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Oneshot Secrets by Taure - M

Discussion in 'Almost Recommended' started by Photon, Sep 5, 2013.

  1. Photon

    Photon Order Member

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    Title: Secrets
    Author: Taure
    Rating: M
    Genre: Drama/Tragedy
    Status: Oneshot
    Library Category: Restricted Section, maybe Dark Arts?
    Summary: "Harry Potter, Director of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, hates secrets. Dark story, not for children. Post-DH, adult Harry."
    Link ff.net: http://www.fanfiction.net/s/8272476/1/Secrets
    Link WbA: https://forums.darklordpotter.net/showthread.php?t=22099 (better formatting)

    This is a perfect Dark Lord Potter story. Creepy and disturbing - as intended.


    Edit by Minion, December 17, 2016
    Taure removed the story from ff.net. The WbA version still works though.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 17, 2016
  2. The Fine Balance

    The Fine Balance Headmaster

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    Not that engaging. It suffers from two issues: firstly, the ending is kind of obvious. Not that he would kill Ginny with that spell, but that something would happen to her. That makes the entirely straightforward end rather anticlimactic.

    Then there is the exceedingly detached narrative, with that rape sprinkled on for effect (he's already mindraping people, is a physical rape supposed to convince me of the story's 'darkness'?).

    And finally, the most interesting part of the story for me, the loyalty he inspired - that was completely unexplored. Would that loyalty be tested by the exceedingly fishy death of his wife? The day he made plans to take down the ministry, the minister is accused of homicide. Which could be okay, except this isn't some pureblood fanatic that is killed, but his wife - a very much on the 'light' Weasley. How would those in the know react to that? Would they behave like the followers of a dictator, a cult figure, a what? - As I said, I found this area the most intriguing and least developed.

    So yeah. Sort of creepy, but not too much. 3/5.
     
  3. Republic

    Republic The Snow Queen –§ Prestigious §– DLP Supporter

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    You see, I'm giving this a 4.5/5. Why? Because it was very well written technically, and I enjoyed the fuck out of it.

    Pretty surprised this hasn't been put up before.
     
  4. Another Empty Frame

    Another Empty Frame Fake Flamingo DLP Supporter

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    5/5 even though I don't like everything he writes, I like this story of Taure's, plus everything except that weird H/Gabrielle thing set in 22-- something I think.
     
  5. Alexx

    Alexx Card Captored and buttsecksed

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    I really can’t get enough of Evil Harry, and Taure’s done him so well here. This is disturbing, far beyond creepy, but also really, really lovely and beautifully written.

    5/5
     
  6. thisperson

    thisperson Denarii Host DLP Supporter

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    My only complaint is the random redhead. I did not see her purpose. 4/5 from me for an enjoyable read.

    There aren't enough stories like this, someone should write a full length fic with this scenario.
     
  7. Lyrium

    Lyrium Sent Back to India

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    Interesting AU especially since Zabini is Minister.

    Harry's characterization is awesome.

    I also didn't care for the random red-head Muggle rape. Why not just go for Astoria then and kill two birds with one violent act?
     
  8. Taure

    Taure Magical Core Enthusiast ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

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    Because going for Astoria would ruin the idea that he's dominating a representation of Ginny, exerting control over a proxy for the real Ginny, who is now beyond his control.

    The rape scene isn't about the sex. It's about the secrets he takes from her. That was the first line of the fic - the line that popped into my head and spawned the rest.

    Harry, his hands around the neck of a woman: "Tell me a secret. Tell me all your secrets."

    The fic isn't really about Harry taking over the Ministry. That's just the setting. The story is really about a Harry with an dangerously obsessive fetish for secrets.
     
  9. Punt

    Punt DA Member

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    Harry's characterization was very interesting and his obsession with secrets was nicely done. Being a sucker for nicely done dark Harry fics, I give this one straight 5/5.
     
  10. Tommy

    Tommy The Green Ranger

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    This is one of my favourite Taure fics.

    Secrets is not about the rape, the ministry, the loyalty although they are background themes. To me, it's about the secrets. The gems nnestled within other themes.

    4.5/5 because Fine Balance brought up some good points.
     
  11. The Iron Rose

    The Iron Rose Chief Warlock

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    Hated it, absolutely loathed it. Technically proficient but nothing that even remotely interested me. But then, that's probably more due to my personal biases with rape than anything else.

    And yeah, no. That rape scene wasn't just "about the secrets." Not in the slightest.

    "Oooh, look, a rape scene. Look how dark and edgy I am!"

    There are better, and far more subtle ways to convey whatever it is you want to convey. This oneshot is not it. At least it was mercifully short though, so there's that.

    Strange, I usually quite enjoy your work. And it was technically proficient, if nothing else. I'll just put this one in as an exception to a general rule, perhaps.
     
  12. Anarchy

    Anarchy Half-Blood Prince DLP Supporter

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    Pretty boring story, to be honest. It's just the extrapolation of an idea, and that itself doesn't make a story. I would rather have seen the result being that Harry was being played from the beginning, that Astoria and co expected Harry to get those memories, plots within plots and the like...

    The story really isn't that dark. Rape doesn't really make a story darker or grittier (though I've seen like half a dozen DLPers use it for that effect and fail), and using it as a plot point is always what makes a story fail, and in this story, it doesn't do anything at all except to set up the one liner "Tell me all your secrets." Okay, cool, and Ginny's death is just checking off another DLP requirement checkbox. That's fine, since some people dig that... but it doesn't make it a good story.
     
  13. KrzaQ

    KrzaQ Denarii Host DLP Supporter

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    Feels like a prologue to a story, not a story. I would like it a lot more if it was a nice dark ruthless Harry, but unfortunately, the protagonist is mentally ill and I simply cannot identify with that. As for the rape scene, if it was about the secrets, it was conveyed very very poorly.

    So, an unfinished (looking) prologue about a character I don't like. Yeah... no.
     
  14. Silens Cursor

    Silens Cursor The Silencer DLP Supporter

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    Ugh, add me as another on the list of 'not a fan'. I'm entirely with Iron Rose on the rape elements, mostly because I don't buy the whole 'fetish for secrets' element at all, especially considering its usage as an excuse to justify poor pacing.

    Here's my big issue with this fic - as a mood piece, it doesn't work because none of the environments are given enough build or additional context, and thus it comes across as rushed. Sure, the opening scenes are decent enough, but the second Harry leaves Astoria things go downhill with the introduction of Alice. I get Harry's behaviour with Alice (looks like somebody took inspiration from Michael Fassbender's performance in Shame), but Harry's reaction doesn't fit because there's no description of any release he gets from hearing all of her perfunctory secrets. Hell, there's not even the dismissal of the secrets as perfunctory, and without any added context, it comes across as cheap and unrealistic, added rape for the sake of it.

    And you know, I'm not sure I like the ending all that much either. Harry doesn't have Zabini's wand, so the second they perform Priori Incantatem or supply Veritaserum, the entire case blows up in Harry's face. And while you could make the argument that Harry wasn't thinking of all of the consequences when he killed Ginny, just getting off on the whole 'secrets' element, but it doesn't work at the end because Harry doesn't learn Ginny's secrets. He talks to her for a few moments, curses her, and it's over - there's no revelation and the dramatic payoff is undercut.

    I dunno, maybe it's speaking from some experience when I wrote Silence Game and Temptation Game, but this comes across as unfinished and lacking in nuance. It's technically competent, but it lacks appropriate context and moments feel very much like Rick Ross' 'U.O.E.N.O' - a song about date rape which treats it with the same level of tactless nonchalance and one of the worst songs of the year.
     
  15. Taure

    Taure Magical Core Enthusiast ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

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    This is deliberate. The focus isn't on Harry's physical actions or location, but his inner monologue.

    Never seen it. Or heard of it.

    An obsession is hardly an obsession if you feel satisfied after indulging it.

    Harry is the Head of the DMLE. And anyway, there will be no investigation. This is a coup: within 24 hours Harry will have complete control over the magical world.

    That's why there's only one chapter -- there's no story after this.

    He already knows them. The thing with Ginny is punishment for keeping secrets -- punishment she accepts. That's the dramatic payoff: her resigned acceptance.

    One day you'll stop mentioning those awful fics XD And on that day the universe will end.

    That's the whole point. Messing around with Muggles' minds is considered a misdemeanor on the level of shoplifting by the magical world.


    It's not dark because of the rape. The rape is a trivial element of the story. Focusing on it is like focusing on the colour of Harry's shoes.

    The story is dark because Harry has turned into the antithesis of his canon self.
     
  16. Silens Cursor

    Silens Cursor The Silencer DLP Supporter

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    Oh, I get that. My issue is that the inner monologue is... well, pretty stripped down. It feels lightweight and not enough to adequately support what you're trying to do. More on this in a bit.

    Uhh... think we'll have to agree to disagree on this one. Sure, there's an element of diminishing returns, but at the base level there is some element of release - and here, that's not articulated, either in the monologue or in Harry's behaviour. As much as Fassbender's character in Shame (he plays a sex addict) has a muted feeling after indiscriminate sex, there is still a momentary thrill, the fleeting element of a high. That element isn't present here - hell, it's hard to even make the argument that Harry's gone past that point and is just hunting 'secrets' to avoid feeling bad, because you don't get that deeper level of context with the inner monologue. It seems like you got the surface idea of how obsession might work, but haven't grasped the subtleties here.

    It's a coup with extremely questionable cause, and as much as you stressed everyone in the DMLE is so loyal to Harry, people's loyalties do bend under pressure, even in situations like this. This is part of the issue with this story: within your frame of reference, it's all neat and tidy, but it doesn't reflect how people might react if the most basic of questions are raised. If Harry goes and 'accuses' Zabini of killing his wife to add probable cause to the coup... well, while I can see on an overheated emotional level it might work, it completely blows up the second anyone with a brain says, 'Time out - why the fuck would the Minister for Magic act to kill his colleague's wife when threats against her or his kids would be just as effective, if not moreso?'

    And again, humans don't act like this. I can see Ginny showing a lot of guilt for 'betraying' Harry (it'd be nice if you articulated what that betrayal was, by the way, because that sure as hell didn't show up in the inner monologue), but is she really so guilt-stricken that she's like, 'Okay, I'm going to let you kill me now!' I can maybe get Harry's actions to leave his children without a mother because he's a sociopath and he's tidying up loose ends, but Ginny's behaviour comes across as monumentally selfish and renders her a bad soap opera character.

    The hilarious thing is that said fics are completely relevant because you're using the exact same template, down to some pretty alarming details. Ministry destabilization, Harry manipulating people to get his own way and satisfy his own desires for control without the constraints of conventional morality, an exploration of fetishes through a first-person perspective and continuous inner monologue, and a dark ending.

    Except that added commentary is never made or even inferred in Harry's inner monologue, and never referenced again outside of the incident. Instead it comes across as rape - because that's what it is.

    And here's where the big issue is: the second you mention sexual violence and rape in a story, it gets dark regardless of Harry's desensitization to the whole affair, perhaps darker than you were intending. Harry might have turned into the antithesis of his canon self (with little-to-no context or explanation how he got there, by the way, which makes me feel like we're reading an entirely different character), but the second you bring up rape you add a whole new level of nastiness to the affair regardless of Harry's POV.

    And the issue here is context - we don't know how or what drove Harry to this point, because his inner monologue provides a scant few of those details. So he lost his idealism - that's not enough to justify an arc through this story that goes 'implied blackmail - interrogation - plan coup - rape Muggle for no reason - murder mother of his children'. That's a caricature of a character arc, and the fact that Harry never hesitates or even internally justifies his behaviour with weak excuses doesn't make him anything close to a three-dimensional character. And sure, the point you might be trying to make is that wizards dismiss Muggles and cavalierly use the Memory Charm, but that overall point is overshadowed by rape because a.) rape tends to overshadow most things and b.) Harry doesn't comment on your message in his inner monologue, and there's no subtext provided to support your argument either.

    I get what you're trying to do with this story, I do - but without details or added context or the slightest hint that Harry is anything close to what he was in canon, this story comes across as skeletal and rushed. Sorry man, I don't think it works.
     
  17. Quiddity

    Quiddity Headmaster

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    I enjoyed this, though I saw the problems with it during, it still captivated and intrigued me. Solid 3.5/5 for me, rounding to 4/5 for rating purposes.

    This stub of a review normally wouldn't warrant necroing, but I don't see why this is in the recycling bin at 4 out of 5 stars. It should probably be moved to the Dark Arts.
     
  18. Arrowjoe

    Arrowjoe Auror

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    Because it's at 3 stars (3.43 if you wanna get picky), not 4. But by all means. Necro away.

    EDIT: I'm I crazy or has there been a lot more necros lately? Especially from members like Ogqqqqqq here, with postcounts barely in double digits.
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2014
  19. Quiddity

    Quiddity Headmaster

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    I apologize, it definitely had 4 stars when I was looking. I can't see the exact rating, unfortunately, but that was what was there.

    Sorry for the bother.
     
  20. Genghiz Khan

    Genghiz Khan Headmaster

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    You're not wrong. And it's been a bit irritating, tbh. I don't remember which one member keeps doing it, but it's jarring when you see a story come up in your feed, and you're damn happy about it being a new one, and the second last post was sometime in 2011. It's not even a discussion which needs continuing If this necroing member sees this post, please don't make it a habit. Especially with stories years old.
     
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