Reviews For Like Ashes

Name: Rumpelstiltskin (Signed) · Date: 02 Jun 2018 11:36 AM · starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Story:Like Ashes Chapter: Like Ashes

O/ Hey!


Ugh, yeah, Draco was definitely in a pickle with the whole cursing Hermione thing. Understandably as a parent, Lucius wouldn't want to see Draco harmed in any way and, as you've said, someone as twisted and maniacal as Bellatrix Lestrange would have definitely not understood Draco's dilemma about cursing her and would've brought on serious repercussions.  Deciding to place Draco under the Imperius Curse must've been a tough decision and I can see why he did it (and I can see how Draco can see why he did it). However, I can definitely see why Draco would then avoid his father because of it. It was a lose-lose scenario and just an awful situation. 


It also makes sense that, with Draco trying to move on with his life, why he would be reluctant to go back to the manor. I imagine that the Malfoy family was never quite the same after everything that happened during the war and Draco's attempt to make amends and carry on with his life (a separate life from what his parents lead) would make things even more turbulent. And, you know, that fact that most of his parent's friends hate him in your universe and would probably not wince at the site of his head on a pike or something, but. 


I always, always, always will get a kick out of Draco checking his food for poison and I'm DYING thinking about Lucius berating him for insulting the owners of wherever they are by doing so. I mean, of course, I can see why Draco is paranoid but this quirk that he has is positively everything.


I love the way you portray Narcissa, too. She's motherly and she cares but she's extremely Pure-blooded in the sense of society and behavior (which makes sense because she's a Black and a Malfoy). And I LOVE that she nags Draco about his social life and how excited she got at the mention of a girlfriend. AND OH MY LORD THE REACTION TO DRACO TELLING THEM WHICH SISTER ASTORIA WAS. I can't -- it's too good. I think he broke Lucius, bahahahaha! And I love how desperate he is by trying to find the smallest hint that maybe she wasn't really a blood traitor after all. 


And Narcissa shines with her motherly self as she tells Draco that all that matters is that she makes him happy. At least there's that, because Lucius might burst a vein or something (which would be hilarious, but) and Draco definitely could use a little bit of support from at least one of his parents. I also caught that bit about Narcissa pausing before agreeing with Lucius about 'the other side' being 'the wrong side'. I think she could have changed some things had her circumstances been different (not that she isn't responsible for the choices she made; I just wonder what would have happened had things been different). 


Plus, Draco's missing Astoria which is AdorABLE! All the feels for Drastoria, my gosh. 


And of course Narcissa wants to meet her but it's totally understandable why Astoria wouldn't necessarily want to meet the Malfoys. I think that, despite everything, it was nice that Lucius both covered about the whole meeting Astoria thing (quite like to spare his wife's feelings) and eventually resigned to the fact that Draco was dating Astoria (and not her sister). But that's all I'm willing to give him. 


Another fantastic story! 




Name: ReillyJade (Signed) · Date: 05 Jan 2018 09:50 PM · [Report This]
Story:Like Ashes Chapter: Like Ashes

Ahh, yes, you've done it again. :) This is brilliant!


This is exactly how I'd imagine a scenario like this playng out. Lucius and Narcissa are spot-on: he's stubborn, bitter, and set in his ways, while she goes with the flow but ultimately only wants her son happy. You continue to amaze me with your talent for characterization. Your dialogue choices always mesh with the personalities of the characters (nothing sounds too formal when it shouldn't, for example), and that can be a tricky thing to pull off.


And this piece just... flows nicely. I wish I could figure out a way to put that more eloquently. I guess what I mean is that when there are more than two characters in a scene at a given time, it's easy to get too dialogue-heavy (I'm totally guilty of this, haha), but you struck a good balance between dialogue and narrative.


I've never thought of Astoria as a Ravenclaw before, but given the way you've shaped her character, I think it makes total sense. I like it!


This was yet another stunning piece from you. You should be very proud of it! <3




Name: Renacera (Signed) · Date: 09 Dec 2017 05:50 PM · [Report This]
Story:Like Ashes Chapter: Like Ashes

Hello friend!

And so begins my "read absolutely everything you've written" craze! Away we go!

DRACO DRACO DRACO! I am so excited that I found this story. You know how much I love my Draco, and I am literally so excited to get into your head and explore your Draco. This is going to be so much fun.

So, to begin, I suppose I should say that I absolutely love your Draco. I love how nonchalant he is (which I feel really harkens back to canon). I love how exhausted he is by his parents (who hasn't felt that way? and we don't even have dynamics THAT dramatic with ours!). I love that he clearly is head over heels for Astoria (who I am SO excited to get to know in your universe). He was amazing.

In addition to that fabulous characterization, Lucius and Narcissa were wonderful too! They were so posh and annoyed, but trying desperately to grasp at something familiar. The only CC I have is about Lucius's last line though: I can't necessarily see him saying "arse." It just seems like such a "low" word for him to use. But other than that, great Malfoy parents!

Moving on from characters: I love the setting that you chose for this scene. I like that Draco isn't comfortable staying at the Manor. It adds such an element to his current relationship with his parents and how far he's come since the war. (Which, omg, he says he was on the wrong side of! Ahh!) So I love that you chose this pureblood-clientele restaurant. I would've liked a bit more imagery in the setting to ground it more, but I liked the concept a lot. (It reminded me of my Permanence scene with Lucius and Narcissa!)

The conversation that the Malfoys had was very real and solid. You did a great job capturing the dynamic between them and their individual places in life at this moment. I can't wait to read more of your Draco and Astoria stories!

Great job!


Name: Crimson Quill (Signed) · Date: 04 Dec 2017 03:34 PM · [Report This]
Story:Like Ashes Chapter: Like Ashes

Hello Branwen,


I thought this was a really interesting piece because of the way you've used Draco. I'm always quite afraid to write Draco but you've done a really good job here. We don't see so much of this side to Draco in the books but I really like the way that you've developed his character through his experiences in the books into the character that we see in this piece. I know Astoria and Draco are favourites of yours as it really shows in your writing that you care about their stories. It makes this piece so strong. 


I adore Narcissa's role in this story as 'annoying mother', how concerned she is about Draco not making friends and stuff but I loved how she's interested in his new girlfriend. I thought the characterisation for her was really good because I can imagine her as that sorta of mum. I like how you played Lucius as totally different from Narcissa's parenting style. I find it very realistic and ring true to what I might imagine this situation to be like in my own head.


I think Astoria is awesome even though she doesn't even appear in this piece. I loved her teasing of Draco and the line 'The thought of how thrilled Astoria would be if she knew that Lucius Malfoy was calling her a blood traitor' which awesome that shows a lot of her character. I think it also shows how much Draco is really into her as she imagines how she would react to situation if she was there. There is obviously such a connection between the two of them. 


good job on this piece!


- Abbi xo

Name: nott theodore (Signed) · Date: 03 Dec 2017 12:24 PM · [Report This]
Story:Like Ashes Chapter: Like Ashes



I've really enjoyed your stories that I've read about Astoria, in particular, and I really enjoy the idea of her being a blood traitor and someone who the Carrows had on their list of students who weren't behaving acceptably.  Not that I'm glad that she's suffered for her beliefs the way she obviously has, but because I really like the idea of the way that Astoria having a similar background to Draco, but having made different choices, shows him how cowardly he was.  I think it's clear in this piece that she's starting to have that effect on him, and make him think - like when he makes his mum admit that they were on the wrong side during the war, or the fact that he doesn't want to associate with all of the same people as before.  


Ugh - the opening, though, and the idea that his father used the Imperius Curse on him.  I mean, it doesn't surprise me exactly, but it's still an awful thing to do.  No wonder Draco doesn't want to spend much time with his parents, and much less return to the family home where he saw so many atrocities being committed.


I really liked the way that Draco thought of Astoria - it was so easy to tell how much he thought of her just when she was mentioned, before he even admitted to his parents how he felt.  She seems like a really good match for Draco, and I'm glad that Narcissa, at least, wants to meet her - it didn't go quite as badly as it could have done, after all.


Sian :)

Name: Stella Blue (Signed) · Date: 02 Dec 2017 12:42 PM · [Report This]
Story:Like Ashes Chapter: Like Ashes

Hi! Reviewing for the winter wonderland.

I read this when you first posted and... I could have sworn I reviewed then, but I guess I didn't. Time to fix that now. I really loved this story, and it's evident you have a really firm grasp on your headcanon of Draco and Astoria - like there is a lot of backstory alluded to here  and you're just so comfortable with the characters, that implies you've got their whole lives planned out. (because you probably do - I know you write a lot of Draco/Astoria haha) You also have such a wonderful and distinct writing style. It's easy to read and I feel like I am comfortably sitting there in Draco's head, a character who I've never particularly loved before, but there's a lot of depth in the way you write him.


I kinda feel bad for him too, because by his account, he kind of just got swept up into things and he hates his role in the war. He's changed a lot, and wants to dissociate from his past - and going round for tea at his parents' manor where he was supposed to torture a classmate probably doesn't fall into that catetory. And restaurants that mainly cater to purebloods probably doesn't bring up good memories or make him comfortable either, so I really liked this view into how he sees thigns after the war.


He would have liked to think that it was the latter, which meant that it was probably the former. -- :P For some reason I really liked this line. I think it says a lot about who Draco is and how he's at least aware of his own faults. His sense of humour in this fic is very subtle, a sort of dry humour and I love it.


Astoria doesn't even physically show up in the fic and I feel like I already have a pretty good idea of what she's like, based on what Draco thinks of how she would react to certain things.


even though her sympathy when it came to his family’s history and any inner turmoil he felt over it was completely nonexistent, being around her always made him feel less [terrible]. -- IThis in particular shows a lot of who Astoria is, she seems like someone who is always totally honest with you even when it's not 100% what you want to hear, she doesn't say nice things just because she knows you want to hear them. As I understand it, she fully disapproves of Draco's actions in the war and he knows that, but he also knows that she loves who he is now. That's what I get from this anyway.


I think Lucius and Narcissa's different responses are very interesting - like Lucius is disapproving at first whereas Narcissa is the one who really tries to show Draco how happy she is for him that he's happy by showing her interest in meeting Astoria, but it's Lucius who kind of sees the other side and fully understands that Astoria may not necessarily want to meet them. I liked the way you showed their different reactions and the different ways they both care.


but Lucius double checking that Draco doesn't want to date his girlfriend's sister instead - hahaha


This was a great fic and I really enjoyed reading it!

Name: manno-malfoy (Signed) · Date: 02 Dec 2017 06:13 AM · starstarstarstarhalf-star [Report This]
Story:Like Ashes Chapter: Like Ashes

Hey there! I'm here for the winter wonderland.


I've been a fan of your Astoria/Draco stories for a while now (I've read a bunch of them, actually), but this might just be my favourite so far. Even in the absence of Astoria, you mannage to bring in an essence of her as you have Draco imagine what her reaction at most points of the conversation. And you know how much I admire your strong, opnionated Astoria (if you didn't, then now you know), so it was lovely to have her in spirit throughout this one-shot.

I think you portrayed Narcissa and Lucius magnificently. Everything was so intense from the get-go. From Draco obsessively sprinkling potions on his food to how you described everyone's body language to transmit this tension that hung in the room. I also found their reactions so realistic and organic, but most importantly true to the characters we've gotten to know over the years in the series.


 I relate to you Draco in this one shot because I have the same bad habit. He's cagey about the details of his life with his parents and when he does it, it's a bit passive-agressive, so he leads with the things that he knows would spite them first. I think it's also a very coming-of-age thing, where you're challenging how much control/influence your parents have on your life. In any case, What I'm trying to say is that this story spoke to me on more levels than you can possibly imagine.


I think that the most notable and admirable detail though was having Lucius so capable of reading Draco and realising that Astoria doesn't want to meet them. It goes to show that he wasn't only this evil, cold, villain, but also a very caring father who was driven into making bad decisions out of love for his family.


I noticed a couple of minor typo, so I thought maybe you'd want it point it out. There was something off with the part when Draco was shrugging and slouching. And I don't remember where, but at one bit you wrote 'much mattered' instead of 'mattered much', I think. But yeah, just tiny nitpicky things.


I hope you keep writing more of these because I've kind of gotten attached to your Draco/Astoria. And it would be amazing to see the day that Astoria actually meets the Malfoy. Boy, that would be intense. 


Keep up the wonderful work! Lots of love!

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