Hey there, here for CTF!
The first line makes me excited to read this, hufflepuff represent!
I spoke too soon, but I don't think it's bad that you put happy moments in, I think it probably does make it seem more realistic, although I don't actually have any experience what that either so my comments are purely just what I think it would be like.
It was an interesting fic to read though, especially since you didn't specifically state who it was. As bad as it sounds I think you've made it fit the house traits quite well, even if that wasn't your intention. Because hufflepuffs are normally seen as the nice so they might not expect that type of behaviour from a hufflepuff, especially onlookers.
I think you've done a good job of potraying the relationship though, and how it's seen from other people's point of view. Everyone envies her, and everyone views him as the nice guy. Even when the don't, and they see his charade slipping a little such as him lurking outside the common room, she defends him so they still don't suspect anything.
This was an interesting fic, and I think you've handeld the topic really well.
Author's Response: Hello!!
Thank you so much for your sweet review! It's such a nice surprise!
Hahaha the "I spoke too soon" cracks me up every time. I love Hufflepuffs very dearly, this character doesn't represent well.
You're right, I put in the happier moments to show realistically how abusive relationships can seem nice and normal from the outside, and especially to those involved in the beginning.
Thank you so much for your lovely review!
Hufflepuff CtF Review
And I didn’t even realize this story was going to be Hufflepuff centric - Heyo!
But yeah, I see it certainly isn’t a happy story. On another night I probably would have given that content warning a hard pass, but this is a review event, so sacrifices must be made for the sake of short stories.
I was afraid that I’d inevitably find them cute in the beginning, but thankfully that didn’t last last the sentence in which they were first years. From that point on the story has a sickeningly suspenseful vibe (at least for me).
You did a really good job showing the nature and development of abuse here. How it starts with cute things, but there’s something a little too intense about those things. How the relationship sometimes seems too perfect, so much so that you could never imagine wanting to lose it. How you hide the flaws from your friends so that they don’t stop seeing the perfect sides. How even the creepiest things have a sincere explanation that can be twisted to seem romantic. Hw in all of this you get lost and don’t know right from wrong.
This makes me wish you didn’t know this so well to be able to write it so well. But it is very good and very well done, both as far as the depiction of abuse goes and the writing style.
Thank you for distracting me from horrible things with pretty words like “spice so intense, the bite filled her whole body, she was sure she was choking on it.” Horrible but beautiful. Which really does tie into the relationship quite well.
Very clever way of linking the first line back to the first!
I do think I missed the significance of the title “Blue” though. Which may be in part because I tried to skim to not get too sucked into the dark nature of this story.
I think this is my first time reading your work, and based on this I am very interested in reading more! Hopefully it’s not all as dark as this.
Very well done.
Author's Response: Hey there!
Sorry for the late response but thank you so much for the thoughtful review!! This is so sweet!
Part of me is kind of glad it had a suspenseful vibe, that is in a way what I was going for. And I'm especially glad that you liked the progression of their relationship and how you could see the underlying abuse, that was really important to me.
You're so so sweet and I'm really glad you liked it and thought this story was well-written.
The "Blue" ties into bruises, as well as the colour of her robes, and how they match.
Please do feel free to read more! I promise this one is far outside my much happier norm.
Thanks so much!
This was a really good story :D
I like how the relationship didn't start off bad but it eventually got worse until the person felt like it was too late, I think you portrayed it really well. I'm slightly disappointed that I never found out the people's names-but my first thought was that you were writing about Cho/Cedric (I was just judging by the houses)-but I think it's nice to leave some of the imagination up to the readers :)
Anyway, I really enjoyed reading this, I just wished it was longer! I hope you write more like these in the future :)
Author's Response: Hello!
I am so glad you liked it! I was trying to make it real, so I'm glad you think I portrayed it well.
I'm not sure why I never gave them names. I think mostly it was just an artistic choice, but I think it also makes them more relatable. But I wasn't necessarily writing them as Cho and Cedric, though those houses are correct!
Thanks so much for the lovely review!
I genuinely was not expecting that. I am actually mindblown.
Um, hello! It's me, Plums, from ff.net here to review your entry for The First Line challenge. The whole point of the challenge was to see where people went with things, how their minds worked were inspired in different ways from the same collection of words. I think I can safely say you were inspired in a much different way than I would've been! When I thought up that sentence, a lighthearted Puff pride sort of fic came to mind. This is pretty much the opposite.
But it is glorious.
The portrayal of an abusive relationship here is incredibly accurate (from what I've read - thankfully, I have had the good fortune to not have experienced one) and I think that the juxtaposition of the good times with the bad is actually what made it so. In my opinion, it showed exactly how the relationship don't actually start off abusive, so that by the time it does become so, the victim is already convinced they're in love and the situation is so incredibly complicated. The way you worked your way up to it was absolutely phenomenal. I could feel the tension as he moved further away from being just a handsome face to someone who wanted complete control.
I think the part which hits me the most is how he tells her he only does it because he loves her. The earlier behaviour can be dismissed by people as just typical boyfriend behaviour - "of course he doesn't want other people to see your legs, he's your boyfriend!" - but it's actually sickening how someone could try to justify their actions like this. And what's all the more heartbreaking is that the other person believes it.
This was a powerful one shot and entry. Honestly, I am mindblown by how you've transformed that one little line into something so much more.
Author's Response: Hello! So sorry for taking so long to see these messages before. I am so so flattered that you really liked my story! I can totally see how my take on your line was unexpected, but I'm glad you liked the different direction I took it in!
Yeah, everything about abusive relationships is really horrible. I did try to portray that, and in the most accurate and realistic way I could.
Thank you so much again!
Wow. All I have to say. Very nice job. xx
Author's Response: Awww thank you so much! I am so glad you enjoyed it! Thank you so much for leaving a review, it means a lot!