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onion witch
  1. farfetchd-galar
  2. custom/gfetchd-kyeugh
hellooo! i'm finally back for another review. i don't remember where i left off but i binged through a ton of this fic recently so i'm just going to pick up at the most recent chapter you posted here so i can review as you release from now on! that brings me to:

chapter 10

i really like this chapter because nate kind of just feels like a guy. his back and forth with the child even almost feels like banter for a lot of it. nate gets put through a lot, and the child is constantly getting into trouble, so it's nice to see them sort of just hanging out and doing normal stuff for a little bit.

it's also good to see the child get served a little slice of humble pie, even if it's still too stubborn to admit it lost (how topical!). spending so much time inside the child's head, you start to think that its inflated assessment of its own abilities is accurate, and it's not hard to see why given all its wacky powers. but it does have significant shortcomings, so seeing them fail at something was nice.

it's nice to see absol back too—god knows nate and the child really need a goddamn adult in the room.

as usual this chapter is packed full of fun little details that make it a joy to read. titan's discarded ice cream tubs and the befuddled crowd in the cafeteria come to mind. your prose can really hit hard when it wants to, but even in the lighter moments there's all kinds of little tidbits to enjoy.

looking forward to reviewing the next chapter once it's posted here!

Togetic whips past overhead, trailing a streamer of joy dust. You reach up to pass your hand through it, enjoying the tingle of the glowing flecks against your skin.
is joy dust a drug? it kind of seems like joy dust might be a drug. is togetic raining magic cocaine on everyone.

"Tell you what, let's make a bet out of it, huh? Some jackass took all my fucking cash, you might have heard, so why don't we say this: if you beat me, I'll be quiet the whole rest of this fucking stupid trip."
X to doubt

The charizard's sunning himself amidst a litter of empty ice cream cartons.
hahaha. oh, titan. i love this. "litter" is a fun word choice.

"I guess," the charizard says, ducking his head in a nervous nod.
loved this part, he's so weirded out to be part of this. titan has a great personality.

They're not even half as fast with their whiskers damaged.
i didn't know this about raticate, but lo and behold, it's in the pokédex! fun little detail to implement.

"Not that I blame you for having trouble with it," the great Nathaniel Morgan goes on, stickily. "I swear to God I've never met a dumber pokémon in all my fucking life. I could barely get it to understand even real fucking simple instructions."
aw. that's really mean for no reason. i'm kind of surprised he goes for a lowblow like this, given how defensive he is of his own pokémon. i suppose i shouldn't be surprised the great nathaniel morgan is not a man of upstanding moral character...

"This center silverware," the great Nathaniel Morgan says blithely. "Completely shitty, am I right?" He's gone back to eating.

You wince as a young girl bangs her fork experimentally against the edge of her table.
lmfao, didn't notice this the first time. absolutely perfect.

Without looking at you, she asks, "Do you think killing him will solve anything?"

"Yes. I wouldn't have to listen to him anymore."
well, it's not wrong about that.

Absol grows bored of wandering and jumps back up on the bed, stretching out across its full width. "Do not be stupid. Of course my brother is not the Champion," you say. "My brother is Mewtwo."
ooh! bombshell. this was a big "oh shit" moment for me. awesome way to end the chapter.


the world's scariest violinist
  1. custom/skiddo-steplively
  2. custom/skiddo-phoenixsong2
  3. custom/skiddo-phoenixsong3
Almost Orre time! Let's see if the child has to put that Excellent Idea into action...

Two days from now, if the great Nathaniel Morgan hasn't been found, you have no doubt that you'll return to find the clearing empty of anyone but perhaps a sad and bewildered Titan, Duskull and Togetic watching from the margins.

So Titan wasn't already in on Rats's plan, then. Or, at least, the child is assuming he'll side with it.

"Nate would do the same thing if I was the one who was lost. You know that."

the goodest girl

"I want to go home!" Togetic says, louder, rising into the air

Dropped a period. (And woof...)

Hadn't really thought about how tricky it would be to care for such an emotionally-sensitive pokémon, haha. I mean, it'd be ideal if we could be happy all the time, and this is an unusually stressful situation on top of that, but people get angry sometimes! and having a pokémon that can't deal with that would be a bit of a challenge.

maybe you should be asking yourself why your 'good trainer' is working so hard to get them back with the Rocket grunt.

Ouch. And man, Titan's babey is really showing through here, aw.

Nate and Mightyena's argument seems like such a long time ago, and it was never really resolved, was it? I find it so interesting that she still really wants to do right by him, even though she's seriously considering not sticking around, whether she might in fact be better off without the friend she's had for so long. It's fun to compare with the child's pokémon, here because they feel like they have to be, because they have to help others, but evidence of actual friendship still feels kinda like hearsay sometimes. They want to help—Rats at least seams earnest about that—but if the child went missing now, would they look?

Nate isn't part of Team Rocket anymore, and he won't be ever again. They tried to kill him for sabotaging their missins. Don't talk to me about helping Team Rocket, Nate and the rest of us have done more than any of you to stop them!

👀 Ah, I don't think this little nugget has come up before! (Or maybe my memory is still garbage, haha.) No wonder they wanted to beat him to death. Definitely looking forward to hearing more about this, although getting Nate himself to open up about it will probably be like pulling teeth. The contrast between Nate obviously being someone who's made (and continues to make) bad decisions and seems to have trouble relating to other people and also someone who tries so hard to be good to his pokémon—he's not perfect, they do fight, he has dragged them along to Rocket stuff, but it's so clear that he cares—is just excellent.

Aww, Steelix just wanting to help him grow as a person is precious. Big noisy metal snake seems a risky choice for stairs when you need to be sneaking around, though. :P "Oh, pardon me! Make way there! I just need to give my trainer a little boost! Terribly sorry about those trash cans, I didn't mean to dent them, just need a moment..."

-Aaaaa, I love Rats's rat's-eye-view retelling, haha. Seeing and interpreting human-sized spaces and human problems and human meddling through the eyes of a small pokémon is something I love thinking about.

Finally we get the details behind why the child's pokémon are sticking around! It's interesting that all (most) of the pokémon, even Steelix from his practically alien underground world, revere Mew the way they do. She lived so far away from here! Do legends travel further among pokémon? Or is there more than one mew?

If you were gone, would they try nearly as hard as the great Nathaniel Morgan's pokémon to get you back?

Ayup. There definitely is a loyalty there, at least to memories and to Mew, but there's no way this doesn't sting. Could the child even go back to being Sara if it wanted to? Really go back, instead of just being the same sort of awkward imitation Mew tried to be in Little God?

There are too many police here, and too many people milling around, too much chance that someone will get hurt. But this is the next spot, so here you all are.

I am immediately nervous lol

"What were you trying to steal around there?" you've asked about each new target. It's almost never actually stealing: ...

More evidence that he was really trying to keep himself out of it, heh. I wonder what Steelix is remembering about the last one?

"Two eevee!" she'd said cheerfully. "Two, can you imagine that? And one of them actually cried when he saw me. It was great."

easy there Pixie

Holy shit their awful plan actually worked, haha! Nate! :D :D :D

With a cold flash you realize she's worrying about the same thing as you.

D: D: D: Of course, I doubt he'd have quite as much dislike for Mightyena as for the child, but that doesn't mean she wouldn't still be assuming the worst...

and you know from the news that a lot of people hope he knows some way of stopping Mewtwo.

well golly gee i wonder who might actually have an idea about that

the joke is that the child actually doesn't

-Man was I confused for a moment about what Nate was doing after they got back, but of course—forget whatever the freak wants for a minute, Mightyena's back and they gotta clear the air while they have the chance. And then it just. It just turns into anger management counseling, my god. Didn't come into this chapter expecting someone to confront Nate about his assholery, but I'm not gonna pretend it didn't need to happen sometime!

I guess I still don't know... where to even fucking start.

that's it, that's the whole fanfic

But for real, Positivity Doggo is just. So good.

When you fight with your pokémon, everyone just ends up feeling bad. Not that you should care about that. You don't.

-Ohhh, shit, the punch I felt when Togetic came darting out of the trees to celebrate because Nate and his team were so happy. How it must sting to see your own pokémon happy about a bunch of people you don't even like(?), and feeling like you can never have that with your actual friends(?) again. Oof.

You consider him, his thinness and his furious appetite, and quietly set aside another pack of hot dogs for him.

Aww. Also trying to stay on his good side for Orre help, but awwwww.

-The bit with Nate and his pokémon just curled up and drowsing is so good

There is no one else for me to ask, and I... I thought maybe we could be friends. Maybe. I want you to come. I do not want you to go away again.

like genuinely i am making "awww" noises out loud right now and then it's all going to go to shit

But yeah. I can't quite buy that this is the last we'll see of Nate, but there was no other way for this to go, was there? The child got away (or "got away") with a lot for so, so long, and the repercussions of not thinking through its actions or considering what it was doing to "less special" people are all just piling on now. Good thing there's still a bit of warmth left in Rats, at least. (Probably more than a bit, tbh, but it's not going to see things that way, is it.)[/S]

[You change into your other self, and abruptly the whole situation is completely stupid.

Then we just dive into being Mew and other people (and other selves) don't matter any more.

Well, this was a rollercoaster. So much genuine sweetness and vulnerability, reconciliation and attempts thereat, but then bitch you thought. Woof.

I feel like the main thing this chapter has shown me is that I never really know what to expect next out of Salvage. So many things happen and then are undone, and every time there's the tiniest hint of progress the parties involved take about two hundred steps back in response, and then it's just, like, what do we even do now? Still no sign of how Nate is relevant re: "shadow on the water's face", which is why I just can't write him off entirely even after scenes like this. What could that possibly mean? What ties him to anything at all, aside from maybe helping the child realize how thoughtless it can be (before promptly ignoring/forgetting that lesson)? And what is the endgame even going to look like? (My guess is that Mew will be found, presumably freed if she still needs to be freed, but what even is that going to mean for any of the characters?) It's almost a little frustrating, haha, but I know it's going to pay off spectacularly down the line, so I'm content to wait and watch every frame of this slow-mo train wreck as it unfolds.
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  1. butterfree
Aww, Nate's Pokémon starting to break under the stress. They're so good.

"I want to go home!" Togetic says, louder, rising into the air
Missing a period at the end there.

There's Titan's trumpeting indignation, raised in opposition to Mightyena's growls, there the wheedle of a raticate voice. The great Nathaniel Morgan's raticate. Rats doesn't wheedle.
Love this.

Oh, Titan, so naïve. I enjoy the way the child sits back and listens to hear Titan talk about why it's a good trainer, only to of course wind up hearing about how well, they're there less out of personal loyalty to who it is and more out of this sense of duty and, in Titan's case, lingering loyalty to Sara.

For now you simply slide down against your tree and sits where you are, cold and cramped and all.
Presumably you want "...and sit where you are".

this an old garage repurposed first into a warehouse and then into nothing at all, the doors all chained up and rusted. "Ah, that one," Steelix had said, gaze going distant. "That one was... bad."
Is that the one with the Gastly? :3

There hadn't been much resistance, but Mightyena looked back fondly on terrorizing the employees' ragged teams. "Two eevee!" she'd said cheerfully. "Two, can you imagine that? And one of them actually cried when he saw me. It was great."

There's no reminiscing now.
It's a bit unclear here exactly when this reminiscing did happen; the natural interpretation of the way it's written out is that it was happening just earlier, but "There's no reminiscing now" suggests that's because of the mood of the group, which makes it sound like it must have been sometime way earlier when they were more optimistic. All in all trying to figure out if there was any indication when this happened took me out of it a bit.

I'm a bit surprised by the way the crowd seems to disappear when the big reunion happens; one moment there's a lot of people fleeing from a rampaging Steelix only for this guy to step up in front and yell at it, and I expected the next thing to happen would be everyone immediately noticing, reacting, and Nate trying to slip away with the Pokémon somehow, but instead it kind of feels like suddenly they're alone? A bit jarring. Of course the police do arrive shortly afterwards, but I would've expected the narration to mention the reactions of the crowd, looking out for whether the police are here yet, etc., rather than entirely ignoring the presence of a load of other people for a while.

Love Nate's affectionate scolding, though.

"Please come. It is safe, and there is food," you say, and somehow that finally gets the great Nathaniel Morgan's attention.

"The fuck is that supposed to mean?" he snarls.
Poor Nate, reduced to "he'll come if there's food".

Of course the very first thing Nate does immediately is drag the child off to translate while he apologizes to Mightyena aaaa

The great Nathaniel Morgan's gaze flicks over to you when you repeat the question, but he never turns away from Mightyena. "Uh, what now?" Whatever sort of response he was expecting, apparently it wasn't that. He rubs the back of his neck and says, "I mean, I kind of figured that was up to you? Like I said before, I get it if you want to leave. I know this ain't the kind of thing you come back from. It's just, whatever happens, I at least wanted to fucking apologize. Because otherwise... I couldn't let that be the last thing I said to you."
look at himmmm

The great Nathaniel Morgan grits his teeth, and you close your eyes, just waiting for the explosion. "Look, it's like I said before, all right? This is the way it is. You don't gotta hang around if you don't want to. You don't gotta put up with my shit. But if you stick around, what the fuck else are you expecting?"

"You'd rather have me leave than even try to change?"

That silences the great Nathaniel Morgan for a moment. There's desperation in his voice when he says, "I mean, no. Of course not. I want you around, really, I don't—I don't want you to leave. And, I mean, I'll try. Obviously I'll try. But let's be real about this, you know?"
Naaaaaaate he's so resigned to just being a fuckup and being unable to change

"I guess. I guess I still don't know... where to even fucking start." The great Nathaniel Morgan shakes his head and lets out the weak shadow of a laugh. "Jesus, Pooch. I really do wish you'd been able to talk all this time. You'd have gotten me straightened out ages ago, wouldn't you?"

Mightyena's tail wags faintly, and only once.

"I will," the great Nathaniel Morgan says after a moment, and you can practically see him struggling to leave it at that.
So proud of him.

You should feel good about finding the great Nathaniel Morgan even though Rats and everybody didn't think you could.
What a way to frame it. Not "You should feel good about reuniting them" or even "You should feel good about finding him" but "You should feel good about finding him even though nobody thought you could".

Et tu, Togetic? Poor child.

"Hey, it's Titan!" The great Nathaniel Morgan says cheerfully. "How's it going, big guy?"
Awww, after Titan was calling him mean earlier.

Even Titan, accustomed to simply breathing on any food he wants cooked, can't resist giving it a try. He holds his own hot dog high above the fire, constantly looking around at the others to check if he's doing it right.

You consider him, his thinness and his furious appetite, and quietly set aside another pack of hot dogs for him.
Aww, something actually kind of thoughtful.

"So what have you been up to, Freak?" he asks, and you find yourself blanking, caught by surprise.
Look at him just making conversation, like it's a casual acquaintance. (Although he may have an ulterior motive in trying to find out what's going on with Mewtwo.)

The great Nathaniel Morgan wedges himself into the space between two of the steel links, what looks to be a favorite spot, and lounges there.
Oh my god, I love that he has a favorite spot to rest against a goddamn Steelix, that can't be that comfy but he is Nate

The great Nathaniel Morgan alternates between stroking the two of them with one hand and digging in the chinks between Steelix's segments, sweeping out pebbles and chunks of dirt. Watching him makes you queasy. If Steelix shifts even a little bit, those metal links are going to grind together and crush the great Nathaniel Morgan's hand, like really crush, turn it to the kind of pink paste even a soft-boiled won't be able to put back right.

But Steelix doesn't move. He lies with his head towards the fire, eyes half-closed, making faint humming noises that resonate pleasantly in your chest. You don't think you've ever seen the great Nathaniel Morgan so content: actually smiling, no trace of cynicism about him.
Oh no I love him so much

You are, you know you are. But: "Great Nathaniel Morgan. I need to ask you something."
Actually addressing him as Great Nathaniel Morgan like O Great and Mighty Ruler, I am dying

Silence stretches out. "What, is that it?" The great Nathaniel Morgan asks. Your stomach curdles with dread at his curt reply, but you nod. "Damn. I was expecting something more like, 'Great Nathaniel Morgan, will you assassinate the prime minister for me? Also I need you to wear this magikarp costume while you do it, it's really important,' like that seems more like the kind of shit you're always getting into."

You swallow down your sadness, which settle in your stomach dark and heavy like a stone.
Settles, presumably?

"Fuck your mission!" The great Nathaniel Morgan yells. "It's bullshit, and you know it! You ain't no hero, you're a fucking freak of nature who ought to be dead!"

After a few seconds the great Nathaniel Morgan scrubs his hand over his face and says, in a much more normal voice, "And look, Freak..."

"Do not call me that! I am not a freak! I am not a freak and I am not going to listen to you say it!"

The great Nathaniel Morgan glances at you from the corner of one eye, then looks away again.
Bet he feels kind of bad about that one; as much of a disparaging nickname as it is, it's one he's used kind of affectionately, and certainly here didn't mean it in a bad way.

Raticate hesitantly settles down with his trainer again, but stays wide-eyed awake, unable to relax. Mightyena lies on the great Nathaniel Morgan's far side, head resting on paws, staring out into the dark of the woods. The great Nathaniel Morgan himself stays scowling, stroking Raticate's fur in a distracted way.
Oof. Bet Mightyena's been enjoying this, huh.

Well, this was a ride. Nate and his Pokémon are a delight to read about as always.

The talk with Mightyena was really good and satisfying - his desperation to apologize to her and conviction he doesn't actually deserve her or to be a trainer at all and maybe she should just leave, her imploring him to actually work on himself, his chronic nonexistent self-esteem convinced he'll never be able to change but agreeing to anyway because Mightyena. And then, of course, after that brief happy reprieve, he's right back to being a dick. Mightyena must be feeling pretty dispirited right about now.

He has kind of solid reasons to be a dick here, of course; the child has legitimately subjected him to seven kinds of hell, and presumably that's how his Pokémon justify it, and why only Steelix, who literally doesn't know half of what it's done, actually objects. Sometimes they deserve it, indeed. But at the same time, it was reaching out about as genuinely as it's capable of, and that's the bit he threw in its face - he refused the offer without much vitriol but got vicious specifically when it said it'd hoped they'd be friends, showing a vulnerability that he just stabs. And once he does so, and the child is hurt and vulnerable and sad, it too retreats right back to calling him stupid and weak and evil and unimportant and saying it hates him. The whole thing hurts. These two are ever doomed to backslide. (And unfortunately, Mightyena can't quite have much of a talk with him about it now, can she.)

It'll be interesting to see how the child does trying to head to Orre alone. Last time you started the Orre arc it had Mewtwo with it, right? Wonder if we're going to get some complications such that he ends up coming along again, or if this'll just be an entirely different take on it.

"Jesus, Pooch. I really do wish you'd been able to talk all this time. You'd have gotten me straightened out ages ago, wouldn't you?"
Just bringing back my favorite line in this chapter. Nate actually imagining he could have been a better person, and by extension that maybe, just maybe, he can be, because with the ability to actually talk to him Mightyena'd straighten him out. Ohh, my heart.
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Starlight Aurate

Ad Jesum per Mariam
Route 123
  1. mightyena
Okay, I can’t copy/paste from FFN so it looks like I’m not pointing out my thoughts line-by-line so this will be shorter and more cohesive than my usual reviews. My apologies for getting this Blacklight review to you ludicrously late! I figured the least I could do was at least give you a solid, meaty review with all of my thoughts. It’s also been a while since I’ve read Salvage, so some of it took remembering and I felt a bit lost at points (but that’s totally my fault).

The plot is super thick at this point and, in case you couldn’t tell by my following it all of these years, I’m certainly hooked. I believe that what you posted to Serebii was a bit further along plot-wise, so if things end up aligning, then I have an idea of what’s ahead—which only makes me more eager for more chapters! Looking forward to seeing The Three Musketeers ;P

And since it looks like EVERYONE is putting later chapters all in spoilers, who am I to break tradition?

If you want a tl;dr version, here it is: good fic update moar plz

Chapter 35

I was sad to see that Mightyena and The Great Nathaniel Morgan still ignore each other and are hurt by their last interaction ☹ Poor precious pupper doesn’t deserve it

I love how Mewtwo is convinced he knows what’s best for all Pokemon and that his thoughts and opinions are right, and that those who disagree with him are wrong.

The back-and-forth about turnips gave me a chuckle :P

Love the child going around in the grocery store—whoever works in produce is going to be in for an unpleasant surprise when they find the bite marks on produce XD

The conversations on hacking remind me of that one early episode of YuGiOh Duel Monsters when Kaiba hacks Pegasus’s computer in a few seconds and manages to save Yugi’s duel at the last minute, heh. Sounds like Leonard Kerrigan could use some lessons from him!

I love Graveler’s characterization: her affectionate back-pats that nearly break Nate’s back and accepting the rock but then immediately setting it aside for a different one :P She’s sweet and caring but at the same time has no problem with shunting aside peoples’ gifts for what she REALLY wants.

I’m impressed the child knew to look at the index and was able to figure out the computer organization from there; I feel like figuring that out would take a modicum of experience using computers or researching.

I hope Leonard Kerrigan’s eyesight isn’t TOO bad, or else being stranded in the middle of the woods is going to be even harder D: And that’s already a difficult situation on its own.

Chapter 36

Any reason why you switch from Mewtwo’s dialogue being in italics to being in quotation marks at the beginning of the chapter?

The child’s decision to return to Rock Tunnel the next day doesn’t sound too promising, considering how long Onix take to think and make decisions. I can’t imagine communication would be much quicker! Overall, I liked the way you characterized the Onix/Steelix as a species and the worldbuilding you gave to Rock Tunnel. It’s sad that it’s thought of as exile, but when Onix said he wanted to take at least a century to think about who his trainer would be, I thought it was cute (if a bit naïve about human nature)!

I liked the addition of this chapter and the child’s new quest to find Steelix. When I left off, I believe the child was in Orre and met the Three Musketeers. This was a nice, quiet interlude after the wham reveal that Mew was in Orre and that the rest of the story would take place there. This chapter was cute and shows a bit of softer emotion, which I think is a nice breather after the turmoil of last chapter.

Chapter 37

In a way, it’s kinda cute that the Great Nathaniel Morgan accepts the child’s sandwich and starts talking to it after he sees the child crying.

Funny scene with the child and Onix! Nice to see he has a lesson to learn in patience, heh :P

I don’t know why, but reading about the child trying to find Steelix and thinking of where he could be reminds me of Seaking getting lost in my fic. If I was going to make this parallel, I feel like I would’ve done so earlier and am not sure why I’m just doing it now XD

Interesting how Onixes still have concepts of time in the same vein as humans and trained Pokemon do, especially considering how slow they live their lives.

The child’s journey into the Rocket base reads like something out of a horror novel—you do a great job setting up the eerie atmosphere, where the silence and absence are more terrifying than any monsters that might lurk down there. And I was so sad when the child found a Pokeball and Steelix wasn’t inside ☹ Should I have expected it? Probably not. But for the child to have kept thinking back to this exact place, I was hopeful that maybe it was a sign Steelix might be there.

Chapter 38

I can see why you had been looking forward to writing and sharing this chapter! It’s definitely an emotional one. The fear that Mewtwo incites in others is definitely palpable, and your descriptions of the moonlight and darkness help solidify that. I have, once again, found myself feeling sorry for the great Nathaniel Morgan—learning that they do not have Steelix and watching Mewtwo take his Pokemon away is hard ☹ I also have a hard time watching him physically exert himself when he’s so weak. I know he’s been doing it for the entirety of this fic, but that almost makes it worse, in a way XD Gore and body horror definitely make me queasy, but I’m so far into this fic that I’m not backing out now. Definitely looking forward to seeing how things shape up from here! Perhaps Nate will be capable of finding Steelix in the rubble of the Rocket base?

Also, just a question that arose as I was reading: Nate uses religious swears a lot (Jesus Christ or something along those lines). Does that mean that Jesus (or at least Christianity) exists in this universe? If so, that raises SO many more questions for me (because I definitely overthink things in worldbuilding in this sense XD)

Chapter 39

This might have appeared earlier in your fic, but I’m only just now noticing that Mewtwo refers to Nate as “it.” Interesting!

I learned a new word today! Rictus!

Ha, you were right when you said that this chapter was not warm and fuzzy. I certainly don’t get that vibe at all with a battle and Mewtwo endangering the child’s life :P

I like your writing style when you describe battling. You use a lot of words with strong description but also manage to convey the sense of urgency and panic. It’s something I try to take after; I used to be “too many big descriptive words” and now I’m “too many em dashes,” so I’m trying to hit that nice middle!

I was a bit more hopeful when Absol showed up that Mewtwo would stop fighting—but I suppose that’s just my over-optimistic attitude, heh. I really should know better after reading this far in. I see this was another turbulent chapter after the quiet one from before! I don’t have much to say aside from what I already have, except that I feel more sympathetic to Mewtwo since I know what’s coming to him in future chapters.

Chapter 40

Some of your descriptions of injuries are so vivid that they make me squirm—feeling like vertebrae are splintering? *shudder*

Oooh child, snagging Nate’s Pokeballs from Mewtwo. I think that isn’t a good idea on the whole, but considering that neither of them are willing to meet on middle ground to solve everything and that they both have a “my way or the highway” attitude, I don’t see anything getting better for either of them no matter what.

I hope Jade Winstead isn’t too old, because if the child transformed into a girl who’s only wearing mangled swim trunks…

How did the child/Jade leave money when snagging clothes? Can it conjure money, or did it have some in its swim trunks?

Heh, looks like the child inherited (what I assume to be) Jade Winstead’s tastes: doesn’t like flip-flops or candy and gets bored with toys.

Oh nooooo, the child has been captured! I admit, I did not see that coming! I suppose this is from the manga canon where Koga is a (former?) member of Team Rocket, correct? So he would’ve known about there being a genetically-engineered child of Mew. Quite a cliffhanger to end on! I was planning on stopping here tonight but might have to keep reading!

Chapter 41

I really appreciate the bits you pull from the manga canon and put in, like with Will, Karen, Koga and Lance being part of Team Rocket. The manga canon may be my favorite, and I love seeing how you’ve incorporated it here! (We’ll leave out the Rocket acronym, though ;P)

I kinda see where the “I want a lawyer,” line was coming from with the child’s thought process before it, but it was still felt a bit out-of-place, like it was supposed to be something comedic in what’s otherwise a fairly tense (and horrific) scene.

Interesting that the Master balls are causing the child so much pain. I thought the one used at the end of chapter 39 was faulty, but apparently not. I take it that it has to do with the nature of what the child IS, perhaps?

The child losing its Pokemon right away is sad. There’s not as much of an emotional punch to it as I would otherwise expect, though this does go along with the child being fairly emotionally detached. It certainly shows a lot of attachment to Pokemon in later chapters, though, so this one has me thinking a bit.

Why can’t the child go fully incorporeal without dying? Does it not have the full power of Ghost-types, or are Ghost-types in your fic all deceased?

Grammar note: you capitalized all Pokemon names except “muk” and one instance of “dragonite” in this chapter.

Noooo, reclaimed by the Master ball again! I guess I was too optimistic to hope that the child might manage to defeat the Elites’ Pokemon and make it out of there. Sounds like its in for a REAL interrogation session now!

Chapter 42

Gotta admit, I jumped when Lance was standing right outside the child’s cage XD

And ughghghgh the descriptions of the child losing parts of its body every time its released from the master ball X( And when the child’s body parts go numb brings me back to the times I’ve had sleep paralysis or felt my own limbs paralyse—it’s so strange seeing your limbs but not being able to feel anything.

Seeing Officer Feldhorn stand up to Lance and try to protect the dignity of Jade’s life was surprisingly sweet—I didn’t expect to be so touched in such a hopeless scene!

And wow, sympathy for the child evaporates right when he knocks out Officer Feldhorn, steals his identity, and only holds himself back from killing because it’s what Mewtwo would do.

And it ended on an ominous note! Did the child fully destroy the building? What happened to those inside? I have a feeling that Lance and his Dragonite are too powerful to be taken down so simply.

Chapter 43

Okay maybe I’ve missed the entire premise behind the fic so far, but I either did not catch on or forgot that the child has been collecting the souls of peoples that die. That adds several more layers of horror to this.

Oooh, “querulous,” that’s another new word for me!

Interesting take on Tentacruel suffocating out of water; since they’re based on jellyfish, I’d expect them to just kinda lie on the ground like blobs, and maybe eventually desiccate, but it looks like War can even prop himself up and speak for a few seconds!

*sighs* I wish more people thought that talking out solutions would be a good idea, like Rats does.

Oh! Steelix is back! And he’s with the rest of Nate’s Pokemon! That, at least, is a happy note in this fairly bleak part of the story!

Chapter 44

I notice that the child keeps feeling “wrong” every time it’s in a new body. I wonder if something is up with that.

Oh my gosh, Steelix is so adorable. From the way he announces his rampaging, to accidentally being better at it than he intends to be, to becoming super apologetic when it works too well—it’s so cute! Such a polite (if hazardous) guy.

I liked this chapter; even with the rampage, it felt quieter and calmer. Rats saying she would leave the child to prevent Mewtwo from killing more people definitely brought on a lot of emotion that, I think, was warranted. Considering how cold-hearted and callous we’ve seen the child so far, having him break down sobbing at the thought of losing its Pokemon AGAIN was (in a way) good to see. I’m also a sucker for human-Pokemon relationships, and seeing how much trainers care about their Pokemon and want to protect them is a big hit for me.

And going to Orre alone! If this iteration of the story lines up with what I’ve already read, then I know this won’t be the case. But if it’s what gives the child strength to continue on, it’ll definitely cause more conflict, internal and external, for the chapters to come.

Chapter 45

I may be late on the uptake, but I’m noticing for the first time just how much more mature the child is when Nate and Mewtwo aren’t around. When it’s only the Pokemon, the child shows a lot more care and puts thought and effort into problem-solving instead of jumping at the first solution that comes to its mind.

I also love how you utilize the Pokedex flavor here, with Togetic avoiding and being scared of negative emotions. But Mightyena’s loyalty really shines through—even after getting into fights with Nate and not talking to him, she’s defending him more than anyone else is, even to a point of him not leaving Team Rocket soon enough. Such a good girl :3

Pretty rich of the child to be shocked at Nate’s Pokemon for being okay with Team Rocket hurting people WHEN THE CHILD IS ENABLING MEWTWO TO MURDER ENTIRE CITIES WORTH OF PEOPLE.

Cute to see Rats’ heroic streak and desire to see through this ordeal to the end! She really has more of a hero/heroine personality that shows more than the other characters do, so far.

Oh my gosh, I love Mightyena reveling in the Eevee being terrified of her. Looks like she puts that Intimidate ability to good use!

New words I learned today: wheedle and limned.

I really like Nate’s reunion with Mightyena and how she teaches him to be a better person. I think it’s a beautiful display of repairing a friendship and pointing out the others’ flaws and helping him move on, as difficult as it is. I love how she teaches him and makes him face his own choices; it’s definitely something I can resonate with.

I like this chapter quite a bit! In general, I prefer the past few chapters to the ones where the child is stuck with the League (probably no surprise there). The reunion between Nate and his Pokemon is very, very sweet and I think warranted. He’s been through so much that, criminal and jerk that he is, I think he deserves to be with Pokemon who love him again.

The ending is very bittersweet; on the one hand, you’ve got Nate reuniting with his Pokemon, but on the other hand, you’ve got the child’s Pokemon going after Mewtwo and the child choosing to go to Orre alone (for now). And even with how cold-hearted and callous the child has been for the past several chapters with trying to kill the League members and allowing Mewtwo to murder thousands, I do genuinely feel (a tiny bit) sorry for it when it has to leave most of its Pokemon and Nate rejects it. I don’t really pity it too much for the Nate aspect, but again, human-Pokemon relationships are my soft spot!

Ten chapters later, and still no sign of Leonard Kerrigan… I’m a bit suspicious…

Well, now that I’ve actually written and put the review together, it turns out that it is NOT more cohesive than my usual reviews! XD Thanks again so much for sharing this work; it definitely makes for an intriguing read! I’m glad you’ve successfully devoted a couple of NaNos to this, and I’m hoping that we end up seeing more before too long! I’ll try to do a better job with keeping up with it from now on (but my fic list is as long as my arm, so I’m not sure how many promises I can make there, heh). Best of luck, and looking forward to more! :D


  1. butterfree
Dropping a review on chapter 46 here! And hoping you actually catch this thread up sometime. :P

Love the child deciding Melanie Roth isn't a serious trainer who's done anything to be able to tell her Pokéballs apart, as a weird measure of comfort, making it into just something about this character it's playing rather than a result of a series of uncomfortable events.

Look at it actually promising to listen to Titan and telling him he doesn't have to do anything just because it's his trainer! Man. You have come so far.

"We can try, Titan," you say at last, and begin that try by mustering a smile, the best one you can manage. Your mind keeps going back to Absol, waiting patiently in your cabin with the master ball between her outstretched paws. But your face you can make still, and show only what you want.
Love how achingly forced this smile sounds.

Of course it thinks Shadow Pokémon sound awesome, what a child.

The ship shakes and bounces its way through storms, rocking so violently you can't even stand up. At first it's fun, like being on some kind of carnival ride—you put up your arms and make fake screams when the ship rolls so hard your stomach drops.
Delightful. I love how Salvage captures that particular child mindset where everything is novel and cool and fun and exciting.

You make yourself heavy, so you don't go sliding when the deck pitches and rocks.
Huh, I was under the impression altering its mass was one of the things the child couldn't do?

You they must be as tall as houses, made small only by the boat's immense size.

The casual theft of a bunch of stuff, after the times it's declared Team Rocket are evil for stealing, is gloriously hypocritical.

"You have five minutes, Ms. Roth! Five minutes and then we'll have to send Boris in to get you."

"Me?" Some rough pokémon voice from the far side of the door. "You're going to make this my problem?"
Poor Boris. Always love the characterization of incidental Pokémon.

Love the agonizing tension of the stalling towards the end. Poor child wants so badly for this to just not happen.

In a way the putting off talking about much of substance is the whole point of the chapter, but I still found myself a little dismayed that neither Titan nor Rats (nor anyone else!) wanted to discuss much of what'd happened with Mewtwo or the Elites. All Titan divulged was they weren't hurt, and then the conversation with Rats started and I was sure now we were going to find out why he'd been so reluctant to talk about it anyway, but it took a swerve back away from that and we never actually go there. Feels like a bit of an arbitrary tease, kind of - none of the Pokémon wanted to discuss this, at any point in ten days?

Nonetheless, a nice bittersweet chapter of the protagonist clinging to this last small measure of joy. Looking forward to things going down in Orre (again).
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