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3/23 c49 Guest
I can see you maturing as a writer. And it is such a treat.
3/22 c1 Guest
I've been following this fanfic since I was 14, now I'm 26. It's amazing how time flies. I thought you already gave up on finishing this yet I still checked at least once a year, perhaps? Or whenever I remember this story. As time passed by, I was just doing so for the sake of wanting closure because growing older, gaining more experiences and reading more also meant that rereading the story didn't have the same effect anymore. I discovered more flaws especially with the earlier ones (which isn't exactly to criticize you, given that you also wrote this at a young age! It makes it impressive). So imagine my surprise when I checked this on a whim and discovered you are rewriting the story and... Wow. It's something I also really enjoy now, I love how the rewriting gave the story and its characters more depth. I don't really have much else to say but I just felt like commenting because I feel like this story has been a part of my life for years now and seeing the author return to it and rewriting it just made me feel a certain way(positively!), with a more mature perspective(and obviously improved skills as a writer,even though you were already good before).
3/22 c49 DuchessOfSpud
The section where you have Bill asking Draco how long he’s been riding Thestrals, there’s a bit where is kinda repeats a couple of paragraphs. It’s not an exact copy, almost as if you were deciding how you wanted to word it. I just wanted to make sure that you were made aware of it.

I love how much more in depth your are making Draco’s planning for whatever happens after Hogwarts. I also like how he is not simply going with the flow with the whole debate teams and is actually attempting to do something about the situation.

If you wrote Pansy like she was evil for using sex, I never saw that in the original. I personally just thought she was resourceful and used and advantage that she had. Not evil, just willing to do whatever it takes to survive.

Anyways, keep up the good work! Can’t wait until the next chapter!
3/22 c49 brianaangel
This update definitely made my day! I’m glad you established Pansy, one of the main characters in your later sequels in the first story. Once again, eagerly waiting for more.
3/21 c48 Manny654
Love the updated version of this chapter, the changes made with regard to Pansy, and the more mature look at her and how she uses her sexuality and everything. I think one of my favorite parts of this rewrite is seeing how things have changed for you as a writer after so many years. Can’t wait to keep reading!
3/11 c48 FFFudgeUp
Great story. Love your Draco. Bill really pushed him to be and do better. Thanks for sharing.
3/7 c45 MissWM
perfect chapter. real good work. again the tidbits you are showing of the weasley family antics and problems - amazing. it gives them more depth.
and i noticed you left out buckbeak - i guess it makes sense. and, if i'm not mistaken, the person messing with the wards - i don't remember anything about the disguising potion you mentioned in this chapter. i liked it. makes the person more 'mistery' and 'professional''
thanks for the chapter, see u on the next ;)
3/7 c44 MissWM
the first part, about draco and his reaction to the gift? perfect.

the whole chapter is brilliant. i'm so excited. and i love the way you are putting more and more of ginny and percy in the story. it feels more real and it gives more insight into problems and situations that can/will surface later

till the next chapter! xoxo
3/7 c43 MissWM
It's been so long since i last came up here. sorry, life got a bit chaotic.

about the chapter, i won't go into detail - i wanna read the next ones hehehe yes, i'm that anxious. but i really liked it. bill and hagrid's conversation at the end was a real nice touch and, as you said, gave credibility for hagrid's behavior afterwards. it was really smart.

also, i have to say, i think writing brawls and fights must be so taxing. i don't know. it's confusing in real life. i can only imagine how hard it is to put it into words. you did a great job!

looking forward to the next ones :)
2/27 c48 2Madame Mermaid
Good Evening,

sorry it's taken me so long, but I sat for my last exam for this term on Thursday, so now I'm finally free to read and review as I please. :-) Since I already read the revised chapter almost two weeks ago, I'll give it another read-through and do a step-by-step review this time. All in all, though, absolutely no complaints - I loved the changes you made, all of them make the chapter more nuanced than before.

What I noticed right at the beginning is how you portrayed Draco thinking about the idea of political neutrality and how he might achieve such a position without losing his inheritance. It's a small alteration, but it's really important for showing that Draco's defection isn't a spur-of-the-moment, thought-of-this-off-the-top-of-my-hat decision, but something he's thought through - both in terms of personal conviction as well as simple logistics. This makes the eventual outcome much more realistic, and as you go on to show later on in the chapter when he starts to take steps into that direction by taking up with Pansy, this version of Draco will probaby not be as much of a solo-operative as your first incarnation. Again, it's more realistic that way, since for all that Draco's a genius, he's still a 17-year-old student. Plus, it's absolutely in-character and ironic as well as sad that Draco thinks of his soul's worth in terms of money - and for all that it's a terrible way of thinking, especially about a topic such as taking sides in a morally loaded civil war, I absolutely understand the conclusion he arrives at. It's just so pragmatically Draco... :-D

Next important moment in this chapter is, obviously, Draco and Bill's conversation on Lucius teaching someone else the Cruciatus - I really enjoyed how you added background information on Lucius 'ghosting' Draco after Lukas' death, and the psychological impact this has had on Draco throughout his life. This goes a long way to explaining why Draco never felt tempted to tell Lucius about his genius, for all that he loves his father and has always wanted to hold his attention. While your earlier explanation of how Draco realised early on that making his genius known would only lead to him being used by others still holds true, it always felt clinical, especially since Draco was only a child when he learned how unusual his abilities are. The portrayal you give of Lucius in this chapter turns Draco's secrecy at least partly into an emotional response to his father's neglect, which feels more realistic - even a genius is not a Stoic at such a young age, after all.

What is, of course, an interesting twist in this conversation is how Draco would probably have liked to be taught the Unforgivables by his father, even though they are, objectively speaking, a terrible thing, just to spend some quality time, so to speak, with his father. It's sadly ironic that Mirabel's situation, which is anything but perfect, as we've seen in the former chapter, is a source of envy to Draco. There's also an interesting detail in this scene, and I wanted to ask if you consciously included it: Draco makes the same mistake as Mirabel in thinking that the Cruciatus requires emotions such as anger and hatred to fuel it, while the Imperius, as Draco says, is all about will-power. As we learned in the former chapter, according to Lucius, the Cruciatus is all about exerting control on another person. So, is this meant to show us that for all Draco's genius, Lucius is still more qualified to play the game of thrones due to life experience and observation? It feels like that - as I've noted before, for all that Draco's an intellectual anomaly, he's still a kid, and though he'd probably curse me for saying it, he's got some naiveté left that Lucius mus have lost a long time ago.

So, yes, loved this moment, and I really wonder how the Draco-Mirabel-Lucius-triangle will play out - I've got a few ideas, but I'm not sure I want to discuss them or simply be surprised. ;-)

Still love the Harry-Snape-analogy, btw, especially in the context of translating runes. It sounds like something one of my professors could have said. Storywise, the conversation goes a long way to establishing the brotherly relationship between Bill and Draco that you're aiming for - as we've discussed before when talking about inappropriate jokes, moments of camaraderie like this, even if they're at someone else's expense (not that Harry or Severus would disagree here), somehow define the closeness of a friendship, establish trust between characters.

For all that I love the added scene of the pool party, and can actually see it happening - the logistics have me a bit puzzled. I mean, wouldn't Hermione or another goody-two-shoes prefect have intervened, especially since it's a co-ed party, for all that it seems rather tame? Just a thought... On the other hand, seeing some of the inofficial student life going on at Hogwarts (it's a boarding school full of teenagers, for heaven's sake - there must be something!) was great fun, and a great idea to liven up the story and take us 'behind the scenes'.

As you can probably guess, I did a bit of a happy dance when I noticed that you re-cast Pansy as bisexual (at least, that's my reading...). It's so very fitting for who she is, for all that it's probably not important to the story. Furthermore, although I understand why Rowling didn't include openly LGBTQ students in her books (not the focus of the novels, and it's been a few years since they were first published, so way back in the 90s, I daresay there would have been a bit of a discussion...), in retrospect, the lack of diverse characters (in so many ways, not just sexual orientation) is glaringly obvious. Still fun reading, but a missed opportunity. So, yeah for a bisexual Pansy in FFs!

I think you've described Draco's and Pansy's tendencies pretty well in your author's note, and I agree, it will be interesting to see their dynamics - please give us some opportunities to watch the play-by-play, both in private and in public. What I really liked about the pool scene was Pansy figuratively pulling the rug from under Draco's well-controlled feet by casting that wind-charm. It's the same as I've noted before with Lucius - you obviously gave more thought to Pansy, characterwise, in the later stories, and now that you know who she is and where you're going, she's so much more realistic, fleshed-out and outspoken than before. Not a cardboard character, but an independent factor in the story - it'll be fun to watch how she develops. I somewhat hope we might see her from Bill's perspective, too, or even have her POV at some point before book 4 - for all his genius, Draco has some blinkers regarding Pansy (perhaps women in general, come to think of it - he takes a while to read Ginny later on, after all; subconscious results of avoiding Narcissa?), and a certain emotional ineptness when it comes to understanding others, in general. He's a good observer, and he intellectually understands what he's seeing, but he doesn't get the underlying emotions sometimes - which is, again, something I empathise with, but it makes him partially blind.

You know, Voldemort asking Mirabel 'How will you prove it?' makes me wonder what you might have up your sleeve regarding that character, especially in context of the powerplay betweeen Voldemort and Lucius. Considering their differences in method and even believes, and the fact that we know Lucius stays with us till book 3 (in the physical sense), it makes me wonder how Lucius will manage to righten the balance and keep Voldemort from drastic measures against him for now. You've definitely added an interesting new factor to the Death Eater mix - can't wait to see what happens...

Last, but not least, I'm glad you kept the Draco-healing-Snape-scene, but I also agree with the changes you made. In this rewrite, it's much more realistic to see Draco only partially healing Snape, but being drained by that, anyway, rather than healing all of the rib-and-lung damage. It's also a very elegant way to introduce Bill to the idea that Draco might have a bit of an addiction-problem - still subtle, but not as ethereal as in the first version.

Thus, I'm sorry to say, I've no complaints. -.- Some constructive critic I am, huh? ;-)

As for the next chapter - I always loved that one in the first installment of the story, if only because the chapter rule is so quintessentially Draco, but also because it's a chapter full of character interaction: We see Bill and Draco's developing camaraderie, we see Draco and Pansy flirting (can't wait to see how that plays out in the new version!), we see Draco's politeness towards Fleur, we see Bill trying to make sense of what Draco says and does - it's a nice mix, and goes a long way to showing the various flaws and strengths of the characters. Thus, there's nothing specific to focus on, but I do hope you manage to show us more of both Fleur and Pansy as 'independent' characters, and that you keep Draco's rather jaded view of relationships and Bill's hopeful perspective on this.

As always, have fun writing, as we have fun reading. :-)
All the best,

Madame Mermaid
2/21 c48 30LoraRawr
once again, I have loved the new additions and edits. really can tell where you've put your thoughts and feelings and growth into it. thanks again for letting us come in this journey with you!
2/15 c29 SeaGirl.Oceans
wait, does this mean he's losing the signum? damn, I liked the tattoo, I hope he keeps it either in this story or the rewrite
1/26 c47 DuchessOfSpud
While reading the section about the debate between Draco and Charlie, there were multiple times I was really impressed with the changes you made to it. While I didn’t necessarily think the old version was bad, this one is decor and improvement. I can how much better and more believable Charlie was this go around at making Draco see the Equality group’s mindset. Actually linking Draco’s own experience and choices to it I think was what really improved their debate. I might be remembering it wrong since it’s been a while since I read the original, but I’m pretty sure that was a new addition that you included and I greatly approve of it!

I also like how Charlie made sure to tell Draco that he really shouldn’t have to fight this battle and make this kind of choice. Even if in the end Draco comes to the conclusion that he’s going to have to fight now matter what, I think that was a great moment in their relationship and really showed Draco that despite their disagreements, Charlie can still see and agree with part of Draco’s arguments as well.

Outside of that scene, I’m really happy that you’re including more definition to the relationship between Voldemort and Lucius as well! I never really quite understood what cause Voldemort to finally throw Lucius away like that despite how their relationship seemed in the original. I’m glad that that we’ll be getting a bit more context to that! I feel like I’ve said thinks like that a lot with these new chapters. Not that that’s a bad thing. In general, more context is always good!
1/26 c46 DuchessOfSpud
I am really happy with the self argument (I don’t know what else to call it) that goes on in Draco’s head in this version. It’s really nice to actually be able to see the struggles he has in making a decision between the 2 sides and really shows that he is actually putting thought into these issues even if unwillingly. I also really like how you moved suspicion from Claire to Stevick. In the old version, it sort of felt like they just forgot about her once someone was caught. They didn’t even think about the chance that there was 2 spies and didn’t give a second thought to how her behavior could still be suspicious. This version is did much better and is more believable since Charlie didn’t really believe Draco’s argument to begin with.
1/26 c47 Luna1348
I really enjoyed reading this, it was quite good. I love the changes that you made!
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