Hey Noelle! I'm here for our swap, and as always, excited to return to Miranda and Severus's story! <3
NOELLE. This chapter is so freaking cute omg. I feel like it's the perfect follow-up to the last chapter--even though they didn't exactly part on the fondest terms, I feel like this chapter really takes the tender moments we saw in the previous chapter and amps them up.
I love tender and sort of pining Severus. It's definitely a rough, reluctant sort of tenderness (even though that's a total oxymoron haha)--and yet, it's so clear that he can't resist. I like that you played up his intelligence and his abilities as a caretaker in this chapter, and how perceptive he is of people's needs--without taking away his snark though.
And honestly the snarkiness between them? Makes them so good. I love their banter so much. It makes me ship them even harder. I've been slowly and slowly starting to ship them over the course of the fic, but I feel like this chapter is something of a turning point.
I feel like it's also something of a turning point in everything we learned about Miranda. I mean, all of it was things that was easily inferred--I wondered about her family, and them also being bounty hunters makes perfect sense (though it does make me question whether Miranda feels like she has something to prove as a result? I mean she's definitely messed up in some way because of her family. What kind of family doesn't fuck you up a little?) And her wanderlust is no surprise. But I'm really struck by her willingness to share that, that honesty. It's refreshing, and I hope it'll drive Severus to be more honest and open with Miranda.
I loved the little romantic moments in this fic. Reading poems from Miranda's book (one of THE most romantic things you can do with someone, imo), walking along the river. Severus just taking care of her. It was sort of domestic in a sense? I could definitely sense their relationship shifting too. Each touch felt like it was shifting from purely sexual to more affectionate/emotional. And Severus, who is not one to be distracted by anything, is clearly distracted by her--which I think sets up for more interesting growth in future chapters.
After this chapter, I feel like I have more emotional stakes in their relationship. I think it takes time to build genuine investment in a romantic relationship, but you've totally nailed it. And I also feel tense knowing about all the other storylines that might converge and create complications for our reluctant lovebirds :|
This was a fantastic chapter, as per the usual! And I'm really looking forward to reading more. Thank you for sharing and for swapping with me!
P.S. I really like the title of this chapter :P
Whaaat I was hoping for some more flirty interactions, and maybe some more kissing. Like, I’m always a huge sucker for domestic scenes, even after one-night stands that aren’t supposed to repeat, so after the breakfast scene, I was very hopeful. Like, when he kissed her neck while she was cooking?? It made me anticipate things.
The fight escalated really quickly, though, so we didn’t get more happy times haha. It seems like Snape’s always going to let his double life get the better of him, and make him distrust a perfectly respectable woman. And even if he began to distrust her, was it necessary to be so mean?? I can understand her harshness, considering she’s just retaliating to horrible things that he’s saying, but why did he start off saying: “You’ve been a charming diversion, but I’m afraid I simply do not have time for any more such foolishness.” IT’S SO MEAN. SNAPE WHY ARE YOU SO MEAN.
It made me a little sad, actually, when she didn’t realize what he was saying at first, and so she was like, “You don’t have to leave. I can do this later.” It was kind of sweet. If only she knew he didn’t deserve it hmph.
“I sincerely hope that your next mark separates your obscene head from your indecent body.” WHAT. SNAPE. WHAT. HOW ARE YOU ANY MORE DECENT THAN SHE IS, YOU MEAN-SPIRITED MAN??
I can’t believe she started feeling remorseful after that omg. If anything, Snape should be the one feeling remorseful, for drawing the wrong conclusions after overhearing her conversation with her father/hearing her muse about her work, and for being SO MEAN.
Sorry I said “mean” too many times in this review. :P I feel so bad for Miranda though!
Ooooh, what do Lucius Malfoy and Cornelius Fudge want with her?? What sort of Voldemort-related monster/person do they wish her to hunt? (Obviously I’m only making assumptions, but…why would Lucius Malfoy be involved if it wasn’t to further the cause with Voldemort?) I also think her complete and utter disdain for Lucius is completely relatable, and I hope nothing bad happens from here.
The fact that she managed to find Number Twelve Grimmauld Place is really astonishing. Also, she has an interesting perception of what Snape is like, and the fact that she’s not terribly appreciative of his personality (she called him an ass, at least, haha) but is very interested to see what he’s like in bed… It’s very intriguing. Like I don’t think I’ve ever seen this take on Snape before. And I think it’s possible that she’s right, that he is definitely self-aware enough to make someone else feel good, but also he did state in like chapter two his exploits with other women, and he didn’t seem to care about their well-being that much, so. Maybe it’s different when he thinks they’re pretty, idk.
His suspicion that she could’ve been waiting for him is really amusing, and very in line with his character, haha. Also, you know, I’ve seen some girls with the prettiest lips in the world, and I’m getting the sense that Miranda Rose is one of them, from the way Snape can’t help but kiss her!
“It wasn’t red hair, but it would do.” / “She wasn’t Lily, but she would do.” WHAT THIS IS NOT GOOD, SNAPE. LIKE. LILY IS DEAD. STOP DREAMING ABOUT SEX WITH HER.
Man I really hope he stops thinking about Lily soon. At least Miranda doesn’t seem to be interested in much more than sex at the moment.
Your opening description of The Queen Mab was so beautiful! I particularly loved the description of the “Art Nouveau maidens” winking, “whispering and giggling to each other.” That was such a lovely detail, and really added to the atmosphere of the place! (I also love the name of the pub, though I’m not sure if it’s a reference to anything that I’m missing haha.)
Also, wow, waiting for forty-five minutes is honestly such dedication, especially with like two-thirds of that time being after the designated meeting time. I think, especially for someone I’d just met, I would bail after ten minutes, especially if they didn’t contact me in some way haha. (I wonder, there has to be a more efficient way of wizarding communication than like owling and using Patronuses, right? Who knows.)
Something that I’ve noticed is that you use a lot of similar words to describe Miranda, which makes her seem a little flat. For instance, you use some form of “laughed” a decent amount, as well as “impish”, “playful”, “mirth”, and other words along those lines. I think a better way of demonstrating that she has these qualities is simply by making her dialogue/voice sound more teasing/joking, or by pointing to her facial features as opposed to using plain adjectives/adverbs (though be careful of repeating this too many times as well).
It was really fun seeing their date, and the aftermath! Kisses are always very fun to read, and it’s really interesting reading Snape with a character we’ve never seen before! It’s unfortunate that his Dark Mark pulled him away, though. I wish he would stop thinking about Lily! It’s been like at least a decade since she died, and here’s someone who’s obviously interested (and he’s clearly into her, too). He should work on getting over Lily (I mean, he should’ve a long time ago, haha, but still).
Fun chapter! :)
Hi Noelle! Here with your requested review; it’s always a pleasure to come back to this story <3
I loved this chapter! I feel like in many ways, it’s acting as set up to pull more storylines closer and closer together—and it makes me really excited for the following chapters. One storyline that was clearly introduced here was Miranda’s past and background; I loved seeing a glimpse into her world through her room, and meeting her father. I can tell that she’s extremely close to her family, and I’m looking forward to learning more about them. And the other storyline: I’m really eager for Miranda to finally connect the dots about the cause of the dark magic; she isn’t an idiot after all, and I feel like she’s going to figure it out sooner rather than later, which is basically a collision waiting to happen.
I think the storyline that was most compelling to me in this chapter was Severus and Miranda’s relationship. I really liked the touch of realism showing that sexual chemistry doesn’t actually translate to liking each other as people. The same differences that seem to drive them would also, rationally drive them apart—and i think you’ve perfectly and realistically portrayed a hate-to-love relationship—especially in the subtle notes of appreciation and empathy that ultimately leads to love—Severus making the bed, Miranda feeling guilty...I feel like these are the kinds of feelings that can be built up!
And even when they’re fighting, they’re actually really cute :P I ship them a lot, which is surprising given how early we are in their story.
I’m really excited to read more! Thanks for requesting a review!
I read this before breakfast initially, so the food sounded so, so delicious. I always feel so envious of characters in stories when they’re given scrumptious-sounding free food. I mean, even though there wasn’t much detail regarding the food, I still suddenly became ravenous just reading the words “steak, potatoes, bread, and cheese” and seeing Snape’s reaction to it. Imagine if you had gone into more detail! I would have been dead.
Um so one detail that really struck me was that Snape took advantage of women??? Which is really, really terrible? Like, he said they were “willing,” but can women really be willing when they’re “too drunk and enchanted to participate”? This part was a little disturbing to read about, how Snape stopped “shagging” these women not because he realized they were drunk/enchanted and therefore incapable of consent, but because there was no use in doing so. And also because he didn’t really want them, anyway, since he was lusting after Lily.
Anyway, that paragraph made me feel a little uncertain about Snape, haha, like the books always painted him as a more morally ambiguous character, but like, his borderline rapes push him into more of the morally unambiguously bad type, you know?
So Miranda Rose seems like someone who’s generally lighthearted and not serious. Which should be interesting, reading more about her interactions with the extremely grumpy Snape! Though I hope we eventually get a chapter in her point of view, because she can’t be so playful all the time haha.
Also he already got a date with her! Curious to see how it goes :P
Hey, Noelle! Finally here for your review! :)
It’s been eons since I’ve read anything Snape, but (from my very limited memory) it was like you pulled Snape straight from the books! His characterization felt exactly right, and was really excellent—his grumpiness, sullenness, and pessimism felt exactly on point. The opening paragraph about him hating everything was very amusing, because of course Snape would hate everything, haha. I also liked the setup of the setting, regarding both time and place, and how it was clear that this takes place during the height of the struggle between Voldemort and Dumbledore
And your OC! What a striking and memorable first impression, haha, appearing for less than a moment before kissing him. I wonder exactly what the kiss was for? I figure it was for luring in the vampire for some way, but how? Was it to make the vampire think that the two magical humans were occupied and unaware, and therefore vulnerable for attack? Would she have been unable to do it without the kiss?
The fact that Snape was so affected by his meeting with her was really, really funny. By “meeting” I mean “kisses” lmao. It seemed like she quite enjoyed it, too, so I suppose it was lucky for both of them that they weren’t immediately disgusted with one another upon further conversation. From this first chapter, I can tell your OC is playful, and vaguely flirty, and I hope to see more of her soon!
I also really, really love it when fanfictions go really into detail about a very specific part of the Harry Potter world—like about inventing new potions, or, like you did, bounty hunting. I loved watching your OC deal with the vampire ash, and talk about how she needed to clean Severus up otherwise the vampire would just regenerate! It was really fascinating. I hope there’ll be more parts of the story detailing the specifics of her job soon!
Fun first chapter :)
Hey Noelle! Here for more of our swap!!! :D And RvG!
Aha! Dumbledore is back. My last review had me pondering about him a little bit, and now he's here in the flesh--and I'm still uneasy about him and his ulterior motives. It's great that Dumbledore is having Miranda go to Romania as a way to get Malfoy off her back, but here he goes with another cause again. Typical Dumbledore. Of course, this means that we'll get to see more of the Weasleys (you have a knack for writing them, I must say), and we'll be seeing the most underwritten of the clan: Charlie!
And just when I thought that I would have to wait until the next chapter or so to get some Weasley action in there, you seamlessly insert Fred and George into the mix! Of course they're up to their Weasley Wizard Wheezes shenanigans... and Snape is nearby! (At least it wasn't Umbridge because then they all would have been screwed, lol.) And then Snape and Miranda get to restart their banter, though it still doesn't end on the best of terms.
That exchange with Lucius!!! Ugh, he is THE WORST. How dare he threaten Miranda like that, ugh!!!! I'm so glad that Aaron shows up. I'm liking this guy more and more... and I like all the American quips you have in here from the password to Ben Franklin's virtues (I KNEW I recognized them, I just couldn't place them!) I love the tension you brew between the US and the UK relationships in just the conversation between Aaron and Miranda... and how you tie in Grindelwald's past. I enjoy catching the little details here and there.
I'll try to get another chapter or two in this week. Great job in this chapter, and I look forward to more! :)
Hey Noelle! Here for our continued swap! :)
I really like the opening scene. So much happened at the end of last chapter that it was nice to get Miranda's perspective after she's had some time to mull things over. I'm glad that she recognizes how dangerous Lucius Malfoy is--and I laughed out loud about MACUSA's competency. I know that this is the first story set of three... but I'm hoping to see Miranda up against her own magical government. I'm so enjoying how she's fitting into the OotP world, and I'm curious to see how you'd write the American wizarding world.
Also, I'm curious to know how much Dumbledore is playing both Snape and Miranda here... sure, Snape left suddenly in a fit (he's done that before, hopefully Miranda can start detecting that pattern and decide if she's willing to deal with that behavior--I'm thinking that she would since she seems to miss him), but I wonder how much Dumbledore is banking on them remaining on good terms with each other? And how much he's counting on Miranda toying with Malfoy in the way that she has with tracking the dogs? Hmmm...
(Nice graphic in the middle of the chapter! :D)
AHHHH! Miranda will be unable to stay away from Malfoy Manor, oh no!!! And what's Aaron doing, doing to this pureblood shindig? Surely MACUSA would be putting their efforts into something... I don't know... more inclusive?? And I do adore Aaron and Rachel as a couple. And I loved how they celebrated Thanksgiving together!!!
And then we finish with Snape's angst. I like how you have both Miranda and Snape's musings together into one chapter (and it's a great way to show how time has passed, especially with that lovely middle Thanksgiving scene). I like how he's experimenting with potions... and then he has a flashback to Lily. I think you have Snape spot on as he fantasizes about James and Harry dying and Lily living. To me, that is rather awful of him to do because Harry is right there and he's imagining a death of a child who's very much alive, but then I like how his vision warps into meeting Miranda. It shows that finally after all this time, he's emotionally moving on from Lily, which is a very healthy thing for him to do. Obviously I am a very biased Lily/James shipper, but I do enjoy seeing Snape move on to someone else, who I think is good for him (ahem, Miranda)... so when are they getting back together? Something tells me that this pureblood shindig will recollide their worlds... ;)
Looking forward to what comes next!
I'm all caught up!!! :O
And yay! I'd missed Severus last chapter! (I can't believe I've actually just said that...) It was nice to see Miranda back to England for a few days, interacting with Arthur, and Aaron... and Severus, of course. I loved how easily she could make Severus relax when he was so furious. She's come to actually understand him now, hasn't she? I would've thought she would have mentioned the potion she needs him to brew for her mission... anyway, it's nice that Severus is considering visiting her during the holidays, despite all the obvious complications...
So, Vasile is supporting Miranda (or rather, he doesn't want to ally with Voldemort). That's good to know. I'm glad Miranda has an ally, even if one who doesn't want to show that he is. Looks like she needs the guidance, too, since some of the rules weren't expressed too explicitly...
The scene with Arthur and Aaron was really lovely, it's so nice to get some sense of normalcy from time to time, since we don't get much of it in this story (which is not a complain, on the contrary I love the quick pacing, but it's nice to have some small parenthesis of the just friends catching up sort)
Oh, my... Severus' fury after the Pensieve incident... I can see why he would be so angry, but at the same time... wouldn't it have been much easier for everyone if Severus had just been honest about his feelings since the very beginning? Instead of being so focused on hating Harry just because he reminded him of a bad time of his life? I mean, he wouldn't have been Severus if he had, but it makes me sad because if he'd been slightly more opened he would have had a much happier life himself... I'm glad Miranda's not going to give up on him, at least.
So, will Severus go to Romania? Will Miranda succeed in her mission? Will the Dragneas come around again? And what about Malfoy's threats? There are so many loose threads and I can't wait for everything to come over together. You've really waved such a complex and fascinating story.
I will be eagerly waiting for the next update! (Make sure to stop by my thread when you post one).
Thank you so much for making me discover this great story of yours!
Lots of love,
Hi, Noelle, dear! Here for your request! :)
A lot of interesting things are happening here... and, wait a moment... Miranda is a mother?! Sorry, what?! I'm so curious about this new piece of background information...
How sad that she's going to compete with the people who've been hosting her, and to discover that they are Voldemort's supporters... I mean, I guess I can see the reasoning, when you've been oppressed you end up seeking revenge, but... surely they can see that Voldemort can't be the answer? It's especially sad in a community that is so open, where the wizarding and muggle worlds seem to cohexist so peacefully... btw, I loved the worldbuilding here. You are always so detailed and so attentive at the different cultures you include in your story, I'm always so impressed.
The two stories were interesting (if a bit creepy, especially the first one...) and now I wonder if the whole friends/enemies and betrayal aspects of those were somehow foreshadowing of what Miranda's relationship with the Dragneas will turn out to be now. I'm also very curious about how this challenge will work out in the end...
The meeting with Charlie was so nice (alwas lovely to meet more Weasleys :P) I loved the dragons! So cute! And the feeling of safety in the Sanctuary... absolutely delightful! <3
Guess I'll move on to the next chapter now (sorry if I'm cutting this a bit short...) See you in a little bit!
Lots of love and snowball hug,
Hey Noelle! Here for part 2 of our swap and RvG!
What a chapter! Wow! You write so many clever plot devices into this chapter, I'm in awe, especially because they're so effective.
First, Miranda's inner monologue at the beginning. Last chapter, we were forced into her mind, seeing her vulnerable and reliving some of her most painful memories. Now we get to see a Miranda who is picking herself up and is contemplating the very nature of her relationship with Snape: the risks, how they treat each other, everything.
Little sidenote: I love how you describe Miranda getting ready. Not only does it remind me of FB where the Goldstein sisters jazz themselves up for the speakeasy, I also imagine this is how the wizarding world glams up. After all, we have magic!
At the bar, I felt like I were truly watching a spy film. With Miranda's friendliness with the people there, the dancing, the cocktails, the drama, you wove in a lot in this public appearance made by our two lovers in question. What I admire most about this part of the story is how you cover your bases with the risks of Miranda being involved with Snape. What would happen if Voldemort captured her. How Miranda sees him being in either camp and where his loyalties lie. ANd then you bring up the way Snape trets Miranda and she challenges it. Everything here becomes really ironclad with your plot and ties into canon well.
And then... Severus leaves. He is having one of his fits, one of his moments of panic about being with Miranda, I'm sure, and I'm curious to see how they patch things up--or IF they patch things up. I'll definitely be back soon for more! :)
P.S. I feel like this line is a good summation of my love life, lol. I really resonated with it. It always makes Miranda a bad ass!!! "Usually wizards either pretended she was less competent than they were, or they shied away, preferring less powerful witches"
Hey Noelle! Here for Part 1 of our swap (and RvG of course!)
Oohh, this is such an intense chapter. Miranda and Severus really test the limits of their trust for each other as they both gaze into each other's minds. I wonder how this will change the nature of their relationship in the long run, since their short term solution, which I think is incredibly warranted, is to get absolutely smashed.
Dumbledore... he is a character that I love to love and love to hate simultaneously, if that makes any sense. You captured his voice quite well throughout this chapter, which is a difficult thing to do because he's so cryptic and manipulative. Knowing that Snape is a double agent and how much he detests some of the orders from Dumbledore, I like how you captured that tension. Dumbledore definitely uses Snape's feelings for Miranda against him here--for the (alledged) sake of the Order of the Phoenix.
I loved how you wrote the intensity of the mind reading scenes. This is what I imagine this to be like in JKR's world. We get a little bit of it from Harry's perspective, but in both Miranda's and Snape's lines of work, they have strong mental defenses, so I am sure the process is a bit more excruciating than what Harry experiences. I like the parallels you drawn between the two, with their past loves. It sets them on equal ground, which I really admire in any relationship.
I'm wondering how all of this will come to light in the future (especially with the smoke and some of their other tricks). What a great world you've built!
Hi Noelle! I'm here to finally follow up for my end of our swap, so sorry for the delay!
This was, as always, a really great chapter. I feel like the story is starting to hit its stride as some plotlines start to intersect, and I'm really excited to explore the complications created by those intersections! I was especially excited when Miranda ran into Lucius--it was a very creepy encounter (really, great job capturing how sleazy and creepy Lucius is) but now I'm curious to find out whether Lucius knows about Miranda's relationship with Severus, or if he'll come to find out, and what effect that might have? I also don't know too much about Miranda's moral alignment in the war--I guess as a Gryffindor, I'd expect her to be against the Death Eaters, but she somehow feels separated from it? That's also going to be curious to explore.
I really enjoyed the section in Miranda's POV. I've been wanting to hear more from her perspective and continue to discover different sides of her--and I really liked seeing this kind of pining side of her. But of course, it's Miranda Rose, so she wouldn't pine in any kind of embarassingly insistent way haha. (She manages to be classy and attractive, all the time, and I'm increasingly attracted to and fascinated by her). There was a kind of vulnerability in her slight desperation that was honestly quite endearing; I liked getting confirmation that their attraction was mutual.
Severus's response to that is so interesting to me. I like that you're setting up the complications that come with a relationship that starts off as purely physical--the way that Severus was talking about Miranda made me feel a little angry. Like he can't see her for who she is. But it's so realistic; I like that you're not completely throwing away years of fixation on Lily. I'm wondering if Lily is going to make an appearance in this fic, and would be interested in seeing a comparison between her and Miranda.
I also want to say that I really love the worldbuilding in this fic! It's so creative, and I look forwarding to seeing more of it.
This is such an exciting fic and I'll definitely be back soon (unless you decide to request another review, which would be a great excuse to be back sooner rather than later haha). Thanks for sharing, and thanks for swapping!
As soon as I realized that these three would be a room together I knew that it’d be a tense chapter. I don’t imagine Albus was much into the idea of allowing such a wild card to run free in these times. It’s interesting that Severus went through so much trouble to look into her background in more traditional ways, but hadn’t even considered getting inside of her mind. He really does respect her quite a bit, I’d wager.
I suppose Miranda wouldn’t have much idea of the details of the First war over in Europe - she isn’t quite as well connected as she’d like to think in this time of closely guarded secrets. That said, she was getting closer, hence this meeting.
I love the idea of the magical smoke! What a detail. And of course Albus would have deduced it already.
The image of the wall inside of Miranda’s mind is a great one, although it sounds rather painful. I’ve never thought much into the specifics of this kind of magic, but I really enjoyed this scene for its more in depth portrayal of how it might differ depending on the target. I feel awful that Severus was forced to do that to her of all people. I can’t imagine she will be thrilled about it.
This American Dark Wizard you describe makes me want to know more! I’d love to know how they deal with threats in other parts of the world.
I wasn’t expecting her to turn around and invade Severus’ mind, I must say. It does seem fitting that she’d take advantage of this moment to do so, though. I can’t imagine she trusts him all too much at this point.
I think they both feel held against a wall right now in the story, and they’d like to be mad at each other, but where else do they have to turn? The events of this chapter might even bring them closer, oddly enough. A really thought provoking installment - can’t wait to continue on!
Hi, Noelle. I came back from the request thread.
Severus is a decent man. He cared Miranda so much that he gave her space and time to function herself again. He even set sandwiches for her after shower. Thanks to him, she could feel relaxed gradually. I like her novel choice to calm down herself. Scarlet O'Hara is just like her and Severus is like Rhett Butler! I could imagine how Snape's tone of voice was like while he was reading the lines aloud.
I like the description about American bar. I chuckled at his asking Cynthia the process how to make his coupe of liquor. He is a potion master through and through. I was surprised at the scene Snape can dance or lead the lady! Given the circumstances, he might have attended the Pure-Blood communities, I conclude it's plausible.
The mood is going to be good as it used to be between them, however you did not finish like that. You let Aaron interfere between them, which made this chapter more impressive. Seeing the other man, catching Miranda's genuine smile made him feel jealous towards her and I think Severus won't able to stop loving her.
Then sudden good-bye when Miranda came to be ready for the storm risking her life to love him. The story goes wild from here.
Good to know who Patrick, Finnian and Seamus are... but who is Isaac? Is he someone I should know? Why doesn't Miranda want to talk about him?
But let's go with order... hello, Noelle, darling! Back for your request! Sorry again for the lateness...
I really enjoyed this chapter a lot! I loved to see Miranda and Severus together! I live for "friendly" duels and you wrote that scene magistrally! :D
I also really, really loved Miranda and Rachel getting some girl time together, it was sweet, and imagining them gossiping about Sev was so funny. :P (btw, I always enjoy a good Ollivander scene, too. I think having such a temperamental wand choose Miranda is only fitting :P
The birthday presents were awesome! And all the memories of Severus' parents... You truly made me feel for him... No one should grow up in such an environment... :(
Albus really was a fool asking Severus to teach Harry Occlumency... what was he thinking???? I mean, I know what he was thinking, but it was still one of his worst decisions, which is saying something. (I don't hate Albus, I do understand why he did the things he did and I do believe that he cared about Harry at the end of the day. But there are still many things I disagree with him about, many things he could have dealt with much better. Sorry for the digression...)
I'm loving this story more and more! All your characters are so well built and compelling, the relationships so authentic, the mystery delicious! And I also love all the different cultural details you always include! Speaking of which... it's a small detail but it amused me a lot how learning Romanian became a sort of competition between Miranda and Severus. :P I bet they could turn anything into a competition! :P
Thank you so much for requesting, and sorry again if I took so long to get back to you!
Lots of love and snowball hug!
Hi again Chiara!
Good catch on Isaac! That is an important name, but I'm afraid you'll have to wait to find out who he is. He has not been mentioned in this story before this chapter.
I love friendly duels too and that one was sooo much fun to write. I really wanted to show Miranda and Severus having fun together. And I'm glad it worked!
I'm also glad that the girls day out and the shopping trip was interesting. I wanted to take a moment to go to Diagon Alley and I was afraid it might have slowed the story down. But it seemed a shame not to go there when we had the opportunity--so I'm glad you enjoyed it :D
Yay! I'm so glad you liked the birthday presents too. I think that Miranda was a little nervous to give them to Severus, tbh, which is why she just kept packing while he opened them. I'm also delighted that the trip down memory lane for Severus made you feel sorry for him.
I have no idea why Albus decided to have Severus teach Harry Occlumency and I agree with you, it was one of the worst decisions he ever made.
I agree that Severus and Miranda could turn anything into a competition.
Thank you so much for all your kind words and encouragement!!
Hello, Noelle, darling! Here for the first review for your request, so sorry it took so long... (I will probably leave the second one later this week, it's getting a bit late right now...)
I loved this chapter a lot! I love the way they both care for each other, the way they both struggle waiting and not knowing if the other is still alive... I like the parallel you created between the starting scene and then later when Severus has been summoned by Voldemort. Who is so scary, btw. That was a really powerful scene.
I've told you already, but I'm going to say it again, I really love the Lees! :D
Severus' reactions, with all the cold sarcasm and the way he won't admit how much he cares, even if it's obvious... that's so in character, as usual. :) It was nice to see them sharing some quiet domestic time together, though. (I don't know any of the songs you mentioned, btw...)
I would've never thought of Arthur surviving Nagini's attack because of an antidote Severus gave him, but I love the idea. Of course, Voldemort would be furious. I'm surprised that he's still trusting him. Or maybe he isn't but for now taking the risk is better? I wonder if Voldemort does know of Miranda and if so how much... in any case, they are truly playing with fire... She really didn't know what she would call their relationship and she doubted that it was the sort of thing that could last until death did they part. One would argue that it depends on how soon death will do them part... but let's be optimistic for now...?
Sorry, I'm not sure how much sense I'm making with this review, I'm sure there are a ton of things I should comment on and that are escaping me at the moment... but I'm a bit too tired to be coherent right now, sorry...
Anyway, this was a great chapter! Wonderful job! I will be back ASAP!
Lots of love and snowball hug,
I'm so glad you liked the way I set this chapter up. I'm also glad that Voldemort came off as scary. I actually think he's sort of a weak villian in canon, and so I have a hard time thinking of how to write him in a way that makes him scary--I'm glad I managed to do so here!
I love the Lees too! :D They will be around for the duration of the story.
That is the big question--does Voldemort know about Miranda or not? I can't tell you now, of course, but you will find out in time.
I'm delighted you liked Miranda and Sev being domestic together. I like it a lot myself :D
Thank you so much for this lovely review!!
Here’s another What if Challenge Award Review.
First, I love your description. I am always amazed by authors who can paint such a vivid picture and you certainly did that with Miranda trying to capture the Bohemian Waxwings. These trials are going to be interesting and I’m looking forward to it. As a big picture person, I would, however, like to have a better idea of the scope of this. (ie How many tasks will there be? Does Miranda already know what they are? How long will this entire thing take? Why are they waiting so long-the first task isn’t for another month when children’s lives are on the line?) At some point, you might want to go back and add some big ideas (timeline, # of tasks etc.) to the beginning of this chapter or the end of the chapter 16.
I like Domnul Ursu. He’s a practical man, more worried about getting results than “winning.” I mentioned this before, but there are children’s lives at stake here. Isn’t that the most important thing to focus on.
One line caught my attention. “Catalina is desperate to prove herself and to win her father’s approval.” I think I see some foreshadowing here of a foolish girl whose hide Miranda will have to save.
I was wondering if you would get Severus to Romania (and hoped you would.) I had fears of several chapters with Snape. Thank you for quelling my fears on that.
I love Severus’s description of himself. “Arrogant, petty and cruel.” There is no doubt that is how others seem him but I wonder if he would see that in himself. Few of us see ourselves as others do and he doesn’t hit me as big on self-reflection. Either way, the banter between them was excellent and exactly how we’ve come to expect from these two together.
Thank you so much for your kind words about my description! I really appreciate them. Description is actually the part of writing that I feel the most intimidated by, so it's wonderful to hear that I'm doing okay with it.
Thank you for the point about letting the reader see more of the big picture. In chapter 16, Charlie mentions that he thinks there will be three tasks. I will work something into chapter 18 to make the timeline of the tasks clear as well. (Also, to put your mind at ease, the kids aren't in any danger at the moment).
I like Domnul Ursu too. He's one of those characters that I didn't realize was going to play a big part in this story who just walked into it and sat down. There will be more of him in Chapter 18.
Catalina has a lot of pressure on her, and you've caught an important line.
I have been planning to send Severus to Romania ever since I decided to extend the Romanian sequence. I hope you will enjoy it when he gets there :)
You make a good point about how we rarely see ourselves the way that others do. I may think about this line some more. Although I think that he'd be aware that other people see him that way and I think that he can be pretty down on himself...I may have to bounce some ideas off you later. You've been warned :D
Thank you for this lovely review!
Hi, Noelle. Sorry for late response again. Real life made me belated.
This chapter is terrific, honestly. I have tried writing Legilimency once. I also enjoyed writing the depth of the character's mind. You really did great. You visualized each character's agony, pain the character wouldn't want to remember so excellently that we can catch who Miranda is in your story. One new truth was revealed about her, the smoke was her magic! Cool!
The contrast between too pushing Dumbledore and hesitant Snape or vulnerable Miranda is an important element here. The readers including me can't stop bashing Dumbledore. You depicted him canonically, marvelously, Noelle.
You didn't finish the story as just a plot which demands drawing sympathy from the readers, you made Miranda a strong woman who would take advantage of the Legilimense caster. So many kudos!
Thank you so much! Writing Legilimency is so tricky so kudos to you for trying it too. I tried to have the flashes of Miranda's memories make sense how they would flow from one to the other, but not be a direct line, if that makes sense. I also wanted to use it to give the reader, and Severus, a glimpse into her past.
I'm delighted you liked the smoke magic--it's one of my favorite things :)
I'm also glad that my Dumbledore came out the way I was hoping he would. I love him and hate him both.
Yeah, Miranda isn't one to just go home crying, she's going to try to get some of her own back. I'm so glad you liked this chapter!
Thank you for this lovely review :)
Here to finally do my end of our review swap—sorry it took so long!
I must start every review with this, but wow, I really love Miranda as a character. I’m amazed (and honestly a little envious) at how easily you’ve constructed a perfectly charming character; I’ve always found it hard to write characters that are charismatic (possibly because I feel I have very little natural charisma haha). Even when Miranda was talking about her flaws, she was being so charming. It makes me all the more curious to discover her real flaws.
I also continue to enjoy how much you’re contrasting Severus and Miranda, and really liked that that contrast was extended to the worldbuilding of the American Wizarding World. I appreciate how the American Wizarding World just seems generally more chaotic and spontaneous—like Miranda. I’m also really excited to see how Miranda feels when Severus’s past is brought up. I loved how you contrasted her openness with his shortness.
I’m curious about this potion and how it’ll factor in in the future. I’m wondering if it’s going to be a larger plot point? As a person in STEM fields, I nerded out a little when Miranda was talking about the properties of this potion hehe.
I love how you’re building their relationship to have this kind of inexplicable magnetism. The description of them dancing perfectly captures that, I think—this moment so unrestrained that the confines of time and space also literally fall away and they find themselves elsewhere. (I also appreciated the casual use of Apparition for just a spontaneous trip; I feel like in fics it’s so often used as just this method of transportation, and I think it’s totally on brand that Miranda would view it as an opportunity for exploration).
The one thing I’m really excited to see is how Miranda will react when she finds out about Snape’s involvement with Voldemort. Her past still remains much of a mystery so I wonder if she’s somehow involved. I’m interested to see that storyline develop!
This was an excellent chapter, as always! Thank you for sharing!
Oh my, I'm so delighted that you like Miranda! I hope you will continue to like her when her flaws become more apparent (one of which may very well be going home with strange men she meets in alleyways...)
I feel that the American Wizarding world would be more chaotic, if only because it's so much larger than the UK. I'm glad that that is working well!
The potion is for sure a future plot point. I may bug you a bit about it since you are in the STEM fields, because I'll want to be sure that what I come up with about it makes some kind of sense. You've been warned ;)
I love that you pointed out that space and time went away while Miranda and Severus were dancing and kissing. That is totally what happened and I love that you put it so succinctly here!
It will be very interesting when Miranda finds out about Voldy. Thank you so much for reading and for this lovely review!
I'm loving Miranda more and more as the story goes. I love how her personality is really contrasting with Snape. Snape's characterisation is so good especially as you've put him in this really unexpected situation. I don't think that Snape is that great with change so I find that very realistically. I do think it's a case of opposites attracting as such with those two. I love the description in the first section about her outfits too. She seems so free I suppose? I'm just really enjoying how you're writing their distance.
I think what you've done in this story that is working so well is that you've really got his great humour from Snape. I love his dry humour that you've given him. I think you probably do is this in canon but you're building on this and I think that's really cool. It's really making his characterisation come alive.
I thought it was really great how you build up their playfulness through out the chapter so the kiss doesn't come out of nowhere. it's like talking about the potion is foreplay ha ha. I'm so sad for him that he was stopped by the dark mark from a lovely night! He is not the best at coping with emotions is he? my favourite detail in this chapter is that his affections are really changing from Lily to Miranda. I thought it was such clever thinking that he is making voldemort think that it's Lily! I love the moment when his memories changing back or Miranda. I love how you've build up these two. I have a feeling that we'll be seeing each other again!
[RvG - June - Gold]
I'm so glad you like Miranda! She's pretty wild and I wasn't sure if people would like her :). Freedom was for sure what I was going for when describing Miranda.
I love the thought that talking about potions was foreplay--it's so true! I'm glad that the pacing is going well too--it's good to hear that from a reader's perspective.
Thank you so much for this lovely review!
Noelle! Here for part one our swap!
I must say, I really adore the opening line. It hooks you in straight away. Why is Miranda going to be late? What kind of trouble is she in this time? And why do I get the sense that she's being coy? She's awesome! In so few words, you put her character on full display, which means that all of your previous writing of her characterization is working--keep up the great work!
That dinner scene was both amusing and intense. I enjoyed watching Miranda steer the conversation, using her charm and wit to keep the Death Eaters tame. Severus was right on being on guard. I felt like at any moments, things could go terribly, terribly wrong. And they kind of did, after dinner, and Miranda called them out for trying to put Veritaserum into her drink. The only think that stuck out to me was her calling them Death Eaters--Voldemort hasn't been publically announced as out yet, and I feel like it's dangerous business accusing someone of being a Death Eater. My suggestion is to change it to her saying they have alledged Death Eater pasts, especially since she can't prove they're still currently Death Eaters. Other than that, that scene was perfectly written. She was so direct, I feared the Englishmen would run out of the room in terror, lol! I thought Miranda handled the grop very well--something I know that I owuldn't be able to do (because my temper and anger at their views would probably get the best of me, lol).
The end scene was awesome. It shows how thorough Miranda is with her research. And for her feminine charm. I love how confident she is and how she plays her sexuality as a strength. Her outgoing confidence pairs will with Snape's calculating reserve. Also, I like how you write Snape's point of you. He insults easily but then admires grudgingly, it's fun to see his thoughts shift like that--and it's fun to see Miranda tease him for it.
I'm intrigued to see where this is headed. I'll be back soon!
This chapter was one of my favorites to write. I feel that Lucius would totaly underestimate her and, because of that, be pretty easy to manipulate. And then the way she calls them all out--well, it might not have been the wisest thing to do, but it was sure fun to write and to watch.
Good point about the Death Eater bit. She doesn't know that Voldemort is back at this point, so I'll try to rework the line to make that clear. I do think she would have access to the records of them all being on trial, so she would know that they had sketchy pasts.
I'm so delighted that you like Miranda and that you think and Severus play well off of each other. I have so much fun writing them and I'm glad that it's coming across that way.
Thank you so much for this lovely review! :D
Back again! :)
Oh, my... I can't believe Lucius actually challenged her... and that he tricked her like that. Of course, he underestimated her, just as usual. I also find incredibly irritating the old Pureblood prejudice and how Lucius believes himself so superior... well, among all the other things that irritate me about him.
And of course Severus and Miranda met again. It looks like they can't stay away from each other. I loved Severus' thoughts at the beginning, how he was telling himself that he wanted her back but was so not going to apologize because what about his pride? *rolls eyes* Sev, really, if you stopped caring about your pride so much, people might even like you... *rolls eyes some more*
His jealousy was delicious, too. And the way they practically jumped to each other... :P I also really loved the Morse code bit, so clever. Poor Aaron, though. It must be so difficult for him to keep up with Miranda (with difficult I mean annoying)
It was really interesting to see Severus and Rachel's interactions. Rachel seems incredibly perceptive, but I suppose Severus would be truly panicked and that would be quite evident to anyone... maybe? Luckily, Rachel is right and Miranda and Aaron can look after themselves, although the fact that this happen during a party full of important people is scary, because you wonder what can happen in more obscure circumstances... :/ But for now... all's well that ends well, right? (I wonder how Sev will react once Miranda and Aaron get back home. I can already imagine his outburst... :P)
Loved it as usual! Come back to rerequest anytime! :D
Lots of love,
This was one of my favorite chapters to write. I think that back during the dinner scene at Malfoy Manor, I knew that Lucius and Miranda simply had to have a show-down. It was very satisfying to write. And I do think he would cheat ;)
Severus and Miranda really can't stay away from each other. I'm glad that his jealousy worked. I feel that he would be a jealous person.
Aaron is used to Miranda's antics, although they can be annoying for sure.
Rachel is very perceptive, but I think that Severus would be upset enough that an observant person would be able to tell that he was agitated, even if they didn't know exactly why. And I don't know that he would be trying to put up his occlumens defenses against Miranda's friend.
Thank you so much for reading my story and for this lovely review! I'll be back soon, because I want to know what you think of Sev's reaction when Miranda gets back.
Hi, Noelle, dear! I'm here for your request! Sorry for the wait!
I knew they would cross each other's paths again... and clearly neither is over the other... and clearly Severus is worried for her... I wonder how it'll all move on from here...
Btw, I loved to meet the twins! :D I have a soft spot for troublemakers too... :P
I wasn't expecting Miranda to go see Dumbledore again, nor was I expecting her to actually accept to help the Order, but I'm not surprised either. After all, if Voldemort won the war, he would try to get influence outside of Britain and even of Europe at some point...
I hate Lucius! A lot! He's one of the HP characters I hate most, and your potrayal of him doesn't do anything to make me like him any better. It's a good thing that Aaron came to "save her", although she didn't exactly need saving... I'm a bit worried about this Christmas dinner, though. And I'm worried about what will happen once Malfoy definitely loses his patience...
I really liked the description of the MACUSA... embassy, I guess? It was interesting. And I'm loving Aaron more and more, I'm glad Miranda has him by her side.
Guess I'll move to the next chapter to see what else is going to happen.
See you in a bit,
I love the Weasley twins myself and I hope that I can fit as many Weasleys into this story as possible. I'm not sure how many of the canon characters are going to wind up in this tale right now. I'm finding out as I write along.
I think that the prospect of being a mercenary was just too much for Miranda to resist.
Lucius can be really annoying. I'm a little worried about what will happen when he loses his patience too.
Can't wait to see your reaction to the next chapter!