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6 Reviews Found

Review #1, by nott theodore 

19th June 2016:
Hello again! And now I get to return to L'optimisme, too :D I've been away from this story for far too long.

The opening section was so interesting! I loved the way that Albus really reflected on his summer with Gellert there, and we got a real sense of what that time had meant to him, and how close he had probably come to joining Gellert on the journey that took him across Europe. The contrast between the opening sections and the later sections is great. At the start we get to see Albus's thoughts and nostalgia directed towards Gellert intensely, in comparison with the scenes when he is trying to live his life and get on with things as normal. Even then, Gellert is always there in his thoughts, but hidden from view. The description in the opening was lovely, too.

I found the reflection on Hogwarts as a home really interesting! I know in the books Harry thinks of Hogwarts as a home, and of him and Snape and Tom Riddle all finding a home there when they'd had no other, so the difference for Albus was intriguing. I think it makes sense that he wouldn't feel that it was entirely a home for him, maybe because he couldn't be truly happy anywhere after that horrible summer which changed his life forever? I think the line later about teaching giving him a purpose, rather than him wanting to teach, is really accurate for him.

The interview with Professor Black was great, too - I think you captured his character so well from what we know of him in the books. He's the sort of person who wouldn't want to be seen to beg and would always want to seem superior, and that came across really well. I liked Albus's honesty with him, and now we know he's going to begin at Hogwarts teaching, so I'm intrigued to see how actually having the purpose he wants so badly affects his thoughts towards Gellert, if it does at all.

The final scene, when Albus ran into Aberforth, made me want to give poor Albus a hug. I can completely understand Aberforth's animosity, though - if Albus lost everything that summer for someone he loved, then Aberforth lost everything too, because of someone he hated. Seeing his brother after that could only bring painful memories. I know that in later years they managed to reconcile a bit, but I think that encounter was a real reminder of what Albus had lost. Not only were most of his family dead, and Gellert far away, but his brother wanted nothing to do with him. You wrote it really powerfully.

Sian :)
LGBTQA+ Review Event

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Review #2, by Red_headed_juliet 

21st March 2015:
I just noticed how all of the chapter titles are different for each of them. I think that goes to say allot about their respective personalities. Albus the romantic and gellert, the realist. I love the entire dichotomy you've created with such beautifully flawed characters. I can't wait for the showdown, though I'm very curious to see which perspective we'll get it from.

I do love how poetic you've made him in these selections. The language is so rich and beautiful, I can't skim through, I have to go slowly so that I don't miss anything. If I can't sit down and give my full attention, I can't read it. I do the same thing with old English. (That's a good thing, to me...)

I really like the idea of him not originally wanting to teach. I think it makes a lot of sense with everything we found out about his avoiding powerful positions.

I can't wait to read more!

Author's Response: Hi there! Thank you so much for stopping by again - I'm so happy to know you're still enjoying this! :)

Yeah, they each have their own theme for chapters titles :) I always have themes for chapter titles - it's a habit I can't seem to kick, haha, so I'm so glad you like it! And yeah, it is pretty indicative of their personalities - I tried to adjust the themes to each of them as much as I could without losing them from the overall sense. The showdown! Um, it's a long way off, I'm afraid, haha, and I'm not really sure either, at the moment. Sorry!

Thank you so much! I try to keep as closely to his voice as is possible - especially for Albus - because it's so him, you know? Like, it would be wrong to move too far away from it. I'm so glad you like it, though - I know it's a fairly strong voice in this story.

Thank you! :) I really wanted to avoid the whole 'Hogwarts is my home' thing, a la Harry and Riddle, so I tried to turn that on its head as much as I could :P It's both power, but also a genuine reluctance, I think. He still thinks he's meant for more than that, but it's something of a cage he can put himself in to keep himself from power, if that makes sense ;)

Thank you so so much for the lovely review, and I'm so glad you're excited for the next chapter! :)

Aph xx


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Review #3, by crestwood 

14th March 2015:
Hi, back again!

The subtle differences between Albus and Gellert's voices are really fun to pick apart.

What the first paragraph of this chapter proved to me was that even your metaphors have better descriptions than anything I write. I am really rooting for your OF you're working on to take off because I want more people to see this kind of writing. Fan fiction may attract a niche audience, but it's shame that people do not make exception for your writing. If only they knew what they were missing out on, I suppose. I, for one, can not wait to find you in my local bookstore. And yes, I say local, although you live nowhere near me. You are nothing but a world class talent and deserve the wide reaching fanbase of one. But, back to the story at hand.

I love the musings of these characters. I want to know them and just pick their brains about the various things they have to say about life. No doubt we could all learn something from either of the two men. My favorite part of this story is just reading where their minds will take us.

I suspect that Gellert would have succeeded in his plans if he could have convinced Albus to go forth with everything. I have almost no doubt in my mind of it. If the three way duel had never happened, I don't think that Albus could have resisted the allure of Gellert. He was obviously so very in love with him and completely under his influence. You write this fact better than anything. Pure, unadulterated love shines through your words. It astounds me that you don't think of yourself as much of a romance writer because you are surely amazing when it comes to writing about love.

It's interesting that Albus doesn't refer to Hogwarts as home--as so many people do in canon--and because of Gellert. (It's always because of Gellert, isn't it?)

It's funny to think that Albus, of all people, would be nervous about an interview at Hogwarts. I'd say that he's sort of a shoe-in for the job.

This Professor Black sounds fun. I tend to rather like people with a bit of a dramatic flair. Birds of a feather flock together and all that.

It's strange reading about Albus on this side of the desk. This interview is quite an entertaining one. I agree that I'd think Albus had some sort of ulterior motive to wanting the job. He seems much too young, much too accomplished.

The run in with Aberforth was particularly tense. The fact that he seems to be so poor actually puts things into perspective. His brother is out doing so well for himself and he is dressed in clothes that are ragged at the edges. Most would not walk away from said brother as he did. But Aberforth was never one to rely upon Albus.

The last line in all of these chapters is always so great. I'm obsessed with this story and I really can't wait until the next chapter is here. For now, I'll find some other things to finish our swap with!

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Review #4, by dirtydeedsdonedirtcheap 

13th March 2015:
but I would have done almost anything you asked as long as you would continue lying next to me,

This is what I meant in my other review talking about what if’s. Albus was so knee deep in love he would have done anything Gellert wanted him too. They would have destroyed everything together.

Love is powerful. It makes you do crazy things.

I never thought about Albus being overqualified to teach but it’s true. The scene was definitely different and eye opening when he went to go interview for the position. It explained something I’ve never quite given a second thought of.

Author's Response: Hi again! :) Thanks so much for stopping by again!

Albus is definitely very, very deeply in love and very easily affected by Gellert, I think. And yeah, they would have been absolutely unstoppable together - though I dunno if they'd have destroyed everything... it depends on whether or not Albus could have influenced Gellert in turn ;) But yeah, there would have have been no stopping them at all, whatever they did.

It definitely, definitely does! Plus, it's fun to see Albus as fallible :P

You know, I never really thought about it either, but when I came to planning the chapter and planning that bit, it sort of became very obvious to me that he was. I've seen other people get round this problem in different ways, but I liked the idea that he was too good for Hogwarts more. It sort of fits in better with his whole 'keeping myself out of trouble' thing he mentions in canon with Hogwarts.

Thank you so much for the lovely review! :)

Aph xx


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Review #5, by pottered  

22nd February 2015:
"of what we could've been hurts." ):
He still loves Gellert, it hurts my heart. My heart aches for them.
I really liked Albus' interview part and then his run in to aberforth which was quite sad. I love the way Albus calls Gellert his darling, it makes me happy and sad at the same time, and my heart heavy.
I loved the chapter, and am waiting for more! I'm absolutely in love with this story; Gellert and Albus, and especially your writing.
-m (: x

Author's Response: Hi there - thank you so so much for the reviews! I'm pretty stunned that you went through the entire thing - it's long, I've got to admit! - so thank you so much for it, I know it must have taken a pretty long time! :)

Yeah, he really does... I kinda wanted in this to show a progression of feelings - towards simple acceptance that it's going to take time for him to get over Gellert, rather than sort of trying to force it and getting frustrated when it doesn't happen, you know? But then, that's sort of equally sad...

Thank you! :) I'm so glad you liked the interview - it was so much fun to write! :P Aberforth is a pretty difficult character for me - such a change from Albus and Gellert, haha - but he'll be back soon enough ;)

Darling.. hehe, Albus just had to have a pet name for Gellert :P And darling fitted best. Everyone else gets 'dear' and 'my dear', Gellert alone gets 'darling' :)

Gah, thank you so so much for all of the reviews - they were all amazing - and thank you so much for all the lovely, lovely things you said in them! I'm just so glad you're enjoying this! :)

Aph xx


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Review #6, by BellaLestrange87 

17th February 2015:
This is for the Blue vs. Bronze review battle!

Do I get first review on this? I think I do!

As I read more and more of this, I keep wondering how people ever chose one quote - from just one of your stories - to nominate for the Dobbys. This whole story is beautiful poetic prose and it's just awesome and so relaxing to read because it's so pretty. (I feel like that last sentence made absolutely NO sense at all but it's the first day back after a long weekend and I lost my brain.)

I love how Albus can look back on his life and relate it to these awesome quotes that you come up with. How do you do it? I swear, if I want something poetic I have to quote lines from a poem. And his reaction to Grindelwald's 'together' pronouncement for me was revealing - he was clearly in love with Grindelwald, and yet he was unable to articulate it and say 'I was in love' (or something poetic that means it). Either he's ashamed or he's not quite sure exactly what love is and he just knows that he feels happy with Grindelwald. Until, of course, THAT day.

Albus seems to be alternating here between 'it looked like a good idea at the time but not anymore and I'm glad we didn't end up actually doing it' and 'I miss you. Everything about you.' Methinks he needs to visit Grindelwald before he dies.

His admission about Hogwarts both surprised me and made sense. If he truly was devastated by Grindelwald, even home doesn't feel like home, and if he didn't consider Hogwarts home in the first place, its attractiveness probably also diminished. Besides, I doubted he originally saw Hogwarts the same way Harry did. And that description of nerves is perfect.

I think the password to the Headmaster's office says a lot. First, the fact that it's not some lighthearted sweet shows that it's clearly a very different time than in Harry's day. Second, I think 'perfidious', coupled with Albus's thoughts about whether more people than Aberforth had disowned him, shows just what frame of mind he's in. Third, the fact that the Headmaster is Phineas Nigellus Black suggests that maybe 'perfidious' is the frame of mind PNB is in, or the attitude he holds. (Knowing the rest of the Black family, I think the second one is more likely.) Fourth, maybe it's foreshadowing of this job interview?

Hmmm... Phineas Nigellus Black seems an interesting character. I think I can tell why Sirius didn't like him all that much. The fact that he didn't really like Albus because he was clever doesn't really sit all that well with me, and this job interview seems more like two people about to fight sizing each other up than an actual job interview.

So Aberforth is the barman of the Hog's Head already? I didn't expect that. I honestly thought that he'd go do something else for a few years and then take it up. But their utterly disastrous meeting shows exactly why they don't meet up for drinks when Dumbledore's teaching and talk. Your description of him, and his run-down clothes, was perfect. The Hog's Head is never portrayed as being well-off or busy in the books, so it wouldn't exactly make a lot of money, and Aberforth woul have to fall back on whatever family fortune the Dumbledores possessed.

I loved this chapter like all the others and I can't wait for the next one!

~Olivia

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