Title: One for Each Night Author: that dark-haired girl
Source: Harry Potter Character(s): Various
Rating: T Genre(s): General
Chapter(s): 8 Status: Complete
Author’s Synopsis: Or, the Eight Fics of Hanukkah. Multiple pairings, mostly post-war/next-gen. *COMPLETE*
Welcome Readers, we’re 3 days away from Christmas. Three days. Now, I have other reasons to be excited about this but it is exciting to be 3 days away from the holiday, to be spending some time with family (even if it’s stressful), and everyone around me is brimming with good cheer for the holidays. It’s infectious! However, 3 is also the number of holiday fan fics I get to review before the end of 2017. I have this review and two others before the end of the year, I’m kind of sad about it. Yet, I can start prepping for New Years and Valentine’s Day stories.
Ladies and gentlemen, I am your reviewing host, the Fan Fic Reviewer; here to review the good, the bad, and those that should never exist in fan fiction. Today I present this collection of one-shots written in response to a Hanukkah / holiday challenge. Each chapter was written for each night of Hanukkah and each chapter is a one shot with different focuses and different characters. Since it is a collection of one-shots, I’m going to tackle each chapter individually.
The featured characters are George Weasley and Verity. George has divorced Angelina and has an unofficial relationship with Verity. It’s an interesting one-shot because it focuses on Verity’s perspective of this undetermined relationship. Verity clearly enjoys the relationship with George but is not happy with the unstated status of their relationship – is it okay for George’s daughter to call her “mummy?”, is she expected to join George for Christmas with his family? These are the typical questions someone in an undefined relationship would wonder; where are the lines?
It’s not exactly a cheery story but it is revealing and filled with the deep conflicting emotions of someone trying to figure out where they stand in the relationship. There isn’t really a resolution or a confrontation, it’s just left hanging; neither is bad, if anything it helps to convey how Verity feels in the story; unfulfilled.
This one-shot focuses on Percy and Audrey Davies. It’s been seven years since Percy lost Penelope and he’s starting to become infatuated with his co-worker Audrey Davies. It’s something that comes on slowly – noticing her habit of chewing on her lip, noticing her hair, comforting her, having an argument about the War Memorial, etc. It builds up over time and acuminates with him giving her a Christmas present on Christmas Day and kissing her cheek.
This one shot is about moving on after a loved one’s death and building a beginning with someone new. It’s not that Percy has forgotten Penelope, Percy actually tries to hold on to things that remind him of Penelope – old photos, a pillow that still has her scent, etc. Instead, it’s that subconsciously he’s ready to move on romantically, thus his attraction to Audrey.
It’s a sweet one shot.
It also ties back to Chapter One by making mention of George and Verity’s relationship and Percy thinking that it was time for them to make it official.
This one-shot is on Harry and Ginny after the Battle for Hogwarts. It’s really brief but it’s a good representation of the mourning and grief felt by those who survived and are celebrated. It touches on this between status that Harry is constantly caught between – hero yet still a child, celebrated but never sits at the head of the table, recognized but not the real reason people are grateful. It is this state of limbo piled on by survivor’s guilt that Harry has to overcome. He finds that he has Ginny beside him when he needs someone.
I’m not a Ginny / Harry fan but the theme of the one shot is thought-provoking and emotional.
This one shot focuses on Pansy Finch-Fletchley as she has abandoned her pureblood family to marry the mudblood Justin. It’s a very different perspective because there are signs of Pansy’s upbringing in how she does view herself as superior to others – not Justin – in some ways, but not the need to lord it over them. Plus, there is the changes in her lifestyle that she has accepted and adopted – cut off from her family, going to market for food, etc.
Most of the chapter follows Pansy during the holiday season as she’s pregnant – fairly quiet – but it picks up when she and Justin attend a holiday party hosted by Asteria. At the party, Pansy is confronted by her younger brother Arden who disparages and shames her for turning her back on her pureblood lineage to marry Justin. Despite their familial ties, he verbally abuses her until Justin steps in to defend her. Arden tries to goad Justin into attacking him with magic and see how many of the guests would side with a mudblood over a pureblood.
This chapter is gut wrenching as Pansy realizes how much she has lost by choosing love over her family. She had been able to protect herself under the illusion that her brother would still hold on to his brotherly affections for her, but those illusions are crushed at Asteria’s party.
Still, despite the low point of the chapter, it ends with optimistically with Justin seeing to his wife and taking her home.
This is one of the few non-linear chapters. This one has less of a focus but instead show snippets of a holiday night. One snippet is Luna Potter recollecting a moment when she snogged Scorpius Malfoy and wonders if he thinks back on the kiss like she does. Another snippet is Victoire Weasley worrying about the possibility of her being a squib since her powers had yet to manifest. The last snippet is Neville Longbottom knocking back drinks while waiting for his girlfriend at the Leaky Cauldron; during his wait, he makes conversation with the barmaid – Hannah Abbott – and he starts to build an attraction to her that he passes as “just the drink.”
This chapter is okay. The parts are okay but they don’t really link so they feel disjointed. I enjoyed the Neville portion more, even if it ended unsatisfactorily.
This chapter focuses on Hermione and Ron’s relationship. It’s less of an actual story and more of an examination of their relationship and how even if no one else gets how it works, it fits for them.
It serves as a good argument to anti- Hermione / Ron fans (me!) by essentially saying, “It doesn’t have to make sense to you, it works for the characters.”
There isn’t much else to the chapter.
This is the other non-linear written chapter. Everything takes place at the same party but the perspectives change. First is Faolan and Lily’s interaction where Faolan begins to feel an attraction to the girl that is not his girlfriend. Second is Theresa and James where James menacingly glares at Scorpius Malfoy until he stops dancing with Theresa and Theresa goes outside with James to enjoy the fresh air and snow. Finally, is the interaction between Scorpius Malfoy and Rose Weasley where Rose “saves” Scorpius from Theresa and Scorpius tries to suppress his attraction to Rose.
This chapter is better at tying in these three parts together as the interactions clearly interact and intersect. There isn’t much of a resolution for most of the parts (James and Theresa have a resolution) but there is the start of conflict and possible love conflicts between Faolan, Rose, Scorpius, and Lily. It’s an okay chapter but nearly as impactful as some of the others.
Like chapter two with Percy and Audrey, this is another one-shot that is about building a new relationship only now it’s with a dead lover’s twin. Anthony Goldstein visits the War Memorial and makes a stop by the Leaky Cauldron for drinks where he meets Parvati Patil. Nothing actually happens…almost, but Anthony kills the mood when he calls her “Padma.” Afterwards, Anthony and Parvati start over; start small.
First it’s exchanging owls, then a dinner at a pub, eventually Parvati joins Anthony and his family for Hanukkah, and in the end Anthony kisses Parvati. Nothing further but the beginning suggests that the relationship continued to develop to the point where they’re getting married.
This is another really good chapter that focuses on grief and moving on. Anthony keeps drawing comparisons between Parvati and Padma until he recognizes that he – in the present – wants Parvati, not the what-if future that can’t happen with Padma. Parvati also comes to terms with being the surviving twin when Anthony’s grandma opens up about her own story of losing her twin during World War II.
This is a chapter that has some hard hitting emotional moments but it ends optimistically; it leaves the impression that everything was going to be okay and these characters were moving on, not allowing their grief to hold them back.
Overall, this collection of one shots were interesting to read. I liked the fact that most of the chapters focused on different characters and a lot of them were side characters or ones that were only mentioned in the epilogue. It was refreshing.
I also liked the fact that even though each chapter did take place during the holidays, it didn’t strictly focus on the cheers of the holiday but on the emotional grief and frustrations individuals can go through during these times. It made these stories impactful, especially when it ended on an optimistic note. It’s a reminder that even in the most joyous times people can feel the worst, but those feelings won’t last forever eventually everything will be okay again; different, but okay.
Would I recommend this story? Yeah. I think the various characters and various one-shots will provide an interest to almost any taste. I think some of these one-shots can also provide springboards for brainstorming new stories, new plots. So, yes, I would highly recommend this story to Readers.
Stars: 8.5 / 10