this is an interesting fic. wished it was longer... :( feel so sad for cho. what an ass ben is...
Author's Response: Thank you so much for reviewing! I might write more about Pansy and Cho in the future. And I agree, Ben is a disgusting excuse for a human being. xx Ariana
Often, a story just leaves us exhausted, in spite of our biggest, most earnest efforts. I think the disappointment you underwent while writing this fic is the same I had to deal with while trying to continue my Krum/Gabrielle. Words feel too heavy to type, even if the story is too clear in the head.
However, sometimes, it so happens that we aren’t the best judge of our own writing, and your experience with this fic is a prime example of that. I’m not sure what you were going for, but this finished product we have is quite compelling. Pansy sounds painfully like Pansy - unlikeable, self-absorbed, cruel and blunt. Cho is harder to nail down, but she has always been. What I do love is how you’ve caught her insecurities. Her dependency on men and romance, for example. But by the end, both of them have changed. Cho has chosen to free herself, and Pansy has relented.
You always write beautifully, and trust me, this fic was no exception! It wasn’t a typical romance, no, yet it wasn’t devoid of romance either. What lends it beauty is the uncomfortable realism of the two women’s struggle.
Nicely done, my beautiful mistress! And good luck! : ) This is an amazing entry, padfootically.
Author's Response: That is EXACTLY how it felt to write this story. I had the idea for so long that it felt stale and unoriginally cliche, and I couldn't motivate myself to actually write it.I am so especially happy you liked the characterization, since the main reason I almost didn't post this was that I thought Cho was OOC. She's changed from the battle- but she still has the same insecurities like you pointed out :). Thank you so very much for this review, my inspiring mistress. It can be your birthday fic, if you want (but it is impossible to write something good enough to give to you), and I have another idea planned (because I'm so heinously late with your present) so you can choose between them if you want. Anyway your review made me smile, padfootically. xx Ariana
I am speechless. There is nothing coherent that comes to mind when I try to think about what to write here. You've taken two characters I've never had reason to like and made me care about them. You've made me hurt for Cho and wish that she finds freedom in her new situation, and you've made me hope that Pansy has found something other than oblivion to fill her nights.
This was absolutely masterfully written, and it's a beautiful piece.
Author's Response: Your review has left me speechless :) Honestly, thank you so much! All I could ever want for this story is for readers to empathize with or connect with Cho and Pansy and it makes me so very happy to hear that you have. Thank you again for such a heart-warming review! xx Ariana
Why were you worried, honey? This story is fabulous - a strong contender for an award - of not the top one. (I wrote my LJ entry before reading this, jsyk)
Anyway what can I say. You've taken two characters that I don;t usually feel much for (I do think Cho is maligned in ff, but Pansy is horrible) yet here I feel a connectioon to them - yeah, eeep, even Pansy (It was the lines about bleeding her fingers to write - I'm not quite as evil, though.) And Cho was ... lovely. Her husband was obviously a git and playing away, but she put up with it because she was desperate for someone to feel something for her, whereas Pansy was desperate to feel. Fantastic premise for the story - really great motivations.
“Was he with someone else?” Pansy asked, using the bored and disinterested voice she drew on whenever things began to get scandalous and interesting.
YES! HE WAS THINKING ABOUT OLIVERRRRRRR!!!!! hahahahahahah - I know you didn;t mean that, but in my mind it's true - heheheheheheheh.
Okay back to the story, I loved this a lot. I think your characters were amazing, the pacing was great and the end was GAHHH, jaw dropping. They're both alone. Hmm, will they get back together? I rather think they need each other. Cho smooths Pansy's edges, Pansy roughens up the delectable Cho.
Amazing fic. Sorry, I am sleep-deprived so this review is pants, but I loved it.
Author's Response: This review was not pants :) It made me so happy, especially as I read it in math class on my phone and was not having a good day before then. I half expected this story to be rejected, because I was angry a lot while writing it - angry at the plot and the characters and wondering why my writing wasn't improving. I'm still not a huge fan of this fic, but as I told Alex, both of your reviews amazed me and made me feel better about completing the story.
Also, HE WAS THINKING ABOUT OLIVER! That sentence was for you (even though this is supposed to be Natalie's birthday present…oops!) and DNW in general, but I didn't want the allusion too heavy because it made the story look clunky and I can't even allude to Oliver/Cedric nicely because the way you write them is mind-blowingly brilliant.
Thanks for the review, Carole. You are so sweet. xx Ariana
Hello Ariana! Well this was interesting. I’ve never found Cho particularly interesting--but I’m really enjoying thinking and reading about Pansy at the moment, so was intrigued by this pairing. Then, of course, you make me go and feel for both of them. I think this was so beautifully constructed. Just--from the very poetic and stunning start, to the dialogue. I love the way you write--you’re probably tired of me telling you this--but that the narration can be so beautifully lyrical, and yet the dialogue blunt and real and crude. I love that :)
I thought it was great that you characterised them separately, and gave such an accurate picture of their two very different lives, where both shared a certain numbness but with very different causes. And then they meet, and my don’t the sparks fly? I LOVED the dialogue. Pansy’s characterisation up until that point was so--cruel and drunk and just exactly as I see her as being after the war--and then she meets Cho and is rather sweet. Offering her the drink, and talking to her. I loved the line about masochism :) and the “He Who Gives Better Head Than Harry?” That was funny :) Your Pansy is very intuitive--saying that, and then later when she, from not much that Cho has said--indeed they reveal more of each other in that first meeting, before sex takes over--points out the line about the butterfly, and Cho’s husband. Who is a git. He reminded me of Joan’s husband in Mad Men....which if you don’t watch, I think you’ll love. He finds out his wife is cheating adn is embarrassed? What a w-----, and the way he talked to Cho before she met Pansy--ugh. That’s incoherent. He’s a git, and Pansy is bamf for telling him, and forcing Cho to realise that he is, and that she doesn’t need him. I love the way Pansy does much more for Cho, than Cho does for her really. It’s an interesting dynamic between them.
I think why I prefer Pansy to Cho, is Pansy’s lack of self pity. When she says the lines: “A kiss?” Pansy supplied with a smirk, because this moment was supposed to morph into something glib and not serious.” and “You’re obviously unhappy and miserable -- especially if you think fucking me is going to get you anywhere.” just--HOW do you write lines like that? With such a low opinion of herself, and fear of going beyond sex, and yet at the end, there’s something rather beautiful and cosy about the image of her at home, with her mug of tea. Although I liked that Cho got her life together, and the way her section ended, with her illusions falling away and taking control of herself, I thought the way you ended it was perfect. It wasn’t love, but it was an important relationship for them both, though I’m not sure either would admit it. I feel at the end though, that Pansy is being genuine when she says she just enjoyed being with Cho, and the way it was less crude than her previous lifestyle. And the final line--perfection.
The change from being sex, to a confrontation of Cho’s faults, and Pansy learning something about herself in the process, was so elegantly done. This story was beautiful, and this review incoherent. Apologies, but I loved this story, and I can't remember ever saying that about a Cho as main character story before. Alex
Author's Response: Alex!
Thanks so much for leaving me such a long and lovely review :). It really does mean so, so much to hear that you liked it, particularly because I'm still trying to decide how I feel about it atm. I think it's a little bit different than what I usually write (maybe it's the optimism that's throwing me off :D). I'm especially happy you liked the characterization - and I agree wholeheartedly with you that Pansy became my favorite between the two (which I never expected to happen). God she was so much fun to write, I might have to jam her into another fic somewhere.
I haven't seen Mad Men and it's been on my list of shows to watch because I've heard nothing but good things about it. I probably based him off something I read, or maybe a combination of things I've read, kind of the typical self-centered guy who can do no wrong and believes he deserves everything. And reading your review made me realize that you're right, Pansy does do a lot more for Cho than Cho does for her - although I'd like to think that somewhere down the line Pansy does realize her potential.
Again, thank you so much for this review! It was anything but incoherent, and really made me feel better about posting this. xx Ariana