Reviews for The Darkness in My Veins
mistressinwaiting chapter 17 . 7/28/2014
Loved this chapter! The way the sisters were portrayed was flawless! And again, it was nice to see the Blacks as a functional family rather than somewhat functional like other fanfics
mistressinwaiting chapter 16 . 7/28/2014
The dead bird and silver dagger has me lost... but I like seeing cynagus as a worried father and actually concerned. Usually he's a cruel bastard in most fanfics but this is nice
Inkfire chapter 17 . 7/20/2014
Yay, in come the girls! :D The discussion between Cygnus and Bella was very interesting. The opening descriptions were very beautiful and nicely conveyed that feeling of ominous confusion, like an unclear menace lurking. The connection between Cygnus and Bella was nicely depicted, it was obvious they knew each other well, and apparently Bella did want to tell her father about her projects (if only partly), though she suspected that he would disapprove. The description of Bella through Cygnus' eyes was great at well, very vivid, it was lovely to show that he knew the gentler side of her that was unknown to most people, but feared that this side of her might come to be extinguished under the wrong influence—Tom's… I like the way Cygnus prompted Bella to talk, assuring her that whatever differences could be sorted through discussion. Bella's conviction and enthusiasm about her idea were very clear, and she was obviously disheartened to see that her father disapproved, although he had expected that… But for Cygnus, in the context especially, the idea sounded quite dangerous—and he didn't know half of it, of course. It's interesting that Cygnus used that article to try and open Bella's eyes—though to her it was hardly relevant, and she assured him that she wouldn't make the mistake of trusting the wrong people. (Girl, if only you knew!) The article itself was politically very interesting, the sharp quill visibly runs in the Skeeter family, but it clearly had content, although the will to spark readers' interest with implications of shady business and political failures was also there. I liked the insight about Ottaline Gambol, her background and her evolution (coming from a joke shop! I thought of the Weasley twins, made me smile…) She was obviously charismatic and inspiring, the focus on her success with the Hogwarts Express was interesting—but indeed she had lost her momentum, and gotten tricked with the alliance with Orion. I liked the contrast between the apparent stability brought by Orion, his success and recognition with the Order of Merlin, and the suspicions regarding the lack of any action towards Greyback, while focus was centred on frankly less important bills. Ending the article with a punch… that was pretty well handled ;) But Bellatrix was hardly touched, and remained focused on her own goals, certain that she was right. I just loved Cygnus' subtle allusion to the Riddle Club, and Bella assuring him that she would make him proud. Her father really is important to her, no matter how independent and determined she is.

Oh, in comes Viper! With his spider ;) Very cute. Bella's rage and exasperation towards the animal made me smile—quick temper, that girl has, and I imagine that there have been enough accumulated offenses to try her limited patience. Andromeda's description was very vivid and beautifully worded, just like Bella's and Narcissa's; I liked the way you highlighted the differences between the two sisters, but their common points as Blacks, and Andromeda's steely determination. It was also lovely to see the reference to Alphard and how it stung Cygnus to recognize that Narcissa's description was wonderful as well; I loved how calm and mysterious she was, seeking beauty and perception in all things. The mix of Rosier and Black in her and her reactions to her mother and her sisters were also fascinating, the whole was really intriguing—perhaps the most intriguing of the three, because indeed she is the most in-between and there is a lot more to her than meets the eye. Each of the sisters has traits that one wouldn't suspect at first glance, though. I like how glad Cygnus was that Narcissa had inherited his and his mother's eyes, not the Rosiers', and his knowing that she was quite Druella's daughter, as Bellatrix was rather his (and Andromeda more independent…). The part about Druella was quite saddening, with the mark of the years on her, the charm that remained, but the feelings and closeness long vanished between Cygnus and herself.

The bickering between Andromeda and Bella was nicely handled, with clear contrast in their reactions—Bella quick to anger and aggressive towards Viper, Andromeda trying to reason and make things more peaceful, then remaining quiet once Druella had intervened. Their mother was very stern and a bit harsh to them, she seems like she would be quite demanding regarding her daughters' proper behaviour. I also enjoyed the breakfast part, your mentioning that despite peaceful appearances, they each had their inner demons to face. All but Narcissa, who seemed so innocent and refreshing with her comments on the nice picture of Orion and Walburga (to Druella's dismay ;)), and her stating she would have loved a cousin. The Regulus incident was quite lovely, very sweet, though it led to a row between the mothers and distress for the children in the end. The ending of the scene was another sad note as it emphasized the distance between Cygnus and Druella and what a disheartening prospect it could be for them to be left alone…

Rita's POV! I didn't expect that at all, but it was very interesting and intriguing. The girl being eagerly watching for any information, and specifically focused on Bellatrix, her perspective is an outsider's POV while still bringing a lot of insight and questions. I liked the way you portrayed her at the beginning, feeling so close to a new life already, though she still had two years at Hogwarts for now—looking forward to the thrill of success and telling stories. I liked the way Rita viewed the Black sisters, the jealousy of course and the great curiosity and interest, as they were important and rather intriguing figures, and she could sense that something was going on regarding Bellatrix especially. The mentions of Rodolphus and the immature Prewett boys were nice, with Bellatrix haughtily ignoring the latter. I like how Rita noticed little things about the Blacks' attitude, how they seemed so somber and hardly triumphant despite Orion's success—her deductions were also nicely depicted—and how things were visibly tense between Andromeda and Druella. I also liked Rita, inside the train, contemplating about the troubling times they were going through, but quickly snapping back into action as she spotted Bellatrix. But instead of surprising her, she was the one surprised and despite Rita's apparent courage and her daring to actually subtly threaten Bellatrix, she didn't have the upper hand, but felt considerably threatened and uncomfortable in the presence of Bella, Rodolphus and Dolohov. I like that you had Bella use her baby voice there—chilling. And I *beamed* when Bella reused not only her father's information, but his exact wording with "I have my sources" :D She is SO daddy's girl, eager to be like him at his best, and prove herself. Love it. And I love that Rita already longed to be a small, inconspicuous thing that could observe without being seen or threatened, but although she wasn't an Animagus yet, she could spy with a simple charm. And what information she got, oh dear, she didn't even suspect the extent of what she had stumbled against, never mind how clear it was to her that this was very big indeed. Goodness, they met Voldemort already—and Bellatrix is so impressed she wants to call him Master. And she's adamant she doesn't want to lie to Cygnus, but doesn't have a choice… the irony of this, dear god. It's quite thrilling :D

A few typos and similar mistakes I spotted: "a trait so hidden that he was one of the very few people to discover and cherish", I think you should put "discover and cherish it", or else make the beginning "a hidden trait that… etc". Can't have "so… that" without using the "it". Besides there are "[the] raven-haired beauty assured", "for the ebony haired [girl] to appear" (if you don't add a noun, it sounds like a plural…), "Lestrange’s wish to see Bellatrix was granted when…" (was being granted, I'd say, since he was actually seeing her and at the same time there were the Prewetts drawing his attention; else it sounds like his seeing her is the consequence of hearçng the Prewetts at the same time), "the Ravenclaw found herself, looking sadly" (take off that comma), "the times had been… troubling" (missing dot at the end of the sentence), "she had been about to surprise the Slytherin girl" (she was about, I think), "halfway towards [the] Ravenclaw carriage", "she knew how [to] perform a Disillusionment Charm" and "than the Black just had" (Black).
Hpdwlotr24 chapter 17 . 7/18/2014
I loved this chapter! Each of the sisters were perfect I can't wait for more!
Tarpeia chapter 17 . 7/18/2014
The atmosphere in this chapter is one of my favourite. This grey, rainy day is extremely well-fitted for Cygnus's anxious reflections and the tense conversation that follows. It's so ironic that Bellatrix would take the same path as the Riddle Club, and he can do nothing to stop her: all he can do is warn her. He knows that any kind of pressure would have a counter-productive effect on the stubborn Bella.

I can't help feeling bad about Druella because she lives in ignorance and frustration - a frustration she takes off on everyone except Narcissa, who is her pride and joy. It must be one of the most important families who have been split and destroyed by Lord Voldemort - without him, this family might have been happy.

I really liked Viper's appearance - even though he provokes a row. He must have a wonderful bond with Andromeda. Also, Narcissa's with to have a baby cousin to play with is very endearing. Very well done for the article, by the way.

Now, it was very interesting to see things from Rita's point of view. Her determination is quite fascinating: she is not fearless, but she is able to keep her ground, control her emotions and even surpass her fear for the sake of her goal. With such an ambition and traits, it is not surprising she became an influential journalist, and later a biographer. She's also very perceptive, and her interest in the Blacks is motivated not only by ambition and curiosity, but also jealousy. She's quite brave to actually threaten Bellatrix. I really liked the way you described Rodolphus and Antonin - and the way Rodolphus is taken with Bella (while Antonin might be quite taken with Rita - something she should have perceived :D ). Also, the mention of the mysterious "Master" with which the chapter ends is a very subtle ending... But it's very good that you've added lyrical passages as well: such as Rita's reflection on the nature around Hogwarts.

Really, this chapter is remarkable. I can't wait for the next one! Thank you for this treat, and also for your kind words, hon. :) Kisses!
Inkfire chapter 16 . 6/18/2014
Hey again :) Another part I already knew, but which was still very enjoyable to reread, with the highly ominous atmosphere, the beautifully described night and the tension in the air all throughout the interaction between Cygnus and Tom, or rather Lord Voldemort. The opening was really beautiful, such a bleak scenery, yet very poetical. The atmosphere was quite fairytale-like, a lovely winter's night, yet the encounter that was to take place was certainly not fairytale-like—or it could be, as an encounter with a monster ;) Indeed celebrations seemed so very far away from Cygnus' considerations at the moment—the icy cold and the waiting drawing on before Voldemort's eventual arrival… I loved the way you portrayed Cygnus' shock at the sight of the man, the changes in him, and his understanding right away that only the darkest magic could have caused such changes, of course. The dialogue was really great—I love Cygnus' short, dry lines and Voldemort's mocking tones, Cygnus' flash of fury, and the icy, authoritative manner in which he let the other man know that he was no longer a little boy, but a man of the House of Black and he would not be disrespected. The subtle shift in Voldemort's attitude then was also nicely conveyed. I like how Cygnus couldn't but be chilled by the reminder of that fateful Halloween night, but he concealed how much the thought had plagued him with anxiety for all those years, and went straight to the point and acted calm and collected instead. Love his using to his advantage what he knew of Tom, what his observation skills had told him, to humiliate him. Voldemort's rage was clear, but indeed Cygnus had little to lose, and if he had this one opportunity to get at Voldemort, he was damn well going to take it… But Voldemort quickly threw him again with his comment about Alphard, and his conclusions were clearly accurate, though Cygnus still managed to deflect the issue and direct the subject towards Voldemort's agenda and how impossible it seemed that the man would succeed.

I really like the way you handled the rest of the encounter, with powerful tension—portraying Cygnus' alarm at the subtle menace of Voldemort's assumption, then cutting the scene on a powerful line, and switching to Cygnus after Voldemort's departure, burning with hatred. It was interesting that at that specific moment, he would recall that encounter with Dumbledore, and how the old man had offered him help, but truly he had never bothered to help him or to actually stop Tom before it was too late. The very obvious gentleness and soft approach only highlighted all the more the fact that Dumbledore had proved unable to help him at all. Cygnus' crazed laughter was a chilling touch, and I love the way you portrayed his fury at Dumbledore and the deceiving nature of his caring behaviour, the parallels between Tom and Dumbledore's charismatic natures and the fact that the whole of the wizarding world was suspended between the two were very nicely handled as well. Quite eloquent—and it made a smooth transition into Tom's current plans, the analysis of the families' probable stances regarding him… and the roles of the members of the Club, Cygnus first of all. Such lies they would have to tell, to lead Voldemort to power when Cygnus wanted nothing less than that, and yet the worst was yet to come, with Bellatrix. Loved the assessment of Bellatrix's nature, Cygnus' lucidity despite his obvious affection, the difference between her attitude and the ones of other children her age and the fact that his sadistic streak in him would be used and nurtured by the Dark Lord, all because of Cygnus' mistake. It was all so chilling. And so was the ending, of course, mysterious and ominous :)

Love!
Inkfire chapter 15 . 6/15/2014
Hey! :) Well, it was very nice rereading this. Like I mentioned before, I liked that bit about Hufflepuff colours mixed to the usual Black style. The evolutions of Cygnus and Druella on the one side, Orion and Walburga on the other were nicely depicted, with all the changes in the family—it was very bittersweet that although Cygnus and Orion were still estranged, their children turned out to be close. Lovely part about Sirius and Bellatrix, very cute, it made me smile. However, the biggest differences were now between Walburga and Druella and the hostility there were very obvious and quite powerful, flaring at the first occasion—whereas Cygnus and Orion were handling together as far as politics were concerned, so they had to at least be on speaking terms and able to cooperate, if in an impersonal way.

As I told you before (again! ;)), the politics parts were really fascinating. I chuckled at that little bit about the game of Creaothceann (wow, I spelled this P) at the beginning, but then, as you said yourself, the atmosphere grew much more charged. The tensions in the wizarding community and their factors of origin were very clearly and interestingly conveyed, with, of course, the focus on psychology and the reasonings that caused tensions and set the roots for conflicts—with goblins, and most of all with werewolves, who *were* wizards, couldn't identify with/as any other community, yet were rejected. You depicted Greyback's figure in a more interesting way than what we see in canon, showing how he played on the werewolf's community hardships—which is only what Remus told us, except that afterwards Greyback was portrayed as pretty much a mindless beast. Here we see the manipulations and the way he gained so much influence, very good. And naturally, it was a catch-22—as always with such situations, the rash acts of minorities only strengthens the rejection towards the whole of the community, which made said minorities' voices all the stronger. Completely realistic, sadly. And those issues were all it took to add disruptions to the already fragile balance in the system, and cause a schism—of course, in such a context, the Black family really had to remain united…

The scene between Orion and Arcturus was pretty nicely handled, love Orion's shock and Arcturus' sharpness, the dialogue was pretty good—the parts about Sirius especially. It was interesting to see that Arcturus, as the Paterfamilias, had to assess Sirius as a worthy and magical heir—makes sense—, and that he was quite satisfied indeed, due to Walburga taking her children's education so very seriously. Indeed, the children's magical abilities were another pretext for jabs between Walburga and Druella ;P And it's only natural that the presence of the children would make it much easier to rekindle relations with the elders of the family at least, grandmothers tend to dote. You really showed that in Melania, her pride was obvious. I laughed at the jab about the Crabbes ;) But the ending gave a much more ominous feel, nice foreshadowing for the Dark Lord's return, and I appreciated Orion's perceptiveness, he would be quite observant indeed! )

There were a few off bits in sentences, here:

"dècor" is written with the other accent, "décor";

in a few cases I thought there should be "the": "the loss of (the) friendship", "much to (the) frustration of", "in (the) most severe way possible", "reintroduce (the) game of Creaothceann", "(the) acquisitive tendencies of (the) magical community", "a major split in (the) magical community", "pushing (the) magical population on the edge", "(the) magical community split into two", "the headlines of (the) Daily Prophet", "Walburga took (the) education and magical training"

same with "to" with "seemed to have learned (to) appreciate each other" and "forced the men of the family (to) cooperate"

a few comma things, some parts felt like they should be separated by two commas or else have none at all: indeed in "it was, indeed lucky", "who also happened to carry the title of Paterfamilias"; there should be no comma after "although", but one after "In an attempt to preserve this sudden revival of familial affection", and I would also separate some adjectives by a comma like "random, innocent witches and wizards" and "a tall, distinguished looking wizard" but for that I'm not sure.

I also had tense doubts about "they once shared" (they had once shared?) and "having had missed" (just having missed?). "to the extend" should be "the extent", and "as very well you knew" as you knew very well, I think?

Sorry! I went full-blown comma-crazy proofreader on your arse. XD
Tarpeia chapter 16 . 6/14/2014
I love the atmosphere of this chapter. Christmas is supposed to be the time of joy and family reunion, yet for Cygnus, it announces a tragic crack in his family - something he can neither prevent nor fix. The scene describing his conversation with Tom is powerful, their mutual hatred and veiled jabs very ominous. I like how Cygnus refuses to bend to him, to play by his rules, how he demands to be respected as a Black, and while Tom dominates the situation, he isn't insensitive to this pride.

Like the last chapter, this one presents a clever view of the politics in the current wizarding world and the way Tom pulls the strings while remaining hidden and building himself a new name and reputation. I particularly appreciate your reflections on Dumbledore. Indeed, Cygnus is too sharp and aware of manipulation to fall for Dumbledore's passive tricks. His mirthless laughter perfectly conveys his emotions and is totally understandable.

It's very sad that Cygnus ends up having to give up his beloved first-born daughter; he's bound to settle the debt without ever being able to confide. The pressure he experiences is tremendous and can never get better. The last paragraph describing his trance-like ritual is hauntingly beautiful. Truly brilliant chapter!
Ink Stained Quill chapter 16 . 6/13/2014
Hehe :D I love how well this is progressing! 3

Ink
Tarpeia chapter 15 . 6/12/2014
This chapter is wonderfully rich. It contains serious political reflections (the werewolf movement - very cleverly developed!), a sense of foreboding (Cygnus's somber airs), the reunion of the Black family and the alliance, but also some precious humor. I can't stop laughing at Sirius and Bellatrix's first "fight" - so symbolic! It's only fitting that they both fascinate and enfuriate each other. I love how Sirius is accustomed to attention and doesn't take kindly to being ignored (or how he enjoys Melania's praise, for instance). Druella and Walburga's arguments are just as amusing. We have another premonition in the form of Narcissa's peacock. :) And while Arcturus's arrival isn't exactly funny, I like this man's sharp and slightly ironic personality; he truly elicits respect, but his company is one that most people would enjoy. It was very good as well to see Melania express her pride for her son - something he might have lacked in his younger years. So odd to think that Lucretia is technically no longer a Black and therefore doesn't participate in their meetings - she is a very clever woman whose help could be truly useful.

All in all, I love this entry into the new arch and am excited for the new chapters to come! Not only excited, though - I have a feeling of foreboding at Cygnus's grimness and apprehend the appearance of a particular character we haven't seen for a number of chapters...
Hpdwlotr24 chapter 15 . 6/11/2014
I'm so glad this story wasn't abandoned! I can't wait for these new characters to grow!
Tarpeia chapter 14 . 6/11/2014
Ce poème est d'une beauté exquise. Sa tristesse pénètre tous les recoins de mon coeur. Quelle belle transition entre les deux parties de ces Chroniques!
Guest chapter 14 . 6/10/2014
Day made. So so glad you're continuing this! I can't wait to see what you do with these characters!
Please.Insert.Name chapter 13 . 4/22/2014
I really like how you've created this world. It's so real and could be a prequel to the books themselves.

The Black family curse theory is interesting, Walburga could produce a squid and they hush it up. However, I'm curious how she has her other children considering the circumstances of this one. It makes more sense for Sirius to be this child and that is why she hates him.

The fact that Orion is getting protective gives me hope.

And that hope is realised, thank goodness all is not lost! I got ridiculously happy at his declaration – if you could call it that, not traditionally romantic.

I've said it lots of times, but you have done a magnificent job on this story. I have not read something so skilfully crafted or as well executed as this story. I do hope that you continue your work, as this site needs more authors like you. I really do think you should look to write your own work – if you don't already – as like I said previously you have so much potential and are the best writer I've came across.

Thank you for such an amazing fic, and I'm definitely in favour of more.

Jen
Please.Insert.Name chapter 12 . 4/22/2014
It's funny that Grimmauld Place is holding a meeting of the Slytherin Pureblood families when later it will be the Order – sorry, just a tad amusing.

I don't fully understand why they don't walk away. Does divorce not exist? This is painful to read, in a good way though. Your writing depicts their breakdown perfectly, and in the end I feel sorry for both parties. Orion for trying to make up for his father's disapproval and Walburga wanting a family like Cygnus and to know what it is to feel love. I also feel sorry for her parents for knowing that this was going to happen and being unable to prevent it.

It gets cheerier, right?

However, congratulations on an exquisite chapter. Do you write stories other than fanfiction? You have great potential as a novelist.
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