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Reviews for What He Doesn’t Know

Grainne 2007.07.10 - 09:47AM 2: What He Doesn’t Know Signed
This is a beautiful, painfully realistic tale about the complexities of relationships and the subject of infidelity--not an easy thing to write, I imagine, but a real pleasure to read (this is my second time round). Thank you!

Pookah 2007.05.05 - 12:25AM 2: What He Doesn’t Know Signed
I enjoyed this. I don't know If I believe Snape would be in denial like that, but the joy of fan fiction is the many views of the characters one sees. Thanks for sharing your story.

sandstar08 2006.06.17 - 02:32AM 2: What He Doesn’t Know Signed
ouch. if snape was mine, i wouldn't be that ungrateful.. stupid wench. brilliant story though! can't wait to read the rest of your work!

Dani Di Marco 2006.03.10 - 08:06PM 2: What He Doesn’t Know Signed
Love the story. Poor Severus! My heart went out to him. Beautifully written.

talloaks 2005.11.26 - 08:46PM 2: What He Doesn’t Know Signed
This is a very charming story. I hope you will continue to write on it. I find myself disliking his wife for her cheating heart. Somehow, it is sad to think that Minerva and Professor Sprout know and that he doesn't. Though as women they may resent her doing someone they respect a wrong. I pity Severus right now and want him rid of the bitch.

redvelvetcanopy 2005.10.06 - 02:57PM 2: What He Doesn’t Know Signed
Oh, how sad! Just lovely, really! I adore the way you have McGonagall and Sprout tell us the rest that we've only suspected till now.

Author's Response: Thank you. I'm glad you enjoyed the ending as well. I often catch flack for such gloomy endings, but really, what can I say? I'm an angst whore ;)

Thanks for your comments on both chapters.


redvelvetcanopy 2005.10.06 - 02:54PM 1: What He Doesn’t Know Signed
Your descriptions are evocative and lovely and I can't help but feel incredibly sorry for Snape for being betrayed by this woman. He knows though, doesn't he?

Author's Response: It would appear that I've been remiss in responding to reviews again. *sigh* So sorry. Time just slips away.

Thank you for your comments. I'm glad you enjoyed, and I'm just thrilled that you found the story emotionally laden. I always strive for that when I'm writing.


totalreadr 2005.08.04 - 11:39AM 2: What He Doesn’t Know Signed
1. "I keep forgetting," she said bitterly. "This isn't part of the arrangement, is it?"

What a great scene. Here Clodia is, wanting to be shown love in a certain specific way that...maybe the way of showing love that she's expecting is just natural to her (and some lucky men like Marcellus), or maybe it's something she's been taught, that that's the only way to show love. And there Severus is, loving her, clearly showing it in his own way (Minerva certainly sees it), but unable to show it in the only way Clodia can see it...and knowing this, knowing that "Nothing he did was ever enough."

2. I wonder if you'd clarify your intentions in the scene with Marcellus that begins at the end of the first "chapter" (not Part, SH "chapter") and continues at the beginning of the second. It's clear in this scene that Clodia isn't feeling loved in her relationship with Severus. Then Marcellus asks her why she won't or "can't" leave Severus, and she has difficulty answering. Sometimes I think the answer is that she wants the feeling of being loved that Marcellus gives her, but she wants it from Severus, and instead of accepting he can't give it to her and leaving--or just bloody asking him to do x, y and z which are the only things that make her feel loved--she'd rather stay and wish/hope (as in the other scene I mentioned). Other times I think perhaps it's just that she knows Severus loves her (even if he doesn't show it in the way she needs; maybe she just knows it intellectually, but the problem is she can't "feel" it...maybe she figured it out from the rough sex--after all she spent all that time trying to provoke him into doing something) and feels too guilty about cheating on him to feel able to leave. Or maybe it's all of those! What were you intending?

Also: "Wha-?" she gasped, her breathing ragged and labored as she lifted her hops to meet his thrusts.

3. What's happening at the end there, where Severus drops the flowers? Has he finally been forced to bring his denial up from purely subconscious to semi-conscious? Did he find the flowers in the bedroom? Did Clodia recycle them as a goodbye gift?!? Or what?

4. winna--Erm...there is such a thing as subconscious denial. And most people who can't imagine how it could happen? Are doing it themselves. In some area of their life. Also, "having a beautiful but cheating wife is better than being alone, and where else would he find someone to marry him?" And you don't feel sorry for someone in that situation?!? Personally, anyone whose true self is so abnormal that he can't find anyone to marry him unless he puts on a completely unnatural act...sure gets my sympathy. And anyone who chooses to marry him anyway...well, if she's truly unhappy, she can always leave. And if she made a vow to be faithful, then she should either be faithful, or fricking leave already. It's not his job to break it off and save her the anguish of having to do it. (;)) OTOH, most everyone else--Don't you think totally hating Clodia is a bit harsh?

5. So Razzberry, was this supposed to be denial, social skills too poor to figure it out, or both?

6. Every time she asked how long he was going to be gone--and she often asked that, whenever he said he was leaving, in fact--he couldn't help but smile at the fondness that would prompt such a question. He'd never thought he would feel so loved, that he would feel such an important part of someone's life.

OMG teh angst! Seriously...this is so beautifully and painfully ironic.

Great story.

Author's Response: 1. Thank you. I'm glad you picked up on that one. Clodia and Severus have very different definitions of love, and they're not necessarily compatible.

2. Why doesn't Clodia leave? She's got it pretty good, actually. She has a husband (a husband who would probably kill on her orders, you realize) who sees to her material needs and gives her a stability, and she has a lover who meets her romantic needs. In my concept of her, Marcellus is not the first lover she's taken.

And yes, hips. I'll go edit that.

3. Where did Severus get the flowers? I'm tempted to say Clodia recycled them, because that would be another taunt from her, but probably not. He found them in the bedroom, and perhaps even meant to ask her where they came from, but never got around to it.

4 & 5. One thing that most of my reviewers seem to have missed (maybe I didn't make it clear?) is that this was never a marriage of love. It was the socially acceptable thing for two people to do, and by doing so, they awarded each other a measure of protection. Here:

Theirs was not a marriage born of love, but he had come to love her in time. Severus had felt a gentle pressure to find a woman and settle down—his parents had wanted it, society had wanted it. Even Dumbledore had not been above suggesting it. It was not an arranged marriage, but neither Clodia nor Severus had deluded themselves into believing they were in love. It was simply a proper and convenient thing to do, and their union had put a stop to rumors that raged about both of them—Severus had been suspect because no normal man could possibly be content to live the life of a confirmed bachelor, and he was doubly suspect because of his position within Hogwarts. Clodia had been suspect because, like any beautiful and unattached woman, she was subject to no small amount of gossip. Marriage had been a simple solution, and one that awarded the both of them a certain protection from flapping tongues.

What kind of gossip followed her? Well, what sort of gossip usually follows a beautiful and single woman? I'd offer that Severus knew what he was getting into when they took the vows.

6. I love my angst ;)

Thanks for your comments. I'm glad you enjoyed.


Kurisutaru Yun 2005.07.18 - 12:05AM 2: What He Doesn’t Know Signed
Very well written. Kinda leaves one with an empty feeling of sorts, seeing how things turned out.

Author's Response: Thanks. I'm glad you enjoyed (?) it.

winna 2005.07.13 - 01:16PM 2: What He Doesn’t Know Signed
Great story. I’ve read the other reviews, and at the risk of angering everyone, I just can’t feel too sorry for Snape *dodges rotten tomatoes thrown by irate fangurls*. Snape knows what’s going on, he just refuses to acknowledge it. He must know, otherwise how do you explain his rough treatment of his wife? Or his refusal to pursue the strange odors coming from his wife? I think he figures having a beautiful but cheating wife is better than being alone, and where else would he find someone to marry him? The next women could be much worse!

What surprised me was your comment in a response that you think Clodia is a free spirit who feels trapped cooped up in a house for most of the year. I didn’t pick up on that. I was reminded of the Greek myth about Aphrodite, who popped out of the ocean all naked and gorgeous. All the male gods were drooling and fighting over her, but Aphrodite picked the ugliest (but strongest) of the lot, Hephaestus, and agreed to be his wife. Then she proceeded to sleep with everyone else, but as long as she proclaimed her love for her husband, he was unable to see what a cheating wench his wife was. I’m just saying I see the similarities here, and that Clodia is exactly where she wants to be in life. She’s got security with her husband, romance with her lover, and no need to work unless she feels like it. Life is good for her.

But what I like best about this story is the way it humanizes Snape. This sort of love triangle actually happens in real life and it seems oddly fitting for Snape to be a participant in it. This was a well thought out and written story; thanks for sharing.

Author's Response: Thank you. I'm glad you enjoyed the story, and I think you picked up on many of the themes I was exploring in it. There is seldom a 'single' answer to any question here, but the free spirit... Yes. Free-loving, free with her body, not wanting to be tied down, more of a romantic at heart, etc But yes, she realizes what a good deal she's got going and isn't going to give it up. She also like to live on the edge a bit--she's daring him to discover her.

Yes, Snape knows and chooses to ignore it, for many reasons.

Thanks for your comments!

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