6 Reviews Found

Review #1, by Aphoride 

14th November 2015:
NICOLE - I did say I'd be back soon! :P Got the chance to stop by again, so I'm not going to waste it! :) I've meant to catch up on this story for so long, so it's way beyond time! :D

This chapter... omigosh, where to start?! I love the letter from Gellert at the beginning. There's something wonderfully bitter and disdainful about it - and there's this beautiful way you have of writing it where his mind wanders so much, and goes off these little tangents, and at the same time it all feels half calculated, like he's deliberately trying to get a rise out of Albus, or get some kind of response. The last line - p.s. - was so strangely chilling. Gah, you're not going to break my heart with who killed Ariana, are you? Probably - I know you... ;) Wah, but I love the fact that you include it like another taunt - a little, final message just in case Albus has read it and isn't already annoyed :P

That story... Gellert's version of the three brothers tale - well, not quite his version, as such, but you know what I mean ;) - was so haunting, and so beautiful. I love the way you wrote it - it was so gorgeous and yet so obviously recognisable as a fairytale-style story - and how you incorporated the elements of the hallows into another tale, but one which is drastically different. I'd never have thought of that before, and I've never seen it before, but I love it! It's such a clever, unique idea - I'm almost jealous I didn't think of it first :P

Speaking of that, I love how Gellert's reason for telling it to Albus is that Albus likes stories - it's pretty manipulative, but so simple, and perhaps all the more powerful because it's simple, you know? Also, I love how it portrays Gellert definitely as appearing harmless, when he's so very obviously not, as we know, with the whole 'juvenile delinquent' aspect of it.

Also, dat duel, man. I know it was only playing, really, for both of them, but I loved how they end up being so evenly matched - it's a kind of jolting result after kinda knowing from HP that they're so evenly matched, and then Gellert mentioning in his letter that he surrendered after twenty minutes. It sort of comes full circle, almost, in a way, I guess, which I love - I have a strange fondness for circular motifs :P

I really, really love how malicious and powerful and unstable your Ariana is. There's something both frail and yet completely dangerous about her, and it's a brilliant combination. I also, as I think I've mentioned before?, love how you've turned her into more than just a damanged little girl. It's, again, like almost everything about this story, such a unique take on her, and it's so amazing, and so well-crafted it's incredible.

I love the little childish moments with Gellert and Albus dotted throughout this, intersperced with those moments where they appear so much older than they are - when Gellert steals the greengages simply because they're sweeter and he can, where they end up running through the rain together and when they're coming up the path and Ariana's watching them, like they've been friends forever, almost. It's sweet, which is almost a strange - but lovely - thing in this story, with all the tension around it :P (But they're still adorable! :P)

That ending, as well, with that last line... wow. It really vamps up the tension again, makes it feel as though the battlelines have already been drawn, so to speak - almost like this is the point from which nothing can go back. Gah, you're waaay way too good at this mood-setting stuff :P

Loved. It. As you know ;)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Oops, sorry about how my last response ended! *hides* I hit "Preview" and was intending to go back to edit, but clicked on "Submit" instead...gah, it's 7:30AM and I need to finish my coffee...

THank you once again for another brilliant review, Laura! ♥ And I apologise for taking ages to respond...I'm a terrible excuse of a human being.

Bahaha, I love writing Gellert's post-1945-duel letters a bit too much...I love writing his bitterness, his anger, madness, everything that infuriates him. And I love writing him taking all his issues out on Albus. Well, you probably know that his letters sort of lose focus and direction the more he writes. You're right, he is trying to get a response out of Albus, but he's also trying to resolve issues within himself. Things may or may not be resolved by the end of the story, but Gellert definitely knows something Albus doesn't. Am I going to break your heart about telling you who killed Ariana? :P I might tell you. :P I might. :P

Aww aww I'm so elated and so so relieved that you liked the other version of the fairytale. It was one of the things I was unsure about including in the fic; I did make it up :P And kind of based it roughly on the structure and logic of traditional folk tales.

I too love circular motifs. And these two don't really have a serious go at each other until...well until the end of summer of course. Still got to clean up that chapter and rewrite their skirmish scene, so re-reading your review really reminded me to do that... *hides*

I'm glad you see her as more than a damaged girl in this fic; that was one of my main things to explore in this fic, along with Albus and Gellert's teenage relationship. And I definitely see Ariana as someone who could have possibly turned out as brilliant and intelligent as Albus, were she not so severely affected by childhood trauma. Despite this strange internal world she inhabits, she does have plenty of moments of lucidity and is quite capable of planning things out very precisely. I think of her as a bit of a strategist (just like Albus) and a bit of a mystic as well.

Thank you once again for this brilliant review, Laura! ♥ ♥ It means so much to me that you're reading / have read this story, and I'm always so grateful for your feedback.

Much love and thanks ♥ ♥


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Review #2, by wolfgirl17 

28th September 2014:
I can assure you that this chapter and the entire story is by no means too long or in any way boring. On the contrary, your in-depth exploration of this story takes my breath away and I must say, I'm yearning for more. Your portrayal of the incredibly complicated interactions and events surrounding the relationship between Albus and Gellert are utterly fascinating and just as I imagine they would be. I do very much like the way you are portraying Gellert as being of such a capricious nature and capable of such drastic shifts in mood with each breath. Your exploration of Albus too is intriguing and insightful. I have favourited this story and voted for you as having the story with the best descriptions in the Dobby Awards.
I can't wait to read more from you on this tale, and hope you will post again soon.
=) - Wolfgirl17

Author's Response: Hello wolfgirl17!

I have a load of other reviews to respond to, but when I read your lovely words, I felt that I absolutely /had/ to respond right away. Thank you so much! For reading, and taking the time to review, and favouriting! This story is pretty much my main WIP, so most of my writing energy goes into this fic, and to receive feedback like what you've just written is absolutely gratifying and amazing. It means so much to me that you love the complex interactions between Albus and Gellert; I was quite afraid to tackle their characters and their relationship when I was just beginning this story, and I'm glad you're liking them.

And lastly, THANK YOU very much for voting for this fic! ❤ I have actually completed the next chapter! But I need to edit it thoroughly first, and then it will be going into the queue! :)

Thank you again, love!


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Review #3, by The Misfit 

11th July 2014:
AH ALBUS KILLED ARIANA *sobs* Unless Gellert is just messing with him...? Aargh. Aargh. *falls apart*

I loved this. I loved everything, particularly the letter from Gellert (the mention of Albus not answering made me think of Fortress: An Anatomy and wonder whether the Nurmengard in the letters and in Fortress is one and the same? Either way, I adore how he tries to make Albus concede and confess to his faults, despite the fact he's equally to blame. Gellert seems to be one of those people who insist on dragging you down with them, and poor Albus for being victim to that.

Death and Ariana! Our interpretations of Death are different, and yet I prefer yours -- the three women remind me of the three monkeys (see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil) and the way they (he? It?) subtly manipulate Ariana to draw the Hallows and behave like they desire is clever. The fable of the girl and the three witches was great, and the way it connects to Ariana is quite interesting; I'm intrigued -- with you, I doubt it's coincidence ;)

Actually, while writing this review I couldn't help comparing the three boys to the Hallows -- Albus is the Elder Wand, with power over Ariana (and Aberforth, to some degree) and he manipulates that power by dosing his sister with potions; Gellert is the Resurrection Stone, because after his imprisonment, he's latching on to Albus and their time together. And the way he talks about conquering the world -- it's like he was trying to show off, like a seventeen-year-old would. Aberforth is the Cloak, because though he's semi-important in the story (being Albus and Ariana's brother), he has the unfortunate habit of making himself constantly absent :P Of course, I could just be overanalysing the characters post-midnight...

You don't have to worry about the chapter being too long -- in fact, i feel like the chapter should have been longer. You cover so much in your chapters, and yet you do it exceptionally fluidly that it's like drifting down a river reading the chapter: no many how many milestones you pass, you always feel like you've never gone very far when in reality you've gone miles... Excuse the weird water-related analogy (is that the right word?) -- it's all I can think of that connects right now :P

This chapter was amazing, as always ♥ Good luck with completing it by the end of the month!

House Cup Review 2014

Author's Response: Heeyy lovely! ♥

You know why it's so fun to write Gellert? Because nobody knows whether he's lying or telling the truth. Sometimes I sit back and think about this when I'm writing, "Wait, is this guy lying, or is he telling some obscure truth, or what?!" *sews you back together*

I've come to the decision that 'Fortress' and TDC are AU to each other! 'Fortress' is just too strange and out there (well, TDC's just got a bit strange as well in this chapter), and the two don't fit too well together. But they're the same characters, definitely! The same Gellert taunting Albus, and yes, he's vindictive in trying to drag Albus down with him. He's this vindictive ex-lover and muahaha I can't wait to write more about him. *evil purple devil*

I would love to read about your interpretation of Death! And that's a great way to see Death, the three monkeys! And clearly you've picked up that three-ness is kinda a recurring thing in this fic. Well, it's recurring outside of this fic as well, y'know, the pagan Triple Goddess, the Holy Trinity etc. I just plucked my inspiration from those concepts and wove them into the story.


*is in love with your flowing river analogy*


It really means a lot to me that you like this chapter and took the time to review! After all, this story is yours and is still being written for you (sorry for taking ages eep).


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Review #4, by marauderfan 

9th July 2014:
Teh!!! I know you posted this ages ago and I'm sorry it's taken me this long to get to it - but I finally have internet now, and thanks to the house cup, we get Hufflepuff points for this :D

So now for the chapter. As always, I really love reading the letters from Grindelwald - so twisted yet so entertaining. He knows which things to say to bother Albus the most, and since he has nothing else to do but wither away in his own prison, he writes them just to imagine how Albus will react and turn all these things over in his head. He's reminding Albus, as probably no one else would do, that despite the fact that Albus sent Gellert to prison and became famous as a symbol of good, that he's not that good. Essentially Gellert is saying "I know all your dark secrets". It's exactly the sort of letter that would haunt Albus' thoughts for a while, especially with that P.S. at the end. I can't decide whether Gellert actually knows this for a fact, or whether he's just saying it to make Albus feel guiltier.

Your portrayal of Ariana is so quirky and so wonderful. I feel like most of the things she does make sense, and then I realise that if it weren't from her POV there, she'd just be randomly throwing marbles at the wall and talking to herself. But in her vivid world with the three women and everything going on in her mind, I forget about that. And wow, the Deathly Hallows! I am so curious about that as well, particularly after Gellert's story, since those are the same three women. Death will not leave Ariana alone - it certainly makes her situation just a bit creepier than if they were just three random women she made up. And the Hallows symbol she drew on the skirting board - I think that'll come back in to the story eventually ;)

And what a story Gellert told! I have to admit I was looking for a moral in it too, and there doesn't appear to be one. It's a neat interpretation of the Deathly Hallows origin, and I wonder what Albus will make of it (because he loves riddles and will probably try and figure this one out, right?)

Also, random, but I loved how you described the light in the woods as 'syrupy', and the way the women's voices were like stagnant ponds or peeling tree bark. It's such unique, lovely description and I'm really jealous of your skills :D

I didn't think this chapter was too long! Your writing just grabs me in and I'm so absorbed in it that I don't notice the length. Anyway, I'm sorry it took almost a month for me to read this but it was an incredible chapter!!

For the House Cup 2014

Author's Response: Kristin!! HELLOO! :D

Gah, thank you for such a lovely detailed review! I'm so glad to see you back at this story. ♥

Gellert just won't let things go. And you're right, he has nothing better to do, anyway. All thanks to Albus. :P There was so much between the two, and now that it's all turned to poison for both of them. And the PS, hah! Sometimes I myself don't know whether Gellert is lying or not.

And ah, Ariana! I love your comment about how creepy it would be if she were actually imagining everything up, and you were an outsider looking in at her and seeing her toss marbles about and talk to an empty room.

As for the DH story, well here's where I start going a bit off the usual path for Albus/Ariana/Gellert etc. fics. I'm hoping that I can still make things believable and that most importantly, they'll tie together at the end! :P I'll probably be coming back to this story as the fic progresses. And yeah, Albus loves stories, legends, that kind of thing. I always imagine him as someone who's fascinated by narrative.

Aww, thank you for your squeeworthy comment on description! You write some lovely descriptive lines yourself! *hugs*

Thank you so much for this wonderful review, and I'm just really glad you're back! ♥ I should probably start writing the next chapter. :P


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Review #5, by patronus_charm 

6th July 2014:
House Cup 2014 Review!

Hey, teh, I love this task as it means I really can set up camp on your page :P

Ahahaha that letter ahahaha that letter. I canít say anymore other than Gellertís voice was perfect with its arrogant and gloating and it was just so him. Especially that final line though I canít help but wonder whether heís just saying that because of the circumstances or whether he really means it or notÖ.

The section with Ariana was so chilling and fitted in so well with the chapter title. Iím not entirely sure whether those people with her were real or visions, because you wrote them so well and they had this really haunting air about them. I think Iím leaning more towards visions giving Arianaís mental state too, but their spookiness added to the atmosphere of mystery and death so well and it was really great!

Albus and Gellertís scene was so fab as I had so many feels in it! I think I liked it because of its unpredictability which matched both of their characters so well too with the way it started off with Albus recommending him where to buy his fruit, to a discussion about power to them having a mini duel. Youíve just written both of them brilliantly with their ever changing nature and they really are so intriguing to read.

I loved the story about the girl and she had the Hallows and confronted Death! It was just written so well and so poetically too I felt as if I was being soothed or something and I really liked how you put a new twist on it. The girl reminded me of Ariana in a way and the way there were 3 witches there too, so it will be interesting to see if they link up or not.

I didnít think this chapter was too long or anything, I thought it was amazing and so beautiful! :D


Author's Response: Heeyy Kiana!

Great to see back here! Baha, I hope you find your camping/living quarters satisfactory? :P

Ah, that letter. Why is it so fun to write mean and bitter Gellert? Oh, right, because nobody ever knows whether he's telling the truth or not. :P :P

Ariana is another one who becomes more and more interesting to write. Sometimes I throw in random unplanned details as I'm writing; that girl has a mind of her own. There's a good chance that she's completely mad. And there's a good chance that maybe she's not mad.

Aww, I'm so glad you like the Albus/Gellert scene and it didn't drag and such. These two never stay still, and especially not when they're together; I myself am kinda tracking them carefully as they move through the story, make sure they don't run off and leave me floundering behind. I'm glad you find them intriguing!

And ah, the story. I hope to build more on this in future chapters!

Thank you so much for this lovely review, Kiana! Thanks for coming back to read this chapter. ♥


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Review #6, by CambAngst 

26th June 2014:
Hi, teh!

Another brilliant chapter in this awesome story! I'm really surprised that more folks haven't been actively following this. OK, maybe they are following it and they aren't reviewing, which would be a shame. Either way, I think anyone who's aspiring to write any story on HPFF -- especially one set in this era -- could learn a lot from the way you use language and imagery and your descriptions of physical sensations. You do an amazing job of conveying mood and moment using these things!

I love Gellert's letters from prison. They're high-minded and articulate, yet blunt. The Dumbledore he's addressing is exactly the flawed, regretful man that Harry meets in King's Cross station near the end of Deathly Hallows. Not that Gellert doesn't have plenty of flaws of his own. But in his letters he acknowledges many of them, and tries to hold Albus to task on doing the same. Interesting that even after his horrible misdeeds and his defeat at Dumbledore's hands, Gellert seems to view himself as a conscience of sorts to his former friend. A very angry, vindictive, mocking conscience, but nonetheless one who's trying to make Albus face his own worst tendencies and shortcomings.

I love the way that you tied Ariana's three women together with the three witches in Gellert's story. That was pretty brilliant. Death seems to speak to Ariana, which I guess isn't so much of a stretch for a story like this one. And she's unconsciously making the symbol of the Hallows. Weird, fascinating stuff!

I thought it was very sad that Albus isn't even following up to make sure Ariana eats any more. He leaves her food at her door and goes about his business. :(

I tend to agree that the meetings between Gellert and Albus are anything but accidental. In so many ways, Gellert reminds me of a young Tom Riddle. He charms Albus and gradually reels him in. Never revealing too much, always teasing with just a hint here and there of the true potential that lies within. I think he's also started to understand Albus's other interest in him. The one that Albus doesn't even necessarily recognize at this point.

Gellert's story was really well done, I thought. On one level, Gellert's right. There isn't some clever moral lying beneath the surface, waiting to be discovered. The point seems rather simple, actually. Death's gifts are not gifts at all. For those who have everything yet cannot be satisfied and happy -- the villagers -- there are no magical good outcomes. The poor girl tries to "fix" them and only succeeds in killing them. It's an odd story for Gellert to share, but one that I think might haunt Albus later.

Ariana's insights into Gellert's character seem spot-on. Too bad Albus doesn't listen to her more. I loved the little comment about chewing on her dolls. You have a really neat way of bringing her back to being a somewhat disturbed teenage girl whenever I start to lose sight of that.

I really enjoyed this and no, I didn't think it was too long. Awesome job!

Author's Response: Hey Dan!!

I feel awful for taking so long to respond to this brilliant review. But thank you so much for coming back and reading and reviewing, especially since this chapter had no feedback at all, but you came along and changed that. I think I don't have many followers because these aren't very popular characters to read about, at least in a longer WIP? Also, I'm not a particularly fast writer, which might cause readers to lose interest. But thank you so much once again for coming back!

Ooh, love the way you described Gellert's voice in his letters as a "vindictive, mocking conscience". He does indeed know Albus really well, and I'm of the opinion that he doesn't think Albus deserves his fame and victory and all, or at least that Albus is the betrayer of the bond the both of them once shared.

Aah, I'm so glad you like the way I linked up Ariana's "hallucinations" with the story! I was seriously worried about that one, and I'm going to keep on worrying about it, but you've given me absolutely encouraging comments on this. I'm also quite excited to develop this aspect of the story a lot more. And of course, this is where my fic possibly begins to twist and turn a little way off the canon track. But I don't think this will go AU at all.

Albus is odd, isn't he? I believe that right now he's completely unable to see beyond himself. Well, he understands his brother and sister, he knows them well, but there's a barrier between him and them (there's a barrier betwenn each of them, in fact), and he's just unable to be completely empathetic with them. At least right now. Gellert is a refreshing twist for him in his dreary new life, so of course, he seizes on to this bright spark and hopes he can find a kindred spirit, somehow. Something to alleviate the boredom of his life.

And as usual, I'm having a ball with writing Ariana. No, she's not the completely destroyed girl I often encounter in fic. Certainly not.

Thank you for this amazing review, Dan! It's wonderful to see your continued support for this fic! ♥


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