I feel so bad for Parvarti in this. Not only is she having to deal with the normal teenage difficulties, school, and some extremely heavy secrets like her sister's depression, questioning her sexual preferences, and so on, but she also is growing up in the extremely dark period of time of the second wizarding war. Having a wonderful distraction like a unicorn is wonderful, as they seem to be very mystical and peaceful creatures. What's even more wonderful is that, to Parvati, the unicorns are a symbol of hope, and that is beautiful, especially in such a dark time.
This was a nice little story!
Teenage years are so horrible anyway, and despite the fact that so many generations have struggled through it, I can't really imagine what it would have been like for me to grow up during a period like this. There's so much darkness and peril going on, but I really wanted to focus on trying to explore some of Parvati's character here and offering her some hope and light in the darkness - I'm really pleased you enjoyed it!
Thank you for the review!
Hey, Sian! Hi, my dear! I'm here with a snowball (hug) for you! *wub*
Awww... this was so heartwarming! One of the cutest, fluffiest, most adorable things I've ever read!
I mean, there is darkness in it too, but the message of hope you give through this is so much stronger and I just love it!
It's so nice that Parvati has found this escape from all her troubles and worries, and what a wonderful escape it is! I can totally imagine finding serenity in unicorns, they are said to be the purest of creatures and you can really feel that in this story, there is a sense of peace and innocence that is just wonderful.
I also really, really loved the little glimpse you give us about Parvati's love for Lavender, it's just a small mention but still so sweet! And your descriptions throughout are so wonderful! Really, this is such a lovely, beautiful piece!
So much love, darling!
Ah, I'm so pleased you enjoyed this story! I really wanted to capture the sense of the escape and release that Parvati finds in the forest when she visits the unicorns, in the midst of all the darkness and chaos going on around her. I think the fact that we know how much she and Lavender liked them when they studied the creatures in class, and what unicorns represent, meant that they worked so well as part of Parvati's safe place, when she can get away from the horror and spend time with something pure and innocent. I'm so happy you liked the way that she visited the unicorns and the sense of peace that they offered.
Thank you so much for this lovely review!
First off, this was a fascinating fic to read :) I haven't actually read that many fics about Parvati alone; I've read tons with Parvati/Lavender, but not many about solely Parvati, so this was rather refreshing, honestly :)
That description of Parvati's secrets like seeds... wow. I have to take a moment to appreciate that beautiful analogy, and how it connects deeply to Parvati's character as someone who loves and appreciates and connects best with nature.
The serene atmosphere was created perfectly, right from the line "The forest was still." That established a sense of time slowing down, of time being stuck on this beautiful moment for a few moments before it sped up again, going way too fast. And then the descriptions of the unicorns... reading about this, I could imagine myself in Parvati's place, feeling the unicorns' warmth.
I loved how you sort of created a parallel between the secrets at the beginning of the chapter and Parvati's new secret--those secrets were dark, insiduous--they were like poison ivy in her chest. This is perahps more like a rose or, befittingly, a golden apple, something to think about fondly. I loved this idea of light v.s. dark and how that theme was built into this story.
I really enjoyed this! Thank you for sharing it with us :)
I don't think I've ever read a fic which focuses on Parvati alone before, either - I've read (and written) Lavender fics, and even a story about Padma, but it was so interesting to explore Parvati's character outside of her relationship with Lavender or any other charcters.
Ah, I'm so pleased you liked that description! I didn't want to focus too heavily on imagery in this story - partly because it's only short, but also because I wanted to try and capture the lightness of the peace that Parvati feels as part of her escape. Little lines like that were really fun to come up with, and I'm glad you liked the way that it connected with her love of nature, and then the unicorns appearing in the forest.
Thank you so much for such a thoughtful review!
Hi :) thank you for entering my Fantastic Beast Challenge! The Forums still seem to be down with the new site, so I thought I'd come here directly with the results. I had a total of seven very good entries, and the choice was hard.
1st prize: Fantastic good-night stories by Vilja
2nd prize: Serenity in Chaos by nott theodore
3rd prize: Harry Potter and Druidic Magic (Chapter 3 The Phoenix's Song) by StarFeather
Footesteps in the Forest by Dojh167
Seemed like a good idea at the time by melian
Forest by Rhaenyra
Tengu and a Daughter of Ninja (chapter 12) by StarFeather
Here is the graphic prize I made for you: http://imgur.com/DdYpd1e
Reviews will be coming.
Thank you for placing me second in your challenge! I really enjoyed writing this piece and I'm glad you liked it. The graphic is lovely!
I have to admit, my first reaction was “But not Parvati/Lavender???” And while Femslash is always inherently superior to Not Femslash, that also made me realize that we never really get to see Parvati on her own, not attached to others. I’ve seen fics on Lavender without ships, but not Parvati. So I’ve come around to being glad that you wrote it this way.
This is highlighted well with the first line, because at that point the reader genuinely has no idea what her secrets may be, but we never knew her well enough to argue for or against that.
(okay, Good Lavender reference)
Awww, what a beautiful concept!
Hagrid is the best enabler. We never really know him to have close relationships with anyone but the trio, but I like to think there are others with whom he has a compassionate understanding. He would definitely sympathize with Parvati wanting to escape to be with the unicorns.
Hehe, I like that Parvati was surprised that Hagrid likes gentle creatures too.
I love the phrase “breathed peace into her.”
This was just so sweet and lovely all over! It was of course set in a dark context, but that was what made it so meaningful. I’m glad Parvati has something beautiful that’s all her own.
I feel like I'm disappointing you so much with the lack of femslash in my stories Dx. BUT there's a hint at Parvati/Lavender, so don't hate me?
Parvati was a really interesting character to explore in this story, and you're right that we don't get to read that many stories which focus on her. And you're right, Hagrid is definitely an enabler, but at least on this occasion it's in a good way rather than anything overly dangerous? I'm so pleased you liked this, though, and thank you for such a lovely review!
I’m not quite sure how to start this review. Like, if I could use the smiley faces like on the forums, the one with heart for eyes would definitely be a good starting point. Because this entire piece was beautiful. Like, breathtakingly beautiful.
You have such a delicate tone, one that makes this story light, despite all the bad things happening in the castle at the current point in time. You bring readers into Pavarti’s world, into the peace that comes in the forest, into the peace that accompanies the Unicorns in their home, and it was just…it was soothing, to read Pavarti going into this place she loves, and that makes her whole again. That and your word choice and imagery and just…everything seemed so well thought out, so carefully placed. It really was lovely.
I really loved Pavarti’s character as well. How she’s so honest about things, how she knows herself well enough to take a moment to take care of herself, knows that someone will be able to explain her disappearance, to understand it. She was such a great choice of character, one I never have really thought twice about, and you gave her such depth and made her real.
Really, I can’t get over any part of this. It’s so beautifully written and I’m almost sad that there isn’t more to it…
So. Before I go, I’m going to share two of my favourite lines (although there are numerous others that I loved as well!)
“[S]he sought it out and knew that it would renew her, like a phoenix rising from the ashes.”
“(except for Flobberworms. Parvati wasn't sure anyone - least of all Hagrid - had any idea what they did)”
What a lovely review to receive! <3
I'm so pleased that you enjoyed this story, and that you managed to find so much in it out of the things I was trying to include! Hogwarts at this point is such a dark, horrible place to be, and I really wanted to bring that out and show the value of the moment of escape that Parvati gets here. I don't imagine it would have been easy for the DA to have many moments of self-care, but I like to think that each of them knows it's important for the others to get a chance at during this year, when they're under the strain of fighting back and trying to protect the other students as well as themselves. I'm glad you liked her character, too - I haven't really written about her before, or even read much about her, but it's brilliant that you thought I managed to give some depth to her character in this piece.
Thank you for such a wonderful review! *heart eyes emoji*
SIAN. WHAT ARE YOU DOING, MAKING ME CRY IN 1001 WORDS?? NOT. FAIR.
This was, like everything you write, exceptionally beautiful. I wasn’t sure what to expect when I opened up the story, but I was so pleased with what I found. I don’t normally pay attention to Parvati as a character, but you’ve given her such depth here, it’s hard not to care. Just the brief mentions of her sister’s depression and her feelings for Lavender made her so human. That’s a pretty exceptional feat in a thousand and one words. I giggled a little at the mention of pixies pulling at her hair; I suppose that would be rather irritating, especially when you’re on the way to your safe place. This whole idea of Parvati wandering out into the woods to seek out the unicorns is so sweet, and again, just so human. Giving her this little tradition makes her so well rounded.
Your description was beautiful too! Not that I expected anything less. I love the way you wrote about the unicorns, I could definitely see them, in all their splendor, inside my head. I’m also impressed by your ability to make the reader empathize with Parvati, not only in her stress and angst, but in the peace she finds when visiting the unicorns. It gave me the same sort of feeling. I think this story is especially appropriate right now, considering all the awfulness that has gone on around the world recently. I think everyone could use a visit with the unicorns. Unfortunately they don’t exist, so it’s very lucky there are fics like yours to do the job for them. <3
I don't think making you cry was the intention here, but I'm glad that you liked it? <3 I haven't really written Parvati at all before; I remember writing a one-shot about Padma very early on, and I've written about Lavender, of course, but it was so interesting to explore her character here. I'm so pleased that you thought I managed to give her depth and humanity in this story, despite how short it is. The idea of her going to visit the unicorns as her little means of escape from everything that's happening around her felt right for her, since we know she found them beautiful when they first studied them, and I'm happy you thought it captured a little of the sense of peace that she got from it.
Thank you for this lovely review!