Gina, this was lovely :) It was perhaps not my favourite story of yours (though I suspect that's more because of my canon card than anything, lol) but I still liked it. I liked how you brought Draco and Luna together, on New Year's Eve, and how they found common ground through creatures and so on.
I loved their first kiss. I think it was so beautifully written, especially against such a gorgeous backdrop of the beach. That was definitely one of the strongest points in the story -- the description. It was so vivid and really made me feel like I was actually there, which was great :)
Nice one, Gina :D
Author's Response: Thanks so much, Soraya! I'm glad you liked it. I don't expect every story to go in the favorites, category, lol. Especially something like this. It was an idea I was kicking around for a while--I don't write rarepairs much, so this was a great chance for me to finally give it a try! The description comment is funny, because my original idea had nothing to do with the beach, but then it almost became it's own character. I even looked at pictures! Anyway - thanks so much for the lovely review! ~Gina :)
GINAAAAAA! this is so heartwarming. You have really drawn such a lovely picture of Luna and the way she redeems people in her startling innocence and clarity. I'm not keen on Luna fics as a rule, but you really made her much more than the ditz.
I did think he'd have recognised her earlier. In my mind she has a distinctive voice - plus she was held at the Manor (I loved the way she didn't hold that against him) - so I wonder if he should have thought there was something familiar about the voice, even if he couldn't see her face and eyes.
Another minor nit-pick (sorry). A few of the creatures you mentioned should be capitalised - Veela, Hippogryff, Plimpy, and I'd add Mooncalf because it's a creature I think you've invented.
I loved the ending (good call to reclaim your canon card - heh heh). Luna and Draco wouldn;t really have worked, but I love the fact that she was there to give him the nudge to change.
Back to the beginning. Draco's life was so well written. Present tense - I'm struggling atm, but this was effortless. I adored his POV; you caught him so well!
Loved Astoria at the end, but then I adore her anyway. Lovely story ~Carole~
Author's Response: Carole!! A belated thank you for the lovely review. I'm glad you liked Luna here when you don't often enjoy reading her, that means I did okay by her. I'll have to nip in and change those capitals someday, although I did not invent the mooncalf! As for Draco recognizing her, I see your point (you and Natalie) and maybe someday I'll tweak that too. I didn't really think of it until I was quite a ways into the story and thought I'd found a decent way to address it. I can see how mentioning it earlier would help, but I can also see Draco's guilt keeping him quiet. Or maybe he didn't have much contact with her when she was held there. Maybe his parents shielded him from that. Haha how's that for a coverup? I think I had some half-cocked answer for Natalie as well, lol! Ah well, can't win them all. Am still glad the present tense didn't bug you and that Astoria got me my canon card back. And I thank you once more for the review!! ~Gina :)
I LOVE THIS. Of course, I love Draco redemption fics in general, but there was something so pleasant, so calming, so understated about it. It inspires so many promises of hope.
What I enjoyed most about this story was Luna. You wrote her so, so well. But your depiction of Draco-snark was perfection too. This exchange had me giggling:
"You're Draco Malfoy," she replies instead. The non-sequitur throws him and he responds defensively.
"And you're bloody brilliant," he snaps back. "Do I know you?"
I honestly felt for Draco's plight in this story. He's one of those characters that a fanfic writer can easily make or break, and here, you did a great job at invoking pity in us. This part made me tear up actually:
"He's a naturalist," she replies. Her eyes light up with happiness, and in an instant he knows he has lost her.
My only nitpick is that the mention of Luna's captivity at Malfoy Manor came somewhat late. I'd expect twitchy Draco to think of it earlier. You could still add it in a line or two in the first section itself. Just a suggestion.
OH! I forgot to mention I enjoyed your version of Astoria as well. :D I think JK mentioned somewhere that she was a Slytherin, but meh. I also wrote her as a Ravenclaw in my early versions.
Really loved this, Gina. I used to secretly ship Draco/Luna on and off, so it made me happy!
Author's Response: Natalieeeee! Thank you so much for the review! I'm so glad you liked it, I've been playing with this idea for a while. Originally it would have taken place over several years, but I think I like this better. I'm glad I kept a bit of Draco's snark, although by this point he is a bit depressed and disillusioned. You know, I woke up and checked for reviews and first thing I did was go look for Astoria--which I had done already, but I just wanted to be sure. I didn't find any reference to her house, and I put her in Ravenclaw to go with my Christmas story about Scorpius and Roxanne (Scorpius was in Ravenclaw.) So I think I'll stick with that either way. And I have to admit I wrote more than half of this before remembering the bit about Luna being captive. I knew I had to address it and I thought it turned out okay, but I could see your point about it being earlier. Although, their first encounter is so brief, he might not even think of it until he keeps meeting her and the guilt begins to grow. Haha, that's an 'after the fact' answer if there ever was one! Thanks again for the lovely review! On to my next pairing...~Gina :)