It's me again, since you asked so nicely. You poor, masochistic soul.
Draco-the-drunk isn't an uncommon post-Hogwarts trope, but you've done it with a level of realism and detail (or realism because of detail, whatever, you know what I mean) that isn't present in lot of fic. You know how I love your Marked Draco? I love this one, too, especially 'cause he's drunk.
>Draco marveled at the proprietor's cleverness as the >first spray of vomit erupted from his mouth and >splattered all over the bare, uneven wooden floor.
I'm going to assume you've seen The Exorcist? Yeah? That's what that made me think of. It was funny and all, but somehow I'm not quite sure that that's what you're going for.
But anyway, projectile vomit aside, I'm also impressed by how you've handled people's reactions to Draco, and his reactions to their reactions, etc. He's just that kind of person who'd not realise for ages that people's reactions to him do in fact have some kind of logic to them, but who would realise, if that makes any kind of sense at all.
As for Astoria - yeah, she is a bit of an angel-on-Earth so far, but it's not terrible or anything, because we can assume that she's hot and Draco's grateful that she's not treating him like the scum of the earth. Maybe I would have had him be a little more suspicious of her - like, what does this chick want from him, considering his prior experiences with friends & Pansy - but, then again, he's drunk. You can get away with a lot when he's drunk.
Astoria's got a sense of humour though, so she's not completely guardian-angel-y. So - for an introduction (for me anyway 'cause I've not read CoB because I'm a terrible person), I'd say you've done pretty well.
> Horatio Greengrass's beady, dark eyes were filled >with suspicion and naked contempt.
See, I'd always imagined that the neutral Slytherin families like the Zabinis and the Greengrasses were... well, neutral. And considering that blood and class politics (especially the latter) are unlikely to be completely killed by the war, I don't know if Horatio would really present himself to a member of the Malfoy family as an enemy. Maybe that's just me, though - could you explain that, please?
> Because maybe if she can understand then so can I.
should be italicised, because for a second there I wondered if the narrator was a person.
Anyway, this is a review which is probably short for you but absurdly long for me, so I'll stop now. See yer.
Author's Response: Alright, you again! I love your reviews because they're challenging. The only way to be sure that I know what I was thinking when I wrote some of this stuff is to explain it to a skeptical reviewer.
Ha! Yeah, I've seen the exorcist and I wasn't imagining the spectacle Draco makes of himself as being quite that... er, voluminous. I do believe that he got good distance, though. And extra points for style. ;)
Yeah, that makes sense, actually. He spent so much of his life with a social standing that made it so that he didn't really *need* to pay attention to what others thought of him. And suddenly it's important again, and he has real difficulty adjusting. That's why the revelation at the end of the chapter hits him so hard, I think.
Ah, good. That was sort of how I was imagining the interaction of Draco and Astoria. I mean, she is definitely *not* an angel fallen to earth. She sweetly cons him out of the better part of a Galleon! But in his diminished state, I don't think he's likely to notice any of her flaws. She's a savior for him.
My rationale for why Astoria's father was so disgusted with Draco is a bit different. Since Mr. Greengrass was never a follower, I don't think he really has any idea how close the Dark Lord came to succeeding. How improbable the other side's triumph really was. To him, the Malfoys and all of the other pureblood families who supported Voldemort were simply following a murderous, insane megalomaniac. They brought disgrace to the old families and made it something of a social stigma to be a pureblood. I don't think there's any way Mr. Greengrass wants his teenage daughter associating with such people.
That's a good point about italicizing that line. I'll fix that.
I really liked this review. It gave me a good idea about what things stuck out in your mind after reading this, as well as something concrete I can improve upon. Thanks for reading and reviewing!