Reading Reviews for To Have and to Hold
16 Reviews Found

Review #1, by AngelEyez3954 'Till Death

10th February 2014:
WOW! WOW! WOW! This chapter is so beautifully written; I can't even begin to describe how much I LOVE this chapter and story.

The scene with the fight between Gellert, Aberforth and Albus is really well written, and the answer to the "What If" prompt is very well thought out. The death of Aberforth is very sad, but I can see why you chose that route. I particularly like the ending when Albus recognizes the same "quality" in Tom Riddle as Gellert. Also, the change in Albus' reflection in the Mirror of Erised also makes sense.

Overall I really love your story.

Great work!

Author's Response: Haha! I really really thought that if Ariana hadn't died, there was nothing stopping her from loosing control like she did with her mother. I'm so happy you liked it! Thanks for the reviews, and for winning first place!!! In was sooo excited! I'll be requesting the reviews as soon as I edit some pieces. Thank you again, I had a great time!

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Review #2, by AngelEyez3954 Musical Hands

10th February 2014:
Hello again! Another great chapter. I love the way you're setting up the relationship between Albus and Gellert. Once again the characterizations are wonderful. I love how sweet and naive Ariana is, and the scene when she is stung by the bee is so beautifully written.

Great job :)

Author's Response: I'm glad that you liked it! Thanks for reviewing all the chapters. I always thought of Ariana as picture perfect when she was healthy. +]

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Review #3, by AngelEyez3954 In the Still of Night

10th February 2014:
Wow! First off, let me say thank you for joining my challenge. This is such a great beginning. I really love the characterization of Albus and Aberforth here, and I cannot wait to keep reading!

Great job :)

Author's Response: Thank you for posting it! I had a lot of fun. +]

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Review #4, by toomanycurls 'Till Death

27th January 2014:
Oh wow. wowzer. My eyes are like this: O.O

I really admore Aberforth in this story. He is just as Albus described him to Harry - so noble when it comes to taking care of his sister and family. I do sympathize with Dumbledore though - he has a friend who is not just attractive but his intellectual equal. He needs love but not the kind his family can give him. Albus does seem to have a general misunderstanding of Ariana and her (dis)abilties.

I loved how you wrote the scene with Gellert explaining the deathly hallows to Dumbledore. I liked that Albus was a bit skeptical of such items being talked about in a children's book and Gellert's knowledge of them and how this was just a stop on his quest. Gellert's assumption that Albus would be going on the previously unmentioned trip was quite revealing - he's been calculating in Albus' help and companionship.

The duel and Ariana's injury (that's why it's AU, right? She doesn't die, she's just extremely injuired) was heartbreaking to read. Oh the moment when Gellert used the crucio curse on Aberforth - I could just hear Albus' heart break.

Ariana living through the pain of the curse is somehow harder for me than having her just die. :-/

I love the spin you put on Dumbledore at the end. Quite unlike himself in the book, where he seemed to have learned his lesson about family and love, after all the years he's still just pining for the boy who was so interesting to him that summer.

this is just a wonderful story! I've loved reading it.


Author's Response: I'm glad you enjoyed it!! I felt like Aberforth was an old friend in this, I don't know. He was definitely easiest Dumbledore to write. Lol. Though I'm glad that my Albus held up too.

I'm glad that you picked up that about Gellert. From the moment he met Albus (I felt) he was playing a game in order to get help getting the hallows. Everything he did was to get the ending he wanted. Completely calculated, like a chess game.

Yes, that's where the AU comes in. I felt like in order for Albus to grow into the person we knew and loved, he needed a loss in his life, and sense my prompt was what if ariana never died, I figured if she hadn't died, she wouldn't have been able to stop herself, like she did with their mother.

Thanks for the swap!! I always enjoy your things. I'll be off the find a new story since I read and reviewed the penultimate chapter of Pure Intentions earlier today. +]

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Review #5, by Aphoride In the Still of Night

27th January 2014:
Hello, there! So, when I saw that this was an Albus/Gellert, I simply had to stop by - genuinely, I couldn't have simply wandered past - and check it out. I adore them to bits! :)

I really like this! Obviously this is more of a prologue-y sort of chapter, really, than an action packed one, but I like that and I think it fits with the time, you know? Their mother's only recently died, things aren't quite as tense/difficult as they get later on... this is, in essence, almost the calm before the storm, in a way, for all of them.

I loved the way you wrote both Albus and Aberforth. Albus is such a difficult character to write in general, and in particular when he's young because, gah, he's just Albus, you know? He has a distinct manner and way of speaking, and it's tough to do... so I think you've done so, so well with him. You could have taken away his name and I would still have known exactly who he was from the beginning, pretty much.

I think, however, that your Aberforth is brilliant, too. We don't hear all that much about him in the books, other than that he was closer to Ariana than Albus was, was a member of the Order, saved Harry's life, looked after Dobby and kept goats... that's not that much to go on, but I think you've really taken him as a character and made him your own and developed him further. I like how he seems to consider himself as Ariana's primary carer, and not Albus, and is so loyal and devoted to her that he'd sell goat's milk in order to look after her. You've really shown the differences between them, setting it up really nicely for fireworks later on ;)

One thing - at the beginning, you'll do better at creating tension or fear or the idea of being chased if you use short, snappy sentences. Yours at the moment are a bit too long, really, and take away from the feeling, I think. Also, be sure to try and keep references to objects, clothes, styles, etc. in keeping with the period - 'pictures', in frames or not, would have been called 'photographs' then ;)

I'm so curious about where you go with this, how you take it and how your characters develop. Obviously we know the ending, but so far this is really good and interesting, and I'd love to know how you spin it out from here! Really, really good start! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: I'm glad you like them! I've seen a lot of people who don't like to read about Albus Dumbledore when he was younger, or with someone. I'm glad you stopped by!

Yes, this was my test run/character development chapter to make sure I could actually pull off the story. Haha. Though I did try to make it as appealing as possible, it was mostly exposition.

Oh wow! I'm so happy you think I did a good job on Albus! He was definitely the scariest prospect, but I found once I actually got to it, it wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. haha. Aberforth was just natural, which I found to be a little odd.

You're right! Thank you for pointing that out. I'll have to go and edit it.

Actually, it's AU, for the What If Challenge, and my prompt was "What if Ariana never died," so we don't know how it will end. *creepy music* Haha. Thank you so much for the swap, I'm really glad you liked it.

Until next time! RHJ

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Review #6, by Rumpelstiltskin In the Still of Night

26th January 2014:
I'm here for our swap (and to check out the competition for the challenge) :D!

Onomatopoeia! I love it, and I love using it! It definitely serves its purpose here, capturing the eerie aura of the beginning, with Albus being surrounded by ominous clocks during his dream.

You have some fantastic descriptions here, Albus waking up in sweating, the linen nightshirt, the night air, the moonlight...and etc. It created some very vivid imagery, which was absolutely lovely.

Given that the music in his dream had led to the ominous room with the clocks, I have an equally ominous feeling for Albus investigating the "beautiful and mysterious" music!

Oh Ariana... you've done a fantastic job indirectly explaining her near traumatized state. Albus truly does make for a fantastic brother in this, doesn't he? I find it very heartwarming. Furthermore, Aberforth makes a fantastic brother as well. They've both exhibit a great deal of concern for Ariana. I love that Albus expects Aberforth to go back to school, so that he may do something with his life. I completely understand Aberforth for not wanting to leave though, as Albus evidently doesn't know how to properly handle Ariana, and her safety means more to Aberforth than anything else.

I wonder where the music is coming from!

Anyway, this was really fantastic, I think you did an awesome job with your prompt!


Author's Response: Onomatopoeia! My hubby and I were trying to figure out which part of speech that was just the other day! THANK YOU! Gah, it had been bothering me! Lol.

I'm glad that you like it. I was afraid that no one would like my young Albus, I'm glad you think I did him justice!

Ariana was probably the most difficult to write, honestly. I didn't know where to start. Her sleeping was like my test run. After that I kinda just went for it. Lol!

The music. I was hoping I didn't get too into it, I'm glad that it didn't detract from the story.

Thanks for the swap! Good luck in the challenge!

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Review #7, by Lululuna 'Till Death

24th January 2014:
Hi, here for review swap! :) I hope it's ok I picked this story, I really wanted to find out what happened and noticed it didn't have any reviews yet.

This was a wonderful ending to a beautiful story. Ah, so you picked Gryffindor for Aberforth? I liked that choice, and it fit him well from what we know of him from the books. I also found it so interesting how Albus was constantly underestimating Aberforth and putting him down throughout the story - how he thought his brother didn't belong in Gryffindor and had embarrassed him, how he thinks that Aberforth isn't quick-witted and that he won't understand certain words.

Oh, Ariana. :( You wrote her so perfectly, how sweet and lovely she is most of the time, and how much her brothers adore her. My heart melted a little when she gave Albus a hug before going out to the garden, and how happy she seemed at times. I also liked the idea of how shy she was around strangers. The description of her fit when the boys were dueling was very chilling. I could see how unearthly she would have been in that moment in my mind, and it was a little terrifying. I really liked this line and how it described her:

Her voice was the pure, high sound of a bell, innocent, and harmless. The perfect disguise for the destruction hiding within.

There were so many little canon details here, like the Beedle the Bard book, and Gellert hunting for the Invisibility cloak in Godric's Hollow. The story fit into canon really smoothly.

Gellert is a very interesting character, how he's both easy to like and to hate. I can see why Albus is so fascinated with him, as he does have those positive moments like when Ariana passes him the bread. But then there's the true fury and evil which explodes out of him at times which completely throws off his whole character, but in a really intriguing way. How Albus broke his nose was a great detail as well.

The boys did sound quite ridiculous in how they were going to cart Ariana around while looking for Hallows. It was a ridiculous plan. The comparison about how she could barely sleep in her own bed most nights really hit home for me especially.

The ending with both Ab and Gellert dying was such a plot twist! I was expecting Gellert to be killed and then the Dumbledores to live happily ever after, for some reason, but I love how you flipped that around and turned it into an equally tragic ending as in canon. The idea that Ariana was shut away for the rest of her life and never got to be outside again just made all of her family's sacrifices all the more tragic, and thinking of her without the comfort of her brothers broke my heart a little. And then there was that amazing detail about Albus seeing Gellert in the mirror of Erised- ah! It was a brilliant ending, and showed how captivating Gellert was to him even after he had done those horrible things to the family. I wonder if you were insinuating that perhaps when Dumbledore in canon looked into the mirror, he saw Gellert as well. We'd never know!

Brilliant story, I loved it! :)

Author's Response: Wonderful! I don't mind! And yes, I needed to know how people felt about the ending!

I think Aberforth just had little brother syndrome. Albus never really took him seriously.

Ariana was the hardest to write. I knew so much about Aberforth, Albus, and Gellert, but almost nothing about her. I wasn't sure how invalid to make her, or how charming, but I'm glad that you liked her so much, that really makes me happy. +] The duel scene really made me sad. I knew what was going to happen, and I knew how much it would destroy her, and everyone and gah. I felt bad, but... idk. Sometimes it feels like the story is in charge and not me, if that makes sense. Lol. I'm one of those people who doesn't sleep, so the line about her voice wasn't actually in the first draft. I was thinking about how bare the descriptions were in the last part, and thought I needed to put more emphasis on the first time Albus hears her voice in years, so yes. It's one of my favorite lines as well. +]

I try my hardest to make things true to canon. I mean, we all love the characters JKR wrote, so why change them?

Gellert and I have a love hate relationship. Haha. (Yes, I'm probably as crazy as I sound. lol) Blinded by his own ambition, too deep to see top. I felt bad for him, really...

And yes. The ending. AU isn't really my thing, but I am entering this into the What If challenge, and the thing about time travel and what if's that I prefer is the whole equivalent exchange. Not to mention, in my mind, Ariana's death is what saved Ab, Al, and Gellert. She'd already killed her mother on accident, and the only thing that kept her from being that violent in such a high stress situation was her death. So, if Albus kept his sister, the one thing he loved and wanted to fight for back then, he would need to lose something just as dear. As there wasn't anything as dear to him as a baby sister, in order to have the same changes in him take place and for him to grow into the Dumbledore we know and love, he had to lose the brother he would never make up with, and the love that could never be. *tear* I feel like a bad person because of Ariana, but yes... there was no way they would let Albus keep taking care of her after that. +[

And the ending. The whole resolution of this story was based around equivalent exchange. He kept his sister, there was no tragedy or regret surrounding her anymore, no more question of plaguing guilt. There was no resolution between he and Gellert, and so that is who he saw in the mirror. And yes, I think maybe Albus saw Ariana and Gellert. I mean, in my head, the reason he never visited Gellert was because he still had feelings for him, even after everything.

Thank you so much for the review! Let me pop over and see what I can find. +]

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Review #8, by toomanycurls Musical Hands

24th January 2014:
Hello!! I'm so happy you decided to review swap with me. :D

This is a beautifully crafted chapter. I love how suavely your words flow together. Your tension/conflict between Aberforth and Dumbledore is really well done. I could see Albus wanting to just have a non-arugmentative discussion with his brother but never getting that out of him.

Your explanation about Dumbledore not having fancied anyone before and that he tended to look toward the inside first was wonderfully true to Dumbledore's character. Oh but then there's Gellert. It was fascinating how Albus hyper-focused on his hands - I think people do that quite a bit when they meet someone they're taken with. I laughed so hard at Dumbledore spewing his whole name then feeling embarrased. And, oh wow, that kiss to the hand got me all warm too. I can't blame him for blushing.

You did Gellert's slight accent wonderfully well. His speech comes across like a non-native english speaker who is quite proficient with the language.

Gellert's letter to Dumbledore was magnificent. I loved how it was so cordial and yet so complimentary. I never thought such letters could be flirty but yours was! Dumbledore's response was just as proper yet full of longing. I like that Aberforth brings up their main conflict as soon as Albus wants to start spending his time with Gellert - Ariana needs to be cared for. I could see that argument brewing over several weeks and errupting in a huge fight like it did in the books.

The first signs of Gellert's dislike of muggles is interesting - Albus does seem to look the other way when it comes to Gellert's ideals.

I thought having Gellert see and hear all of the problems surrounding Ariana was quite a turning point in the story and for Albus as a person. Without that personal reason for Albus to want to abolish the statute of secrety, I don't think he would have given the idea much credence. Ooh, and hte conversation on love was just brilliant. Both boys are tugging at the other's ideals and nudging each other in a direction they wouldnt have considered.

Brilliant chapter! I'm excited to see where the story goes next.


Author's Response: I'm glad that it flowed well! I actually wrote this chapter in two large chunks, weeks apart, and I was worried that it wouldn't flow. I'm glad it worked out!

Aberforth is probably my favorite character in this. He reminds me of a moody Jimminy Cricket. lol.

I thought that Dumbledore was probably new at the whole romance thing. I wanted Albus to be taken with something unique about him, not his eyes or anything, and the first thing he heard was the music that he fell in love with. The hands make the music, so... viola! I got the original idea from V for Vendetta- 'It was her wrists'.

Thank you! I didn't want to do the whole, every time there's a w replace it with a v, because I thought that he'd be a little more inconspicuous about it, but I did want to make him foreign. Lol. I did some research into Hungarian customs, and it said that they do kiss the back of hands to show respect, so I thought JACKPOT! What is more tastefully alluring than I kiss on the hand! I'm glad you liked it too.

I worked pretty hard on the letters, and I'm glad that they payed off in the end. It seemed like their letters were a staple of their relationship in Rita's book, and I wanted that to be a part of this too.

I thought that if I made Gellert foreign enough, Albus would dismiss his dislike of muggles as a cultural difference and not a character flaw. And yes, the personal aspect of saving Ariana is Albus's link to the greater good. The next chapter is the last! Hopefully you'll have time to look at it sometime. +]

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Review #9, by LilyLou Musical Hands

18th January 2014:

I was going to read the story you originally requested, but I read the first chapter to this, and now that the second is up, I thought I'd read this one!

This is so beautiful! Ahh, it's so great. Gellert is so fascinating, and evil. I hate him, yet he's one of the characters I love the most... if that makes any sense whatsoever...


This is a great chapter. You write Aberforth marvelously. The way you write him is exactly how I'd picture him. Snarky, temperamental, and extremely protective of Ariana. He's always yelling at Albus, as expected, and he is always defending Ariana.

Great chapter! I can't wait to read on!


Author's Response: Hello! I'm glad this chapter held up to the last one! I was a little worried, and so happy when it placed in the Challenge!

I know what you mean about Gellert. When I started out I didn't realize how alluring he'd be. (Guess me and Albus have something in common. Lol) And though I will hate him soon (the next chapter may very well be the last), I'm content with liking him now. +]

Aberforth. I feel bad for Aberforth. He has it rough, but Albus is doing his best.

Thanks for the swap! It's always a pleasure. +]

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Review #10, by AlexFan Musical Hands

18th January 2014:
I'm here to review for the challenge! I've only ever read one other story featuring Albus and Gellert so this was my second story featuring the two of them.

This was really interesting, I've never read anything showing how Albus met Gellert and anything about their friendship. You definitely showed the reader how the two became such close friends. I love how you showed that dark side of Gellert at the very end that Dumbledore mentioned he knew existed in the books but decided to ignore.

As intelligent and wise as Albus is, even he was blinded by love (as are a lot of teenagers). I love how you worked the quote into the story. I almost didn't even notice that you had until I checked what quote I had given you. It was so natural and it fit in perfectly, it sounded exactly like something that Albus would say.

I loved the way that this was written. It's being told from Albus's point of view and the wording and style in which you wrote the chapter fit perfectly.

Great job on the entry and good luck in the challenge!

Author's Response: Thank you so much! This is the first time I have ever placed in a challenge, it's very encouraging. I soon as I saw the quote, I knew who I wanted to say it, and in what context.

As this is the first historical-ish period I've done, I'm glad the wording and style fit. I really strive to have my writing as in character as possible, and it's wonderful to hear I've done a good job. Thank you again! It was a really fun challenge!

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Review #11, by ReeBee In the Still of Night

14th January 2014:
Hi there! :D Here for our review swap! This was so interesting! :D

Okay, firstly Characterisation. To me, it seemed really in canon :) the most in canon character (sorry about the weird wording!) was Abeforth :) he was written really well :D Dumbledore was in canon too! I can't say much about him as I haven't read much on him, but, I do think u did well :). My favourite part was when Albus asks about what else they want him to do :)

Description was good :) there isn't much you could improve on but maybe a sentence or two in between the dialogue would help with the flow?

Plot/Flow: the plot was really interesting! I loved it! I've never read one like this before so yay! And the flow was good too! The plot got moving, and it wasn't too fast paced! So great job! :D

There were also no major grammar or syntax errors :)

Great job! Thanks for the fun review swap! :D


Author's Response: I'm glad you liked it! This is my first time writing on Albus Dumbledore, so I'm glad that you thought he was in character. Aberforth just kinda came naturally, so that makes sense.

I'm glad everything was good! Thanks for the swap!

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Review #12, by toomanycurls In the Still of Night

14th January 2014:
Oh wow, I love this story.

The opening of this chapter is so vivid and eerie. I like the idea of him being startled out of sleep by an unknown source of music. Your way of mixing the description of his room with the description of the music made it seem like the music was all throughout his space.

Your prose in this are poetic and extremely well done. It almost felt musical in a way I can't quite articulate. I love how you show Albus' love and concern for his sister. He knows he's not her favorite brother but still feels that sense of protective duty towards her. Despite his faults, he really is a good older brother.

Aberforth is quite confrontational - but I can understand why. You really captured their rocky relationship beautifully. I love their quips and anger that's just under the surface. I really like that the argument of who should stay and watch over Ariana comes up now - I'm sure it was a repeated argument between them. It's quite sad that Albus feels quite underappreciated by Aberforth.

I'm guessing that the music is from Gellert - I'm excited to see how they meet! It's excellent foreshadowing with the music driving the two brothers together but yet pulling them apart as they argue (not about the music specifically but life in general).


Author's Response: I'm glad you liked it! The dream bit took some editing, but I'm happy with the way it turned out in the end. And yes, the music is from Gellert. +] I figured it would be a nice contrast to how we see him to produce such a beautiful melody.

I feel bad for Aberforth. I can only imagine what it must be like to have his mom gone, never know his dad, and to know he's going to be seperated from the one family member he's connected to. I figured he'd take out a lot of that on Albus, hence being so confrontational.

I'm glad you liked it! Hopefully you'll like the next chapter as well, if you have the time to read it. Lol. Thanks for the swap!

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Review #13, by Lululuna Musical Hands

11th January 2014:
Hi again! :) Wow, this chapter was just as fantastic as the last one.

I love the development of the relationship between Gellert and Albus, and how fascinated Albus is by the foreigner. The descriptions of Gellert's hands and how they fascinated Albus was really interesting, and how at the very beginning in Gellert he sees this ability for charisma and control, the "ferocious discipline." It's clear as well that Gellert knows how much influence he has over Albus right from the beginning, and it's so interesting how they both know instinctively that the other is an equal in his brilliance. I also liked how he was presented as distinctly foreign, yet still tries to conceal his accent by disciplining and controlling his voice.

Albus' past romantic history was very telling to me. I liked how he acknowledged that he didn't care for girls, and how he was once infatuated with a boy until he realized that boy could not keep up with him. It fits, to me, why Albus never loved anybody other than Gellert (well, as far as we know), because no other man could match him in brilliance.

I really like Gellert here and how you've written him. He has that charming mask which slips on occasion, and I can see both the alluring person he is and the power-hungry dark wizard he will become. it's very unique how his thinking muggles are beneath wizards is so engrained in his thoughts, and how he calls them lessers- that was fascinating and telling. I find him to be very dynamic, as he seems to have pity for Ariana, although he could just be convincing Albus to join him through Albus' love for his sister. The differences between their opinions on love illustrated the shifts between them just perfectly, and I especially liked the juxtaposition of what love can do "for" or "to" you.

Your language here, both in the dialogue and description, is very fluid and has the appropriate amount of formality fitting the time which is really lovely to read. I can tell how much thought has gone into constructing Godric's hollow and Albus' world. I'm especially excited to read more about Aberforth and Ariana- you write all of these characters really beautifully and in character, it's a real joy to read. :)

Lovely job! (and don't feel obligated to review two of my chapters, I got a little carried away :P)

Author's Response: Oh good! I'm glad I did well with Grindelwald! He is such a mysterious, lore driven character, I hoped it wouldn't be too off-putting to see him all fleshed out. I've also noticed that people don't really want to think about how Albus cared for him in his younger years, as though they don't want to acknowledge the one dark spot on his shinning history.

I thought that giving a little background into his romantic side might help others understand the allure of Gellert. Like you said, he never could be attracted to anyone else, because he always felt as though he were the teacher, and Gellert was the one person he felt was eye to eye with him, intellectually speaking.

The hands! I obsessed over that paragraph. I feel like everyone is immediately attracted to SOMETHING in people they develop a relationship with, even if they don't feel attracted to them at first, and I knew from the beginning that I wanted Gellert to be a musician. It seemed like that was the one thing that Albus never tried his hand at (that we knew of) and it seemed the perfect introduction. So with wanting him to be immediately taken by some physical aspect as well as a non physical attribute, I figured the most astounding part of any musician is the hands. (I also got the idea from the line in V for Vendetta "It was her wrists." I wanted something like that for Albus.) I'm glad it turned out right.

Also, you have eased my mind about the fluidity. I wrote this chapter in two large chunks, weeks apart, and worried that it wouldn't flow well. I'm glad that the transition was smooth, and the language seems appropriate for the period. I tried to model it after the Arthur Conan Doyle/ Bram Stoker style, because I'm not good with history, and didn't know exactly how much 'old style' to do. +]

Your reviews have been very helpful! Thank you so much!

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Review #14, by Lululuna In the Still of Night

11th January 2014:
Hello! Here to review swap, I'm not sure if you saw my comment yet or not but I went ahead and read this and got to excited not to review right away anyway. :P

I love this, and the idea of the challenge - what if Ariana didn't die- is really fantastic. I have no idea how you're going to write it (I would be so overwhelmed) but there's a lovely start here and I'm very excited to see how the plot of HP changes were Ariana still alive. It's just such an incredible idea!

I love Albus here, how you've taken what we know of his younger self from the books and turned him into this selfish, rather self-involved young man. I feel like he's the sort who would be very polished and polite to outsiders, but his true nastiness is brought out by Aberforth. It's interesting how he thought about the stone to bring his mother back to take care of Ariana, while as an old man he had wished he had it to apologize and redeem himself. It's fascinating how you're setting him up to change.

Ariana just seemed so sweet and lovely here, though with an air of delicacy and the need to be protected from herself and others. It was interesting how although Albus is clearly bitter, his love for Ariana and how he treasures those quiet moments with her shines through.

"I think it's safe to assume there will be many things you never understand Aberforth," Albus shot back rather snappishly. This line was so perfectly in character for Albus Dumbledore, and reminded me so much of the old man from the books but with that snobbish self-entitled tone which Albus lost as he grew older and wiser. It was brilliant- I feel like he says similar things to Tom Riddle, but in an entirely different tone and with a different intention.

"Show her your NEWT results, and explain she doesn't know what she's doing?" I thought this was a wonderful line as well. It sort of revealed Albus' snobbery and how Aberforth recognizes and sees through it; how although so many people think Albus is brilliant, Abe sees through it and knows that there are more important things. I really liked Aberforth in the books, and he's great here as well. He seems very noble, and clearly cares a great deal for Ariana and is underrated by his older brother. It fit so well with both characters how Albus insisted Aberforth go to school (since that's what matters most to Albus, education), while Abe truly wants Ariana to be cared for. I wonder: I'm not sure if JKR ever Sorted him, but do you have a house in mind for him? Here he seems a little like a Hufflepuff, or maybe a Gryffindor. I quite like the idea of him being in Hufflepuff since it's less glamourous then Albus being in Gryffindor, actually, since Aberforth flies under the radar and is less admired than Albus.

I have one tiny historical comment: it's mentioned that Albus has pictures on his wall, but I feel like either "portrait" (if it's painted) or "photograph" (if it's taken by a late nineteenth century camera) would fit better with the era. Picture seems a little modern. Just a thought, and that's me being very nitpicky. Everything else was wonderful.

I'm predicting now that the piano music has something to do with Grindelwald... hmm, it will be interesting to see how he interacts with the family and how things change.

Brilliant job! :D

Author's Response: Thank you! I hoped that my vision of young, rather arrogant Albus would fit into what others thought he might be like. He is by no means evil, he just has a rather negative perspective on his situation, especially since he worked so hard to be able to do what he wanted after school.

Aberforth! I didn't have much love for Abe in the books, but the more I write of this story, the more I like him. Lol. I guess I just needed to explore the man behind, and how he got to be how he is. I specifically designed the first chapter to completely explore the relationship between the two brothers before introducing Grindlewald into the mix.

And you're right about the picture thing. Never thought of it. Lol. +] Thanks. +]

I'm glad you like it, and I would love to review two of your chapters as well, though it may be later in the day before I get to it. (My little one wants to go outside right now, and this is the first day it hasn't been raining in a while. Lol) Wasn't expecting that when I posted the review swap! +]

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Review #15, by marauderfan In the Still of Night

7th December 2013:
Hi! Here for the review swap!

This is a great start! I think this is such an interesting idea - what would have happened if Ariana hadn't died. The possible ripple of consequences from such a change is enormous - like that could have changed the whole course of history in the wizarding world if Albus had made another decision.

I like the way you wrote Albus and Aberforth. You said you were interested in hearing feedback about the way you wrote young Dumbledore - and honestly I think this is wonderful! He's nothing like adult Dumbledore. But, obviously, Albus would be very different as a teenager/young adult to how he is as an old, wise man who has made a lot of mistakes in his life. Though I can see hints of the Dumbledore we know, in that he does care about Ariana, the arrogant and self-involved Albus in this chapter easily fits in with the story we know of Dumbledore and I can easily see how he could have been this way before Ariana died and Albus changed his view of things. So if she didn't die... he wouldn't have been so different as an adult, I can't even begin to imagine how different! What a great idea for a story and you've done a wonderful job with the first chapter! :)

Author's Response: Sorry it's been taking me so long to reply! I've been having to use my phone to check on here, we had a power outage and then life carried on.

Anyways... this is my first AU, and I was a little ify on it, but I'm liking it so far. Lol.

I'm glad that you enjoy my version of young dumbledore. I know that not many people are keen on reading it, but I think I did a pretty good job, and I'm happy you agree. I always thought of Aberforth as passionate, and bitter. Not to mention, a 15 year old who has lost his mother will be emotionally volatile, and we all know that he kinda blamed Albus for everything, so why should it only start after her death? In all honesty, I'm going to let Dumbledore figure this out. (AKA, I don't know the ending.) Lol. I hope it doesn't turn out that he lets grindelwald continue to manipulate him, but who knows. Thanks for teh review, I'll be looking at yours soon. Promise. +]

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Review #16, by LilyLou In the Still of Night

5th December 2013:
Hi! Here with the Review Tag for QTR!

The beginning was very catching, I must admit. I was immediately interested in what the whole ticking and tocking was about. Therefore, I read on with interest, not boredom, and that is extremely important.

Ariana, to me, is a subject that is so lightly touched that I would be extremely challenged to write about her and Aberforth, let alone young Albus. So this is extremely impressive, and is definitely promising for you to place in the What If challenge! Because I thought this was really good!

The way you wrote Aberforth was just as I always expected him to be like in his youth. How he caught Albus going into Ariana's room. He seems very aware and I always felt as though Aberforth was the older brother, even though Albus was. Aberthforth just seemed to have more of an independent and responsible character.

I love how you made Ariana seem sweet and innocent in her sleep, and how Albus was fond of her, and often worried about her. I thought it was extremely convincing and sweet, showing that Albus as a teenager had a heart, even though some of the events we were told about through Aunt Muriel seemed to be a little sketchy, as well as the stories from Rita Skeeter.

Amazing job!


Author's Response: Thank you! I've always wanted to do a piece like this, and the What If prompt I got was the perfect excuse.

The tick tock part took some work, but I'm glad it paid off in the end. The idea was to make sure that people made it past the first 500 words. Lol. +]

I was worried my Aberforth came off as too moody, but I'm glad you enjoyed him. I tried to play up the brothers in a tough time thing as much as possible.

Thanks for the review! Glad you liked it!

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