That again was beautiful. 10/10 : )Author's Response: Thanks for reviewing! Report Review
I love that lily has someone else too. 9/10 : )Author's Response: I'm glad she has someone too. It wouldn't feel right for Sirius to come swooping in to steal James to leave Lily alone for eternity. Thanks for reviewing! Report Review
Who knew the after life was so complicated. 9/10 : )Author's Response: It is certainly a mystery, isn't it? Thanks for reviewing. Report Review
This was a truly spectacular ending. It tied everything up nicely, and things seemed to fall into place.
I was never a big fan of Snape/Lily, but the way you told the story seems believable, so kudos. The bits with Peter and Remus were just right, too.
Just one thing I was wondering, though... How come they never heard about Dumbledore dying? Maybe they wouldn't have seen him, but at least James could've read about it in the paper or something...
I was a bit sad that the story had to come to an end, but I think the way you ended it was just right. Your stories are really good, and I hope my reviews did them justice! :D
~Khanh (Ravenclaw)Author's Response: I'm actually not a huge Lily/Snape fan either but it fit with this story and I plan on writing an outtake sometime soon. I struggled for a long time deciding if I was going to grant Peter happiness in the afterlife so I'm glad to have some validation that I was right in my choice to deny him that absolution.
To be honest, I didn't even think about Dumbledore and no one has ever mentioned that before, so it's interesting you brought it up. I think I was so focused on Sirius's death and then the major deaths involved with the second war that I didn't even remember that Dumbledore had died.
Thank you for taking the time to read and review my stories and give them some love. Reviewers like you make me want to continue writing. :) Report Review
This chapter was so interesting... I loved the little things Sirius continually learns about the afterlife, and the reunion with Regulus. (Especially the part about Snape...xD)
There was something I caught:
James looks up from the crossword he's doing, his fingers tapping out secret messages that Sirius wishes he could decode on his bent knee, and he says, "I don't think so."
Maybe you should put the "on his bent knee" part after "scret messages" to eliminate sentence confusion, and the "he" before "says" is a bit unneccesary.
I'm looking forward to seeing how everything will be resolved! ^^
~Khanh (Ravenclaw)Author's Response: Hey there,
I loved writing Sirius and Regulus's reunion so I'm glad you liked it. Thanks for pointing out that confusion, I'll fix it up soon.
Thanks for reviewing. Report Review
I think this was a really good sequel. I totally understand your afterlife concept, even though I've never really thought about that before.
I also like the characterization of James, Sirius, and Lily, they seemed just right.
Oh, and this is really minor, but if Remus and Sirius weren't Muggleborn, how would they know about Shakespeare and yeats enough for Remus to quote them and Sirius to recognize it? Just a minor technicality I though I'd point out. :)
~Khanh (Ravenclaw)Author's Response: Thanks for such a lovely review! I've always characterized my Remus as a reader with a fondness for Muggle poetry. Growing up with Remus has its perks for Sirius... :) Report Review
Hi. I know this story has been on here for a while but I just found it. It made me cry. I think you're an amazing writer and I can't wait to work my way through your other stories. Lily leaving just about killed me but it really was amazing. I hope you write more soon.Author's Response: Thanks for stopping by, Lisa! I'm glad you enjoyed it. It was very sad to have Lily leave but it was the right thing to do in this story. :) Thanks for reviewing! Report Review
So, your work is amazing, but this one and A Cold Heaven are now my honest-to-God favorites. You just amaze me! :) Also, oh my God, I'm so glad this didn't turn out to be your last fic. I might go into withdrawal if you didn't write anymore.
How did the idea for these two pieces come to you? Can you tell me a little about your "process" in writing them? It just seems like such a genius idea, and I haven't seen anything quite like it written before. I'd love to get the insider look.
The small section about the second war really hit me hard. It's strange and sensible all at once to think that Sirius would pray against his loved ones coming to join him in the afterlife. It also says a lot about the goodness of his character. Along the same lines, I love how James and Sirius are so ready to help Remus remove his massive burden of guilt. Someone has to, because that poor guy has been through too much. Also, I liked your inclusion of Peter. That provided an interesting moment of discussion amongst the four of them.
Loved the ending, although it made me cry buckets. I love the theme of catering to Lily the angel that reverberates throughout most of your work. I always loved her as this purely good character who deserved only good things. I'm happy that everything worked out, and though there are still hurts left to be healed, there is at least the glimmer of a happy future on the horizon. You just did such a wonderful job with the imagery, the characterization, the flow and sequence of events, all of it. I can find no flaws whatsoever.
I hope you enjoy all of my reviews :)
academica (Slytherin)Author's Response: Your honest-to-God favorites? That's pretty high standards for me to beat the next time I write something. I can't PROMISE I'll write more, but I sure will try. That's all I can guarantee.
This sounds like a total cop-out but I have no idea where these stories came from. I don't plan when I write at all, which is why I can never write novel-length stories. I think a lot of the time I go through old Yeats poems and I come up with story ideas based on lines from poems.
I think it's hard to remember how young they all are when they die so it would be very upsetting to find more people you know have died. I agree that Remus has been through a lot and he would feel so much guilt for everything. He's the last Marauder standing and I think that they are so close that James and Sirius know exactly what Remus needs in order to be absolved of his guilt.
I don't mean to make people cry but it seems to be a common occurrence with my fics. I love writing Lily and I really enjoyed her in this fic. I'm glad you're not upset with the fact that not everything ends tied up in a neat little bow. James has been denying his feelings for Sirius for so long that it doesn't make sense that he would be automatically in love with Sirius as soon as Lily's out of the picture. I think he's slowly starting to acknowledge it which is definitely a step in the right direction.
Thank you so much for all your reviews. They made me smile so much. I'm glad you loved it. :) Report Review
I love the dose of reality you've given to the afterlife in this piece. It probably would get really boring and unpleasant to do the same thing day in and day out, even if you're living in a supposed paradise. I feel so awful for Sirius because he thought he was coming home at last and now he's stuck in somewhat of a nightmare, at least temporarily.
The interaction between Sirius and Regulus was touching, and I'm glad you gave Sirius a bit of closure with his brother after their abrupt parting once Sirius found James and Lily. And I love you so much for including a bit of Lily/Snape! I thought about it in Part I a little bit, but I didn't dream it would actually be in here. This is officially the perfect story.
Moving on now to eat up Part III :)
academica (Slytherin)Author's Response: Mm, yeah. I donât know how happy Iâd be in this afterlife Iâve depicted. I feel like itâd be terrifying to live for an eternity. What do you talk about for that long?
I really wanted to write a companion piece to this about Regulus or do a Lily/Severus oneâ¦maybe I will one day. Iâm glad you were happy with the Lily/Snape. I thought it was fittingâ¦if I gave James to Sirius, Lily needs her someone to be happy with too.
Iâm glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for reviewing. Report Review
I loved the comparison between James's young body and Sirius's form, which has been aged by time and regret. I also love that you dealt appropriately with the thing I mentioned earlier about James cheating on Lily with Sirius. That bit about "you said 'till death do you part'" was brilliant. The Sirius/Lily moment was very tender and sweet, and it's sad to think that they won't be able to enjoy those moments forever.
I really love the drama in this piece. It almost seems like a stage play, where all of the action is very tangible for me. I feel like I'm just sitting back and watching it play out right in front of me, and I'm very isolated from it and yet entirely in tune with the emotions the characters are feeling. Anyway, that was a bit of a weird statement to make, but I felt like it needed to be made.
Very well done. Again with the lovely imagery and flow :)
academica (Slytherin)Author's Response: Hey :)
I know it seems sad that your body is frozen forever in the time that you die so I liked being able to tweak my afterlife and have Sirius's body, which as you said has been aged by time and regret, finally be young again.
I love writing stories where you feel everything...it makes me feel like I'm doing something right as a writer. I love that statement you made and it made perfect sense to me, so thanks.
I love your reviews!! Thank you so much. Report Review
This is such a great ending and I like the way it wasn't exactly Lily's choice to life- like there's still a higher power directing the afterlife. It was interesting, the comparison between the two loves of Lily and James: they loved each, they were in love with each other, but they loved others more fully, were loved by others fully.
As well, I found it interesting that the Marauders were, in the end, split up. They grew apart, had their own lives. Remus found Tonks and Peter left because of his own greed.
As for Peter, I didn't expect them to not forgive him. Well, I did (it's very confusing- I was of a mixed mind). But in the end I'm glad they didn't. There are some things too severe to forgive, and Peter's was too severe to forgive. I think it's fitting punishment that he will have to spend the rest of eternity wallowing in guilt, in the knowledge that he was a coward who betrayed his friends and an innocent baby for power.
All in all, I feel that this was a great conclusion to a unique and interesting and wonderful and well-written story. I'm glad I read it.Author's Response: Thank you! I'm glad you read it too. :) Report Review
Interesting twist with Lily and Snape- a good one. I like that they will get their happily-ever-after, especially Snape. He will finally have in death what he didn't have in life.
I'm also glad that you decided that in death you wouldn't have the burdens of guilt- that would have made a miserable eternity for many, especially since they probably couldn't absolve the problems -or think to- by just visiting the wronged. It would be interesting to have Sirius visit the rest of his family, to see what their interactions would be like.
Random thought: what would Voldemort's afterlife be like? Would he find his life put into a different perspective? How would he spend eternity?
Another thing: I cannot imagine spending eternity alone or even with just one other person. I cannot even begin to imagine eternity. I wonder how Sirius and James and the rest of the world handle it. What will/do they do? (Just wondering if you have any thoughts on that...)
James and Sirius' relationship feels as though it's progressing very naturally- not too quickly at all.
Another great chapter! You write very well and, I feel, give just the right amount of detail and feelings.Author's Response: I think spending an eternity is scary because how do you know what you will do/talk about for that long? Maybe it would've been easier to deal with if my afterlife was different, if there were billions of people wandering around that you can stop and chat with...
Thank you for reviewing. :) Report Review
Oh my gosh. You have such an interesting (not to mention realistic) vision of the afterlife. I think this is the best version I've ever come across, especially since the afterlife isn't overcrowded with the millions, no billions, that have died since the beginning of time. I especially love the idea that you only see the people you had a strong connection with in life.
As for the bond between the three of them, I really like what you did. I'm glad that Lily isn't mad at Sirius (she seems so understanding and honestly nice) and that they have a nice relationship. It was sad that Lily noted that she would eventually fade from their lives, as if she realized that James would eventually figure himself out and choose Sirius.
As for James, well, he can be so frustrating. I understand that he's going through a very frustrating period but honestly- he's had years and years to contemplate his feelings for Sirius and to then just through them back in Sirius' face- saying that he was doing it for Sirius- well! But it's human. He's human. Hopefully he corrects his thoughts soon... instead of toying with Sirius' feelings.
One last thing: I know this is necessary and realistic, but I dislike that you stay the same age as when you die. I can't stop imagining those who die at a very old age and having to continue living with the aches and pains they lived with. It's so sad. I prefer it when it is dipicted that you can choose your age after you die. Afterall, that's how you're going to be spending eternity.
But after all these comments, the basic comment is that I really enjoy this story. Fantastically written!Author's Response: Thank you! Report Review
I realize you are done with writing, and thus may never see this, but I will write it for you who deserve it and because you have made me feel it. This is simply the best story I've ever been beholden to here or anywhere. An eternity in which to repair what life has undone. I would die happy knowing I was going there. Perhaps because I am young, and inevitably uncertain, I can't help but ask you the author (though who is to say that you have an answer?) what happens if you die without knowing who you love, belong with, or need? If you feel you've never wronged anyone, though they feel you are guilty? These are questions that I ask myself often concerning this life, (and now the afterlife included) and may never find an answer to. However, it gives me hope to believe that somewhere, souls have the power to last, and that forgiveness has the power to damn, or even more frighteningly to accept, and that people have the power to decide, finally, after many bleak, grey moonscapes, that they are free. If you happen upon this, know that somewhere, I am listening to the rain, contemplations seldom, my questions and urgencies paling like lights, one by one. Thank you.
-Dani Report Review
Words can't express how gorgeous this is. I'm afraid I'll have to drop my long reviews rule and just go with a short and honest 'I loved it'. Because I really did. Everything you portrayed felt painfully real. The words you used were magically enticing. And all the themes and meanings beautifully conveyed.
So much happened in this chapter and I wish I could go by, section after section, commenting each one. But trust me that i really do love every single one of them. Peter's arrival and consequent departure was bitter and so hard for me to swallow, though written perfectly. I'm glad they didn't forgive. He didn't deserve it.
Remus's arrival broke my heart, their gathering so bittersweet I was actually nearing tears. But it was nothing compared with Lily's leaving. I couldn't help all the feelings clutching at my heart when i read how she was flickering and how James didn't want to let her go. Your version of afterlife feels incredibly sad, because it shows just how the people can't stay altogether, but move on without the others they love.
I'm at a true loss of words after reading this. It's amazing, a bloody masterpiece. You're incredibly talented and even though you're leaving the fanfic writing, I hope you continue writing and never stop, because you're brilliant. Report Review
This story is the ultimate.This is truely the best fan fic I have ever read. It has all the attributes of a works worth studying. There is a real lesson intertwined in a memorable story.
Although, I have never imagined James or Sirius as gay, its good to think that all love transcends to the afterlife.
The only thing I think the story was missing is the part where Severus is blamed for his wrong doings. Remember, the hunting or James and Lily started with him. It would have been interesting to see if Lily would forgive him so easily once she found this out. I couldn't see her forgiving him when she didn't forgive Peter. Then where would she be.
To create this many questions is an indication of how much I liked your story. You have done a great job!Author's Response: Thank you so very much! I was going to do a separate one-shot that revolved around Severus, but I don't think I'll continue writing so I suppose that will never happen. Report Review
This is a good chapter.
I liked the darkness is a metaphor for the loss and loneliness one often experiences at night when all is quiet but your own mind.
I really did like this chapter. It's like Sirius is more in tune with Lily than James is; how come James can't tell she is coming to an end being there.Author's Response: Thank you so very much for reviewing. :) Report Review
This is a really moving story; it gives a whole new perspective on what the afterlife could mean.
The description of Lily was very accurate and I like her. I wonder what her secrets are and if she's just waiting for someone else to die to move away from James.Author's Response: Thank you! Report Review
This is so creative and lovely. I really enjoyed this chapter. The way you describe the afterlife is amazing, because not only does it have the slightly ethereal feeling to it, it's also so...REAL! Strange things happen in this world, it's also pretty lonely and difficult, but the characters are as vivid as ever. You explain their emotions so simply and it's suddenly very easy for me to understand.
I adore the role Lily has in this story, especially in regards of her relaitonship with Sirius. I adore their friendship, honesty and the ease with which they exist together. I still can't get over the line in the previous chapter saying had it not been for James, Sirius would spend his eternity with Lily.
Adding Regulus was so wonderful. I love reading about Sirius-Regulus encounters. They are brothers, therefore the bond between them is fascinating, just as all the ache there is in the relationship due to their different paths as such. You wonderfully captured that. And now, I'm not a Snape/Lily fan at all, but when this was revealed toward the end of the chapter, I did feel this excitement. It was a nice twist.
Your descriptions are astounding. You paint the picture just enough. I loved the darkness causing the memory loss. It genuinelly scared me. I'm finding this fic to be very believable in many aspects (Sirius/Lily relationship, Regulus-Sirius talk, the afterlife and all its truths), I'll just wait for reading more about James/Sirius since they didn't exactly get to me yet. Their interaction was strained in this chapter, though, as there were other things to be dealt with. So I'm sure the next one will explain it all. I can't wait. I'm very gladd I'm reading this story. :)
~LizAuthor's Response: I'm very glad you reviewed! Thank you so much, this is a fantastic review. :) Report Review
This is hearbreaking, Missy. It's definitely your best, the deepest, most moving thing you've ever written, which is amazing to fathom, since so many of your other stories made me cry, too. But this one, wow. You captured death in a way that felt so incredibly real. How can one talk about realism when the story is about the afterlife, I don't know, but the characters and their interactions are extraordinarily realistic.
That you're ending your writings here with this story seems perfect. It's a beautiful piece, even more than beautiful. Thank you for writing it. ^_^Author's Response: I already told you how appreciative I am of your reviews. Thank you so much, Susan. I'm very glad you enjoyed this. Report Review
Your beast is a very pretty one, Missy. :P It's been so long since I've read something by you (my bad) and reading this was like reading liquid words - everything flowed together and moved along so beautifully. Everything here is in the afterlife, but it's still so real, the emotions so powerful. The setting adds an interesting degree of mystery, making one ask what sort of place it really is and how it works. I love the addition of the memory-consuming darkness - it adds an aspect of horror to this story of redemption and reunions (which would, by itself, probably be too fluffy :P).
It's funny because some of this story can be read as an implicit Sirius/Lily. *evil grin* Or maybe it's just my corrupted brain reading it that way. The friendship between them - or is it more of a comradeship? - seems so deep here, and they're so comfortable with each other. The passion that Sirius experiences with James isn't the same sort of relationship (which could be, at the moment, due to James's stubbornness). Whatever is going on with the pairings, this is a gorgeous piece of writing. You have a mastery of language that few others can claim to possess. ^_^Author's Response: Haha, thank you, Susan. :) Report Review
This was an outstanding completion of a wonderful story.
I think if I had the time I could write an essay on the theme of forgiveness and its overarching importance to this story. I loved the way your brought this theme back again and again -- at the end, with Remus, with Peter (the portrait of damnation). And, interestingly, in this afterlife, it is not God but other people who do the forgiving. Calls to mind the Sartre line about Hell being other people -- only here, it seems that the nature of one's eternity, be it heaven or hell, is in the hands (or largely in the hands) of other people.
And with Peter, I wondered whether there is eventually a cost for refusing to forgive him? After a thousand years, will James and Sirius and Lily (and presumably Snape) get tired of seeing him at their respective doors, begging forgiveness, and acknowledge that he's paid his debt?
You've set up such an interesting Afterlife that I continue to wonder about it.
The Peter sequence, the Remus part -- both beautifully written.
And it is heartening to think off all these people spending eternity with the ones they love the most.
This is beautifully written, original, with wonderful dialogue that conforms to character (notwithstanding the peculiar situation in which the characters find themselves), great descriptions, finely articulated and deeply felt emotions, and a lot of thought.
Oh. And for a reader who is fond of Snape as a character, I liked that the ending gave him the girl. Even if he was dead and it happened offstage. 10/10Author's Response: I love this review so very much and I hated to respond because I wanted to keep it in my unanswered reviews. But I just wanted to thank you for reviewing. This was splendid. :) Report Review
This is a Review Fest review; and, I fear, somewhat shorter than I would like. I am grateful to the RF to introducing me to stories I might otherwise never have seen. Like this one.
I continue to be amazed by the quirky, vivid, almost morally-driven nature of this afterlife. (Not quite enchanted by it; it is a daunting place. That episode on the bench outside the antique shop was rather horrifying, as though he had walked a few feet outside his home and vanished into a fog. James fear of the dark -- I wondered what underlay that)
The need for forgiveness, to survive within this eternity, gives it an almost Christian character. As though the quality of forgiveness is determinative of whether a being experiences the after life as heaven or as hell.
I thought the scene with Regulus was wonderful.
This is fine writing, and this was a fine chapter.Author's Response: Thank you so very much. Report Review
Uh woman, how come you never told me that you updated "the beast"? Just kidding, you must have put so much time and frustration into this one because it really is so amazing.
This chapter simply took my breath away. I felt a little intimidated at first since it was so long in length, but everything was pieced together very well. I honestly have no words to describe how well written this short story ended up being. I do agree in thinking that this was probably your best HPFF ever. I'm going to try to bring up some of my favorite moments in this chapter, but I'll probably just be gushing the entire time.
I enjoyed the small quote from Yeats that you put in seeing as most of your latest fics were based on lines from Yeats' poems. On top of that, I thought it was so great how you expanded on your idea of absolution that was first introduced in chapter two. The afterlife you created is such a unique and mysterious place that it fascinates me to know end. Who knew that three simple words of "I forgive you" could simply free a person of guilt allowing them to live a happy life? I really enjoyed Sirius' reaction to seeing Remus and Tonks together. It added a comical effect to this chapter. There really were quite a few funny lines that you wrote; I just have trouble spotting it now. But then Lily starts to fade away because she's destined to be with Snape and not James. I don't know who I felt sorrier for; James because Lily was leaving him or Lily because James took the news so terribly. Either way, I'm glad that all three of them got their happy ending. If you do stop writing, I'm glad that you ended with Lights Were Paling because this truly is your best work ever.Author's Response: I thought that I told you it was finished? Haha. Thanks for reviewing, Liserface. Report Review
First off, I'm so sorry that nearly all of the reviews for this story were lost due to the site crash. I know how hard you worked on "the beast" and maybe leaving these two reviews will make your day.
I remember why I loved this chapter so much. It's the creativity that you put into your writing that always amazes me. It's so creepy how the nighttime sort of sucks all the feeling out of Sirius and it makes me wonder what else could occur in this afterlife that they live in. Then you continue to amaze me with another one of my favorite parts of this chapter. I admire the detail you put and all the time you must have spent coming up with the process in which Sirius goes to visit Regulus. I really did enjoy reading that portion so much because the encounter between these two brothers felt so pure, but also full of tension. The way you characterized Regulus is amazing, because this is actually the first fic that I read with him in it. So I'm glad that I got to read about him in that way.
You know how difficult it is for me to review, so I hope that this one short one makes up for you losing all of your reviews for this chapter. It's nothing in comparison to the original one that I left you, so I hope you're not too disappointed.Author's Response: This was a lovely review and I'm not disappointed. Thank you for taking the time to review. :) Report Review
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