Reading Reviews for Heading Out to the Highway
17 Reviews Found

Review #1, by dirtydeedsdonedirtcheap Decompression

27th January 2015:
I nearly bowl over three muggles on the pavement outside, but I donít even spare a glance of apology.

^ I too drive this Sirius. Everyday though. Not on purpose.

If that shrill, horse-faced (DELETED FOR 12+ RULE) took the Dark Mark it would be a great day for our side.

Woah Dan, you went there. I kind of like it. I'm actually singing along as I read this and the song fits and puts me in the mood that Sirius is in. I feel his anger and that rush of adrenaline you get when you're driving too fast because the highway is empty or you're that angry at your significant other/friend/mother/whoever and you start driving without a real destination but you're gripping the wheel with such brute force you could potentially floor it and zoom down the interstate...

Itís Moonyís little voice in the back of my mind that convinces me not to do it.

But then that moment of clarity hits you. That little voice in your head that yells 'slow down, stop what you're doing, breathe!'

Oh Dan, that was so much fun to read! I felt like you enjoyed writing it. Sentence after sentence was just pow-pow-pow. The song worked for Sirius and for the scenario you had going on. He fought with his parents. He's worried about his brother but annoyed with him at the same time. He's a Death Eater, he's sure of it, all signs point to it and Sirius did want to protect his brother. He tried. He failed.

Plus, I think Sirius's anger gets the best of him. He's reckless, we know that and you touched upon that as he raced against the driver and thought of Moony telling him it's not worth it to fight his parents. He's reckless but he also has a heart and a functioning brain but at the same time he's still a child, barely grown enough to make right decisions so he flies his bike even though he's not supposed to. It's his chance to finally say a big ol' 'FU' to everything and everyone that's bothering him.

Once it's out of his system he can coast along without worry.

I loved the description of the drag race. It was so exciting and it almost felt like I was behind the wheel/behind the bike. I felt that bad edge and whooped at the computer screen, "Come on, Sirius!"

Clearly I would have been a bad influence on him.

But really this was great to read. Your excitement shined through the story and that made it ten times better. Now I want to go for a drive but with nearly a foot of snow outside that's not possible!

Author's Response: Deeds! Not too many people dive into my one, lonely song fic. I had two thoughts in my head when I wrote it. First, I feel like this song suits Sirius to a T. Priest in general is a good match for him. Second, I decided that I wanted one of every story type on my author's page -- novel, novella, song fic, etc. I'm proud to say that I've realized both goals now. :)

Yes, I went there. It's an interesting possibility, don't you think? Petunia hated magic and pretty much everything to do with Lily's husband and son. What if she was Voldemort's sleeper cell? She knew that she couldn't actually harm Harry without bringing Dumbledore's wrath down on herself, so she just did everything possible to make his life miserable. OK, I'm rambling...

I definitely think that when the other three Marauders had that moment of clarity, it was Moony's voice speaking inside their head. Or from outside their head, standing next to them. One way or the other, it was Moony.

I enjoyed writing this immensely. The song speaks to me on many levels. Now I'm thinking I should write more Priest-based song fics for Sirius. It just flows. Something set to Living After Midnight, starting with him sneaking out of the Hufflepuff girls' dormitory, perhaps. I have ideas...

The drag race was fun to imagine, fun to write... heck, I enjoy going back and reading it. The idea of him mocking some uptight, tweedy muggle banker is just awesome. I'm really glad you enjoyed it.

I don't think I would have been a very good influence on Sirius, either. Just look at how I write him.

I'm assuming you're all dug out by now, so you can go for that drive. If there's one thing I like doing, it's inspiring people. ;)

Thanks so much for the awesome review!

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Review #2, by TidalDragon Decompression

19th April 2014:
Howdy! So, I've set myself the task of R&R-ing as many of the Golden Paw nominees as possible before voting, since truth be told I haven't read near enough of them.

Despite it being a song-fic, which I typically dislike and therefore never read, I really enjoyed this story. The biggest plus for me was how you captured Sirius at his most hot-headed and before age and maturity could temper his reactions and judgment. Even his profanity (which I usually don't like in stories), was effectively done here and I thought the lyrics actually added to the mood and characterization for once (like I said, I'm VERY ehhh on song-fics).

Despite having the red mist descend on Sirius in this tale though, you managed to make him get across his thoughts on the big topics in the Marauders Era and his family, and give insight into his relationships with James, Lupin, Lily, and even James's parents. The word choice in doing so was impeccable - it was both true to how I think of Sirius in his youth and it was laden with emotion.

An excellent story and an enjoyable read!

Author's Response: Hi, there!

I'd never written a song fic before this one, but I thought this song was such a great fit to Sirius Black. It's all about disaffection and rebellion and striking out on your own. It also fits very well with motorbikes.

Pondering the Sirius Black we see in the books, I thought there was just enough of that hot-headed, immature guy left to suggest what he was like before suffering the loss of James and Lily and going to Azkaban. I wanted the profanity to be driven by his mood and not be excessive, so I'm glad that worked alright for you.

I'm really pleased that all of his thoughts came across well and it all sounded believable. I was thinking of riding his bike as the thing he does to get away and think, so it was fun to just let all the thoughts come to him and sort of flow.

Thanks so much for reading and reviewing! It's very admirable, trying to make the time to read all of the great stories that were nominated.

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Review #3, by Unwritten Curse Decompression

11th April 2014:
Howdy, there! I'm here from the Review Chain in the GCR. :)

Let me just say, I love Sirius. I love JKR's version of him and I can totally see that reflected in this one-shot. He's bitter and adventurous with a bit of humor thrown in. The humor was especially needed because this is a rather angsty moment in his life--so those momentary light moments were necessary breaks before we plunged back into his troubled mind. Very well handled.

I also especially enjoyed his thoughts on Regulus. I'm also a huge fan of Reg, because of his ultimate redemption/sacrifice, and I think you've portrayed him so well here. Sirius's concern for his brother who he acknowledges is not the murdering type is palpable.

And the race--perfect Sirius moment. Oh my goodness. I loved his descriptions of the man in the ascot and his sheer lack of fear and how he'd taunt the man. And the stunt at the end, where he pretends to fall off the bridge only to reappear beside the man, and how he wanted a camera to capture the moment... so delightful. This is Sirius to a tee, as is the song you chose to pair with the story.

I just genuinely enjoyed reading this. I look forward to reading more of your work!

-- Gina

Author's Response: Hi, Gina!

I'd never tried to write a song fic before this one and I agree completely, this song fits Sirius perfectly.

I think you have to have all of those elements to write Sirius well. He's a brilliantly funny guy who's gone through some things in his life that have left him pretty embittered. You have to maintain that balance or the character just doesn't work.

I can't imagine Sirius ever completely giving up on his younger brother, and I thought there would definitely be some feelings of guilt or at least missed opportunities.

The race was a blast to write. That was wide-open Sirius Black at his best!

I'm glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for reading and reviewing!

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Review #4, by TheHeirOfSlytherin Decompression

24th March 2014:
*listening to the song before I read*

I'm on my iPad and I don't have the song on here, so I couldn't do both. :P

The song fits awesomely well with Sirius, I could just imagine the song being about a moment like this while I was listening to it. He'd definitely wanna be reckless, acting like he's got nothing to lose after being with his family, especially If he's just found out about his brother's dark mark.

The relationship between Sirius and Regulus, any what ifs they might have had, like with what you put about Sirius having the time to try and do something but didn't because he was having fun with his friends, is - to me - a time when better late than never really doesn't work. Which makes me sad; they're family and they should love each other and Regulus basically just wants to be appreciated, but no one is listening until it's too late and he's roped into things a child shouldn't be in. And I like that Sirius acknowledges it, knows there's blame everywhere, but it's still too late and I'm still sad.

I'm pretty sure I held my breath for a minute and forgot the bike would fly and that Sirius would probably cheat until the worst possible moment and I was so sure he'd do something stupid and crash... right until he didn't and I was, like, phew. :P

This was so cool!


P.S. I remember your blog about song fics and your list and talking about Bad to the Bone and Ron and humor and I wanted to tell you, but forgot - I have one! It's half done and on my computer. Maybe one day I'll finish it. :P

Author's Response: It's a great song, isn't it? Doesn't it just scream "Sirius Black"? Angry Sirius Black. Reckless, carefree Sirius Black. Sirius Black who's just had a blowout row with the rest of his crazy family. Good, it isn't just me.

Sirius didn't seem like the type to not feel *any* responsibility for how Regulus turned out. He's way too Gryffindor. We tend to believe that we can fix anything that's wrong with the world if we just figure out the right thing to do. You're right that there isn't much point in Sirius second-guessing his past decisions, but there also isn't much point in drag-racing guys in Jaguars on twisty back roads. He's a creature of impulse, not really a deep thinker. That was Remus's department.

If you think it scared you a little, imagine being the guy in the Jag! It was very juvenile and more than a little cruel of Sirius, but that's just the type of mood he was in.

I'm really glad you liked it! I would kill to read your take on Ron and George Thorogood. Seriously, PM it to me even if you never post it!

Thanks for reading and reviewing!

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Review #5, by SeverusLove Decompression

23rd March 2014:
Wow, I'm surprised. I loved the way you showed Sirius' love and concern for Regulus. ("All he wanted to do was make his family proud, and that's eventually gonna cost him his life." The feels that line gave me.) This was so in-character for Sirius and few people can manage that; I could imagine it canon. I pictured Reg's situation so similar to Draco's, really.

I think you could have done just as good without the crude language, but that's a personal opinion. The humour though - morbid, sarcastic humour. But it's humour nonetheless and it's my kind of humour. ;)

("Certain nights are made for dancing with the devil." -- this line though...luvvv)

Anyways, thank you for the story; keep writing!
~ Sevvy

Author's Response: Hi, there!

I like to think that Sirius did care for his brother and the fact that Regulus became a Death Eater pained him in ways that he wouldn't readily admit to his friends. He spent the first eleven years of his life trying to be a good son and heir to the Black family before he met James and was sorted into Gryffindor. However disillusioned he became, you can't completely turn that off.

The crude language was just a choice that I made. I agree that it could have been fine either way.

I loved that line as well.

I'm really glad that you enjoyed it. Thanks for reading and reviewing!

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Review #6, by MEW Decompression

2nd March 2014:
okay this is now my favorite story!

Author's Response: I'm glad you enjoyed it. Thanks for reading and reviewing!

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Review #7, by Elenia Decompression

11th January 2014:
Hi! *waves*

Yeah, it really is me, can you believe it? I actually managed to review something! But shh, don't tell my beta, he might think I'm procrastinating since I should be finishing the next chapter d:

But I just couldn't resist. I stumbled on your author's page and I was like: 'Hmm... a song fic? Really, Dan? I'm a bit surp- it's about Sirius? Okay, now I have to read it. Wonder what song he picked - wait, isn't that a Judas Priest song?' then when I realised it actually was a Judas Priest, I think I might have stopped breathing for a moment and I knew there was no way I could stop myself from clicking this story open (x Seriously, how cool are you for doing a Judas Priest song fic!! I'm fangirling a little over here, hope you don't mind d:

I'm a bit surprised though that I haven't seen this earlier. Have you mentioned this to me and I've just forgotten it? It's not that long since I last visited here, is it? Never mind, don't answer that...

Okay, on to the actual review before I use all my remaining characters on pointless babble.

The choice of song first, I think it was fabulous. It fits Sirius and this story perfectly. You couldn't have picked a better one. The lyrics go with every situation you created, only adding to the story and not interrupting the flow like they often do in song fics. I love it how you managed to take the message from the song and turn it into a story.

Your Sirius was absolutely flawless. All that anger and frustration. One of my favourite things here is actually that you manage to make him sound young and reckless! Sometimes people just make him sound too mature and that definitely doesn't suit him. He might have his moments, but to me he is exactly like you've portrayed him here.

Oh and love it that even the voice of reason in his head is Remus's. He certainly has a good influence on our Sirius here ^^

Okay, I have to say, I was confused at the beginning for a little while, since I first imagined this to be set to the time when Sirius ran away from home and I was going to point out why Lily was at James's house, but at some point I realised Sirius must be older and that this was some kind of a visit back to Grimmauld place? I never personally imagined that he would set foot in that place again while his parents were still alive, but I'm willing to change my opinion on that just because this story was so amazing (x because this has to be canon, there's no other option.

dungeon muppets - gotta love your choice of words here (x

I collected a bunch of things I wanted to quote, but then this wouldn't be a 12+ review anymore (x so let me just tell you: Bravo, good sir. This was such an amazing piece of storytelling that had me chuckling throughout the whole story. There is something addictive about your writing that makes me want to read more and more. I think I've said this several times already, but WHY AREN'T YOU WRITING YOUR OWN STORIES?? You have to do it!

Along with your characterization of Sirius, I think you did spectacular work with the whole Black family. Poor Reg, becoming the first Death Eater who was too young to shave. That, and the preceding description of Bella made me laugh so hard, my husband thought there was something seriously wrong with me.

The muggle-baiting part was another thing that was spot on. I could imagine it so easily. The thrill of the race, that tweedy doorknob in the Jag. All thanks to your flawless descriptions. Where do you come up with those? I felt like I was actually there, racing those narrow roads in the countryside on the back of Sirius's motorcycle. Wait, this is starting to sound like a daydream...

Err, let's move on, shall we?

Wonderful work, dear! You once again managed to amaze me with your writing. It's a bit unfair how one person can be so versatile. Share some talent, will you d:

That's it from me now. Sorry if my reviewing skills are completely rusty and I'm just babbling without actually making a point d: As always I don't have any constructive criticism to share, just a lot of fangirling (x

Take care ^^


Author's Response: Hi, Hanna!

I have been so terrible about responding to reviews for the past few days... I should be in some sort of Author detention. Let's get about rectifying that, shall we?

Yes, I wrote a song fic. I guess everybody should try it at least once, and for a long time I've thought this song was a fantastic match for Sirius. Actually, nearly everything on Defenders of the Faith works well with him, but the whole highway theme meshes so perfect with Sirius and his motorcycle!

That's so nice of you to say about Sirius being flawless. I'm sure there's a flaw or two there somewhere, but I'm not really going to encourage you to go looking for them. ;) The bigger relief, actually, was that you thought he was age-appropriate. That was tricky to get right.

I've always imagined Remus as "The Voice of Reason" for the Marauders. Every close-knit group of friends has one. So it seemed sensible that "The Voice of Reason" inside Sirius's head would be the same voice he'd grown used to hearing for seven years of school.

You are correct. This is set after Sirius, James, et. al. are finished with Hogwarts. I sort of imagined Sirius agreeing, very reluctantly, to visit his family. Perhaps to try to talk them out of supporting Voldemort. Or maybe just to try to help his younger brother. No matter the reason, it obviously didn't work out well.

Re: dungeon muppets. While I was writing this, I learned that "muppet" is a British insult that has nothing to do with Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, Fozzie the Bear and the rest of their friends. Who knew, right? But I instantly fell in love with it.

This is a tricky one to write a 12+ review for, but hey, you're one to talk! So many times I want to quote some spectacular bit of Gwen of James's dialog and I can't. Why am I not writing my own stories? Because I'm still waiting for that one, spectacular idea to come to me. That and my near-total lack of free time.

I absolutely loved writing the scene where he's racing the muggle in the Jaguar. That was crazy, impulsive, reckless Sirius at his best. So much fun to let the scene play out! Gah, now I want to write another...

You are so kind and just generally so awesome. And I'm afraid I'll be keeping that talent to myself because it isn't as though you don't have plenty of your own! Don't be greedy, Hanna!

Thanks so much for the amazing review!

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Review #8, by FredWeasleyIsMyKing Decompression

9th January 2014:
Hi Dan!!

So sorry this had taken so long to get around too, Christmas was much busier than I anticipated! Of course I'd love to come and check it out though, I do remember Brit-picking this for you a while ago and enjoying it then.

Also, this is my 200th review yay :) I think you got my 100th too you know... It's kind of cool though :)

Also apologies, it was hard to keep this 12+ at times and so I've had to presume you'll know which bit I'm talking about!

So it's interesting that you've picked to a song fic. I think you've done a really good job with it though... The song suits Sirius down to the ground. I personally don't think you have to worry about Sirius characterisation either as it's one of my favourite things about this fic. It's absolutely spot on. The temper he's got and the recklessness are certainly there. I do like how you have the moments though when he managed to reign himself in a bit. From when this is set this makes sense to me, it's clear the people in his life such as James, Lily and Remus are having a positive effect on him, even if it's only a little one.

Speaking of the people having a positive effect on him, the paragraph about Remus is my absolute favourite but. I can't quote anything due to the language but the whole section where he moans about having Moonys voice in his head is great. The way you've written it reminds me of one of my uni friends so I couldn't help but giggle.

Also your line about Bellatrix being the first death eater the dark lord could... um you know... had me in stitches!

Again, I thought you wrote Sirius's thoughts towards his family very believably. I completely agree with how you wrote his feelings... I can imagine him being very annoyed at his parents for what they did to his brother, but also being annoyed at himself for not helping his brother escape their clutches. As for his parents, I can't imagine him feeling anything but resent for them and that's exactly how we see him in the books later in life. I wouldn't change a thing about it.

The whole section at the end was very clever and again showed some fabulous characterisation of Sirius. It was fast paced and kept me on the edge of my seat but I didn't once want for description. I could picture every twist and turn. As much as Sirius shouldn't have done what he did, the idiot sounds like he deserved it!

Awesome fic Dan, but then I always love your work!

Thanks for requesting.
Lauren :)

Author's Response: Hi, Lauren!

Please don't apologize! The fact that you offer your time and insight to the authors of this community is an awesome thing, no matter when you're able to do it. And I'm honored to get a significant review number from you!

This, um, is probably not the easiest story to write a 12+ review for. Dan grins sheepishly...

I'm not really sure what made me decide to write a song fic. Partly, I guess, just because I hadn't written one before. Also, I agree with you: this song is a beautiful fit for Sirius. I'm really pleased that you thought the characterization was good. I really did my best to think through all of his words and thoughts and actions.

I always think of Remus as "The Voice of Reason" among the Marauders. Every group of friends has one. So I don't think it's much of a stretch to imagine that the voice of Sirius's own better judgment inside his head would be Moony's.

While I highly doubt Voldemort, um, *utilized* Bellatrix in that way, it definitely seems like the kind of insult Sirius would send in her direction. The fact that Voldemort had not chosen to engage her in that manner might actually have made the insult hurt her even more, if you think about it.

I'm quite sure that Sirius hated his parents intensely for lots of reasons. The way that the twisted Regulus's desire for approval and used it to impose their pureblood supremacist ideology on him was probably especially hard for Sirius to forgive.

I had loads of fun writing the whole encounter with the man in the Jaguar. It seemed like an awesome way for Sirius to burn off that frustration and pent-up aggression.

I'm so pleased that you liked it! Thanks so much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #9, by patronus_charm Decompression

25th December 2013:
Iím here to spread some Christmas cheer, so Merry Christmas Dan!

Sirius had me laughing all the way through! This was one of the few times Iíve read his first person narrative but I loved it as it had me cracking up all the way through. He was just brilliant with his I donít care what people think, Iím going to do it my way. I think my favourite moment was when he saw the bike and he just wanted to ride as that captured the craziness perfectly!

Then the silent voices of his friends in his head were very touching as it all showed how much they meant to him and how they wanted the best for him. My favourite reaction was the one about Moony as it was just great!

I liked how you included background information about his family because it contrasted nicely to the general 15+ this life and world Iím running away. I liked the idea of Andromeda being the cause of Regulus becoming a Death Eater because Iíve never really seen that explore before and Siriusí thoughts about his brother were really lovely!

Sorry this review is short, thereís more Christmas to be spread but I really loved this one-shot and Merry Christmas!


Author's Response: Kiana! Thank you so much, dear! And a Merry Christmas to you as well, albeit a day late.

I had a blast writing Sirius in this. Even when he was being serious -- weak pun not intended -- I had a good time picking apart his loyalties and thoughts about his family and his friends. He is very much the sort to be uncompromising about the way he lives his life, yet he's also very sensitive in a way. Such a complex character!

I've always thought of Moony as being a sort of "in loco parentis" figure to the other three marauders. And I'm sure that Sirius made a big show of acting annoyed about it, yet he secretly liked it. The boy needed some legitimate parental figures in his life.

I had almost as much fun dissecting the highly dysfunctional Black family as I did writing Sirius. They're just too easy to make fun of. And I do think that Sirius cared a lot for Regulus and it probably hurt him a lot when his brother became a Death Eater.

Please do not apologize for the length of your review! It is the thought that counts and I think the thought was lovely. Thank you so much!

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Review #10, by Violet Gryfindor Decompression

13th December 2013:
This was fabulous! I haven't had this much fun reading a fanfic in a while. The action was incredibly written, the descriptions vivid and detailed yet with excellent pacing. You find just the right balance while also keeping up the distinctive narration, never once losing a beat.

It's a challenge to come up with a coherent review after reading this because my heart is still racing down those winding English roads, not to mention I still feel caught up in Sirius's raging emotions. They are another brilliant aspect of this story because you effectively capture the conflicts he's undergoing. I especially liked how you dealt with this relationship with Regulus, how he's regretful and feels sorry for what his brother has been, and will continue to, undergo. It's a more complex depiction of their relationship than I've seen thus far - most often, Sirius is just angry and despises his brother, but here, Sirius takes on some of the blame for what his brother has become. He did have that opportunity to influence his brother, but he didn't take it, and I was glad to see that someone finally addressed that issue.

The way you write Sirius is the way that I'd love to see him characterized more often. He's so much the sixteen year old rebel, the boy forced to grow up before his time by a family that never could accept him. He's filled with rage and is already growing bitter, but there's still a goodness to him - the way that he doesn't want to upset the Potters shows how much he cares for them in the way he can't for his blood relatives. But you also capture his reckless love of mischief - this prank was worthy of the character who sent Snape to visit a werewolf. This is a very canon portrayal of Sirius, and it's fantastic to see someone writing him so realistically.

There's a lot more I could say about this story, but suffice it to say that I really enjoyed reading it. It's an amazing one-shot, one that's definitely going on my favourites list. :D

Author's Response: Hi, there!

This story is one of my favorites, actually. I little guilty pleasure that allowed me to combine two things I really like: angry, sarcastic Sirius Black and Judas Priest. I'm especially glad that you liked the pacing, because I've never been quite sure about that. It's short compared to what I usually write.

Wow. I don't think I've ever heard that this story made anyone's heart race before. I'll definitely take that as a compliment. Sirius is such an emotional guy that I'm sure a confrontation with his family would turn him into a basket case. Like you, I've never been wild about portrayals of his relationship with Regulus that suggest that there was no love remaining between the two of them. I doubt that was possible for somebody like Sirius because it isn't like Regulus betrayed him in a personal way. Regulus just grew up to be the son that he was expected to be. I'm sure Sirius would have felt that he missed some opportunities to help his brother find a different path.

I wanted to give Sirius a bit of that James Dean swagger in this. At the start of the chapter, he's rebelling against pretty much everything, friend and foe alike. Gradually, he comes back from the brink. He works through some of his anger in his own special way and gets to the point where he's ready to discuss things halfway rationally with his adoptive family.

I'm really glad that you enjoyed it! Thanks for reading and reviewing!

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Review #11, by UnluckyStar57 Decompression

27th July 2013:
Hi! I'm here with your review. :)

I don't really read many song fics, simply because I like to know the songs that the fics are based on, but I knew that anything you wrote would be good. I'm actually listening to the song as I'm writing this review. I've never heard it before, but your plot wasn't solely based around the lyrics, so I was able to understand the emotions that Sirius felt without needing knowledge of the song to validate them. Sometimes, song fics are cemented too closely with the plot of the story, and it makes it really difficult to read without having listened to the song first. It's as though, without the song, the story would vanish into thin air! This is not one of those stories. You've incorporated just enough of the lyrics to show your intention for the plot, but even without them, the story would still be really amazing and understandable. :)

I love how you examine Sirius' relationship with his friends, family, and motorbike as he storms off into the night. The emotions and thoughts are so real, such expected behavior from a character like him, that it seems as though this actually happened in the world that J.K. Rowling invented. That's really awesome, because seeing fanfiction that should be canon is like shaking hands with the Abominable Snowman--it's pretty rare. :P

The adventure that Sirius went on, and the bit of Muggle-baiting that he did, were absolutely spot-on. I could see the night, his burning anger, the "doorknob" in the Jaguar. When I read the words, I was there. You have such powers of description, and yet, it was so interwoven with action that nothing ever stagnated. I'm still trying to figure out how to do that consistently, and I could definitely take lessons from you!

Also, I just wanted to comment on the amount of humor you put into this, even though it was supposed to be angry and filled with rage. The part about the Healers, the competition within the Black family to Death Eater-ize their children, the "doorknob"... It struck me as funny, but it all fit within the tone and style of this piece. Perfection!

You don't need me to tell you that you're an amazing writer, but I will anyway: YOU'RE AN AMAZING WRITER!!! :D

This piece seems very different from the stories I've read of yours in the past, but it's different in a good way. You're so versatile that changing styles must be just like changing shoes for you. (At least, that's from MY perspective...) Wow. Just... Wow. :)

May your pen never run out of ink!


Author's Response: Hi, there! And seriously, you're making me blush here! So many nice things you had to say, I don't quite know where to start. Perhaps at the beginning.

I usually don't like song fics, either. But something about this song and the way it paired with Sirius in "one of his moods" just spoke to me. The song itself is a favorite of mine. A lot of Priest songs are. I'm dating myself horribly, I know. ;) I'm glad that you felt like the story more or less stood on its own. That was the effect I was shooting for.

Back to the point of Sirius being in "one of his moods", I imagined that his thoughts would wander a bit once he calmed down a little. Every kid wants to have a normal relationship with their parents and siblings. I think that's a universal thing. That was never really possible for Sirius, and to me it's always seemed like that bothers him a lot more than he ever let on.

I loved every second of writing Sirius's encounter with the rich guy in the Jag. It was boundless fun. You'll always find humor in my stories, even the darkest among them. It's just part of who I am and how I deal with life, so I write the same way.

Aww, I really appreciate you saying that! And I'm also glad you think I'm able to do a lot of different styles. Sticking to one thing for too long would get boring, I think.

Wow, this was just an awesome review! It totally made my day. I hope you don't mind if I share it in the Reviews That Made Your Day thread, actually. Thanks so much!

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Review #12, by nott theodore Decompression

26th June 2013:
Review tag!

I've been meaning to come and read something else of yours for so long and just haven't got round to it, so when I saw you posting in the tag thread I had to get in there quickly!

I should probably say that I hardly ever read song fics, because they often seem quite disjointed to me, but this one didn't at all. Another reason I don't tend to read them is because I rarely know the song, so this story also started out well as far as that's concerned!

I really enjoyed reading this. I think that your choice of song and the placement of the lyrics you included worked well with Sirius' character and the moment you've chosen to write about, and it flowed well when I read it.

Another thing I don't remember reading before is a story written from Sirius' POV, but I thought your characterisation of him here was brilliant. Nothing he thought or did seemed to be out of character from what we know of him he felt completely believable to read.

I could really feel the anger coming from Sirius - almost as though it was radiating off the screen while reading. The reasons behind it are understandable, and I like the way that there were stages to the storm that was building up inside him.

One thing that is so easy to do is forget how young Sirius and the rest of the Marauders were at the time they were fighting the war, but it's clear here that Sirius is about 19 (if I've done my maths right!) and that comes through in his voice. At the beginning there's almost a petulance to his anger and it highlights really well how young he actually is. His anger is tangible throughout the story, but particularly in the first few paragraphs, when he directs it at everyone else, even when he knows deep down how unreasonable and unjustified it is. I loved his thoughts of Remus speaking in his head, acting as a second conscience for him, encouraging him to do the right thing. The decision not to go back to the Potters was a good one, I think - James certainly would have got mad with him if he had taken his temper out on Lily! But it showed a more mature side to him which he probably had to have with the events he experienced at that age.

The way you described the bike it seemed almost an extension of Sirius, and I think it was a great inclusion in this story. Sirius seems to feel invincible on the bike, despite knowing he isn't, and I like the way that he uses it as an outlet for his anger.

The change in the direction of his anger from others to himself is a very realistic transition. The guilt loading his thoughts when he thought of what had happened to Regulus made me feel so sorry for him. There's so much that has happened to him that he has to deal with, and I can't even begin to imagine how responsible he must feel about his brother joining the Death Eaters. It always makes me sad to think that Sirius died not knowing that his brother had actually tried to stop Voldemort rising to further power.

The details you included about Sirius' family were well chosen and very effective in this story. Bellatrix seemed so accurate, and you could tell that Sirius knew her well enough to know what she was truly capable of. I liked the sense of competition between the two branches of the Black family, both sets of parents trying to outdo each other with their children's accomplishments. I can imagine it happening exactly as you describe - some of the pureblood parents strike me as those pushy 'soccer moms' you find all over.

Although I'm not impressed with the fact that Sirius ended up muggle-baiting, I found it really believable as a way for him to vent his anger, and the descriptions of the driver of the car made me annoyed with him as well - he's definitely the sort of person who would get on my nerves at first sight! Another aspect I enjoyed was the way that Sirius had obviously calmed down a little by the end, so that there was a visible progression.

I picked up on one typo:
"I storm away from the Number 12 Grimmauld Place" -- you don't need 'the' here

Overall, this was a very well-balanced and well thought out story and I really enjoyed reading it. The song choice is perfect for a story about Sirius, and the lyrics only add to the story; they flow so seamlessly in the story that I almost forget it's a song fic. Well done!

Sian :)

Author's Response: Hi, Sian! I was excited when I saw you tag me.

I'm not a fan of song fics, myself, but I thought this song was such a great match for Sirius and his motorcycle. And I'm really glad that I'm not the only person on HPFF who knows any Priest songs except maybe Breaking The Law. ;)

I'm glad you liked the way I write Sirius. I tried really hard to keep him consistent with the age he would have been. In a lot of Marauder stories, the characters wind up sounding like 30-year-olds as opposed to the late-teens/early-20's that they actually are. So Sirius being irrationally angry and hot-headed went well with his age, I thought. He should be petulant and unreasonable to an extent. Everyone is at that age. Poor Remus is just old beyond his years, which makes him a good "voice of reason" for the group.

The bike is definitely an extension of Sirius's personality and it does give him a feeling of invincibility. Motorcycles do that generally, I think, whether they're enchanted or not.

The Sirius Black I remember from the books was dealing with a lot of anger, and a good portion of that was directed at himself. At this point, he's not yet wearing the guilt from James and Lily's murder, but I think he would have felt some measure of responsibility for how Regulus turned out. After all, he could have tried to spend more time with his brother while they were in school together and steer him away from the bad influences. But he was most likely far too busy having fun. And by the time he realized where Regulus was heading, it was too late.

In a twisted sort of way, I enjoyed working in all the little details of the Black family. Talk about an awful family to grow up in! I'm sure there was a lot of not-so-friendly competition between the two branches of the family to see who could turn their kids into the most fanatical pure blood supremacist maniacs. Of course, it blew up in their faces with Andromeda, Sirius and ultimately Narcissa, as well. There's a lesson there, I think.

Ah the guy in the Jag. There really were no "good" people in that exchange, were there? I felt like Sirius needed some way to get his frustration out so that he could return to the Potters' house in a more reasonable frame of mind. Tweedy Jag guy wound up filling that role.

Thank you for pointing out the typo. That's all patched up now.

I'm so pleased that you enjoyed the story! Thanks for the awesome review!

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Review #13, by 800 words of heaven Decompression

25th June 2013:

So it's been a /really/ long time since I read something of yours, and I was casually browsing through your page when my eyes snag on one word: Sirius. Cue embarrassing fan girl moment.

Okay, so the first couple of paragraphs are amazing. Often, I think, we forget that Sirius was just a teenager when he left home, and whilst what he did was brave and everything, he was still, you know, young, and I think that reflects really well in your writing. I can literally hear the petulance and righteous anger in his internal voice, and it really makes him sound like he's sventeen years old. From his word choice to his actions, they all speak of his youth.

I thought it was rather mature of Sirius to make the decision not to go to the Potters in his state of mind. I think it showed a certain depth of character to him that is often not as prevalent. And I adored the fact that it was Remus' voice in his head telling him not to do something as stupid as have a duel with his parents. To me, both of these things showed the positive influence of his friends, and how they're almost saving him from what he could have become if he was left to his own devices.

The song keeps on making me think that Sirius is just going to pull his Wayfarers or Aviators out of the pocket of his grungy leather jacket, and go ride his bike down some lonely, dusty highway, into the red setting sun, with rock music playing in the background. Usually, I'm a bit sceptical of song fics, but I think with this one, you've used it really effectively, so it doesn't mess with the flow of the story, and adds a lot to its overall tone. The lyrics are almost part of the story itself, which is really clever!

The description with the motorcycle was really cool! It was expressive, as well as emotive. The way you described the bike felt like it was the personification of Sirius; almost an extension, or an inanimate embodiment of his personality.

Oh, how I love the way you describe the Blacks! There's something darkly humorous about it, whilst still being scornful and derisive. It tells me a lot about Sirius' personality. He's probably a very sarcastic person, with a dry sense of humour!

It's wonderful to see that you've shown Sirius being sympathetic to Regulus, and feeling sorry and disappointed. Often, Sirius is portrayed as outright hating his brother, but here, he seems to have a more balanced view of him, and can see some of the reasons why he's the way he is.

The way Sirius describes the driver of the Jag showed another side of his character. He sounds hypocritical here, and we know that's the case in canon, and I just adore the way you've written it so much!

"Maybe I should start following football." I laughed so hard that I just woke up my dog from the other room! He's just trotted in and is watching me trying to catch my breath. I have no idea why I find this so funny, but it is!

Ah! I loved this so much! It was amusing, and deep, and full of teenage angst! So good! I can completely imagine Sirius acting this way, and thinking these things! Your writing was so quintessentially him, yet there were aspects of his personality that were brought to light which aren't often focussed on, and it was a pleasure to read! Thanks for the amazingness!

Author's Response: Yay! All of the sudden, people are loving on my poor, awkward little song fic. I couldn't be happier, actually. Something about the combination of Sirius and Judas Priest really spoke to me.

I'm glad you picked up on what I tried to do with Sirius. All of the Marauders were so young during the first war, it's kind of ridiculous that people write them as though they're a bunch of 30-year-olds. Sirius, in particular, has a ton of issues because of his family background. The Blacks were, perchance, the worst family in all the magical world to grow up in.

Young and hot-headed as he is, I do imagine that there are certain lessons that Sirius had learned often enough -- the hard way -- that they would have made an impact even when he was completely livid. Upsetting Lily would have been the shortest path to upsetting James, which is the last thing in the world he needs when he's already an emotional wreck. Remus was a fun "voice of reason" to use because it also allowed Sirius to harsh on him a bit, which is always entertaining to me.

I never even considered the possibility that Sirius would have some awesome shades, but now that you mention it, that would have been pretty sweet. I'm glad you liked how the song fit into the story. That's almost always the thing that turns me off to song fics.

When it comes to Marauders stories, I can go either way on Sirius's relationship with Regulus. He had plenty of reasons to hate his brother and plenty of reasons to pity him. Either way, though, I imagine he carries some amount of guilt over how things turned out.

The driver of the Jag was pure fun for me. He was the kind of uppity, self-important, annoying, tweedy old barfmat who you just want to put in his place. And so Sirius does, even though it is a bit hypocritical of him. I enjoyed the football crack a lot, myself. It's a beautiful game, but the fans have earned a rather dubious reputation for behavior.

I'm really glad that you enjoyed it. Thanks so much for the lovely review!

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Review #14, by Jchrissy Decompression

26th May 2013:

I don't know if I'll ever be the hugest Judas Priest song fan, but this one still fit Sirius perfectly.

I loved that, while it was a song fic and they did help prod the story along, it was still a story within itself. You captured the intense peaks of Sirius's personality so well but still managed to put an actual story line with them. I'm not entirely sure what brought Sirius to his parent's house in the first place, if it was to actually talk Regulus out of his decision or not, but it set up for the perfect Angry Mood Sirius.

The combination of him obviously not being successful with convincing Regulus to change his mind, and having to deal with them set the perfect storm in Sirius Black world. Anger, which is always too close to the surface I'm sure, guilt that he doesn't want to admit to feeling about where Regulus will end up and why, and plain and simple disgust at the people he came from. Now if that doesn't get this boy in crazy state, I don't know what will.

The moment Sirius sets off on his bike, you know it isn't going to be a calm night. Just like misery loves company, turmoil loves turmoil. And what better thing to mix anger with than the roar of a motorcycle mixed with the rush it brings. You know you aren't invincible, but you still feel that way. And that's a damn dangerous combination :P.

When Sirius's thoughts start to even out and dwell on Regulus, I felt myself just wanting to hug him. There's so much guilt in there, so much that he doesn't want to come to terms with and he probably doesn't even have the ability. Maybe he could have helped change Regulus, but maybe not. Either way, he doesn't want to face that and just wants to lose himself in it all.

Which sets us up perfectly for your next scene. I've never actually heard tweedy used as an insult, so now I'm giggling. It works perfectly here, and poor Sirius was going to hate the person driving the car no matter who it was, so he might as well make his insults creative :P.

I can't really comment too much on this scene because it's just so much... intensity. In a very good way. The combination of anger and amusement was just so enjoyable to read, and I was just as frustrated/entertained at his terrible joke as I was the first time I read it :P

The way we move from his need to race, then his need to really twist the knife he's putting in the man was just great. He's already terrified him by flying off the cliff, and now he's going to give him a heart attack by coming back up. Ah, never a dull day in the life of Sirius Black :P.

I'm happy you ended with the clear picture that Sirius's anger had diminished a little, and he's ready to go back to the people he loves to comfort him. Though of course he won't be thinking of it that way.

This was such an intense and enjoyable story. Like I said before, it stands by itself without the need of the song lyrics, which I think is my favorite thing about it. They're there to enhance it, but don't detract from the awesome tale you spun for us.

Author's Response: Hi, Jami!

I think we can all agree that you should become a *huger* Priest fan. Well, maybe you don't agree, but I'm in complete agreement. This song does fit Sirius to a T. It's all about a protagonist who's been marginalized and frustrated and he's taking to the open road to rediscover himself and release his frustration. I always imagined that Sirius loved his bike because of the freedom and "me time" it allowed him.

I tried really hard to make this a meaningful story that could have stood on its own even without the song lyrics. I don't really like song fics that are completely song-driven. There needs to be more substance there, and I'm glad you felt that there was.

I definitely put Sirius in a bad spot, didn't I? Bad Dan, bad! I'm sure, however, that he couldn't completely avoid his family after leaving home. And I do imagine him as the sort of brother who would have tried to talk Regulus out of following the path that ultimately led to his death.

I'm glad you liked the peaks and valleys of Sirius's night. I didn't want to make it *too* obvious what was really eating at him the most, because I felt like it even took him some time to sort it all out. He's an emotional guy, and there were so many different bad dynamics going on in that family.

I think the first time I ever saw "tweedy" used as an insult, it was in a P.J. O'Rourke book. I love it as a way to describe the sort of faux-college professor, wannabe intellectual society type of guy. The tweed jacket had leather elbow patches, but I figured Sirius probably couldn't see those from his vantage point.

What Sirius did to the guy definitely wasn't nice, but I feel like the driver of the Jag is the sort of person who steps on other people quite often, so I'm sure he had it coming.

I'm really pleased that you enjoyed it! Once I started writing, it rolled out pretty effortlessly. Thanks for reading and reviewing!

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Review #15, by foreverendstoday Decompression

26th May 2013:
So I'll start by saying that I've never really enjoyed song fics that much and I hardly ever read them but yours I did. :)
The song you chose although I hadn't ever heard of it seemed to fit Sirius perfectly. Well done. I think it might even be better that it's not a super well known song because then you have to read the lyrics instead of believing you already know them.

Anyway really nice work for being able to get me to enjoy a song fic and well edited :)

Author's Response: I've never been much for song fics, either. A big part of that is the mostly commonly used songs on this site. Taylor Swift is bad enough when she isn't being smeared across a story I love.

This has always been one of my favorite Priest songs, and to me it goes perfectly with Sirius. He's such a cocky, carefree spirit, and he has that motorcycle. A great match all the way around. It's definitely not a well-known song, but it should be better known!

I'm glad you enjoyed it. Thanks for taking a minute to review!

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Review #16, by Georgia Weasley Decompression

26th May 2013:
There are so many really good lines in here. My favorites are:
"Certain nights are made for dancing with the devil."
"This is actually amazing stress relief. Maybe I should start following football."
"The it they moved out here to get away from is about to come calling."
"Oh, this is brilliant. Mean-spirited. Cruel. Borderline muggle-baiting. But brilliant, nonetheless."
You really captured Sirius here, and the choice in lyrics is fantastic. I'm really not much for song fics, but this is good. ~GW

Author's Response: Hello, there!

This one was definitely one-liner heavy. But Sirius is like that, I think. He's very quotable.

This is one of my absolute favorite Priest songs. Priest, in general, is surprisingly good inspiration for HP stories. I now have a smoldering idea for pairing Peter Pettigrew with Judas Rising...

Thanks so much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #17, by LilyEPotter Decompression

25th May 2013:
I agree, while I haven't heard the song, it does fit Sirius well.

I only have one question - is Mr and Mrs Potter's house James' parents' house or James and Lily's house?

I can just imagine the look on the driver's face as he watched Sirius start flying on his motorbike. :)

Great story!

Author's Response: I really loved the way the song paired with Sirius in a certain sort of mood. I'm glad you like the combination.

The house I was referring to was James's parents' house. I don't think I ever said so, but I'm imagining James and Sirius being around 19 in this story. So it was before Harry was born but possibly after James and Lily were married. At any rate, they and Sirius were staying with James's parents at the time.

I really enjoyed the idea of Sirius tormenting some uptight muggle investment banker. It was definitely something I thought he would get a kick out of.

Thanks for reading and taking a moment to review!

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