Reading Reviews for In The Black
624 Reviews Found

Review #26, by Courtney Dark Nifflers on the Loose

3rd August 2013:
I really, really enjoyed this chapter! It was definitely a very light and fluffy one - which is really good, because I always enjoy having a bit of fluff or mushiness or happiness (you get the idea) here and there throughout a story.

What I loved most about this chapter was that we got see more of Remus! His idea for a prank was genius, and there was definitely a Remus-ish feel about it, as opposed to a slightly more thoughtless prank Sirius might pull. You write Remus and his personality really well.

I also loved Filch in this chapter - well, not the character Filch, but the way you characterized him. It was very similar to the way JK Rowling seems to write him, so kudos for that!

Great chapter!

Author's Response: This chapter came solely from my belief that I needed to write at least one Marauder prank before it got too late. :P And, like you said, from the fact that there's a lot of angst in this book, and the story only gets steadily darker.

I can't remember where I heard the idea for this prank -- it definitely came from somewhere, much as I'd like to claim it for my own -- but when it popped into my head to use for the Marauders' own prank, I just rolled with it. And it was so much fun! More time to showcase Remus's brain, of course. ;) Writing Filch is something, like writing Sir Cadogan, I think more people should do, as well as Peeves. There are so many minor characters J.K. Rowling gave us with such distinctive characterizations -- Filch, Peeves, Sir Cadogan, the house elves, Hagrid -- that I don't understand why you wouldn't write them!

Thanks for reviewing! ♥

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Review #27, by Courtney Dark 9 Dustund Way

30th July 2013:
Woo! I loved this chapter?

Hmm, I'm really starting to notice that I suck at writing reviews...

Anyway, there was so many bits and pieces I loved about this chapter that I'm now struggling to remember them all.

I feel Sirius' pain about all the schoolwork, man! Take today, for example. I honestly spent about three hours sitting in front of my laptop trying to write a long and very boring essay and ended up writing fanfiction instead. Whoops. I think this is the reason I loved Beth's comment: “It’s pretty bad when you don’t even attempt to butcher an introduction” so much.

I really love your Sirius, by the way. He's quite different from many of the other Sirius's I have read, who all tend to be quite stuck-up and arrogant. And have way too many girlfriends. I love how eager he was for the meeting with Dumbledore!

Oh, Peter. “Don’t you guys think following a trail of sweets would be a bit obvious?” I'm going to be honest, it sounds a bit like something I'd say but still: oh, Peter.

I've probably said it before (my memory is notoriously terrible) but I love your characterization of Dumbledore! I can just paint this perfect picture of him in my head.

Aw, James! “Yeah, I have,” said James a bit defensively. “Because you know what? I love her.” My favourite line of the whole chapter! But I am missing the Severus and Beth action (is it Snabeth? Sneth Beverus? Betherus?)

Great chapter!

Author's Response: If you think you suck at reviews, imagine how I feel about review responses! :) And yes, by the way -- Sirius's thoughts on schoolwork (which were written during a woeful year of my high school days) are very much inspired by real life. :P All I ever feel like doing, when I'm supposed to be doing homework, is writing or reading or watching TV. Isn't that always the way?

I'm so glad you enjoy Sirius! ♥ He is, as I said, largely inspired by (and written for) Sarah, which is why Sarah Wright appears in the story in the first place. I have such issues with the womanizing, rude, hottest-boy-on-the-face-of-the-planet characterization a lot of people seem to use, and I tried to draw on what we know from Sirius as an adult to influence his character as a teenager/young adult.

The ship name's come to be known as Sneth, yes! And all the other names just look weird to me now. :P Severus/Beth action is, understandably, a bit limited, especially in this early part of the trilogy, but I'm very excited for you to read certain moments that occur further down the story's road. As it were. :3

I FEEL LIKE A BROKEN RECORD. This is why I shouldn't let reviews sit so long! ♥ Thank you for all your wonderful comments and compliments!

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Review #28, by Courtney Dark A Few Truths

30th July 2013:

Hm-tra-la-la-la...what shall I write in this review? I really wish I could just write 'This was a great chapter! I love this story and I love your writing' but that feels so inadequate for such a brilliant piece of writing! So I'll push myself to the max and think of something creative to say.

I can't believe James gave Lily that ring! I mean, it was extremely cute and super adorable and all, and I just wanted to give him a big squeeze, but I do think it was probably a little bit soon - I wouldn't want poor James to get shot down! I mean, I know he doesn't (unless you're planning on completely and utterly AU'ing on me) but still...

As you can see I am feeling totally un-creative tonight, so I'm just going to toddle off to the next chapter.


Author's Response: Just for future reference, you can write nearly ANYTHING in a review and I'll giggle and grin and squeal like always. :D It doesn't take much to make me happy, and the fact that you've chosen to read my story at all is far more than enough! ♥ I'm just so, so pleased beyond belief any time someone likes something I've written. It's honestly the best feeling in the world.

I feel like James would be a sort of take-it-fast kind of guy, especially after how long he's been pursuing Lily. A lot of the marriages in the wizarding world seem to happen young, anyway, especially around wartime, which does lend a bit more credit to the theory. But then again, he could just be in a huge rush. Either opinion's very plausible! I can't tell you how things will end in the James/Lily story, though... that's something you'll have to find out for yourself in the third book. :)

I'm feeling un-creative in the extreme with all these responses, so trust me, you're not alone. I can't begin to do them justice, but thank you for your reviews anyway! ♥

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Review #29, by Courtney Dark Christmas Boys

28th July 2013:
Yet another awesome chapter!

I feel super cheesy writing this, but there was something so Christmas spirity about this chapter, if you know what I mean. I don't know why, and I don't really know how to describe it, but it just made me think: 'WHY CAN'T I ATTEND HOGWARTS AT CHRISTMAS? WHY CAN'T I ATTEND HOGWARTS, FULL STOP?" I'm still a bit cut up about the fact that I didn't receive my Hogwarts letter when I was eleven, to be honest.

James' gift to Beth made me laugh - only James would give Beth a gift that she didn't actually want, just so he could eat it all himself. Although I have to admit, it is kind of a smart move. Maybe I should try it out sometime...

Poor Beth, being stuck in the middle of her parents' tug of war. They are both being very unfair to her, I think - I know I would be super annoyed if my parents sent me letters like that at Christmas, or any time really! And the guys clearly have a bit more intuition that Beth gives them credit for.

Speaking of the boys, I really enjoyed seeing a lot more of Sirius in this chapter - I am tempted to say he's my favourite character in the marauders generation...except then I'll probably eat my words when something exciting happens in the next couple of chapters, so I'll keep my mouth shut.

Yay, we got to see a bit more of Severus in this chapter! Beth's conversation with him was very sweet, in a typically awkward, stilted sort of way.


Author's Response: That's not cheesy at all -- that's totally what I was going for! :) I get so sentimental when I think about Hogwarts sometimes, because it just sort of hurts that it's not real, you know? I want to go to classes and have Christmas and sit by the lake and watch Quidditch, and UGH. (Never mind the fact that I'm too old for Hogwarts now. I'll manage somehow!)

I'm sure I got that idea somewhere, giving someone a gift you know they'll hate, but it was too good not to. ;) I'm sure Beth got him back in her own way, though! It really was one of her better gifts, considering how her parents chose to fight through her on Christmas. Lovely people. They crop up in the later books, too, and each time they make me grit my teeth and tug at my hair. I HATE THEM. Which, of course, made them fun to write!

Sirius is totally and completely inspired by Toujours Padfoot and her portrayal of Sirius (her favorite character), especially in her novel Curious Happenings at Number Twelve. You should definitely give it a read! He's endearing and I love him very much, even if James is my Marauder of choice. ♥ (But, of course, Severus wins the overall prize from me!)

Fact: Beth and Severus are built on awkwardness. But I love them anyway! :) Thank you for reviewing!!

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Review #30, by Courtney Dark The Map

28th July 2013:
I actually really enjoyed this chapter!

I haven't read a super huge amount of marauders era stories but in those that I have read, never has the creation of the marauders map been mentioned, which I personally see as being a very important, or at least a very big part of the marauders lives at Hpgwarts. But that could just be my opinion.

Anyway, I loved how you went about the creation of the map - if it was me trying to write this chapter, I would be absolutely stumped! But you did it all in such a creative way - I loved how the team put all their heads together to create the map together. It was definitely a team effort! And it was nice to see a little more of Remus and Peter - I actually really like the way you portray them. Both of their character's seem to be quite subtle at the moment, which I kinda like.

Hehe, Sir Cadogan:) You characterized (can I say characterized about a painting?) him really well, and he definitely brought a nice touch of humour to the chapter!

I am guessing this story will go a little AU at some points? Beth, being the fifth marauder, will probably change some certain canon events - like the fact that her name is on the map? Or will her name somehow be erased later on? Hmmm...

Great chapter!

Author's Response: True story: I totally and completely forgot about the Marauder's Map until really late in the story, and had to write in this chapter two days before my Sunday update to fill the void. Whoops! But it was actually a lot of fun to do, and I managed to write it in, I think, two sittings, so all was well. Maybe a bit rushed? But I am very fond of it, in general, and I definitely think Remus would have been a large part of the brains behind the operation. ;)

Also, just saying that Sir Cadogan should be in WAY more stories than he actually is, because he is absolutely so much fun to write! ♥ One of my favorite minor characters at Hogwarts, actually. And this story is AU for sure, because Beth's a completely new character. What I like to tell people is that I try and keep as canon as possible, except for events Beth directly touches. The map would be one of those. ;)

Thank you for reviewing!

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Review #31, by Courtney Dark Conversations and Catalysts

26th July 2013:
Haha, I love how awkward all the conversations between Beth and Severus seem to be! Poor Beth - I certainly know the feeling of wanting to smack myself on the forehead after saying something stupid - I consider myself very talented at saying stupid things in embarrassing situations. I can't stand awkward silences.

ANYWAY, I really love winter and Christmas chapters, too. I think that's partly because over here we have Christmas in the summer and I've never seen the snow, so a white Christmas has always been this big novelty for me! But I'm definitely look forward to seeing what Beth and Sirius (and hopefully Severus!) get up to over the holidays.

Oh, James. Not getting a present for Lily - what a typical guy move! Not that I can talk, as I'm a bit of a present-forgetter myself. I really love your characterization of James, so it was nice to see a little bit more of him this chapter.

Wow, I'm just realizing now that this was a very self-obsessed review, sorry about that. I LOVE YOUR STORY! There, hopefully that balances out my me-rant.


Author's Response: Oh, man, there is so much awkwardness between Beth and Sev. ♥ (Which, by the way, heavily stems from my interactions with most people at all times -- I'm absolutely an expert at screwing up social interaction! Words are so much easier, don't you find?)

It's weird, responding to a Christmas review in the middle of August, but I watched a Supernatural episode about Christmas yesterday... guess I should be used to it. :P Are you Australian, by any chance? I've seen snow -- we have a winter Christmas -- but we never see it ON Christmas!

Ah, James, forgetting to buy his girlfriend a present. ♥ He's actually my favorite Marauder in these books, I think; at any rate, I got very attached to writing his character. Dear boy!

Pfft. That wasn't a self-obsessed review at all! Responses are way more self-interested than reviews tend to be, which is partially why I don't like doing them; I hate talking about myself. But readers do so much for me, responding to their comments is the least I can do! ♥

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Review #32, by Courtney Dark Joining Up

24th July 2013:
Oooh, this chapter was super exciting! There were so many bits that I loved about it, but I'll just point out my absolutely favourites, otherwise this review will probably be extremely waffly and boring.

Obviously I loved the scene in Dumbledore's office - you wrote their induction, I guess we can call it, into the Order really, really well! I loved how eager they all were, and I think I loved it even more when Beth was the first to say she was in. And once again you nailed Dumbledore on the head. I'm a bit puzzled about McGonagall though - why was she so against them joining, I wonder? Was she worried about her students' safety, perhaps?

I also loved other random bits and pieces from this chapter - glimpses we got to see of the characters and their lives. To me, they all seem like such real people now, and none of them have these over-exaggerated Mary-Sue like qualities which is always good!

I loved the little details of the scene in the common room you gave us - like Peter and Remus playing Gobstones and Peter winning (I have to mention that I rarely see Peter winning at anything, so it made a nice change) and James attempting to copy off Beth.

And then Sirius' arrival was just perfect! I love how long it took him to get to the actual topic, what with all of the interruptions, like Beth asking if his pocket was squeaking.

Amazing chapter!

Author's Response: Writing the Order scenes in ITB -- if you can call them that, because that's just a glorified way of saying "a lot of talking" -- were some of the trickiest, mainly because I thought they'd be too dull. :P I'm so happy to see that, for you at least, that wasn't the case! As for McGonagall, I responded to another review about this earlier today, but I think a lot of her reservation on wanting the young in the Order is because she's had these kids as students for 7 years. In the absence of a family of her own, she'd see them as her children, I think, and it would feel to her like a mother sending her children off to war, if that makes any sense at all.

Oh, I am SO glad my characters seem like real people to you! That's absolutely #1 in writing for me -- creating characters that come alive and feel real to the reader. ♥ I can't tell you how happy that makes me. I got so attached to every single once of these characters while writing that I always want to think other people are attached, too. And yet thinking that and actually hearing it are two very different things.

You're amazing. Your reviews are amazing. Thank you so much for them!!

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Review #33, by Courtney Dark A Chance Meeting

24th July 2013:
Hey there!

I really enjoyed this chapter - it was great to see a couple of different POV's, which I always find refreshing in a story both when I'm reading and writing. And I was especially happy to see Sirius, who we haven't seen up until now.

First of all, Severus' point of view: for me, you've really nailed the characterization of teenage Snape, which I've got a feeling I've said before, though it becomes more obvious when it's his point of view. As you mentioned, his 'thinking' was super cool to read and then he had an encounter with Lily, to top it off!

And then we had Sirius' point of view. I really enjoyed reading his encounter with Dumbledore - the way you portrayed Dumbledore was excellent, you got him exactly right! And it was definitely nice to see the plot moving ahead a little bit, I'm definitely looking forward to the gang finding out more about the Order of the Phoenix.

Great chapter!

Author's Response: I look back at writing this story, and all the books since it, and the original novel I just finished -- and I wonder how I ever managed to write a whole book from just one POV. :P Writing from more than one just gives books a depth and perspective that would be very hard to otherwise achieve. Kudos to the brilliant authors who actually can do it!

I'm so happy you think I got Snape on point, too, especially because he's one of my all-time favorite characters, and I really want to do him justice. :) At this point in the story, he's still pretty fixated on Lily, and then later -- oh, but you're not there yet! *zips lips*

Dumbledore is somewhat of a tricky character to write, and I'm glad you think I did right by him, too! The Order is a massive part of the next two books, and I'm very excited for you to read more about it there, too. :)

Phew. These responses are getting more unintelligible by the minute, it seems. ♥ I hope you know just how much your lovely words truly do mean to me! ♥

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Review #34, by Courtney Dark The Letter

23rd July 2013:
My eyes are drooping and I really should be asleep right now, so I'll make this review short and snappy.

Loved this chapter! It had so many great moments. You manage to write the little things, like James' apology to Beth so incredibly well. Everything about this story is just so exciting and fun to read and makes me want to keep coming back for more and to find out what's going to happen next!

Anyway, my favourite part of this chapter would definitely have to be the conversation (definitely a little awkward, which I love) between Beth and Severus - it's kinda adorable that they share a secret! But I can't help being suspicious about that owl just coincidentally delivering the letter to Severus...or maybe, like Beth, I'm just overthinking things!

Yet another awesome chapter!

Author's Response: You silly, reading this story until your eyes droop. ♥ Is it weird that that makes me really happy? (Probably.)

One of the things I personally love best about this trilogy is that there are little things that go along with the big story -- small sideplots, if you will -- and I tried to make them as important, in their own moments, as the overall arc of the story. So thank you for pointing that out! :)

Aaand more awkward Beth/Severus conversations ensue! This is their first secret of several down the road, I can assure you. I will say that you probably don't have to be too suspicious of that poor owl. It's mostly just lost and confused, somewhat like Errol. Or maybe it just wanted to play matchmaker? *furiously avoids writing a one-shot from the point of view of that owl*

Thank you (again) for your reviews! I just... cannot get over them. Ever. They are so fab. ♥

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Review #35, by Courtney Dark Just Words

23rd July 2013:
JAMES POTTER!! I have to say, I am very disappointed in him for being such a blabber-mouth with Beth's secret and even more disappointed with Sirius for acting so harshly towards Beth - you have no idea how bad I felt for Beth in that moment! I just wanted to give her a bog, comforting hug and say 'I DON'T MIND IF YOU LIKE SEVERUS!'

Anyway, I enjoyed this chapter - it was nice to see a bit more of Lily and a little of James' point of view. And Beth and Severus actually had a proper, non violent/angry/completely awkward/odd/mysterious conversation. I mean, it wasn't completely normal, but they're getting there! Slow and steady wins the race. At least I think that's the saying. I've never been so good with inspirational sayings.

Great chapter!

Author's Response: Oh, James! :( You have every right to be disappointed in him, of course -- blabbing to Sirius like that was a very rude thing to do. And, of course, Sirius's reaction was less than desired, because he still has the mind of a five-year-old, essentially. It's amazing he doesn't still think girls have cooties, actually. Beth needs all the hugs you're willing to give her, definitely! ♥

It's sort of sad, I think, that a lot of readers felt the need to mark Beth/Severus conversations as huge milestones. :P But then again, for Severus to be getting over Lily and talking to another girl? I personally think that IS a huge milestone for him! And one of the things I wanted to do, more than almost anything, was to move Severus's attentions from Lily to Beth as realistically as possible (I've got documented proof of wanting this even before I started writing the story!). Slow and steady wins the race indeed.

Thank you for reviewing!! ♥

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Review #36, by Courtney Dark Concession

21st July 2013:
Loved it!

Sorry, I'm feeling a little brain-dead today, so this probably won't be a particularly interesting/intelligent sounding review. BUT THAT'S OKAY!

I can't tell you enough how much I LOVE your writing style! It's so easy and so...relaxing to read, and it just flows so nicely, like one of those clear blue rivers in the summer...

Ahem. Anyway, I love everything about this story so far and the characters are all beginning to grow on me so much! I liked the conversation between Beth and James, too - I'm glad that Beth has finally told someone her secret and I'm glad that James took it well - definitely a sign of his growing maturity, I'd wager! And i don't like to see Sirius and James fighting:(


Author's Response: No worries! Judging by all the review responding I'm planning on doing, by the time I get to some of your later ITB reviews, I'll be feeling a little brain-dead as well. Not to mention the feeling of mush that results from all your lovely compliments! ♥ I'm so, so, so pleased that you like the way I write, and that it flows for you, because that's something that's just so HUGE to me. That's one of the things that I need to translate well if I have a hope of selling my books someday, and it's definitely my HPFF reviewers who are making me want to do that, anyway. ♥

Oh, these characters. They're a rascally bunch, but I do love them. James matures very much throughout ITB! Sirius... not so much, but he grows later. I promise. :)

WOW. I'm so behind on responses from you. I'm very sorry at how long it's taking me! I'm going to try and answer all of them, or most of them, today, so there's that. But definitely know that my long response time has nothing to do with your wonderful reviews! ♥ Thank you so much for leaving them!!

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Review #37, by The Misfit The Order Assignments

18th July 2013:
Eee eeeh. *cries at the lack of Sneth in this chapter* You do know that my feels are currently staging a protest? :P

And yet, this was as super as ever! All of the characters here were perfect (and yes, I laughed at Sirius' reaction to being told he'd be training as an Auror). I guess being a part of the Order means that strings are being pulled for them, considering that they haven't officially applied to the Ministry as far as I can recall. :P

I know that McGonagall is concerned that the Marauders and the girls are too young to be a part of the Order, but I can't help wondering why she's so against it. If they weren't Order members, they'd actually be in more danger because of their beliefs and the fact that they'd be mainly unprotected. I just can't help feeling that there's something more than youth in her doubt. (I hope that made sense :3)

WAIT. I was just about to type something about Beth's uncertainty about becoming an Auror but it got replaced by a lightbulb question - is she subconsciously concerned that in her mission, she might end up having to arrest Severus?! :3

And James' announcement came right out of the blue! I know this story is mostly from Beth's POV so that would be why, and James probably thought about it before now, but awww. James is growing up ♥ I just hope that the proposal goes more successfully than Sneth's non-existent relationship is...

And the ending just made me completely empathize with what you said in your AN - they're growing up. Our Marauders are growing up and it's both so sad and wonderful and the fact that you're invoking so many conflicting emotions in one moment just blows me away ♥

Author's Response: *cries at the lack of Sneth in basically this whole book* I hope I didn't bore anyone too terribly by making their relationship so stop-and-start... One might argue realism has no place in fan fiction. Oh well!

I think McGonagall is largely against having such young people in the Order because they were, for seven years, her students -- her children, really. (I'm under the impression she'd see most of her students as children, and would care about them in a personal way.) So yes, it's more than youth -- it's sort of the feeling of a mother sending her children off to war. If that makes any sense!

*whistles at your assumption about Beth and Severus and mission work*

To Beth and Sirius, and basically anyone but James, that announcement would definitely have seemed totally out of the blue indeed. :D You'll have to see how it goes, though!

Oh, I have such intense feels right now. Sneth feels. My babies. :( They're so old now... Oh, don't mind me, I'm getting sentimental. ♥ Thank you for reviewing!!

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Review #38, by The Misfit Forgiving

18th July 2013:
(I totally forgot to say hi in the last chapter. HELLO, RACHEL ♥)

Somehow, even though you're describing a monologue / several days' events in a few paragraphs, you manage to keep things moving and I love that. There are no blunt transitions between event summarization and the chapter's events - it's so smooth and seamless and I take my hypothetical hat off to you. XD

I really like Beth deciding to write to her parents. Even though she's seventeen, she's actually more mature than them in some respects and, compared to her slight immaturity in ignoring Severus' beliefs on blood purity, you balance her character really well. The letter was very aloof on first read, but I liked the touch about Beth trying to make more space - personally, I think that shows she does have some love for her parents to try and give them a decent letter instead of a brief note. :3

Teehee, that chess/poker gag was so funny! And now, it becomes official that Sirius and Severus are allergic to each other :P I love how Beth is starting to stand up to Sirius more now, reprimanding him for his insults - although there does seem to be a lot of bumping into each other in this chapter. Oh, and you did fabulously writing this tension-filled bump with Sneth and then making me burst out into laughter when Sarah bumped into Flitwick (partly because I was visualizing the very large purple moon that is TP's icon floating in mid-air and hitting Flitwick on the nose :3)

And that ending with Sneth! I love the realisticness of this pairing, but ugh. That was one of the moments where there was so much feely tension in the air that I was internally screaming "COME ON, JUST KISS, YOU IDIOTS".

You make me love this pairing so much ♥

Author's Response: (HELLO, KATIE. ♥) Keeping things moving in chaptered stories -- especially my HPFF novels, which always seem to have small time jumps -- is very important, and I'm grinning like mad to hear you think I've done it well. One less thing to worry about! Although, let's be honest -- I'll worry about it anyway. It's what I do.

Beth's parents are so distracted by their personal problems that their daughter is, to them, little more than a tool. So, yes, I do think she's more mature in some respects, definitely (and in others, definitely not). She does love her parents, as anyone with parents would love them, but she's getting to the point where she realizes that she controls her life, and they don't.

Ah, that chess/poker gag. ♥ Sarah's a doll. I am so proud of Beth and her friendship with Sirius, which was really almost as fun to write, throughout the entire trilogy, as her relationship/non-relationship with Sev. It makes it that much more fun, too, that Sirius and Sev can't stand each other... drama!

JUST KISS, YOU IDIOTS. I'm screaming that right alongside you! :D Thank you so much for reviewing ITB again!!

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Review #39, by The Misfit The Row

18th July 2013:
Eee eee eee eee. When the HC task said "review your OTP", Sneth instantly came to mind - so here I am and typing as frantically as I can!

Your beginning is wonderful - you offer so much detail that it's easy for me to remember what happened last chapter without being repetitive. I was worried that as it's been a few months away from ITB, I'd have to re-read a few chapters to catch up but no, you're superb on gentle reminds.

Sirius is spot on - I know I must sound terribly repetitive when I say your Marauders characterization is the best I've read on HPFF, but it's true. ♥ And Dumbledore - he's so perfect I don't have the vocabulary to describe him. That scene where he stands up unexpectedly, and his little speech, would absolutely not look out of place in the Potter books!

Ugh, one chapter in and my Sneth feels hurt. You have this uncanny ability to make me want to reach into the computer screen and hug Severus, because even though I totally agree with Beth on the purity issue, you've written Severus so humanly that I feel bad at his floundering at saying the wrong thing even though his beliefs just grate against mine. It's just so heartwarming and realistic to read ♥

And the way that you ended this chapter just felt right. Beth's feelings for Severus have been Beth's for seven years, and just because the Marauders now know doesn't mean she's going to tell them everything about Sneth, and I love that you're remaining so consistent. ♥

*hands over Nutella-covered chocolate brownies*

Author's Response: I am delighted FOREVER that you chose Sneth as your OTP to review for the Cup challenge! ♥ Honestly, honestly, honestly made my entire month. And I'm very glad that it was easy for you to pick right back up where you left off, because as a fan fiction writer, I think that's really important in a story like this.

I love my Marauders so much, and it thrills me to no end when other people think I can write them, too. :) That's definitely my favorite era to write! (With the possible exception of Hogwarts, because I'm crazy for canon.) Fitting everything into the facts we know, and keeping characters as close to the way J.K. Rowling wrote them as possible, is like a little puzzle for me, and one I always love working out.

Severus will always accept your hugs! Lord knows I've tried to hug him myself enough times over the years. (I'll let you figure out whether or not I'm telling the truth on that one.) He's got really good traits, and really bad ones, and I'm so fascinated with him for those reasons. I was about to say my love for him could fill a book... but then it's already filled three, hasn't it?

CONSISTENT. One of the best words I could see in a review for this story ever! I'm squealing so much right now -- that's huge for me, writing a trilogy. Thank you so much for this amazing review!! You're too kind, my dear, but I'll accept it anyway, just because.

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Review #40, by HeartFyre Same Old Secret

10th July 2013:
I'm glad you didn't make Peter one of those cookie cutter wimps that you could actually see betraying them later on. It gives this story a lot of originality as well as character. I will read on eagerly!

Author's Response: I never much liked Peter, but I set out to write him in this story as someone who intentionally wasn't awful -- too many people portray him that way, and I've been guilty of it myself in the past, but there had to have been SOMETHING about him that James and Sirius and Remus liked. I'm glad you appreciated it, too!

And thank you for taking the time to review! ♥ I'm glad you're enjoying the story so far, and I do hope you continue on. I'd love to hear more from you in the future, too!

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Review #41, by Gosia The Path

8th July 2013:
This book is absolutely the greatest fanfic I have ever read. The characters are exactly like I always thought and imagined them to be. And Beth.. she's perfect. I'm going to start reading the sequel right now as I can't wait to find out whether they'll be together or not! If they won't... I'll be truly disappointed!

Author's Response: How do I even begin to respond to this review?! I am absolutely flattered beyond words that you consider this the greatest fic you've ever read -- seriously, I cannot TELL you how much that means to me. ♥ I worked very hard in writing all three of these books to make them something I would be proud of, and the ensuing reaction has just been absolutely incredible. And I'm so glad you like Beth, too! Writing an OC is always somewhat hit-or-miss, and if it's a hit for even one person, it's been a success.

I know you've already finished reading ITR too, and honestly, I just cannot thank you enough. Your confidence and admiration of both of these novels of mine is just... There aren't words. Thank you so, so much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #42, by Courtney Dark Rescue and Revelation

8th July 2013:
Loved it:)

I'd end the review there because that pretty much sums up my feels but I feel the need to sound intelligent so I'll waffle on for a bit.

I loved the way you incorporate what we know from the books into this story! Obviously it was pretty prominent in this chapter and your writing was amazing. The emotions, especially, in this chapter are what brought it all together for me. Beth is honestly becoming such a great character - I love her so much! And I am definitely having some strong Beth/Snape feels! (Sneth? Bape? Snapeth?)

Oooh, I absolutely loved the tension in that second scene when James stormed up to the dormitory and confronted Sirius. It was kinda nice to see the more serious side of James throughout this whole chapter, actually. I always liked to think that James became a lot more mature in his seventh year and I've always seen him as being the more mature one out of he and Sirius. But I can't deny that I didn't laugh a little at Sirius's comment: Are you talking about that thing with Snivelly?” Ah, I love Sirius.

Aw, Beth crying:( That was my favourite part of the whole chapter. I love how brotherly all the guys are towards her! It's just so perfectly sweet!

Awesome, action-packed chapter! I breezed through it!


Author's Response: Thank you so much! (And I'm sorry it's taken me so long to respond to this, too, before I say anything else.) I worked hard to try and make this trilogy as canon-compliant as possible while working around obvious interruptions like Beth and her impact on the story, so hearing that really makes me feel like I accomplished it decently well. :) I'd say canon and the character emotions are two things I REALLY wanted to get across -- together I feel like those spell realism, which is number one for all of my stories -- and reviewers like you are invaluable for pointing it out. ♥ And if you're curious, the Severus/Beth ship has come to be known as Sneth by me and some of its regular readers!

James's yelling at Sirius is my favorite, favorite part of this chapter, mostly because I really like how it shows the tensions that can arise even in solid friendships (if I can be bold enough to say that). I'm also under the impression that, between James and Sirius, James was the one who could be more serious (irony?) when the situation called for it. He knew when to stop pranks, I think; Sirius didn't. And even though that's mostly my own interpretation, I'm glad you seem to agree!

Seriously, all your reviews. ♥ You're probably sick to death of hearing it, but it truly does mean so much to me that you review at all! I'm so glad to have readers like you for this story!

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Review #43, by Courtney Dark Panic

5th July 2013:
Aw, I liked the Beth/Peter moment! It was very cute it a 100% friend way. And it was definitely nice to see Peter step up into the spotlight and actually get some page (well, screen really) time, even if that was just to ask Beth to help him with his essay. He seems so sweet and innocent, it's hard to believe in a few years he's going to betray his best friends :(

I quite liked the description of the boys' dormitory, especially of Beth having to move a pair of boxers out of the way to sit down:) It was also cool to hear Dummbledore's 'secret society' being mentioned. I have a feeling things are going to get a lot more intense soon!

Loved, loved, loved the descriptions of Beth and James in their animagus forms - it was definitely cool to read about what it was like for them, turning into animals. And I think turning into a bird suits Beth's personality perfectly!

Another cliffhanger! Loving the suspense at the end of this chapter! I could practically hear the alarm in James's voice. Definitely looking forward to seeing what happens next!


Author's Response: Peter! Another thing I was very intentional about in writing this story was making Peter someone who isn't totally horrible -- even though I really hate him at later points in canon, for obvious reasons, I don't think he could have been a totally bad person, or the Marauders wouldn't have made friends with him in the first place.

I don't know a whole lot about boys' living quarters, having grown up with two sisters only, but I can imagine, and I'm probably not far off. ;) Sirius, especially, I see as someone who's a slob just for the sake of laziness! That "secret society" obviously crops up more in future chapters, and I'm excited for you to get to more of its developments. :)

The five Animagus forms became less prominent later on in the trilogy, so reading over bits like this again are sort of refreshing. I can't remember how I decided Beth should transform into a peregrine falcon, but I'm so happy you think it suits her, because I really think it does, too! And I forgot about the cliffhanger at the end of this chapter -- I adore writing cliffhangers. :) I know you've already moved onto the next chapter by now, but I'm glad it enticed you enough to make you want to!

Thank you for reviewing!! ♥ I know I'm beginning to sound like a broken record, but I really am so grateful for all these reviews. You're awesome!

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Review #44, by Courtney Dark Seeking Refuge

5th July 2013:
Oooh, I really liked the change in point of view! I've never really read anything from Severus's point of view, at least not as a teenager, so this was definitely fun to read!

I think you got his personality spot on. I loved that he seemed a little lurky and anti-social without seeming completely creepy and unlikeable. And the you wrote his jealousy over James and Lily was just perfect. It is very clear how much he hates Sirius and James! It was also cool to see a little of his opinions of Beth so far, and I enjoyed reading about their encounter. They are still complete strangers, really, and don't know anything about each other! I can't wait to see how that changes!

Snape's conversation with his friends was also well-written - he is definitely a very moody teenage, isn't he? I dislike his friends a lot already, which I guess is a good thing! Rosier, in particular, seems like he could be particularly nicely!

There were a few lines that I enjoyed that I now feel the need to quote, so sorry about that:

“Then I’d suggest you leave before you disturb anyone else’s studies,” she said. He glanced around at the empty library and looked back at the librarian in slight disbelief, but chose not to argue.' I think that might've been my perfect - classically amazing!

'He hated thinking like that – it made him sound like an antisocial freak' - I don't know why I liked this line so much. It just made me laugh!

Anyway, apologies for this thoroughly weird unhelpful review, just want to say that this was another awesome chapter! (By the way, be prepared for me to say that every time I review a chapter.)


Author's Response: Before this, the only novel I'd ever written was all in one point of view, and now I can't see how that ever happened. :D This story worked loads better from different points of view, and I came to love Snape even more through exploring his mind in chapters like this one! I'm glad you liked how I wrote him, too; I tried to keep him as canonically accurate as possible, even through giving him so many AU situations, the greatest of which is obviously Beth's presence in his life. He definitely isn't a flawless person; there are many aspects about him that aren't very likable, and I thought it was important to write those in addition to the more worthy traits he has. At this point, he and Beth are definitely still strangers, and I wanted to make his getting over Lily pretty gradual, so it would be more realistic, and would also make his attentions toward Beth more realistic as well.

Moody teenager -- and how! His friends are all basically awful. :P They come up in later chapters, and more in the second book (and even the third, a bit), and have quite a profound influence over him even though he isn't fond of a lot of things about them.

You're really great at pointing out quotes I forgot I wrote, and just love rereading, so thanks for that! ♥ Ah, Madam Pince. The two novels I've done set in Hogwarts, she's cropped up, and I just love writing her.

Oh my goodness, don't even think about apologizing for any review you ever leave me! I'm just so glad you're enjoying the story; this whole trilogy is something I'm immensely proud of, and reactions like yours are indescribably appreciated. Thank you so much!! ♥

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Review #45, by Courtney Dark Unsuspected, Unexpected

4th July 2013:
Hey again:)

I enjoyed this chapter (obviosuly) and it was especially nice to to see the main character's personalities continuing to grow. I especially like Sirius and his blatant, obvious, not subtle at all. I dislike for Snape. I absolutely loved his comment: “Severus has been sort of nosy lately, hasn’t he?” he continued. “Hard for him not to be, with a nose like his, come to think of it." That line made me laugh and definitely seems like something Sirius would say!

Another part of this chapter that I liked was when Beth stood up for Mary - it was nice to see that even though she hangs out with four boys, her feminine side is definitely still in tact!

Lily and James got together! Yay! I'm definitely hoping to see a bit more of Lily in later chapters, as I haven't read much about her yet. I'm also finding myself wondering whether she and Beth will become friends...hmmm...

I love that there is this huge air of mystery surrounding each of your chapters (especially when it comes to Snape, who seems quite creepy) which means that I am desperate for more.

Nice job!


Author's Response: Oh, Sirius. :D His characterization in this book (and in the other two) was largely drawn from the way ToujoursPadfoot brilliantly writes him, and some credit must be given to her. I forgot about that nose comment until you mentioned it here, and it made me grin -- totally didn't remember I wrote that. He's got such spunk!

Beth's best friends may be boys, but she's definitely a girl, all-out crushes on a particular male specimen included. ;) And yes, James and Lily are still an item in this story! Their relationship obviously drives a lot of key events of the Marauder years, and this storyline carries us right to the end of 1981, so they'll pop up a lot, and although Beth has her boys, she and Lily will maintain something like friendship. Lily isn't as big a factor as James, mostly because, although this is a Marauders-era story, it's largely Beth and Snape's. But of course she'll make regular appearances throughout!

SO GLAD YOU FIND A MYSTERIOUS AIR HERE, TOO. ♥ Pardon the caps, but as someone who doesn't generally think I'm good at writing mysteries, that's an incredible boost!

Thank you for reviewing and saying such lovely things! ♥ Your reviews are just fabulous, and it means a lot to me to see someone enjoying the story thus far, as you are. :) Hope to see you back again before long!

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Review #46, by Courtney Dark The Confrontation

2nd July 2013:
Hey there!

Wow, it has been a long time since I read and reviewed this gem of a story. And I was hoping to catch up to everyone else, too (sigh). I really do hate it when life gets it the way!

I'll try and make this review snappy, as it must have been a while since you wrote it:)

You write so professionally! I probably already said that in one of my other reviews, but it's true! While I was reading this chapter, I definitely felt like I had a published book held in my hands. This is probably going to sound weird, but so far your story seems to have had a sort of...gothic feeling about it - in the best way possible, obviously!

Because my brain is fried today, I don't really know what else to say about this chapter apart from that I loved it and I am enjoying learning more about each of the character - I also can't wait to see Severus and Beth's relationship develop, and see what the other marauders reactions will be.

Great writing, and you will definitely see me back soon!


Author's Response: ♥ You are too kind! Life gets in the way much more often than I like, and I'm actually a little behind on my own fic reading, so I completely understand. I'm really happy you chose to come back and read at all, though, and I do honestly mean that!

Your comment about my writing professionally is possibly one of the best things anyone's ever said to me in a review. :) I work very hard to try and make my writing as neat and clean as possible, even fic, because it's just easier to read, and I feel like I owe that to readers. And coming from you, it also boosts my confidence tremendously in writing original fiction, which I'm wrapped up in now, and it just makes me feel like I'm GOING to do this for a living someday. And it'll largely be thanks to people like you, who've kept me going through reviewing my stories here!

"Gothic" is just... that is kind of how it looks in my head, and I can't express how neat it is to hear that from someone else's mouth, too. I'm so glad you enjoyed this chapter, and moreover that you're still returning to read more! Severus and Beth's relationship does go places, I promise -- perhaps not as quickly as some people would have liked, but I tried to keep it realistic, and I hope you find it such.

Looking forward to answering more reviews from you, and truly, thank you very much for leaving them!!

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Review #47, by Dont call me Nymphadora Same Old Secret

26th June 2013:
holy crap, I am so happy someone has finally put a female into the marauders!! this ought to be a good one!

Author's Response: Thank you so much for this! It just made my entire day to log on and see that someone had started reading this novel, and I'm so, so happy that you seem excited about it. :) I loved writing these books!

I really hope you continue to like the story, and of course I'd love to hear more from you, if/when you get the chance! Thank you for reviewing!! ♥

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Review #48, by slytherinchica08 The Map

30th May 2013:
Such an interesting idea as to how the map came to be. Honestly your ideas for this all is rather amazing. The thought of using the password came from the portraits and the map itself was made with just one spell. I loved how they each had a little to contribute to it as well. And the fact that peter is actually around quite a bit in your story makes me rather happy as a lot of people would rather leave him out. The chapter also flowed really well and i enjoyed the whole thing. Great job!


Author's Response: Confession: This chapter was TOTALLY written at the last minute, just because I knew I needed to explain the map away -- so I'm really glad you liked how it all came together! :D It was sort of slapped in there hastily, and I think if I'd had time it would have come about more naturally. Alas, such is the nature of writing fan fiction on a consistent update schedule.

I think it's important that they all contributed to it, too, even Peter. It is the Marauder's Map, after all, not James-and-Sirius's Map! Or something. I don't know. I've had waaay too much coffee these past three or four days. But yeah, I really wanted to focus on putting Peter in there properly. I wrote a Marauders one-shot a long time ago and never published it, but Peter got kind of a rough treatment in that one, and it's always stuck with me as something I shouldn't have done. He was as much a part of the group as Sirius, no matter what he did later.

Thank you for leaving this review, too! It really made me smile, returning from vacation and seeing these reviews waiting for me. ♥ I hope to see you back around before too long, too!

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Review #49, by slytherinchica08 Conversations and Catalysts

30th May 2013:
So my goal is to see how many reviews i can leave you before you come back from your trip. Onto the review.

This chapter was actually pretty cute. I love seeing the groups frienship levels and all of their interactions together and i felt that the beginning of the chapter was a great opening. It set up the rest of the chapter rather nicely. I cant imagine having to get up so early and go trudge around outside in the cold weather on your own and wait any amount of time for a friend to come back. The only thing i wondered though was why they didnt just use one of the secret passage ways into hogsmeade.

And i got to have more Severus and Beth action in this chapter! I absolutely loved it! They are both starting to warm up to the idea of each other and the possibility of there being something more than just being classmates between them. I also loved having that little bit of his pov at the end. I very much enjoyed this chapter and look forward to the next. Great job!


Author's Response: Oh, how nice! ♥ Thank you, Erica!

The friendship level in ITB (and in all the books, really) was a huge focus of mine, just because I feel like a lot of times people who write the Marauders forget to incorporate just how strong their friendship was on its own. And then, of course, James makes Beth get up in the freezing cold and slosh around in the snow, but they're still great friends! Beth is too nice to that boy sometimes, honestly -- but he understands her and Snape, more than any of the boys understand it, and I think she'd be willing to put up with a lot more from him for that reason alone.

The end of this chapter is one of my favorite Severus/Beth bits from this entire book! One of my readers made a little fan art from it, actually, and I'll show you that here in a minute; I adore it. ♥ Things are very slowly but surely changing between them, and I'm so excited for you to read about what's going to happen. Oh, there's so much in store for you!

Thank you so much for returning and giving this another read. It really means so much to me, and your reviews are always so lovely and complimentary! :)

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Review #50, by Courtney Dark Unforeseen Suspicions

18th May 2013:
This was yet another great chapter, I enjoyed it.

I am really starting to love Beth as a character. She seems very natural, very normal and I can't wait to read more! However, I found Peter's line about only a couple of them joining Remus during the full moon a little suspicious...

I liked that you brought up the Order of the Phoenix in this chapter - after all, there are only a few more years left until James and Lily's deaths (sob) so it will be very interesting to see how the war plays a part in all this.

Finally an interaction between Beth and Snape! I think you wrote their conversation very well - Snape definitely came off a little creepy, which I kinda think suits his obsessive tendencies. In fact, their conversation kind of made me wonder why it is Beth fancies him the first place...hmm.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to the next chapter, and definitely adding this to my favourites!


Author's Response: I'm so glad you're warming up to Beth like you are! In all the time I wrote about her (nearly two years -- I need a life!) I grew really attached to her, and so it's really neat to hear when readers enjoy reading about her, too.

The Order of the Phoenix will definitely become a larger plot point as things progress in the books! A huge one, I daresay.

Severus is someone I love even while seeing him as he truly is -- and that includes creepy! :) He's prejudiced and one-sided and arrogant, but he's also passionate and brilliant, and there are so many facets to him. I absolutely adore it. ♥ I could seriously write about him for years and never get bored.

Thank you for the favorites add, and for reading in general! ♥ I've very much enjoyed reading and responding to your reviews, and await more opinions from you with much anticipation!

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