I love Cluedo, and this is so exciting. I love the fact it was with a lead pipe (neat touch) and your writing style is very detailed. I can't wait for moreAuthor's Response: Hey there! It had to be a lead pipe, classic Cluedo weapon, right? And the library, again, a classic Cluedo crime scene :P Thanks so much for the review! Report Review
Hello Aisha :)
Finally, I've had the chance to read this story! I've been eyeing it for quite some time now, simply because I love the Cluedo board game, and a good murder mystery is always something that I'll make time for.
And goodness, this was such an utterly gripping beginning. You certainly don't shy away from the gory details of the crime scene - and you do indeed have an eye for detail. There were descriptions that really made the scene so vivid and realistic, e.g. The brogues on his feet were glossy and well cared for, not a scuff mark etched on the tan leather. Professor Peach looked normal from the neck down, if you didn't take into account his carrara cold exterior. I just love the detail about the professor's polished shoes so much - it's quiet irrelevant to the whole violent murder scene, and I love it precisely for its irrelevance. It lets slip the sort of person Professor Peach was - what kind of habits he had (and from his shoes he sounds like a very neat spruce fellow).
And then there was that squicky bit about shards of bone and lead piercing his exposed brain uggh. I don't think I can unsee that. But it really does highlight the grim brutal nature of the murder. And I'm glad you raised the point of "typical" murder in the wizarding world - a flash of green light and everything is gone. This cold-blooded beating-to-the-head murder is of a completely different nature - it's personal for someone to physically inflict so much damage to someone else, to break the body of that someone. And I'm pretty sure this must have been such a shocking thing for everyone at Hogwarts, or even the entire wizarding world. Speaking of Hogwarts, this is just the perfect setting for a murder mystery! After all, so much strange stuff goes on within the castle walls.
I love that you're using James Potter's viewpoint :) Usually in Marauder fic centred around James we only get to see him struggle with the romantic aspect of his life (ahem, Lily) - at least during his Hogwarts days, so it's just so refreshing to see him involved in such a thrilling mystery like this.
Anyway, I loved this. I think it's a wonderful start and I'll certainly be dropping by to read the other chapters! Great work :D
-tehAuthor's Response: Hi teh! Ooh, there's nothing like a good mystery to sink your teeth into, especially one where the ending is surprising ;)
If you're going to do horror right, you can't shy away from the gore, but you can't make it overly so. The detail is something I've been taught since birth. Every single one of my English teachers would tell me to 'Show, not tell', to build up a picture of characters and events through episodes, rather than telling the reader what the characters and events are like.
Yep, well I hate slow beginnings, and describing a grim murder in the first chapter just throws the reader completely down at the deep end, right in the thick of the plot :P Yes! There would be no point in writing a fanfiction about an ordinary avada kedavra killing, because the whole point of fiction in my eyes is to explore the extraordinary. There had to be a vicious murder that occurred in Hogwarts, there just had to be, so I had to write about one :P
I think James' character is so much more important than the 'Guy whose only interest is capturing Lily Evans' that we usually see. Sure, it was a big part of his life, he loved her, but he was so much more than that. He became an animagus just to help out a friend; he joined the Order and openly defied Voldemort for chrissake! He's incredibly loyal and just, traits of his character that I wanted to explore more.
Thanks so much for the lovely review, I'm sorry I took forever in responding to it! Report Review
This story has just begun and I'm already loving it. Fantastic portrayal of the James & Sirius relationship by the way.Author's Response: Thanks so much for the review! Oh yes, I love writing a good bromance :D Report Review
Excellent! This chapter nicely moves the plot along, laying out the conditions under which James moves from a witness (as discoverer of the body) to a detective. The style in this chapter works much better, making this chapter very easy - and fun! - to read. :D
What particularly stands out is that he chooses to become a detective because he feels so much over the death - it has nothing to do with proving himself or inflating his ego, but rather with the connection he formed with the scene in the previous chapter. This is fantastic to see, not only because it places James-as-detective in a more interesting relationship with the case, but also because of its affect on James's characterization. As you mentioned in the McGonagall scene, James has matured into an adult, and with that maturation, he has become someone quite serious and driven to set things right. It shows in the scene with Sirius because, from what I gather, Sirius hasn't yet matured - he still does his homework late and burps in that annoyingly adolescent way. You've placed James in an interesting position - it's not like other portrayals of him that I've seen, and now that he is acting as an amateur detective, I'm interesting in seeing how he handles the case. You've done amazing things with James's character so far, making him refreshing and new, more like the "legend" we catch glimpses of in the books.
The classroom scene was great to see because they're often left out of stories. You don't let us forget that James is still a student and that his time will be taken up by his regular activities (on a side note, being a detective on top of playing Quidditch, taking classes, and being a Marauder will be a challenge!). I liked how poor Slughorn was out of his depth - it suits his character well, and also suits the way that Rowling portrays her teachers as human and flawed. What I'm less certain about is that Lily was laughing at him in a slightly obvious way. Slughorn's memories of Lily don't fit with that kind of behaviour, and while he may have chosen to forget, it still seems cruel for Lily to do that. It's the kind of thing that she dislikes from the Slytherins.
Overall, you've done great work with this story so far! It'll be great to see how the mystery plot develops now that James is ready to start detecting. :DAuthor's Response: Hello again!
Whilst he is still growing up, he has matured from his fifth year. He has this great sense of justice instilled within him, and helping out in the case allows him peace of mind. He'd be antsy otherwise- he's not one to let others take the reigns, especially in cases of right and wrong where he feels the need to input. Sirius is a big kid at heart, and even when he's middle aged, we still see him portrayed by Rowling as an impulsive teenager. It would be wrong to write him as 'serious'- no pun intended.
Just because he's a fledgling detective doesn't mean that he can stop with his education ;) Slughorn is this bumbling, rotund and severely annoying man who has his heart in the right place. Him and transfiguration don't seem to go together well... Lily doesn't mean harm; the kindest of people will laugh at things they know are wrong to laugh at. Perhaps I can add in a sentence or two to make it clear that she didn't have any malicious intent.
Once again, thanks for the review, it's really helping me pick out what is needed to be refined :D Report Review
Finally here for your requested review! I apologize for taking so long to get back to you, and hopefully my review is still useful to you. I'd really like to continue reading this story because your introductory chapter puts forward an fascinating plot. The idea of James Potter as a detective is exciting - I've not seen it before, and I'm interested in seeing how you integrate the mystery storyline with the canon history of the Marauders and the First War. There's so much that you can, and it's exciting to consider the possibilities!
One thing I like about this first chapter is how you've described Professor Plum, revealing tidbits of information about his appearance and personality throughout the chapter. It's a wonderful example of showing versus telling, and by the end of the chapter, I feel as though I have a solid grasp of who he was and why someone might want to kill him. The fact that the murder weapon was a pipe, while perfect for the board game, is more curious within the wizarding world, and I look forward to seeing how it figures into the solution. Like James pointed out, all witches and wizards have the ultimate murder weapon in their hands - their wands - so to use something else both makes the case easier and more complicated. It either suggests that the murderer planned this ahead of time, or that it was a spur-of-the-moment thing, a crime of passion.
Another excellent thing about this story are the details you add about James's experience as the one who discovers the crime and has to do something about it. You remember to make James human, having him throw up when he sees the body - and the part that I thought was just brilliant was when James compares Plum to his father, and imagines what it would be like if his father had been the victim instead. It gives the story more emotional impact and reveals a lot about how you're choosing to portray James, how you've given him this imaginative ability to see more than just what's in front of him. It's an ability of the best detectives, and it's only another reason to enjoy your story.
By way of criticism, I can only offer something that's more taste-based than anything, so take this however you'd like. Many of your descriptions are wordy, your syntax taking on this formal style that needs smoothing out. So for instance, look at this sentence: "In fact, it was finding hard to produce even a semi likely motive for the brutal killing of the well known Professor." Who is the subject of this sentence? What does "semi-likely motive" imply as opposed to just "likely motive"? Consider going through, weeding out the unnecessary words, and checking over the sentence structure. There are some great sentences in here, like the one about Chinese whispers, but on the whole, watch that the style doesn't confuse the meaning of your words.
Overall, you've done very well with this first chapter, and I'm looking forward to seeing what happens next with this story! :DAuthor's Response: Hey Susan! I'm sorry for not responding for so long- I've been caught up in the whirlwind that is summer exams :P
That is exactly what I've been told by all of my English teachers since birth- show, don't tell. It's been integrated into my brain so much that I don't think I could ever forget it! If the murder was committed using magic, the case would be normal and there wouldn't be much of a story behind it. Whereas with a muggle method of killing, it does become much more of an enigma which is something that I believe appeals to James' character.
Definitely- James is still in school, he isn't a fully fledged adult yet. He's been sheltered by his parents and he's been sheltered by Hogwarts and with this murder, a cold harsh reality hits him. If he acted normally, he wouldn't be the character I perceive him to be- a character who acts with his heart more so than with his head.
That is a flaw of mine. I know what I want to say, but sometimes I don't know how to say it. It'd be much easier if the reader is in front of me, because then I could use my hands and my body language to get across my message- something that I do a lot. But, they are called readers for a reason, they're not an audience, so I'll definitely look over that.
Thanks so much for the review, and thank you for giving me the plunny too! You should know that it was the Halloween 'A Game of Clue' over at TDA that you and the staff put on that inspired me to write this. For that I am eternally indebted to you. ;) Report Review
Oh wow! I certainly wasn't expecting Narcissa to join the team! I wonder how that's all going to work out?!?
And I am SO mad with Snape right now... but I really, really hope he isn't the killer. And I also hope Lily and James make up soon!
Anyway, another great chapter dear, and I can't wait for another!
Update soon please!Author's Response: I wasn't expecting Narcissa to join the team either, but my hands were saying otherwise and BAM! Before I knew it, I'd included her :P Oh, well, you'll just have to read on and see, there's another Narcissa scene next chapter.
Snape's an evil git. End of story. He he, I'm not going to tell you if he is or isn't *waggles eyebrows* Lily and James will definitely make up soon though, I can tell you that, I'm not that horrible :D
Thanks so much, I'm almost done with Chapter 5 but I don't know when it'll be up...curse you exams! Report Review
I think Dumbledore picked the right people for the job, too! They've already found out one tidbit of information, and they've only just started! I can't wait to see where things go from here!
10/10!Author's Response: They're better than the Aurors! But they are no where near close to catching the killer, it's going to a long haul of collecting information and witness statements and the like :P
Thanks so much for the review! Report Review
I love this chapter, but for two separate reasons!
The first: I really love how you've given James a more sensitive side. He's always portrayed as a bit of a prat, so it's nice to see him grieving and, well... being mature!
Second reason: I LOVE James' "call to action" moment, if you get my meaning. He may not be done grieving, but he decides it's time to move on, to find Peach's killer. Brilliant!
And the hooded figure at the end is oh-so suspenseful and intriguing!
Well done dear!Author's Response: James is mature and sensitive, he just doesn't show it much being a teenage guy :P It takes something major like a murder to change someone and hopefully he'll grow into a man because of this.
Out comes Detective Potter! It's one of his ways of dealing with his shock and grief, he doesn't strike me as someone who would sit down and do nothing, just no.
Ah, I hope you don't collapse or something from the mystery :D I know I would, I normally do at cliffhangers!
Thanks again Jayde! Report Review
Wow. This is a very interesting and intriguing first chapter, dear! Right from the first line you've jumped right into the action and got the reader (in this case, ME) hooked!
The plot you've got going is awesome, and your description is amazing!
10/10 and off to the next chapter!
~JaydeAuthor's Response: Hello! I hate slow beginnings, I just hate them. I wanted very much to throw my lovely readers into a disoriented first chapter here they are immediately met with death and they have no clue what is going on :P
Thanks so much for the review Jayde :D Report Review
Hey Aisha Iím here with your third review :)
Haha I take liberties with their ages too, and it was fun to include Narcissa into the story. Even though it was slightly strange at first to her wanting to help the others out, at the same time it seemed to work and I can imagine her joining their little crew of detectives. I canít wait to see how the dynamics of the group change with her being there.
Ooh so we get the Coronerís Report and it is the lead piping which did it. Ah Iím really loving this murder mystery, and I have read some before which try and include different elements into the story, but they never seem to work as well. Whereas you concentrate fully on them solving the mystery and it works so much better.
I really liked that scene with Dumbledore and James it was really well done, and I can imagine that their relationship would have been like that. You got the right balance of formality as itís a student-teacher relationship, but then the closeness due to James being head boy. I think my favourite moment of that scene was when James swore as Dumbledoreís reaction to it, was so him.
Ah Snape is evil! How dare he cause an argument between James and Lily. I really liked that scene too, and I can imagine that Snape would react it to it like that, it fitted his malicious nature he had back then. Of course he would do so to make James look bad in front of Lily. Her reaction to it was great too, and it was nice to see that even though her and Snape werenít friends anymore she still had some loyalties towards him, as I believe that would have been the case.
The only thing I can say to improve is your grammar when dialogue is involved. Like here for example Ė ĎďHonestly James? I have no idea.Ē Dumbledore admitted.Ď it should be a break after the idea, as the next part of it is attached to the dialogue, and here ĎďBye Sir,Ē He smiled,í the smiled isnít related to it so you need a period not a break. I also noticed that when you included a break you capitalised the next thing, which you donít need to do. Itís easy to slip up on, but easy to fix to so it isnít something major :D
Overall it was another really good chapter!
-KianaAuthor's Response: I love writing Narcissa! She's just such an interesting character to write because she's a Slytherin and she doesn't have to worry about honour and rubbish, she can be as manipulative as she wants :P It is strange... but this is a strange event ;)
This mystery has consumed the characters and I wouldn't be able to write them doing any other major things whilst there's a killer loose. I mean, come on, if I was in Cluedo, then I don't think I'd be able to eat or sleep until I caught the criminal :P
I wanted Dumbledore's relationship to James to be similar to Dumbledore's relationship to Harry, but not the same ;)
He he, Snape is a bad guy! He's so twisted- he allowed himself to get ruffed up just so he could destroy Lily's image of James as a good guy. Lily's feelings towards Snape are very much mixed- I don't think she loves him, but he was her best friend for years and that kind of relationship is hard to turn your back on.
Yeah, my dialogue is something that I need to work on! I haven't got around to editing everything accordingly as it's something I've been told in reviews that I've been doing wrong. I had no idea though! When I have the time, it'll be sorted out ;)
Thanks again for another review! Report Review
Hey Aisha Iím here with your second review!
I really liked the Hansel and Gretel analogy, Iíve always wondered how people managed to solve crimes in such a short time frame and the use of that analogy described it perfectly. I really liked that scene with Lily and James too. Iím glad that you didnít go fluff and romance overload as that would clash with the idea of the story as mysteries arenít romance focused. We still got an idea of their relationship and how they cared for one another which was great.
I spotted minor thing here ĎToo many questions, too many theories-Ď I think there should be a space between theories and Ė and it was done again here ĎWith a swish of his wand, a door down the corridor creaked noisily open-Ď it was a really minor thing and I wouldnít bother changing it unless you plan on editing the entire chapter.
I really liked the humorous relationship you developed between Sirius and James, it was just them really. They seemed so keen to go out and investigate everything and find out the cause of this murder you almost wanted to go in and help them. I liked the reference to the Hollywood films and how their investigation differed as it showed what you think things may be like it often doesnít turn out to be the case.
I loved the descriptions of Remus being the scientist they fit my mental image of him perfectly. I can just imagine them all sitting there in awe of his scientific abilities, in fact, I was sitting in awe with them as Iíve always wanted to be like that but I wouldnít know where to start. And you were nice to Peter and kindly phrased he would be more of a hindrance rather than a help.
You could get a sense of the drama with all the houses sitting with one another as it reminded me of the battle of Hogwarts. I really liked how enthusiastic Dumbledore was about the dandruff being found, it would only be him to have such a reaction to it. It also means that weíre one step closer to finding out who the attacker is and I canít wait to find out!
-KianaAuthor's Response: Hello again!
I love Hansel and Gretel, we did it in primary school for the Christmas play and I was Gretel :P But traces left behind by killers are like bread, they aren't there forever and you have to be quick. There's an American TV show that my cousin got me started on when I was out there for 2 weeks, called 48 hours. It's basically about the first 48 hours after a major crime has been committed, and if you don't apprehend your suspects before those 48 hours are up, your chances of catching your criminal decrease dramatically.
I love Jily! Their relationship isn't 'sappy' or 'cute', it's a deep love for one another. But James and Lily don't strike me as characters that will display their feelings towards each other. Sure, James might have asked out Lily a billion times, but he's never seriously sat down with her and talked about his feelings for her because in my eye, he's scared of rejection.
I'll definitely check that out, thanks for highlighting that out to me! I'm sure I'll edit this some day so I'll be onto that :D
Oh, the bromance! If they didn't have their innate humour, then one, this story would be too dark for anybody's liking and two, I don't think their characters would be able to cope. Hollywood murder mysteries can be clich√É¬©, but this is not ;)
There had to be a scientist of the group, and it sure as hell isn't going to be James, Sirius or Peter. The four of them will make a fabulous CSI unit, with Remus in the lab, James and Sirius in the field and Peter, just being Peter. It was really hard to be nice to him, but he's not a traitor just yet, so I had to be nice to him, the filthy rat :P
Dumbledore excited about dandruff, it does seem right ;) One step closer, but nowhere near finding out the killer's identity!
Thanks for the review Kiana :D Report Review
Hey Aisha Iím here with your first of five reviews :D
I really liked how you showed that Professor Peachís death didnít just affect James and the teachers, but the students too. It was really great that you chose to dwell on in to so much in this chapter as we really got a sense of what a profound impact it must have made on them, and how they didnít really know what was going on at all. I think the addition of Aurors being there definitely added to that sense of scariness.
The way James was so affected by it was also great, as I can imagine finding a corpse must have been one of the most traumatic times in his life. His actions and thoughts were perfectly succinct, which I find is another thing people often forget to do once a death has occurred. I felt bad for James as he seemed to be searching and searching yet not finding any answers. You could sense his aggravation about it when talking to Sirius.
The conversation between him and McGonagall was also great, and you could tell how Peach had affected both of them so much. It seemed fitting that he and McGonagall would be close enough to have that conversation, as I always imagined that McGonagall would have had a soft spot for him. I also liked as we got to learn more about her background which was really useful as we could place her character into context.
I donít know what your Dumbledore was like before Jami helped you, but either way he was great, and it was so him to let James go and investigate the murder in not so legal ways :P I really liked the last bit where you showed the Aurors as it reinforced that this was a murder mystery first and foremost and one can never really predict what will happen in them.
A great chapter, and I canít wait to read on :D
-KianaAuthor's Response: Hey Kiana!
When I was writing this chapter, I was thinking about what it would be like if my English teacher (she's a really great teacher and a really great person too) was murdered. I couldn't gloss over the Professor's death as it wouldn't be realistic and especially with this story, I want my readers to feel as if this could have happened. Aurors or any authoritative figure have that ability to instil a sense of security and a sense of fear at the same time, which is unique to their positions.
I would be terrified if I found a dead body of someone I knew, and James, despite all the bravado that he might put up, is still a teenage boy. James is naturally inquisitive, and in my mind, he's every part the detective. When he can't find any answers to a case that's personal to him, well...
Even though McGonagall always has to tell the Marauders off because of their bad behaviour and whatnot, she definitely still has a soft spot for them and they for her. She never changes and has this fire within her that the four boys admire. The conversation between James and McGonagall is certainly one of my favourite conversations to write because they are both out of character- James is more mellow and McGonagall's guard has slipped and we see more about them because of this.
My Dumbledore before Jami was a little less vague and Dumbledore-ish :P Dumbledore doesn't follow the Ministry or their laws, he's separate from them, above them even and boy does he know it! I couldn't resist the ending, I just couldn't ;) I had to add a bit of mystery to the grief.
Thanks for the review :D Report Review
Gah Awesome story so far! Very unique and unlike anything I've read so far! Very well written and interesting. Hope you update again soon please!Author's Response: Thanks so much for the kind review! *hugs* I'm glad you like this story so much, it's my baby, so hearing a positive response makes me feel like I'm on cloud nine :P Update is imminent! Report Review
Hiii! Finally here! And rather sad; I hadnít realized this was my last chapter to review! But Iíve added it to my favorites so I can keep up, yay!
I did not except Narcissa! This is exciting! And Sirius! See, this is why I donít leave running reviews. I canít get a single coherent thing out.
Iím really curious as to not only Narcissa offering to help, but what she knows and how she knows it. I love being curious, itís such an exciting thing. You do mystery very well, you know. Setting up the scene for delivering the characters worked really well for this, especially considering just who you delivered.
This was such a packed chapter! So many characters and I loved it! The scene with Severus was both intense and sneaky. I canít help but be certain he set all that up with what he said. He knew James would defend Lily and then see him doing it and ugh. Slimy thing.
Back tracking to the section where James gets the letter; I loved Siriusís impatient nature. That is so true with my head canon and it just made me happy to see it play out in the story. I canít imagine him being a joy to be around when heís like that, haha!
Then Jamesís determination during the meeting was perfect. You really bring out his bet qualities well. And I really think that Albus was quite proud of that quality. Now I just want to hug everyone.
I think you keep a story moving really well. You know when to slow down and let the scene play out, and then when itís appropriate to bypass a few things and get us to the next thing of importance. Itís something that I think a lot of people struggle with, but you donít seem to at all!
Awesome chapter, and I do hope you update soon ♥
JamiAuthor's Response: Jami! I swear I thought I responded to this ages ago, turns out I hadn't...yeah *hides*
I didn't expect Narcissa either, but then the idea came to me and she's far too fun to write to not include her :P And your review is coherent, don't worry ;) I'm going to be honest with you, the only reason I think I do mystery well is because I have no clue what's going to happen, therefore the reader has no clue either... I've changed the plot line and who's going to die and such about 10 times so far :P
I hate Snape. I wanted to show James still has that rashness and fierce protectiveness over Lily even though it's mellowed over the years. Of course, Lily didn't see James trying not to hurt Snape which is sad :(
Sirius is impatient and impulsive, and I had to channel my inner child when I was writing that, but it was fun to write :P It's what makes him him, y'know, and if I didn't include that he wouldn't be the same Sirius that everyone loves.
HUG THEM ALL! Determined and stubborn are definitely qualities I'd stick to James, he's going to see this thing through to the end. It's also part of the reason why I chose him to be the protagonist rather than Lily as I originally planned.
I hate slow stories. It really irritates me when I'm reading a book and I have to trudge through the beginning, but I also hate stories that don't develop the characters, so I had to balance between the two. I still have a few more characters to introduce properly, such as the girls, but keeping the plot moving is important too!
Thanks so much for the awesome review Jami! Report Review
Hey there! Thanks for the swap! :) It's odd, you know, I think I've seen this mentioned a couple of times around the forums, but never had the time to stop by...
Anyway, I love a good old-fashioned murder mystery and this is definitely one of those! I love how little information you give away - just that someone's dead, no one knows who did it, but there's already confusion over how he died and why. It's great because you're not flooding us with characters we don't know and possible motivations which we know nothing about, you've just given a body. It's pretty impressive stuff, tbh.
The technical detail you give when describing the body is great. I'm not a medical student, but a couple of my friends are, and it's great that you've actually looked it up and included it. It gives another sort of aspect to this - the authorities are confused. Given the time of this, it's even more interesting.
I liked the details in this as well: the Head Boy handbook (bahaha, I love that! Presumably also scribbled on/annotated by generations of head boys, lol), the idea that the corpse itself is confused, the detail about his clothes and the references to both the war outside and Moaning Myrtle. You're really putting me exactly inside Hogwarts, you know, with all the gossip and all the tales that people would tell about the school if similar things had happened.
I like your James so far, as well. I like how even though he's a Gryffindor, you didn't make him have a Stomach Of Steel, and not throw up at the sight of the corpse. People can be brave but be ill at the sight of things like that - scenes like that aren't pretty and they're never as 'set out', if I can use that phrase, as they are in films, you know. And then how he's reminded of his own father, just coz they're about the same age... well, you would be, wouldn't you? James seems like a very well-rounded character and very like what we know of him from canon - intrinsically loyal to a fault, brave, but a kind and good-hearted person, really. I know this is written when he's grown up a bit, since he's Head Boy, but I'd love to see how you work in his rivalry with Snape, perhaps some of his more boyish acts, and his relationship with Lily - if, of course, you do include those!
The ending is spokyyy. changes in lighting like that are always freaky, but in Hogwarts... with all the paintings and the stone staircases/walls/etc. and the suits of armour and everything... imagine how much more creepy that would be... woah.
So yeah, I really enjoyed this. You have a really lovely style in this, it's pretty captivating, and I'm really curious to find out what happens and, eventually, who did it and why... I may just have to favourite this and check back daily for updates ;)
Aph xxAuthor's Response: Hey Aph!
Everyone loves a good murder mystery! I was pretty much brought up on Scooby Doo and CSI, so yeah, murder mysteries are ingrained into my mind :P I wanted to this right and I figured that the detectives aren't going to know everything from the get go, it just doesn't happen. Besides, where's the fun in that? No good killer would let themselves be traced and I'm planning for this killer to be a good one :D
I love forensics, not that I'd ever go into that field since that would probably detract my love of it away slightly, so I wanted to this to be factual, adding to realism.
Omg, I forgot about annotations! Right, I can play around with those now, I can just imagine it, a previous Head Boy adding info on how to control the munchkins :P Sometimes hpff can forget about how Hogwarts works, rumours and gossip was always a major part- the Basilisk and Goblet of Fire anyone?- so I had to include that :D
My form of bravery is different to the shining knight in armour kind. Plus, James was always pampered by his parents, I doubt he would have seen something to this severity before. Of course I'm going to include those! If you just read on... well, I'm not spoiling anything ;)
They are creepy! I wouldn't go out after curfew, simply because walking around a dirty great castle in the middle of the night with paintings that move and suits of armour that talk is bloody scary :P
Thanks so much Aph for the lovely lovely review! *squishes* Report Review
Wow, really loved this chapter.
I love the style you're using. The shorter sections all playing into the bigger picture work really well for a murder mystery, and you're really letting that aspect of it come first. I think that you would make a very good detective, m'dear. The way you took us through James's questioning, giving us bits of his dry sense of humor as well as showing us how frustrated he was getting, was really great.
Having Lily sort of intrude upon his problems and make him feel a bit better was a very sweet touch. She didn't say anything huge, just a small reassurance. I think it fit in perfectly.
I LOVE when people go into explanations about how something works. When you had Peter asking the questions and Remus explaining, oh gosh that was gold for me.
Sorry, backing up back to the section before. The way they got around the Aurors was very creative and Marauder-ish. It was simple but highly effective, and I loved James's thoughts regarding them. Again with those bits of dry sense of humor... they're really, really great.
Addressing the students will hopefully make James's job easier after this. Maybe they'll be more willing to cooperate? All I know is that the imagine of Remus just telling Dumbledore, 'He has dandruff,' is going to keep me giggling for the rest of the night. But we know our killer has a scalp condition! That's good, right?? haha!
This chapter as actually one of my favorite so far. And I love that, though you're adding bits of characterization and really giving us an idea of who these people are, you aren't focusing too much on that. I feel like you're letting your murder mystery take front and center, and all the characters are forming very well around that.
You're dialogue punctuation is off, and I thought I'd mention it because it was a few different instances.
So places like this:
--ďBrilliant, just brilliant,Ē James sat down, grabbing a handful of his, thankfully dandruff free, hair.
You would want to have a period instead of a comma. Because, "James sat down, grabbing a handful of his..." stands alone. It doesn't depend on the dialogue.
The same is true for this one:
---ďHi James,Ē The scent of soap and clean cotton alerted him to the arrival of Lily Evans, though he barely managed a Ďheyí to acknowledge her presence.
Then places like:
---ďSir,Ē The boys chorused.
The 'the' would be lowercase because it's relating directly to the dialogue and how they spoke it.
But when I get typing fast I am the queen at screwing this up, so you may already know all this and just had a few typos :P. If that's the case, feel free to tell me to zip my mouth :P.
I really, really loved this chapter. I'm going to get ready for bed then read the next while I'm laying down, so I can review it in the morning :)Author's Response: Whoa, that was a monster of a review Jami :D
I really really like detective stories and my love for CSI borders and probably falls on the obsessive side :P I think I'd suck as a detective though, I can't even write this properly- trust me, I don't even know who the killer is at this point, his character is still being formulated *hides*
I just had to include some fluffy Jily, we don't want it getting too dark. Plus, Lily's described as a kind woman by Remus, so I've always thought of her as the mother type and I wanted to display that, hence- the Jily scene!
Those explanations are an insight into chemical analysis techniques which would be used IRL. Out of the Marauders, Remus would be the scientist, he's an oddball like that- I mean, what boy actually reads? Having him explain also helps me in science class, if I can explain to my readers through Remus what titrations are, then I'm not going to forget myself during exams :P
Ha ha, I just think that Remus has this kind of blunt humour which I'm going to have fun with :D That speech of Dumbledore's was horrible, I don't think it's long enough- he does call the whole school together to only talk for 30 seconds- but I didn't know what else to say! Hmn, it's possible people will be co-operative but what about the Slytherins and those with underhand motives? They definitely won't be!
I didn't want to add heavy characterisation paragraphs and chapters although that is what these first few ones have been about, as well as establishing the plot. I think it'll be better for me too if I develop my characters as I go on :D
Yeah, I know my dialogue is off, Amanda spotted that out to me a few weeks ago and I haven't had the chance to correct everything :P I'm so used to putting a comma at the end of dialogue if it isn't an exclamation mark or a question mark as opposed to a full stop. We don't do a great deal of OF writing over here in English which is pretty sad, so it's a problem that I've only been aware of for a short period. I'm going to go back and correct it though and if you spot it on in later chapters, don't hesitate to call me out on it :P
I just realised how long this response was, but hey, it was a long review ;) Report Review
Hi there my dear! Yay for the next chapter! Iíve been wanting to get back to this!
I really enjoyed your take on the aftermath of Professor Peachís death. I think the students and faculty, and the way they were affected, felt very genuine. Their professor has been with some of these kids for seven years, then to see him go in such a terrible way will of course take a toll on James. Iím really happy that you let that happen, by the way. That you made it clear he was upset by the death, and that he didnít just shake it off.
The conversation between him and Sirius was really well done. I liked James sort of admitting what was going on inside him without really offering full disclosure, and Sirius giving James what he needed to make him understand that his feelings were okay. Like he said to James, after seeing a dead body it would be terrifying for James NOT to feel anything.
I was curious why James asked her how she knew Professor Peach. Unless Iím missing something, they would have been colleagues, right? Maybe you meant how well did you know Professor Peach?
I thought the conversation between them was perfectly bittersweet. Itís still such a sad occurrence, but it was also nice to see Professor McGonagall open up a bit. And I loved the detail about her husband! I also liked how, even under the circumstances, James didnít seem incredibly comfortable. Something that would be natural when talking with a teacher.
The only section that I felt was off was the last with Professor Dumbledore. It was written so, so well -- nothing about your writing was off, just his attitude. He seemed too casual with James, and too direct. We usually see him use Mr and Miss followed by the studentís surname, and you often donít get a straight answer from him. Maybe making his sections a bit more... confusing... would help? Like:
ďWhatís on your mind?Ē Dumbledore put his fingers together as the gates to Jamesí... --
I loved how you described what came after Dumbledoreís question, but the way he asked it felt too direct for him. Something like--
ďIs there something you wish to speak with me about, Mr. Potter?Ē---
May sound more Dumbledore-ish. The man is a nightmare to write :P
I really enjoyed this second chapter, and will be continuing to the next very soon!
JamiAuthor's Response: Hey Jami! I'm getting onto your reviews very soon, don't worry :D This chapter was very much about showing the effects of Professor Peach's death and starting up the investigation. I wanted it to be realistic, and I just kept thinking about what it would be like if one of my teachers died and went from there ;)
Sirius' and James' relationship is one that I love to explore- they're best friends, extremely loyal to each other, but they're guys so they're not exactly going to go shouting out about their emotions to each other, that's why James was slightly more reserved than say Lily would be to her friends.
I didn't realise that would be confusing. None of the other teachers were given leave to go to Professor Peach's funeral since they were mere colleagues and I don't think they asked for it, and James picked up on that and realised that they must know each other outside of Hogwarts. I might have to add in a sentence or two to make that clearer then :D
That conversation came to me during Maths- the only practical use of that horrible lesson :P I wanted McGonagall to be a bit more open, she's such a private person and I figured that she would be more susceptible to questions whilst grieving. If it were at any other time I doubt she would have answered. Yeah, teachers and students are always awkward around each other, no matter how well they get on with each other. Also again, men and crying girls :P James isn't used to women who aren't strong (he is mainly around Gryffindors after all) so he's inept at dealing with them during weak spots.
I completely agree, Dumbledore is an absolute nightmare to write, in my opinion, he's the hardest, JK crafts him in such a way that's hard to replicate. I haven't read HP in a while- I've forgotten how evasive he can be :P Thanks for reminding me ;)
Thanks so much for the review! Report Review
I love this fic so much!I love it how James was actually affected by the murder (and seeing the body) and how the Marauders are working together to solve this and kasjdlkajjd Looking forward to the next chapter! :)Author's Response: Ha ha, thanks so much for your kind review Ren! The next chapter's already up if you'd care to check it out ;) MARAUDER TEAM WORK! It really is the best :D Report Review
I hurried my last chapter as well to make the most of the short queue too ;) I really liked the Hansel and Gretel reference at the start, it really adds to the mysterious and quite sinister tone of this. I've never read a murder mystery fan fiction before but I'm glad this is my first!
You make James really sweet and sensitive here which makes a change from the normal stereotype, which I've gone for haha! Please update soon as I want to know what happens next xxAuthor's Response: Ha ha, I really hurried it, I gathered all the papers that I'd been writing on over the week during lessons and typed ultra fast :P That Hansel and Gretel reference just popped into my head when I was writing and I thought, hmn, this sounds good! I haven't read one either, so if you find another one, you can drop me a note, I love reading thrillers and mysteries- and watching them too ;) Yeah, I wanted my James to be mature, yet still growing up- don't worry, I'm sure he'll be a jerk sometime soon :P I've almost finished Chapter Four, hopefully it'll be in the queue today or tomorrow :D Report Review
I'm going to write a review on the next chapter as well but I just have to say how well written this is. You have amazing vocabulary and even after the first chapter the whole atmosphere of the story is already completely developed. I can just tell that I'm going to be addicted to this!Author's Response: Hello! Thanks so much for the review ;) I'm glad you think it's well written, because I'm still relatively new to this writing game as opposed to others who've been writing for years. I really wanted to capture a dark mood yet still encapsulate the feeling of Hogwarts. Yay for addiction!
Aisha Report Review
This story is based on cluedo? Ah that made me way too excited, as that game is an absolute favourite of my, and I think itís really interesting that you decided to base your story on it, because who doesnít love a murder mystery? It will also add a more light hearted element, to the usually deep and dark genre, and that will be a really nice change.
I also love the quote you chose to begin with, as itís so true, and fits perfectly with the idea of the story. I can tell that this story is off to a great start already, as Iím writing this, and Iíve barely got past the first line ;D
I quite liked how you described the death from a medical perspective, as Iíve never seen that done before, and it sort of loses the emotional attachment to the murder, which is again linked into cluedo, as you donít tend to feel sorry for the victim. It was just such a different way to describe it, but it worked really well.
You caught the atmosphere of Hogwarts after the murder very well, and you could sense the excitement due to the fact that such a crime had been committed, then the nervousness and almost worry as to who it was, and it created a really interesting dynamic. I also loved the cameo from Moaning Myrtle.
I liked how James appeared to be rather different in this story, compared to how heís usually portrayed. The fact that he wasnít afraid to show his emotions through vomiting, was a nice twist, as it meant that even James Potter can be affected by murder, and cause him to do things he wouldnít normally do. The way he referred to the hand book was nice as well, as it showed how seriously he took his job, which was surprising, but really nice as well.
I really liked the dark atmosphere that your starting to develop at Hogwarts, as it reflects what was going on outside of the walls as well, and it shows to the reader that no one can be safe, even if theyíre under Dumbledoreís care.
I think this was a really great start to the story, and thank you for the swap!
-Kiana :DAuthor's Response: Can I just admit? I've played Cluedo once in my life :P This story was very much inspired by the Halloween game at TDA where we had to be detectives and solve the murder and I thought, hey, plot line! I wanted it to be dark, but still have light, humorous pieces in it, because people are killed all the time and the world continues. That sounded really cold...
I want this story to be as accurate as I can with all the scientific analysis stuff and the medical reports, it's going to be a major theme throughout, the facts, the hardcore evidence, versus witness acounts.
Moaning Myrtle! She's one of my favourite characters, I had to pay homage to her ;)
James is often portrayed as this tough kid and nothing can beat him down, whereas, he's 17. I know that if I was in his position in two years time that I would be all crazy.
No one is safe. I just read that in an overvoice voice, y'know the cheesy Hollywood ones? Oh jheeze, I worry myself sometimes :P
Thanks so much for the review! I'm getting onto yours now :D Report Review
Ohh what an awesome start! I'm a sucker for murder mysteries!
I like the way that you've written the style to reflect it all. Sort of like film noir. This as all surrounded around the death, around James finding Peach, and without adding a single ounce of dialogue in this you've made it feel incredibly personal.
I also like the small insertion of James vomiting. Even through the sort of hazy start you've given us, it's a good reminder that death has yet to tough any/all of them.
Then the dry sense of humor you included, the bit about a murder not being covered in the Head Boy handbook before you went on to inform us that the handbook did in fact exist, just perfectly complimented your style.
I also loved the line about rumors spreading like a game of Chinese Whispers. Not sure why, but it stuck out at me as pretty incredible.
I feel like we're playing a game of clue right now, and it's time to line all the suspects and the weapon up.
Really great start, and I hope you continue!Author's Response: Thanks so much for the review Jami, you're awesome :D Oh there are going to be so many clues, whether they're helpful or not... *waggles eyebrows* is a different story ;) Report Review
Hey, it's Lia from TGS here for the Review Exchange!
I'm a big fan of murder mysteries, not going to lie, so naturally I was very excited when I read your story.
I like your opening line. For me it sets the tone for what I should expect from your narrator, and what kind of story he or she will tell. It sounds very retrospective in that I could see this as something being recounted to a group of friends sitting around a table, years in the future. Or this could be a sort of film noir sort of thing.
What I liked to see, again, was that the description wasn't overly description. You know some people could go to town on their main character discovering the body. Again, this deals with tone and I think you've matched them up really well.
James's reaction was well done too, I think. Gone is the confident swagger we're used to seeing. Now, you've shown us a scared and confused teenage boy who has probably never seen a dead body in his life, or one exposed to such violence. What I loved most was the comparison of the late Professor to his elderly father which puts things much closer to home.
At the end, you've set us up for something ominous later on and I can't wait to read it. I'm already speculating on how the Professor died...or rather, how many times someone tried to kill him.
Good job!Author's Response: Thanks so much for the review Lia! I think now, the massive problem that I have to face is continuing the mystery, keeping up the suspense whilst adding little clues in as to what's happening... Report Review
I just love a good murder mystery (in stories that is)! And the set up you have here is just perfect. You have your victim, you have your cause of death, a little dark humor (the corpse deciding on its death, brilliant) and James Potter. That is amazing.
You have flawless writting, grammar and spelling, your descriptions are lovely and I can't wait to read more!
Adding this to my favorites and eagerly awaiting an update! Good job!
RalAuthor's Response: Thanks Ral so much for the review! This has got to be one of my favourite stories to work on since it's so completely different from anything I've tried before :D
I love dark humor. My sadistic side will prevail when it comes to this story :P Report Review
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