Bianca! I read this chapter when you first wrote it, and I still crack a smile every time I think of it.
After the mixed angst of the first two chapters (who knew we’d all make our mandrakes so emotive), your mandrake’s attitude is the perfect end to this story. Your mandrake is the perfect balance of accepting what happens to it, while at the same time having So Many Opinions. I think this was kind of the perfect balance for a mandrake - they really have to deal with a lot of unpleasant things in life and have no control over it, but they are aware, and I am sure they have a lot of sass about it all XD And most of all, this was hilarious.
I love this so much!
I read this when you first wrote it, and now I’m here forever later for a review XD
When people say they’re going to read this story I say it’s a rollercoaster, and I think this chapter is the most roller coaster of all.
You create such a variety of emotions here - things start out sweet and cute as we explore what kind of bonds mandrakes can have to their tenders, mirroring the attachment and rebellion of youth, and just as we think that can’t get any cuter, you ruin everything and scar us for life.
I think you did a great job of showing the world from the mandrake’s point of view - there’s a lot they don’t understand about the world and people in it, and you have them make the best sense of it as they can, while making everything clear to the reader.
I know this whole story was ridiculous, but you did a really fabulous job with it.
"the most roller coaster of all"
^hard to argue with your point here haha. Although I think "scar us for life" might be a /little/ harsh? bahaha
Yeah, it's brutal. I admit it. I'm glad you think it's brutal in a good way?
Thanks for the review, dear!
Just stoppimg by to leave some love on this amazing collab on Mandrakes. I'm still amazed that you guys came up with this idea. I know I'd never have thought to write about angsty mandrakes. :)
This is such a clever snippet to write. I'd never thought about the war from the perspective of the mandrakes as they're tossed from the balconies in defense of Hogwarts. It really is rather rude considering no one actually asked them if they'd like to participate.
Speaking of which, how exactly does that work. Mandrakes are like little humans mixed with a plant. Do they have any sort of rights or are wizards just free to kill them at will? Seems pretty barbaric, doesn't it?
Anyway, I agree with the mandrake. This was rather rude.
Aww this is sort of heartbreaking. Who know that Mandrakes had mommy issues? I could certainly understand why though.
It's so sweet that the little mandrake is so intent on finding it's mother that it mistakes a student for her. I guess being as the student is the only person it's ever seen....it makes sense.
I love the angsty bit from the mandrake as it realizes it's mother isn't coming for it. Such a teenage thing to do to decide to party with the mandrake next door. This gave me a good chuckle.
I imagine the end of the mandrake must've been quite distressing. I can't imagine thinking your own mom and gradma were trying to kill you. That makes me a bit sad.
Thank you for the thoughtful review, despite the irreverence of the chapter.
This is such a clever and unique piece. I'd never have thought to write from the perspective of a mandrake, but particularly an angsty teenage mandrake who hates dirt. How do you come up with these ideas?
I love how no matter how hard he tries to escape the dirt, it's impossible. Even if he manages to break free from his confines, he still has to walk on dirt. It's completely unavoidable. Oh the woes of being a mandrake.
And can I just say you've seriously nailed teenage angst so well. Like you've got the voice down to perfection.
Great work as always!
lol, thank you Kaitlin!
This story feels just as funny to me to have on my AP as it does to other people when they find it XD
lol we never would have thoughtto write from the perspective of a mandrake either - it was a prompt for one of the events in the HC maze last summer, and literally nobody wanted to be the one to write it, so in Hufflepuff fashion we split the word count up between the three of us XD
Hehe, I'm glad you enjoyed the humor and angst I put into this! XD
This mandrake is so indignant. I think that rather than being a teenage mandrake like the previous two chapters, this one is an old mandrake. I imagine that it often yells at the the young mandrakes to get off of its lawn. Er... pot. And I love that in this collab you've had mandrakes of different ages and you haven't even had to say which age they are, it's just evident in the way they act. You make them so human, which makes the end so much more difficult! Poor mandrake, having absolutely no idea what is happening and just being annoyed that it's cold outside, when they are suddenly flung off a balcony at someone's masked face. The mandrakes have literally nothing to do with this war and they're just used as ammunition. It's very sad. I mean... they helped win the battle, but would it really have mattered to them?
All three of these fics have made me have a lot more thoughts about mandrakes than I ever thought I would. Great writing.
Oh no, this one is so sad! Poor mandrake! I didn't expect this story to take such a dark turn. You're making me question everything I ever thought about mandrakes.
It was kind of sweet in the beginning with the young mandrake just wanting to see its mother, and seeing someone (Hermione? literally just based on the fact that she's young and has brown bushy hair) during repotting and thinking that must be her. Mandrakes must be so lonely when theyr'e kept in separate pots like that, I wonder how they live in the wild? /tangent. I'm glad teenage mandrake was at least able to move into the pot next door for the party and I hope they didn't re-pot home while drunk. :P
And then Sprout at the end - of course she's the one who loves the mandrake very much. Once you mentioned that the other lady (Pomfrey, I assume) had a knife I realized what was going on and aishdfkjadk is it even ethical to use mandrakes in potions? Is there an MCLU (magical civil liberties union)? Would they even cover mandrakes? Omg, I have all these feelings and thoughts. I mean, I know that the mandrakes are being used to un-petrify people, which is important. But... ahh. No one ever considered the fact that they have thoughts and this is distressing
If that first person was Hermione, though - how ironic is it that at the end, the mandrake dies to save Mother?
I'm sorry for inspiring conflicted mandrake feelings! Thanks for this swell review <33
Um. I love this. Hahahaha, I'm struggling to come up with words because all I have is laughter. Who knew Mandrakes had so much personality! This Mandrake is so moody and negative - and who wouldn't be if you're a laboratory tool at the whims of students, half of whom don't even care about Herbology, who are constantly repotting you in different dirt, when you're bored of dirt. I'd also never really considered the aspect of privacy/bodily autonomy because mandrakes are plants, but they do have a body, so... haha yeah, I enjoyed that you added that in there.
This story has totally changed my perception of mandrakes. Also, it's just really funny!
I also very much enjoy that there is a mandrake called Merg.
lol I love you.
Hello again, lovely B!
I know that this collaboration was written for one of the maze tasks, but I've really enjoyed reading these stories about mandrakes - and that's a sentence I never thought I'd say! I think the way that you've each chosen to focus on a different aspect of the mandrakes and the times that we see them in the books is really clever, but I'm even more impressed by the way that you've matched up each of the chapters. Even though each of you has distinct writing styles, you've married up the voice of the mandrakes really well through the three chapters here.
Poor mandrakes, just happily sleeping, all warm and snug in their pots, and then suddenly they're picked up and jolted all around and called to defend Hogwarts school and all its students, when they have no idea what on earth is going on.
It kind of offers some perspective on the battle for the castle - as we read it, there's a lot of drama and a real sense of how desperate this fight is, and any form of defence must be used. But the mandrakes have no idea what's going on and just think it's rude that they've been woken up, that they're being tossed around and then thrown into the cold night sky. Oh, to be a mandrake :P
I really liked the indignant tone of this, and the way that you managed to characterise the mandrake here, and the frustration and irritation at being woken up from their cosy sleep. I don't really blame them for being so annoyed :P
This collaboration is so interesting, and I love the way that you're exploring different aspects of mandrakes' lives and this was both kind of cute and upsetting. This story and Sam's have made me think really differently about mandrakes - like, the fact that they're sentient plants surely makes them different to non-sentient plants? Some sentient creatures have rights in the wizarding world, so are there people campaigning for rights to be given to mandrakes and other sentient plants?
(Oops, that's a slight tangent - but still, really interesting. This story really made me think!)
It was actually really sweet - I kind of smiled at the way that the mandrakes thought that the lady repotting them (Sprout?) was their mother. I guess if they're plants, they wouldn't know where they came from, especially if they spent their lives in darkness and soil. The sense of excitement on seeing their "mother" was really cute, and then the disappointment of being plunged back into the darkness was really sad. I felt so sorry for them!
Especially the ending - I thought the way you styled the broken sentences worked really well through this story, and particularly at the end of the story when they're about to be cut up, I guess to make potions. I know it's important to make those potions and bring back all the people who were petrified, but I felt sorry for the mandrakes who had to suffer and die for it reading this!
Could vegans eat mandrakes? Or venus flytraps? =P
Thanks for leaving such a nice review on this silly story! <3
Since I didn't have time to get around to reading and reviewing some of these collabs during the maze, I thought I'd stop by now :D
This was such an original story! I know that I've read pieces before from the perspective of an animal, or other sentient creature like a house elf - I've even read from the point of view of a building, but for some reason I've never considered reading or writing anything that's told from the perspective of a plant. (A vegetable?) This was really fun to read, and I liked the way you managed to write so much in so few words.
Somehow you've actually made me feel kind of sorry for a mandrake? I don't think that I ever thought I'd write that sentence, but I felt sorry for the mandrake here in this story. It really is a pretty monotonous life for a mandrake - or any sort of plant, I suppose - isn't it? Imagine being a plant and hating the idea of dirt. I loved the way that you took the information we get in the books about the way that mandrakes behave at different ages (like the baby/toddler/adolescent phases) and then translated that into the story. The mandrake's voice here came through really strongly and reminded me of a petulant teenager who doesn't want to go along with the boring life that everyone around them seems satisfied with. It's kind of sad that the mandrake probably won't get to achieve their dream - especially if they're around at the same time as the Basilisk...
lol I had never considered writing from the perspective of a mandrake either and then the HC made me XD
I was mostly going for lauging at the mandrake with this, but it makes sense to feel bad for him - I certainly wouldn't envy that life!
We don't know much about the personalities and sentience levels of mandrakes, but I thought it was fun to translate our stereotypes of age to an adolescent mandrake =)
This whole thing is so creative! I LOVE how you've worked the Battle of Hogwarts into a story that's from a crotchety little mandrake's perspective. I liked the details of the slugs--a major problem for the flora of Hogwarts--as well as the idea that there is a social scene in the greenhouses. And while it was so clever to use the plant as a weapon, I do feel for this mandrake, who 100% did not sign up to be uprooted and exposed to the cold Scottish night air in the middle of a battle, poor thing. As if it weren't bad enough that I needed to be worried about all the witches and wizards and house elves, etc., during these battles. Now I've got to be worried about the poor plantlife!
Well, at least this one has a chance at surviving. That's more than one can say of his sister from chapter two...
Really unique work, all of you. This is a premise I've never seen before, and it definitely put a smile on my face (when I wasn't horrified by the abuse of innocent Mandrakes. Where is Hermione Grainger?? She really needs to get on top of SPAMM - the Society for the Protection Against Mandrake Mistreatment). Very original! I enjoyed it!
Oh my gosh this got DARK! I did not see that coming. Here I am like "Oh, what a cute concept, the mandrakes are like little ducklings, imprinting on their gardeners and thinking they're their mothers! Awww, teen angst. Poor little thing, it feels so abandoned. Aww, she's still happy to see her mommy..."
And THEN they...what?? Chopped her up to make potions out of?? I mean, I guess that mandrake potion is important; it saved all the petrified people from being living statues in Harry's second year. It saved Hermione! But I never thought of them being sentient beings. Oh, ick. Do you think you can take mandrake potion if you're a vegetarian? Are their magical people who refuse the use of sentient plants? I feel like I came here to have a good time and I'm feeling so attacked by questions of ethics in potionry right now ;)
Haha! That was very creative...if mildly disturbing. Really good job!
PENNY! I am so excited to see you around! *HUGS*
This collection was written for a house cup challenge - definitely not my usual topic! haha! Your review is just as fuuny and lovely as you - although I am sorry for giving you icky feels about mandrake potions. I can imagine someone like Luna refusing to use it, maybe. That's an interesting idea that I hadn't thought about.
Anyways I'm really glad you stopped by and thank you for reviewing!
Hello hello! I saw that you guys didn't have any reviews on this, so I thought I'd stop by. So this is like, a series about mandrakes that you did as a collaboration? That is such a unique idea!
Poor little mandrake--I wouldn't want to be stuck in the dirt, either. Of course, considering that mandrakes can kill you with a scream, I wouldn't want them running about, either! I wonder if this one's in its teen angst phase. I like the idea that there's some kind of hippie herbology students in there having philosophical conversations about the nature of dirt that are just boring the poor plantlife to death.
The only potential CC I have is that it might be funny if instead of "cleansed the dirt from my skin" you said "cleanse the dirt from my bark" since they are kind of tree-like. But that's really just a stylistic choice, up to opinion.
I'm intrigued by this s concept--it's definitely one of the more unique ideas I've come across! I'm going to have to read the next chapter. I'm definitely curious about where you guys are taking this. Good job!
I think it’s super sweet that you left comments on every chapter of this funny little story, and I’m sorry I didn’t respond sooner. I don’t remember if you were participating in the maze and knew the background for this story, but essentially there was an event for which we had to write a certain amount of words from the perspective of a mandrake. It was a very unique prompt but nobody was super eager to take it or try to write so many words about it, so three of us divided it among ourselves, and ended up having a blast with it!
Because this was a funny prompt, I wanted to approach it in a kind of ironic and unexpected way, and came up with this. I figure if mandrakes have personalities and age, they’ve gotta have moody teenagers, right? We normally only hear about mature and immature mandrakes, so I couldn’t resist poking at the middle there XD
Oh, that’s a good point about bark vs. skin. I hadn’t considered that. Of course this story isn’t too firmly rooted in reality, even by fantasy’s terms. For example, I know mandrake is a root,not a vegetable, but I just couldn’t resist the word play there =P
Thanks for your feedback - I’m glad you enjoyed it!