22 Reviews Found

Review #1, by someone___1 

14th November 2012:
Every time I ask a question, the next chapter answers it lol! But oh my gosh. It was just so freaking sad to read Merope's pregnancy time... It was just dark and sad. I'm sure that's what you were aiming for, so congrats :)

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Review #2, by Harry_Potter_Mom 

8th March 2009:
What do I say? It's such a beautifully, devastating chapter. He's searching for her... his thread of happiness, and he is hers - yet they are left - always searching. The locket continued to be creepy - and Salazar's spirit - shiver!

I wonder if he ever knew - about the baby... probably not, but if he had, then what? And Bethe... will you tell her story too? I feel like a child begging for another tale.

This is an amazing story and I am so glad I've been able to see it unfold. Please forgive me for being so incredibly late in reviewing - it was completely unintentional - you know how RL can take hold and run away... but it's nice to have this little corner of the world to hide in from time to time. HUGS to you for another fantastic chapter!


Author's Response: Thank you Teresa! Your compliments mean so, so much, I really don't deserve them. It means so much that you enjoy my story! :)

In this story, at least, Tom never knew about the baby. I think this part might be slightly AU because wasn't it Dumbledore who suggested that Tom left his pregnant wife? There was an implication that he knew Merope was pregnant when he jumped ship, because he had discovered that she was a witch. I decided to ignore that hint because in the interest of this story, I really don't think it would have fit with his character. Tom Riddle Senior in my story isn't that kind of man, simply put, and he would never abandon his pregnant wife however angry he was. He's hot-tempered, but I don't think - even as he was walking out that door - that he ever seriously considered abandoning her forever. Guilt turned him back eventually.

Don't worry at all! Thanks so much for coming back to review and leaving me all of the feedback that was lost in the crash. I appreciate it so much :)

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Review #3, by rosie_sirius93 

22nd January 2009:
yay, I knew it was Ralph. Kinda scary though, because I thought he was alright, guess he was doing it for his mother. anyway, Tom went looking for her?! That is the sweetest thing ever, but its so sad as well because he didn't find her, than the bit when she was turned away from Bethe's house was worse.

And the locket...! So didn't see that coming at all, Salazar Slytherin, very clever again! So manipulative! Was it the 'man' that nursed her back to health when she was sick in Ireland?? And that being the reason that she gave the locket away for such a low price is so clever!!

I thought the end was so sad, how she died after giving birth. I mean I knew it was coming, but you wrote it so well I was so sad!


Author's Response: You were right, it was Ralph who killed Marvolo!

Tom did go looking for her. I left it sort of ambiguous so that you could decide for yourself whether he had really loved her or whether it was just the after-effects of the potion ... but either way, he went looking for her just as Bethe suggested and unfortunately never found her again.

The locket is indeed carrying Slytherin's soul and yes, that was him nursing her back to health. I thought it was interesting how Merope was in such a hurry to sell this locket for a low price in Half-Blood Prince and I wanted to add another layer onto it. Besides being hungry and desperate, what if it had been torturing her?

Thanks so much for your review! :)

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Review #4, by Ria_Lee 

18th December 2008:
I'm really sorry about not reviewing until now. So I did a long one for me, to make up for it, hopefully. :)

Oh, that's so sad. I can't believe Merope's dead... I knew it was going to happen but it's still a surprise. I loved her personality, you made her a really believable character and her feelings about Tom and the Love Potion were so realistic.

This chapter was brilliant, I love your writing style. Some of your descriptions are amazing, and the dialogue is excellent. It's the perfect end (apart from the epilogue) to the story.

Author's Response: No problem, Ria! Thanks for coming to leave a review :) I know what you mean ... I knew exactly what would happen in Merope's story and I was so reluctant to write the end, because I had promised to stick to canon. So glad you thought she was a believable character; it was a challenge to make this minor character my own but it was so incredibly fun and rewarding. Thanks again!!

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Review #5, by Unwritten Curse 

16th December 2008:
I forgot to make mention in my last review that I'm really glad you switched over to Tom's POV. It was a nice touch, and brought your story to another level (which I didn't know was possible, haha). Oh, and I love these lines: 'Poor men could not afford to dream, and rich men were not allowed. Wealth had many privileges, but freedom - true freedom - was not one of them.' So true, and so wonderfully worded.

I was right! It was Ralph! And that was quite a letter he sent her. Life in Azkaban? Yes, that's understandable, of course. It's depressing, though. Your story is filled with gray areas, and that makes it so... I don't know, perfect? Haha. It's truly great.

Go Tom! *waves banner* I'm so proud of him. It's too bad he didn't make it in time...

Whoa, okay so I had a suspicion that the locket was the man who had nursed her to health in Ireland, but I wasn't expecting this! This chapter is full of surprises! Its - or his - intentions weren't to help her, but to ensure that she produced a child who would carry on the bloodline. That makes sense! Wow. I love it!

Oh no. Ah, I was expecting this, yet I'm sad to see it come to pass. Poor Merope. She never got to see Tom one last time. I love this line, though: 'Would he ever love only to realize that it was all an illusion?' It's perfect in this situation, because we all know that Tom Riddle grows into a man - if you could call it that - who does not believe in love. He laughs at it. It actually makes sense why he does. It might have been a side effect of all the potions. So many theories are running through my head at the moment.

It has been such a pleasure reading this story. I'm sad that I'm about to read the epilogue and it will finally be over. ]: Oh, well. 10/10, and here I go...

Author's Response: Oh I'm so glad you liked Tom's POV! Before writing this story, I had never read anything about Tom Riddle Senior, let alone anything written from his perspective. I thought it would be extremely interesting since after all, he is the person who goes under the potion's influence. I just thought it would be cool to see the effects of it and the recovery from his point of view - administering it would be from Merope's POV, but its effects would be best described from Tom's eyes.

Yes ma'am, Ralph got put into Azkaban! Poor guy. But he did murder someone, however justified he was in doing it. It's not like he wasn't doing the world a favor or anything - Marvolo was a horrible, cruel man - but the law intervened.

The locket is indeed the man who nursed Merope in Ireland. The man is a kind of extension of its spirit and it can send him forth in a ghostly form when it needs to accomplish things that it can't do as a locket. I was so excited to include Salazar Slytherin in this story, being the man who started it all, and I thought having a piece of his soul captured inside the locket - WAY before little Tom thought of the idea of a Horcrux - would be so interesting.

Yes! That's exactly what I wanted to say - his parents' false love, though he does not know about it, is passed down to Tom Riddle Junior. He looks down on love and he refuses to understand it. Love is a simple concept ... even as Voldemort, he had things that he loved - power, other people's fear, etc. But he looked down on loving other humans. He had no capacity to love other people and that's even more depressing than his father's fake love for his mother.

It's been a pleasure reading your reviews :) I'm sad that I won't get many more from you on this story! I've loved reading them so much! :) :)

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Review #6, by Potterholic 

2nd December 2008:
That was amazing! I love how Tom sought her out relentlessly. It made me wonder how things would turn out so differently with Voldemort if he had known about that. And I feel sorry for Ralph, but I like the message that it had: revenge gets you nowhere. Your explanation about why she let go of the locket so willingly was wonderful too! I would like to say so much more, but I'm still in awe. Great, great job!! *huggles*

Author's Response: I agree, I wonder what Voldemort would have thought about his parents' relationship. Somehow I don't think that his knowing about it would change a thing - either way, he is still an abandoned child, he's still alone and suffering from his delusions of grandeur, he's still struggling to be independent in a world where he just doesn't seem to fit. I think he would have turned out the same.

Thanks so much for your review, I'm glad you liked the explanation behind the locket!

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Review #7, by Tor Petty 

4th November 2008:
Good Afternoon! It's me again, hopefully - if I have time - to finish reading this amazing story!

"Poor men could not afford to dream, and rich men were not allowed." Wow, that's extremely true. I never even realized!

OH MY GOODNESS. The selling of the locket and the birthing of Tom Jr. was extremely chilling!

Wonderful, m'dear! 10/10

Author's Response: Hi Tor! :) Thanks for coming back to review :D I'm so happy that you liked this chapter. Writing Tom Sr. has been a lot of fun - he's pretty much become my character since I had almost nothing from canon (regarding personality, family, etc.) to go by. I like to think that he was trapped as much as Merope was - both in real life and by the potion. And I'm glad you liked those two canon parts - the locket being sold to B&B and the birth of Voldy! Thanks hun!

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Review #8, by sazel_c 

27th October 2008:
Aw! I was so sure for a few there that you were going to change it and have him come back. But you kept in cannon, which is good! One more chapter, I really loved this story!

Author's Response: Haha no, I knew I would keep it canon from the very beginning. I really don't like AU - what happens in the books is what happens. Thanks for your review, I'm so glad you like this!!

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Review #9, by onestop_hpfan18 

26th October 2008:
Excellent chapter. The transitions as months passed were smooth and well written. I thought you did a great job of writing Tom's feelings and how he started thinking if he could have fallen in love with Merope eventually without the potion like he had started to like and care about her as a friend. And then him finding the cottage empty and insisting on finding her, only to discover that she had completely vanished out of his life forever.

Also, I thought you did an excellent job with writing what Merope was going through and how she felt about where her life had fallen into despair and depression. And when she discovered who the locket had belonged to and reacted by secretly plotting a way of getting rid of it and then the locket's reaction when she was taking to Mr. Burkes about how much it cost to see how much she could sell it for, and also to get rid of it.

I really felt bad for Merope, especially toward the end when she was giving birth to her son, Tom Marvolo Riddle, in the orphanage. Great job and I'll read&review chapter 17 the next chance I get, perhaps tonight when I get home from work. 10/10

Author's Response: I'm happy that you liked Tom's feelings - I really enjoyed writing from his point of view in this story. It was a great challenge and a lot of fun to imagine what kind of effects the potion might have had on him, both in the short term and long term. His marriage to Merope was under false circumstances but they really were happy, and this is what he's beginning to realize.

Merope's downward spiral was plummeting in this chapter! Things were definitely not going her way, but it was the right thing to do to get rid of the locket.

Thanks for another great review, dear :) I'm so glad you liked this chapter!

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Review #10, by savagebeginnings 

25th October 2008:
Hi again! I absolutely loved this chapter! The imagery was so amazing! I don't know why, but I love reading angsty situations. There's just something about them that appeals to me. That's one reason why I like reading Holocaust stories. They're just so terribly interesting. Anyways, I just thought it was fascinating all the stuff that Merope went through after Tom left. She lived such a sad life and while she did bring it on herself in a way, I felt so bad because she could have easily gone back to her wonderful fantasy. Everyone was willing to take her back with out question, but there was always that 'wrong place, wrong time' situation. It was just heart-wrenching. I feel so bad for her! Overall, this was another one of my favorite chapters in this! It just perfect because in my mind, you saved the best for the last!

Author's Response: I'm with you all the way! I LOVE angst, most of my stories are very angsty. :) It's a lot more interesting when there is conflict, because real life is not all peaches and rainbows and unicorns. We like to see things that we can relate to in stories that we read. That is the perfect way to describe this - "Wrong place, wrong time" all the time for poor Merope. She missed every chance to be happy, every chance to be rescued from her destiny ... but fate is there and it's been pushing her towards this inevitable end from the beginning.

Thanks so much for your review!

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Review #11, by chiQs09 

23rd October 2008:
Aww... this was... indescribable. This was by far my favoritest favorite chapter! I love it.
What a bummer! Tom had been looking for her but she went away from the cottage. Was it pride that she didn't take the money with her? Or didn't she see the envelop? (That was in the previous chapter...)
I could really imagine her half dying in the cold, pregnant and starving after being thrown out of the building she rented a room. Poor thing... finally she sold the locket. I wish she did that sooner, so it didn't have the chance to manipulate her.
The childbirth scene was excellent. Luckily you didn't write "Hee hee who who hee hee"... LOL Just kidding... your piece was far better than that!!! Gods, it was excellent! I could picture the pain she had... it was so realistic. *amazed*
10/10 Great chapter!!!

Author's Response: Aw, thanks babe! :)

Merope did see the envelope, but honestly she thought that Tom would never come back again. She had kind of closed off her heart now that she had spoken the truth, and she thought that they had gone their separate ways forever. Never did she imagine that Tom would return to find her, because the locket convinced her that the potion was the only thing that had held them together.

Yes, she finally sold the locket after she discovered what it really was and what it had been doing to her!

HAHAHAHAHA! I'm glad I didn't write the "hee hee who who" part either ... I was freaking out because I didn't want to seem ignorant, but I had no clue what a woman goes through when she's pregnant. I just hear horror stories from my mom and aunts, so I Googled it to see for myself!

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Review #12, by Bella_Portia 

22nd October 2008:
Let me say, first of all, that the childbirth scene with which this chapter concluded was stunningly authentic. I cannot adequately say how powerful it was, or how "right" it felt. I was right there with Merope down to the language you used to describe her contractions and -- if I may be so graphic -- that point when you feel you have to push. I thought to myself, that you described how it feels, exactly. Man, that was awesome writing!

Moving back: as I read the first section about Tom searching high and low for Merope, I thought -- this is what I hate about canon fanfic. Because I certainly had that passing wish for a happy ending, that he'd find Merope and they'd live happily ever after, after all. But, of course, the canon story would not allow it. However, my point is that I really was drawn into Tom's story.

However, the core of the chapter was Merope. The scenes of Merope lost in London, desperate and on the street, were heartbreaking. What was she going to do when her few assets were exhausted?

To be used and then cast aside by a ghost inhabiting a piece of jewelry! Poor Merope. And, really, Salazar, why do you have to be such a creep? You deserved to be sold, cheap, to Borgin and Burke's. You're just lucky Ebay hadn't been invented yet.

The description of Merope's death, of her seeming to be disembodied and floating, and then of her floating self not returning to her body and floating away into the night -- fantastic! And the final description of little Tommy R reaching out to the stars was just wonderful.

This was a magnificent chapter.

Author's Response: *sigh of relief* I'm so glad that childbirth scene was realistic to you! I did a boatload of research about pregnancy and labor to write this scene. I was so nervous after the conversation we'd all had at eHPF regarding HPFFers' perception of birth and I wanted to be as realistic as possible, but of course childbirth is something you will never know until you actually go through it. I knew the mechanics of it, since I actually wanted to be a doctor at one point (that didn't work out LOL since I don't like blood) but I wanted to get the details just right.

So glad you got drawn into Tom's story. I also was very tempted to violate canon and just give them a happy ending, but I'm way too OCD to do that - so I came as close as I could. :)

Poor Merope ... she has no one and nothing left; even the locket has abandoned her in some ways. Yes Salazar is lucky that he wasn't put up for auction on Ebay, although I'm not sure I would feel safe having him on the Internet within grasp of anybody ... but if you melt him down and make him into a spoon, the spoon would be possessed too. Maybe just throw him into a volcano and have done with it...

So glad you liked this chapter Bella! I'm a huge fan girl of yours and to hear (read?) your praise is incredible!

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Review #13, by JLHufflepuff 

20th October 2008:
So Tom is coming back to Merope. It's so ironic. In some ways, I view this as a drug addict frantically searching for the high his next fix will bring him, but at the same time, this also recalls the chapters where he was showing Merope some attention without the effects of the potion. Would he have really fallen in love with her without it given the right time and cirumstances? Perhaps in another world? This is another place that the theme of conterfeit love comes out. Tom is willing to settle for a love he knows isn't real simply because he loves how it makes HIM feel.

I like that Merope knows she has a true friend in Bethe. It makes perfect sense that she would feel sad about having a constant reminder of Tom around her. It's so moving to me that Tom continues to search for her. It's awful that she was turned away from Bethe's house... In both these cases, it's like she's just missing aid and love that could be hers.

So the locket holds Salazar Slytherin's soul/essence/whatever?!?! Jigga-what! That definitely makes sense. It's like the idea of evolution crossed with a special Sight. He knew what perfect conditions were needed to ensure that a great descendant of his was born. This is sooo creepy and almost even demonic! So chilling, indeed. I wonder if this has ANY bearing whatsoever on your up and coming founders story. This also is a great explanation for why she sold something so valuable - her own ignorance. It really peeves me the way Burkes basically stole it from her with the price he offered.

I am seriously crying here at the last portion of the story. Merope has been thoroughly used and left for nothing by the locket/Slytherin. :( The way she longs for Tom and the way you portray the somber night of her death is so stark and moving.

I've said it a million times, but I mean it every time. You are an amazing writer with incredible talent. You have made the briefly outlined story of Tom, Merope, and Tom Jr. your own with so many amazing twists and turns. I'm sad to read the next chapter. I procrastinated reading this one because I didn't want it to end...

Seriously, this is WONDERFUL!

Author's Response: Jessi! Thanks for this awesome review :D I was so excited to write this chapter, basically because it is THE scene everyone seems to think about/write about when it comes to Merope: the birth of Voldemort. I was telling Megan in my response to her review that I was super nervous too, because of that conversation we'd all had at eHPF about childbirth scenes ... I researched like a madwoman, since I've never given birth and I didn't want to sound completely ignorant. :D

HAHA! Yes the locket holds Slytherin's spirit. He was pimping Merope out so he could create his ultimate minion. Creeptacular! And then when Merope found out about this, she freaked out and sold it very quickly. I know, Burkes totally ripped her off (by the way, is it Burke or Burkes? I was never sure if the store was Borgin and Burkes, or Borgin and Burke's ... oh well) but you know, the dude is in Diagon Alley and all the bad guys hang out there, I'm sure they would rip their grandmother off for a couple Sickles she needs for her arthritis potion.

I'm sooo glad you liked this ending! Your opinion matters a LOT to me so it's just amazing to hear that you enjoyed this story. Thanks for sticking with it for so long *huggles*

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Review #14, by luvjamesnoliver 

20th October 2008:
You contiue to amaze me with your brillentness(not sure if that's a word but oh well).
I feel so sad for Tom he wants so badly to mend things with Merope but he can't find her.
Then poor Merope I just want so much to reach out and help her.
And Bethe she just bearly missed Merope.*blow nose on tissue*
Awsome chapter as always!

Author's Response: Hello hello! Thanks for coming to review :D I know, I wanted it to be the ultimate tragedy that Tom had finally accepted that he was happy with Merope (and he really did love her in his own way) but just as he was ready to come back to her, their paths never crossed again. And yes, the same thing happened with Bethe too. *blows nose with you* Glad you enjoyed this and I appreciate your review :)

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Review #15, by Billion 

20th October 2008:
This must be one of the best chapters so far. A heartwrenching conclusion. Very well done. I feel so bad for Merope, Tom, and Bethe. You have definitely made these characters very real, and the locket very sinister (it was genius how you included it!). I'm trying to think of something useful to say but I can't, lol.

Author's Response: Aw, thanks dear :) This chapter was so important to me and I had been looking forward to writing it (as well as the epilogue) for a LONG time. I was so excited when I started writing it, yet very sad because I knew this story would be over and I'd have to move on. But Merope will always have a special place in my heart :) Glad you liked the locket! I thought it would be uber-creepy if Salazar had pimped out Merope in order to create his ultimate minion, Voldemort. And I guess it was uber-creepy! I'm thrilled that you enjoyed this and thanks again for leaving a review, I appreciate it so very much. :) :)

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Review #16, by leaney 

20th October 2008:
Wow! I Must Say This Chapter Was Both Powerful and Touching In The Most Wonderful Of Ways! It's Compelled By Natural Emotion And An Effortless Sense Of Storytelling. Not Once Did It Seemed Force, Out Of Place, Or Unnatural. You Stuck To Everything In The Books But Added Your Own Touches Which Made It A Genius Piece to Read. You've Really Given Merope Her Justice And Thrust Her Into A New And Empowering Light. She's Seems Very Realistic In Your Portrayal. Bravo!


Author's Response: Hey Leaney! LOL Thank you very much :) I'm so glad you thought it seemed natural and not forced! I did want to stick to the books as strongly as I could, which was a goal I had from the beginning. I'm not a big fan of AU because I consider canon to be - well, canon. So as much as I wanted to give them a happy ending *sob* I had to stick to the tragedy laid out in the books. So happy you think Merope was given justice - I can't think of a better compliment about a minor character than that! Thanks, my dear :)

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Review #17, by shadowycorner 

20th October 2008:
I don't know what to say. Really, I don't. Firstly, I am weeping now. Only in these last moments did I realize how much I loved Merope as a character. I was shaking throughout the entire chapter. It was maddening to read how Tom kept missing her and searching in the wrong place, how Bethe missed her by an inch. The desperation and anguish Merope was going through...it killed me. Let me just state, very briefly, how flawlessly this was written. Every section, every piece of dialogue. And i knew it was not just a talking locket. After the bedside scene when Merope was sick I knew it was a piece of Salazar himself. Still, though, the scene where he actually got out was very horror-like. And...I really don't feel like giving a proper review, because...I don't know what to bloody say.

I was deeply moved by this chapter, especially the ending. Everything about it was perfectly written and reached out to me frighteningly but gorgeously at the same time. But ti broke my heart with each new word. The pain Merope had to experience, the sadness, it was all so intense, written with a passion and delivered with grace. And the emotions were overwhelmingly excellent. This chapter was one of the best climaxes ever. And the last line...I shivered many times while reading this story, but never as much.

Behind her, she left a baby boy who stopped crying to stare up at the stars as though they were very beautiful to him, as though with one chubby hand he could grasp the universe.

Like a line from a Harry Potter book itself. It's incredibly fatalistic and it just...I have no words to describe that, truly.

I can't believe Merope is dead. Her death really resonated with me. The way she felt so light and then she was floating above herself and her son...I'm just speechless. Jules, I'm so sorry for this crappy review, but I cannot properly describe just how much this story reached out to me and affected me. your writing is very moving, always new and fascinating. These characters were brought to vivacious and energetic life, glowing ever so brightly, leaving a real imprint in the heart of a reader. It is unbelievable what you have achieved with this fic. I'll go and read the epilogue now, but my dear, I am in awe. Absolutely. I loved this. The writing was nothing short of beautiful. And I still feel my heart cracking.

Author's Response: How is this a crappy review?! I think this is one of the best reviews I've ever gotten :) It made me smile the entire way through and I said "Awww" so many times my roommate came over to see if I had gone nuts. Thank you, thank you, thank you - I can't say that enough for the amazing compliments and encouragement you've given me. I'm beyond proud and pleased that you've enjoyed this story so much.

I work really hard on my stories and this is a better reward than I could have hoped for :) You totally called it! There were three or four of you who guessed towards the end that it was Salazar Slytherin's soul inside the locket. Now, what I'm wondering is whether Voldemort shared this locket with Salazar since it later on became his Horcrux, as we all know. I want to say yes, because it would be really interesting - this Horcrux has always seemed the most evil to me because of what it showed to Ron.

I got frustrated at myself for making both Tom and Bethe never find Merope - but I thought the tragedy would be complete that way. So many things could have happened differently, but this was the way it had to turn out, I think.

So glad you liked that last paragraph! :) Poor little Voldie, abandoned by his mother and his father never even knowing about him...

Liz, this review was phenomenal. My response definitely isn't worthy of it and you can be sure I'm backing it up to read again and again, in case the server blows up again. Your words mean so incredibly much to me. *huggles*

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Review #18, by pinks 

18th October 2008:
Great chapter! I thought this would be the end, so I'm happy to see you are writing an epilogue :).

Author's Response: Hey pinks! Thanks for reviewing :) Yeah there is an epilogue so we have a little ways to go before the real end!

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Review #19, by ginny321 

18th October 2008:
You did a wonderful job explaining everything from the books!
And the birth was perfect, especially the last line of the chapter.

Author's Response: Hey Ginny! I'm glad you like the way I tied things together ... I kept having to remind myself not to go crazy and to stick to canon. These scenes (at Borgin and Burkes, and the birth at the orphanage) were particularly fun to write because we never got to see them, and I had a lot of creative room. Thank you very much for reviewing :)

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Review #20, by momotwins 

18th October 2008:
Oh my. That was amazing. I swear, it makes the entire story so much more tragic to think Tom did want her back, and she was turned away by Bethe. You portrayed her final downward spiral and last days so perfectly, it made it so believable for her to succumb to death in the end. Wow. Incredible. I can't even find words. I can't wait to see the end, though I'm sad that the story is over.

Author's Response: Hi Megan! I'm so glad you liked this ending and you were kind enough not to criticize the way I wrote the childbirth ... after everyone's conversation at eHPF about this subject, I was worried sick that I would go and screw up too. (Think "hoo hoo hee hee." LMAO. I worship that person.) I know ... I thought to myself, "This is a pretty depressing story. Why not make it as depressing as possible?" So I had Tom searching for her and I had Bethe waiting to hear news of her, yet neither of them ever saw her again. You were the one who totally called this, too! I remember from your previous review.

Thanks so much for reviewing :) One epilogue to go and then *sniffle* it really will be over!

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Review #21, by Georgia Weasley 

18th October 2008:
Poor Merope! I love how you took the canon facts that we knew and wove them into a story full of grief and love and regret. It is so sad. I do think that making Tom go out in search of Merope was a stroke of brilliance. We always got the feeling that he just ditched her and ran, but your Tom is a much deeper and sympathetic character. The evil that emmanates from the locket is just creepy. Excellent chapter! I'm glad it's not quite over. I'll hate to see this one end!

Author's Response: Thanks Shanon :) Oh I'm so glad you've enjoyed this story. I love fanfiction because it's like having a writing prompt engine right at your fingers - we're given the facts and all we have to do is create a story around them. I'm beyond thrilled that you think Tom is sympathetic, because that's what I was going for. I feel bad for him and what we saw of him in canon is much too biased and not supported by facts ... he never gets to have his own say, which made it all the more enjoyable to create his character and give him a personality in this story. He's a tragic character too, after all he is the victim of the love potion. Yes I tried to think of the creepiest way to get the locket to behave that would make anyone want to sell it fast! Thanks so much for your review ... I'm sad that the story is ending too but it's been so much fun writing it. :)

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Review #22, by Labby 

18th October 2008:
Wow, I guess all of the questions I had been forming were finally answered in this chapter. It's sad that Merope went to Bethe, but because of what happened she wasn't let in. I bet that must have been difficult for Bethe. And the fact that a lot of what resulted happened because someone stole from her. I wonder if the locket set that up too. Never trust a talking locket. I never would have suspected it was Slytherin.. I'm not sure why. It certainly makes sense and I love how you wrapped out what happened in canon here, giving the locket the Borgin and Burkes. If only she knew how much that locket was worth.. maybe.

Poor Tom as well. He really did have a time of happiness, yet he couldn't do anything to find her. If only she knew he was looking for her.. that he could have been her help. I suppose there are a lot of if onlys in this story, and it's sad to see that it happened this way for Merope. I love the story you've created here.. it's always going to be the way I think of Merope and Tom and Voldemort's birth.. further expanded here than by the books. I love your writing and I'm sad to see this is coming towards the end. Wonderful chapter.. I'm looking forward to the epilogue!

Author's Response: Hey Jamie, thanks for coming by again :D I'm happy that your questions were answered in this chapter. I had a lot of information to address so I was worried that I had left something out! "Never trust a talking locket" - absolutely! I love Mr. Weasley's quote from the books: Never trust something if you can't see where it keeps its brain. Yes, this is how I imagined the scene where Merope sells the locket happened. I thought it might explain why she was desperate enough to get rid of it that she accepted 10 Galleons only - it was a result of her ignorance about money as well as the locket creeping her out too much.

There are a lot of "onlys" in this story and "what ifs" - it didn't have to turn out the way it did, and that makes it most tragic. :( Aw thanks Jamie, I don't want to claim that this is the bottom-line version of what happened to Tom and Merope - but it's a possibility and very fun to create.

Glad you liked it, hun and thank you for reviewing!

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