Reading Reviews for Sevenfold
62 Reviews Found

Review #1, by nott theodore everything you touch, only dies

29th January 2015:
Hi, Jenna! So I'm finally here for the last chapter of this story - eventually made it. Well, it's not been a year yet since you started posting this, so that's a good thing, I guess?

This is kind of late and I think I said it when you did it even though I was behind on reading, but you did a great job on your first novel!

First, I need to say that this ending was not unsatisfying in the slightest. I can't actually think of a better way that you could have ended this - I can think of ways that it could have ended differently, yes, and ones which might make people smile, but the fact is that Louis's so absorbed by everything that's happened that another ending isn't really possible. This one fits perfectly.

I really liked the fact that Louis stayed with Eugenie when she was arrested. It would mean a lot to her that he actually kept his promises to her and looked after her as much as he could when she was caught. I'm not sure she could have survived if he hadn't stuck by her in that; after all, the fact that her father abandoned her and her mother was the cause for all of these murders in the first place. It was so sad to see Eugenie in the cell and all of the immediate aftermath. I can understand why Louis's not allowed to stay with her - it isn't really a good idea to leave an Auror who's so closely connected to her in the cell - but it was sad that she had to be alone.

I really liked the way that you described Louis's family rallying round as much as they could to try and help him at first, doing everything they could to try and revive him from the shock that he's experienced. That comment about how Dom wouldn't take off when he needed her was sweet, too - I liked the way that showed the true depth of the bonds between them.

It was sad that Ruth/Ada died on the day that she went into prison, but at the same time I think there's definitely something fitting about it. It's like she had to die then when Eugenie was taken into custody and at the same time I think she was ready to. She'd already been punished enough in her life for what she'd done. I liked the fact that she was buried as Ruth too.

I really liked the fact that the next section skipped a few months when Louis wasn't really in tune with reality and what was happening, so this section is when he starts to return to the present and things come back into focus for him. I thought that part was really effective.

The conversation between Dom and Victoire was really interesting and kind of sad at the same time. I think Louis's right in that the bonds between Aurors - especially in life or death situations - can't be easily broken, but it was really sad to see how much he was struggling in that section. I don't think he can just 'get another girl' but at the same time, I'm not sure it's entirely healthy for him to still be so occupied with Eugenie when, like Victoire said, I do think she had targetted him to become the sixth victim. But I do think the fact that Eugenie learned to care for him was part of what stopped her in the end - from killing Louis and from carrying out all the murders.

It's really sad to think that Emily and Louis haven't been able to repair what happened between them. I was hoping at the beginning of this story that they might get together, although then Eugenie went and got in the way and that obviously wasn't going to be happening. Nevertheless, I think it would be nice if they could be friends again in the future.

It's also really sad to think that Louis worked so hard to get through Auror training, after struggling with it more than most of the others, and then his career seems to be over - or at least stalled - after his first case because of what happened on it. It's not something anyone could have predicted but it's a sad end to his ambitions.

The trial was really well written; there was a sort of surreal sense to it, as if Louis couldn't really believe what was going on, but at the same time the shortness of the paragraphs really added to the impact of the events.

Yay, Alfie and James got together! That's so cute, and I love the idea of the two of them together - it's like the one piece of happiness in this ending :P I also loved the description of James as someone who'll love anyone, and his parents reactions to finding out that he was dating a boy. They were so perfect (also, yay that the Taryntula is gone, even if she threw rotten Doxy eggs at their window first).

I don't really know how to word it, but the line about how part of Louis was hoping that it would be Emily rather than Eugenie in that room said so much to me.

The ending, especially those last few lines... wow, they were so powerful. I thought that really emphasised the stark reality, because whereas Ada's murders had been with the aim of killing der Meister's servants, and she succeeded in a way with that, all of Eugenie's murders had been an elaborate show to be able to murder her own father. That last line was amazing - it showed how futile her efforts had been, the fact that she'd failed in her plan and essentially ruined her own life, and that no matter how much she hoped to be, she couldn't become a hero through her attempts.

This was amazing, and I've enjoyed reading it so much - I'm just sorry it took me so long! But now I'm all caught up, at least!

Sian :)

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Review #2, by nott theodore in the dark, count mistakes

28th January 2015:
Hey darling!

So, I have to confess that I read this chapter a week or so ago and didn't have time to review, and then you updated all of your WIPs and I couldn't get behind with them. But I couldn't read this and not finish reviewing the story so I'm back and here to say: YES, I WAS RIGHT!!! *dances*

I loved that opening section in the past with Ada and the boy who I'm assuming is Erik. It was so short and added a lot to the tension that I was feeling because of what I knew was coming, and then we also got to learn about what happened between Ada and Erik, which is something that I've been wondering about all the time I've been reading this. It was great to find that out; I suspected that there'd been something romantic between them, but I honestly never guessed that what had happened was that Ada had killed Erik! That came as a real surprise and it's great that you're still able to include twists like that this late into the story.

I have to admit, though, that finding out that Ada had killed Erik as one of the Sevenfold murders - and she'd been in a relationship with him at some point - made me really worried about Louis because he seemed like the natural next target for Eugenie! You didn't help my nervousness about that by keeping to a third person narrative for the first part of the modern day section, as I thought that we were going to see her kill Louis or something!

I really liked the way that it didn't switch straight into Louis's narrative, though, after us finding out about Erik - it was really effective and helped to increase the tension a lot. And I noticed that you didn't actually name the girl that was talking to Ruth/Ada in that scene, so there was still some doubt about who it was that was the murderer, although I was pretty convinced before this chapter and I was right to be :P

I liked the confusion and the way that Eugenie was struggling so much with talking about her plans. I suspected that these murders were part of a plot to make Theo Nott the final target, but I was glad to hear that she hadn't expected to become so close to Louis and to care about him so much. That gave me some hope for him and I was also glad that there was still some humanity there, because I don't think that she's a bad person - at heart, really. But she's had a very difficult time and there's certainly something kind of crazy about plotting all those murders because of what her dad did to her.

I loved your portrayal of Ruth/Ada in that scene between the two of them as well. I kind of feel like this process has been a little cleansing, if that's the right word? for Ada, to see someone copying her actions and then realising how wrong and unnecessary it was. Part of her wanted so badly to become a legend and a hero, but she's realised that she wasn't really heroic to murder all those people; I think perhaps the first murder she committed could be reasoned out, but the others were much more cold-blooded. But I also liked her loyalty to Eugenie, and the way that she wouldn't give her name away as there's a bond of sorts between them.

Okay, when you switched into Louis's perspective I was so relieved, as I was really worried we weren't going to read from his point of view again and that you were going to do something really horrible to him! But I really liked the way that Louis had to take charge of the situation because of the way things had played out, and even Harry had to take orders from him in the end because of the way he'd compromised himself - although not really doing anything wrong - by lending his cloak to Neville. But it was great to see him springing into action and the Auror really coming out in him. He's had a difficult path to becoming an Auror but at the same time here he gets the chance to really prove what he's made of.

Even though I suspected for a while that it was actually Eugenie, I was still sad to see that it was her - part of me wanted it to be some random killer that we hadn't seen so that Louis wouldn't suffer so much. But I really liked the way that you revealed it, with his subconscious having known for a while and him having feared that he would find Eugenie at the house. All of those fragments that came to him of things she'd said about her father made a lot of sense as that all fits with the theory that I'd had, and I was very excited to see that I was right!

I honestly don't think that anyone other than Louis could have made Eugenie stop when she was so close to killing her father. I do think that she was wavering when it came to the final murder anyway as she'd found it harder than she imagined, but she cares about Louis and she'd intended for him to be a victim and decided to skip him so he has more of a connection to her than most people. I loved the way you wrote that scene, and the way that Louis approached her to stop her from killing Nott. It was kind of sad, rather than triumphant, which you'd normally expect a capture scene to be when the murderer's killed so many people.

I really liked the final scene as well, when Ada finally confronts her demons in prison. It was great to see that part of the story come full circle and for Ada to kind of put everything at rest. I'm looking forward to the final chapter and seeing how you wrap everything up - this has been great!

Sian :)

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Review #3, by nott theodore no brighter light than the look in her eyes

16th January 2015:
Hi, darling!

Ah, I'm finally nearing the end, and I think this will be review 60 on this story :D (which admittedly isn't as big of a landmark as 100 or something like that, but still exciting - for me at least!)

I actually felt really sorry for Ada in that first section of this chapter, even though she is a killer and has, in a way, been brought to justice for it. But the way that you described her experience was so upsetting, and I loved the way that you appealed to all the senses there to really help us imagine it, as it's difficult to imagine what life must really be like in a place like Nurmengard. You conveyed her sense of hopelessness really well, I thought, and the way she hates the idea of just fading into history without a chance to do more. I'm hoping that in the next two chapters we get to find out about what happened with Erik and Ruth and Ada, too.

Oh no, Louis! I kind of want to hit him round the head for how horrible he was to Emily at the beginning of the section. That was so uncalled for! I can understand why he had to bring Neville in, and why Emily is hurt by it, and he should give her some more sympathy and realise why she's so upset. Anyone would be if their father had been taken to prison for murdering people, especially since it's Neville! His comment was so mean and uncalled for.

And, here we go... I thought that Louis was getting dangerously close to Eugenie and here we have him, being guided along by her and about to kiss her! I'm so frustrated reading these sections because I really think that it's Eugenie who's the murderer, and it can't be a good thing if Louis gets closer to her, since I assume that she'll be brought to justice by the end of this story. Then again, if I'm wrong about the killer then it might be alright...

I do think that Eugenie likes Louis, as well, though, otherwise she's very good at faking her reactions! I felt sorry for Molly seeing how close they'd got, and I'm wondering what it was that she had to show Eugenie that Louis couldn't know about!

The piece of paper that Eugenie found and showed to Louis is really intriguing. I'm torn between knowing whether it was genuine and Theodore Nott really did break off links with Draco, or thinking that it's been fabricated and used as evidence to convince people that Nott is responsible for the murders. I really can't decide which, but I'm currently leading towards the former, as I thought I detected a bit of guilt and regret in Eugenie's attitude and if she was the one who targetted Malfoy that would fit, especially if he didn't actually have the links she thought he did with Nott.

I loved the run-in with Ginny, and all the little things she kept saying :P The idea of Ron finally managing to make Draco vomit slugs just cracks me up - I bet he was so pleased with himself for finally managing it!

Haha, I loved the scene back at the flat, and the way that Louis described it, so disgusted with Steak's presence in the flat and then the fact that he's in his bed, and James's sadness at the alcohol having been vanished :P

I loved the scene between Dominique and Louis! You capture their relationship so well - even though Dominique's the one who's older and should - theoretically - be more responsible - Louis can still reason with her about the fact that she keeps disappearing without telling her family where she's gone. And vice versa: Dominique tells Louis what he really needs to be told about Lucretia and the way that he's behaving around her. I love this, because it really captures the relationship between two siblings once they've grown up, and even if they've not seen each other for ages, they still know each other really well and can give good advice. And then there was the reversion to childhood, too, with the memories of making forts (which would be amazing if you had magic too). I just loved seeing that scene between them and I thought you wrote it so well.

Ah no! So Louis's going to see Ruth/Ada again and hopefully find out who did it! But he thinks it's Emily, and that's so sad, that he'd suspect one of his oldest friends of murdering these people because Neville's under suspicion too... I really don't think it was her, and I do think it was Eugenie, but you have me questioning my beliefs right now and I'm going to have to read on asap to find out!

This was another great chapter - I'm excited to see who it was!

Sian :)

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Review #4, by nott theodore everything that happened, everything you saw

9th January 2015:
Hey darling! So unfortunately life got in the way and I didn't get round to reading and reviewing the rest of this story before the end of December/2014, but I've got a chance to read a bit more of it now and I want to try and finish it as soon as possible because I've been really enjoying it (and when I finish this, I'll be up-to-date on all your novels/novellas, I think :D)

I knew it! I was suspicious reading the last chapter about the fact that Ada had been the one to die when Ruth had always seemed so much weaker, and she'd been the one who was ill as well - it made more sense to me that it was actually Ada who survived, but took Ruth's identity as her own so that she could be released and start a new life. In a way I think she went some way to constructing her own legend with that move - by Ada 'dying' in prison, she became both a myth and a hero at once, and the only person left to tell her story would of course be able to tell it sympathetically.

It was really sad to see that Ruth just wasted away, though, especially when she heard that Joachim was suspected to be dead as well - it's as if she just lost all will to live and fight, and even Ada's attempts to sustain her with stories of resistance did nothing. I'm really curious about who Erik is, too, and what conflict he caused between Ada and Ruth - I hope we discover that in the next few chapters!

Draco's alive! Now there's a twist that I wasn't expecting, although I don't think that all of his ranting and raving that people are calling nonsense is that nonsensical at all... I wonder if he knows full well who poisoned him and is just too scared to say, or isn't able to get the words out yet for some reason? He certainly seems to recognise some sort of motive behind it and I didn't really think that he was behind the murders in the first place.

I really loved reading the scene and conversation between Dom and Louis, too, and the way that their relationship works - even though Dom is the older sister, Louis here is the more responsible one who's trying to take care of her. And the part about Steak just arriving in the room with no clothes on made me laugh so much :P

And so Louis finally does what he should have done a long time ago, and goes to talk to Ruth/Ada! I really loved that scene, and all the description that you included - the way that she was so aged and yet I could still sense some sort of pride when she talked about the Sevenfold Killer and what they'd done, as if she still feels justified in her actions. I liked the little hints that we were able to pick up on though, about the fact that Ruth/Ada knows more about the Sevenfold Killer than anybody else alive - of course she does, since she's the one who committed all the murders :P

But all of the things she said were so interesting and intriguing! I get the feeling that she knows something she can't really tell Louis but she's trying her best to help him anyway, by giving him some little hints that will help him to work out who the murderer is if he can process them all and put all the pieces together in time.

Ooh, that detail with the visitors' book is extremely interesting - and I'll say more about that later on. I did promise to tell you my theory in this review, after all, if I still thought it was the right one!

Alfie seems like a really nice guy! At least, so far - part of me is still worried that you've just introduced a character like him now because he's somehow connected to the rest of the mystery, and I don't want him to be! I really liked the way that the others were carrying on like normal, though - and the banter between James and Louis was great - because I think it would be too easy to make it seem like, just because Louis's investigating these murders, everyone else becomes absorbed in them too, but that's not going to be the case.

And now... onto my theory. I've had this for a fair few chapters now and I really hope that I'm right about it, but at the same time I don't want to be because then Louis will be in a really difficult position!

So... this is what we know (I think). The copycat killer is a woman. The copycat killer isn't really a copycat killer at all but is someone who's murdering people according to some sort of method/reasoning, building up to one big murder with the seventh victim and using the Sevenfold Killings link to mask the murders. This person is very cunning and has planned the murders out extremely carefully. They also seem to be able to operate, undetected, inside the Ministry... which makes me think that they're working at the Ministry, at the very least...

I think it's Eugenie Bones. Right now you're either smiling because I'm writing or laughing hysterically at how far wrong I am with my theory, but I'll explain why I think it's her. First of all - obviously - Eugenie's a girl, and she's an Auror too, so not only is she highly talented and strong as far as planning and organisation go, but she's got access to the Ministry and as the Auror investigating these murders can easily throw suspicion in other directions and won't be suspected when she's the one poking around about it.

As for her motives... although I can't come up with a solid motive for every single one of the murders, but I think she's building up to trying to murder Theodore Nott. He's a senior figure in the Ministry and could (by an outsider) be seen as an equivalent to Herr Nacht, but I actually think that her reasons are more personal. We know that Susan Bones was badly treated by Eugenie's father - I think that Eugenie's dad is Theodore Nott, and she recently found out and is taking revenge on him and other people who either helped him conceal it or were involved in the situation in some way. Since Hannah and Susan were best friends, that would also explain why Neville would know and couldn't say anything about it to save himself... and I have no characters left :P Great chapter!

Sian :)

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Review #5, by nott theodore gone away, i watched you disappear

14th December 2014:
Hi, darling!

Ooh, things are getting so exciting in this story and it's sucked that I've been away from it for so long, but there's only a couple of chapters left now and I'm determined to finish reading and reviewing before the end of the month - let's hope that nothing drastic gets in my way!

Also, I'm not ready yet to commit to telling you my suspect, but if I still think it's the same person as I have for the last few chapters after reading chapter nine, I'm going to tell you then. (Hold me to that :P) For now, I'll just say that I think revenge is probably the motive behind it.

The opening was really well written, and so powerful. I wondered if, after seeing Ada die in the last chapter (or possibly die, if she didn't stay alive and just take Ruth's name and I'm so intrigued and suspicious of everything you're writing in this story), we'd still return to her and see more of the dual storyline, because I think it works really well, so I was glad that we did! I really liked the impact that the encounter with Herr Nacht seemed to have on her; he'd been the long-term target during the killings, but when she eventually got there and he spoke to her, it was something she hadn't been expecting, which made her falter for a moment.

I think my favourite part in that section was when Ada looked in the mirror and saw the killer that she'd become, a different person from the young girl who'd borne the name Ada Treuherzig. I really liked the way that she'd prepared for the murder for so long and yet was unprepared, and by giving away her name she let go of her freedom as well and got caught. I also loved the way that the name Ada Red came about, since before this point her identity wasn't known.

I'm also wondering if, whether she'd been successful in killing Herr Nacht without being caught, she'd have continued with the murders and eventually maybe even targeted Grindelwald himself? Or had she always planned to murder just the seven people?

Ooh, ALSO wondering what happened to the sixth victim, and why she didn't want to talk about it...

And then back to the present again... the transitions are always done so well in this story and I was pulled from the past, and made to care about what was happening in the present straight away with the scene that opened that section.

Poor Neville! I'm convinced that he didn't do it, even though the questioners did quite a good job of linking him up with the event and the motives that might lie behind it - I hadn't even considered half of them, to be honest. But he's Neville and if it's him then I'm going to be really sad and upset. I'm so curious about why he took the Invisibility Cloak really, if it had always been his intention to go to Azkaban or if he'd done it for somebody else... The promise that he mentioned seems to have wrapped him up and made him look more suspicious as well, because he won't break that promise and tell people about what's behind it, but that means he's in more trouble. It's so sad.

I'm really glad that you included the detail about Emily having been pulled off the case completely and banned from entering the Ministry too until the issue with her father has been resolved. I think that's very believable, but the sort of detail that's often overlooked. It wouldn't be fair to keep her on the investigation with divided loyalties that way.

Oh, I loved the section with Dominique! In a way it felt like a bit of light relief in the middle of all the death and murder in this story, although there were definitely some serious themes in there as well (not sure I approve of the way that she got the guys to let her talk to Louis, for instance). But I really loved Dom's character and the way that she was so determined to protect the animals in the woods that she got herself arrested. I'll admit that charging the Muggles on a unicorn wasn't the best idea, though :P And I agree, the Ministry should be doing something to protect magical creatures from Muggle construction!

Steak was also great, and I loved the way that Louis just silenced him and the other two carried on playing Exploding Snap as though it was fine :P

Forgive me, but you know I'm a French nerd - I think 'Il n'y a personne d'autre pour m'aider' would work better, and Dom would use 's'il te plait' instead of vous since Louis's her brother.

It was great to learn more about Eugenie too, and the way that Louis's getting to know her... it almost sounded like she'd deliberately chosen him to work as her partner and I'm curious about why, other than the comment about Emily and him falling in love, since there was some definite flirting going on. And her past and the story about her father is... interesting. Very interesting.

I wasn't expecting Malfoy to be the next victim! I don't know why I wasn't suspecting him, maybe because people still thought that he'd been the one to do it and he seemed more of a suspect... although unless he has a really convoluted plan, it wasn't him :P I do have a suspect very much in mind and the latest murder fits with it, though! I'm excited to find out if I'm right!

Great chapter, once again!

Sian :)

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Review #6, by nott theodore unchain my heart, let me be

6th December 2014:
Hi, Jenna!

Okay, tiny French correction before I start the rest of the review, but it should be 'pour vous aider' rather than 'aidez'.

What a powerful start to the chapter! Until this point we've not really moved out of the war and Nurmengard in the first sections of each chapter, and now the war is over and Ada's dead. It's such a sensitive period of history to have chosen to write about and to use as a backdrop for that part of the story but I think you did a great job of writing about it, and communicating the sense of disbelief and horror that was echoing across Europe at the time. There was relief, in some measure, that the war was finally over, but things were changing and shifting so much with the way that countries were being carved up and boundaries redefined, and then on top of that there were the terrible losses to deal with, at the same time as the news and the facts about what had actually been happening during the war started to properly come out and be known by normal people.

Your description of Nurmengard was so bleak as Gilbert approached it - I loved the way that he behaved though and tried to help the prisoners there. I could really sense his disgust as he saw what Grindelwald had done in his own fortress, and even the slight distaste for having picked up some German because of what had caused him to have learnt it, although it became very helpful for him in this scene.

And Ruth is alive! I suspected something when I saw Mrs Coffman at the Shining Gurdyroot as the names seemed to be so similar, although as I read that section she acted so suspiciously that part of me is wondering if Ada was actually the one who survived and assumed Ruth's identity, especially because of the fact Ruth seemed to be so ill beforehand. But now I wonder - whichever of them it was - whether they've inadvertently told the stories of the Sevenfold murders to the current killer, and given them the idea behind it.

And onto the present day again, with Louis watching the bodies being recovered. I have to admit that I was surprised about who it was that died, especially with Goyle as he never seemed to me to be someone who'd really been inducted into the Death Eaters, but the two of them do fit the profile of the previous murders better and also fit with the theory that is forming about who the killer is and their motive for the murders.

You had me wondering all the way through this chapter who it was that Harry had lent his Invisibility Cloak to, mentioning it so constantly and never revealing his name until the end - that was so sneaky! But Harry was so worried about having held back the information and I could tell that it was someone he really cared about, and didn't want to hurt them by revealing their involvement, so I was really worried it was someone in the family or something but to be honest it's just as bad with who it turned out to be! But it was great that you managed to build up so much suspense and tension throughout the chapter and I was just reading on to try and find out who it was.

Louis's interaction with McLaggen was really well written too, because I could see all the tension and conflict between the two of them and the way that betrayed some of the past between the two of them, and the rivalry there. Plus it made me way more curious about what was going on and who it was that McLaggen was going to arrest!

Ooh, I really liked the scene with Molly as well - it's great to see another of the Weasley cousins helping on the case but in a different capacity and I love the way that you've crafted her character too. I'd already guessed that Ruth was alive after seeing that scene in Nurmengard, and now I'm hoping that they can go and visit her and get some sort of information from her that'll stop the rest of the murders, or at least let them know who is going to be targeted next. I don't think that she's been involved in these ones, but I do think that she might know something which would help, maybe that she's told someone the story of it or something.

The last scene was really interesting and enjoyable to read as well, especially getting to know a bit more about Eugenie's past and her family, and the bit of potential romance there with Louis and Eugenie too! He seems to be kind of confused about who he likes but it was intriguing to see that, as she seems so professional normally that she wouldn't contemplate flirting like that. It is quite a stressful situation, though.

And now... okay, I'm not going to say who my suspect is here yet because we're only just over halfway through the story, but I do have a suspect and nothing that's happened in this chapter has made me change my mind about that. It's someone that plays quite a major role in the story and I also think that the motive has now been explained, too... I get the feeling that these copycat killings are either being carried out to throw the Aurors off the scent of why the real target is/will be killed, or that there's a personal grudge against all the victims and that it's building up towards the last one, who's the main target. But there have been four murders already and I'm getting a bit worried about whether or not they'll actually be able to stop the killer before the next three happen!

And oh my goodness, I definitely wasn't expecting the ending! It was a great way to end the chapter, very dramatic and now I can't wait to know why Neville had the cloak, and what he was doing with it and where it is now - I don't think that it can have been him, who killed all those people, but I want to know what happened!

Sian :)

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Review #7, by nott theodore ember in your name

14th November 2014:
Hi, hi, hi!

So NaNo is over (for me) and I finally have the time to get back to this story and come and leave a review for some NaNo encouragement, as I've been an awful mother and have been neglecting you as my wonderful NaNo daughter... Anyway, hopefully this helps to spur you along!

I really enjoy the way that you start each chapter with a scene from the past, with Ada, and then switch to Louis for the second part. It's great to get to know both stories at the same time, and the parallel narrative is so interesting - the only annoying thing is that I'm left wanting to know more about each period and what's going on in them both (not annoying for you, but for me when I don't have much time), and find out what's going to happen!

Aw, poor Ruth, she really doesn't sound like she's doing well - although I don't imagine many people would do in Nurmengard, to be honest. It's kind of a morbid entertainment to listen to Ada tell the stories about the murders that she's committed, but I can kind of understand why she wants to hear about them - they probably give her a sense of power and the hope that people can stand up to Grindelwald and his followers.

As a side note, I just wrote a one-shot about Grindelwald last month and called his second-hand man Heinrich Nacht without even having read this chapter :P

The next two murders that Ada committed are really intriguing me. I like the fact that we got to know about them naturally, since Ruth was asking for the story, but also the fact that things seem to be starting to turn as well. Originally I can see Ada being cast as a sort of hero, and a symbol of hope, but for some people she's probably becoming someone to be feared, even those who don't support der Meister. If they weren't really supporters of Grindelwald then it makes sense people would be angry, and in a way it seems like she only killed them for the sake of it - almost as though she enjoys it now, which is chilling.

I'm really curious about Erik and the way that he seems to have come between Ada and Ruth at some point, too...

Another thing that's great about these sections with Ada is that they sort of foreshadow what's going to happen in the next section with Louis, only there's not enough information there to really tell us who the targets will be. It makes me feel kind of helpless, just like Louis does, because it makes the murder of another two people feel sort of inevitable. I'm just hoping that they really do manage to stop the modern day killer before the seven people get murdered!

And then the switch to the present-day, with Louis, again. I was already feeling tense because of knowing what would happen, but I eased into a false sense of security a bit because Louis's narrative is so easy to read and enjoyable.

All of the politics at the beginning was really interesting - I definitely feel like it's something that Louis should swat up on a bit, since he's working in the Ministry and will have to work for one of these people when they get elected. And Bones's comments were interesting, too, although I think a bit more prejudiced that necessary - it's very different to the way that Louis and his family have been brought up, I think.

So, I'm not surprised that Runcorn's denying it, but equally, I don't think that he did it. I have a theory that's been forming over the last few chapters, and if it ties in with the next chapter I might even reveal it in a review (I don't want to mention it too early on in case someone reads it and it's right :P).

And Molly's research is going well (though not well enough, judging by the end of this chapter), and I loved the conversation when she asked Louis about Eugenie Bones's relationship status. He was so awkward about it and his feelings are all confused, and it really makes me laugh. This guy definitely needs some lessons in making up his mind where girls are concerned!

The scene at the care home was really sweet, too. I loved the way that you wrote Molly's character, although it's horrible to think of her older and frail - I could understand Louis wanting to help her but having to remember that she was normally independent and he shouldn't try and take that away from her. The conversation he had with her was very interesting, too, although kind of sad looking back over those old pictures and realising what had happened to people in them and their families. Especially Susan's family - they suffered so much, and now I'm really curious about who Eugenie's father is, too. Maybe someone who died during the war?

Ha, I wonder what Nana Molly would say if he told her about Lucretia - I bet she wouldn't be best pleased!

Okay, Louis was being a complete idiot to Emily, and that was completely unnecessary and now I'm annoyed at him. He has no right to try and decide who she sees whatsoever, and she was completely right to walk out. He really needs to decide if he likes her or Eugenie or Lucretia because he's just being annoying as far as that's concerned, and of course James is going to agree with him. *rolls eyes*

Hmm, there are definitely hints and clues in this chapter that seem like they could fit with my theory about the killer, but I'm not willing to say yet.

Haha, that dream was so funny to imagine happening!

And there we have it - another cliffhanger, leaving us guessing the identity of the next two murder victims! I wish they'd been quick enough to work it out and stop them but this copycat killer is clearly very prepared. My current guess is that Runcorn and Nott are going to be the two victims of this murder, but I'm not sure. If they are though, it'll fit with my theory quite well!

This was another great chapter, and I'm about to run out of characters so I'll stop rambling and just say good luck with the rest of NaNo - you're amazing and you can do it, and I'll be back for more soon!

Sian :)

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Review #8, by Hori all dead hearts to you

10th November 2014:
So, this review is about a million years beyond the deadline for the October exchange, but better late than never! :) Sorry for the tardiness.
Once again, the mix of the historical sections and the more conversational storytelling of Louis is a very interesting combination, and I still can't wait to see how the two are connected. You show a lot of skill is being able to leap between two very distinct styles of narrative.
This chapter saw a lot of the extended family histories being elaborated on, and I enjoyed that quite a bit. If I had to critique anything, I would say that the beginning of Louis' section took a moment to gain proper traction with the lengthy explanation of James' history. I think it could have been more effective to start with James' interaction with his Ginny, leading Louis to explain to the reader why their relationship is strained. A minor suggestion. :)
It's still quite fun to see how Louis interacts with all of the women in his life. His relationship with Bones in particular is becoming very interesting, and I'm looking forward to seeing how their work together develops.
I think your dialogue may be one of my favorite aspects of your writing. It's very natural and conversational in most places, and I especially liked the brief switch to french for the sake of privacy. I think it is a solid decision on your part to keep the conversations very natural and minimalistic, while Louis expands on their context through narration.
Great chapter! Looking forward to reading on!

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Review #9, by TheHeirOfSlytherin all romantics meet the same fate

30th September 2014:
Murder and mystery and Louis. See, now you're stuck with me. Fair warning: I review like a crazy person. :D

You have a way with words that I am beyond jealous of. The beginning was just - wow. It pulled me in and now I'm hooked. I'm very curious about this Ada - what she did, who to and why. I assumed they're bad people, or people she viewed as bad, if others from her day called her a Martyr and the first person to die in Louis' time was a Death Eater/prisoner.

But then I read your A/N; based on what you've said and my own mystery thriller writing experience, I know not to expect anything. And I don't. I'm reading this with an open mind and an over active imagination... and goosebumps... and a slight amount of terror that makes me very excited for more.

I love that you've chosen Louis. He seems to growing into a slightly more popular character, I've read a fair few stories about him, but compared to others he's still vastly underrated and there's so much you can do with him. So it's great that he's one of the PoVs. I can't wait to see what you do with him.

Eugenie Bones is already a very intriguing character. Having grown the reputation she has and with the way she handles herself, I know she's not the type of character you want to mess with... I could see her committing these murders... ;)

Nurmengard sounds just as terrifying as Azkaban. I honestly wouldn't want to be in either of those places.

This was amazing. I'll definitely be back for more.


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Review #10, by nott theodore something in the way she moves

16th September 2014:
Hi Jenna! Ah, sorry it took me a little longer than I expected to get back to this story, I've missed reading it!

I really love the way that you've split this narrative throughout the chapters so far in the story so that we're getting to learn more about the Sevenfold killings and then the present day copycat killings. It builds up the intrigue and tension really well and makes me wonder what's going on, and try to work out what the real links between the two sets of killings actually are!

Madame la Douloureuse is a really intriguing character! She sounds very chilling, actually, and very dangerous, but I can imagine she was quite powerful in the circles that she moved and at the time, the fact that she's a woman who wasn't afraid to use her sexuality would probably make people even more wary of her and scared of her too. I really like the way that you're tying the second world war into the wizarding world though, and showing the influence that it had on people in Germany. I feel sorry for Ada's mother and in a way I can understand why she felt so vengeful towards the people who were so important and influential in the regime, because they did tear her whole family apart. But at the same time it's terrifying that at this point she's still a girl and is prepared to commit murder as if it doesn't really matter.

I liked the appearance of the red ribbon again though, and seeing the way that links in to the modern killings, and I'm wondering whether Ada's mother is actually still alive or whether she ended up dying and perhaps that spurred another killing.

I love Louis as a narrator. It's so interesting to read this story from his perspective, and obviously at this point he's at the forefront of everything so it's great to find out everything that's going on. He dealt really well with discovering Umbridge's body, even if he was all awkward and uncomfortable when he went into the mortuary and saw Emily about to perform the post mortem. But I'm really enjoying seeing the mystery from his perspective and finding out all the information that the investigators find out as it happens.

It was great to see another of the Weasley cousins as well! I really like the way that you're slowly introducing them into this story but also when they're actually important to the plot. Molly was really great, and I loved the way that you managed to tell us so much about her and her past in just a couple of paragraphs! I've never seen Audrey dead before, and I also like the conflict between Molly and Victoire.

I did notice just one typo though!
'she needs to sneak with you lot' - I think this should be 'speak'?

Molly seemed like a really good character to introduce the Aurors to the historical mystery as well! It was so exciting to see them establish that link finally, and the fact that they now know what might be happening next, if only they can get to know who the third and fourth victims are though.

It might just have been me, and maybe it was because of the way that Molly was kind of flirting with her, but Eugenie seemed a bit... distant? She didn't seem as interested in the information as I thought she would be. But now I'm intrigued even more about who could possibly be committing the crimes, as it seems like it would take quite specialised knowledge to find out about them, even if the archives are open for everyone. And I'm curious about whether or not the former killers are actually the target or if the copycat killer is warming up to kill someone else...

I really liked the scene between James and Louis, too, and getting the chance to see a bit of vulnerability in James who doesn't often get portrayed as anything but completely confident. It was great to see them there, although when they used 'brew' and drank beer it seemed a bit at odds...

I don't like Lucretia any more than I did before but it was fun to read about their night out. I feel like Louis's not even sure himself what he wants right now as far as romance is concerned - he's happy to just go along with Lucretia while he works it out, though. I'm really intrigued what Hannah told him that was important, though - I hope he manages to remember or find it out soon!

Sian :)

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Review #11, by whykay everything you touch, only dies

16th September 2014:
He had hoped it was Emily - he perhaps knew it would have to be Eugenie. And that sentence about somethings that cannot be said, to even oneself. That is so true.

And oh! I loved your portrayal of Louis Weasley. Great story. I do hope Emily and Louis make it up to each other. They were good friends and a passing glance just doesn't do it.

Author's Response: Hello! :)

Yes, exactly! I'm glad you understood what Louis was secretly thinking so well. It would be really hard to say that, even to himself, but I do think that even though he found Eugenie in that room and was sort of expecting it he really didn't want it to be her.

I'm so glad you liked Louis! I think they will eventually become friends again, but it will take time and Louis is pretty preoccupied with the outcome of the murders.

Thanks so much for reading the story and the lovely review!! :)

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Review #12, by hokiechick everything you touch, only dies

27th August 2014:
Compelliing, creative, impressive.
Those are the first three words that came to my mind while reading your novel. I'm just so completely blown away by your talent. This is without a doubt the best work of fanfiction I have ever read, and I've been reading for well over a decade now.

I honestly can't say more because I'm so utterly in love with your writing. The skill with which you built these characters is unparalleled. I'm convinced that if you wanted to do this professionally (or already do) you would be a phenomenal success.

The only thing this novel needs is about 1000 more reviews and a few Dobby's. Maybe a podcast special. Best wishes to you and my profound thanks for sharing this wonderful story with all of us.

Author's Response: Hello! :)

Wow. So I've been at a bit of a loss for how to respond to this wonderful review and have come back so many times over the past few days just to read it over and soak in your lovely, thoughtful words. Thank you so much - it is both humbling and heart-warming to know that this is a story you really enjoyed, especially since it is so close to my heart.

I would love to write professionally someday, and I know that whenever I get discouraged I'll have wonderful reviews like this one to re-read and encourage me. Thank you so very much again for this. ♥

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Review #13, by nott theodore in the midnight hour

24th August 2014:
Hi Jenna! Back again for another chapter of this wonderful story!

The opening scene at Nurmengard was really interesting! The way that you opened this chapter was so beautiful, the descriptions were almost poetic and it was so lyrical which was kind of at odds with the horrific idea and reality of Nurmengard but at the same time it worked really well and was really effective. The image of the prison was so vivid in my mind and I felt really sorry for Ada in her suffering there!

It's been two years now since the last section with Ada and I'm really intrigued about her transformation during that time and what events led to her actually being captured by Grindelwald (or his supporters) and ending up in his prison. You wrote Ada's thoughts and feelings in that scene really well and I was so intrigued to read about the different crimes that she's committed, even if I'm not entirely sure how she came to commit them! The detail about Madame la Douloureuse (brilliant name, by the way - so evocative!) was particularly interesting considering later events!

The introduction of Ruth made me very curious as well! I'm so intrigued about her character too and how she's got wrapped up with all of it and ended up in Nurmengard. I wasn't expecting to see one of Ada's old schoolmates in prison with her but I really want to know what the Erik incident was all about and what happened! Was Ada violent even when she was at school, or is it something more innocent?

I absolutely love Louis's character! He's just so real and believable and it's great to get to learn more about him as the story goes on, getting to know more about his background and the events that have shaped him in the past. The relationship between James and Louis makes me laugh a bit although I don't really like the sound of Lucretia or Taryn!

Oh my goodness, when Louis rushed out of bed screaming, I didn't think it was just going to be a spider in his bed (although I can understand how that would be a shock :P), I thought it was going to be somehow related to the murderer or something like that. I was really worried that something was going to end up getting Louis involved and suspected or whatever so I was kind of relieved that it wasn't that!

Aw, it's so sad to think of Molly and Arthur being in an old people's home :( I don't like the idea of them getting old but you've never been afraid of tackling those sorts of subjects so of course it's great that you did it here.

Hmm, this Mrs Coffman - should I be suspicious of her? It sounds a bit like Kaufmann and maybe she's related to Ruth, since we know how long wizards and witches can live? I don't know if she's just an old lady that James is friendly with or something more involved...

And wow, I wasn't expecting that ending to the chapter! I thought that there'd be another murder sometime soon but I didn't expect for it to be at the old people's home where Louis was visiting! James's reaction was really realistic too, because I think it would be difficult for someone to take that sort of thing in their stride if they've not had any experience, like Louis has. And an old woman, dressed in pink - Umbridge? Pushed out of the window like Madame la Douloureuse? Hmm, so suspicious and intriguing! (Although I actually hate the idea that Umbridge might have been at the same home as Molly and Arthur, poor them!) I'm guessing that this has some connection to all the people who worked for Voldemort at some point during the wars? Some sort of revenge? I'm so intrigued to know what's happening!

Sian :)

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Review #14, by teh tarik something in the way she moves

19th August 2014:
Hey Jenna!

I'm back again, and if I counted correctly, then this is the last of the prize reviews for winning the challenge! But I shall definitely keep on reading; your story is fabulous! ♥

Madame la Douloureuse sounds like a seriously awful character. I can't even begin to imagine what sorts of magical experiments she conducted on her prisoners, and I suppose she really had this coming. Poor Ada; I wonder if she found her mum alive at all in the Madame's house? The parallels between Madame da Douloureuse and Dolores Umbridge were very clever - the names, the fact that they're both women with a lot of political power, and I'd argue that their femininity (Madame's sexuality and Umbridge's love of pink etc.) makes them even more reviled figures in the eyes of society.

It's lovely to see the introduction of yet another Weasley family member. I love Molly's character as a smart, tough archivist who raised her little sister. I think she's my favourite of all the Weasleys introduced so far! And she has a thing for Bones, I see. :P Also, I think Molly is the perfect character to reveal the whole mystery of the sevenfold killer to Louis and Bones. Things are beginning to link up now, between the two timelines, and I'm excited whenever new information comes up, connecting the two eras.

So another false lead with the invisibility cloaks from Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes.

Louis's night out with James and the Taryntula (love this nickname!) and Lucretia was fun to read. There's nothing serious between Louis and Lucretia, and I find it very amusing that he hears Victoire's voice in his head, sternly rebuking him whenever he think of Lucretia. And gah! Louis gets so drunk that he doesn't remember the supposedly important thing Hannah told him! I'm intrigued to find out; I feel that there's something going on with the Longbottoms as well, with Harry arguing with Neville in the previous chapter and so on.

This story has been amazing to read so far! I love the plot and the large cast of characters and how you wrote the Weasley-Potter family with all their quirks and idiosyncrasies. It's a very complex novel you've written, and I applaud you for this. I can't wait to see how this turns out. I'll be back soon to read on! :hearts;


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Review #15, by TidalDragon ember in your name

18th August 2014:
Wow. Creepy dream there at the end.

I thought the introduction of conflict between Louis and Emily at the end was nice. It added a new dimension to both their friendship and the fact that I think they're dancing around each other at the moment. They sure know how to cut one another if they want to (which brought Louis's temper to the fore a bit) and what will push the other's buttons as well. Fun!

As far as the Bones goes, I think it's interesting that most of her development isn't really happening THROUGH her. In this chapter for example, we get the revelations from Molly about her history and background. I'm not really sure how these particular ones could have come out another way, but I think it would be nice for Eugenie to grow a little more before us. I'm hoping this will be the spark to that since it adds some more flesh to her on which Louis can base thoughts and observations.

This chapter also really bulked up the mystery though. You did a good job throwing in potential clues about different individuals here. Bones is obviously implicated, which would be an interesting parallel being that she's female like Ada. Neville (with Harry possibly acting in complicity) is also out there with the borrowed-cloak bit.

Since I also was kind of picking on Louis and his rapidly changing thoughts on the ladies, I'll come back and add that I felt this was a welcome change. Even though that was still addressed, he seemed to settle down a bit in that regard here. What's interesting about it is that Lucretia, Bones, and Emily are ALL still featured in this chapter, yet unlike before it doesn't come off as moving too quickly. Perhaps that's the fact that you spaced them out more and used other characters to address his feelings toward them than just his own thoughts? I'm not sure (I'm getting tired...), but I thought it was handled better here, even if I'm so pro-Louis/Emily his indecision and ignoring the obvious is driving me a little nuts :p

Looking forward to the next chapter!

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Review #16, by teh tarik in the midnight hour

18th August 2014:
asldkjklaf yet another intense chapter! I did NOT expect that death at the end. Woman in pink - Umbridge? Pushed out the window, just like Madame la Douloureuse during Ada's time? These copycat murders are both so frightening and intriguing. OK, I"m probably a bit paranoid, but I'm a bit suspicious about this Mrs Coffman. Louis notices she has a wand in her pocket or something. Also, I dunno, her name sounds a bit like Kaufmann? And Ruth Kaufmann was asking Ada if she had indeed pushed Madame la Douloureuse out of the window, and Ruth's a Muggle-born; she would have plenty of motive to attack all these people. But that would make her...a hundred years old or something. Bah! Maybe this is one of the 'false clues' that you've been warning your readers about in your author notes!

OK, back to the beginning. You described Nurmengard so vividly, and you wrote Ada's sad prison life in all its squalor very well. Despite her terrible living conditions and her fate, Ada remains unbroken. She's so bitter and vengeful and yet there are those moments, e.g. when she sees Ruth again, which show that she's just a girl, a schoolgirl who's been through so much and killed so many. I love the title of 'the sevenfold killer' by the way. It's a really creepy title, and 'sevenfold' is such a biblical word, and it really reinforces the whole concept of Ada taking matters into her own hands and dishing out justice in a violent and devastating way.

Louis's relationship with James just continues to make me laugh. Clearly Louis cares a great deal for his cousin, but sometimes James does go too far, and it sounds like Louis is only barely tolerating him. And ooh, Louis fancying Bones? It's quite interesting, especially seeing how he's so possessive of Emily as well. Maybe Louis is going to have a romantic crisis soon. :P I'm very intrigued about what Harry and Neville were arguing about. You have such a large cast of characters, but I can't wait to see how all their stories tie together in the end!

Can't wait to read on!


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Review #17, by teh tarik all dead hearts to you

18th August 2014:
Hey Jenna!

Back again. And wow, so much has happened in this chapter. I don't know how to explain this, but by the time I finished reading this chapter, I felt like I'd come a very, very long way since the first sentence, back in Zauberei Dorf. I love the pacing of your story, and how it's unfolding so naturally. Even with the parts where there are less action, there's still plenty of surprises, namely Louis's hugely interesting family members. :)

Like the first couple of chapters, I loved Ada's section. The killing of Gottschalk, and how cold and calculating Ada is throughout the whole act. I imagine she would indeed feel so much hatred at seeing Gottschalk frequenting the church which she used to attend with her family, corrupting the place. I'm guessing Gottschalk is a religious man and that his nightly visits to the church are for prayer purposes, and Ada recognises this hypocrisy. It's also completely logical that Ada loses her faith in religion and God that night and decides to take matters into her own hands. I thought it was a brilliant detail to include her first failed attempt at using the Killing Curse. It's a bit terrifying how, after failing the first time, she deliberately recalls her murdered father in order to summon up enough hatred for a strong enough intent to kill, to discard any last shred of innocence she might still have, and make the curse work. And the perfect little bow on Gottschalk's chest was another very unusual yet brilliant detail.

I loved all the parts with Louis and his family too! From the irresponsible and wayward James to Victoire and her very feminist stance, to Dominique and her hippiness and boyfriends with weird names. :P They're such an entertaining and lively bunch - even Molly who's supposedly bland and plain and all, is a potential serial killer. Well...according to Bones, that is. The wonderful thing about your introduction of the Weasley/Potter family members is that they don't always get along perfectly. Fleur and Ginny seem to be rather argumentative toward each other, Ginny refuses to pronounce Louis's name correctly, everyone disapproves of Dominique and this 'Steak' dude and so on. They're such a discordant bunch, but so realistic. :)

And Bones is a little strange in this chapter. She's incredibly intriguing. Louis may be getting along well with her, but I sense that there's probably a whole lot that he doesn't know about her. I'm intrigued to know why she told Louis to send Victoire her regards. I remember in the first chapter (which I only just read a few hours ago) she mentioned not knowing Victoire well at all, except for being the girl petitioning teachers and such. Hmm, even Victoire finds it puzzling. Or maybe there's something between the two girls that Louis doesn't know? Ooh, mystery!

I'll definitely be back to read the next chapter soon! This is going fabulously well. :D


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Review #18, by teh tarik dreams filled with silver and gold

17th August 2014:
Gah, this was such an intense chapter, especially the first part about Ada. I love your description of the little magical village of Zauberei Dorf, down to the littlest detail of the school teaching entry level Charms. And it was crepy to see how der Meister's reign transformed such a peaceful place into one of terror and suspicion. People disappearing from their homes is such a scary thing, and I can't imagine the plight of the town inhabitants living in fear of those dreadful visits from die Guten. I enjoyed the way you linked what was happening to the wizarding world with the Muggle world, how the reigns of der Meister and the Fuhrer differ.

I love your introduction of Ada, the plain little girl with a look of being always surprised. I especially like that description, the 'always surprised' look; somehow, it really accentuates her innocence, which sadly will be lost once the war catches up with her family. Which it does, all too soon. Goodness, the scene with Gottschalk and the other men was absolutely horrifying. How methodical they were in forcing the entire family to perform magic, so they could tell the Muggles apart from the magical folk. And witnessing her own father and grandfather being executed in cold blood before her very eyes must have been something very traumatic for Ada. But I see that it also awakens something cold and vicious inside her: She is going to kill Gregore Gottschalk.. There's something so clinical and matter-of-fact about that sentence that it gave me the chills. I love it!

Hahaha, Louis's section was much lighter in tone! It's a great balance in your chapter! Louis's is such a daydreamer; I'm enjoying his narration very much, especially how he perceives others around him, especially the women. It's interesting to see that he's always conscious of women and their 'woman-ness'/femininity etc., how he compares them and almost accidentally seems to be studying them.

There are so many details that Louis has mentioned about his life and his everpresent family that I can't wait to find out about, e.g. Lucretia, or James who's flatting with him, or Victoire and cousin Molly. While I love that your story is such a fascinating and engrossing mystery, I also really enjoy reading about Louis's more personal family life. I think you've got some wonderful character development.

And as for the two suspects, Albert Runcorn and Draco Malfoy...hmmm. At this point of the story, I don't know anything about them besides the fact that they're suspects. I think I'm going to withhold any conclusions for now! Of course, it's probably way too early to be guessing who the killer is...right? :P

Lovely chapter, Jenna!


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Review #19, by TidalDragon something in the way she moves

17th August 2014:
Hello again!

I noted a bit of what you meant in your detailed request about the worry of Louis being a mouthpiece as the mystery deepens. He did do a bit of that in this chapter, but as long as it doesn't continue, I wouldn't worry. It happens in every mystery (and a lot of books generally - even HP, where Hermione was often a mouthpiece as well as a character). I think the key going forward will be whether Louis continues to have some professional dimensionality as opposed to relying on his mixed up romantic life to add that.

More on the mixed up romantic life. I'm getting the sense that Louis doesn't know what he wants exactly in this area. What's a touch concerning about the bouncing interests from chapter to chapter though is that not much time is passing. I think that could make sense if Louis had been characterized from the start as being something of a "player", but it doesn't quite ring true for me from his earlier characterization that he's just moving on in his romantic interests from witch to witch quite as rapidly as he at least APPEARS to be here. Something to think about.

As far as Bones...she is really coming off for me as the consummate professional. I'm not sure if we need to get her in a more social setting or really isolate her in a tight spot and zone in on she and Louis's dynamic, but I'm just not vibing on her at the moment as much more than Louis's partner. If that's the aim, cool, but I got the sense that you have bigger dreams for her.

On the whole the plot is progressing fine though, I'm trying now to start zeroing in on who I should be considering as the potential murderer and I have an idea or three, but I'm not ready to commit to a first guess just yet. I think you're definitely keeping everything intriguing as far as the mystery goes and I'm definitely interested in seeing it continue to develop.

Also, lest I give you the wrong idea with my comments about Louis or others in this or my last review, I think you're still doing a great job internal to each chapter with characterizations. You're primarily showing, not telling about them which is crucial and you're supplementing their literal actions and interactions with setting and description in a positive way, zeroing in on things of importance with appropriate word choice.

I'd check for typos in this chapter as well when you begin editing.

See you in Chapter 6!

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Review #20, by teh tarik all romantics meet the same fate

17th August 2014:
Hello Jenna!

So...a million years ago you won the rare pair challenge and I'm FINALLY here to deliver the first of your five prize reviews! I'm so sorry for taking so long with this. *hides*

And ah, I've been meaning to read this for months now, and now that I've started, I wonder why I even waited so long. This is such a fantastic first chapter, and I love the whole concept of this. Your story drew me in from the moment it began with Ada in Nurmengard to Barty Jr's gruesome crime scene at the end.

I love your evocation and description of Nurmengard and Grindelwald's reign. It was such a frightening atmosphere you created, and the details were so dark and realistic, from the holding pen for transient prisoners to the many methods of executing innocents to those strange red ribbons. Already, there's so much mystery surrounding Ada's life, and just exactly what she did that led to her imprisonment and how everyone outside views her as a martyr of some sort.

And I love the shift to modern times as well. The contrast was so great, and so striking. I really loved reading about Louis's life as an Auror, and his relationship with Emily and the bits about his family (like Victoire and all her petitioning. I've never heard of Victoire being written this way before; hopefully she'll make an appearance in the fic later one!). Aww, Louis and Emily are so cute when they're around each other. :P They have such a lovely, relaxing relationship. I giggled a bit at the part where Emily has to wipe his nose for him.

Eugenie Bones is such an interesting character. I love that she's already made a name for herself with her past case, and yet despite her cool, professional exterior, she's still human enough to bite her nails. And I love that she and Emily are good friends because of their mums! (Sidenote: Susan Bones is a teen mum? I don't know if you'll be going into further detail with this, but it's so interesting!).

The prison of Azkaban was so chilling. In the first chapter, you already have two separate prisons, both of which are rather unpleasant. But Azkaban is fascinating and horrifying - the fact that it's sinking into the sea and that the lower levels are slowly being flooded. There must be such a strong sense of doom among the prisoners there.

Barty's corpse was quite a gruesome read! The red ribbon in his pocket was such a surprise, but I LOVED that, because it linked both sections of this chapter together. I really can't wait to read on and find out how Barty's murder is relevant to Ada, who lived (and died?) so many years ago.

Fabulous opening chapter, Jenna! Can't wait to read on. ♥


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Review #21, by TidalDragon in the midnight hour

17th August 2014:
Howdy Jenna!

So, for starters, I'm a terrible person, breaking my promise. The House Cup cropped up, plus life and trying to get out of a period I thought would be easy in my own story, but turned out to be nightmarishly difficult instead - you know, all the standard excuses - but here I am finally to start on the remaining chapters!

At any rate - on to the story! I know you asked specifically about Louis so I figured I'd start there. I think I understand what you're after going through his...history...but it felt a bit off to me. I think perhaps it's the fact that it was the lead-in to the section about Louis and therefore just kind of jumps out at you, but I guess what I mean is it just seemed like - BOOM - there it was. I think it certainly rang like thoughts a guy might think, but for it to read more natural, it might be ideal to lead with something that forces his thoughts down that line.

Though you made them a bit more literal with the scene at the seniors' home thanks to James's commentary, I definitely saw the flirting from Emily. Shame for Louis he's so clueless or closed to the idea at the moment - she seems like a great character and a great fit for him. He appears to note that she's objectively attractive (and she dressed up for him right?), but seems to undervalue the comfortable conversation and protectiveness that comes with her friendship. But apparently he has a thing for Eugenie Bones? Interesting. I had wondered why she kept popping into his thoughts earlier in the chapter...

The opening segment was very well-written with Ada. I love the portions where you address her and address Nurmengard because you do such an exceptional job describing the conditions and conveying the emotions of cold hopelessness. This was particularly clear in Ada's desensitized reaction to the deaths of the family and the young boy. Her desperately excited reaction at Ruth's return was an interesting change-up at the end of the scene and I am definitely left intrigued by "the Erik incident."

On the whole, I did think some typos crept into this chapter - and more than just here and there. I think you mentioned coming back to edit, so I'd just read through carefully and you'll find them. I don't think any were particularly pernicious to spot and we all suffer them (I'm the WORST about proofreading before I post), but I just dropped the note about them so you might take a look here in particular when you're reviewing.

Overall it continues to be great though and I can't wait to see things continue to develop through to the end! Is the latest victim Umbridge? If so, nice parallel with the Doloreuse (?) lady from Ada's era.

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Review #22, by nott theodore all dead hearts to you

17th August 2014:
Hi Jenna!

Can you explain something to me? How on earth do you manage to write such long chapters which don't seem long at all because the writing is so brilliant? Not fair, I want skills like yours! (Although I'm also perfectly happy to enjoy your lovely writing :P)

The opening of this chapter was so chilling to read. I think it's amazing that you can manage two different timelines at once in the same story, especially when I consider how closely the storyline from the 1940s is merged with the events from the second world war. The attention to detail there is really impressive and it's great to read about it. Finding out what had happened after the scene we saw in the last chapter was really interesting; it's so sad that her mother's unable to do anything because of her grief. But I think that makes it more believable that Ada would feel prompted into action, just to do something, because the adults in her family are dead or unable to act.

Even so, Ada's quite a strange character. I'm not sure that I actually like her, to be honest, because she's so cold and detached from what she's doing in this chapter. It's quite terrifying to think of someone so young killing in cold blood (although this is kind of a crime of passion too, I suppose, and revenge - at least the first murder is!), and planning it and executing it so calmly. Already here I can see that she has potential to be the Sevenfold killer in the future, although I am really intrigued about what might lead her to the next murder!

The description of the way that Ada decided to arrange the body once she'd killed Gottschalke was really intriguing, too. I'd wondered how that sort of arrangement came about, and it was interesting to read about why she chose to put the body in the shape of a cross to mirror a crucifix. The red ribbon is there as well already - it's quite chilling, and I'm wondering how on earth this is going to tie in with whatever is happening with the murders in the present day and whether it is just a copycat or something more sinister.

Once again, I loved Louis's section! He seems so real and believable, but he's also incredibly likeable as well. I found the background to Louis's family and to James's childhood really interesting as well, because it's the sort of thing that's never really focused on. I think it's great to see such original characterisations of the Weasley/Potter children, because I don't think I've ever read about them having learning difficulties or problems like that before. The details about the sort of education they got at a primary school level was great, too, since I've always wondered what magical children do to learn to read and write before they actually start at Hogwarts!

I loved the way that you wrote Ginny's character in the section when she came to see James early in the morning. The relationship between James and Louis is lovely because the dynamics that you've described seem really believable. I can just imagine Ginny arriving early in the morning (although really not that early) and being disgusted at finding James there with a girl she's never met, who he goes on to say isn't his girlfriend :P To be honest, I don't blame Harry for trying to get Louis to warn James that she was going to be coming to visit!

The development on the case was really interesting, too, especially the fact that Runcorn is still working at the Ministry and because of that he obviously knows about the fact he's being considered a suspect in the investigation. And Theodore Nott was there too, and that's making me wonder if perhaps he had something to do with it, even though he's not been mentioned yet - I'm not believing that anyone but Louis is innocent at the moment! (Although thinking about it, it could be him and he's an unreliable narrator... or maybe it could even be Eugenie Bones! No, I hope it isn't her!)

The pictures you're painting of all the different next generation characters are brilliant. They all just seem so vivid and real that they stand out to me as really original characters, especially compared to a lot of other next generation stories. I think that's really hard to do since so many stories are written about them!

The idea of Victoire being an angry sort of feminist is brilliant, especially since she's the oldest of the cousins because I can imagine her telling all of them off for making any sexist remarks and trying to get all the girls to join in her beliefs as well. The line about having raised Louis to something better made me laugh so much!

Dominique sounds great as well, and it's so funny to think of her being a hippy who's gone of with her friends and has a series of oddly named boyfriends with whom she goes around the country trying to protect the environment. I loved the way that they were talking about all the different things that she might encounter too, and the Muggles were listening in and they switched to French to avoid them eavesdropping. I like the relationship between them a lot as well, as they seem to get on well in spite of little differences. It's so interesting to see that!

This was another great chapter and I'll be reading on soon! Although I'm suspecting all sorts of people right now and I'm not going to trust any of these characters at the moment :P I'm looking forward to seeing what happens next in the mystery!

Sian :)

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Review #23, by Hori dreams filled with silver and gold

13th August 2014:
On to chapter two. I was very intrigued that the reader is brought back in time once again to reveal a different aspect of that story. I've always really enjoyed dual-narrative features in fiction and non-fiction alike, especially when there is a clear implication that the two will eventually collide, without giving away how. :) Again, I really appreciate the seamless connections you make between Muggle and Wizard history in this time period.

I have to say I appreciate the fact that you've made several references to witches being under-represented in positions of authority. You address the issue with grace and a bit of humor, never coming across as overtly political so as to distract from the story. It's also an interesting angle for Louis, who seems to not fully understand the fairer sex. :)

It was fun and interesting to see through a younger generation's eyes how the reputation and exploits of Harry have gestated in Wizard culture. I think your take on an older Harry - tired, worn out, and subdued - is a very realistic portrayal of how a person with those experiences would have aged. Louis' attitude towards him also felt very life-like. As an added note, I found it pretty amusing the way Louis seems to have a habit of comparing the different women in his life to one another. I can't decide yet if it's a character flaw or just a quirk of his.

You've nicely set up the trappings of a good mystery. Lots of potential leads and possibilities, many different motives and methods to consider. I'm looking forward to reading further!

And now for the hard part. The criticism. I want to preface this by saying that you are a fine writer. I really enjoyed the story so far, and my following point is mostly a stylistic bias that I have had and probably will continue to have for the rest of my years, so you needn't take it too seriously. In fact, I'm certain many people will disagree with me. :D But here it is: I found in some places that Louis, as the POV character and narrator, seemed to divulge as much information as possible in a short period of time whenever the reader is introduced to someone or something new. Personally, I think the story would hold up just as well without the very specific explanations and observations. At times, it felt like Louis was divulging information for the sake of the reader, rather than actually contemplating it in an organic way.

For example, a couple of times in chapter one, Louis pauses the narrative to think on, and thereby elaborate to the reader, about his Auror training and what qualities an Auror should have or what spells and methods they should be versed in, etc. I think it could be just as effective to simply let the apparent differences between Louis, who is a self-described underdog and a bit neglected in his department, and Bones, who is at a higher point in the Auror hierarchy, speak for themselves and illustrate what Aurors do, and how. I felt that Louis' internal tangents would sometimes feel like a bit of a bump in the narrative. Again, that's just me, and I acknowledge completely that some people simply prefer to read and write stories this way. I tend to be a bit of a strict minimalist in that area as much as possible, so you can understand how I would notice it.

On the other hand, there are plenty of areas where you reveal information in a much more gradual style that closely aligns with the path of the narrative, so you clearly know how to do both. Additionally, it was not as noticeable in Louis' section of the second chapter, in the beginning of which we are clearly being informed on his own thoughts about Aurors and his education. I thought this was much more effective. Again, this is a minor point, but I don't feel like my review would be very useful if I spent the whole time gushing. :)

Wow, I seem to have gone a bit overboard with the length here. In any case, keep on writing and I'll keep on reading!

Til next time!

Author's Response: Hello again! :)

I really enjoy dual narratives as well! It was something that felt right the more I worked on the story so I'm glad you found it effective here. Louis definitely doesn't understand gender divides really, especially when it comes to politics though he is somewhat aware of these tensions due to the influence of Victoire, for one. I'm very interested in gender in general and so having Louis remark on it, even if he isn't fully engaged in gender issues was interesting for me to write.

I'm glad you liked hearing about Harry, as I was worried about how he would come across! In some ways he's the hardest character to write for me, and I feel like only JKR can write him quite right.

Haha, I love how you noticed that about Louis! The comparisons between women and other characters in general are definitely something he does, while also being a factor of the mystery particularly in how the new victims relate to Ada's victims, and how the new victims relate to the murderer his/herself. So it's neat how you picked up on that! I also wanted to show Louis as being a little prone to generalizing, and he can be superficial sometimes. He definitely needed to have lots of flaws to be interesting enough to write about.

Thank you for all the critical feedback, it's very helpful! I think you're absolutely right and it's something I've been trying to correct about my writing for a while. I tend to write way too much and focus in on every detail, while writing minimally is very difficult! I do think that in the later chapters, there's an improvement from the first chapter in the details and tangents (I hope :P). The feedback is very helpful as I don't always realize when I'm doing this myself. :P

Thanks so much for the wonderful, thoughtful reviews! :D

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Review #24, by Hori all romantics meet the same fate

13th August 2014:
Greetings! Hori here with your August Review Exchange! I'll also be leaving a review for chapter two momentarily, and it's best to just take them as one long review as I wrote this all at once. I couldn't help myself. :D

I have to admit that I was a little overwhelmed at first when I saw the sheer number of pieces you've written. I do believe I'll be going back and reading them as well when I have more time and no deadline! I also wanted to read something of yours with multiple chapters instead of a one-shot, though, and in my browsing of your catalog I found this one. ;)

I thought it oddly appropriate that I review this story almost as soon as I started reading it, as I myself only have the one story in progress for you to read, and I was struck instantly by the coincidental similarities between our two works in the very first chapters. Prisons, darkness, death, mystery, and all that lovely stuff. :D

From the get-go, let me say that I really enjoy any attempt by writers of HPFF to draw links to Muggle history, and creatively weave real events and people into the Wizarding world. I was instantly intrigued by your incorporation of World War II and Nazi Germany, especially considering that Hitler and his ilk actually were interested in magic and the occult on varying levels. A global event like a World War could not help but have some sort of effect on or connection within the Wizarding community.

The first chapter as a whole was very enjoyable to read. As I said before, it's a fun sort of coincidence that both this story and mine are attempts to flesh out things like magical law enforcement, the inner workings of Wizarding justice, and places like Azkaban. It's a bit like two people drawing the same still-life, but not looking at each other's work until they're both done. It's fascinating to see where we've overlapped, and where we have diverted.

I really enjoyed your characterization of each character. From Louis' persistent cold and slightly unkempt, unsure mannerisms to something as simple as Bones' repeatedly adjusting or moving her glasses. You're obviously well-versed in the art of making a character quickly solidify in a reader's mind by giving them habits and quirks that help make them real.

Your descriptions of Azkaban were probably my high point for this chapter. I know I'm a bit biased because I certainly enjoyed writing about it myself, but your rendition is a really spot-on blend of atmosphere and observations from Louis. I thought that Louis considering Hagrid's size was in particular a very clever device for giving a reader a sense of how small the cells are without literally saying, "The cells are X feet wide and X feet deep."

The description of the murder scene was also wonderfully macabre, and you showed Louis' lack of extended field experience nicely.

The reveal of the red ribbon was a great little tidbit for the reader that finally draws a link between the two timelines, which had been seemingly unconnected. It was subtle and effective. The identity of the murder victim was also a great way to end things. Unlike some other next-gens I've read, you're striking a very nice balance between referencing the canon of the books so that the reader has the proper grasp of the world you're building, while also giving the new generation of characters room to breathe and develop without constant cameos or repetitive allusions to the story and personalities we already know.

to be continued.

Author's Response: Hi Hori! Wow I'm so sorry for taking this long to reply to your amazing, thoughtful review. It was so kind of you and each comment really means so much to me!

I'm so glad you picked this story to read, and so funny how it has some similarities with the opening chapter of your story too. Hey, stories about death and prisons and darkness are the best stories, right? :P

I'm glad you liked the incorporation of WWII history. It really fascinated me how it intersected well with the ideas I had for the mystery. Also, I had recently been learning more about WWII and the Holocaust so it was interesting to tie in some of those stories and facts into a fictional world and integrate it with HP. I agree, huge world events like WWII would have some effect and it felt logical that Grindelwald might be a faction of that.

It is really neat to see how our stories are similar but different. I love your description of the still life - that's such a cool way of describing fan fiction in general too.

I'm so glad you like the characterizations. I was a little worried about the first chapter because I was still getting into the characters so I'm glad you liked it. It's great seeing all the little details you picked up on, and I'm so glad you noticed Hagrid's size as I thought it would be an interesting way to process Louis' reactions.

Thank you for your comments about this being unique as a next generation story! I'm glad you found it builds off canon but still stands on its own, that's very helpful and lovely to hear. :)

A very belated thank you for the amazing review! Onto the next one! :)

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Review #25, by nott theodore dreams filled with silver and gold

11th August 2014:
Hi Jenna! Ah, I've been so bad recently trying to keep up with your stories, but this one's been playing on my mind since I read the first chapter and even though you finished it ages ago, I have to come and read the rest of it now I actually have chance to!

I really love the way that we're getting to learn about the two different time periods which are so important to this story, although every single part I learn about the past and Ada just makes me even more intrigued about what on earth is going on in the present with this strange killer, which of course is a good thing (for you, but frustrating for me :P). First of all, I absolutely love the name of the magical place in Germany! It's such a clever name and I love imagining that it's started off as a village and grown to be a city, but never changed the name (I'm possibly getting a little too excited about the use of foreign languages in this story. Maybe). I've never really thought about the existence of heavily populated magical towns and villages in other countries before, but it makes a lot of sense that they'd exist, and it's an interesting place to act as the base of sorts for Grindelwald.

The way that the Muggle history is merged with the magical history in that first section is just fantastic. I love the quality of your writing and stories; every time I read something you've written, I can tell that you've put so much thought and planning into the tiny details and it's really impressive. And of course, makes your stories even more amazing ♥

The description of the takeover of Grindelwald and the way that it all meshes with the second world war is so clever, but also incredibly chilling. The inclusion of 'Grindelwald's sign' was a great touch to make it seem more authentic, as was the link to death, and the rumour that he'd somehow mastered it; I wouldn't be surprised if it was a rumour he spread himself, once he was in possession of the Elder Wand. And 'Die Guten'! Ugh, that's such an horrific name for people who do what they do - at least the Death Eaters were kind of honest in what they were trying to do with their name!

I loved the description of Ada's family and the way that her father and her grandfather had both grown to accept the magic that's not only in their family but also all around them in the city. The description of Ada was really intriguing, too! It's great to see a character who's quite non-descript in appearance, and I imagine that's going to make things easier for her in the future when she goes on to commit the murders. The link to the red ribbons already there was brilliant to see, though - it's like a trademark of hers even when she's this young, which is actually kind of scary.

The scene when Die Guten came to Ada's house was just so upsetting to read but really well written. I love the way that you didn't go into too much detail about what happened to them but left us in no doubt of what the outcome was at the same time. It's kind of scary to think that a child that young can resolve to kill someone in revenge and then go on to commit other murders as well, but at the same time it's very believable.

The switch to Louis and his life in the twenty-first century was really well done and I like getting to learn about both parts of the story at once. Once again, the detail that you've built into Louis's history is fantastic, especially with the way that there's all the background to the way that you can apply to be an Auror and all of the training that's involved. I found it really interesting that he'd actually considered going to join the French Ministry but his mother thought his French wasn't good enough; it makes a lot of sense to me that it would be difficult to keep it up without practising, rather than him just being easily fluent - I know a lot of people who've faced the same situation. And I think it's great to read from the perspective of a character who, despite being a Ravenclaw and a Weasley, isn't a massive overachiever and has actually struggled to get to where he is right now.

I think it's really hard to write guys in first person, so you did a great job of capturing the way that Louis thinks, especially when it came to things like Eugenie Bones's appearance and his relationship with Lucretia, as well as his conversation with Emily at the end.

The developments on the case are really intriguing! It's interesting to see that they have suspects now, and I liked Harry's amusement when they mentioned that Runcorn was one of them. I'm not sure about Draco - obviously they've got good reason to suspect him but it feels a bit too obvious at the moment for it to have been him, and I can't imagine that he'd go into Azkaban and kill one of the prisoners there when he'd done so much to make sure that he stayed out of it. I'm also really curious about this cloaked figure that the prison guard supposedly saw, and whether they're actually connected to the murder or not...

So many questions right now which is obviously great but kind of infuriating to read as well, because I just can't work out where this is going at the moment! There are so many possibilities and you've got such a great mystery set up already!

Sian :)

Author's Response: Hey Sian!! :D Ahh this review is so LONG and AWESOME I have no idea how to answer properly (as usual). :P

It really means so much to me that you've been reading this story and enjoying it because it really is one of my favourites and its so fun hearing people's theories.

it's funny because I didn't realize until I was writing the second or third chapter that I wanted to have Ada's POV in every single one. But now that it's all written I can't imagine having done it any other way as it's just as much Ada's story as Louis' in a way.

I'm glad you liked the idea of there being a separate town for wizards in Germany. The more I thought about it the more it made the story make sense as it kept the magical conflict more separate from the Muggle historical one and gave me a lot more freedom. Aw, thank you!! I'm so glad you like the details and find it authentic. it really means a lot! ♥

I feel like Grindelwald would definitely spread rumours about his own powers to make him seem more powerful and otherworldly. It was really interesting making him into this figure for Ada and how his existence really overshadows her whole life and those of the other people around her. It was really interesting figuring out how Grindelwald's reign intersected with Hitler as JKR didn't really leave us with much of an explanation.

Ada began as a really ordinary, typical girl whose extraordinary deeds get unlocked as a result of her trauma - kind of like Harry in a way. I felt like with the red ribbons they both make her distinct and hint that she's a young girl, but also can be kind of universal in a way as so many young girls would have had red ribbons, so almost as if they could relate to her, or she's more than a simple individual. In some ways, Ada being young shows how she might not fully realize the consequences of her actions while also be really motivated.

I'm glad you're liking Louis as well! He really is one of my favourite MCs that I've written and I miss him sometimes, haha. I felt that with French, Louis would be alright in conversational, everyday French from speaking it at home, but not perform very well in official situations or academically. I know that I personally speak French well but struggle with all the grammar and such so it was definitely realistic to write him that way. :P I actually find that characters who aren't naturally intelligent and do have to work quite hard to get ahead are more interesting to write because of their challenges, and Louis being a bit of an underdog made him more relatable for me. I'm so glad you found him realistic as a boy as well!

I feel like all the suspects right now are sort of the obvious choices, especially considering that Crouch was murdered so they aren't quite sure about the motive. I agree about Draco, but he does look guilty right now and he is a bit sneaky so it made sense that they would have at least an eye on him.

Hehe, I'm so glad about the questions! It's so fun to see people try and put the pieces together and decide on suspects. :P Thanks so much for the really wonderful review, Sian! ♥

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