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18 Reviews Found

Review #1, by Freddie Rindklip 

18th February 2017:
I am not much of a reviewer, but I really like it.

Author's Response: I'm really happy that you're enjoying it.

Thank you for reading and reviewing!


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Review #2, by Veritaserum27 

26th November 2015:
Hi there Dan,

I tried to get this all wrapped up last night, but Iíd been baking all day long and I ended up falling asleep - haha! Anyway - here is a Thanksgiving Day review for you!

I loved the first scene with Susan. Actually, I love Susan. One of the things that J.K. did with her characters was to make magic Ďthe great equalizer.í Being a Quidditch player or an Auror or even Minister or Headmaster/mistress wasnít ever construed as typically a manís job. Along with her lack of prejudice in other areas, this is one of the reasons why I loved the series so much. I adore reading stories like yours where characters are strong, capable and brilliant regardless of their gender or sexuality or race. And I love Susan.

Poor Draco. As usual, I feel like heís going to be stuck having to make a decision between two very, very bad choices. This line makes me a little nervous:

He vaguely remembered skimming a pamphlet from the Magical Creatures Department years ago and he could have sworn that it said that elves were not able to repair curse damage,

I really hope this isnít foreshadowing of some sort. But goon on Astoria for not being as dim-witted or as disloyal as her husband predicts. Another strong female character. Noted. Iím a bit surprised that Narcissa Malfoy was so poor with money. She actually always struck me as someone who was really with-it when it came to maintaining her familyís posterity. Either someone has siphoned off the Malfoy fortune or Lucius always took care of all of that and when he became ill and eventually passed, Narcissa didnít know how to keep track of their money.

I noticed this chapter contains three vignettes like most of yours, but unlike the others, this final section is about the same character as the first one. And whooo boy, does it ever have some action. Hold on to your hats! I enjoyed reading the skirmish at the Ministry quite a bit, but I did not expect Susan to get injured so badly.

ďHugo, get over here!Ē Alís voice rang with barely contained panic. More bad news. At the rate things were going, Hugo was probably digging a hole nearby.

Thereís that humor again. And much needed this time. Was Susan referring to Ron or Harry when she said ďcall your dad?Ē

I know I wonít be able to wait very long to get to the next chapter - YIKES! What a cliffhanger.

Sorry this review isnít as long as usual, but I wanted to spread some Thanksgiving cheer.

♥ Beth


Author's Response: Hi, Beth! Happy Black Friday Weekend to you!

I love Susan, too. Time and again, she has Big Moments and steals scenes in this story. I don't know what I'm going to do with her. Maybe write an entire novel about her someday? If only there was time...

Draco spends a lot of time dealing with confusing decisions in this story. That's part of what makes him fun to write: he's always working with a little less information than most of the other characters. He's not the Head Auror or a high-ranking official in the Department of Magical Law. He's lived the majority of his adult life on the fringe of "polite society" because of his family's involvement in the war. So he spends a lot of time trying to work things our for himself based on what little he knows for sure plus a lot of personal insight and intuition. I really enjoyed writing his inner dialog as he puzzles through things.

Astoria is not dimwitted or disloyal in the slightest. She's a very strong character and Draco would be hopelessly lost without her. I don't think that Narcissa ever had to manage money before old Lucius passed away. I doubt that Cygnus and Druella would have considered that a "proper" thing for their youngest daughter to worry herself with and I'm confident that Lucius always made a big show of money being no concern for his family. All she had ever seen anyone do with money was spend it, and she probably trusted the Goblins implicitly to manage her financial affairs. That was a poor choice.

I mixed up the structure of the chapters a lot in this story, mostly based on what I needed to get done in each one. Three seemed like a good good number for the "scenes" in each chapter, but I don't think I stuck with it religiously.

I love Susan's gallows humor. Later on in the story, you'll meet a Beauxbatons professor who could be an older version of Susan. The motif works for me. I honestly don't remember whether Susan was telling Hugo to contact Ron or Al to contact Harry. Since it's sort of assumed that the two of them were together, I doubt that it mattered much to Susan.

A cliffhanger, you say? Well, you would certainly know one if you saw it. :p

Thank so much for brightening my Turkey Day! I always enjoy it when you stop by!


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Review #3, by GingeredTea 

23rd May 2015:
One of the things I think that makes your story so engaging is the fact that you donít really have any Ďsmallí characters. I love that this chapter began with Susan!

Even after all this time, with a son who married a Weasley and produced a grand-daughter he loves, Malfoy still has such ĎMalfoyí moments: ďÖbut it wasnít like he really paid attention to any of the Granger-Weaselís moral crusades. Maybe he had elves mixed up with fairies or something.Ē

I'm glad to see his wife isn't going to leave him. He went from pompous thoughts being so...uncertain - which seemed very in character, even though we don't get to see that side in the books really.

Oh I held my breath through the whole Susan scene. Iím not sure if Harry would have managed to fix this whole mess without all his friends - and this scene sort of proved that point. She really pulls off a big stunt, getting not only herself out of there but Albus and Hugo! Merlin Al and Hugo are so innocent! Gah! That whole scene had me on edge! Despite that, they managed to pull it together and get out of there - not safe and sound, but alive, at least for the moment.

My apologies again for the late review. Hope this made up for a tiny bit. ;-)

Author's Response: Eh, I think there are definitely some characters that end up with "small" parts. I'll always feel badly that I wasn't able to work Luna into the story more often. Susan, on the other hand, developed a tendency to steal scenes. Even entire chapters in some cases. She's incredibly enjoyable to write.

One thing about writing Draco is that you can't stray too far from the small conceits and character flaws that make him who he is. Otherwise, he just doesn't sound right. I really don't like stories that turn him into a white-washed redemption story or some sort of arch-villain. He is neither.

I'll take Susan's big fight scene over all but one other fight scene in the story. I love the way it came together and I love her as an action heroine. I'm glad you liked it.

No apologies necessary! Life is busy and we all lost track sometimes. Thanks for reading and reviewing!


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Review #4, by Courtney Dark 

10th December 2013:
Tag!

Why has it been so ridiculously long since I last read this story? It is just so amazing and you have so many awesome, complex characters and the story line is epic - and I am so glad that I am FINALLY back! I'm sorry it hasn't taken me such an absurdly long time to get to this chapter!

I really enjoyed this chapter! Every part of it was pretty much perfect - there was humour and a lot of action, which is always nice!

I really enjoy the sections from Susan's point of view, partly because I love that one of your central characters is a minor canon character! And she just has such a great, realistic seeming personality! I enjoyed her conversation with Terry, for no other reason that I just enjoyed it - it was fun to read!

I absolutely adored the section from Draco's point of view. Goyle's spelling is absolutely atrocious and I loved the little story about Brutus Malfoy. And then the conversation between Draco and Astoria was absolutely perfect - after reading Detox, I love those two even more! I actually loved out loud at the line: ďPenniless? Destitute? Beggared? Impecunious?Ē It amazes me that you are so good at writing these action filled moments and drama, and also manage to have perfect comic timing.

Susan's second point of view was just amazing to read! I loved all the little details you added in to make it seem more realistic - and then the escape from the Ministry was just brilliant!

I especially enjoyed the interactions between Hugo and Al - there were so many bits and pieces throughout this section that made me laugh - one really random example was the line: ďUm, it sucks. What are you doing here?Ē Your characterizations of Hugo and Al are so awesome, and I love the way they bicker, even in a potential life or death situation.

This was an amazing chapter!

Courtney:)

Author's Response: Hi, Courtney!

I have missed you! Of course, I don't mind that you took a detour through Detox. ;)

When I write, I like to mix humor and action, humor and drama, humor and romance... yeah, I pretty much need to have humor in everything.

I really grew to love writing Susan's point of view while I was working on this. Pretty much anything with Susan in it, actually. She became a really awesome presence in the story.

I grew to love Draco and Astoria as a pairing during this story, so much so that I had to try my hand at them in other situations. They go together so well. I'm really pleased you liked Astoria's sarcastic attempt not to sound "common". That was one of my favorite lines.

The second Susan section was meant to have that feel of barreling along at high speed toward the end of the chapter, but taking a moment or two here and there to sort of indulge Al and Hugo and their inexperience in violent, dangerous confrontations. I'm glad it held together well for you!

So pleased you liked this! The 3-chapter arc that begins with this one was one of my favorite parts of the entire story to write. Thanks for reading and reviewing!


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Review #5, by TheHeirOfSlytherin 

7th February 2013:
Ah, I knew it. Astoria is just a perfect balance in Draco's life, he should have known that he wouldn't leave her. I wanted to hit, too. I love how you write their relationship, how protective they are of their family. I just hope Draco doesn't think that talking to Goyle will be helpful.

Action! I loved the action in the Ministry, the fear between the cousins, who've never been in that situation, or any even re Tory like it, before was awesome. Really well done, although I was scared that they were scared. And Hugo was freaking out. And I just knew something was going to happen, I just didn't know who it'd be - I really hope Susan will be okay.

But, oh, of all the happy thoughts. If I were Hugo, I'd die of shame having my cousin say all of that, no matter the situation. I'd rather be fighting. But, hey, he got the message to Ron, so my fingers are crossed that they get help in time. :) Depsite the embarrassment Hugo probably felt, I really loved how well you wrote them panicked, yet trying to stay calm as well. To feel all sorts of emotions at once would be hard to deal with.

Great chapter!

Sam.

Author's Response: I think of Astoria as being Draco's strength and his conscience. She's the "voice of reason" in the back of his head, bringing out some of his better traits and keeping the bad ones -- which are definitely still there -- in check.

The fight scene in the Ministry was one of my favorites in the story. As much as Susan is a calming, logical, level-headed presence, I also wanted to make it clear that she's a Senior Auror and she can fight as well as anyone. Unfortunately, it didn't turn out to be quite good enough.

Ah, poor Hugo. He's in way, way over his head. And yes, Al abuses him just a bit. But he does redeem himself later on. I think you'll be pleased with how things turn out for him.

Glad you liked it. Thanks for reading and reviewing!


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Review #6, by academica 

4th September 2012:
Hi Dan! I'm sorry that this review took a little longer than usual. I do love your awesome new banner! :)

A half-century of peace and prosperity had begotten two entire generations of witches and wizards who tended to speak without thinking and lacked the instinct to be mindful of who might be standing behind them.

^I really like this line. I think it's a perfect way to characterize the pacific nature of next-gen and to conceptualize how the wizarding world must have changed after Voldemort's downfall in canon.

I love how you've pulled minor characters into a more prominent role in your story. You've really breathed life into Susan and Terry with this little snippet (beyond a mere glimpse of me shipping them, though I don't deny that I felt it here). I also like the way you used their interaction to set the tone and create the atmosphere for this chapter.

The Draco/Astoria scene was positively touching. I love that she's logical and level-headed and barely blinks an eye when he panics about her (surely) imminent departure. I also love that he actually cares about losing her. The emotion in that scene was executed so perfectly. I ship them hard here!

Since you asked, I'm going to be honest and say that I wasn't the biggest fan of the fight scene in this chapter. I don't know if it was as well-executed as some of the others I've read from you. For one thing, it seemed a bit one-sided at times; Susan and the "kids" (not actually children, but hey) would fire off specific curses, but I didn't feel that quite the same attention was paid to the opposition, beyond following the effects of their curses. Furthermore, it seemed a little unlikely that one of them would only be injured right there at the end. We're dealing with seasoned Death Eaters here, and I would have thought that Al or Hugo would have at least sustained a cut or bruise in the process. I also wasn't exactly sure about the dialogue - I get that Susan was injured, but I don't know if the cursing really fit in with the characterization I've seen so far. She's certainly tough, but I think it was just a bit too... snappy, maybe?... for my taste there at the end. Same thing with the boys - if they're really out of their depth here, the joking seems a little out of place.

Overall, though, I do really like Susan. She's clearly smart and brave, and it's nice to see her get that kind of attention since I think she came across as a bit mild-mannered and forgettable in canon. This version seems like a woman with whom Hermione, with all her strength, would associate.

Nice work! I hope this review helps you out! :)

-Amanda

Author's Response: Hey, there! No worries about the timing. We're all busy, and I appreciate all the time you offer to me and the other authors who frequent your reviewing thread!

To me, Susan's observation is one of the core themes of the entire story. The witches and wizards born after Voldemort's fall are all children, in a sense. Naive and ignorant of just how dangerous the magical world can be. They are not at all ready to face the kinds of challenges that their parents and grandparents had to survive. And their parents and grandparents worked hard to spare them that sort of hardship. It's one of those things that become a bit self-fulfilling.

Susan is my absolute favorite minor character in this story. I hope you're starting to get an idea why. I was really excited to be able to highlight her in this chapter.

Draco and Astoria are probably the closest thing I have to a "love story" in CoB. The two of them are truly, deeply, madly in love with one another. She is the reason that Draco changed, and she sees him as the person that he wants to be, not the person he used to be. I really enjoy writing them.

Hmmnn... Your reaction to the fight scene was really interesting and it makes me want to go back and read it again. Like, immediately. ;) You definitely have some valid points. Al and Hugo did come out of the fight unscathed, and that might not have been the most realistic choice. I don't think most of the Ministerial Security agents were "seasoned Death Eaters", though. Nott is as close as they get, and if you recall, he sat out the Battle of Hogwarts after evacuating from the school. The attackers are not in Susan's league, but the do have numbers on their side. Perhaps Al and Hugo shouldn't have made it out so easily.

Susan will be back several more times before the story is done. She is a steady, principled and calming voice in this otherwise turbulent story.

Your reviews are always helpful, dear! Thanks so much!


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Review #7, by anonymous 

16th July 2012:
reviewing again because I truly think this story is deserving of it; great job so far, I really enjoy those cliff hangers at the end even though they also annoy the crap out of me but that is what a good author is suppose to do so no complains =D

I am really suspecting arabela though. she seems shady but innocent at the same time since in the beginning you told us she has her own personal motivation and plan to help whatever goal she is reaching, etc etc

Author's Response: Hi, there!

Cliff hangers are one of my specialties, I guess you'd say. I really enjoy fiddling with the circumstances to get them to come out just so. Sorry they annoy you, but they do keep you coming back for more. ;)

Arabela is certainly a possible alter-ego for Lady Tenabra, although not the only one. Time will tell...

Thanks for taking a few moments to leave a review!


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Review #8, by Pixileanin 

8th June 2012:
"They seemed like children, although at her age, many people did."

I like this Susan. Have I said that before? I can't remember, but I really like her. I had forgotten if Terry Boot had appeared in the story before, but this was a good intro/reminder. Too bad about Susan's coffee though. I guess something has to be sacrificed for the greater good. You had her so bogged down in the muck, but then she got to DO something about it. That probably made her week right there, letting her take all her frustrations out on her so-called superiors. (If only normal people got the chance to do that every once in a while. I hear it clears the head.) It was quite fortuitous that she ran into Al in the atrium. I think you contrasted Al and Hugo's inexperience well along-side Susan's seasoned reasoning. And you managed to add a bit of levity that only the NextGen characters could bring. That scene was packed with action! You didn't make it too easy on them AND you ended with a cliffhanger. Bravo!

"I loved your mother dearly, but she didn't have the financial sense that Merlin gave a drunken mountain troll. She lost it all, didn't she?"

Hello, Astoria. I'm glad you're back! Seeing Draco and Astoria again was a real treat. I liked how they interacted with each other, and Draco's fears about what Astoria would do when she found out about their situation. Goyle's note and Draco's reaction to it were entertaining as well. I suppose he's going to literally keep that in his back (or front) pocket for now and see if it becomes useful later. Very clever (or desperate) of him.

I found the line about Draco thinking that he and Astoria were from the same background interesting. I suppose from his point of view, he was thinking about both of them being from pureblood families. But really, his upbringing was much darker, so much of it was filled with dread and an overwhelming sense of helplessness, while I'm sure Astoria's home life was less so (since Voldemort didn't constantly show up for tea at her place and wreak havoc with her servants and such). It's interesting that you've chosen to highlight Draco's personality this way, that he has such strong emotional reactions to loosing things and people that it causes him to despair so. It makes sense. Having him paired with someone as pragmatic as Astoria was a great way to showcase this.

I also noticed that everyone seems to be nice to owls except for Draco. Explains why no one every writes him with a pet, doesn't it?

Great chapter, as always!

Author's Response: Hello, again!

The version of Susan in CoB is one of my proudest creations, right up there with Lady Tenabra. She's strong, smart, brave, thoughtful, kind, sarcastic... seems like an all-around good person to know. Without her, Al and Hugo would have been doomed. They're both having to grow up quickly.

Astoria is back, and I promise you'll see her more often from here on out. I really like her as a character, as well. Like her husband, she's not perfect. But she has a quiet sort of strength and a good head on her shoulders.

I think Draco is thinking more about the fact that they both come from wealthy, pure blood families, but you're right. Once you get past that, the similarities pretty much end. Draco is facing the loss of everything he was raised to think of as important, so he is legitimately terrified. She is his rock in this situation. And he is definitely not very nice to the post owls.

I'm glad you enjoyed the chapter. Thanks so much for reading and reviewing!


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Review #9, by Jchrissy 

5th June 2012:
Susan/ Al and Hugo

I feel so bad for placing her as lady T at first! She is one of my favorite characters! It is obvouis how much effort you put into really developing her character, not just putting her in the position of a minor Canon and going with it. She has her own personaility, her o part in this story has beenrelatively small up until now and I LOVE what you are doing with her. Besides hurting her, but I know you wouldít dare kill her off ;). The way she cares about the boys is really touching, it shows just how close she has been to harry and the rest of the group. I love that you put enough detail into your writing so without giving a backstory, we still understand that Susan has always been there.

The entire running/chasing scene was so well written! I was on the edge of my (figurative) seat! Iím actually standing.. soo.



I still love what you have done with the children. Al and Hugo are great in this.
Hugo sort of reminds me of Hermione when he points that they havenít done anything wrong. Al seems to catch on a little faster, but you can tell Hugo wants to believe that they canít be in trouble for something they havenít done.

Wow, way to make me blush with Alís little.. umm... suggestion. Really, I was blushing. haha!!!



Draco/Astoria

I canít get over how much I love Astoria. She is no nonsense, but still caring. She gives Draco tough love, but gives him compassion. She is hard when she knows it is what needs to be done, then makes sure he knows she still loves him. I just really think you have created an amazing dynamic for the two. They really are bumping up to my favorite ship. Draco has too much pride still. He demonstrates that with his afterthought toward Goyleís letter. I hope he realizes that if he got involved with that, Astoria would leave him (at least I think so). Maybe he is trying to preserve and protect his family, I donít know, but I do know he wont do anything good as a husband, father, and grandfather, if he is sitting in Azkaban.

You have matured Draco without taking away his prejudice completely, and without taking away his arrogance. I love it. He thinks now, he controls himself, and he understands a lot more, but he is still Draco Malfoy.


I hope I have another chance to review today! Iíll be in and out between a few new evaluations and my current clients, but everything today is pretty quick and simple. Crossing my fingers to get in one more chapter!

Thanks for the good luck, the twins were wonderful, their parentís will pose a problem. Why you would pay (I relatively high amount, I might add) to have someone come in and do their job, then tell them that they are wrong and their children are perfect (obviously they donít even think that if they contacted me in the first place) is beyond me. I wanted to say, ďYes, every child is perfect to their parents, but your children canít be set down for half a second without screaming, nor can they be placed in any kind of social environment without shutting down. You are screwing up, let me help.Ē The mother had long nails though, so I kept my mouth shut! ;)

See you soon!!!

Author's Response: Hello, again, and welcome to what I think of as my three-chapter "Susan Arc." I have come to really love the character, as well. And I wanted to really focus on her for a bit. So that's the point of this section. I'm so glad that you like her, as well, and that, you know, you don't think she's Lady Tenabra any more. Although I still have to finish the story. Wow. That would really mess with people. Bwahahah!

Al and Hugo are finding their way, I guess you'd say. Nothing in their lives has prepared them for anything like this. They were born into a peaceful world and they were sheltered by their family to keep them away from the press and other attention-seekers. Suddenly, they've been thrust into the beginnings of a war. It's not going to be easy for them. And I'm glad that you liked Al's "happy thought" to help Hugo with his patronus. Although I hadn't really pictured you as the blushing type...

I am in love with writing Draco and Astoria. Like you said, I've tried to keep him very true to his book characterization. He's still arrogant and somewhat prejudiced, but he loves his family dearly and will do anything to protect them. Astoria is his better half, tempering his bad qualities and helping to bring out his good ones. And she's a very smart cookie.

In general, I find that I'm much more likely to have an issue with parents than with their kids. And if I do have an issue with a kid, I can almost always trace it directly back to the parents. Parents who can see no fault with their own children -- and by extension, their own parenting -- even when the issues are right there in black and white are infuriating. My compliments on your patience.

Thanks so much for all of your thoughts and insights!


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Review #10, by Ashling586 

6th May 2012:
Here with your review request. I felt that this was another wonderful chapter to an amazing story. I really liked both of Susan's scenes. Beside Hermione, your version of Susan has become my second favorite character of all time. I am always excited to see what she will come up with next. I liked the flow of this chapter and even though there was a lot of things going on in this chapter, it was all very well balanced. I really think you have a great way with action scenes. I wish was half as good with action scenes. I just hope that Susan will be okay, I think I will be devastated if she were to die.
Can't wait to read the next chapter. Great job.

Author's Response: Hey, Ash! Nice to see you again.

I love Susan to death. I didn't really have any sort of picture of her character when I started out, and she's just sort of grown into this very sage, steadying presence. I really wanted to give her a chance to shine, so this chapter and the two after it are focused heavily on either her character or her welfare.

I obviously can't say for sure, but I'm pretty sure that Susan will be OK. ;) I would love to go on writing her in other ways.

Thanks so much for reading and reviewing!


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Review #11, by Elenia 

6th May 2012:
If you could kindly just ignore the user name and not realise it's me again d:

Woah, amazing chapter! So many things happened!

Susan! Yey for her! I love it how you have so many of these minor characters here that you concentrate on too! I'm guessing this will be the start of plot line that focuses on her? Anyways, I've liked her character all along, and this only strengthened the image I have of her.

I liked the whole discussion with Terry. At first I got the feeling that maybe something bad was going to happen, but it was just Terry and him making sure nobody was listening, which was once again really clever and well thought. You never let us forget that they're followed.

Hahaa, and here we have a scene with the Malfoys, just when I was wondering it in the last review. I liked Draco and how he was too proud to admit even to his wife that he was actually broke. I also liked how Astoria handled the whole situation. She seems to be exactly how I pictured her to be.

Hmm, is Draco going to go and meet Goyle? I think he will, I think he wants to be useful and sees his opportunity there to infiltrate amongst the bad guys. Oh well, I'll just have to wait and see (:

Loved Goyle's letter btw, it was hilarious!

Then we get to the part where all the action happens! Wow, blew me away with that scene once again! You really have the talent of writing action scenes! I'm all anxious, practically biting my nails when I read them, that's how good I think they are!

I can't help but feel something bad is going to happen to Susan. I don't know, maybe it's because of her accident and the fact that you mentioned that there will be three chapters that concentrate on her and that nobody 'important' has died from the good side except Ginny, but that happened before the whole story even started. I hope that's not the case though! I've started to like her character quite a lot, she's one of my favourites after the trio. Yep, waiting patiently again d:

*sigh* I don't think I'll manage to do any writing today *mutters something about addicting stories and heads to the next chapter*

See you soon (:

~E

Author's Response: Wow, this mysterious new reader really seems to like the story. ;)

This is the first chapter of my three-chapter "Susan Arc." I really love the way that her character has emerged and I want to do as much with her as I can, so I decided to take her on a bit of a journey.

The discussion with Terry highlights how depressing, difficult and outright dangerous life inside the Ministry has become.

Draco has indeed become destitute, but Astoria is going to stand by him. I really liked being able to do this with both of their characters. For Draco, I wanted to show that he's really about more than just his wealth and power. In that sense, he's a much better man than his father ever was. And Astoria is such a strong, independent woman. I have a few of those running around now.

Goyle's letter was a lot of fun to write. My first draft was much more crude, but my beta reader, in her wisdom, talked me into toning it down to make it less offensive and more legible. She's smart.

Susan, Al and Hugo's escape from the Ministry is the kind of scene I **love** to write. Fighting their way out gave Susan a chance to really show just what a talented, powerful witch she is. At times, even I was on the edge of my seat and I knew what was coming next.

So please feel free to keep coming back, mystery reader. I really love your reviews. They give me a lot to think about. Thanks so much!


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Review #12, by shadowcat2 

30th April 2012:
Tenabra is getting more and more smarter. Poor Susan. She is definitely a strong character. I hope she gets well. Albus's joke at the end made me laugh. It was a nice change after such a serious chapter. :)

Author's Response: Never underestimate Tenabra. She's brilliant, cold and ruthless.

I really wanted to give Susan a chance to shine. She has very rapidly become my favorite minor character in the entire story. So this three-chapter arc focuses on her and her situation a great deal.

I enjoyed writing Albus's means of helping Hugo find a happy thought, even though I had some concerns about whether it would cause me problems with validation. It was just too much fun.

Thanks for all of the awesome reviews!


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Review #13, by dirtydeedsdonedirtcheap 

14th April 2012:
For the record I was straightening my hair as I read this chapter. I finished doing my hair before I finished reading the chapter.

It takes me close to 45 minutes to do my hair.

You are really something else, sir!

Now, I really don't know where to begin because so much happened in this chapter it's just insane. First off, three cheers for Susan! How amazing is she? You give your minor characters the light they truly deserve. I'm never missing them, (well maybe Octavia) because it seems they're always jumping back into the story at the appropriate times.

For the third time since returning home to Malfoy Manor, he nearly stood up and demanded to know how the elf had repaired the house.

I thought that was hysterical. I actually forgot about that because it feels like the attack on the Manor happened ages ago. I have a question actually concerning the timeline. How long has it been since the beginning until now? It really reads, to me, as a short period of time but then again it could be a few months (maybe 6) or as little two months. I don't recall anything significant about the weather either, but then again I'm American so weather around the world isn't my strong point.

When she found out that he was a pauper, and worse that he'd been lying to her about it, she was certain to move back to Switzerland with her parents. He was sure of it. And that would be the cruelest blow of all.

I had to roll my eyes at this. Because I'll never understand what it is about men and why they think money is the deciding factor when it comes to relationship. Actually, I do understand it, it's the whole male/female thought processes and I suppose your argument would be that because of the family that Draco was raised in, money, status and power are three key elements to life. If he doesn't have money he can't have status and power, right? So, it would make sense that thinks Astoria would leave him but if I remember correctly, Astoria's family had left...hadn't they? Was it ever confirmed that they fought in the war or had any part with the Death Eaters? So, wouldn't he think that she would think/react differently even though she grew up with a similar background.

Calling Goyle a halfwit was probably giving him three eighths of a wit too much credit.

^Funny. As I read that section I had the eerie feeling that Draco is actually going to join Goyle and the rest. Not because he strongly believes that they're in the right because his family has changed over the years thanks to the relationship of Rose/Scorpius but because 'they' (meaning Goyle, etc) are either going to:

1. Do something to his family, where either Scorpius/Astoria or Octavia, the three people Draco cares about will get hurt. But since Scorpius and Astoria are purebloods and this is all about blood yet again, it would have to be the granddaughter because she isn't 'pure.'
2. He's going to need to pull some strings to save his manor, which is going back to the status and power because even though tarnished, it still means something to him.

On a side note, I hope Susan lives. You haven't killed off anyone significant yet and it feels like this is the turning point where something awful is going to soon happen. A storm is brewing!

Author's Response: Welcome back, my friend! I don't think I could spend 45 minutes on my hair if I combed them one by one. Then again, my motto for hair is "low maintenance." At least you had something interesting to pass the time.

I've said it several times: Susan is my favorite supporting character in the entire story. It was awesome to be able to really let her shine in this chapter. Octavia will be back in a big way very soon. Hang tight...

The timeline... you know, I've struggled with that a lot. In my mind, somewhere around two months have passed between the beginning of the story and this chapter. Honestly, I've kept it a bit vague because I'm worried about messing it up somehow. The story is designed to be very fast-paced. The story began shortly after 1 September (remember that Harry was telling Ginny about seeing their granddaughter with her new school robes and wand when he was sitting by her grave). So by now we're somewhere near the end of October. I expect the entire story will be wrapped up before Thanksgiving. I'm American as well, so I've relied on my beta reader 100% to clue me in on what the weather is likely to be like.

Yes, Draco is male to a fault. His entire life, he's been taught to measure self-worth in terms of money and power, so it's no surprise that he thinks the way he does. Astoria's parents and sister have fled to her father's ski lodge in the Swiss Alps to wait out the turmoil in Britain. There is nothing in canon as to whether the Greengrass family were Death Eaters, so I've chosen to write them as though they believed in the idea of blood purity but chose to stay out of the politics of the war, somewhat like Sirius and Regulus Black's parents.

Your speculation about whether Draco will try to contact Goyle and what that will lead to is right in a way and wrong in a way. But I can't tell you which ways. :-P

A storm is definitely brewing. At the rate things are going, I don't think the story would be very realistic if there weren't some casualties. But I do have a very soft spot in my heart for Susan, so I think she'll be alright.

I love all of your reviews! Please come back soon, and thanks so much!


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Review #14, by CloakAuror9 

21st March 2012:
Hey there!

I didn't know if you've noticed or not, but you're story is in the 'Featured Stories' in the archives' homepage. I just want to congratulate you for that, and the story has really come a long way. I remember when I read the first few chapter your story and I was think 'What the heck is this all about?' I had such a vague idea back then of how fantastic this story would be.

There's a lot more progress happening each chapter, but it only adds more unanswered questions to ask. I have a feeling that you have been giving us subtle hints as to what is really happening besides the obvious, but I may not have pick up on that...just yet ;)

The Wotters are under-attack by the pure-bloods, is this going to be like Wizarding War III ? I have a feeling it will be, but I always have the wrong feelings when it comes to your story.

The best part in this chapter is Goyle's letter and Draco's thoughts about him. It was just so funny! Especially his spelling mistakes!

Overall, a very sad, but thrilling chapter! I totally love this, not just the chapter, but the whole story in general. (Even though I was kind of in the dark for the first few chapters, but like I said those were dark dark times.)

Ta,
CloakAuror9 xx

Author's Response: Thanks so much for the congrats. I was pretty much floored when I saw Noblevyne's blog post. I'm still not quite sure what to think of it. Makes me feel like I've done something right.

The story has come quite a long way. I wish I could claim that I had thought out every detail before I started, but that wouldn't be true. The story has taken some substantial twists and turns in my own mind as I've become more settled with what sounds consistent and believable and what doesn't. I think I have a pretty good idea of how things will end at this point, although some details still need to be worked out.

The situation definitely has all the trappings of a war, but we're not quite there yet. Whether it will reach that point remains to be seen.

Poor Goyle. He's such a buffoon, and prison was not kind to him. Still, he's dancing a line between sides in a way. He just can't be as evil as most of the wizards surrounding him.

I'm really glad that you enjoyed the chapter, and it's been great to have you back reviewing again. Thanks so much!


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Review #15, by ginerva_molly_weasley 

18th March 2012:
Ooh now I love this!

It focus' mainly on Susan and the weaknesses within the ministry at the moment which seems to be a completely different approach to what you've taken on before which in my opinion has worked extremely well!

You've made the atmosphere at the ministry seem very believable with the aurors being followed and suspicion being put on them which makes them be assigned to the mundane tasks which is a complete insult compared to their 454 years of experience however I can see it being so believable given the current climate.

The fact that Terry scared Susan so much is interesting as it shows that regardless of how much experience they've had they can still get frightened by being in an unknown situation and even Susan wouldn't have recognised Terry's voice because of the panic that she would have been feeling at the fact that she was being talked to by someone who couldn't be seen whilst she was on her own.

Draco... Oh Draco. I can't believe he actually thought Astoria would leave him just because he was in a lot of debt and they might lose the house. Love isn't like that at all and I just think that he may not have known just how much Astoria loved him. I also can't believe that he thought she wouldn't have noticed that he was in money trouble. Women really do notice everything!

The way you've made the death eaters/ new blood order people seem to have a complete lack of intelligence is good as they have never been seen really to be very intelligent whilst in canon so them not closing the door even when they knew Susan was in the office was just fab.

I think you wrote the action scene in particular very well and am so glad you are carrying on with this...

Also have you ever thought of turning this into a podcast? Just a thought

Author's Response: Hello, again!

I'm so glad you enjoyed Susan's big chapter. I've really wanted to feature her for a while, and a great opportunity finally presented itself. Her life at the Ministry has become truly miserable by this point in the story, but she's far from the only one. Part of the point of the three-chapter arc that begins with this one is that many people are growing tired of living under the tyranny of the Minister's pro-pure blood agenda.

Draco and Astoria's section, to be honest, was mostly just to establish that they have returned to Britain and that their relationship is still as strong as ever, in spite of Draco's suspicions to the contrary.

The New Blood Order is not the best organized bunch, nor is it composed of the best and brightest the Ministry has to offer. But they do have a high opinion of themselves, which is why Rowle seemed to believe that he was up to the task of stopping Susan from escaping. Lastly, there will be a lot more action scenes before the story is all done, so I'm glad you like them.

I really don't know much about podcasts or how they work. If you have a strong feeling about it, PM me. Happy to discuss it.

Thanks again for reading and reviewing!


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Review #16, by Remus 

9th March 2012:
So...short review because I honestly don't know what else to say except me read and mentally flair at the end of each chapter.

Thanks for bringing Draco and Astoria back! I've missed them. Especially Astoria and her way to tame Draco. Seriously...I vote for a one-shot about those two! XD

I seriously just did a loud gasp! Tenabra is going after everyone! OMG! And Susan comes to save the day. Again. That's fantastic! You made me really care about her so I hope everything turns out alright with her in the end of all this.

...

Seriously?! I feel like I spoke too soon! Hope she doesn't die!! :S

Gah! I wanna read what happens next...but I gotta be fair to everyone! Hahaha! XD

--Perelandra

Author's Response: So I had been missing Draco and Astoria, myself. And I really needed to get them back into the flow of things because their role in the story is far from over. Could I write a one-shot about the two of them? I'll make you a deal: you come up with an interesting premise for the story and I'll write it when I'm taking a break from this one.

Tenabra and Harry/Ron/Hermione are locked in a back-and-forth battle where neither side seems to be able to get the upper hand for very long. And Susan does save the day, as you know by now, but she pays a very high price for it. Her fate is explained over the next two chapters.

I understand your need to be fair. The story will be here waiting on you!

Thanks so much for reading and reviewing!


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Review #17, by Roots in Water 

28th February 2012:
It's Roots in Water here with your review!

Another brilliant chapter! I really enjoyed reading this and found the new perspective of the story very interesting. I've always enjoyed your characterisation of Susan and you really allowed her to shine here!

The insider's perspective on the story was, as I said before, very interesting. It's not too often that a story will focus on the "boring" stuff, the day-to-day life of a person trapped within the system, but, as you pointed out in this chapter, they can often play key roles in the victories. Without Susan, they wouldn't have known about the arrest warrants being issues for the Potter and Weasley children (even though they're not so young anymore).

This chapter also allowed us a glimpse inside of the Ministry takeover and I think that the little details you included about the changed processes (such as the "vetted" seniors) was very well done. I think that you're doing a great job of showing their politics realistically and in an interesting manner.

However, even in the midst of all the serious topics you still managed to include some humour! I loved the game Susan's playing- it's perfect for her situation! It's amusing to imagine their reactions as they try to puzzle through her "clues".

I also liked the inclusion of Draco in this chapter. When I first read the letter from Goyle (and, by the way, I think that the spelling mistakes were a great touch) I honestly thought that Draco would take him up on his offer as a way to get out of his trouble with Gringotts. I was very much relieved when he burned the letter in the end because I think that he could have very quickly dug himself deep into a hole he wouldn't be able to get out of.

As well I enjoyed the moment between Draco and Astoria. It's kind of sad that even after all their years together Draco still thought that Astoria didn't feel enough for him and that she would run away when things got tough. I'm very glad that she set him straight and I found it amusing that she knew what to do when he didn't- perhaps all it takes sometimes is for a person to come along who isn't so emotionally involved with the situation.

All in all I think that you did a great job with this chapter. Thanks for requesting and I do hope that Susan survives!

Author's Response: Hello, again, my friend!

I'm so very pleased that you enjoyed reading about Susan's terrible day. As boring as life at the Ministry under the Blood Order regime might be, I thought it was important to give the reader some insight into how they've managed to take over. It's a very unpleasant time, and Susan is right in the midst of it.

I'm starting to work on bringing Draco and Astoria back to the forefront of the story. They've been back-burnered for quite a while and they have some big moments coming up soon. Resolving their problems with Gringotts clears the way for what's coming next.

And Draco is still very insecure about his relationship with Astoria, even after all the decades. She's the best thing that ever happened to him, hands down, and at time he doesn't feel worthy of her. We'll see whether we can make that a little better by the end of the story.

Thanks so much for reading and reviewing!


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Review #18, by Em 

24th February 2012:
I found this story a few weeks ago and I've been following it religiously ever since. It's a fantastic story, exciting and intriguing. I hope you didn't kill off Susan there at the end of chapter 23, omg! :o

Author's Response: Hi, there. I always love to hear from a new reader.

Susan is hanging on by a thread. However, I strongly suspect that she'll pull through. ;-)

Thanks for reading and reviewing!


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