I can’t believe I’ve never read this story before! Thank you for requesting from me, I’m really glad to have read this. It’s an important moment in Astoria’s life, and so actually seeing it depicted in full filled in a number of blanks for me.
Though, I am curious to know about this expansion in the Greengrass universe that you’re planning, and how it’s affected by my diversity in next-gen thread! Keep me posted on anything new that you write, or any edits that you make, because I’m really trying to wrack my brains on all the different possibilities of where you can go with this, and there are so many options that I’m pretty much just coming up blank haha.
Anyway! You wanted to know if there were edits you could possibly make to this, and I don’t think so. Because. I mean, you show everything so well. The parts where Astoria ended up cutting herself were hard to read, but they’re supposed to be hard to read. It’s not a good place to be in, and I felt for Astoria, that the war damaged her that much. It also says a lot about how much she actually went through during the war, all the curses and the humiliation done by the Carrows, and I think it does paint a horrific portrait of what happened during the war, and it’s a picture that needs to get across to the readers. And what Daphne did, as well.
What she did to Astoria was terrible.
I am actually so furious at Daphne. She’s an older sister. She should know better than anyone how to take care of her younger sister, and it makes me sick that she did this. Ughhh reading about siblings like this just makes me so mad. How hard is it to treat your younger siblings like people?? (Your Daphne is a really fun character to be angry at haha.)
That lesson that Brendon taught Astoria was really interesting. (And I also found it really interesting that Astoria ended up using this memory to produce her Patronus in the future. Like, this is a major moment in her life, and I feel kinda privileged that I get to see it tbh.) That she shouldn’t actively try to lash out against it, but to be an unmovable force, is a really fascinating way of looking at how to battle against the Imperius Curse. I wonder if Harry would’ve been good at this? He learned to defend his mind from potential invaders at a young age (though he wasn’t very good at it haha).
I thought this was a really heavy-hitting look into Astoria’s life after the war. And I’m not sure what type of Greengrass drama you’re planning in the future, but I think this is well-written and definitely good enough to be an important part of it!
I'm literally just going to breeze through every story in the Greengrass universe, and then I'll be done with all the ones you've written and won't have more and will be crushed.
But in other news, I liked this a lot! I really enjoy reading about Brendon and Astoria as siblings. They have such a good dynamic.
Characterization-wise, I think Brendon is such a strong OC. I understand his hestitance to teach Astoria to throw off the Imperius curse, but I was surprised he wasn't more worried that she would associate him with being cursed. That's what I would have worried about if I were in his place. Even if I was helping my sister, I would be afraid of causing her trauma that she would think of when she saw me. I loved his line about being the "immovable object versus the unstoppable force." That's so deep and can apply to so many situations. I loved it!
Astoria is so damn strong! I know I keep saying that, but it's so true and she's so amazing. Hearing what she went through with Carrows and how she's coping with it was so hard. It made me feel sick to read, but it was so important to her character, and it didn't feel exploitative or "just for the story." It felt real to the time of war and to the universe. And she came out of it. I love Astoria's determination, and I loved the moment when she realized she could do this and she would do this. And her vulnerability at realizing that Brendon knows what Daphne did is so real. She's just such a solid, human character. You never fail to impress me.
This story really added to the universe, and I was so happy to see Astoria begin moving forward. I know she has a ways to go, and I know this was only the beginning, but the author's note about this being what she'll think of when she casts a Patronus was so beautiful, and I'm so happy to hear she'll reach that point in her future.
You are amazing.
OK so this might be favorite Greengrass story yet. It sort of made me think of the iconic scene from Mulan during the "I'll Make a Man Out of You" song where Mulan's really weak at first and then grows stronger? Yeah. I'm going to have to reread this with the song playing—I'll probably finish the story feeling like I can climb a mountain or something haha!
Really though, this had such a wonderful and inspirational message. I loved the central theme of will and strength. Astoria has clearly always been such an independent character (I keep thinking about how she refused to leave when the professors were trying to evacuate the underage students), and I love the idea that this memory, where she seems to get her independence and her strength back, to some degree, is the memory she uses to conjure a Patronus is very powerful. To me, it speaks to her inner strength and to her fighting against her memories too because she wanted to learn how to fight against the Imperius Curse simply so that she could rest easy at night knowing that no one would be able to control her again.
The scene of her learning how to fight against the Imperius Curse was, simply put, freaking epic. I admire Astoria's resilience—though I could also seem some of the desperation and the lingering pain and I liked that she didn't master it right away, that seemed really realistic and much more befitting of her character. I love that she only succeeded when she became an "immovable object".
idk there is so much about this that I just loved. But mostly, I am so proud of Astoria! Ahhh amazing, just amazing! <3