"Justice Upright - Amicable and favourable resolution of conflicts. Triumph over bigotry and prejudice. Legal action. Litigation. Contracts. Settlement. Divorce. Sometimes marriage depending upon the other cards and normally only when marriage contracts, legal or financial documents are a necessary part of the intended union. Clarity. Fairness. Arbitration. A straightforward choice. Judgement.
Justice Reversed - Injustice. Inequality and bias. Separations not yet ratified or legalised. Delay. imbalance. Confusion surrounding legal or tax affairs. Complicate negotiations. unfair or delayed judgement." - paranormality.com
When I think H/D, I think passion and humor and antagonism and hope. The justice prompt seems to be the antithesis of it - its hard to explain. Basically, the fics for this round had a hard time really getting the message of the prompt across while also fully developing the H/D relationship; one would come through but usually at the expense of the other. Having said that, the fics are still worth checking out IMO
The One with the Matchmaking Ball
Matchmaker -- Team EWE
The first fic in the fest that wasn't my cup of tea. The thing is, while the fic keeps canon up till the last chapter of book 7, characterization and interaction are very much on the fanon end and a tad too saccharine. I did enjoy it when Harry got turned into a sheep though. I just wish the author could have explained how the fic connects with the justice prompt since there didn't seem to be much of a link.
The One Where Narcissa Saves Her Family
Darkness Is Not the Absence of Light -- Team Canon
This fic took a more literal approach to the tarrot prompt since it focused on the justice system immediately after the war. I have to admit that in comparison to the previous fic, the interaction between Narcissa and Harry just felt more real to me. The characterization and interaction clicked into place.
I liked that Narcissa was the mastermind behind getting her family out. I'm glad Draco was left in the dark about her manipulations and bribes. And about the dark, the family crypt scene made H/D smut possible when I had initially thought it just wouldn't happen. I did feel bad for our two boys because Draco was a bit of a pawn and Harry was definitely used for other people's machinations. I'm just happy that Harry probably doesn't owe Narcissa a life debt anymore. Justice was definitely evident in this fic, both upright and reverse.
The end worked but like a few other fics so far it felt like it had been cut off before the final resolution; Harry had yet to really break things off with Ginny and I don't think one argument was enough to put the situation with Draco to rest. I mean, fast forward a few months and we could still get a H/D ending. But ultimately I think it was because more focus was given to satisfying the prompt which caused the romance thread to unravel. The fic felt more like gen!fic with a sprinkle of H/D on the side. IMO it could have survived even without the H/D.
The one where Draco Has To Fix Things in Time
Should the Sky Fall -- Team Fanon
This fic had justice in the form of a spell...and we all know how reliable magic is, right? So by the end of the fic, Harry is dead. Now, I normally hate death!fics, but this fic was another instance of gen!fic with a side of slash. Harry's death drove home the theme of justice and it served its purpose. Yet, while we had interaction between Harry and Draco - there wasn't enough development of their relationship IMO. The spell took Draco 5 years back in time to give Harry guidance and support emotionally but it was all a means to an end - the fall of Voldemort.
It was at this point that I realised that the justice tarot is pretty much the prompt from hell.
The One with Draco as
An Interpretation on Justice -- Team Epilogue
First let me say that the concept for this is BRILLIANT. It sort of had a bit of Alias running through it, and the introduction to the Department of Internal Affairs was LOVE. It made me think of Hitch-hiker's Guide to the Galaxy, it really did.
I got hooked early on - I mean, Pansy as a professor? I giggled. How could I not love it at that point? And while there is death in this fic too, it's Ginny's so I had no problem reading it. Astoria as an assassin was great. I like that Draco isn't shown as a home recker- in fact for the past two epilogue!fics, the guys Harry slept with were other men. I kinda like the change. Harry finding out he's gay and falling in love with Draco don't have to go hand in hand.
The ending IMO is the best out of the four fics. I like the way there are still questions - who put Ginny's name on the List and who killed her? These were left unanswered but really, that's life. What I really appreciated was Harry and Draco getting together but not at the end of the fic. We know it's going to happen, just not yet. And even though it's been left to our imaginations, I'm okay with that.
There were a few things that were off. The extreme antagonism between Ginny and Harry came out of left field. And I don't quite understand how Draco's code of ethics allowed him to kill Wood. While the Hit Man concept did bring justice into question, the idea of taking people's lives without a trial, the weakness of this system to exploitation - none of this is really explored in depth. In that way it doesn't quite capture the justice prompt. Scorpius' actions in the fic might make up for that though.
Overall while the execution of the fic and the storyline were good, it felt like the interaction and dialogue could have been developed more. A bit more attention to details and a bit more length, especially for the H/D. This fic seems to need just a bit more oomph to get it to be a real favorite of mine. But in any case, it's my pick for the round.
My Top Teams for Justice: Team Epilogue followed by Team Canon
All Tarot Prompts can be found via the fests tag.
My masterlist of recs for hd_worldcup can be found here