hi deni, finally here with your painfully long overdue requested review!! (let’s be real, every requested review I do is long overdue, but this one is a special sort of taylor-you-really-need-to-get-your-shit-together kind of overdue.)
so, last chapter, i made a comment about eddie being wrong for cassie because he doesn’t push her to be better, but i almost want to take that back now. because yes, he sat with her and let her wallow for a little and reminisced about their childhood together, but he also tells her that she needs to get her shot together, and rather clearly lays out her options going forward. like, he’s not *nice* about the way that he presents that third option, but that tough love is kinda what cassie needs right now to really accept that yeah, this is what she needs to do.
off-topic moment - does cassie’s patronus being a thestral mean that only people who can see thestrals can see her patronus?? i didn’t think about that before, but that kinda makes sense.
and then eddie tells her the truth that he was there for mary’s death, and that he told mulciber about it and is inadvertently the reason that sirius knows now - and not only that, but he knew that she was there and didn’t talk to her about it and LIED to her about not being there. there are two things said in this conversation that i just wanna focus on for a sec: eddie’s ‘one day you’ll thank me’ and cassie’s ‘i’ll never trust you again.’ because i think both of them are true - eddie being the reason that sirius knows about cassie’s involvement in mary’s death, and therefore being the thing that pushes her to tell sirius the full truth and presumably throw her family under the bus... it’s not going to be easy for cassie in the short-term, but in the long run, it’s so much better that she’s being forced to permanently pick a side and not holding onto something that she’s feeling so much guilt about. but this also seems like it’s pretty much the end of their friendship too, and cassie probably never will be able to trust him again either, so i think they’re both right in two totally different ways. (this is all purely speculation, I could be totally off-base, but that’s just where I think this is all heading on both of their parts)
wooooooo, thestrals flying!!! the description in this section is absolutely gorgeous, and I love cassie finally getting a chance to let go and feel freedom, even if only for a little bit. and it’s ironic that it happens on the back of a death horse, but she’s just so in her element that you don’t even think about that aspect.
and then this ending!! this cliffhanger!! she’s going to tell sirius everything!! i’m so curious to know what his reaction is going to be - if he’s going to be sympathetic towards her at all or continue to push her away. he’s so black and white sometimes, in that he doesn’t necessarily see why cassie has spent so long straddling both worlds, that i could really see it going either way. (although personally, i’m hoping for the former; you’ve only got like 5ish chapters left and i need enough time for maybe like, *some* happiness before you crush me again).
wonderful chapter, as always, and just think - this review request has literally taken me so long that you’re almost done with the next chapter!! so i’ll be back soon!!
I'm here to drop off a review for you as part of my fanfic favorite challenge! (And for Gryffindor's Red vs Gold Review Battle - June 2019 - Team Red) Thank you for allowing your story to be fanfic'd.
I started reading the first couple of chapter of this story awhile back and I found Cassie to be such an intriguing character. She definitely seems to have a lot of internal struggle over where exactly she fits in life. Clearly, while she isn't in line with the Death Eaters, she still has ties to people who are and that makes life with the Gryffindors very complicated. You really exemplify this with her relationship with the Marauders.
I think her tense relationship with Sirius makes perfect sense. Sirius is strong enough to walk away from his entire family at a very young age. He openly renounces the Death Eaters and eventually actively fights against them. For him, there is only one moral choice and he can't seem to understand why Cassie hasn't made it. And we all know that if Sirius can't understand someone, he's generally fairly hostile towards them (Ex: Snape)
I love that Remus is the peace keaper in this situation. That also seems fitting. While he's always up for some good mischief, he definitely has a much kinder disposition. His method of stopping the Snape vs. Sirius battle was good too. I could definitely see him hanging that over Sirius' head occasionally.
I'm really glad that I happened onto a chapter that talked about Cassie's feelings towards the thestrals since that was the topic that Abby's fanfic covered. It is definitely really interesting that she can see them when no one else can't, but surely at least a few people have seen people die in the entire school. I hope this is something that you'll expand on further in the story.
Great work! I'm looking forward to reading more of this excellent story soon.
i got lost in this story and right when I was at that point of talking to the story—I was so entwined in it—i am officially up to date with the current chapter and all you hear in my living room is “Noooooooooo”
the development of Cassie’s character, her relationship with Avery and her feeling so at odds till now, despite leaving home and saying she was done with the death eaters, finally she seems to have made the decision. It has been so hard for her being raised to be something she is obviously not. Being so young when she first sees death, being forced to witness and maybe even take part in her friends death, her death eater friends that she has known her whole life Avery and Mulciber, turning on her. The war is already started, and she has to choose. I’m so glad she chose the good side of the war.
Things are getting steamy with Sirius and I like how you describe how she feels surrounding all of that emotional stuff. She is so overwhelmed and just at a loss because of years of being raised so vastly different. Raised to be a death eater. Seeing what she has seen, doing what she has done, she hasn't really even had to be a normal girl with normal feelings.
Im so so curious what happens now though!!! Arrrrrghhhhh
Hey you in here for another review
So I really enjoy that Yaxley and Evans are friends, it's an interesting development I hadn't considered previously.
Avery one of my fav death eaters ;) being her buddy who can help her keep Evans off the list that's interesting to me. That there is a special list to keep some muggle born a safe. And that Severus seems to basically be a joke to the other future death eaters or at least to Yaxley. As if him asking to have Evans in the safe list means little and it means more coming from her. I like how you a pun that. spun*
I'm thrown that Yaxley is a GRYFFINDOR chaser! Really interesting. Though I did know that not all of the Voldemorts followers were from Slytherin I am curious to see where this story goes even more now, especially the curious reaction she has towards Sirius ðŸ˜ cuz he's my fav marauder.
This was really well done! A few grammatical things here and there but nothing that stood out.
Can't wait to read more!
Hey there Deni!
im so glad I finally found the time to check this story out! I will read some more tonight, but I wanted to leave you a review as I definitely owe you one.
i really liked the beginning of this story! Cassie sounds like a really great character, much like my favourite Black boy. I’m really curious about where this story is going to go!
Her mother and hers relationship sounds very strained and though it’s always sad when a main character, and especially female ones for whatever reason, are at odds with their mothers. Though it’s apparent that’s cassie doesn’t seem the slightest bit interested in and maybe even ashamed of her mother being a death Eater.
It sounds like Cassie likes simple Muggle clothing, and that her best friend being a muggle born is surprising given that her family is all on Voldemort’s side in the war. I feel like Regulas would be a good friend to her, but his age and his obvious interest in the war makes her less inclined to want to have any sort of connection with him.
I like the ever present Angsty feeling I get from Cassie’s thoughts and views of her life, the world and the war. I’m really excited to see how this story develops!
Deni! Here for CTF and the story of course.
That opening scene with Cassie and Eddie. SO MANY THOUGHTS. You reveal so much backstory that is so relevant to what's unfolding now, but it doesn't seem like a grand flashback or anything like that. It's like a quiet memory they're both reliving as they're damp and cold on the Astronomy Tower. I love that glimpse into their childhood: how they relied on each other for support, terrified of what would happen to their parents... and then Mr. Yxley came home, telling them stories from Beadle the Bard. It's such a tender memory, showing that he, a Death Eater, loved them...
And then Eddie goes and ruins absolutely everything... but doing the right thing, I might add. Telling the truth, laying out options for Cassie, even though they don't benefit him and what he wants. Eddie has done a despicable thing, keeping the truth from Cassie (even if he, too, was processing this horrific event himself--he was manipulating her this whole time). I've read this chapter in bits and pieces, and even though I ~knew~ what happens, I haven't felt this strong of an impact until the finished product. This opening scene is so well written!! (and so many wonderful nuggets hidden throughout!)
THAT SCENE WAS THE THESTRAL WAS AMAZINGLY BRILLIANT AND I LOVE EVERYTHING ABOUT IT IN CASE YOU CANNOT TELL FROM ALL OF THE CAPS LOCK! Deni, your descriptive writing really ~takes flight~ here (pun absolutely intended). Even though in the back of my mind, I was shivering because of the cold flight, the description you unfold as Cassie flies is stunning. I can see the lackscape and skyscape, how she's suspended in the air, at peace if only for a moment, how she thinks of Hogwarts as her home, how she decides to tell the truth (to protect others, how Gryffindor is that! Oh, I loved the mention of snakes and lions in that earlier scene with Eddie, by the way).
The ending of this chapter is perfect. Absolutely perfect. Sirius is watching out for her, Cassie comes to him. They're about to really take this to the next level. There really is no turning back.
And that is true for you, my dear, because there is no going back on finishing this story after this incredible chapter!! ;)
here for ctf!
It's good to see this story updated! Every chapters me wanting more as you've been leaving some wonderful cliffhangers recently. I think this chapter has again done it. I hope you have the next chapter already in the works because this has me begging for me!
I love the opening time with them. I thought it was good how the weather seem to reflect Cassie's mood. I enjoyed this element of nostalgia that you created when Eddie talks about things they use to do and her father coming home (obviously reading the beetle and bard to them.). It is funny how Eddie seems to remember things differently to her. this is chapter is such a big turning point for Cassie and I'm too excited about this. You've really ramped up the drama her. I really like that Cassie sees Eddie what he is but I think you've done a good job with Eddie. He doesn't feel like a simple 'villain' as the dynamic between him and Cassie is really interesting. He basically admitted that he loves her which is kinda crazy but he uses it as an excuse.
I think her not trusting him is so important because that's kinda what Eddie has going for him in regards to Cassie. She has always trusted him which is why she had pulling into the 'darkness'. I think it'll be interesting to see if we are going to see a big shift for Cassie or she was just slip back in with Eddie in the end.
The whole flying sequence was beautifully written. I just loved all that imagery, it was such vivid writing on your part. It's something that has really developed in your writing, it has made your stories so rich. I loved how you paired that realisation about how much she loves her friends.
I'M TOO READY FOR NEXT CHAPTER.
Deni! Here for our review swap!! The Yaxley roulette review game continues!!
That opening scene, bahaahahaha. Truly priceless. I love how you have the girls react this way (I've seen fics where Sirius would've done what Emme does), though that whole "Well done Potter" remark made me roll my eyes a little bit. But still, it's all the Jily fluff that we so desparately need, because I don't know if you've noticed, but this story is a wee bit dark and angsty...
I love how you draw out the tensions in this chapter. From Regulus's mysterious appearance and disappearance to the recollection of Eddie's talk in the Great Hall with Cassie to the Slytherins' appearance in the Three Broomsticks.
And then it allllll falls to pieces. I see what you did there. Snape, oh Snape... he knew exactly how to push all the right buttons, but I think Sirius put up a good retort. And then Eddie waiting for Cassie with his croons. I'm shuddering. He's a smart fellow, that's for sure, but he's wasting his talents with the wannabe Death Eaters.
Sirius and Cassie in the passageway back to Hogwarts: their banter is amazing, and you do a good job building that bridge between their hateful tension to neutral acquaintanes to maybe even friends to... well, you know. ;) You layer in so much history between the two characters, especially with all of the Pureblood connections. And the way Cassie is called a Blood Traitor is well written. She's been hearing that term for years. Even called people that. And now she's on the receiving end, and she's unsure of how she feels about that. She has such a long way to go, but Cassie has made so much progress!
And you end this chapter perfectly. Sure, the Slytherins spoiled the Marauders' day in Hogsmeade, but the Marauders got the last laugh with this briliantly concoted prank. Ahhhh, what a high note to end the chapter on. A good balance to the tensions in the middle of the chapter. Great job, Deni!! :D
No, I wasn't up to date... but I am now! *hug*
And wow, this was an heavy chapter... why can't they just... I'm not even sure what... be honest with each other, I guess? Make an effort to understand each other? I'm especially annoyed at Sirius right now... I can see his point of view, but also... it isn't Cassie's fault? And he should know it, since his experiences are not so different? Well, they are, but also they aren't... sorry, I'm making no sense...
I'm also annoyed at Cass, but more because of the denial in the beginning and the subsequent awkwardness... it's all a big mess, I get it, but you two fancy each other, so just admit it? Couldn't that be a good idea? Evidently not... *rolls eyes*
The bit with Lucile Blishwick... that was so sad... I hope she'll follow the advice and seek help from Dumbledore... ah, I so hate all these Pureblood families, forcing their children to take a side, to get involved in the war even if they don't want to... :(
Lessening the mood for a moment... have you ever wondered what on earth Dumbledore was thinking when he chose James as Head-Boy? :P But it was interesting to see him fitting into that role for once. And once again, it's so sad that he had to intervene at all... (oh, and another side note... I hate Mulciber! A lot! I just can't stand that guy, I've never had...)
I wish it had been Sirius, and not Eddie, comforting her in that final scene... I hope they'll make up (again, meaning Sirius and Cassie)? Maybe, but it'll probably take a while... This is all such a huge mess, and I want it fixed now (but I know if you fixed it now, I wouldn't have a wonderful story to catch up with...)
This review is a mess, as usual... sorry... but the point is that you did a brilliant job with it just as always! <3
Thank you so much for swapping, darling!
I'm back for another review for Gryffindor Red vs Gold - March 2019 - Team Red! After the twist at the end of chapter one, I'm so excited to see what happens here. I have to know exactly how this relationship developed.
I really love the way you've described Lily's room. It being well-loved really gives a stark contrast to the things that Cassie is familiar with. Just the way you described the carpet in her room in contrast to the cold marble floors I imagine in Pureblood Manors gave such a lovely affect.
OMG. The part about Mary's family is horrific. Even if Cassie didn't like Mary, it seems clear that she doesn't support this sort of action. I can definitely see why Lily is so outraged. It's something that she can relate to, something she probably already fears.
Lily's admission that James had written her was really sweet. It seems to me that I can see the beginnings of a crush developing. She's clearly a bit too embarrassed to mention it yet, but I think the idea of him being a Head Boy is maybe making her consider him in a different light than before.
So small side story. My first serious boyfriend was named Eddie. He was a terrible piece of work, so I particularly dislike the name.
Back to the review. Eddie seems a very apt name for such a loathsome person. I really dislike the way he's speaking to Cassie as if he's almost threatening her. I mean, I think he's, in his own way trying to protect her, but it comes across as a threat. I also like how casually he stunned a muggle when it was completely unnecessary and the nonchalant way he said he wasn't stupid enough to kill him in public. He does not seem like a good person at all.
I think it's very sweet that Cassie is putting Lily on the no touch list. I also think it's sweet and fitting that Severus also put her on the list. I suppose she should be lucky that a couple of pureblood's like her, but I feel like she'd absolutely hate it if she knew.
Ooh. There is definitely some past history with Sirius. Does he dislike Cassie because he thinks she's one of the wretched Purebloods who plan on slaughtering Muggleborns? I'd think they would bond well over their mutual disdain for pueblood society.
This was another really good chapter. I'll be over to the next one shortly.
I've been meaning to stop by this story for ages since it's received such rave reviews! Gryffindor Red vs Gold - Team Red - March 2019 seemed like the perfect reason to come check it out.
Immediately, I'm drawn into your character. I don't remember a ton about the Yaxley family from canon, just that Yaxley himself was a Death Eater. I like immediately that Cassie is conflicted about the war. She doesn't seem all that interested in Voldemort or his cause. In fact, she seems fairly disenchanted with the entire pureblood society.
Regulus is very well done in this as well. He immediately gives off that younger sibling, not quite old enough to be cool yet sort of vibe. He is clearly eager to please Cassie and you show that well with the way he says the things he thinks she wants to hear. It was really sad to see him ragging on Sirius, but I suppose that was to be expected. It's really tragic to view him as a child, spouting the beliefs that his mother has instilled in him. He's someone I always felt might've taken a different path had he been given the chance and I think you really captured that well here.
Honestly, I'm a bit surprised that Cassie's mum allowed her to leave during the party. I was half expecting her to be pawned off to a respectable pureblood male. I suppose it's easier to keep the peace though if she's allowed to come and go within reason.
I was a bit confused at first when she started packing up all of her stuff since she'd told her mum she was only headed to the Leaky Cauldron for a bit. It became more obvious as I read that she was planning on leaving a bit more permanently. I think that's probably for the best. While her mum seemed like she treated her okay, she is still a Death Eater supporter and I think it's best for her to get away from that.
I definitely did not see the ending coming. Even when you described the person looking out the window, I still didn't connect with who it was. It wasn't till that person had actually walked outside. That is a very intriguing twist. I can't wait to learn more about their friendship.
This was an excellent start to the story and I'm really looking forward to reading more soon.
Deni! March RvG and here for our swap because I finished a chapter.
That bargain was very effective, so be prepared for me to strike a similar one for the next chapter of Yaxley because... WOW! What a chapter!
The next morning: AHAHAHA. I love how it seems like they slept together, but really, they had only slept NEXT to each other after only a kiss in the garden. Way to tease your poor readers, Deni. But also, what a glorious thing to do to keep the tension going! Ah. It really gives the reader hope...
...which of course nearly goes away by the end of the chapter, but I'll get to that in a bit.
"All the while something buzzed in the back of Cassie's mind, something she buried deep, ignored and avoided." I feel like this lone sentence sums up the past 15 chapters of Cassie's character development beautifully. It is exquisite writing, Deni. My favorite line in the whole chapter!!!
Also, my original intention of pointing out that line was that I also liked how you showed time progression. It was simple, a tad understated, but fit really, really well with how the rest of the chapter unfolds.
That scene with Lucile Blishwick is masterfully done. I know that this scene wasn't originally planned, but I love how organically it unraveled and tied everything together. It gives us insight that it's just not Sirius Black or Cassie Yaxley who face rejection from pureblood society--or recruitment. Lucile is about to enter into very dangerous waters, something that Cassie has found herself in. I LOVE how Cassie tells Lucile to do what she should have done ages ago: go to Dumbledore. That near parallel between the two girls is amazing.
And then that ending fight... or should I say fights. The tension of the War has broken into the halls of Hogwarts. The details you give on everyone's reactions are spectacular. I can clearly envision the Slytherins and the Gryffindors barely keeping it together. And then Sirius and Cassie at the end--that chemistry! Hot to the touch and then that heartbreak when Sirius confronts her about Mary... it's just...
At first, I thought, "How can Deni make it any worse?"
Well, Deni, my dear, you definitely found a way. Eddie. GAH!!!
I'm so looking forward to the next chapter...which I hope is out soon! ;)
Hi! Here for March's RvG again!
I loved the insight that we got into Cassie's character here. Not just seeing her caught up in all the drama and the anger of the moment, but in the aftermath, when she goes to escape. Hiding away at this point is perfectly understandable, and I think the fact that she'd go to the highest point in the castle to try and get away from everyone, to be as close to the air and sky as possible, is really believable given what we know about her so far - her passion for Quidditch, and the fact that she wants to escape the life she's currently being forced to live.
It was intriguing to see that Pyra and Eddie were the ones to find her after a whole day of people searching, particularly when Eddie doesn't like to be seen with her in public that much. I think it certainly seems to speak to the fact that she has a shared history from childhood with these people, and even if Lily's her best friend now, there are things they probably know about her that Lily won't.
I really liked our introduction to Pyra, too - I hope that we get to see more of her throughout the story, because she seems so lovely from what I know and I've seen of her here! I'm glad that Cassie had somewhere to hide out away from Gryffindor and someone to hide out with.
The girls' concern is very understandable, especially Lily's after Cassie's tried to point out that she shouldn't go anywhere alone. Sophie's question intrigued me - I wondered if there was a deeper meaning to it. Even though Cassie brushed off the question with a joke about Sirius, I wouldn't be surprised if there's a suspicion there that she's safe around the castle alone because of her connections. Maybe that'll throw up some tensions or conflict in the future, especially as they learn about Mary?
Ah, the ending was so intriguing! And can I just say, I love the fact that you've got James telling her about this opportunity and it's this that makes Cassie start to reconsider her stance on staying or leaving after Hogwarts, not a relationship (that's not even started yet anyway)? It just makes me happy to see that spark of ambition and determination to prove herself doing something she loves. And how cute was James when she asked him about Lily? That was adorable! I wonder how long it'll be before those two get together, at this rate!
Deni! Here for March's RvG - but AHHHH!!!
This chapter was so dramatic and tense - and it escalated so quickly, it was really compelling and interesting to read!
The opening, as interesting as it was, kind of conveyed the sadness of the "new normal" that they're trying to find their way towards here, with the empty bed as a constant reminder of the fact that one of their housemates is missing, most likely dead, and the terrifying reality of that creeping into their lives. It's so easy to believe that Sophie wouldn't want to spend time in the room with that constant reminder of her friend, not knowing what's actually happened to her, and I really liked the way that, even without us having actually met Sophie, you managed to capture her character and her friendship with Mary so well.
I can definitely imagine Lily being the one that's appointed to go and talk to people about those sorts of things, too - she definitely seems much better suited than either Emme or Cassie for it!
The almost mundane nature of the way that they were all complaining about their homework and struggling to get it done on time was a really effective contrast to the rest of this chapter, as well.
As soon as Sirius sat in the seat next to Cassie, I could immediately feel the tension that introduced to the scene - you wrote it so well. And I have to admit, Sirius isn't doing himself any favours here in earning my good opinion. I guess I shouldn't be surprised because he's pretty consistent at making his feelings about people known, often by using magic on them, but to sit there and just conjure a snake when he knows that she hates them - without any form of provocation? It seemed so cruel and uncalled for and I'm very intrigued to see the development of his character arc!
And then the confrontation when she ran out of class! At first I was thinking that maybe he'd go to apologise, but that was clearly expecting too much of him. That scene was so dramatic and exciting to read, and the hatred and tension just poured through it so effectively. I can understand in a way why Sirius might have that view of Cassie, since she's not doing anything obvious to fight against the expectations her family have for her - even if she's planning to leave and get away from it all as soon as she's able - and he's very much the sort of person who makes his decision and sticks to it, very visibly. But even so, it seemed so unfair that he'd take that out on her without actually taking the time to understand the position she's in. I'm so intrigued to see where you're going to go from here!
Hello! Here for March's RvG again!
I spy a Lily catching feelings for one James Potter, and not really bothering to fight them at all here. And Cassie can see it too - I really like the way that you've managed to include that growing attraction between the two of them but still managed to flesh out all the chapters so far, so they're very real and interesting.
So Cassie can see Thestrals? I guess that I shouldn't actually be that surprised that she's able to, but I'm intrigued about whose death she witnessed which has enabled her to see them. Whether it was a family member or a friend passing away "naturally", or whether it's somehow related to Death Eater activity and the pureblood agenda. If the latter's the case, then the fact that she just really wants to get away from everything would be even more understandable.
The meeting with the other Marauders felt like it was written really naturally, too, not at all forced. I'm so curious about Cassie's relationship and history with Sirius after this chapter, since - apart from Peter - she's clearly on good terms with his friends and the rest of her housemates. She's playing Quidditch with James and good friends with Remus, so there's got to be something which has made them so bitter and biting towards each other. That exchange about Pyra was fun to read, as arrogant as Sirius came across in it - I'm intrigued to see if he's that arrogant generally or if she's bringing out the worst side in him at the moment. And I'm kind of looking forward to seeing Cassie eating her words about him, too :P
The stand-off with Snape and Sirius was so tense to read! I can definitely picture Remus as the peacemaker, trying to divert any incidents - what he said to Sirius certainly worked, but the fact that Cassie didn't know what he meant by it gave us a clear indication of how much she actually knows about their secrets at this point.
Cassie's desire to be away from Hogwarts and the British wizarding world more generally was really convincing throughout this chapter - you haven't dwelt a lot on the point at once, but it's woven in very cleverly and emphasised again at the end, and I really enjoyed that. I can't blame her for wanting to get away - I wonder if that's part of what's causing the tension with Sirius?
Hello! Here for March's RvG.
Cassie's reaction to arriving in a Muggle house for the first time made me laugh - but I think it also did a really good job of showing the sort of sheltered, restricted life that she's lived until this point, and the way that the exposure she's had to the Muggle world is still only through her friends from Hogwarts, even if they're friends her family would much rather she didn't make. The distinction between the sort of toys that Cassie had grown up with and the descriptions of all the well-loved objects in Lily's room was a really effective contrast, too.
The way that Lily brought Mary into the conversation was so intriguing! I think I probably assumed that because Cassie was best friends with Lily and in Gryffindor with Mary, she'd be more sympathetic or at least care a little bit more about the fact that she's missing/dead. She seems quite apathetic about it, though, and I think that kind of shows how normal these sorts of attacks have become, and the fact that Cassie's from a family who's quite happy for them to take place has probably affected the way that she reacts.
Then the conversation with Eddie just emphasised that - the fact that these attacks are commonplace, and Cassie doesn't care that much about Mary - she seems more concerned with whether or not Eddie was involved. There's something almost Slytherin about the way that she wants to protect her friends but doesn't care that much about what happens to others (which ties in with the list, I guess - that's a really intriguing idea), so I'm looking forward to seeing the way that her character grows and changes through this story and whether that might be one aspect she comes to view differently.
And there we have the first introduction to Sirius! I noticed this was tagged as a Sirius/OC story and I'm so intrigued to see how you're going to write a relationship growing between these two, because that meeting was... cold, at best. He obviously doesn't like her at all here and I'm intrigued what their history is, and whether it's just a family thing or if there's something more behind it.
Hi Deni! Here to sprinkle some penpal love and also for March's RvG.
This was such an intriguing start to the story! Your summary alone has me interested in the story (as if I hadn't heard brilliant things about it from absolutely everyone who's read it) but this was a great first chapter - you've left me with so many questions here and I really want to read on straight away just to find out what happens, and learn more about Cassie.
The opening of the chapter was so effective - I loved the description and imagery that you used, particularly the antique jewellery dripping from fingers - the word choices here were so evocative and you really painted the image of wealth and distinction very clearly with just the opening few lines. And with that description, there was already the undercurrent of frustration and boredom that Cassie's feeling - it really helped to set the tone for the whole chapter.
Cassie is so intriguing so far! I like the way that you've placed her in reference to a lot of other canon characters whose names we know so that we've already got an idea of where she fits into the story, especially through her conversation with Regulus. But despite the fact that our introduction to her is set against this backdrop of wealth and pureblood society, it's really clear that she's different and doesn't belong to all of that, and doesn't feel comfortable with it. Even the fact that she's in Gryffindor marks her out as different; I'm curious about how well she's toeing the line between her house and her family, because there doesn't seem to be the same disappointment - to the point of being disowned - from her parents as with Sirius.
The conversation with Regulus was really interesting, and I liked the way that you used it to give us a lot more information about Cassie without just writing it all out. It really helped to shape the events that have been going on, and I felt sorry for Regulus. The parents and families really are grooming their children to grow up and fight for a cause before most of them have even had a chance to work out what they believe in.
And Lily's her best friend! I can't imagine her mother would be happy with that, nor the fact that she's escaped home to go and stay with her. But I'm looking forward to the next chapter to see more of their friendship.
Hi! I'm here with your requested review! :)
Yesss, I absolutely LOVE Marauder-era fics, so this is toally my speed!
I think this is off to a very interesting start. You set the tone exceptionally well; it's dark, yet hopeful, and I think you struck a good balance between the two. Also, I love that you didn't give too much away just yet. We get glimpses of what Cassie's family is like, as well as what her relationship with them is, but I get the sense we've barely scratched the surface there.
I found a lot of dark humor in regards to Cassie being asked if she's planning on "joining up" once she's able to. It reminded me a lot of how today's teens are constantly getting asked what their college plans are lol. Obviously, what she's being asked is so much darker, since she's being asked if she's going to join what's essentially a terror group. But, I did find it amusing that you somewhat implented that shared experience most teens have to endure, but made a magical, pureblood version of it.
I love your depiction of how pureblood families behave when they're together. They're basically acting like oldschool royalty. Talking about their wealth and superiority, searching for suitable marriage partners, doing things "for the good of the family"... it's so eerie, but you handled it well, and Cassie's discomfort and disgust regarding it all was so believable.
You commented in your request about characterization. Considering this is only the first chapter, I think you've given Cassie an engaging personality thus far. I'm looking forward to seeing her fleshed out a bit more, and perhaps getting more insight as to why she's decided to distance herself from her family. (Is it simply because of their pureblood mania, or is there more to it?) I also really liked your depiction of Regulus. There's an innocent vulnerability to him, almost as if he can still be "saved" from making a poor decision. Like, he seems eager to follow his family's footsteps, but doesn't fully understand what he's getting himself into, you know? He kind of reminded me of a more pleasant version of Draco.
All in all, you've set up an interesting premise here. Well done! Thanks for stopping by my request thread! :)
no greeting or anything, just wow.
When you said this was a huge chapter for the story but I never imagined what you had in store for us! I thought that Cassie would be running away from her feelings in this chapter which she was but it was so much more than that. I think you've done an amazing done at bringing this really emotional chapter to life.
I was expecting Cassie to bolt after the kiss like straight away but it's kinda nice that she didn't even though she kept saying it was a mistake. she needs to get in touch with her feelings more. she has too much going on in her head right now as you've shown that confusion perfectly. It's kinda scatty element out of her so well like it does across like believable as someone's inner thoughts. I suppose you know Cassie so well by now that her thoughts in way mix with your own. (I'm kinda hoping that you haven't witnessed any killings/caught the interest of a mass murderer though!) but it's kinda vibe that only get real human emotions. you've nailed that perfectly within your writing.
It is odd to get back to some normality within the story as the story rolls on with James' Quidditch practice and ignoring Sirius. COME ON CASSIE, GET YOUR SH!T TOGETHER. (are we allowed to say that in reviews? not sure. I'm so sorry if we aren't, I COVERED IT UP, it's cool hopefully?). The girl in the middle of the stories, it's like what Cassie wishes she could do that she could make it so simple and go to Dumbledore to seek protection but Cassie is already in too deep and I think that Cassie thinks she doesn't deserve redemption which is why she feels so stuck.
SIRIUS. oh my gosh. It's kinda obvious how much that he cares about her like he is willing to go to War for her. That's pretty amazing but foolish but I love that about Sirius.
The hurricane in her head seemed to fade away as she melted into the feeling of his body against hers. I really like this line because I feel like its perfectly captured Sirius' effect on her like he calms her down/balances her out yet there is something so passionate about them being together. It's the perfect mix.
Where does she go from here? her past with Mary with Voldemort. I don't know where you're going but I'm screaming. Screaming because I know Cassie can be the 'better' person, because I hate Eddie, because I know Sirius is better for her. She is strong, she needs to believe it. I love the twists in this story and I think it's really wonderful that Cassie's journey is so rocky that her attraction to Sirius doesn't suddenly make her a better person, it's so much more than that. It's focused more on Cassie's journey than just purely romance which makes this story so different and compelling.
- Abbi xo
DENI WHAT?? WHY
I was properly warned about this and I still feel unprepared. Honestly, I was ALL EXCITED from the end of last chapter and then EVEN MORE SO from the beginning of this chapter! I really thought something happened between then, when she woke up with him, but NOOOO, she was just drunk and they only kissed once AND SHE'S SAYING THAT IT SHOULDN'T HAVE HAPPENED! STOP PUSHING SIRIUS AWAY CASSIE!!
I have a lot of thoughts about this middle section because on one hand, like good for Cassie for telling this girl to get out and go to Dumbledore and be proactive about it. But on the other hand, Cassie's whole actions this chapter "the something buzzing in her head" the whole time are a lot...less decisive than this action. How she acts in the first part with Sirius, how the acts the second time with Sirius, are both so much less firm and I DONT LIKE THAT! And not just because I want her and Sirius to live happily ever after despite your great and terrible pun from earlier! She just doesn't seem like herself right now and I'm worried for her!
THIS FIGHT!! There was so much tension between Cassie's gryffie friends and her (old???) slytherin crew that is was bound to break at some point and IT BROKE. It's so Sirius to be figthing and not like actually dueling like the wizard he is. Such a hothead.
Cassie should NOT have kissed him at the end here after her decision at the beginning!! GAHH on that thought I am SO TORN because you know I just want them together. That was such a ROUGH MOMENT! HE KNOWS ABOUT MARY NOW AND IT WAS SO HORRIBLE! You could just feel the betrayal he felt and it was SO SAD! GOOD BYE CASSIE I CANNOT DENI!
And then honestly, that fact that Eddie, Eddie, of all people is the one who she calls for in the tower to help her is SO MUCH WORSE. He didn't expect her to be any better than a Yaxley should be was THE MOST HEARTBREAKING LINE! Like Eddie thinks that she's just meant to be this one thing and thats all she can ever be but Sirius knows she can be more and we know she can be more SO SHE HAS TO BE BETTER DENI, LET HER BE BETTER THAN THIS!!
Anyway, great job as usual, no apologies for all the shouting! Can't wait for the next one!!
Alright, monster. I have some words for you.
(I feel like you should know that it’s only as I was copy and pasting this review onto the site that I discovered that first line had a type and accidentally said ‘I have some swords for you.’ Also, this is for February RvG.)
First of all, this beginning was a tease, because I was totally expecting that something more happened between Cassie and Sirius than just that kiss, and it wasn’t just that she was super drunk and he brought her up to bed. But alas, it was just the one kiss, and now Cassie’s trying to close herself off to him instead of letting herself be happy with him, dammit. And it makes sense that she’d close herself off in a way, but it doesn’t make it any easier to watch.
Honestly, I’m torn between wanting to give Cassie a hug and wanting to slap her. It feels like she’s reverting back to her old ways a bit in this chapter - it feels less and less like she’s taking a side, and more and more like she’s moving back into that neutral territory again (which is a *terrible* idea, really, because refusing to pick a side means no one’s going to be on her side eventually). But also, damn - being told that you’ve been called “the next Bellatrix Black” is….. well, that’s really something. But this particular line - “I've been wondering ever since then if I made the right decision, and I'm still not sure that I did.” - was incredibly damning, and it kind of hinted at what was going to happen towards the end of the chapter, because it seems like she’s starting to doubt her decision, which can never go well for her. But at least she’s helping Lucile get out of things, and hopefully ensuring that the younger girl doesn’t have to witness the same horrific things that Cassie has had to witness.
GAH, and then this scene between Cassie and Sirius. First of all, it’s shitty that she’d gone straight to ignoring him after the kiss, but she’s also right that he doesn’t have all that much room to judge her for something like that. It’s nice, in a way, that he was defending her honour, but also probably an overreaction and playing right into what Mulciber expected him to do.
AND THEN THAT KISS. AND WHAT HAPPENED AFTER THE KISS. So, you told me this revelation was coming and I was pretty much expecting it at this point, but I had almost envisioned it happening as a big scene in front of everyone - but somehow, the fact that this big revelation happened when it was just the two of them (AND RIGHT AFTER THEY KISSED) was somehow so much worse?? Like, Sirius’ pain and feeling of betrayal is SO palpable in this quiet moment between the two of them, and I just……… monster.
And then this ending. Get the hell out of here Eddie, no one wants you here.
(Okay, well, Cassie wants him here, but Cassie is WRONG and needs to realise that pronto.)
“He wouldn't ask her why or tell her to be better than she was.” THIS is the difference between Eddie and Sirius, and all the proof necessary that Cassie’s definitely making the wrong decision right now. Because while she may be convinced that she needs someone who doesn’t expect her to be anything better, she NEEDS someone like Sirius who challenges her and calls her out on her hypocrisy and pushes her to break out of the mold of who she’s expected to be because of her family name. Now, if only she could finally see that for herself…..
Brilliant chapter, as always, although I can only hope you’ll fix things for Cassie eventually. (Although, as we’ve established, you’ll completely ruin them again by the end…. but like, at least give us a little bit of happiness in the middle?? Maybe??)
Hello! Saw you were a FROG nominee so here I am!
Alright so, I’m immediately interested about what’s going on right now. The description of the opulent wealth makes me curious about whether it’s a ball, or perhaps a meeting of the Purebloods of some sort.
Oof, I already I’m getting this sort of distant feeling between from Leila and Cassie. It’s just the tone in which Cassie describes Leila—it seems to me that she’s some kind of jealous or maybe like distasteful of her. You continue on to say that Cassie would never see Dromeda again, so that makes me wonder if the two were close or something?
Is this a romance? I forgot to read the tags but I forget if this was a romance. Either way, Regulus and Cassie seem to have a comfortable friendship, if they each go to each other at family functions to bitch about something or another.
God, the thought of anyone being in love with Voldemort leaves me terrified—who would want to follow someone who has done as many cruel things as he did?
So, I may have completely miscalculated what Regulus was like. However, it would make sense that he would grow up with the beliefs he was taught. Maybe he grew away from them.
Regulus’ innocence makes me a bit sad because of how easy he buys into the Death Eater bullshit. At the very least, Cassie seems to a bit of common sense. Her feelings of not wanting to go to war is completely justified. (As well as those who want to stick around—neither are incorrect per se.)
I genuinely cannot tell if Tatiana Yaxley cares for her children or not—she seems fond of Leila, yet she doesn’t seem completely hostile towards Cassie, given the fact that she lets Cassie leave as she had promised her.
Cassie’s sneaking out! From her choice in clothing, she’s probably definitely on the opposite side of the war from her family.
The moment you said ‘COkeworth’ I kind of knew something was up, because that’s where Lily Evans live isn’t it?
Yes! I love being right.
I wonder if Cassie is escaping her home for the rest of the summer or for the rest of her life? Wouldn’t she be caught easily though? Unless her family doesn’t really care enough to look for her—they’d never think to look in a muggle neighborhood. But if they do, isn’t that like putting Lily directly in danger?
I have many questions.
Great chapter! x
I love the dynamics here between all the characters! I am envious of your ability to set things up so well right off the bat. I can already see where allegiances have formed and how tension is rising, which fits in nicely with the idea that this is war time and everyone is on their toes. It also feels so very teenager-y, if that makes sense—the web of friendships and enemies and crushes, and everyone plays a part.
I can see why this story is a finalist. Very much deserved! Best of luck to you, my dear.
I’m back with more random thoughts!
It’s so interesting how they have a list for immunity. I love little details like that. It makes sense that Snape would have already put Lily on there. I also think it’s interesting how James seems to be on good terms with Cassie (both on the Quidditch team, it seems?) yet Sirius seems to dislike her. It must have to do with her family, though I feel like they would be very close if they could only talk. They are very similar.
I’m going to read one more chapter before I move on. I’m really getting into this story! After the FROGS, I’ll definitely come back to read more. :)
Hello! As I’m making my way through the FROGS Reading List, I’ve made it a goal to drop off some reviews. They probably won’t be very lengthy as there are a lot of stories to read, but I know how important it is for authors to get some feedback from readers, so here goes. :)
I think this is a fantastic set-up. You handle a lot of characters very well. The scene felt full and dynamic, and you led me so capably through it. Cassie’s world feels well fleshed out and I especially liked her interaction with Regulus, how he is so young here and so eager to please. Knowing what he will become makes this all the more exciting. And the ending was a fun twist! Clearly Cassie is not everything she is meant to be as a pure blood heiress.
On to the next chapter!