This was so, so gorgeous. And I was actually going to mention that this reminded me of "Amaranthine" - and then I read the author's note and my suspicions were confirmed! :) (I adored that, and I adore this! realistic L/J is the best) I love this showing of Lily and James, not ideal but rather raw and human.
I actually don't even know where to begin with this review - as I was reading, I was making a mental list of all the lines that stuck out to me and realized that I was picking out at least a good quarter of the story. Your writing is so enviable - every word is perfectly placed with such consideration that the entire piece seems to come alive.
but it was better to ignore the softer feelings, far safer not to feel, only to act. One knife had been thrust into her heart before – the power of a single, impetuous word – and she would not let her guard down again, even if it meant sacrificing her last chance at happiness. gorgeous. No other word for it. The way you subtly referred back to "mudblood" and the aftereffects was just... asdfkl
I did notice one small confusing detail - typo maybe? "Until then, she would hide shroud her heart in shadow." The hide shroud is a little off - maybe you meant one or the other? but the fact that that was the only thing I could find in 5000+ words is super impressive :)
For the end of the war. For the end of her life.
They were, after all, one and the same."
"Draped in black, their faces masked, the Death Eaters were not people, but an idea, Voldemort’s belief that only the pure should survive, that anything less than pure ancestry was simply unsuitable." seriously one of the most profound things I've read about the Death Eaters. I love this line so much.
"Remember that even in the darkest of days, the blackest of nights, the most horrific moments, life is the greatest adventure of all." ♥
"We have to keep feeling the guilt, James. Only then do we know what side we’re on." The way you talked about the guilt that they two of them felt was perfect. Because while both sides were killing, I feel as though that really was the difference - the ability to feel guilty. Almost a responsibility, in a way.
"The darkness won, as it always would, but that moment of light, though less than a second, could last forever, if one chose only to remember."
So basically, I just quoted back your entire story, but there really wasn't a single part of this that I didn't like. It was absolutely beautiful and realistic and so, so gorgeous. This review has mostly turned into me flailing over this one shot, but it's all your fault for making me incoherent. :P
Incredible work. Absolutely perfect. ♥
Author's Response: Haha, the inspiration from Celestie's story was pretty strong. I loved what she did with the ship there, and wanted to move to an earlier time to see whether the same issues could be dealt with in a different context. Not quite sure whether it worked - it certainly isn't the same quality as Celestie's work - but it was an interesting experiment. :D
What bothers me about Lily/James stories, and even about the original books, was how unaffected Lily seemed to be by Snape's "betrayal" in their fifth year. She's Lily - she can't be as heartless as that! It had to have affected her so deeply that she kept it all within, and that always has negative impact on a person. For this story, I played with the idea that it made Lily less likely to open her heart to James - yes, they went out in seventh year, but since when does dating lead to to OTP-status? It's a leap that too many Marauder stories make, and it's a great relief that you liked that addition to this story.
Thank you so much for your compliments, by the way! They're making me swim in a haze of happiness - it's wonderful that you liked the language and style of this story. It was an odd one to write (though I think I say that about most of my one-shots - they're all odd), and there are still aspects of the plot I'd like to fiddle with, yet I'm afraid to because of the words. It may hurt the style too much, and I'll have to be really careful when editing.
That was a typo, by the way, so thank you! I changed words at the last minute, then forgot to remove the first word I'd used. >< Too much excitement to get this posted, haha.
Thank you again for loving this story! And also for taking the time to read it (it is rather long!) and leaving such a lovely review. I can't put into words how much that makes me a happy writer. ÃƒÂ¢Ã‚Â™Ã‚Â¥