean - cut Theo some slack? Hermione erased her parents memories and sent them to Australia. How about you cut Hermione some slack? Ugh.

Run, Hermione. This dude is not safe.

I am curious about what Garrett thinks about what Theo is saying, though. He might have been keeping his tone nonjudgmental, but I don't see how he can avoid it in his thoughts.

Argh stuff just got real.

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello my dear!

Okay! So, I'm really glad you picked up on the sad fact that Theo's friends really are THEO's friends. Yes, they like Hermione, but their loyalties and histories lie with Theo. Sadly, they don't understand the HUGE implications of those loyalties. They don't realize they're agreeing with the terrible things the Death Eaters do by standing by Theo. Hermione is quite susceptible to manipulation because she's trying so hard to be friends with the Slytherins. But that doesn't mean she isn't headstrong as often as she can be.

It's fine that you don't like Theo right now. :) You aren't really supposed to. I'm glad you can understand that there are a lot of problematic elements in his relationship with Hermione, and your annoyance actually makes me smile. :)

Thanks for another great review!

--Emily


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Review #43, by Beeezie Quidditch Accidents

9th July 2014:
Yikes. Quidditch accidents seem to happen a lot around Hogwarts. I'm not saying that the game shouldn't be allowed, because I'm a huge football fan and I'd hate to see that outlawed, but honestly. Shouldn't someone have at least slowed Ron down before he hit the ground?

I find it a little funny that right after I left a review saying that I thought you should include more of Harry, Ron, and Ginny, you started including a lot more of Harry, Ron, and Ginny. It definitely adds to the story - though now, of course, I'm wondering where Theo is in all of this and reading into his not being there for Hermione when she clearly could use his support. I just can't be pleased! :P

Minor thing - in the first paragraph, you say that Hermione goes back to her room, and then that Theo finds her on the couch in their common room. That confused me a bit - "her room" implies her bedroom to me. Just a note - like I said, super minor.

Awesome chapter!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: I'll definitely work on balancing character appearances! And I agree that Quidditch might be unnecessarily dangerous for children to play. I would be concerned if I was a parent. Eeesh. Thanks for your comments and critique!

--Emily


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Review #44, by Beeezie Incensed

9th July 2014:
I am in love with the ending of this chapter, too!

I actually really love how angry Draco got in this. Because anger is a part of his personality, and while I think the events of HBP and this story have definitely helped put things into perspective for him so that he doesn't get angry at the same things, I'm glad to see that you still have him get angry when there's good cause.

And you know what? There is good cause. He has every right to be angry at McGonagall, even though I think there are probably issues and forces at play that she's not telling them about.

And I think he has a right to be mad at Hermione. I suspect that part of his anger is just based in his entitledness - I don't believe for a second that he's shed all of that, and I think that he's been raised to thing that he should get whatever he wants, and right now that's a relationship with Hermione. However, I do think that part of his anger is that she is taking the easy way out, and she knows it. She explicitly - albeit only in her thoughts - chose Theo because she saw him as the "safe" option.

Not the option she cared about most, or had the most chemistry with, or wanted to be with most. Just safer.

And while that's her right, I think he's allowed to be angry about it, especially since Theo's pretty tight with the Death Eaters at this point. He's clearly aware of it when he references Theo's father, and Hermione is so aware of it she won't talk to her boyfriend about the war out of fear that he'll join the Death Eaters.

That's not good. And here Draco is, choosing the harder road and in danger of being killed for it, and Hermione's... choosing the future Death Eater.

Yeah. I'd be angry, too.

Awesome, awesome chapter.

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hi again!

I'm so glad you liked this chapter! You're correct: Draco has every right to be angry and he IS. He's gone through so much and people keep blowing him off. He has every right to be sick of the way people are treating him. But you're also correct in saying he feels entitled. I think it's more that he feels entitled to having someone (especially the person he considers his best friend) be straight with him. He's sick of people lying and dodging around things, and it's very frustrating that she isn't telling him the truth and he knows it. I think if he truly believed she had no feelings for him, he wouldn't mind her choice as much. It's that he knows that she's lying. And I'm glad you liked the ending! That very scene was in my head for so long. I couldn't wait to write it. Thanks again!

--Emily


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Review #45, by Beeezie The Valentine's Day Ball

9th July 2014:
I love your characterization of Ginny here. I think she often gets painted as this very boring, flat sort of person, which never really made sense to me; sure, we don't see so so much of her in the books, but what we do see does indicate that she's a pretty tough person who isn't very prone to tears. I can easily see Ginny losing patience with the people around her being frivolous when she's stuck worrying about her family.

And I think Hermione is in sort of the same boat... except it's her responsibility to look after not only herself, but the well-being and mental health of her fellow students. And I can see how a ball could help cheer them up and take their minds off of what's happened... and while the sixth and seventh years might be more alert because they'll be heading out into the world sooner, it's a bit much to expect that kind of fortitude of pre-teens.

Hermione and Theo are still very cute together in general, but the Death Eater stuff is also still giving me serious pause. The war is happening. In six months, they won't even have the partial safety of Hogwarts, which is looking pretty bleak these days as it is. She can't keep hiding from this forever, and someone who can't support her through the war isn't someone who can support her, period.

(Sorry - I'm not sure I'm supposed to be quite this annoyed at Theo, but seriously. He's kind of reminding me of a teenaged Snape at this point, and that's not a good thing.)

Anyway. The conversation she overheard at the end - wow. (Also, who talks about something like that in a public place? They're really not very smart, are they?)

It's 3am for me and I should be going to sleep, but I just can't stop!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: I'm REALLY happy you like Ginny. It depresses me that movie-Ginny is a limp mushroom. In the books, she's much more compelling. You're right about her being impatient about other people's frivolity. And Hermione feels the same, but you hit the nail on the head: she's responsible for trying to keep everyone's spirits up. I'm ridiculously happy that you're seeing the flaws in Theo's character. You've said it before, but I'll repeat it: he's not a bad person, but he's also not good for Hermione in many aspects. And that shows when they get down to it and try to discuss the difficult things. Also, yes, talking about your super-secret mission is a crowded room--not the most intelligent. Way to go, guys. XD

Thanks for another amazing review!
--Emily


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Review #46, by Beeezie The Fire

9th July 2014:
I find Theo's absence here to be even more interesting. I mean, I get that Hermione was with Draco when it happened, but why wasn't Theo one of the first people on the sight? I can't imagine that he missed a huge part of the castle being on fire, but why didn't he seek her out to support her? Why was it Draco leading her to McGonagall and then to her friends?

So many questions!

I do know who the Death Eaters are, I think, from one of your recent requests... which has already been mentioned in the story, so it's just confirmed what's already been said about two characters I have no real attachment to. If there's a shock betrayal, I must not know about it yet - yay!

Amazing job, yet again. I can't wait to read more.

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hi again!

I've gone and accidentally let a character disappear again. I'll fix it and add an explanation. Thanks for pointing that out! You do already know the Death Eaters, but there are some really dramatic moments that I don't think you know yet that just might change a lot of the way you think about people. We'll see. :) Thanks again for reviewing! I can't wait until you get to the chapters you know nothing about! ;)

--Emily


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Review #47, by Beeezie Ravenclaw versus Slytherin

9th July 2014:
Well then. You really didn't waste any time in getting into more drama, did you? A fire? I hope everyone is okay, though I wouldn't be at all surprised if they're not.

I noticed that while Theo was there for the discussion of the Valentine's Day ball, he didn't get so much as a mention during the Quidditch game, even though he probably should have theoretically been rooting for his house. I also found Hermione's insistence on congratulating Draco and celebrating with him in the Room of Requirement to be really interesting - I mean, I know that at this point she's kind of his only friend, and that she's still getting over being happy that he's still alive and relatively okay, but... even with all of that, they are not acting particularly platonic, whatever she said about Theo and choosing him.

I am interested to see if Draco suffers any psychological consequences of his experience. I mean, he was kidnapped and tortured, and his mother might be dying/dead. I'm hoping to see some reaction to that soon.

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hi again!

This story goes through lots of dramatic moments. This one was interesting to write, so I'm glad it kept you reading. I definitely need to remember not to let characters disappear...oops. Again. And I agree that Hermione and Draco aren't the best at being platonic. That's their entire problem. Which, of course, will be dealt with later. ;) As for psychological consequences, I completely agree that that needs to be dealt with. It shall be worked in. :)

Thanks again!
--Emily


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Review #48, by Beeezie Healing and Heartbreak

9th July 2014:
Oh, dear. Poor Draco. That really, really sucks. I am glad that Hermione didn't dissemble and try to soften the blow, though - it wouldn't have done him any favors.

I love what you've done with the Malfoys here. HBP and DH definitely showed that while they're certainly prejudiced and while Lucius has almost certainly killed more than his fair share of people in his service to Voldemort, they - particularly Narcissa, but Lucius as well - put their family far, far above any ideology. I can absolutely see Lucius turning his back on Voldemort if he was worried for Narcissa's health, and I love that humanizing view of them. They're still horrible people in so many respects, but their devotion to family is definitely at least a little bit redemptive.

I am wondering how Draco got back to Hogwarts in the first place, though - isn't it impossible to apparate directly into the castle or the grounds? How could he have hauled himself up to the castle from outside the grounds in his condition? Maybe you explain this later - it just occurred to me.

Reading on now!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Thanks again for reading and reviewing! I'm really glad you accept the explanation of Lucius and Narcissa's desertion. It was really important to me that they choose to turn their backs on Voldemort. They're not great people, definitely not, but I do think they love each other, and I wanted that to be a bit of a foundation for Draco to look to in his own life. I actually never thought about how he got to the school...hmmm. I guess that does need to be dealt with. Oops! I'll take care of it. :)

Thanks again!
--Emily


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Review #49, by Beeezie Anxiety and Apprehension

9th July 2014:
Wow, even when I'm trying to write short reviews, I write long ones. I can't help it! This story is awesome, and I need to gush!

I was really happy to see Ginny make an appearance, because I think Hermione really did need a female friend to talk to just then, particularly since her boyfriend and two other best friends tolerate Draco for her sake rather than really care about him. You can always tell when that's the case, and when you're worried for someone, you certainly don't want to be around someone who's just barely resisting badmouthing them.

And she had reason to worry. What on earth happened to Draco?! Must keep reading.

A couple little thoughts on CC:

In all of Hermione's worrying about Draco, I haven't seen much (if any) mention of the kiss or her potential romantic feelings toward him. I'm not sure if that intentional or not, but I just wanted to note it, because it does seem a bit odd to me.

Also: in the conversation with Ginny, in the paragraph starting, "My whole family is fighting this war," the "she" is a little ambiguous. From the context, it's clear that it's Ginny, but I think the sentence might work better if you used Ginny's name in that dialogue tag.

Also, as I mentioned in a couple of my earlier reviews, be careful with the adverb/adjective use - but also be careful about overusing dialogue tags. I don't think you need to break the dialogue up as much as you do. For example, Ginny explained doesn't add anything to that paragraph - it just feels a bit awkward.

All minor stuff, of course. Overall, another really rewarding chapter!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Ah! Thanks again! I'm really glad you liked Ginny. She's a bit easier than Harry or Ron for me, so I'm glad she came across well. I liked writing that scene. Your critique, as always, is very valuable, and I'm glad I have it! These chapters are going to improve so much in my final revision before the epilogue! :D

--Emily


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Review #50, by Beeezie Circumstances

9th July 2014:
Oooh. This had quite a lot in it, didn't it?

Again, I liked seeing a lot of Ron and Harry. I do think that one of the areas in which you've struggled a little is including them enough - this is Hermione's story, but they're inevitably a big part of that, and at this point it seems like they're getting as much screen time as Theo's friends, who Hermione still doesn't know very well. I know it's not an easy fix, but even if you just added in mentions of her hanging out in the Gryffindor CR or studying with Harry and Ron without writing out the scene itself, I think it would lend a some authenticity to the story that I think you're missing a bit of.

Anyway. The scene in which they destroy the Horcrux is pretty eerie - if it didn't bother my boyfriend so much, I might sleep with my light on tonight! I thought you did a great job at describing it without either copying DH or deviating too significantly from it in terms of the end game - i.e., that Harry has to speak Parseltongue to get it to open before they can kill it. Using the fangs is also a great idea, since they're still at Hogwarts - I like it, because it really is the sensible solution.

I was also happy to see them showing concern about her and picking up on her not being okay. I think it's just like them to try to be reassuring - Ron might not care about Draco, but he knows that Hermione does, so he's trying. They're both falling down a bit in the execution, but that's just like them, too, isn't it?

A minor note:

In the beginning of the chapter, you say the twenty minutes earlier, Hermione had been in the Chamber of Secrets. It seemed like twenty minutes was a little bit of a stretch - that really not a lot of time to destroy the Horcrux, get out of the Chamber, get back to her room, presumably shower because I imagine that the Chamber is pretty gross, and then get in bed. It might work better just to say "earlier that evening" or something similar. I know it's minor, but it was just a thought I had.

Oof. I just reread this review and I'm a bit afraid that it comes off as hypercritical. I don't mean it to be - I really liked the chapter, and I can't wait for the next!

House Cup 2014 Review - Ravenclaw

Author's Response: Hello!

Thank you so much for this review! Your critique is so appreciated! I'm really glad you liked the Horcrux scene, and I completely agree that I suck at including Harry and Ron. They're so hard for me to write that I accidentally tend to avoid them completely. I'll work on that. :) And I'll fix the other things you've mentioned. Thank you so much for pointing them out! I really appreciate your critique.

Thanks again!
--Emily


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