hey juls! i'm here for EvS, team emerald :D
i really liked this little insight into our favourite (?) caretaker's early life. the background you've written him makes absolute sense in how we see him in the books - a pureblooded squib with a death eater father who doesn't love him (and a mother who doesn't seem to have much of a say in anything...) would grow up to resent the wizards and witches, especially the students who so freely do their magic around hogwarts, do it for jokes and stuff when he can't do anything. it seems even a tiny bit cruel of dumbledore to invite him to be a hogwarts caretaker, knowing filch's history but...i think he wanted to protect him? at least that's what i got from your story and it goes well with the character of dumbledore from the books.
i also loved the fact that filch was so friendly with animals and in the end that mrs norris stayed his constant - i mmean, you know i'm a crazy cat lady, so a cat who takes care of her boy, comforting him when he's sad, allowing him to cry into her fur...that's just nice and she deserves to live on through his other cats after her death.
This is Vicki leaving a review for the EvS Review tag.
This is Emily from the forums, coming to review for you to fill your request from the Staff Review Thread!
First off, let me say that I am a very proud crazy cat lady, and I basically adore stories that feature Mrs. Norris, Crookshanks, etc. So I was so excited to see this in the thread and I'm so happy to have a chance to let you know what I think!
This story was so very sweet! I absolutely love the idea of Filch having had a cat named Mrs. Norris as a companion when he was a child, then naming his subsequent companions in her honor. That's such a lovely thing to add here.
Your characterization of Argus and his father fit your use of the song for this perfectly. I haven't read a songfic in a long time, but now I remember how well done they can be! You really embraced the emotions in Harry Chapin's song and flowed them through Argus's story.
I also thought you did a great job showing the relationship between Mrs. Figg and Argus. I've never seen it addressed in fics before, but there must be some sort of Squib support network or something to help them adjust to life either as non-magical people in the magical world, or as non-magical people who KNOW of magic in the Muggle world. So I think that the compassion you showed from Arabella to Argus was really nice. (Cat people gotta stick together, amiright? ;) )
Over all, I think you did a great job here. This was a really sweet story and you were able to give depth to a character that's often overlooked.
So glad you enjoyed this, fellow Crazy Cat lady. Thanks for the review!
Hi, Juls! Here for our swap! :)
Congratulations, you've managed to make me feel sorry for Filtch...
The first part, when he was just a child, so naive and innocent... I knew (or suspected) what was to come and already my heart was cracking for him... I think you wrote that first scene so lovely, I could imagine the small child going on adventure with his loyal cat... :P It was just so cute, even if you hinted how Argus wasn't the most easygoing of people, even back then.
The second section, when he was waiting for his Hogwarts' letter... the cruelty of his father who hardly acknoledged him anymore... but what would you expect from a Pureblood maniac? The line about Argus needing Mrs Norris because he could cry into her fur... oh, my Merlin! So sad... but such a great image, too!
And then Dumbledore finding him and taking him to Hogwarts. It's still not the best setting possible, but at least he's getting a chance to a decent life? I mean, it's always better than living in the street hoping on the generosity of passers-by? I love that he connected with Mrs Figg. I'd never thought about their common love for cats, such a sweet detail to include. It kind of killed me how you also included the scene of his father's arrest... it's just so sad... :(
I really, really loved the lyrics you included, they were very fitting. I don't know the song they are taken from, but I really love how they worked within the story.
Once again, your style was so lovely. This was such a nice piece and I love that you made me feel for such a disliked character. Thank you so much for the swap, dear! :)
Lots of love,
Thanks for coming by - and for your review. There's almost nothing written about Filch's youth anywhere. JKR never really fleshed him out, and that makes me a sad panda. Filch is my friend Courtney's favorite character, and foor our fic exchange, he was one of the characters listed she wanted one about. I'm pleased that you think I did him justice, and that in some way you could feel sorry for him.
Being a Squib gave him a unique position in life. Not very enviable one. He was lost in the cracks, neither magical or muggle. He was an outcast, and probably bitter. Why he was the way he was. I did read that he was devoted to Dumbledore and to the other professors. It was just the kids - including the Slytherin ones - he didn't like.
Thanks, once again.