Reading Reviews From Member: Aphoride
  
293 Reviews Found

Review #1, by AphorideForever and a Day: Forever and a Day

13th April 2014:
Hey there - dropping by from the Blue v Bronze Review Battle! :)

So I loved this. This was so absolutely, completely sweet. The lyrics worked so well with the story and the idea and theme, because the relationship between a parent and child is so different to any other relationship in life, you know? And this really reflects the idea of absolute, unconditional love that that relationship has.

Angelina's character is so sweet and caring, and I loved the references to George, and how you avoided talking about Fred I, you know, because a lot of people compare the two and it's nice to read something where they don't do that.

Your details are so great! I loved how you included little, everyday kind of things in this as well as the big things - becoming a parent and husband and growing up and those sorts of things. The knee-scrapes and things were great too include too - and they really added so much to the story, filling it out so nicely so that even though it was short it didn't really feel that short, you know?

The writing in this was so good, too. It's really succinct and clear and lovely. It flows so well throughout and it's so cute and every word feels so well chosen - there's not one which feels out of place, which is great since it's so short, you know?

So yeah, I really liked this! I'm so glad I read this! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hey Aph!!

So this review was really sweet!! ♥

I'm so glad that you liked the way the lyrics worked with the story, and how I showed the relationship between mother and son. I also am so glad that you loved the George references, and lack of Fred references. I wanted to show that even though George and Angelina were still healing from the loss of him, the son kind of patched up that empty hole.

I'm just so flattered that you liked it, and I actually had to add the part at the beginning because it was too short, so I'm glad you didn't think it was TOO short!!! Thanks so much for this lovely review! I really appreciate it! You're so sweet!

xoxo Sarah ♥


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Review #2, by AphorideFlawless: Flawless

12th April 2014:
Hey there - stopping by for our review swap! :)

So I recently wrote a Bill/Fleur as well, and I do love the pairing so when I saw this on your page I knew I had to stop by! :)

I love how well the quote and the colour suit them as a pairing - I honestly didn't realise this was written for any particular challenge at all until I got to the bottom and saw the author's note :P

I really like how you characterised Fleur - she's still retained the slightly haughty edge from the books, like she knows she's better than everyone around her, but you've tempered it so well with her being caring and sweet and completely in love with Bill and unconcerned, really, for what he looks like because she realises and knows that, in ways, he's better than she is and, perhaps, arguably more perfect. I love that contrast between them and how she thinks that she wants to be like Bill rather almost than like herself... it's such a sweet thing to say, and you manage to avoid it sounding self-deprecating and keep it as more that she admires him and thinks he's amazing, you know?

Your writing in this was lovely, too. There was so much great description and so any lovely little details - like how Fleur had persuaded Molly to go home and get some sleep, and how Bill had woken up before... they're little things but they add things to the story and Fleur's character, you know? The only thing I would say is that you might want to read it over again or get a quick beta/friend to look it over for you, because there were a few places where the grammar was wrong (commas in the wrong places, for example) or the phrasing was a bit odd. I know there were a handful of instances I noticed, but I can't quite remember where any of them were, sorry! But a read through should pick up most of them, I think ;)

Your writing is so lovely, too! I love how so much of it is description and an inner monologue - it works so well with the subject matter and how you've characterised Fleur. It's got such a smooth style and feel to it, it's great!

So yeah, I really enjoyed reading this! Thanks so much for the read and the swap - it was really great! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hello Aph! Lovely to see ya! :D

I love Bill/ Fleur too! They are always so sweet! And besides, their love was true. :) They make a beautiful couple. :)

Aww, thank you! I was a little worried about writing a story for two challenges.

I'm so glad you liked Fleur! She's not that much hard as a character, but in this story, it was difficult to justify her love for Bill and how he was 'the kind of flawless she wished she could be'. That's why it took like three months for the idea to be written down in words. :)

I think the relation between Molly and Fleur became much better after Fleur accepted Bill with all his flaws. That's why I believe that Molly was persuaded to take rest by Fleur and Arthur. :) Feels great to know you liked the little details!

I totally know about the small mistakes. I'll look over this as soon as possible. :)

Thanks for the review swap and the awesome review!

Ashwini


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Review #3, by AphorideRunaway: Should Have Seen it Coming

12th April 2014:
Hey there - dropping by for our review swap! :)

Okay, so I love reading stories about Sirus, particularly about Sirius and his family - they're so rare, you know? - because I'm so absolutely fascinated by them, so when you said this one, I'd already planned to go for this one when I saw your name up ;)

But yeah, I liked how you characterised Sirus - you kept him so close to canon: impulsive, reckless, completely devoid of planning of any kind, emotional (in a way) and so sort of uncaring and just defiant and rebellious. I liked how the whole thing was really, almost, in the end just to annoy his father - it seems a very Sirius-like reason to run away, even if just in the moment!

The details were brilliant here, too - how he changed into Padfoot and didn't want to be spotted, the little mentions of Regulus and how it was his job to be the good son, the gravy on the girl's head (which made me both laugh and wince, because gravy in your hair would not be nice at all!)... it was really, really good! :)

I loved the ending, too - how he just turned up at James' house, kinda wild and almost insane - it really fits him as a way to be, you know, and sort of reminded me of when he escapes from Azkaban - how wild and mad he is then. I don't know if it was something you were going for - but I liked the similar imagery. It worked well! ;)

I loved the way the ending section with James' parents and Sirius practically breaking into their house, lol, was so concise - it make sense, seeing that he's perhaps a bit mad and not really thinking straight and adrenalin is everywhere... it's a bit short, maybe, but I think it works! :)

So yeah, I really enjoyed reading this! I've always wanted to see a story about Sirius running away - now you've written it :P

Thanks so much for the read and the swap! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Aph, hey!

Hehehe, I'm glad to hear that, and yes I have noticed how little people deal with Sirius' relationshi with his family directly, except maybe his brother - we don't get to see him interacting with his parents a lot in FF.

Ooh yay, I'm so glad you think that Sirius was characterised well! Yeah, all those values you just listed are in canon and I'm super happy that you got to see them all in Sirius. Yeah, I think he did need a proper trigger reason to want to leave hom, and I think it would fit his character well if he did it just to annoy his father in the end.

Ahh, I'm so glad you think the details were well done! I'm always trying to add some more details to my stories because I think that it really adds to the story and I'm just really happy to hear you say the details in this were good, so thank you! Oh no, gravy in your hair would not be nice at all, even if you could get rid of it straightaway. :P

Yeah, I was aiming for a bit of foreshadowing there, like how he was on the run for two weeks when later he would be on the run for two years, but I didn't really plan this wild, insane sort of writing, it just happened and I'm really glad that you think it adds to the story instead of taking away from it. :)

Hahaha, I'm so glad you like it! It is short and a bit unclear, maybe, so I might go back and add some deatails, but it's really great that you think that works well!

I'm really happy this managed to fulfill your desire for a Sirius running away story, and I'm so glad you enjoyed this!

Thank you for the swap and the lovely review, I really enjoyed it! :D


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Review #4, by AphorideLost?: Lost?

10th April 2014:
Hey there, Kiana! Been seeing this one-shot around for a while, and finally grabbed a chance to read it now! (It's so much more interesting than an Equity essay! :P)

Okay, so Sirius is honestly one of my favourite characters - even if I don't like him all that much as a person - so I was so excited to see this was all based on him! And around Azkaban to... it's a really dark part of his life - probably the darkest - and it's so fascinating! :) (Also, the banner is stunning. Wow)

So yeah, this is basically everything I love in a one-shot, haha. Well, almost :P

I loved how you characterised Sirius. How he is obsessive over it enough to count the days, perhaps as an effort to remember - like a constant reminder that he's not guilty - and how fixed he is on the idea that he didn't kill them, that it was Pettigrew. It's like a kind of mantra, you know, and I love the repetition of it - you used it so well! :) The use of lost and found and winning was so great too - I loved the dual meaning of 'lost' and how you used both meanings simultaneously throughout the story - James and Lily were lost, Sirius had lost, and then he was winning. It was very clever!

I felt kinda sorry for Sirius in there, you know? Like, he's desperately trying not to go mad and all he's got to hang onto is, really, the thought that he's innocent and ideas of revenge on Wormtail for setting him up for the fall in the first place and killing James and Lily. It's an incredibly sad, haunting thing, and I thought you did so well so convey it!

Little comment about laughing when Bella hallucinates Voldemort, nice :P I can imagine it would be funny at first... but it's really kinda creepy as well O.o

I love how there was this subtle sense of anger and hatred and maybe-not-quite-sane-ness (you know what I mean! :P) underneath the whole thing, particularly at the end. I've never thought Sirius was wholly there, certainly not after Azkaban, and I liked how you sort of showed him shutting down and his whole world forming solely around Harry and how he was innocent and how he was going to get revenge on Wormtail. It's a really sad, scary thought, you know?

Your writing, of course, was so lovely! The repetition was great, and the descriptions and flow and style and all were gorgeous. Really, really nice! :)

Good luck in the Anniversary Writing thing (I can't remember if it's a competition or not? O.o)!

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hi Laura, haha, I do the same when I'm meant to be working as HPFF is suddenly even more amazing!

Whoo, for Sirius, I think that's why I loved writing this because the Sirius before and after Azkaban is so different I really wanted to see why he changed and the one-shot was born :P Haha, yes Laura/envoi really is amazing!

I'm so glad that you liked Sirius, as I've never written a character in such a bad state as he was so, so it was so much fun to explore. I'm glad you liked the focus on James and Lily too, because in the books it always seemed a bit obsessional so I imagined it really manifested itself here. Haha, I have to credit Coldplay for giving me that idea, because initially it was just going to be about James and Lily and then I listened and it was just like oh yeahhh!

I know, he really is in a desperate state here you just want to run away with him to save him from the trauma of all of this. I'm so glad it was ok though, as I wasn't sure whether I was over doing the melodrama of it all or not :P

Yes, I think the treatment he faced from his parents too didn't help much either with his mental state, so it's a wonder that he didn't actually go and murder all those people then because you wouldn't be surprised if he didn't given all that he went through. It really is sad and scary because at that point you really don't know where Sirius is going to go next.

Thanks for such an amazing review, Laura it really put a smile on my face and sorry for taking a while to get this. I can't remember if it was one either but I guess we'll see :P

-Kiana


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Review #5, by AphorideLove and Be Loved: Hope Is Real

5th April 2014:
Hey there! Since I hadn't read or reviewed this before, I thought I'd stop by! :)

So, something like this is always an incredibly difficult subject to deal with, in writing or otherwise, partly because it's so personal and partly because it's just not easy to talk about or portray well, but you've done so well with this. You haven't avoided it, as such, but you've kinda... side-stepped it a bit and taken a more inspirational, hopeful approach to it without avoiding that it is hard and difficult and all those other, blue emotions, you know? You've chosen to focus on hope and potential and why life is worth it and I love it. It's such an incredibly powerful message, even if it's so simple, and you've written it beautifully.

I loved the familial relationship you wrote into it, too - with Fleur talking to Rose. It wasn't patronising or lecturing, it was more like two people on an equal footing, but one who has been there and managed to move past it and keep going talking to someone who's still on that journey, and I loved that. The messages about family and friends and 'trivial hopes' were so brilliant too - I think it's always important to have support, particularly in difficult times, and the familial connection was so good at showing that!

So yeah, this is a beautiful, wonderful, inspiration piece. Having had people close to me (not myself, though) go through incredibly, incredibly difficult times, it's something which really makes me think and feel - which is kinda abnormal for me, tbh. It's solemn, but the issues are really heavy, and you still manage to put a lighter, more hopeful spin on it. You've managed to portray in this all the messages you try to get across to people who are struggling, no matter what with, how large or small, and it's just brilliant.

Really, really wonderful. Honestly. I'm so glad Kiana mentioned it on the forums already otherwise I'd have to now! :D

Aph xx

Author's Response: Oh wow. This review is so sweet.

Your review is so sweet, and I'm so glad that you think I handled the topic well. I had a hard time deciding how I wanted to approach this, because I really wanted to bring light to the situation and to the organization, while still being gentle. I'm so flattered that you liked my story and thought I did such a good job.

I just don't even know what to say right now to this review! I wish I had more words to say more eloquent thank you's with. I had no idea how good of a response this would recieve, so thank you. And now I'm blushing.

Thank you, thank you, thank you! ♥

xoxo Sarah ♥


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Review #6, by Aphoridelow tide: a meditation

3rd April 2014:
Hey there - thought I'd stop by here since this is a new one-shot and has less reviews than some of your other stuff ;) Plus, I'm a bit of a sucker for George-centric stories after Fred's died.

I love the use of the beach in this - how they're all there, and the simple memories it brings back. It's such a realistic thing - him remembering Fred in happy times, randomly, because of little things which have brought it back. It really helps create this wonderful melancholy feeling in this - not too sad, but melancholy and solemn. It's a very... deep sort of feeling, if that makes sense, and it suits George's character very well!

Your description and language in this was lovely, too! I loved how you use your description with the colours of towels and the little things - like the red of the eyelids and things... it's just so gorgeous!

The second person is great here, too - kinda draws you away from it all, make you think of George alone and things, sort of removed from it all. It's a lovely use of the perspective! :)

I really enjoyed reading this! Thanks so much! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hello! I'm glad you chose this one as yes, it's my newest fic and my first time attempting second person POV!

That is so wonderful to hear about the mood of this fic, that it's melancholy but not necessarily sad. I wanted a contrast between the rather whimsical past memories and the sad present, and I am glad they combined well to make that deep feeling you mentioned. I'm glad it suits George, too - I had been unsure about writing George in that he is always so joyful but obviously couldn't be so in this fic, so it's great to hear that even when sad and reflective it still suits George.

Thank you so much about the description!! I am so flattered to hear you describe it as "gorgeous"... !! ♥ I'm glad the second person worked, too! It was an interesting experiment for me but I rather like that POV now!

Thanks so much for your review!!! ♥


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Review #7, by AphoridePlay the Devil: Mysteries

3rd April 2014:
Hey there! When you posted, I had to stop by for more of this story - I really, really can't get enough of it! :)

Okay, so I love how you've characterised Louis. I like how he's gorgeous and clever, but kinda boring, haha :P It's such a lovely and unique way to portray him - I've honestly never seen it before, but I really love it! His mate Archie is great too - I like how he tells Rose about the Time Turner and the experimentation the Department of Mysteries have been doing, even though he's not meant to. It's such a realistic thing, you know - people always want to tell secrets, if they have them. Well, most people, at least.

Rose, as always, is brilliant. I love how curious she is - how it's an almost academic curiosity which leads her to it, rather than anything else - and the way she hangs around with her cousins, and isn't very respectful towards her bosses, and wants excitement and all that. It's such a great characterisation - but then you know that already! ;)

So, yeah, all your characterisation is great.

I'm so impossibly curious about what she stole from the Department is! A potion of some kind... hm... interesting. Will it let her get to the device or let her go back in time? Curious, very curious... I'm so desperate to know - hopefully we'll swap again soon so I can come back! :)

Your details in this are beautiful. They're so detailed and full and rich and amazing. I love them so much, and your writing is gorgeous. They really fill it out. Your writing is so lovely, as always - it flows so beautifully, it's easy to read and lovely... yeah, it's just great.

I'm so excited to read more of this, and really hope I'll be able to come back soon to read more. It's such an exciting, fast-paced story, so I can't wait to get to the bit where Rose goes back in time and meets Richard! :)

Thank you so much for the swap - I always love swapping with you! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hello! :)

I'm so excited that you're liking this story! :) It really is my baby so it's so lovely to get positive feedback.

Louis is a little boring - I love that. :P Louis is such a great cousin to Rose but he likes to keep things quiet and calm. And Archie is quite interesting as well, and he's not very good at not speaking for an Unspeakable. :P

Thank you, I'm so pleased you like Rose! She is quite curious in a way that she likes gathering knowledge and knowing everything about everybody. I find her quite similar to myself in some ways as in many situations I just imagined what I would do - it helps in keeping her character consistent, anyway. :P

Hehe, well the potion is sort of explained... eventually... it's all quite confusing!

I'm really glad you liked the details. I'm sometimes a little wary of over-writing with the details and background, but I really enjoy tying in all these little things. Wow, thank you so much - you really do flatter me! ♥

I hope you can come back soon too - we'll definitely have to swap in the near future as I love having the chance to review your stories! I can't wait to hear your thoughts on Richard and Rose's interactions! :D

Thanks so much for the lovely review! :)


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Review #8, by AphorideMakes Me wonder: The Only Chapter

3rd April 2014:
Hey there - stopping by from our review swap!

So I wasn't sure at first if I was going to drop by on this, seeing as you have loads of reviews on this - but, I love Rose/Scorpius, so I decided to stop by anyway!

I love how you characterised both Scorpius and Rose. How they're similar, and so different, and how they work but sort of fell apart. And I liked how we saw Scorpius through his actions, and Rose through his eyes. It was a great way to do it! I liked how Rose was a free spirit, even though she'd been popular and clever and sporty - sort of perfect, really, at school - but it hadn't all been as easy as might as assumed. The little detail about her hiding for 'admirers' and friends and people to go is such a bittersweet little thing. I liked Scorpius too - how he seems so fixed on her and still misses her, and how he seems so easily embarrassed by normal things - like the condoms in the shopping trolley! Such a funny inclusion! :P

I love how you started it after Hogwarts, and after they'd had a relationship. It's such an unusual starting point, you know - mostly it starts with the beginning of the relationship, rather than sort of after it - and I liked it! I liked how they had this really tangible awkwardness about them at the beginning when they first met and he realised it was her, and then how they relaxed and got on with each other and had this great camaraderie - laughing and joking. It added depth to their relationship which I really liked - it offset the ending, I think.

One quick thing: you might want to look at combining some of your sentences, since you tend to use a lot of short ones in a row, when you don't want to build up tension or anything. If you switch some of the phrasing around, then you can combine them, and it'll flow better :)

I really like this, though. I like how sweet it is and how realistic it seems. Not everyone has those perfect relationships, not everyone gets the girl they want at the beginning, you know. It's such a sweet story! :)

Aph xx

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Review #9, by AphoridePlay the Devil: Rose

29th March 2014:
Hey there - ah, I'm so excited to come back to this story! I was torn between this one and your Pied Piper story, but I chose this one in the end, since I'd already started reading/reviewing it :P

I love the information about her job and how she didn't do as well as expected in exams and feels so much pressure to live up to her mother - at least, that's what I got from it. It's so easy, I think, to forget that they'd have grown up with their parents' reputations over their heads, and that it's a lot to bear as a kid. It's an interesting characterisation of Rose, too - and not one I've seen very often so I like it! :)

Mahaha, yeah summer jobs aren't usually great! Poor Rose... though, ooh, the time turner article in the newspaper... how she goes back in time? And the skull, I'm guessing, is Richard? Aww, love at first sight - not! :P

Hermione and Ron are just so brilliantly characterised, as well. I love how Ron's content to work a fairly boring, low-level Auror job, because it's a change after the war, whereas Hermione likes to be busy and has a high-flying career and all. It's so typical, and really nice to see Ron not quite Harry's second-in-command and things. It works so well with their characters! And Ron blowing up the coffee maker was hilarious!

I loved the last scene so much - with Richard. I love how you explained his character, and didn't tell us who he was immediately, but let us work it out and gradually come to realise his identity. It was such a clever way to do it! I love the details you've put in here, too - with mentioning his brothers, and English legends he was told as a child and things, because they're such great period details! So far, he seems like a pretty nice guy :P And I like how you haven't portrayed him as openly evil or ugly or anything like that... it's interesting and I'm so curious to see how he develops through this.

Speaking of details, all your details, really, in this are beautiful. There's so much in this, but it doesn't overwhelm the plot or the pace or bog it down, you know - somehow you manage to find that perfect balance! :)

I'm so excited with this story - I've missed it, strangely - and I really, really want to read on! Hopefully I'll be back soon! ;)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hello! :)

Ah, well I'm glad you chose this one! :D I really love getting your feedback on it!

I'm so glad you liked the portrayal of Rose as a bit of an underachiever and not living up to what her mother wants for her. Rose is very much her own person and not a copy of either of her parents, and she makes a lot of mistakes sometimes. Also, she is only eighteen and to enter the workforce and find a career at that age would be quite a lot to ask, and Rose isn't quite as ambitious as her mother would like - this only makes me like her more, however. :P

Haha, agreed! Hmm, interesting guess - it certainly has something to do with her adventures. I love reading people's reactions to the skull, it's so creepy but kind of cool at the same time. She definitely wasn't bowled over by his good looks this first time around! :P

Okay, it's so nice to hear you like how I wrote the parents. They intimidate me, and I don't think I could do them justice in Hogwarts-era. Hermione especially is based on my own mum since they have very similar personalities in some ways. I never imagined Ron or Harry for that matter being particularly ambitious or dedicated to boring work in the way Hermione is, so I'm glad you like him here. :)

Richard! Thank you, I'm pleased you liked how he was introduced. I really like working on the period details and how superstitious the people would have been. I'm excited for you to see him grow and change - he's one of those characters I just love to explore and see how people react to him.

Thank you! I'm so glad to hear that - I sometimes get a bit too heavy-handed with detail and description so it's lovely to get such positive feedback.

Thank you so much for the amazing review! :D


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Review #10, by AphorideGravel on the Ground: From the Ashes: Chapter 4

29th March 2014:
Hi there - sorry for the delay in getting to this! RL got a bit hectic for the last while, but I'm here now! :)

You know, this story is one of the one's which I realise I've kinda missed reading when I see it's been updated and things... it's such a unique and interesting idea, and something I would never even dream of trying, so it always impresses me so much! :)

Anyway, I love how you're progressing with Sadie's character. How she's so nervous about being left there, how she wants to stay with Professor McGonagall, how she gradually relaxes and warms up just a little to the Weasleys... it's such a nice thing to see, even though obviously it's just the start and it's the end of it. I loved the inclusion of the sign language and the notebook - how hesitant she was to get it out. She's a phenomenal character and you do so well with her!

I loved the scene from Harry's pov. How he feels like he can maybe understand her a bit, and how he gets the things she isn't saying and kinda sees through her words, where others might not.It's a strangely insightful Harry you've got, but I think it makes sense in this situation, you know? Of all people, he's most likely to understand that! I'm looking forward to seeing him and Sadie interact more! :)

The twins picking up sign language quickly and wishing they'd known about it before does not surprise me, haha.

Arthur and Molly... okay, so they intimidate me as characters, haha, because they're so 'them' in the books and you just manage them so, so well in this. Like, they pretty much are the characters from the book, no questions asked! It's amazing, really!

All the characters are great, tbh. You have a real knack of it! :)

I love how it's moving, as well, how the plot isn't perhaps as quick as it could be, but we're learning about Sadie and she's learning to cope and it's necessary, you know?

Absolutely no problems with pace or flow or mistakes anywhere... your characters are brilliant, your plot is still fabulous and I'm still so curious and amazed by this story so it's all good! ;)

Feel free to re-request! :)

Aph xx

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Review #11, by AphorideHarry Potter and the Plot of Power: 01 For Crown and Country

29th March 2014:
Hey there - sorry it took me so long to get to this! I've been incredibly busy with RL for the last month or so, but it's mostly cleared up now so here I am! :)

Okay, so first off, I love the way you've written it as a number of sections which jump around from place to place and character to character. It really helps heighten the tension and get the mystery element in quick and early, you know? Makes it feel unsure... almost unsafe, if that makes sense.

I love how you're including an older Ron/Hermione/Harry/etc. with a new Minister and os on. It's such a lovely and different thing to see, since usually people don't include them when they're older... but yeah, I love how they're older and more mature but still identifiably them, you know? Even if you didn't have names I'd know who they were - the way Hermione tried to convince Ron to retire, and Ginny and her are ganging up on the boys to do it, haha. Hugo's reaction is such a typical child's response too! I'd be exactly the same, lol...

The scene with the Brigadier and the Major and the others is so chilling. Like, they're not good guys at all, but they seem to almost try and convince themselves that they are, and they don't care about what they have to do in order to protect themselves and 'their' things... I love how we don't know much about them, though - I think it works so well with this. It makes them that much more mysterious and terrifying, makes them more of a nameless face in the crowd...

Also, Hugo! Poor Hugo! And Lorcan... ah, no! I'm guessing the 'body' is one of them... not sure which one it'll be yet, but I'm guessing it's either one of them. Oh wow. Poor Harry and Ron when they have to identify the body - that's really not going to be great! Still, great, great cliffhanger and suspense! ;)

There were a few places here and there where you missed out little words, like 'he'. It's a small thing, but maybe if you read it through - maybe out loud might help more? - again, you should spot most of them. It just jars the flow a bit occasionally, makes it seem a bit strange... just thought I'd mention it!

Apart from that, really, this is awesome! Your writing is lovely and so clear and you're really building in the suspense/mystery element so, so well and I'm incredibly curious to know more! Your characters are all well-developed, and for those who aren't all that well-developed, it works with the kind of character they are, you know? so it doesn't really matter that much!

A really, really great chapter! :) Feel free to re-request!

Aph xx

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Review #12, by AphorideThe Moon Maiden: The Moon Maiden

26th March 2014:
Ah, I can't believe this is over! I can't believe it's taken me this long to get to this! And I really, really can't believe this is the first review on this chapter! (Though it might not be, by the time I finish this :P) So ridiculous... this definitely deserves more reviews than it has!

(Note: this review may be rambling in nature, at times insensible and illegible and filled with squeeing and general compliments about everything... sorry :P)

So, Bathilda. I love her. I just love how you portray her. The way we've almost gone through her life, from young(-ish) to old and the changes she's faced and seen and undergone. I love how she's a bit of a coward, really, even when it concerns things and people she loves, and how she shies away from things which are considered abnormal, despite writing history which is, frankly, full of secrets and 'abnormal' things and scandals and so on. The hypocritical nature of her is just so real and so lovely to see in fanfiction, since it's not always portrayed!

I love the beginning section with her mother's ring on her finger because it had fitted her, though it doesn't any more, and then how she stares out of the window and sees her reflection? An old woman? there, looking at her, and it's her but doesn't seem to be her. It's a beautiful way of phrasing it and such a haunting image.

The cameos were amazing, too! Filius and Albus and Mr Gaunt (last of the sane ones, I assume :P)... though I'm pretty sure Albus' hair when he was young was auburn, not 'sandy' ;) Don't know if that was a mistake or a conscious choice otherwise, but I thought I'd mention it anyway :) The idea that Filius was so concerned about dragon welfare is wonderful, as well as him saving the hour with a quick Aguamenti. Ravenclaw represent, haha!

The mentions of Muriel before the end section were so bittersweet. Because they kind of both ruined anything they could ever have had, you know, and it's not wholly either of their faults, but just something between them, and Muriel is too stubborn to change it, even though potentially she could have, in the end... it's a really sad idea, that she turned into the character we know from the books from that - so angry and old and bitter, and gossiping and rude... it's not a nice ending, really. I liked how she was still able to make a bit of conversation with Bathilda, though, it was nice to see that they could at least have a bit of conversation, despite everything, even if it was tense and awkward, haha. The little details about how Muriel organised Bathilda's funeral and all after she'd died were so sweet, too - that Muriel still cared about her in the end. Gah!

I loved the mentions of the books she wrote and about what, too; how she'd avoided writing about Gellert as far as possible. And I loved the use of Occlumency to block it from her mind so even Rita Skeeter couldn't get it out - and the little mentions of Albus slipping out of the window, arranging his clothes and all... :P I love how astute Bathilda is, that she thinks that information like that could have changed the war, but that it would also overshadow everything else they'd both done... because I think it's still true even today, you know, and it's such a horribly unfair thing!

The ending was fabulous, with the moon maiden appearing and Bathilda being dead and the use of the windows - which was so clever, I really didn't get it until you explained it! - to show different aspects of herself and what could have been, with the demon children... and Muriel! I love the idea that in the afterlife or whatever Muriel and Bathilda had their own little cottage, haha, and lived together :P (With Albus and Gellert down the road, ofc ;D)

Your writing, as always, is just stunning. You capture the era and Bathilda's voice both so, so well. It's so distinctive and beautiful and your descriptions are always so gorgeous. I don't really know what to say other than that it's just so lovely and I'm so jealous of how you can do that!

So yes, this is now one of my all-time favourite stories for sure, and if I see somewhere to recommend it, I definitely will because this is amazing. Just amazing. Honestly. I love it!

:)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hello! :) Wow, this review is just amazing. ♥ Thank you so much!

I love that you love how I wrote Bathilda! :) I grew so attached to her while writing this and I feel oddly protective of her now, she had so many trials in her very long life. And I love how you've noticed how she is hypocritical and very imperfect - in a way, she's more comfortable writing and learning about other people's history than addressing her own, which made her very interesting to me.

Thank you, I'm very pleased you liked that scene! And yes, I didn't want to fully identify the old woman as being a part of her - she is, in a way, but Bathilda is so much more than that old woman who was killed by the snake, which is the message I was sort of quietly thinking about while writing this.

Haha, I'll change the hair colour - good catch! :P I'm pleased you liked the cameos as well, Flitwick just sort of showed up but I thought it was a nice moment since he was one of those people who others would probably underestimate as well. But he got to save the day! I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with young Albus but he sort of had to make a proper appearance eventually.

Yes! It really isn't a very happy ending, until the very end... well, sort of. The fact that they lived for decades with this kind of bitterness and regret, and how Muriel in my mind held a grudge or was quick to gossip about Bathilda to her dying day is quite sad. But I imagined that Muriel would come together in the end to help out when Bathilda had nobody left to care about her. Muriel reminds me of Ron a little bit (though nastier) in how they hold a grudge and talk badly about people but eventually forgive the people they love in some way.

I imagined that while being connected to Gellert would be sort of socially destructive for Bathilda, being emotionally connected to him would be worse. And I wanted her to know that there was some secret affair going on between Albus and Gellert, but not to tell Rita Skeeter, so Gellert placing a block in her memory so she couldn't speak it fit well and seemed like the sort of nasty but self-preserving thing he would do. I agree, it is so unfair how back then this sort of knowledge would have affected the way people saw them, which is just ridiculous but of course still is happening in other parts of the world and even in daily life here sometimes. So I'm really pleased that part resonated with you! :)

I'm glad you liked the windows! I enjoyed building up the hints and explanations and then having the moon maiden explain it all - I actually wrote that last section when I was working on the first chapter so it felt good to finally post it. And haha, that would be hilarious! I didn't really expand much on heaven and what it would be like, but it was nice to hint at some sort of happy ending.

Wow, thank you so much lovely! I really loved writing this and the writing style it needed, so it means a lot to see you say that. Thank you for the beautiful reviews, and for recommending this, and just being so awesome and supportive! ♥


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Review #13, by AphorideFounding Hogwarts: Bretagne

17th March 2014:
Hey, stopping by from the BvB review battle! Found a spare moment during coursework research to pop here ;)

You know, I've seen quite a few Founders stories which say Salazar's parents were hurt by muggles, for fear of witchcraft, and all along that sort of line, but not many which explore his parents - well, his father, really - in this much depth and I really, really like it!

I love the way Salazar's father was a powerful wizard in his own right, and how it seems like young Salazar looked up to him so much and sort of idolised him to the point of wanting to be exactly like him. It's a really realistic thing, I think, for kids to want to be like their parents, but it's not something I see all that much in ff so I love that youv'e included it here! I loved the mentions of Salazar's father being cold and calculating and resentful of muggles, and how Salazar, in wanting to be like him, grew up to be that way too. Kind of reminds me a bit of Draco, you know, how he grew up like that, with the idolisation and then becoming like him (though not quite the same, haha, seeing as Draco redeems himself at the end). It's a really bittersweet thing!

I loved the whole idea of why he joined the school in the first place, as well, why he created it with the other founders. I've never seen a story before which suggested that he joined the others in order to create a school where he could effectively teach pureblood doctrine, but it's a great idea and really suits him, particularly the idea that he doesn't ever really say to the others.

Gah, I actually feel really sorry for him, you know? He wants to be his father, he's been raised to believe that he's special and muggles aren't, that they took everything from him and that he should get revenge for what they've done, and he's so ambitious! I wonder what he could have become if he hadn't been so fixated on revenge...

Anyway, this was a really, really lovely chapter - characterisation, writing, everything was really great! I really enjoyed reading it! :) :)

Aph xx

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Review #14, by AphorideThe Second Act: Act Two

15th March 2014:
Hey there - stopping by from the BvB review battle! Snatched a bit of spare time to read the last chapter of this, because it felt so strange to leave it incomplete, at least in my mind.

Victoire's characterisation is lovely, as always! I love how nervous she is about big decisions and important meals and things, despite her age. Age doesn't always mean a lack of nervous, just generally better handling of them, I think, so I liked that. I also loved how one of her children wasn't quite so accepting - I mean, seeing your mum remarry four years after your dad died must be a strange thing to experience, even if you know that your mum is blissfully happy, I guess. It lent a really realistic vibe to it - and Bill's annoyance with his grand-daughter too.

I loved how again you focused on the important things - like the wedding and the dinner - and then added in the sense of their relationship with details and little things. It's such a lovely way to do it and your writing really shines in it :)

The details, as before, were lovely. I loved the mention of apple pies (making me hungry... :P) and the 'problems' of what to do with them. It was in sense a much lighter chapter than before, and you never told us anything, showing us instead which was great!

I loved the comparisons between Teddy and Dennis. I loved how you showed that her relationship with Dennis didn't mean she didn't miss Teddy and didn't mean that she forgot him and moved on without any effects, but that it worked despite them, in a way, and that they were two completely different relationships and love in two different circumstances and ways. Sort of not more or less, but different.

The ending section was really sweet, too. I liked how it was Iris who was there, and the idea that Victoire and Dennis had asked to be buried in different places, with their first wives/husbands, despite their own marriage. It was sort of bittersweet.

But yeah, in total, this is a really sweet, thoughtful story and I've really enjoyed reading it! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hey! This was such a lovely review and it puts a huge smile on my face everytime I come back and read it!

I'm really happy that you liked Victoire's characterization. Obviously, it's a challenge for me to write a character so much older than me, who had gone thorugh so much more than me... so I'm just really pleased that you thought she was realistic.

Charlotte... she just really loved her Dad and doesn't want anyone to try to replace him... not that Dennis ever would. She can be immature.

Thank you so much for commenting on the details! I'm always really impressed with stories that give good detail, so when people mention that I give good detail, it makes me ridiculously happy!

I was really worried that the comparisons would be too obvious, so I'm glad you liked it!

I'm also glad you liked the ending. I was really unsure about it.

Victoire is sort of based off of my grandmother (I'm just realising this now...), who was married twice. She's still alive, but her second husband was buried next to his first wife and she plans of being buried next to my Grandpa. (It's actually really strange... I'll take her to the cemetary to put flowers on his grave, and she gets really excited, saying "look! Right here is where I'll be buried, isn't it pretty? And there's my brother-in-law, and your Great-Uncle will go there! And your Mom and her brothers can go right here!!"

Sorry. I rambled.

Again, thanks so much for reading and reviewing this. Your reviews have meant so much to me!


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Review #15, by AphorideFounding Hogwarts: Normandie

13th March 2014:
Hey there! Dropping by from the BvB review battle! :)

So I always love reading Founders stories, and when I spotted this I jumped straight here! I love the way you've written it for the Instrumental challenge, too - classical music is some of my favourite to listen to at times, and it's so very appropriate to the time period!

I love the amount of detail you've packed in this. Honestly, it's incredible! I'm always so blown away by people who manage to write succinct, short chapters with so much in them, and it's exactly what you've done here. The little things about his friends and father being scared of him because of his magic, how he hunted and rode and had dogs and horses and the idea of chivalry - they all do so well in describing the era, you know? Making it come alive and breathe and completely definable. Like, if I didn't know what era this was set in, I could probably guess within a couple of hundred years :)

One thing - he wouldn't say electricity, since he has no idea what it is, haha. Maybe lightening instead? It's pretty much the same as electricity, or similar, at least, and he'd know what that was... ;)

That being said, I love Godric's character! I love the idea that although he was outgoing as a child, he almost learned to be brave and had to triumph over adversity to get there - that even though he had a good life to begin with, it fell apart and he had to find his own way. It's such a lovely, albeit bittersweet version of his life - most of the one's I've read have had him from a magical family or rich family, at any rate, and didn't speak much of adversity and things.

Sweet little mention of him having a son and falling asleep in his food :P

Also, I really loved the mention of how they formed Hogwarts - that it was Godric who called on the others to set it up, and Godric who argued for the feast to celebrate and things... again, it's a really unique take on how it all happened, and I really like it! :)

So yeah, I really enjoyed this - your writing is really, really great in this, and your characterisation is fabulous! I'll have to come back at some point to read the rest of it... :)

Aph xx

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Review #16, by AphorideWaltz: Waltz

12th March 2014:
Hey there, just stopping by from the BvB battle! :) When I clicked on your page to see what stories you had and saw this, I knew I had to stop by and see - it sounded so sweet and cute and just adorable, and Molly and Arthur are one of those couples I keep a soft spot for ;)

Strangely enough, this is the second Molly/Arthur one-shot I've seen revolving around dancing and them getting together - it being a way they meet/fall in love/he asks her out, etc. But, it's such a lovely, lovely idea!

I love the premise of having a Valentine's Dance just for the seventh years! I can really imagine Dumbledore loving the concept of Valentine's Day, you know, and it's such a nice twist on the usual 'Yule Ball' theme. The dance lessons... omigosh, I did not expect what happened to happen, haha! I was so sure he was going to ask her out, but I had no idea that that was what Zach wanted to say and what was really going on - I love it! :)

I really love as well how you characterised Arthur. He is bumbling, but he's also brave and strong and determined and curious and a bit silly, and I really thought you brought all those things out in him in this - he really seemed like a younger version of the Arthur from the books. His nervousness and habit of staring at Molly was so sweet too - it's such a typical feeling, I think, and I loved how you portrayed their relationship pre-dating. They're sort of not-quite-friends, and I like that!

A quick thing: you said at one point 'it had become a rage at Hogwarts', which doesn't quite work. I think you were trying to adapt the phrase 'it was all the rage' or just not quite getting it right? Either way, I think that's the phrase you want! I just wanted to point it out since otherwise this was so good and it's a little, easily-corrected thing! :)

So yeah, I really, really liked this! It's such a sweet, simply one-shot and your writing's great, Arthur is such a brilliant character... just so good! :)

Aph xx

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Review #17, by AphorideMy Deep and Black Desires: My Deep and Black Desires

11th March 2014:
Hey there! I'm so sorry this has been so late in coming - almost a month! - life has been incredibly hectic recently, and I'm sort of grabbing a spare moment to send you this! :)

So I really like this! I like how you've characterised Bella - how she's bored and sees school as something not worth her time. It's such a teenage though, you know, so it's symbolic of her age, but also shows her personality off pretty well: the arrogance that she doesn't need their teaching, and the idea that she hates working with others - ironic, then, that she ends up not only working with others, but for Voldemort, you know? I don't know if you intended it to be ironic, in that way, but it is! :)

One thing I noticed is that all your paragraphs, mainly, are pretty short. Maybe try filling them out a bit more - expanding on the things you're writing, going into more depth, more description, expand on what she's doing in class. It's fine as it is, it's just something to think about to improve ;) There were also a few places where some of the paragraphs could have been combined to make a big paragraph - the paragraph break wasn't necessary. Like when she's talking about killing the students - those two paragraphs can just make one. I think that would help!

Your word choice is great, though - I love how you seem to have used a more formal sort of language for her, though you've retained a sense that she doesn't care, since both make sense and really give this the feel of the character, you know?

The details you use are lovely too - I love things which use details to give effect, and you do that really well here, with the mentions of nails and Dementors and husks, and the mention of McGonagall and whether or not she's ever smiled in her life.

One quick thing: Bellatrix was Bellatrix Black before she got married, which I would imagine would be before she left school - Lestrange is her married surname ;) Obviously, if she's married before she leaves school... I dunno, but it just sounds a bit strange and I thought I'd mention it anyway! :)

Hope this was helpful and I really enjoyed this - feel free to re-request for other stories in the future! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: No problem - I completely understand and i appreciate you taking the time to critique.

I'm glad I've characterized her well. I used to write her all the time but this was my first attempt in a couple of years. I've still got it apparently! I didn't intend for it to be ironic, but sometimes that makes it all the better and makes it more natural. I don't like forcing things.

It's funny - my Lit teacher constantly reminds me to write longer paragraphs while he has to remind my classmates to make their paragraphs shorter. It's something I struggle with, so maybe I'll go back and see what I can do about it.

I purposefully made her speak formally because she is a member of the most ancient family Black. She would have been raised to be a proper lady. But at the same time she doesn't give a crap.

Yes! I have good details! That's often something I struggle with, so that's spectacular!

I actually realized that a few days ago and I debated changing it to Black. Ultimately, I decided to keep it as it was because to me it just makes her seem more crazy to me.

Thanks for reviewing!



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Review #18, by AphoridePure Intentions: Red Balloon

7th March 2014:
Hey there - thanks so much for the swap! :) When I saw you asking for it, I knew I had to come back to finish this story - it's been far too long since I read the rest of this and didn't finish it!

First off: NO. How can you do this to me?! What? They can't break up! Al and Brandon were such a lovely couple! Brandon was so good for Al! Gah, poor Al! I feel so so sorry for him!

But but but - Scorpius! Yay! I'm so glad they're at least friends, because they deserved to have some kind of relationship, given what they used to have, you know? It's kinda like a turning point for them. They've both grown up and made peace with themselves, and they're so much more settled.

So, in a way, even though this doesn't end, as such, in terms of their relationship being restored or broken forever - it's kinda a strange note to end it on - it works, because it ends with them turning a new leaf and all that jazz, you know? So it's kinda an ending and a beginning, at the same time, which is a great way to do it. It's a really original ending and all, I think.

Your characterisation and plot and setting and all are just lovely, as usual.

I've really enjoyed this story - it's been a really great read and a really nice, thoughtful story. Really, really great read!

(Sequel? I think I heard this mentioned at some point... lemme know when it's up! :D)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Howdy Aph!!

I'm so happy you came back to see the last chapter!!!

I'm sorry!!! I had to separate them so Albus could learn to grow on his own! He needed to be more self sufficient or he'd use relationships as a crutch forever. There may be a chance at them rekindling something eventually (in a sequel).

I liked ending the story at a turning point. I mean, it resolved the heartache issue that the story set off to talk about and set up what is probably going to be a sizable sequel. They both are quite different people than they were at the beginning of the story. Scorpius has learned to stand up for what he wants and not just do as he'd bid and Albus is one who will not take being in a secretive/dark corners relationship and knows a bit more about what makes him happy.

The ending was a bit unconventional, I suppose. I thought it would take more story time to fix their relationship than it took to bring them here. They're at least at a less turbulant part of life between them.

:D I'm so happy that the plot and characterization were good!!

I've really enjoyed following your reviews and incredible feedback. You've been super helpful and fun. :)

(I keep saying that I have one and I do - I'm not sure when I'll get to writing it out. There are a few plot points I need to decide on)
Thank you so much for such an awesome review!

-Rose


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Review #19, by AphorideThe Safety of the Shadow: Leaving Your Comfort Zone

6th March 2014:
Hey there - dropping by for the review battle! :)

So when I saw this on your page, I knew I had to drop by because I'm always so impressed by people who manage to fit so much into small word counts, like this - partly because I waffle on like nobody's business, as you can probably tell :P

I really liked this! I love how you've kept it short, and yet there's so much in it. Seriously, I could never do something like this - short, but so poignant, with so many themes and feelings all tucked into it. I love how it's sort of like a kind of flashback thing, how Rose is thinking of the things which have happened in the shadow and at school, and everything which has gone on and how she's grown up and changed. It's really lovely reflective tone you've got in this - it's great!

Also, I love the shadow itself. How it's the shadow of the school which has impacted her so much, and the idea of the change and how it's always been there. It's kind of like an obscure reference to time, you know, the way you've used the prompt. The idea that the seasons and time, therefore the shadow of the castle, is something of a constant and just keeps going, and it's safe and protective and now Rose is leaving.

The reference to being passed over from the safety of the shadow to a different kind of safety - the safety of love with Scorpius - was such a lovely touch, too! :) It's kinda like a maternal thing, you know - like a child growing up, almost literally, and the shadow's like a mother, and now Rose is leaving and growing up and her relationships are changing, becoming less childish... I have no idea if that all made sense, haha, but I hope so! :)

There were a few bits where the phrasing and sentences were a bit odd - just sounded kinda like phrases left on their own and maybe needed linking to something or re-phrasing? If you look over it again, or get a friend to look over it for you, it should help! It's a minor thing, but I thought I'd mention it anyway since it's something which can be fixed :)

But yeah, I really enjoyed this! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hi!

Thanks for such a lovely review! I really appreciate all of your nice compliments! I was nervous that this wouldn't be well received because it was kind of a strange prompt. But it was fun to write once I got going and I'm glad you enjoyed it.

I'll definitely have a friend look it over for those places and to neaten it up. Thanks for pointing them out :)

xoxo Sarah


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Review #20, by AphorideEvasive Normality : Prologue

22nd February 2014:
Hey there - thanks so much for the review swap! :)

So, I'm a huge fan of post-Hogwarts and post-war stories. It's such a traumatic and difficult time for all of the characters, you know, but it's also such a fascinating time, with people dealing with so many different, hard things...

I really, really like how you've characterised Harry! I love how he's finding it so difficult to cope with everything - with all the deaths he feels like he caused and all, and everything he feels responsible for - because it's such a human reaction. People can't be strong all the time, and they can't always deal with everything, particularly something as intense as that in such a short period of time.

I love the way you have the Weasleys and Hermione and Ginny trying to help him, and talk to him and be there for him, but he's the one pushing them away because he feels guilty and all. They're all pretty loyal characters, so it's such a good way to portray them!

The details in this were great too - how Harry's now a godfather and has a responsibility to Teddy, how Hermione's parents are still in Australia with their memories removed, how Fred's died, how Colin Creevey had his camera on his chest... they're such simple little things, but really, really great! :)

The only thing I would say is that you could maybe do with a little more description - like, when Harry pulls the covers over his head, what colour are they? Are there any smells around, like from food? Any noise in the background? What's the weather like - is it raining or windy? Your writing at the moment is great, really nice and clean and lovely, but a bit more description would make it even better ;)

Also, there's kinda odd formatting thing down at the bottom of the page - a quick edit would sort that out! :)

Apart from those things, which are fairly minor in the scale of it, this is a really good start! It's really interesting, and such a realistically sad beginning - your characterisation, as I said, is excellent. Really, really good.

So yeah, I enjoyed reading this - thank you again for the swap! :)

Aph xx

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Review #21, by AphorideSev, You can stop oiling your hair now!: Sev, You can stop oiling your hair now!

22nd February 2014:
Hey there - thanks so much for the review swap! :)

So, as it happens, I've read a couple of different versions and reasons for why Snape's hair is so greasy, and I really liked this one! The idea that he oiled his hair when he was young, and then carried on doing it because Draco, as a child and then later as a teenager, liked it was pretty sweet - and really original! It's a very definitely idea to anything I've seen people suggest before.

I liked how you characterised Snape and Draco, as well. How Snape loved Draco, even if he didn't show it all the time, and how he wanted Draco to love him and be fond of him. It's such a bittersweet gesture, you know, with everything to do with his parents and Lily and all. I also really love that you played up the Snape-is-Draco's-godfather thing as well, since that's something I don't see mentioned all that much in most stories! :)

I liked how you went through scene by scene, with different instances as Draco grew up where Draco liked Snape's hair and the oiliness of it. Some of them, particularly the early ones, were really, really sweet! Baby!Draco was just adorable! :) And it really showed the way they sort of bonded as Draco grew up, and how they became closer, to finally end with Draco considering Snape almost as a second father-figure.

I have to say that I'm not a huge Draco/Hermione fan, but I liked here how the focus wasn't on the Dramione element - it was on Snape and what he did and his contribution, revolving around his hair and the oil in it. It was such a lovely focus, and allowed the AU elements and things to go along, you know?

There were a couple of places where the wording was a little strange, and you used the wrong word, but it's nothing major! Maybe if you look it over again and read it out loud, that would help?

Still, I really enjoyed this - thanks so much for the swap! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hey,

Thanks for the review swap too!

Glad you found the story original and interesting... I was aiming for a different and humorous view to their otherwise dark lives and it came across. Yay!

I'm constantly feeling sad for Snape. I'm not a Snily fan and think James/Lily are an awesome couple but when you look at it objectively, you realise Snape gets the most-alone person award. I might be getting off topic, but you get my drift.
Snape is Draco's godfather in my head since the beginning and I thought that for Snape to be like second-father figure, he needs to close to Draco. Hence, the godfather position.

I am a hard-core Dramione fan and it took a lot of effort and self-talk to stop myself from shifting the focus of the story. And to keep the AU from sounding too wrong and out of place. Whew! The effort paid off...

I'm going to take your advice and try and read it aloud... Maybe, hopefully, I'll find what sounds wrong?

Thanks again.Your review was real helpful!

Kinnu


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Review #22, by AphorideThe Moon Maiden: A Man's World

22nd February 2014:
Hey there! I'm so so glad I got an excuse to come back, because I do honestly love this story. It's just so beautiful and tragic and mysterious. It's wonderful! :)

I love Bathilda. I just love how you've characterised her - how she's clever, and lonely, and so in love with Muriel, and so secretive about what she knows and so loyal not to reveal other people's secrets... at the same time, she's so cautious and unsure of things and I liked how she couldn't quite work out Mrs Prewett - it really made her human and so realistic, you know? The idea that despite being good at reading people, some still elude her.

Muriel is so great as well - how she's so desperate to know what went on with the Dumbledores, and the truth of it, and Bathilda just refuses to speak of it. She's such an innocent girl, but has this strange sort of maturity which I think you only have when you're that age, when you think you're mature, you know? It's great! Mrs Prewett... I actually feel kinda sorry for her, cooped up in the house, probably bored, I'd imagine, desperate for something to do, maybe lavishing everything on her daughter and all... it's not a great life, really, and you can't wholly fault her for being suspicious of Bathilda.

Your details in this are fantastic. I loved the little bits - the demon children clawing away at the door, the 'feigning of shame' with Gellert, the references to mythology and the story of the Moon Maiden, the tapestries and so on... it just makes this such a rich story, if that makes sense.

I love your writing, too. It's just so beautiful. You manage to keep the mystery of what's happening to Bathilda in the first and last sections - is she dead, is the woman who 'visits' her real or not, who is the woman who visits her - but not make it overly mysterious and complicated, so that it's hard to follow and understand. Instead, I'm just curious ;) Your phrasing and words are so gorgeous, too - I love all the little things you include, like the period gesture, such as 'was it not' and things... it's just so lovely!

You're teasing me with the Albus/Gellert, as well... what happened? What did Bathilda find? Gah, I wanna know! I'm so curious!

This, as always, is just beautifully brilliant. Let me know when the next chapter is up! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hello! :)

Aw, thank you so much dear! I'm so happy you're liking this. It's just such a joy to work on and unlike any story I've written before.

I'm really pleased you like Bathilda! I've grown quite attached to her as well. It's lovely to hear you find her realistic, and the contrasts between her love for telling stories and her need for secrecy because of how dangerous the secrets are. You're right - there are some people who she can't quite understand, or she doesn't want to understand fully. Mrs. Prewett is quite a contradictory person herself.

I'm glad you like Muriel - I felt it was important to show that gossipy, rather pushy side to her. I love your comment about thinking she has that maturity - that's just how she is. She likes the idea of having freedom but doesn't quite grasp it for herself. I'm quite glad you felt sorry for Mrs. Prewett, as she grew as a character I saw how she does focus in on Muriel and is quite protective of her, but has some demons of her own.

Thank you! :) I love writing the little creepy details and the anecdotes. Being a mythology nerd I just couldn't resist.

Aw, wow, thank you! :) You're so sweet. I'm glad you're curious about what exactly is going on and how it's a little obscure and mysterious. I can't promise it will ever be completely resolved, the way the last chapter is looking at the moment. I love writing the historical parts and trying to get into their heads a little - it's a bit easier than writing the 15th century in PTD, but I still want to get the feeling of the era across.

Curious is good! :) Yes, Bathilda was being quite mysterious about the boys. :P Partly, she doesn't want to fully admit it to herself.

Thank you so much for the amazing review! ♥ I really love hearing your thoughts and reactions to this story. The next chapter will be up in the next week! :)


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Review #23, by AphorideInvisible in Death: Ghostly Day

21st February 2014:
Hey there - here for our review swap! :)

So, I know I still haven't finished reading and reviewing Pure Intentions, but when I saw this up I just had to read it! A mystery! With Myrtle (and young!Tom Riddle, young!Hagrid)! Gah, even though we know who the killer really is, I'm just so curious as to how this is going to play out and whether Myrtle is going to find out, you know? Somehow, mostly due to your writing and plotting, it doesn't matter that I already know how Myrtle really dies :)

I love Myrtle's character. In this, you do so well at showing us the aspects of her character we already knew from the books and develop it further. I like how she's such a mixed bag of traits: she's being bullied and has little self-confidence, but is also capable of holding pretty serious grudges, pretty nasty herself (when she wants to be) and actually fairly clever. It was such brilliant characterisation! :)

I love the whole start of this and how you moved so quickly through the murder and all. Because we know how it happened, you didn't need to talk all that much about it, and everything. I loved as well how you showed us Olive bullying her and how cruel she was and how she came to, effectively, help Myrtle to die, in a way. I also really liked the scene when she'd just 'woken up' as a ghost and had to work out, sort of, that she'd died and that no one could see her. I thought you did such a good job of portraying it - and it was such an interesting idea! :)

Your writing is so lovely, as well. It's so clean and clear and your phrasing is great... and I'm so envious that you can write things with such a fast pace and so much action! Gah, this was such a great read!

I'm really, really glad I did this swap with you - I will definitely be looking out for more chapters, and seriously hoping you get more reviews because this really deserves more! :) This is a great, great start and I'm so curious to know what happens next!

Thanks for the swap! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: I couldn't be happier that you picked this one!! It was all sad and reviewless. :D Well, there's not a lot of mystery for the reader - just to the characters. I think this is my first mystery actually.

Writing about Myrtle as a living girl was kind of interesting. I thought it'd be fun to make her annoying but not so irritating as she is as a ghost. She's definitely not a totally likeable person here. I can't tell you how excited I am that you liked how I characterized her!!!

I didn't think there would be a lot to elaborate on before her death expect to set up her pain and general life stuff. But, yeah, I thought her story after death would be more interesting. :D Having Olive be an over-the-top bully was my way of justifying how much Myrtle stalks her as a ghost. Part of me was all "get a grip lady" then I decided to give her reason to earn an official no-more-haunting ruling.

I'm jealous of your writing so we can just wallow in mutual jealousy. :D

Thank you so much for such a wonderful review and for swapping with me!!

-Rose


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Review #24, by AphorideJust a Little: Just a Little

21st February 2014:
Hey there - dropping by from review tag! :)

When I saw this on your page, I had to read it. I have something of a soft-spot for James/Lily, particularly with goofy, over-the-top Sirius in it as well. So this sounded pretty much perfect ;)

I love the whole premise of this! It's such a cliched thing in ff, you know, the whole 'locked in a broom closet together and snogging' thing, so I love how you've taken a different spin on it, with them being locked in but not kissing and not wanting to/intending to and not finding it funny. Well, James did, a bit, haha, but still!

I loved how you characterised James in this, as well. How he was sort of sweet and a bit silly and his mind was always turning away from the problem at hand and not really paying attention... it's such a great characterisation of him, and one I don't think I've seen all that often, so I liked it.

Lily was wonderful too! I liked how she was so angry about being locked in a broom cupboard without her wand and instructed to snog - I would be too in that situation! - but wasn't really mean to James, even if she didn't believe him that it wasn't anything to do with him. Which really is fair enough. I loved the way she blushed towards the end and sort of admitted it was nice and kinda almost that she liked him - it was a really cute and sweet scene!

I'm so amazed by the way you kept what was going on, really, from the readers until the end. The whole 'last night' thing had me guessing until Lily said it - I suspected, but wasn't sure. It was such a neat little twist - I really loved it! :)

So yeah, this was a really, really great one-shot! I really enjoyed reading it - and good luck in the competition! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Yay! Another James/Lily fan! And a goofy Sirius fan!

I purposefully chose the most cliched setting I could think of. I love a good cliche, but I really wanted it to be done well, so I tried to give it a bit of a twist. I'm so happy that you found it effective!

James is one lovestruck boy! I had a lot of fun writing his inner monologue. His rather stalkerish fixation on Lily is endearing in a way. I kind of see him as being a bit dorky, like Harry, so when people write him all confident and suave all the time, I have to imagine that he has these ridiculously dorky thoughts.

EVERYONE should be angry to be in Lily's situation, regardless of the fact that you like the other person or not. The entire situation is a little ludicrous, mainly because Sirius is a little ludicrous. I'm happy that you liked how she reveals how she really feels near the end. I wasn't sure how well-received that would be.

I'm glad that the suspense was maintained! I wanted people to have an inkling but still have this big reveal for poor Sirius.

Thank you so much! And good luck to you as well! I really enjoyed your Regulus/Barty story :)


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Review #25, by AphorideThe Moon Maiden: The North Window

18th February 2014:
Hey there - stopping by for our review swap! :) I'm so so glad you posted that, since I can't believe I didn't spot this story before and so it's a perfect excuse to leave off studying Tort Law and read this :P (Not that I needed much persuading, tbh)

So, I was incredibly, incredibly curious about this even if just for the fact that it's a Bathilda/Muriel, which is one of those pairings I've never come across before, or even heard of, yet seems somehow like it could work quite well, despite the age gap there would have to be between them.

I love your characterisations of Bathilda and Muriel. I love how Bathilda is sort of like a hoarder, of information of things she's interested in, perhaps even of secrets. I dunno, I just get the impression that she's sort of like a kind of well of information, you know, things go in and they don't come out. It's brilliant! I love Muriel, too, how I can really see how she turns into the woman we know from canon - with the horrible shrill voice, barking orders at people, and so on. She's younger here, obviously, and perhaps a bit more innocent and naive, and less 'I know everything', but still enjoying a good gossip - which seems so integral to her character!

I love the way you write this, as well, with the different sections, where Bathilda and Muriel are younger, and then later when Bathilda is older, and the strange woman (I dunno who she is... Rita Skeeter? Or a more mythical figure, like the actual Moon Maiden or something? I don't know the story behind the moon maiden, though, if there is one, so... *shrug*). The differences between the two sections are so clear, but at the same time the style is the same and the writing just as beautiful :) I really love how incoherent the older Bathilda sections seem - almost like she's not even sure what's going on, and it's such a brilliant quality to manage to evoke in writing - I have no idea how you did it. It's amazing.

Your writing is gorgeous. Seriously. It's just flawless. Everything flows so perfectly, and it's almost poetic in the way you've written it. I found it oddly ironic/clever how Bathilda seems to refer to her living as 'her heaven', but there are 'demon children' outside and things like that... I just love the juxtaposition of the two things :)

So yeah, I love this. I will definitely be back, and have yourself a favourite in the meantime ;)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hi Aph! :) Ah, I'm so excited you came to read this! Hehe, always glad to provide an excuse for not studying. :P

I'm glad you found the pairing interesting! It sort of occurred to me while I was re-reading DH and I knew about teh's challenge so this was the perfect excuse to write it. I did play with the ages a little bit by making Bathilda younger than she might have been, but logically it sort of fit as JK seemed to have written her as like 140 by the time Harry came along. :P

I'm so glad you like them! Yes, ah, that's just how I saw Bathilda! :D She loves learning and writing and translating history for other people. It's wonderful to know you thought Muriel fit with canon. She was just so obnoxious and hilarious in canon, and here I hoped she'd have the basis of that rather selfish and judgemental nature. Writing her love for gossip was so fun!

I'm really happy to hear you liked the structure and the different scenes as well. I had a lot of fun imagining the afterlife scenes especially. The moon maiden story is something I made up, but then I googled it and apparently there is some story called the moon maiden which has a similar-ish concept... well, sort of. :P I love your comments about how the story felt incoherent and scrambled for the older Bathilda - that's just the mindframe I was in when I wrote it, as if things shift into existence and go from being clear to confusing really quickly, so it's lovely that you picked up on that.

Wow, thanks so much! ♥ I'm so honoured you like the writing style! :D It's never really specified whether Bathilda is alive or dead, in heaven or in... that other place which is not 12+. So I'm glad you like the contrasts and the juxtapositions. I had so much fun writing this and no idea how readers might react so it's so lovely getting your feedback.

Thanks so much for the amazing review, dear! :D


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