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26 Reviews Found

Review #1, by Penelope Inkwell 

11th September 2015:
And a population who still insist on using inkwells and quills should really reevaluate their definition of 'quaint,' Tristan thought.
--*snaps of approval* Preach.

“Suctus Fumigant,” incanted Isobel, using her wand like hoover on the smoke in the air.
--I just really liked this image.

Ugh, Oliver was a real...well, I don't think I can say it here, can I? But what a jerk. Really, I'd have been annoyed with him, too. And sure, Tristan shouldn't have hexed him over an accident, maybe, but he was being super irritating, and it's Hogwarts. People get hexed worse ways over lesser things. Still, Oliver did always have a bit of a big head, and the Gryffindors always did have as much prejudice against the Slytherins as the Slytherins did against them, as far as I can tell. And he insulted Emily? What happened to chivalry, Oliver? Pull it together, Gryffinjerk! Of course, most of the Slytherins so far seem pretty unsavory, as well.

I mean, generally I love Oliver, but he can be more than a bit full of himself, to the point of...extreme irritation.

Good on Tristan, though, for being a good enough sport to concede that the Gryffindor Seeker was a good surprise, after all.

Aw. I do feel bad for Laurel, and for Isobel as well--their parents are far too intense. But I'm still quite worried about her overuse of the Cheering Charm. That's bound to cause problems.

Oh, and I LOVE when characters' wands reflect their personalities! That's a great touch!


Author's Response: Hee, all credit for that line goes to the amazing marauderfan :) She said that in a review and I just HAD to include it!

Yayayay I liked that image too!

I think both Tristan and Oliver are a bit in the wrong here--in this situation, my sympathy lies with the geranium (TRISTAN TOTALLY DIDN'T NEED TO KILL IT! HE KILLED IT!) But yeah, it was really fun showing another POV of Wood. Like, I really don't hate him or anything, but there are bits about him in canon that could easily be quite obnoxious in various circumstances. And yeah, writing the Gryffindor/Slytherin rivalry from the Slytherin perspective was SUPER fun!

Working on the wands was SUPER cool, because my first instincts for each of them ended up being perfect! Like, I checked all the various woods and everything, and then ended up using the thing I'd first thought of because it was perfect!


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Review #2, by HeyMrsPotter 

11th September 2015:
“There are only two types of jobs a wizard can have,” said Tristan, licking the adhesive strip on a rizla. “In the Ministry, or tangential to the Ministry.” I think you just summed up the entire adult wizarding world LOL!!

Also, YES TO SPROUT! I know she wasn't being biased like Snape, but still, GO TEAM HUFFLEPUFF.

I really love how well you do the 'teenage' thing. They all have that edge of melodrama and woe is me about things, and exaggerate injustices like losing house points. It feels really realistic of a group of teenagers.


Author's Response: For a lot of this story I totally used various commentary I'd seen/heard about the Wizarding world, so like, rather than see it as some sort of flaw with JKR's writing I wanted be like "yup, that's what it's like. Let's talk about it."

SPROUT! She really surprised me in this story, because I ended up LOVING writing her :)

So glad you think the teenage-ness is on point! That was definitely really important to me!


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Review #3, by Unicorn_Charm 

16th August 2015:

Gah! More love for this wonderful, amazing, spectacular story you have created here!! I just want to run around like a madwoman and shout in the streets that everyone must read this story immediately, regardless if they're a Harry Potter fan or not.

The angst is strong in this one. I felt myself becoming more and more angsty and apathetic while reading this chapter. His emotions - or lack of, just seemed to float off my screen and into my being. I need to go light a candle and listen to some Radiohead while chain smoking or something lol. But honestly, I love it! As a product of the 90's and a member of the "whatever" generation, I so appreciate the tone of this and everything about it. Just such great work!

Wood was a jerk. Flat out jerk. Meathead, jock, popular, expletive, jerk. I really loved seeing him from a Slytherin's POV, because it all seems totally plausible. He was the captain of the team, and he was all about Quidditch and I could totally imagine him being a bully to people in Slytherin. I mean, the Slytherins bullied Harry, why wouldn't it be the other way around. Fred and George's reactions to what happened were just perfect though. I so laughed out loud while reading it, because it was so them. You have a great command of their characters.

I really like Tristen. A lot. Yeah, he's totally a typical "everything sucks" whiny teen, but he is himself and doesn't care what others think. I really respect that in a house full of blood status crazy purebloods, he flat out was like, "yeah, I'm a Mudblood, so what?" Not in those exact words, but you know. I'm here like, "Yeah! You go Tristen! Tell them what's up."

The little details again were just incredible! You can really tell that you've done your research for this story and what a massive Potter-head you are. The fact that this is so cannon compliant, yet so original at the same time... It's just mind blowing. I'm totally blown away. It's engaging, funny, interesting, has such great imagery and detail. I don't even know what else to say besides, you're a genius!

Can't wait to keep going!! LOVE it!!! (If you couldn't tell) ♥

Hugs and love,

Author's Response: MEG!!

*flaps arms around*

I'm SO glad you thought that the characters fit the era. I was only a wee one in 91-92, but I have some older friends that were teens in the 90s and I'm generally interested in, like, the history of culture and teenage movements over time and stuff, so I really wanted this to be a very 90s-y story. It's weird because I think the 90s were a decade very much dominated by the "20-somethings" of Gen X, and the teenage experience got relatively less attention compared to previous decades (like, if you look up "90s teen movies" online, they're almost all from 1999 and more part of the early 2000s Teen Movie boom. Most youth-culture movies in the 90s focused on people in their 20s). Which I also think sort of informed that experience, so a lot of teenagers sort of wanted to be older. BUT I'M RAMBLING.

I did really want to show another side of Wood, because I do think it was THERE in canon, just that Harry only ever interacted with him in certain contexts and there was an age-difference at play. Though to be fair, Tristan DID start it. And his lashing out was DEFINITELY an overreaction (I mean, HE KILLED HIS GERANIUM, that was SO un-called for). And yeah, then Wood and co. retalliated too hard, which I think had a lot to do with just general prejudice against Slytherin and misjudging Tristan.

And YEE I'm so glad you like the Twins! They are VERY intimidating characters to write, because they're SO fabulous and wonderful in canon. It's almost a bit presumptive to TRY and write them in the Hogwarts era. It's also weird because I'm trying to keep them the same as canon while also showing them from another POV (where the age differences are reversed). So WOO! Very relieved you dig all that!


Oh man, whilst writing this I had like 10 tabs that just LIVED at the top of my browser. And even though I did a ton of research while planning the story, I did EVEN MORE for each chapter. Like, I even had a London Underground map from 1992 and almanac info about which lines were down when, and explored archival maps of Vauxhall, and researched legislation and BLAGH. (Heh, I also was gonna have Laurel wear a "scrunchie" but then found out that the word "scrunchie" hadn't come into common usage yet). It was all a bit absurd :P


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Review #4, by TreacleTart 

12th August 2015:
Hey Roisin!

Back for another Gryffindor Red vs. Gold Review! Just in case you forgot, go team red!

Ah. Tristan, so angsty, but then again, I suppose he is a teenager after all. I really love his observations about how if you're magical and you go to Hogwarts it's just assumed that you want to give up the muggle world. It would be pretty tough to return to muggle society and find a job with only basic education.

Man there are a ton of drug references in this. Do these kids do anything but smoke? I mean I know it's highschool and all, but I'm surprised they aren't floating away yet.

I like that you haven't portrayed Wood as the golden boy that he is in cannon. I thought his overly zealous personality was a bit annoying as well, so it's nice to see that reflected in this just a little bit. And Wood was definitely a bit of a jerk attacking Tristan like that. I mean really, did he need to bring three other people along to do it? They couldn't handle it one on one?

As always, your writing was lovely. I'll be back for more soon.


Author's Response: It's something that develops as the story progresses, but Tristan was designed to be something of the Anti-Potter. Like, a mirror image: identical yet reversed. Part of the reason for that is that JKR came up with the character Harry first and the wizarding world was invented after, around him. So this universe literally revolves around Harry. I was curious how someone else might fare, and what they would make of it. Someone who it wasn't custom-tailored to fit.

I like your comment about being surprised that they aren't floating away. As you know from reading further, they do begin to soon.

I do rather still like Wood as a character, but you're right that he has a lot of qualities that could be annoying in various contexts (and would especially irritate someone like Tristan). But I wouldn't say he's ENTIRELY at fault. Tristan definitely over-reacted earlier when he hexed him (AND THE GERANIUM. That's the thing that made me mad at him, really. HE KILLED THE GERANIUM).


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Review #5, by wolfgirl17 

25th March 2015:
Hiya Roisin!

Ellie here with your requested review. Finally. Sorry it's taken me so long. have no excuse beyond the fact that I'm a lazy sod. Well, that and the fact that I've been updating my own fics like crazy while the queue has been so short.

Anyway, on to the story.

As always, I love your writing. You just have this way of making everything so realistic and enjoyable to read. I loved the bit about hitting Snape right in the ethics. It was great. You've got this way of writing too that really speaks to the reader, it's occasionally abrupt, but I kind of like that in a fic. I like it when the story I'm reading flows so smoothly and yet every now and then hits me with something unexpected, like an unexpected word for the context that still makes sense but expands the vocabulary.

I was kind of shocked by Wood's behavior in this. It just seems so unexpected from him when not related to Quidditch.

The way you've thrown in the already brimming blood purity really makes this fic more real and makes it hit home better. You give us all a really good look into the world of what was happening while Harry was too young to really know about it yet.

You've created a masterpiece and I enjoy every moment. As always, feel free to re-request with more. I love your work. It's always such a delight to read with all this fantastic imagery and descriptive language and perfect spelling/grammar.

It's a breath of fresh air that always makes me feel more hopeful regarding the continued existence of people who know how to spell and use grammar correctly and don't feel the need to butcher things with text talk.

You're awesome. Everyone knows it. ;)

xx-Ellie (Wolfgirl17)

Author's Response: Oh YOU MAKE ME FEEL SO NICE *flails*

Your comment about 'abrupt'ness is an interesting one. It's not something I've heard before, and it's always cool to see what other people make of stuff like style. Like, I still can't tell if I have one, since I'm the one doing it.

I hope the Wood thing didn't seem OOC for you--I knew I was extrapolating a bit, but I wanted to try something new with his character. The scene is very much from Tristan's perspective and a bit biased towards him, but Oliver isn't all bad. He continues to crop up.

I definitely labored over precision in the writing, and did tons of edits to keep the spelling and grammar and all on point, so I'm really glad you appreciate that!

Thank you so much for the kind word :D


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Review #6, by UnluckyStar57 

18th February 2015:
OH MY GOSH, I am actual trash for leaving this story unread for two whole months. TWO WHOLE MONTHS.

Ugh, and it's such a pity that I'm such a trashcan, because I love this story so much, really I do. There are so many things...

First of all: LOVE the further characterization of Tristan's friends. Emily is definitely an interesting character and I can't wait to see more of her. So righteously angry, yet so nice that she can't really express it like someone else might. And in this chapter, I'm really seeing how everyone's parentage sort of defines what people expect of them at Hogwarts, even though their perceptions rarely match up with the reality (especially in the case of the Hex Heads).

Tristan becomes more complex with every chapter, and I love it. He's caught in such a struggle--between being a Slytherin, but having a Muggle parent and a Muggleborn mother, and having friends from other Houses, and identifying as a Muggleborn even though he could identify as halfblood if he chose... It's all building up, and if this is angsty for him, I would hate to see what SUPER angsty looks like. Poor guy. Here, you really show how he's the victim of his own circumstances--he doesn't like his Housemates, but he hates Oliver Wood and most Gryffindors. So people assume things about him that aren't true, and he just isn't going to have that. It really fits in with the 90s vibe that the rest of the story puts off. (I mean, I wasn't really part of 90s culture because I was a small child when 2000 rolled around, but I can assume...) Tristan is struggling to reconcile himself with his identity, and that is some hard stuff right there. But he also likes being the pariah, so that makes it extra cool when he tells Reece off.

The idea of the Weasley twins being Hex Heads is more appealing every time I see them in this story. The only way we see them interacting with Wood is through Harry's naive eyes (in the books), so I can totally believe it that they would have a bit of anger reserved for their pompous Quidditch captain--cuz at the heart of it all, they're little rebels and they need someone to rebel against. (Even if it's just Oliver and they like to get on his nerves a lot.)

Speaking of Oliver, THIS CHARACTERIZATION THOUGH. A++, and that's no lie. He's so glorified in fanfiction that it is extremely refreshing to see this portrayal--Oliver as a bully, as an egomaniac, as an obsessive zealot. Like, the boy is MARRIED to Quidditch. That isn't very good, especially since he knows he's good at it and that's earned him a lot of fans over the years. His confrontation with Tristan... just UGH. I mean, I'm always down for a cutesy little Oliver/OC fic, but after reading this incarnation of Oliver, I'm like, "Nah, son. Not today." Thank you for showing a side of this character that is maybe more honest than normal. (Of course, this story is heavily centered on Tristan, so it might be a bit biased, but I still dig it.)

Magic beyond all we do here... Darn it, Weasleys, you're too clever. Again, the drugs and addicting behaviors are there, but you aren't glorifying them. These kids are doing these illegal things because it's an escape from their less-than-awesome realities, and there is no glorification in that. It's a way to cope, and I think you showed that very well. Also, it's a way to let off steam, and they're 90s teenagers. They kind of need it...

One grammar thing, because I had to have something, y'know?

"They usually found him entertaining, but when high, the little knight tended to freak Tristan out."~Sorry, but this made it sound like Sir Cadogan was the one who was high. I know that you meant Tristan, but the wording was just a bit off.

...And that's all I have for criticism/correction/making it better. In general, I love the amount of thought you put into this. I love that you really gave a lot of thought to what Tristan's wand is like, and how the "less important" characters are getting highlighted and gaining backstories as the story progresses. It's really, really brilliant, and I hope I can be back sooner rather than later to review chapter five.

Thanks so much for requesting again, and I'm sorry that I'm such trash for waiting this long to review! ♥


Author's Response: No worries, it's taken me FOREVER to reply to this, so I'm guilty as well!

Ooh, I'm really glad you mentioned the stuff about parentage! I put a weird amount of thought into all their families and backstories, and there's a ton of stuff I worked out that never even gets mentioned in the story. But yes, there is much family stuff in this story :)

Haha, yeah Tristan has a pretty high base-level of angst, partially because of those reasons you mentioned. Throw in some specific incidents to deal with and the angst level goes through the roof! And I'm really glad you see some of the problems with his character. Like, I want people to identify and like the MCs, but they're still pretty complicated, and certainly have flaws. (In fact, there are times when they can be downright obnoxioius!)

I wouldn't call the Twins Hex Heads, since they don't use charms recreationally, but I figure you use that term because the actual one probs isn't TOS complaint for a review ;) But yes, I liked the idea that they would get up to more shenanigans than young Potter truly realized. And I remembered a few incidents of them taking the mickey out of Oliver, so that was fun to play with!

Bahahaha! I'm sosososo glad people have responded well to this characterization of Oliver! I mean, I DO like him, but I needed someone to kind of antagonize Tristan, and those elements to his personality are definitely THERE in canon. Mostly though, I just think he's kind of young and hotheaded.

I'm really glad you didn't think the substance stuff was glorified! I wanted to have that be in the story, because it IS realistic if you're writing about teenagers (certainly not ALL, but MANY). I wanted it to kind of just BE, and sort of reserve any judgements of my own, because I trust readers to make their own analysis. But it was tricky to show how THEY think it's cool, without actually making it seem cool. But it seems to be working out!

Ooh, thank you for pointing out that grammar thing, I will certainly adjust it. And no worries about taking a long time, this review was fantastic and totally worth whatever wait!


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Review #7, by Pixileanin 

29th January 2015:
So I was jotting down some notes while reading Chapters 3 and 4, so here they are, hopefully in chronological order.

Oh dear. What is up with Tristan and the name "Longbottom"?

The whole idea of notes between Houses by owl was a fantastic idea. And yeah, I am wondering how Tristan's magic owl manages to get into the Slytherin boys' dorm. But yeah. Magic. So... The notes themselves hold an undercurrent of affection that I love. It's so subtle, but it's there. I hope something comes of that.

Ahhh, "Super Baby Harry Potter" cracked me up. I wonder if they're going to dis him through the entire story. Hahaha!

This: "I suspect they might have distilled you as a person in order to make it." Emily's observations on Nirvana and Tristan. I remember this. Psychoanalysis through lyrics. Seemed so relevant and true at the time.

Also, Tristan and "R". Secrets. And it's offensive to him too. Mysterious.

Uh oh. Emily's detail-oriented skills give Slytherin points. I smiled at that. I'm not sure how Emily feels about this. Oh, wait. Here it comes.

She's mad. And rightly so.

You have really interesting commentary through Tristan's eyes on the Slytherin/Muggle thing and where he fits into the dynamic of Hogwarts - it's like he doesn't want to relate to them - how he straddles both worlds but wants none of what he's been sorted into. I'm sure you're going to use that later on. Can't wait to see where that leads! He's sort of like this anti-Harry in all aspects. Bravo for such a character!

"And a population who still insist on using inkwells and quills should really reevaluate their definition of quaint."

Indeed. I also want to mention how much I appreciated you bringing in Dumbledore's quote about music, and how you just ran with it in your story. It works on several levels. Cool!

You keep us connected to canon by this string that weaves throughout these words. The bits about Quirrel, the references to what Harry's up to, and all the background noise that was from the books. I love the distinct ways that it's still Hogwarts and how you've built up your world so this story could only happen here, all the while giving it a strong, subversive feel through the characters, particularly Tristan in this case.

Tristan's thoughts are clear when he wants them to be. He's avoiding this big "thing" in his mind that seems to plague him. His thoughts on Emily, not deserving her concern - so much self-loathing. Where is it coming from?? *bursts with curiosity*

Fred and George, I can't help but love how they brighten up the scene with their own flagrant subversive natures.

You know what? Tristan surprised me with his helpfulness towards Sprout in the after. It speaks to his character that he's not altogether uncaring, not completely unsalveagable... or maybe that trip to Hogsmeade is really THAT important to him that he can't blow his chance to duck out.

Ahh, the Slytherin lineage discussion ensues. I can see why Tristan wants to avoid this.

I'm sorry that this was an incoherent jumble of thoughts that I'm trying to pass off as a review, but honestly, what else can I say except I'm enjoying this, the references are spot on, the age-specific thoughts are incredibly relatable, and the writing is tight and engaging.

Oh wait. There's more!

Author's Response: Yay, another response I can do!

I remember being a teenager and having email convos that ended up stretching longer and longer, and really wanted to convey that here. And haha--yes, I realized there was an issue with how the owl would access the slytherin dorms, and decided to just turn it into a silly joke by calling attention to it rather than offering up a hand-wave explainer. Because yeah: magic.

In canon we obv really only see Harry's fame through his experience, so I liked the idea of exploring how other people would interact with his reputation. Like, thinking of him more as an object and idea than a person.

Oh man, music takes on SUCH emotional importance to teenagers, and I super remember dissecting song lyrics as if they would reveal things about the world. Or using music as a guide and touchstone for understanding things.

Anti-Harry! Have I mentioned that to you? Because that's something I've said a LOT of this story, that Tristan was intentionally designed as the Anti-Potter. And YES about your comment about straddling two worlds yet fitting into neither.

Bahahaha--the Dumbledore quote appropriation. I was pretty pleased with that one ;)

Showing another possible side to Hogwarts and the experience there was a big motivation for this story. I figured that Harry and the trio were so busy Fighting Evil that they never really had time to experience other teenage realities, but wanted to see how those tropes played out within the Hogwarts context.

I do think part of his helpfulness was just wanting to dawdle long enough that Wood and the others would be long-gone by the time he left. Adding the that, kind of maybe wanting to redeem himself a little bit, even if he didn't totally admit that to himself.

Your reviews are so very heartening! Thank you so much for offering such incisive and interesting feedback!


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Review #8, by BellaLestrange87 

26th January 2015:
Hi Roisin! I'm back!

I love how Emily doesn't take Snape's housist (is that a word? I don't think so. But you probably know what I mean.) attitude lying down. I know that the Hufflepuff stereotype (which we all try and look past, with varying degrees of success) makes me think of everyone in that house as loving and kind and caring without any malice whatsoever. I love how you turned that on its head.

I think you have a typo here - Many might describe Emily as 'mousy,' what with her pointed noise and gentle nature, but Tristan knew her to posess a great depth of feeling. It's 'possess'. (At least I think it is..)

It's nice to see that I'm not the only one who gets severely distracted when doing work. The last time I tried to do work with my friends we spent 45 minutes off topic, gave up after an hour and decided to do it individually.

I don't think this really is an issue but you might want to add 'year' to the end of this sentence here - They’d discovered this private corner of the castle late in their second. And yes! You're mentioning Sir Cadogan! He always made me laugh with his silly lines in PoA.

Tristan says here that he hates being confined. I think that says something about his character. I'm not sure exactly what, but I think there's something.

You missed a word here - So far, she had proved to be far more competent professor than "Squirrel." "She had proved to be a far more comptent professor" is probably what you meant. Although, considering I forget words a lot, and sometimes have to massively edit pre-queue-submission, I don't really think I can talk.

Love their nickname for Quirrell. "Squirrel." Bahahahaha. And the fact that he thinks the stammer comes from having to teach Tristan (although, since we've only seen him in Potions, he could be partially right)!

I love how Tristan is far more objective about the wizarding world than many canon characters are. He's right: the wizarding world is so far behind the muggles in terms of technology that the muggles could use the term quaint to describe THEM. And I love how Professor Burbage wants to try and reinvent the Muggle Studies course. If she succeeded (or not), than that could be part of the reason why Voldemort killed her in Deathly Hallows.

It's nice that somebody pointed out just how many jobs in the wizarding world are connected to the Ministry. It's rather unlike muggle life, where most people work for the private sector and it's only a small percent who are government-employed.

Again, I love that you're not keeping Fred and George hanging around with the younger kids. And "vee haff our vays" sounds like a pre-Krum-era Krum imitation. Are they following the Bulgarian seeker already?

You have an extra word here - He had nothing personal against Wood, aside from general a annoyance with the loudness and self-satisfaction Tristan observed in most Quidditch players—Gryffindor players especially. - aside from general annoyance

So that's how word of Harry's being Seeker got out! I remember Wood telling Harry that he was going to be the secret weapon for their match against Slytherin. I wonder if he realizes that you can't exactly have a secret weapon and go shouting your mouth off in front of the house you're supposed to use it against. Idiot.

I wonder if Sprout can tell that Tristan is despondent and wants to help. And I think it makes perfect sense that the Hufflepuff - again with the house stereotypes here - Head of House acts as the informal guidance counselor.

In the books, the Slytherins are almost always the ones who take a bullying role. It's a nice change of scene to see a Gryffindor, and one we know, step into those shoes instead. Of course, I had always hoped Wood was better than that, but.

Fred and George poke so much fun at Oliver in the books that of course they would say that! I think you might want to edit this, though - Be sure and teach me it some time,” George added. - and change it to "Be sure to teach me it some time".

I like how Tristan, even though he did hex Oliver, wants nothing to do with the rest of his house's shenanigans. He may do drugs - which, although I don't like the practice, may or may not be a bad thing - but he doesn't bully people for fun.

Looks like Draco, Troll A (Goyle) and Troll B (Crabbe) have already found an older Slytherin to learn some tricks from. “We were just discussing lineages,” - You might want to change that comma to a period.

I wonder how Reece will react to the news that Tristan's muggle-born (if that's what he'd be classified as). I did notice that he used the term "Mudblood" though, and I'm wondering if he's just trying to avoid Slytherins wanting him to participate, or if he genuinely does feel that way.

In your bolded Author's Note, you have a typo - it's "reevaluating", not "reevaulating".

Another great chapter!


Author's Response: Hello! Thank you SO much for this amazing review, and I'm SO sorry I took so long to reply! Replying to this is really kind of a treat for me, so I used it as a reward for once I got a bunch of other stuff done. It took me so long to do that stuff!

Haha, the Emily thing was kind of inspired by a friend of mine, who's a totally sweet and kind person. On the rare occasion she gets angry, it's kind of the cutest and best thing ever! And YES, even Nice people get stroppy sometimes! Especially if they have their reasons.

Oh yes, the distracted homeworking involved MUCH of me channeling my High School experiences. I got way better at it in college, though!

Ooh, I'm glad you pointed out Tristan's thing with confinement. Yes yes, well spotted. I will say nothing more on that for now!

A lot of these examinations of the wizarding world came out of various comments I've read online. Like, jokey paradies and the such. Rather than treating it like a flaw of the story, I wanted to say YES that it their world, and YES, maybe some people have problems with it. The whole thing with Muggle Studies was me sort of treating it as an analogue for various courses I was taking at the time (largely to do with colonialism). To me, the best thing about Potter is how we can use these fictional fantastic things as a metaphor for real life sociopolitical issues.

I just LOVED writing Fred and George. It almost felt like they wrote themselves, like, just because I know them so well. I wanted them to hang out as much as is realistic (since they're younger), but yeah, they might have had a bit more going on than Harry ever realized ;)

Oh yes, the secret seeker thing! Basically, I got really excited about ANY unanswered question in canon (like, 'oh, some rumour got spread'), and used that as an opening for inserting my OCs into the mix.

Yeah, I figured there had to be some sort of Guidance Counselor, and Sprout seemed best suited for the job. I also liked that I could make her a bigger part of the story, because she's a cool character. But she usually gets kind of overshadowed by McGonnagall and Dumbledore. (Also, I definitely think she could tell Tristan was despondent).

Arguably, Tristan is kind of being a bully. Like, Wood knocked into his table by accident, and Tristan was the one who hexed him (AND THE GERANIUM). But, since we're seeing it from Tristan's perspective, we're sympathetic to him. (But the geranium thing was SO uncalled for). And I don't think Wood is really a bad guy--he's just young, and can get a little overzealous about things. From his perspective, Tristan attacked him for no reason.

I was writing Tristan as feeling super guilty about the Wood thing, and I wanted to lighten it a little, so I was REALLY glad when I realized I could use the Twins teasing Wood to ease that a bit.

And yeah, Tristan has some really troubling behaviors--but you're right that doing drugs isn't the same as being violent or hateful. That's more indicative of a person's emotional turmoil, and while it's troubling, it's not really /immoral/.

Hahahahaha--I totally want to describe them as Troll A and Troll B at some point! That's too good!

I think he said mudblood to kind of reclaim the word (like queer, or the n-word-without-the-r-at-the-end). He might arguably be seen as a mudblood, if his dad's a muggle and mum's a muggle-born (like how Harry's a half-blood because Lily was muggle-born). But it IS tenuous. Mostly, Tristan WANTS to identify as a 'mudblood.' As you've noticed, he's sort of obsessed with muggle culture.

And can I just say, you are the BEST for pointing out the typos! Thank you SOSOSOSOSO much!


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Review #9, by Maelody 

13th January 2015:
Hey! There's a reference to your Doge/Albus one-shot in here! :D Isobel is the great niece, eh? That's super cool!

Though I am a bit confused as to why a purist would call him a mudblood? Normally he would be considered a blood traitor, or dirty/tainted blood, but not necessarily a mudblood. Just as Draco Malfoy never called Harry a mudblood, just Hermione. His parentage is exactly that of Harry's. :)

Poor Em! She's still so sour about how mean Snape was! Though I have to admit, it was sort of funny to see how he favored Tristan over her. Good to know it's not just a Malfoy thing, but a Slytherin thing by chance all around.

This is another side of Oliver Wood I never expected to see, but it actually make perfect sense! How much he talks about despising Slytherin in the books in Quidditch wouldn't go awry just because he's outside of a Quidditch scene! This is a great bit of detail and I love it. Makes me love Wood a little less simply because I am a Slytherin, but it works out really well here! Poor Tristan, though. Especially since he goes back to his dorm and everyone's heard of it already.

I like that little Draco has already started getting used to the idea of his House and manipulating his way around it. I feel like, in a way, he's even trying to reach out to Tristan at this point by going to Reece to explain what he think's Tristan's lineage is. Then, of course, when Tristan dispels their theories, Draco would drop the idea of keeping him around. Sort of what's going on in my head anyway. :)

This chapter is one of my favorites so far! There's so much going on outside of Harry's life in the time he's in Hogwarts. I love that you got your hands on it and are going through this set of of characters! It's got me completely hooked! Great job!


Author's Response: My thinking was that wizarding Britain is SO tiny, that all of these "OCs" are related to characters named in canon. I wanted Isobel to be kind of a notable pureblood, but from a family totally unconnected from Death Eaters or the like. She's not super rich, but reasonably well off, from a distinguished family. I have a lot of weird love for Doge, so he seemed a good candidate for a great uncle!

Harry's dad was a pureblood, though, while Tristan's parents are a muggle-born and a muggle. But yeah, 'mudblood' is tenuous. But! If Harry is a 'halfblood' because his mom's muggleborn, than wouldn't Tristan be a mudblood, since he has no wizarding grandparents? But really, you are right. Tristan is trying to invoke these technicalities, even though it's inaccurate. He's just being subversive.

Bwahahaha--I really love writing Snape ;)

I definitely don't have any hate for Oliver, but I felt like he would totally ruffle Tristan. (And Tristan's hardly blameless for their little spat--I'm rather cross with him for cursing the innocent geranium). Wood's got a few zealous attributes in canon, so drawing those out was a lot of fun!

Yee! I'm so glad the Draco cameo gave you thoughts! That's what's fun about writing such MAJOR canon characters as little minor characters here. Everything they do can be read into a lot, because we're already so familiar with them!



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Review #10, by pointless_proclamations 

8th January 2015:

Right from the beginning you've got me properly laughing. Again, your clever sense of humour is just wonderful.

The way Tristan compares the wizarding side of the world and the Muggle side of the world tells me that you really think about EVERYTHING. It seems that you've completely dissected both sides of the world at this point.

Anyways, so I'm laughing and then you go and make me poor heart ache for Tristan and how he is unable to fit into either. BUT the way Emily reacts to him assures me that he's not as alone as he may think sometimes. He's got his friends, hasn't he?

Oh my gosh, more hilarity with the twins. I LOVE THE WAY YOU WRITE THEM!! Good grief and the way they quoted Dumbeldore! I can't stay on my seat, Roisin.

Oooh! This idea of a sweet spot in which Tristan's stereo can function normally intrigues me! Pray tell, what brought about this idea?

I do adore that you've shown this less than pleasant side of Gryffindors with Wood. The house dynamics you've explored is fascinating especially with Tristan in the middle of it all. The generalisations some people make and how they can hurt sometimes!

There is something so satisfying about reading how Tristan answers Reece's question. Can I give him a high-five for that?

Oh, and you've got wonderful chapter images, by the way.


Author's Response: Hello! I've held off on replying to this review until I got a chance to review your story, so now I can finally settle in to respond!

Some of the analysis of the muggle vs magical worlds is taken from general jokes and nitpicking that's happened in the nearly 8 years since the series concluded, so I can't take FULL credit for that. Rather than treat these things as flaws of the story, I wanted to treat them like REALITIES, and see how someone might feel frustrated by them. Like, the wizarding world was DESIGNED to suit Harry, so I was interested to see how someone different from him might fare.

Bahahaha--I'm so glad you liked the appropriation of the Dumbledore quote!

As for the stereo functioning, I have really bad cell reception at my house, and have totally wandered around trying to find a sweet spot (I know them all now!)

Yeah, every House has its strengths and weaknesses, and the qualities that make Gryffindors great could just as easily make them obnoxious.

And YAY! I'm glad Tristan taking back that slur resonated with you! You may definitely high-five him :)

(Ah, I spent so long on these CIs! I'm glad you like!)


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Review #11, by magnolia_magic 

7th December 2014:
Hi Roisin! It has been far too long since I've gotten to pick this story back up. RL has been cray cray and I just sort of left my review thread to die...But. I'm so glad you took me up on my swap offer! I loved getting back into the swing of your story :)

Eeee, a Tristan chapter! I just want to give him a hug, even though I feel like he would hate it :P I can definitely relate to Emily's desire to just "rationalize him into being happy." But he's at a tough age, and even though Hogwarts is warm and fuzzy and magical (especially the way you write it), sometimes things just aren't okay. I really love the way you preserve that nice, nostalgic Hogwarts feeling while simultaneously getting into the darker, more complicated headspace of your characters.

So Tristan isn't a pureblood after all? That was a surprise to me. So...how exactly did he get into Slytherin with so much Muggle in him? Things are brewing here. I'm excited to dig deeper :) The altercation with Wood during Herbology class was well done; in fact, it's something I could see Harry doing during his angsty phase in OOTP. I wasn't expecting such a mean-spirited Wood, but then again he is a Gryffindor, and he has to protect his pride, I guess. Fred and George had a great attitude about it, at least, and you wrote their reactions and mannerisms so, so well.

I enjoyed this, as always! I hope I can carve out some more time to keep reading soon, because I'm dying to know what's going on with these kids. There are still so many questions and mysteries. Hopefully you will see me again before too much longer! And in answer to your question in your response to my last review, yes, you can feel free to use that line whenever your heart desires :) Thanks for swapping with me, Roisin!


Author's Response: Hello!!!

Ah! I'm so happy you feel like there's Hogwarts nostalgia here, despite a pretty heavy thematic emphasis elsewhere. I really wanted it to feel like the same world, and have a tangible connection to the Philosopher's Stone. And then since I had zero familiarity with fanfiction when I wrote out the first draft, I kind of came up with my own interpretation of what that meant, so there are a lot of references to the books (sometimes by like, re-using a phrase or concept, but changing its meaning). Basically, its very aware that it's fanfiction, so meta references are common :)

'Rationalizing someone into being happy' is such a thing! I've done it for sure, and it's been done to me. Like, trying to debate someone out of whatever they are feeling.

Tristan is very much a Slytherin, but the traits manifest in him differently than what we see in the books. I loved the idea of a reluctant/rebellious Slytherin, who could be just as elitist, but in different ways (namely, being a music snob). There's more later about exactly how he came to be a Slythrin, wot with his parentage.

I was definitely channeling Harry's OotP angst in this story! I think it's a tough age, and Rowling wrote it really well, so Harry being super frustrating at times is very much mirrored here :)

Yee! Thank you so much for the swap!


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Review #12, by casual_chaos 

30th November 2014:
Hello again!

So, I've read through the next few chapters already (couldn't stop reading/didn't have time to review) so I was extremely pleased when I saw your request! I do hope you'll come back to request for the rest!

This is one of my favourite chapters so far! The beginning, with the four of them supposedly studying and Tristan musing about the paintings and then about the Muggle world - that was one of the best scenes I have ever read in fanfiction. I'm serious. I remember when I was reading this chapter about two weeks ago and I came to the part which begins with: ''Tristan's train of thought arrived at the same destination it always did: a pang like homesickness for the muggle world.''

I had to stop reading because I was so blown by this strange epiphany I had. As a kid, naturally I thought that being a witch in Hogwarts would be the coolest thing ever. And that notion had stayed with me ever since - I believed that if the wizarding world happened to be real, every Muggle-born who ever found out they were a witch or a wizard would be the happiest person in the world (which is normal because wands and owls and flying on a broom and, well, magic!). But after reading this, I started thinking about what it would imply - realising you're a witch/wizard. Like, what if some of them wanted to become scientists or Muggle novelists or actors or anything that requires some sort of Muggle education (perhaps actor wasn't the best example :P)? These kids would end up being sucked into this weird life they never planned on living and now that I really think about it, it seems unfair. They wouldn't even be able to listen to music, for heaven's sake! I feel so sorry for Tristan because of this - I know how I would feel if I had to wait for months to listen to music I genuinely love. All of this is what you said yourself through Tristan but the point is - this is the first time I actually thought about this. I have a Muggle-born character who was very scared when she first came to Hogwarts but she adjusted with time. But I never thought about the possibility of some of them not wanting to adjust. And since this is such a fresh approach to the subject of Muggle-borns, I am so incredibly happy you wrote this story. It is a true pleasure to read - it's smart and thought-provoking and fun and oftentimes sad and I love it all.

Huh, now the rest of the chapter. First, some quotes.

''While he did think owning a record shop would be cool, he didn't quite have the words for what he really wanted to do.'' This is adolescence in a nutshell, well done.

''She tended to get upset and combative whenever he gave voice to his misery, and seemed to think she could rationalize him into being happy.'' Oh and this. Such a lovely characterisation of Emily, one of my favourite lines in this chapter.

I loved the whole Oliver Wood kerfuffle! The entire scene in the greenhouse was so vivid and very respectful to the HP series (loved the plant references). I always thought Oliver Wood was a bit mad and I think he was very in character here.

And then the thing with Reece becoming more interested in Tristan because he jinxed Wood, and the irony of Tristan being as irritated with Reece as he is with Wood - just brilliant.

More questions arising concerning Laurel! I really like the slow build-up of her story line. Oh and her comment about the Gyffindors was pure gold.

Also, this: ''The prefect was mid-discussion with an exceptionally pale first-year and his troll-faced entourage.'' This was the perfect description of Malfoy, Crabbe and Goyle from a stranger's point of view! And there's something very entertaining about the words 'troll-faced' and 'entourage' standing next to each other.

Ah! I had another small epiphany during reading! I'm from the Balkans and we use the word 'rizla' here so often that I always thought it was sort of our word. It sounds like it could be our word. And then I saw it written here and I googled it and realised it was a brand name! Like a Kleenex thing! Hah, I thought I'd mention it (even though it has absolutely nothing to do with your story.) Sorry, I love to rant when it's past midnight. :D

As for CC, there are some minor errors I found. You have a punctuation error in the chapter summary ('you're' instead of 'your'). And here you have a capitalization error: ''And Loose Lips? brilliant!'' said Fred.
Other than that, there is this segment here: ''privy to the entire, repetitive, story''. I would lose the repetitive here because it chopps up the sentence while not being crucial to the meaning (because later on you mention how Wood re-enacts the scene four times). It's really really minor but I am very critical when it comes to sentence structure and this really stood out to me.

Okay, CC done! I'm going to wrap this up and say thank you for requesting! This was a thoroughly enjoyable chapter and I'm looking forward to reviewing the rest!


Author's Response: Yee! Hello!

I will definitely keep coming back :)

That scene definitely got the most attention--the first 2 chapters were separate docs, but then the rest was all one, so whenever I went in to edit a later part, I ended up tweaking that scene.

Aha! I'm so glad you thought that :D So the concept behind Tristan's character, which I hope comes across, is that he's sort of the 'Anti-Potter.' Over course of the story, I tried to take as many things about Harry, and kind of invert them. Like a mirror image--identical, but opposite. The idea there, is that Rowling came up with Harry first, and then the rest of the story and universe followed, so I wanted to examine his inverse in the same context.

I definitely don't dislike Wood, but he has some intense characteristics that I thought would bristle against Tristan nicely :)

'Slow build' is definitely how Laurel's bit works--I'm glad you like it! And haha, Gryffindor just got so much play in canon, I super want to play around with other House's perspectives.

I'm glad you found 'troll-faced entourage' as funny as I did :)

Yes! I'm American, but I know in the UK, rizla is used like 'kleenex' or 'Q-tip'--had no idea that was true elsewhere! 'Skins' is another British-ism for rolling papers, but I think it's more contemporary, so I didn't include it.

Ah, thank you SO MUCH for your CCs! I will go scurry to edit now :D

I will be back to re-request just as soon as a spot opens up!


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Review #13, by Moonyxluna 

29th November 2014:
Hey I'm here with your requested review! As far as what you mentioned in your request, that's exactly what I've always had in mind. It happens all the time. So I'm glad I could stop by hopefully be a little help!

When I do multi-chapter reviews I like to talk a little bit about what I like in each chapter before actually leaving the big meaty one at the end. So with that, chapter one! I love the introductions of Sophie and Tristan. Sophie's being a Muggle is something that I always love to see thrown in the wizarding mix. They seem like these typical Nineties grunge kids that just instantly warm my heart to read about. You introduce them so flawlessly that the picture of Tristan's room and the magical house he was trying to hide just jump out onto the page so perfectly. Reading less critically than normal, the only thing I noticed editing wise in that chapter would be to capitalize 'Muggle' since it's something JKR invented. I love the use of minor characters, too!

Chapter two! I love the idea about the kids sort of using cheering charms, almost in place of another substance. It's so original, but now that I sit and think about it, I suppose it could legitimately happen! Isobel is interesting so far; she seems like the mother hen of the group. (She isn't a Prefect, though, right? I am assuming so from her monologue in the beginning, but chalk it up to my own reader verification/vacation brain. Also, like 'Muggle', Prefect should be capped.) I'm definitely looking forward to learning about her as the story goes on. You seem like you have an amazing grasp on showing as we go, and I'm really looking forward to reading more about her, and the other main characters. Again, loving those little connections to Canon; in two's case, the Weasley twins' intro.

They all have very vivid personalities, not even at chapter three, that I really love. It's really original to see such rebellious kids written so well; you take such a fresh spin on a well-loved character trait that they pop out of the page for the reader. Was definitely laughing during the 'Hufflepuff' jokes.

Was kind of surprised in chapter three that Tristan is in Slytherin, even with having a Muggle father. I know it definitely does happen (according to Pottermore :p) so I'm curious if he's going to hear anything about that. Though, it seems like he wouldn't really care all too much about his blood status compared to some of the other Slytherins. They all seem like they have a lot of other priorities besides being the coolest Quidditch star A+ students. Like Cheering Charms at dinner :D I love Emily. The little waving part with Dumbledore was HEARTWRENCHING (seriously), and I loved Tonks sticking up for her. Just LOVE.

And at chapter four! So job titles (i.e. Potions Master) should be capped. As would 'Seeker'. (basically the reasoning is that it gives credit to JKR for creating the wizarding world; it's not distracting by any means, but just something to take a look at for if you edit.)

I love the subtle jab at the wizarding world for being backwards about the word 'quaint' - they use inkwells! Made me giggle. The wizarding world just seems to be so stuck in its ways and could probably actually learn a thing or two from Muggles. (Like pens)

In four chapters, you've given me some serious feelings about these kids. This is just SUCH a fresh and new story, that I want to sit and read through it all in one sitting. (*sigh* if time permitted. Though, this is definitely going in my favorites for a rainy day. When I say I am unabashedly in love, I absolutely mean it.)

The way you incorporate canon PS/SS is wonderful. I love all of the mentions of the Weasley twins, and their habits. (I think it happened in a previous chapter, but Fred and George bringing some home for their dad was hilarious).

When I say this, I want you to know that I hesitated for a while and am only bringing it up because you asked for some C.C. With these 'coming of age' type stories, the one thing you want to be wary of is still incorporating some individual character plot. I don't have any doubts that as I read on in the story, but I'd like to point it out. The main motivation for the story is already coming through, but I'd like to see the individual character motivations/developments come up soon. They're the rebellious kids, and it's beautifully written, but I suppose I'm looking for a little bit more about what is making them the way that they are. Be it love of the music (shiny distraction for a second, I heart the Muggle music references), home situation, just something that is pushing them towards generally not adhering to the status quo. I see the start of it with Tristan and his general backlash towards his House, but I'd love to see the girls'.
With that, since the theme of a 'coming of age' and general nineties Perks of Being a Wallflower meets Hogwarts theme is the major plot line, I'm not too much looking to harp on finding that, so much as individual character motivations and developments. (whew. I rewrote that sentence like five times. Please let me know if I butchered it and you don't understand.)

I LOVE Tristan owning the 'Mudblood' term and throwing it back at his Slytherin peers as they try to bond with him. It was SUCH a brilliant way to wrap up this chapter. I am really excited to read more of this. Like I mentioned, definitely adding this to my favorites. I hope this was at least a little helpful through the endless gushing. Please do re-request for the next chapters asap! (though I can't promise they'll all be monsters like this one. heh.)


Author's Response: Hello! Thank you SO MUCH for this review :D

And for the points on capitilazation--thank you! Will definitely fix that when I re-edit :)

Right--that would totally happen! If you have a group of 500-1000 kids, and you teach them all mind altering spells when they're 13/14, some of them WILL totally abuse them!

:] I'm glad you were surprised Tristan was a Slytherin--definitely was going for a !shock! moment there.

And yeah, I do love all the whimsy of the wizarding world, but someone who straddles both the magical and muggle worlds could easily resent it.

I agree with the character plot point--I think it takes too long for the story to come into focus, and I spend a long time on exposition. Then again, might be worth it--I definitely don't think this story would be to everyone's taste (so glad it's to yours!), and I think it might be good to let readers who don't dig it time to lose steam before I throw All Sorts of Gritty at them.

Eee, thank you so much for this review! It has made my day :D


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Review #14, by Slide 

26th October 2014:
Huzzah, a Tristan chapter. Looking forward to seeing him in his school environment. Though Isobel is fast becoming my favourite; I do love the snarky-stoic ones. I regret never writing more Sir Cadogan in my fics. Or any at all. Poor Tristan, with his stoned consideration of a portrait's life.

I love Tristan's ruminations on the perspective of wizard-Muggle relations, though. It's so true that most magic users, even if they're being kind to Muggles, treat them in a kind of indulgent manner, like cute pets. I've often assumed Muggle Studies at Hogwarts to fill a similar ground, though we have NO examples of canon, and considering Charity Burbage died for her job it's nice to think that she is actually teaching her students about proper Muggle society and history.

Ha, yes. All jobs connect to government in the wizarding world. With some exceptions, but it's the majority of what we see. Isobel's goals are curious, and I wonder what it's stemming from. But obviously magical theory is heavily western-based (with the root words of most spells being Latin, or Anglo-Saxon, or Greek).

Poor Wood. Though imagine knowing someone like Wood and NOT caring about Gryffindor Quidditch. You'd go absolutely spare. Though I like that this scene, while casting Gryffindors in the imperfect light, doesn't make Tristan seem like a poor, innocent Slytherin. Aw, I was afraid Sprout was being anti-Slytherin, but it's sweet that she'd be looking out for people - and would make perfect sense for the Hufflepuff head.

Okay, I take back my comments on Wood. Admittedly I can see why he'd view Tristan that way, but his slight on Emily loses my sympathy. Sigh. Silly teenaged boys.

And more layers on Laurel. She is quite the mysterious one of the bunch, hmm? I note not just her motherly issues, but the 'Ms' on her mother, which is... telling. Also, I totally reckon most of the rest of the Houses would be utterly sick of Gryffindor. Love 'em, but they are so bloody overbearing. Still! It's 'nuanced' teenager hijinks, as neither side is the absolute victim here, and both have precipitated this conflict. I like it.

'Brycey.' Poor Tristan. That's, like, the worst punishment ever. Oh-ho, not even half-blood! Good for him. Also that makes a lot more sense, a Muggleborn marrying a Muggle; not everyone would want to give up their entire Muggle upbringing to be so completely immersed in the magical world as it tends to demand Muggleborns become.

I like these end notes of little factoids not in the prose! It would be clunky to exposit about wand-types for more than one person, but *I* care, anyway! :D

Author's Response: Oh man, portraits! What a can of worms! I couldn't not throw in some examination there ;)

I definitely wrote this story at a time when I was deep into studying colonialism, racial constructions, prejudice, etc - so that's a thing! Definitely wanted to point out the paternalism even in Good Wizards.

And a LOT of this story is inspired by the fact that Rowling came up with the idea of Harry all at once, when he was an adult, and then reverse engineered him to create the story. So in a very real way, the entire wizarding world revolves around Harry, since she designed it to suit his story. I was interested in how it might affect different people, who don't quite fit. (Tristan is very much my Anti-Potter - kind of like a mirror image, in some ways identical, but inverted).

Isobel is of mixed ancestry (English and Egyptian Arab - her uncle is Hassan Mostafa from GoF), so she definitely gets ruffled by Western bias.

Tristan is definitely a flawed person, and hardly in the right in that situation - just lashed out. In the conflict between Wood and Tristan, my sympathy lies with the geranium.

Heehee, I'm a Gryffindor myself, so I figured I could get away with showing how some of their characteristics could be obnoxious. (And as Rowling suggested in PS, there's rather a fine line between Brave and Stupid).

"Reluctant Slytherin" was such an exciting idea to me! I'm so glad you like! (And I dunno if it totally came across, but his mum is Mary MacDonald from Snape's DH memories!)

And I'm so glad you like all my little end notes! I did like, an embarrassing amount of research for this story, and not all of it ended up in the story explicitly, but I couldn't resist sharing certain things! And the Pottermore thing about Ebony wands was just TOO PERFECT!!!

Yee, I am SO STOKED on this swap! Thank you so much for your amazing reviews! I'm gonna have to ramp up my review game :D

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Review #15, by mymischiefmanaged 

9th September 2014:
And we're back to Tristan. I'd quite like to hear from Laurel but also Tristan's story seems at the moment to be the most mysterious/interesting so I'm not disappointed at this POV choice.


And also I love that her friends call her out on it straight away. She's adorable.

That whole observation about what it's like to be a painting is such a lovely insight into Tristan's way of thinking. I love how he just accepts that when he's high Sir Cadogan freaks him out. He doesn't try to resolve the problem at all. He's such an adolescent :)

The discussion of muggle studies is actually really interesting. It's implicit in all of the HP books that people (except Arthur Weasly, obvs) DO believe muggle society is backwards and inferior. Even Harry seems to kind of hint at it. They think they're not making judgements about the people, just about the way of living, but Tristan seems to view the situation much more logically and sensibly. The ink well observation is brilliant. I bet he'd get along very well with Arthur.

That line about Tristan's connection to the muggle world coming more from rage than love is another one to add to my catalogue of things I don't currently understand but very much want to understand about Tristan.

FRED AND GEORGE ARE BACK. And everything about them made me laugh. You write them exactly the way JK does and I love you for it.

Tristan's absolute dependence on muggle music is really interesting. His becoming actually despondent because he can't listen to it is intriguing. I guess he's associated a lot of problems with being trapped away from the muggle world? I get the impression he's linked the muggle world with feeling safe, and music comes into that. I don't know, but whatever the reason is, it works very well.

Of course Oliver Wood's boasting about Harry and keeping him a secret. That's so utterly believable and in character but also really irritating of him.

And now he's bringing up Tristan being a Slytherin! I think Gryffindors don't think enough about tolerating other houses. In canon they always seem very quick to make judgements based on house, perhaps more so than other houses are.

I really want to know more about Laurel. So far she's the character we've seen least, and it just seems like she's got some pretty big issues. While the others see the charms etc as a bit of fun she seems much more dependent, and I get the impression there must be some explanation for that.

Hehehe of course the twins don't mind that Tristan hexed Oliver. I know they're not the focus of the story but I'm enjoying them so so much.

And is Tristan really muggleborn? That doesn't seem right. So now I'm thinking maybe he's adopted? I don't know and I'm finding it frustrating that I don't know because you're dropping so many little hints and I'm sure everything's going to be fascinating and wonderful but I bet we don't find out what's going on until much later.

Well, this is another flawless chapter. I'm so glad to have started reading your story! I've never read anything like this before and I'm loving it.

Much love,

Emma x

Author's Response: The POV rotations are pretty consistent for the first chunk of the story, and leaving Laurel's out was a decision I made, to kind of keep our understanding of her limited to other people's perspective (and to give it more impact when we finally get into her head). I hope it works out!

Yee, I love Emily! It's funny that 'unethical' really is rather a big insult to here :D

Paintings would TOTALLY freak me out to. The sentience and self-awareness of paintings and photos really interests me (in Ch1, a photo seems to respond to getting dropped).

THAT IS SUCH A HUGE COMPLIMENT! I had sososo much fun writing the twins, and really all the canon characters, because I feel like I know them so well!

I really liked what you said about music representing the muggle world and safety! What a wonderful analysis!

Oliver always had a few quirks in canon--like a manic obsession with Quidditch. Since he's one of the only named canon characters in Tristan's year, I thought it would be really fun to see how he bristled Tristan, as they are so at odds. And I think you are totally right about Gryffindors judging other houses--I've never thought of it like that so specifically, but it super rings true.

I should edit that sequence to make it more clear: Harry was a "half blood," since Lily was muggle born. Therefore, since Mary MacDonald is a Muggle Born, and Eddie Bryce is a muggle, that would ostensibly make Tristan a "mudblood," since he has no pureblood ties. Will definitely revise!

Thankyouthankyouthankyou! Now that my internet isn't being bratty, I can get back to Complicated!


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Review #16, by crestwood 

4th September 2014:
There was a number of things I loved about this chapter. I keep writing these extremely long lists of things that I related to or thought clever or just want to discuss. This story really reviews itself.

Tristan's assertion that most Wizarding jobs are 'in the Ministry, or tangential to the Ministry' is something that I've done a lot of thinking about in the past. To a large extent it really is true, at least in canon. There isn't much mention of career paths that the Trio isn't interested in because we see it from their point of view, so I like to think of new and exciting jobs in the Wizarding world whenever I get a chance so I really did love that you had a similar thought. I adore the fact that he's having issues thinking of a career path that suits him.

THIS WHOLE SENTENCE 'It seemed like the worst kind of curse to Tristan, as portraits lived a kind of half-life, confined to two dimensions, watching the world pass around them' IS BRILLIANT IN SO MANY DIFFERENT WAYS. You just made me truly think about the extent of the sentience portraits have in the Wizarding world and whether they are content with never truly existing in the same realm as the one they can witness and interact with.

Also, I have ALWAYS wondered about non-Western magic. I'd love to know if it's different and if so, how?

The line about Emily attempting to 'rationalize him into being happy' was interesting. It made me consider if anyone has ever given a nuanced argument as to why my sadness or fear is unfounded and thus alleviated my unhappiness. I somehow doubt it.

It makes sense to me that Fred and George wouldn't want to smoke tobacco for some reason. Love the subtle reference to the twins having the Mauraders Map and the ‘a magic beyond all we do here' line was genius!!

I can definitely relate to the lengths he went to listen to Bowie because I'd be pulling my hair out if I had to go an entire term of school without any music at all.

Your end notes are almost as interesting to read as the chapters themselves. I love the effort you put into this. You even took the time to think about their wands in relation to their personalities, this is perfect. Thank you for all of this.

Author's Response: AH! Thank you so much!!! I'm so stoked that you're picking up on/interested in all these little ideas. This story is very much a teen dramedy in terms of stuff that actually happens, but it was also a way to explore these different curiosities I had and analyze the wizarding world!

I read somewhere that JK Rowling came up with the character of Harry Potter as an adult first, and reverse engineered him into a child/created the Potterverse as the place that shaped him. So, and I wonder if this comes across, I wrote Tristan to be a sort of anti-Potter. Whereas the wizarding world suits Harry, it doesn't suit Tristan.

YES--the sentience of paintings (and possibly, to a lesser extent, photographs) is a super duper big can of worms for me! Just HAD to address it!

My headcanon about nonwestern magic: so HP magic is largely coming from British/Western European mythology (Arthurian and the suchlike), plus some historical stuff (witch-burnings/alchemy). Potter magic is basically IT IS ALL LITERALLY REAL! So non-western magic would be LITERALLY REAL folk-magic and spiritual traditions. In this story, I sort of posit subtly that non-western magic is often more subtle/less wand-centric, and largely rejected by the British magical community.

And yeah, you can rarely debate someone into changing their feelings and emotions, but that never stops people from trying!

And totally about the Twins: sure, they might go through a spliff-smoking phase when they're teenagers, but I feel like they would still be kind of responsible/grounded about it. I wanted to point out here how experimental behaviors aren't exactly an "all or nothing" thing--and that there are degrees of substance use.

Yeah, I totally would have wandered around outside Hogsmeade with a stereo too :)

Aha, yes I researched their wands, gave them all birthdays/astrological signs, figured out their Myers-Briggs types, and even looked into what day of the week they were born on (to check against the "Monday's Child" poem. Was super bummed that Tristan wasn't born on a Wednesday, but his birthday has to be when it was. Emily was Sunday, though! Making her "Bonnie and blithe and good and gay!" Perfect!)

Thank you SOsoSosoSO much for your amazing reviews!


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Review #17, by Gabriella Hunter 

1st September 2014:

This is Gabbie with your requested review and I'm a tad late but I was battling with writer's block and it was not pretty.

Anyway, on to this! I was really happy to get back to Tristan's POV, I really think that he's an interesting characters. He's very hard to understand on some levels but on others, I can really follow his train of thought--I especially liked how conflicted he was about muggle society versus the wizarding world while also acknowledging how far behind wizards were in terms of simple things. I'm curious about what Tristan will end up doing with himself though and I can tell that he's a bit panicked about where his life will take him, he doesn't seem particularly interested in being in the wizarding world and I wonder how that will play a part later for his character. I do wonder why he's so withdrawn though and even with his friends, he admitted that he was more of an observer rather than a participant and I'd like to know more about him.

Now, I don't blame him for hexing Wood (Also nice job of having Wood being kind of a prat, that's a side to him we don't see often) and I liked that you showed a different side to the Gryffindors. Usually in stories they're portrayed as being very good natured or, God help me, nice and that gets a bit old. I personally think that Gryffindors have the tendency to be a bit smug and you showed that when Tristan was ambushed by Wood and his friends. I've said this before but this story makes me think of Hogwarts in a more realistic way and while there's magic and whatnot, I can see that it IS a school and has more than its share of issues. Tristan towards the end earned even more of my love, I can understand why he wouldn't want to be anywhere near his fellow Slyherins (Well, the stuck up ones anyway) and his snappy comment towards Reece and his cronies was perfection. I feel like Tristan belongs in one place, wants to be in another but is forced to be somewhere he despises but I might be wrong but I think its really great to read. A complex character for sure is more interesting to men than one who is so hopelessly perfect and happy. Anyway, thanks so much for the read (I wonder what's going on with Laurel? I didn't forget about that scene, I'm sure you'll follow up on it soon) and feel free to re-request!

Much love,


Author's Response: Hello again!
Bah, what is lateness? There is not lateness!

Man, I'm still so surprised I wrote Tristan! I kind of had to reverse engineer him :) Like, I wrote out the whole first draft of this story, and only THEN did I get to know him. After that, I went back and rewrote the story so that he was that person. I hope by the end, you feel like you know him too!

Thank you! I was so worried about people's reaction to Wood at first, since most other Hogwarts stories in this era ship him--but so far it's been really good! I feel like in canon, he had a few wee flaws. He could be loud, Quidditch obsessed, and a little over-aggressive. Since he's only fifteen here, I really wanted to draw out those qualities, and see how they would bristle Tristan. They were definitely both in the wrong at some point--Tristan totally didn't need to hex Wood (or his geranium!), and then Wood totally pre-judged Tristan and resorted to mild violence.

I kind of picture Tristan as being self-sabotaging. He resents being a Slytherin so much that he avoids ever engaging in his (positive) Slytherin characteristics. Like, he would be much less frustrated if he just let himself be ambitious :(

AH, it is SUCH a big compliment that you think this story makes Hogwarts more realistic! Thank you!!! I feel like Harry only really missed all this stuff because he and his friends were too busy battling evil!

Thank you SO MUCH for the review, and I'm glad to hear you vanquished your writers block! Your thread looks like it has a lot of demands on it right now, so I'll wait until you have a proper spot open, and mind your sanity!


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Review #18, by teh tarik 

31st August 2014:
Hey hey!

Ah, I've been wanting to get back to this story and read about the Hex Heads with all their teen angst and ganja smoke since like, forever! So yay! And hello again, Tristan. I love how downbeat and downtrodden and downcast you've written him, and what a complete contrast he is to cheerful Emily Sunshine Madley (I can't get over her brilliant name :P ). Interactions between her and Tristan are so amusing to read about, how Emily gets a tad impatient and almost indignant whenever Tristan is feeling so miserable with himself. He's such an individualistic and non-conformist character, and I appreciate how much trouble you took to researching the type of wand he should wield in order to have some match with his personality.

One of my favourite things was seeing him hex Wood. Wow, Wood is such a jerk. :P Definitely a very refreshing portrayal of Wood! You've accentuated some of his worst characteristics, which are only very briefly touched upon in the books (e.g. his Quidditch mania, bullishness and loudness etc.) and I really love this angle of his portrayal! And I was a bit startled to see him and his other Gryffindor mates threaten Tristan, who's all by his lonesome. They're such a contrast to Fred and George.

Speaking of Fred and George, am loving the way they pop up here and there, spliffing away with the Hex Heads time to time. They're kind of like news-bringers from other parts of the school, especially since these Hex Heads are so absorbed in their own selves and their own mind altering activities to care too much about other things going on in school.

And I love Tristan's Loose LIps jinx by the way. That would have been hilarious to see!

I'm wondering about Laurel and Isobel, though. There's something clearly going on with Laurel. Isobel was hardly present in this chapter; I don't know how difficult it is to ensure the characters maintain strong individual presences and characterisation each time they appear as a group, especially since these are all OCs, but I think sometimes characters can get overshadowed? Generally, though, you do a great job at writing and depicting your OCs as unique individual characters!

Great chapter; I'll be on to the next one soon!


Author's Response: OH MAN, the research. I also did the Myers-Briggs types for each of them, and figured out what day of the week they were all born on (SO disappointed that Tristan wasn't a Wednesday, as in "Wednesday's child is full of woe" from the Nursery Rhyme). BUT, Emily was "born on the Sabbath day"--making her "bonnie and blithe and good and gay." Score 1!

I'm definitely no Wood hater, but YES--I figured those qualities alluded to in canon would definitely bristle Tristan. And as a Gryffindor, no shade, BUT the characteristics for every House ('cept maybe Hufflepuff) could be either bad or good. So Slytherin doesn't *have* to be evil, just like Gryffs might totally be loudmouthed and needlessly aggressive. Gryffindor was so glamorized in canon, I definitely wanted to look at it another way.

AH! The twins--I really like that analysis actually. I sort of went to High School with a guy like that. He always knew what was going on, and had managed to steal keys to EVERY room. Plus, he had a similar sense of humor. Now that I think about it--I WENT TO HIGH SCHOOL WITH FRED WEASLEY. This TOTALLY supports my "the twins would definitely smoke spliff" claim, as that guy for sure did!!!

Laurel and Isobel will each have their hour. Over the course of the story, the characters take turns getting pulled up to the front, at other times, they are definitely over-shadowed. Or at least, I was going for that--definitely let me know how you think I balance them all out over the course of the story!


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Review #19, by Midnight spark 

31st August 2014:
Me again!
Another interesting chapter! (I think Year Five has become my obsession)

You rarely do mistakes, and when you do it's MINOR (minor!) : I think you spelled 'Cadogan' wrong somewhere. I'm too tired right now to find out exactly where it is.

I love the description of Harry as 'baby superstar'. I don't know why, but I laughed by reading that.

Another doubt: Why was Laurel crying?

Author's Response: Hello!
And THANK YOU! I spelled Cadogan wrong in the first draft (EVERY TIME), and really struggled to fix it when I uploaded. DARN THAT ERRANT MISSPELLING! Thank you for pointing it out! I will definitely fix it when I revise!

And thank you for the kind words! I was quite happy with the "baby superstar" line myself :)

There really isn't an "AHA" moment about why Laurel cried, but I hope you think I examine her well when that comes up later!

Thank you again!!!

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Review #20, by TidalDragon 

30th August 2014:
I think perhaps my favorite aspect of this chapter was the different take we get on Oliver Wood and Gryffindor in particular. Obviously in canon Gryffindor is heavily glamorized - it's Harry's house, most of the major players are all past or present Gryffindors, and not much focus is given at all to the flaws inherent in members of the house (unlike characters from some others, particularly Slytherin). This actually reminded me that NONE of your truly central characters are in Gryffindor, and I think that's a very cool touch as well!

Though it's not part of the story itself, I've also enjoyed reading in your A/Ns about all the thought and effort you've put into characters and their wands. I'm interested to see how those things might come into play as the story progresses (if you plan for them to). Tristan definitely seems to live up to his wand wood, especially in this chapter.

I'm interested to see if we'll get an explanation for Tristan's typical mood as the story progresses too. Initially I thought he was less social than his friends and in darker moods because of the incident over summer, but now it's becoming clear he's typically rather...I don't know the word exactly, but not positive-minded.

I'm interested to see what happens with his group as the year develops and how/if relationships will change or how these little tidbits you've been dropping in about certain individuals and dynamics get resolved or addressed.

You're doing a super job so far! See you next chapter!

Author's Response: Haha, yes! Well you know that I'M a Gryffindor--so I definitely wanted to look at it from a different perspective. None of the qualities associated with the four houses are *inherently* good or bad (see: "very brave and very stupid"--HP:PS). Slythetins don't HAVE to be evil, and ambition/cunning are definitely valuable characteristics. Even the exclusivity of it could be seen another way, in that any circle of inclusion is likewise one of exclusion. With that in mind, Gryffindors (especially young ones), could easily be loudmouthed or needlessly aggressive.

The types of wands definitely relate to the story! I was SO HAPPY to find these combinations of woods and cores, that suited each character so beautifully!

Ah, the ever enigmatic Tristan--why the characters feel, think, and behave the way they do is definitely critical to the story. It's kind of the whole story, even.

I'm so glad you're picking up on all those little tidbits! Can't wait to see what you make of the rest of the story!

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Review #21, by AlexFan 

20th August 2014:
When you mentioned that you wanted to see what I would pick up I got all nervous and started thinking, "oh no, this is some reading comprehension test, I am not prepared for this!" (I was never any good at reading comprehension).

I never really thought about Professor Sprout substituting as the school guidance councillor but I can see it happening, she seems as good a choice as any of the other teachers (except for Quirrel, that is). And I think that Tristan really should go and talk to her about his problems. I'm no doctor but it seems to me as if he has some sort of depression. I think Laurel needs to talk about what's going on in her life as well because she seems to be having some problems also.

I HAVE NEVER BEEN SO MAD AT OLIVER WOOD IN MY LIFE HE IS SUCH A JERK FACE OH MY GOD. He always seemed like such a nice person to me but it never even occurred to me that Oliver could be prejudiced in any way. But I see that that was a stupid assumption to make. It wasn't only the pureblood elitists that were prejudiced, other people could've been prejudiced as well. I hate how Tristan didn't defend himself, but Oliver had backup and Tristan didn't so he would've lost in a fight anyway (unless he was really good at Defense). I just got so mad at Oliver though for being such a bully and the shaming! Like no, Oliver, stop that right now. YOU SHOULD BE BETTER THAN THIS.

Gryffindors can be especially smug and from this new portrayal of Gryffindors, I can see where the dislike is coming from but it seems like some of the Slytherins are even worse than some of the Gryffindors. I mean really, who sits around talking about lineage, sure people discuss family but it's never usually used as a way of figuring out someone's worth. But at least Tristan isn't afraid to tell the Slytherins to shut up.

I like Tristan but I pity him more than anything and I just want to wrap him up in a hug and protect him from the world. He seems like such a good kid, who maybe made some not so great choices, and I just want to make him feel better.

Author's Response: Aha! No worried, this review is great!

Yeah, I figured Hogwarts must have SOME kind of guidance situation (I mean, with 500 to 1000 teenagers, you'd have to). I chose Sprout because she's not usually given very much play, and the "guidance counselor" role was somewhat inspired by Tessa Wall in the Casual Vacancy (who bears a passing resemblance to Sprout).

And yeah, I also put in a guidance counselor because they NEED ONE.

I WAS SO HAPPY TO READ YOUR ALL CAPS REPLY TO WOOD! I always liked Wood, so I thought it was interesting the posit him as a jerk face. I mean, in canon he can be a little manic, and overenthusiastic at times, so I tried to really draw out those qualities here. I'm still a Wood fan, but you know, teenagers make mistakes/can be jerks from time to time (plus, I feel like his personality would bristle my OCs).

I'm a massive Gryffindor, and they were SO important in canon, that I liked the idea of looking at them another way. Obviously, the perspective the characters have is slightly biased, but then again, canon perspectives of Slytherin or Hufflepuff were too!

And yeah, Tristan's Housemates are pretty nasty. We only got to see into Slytherin lair once in canon, so I wanted to imagine in what ways it would be horrible for Tristan to have to live there :(

That is EXACTLY how one should feel about Tristan! So glad for that! I alternate between wanting to hug him, and wanting to slap him.

Thank you so much for taking the time to leave this review!


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Review #22, by CambAngst 

7th July 2014:
I'm back again! In the spirit of full disclosure, I actually read this chapter last night, but I was way too worn out to write a decent review. Here I am, ready to do it justice. First, a bit of boilerplate:

House Cup 2014 Review

Now, on to the substance and the glory.

Tristan is a really deep kid. Emily, Isobel and Tristan all seem like pretty deep thinkers, actually, but in that "too cool for school" way that prizes off-beat topics and irreverent lines of inquiry. The jury is still out on Laurel, I think, although she is a Ravenclaw so the potential is obviously there.

"'Ouch," teased Isobel. "You really know where to hit Snapey where it hurts: ethics." -- A brilliant line, although you have an extra single quote in front of "Ouch".

I love the idea of Sir Cadogan attempting to mentor and intimidate the foursome, it cracks me up. I hate to sound like a broken record, but you misspelled his name in the first mention: Cadoaon. I think that was the last typo I saw.

There was nothing Tristan hated more than being confined. -- You slip in a lot of small facts and observations about Tristan in this story. I'm almost to the point of giving up on trying to figure out which ones have a bigger purpose and which do not. Almost. This one seems like something that might pop up again later on.

I loved Tristan's nickname for Quirrell, but the description raised an interesting -- and exceedingly minor -- point in my head. I'm not sure that Quirrell stuttered before his encounter with Voldemort. The Harry Potter Wiki -- which always must be treated with skepticism, but is sometimes correct by sheer chance -- implies that he was always timid, but started to stutter and faint after returning from his sabbatical. Take it for what it's worth. Probably nothing to lose sleep over.

Tristan's meditation on the definition of quaint was completely brilliant. Kudos to Marauderfan for that one!

Interesting. Tristan has a point where his job prospects are concerned, although he overdoes it a bit. I'd never given much thought to what might happen for a witch or wizard who wished to reenter the muggle world after finishing their studies at Hogwarts. There are approximately three million fan fics out there -- mostly Dramiones; ick -- where Hermione attends a muggle university after Hogwarts but they all tend to skim over the topic of what she submitted for a secondary school transcript.

You are doing a marvelous job of slow-playing whatever it is that's developing between Tristan and Emily. They're definitely not romantically involved, but you can see the potential chemistry. She seems to get angry at him when she realizes -- perhaps subconsciously -- that he's beating himself up for no good reason.

Wow. It sure is easy for witches and wizards to cover their tracks when they're on the cusp of getting caught in the midst of some recreation. I envy that.

While I was reading the conflict between Tristan and Oliver Wood, I had this image of Emilio Estevez and Judd Nelson chest-thumping it out in Breakfast Club. Tristan isn't quite the loud-mouthed rebel that Nelson played, but Wood would totally fit with Estevez's jock character. I wonder if he ever taped somebody's buns together in the Quidditch dressing room? Why on earth do I think of things like this???

I wonder what happened to Laurel to put her in such a mood? Could be Cheering Charm withdrawal, I suppose. Or maybe something more. I guess if it's important, we'll find out.

Tristan seems to have earned some respect for standing up to Wood and taking his licks. Fred and George weren't the first ones who came to mind, but it makes sense. The other Slytherins, however, were more of a surprise. And Tristan doesn't take it well at all. I hope that the lie he tells to get back on their bad side doesn't come back to haunt him too badly. Who am I kidding? Of course it will.

Your end notes are required reading for this story. The little bits of color and clarification you add are always interesting.

Great job! Be back soon...

Author's Response: Ah, thank you for catching those mistakes! I will fix them straight away! And the Quirrel thing too.

I'm really glad for your reaction to Tristan! *steeples hands and smirks, ideally while lit from below*

I definitely wanted Tristan to be a bit of a pain, a la Harry when he was in his fifth year. But, obv very different. Just equally 15.

And excellent Emily observation! Glad that came across!

Haha! From this point forward, I will imagine Oliver Wood as Emilio Estevez!

Is 'the lie' you mentioned that he said he was a mudblood? I thought I remembered Harry being considered a half blood because Lily was muggle-born...

Now that I think on it, there isn't a named PC term in the Potter series for the children of muggle-borns. Hmmm.

I'm glad you like the end notes! I wasn't sure if I was just being self-indulgent. There were just little bits of research I happened upon that were really neat, but couldn't be gracefully woven into the story.

Thanks for another wonderful review!

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Review #23, by emmacweasley 

6th July 2014:
House Cup 2014 Review

Hey again. :) Thought I'd come back to one of my favorite stories to leave well-deserved reviews for the cup! I know I've mentioned this before, but I think this is the first chapter when we really get a sense of Tristan and what kind of person he is. I really, really love the fact that he's - as you said - supposed to be an "Anti-Harry-Potter." And I love love love the depiction of the twins.

The only thing I'm really re-thinking, though, is everyone's use of the finite spell. Surely there are hundreds of charms and spells sitting around Hogwarts at any given time, and when they're using finite to come down from a hex, wouldn't they might be disturbing some important spell? *shrug* there's probably a thousand ways to explain it away, but it's just a thought. :)


Author's Response: You know, that is a really good point! I suppose I used Finite because it was how people lift spells in canon, but I hadn't considered that.

I might drop in an explainer in the "Troll in the Dungeons" chapter (when Isobel lifts any spell in the great Hall with Finite Incantatem). Maybe something like Tristan wondering exactly what you wondered, and then explaining to himself that any important spell the teachers cast would be too strong to be affected... Hmmm..

Thanks for the point! If you ever see something like that again, don't hesitate to mention it :)

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Review #24, by water_lily43175 

19th June 2014:
Tristan intrigues me more and more as we go along. The poor guy seems a bit uncertain of his identity. I like, A LOT, the whole theme of wizarding v Muggle world, especially the point that Tristan has, in the Muggle world's eyes, no educational qualifications beyond the age of 11. The books tend to overlook that - granted, that was never something JK wanted to tackle, but the more you think about how the wizarding world operates in secret, the more difficulties arise when considering someone who, for whatever reason, might want to straddle the line between the worlds.

And I'm rambling now.

I do love how the Gryffindor-Slytherin spat can look so different when it comes from a Slytherin's perspective - at least, a Slytherin who's not into the blood purity madness and so is therefore somewhat decent and easier to empathise with. Here, Wood just looks like a 12+ (although admittedly Tristan did hex him for something that wasn't all that bad - mind you, on the third hand I'd be annoyed if it was my workstation which Wood had carelessly bumped into!). Basically the point I'm attempting to make here is that I like seeing the ugly side of Gryffindor, with the assumption all Slytherins are bad.

I wonder what's upset Laurel? Hmm.

I like that the four aren't Quidditch fans. It's nice when people write characters who AREN'T super nutty about it (also I've just written a Quidditch fic and totally put myself off the sport for the time being so it's a relief to find I'll be somewhat free from it here!).

Oh, the Slytherins would start asking Tristan about his lineage the minute he's annoyed a Gryffindor. Tsk tsk!

On I go :)


Author's Response: Discussing the social implications of the magical world was, largely, inspired by an internet trend (mostly on cracked dot cm) doing the same. There's a video called "why Harry Potter is secretly horrifying"--and several articles outlining similar points--which provided endless fodder for this fic.

In the Tristan vs Oliver dispute, my sympathies lie most easily with the geranium (;

Since the story is set during PhilStone, we all know how the quidditch matches go, so I needed to switch things up pretty seriously in order to keep it interesting.

Poor Tristan, with all his muggle pride, stuck in the Slytherin dungeons.

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Review #25, by marauderfan 

12th June 2014:
It's nice to see a scale of grey with Tristan's attitude towards his fellow Snakes and the pureblood community's opinion of Muggles. Oh, I find it funny that uptight purebloods think Muggles are quaint. Um, who is still using inkwells and quills? Not Muggles. :p Purebloods need to reevaluate their definition of quaint.

The old Muggle Studies professor was called Squirrel?! Lol. Good thing he left, as that would be confusing to have Quirrell and Squirrel there at the same time. :p Unless Squirrel IS Quirrell. Now you've got me wondering...

Wow, you've made such a good point there about how the majority of jobs in the wizarding world are connected to the Ministry in some way. And how it sort of sets them up for failure outside that world - how would he get a job in the Muggle world now? Especially as he's someone who has already broken the Statute of Secrecy. Excellent points and I'm so glad you drew attention to them. A) of course Tristan would be the one to bring it up, and b) really does make you think about how backwards and exclusive the wizarding world is.

So, this: “Well what a surprise turn of events,” spat Sprout. -- I thought it seemed slightly OOC for Sprout to lose her temper like that, I seem to remember her as a lot more level headed. Of course that could just be me misremembering, but maybe look at your word choice there?

I appreciate that you showed the 'Slytherin' side of Tristan that would get him noticed, when he hexes a Gryffindor. It's no different to the hexing between the two houses that we see from Harry's POV, but coming from Tristan's POV I don't feel sorry for Oliver but rather for Tristan. Ugh, annoying thouh that the blood purity obsessed Slytherins began to take an interest in him after that. I guess that's a very short term thing though, now that they've found out his mum is Mudblood and his father is a Muggle, haha!

Ooh, interesting trivia about Isobel. Also this reminds me of another thing I wanted to mention, how this group cares nothing for Quidditch is really a breath of fresh air. (Actually, there's probably no such thing as fresh air around those four, but anyway) Harry's world revolves around Quidditch and finding out all these mysteries, and this group of Hex Heads couldn't be bothered. It's neat to see a completely different focus of priorities for other wizards.

Author's Response: "Oh, I find it funny that uptight purebloods think Muggles are quaint. Um, who is still using inkwells and quills? Not Muggles. :p Purebloods need to reevaluate their definition of quaint." You have no idea how much I wish Tristan had said just that. Can I adapt your quote into this chapter when I reedit???

And oh no! Squirrel is their nickname for Quirrel! (According to JK, Voldy-head was the muggle studies prof before he took the DADA job in 1991--hence why all the Hogwarts folk know him already). If that confused you, then I should definitely address it.

I'm glad you liked my meta-analysis of the wizarding world! JK was all about social commentary (Casual Vacancy might be my all time favorite book--and this fic is basically skins+HP+CV).

Oh man, the Sprout quote. I thought it was so funny! And "spat Sprout" sounds so nice--like an onomatopoeia. I could defend it, (she doesn't like killing plants? she got stroppy with Umbridge once?) But I'm sure you are right. Brb why I murder my darling, and a very genuine Thank You for the point.

Tristan is definitely a Slytherin for a reason. I'm glad you identified with his POV, because objectively, he hexed Wood for no reason besides being moody.

"Actually, there's probably no such thing as fresh air around those four"--Truer words have never been said, she typed, exhaling a gluttonous plume of smoke.

And if the term "hex head" catches on on HPFF, that would be everything.

You are the best, no really.

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