The sections with the Death Eaters are so interesting! It's really great getting another perspective on the war, even if it is quite chilling to see the preparations of Voldemort and his most trusted servants. The juxtaposition of Lucius' fear with Bellatrix's fervour was brilliant in the opening part of this chapter. Bellatrix always seems much more committed to the actual cause than Lucius, who always seems to be out to serve himself more than anything else.
I love the way that the boys are so protective and loyal and just such good friends, not only with each other but they look after the girls too now that they've been absorbed into their group. It makes me want to be friends with them all too! Another element I liked here was the way that James and Lily are so aware of each other, like Lily noticing when he steals Alice's tart, and their more playful interaction with each other here.
Sirius and Belle! Oh, they're so cute! I loved Sirius trying to convince himself that it was perfectly normal for him to want a moment alone with one of his friends, it's so realistic. And then he found poor Belle with that letter, which was simply horrible. I'm really intrigued by her situation and what it was that actually happened in the past to cause her to leave Beauxbatons and come to Hogwarts. It seems like she and Sirius have some similarities in their family backgrounds, and I think they'll make a really cute couple. I hope they get together!
"Blue against grey. Steel against sky." - this line was just so perfect and I don't really know what to say about it but I had to mention it here because I love it so much.
I've never seen a story which dives in depth into the transformation process and I found it really fascinating to read about here. The idea of writing from James' POV when he's a stag is brilliant! You've put so much thought and detail into it and it really shows and that sort of thing always makes a story so much more enjoyable for me to read. I like the way that they have to think more animal thoughts to transform into their Animagus form, and then shift to human thoughts to change back. I also like the idea that they've put more preparation into it, by working out the spells necessary to help someone if they're stuck in their animal form.
The last part also had a brilliant balance between humour and pain. I'd never thought that there might be one full moon that's actually worse than the others - poor Remus! You could obviously sense the agony of Remus' transformation into a wolf but also there were comical moments. James' thought about his antlers growing had me laughing - it seemed like a very James thing to think!
Another amazing chapter! This is such a compelling story!
Sian :) Report Review
I'm so excited to have some time to get back to this story again!
So the infamous Violet has made a reappearance of sorts in this chapter? I think I dislike her almost as much as Lily does here - how dare she do that to James? I loved the way you described Lily's anger at the beginning of the chapter (I could quote it back at you but then most of this review would be quotes) - your descriptions and imagery are so lovely throughout the story so far and you manage to get just the right balance with them.
Okay, so I know I said I wasn't going to quote during the whole review but this sentence " as an ocean of memories came crashing through her, catching her in their current and pulling her into their sea." just made the transition into the flashback so seamless and flawless that I really think it's perfect. The flashbacks work so well because they're not overused and they have a purpose - it's great learning about Lily's childhood and her relationship with her parents and sister. I find it so hard to believe that Petunia and Lily just cut off contact completely when their parents died, since Petunia sent Lily that vase and I think Lily even attended her sister's wedding. The way they make up here is so cute, as if they think everything is going to be made better, and it's so sad that their relationship becomes even more damaged through the years. I'm looking forward to seeing more about what happens between the sisters in the rest of this story.
Aw, James and Lily's 'talk'! Do you know how hard it is not to fangirl over that? Seriously, James is such a lovable character in a non-playboy way; he's just so sweet and genuine and I can definitely see why Lily falls for him. I definitely wasn't expecting Lily to admit she likes him, and I don't think James was either, but maybe that will make things easier between the two of them from now on? I know we know that they'll end up together but now they do too (if that makes sense!).
I think I know which line you're talking about, because it kind of killed me: "We have all the time in the world, right?" I just want to yell at them to hurry up and get a move on because they're living on borrowed time and it's so sad!
Am I detecting the hints of a future relationship between Belle and Sirius here? Spying on James and Lily's private conversation seems like a very Sirius thing to do, and I like the way that James and Lily get revenge on them. The comment Sirius made about preferring the wet-dog look made me laugh as well!
It was great to see Peter here with his 'Gryffindor' qualities, standing up for his friends. And I love the fact that in this story he's a real part of the friendship group because that is so rare in Marauders stories. The fact that they treat him like you would expect someone to treat a best friend makes me so happy! Although I think there were also hints of certain elements of his personality here which will be used in the future to make him turn sides - the need for approval and the ability to lie to others. At this point he's still very much best friends with them though and I really love that.
The friendship scenes are some of my favourites in this story, because they capture so perfectly what teenagers and best friends are like. And there was a bit of mystery at the end - I'm curious about whose eyes those were!
Sian :) Report Review
You've been spoiling us with updates recently, and I'm definitely not complaining! I saw your status about the latest chapter of this on the forums and came straight over.
That opening paragraph was so compelling and effective! I found it quite chilling, the almost poetic way that you were able to describe what was happening and the horrors of the war. It must have been horrible to know that Penny's death has been completely futile and the first of many, in a way that they are powerless of stopping.
I liked the fact that you included Dawlish as the Auror interviewing Verity, because that helps anchor us to the HP books and the familiarity makes it more believable. We don't learn much about Dawlish in the books other than him being a bit of a useless Auror, and he came across as quite a cold, removed character here, but that worked for that scene. The way that Verity was finding it difficult to speak and form sentences was realistic to me and showed that her grief is still massively affecting her life.
You also managed to continue that theme through the chapter without pushing it to the forefront. Except for the incident in Sebastian's flat when she was unable to repair the mug she'd dropped, the other allusions to her magic 'not working' were quite subtle. She seems to have enough to deal with without the loss of her magic as well, and I feel really sorry for Verity here. There's so much that she's going to have to go through and cope with and it's not likely to get much easier for her in the near future.
My favourite part of this chapter were probably the flashbacks to explain how her parents met and how Verity came to be working in the shop. There's something quite detached in those sections, as if she's just commenting on events without any real emotional connection to them. One part I particularly enjoyed there was the way she described, so matter-of-factly (yes, that is a word :P) the illegal goods that the shop sells and the customers that they deal with. It's very business-like and I think that reflects her personality when it comes to work.
I was really pleased to see Verity returning to work and realising that she needs to interact with other people herself. From the impression I got in the first chapter, being cooped up for weeks with only Sebastian for company probably wasn't a good thing for her. I like the relationship she has with Borgin; very warm and almost like a father-daughter relationship, especially the way that he was happy to see her return to claim her property.
George was characterised well in this chapter. I can easily imagine the twins popping over to Borgin and Burkes to find ingredients or items for their products. He seemed outgoing and cheerful, which the twins definitely were at that point, and his enthusiasm about the shop is infectious. I can understand why Verity seems to be attracted to him, even though she's embarrassed by it and will probably feel guilty. You got the humour right as well, with the mention of what their product development has done to Fred.
The ending was a bit of a cliffhanger, and I'm really intrigued (in a none morbid way) about who has died next. Obviously the deaths were at the hands of the Death Eaters but since at this point (I think) the Ministry are still denying the return of ol' Voldy, I'm interested who they'll try and attribute the deaths to - Sirius Black, maybe?
There were a few little typos in this chapter but nothing really major, and I'm sure a quick read through would sort that out.
You really have such a lovely, natural writing style and I seem to love absolutely everything you write - I hope you update soon!
Sian :)Author's Response: Hi dear! I'm loving this short queue, but you're the one who spoils me with reviews! I'm so excited that you're keeping up with and enjoying this story. Seriously, this made my day! :)
I'm glad you liked that bit at the beginning, and found it chilling. Since this story happens right before Voldy actually became public news, I imagined the DE as smugly taking out potential enemies one by one to garner fear and suspicion.
I'm also pleased you liked the addition of Dawlish, I thought he was quite a weak and almost pathetic character in the books and I knew he and Verity would clash. It's also good to hear the grief is still coming across well, even if she's had a little more time to process it than in the first chapter.
Ok good, I'm glad you thought it was subtle. Verity has sort of accepted that her magic has left her for now and there's nothing she can do about it. You're right, things are going to get harder before they get easier.
I'm very happy you liked the flashbacks, I felt they were very important stories that Verity would have collected and wanted to tell. And yes, she is very business-like when it comes to the shop, and these dark and mysterious objects are in a way just products. I loved imagining and writing these sections, so I'm very glad you liked them! :)
I know, I'm glad she got out there again as well! I think a good way for her to deal with grief is to go about her daily activities and talk to her friends. I'm so glad you liked the portrayal of Borgin as well: he's such a slimy, two-faced character in the books, but I think Verity brings out the fatherly role in him. Also, since Verity never really knew her dad, she sees Borgin as a sort of fill-in parent. :)
Ok good, I'm glad you thought George was alright. I had this clear image of his character, but not sure how it will match up perfectly with the books since we never really see the twins as separate and in a adult-world or talking to girls situation. And you're right, Verity is a little confused! :P
As for what happens, well more will be revealed in the next chapter! :) I do want to give a bit of an original spin on the DE rising to power and killing people, and there's more than meets the eye... or there will be, if I figure out how to write it properly! :P
Thank you for another wonderful review on this story my dear, and hopefully updates will be up soon! :D Report Review
Hey Lauren! I'm here for the Gryffie review exchange :)
It's been so long since I read a Sirius/OC story, and I don't think I've ever read a Marauders short story before so I'm really excited to be paired with you for this!
It's quite unusual for a romance story to start with the couple already together, so I already like this story just for that. It's really refreshing, actually. I thought the way that you showed the progression in their relationship well through the flashbacks, which were just the right length and fitted so well with the rest of the story. The switch in perspectives can be quite awkward but it flowed here and worked for this chapter.
I think your characterisation of all the canon characters is pretty much spot on. Sirius was cocky and playful, but I liked the fact that Lydia could notice the effects of the war on both him and James, even though she doesn't know about the war. Sirius' feelings for his friends were clear too - the way that he loved James and Lily, and how much he cared about Harry.
The friendship between James and Sirius was pretty much perfect. You wrote the way they interact really well. Some of my favourite Marauders scenes are those when they're just relaxing with their friends and spending time together, and I thought you got their playfulness and banter completely right.
I love Lydia! She already seems like a really strong OC and the fact that she said no to Sirius straight away and continued to do so made me like her so much. I can understand why Sirius would take that as a challenge and I really like the way you write their relationship; they seem to get on really well and know each other, like Lydia knows that Sirius is hiding something from her but hasn't pushed the point yet. It seems realistic to me.
Sirius telling her that he was a magician on their first date is brilliant! Why have I never seen that in another story? It would make so much sense and be a lot easier for the witch or wizard concerned to talk about what they do! Another thing I really liked was the obvious animation and excitement when Sirius finally told Lydia about magic, and the fact that he was sharing his world with her at last.
I thought that the development in Sirius' feelings was really well done. There were hints and changes in his attitude, like the way he gradually became more concerned about her safety and put protective charms up, which the reader could pick up on but Sirius obviously didn't, since it hit him at the end of this chapter. I've always imagined that he would find it hard to open up and accept a relationship but I'm rooting for these two so much now!
As for CC, I would recommend that you just go back and read over this again for a few typos, but it's nothing really major.
I also think that you mean 'reverie' here "pulling her out of her revoir" instead of revoir.
I really enjoyed reading this and I'm going to carry on with the rest of it when I get a chance!
Sian :) Report Review
I am so flattered right now for the mention at the start of this chapter! From a writer like you? Seriously, I'm grinning like an idiot here!
Okay, so it's really hard to write a review about the first half of this chapter without using a lot of exclamation marks and fangirling a lot, but I'm going to try...
First of all, Fred telling Amy he loved her was so cute! The way he's so unsure about what's going to happen when Amy goes back to Hogwarts and he's showing some insecurity even though he's normally so confident about girls and life in general. They're a sweet couple and I hope they do stay together when she's at Hogwarts - Amy's good for him!
I loved the fact that it took Fred telling James that he loved Amy for James to realise that he also loved Avery. It's so typically James! And then Avery, cool as a cucumber, acts so casually about it because she's known all along. Not that there was ever any question, but her self-assurance as far as James is concerned is really refreshing, since girls are normally the insecure ones in stories, but that's James here.
And Bink might be making some similar statement to Rose soon? That's really interesting. It's sad that he's not been at the tryouts, though, because I was convinced that he'd managed to get a position on a reserve team or something. I hope he manages to get a job of some sort soon!
Okay, I was almost crying with laughter during this tea party that James had to go to! It was just so funny all the way through and everything about it was perfect. The characterisation of the children was brilliant, especially the little girl bossing people around and wanting to be grown up and have James as a boyfriend! James may have just become even more adorable because of it as well :P
I can definitely imagine Avery listening at the door and laughing at his predicament while he's stuck in there with two demanding children. It just fits so well with everything else in their relationship-friendship.
I'm really looking forward to the next chapter and what happens with their plan to get away for the weekend and sort things out!
Sian :) Report Review
Oh no, what a cliffhanger! That's mean!
The opening with James and Brigid discussing his options for other teams makes me think that he's a shoo-in for the England position, because if they're asking for him even before he's made it known that he's available, then he's got to be brilliant. I'm interested to know what he'll do with those teams. Do world cup players go and play abroad as well or does the competition take place during that time? And I wonder how Carlotta will affect his decision as well, since they're not at a stage where she would automatically go with him to Australia or anywhere.
I love Lily in this - she's one of my favourite characters. She's so hardworking and ambitious and has done so much to get to the position she's in. It can't be easy for any Squib, but in a family like the Potters it must be even harder to deal with. It's great that she has such brilliant friends and has learnt to deal with it and move on with her life like normal.
The part with Maddie trying to hide all the quaffles and chocolate frogs from her parents was hilarious and I could picture it all so vividly! I hate packing as well so I can definitely understand why they were all desperate to be able to use magic but had to avoid the Muggles seeing them. I'd forgotten about the wardrobe as well, but the idea of Harry doing something like that which he's not really supposed to is funny - I can easily imagine that happening!
Carlotta is really becoming more comfortable with the wizarding world, isn't she? I really enjoyed seeing her go to Diagon Alley by herself and gaining by it because she's a Muggle. I love that she's so fascinated by everything that the wizarding world holds and what she can take from it - including the cooking. I'm not entirely sure that pumpkin would go with fish, but she might as well try... :P
And the phone call! That was a cruel cliffhanger to leave this chapter on! I'm convinced that James is going to get the offer to play for England, because he was chosen once before and everyone can see how talented he is. He really deserves it! And why else would he get a call if it wasn't a call up for England? But I'm still nervous in case Demelza is worried about his past behaviour and decides to go for someone else. Now I've just thought that it might not even be a call about quidditch...you're messing with my mind here!
I'm really looking forward to the next chapter and I hope you update soon!
Sian :) Report Review
Ooh, these predictions! It would have been quite easy to make that cliche when you wrote it but I think you did a good job of making it seem realistic. Does this mean Emma Turbine's aunt is Trelawney? Poor girl! That would be enough to drive anyone insane, in my opinion!
I'm not going to try and predict who the predictions are about (that sentence confused me a bit!) because I'm awful at guessing what's going to happen in stories like this. But it's interesting that you mentioned Tor won't marry the person she's meant to be with... I'm curious if that means that Terry survives and they simply don't marry, or he's one of the people who dies because of her. Lots of possibilities with that one, and I'm really interested to see what happens there.
As for Emma, I think she seemed a little old at times, a bit too mature for her age. I suppose that could be justified with the fact that her abilities as a Seer have caused her to grow up quickly, but I think maybe it would make more sense if her confidence was toned down a little at times, at least while they are inside Hogwarts and other people might be around.
I loved Tor's comments on first years getting smaller - I swear I think that all the time! I like the fact that Tor's becoming more interested in muggles just because she's found out that Terry's a Muggle-born. It could be quite a dangerous interest, though!
Tor and Terry are just too cute! Her indignation when he kissed her even though that's what she wanted - it's so sweet and very teenage girl :P It's definitely characteristic of the beginnings of a romance - though one more hampered perhaps than most normal teenage relationships. I also have a feeling that Tor's decision to pursue the relationship and think about the consequences later could be the ruin of them - maybe even what causes someone she loves to die? I don't want it to be Terry but at the same time at this point I can't imagine Tor marrying Draco if Terry was alive. Of course, I don't know what is going to happen in the future, and there's a lot of the story to come!
Haha, "the ASS duels". I just laugh at that every single time I see it written down - it's an oddly humorous name for what they're doing, really. It was quite scary here to see what Tor's really capable of - what she's prepared to do in order to win. There's a definite ruthless Slytherin (or maybe Yaxley) streak in her, but I hope that might change a bit in the future, or that she learns to repress it. I can understand her desire to beat Malfoy and the others, especially when they're treating her so unfairly. It reminded me a bit of the fight between Harry and Draco in the bathroom; Draco tries to use an Unforgivable Curse and Harry has to retaliate in whatever way he can to defend himself. But Tor's so young and naive, and it is quite unnerving that she cast the Imperius Curse at her age.
Another great chapter, though, and I'm sorry I'm taking so long to get round to reviewing them all!
Sian :)Author's Response: Hello! :)
Ah, I know about the cliche thing. I wrote this bit before really realizing that the seer thing was a little cliche, but decided to keep it because I love the excessive foreshadowing! :P I was thinking of changing this bit around, maybe even having an ominous narration instead of the character of Emma, though she is fun to imagine running around Hogwarts with her toad! :)
You're silly, you're very good at predicting what happens in this story! :P To be honest, I haven't 100% decided what will happen however. There are lots of possibilities, and I'm excited to explore them!
I'm glad you think they're cute! :) I really want to make their relationship seem as natural as possible, to explain why they like each other enough to risk everything to be together. As for what happens, well... I can't say much, but it will be very complicated. :P
I know, Tor really showed her colours as a death eater's daughter. Like Harry, she did what she felt she had to, and it shows her darker, more ruthless nature which she does repress around positive influences like Terry. I'm glad you enjoyed that scene, however! :D
Thank you for another great review darling, and you are such a gem for reviewing all these chapters! :D Report Review
This chapter managed to make me really happy because of the update and sad because of what's happening at the same time. I almost want to stop reading because I don't want to see how it all ends, even though I know already... I could never stop though, don't worry!
The beginning of this chapter felt a bit like we were returning to the beginning of the story, almost as if the story is coming full circle. Venn's motives for marrying now are similar to those he had initially; securing his inheritance and power, and producing an heir. Helena's attitude towards marriage has almost returned to what it was at the outset of this story as well. It's so sad that the love story has turned tragic and they won't have a happy ending, because I've been wanting it for them so badly, even though I know it can't happen.
The scene with Salazar and Venn really served to show the differences between their family and the Ravenclaws, but also that Venn, in taking after his uncle and listening to what he says, is becoming more like him. Blood purity and their attitudes towards women are so similar now and it's clear to see how the same attitudes have continued to the era we see in the books.
Even though Venn definitely shares some personality traits with his uncle, I thought it was also obvious here that his views aren't as extreme, especially with his attitude towards the Basilisk. It is definitely understandable why Helena fell in love (or at least thought she did) with Venn. I'm really interested to see what happens with the Chamber of Secrets storyline, since Venn knows about it but obviously doesn't approve. It'll also be great to see how such a great secret leaks its way into other people's knowledge and becomes a legend.
I really liked Isobel's character in this as well. I think her youth makes it more believable that she wouldn't conform quite as much to convention as her sister, who is shocked by her behaviour. It was great to see her challenge Helena and I think Helena was probably amused by it as well. One of the things that I feel sad about in this chapter is that Helena won't fulfill her promise to Isobel.
Venn's appearance was perfectly timed, and the change in his tone and manner of speaking was so marked from the chapters when he was trying to court Helena and they thought they loved each other. He seemed so detached and cruel and to me Helena's reaction was completely believable and I can understand how she saw it as the only option. Venn's threats about her non-appearance at the wedding helped to foreshadow the ending really well.
The ending was so sad and dark! Of course I knew that it was going to happen soon and I really enjoyed the way that you wrote it. This line in particular "She did not need a castle, not when all of nature could be her home" was very poignant. It seems there's a kind of naivety to her still and maybe she doesn't realise how hard it will be for her to flee her family and home. But I thought each detail of that, including when she took the diadem, was written brilliantly.
I know that you said you were concerned about the readability of this chapter, but I really don't think you need to be. It was compelling and engaging, just as your writing always seems to be. The only thing that confused me was this: "with no concern for a husband and unborn children". Is Helena pregnant? I may just have missed it completely but I didn't realise that anything had happened that could result in that. Or is she just talking about the children she would be expected to have if she married Venn?
Something I always like about this story are the historical details you include and the real effort you make which help it to seem more authentic and believable as a reader. And I always enjoy finding out things like the game Truth or Dare being so old, which I didn't know about before.
I'm kind of not looking forward to the next chapter because of what's going to be happening at the end of this story, but as ever this was another lovely chapter!
Sian :)Author's Response: Hi again, Sian :)
I love that you pointed out that we are returning to the beginning of the story in terms of Venn and Helena's attitudes toward one another and marriage. I think I wanted to bring it back to that here at the end but hadn't really consciously tried to do so, so I want to jump for joy that it came through anyway. You're right, we are coming close to the end now and their fates will be sealed.
I'm happy that you can appreciate the intricacies in Venn's personality. He's really struggling for some direction because he stills feels inadequate for all that he has to take on. He's unwilling to totally forsake his instincts and follow his uncle, and yet he clings to what he does know, including old and tired beliefs. There was hope in the beginning that maybe Helena could mold him away from that, but for whatever reason, they have both returned to the people they are seemingly meant to be.
Yeah, the thing about Isobel is sad. She can't really understand all the pressure Helena is under, not that Helena has let anyone in enough to help her with the enormous burden.
It seems like you felt that Helena's flight was well-timed and logical, which is good, because I struggled slightly with the thought that maybe the situation wasn't yet drastic enough and yet I didn't want to introduce anything resembling forced marriage into the mix at all.
You are the third person to interpret 'unborn children' as Helena being pregnant, so clearly I need to go back and alter the wording there :D No, Helena is absolutely not pregnant, no worries. I'm merely referring to the family she would have eventually with her husband. You're right, nothing has happened that could have resulted in an outcome like that.
I totally didn't know that Truth or Dare was so old until I wrote this and wanted to attempt some kind of citation for it (fruitless endeavor, really). The original was called "Question or Command," not far off from the title I chose.
Thank you again for this truly lovely review :)
-Amanda Report Review
Hey Kiana! I didn't get chance to leave a review when you updated this the other day, but I really wanted to tell you what I thought about it.
I think this chapter was even better than the first one, which is saying something. You have a real talent for parodies - I was laughing all the way through! That first line "Michael Corner knew he was some hot stuff." made me giggle so much. The continuation to this chapter from the last one worked really well.
There was so much in this that made me laugh that I could probably quote the whole chapter back at you if I wanted to! The comment on blondes always beating him to the girls was great, and the way he used tanning booths instead. His thought process was hilarious, too, like when he saw Millicent Bulstrode and thought she'd do if he couldn't find anyone better, and when he overruled the fact that Lavender is crazy because she's hot and famous.
"The power of the raven would triumph over the lion and snake." - a bit of house pride coming out in you there, isn't there? :P
Lavender was fantastic in this, and I'm really enjoying her. She works so well for parodies - it's kind of like we see her portrayed in the films here. When she was describing how she tried to get Viktor Krum to make Hermione jealous I found it hysterical!
It's great how romance takes the precedence in this, even though they've all fought this horrible war against Voldemort. It highlights how silly they are and works so well for a parody/
Michael as a womaniser works surprisingly well! He probably fancied himself after going out with Ginny and Cho Chang - the two girls that Harry Potter, the Boy Who Lived himself went out with. That's some sort of claim to fame for him, right? And you wrote it in quite a believable way, as well as me laughing all the way through!
I'm looking forward to the next chapter of this - it's so fun to read and a refreshing change to more serious stories!
Sian :)Author's Response: Hi Sian!
Haha, I think I preferred this chapter too, because writing big-headed people is a lot of fun :P I'm glad that you liked the continuation because first of all it was just going to be random stories thrown together but this was a lot more fun!
I'm so glad that you wanted to quote a lot as that's always a good thing! I thought the inclusion of the blondes would be fun to thrown in because there's always the hot blondes in every society! Of course he's not going to reject Lavender just because she's a bit pyschotic, that would be mean :P
Yup, Ravenclaw is awesome so I had to include it!
I feel a bit mean showing Lavender in a bad light because I do like her as a character, but like you said there are so many angles you can go with her it would be a shame not to include her!
Of course romance is more important! If Voldy had some in his life, he may have not gone to war :P
I'm not even sure why I decided to make him into one but I thought it would be fun :P Thanks for this amazing review and I'm so glad that you liked it :D
-Kiana Report Review
Argh, I'm so behind with reviewing for this and I need to catch up as quickly as possible so I can tell you what I thought of the latest chapter (which I read as soon as you updated :D).
I really like the idea of Yaxley and Amelia Bones. I wonder how different their children might have been if the two had continued their relationship? But I liked the fact that it showed even Death Eaters aren't completely without compassion. The story was sad in a bittersweet way - I felt much more for Amelia Bones than Yaxley, but it was sweet to see him reaching out and offering her comfort in her last moments. It's horrible that he had to watch as she died, but even if he had, as Snape did, begged for Amelia's life, I don't imagine Voldy would have shown him any mercy. In fact, he might have even forced Yaxley to be the murderer (he's a nice man, ol' Tom Riddle). But I think he also has to preserve himself before other people (Yaxley, this is) - as most people have discovered, escaping the Death Eaters isn't really an option.
Ginny and Tor's friendship works in a strange way. I think if they'd come from different backgrounds (or more similar ones, if that makes sense) then they could have been quite good friends from the beginning. I like the fact that Ginny is acting as a sort of messenger between Tor and Terry, as well as seeming more open-minded and willing to think Tor can change, because that fits with what we know of her character.
Tor's indignation at the way Terry and Ginny had been discussing her made me laugh. She has this sense of superiority that's been bred into her and she can't forget, making her think she's allowed to discuss other people in the same way but nobody should talk about her as such - after all, remember who her parents are! It's pretty hypocritical, but she doesn't seem to realise that. Still, that fits with her age and what she's been brought up to believe in.
I think Dumbledore was probably quite surprised at Tor's perceptiveness in this chapter, when she asked if objects can have souls. It's sad that he doesn't have the time to keep his eye on all these students and save them from their families and themselves. They still are children, really, and like he realised, they don't understand the implications of the war. They're so eager to grow up and get involved, and it's really sad to think that they could find themselves in the midst of something far out of control.
Another great chapter, darling! I'll be back as soon as possible to review the next one!
Sian :)Author's Response: Hello! :) Oh, you are just too wonderful for taking the time to re-read each chapter and letting me know what you think of them! I really appreciate the feedback! :D
I'm glad you liked the Amelia anecdote! I kind of planted the seed for it in Chapter 5 but somehow it took until now to take shape. I'm glad you felt sorry for Amelia, but also that it gave Yaxley some redemption: he isn't all bad, after all! And yes, he decided to protect himself, and by extension his family, by keeping quiet and doing what he could for Amelia in those last few moments!
I'm glad you like Ginny, and her strange friendship with Tor! You're right, they definitely would be friends if they had more similiar values and oppurtunities to bond, I feel like their personalities are very similar in a way! I'm glad you think Ginny fits with character as well, I really enjoy writing her! :)
I'm glad as well that Tor's sense of being superior is continuing to shine through, though she has a lot of changing characteristics and abilities as well. I try to give her those little selfish and immature moments, since really she is just a fourteen year old girl!
I know, Dumbledore is in a tricky situation! Being Dumbledore, he wants to help all the students, but of course he has to concentrate on Harry and the Horcruxes, and those in immediate danger like Malfoy. It is sad, to think of the impact on kids like Tor and how things could be so different for them: it's just as dangerous as being a Muggleborn, but in a different way.
Thank you so much for this really lovely review, my dear! :) You're just the best! Report Review
Wow - I think this has to be my favourite chapter so far, Jami. There's just so much in it and I'm so impressed that in five chapters you've already managed to create such a complex and intriguing plot!
So, the first part...I can definitely understand why I've heard so many brilliant things about your Bellatrix! I've been so excited to see her in this story and I know there will be a lot more of her (or I hope) to read. She's just perfect (in a horrible, crazy way). Your characterisation of her is spot on from canon, the way she wants nothing more than to please Voldemort and do his bidding - is even willing to suffer the Cruciatus Curse for her mistakes - it's just fantastic! I know I should be able to put this more articulately, but I'm struggling...even the way you capitalise 'Him' and 'He' to illustrate the reverence she treats him with, worshipping him like a God. I love it!
Voldemort's speech is great as well - he talks in this exactly as he does in the books. That seems like something so hard to get right and you've written it so well.
And you managed to fool me with the last chapter! (Maybe it was just me being dense...) For some reason I didn't think about it being James they wanted to convert, but from what we know from canon, of how Voldemort tried to convert them, it makes perfect sense. I didn't entirely trust Alrek in the last chapter, but now I don't at all, since I harbour strong suspicions that he's the new Death Eater - although Lily and James don't know that!
It's lovely seeing a sweeter, softer side to Sirius, because not many stories show that. But when he asks about Peter, with genuine care, it's great to see - also because with that we learn more about Peter's background, and you're adding some real depth to his character. Also the friendship between Sirius and Lily is adorable! I love seeing Lily being friends with all the Marauders, and not just James or Remus. I'm so curious about the secret those two are hiding from James - I hope we find out about it soon!
The part when he found out about Regulus becoming a Death Eater was so sad! I felt really bad about him, but when he says that James is his brother it was so sweet! And very true as well!
James is maturing too, like when he tells Sirius not to follow Lily to see what she's doing with Alrek. He's also realised the problems that Lily faces in beginning a relationship with him, and it's good that he can now acknowledge that (of course, there was never going to be any question of him sticking around, was there?).
Haha I love Lily in this chapter! Pretending that she's not hungover just to rub it in the boys faces - what a girl!
I thought you got Dumbledore across really well here. This line in particular "It's a marvelous thing, you know, finding beauty where destruction has touched." sounds so Dumbledoreish (yes, that is a word :P) to me.
Another fantastic chapter - I really am starting to love this story!
Sian :)Author's Response: This chapter, I think, is when I really decided I wanted to make this story my own and make it what I think their 7th year was like, both the students and the developments of the war. I always felt like it's the one that sort of gets the story going, so I'm really happy you feel that way too ♥
Awww hahah!!! Bellatrix is an addiction, I swear. And yes, she ends up being in here pretty often. Enough to make you scared for the group, at least ;). I'm so excited you though her and Voldemort were written to fit canon here. Voldemort is still really difficult for me. Him and Dumbledore... I don't know if I've ever talked about my Bellatrix head canon/trick to writing her, but if I haven't you should totally PM me.
I think I actually originally intended it to be Peter, but then my Peter head canon changed and James felt more realistic for where I decided to go with it. i fooled both of us :P!
You, m'dear, are insanely perceptive. I'm afraid to even say anything now without giving things away, haha!!!
I'm so exciting you liked the friendships between the boys and Lily! The secret come out in chapter 8, and I can assure you it's nothing romantic ;).
I wish I could just send you my face right now so you could see how much these reviews have made me smile. I know jumping into such a long story isn't anything easy, and I sort of think you're crazy for trying, but I'm still so insanely exciting that you like what you've read so far ♥
Thank you so much Sian for all the lovely compliments and just making my day!
First of all, I love the opening line to this chapter! Using 'wand deep' instead of knee-deep really helps us immerse ourselves more in the wizarding world and makes it seem more realistic. You did that somewhere else in this chapter too and it's really clever.
The part where Lily was working on her potions assignment was really interesting. I liked the way that you explored the two different potions and made them sound realistic, especially with the medical explanations of their effects and what could happen if the potion goes wrong. I've also never thought about how the Wolfsbane potion (and others) would need to be actually tested on humans, much like medical testing. I wonder who volunteered to try it? The essay sounds horrible, though, and it sounds like Lily wasn't the only one having trouble with it.
James is such a great character! I love your interpretation of him so far; he's a good person and has lots of good qualities, but there's still the obvious teenage boy aspect of his personality (enjoying the attention of being Quidditch captain and so on). He's grown up over summer with looking after Lily, but I think he - and all the others - still have a lot of growing up to do. Who doesn't at that age, though?
The description of Belle and Sirius and thunder and lightning was really effective, and I'll definitely be interested to see what happens between the two of them in the future. I like Belle's character so far, and the interaction between the girls that we got to see here.
The flashback to Lily's childhood was so well written and well placed in this chapter. She's putting on a brave show with this perfect exterior, but there are bound to be times when that cracks like it does here. It was great to get a sense of what her relationship with her mum was like, as well as how happy her childhood seemed to be. I'm glad you included Petunia, too - they always appeared to be close, especially before Lily left for Hogwarts.
Remus and Lily's friendship is so cute, and I love Remus here too (in fact, I love almost all the characters so far). The way he talked about losing part of himself was so sad! One thing I enjoyed was that Lily doesn't actually know about Remus's condition; since he didn't tell his friends until they forced him to admit it, I can't imagine he would tell anyone voluntarily unless he had no other choice. There's still a lot Lily has to learn about the Marauders - the little comment about Sirius having a talent for Transfiguration makes me think that she doesn't know about their ability to transform into animals.
The part with the 'Prospects' was so interesting! Bellatrix was really terrifying. Having heard so much about her I'm looking forward to seeing more of her in this story. I like the idea of the Marauders sneaking around and trying to find out what the Prospects are up to, fighting the war in their own way at this stage. I'm curious as to who they were talking about trying to persuade. Could it be Peter?
Ah, poor Lily! I really felt sorry for her in this chapter, with the potions essay and the memory and then getting drunk at the party. I'm interested in this new Durmstrang student (you've done well writing the accents here too - I always struggle with that!) and how much of a role he'll play in the story. And of course, Lily's starting to become more aware of her feelings for James (and ohmygosh when Remus nearly said that James was in love with her I got so excited!).
I have just one Brit-pick (I hope you don't mind!), in that we have 'terms' instead of semesters over here :)
It feels like this story is really starting to pick up and I'm looking forward to reading the next chapter!
Sian :)Author's Response: I've been itching to get time to respond to your amazing reviews! And writing today has been a challenge, but your review has perked me right up ♥
I do try and give a wizarding flare in this, though I recently remembered that Peeves hardly comes up. I need to give him a bit of face time... though I guess the price I paid for ending up juggling a handful of different storyline at once. Okay, done talking to myself and moving on to the next part of your amazing review.
Okay. Mixing medical with magical is one of my BIGGEST pleasures in this. That and writing class scenes; i constantly have to reel myself back in :P I didn't really think about just how they'd test Wolfsbane before this, either. It couldn't have been easy to find willing werewolves...
I love your statement of who doesn't have growing up to do at this age. That's so true. Showing the way these young people all mature enough to commit themselves into a war is such a huge deal for me and one of my biggest goals for this, so I'm sure excited to see what you think as they continue maturing. Though that Potter humor is never far off, is it? :P
Belle is pretty Mary Sue up until this point. I'm excited to see what you think when we start learning more about her! I am a sucker for thunderstorm comparisons though :P.
ekkk I'm so happy you liked that! I know some people hate flashbacks, but they do crop up every so often in this to sort of tell the story of Petunia and Lily, so you liking them just makes me extra excited.
You enjoying all the characters so far is such an awesome compliment. It was so scary trying to wrap my brain around them, and having other people like my babies just makes me want to squeeze you. Can I?! SQUEEZE.
I completely agree with you about Remus. He didn't tell is own best friends until they turned into animals and followed him into the shack. So he's going to tell her because... ermm.. she's Lily Evans? No. Haha, okay, sorry... rant over.
And nope she doesn't know about that either. poor clueless Lily :P!
Accents. Ugh. If I ever say, "Hey Sian, I'm going to start a story with two characters who are foreign," will you throw something at me? One chapter in the future I make a statement that Isabelle will never talk more than she did in that certain chapter cause I got SO frustrated, haha!
Ah! Thank you! And absolutely not -- if you ever find any thing that is super American please don't hesitate to point it out! My beta and I are both hopelessly American ;).
Thank you so much for another amazing review. And for making me feel a lot better about how frustrated I was getting with writing today because of said review!
♥ Jami Report Review
Out of all the deaths in the last book, I think that Fred's was the one that really got me the most. I couldn't stop crying when I read that part - it's just so heart-breaking and completely devastating that he went through so much and still didn't survive. And if it's like that for us, how awful must it have been for George? I loved the way you wrote about the twins and how terribly hard it must have been for George at the funeral, and I thought this was really poignant and moving.
It's so hard to write in second person, because it can come across as quite awkward at times, but I loved the way you used it here. It just seemed to fit the piece so well; kind of illustrating George's detached perspective on the events but at the same time there was a sense of intimacy that really showed how broken George was by the whole thing.
Actually that's another thing you did really well in this one-shot - portray how much George was suffering but without overdoing it completely. I couldn't imagine the grief that comes with losing a sibling and for a twin, especially those like Fred and George, everything must be so much worse. But you struck the balance well here, with the shifts between melancholy and humour, so at times they were still the Fred and George that we all know and love.
There were so many little details in this that struck me as I read it, too. The way that Lily made Fred 'late' for his own funeral because she was fussing over him reminds me of Molly fussing over Harry; a role-reversal of sorts. Then Fred's tirade (which I can imagine rather well :P) about Muriel's presence at the funeral, and the gaudy decorations that just seem so fitting for Fred. Then there was the discussion of the reactions of the rest of the family, rather like what I imagine them to be, and Fred's message about Angelina towards the end. They were all just briefly mentioned but I think they really helped to make this a brilliant one-shot.
I loved the ending as well! Thank you for giving George some sense of peace at the end of this - I feel like it gave me a sense of peace as well because I knew that George had found some closure. Only Fred would be able to help him be strong in that way at the funeral, and the new eulogy was so fitting for the twins. Your characterisation of them was great throughout, especially in their speech.
I can't believe I haven't read this before, but it was so lovely and moving and I'm so glad I read it!
Sian :) Report Review
Hi Sophie! I was really pleased to see that you'd added another chapter to this story, especially one about Hagrid - I agree with you that he doesn't really get the credit he deserves!
It's really interesting to see all the different approaches you can take to the title of this story, and of course Hagrid fits brilliantly with it. The theme is cute and it can be interpreted in a lot of ways, so I always enjoy seeing how you develop each chapter!
The way that you came full circle in this chapter was really nice. I loved the way that Hagrid went from feeling so enormous and dwarfing Harry to feeling dwarfed by the power and magnitude of what Harry had done. It was really effective. You also added some depth to his character, such as when you mentioned his attempts to use shrinking potions just so that he could be a normal size. It was really cute!
I thought the flashbacks you included were really well chosen, and not too long compared to other parts of the story. I felt very sorry for poor Hagrid during the part when Riddle accused him of letting a monster loose on the school. I liked the fact that you hid Fang's real identity until the end of the flashback, referring to him as the visitor all the way through instead. It was really sweet to see how Hagrid got his best friend and I was really happy for him that he wasn't lonely anymore. Another thing I thought you conveyed well was the way Hagrid cares for all the animals around him.
As usual, I really like the descriptions you used; they aren't too long for these stories, but I can imagine what you describe well.
A few little typos I picked up:
"he said apoligetically, although there was no need to apoligise really." -- apologetically and apologise
"The dog's joules" -- jowls
Other than those small mistakes, this was a really cute story and I enjoyed reading it. I hope another one comes soon!
Sian :)Author's Response: Another review?! You're awesome Sian! Thank you so much! You're reviews honestly make me so happy! And I'm thrilled you like Hagrid too - he is a lovely character!
Yeah - I'm going to go through all the metaphorical types of big, and of course the physical big too! I did try to keep it open, so people could see it from different angles, and I'm pleased you saw that! Awhh you're too nice! I'm sooo pleased I added enough depth to Hagrid because it was a shorter chapter than last time, and I did want him to be cured of feeling so enormous and different all the time. In the books it's never really mentioned, but growing up so big must've been so hard for Hagrid, and I can sympathise with the poor guy!
I wasn't going to include another flashback, but then I realized how Fang had actually been with Hagrid for so long and through so much, it would be impossible to miss out such an awesome loyal dog! I also wanted to illustrate how Fang is just like a human in a way to Hagrid, and he's a nice companion that did make Hagrid cheer up. Yay! I did try to 'paint a picture' really, and I'm so happy I achieved this!
Grr! Typos! It's so handy you picking them up, just because I often miss them, and it's a thing I hope I'll get better at noticing!
Thanks for one of the loveliest reviews I've ever received! I'm buzzing right now, thank you so much Sian! &hearts
Sophie :D Report Review
I think this is review 300 on this story! Yay!
James is such a great protagonist because he's so likeable. Of course, when he did go off the rails I kind of wanted to slap him and tell him to sort his life out, but he's so humble about his talents and abilities and that makes him so nice to read about. I think, realistically, Demelza will have to pick James for the squad again because she knows how good he is and everyone can see that he's matured and improved recently - other players just wouldn't be as good. I like the fact that he was reluctant to say it, though, even though his family are confident of his chances. It'll be interesting to see how this decision affects his feelings towards the teaching position at Hogwarts.
The part when Carla was sifting through all the books in Harry's office was really fun to read. I liked how you incorporated all the canon titles into the story and added your own comments about them. It's strange to think how much Carla still has to learn about the wizarding world and she can do that through reading through some of the books. I could really picture the excitement on her face when she found the baking book - I can imagine her begging James to help her in the kitchen while she makes things!
As ever, I love the interactions between Harry and James. They seem very real, the way you've portrayed them in this story, and they have had problems with their father-son relationship, which is only natural, but I think that makes it more authentic and believable to read. I love the jokes between them and the way that they tease each other about things. I'm pretty sure Harry met a vampire once at Slughorn's party, but that's nothing major.
I'm so interested to see what happens next, and what Demelza's choice actually is!
Sian :)Author's Response: This is indeed review 300! Crazy, crazy stuff! This makes me a very happy author. :)
I had to make James likeable right from the start, just to make sure people wouldn't totally turn against him when he went off the rails. I'll be honest with you, I wanted to slap him at times while I was writing him during that phase, even though I knew he'd come out of it okay! So I'm really, really glad that worked out in the end. :) He's reluctant to say he has a chance of making the squad again because he doesn't want to get his hopes up in case he's NOT picked. Of course he has a chance, but he's not overly confident about that chance and he'd rather prepare for the worst than expect the best. His family have a slightly more objective viewpoint, so they're more likely to talk up his chances. Even if he doesn't want to hear that!
I absolutely loved writing that bit with the books. I forgot that so many of them existed - like Enchantments in Baking, I think that got a fleeting mention in CoS or GoF - it's one of Mrs Weasley's books in the kitchen in the Burrow, unsurprisingly. :) Carlotta will of course nag James to do the spells for her. And if not, Freddie will surely be willing if there's food at the end of it. But yes, those books will teach Carlotta so much more about the wizarding world, things that haven't even crossed James' mind as worthy bits of information.
Once more, Harry and James' dynamic was an utter joy to write. I think Harry would be SO laid-back with life as an adult, and when James isn't an insecure nincompoop he's almost horizontal, so they just bounce off each other now they've sorted out their issues. Which is lovely. :) I had forgotten about that vampire at Slughorn's party - but yes, that wasn't a major moment in Harry's life, so that's my excuse ;) Thanks for review 300! :) Report Review
Well, I'll try...
I really liked the beginning part of this chapter when Dom was talking to her sister and mum, because it's really nice to show that they're still there for her no matter what has happened. Oh, I feel so sorry for her though! It must be a horrible thing to have to go through, but it was the decision I thought she would probably make. She just strikes me as that sort of person who wouldn't hold out hope for a miracle cure, which would probably have been unrealistic anyway.
"It's better if I go through the procedure and get my ability to conceive... removed" this was simply heart-breaking!
I'm actually really pleased that Teddy finally lost his temper with her, because he is human after all, and it might not have been believable if he had managed to stay calm all the way through. I love the fact that his hair colour changes to mirror his mood as well - it's a little detail, but one of those things that really helps to bring the characters to life.
Even though I'm glad he lost his temper with her, I'm even happier that Teddy and Dom made up. It really showed how strong their relationship is. The detective work they did was great as well, because there was enough build up to it and we found out different things gradually rather than everything all at once.
The letter! Oh my goodness, really, that was so good! I'm probably quite dense that I didn't expect it to be Delilah Jones, but I loved the way that he couldn't remember the name and then added it as a postscript at the end. (I'm also very glad that you didn't leave this on another cliff hanger! :P) My mouth is still hanging open from the revelation (not an attractive look, believe me!)
I'm really intrigued now about why her boss felt the need to do that. Of course, it could just be that she's an incredibly ruthless person and would do anything to get a story, including infecting one of her senior journalists with lycanthropy, but at the same time I get the impression that there's more to it than that... So curious!
This was definitely my favourite chapter so far and I'm adding this story to my favourites - I simply can't wait for another review tag just to find out when you've updated!
Sian :)Author's Response: Hey there! Thanks once again for another one of your super duper awesome reviews! I do love them so! Apologies for delay in responding!
*hugs* I am glad you got your coherent thoughts back xD
I am glad you liked the beginning part - I wanted to show some mother/daughters bonding and I am glad I succeeded! Indeed, it is horrible eh. Yes, Dominique is definitely not one for hoping for a miracle cure.
Aw, it was quite heart-breaking for me while writing it too. *shares cookies*
Haha indeed, Teddy is only human, he couldn't possibly have remained calm all the way through with Dom being so silly. He doesn't get angry often but when he does it's bad - though the temper goes as fast as it comes! I love little details like that so I am glad you enjoy them too.
Teddy and Dom have a strong relationship yeah. They cannot bear to think of being apart =) I am glad you liked the detective work and that you enjoyed the build up as well.
Haha I loved writing the letter, am quite proud of it xD No you're not dense at all, a couple of people didn't guess it! I intended to leave it as a cliffhanger but then I thought it'd be all the more exciting if I ended the chapter with her name (thus the post script). Haha I am flattered to get such a strong reaction from you, thanks!
There might be more to it, then there might not be ;) You'll find out soon enough!
I am glad this was your favourite chapter, thank you, and that you're adding it to your favourites! Yay! I'll update by June end!
P.S. I have replied to all your MTA questions. Thanks a ton for them! Report Review
Hello my dear! It took me much longer than I anticipated getting round to reviewing this, but I'm finally back :)
It's hard to know where to start, actually, because there is so much happening in this chapter! So I'll start at the beginning (a very good place to start...)
So I liked how Hermione was the one to find and comfort Tor after she saw Katie being cursed by the necklace. It fits in well with her character, and like you said, although they lead separate lives their worlds do intersect at times. The contrast between Hermione's behaviour towards her and Draco's was really marked for me, and when he threatens to tell Voldy about her talking to a Muggle-born I got so annoyed at him, particularly because she wouldn't have needed Hermione's help in the first place if he hadn't tried to smuggle the necklace into the castle.
The more I see of Draco here the more I wonder how on earth the two are ever going to be married. I actually really hope you do a sequel to this story, because I'd love to read your explanation for how it happened!
Another thing that I liked at the beginning was that you showed Tor's vulnerability. She really is so young and there is so much for her to deal with at her age. She wants to seem grown up before her time, I think, but at moments like these she's reminded that maybe she isn't as strong as she thought she was.
Then the contrast between Draco and Terry was brilliant, too. They seem completely antithetical at this point; whereas Draco chastises and threatens Tor, Terry is the one who calms her and looks after her. They're so sweet together and I really like his character. You've made him a lot more real for me than he ever was in canon because of the depth and the back story you've given him here.
I love the introduction of the name Hyperion! It's quite sweet to think that, even though she goes on to marry Draco Malfoy, there's a part of Tor that still loves Terry and wants to be reminded of him. Although I know that this story isn't going to end with the two of them married, I'm quite apprehensive that Terry might die at the end of this - I know if he does you'll have me crying buckets!
Ah, the kiss. About time, wasn't it? :P So they've finally recognised that they have feelings for each other, beyond the strange sort of friendship they had, which is, undeniably, progress. But then Terry had to let slip to Tor that he's a Muggleborn, confirming all the suspicions that she didn't want to hear. I'm not all that surprised that she ran away from him, with her inherent prejudices about pureblood supremacy, but it still made me sad. I'm interested to see how Terry will react when he finds out that her father is a Death Eater, because he seems pretty firm in his beliefs against them as well. It's going to be a difficult thing for them to overcome if they're going to have any semblance of a relationship.
Goodness, I felt so sorry for Tor at the end of this chapter. While she is prejudiced, it's what she's been taught from the youngest age by the people who mean the most to her, so I can't really blame her for feeling the way she does. I really hope that starts to change in the future, though.
Another fantastic chapter, m'dear!
Sian :)Author's Response: Hola! :)
Can I just let you know how amazing you are for leaving such dedicated, thorough reviews for so many of my stories? Very, very amazing, is how much! :P
Also, I now have Do Ray Me stuck in my head, and am thinking about a Sound of Music/HP crossover. But that could never work... right?
I'm glad you liked Hermione's little cameo, and how their lives intersect just so slightly. It's so fun to integrate the HP characters and events into the story, one of the best things about writing Hogwarts era I think. And yes, Draco is so hypocritical and mean! He does eventually get a bit better, but I wanted to show how awful he was during HBP and avoid the cliche man stud Malfoy of Dramiones as much as possible! :P
Aw, I'm so glad you like Terry! He's actually one of the hardest characters to write for me just because I don't want him to seem too Gary-Sue ish, even though it is through Tor's eyes, who adores him. You're right, there is a big difference between Draco and Terry, and as for what's going to happen well... you'll just have to keep reading and find out! :D If I ever manage to keep updating, that is...
Yes, finally they kissed! :) I'm glad you sympathize with Tor's little freakout, what else could she do after all? I'm glad you're asking these questions and wondering what will happen, it makes me very happy!
Thank you so much for your wonderful review! :D Report Review
You know, I've read surprisingly few stories about Snape on the archives, even though I know there are a lot of them. This story really made me want to read more about him, though, and I even liked him and felt sorry for him at the end (believe me, that's an achievement)!
I actually really liked the format of this one-shot; it would have been very easy to repeat or rework some of the memories that we see in the last book but I liked how you've created new ones here.
One thing you conveyed really well was the complexity of Snape's character. He was always the outsider and it was almost like he never had a chance of winning, especially when we see his parents bullying him just as much as other children. I can understand why he might want the power that he seeks at Voldemort's side because of that, although of course it backfires on him in the end.
I think my favourite part would probably be the memory about the doe that they saw in the forest, because maybe Lily's Patronus wasn't just the female version of James's, but a memory of a shared experience with Snape. I wonder if she ever looked to see what his was?
There were some really lovely descriptions in this piece. I think "Her silky flowing red hair, waterfalls of fire" probably has to be my favourite of them.
Oh goodness, the ending! It's so sweet and lovely, and it kind of sums up what Snape has spent his whole life working towards. Lily was the most important thing to him and even when she was dead he couldn't stop loving her. I think it takes a really deep-rooted love for him to risk everything so that he can protect Lily's son in her memory.
I also loved how you brought the one-shot full circle, so that we could see all Snape's memories in the time it took the tear to fall, and then it became Lily's turn to wipe his tears away, just as he had done for her. The tie-in with the canon version and Harry's green eyes was really effective too.
As far as CC goes, I think Snape would be more likely to call the Marauders by their surnames rather than nicknames or first names. There were a few typos as well but nothing that really affect the story and all easily sorted with another read through.
Really lovely, Sophie! I'm glad I read it!
Sian :)Author's Response: Sian! Hey there! I'm so flattered by all of your comments, and it's so so lovely of you to stop by and give me such an awesome review ;)
I'm pleased you liked the format! I tried hard to structure it that way, and I find it hard to know went to start a new paragraph and stuff. Yay! Snape is such a HUGE character, and interesting to explore, so I'm so amazingly thrilled you think I did that well!
Yeah, I think the whole patronus idea of Rowling is so clever and awesome, so I had to jump at any chance I got to include that in a story :) And, awh thank you, that's so sweet!
Yes - I wanted it to be resolved at the end, and to make it get somewhere - so Snape died sort of happy, and just to honour his memories really. Plus, the 'always' bit...I just HAD to use that quote several times.
Yes, looking back I think so too! I will go back and sort out the typos, as well as the nicknames. I'm so glad you enjoyed it, I must say I cringe when ever I read this one! Thank you ever so much for stopping by - it really has me grinning for the whole day! Thanks!
-Sophie :D Report Review
Oh my goodness, poor Dom! From the title of this story, I really need to learn to expect that nothing will go right for her, but I keep having hope that something will get better. You make her suffer so much!
The Teddy and Dominique interaction at the beginning of this chapter was so sweet. I'm glad that he's still there for her and that he's not going to go away easily, no matter what she does. I thought you really showed how much they love each other at the beginning and how well they know each other; they kind of match their actions to the other's needs. I love the fact that he wanted to try and prepare her for the bad news, and that he was the only one who could get her to listen and agree to talk to her family properly. His anger on her behalf when he found out about what her editor had asked her to do was very believable as well.
And then, after building up such a sweet interaction between the two of them, things have to get even worse for Dom! The contrast between the two works really well because it emphasises how awful the news really is. I feel so sorry for her - it must be completely heart-breaking to hear that she's capable of conceiving children, but she shouldn't because she would be a danger to them. Her own condition could kill her unborn child! That moment when the werewolf bit her has completely changed her life, and any hopes she might have had for the future. It really was a devastating thing to happen.
I thought that it was lovely that her mum and sister wanted to be there for her when she heard the news. You could tell that you'd gone to a lot of effort to research things about pregnancy because the details you included about that made it sound really convincing. I just feel so sorry for her!
One thing I love about this story is the way that you're exploring the physical effects and her emotional turmoil after the werewolf attack. Including both aspects makes this story so much more enjoyable to read.
I'm terrible at guessing what's going to happen next in a story, but I think the decision they want her to make is whether she should have a hysterectomy or not so that she isn't in danger of conceiving a child that she can't carry safely. Whether she'll do it or not, I don't know. If I were her I'd be finding out as much as possible about previous female werewolves and seeing if any of them have been able to have their own children. It's really interesting to see lycanthropy from a female perspective, because while Remus obviously suffered the stigma and pain of his condition, his life wasn't affected so entirely as Dom's seems to be. After all, he could still father children - I wonder if Dom would even be allowed to foster or adopt a child if people know about her condition, as they might think it puts the child at more risk.
I'm looking forward to getting the chance to come back and read the next chapter, but I want you to know that I'm really enjoying this story!
Sian :)Author's Response: Hey! Thanks a lot for reading and reviewing! Your reviews are always so massive and awesome, they make me so happy! Thank you. Sorry for the delay in responding though!
Ah yes I am an evil author, I make Dom suffer a lot, the poor thing. *evil laugh* xP
I am pleased you liked the Teddy/Dom interaction. They do love each other a lot and want the best for each other. Where Dom is impulsive and rash, Teddy is calm and controlled =) I am glad you liked the way things played out between them, and that Teddy's anger on Dom's behalf was believable.
Yeah, it is quite awful isn't it? *sigh* I felt quite sorry for her while writing it too, but in the end, I want to show all the bad things she has to go through and this is one of the important ones.
Of course, her mum and sister love her as much as Teddy does, maybe even more - they're family after all - so they have to be there for her. I did do a lot of research, haha. I am pleased it paid off and it was believable.
Ah I really wanted to delve into both the physical and emotional aspects when the plot bunny first hit me because I felt it would be incomplete and somewhat unrealistic if I explored only one. Glad you think the same way and enjoy it!
Indeed, that is the decision as you found out in the next chapter. It's called a 'magical fix' but yeah it is equivalent to hysterectomy xP I think, as I've emphasised in the story couple times before, Dom is more of an impulsive person so she may not do that much research before making her decision. She'll try to explore other options in the future though - if the story goes that far haha. I am happy that you find this whole female perspective interesting. Remus could obviously father children, and Dom can conceive too, it's just that her body may not be able to carry the baby through, or the wolf transformation every month would be too much for the child in the womb. The fostering and adoption thing is something I haven't looked into entirely yet because it's not really needed but it might be looked into in the future yeah.
I am glad you are enjoying the story. I sure am enjoying your reviews. Thanks a ton!
Hi darling! You know how excited I was that you'd put this into the queue, and when you mentioned it was validated, I came over to read this straight away.
Well, it shouldn't really surprise you that I love this, since I love almost everything you write. The title is a brilliant choice, since there are so many different things that a magpie can symbolise. Already in this chapter I can see how one aspect ties in with Verity, as a collector of stories. I was actually thinking the other day how good the magpie poem would be to tie into a story, so it was brilliant to see it here. I wonder if the sight of different amounts of magpies will continue throughout the story and tie in with the poem?
Characterisation here was brilliant. Because of the events in this chapter I feel we maybe get to know more about Penny than Verity, simply because she is the main focus of Verity's thoughts here. I really like the fact that she's a strong, moral character because we see so little of her in the books, and as Percy's girlfriend there it's easy to think of her as a someone with a similar personality. I can see from this chapter that she wasn't the same, and to me it's completely understandable that Verity misses her so much, because she was obviously an important person and big influence on her life.
I'm not sure if I like Sebastian here, but I'm going to reserve judgement for the next few chapters. I can see some of the reasons he and Verity got together but it's equally obvious that they've grown apart since they left Hogwarts and that they want very different things in life. Sebastian doesn't really seem to understand the way Verity's feeling in this chapter, especially when he seems more concerned about people staring at her at the funeral, and essentially blames Penny for making herself into a target. It clearly wasn't what Verity needed at that point, but he doesn't understand that.
I love Verity's character here too. Although the main focus of her thoughts is really Penny, we still learn things about her personality and background. I think the grief of losing her best friend seems to have made her more introspective; the way she lists details about herself suggest that she's trying to reaffirm facts she already knows, to prove that she is real and to stop her from losing herself. There are so many interesting elements to her character - one that particularly interests me is the way she collects stories. I'd love to know more about why she does it and what she does with them.
I think you explore her grief very well. Naturally there's a lot more to come and it will last for much more than this one chapter, but the guilt, anger and denial are all here. The shock of losing her best friend at such a young age must compound the anguish she's feeling as well, because it was so unexpected and much harder to deal with because of that.
Another aspect I enjoyed in this was the inclusion of people such as McGonagall and Dumbledore at the funeral, because that sort of thing always makes stories seem more authentic and believable to me. I also liked the fact that for the majority of the people the war is still not real. It fits with what we know of canon and makes me wonder how differently people would have behaved during that year if they had believed Harry and Dumbledore. Does Verity have more of an idea about what is coming because of the shop she works in? It's really interesting to think about!
As for CC, there was just one typo I noticed in this chapter:
"I took the day of work" -- off
I'm not sure it's necessary to include the location of each new scene, since it's mentioned within the body of the story already. I also noticed one slight inconsistency with dates; at the beginning you tell us that it's March 1996 but go on to say "It is spring, London, 1997." which confused me a little.
I enjoyed this so much, and I'm looking forward to reading the next chapter when it's up!
Sian :)Author's Response: Hello! :) Thank you so much for reading and reviewing this story and giving Verity some love, it really means so much to me and was so wonderful to read! :D
I'm glad you like the title, and yes, I love the idea of the magpie as a symbol and a plot device! :) I'm so glad you like the idea of the nursery rhyme, and magpies and Verity as collectors. It just came to me as something that might fit, and I ended up with a significant title! :D
I'm glad you liked both Verity and Penelope, and how Verity is so upset about suddenly losing her friend and what Penny meant to her. She's certainly very different from Percy, and we'll be learning a lot more about all those characters in coming chapters! :)
I'm glad you're giving Sebastian a chance, especially as we're mostly seeing him through Verity's eyes. A lot of relationships are ideal and perfect, and I really want to show a relationship that has gone on for a long time and started to degrade here as both of them have changed without admitting it!
I'm glad you liked the inclusion of the professors, as I felt like they would be helpful to ground the story to Hogwarts as much as possible. And yes, I like writing the innocent disbelief of people who don't necessarily believe Dumbledore and Harry! It's really fun to write outside of the Hogwarts sphere and wonder what it was like to live in the general wizarding world.
Thank you for this really lovely review, my dear! :) I absolutely loved reading it, you are the best! :D Report Review
Hi Jami! Sorry that it's taken me so long to get back to this story, but this is the first moment I've had to leave a review!
You know, it's so long since I read a James/Lily story and I'm really excited about this one. It's so easy to use cliches in a story like this one and I can already tell that you're not going to go along with them all, and that makes me so happy!
One of the first things I noticed was the way that you've mentioned is the 'darkness' that is beginning to become more prevalent in their world. It's like Voldemort isn't real to them at this point, more of an evil presence they're aware of than a proper enemy. James seems to be more understanding of the danger than Lily, but I'm guessing that her parents have been victims of Voldemort, and so when she finds that out her opinions may change.
Goodness, Lily! I love your characterisation of her in this chapter. She's experienced such a tragedy and it's completely believable that she's still suffering from it. Her heart did a little leap in her chest! But of course she's trying to ignore it, because she feels incredibly guilty at enjoying anything when she thinks she should still be grieving, so she's going to deny any semblance of romantic feelings towards James. Of course, I'm sure her parents would want her to try and move on and enjoy her life, but that's much easier said than done. It does seem like she's making some progress, though, because at least she's feeling something, rather than being completely numb.
I'm so pleased that there was an actual reason for James and Lily becoming Head Boy and Girl, especially since James wasn't a prefect beforehand.
The shared dorms...I've surprised myself by actually liking them here. I know that in a lot of private schools the Heads do have their own separate dorms but they're used all too often for "anything inappropriate occurring in the room of the opposite sex" (love that line by the way!). But you've included some things that make me fairly sure you're not going to go along those lines, so I like them. I'm quite jealous of them, actually...I could definitely do with a wardrobe that folded my clothes up for me! The idea of giving a secret to obtain entry to the dorm is really interesting. We get to know some little things about the pair of them (and presumably, they get to learn more about each other) but I have the feeling that there's also another reason behind it, and I'm intrigued to see what that is.
The argument made me a bit sad, but I imagine these two are going to be arguing in the future as well. It was very believable, though, and after all 'the course of true love never did run smooth'. And the revelation Lily had about her parents was so sweet and touching!
It was great how James ran to his friends as soon as he'd argued with Lily, because I always think that his friendship with the Marauders is one of the most important parts of who he is. I liked the fact that they didn't agree with him straight away, and Remus sounded exactly like him.
Also, thank you so much for Peter and Sirius! I love the fact that Sirius isn't a womaniser here because that happens in so many stories, and Peter actually says things that the others don't laugh at him for! I want to give you a hug for that right now!
But they made up in the end. It was really cute that they agreed to be friends again at the end of this chapter. Obviously, they've both got a long way to go and a lot of growing up, changing and realising to do, but it's a start!
I'll be back soon (and it won't be as long as last time, I promise) to read on!
Sian :)Author's Response: Oh my gosh look at this review! Okay, it's getting copied into its own document so I can answer it properly :)
There we go!
And pleased don't feel bad if it ever takes a while! And seriously DO NOT feel compelled to review each chapter! I won't be sad at all if you just want to go ahead and read won't reviewing each one.
I will admit there are a few cliches, but only in these first four chapters ;). I do try and make them realistic though, so hopefully that helps.
I won't tell you just what happened on he car accident night, cause there is still a lot of secrets about that, but I can tell you that Voldemort doesn't actually tie into it. I thought about that, but it felt too easy.
And yes! I'm so happy you mentioned that about it all not really seeming real to them yet. That's absolutely what I wanted to give the impression of. We do start seeing a few things from the DE's perspective in chapter 5, so I hope you like that!!!
Keeping a realistic balance between all the pain she went through and making it clear that she does *have* to move on was something I really worked on and still worry about, so I'm really happy that it feels realistic to you ♥
Yes, I pinky promise, the Heads' Quarters are not there as an easy way to get James and Lily together. They sort of become like a club house for the gang, but then play a really important part not romance related at the end :P. Thank you for giving them a chance. I know it's not easy too after all the cliches polluting L&J!
I think Lily was absolutely a bit more sensitive at the start of this, making her a little more defensive. I've never been a fan of the hate to love sort of thing people sometimes do, so we actually sort of see them as good friends before we take the next step. And I'm really excited that you liked James running to his friends! He's such a little boy :P!!
I really agree, btw, about his friendship with the boys being one of the most important part of who he is.
Womaniser Sirius drives me crazy. He can be attractive and a flirt without being a playboy. I'm a flirt, and I'm not a playgirl! :P I also think Sirius has a lot more respect for people than to just use them. And Peter! I actually really like Peter. I've twisted and turned and built a head canon and circumstances around what Peter does to sort of get myself to accept it. Obviously those details won't come out for sometime, but I ended up with something I can accept and a Peter I really enjoy. So that's good, right?! Sorry about that tangent.. my brain is a little crazy this morning :P
I'm so happy you liked this chapter, and I can't even tell you how much it means that you're getting involved in such a long story! I know I've mentioned that before, but I'm probably going to keep saying it :P. Thank you Sian for another truly awesome review ♥
Hello! Here for the Gryffie review tag.
I'm actually really pleased I got a chance to come back and read the second part of this story, because I really like your writing style and the way that these stories focus on one short moment but explore much more than that.
This is a really different interpretation of Draco's character - I certainly haven't seen it before. I like the idea that most of his resentment of Harry comes from the fact that he feels constantly overshadowed by him rather than looking down on him, which is the impression that we always get in the books. I actually really like this idea, because I find it very believable. There is always constant pressure on Draco, especially from his family, to uphold the pureblood values and do his best because it reflects on the family name; being constantly eclipsed by Harry can't have been easy for him.
I also liked the fact that Draco felt humiliated and maybe even a little resentful towards Harry for saving him. I thought that was really great characterisation.
Another aspect of his characterisation I enjoyed was the way that Draco was scared and regretful, but that he couldn't deny the fact that at one point the had wanted to be part of the Death Eaters. I think the lure of the glory that his family promised him would come with signing up would have meant Draco wanted to join, but he realised his mistake and regretted the decision since then.
The ending was another element I really enjoyed. I got the impression that the resolution was the sort of grand promise people make to themselves, but never actually manage to keep. Still, it's nice to think that he realised what he'd done and did want to change and make the future better.
The only CC I'd have is that it does seem that Draco gets off a little too easily. Even with Harry's testimony, I find it a little hard to believe that there was no punishment at all, especially since the majority of the Wizengamot wouldn't have been privy to the sort of information that Kingsley probably had. Perhaps Draco could receive a minor punishment or Harry could go into more detail about things Draco had done to go against Voldemort?
I really enjoyed this instalment, and I hope I get a chance to come back and read the third soon!
Sian :) Report Review
The dragon pox?! Does this mean what I think it does? Does James have a chance of getting back on the England team now that Joshua Wadcock has the dragon pox? Okay, that has made me quite confused, because the last chapter made me think something completely different was going to happen...
The school dance was so cute, and I really enjoyed reading this chapter. James and Lily have a really cute brother/sister relationship and it's nice to see them spending time together. And it was so sweet that Lily saved the last dance for her older brother, when he was worried he wouldn't get a chance to dance with her!
Lily is such a brilliant character. The hand she's been dealt is really horrible (it can't be easy as a Squib growing up with all the other Weasleys) but it's great to see that she's made the best of her situation and is thriving with her friends. She's so modest as well - definitely the sort of person I'd want to be friends with, especially since I wouldn't want to get on the wrong side of her!
The awards made me laugh a lot. It reminds me of the same sorts of awards we got when I left school, although our accessories were nowhere near as funny as the ones that the girls got here. Maddie with her snorkel!
And Leggy Allegra came back! I actually really liked her when she was in this story before, because she did seem different to most of the other girls that James seemed to attract. She's definitely not someone that fits into the bimbo category, anyway. I love the fact that you add some depth to minor characters, and that we found out more about her and her background and thoughts. Hopefully it helped James to realise that not everyone has always been after him because of his father's fame or his own. I hope Allegra appears in this story again, because I can imagine her being a good friend, and even getting on with Carlotta.
That ending - it's not exactly a cliff hanger, but you've left me so curious about what's going to happen next and how events are going to unfold now!
Sian :)Author's Response: I loved writing the school dance. It wasn't necessarily important to the plot, but it was nice to give James and Lily some sibling time. And of course she saved her last dance for him. :) My own school prom had those kinds of awards and tongue-in-cheek presents - and actually, the 'most vain' moment was completely lifted from my own prom, right down to the winner refusing to get up to collect her prize. But yes, Maddie and her snorkel made me laugh a little as I wrote it. :)
Allegra is indeed back! I'm glad you like her, because she'll be more important in the sequel (so yes, she will be appearing again! I'm not sure how much she'll feature in the rest of this fic though, but she's VERY important in the next one so hopefully that makes up for it). She's a genuinely nice person who tells James something that he really needs to hear.
DRAGON POX. James' future really is up in the air right now, isn't it? Tee hee. Thanks for reviewing! Report Review
I'm sorry it's taken me so long to get round to reviewing these chapters, but this is the first real opportunity I've had! There's so much interesting stuff in this chapter...
I love the detail and thought you put into each chapter of this story. Everything is made so much more believable and interesting with the effort you obviously put into writing this. Even little things like the basic magical theory behind the existence of Diagon Alley are really interesting, because they offer answers to questions that HP readers have probably had at some point.
Another aspect I love of this story is the way you're sort of reintroducing us all to the world of magic. I think it's so easy for us to forget how wonderful the things that all the characters can do are, because we get so immersed in reading the world that it seems normal to us. Carla kind of helps to show that all of this is really amazing. I can't imagine James possibly trying to describe The Burrow to her, and how astounded she must have been when she saw all the magical things there.
The scenes with all the Weasleys are some of my favourite scenes in this story. They're just so fun to read and I love how close they are as a family and the way that they all interact; each of them has their own definite character that they seem to remain true to throughout. The increased understanding between James and Harry is great as well - it really shows how well parents know their children, even if the children don't think they do.
So, James enjoys teaching kids and inspiring them to become Quidditch players? Hmm, that's interesting. Is he going to take the post at Hogwarts, I wonder? But then he wouldn't be able to play for the Falcons - is there a way he could be a part time teacher and play Quidditch professionally?
Sian :)Author's Response: This chapter was a fun one to write, if I remember rightly. I've actually found that having a Muggle character has forced me to think about the magical world from a more non-magical point of view, if that makes sense ... we're all so used to the world of Harry Potter now that we don't think twice about it, but now I'm thinking about things from Carlotta's stance I'm having to think of the basic magical stuff like how Diagon Alley fits, and how crazy the Burrow actually is. It's fun. :)
I struggled at first with developing all of the Weasley cousins. I've always known how I envisage them all, and that's obviously how I portray them here, but there are so many of them that it's hard to demonstrate each individual character without cramming the story full of them! But the scenes with all of them present are really fun to write, because I love every one of them. Even if I do have to make a list of every person in the room to make sure I don't forget someone.
I'm making absolutely no comment on James' future I'm afraid, you'll just have to see how things pan out! :) Thanks for reviewing! Report Review
Well, this review is a lot later than I meant it to be, but life kept getting in the way.
I love your characterisation of James in this chapter, and just generally in both these stories. He's so real and believable because he's got all of these problems and vulnerabilities which make him relatable as a character. His inner monologue is absolutely hilarious, too. Poor old James - he doesn't deal well with awkward situations, does he?
Another thing I think you show really well is the way that James has matured and grown up over the course of the story. I know he noticed it himself here, in the way that his reaction to Avery was different to what it had been in Italy, but it's noticeable in the way he thinks about things. He's so likeable as well, especially with this determination to set up the charity fund. It's really sweet of him to do something like that.
The way James and Avery behave together is always so believable as well, whether they're fighting or best friends. I can really see how suited they are to each other. I'm just so pleased that Avery knows about the new code now, because the uncertainty beforehand must have been driving her mad. I'm a bit worried about what Mason might do now that he's found James' weak spot, though...
The Potters are brilliant! I love the idea that the whole family bet on when James and Avery were going to get together. It definitely seems like something they'd do!
I don't know if it was intentional, but the way that James left money under the seats in the cinema reminded me of Hermione leaving money for the eggs in the Deathly Hallows. I like seeing different influences on his character from members of his family.
Aw, I felt so sorry for James seeing Freddie and Amy! He just can't deal with that sort of thing very well - it's really cute and very funny. I love how Avery dealt with it in a much calmer manner than him and was able to laugh about it - it's like the two of them balance each other out.
As for Bink, I'm really hoping that he got a place with the Falcons and that he's doing something to do with them! Although, there's not something in the code that prevents you from living with someone from another team, is there...?
Yet another great chapter, and I'll look forward to the next update!
Sian :) Report Review
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