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25 Reviews Found

Review #1, by CambAngst Evidence

28th September 2015:
Hi, Tori!

You know, I don't care for this Kendall Green kid. Nope, don't care for him one bit. I'm glad that Devlin has at least made a firm determination as to who set him up. Once again, Andrew is sticking by Devlin's side. He's a good egg, Andrew. I just hope that doesn't get him killed in the end.

"You were supposed to be loyal to me," he said, while his chest pounded and his ears rang and his wolf screamed for domination. -- An interesting sentiment. I get these shades of Voldemort from Devlin every once in a while. The need to control and be in control.

"Don't touch me!" He said, and his gaze rose to look at her now. His hands were curled into fists, blood locked away from his whitening knuckles, pounding amply in his chest. "I don't like people touching me when I haven't said they could!" -- There's a flash of the old Devlin. Anger and fear taking away his self control. We don't see that often anymore. I wonder whether Snape would approve or disapprove? It's one of those rare moments where he's not playing the dangerous game.

Instead she seemed simply taken aback - an expression that appeared almost like realization filtering across her face. -- In that moment, I imagine that she briefly saw the wounded child and not the carefully crafted echo of a monster.

Dumbledore watched him with patience; infuriating because of the way it acknowledged his awareness of Devlin's internal struggle. -- I love the way you always capture the layers of subtle games that are being played whenever Devlin and Dumbledore share a scene. Subtle, but no less important.

Wow. Snape to the rescue. Sort of. Kind of. OK, maybe not as much as Devlin would like to believe, but it at least spared him from having to set a series of events in motion involving Kendall Green. I really liked the little drama that plays out between Snape and McGonagall. It's so rare in fan fiction to see any sort of situation where the two are portrayed as evenly matched or, as in this case, Snape has an edge when it comes to understanding a situation.

Devlin recovers pretty well after McGonagall is dismissed. One small thing I should point out is that it was a little difficult to follow who was speaking when Devlin asks about the letter M. I think it would help if you moved the words "Devlin did not move" into a new sentence starting the next paragraph.

"Because I thought he was my friend, but he never really was." -- Once again, Devlin manages to come up with a near-perfect answer for the situation. In an odd way -- whether or not he meant to -- I think he just gave Dumbledore exactly the information he was looking for. But he did it in such a way that there's really no action Dumbledore can take against Kendall Green. Except perhaps watch the boy more closely and wait for him to mess up on his own.

Ooh! Dumbledore's parting words weren't half bad, either. Once again, the chess match comes to a stalemate.

Maria has such an effect on Devlin. Somehow, she leads him to take the risk of trying to be normal, which is not trivial if you're Devlin. By managing to survive and reclaim something of her childhood, she shows him a slim hope that he could possibly do the same. Part of him doesn't believe it, part of him certainly doesn't want to. But I think there's a small part of him that thinks it's possible and she helps that part to come to the surface on occasion.

Speaking of chess matches, there's also the ongoing exchange of half-truths and carefully selected bits of information between Harry and Geoffrey. I think the both learn a thing or two they find surprising here. More Geoffrey than Harry, I guess.

Another beautifully vivid mind sequence shared between Snape and Devlin. Hmmnn... I wonder whether Snape knows about the Horcruxes in your timeline? Knows about them or at least suspects that they exist. His question certainly seems to suggest it.

Aww! One thing I've always loved from Deathly Hallows -- the reason that I will always believe in the Harry/Ginny pairing in spite of all the reasons that people have for why they don't like it -- is the imagine of Harry watching her footprints on the Marauders Map. Again, we see him keeping tabs on someone he cares about.

I saw a few little typos:

-- He did not recall his scarce years of childhood, and he was certain the behavior of a six year would be ill-received in such instances. -- six-year-old?

-- "I am always so pleased to see how much you care about your Slytherin's, Severus." -- Slytherins

-- If looks could kill, Devlin was fairly certain Severus' would be an unpleasant, drawn-out poison. -- Severus's

-- Of course, that hadn't been what Severus' had dared him to ask -- no apostrophe after Severus

Neat chapter! I'm hoping that you're building toward a major moment involving Harry and Devlin. The two of them have been rather distant in this story. Until next time...

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Review #2, by CambAngst Exceptions

21st August 2015:
Hi, Tori! The timing of your swap was so fortunate. I was having a hard time finding motivation to bang out some reviews tonight for the Gryffindor Review NaNo and you gave me a reason to get in gear. Please pardon me for a moment while I keep score:

GryCReMo (Review #23)

I think Devlin on Calming Draught is my favorite thing you've come up with in a long time. It's a little like he's drunk, only more age-appropriate. So many things that he would never normally divulge are making their way into Snape's waiting ears. Also into the minds of your eager readers.

"I torture myself a lot, too," he said and he could feel Snape's narrowed eyes on the back of his head. -- OK, this wasn't really new information, per se, but I think it's good that Devlin actually acknowledges it at some level.

Such unnecessary knowledge you have placed in a man you mean to dominate,his wolf growled. He felt a thrill up his spine that he always got when their minds worked together; the wolf pulling from his vocabulary, his brain pulling from the wolf's perspective to understand what he meant. He always felt most alive when he was that boyish wolf. -- I love this passage! I love Devlin in general in this chapter, but I really love the psychology of this line and the joy that Devlin sometimes finds in his duality. Such a different take on lycanthropy compared to Remus. Then again, Remus never saw his wolf as anything other than a dangerous, savage parasite.

"I like you. Just shut up and think before you get yourself hurt, Andrew." -- It's always interesting to see the things that count as acts of kindness in Slytherin House. I think Devlin does genuinely like Andrew.

"Let us just consider it a curiosity of mine, and a payment of yours." -- I'm fascinated to see what Snape discovers about this new potion. If someone is trying to poison Devlin, then they're playing a dangerous game on a level that not even Devlin has contemplated. Killing the Dark Lord's favorite toy would have to lead to a most horrific death.

It's always fascinating to see Devlin's interpretations of other people, what he makes of them. Since Voldemort is the yardstick that he uses to measure people in most instances, it's kind of ironic that this half-blood prefect is someone who seems to fair pretty well by that standard.

When Devlin talks with Dumbledore it's a close second to his conversations with Snape in terms of how interesting it can be. Both of them are masters of the art of keeping their own secrets and the art of teasing out the secrets of others. I liked the extra effort that Devlin puts into trying to appear and act "normal" in front of Dumbledore. Even with Devlin's considerable skills, it seems that Dumbledore is able to wrest the upper hand away from him. The dueling club is certainly an interested idea. I sort of agree with Devlin on this one. Seems like there's an above-average chance that someone who isn't Devlin might get hurt. Although it's also possible that Devlin will choose not to put the full array of his skills on display. That would be giving away a lot.

The scene with Harry watching Devlin on the Marauder's Map was warm and touching. Since the horcrux hunt in the tent presumably never happened in your world, this is a pretty close substitute.

You did a great job with the dueling club scene. You paced it really well so that everything built up to the grand finale. And I'm obviously not talking about the duel, although that was nicely done, as well. Devlin was holding back, which I would have expected from him. But when it came to the moment where he had to make the most important choice, he makes the choice that he knows Voldemort will approve of. Even though that choice will only serve to make his life harder, he believes it will keep him alive. So there's really no choice for him.

I saw a couple of things that I think were typos:

Half the time, when people called him Mr. Potter, his reflex turn was simply because he associated it with Harry. -- "his reflex was to turn"?

Last night he had slept, dreamlessly, in what must have been months. -- "for the first time in what must have been"?

Great job! Thanks for the swap.

Author's Response: Hello! I am TRYING to respond to all my reviews. O.o

I enjoy writing him on calming draughts. If you recall he had one during his initial stay with Harry - it tasted like cherries. I also really enjoyed his wolf here, and thought it showcased well how his wolf might have helped him with Voldemort as a child - no matter what they had him drugged on, or spelled, obligated or confounded (all things I can realistically see Voldemort using), his wolf would have remained impervious to such things and therefore been the most logical and informed part of Devlin's brain.

It is definitely odd writing Slytherin's. They have to remain true to age/experience, but also have this underlying personality that makes them see the world as something to manipulate and be manipulated by. Niceness is therefore almost an awkward affair in which someone is always sticking their neck out and acknowledging that they're risking themselves, because that is how they see the world.

I imagine Snape is fascinated too - a form of potion making he's never seen before. I was just watching a marathon of House M.D. and thinking that Snape is probably a lot like House in terms of potions and puzzles. I'm sure he's wondering equally about the potions brewing process as he is wondering who is behind the potion itself.

Devlin has said before that sometimes Voldemort made him better without even knowing it. I think Voldemort (and his environment) probably taught Devlin that blood means very little when one is worried about how much someone can hurt you physically or socially. Someone who can take it all, is probably someone who can dish it out as well, and I think Devlin probably knows that better than most.

"I sort of agree with Devlin on this one. Seems like there's an above-average chance that someone who isn't Devlin might get hurt." I like how you put that. LOL. I think Dumbledore is doing two things: to Devlin he is extending a level of trust, and also illustrating that he doesn't always need to consult Harry (and therefore, couldn't Devlin tell him things that he wouldn't NEED to pass along to Harry?). But also, I see this as a jab at Voldemort himself.

I'm glad I did well with the dueling scene. I really struggled with it!

Thanks for the awesome review, Dan!

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Review #3, by seriouslyaddicted Exceptions

1st August 2015:
Nice ending of this chapter! I think everybody's curiosity just went sky high after that ;)
Actually i'm reading the story of Devlin for some weeks now, and i really love it! Good job of making it so intense most of the time..even when it's often about Devlin's thoughts and emotions, it never gets dull or boring! I'd love to read further and i'm checking on it every now and then :) so hopefully the story continues soon!

Author's Response: Wow! This review made me smile, because I didn't trade for it. :D

I am glad you're really enjoying the story. I promise the plot is opening back up soon. :)

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Review #4, by CambAngst Something Synthetic

28th June 2015:
Hi, Tori! I'm here for our swap.

I know that Devlin's small conceits are part and parcel to his character and he comes by them honestly, but they're also frustrating.

Harry did not understand; Devlin had Snape under control. Devlin had weapons. -- Sure, Dev. Whatever. We shall soon see who's controlling who.

He felt like that little lost boy as he stared at it all; certain it should have experienced the same level of change he had. -- You really nailed it with this one. I remember coming home from college to visit, feeling surprised that things hadn't changed much at all. And I wasn't even surrounded by murderous psychopaths at college. Devlin has changed so much -- been through so much -- since he left home to go to Hogwarts. Normality must be kind of jarring for him.

I love the way that you threaded Devlin's newfound knowledge of James and Lily's death through this chapter. It impacts his every interaction with Harry. Knowing is such a huge thing for Devlin and now he knows this very meaningful thing that Harry does not. It seems like it makes him feel powerful in one way buy wary and almost a little vulnerable in another.

"Hi, Mum." If someone at school dared to call him that, there would be blood all over them and Devlin's fist. He marveled at the fact that he had become so accustomed to her calling him that, that embarrassment no longer made his cheeks flush. She came over and ruffled his hair, planting a kiss into his scalp - an area that was hard to guard against her affection. -- I'm pretty sure that was my favorite paragraph of the whole chapter. I love the imagery and the feeling.

I really liked Emma's response to Devlin's reasoning for not becoming friends with Andrew. It's age-appropriate, which means a little simplistic in this case, but she also has a good point. Devlin can't go through four years of school isolating himself from everyone. Harry was putting his friends at the same basic risk, and that worked out pretty well in the end.

Hey, it's our old friend the wolf! I really love these scenes where you play with the dichotomy of Devlin and his wolf. Watching the wolf struggle to function in "the boy's world" is both entertaining and instructive.

It's pretty obvious by mid-chapter that something is very wrong with Devlin. Whatever's wrong also seems to be getting worse. His nightmare about killing Harry and Emma is eerily reminiscent of the scene in OotP where Harry was seeing through Nagini's eyes.

Harry's gift was pretty awesome and it says a lot about the near-term future that Harry sees for Devlin. I liked that he didn't bother with anything like an emergency portkey. Devlin would never use it anyway. But the "wizard survival kit" could come in handy in a lot of ways. Now the potions kit was another interesting touch, especially the part where he notes that Voldemort doesn't encourage him to take an interest in it. Duly noted...

I always feel strange when I'm writing a review and I come to the part of a chapter where Snape and Devlin are interacting. I feel like I should write more about it, because I enjoy the two of them immensely. But I never seem to be able to, because nothing I can say about them seems adequate. It's such a sublime pleasure to see these two magnificent characters spar and dance. It's even better, I think, when we get to see it from Snape's point of view. The last half of the story was a treat.

I'll say a bit about Geoffrey. It's fairly clear now how the curse that Voldemort used to tie him to Devlin works. I like Geoffrey's through process here. He has a small edge over Devlin, one that actually helps him to keep the boy safe. And he's not about to five that up.

The last scene introduced so many new possibilities, it had my head spinning. A synthetic ingredient, whose effectiveness seems tied, in some way, to either Voldemort's magic or the magic of the person who synthesized it. It does seem very unnatural, and the possibility that Voldemort himself was unaware of it means that it's possible that whoever the Dark Lord commissioned to create the potion betrayed him after a fashion.

"Of course you will, because you have chosen to play a very dangerous game. Foolish boy." -- That moment when you realize that Snape knew more of what he was talking about than you imagined possible.

"And yet, you took it. How powerful you are." -- My review would be woefully incomplete if I didn't highlight the best Snape moment of the story so far.

I believe I caught a typo:

He yanked a the door, making his imagine disappear, while revealing the potions behind. -- yanked at the door

Awesome job! I really enjoyed this one!

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Review #5, by CambAngst Devlin Augustus Potter

14th May 2015:
Hi, Tori! Let's see whether work will give me time to knock this review out before my phone rings. It's always a race.

I like the way that Snape is able to get under Devlin's skin in ways that not even Voldemort can match. From a certain standpoint, Snape is actually scarier than Voldemort. Snape understands things -- emotions, motivations -- that Voldemort simply cannot.

I'm not sure exactly what Devlin's army of little clay wizards says about his psyche. Maybe it's an expression of his desire for control. Maybe he likes the idea of ordering men to fight, the way that his grandfather does. Or maybe he just likes playing with toy soldiers, as any boy his age would.

The interplay between Remus and Devlin's three facets is fascinating to watch. It seems like Devlin is wary of him, the wolf feels some affection toward him and the Little Dark One doesn't like the way Remus makes the other two feel. By the way, I noticed that this was the first chapter in ages where the name Dubhn doesn't appear at all.

I loved the way that Remus introduced Devlin's other grandfather into the conversation. Lily has been a focal point for Devlin over the past few chapters, between Voldemort's recollections of the murder and Devlin's taunting of Snape. Bringing James into the conversation rounds things out a little from my point of view. If you focus too much on Lily, it's easy for her to become more of a symbol than a person.

The scene in the Slytherin Common Room was a nice breather from the heavy, adult realities that govern most of Devlin's life. Seeing the other children marvel at his skill, and especially seeing the jealous little boy trying to save face, helps to bring the story back into Devlin's world when we've dwelled in Dubhn's world for too long.

"Maybe try to be less...demanding...and more encouraging?" -- This sounds nothing like Voldemort's approach to magic. I love the small differences.

The first time I read this, I didn't made the connection between Devlin taking Voldemort's potion and the sickness he feels the next morning. On the second read through, it's pretty glaring. Either Voldemort's new potion has some unadvertised side effects or perhaps it's even meant to subtly poison Devlin. Regardless, I wonder whether Devlin will eventually have to abandon his independence and go back to Snape. That would forge another interdependence.

I see that Devlin feeling under the weather has not escaped Snape's notice. He really does obsess over the students that he claims to like least. In the books, that always came off as a petty, mean-spirited trait. Here, you've made it much more complex.

Dumbledore hummed happily and Snape sneered... -- It's a small thing, but I love the imperturbable cheer that you've gifted Dumbledore with.

Ah, so Devlin has Snape's middle name. Fascinating. One thing I'm curious about is how Harry knew what Lily had intended to name him. I suppose he could have found out from Remus or Sirius, but it seems like the sort of thing she wouldn't necessarily have discussed with them. Throughout this story, your Harry has shown an interesting sort of quasi-camaraderie toward Snape. He seems to hold him in high regard, in spite of their past differences. I'm curious whether you're planning to expand on the connections between Harry and Snape at some point. Or perhaps it's Alexandra and Snape.

Severus had not thought he would care, but he had clutched at the card and howled with pain and justice. Emotions he had long buried had been torn to the surface. -- I love how complex and nuanced your Snape is! Brilliant!

The verbal sparring between Devlin and Snape was once again beautifully done. It's like they're having two different conversations, each of them trying to tear closely-held secrets from the other. Even as a three-year-old, Devlin had a knack for tormenting Snape over his betrayal of Lily.

I saw a few typos as I was reading:

The other clay figures, now alleys, pointed their wands... -- now alarmed?

Devlin felt a bit nauseas, probably from not getting any sleep -- nauseous

"I do sometimes wonder, Severus, what you chose to occupy your mornings with while there was not a Potter child watch so closely over your tea." -- Potter child to watch

Devlin referring to Harry and Alexandra has his parents... -- as his parents

He knew that sensation of loosing something before hed lost anything else so definitively. -- losing something

he knew was not ready to relinquish these secrets they held between them. -- he knew he was not

One last thing I wanted to highlight: You could fix that, the boy's eyes seemed to say, haunting him with memories. He slammed his door on them both. Am I correct in assuming that, in this timeline, Dumbledore has kept the truth about Snape passing the prophecy to Voldemort from Harry? Or at least Snape believes that Harry doesn't know?

Great chapter! I'm enjoying Devlin being back in "friendly" territory. Until next time...

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Review #6, by Minion of the Easter Bunny Something New

17th April 2015:
Bounce. Bounce. Bounce.

Eek! That's me caught again. I amn't really doing so well at keeping out of sight. Sigh. I just get so distracted by all these lovely stories.

I love this story so far. It's so exciting, and I want to know more and more. Unfortunately I'm a little busy at the moment, or else I would read the entire thing. Your descriptions were really impressive, they left a deep impression on me. I do like the way the words flow so neatly together. You did a hop-tastic job with that!

I loved the moment in Olivanders, where the wands were choosing their owners. The suspense and pacing there was brilliant. And I loved the descriptions about the way the wands reacted to their owners.

All in all, a brilliant piece! Great work. I'm afraid I am going to have to be off now, but have an Easter egg on me! 0

Bounce. Bounce. Bounce.

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Review #7, by CambAngst Secret Similarities

14th April 2015:
Hi! I am very hopeful that work will allow me the time to get this written up and posted. It's been quite a day.

You did a great job of writing Devlin's seizure. For a boy who normally exerts so much control over every aspect of his behavior and appearance, the sense of losing control was almost as painful as the cruciatus symptoms. Almost. Those were really horrible, as well. I also liked the way that you wove small details of what was happening in the real world -- Devlin falling onto the floor, having a potion forced down his throat, being carried -- into his seizure experience.

Reality and dream and memory consumed each other, whirling viciously and living vicariously through each other, inside of him. In moments such as this one, Devlin could never be absolutely sure wether it was a seizure or the true curse. -- That sounds like the worst kind of nightmare imaginable. Also, should be "whether".

Bit by bit -- and definitely not because Devlin wants him to -- Snape is starting to unravel some of Devlin's secrets. Or maybe Devlin does want him to, in an odd way. More on this later. I am also curious what magic Devlin felt like he was able to do that his wolf was not.

Your Dumbledore was spot on, as always. Serene, imperturbable, and seemingly a step ahead in the game that Devlin is playing. I still don't really want Devlin to completely trust him, but there are times where I find myself wishing that Devlin was a little more forthcoming. Dumbledore could certainly help, but trusting the old man can be a slippery slope.

"Did you often get obsessed over muggleborns, Severus?" -- Ooh! That was hitting below the belt. He's pushing so many of Snape's buttons on so many different levels. Just as Snape is starting to figure out Devlin, it seems that Devlin is also discovering things about Snape. It's worrying, in a way. Who's going to get who killed first?

So it seems that Devlin and Scorpius might have something more in common than their house and their near proximity to the Dark Lord. I suspected from the beginning that there might ultimately be an alliance of sorts forged here. It will be interesting to see that play out.

I really like the way that Devlin's dream about Voldemort ended. If I think about it, the Dark Lord does have certain things to fear from Devlin. Devlin has figured out more of Voldemort's secrets than Voldemort has probably given him credit for. Moreover, Devlin is like Voldemort but not like him. And that combination of similarities and differences could prove to be very unpredictable and dangerous.

The scene with Maria was really sweet. I love the way that she brings out the little boy in him, makes him feel loved and valued.

He did not want her to see him weak.

And yet, it felt so good when she did.
-- This! Also:

He wondered if she understood how preciously he protected her image of him as a normal boy. -- She and Emma give Devlin a reason to want to be Devlin instead of Dubhn.

The scene in Transfiguration class was more revealing for what Devlin was thinking than what he shared with McGonagall. I think this is the first time you've clearly spelled out how what the relationship between Devlin, Dubhn and the Sharpness really is and how it came to be. Then there was the other werewolf boy. I'm wondering if he's the same boy that Devlin bit while he was being held captive.

The last scene with Snape was brilliantly done. I love watching these two spar. But this conversation actually went beyond sparring! Was that a hint of vulnerability on Snape's part? A willingness to reveal just a bit of himself to bargain for more insight into Devlin? On one level, it's very un-Snape-like. On another, perhaps he's realized some of the mistakes he made with Harry? Knowing and understanding Devlin could be critical to Snape's end-game with Voldemort. If he discovers what it is about Devlin that kept him alive, it could be key to his revenge.

"Yes," Snape said, the word quiet but somehow rebellious. "Yes, that is correct." He had rearranged his face so that it did not betray him and now he leaned forward too. His hooked nose was less than an inch from Devlin's face. "I am exceedingly good at torturing myself, Devlin. It is an art I know better than potion-making." -- It's tempting to believe that Snape could be a little facetious here, but I'm sure he's not. Every time he looked at Harry, he was torturing himself, living his penance for what his desire for power cost him. Devlin wouldn't be that much different, I suppose.

I'm pretty sure I've figured out the part of Devlin that's missing. It's the part of him that's a normal boy. But we shall see how that plays out. In the meantime, it looks like we'll be treated to a lot more conversations between Devlin and Snape! I'm gleeful!

I saw a few typos while I was reading:

sensation that would spread out from the where the original curse had hit him -- from where the

so different from his father that Devlin feels almost-alright until he turned to look at him -- Devlin felt

It retracted from his perfect resemblance just enough -- detracted

"Tell me more about this missing part of you," Snape said, eying his critically, his dark eyes an endless tunnel -- eyeing him critically

Snape looked at Devlin alternatively as if he were a germ-riddle tissue -- germ-riddled

Snapes palms came to rest on his desk and he lifted his hight onto them -- his height

This was a great, great chapter! So many things happened and so many neat interactions and thoughts and revelations. I loved it!

Author's Response: Oooh, you're early!

I'm not sure why I enjoy writing Devlin's seizures so much, but I do. I suppose it is something about a lack of landscape and supplying all the information through sensation, which I love.

Clearly Devlin knows a great deal about Snape. You can imagine what Voldemort might have said on the topic of him (and left out). But Devlin has been hinting at it for awhile, with his "you have the power to make Harry hate you" comment when he returned, to his jabs at Snape liking muggleborns. Every time Snape steps closer, Devlin brings it out like a knife.

Hmm - I thought it would be clear why his wolf couldn't help since we ended with the Killing Curse dream last chapter and that's what caused this seizure. When he killed the Auror the sharpness wanted to be there - to push forward and take the experience away from him - but Devlin knew he couldn't, because the wolf couldn't do the magic.

Scorpius will be interesting...

We already know that Voldemort sees only what he can comprehend. Right now he sees Devlin as himself and therefore that they share the same (nonexistent in his mind), weaknesses. But instead Devlin has known several times in his life how just being near Voldemort has made him unlike him. When you see what terror over death does, and you have been close to it so many times, the fear begins to see less valuable. Perhaps being the one to kill someone even took some of the fear away.

I wish Devlin would stop being so sure Dumbledore assumes he is like Tom and begin to see how Voldemort had corrupted his perception of other people. But that is sort of typical of abusers, right? The whole "they wouldn't understand. You're not like them. We're like each other. I understand you. They would just hate you." etc. etc.

It was SO MUCH FUN to write Tom Riddle in his dream. Glad to see I did it well. :)

Maria was a nice change in the tension of this chapter, although I think Devlin took this sudden illness a little too lightly.

The boy who Voldemort framed as Devlin was delivered dead at the Ministry shortly after Devlin's kidnapping. While Devlin didn't kill him, he did bite him (without a choice). So no, that boy is dead. But there is war, and I figure there must be more than one child bitten in a time of war when a Dark Lord is purposefully using werewolves as soldiers.

We are still missing some information about Snape and Devlin. I think Snape is strongly suspecting Voldemort has told Devlin that Snape is responsible, in a sense, for the Potter's death. And that he begged for Lily's life. Knowing that the boy knows but still desiring to keep him alive (probably for some variation of the same reason he did with Harry), he has to decide to dismiss Devlin or confront him. Because Devlin is going to use this against him. With that in mind, I think he thought that small reveal of vulnerability was an advantage in the situation.

No, I do not think Snape is being facetious at all.

:D Glad you liked it!

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Review #8, by CambAngst Of Snow and Stillness

27th February 2015:
Hello, hello! You were definitely back on your game with this chapter. You flexed that amazing ability you have to add texture and mood to the story by using Devlin's pondering of related topics, the mental excursions he takes beyond the immediate line of narrative. It's a fantastic technique.

I love seeing Devlin and Snape spar. Snape understands but he doesn't quite understand. He knows Voldemort as well as anyone, but he's never been in Devlin's situation. He's never been mixed up in Voldemort's head, so he doesn't fully understand the thin line that Devlin walks. I daresay Snape also has too much faith in Dumbledore, considering how easy it was for Voldemort to snatch Devlin out from underneath Dumbledore's nose. From Devlin's standpoint, there's really no more reason to fully trust Dumbledore than there is to fully trust Voldemort.

Quite a contrast then to Harry, who I think Devlin has come to trust completely in most regards. It feels to me like Devlin doesn't trust himself around Harry. He doesn't know what to make of unconditional love. He feels like he can't risk the chance that fully embracing what Harry's offering will turn him into that "foolish boy" that Voldemort admonishes him not to be. Devlin can't risk becoming normal. It's really sad, because he was making such good progress in the last story. Everything since he's arrived at Hogwarts feels line one, long setback with the exception of his friendship with Maria.

There was a bit of Devlin that wanted terribly to crumble before Harry; to let Harry decipher the riddles that trapped him, confining him to a cage he feared to escape. That part wanted Harry to find the convergence at which the real Devlin was - to set him free. -- I feel kind of cheesy quoting that passage because it's the one you used in your chapter summary, but it is the most powerful thing in the first half of the chapter. It seems to perfectly capture Devlin's mixed motivations.

In front of Harry they had lost all taste; a means to an end that was only necessary because of someone that was not there. -- This was a really awesome sensory metaphor. I'm in awe.

Harry hasn't figured Devlin completely out, but he's gotten a few things right. The basic respect that he shows Devlin and Devlin's ability to deal with Voldemort obviously went a long way. The fact that he didn't press Devlin about things that Devlin was obviously evading was another good move on his part. Somehow I don't think Alexandra will be quite so understanding. Then there's the matter of Emma...

I love the way Devlin handled himself when he got back to the Slytherin table. Maybe this is the beginning of new alliances for him. At a minimum, he's found himself a new adversary.

I find it kind of strange that Dumbledore wouldn't have ordered a thorough search of Devlin's dorm room. You know, the sort of thing that would have turned up a trunk with an illicit portkey in it, keyed to the incantation for casting the dark mark. Then again, I can't even count this as Dumbledore's worst failure as the headmaster of Hogwarts. Maybe not even in the top 5. ;)

Everything is safe beneath the snow -- Another really neat metaphor. The real Devlin -- if Devlin even knows who that is -- feels safer beneath Devlin's icy, emotionless facade.

The narrative that you mixed in with Devlin's reunion with Maria was awesome. Perfect mood compliment to their conversation. The conversation itself was beautifully written. I feel like I should write a lot about it in this review, but I'm at a loss. It was perfect. She comes so close to melting that exterior of his. Only his strategic retreat prevents it. I hope for his sake that he doesn't ignore her.

Lastly, there's the dream about killing Damian. I'll reiterate that I mostly believe that Devlin killed him, although you've left the details just blurry enough that I wouldn't be completely surprised if he didn't do it. I love the way you write the sensations of magic. You make it such a physical, visceral thing.

Awesome chapter! I enjoyed it thoroughly!

Author's Response: I'll be reviewing yours today, but I have about ten minutes and thought I would reply to your review since I noted a few things I wanted to clarify.

I'm glad to hear I was on my game. I had this whole chapter written out for awhile now, but it was purely the narrative and present situations and lacked the exact thing you say is one of my signatures. I fixed most of it on Saturday. :)

I love writing Snape and Devlin. Somedays, with the other version of this story still in my head I get caught between the fact that I've made it farther in this story but not quite far enough in certain parts. In the original version Snape already had a lot more play time. So I have to remind myself of what you know and don't know.

No, there really isn't any reason to trust Dumbledore, although I don't think trusting him even occurred to Devlin, nor really his neglect of security. Right now, Devlin still sees Voldemort has too powerful to think someone, except maybe Harry, could protect him. Devlin's life hasn't been filled with Dumbledore-inspiring stories, after all.

I think Harry played this really well, but Devlin also played him a bit, too.

I think you're just trying to make yourself feel better, if you think Devlin didn't kill the Auror. Sorry. He did it. This will not be a plot twist of mine. Devlin is capable of all the dark magic his Grandfather is. And his father, if we are honest.

Don't feel cheesy - I was so proud of fitting in the title of the story into that quote! :D :D :D

I had not even though of the word/taste quote being a sensory metaphor. You always make me feel ten times better about my skill than I ever think of my own writing.

Burning the bread seemed like a sort of childish move, although Devlin's strategy is more mature. He is a conglomeration of childishness, brilliancy, and forced maturity.

I think Devlin has the inkling that he has to choose soon - that changing gets harder as one gets older. That parts of you have to cast aside and frozen instead of just sidestepped. We are less fluid in our personalities as we grow.

Ah, I'm relieved to hear I did well with Maria's scene. I was terrified - there is really no way to make something like that perfect, because so much counts on it. I hope I made it clear he was using mind magic almost subconsciously.

On somewhat of a related side note: I never understood how someone like Voldemort could ever be charming if he did not understand peoples motives (the little boy at the orphanage didn't seem very charming, for instance), which would be difficult being so emotionally detached. Then I wondered if maybe he had discovered a way to understand, without empathy. Empathy allows us to put ourselves in someone else's shoes - with empathy comes the ability for remorse. But Voldemort did have not have remorse and so did not have empathy. I'm not saying Devlin is the same, but there are components of Devlin that are like his Grandfather.

I loved the last scene. I wrote it in under an hour right before I uploaded. :)

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Review #9, by CambAngst Convergence Riddle: Dangerous Games

27th January 2015:
Hi! I'm here for our swap. I just wanted to start by saying that you really made my day today. Ear to ear smiles all around!

Wow, this chapter had amazing intensity. I wasn't sure that you'd be able to keep the level up after Voldemort and Devlin return from the attack on Hogsmeade. In the first part of the chapter Devlin stuns an Auror, is attacked by Greyback, sets Greyback's clothes on fire, transforms to escape, sees his father and smoke-travels away with Voldemort. Most people could not find another gear after a series of events like that. But you? You turned it up to 11, so to speak. That's what I love about your stories, you always have something in reserve to finish a chapter strong!

The attach scene was amazingly vivid. I could feel the heart-pounding adrenaline that Devlin was running on. You did an awesome job with all of the physical details that showed how hard he was pushing himself, how afraid he was of failing in his mission or getting caught.

Greyback was a terrifying piece of work. I liked the way that you didn't have him instantly recognize Devlin as a member of his "family". It made things much more gripping to wonder for a moment whether Greyback would just try to kill him. Probably the only thing in the entire chapter I would offer a suggestion on was the choice of the word "creator" that Greyback uses to describe Remus. It felt too clinical, too civilized. Greyback is a wild creature, for the most part. I was thinking something like "your alpha" or even "your father" would be more apropos.

I adored the image of Devlin igniting Greyback's clothes. I really can't see enough bad things happen to Greyback. Speaking of which, I noticed Voldemort asking Devlin to explain to him who the "crazy man" was. Could be bad tidings for Greyback.

"You must teach me that," he said, his breath a whisper. His heart was still in his chest, his throat dry, his skin tingling. -- I don't know that there's ever a perfect thing to say when you're dealing with Voldemort. He can turn pretty much anything against you if he wants to. But that line was pretty close to perfect. ;)

Yes! I knew it! I knew that Voldemort would send him back. This is just one more way that Voldemort puts his "ownership" of Devlin on display, one more way to shove it in Harry's face. He's so unconcerned about Devlin's true loyalties that he intentionally sends Devlin right back into the stronghold of his greatest enemy.

Snape was beautifully in character, as always. He's doing what he can to help Devlin, but he can't come close to hiding his frustration with how dangerously Devlin is living. If there's one point Snape is making that I really wish Devlin would figure out, it's that even by following "the path of least resistance", Devlin is still making a choice.

Lastly, I absolutely loved the comparisons you drew out between Voldemort and Dumbledore in this chapter.

Dumbledore was imposing, in a soft way; like a velvet covered knife, hidden between layers of robes and coalescing magic. -- I've had that feeling many times, myself. To someone in Devlin's position -- or the position Harry was in as a teenager -- the only difference between Voldemort and Dumbledore is that Dumbledore has better window dressing for his uncompromising agenda. The verbal sparring between the two of them was beautifully written. It's amusing how a character as formidable as Snape is reduced to a third wheel to their conversation.

I noticed a few small typos as I was reading:

He swerved into another alley. In his mind he pictured were he had entered and ever turn he had taken. -- where he had entered and every turn

He was must be running parallel to the town. -- He must be

Devlin could here Snape shift behind him, his breathing, which had been even, stalling for the barest second. -- could hear Snape

Awesome chapter! I enjoyed it thoroughly. Thank you for the swap and for all of the love you lavished on my story today!

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Review #10, by CambAngst Impressions Left and to be Made

20th December 2014:
Hi! I was excited to see your new chapter up!

Devlin's monthly transformation seemed fairly low-key in Voldemort's company. The Dark Lord didn't seem to have any issues with providing Devlin with everything he needed to make the experience more bearable. In a really strange way, Voldemort was almost gentle. Like he wrapped another layer or two of velvet around the knife. I liked the euphemism, "the untested aspect". Lycanthropy is really the one thing that differentiates Devlin from Voldemort at this point. I guess that's one reason why neither one of them really choose to fixate on it too much. It doesn't confer a tactical advantage to either side in the game that they're playing.

Ooh, I'm so excited! We're finally getting around to dealing with the horcruxes. I thought you did a great job addressing a challenging topic. Since the entire first novel focused on Devlin and his "recovery" from his captivity, there wasn't a lot of room to take on a subplot that size. In turn, that left you with a gap to close in the sequel. The idea that Harry abandoned the hunt as an activity too dangerous for a family man was a sensible way to go about it. Now that Harry's coming to grips with the fact that Devlin will never really be free as long as Voldemort is alive, it makes sense that Dumbledore would begin to redirect him back to dealing with the root cause of Voldemort's immortality.

"There is something he's not telling us," she said, "probably because he isn't quite sure...but still, he's hiding something, Harry."

Harry shrugged.

"With Dumbledore, there always is."
-- I see they're both familiar with the man. ;) For a character who hasn't had a lot of screen time, I think you have a really good handle on Dumbledore. Even in the first novel, I could feel him occasionally pulling strings in the background. I get a feeling he's about to come closer to the forefront.

The idea of Harry and Alexandra sharing a night of passion after stealing a horcrux from Gringotts was awesome. There's something about it that's perfectly Harry. And then it seems that she broke his heart. And then she found out she was pregnant. It's a timeless Harry Potter fan fic love story.

Awesome! Finally, we get more of Alexandra's back story. Most of it, I think, unless there are some holes that I'm not thinking of right now. If she was looking for work as a Curse Breaker at age 16, it's obvious that she inherited quite a bit of her father's brilliance. Also his take-no-prisoners approach to life. Thank goodness her mother was there to temper Voldemort's influence with a healthy dose of maternal protectiveness. Alexandra seems to have come away with the best of both parents.

They were fighting for the same thing and that thing was even more important now. She would keep him safe by reigning in that recklessness just a bit. -- Most of my favorite romantic Harry stories have an element of this. Somebody has to slow the guy down and get him to stop throwing himself in front of curses all the time.

I have a question. The answer might be forthcoming, but I figured I'd ask anyway. Is Natalie still alive? Still in hiding?

Anyway, the grandmother-grandson interaction was really sweet. She's obviously fond of the boy, since she was willing to put aside her dislike of magic for him. And the big reveal at the end of the section was really well done. For some reason -- maybe just the fact that I won't think Voldemort would have sullied himself if she was a filthy muggle -- I had assumed Natalie was a witch. Still, the way that she reveals the wand had a lot of gravity to it. The bigger revelation was the fact that Natalie came from a Death Eater family, one that tried to leave the fold. Alexandra is a shining example of how your ancestry doesn't matter nearly as much as what you choose to make of your life. Hopefully Devlin internalizes that lesson at some point.

Hmmnnn. So I enjoyed Devlin's verbal sparring with Bellatrix. It's always fun to see him get the upper hand on her. At the same time, I'm curious what she's playing at. She must realize by now that Voldemort will never abide her harming Devlin in any way. I'm sure she feels very jealous of Devlin and the special bond he shares with her master. You've got my brain spinning between this encounter and Greyback's forthcoming appearance. Is there a chance that Bellatrix would try to use Greyback to eliminate someone she views as a rival for her master's attention?

Ugh. I'm not encouraged by the fact that Devlin is now running from Aurors in his dreams instead of to them. Then again, there probably isn't much an Auror could do to protect him from Voldemort.

"Morsmordre." -- Oh, boy. Looks like Devlin might be going on a raid soon. Things are really going downhill quickly.

I saw a couple of small typos as I was reading:

He stumbled to the table to join her, wishing this drunken feeing hanging about him actually had any guilty actions behind it. -- feeling hanging

She face still made it seem as though she would enjoy tearing him to pieces, but her eyes were like they had always been and though he did not know what it was they were, he knew it offered him a small fraction of protection from her other-wise brutal nature. -- Her face

This was a wonderful chapter, as always. You're drawing Devlin tighter and tighter into Voldemort's clutches. I'm really excited to see what happens next! Happy Holidays and thanks for the swap!

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Review #11, by Shadeslayer813 Battling with Fate

2nd December 2014:
Great chapter can't wait for the next!

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Review #12, by CambAngst Battling with Fate

1st December 2014:
Hi! I'm here for our swap!

Poor Devlin. I don't think he has much of a chance of really coming to terms with what he's done. Not in his present company, at least. Voldemort is simply about doing. Coming to terms with consequences is something for lesser beings to worry about. He's right and McGonagall's also right. There's no going back, there's only acknowledging the change and learning to deal with the consequences.

You know what just dawned on me? I just realized that one of the oddest experiences I've had through reading your story is seeing Voldemort in the daytime. In the books and especially in the movies, Voldemort always appears in the dark of night. With the exception of the final confrontation with Harry, I don't think he ever appears in the same scene with the sun. So to envision him casually reading a newspaper over breakfast is a peculiar image, indeed.

Wow. Devlin's whole approach to Voldemort has changed. Somewhat by necessity, I suppose, but nevertheless he's playing an incredibly dangerous game now. The sort of familiarity he displays toward the Dark Lord, the conversational way he speaks to him... none of Voldemort's followers would dare. I don't know exactly how to feel about this, but obviously it's working well enough to keep Devlin alive.

Ooh! I absolutely love the subtle game of wordplay between Harry and Geoffrey. Geoffrey is able to tell Harry exactly what he needs -- but doesn't want -- to know.

The scene inside Voldemort's memory of killing James and Lily was really well done. I didn't like reading it, but that was for all the right reasons. I did like some of Devlin's reactions while he was inside the memory, but it kills me inside to see the way that Devlin was forced to cover his tracks once he's expelled from the pensieve. I have this horrible feeling like he's losing more and more of himself to this identity he's had to assume to survive. Will he be able to find himself again if he ever manages to return to Harry and Alexandra?

I loved Harry's rumination on how his children changed him. I could relate to all of it. Maybe not directly to the part about Devlin being taken, but I could definitely relate to all of the sentiments. It was really sad to read about the effect that Devlin's most recent kidnapping has had on Emma. Poor kid!

Interesting! So Harry never went on the horcrux hunt in your timeline? It seems as though he perhaps had the chance to do so, but declined. I hope we find out a lot more about how Harry's later years of school unfolded in your world.

I don't know what I found more unnerving, Devlin's nightmare or Voldemort's reaction to it. Actually, I do know. Voldemort's reaction wins, hands down. My hat is off to you for that particular way you write the Dark Lord that makes him very nearly human yet so far from it.

You just keep coming at me with round after round of this odd, running conversation between Voldemort and Devlin. He could feel the edge of the knife slicing through the velvet under which it hid. -- No kidding! It's almost as though Devlin is daring Voldemort to kill him.

"I am hurt that you think I would risk your life thus. I have not been experimenting on an adult, Devlin." -- Blank. I had other things I meant to say about this section, but now my brain is just blank. Holy Toledo...

OK, I did not see this coming. Not at all. So Voldemort is going to get into politics? And use Devlin to reinforce his relationship-by-marriage with Harry in order to make this happen? Did not see that coming at all. My mind is sort of blown. I think I might need to withhold judgment for a chapter or two before I comment on this.

Ah, my darling Astoria! I was wondering whether we might see her in this story, or whether she was married to Draco at all in your timeline. She does make an excellent informant for Harry at this stage of the game. She's lost her husband and she must realize that her son will eventually be killed. Voldemort is most likely saving him so that his death can occur at the moment it will have the greatest impact. At the moment it will send the most effective message. I do hope we see more of Astoria.

So your editing was rough in this chapter. I highlighted a number of typos, more than I have enough characters left for. I'll PM them to you.

This chapter was jaw-dropping. So much new information mixed with familiar scenes and memories. I am really excited to see where things go next!

Author's Response: That's actually an interesting observation about Voldemort and daylight! I had not really thought of it, but it is true! I think Voldemort is attempting some psychological strategy with Devlin - mimicking the home environment he's been in, distancing him from the camp so as to distance him from all the conclusions he may have been 'fed' (because Voldemort believes Devlin is his) about his time there. He's meddling with the line that divides Devlin and Dubhan.

I really enjoyed writing the scene with Geoffrey! :)

Voldemort's memory was probably my favorite scene to write recently. I've had the idea in the works for ages (Devlin had the knowledge already in the sequel to this) but I had been trying to figure out where best to place it. It sort of illustrates that no matter how much Voldemort makes an attempt to be relatively 'nice', he can't help himself; he likes to see people hurt. In some ways, he is just as pleased that Devlin managed to (falsely) not be upset as he is displeased that he didn't get to hurt him. In some ways, Devlin covering may inevitably lead to Voldemort trying harder and harder to get the reactions he can't help but want. After all, even Voldemort is afraid of death - yet in the face of Death, Devlin feels a calm sort of defiance. To think of how Voldemort perceives that, is where I sort of see how this could escalate.

You will really enjoy the next chapter. It mostly reveals Alexandra, but also Harry through her. :)

Voldemort is creepy, but I had to remember to be true to him. In Riddle and Rescue we get into his head a few times and Voldemort admits to watching him in his sleep, because it is the only time he screams and it is a half-satification that he knows there is SOME WAY in which he is able to torture him.

Devlin is playing a dangerous game. Lets just hope he's good at it.

HAHA - yeah, I enjoyed the potion conversation too. LOL

I think you *mostly* understand, but not quite. By connecting Devlin Potter to Lord Voldemort's blood publicly, people will begin to doubt Harry Potter - the savior who is now revealed to have married Lord Voldemort's daughter. Does that make it more clear? Voldemort plan would never be to piggy back on a better man (mainly because that would admit someone was better) but to destroy him.

I can't say more than that. :)

I had fun with Astoria! :)

Yes...the editing was rough. Not sure how that happened, but I guess I didn't do a great job rereading it as I thought I had. :)

Thanks for the awesome review, Dan!

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Review #13, by CambAngst Wounds

28th November 2014:
Hi! Here for our swap, and excited to finally get to review this.

I felt so many different things for Devlin as I read the first part of this chapter. Relieved that he passed the test. Sad for the piece of his humanity that he was forced to surrender in order to survive. Somewhat sickened by the horrible reality in which a child could be forced to make such choices.

nothing, nothing, nothing -- I can't think of any other way he should want to feel in that moment. It seems to me like anything he allows himself to feel would probably destroy him, whether out of remorse or because allowing himself to give in to all those churning emotions would make him appear weak in front of Voldemort.

"Is he the only one?" -- Wow. I've seen a lot of cold lines delivered over a lifetime of reading fictional literature. I think that ranks right up there among the coldest lines I've ever read. If this whole magic thing doesn't work out, Devlin could have a great career as a mafia hitman.

Ah, Nagini! It seems like Devlin is acquainted with a number of Voldemort's horcruxes at this point, although I'm not sure whether Nagini has been made a horcrux at this point in your timeline. After Devlin reveals that he can speak to snakes, I have to imagine that he is once again firmly tangled up in Voldemort's head. In my last review, I think, I speculated that Voldemort would send Devlin back to Hogwarts just to be able to follow the experiment he's made of Devlin through to its logical conclusion. To see the boy who's tangled up in his head walk the same path that young Tom Riddle walked. I have no idea whether you're going to do that, but I'm more convinced than ever now that Voldemort wouldn't see any chance of Devlin betraying him. In fact, that might be the ultimate way for Voldemort to make his point to Harry. "I'm so confident that the boy is mine that I'll send him right back to you and Dumbles when I've finished showing him what I want him to see."

I loved the brief scene with Geoffrey. It's getting more clear to me how he and Devlin are connected. It's a lot stronger than I used to suspect.

Harry must not be thinking very clearly. Well, he's obviously not thinking very clearly if he hasn't slept in days. There's no way Voldemort is going to start a fire, draw massive amounts of attention to a camp, and still be there when the Ministry arrives. It feels very much to me as though Harry was meant to find this place.

The scene with the books was chilling, once Devlin puts the pieces together. I love the way you wrote it and especially the way you paced it. You let Devlin puzzle it out for himself, until he realizes what all of the things in the room, himself included, truly have in common.

The final scene of the chapter had this amazing, surreal quality to it. Maybe that's just because it's so easy for me to put myself in Harry's position here. So easy to imagine what it's like to charge into a scene where every parent's worst nightmare might be realized. Even though you delved into a lot of detail -- and did a great job with that, by the way -- it all still felt distant to me. Disconnected somehow. After his men find the body, I felt tightness in my chest, like grim dread. You did an awesome job with that section. I don't know what else to say.

I saw a few typos as I was reading:

He had placed the Auror's, and the few other departments he had any sway over, on high alert the moment Devlin was taken. -- Aurors

He could do things without meaning too that served to amaze everyone around him, or do things while he meant them deeply, but he could never grasp the inside workings of magic so infinitely so as to manipulate them at the slightest desire. -- without meaning to

"Look, that one isn't burnt at all," Gant, a young by steady Auror, called out, pointing toward the far end of the camp. -- young but steady

This will definitely go down as one of my favorite chapters. The short, choppy scenes were perfect for the subject matter. You paced the whole thing perfectly and the effect was amazing!

Author's Response: To be honest, the first scene really gave me trouble to write. I had managed to get so much into Devlin's head that I felt his nothingness along side him, and wanted to convey that as much as I wanted to convey the story. I'm glad it all came together.

I think Devlin had begun to see his dissociation for what it was during his time with Harry and therefore as a weakness. He is humiliated and crushed to realize he has no better method through which to cope, though. It is another reminder that he is just a child, talented as he may be. His mind protects itself like a child's.

Nagini - oh yes, that was fun. After the initial fear I think he realizes the same and jumps at the opportunity to prove his sameness to Voldemort.

I am carefully not going to respond to what will happen with Devlin...

I don't think Harry suspected that Voldemort would be there, or even went in believing Devlin would be there. He only brought a handful of men, and did not engage the Order. When his men find a body, however, his logical mind betrays him and he is every bit a father.

I loved the scene with the books. I've been working on that conclusion since nearly the beginning of the whole series! I sighed with relief after I had wrote it! LOL

Thank you for pointing out the typos!

I'm glad you loved the chapter so much. I think this might lose it's ranking to the next one, though. ;-)

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Review #14, by Shadeslayer Wounds

16th November 2014:
Finally got up! Greatc chapter love the characters

Author's Response: .

Don't mind me as I stare at your review with a stupid grin on my face. It is not often I get reviews that weren't traded for others.

Thank you for taking time to review! I hope you enjoy the next chapter - it is in the queue. :)

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Review #15, by CambAngst Not Your Devy Anymore

1st November 2014:
Hi! I'm here for our swap!

Voldemort is starting to get really strange, and to be honest it's creeping me out a little. Saving Dubhn's books? Making a point of telling Dubhn that he saved them? It's like the Dark Lord's suddenly become sentimental, a character trait which fits him about as well as a bikini on a hippogriff. Then there was this:

"Thank you," he said, instead. Voldemort bowed his head in acknowledgement. -- That gesture is so difficult to imagine.

I see where Devlin's thought process is going in this chapter and it's genuinely terrifying. If Voldemort is starting to see him as Devlin rather than Dubhn, that's a very bad thing indeed.

It's a very strange state of affairs when Bellatrix Lestrange appears in a story and it actually serves to lessen the tension. Bravo for creating something truly unique.

"Harry Potter never changed me." Devlin would know, better than most boys, how to create the strongest lie. The strongest lie was always the truth. -- If I think about it, this statement is basically true. Devlin has always been the same person. What he shows to Voldemort -- or to Harry, for that matter -- is what he thinks they expect to see. Devlin, Dubhn and the sharpness -- the trinity of your story -- are pretty much always the same. It's just a matter of which one is most in control at any given moment.

Fate seemed to be pushing him toward the ground under the humble guise of gravity. -- I absolutely adored this line.

The ending scene, with the Auror Damian, was completely chilling. Once again, we see the absolute mercilessness of the Dark Lord. None are permitted to touch what is his. None are permitted to fail him. Death Eaters suffer just as the Aurors do if they forget this lesson, or if they simply can't avoid it.

I felt so sad for Devlin when it was all over. I don't think Emma could ever hate him, but I'm really worried about how he's going to feel about himself.

Looking ahead, I actually feel pretty sure that Voldemort is going to send Devlin back to Hogwarts. The Dark Lord has satisfied his curiosity. He and Devlin are still tangled up in his mind, perhaps more now than ever. He's confident that Harry hasn't changed Devlin. It seems likely to me that Voldemort would be interested in seeing Devlin continue to walk the same path that he walked. We'll see if I'm right.

I saw a few small typos while I was reading:

She face made it seem as though she might tear him to pieces, but her eyes were like they had always been... -- Her face

When he had been at camp, many people had called Voldemort Master or My Lord or sometimes even The Dark Lord, but it has been years since he has heard the reference. -- had been years since he had heard

"Were you aware that his Auror had previously come in contact with him?" -- that this Auror

Sigh. I want him to be Emma's Devy again. Maybe that door is closed now, but I hope he can open new ones. Thanks for the swap!

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Review #16, by CambAngst That Boy

19th October 2014:
Hi! Here for our swap!

Yes, That Boy. That boy who will have me feeling a certain level of anxiety every time I think of him until we find out what happens. That boy who's once again faced with a situation where every word, every reaction, indeed every thought could be a matter of life and death. Life is unfair.

First off, whew. I was glad to be correct about who Voldemort decided to kill. I guess it makes perfect sense, all things considered. Felix would be a loose end if he was allowed to live. Also, he was annoying.

"You should have let me do that," he said, knowing and not knowing, all at once, why he had. -- Perfect response. Devlin -- or I suppose I could say Dubhn -- manages to say something that helps to keep himself tangled up in Voldemort's head.

"I have always been convinced you were just like me," Voldemort said. "They try to change us - to ruin us, but we are superior to them." -- Breathing a big sigh of relief here. It worked! They are still tangled up. I loved the interplay between Devlin, Dubhn and the sharpness here. We hadn't seen that for a while.

Wow, I did not see Scorpius stepping up like this. I guess he's realized that he has no more value among the Death Eaters. His only hope at survival is to find value somewhere else. It was interesting to see how he and Maria manage to finally work together. Each of them brings certain pieces of knowledge to the conversation, and each of them has strengths and weaknesses.

"Do you honestly think Felix was the only one behind this? And don't you think they knew where you would go? To the nice kindly Dumbledore. That's a horrific idea. That is, unless you want to go back too, Ms. Watson?" -- Scorpius knows an awful lot. Not only about what's happened to Devlin, but also the things that happened to Maria. I'm pondering the possibility that he's also a plant. That the Dark Lord means for Devlin to be "rescued" and Scorpius is part of that plot, wittingly or unwittingly. For now, color me suspicious.

I love the way you set up the scene in Little Hangleton. It all fell into place as soon as I started to read.

Devlin wondered if this was how his own expressions appeared when he did not feel them genuinely. He looked side-long at Voldemort and he suddenly chuckled. "Our similarity is uncanny." -- Remember that line from the last chapter where Devlin is talking to McGonagall and he thinks that Voldemort has made him even better than Voldemort. This instantly made me think of that.

The conversation between Devlin and Voldemort as they approach the Riddle home was beautifully done. I could feel the tension in Devlin as he works to observe and memorize the reactions of the new, non-snake-looking Voldemort while doing and saying all the right things. And that last line about the Chamber of Secrets alluded to so much more to come.

I'm curious whether Voldemort realizes what it means to have Geoffrey being in the hands of his enemies. Actually, I'm guessing he does. One more thing that makes be believe there's a larger plan at work here.

I like the little bit of overlap you've been writing into each scene with Maria, Andrew and Scorpius. It's a neat narrative technique and it grounds each scene in time.

"He is an arrogant Auror with a brain the size of a pea. By whatever misfortunate miracle, he is also Head of his department and one of the most powerful Wizards of our time." -- That was handily my favorite line of the story so far.

I really like the way you wrote Scorpius in this scene, although it doesn't make me any less suspicious of him. It's certainly possible that he's unaware of his role in the Dark Lord's plan. See, now I'm completely convinced that this plan is a real thing.

Love the way that Devlin uses images of Emma to strengthen his resolve. It makes Devlin even more special in a way.

So Devlin has only six days worth of his cruciatus potion left. Somehow, I have the feeling that he's not meant to be with Voldemort for that long. I could be wrong, I suppose.

I could only find one typo while I was reading:

Instead, a look or anticipated terror had closed off his face. -- look of anticipated terror

Awesome job! I can't wait to see how this all plays out!

Author's Response: Did you think he'd ever be that boy again? It was such a struggle getting into that boys head again. A while back in the first book I really had to tell myself to forget I knew he'd eventually return to Voldemort, because I found it hard to get into the mindset of Devlin. Just when I truly had stopped struggling to write Devlin, he's returned to Voldemort, and here I was/am, struggling to get back into "that boy's" head. :)

Felix had to die. Left alive, I just didn't feel the shift as much. Voldemort doesn't keep people alive. Felix was just a means to an end. And yeah, he was also annoying. Voldemort and I sorta semi-agreed on the decision.

I can't tell you much about Scorpius, but there are equal reasons for him to try and impress Voldemort as there are for him to decide to seize the opportunity to become valuable to Harry Potter. Right now, he's pretty worthless to both parties, which isn't a good place to be for a pureblood boy.

For fairness, Maria's kidnapping was widely publicized, as well as her return. I imagine an Auror's daughter managing to escape and then be rescued by the Aurors (which some creative tracking methods if you recall) would have made headlines. It's just the sort of story people cling to in times of war.

"that last line about the Chamber of Secrets alluded to so much more to come." - actually, I wonder if you remember the little tidbit in the Ministry in the final chapter of Riddle and Rescue. Of the SOMETHING in Harry that Devlin recognized. If Devlin could just have some time to think, he might actually be able to put something together, here. ;-)

If Voldemort even knows he is still alive. What worth does Geoffrey have to Potter that Voldemort would understand? He has absolutely no worth to Harry, and frankly, without his tie to Devlin, Harry may have simply thrown him into the hands of the Ministry to be imprisoned or executed.

Scorpius' future is on a need-to-know basis, right now. ;-)

You underestimate my meanness. I decided if I had to reshape my plot to avoid physical violence to Devlin, then I would have to turn it all into something more psychological. Six days is his countdown. Don't mistake it for your own. :D

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Review #17, by CambAngst Kidnapping Convergence

18th October 2014:
Hi! I'm here for our swap.

I really love the fact that Devlin's taking the bull by the horns when it comes to his lycanthropy. Granted, it's a different day and age from when the marauders started school, but part of me thinks about how differently things could have turned our for Remus if he'd chosen this approach. The way that Devlin reveals himself to his fellow was pretty awesome.

Three weeks into school, on the cusp of a new month, he started to finally wonder if perhaps Grandfather had lost interest in him beyond what information he must receive from Green and the older Slytherins. -- Sigh. That would be nice, but I can't really see fortune smiling on Devlin like that.

Wow, speaking of Remus, he sort of puts Devlin on display here. Seems like Devlin is up to the task, as well. I was a little surprised how Devlin allowed himself to excel, given how he's tried to conceal his skills from McGonagall and the rest of the school. Then again, McGonagall wasn't asking him to attack or defend himself. I imagine there's also a bit of werewolf interplay going on between Devlin and Remus. Dominance displays and such. I loved the feelings it inspires in Devlin when he realizes that Harry never betrayed his deepest secrets, not even to Remus.

One thing I wanted to mention about the first scene with Will is that it took me a couple of readings to figure out who was who. It wasn't clear at first that the Slytherin boy Will is pinning to the wall was different from the first-year that the Slytherin boy had been bullying. Maybe a bit of clarification up front would make it easier to follow.

That said, I loved the idea behind the scene. Will and Devlin reach something of an understanding in their mutual defense of the poor boy that Voldemort nearly killed to make a point. Then Devlin extends the ultimate olive branch, a chance for Will to learn how his father truly died. As Snape said: Devlin was playing a dangerous game. -- Incredibly dangerous, but Devlin seems to understand the idea of nothing ventured, nothing gained.

"There are lots of things in life that no one asks your permission for," Devlin said. The boy shivered next to him. Will looked at them both. -- Amen to that.

It seems like Devlin has grown tired of playing dumb for McGonagall's benefit. Not that it benefited him all that much in the first place, apparently. I love the way you chose to write McGonagall here. She isn't at all surprised that Devlin's been sandbagging his attempts at Transfiguration; it doesn't even come up. She can see all of the telltale signs of a Potter boy planning something, as well as the ghost of a young Tom Riddle. While reading this, I had never quite put it together in my head that she would be very likely to see things in Devlin that remind her of her former schoolmate. The whole conversation between the two of them is awesome, especially Devlin's explanation.

Sometimes, without even knowing it, he had made Devlin better than himself. -- Every so often, you write a chapter that's filled with deep, philosophical truths. This is definitely one of those.

Wow! I forgot that another of Voldemort's contemporaries continues to live inside Hogwarts Castle. That was an awesome catch with Myrtle's reaction to Devlin.

Even when he's about to be taken back to Voldemort, Devlin's first thought is of Maria's safety. "Shhh," he said, shaking his head. "Don't scream, Maria. Don't scream." I don't think I can mention this often enough: I love the two of them together. I really hope that she goes to someone for help.

The scene after Felix delivers Devlin to Voldemort was intense. I love the way you wove so much psychology into it. Devlin is completely tuned in to what Voldemort expects him to be, what Voldemort wants him to be, what Voldemort values. Devlin puts Felix immediately in his place, asserting his own worth and power. For that reason, I'm pretty sure that the Killing Curse at the end of the chapter is directed toward Felix. I guess I'll find out soon. All of the little mind games with Voldemort, like calling Devlin by his birth name, ratcheted up the tension. I am so excited to see what comes next. Fortunately, your new chapter just validated, so I don't have to wait. :)

One typo I noticed:

Just as she was a woman who knew mistakes could not be undone but only acknowledge, he was a boy who knew righteous anger was not the answer and that conflict did not usually achieve what one wanted. -- acknowledged

Awesome job!

Author's Response: With Devlin, I think it ends up being clear to him that it is the ONLY way to deal with it. As he says, everyone else saw the bite and really - I bet a bunch of those boys already knew anyways. Devlin did not want it used against him.

Working backwards in my reviews is always a bit strange, but also fun. Obviously, you knew better than Devlin - Voldemort is still interested.

I don't think Remus was really thinking in that moment. Devlin clearly wasn't 'listening' and he did his typical teacher move -make the distracted kid prove he was listening by preforming the task-. I think Remus had a moment of dawning realization and afterwards probably didn't see how he could have made the mistake.

--One thing I wanted to mention about the first scene with Will is that it took me a couple of readings to figure out who was who.-- I re-read the scene and can see what you mean. I'll make an effort to fix that!

I'm glad you liked the conversation between McGonagall and Devlin and that it read realistically.

The ending scene was tense to write, as well, so I am glad it all read well.

Thanks for the review, Dan!

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Review #18, by Mrs Sirius Black Kidnapping Convergence

10th October 2014:
Great chapter!

I have a feeling that the killing curse is aimed at Felix and not Devlin. I do hope I am right.

Author's Response: Whoa...did you just review my story without a swap or anything? :D :D :D :D :D Oh Merlin, you made my day! :D :D :D Thank you so much for the review!

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Review #19, by CambAngst Lumos

5th October 2014:
Hi, there! I'm here for our swap. :)

Before I get into the substance of this chapter, I have one over-arching observation. The editing on this chapter was pretty rough. I think I found it more jarring than I normally would because your chapters are usually impeccable where typos are concerned. I'll try to point out some of what I noticed, but I don't want this review to read like a mark-up.

Potters seem incapable of having an uneventful first flying lesson. I thought it was interesting that Kendall already knows that Maria's father is an Auror. I guess that sort of thing isn't exactly a secret, but it still caught my attention that he pointed it out. Gah, now even I'm seeing Junior Death Eaters everywhere I look.

I liked the way you wrote Ginny. She's a little like Madam Hooch, except with a lot more fire to her. The character really reminded me of the girl who helped Harry keep order when he was Quidditch captain.

I'm curious, were you intentionally experimenting with verb tenses in this chapter? A lot of what you wrote was in various forms of present tense, which clashed with other parts that were in your normal past tense. If there was a greater plan going on, I'm afraid I wasn't able to figure it out.

I liked the way that Devlin's focus sort of drifts in and out. To me, it was an effective narrative technique. It highlighted Devlin's state of mind, which seems to be a little confused.

Devlin quickly learns that following the letter but not the spirit of the rules isn't going to get you very far with Ginny. Your whole premise -- that Devlin's can't understand why Ginny's upset because he lacks any experience with a teacher who actually cares about the students' safety rather than just the end result of the lesson -- was really clever and you executed it well. Ginny sort-of punishment was also genius. There's obviously a price to being a little too big for your own britches, as my grandparents would have said.

Aww! Maria is a little star-struck and Devlin really needed the comfort right at that moment. The two of them are adorable together!

I love your story for a lot of reasons. Sometimes, I love it just because I love good writing about Potions.

Oh, wow. I really didn't see that coming with Devlin's first wand. That really brings the whole thing home in a deeply personal way, doesn't it? And the truth is now staring Devlin right in the face. The man saved Devlin's life and Voldemort killed the man for his trouble. I'm not completely sure how, but I get the feeling that's going to be important somewhere along the way.

I have to say, the accommodations Hogwarts is making for Devlin are a lot better than having him crawl down a filthy tunnel to a crumbling old shack. Interesting that Harry would be the one to challenge Devlin's valuation of Scorpius Malfoy. On one level, I can't imagine that Harry would want Devlin getting chummy with a boy who's plainly very close to Voldemort's inner circle. But on the other, he doesn't want Devlin to devalue anyone the way that Voldemort does. Definitely some conflicting emotions going on there.

"No - I think Ginny and I are good," he said, but there was something there that let Devlin blame him, at least a little. -- Aha! I wondered whether there had ever been anything there...

Wow. You got that word out of me twice in one chapter with the same subplot. No wonder that wand has such an affinity for Devlin.

Again, some real feelings there with Devlin and Emma. I think he's slowly getting back what he lost.

So, the things that I noticed aside from the tense thing:

Devlin never remembered uttered the word to a broom before, -- uttering

Even now he can remember the feel of Harry behind him, clutching him as he gives him a ride on his room. -- broom

She had to know he could already fly; she had seen him play against Freddie at the Borrow. -- Burrow

Her's was warm and steady and he curled his fingers around her fingers, trying to anchor himself in reality. -- Hers

He'd been to young for his letter, then. -- too young

The next time he saw him, they were in Potion's class. -- Potions class

One of the reasons he had always loved Potions was because of it's predictability. -- its

Devlin scratched at a sticker Emma must have put on the edge of the table while he was gone. -- You have basically the exact same phrase earlier in the scene.

Harry was going to tell him some rubbish about how some man he hadn't know couldn't have been trying to protect him and he was putting responsibility onto himself that did not belong there. -- he hadn't known

Very interesting developments! I'm really looking forward to this next chapter, with all of your hints about Voldemort!

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Review #20, by Gabriella Hunter Lumos

5th October 2014:

This is Gabbie from the forums dumping this review on you for our swap! I came here a lot sooner than you might have expected, eh? Hahahah.

It's good to be back! I was wondering how Devlin was going to be faring in Hogwarts and it seems like things have gone a bit better on one hand but not so well on the other. What I really like about Devlin though is that he's really tuned into other's emotions and thoughts, he's able to not quite understand sometimes but he sees things in a way that others might not have.

I really enjoyed his thoughts on Maria though and I'll have to read the previous novel for more of that. I think that there's a really good bond between them and I'm curious to see where that goes in the future. Devlin of course isn't quite as trusting of others as he is of Maria though, I'm wondering when his issue with Scorpius is going to be resolved? Hm...

Ah, Ginny! I was wondering when she would show up and I'm curious now! What happened with her and Harry? Will she be a female Snape?! D':

Devlin seeing the blood was a bit scary, I wasn't sure what was going to happen but thank goodness he helped that kid. What might be a problem for him though is his arrogance, he needs to be a bit more careful with that and his conversation with Harry towards the end has me really intrigued. Will he take any of that to heart?

I'm also really curious about his wand too but I'll have to read the first novel to understand all of that. Hahahha. The last sentence of this made me sad though, I hope Devlin can finally learn to be himself someday without having his past and Voldemort always shifting him into someone else. :(

Excellent chapter! I shall return!

Much love,


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Review #21, by CambAngst Memory and Reality

3rd October 2014:
Hi! Back again for another thrilling chapter!

I loved the scene where Devlin analyzes the meaning of his encounter with Scorpius on the train. He frames it all up according to that demented way that Voldemort has taught him to assess value. Devlin is a possession of the Dark Lord's, so he has value. Scorpius is the son of a man killed because he impinged, in some small way, on Voldemort's sense of ownership over Devlin. He has no value.

Wow, Voldemort has any number of operatives at Hogwarts, it seems. I wonder whether Harry understands the true extent to which Voldemort is able to make his presence felt to Devlin. Or whether Dumbledore understands it, either, for that matter. It might very much change their approach.

I'm impressed by the way that Devlin defuses the situation brewing between his muggle-born housemate and the other Slytherin First Years. It was suitably skillful for a child as mature as Devlin, although I'm not altogether sure what Devlin's angle is here. He wouldn't normally intervene like that without a reason.

Of all the boys in Devlin's dorm, Demetrius is the one who intrigues me the most. All of them are interesting, as seen through Devlin's highly detail-oriented eyes, but there's something about the quiet boy with the indistinct features who isn't going out of his way to create a stir. Not entirely Slytherin-like.

Ah, the awkwardness of life in a common bathing/sleeping area. It passes quickly, but for Devlin it has to be even worse than your average eleven-year-old. There goes Demetrius again, setting off the creepy-meter. Something about that boy isn't right. He sees too much, understands too much.

It would be this moment that forever defined Andrew to Devlin. Years later, men together, Devlin would still think of this moment. -- I really like the sentiment here. Devlin obviously hasn't spent any time around muggle-born children in his life. I was worried he'd miss that in Slytherin.

It's interesting that Devlin would allow himself to be roped into sitting with Maria in front of his fellow Slytherins. It felt to me like Devlin would see that as placing her at a certain amount of risk. Then again, maybe it's his was of showing them that she's his. That she has value the same way that Voldemort has shown that Devlin has value. He's a complicated lad sometimes.

I liked your rendition of Snape's famous "welcoming speech". Very true to the character and the books. Potioneers are all about repeatable, exact processes. They're probably not the type to change it up a lot from one year to the next.

Frankly, he thought that would be a rather profitable potion; even if it was a hoax. -- Now that's an enterprising lad! I do love authors who aren't afraid to delve into the technical and subtle aspects of potion brewing. Bravo!

Wow. Seems like McGonagall's a bit afraid of Devlin. Worried, at least. I suppose the tinge of Voldemort will do that to a person.

The last scene, or pair of scenes I guess, were my favorite part of the chapter. Devlin has the oddest combination of being coldly rational and vulnerable at the same time. He assesses the position he's in with the older boys very well for a terrified eleven-year-old. There was nothing to gain by putting his magical skills on display to fight them off and much to lose. Yet he instinctively runs to Snape for comfort. Because Devlin's definition of comfort is rather twisted, obviously. Snape's cold reproach, so similar to how Voldemort would have belittled Devlin, seems to do the trick.

I skipped ahead a bit there. I would be remiss if I didn't mention Devlin's flashback to the camp. Another small detail showing how Devlin came to be who he is, the events that shaped the boy. Geoffrey's intervention was written incredibly well.

Awesome chapter! I enjoyed it a lot!

Author's Response: I've been neglecting review responses, but I figured I'd do some until someone else asks for a swap tonight. :)

I enjoyed writing that analytical process. I think the sadder thing was that Malfoy knew exactly what Devlin was doing.

You have to anticipate that Devlin may see spies where they don't exist, although the older boy definitely seems obvious at this point. I think Harry probably does know and you'll just have to wait to see what he does. :)

I think Devlin isn't really interested in watching someone being bullied and the benefit is rather selfish at this point.

Yeah, it was a bit awkward, writing that scene. LOL

Devlin has a talent for recognizing the strength is small acts, I think.

As to Maria, I think you may be onto something. I'm not sure he would have sat next to her, either - if there hadn't been another boy. Not that he might fully grasp that.

McGonagall did go to school with Devlin's look-alike...

Fear of being hurt has always pushed Devlin to be less rash. As Geoffrey has said, he is just a boy, who has the talent to do whatever it takes not to die.

Although Devlin does not consciously realize it, Snape and he are much alike. I think that may be part of what draws him toward Snape.

Thanks for the comment about the flashback - I was hoping it all seemed in keeping with Devlin's nightmares/memories. :)

Thanks for another awesome review, Dan!

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Review #22, by daliha Something New

30th September 2014:
Hello here for the swap! I haven't read your first novel so I was sort of lost here, so my review may not be as through as some of the others you've received.

I just wanted to say it's an interesting first chapter, Devlin Potter isn't a normal boy, the part of him growing up was very well done.

I also enjoyed the part with the wands very much, I also like how you've included all of the children and their different reactions.

The sorting was also well done and gave me chills, how he fears Voldemort yet he calls him Grandfather, it's strange but I'll have to read the first novel to understand whats going on.

I will go and read the first novel tomorrow. Now I've gotta get to bed, but I'll be back (as I am curious to see what going on.)

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Review #23, by Gabriella Hunter Memory and Reality

29th September 2014:

I'm here a bit late for our swap but I was a tad busy and wasn't able to get to it until now. Real life is a major pain, you know? I find it to be quite rude. Hahahah.

Anyway, on to this! I really should go back and read the rest of the first novel but I was really curious on where you were going to go after the first chapter for this sequel. I feel like I'm cheating...

Devlin has friends and enemies everywhere, it seems. I'm not sure if I like the fact that his entire school life at Hogwarts has already been prepared for him though but he took advantage of what he could gain from it. As usual, Devlin is far wiser than anyone else his age and he's able to notice things that everyone else would have just pushed aside.

What I liked about this chapter was that things didn't go the way he expected. I'm curious to find out what friendships truly blossom with him and his Slytherin dorm mates, there are some interesting characters there. I'm not sure what to make of some of them but I'm sure that Devlin will pick his friendships carefully.

It seems like Devlin is a bit of a celebrity to his fellow Slytherins and I really want to find out what happened with Scorpius's dad. I haven't read the rest of the first novel of course but I know that it was pretty awful, death for death is what I kept thinking of while reading. Devlin is brave, calculating and oddly resigned to his fate, I would love to see him breaking away from Voldemort and being himself.

I really liked this ending too, Snape wasn't fawning over him or offering any support. Devlin didn't seem to know what to do with himself after he was jumped by those older boys and I know that he would have liked some manner of comfort or conversation with someone he trusted.

Snape was not that man. I don't think he has much tolerance for the game Devlin is playing and I'm wondering how that will come into play later on.

I didn't spot any major CC's in this chapter so you're all good on that end. The flow of this is great and you've got some interesting characters that I can't wait to see develop. :D

Thanks for the swap!

Much love,


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Review #24, by Gabriella Hunter Something New

23rd September 2014:

This is Gabbie from the forums with your review and it's good to be back. I was really hoping that you were going to use the title that I suggested on the forums but alas, some other time perhaps. Hahahhahaha.

I was a bit confused though while I was reading since I haven't finished Devlin Potter yet and it's obvious that in some parts of this first chapter that I'll need to catch up. I do like the changes that Devlin has made since the first novel though, he's a bit more relaxed now but as I was reading, he's still just as sly as ever. I was really intrigued by the sight of Dumbledore at the table and I found that Devlin's thoughts about growing up were very well-done, it's not quite the same when you hit that landmark and stop being a kid. There's something so final about it and I liked that he felt himself shift slightly, though I'm sure that he's far more mature than most eleven year old boys his age.

I liked the brief glimpse of vulnerability you gave him though, his relationship with Alexandra seems to be far warmer than the one he has with Harry. I felt like he's still very uncomfortable around him and he still refers to him as HE instead of "Dad" or "my father", it really makes their relationship clear.

Also, I love Emma. She's adorable.

I think that my favorite part of this chapter though was the wands. I wasn't sure what was going to happen with Devlin but I think that you built up to the actual moment very well. It was interesting to see that Devlin could sense and see magic in others but was so determined that his old wand was the one that was meant for him. Of course that changed when he received his new one and I'm curious...if that wand has been there since before Ollivander, how old IS it? I'm sure there's some significance to that and I'm curious about how you'll work it in later.

Because I haven't finished reading the first novel, I thought the last half of this chapter was really confusing. It's obvious that Devlin has a relationship with Maria and saved her life at some point but I'm not sure what Scorpius has to do with anything but that was a really intense chapter. I was able to get enough of the animosity and sadness all at once and you wrote it really well.

Slytherin, eh? I was sort of hoping that Devlin would be put into a completely random House. I was thinking that he was going to wind up in Ravenclaw since he values the meaning behind words and would find the riddles challenging but I'm even more curious now. Slytherin House means that he's even closer to Voldemort and I'm really interested in seeing how that works itself out.

Devlin hasn't severed his ties with him and it's clear that Voldemort has eyes everywhere. Very ominous end to the chapter too, I'm really eager to read the next one!

I only spotted a few misspelled words here and there but other than that, everything else was pure gold.

Thanks for the read!

Much love,


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Review #25, by CambAngst Something New

22nd September 2014:
Here for our review swap!

Yay, your new story is off and running! Already we have some interesting new subplots and a couple of new characters. This is going to be fun!

Devlin gets his letter personally delivered by Dumbldore. I'm sure the intent is vastly different, but I can't help but think about the last young wizard who we know for certain had his letter delivered by Albus Dumbledore. I see what you did there...

It's interesting to see the amount of thought that Devlin had put into the exact circumstances under which he'd receive his Hogwarts letter and I confess to being very curious whether it would have arrived if he'd still been by Voldemort's side. As possessive as Voldemort is of Devlin, it really does seem to me that it would have been important to Voldemort that Devlin attend Hogwarts. For Voldemort to see his grand experiment play out to its natural conclusion, Devlin would have needed to walk that path. I'd be really curious to know how that scenario would have played out in your mind.

Are you planning to share, at some point, how Devlin ended up with the middle name Augustus? Caesar was Augustus's great-uncle on his mother's side, and he adopted Augustus and named him his heir. If you're somehow setting Devlin up to be the next dark lord, that was really, really clever.

"In fact, it has been proven to me over the years that students actually spend the majority of their time on other things while at school - as a whole, they seem to flourish despite their distractions." -- cheeky Dumbledore! Also, I think you meant to say "... students who actually spend..."

I really like what's starting to develop between Devlin and Maria in this story. They're obviously both young, so it's more of a protective brother-sister thing at this point, but I see huge potential there.

I really, really loved the scene in Olivander's shop. One of my favorite things throughout the first story was the little ways that life chips away at the things that Devlin thinks he's certain of just because Voldemort said so. The physical sensations that you wrote for Devlin combined with the mental awakening was awesome. "That, child," he said, "is how your magic is meant to feel through a wand." -- Great line! Your Olivander reminded me so much of the quirky, spiritual, enigmatic wizard from Sorceror's Stone.

I guess it doesn't really matter how Voldemort managed to get that note inside Devlin's book. The point is, he did.

I enjoyed the entire scene with Devlin getting up early and preparing for his trip to Hogwarts. Even though he's more playing at normality than actually feeling it, it was neat to see him experimenting with being able to joke and smirk with his family. The small details, like Emma's hilariously mismatched outfit, really helped to sell the whole scene.

A convertible? Nice touch! Again, it seems like Harry is going out of his way to show Devlin how confident he is that Voldemort won't be able to take him. "I'm so unconcerned, I'm going to drive a car that doesn't even have a roof!"

Ooh! A testy first meeting with Scorpius Malfoy. I think Scorpius was genuinely trying to extend an olive branch, but Devlin was far from ready to accept it. Given where Devlin ended up being sorted and given that both boys have been victimized by the Dark Lord in their own way, I wonder whether the two of them might find a fair bit of common ground in this story. Once they get past the mistrust, that is.

The conversation between Devlin and the Sorting Hat was interesting. I like that the hat was completely undeterred by Devlin's mental shielding. I could imagine it having a similar conversation with a young Tom Riddle, except for the brave and selfless part.

Ah, so Kendall Green is Voldemort's spy. I wonder whether he's an ordinary child who's been trained to do the Dark Lord's bidding, or something else? I guess we'll find out in good time.

A couple of things I noticed while reading:

-- Was there a reason that the Quinn boy was sorted before Devlin? P comes before Q.

-- He thought charms would be his favorite class, and he settled this book off the pile of the others, cracking the spin open. -- spine

-- This was all getting too far afield for Devlin, and he shook his head as he experienced that sense of not quiet being able to fully grasp his own train of thought. -- not quite

-- Maria Watson made it into Gryffendor. He wasn't terribly surprised. -- Gryffindor

Awesome start! I'm really excited to see how Devlin's story progresses!

Author's Response: Dan,

Thanks for the review! This chapter was actually relatively laid-back - or maybe that’s just in comparison to the chapters going forward. It IS going to be fun!

Yes, I had Dumbledore deliver it for a couple reasons. I thought Dumbledore would want to, not just because he is close to Harry, but because Devlin IS this not-Tom boy in his mind, but still somewhat Tom. I hope that makes sense, in a sort of Dumbledore way.

You always seem to pick up on my equal curiosity and when you’re interested in a What-if, I have usually started one already on that topic! I really do need to publish all these what-ifs... (I actually have a document titled just that, with about three hundred pages...) But yes, I think he would have gotten his letter even with Voldemort. I just think I’d be writing about a whole different year if that had been the case. I love playing with the idea of Harry finding Devlin far later than sooner.

Are you planning to share, at some point, how Devlin ended up with the middle name Augustus? Caesar was Augustus's great-uncle on his mother's side, and he adopted Augustus and named him his heir. If you're somehow setting Devlin up to be the next dark lord, that was really, really clever.
Hmm, that’s pretty cool. I’ll take credit for that. In all actuality, it means something slightly different that will be revealed soon. Things like this are how I know you’ve never found my other accounts and read the originals of these stories (this is a rewrite of a partially finished sequel). LOL

I think Dumbledore said what I meant him to say... *examines the possible typo* I meant the comment to apply to all students (not that it does, but we aren’t always precise in our language), and if I said “students who actually” I would implicating a portion rather than the whole...was that the issue or have I missed it entirely? Maybe I should have said “that THE students actually...”.

I make no comments towards the Maria thing

Writing the scene in the wand shop was painstaking (I haven’t written Freddie, Thomas, or August nearly enough to make it easy), but so worth it. There is actually more to that, which will come up soon.

Yes, the note. :)

I really, really, really enjoy putting Devlin in muggle contraptions - like elevators and cars. :D

"I'm so unconcerned, I'm going to drive a car that doesn't even have a roof!" YUP and Alexandra’s “Really, Harry” is basically in response to that message right there! ;-)

Once they get past the mistrust, that is. You do realize you’re expecting a Malfoy and Devlin to get ‘past’ mistrusting each other? I think you might be asking a little much. ;-) Or maybe not.

I went through about three different fully written Sorting Hat scenes before I was satisfied enough with this one.

Ah, so Kendall Green is Voldemort's spy. I wonder whether he's an ordinary child who's been trained to do the Dark Lord's bidding, or something else? I guess we'll find out in good time. In general, you might be onto something here. ;-)

I’ll look into the typos. Re-reading the chapter right now, I found like ten additional ones. It’s always this way with first chapters! :)

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