Reviews for The Changeling
Guest chapter 11 . 10/16
That was amazing.
sbmcneil chapter 11 . 10/7
Excellent story! This is one of the first Slytherin Ginny stories that felt real. Her family didn't automatically hate her and she didn't become besties with Malfoy. She did what she had to do to survive.
The Parlor girls was an interesting group. It does seem like something the Slytherins would do. I like that Snape wasn't likable, but he still tried to help the students.
The relationship between Fleur and Ginny was well done. Ginny using her Slytherin cunning to befriend her sister-in-law instead of making an enemy. I wish there had been a bit more of Harry and Ginny, but overall very well done!
Completely Confunded chapter 4 . 10/1
Fucking hell, I should be studying for the damned act, and I'm reading this instead. Considering I started this story filled with intentions of skimming through it until I got fed up, this definitely surpassed my expectations as far as engagement went. The way you write is like syrup- it slides through your mind, leaving thick layers of gooey content that contain just enough detail for engagement while allowing one to slip through years of activity without the reader truly feeling strained by the reading. The OC's don't overpower me, that Ginny still seems to be building a relationship, comradery, with Harry definitely enticed me. That we do get to see Harry from the outside is definitely a change of perspective-which despite my initial belief it would deter me, proved shocking in it's grip. Aiyah, the only part having me curious is how you fit 7 more chapters. Though I guess I'll find out eventually, for now, I'm in need of some serious act math studying :'(
SableUnstable chapter 11 . 9/30
I should have reviewed this before I moved on to the sequel, but honestly, I couldn't wait to find out if there was more of this world and these characters. This is a stunning piece. Simply stunning. I adore Ginny so much, her strength that she doesn't see as strength, her bravery that she doesn't see as bravery. There's so much going on with all these characters, this whole situation, so many layers and intricacies that make them and it flawed and fumbling, powerful and perfect. Raw. Real and painful.

It's wonderful. Thank you for writing this story! I loved it. :)
arulynx chapter 11 . 9/25
I don't even know where to start. Maybe to begin with I just want to thank you for writing this story of Ginny. She never was one of my favourite characters, but you gave her so much depth, I really loved following her story as a Slytherin. The way you described her life and interactions in that house and her growing into it was so real. The sisterhood of Nymue was great and I really liked everything about that. So thank you again for this story!
eknae11 chapter 11 . 9/18
This was excellent. I picked it up and couldnt put it down. Its really a very different look at Ginny and i loved it.
al chapter 11 . 9/16
This is a masterpiece. O can totally see and feel this happening. Ginny's come a long way.
envirosue chapter 11 . 9/15
Unbelievably you so much. This is a story that will stay with me for a very long time
envirosue chapter 7 . 9/14
Thank you for this story. Ginny is my favorite character and you have done a marvelous job in capturing her strength and wit. This chapter really speAks to how she is isolated yet committed to others. She is a true leader here. It is a pleasure to read your story
Guest chapter 11 . 9/12
this was fucking perfect

i hope you know that
Nemrut chapter 11 . 9/6
So, I burned through this in the last few days and I have to say, it has been quite a while since I last enjoyed a Harry Potter fanfic this much.

The way I understand it, there are three stories planned, two of which are complete as of this point, the first one about Ginny through the years 1-6, culminating with the Battle of Hogwarts, than the period after the war and before her return to Hogwarts to finish year 7 and then the last story which has yet to be posted about year 7.

I think the way this story stands out to me is the way it handles the Harry Potter cast in general, in that it has an excellent handle on each and every character. Every person is pretty much their canon self. Malfoy, Snape, Fleur, the Weasley's, they're are all perfectly in character. I think this is pretty much the most perfect depiction of Draco Malfoy that I have yet to see in fanfiction. He is exactly as he is in the books, no dumber and no smarter. Ginny, of course is changed but not in a way that replaced her character with someone else entirely but rather that she is still Ginny, only changed through her different life experiences.

I didn't mention Harry, because him I felt the one changed the most, but also in a good way. With Ginny being a different character and thus actually a bigger influence on him did allow for some genuine changes in his character and an openness to reflect on himself and others in a different way than before. He is still a good character and distinguishably himself but a bit more developed.

The OCs, speak all the Slytherins and some Ravenclaws I actually really enjoined. I completely agree with Newcomb in that Antonia, the whole time, reminded me also of Ophilia Karait, only not as a cheap knock-off but rather based on the same character archetype, that of the immensely competent, cunning and mysterious older Slytherin girl.

Here is a confession of mine: I fucking love the immensely competent, cunning and mysterious older Slytherin girl archetype. Honestly wish there were more of her pulled off competently. Her taking Ginny under her wing is something I was super happy about.

As such, her presence was enjoyable whenever she appeared and she never overstayed her welcome as she's used sparingly. (Here I confess that I also was shipping her with Ginny, but it never broke the story for me as the Harry x Ginny thing is being built up rather organically)

Ginny has two friend-groups in Slytherin, one being her two best friends Smita and Tobias and the other being the girls of the parlor and I find that while the latter group may not have been developed as much as I would have liked, I still appreciated each and every character.

The friendship between Tobias and Ginny worked really, really well for me. It's true that Tobias is not a groundbreaking character, however, there is such a profound sense of friendship in the way that he interacts with Ginny, that he actually became one of my favorite characters in the fic. I thoroughly enjoyed his interaction with others and the interesting parallel he served to Snape. In a way, it was very subtle and clever critique of Snape. Tobias and Snape serve very similar roles, only Tobias never allowed himself to be broken and twisted by life as Snape and never took it out on the helpless by being incredibly bitter and mean-spirited.

The story also had me genuinely fooled that Tobias and Ginny had grown apart, that what happened to their group, the incident at the Ministry and Smita's absence were enough to break apart their group, especially with Ginny spending less and less time with him, clearly not knowing how to handle this. So much so, that I it was an actual surprise that Ginny told Neville that Tobias had been spying for them. I guess my only complaint in that regard is that I wish there had been a hint or something to foreshadow this, or maybe there was and I missed it.

Which leads me to Smita and while she is the less impactful person, her role I actually enjoyed even more. Yeah, her character doesn't leave much of an impression, I honestly had already forgotten her name but it's so rare to see such a realistic portrayal of the development of friendships in a medium where friendships are celebrated to the point of giving you unrealistic expectations of them.

Sometimes, people grow apart, for better or for worse. Smita was an incredibly important person for Ginny for a few years but that's simply not something that necessarily will always stay that way and that's fine as well. There wasn't a big fight or an ideological rift between the girls, just different priorities and life took them on different roads. Sometimes friendships can't be saved and that's not necessarily a bad thing. I honestly loved this.

The Parlor was something that I also loved. It's a clever invention, one that feels particularly fitting into the Harry Potter mythos and works exceedingly well in the story as it serves to explore Ginny's characters in a multitude of ways, as both a regular member desperately seeking advice, companionship and a place to belong and later as a leader who is responsible for each and every single individual in it and is probably the thing I am looking forward the most in the third story, to see Ginny trying to rebuilt the Parlor, to invite new girls into it and see on whom she will ultimately pass the torch to.

In general this has been a great story exploring Slytherin, one of the best I have seen in fanfiction. There is no Slytherin wank, no bashing. Slytherin is not a "pit of snakes". It's not Game of Thrones with schoolchildren where every character is Littlefinger, Varys or Cersei. No senseless scheming or arbitrary ranks or whatnot. They are just kids for the most part, but it is still distinguishable from the rest due to its unique nature.

As a whole, Ginny has been an excellent character to use for this, genius even. Since she is a year younger, the story gives us a new cast to play with and at the same time, removes her from canon events enough that the focus is always on her journey and not necessarily derailing the plot, although the canon elements are still happening in the background and shaping her life. Ginny finding her place in Slytherin has been a gripping journey, one told expertly with not a spelling mistake in sight and with smart stylistic choices.

For example, I loved that her first year was basically a haze, as both her worldview being shaken and being controlled by Riddle had a tremendous impact on her, one that she couldn't shake for a while.

It was carving her own space with Quidditch, the life-line that the Parlor threw her and making friends with Tobias and Smita that ultimately allowed Ginny to get on her feet and finally claim her place in Slytherin, which was, on a whole, really satisfying to read.

Ron dressing in Slytherin colors to cheer on his sister was also one of the more heartwarming moments in HP fanfiction that I've seen in a while. It deserves mention that I also loved how her family reacted to her being in Slytherin, how they tried but their prejudices would get in the way at times and say thoughtless things but which they also ultimately were able to overcome.

As to the negatives, I guess I agree that there could have been a bit more characterization on the Parlor girls, although I guess that will come in the third story. Still, some more distinction among the girls outside of what they pursue wouldn't have hurt. And while I appreciated the story not having Ginny derail the plot by overtaking it, as this is very much a Slytherin Ginny story and not a Dark Lady Ginny story, I have to admit it's a bit weak that Ginny's influence on Slytherin hasn't really altered anything so far. Sure, I guess there will be a slightly more positive perspective on Slytherin as a whole, especially in the younger years, but the fact that Ginny and the additional Slytherins who stayed had virtually no impact on who died and who didn't is a bit weak, especially since Ginny had a device that was able to suck up all magic which, in hindsight, was a bit OP, way too good and ultimately still pointless. "I'll have twenty" indeed, that thing is probably the best magical device after the Hallows and better than the freaking cloak.

I liked that the Slytherins faced stark consequences for their bravery. There was death, injury and fallout from that, stuff that the second story explores in an interesting manner, only that the impact is really only felt by them, not by the plot at large, if that makes sense. Their impact is restricted to them alone, not the larger picture. Could have led to more or less deaths of canon, something like that. Make things better or worse and not have them stay exactly the same. Looking back, that is really disappointing.

The second story, while still interesting from start to finish, does get a bit overly angsty at times, especially Harry but at the same time, Harry's conflict with the Ministry is something that I really appreciate and found to be the most realistic I have seen and I am including canon in that. I quite like the trajectory that is being set up and I hope this will ultimately lead to Harry to becoming something other than Auror and that this will allow the story to throw off the last shackles of canon.

Snape (and I don't think there is any chance of Ginny naming any of her children after him, if they have any) has been handled really tastefully, I have to say. Also rather in character, he hasn't been glorified or bashed. Instead, there was nuance in the way the story used him and different characters saw him differently and all for good reasons. As I said earlier, Tobias is a nice contrast to Snape and while admittedly he wasn't in as extreme of a situation as Snape ultimately found himself, he managed to handle himself much better than Snape did at that age.

Characters in general haven't been whitewashed, the Malfoy's being great examples of that. Even after their turn, they didn't do a 180 but rather remained their slightly antagonistic, aloof selves who aren't suddenly super regretful and nice but rather awkward, distanced people who don't quite know what to do. Narcissa going "you might not have helped me but rather doomed me as a traitor if I'm still getting thrown into prison" was one of my favorite lines in the story. Not a lot of stories do that. Even Harry, he's not being treated as the next Merlin or something but rather the rock to the scissors that was Voldemort. Sure it was important but that doesn't mean they like him any more for it or value his input outside of the public perception of him. The fact that Harry is not leading the Ministry in any shape or form and rather has only some minimal influence that he has to carefully balance is fascinating and super believable.

I think, ultimately, that is the greatest strength of this story. It is so very grounded and mature that it never overextends itself and knows exactly what it is it wants to do and then efficiently does it. This is not a story that has been written on the fly but rather was meticulously planned and edited and the effort is shown and has paid off in every line.

Thank you so much for sharing this and I hope you're well.
jonnyo98 chapter 11 . 9/5
A wonderful piece of writing, thank you for writing it. I and many others have enjoyed the read.
Nightshade2412 chapter 11 . 8/27
I don't really know where to start in order to describe to you just how brilliantly written I think this story is and how big an impact it has had on me, but I'll do my best. You quickly dismissed my doubts about the plot and I have found myself fascinated by a character I never used to have any strong feelings about - little Ginny Weasley, who stuck her elbow in the butter when Harry spoke to her. I admired her bravery later on, but she was never a particularly interesting person. But now you have completely changed my perspective! Not only on Ginny but on Slytherins as a whole. I have always thought of myself as a Ravenclaw but I have never realised just how fascinating Slytherins can be (perhaps it is because of the mysterious Parlour girls that I now like them so much). Perhaps it is because nobody is entirely confined to one house's characteristics that I feel curious about what it is like to be one of them... I'll stick to Ravenclaw, but I have learnt some things about Slytherin that I never want to forget.

Moving on now to your masterful writing: the style with the present tense but (at least at first) the summarised format both sweeps me away into the story and allows it to remain a bit dreamlike and distant... I don't quite know how to say what I mean. It's very powerful. It also really comes into it's own in her sixth year when there is more detail, but you still manage to maintain mystery throughout, like the tattoo. I was wondering for ages what it would be and a part of me was a little worried that I would never find out. I think the spider was a very fitting choice after she had come such a long way. There is also the mystery surrounding Antonia. I like how Ginny grew to become similar to her because from the outside it is easy to forget that Antonia is only human, too. I think I will have to read this again before I understand all that she was trying to teach Ginny.

I also like how closely you stuck to canon. It kept the story about Ginny's development as a person and it was really interesting to see it from her point of view, things I hadn't considered like her relationship with Tom and the impact that continued to have. I often felt like I was reading the books again for the first time, sort of hoping that maybe things would turn out differently, like less people dying, though it didn't work that way. I even cried at Fred's death. It was also weird to remember that Ginny is the year below the trio. I sort of wish that you'd written the whole of the seventh year because this is Ginny's story, and it didn't start at the same time as Harry's so it shouldn't end then either I totally get why you didn't, considering the plot and how it would be impossible to top that climactic year, but I sort of wanted to see Smita again and have Ginny introduce more people to the Parlor and see them cope with the aftermath... well, at least there's a sequel, and when I'm grouchy tomorrow from being up past midnight reading, it will be all your fault!

Just thanks for writing this, I guess. And out of pure curiosity - you don't have to answer if you don't want to - is your real name Brenna?
e chapter 11 . 8/25
Goddamn that is a hell of a story. Just read the whole thing in a whirlwind of a day. Fantastic work
Murkatroyd chapter 11 . 8/24
This story has got quite possibly the most well-written character development I've ever seen, and a take on several unexplored aspects of canon, particularly Legilimency, that no one else I've seen on this site comes close to. I'm glad I found it when it was already finished. Well done.
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