Oh my god. Okay, I'm going to have to take a moment or two before actually writing anything more...
Okay, I'm alright. I'm alright. But, seriously, wow, that was so, so sad. Almost beyond that, kinda, more of a heavy melancholy, perhaps... there was so much emotion throughout it all, but it was sort of quiet and understated, which suits them and Molly in particular so well as characters, that it was probably far, far worse than if it had been big and flashy.
Molly and Arthur were perfect, but you probably know that already ;) I love the way you wrote Molly - always needing to be busy, always enjoying a full house, never really comfortable with the quiet since having Bill and the rest of the brood. To me, it seems such a natural thing to have happened to her, you know, given her situation and particularly after Fred.
Speaking of whom, I loved the references to him - and the little interjections of 'one tragedy at a time', almost as though she's talking to herself, like it's something she has had to remind herself of quite often in the times before this is set. The jumper over the bed, the way you automatically moves over to it, but then can't use it, and so uses George's instead. It was so touching and poignant.
I liked how you started it with the Healer talking to her, the memory of the time in the Hospital and the references to how it smelled - because that's always something people remember about Hospitals, along with the colour of the walls - like detergent and cleaning products. I loved the way you segued into the main chunk, as well, almost as though these are her thoughts drifting off. It was really clever - I liked it a lot :)
Arthur's condition is so true to life, so I love you for including it and not shying away from it because of course it has to be handled in a respectful and dignified way which doesn't mock amnesia, but it is unfortunately something which happens. The fact that it was Arthur was so upsetting, because he's had such a wonderful life and has such a big, happy family and ideally he'd be spending his last few days or so with them, playing with the kids, reminiscing with Molly and Ron and the rest of them, so the fact that he can't really made it so much worse.
Gah, I can't really think of much else other than to say that this is perfect, you are phenomenal and I now need to desperately listen to French pop to cheer me up.
Aph xxAuthor's Response: Hey Aph! Thanks again for the swap!
It's so good to hear that you liked Molly! I wanted to illustrate that understated sadness through her busyness. It's like a current that's always running quietly in the background, and no matter what she does, it follows her around. Molly tries to go about her daily routine, just to give herself a sense of structure, but it's inevitable that she'll be interrupted when she realizes that her pile of laundry has been reduced considerably and later when chores related to Arthur's palliative care have to be added to the daily list. I do think she would talk to herself sometimes to provide comfort when she's alone.
I'm glad you liked the beginning. I wanted it to feel very detached and strictly from Molly's sort of confused, disbelieving point of view. The smell of hospitals used to really turn my stomach when I had to go see relatives there as a child, and that sensation has stuck with me, so I felt I could use it effectively here.
I had a grandfather with dementia and I distinctly remember listening to him get lost; he would confuse the past with the present and, most painfully of all, forget the names of the family members sitting around him. I felt like Arthur, with his wealth of memories, would lose so much in his deteriorating condition. At least he got to go home, and I would hope the children would be able to be there when it is finally time for him to pass on.
Thanks so much for your lovely review :)
-Amanda Report Review
Hey there academica!
Well, I randomly decided to pop in your author's page and I am so glad I did, or else I wouldn't have stumbled across this amazing story.
Wow. That is all I have to say. This story was just so sad and heartbreaking that I am almost in tears now. The way you showed Molly and Arthur's situation really broke my heart.
Your writing style was just beautiful though and the emotions came through it effortlessly. I could actually see this happening many many years later in canon too, how much ever it breaks my heart to imagine the sweet couple in such a situation.
The "one tragedy at a time" part really got to me though. It made me realize just how much loss Molly - and Arthur - have seen and how much pain they've faced.
The part where Molly tries to tidy up Fred's bed then gives up made me almost break down in sobs. And then, towards the end, the part about the empty space suffocating her and the silence hurting her, was written so vividly and painfully, ghosh. The ending was the best though. It really killed me to know that Arthur is dying, yet you ended this on a bittersweet note.
This one-shot was really a masterpiece of writing. It had so many emotions packed in it, and was so believable, and just so heart wrenching yet beautiful at the same time, I just don't know how to express all my feels right now! So, I'll just wrap up by saying that you have portrayed Molly very aptly, and her situation and thought process in a very touching manner.
Your writing flowed very smoothly and it really struck a chord. It was sad in the biggest and truest sense so I hope you win the challenge.
Oh and before I finish, I must say, I absolutely loved your title and the plot concept! I googled the meaning of the title before reading (though I realized that I didn't need to once I read your author's note at the end) and it instantly made me click on the story. So, the concept of Molly's heart beating almost "irregularly" and the subtle ways in which it was shown throughout, along with the 'justifications', was just amazing. Then the ending just tied everything into place, and it all turned out brilliantly.
Another great job! I am always in awe of your works. Keep writing such amazing heart-touching beauties.
All my love,
(AditiDraco95)Author's Response: Hi Angie! Thanks for stopping by once again :)
You're right, the Weasleys have really gone through more than their share of tragedy. First, Molly lost her brothers, then Fred, and it must be really sad for her to imagine losing Arthur after his close call with Nagini. I'm glad you liked the ending, though. I couldn't bring myself to end with total sadness. I think the kind of one-shots I like best are those that have a sad, angsty theme but a good ending, one that suggests hope for the future. I didn't think Molly and Arthur deserved to go out without a chance, not after everything else their family spirit has brought them through.
It's great that you felt like the emotion was tangible; I was hoping the combination of using beloved characters and choosing an event that happens all that often to people in real life would bring that out for the readers. Unfortunately, the challenge wound up getting deleted, but it's nice to think that this one might have had a shot, so thanks for that :)
It's great that you liked the title! I struggled for a while to come up with a decent one, and I just couldn't get this out of my head, just based on the beauty of the word and what it means. I'm really happy that it seems fitting.
Thanks again for another fantastic review!
-Amanda Report Review
Your description. You knew it was coming, but I will say it again and again, it's beautiful.
Her hand fell automatically to his face, smoothing his thinning hair, most of it turned white at this point or gone altogether. The moment her skin touched his, she regretted her move, for he was cold, unnaturally so, freezing as if she were touching a Dementor. The familiar warmth of her husband, lighting up all her years, had evaporated.
You got into Molly's head so well, with the way she's always liked children which inevitably leads our thoughts back to JK's description of Weasley family scenes.
Fred &hearts I don't think developing my statement is required.
Okay. I've developed a serious love for Louis, so I'm very happy to see him pop up here, even briefly. Yes, why would Molly need a house elf? It was really intriguing to see that come up: wouldn't Hermione have said anything about it?
Heh, spoke too fast. There she is, of course she'd be irritated.
More slightly fluffy tidbits of Next Gen, annnd you take it away. ALL OF THE FEELS FOR MOLLY AND ARTHUR, WHY?
Ah. I thought it would be something along the lines of Alzheimer. Again, another kick in the feels. I found this particularly difficult to read already, even more so now, with the mention of the disease.
I know this was the point, but THIS WAS SO SAD. I feel like a have a stone in the pit of my stomach. This was, as often with you, brilliantly written, too brilliant: I think I'll go steal a fluffy kitten to recover.
&heartsAuthor's Response: Val! -hugs- Thanks for the swap!
I'm glad the characterization worked well. Molly was intimidating to tackle, but I felt secure in falling back on her love for Arthur and her family. She would want to soak up every moment of love and laughter in that house, and I think it would all help keep her together in her time of need. The one bit of grief that will never go away, of course, is Fred.
It's great that you felt like I resolved the house elf thing okay. It was bittersweet, but I thought it--like the anecdotes of the girls' pregnancies and the dancing--added a necessary bit of levity and fluff to this piece.
Yes, snuggle that kitten. This was meant to be heart-wrenching, so please know that I have the best of intentions when I say that I'm glad it made you sufficiently sad. Thanks for the lovely review, once again!
-Amanda Report Review
Why did I read this? *sobs* I would be annoyed at reading something so sad, but I canít be, because it was also so excellent.
Your characterization of Molly is wonderful. Sheís exhausted, but always has a little energy left. Sheís frightened, but isnít going to show it. She loves her family more than anything, and itís so cruel that sheís had to lose them over and over. Kids growing up, husbands growing old, a twenty year old son dying. And I love her eye for the little details or for the silly - the way she wonders about Mrs Skowerís bleach, and Pygmy Puffs, and recalls her love of children seems very realistic to me, not just in terms of the way you cling onto the details when something huge is happening, but also in her own maternal, absent-minded endearing sort of Mollyness.
Has anything Iíve said so far made any sense?! Iím sorry, I just love this story. Even if I donít love whatís happening, haha!
The imagery was very real to me, and very gentle and beautiful. The moment where Molly lays her hand on Arthur at the beginning was lovely and so sad. You really captured the strangeness of a silent, empty Burrow, too.
The canon details are great, and exactly the sort of thing I love. It really makes me believe that this is our Molly, and our Arthur. And just the few lines you give us about the other characters feel really perfect too, like Hermioneís stress about early pregnancy and Ginny becoming the knowledgeable one (actually, it made me think of my own WIP set at the same time as that memory).
Thereís so much death and loss in here that it could be overwhelming, but youíve tempered it with new life (pregnant women everywhere!), a lifetime of memories that Mollyís taking care of for Arthur, and the promise of thinking about something tomorrow if you canít deal with it today. And the love that she has for that man, and his sweetness, seem to be enduring. And now Iím sad again.
To round up, this fic is tender, sad, beautifully written and wonderfully characterized. Well done :)
Athene xoAuthor's Response: Hey Athene! Thanks for coming by :)
Ahh, I love Molly. I love her mix of no-nonsense practicality and deep, enduring love for her family. I blame her mothering, in part, for keeping the Order together despite all that they went through. It was very important to me to get her right, and I was a little surprised by how difficult that was, by how complex she really is. She's a masterpiece in canon and I can only hope to approximate that in my own rendition.
It's so great that the imagery worked and you really noticed the warmth and humor missing from a typical afternoon at the Burrow. I couldn't eradicate it totally--that would be heartless--so I tried to hint at it again in the end with the smile exchanged between husband and wife. But yes, this is not the happy family household we know so well.
Along the same lines, yes--pregnant women everywhere! Even after Arthur passes away, even when it is Molly's turn to be buried, the Weasley family is eternal. It's fortunate that there are so many children to carry on the legacy of love and happiness and keep the sunlight shining into the windows of that house.
Thanks so much for your wonderful review :)
-Amanda Report Review
You have reduced me to tears.
That was . . . that was so sad but it was so sweet. You could really feel the love that Molly felt for Arthur and how much she would miss him when he left.
I felt so bad for Arthur and I just want to give Molly a hug. Oh my goodness, this was brilliant and I absolutely loved it. There's so much sadness in Molly's life, at least when Arthur leaves the rest of the family will be there to comfort her!
Again, brilliantly done!Author's Response: Hi again :)
Well, I want to say that I'm sorry I made you cry, but at the same time, I really wanted the emotion to come through here, so... I'm sorry and thank you? Haha.
It's great that you could sense the connection between Molly and Arthur and really felt for the characters during this very difficult time. You're right, though, fortunately there will be lots of people to care for Molly as she ages.
Thanks again for your very kind review!
-Amanda Report Review
Hey! Its Mya for your review! I am so sorry for the delay dear!!
Anyway here I go!!
This was beautifully written love! I really enjoyed the amounts of emotions you showed! Like holy cow! It was amazing!! Great job!
One thing I noticed, you said Ginny was having her 2nd son but then you went on to say that Molly wondered if she would see Rose, Lily and Victorie talking on the table. Well if Lily isn't born yet that wouldn't work lol. So maybe you could look at that again?
Besides that this was great! =) Amazing work!
You know where to find me if you want more reviews :DAuthor's Response: Hi there! No trouble, and thanks for coming by.
I'm happy the emotion came through okay for you, and that you enjoyed the story overall. That's great to hear :)
I think you may have misunderstood the comment about the girls sitting at the kitchen table. The scene with the pregnant women was a memory; it wasn't really related to the next couple of lines. I merely meant that Molly was thinking about how the girls would gossip years from now at that table, like so many had done before them. I suppose I could see how that might have been unclear, though, so maybe I'll go back and take a look at it later. Thanks for the critique.
I really appreciate this kind review!
-Amanda Report Review
Hullo! I know I promised to review "Yello" but this caught my attention almost as soon as my eyes fell on it and since I am such a die hard fan of sad, angsty stories I couldn't pass the opportunity of reading this :)
This was a truly sad story. Not the incredibly heart wrenching kind of sad but the more settled, composed and yet deeply scarred kind of sad. I think this is due to the character you chose to portray as living these events because we all know that Molly is a very strong, stout woman.
I loved the mix feelings this story transmitted. On one side you have the heart breaking upcoming death of her husband and her painful recollections of Fred when she tries and fails to prepare his bed for Arthur, and on the other side you have hope. Her other memories, the happier ones of the pregnant girls, her joyous pas moments with Arthur and how they waltzed in the living room laughing, enjoying each others presence and love helped shed the light of hope on the dark events that she was currently living. I can't even begin to imagine what someone must feel to have a loved one forget who you are, what his or her life has been like...that they have a loving family who hurt every time they have to bear his/her question of "Who are you?". I never had anyone close live this dreadful experience but I know of someone who did and it's just terrible.
Molly's characterization was very spot on in my opinion. You can feel how strained she is, how very tired and exhausted her body and mind feels and yet, despite all of this, you can still see her struggling, grabbing hold of the bull as one would say and wrestling it. She has lived through too much even during the time the books unfolded (her brother murdered as well as her son, the constant danger they were in) and you can see that that took it's toll on her. Every time she pushed her dark thoughts to the back of her mind she reminded me of Scarlett O'Hara from "Gone with the Wind" because she too used to say something along the lines of "I'll think about this tomorrow", which in itself is a very useful defense mechanism.
All in all, a very sad (in the good way) piece. As always, I love your stories :)Author's Response: Hey, no worries! Thanks for reviewing :)
I really wanted to put Molly's strength to the test in this story, in terms of her having to deal with the coming end of her life and the loss of the memories she holds so dear. I thought it would be incredibly difficult for her to witness this happening to Arthur, not only because she loves him so much but also because it's almost like foreshadowing for her. I couldn't give her a tragic end, though, because Molly just seems so resilient. Instead, I focused on her pulling together and continuing to press on for Arthur's sake.
The thing that bothers me most about death, on a deeply personal level, is having to lose everything I've gained from life and not being able to spend one more moment enjoying it. Molly's sense of panic stems from my own, which is why I don't think about it very often! Of course, on top of that, as you mentioned, she has to deal with Arthur barely remembering her and their children and grandchildren. Maybe she needs to hold tight to those memories for both herself and him. It's great that you found her to be in character. I'd wanted to write her and Arthur for some time, but they're so iconic and important that I wanted them to be perfect.
Thanks again for this truly lovely review :)
-Amanda Report Review
Hello there! teh tarik from the forums here with your requested review :)
So I'm quite at a loss at what to say. This is such a beautifully written but tragic piece, all the more heartbreaking because Molly's characterisation is pretty much spot-on. You've given us a perfect little snapshot of an elderly couple nearing the ends of their lives, fraught with all the troubles and heartache of old age. It's so terribly sad, knowing that these two have done so much across the years, raised so many children and grandchildren, fought in wars, even outlived their son...only to come to such a dreary end. Especially for Molly to witness Arthur losing a whole life time of memories and forgetting his loved ones...
As I mentioned earlier, you depict Molly's character wonderfully; from the first sentence I've already got a good sense of her as a character, from the things she notices e.g. Mrs. Skower's, which I assume is some sort of cleaning product. Despite all her sadness, she's sensible and pragmatic all the way through the story and her voice is so clear, especially with her thoughts: Now, one tragedy at a time, dear. Even when she's faced with such an overwhelming concept like mortality, she responds with the same characteristic level-headed manner, though with a lot less optimism. I think it's such an interesting idea, actually, to put such strong characters into situations beyond their control and show how they deal with things. It really really accentuates the frailty of the human condition. I like the way you shift between Molly doing household chores - cleaning the dishes, stripping the bedsheets etc. - and being lost in thought, thinking of happier times. It is so Molly, and it really highlights a certain age and fragility to her; she's no longer young and energetic, and that even simple chores are a lot more difficult. I love the part with the house elf, and how Molly sort of finds him annoying - I think she might also be slightly resentful of the fact that she actually needs help, and that she relies a lot more on Dumpy than she'll admit :)
As for the mood and emotions of the story, these change throughout the narrative, from the despair of the hospital scene, to the nostalgia for younger days and children to the dreariness of the now-empty house. The memories of the three pregnant women sharing secrets, and of Arthur and Molly dancing to Celestina Warbeck - these are such beautiful scenes, made even more effective by their brevity and simplicity in description. You've really managed to contrast the beauty and energy and joy of life and youth with the sorrow, heartache, and the gradual sense of loss of old age and imminent death. For some reason, I was really startled at the scene where Molly has fallen asleep at the kitchen table. It really tugged at my heartstrings, her slow loss of vigour. And I love love love the ending lines
The work is not yet finished, she realized, her heartbeat interrupted momentarily.
As they approached, she opened the door, prepared now to help him up the stairs.
You ended the story on a bittersweet note, and again your characterisation is outstanding, with Molly referring to her task of caring for an increasingly senile Arthur as "work". Yet there is so much affection between the two, and I'm pretty sure when he's smiling at her from the car that he was having a moment of lucidity, remembering everything about Molly and himself - maybe because of the experience of riding in a Muggle car. Also, I think you reinforced the title very well there, with the way her heartbeat is interrupted momentarily. It's a lovely moment, it's very very subtle, and your writing is so delicate at this point. really admire the beauty of the ending :) I'm going to be positive and interpret it as a moment of hope for both of them!
I would suggest that you look at some of the sentences, especially in the first part of the story. The very first sentence in particular is rather awkward; I would suggest perhaps breaking it up? It is the opening sentence after all, and you would have a smoother and stronger start to the story if the sentence structure were a little clearer :)
Well, I think that's about all for this review :) I know I've been a bit repetitive in some parts; hopefully that doesn't bother you too much :D I've enjoyed your story a lot. It's a wonderful and sensitive piece of writing :) Thanks for requesting!
-tehAuthor's Response: Hi there! Thank you so much for stopping by!
I've wanted to try my hand at Arthur/Molly for a long time, and while this isn't the approach I predicted I would take, I like the way it turned out. They're so important to Harry and the series as a whole, and it was intimidating to try to tackle them as a couple nearing the end of their lives. At the same time, I felt that I had a lot to work with, because the Burrow is chock full of memories--both good and bad. That's precisely why I think the idea of either Molly or Arthur losing those memories is so tragic.
I figured that Molly would find housework therapeutic in a weird way, because it's so routine for her. I tried to allude to that in this story because she uses the housework as a way of jogging her memory. Of course, this theme also comes back to haunt her a little, with the hospital reminding her of the smell of cleaning products and making her feel ill. I can imagine that it would be so hard for her to accept the idea of having a house elf--I wonder how long she ignored it or tried to put it outside before she finally started giving it things to do.
I wanted Molly's memories to just float through this piece as opposed to being separate scenes. Like with the housework, looking into different rooms reminds her of the activity that has taken place there at various points in her life. Time isn't necessarily chronological to her anymore in her old age. In her mind, her younger self dancing with her husband and her children and grandchildren can all co-exist together. I think her ideal version of the Burrow would have all of that contained within its walls.
I definitely meant for the end there to have a tone of hope, as you said. Molly views caring for her ailing husband as another chore, but one that she delights in, making it not quite unlike all the others. Working helps her cope. That smile between husband and wife is my way of suggesting that all is not lost here.
Yep, it's been suggested to me before that some of the sentences need work, particularly the opening line. I had trouble figuring out how to phrase it initially, and I'll go back and edit it once I figure out how it should sound. Thanks for the critique; I appreciate it :)
Thank you so much for your awesome review!
-Amanda Report Review
My eyes are brimming with tears! This is so heartbreaking but so beautiful at the same time.
First of all, the scene in the hospital made my heart stop because I honestly thought Arthur was dead. I was ready to close the tab, just read DIC instead and come back to this later. I was not prepared at the sight of Arthur Weasley dead, not at all. But I decided I might as well read it because I'm just going to be a puddle of tears in the end anyway, no matter when I read it.
I thought you did an amazing job describing the emptiness of the house and the chaos that once was there. The flashbacks of the two of them dancing and Arthur singing along (badly) to a song, when the all Ginny, Hermione and Fleur where pregnant and just all of it was a really nice touch to the story.
Also, I would never have thought that Molly would let a house elf assist her, but it makes sense now that you think about it. I mean, she's going to need some help taking care of Arthur, right? She can't just do it all herself. The mention of Hermione and how she would be annoyed by the fact that Molly got a house elf got a giggle out of me.
"Now, one tragedy at a time, dear." Uhm, a box of tissues now would be nice. When she came to Fred's bed and she couldn't take the bedsheets off...that was just so heartbreaking.
This was a really beautiful, heartbreaking and lovely one-shot! I love how Arthur comes back in a car! That's somewhat fitting for someone like him. You characterisation of Molly was so well done and just everything about this is amazing. You're one amazing author, you seriously are! ♥
86th review out of 100Author's Response: Hi Izzy :)
Aww, I didn't mean to upset you that much! I'm sorry! (At least the emotion works, I suppose.) I didn't want Arthur to actually die or be dead in the story because that would just be too tragic. Instead, I wanted the focus of the story to be Molly's strength even in the midst of her sadness, and I wanted to give her some kind of hope there at the end.
I'm glad everything seemed authentic and you liked the way I described the house. I hope you could see lots of Weasley color there :)
Poor Molly tries so hard in this piece. She really resents having a house elf around, but she knows inside that she needs the help. She tries to manage her sadness by insisting on "one tragedy at a time," but it's almost too much to bear, and she feels overwhelmed.
Thanks so much for this wonderful review!
-Amanda Report Review
Hello, Laurenzo7321 here with your requested review!
Oh, wow! This is a real tear jerker isn't it! Gosh, my heart went out to Molly so much!
I really liked your characterisation of her. I can't even begin to imagine how horrible an empty house would be for her, the mother of 7 children and let's face it, two adopted children and grandmother of 12 (I think that's right?) grandchildren. You really conveyed her sense of loneliness and sadness so well throughout. The line where she touches Arthur though and it isn't her warm husband really got to me.
The bit about Fred's bedroom, I had to have a moment. Fred's death was pretty much the worst one for me and any mention of it is really hard. I liked what you did here though, I think it's a definite possibility that the room went untouched, leaving it exactly as Fred did.
I liked the addition of Dumpy. He was cute but I can imagine Molly struggling with not being the one doing things. I liked the line where she was thinking she would do it better and also the one about Hermione. You kept true to canon throughout. The bit about Fleur and Bill - her not wanting any more kids and him not arguing with her while she was pregnant was the perfect little bit of humour in the story.
I loved that Arthur came home to Molly in a car. Like you said, it was fitting for him. Again it was just that touch of humour in such a sad story that reminds you there usually is a small silver lining if you can just find it.
Thanks for requesting such a lovely one-shot to read! It's an amazing piece of work and I loved it.
LaurenAuthor's Response: Hello, and thanks for coming by!
I'm really glad you liked Molly's characterization. I did want to convey that Molly's whole world is her family and that she feels a certain sense of emptiness when her house isn't full and her table isn't set. That's why I imagined it would be so hard for her to face Arthur's death, because he would be the last person to leave before her house would be entirely her own, and all would be quiet.
Yeah, Fred's death tore me up a little too. I feel like it's the sort of thing Molly would never fully heal from. I imagine that it would be so, so difficult for her to enter his room.
I'm happy that things seemed to fit well with canon and that you liked the little dashes of humor I put in here and there, like the dynamic between Bill and Fleur and Hermione's opinion about the house elf. I also couldn't resist alluding to Arthur's Muggle obsession in a small way with the car.
Thank you so much for this lovely review :)
-Amanda Report Review
Hello again! Thanks for re-requesting:)
Oh my goodness, what a beautiful story this was! You honestly wrote every single part of it so perfectly-Molly's emotions felt so raw and so real and her characterization was so perfect. You have a lovely style of writing which instantly hooks me in, and I think I'm going to have to go and read some more of your stuff now!
I thought you began this one-shot very well, because I instantly found myself in the scene that you had described and feeling all that Molly felt. The first sentence: 'The room smelled like Mrs. Skowerís, only it was overpoweringly repulsive, able to cover up the thick hospital odor only to linger as a ceaseless reminder that it had been needed' was especially well written because whenever I think of hospitals or illness, I always think of that horribly chemically, much too clean smell and your writing brought back a whole lot of memories. The line 'The familiar warmth of her husband, lighting up all her years, had evaporated' was also perfect because not only did it take me back to the books and remind me of how kind and friendly Arthur always was, but it gave me a sense of both the time this one-shot is set in and of loss, which I think is an important factor in this story.
I really liked the little details you added in, that made everything more believable and also made Molly's character more realistic and real. I liked that you talked about Molly's grandchildren-such as Louis gifting her the house elf and the thought of Rose and Lily and Victoire in the house, sharing secrets, as it really gave me overpowering feelings sadness, reflection and moving forward. I also thought the sentence 'Molly had asked Bill about it, who reported that he was finally getting a son and saw no reason to quarrel with his part-Veela wife, especially in the middle of pregnancy' was very fitting, and a nice touch to a very emotional story.
Overall, I honestly think you ticked all the right boxes with this piece, and I hope you do well in the challenge! The ending was absolutely perfect and the mention of Arthur being transported via Muggle means to his deathbed was sweet, while being extremely sad. Thank you so much for giving me the chance to read this.
Courtney:)Author's Response: Hi Courtney, I'm happy to see you again :)
I'm so glad you liked the writing style and the emotion. Obviously, for the sake of the challenge, it's very important that the emotion comes through and feels tangible to the reader. I do hope you check out more of my work; I'd love to hear more of your thoughts!
From the few times I have visited hospitals, I remember that the too-clean smell always sticks with me. It always feels like its own reminder that there was death and pain there. It's great that the imagery works for you and that you felt the connection between poor Molly and her husband.
I think the Weasleys have such a rich legacy; what the Malfoys have in money, the Weasleys have in memories. There are happy ones, like the pregnant girls and the grandchildren and the funny highlights of Quidditch games, and then there are sad ones, like the endless echo of Fred's death. I really wanted those memories and feelings to shine here, even more so than Molly herself.
I couldn't help it with the Muggle car. I thought Arthur would love it, had he been lucid. At least Molly saw the irony in it, right?
Thanks so much for this wonderful review :)
-Amanda Report Review
Hey it's patronus_charm here with your review, I don't know why. but like last time it somehow logs me out when I go to your stories:/ so yeah that's why it doesn't link back to my page. On with the review!
I loved this story it was just amazing, and so emotional, it made me tear up at moments, which is definitely good, considering what challenge it's for. I think the quote which you chose for the summary perfectly summarises what the story was about.
The flashback at the beginning truly showed how deep Molly and Arthur's relationship went, and though they are often portrayed as arguing in the books, this showed how much they really cared for one another.
I thought it was great that you set in the next generation era, as I've never really read any, which focuses on Arthur and Molly at this time, so it was nice to get their perspective on how time has passed, and how they've aged so greatly. You stayed really true to their characters as well, which was great as then you could really identify them to the ones we're so familiar with.
I liked the bit when you mentioned Hermione, Ginny and Fleur being pregnant all at the same time. It seemed a bit comedic to me, and added a light touch to an otherwise sorrowful story. It was nice to see how time had passed, by her imagining her grandaughters sitting there. It shows how this story will still be carried, just by different people.
It was really sad to see how, Molly is still so deeply affected by Fred's death, but I guess no one ever expected it to happen, so that's why everyone was so affected by it, especially Molly, as I think a mother's love for her child is the last thing ever to fade.
I'm so glad that you requested for a review, as this story was beautiful and it really did bring tears to my eyes. Best of luck for the challenge, I'm sure you'll do well in it :) Kiana xAuthor's Response: Hi Kiana, thanks for coming by again :)
I'm glad you liked the quote I chose; it came to me pretty suddenly and I just couldn't shake it. I'm also pleased to hear that you liked how I portrayed Molly and Arthur's relationship as being truly loving underneath all the squabbling we see them do in canon.
Molly and Arthur really do seem like timeless characters for me; it's like you always expect them to be there. But I like how you mentioned that the children and grandchildren will carry the Weasley story along even after Arthur and Molly have passed away. I'm sure it would comfort Molly a lot to hear that :)
I figure that Fred's death would have always been so hard for Molly. She always picked on him and George for being idle when they were younger, and I'm sure she has a lot of regrets concerning him, and a lot of pain still inside.
Thanks very much for this fantastic review!
-Amanda Report Review
Its me, Gabbie with your requested review and pardon me while I dry my eyes! D': I have to say that that was the most brilliantly sad thing I've read today! And I'm so weak in the heart myself and I wasn't able to really read it due to my face scrunching up. Its not a pretty sight!
But what is lovely is this! I think that the beginning was enough to give me a bit of worry, seeing as how Molly was at St. Mungo's, where Arthur was, apparently dying. I think her mind shifting away from the thought was very realistic, she didn't want to face what was happening and you wrote it so wonderfully.
The passage of time was really well done in this too, I was able to sense, from just a few paragraphs that it had been a very long time. Molly's memories of her children and the rest of the family just sort of broke my heart, I could, despite it all, sense how lonely she was now that they were all on their own. D':
There was a bittersweet thing though, too, with her thoughts of the pregnant women, with her dancing with Arthur. I particularly loved that little bit and had to take a moment to prepare myself for big and nasty tears. Thankfully for you, I cleaned myself up enough to read the rest and I think that it was just wonderful. It feels strange to say that this is beautiful, when the content makes me want to pluck Arthur from this story and save him. But the fact that there's nothing for Molly to do, when she was so used to doing everything really stuck out to me. So, great job! That ending though, I had to dab at my eyes again. Even though she wanted to break down, she was still there for her husband, even acknowledging that he would be gone soon. I could hear her heart breaking and I thought you just did a great job, but goodness, I'm a major wuss. And yet, I write angst.ironic, yes?
Anyway, I have no CC's for this, other than thank god you requested this for me. It was amazing. :)
GabbieAuthor's Response: Hi Gabbie, I'm happy to see you back again!
This is going to sound mean, but I'm glad tissues were necessary! After all, this story obviously needs to be sad for the challenge :D
I'm happy the beginning worked well for you. I wanted to show a combination of Molly's mind slipping with her own old age and, as you mentioned, her desire not to face what is happening to her beloved husband.
Yeah, I really wanted to save Arthur from his fate, too. I especially wanted to do it not just for him, but because his death is causing Molly to worry over the end of her own life and to really take stock of all the bittersweet memories that are held in the Burrow. I mean, what will happen to them all when she's gone? It would be very scary to consider.
Thanks so much for your wonderful review!
-Amanda Report Review
Wow, this is definitely fitting for the challenge it was written for- it was heartbreaking!
Poor Molly, it's hard to imagine her as old but you've described her perfectly, the characterisation is spot on and I really felt sorry for Molly. Arthur, it's hard to imagine him dying but I suppose everyone has too, he's just one of them characters that seem like they're going to be around forever and it must be so difficult for Molly to have Arthur there just like she has all those years but now he doesn't even recognise her.
I also found it sad that she had a house elf, although she didnít want it, it just seemed like definite proof that she had gotten older and now she needed looking after, instead of her looking after others which is how I'll always picture her.
That little bit about Fred's death and then the line after ďOne tragedy at a time.Ē It really shows how much Molly has been through and she is only human, even if she did kill Bellatrix, I was all for her kids, her family and it was so sad to see it unravelling around her. Ergh, I just want to give her a hug now!
Great job on this, it's really touching and written beautifully.Author's Response: Hello, and thanks for stopping by!
I went into this with the thought that a lot of people seem to assume Molly and Arthur will be around forever, raising children and providing comic relief to the plot. As lovely as it would be if that were true, I decided to focus on the toll all that work would take and what it would be like from Molly's perspective as she nears the end of her life (as seen through the end of Arthur's life).
Yeah, I really wanted to use the elf to show that Molly's gotten old, too, although inside she wants to think that she's as capable as ever. It's sad how she really doesn't want it, and then feels like she actually could use it.
This whole thing made me want to hug Molly. She was just a wonderful wife and mother and such a great character, and I wish there was some way to make her and Arthur last forever.
Thanks so much for your very kind review :)
-Amanda Report Review
If I could send you a virtual sound of a hoard of clapping through HPFF - I would! Because honestly; this is a really, really, truly, utterly, fantastic; beautiful piece.
I love how you were able to portray this fantastic canon couple in such a light, not many people are able to do that. It was sad, it was definitely sad to know that Arthur was dying. The lines "He had not been able to remember her name for several weeks. Generations of children, gone. Spells, lost. But he smiled at her now." broke me. Like literally.
I really am at a loss of words - as I always am.
I found the use of the fantastic imagery helped the 'Molly's mind' effect, the imagery you used was perfect actually. The way you used it to write and flesh it out and make it realistic, that my friend is a strong point in writing! And that helped the audience to understand Molly, the sadness in her life and the pending darkness yet to come. Her characterization was really good, it's hard to make a canon character not OOC - but you've made the cut!
It was very easy to understand and it was really good. Honestly. I also liked one more thing, the repetition of the line 'one tragedy at a time' - it felt so... nice. It matched with the mood and the scene but other than that it felt very captivating. I don't know how to say what I'm thinking exactly but yeah. I feel the repetition reminded me of Molly (and you think I'm so absurd 'cause the fic is about Molly :P ) - it just had this very strong connection to the character and I felt that. I just love that line.
One tragedy at a time.
This is a really fantastic story, your writing is (brace yourself, fangirling is coming) aslkdfnsaldkfansdfklnaskf.
Ehehehehe :P (Accept my apologies but Tom was too attractive for me not to click the story.)
I really hope you get the recognition of epicness for this. This is utterly a brilliant piece. Good luck in the challenge Amanda! :)
(also do pardon if I went into... literature mode. I have my Lit First Term Exam tomorrow so I'm sort of... preparing?)
- Tawi :)Author's Response: Wow, Tawi, thanks so much for coming by :)
It's sad to think about how despite all the miracles made possible by magical medicine and advances in spells, wizards still have to die sometime, just like the rest of us. It's especially sad for Arthur, because in the process he's losing all these skills he's acquired and forgetting his children and grandchildren one by one, and Molly's name.
Molly is really tough, and I wanted to show the contrast between her strong personality and the fact that she too is growing old in this piece. I couldn't be so cruel as to just end with their deaths or something equally hopeless, so I chose to go out on a little bit of a high note with Molly taking up her duties.
Yeah, poor Molly has suffered a lot. I knew I couldn't write this without somehow reflecting on Fred and the continuing pain of his loss.
Thanks so much for this lovely review!
-Amanda Report Review
I'm very tempted to make my review a very long "why?" followed by a million question marks. How else can I respond to this story? It's just so painful! There isn't anything more sad than taking a canon ship and portraying it at its inevitable end - no matter how many times they've fought and risked their lives, it would have to eventually come to this. It's what few authors write of, though, and those who did would rarely take the risk to show it in such a realistic, yet moving way. It's like the beginning of Up, where it's just life, and there's nothing one can do to prevent it from happening. You've done an excellent job in creating a sad story, and what stands out about it is that you achieved "sad" without stepping into "tragic" and outright angst fiction.
I really like your portrayal of Molly here, not only because it's perfectly canon, with her practical thoughts and brave independence, but you show how she doesn't give up, even in the face of adversity. She keeps going without losing heart, although at times it comes close. Molly and Arthur's story isn't yet finished, and she hasn't given up on him - she still has him, painful as it is that he doesn't remember. That's worse than his imminent death. The deathbed scene will be one-sided - his goodbye will be to someone who has cared for him, not to the wife he loved, and that hurts a lot. Molly and Arthur are a rare example of a successful long-term relationship in the series, and I think readers take it for granted that they'll always be around, even far into the next-gen era. That's another reason why your choice of characters for this challenge is perfect.
What stood out most were the little details, like the way that she almost laughs to think that he'll be arriving in a car, and the subtlety with which you refer to Fred. I also liked when her own mind drifts in the hospital while she avoids facing the truth - it's easier to think of the children's ward, of life in its early stages, than of Arthur's life at its end. It's excellent characterization and excellent writing. :D
The one sentence that I think could flow better is the first one. It took me a couple of times to get through it - I think it's still "grammatically correct", but the way that you've arranged the clauses isn't as clear as it could be. It's up to you, though - that's the only thing I can imagine critiquing here. Amazing work, all-round! I wish you the best with the challenge - this one should at least place, if not win!Author's Response: Hello, I'm happy to see you here! :)
Ugh, the beginning of Up just totally gutted me, so for you to draw the comparison makes me think that the emotion came through okay here, hah. I couldn't bring myself to make this unequivocally tragic, like following it through to the deathbed scene. I really wanted to make it like Molly was tough right until the end, pressing on on behalf of her family. I even more wanted to emphasize that she's doing that in spite of her own failing health.
I had a similar thought--a lot of people do seem to assume, especially in next gen fanfiction, that Molly and Arthur will just always be there. Unfortunately, old age takes its toll on wizards and witches too, even if they get a few extra years on us Muggles. I've wanted to write Molly and Arthur for a while, and what I really wanted this to be about is her fear of losing the wealth of memories and love that she's come to hold in the Burrow, as she watches it all slip away from her husband. They are the sort of panicked thoughts I think a lot of people have concerning death--why does it have to end? Must I give all this up?
I'm happy to hear that you liked the details. Molly is really the storehouse for memories here, the true center of the Weasley family. It's great that you felt like all of that fit in well with her characterization, because she was very intimidating to tackle. I wanted to get her right and to make her seem relateable.
That first sentence gave me some trouble, and you're right, it's still not really where it should be. I'll have to go back when I get a second and tweak it a little more. Thanks :)
Thanks so much for your wonderful review!
-Amanda Report Review
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