Hello, again! Back with your other prize review for the Unreliable Narrator Challenge! ;)
Poor Alba... looks like she hurt herself pretty bad with the fall... having to suspend the cures because they would interfere with the healing... it must have been a hard blow... she's not going to catch a break, is she?
The "argument" with James at the beginning was... interesting. I can understand why she would be annoyed at him for interfering, but I can also understand why he would do so, and why he would alert the Professors. He's worried for her health, obviously, and he's trying to do what is best for her, even if she feels like he's sabotaging her right now... anyway, their dynamic is so good.
I'm wondering what's up with Chandra? I didn't expect the apology from her, either... I suppose a lot of her earlier rudeness comes from being jealous of the relationship between James and Alba? I suppose a girlfriend might feel "menaced" by such a strong friendship... and I do wonder if there other feelings there on both sides, to be honest? After all, James displayed some jealousy at the sight of Alba with Benjamin as well... Mmmh... I don't know...
Speaking of Benjamin, he seems like a fun guy, I like him so far. Although I'm a bit worried about possible second purposes... reading fanfiction has made me suspicious, what can I say... anyway, I'm curious to see how all the relationships and balances among the different characters will evolve from here, there are so many layers already...
I'm loving this story so far, and I can totally see why it was nominated for FROGS. Wonderful job on this, darling!
Thank you so much for participating in the challenge and congratulations on your second place! :D
Lots of love,
Hello! Here with the first of your prize reviews! :)
And I can definitely see why this story is so appreciated... this first chapter was just so good!
Alba is so very strong. I don't have much experience with disabilities but you show the struggles so well, and the external reactions, and the willpower it takes to keep going... I love the Stand Tall mantra, it's so good.
I love the friendship between her and James already. Their first encounter was absolutely sweet and I love that you included that little scene from their first year. Both Potter boys were absolutely adorable, and I loved how simple and natural it was for her and James to team up together. His perfect hand was warm in hers, unlike the cool metal bar of the crutch. His smiled widened as she took a step forward, and he didn't seem to mind that she had to borrow his strength to keep her balance now that crutch was dangling from her forearm. He matched his pace to hers, and, hand in hand, they crossed through to platform 9 ¾ and boarded the Hogwarts Express, Alba's head held high, smile beaming out for all to see. I love this paragraph, it's so good and it made me smile! :)
Then the jump forward in time, and I love that their friendship is still the same. The way they tease each other is so sweet, you can just tell how well they know and how much they care for each other. And the fact that he's always by her side, but never making her feel like he pities her or anything like that... I love it. I think James Potter is just special that way.
But I'm a little bit surprised that James is Head Boy? Maybe because I'm so used to think of him as a big mischief maker... :P (then, again, his grandfather was Head Boy, which is absolutely crazy... but, well, whatever... I think it's hilarious that he shows off his badge so proudly, though! Eheheh!)
I really don't like James' girlfriend? Her reaction at Alba covered in mud was just nasty. Don't you have the slightest bit of compassion, Chandra, honestly?! But I guess some people are like that. I wonder how long her relationship with James will last...
And I also wonder about the Tournament... will James sign up despite Harry's concerns? Knowing him, he probably will. Of course he doesn't risk to be teleported away and his blood being used to resurrect Voldemort, but I think the Tournament is pretty risky just the same, and I don't think Harry would want his son to face a dragon, either... but we'll see, I guess...
Anyway, this was such a great first chapter and a wonderful premise for your story! Moving on to chapter 2 now!
Lots of love,
It always makes my day when I see that Alba is back!! So glad you are continuing this story. I love the way Alba finally expressed her feelings to Ben. Quite brave of her to admit all that! She is one of my very favorite OCs - and I'm quite excited for the next task and the next relationship development.
I went back and re-read the last several chapters in preparation to "get ready" for the deliciousness of reading this one. And I think I might have caught an interesting little hint that I didn't notice before, about someone who may have some unexpected unrequited feelings. I wonder if there may be another piece to that too... filing this away to watch for in future chapters. :)
I am so sorry it takes me so long to post new chapters! The second task is QUICKLY approaching! As for the last bit of your review- I plead the fifth! 😉 Can’t wait to hear about more of your investigative prowess.
Hey Chelts, here again because I have no chill and also for BvB Team Bronze! :)
So there are a lot of things happening in this chapter, all of which are mildly bombastic. And I love ALL OF THEM. I mean, they kind of suck, but make so much sense as we continue approaching the climax of the Triwizard Tournament. The promise of Vesela not to reveal Alba's secret and Ginny's immediate horror at learning it are just perfect. And then we don't even get a break for poor Alba -- she's told she must stop taking her potions immediately as the second task may begin at any moment and she must be free of the effects now rather than do her weaning over several days. Just the outcry from her team made me tear up a bit, honestly, and the entire scene in the trophy room was written extremely well. James trying to support her is sweet, but Ben coming in and truly assisting her is wonderful because of his abnormal absence at breakfast now being made up by feeding her and taking her to the owlery. I LOVE Vesela's character development here because wow you've really fleshed her out (go [spoiler]) and I understand much more why Dimitri chose her as his companion.
So please update soon because I cannot WAIT to see how all of this climaxes! :)
Hi Chelts, here for BvB Team Bronze!! :)
OKAY SO THAT ENDING HOLY CRAP!!! Honestly, I just can't even start there I have to go back to the beginning because you have TWO big events happening here!! First of all, I'M SO HAPPY BEN AND ALBA KISSED!!! Although the circumstances weren't perfect due to the mention of James and Chandra and Alba's ~feelings~ towards him, it was still wonderful. Very curious why Ben wasn't at breakfast the next morning, but no matter, I'm sure we'll find out soon enough. I love the idea of the "girl power" interview and Ginny turning it into something actually substantial (to the eventual chagrin of her editors). The insight into Vesela's character is lovely and makes me feel less annoyed by her character because we see why she acts the way she does. And then Alba just explodes with all of her built-up emotions and it's wriitten so well in that yes, she's basically screaming about all of the things that have gone wrong for her this school year and also in life in general, but the fact she reveals the biggest secret about herself regarding the Triwizard Tournament -- that's just the icing on the cake. I can't even wait to read what happens next so I'm moving on because this is such a HUGE cliffhanger!! Great job as always on this chapter!! :)
Thank you for updating!
Hiya again for BvB Team Bronze :)
Alrighty then. That's a very interesting way for the points & places to have broken down for the first event. But after Dimitri's explanation, it makes a lot more sense and I still don't know why he's got Vesela as his companion still because clearly she's not doing anything to help him very much! So cute that the Mediator wanted to hear all about how Alba won the first event, too! The bit about the Yule Ball -- classic. And Alba being upset about James & Chandra being back together. I can tell she's just so conflicted about it and him because he's also her best friend but she probably (definitely) has a hidden crush on him that she refuses to acknowledge because she knows that Chandra and James are good for each other (ish). But YES BEN asking her to the Yule Ball!! His tirade had definitely been something he's kept in for a while and clearly he knows something about Chandra that James and Alba likely don't know. I'm almost certain she put Alba's name in the Goblet of Fire instead of her own but uagh I just want everything revealed!!! Also, I love Nurse Wainscott taking control of Alba's hair -- she knows Alba almost better than Alba herself does, and that she deserves a beautiful look for the Yule Ball. I'm SO EXCITED for the next chapter!! :)
I'm back again for BvB Team Bronze :)
OKAY HI I HAVE LOTS OF FEELINGS ABOUT THIS CHAPTER!! First of all, it's very long because you have so many things that happen here and honestly, I'm not even mad that it's almost 8.5k because I think it would have felt weird to break it up into smaller halves because everything just flows so well together I didn't even realize it was so long until I scrolled back to the top to start my review. Just wanted to say again, how much I love the tokens and their shapes as chess pieces of King, Bishop, and Knight. James's creation of Alba's emblem too is neat and fits perfectly as a white elephant. He clearly knows her very well and it shows explicitly in his creation of her emblem. I also like the mental chess game the two of them have going in an attempt to possibly determine what the first task is to be. The weighing of the wands ceremony plus the team interviews being written by Ginny just makes that whole scene so much better for Alba. She knows her interviewer well so she knows that the bulk of the article on the Tournament participants won't deal with her CP at all. I'm happy to see that Ben seems to be feeling better and is back to teasing Alba about holding hands and such again too!
AND WE GET THE FIRST TASK YES!! I was highly anticipating what you were going to come up with for the tasks, and whether or not they'd be similar to what happens in GOF for Harry and co. I love this idea of having to recreate the three tokens out of 5 various magical items and be the first to do so while also fighting off the other two champions. This was written so effortlessly, the task flows beautifully even as Alba isn't paying attention to her competitors. The announcer in the background helps with that, and also gives the reader a bit of a different perspective as the task progresses as well. And Alba's done it! Finished first with some nice sabotage thrown in there as well. I hope she wins for most accurate depiction as well as just getting first in the time aspect of the event. Great job with this monster of a chapter! :)
Hello again, here for another round of BvB for Team Bronze! :)
Okie dokie so once again, great chapter! I really hope that Alba & Dimitri form a good friendship during school year and during the Tournament, even though they are competititors. He seems like he's a genuine guy but who knows why he chose the rude Vesela girl to be his companion -- especially since as soon as she heard James's last name she immediately tried berating him for being Alba's friend and "letting" her compete in the Triwizard Tournament. She seems likely to be Dimitri's downfall, if I do say so myself, because of her snobbish nature. I like how you've written this middle-aged Viktor Krum though -- he's very much in character to how he was written in the GOF book which I quite enjoy. But poor Benjamin -- knowing how he feels about Alba and having her snap at him because he thinks she's in love with James or something stupid like that because she chose him to be her Companion when he very well knows he can't be anyway because he's underage and it's not because she doesn't like him. Augh. Just, so much hurt and anger and wounded pride to go around with Ben and James and Alba's triangle. I'm honestly very happy too that Alba's not having to give up her potions regimen until the tasks approach -- it would have put her at a severe disadvantage from the get-go simply because she's not up to a base standard level of physicality compared to her competitors. These new tokens that each Team is going to be measured by are very curious indeed and I like the ambiguity you've provided so far as to how they do their measuring. I'm so excited!! Onwards I go :)
Hello again! :) Here for Blue vs. Bronze once more!
Alrighty so we know James didn't put her name into the Goblet, and we also know now that he and Chandra broke up, likely because of this whole debacle. This breakup for them also seems to be much more final than others in the past have been. I'm honestly hoping that it was Chandra that put Alba's name into the Goblet instead of her own because that would make SO MUCH SENSE. OKAY so Ben has been needing to see Nurse Wainscott as well.....which is also very suspicious to me, but I'm not sure in what kind of way. I felt super uncomfortable for Alba when Nurse Wainscott sadi that she was happy that Alba ahd her whole team together in front of Ben even though he was not a part of it. It was super nice of her though to consider him and wait for him like he always does for her as they went to the Owlery. So nice of Ben too to let Alba use his owl to send the letter to her mum about her being chosen as the Hogwarts champion for the Triwizard Tournament. I also quite enjoyed Alba's meeting of the Durmstrang champion and his rude companion girl. He seems....lively and I hope to see more of him later on, especially during the Tournament. He's got a fun personality already from just this brief interaction with Alba and Ben, and I so hope you've given us more! I'll be back again soon to see how things are developing!! :)
Back again for BvB with Team Bronze! :)
OKAY WAIT HOLD UP JAMES DID NOT PUT HER NAME INTO THE GOBLET!?!? THEN WHO DID IT?!!??! CHANDRA?????? OH MY GODHHD YOU ARE MAKING ME QUESTION EVERYTHING!!
Sorry again, the all caps were kind of necessary :P Alrighty then, so I actually really liked the concept you created here with the Ravenclaw House Meeting! It's very much a Ravenclaw-thing to do, and the order and systems in place by the Mediator just make so much sense. Alba's careful, practiced explanation of her condition with cerebral palsy and the demonstrations she provides her housemates and the questions she answers also helps the reader out a lot. I have a very basic knowledge of CP, but this was a very clever way of more fully explaining it to your readers who may have no knowledge whatsoever of CP and how it can vary in its degree of severity. AND THEN JAMES FREAKING SIRIUS POTTER! WHAT IS GOING ON THERE HOLY CRAP. These two need to unpack so much stuff right now, like, I can't even coherently explain my feelings on this right now. They need to figure out who put her name in the Goblet (my bet is on Chandra, she seemed far too prideful when she put her paper in, and she was earlier concerned that she had no chance, plus she definitely has it out for Alba in some format because of her closeness to James that threatens her).
I'll be back soon to finish this up because it is just SO FREAKING GOOD!! <3
Once again, here for BvB Team Bronze! :)
OKAY SO last chapter you had me all freaked out and whatnot and now I'm all teary-eyed and sad. Chelts, you are ruining me with this fic! Alba's outburst at Chandra was rightfully deserved, although it definitely did not help the situation that she was in full public view of her fellow students. Furthermore, because James's name got dropped, it'll definitely get talked about for MONTHS and Alba will get no rest, the poor soul. I really hope that she gets to chew James out about what he did because she was a good friend and didn't rat him out to McGonagall for putting her name into the Goblet (wow ~parallels~ here with Harry, nice!). He deserves a good yelling because he thinks he has things under control and knows what he's doing but with this development he clearly does not have any control and has no idea what he's doing. Besides very much hurting his best friend, of course. I really want to see what Ben has to say about the development with Alba too because he was still missing and I JUST NEED MORE BEN/ALBA INTERACTION!! You did a great job with Alba and McGonagall in her office -- she's a very to-the-point woman, (even with the biscuit offering) and trusts Alba's words because she knows who she is as a student and a person from their previous sessions in her office. I look forward to seeing who Alba ends up selection for her Guide and ooooh the decision for Companion. On I go!
Here for BvB Team Bronze once more (I'm going through your whole lovely story) :)
OKAY I HAVE SO MANY THINGS GOING ON IN MY HEAD RIGHT NOW FROM THIS CHAPTER HOLY CRAP! THE NEW RULES FOR THE TRIWIZARD TOURNAMENT! ALBA THINKING ABOUT BEN IN A DIFFERENT WAY MAYBE! JAMES BEING A SON OF A GUN AND SUBMITTING ALBA'S NAME TO THE GOBLET OF FIRE! ALBA GETTING CHOSEN BECAUSE OF WHAT HE'S DONE AND THE HORROR ON HIS FACE AS HE REALIZES WHAT HE'S DONE! ALL OF IT JUST AHHHHH!
Okay i'll be done with the caps lock now, but HOLY CRAP did you write one heck of a chapter here, Chelts! I love the buildup with the introduction of the Goblet and then the subsequent chatter about who's going to enter and who isn't, etc. Ben's absence from the Great Hall during the Halloween feast has me worried in a peculiar way. We know James and him have met now on several occassions and have a tentative cordiality towards each other due to Alba, but I wonder if James maybe confided in Ben about his plan for submitting "his" name for the Goblet of Fire? Ah just WHO KNOWS ANYMORE, GAH! I've gotta continue because you can't just leave it at a cliffhanger like that, alright?!
Hello again! :) Here for BvB Team Bronze!
ALRIGHTY THEN LETS GET THIS TRIWIZARD TOURNAMENT SHOW ON THE ROAD!!! I loved the bit with the Potters and the bouillabaisse during dinner because that just speaks to classic teenage boy eating habits to me and us girls being like, uh no thanks, that's disgusting. Durmstrang is here, woohoo! AND YOU HAD GIRLS COME TOO THANK YOU OMG I hated that they did the gender separation in the GOF movie, let me tell you. I also quite enjoy that you had Viktor Krum be there as a Guide and Arithmancy Professor of Durmstrang -- it really gives him depth besides being a former world-class Quidditch player and Tournament champion, so nice work there! I'm curious to see if there's anything to why the Durmstrang Headmaster didn't come along. Ahhh now I see what Chandra's deal with the mud was -- very well portrayed here and explained in a neutral way too by Albus, which I really appreciate. We often throw around "OCD" and "bipolar" in common vernacular and we really shouldn't, so I appreciate the time you took to make it not only realistic but also not talked about in the way we tend to do as a society. Okay, bless Nurse Wainscott trying to play matchmaker for her favorite charge. I'm curious to see if you start the next chapter with the Beauxbatons arrival or not so I'm off to that! :)
Once again for BvB Team Bronze! :)
Alrighty so Maude seems like she is very observant but also not at the same time, and also knows routines fairly well (regarding Alba at least) so I'm curious to see how she interacts with Alba later on in various other settings like studying and the like for NEWTS. The breakfast scene is SO WELL WRITTEN!!! It's done in a way that truly makes it feel realistic and applicable in real life situations and James being concerned about the well-being of his best friend. Also, the interruptions by Ben were priceless and true to his character. Even the asking her out again for the umpteenth time and brushing her rejection off was fun. I do hope these two have a future or something, I just NEED something!!! The interactions that Alba has with Nurse Wainscott are nice and honestly refreshing -- we don't see much about the Hospital Wing or students that could be regular visitors there in canon, so I love seeing your expansion of it here. Okay now what is with that wink that James throws at Alba outside the Great Hall!??! What is he going to do?!? Onward I go to find out!
Okay hi again here for BvB Team Bronze! :)
I'm very curious to see how you delve more into Alba's use of Strengthening Solution, Pain Philter, and how she does physical therapy now that she has to wait for her cut to heal. James's feelings towards her injury and his immediate pain over her very public escorting from the Great Hall during the feast is something I'd love to see the two of them unpack sometime, but clearly it wasn't going to happen during this chapter because he was too late to meet her at Ravenclaw tower. Bring on the jealousy and pain because I am here for it! I love Benjamin Honeypucker and his relationship with Alba too -- he also doesn't pity her for having CP but also doesn't let that stop him from 'helping' her up the stairs and having a good time with her while at it. I hope they develop better as friends because he just seems like a really great guy. I am curious too about Chandra and what her deal is with not only Alba but also her issues from the carriage maybe getting dirty from the mud on that first night. I'll be back shortly for chapter 3! :)
Hey hey! I'm here for BvB on Team BRONZE and also because I've been meaning to read this properly for AGES! :)
Okay so first of all, I LOVE that this is next-gen with James Potter being the best friend of your character Alba because often times next-gen focuses on Albus beign best friends with someone, so I'm happy to see lots of James interactions that'll be happening! Furthermore, I already love Alba so much. She's so well written and I'm very excited to see how you go with her because she's got so many different facets to herself besides her intelligence, friendship with James, and her disability. Speaking of which, I'm very curious to see how you work her cerebral palsy further into the story and her time at Hogwarts. One of my classmates in high school had CP and while she didn't need crutches to walk, she did have ankle braces and it definitely took her a lot longer to get around places, but she was (is) smart as hell so I'm happy to see you've created Alba in a similar manner. Her disability does not define her, as you've clearly illustrated already within the first train scene and with getting to the carriages as well.
Honestly I'm just loving this so much already and I can't wait to see what happens next! :)
I love this story, please keep writing.
Don't worry, we still have two more tasks honey!
Aww nooo. I felt so bad for Alba with the healing setback! and you portray the physical exertion of it all so well. I liked the weird interaction with Chandra, so much mystery. And loving Benjamin as well as the weird jealousy stuff with James - looking forward to seeing where it goes!
Haha! Glad to see you're as invested in these character relationships as I am.
Hola! I am here for Nargles reading (we shall see how far I get ahha) and loving the first chappie. Lovely introduction to Alba - her challenges, pride, vulnerabilities. Your portrayal of CP is fab as well. And I like James, can't wait to see where their development goes! Also - 'stand tall' is a lovely meaningful phrase aww.
Thank you! I was afraid it was getting too repetative later on, but in the beginning it was quite nice.
Okay so I promised you I was going to review this once it was up, and it’s been a few days but I’m here now! I just read through the entire chapter again, and ugh it’s so good. I’m so happy that you’ve picked this up again, and I’m actually really amazed at how flawlessly you write in their voices after so many years! <3
First and foremost, BEN KISSED ALBA. WHAT. I mean, I ship these two very much, so I’m so so happy, but I can’t believe it actually happened!! This whole time, I thought Alba was too hung up on James to let someone else into her life, but it turns out that wasn’t the case, and I’m very, very happy. I hope Alba will continue to open herself up to other people other than James, like Ben and Maude, because I am very happy right now and so I have high ambitions for her.
Though I want to know…who did Chandra cheat on James with?? Not gonna lie, my first thought was Ben, because he sat there feeling miserable a few chapters ago, didn’t he? But I’m going to be an optimist for once and say that he wouldn’t do that, because he’s not the type of person to do that. Still, though. Chandra cheated on James??? Whaaat.
Also I loooved learning more about Vesela! I think it’s very impressive that she’s so capable, and that she managed to win this position with her own merit. Even if she is really terrible to Alba. The fact that even she didn’t seem to know why she was chosen as Companion made me super curious about it. I hope it’ll be revealed soon! I’m very eager to figure out this relationship between the two.
And then Alba’s part was my favorite scene of the section, when she was telling Ginny Weasley that there wasn’t any particular reason that she left her hair long other than the fact that she liked it. Because, like, while Ginny’s points about forced femininity in the public make sense to a degree, a lot of times, intersectionality isn’t considered too often in mainstream feminism. So I just really liked getting to see Alba’s take on that, and hearing her voice and opinion.
Such a good chapter! Thank you for picking this story up again! <3
Just found this story and read it all in one go. I’m loving it so far!
Thank you so much! Keep on checking back for more!
Oh, I'm so happy you and Alba are back! And glad she may be giving Ben a chance after all. I like him! Should be interesting to see what happens with this unintended admission...
We're back! and we will be back again soon!
I can’t believe I’m at the most recent chapter omg. This story is charming and moving, and all of your original characters have so much spunk, energy, and personality, and not a single character is one-dimensional, and you are such a talented, talented writer, I don’t think it’s possible for me to not love anything you write. <3
I loved the preparations for the Yule Ball here! Alba’s disheartened spirit at the beginning was so saddening because of all the implications that come with it. If no one made such a huge deal gawking at her braces, then she wouldn’t feel so self-conscious that the dress revealed everything underneath her knees. And that’s just so terrible, no one should have to be made to feel bad for wearing something that helps them.
I have to be honest, makeovers are my guilty pleasure. I just really like the fun and excitement of makeup and dresses and prettiness, because how often do people get to wear such fancy things, anyway? So I’m so glad that Alba got to experience all that too, because for me prom is coming up and I’m about to go through the same whirlwind of clothes and makeup hahaha.
And I am so so happy that Chandra helped Alba out omg. Chandra’s definitely a girl who’d be good at makeup, and I’m just absolutely delighted that she used her skills to help another. Her idea of Disillusioning the braces was so smart, and the fact that she can change shoe-sizes so easily is just amazing imo. People who are fashionably sensible make me envious because they’re so talented haha.
The entire Yule Ball made me happy. I’m so glad that you included such a fun chapter amidst the stress of the tournament, because it’s amazing and I love it.
Alba…really likes Ben, doesn’t she? Which I can understand. He’s really lovely, Alba. <3
Ahhh I can’t believe this is it for now! I’ll be waiting in excitement for your next update, and as soon as it’s up, I’ll definitely come and leave you a review. <3
YES, ALBA. YOU ARE AMAZING AND I LOVE YOU AND I AM SO PROUD OF YOU.
But I’m so disappointed that Dimitri got last place! His explanation for why was rather saddening, and I’m just left trying to figure out still why he has Vesela as his Companion if he can’t stand her. I wonder if we’re going to see a development in their relationship, or if it will remain stagnant this whole time, because I do want him to do well. And I feel like for him to do well, he needs to have Vesela cooperating with him.
Also I’m trying to figure out what Chandra did. Was it what she said to Alba? Or was it something significantly worse? WAIT. Was she actually the one who put Alba’s name into the Goblet of Fire, then? If she was, why would she have yelled at Alba like that?
Okay. I have a theory. I think that Chandra put Alba’s name into the Goblet of Fire for the same reason that Alba suspected James of doing at first; Chandra didn’t want to participate because she was terrified, so she used Alba’s name because she was positive that the Goblet wouldn’t pick a girl with cerebral palsy as the champion. But then, when it turned out that Alba’s name was picked, she needed to throw people off her trail, so she yelled at Alba and pretended it was her fault for “making James put her name in.” But seriously, if all this is true, then Chandra is really honestly terrible. And I honestly don’t know if I’ve ever met a teenage girl who’s this terrible.
I’d like to know more of Dimitri and Vesela! Their enmity sounds so fascinating, I just want to learn more about them.
At first I didn’t really appreciate Ben asking himself to the ball for Alba, but then he did offer her a choice, so. Still. Ben, stop being so pushy, and stop guilting her into being your date. It’s not terribly nice.
Oh my god and every scene with Nurse Wainscott makes me want to cry. She’s just so kind and so loving that I want to hug her all the time, and I just. So much love to her. <3