Reading Reviews for Bad Blood, Chapter 1: One
16 Reviews Found

Review #1, by MagiCrystal 

27th May 2014:
It was pretty interesting how you chose to write about James's time.

Author's Response: The Marauders' era is my favorite to write about -- I've written several one-shots and an entirely trilogy set in that era. So it was pretty natural!

Hope you enjoyed it, and thanks for reviewing!

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Review #2, by marlaina 

16th May 2014:
ah! I'm equally intrigued and terrified, nice work!

Author's Response: Thank you for reviewing! I'm glad you enjoyed it! :)

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Review #3, by CassiePotter 

22nd February 2014:
Hello! It's been a while, but I'm back to read some of your lovely writing! I thought I'd visit your author's page and this story jumped out as soon as I saw it!
I am so intrigued!!! I want to know who sent the letter and how on earth James is going to find them! I would have no idea where to even start looking, and he's promising to find the person within a week? Well, if anyone's going to do it, it might as well be James Potter! I'm really excited to see where you take this, especially after the end of the chapter! I'm off to read the next one now! 10/10
Cassie :)

Author's Response: Well, it's been a while since you left this, so we can consider ourselves even! It's lovely to see your name here again now that I'm responding to reviews.

I'm happy this story intrigued you! The positive comments on this story mean a lot, especially now -- writing has been rough for me lately because of college, but it'll get better. Thanks for leaving your thoughts!

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Review #4, by Courtney Dark 

9th November 2013:
Here I am again! I wonder if you're getting sick of me by now?

How do you have so many amazing ideas swimming around your head? Every single chapter of every single thing I've read by you has been amazing, and this was no exception! I think I'm just going to have to go down your author's page and read every single thing that you've ever written. Because I'm cool like that.

There was something about the flow and style of this chapter that just really amazed me. I can't quite put my finger on what it was, but I just really loved it! And the brief glimpses of all the characters we saw were just perfect!

And I don't know why (this is completely random, don't judge me!) but for some reason the bit with Sirius standing up on his tiptoes struck me as so JK Rowling that I was for a moment quite bewildered.

I am now realizing that this is a really weird review, BUT THAT'S OKAY!

Anyway, to sum up, I really enjoyed this chapter!


Author's Response: I'm never sick of you! Even though it's been almost two years since you left this review, it brought a smile to my face nevertheless. Also I'm about to cry from your kind words (they're coming at a really crucial point in my life) but it means a lot to me that you enjoyed my first stab at a legit mystery!

Also: Something I wrote struck you as Rowling-ish? Compliment of the century! ♥

Thank you for reviewing -- you're very lovely!

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Review #5, by DarknessIsMyOnlyFriend 

20th July 2013:
The first part made me very curious to read on :)
It raised questions and answered very little. I love that in a story. And it worked with your mystery theme!

I also really like your description of the marauders! They are very different indeed. And you were very accurate I think. That is how I picture their morning rituals anyway. And it's good you emtnion that James is not often this pensive, since I too think it would only happen every once in a while.

Despite the more vague start of the story, you took your time getting the story going by the time you went to James' point of view. This was good thing. The tone was very different because of it, but a well established story just works better.

I'm glad you made Lily believe James rather quickly. He was a bit on the nutty side, but he really liked her. That could not have gone right past her. He wouldn't do this. Although I sometimes wonder if I romanticize the boys a little too much. It was said in the books that they could be cruel.
Still, I doubt he would be cruel to Lily.
But I could not imagine who would I liked figuring that out. And I wonder if the writer of the letter is speaking of Asher or not.

To make a long story short: this chapter really set a tone. It created an atmosphere that is just right for a mystery story. It gave a little information and raised more questions. Always a good thing!
I am curious!

What you could perhaps do, to enhance the fact that the first part of the story is separate from the second part, is using italics. It would make a more clear separation. However this is only a suggestion, as the * works as a separation as well! So doing this would make it double.

There was a typo in the description for Peter. "He might get burn his nose..." I'm assuming 'get' wasn't really part of the sentence.

Author's Response: I'm very glad the beginning of the story read so mysteriously to you! In a mystery, that certainly is a good thing. ;) I've done a lot of Marauders writing (as in over 300k over three novels, in addition to various one-shots), and so I've got a lot of headcanon where they're concerned... which is probably why it took so long to establish the rest of the chapter. Once I start writing them, it's just really hard to stop!

I think I see Lily different from a lot of other Marauders writers -- and I kind of feel like she liked him long before she agreed to date him (dating, falling in love with, and getting engaged to someone in a year seems really implausible to me).

I've already fixed that typo, but thank you for pointing it out! :) I love astute readers. And thank you for being willing to review this for me, too -- I really do appreciate it! ♥

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Review #6, by MidnightBlue_x 

28th June 2013:
You know what's ridiculous? Here I am, just casually searching through stories which contain Sirius Black, as I do. And I see this, this right here! A story which is marked as mystery and has this amazingly beautiful banner. As usual, I don't pay much attention to the author. Because who needs to when you see a story like that?

Then I starting reading...I think to myself 'This writing style seems familiar- I really, really like it' and so up I scroll to see who the author is and then I see YOU! YOU! My beautiful, amazing, brilliant friend who I am insanely jealous of! HOW COULD YOU DO THIS TO ME? Don't you know how much pain you cause me every time I discover a new story of yours? Honestly Miss Rachel, I think sometimes you just do this to hurt me!

I simply demand that you stop it. Stop being such an amazing author for once in your life and give the rest of us a chance! Do you hear me?

xx Ely

P.S. Don't seriously stop. I will actually cry if you ever do.

Author's Response: I totally thought you knew about this story! And here I was, hiding Sirius from you. :) I'm glad that you enjoyed it, Ely, and that you took the time to review this for me! It was just what I needed after that rough writing night, and I really do appreciate your doing it, more than words can say.

I'm never going to stop -- you can nearly guarantee it. ♥ I'll always be writing something, HPFF or original fiction or something else entirely!

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Review #7, by MadiMalfoy 

20th June 2013:
Hey there, here's your review as requested! :)

So just to warn you, I was listening (and still am) to this really awesome track on Tumblr that fits like EVERYTHING ever imagined and so it really made this seem super dark and mysterious! Which is what you're going for, yes? From the moment I began reading this, I was pulled in. The obscurity of who the person is writing the letter makes it more intriguing and makes us want to unravel the mystery behind who the character is and why they're sending such a hurtful letter to Lily Evans.

I don't see any grammar or spelling mistakes whatsoever, so that is fantastic! You are very good with varying sentences and syntax to keep it interesting and getting the point across with the right terms. Your characterization of James and Lily is spot on and feels like it's just like they would've been in their school years. The little blurbs about the remaining Marauders were perfect too!

As a whole, a phenomenal start to what will definitely be a spectacular mystery story! I hope to read on and please feel free to re-request! :) xx

Author's Response: Thank you for being willing to do this for me! :) And thank you for showing me that Tumblr track as well. I bookmarked it, just to have around for writing the last two chapters of this story. You never know! My intention was definitely to make the first section seem rather dark and mysterious, and of course I'd like to keep everything shrouded in a mystery-type air until I'm ready to expose everything. Which will be soon -- I promise!

I take great care to make all my chapters as polished as possible, and it's lovely that you appreciate it. :) I've worked hard on my Marauders characterizations over the years, too (I wrote a whole trilogy around them, after all!), and they're very distinctive in my mind. Even after all this time, I'm just totally floored that people seem to think the way I write them makes sense and seems accurate. I love that! ♥ Thank you!

I will definitely be back to request from you again, and your review really did make me smile when I received it. :) Thank you for saying such awesome things!

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Review #8, by Lucille II 

20th June 2013:
I must say, it is kind of bizarre to read the Marauders in a setting where Beth Bridger isn't present. I honestly miss her here because I can feel the gaps where she fit in perfectly, playful and sensible and a good balance to the group. ~nostalgia~

Oh my god, it is apparent that this James is in dire need of a Beth to iron his head a little flatter. Looking around at his friends, marveling at how interesting/picturesque they all are, secretly hoping Peter will burn his nose on his coffee. I am getting the image of a James who sometimes takes time out of his day to kick back and admire how awesome it is to be James Potter. The idea makes me snort.

Ugh. You know, a lot of people give Lily grief for rebuffing James's advances for years, but it would be seriously embarrassing to have a guy call attention to you in a way that doesn't even come off as sincere half the time. Sometimes the way he flirts, he's doing it more to draw attention to himself and make himself look cool/confident rather than really trying to secure her affection. It's amazing he ever learned what the air outside of his own butt tasted like, if you'll pardon my saying so.


1.) Remus. He took forever to relay the news to his friends. He just sat there quietly, perhaps secretly soaking it all in while pretending to be reading. He knew something was wrong but didn't feel it imperative to inform his friends, particularly James, who made a fool out of himself.
2.) Bellatrix, purely because of the sentence structure which was short, jagged, and a bit insane.
3.) Regulus. Initiation? Trying to prove himself?
4.) Petunia. This one is tricky. I know whoever wrote the letter had to have been inside the school, and they used an inkwell and all, but I still think she could be good for it somehow.
5.) Sirius. He wants to scare Lily out of school so that he can have James all to himself.

From that list, I'm crossing off Bellatrix, who's a little more obvious because she's nuts. It wouldn't be Severus because he wouldn't call her that word. It could possibly be someone who's in love with James. Maybe it's even Marlene. OR it's James, who is actually a psychopath or has split personalities. OR, it was LILY, who is an attention-seeking psychopath?


What's fascinating is that in the beginning of the chapter, the person had a patient, sort of sadistic, elegant outlook. I glean calmness, calculation, assurance, extreme attention to detail - to the point of OCD, I think, because they had to reread those lines to make sure there wasn't anything in there that shouldn't be, and that the attitude was exactly right. It was methodical. Which tells me that the lines themselves were thought with great care, for specific purposes. They have a dark, childish, sloppy way to them that gets the point across very directly. It sounds almost like a nursery rhyme, or a spell. So the word choice differs greatly from the writer, or so it seems. They have a flair for the dramatic, but probably do not outwardly appear that way. And they would be a voyeur. Someone watching much, encouraging a little or not at all, and blending in. Cold, haughty, arrogant. Then Lily's name on the front is a third matter. It's different. It's hurried. But it must have purpose. The most obvious answer would be a Slytherin, so I don't think it will be. I think it will be a Gryffindor, or maybe someone possessed by Voldemort - maybe Lily is possessed by Voldemort.

THIS STORY IS GOING TO MAKE THE CONSPIRACY THEORIST IN ME WITHER UP AND DIE IN ANTICIPATION. MORE THEORIES COMING SOON. P.S. I am going to go pull up a list of characters who attended/worked at Hogwarts in this time frame.

Oh, and another mystery: Who am I? Answer: ~I am an enigma~

Author's Response: Ugh, why are you here. Didn't I just answer a review from you? I KID, I KID, YOU ARE TOO WONDERFUL TO ME LUCILLE. (Loose seal!) (Well, I've started off this response on a great foot.)

I'm reading this for literally the fifth or sixth time now, and I don't know whether I want to laugh or cry. I wanted to put Beth into this story SO much, and I should just make her a background character in future chapters because there is a distinctive hole in James's life when she's not there. (Note: Remind me of this idea.) James is bigheaded and egotistical and I love him 5ever, and I think this emotion is near-tears. Dang it. I MISS BETH, CAN I WRITE ABOUT HER ALWAYS.

Oh, wait, I can! Charlie/Katie forever!

I am mostly going to avoid discussing your list of suspects, because obviously I can't tell you whether anyone you listed was involved in George Asher's murder or not. OR whether any of them sent Lily's note. Or whether one person did both things. -ties you up in word knots- I am mostly just trying to mislead people in these responses. I am about 75% less mysterious than I appear. I WILL TELL YOU THAT YOU HAVE A BETTER CHANCE THAN NEARLY ANYONE TO FIGURE IT OUT.

Yup, I said it.

Oh God, this review sucks. I'll be sure to apologize for it later, I promise you. ♥ Mostly I am just beyond excited that a) you're still reviewing my stuff, b) you still can find the time to leave me such long and lovely reviews, and c) you're so invested in everything I write. How is that? You are magic and I am grateful for our friendship and your support forever.

I EAGERLY AWAIT MORE THEORIES FROM YOU. I will never tell you if you're right. ♥

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Review #9, by UnluckyStar57 

18th June 2013:
Oh no... Judging by the title and the already LOADED content of this chapter, this is going to be one heck of a murder mystery!!!

Your whole style for this chapter is really suspenseful and... creepy. Focusing on the hand at the beginning was a fantastic way to start the story off, as it just raised my suspicions of just who the hand could belong to. The firelight, the late night, the disorganized thoughts of the letter writer... Those all worked together to make me think that he is absolutely, no-holds-barred, one hundred percent crazy.

I enjoyed James' study of his friends. He's definitely a different James than I usually see. He seems to be more mature, more pensive, except of course, when Sirius is making breakfast sandwiches. You've taken the Marauders, a group that is often written about in Harry Potter fanfiction, and you've made them your own. It's really great to see Peter with his own personality, even if that personality does have an inclination for being a bit stupid at breakfast. After all, he was up late, reading, which would make anyone nod off in the morning. Instead of an air of idiocy, which people give him quite often, as I'm sure you've seen, in this story, he's got some substance. I like that a lot. :)

Lily is a different Lily than I usually see, too, which is refreshing and perfect for this story. After all, if she was always in a snit with James in this universe, she would never ever let him see the letter. She would fly about in a rage and maybe the mystery would never get solved. But here, she has more gravity than she usually would. She actually believed James when he told her that he would never call her such a nasty word, and she took his offer of help like a mature person. You know, I would be really okay if they didn't fall in love in this story, because it seems like they've got a pretty good rapport going on right now. However, if they DO fall in love, I'm okay with that, too. :)

And what can I say about the note...? The note was just as creepy, if not more, than the person who wrote it. It was clearly the mark of an insane person, and it. Was. So. Scary. After I read it, I turned around to check behind me and make sure that there wasn't somebody with a knife waiting to stab me! (I may or may not be a little paranoid...) The accompanying hullabaloo of the students being ushered back to their common rooms just served to show that something is fatally wrong at Hogwarts. I don't know who George Asher is, but I'm sure that he was a Muggle-born, and whoever wrote the note (or an accomplice) killed him in cold blood.

Geez, you're such a brilliant writer! I really wish I could say that I had some constructive criticism for you that would make this review worth reading, but... I don't. All I can do is gush about how terrifying it is, and anticipate the next chapter with wide-eyed fear.

PLEASE update this as soon as possible. I MUST find out what happens!


Author's Response: -bites nails- I HOPE THIS IS A GOOD MYSTERY. I've never written a full-out mystery story before, and going through and reading everyone's theories and plotting the story out on my own, I remember why! And there was a definitely intended disparity between the two sections, which I'm so glad so many people picked up on. I've said it in the past -- I have a thing for hands. I notice them on people in real life, and subsequently they pop up in my writing!

I think I somehow tend to write both Lily and the Marauders differently than a lot of people see them, and I hope it doesn't sound too egotistical to say so. The timing of this story is crucial to their behaviors, too; it's sixth year, and I think James would be a bit more mature around this time, while Lily would be warming up to him slightly (the idea that she just magically fell in love with him and agreed to marry him in one year always seemed a bit absurd to me). I wrote a long analysis of Lily in particular in response to academica's review, if you wanted to read that!

And I just love writing the Marauders in general. ♥ They're essentially extensions of how I wrote them in the Marauders trilogy I just finished, which made me miss writing those books terribly, but they all formed distinctively in my mind during that writing process. I'm so pleased you seemed to enjoy them so much! ♥

You'll find out a touch more about George Asher in the second chapter, and more about the note in both the second and the third. :) Thank you so much for being willing to review this for me, too!! You are absolutely much too kind, and I don't deserve such lofty praise.

I'm updating tomorrow, and I hope you come back and check out more of the story then! ♥

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Review #10, by Cassius Alcinder 

17th June 2013:
Thanks for pointing me in the right direction for review tag!

The descriptions in the opening section were so effective at setting a tone for the story. It was so creepy, and had the same kind if feel as an Edgar Allen Poe story. Like seriously, there were chills.

Then there was a transition from the scary to the mundane as we joined the Marauders for breakfast. You did a good job at capturing the nuances of their characters, and especially showing that while James likes to joke around, he also has a very serious protective side when somebody he cares about is in danger.

And the ending was pretty much the perfect cliffhanger, and it kind of had an Agatha Christie type feel to it.

I'm def looking forward to reading the rest!

Author's Response: Thanks for taking me up on reviewing this! I'm really pleased you liked that opening section, too -- I concentrated especially on the descriptions, making them creepy enough to separate from James's section later on. You had me grinning like mad at the Poe reference; I adore Poe. ♥ And for as lighthearted as I try to write the Marauders, I do aim to make this story a bit creepy, so you've really boosted my confidence in that respect as well.

I adore writing about those boys, and this story was largely born from my mourning the end of the Marauders era trilogy I've been working on for nearly two years. ;) Is that sad? Maybe a little bit. They're just such a fun group, and I do think Marauders is my favorite era to write. James is also my favorite of the four to work on, which is largely one of the reasons he's the narrator of this first part (even though it also just makes the most sense). He's matured more than Sirius here, definitely, and I do think he has a more serious side; he can recognize the serious from what's more appropriate to joke about. (No puns intended in that last sentence!)

You've referenced two of my favorite mystery writers in one review! How can I ever, ever thank you for that?! Carolyn Keene and Agatha Christie drove my young reading tendencies, and being compared to Christie is one of the best things I've ever heard in a review.

Thank you so much for taking the time to leave this for me! I appreciated it so much -- I can't even tell you. :) You're awesome!

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Review #11, by academica 

16th June 2013:
I followed the bandwagon over here :D

Okay, this is AU, so all bets are off. I'm so intrigued to see what you make of this odd and fascinating premise! My personal theory is that someone is trying to frame Snape based on the Mudblood incident from canon. Perhaps he'll be a suspect if something terrible happens to poor Lily. At the same time, though, the movements you described in the first half of this chapter seem very Snapelike indeed. Maybe framing isn't necessary... ah, well, I'll hold my tongue and be patient, then.

For the most part, I love your characterization. The boys are perfect, especially James. I love this idea of him being a quiet observer, taking in little details like the ceiling and the behavior of his friends. It seems like this James--sixth year, I suppose?--has grown up a little, and it gives me hope because I believe that this James will protect Lily and treat this matter with the seriousness it deserves.

I hope you don't mind a teensy bit of critique, because I wasn't quite as certain about Lily here. Her entrance into the Hall and concerns about the note at first seemed just right, but then she seemed to recover a little too much when she found out that it wasn't James doing a prank. If someone had written something that serious about me and it wasn't an awful joke, I think I would feel more upset about it instead of calming down slightly because it implies that some stranger (or at least an enemy) really does want to hurt me. I know she takes her role as Prefect seriously, but she just kind of seemed to regain a sense of security and duty a little too easily for my taste. Does all that rambling make sense? Maybe she's just trying to put on a brave face and I failed to pick up on it. I could have grossly misinterpreted her behavior, but I thought I'd share my reaction to it anyway.

This is a lovely beginning and I'll try to keep up!


Author's Response: Hi, Amanda! How lovely to see you this way again. :) One of my favorite things about AU is that there really is no predictable path, and I hope you'll find that's the case here. The thing about this story is that it is going to be rather short -- only five chapters -- so you're going to find out the details pretty quickly. I'll reveal nothing!

I got really into writing the Marauders while writing the Beth Bridger trilogy, and basically all of their representations here are how I wrote them in that. I missed them very much once I got to the end of those. ♥ James is actually my favorite Marauder, I've come to find, and I'm so pleased my portrayal of him did justice in your own mind! He is a bit more mature here than most people paint him, and that's done intentionally. I see him as the glue that holds the boys together, the one who is the least extremist in personality. I'm not quite sure where that comes from, of course, but there it is.

As for Lily, I do see the points you're making, and I do acknowledge them! I think the thing about Lily is because we saw so very, very little of her in canon (which is arguably the same with James), everyone sort of has a different view to her. And it was always hard for me to write her as I saw her, mostly because I focused on the boys, not Lily, and no matter what she was to James, I don't consider her essential to the group of Marauders as a whole. What's important in this story is the time period it's being written in. I don't believe Lily fell in love with James in a year; I think it came about more gradually, and because she seems to hate him at the end of her fifth year at least, then the softening might naturally have come about in her sixth year. I intended for her to accuse him of the letter out of habit more than anything else, but she knows instinctively that James wouldn't ever send her a letter calling her a Mudblood. That's why she backs down so quickly and is willing to accept his help at all; I think the Lily you describe wouldn't have wanted him to have anything to do with it. I think it's just a difference in interpretation of her character. :)

Whew! That paragraph got away from me, didn't it? Sorry about that! Seriously, thank you for your review, and I do appreciate your opinion very much. ♥ I hope you'll be back to check out further chapters as well!

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Review #12, by The Misfit 

15th June 2013:
How do you do this, Rachel? Seriously, you just blow me away with your awesomeness ♥ I've heard about this story for the last couple of months now so when I saw it posted yesterday, I just couldn't help myself from clicking and reading :3 I'm trying to avoid Marauders at the moment, but this is AU which helps keep my headcanon intact - which brings me to why you're wonderful. I'm hooked on an AU fic. (I'm not sure if you remember, but I think I mentioned to you that AU fics and I didn't mesh well together.)

Anyway. I'll get to the review now :P I loved your description of the anonymous letter-sender; I could perfectly visualize the surroundings right down to the flickering candle, and your inclusion of his/her thought process was fabulous. ♥ (S)he obviously doesn't work well under pressure, or has a bad memory, because if I was planning to commit a series of murders I'd obsess over the smallest details and make sure everything was perfect, and your letter-writer's afterthought indicated otherwise. *lightbulb moment* Although, you could be trying to trick us and have the letter-writer deliberately use messier handwriting than normal for the envelope, so that it wouldn't be recognized instantly by passing Gryffindors in the common room because (s)he is a Gryffindor :3 Meep. I'm also making note of the fact that the letter-writer is right-handed here, so that I don't forget - it might be important in future chapters; it might not. I'm not taking the risk of forgetting! :P

Onwards to breakfast, and I know I've said this before, but your characterizations and descriptions of the Marauders are literally to die for. James is just so perfect - so indignant at the thought of someone sending nasty letters to Lily, and assuring her he would trace down the letter without knowing anything about it is just so James ♥ Sirius and his sandwich had me in stitches, too - his personality is absolutely spot on. I'm slightly disappointed Remus and Peter didn't have much of a role in this chapter, but this is a James/Lily fanfic, after all. I have to be honest with you, though - when I was reading the section where the Marauders are described, I was actually hoping for Beth to get mentioned - I know she was created for the Sneth trilogy but I miss her in this story, and I've read hundreds of Marauders fanfics over the years and never once felt that an OC was missing until now. (See what I mean about your talent being illegally good?) Random mention: I really like how you used "speared" to describe Remus putting a fork in a kipper, because spears are generally associated with hunters and Remus' werewolf form is a hunter... and here I am reading too much into things again. *ninja eyes*

I did notice one little minor typo: He might get burn his nose - I think you meant he might get to burn his nose? It's not a big deal, I just thought I'd mention it because otherwise, the grammar and spelling are perfect. ♥

Right. Theories. My first instinct is that there would be four murders - one for each mention of Mudblood in the second line, and that's what I'm sticking to until I have more information. I've also, during writing this review, considered that it might be Severus sending that letter to Lily, not as a threat but to warn her; however, he fears if he told her outright she might not believe him so he wrote it anonymously and make it look like a threat so Lily would take it seriously and look out for herself. Then again, this is AU, so for all we know Severus might hate Lily. *whimpers* I NEED MORE INFORMATION, RACHEL!

And I think I've written an entire essay (the character countdown isn't working for me at the moment) in this review, so I'm just going to sign off with a "this is fabulous, and I absolutely cannot wait for the next chapter" - because really, I can't. This story is just too good. ♥

Author's Response: -cackles- I'M SO GLAD YOU'RE HERE, KATIE. And no worries, because this is definitely an AU short story! I can't tell you specifically why, of course, but nothing is sacred. I do remember you telling me that you're a strict lover of canon, and it means even more to me now that you've left such a wonderful review on this first chapter!

The first section of the chapter, with the letter-sender, was very much supposed to be set apart from James's second half in language and detail, and it's so neat that everyone's seemed to make note of that difference. ♥ I'm so pleased you liked it! And it is a touch significant that the writer's handwriting went messy on the envelope, by the way.

I LOVE MY MARAUDERS SO MUCH. James is, I think, my favorite to write (followed really, really closely by Sirius), and it means a lot to me that you thought his characterization was on-point here. Your comment about including more Remus/Peter is duly noted, and they actually do make a larger appearance in chapter three! I became really used to leaving them out of the plot for "Breaking Even" plot purposes (there's a reason why they sort of stay in the background there), and sometimes I need to jerk away from the mindset. ;) And oh my gosh, it felt so darn weird not to include Beth in this scene. I missed her very much, way more than I anticipated. To know that you missed her too leaves me speechless. ♥ I have no words for how much that means to me.

-cackling again at all your theories- I WILL TELL YOU NOTHING. The next chapter should be up before too long, though! I'm almost writing chapter 3 at the moment, in fact. All will be revealed in time!

Thank you for a lovely review, Katie. I'm so pleased to have you reading something of mine again! You are too kind. ♥

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Review #13, by jack 

14th June 2013:
This is really good keep up the great work great great great great great great great

Author's Response: Thank you for taking the time to read and review this chapter! I'm very excited about this story, and I hope you continue to enjoy it. :) Already looking forward to hearing from you again! ♥

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Review #14, by Lady Asphodel 

14th June 2013:
Wow... this was great and really caught my interest. :D

I had no intention of reading it at first, I was just checking the link of the story from the UFG thread on TDA. But I have to admit the title and the summary were too luring for me to ignore. :P

Just to let you know, this is my first marauders fic, and I'm enjoying it so far. ^_^

I definitely look forward to your next update. :)


Author's Response: What a lovely surprise, seeing your name turn up here! I've definitely seen you crop up around TDA, but this was something new and nice. :D And I'm super excited to hear that the summary and title intrigued you enough to click on the story in the first place. That is, of course, the ultimate goal, and knowing that it worked with even one person means that I can check that off my list of accomplishments where this story's concerned!

I'm proud to be your first Marauders fic, too, and I hope you continue to enjoy. :) After spending nearly two full years writing almost nothing else, HPFF-wise, it's an era I've become really interested in writing more about. AU and Marauders are my two favorite things, and crossing them here has been awesome!

Thank you so much for taking the time to review, and I'd love to know what you think about the upcoming chapters, too. This meant a lot to me! ♥

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Review #15, by ValWitch21 

14th June 2013:

Oh my. I'm speechless -- I think the last opening chapter that had such a big impact on me was the first chapter of Break Out, which, incidentally, was your work as well.

The you're next, I'm assuming, is a death threat. After George Asher, Lily Evans. I haven't checked the genre of this story yet, so unless it's AU I think Severus is off the list.

Okay. The sender is obviously a perfectionnist, with the necessity to be crisp and perfect. For some reason, I think it's a woman, even though at first read I'd say she was a male (this sentence doesn't make much sense). But there's something -- that I can't put my finger on -- that makes me think it's a woman sending the letter.

I must say this, and I'm sorry, but I must: I got ITB feels for a moment. With the four boys all having breakfast at the Hogwarts table, I went zooming back to when I first read your story (can you believe it was more or less a year ago already/only?) and it just punched me in the feels.

But I'm going to stick to this, or try to at least. As always, your Sirius is perfect.

"You may not have any," he said, waving his fork at his breakfast sandwich, sending bits of egg scattering across the table. [...]

His friend sniggered and dropped a final piece of bacon atop his eggs, reaching now for the boiled tomatoes. "What have you done now?" he asked, popping one of them into his mouth and grinning around it, the juices dribbling out of the corners of his lips.

Young man, you are a pig at the breakfast table. Your mother would be appalled.

What I loved most of all about this is how badly I wanted to give Peter a hug. I know he's going to turn out bad, but you managed to make me forget about that all through this chapter, and I will never congratulate you enough for that.

Also, McGonagall -- well, she was absolutely perfect (as always).

Right, well now here I am shouting profanities at the screen because I am hooked to another of your fabulous stories. Thank goodness it's you and your fabulous updating skills, otherwise I'd die.

Ooh, and I've been meaning to ask: you mentioned at some point you might be writing a sequel to Leaping Obstacles, which I loved (and for which I cried, which never, ever, happens -- feel proud), is that confirmed?

Author's Response: Val! ♥ Oh, it is so very lovely to see your name cropping up on this story's reviews, and I'm so pleased that you're reviewing another story of mine again. I can't reveal anything about the sender or the letter itself (otherwise what sort of a mystery would it be?), but I do know the answers! And they shall be revealed in time, of course. And I'm not telling you which of your predictions, if any, are on point!

I had actually a lot of ITB feelings writing this first chapter, and even writing the subsequent chapter's like I've been doing. It feels so strange to be writing Marauders again when Beth isn't around. :( There's a very crucial piece of my personal puzzle missing!

I'm so glad you're enjoying my Sirius again, too! Toujours Padfoot's influence and appreciation of him has forever changed the way I view him, and I always have her in mind when the time comes to make him say things. He's become quite an endearing part of my fan fiction arsenal for all that! He is such a pig, but a wonderful pig, and that makes up for it. ♥ And I am SO pleased that you wanted to hug Peter, too! I have an affection for him in his school years; he was always just a few beats behind, and that's not an easy position to be in. As easy as it is to despise his adult actions, there are a lot of prejudices against his teenage self, and I like working to overcome a few of those.

THANK YOU FOR REVIEWING. You are too good to me! This was so nice, and I really can't wait to hear your opinion on future developments, too!

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Review #16, by patronus_charm 

14th June 2013:
Iím typing this review as fast as possible in the hope of getting the first one, so if it doesnít make any sense or is typo ridden apologises in advance, Rachel! I think this is your 40th story as well, so congrats for that :D

I adored the first section. A good old mystery always excites me and this one definitely has got me interested. At first, I have to admit that I thought it was from James but judging from the scene later on, Iím wrong in that matter and now Iím trying to think of people with white hands. I thought of Lucius considering the hair and all, but by canon terms he would have left.

One thing which I really loved in this chapter was your amazing description. You really showed things from a new perspective and it was wonderfully detailed at the same time. Like here ĎA white hand flashes through swathes of darkness and seizes the edge of the parchment.í It was lovely. The thing which made it effective was though it was amazing description it was also controlled description, and you didnít sacrifice the dialogue or action for it which was really great.

I love how you write the Marauders in Breaking Even, and I loved them again in here. I think it was the way you described the way they went about at breakfast which really made me love it. Their actions matched up with their personality brilliantly and I especially liked the one of Peter. You showed him in an unbiased why and I liked the idea of him being a reader as that role usually designated to Remus alone.

Poor old James! I couldnít help but feel bad for him when the others are all accusing him of sending that letter. I knew straight away that he would never do that to Lily, though I may have been a little biased there :P I think James is the best Marauder you write, even though the others are all brilliant like I just said, his characterisation is the one which shines for me here which is great because I love him ♥

That note was really haunting! I didnít really know what to expect when it said that Lily would be next, but the end bit really shocked me! I canít believe that thereís been a murder in Hogwarts and Iím eager to find out more about it. I loved the way James immediately volunteered to sort it all out for Lily despite not knowing the magnitude of it all!

Ah that was a fantastic start, Rachel! I canít wait to read on :D


Author's Response: Your reviews are quickly becoming the hardest things I have to respond to. YOU ARE TOO GOOD TO ME, KIANA. ♥ I am still laughing at your racing over here to be the first review!

I'm so, so glad you enjoyed this, mostly because I am very inexperienced at writing mystery stories, and somehow it's sort of a challenge to write them when you know the ending yourself. Or maybe it's just me? I do know who the letter is from, though, and I shall tell no one until the proper time. :) Expect the unexpected!

I'm so, so glad you liked the description, too. ♥ I wanted to make the first section different from the second in its tone, and that made the imagery come out a bit more thickly than if it had been James taking it in, you know? I am really pleased to know it wasn't overkill, too! I have been known to tilt one way or the other. ;)

MARAUDERS. Oh my goodness, I love writing them. And I love that you love the way I write them. And you know, I could just write in this era forever! These are essentially my Sneth Marauders, though, minus Beth, because they're too firmly ingrained in my head for me to write them any other way at this point. Oops. -squee forever that you think James is the best Marauder I write because he's my favorite one to write in general-

A murder! It has happened! And oh, more mystery-type things are to come, for sure. ;) Nothing is certain! (Now look what you've done. Your review has made me quite giddy, and I am overusing exclamation points. ♥)

THANK YOU FOR SUCH A WONDERFUL REVIEW. I am honored to have it be my first on this story! And I really, really hope you like where the rest of it goes, too!

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