I feel so, so terrible for poor Rose. She plans, she plots, she works so hard to make this a wonderful perfect valentines day AND THEN HE CAN'T EVEN BE BOTHERED TO SHOW UP.
I have to confess I'm going back and reviewing this after I finished the entire story so as you might guess I'm feeling a bit less than generous with the "maybe he got stuck at work" excuse.
I love how you slowly but surely build up the suspense throughout the story. We start with the smug smile and exhaustion. The ten minutes before he's meant to be home and her sheer giddyness, and then you slowly feel her mood deteriorate with each passing moment.
The "five minutes to go" and so on countered by the "five minutes late" and so on added a nice symmetry to the story that I really appreciate. It's a really nice touch.
This was fabulous (though I expected nothing less from you!)
I was perusing my review thread and realized that I never did stop by and so I'm here to correct that issue (and hopefully I'll pop over to another story today or tomorrow just to further make it up to you!)
SO I read through the first half and I always like everything Brax writes so that's a good start.
The first thing that really, really stands out to me is your descriptive writing and how it relates to imagery. That entire first paragraph might be one of the loveliest things I've ever read.
You maintain all of that description throughout the story and it really makes this seem so developed and well tended. I read a lot of stories that start heavy on description and once the dialogue is introduced they never bother to paint the scene again. I'm so pleased you've kept it so well.
I totally know how Rose is feeling that pleasant flood of relief that he's finally there but then the inferno of rage that comes along with waiting for so long. I lived this for months. AND HE'S INTOXICATED. Ugh. Bless her.
She whipped out the full name so you know he's in trouble!
I really feel her pain and I would low key throat punch him for being out with Diana. He's so skeevy. I hate her guts too and I don't even know her. BAM! Yes, kick him out! He's vile!
I feel like you really gave us a vivd fight scene to the point that I think I was honestly a bit worked up by the end of all of it. Like slightly full blown angry on her behalf.
THIS WAS SO GOOD. Like really good. I've read a few of your other stories of HPFF throughout the years and they were good, but I really, really, really liked this!
I noticed the low rating this received and thought it was hinky so I investigated. I'm not going to directly address my thoughts about it, but I will say that this story was definitely worth all five stars and I'll go back and review the other chapter to mitigate it.
I'm devastated. Completely and utterly devasted that I was literally pouting at the screen the whole time.
You know what's the saddest thing about this? There wasn't even a very a good reason. I was hoping something terrible had happened to him, but no, it wasn't even something acceptable like being stuck at work or having forgotten (I'm scatter-minded and I think forgetfulness should sometimes be excused). But no. He was out getting drunk with another woman. And Valentine's is blekh, whatever, but anniversaries are not. They're milestones, and even if you aren't going to do something special for them, you should at least be there to acknowledge how far you have gotten.
But then again, what's the point if the passion is no longer there? And I feel this is where I stop being overly frustrated with Scorpius because we don't really get to see what led him to do this. This was all from Rose's point of view, all her narrative. And we don't even get to see what the relationship was like before this point. It doesn't excuse what he did, not one bit, but... Would it have been better if he had showed up and then maybe want to break up a few days later? I don't know. And what made me think about this is how he didn't fight for her at all in the end or try to defend himself or anything. For me, it signified that perhaps he wasn't feeling it anymore. And what's there to celebrate with your partner if that's the state you're in?
I noticed you said this was for a challenge and I thought you used the keys marvellously and it was such a strong moment for Rose. She was devastated but she knew how she deserved to be treated and she knew when to withdraw. Seeing her ask for that despite herself, especially when in the previous chapter we saw how excited she was to celebrate how long they've been together and how she was still very much in love with him... It was just a heartbreaking moment and I wanted to pull her into a hug.
Now that I've re-read this 'review', I realised it's an analysis more than it is a review, but that's what was going on in my head while I was reading, so yeah. But I do thoroughly enjoy your writing, and I look forward to reading more of your stuff soon.
Hey there! I'm here for the BvB.
I was so excited to see a Rose/Scorpius story on your AP because they're one of my absolute favourite NextGen pairings. But now I'm concerned because this chapter can't possibly lead up to anything good for these two.
I can't stress enough on how amazing your descriptions are. They are so captivating, especially in this story where showing all the details was necessary to demonstrate how much thought and effort Rose had put into this. You set the mood perfectly and you took me to that room, and it felt like a movie with a camera scanning the room and then zooming in on individual, glistening items. It was breathtaking.
The structure of it was quite brilliant as well, between the count down and and the anticipation of Scorpius's arrival, then the count up and the building up frustration. The dichotomy was just stellar.
I also, of course, admired that you took the time to describe how long it had taken Rose to look perfect for this night. No one wakes up just like this, and it was nice to see that addressed. I feel it's a struggle that just women can understand and relate to. It also gave way for you to use that in the opposite direction where she started to get irritated from the painful underwear and so on.
Although there were many beautifully crafted sentences in this chapter, this one caught my eye more than all others:
"Never had floating candles seemed so solemn; their tear-drop flames crying tendrils of smoke into the air."
It was so poignant and expressive and added to the melancholy mood. It's also just a really creative way to describe candles.
I'm kinda nervous about reading the next chapter, but I defnitely I'm going to do it. I'd like to know what was so important that Scorpius abandoned Rose and the grand night she prepared. Wonderful, wonderful work. I'm already in love with the way you write. That's all I have to say.
Hello, Angie! Here with your review! :D
So I only read chapter 2 of this, partially because I was curious to see if it stood on its own, and it really did. I have no idea (well, I have some idea) what happened in chapter 1, but I really felt for Rose. The poor thing has the whole night planned and Scorpius doesn't even show up? And he's drunk and spent the night with another girl? Yeah, I'd be upset, too.
I love your descriptions. You set the scene so well and I loved your use of rose petals and the keys.
You asked about characterization, and I think you handled Rose very well. I was slightly disappointed that Scorpius didn't fight much for her, unless it was more of a thing where he felt so defeated and ashamed that he didn't know if he should - that I could understand. I know I didn't read chapter 1, so you can ignore me if this is covered there, but how long were they together? My impression was that they were living together for a while now, but a line or two about the length of their relationship might put better context.
Overall the plot was well done. I love a good, angsty breakup, and this definitely fell right into that.
Thanks a lot for your lovely review! I am glad you liked the descriptions and that you think I did Rose's characterisation well. They have been together for a few years but here he has basically lost interest in the relationship - though it's mentioned in the first chapter. And yay that it stood on its own!
So, I have to say that I hate Valentine's Day, I do. My beta pointed this out to me ... on Valentine's Day. She ain't no romantic. I am not a romantic. I read the other piece to get an idea of what this was because you can't just read half a story and loose what's going on. I'm the fat hating Valentine's Day kid. I want chocolates, not half eaten, so you can decipher the flavors chocolates.
The writing of the previous chapter was really good. And I know only one of you can respond to this review so I'll just say what I need to say. As I am not a romantic, I thought of the romance was way, way over done by this girl, Rose. Rose sounded a little desperate and it was so romantic that I was like, hoping that Scorpius would at least be like a Cupid so that he wouldn't need to feel the need to run from the room. The writing in that piece is phenomenal. The timing is a really effective device that writer put in.
Romance is a different idea to both a man and a woman, and I'm not talking about physical love. Everyone, absolutely everyone, has a different idea of what love is and it's not normally those stereotypes that matter on Valentine's Day. Whilst I say I am not a romantic, I do know that love cannot be crammed into a commercial holiday and that love, true love, like trust, is built over the years. There are different levels of love. There are different definitions of love.
I like that the girl was caught unawares. You did that really well here. Because I kept thinking that I hope that Scorpius would not show up. You did that really well here. Because I kept thinking that I hope that Scorpius would not show up. The writing of this piece is done really well with the detail for both you and the other writer. I like that Rose kind of defends herself and that you illustrated something that is so pedestrian. This happens all the time.
My only complaint, and it's not really complain so much as an observation, is the cursing in this piece there's not really add anything to the story. You can illustrate anger without using those things. Do I use cursewords my own writing? Yeah sometimes. A curse word should not be put in simply because it's a curse word.it should have meaning; it should convey something.do I get that Rose is angry because old boy just skipped out on her for another girl? Yeah, who wouldn't be? Maybe they're not just inserted here. Some curse words, and I hope you keep this in mind, carry much more weight than others. Words themselves are very powerful.
I am probably batting for the wrong team here. In fact, I should probably feel more sorry for Rose than I do. But can we just appreciate for a moment the honesty of Scorpius Malfoy? I would just like to point that out even though he's an idiot and drunk. An honest word is a powerful tool in its own right. OK, so I realize he's backing himself into a corner and avoiding all her questions at the moment, but he kind of has a point. The truth comes out better when you're sober and probably sounds a lot better, too. A lot of times in an argument if you just step back and come back to it later, life gets better. The world makes a lot more sense.
Rose will get over it. She will pick up the pieces, especially being old Hermione's daughter, and she will get on with her life. I like that you guys pointed out that the first romance is not always the end of the road. There's a strength that. Should I dare say it's more realistic? Now all the Rose and Scorpius shippers going to hate me. This was a nice slice of life.
Thank you so much for reading and reviewing. I appreciate all your comments! I feel the cursewords were a necessary accessory to the characters here - that's how they are. They use them to express their emotions hence I did what I felt portrayed their state of mind the best.
Hey, I'm here for BvB! <3
Omgggg I loved this to pieces. You do an amazing job of setting the scene in a super hopeful and optimistic way... and then yanking the rug out from under us. Rose's Valentine's Day was so well-planned - mentioning her eyebrows was a particularly nice touch. (Especially for someone like me who sometimes has A Thing about her eyebrows. :P) Overall, though, the scene really was something that I think most of us who have been in love before can really empathize with - and also kind of covet. ;)
And, of course, the anguish she felt when Scorpius didn't show up is also easy to empathize with. The way that fury turns to worry turns to heartbreak is something that I think many of us have experienced, though not in quite this way. :P Granted, we don't know why yet, and he may well have a good reason for not showing up, but still. I feel like either he's in jail/dead or cheating on her.
The thing that really made this chapter was how vividly you described everything. The way you describe her just feels so genuine - the discomfort of her lingerie, her makeup being utterly destroyed once she starts sobbing, her destroying part of her set up before turning to the wine - it's all so, so genuine.
You did an amazing job with this. <3
I am so sorry I haven't responded to this until now. YOU are amazing for writing this lovely review! Thank you :)
Here for BvB :)
AGH SCORPIUS WHAT HAPPENED!?! I AM DISAPPOINTED WITH YOU >:(
But...yeah, I thought this was a very strong start to your story. It was rather fast-paced with a lot of tension, and my heart was beating really fast as I read this as I wondered what had happened to Scorpius. Everything going on keeps the reader going on, which obviously is a good thing :)
Your descriptions in this were brilliant. How did you do it?! Everything was written with such detail, and I could definitely picture the whole thing in my mind clearly. The expressions made the story all the more vivid and I particularly I loved reading about how Rose had prepared everything- especially the trail of chocolates spelling out a message, I thought that was really sweet :)
And now moving onto Rose! Your depiction of her feelings were all pretty good, and I understand why she would be feeling so angry (I mean, all that effort? Come on, Scorpius) Her gradually rising temper was evident but the reader could also sympathise for her. And even though Scorpius didn't even show up on this chapter *makes an angry face* I like how you still threw some hints about Rose's love for him amd I still got a vague idea of what their relationship was like.
In conclusion: wonderful story so far, I'm looking forward to reading the next chapter ;)
Hi and thank you for this review :) I do love throwing similes and metaphors around with carefree abandon!