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Key to the Past

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Review of chapter "Vanishing Dreams" from Josette
Review:
A very well written story. I look forward to reading more.
Review By [Josette] • Date [14 Apr 14] • Rating [10 out of 10]
Review of chapter "Vanishing Dreams" from AllenPitt
Review:
Sorry for delayed review, very busy at work. Huh. At last, Faith is awake, kinda/sorta ok, the Council is there to help, and they somewhat know what Voldemort is up to. Maybe he wants to become a Sivin? Or thinks it's a demon that can be summoned? Anyway... we know more now. Things must be nuts back in Sunnydale-remains of the scoobies + maybe Angel are all that's left to fight the Mayor. All this, and Buffy still has to study. Life is just unfair or something.
Maybe Faith knows something, i.e. where the Death Eaters hang out, that kind of thing?.... It'll also be interesting to see what the Council wants to do now. Get Faith back to America?
Comments from author:
No need to apologise for having things to do other than read/review fan fiction. Though... I have to say I probably would have dropped you an email to check that you're okay in a bit if I hadn't heard from you - I've obviously got too used to you reviewing.

It's doubtful that they'll want her in Sunnydale right now, despite the lead up to a season finale happening back there. After all, the Council knows that werewolves (likely those who took her before) are in the area and asking about Slayers whereabouts. If they choose to take her away from Hogwarts, it'll most likely be a new assignment. Though even then it'll be hard for them to designate anywhere as safe from wizards with Voldemort's followers attacking Muggles worldwide and having, not only known contacts with those who could tell them about her, but also knowledge about Buffy's transformation.

And yeah... just like in Sunnydale, unfortunately her schoolwork doesn't go away despite what's going on.
Review By [AllenPitt] • Date [5 Apr 14] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Vanishing Dreams" from Keshkreature
Review:
Good luck with real life! Thank you so much for not leaving us on a cliff-hanger! I'm loving the new Faith interaction, and I'm looking forward to reading more when you have the time to write it!
Comments from author:
I'm glad it didn't feel like a cliffy. I was a little worried that I was acting contrary to my intentions by ending it part way through a conversation... but carrying on would have made the chapter even more epic. I'm also thrilled that Faith came across well (it's always hard to get a new character feeling right). I'll try to get back to this sooner rather than later.
Review By [Keshkreature] • Date [1 Apr 14] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Vanishing Dreams" from mscecilyunderwood
Review:
Thanks so much for the update! Don't worry your loyal readers will still be here even if you take a much needed break. I smiled at how you explained Lupin's outward appearance and Buffy's misconceptions about it. It made me smile that on what he felt about Buffy's fashion sense, seems like "Thank Heavens my daughter didn't inherent my lack of that!" And nice touch on giving her her own vault. Back when the series was airing I felt bad for Buffy because her hero gig doesn't really provide her with enough time to develop marketable skills and interfered with any hope of her getting a fulfilling professional career of any kind. I really felt how down she was during her stint with the Doublemeat Palace (no offense to service workers, I have respect for them) because her character on the show has smarts --SATs of 1430-- and should have been interning/working at any Fortune 500 company. At least in the british wizarding world of your making she has more than a penny to her name (or was it quid)!

I'm thinking the Slayer's essence, which is particularly strong in Buffy was the foremost reason for the nullification of the Dark Mark. Sineya has already claimed Faith as her daughter and evil dared to claim her. I think the Slayer essence fought the last vestiges of the darkness/evil in Faith, which is the Dark Mark itself. Harry's magic somehow amplified Buffy's potent magical core I think to counteract the spell and effect of the Dark Mark. And whoah it was so potent everyone in Voldemort's lair felt it. It would be good if Buffy can do the same for Snape. For once she has a teacher who cares and knows her circumstance and doesn't regard her as trouble. Nice touch on twisting the taboo state of Voldemort's name. Instead of what's in the books, it enables him to actually eavesdrop on the persons talking about him. Voldemort is such a suspicious and devious wizard.

Harry sadly still has a long way to go in growing up. How ironic was it that Ginny, years younger than him understands things so much better? Well as they say scientifically, women do tend to mature faster than men psychologically.

For me yes fairytales in the Potterverse have basis on reality. As example were the deathly Hallows. Even in real life fairy tales, children's limericks, legends and myths all have real life basis, sometimes bloody and dark too.

It's troubling that Voldemort covets the slayer and the sivin. Voldemort has 2 obsession: power & immortality. He's a powerhouse already as a wizard. Add that to the power and immortality of the slayer essence and the abilities of the sivin, he'll be unstoppable. I really like the direction you're taking with this story.

At last a Head Watcher who's humane enough unlike a certain someone we all love to hate--Travers. Unless you decide to flip the coin and add a mix of shady and greedy faction within the Watchers' ranks.

As always I love the details, the attention you've given to your story. It's not a bother if it's wordy, you can just go back in the future and edit away to your liking. It is often said that when one writes he should write unmindful of anything else--not syntax, not grammar, no synonyms-jjust letting the words flow form his pen or keyboard. He can just go back to polish it once everything was put out there. So no biggie on being wordy :)

Thanks so much!
Comments from author:
To me it's actually a little strange to think of this story being linked to the taboo spell or deathly hallows myth - both these aspects of the story were decided upon long before the last book came out (and then it's taken me this long to get to the point where I could give my versions). Perhaps that in itself was one of the reasons I never liked the later HP books - I started writing this after OotP was released and so by the time books 6 and 7 were out I had already created my own versions of the things JKR was explaining (which... unsurprisingly I liked better).

The Dark Mark responding to his name was an idea that was being kicked about a bit back when I was first writing this as a reson that no one would say it, so unfortunately I can't take the credit for the idea. And I've always been of the opinion that within many (most) old tales is a degree of truth, even if the truth is just that it's dangerous to go alone into the woods and they forget to say that not all the wolves which might hunt you down are animals.

Remus' 'disguise' well... again that came from reading HP discussions. I never believed that his family could be poor (though they aren't intended to come across as super rich). Who else would have provided a house in Hogsmede reserved for transformations, complete with a tunnel hidden by a rare tree? I can't see the school shouldering that cost... so yeah. His parent's had money and he gets by hunting down rare ingredients.

Part of the money problem that Buffy had in the series was her conflict with the Watchers Council. Even given that version I suspect if she'd been toeing the line better they would have provided funds so that she didn't need a menial job (probably far more than she got working at Doublemeat). Unfortunately she never thought to ask for her own funds when she was arguing for the restoration of Giles' (and it's not like they were going to offer).

Here the Watchers are intentionally different, generally more caring about the Slayers, but that doesn't mean there aren't going to be some who are self serving. I can't imagine any institution, however benevolent, managing to escape that. It has a heirarchy... and whenever you have those with differing degrees of power there will be those who seek more. But, yeah... while I don't intend to turn the institution as a whole into something cruel/thoughtless, that doesn't mean we (or Buffy) will always like their actions (as seen in their choice not to tell her about Faith going for the mirror or the werewolves in LA).

You're very acurate in saying that Voldemort is obsessed with power and immortality (have you figured out how he intends to acchieve those?)

Thank you for leaving such a thoughtful review. It's useful to have a reason to reflect on what I'm writing and to know how it's coming across.
Review By [mscecilyunderwood] • Date [1 Apr 14] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Now Leaving Sunnydale" from wswords
Review:
I thought the story was getting shaky for a while there but I want you to know I think you pulled through it and are continuing to write a good story.
Comments from author:
Thank you! It's always great to hear from a new reviewer and I'm glad the story's still good (or getting good again). I'd love to know what/where the story got shaky if you have the time to let me know. After all I'll only improve if I know what I'm doing wrong (well... and I'm a glutton for criticism - critical comments are often those I enjoy most).
Review By [wswords] • Date [31 Mar 14] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Vanishing Dreams" from NutsContract
Review:
Yay an update!!! And more of the mystery is unraveling! I understand why you feel the need to take a break, considering how long the story is and how, sometimes, life gets in the way. I'm sorry that the reviews have died down a bit since the big reveal, but we're still all here waiting for the next chapter!! Thanks for your update, and I look forward to reading more from you.
Comments from author:
Whoops... that ramble in A/N wasn't meant to come across quite as whiny as I realise it did (it's so easy to forget that tone isn't conveyed by text). I was really just trying to say that it seemed my plan of getting here where many of the questions/concerns are resolved was working (without it coming across as if I didn't want to hear any readers did have). I know, personally, that I'm useless at making the effort to review unless I think I have something meaningful to impart/ask, so I'd never be hypocritical enough to get grumpy about having less comments when I was trying to make it so there's less questions to ask.

I hope to be back sooner rather than later! Writing this is getting kinda exciting for me as we've passed the point where it diverges from being essentially a 'Buffy insertion into OotP' fic to a fully AU Harry Potter world... Hopefully I can pull it off.
Review By [NutsContract] • Date [31 Mar 14] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Vanishing Dreams" from ChaosLady
Review:
I'm glad Faith is awake. Excellent update!
Comments from author:
Thanks! I do feel bad that I've been so mean to her... and really hope it hasn't come off in a char bashy way...
Review By [ChaosLady] • Date [31 Mar 14] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Vanishing Dreams" from Rich
Review:
A very good chapter overall. I liked your portrayal of Faith, including the signs of PTSD; it would be totally unrealistic for someone to go through all of that and not be affected. The information on the Sivin is interesting - maybe that's the usual result of a Slayer/animagus combination, and maybe the reason they're considered mythical is that there hasn't been one of those since Rowena ? I look forward to finding out.
Comments from author:
Thank you!

I'm glad Faith came across well. She was hard to get right, and I wasn't certain that the mix of the cocky girl we're used to and the vulnerability from her PTSD would work without seeming a bit schizophrenic. Buffy's transformations is really the only big question left isn't it? (well that and what's going on with our big bad) It will be discussed in the coming chapters.
Review By [Rich] • Date [31 Mar 14] • Rating [9 out of 10]
Review of chapter "Vanishing Dreams" from starwolf
Review:
boy you writers are such comment whores, I mean so ready to bask in the continuing enjoyment of your long suffering fans. well this was a great chapter, questions answered, questions posed. it looks like its not Buffy's fault she can't master the animagus spell, huh so something slayer related is going on. I'll be waiting patiently till uni lets up the pressure an you can continue. study hard, continue to write well. thanks
Comments from author:
Yup. Will write for feedback!

Well, to be fair I'd probably write anyway... Okay... I admit it... I'm just tricking you guys into stoking my ego.

Thanks, yet again, for doing your part!

Hopefully the questions posed don't feel too pressing... what is going on with the Animagus/Slayer/Sivin? Well that will be elaborated upon when I get back to writing (or to writing something other than my dissertation).

Edit: oops, just realised how whiny my ramble sounded... sorry it wasn't intended to come across as complaining about a reduction in reviews - I'm always amazed that so many people take the time to leave one. I guess I need to start re-reading my rants better before I post them and remember that tone is not conveyed by text.
Review By [starwolf] • Date [31 Mar 14] • Rating [10 out of 10]
Review of chapter "When the Sleeper Bleeds" from Keshkreature
Review:
Oh! Was it the mention of Voldmort's name that brought the mark to the surface? Still loving it :)
Comments from author:
Nice catch! An explanation of what happened is in the next chapter!
Review By [Keshkreature] • Date [18 Mar 14] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "When the Sleeper Bleeds" from ChaosLady
Review:
Those two chapters had me on the edge of my seat!
Comments from author:
I'm glad! That's about as much as a writer can hope for. I hope you enjoy the next one.
Review By [ChaosLady] • Date [17 Mar 14] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "When the Sleeper Bleeds" from dreameralways
Review:
Well, hopefully that means Buffy will be able to reach her now. Curious if they drove out the horcrux in Harry, if that's why his scar changed, or if that was something else. Still an enticing story. I look forward to more.
Comments from author:
The explanation of what the Dark Mark 'exorcism' (as starwolf called it) means and the potential for this discovery is coming in the next chapter. I'm glad that it remains interesting despite my original premise being resolved, hopefully I can keep it so as Voldemort's plans progress.
Review By [dreameralways] • Date [17 Mar 14] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "When the Sleeper Bleeds" from Mkay
Review:
I just discovered this story and I have enjoyed it quite a bit. I've read lots of BtVS/HP crossovers and it was refreshing to read yours, because so many of your ideas are original. I'm looking forward to the next update. Keep up the good work : )
Comments from author:
Thanks, I'm glad I've managed to keep it feeling original. Hopefully I'll continue to do so. I have fixed ideas of where this is going which I haven't read elsewhere... although I have to say, writing a HP/BtVS cross made me largely stop reading them - I got too analytical about how the worlds worked - so someone else might have already done something similar.
Review By [Mkay] • Date [16 Mar 14] • Rating [10 out of 10]
Review of chapter "When the Sleeper Bleeds" from starwolf
Review:
ok lets go:

rose are red
violets are blue
the Dark mark was exorcized
but the method was eewww!

sorry the best I could do. Maybe take your own advisee, have Buffy read the Quibbler more.
very good chapter. Although I still think if Rowena magicaly stored herbs, they would be preserved come hell or high water. :P
thanks
Comments from author:
Lol I hadn't even noticed it was Rhyming Review week (I rarely end up on the front page and the banner newsfeed at the top is still asking about email addys). Thanks! I love it! I guess the 'exorcism' was meant to be a bit icky... these things tend to require it.

I wonder if I could think up enough suitably ridiculous headlines (within the HP 'verse) to have Buffy reading the Quibbler. It would be hilarious though. Perhaps it could claim that one of the Death Eater attacks was instead some kind of mating ritual of non-existent creatures... Oh god... this might actually work. I know just which of the attacks I've considered that would work for that. Although... it doesn't really change that all the details of happenings outside the school are coming from the papers... they'd just be coming from a different paper.

Perhaps there would have been methods to ensure herbs retained their effectiveness... I kinda prefer the idea that there are things even magic can't indefinitely combat. But of those which need to be used while fresh, why would Rowena be keeping a magically preserved supply when there's a greenhouse where she can source it from just outside? Just as foods change their flavour when preserved (and dependant on the method of preservation) so I also see potions ingredients altering in properties if dried etc. I mention this in passing in Uses of Wormwood.

The other reason there wasn't enough supply of antidote was that ANY instance of wizards getting caught in Creeping Sonnostrega is rare (the plant has been destroyed almost to extinction in places wizards frequent for obvious reasons - this is why it took Sirius and Remus so long to find enough roots) and so this many people being affected at once is unheard of.
Review By [starwolf] • Date [14 Mar 14] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "When the Sleeper Bleeds" from AllenPitt
Review:
hm. Maybe that's burned away the connection to Voldemort? Maybe Faith will finally wake up. Still.. even if V. is beaten, Buffy won't have much to do with the wizarding world, I'd think. She won't be skilled enough to get a magical job, and even worse, she's got little respect for them as is. Not to mention the whole sacred duty deal. Still, a slayer with magic, she might last a lot longer than otherwise.
The scoobies must really be struggling back in Sunnydale. though I suppose if they think of it, they don't need a slayer to build a great honking bomb...
Good point that she can't go to college, too far behind in things, plus, pointless. Maybe she could rise up in the hierarchy of the council? 2 slayers now, she could be the 'senior slayer', who has lots of magic at her disposal...
Comments from author:
Yup, neither the skills to get a good magical or muggle job... not that she ever really had a chance to get either what with that pesky sacred duty. As we know from the end of S3 - accepting this fact is difficult for Buffy.

I was recently re-reading some of an earlier discussion we had about the Mayor - as you mentioned then, the problem with the scoobies dealing with him alone is that it was Buffy who thought of the bomb... and Faith that provided the means of drawing him into an enclosed space where it would do the most good. Without those two factors there's little they can do about him... which leaves them in trouble. We're not quite there yet at least - I believe early may is on the very edge of American high school graduation dates?
Review By [AllenPitt] • Date [14 Mar 14] • Not Rated
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