Reading Reviews for Behind the Sketches
14 Reviews Found

Review #1, by Vermouth Impressions

17th March 2018:
He whipped back his hair from his face. “Yes. I’m thinking about transfiguring a miniature wolf out of silver.”

I raised my eyebrows at that. Could that have anything to do with his easygoing nature? I wondered if that would be up for discussion, but I knew it could feel intrusive.

Sirius has some balls here. Well I hope Lupin appreciates the irony in this.


My throat caught. I wanted to tell him that I wanted to start my own business. I wanted to freely say that I wanted to create moving paintings and photographs, and other décor that involved motion. I wanted so very badly to tell someone, tell anyone, what I planned to do with my life.

But I didn’t know if anyone would praise me or tease me for dreaming of doing something different. I didn’t even know how my parents would react. I mean, even my brother, Maurice, had gone out to pursue an athletic career. Quidditch was a career. That in itself was plausible even though I found it annoyingly ridiculous that it was even considered a career when it was a sport.

The magical world is kinda small in that way. We definitely didn't get to see a more artistic side in the books (though we might yet in the movies seeing that the characters are gwoenups and the films would take place in major cities such as Paris). Anyway, Sirius is treating Abigail really well here, I think.


Emma agreed with me as she glanced every so often in Mark’s direction. Mark, being the one to focus on his work 95% of the time (the missing 5% being his meals), kept on, completely oblivious to her sudden… dare I call it fawning?

“Have you told him yet?” I said, hoping that I had lowered my voice enough for her to be the only one to hear.

A red tint appeared in her cheeks and she gushed, “Goodness, no. It would be too much for him… too much for me. We’ve been friends for so long that even if I *did* have feelings, he wouldn’t even see them for what they were. I should tell him, though. I was so close to telling him just the other day… and the day before that… oh, God, it’s so terribly difficult.”

... It's gonna work out for them, wouldn't it? xD

Emma's adorable, and I wish I can be more like Mark with my own studies.


He laughed.

The sound was like new charcoal splitting onto a blank page. It held the promise of a smooth baritone.

It was nice listening to Abigail's thoughts on Snape's Potions ingenuity. And this description really can only have come up by someone with a great love of sketching.


Yes, we both did, but who was she who had taken that certainty away from him?

I couldn’t help but feel annoyed by the thought of this girl who I didn’t know a thing about.

There was a time when I not only disliked thinking about "Gossip Girl" but also actively despised the premise of "rich teens screwing over one another", I thought, "Pffft, just you wait, Gossip 'Girl' would probably turn out to be a guy."

It's a similar kind of irrational disgust I kind of detect here. But luckily for Abigail, she's still way more mature than the eldest von Trapp daughter, and I'll bet she cares more about politics than Lisa does, even when she does fall in love. :)

Author's Response: ...!

Well, I was hoping for something like "Golf is a sport? It can be a career? What?" But everything comes with its own challenges. (I can't wait for Fantastic Beasts!!!)

Emma/Mark happened behind the scenes in the last version. So, yes, they will be fine; it'll work out for them.

It's fun writing Abigail's observations, especially when they're about Snape.

Yeee, you got the reference! (It was only because of her age that the lyric stuck, though. Did you ever finish watching Gossip Girl? 'cause that's exactly what happened. Um... and that was what made up the conflict for that show / rich teens screwing each other over.)

Thank you for reviewing :D Your reviews are giving me a lot to think about; there might be areas inspired by the points you've made.

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Review #2, by Vermouth Color Schemes

16th March 2018:
That night I dreamed about the night sky and his eyes. I don’t think I’ve ever compared them to stars, but maybe they could be… or they could be the silver lined clouds that lingered beneath the moon.

And then McGonagall chased me and said, “I regret to tell you that you have failing marks, Miss McGain. You will have to drop my NEWT class—”

“That’s not true!” I yelled back. “That’s not true!”

Ah, anxiety dreams. Enough to make everyone cry and then break things in their bedroom.


“Yes, very typical. She’s assuming, though, since… you know…” Mark glanced at Emma with a grin and said, “We only refer to you as Em at my house.”

“Em? What’s so bad about two syllable words like Em-Ma?” she wondered before turning to her porridge.

Mark blanched and hid behind his book. “Oh, nothing. That…” he finished softly, “…my fault…”

I raised my eyebrows. Curious.

Either Mrs. Lee is called Emma, or it's the name of someone she hates . . .?

“Yes, yes, Abby! And you! You only call me by my pet name at your house, don’t you? Why is that?” Emma asked suddenly, waving to me as well.

I wondered then if anything was going to change between them in that instant.

Oh. OH.


I waved, and then I just stared at Sirius.

Gods above, his hair and eyes and face!

Calm down, calm down, calm down.

I had never stared into his eyes before. The grays swirled together and strands of starlight seemed to peek through.

Instead of Padfoot, we probably should just nickname him "Kaa". xD


I took a deep breath and glanced at all the flying books that were going from one shelf to another… and then I just decided to tell her.

“I have hated… or despised… disliked? Disliked this boy who I can contemplate as having the largest ego in the whole world! I could pop it to see if there was anything there, but… he does have something there. It’s an intelligence like no other. I wonder at times what it is that he wants to do… what it is that he’s doing it for… and what is it that really flusters me so much about him besides that.” I couldn’t keep myself fixated on Alea’s face to tell her with eye contact. My eyes wandered like my mind wandered.

It was true. There was more to him than met the eye, and I did want to know. And I was confused about that. So terribly confused.

And then…

“On the other hand… there’s this other boy… who is so handsome it almost hurts to look at him. Yes, it almost does. I just get so incredibly wobbly on the inside and on the outside, and he’s funny. Granted, he could be smarter about a couple of things… but he’s so… he’s so…” I sighed and blushed through my monologue. “He’s so unreachable, but still nice, helpful, and so normal. Sometimes I wonder why he even talks to me… and it’s just so nice to talk to him. I’ve never really talked to anyone before. Not even this much! But… Merlin, everything’s so upside down this year. I almost wonder why… why is this happening to me?”

All this to be summarized as, '"Oh." Alea blinked. "Boys."'

Author's Response: Yup. It's mostly about the boys, lol. Thanks for reviewing btw :D

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Review #3, by Vermouth Burnishing

16th March 2018:
Sirius had the nerve to swing his seemingly perfect black hair to the side. I wondered suddenly what it would be like to tread my fingers through it. Would it feel like silk thread? I blushed afterward and hid my face with my books. Curse my shyness.

... ...

How did his head not turn over like mine at the thought of me running my fingers through his hair and possibly even tracing his lips with my fingertips?

Oh, my goodness, those lips. I loved how they dipped into a slight v and spread out… I longed to figure out how his thicker lower lip felt between my teeth.

Why did he continue to call me Miss McGain?

So much nonsensical niceness. :)


The red cushion tumbled from side to side on the table and the pins lifted out. I was surprised at how it slowly blossomed feet, legs, a snout, eyes, and porcupine needles. I had a sudden urge to pick it up and I did, and—

“Aw!” I squealed, holding it to my chest.

I read it as "Ow." so yeah it would have been much different.


He raised his perfect eyebrows and shrugged it off. “Ah, well, suit yourself. A waste of a good opportunity, I’d say. Porcupines can make great familiars.”

They weren’t even *on* the list of acceptable familiars on the annual school supplies shopping list. I looked at him sidelong and wondered if he was really that big of a troublemaker. I brushed back the porcupine’s needles back and set it on the table.

... ...

“Bloody hell! Good job. Now just sneak the little fellow into your backpack. I bet she has a hundred stashed away somewhere,” he encouraged me once McGonagall was out of earshot.

That raises a whole other can of worms about transfiguration magic, did they create real life? Do those animals have souls?


Did Quidditch build muscles? I could distinctly remember boys from the Ravenclaw team training with Quaffles and Bludgers on the ground before training up in the air on broomsticks. Kit often remarked that it was heavy work on the arms. Of course, he seldom flexed his arms for girls unless he was around his girlfriend.

#WhatAKeeper #NotSorryAboutThePun

Author's Response: I guess that the transfiguration magic bit will get mentioned sooner or later in McGonagall's NEWT level classes. (See, you've given me a lot to think about xD) Great questions, though.

Good pun. Very subtle.

Thank you for reviewing~
Your insightful reviews are always nice to read~

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Review #4, by Vermouth Charcoals

28th February 2018:
“He’s agreeable,” Emma commented. “Nothing noticeably remarkable, but agreeable nevertheless. At least now I know where you got your new favorite word from.”

I snorted, “Alright, mum, but please realize that we’re just classmates who aren’t even interested in each other.”

I may have to go back because I missed out on this new favourite word of hers.

“Anyway, onto other things… I think that I finally conquered the Patricia problem. There’s this new spell going around, and I don’t know where it started from, but it makes this delicate silencing that isn’t noticeable to the person outside of the silencing bubble. It’s brilliant and I wish I’d known who’d made it so that I could thank him or her. It’s literally saved my life, I tell you.”

*fist-pumps at yet another Canon easter egg. And the dramic irony*

“Sir,” I spoke so softly that it was no wonder that no one heard me. I must have squeaked like a mouse right then and there because only then did someone beside me notice and clear his throat.

“Sir, Miss McGain requires your attention,” James Potter spoke up.

And so James almost inadvertently contributed to taking his nemesis down a peg, if not for the fact that the potion wouldn't really go wrong. :D

One thing that many students associated with us Ravenclaws was that we had a manner of speech that incremented our use of verbose prose just as we became flustered, upset, or angry. I was so incredibly upset, and so worried, that I was on the verge of crying.

You're creating a great Ravenclaw character. Kind of reminds me of the fic author we'd discussed, who once wrote that Gryffindors just simply are incapable of being subtle, "A Ravenclaw might as well try to say three sentences in a row without using 'Thus'." Except that that line, while fitting, remains but a footnote becasue the story didn't centre around a Ravenclaw like yours does. :)

Emma was very sweet in the way she both comforted Abigail and remaining fair in her assessment of Snape. Which House is she in, again? Probably Ravenclaw too, if I recall correctly.

I also don't think you dragged out the last bit. It is the transition into the next part, Abigail beginning to know Lily. Not to mention it would take time to process Severus in her brain. She's still smarting over his potions showing-off, and she's also cared about him enough to sketch a portrait of him, "those black pools of color and the pale light that contrasted and created weight in the space he took." *sighs as I savour this* :)

Author's Response: James is trying to change at this point, but yup, that was intentional (for him to have inadvertently contributed to taking his nemesis down a peg, as you put it).

Yup, Emma's a Ravenclaw, too.

I'm glad that you liked the chapter's ending ^^ Thank you for commenting!

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Review #5, by Vermouth A Crayon and a Pastel

28th February 2018:
It is going to be interesting to see if this cross-House class partnerships thing will be carried down into many future chapters as well.

I scooted my chair under the table until I could feel my stomach blob under the tabletop.

Self-consciousness, you've nailed it here. Next thing you know Abigail is gonna sink under the desk so that no one can see her. Same with the latter passage where she compared herself to the likes of Rebecca.

‘Oh, I have no claims to this boy!’ I found myself thinking, imagining several girls holding torches and pitchforks. ‘Take him if you want him! I don’t even know his name!’

Oh this bit is so hilarious. Almost every Maurauders-era fic I've read has made Sirius into this ladies man (hums "He's A Tramp" by Peggy Lee), and now I'm imagining the girls running past Abigail to swarm over him. Transfiguration with Sirius and Potions with Sev, but Abigail is not going to keep herself together.

It was easier when I dealt with Gregory Boot, a Hufflepuff who helped relentlessly in any task. He put everything down on the first day in Herbology: “I am not going to risk anything here, but I will end you if my Outstanding plummets.”

“My Exceeds Expectations could be worse, but I’d rather it stay the same,” I declared my argument.

After that, we both became fast friends, I think.

Brains can be so attrctive sometimes. Also, nice canon surname reference. His son or nephew is destined to be even smarter than him, it seems. #SuperiorHouse

Throughout the first month of working with him, I found that Severus was different. His silence was melodious with mine. We created a steady rhythm in which we would only talk when we needed something or motioned to each other before something was amiss. Yet, his attitude and his very protective reaction to his things and his person… I wondered about that. What happened that made him build such a thick wall around himself like that?

What could it be, indeed.

“Are you ready to go to dinner, Lady Pommington?” I asked as I pried open my trunk and rearranged my books inside.

“Quite, Lady McGain,” Emma replied, and then she muttered, “Quickly, quickly!”

“See you at dinner, ladies!” Emma cried as we both skirted by Angelique and Rebecca’s stylistic goings-on.

We talked meanwhile we walked.

“How was your day, Miss McGain?” Emma teased.

I sighed, “Please stop that. It’s not funny, you know.”

Funny how they started off with noblewomen titles but it was "Miss McGain" that really put Abigail off. Maybe it reminded her of a teacher, instead of just students teasing one another.

And I just realized here that Gregory, Sirius and Severus all come from a different House.

Author's Response: Yeah, Sirius' fan club has always been a favorite element of mine xD

*admires your attention to detail*

That conversation took a turn there because of the "How was your day, Miss McGain", which is the way Sirius always greets her in McGonagall's class. I guess it's not that prominent, but... ah, well.

Yes, interhouse friendships are a thing in this fanfic instead of just between Gryffindors and Ravenclaws like in the last version. *stops myself from explaining why, and just carries on* I'll explain through the story anyway.

Thank you again for commenting~

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Review #6, by EmmyBacon Rhythm and Pacing

8th January 2018:
I like the interaction with the study group at breakfast and I'm interested to see why Mark reacted the way he did!

'My potential' is one of those fuzzy gave me those warm feels when reading it!

Thanks :)
Em xxx

Author's Response: Yayyy! There might be more interaction between the Ravenclaws and the study group. I'll explain Mark's reaction in the next chapter. ^__^ I'm so happy that you liked that scene.

Thank *you* for leaving a comment. I love seeing what you guys enjoy.

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Review #7, by EmmyBacon Proofs

19th December 2017:
I like Abby. She stays true to herself even if that gets her into trouble. Great character development.

Looking forward to reading more


Author's Response: Thank you! ♥

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Review #8, by museclio Proofs

18th December 2017:
There's something amusing about Abby's fear of owls, maybe it's at odds with her logical Ravenclaw traits :)
Ah the return of Sirius, I do like how gentlemanly you write him. Snape is growing on me though. Are they sixth years or sevenths? I read you write sixth somewhere but they're doing their newts so I'm guessing seventh? If so I'd like too see darker things start to intrude on Abby's happy, fluffy world again. Are you introducing old Voldemort in your Fic? I know the stuff with Alice and frank was mentioned but Abby is so in her own little world.
I love the longer chapters!
So happy to read more, enjoyed this as always :) :) merry Christmas!

Author's Response: hehe; I'm planning on adding a little more onto that little thing with the owls. I didn't let her have a familiar... so I'll have to explain that sometime in the story. I love that you like Sirius and Snape :D They are sixth years. I'm excited to start a correspondence with letters soon, so we'll see how that goes. I might introduce old Voldemort in this fic. The Alice and Frank stuff will be clarified soon ... and your observations are so keen omg! It helps to see another perspective from outside of the creating zone. ^^!

Thank you so much for reviewing! Happy New Year :D

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Review #9, by Vermouth A Trio of Watercolors

9th November 2017:
I really love how effortlessly you slip from Abigail's inner monologue to the outside world she observes, and the interactions she had with other people on the train, and back again. She's an introvert who still manages to "function" pretty well.

Wow, what a way for Abigail and Emma to first meet and become friends, immersed in her art hobby, the latter barging in but with admiration for the craft.


I retorted, tentatively curled up in my corner by the window curled up with my blanket around my shoulders. I liked how it was big enough to spill over my legs and stomach. I had Nostradamus’ Prophecies on the seat beside me for later reading. It was a wizarding art textbook with detailed illustrations and descriptions of those prophecies. In my defense, very Dark Ages (plus Renaissance).

This reminds me: You need to watch "Mousehunt" one day, if you haven't already.


Of course, I knew a thing or two about how right I was, but so long as she hadn’t caught on… I was safe.

Ah, where would we be without keeping things from people and hoping for the best? ;)


“A skull and a snake? That’s dark, that is,” Kit McKelsy muttered, leaving a biscuit back where it had been on the heap beside him.

Great worldbuilding there, nudging in mentions of Death Eaters that those of us familiar with the original books would get, but most characters of that generation would not.

I also wonder what happened to Alice and Frank? This can't be the Trauma we know of in the books, since although they may be older than Lily and James, Neville was born the same year as Harry. Maybe some supremacist Slytherins ambushed them outside of school? And were the Longbottom family considered to be blood traitors? (Ernie Macmillan once mentioned to Harry in OotP his family's continued support for Dumbledore and stance against Voldemort, so I wonder if the Macmillans are considered that as well.)


Ah, I guess the boy is Sirius Black, after all. :)

Author's Response: You made some great observations, omg ♥ I'm still working out the kinks with what happened to Lily, James, Alice, and Frank.

And yes, the boy is Sirius, but things change around for the better afterward.

I'm glad you like the narrative~

(I added Mousehunt to my list... I'll get to it sometime...)

Thank you for the stellar reviews, btw~ They rendered me speechless the first time I saw them. I'm not as intimidated by their beauty now, though, so I might as well reply...!

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Review #10, by Vermouth Planning

8th November 2017:
Hurray you're back, Meli! I am so glad I kept a copy of the old version of this fic, and it was a bit of a pity that all those older reviews are lost, but hey, it's your call! :)

This is a wonderful introduction to our 1st person PoV character of this tale. The narration is very crisp in a matter-of-fact way.

I wonder if the dark-haired boy that caught Abigail's fancy near the end of the chapter is Sirius or Severus. There are also so many OCs that I need to memorize, lol.

And that was how my September had begun. With my life: as it had been, as it had begun to unravel.

I sense drama ahead. And also tragedy? No~ :(

Author's Response: Yeah :c I wish I had thought about that before I deleted the older version. There was a lot of voting in that version, though. But... yeah, good point :c

Yass! I was aiming for that tone :D and style. I'm still polishing my first person point of view lol.

I love how you came to the conclusion of it being Sirius or Severus. That was the whole point of the last version. This version will be more decisive on who she chooses and what'll happen alongside her choices.

Lol, don't worry about the OCs xD They'll pop up if they need to pop up. There are new ones this time around.

No tragedy is up ahead. Just some gritty reality.

Thank you for reviewing btw :D I wish I had kept the reviews from the last version xD Ah, well. We have these now, right? I'm not going to delete this version.

(Btw, you're the reason why I came back here to rework the fanfic and why I'm attempting to finish it. Thanks for reminding me xD)

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Review #11, by museclio Movement

9th July 2017:
Happy birthday, mines this month too :) I love this story, it's so odd. There's something very gothic, Jane austenish about Abby and the dialogue. It's very fun to read.

Author's Response: Oh snap! Mine's the 28th! When's yours? Oh, and I guess I must have slipped xD (you have guessed what's influenced my writing this month, lol!) Thank you so much, though. Your comment has made my afternoon ♥

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Review #12, by ChinaL9 Collaborations

8th June 2017:
I adore this story! I especially love Severus. I don't even know, I just love everything! You're an awesome writer. Do you have a set day when you update?

Author's Response: Aw, thank you! ♥ I'm glad that you're enjoying the story so far. As for having a set day when I update: I'm thinking about updating every two weeks. ^^ I don't have a set day yet... it just depends on how each chapter develops.

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Review #13, by veila Planning

26th October 2015:
I am really excited for this story, I have a feeling that it's going to be good! :)

Author's Response: Let's hope so; it's a rewrite from a longer set of chapters I had before. ;) Thanks for reading and reviewing, though ^___^

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Review #14, by SiaBlack Planning

18th October 2015:
Looking forward to the next chapter! I love how its begun. Do update soon!

Author's Response: Thank you! I will try my best! :D

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