12 Reviews Found

Review #1, by cherry_pop94 

27th December 2015:
Oh Scorpius Malfoy. I have missed him. I cannot imagine the pain Rose is going through. I cannot even begin to comprehend how much it must hurt her to see him alive.

God I hate Matt. Go away. Scorose forever. I mean, I understand that Rose needs him and he's not the worst, but Scorpius. He's still so funny. I did a weird laugh/cry.

And more bromance moments between Scorpius and Albus. I love them too. I just want everyone to be happy. I just want Rose and Scorpius to run off into the sunset together followed by Albus and Eva and Selena can just float above them all spreading sassy snark with Methuselah.

Sorry I'm weird.


Author's Response: I was really worried when going through the chapters after Selena was abducted, because without Selena OR Scorpius, the gang are really bloody MORBID. Return of Scorpius, even this different, edgier, darker Scorpius, was like a breath of fresh air to brighten and lighten absolutely everything.

D'aww, poor Matt. He doesn't handle this situation as well as he might, but yeah, he's the fly in the ointment. Or, really, he's not; the whole situation is a bigger obstacle to Rose and Scorpius than him. Hell, Rose and Scorpius are bigger obstacles to their own happiness than Matt! But Scorp remains a taunting little troll. I do love him too.

If only they could all get those happily ever afters! I think Selena would pretty much adore getting to literally look down on everyone, snarking at their life choices while being fed peeled grapes by Methuselah. Or Matt AND Methuselah. One of them feeding her peeled grapes, the other fanning her. You know, that's probably her ideal endgame...

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Review #2, by water_lily43175 

4th December 2015:
Okay, so before I read this chapter, I'm going to try to review the previous one properly now I've gotten all my excitement out of the way. Or at least, there are a few things that deserve to be mentioned from that chapter before I continue.

Firstly, Eva's observation of how Al and Rose in particular have changed is almost more heartbreaking than it having happened in the first place. She, the most corrupt and morally ambiguous of them all, is the one who mourns the loss of their innocence. And there's something so lovely about that.

Also the fact that Albus fixed her and she broke him is just GUH.

And as for Scorpius. WELL. Where's he been since he's been alive again, what's he been doing, why is he with Thane, what are they doing, why is whatever they're doing HIS job ... I hope this chapter goes on to answer at least some of those questions. As for why he's alive, I would imagine there was some hocus pocus to get Lethe back, given that Lethe is doing its thing, but the hows and whos of that are unanswered.

And ... I'm ecstatic that he's back. OBVIOUSLY. It's always crushing when a big character dies, and Scorpius was absolutely the life of this trilogy, not because of him on his own, but because the effect his death has had on everyone else. Without Scorpius, Rose and Albus have become shells of their former selves, and while they may have patched themselves up in time, it was all too sad to see them so broken.

But ... what happens next? I mean, the guy they were grieving isn't dead, but they can't just go back to how things used to be. I don't WANT them to do that. I kind of feel like I'm giving Albus more leeway in this, and I don't know whether I SHOULD be, but a lot of his pain does seem to come from his own self-blame and confusion and heartbreak, and I don't know how broken he'd have been at Scorpius' death if he hadn't felt like he'd caused it. But Rose ... I mean, she clearly can't live without the kid. And at nineteen that's not healthy. And I don't think falling back into his arms will help ANYTHING. I don't think that's what will happen, because aside from any sort of character decisions I trust you better than to just have Scorose magically happen again as though the past two years hadn't happened. But ... I think Rose needs to find a version of herself that can live and love life and be happy without Scorpius in the picture, before Scorpius comes back into it.

Does any of that make sense?

So. This chapter. Cracking first sentence. Absolutely should have won Best Quote Dobby, I am nominating that next September.

I just love the dynamics at play here. Albus is already entirely trusting of Scorpius and so will listen to Thane because Scorpius apparently trusts him. Eva wouldn't trust Thane as far as she can throw him. Matt's obviously completely furious at what's going on because it's SCORPIUS. And Rose ... yeah, trying to convince herself it's not him so she doesn't have to feel anything, because these days she's just numb. It makes sense. And it's fascinating to read.

And ... I don't think this chapter actually answered many, if ANY, of the questions I had. Because there's clearly something that Scorpius isn't saying here. WHY couldn't he come back? WHY did he leave Albus and Rose to continue to grieve, when there is absolutely no way the Scorpius we know would dream of putting them through that? SO MANY questions, and the only way to answer them is to read on!

Although I think I'm getting too tired to review properly but I can't stop reading so you may have to settle for a couple of sub-par reviews as I struggle on until my eyes refuse to stay open any more. EK.

Author's Response: Eva made for a fascinating lens through which to view the gang. It wasn't intentional, but she's the one who's mastered self-awareness while they haven't, so she can SEE like nobody else could - except, maybe, Selena.

I think you're onto something with Albus being more broken because of the HOWS of Scorpius' death, while those don't really MATTER to Rose so much. She never set out to crush the Council or seek vengeance, while Al absolutely was motivated by personal guilt. Remove the personal guilt and he's in a much better place to recover. Rose? Any tragic, sudden death would have messed her up like this, and you're ABSOLUTELY right, she's nineteen. This isn't healthy. Rose needs to find who SHE is before she could be with ANYONE.

I'd want to edit that first sentence, it's a LITTLE overlong and breaks the rule of three. :D

WHY Scorpius didn't come back is, as you know, a very important question.

With all these reviews to go through, some short ones will not come amiss!!

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Review #3, by fizzingwizzbies 

3rd March 2015:
This story just goes from strength to strength (how on earth do you do it?!?) I can't wait to find out what happens! All the characters seem to have changed so much (apart from maybe Scorpius atm) yet somehow, it doesn't feel too drastic or forced. I really like your characterisation of Albus, and he is far more interesting in this book which is pretty fab and dramatic to read.. Thank you for creating such an indepth story, your brain must be very hectic with all the plots to sort out! I am so so excited for the next chapter and more of Rose's reaction!!

Author's Response: They have changed a lot, haven't they? It does make me sad, too, when I check out older chapters of Starfall or Ignite and see them doing things like punning at golems or fist-bumping in fights - but then this is all mostly Scorpius so I kind of killed the joy when I killed him. It would be nice if they could recover SOME of their happiness.

Albus has come a long way; he needed to grow beyond the good-natured foil for Scorpius, and finally it's happening.

Thanks for reviewing!

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Review #4, by RelentlessFire 

28th February 2015:
Well, I knew it was coming, and I even proved it when Starfall ended. I love how you make every character play this game.
Update soon

Author's Response: Yus, a few people saw what I was doing there. It's fine; if no readers spotted my clues, it would mean I wasn't laying the groundwork right. Thanks for reviewing!

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Review #5, by yellowpetals 

27th February 2015:
So I know I just wrote like 1000 words in a review, but after your answer I felt like writing a few hundreds more. This is why I don't review in general - I can become annoying!

So I reread the chapter where they were judged in the tomb before getting the chalice to get a better view on the characters- and while the message for Albus is clear, what about the one for Rose? What is it about?
" ‘That which matters most. I am not here to illuminate,’ the Guardian repeated. ‘And still we see the child who values recklessness over wisdom, righteousness over accuracy, blind heroics over cautious knowledge.’

My question about Rose was more on why she is going through Scorpius's death by blocking out all feeling, rather than how she is processing his comeback. She needs time for the second, and as you said, hope has abandoned her two and a half years ago. But why does she choose to become so cold, for so long, so detached? As I said, I think it is a phase, and in a hypothetical situation where Scorpius didn't get back, she would in my opinion overcome this stage. But, I was thinking, based on something I recently read, that being treated as a victim, makes the person reluctant to heal their pain and get better, but rather wallow in it, focus on it even unconsciously, until it defines them. As you mentioned, pain needs to be healed. It would always be part of her now. But for those 2 years, I think it completely governed her and she let herself go. So what I am saying is, everyone in her life let her do this to herself, including and maybe mostly Matt, by treating her as a victim and letting her do so too. At least, this is the feeling I get. In this sense, that is why I think Selena has managed to cope with her loss relatively well - there was no time for her to be the victim for too long. Her "friends" never knew what she went through, then the Thane and chalice hunt started.

I think I get it now why readers generally misunderstand Matt. You know more about him since he lives in your head, but we know only that he was in love with Rose, and made "a pass on her" even when Scorpius was there, then right after his death and Albus's leaving, Matt was there to pick up the pieces of Rose, and then, even at that early point, we knew Selena saw in his actions a desire to win Rose. Then 2 years later they are together. So from this point of view, it's hard to think of his selflessness in helping Rose in the beginning with little hope of anything romantic going on between them. He might come across as a "vulture" as somebody said. Even those of us who like him, can't see the extent of his virtue in this situation. As I said before though, it seems to me he looks at Rose too much as a victim to be protected by him at all times, not as a real person who can sometimes take care of themselves. Biggest thing of all - hiding his involvement with De Sable. It would be really much healthier for Matt to stop worrying about Rose so much, and put himself first for some time. It would be difficult for him, though, as he is not a very selfish person at all, very loyal, a bit of a worrier in general, and sort of too dedicated to what he loves (read obssessed). But he'll get there.

This randomly reminded me of how Hugo was reading Rose "For whom the bell tolls" - this is why it seemed appropriate even if it wasn't - it's not sheltering her from the pain, it's making her face it. Well, if Hugo was taking care of Rose through her loss, things would be different :D.

Finally, from the little we saw as an explanation, I can understand why Scorpius did not come back right in the beginning - he has never been the most confident of people - his mum, dad, Miranda, he is just ridden with self-doubt. So seeing Rose has moved on, not being able to find Albus- it was not easy. Then again, there is certainly more to the story and I can't wait to find it out.

Author's Response: (yay I love discussing this)

I think you're very right about Rose. Selena got past her grief, though her feelings for Methuselah were very real; Rose did not. Selena had to cowboy up for the Chalice hunt, and she DID get closure in Ager Sanguinis, which was unique, but it meant her emotions went to places beyond grief. She had to be afraid for her friends, focused on Thane, etc, etc.

All Rose had was grief, and Hogwarts was not the place to handle it. In a way, Albus was much the same. There's one thing which is really scary about loss, and that's NOT grieving, or at least, it's learning to live with that grief. I think Rose was, in some ways, too afraid of accepting Scorpius was gone, to ever really get over her grief.

Certainly Matt was not the BEST person at helping her move on, though I don't think that was at all intentional. I think he just wasn't fully emotionally equipped to do so. Perhaps, loving her, he was incapable of providing necessary tough love. Ironically, they might have come together in a healthy relationship. Any part of him that let Rose indulge her grief for his own ends was, thus, self-sabotaging, though I would maintain that was a very subconscious, guilty part of him.

I *do* think Matt gets less of the benefit of the doubt than some characters; some of my readers do seem to get where I'm coming from with him perfectly fine. BUT it's possible I could do a more clear job on explaining him and his perspective. I think I write him about as clear as I write, say, Selena and Scorpius, but readers are more likely to feel sorry for them, and less likely to feel sorry for Matt. Also his support of Rose was messed up; not manipulative, not really - it came from a very honest place, but was not (as you've identified above) necessarily the best thing for her. The guy could really do with putting himself first, you're not wrong. I will, though, genuinely evaluate how I'm representing Matt in the future; if I need to better express/explain his feelings, history, motivation (without devolving into the dreaded Telling over Showing).

I think Hugo was being thoughtless and insensitive when he read Rose that book, despite his good intentions. But I think Rose could have possibly benefitted from the odd bout of insensitivity!

Scorpius isn't telling everything. BUT, you're right, he's got pretty complicated abandonment issues, and a part of him would have been afraid of coming back to a world where his old place - as Rose's boyfriend, as Albus' best mate - was very much gone.

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Review #6, by yellowpetals 

27th February 2015:
As somebody said before me, the opening line was sublime :). And as you promised, this chapter gave us some (not too satisfactory) answers and even more questions.

So first up, something you said in a review response about Rose being destroyed if Scorpius's comeback is a trick kind of surprised me. To be honest, I had never considered this, but as it was brought up I did, and in the beginning I wasn't really sure if I agreed. Up until now, even in her grieving state, I thought that she is stronger than that. I didn't think she'd to give up on life completely (and she hasn't), but I was also expecting her to shake off all the coldness she is protecting herself in, and feel something. And I was expecting this to happen as a matter of fact and my expectation was not at all connected to any possible resurrections. So in other words, I was overestimating Rose and underestimating her grief. Not that I see anything against both of them as they are, I just didn't "get it". Cutting to the point, my question is: Why does Rose react to Scorpius's death so .. unreasonably? I mean it in the way she is using Matt, and how she is really refusing to help herself and let herself get over it, and how she is refusing to acknowledge that there is a problem in how she is handling things so far. My “updated” understanding of her is that she is afraid she would be betraying Scorpius if she let him go, then she is also stubborn so keeping it up is not a big issue, and she is also not that nice or selfless a person to not do what she is doing to Matt in the first place. She is nice and good, but not that good - after all he wants it too. But then again, I expected her rationality to extend to her feelings, rather than just logical thinking. So have I missed something even more fundamental and as a result, completely misunderstand the character? Right now I can say that Rose has a lot to do to earn her happy ending.

Talking about understanding characters, I thought I had a grasp on Matt. I sympathise with him, but also believe that where he is now is his own doing as much as anybody else’s, so I wouldn't say poor Matt and wouldn't think he'd appreciate being pitied anyway. In my comment on last chapter I accused him of being a bit unfeeling in the face of the reveal and being all rational and responsible about it and seriously questioning its legitimacy. He's keeping this up, which is again perfectly rational. But it is also kind of an insult to his intuition (I will call it that, but in my opinion it is again very logical even if subconscious), which I am sure he possesses as any smart guy like him does. So now I believe he is in sort of a denial about it, which is fine and understandable. Also, who wouldn't be afraid about what would happen in such a situation as that- it's the most natural thing in the world. My question is: Would Matt rather Scorpius's comeback didn't happen? In other words how good of a person is he? And I am not asking this to judge him in any way, because I believe there are not that many people out there who, were they in the same situation, would be able to say straight away they want Scorpius alive and have not a single doubt in their mind. And the question is not having Scorpius not die, but specifically about the comeback. He certainly wouldn't want Rose to go through what she did. I do think that if it was up to him to decide on the resurrection, he would bring Scorpius. However, that wouldn't be without any regrets, in my opinion, (even if they are small and evil and are locked away never to see the light of day). After all, he is a good person. So just how good is he? When he is reflecting on what just happened is he thinking - what a happy and miraculous occurrence!

Third, the Selena glimpse was amazing, very mysterious and tortured. I was wondering what the meaning of "the new torments she thought were just in her head" is? Is that being abducted and suffering through it? Is it Methuselah, which would mean she suffered from something in her childhood? Or is it maybe the Matt thing, where she "lost" not only a friend but the promise of a new beginning? The last might be a bit of a stretch but was the first that came to my mind. I vividly remember how desperate she was for him right after Ager Sanguinis and how firmly she believed that together they can come through it.

Finally, somebody was saying that Albus is proving he didn't learn anything from the Eva situation. While it might be true to some extent, he is now in the complete bliss stage of acceptance, which is normal for me. I am sure he'll get more prudent and level-headed after some time. But then again, it is Scorpius and he is alive and right now this is all that matters to him. After all he just got his brother back! Also, he knows it is Scorpius - they have spent half their lives together as best friends. So he knows to trust his intuition.

Thank you for the swift update :).

Author's Response: Some great analysis in this review! :-)

The Rose thing - 'destroyed' as a word is vague, but if she had the return of Scorpius dangled in front of her, only for it to be taken away, she would hope, she would get excited, and then she would be crushed all over again and it would be a HORRENDOUS set-back. Possibly leaving her worse than she was when she originally lost Scorpius. Beyond the point of no return? I don't know. But it would torment her. That much is certain.

For the rest, I point out that this is her reaction within hours of the news, not yet being convinced it's real. Even if it IS real, her instincts know something is wrong - he's working with Thane, after all, so there is more to be found out, more to be understood. The situation is fluid and it is unstable.

This makes it terrifying. Grief is horrible and complex but it is honest. A world without Scorpius is one she hates and doesn't know how to live in, but she's been in it for two and a half years. This world? Has Scorpius changed? Has he become a monster? Is this just a trick, will it be taken away? There are so many variables and she knows it is so easy for her to be hurt by them. Change is terrifying, and the best way to get through this uncertainty is hope. Rose is deathly afraid of hope, because hope lets her down.

So instead of hoping, she runs to Matt, because that's what she does when she's hurt. More than ever before, because Matt is what blocks out all other feeling. She tells him she won't leave him, even if that shouldn't be the first issue with Scorpius' return, because she doesn't want him to go, because that will leave her completely lost.

Rose probably hasn't been herself for the entirety of Oblivion so far. We shall see what happens when she has a chance to process Scorpius' return - and when she's not got Selena to worry about on top of that.

Matt's first thought, seeing Scorpius back, was for Rose. Not 'will I lose Rose?' but 'what will this do to Rose?' So of course he worries it's a trick. And then he worries Scorpius is changed. He basically worries all the same stuff she does. He's starting to move out of denial about his relationship, though it's one step at a time and there are more fish to fry right now, but he's really not got around to questioning what Scorpius' return means to him - as himself, not as someone who cares for Rose. It may take some time before we delve into his feelings there, but we will at some point. But no, there's no world where Matt wouldn't want Scorpius (a well-adjusted Scorpius) to come back. For Rose, if nothing else, even if the two guys were at best indifferent to one another.

Oddly the Selena snippet was one of the most recent things I've written in Oblivion. And I say 'oddly' because I polished off Chapter 22 yesterday (first draft). I wrote a Selena scene which made me go 'OH MY GOD SHE NOW MAKES SO MUCH MORE SENSE'. This chapter was already in the queue. I had to GO BACK and write in this Selena sequence; not that it didn't cover stuff I knew was going on, but I suddenly had a better handle on it. Even if I wish I'd taken a bit more time to polish the prose of it a little more! But yeah, it may be a while before we fully explore what's going on in Selena's head (I'll discuss pacing hell in a few chapters, I think), but she's in for a rip-roaring ride. Yet again, Selena Rourke has ignored my plans and plots and is rushing off to do her own BLOODY thing.

I would entirely agree with your assessment of Albus/Scorpius. He believes the argument, and where Rose chooses to FREAK OUT, Albus chooses to accept. And accepting makes him deliriously happy. Even with his changes, he is a man who lives more by his gut than by cold reason, and his gut tells him to believe (just as his gut told him to run off and be in pain for 2 years). We'll see more nuanced reactions as time goes by, and it will absolutely not undo the last 2 years, but at this second, Albus is kind of reverting.

Thanks for reviewing!

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Review #7, by scorprose 

27th February 2015:
Love the opening line.
Too sad about Rose s condition right now. Hope she understands her own feelings. Cant even begin to imagine how much it would hurt scorpius to see her with Matt. All that pain and frustration is bound to resurface once they stay togather. This doent help any better that scorpius is still hiding things.Waiting impatiently for the Scorp-Rose face to face talk. Will their love stay strong to ride out of this storm. Dying to see them back togather.

Author's Response: Thanks! Rose doesn't understand anything right now, but it's still about two, three hours since Scorpius returned and she's had to shunt it a bit to one side to continue planning for Selena and now she just doesn't know WHAT to think.

Scorpius is indeed hurt to see them together, though at his best he would never have wanted Rose alone forever. Theirs will be a long and winding road.

Thanks for reviewing!

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Review #8, by thegreatcatsby 

27th February 2015:
Rose and Scorpius...
Matt and Selena...
Al and Eva...
I ship it!
/wiggles eyebrow for no particular reason

Author's Response: But who makes it to endgame? ;)

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Review #9, by WHimsical Diva 

27th February 2015:
I really don't understand why Matt gets so much hate. He's been truly selfless when it comes to Rose, and has unconditionally loved her and always been there for her, even when SHE hasn't treated him very well. So yeah, he started a relationship with her after Scorp's death, but the thing is, had the roles been reversed, had it been Matt that Rose had been dating in Starfall and Matt that had died and Scorpius who'd then started a relationship with Rose, I'm pretty sure most people would've been cheering. If anything, it's MATT who deserves better than Rose, it's Matt who deserves to be loved wholly by someone.

Scorpius, to be honest, was kinda annoying in this chapter. Also equally baffling is Albus's blind trust in Scorpius. Hasn't he learnt anything after the events with Eva in Starfall? His biggest weakness appears to be his blind faith and trust in Scorpius, and I really hope at some point in this story, these two truly fall apart and disagree. That's never happened in this trilogy, and their friendship is another that's broaching the too perfect to be believable realm.

I'm kinda liking Eva more and more in this story. It's also interesting that someone as competent and incisive as her has this big blind spot when it comes to Albus. Even when she's calling him out, he somehow harks back to her betrayal, effectively shutting her up and nullifying her argument. He's still very naive and somehow unfit to lead the gang, IMHO. For their own sake, I hope either Thane leads them, or else hope Scorpius has picked up enough skills to be their leader.

Anyway, update?

Author's Response: Matt hasn't really been THAT selfless for Rose (what is wrong with me, when people criticise him I defend him, when they defend him I criticise him, I AM CONTRARY AUTHOR). I've settled for 'Rose used him, and he LET himself be used' as the summary, but YES, he absolutely wanted the best for her, and that included a long time supporting her knowing she might NEVER look at him romantically, EVER. He accepted that and stood by her anyway, so the fact that he didn't insist she remain romantically chaste FOREVER shouldn't really be held against him.

And I agree, if Scorpius were in his shoes, I imagine people would be upset by sad Rose, but they'd be wanting Rose to see the better situation, not LEAVE him.

And I ABSOLUTELY agree that Matt deserves to be loved by someone who wants him, REALLY him. And to love someone like that.

Assuming you mean Scorpius was annoying in the scene with Matt, some things don't change. When backed into a corner, Scorpius will still be an ENORMOUS... I cannot think of a 12+ word here.

Albus' path of 'dealing with Scorpius' return' is not over. His knee-jerk reaction just goes back to his core, which is to love and adore Scorpius and be so pleased he's back that it overrides pain. Problem with pain is that you don't override it, you heal it. I would point out that they HAVE had major a falling out, in Ignite (Chapter 20), and it was Albus who said, 'I've had enough of you treating me like this,' when Scorpius hurt Al because Scorp was in pain. And since then Scorpius stopped doing it to Albus. Buuut we haven't seen the last of their ups and downs in this story, so you may get your wish.

Al's kind of reverting to leadership in that he can mediate arguments, but the moment his own feelings get involved, he's still too bristle-y to deal with it. Leadership's going to become a bit of a round robin for the next while.

I will probably put the next chapter in the queue over the weekend. :P Thanks for reviewing!

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Review #10, by whykay 

27th February 2015:
I expected Rose and Scorpius to talk. Rose is having such hard time, yet I don't really like people using others. At times like these, the true shades of people come out - that she only needs Matt and that she won't leave him for Scor. Something that should have been different and unthinkable if she truly loved Matt. He is just a convenience. But I don't think Matt cares for more than that - he didn't seem especially perturbed - especially as his feelings towards Selena are coming to surface and his hate towards Scor. I suspect Rose is second guessing her moving on and the timing and is finding the need to reinforce what she and Matt have.

Speaking of whom, when will the Voice be revealed? - if it is still Gabe and De Sable - Matt will be gutted. Totally. Which is not something you will intend for his character I think, especially with the promise of something with Selena. I believe your resolution does not involve them settling for consolation prizes. I think it will go this way - Scorpius and Rose; Matt and Selena; Albus and Eva may not happen - you are right - they can't work in their real worlds. So Eva may pass on. I wonder about your comment on the slash warning - I presumed that automatically comes with the std language warnings.

Scorpius - well this guy disappointed me - how the hell did he think not reaching for Rose when came back was better?? Eva is right - they are hiding something vital. Please don't tell me he is not back for good. And I hope he does speak to Rose soon. She needs a break.

Back to the voice - it first appeared after Scor's fall. If the Council commissioned the retrieval of Chalice and Scorpius - then it cannot be Gabe or De Sable because they are working against the Council of Thorns. Since this is a known character - it cannot be the Golden Trio - they would NOT put their children through nonsense and are likely to not go rogue. Same with the Anguisverse characters. It might be Draco or Lillian. Draco - I believe it was said (in Starfall, Thane to Eva?) that he was not that high up the Council to influence this way or the other and I frankly don't seem him as someone wielding so much power and the Voice didn't just SEEM like him. So it leaves us with Astoria, a rogue Lillian - the Voice definitely said Nat worked with them for the last nine months or so - Lillian looks to be the one as of now. I LOVE this puzzle. It's like looking at one of my cases.

Hope Selena is found - cuz the entire gang has corked up all the emotional wrangling required till and so that she is found - keeping it in longer will likely lead to explosion, wont' it?

Author's Response: I kind of expected Rose and Scorpius to talk. In that, when I had a very broad plan laid out and I knew Scorpius would be picked up at this point, I assumed it would include a Rose/Scorpius conversation. Instead it comes later, mostly for pacing reasons. The emotional fallout of Scorpius' return is huuuge, and if I dealt with every element of it before moving on with the Selena Rescue plot, we'd see Selena again some time around Chapter 30 (seriously, I will have so much to say about pacing as we crawl through future chapters).

Rose is clinging to Matt even harder, because that's been her standard reaction for ages. In the face of change, she's just stuck to old habits. We'll see what happens when she's not reeling. Matt WAS pretty perturbed - he realised, 110%, that her feelings for him aren't real, with the revelation that if she'd EVER tell him she loved him, that was the time, and it didn't happen. He's focusing a lot on Selena, but he's also giving up a lot of his delusions about Rose.

Couldn't tell you when the Voice will be revealed! Loving the theorising and playing with the clues. Obviously I won't saya thing!

Slash does not come with the standard advisories. This was picked intentionally.

Scorpius has his reasons for staying away, or at least, he thinks he has his reasons.

You're very right that everyone's corking in their feelings because they have to work to find Selena (which is a reason why only so much of the fallout of Scorp's return can be handled right now; Rose, for one, doesn't dare go to pieces). So we will be marching on with the attempted rescue very soon! Whether or not they succeed...

Thanks for reviewing!

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Review #11, by jack 

26th February 2015:
I am glad to see Al`s reaction here. Eva is great. als conversations with both Eva and Scorpius were good. I feel bad for Rose. Matt was great. He obvious both outcomes. I cant wait untill Salena is rescuds. I hope soon all seven of them are confronted with the truth as they have been living in denial in some form for years

Author's Response: The whole gang has been messed up for a while - as a group, as individuals. Denial is not just a river in Egypt for these people. Oblivion will see them starting to tackle this damage and how/if they can get past all of it. I gotta tell you, they're still surprising me, as I write this, with their emotions and opinions. They'll do or say something and I'll go, 'Oh, I didn't anticipate that,' and it'll still make perfect sense and I'll kick myself for not seeing it sooner.

Thanks for reviewing!

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Review #12, by Solana14 

26th February 2015:
Wow, really feels good to be "back" for good! Back to the series anyway. When I saw the new chapter I was so excited as this isn't normally a day of the week when we get an update, so ...

I found myself gritting my teeth over and over when Rose was begging Matt to stay with her. She's so incredibly screwed up. Here, at least, Matt at least made the right decision to leave her alone. And I get the impression he's finally starting to question the health of this relationship. Rose has so used him all this time, and he's taken full advantage of that. I so can't wait for these 2 to finally come to terms with that -- and separate.

That said, the teeth-gritting continued when Matt started beating up on Scorpius. And you gave one important hint as to his motivations all this time when you had Scorpius ask if Matt would be more angry finding out it WAS him. I feel he would; I think he's feeling threatened because of Rose. Sorry, as I said, just not a fan of this arrogant upstart. He now thinks he's got a real grip on Rose -- or he's afraid he never really did and wants one.

And Thane? I'm not sure I can trust him, either. Why should we? But if Eva can rehabilitate, then ... so can Thane, I guess. Of course, the group isn't expected to exactly trust him outright. I'm looking forward to more and more explanation of just what he and Scorp have been doing for 8 months, and the real reason Scorp has stayed away from the most important people in his life. At least Albus. I can imagine he wouldn't be happy with Rose ending up with Matt, but Albus ...

At least we know now that Selena's still alive, but she's got to be rescued soon before her screaming makes her captors kill her.

Oh, I'm so glad you said you're updating regularly. I check this now every day! :-)

Author's Response: This is the rock bottom of Rose's initial reaction. Overwhelmed by Scorpius' return, terrified by what it means if it's real or even if it's NOT real, her instinctive response is to run to Matt. Here she does it in absolute full force - and yes, this makes Matt, already doubting, see the real damage under the surface now it's so extreme and shy away.

I think the best summary of this situation is that Rose has used Matt, and Matt has let himself be used.

Scorpius is, and will always be, very good at getting under people's skin. Yes, he gets very effectively under Matt's skin with the crack about his return being what Matt's REALLY afraid of, but I wouldn't quite sell Matt so short. Matt's anger legitimately stems from seeing how hurt Rose is and imagining how bad that would be if this was a manipulation - if this were a trick, it would DESTROY her. That's what makes him lash out. Without that suspicion/worry of Scorpius, he wouldn't at all turn violent. But he's afraid. Of course he is. Even if it's not a fear to act on, even if Scorpius being back is better than him being dead, everything he's come to rely on, everything he values, is now at risk.

He wouldn't attack a real Scorpius for that, but it adds a bit of spice once he's already set off.

Rehabilitation and forgiveness are sticky wickets, for Eva and Thane and anyone. If it's even possible for people who've done what they've done, the number one requirement is regret. Sincere understanding of your misdeeds, and regret for them.

There is more to Scorpius' story than he's telling, but he's keeping his cards close to his chest for now.

Updates coming! Usually about 3 every fortnight, or so it works out; almost never less than 1 a week. Thanks for reviewing!

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