I guess I should comment here before things get way out of hand.
BT Story: We regret to inform you that the fox is sad.
But there's no 69?
She overestimates him.
Sadly the Farfetch'd thing was a joke. One might show up on a dinner plate eventually!hey persephone! i have been meaning to read this fic for ages at this point and have decided that i'm going to use this blitz to give me motivation to read and review as much of it as i can—something tells me that once the ball is rolling, i'll be here to stay. also given your excellent taste in pokémon my impression is that there will probably be a farfetch'd in the first couple chapters probably.
You do have to establish a baseline before breaking it.normal 1.1
as a lover of stuff that's normal, nothing beats reading a story that starts off by advertising that it is very normal.
Originally Rachel had a much bigger role in the story. But things changed and I didn't think her arc deserved all the space it was getting. Her role as the opening narrator is something of an artifact now, but I'm glad to hear you think it works.this was a nice introduction to the world! i think rachel was a really good vehicle for imparting the information that she did—we get information about the VStar program (and by extension, the culture around journeys in alola, and the stakes and conditions that are particular to your world) but in a sort of personalized way that slants a bit cynical, which i think provides valuable information of its own in a way that wouldn't really be possible with a more junior character. my impression is that we end up following cuicatl at least in part, so i'm guessing the psychic powers are here to stay, and introducing them by way of someone with some degree of mastery over her powers, who can assess cuicatl's powers for us in a way cuicatl probably couldn't do herself, seemed wise as well. overall she's a very interesting character in her own right; she always feels fully in control of every situation she's in, and it's little wonder she's worked her way so far up the corporate ladder. she has no reservations about using every tool that's available to her.
Psychic powers, from humans and psychic-types, get explored more later on. Cuicatl has some training with hers but she's hardly a master. Maybe she'll learn down the line or maybe she won't. Who knows. (I might.)the particular way your psychic powers are written is pretty neat. it never felt particularly intrusive and the stuff about the secrets and the attacks was cool. i enjoyed the strikethrough text. i do think her scans of all the initiates dragged a little bit; there was some interesting stuff in there for sure, but there was a lot of world and character information in this chapter and i wasn't really sure which bits of that sequence i was meant to latch onto. felt like an overload in some respects. it was cool, though, seeing the way that she applies her powers to her work. makes me wonder if psychics are in-demand for particular positions... feels a bit dishonest, maybe, to hire someone to use those powers in an investigative manner without the people being investigated (like manuel) knowing. either way feels like it could be right for this world though.
Okay so I kind of break my own canon a little. This isn't meant to be a worldbuilding text. I do try to keep Pokemon POVs a little xeno though. You'll see more later.i've read a decent amount of the aloladex and felt pretty much at home with some of the descriptions getting thrown around here; looking forward to seeing how some of the regulatory stuff, as well as the every distinct pokémon behaviors you describe, come into play. i can already see it a little bit with rachel's interactions with espy!
We can't all start our fics with the POTUS being sent to the Commy Realm.overall i feel that this chapter is a bit of a slow start but that's perfectly okay with me; there's enough interesting stuff and questions posed here to keep me coming back, and that's really all you need. busting down the door is overrated tbqh.
I have a soft spot in my heart for espeon, even if Pixie doesn't. I had a great deal of fun writing their Alola Dex entry.should be a comma rather than a period inside the brackets, right? btw, i never considered what a charmed life a psychic cat would lead, but this description of espeon eating is really driving it home, lol.
She's a people person. Her POV involves thinking a lot about reading other people. It doesn't actually come naturally to me so I'm glad it works for you! A lot of the cast are pretty far up their own asses, so I think she's a fun narrator to start on.this is really neat, both as an insight into manuel and as an insight into rachel—the fact that he notices what he does, and the fact that she notices that he notices what he does.
Typojumped out at me that you italicize "The Battler" the first time but not here.
Okay so maybe we can break down the door a little bit, as a treat.YOWZA what in the world, we getting juicy now
It'll get played with more later on. In the chapters about to come out, actually.very interesting tbh. i'm assuming this gets expanded on in the narrative—looking forward to seeing that. very fond of worlds like this.
the double use of "trail" felt weird here.
Will Fix.* You, i think.
Cuicatl has an attachment to nightmare fuel 'mons. This will in no way matter down the line.this is interesting! i feel like it's kinda uncommon that you see, like, abject terror towards pokémon like this in fic. neat that it seems to be towards dragons categorically... i bet it'll come up again. 😈
Will fix.stray quote at the end here, i think.
boy oh boy.
Cuicatl's Patience: Finally, a worthy opponent. Our battle shall be legendary.normal 1.2
this was a surprisingly emotional introduction to the meme, the myth, the legend! pixie naturally comes off as pretty brattish here, as she should, but it's hard not to kind of respect pixie's own unyielding self-respect (if you can call it that) in spite of everything she's been through. even though she's suffered a lot, and is continuing to suffer as long as her situation doesn't change, she still can't resist from being her devilish self, even when it lands her back in trouble. she's a pokémon absolutely brimming with personality and you do a great job at portraying quite a wide amount of it here, ups and downs and everything. her interactions with cuicatl are really sweet and imo pretty revealing of cuicatl's character, too—she is great with pokémon, as advertised, and has a strong nurturing aspect to her, a genuine eagerness to please. she managed all this even without being able to get into alice's head, so i'm sure she'll manage to keep pixie mostly leashed. :p pixie's wariness and insistence that she's just being tricked, and she hates herself for it, were delightful and i'm looking forward to seeing these two together; i know it'll be a riot, but if this chapter was anything to go on, i know it'll be emotional too!
Pixie is actually a canon character! Sort of. There's a sidequest in the Ultra Games where you can nurse a vulpix back to health after it's beat up by Team Skull. And then you do not get to keep the vulpix. I was so outraged I immediately dove for my laptop and began writing two novels and a novella about it.some things that weren't quite clear to me: why was pixie hurt in the beginning? is it relevant? how much time passes between the first part and the part in october? a timestamp at the beginning might make that a bit clearer. was pixie's time with the other trainers (who ultimately abandoned her) during the period between the first part and the second? or did that all take place before she was injured? also, it took me a bit to realize that the blonde woman was rachel—i only really figured it out because of her possessiveness over cuicatl.
Half the fun of Pixie chapters is describing ordinary things in strange ways.hell yes, poké pov. this is a cool way of describing whispers tbh. pixie's level of perception feels right here—maybe she doesn't make the words out, but she's not stupid and she gets what's going on. i suspect a lot of people underestimate how perceptive their pokémon are.
hahaha, omg. love the idea of a pokémon sneering at a human for being unclean. my cat probably does think that about me.
I don't know why my cat puts up with me, either.
Pixie is the smartest creature in the universe.i'm really enjoying the way she picks out meaning from speech.
BT Marketing: Look, here's a cute fox!man. this is depressing. poor girl.
BT Story: We regret to inform you that the fox is sad.
As you should.lmfao. here we go. i love her.
Rachel is a psychic and might maybe be pushing things along idk rule of funny.. She's also come a ways since the opening scene.huh, she got all that? it felt like she didn't understand the previous sentence. i'm a little unclear on how much language she understands exactly. also, lololol.
In the red corner, we have an Alolan vulpix! And in the blue corner we have a blind teenager with a stick! FIGHT!oh my god lmfao
Pixie should get a career as a motivational SCREMer.SO TRUE queen. i am saying this every day
I told you this in chat but 1.3 was overhauled late in development to better align with the direction of the story and Genesis's character. As a result parts of it feel weird. I'm going to do some edits today and see what I can do.normal 1.3
my thoughts on this chapter are a bit mixed. compared to the last couple chapters, genesis's voice is a lot more subdued, and she feels a lot more like a passive observer. the main thing she does is help cuicatl pick out gear for the journey ahead, but while it was cute to see their interactions and get a bit more detail about cuicatl from genesis's eyes, i felt like that part was a bit fluffy and could have been summarized. on that note i didn't really feel like the re-hasing of orientation added much to the story and wasn't sure what i was meant to take away from it. overall this chapter felt very transitional, like going through the motions of the pre-journey shopping etc, and i think i would've been just as happy to just have that stuff summarized and moved on from quickly.
Kekoa is trans masc. Cuicatl doesn't know but sensed a weak point.i don't think i really understood what you were going for with the gender stuff on kekoa. i'm guessing he's the trans kid that rachel picked out before. i can't really tell whether cuicatl is like, aggressively misgendering him for some reason, or kekoa is transfemme-in-denial-but-not-really and cuicatl is kind of tormenting him about it. either way kekoa's reaction seems sort of... underwhelming? in either incidence i'd expect kind of an intense response, although maybe i'm projecting too much there, lol.
Genesis wants so little at her core. I'm sure it will be easy to get and maintain it down the road.genesis's backstory is cute and it made me feel for her. she seems like a kid that just wants to have fun and experience childlike wonder and no one in her life is really letting her do that. i really hope she's able to figure herself out on this journey... i'm guessing she's the kid that rachel identified as a rich potential runaway in 1.1. the religious bent is really interesting and i'm curious to see how it goes—even her name has sort of a biblical feel to it. the xerneas worship has sort of european vibes to me for reasons i can't quite explain, so i'm excited to see how the culture clashes between herself, kekoa, and cuicatl pan out.
Yeah. This fic lives and dies on character interactions and dialogue. If you like that so far you'll probably keep writing it.i think where this chapter really shines is in the interactions between the kids, and that bodes well considering this story is going to center on them for the foreseeable future (i assume). so far, cuicatl is my favorite. her interactions with pixie were so cute and honestly i have no choice but to stan a fellow chad who never grew out of her dinosaur phase. her pedantry over jurassic park rules and i loved the jokes you slipped in about "tyrantrum is a scavenger" or "this dilatosaur is so inaccurate." kekoa seems interesting but i think he hasn't had enough time in the spotlight yet to really shine; i'm guessing the next chapter is about him, so i look forward to that! genesis definitely feels like the character with the most demons so far, and something tells me they're gonna catch up with her sooner or later. it feels like there are a lot of threads being spun up here and it excites me to think of how they'll converge; despite the limited time we've spent with these characters they feel quite complex and storied and it is making me hype to read the rest of this fic! even the pokémon characters feel substantial, which is rare to see. can't wait to see where they go. catch you later for the next three chapters!
Monsters.absolutely fucked up.
It's probably nothing.it sure does feel a little bit like that, doesn't it.
One of my greatest achievements tbh. Glad to see it appreciated.this is a once in a lifetime line
This fic is actually just Waiting for Godot. It's supposed to be in third person but he never arrives. Everyone goes mad in the meantime.yet this story is in second person. curious.
Neither does Genesis, really.i don't think i'm quite picking up on what's going on here.
I'm sure nothing bad ever happens to her.i love her. lord protect this girl.
Down the line I devote a fair bit of attention to how much can really be learned from the revived fossils. They have their instincts, but not their original culture or environment. Is what they do in a modern setting really indicative of what they would do when properly socialized in their original habitat? Who knows. Nothing is resolved and the debate rages on.not this debate, anything but this. it's funny to imagine that people would still be bickering about this even after successfully reviving a tyrantrum, lol.
THE STARS ARE RIGHT🙌 At long last. It is time.
No skim only 2%.So, these are mostly line-by-lines, since I was skimming for new stuff, with some overall thoughts at the end.
It was there but I expanded on it a bit.WildBoots said:I don't totally recall this section before, but the who's who of it all is much easier to follow this time around than what I remember. ... Or I've just forgotten and needed the refresher!
Will fix.Missing comma (in bold). That last one seems to want a little more. Is there actually someone she would be calling if she had cell service?
Suggestions: She has no social media presence. (“Too many temptations.”)
Trauma, what trauma? She has no PTSD. Fuck off. She will literally murder you if you suggest psychic-assisted therapy.Oof, Lyra. Damn, girl.
It's new.Can't remember if this is new but love it.
Look I'm not lactose intolerant but I know that in some cultures where most people are they still make yogurt. Maybe I'm wrong. I'll consider changing it either way.Rogue quotation mark there. The receptionist is really shitting on the food, lol.
I think "lovely" belongs with the previous paragraph. Also unsure why she'd chance yogurt if she's lactose intolerant. Hoping for soy? Would help to make that clearer.
Look life is a romcom and Cuicatl just needs to ditch her glasses and let her hair down.Wow. Telling that her "zoning out" over a cute girl = trying to fix her.
Will expand when I get back around to this arc in the edits.This feels like too little to clock Gen, TBH. I could see Lyra being hopeful because Gen is on her mind, but I'd like to see a little more fishing here before she pounces.
*angry Kekoa noises*Ooof, don't tell Kekoa that!
I hadn't thought about it this way but now I'm going to run with it.Kinda funny how Gen is always fantasizing about knights. Turns out she already has one, sort of.
Technically it could only be a week. Or years. Or never. Beldum evolutions occur when the metagross choose to allow them.How long does she imagine this will take? Or how fast does she expect Cuicatl's metagross to evolve?
Okay so this was like a last minute change because I couldn't get a sequence to work. This chapter had two separate entirely different edits and I sort of had to cobble the best parts together.This transition makes sense logically, sentence by sentence, but character-wise, I was a little confused. I get the motivation to rescue Gen and why Gen is so important to her, but why is the exploration important? Does it tie in at all to her ideas about power and protection? It feels like it almost wants to but doesn't quite.
Lyra would be furious if she pulled Gen out of the closet kicking and screaming for someone else to reap the benefits. I'll make this clearer.This one is a rollercoaster. The line about "you’re super unsure if she’s a lesbian herself" isn't quite landing for me. Like, that doesn't quite feel like awkward to me so much as anxious—if Lyra is hoping for attention from her, at least. (Maybe she's used to being admired and is thrown off by blind girl?) I guess I don't mind the speed of the bouncing from thought to thought—Lyra has complicated feelings—but the individual thoughts don't feel complete. Lyra's doubt could use a little more definition from beat to beat. Like, is she actually trying to suss out whether Cuitcatl is into her? Just wanting to feel justified that Cuicatl is indeed One of Us ™️ ? Has Cuicatl said something innocent about Gen that might get Lyra's hackles up? Is there something awful Lyra is imagining might have passed between C & G?
Got it.Since the rest of the paragraph is so Lyra-centric, it might help to add "gives the two of you the chance..." to help signal the switch from singular to plural you.
The best kind of bonding.Ah, yes.
I call it low health? Must just be a regional thing.Health feels weird. (Unless it's a rotom?) Battery?
Will clarify.I was confused here. She's asserting she's small and also puffing herself up to seem bigger? I guess Cuicatl is taking this as an implication that she's fat and her response is to insist she's not? (Contradicts her inner monologue about those kinds of things.) And then what does Lyra think this statement means, that she's saying she was born small and dad is not to blame? Took me some real puzzling to get there.
I might get into the details of her relationship with her parents later, but for now Word of God is that they feel a little guilty and also she's better than her brother so they let her be pretty independent.Wow, she's pretty indifferent to the suffering of others here. Blah, blah, people freaking out. TOLD YOU SO. I guess this checks out, since her wealth clearly shelters her. The same things aren't at stake for her as for everyone else.
I'm also curious what her parents make of her staying here. She seems confident they'd be willing to wire her more money to extend her stay, at least.
Because her others are a noibat, mudbray, and pyukumuku.Also wondering why everyone has clocked the absol as the strongest pokemon.
I imagine traveling in the woods alone sucks, in addition to being really dangerous.Overall, I think this was a better move for Lyra. This world is too hard to be angry and stabby by yourself in the dark. Even if it fails, she at least has to try to make allies. ✅
Shattering gender norms one shrug at a time.I dunno if I caught this on the first read or not, but it's hilarious right now. "Well, I'd already named her before I realized she was female, so oops, oh well, don't cry over spilled milk."
She's from the equivalent of Southern Mexico. Right on the border of the Maya and Zapotec provinces in Anahuac.X to doubt, fam. New Mexico is cold as heck at elevation at night and sometimes during the day too. Unless ... is Cuicatl from the rainforest parts, southern Anahuac? It's been a while since we've touched base with Anhuac.
She's used to setting up tents without being able to see. I might change what she's doing.What's Cuicatl contributing to this? Seems like if no one can see, then more hands is just more problems.
Will fix.Love the sensory detail and comedic timing, but I think this ought to be three paragraphs. (Lyra's actions should be separated out.)
This would require me to be any good at all at poetry. Maybe when I get around to this again? Currently working through a round of light Arc 1 edits.Wish we got lyrics here!
Astonishingly she might make contributions to pokemon science by possessing the trait of basic empathy.Galaxy brain in a trainer fic. (The bar is so low.) Good job, Cuicatl.
Will make some edits.Another rogue quotation mark.
Do you make conclusions or can you only come to them?
Are her knee-jerk fear responses really so verbal? I wonder.
You should!Wow, my memory of this is terrible. I don't remember it having any overlap with Johto. Guess I'd better reread that too.
Agreed. That should be expanded.Surprised that Cuicatl's memory of it seems bad, too, TBH
Xerneas is more 'real' because he's less involved. Less easily understood. With a more primal element. A lot of the mystery gets taken away when god lives on the hill up the road and sometimes shows up to festivals.Wow, oof, shit to unpack there, hi. I guess this must've been troubling to Genesis, too. Good that she's defecting from her bad, sinful gods or bad that she's becoming more faithless? 🚨
Though it does call into question how this world sustains people who believe their gods are the true gods when it's known that other gods are real. Is Xerneas more "real" because he's supposedly more involved in humans' lives? Could use some exploration.
So the thing about the Aztec gods is that all the major ones at least occasionally took a non-human form. Some were a lot like Egypt's animal-human hybrids. It makes it easier to think that they could just have pokemon forms in this story. Or maybe they appear one way to humans and another to pokemon. Who knows?You know, it's occurring to me for the first time on this read ... I think of the Aztec canon as mostly humanoids with a few parrot-dragons and panthers for fun, but I guess in this setting they're all fanmade pokemon now?
For the Aztecs: so the sun doesn't burn out and the Earth isn't overrun by demons that kill everyone. This has happened four times before in Aztec cosmology and will inevitably happen again. I'll try to make this clearer.I think a better question is whether worship makes them hurt you less, and I kinda want her to address that. And I want Cuicatl to address what we need them for, especially since this is in her head and we have a chance to get some answers she hasn't vocalized for Lyra.
Hmm. I don't know if this is on accident or not. Her last one in Arc 2 very much is. In Arc 3 when there isn't an abundance of either food or choice maybe things changed. Or maybe I was at a better point myself in those times. Curious. I'll think more about it. Her issues aren't over, though.Aww this is so nice. I think this was in the previous version too? But it's still cute.
Her chapters has included less body shame lately though. Worth mentioning.
I didn't really intend for Kekoa to be quiet but I guess it happened. He's not yet comfortable around Lyra. He isn't going to be so hostile this time around, but that doesn't necessarily means he wants to engage.He's been super quiet. Though I did like the moment where Cuicatl imagines him arguing with a bat through her and heads it off. Never change, Kekoa.
Yeah.*Less like a memory? Would make more sense to me that way.
She never speaks up by noibat standards. They can be quite loud when they want to be.What does that mean, that Lyra never speaks up? She seems pretty quick to speak her mind
and grill Cuicatl.
I mean angst is very fun but not every pokemon hates it. We'll explore more of that in Arc 4.Aww, nice seeing a pokemon who's hype about their experience with their trainer. We don't get too many enthusiastic yeses in this setting!
I don't actually remember.??? Get around her own gifts? What does that mean?
Will clarify.I was confused at first and thought this was the absol.
Lyra is one of the better trainers in this story. For better or worse.Oops haha.
*angry screms*Noci continues to be the best character. Obviously.
She cares about her pokemon. About her Genesis. About some other people. She has a circle of people she thinks of as safe and everyone else is potentially dangerous if she lets her guard down. Get into the circle and she will fiercely defend you.Lyra's presence was a nice addition to this chapter! It's nice to see that Cuicatl gets to offer her something more than maybe eventually helping her jailbreak Gen, and being helpful (to Lyra and the pokemon) is a boon for Cuicatl too. I got more out of the interactions with the noibat than with the mudbray, though. But it's nice to see that Lyra cares about her pokemon; in her chapter, she was so ruthlessly practical about everything. I guess now that we know her, there's nothing to say that isn't still happening. Oh no, if my pokemon don't love me, then I'll have a harder time rescuing Gen! She's clearly capable of caring though. After all, she cares about Gen.
I thought about having it happen off-screen but it seemed more fun this way.Aww, yay. Glad they followed through on this.
*sad kekoa noises*LOL wow the arrogance. He wants so badly to have a claim (ownership?) but he's been forcibly distanced from this culture so hard and he doesn't really know how it works.
Probably could. Might whenever I get around to more revisions.I'd love to see this expanded more. Can Cuicatl notice him pretending not to listen but definitely listening? Can he share more about this thought process?
Credit to Sugi on this one. She knows a lot more about hornbills than I do.I know this is in the old version, but still. Damn. I love knowing that you absolutely looked this up. You must have SO MANY cool animal facts.
;)Fun parallel to Lyra.
I wrote all of these edits very quickly. Sorry they're a mess.I think the C should be capitalized.
But was the match made in heaven or hell?Aww, they match.
Never.She would never. 🙃
Look she doesn't know how fast an unladen trumbeak flies. Maybe he does?She must be using a lot of restraint to keep from answering herself.
No. I'll clarify that. It meant that the bird and human are speaking different languages from each other. Besides, her most natural language is Nahuatl. She does know some Spanish, though.Oh my. Was this ... a real desire? Poor baby is learning some tough lessons. I'm surprised she accepts his authority on this so easily.
Is he hearing Spanish here?
She knows rock smash. Don't insult her.Is she breaking the rock or her beak? 😬
I am a messy bitch who lives for dramatic irony.Lol, about that...
I like writing Kekoa and Lyra scenes. One of my fave interactions at this point.Nice. This dynamic really checks out.
Maybe someday you'll get to meet the legendary CAPTAIN ILLIMA. Or not.Oh, shame we don't get to see him. I like him. ... Though, yeah, that assessment is dead-on.
People aren't shit. Her escapism was learning about nature and thinking about her own journey. And she does want to do exploring. IRL caves are some of the less explored areas on the planet.Interesting. She was so detached before about human suffering, but she's really invested in environmental stewardship. Why/how does she know so much about this?
I'll think about expanding on it in Arc 4.I still want more about this Indiana Jones streak in her. (Game protagonist syndrome?)
Going into your third trial with one mediocre pokemon is certainly a choice.I was wondering too. Again, she's ruthlessly practical. Though I guess she wouldn't know it's a sensitive issue.
Bleh. Will fix.Feels like there's a word missing here.
I feel like Kekoa made the jump from psychic pokemon to psychic humans just a tad too fast.
Cuicatl would beat him and then he'd feel sad enough that he could maybe beat her.Such self pity. He deserves an award.
sometimes I write cool shit in spite of myselfThis line still slaps.
Would Kekoa notice or care in the dark?Hahaha. Also, poor Lyra. She must be feeling left out, sure she's missing something and not sure what she's being left out of or how. Wish some of that anxiety were being telegraphed.
Okay that was supposed to mean "telling her the same thing she told you" but it came off wrong."What she did to you" sounds like an act of aggression rather than "what she told you."
Unless I'm forgetting something?
But megagross is spider. Will consider revising tho.Spider was jarring since right now Noci is more like an ingot. A lump.
Shut up. This is fine.This was my thought too.
Combine them to make a bewear protecc?Kekoa protecc.
I think this is old too, but if I didn't say so before I need to say now how much I'd love to see one of those in action.
I'm sure nothing bad will happen.Ah, I see. Nice foreshadowing here. Lyra is going to flip (and feel so stupid) when this comes out. I can already see how she's going to assume she didn't notice earlier because of memory tampering. This is nice—even though I've seen these chapters already, the unknown element of WTF Lyra will do adds a fun new dimension.
More hiking happened but I'll consider making things more consistent.Huh. I feel like I missed something in the intervening chapters I passed over? Last I saw them, they were far from becoming friendly with each other. Kekoa was still biting his tongue to keep from arguing with her every two seconds.
Gold star!Nice. I love the rhythm of this. Really nice use of your chatty-yet-sparse narrative style here. I clocked the florges before the name drop, and I'm proud of myself.
Will add some things in about this.Though, I did start to wonder around this time about how far away she was and doubled back to look. I know it's dark, but can they hear her moving (or the absence of her moving)? How close is her voice?
Grammar, my weaknssAlso, missing apostrophe!
It also wasn't a question.
Alongside is giving me spatial relationship more than "in addition to," and it sounds a little off to me. Maybe instead, "Now Lyra's whimpering too."
AO3 has footnotes without links. I'll consider links for particularly relevant pokemon. Just because you're bullying me about it.👀 Lit. Hi, best friend.
AD footnotes when!? Or, like, hyperlinks to the relevant AD section, at least for the forum version! 🤩
God? No. She's seen gods and wants nothing to do with them. She does see herself as above humanity, though.Something about her delivery here made me wonder: does she think of herself as a god? She certainly seems to see herself as an arbiter of life and death.
Bleh"You grind your teeth" should be a new paragraph.
Paragraph breaks again, because although Lyra isn't speaking, her actions still belong on a separate line:
She doesn't care. She has things to say to Lyra, but they're less important than what she wants to say to Kekoa.Anyway, loved the body language! the head tilt and the fluttering petals. Really adds some tension for me. I wonder if it's that the florges is ignoring her (in that second line) so much as it is that she doesn't care if Lyra runs or not.
Best girl.Metal AF. Love her.
Yeah, agreed.I felt like she was slipping out of character for a minute here. Her reassurance here feels more like what the audience needs to hear to understand why she's not maiming Kekoa than it does like something she would naturally have an interest in saying? Just a smidge too on-the-nose.
Florges isn't alakazam or metagross smart. Her cognition is fairly close to human. Just a lot smarter than average. There are humans who can keep up with her, but not many. Especially after millennia of experience.That said, wow, she's got a nuanced view of what humans are like. Intelligence varies so wildly between pokemon! ... And people. It's a shame that she's able to look at Kekoa in a nuanced way, but he's still having trouble seeing beyond stereotypes. And, despite her understanding how corporations and the demand economy work, despite her helping him find this trial, he can't see her as a Person enough to ask for her name the way he did with pokemon he has direct control over. Why doesn't she like me??? We'll never know, Kekoa.
VStar is short for Victory Star. The CEO owns Victini.Your own master has chained victory? Is this a reference to Selene orrrrr? I wasn't quite sure.
Look I'm not saying that eoe made me rethink the fandom and my own work but actually yeah that is what I'm saying.Hahaha, someone has been reading eoe! 🤩 Kekoa's having his mind blown.
She's a troll and someone might come down the trail, respectively.No one would ever.
I'm confused why she's posing as a human when it's dark and no one else is really out here anyway, and I'm similarly not sure why she claimed to be a traveler only to immediately reveal herself shortly after. It was a good entrance (very fairy tale-core), but I'm having trouble reconciling it with this detail.
Some things he has to work out for himself, I guess. Also lazy writing.I'm curious why she refuses to answer him when a) she's been very chatty otherwise and b) supposedly, she's pruning him and trying to make him a better person. Wouldn't it be easier for him to be better if he knew what he was doing wrong? He's asking, after all.
Will incorporate some of them.I like this idea, but I think it needs to be drawn out a little more. He gets what the bird wants a little too easily. Maybe it flicks his leg. He stops, confused. It hops ahead. He starts after, but it turns and flicks his leg again, shooing him back. Then he gets it.
It's possible. Unlikely but possible. Too many feelings of inadequacy wrapped up there.Would he ever consider trying to get another one (especially with Cuicatl's help)? After all, it was a personality issue, not a species issue, right?
He showed the bond between human and pokemon or whatver GameFreak says.This needs more. Why does he think winning would make her less disappointed? What does he think has changed?
Hmm. Yeah, I should add a scene with them.Overall, I liked the addition of the florges, and I liked that it was a way to bring Kekoa to this trial in a way that felt more natural: it wasn't his original goal, but here he is anyway. Lyra kinda dropped off. I would've thought she'd have an opinion about Kekoa retuning to meet with the florges. She seemed really scared of it.
She's easily pleased. Thankfully she always gets the little things she asks for.LOL of course Gen sees this obvious sign of the apocalypse and is like uwu, so pretty! This is sweet, though. Glad she gets to have a small, simple hope after the week she's been having. Someone needs to be able to see the beauty in this.
She's really not in a good place and kind of doesn't care. Also this scene was a last minute addition. Will patch it up to clarify some things.It's odd to me that Cuicatl doesn't seem worried at all about how Lyra might react as this conversation continues. Like, C's not even annoyed on Renfield's behalf. It seems like this could shift so easily into Lyra realizing what's going on with Cuitcatl and flipping the fuck out. Does she not care if Lyra finds out? It seems like they should. This is still a travel-buddies-for-convenience sort of situation, after all. They need Lyra's financial support, she needs someone to watch her back and all the better if it's someone who knows Gen.
Not really, no.She faded out again. Does Cuicatl feel nothing about her witnessing that argument?
Impossible.But Lyra, what if that's true for you and Gen?????
Ooh. Always looking for more references. Although she's more Mexica than Mayan.This reminds me suddenly of the opening lines of this rad fantasy book that draws on Mayan mythology. I'm not sure whether or not you'd like it, but I loved it! (That's a link through my local black-owned book shop, but there's probably one closer to you too.) Reminds me of American Gods but 1920s Mexico and also there's a hetero romance subplot. Spoilers: Might give you some Cuicatl ideas though.
It's almost like it's really a whole new chapter.Okay, wow this wildly different!
Noci had less robotic moments in the first. And some of the musings were meant to signal the difference in thoughts from evolution. Perhaps some could be revised, though.Overall: I can't not love Noci, so of course I loved this. A few of the passages deviated from Noci's normal processing pattern, which was a little jarring, and I think they could be modified to be more roboty. (Example: when Noci muses on nights listening to radio signals, instead of "sometimes in the night," it could be something like, "Scanning stored data. Retrieved data log. Date stamp: [some numbers.] Status: [something about humans sleeping, things about the inefficiency of radio and what they're noticing.]" I was also aware that, although I could follow the timeline of events, I do think some of it is from reading the previous version of this chapter from Cuicatl's POV. Without that, I think I'd be a little confused.
Could be more.LOL omg of course it does.
She can record audiovisual and electromagnetic spectrum data.You know, it occurred to me for the first time to wonder if Noci is capable of recording video or just audio/raw data. They must, right? This gives me a really great mental image of a night-vision camera, fish eye lens, Cuicatl waving Noci away. I can imagine this is a comic book spread so easily.
Noci doesn't even know what sass is.Don't sass your parental unit, buster.
What's more terrifying: a fundamentalist billionaire or an alien predator?Oof. Get Gen in here to sympathize with that one.
Good idea.I liked the detail, but the structure didn't sound like Noci. Why not something like "Low-level UV radiation and sand detected. Armor status: undamaged"?
This is from the other beldum.Tapu Bulu???? Wait, did Cuicatl bear witness to that, too?? I can't get a sense of the time elapsed between these two.
Memories. Except for getting torn apart by the metagross.Wait, are the things that happened just before this replayed memories while the metagross is rooting around, or were they happening in the present? Confused. Error.
The latter.Does this mean that Cuicatl sustaining minor damage is part of the plan or simply that Cuicatl hasn't sustained enough damage to derail the plan?
There is no previous version. This sequence is still in the water trial chapter.This is where I think I'd be confused/missing some of the impact if I hadn't read the previous version.
There was a timeskip. Will add date stamps.Wait, Noci ran into Lyra instead on the way to Cuicatl, or this is after they're reunited? Cuicatl was so distraught about Noci being missing that I think we need to see their reunion, especially since the next time we see them talk it starts with Cuicatl scolding Noci, mistaking it for Kalani.
She is very self-aware, especially for this story.I love how this prompted Noci to actually run a self check-in lol.
It would be.AHAHAHA. I kinda wish Noci had come to a conclusion about whether that's allowed. I would think yes, since it allows Noci to continue surveilling lol.
It would mess with Noci's mission if she wasn't as critical to Cuicatl's plans.Omg I didn't realize Noci and Pixie has this in common.
Psychic-types actually are terrifying.Oh woah. I didn't realize at first that's what had happened. Neat trick, Noci.
Noci mentioned that one of the beldum had been stationed in Haina Valley. She made an educated guess.Wait, Cuicatl knows about the Tapu Bulu sighting? Is that in a previous chapter and I forgot?
She doesn't know how much power a Reshiram has.Wait, theory? Does Noci not actually know?
Yeah. I'll need to change this.How does it know she's lying? That feels surprisingly subtle for Noci, whose grasp of human body language is ... questionable.
I thought it was implied that the myths weren't actually the truth. I'll edit to reflect. "Myth" is how the metagross designates them. It has a much better idea of how humans work than Noci does.Wait, so she's saying a) it's restricted but b) here it is? I love these titles, but I wonder if "myth" is how Noci would actually designate these.
Will make this change.This is another one where it sounded more Pixie than Noci, all the shoulds and woulds. But I think you could do something like, "Data logged. Human communication inefficient. Conclusion:" etc.
I love the Xeno POVS for moments like these.Another striking observation from Noci.
The joys of parenting a toddler instead of an infant.This one made me chuckle. "Mom! She might self-destruct because this concept exists!" "I know, hush."
She's desperate, alright?Man, Cuicatl, you are asking the wrong person these questions.
She's trying to communicate to UD_Cuicatl. Might change this to the more standard language, though.This is the only time I've ever seen Noci self-identify as a metang, and it strikes me as odd.
Will add some lines.I feel like Cuicatl catches on a little too quickly here, considering how very much she was not considering doing this before. Go Noci, though! This is a huge win.
They can.This made me wonder whether Noci can jack into Cuicatl's phone. It seems like no?
Huh. Thought you were older fsr.Hey it's my birthday!
Totally. That's definitely what happened.Oh no, my birthday is the anniversary of the worst thing that ever happened to Kekoa. 🙃 I feel honored that my birthday is linked to this deeply Hoenn-core event though!! I'm sure it was entirely intentional and for my benefit and not random coincidence, as is well and just.
Sootopolis.Where's Rune Island?
Too much self-awareness.I think he'd be unhappy about it no matter what they said though.
Okay but Hoenn feels tropical? Was I lied to by a children's video game?I'm pretty sure real-world Kyushu isn't quite in the tropical zone yet. It's just above it.
I think Kekoa does act the most like a real teenager. I think it explains why people are so polarized on him.This is definitely a real teenager moment. ✅
No, the actual Queen.I'm confused. Does he mean Plumeria? Why would it be associated with Skull?
I'll pick one.Suggestion: The whole city is ending, and the ghosts are feasting.
Suggestion: The whole city is a feast for ghosts.
Because the gengar behind him retreated, too. This was more clear in an old version of this chapter.What gengar? When the crobat left, it was phrased like the supernatural cold left with it.
She's humoring him. Although this actually did make me think about some things and anyway now I have an entire new plot idea I'm going to weave into the Arc 1 & 2 edits with a few sentences here and there.Also, Plumeria seems to be really investing energy in talking to Kekoa, surprising considering he doesn't seem super important or powerful. Happy as I am to see her, it strikes me as odd.
Similar enough things.He's conflating what it means to be a pro trainer with what it means to be a trainer who can take out Selene.
Because I'm lazy and this part was c/p'd from a much earlier draft, and then not changed after florges would enter the story.I don't understand why this made him less sure. Why not reach for the florges' critique instead?
Lusamine. I thought she was important enough to Alola I didn't need to elaborate.????
Names would help. Pokemon canon has SOOO many characters. I'm not gonna recognize them all by epithets.
She thinks he's not an idiot.I feel like she should set some boundaries around what he can and can't text her .......
She overestimates him.
It's a typo. He has four.I mean, they're not really badges, are they? Also, would be nice to get a recap of how many it actually is.
Good point.Coverage feels like the wrong word. It's not that they're still talking about Kyogre and Groudon but from another perspective but that they're talking about a new topic.
Word of God: He was a wreck for a long time after Hoenn.Another few days? IDK, Kekoa.
Yeah. I should justify it better in-story.This was a big tangent!
Will bridge.Struggling to follow the connections between these sentences.
Or neither. Feels unnecessary."8 years" is trending? Maybe "anniversary" instead?
Look he didn't connect with friends because of personal choices and not because friends make a ton more backstory and characters I have to deal with. Like that friend from his first POV chapter who hasn't called since because I can never find the narrative space.Wow, great job reconnecting, Kekoa.
Basically.I'd really like to see his thought process here expanded. She seems to want to keep talking to him, so is it that he doesn't want to talk to her because she's anti-skull?
Good catch."Lucky" makes it sound like Lyra is taking it from her somehow instead of her simply choosing not to eat. Is Kekoa aware of her ED yet?
Reading her as a person.But he's not reading, right? He's getting it as an audio/visual medium.
What? Is Kekoa's logic not perfect?This doesn't quite work. They can still look up to her, right? She just won't be a martyr. That's getting buried in the word order.
Maybe.Feels a little on-the-nose.
So the title was originally a play on the Facebook motto: "Move fast and break things. If you aren't breaking things, you aren't moving fast enough."Have you at all considered changing the title to Stubborn Things? Because they super are.
This will make more sense at a later point after I make the edits. Whole new plotline he's involved in.Anyway, in all seriousness, my biggest questions here are about Plumeria. I can't quite figure out her angle, what she's even bothering to talk to Kekoa for. She's already invested too much in him if she really considers him a lost cause. I guess she could be trying to nudge him into more radical action, but he seems pretty far from that right now and I have trouble believing she really thinks that's viable or worth time and energy from her personally.
This is a good idea.I'd also like a little more from Lyra during the restaurant scene. She said it was to help her, but ... IDK, I feel like there's the possibility for more weirdness there and I wanted to see it exaggerated more. Like, misery loves company, but it sounds like Cuitcatl is being especially sullen. Maybe Lyra could try and fail to draw her out? Or maybe she just wants to vent? But she doesn't feel quite chatty enough for that to me as is.
She doesn't, originally, but I think I'll edit Recap 2 so she is around for a little longer. I like her, too.Hype about drifloon! Love those little weirdos and excited to see you play around with it. I like the inkay too and hope she sticks around.
Look I'm not saying the laws make sense from any perspective.It seems like every evolution in this world is seriously playing with fire, dancing on the knife edge between power and death. 😬 And if someone evolves a pokemon they can't handle ... then what? Can't release that back into the wild. Are they euthanized? 😬 Put into perma-storage, Parliament of Steel-style? Surely this has happened before. Class 5 or not, some pokemon would just be overwhelming. This must be something they're thinking about as they're considering their teams.
4.7Now that Lyra is a semi-permanent fixture, it would be really nice to check back in with her and see how her perspective is or isn't changing.
I thought about doing second person for the review response but decided not to because I'm lame.you have decided that you really like 2nd person narration, and now the voice in your head won't stop talking in this style. it doesn't help that your brain feels clouded and the booster vaccine knocked you out for half the day. so you decide to let blitz be blitz for today and just make a little shitpost about this long fanfic you've been putting to the side for too long.
So this tag was a result of autofill and I've since changed it. I strongly doubt there will be pokemon / human relationships here. The only time I've seen a chapterfic do it well was when the pokemon was actually a former human. That was by g-l-s. I am not on that level.After four chapters, you have decided that Kekoa is an asshole, and that you definitely ship Genesis and Cuicatl. And that Cuicatl is a little badass. And that Genesis is really cute good christian girl. Also, Pixie has a resting SCREM face. But most of all, you have realised that you would be lost without Boot's artwork. Though you are a little concerned about the Vulpix/Original Trainer tag on AO3.
I can't tell if this is a joke or not tbh.You also have taken a real liking to Leon, who is, strangely enough, depicted as a blond psychic woman with an espeon. Why the author didn't go the traditional route is beyond you, but you like
himher. Thankfully, heshe still follows canon and works for a totally not evil cult organisation here as well. Though you would have supported the namechange to "evil incorporated". What a joykill.
You also enjoy the dinosaur talk -- you yourself have gone through such a phase and uncovered some buried memories.
Oh, and you have made a note to praise the author for the amount of details in Leon's chapter.
Look how am I supposed to know my writing is addicting? And skipping 1.5 is 100% fine. I told you in DMs that a lot of this is a therapy project. The worst cases will have the skip options, or at least a CN.Hey Pers!
We’ve been texting so long and you never told me how addicting your stuff is? Or that you managed to find the formula for meth in written word? I’ve been blowing through this fic in a breeze, and I don’t plan on stopping soon. 57k words in under two days? And that already excludes 1.5, which I skipped for CW reasons. That is crazy fast in my books! But I figured I have my braincells together enough by now to give you some actual feedback. I’m caught up to 1.12 now.
I've heard that the character names also don't mesh well with screenreaders.What kept me going at this rate is your style, definitely. Second person present tense mixes incredibly well, and your sentences are so short and poignant that they just fly by. This is one of the very very few fics, where I find myself wanting to actually read it (instead of having it read to me) because I can read it faster than when it is spoken.
A lot of the fun of this story is perspective swapping. Different characters seeing hte same things and having different opinions about them.I absolutely admire the attention to detail that you have. Rachel’s chapter just blew me off my feet, and after that it didn’t really get any less, even if the pov characters that followed aren’t as trained on perception as she is. And it’s nice to hear the characters’ judgment cloud their interpretation of all observations so close after they are made.
I've been accused of that before, yeah, but I just have so many ideas and want to do them all at once. And mental problems tend to be comorbid with each other and with problems in life. My own problems might be too much for one character to realistically have tbh.Every character has a distinct style of thinking – I wouldn’t exactly say voice, but there are surely some little changes in the writing style/length of sentences/choice of words between the characters. But each of them have their reasoning for acting the way they do and you get into their heads brilliantly. I love how many layers those kids have.
They feel very “dense” in a way, like you compressed two to three character ideas into every one of them, but it really works in their favor. Sometimes I’m worried it’s a bit too much and too out there (blind + half-orphaned + psychic + endangered culture + possible refugee + discriminated for gender + several mental illnesses + possibly raped). Every single one of these themes would be enough to build a character and a narrative around, but here, Cuicatl gets to shoulder everything at once. Well, I guess that explains the length of the fic :D
Unova is not the entirety of the US. Just a province of it. IRL Hawaii has a very large Japanese-American population because the plantation owners needed cheap labor.Worldbuilding-wise, Alola and the world it’s in feels appropriately large. I’m still struggling to get Unova as the entirety of the US into my head, because that region is so miniscule, but other than that, the world feels like the size of the real world. Especially in the Kekoa-chapter when they were in Hoenn. Also, little tidbit: I always forget that Hawaii is a part of the US. I’m always baffled why they have such strong ties to Unova and not the Japanese regions, and I only remember why every other time.
Same.I love me some real world with a thin coating of pokemon over it, because it removes it from reality just enough for me to not get depressed, while still thinking about the real-life issues you present in a reasonable way.
You'll see more of the trial captains later. This isn't really any of their full time jobs.With the way you describe the shelters, Alola feels very diverse and like a lot of single people run these places (as opposed to one asset that is copy and pasted across a landscape). Also, the relaxed way the trial captain went about her business like this was some kids doing their… crap… urgh… ((there’s a little badge you can get here when you learn how to swim, it’s called the Seepferdchen. It doesn’t count for anything, it’s just a print out official looking paper and a sew-on patch, but the children who earn it are very very proud of it, and it’s their first major achievement and a nice finish to their swimming lessons.)) So yeah, the trial captain treated their first trial very much like them doing their Seepferdchen, and that she was going back to her normal and (to an adult) way more important work later, just like swim instructors are also mainly volunteering most of the time. It felt so much more realistic than the trial captains just hanging around the island.
Nah, it's just a corporation. If they're evil it's for profit, not for the ideological points.The entire VStar thing is interesting. I can totally see how and that something like this would work. It seems innocent enough (as innocent as capitalism is). But in the first chapter, I was flip-flopping between “Is this a cult, because of the ranks and lieutenants thing?” and “Is this an MLM because of those more delicate details that they would discuss on the last days of orientation?”. Anyways, I expect some evilry down the road.
I can accept that some of the pokemon world is socialized. Healthcare, pokemon center stays, etc. I don't imagine food and battle supplies are. And that can get expensive, even in the games.The “you need money to go on a journey” issue is very apparent here. And it makes sense that parents with reasonably enough resources give their children an advantage over other kids. I’d probably also sponsor my child on their gap-year and not think about having them pay for all their expenses on their own.
Whether VStar is evil or not is a question that hangs over most of the fic tbh. Different characters come out different ways.Which brings up underprivileged kids, like the three we are dealing with here. It makes them easier for VStar to target and, yes, VStar selling pokemon for profit is not really a nice thing to do. But (and I say that knowing full well I expect evilry from them) if they don’t get much worse than they are now, I don’t see too big of an issue here? Like, pokemon trade is not exactly illegal or frowned upon in this world, and it’s basically a job. A job that pays too little, but that’s how the Rubel rolls. Also provides somewhat of a security network for the kids (they are tracked and supervised after all. Wouldn’t want VStar to lose their foot-soldiers.)
CPS exists but journeys are a nice excuse for them to not be funded. "If the kids were really in a bad place they would just leave and go on journeys."Also, something I always find myself asking when underage kids are involved: How is the education and CPS system working here? There seem to be kids as young as ten on the trail. Shouldn’t they go to school? Isn’t there a state agency that returns those kids back into their homes? I get that there are runaways in real life, too. But VStar seems to mostly fear legal repercussions from the parents. Not from the government?
You'll get it. The Yveltal entry of World Myth Encyclopedia also talks about them more.Then, the church of Xerneas. Ohohohoho, that is some top-notch religious institution. Authoritative, guilting women for existing. All the good stuff I want to see called out. Pls moar.
Skull under Guzma was like that. Plumeria has different ideas.Skull is there, and they are as lovable as they are in the games. I’m looking forward to what they are up to here. As far as I can see, they are “radicals” that fight to take Alola back from the white people? I always thought of them more as a generalized pool of unwillingly non-conformists, that just didn’t fit the system (be it schooling or a “normal” job). But it seems ethnicity plays a huge role, so the nice image of the inclusatory misfits won’t fit, sadly.
I've seen different views on this from modern Mexica activists. Some do use first name / last name. Others insist that both parts of a Nahuatl name are the entire name. I think for simplicity's sake I'm going to just go with Cuicatl when I do the latest round of touchups.Cuicatl Ichtaca. I hope I’m saying her name correctly. Sometimes they refer to Ichtaca as her last name, but she and all the summaries speak of her as Cuicatl Ichtaca, so I’ll try to keep it like that in this segment.
A lot of this was in 1.5. I'll try to add more into the 1.6 recap.She is a lot of things. Mainly, she has anime-protagonist hair, and that makes her the one to go first in this list. Because that’s how life goes.
Otherwise, life has not been too kind to her. I don’t think I need to repeat everything, but she’s had it… not good. We still know relatively little about her past life. But she takes it in relative stride. Opposite to Kekoa, she is a kind girl, ready to help and happy to engage with others.
I've had suicidal depression. I remember the thought patterns.Her happy exterior is only skin deep, because on the inside there is a very harsh depression. Oh my god, I can’t tell you how scarring it is to hear your own thoughts written out like this. 10/10, very realistic depiction of depression.
I'm gonna need you to get all the way off my back.She is also a psychic, which makes her a universal translator. I still don’t quite understand how it works. Is she like Jesus, in that she talks and everyone understands her in their mother tongue? What about people that grew up bilingual? Anyway, that makes her very interesting, because she can understand pokemon, and that is always a big plus!
FIGHT!When Cuicatl Ichtaca isn’t a lot of things that put her at a disadvantage in life, she is a lovely, kinda tomboyish girl. I love her depiction of femininity. It isn’t as obsessive as the other two kids, she simply is, and her style reflects that. Though, she does struggle with the backwards expectations for women that her culture still has, and in extension with Genesis’s worldview. I’m so looking forward to seeing those two clash.
She can read some surface thoughts if they trigger the Broca's Area. Things that people think about saying or fantasize about someone saying.Cuicatl Ichtaca acts and thinks a lot older than she is. She has a very good understanding of people. At first I thought she could read at least surface thoughts, and… wait, did she lie to Kekoa on purpose??? She could read Pix’s surface thoughts when she came home! Aw man, I love her more every second.
:(Ahm, as I said, Cuicatl Ichtaca is sly as a dog. She lies if it is to her advantage, has a vast repertoire of crude language and can read people extremely well for someone who can’t rely as well on reading body language as other people can. I’d just wish she’d use her abilities to talk down people more against Kekoa and less against herself :(
So many blind fictional characters either have some sort of sense that negates the blindness or have seer powers. In very early versions of this story I fell into that trap. I've tried to change it up in this version.Due to how well she can read people, she also has a very cynical(?) view on them. Like, she does not for one minute buy into Pixie’s shit, but she is very willing to engage with it, if it makes the little fox behave. I didn’t know that, btw, and was very surprised when it came up. We had two Pixie-chapters or so, and Cuicatl Ichtaca had Pixie very convinced. I did not expect Cuicatl Ichtaca to play a double game until I heard her narration. She is such a badass!
She is blind and I love how nicely you describe things from her perspective. It’s really interesting how much still remains when you take sight away. And how much is missing. She really struggles, and even though Gen is well-meaning, she just doesn’t think of the things Cuicatl Ichtaca can and can’t do. Which I don’t blame her for. It’s hard accommodating for a condition you are not familiar with, and at the beginning it’s always like you have to learn a bullet point list of things. And seeing how there is no such list ever given or looked up, that can take quite a while.
Though, she seems to be a bit disheartened when someone makes a passing remark or anything involving sight. Like, at the beginning, when Rachel said to the group “see you later.” I mean, choice of words, Rachel. But as someone who grew up blind and has probably learned to use those phrases her entire life, I’m not sure if she would reasonably react like this? I often say “see you later” in VC to people I’ve never seen. She just seems a bit too busy with all the other things going on in her life to take care of those language subtleties.
Then the other thing that initially struck me was how the blind person gets psychic powers. I already disliked what they did with Toph’s tremorsense, because it made her a sighted person with a bit of a quirk rather than a “really” blind person. (Still, shout out to At:la and Toph, it was great to see a disabled character on screen!) But after getting to know Cuicatl Ichtaca, I found that her telepathy does not offset her blindness, but rather enhances another skill (instead of sense) – communication. Bullet dodged?
Cuicatl has to listen to her pokemon. This means that she has to see them as individuals in ways that Kekoa and Genesis don't necessarily have to. Her relationship with her pokemon will always be the most fleshed out of the three.Pixie and her “bonding” was an interesting thing. I felt it dragged a bit, but overall it was a very good addition. Mainly because it gave a layer of respect and agency to the pokemon in this universe. Between that and her mother’s encounter with the duckletts (that was lovely btw – funny and just short enough to not hurt), it really makes me think about the other pokemon we capture on our way. Like her mom said: “The rest is done with some bonding magic.” Right?
Aztec cosmology required sacrifice or else the world would end. I can't see them stopping this, however long the Triple Alliance lasted.Then there was her segment on sacrifices. And… oh boy. That was interesting. Aside from the fact that I want to see what an international court of human rights has to say about non-consensual human sacrifice – I kinda can’t wrap my head around how she justifies this to herself? Like, I get that she was raised in that religion and stuff, and later I use the same to excuse some of Gen’s views, but… how can she be “I’m a girl and I deserve the same rights as boys” while accepting that pow’s are totally okay to be executed. Dignity kinda goes two ways, doesn’t it? Then on the other hand, I’m not really keen on thinking about the justifications for and against murder, so I’ll just shelf that until she sacrifices her first human or pokemon or whatever.
This review is starting to lag the webpage, so I'll be brief. It's interesting to see how negative your views on Kekoa are. He'll be around for a while. He does get better over time. Sort of. He's a teenager full of angst and a desire to tear everything down. He reminds me a bit of myself at that age tbh.Kekoa
Some people didn't like Gen until Arc 3. Some did. Interesting to see what people like in her. I think the innocence is a draw. She's the optimist in a story of pessimists and depressed people.Genesis
He might get a POV chapter in Arcs 5 or 6. Can't promise anything until then.Also, the way she treats Sir Bubbles is harsh, especially because there’s a Gen-Sir Bubbles interaction soon after every Cuicatl-Pixie interaction. I would really love to hear Sir Bubble’s opinions (maybe even an entire chapter of him chilling in a pond?) but on the other hand, not getting that just points out how little of a voice he has in all of this. #SirBubblesIsTheBestCharacter
Cuicatl was a typo. Her not being able to consistently gender Leafeon is not.Another thing I noticed in 1.12: She has a real issue with using the word “he”. With Kekoa it’s on purpose, but I noticed several instances where she refers to Inferno as “he” and later as “she”, often within the same sentence. Now, okay, I get it, Leafeons are not exactly manly looking and she wanted a female eeveelution. She never has an issue with Sir Bubbles, he’s always correctly addressed. But then she also thought of Cuicatl as “he” at some point. Either there’s a mistake or she has some twisted understanding of male and female, where she perceives everything male as threatening and female as good and nonthreatening. Or her brain stops computing if anything goes outside of very strict gender roles.
Her challenging her upbringing is her main plot for at least the first four arcs.Back to her upbringing real quick: It’s clear that she was raised in a very patriarchal household and has never been encouraged to come to any conclusion that wasn’t given to her by her elders. (I don’t want to say “she can’t think for herself” because that phrase is so demeaning). Her entire thought processes are her second guessing herself if she did the right thing, which is really sad. But I love how she began to form her own thoughts and opinions when Kekoa challenged her with the meat-question. It’s lovely to see her question her thoughts instead of her actions.
Pixie will murder both you and Sir Bubbles for this statement.Pixie is, in her view as well as in mine, the best character (save for Sir Bubbles, but we don’t tell her that). Love her. She is a very effective and much needed comic relief. I think everyone could use a bit of Pixie thinking to boost confidence.
Is baby.You do a splendid job of keeping her “animalistic”. As in, she refers to hands as front-paws and thinks humans do sent-exchange via their hands, all the good stuff. She views human society through a different lense and acts as a good soundboard for the more difficult to spot societal issues that are brought up. Genesis and Cuicatl had a discussion on what girls can and can’t do, and to me it didn’t feel too out of the ordinary. But Pixie took that conversation and concluded that male are worth more than female humans. Which is kinda scary, if you think about Pix not as a magical ice fox but as a baby.
Idk feels a little transphobic.She also has a funny way of assigning names to humans. Skysong is a wonderful name. But still, her name for Gen, Growlsleeper, while really funny, still strikes me as Gen being the punching bag for jokes so far. Bloodrage for Kekoa is being waaay too generous. Tinydick would have been more appropriate.
it's A Problem. How she is. She defines herself by who loves her, so anyone she is attached to most be the very best ever.What I found strange, however, is how quickly she went from “I don’t want a human” to “Skysong is the best and I must protect her”. I mean, I get how she came to that conclusion, but her unquestioning loyalty for the cause came a bit out of left field. Not that I complain, Pixie is best when she is the bestest fox around.
I already have cover art but this feels like it could be lol.