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for The Choices That Make Us

7/17 c12 38ChocolateTeapot
Excellent chapter! As always, the worldbuilding, characterisation and writing is fantastic.

Bellatrix positioning Narcissa’s music as something that would keep their mother bearable, though at a price was a nicely understated way of beginning the chapter with a reminder what a disaster the Blacks are.

The telescope was a neat call-back.

The wards and the ward-mold was a really interesting detail.

Cassiopeia’s note blocking off potential competition was perfect in its calculated casualness. I liked the double meaning of her script darkening the parchment.

Bellatrix blurting out that she’s have been taught how to fly really gave a powerful image of her frustration.

I liked her going to Andromeda for emotional validation.

The memory did a great job of showing both the attraction of being with Cassiopeia and her capriciousness.

Finishing the section on Bellatrix’s resolve to ditch Cassiopeia was very well done.

Every one of the described Lestrange buildings was absolutely fantastic. If it weren’t for the inhabitants, I would love to see them.

A few typos:
“Freya's only daughte,r”
“Getting an even greater say in what were allowed to know.” I think that should be “we’re”.
“Ladon Lestrange was lithe effeminate man,” I wonder if there should be an article here.
“It had happened only one,” I wonder if that should be “once”

Bellatrix bewilderment that one might want to live with more of their relative got a laugh.

The Diggory book law discussed, with the opinions about it’s real purpose and who was backing it was great worldbuilding. It also did a great job at introducing the young crowd and sketching their dynamic.

Bellatrix being disappointed that the debate wasn’t likely to end in violence was a good detail.

Her contempt for Lucius comes over very well.

Her analysis about Rowle and Jugson being there was interesting.

Voldemort’s abrupt entrance was well done.

Bellatrix being curious about Ladon because Cassiopeia had loads of bad things to say about him was great.

Her thought about bonding with Rodolphus and how arguments with his parents went was neat.

Her trying to place Voldemort was well described.

The charm hiding Voldemort’s features from memory was a very cool detail.

I also really liked her realising that he reminded her of Cassiopeia.

The questions about the Voldemort family were well handled. I liked Bellatrix being pleased that Rowle was the one asking the questions.

Her thoughts about the duel were good.

Her thanking Rowle as funny.

Her using the fact that Voldemort is a parselmouth to try narrowing down his ancestry was nicely done.

Bellatrix being intrigued by Morty’s perfection and trying to work out how this could be was excellent. Her naming him Morty as a jab got a smile.

Voldemort talking politics was well handled. He comes across as a strong orator and the message is definitely tailored to the crowd.

The discussion about vassalage was also interesting. I liked the worldbuilding in Jugson’s rant about the magical mason’s guild. Bellatrix’s amusement at him complaining about the nouveau riche was fitting.

The note that Rowle was an outlier in not seeming overly enthused by the “kill all muggles” idea was good in adding a little depth to his character.

Bellatrix’s interest in having a nuclear explosion close to home was darkly funny.

Voldemort’s talk about the Wizengamot was neat. I liked him asking who saw themselves as heirs and Rodolphus’ answer.

Her telling Voldemort about being sick of being the most powerful person in the room was superb. The comment that the only thing duelling Rodolphus was teaching her was patience was neat.

Her touching his face and the altercation that followed as also very well done. I liked her frustration that Rodolphus didn’t immediately get what she was alluding to.

The idea that the reason for the glamour was that Voldemort was embarrassed about his nose was funny.

The unicorn appearing was indeed very dramatic. Everyone’s reaction to it was great, and I loved her admitting that it was incredibly beautiful.

I liked her scepticism at the claim that it might last a couple of hours.

Her testing the unicorn hair was great, showing both Voldemort’s power and Bellatrix’s intensity.

Morty having a survival instinct was neat.

Rodolphus coming to ask if she was okay with going home alone with Voldemort was sweet. I loved her saying she’d have to tell Cassiopeia she’d found someone better.

Her focus on trying to get a lasting backpack was neat.

Voldemort telling her he’d brought her to a place where she would lose a duel was a fantastic ending to the section.

Andromeda making the case that Tom Riddle was Voldemort was excellently done.

The duel was wonderfully described. I can see why Bellatrix would be impressed.

Morty’s eventual death was well handled.

Cassiopeia would send howlers. Bellatrix’s emotional reaction to Andromeda telling her to cut Cassiopeia off was good.

The description of Slughorn’s office did a nice job setting the scene.

Bellatrix’s feelings about Slughorn’s mentoring were very well put.

Her challenging Slughorn on his claim that he couldn’t really remember Voldemort was neat. Her confirming with legimens and his understandably furious reaction was great.

Bellatrix immediately having an obliviate ready (with Slughorn not even having his wand drawn) was worked nicely. I really liked the alarming detail her being able to tell the difference between ordinary zoning out and obliviate. Her thoughts about what she was being obliviated about at home were funny.

Her moving on to a much more innocuous question was crafty. Slughorn’s talk about his other students was neat and I liked Bellatrix observing his manner of talking about Voldemort.

Her telling her sisters that she wanted to meet Voldemort was good, as was Narcissa’s insistence on her taking some safety measures. (Not that either of those would likely have helped.)

Andromeda coming to Voldemort’s defence was an excellent moment. I can really see why she’d do it (and that she’d obviously regret it later, but hindsight is 20/20). Bellatrix checking to see if Narcissa was also as surprised at this was very good. Andromeda saying that a muggle was better than two Gaunts as parents and Bellatrix reluctantly agreeing was a good ending.
2/13 c34 1Wanderlustatheart
I'm so happy you posted again! I love it whenever you write about the Tonks family! Thank you so much for this great chapter!
9/13/2021 c33 Wanderlustatheart
Okay so I’m confused about something. Ted and Andromeda lived off fake muggle money? You just made me realize how easy it could be for wizards to become millionaires in the muggle world if they simply replicated the muggle money. Muggles wouldn’t be able to tell the difference. Don’t you think there would be some kind of regulation for these type of situations?

I didn’t mention this in earlier chapters, but I think it’s very smart that you thought of the idea of mixing electronics and magic and that Andromeda would use that to make money.

You made Nymphadora say she knew Mad Eye for 15 years. I wonder what’s the story behind how they got to know each other before auror training.

I LOVED reading about the cute little family reunion. (Even though it was supposed to be sad) It’s so rare to have a story write about Andromeda and Nymphadora’s relationship. « Come curse things with me » haha very good

I really liked the tension you discussed about Dora wanting her parents to join the Order. We know Andy’s reasons, but are Ted’s? He wants to stick to Andromeda’s choices?

This chapter was so so good!
I’m really eager to read your upcoming chapters. How much chapters have you planned to write before wrapping up the story?
I wish you as much inspiration as possible to finish this story! :)
9/12/2021 c32 Wanderlustatheart
I really liked the way you described the effects of Veritaseum, especially when you mentionef it didn’t accept « I don’t know » for an answer.

I loved it when you wrote that Narcissa would not have a shorter tenure than Dolores Ombrage.

I loved what you made Hermione say about Bill and McGonagal being hypocrites. « Turns out they are real people » was very strong !
« Grief didn’t bow to reason », loved this.

Having Hermione explain how Harry feels and thinks about Narcissa is very Hermione-like. In the books it happens often that while Harry may feel confused about what he’s feeling, Hermione puts the right words onto them and seems to understand him very well.

« I can respect who you’ve become. » That is very beautiful.

I really like how Narcissa tends to use her magic to transfigure beautiful animals. That fits well with her character.

Andromeda shaking Narcissa up was perfect! What do you want to do is a great question.

Also loved how Lucius and Narcissa team up!

I knew you would make Cassiopeia come back;)
You’ve over done yourself in this chapter! Truely good!
9/12/2021 c31 Wanderlustatheart
Andromeda not thinking that much ahead and being surprised with herself was very enjoyable to read! For sure there would be this moment where she questions herself again.
I liked the way you made Kingsley and Andy interact! Very nice! I always imaged the both of them being friendly back in their school years.
I loved how Andromeda struggled with being called a Muggleborn but not really being able to talk about it to Ted.
The back and forth was also great!
I liked what you wrote about unlearning things.
It made me want to learn more about Andromeda’s friendships :)

Your Andromeda chapters are always great!
9/4/2021 c30 Wanderlustatheart
I think it’s good that Narcissa has indeed made some bad decisions and taken part in illegal actions instead of always being the one who kept silence. She must have done something wrong at least. And I like how you describe her relationship with Lucius.
I very much liked your description of Narcissa’s new wand, it being vindictive and sealing a partnership. It makes sense.
I’m not sure I like the idea of wands for squibs... Cause then the line between magic and muggles becomes too thin.
I liked how you described Narcissa’s guilt and how she was scared of asking the simplest of question to Ollivander.
I do like the increase in mind healers!
9/3/2021 c33 Paul
Cassiopeia might be nice as long as you don't make her too sympathetic.

Maybe you could follow up on the Hermoine and Pansy possibly being related twist.

Maybe a Hogwarts class several years into the future (say during either the first or last year Regulus's daughter attends Hogwarts).

A Goyle cameo could be interesting.

Maybe seeing Amos Diggory in person could augment his father's role or contrast it.

Narcissa, Regulus, Draco or all of them having a talk with Snape's painting might be nice.
9/2/2021 c29 Wanderlustatheart
It does feel odd for Narcissa to interact with Harry, McGonagall, Hermione (above all I feel like their interaction is weird), Dennis... It feels kind of surreal for Narcissa to suddenly be totally on the good side now. But, I do like the fact that she was made teacher.
I really liked what you wrote about Narcissa’s sanity being kept thanks to her own selfishness. That was well written.
It was cute that Lucius came to see her:)
8/26/2021 c27 Wanderlustatheart
This chapter made me wonder what Professor McGonagall thought of Narcissa at school. I don’t remember if you wrote about them before...
Blood always mattered so much but in retrospective it is a little due to blood if your explanation behind muggleborns is that a squib married a muggle. It means that there is such thing as « magical blood ».
I think you forgot the word « was » in your sentence when Narcissa tells Pansy about Bellatrix being miserable because of Cassiopeia.
Thank you again so much for writing!
8/23/2021 c26 Wanderlustatheart
It must have been hard for Andromeda sometimes to raise Teddy seeing as he must make her think of Nymphadora so much (especially him being a Metamorphmagus).

What Harry said about Remus made me feel sad. Do you really think he thought Remus never really wanted to get to know him? I mean, of course Remus saw a lot of James and Lily in Harry but surely he was able to see who Harry was... But I agree that Remus could have had more moments with Harry... i always wished they had been closer!

I have to agree with Harry that Dumbledore takes good care of his image. But I like what he said (what you wrote) about admiring him but still being angry.

I completely understand Andromeda’s resentment towards Remus! It’s good that you show this motherly part of her!

I’m VERY happy Andromeda starts getting involved politically! It’s going to be good for her!
8/20/2021 c25 Wanderlustatheart
I found Harry a little more sarcastic than canon. I’m not sure he would have actually said « I killed Voldemort, I sit where I please ». That being said, Harry is the one character we know so well, so it makes it so much more harder to write about him.
It is very Harry-like to avoid crowds and demand that we clear Sirius’s name. I also agree with you that Harry would go to Teddy and Andromeda, as well as Grimmaud Place. It’s very canon in my opinion.
Also, it is perfect that the Malfoys pay to rebuild Hogwarts. It is their own « easy » way to start rebuilding their image.
It was very strong to remind readers in this chapter how such a strong witch Bellatrix was no matter how bad she was. Destroying dementors! That’s crazy!
It’s very true the way pretense often helps you even thought it’s not the healthiest thing.
The part where you say Andromeda would sometimes seek her husbands eyes before reminding herself he’s dead... sad:( It mad it even sadder when she admitted she’d survive it.
I can’t help but think about the part where Harry told Remus that he had to go back to Nymphadora because you just can’t abandon your children. I sometimes don’t understand why Remus went to the war knowing he had his son and knowing what Harry told him.
I love how Andromeda also focuses on helping Harry.
I even want to take Andromeda’s advice for Harry;)
« It’s not easy but it’s simple », i loved that!
I was grateful for your reasoning behind the question as to why Andromeda didn’t fight in the war. I was scared you would say it was because she was afraid.
I’m still usure about this Narcissa & Ginny part. Why is she jealous in the first place?

Lovely chapter, thank you so much!
8/20/2021 c24 Wanderlustatheart
Wow this is incredible. Now this really differentiates your story from other Black fanfics. What you’ve done with Regulus’s character is so inventive! I’m glad Regulus was able to find piece. It wasn’t fair that the little boy who needed so much love was thrown into a messy life so young. I’m glad that there’s a good ending for at least some of the Black characters:’) Lyra seems adorable, I’m glad it pushes Regulus to keep touch with magic instead of completely rejecting it from his life. I feel like it’s quite similar to controlling addictions, moderation is better than abstinence:)
Thank you so much for this creative chapter!
8/19/2021 c23 Wanderlustatheart
Wow, incredible chapter.
All those steps leading to madness were very subtile and precise! How she still uses wandless magic, how her husband ends up desgusting her and how she would fight against memory loss are very much Bellatrix-like moments.
Very scary, which means its also very well written! Thank you!
8/18/2021 c22 Wanderlustatheart
I still feel odd even after this chapter. I’m unsure I understand how they could have thought for certain that it was Sirius... I guess when they saw wormtail and muggles the aurors thought they had put 2 and 2 together. It’s just too sad, Sirius had such a difficult life... this was beautifully written and I loved the use of the surname Prongslet! Adorable:) It’s horrible how he doesn’t even remember happy memories anymore...

I also wanted to go back to something you wrote in previous chapters. You said Bellatrix had thought Andromeda was a good sister until she wasn’t. But I still don’t understand why she never went after her. Even if Orion had also betrayed her, it doesn’t really give a reason behind the fact that was more willing to kill or destroy Sirius’s life than Andromeda’s.

Thank you again for this beautiful chapter!
8/17/2021 c21 Wanderlustatheart
Wow. Amazing chapter. Regulus’s moment on the rooftop, the motivation of it not being fair was so powerful.
Seeing Andromeda looking so in control with a strong Ted by her side was amazing. I loved that part when Regulus asks « how’s the muggle » and she answers « still a wizard » THAT WAS PERFECT! Haha loved it!
Everything was set so well, even how Walburga’s painting was done in the end.
Amazing.
This chapter feels like the end, I’m so grateful it’s not!
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