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Old February 24th, 2011 (7:01 PM). Edited February 25th, 2011 by Miz en Scène.
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Miz en Scène Miz en Scène is offline
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    And I’m back for more, as I said I would be.

    I’ve got to say that I’m really enjoying the story so far, and there’s really not much I could point out plot-wise which I would necessarily deem a serious flaw in logic or characterization. Maybe a few small bits and pieces I think would have been better another way, but nothing major.

    Firstly, and this, I must stress, is appraisal with slight critique sprinkled throughout, the entire scene with Natalie and how you handled her character and Kester’s handling of the situation was done well, but I couldn’t help but feel it to be a bit of an anti-climax. I’m sure you must have had something planned if she indeed had her eyes glued shut, but I’m standing by my previous statement that it would have been too entirely vicious, even for Sapphire. Anyway, the entire way she acted, all nice and such, felt just kind of…empty, anti-climactic as I’ve said, and I was surprised at how little conflict you had throughout the scene. In fact, it felt as though she was just an info-dump at how nice she was acting. I’m sure she would want to make up for punching him and all, but really, giving him all the information without some form of resistance, kind of like those naïve rich girls who let the spies in the house, was just overdoing it. But still, that’s my opinion and it was really unexpected. Maybe it was there to give a break to Kester, but still… empty.

    Besides that, the next few scenes were also quite entertaining, comedy asides (le gasp). The entire sequence of events from Rayquaza’s death to Sapphire’s mourning was done perfectly and I could really feel for her character you know? They way you portrayed her sobbing in bed silently to her sudden transition into a character with a thirst for vengeance was all too perfect, and exactly what I’d imagine a character like her to be doing. In short, you’re almost flawless in her characterization, save for her treatment of non-Pokémon characters I mean. I get that she’s mean, but she just seems a bit too anti-social. I attribute that to the fact that she rarely spends time around the normal people and she’s a bit of a deadpan snarker, always having to explain the oddities of a trainer’s life to Kester while experiencing it firsthand. It’s basically a dead-end for her, having to act as a rational mouthpiece for the author, and it’s a shame to see such a well-developed character being used solely for that. In fact, look at it this way because I have some form of proof. The two times when Sapphire was in a situation that was neither absurd, nor involved any form of exaggeration, her meeting with Steven and her moment of mourning, was when she was at her best, and were really my favourite parts, in terms of character, throughout the entire fic. Real character-defining moments if you catch my drift. So yes, sorry for sticking too much on Sapphire, but she really is my favourite character in this story despite only being a bit of a secondary protagonist, or in this case, foil.

    Anyway, I’m going to give credit where credit is due and say that everything besides that was handled hilariously, now that I’m focusing more on the comedic aspect. The entire Magma existential crisis to Barry’s awkward drunken episode was superbly funny. I’m quite partial to Barry’s drunkenness, and also Fabien getting a grip on the situation by saying “I am the main character,” in that self-help book tone was priceless. Quite possibly one of my favourite quotes besides the shotgun exchange from earlier. Also, the entire double-team episode had me figuratively in stitches. I’m glad that I do these reviews in the dark of night.

    Final note:
    Wasn’t there a Circle of Hell for cowards? Puck asked. The sixth one? Oh. Wait. That was heretics. Er, never mind.
    You’re referencing Alghieri? I’m impressed. I’ve actually only read up till Inferno, so tell me, does Purgatorio actually have a place for cowards? Because cowardice almost seems like a cardinal sin.

    So yes, anyway, thanks for making my day. Truly.

    Looking forward to see how Kester's date turns out.
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