So, do you want the good news or the bad news first? May as well be the bad...
The Bad News
Erm, since I ended up going into Grammar Nazi Mode at first, I'll start with the problem spots I jotted down.
Muggles who know of magic and wizards who wish to may enrol,
I think you should put "may enrol if they wish" instead of "who wish to may enrol"...I had to read this sentence over before I got what you were aiming at. (Don't worry though, I had a similar problem reading HBP). Also, I'm not sure if maybe enrol with one l is a perfectly legitimate spelling which I'm not used to, but I learned to spell enroll with two l's.
The Muggle will be selected to be shown around and work briefly at a randomly chosen location.'
I'd say go with "The Muggle selected will be shown around and work briefly at a random chosen location." Another one of those sentences where the word order confused me...
which were basically used as a method of instantaneous conversation.
I'm picky. That is the only reason this one's here. For some reason I have a very formal approach to third person and it just weirded me out for a second to see the word "basically" in third person narration. -rolls eyes at silly self-
this had obviously perked the interest of the wizarding world.
Another overpicky one. For whatever reason, my brain immediately replaced "perked" with "piqued."
Their guide was a young, springy wizard, who seemed to be under the impression that he could remove and insert H's where ever he pleased.
A quick fix here--"where ever" should probably be "wherever."
Before leaving the quarters, they were made to wear the same khakhi-coloured clothes as everyone else on the reserve
"Khaki," not "khakhi."
The Good News
You'll notice that I stopped finding places to pick at partway through...that's cause the story caught me up and I didn't feel like pausing in my reading to look for errors. Which is a good thing. I loved the accents. I loved the characters. I loved the plot. And I definitely loved Bellona. I may not be a good reviewer, but this was an amazing story.
Hello SPEW Buddy!
First off, congratulations for winning the tournament! This story definitely deserves it; I did not do the tournament so I don’t know the prompts, but this is a well-written story. Well done. [hugs]
The very first line of your fic struck me, but it was mostly the name that caused the snag. Percy Weasley, Minister of Magic? I’ve no complaints, but it’s an interesting choice, one that is certainly believable. By the way, there is a comma missing in that first sentence after ‘Minister of Magic’ that should be there.
The pairing of Dudley and Luna is really quite interesting. I’ll have to read your other fic on this to see how it all started, but within Belladona you show a great dynamic between the two.
Before reading DH, I would have said your Dudley is far too soft. Now, though, I’d have to rethink that. He did show a bit of humanity when saying goodbye to Harry, so he’s obviously got it in him. Luna might bring that out even more as well; again, probably reading your other fic would better explain that. Given all these factors, I believe you’ve written a believable Dudley that fits well into your story and the world in which you’ve placed him.
He reminds me a bit of Hagrid, too, because of Bellona – especially when they released her from the tower. I was reminded of Hagrid and Norbert in the way Dudley grew to care for her and then had to set her free. It didn’t feel like a copy of that relationship, though; to me it seemed reminiscent while Dudley was still himself.
And on other other side-- our side-- we have next to no idea how the Muggle world operates
Slight nitpick here – ‘other’ is written twice here. I’m sure it is just a typo and one of those ‘other’s is meant to be ‘the’, and that’s easily fixable.
Now that the tournament is over, you might consider splitting this one-shot into a two- or three-shot. There are a few places that I read where I think it could be done, and that way it is not an overwhelmingly long one-shot. Sometimes readers see a large word count and skip it, but if you break it up you might bring in some otherwise reluctant readers.
I liked that you ended the fic with letters to Dudley but no replies. The last one was so sad! I’d have liked to see Dudley’s reaction, but I think it was a good move for you to leave that out. I think it was a great ending and would have felt differently had you not ended it as you did, without Dudley’s reaction.
After finishing this fic, I can see why you won. Its well-written and fits into JKR’s world while still holding a bit of originality from the author (I can see you and your humor peeking through in places, such as here: 'Aye, you could stand en front of the hottest thing on Earth--' One of the group muttered 'Jessica Alba,' which gained him a weird look from the wizard - but you did not overdue those instances). The idea itself was very original, and it worked well. Most importantly, your story was entertaining and kept the reader interested. To have achieved all of that is certainly worth the winning title, in my opinion, so I’m glad you got it – it was well-deserved.
Congratulations for writing such a beautiful story. The best thing about the story is the originality in the idea. It was really brave painting Dudley dursley as a kind hearted man....Thank you!!