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Team AU: 21. A butterbeer a day keeps the mediwizard away.

Title: Alpha and Omega
Team: AU
Author: the_gubette
Prompt: 21. A butterbeer a day keeps the mediwizard away.
Wordcount: ~8000
Rating: R
Warnings: Non-graphic sex, angst, character death (not Draco or Harry)
Summary: Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end ("Closing Time" by Semisonic)
Author's Note: I shouldn't be surprised that I ended up loving my pinch hit fic more than my original submission. Such is life. I would still be a slobbering mess crying in frustration on the floor if it weren't for my ljbff lotus_lizzy, my rlbff, mrdavismd, who encouraged me every step of the way, and my co-captain, joanwilder, who has been a total rock star through this whole fest process.

Alpha and Omega


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Comments

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Twice in one week, how lucky am I? This story was wonderful! I loved how completely in love Draco and Astoria were and I adore when Harry is in a Healer-type role. Astoria recognizing that Draco and Harry are just meant to be together and her almost pushing Draco to realize it - how lucky he was to have such a wife! And Draco's guilt for not feeling guilty was exactly the perfect emotion for the next day.

Excellent job!
Thank you Katie! :) So often we are hasty to do away with Ginny and Astoria, but I really wanted to convey that there is nothing wrong with loving more than one person in a lifetime. Most humans do. Thank you so much for your comment, I'm glad you liked it!
This was very well done. First of all, I really liked that you gave Draco a loving relationship with his wife. I think far too often, it's presented as a marriage of convenience. It was interesting to see it presented the other way around. My heart broke for Astoria and how strong she was around and for Draco- I was shocked that she could make death jokes and just amazed at her strength. I was happy to see that she eventually gave in to some of her sadness, but I still admired all her courage and bravery. I really like the way you created her character.

I think that this is a very delicate issue, and I think that you've described it all very well- the first learning about it, then dealing with it, finding that the care becomes too much- well, all of it really. I think it's beautiful the way you've walked us through this depressing situation. I liked that we could see how it was breaking her down both physically and emotionally and the toll it was taking on her loved ones- and also how well she dealt with all of it.

I felt a bit sad that Draco had cuddled with Harry, since he's so clearly in love with his wife and it must have been mildly traumatic at the time, but I liked that she knew and seemed to approve. I liked that she was helping him to get ready to move on, but it was absolutely heart breaking at the same time. She was just too lovely as a person- I absolutely adored her. I liked that she was "always right" too, as a side note.

Oh, how I cried when she died and how she died. I was almost as in love with her by the end as Draco was. I cried for them both. I was a bit surprised that Draco was ready to move on so quickly, but I think it must have been part of the healing process- besides the fact that he had so long to get used to the idea of being without her and she had been helping to move him along before her death.

This was really a beautiful story. So perfectly heart breaking. Very well done!
Your comments always blow me away. You give such amazing feedback, regardless of the team or the author/artist, and to a non-well-known author like me, it's touching. You are a class act. :)

Thank you so much for your comment. I was a little afraid that Astoria would come across as almost too perfect, too accepting of her fate and her husband's attraction to Harry. I'm glad that doesn't seem to be the case. I also wanted to convey Harry's genuine affection for Astoria as well. I tried to fashion her a bit after Hermione, and how I thought Hermione might deal with the situation. I'm so happy you loved her. Draco will still need some time to work through his grief, but I think Harry will understand that and help him through.

Thanks again! :)
Love, this is perfect! I love how you give Astoria a character, and I cannot tell you how much I love it when Harry is a mediwizard in fics! I really liked how you created a sense of time for all the events to happen and for Draco finally realize what he needed.

Astoria is quite an intelligent woman. I'm really glad she was able to help Draco, despite being so weak and cripple.

I love the scene with Draco waking up, cuddling with Harry. So adorable!

This just worked. Everything about it did. Nice work, Captain!
Thank you! I have a fondness for Harry as a mediwizard too. That just seems to suit him so much more than an auror (although I love those fics too)!

Alpha and Omega

*whimper* Oh that was a painful read! Astoria was so strong, and There. Harry as a Healer and Hospice Worker wastoo sweet for words. He did so well being there for them both. My heart breaks for Draco. i'm so glad that Astoria was able to be there for her husband, aswe ll, because then he was able to come to terms with her loss and himself as well. The quiet pain and healing of Harry and Draco coming together at the end- how you managed to bring such beauty out of such pain and loss was believable, and just... right. Well done!

Re: Alpha and Omega

Thank you so much, I'm glad you enjoyed it!
I can see why you fell in love with your own fic. All three protagonists were lovely people, and I did appreciate that Draco loved his wife, and that she was an intelligent woman who was right often (lol) and was loving and open enough to see truth about what her Draco needs. I really loved the cuddle that first morning. You know Harry was up for it, he knew he was in love with Draco, but I can only imagine how comforting that might have been for Draco. I get the distinct feeling that Harry and Astoria were the strong ones, and knew just what Draco needs, past and future. Really lovely and touching.
I get the distinct feeling that Harry and Astoria were the strong ones, and knew just what Draco needs, past and future.

That's it exactly! Thank you so much for your comment Jeanette! And for being the secretary of my fan club
Oh, this was so bittersweet. I really liked Astoria in this!
Thank you, I'm glad you liked it!
This was a really beautiful story. I loved the way that you wrote the characters. Astroia was brilliant.
Thank you so much! I loved writing Astoria as well!
I remember when I first met you, you were just starting to write fanfic and you had this idea fumbling around your brain, but it just wasn't coming. I am so glad that you forced yourself to finish the fic with this pinch hit. While it drove you crazy and stressed you out, you do it, and produced a wonderful fic.

We fanfic writers take on the problem of the "wife" in many different ways. Some make her the bitch, some kill her off screen before the fic even happens, and others just write them out completely.

But you took the issue head on and made Astoria likable! And you never had Draco fall out of love, rather his love just grew to include Harry.

I love this fic, my dear. Great job! And fantastic show of effort with such a late pinch hit for your team!

And you never had Draco fall out of love, rather his love just grew to include Harry.

What a great way of wording that! And that is exactly what I tried to do, I'm glad I conveyed that. I couldn't have done it without your help and support!! Thank you SOOOOOOOOOOO much Elizabeth! :)
Ahhhhhhhhhhh!!!! *CRIES*

I was in love with both Draco and Astoria right off the bat. I was so saddened by their plight and the love between them was so evident and so lovely. Your portrayal of EVERYONE was just outstanding. I almost didn't want Harry to happen at all...

almost. But then he did, and he was perfect, too. Perfect for Draco, absolutely what he needed. I felt so terrible for Astoria, for her ability to see what was going on, and to be okay with it to some degree, to be ROOTING for it almost... to know that Draco was really going to be taken care of and have someone wonderful to be there for him after she was gone. I cried like a baby. I just loved this fic. I have loved BOTH of your fics in this game.... now I need to go discover just what else you've written, and read it all! I can't tell you how amazed I am, that in such a short and stressful time you were able to weave a masterpiece like this.

<3 <3 <3
Also, WHAT A PERFECT SONG LINE FOR YOUR SUMMARY. I love that song!
I loved Astoria in this; after all the things writers do to 'dispense' with Ginny and Astoria, this was a road definitely less traveled. And Harry's profession as a hospice healer was very well done. I thought Draco's grief as realistic, as well as his turning to Harry when he did. You did a beautiful job with a difficult subject matter. Way to go, Capt Sam!
I wanted to convey Draco's grief as a numbness that had taken over him, and how he had an almost physical need to just feel something, which Harry could sense. I'm so happy that came through. Thank you so much Capt Joan! :)
This was heartbreaking but hopeful as well. I adore Astoria in this and how brave she was at the face of death.
Thank you so much. I'm so glad you enjoyed it!
I love your story as always! I loved the Draco and Astoria relationship and her accepting the Harry and Draco's love. I love it! Healer Davis Michaels was pretty hot! Honored!


Davis Michaels was definitely a hottie! ilu boo. :)
It was nice to see a loving relationship between Draco and Astoria. And I think it was really brave from Astoria to make jokes and laugh at her own tragedy. I showed the strength of her character. It was heartbreaking to watch Draco say he was an awful husband. In a way her illness was more difficult for Draco and I loved that he was not afraid to show his pain and fear. Wonderful story.
The jokes in the story were inspired by RL events. When my sister was going through chemo/radiation for breast cancer, my family constantly made cancer jokes. We knew that if we didn't laugh, we would definitely cry, so we chose to laugh. It was our way of taking back some control of the situation. I'm happy that part of the story touched you, because it was very special to me. Thank you so much for your comment!
this was fabulous. I loved Draco and Astoria's relationship and how deep and true their love was. Harry was so sweet and perfect in his care and his blushing. Fabulous story!
Thank you so much! :)
I loved this so much. I thought you dealt with the subject matter with dignity and respect. I truly felt for Draco and found his motivation throught-out to be very believable. Excellent job.
Thank you for your comment. I'm very happy you found Draco so believable. I wanted to show him as vulnerable while still maintaining his canon!snark. Thanks! :)
That was beautiful!!!
Thank you!! :)
This was excellent and so touching. Definitely a different take on Astoria, and a poignant one at that!
Beautifully done. I like how you handled the emotional threads between the three of them.
Thank you! I'm glad you liked it!
Astoria was really amazing in your fic. To be given only a year to live, being in constant pain and needing other people's help in most humiliating situations cannot be easy. But she was absolutely brilliant. Not perfect but who could blame her? Her death jokes were heartbreaking but I loved them anyway. Humor tends to help when times are really bad.

Brain tumors can really change the patient's behavior. She was a devoted wife to Draco who was a caring husband to her. An ideal marriage where spouses really love one another. I think it was easier for her to accept Draco's feelings towards another man - and more specifically to Harry - than to another woman. A lesser person would have been mad because her husband's life would continue after her death but she encouraged her husband to happiness. The comfort sex Harry and Draco were able to offer each other was beautiful. Poor Harry, what he must have felt waking up alone in the guest room... Healing from a great loss takes years but Draco is lucky to have a wonderful and loving man like Harry on his side.

Thank you for a really well-written and emotional fic.
What a fantastic comment! Humor definitely makes a difference during tough times. When my sister was going through chemo/radiation for breast cancer, my family constantly made cancer jokes. It was our way of taking back some control of the situation.

I went back and forth on the comfort sex, and I eventually decided to leave it in. I'm glad I did. And I'm glad that you liked it. Thanks for the great comment!
Beautifully done. Astoria was a wonderfully strong character, and I thought her making death jokes was a very realistic reaction for someone in that situation. Enjoyed this.
I'm so happy you enjoyed it. Thank you so much! :)
You know, I don't think I've come across a fic before that really highlights a loving and fully developed relationship between Draco and Astoria, and I really enjoyed that about this story--it was a fresh take, to me, and quite heartening to see that their marriage didn't need to crumble because of lies and self-denial etc. Very sad, of course, but still--you leave us with great hope. Terrific work--go team!
I wanted to show that Draco was able to maintain a stable, loving, committed relationship even before Harry came along. I'm glad I was able to do that. Thank you so much for your comment, go team!! :)
OMG I is Dead!! I was doing fine until Astoria wanted to die in Draco's arms, then the tears started and wouldn't stop.

Harry giving Draco time to be with his wife was just so right, but Draco feeling guilty for starting to have feelings for Harry....was just... words can't describe.

Great Job!!!
*hands you some tissue*

I'm so glad the story touched you. Thank you for your comment!
Thank you so much! :)
This made me cry, which had to be blamed on hayfever as I was reading in between cooking dinner and people kept asking what was wrong! Should have locked myself away with emergency chocolate rations to read this. The poignancy of mixed emotions and realistic issues of daily intimate care had the hallmark of true experience as well as brilliant writing. I endorse what others have said, that sympathetic characterisation of Astoria (or Ginny, for that matter) can make excellent reading. It is, I believe, harder to do, but in my opinion is one of the factors that can raise a work from the level of 2-D teenfiction into mature, convincing and moving literature. Thank you, and congratulations.
Aw, I'm sorry you cried! But I am touched that you enjoyed the story. Thank you so much for your beautiful comment! :)
Thank you for giving Draco a fully developed heart!
Aw, yay! I'm glad you think so. Thanks!
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