Reading Reviews for invictus.
  
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Review #1, by GubraithianFire friday: part two

10th February 2013:
Somehow I didn't notice that there was an update and I feel really bad about it buuut whatever, here I am~

It's so hard to review this story (I would posit that's why you don't have as many as you deserve, but what do I know about reviewing trends? Next to nothing). Mostly it's because I'm never 100% sure of what I'm seeing, and also because I have a terrible memory and remember broad strokes instead of specifics, but I don't really see how this chapter might be construed as a betrayal, as you say. It just felt more real, and that is kind of a weird point to make because I've said before and I'll say countless times again that this story is uniquely universal even as specific and insular (IN A GOOD WAY!) it can be. But it felt more tethered to reality, and I think it's the dialogue, the removal of Rose from interaction with others. And yeah, usually Rose is mentally removed from others, but the physical removal, the eavesdropping, her silence (she has barely any dialogue in this chapter, right?), even the profanity from Albus... it felt more real. It was something new. Maybe that's the possible betrayal you're seeing? That everything is falling apart (again, Rose notes, and ugh how terrible and heartbreaking)?

I'd rather things fall apart. Stasis is antithetical to plot! Or okay antithetical is a strong word. But stasis of the sort Rose might crave is bad and she is definitely in need of an intervention, as much as I love her interior life (and that's a realism of a different sort than the type that this chapter represents). But no one is really ready to do it. Maybe Scorpius is, and I guess he thinks/hopes he is, but I don't think he's prepared either. To face truly what Rose is and/or has become. I don't know that his love, if it is love, would fix her, even if he hopes and Rose thinks it would. What Albus is advocating, if he is advocating anything specifically, wouldn't help either, but of course, he's not wrong. It hurts for Rose and the reader to hear, because we're so deeply, unprecedentedly involved with her that there are times where it's hard to tell where she ends and the reader is meant to begin (does that make sense? I think it doesn't. Just, the empathy/sympathy levels in this story are incredible even though we know Rose is a really distinct screwed-up person). And Molly. Oh, poor Molly... again, my terrible fic memory means that I don't remember exactly what Rose and Percy are up to, but her pain is palpable. And Rose, naive narcisstic Rose, thinks that it's impossible for Molly to know about it. She's both frightened by and intoxicated by the idea of her own agency; no wonder she can't account for others', especially her family members'.

(I feel like one of those self-righteous morons in discussions who are just sprouting intellectual-sounding things without knowing what any of it means rn so please forgive me if I'm coming off that way; it's so hard for me to be coherent about what you write that I end up writing myself into a box where I can only respond by going to the opposite end of the coherence spectrum. I'd like to settle for 'UGH Y U SO PERF' but this is a ~public space so instead I wrote... everything I've written here so far. ACK SRY BB I'M NOT WORTHY).

Seriously, though, I'm not worthy. I am so honored to be counted as someone important to you and to the story, but I'm not worthy. This is on a totally different level. I skimmed last chapter to catch up and there was a line from Rose wondering if humans can see the divine or the fantastical or fairies or something like that -- I think this story is proof that we can. We may not always understand what it means, but it speaks to us in different ways, chilling and striking ways, and just being exposed to it is a wonder in and of itself.

/awe couched in pretension

Author's Response: OH MY LAWD GUBBY YOU DID THIS SO I WOULDN'T TAKE THE STORY DOWN

DIDN'T YOU

sobs cry gasp

Your input has been so so so so SO extremely helpful. I don't even know where to start, truly. I guess I will start where you do...

I think you're right, it's that it was such a departure from Rose's little world and all of a sudden people were actually saying things, and they were intense!!! things. So I'm glad that for you it wasn't a what is this story even doing moment in a bad way. Rose doesn't have much dialogue which isnt' a far cry from other chapters in a literal sense, but she also has a lot less mediation here. She's listening for maybe the first time though I don't think anyone's said anything this important in maybe the whole story.

awyertyateruterueywrtuweyrtuayer I can't even respond help i'm a lump help a lump of FEELINGS

I don't know if Rose actually needs "fixing," so I'm really glad you brought it up--I think Rose needs to, um, sort out her priorities and suck it up and be a good person and to do that she's going to have to escape her own little world, as I have taken to calling it. But you're so right. I don't know if what Scorpius wants to do for Rose is going to help her; I don't know if he knows what she needs. I don't know if I know what she needs, but I'm going to offer her something and see how it works out.

It's my fault for not touching back on things more, because the political plot was originally going to be very important to how things unfolded here, then Rose went completely bonkers and took me with her deeper than I expected. Or I took her deeper than I expected to. I think in a way that we feel for people all the time, every day, knowing that they're really horribly messed up, and there's a certain glamor and simple pleasure in that, the human ability to love, to really, deeply, care. Part of the magic of empathy is something I could have only hoped to invoke in this story and I'm always in awe that it's produced such palpable and intense reactions. But very very pleased.

There's not really a better way to describe it than that Rose is both frightened and intoxicated; that's perfect. I won't add anything. ILY

No; I know you enough to know that none of this is to appear as something. You're not like Rose (or me heurheuhrue) in that, and I can really tell that the beauty of what you've written here is genuine. I think beauty is always genuine, actually. I think that's just how it works. I'm a bit fed up (not with you ofc ♥) with the obsession in the literary world with whether or not something's pretentious. All of writing is pretentious, so we have to sort of leave that concern behind when we enter into writing. Writing is performance. That's what it is. It's acting upon people, it asks things of people's emotions and minds. It means to appear a certain way.

I can't believe YOU ARE SAYING THIS ABOUT MY STORY. I ACTUALLY AM IN TEARS BECAUSE YOU CAN SAY THE PERFECT THINGS AND I KNOW YOU MEAN THEM AND THAT MEANS SO MUCH TO ME I DON'T EVEN KNOW HOW TO ARTICULATE MY FEELS SO HAVE SOME HEARTS ♥ ♥ ♥


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Review #2, by peppersweet friday: part two

9th February 2013:
wail. WAIL.

this story is giving me overpowering feels but I have not winced nor cried aloud

(I might have done an anguished sigh or two)

Scorpius can play and talk. Albus cannot listen and play. - i think this is some cool character development you know but, well, I think you know from logs that my mind is not in an analytical place tonight. but I have braced myself for this chapter and i am DYING to read it because you write like a flawless queen, turtle princess

you are aUTHOR PRINCESS

who is pacing behind rose? oh mystery

I think when molly observes that rose is stressed about the prank - that's a kind of hit-the-nail-on-the-head line, i guess? because, before, you've used the juxtaposition of rose's mental torment/absurdity & mundanity to key us in to her actual mental state, and here it's like...shown into sharp relief. Rose is a big lumpy (space princess) glob of emotions and grief, and - molly is just like 'stressed about the prank?'. like, the word 'prank' sounds so out of place.

and...yeah, no, I'm not very good at being analytical tonight.

but I feel like with rose...she'll turn the most basic/random of things into poetry. like, her internal narration is so sturm and drang and stuff, and it's really discordant with what the other characters say and do - in a good way - like Rose mentally soliloquising as albus just pops up like 'hey you two need chow'

you are a goddess

Peeves has tooted out a small tune to me, and I retaliate with a wordless screech, pulling on my hair. - LIKE OMG THIS IS A PERFECT EXAMPLE

oh ho HO

things are going down!

I like that someone's vocalising these thoughts about rose. I've been getting very caught up in her narration of late and it's even making me mistrust albus and molly a bit, even though I plainly shouldn't

thatís why writing is such a dangerous hobby. Itís a one-way conversation - I FEEL LIKE THIS IS A METAPHOR FOR ROSE OR SOMETHING

squee at the author's note :3

UPDATE SOON PLZ

Author's Response: JULES ♥ I'm going to try to answer this as well as I can hahierhuer. I already let you know about my difficulties interpreting but there are apparently two sides of angst and they're more different than I'd anticipated.

aUTHOR PRINCESS is the best compliment.

I like that you always pick up on small details that I sometimes write without understanding fully myself; the spectre pacing. I interpret it, after I've written it (sobs), as her conscience. Does that work with how you read it? hOPE SO

Yes, Rose is a glob and Molly's like, urh, what's a glob? And so she tries to deal with it the way that she can though she already knows at this point that Rose and Percy are in on something so in a way she's trying to make it smaller so /she/ has less to worry about, too. But yeah, I'd never said straight-out that it was a "prank" before but I felt like, ho ho, here's a moment of absurdity that I'm going to play up.

I love your analysis, raggedy doll princess :3

Rose is so so absorbed into her own world and it's the be-all-end-all for her so she sees strange beauty in things and makes things about it beautiful, but she also can contort to other peoples' realities when she wants to, which is part of what makes her so frustrating, because when you see it you KNOW that she could clean herself up and get help if she wanted to, but she just doesn't want to, and that's her biggest, perhaps, problem.

I love the idea of someone dishing it back to Peeves. Rose's insanity allows me to do this without it being like what?? I mean, it's a bit of that, but not...I'm gonna stop now.

Part of my main goal with this fic was to have it give a reader an emotional response. I wanted to make someone as a character who makes you sympathetic with her own brand of charm but who is realistically messed up, too, because I think that Rose's an exploded version of all of us in those ways.

I realize now that I haven't made writing that prevalent in the last couple chapters because the letters stopped being that important. I'd tried to jam them in here but NOPE the story didn't allow it. i'm going to have a cheater chapter later--you'll see. And when I edit I want to make some more things consistent. A lot of emotional impact of a certain scene earlier in the story depends on you understanding that Rose's writing is super important to her, but right now, it's taking a back seat.

THANKS FOR YOUR REVIEWS UR DA BEAST

YES I MEANT IT THAT WAY ♥


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Review #3, by peppersweet friday: part one

3rd February 2013:
WAIL BECAUSE INVICTUS AND WAIL BECAUSE ANGST.

we have shared so much angst in the past week or so that it seems very fitting I should be reading this. thank you for updating, oh mighty lilyeth~

okay, okay, despite saying okay twice (and now thrice) this line is NOT OKAY:
"Poppy," you said, because we were on first-name terms, "Poppy, please, give her something, put her to sleep, give her a dreamless. What do I do? Put her to sleep, put me to sleep."
do you WANT me to feel things like I felt just then? seriously. that line's a punch in the gut.

I feel like there's a marked difference in Rose from chapter to chapter. when I say marked, I make it sound like it's obvious...it's actually very subtle, but I can sense it, and she feels a bit more unravelled in this chapter than she's done before.

so Scorpius was at the funeral? I'm aching to figure out exactly what's gone on here - how and why Rose witnessed Hermione and Hugo's death, why Scorpius can see (or part-see?) thestrals, etc, etc.

and Scorpius. mowh. I want to gather him up in my arms and hug him.

I like what you said about the applause at the funeral being partly selfish on everyone's part - I think? how they applaud for themselves, and how they possibly feel grief in more of a selfish way because of Hermione's fame, etc. I'm not clever enough to do some anaylsis wizardry here but that line really resonated with me for some reason.

'Dom catches my eye past your shoulder. I do not see her; just the aura of your heat, and what it does to me.' we share in angst and I understand this so well and...FEELS.

also, when Rose says the last time she cried herself to sleep - before everything fell apart. before, not after. I am making a note of this because I feel like it's important (and I bet I'm way off the mark).

and I love her description of Scorpius being asleep. she finds pretty things in the gormless mouth and the squished cheek and the half-moustache.

(momentary snort: Rose's eyebrows were the topic of one of her first conversations with Scorpius.)

I think I partly love this story because it works with my headcanon so well. you've subverted so many things in a very beautiful and natural way - Rose and Scorpius, for instance. here she's a little unhinged with a lot of secrets and an allegience to Percy; he's the sweet and shiny one. it fits how I imagine them, but in a fresh way, and they feel like totally new, totally revolutionary characters. I just love this fic in so many ways I cannot express~

I feel like Rose might underestimate Scorpius too much and this may come back to bite her in the backside (so to speak) soon. the bit where she says he won't have charmed his stuff and it'll be easy to summon things - that especially. I may just be reading into things again but OH WELL.

(that ahem was totally umbridge back for vengeance o k)

thestrals!!! I feel a bit tense now. I've even stopped eating this satsuma so I can concentrate on reading.

('and Professor Professor has entered the classroom' - is this a typo or...? because it reminds me of community when jeff makes up a conspiracy theories class taught by professor professerson and yeah.)

'Once, before we knew each other well, I used to will myself to feel for you. I considered your profile one day realising your presence procured no reaction in me, and wished fervently for the strange visceral twisting I knew to accompany obsession, and wished for them at every thought of you. - guhhh so beautiful.

I have to say I was a wee bit confused by the introduction of James and 'work' at the end - I think it was a flashback, right? aarrgh. I think I'm too wound up in angst to concentrate!

this was another perfect chapter, lovely! I adore you and stuff ♥

Author's Response: JULIA ♥

Rose's outer world is closer to getting to where she's been planning it to go for the whole story--she's really close to the break in and retrieving the letters and even in getting Scorpius to talk to her again (she already got a snog, to be fair), so of course, I have to balance this out by making her a little more cray inside, don't I? That's just what this fic promises.

Scorp. was at the funeral, indeed. I can make that clearer when I go back to edit. It's hard for me to tell what's just in my head and what I've actually put on the page.

And yes, you're reading applause just how I meant it. I meant there to be some irony there, too, because Rose is totally self-absorbed and she's projecting it onto other people, whether or not it's actually true for them.

I think you might be onto something in that she last cried to sleep /before/ stuff got horrible with her and Scorpius; but I don't know if I was ever planning to explain it properly so I'm glad you brought it up haha. I wrote it because after stuff went wrong between them Rose was just on a mission to get it right again for her own good and was writing to Scorpius like a madwoman (more letters to come in the next chapter) and also had Percy at her ear telling her to get her stuff together, so she's never gotten to the point of processing her grief. She hasn't even acknowledged it. I think her first reaction to the news was to feel guilty for distracting Mum and Hugo right before they got, well, killed, and she thinks it's her fault, so she gets jumpy every time someone mentions them, more than the average person does when something just hurts. So she's still in this phase of protecting herself. She didn't get the "poison" out and it's ruining her life. Also Scorpius's probably bc he still loves her, in a way.

Scorpius is definitely going to be a physical presence in the next chapter. I'd pre-written one of the scenes half a year ago and I've done a bit of hemming and hawing on it to try to fit it to the plot I actually wrote (which has deviated wildly from the plot I planned). Someone who you aren't expecting is going to get hurt. You are a perceptive reader is all I'm going to say... :3

I feel--this may be tmi but deal with it, you've heard worse from me--like this fic stems vividly from personal feelings, so, I always feel like the person I'm enamored with is better and a good person and I'm this little leetch on society who has no right to consider a togetherness; so this fic stems both from my hopes and from me facing up to facts about myself. I don't know, I may be looking for answers. Maybe a conclusion to this story can be two birds with one stone.

Thestrals are my way of rooting the story in people's hidden feelings. Addae has been somewhat obviously on a mission but this is the one real curiosity he has about Rose, something he organically just wants to know, and so he acts like a decent human when he realizes he's overstepped his boundaries and leaves Rose alone. Scorpius saw Rose at the verge of jumping off the astronomy tower and he's seen how she's "dead" since, so, whenever he encounters the Thestrals he imagines that he's going to see him. He feels like he's witnessed enough to garner at least a glimpse. I think I'm going to have Rose explain in real words how she saw her fam die bc it is not clear at this point and I don't think it needs to stay a mystery...

Professor Professor was originally a typo but Rachel told me to keep it. And I did.

Yes, it was a flashback! I tried with questionable success to root the scene in time with "after I'd convinced myself it was good to love you" or whatever I wrote. I'll do it more concretely. I'm realizing there are things that are questions that DON'T NEED TO BE QUESTIONS and it's my fault for not writing it better, but this story is such a boiling cauldron inside of me that I forget what ingredients I've already added, if you will.

♥ I ADORE /YOU/


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Review #4, by peppersweet thursday

20th October 2012:
i am trying to read this and paint my nails black at the same time, the colour seems fitting but the act of nail-painting does not. so sorry if this review is a bit incoherent, the pads of my fingertips are skiting all over the keys as i try not to get nail polish on my laptop.

ooft - that first paragraph - OOFT.

great line: 'The world, Mum told me once, with the ironic smile so common to our family, does not sleep when we sleep, does not stop when we stop.

ooh. suspicious things happening. suspicion. I am bad at painting nails and also bad at finding the deeper meaning in fic, but I thoroughly enjoy reading this.

I love the occasional, jarring dips into humour, like - As I take a moment to add "Dumbelina" to my mental cache of nicknames for Albus - it really emphasises Rose's mental state. not the most eloquent way of putting it, there, but. it seems really odd whenever you bring humour in - not odd as in it detracts from the flow and does something bad for the story, no. odd because it does detract from the flow and for good reason. it feels like pauses, moments where we can step back and think about Rose and what she wants. idk - just my take on it :L

even though I think I knew before that Hermione and Hugo were dead, I think this line was the 'stomach-punch' line: 'The newspaper articles all reading: investigation ongoing, and how these have not changed, not once, in a year.' - I don't know why it's that one particularly.

so I'm really interested to find out what went on there - and what exactly has been written about Rose in the tabloids, hmm.

wait wait wait

Rose witnessed Hermione and Hugo's death. okay. okay. this is totally NOT making me feel tense and edgy.

and scorpius can sort of see thestrals too, right?

like the juxtaposition of angst and humour, I love the contrast of powerful, eloquent prose and the totally mundane in Rose's narration, like how here letter (or is it just a thought?) to scorpius ends thus: 'Iíd just like to sit with you again. Iím sorry for what you saw and what it meant. Iíd just like to watch you laugh.'

aah. this fic is so good. sjaskjshkajshdbvfdj.

scorpius seems kind of...adorably unknowing and sweet, and it's kind of sad to know that their relationship was a political one. I'd kind of like to know a lot more about him, but it actually makes the story a lot more tense that I really don't know about him so yeah. but you know how I feel about scorpii.

it also broke my heart a little when scorpius said 'at least your parents did good things in the war' - that line really got to me! he seems like a good kid, having to live a life other people have set out for him and caught up in all of this drama and things - I don't know enough about him to judge whether he is 'good' or 'bad' but right now he just seems so sweet and I feel so sorry for him (more than I do for Rose, you know)

wailing because WEE SCORPIUS 'that you tried to live outside of your father's footsteps so vehemently that you'd begged the Sorting Hat to keep you out of Slytherin or youíd die of shame'. omg. omggg.

i know you're using concealment of information and holding things back as a brilliant technique to create tension and such but DEAR GOD I JUST WANT TO KNOW

oh oh oh IT'S SOMETHING TO DO WITH THE MEMORIAL RIGHT

ermahgerd this is so tense UPDATE SOON PLEASE

in other news...there is black nail varnish everywhere.



Author's Response: In light of your critical analysis of my presentation of the grotesquely comic in an earlier review, I think painting your nails is perfectly suitable to the tone and content of this chapter, too. The colour is obviously also in line with all the darkness is Rose's soul.

The thing about this fic is that I've been really hypercritical of the individual lines but now, reading it over again because I've forgotten what information I've already divulged and what things are still mysteries, none of them really say much that works towards a functioning whole. This is a huge problem in my writing and this fic sort of eggs it on and I'm not even that mad. I AIN'T EVEN MAD, U HEAR ME WORLD. So I'm really glad--all this to say, I mean--that you can pick out lines that work on their own. Sometimes I wonder if that isn't the only thing working here, individual lines, which is a bit frustrating because i do have a plan and a plot that I'm trying to unravel. I guess it's my first time doing this sort of thing so I'm clumsy at it, still.

Rose's humour as odd sort of fits with her and my understanding of her. I was thinking about this today, watching the X Files--why does fiction necessarily have to make more sense than real life? Why does everything have to tie together so neatly and why is it that when it doesn't we aren't satisfied with a story, no matter how much it touched us in smaller moments? And I wonder if my subconscious didn't get to this frame of mind ages ago and that's what I've been working towards this whole time. I think Rose's humor sort of surfacing out of nowhere might be my stabs at this idea. Whether that's acceptable or not, I leave up to you, royal readers...

I mean for Scorpius to be pretty dumb; not because I want to emphasize his lack of smarts but mostly because it's an easy way to explain Rose's attraction to him. In a way, while there is decent sexual tension between them, I've often felt that Rose feels some sort of nurturing spiritual connection with relation to Scorpius and that's part of why she can't let him go; nothing else about her is particularly kind or good, but she feels in this one area that she was somehow making up for other faults. If ya hear me.

UM THE MEMORIAL IS JUST A MEMORIAL JULIA.

Sorry I failed at updating.I hope your heart still applies ♥


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Review #5, by WeasleyTwins monday

28th September 2012:
Hello, here to review for the review swap! :)

You know, I read this and left it for a few days because I wasn't sure how I wanted to respond. It's very postmodern, perhaps post-postmodern and maybe a bit Woolf - you say the plot will come eventually, but I don't care about the plot. I really don't - if you're trying to discuss the idea of inhabiting the body and being at odds with the skin, then the plot doesn't amount to a hill of beans. It's about the expression - that's what you're going for and I think you've accomplished it.

"He makes her recite all the things she wishes she was eating while serving her only greens. It is a strange sort of power play." - If I may be completely honest, there are times such as these in the story that are almost /too/ literary. It felt unnatural - forced - like you are trying to bring across this very artsy sort of expression through your descriptions and characterizations. It seems that way because you're giving too much. Let the readers figure that out - let us come to our own conclusions about these types of things. I'm an English major (surprise, surprise) and one of the smartest women I've ever known (she's a downright genius) - well, she told me that often times, we give our readers too much, we baby them. You've got to give your readers credit - they're smart. I only say this because I was impressed with the story and it saddened me when I got to this point - I like to figure things out on my own, I suppose.

Your characterizations are interesting - they're definitely not like anything I've read in fanfiction - they're strange. I like the artsy nature. It's different, that's for sure. You know, I should know what to say, but I really don't. It's just so...individualized - I enjoyed the fragmentation of the sections in the chapter. It was all just very unique.

Shelby

Author's Response: Hm, I'm responding to this first of my other unanswered because it's one of the most interesting ones on the lineup. Firstly, thanks for the review! :)

And second--overly flattered/etc to be compared at all to Woolf as I worship her...and I'm glad you appreciate (at least intellectually, I gather) what I'm ~trying~ to do with mode of expression--but I'd argue that for this particular story, plot actually sort of does matter to what happens and why people are the way they are. I know what you mean, of course, that it's secondary to other things, but I wouldn't could it out entirely. So I'm "going for" a story that has a plot that plays a role but also one that's interesting and honest in expression...

I'm guessing for this quote you mean that because I say "It is a strange sort of power play" I've told people too much and made you sad? Or is this the part where I became too literary? My actual motivations for writing this story were to write a character as honestly as I can. That means writing what comes to mind as something this girl would say, because of who she is, and doing it in a way that I think is beautiful or effective. I--don't know if I've mentioned this, but I'm also an English/creative writing major???--so I feel that my opinion is also valid if for no other reason than I do think about what I do, and I'm not word-vomiting over the page. For this piece I feel particularly like I'm just inside a character's head, occasionally inhabiting her bones. There's a lot of me in this character, too. So if I'm telling you too much, I'm not too sorry, because that's just the way this particular story works. I do believe that your point is valid--readers are intelligent and don't need anyone to tell them what a story is about, I agree. But, perhaps a bit selfishly, I'm going to do what my story wants me to do as a writer. If at times others don't enjoy it or think it comes off as being too pretentious, I'm okay with that! Because I believe in the story for what it's trying to say. Perhaps I haven't done it in the most brilliant way, but I haven't done it for show, as much as it may seem like it to you. I don't go into things thinking about...making it art. I think about being honest to a story. If that isn't clear here, I'm a bit disappointed, but I think each story has a couple of faults in the eyes of each reader. There are also several typos in here and stuff, which bothers other people ;)

I still don't understand /quite/ what you think I'm spoon-feeding. But, alas, I will have to politely disagree with you that I'm babying readers. In my opinion this is one of the toughest stories to work out that I've written and not because I did it that way on purpose. Just because as this sort of "halo" of consciousness writing works out, it's not possible to entirely understand another person's mind.

Welp. Glad you liked the fragments! And yeah, a tiny bit of why I wrote this was to turn something I'd seen quite often on its head--that the romantic savior will hold someone together after tragedy, etc etc, and that Rose/Scorpius is a pairing that can occur without any political connotation. As I've noted the plot does come in later chapters :)

Thanks again for your review!


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Review #6, by TheGoldenKneazle thursday

25th September 2012:
aargh Lily, how is it that you make even a 7000+ chapter feel like no more than a... something a lot shorter? Your style of writing is so addictive and I thought that the slightly choppier, more bitty and less intense-but-more-explained style fit in with Rose's mood on this date perfectly. Her high and low emotions were portrayed the best yet, and it felt as though I could almost reach out and touch Rose in her cracked and vulnerable state.

The way you've unravelled this part of the mystery is just amazing, because it feels like another part of the shell being peeled away; we can see the motivations for Rose's ice queen persona and connect with her even more now. I liked the more obvious hints about her family in this chapter, too, because it seemed to emphasise Rose's loss since we can compare this to the usual cliche of happy Weasley families.

And while the mystery concerning the absence of Rose's family has been partially uncovered, I feel like you've managed to develop the plot by another step again, frustratingly so! Rose needed Scorpius but pushed him away, and she now plots with her Uncle to bring down his father in the campaign for Minister... and meanwhile, her family's strange deaths have gone uninvestigated. Everything feels laden with suspicion and you have me searching for meaning in everything, which adds another layer to being able to climb into Rose's defensive skin.

I also adore meeting new characters that you bring in; your characterisation is just so wonderfully real and interesting, and every new person we meet makes me get really excited that they will be relevant to the plot soon. It's just all so wonderful, and while I'm sure I've used that word more than is strictly necessary in the past 25 reviews, I use with all my heart because you are so very talented and my vocabulary is downsized somewhat when I'm trying to squee coherently :D I am so glad I've been privileged enough to have the chance to read these stories, and will most certainly coming back for more!

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Review #7, by TheGoldenKneazle wednesday

25th September 2012:
I feel like every chapter brings more questions than answers, so intriguing is every turn of events. There were so many brilliant scenes in this which got me questioning exactly what we know about Rose thus far, and it's all so very addictive, not least because of how the mundane and emotional and remembrance and action-packed scenes are all woven between each other to create this constant level of tension.

Scorpius just became a whole lot more enigmatic here; your cleverly dropped hints did not prepare me for such high levels of intruiging past and sexual tension! It does feel as though part of Rose's reasons for creating her harsh shell have been uncovered, and I lovedlovedloved how you wrote the scene where she was desperate for him to listen to her and to communicate with him. It felt truer and less jagged than the other Ice Queen Rose moments, and the way you wrote it with a smoother flow and more doubts was more telling than all of Rose's coherent worries about him.

I'm ever so excited about discovering their past, though, not least because of the strange impact that it has on Percy and his career - and Molly, too, who knows some secrets and not others, who I can't help but wonder if she will end up creating some devastating destruction with her partial knowledge. I love how you write her as alternating between needy and at odds with Rose, because they have noticeable similarities and differences that only family can have.

It was surprising to discover that Hermione was dead, and I wonder if this will tie into later plot. I do love the poetic theme this has, though, especially the poetic references and how Rose knows her poetry too. It adds a layer of closeness to the reader, if that makes sense, because it's something that we both have in common. Eep cannot wait to read the next chapter!

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Review #8, by TheGoldenKneazle tuesday

25th September 2012:
If it's possible, I loved the poetic style of this chapter even more than the last; everything slips along so smoothly yet with such jagged emotions running through that the 6000 words feel so liquid and easy to fit yourself into since the emotion all feels a lot less... pretentious than other emotion-packed stories do. Favourite paragraph was definitely the one about Rose burning, I love it!

And SO MUCH AMAZING MYSTERY. Everything feels so splintered, and I love trying to put together all the pieces to make out what's happened with Percy and Scorpius and the Minister battle... it's so intriguing how there's this calm-before-the-storm sort of tension that Rose keeps referencing, and it's so completely enthralling.

And more indirect Scorpius! The way Rose's thoughts are all directed at him - or how they seem that way, at least - automatically make me desperate to claw closer to him, find out why they're involved, why Molly is disapproving of the connection. (And how Addae Jordan is involved in all of this too!)

Your characterisation is all so wonderful and brilliant; it's even easier to see how the icy weather reflects Rose's attitude, how she wears a mask and considers each move; it accompanies the chilling sensation of the reader realising what skin they wear, too. You have the Al-Rose-Molly group working so realistically, showing Rose's thoughts on them compared to her moments of connection to each. It strengthens the feeling I'm getting that they're splintering apart.

Also I totally recognised those poetic references ;) 'Invictus' is such a perfect poem to reflect Rose's walls and well, Shakespeare's just a vaguely famous dood, no idea what for... ;)

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Review #9, by TheGoldenKneazle monday

25th September 2012:
I really love this already -- it's very different style to what I usually read, but was almost immediately very easy to slip into and forget I was processing words and not in Rose's skin, fighting to get out.

Your characterisation is already very pulling and compelling, and I want to read on to find out what could happen to these people. I love how you showed Rose's uncomfortableness in her own skin but also in what she wants and should want; how unsatisfied she is with herself. It was easy to relate to, and she seemed a lot more real than other angsty characters who are simply angry at everything without any depth.

I like how you slotted together the different scenes -- or rather, the snippets of scenes that got a bit longer towards the end, so that at first we felt uncomfortable along with Rose trying to work out who was who and what was going on, getting a feel for her character. The slices of emotion and scenes were very telling because you didn't have awkward between-scene fillers to patch it together; it was more of a clean break, and so was more raw and precise (if that makes sense).

And your description and imagery - the cracking of her knuckle, the "cold hands, warm heart", the mundaneness twisting with the strange pull to Scorpius - it was all so beautiful and fit together in such a perfect flow! It was so easy to see yourself in those scenes because of that, and I loved it.

Your Rose was also very original -- no small feat when she's probably the most-written next-gen character -- and I can't wait to see more of her, and see what will happen to her; after all, nothing can remain this 'calm' for long, and I want to see more of Scorpius too! It's brilliant and I'm already desperate for more :D

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Review #10, by peppersweet wednesday

14th September 2012:
Lily, I have one word, and that word is 'dsldfjsdfhlsdvbslkjdsdfdfaswiu'

okay.

I read back your review responses and what you said made this story 'click' a lot more for me; Rose is really off and you're doing a brilliant job showing that in your narration, which makes you think ermahgerd dis girl whilst also sympathising with her. Or at least I do, anyway. I don't know what's happened yet but, somehow, my heart just goes out to Rose, and...yeah. idk. I'm not the best at sounding lucid in reviews, I know.

this fic is super serious but, jsyk, this line - I have always understood this about Louis: he, too, is an ice queen. - made me snort with laughter, I think I was just having flashbacks to fabulous Scorpius.

I'm listening to 'this is a low' by blur and somehow...it seems to fit this fic. I can't quite explain why.

also - Rose's letter really struck a chord with me.

(actually, I'm listening to NME's 50 saddest songs ever and it kind of fits this fic lololol. beats the time I was listening to ska and reading drastoria)

OH THE PROMISED RO/SCORP ENCOUNTER.

ugh this is perfect (sorry, this isn't the best review)

a line I loved - When Iíd found what was written inside, it was one sentence: Iím sorry Iím poor but I think youíre going to be published some day. - I don't know why I loved it, but the passages about their relationship were very...um...natural? They flowed so easily and gave me an instant idea of the sort of scorose this is, if you get me. And I found this line was the most touching of them all. Please don't ask me to explain why...you know me and explaining don't really go well together...how on earth did I get an A* in english lit? Best literary criticism EVER

I still can't quite put my finger on this fic, but I'm loving it so far. please keep updating!

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Review #11, by GubraithianFire wednesday

14th September 2012:
Oh my God, Lily. I'm sorry I'm not very coherent rn but oh my God. You know I'm bad at keeping up with fic nowadays, even worse at actually reading it at all, but I've never been gladder that I am reading something than I am right now because oh my God. I'm sorry, I'm out of practice at reviewing too, but since there aren't any on this chapter yet I thought I might as well take a crack at it.

I mean... I just... your writing really blows me away because somehow it just gets under my skin, in a way, and it's like you're telling me truths I never knew, maybe never wanted to know, and it feels so organic and deliberate and real and beautiful and terrible and adjectives and adjectives and even more adjectives. I think the first person narrative really heightens the feel and the atmosphere; typically I don't like first person especially in fic because there's a certain template of styles you get when you let an OC girl narrate an entire story, and you know what they are, but this is so rich and textured, but it reads very smooth. I remember going through the first chapter and since I was short on time and not very enthusiastic about reading anything (!!! horror), I was just skimming, and it was difficult to read just by doing that.

So then I went back (I really wanted to see why this was getting the praise it was -- not that I was surprised of course, given that this is you) and once I got into the pattern, it just... it was like going downstream on a river, and sometimes it was gently curving and sometimes it was trying to drown me (IN THE BEST POSSIBLE WAY), but it was flowing inexorably somewhere, to some greater ocean and hopefully catharsis/closure/etc for poor Rose (POOR ROSE OMG, and I thought I was always awful to my myriad Roses). I don't presume to know where you're going with this, but I don't want to know, because I want to experience it and lie on my back and let your story take me away /terrible metaphor.

This chapter in particular... well, it was a doozy. I see Rose attempted suicide (or do I see? I'm never sure what I'm looking at with this story), and also meeting Scorpius obviously is exciting. It's interesting that he still seems to love her or want her ('seems' being the operative word?), because somehow I assumed that they were totally over and Rose was pining for him in her own self-aware way (I hesitate to call Rose's sense of self 'self-aware', exactly, because I think that she both thinks she knows who she is/what she's doing AND at the same time has no idea about either of those things, so much of her behavior is extraordinarily self-destructive and she knows it but doesn't somehow, and I worry for her but I'm so drawn to her but ahem I use parentheses a lot in this review). But what almost eclipsed meeting Scorpius was getting more of Rose with her family, or rather her thoughts about being with her family. All of those sections, all of her worries about the family friendships become perfunctory and obligatory -- God, that is weirdly powerful stuff. Maybe just to me, but agh, it just chills me. Like: I have put so many secrets into this friendship that it has deteriorated to something like a family bond, something like obligatory, perfunctory companionship. And Now, I find, I am trying to keep myself inside, I am trying to get out. I think you have possibly shaken me all over again. I can't pinpoint what it is that strikes me so much about those lines and the others like it (You are not god, you are not god being another btw), but it's so straightforward and it shoots straight at my heart and I just want to cry, and I feel my own blood quickening and how. Yes, it's melodramatic, but it's so... it's ordinary, and it's something Rose is actually saying, and the disconnect between what anyone would ordinarily say and what she has said... good God I think I'm going to cry.

Well, okay, I'm not going to cry. But I do feel very... strange. I feel like you've mined something of me and put it into this fic and that sounds strange but it is really... personal and universal and incredibly specific and caught up in its own mythology, but it gets everything right. Rose's neuroses and paranoia and fears and worries, and OH I FORGOT, Percy going behind his daughter's back? And what Rose says (the Sometimes, I feel it's good for me line)? Just impossible. Insane. This just sweeps the audience off their feet and puts them in some new place when it's done. It's so strange and so magical and it strikes a chord. I'm sure anyone else reading this will say that different lines spoke to them, different characters and concepts, but there's just so much here and I don't know how you do it and oh my God.

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Review #12, by forsakenphoenix tuesday

7th September 2012:
iloveyousososomuch.

I don't know why but reading this chapter makes me want to cry - and it's not like it's sad, because it's not. But like the first chapter, I feel like I relate a lot to Rose and I dunno, I feel like you're writing me and it makes me feel all sorts of exposed.

There are so many lines in here that I just want to squish and hold onto forever. You honestly have such a beautiful way with your prose and I'm kind of dumbfounded at how you can arrange these words into such perfect sentences that speak volumes despite never really saying a lot.

I love this line, in particular: The castle on my side, nudging this body on to some kind of harmony with whatever darkness is inside coming out, rapidly, easily. It is not a splinter: it is a tear. I don't know and I'm probably misinterpreting this but the idea of trying to mesh yourself into one person, to sort of balance out the light and dark in you, is such a nice reflection of Rose. Sometimes I feel like I have too much dark in me and that it's hard to really find that harmony and I think Rose is struggling with that too. Also, basically this whole paragraph, but this part in particular was really beautiful: When I wrote to you, I felt myself touched by flame, and considered it a blessing, a fierce and determined sort of recompense for what had happened to me... All the imagery with the fire and all that. I loved it.

I really like the introduction to Percy and his fight for the Minister for Magic position against Draco and their pasts are sort of coming to light now and may or may not be working against them. There was a part there where Rose admits to telling Percy things that only Scorpius knew and it makes me wonder or if that will affect the political race at all? I guess we'll wait and see. I'm also very curious about what Rose is planning with the buttons and all that. I don't think you've really fleshed that out completely (and if you have, it's totally gone over my head, but well, I'm sure I'll figure it out eventually).

Addae is an interesting character. Very headstrong and sure of himself and he definitely intimidates Rose. But it's kind of scary how much he can read her, as much as he can being how closed off she is, I mean. I am a tad bit suspicious but will withhold judgement until their Hogsmeade date.

I still really like the dynamic between Molly, Albus, and Rose. It's really interesting to read them interact with each other. How there's that familial familiarity but at the same time, they feel worlds apart sometimes. The line Molly said about them not being friends anymore broke my heart.

Anyway, sorry for rambling and not being at all helpful. Um, CC...I did notice a couple of spelling mistakes but no biggie. I'm too lazy to pull them out but I do remember you spelled Hagrid's name wrong.

Oh! I remember what else I wanted to mention. Gah, Scorpius and Rose and the THESTRALS. I loved that scene, like Rose being able to see them and Scorpius can't, but staring at the place where there should be a thestral and imagining he could see it. I loved that part so much. I think it says a lot about their relationship somehow without actually going into detail, you know? Oh, I don't know if that made sense, but whatever..

I really do love this story and I'm excited to see where you go with it. I'm definitely starting to get more into the Next Generation and I love how much freedom their is with each character and how you can write them as your own. I'm so in love with your Rose (I think because I can relate to her) and I just know this story is going to be fabulous.

Okay, done rambling. LOVE YOUUU.

Author's Response: OK. THE AWARD FOR THE MOST TRAGIC TYPO GOES TO...LILY! how could I spell Hagrid's name wrong ;A; how atrocious ;A; I am going to fix that immediately after I finish this response because CREYS. and I really did look this over before I submitted it.. . . . .. . . ugh.

I know I as a writer and person struggle with self-destructive desires and the ones that are all wrapped around selfishness; they're two opposing forces but neither of them are good. Rose's struggle is something you really describe wonderfully, THANK YOU ♥

I have learned a lot of things studying creative writing in school, but one of them that really works for me personally is to pick apart a well-known and well-used phrase and ask why. Fire has always sort of mesmerized me--I mean, the phrases relating to it, because it's a really destructive force and I think originally that's what touched by flame should have meant, but we've watered it down because there are so many people in the world who just want to be dramatic. Ahem. I personally like the idea of being feverish over something, but I guess that's just because my own brand of zeal often feels like an illness. Yay.

Molly can be dramatic as well, but I really wanted to show two things: 1) Rose's self-imposed seclusion is hurting all of her relationships, not just the one she had with Scorpo, and 2) these kids are friends, but first and foremost, they're family, and they're particularly loyal to their own above others. And Rose has really broken down that loyalty by prizing Scorpius above her family.

I like that you're wondering whether or not Rose's writing to Scorp will have implications in Percy's political career because the answer is YES. So with that in mind, a lot of what Rose is doing is because of her family bonds with Percy and her trying to get ~things~ back from Scorpius that could be potentially damaging. I feel like I've just given a lot of the plot away but I didn't use specifics, so.

Umm no you're not meant to understand the buttons completely, yet, nope.

I love the Thestral part, too! I felt like it was a bit over-used and I wasn't particularly imaginative in the way that the scene unfolded, but I excuse myself for that because the part you comment on here is what I meant to be the focus and sort of the next "view" into Rose/Scorpius. SO IT ALL MAKES SENSE, YOUR WORDS ♥

Um Addae is someone to watch out for. He originally played a quite innocent part, but as I planned on, he got darker as a persona, go figure :P We shall see on Saturday, shan't we?

Aaand puh-leaz don't try to apologize for rambling, I love your rambles, Missy! Thank you forever for reviewing this, and so kindly ♥ LOVE /YOU/


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Review #13, by shoveitsunshine tuesday

7th September 2012:
W O W . Okay, so I've read both chapters and just - well, first of all, you have stunning stunning characterisations for everyone, and I'm really loving the RoseandMollyandAlbus interactions. Also, asdfghjkl your Rose is amazing and the perfect narrator. The little bit about the Thestrals and Scorpius almost seeing them and Rose actually being able to see them (?!) was really fascinating as well, and you've balanced the exposition of Percy v Draco & RoseScorpius's past... whatever, perfectly. Just - just, ahh, I wish I was more eloquent so I could say more, but just know that this story is fabulous and that it should continue on foreverandever. Ok.

Author's Response: :3
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kay I am really /trying/ for your sake to respond like a normal person but I had to get that out of my system.

I'm sooo happy at this review! You've touched on everything I worry about and put such effort into in such a positive way that it feels like--worth it, you know?--outside of the gratification I myself receive out of writing this.

Yes, Rose can see them and i LOVE YOU because that was one of my favorite parts of this chapter because it explains a lot about their relationship and the idea of, like, Scorpius staring at this air expecting to see something that he obviously wouldn't be able to is just kind of...weird but fitting for this chapter. SO THANK YOU ♥

Percy v Draco was actually one of the last ideas I had for this fic, but it fit in so well and worked to explain a lot of things that it's really grown on me and has become really integral to the plot. And, ahem, eloquence is overrated, I feel like this fic should be monument to that idea :P

THank you so so so so much for this review! It's really made my day and I am grinning like an idiot at my laptop right now.

♥ lily


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Review #14, by Tonks1247 monday

7th September 2012:
Oh. My. Gosh. Iím totally at a loss for words. Blown away and struggling to even come to terms with what youíve started this story out with. The writing was so hypnotizing and once I got into a pattern of reading, I couldnít stop. It was like a poem that has a certain rhythm to it and you canít help but keep going as you need more information as to what it is going on and itís just so easy to read and to follow and to wonder. Really, the entirety of the narration and even the dialogue had me captivated, even as I struggled to see what exactly it was going on.

And honestly here? Iím not sure I know exactly what was going on the whole time. Like, at all. But I definitely get the sense of Rose. I get her need to find something in everything going on around her and I get that she doesnít want to discuss what went on with Scorpius, who I believe is the Ďyouí she spends a lot of time referring to. And the whole complex thing about her skin, and spilling herself from a cut in her skin? Oh my gosh, imagery galore and I adored it. Especially this line: ďI am everywhere trying to get out of my own skin, I am always convincing myself the skin and the self are the same, I am trying to love what I have, and aching to change. ď I was just likeÖwhoa. It really got to me and made me think. It really was an interesting concept too. I mean, Iíve been at odds end with my skin, wondering how itís possible to be in it but not want to be but need to be. Itís really complex and I think you really did touch on that complexity and explore it well.

Other characters: Molly. Her and Rose going back and forth about cold hands and a warm heart and warm hands and a cold heart. Donít know precisely the intention there, but it really seemed to fit into their relationship and explain it in a way that no words really could. It was dynamic and really added something to Molly and Roseís characters, Iím just not quite sure what yet. Albus was also an interesting character. He seemed sarcastic yetÖI donít even know the words. His character is a lot different than Iíve seen in most other storiesÖactually, all your characters were a lot different than Iíve seen them in any other story which really was refreshing.

And really? Thatís all I got. It was phenomenal but I was at a loss as to what was going on. Iím sure as I get into further chapters, when the plot picks up as you mentioned, Iíll begin to understand whatís going on, but I think for now, that confusion is okay. It adds more intrigue and encourages me to go on and read the next chapter. [Also apologies if I confused you at any point in this. I think I'm getting a cold xD]

Great job!
Grimmerz

Author's Response: wowww this is an incredible review!! You're blown away? I'M BLOWN AWAY ♥

Omg you've said such nice things to me ;A; alksjdhflashfksdfasdjhflkajshdflkdsfakljhsdfakj

Ahem. Now I will try to answer you like a mature adult.

Well, thank you for being honest lol. I'm not sure I gave anyone anything to really like, /get/, plot wise. I don't think there's anything here except for Rose, so I'm so, so pleased that you "get the sense of her" ! And you're right, Scorp-o is "you" :D

You totally understand what that line meant. I can't add anything!! But thank you :D

Well, that's a bit of a drivel my mom and I say to each other sometimes, because I always have cold hands. I think you're right, there's this unspeakable friendship between Molly and Rose, and I mostly wanted Albus to be able to say his line. He's such a downer sometimes, but not as much as Rose :P Albus is definitely a bit sarcastic and actually I picture him as the downright, personality-based weirdest of them, even though Rose comes off as more strange because of what she's been through and how she's responded to it. In chapter 4 (which I've just finished writing), I do take time to explicitly--well, /explain/ what's happened in Rose's life, although what exactly is motivating Rose, the big "deception" that she'll pull through, is hinted at throughout the coming chapters :)

I'm glad that, for now, the confusion was okay to you: that's more than I could have hoped for, really! This review was really wonderful, I'm so so so thankful to you, and you were perfectly sensible even through a cold :P Get better soon and thank you again!

-lily


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Review #15, by peppersweet tuesday

7th September 2012:
'I think the worst of it is it's never happened, so it always could.' - okay rose stole my outlook on life

wait this is the awkward moment when I tell you I can understand and identify with rose because, well, I'm nothing if not neurotic and obsessed with the teeny tiny things that mean nothing and - okay this rose is a lot harder than me, but she's one of the first I've truly liked and connected with in fic. I'm not sure I'm meant to because there is something auspiciously dodgy about her, but I have. (I say auspiciously because I'm weary of the golden roses and I like the murky depth to yours)

oh, I liked the fleshing out of the relationships here - chapter one didn't give a lot away but still gave me a feel for the characters, so now knowing that this is stemming from a Percy vs Draco boss battle is...ooh. very helpful. in any other circumstance I might be team Percy because, as we have probably discussed before, Percy is my bias and my HP gpoy or however you'd phrase it - but those are very convincing reasons to vote Malfoy. very convincing. so now I'm just on tenterhooks to see how this political feud trickles down to such a personal level and I am /dying/ for the first exchange between rose and scorpius.

thestrals, too. one of the most intriguing of JKR's introductions to the HPverse and, well - yeah, a thestral is instant intrigue, in a nutshell. not quite sure I can quite put into words what I'm thinking but, again, I am seeing that rose can see thestrals and dying for that first exchange between her and scorpius. The fact that she can't even name him speaks not only volumes but encyclopaedias. entire libraries. wow this makes no sense.

in a nutshell: 50 house points for lily and pretteh pretteh plz update soon ♥

Author's Response: GLAD GLAD GLAD that you picked out that line. It's pretty much Rose "In a nutshell," to use your term :P

ROSE IS ME SO THEREFORE WE ARE TWINS. Okay, Rose is me + all the unfortunate stuff that's happened to her. I can't claim her family problems as resembling my own in any way. I'm glad you connect with her--I've moaned to you about how none of these characters is, erm, particularly likable and so I was worried about how people would react to them, because the main charge of the fic comes from caring about Rose or at least being interested in all the ~things!~ she's so hyperbolic over. SO YAY. I also am glad you appreciate her murkiness lol, and I will probably adopt the term auspiciously dodgy because...because it's gr9.

It all revolves around the Percy vs Draco in terms of the relationship between Scorpius and Rose, yes. And I'm glad it gives good background, I was hoping it might quell a /few/ questions for the time being.

I felt like I was going a bit overused with the thestrals but I WAS TRYING TO GIVE AWAY INFORMATION. Here's a summary if anyone ever reads these author's responses anyway: Rose has seen people die, oooh, ahhh, and Scorpius has /almost/ seen someone die, oooh, aahh, so.

First exchange happens in, er, I think chapter three! This was a beast of a chapter, THANK YOU FOR READING IT SO INTELLIGENTLY AND FOR THE HOUSE POINTS, WOOO.

And entire libraries exist in people's heads so that makes a lot of sense, if you get my drift, YOU HAVE BEEN SAVED. wow o k i'm done.

I hope to update weekly, so I hope this is soon enough, dame joloo ♥


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Review #16, by peppersweet monday

7th September 2012:
not that I wish to lower the tone but - there's an episode of family guy where Peter drops acid and ends up just feeling things going 'oohhh, these clothesss' etc etc. well I am perfectly lucid but right now I sort of feel like lying on the computer screen and going 'oohhh this FIC' and hoping vainly that I can absorb it by osmosis.

the mood of this one was really unusual, not in a bad way, I actually think that once I got used to it I /got/ the fic (although having said that I bet I've misinterpreted the entire thing). It seemed a little absurd in places - like an exploding marshmallow or rose flinging plant matter around the room - but then rose's narration was straight-faced, deadpan, almost s little...um...hysterical in places? It felt like a light next-gen comedy had been deconstructed and told by someone on the verge of a total breakdown. Um, I hope I got that right. I'm not sure I did and, after all, it is only chapter nķmero uno so I may be misreading.

your rose: I like your rose. I like her angst and her neuroticism, her determination to see /something/ in anything. I think, often, rose is portrayed a lot more like fanon lily (pretty, feisty, smart) whereas I see her as being a lot more like a blend of Ron and hermione's own personality traits, and not always the good ones. In my mind, rose has hermione's inability to accept failure and ron's occasional bitter jealousy (haha I mistyped that as butter first time round). I feel like, in this story, the glimpse of rose we've had so far is a lot more like the daughter of ron and hermione and I really appreciate that. I can't wait to see how her narration develops in later chapters.

okay, now your scorpius because - that's scorpius, right? - even if he wasn't named or given dialogue I felt like he was the chapter's centre if gravity, kind of (argh I'm sorry I'm not sure this review really makes sense). he's a gryffindor...right? well, I think he is, and I like it. I've put scorpius in every house except for gryffindor when I've written him but, here, it makes so much sense. not sure why and I don't think I'll be able to explain it but, it does. the power balance in fanon scorose can be pretty fixed (bad boy!scorpius and golden girl!rose) but I feel like it's inverted here - or in this first chapter anyway. I like that.

okay I feel like I made a mistake in formulating a lot of opinions as early as chapter one but - I like this. I really do. smashing start, lilyeth, and I shall move into le two post haste and please forgive me for all the drivel I've just typed~ ♥

Author's Response: julia, julia, julia...how could family guy /possibly/ lower the tone? I've written an attacking plant and a head-sized marshmallow!

And ofc, if you figure out how, I'm completely open to you fulfilling that plan.

Ugh yeah, this fic is going to anger the wrong readers or the right ones idk because the plot is like, NON EXISTENT in the first chapter and it's basically just a portrait of the mental landscape of someone who's possibly better off in the loony bin.

I like crack!fic, obviously, and a lot of the plot in Adventure/AIF creep up right next to crack!fic which is only emphasized by my narration--here I attempted (read: probably didn't do this at all) to pull on that inspiration of weird and in places O.o happenings that only Hogwarts seems capable of producing and then tell it from the point of view of someone whose sense of humour is widely off and who would see these as ordinary, almost banal cases or, in the case of the plant, as a way to get close to people she's lost. Rose is really off it, I think, more than perhaps I realised before lol. I'm just seeing it now answering this very /lucid/ review.

And basically yes, I want to procure a non-foretold ScoRose; not to be all "look this has no cliches" because it definitely does, but just because my interest in this couple is powered by what lies behind their family relations, too, as I think that's something often overlooked in fic I've read. And because I wanted to write a neurotic Rose, and put her through a bunch of tragedy and see how she deals with it, yo.

I think Rose is mostly a ball of flaws, and I'm glad you can see them stemming from Ron and Hermione haha. That's always the goal, because I don't want to completely disregard canon! And YES it's Scorpius, I feel like chucking his name in there at least once for readers but you're totally right--in addition to this whole story being a long and twisted love letter (which I haven't mentioned at all /in/ the narration but which will become apparent later I think, OR NOT, I could change my mind), Rose's fixation makes it impossible for her to call Scorp by name. For various reasons.

Scorpius--I've explained him a bit to you already in ~other~ places, but you're totally, hilariously right about the inversion of that trope and I didn't even realise it/do it on purpose haha. Scorpius is a really nice, good, if not daft kid, and, well, here is Rose, a ball of untamed explosive. She didn't always creep the pants off people, though.

I don't think you're misreading at all; in fact, your insight is doing this fic more justice than perhaps it deserves, and I'm s00per grateful for you stopping by to let me know your thoughts ♥

LOVO YOO JOLOO


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Review #17, by ariellem tuesday

7th September 2012:
So before I started writing this review I went and Favorited this story, also I looked up Invictus, and I'm going to read it after I'm done writing this.

Look at you getting me into poetry.

Well, as usual your imagery is amazing, and the plot is starting to come together. I have to say that I love the fact that you included both Percy and Molly in a positive fashion, I'm not sure if you noticed this before, but I'm a fan of Percy. :)

Anyway, great job!

Author's Response: bawww you're so sweet! I'm really, really glad you've enjoyed it.

LIFE GOAL #14 ATTAINED :D It really is a life goal of mine to get people who wouldn't normally to read poetry because I'm absolutely enamored of it, all genres and kinds. So YAY.

:D I'm glad you like the stuff I've included imagery-wise! It's pretty weird so I wasn't sure if it wouldn't be a turnoff for readers who aren't my faithful friends :) And I'm glad you like Percy and Molly! Percy is a lot like a surrogate parent to Rose, although lately their relationship is strained because of what Percy's asking Rose to do and cover up for the sake of his career. In general he's still a bit of a smarm, but to Rose he's really kind. They understand each other. And Molly, yes, she's under a lot of pressure at the current time period of this fic but she's a good person, too :)

I did read your AU Percy/Audrey and loved it :D Quite different from the down-to-earth running for Minister Percy in this fic but still, two sides of the same coin, eh?

Thanks so much for your reviews!!


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Review #18, by ariellem monday

7th September 2012:
So, I guess I should start this review with a confession, and that confession is that I have never read Invictus.

Which is probably why I feel like I'm missing a lot.

So here's a review from the POV of someone who hasn't read the poem. First off your style is amazing, I love how it just flows and your imagery is always at top notch.

With that in mind, I didn't really understand it, I understood the main plot of Scorpius and Rose had a thing and something happened and now she's sulking. Maybe it's just me being stupid (and bare in mind that at this time I have a fever).

You're a great writer. :) I'm onto the next chapter! :)

Author's Response: Hahah it's okay lol. Invictus is more for, like, tone of this fic because (and I'll just say it: let the records show!) Invictus is all about how the speaker of the poem has had horrible things happen to him but he's still a strong, courageous, able man who is "the master of his fate" and "the captain of his soul". So, for this fic's purposes, I've twisted the meaning of the poem to be totally inverted because Rose is a slave to circumstance and she's a mushy, weak character struggling to get back on her feet after she's been "bludgeoned by circumstance." SO yeah. It's not a lot to do with plot. I understand this chapter is a black hole for plot and nothing makes sense hahah.

No no no, you've picked up on the most important bits! This was mainly to show Rose's unfiltered character and her fixation on Scorpius.

THank you for your compliments, too :D You're so kind!

And thanks so, so much for review swapping with me, it was also a pleasure to read your stories :)


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Review #19, by MagicalInk monday

2nd September 2012:
Ooh. Okay, so, I have to thank HPFF for having this Story Information thingy because without it, I'd probably be completely lost.

So Rose has some big conflicts with herself, and I'm guessing 'you' is Scorpius? And that he was with Molly before? This is a really intriguing story.

I've noticed there's particular attention to body descriptions? No? Yes? Anyway, they're great and draw the picture very carefully, which I love.

I have to admit that the imagination parts, and those with 'you' (not sure if they're the same), were a bit too complex, and very lyrical. It is actually the only critique I have because we all know that your style is very lyrical, and it is the sudden sharp descriptions that catch more the eye, but maybe you could start slower with the imagery? So we have more time to adapt and soak in them.

Actually, I think if you keep the whole story with the same eerie descriptions I will get used to it, so just an optional comment then.

I really like the way you've decided to divide your story, chapters being days and a couple of paragraphs snippets skipping in time. As you already know, I love your characterizations and it is really great how every scene adds something about Rose we didn't know.

I also really like Al, he's not pessimistic but sort of... sarcastic? I don't really know how Molly is yet, very gourmande I guess :P It's really interesting how Rose (and the other two maybe too) like having this sort of power of doing stuff right, and sharing with the first years --not without leaving them in awe.

I feel so dumb, but I didn't get the plates joke? Did I miss something or is it going to be explained in later chapters? I'm incredibly curious as to what this whole practicing is for, what it is that isn't going to be easy, and why she's called the Golden Girl!

You have set a great cast of characters, and I'm already hunting that evasive plot :P And further Rose characterization... And meeting Scorpius :3

Gaaah another hooking story, me wantzz to undertandzzz!
_val

Author's Response: eheheh i had the premonition that not understanding would occur, which is why i plead that you be patient, because information DOES COME THROUGH, it just takes a few chapters. right now i'm more interested that we relate emotionally to rose than we know what's happening, but there IS a plot and i have already written it so i can guarantee it makes an arrival.

yes, yes! i'm trying to really be inside the body with this piece, because a lot of rose's trauma comes from -spoilers- trying to escape what life she has and what body she has and so now that that didn't work out she's really trying to get along with her skin, and she has to construct everything as a famous kid wanting to protect herself from interested people -end spoilers-

Mmm I will consider easing into the imagery, but allow me to say that I think this chapter is the most imagery-driven of all of them besides perhaps the last one, because when actual ~things~ start to happen in ensuing chapters i don't have as much room to play around with that, you know? To me, I'm writing Rose's story unfiltered. I'd like the reading experience to be where you're totally in her mind. It's probable that you won't understand everything exactly as a reader--even as a writer I do wonder about some choices I made--but I want this to be wholly Rose. She's a different story on the outside but we get to see in to her brain, and unfortunately she's a difficult person to understand completely.

Albus is definitely a bit jaded. I think all of the Weasley/Potters would be, with all the attention that, in this specific Next-Gen universe, they are always receiving. I think of all of them Albus is the most light--he's more willing to joke and more willing to not always evaluate his appearances to other people. Molly tries really hard to look like that too, but for reasons that will be revealed in probs chapter 3/4, or maybe 2 I forget actually, she's actually really tightly-wound as well.

Rose definitely enjoys the power that her seniority and name bring her, but she also has violent mood swings and then hates this power because she hasn't earned it completely. But who ever has?

The plates--it's more about, like, how Albus was treating the house elves like his personal minions--SO DON'T FEEL DUMB because he was just like, hey, I wonder if I could get a house elf to do illegal things for me because it belongs to me sort of thing. Rose takes offense at this, but considering how often she is always constructing her appearance, I think a lot of this episode stems from her wanting to appear a certain way to people--that is, unbudging on elf-rights.

:D Don't hunt tooo-ooo hard quite yet! I promise it's coming, so sit back for now and meet the characters :)

Scorpius enters outside of Rose's imagination in a couple chapters, too !

Thanks so much for this detailed review--I hope, without giving too much away, I've answered some of your questions ♥


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Review #20, by forsakenphoenix monday

1st September 2012:
Oh, Lily. Sometimes, I feel like your writing goes over my head. It makes me feel small and insignificant. Your words make my heart hurt, like I don't even know how to explain how much Rose's thoughts and actions pull at my heartstrings until this ache blooms in my chest.

I'm not going to say that I completely understand what's going on, but I understand the emotions, I think, and that's what is important until I can read more of this lovely story and wrap my head around Rose's story.

There are a lot of lines in here that I really love. The idea of Rose spilling herself out of the cut on her hand and I'm assuming Scorpius is the "you", right? So like...I don't know, him leaving her behind because he cares more about his safety, I think it might reveal more about their relationship or the aftermath of it? I don't know, I'm just thinking aloud I suppose.

I really loved this line too: I am everywhere trying to get out of my own skin, I am always convincing myself the skin and the self are the same, I am trying to love what I have, and aching to change. This just...god, I feel like I can relate so much to her thoughts and it kills me at how you can really get into the psyche of your characters and expose their inner secrets piece by piece, making them known to us, yet they're still mysteries until you're ready to completely reveal them. I dunno, I've always loved that about your writing.

I'm not really sure what else to say. This is a lovely piece so far and I can't wait to read the rest? That seems so contrived but I really do want to see where this goes and HOW IS IT POSSIBLE FOR ME TO LOVE YOUR WRITING EVEN MORE THAN I ALREADY DO?

Author's Response: Well. Well. I can't say I intended to make you feel that way haha ♥ I think, though, that the emotional bludgeoning that your heart has suffered at the hands of this story is something I appreciate. Which makes me sound like a sadist but that's okay in the creative writing world. I had a teacher once who told the class that a story has to hurt you--both the writer and the reader. He then proceeded to say it could hurt you in that you laugh too hard and get a stitch in your side, but what he meant was that, I think, a story has to make you feel. And I have been worrying to everyone who will listen about the reliability of these characters--none of them are specifically nice or trying to be good. Most of what they do is motivated by selfish desire, or survival instinct, and while I relate to Rose a lot as a person myself--when I write her I occasionally pull up my own journal for inspiration believe it or not eheh--I was worried that the emotion wouldn't translate. So that's why I'm saying I'm glad your heart hurts haha ♥

Well, at this point in the story you're not meant to understand what's happening so I would have been highly suspicious if you had been willing to say you understood it all completely. I'd be like, hey, gurl, then explain this to me, because I'm stuck...

And as I've said, the emotions for now, and getting to know the characters, getting into Rose's mind--those are the aims for me here, and it makes me so happy to receive confirmation from you that in at least one reader I've succeeded :)

Scorpius is "you." -spoilers-In a later chapter she explains why she's "writing" to him this way, but I didn't want to put it up front that this was written out because I feel like that'd put a distance between a reader and the narrator that I didn't want.-end spoilers-

The cut on her hand will continue appearing because for me it's a really strange concept--like, where is the soul of a person. I don't know. How do we know it's not in the hands? How do we know our soul isn't always spilling out of our pores, and we aren't all everyone else? I think Rose is haunted by that possibility and so cuts on her flesh hold significance to her. Similarly, she's spent a lot of time trying to keep her guard up, and these cracks and things are symbolic, to her, of that all breaking down.

Literally that line describes me as an emotional being. AND YOU APPARENTLY ♥ twins! I dunno, I guess one of the things that class in cw made me conscious of early on was that there's a power to the sequence in which you reveal information and withhold it. I've never been willing to tell everything a reader should know right up front because in being so close to a character it's 1) unlikely that they think about key points in their characterization that often and 2) more realistic and, a better tool for me, if I wait to release some critical piece of information until later when something external has prompted it. A lot gets let out, almost in floodgates and not until a ways off explicitly. But I think it won't be that hard to tell what's happened when I give the right clues if readers like you have paid attention to Rose closely throughout.

Scorpius--there's a bit of contention between Molly and Rose, obviously, about what happened between R/Scorp, but I can tell you you're definitely on the right track. Perhaps that's because Rose is quite obviously a neurotic. There was some concern of his safety involved in breaking it off, but soon, -spoilers- there's this whole political background that will become known and also shed light on what happened. I'm writing chapter four right now and it's the first time I've explicitly stated key facts, so it's a wait, but I think, as I said, clues should let the right readers know earlier than I say it. -end spoilers-

UMMM K YOU ARE TOO SWEET ♥


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