QUODPOT MATCH 2
I SHOULD DO A PROPER GREETING BUT I'M SUFFERING TOO MANY EMOTIONS, BIANCA. AHHHHHHH
I foresaw this coming with the spiders, but STILL. IT'S SO DEVASTATING. I think I kind of hoped that when all was said and done, perhaps Hero would've been able to fight off Tom, that this story would've had a happy ending, but no—instead there has only been pain and suffering for Hero. I think what pains me the most is that even in her final moments, her parents were still criticizing her, expecting more always.
When I think about that, I'm led to believe that Hero's ultimate fall wasn't really completely her fault. If her parents had loved her more, if her brother had loved her more—maybe things would've been different. And yet, I don't think any of Hero's fundamental character traits would've changed, even with her parents' and brother's love. She's still a fighter, fighting right until the end, and I can't imagine that even being sorted into Slytherin would've changed that.
I hadn't realized about the Befuddlement Draught but omg, it makes SO MUCH SENSE. All those mentions of chocolate. I thought you were just trying to make me hungry, heh. I hate how Tom dismisssed everything, dropped his act as easily as he'd donned it—I hate how despicable he is. I think I came into this fic expecting him to be redeemed in some way, but the last things he says to Hero just reaffirm that he is, honestly, irredeemable. "I don't need anyone" just confirms that he's truly incapable of love.
And the final lines. The level of finality in it, destroying any hope that Hero might've lived. T_T You've crushed my soul, Bianca—really, stomped it to bits. But, you know, I willingly signed up for it, and I absolutely willing again. THis fic has been such a masterpiece in mystery and dark/horror and in manipulating readers' emotions, and this is EASILY the best portrayal of Tom I've ever read. I've always hoped to find a Shakespearean tragedy in fic, and I've finally found it, and it was even better than I imagined. I'm just blown away. No wonder this story has collected so much praise and so many accolades; it's deserving of it all.
At some point, I'm going to read The Harder They Fall. I need time to recuperate from Hero, try to patch my heart back together :P But wow, Bianca. Thank you so much for sharing this fic. I've loved every moment of it. <3
HI B. Another review for Quodpot Match 2!
Ohmygodddd this chapter was literally insane, my mind is completely in a disarray. I should've expected this revelation to come in the penultimate chapter or at some point but like—omg. I didn't expect it to be as intense as this though. The Blishwicks continue to freak me out and I'm nervous about the Besmurten coming to stay at their house, in such close proximity to Tom, too—knowing how Grindelwald basically inspired Tom. And DARCY. Omg. Darcy is INTENSE. And I'm wondering if she's going to try to get revenge on Tom, somehow?
Something about Hero's reaction struck me as weird. She doesn't seem necessarily afraid of Tom, but she feels othered by Darcy calling Tom a freak. I feel so sad for Hero; she can't recognize that really, Tom's manipulation of Darcy, spinning tales—he's doing the exact same thing to her. And I'm feeling kind of angry with Finn for not helping break her out from Tom's hold. The prospect of the final chapter scares me a ton because I don't expect anything good will happen to Hero.
Honestly, Bianca, you've written the perfect dark/horror fic. Sure, Tom is horrifying—but really, the darkest part of it has been Hero's descent into darkness, her growing pain—and I expect it'll probably consume her in the end, which is going to be...tragic. I'm going to need some ice cream for the finale.
Okay, I don't want to delay it more, so I'm moving onto the next chapter, but omg B, this was so so good. Still reeling. <3
Hi B! Another review for Quodpot, Match 2.
Ohmygod. Hero's tale truly has transformed into a Shakespearean tragedy. The confrontation between Emory, Hero, and Theo has been brewing for so long and I really should've expected it—but ahhhh. It just shattered my heart. Again, I find myself just hating all the secrecy, putting up unnecessary walls between them. If they'd just told Emory right away, then they could've worked it out. It's just...intense. I have so so many regrets.
And I can see that Hero has been corrupted so much by Tom. When she talked about Leighton's Muggle family and calling Theo's family blood traitors, I just had a vivid flashback to how protectively she'd defended Morgan when Finn called him a Mudblood. What a one-eighty turn! It makes me really sad because it seems the perfect reflection of her devolution at the hands of Tom—Tom, who has grown even creepier. His "Look at me" and forcing her to choose a side. HERO, RUN. IT'S GONE TOO FAR.
And now with Grindelwald literally staying in her home...the holidays do not bode well, and I am not prepared.
This was such a good chapter. So intense. I'm really excited to keep reading, though it's somewhat bittersweet, because I know that the end is near T_T Ah, this fic has easily been one of my favorite fics on the archive, and I know I'll be thinking about it long after I've finished reading it. <3
HI B! I'm here with another review for Quodpot (Match 2) :)
AHH. THAT IS MY ONLY REACTION. Basically EVERYTHING is falling apart, omg. I can see all of Hero's relationships falling apart and her flaws becoming maximized and I just want to hug her.
I think what hurts me most is the friend-break-up between her and Emory. They've always been so close and now it's just...so painful. And with Theo, too—I'm really hating all the secrets between them because I just know that if they were to TALK to each other, everything would be clarified and they could band together. Instead, they've been keeping secrets from one another and isolating each other, leaving Hero to deal with everything by herself.
Now, thinking back to the beginning of the fic, I'm actually really frustrated with her. Hero's becoming more and more of a Shakespearean tragic hero, so naturally, I've been trying to figure out what her fatal flaw(s) are, and I honestly think one of the biggest ones has been her secrecy, her ridiculous determination that she has to try to figure everything out at once. Now, I can't help but wonder why Hero didn't confide in Theo and Emory in the first place about Noah? Did she feel she'd be judged? Did she feel she couldn't trust them? Did she feel simply that she had no clue how to talk about it. I just wish we could turn back time and I coould yell at Hero to be moe open with her friends.
Instead, we're in this total mess of a situation. I'm so worried about Morgan and I'm so worried about Hagrid and I'm mostly so worried about Hero. Every scene with Tom sickens me now, and his manipulation of her, him forcing himself on her—honestly, it'd be kinder if he'd just Imperius her, though he's basically achieving the same effect with this sort of emotional manipulation. Ugh. Tom is terrible.
Amidst all of these disasters, the last scene with Finn really warmed my heart, and it makes me somewhat hopeful. Maybe Hero will hold onto Finn and find some way to get out from under Tom's grasp?
Ugh. I'm so nervous, but also so excited to fnd out what happens. This was a superb chapter, and I can't wait to read the other chapters too! <3
Hi B! Another review for Quodpot, Match 2 <3
OKAY, BUT FINN?
WHY DO I LIKE HIM NOW.
I've literally despised him throughout the entire fic, but seeing his perspective was strangely illuminating and humanizing—and I think, a perfect strategic decision after the events of the previous chapter and the evidence of the rising doubt in Finn's mind.
I really loved seeing Finn and Brindley's interactions. There was something so pure about them and Finn's crush on Brindley is the cutest thing, and I'm honestly enchanted by them—possibly just as enchanted as Finn is by Brindley herself.
And yet, the cuteness was disrupted by Tom. I think if I had any doubts about Tom's creepiness, they've been completely dispelled now. I can see his true nature very clearly now—which also makes this shift in perspective such a fantastic choice. He's such a master manipulator; when he said "Oh, she'll behave" in reference to Hero, I literally got shivers, and I desperately want to punch him. And I hate the amount of power he has over Finn. In the last chapter, Finn said that he broke up with his girlfriend because "he wouldn't approve". Hero thought that "he" was Finn's father and I think maybe it was to some extent—but honestly, I think that it's probably more Tom. I can already see shifts in Tom's behavior now that he's seeing that Sebastian and the other Blishwicks aren't purebloods. And he's obsessed with purity, I'm concerned that he's going to hurt Hero now because of that.
The scene with Tom imperiusing Brindley really reinforces my hatred of him, because it really felt like Tom was stripping both Brindley and Finn of their free will. And I think that it's the most vicious thing to torture someone's loved one in front of their eyes; I think that also confirms tome that Tom is incapable of love, because if he could really love, then all he'd have been thinking about in that moment would've been someone doing the same to Hero. CONFIRMED: TOM RIDDLE IS A SOCIOPATH. (You're probably wondering how I hadn't pieced that together before this point hahaha...)
I'm so nervous for the ensuing chapters, and this was the perfect dose of clarity I needed to sort of free myself from Tom's manipulative grasp. ARGH. SO NERVOUS. I'm gonna shut up now I can keep reading, but Bianca, this story has been such a delight to read. A creepy delight, which might haunt me for a while, but a delight nonetheless. Thanks so much for sharing <3
Hi B! Here again for Quodpot Match 2.
OHMYGOD. Okay, this feels like a major turning point in the novel. I can start to see all the things building up and I AM NERVOUS.
I really liked the bit at the beginning where Hero was so excited about having a boyfriend. It was a really nice reminder that she's just a teenager—but also, there was that element of wanting to gain her parents' approval again, which added a sort of desperate edge to it. And then later in the fic, seeing Tom so blatantly manipulating Hero's desire for approval made me want to throw up. It added a really tragic edge to her excitement about having a boyfriend. Tom really preys on her natural desire to please poeple and I'm just DISGUSTED.
Slightly more positive news: Finn actually does seem to be becoming more bearable? Crazy, right? I feel like he's beng humanized more, with his fear showing. I can understad why he'd be nervous about disappointing or angering his father too, knowing how abusive Mr. Blishwick again. That actually explains quite a bit of his mannerisms. I am still very wary though. There's something messed up about Finn >_>
Darcy is so mysterious and I know that she's the other girl who was with Noah and that flasback UGH. I really want Hero to piece everything together but also I don't—especially seeing that Sebastian was Petrified by the Basilisk, because, like, Sebastian's a Pureblood too! So Hero could be at risk, and that scares me so much. I'm nervous any time her flaws become so apparent because I just know that something terrible is going to happen to her and ;_;
Yikes, this has been a terrible review, I'm so sorry. I'm just really antsy to move onto the next chapter. I hope you'll forgive me <3 This was such a brilliant chapter though! Can't wait to read the next.
Hi B! Quodpot Match 2, again, as always :)
Ooooookay. Normally I don't pay attention to chapter titles and I probably should've paid attention this chapter's title hahaha. But before I get to the kiss, I just want to say that I have this growing pit of dread in my stomach. I'm so so nervous that something's going to happen to Morgan, who's honestly so kind—and such a good friend to Hero, and handled her rejection like a champ. And I'm even more nervous that something's going to happen Hero, with her entangling herself in all this business with the petrification and the basilisk and Tom. And I can't help but shiver now every time a spider is mentioned, knowing that she's allergic. It does not bode well. (Also, Bianca, you're so smart—I should've known that every detail would be important. At first I thought you'd only mentioned the specific type of spider because you're Australian and all Australians know these things about spiders. But no, there was a reason. you've crafted this story so carefully, and I'm so appreciative of it. I've honestly learned so much in reading it!).
I can't decide who's creepier, Finn or Tom. Finn's SUCH A CREEP, with his whispers (still thinking of 'splish splash') and his blind trust of Tom. I want to shake him and then throw him across the room so he'd be far far away from Hero. He's like the worst kind of Slytherin.
WELL, ACTUALLY, statement retracted. Tom is the worst kind of Slytherin, because he's so damn charming. I'm so conflicted because every scene between Tom and Hero is undeniably adorable—and it would be pure adorableness, if it wasn't for everything we know about Tom. I feel like punching him every time he talks about Muggles or about the Heir of Slythern. And every mention of ravens makes me shiver. And these mentions are tied so inextricably with every romantic scene; it makes their romance darker and further increases that ominous feeling. UGHHH, I really don't want to read more, I'm so worried. But alas, I'm a masochist and I MUST know what happens next.
I think I thought I'd be relieved when most of the mysteries were resolved. I think the only one as yet unresolved is about Theo (who continues to be too jealous, no Theo, stop). But I'm just tenser than ever. Please don't play with my emotions like this, B, I'm not prepared ;_;
I'm going to stop rambling, but I just want to say that your last line was chillingly beautiful. All your one-sentence last-lines have been stunning so far—you really know how to deliver a punch in an ending. <3
Brilliant, as always. Thank you again for sharing this wonderful story with us. <3 Can't wait to get onto the next chapter!
Hi B! As you've probably picked up by now, I'm here for Quodpot Match 2. Funny story I didn't actually intend to review the entire story because I didn't think I had the stamina and yet, I'm on chapter 6 and am still itching to continue. What've you done to me?? It's okay, this has literally been the best use of an afternoon and I've got absolutely zero regrets.
I really liked the step back from all the mystery by refocusing on all of Hero's other problems (as strange as that might sound). It was a good reminder of all the things that Hero is facing and makes me sympathize with her. She's really shaping up to be quite the tragic hero (the reason for the Shakespeare references, perhaps?) I sympathize with her so much for the OWL pressure and the fact that her parents would always give Finn unconditional love and only give Hero unconditional disappointment. She tries so hard and it's really upsetting to me.
Even more upsetting is the impact of all the secrecy on Hero and Emory's relationship. I can imagine that at one point they were so close they probably shared everything with each other, and now all the secrets have really isolated Hero—from both her best friends, in fact. I haven't seen Theo around for a while and I'm getting really worried! (Or maybe this is better? He adds so much drama ugh). The point is, the subterfuge and secrecy is corrupting a relationship that I thought was really innocent, and it makes me super sad.
And Tom. I can see Hero picking up on a few things, and the dramatic irony is physically causing me pain because of Tom's stupid charm and how Hero is unable to resist. I just want to physically grab Hero and wrench her away from Tom so she can be safe. AHHH. TOM, GO AWAY.
On a more coherent note, I do like that he's picked up on her character. I also think that there's something slightly dark about Hero, but perhaps that's just because of all she's experienced? I think the darkest thing about her is her capacity for secrecy, which is something that Tom can relate to. Perhaps that's why Tom is so drawn to her?
It's all very beguiling. You've bewitched me, Bianca, and I'm so excited t read more.
Spectacular chapter as always. <3 Onto the next one!
Hi B! You know the drill—here for Quodpot, Match 2!
OMG, the plot thickens. I have so many feelings wtf.
OK, let's start with this: Morgan is so cute. The best. I don't want him to flirt with Hero because she's already so confused, poor girl, but I platonically ship Ro & Mo together and love his whole philosophy towards House Elves. He's delightful, alright?
And I'm intensely worried about Emory and really want to know wtf Theo did. He probably didn't tell her about Hero because then Emory would've been really mad at Hero, right? Well, I'm not totally sure about that because I don't think that Emory is necessarily the sort of person who holds a grudge. I just think there'd probably have been angrier monologue directed at Hero if Emory knew.
FINN. WTF FINN, you continue to be creepy and insensitive af. I think what creeps me out the most is just how much he knows—he knows things that Hero doesn't know either, and that sort of power imbalance makes me uncomfortable. Also, I could sort of see the unease in his expression which made me just a little hopeful that he wasn't so terrible, but then he ruined it. UGH FINN. Please stop.
I think another reason I'm creeped out by Finn is because he feels like somewhat of an extension of Tom. AND TOM. HOOOOLY SHIT, B. I'm still processing everything that was revealed in this chapter. At first when I found out exactly how Noah died, I was deeply saddened but in the way like "wow, terrible accidents happen all the time; the universe is really flipping us the finger; it's terrible and tragic, isn't it?" Normal nihilistic thoughts. BUT THEN. WITH EVERYTHING THAT WAS REVEALED ABOUT TOM. Noah's one of the kids that Tom brought to cave and Tom's owl looks a lot like a BLACK RAVEN, LIKE THE BIRD THAT CAUSED THEM TO FLY OFF THE BRIDGE.
Really, I just thought I was being paranoid when I predicted that Tom had something to do with Noah's death. BUT NOW. I'm more creeped out than ever. There is clearly no such thing like paranoia when it comes to Tom Riddle. ALWAYS be on edge. BUT IT'S SO HARD, because he's so charming.
NO BACK OFF, TOM.
Somehow, I still have so many questions. Like, did Tom perhaps obliviate Noah, or did he actually change his name? And Tom knows EVERYTHING about Hero's relationship about Noah, doesn't he, then? Which is just insane levels of creepy.
Well, actually, I stand correct. Because he doesn't have a heart, he doesn't understand the amount of emotion that filled that relationship. Or maybe he does have a heart, because maybe he feels guilty about Hero? OR MAYBE NOT, because he's clearly a freaking sociopath.
jfc Bianca I am so confused hahaha. But I'm loving this so much. The suspense keeps building and I can't stop reading.
I've also just realized where in the timeline we are and feel so sad for baby Hagrid :( I probably should've realized that early, but alas, my brain is very slow :')
Okay, I think I've shouted enough. I'm itching to get to the next chapter. This fic is easily the most bingeable fic I've read on the archives. Thank you so so much for sharing it <3
Hi B! Yet another review for Quodpot (Match 2).
I'm very grateful to Quodpot for giving me the chance (or rather, the exact excuse I needed) to finally read this story; it's only chapter four, and I'm already completely entranced.
Can I just that Finn is possibly the worst brother ever? I don't understand what his problem is, but who hits THEIR OWN SISTER? I would like to kick him virtually, okay? I thought he was funny at first, but my opinion of him has changed drastically; he's got problems, man.
I'm also feeling incredibly conflicted about Tom. I have to keep reminding himself that he's evil and not a Good Person, but his little wink and the subtle fluttering in his neck and his protectiveness and UGH, NO, SHREYA, HE'S EVIL. It's getting increasingly difficult for me to not ship Tom and Hero—and yet, I still remain conflicted, now knowng that Hero and Theo actually had a sort of established relationship before whatever happened that night. (That revelation threw me, actually, because it adds more mystery to that night. I thought it'd been something really straightforward, but no, there's something else at work here. Perhaps I should've expected).
Still. Tom and Hero are so cute, wtf. My heart is honestly fluttering in my chest. And I have to reiterate that you're doing such a good job with Tom's character; he's fascinating in a "gosh I know this is going to turn out terrible but I can't look away" sort of way.
I have a much clearer idea of how Noah died, but Noah himself remains such a mystery. Is he really a Muggle? What if Tom had some role in whatever horrific thing happened to him as a child? That's probably why Noah changed his name. (You're doing such a good job with the mystery; in each chapter, I collect more and more puzzle pieces that I can then start attempting to fit together. It makes the suspense exciting and engaging rather than frustrating, and I've got to commend you for your skill! <3).
I've rambled terribly but I can't end this review without mentioning Hagrid. Baby Hagrid is literally the best (forgot to mention him in the previous chapter, oops). He's lovely and perfect. <3
This was so good. Can't wait for the next chapter; thanks so much for sharing! <3
Hi B! Here for Quodpot (Match 2).
Oh gosh, the drama builds, and through it all, I feel so much sympathy for Hero—because there's just so much she's dealing with. I think what strikes me most is the pressure she feels from her parents. I didn't consider it super important considering that there's roosters and people being murdered—but I can see that it's just sort of the straw that broke the camel's back, right? I sympathize with her for her fixation with perfection—how she took so much comfort in something as flawless, beautiful, and elegant as the tapestry, and feeling the pressure to find some way to please her parents. It breaks my heart.
And her boy troubles, omg. Her heart is torn between three boys, all equally charming. I can see that she's drowning literally under all the guilt she feels over Noah's death, which is not good at all for her mental state; half of me wants to push Tom and Theo over, so that they don't complicate the poor girl's life more. I felt tense during their whole altercation, and I can't decide who I support more. Theo is ridiculously charming, honestly, but also, he's with Emory. On the other hand, Tom is also charming—but he's, well, Tom. Kinda evil. Kind of a problem. I did love how Tom was completely unfazed by Theo, despit their size difference, and I love the subtle ways you communicated his own jealousy and anger. I like that Theo is just this ball of fire who wears his emotions on his sleeve and Tom is quite the opposite—withdrawn, with cold fury rather than burning hot fury. They're really great foils to each other, and yet are both just so bad for Hero. I can't decide who I ship with her ;_;
The little clues about how Noah died continue to torture me, btw. I'm begging for more info, B, pleaseee, put me out of my misery!
Also, another little thing I liked: I loved the fixation with Finn's hair, and uh, Finn's crowing is seriously messed up but also somewhat hilarious. I think he's so funny though.
Great chapter, as always. So excited to keep reading. <3
P.S. Uncle Caratacus? Does that mean that Hero is related to Caratacus Burke?
Hi B! Back again for Quodpot (Match 2).
AH. I'm already starting to feel the angst and I just so wasn't ready for it. I sympathize with Hero so much right now, because I can see that her heart is clearly being pulled in so many different directions. In one direction, she's being pulled towards Theo, who she clearly thinks about a lot—as she was thinking about him when she was with Tom—and yet, that promises a world of pain because of what their relationship might imply for her relationship with Emory. (Also, I still adore Emory—she is so pure and sweet and innocent, and I fear that she's going to get hurt at some point and I'm just really not ready for it).
And then her heart is being pulled in an entirely different direction by Noah—or should I call him Dennis? Honestly, Noah is the most fascinating character to me, perhaps because any information I get about him is through Hero's recollections. And wow does she think about him ALL THE TIME. I love that he still lingers with her, a mental presence in her thoughts, and a physical presence on her body through his bracelet. She can't be rid of the reminder of him, and the reminder of whatever she did with him. I'm so curious to find out what happened to him—did he drown? That was the implication, but with the ambiguity, I can never be certain, can I? (I feel lke you're going to enjoy reading my spitballing attempts hahaha).
And then. There's Tom. What to say about Tom. He still creeps me out, TBH, but there's an undeniable allure to him. He's not exactly gentle with Hero, but he's definitely intrigued her—and there's something sweet in the way he talked to her. I might've swooned a little when he touched her hair to get the ink out of it. Ugh. No, Shreya, no heart eyes, he is not a good person!!
The last scene with the roosters gave me shivers and I have a suspicion that Tom was involved somehow. I'm super curious to find out what happened!
Also, last note: TOM STOP LAUGHING, SPIDERS ARE SCARY, AND HERO'S REACTION IS PERFECTLY LOGICAL. Geez. :P
This was such a great chapter. Slowly getting more and more addicted to this story, because the curiosity is too much. Really, you know exactly how to torture a Ravenclaw, don't you? :P
Can't wait to read the next chapter, and thank you for sharing! <3
Hi Bianca! I'm here to leave a review for Quodpot (Match 2). Also I saw your discomfort on Twitter about the number of reviews this story has and I'm here to remedy that problem :P
This is such a fascinating start to a story that I'm already growing addicted to. It's very hard to not get addicted, though; there's really such an addictive quality to the mystery you've created. This chapter was the excellent set-up chapter; I can already see all the various threads of mystery and am starting to anticipate how the various subplots might run into one another. I'm nervous for Hero's mom and find her father to be truly despicable. The conflict between Theo and Hero is also going to add more drama that I'm not looking forward to, because Emory seems like such a good friend to the both of them. (Her obsession with Shakespeare is incredibly relatable and very Claw-ish; I approve :P). Then there's just the general mystery of Tom Riddle, who's already giving me chills. I like that you've kept his creepiness; Tom/OC fics tend to soften him in a way that really makes him Not Tom. But no, I felt on edge at every mention of him.
And then Noah. This is the mystery that intrigues me so mucch, and I love how it makes Hero a more mysterious and slightly more problematic heroine. She is the perfect character to put at the center of all these mysteries; it's clear that she's being pulled in some many different directions because of different forces acting on her life—and the idea that one of these forces might be her own guilt, and the role that Tom might play in that, is genuinely fascinating. She's not a cut-and-dry Super Good Heroine, and I really appreciate that.
I would ramble more, but I'm really excited to read the next chapter. Wonderful start <3
Yes, more reviews for the swap. I’m sorry (but no, not really). :P
“Forgiveness depends on your O.W.L. results.” Okay, well, yikes. Love shouldn’t be conditional on anything, nor should forgiveness. Hero’s parents anger me very much.
Finn is so… rude. And is very disregarding. I’m sure many people were scared by chickens; why would he be so quick to make fun of it?
So no one say the roosters were being killed. Who would be so good at covering their tracks so well?? Hm… (I’m always going to be skeptical of Tom, you see.)
So… it was Noah that died. Was he the muggle boyfriend (that perhaps drowned)?
My theory about Hero and Theo was confirmed; I’m happier about that than I really should be.
But I’m also the tiniest bit sad; why is he dating Emory if he still loves Hero? And what the hell exactly went on with her and Noah? Did they both start seeing other people to move on from each other? So many questions.
Tom may have come to Hero’s rescue, but it is a little suspicious that he came right to Hero, instead of not noticing that body? If that girl is Myrtle Warren, then it was definitely Tom who killed her (indirectly, of course).
Okay, so not Myrtle Warren, but the girl was still petrified. Could it be the works of the Basilisk?
There’s so many tiny but intriguing details that makes this story all that much better. So if Noah was from Wool’s orphanage, could it be possible that Tom knew him (all while keeping in mind that Tom harbored a very strong hate towards all the other kids in that orphanage)?
I wonder why Hero feels so responsible for Noah’s death. The circumstances surrounding are so blurry and unintelligible, but I feel like it might not have been her fault? It just might be survivor’s guilt?
Things are starting to pick up, and I want to read more (even though I really have to start writing). Great chapter! xx
More reviews! :^)
Hmm, there’s a lot of tension between Hero and Theo. It seems whatever happened last year might have meant more than it was or they kissed/made out or something of the like while Emory and Theo were still in a relationship.
So whatever she did is really having a toll on her conscience; so does she want to make her parents proud, and that’s why she’s so torn up about whatever she did?
A question, why exactly would Noah have to tell the doctors about his dream? I suppose he might if it gives him continual stress and trauma. Hm. Never mind about the question then.
It seems a little bit weird to me that Tom would allow a stranger to so easily call him Tom. I think it might be all of the Tom Riddle fics that I’ve read muddling my brain—almost all of which have him hate his first names, so he just goes by Riddle.
But I suppose it would make sense for him to allow people to call him Tom; it gives more of a sense of familiarity, doesn’t it?
Why did Noah want to change his name? For a bit of change? Or is it because he was secretly running away from somebody and he needed to change his identity? There are so many possibilities.
And Tom is strangely humane. It’s hard to imagine him as that megalomaniac who started two wars over his pureblood elitism.
Haha, Emory is such a Shakespeare nut. It’s sort of adorable, except for the fact that the only Shakespeare play I’ve read is Romeo and Juliet and Macbeth.
Chickens, chickens… Hm. My memory isn’t serving me well, but why do I feel that it was chicken’s blood that Ginny used to write that message in Chamber of Secrets? Also, I have a strange feeling that it might be Tom who committed the act of animal cruelty—though I might be wrong.
It’s getting good so far and I’m excited to read more! Great chapter! xx
Hello! Her for our review swap!
So a few things. Hero notes that she isn't looking all that forward to another year at Hogwarts, but immediately refutes that by saying she wouldn't want to spend any more time than she has to with her parents.
From that, they might be really strict parents on general, or Hero might have done something that they consider to be an egregious error. Yikes.
Hero is also compared to the likes of a muggle; her parents might be Pureblood?
Y I K E S. Who is this blood traitor boy? From the looks of things, it don't think it would be too far off to assume that Hero doesn't share the same views as her parents, which probably is the cause of much of the friction between her and her parents.
But her parents seem to pay a lot more attention to her brother (?), so he's probably the child that's better liked. Hero is stuck in a bad place right now, and I really feel for her. It must be hard to be the supposed "disappointment" of the family, and having to face the consequences of it.
Haha, I really do not like Finlay. They're not close at all, and Finlay seems to have no regard for Hero's feelings at the current moment.
... What exactly happened during Hero's summer? Was it bad? Were her parents more insufferable and more obnoxious than before?
What happened! What is so bad that it must be kept a secret????
What the hell is up with Theo? Emory seems nice enough, but if Hero wants to avoid him, Theo must be hiding secrets from Emory.
Well, no, it seems that Hero might be good friends with Theo. Maybe he's the blood traitor boy Hero's parents want her to stay away from?
And ooh, what exactly happened between Theo and Hero last year?
Okay... so Hero knows something is up with Tom. It's pretty telling what her brother might be like if he's friends with Tom Riddle (correct me if I'm wrong, but he rallied his followers by being very charismatic about his pureblood sentiments?).
I'm sorry? Excuse me? Killed a muggle? What?
If that's right, I might be all wrong about Hero. I'm conflicted.
Great first chapter! xx
I am back <3
First off!!! The Hobbit reference in your chapter title is 10 out 10. A Plus. I love it. Which I already told you, but you know. I can never say that enough.
Okay, Okay. Did I mention in my previous review how much I love that Hero and Emory talk to each other using Shakespeare? Because I do, I love it. It’s so cute, also it shows how close they are as friends. Also, I am beginning to not Like Theo. *side eyes Theo* Like, my dude, you have a girlfriend! Stop eyeing Hero! He’s kind of a jerk…
Oh no, I sense Tom Riddle appearing soon. Which I mean, that’s both a good thing and a bad thing. Good thing because, like you I love Tom Riddle xD, bad thing because Tom Riddle is Tom Riddle. (And you keep Tom canon, well you said so anyway and I am inclined to believe you, haha).
Noah is mentioned again! I’m guessing that’s the muggle that Hero “killed.” Okay, yeah, definitely because she’s wearing his bracelet. Also, Noah’s recurring dream sounds terrifying D: Do I sense some foreshadowing here? A space filled with impossible coldness and dense darkness? Yeah, definitely sounds completely terrifying. :3
Wow, okay, Hero. I have the exact same reaction when I see a spider. xD Also… Hero is allergic to the mastilio spider. Hmmm Is this a random tidbit of info that is unimportant? Or is this going to come back later….
I really hope you don’t……. do the thing that I’m thinking in my head……. *SCREAMING INTENSIFIES*
Err. Okay, Bianca. I’m so torn here because on one hand I’m like, “aw look at Tom being gentlemanly and helping Hero.” YEET. On the other hand, I still remember what we were talking about (I didn’t forget [yet] like I said I would), so I’m like, “NO, HERO, RUN AWAY! RUN AWAY! GET AWAY FROM THE HANDSOME BOY! SAVE YOURSELF.” I have a very bad feeling about this…
Also… Tom’s hands were cold like he’d been outside. Tom, what have you been up to?????
I really liked their whole conversation about names, also because the whole thing with Tom hating his name. I also feel like was being surprisingly genuine? When he was like “"I think names are important," Tom said, ignoring me. "You're lucky to have one that is so... unusual. It stands out." It’s not exactly a compliment? But then again, coming from Tom Riddle it very well could be a nickname. Hmm.
Oh, So Noah was originally Dennis Bishop? MORE CLUES!!!!!
OH MAN. THAT’S WHY TOM’S HANDS HAD BEEN COLD!!!!!! BECAUSE THE ROOSTERS!!!
Uh, Okay. I really liked this chapter. Not sure if you could tell or not :p I’m sorry if my thoughts are not that coherent… uhhhhh. But this was sooo good!
Hello Bianca!I thought that I would stop by and surprise you with a review on this story. I thought that this was a really good beginning for your story. It left me with a lot of questions that I really want to know the answers to. I'm glad that in the end you gave us a little bit of informaion about what happened to Hero during her summer and also the end of the year before but yet you still left a lot that needed to be said to know the full story.
I've enjoyed all of the characters mentioned so far but I do feel like I could use some more description throughout the chapter to get to know your main character Hero more as well as more description about the other characters involved so I can really paint a picture of what's happening. You did an awesome job with Hero's dad. I can really tell that she does not like either of her parents and it really made me feel that way about her parents as well so great job on that.
I'm really excited to see where this story will go and you can bet that I will be back soon to leave more reviews! Overall, this was a really great start and I look forward to reading more. ~Slytherinchica08
I LITERALLY TYPED OUT FIFTEEN DIFFERENT REACTIONS BEFORE DELETING THEM BECAUSE NONE OF THEM ADEQUATELY SUMMED UP MY FEELINGS. MY BRAIN IS FILLED WITH EXPLETIVES THAT I’M NOT ALLOWED TO USE. OH MY GOD THIS LAST CHAPTER PUNCHED ME IN THE GUT AND MESSED ME UP TEN THOUSAND DIFFERENT WAYS, I DON’T EVEN KNOW WHAT TO SAY.
I FEEL LIKE I’M GOING THROUGH THE FIVE STAGES OF GRIEF RIGHT NOW, I’M NOT EVEN JOKING.
HE KILLED HER?!?!?!?!
Okay I went and got a drink of water, and now I feel like I’m in a better emotional state to adequately express THE COMPLETE AND UTTER DEVASTATION YOU HAVE WREAKED UPON MY SOUL. I ACTUALLY CANNOT BELIEVE HE USED HER WORST FEAR AS A MURDER WEAPON, LIKE WHO DOES THAT?!?!?!?!?!
Okay I went and got another drink of water, and now I think I’m good. For real.
This final chapter tied up all the loose ends so well, for which I’m really thankful. I thought you timed the reveals well, too; after using Hero’s guesses and worries to create suspense, you now give us the true reasons behind, well, everything. And it’s done so well. I’m now mildly embarrassed remembering my various guesses for why Briony’s nose began bleeding (“Unbreakable” lmaooo), and I’m even more embarrassed that I didn’t even make the connection that the chocolate came from Tom. I pointed fingers at him anyway, just because, but it totally slipped my mind that he was the one who offered her chocolate in the first place.
And then you revealed something that I never even thought to question in the first place, which was an incredibly cool way of doing things, but which also gave me much distress in terms of Hero’s personal safety. You answered a lot of questions, namely: Why has Hero been struggling so much in school, even under Tom’s tutelage? The answer was so sickening my heart nearly stopped. Tom’s been drugging her this whole time? From the very beginning, he knew he wanted her, and so he wouldn’t even let her have full control over her own body and mind?
You need to go and write for Marvel lmao, their villains (excluding Black Panther’s) could certainly use your expertise from writing such a brilliant Tom Riddle.
Onto the most tragic ending I’ve ever read in my life. I was feeling so proud of Hero when she began holding her ground against him, and then you finally unveiled the last pieces of the puzzle, of how that black bird in the middle of the road wasn’t just some everyday raven, but it was Tom’s owl. And this whole time, Tom isn’t even remotely nervous or shaken by her fury against him. No, he’s as calm and collected as ever, as though they’re simply discussing the weather instead of his murderous tendencies. He’s so quick to brag about being the Heir of Slytherin, too, about being the one to hurt all those Muggle-born students.
And he kills her. He murders her in cold blood because he realizes that she will never agree with him, and that’s such a sickening motive, I have no words. I mourn for Hero. She was just beginning to realize she needed to get herself out of this relationship, but then her life was tragically cut short by her very own boyfriend...with a mastilio spider. (I joked in the last review about how breaking up with him probably would not end well, but I didn’t expect anything like this haha.) Everything comes full circle. Her fear that’s irrationally plagued her throughout the story ends up having merit. The fear that caused her to meet him properly for the first time in the library is what kills her. He kills her.
Those last lines are beautiful. I noticed them on the banner as I was reading this story, and I wondered how they applied to the story as whole, and now I have my answer. The ending to this story is just absolutely breathtaking. After I finished reading the last few words, I just sat there for five minutes, breathing and thinking about the overarching beauty of this whole piece, of Hero’s arc that veered dangerously off-course in the middle, of Tom’s increasingly sinister actions as he tries to control her more and more, and of Hero’s reclamation of her own self, only to die one of the worst deaths (at least for her).
I love what you did with Tom Riddle. This whole story, I have loved hating him, and the fact you managed to create a villain like this is beyond impressive. You’re so gifted, and reading this has made me feel a ridiculous number of emotions, and I think I might get a book hangover from this, except this is a fanfiction.
I wonder what’s going to happen to Finn. Tom’s almost certainly not going to tell them the truth of what happened. Will Finn grieve for his sister? Will he believe Tom’s version of the story? Will he take vengeance on Tom if he finds out the truth?
I need to go and...recover now.
Truly, you’re amazing and wonderful and I’ve loved every second of this.
Here we are at the second-to-last chapter and I literally have no idea how this story is going to end. (Which isn’t a bad thing at all! I’m just absolutely mystified at the path Hero’s going to take.) I mean, we’ve seen Hero set aside her personal morals in order to please Tom. Obviously she’s going to act in response to these new discoveries from Darcy, but I honestly have no idea which way she’ll go. Will she go and criticize Tom, and then break up with him? (That’ll end well.) Or will she try to talk to him, only for him to convince her to go his way? (In some ways, I think this might be worse.) I DON’T KNOW. AS I SPEAK, MY FINGERS ARE ITCHING TO INCH OVER TO THE “NEXT CHAPTER” BUTTON TO ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS.
Hero is so lucky she met Darcy this chapter, otherwise who knows how long she would have continued to believe in Tom’s goodness. It totally didn’t even occur to me in the previous chapters that Darcy (Amy?) would have gone to the same orphanage as Tom, so seeing her pale recognition of him was surprising but also an “AHA” moment. Also, gotta love Tom’s statement of, “You’re not going to see her again,” as though Hero’s entire purpose in life is to obey him lmao.
Well, thankfully, she continued what she was doing and went to Darcy’s home.
That guy she spoke with, Zeke. As soon as he confirmed that Noah had seen a strange boy from his orphanage, my heart sank. Not because I expected anything different, but because Hero still wasn’t putting the pieces together, even after Tom had just basically admitted to her that he’d gone to the same orphanage as Noah.
Darcy’s story of what Tom did to her and Noah was chilling to the bone, and it explains a lot of things about Noah, as well: that slip of paper from the psychiatric hospital in the flashback at the beginning, his strange conversation with Darcy at his home, why he changed his name later. We all know that Tom used his magic to terrorize the children who teased and taunted him, but Darcy’s story, filled with specific details never truly provided to us by Jo, made Tom’s backstory all the more nauseating. I love how you described the pain that Tom caused Darcy and the other kids, as being deep inside her veins, but not exactly physical. That’s a perfect description for what he did.
Okay. Okay okay okay okay. I am ready for the last chapter. I’m going to be so incredibly sad that this fantastically dark story is over, BUT there’s always Finn’s story to read next.
Oh my god. Well now that I’m at the end of the review, I’m so hesitant to read the last chapter because I don’t want this to end, ever. I’ve been having so much fun reading and reviewing this, even though this story has given me ridiculous amounts of pain and worry for Hero lmao, ahh.
...Why do I talk so much in these reviews. Thank you for putting up with so much of my nonsense omg.
The further I get into this story, the more stressed out I feel hahaha. I regret writing earlier that reading and reviewing this story made me relaxed because I am most certainly not relaxed anymore, nope. Everything’s so tense! Tom Riddle is slowly and subtly becoming more demanding of Hero, there’s this family secret that everyone seems to be keeping quiet, and the conflicts between everyone around Hero are driving me mad with worry.
Both Hero and Finn both seem to think that it was the chocolate that poisoned Briony somehow, which makes me significantly less sure about my earlier guess of an Unbreakable Vow haha. If it was the chocolate, though, did someone purposefully give Hero chocolate with lovage in it at some point? Because I really can’t imagine that the chocolate just so happened to contain lovage, without some sort of outside involvement. The entire thing does feel vaguely like an accident, but it also smells really fishy. My gut says that it has something to do with Tom Riddle, but then again, that guy’s so alarming that I would probably blame him for everything that happens in the following chapters.
At this point, I feel more appreciative of Finn. He’s been supporting Hero throughout this recent crisis, and he definitely cares less than before about the entire family supporting Grindelwald. Maybe if Sebastian had been petrified a few chapters ago, Finn would have disowned him on the spot, but now he seems to just be tired of the family’s ambitions and connections.
OKAY BUT TOM?? UM BACK OFF BUDDY.
For this chapter, Tom’s Creepiest Line is a tie between: “Look at me,” said to Hero after she gets distracted by Brindley, who’s only in the Hospital Wing because TOM PUT HER IN THERE; and also “If it's too difficult for you, let me make the choice easy,” which is, uh, ominous. But yeah, the first line honestly sounds more like an order than anything else. Please please please, Hero, leave him. I’m so scared he’s going to gradually become more and more unrelenting in his control over her, to the point where he might actually harm her if she tries to resist.
I think that scene in the library is just further proof that he’s not letting her go. Like, she thinks Tom is so angry with her he doesn’t want to see her, but his response to her, “You thought what?” is unnerving. There is a good chance I am reading way too much into those three words, because he’s Tom Marvolo Riddle and I am inherently distrustful of Tom Marvolo Riddles, but it honestly sounds like he’s surprised that she would even consider that he would ever leave her. Which...honestly would be a lot less suspicious were he not Tom Riddle.
When Tom says, “I said I would take care of it,” I suppose he means “get the basilisk to petrify the captain of your Quidditch team so that you won’t have to choose between my House and yours during the game,” which is literally the craziest thing I’ve ever heard in my life. He’s so insistent on Hero’s loyalty that she isn’t even allowed to play a sport against his House? So controlling. And then he encourages Hero’s sense of false superiority, and provokes her into acting on feelings she shouldn’t even be feeling towards Leighton, and tells her to just steal Leighton’s bracelets as though it’s her right to do so. And I’m noticing Hero’s jealousy that Leighton gets to talk with Morgan and make him laugh, which, GIRL, AS MUCH AS I SHIP YOU AND MORGAN AND AS MUCH AS I HATE TOM, YOU ARE IN A RELATIONSHIP ALREADY. A really dangerous one, but she’s not at all aware of that.
Oh, and Emory. I suppose having feelings for other guys is a common theme in Hero’s past, because this didn’t fully register before, but I just realized that Theo was dating Emory at the time he decided to sleep with Hero. That’s...honestly so awful for Emory omg. Her life has been tragedy after tragedy this year, and the girl deserves a break. Though I wonder who told her. Once again I suspect Tom, because he has legilimency and was probably able to read Hero and Theo’s minds that one time he caught them. Not to mention Tom has expressed disgust in Hero’s friendships in the past, and probably wouldn’t mind ruining them for his own sake.
And then he goes and petrifies Morgan.
I love this and I love your writing and I love you. <3
Having just read this chapter, I can safely say an accurate summary of my feelings is: OH NO. WHAT. WHAT. NONONONO. BACK OFF, TOM RIDDLE. WHATWHATWHATWHAT. OH MY GOODNESS. WHAAAT.
More coherently, that can be translated to: This is a really good chapter.
The things you hinted at last chapter, of Sebastian being Muggle-born, are confirmed in this chapter, and oh boy, I feel stressed out for Sebastian’s parents. Imagine being under constant fear that your beloved son will be harmed by the patriarch of your family omg. Unless he’s mostly concerned with his own safety, but I doubt it. He seems to genuinely love Sebastian as his own, and that just breaks my heart. I wonder if Hero is going to tell Finn this, or if she’s going to keep it to herself. Because right now, she still doesn’t know about his slight shift in loyalties, right?
I wonder what Hero’s uncle is talking about when he says “the others” and then cuts himself off. Is he under an Unbreakable? Is that why he’s refusing to say anything else? Because Hero’s cousin Briony was cut off, as well, just as she’d begun to say something that sounded important, and blood came out of her nose like an endless fountain. So many secrets omg, I’m so so curious to find out what happens.
When I read that part where Hero comes up with her plan for catching the monster, I was a little disturbed. Using a Muggle-born as bait? Is she so sure that she’ll be able to protect the Muggle-born? Because it sounded to me like she’s too willing to put the life of a Muggle-born at risk. And she ended up asking Emory, too. Dear, lovely, sweet Emory, who I haven’t seen properly for several chapters now, and who’s been struggling a great deal while Hero dealt with her own problems. I honestly don’t think there’s anything wrong with Hero putting her own problems before her friend’s, but I do think that Hero shouldn’t then turn around and ask her abandoned friend for perhaps the most dangerous favor ever. So I feel so bad for Emory.
And Morgan. I feel horrible for him too. Obviously Hero is under no obligation to date him, but she admitted to herself that she was attracted to him, and that the only reason she refused him was because she was afraid of her parents’ judgment. And honestly, Morgan is ridiculously kind and helpful, even after all that, and I actually kinda ship him and Hero at this point. Sometimes I just sit down and imagine how much happier she would be if she dated Morgan instead, because I see no path with Tom Riddle that will lead her to a happy ending.
I would like to briefly say, you write the most wholesome, adorable little Hagrid in the world. He’s young and naive and believes the very best of magical creatures. When he says, “Well, it’s no’ nice...” in response to Hero’s swearing, my heart practically burst at how pure he is.
Thank goodness for Morgan’s reason, though, otherwise I feel like Hero would have spontaneously combusted on the spot. Her fear of mastilio spiders is so strong I feel like she loses all logic and common sense at even the thought of seeing one.
Now for Tom Marvolo Riddle. I have an entire list of names I could call him that would not at all be appropriate for a review, but yeah. I think that he as a character is repulsive, but I think that you as a writer are so admirable for being able to write young Tom (and all your other characters are brilliantly done, as well). I feel like if this story was a book I decided to pick up one day, I wouldn’t be able to get enough of your characters, especially Tom, who is charming and, quite frankly, really hot, but whose actions have this constant underlying unsettling quality. But the fact that we as readers already who Tom turns into definitely contributes to his unsettling characteristics, and you use that to your advantage delightfully.
That being said, BACK AWAY FROM HER, TOM. What he’s doing to her scares me so much. Is this what he was talking about last chapter when he said he would make sure that she behaved? The fact that he knows how to distract and convince her so easily makes me so scared for her. NO GOOD BOYFRIEND ASKS YOU TO CHOOSE BETWEEN YOUR FRIENDS AND HIM/YOUR FAMILY, HERO. TREAD CAREFULLY.
I swear, he’s going to drive her to an early death.
Everyone is starting to become wary of Hero’s involvement with the Slytherins, and honestly, I do feel they’re justified. Hero keeps excusing Tom and her brother in her mind, and while I don’t think she’s going to throw the Quidditch game as a way to earn favors with them, I’m finding it hard to dislike Leighton and Theo for saying what they’re saying. Ahhh, please let Hero be alright! I want her to extricate herself from this situation as safely as she can.
And now we’re at the end, where Hero talks to Briony about Sebastian. But then blood pours out of Briony’s nose, enough to drench her robes and turn them red, and that’s horrifying and terrifying and I need to know what happened. I’m still stuck on the idea that it could be an Unbreakable that the family was put under.
REALLY REALLY GOOD CHAPTER. <3
Hello! ^_^ I thought I’d start with Hero so it could pave the way for me to be able to read the rest of this ‘verse, :D
Initial thoughts that I am having: WOW FANTASTIC. You write in first person so well, your writing is so beautiful. *cries* I also just find the whole idea behind this fic so far to be so intriguing because: 1) tom riddle/OC – that’s definitely not something I’ve read before and 2) UH, what’s is Hero’s backstory?????? Killed a muggle???
I love how you started this out. I always find beginning a fic so hard and you just did it so naturally. I’m not sure what it is about it? I like how Hero’s counting in her head like, “one Gryffindor… two Gryffindor… Three Gryffindor.” I just really like that and the fact that you interspersed that with the next few paragraphs.
I feel so bad for Hero already because her family doesn’t approve of the fact that she’s in Gryffinfor And I’m also like??? What happened?? Whatever happened she’s clearly still upset about it and suffering from guilt. Because if she really did kill a muggle like Finn suggest later wouldn’t her family be pleased? “Neither mum nor dad so much as looked at me, and then they stepped through the barrier and were gone.” That’s so sad!!! They didn’t even say bye to her ☹
I really like Emory so far, from what we’ve seen of her – which isn’t much, but I’m excited to see what their friendship is like. But I have a feeling something bad is going to happen because I’m getting the vibe that Hero and Theo did some stuff :s which that’s not going to end well at all.
I’m trying to decide if I like Finn or not, haha. He’s kind of mean to Hero. Not sure what splish splash means (yet?) but it made Hero upset so I’m guessing it was mean/insensitive. And he’s like “geez who died.” And then he’s like, “too soon?” Okay, Finn, way to be insensitive.
And Tom Riddle is staring at her at the end, super creepy…. “All I had to do was avoid Finn, Riddle, conversations about the past few weeks, large quantities of water and being in the same room as both Theo and Emory.” Oh Hero, I have a feeling that’s easier said than done.
Just like how I loved the way you started the chapter, I loved how you ended (again, I always find endings so hard to do). I always love the one sentence paragraphs. I think the choice here was perfect.
I definitely can’t wait to keep reading this fic because it’s so good so far. Like seriously. <3
Oh my dear goodness. This chapter was everything I ever wished for and more.
Every time you reveal something, I get ten thousand times more excited to read on. In this case, it was Finn’s (honestly kinda adorable) crush on Brindley that made me flail, because I totally wasn’t expecting you to mention anything about the two of them until The Harder They Fall, so this was such an amazing surprise. Also, the entire chapter’s in Finn’s POV, which is really cool and different.
Of course, Tom Riddle has to go and make things unbearably dark, as he does.
I really appreciated hearing Finn’s honest and true thoughts, and honestly, he sounds a lot more reasonable in his mind than when he’s actually speaking haha. Makes me think that he’s definitely putting on a show for Tom, all those times he uses the “Mudblood” slur in front of Hero. In the beginning of the chapter, Finn clearly wants to join Grindelwald and to help Tom, but his manner of speaking makes me wonder if he realizes what he’s getting himself into. He describes it as “a few curses, a bit of duelling practice,” and asks “What harm was in it, really?” Which sounds incredibly naive. I suppose that’s a point in his favor, because at least he doesn’t seem to be aware of the true meanings and consequences of joining Grindelwald.
Sometimes I think it would be glorious to have Tom’s way with people, but then I remember Voldemort and immediately back away from that thought. But the way he interacts with professors, and with the two Black girls. He’s frightening, but it’s also impressive.
His motives are, uh, significantly less impressive, though. This whole time, I honestly thought he was targeting Muggle-borns for the fun of it (which isn’t all that great to begin with), but it turns out he’s actually trying to kill them. Oh my goodness. That’s not good. I can smell the death of a certain Myrtle coming soon, as soon as Tom figures out what’s preventing his basilisk from targeting Muggle-borns. I also thought it was interesting that it’s the basilisk that seeks out the Muggle-borns, and not Tom that directs the basilisk to specific people.
Which brings us to Sebastian. Adoption? Are his parents secretly sympathetic to the plight of the Muggle-borns? Is there some overarching connection to Noah and Tom and Darcy, or am I completely overthinking things lmao?
I would also like to mention real quick that I thought nothing could top the creepiness of Tom asking Hero, “Don’t you want to make me happy?” but the last line of this first scene really overshot the creepiness scale: “Oh, she’ll behave. I’ll make sure of that.” UM EXCUSE ME TOM, BUT IF YOU THINK YOU’RE GONNA MANIPULATE HERO YOU HAVE ANOTHER THING COMING. In all seriousness, I cannot get over how dark this line is. (How are you this good at writing Tom Riddle omg.)
That entire scene where Finn is just completely enamored by Brindley’s fascination with magical creatures is so sweet, but also tainted with that looming threat of Tom, who really makes it his primary goal to ruin everything, doesn’t he. (I am fully prepared to jump onto the Finn/Brindley ship at this point haha.) I probably should have expected something this horrible of Tom, to purposefully put Brindley under the Imperius Curse and make her burn herself just to test Finn.
I do appreciate that Finn recognizes that what Tom did to Brindley is horrible, and that his loyalties shift a little bit. However, I think it’s one matter to understand why the ideology is wrong, and another matter to feel angry because a loved one gets hurt. So I’m going to reserve judgment on Finn’s redemption arc at the moment, but I have a feeling it’s going to be a phenomenal one. Just look at the stunning way you write your characters omg. <3
Absolutely wonderful chapter!
I am concerned on like five thousand different levels right now. You were right, I am no longer relaxed while reading this lmao. Everything that’s happening in this story right now is making me feel so anxious for how Hero is going to get herself out of this situation, or if she ever will get out.
On a happier note, I see that Brindley’s introduced in this chapter! Now, I don’t know if this is because I have a feeling she’s going to help Finn out of this terrible state of mind he’s in right now, or if this is because she’s a Hufflepuff, or if this is because you wrote her with some magical calming spell or something, but the second I read her name, I relaxed hahaha. Even just thinking about her is calming. I DON’T KNOW MAN. Maybe it’s just my exhaustion speaking, but Brindley feels like a miracle of a human being.
On a decidedly less happy note, Emory’s upset, and that makes me upset. I really love her as a character, and honestly, as whimsical and lackadaisical as she can be at times, I just think she deserves the world. (I mean, she recites random Shakespeare quotes, and she referenced Pride and Prejudice, and how can anyone not immediately love her?) So I wish that Theo didn’t treat her the way he did, and I wish that Hero didn’t let herself become so immersed in Tom’s flirtations that she forgot about her best friend’s troubles. Poor, poor Emory omg. I have a really bad feeling that Tom’s going to target her next, especially since she just spent a good amount of time trying to talk Hero out of dating someone like him.
Speaking of which, that scene where Emory says, “Hell is empty, and all the devils are here,” is literally the most perfect thing I’ve ever read. That Shakespeare quote fits so well, omg. She’s so wonderful, and my heart hurts for her.
This is completely out of order, but that scene in the library completely freaked me out. Not the parts where Hero discovers even more of Tom’s genocidal tendencies, but the parts where he’s trying to convince her that he’s right. And the fact that he succeeds. The most frightening line in this entire chapter is when he says, “Don’t you want to make me happy?” to try to get her to agree with his prejudice. God, I got chills down my spine upon reading that. I remember saying in one of my earlier reviews that I was fairly sure Tom wouldn’t try any of this manipulative BS on Hero, but wow, was I wrong. This is so manipulative, and so creepy, and I’m so disgusted with Tom, more than ever. I just want to whack him with a frying pan right now, ugh. (Though I can see why you enjoy writing him so much. Writing scenes like this must be fun.)
Also, Finn. I don’t know what’s up with Finn, but I have hope for that boy, and he’d better not fail me like Hero did. (Though I still have hope for Hero, too. Don’t give up, girl!) This exchange between him and Hero was a thousand times better than all the times he insulted her or was violent towards her, so.
And now I want to know a million different things about Darcy, too. Did she used to date Noah? Does she know about magic? Is she a witch? Does she have a weird code with Noah where they use chess terms, or are they actually playing chess? What’s Noah’s original name? What’s her history with him?
Not to mention that ending. Poor little Sebastian omg. Why would Tom target a Blishwick?
(ANYWAY HAPPY 100 REVIEWS. <3)