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Of Wolf and Man by Padfoot11333

Rated: 3rd-5th Years •

At the end, Remus reflects.

This was originally titled It's oh so quiet and was written in Secret Spew VII for the fabulous Sophie / The owl.

Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 01/01/13 Title: Chapter 1: (for luck)

I have arrived with the review I promised days ago, however crappy it may be. :)

I honestly really liked this, Lily. It developed really nicely, and I have to say the kiss from Sirius was a shock. I was thoroughly prepared for Remus to have it be unrequited. [:(] I have to admit I basically squeed when I found out it wasn't so.

The characterization was great, Lily. Remus's logic and just way of thinking (as well as self-pity) was shockingly accurate, as was Sirius's impulsive way. But my favorite person in this was probably Lily. I remember a quote from PoA, when Remus is talking to Harry, and it says she sees the best in people, and didn't judge (or something of the sort). I could really see her here; she's shocked, but she still keeps a somewhat calm exterior. :)

But I just want to give Remus a hug. His time with Sirius was so short, but I guess we all knew that would happen. Still had to hope for a bit of AU for a happy ending.

I did have one small quibble: I don't like how you had Tonks/Remus in this. I think that in canon, well, he'd have to be a really, really good actor to actually feel that way. Maybe she reminded him of Sirius? It probably could have stood better with just a little more explanation. The only other thing Icould say is that the ending is a little rushed.

Other than that ... great story, twin!

Author's Response:

But I had to keep it canooooon - although i get what you say about it being rushed and not detailed enough *sigh*

Maybe one day :D

thank youuuuuuu for the review, at any rate - i actually wasn't sure about Lily but I am super glad I managed to portray her correctly. (and i was in a happy mood when i wrote that, i suppose - hahah I'm not sure how i managed to fool myself into making Sirius in love with Remus BUTTTTT it will help me with my sirius/james)

Happy new year - I'm in an odd mood atm so sorry for the odd review response. Love youuuu

x Lily

Tea and Honey by Maple_and_PheonixFeather

Rated: 6th-7th Years • Past Featured Story
Summary: Sometimes, you just need a good wake up call to tell you that something is unhealthy. This is the story of how Louis manages to convince Lily that what she is doing isn't good for her.
Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 02/08/13 Title: Chapter 1: Honey and Tea

Hey, Maple. :)

This was probably one of my favorite pieces of yours to date. There was just so much depth to it, and I love your Louis and Lily. You jump right into the action, too, and even before their relationship progressed (and Louis’s feelings were revealed) you had me rooting for him instead of Sean. While on the topic, I really love how you gave us such a clear insight as to Sean and Lily’s relationship without ever showing it. Most of the time ‘in-action’ paints the best picture, but I love how much we could tell solely from the aftermath.

Probably one of the strongest parts of this piece was the characterization. It’s no secret that your Lily is lovely, but there was something slightly different about this version of her. While other times there were echoes of insecurity, this tackled the topic head-on. It was kind of shocking to see this obviously strong character so broken. We could tell she wasn’t a weak person, but hearing her say all those things about herself made me just want to give her a hug. Honestly, I think the most heartbreaking part of the piece was when Lily was drunk and had to explain herself to Louis; that she thought Louis was the only person she had a chance with because of what Sean had done to her. It goes to show just how one person can destroy another, even if they didn’t mean to.

This time, though, I think your Louis outshone Lily. He was just so patient, and he knew everything about her. It was the little quirks he remembered “ especially how Lily takes her tea “ that made him just seem so amazing. Lily just randomly shows up at his door, either drunk or bawling her eyes out, and he just understands. He kind of reminds me of Charlie from ‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower” in that sense. But Louis wasn’t perfect, and that made it even better. He did lose his temper with Lily, and we could see how much the situation was hurting him, too. One thing I did notice, though, was that there really were no hints of how he was feeling about fancying Lily, even though it was obvious throughout the piece. At the end he wishes she’d come back, but Louis seems like he always is, calm and sure. It would have added another level entirely to watch Louis’s feelings about Lily develop throughout the fic, and perhaps a little confusion. I’m just not sure that even someone like Louis could realize he fancies his cousin without any kind of internal turmoil. But perhaps that is grounds for a sequel? :)

I did really love how the story progressed, though. We can see both of their pain, and you slowly build it up to a fever pitch. Rereading it, I saw hints of Louis slowly getting angry about how Lily is treating herself, and how, though it’s a jump in time, we see Louis’s first pieces of advice slowly sink into Lily. But when Lily was drunk, we knew that the slight hints of anger that Louis tried to hide would finally bubble to the surface. The only thing I noticed is that perhaps a middle section could help this piece; it starts with it seemingly be horrible, but Lily unwilling to leave Sean, but then suddenly she did dump him and showed up drunk on Louis’s doorstep. Lily didn’t seem to believe Louis when he tried telling her that her relationship with Sean wasn’t good for her, but it didn’t look like Lily was listening. I think it could explain a final push to break it off with Sean, show why she finally realized Sean was, for lack of a better word, destroying her. The jump from the first part to the second part just seemed a little large to me, which is why I suggested a median. It’s merely an idea, though. :)

I really did love this piece, though, Maple. I know Lily needs time to sort herself out, but I just want her to be with Louis. The end gives me hope for them, however, as well as making me want to read more about them. I would love to see a companion piece, as the thought of them together just makes me smile. You did a brilliant job handling Lily’s insecurities, and I want to see if she manages to fully overcome them. Overall, just a lovely piece.


Author's Response: Thanks for the great review, Ellie! I'm so glad that I was able to make the characterisation of this piece believable. That was something I was a little worried about given how unsure I was of a lot of the plot. You pointed out a lot of interesting themes associated with her that I had never even thought about! Like the insecurity and the brokenness. Like, I knew she was insecure and a little shaken up, but I didn't realise that it would resonate with anyone, if that makes sense. I think I agree with the jump between the parts. I think I just couldn't see a scenario in my head (plus, I was like, three days over the due date and only had an intro paragraph ahaha). I think that if I were to rewrite this, I would definitely add one, and it's something I will be looking for in my other fics! Maple :)

You Can Write The Book by teh tarik

Rated: 6th-7th Years • Past Featured Story

That's what Colin's pictures do to you - they make strange folks out of the people you know.

Colin has an eye for detail. So does Dennis.
Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 07/17/13 Title: Chapter 1: it's all in the details

Hey, Nicole!

I don’t know what I expected when I clicked this piece, but I am thoroughly amazed. We all know about Colin and his camera, but this reaches beyond that. The level of detail regarding every picture taken - the thought that went into every one of his actions - was beautifully stated, without being over the top.

One of the most interesting aspects of this piece was the style. It’s written in a narrative from Dennis’s point of view, which added to how bluntly and painfully everything was said. I loved how at some points, it sounded like he was talking to Colin, while at others it seemed more for his own understanding. It allowed for all of the brilliant ideas to be stated without seeming over-dramatic or overdone; on the contrary, I think it’s the understatement of everything that makes it so great. It’s a mish-mash of childhood stories, but it’s so incredibly bittersweet because of the information we all know at the beginning: this isn’t just about a boy with a camera, but a reflection on the only thing Dennis will ever have with his brother - the past. I also loved how some parts were choppier while others seemed to flow more smoothly - it alerted us, as readers, to where Dennis was either struggling to describe something or struggling with his own emotions. One thing I might say, though, is that you tend to use a good amount of ‘-‘s, especially when Dennis is excited. It can distract from the flow, and it’s just something to look out for. :)

Dennis. Oh, he is a far cry from the excited younger brother we always see in the books. He’s remorseful, but even though he talks all about his brother’s eye for detail, he possesses an incredible one of his own. Often in stories we see characters forget as time passes, but if anything Colin seems sharper to Dennis. He’s constantly noticing new things, even if he doesn’t necessarily want to. I also love how you distinctly made Dennis, though this piece isn’t about him really, seem different from Colin. Where Colin constantly finds meaning and beauty in everything around him (even if it isn’t at all), Dennis is left wondering why. He doesn’t understand fully, until it’s too late and all he can do is stare at the pictures his brother took.

The photography aspect of this piece was done incredibly well. You manage to describe what they all are so vividly, while never truly talking about what they entail, unless it means something to Colin. I also really liked how it felt like most of Colin’s pictures didn’t turn out, whether they were blurry or the lighting was bad or something. Because Colin kept them, and therefore let us see them. It’s easy to simply stick Colin behind the camera and call it canon, but you interwove the camera into everything that he did.

The ending was very brief, and said something I found incredibly poignant. Colin was always the one behind the camera, and in the entire story until that point, he hadn’t appeared in one photograph. And when he finally did, Colin was hidden - tucked under the arm of someone else. That was the price he paid for his fascination with the pictures. He was always the one behind the camera, instead of ever being in it. And with his life being so short, there was no opportunity for someone to eventually realize this and shove him into a few later.

Overall, I thought this was brilliant. It was a great character study, and extremely poignant and thought-out. I think the saddest part was that it was a story of Colin’s childhood, and we knew he’d never reach adulthood. Nothing was overstated, and it felt very minimalistic, compared to overdramatic. The entire piece made me feel like I was personally rifling through all of Colin’s photographs, and that’s a sort of intimacy that’s hard to reach. Brilliant job!


Forget Me Not by BrokenPromise

Rated: 1st-2nd Years •

Sybil Trelawney and Quirinus Quirrell: the Seer fallen to teaching and her bright young thing. Of course they never meant to fall in love. But they did, and so here is that story.

This is BrokenPromise of Ravenclaw, writing for the Great Hall Cotillion 2013.

Thanks to Sophie (the owl), who looked over some of this for me.

Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 07/17/13 Title: Chapter 1: My Blue-Eyed Boy

Hello, BP!

This was an interesting piece. I never would have thought of shipping Quirrell and Trelawney, and this was an interesting take on it. I love how it followed them both through their relationship, yet still managed to stay canon.

The style of this was quite different when given the characters you chose. It’d bounce back and forth between pure conversation and internal monologues, which I imagine were difficult. It’s hard to get into a character like Trelawney’s or Luna’s head and maintain a balance between in character and lucid, and Trelawney seemed very comprehensive in this. She’s quite perceptive, which is believable, but there was still that slight ignorance of the world around her, and it showed. I especially liked how time flitted, as for a character like Trelawney I imagine it would. The story was told rather quickly, and I would have liked to see some more of their actual romance, though. I think it could have been expanded slightly, and maybe use more descriptions to go with dialogue. Touches and certain looks can say a lot, and really make the chemistry seem real.

I thought the characterization of both Trelawney were interesting. I’ve never really seen her as a person who truly needs human contact, so it was different to see her so fixated on Quirrell, even when he was a student. She seemed extremely invested in every conversation she had with Quirrell, when in canon we generally see her go off into her own head more often. This could be a result of the years after he left, but it seemed slightly unlikely that she would completely focused. Quirrell was also shown very differently from what I’ve seen; I never really saw him being interested in Divination. He seemed completely geared towards DADA, though without the experience. I think you showed his fear quite well, and I thought his ambitions to be an Auror were a nice touch, but his fascination with the subject seemed slightly off. His O.W.L. and N.E.W.T. marks did make it seem more believable, though.

One of the most intriguing pieces of this was the relationship. Not only was it borderline Student/Teacher, I would never have even thought of this ship. You took two characters on the complete opposite end of the spectrum and somehow got them together. I loved how their love was slightly like Marius and Cosette in Les Mis: they weren’t very focused on physicality, and they simply got lost in their thoughts of each other. It was very sweet, especially the letters, and a far cry from how we see him in Philosopher’s Stone. But because of their pure innocence, it made him falling prey to Voldemort so much more believable, though it did leave me to question their romance. Up until they got together, they seemed to have a very professional relationship, and then suddenly… they got together. I loved how impulsive it was, but it did seem a little unlikely to me.

I really liked the touch at the ending, about why Sybil was fighting. That was always a mystery to me, and this provided a nice explanation, while pulling it all together. She lost the only person she’d ever truly cared about to Voldemort, and now she was fighting to save others. There’s something so noble about that, and it just fit Trelawney for me. I also adored the explanation of her death obsession, because of the impact he’d left.

Overall, it was very interesting, and I commend you for taking on such a dangerous pairing. Keep it up!


Author's Response: Wow, has it really been 2 years since I wrote this story? Time does fly. Anyway, Ellie, if you’re still around, I’m sorry I never replied to this review. I think I was a little intimidated by how comprehensive it was. Both characters were a little difficult to write, and yes, in hindsight, the story is quick and perhaps lacking in chemistry. I think I was fixated on the idea of the pairing and just wanted to let other people see the possibility, however implausibly I’ve managed to present it. My personal ideas of the characters combined with not really wanting to read the books again probably led to the slightly off characterisation. I just felt that these two characters were so sidelined as crazy teachers that they needed more – they both needed someone to love them and care about them. I jumped on to this tiny little pedal boat when I realised they both seemed connected with the colour purple in the films. That’s why the title is forget-me-not: once Quirrell pressed flowers, these tiny blue-purple wildflowers would not leave me alone. Thank you for your review, and again, I am sorry for not replying these 2 years. I appreciate your constructive criticism and hope that you enjoyed the story. - BP

One More Night by xxbabewithbrainsxx

Rated: Professors • Past Featured Story
Summary: Rose and Albus are forced to confront her changing relationship over the years, and Rose does not want to face the consequences.

This is babewithbrains of Ravenclaw writing for the Great Hall Valentine's Day Cotillion 2013.

This is a companion piece to I Will Lay Down My Heart, and though you don't have to have read that to understand this, you might want to if you want to know more about Albus and Rose's backstory ;)

This story has been nominated for a 2013 Quicksilver Quill Award: Best Next Generation. Thank you!
Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 02/08/13 Title: Chapter 1: Chapter 1

Hi, Soraya. :)

This was a lovely start. After reading ‘I Will Lay Down My Heart’, I was very curious as to how Albus and Rose managed to patch up their relationship after the first time. I can’t wait to see where this story goes, because I’m curious to see how Rose and Albus develop their relationship again, and how they destroy it again.

One of my favorite parts of the piece, though, was Lily. I loved her ‘no-nonsense’ attitude, and how she was so worried about Albus. Rose needed someone to remind her that there was another person being hurt by what was going on, and that someone needed to fix it. It makes me wonder a lot about how bad Albus’s mindset really was/is, because Lily didn’t seem like the type to fight other people’s fights, and it really made me think that the situation was bad. Also, I’m wonder how much of a role she - and specifically she and Louis - will play as the story continues.

I also really want to see how Rose develops into the person seen in the first of your Alrose’s. It was an interesting choice for a point of view for this story, especially because of how she treats Albus in the first piece. I’m intrigued by her mindset and why she hurts Albus the way we know she will. She tends to paint the situation to be Albus’s fault, and it’s interesting to watch the reality checks she is given, and how the truth is slowly being revealed. I also love how at the mere mention of his name Rose tensed up. It’s clear that they are both hurting and confused, but I am really drawn in by the idea that the protagonist is, in fact, the villain. Or is she? One thing I might be careful of, though, would be that sometimes Roses switches between detached and missing Albus a little quickly. I know she’s having an internal struggle, but it seemed a little too quickly, especially in the paragraphs right before the first line break.

One of the only things I can say about Albus is that I want to give him a hug. There’s just so much that’s going on with him, and he’s finally reached the point where can’t take it anymore. I especially loved all of the mentions of his eyes, of how empty they were, and just having Rose back in his life brought some brightness back to them. Part of me wonders how long it will take for them to hurt each other all over again and part wonders why he forgave her so quickly, or his lack of anger.

Something that stuck out to me was the brief interaction between James and Albus. I was surprised that James was being that harsh, when he could obviously tell that there was something wrong with Albus. It added to the image of Albus really just having it horribly rough, and I think it gave Rose the final push to talk to him. The encounter did make me wonder about James and Albus’s relationship, though. Part of me wants to believe that James is just really focused on Quidditch, and Albus was playing horribly, but part of me isn’t so sure. Albus didn’t need James beating on him, too, and it was clear James knew that. I found it shocking, and it felt like maybe their relationship isn’t great. I really hope to see it develop in later chapters, and for it to be explored more.

While I love how complex all of the characters and their relations are, I might watch how many you include in the story. The basic core is Albus and Rose, and sometimes involving too many characters can become a handful to manage and can detract from the core. That’s honestly one of the trickiest things of cousin pairings, at least for me- dealing with everyone else in the family. I’m really curious to see what will happen, and if Lily and James will ever truly find out what’s going on between Albus and Rose.

I can’t wait for the next chapter, but part of me doesn’t want to see it. It’s like Oedipus Rex; we all know what will eventually happen, but it doesn’t mean we don’t want to stop it from happening. The title particularly scares me in that aspect, because if the song echoes the theme of the story… I just want Albus and Rose to be together. I know Scorpius will come into the picture, but I honestly don’t know if Albus can handle being hurt again. Overall, this was a lovely start, and I really can’t wait to see what happens next. ‘I Will Lay Down My Heart’ is one of my favorite fics on the site, and it is what made me consider Albus/Rose, so I am anxiously awaiting the next part of this. Best of luck in the Cotillion!


Author's Response: Ellieeeeeee! I am so sorry for taking so long to respond D: Your review is far too fabulous and left me gobsmacked, really, hence why the late reply.

Honestly? When I first wrote I Will Lay Down My Heart, I didn't know exactly how it would be possible for them to patch up their relationship after the first time, so it was interesting writing about it. It was also nice writing more about Scorpius, though, because I think this is far more an angsty love triangle than in I Will Lay Down My Heart... and you know how much I love mah love triangles :3

Yaaaaay, you liked Lily! :D Mm, she isn't in this much. I think I just needed someone to get them to be friends again, and James was unlikely to after giving Albus such a hard time on the pitch. So Lily it was ;) But her role in this story is pretty minor, really.

I think I needed to have Rose's POV in this story. She was a right byotch in Blood and Roses, and she wasn't exactly sympathetic in I Will Lay Down My Heart, so I totally get why you felt you needed to see her mindset, and I hope I succeeded in conveying that mindset later on. One thing's for sure, though -- Rose isn't the villain :) There really isn't a villain in this at all, because all three parties have their flaws and awkward moments. In the case of Rose, yeah, she goes through being detached and missing Albus quickly, but this is, as you said, because of the whole internal struggle thing. I deliberately played around with her mindset there regarding Albus.

Aww, I'm glad my Albus is huggable! I love him too, and I felt so wibbly for hiim in a couple of scenes later on (which you'll see if/when you review the other chapters) that this one is nothing, hehe. Oh, and I know, ha, that I mention Albus's eyes a lot, but I am really glad you liked all the references. As for why Albus forgave her so quickly and his complete lack of anger as far as Scorpius is concerned, this is far more because he, at this point, lusts after her and wants above all to please her. Later, when he realises he is genuinely in love with her, that continues.

Ooh, it's interesting you picked up on the James and Albus scene. I know, James is rather harsh here, but he has his reasons. My reason, anyway, is that James is generally a lighthearted person, only ever becoming serious when it came to Quidditch -- hence why he gave Albus a hard time but then jokes with Rose in the next chapter.

Haha, I generally don't think of my Loulily canon in comparison to my canon for AlRose. Either way, I think this could only truly be an issue if there was headhopping taking place -- that is, the constant changes of POV, especially in respect to, say, Loulily happening in one room of the Burrow and AlRose happening in another. Nah, I think I'd prefer to just -- not ignore Loulily, but just to keep it out of the equations, if that makes sense?

I don't know much about Oedipus Rex, but I do know it's a tragedy. I guess this is too, haha, although to a lesser extent, I guess, plus you've actually read I Will Lay Down My Heart.

Thank youuuu for the fabulous review, and apologies again for responding so late :/

Soraya xxx

Marriage and Other Matters by Acacia Carter

Rated: 3rd-5th Years • Past Featured Story
Summary: All Augusta wanted to do was apologise, but the minute she opened her mouth she somehow forgot how.
Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 03/16/13 Title: Chapter 1: One-Shot

Hey, Jamie. :)

When I first saw the pairing you chose, I was hesitant to read this piece. It was an idea I had never even considered - especially with the new Pottermore information - but you did it really well. There was just something about the way Augusta and Minerva interact that showed their relationship without really outwardly saying it.

One of my favorite aspects about this piece was how you managed to take two fairly rigid characters from canon and write them younger and carefree, but still maintaining their characters. It was such a lovely insight into how perhaps they became the way they were, through both relationships each of them grew into the people we see in canon. It was a bit shocking to see that sort of Augusta, I’ll have to admit, but I really enjoyed it. It was in the way that she spoke, that you could tell she cared so dearly for Minerva, but the slight coldness because of her hurt that let me know it was still her, but in a really refreshing way. The moment I gained the most respect for Augusta was when she said it was her duty to marry, because it shows the fiercely loyal side that she shares with her grandson. Minerva, too, as we could see her internal battle with logic saying that this meeting was a bad idea and how she truly felt. It really shone through when they were talking about Augusta’s engagement, and how perceptive Minerva was regarding the exact meaning behind Augusta’s complacency with her marital position.

I really loved the style of this, too. Though the banter was mainly light and polite, I could sense all of the undertones of hurt and lingering feelings of Minerva and Augusta’s relationship. It slowly built, too, until everything is finally out in the open. I would have really loved to see more of their relationship before it was broken, because (especially at the beginning) I wasn’t convinced of their relationship, It’s so difficult to show all of the feelings from the present of the relationship when so many are blocking them when it’s told from a hindsight perspective, and I would have loved to see some heat of the moment. I did love what we did see, though; the arm touching, especially, because it showed the lingering spark.

I thought it was odd (in a good way) how they were never really bitter toward each other, yet they still wouldn’t reconcile. It was like it was their older selves bickering about something, but they were still close friends, and it was really just cool to be able to see that kind of relationship that can survive literally everything. They knew each other so well, so it was as if they simply couldn’t stay away (even a platonic way) for long. They just needed each other in any way they could, and every relationship can’t last, especially given the historical context. I just found it rare and nice how despite all that happened between them, it didn’t completely fall apart.

The part that shocked me was the ending, because of how Minerva and Augusta’s relationship was practically the same it had been since before the time jump, and because of the parallel between Neville and Hannah and what she and Minerva could have been. It really shows how Augusta maybe regretted not staying with Minerva, and how she believes in marriage for love. It was just an overall really sweet ending that wrapped everything up really nicely.

Overall, I thought it was a lovely fic, and though I had no idea what to expect with this pairing, it was a truly great piece. The banter and under tones were perfect, and I could easily see this happening in canon with the brilliant versions of these characters you’ve created. I can’t wait to see more of your writing, Jamie! :)


As I Lay Me Down to Sleep by ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor

Rated: 6th-7th Years • Past Featured Story
Summary: Everyone gets picked on at school here and there; Albus Potter knew that. But when the situation with his own personal bully took a nasty turn, Albus found himself in a situation that was spiralling out of his control. Did his desperate effort to regain his peace of mind bring his world down around his ears?

This story has been nominated for a 2013 Quicksilver Quill Award: Best Next Generation Story.

Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 02/28/13 Title: Chapter 1: Chapter 1

I really should have reviewed this a long time ago, but I still don't think I can form coherent thoughts.

It's just so different, and (as I absolutely adore this ship) I wondered ever since I saw the drabble what else was to come. I felt so horrible for Albus during the entire thing; to be driven to the point where he needs the potion, then to become addicted... :( It made me easily begin to hate Scorpius, but I'm so glad he realized what an arse he'd been by the end. It's just sad to see that it took a horrible detox to a highly addictive potion for Scorpius to realize what he's done.

There's so much more I want to say, but this was just a;sdlkfjas;dfkljsaf;af and lovely and perfect and just so unique I can't really wrap my head around it. I can't tell you how much I love it; the ship, the way it was written, everything. It's a completely different take on Albus as well as Scorpius, and I adore it and major

Author's Response:

Of anyone who's read this, I'm the most glad that you like this story. At first, I had no idea how you would react, since it was about as romantic as a date to Burger King. However, I pushed on anyway, because I hoped that you would enjoy story and substance more than a haphazard get-together.

Teenage boys are stupid and thoughtless; I'm sure you know this well enough. They don't always mean to be cruel, but they do, and things like this happen as a result. With yet more teenage-boys-are-stupid-and-thoughtless, Albus put himself into a terrible position instead of simply standing up for himself or talking to the right people.

I think I'm most proud of Albus, because more than any other version of him I've done, he reminds me the most of the hesitant boy in the Epilogue, the one who is afraid to not meet expectations. He doesn't want to be weak or at Malfoy's mercy, yet in his efforts to hide his anger at what Scorpius had done, he did just that. Poor guy. :/

Making Scorpius into a bad guy was never an option. Yes, he's an antagonist and the primary source of the protagonist's angst, but it doesn't make him a bad person, but more of a bad decision-maker. And he realises this. You see that there is good in him because he doesn't want to hurt people. It's only a matter of him seeing that he had done and making the appropriate steps to try to repair the damage he'd caused. It was almost a relief to write the ending scene, because while they might not be best friends after this, I think they will both have a renewed respect for the other, as well as a change of preconception.

Anyway, thanks for visiting, and I'm glad you liked the story. :3


Seven by Gmariam

Rated: 6th-7th Years • Past Featured Story
Summary: Peter Pettigrew is far more complex than anyone gives him credit for. And that's all he wants, from anyone and especially from her: acknowledgement. Love. Respect. Yet unlike them, he was willing to do anything for it, including sacrificing it all.
This is Gmariam of Ravenclaw writing for the Great Hall Cotillion of 2013.
Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 03/15/13 Title: Chapter 1: Seven

Hi, Gina. :)

I think Peter is a fascinating character, and I think you portrayed him brilliantly throughout the piece. It was interesting to enter his mind, especially during this period of his life, when he’s stuck between the two drastically different groups. Generally, we never get to see Peter’s side, and I really loved that about the piece.

One of my favorite parts of this story was the style. It was a really interesting choice using second person, but I think it wouldn’t have been as poignant if it had been in any other way. It shows Peter’s coldness at heart while still making him human, and I don’t think it could have worked in first person because of the fact that it would have to be from Peter (who wouldn’t think he was horrible), and third wouldn’t allow the glimpse into his mind. I also loved how at the beginning it was ordinary actions, but the style and way you wrote it showed the darker meaning and ending even from there; Peter’s slight detachment and small things, and slowly they start piling up until the ending.

I think Peter is probably the most difficult Marauder to write, but I think you handled him brilliantly. There was so much depth to his character; we see lingering attachment for the people he cares, or cared, about, but also we can see the slow descent into losing his identification entirely with the Order and his ‘old’ life. In the best way to phrase this, Peter was horrible in this, in the type that makes my skin crawl with hate for him. The thing that stuck out the most to me was the double standard with Marlene, that he could fool around with other people (and not ever mention it), but when she cheated once he was angry to the point of ordering her death. It was slightly confusing at times, because there were points I could believe Peter genuinely felt something for Dorcas, but other times I was convinced of this entirely cold, brilliant, and just insidious character that you’ve built for Peter., one I can easily see fitting into canon seamlessly. One small note, though: two lines before part four you accidently pluralized a word that shouldn’t be.

Regarding Peter’s relationship with Dorcas, I found it odd in a fascinating way. Because of how unfeeling and empty this Peter is, even in the beginning, I wondered how you would make a relationship even possible for someone like that, but you did. While their relationship was mainly physical, I got the sense that part of him genuinely did care for her, at least for a while, but at the same time she was an aspect of control in his life, an esteem booster. It really showed Peter’s conflict, and because of that in the first part it reminded me a lot of the song ‘Little Lion Man’ by Mumford and Sons. As time went on, though, I could see the changes start happening within Peter, and knew that on his side his ability to feel even remotely connected to someone was fading, much less romantically. Dorcas cheating was the final straw it seemed, and I knew something horrible was going to happen.

On that note, I believe that your ending was both amazing and horrifying at the same time, one of my favorite combinations. As soon as I read the break up, I suddenly knew what would happen, and that honestly scared me. It shows exactly how broken Peter was, and that any remainder of even the person at the beginning of the piece was gone. I didn’t want to believe that he would actually consciously make the effort to have a girl that he knew, and perhaps had the potential to care really dearly for, killed. I did find it odd that he said ‘the Dark Lord’ was the one to kill her, as I thought it would be a tip off to the Order that he was traitorous.

Overall, though, I really enjoyed this piece. It was a brilliant and unique insight into an extremely difficult character, and if you ever write more of Peter I will definitely read it. :)


Author's Response: Ellliiiieeee! Thank you so much! Slowly but surely my sad little story is getting read, lol. Although I totally understand why people are scared, to be sure. Thank you so much for choosing it to SPEW. I don't even know how to respond. I'm glad you braved it and mostly enjoyed it, or at least found it well done since he really is a rat so there isn't much to enjoy. Let's see…the second person just popped out. I don't know if I could have written this particular Peter in any other way. And this particular Peter is unusual for me, because when I include him in Marauder stories I don't usually make him so awful. I usually think there must have been something decent in him for the others to like him and trust him. But writing this changed my mind. I really hated him writing this. Maybe second person was the best way to detach myself from it. As for his depth of character…well, in a way. I see him as pretty much all bad by this point. I think real depth would have been giving him some sense of remorse, and I didn't do that here, on purpose. He's already gone by this point. As for the confusion about his feelings for Dorcas…he was lonely, I'll give him that. So he liked her…but not enough to stay faithful, or regret her death. I'll check into that typo, lol. I'm glad you saw the ending coming - that means the story lead to it properly. Yes, it is a bit horrifying, isn't it? To think that not only did he do this to James and Lily, but to a woman he cared about and lived with? Ugh, what an awful human being he was. I had him say the Dark Lord because that's what the Death Eaters called him. Yes, it should have been a tip off, shouldn't it? He slipped. I don't tend to write a lot of people - sometimes I leave him out on purpose - but occasionally I will include him in Marauder stories, but again: he's different than this Peter, because I hate this Peter, and most of the time I think there had to be something better to him than this. Or maybe not. Writing this was not actually fun. I'm curious if you noticed anything about the title and the seven sections. I'm really hoping someone does, otherwise I worked too hard for too little result, haha. But either way - thank you so much for the review!! Yayay!! ~Gina :)

Portraits: Dudley Dursley by Alice in Potterland

Rated: 1st-2nd Years • Past Featured Story
Summary: Dudley Dursley makes a speech to honor the world's most famous wizard.
Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 06/15/13 Title: Chapter 1: A Muggle's Address

Hi, Kimmie.

I thought this was truly interesting, especially in terms of style. I’d never really thought about what happened to Dudley, or more specifically Harry and Dudley, after the seventh book, and I think this was simply a lovely take on that. Between the dark overtone of the entire piece and Dudley’s awkward displays of affection, this was a perfect summation of their relationship.

One of the most intriguing bits of this piece was the narrative style. It’s all just Dudley talking, but it made it so much more potent. We were able to see the places where he stumbled, trying to find the right words, and where they just poured out as Dudley remembered someone we learn he truly admired. I especially love how it sounds just like a monologue, from him cutting himself off as he starts to go off on tangents to where he can’t bring himself to talk about his deceased wife. I also think that it kept the story from being too emotional for a character like Dudley. It sounded real and genuine, with all the mess-ups that come with normal public speaking, especially at a funeral. It made Dudley’s grief rawer, but still managed to make it sound like him. It was a risky style, but it definitely paid off, especially in its short form. It’s a short summation of how much they’ve both grown, but I liked that.

I honestly just wanted to give Dudley a huge hug in this, which is something I don’t normally say. I loved how we could sense his awkwardness and anxiety in the beginning, but slowly the pauses and stumbling stopped as he told the story. The brief mentions of his wife, too, because in times of grief he would be reminded of the other one he lost, even though he tries to cover that up. There were so many little touches I just loved; Dudley not knowing when magic was in place, and how he named his son after Harry, and how he would put in the awkward laugh everyone knows happens. It made him seem so real, even as he talked about all the horrible things he wouldn’t. It was how we can truly see Dudley’s regret as he talks about his childhood, but also how grateful he is, that we can believe they truly made friends with him. I also loved how he admitted he wasn’t there, and said he was jealous of Harry’s friends from school. There was also the slight hint of idolization, which we saw the beginnings of in Deathly Hallows, and I love the idea that Harry, who Dudley once despised, became the person he looked up to the most.

Even though Harry wasn’t technically a character in this, I could still feel his presence. The slight touches, like ‘Thanks for helping my boy with all that wizard stuff, when I had no clue”, and how he died still fighting darkness just seemed to fit. Even after everything he went through as a child, once Dudley took the first few steps he was willing to let him back into his life, completely forgiven. He was the only one there for Dudley when his wife died, and he just refused to not see the good in Dudley, still believed in second chances. It was in the little things that we got from their story that just fit so perfectly into the Harry we see in the books, especially at his own funeral. I am interested in how he died, exactly. I think it was just being an Auror, but that would be an interesting idea to explore, because Harry would be almost clueless.

Another thing I truly liked was the inclusion of Danny and Albus’s friendship. While it was subtle, rereading it I realized just how much these two becoming friends did for Harry and Dudley. It was the final push for them to truly reconcile, and as we saw, that made a world of difference for Dudley. It was only mentioned briefly, but now I’m drawn to the idea of this being the tipping point in their relationship. It leaves Danny almost as a Scorpius Malfoy in other fics, and I like how the idea carried over. If you ever decide to delve more into their story, (or already have) I would love to know about it.

The entire setting for the piece intrigued me. I know I would never have thought of writing a piece from Dudley’s perspective at Harry’s funeral. It left a darker undertone throughout the entire fic, and it made Dudley’s admissions feel so much more real. It made it so it was a ‘now or never’ moment, and it really made Dudley, a normally quite non-emotional character, open up. It made the little draw-aways from the main point, especially when he mentioned the Weasleys, ring true, and not just as a necessary connection. It fit so well with what Dudley was saying, and it made me wonder just how much he realized for himself before Harry died, or if these was mostly new feelings for him, too. It also made me wonder what other people had to say about him, especially long after Voldemort died.

Honestly, my favorite part was the ending. You spent so much time working up this beautiful prose, such a lovely narrative, and then the last line hit me like a ton of bricks. “You’re not - oh, damn it, you sodding prick, you’re not a waste of space. You’re the best person who’s ever lived. Good-bye, mate. And thank you.” For the risk of fangirling, this is just such a perfect line. I can picture Harry, wherever he went, laughing and crying at the same time, because he would understand what Dudley was trying to say. The first goodbye mirrors the second, though they’re years apart and under such different circumstances. It was the perfect way to tie up the piece, and a brilliant way to find resolution for Dudley.

This was a brilliant piece. A great character study, and an even greater story of how much Dudley, and Harry, grew over the course of their lives. Brilliant job, unique style, and just lovely overall. Keep it up!


Author's Response: Words cannot express how grateful I am to see this! I'm so glad you liked the story and took the time to write such a beautiful review!! Responses like this are what make me want to keep writing and now I've got a couple ideas to maybe expand the post-prologue Dudley/Harry story a bit more, which I didn't actually plan to do. I hope you'll keep reading and I will now always look forward to your reviews, should you choose to write them! Thanks so, so much!! :D

Underneath the Shadows by Ginny Weasley Potter

Rated: 6th-7th Years •
Summary: Rose finds out a few things about Scorpius and is not sure that she wants to continue her relationship with him.

(Companion fic to 'Battered Heart', written for the Milestone Celebrations. However, both fics can be read independently.)
Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 05/15/13 Title: Chapter 1: One-shot

Hey, Pooja!

I can’t believe I haven’t read this until now. It provides a very interesting look into Rose and Scorpius’s relationship, as well as the opinions others had on their relationship. I loved how it started out relatively happy and fluffy, but then the cracks appeared, and by the end it had descended into complete brokenness. It showed great progression, and showed all of the faults and wonders of each character, Rose and Scorpius especially.

I thought the style choice here was interesting. It alternates between description and dialogue, which gives the reader a nice break from both, and it simply flowed nicely. We could see where Rose was more lost in thought, and where she was completely attentive to the scene. I also loved how it sounded like a teenager; the language wasn’t too poetic or too plain… it was just like she was talking to us. I thought that was really cool (for lack of a better word).

The characterization in this piece was certainly interesting, Rose and Scorpius especially. I loved how we saw all of Scorpius’s faults at once - his teasing of Rose, his mistakes early in their relationship - but also his strong points. I had suspicions from the moment that Hugo said he beat up that Matt kid that he had done something horrible, and I was right. I just loved seeing Scorpius’s dedication to his cousin, because it was obvious he felt the same about Rose (except in a romantic way). It shows itself beautifully at the end, when he refuses to let her walk away. On Rose: I think you really captured a teenage girl’s reaction brilliantly in the piece; she’s completely devoted to Scorpius, but slowly she learns things she doesn’t want to, and eventually it all breaks at once. I could see her forgive him for one or two mistakes, but once it hit three she was done. But she didn’t scream at him, and I thought that was great. Especially with a relationship so drama-packed at the moment (perhaps too dramatic with the multitude of mistakes Scorpius made at times), I love how Rose truly kept her head until they were alone. It said a lot about her character, and how much she loved Scorpius.

One of the most intriguing bits of this piece, though, was Hugo and his side-plot. While I confess I haven’t read his love triangle one-shot, he too is an incredibly complex character. At first, I thought he was merely looking out for Rose, but then he became almost malicious. While it seemed slightly unlikely Hugo knew all of that about Scorpius, you explained it with his family and friend connections. And after hating him for doing that to Scorpius and Rose, I felt sorry for him again. The love triangle side plot was very interesting, and it explained all of his motives. He’s in love with someone in love with a bad person, and if Annie and Matt do ever get together, he’s going to be in for a rough time. Honestly, I can’t decide whether or not I like this Hugo, but that’s a good thing, I suppose. He’s incredibly well-rounded, and he fit both the victim and the villain in this, which is definitely hard to do.

My absolute favourite part, though, was the ending. After everything was shattered in pieces, Rose and Scorpius still managed to pull through. It honestly said so much about their relationship, and I adored how Scorpius kept repeating ‘I love you’. He was desperately clinging to the hope they could work it out, and I love how he wouldn’t give up. It proved he was good after all, even after everything was revealed. I especially loved this: “Say that again,” she breathed, shutting her eyes and feeling his wet forehead against hers. The rain was still pouring down in torrents, and for a while, as they stood like that, foreheads connected, and hands held, the sounds of the rains seemed to be the only sounds all around.” There’s just something incredibly powerful about that moment, how they weren’t kissing but it was so incredibly intimate. It was just beautiful.

Overall, I just really enjoyed this piece. It was an interesting and complex dynamic between the three main players, and it was hard to pick out who was at fault at times, which I enjoyed. The world isn’t black and white, after all. Thank you so much for being an incredible SPEW buddy, and I hope to see more of this canon from you. :)


Author's Response: Hey Ellie!

Sorry I took so long to respond to this, but gah, this review! I was so, so happy when you posted it, and re-reading it now brings all that happiness back and wow, thank you so, so much! :)

I should probably say something awesome and intelligent at this point about my writing process, but nothing is ever going to match up to that review. I will be honest, though -- I didn't plan any of that. I just knew the plot, and I wrote as it flowed. I usually pay more attention to my writing style and everything, but I really hurried with this fic (I think I just managed to finish it on time for the deadline). So the dialogue-description alternation is a coincidence, hahaha! Nothing makes me gladder, though, that you perceived it that way, and that it worked. I guess, sometimes you've just got to write on a whim, eh? :)

A lot of what Scorpius did is based on a lot of relationships I've seen. Well, all the guys didn't do exactly what Scorpy did in this one, but... you get the gist, don't you? And I just wonder, how after so many mistakes, so many problems, people still manage to maintain their relationships. We often react to someone's character flaws in ways we shouldn't, without understanding the reason behind those, and that is what is happening here. I had Hugo be protective of his sister, but also have another reason to hate Scorpius -- that he indirectly hurt the girl he was in love with. As for Rose, I matured her a little -- I don't think she's the type to create a scene in front of everybody anyway, plus I wanted rain-kissing, ha, so I got her to walk away and then break apart later on. :p

The Hugo thing is a whole other story, haha. I wrote that one first, actually, and then wound this around that. If you must know, things do go badly for Hugo. Annie chooses Matt, not realising Hugo loves her, and well, that story is about exactly how much Hugo has to struggle when the girl he loves is with the worst guy anyone can think of. You should really pity this Hugo. He's looking out for his sister, and he doesn't have any malicious thoughts while he's doing what he doing. He doesn't even get anything at the end of it all. The poor kid. :(

I often write my Scorpiuses as stubborn prats, and I love writing him like that, haha. The rain-kissing, the 'I love yous' were for pure fluff, as this was a Love Note for Nadia, only improvised some, and I think the candy heart was the rain kiss. And she adores ScoRose, so I thought she'd like some fluff for them. :)

I am so, so glad you enjoyed it! I usually aim specifically at giving my characters their flaws, I suppose, because I have a phobia for Mary-Sues, which may or may not be a good thing. Thank you so much for this wonderful, in-depth analysis of a fic I really wanted some feedback on, but hardly received. I am extremely sorry about the delay in my reply, but you should know that I loved your review, and thank you so, so much for this! :) <3

The Reclaiming by Misdemeanor1331

Rated: Professors •
Summary: It was just another reminder that what they were doing, the lives they were reclaiming, were the lives of people. Of the people each and every member of her group used to be. Hopeful. Determined. Human.
Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 06/15/13 Title: Chapter 1: The Reclaiming

Hello. :)

This piece shocked me almost the point of speechlessness. It was just so different, and while that can partially be blamed on the prompt, I think you handled it brilliantly. Everything from who was ‘chosen’, to the magic not working, to the ending… it was all so thoughtfully and meticulously planned out.

One really interesting aspect of the piece was the style. I liked how it was divided into three parts - and each part held such a different tone. First, the confusion and clarification, second the mindless following, and then last: the finale, the catharsis. In the end of the second there’s just a flicker of doubt, which leads seamlessly into the last part, and the flow was great despite the dramatic turns. I also found the dates intriguing, because of how close the timeline is to the real date. It’s hard to imagine that an apocalypse would start this month, but at the same time it adds something to the piece. The slight dredge of fear that this could actually happen, and how we see it only takes a few months for the entire world to disintegrate. Another thing that I found interesting was how you incorporated the omnipotent being ordering the destruction. It melds their thoughts with what’s happening, and it’s slightly jarring at times - especially when they don’t doubt at all the voice in their heads.

Because of the Alternate Universe-ness of this fic, the characterization was interesting, particularly with the ‘Claimants’. So much thought went into choosing the characters, no matter how brief or seemingly insignificant their parts were. Romilda, the communication; Terry, the magic expert; Hermione, the brilliant; Angelina, the impulsive; and Draco, the poisoner. I especially loved how Harry wasn’t involved, because it implied that while the Claimants were the best at killing, they were also too weak to resist the voice telling them to kill. Harry, having experience with voices, was able to resist, and started the resistance.

Hermione and Draco, and their not-quite-but-almost relationship especially intrigued me. In this, Hermione is different than I’ve ever seen her: cold and calculated, compared to the normally brimming with compassion. I think her intelligence was the strongest thing tying the canon and this version together, because otherwise I was slightly concerned that this was an OC with Hermione’s name. There were some points where she cracked, particularly when talking to Draco, but I wonder how someone painted as so strong in canon fell to the voice so quickly. It was like she’d accepted it, instead of always questioning things like she did in canon. I did like how glimmers of her did slip through the control of the voice, though, because it gave slight hope that she could stop this, only to have it crushed.

My favorite character in this was probably Draco, though, because he retained the most of himself. Always aloof in canon, but it’s been proven he’ll follow orders, even if he thinks they’re wrong. It felt like book seven again, when he doesn’t want to do it, but he isn’t strong enough to take control. It justifies why he was claimed, but also what they do at the end. He’s what ties this piece together, through all of what happens. However, I was still slightly apprehensive of his relationship with Hermione. While the Hermione in this is different from canon Hermione, it still felt as if their relationship was a little forced. Even though they were thrown into this situation together, both struck me as the type to try to find a solution or finish it quickly, without worrying about things. The conversation about their children helped ‘soften’ them, so to speak, but it still felt odd. The characters you created didn’t just didn’t seem to want to feel romantically for each other. This might be strengthened strong stance against the pairing, but I think the piece could have gone without it. It was a nice addition, but it added something to an already highly complicated piece. I did enjoy the ending, though, as it definitely seemed just very ‘Draco’. He kissed her after she died, but also acknowledged that even in a different world, it wouldn’t work out. It almost felt like ‘Romeo and Juliet’, with them being the last two alive, then committing suicide. A perfectly tragic ending to the end of a tragic piece.

In terms of the prompt and the piece, the most surprising thing for me was the ‘god’, or whatever it can be called. Why, suddenly, would a voice appear in the people best equipped to exterminate the world and tell them to do it? Why would they listen? I like how you have him almost possess the Claimants, because in canon they’re (mostly) considered the ‘good guys’. I think he was the perfect antagonist, because it made the people appear to be nothing more than chess pieces, tools. He made them aware, though, and I love how that fear came through at the end, because they, too, had to die, even if they were ‘claimed’. It’s hard to incorporate a religious aspect in a piece involving magic, because of how much they clash in history, but I think you handled it well. It wasn’t worshipped; it was just an evil force controlling everyone. On that topic, I know the prompt explains why this happens, but I would have loved to actually see it in the piece. Even if it’s just a sentence or two at the beginning, explaining the corruption of the world. It would validate the piece as well as free it from having to be supported by the prompt.

There was something extra you added to the prompt that I absolutely loved: you took away the wizard’s magic. While I don’t know how that’s possible, as the roots of why magic exists is something not generally discussed, it added to the gore of this. It forced the Claimants and the Resistance to do things the ‘messy’ way: there was no way to hide the terribleness or the gore of their actions, and that highlighted how wrong the idea that this was happening. They couldn’t neatly and nicely kill with ‘Avada Kedavra’; they had to do it the most raw and primal form. I could be looking too far into this, but I liked that, how it made it seem more part of nature - like this was simply secondary succession, or evolution. To bring the earth back to its state before humans ruined it, the humans had to ruin themselves in such a primal way. That’s what I truly think made this piece so incredibly dark. It was in the violence, the mind control; d/a was woven into every fiber of it, and it’s incredible how you did that while avoiding the angst. Even at the end, the final catharsis, it’s blunt and not at all angsty. That’s what I adored about this, even as an angst writer.

Overall, it was a fabulous and original idea, and it was a pleasure reading it. :)


Author's Response: Hi Ellie,

First: WOW. Wow, wow, holy mackerel and cheeseballs, what a review! Probably the longest I’ve ever received! I am humbled and flattered and so, so, SO grateful that you took the time to leave such a wonderful and insightful comment! I wanted to craft a reply worthy of your time, which is why it’s taken me so long to get this posted. Sorry for the wait! But here it goes.

I really like to go into my writing with a plan, some sort of structure. Free-forming doesn’t typically get me anywhere, and I find that I can focus a lot more on the little details if I already know the direction I want to go in. I’m happy that I was able to surprise you with where I went with the prompt. I’ll admit, I thought I was playing it a little safe by sticking so closely to it, so to hear that you thought it was ‘different’ and ‘shocking’ and ‘brilliant’ really tickles me! :D

The three parts has to do with my compulsive need for order and structure, but yes, the separation of tone was also important. The three parts are not quite chapters to me; I more saw it like a sweeping narrative – variations on a theme – more than discrete stories within the story, if that makes any sense. I chose the timeline that I did because I wanted all of the characters to be around their 30s – just settling into a new stage of their lives, but out of all the hustle and bustle and change that can come in one’s 20s. It’s certainly convenient that it added a slight bit of unease to the piece!

It’s interesting that you think Harry started the Resistance. In my head, he was dead – had committed suicide rather than kill his loved ones. I didn’t state it in the fic because I didn’t think many people would pick up on it, or even think twice about the detail, but now I’m doubly glad I left it vague! I did choose what characters I included in this very carefully. Each of them had a role to play in the grand scheme, and each, too, would have struggled (in their own ways) with the Claimants’ takeover. Some accepted it more easily than others, and whether this was a personal weakness or a personal strength, I think, is debatable.

I can see how Hermione is OOC in this. Honestly, I’d debated warning for it, but decided against exactly because of those glimmers. Only the exceptionally strong and experienced (like Harry) could withstand the Claimants. Hermione, for all her intelligence and compassion, still doesn’t have a ton of experience dealing with voices in her head. It was unlike anything she’d ever experienced and, since it took her so off-guard, she could do nothing to prevent it or dislodge it once it settled in.

I must say, though: that I could give you hope that she could win against it and then squash that hope really makes me happy. Lol. This is a horror piece written for a horror fest, and there’s nothing more horrific than the utter loss of hope.

Draco was my favorite character in this, too, and I think the story worked better with us seeing him through Hermione’s eyes than it would have seeing the world through his eyes. The inability to escape the remains of his family and the strength to which he had attached himself to them post-War helped keep him sane. I consider him mentally and emotionally stronger than Hermione, given the crap he’d been put through as a child and a teen, and so he was a little less controlled by the Claimants. I think, too, that he was the character best suited to end it, to kill Hermione and then himself.

As to the nature of Draco and Hermione’s relationship, it was supposed to feel forced and one-sided. In order to distract the minds of the people they had claimed, the Claimants drove them to be social. When talking wasn’t enough, they drove them further. What happened between Draco and Hermione, Bill and Angelina, and Neville, Terry, and Romilda was in no way romantic or fated or beautiful. It was forced, yet another facet of their lives over which they had no control. Since humans are, by nature, social creatures, I imagine it helped them deal a little bit better with the pain they were inflicting, but it wasn’t a cure-all, and it wasn’t meant to be long-term.

I really didn’t want to get too much into the ‘why’s of the piece. Religion is a touchy subject, and it’s not one I care to read or write about. I can understand the need to know, to have an explanation, but sometimes, there just isn’t one, and I don’t have one for you now. Hahaha

Taking away magic was something I knew I wanted to include in the piece from the very start. I think it makes things much scarier, and much more personal. Sending an Avada someone’s way is easy, really. It’s impersonal, distant, and clean. Taking that option away from witches and wizards forces them to get dirty, to get blood on their hands in the most literal sense. And I don’t think you’re reading too much into the ‘evolutionary’ feel. I think that could make the argument for considering the force behind the Claimants as beneficial, or benevolent, instead of evil, in fact. Lots to think about, there.

Anyway! How’s that for a reply?! Hahaha. Thank you so much, again, for leaving such an insightful, well-crafted review. It was a pleasure to read and reply to! Sincerely,


There's an Answer by xxbabewithbrainsxx

Rated: 1st-2nd Years •
Summary: Currently a not-quite-fully-qualified Auror, Tonks is approached out of the blue by Kingsley Shacklebolt with a rather interesting case about werewolves.

The problem (besides the fact that a dangerous Muggle is thrown in the mix)? The werewolf in question -- Remus Lupin -- defies Tonks's expectations in every way possible.

This was written for Sophie/The owl for SPEW Summer Swap IV. :)
Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 08/16/13 Title: Chapter 1: "How would a Muggle know anything about werewolves?"

Hi, Soraya!

I thought this was a very interesting fic. I don’t read much of Remus/Tonks, but this is an exciting way, to say the least, for them to meet. You touched on the difficulties lycanthropes face, as well as subtly slip in references to other fandoms, and that made it all the more enjoyable.

The style of this piece was interesting. I loved how it featured Tonks as the main voice, because she gives a refreshing view on things, especially because she’s so young when the piece takes place. The dialogue-heavy way of telling the story brought flow to the piece, and the information was revealed slowly and steadily, leaving just enough mystery to keep the reader intrigued.

Tonks was definitely one of the best parts of the piece, for me. She still has that bravery and bluntness that we see when she becomes involved with the Order, but there’s almost a sense of naivety, because this is her first major case. She doesn’t put up with Remus’s slightly mope-y tendencies and reacts with surprising grace when she discovers his school friends. Yet we still get to see how she’s nervous, and trying to figure out just how to handle being an Auror, and at the end how good she’s going to become. Tonks focuses entirely on Remus, and her quick thinking ended up saving his life.

Remus had amazing characterization. Being a lycanthrope is extremely difficult, and considering this takes place at a point in his life where he has no one, he’s not in the best place. That’s why he accepts the potion from Robert, but the saddest moment was when he mentioned James, Sirius, and Peter. He thinks two of his best friends are dead and the other killed them both, and yet he’s still there. It backs up his ‘nothing to lose attitude’ that he adapts during this piece, yet the reader knows there’s still hope for him, because PoA hasn’t happened yet. I also love how we can see the beginnings of his feelings for Tonks - especially in the bar scene where he’s avoiding her gaze.

One of the best aspects of this piece was the rather twisty plot in a short time frame. It almost had a Sherlock-feel to it, because it all seemed rather straightforward until it wasn’t. We want to paint Robert as some Scooby-Doo villain, and the fact that he’s a hunter doesn’t help that, but you managed to give him a level of complexity. He was, in grief, trying to find some way to help people like his wife, but he simply didn’t have enough knowledge to make a safe attempt. And, despite it being a canon piece, you had me worried for Remus’s life and safety. :)

Another thing I have to comment on: how Robert is a ‘hunter’. I know you mentioned how it references Supernatural at the end, but I grinned as soon as I saw the word. It seemed like a perfect fit, because the hunter wouldn’t know what happens on the other side, and I imagined Dean and Sam trying to help a demon or monster they know little to nothing about. It was a fun reference to a show I need to continue watching, and it made me wonder what would happen if the universe of the show and Potterverse collided.

Overall, I thought it was a rather cute, despite the circumstances, look into what I consider ‘pre-relationship’. There were just enough hints to assure the reader that in the universe of the piece Tonks/Remus would happen eventually, but not enough for it to feel the need to develop into a complete relationship. In all honesty, I think this could, and should be, a real canon event, because it fits so seamlessly. Thank you for the lovely read!


Thin Red Lines by Maple_and_PheonixFeather

Rated: Professors • Past Featured Story
Summary: She wasn't ready, he had always known that. She pushed herself too hard, too fast, and when it all began to get too much, Katie didn't know how to handle it.

And Oliver knew that he didn't have the power to help.
Reviewer: iLuna17 Signed
Date: 08/16/13 Title: Chapter 1: Chapter 1

Hello, Maple. :)

When we were first discussing SPEW Swap stories, and you told me this idea, I had no idea what to expect. I can honestly say that this was not it, but it has earned its place as one of my favorite stories - not just of yours, but of MNFF as a whole. There were so many layers of complexity, and so many sensitive topics, but it never became too much, and each one was handled delicately and respectfully.

One of the things I thought was the most intriguing about this piece was the style. I love how it was told in short moments, and how there wasn’t a lot of inner monologue. The dialogue and body language writing was so effective it would have almost felt redundant in the scenes to mix in their thoughts, but at the spots where Oliver’s thoughts were prominent, though, you handled his struggle brilliantly. I also enjoyed how it was told out of order: it started near the end, and then while the reader caught-up there were still allusions to the first scene we read. It was amazing how you repeated the same scene twice, but the second time packed so much more punch. One of the most surprising things about this fic was the style of language; I don’t think I’ve ever read this serious of explicit in anything you’ve written, but they felt necessary and natural for the characters during the situations presented.

The character that truly shined for me was Oliver. Throughout the piece he’s faced with the same decision over and over - to act as a supporting friend to Katie, or to do what he thinks is right (for her or the team). Later, the friendship develops to love, but I thought his struggle was truly interesting. He’s the only one who seems to notice just how much she’s struggling with her injuries, and who’s willing to think ahead for her. Yet sometimes he chooses to simply be supportive, even though the back of his mind is still telling him something is wrong. I found his clear and unbiased judgment really refreshing, giving how intimate he became with Katie, though eventually that translated into genuine worry. And then everything comes to a head, and I saw a major turn in Oliver’s character. It’s like he decides that the only thing that matters is Katie, and how to help her fix the self-harm problem. It was like a switch turned on, and he wasn’t going to give up. Even if she cut him off. That was where his decision changed, and I found that brilliant. By changing the answer to the question he faced the entire story, he allowed us to see just how much he cared for Katie. It hit me so hard when Oliver said he felt helpless because of this - he felt like he failed. Because he couldn’t magically fix Katie. She had to fix herself.

By the end of the story, I just wanted to give Katie a hug. She’s dealt with so much in her life, and everything that had been bubbling under the surface since the war boiled over. She was struggling with many things during the story, yet you didn’t let her character stop at the disorders. Katie was a Quidditch player, someone who could make Oliver Wood spit out his Butterbeer, and incredibly strong to survive what she did. She felt so wholeheartedly real, and that made it so much more painful when we started to see her breaking. Katie was nowhere near perfect, though; she shut out Oliver once he found out about the self-harm instead of allowing him to help, and she shut him out before then, too. She was terrified and stubborn, and that’s a dangerous combination.

One topic I have to address is the self-harm. That is such an incredibly sensitive topic, especially now, and like any mental disorder one must tread carefully so as to not romanticize it. You did not do that one bit, and it wasn’t simply used as a plot device either. Rereading it, I saw all of Katie’s warning signs: the pressure from her mum, the body image issues, and the stress of Quidditch. The most poignant line of the entire piece, for me, was this one: “No matter what, Katie, despite of the scars, you know you're beautiful”. It felt like the perfect thing for Oliver to say, because he didn’t romanticize it, but he managed to show how much he truly cared for her, and simultaneously tried to help her stop (assuming body image issues were a contributing factor). And then Oliver didn’t press Kate, he held her and let her cry and deal with her own emotions. One thing you did brilliantly was how Oliver couldn’t fix her, that Katie had to (and want to) fix herself. In the first confrontation, Katie so desperately tries to prove she’s okay (so that Oliver will leave her alone and she can continue cutting), but her hands shake because he does know. Then Katie is incredibly defensive, because self-harm is an addiction that’s hard to break free from, and cuts one of her favorite people out of her life because the addiction is basically telling her to. She’s in danger of being stopped by Oliver, and that couldn’t be. Oliver, to his overwhelming credit, does not give up, and you left us with a spot of hope at the end that Katie will be okay.

The ending was up-in-the-air, but it still managed to bring a sense of closure to the piece. We don’t know if Katie and Oliver get back together, or if Katie is ever okay, but there’s hope that it will. Though it was oddly romantic - slipping a piece of paper under her door - it fit Oliver. He had been trying for a long time to talk to her, to contact her, but then it came down to what she needed: for someone to have faith in her. And because he’s post-finding-out Oliver, what Katie needs is the only thing he can consider when trying to write this note. It was sweet, and though I wish we could have a slight reaction from Katie, the lyrics as the note tie the song to the piece and leave us with a brilliant ending to a simply spectacular piece. Amazing job!