Reading Reviews From Member: MargaretLane
859 Reviews Found

Review #26, by MargaretLaneThe Cat Turned Werewolf: This Can't Be Happening; It Already Happened

16th January 2015:
Major apologies for not reviewing this sooner. I DID read it shortly after you posted in the challenge thread that it was up, but I was tired and couldn't get my thoughts together to review and then because I'd already read it, I kept leaving getting back to it. Sorry.

The first thing that AMAZES me is how naturally you've made each line start with a different letter of the alphabet. There are only one or two occasions, usually when you are starting with a letter that isn't too commonly used in the English language, that I even noticed what you were doing or that the sentences sounded in any way less than natural. The story must have taken SO much crafting.

I was wondering what xenophobia had to do with anything, until somebody pointed out she was using the wrong word.

I find it interesting that Padma is hiding what she has become and I guess it makes sense, considering the prejudice against werewolves which exists in the wizarding world.

I did think she was being rather irresponsible, until I got to the point where she prepared to transfigure the chains, so as to ensure she couldn't hurt anybody.

Yikes, that part about her not having enough Wolfsbane is worrying.

I like the way Snape and Madame Pomfrey are aware of what happened - I think Madame Pomfrey would be bound to know the difference between a werewolf bite and an ordinary wolf bite - but didn't push the issue as she was so unwilling to talk about it. I do think they should have brought it up sooner, but I guess with everything going on at Hogwarts, it's hardly surprising the date of the full moon passed them by. Stopping the Carrows from torturing students and worrying about the number of people being abducted or killed probably occupied their minds a bit. And of course, Snape had the mission from Dumbledore and the need to keep up his act in front of his fellow members of staff to contend with as well.

I love the line about how the pain never seemed to end, until it did.

I also like the way she feels powerful, but does not like that feeling. It gives us an insight into the type of person she is, which is good, as we don't know that much about her from the books.

VERY nit-picky, but I'd be inclined to write, "it wasn't a change she liked," rather than "it wasn't a change Padma liked." Using her name twice in such quick succession seems a bit awkward and since she's the only person there, it isn't necessary.

And I like the way an uncommon word is used in the Ravenclaw common room to describe the political situation.

Poor Padma. I'm now intrigued as to how this affected her life afterwards and how she came to terms with it, or didn't.

Author's Response: Wow, one of your beautifully long reviews again! Normally we'd respond to each aspect, but seeing as I (Georgina) am half-conscious, we will touch on only a few things.

We'll fix that mistake, thanks for pointing it out. I like to hear that you (a Ravenclaw) were not offended by our use of a stereotypical big word to be used in the 'smart people' common room. And thank you for your compliments on the alphabetized part of the challenge, it was something we had trouble perfecting. To be honest, we're curious how the others used the letter X.

We may write some more on Padma in the future, we'll see.

Thank you for the review! It was lovely!

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Review #27, by MargaretLaneActions Speak Louder than Words: Bound by Honor: Rose and Scorpius POV

15th January 2015:
Hmm, I'm wondering about this part about Rose fainting. I assumed it was just the shock of the whole thing, combined with the not eating properly, but perhaps there's more to it.

And it really makes sense that Scorpius would react with nothing but happiness, despite the unexpectedness and the possible difficulties of raising a child while you're still studying (although I've no doubt the Weasleys would all pitch in and babysit or help pay for a childminder or whatever), as he's lacked a family for so long.

Yeah, between his parents' gold and the huge family she has, there shouldn't be too much problem either with one of them putting off their study for a year or two or getting somebody to care for the child while they studied. It's not like they'll lack for support.

Aw, I guess it makes sense, growing up in a family of war heroes, that she would see not being a fighter as a bad thing. The wizarding world seems to place a lot of value on fighting and physical courage anyway, or maybe that's just because we see the books from a Gryffindor point of view.

It's bound to be tough for Scorpius not having his family there at his wedding or the birth of his baby.

And hey, you know, by the next gen, the family isn't all THAT big. On her dad's side, there are 12 cousins and on her Mum's, only her and Hugo. So 12 in all. There are eight of us on my mum's side and I've eight more cousins on my dad's, so 16 in all, and both of my parents are from average sized families. One brother and ten cousins is pretty average, I'd think. Draco's comment about all the Weasleys having big families is kind of odd, actually, as Molly and Arthur are the only couple who seem to do so.

Rose does seem more involved with her cousins than a lot of people would be, though, probably because a lot of them are close in age and they all went to the same school.

I've a feeling there's more to come with Stannous, but exactly where you are going, I'm not sure.

One of the things I'm wondering about is if he'll be defeated (and presumably jailed or killed) before the child is born or if they might have to deal with him doing something like attempting to abduct the child. And I'm also wondering about how this child is going to grow up and what his or her destiny is. Or if they are just going to have powerful magic. Even that'd be a big deal though, as it's something they'll need to learn to control.

Author's Response: Hi there!

Oof - this response is so long overdue and I'm so sorry because the review was really spectacular :)

I feel like you know my characters so well, and that always makes me smile when I read your comments.

You're completely spot-on about Rose and Scorpius - she thinks she's weak because she doesn't have her wits about her in a fighting situation - hopefully her family and Scorpius can make her see that she's got a lot to offer in other ways - that are just as important.

And yup - Scorpius is going to be so completely thrilled at the idea of new Malfoys running around. I think Rose gets an inkling of the loneliness that he feels, but even to her, it's difficult to comprehend. I liken him to Harry in a lot of ways - family is everything, especially when you have to earn it.

I'm sure those two will work out a way to care for their little one. You're right - the Weasleys will all pitch in. I just wanted to portray the weight of such a life changing event as it unfolded before Rose's eyes.

I guess it really isn't that big of a family, but I'd always seen the Weasleys as an abnormally large family in terms of the Wizarding world. Most of the other characters in the books only had one (or none) siblings mentioned.

Definitely more to come with Stannous - and I like that you aren't sure where it's going... haha

Ooo - well now THAT'S an idea... :D

Thanks again!

♥ Beth

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Review #28, by MargaretLaneRabbit Heart: Beating Hearts

15th January 2015:
Apologies for the delay in getting around to reading this.

I had to laugh at his reference to his title. He appears to have a sense of humour about it.

OK, I'm now getting a bit creeped out by Nate. I assumed it was just a coincidence his uncle was a vampire too, but like Wren says, it IS rather a coincidence and Nate comment about her "not being ready yet" and seeing things as they do sounds like he might be hinting at something more than just "I didn't think she'd be prejudiced against him.

You've no paragraph break after her comment about another vampire trying to take over the school.

I don't think he necessarily IS trying to take over the school actually. Whether he's a good guy or a villain has yet to be determined, but either way, I suspect it's a little more complicated than his just trying to take over the school. Maybe he's the other guy helping Smeed solve it. That seems probable actually.

Hmm, I wonder why Nate's mother didn't want him at Hogwarts and what that part about the flu refers to. There seems to be more going on here than we know of.

I can't help feeling sorry for Dillon. I get the impression he is likely to be killed or something like that and he is just a kid.

It would probably be better to put Nate grabbing Wren's arm on the same line as his previous dialogue. I got a little confused and had to reread because I was beginning to wonder which of them had said the previous line.

Oh gosh, what are they planning to do to Rose? Turn her into a vampire maybe? I hope Albus and Scorpius are able to stop them.

Oh gosh, is it McGonagall he's hoping to entrall at the end? He'll have quite a job doing that.

I sort of thought things were improving and coming to a point where things were going to be solved, but the ending sounds kind of ominous and as if it's not over yet.

This story is always intriguing. It never gets obvious where it's going.

Author's Response: Hi! You're back!

Nate's uncle has a bit of a sense of humor about his situation, that's true. I think it gets him through the long nights.

I generally wanted to give Nate a little more life, but I think I might have gone overboard with it a bit. It's hard to drop hints if you're not going to go back and fill in the gaps later. Anyway, the bit with his mother was supposed to give him more color. It shows that she's overprotective and that she trusts a vampire to take care of him.

The story isn't quite over yet. After this, I have five more chapters. Then I'm going out for ice cream. Maybe pie.

Hey, I'm glad the story keeps you guessing, but I hope that's in a good way, and not in a wow-I'm-really-confused-what-is-this-author-doing way. :)

Thanks for another lovely review, and as always, thanks for continuing on with my story!

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Review #29, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Pureblood's Secret: The Cave

13th January 2015:
Hmm, the title of this chapter is a little unexpected. It's a bit of a change from the previous ones, but I guess now that the trial is over, we are going to move on to something slightly different. I expect it'll all turn out to be connected, but the focus can't really be on Boone so much any more. It'll probably move to getting some information about the real killer.

Rose has said "they'll drag Hugo and I along" and "you can keep Matt and I company." Somehow Rose doesn't seem the kind of person to make a mistake like saying "drag I" instead of "drag me" or "keep I company" rather than "keep me company."

Ugh, Vernon AND Aunt Marge. That sounds like a nightmare of a Christmas. Poor Kaden and Bethany.

Yeah, I can only imagine Molly's reaction if any of her grandkids missed Christmas at the Burrow to remain at school.

Hmm, I'm not at all sure Matt's doing too well. Obviously, he's not going to recover immediately, but the fact he's not telling anybody about why he's leaving class and stuff makes me think he's struggling more than he's letting on. Poor boy.

I've no doubt Elsie's non-appearance has something to do with whatever she was lying about at the trial, but that doesn't really help me. It could go either way. If she's being forced into lying against her will, then she might feel guilty about her part in getting an innocent man sent down and be unable to face Albus, possibly guessing what he would think about her doing that. On the other hand, if her whole personality IS a fake and she is lying for reasons of her own, then she may have been watching Albus for some reason in the lead-up to the trial and now that it's over, she may have no reason to continue doing so. And either way, she may be afraid he'll try and force something out of her. This is more likely if she really is as nervous and shy as she appears, but even if she is a willing participant, she may still feel it best to avoid being around somebody who may ask difficult questions. So it doesn't get me very far.

The way Felix constantly watches over her grants credence to her being forced into doing something, but her behaviour when she didn't realise she was being overheard WAS weird. In real life, I would assume it was just a stress reaction or that she was getting fed up with being forced into doing something she didn't want to. But in fiction, I tend to feel it's got to mean something more. Although the latter option IS a possibility, as it could be a hint that she is about to change allegiances. I doubt it's just being in a bad mood, because I doubt you'd bother showing us the scene unless it meant something more than that.

And now Albus has suggested some of the options. If she IS being forced into it, Felix DEFINITELY wouldn't want her talking to anybody, particularly somebody like Albus and if she's not, she may be being careful about who she speaks to.

I've a feeling Elsie is the pureblood the title refers to.

Yeah, I suspect John and Kaden would be easier to lose than Rose, Amanda or Matt, because they wouldn't particularly care. Matt would want somebody with him because of his anxiety and Rose and Amanda would get suspicious, whereas John and Kaden don't take things so seriously and would probably just think the idea of following people amusing even if they did know he planned to do it.

Hmm, I'm now beginning to suspect Elsie isn't quite as quiet and shy as she makes out. One time getting irritated could be pressure or beginning to realise what she was being made do, but twice when she thinks she's not being watched makes it seem like she's different whenever she and Felix are alone. And the way he is saying he doesn't see the point in it makes it seem her decision.

But this doesn't entirely fit with him collecting her from her classes. I mean, I'm sure it does when you know the truth, but I can't see a connection. That REALLY made it seem like he didn't trust her, whereas here he seems to be doing as she says unquestioningly, indicating he does. There's clearly a LOT that I'm missing.

Ah! This is beginning to fit together. It seems like somebody related to Felix and Elsie is involved in the murder and both want to help him, but have different ideas about how to do so.

And Albus knows where the murderer might hide, but of course, telling people is of limited advantage, since hiding in a cave isn't a crime.

Actually, THAT begs the question of why this person has fled abroad and why they need to hide. They're not being suspected, by the looks of things, so what danger are they in? There's obviously more going on than just the murders.

And I wonder why they want to come back so badly they're willing to live in a CAVE.

I wouldn't go to Dawlish. I still don't 100% trust him, although this makes it seem more likely he's innocent. I think Albus should tell Harry when he goes home for Christmas. If Harry and Dawlish ARE working together, Harry can pass it on to him and if they're not, better Harry has the information. Plus, it would just be safer and easier to give the information to somebody he lives with, as Johnston would be less likely to overhear.

Ah, and he comes to that conclusion himself.

And even once he returns, there is no evidence that we can see of to link him with the murders and the Ministry aren't going to want to investigate as proving their own theory wrong would make them look bad.

The only advantage Albus, Boone and the others have is if this guy is hiding, there must be some REASON for that. It indicates he was suspected of SOMETHING or why run and if he is arrested for whatever he's suspected of, then more might come out.

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Review #30, by MargaretLaneRainbow: A Raging Storm

12th January 2015:
Yeah, I think it could be kind of scary, or at least confusing, for Rose to be out in the cold and the wet in crowds of people and cheering.

I'd like to see more of Molly and Lucy. I bet you could find all kinds of issues to give them, with Percy's guilt from betraying his family and everything.

Twice in two hours?! Yikes, that's a low level of scoring. Especially considering the Keepers each have to guard three hoops, but I guess it's an indication of how good the Keepers are that not much gets past on either side.

*laughs at the transfiguring a Chaser into a polecat* I agree with Hugo; that's kinda ridiculous. I guess the real world equivalent would be having a player abducted in the middle of a match or something.

You've written that the Irish avenge every foul by "fouling them New Zealand back." I'm guessing it should be "them fouling New Zealand back."

*laughs at Hugo falling asleep* I don't blame him, though how he can sleep through a match, with all the noise and artificial lighting and rain, I have no idea.

It's hard to imagine how Rose COULD keep up at Hogwarts, if she's struggling to remember even basic stuff, not to mind trying to study for the end of year exams.

If she DOES recover enough to return, I wonder what'll happen. She'll probably miss at least a year in total, more like a year and a half, considering how much of first year she missed. I guess maybe she'll start second year when Hugo starts first. Isn't she only turning 12 now? So she'd be just thirteen starting second year, if she went back the following year. That wouldn't make her much older than her classmates. Only a week older than the oldest she should be for that year. That'd be OK.

If Ireland has any tourist attractions left? *laughs* We've an unlimited amount.

Now I get to get my own back! You have the Irish Minister saying her family "were sat." That's a really English construction. We'd say "were sitting" or just "my family sat". Also, not sure if this is an Irish thing or not, but "one's the manager" would sound better than "one's manager."

I had to laugh at Hugo's comment about the spirit of the game involving trying to knock people off their brooms.

And the part about whether the New Zealanders have to watch reminds me of the two Presidential candidates who didn't turn up for the winner's victory speech and stuff. I guessed one of the two immediately once I heard of it.

Author's Response: Told you I couldn't be bothered to edit! Thanks for doing it for me. ;) And yep, you got your own back there. Fair's fair. *hugs*

Yeah, it's a low level of scoring. Not so much an indication of the Keepers' skill as the foul weather conditions and the vicious play! Neither team can remain in possession long enough to get near the hoops, and even when they do the wind tends to catch the Quaffle and make it miss the hoops. And fighting against the elements, Chasers can't help but give away which hoop they're aiming for because they've got enough on their hands without trying to bluff.

Yeah, who on Earth would decide to transfigure a Chaser into a POLECAT? If they're going to commit fouls, why not just reverse the charms on their broom or confund them? Wizards, eh...

Artificial lighting makes SO much difference to Hugo... ;) Yeah, it's impressive that he can fall asleep with the noise and rain but he's a bored and sleepy 10-year-old and manages it somehow!

Yeah, there's no way Rose could manage at Hogwarts. Well, I know what'll happen in terms of her going back. *smiles innocently*

Yeah, I love it when Hugo comes out with stuff like that!

OK, I've satisfied my need to write Quidditch commentary so it's back to torturing characters for the rest of the story! *cackles*

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Review #31, by MargaretLaneAll or Nothing: there is a light that never goes out

10th January 2015:
Wow, LOVE your imagery in the first paragraph. I am HOPELESS at imagery, so I always admire it when people can do it well.

And you characterise the various characters in such little ways, like their referring to their parents as "Mother" and "Father" rather than "Mum" and "Dad" and their various reactions to the beetle.

I think it is totally in character for Bellatrix to see her sisters as weak, particularly Narcissa. Narcissa's main concerns appear to be her husband and son, which aren't priorities I can imagine Bellatrix thinking too highly of.

And I'm now wondering who the "you" is.

I like the way Bellatrix includes the other character's pureblood ancestry as one of the reasons she is attracted. That sounds like her.

And the blood red shoes interest me. They show something of an eccentric side to this character, possibly a rebellious one. I wonder how Hogwarts would feel about red shoes. It doesn't seem to have any rules about shoe colour, but I think a lot of schools might frown upon red. I know some schools have rules like black or brown shoes only. They also link her a little with the witches from the Wizard of Oz. Did you intend that?

I like the mention of the Knights of Walpurgis.

I also like the way Bellatrix says she wants to be a Dark LORD. Somehow "lady" has connotations of delicacy that I don't think she'd be too impressed by.

I am a little surprised by some of the pureblood conventions mentioned here. I can see that she would be expected to marry and have children, as the purebloods would surely want their name to live on, which makes it odd that a lot of the pureblood families seem to have only one or two children and that Draco sneers at the Weasleys for having a large family actually. But I wouldn't have expected them to have such a convention of the woman being the one to stay home and raise the children, when women have been educated alongside men for 1,000 years and have been in important positions back to at least the 18th century, longer when you think of people like the founders.

I like her dismissal of her husband and the way she basically just uses him to ensure her position in society. While she is rebellious, she is also the sort of person who would want to bolster her position in society and if marrying would do that, well, I can definitely see her marrying somebody she can dominate.

Oooh, that part about her getting a thrill from casting Unforgiveables sent a shiver down my spine. But it doesn't surprise me. I'd be surprised if she DIDN'T enjoy it.

And OH, I didn't expect it to end like that, but it makes perfect sense that Bellatrix would be disgusted if somebody she loved tried to escape Azkaban by lying about having been forced into obeying Voldemort.

Her craziness in Azkaban is CREEPY, in a good way. It seems totally like her.

And the last paragraph has me wondering. Have you written about this other character. If not, I would like to read a story from her point of view, about what she actually WAS doing and how she reacts when Voldemort returns. Does she return to him? I guess so or he would have commented on her absence.

Really good story. And very original.

Author's Response: gah, thank you so much about the first paragraph imagery!

I'm glad you thought their reactions to the beetle and their names for their parents contributed to the characterisation. Exactly right about Narcissa - they have such different aims in life and I imagined that Bellatrix would just look on that as weakness.

It seemed unrealistic for Bellatrix to be interested in anyone of 'lesser' blood status. And yeah, the red shoes were definitely meant to show her rebellious nature - I'm sure they'd be frowned upon. Ahaha, totally wasn't thinking of the Wizard of Oz when I wrote about red shoes, but that's an interesting connection!

I like what you pointed out about why Bellatrix insists on being a Dark Lord - you're right, she would definitely have seen "lady" as being a weaker title.

Valid point about the expectations for pureblood women as well. I think the conventions aren't quite as stringent as she makes them out to be, as her perspective provides kind of a warped view. Given the wizarding world's history and Founders and such, I'd imagine there is some extra pressure for women in raising children, but it's more equal than Bellatrix implies - but as she doesn't want children and sees them as weak and whiny, she would see it this way. (if that makes sense, haha. maybe I'll have a look at that again and try to make it clearer)

Exactly, I think her marriage was more of a step up in society than anything else. In the books there was never any indication that they liked each other that well.

ooh, I'm glad you appreciated that creepy bit about the Unforgivable curses. As for the end, yeah Bellatrix never had much appreciation for Lucius Malfoy escaping Azkaban, so I felt like that resentment would be tenfold if it was someone she loved who tried the same tricks to avoid going to Azkaban.

Thank you, I'm so glad the creepy, insane Azkaban vibe came off well :D

I haven't written about this other character before, but that is such a great idea for a story! I did like ending this on a mysterious note but I'm kind of tempted to write about her now hahah.

So glad to hear you liked the story! Thank you for this thoughtful review, I appreciated it SO much! ♥

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Review #32, by MargaretLaneInvisible in Death: Ghostly Day

9th January 2015:
Ugh, I don't like the sound of Myrtle's mother. No matter how she feels about magic, her love for her daughter should transcend that.

I like the hint that she was intelligent. I never really thought of her that way, but after all, she was a Ravenclaw. You're making me see her in a whole new way, as something more than a whiny teenager.

Poor, poor Myrtle. That'd be embarrassing enough for an adult woman, let alone a young teenager.

And Olive was SO mean, just to make it worse.

Aw, she's so busy worrying about it being somebody trying to make fun of her that she doesn't really take the danger of it being somebody trying to kill her seriously.

And OH, this WAS just Olive playing a joke on her. I assumed it was Riddle, luring her out so he could kill her. You surprised me.

And I can well imagine the Hogwarts bullies picking on Hagrid too, between his large size, his lack of proficiency at magic and his rural accent, I can easily see him being a target for kids like Olive. Poor Hagrid and Myrtle.

I wonder if Tom Riddle is the prefect.

Hmm, you've managed to give an insight into Professor Merrythought's character even though Merrythought barely appears in the story.

Poor Myrtle. The way she feels people hate everything about her is so sad.

And then the attack came so unexpectedly. I really didn't expect it at that moment.

And it makes sense that she'd suspect Olive Hornby as so much of the other horrible things that happen to her were arranged by Olive.

You've written that Hagrid might have helped Olive "pull of" the murder. I presume you mean "pull off."

And she still sees Hagrid as being involved rather than a fellow victim. It shows how badly the whole thing upset her that she's unable to even think about it clearly.

*laughs at Hagrid wanting to go out on a full moon because of werewolves* That is SO like him.

Yeah, I can definitely imagine she'd become a figure of interest once she died and once they see her, they'll probably want to talk to her, but only for a short time, probably. Once they realise she can't tell them anything about her murder and stuff, they'll probably lose interest in her again.

Actually, it's no surprise she's as depressed as she is in the books considering all that.

I wonder who Helena appeared to. Rowena maybe.

Yikes, it's actually kind of sad that hatred is the closest emotional connection she has to anybody.

And the part about the afterlife giving her her revenge is kinda creepy.

Author's Response: I first wanted to apologize for taking a while getting ack to you after you replied so fast to my review. I had a huge backlog and then needed to be at my computer to reply to your wonderful review.

When I decomposed Myrtle and tried to understand how she became such an annoying, constantly negative figure, I realized she didn't have any support system. I was torn between having her parents be dead or just not loving and I went with not loving.

Myrtle was in Ravenclaw so I like to think she was at least bright. Perhaps not a genius but I'm glad she seemed intilligent.

I was kind of hating on my period when I wrote this so it felt appropriate for Myrtle to also have a miserable period. Olive is the worst when it comes to pointing that out. I would think that any decent person would try to be compassionate.

I'm glad that the fake date seemed like a trap to kill her. I think of most teenagers as a bit oblivious to the fact that something dangerous could happen to them. She knows there's been attacks but really, it couldn't happen to *her*. Hagrid seemed like a huge target (haha) for bullying as he's so different from his peers.

Tom was the prefect! I didn't want to make a huge deal about it because that would be too heavy-handed but I wanted him to make a cameo.

It's really exciting that her attack wasn't expected there. I wanted it to be somewhat of a surprise (apart from everyone reading this knows it'll happen).

The way Myrtle fixated on Olive was a thing I wanted to make seem justified in this story. I mean, she haunted her for quite a few years without relenting. It did bother me while i was writing this that Hagrid was so easily blamed. I have to think they asked Myrtle about him and she wouldn't have anything nice to say about him with her suspicions.

I was very annoyed at the idea that they probably didn't question her much as her death doesn't lead to Hagrid being guilty (there are so many points in her story about seeing Riddle and the Basilisk that would have exhonorated Hagrid that I was sure she wasn't asked about it for some time, if at all).

I have a whole story I'm planning about helena appearing as a ghost (it lines up wtih a Helena story I wrote last year).

Her attachment to Olive made me sad as well. I was going for scary (and started to sympathize wtih Olive a bit at the end) so I made her haunting as creepy as I could

thank you so much for a fantastic review!!


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Review #33, by MargaretLaneDull Ache: Oblivion

9th January 2015:
I saw this in the "recently added" section lately and was going to read it, but didn't get around to it, so I'm glad you offered this swap, because otherwise I'd have completely forgotten about it.

I really like the opening. It leaves me wondering if Andromeda is ill or if she's been drinking or if she's stressed. I DEFINITELY want to read on, having read the first line.

Hmm, the implication they've no guests is interesting. Maybe because her family and their fellow pureblood supremacists have basically disowned her, but maybe other people are wary of the Black's reputation for Dark Magic.

You've written "the baron room." I assume you mean "the barren room."

Hmm, I wonder what is happening to her. She seems sort of depressed or something.

Uh oh, I'm getting concerned something bad is going to happen with Andromeda's baby, that she's going to lose it.

Oh, that is so sad about their little boy. They must be heartbroken.

Really sorry about the loss of your baby.

Honestly, I didn't see many typos in this. The one I mentioned above is the only one I noticed.

Really good and emotive story. Poor, poor Andromenda and Ted. This must have been so hard for them.

Author's Response: Thank you so much for the lovely review. It's nice to have feedback on this from someone as astute a reader as you. I'm glad the beginning seems like she could be drunk or ill. I wasn't sure if her general attitude of something not being right would stand out. Thank you so much for reading this and for your kind words.

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Review #34, by MargaretLaneBroken: i. a broken lavender

6th January 2015:
Yikes, that's a pretty powerful opening. Poor Lavender.

Yeah, I can easily imagine that Lavender might not appear a "typical" Gryffindor. But bravery comes in many forms and doesn't have to mean Harry-typed bravery. I can see how she'd feel out of place in a house where tomboys are probably more common than girly-girls though.

I never thought of Lavender having pureblood prejudices, but I guess it's not surprising, particularly when Muggleborns would be ignorant of so many things that seem obvious to purebloods and 11 and 12 year olds aren't known for having the discernment to realise that THEIR norms are not everybody's.

Yikes, her mother seems a bit obsessive.

And ooh, poor Lavender. It seems like even at 11, she had some issues.

I'm glad she didn't become a werewolf. She has enough problems, between the pressure she seemed to have been under already, the trauma of attending school under the Carrows, the trauma of the attack and the scarring, which would probably be worse for her than for other people, as her mother seems to have raised her with the belief that her value is tied to her looks.

And wow, how insensitive was her mother's first response to seeing her in hospital. I can see that she was shocked, but still.

Yeah, hardly surprising she'd suffer PTSD after attending a school where students were punished by torture her 7th year, taking part in a war, seeing friends disappear from school, being attacked by a werewolf and not knowing how many of her friends are dead.

Yikes, the last time she sees Parvati alive.

This has some similarities with my "Guilt" story, just in that Demelza questions whether she deserves to be in Gryffindor in that.

And honestly, anybody who CHOOSES to take part in a battle is definitely a typical Gryffindor. Especially if they're not even a trained soldier/Auror/whatever. Not many people would voluntarily stand up to Voldemort.

Oh, gosh, what kind of mother implies that nobody will love their daughter if she isn't good-looking enough? Of course, she may not have meant it quite as Lavender took it up, but still. Poor, poor Lavender.

I thought Seamus said "mam" and not "mum" in he books.

"Craic" seems sort of out of place in Seamus's comment there. It sounds more like it means "gossip" rather than "fun" or "a laugh".

Her "silly little friends"? Gosh Lavender's mother is unsympathetic. I can see why she'd be concerned with her daughter's recovery, but expecting her daughter not to care whether her friends are living or dead is a bit much.

The bold on your "12 May 1998" heading hasn't worked.

And there are no breaks between a couple of paragraphs when Lavender realises Parvati is blind.

I'm glad she turned out to be alive though.

And I LOVE her comment at the end that Lavender should get better for herself.

Really good and really original story. Glad you posted the review swap, because it's probably not a story I'd be likely to just stumble upon.

Author's Response: Hello!

Thank you so so much for such a nice review. I'm glad you enjoyed it :)

I figured the likelihood of Pureblood prejudices was quite probably very likely simply because she was never outlined as a 'blood traitor' explicitly in the books, which suggested to me that she was more likely to sway towards the prejudiced side than not. That being said, she's not on a Draco Malfoy level of prejudice - and certainly doesn't hate Muggleborns. She just, at first, considered them to be less adequate. Of course with Hermione around that didn't last long did it :P

Oh my god you are so right I thought I'd put Seamus saying "mam" but it says "mum" instead dear me that's just a default setting I have and something I completely completely overlooked. Oops, I'll go back and edit that! And probably look more into rephrasing the "craic" part too by the sounds of it, thank you!

(Also thank you on the formatting points! I picked up on them during a readthrough last night and plan to edit them asap)

(Also also I'll be checking out the Demelza fic it sounds interesting!!)

Thanks again for reading and reviewing!


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Review #35, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Pureblood's Secret: The Verdict

6th January 2015:
Oooh, the verdict. I am really looking forward to seeing what it is. He SHOULD be found not guilty. The medical evidence was overwhelming. But I'm still not 100% certain he will be.

I don't believe they are finding it hard to study. Matt ALONE would be enough to distract them, I'd think.

Yeah, Lily REALLY doesn't seem the type to gossip about somebody's mental health. I wonder if there is anything significant to her being around so early. I'm assuming it's just a boyfriend, but it could be something more involved.

*cheers for Hagrid intervening*

Scorpius is nasty.

Yikes, Boone's been found guilty. That is utterly ridiculous.

Oh gosh, this is horrific. Not only is Boone being arrested for a crime he didn't commit, but the media are implying it's Matt's fault. I think this is going to affect Matt pretty badly - the combined effect of knowing a werewolf could be arrested for a crime it was physically impossible for him to commit and the lingering doubt he may have contributed to his being found guilty. Of course, his testimony wouldn't have helped. If "he couldn't physically have committed the crime" wasn't enough to have them find him not guilty, then the testimony of a 16 year old boy would hardly help, but still, Matt is bound to wonder "what if?"

This is beginning to sound like Ireland in late 2010. Of course, our Ministers didn't resign due to a disagreement with the Government then; they did so in order to give Ministry experience to more members of the party in order to try and get them a higher profile and lose a few less seats, but then their coalition partner (who hadn't been consulted) refused to accept new Ministers in the place of those who'd resigned. And this was only one of a number of crises.

Yeah, I can DEFINITELY imagine Draco having PTSD. What he went through was horrific - feeling he had to decide whether to commit murder or be killed and have his family killed and then seeing people murdered and tortured in his own home.

Sorry this review is pretty short.

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Review #36, by MargaretLaneAnd if they fall (as Lucifer fell): A Murder

4th January 2015:
I just LOVE the mention of the Celtic Church. And I'm now wondering if the Celtic church has banned clerical marriage at this point. I know they didn't do so until a good while after Rome, but this is late in the period.

Oooh, that part about nothing being able to hold back the death of Slytherin's wife much longer is ominous.

Aw, poor Helena. Rowena seems to genuinely care about her, but she also seems a little dismissive of her daughter's concerns - like she thinks she just been a silly teenager, although I doubt it'd be termed that way in this era, but I bet they would have had the same concept. After all Shakespeare had a character say they wished there was no age between, I think 10 and 22 or maybe it was a little older than 22 and while he lived a lot later than this, it still shows the idea of teenagers being thoughtless goes back a LONG way.

I was right about it being Helga who teases Rowena about being a genius, but wrong about her being the narrator.

And I love the way Rowena seems to take a lot of the religious rules less seriously than people like Helga. Somehow I can more imagine Helga being religious or at least, I can more imagine Helga being the sort of person to follow the rules without too much question. I see Rowena as more the type who would follow her own beliefs rather than just accepting there's a rule.

"Mac Beatha" - the son of life. I wonder if that's in some way relevant. *watches you suspiciously*

Wyot sounds like the kind of student that drives me crazy - the one you KNOW is up to something, but usually manages to explain himself so plausibly that you begin to doubt yourself and think, "well, maybe he IS telling the truth and anyway, it's going to be pretty hard to PROVE he isn't." And worse, the type that lets others take the blame for him.

Aw, I'm feeling more and more sorry for Helena and I'm not sure why. She just seems kind of lost.

And I wonder what Father Wilkin has against her. I'm already getting fond of Helena. There's something about her that reminds me of Lydia's unhappiness. *protects her*

And I love the way Killian threatens a feud.

Fair play to Helga. If Helena told him whatever it is he knows in confession, he has no right even to say that much. Did you ever hear the hypothetical dilemma about poisoning the Communion wine? I really like Helga. She is now my second favourite after Helena. Yeah, I know I've read less than a chapter, but *huggles them both* anyway. Something makes me think Helena could do with a hug.

Based on nothing but the knowledge of what you wrote elsewhere about Helena, I'm wondering if she's gay.

Like the indication of Slytherin's prejudice. It's subtle, in that if I didn't know what was going to happen later, I would assume he meant the priest was stupid AND a Muggle, whereas given what we know, it's clear he means he's stupid BECAUSE he's a Muggle. That kind of subtlety makes sense, because if he were too openly prejudiced I doubt the others would have been such good friends with him. They clearly know he has a preference for pureblooded students, as he chose them for his house, but they probably don't know how deep it is.

Yeah, leaving 7th years alone would definitely have been acceptable in those days.

Hmmm, it doesn't exactly seem like a magical crime. I mean it COULD have been done with magic, but it could also have been done without it. I think THAT is interesting.

In a way, it strikes me as a MAN'S crime, though of course, one wouldn't want to give TOO much credence to that, both because people don't always behave stereotypically and also because magic is a game changer and could reduce the need for brute strength. Killian is the obvious suspect, but way TOO obvious. We know he's capable of murder, he appeared at the castle unexpectedly, he all but threatened the priest...I really don't think it's him.

To be honest, I don't have any suspects. I doubt it's any of the people we've seen much of yet. The founders, Helena and Killian all seem unlikely. The only one I'd consider really is Slytherin.

Really excellent opening.

Author's Response: Thank you very much! I love all your deductions, but I'm not going to comment on them because it'd be impossible to do so without giving things away!

Oh, I'm not sure whether the Celtic Church has banned clerical marriage or not at this point. It's not relevant to the story, so I had no reason to find out.

Yeah, poor Helena. For whatever reason, she's definitely not happy. And Rowena cares but doesn't understand her at all, and also is kind of reassuring herself that it's nothing serious because the alternative is having to figure out how to handle the situation and - while she won't admit it - she's clearly kind of out of depth where her daughter's concerned.

Yup, I grinned when you guessed it was Helga teasing Rowena, and even more when you guessed the narrator wrong!

Yeah, Rowena's certainly more the sort to question religion and rules of society than Helga.

Yeah, Wyot's not a nice kid. He comes across as the kind of school bully who's an absolute pain and never gets caught.

Yeah, Helena seems kind of helpless, like Lydia. And oh, you're trying to protect my characters again...

No I never heard any hypothetical dilemma involving Communion wine. *looks at you questioningly* And you're allowed to pick favourites in half a chapter. (You know I would!)

Yeah, I don't think the other founders would be too impressed if Salazar went around going on about how muggles are stupid and inferior! He may be many things, but he isn't a complete idiot.

Leaving second years at college (like Hogwarts 7th years) alone happens in colleges here NOW, let alone 1000 years ago, so yeah, definitely acceptable then!

I enjoy reading your deductions. And I'll see if I can line you up a few more suspects to puzzle over next chapter!

Wow, I actually managed to find a good amount of stuff I could comment on!

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Review #37, by MargaretLaneActions Speak Louder than Words: Bound by Blood: Rose and Scorpius POV

3rd January 2015:
Poor, poor Rose. While I suspect this will end up being a good thing, it's still one more stress on top of everything else. Even a planned pregnancy is bound to create some worries - a new person, completely dependent on you - and this is pretty out of the blue for Rose. And then there's the prophecy on top of that. While this might lessen Stannous's interest in her, the idea of raising such a powerful witch or wizard is an additional responsibility.

Yikes, the thought of him doing something to the baby is possible. I wouldn't be surprised if he tried to get rid of it to ensure he could have a child with Rose that can fulfill the prophecy.

"Oh my Merlin" sounds a bit off to me. After all, there aren't many Merlins that different people believe in, the way there are gods, so there wouldn't be a need to clarify it's yours you're referring to. If they were to use Merlin in that way at all, and I don't think they ever do in the books, I'd imagine they'd just say "oh Merlin."

*laughs* YES. I think sending Al to get Rose something to eat could be a good way of getting rid of him all right.

Sorry for the short review. Nothing too dramatic happened in this chapter, so I don't have much to say. And yeah, Rose and Scorpius definitely deserve a break for a while. They've a fair amount of stress ahead of them, I'd say between finishing their courses, raising a child and the continued threat of Stannous. And of course, the trauma in their pasts.

Author's Response: Hey there!

The pregnancy was a bit of a shock, but I think Rose is up for it. As for how Stannous is going to take this, that remains to be seen.

Hmmm - I've never thought about it. I feel like I've used "Oh my Merlin" before. But "Oh Merlin" does seem a bit more natural.

Selenia is a master of management. She really knows how to navigate a tricky situation - and Albus!

You're right - not too much going on here. I apologize for the next few fluffy chapters, but thanks so much for taking the time to review!

♥ Beth

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Review #38, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Chosen Four: The Quidditch World Cup

2nd January 2015:
Wow, I really didn't expect the World Cup to be relevant to this, but I suppose it's hardly surprising as it would be a World Cup year. I was reading another next gen which had the main characters attend it too and there was a reference to it at the beginning of my story. This version sounds particularly interesting though. Atlantis!

Yikes, the first line is sort of creepy.

And I really like the way you show Albus gradually coming to terms with what has happened to him. Some stories gloss over the emotional effects of such things and some have it stop abruptly. It's more realistic, I think, to have him gradually come to terms with things.

I'm glad of the overview, as I'd forgotten a few details from the first year.

OK, now I'm intrigued as to what teacher would be crazy enough to use Lockhart's books, especially now he's been proven to be a fraud. And what teacher would expect them to buy a full series of books just to use in one year? Even Lockhart himself seemed to have all his classes buy the series, so presumably they would be referring to them across a number of years, although he did seem to expect them all to have read them in detail before returning to school. But James doesn't seem to be using them. Hmm. I'm starting to wonder if Lockhart is going to return to Hogwarts. Or maybe a relative. I'm probably just thinking the latter because of his niece appearing in my series.

Yeah, I can easily imagine people would still remember what had happened to Defence Against the Dark Arts teachers in the past and be reluctant to take the position even now. Especially, if it came out that Voldemort cursed it, because I'd imagine there'd still be some fear of him, as so many people still remember him or had relatives killed by him or his supporters.

And I wonder why Harry can't tell them who the teacher will be. Interesting.

"My German flag" would probably sound better than "my Germany flag."

And hmm, we're getting a bit of insight into Lily's personality. She seems more interested in the beauty of the island than in the matches. She sounds like she might be a little like Hermione in some ways.

And we're also getting some insight into Lorcan and Lysander. The fact their faces are blank is sort of interesting.

Hmm, I'm now wondering about the McKinnon's baby. I'm guessing he or she will appear in this story, perhaps as the new Defence teacher.

LOVE the mention of how young James and Lily were. An awful lot of fics I've read seem to have the McKinnons and the Longbottoms and pretty much all the other members of the Order who died in the first war around the same age as James and Lily, which makes me wonder firstly, who was fighting Voldemort for the first 6-8 years of his rise to power, while the Marauders were at school and secondly, if he did all his killing in a year or two, why were the characters saying they had little to celebrate for 11 years? Plus, the best fighters in the wizarding world seem to be the older people - Dumbledore, McGonagall, Voldemort - presumably because of their years of practice, so it makes sense James and Lily's skill would surprise the older members.

Oooh, the Chasers on both sides seem fairly equally matched.

Author's Response: Atlantis! Hooray! How do you like the REAL answer on what happened to that island? It has to have some wizarding explanation, right?

Yeah, Harry doesn't really have many emotional reprecussions until the later books- and even that isn't much. Harry never had nightmares about a basilisk or anything. If I were Harry, I'd be tormented by nightmares. It is a good thing I'm not Harry Potter. :)

"What teacher would be crazy enough"... well, there are some pretty crazy teachers out there. Remember Harry's DADA teachers? Wacko.

Well, if Lockhart was returning to Hogwarts (He could've gotten his memories back!) why would he only give the second years his books? Interesting indeed.

Harry can tell James and Albus about the new teacher, but he prefers for the two of them to formulate their own opinions without his influence.

You're right, "German flag" sounds better than "Germany flag". Thanks for that.

Lily admires Atlantis because she's a historical geek and because it's beautiful- but she loves Quidditch too. She can't NOT love Quidditch with her mum, dad, and brothers all playing Quidditch.

Yes, in my head canon the McKinnons were much older, and the Longbottoms a few years older, than James and Lily. There had to be thirty year olds and forty year olds and others who fought Voldemort too. Your logic makes sense, and I was thinking along those lines too.

Thank you for reviewing!!!

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Review #39, by MargaretLaneRainbow: England versus Ireland

1st January 2015:
*sympathises with Hugo* Crowds are bad enough, even when you CAN see what's going on. Actually, I could give a de Valera story here about how he almost got knocked over when JFK visited, because people rushed them, wanting to meet Kennedy, and of course, Dev couldn't see what was happening.

Worry about being late is typical Hermione.

*laughs at him saying Rose was "pretty much" normal* And ACTUALLY, now that I think of it, he mentioned somewhere in the middle of Rainfall that he and Rose were among the only normal members of the Weasley clan. And even though he didn't bring it up at that time, even he's different from normal, as he's blind. You just couldn't leave a kid without serious problems, could you?

Actually, I'm looking forward to meeting more of the Weasley clan. I know James is an idiot and possibly a bully and Albus has Asperger's syndrome or something similar, but you've hinted there are a lot of other issues. Louis seems fairly normal and so does Lily. You'll probably do something to them now. *protects them* But I know little or nothing about Victoire, Dominique. Molly, Lucy, Roxanne or Fred. They could have any issues, for all I know. I suspect at least one or two of them do.

I don't know if you intended this or not, but you seem to have left an extra space between paragraphs near the start of the match.

*sympathises with Hugo, worrying a lot about the future when he's only 10* Not that I didn't worry about stuff like employment prospects at that age, but probably not like he does. Poor kid.

"It's impossible not to be affected by the high spirits of the Irish." Uh oh, Hugo is figuring out our secret plan. *hides evidence quickly*

*huggles O'Mahony and Taylor* They are awesome.

*feels sorry for England* They need a better Quidditch team.

Taylor is REALLY awesome. *sympathises with her* She seems pretty out of it, which I suppose is hardly surprising after being hit with a Bludger. Oh well, at least the wizarding world can heal injuries pretty quickly. It must still have been pretty sore and unpleasant though.

Love the summing up of Ireland beating England by a lot and somebody occasionally getting hurt.

*laughs at Hugo's attitude towards the Snitch and the amount of points you can gain for catching it*

Aw, *sympathises with Hugo* I can understand why he'd be annoyed about how Rose's illness has affected his life. And he can't really complain, because it's hardly her fault. Poor Hugo and poor Rose.

*sighs at the stupid argument between Hermione and Hugo over breakfast* It's clear they're both really stressed and annoyed.

*laughs at Hermione thinking there's something wrong because the Healer is late and the Irish being "ah sure, he'll turn up. No big deal"*

You're in Ireland, Hermione; expect punctuality and you'll be disappointed.

I LOVE Callaghan and I love the way he just ignores Hermione's irritation. But I guess he's used to seeing parents of patients who are stressed out. And patients themselves. And he's used to the Draoithe, who are a bit of a disaster.

It might look better to put "Dad sniffs" on a separate line to Callaghan's reference to his colleagues celebrating, just to separate the two things more.

I LOVE the way Neil just randomly starts offering people cake. *huggles him some more*

I remember my 8th birthday, 'cause there was a huge storm and a load of us got collected early from school and I was afraid my friends wouldn't be able to get to my party. But I don't remember my 7th or 9th birthdays.

And actually that should be Rose's 9th, rather than her 8th, I think.

Poor Rose; it must be really scary not to be able to remember things or do things like walk or talk like you used to and not be able to even ask. I didn't think of it until Neil started explaining - I guess I kind of assumed that she'd forgotten so much, she'd also have forgotten what had been normal for her beforehand. But that's unlikely really. I can't really blame her parents and the other Healers for not explaining though, when it didn't occur to me how lost she must feel either.

And Callaghan does it so well. I think a lot of people would find it difficult to explain something like that to a 12 year old who is probably functioning more at the level of a 3 year old in some ways. And he pitches the level just right - explaining it in a way she can understand and that doesn't scare her, without being patronising. Yet again, he is awesome.

"I'll let ye get on," sounds perfectly Irish.

And I think Hugo is a better judge of Callaghan's skill than Hermione. She seems to have a prejudice against him for some reason. Oh well, I guess even Callaghan can't be liked by EVERYBODY.

Author's Response: Nope, 'course I couldn't leave a kid without serious problems, as you know perfectly well.

She's trying to protect my characters from me again...

I'm looking forward to writing Louis more. He's an interesting character and we'll be seeing a lot more of him. Lily's a lovely kid and basically normal.

Mwahaha, I figured out yer secret plan and am hinting at it to the world! And your attempts to hide the evidence come too late! *cackles* (see I can cackle too).

England do need a better Quidditch team. But you know, us and sports...

Hugo can't really complain and he knows it, and that makes him feel guilty on top of being annoyed at Rose's illness screwing up his life. He knows he's being selfish but can't help it. *huggles him*

HUGO being in the kind of mood he is at breakfast is normal. If Hermione weren't stressed and annoyed, she wouldn't argue with him, though, and he wouldn't get away with refusing to eat it.

Neil knows how to lighten the mood. Randomly hand out cake!

Yeah, it suddenly occurred to ME that she'd be terrified and not know what was wrong, because she hasn't forgotten THAT much. And as she's functioning at the level of a 3-year-old in many ways, they assume she's thinking like a 3-year-old in ALL ways and they wouldn't explain medical details to a three year old. Callaghan is the one character who can just figure out how to phrase it right. He basically writes himself.

Well, Callaghan DID make a bad first impression on Hermione, turning up 15 minutes late. He did manage to be on time for Claire's latest Draoithe meeting, actually, didn't he? But then he knew how stressed all the late people were making her. He was probably dealing with another patient or a student before them and overran. He is very awesome.

As is this review. *huggles you*

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Review #40, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Pureblood's Secret: Breaking Point

30th December 2014:
OK, I'm finally getting around to reading this and I must say the title sounds ominous.

Yikes, those really aren't good outcomes as regards life expectancy. I must say before I read your series, I never thought about lycanthropy reducing a person's life expectancy, but it does make sense and fits with the canon about their aging prematurely. That is sort of the last thing Matt needs to hear though.

It sounds as if a LOT of werewolves are killed by other werewolves, if it drops ten years of their life expectancy.

I also like the way he points out that life expectancy includes those who die at a very young age and how it is affected by WHEN you are bitten, since people often don't seem to consider stuff like that.

If this court were in any way unbiased, this would be enough to prove Boone's innocence. I really hope it does and I really do believe he has a good chance now, but I really don't think it's guaranteed he'll be proven innocence. It's quite possible they will hear only what they want to, what proves their own biases.

Yikes, Matt really isn't coping and breaking his hand adds yet another problem. I'm sure Healer Sterling could heal it immediately with magic, but it's still bound to leave him even more shaken than he already is. Poor, poor Matt.

It's a slight coincidence, my reading this chapter now, as the chapter I'm writing at the moment also has a character with lycanthropy stressing out, though maybe that isn't such a coincidence considering how often both she and Matt do experience anxiety issues. There are a few things here that remind me of what I'm writing though. And you've made me wonder how she might react if she had to give evidence against the villain, which I guess isn't improbable really.

Dawlish's comment about having "a touch" of PTSD kind of interests me. It sounds kind of like an attempt to play it down, which does make sense from an Auror, as I'd imagine Dawlish is used to being tough and in control.

I've a feeling you're leading up to Dawlish playing a large part in this story. I'm beginning to trust him a little more, but I haven't forgotten that we basically only have his word for the part he plays in everything, so I'm not too inclined to take anything for granted yet. I mean I believe he had PTSD, but that is no evidence for or against his having some involvement in the murders or any of the other dodgy things going on - the selling of illegal potions, Laurentis's political corruption. I'd say if he's involved in anything, it's most likely the murders.

That's probably the best result - that Matt doesn't have to give evidence, but what he knows is made available in case it can be of any help to Boone.

I'm also not at all sure Dawlish hasn't guessed SOMEthing related to Matt. I don't necessarily think he's figured out he's a werewolf, but there's something in the way he made it clear he doesn't know the cause of Matt's anxiety that says he's at least figured out it's something confidential. I guess most traumas are things people might be reluctant to speak about, but he seems to have got the impression there's more to this.

I wonder where you are headed with Matt. He really does seem to be having fairly serious problems. Poor guy.

Hope you'd a good Christmas and that you have a great year in 2015.

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Review #41, by MargaretLaneGhosts of Christmas: Ghosts of Christmas

27th December 2014:
I like the interaction between Rowena and Helena when they're skating.

Poor, poor Rowena. You are tempting me more and more to write about her and I really don't want to have to do the research a Founders era fic would require.

You've written "Helena finance". I think you're missing a "'s".

The state Rowena is in now is kind of worrying. And I bet Helena, as a ghost, feels guilty for driving her mother into such a state. Although it's obviously not her fault she was murdered, it still wouldn't have happened if she hadn't run off with the diadem. *huggles them both*

I wonder if the Bloody Baron feels guilty. He ought to.

I'm glad Rowena and her daughter made up, to some degree, towards the end. I actually have tears in my eyes now. *huggles them both some more*

Your two Founders' Christmases have taken up a lot of the story.

And poor Alec. I like the idea that before the Statute, Muggles worked at Hogwarts. I've told you, I'm considering including a Muggle as teacher of Muggle Studies. I'm still working out the logistics.

I like the insight into how Tom Riddle thinks - the way he's never fit in anywhere. And the part about him being half-starved at the orphanage. Poor kid. It seems weird to say that about Voldemort, especially since he was a very nasty kid, but he did have a pretty tough time.

Oh, that part about "before the cold or the Death Eaters got him".

And yeah, there is no way James or Sirius would let that happen as long as they lived.

And ooh, that part about Peter getting stuck talking to some hag is somewhat suspicious, given what we now know.

I wonder what the staff at Hogwarts do do. There seems a limited number of pastimes in the wizarding world.

Ugh, only you would have Christmas reminding Teddy his family wasn't a normal one! And feeling out of place now that Harry has his own children. I actually wrote a story about Teddy's feelings when James was born.

And his description of the castle is a bit like Angie's - almost empty if you don't include the ghosts.

Oh, I like the way you have McGonagall and Sprout sort of have a secret remembrance of that awful Christmas under the Carrows, when nobody else probably knows the significance of the look that passes between them.

Yikes, the last line is ominous.

Really excellent story. You link the various eras so well. *cheers for you*

Author's Response: Every time I write anything Founders I start wanting to write an entire novel in that era. I love Founders, or at least the idea of it, but I always seem to end up feeling disappointed in the ones I find, though I can't put my finger on why. Maybe some time, when I'm a bit further through my series... Founders mystery, hmm? *brain begins to whirr worryingly*

The Bloody Baron does feel guilty. That's why he wears his chains, in penance.

I made you cry again! I'm getting the hang of this! *huggles you* So it's the bittersweet that does it.

I always get carried away with Founders. I really want to write more of the lead up to and aftermath of that second Christmas.

This was supposed to be a happy fluffy one-shot! Yeah right.

Peter talking to "some hag" isn't supposed to be ominous! It's just some random old relative of James', a great-great-Aunt or something who the Marauders don't like.

I do wonder what they do in the staffroom. But then what happens in the hallowed ground of the staffrooms of my own schools has always been enough of a mystery! I know tea is involved, but apart from that... At a boarding school, especially when staff are staying over the holidays, there'd be more time to kill.

Yeah, poor Teddy. *makes mental note to read that one-shot some time* (And we just started this conversation elsewhere and got a bit insane so...)

Yes, I tried to reference back to a lot of the previous sections in the Teddy one to tie it all together.

The last line isn't particularly meant to be ominous, just to bring it round full circle, but I definitely see what you mean.

Thank you! *huggles you again* So, another of my attempts at writing fluff that doesn't involve unicorns (or me suffering from a writing overdose, as per HC collab)... I'll figure it out one day! (Maybe.)

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Review #42, by MargaretLaneActions Speak Louder than Words: Bound by Love: Rose and Scorpius POV

26th December 2014:
You must have been so amused by all the theories in the reviews you received for the last chapter. And only you know which, if any of them, are the truth.

4:30am is DEFINITELY dead of night. I mean, up to about 2, it's possible people might not have gone to bed yet, so while it's night, I wouldn't call it DEAD of night and after about 6, some people would be getting up, so 6 could probably be considered morning, but between 2 and 6 is DEFINITELY dead-of-night, time for sleeping.

Like the comment about Rose having been a Seeker. In a lot of stories, she's not much into Quidditch, so it's interesting to see her as a player.

Aw, poor Rose, feeling guilty about being ill.

And it's interesting, and very believable, that it's Scorpius who notices that the whole thing isn't entirely compatible with panic attacks. Rose is probably so used to her panic attacks and so focused on them that she doesn't even consider alternative explanations, even if she wasn't really feeling panicked at the time.

And *laughs at the comment that eating bread is not a symptom of any illness*

*grins at Scorpius thinking she's being poisoned* It would make sense, considering how she's being targeted. It's just a little amusing, since I got a couple of reviews recently, wondering if somebody was trying to make Rose ill in my story.

Well, this is good news in one sense. Once Stannous, or however you spell his name, finds out, he might lose interest in her. Unless he tries to end the pregnancy. But I guess she and Scorpius ARE very young and not finished their studies yet.

Author's Response: Hi there!

I did get some theories - and many people guessed correctly, but you're right - they were all fun to read!

Haha! Ok - so I usually get up before 6:00am and I've had to get up at 5:00 on a fairly regular basis. As a result - I usually go to bed well before midnight. So, I guess I think of "dead of night" to be between 12:00 - 4:00 am, but I see your point.

I'd always intended to put in a back story about Rose being the Ravenclaw seeker, but I just never had the chance to slip it into the story. I was hoping that it didn't come off too contrived for this little scene.

So, the purpose of the last chapter was to set up for this one. While everyone (even Rose to a lesser extent) has thought that she's slipping away and regressing in her healing process, in reality her symptoms were for other reasons. She's actually doing much better - for now.

Hehe - I liked writing the bread comment. I could just see Rose getting exasperated with Scorpius over him trying to diagnose her.

Yeah, they are quite young, but 21 isn't unheard of for starting a family. And it is good news for now... but I don't think it will remove Stannous from the picture...

Thanks again - so much - for this lovely review!

♥ Beth

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Review #43, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Pureblood's Secret: Panic

23rd December 2014:
Poor, poor Matt. I hope he's not too ill to testify, because if he is, they'll probably just postpone his evidence and he'll have to go through this all over again.

Hmm, I wonder where Lily IS going. Probably to meet a boyfriend or something, but it's possible there's something more to it.

*laughs at Madame Pomfrey threatening to commit murder herself*

I'm not sure whether I hope they let Matt off or not. I guess I do, but Boone needs all the supporting evidence he can get. But then, I'm guessing your characters are going to solve the murders in this book anyway, or the next one at the latest and then he can resume his life. I guess I hope they let Matt off and then the real murderer is found soon, Boone gets help from somebody to resume his life and Laurentis and her lackeys are shown up as corrupt.

Oh uh, the prosecution's attack on Walter is a pretty good one, if they want to make werewolves appear violent and him appear biased.

Sorry this review is rather short.

Hope you have a great Christmas.

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Review #44, by MargaretLaneActions Speak Louder than Words: Bone Tired: Scorpius POV

22nd December 2014:
Oh gosh, I can well imagine Ruth's death would hit Rose hard. After all, this is the person she depends on for support during hard times, so it must be extra hard to have something happen to her. I mean it must feel like the loss of a support system.

And then there is the feeling that her connection with Rose might have been a contributory factor in her death.

Yikes, this guy is starting to sound like a new Voldemort.

LOVE the name of the Aurors' exams. And the whole system of training sounds believable and fits with the world.

Poor, poor Rose. I'm not at all surprised things are getting on top of her - the death of her therapist, the guilt associated with it, the loss of part of her support system, the exams and the prophecy all coming together would affect anybody. And she's still probably recovering from her previous experiences. Even though she's come a long way, it's still only relatively recently she's begun to recover, after two years of struggling. Even with so many additional stressors, it wouldn't be surprising if she had the odd setback.

I like the fact you've written this chapter from Scorpius's point of view, so like him, we only gradually realise what a hard time Rose is having. Not that I don't like seeing her reactions directly - I do, especially as you write them so well - but seeing it from a different perspective is interesting too and allows us put ourselves in the shoes of her family and friends, as they come to the realisation things are getting on top of her, but may not be sure of the details, just as we're not. It also keeps the suspense up, as we don't know if it's a combination of the above that is affecting her or one thing in particular.

I'm glad that what's bothering her now doesn't seem to be TOO serious, unless there's more you aren't revealing yet. She is still recovering and the exams and Ruth's death are bound to add to her stress. That sounds natural enough.

I think it's good you didn't skip over it. If there IS something deeper going on with Rose, a bit of foreshadowing is good and if there isn't, it's good to see that her recovery is ongoing. It makes it more realistic than if it were just forgotten about when the plot moved on. It's also good to see her reaction to Ruth's death, as that is bound to have a significant effect on her.

The indication of Stannous's plans are also intriguing and make me want to know what's going on.

All in all, this chapter is quite intriguing, between the questions about how well Rose's recovery is going and the questions about what Stannous is doing.

Author's Response: Hey there!

Sorry again for taking so long to respond to this. Yeah, Rose has a bit of guilt from Ruth's death - but it's in her nature to take on responsibility that isn't necessarily hers.

Yeah, Stannous is a bad dude. Is it bad that I'm giddy you think he sounds like the next Voldemort?

Rose *has* come a long way. She's actually doing much better than even she thinks. (I think you've read the next chapter by now to know that there's a bit more going on here).

Haha - yeah Scorpius isn't always the most observant boyfriend. I think that having the two different POVs has really worked for me. I really, REALLY tried to write the story completely from Rose POV, but it just didn't do justice to some of the things that I wanted to accomplish. Plus, the story is really about the two of them.

Thanks, I'm glad I didn't skip over it as well. Know how people have reacted to it, I might go in an polish it up, but I'm glad it's there.

Thanks again! I love getting your reviews.

♥ Beth

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Review #45, by MargaretLaneThe Ides of March: Nothing thicker than a knife's blade.

20th December 2014:
Oooh, the magic of the Norse community. That does sound interesting. And it is fairly recent history at this point, so it makes sense it would be of interest to them.

Oh gosh, they have arranged marriages? It must be so hard, in a world where girls and boys are given the same education for girls to have to take a step back after marriage.

You've left out a question mark when Helena asks Helga if one is doing something wrong, "would one carry on with it?"

And aw, the way Helga thinks Rowena would be better able to answer such difficult questions. That seems to fit with everything we know about Helga and Rowena. Not that we know much about them, but we do know Rowena valued wisdom and was presumably, herself, wise and Helga seems like something of a self-effacing person.

And I like the way you portray the religious values of Rowena and Helga. Again, we have no idea what they believed, but it is certainly credible that Rowena might be the sort of person to believe only in what could be proven and Helga the sort of person to have faith in a higher power.

And of course, this is long before the era of Biblical literalism, so Eleanor's attitude to the scriptures is hardly surprising.

Love the imagery at the end of this chapter.

Author's Response: Yes, and I thought it would be something that Rowena would like to explore as it has some sort of mystical and intriguing quality about it, or maybe that's just me who thinks that. :P

Yes, they do, I think they prefer to say helping to find a partner as they would like it if love was there too, but you'll find out more about it later on!

Thanks for pointing that out to me, I just went and fixed it!

I know, it's strange how it is like that because in this case the answer does require some humanity and compassion so Helga is perhaps the better person to answer it rather than Rowena.

I'm glad you liked as it was interesting to try and figure out what they would have been interested in and why they believed in it, because it really is left open to us but there are hints of Christianity within Harry Potter so I thought I would try and incorporate a bit of it here.

Thank you for another wonderful review, it really did make me smile! ♥


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Review #46, by MargaretLaneThe Ides of March: A star riding through clouds.

20th December 2014:
Ho ho ho, here for the Ravenclaw gift tag.

Hmm, I like the line in italics at the beginning. I wonder who is supposed to be speaking it - Helena or somebody else.

Helena is such an interesting character. We don't know that much about her and what we do know seems a little...not contradictory exactly, but not fitting together neatly - she was rebellious enough to steal from her mother, yet she also seems a quiet, studious type of character. So there are many ways to interpret her. Looking forward to seeing how you do it.

Hmm, I've read her as being gay before actually. I like the way she feels so conflicted over it, since she is living in a time when it probably wouldn't be acceptable at all.

And I like the idea of Gryffindor having a daughter. At least I assume that's who she is. We know so little about the Founders' families. All we know is that at least Ravenclaw and Slytherin had kids.

Poor Helena. I can already see why she might be driven to steal the diadem, when she is made to feel inferior for not being wise enough. Rowena does not come across as a very attractive character here.

You write almost poetically. Your use of language is absolutely beautiful. Love the part about the ebony imprint in the snow.

Poor girl. That part about how she doesn't often experience being liked is so sad.

And the conflict between her thanking God for allowing this to happen while at the same time worrying about it being sinful.

Author's Response: Hi there!

With the italics at the beginning, I envisaged it as almost Helena from the future, as a ghost, and that was how she truly felt at that time.

I'm so glad you found Helena interesting and you did a really great analysis of her as I never truly thought about her in that way. I suppose it stems from the way her mother treated her and how her mother loved her but then almost abused so Helena reacts like that too.

Ooh, that's interesting as I didn't think that slash founders stories were that popular.

Yes, she is Gryffindor's daughter and their relationship is explored more later on and he does have an extended family too.

No, Rowena really isn't a pleasant character and their relationship only deteriorates throughout this story rather than grow to be better so her reasons for taking it become more and more obvious throughout.

Thank you so much, that means a lot to me! ♥

Thank you so much for this great review, it was very insightful and it was interesting to read your thoughts! :D


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Review #47, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Pureblood's Secret: The Recipe

16th December 2014:
I wonder if there's something mysterious about the fact Johnston missed the first day of the trial. I'm being suspicious of everything in this story, aren't I? Because it's hard to know which little thing will turn out to hold the clue to the whole thing.

Poor Matt. It's understandable he'd be worried about people talking about him when he has so much he doesn't want them to know about - his lycanthropy, his anxiety. He's trying so hard to appear normal.

*laughs at Albus thinking Rose and Amanda are probably studying, but John and Kaden are probably playing pranks* Even in Kaden's exam year, studying isn't going to be his top priority.

YES! I can see why Albus would want to see Elsie testify. I do too. I'm as disappointed as him, because if he doesn't see it, I guess we don't either. I think this could be the test of which is the real Elsie, because if she IS the quiet, scared kid she seems, who is being bullied by her brother and reacted out of stress when she argued back, lying in court should be very stressful for her. Of course, if she's lying, she's a brilliant actress and might well act stressed so those making the judgement would feel sorry for her and think "that poor nervous little child would never lie in court." But I think it might be possible to get some idea of which is real, nonetheless, because if she's genuinely worried, then I can see her story slipping, especially since she was so anxious to avoid talking to ANYBODY about it and if she can't lie to Albus and Rose and Felix has to watch her constantly to make sure she doesn't give in and admit the truth, I think lying on oath in court would be likely to cause her some confusion. If her personality is a fake though, her evidence would probably be flawless, because in that case, she is a very accomplished liar.

I also wonder WHY she was lying. It implies her family is some way involved in the murders and that it is VERY important that things be covered up well. If they are going to the trouble of having a child sneak into Hogsmeade so she can give false evidence, it sounds like they need to lay a false trail, because if they didn't, the real one might be pretty obvious.

I can't help feeling sorry for Burke. While he clearly behaves in some immoral ways, nobody deserves to have to deal with what he does.

And Albus has pretty much said what I was thinking. Poor Burke.

I think Matt is doing the right thing. Even if it is really bad for his mental and emotional health, Boone doesn't deserve to go to Azkaban for murder and if Matt can help him by giving evidence, he should.

And I can't totally understand how the example of Boone would haunt him. No matter how impossible it is that he would ever end up in Boone's position - for him to be homeless, his parents, Amy, Albus, Rose, John, Kaden and Amanda would probably all have to have died, because none of them would let that happen - but as an example of what lycanthropy CAN lead to, it's pretty stark. And like I mentioned before, as a child, I was pretty creeped out by the fact people were interned without trial basically for being of my nationality and religion. It wasn't a real worry for me, because it happened in a country I didn't live in, so even though Matt is older and more able to see the differences in circumstances and the fact it's not ONLY Boone's lycanthropy that makes him suspicious and causes prejudice against him, just the thought that that's a factor is bound to be scary.

If he found about about two and a half years ago and people don't usually live more than four years, that means he probably doesn't have more than a year to live. Poor guy.

Yikes, I didn't realise Matt's anxiety was THAT bad. I guess the potion is keeping him functional and masking the worst of the symptoms. I SHOULD have guessed really, I suppose. Considering how stressed he is and the number of panic attacks he is having while taking a newly-developed potion by the best potioneer in the U.K., or possibly the world, I should probably have guessed it'd be horrific without it. I suppose I assumed it was only because it wasn't perfected that he was still having so many symptoms and not an indication of how severe his anxiety was.

Poor Burke. Amy had to say what she did, but I doubt Burke liked hearing that any more than Matt did. It's a reminder of how little time he has left, how dreadful the time he has left is likely to be and how much work he is unlikely to be able to finish.

Great chapter and thanks for letting us know of the changed date for updates.

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Review #48, by MargaretLaneTwo Earthly Kingdoms: To Anger a God

13th December 2014:
This does sound intriguing.

I like the way you portray Snape. There's something ominous about him here, something determined. I especially like the comment about his father's "tainted, smoky blood."

Oooh, and I like the conflict between his disdain for Lily because she's Muggleborn and his love for her. So many stories gloss over the fact he was part of an organisation dedicated to eliminating people like her.

Really like the way he sees himself as half a god.

Yikes, that part about him claiming back his birthright is ominous. I wonder what he is planning to do. It sounds scary, like he's going to do something dodgy.

I like the way the war is starting to effect everybody.

And poor Lily and James - it seems like within the space of about 2-4 years, they lost all four of their parents, took part in a war and were targeted by Voldemort. Nobody deserves that.

And OH! that makes so much sense - that he would see a similarity between his mother's marrying a Muggle who turned out to be less than satisfactory and the possibility of his dating a Muggleborn.

Oooh, that part about the Death Mark burning into his skin is stark. You can almost imagine it happening.

Hmm, it makes sense he'd feel that being half blood is going against him. And it does help to explain why he would do something so evil.

I really like the imagery of this story. It's so dark and ominous and shows how Snape is being corrupted.

And that whole thing about how he knows he cannot depend on the Dark Lord's word - it makes a lot of sense.

Love the reference to how he cannot see much difference between hope and despair.

Author's Response: Hey there! Thanks so much for the swap! :)

Thank you so much! I was so nervous about writing Snape, because he's such a big, terrifying and divisive figure. People either seem to love him or hate him, and I've never been his biggest fan so taking him on was something I'd never imagined myself doing. I'm so glad you like him! :) I know, I really wanted to bring to the forefront that he's not just misguided, he's ambitious about his misguidedness, if that makes sense. He wants power, and he thinks he knows how to get it; it's not just that he wandered into the snake pit and couldn't get out :P

The birthright thing came out of the whole 'Half-blood Prince' thing, and the way that seemed to be so important to him when he was a teenager, and something that perhaps he used as a shield or weapon against others in the common room and things :)

Yeah, I'm so glad you like the inclusion of the war - it was surprisingly hard to write - but I wanted to include enough of it that it seemed harsh and difficult, give some reality to a story which is barely grounded in reality, haha. Lily and James definitely have a pretty bad lot in this, and you're absolutely right that no one deserves that! :(

I'm so happy you picked up on that! :D I really wanted to make the connection, because it's the kind of rhetoric he'd have picked up - and he seemingly did pick up in canon - from the purebloods around him, and I thought it was an interesting thing to explore with Snape... the conflict it creates :)

Yeah, he really is being corrupted, but I think as well that he's almost happy to be corrupted - like, he wants to be there, he wants to be better and that means worse, in some ways, and more corrupted, and so he's trying to become more corrupted and darker. Hence the reference to hope and despair - they're both sort of intangible things, things you can't help, really, and both things he has disdain for, in a way :)

The Dark Lord... I always wondered, tbh, why he warned Dumbledore, so this was my sort of attempt to find a reason why, when the Dark Lord had already promised to spare Lily, and that was what I came up with :)

Thank you so much for both the swap and the lovely review - both were so great! :)

Aph xx

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Review #49, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Chosen Four: The Prisoner of Darkness

13th December 2014:
YAY, it's up.

I don't think I've told you this before, but your titles are SO intriguing. "Slytherin's Office," "the Chosen Four."

And your summary for this chapter is also intriguing. And I've now realised I've forgotten to check the summary for the story, I was in such a hurry to get into the story. *laughs*

I had assumed Albus and his three friends were the Chosen Four, even though that would include Albus twice, but I thought that was just a bit of poetic licence to make it fit with the conventions of your titles, but now I'm wondering if these four men are.

And I'm wondering if the prisoner who escapes is Zajecfer. I was wondering had he been arrested or if he'd escaped. I think he might have escaped actually. Should probably have reread your last chapter or two. But anyway, I'll find out soon enough who the escapee is.

You are so good at setting an ominous tone to the beginning of your stories. Both here and in Slytherin's Office, you immediately feel something sinister is about to happen.

I'm actually laughing at the part about being in Antarctica and whether they'll see any penguins.

The King of the Dementors? Interesting. And they seem fairly sure he won't harm them if they rescue him. I'd be wary if I were them. After all, the Ministry thought the Dementors would never betray them.

And Parkinson and Bulstrode. I'm guessing these are the fathers of Pansy and Millicent? Looks like Zajecfer may be reforming the Death Eaters. Although was there any indication in the books Bulstrode was a Death Eater? *ponders* Of course, he could have been even if it wasn't mentioned, but it's also possible Zajecfer's aims are slightly different to Voldemort's and of more appeal to him.

And I'm getting the impression I was right to think they shouldn't trust him.

And that is pretty cruel - deliberately making the prison as tormenting to him as possible. But then considering Azkaban, it's hardly surprising.

I think the length of this chapter makes sense. It gives us an indication of what's going on, without giving us too much detail, so it maintains suspense. We still don't know if these men are connected to Zajecfer, if the Dementor will take part in their plans (though it doesn't sound like it), if he will harm them, if he has plans of his own.

Really good opening chapter. I REALLY wasn't expecting something like this.

Author's Response: You'll find out later about the origins of the title... just like you did for Slytherin's Office.

Ominous tones are brilliant. Thank you!

Yeah, these men are supposed to be kind of stupid and look like fools- it's good that you're laughing.

Keep in mind, almost all purebloods are related to each other, so Parkinson and Bulstrode are almost certainly related to Millicent and Pansy in some way, if not directly.

The prison, torturous to the Dementor, weakens it and makes it so he can't try to escape. If it was dark and cold, the Dementor King would thrive, gain strength, and break out.

During the last chapter of Slytherin's Office, Harry describes how Zajecfer disappeared into a shadow-like thing, even though Zajecfer should have died. I suggest you re-read that section as well. Basically, Zajecfer most likely disappeared like Voldemort did in 1981.

Thank you so much for the review!

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Review #50, by MargaretLaneRainfall: Epilogue

10th December 2014:
Love the harps and are the small drums bodhráns? I like bodhráns. They are awesome.

Oh, I don't know what to say here. I don't want to give away something about my year four, but I sort of want to say something. *grins*

Aw, Hugo's missing a lot when it comes to the game. There's not much to be experienced there if you are blind.

*laughs at the Brazilians getting a good welcome even though they can't have many supporters there* I think the Irish supporters would welcome everybody anyway, both because we pride ourselves on being welcoming (hey, we want money from tourism) and just because we tend to get a little hyper and carried away at events like those and cheer for anybody and anything.

I must admit, I didn't know the Irish for Nambia.

I always think "céad míle failte" sounds a bit Oirish in its translation. I guess it's because we only ever SAY "a hundred thousand welcomes" when translating directly and that's at events like this, which by definition tend to get a bit touristy.

*grins at the cheers dying down somewhat*

Love the comment about us loving our little island. It's such an...Irish thing to say. I've noticed that when Irish officials praise our country, they often precede it with a reference to its size, as if saying "the best small nation in the world" sounds less arrogant than "the best nation in the world".

Dev is approving of her description of Ireland. *cracks up* It just sort of reminds me of his "the Ireland that we dreamed of" speech.

"Blathering" or "blathering on" might have done instead of "talking" there, if you wanted something that sounded more like she was making fun of herself, but it sounds fine as it is.

I don't know if every sport does that - talks about everybody else involved - but the G.A.A. definitely does. They had an ad referencing things like the person who made hundreds of cups of tea for the team and so on.

Aw, poor Hugo. He's feeling resentful of Rose, which is understandable, and then feeling guilty for that. Poor, poor kid.

LOVE the fairy rings turning into hoops.

LOVE the way they translate "slán abhaile", like they did at the Eucharistic Congress. I would NEVER have thought to translate it as anything other than "safe home", a term commonly used in Ireland anyway, until I saw "safe journey home" used there.

Yes, waterproof is ALWAYS a good idea in Ireland, since rain is pretty much guaranteed.

Irish music sung out of tune is a feature of most events in Ireland.

I like the way Rose's illness has made Hugo realise he is "a normal boy" in the words of the title of your one-shot, but it's sad it had to come to that.

Fair play to him for not letting it define him. And if Dev could be President of Ireland at 90 and totally blind, and while blind, able to throw a sliotar (hurling ball) in the air and hit it with a hurley, amazing all those present, I think Hugo can succeed. He's got plenty of talents and he seems to have a fair share of determination too. I think he'll get there. *glares at you* Don't put too many more obstacles in his way!

*huggles you for the note at the end* And congrats on completing your first novel. It's a pretty awesome achievement. *scatters you with confetti* You know you're a brilliant writer, right?

Author's Response: Yep, they're bodhráns, but of course Hugo wouldn't know the name.

Yeah, those situations always make it hard to figure out what to say.

Yeah, obviously something like this is going to be a very visual event and Hugo's missing out on quite a lot. And I was coming up with all these pictures in my head of things like the chariot painting the rainbow and I couldn't describe them! *cries*

Yeah, the Irish supporters are amazing. Totally hyper.

Wow, I "know" a word of Irish you didn't! :P I decided I could probably get away with getting translations for country names myself, seeing as there's no grammar or contextual weirdness going on.

*cough* You might have given me a link to that speech of Dev's when I was writing this... "Our little island" is also a result of stuff you've said. In fact I told you I was having trouble writing an Irish-style speech (because I find English formality so much easier), and I listen to you too!

Many sports do that, especially the big events like this, and it just seemed to fit - and be something included in an Irish speech.

Yeah, this was going to be entirely happy, but, well... this is me writing. Poor Hugo.

Well, "safe home" just sounds ridiculous to me, and for a start I didn't want every (non-Irish) reviewer pointing out I'd "missed" a word or two. So I went with a normal English equivalent - the Eucharistic Conference version from that picture.

Music sung out of tune is a feature of most events in this country too.

Yeah... Hugo's got a long journey ahead of him, and there's some interesting stuff to come. He's certainly very determined.

Thank you so much! *grabs confetti and throws it all over you too* *huggles tightly* Genuinely, you gave me a reason to not abandon this story, and that could well be what really made the difference between this and all my other stories! (Plus I connected with Hugo more than with any other main character.)

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