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Thread: Oneshot: Heart of Darkness (KnK)

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    nicht mitmachen Dullahan's Avatar
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    Oneshot: Heart of Darkness (KnK)

    This was intended to be a prologue for the upcoming MIaL early-chapters rewrite, but I decided it didn't really fit with the structure some way into writing it. I didn't want to scrap it, though, so I thought I'd finish it and post it seperately. Essentially, Lio shows up at the tail end of Overlooking View and insults people.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------
    September, 1998

    I don't think I even need to say this, but I think my end should be a long fall from a place overlooking the world.

    * * * *

    “Aaaaaannnd...splat

    Follow her path with your finger, and mime an impact when she hits the ground. Cue a chorus of snickering from the spectators. That's it; there isn't any more. Movie ends, roll credits. A good ending? Debatable. Opinions may vary. Some like it. Others leave the theatre feeling vaguely dissatisfied in ways they can't quite find the words for. A controversial film. Limited release.

    That said, I don't think she was really expecting to have an audience for this scene, but it's the thought that counts, right?

    * * * *

    It's a little after two o'clock in the morning. The streets around here are deserted, with neither pedestrians nor vehicle traffic for what must be a block or two in either direction. This is an old area, and these are condemned buildings – intended to be torn down, bulldozed, removed to make way for...well, anything, really. The buildings are unoccupied, with no lights in their windows. Only the harsh yellow-orange circles cast by the streetlights and the faint, formless glow of the lights of the surrounding city reflecting off the low clouds illuminate the scene. The buildings themselves rise up into the sky like huge, black monoliths, or gravestones – geometrically precise (or, as the case may be, not quite precise) blocks of total darkness against the faintly-lit sky. At street level, it's eerily silent – the sounds of vehicles, where present at all, come from a great distance; muffled, absorbed and distorted by the intervening glass, concrete and steel. This is an abandoned area, a cut-off area; it's as if it's part of a completely different world to the bright lights and ceaseless pedestrian traffic of the city proper, less than a kilometre away.

    The corpse lies just on the edge of a pool of light – yellow light, cast by a powerful sodium-vapour streetlight. The nights are getting colder – it is September, after all – so there aren't many insects around. The ubiquitous handful of them you find hovering underneath every streetlight is absent tonight, leaving nothing but a cold, silent patch of brightness. The corpse itself is half-destroyed. A woman in a hospital gown, lying on her back, arms by her sides – facing up at the sky, it seems, though there's no doubt that there's no such thing as a cognitive process going on behind her eyes any more. The laws of physics have dictated the result – shedding the kinetic energy acquired during the fall from the twentieth floor has resulted in the entirety of the underside of the corpse being crushed and flattened. The entire back of her head past the ears has shattered outwards, spilling fragments of bone and flesh and brain onto the pavement. The rest of the body is much the same. It's likely that only the tiny, well-protected bones of the inner ear survived the her body's sudden deceleration intact. Blood spills out, staining her white hospital gown and soaking her long, black hair, and leaking irregularly onto the pavement around her body like a vast, red daub of paint. The pool of blood follows the contours of the pavement, filling the lowest points first, following slopes too slight to be easily detected by the human eye.

    From out of the semi-darkness of the deserted street, a person appears. He – though it's not entirely clear that it is a 'he', at first – wears an ostensibly white hooded jacket (with the hood down) and grey cargo pants, though both of them show signs of recent wear, with what look like chemical stains on the jacket and mud near the bottom of the cargo pants. His hair is blonde, and shoulder-length – though the yellow-orange light of the streetlight diminishes the effect somewhat. Most unusually, he carries, over his shoulder, a beaten-up old office chair, with a wheeled base and levers for lowering or raising the seat. The chair looks like something someone threw out, and that is, indeed, what it is. The boy stands in the centre of the illuminated pool cast by the streetlight. He looks at the corpse, lying a few metres away, half in darkness. After a short while, he begins to speak.

    “There's a joke I could make, about 'terminal velocity',” he says, taking the office chair and placing it, carefully, down on the ground directly underneath the streetlight. “but even I'm not that tasteless.” He sits down on the chair, backwards – his arms folded and resting on top of the seat back. He begins to swing the chair from side to side, slightly. Of course, from the corpse, no response is forthcoming. He sighs, and looks down at the pool of blood, its expansion largely halted by now, about a metre and a half from where his chair sits.

    “OK. So. Funny thing.” He says, levelling his gaze directly at the corpse's head, or what's left of it. “I'm sure you were looking really cool up there. With your, ah, rooftop, and your overlooking view of the city. It's nice, right? Looking all wind-blown?” He grins, and clicks his tongue. “Fuck, that is cool. But – now – you're down here. And-” He mimes an impact with his hands, makes a 'splat' sound to go with it. “-all you are...is dead. With, I might add, a very...stupid...look on your face.” He tilts his gaze back up again, to keep his line of sight fixed on the corpse's head. He lowers his head down to rest his chin on his folded arms, and keeps swinging back and forth on the office chair. The night is utterly windless, and the faint 'creaks' of the chair reverberate around the street without impedance. There's a pause of about thirty seconds in which the boy says nothing; then, he speaks again.

    “Was it fun?” he asks, slightly louder now, lifting his head up as if he's seriously expecting an answer. “Did you enjoy it? That's the important question, really.” He laughs, briefly, and makes a complete revolution on the office chair, spinning around only the come back to face the corpse again. “Well, I say 'important', but...eh. Who's kidding who? Of course, you had fun. That's how he sets it up, right? How he picks you. We wouldn't do it, if it wasn't fun.” He laughs again, bitterly. Glances up at the streetlight above him momentarily, before fixing his gaze back on the half-shadowed corpse.

    “So, a better question than that is, how did he sell it to you?” His voice has slightly more of an edge to it than before. Only slightly, but the difference is detectable. “What was the pitch, huh? Must have been good. Couldn't have been the same as the one he gave me, but, well, different strokes, right?” He sighs again. Far off in the distance, there's screech of tires. It echoes, between the buildings. “Well, whatever. I'm sure he was very convincing.” He adds, like an afterthought.

    “So, you make a deal with him.” He spins the chair around again, pushing against the wheeled base with his legs. “And – for a time – it's all good. You have your fun. You know? And then, then-” He claps his hands together. “-you wake up. Enter the denouement. And it's very sudden; you don't see it coming. You certainly didn't.” He laughs again. “And then, after that...” He stops spinning the chair. “...it's just not fun any more. Is it?” He stops the chair's motion again, and changes his sitting position. He's now seated sideways on the chair, with one arm draped over the backrest, and the other held out in front of him. “But there's nothing you can really do about it.”

    Needless to say, the corpse doesn't say anything.

    “Anyway, here you are. Dead.” He rolls his eyes, and adds, “Again.” Through a break in the sounds of distant cars, a faint chorus of chirping insects becomes audible, just for a second or two. “The first time was not surprising, to be honest. Maybe to you, but you had no idea what you were doing to begin with. I mean, really? Of all people, you try to use that suicide gimmick on her? That's fucking embarrassing. The schoolgirl put up more of a fight, and she couldn't even fly.” He shakes his head. “Or – float, as the case may be.” He leans down in his chair, rests his face in his hands. Then, after a short pause, he lifts himself up again, dropping his arms back down to his sides.

    “So, you got your ass handed to you. Fair enough. But...” For the first time since sitting down, his face assumes an expression of perplexity. “You came back. You came all the way back here, and you did the exact same th-” He frowns, cuts himself off. “Well. Not exactly.” He looks away, glances up – momentarily – and the towering apartment block nearby. “But close enough.” He looks back down at the corpse. “Why?”

    Only silence follows; the weighty, oppressive silence that arises from what seems like the absence of sound reverberating between vast concrete edifices. A kilometre away, a car alarm sounds, and is silenced a few seconds later.

    “This, this-” he continues, becoming steadily more upset as he does so, “-wasn't necessary. It doesn't achieve anything. It doesn't mean anything. It doesn't-” He chokes on his words, unable to say any more. For about fifteen seconds, he does nothing; simply glares, furiously, at the corpse.

    “You think you're better than me; don't you?” he says, caustically.

    “You think – even though, going by the numbers, we're even – you think, just because you off yourself afterwards, that makes what you did somehow better. Right?” He continues, building in volume and intensity as he does. The end of his accusation seems to be the peak of it; afterwards, he gives a short pause, and seems to calm down a slight fraction. “Just because I'm still breathing and you're the one who's gunning for a tombstone, that makes me worse. Right?” He sighs, deeply.

    “Well – know what? Fuck you.”

    A long silence passes, uninterrupted by either side of what can only loosely be defined as a conversation. Neither the boy in the light nor the corpse partly in shadow are willing to comment.

    And then, the boy laughs. Not bitterly. Genuinely, inasmuch as that label can really apply to someone like him.

    “Lifeless corpse, I offer you insult. What the hell am I doing?” he mumbles to himself, shaking his head. He looks up, across at the corpse. “Well. I mean...you had your reasons, right?” He gestures up at the building. “After all – you wouldn't have made the deal in the first place if you weren't abnormal to begin with.” He gulps, tries to suppress a shiver brought about by a sudden chilly breeze. It dies down after a second or two. “Like me.” He shifts in the chair again, adopting a regular seated posture, with his back against the backrest. Pushing against the concrete pavement with his feet, he begins to spin the chair again, slowly.

    “As for being better than me,” he continues, evenly, “...well. That's an interesting point.” He stops the chair's rotation abruptly, so that he's facing directly away from the corpse. “What is 'better', really?” The chair facing away from it, he glances over his shoulder at the corpse. From inside the pool of light, everything outside it appears to be cast in a deep darkness. The dimly-lit cloud layers above are only barely visible.

    “I mean...”

    A short pause.

    “...if you kill someone; if you do it...what's 'better'? Where do we...where do we find that? How does that work?”

    He sighs again.

    “Is it in the...the method? If you do it, like, painlessly – is that somehow better? If you don't, is that worse? Does it matter if you do it quickly, or slowly? What if you leave them to bleed out? If you carve them up with a knife, or a sword, is that worse than using a gun? Or is it better? If you use your bare hands, is that worse than using a knife? Or is it better? What about explosives? Poisons? Or...what if it's supernatural? Does it make a difference? Does it matter what you do with the corpse after they're dead? If you...cut it up, burn it, mutilate it...if you ea-” He chokes on his words, part-way through, and waits a second or two to regain his composure. “Does that make it worse? How?”

    From the half-shadowed corpse, his outpouring of questions elicits no answer.

    “Is it to do with what you were feeling? Is that important? Does it make it worse if you were feeling happy? Happy beforehand, or afterwards? Is it worse if you don't feel anything at all? And what if you feel bad about it? Before, during, afterwards – which? Does that make it better? What if you're angry? Sad, irritated, tired, whatever. Which of those has an effect? Do any of them? And – what if it was a crime of passion? Impulsive? Does that make it better, than if it was premeditated – planned? What about if you do it for someone else? For yourself? Is one better than the other? Which? What if you're oblivious; you don't even know that you are killing people. Is doing it on purpose somehow worse? What if...if it was an accident?” His face twitches, uncomfortably. “What if you didn't mean it to happen...does that make it better?”

    Again, there is no answer.

    “And what about what they were feeling? If they're scared, is that worse? If they're happy, is that better? What if they never even notice; if they don't see it coming? What is that? Better, or worse, than if they know it's going to happen? And what if they deserve it? Or if they think they deserve it? What if they don't? And then, there's...what if you make them do it themselves? Is that worse than you doing it personally? What if you make them think it's what they want to do? What if they don't know, that that's what they're doing? Is that somehow better, or somehow worse? Which? How?”

    And again.

    “And, you know – what about who they are? Is it a question of demographics? Young? Old? Male, female? Rich, poor, employed, unemployed? Homeless? What if they're children? Does that make it worse? Does it make it better, then, if they're old? What if they're orphans? Does it make a difference, how many people will be left to remember them? What if they had lots of friends? What if they had no friends?” Another uncomfortable twitch. “What if-” He pauses for a second. “What about who you are? Whether you're young, old, male, female, whatever. Does that make a difference? Why?”

    And again.

    “And then you've got the numbers. And that seems obvious, right? But...killing two; is that twice as bad as killing one? It should be; you feel it should, but – why? Not like they can really give you the death penalty twice, so how does that work? And what about larger numbers? What if you kill ten, or a hundred, or a thousand? Does the difference – between one and two, two and three, three and four – get smaller? Is it the same gap, going from, say, ten to eleven as it is going from one to two? Or zero to one? Or is there some kind of...proportionality thing?” He swings the chair around, one hundred and eighty degrees, to face the corpse again.

    “And, you know...people – I mean, you ask them, and you'll get answers, right? Everyone's got their own opinion. All different. Theirs-” He gestures out at the city around him. “-just happen to agree, more or less. The generals, if not the specifics...'cause you've got, what, religion, philosophy, laws – all that shit – to keep things in agreement. All things considered, they tend to, ah, average out over the population into whatever answers keep society functioning the best.” He takes a deep breath of cold night air. “But then, there's me. Well. Us, I guess. And we-” He points at the corpse, then at himself.

    “-we don't know what the fuck the answers are. I mean – should we?” He shrugs. “See, they – they can afford to be certain. They can be certain about these things because – you know, statistically speaking – they'll never have to deal with them, personally. And they will...they'll stand there, on their moral high ground, so to speak – wearing their halos and wringing their hands – and they'll be able to say, you're better, or you're worse. With certainty, you see. Because – and, you know, there's nothing really special about them – all they are, is lucky enough that they've never had to get their hands dirty. So it's obvious – from up there. But, from down here, all that's obvious is that...well. It's not the answers, I'll tell you that. No answers down here. It's a romantic notion, but the truth is killing people can't teach you anything you don't already know. No – all that's down here...is confusion.”

    A peculiar twitch – or maybe a shiver – comes over the boy.

    “Best of all, I guess, would be not to kill anyone to begin with, right?”

    He looks, pleadingly, at the corpse. He's beginning to breathe heavily, and his hands are shaking.

    “But – if that had been on the table, to begin with – then neither of us would be here

    Suddenly, he retches, violently, sending a massive shudder coursing through his body. He falls off the chair, and the chair itself topples over onto the ground. His breathing is ragged, and – despite the cool air around him – he's sweating heavily. From where he lies, face-down on the ground, he draws himself up – pushing against the concrete with his elbows. He moves, forcing his way forward, forearms trembling, towards the corpse – towards the blood, and the bone, and the flesh-

    “I-”

    He chokes; can't say anything. The twitch in his face has reached a crescendo; his expression is at war against itself around his bloodshot eyes. His breathing becomes heavier; saliva pools in his mouth, and drips down, soundlessly, onto the pavement-

    “Kh-”

    Another stifled exclamation. Incoherent. He punches the ground, drawing blood from his fist, and quickly shifts to a sitting position. Pushing back on the concrete with his feet, he moves himself back – away – from the corpse, forcing himself back along the ground, right up until his back meets the steel pole of the streetlight. He sits, backed up against it, trembling. Pulls his knees in close to his body. With a – shaking – hand, he moves to wipe away the saliva from his mouth-

    “Nn-”

    It seems to happen before even he realises it. With his left hand, he takes a single finger – the little finger, still bloody from punching the concrete earlier – and forces it inside his mouth, between two rows of teeth seemingly normal in appearance, apart from the unnaturally large and sharp canines. Both his hand, and his head, are trembling, unsteadily. Tears begin to well up in his eyes. He closes his jaws; feels the pressure of teeth on skin. Pain, as well, as he goes further. He bites down-

    SNAP.


    Though a quiet sound by objective standards, the noise of snapping bone and tearing flesh is all the boy can hear. The pain dilates his pupils to thin, vertical slits, and only his use of his other hand to cover his mouth prevents him from crying out. The injured hand, dripping blood, he forces into the pocket of his jacket. He doesn't want to look at it. His other hand, he keeps clamped tightly over his mouth. Forces himself to finish it. He can't spit it out. He can't-

    Crunch.


    Another bite. The finger is crushed and bisected; warm blood, tasting like iron, mixes with the saliva in his mouth. The fingernail brushes the end of his tongue, and a wave of nausea courses up through him. Still, he doesn't allow himself to open his mouth. He breathes through his nose, and his breaths are quick and ragged. He's crying; the tears mix with sweat and pour down his face, over his hand, stain his jacket.

    Crunch.


    Eventually, he swallows it. By then, he's buried his face in his knees, sobbing, with his arms wrapped around them. The wound on his left hand has clotted already; the blood has dried unnaturally fast. He sits there, for thirty seconds, maybe – under the streetlight, with nothing else around but the chair and the corpse; not a living human around for a kilometre in every direction. And, of course, the corpse doesn't say anything. So he just sits there – crying, alone, under a streetlight in an immense, dark city.

    “Do you-” He looks over at the corpse again, wipes his reddened eyes with the sleeve of his jacket. He's calmed down, now. The momentary impulse was just that. His legs straighten out, no longer bunched up tightly as close to himself as they can be drawn.

    “Do you get dreams?” he asks, quietly; almost mumbling. He turns to look back down at his feet. “I get these dreams.” The corpse doesn't say anything.

    Suddenly, he laughs. Softly. Bitterly, or genuinely; it's impossible to tell.

    “We are so fucked, Fujyou.” He shakes his head, and looks over at the corpse again. “It's a disease. You see it. You had it too. Gets everywhere. Everything you do. The longer you have it, the deeper it goes. Every cell gets infected. In the end. And – in the end, there's nothing left. Just the disease.” From her, he turns away; looks up at the night sky, the clouds reflecting the city below.

    “So we managed to convince ourselves we could do something about it. What a joke. We knew how this was going to end. From the very start, even.” He looks down at his left hand – at the clotted stump where his little finger used to be.

    “To deny what you know to be true.” He clicks his tongue. “Got to be strong to pull that off. Or crazy. Which, I guess-” He glances over at the corpse, momentarily. “-makes me stronger than you.” He gets up, slowly. Rises to his feet, using the lamppost as a support. “Or crazier.” He adds. He dusts himself off, from the impact with the ground earlier.

    “In the end, we're the same, you and I. Both of us – terminal cases.” His voice carries little emotion – at the very least, little that can be identified. He leans down, and picks up the office chair, takes it over his shoulder. He turns around, and takes one last look at the corpse.

    “So, I don't know. Maybe this has all been meaningless.” He sighs. “Wasted words, wasted life.” After that, he laughs, once. Then, he turns around, stepping out of the pool of light.

    “Maybe I'll be seeing you soon.”

    With that, and nothing else, the blonde-haired figure vanishes; dissolves, as if it had never left, back into the dark and empty streets.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------

    Let me disclaim this first: Lio's rants in here are shamelessly ripped off from heavily inspired by Far Cry 2, Far Cry 3, and Spec Ops: The Line, all of which are video games which owe a lot to Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, hence the name. You may recognise some of The Jackal's lines in here.

    Why does Lio randomly have an office chair? Because why not.

    It's really funny to think about, but it's pretty likely that - in essentially every KnK movie except 7 - whenever anything important happens, Lio is just...there. Just off-camera, or too far away to be seen. He's a really weird kind of audience surrogate character, when you think about it.

    Don't worry about it. Fingers grow back. (No, they don't.) (Actually - for Lio - yes, they do.)

    Writing this made me ship Lio x Kirie for some reason. I have no idea why. Aaah, the plotbunnies...

    The MIaL rewrite is moving forward...slowly. Sorry about that. New Year's tends to complicate things. I hope to get it done some time in the next 2 weeks. There won't be any MIaL updates until after that's done*. However, depending on how progress on it moves forward, the first chapter of the KnK/Wuxia fusion I've been going on about for months now may finally see the light of day. That, too, is moving forward. Slowly.

    *Unless I really really really want there to be one. Which is always possible.
    Last edited by Dullahan; January 3rd, 2013 at 05:05 AM.
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  2. #2
    When in doubt, nuke it 'til it glows xelloss's Avatar
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    Man, I love your Lio so very much. He's just awesome.

    Of course, we don't really have any other Lio to compare him to other than the canon one, since you seem to be the only person on the entire internet who writes Lio fics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Moczo View Post
    “Correct! It is never appropriate to sell your daughter, you insufferable jackass.” Kariya said.

  3. #3
    God have mercy on my rolls... Servant Shiki's Avatar
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    Your Lio is canon to me.
    Lancer x Archer OTP
    Spoiler:

  4. #4
    吸血鬼 Vampire Zephyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Servant Shiki View Post
    Your Lio is canon to me.
    This

    -----
    awesome oneshot man, looking forward for more Lio stuff.

  5. #5
    Don't @ me if your fanfic doesn't even have Shirou/Illya shipping k thnx ItsaRandomUsername's Avatar
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    I could offer a lot of insight on this piece. Or, I could just simply say:

    "This update is finger lickin' good!"

    ...I took the road more traveled by, and it made all the difference.
    McJon01: We all know that the real reason Archer would lose to Rider is because the events of his own Holy Grail War left him with a particular weakness toward "older sister" types.
    My Fanfics. Read 'em. Or not.



  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Dullahan View Post
    It's really funny to think about, but it's pretty likely that - in essentially every KnK movie except 7 - whenever anything important happens, Lio is just...there. Just off-camera, or too far away to be seen. He's a really weird kind of audience surrogate character, when you think about it.
    Always watching. Just like this.


    Quote Originally Posted by xelloss View Post
    Man, I love your Lio so very much. He's just awesome.

    Of course, we don't really have any other Lio to compare him to other than the canon one, since you seem to be the only person on the entire internet who writes Lio fics.
    Yes, it's very unfortunate. KnK fics in general are rare enough already; what few there are usually focus on Shiki. Which I definitely don't mind, but it does mean that Lio fics are basically nonexistent.

  7. #7
    Asshats don't cease when they die but after folk forget what made them fun LunarLegend's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Servant Shiki View Post
    Your Lio is canon to me.
    I agree, heartily. A monologuing madman is a beautiful thing, providing you're not sharing a room.


    Quote Originally Posted by ItsaRandomUsername View Post
    "This update is finger lickin' good!"
    That is terrible and excellent and I love you, IRUN.



    Side KnK characters need more love. We only get a bit of time with them in the movies, and their character motivations are only slightly teased out more in the novels. It's fun to explore their uniquely bent little headspaces, so this is a welcome treat.

    Do you know of EarthScorpion, perchance? Your style really reminds me of him - character-driven stories which make a very sympathetic look at what we'd consider inhuman, paired with a detailed look at how a military or medical organization would deal with abnormal phenomena.

  8. #8
    nicht mitmachen Dullahan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LunarLegend View Post
    Side KnK characters need more love. We only get a bit of time with them in the movies, and their character motivations are only slightly teased out more in the novels. It's fun to explore their uniquely bent little headspaces, so this is a welcome treat.
    They do. Regrettably Kirie Fujyou is deceased twice over by the time of MIaL, but Fujino's still around, and she'll be becoming important later on.

    Quote Originally Posted by LunarLegend View Post
    Do you know of EarthScorpion, perchance? Your style really reminds me of him - character-driven stories which make a very sympathetic look at what we'd consider inhuman, paired with a detailed look at how a military or medical organization would deal with abnormal phenomena.
    I'm afraid I haven't. Where can I find his stuff?
    EDIT: Holy shit, he's the Aeon Entelechy Evangelion guy!
    Last edited by Dullahan; January 6th, 2013 at 10:36 PM.
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  9. #9
    He's fairly active on spacebattles, and I think he posts all his stuff to FFN too. Unfortunately, I don't think he likes Nasu.

  10. #10
    Asshats don't cease when they die but after folk forget what made them fun LunarLegend's Avatar
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    From what I gathered, EarthScorpion dislikes any setting where protagonists win by virtue of being protagonists. Gurren Lagann's approach is his pet peeve. If you go charging into battle screaming loudly and full of courage, you shouldn't be able to curbstomp the opposition who is being tactical and precise and who planned this encounter over a dozen simulations.

    That's not to say he's going to murder your protagonists the minute they face opposition, but any conflict will result in them being changed by the experience. He's a little like Gen Urobuchi in that regard: there are consequences for your actions, and those consequences will follow you for the rest of your life - for good as well as ill.

    What made me think of MIaL and EarthScorpion's approach is how you've handled the various conspiracies involving Blackwatch and the Three Kings: while our main characters are having breakfast dates or philosophizing in their offices, the other players in these stories are moving forward. When the main characters act will determine the outcome of their successes. When they react too quickly, they are caught unprepared for their opposition; by reacting not quickly enough, their opposition has already won a forward advantage in their goals.
    Last edited by LunarLegend; January 7th, 2013 at 02:07 PM.

  11. #11
    nicht mitmachen Dullahan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LunarLegend View Post
    From what I gathered, EarthScorpion dislikes any setting where protagonists win by virtue of being protagonists. Gurren Lagann's approach is his pet peeve. If you go charging into battle screaming loudly and full of courage, you shouldn't be able to curbstomp the opposition who is being tactical and precise and who planned this encounter over a dozen simulations.
    Unless you're the Crawling Chaos, Lion Edition, and even then it's iffy. Funny thing is that so far in MIaL, Lio has never lost a fight - in every single case he's either taken out the opposition entirely or forced them to retreat. It just doesn't feel like it. Blackwatch have this way of making every victory against them a Pyhrric one - or maybe that's just how Lio works. Could be both.

    That's not to say he's going to murder your protagonists the minute they face opposition, but any conflict will result in them being changed by the experience. He's a little like Gen Urobuchi in that regard: there are consequences for your actions, and those consequences will follow you for the rest of your life - for good as well as ill.
    No-one has plot armour in MIaL. No-one. You'll see what I mean later on. *evil laughter*
    Last edited by Dullahan; January 7th, 2013 at 03:24 PM.
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  12. #12
    Asshats don't cease when they die but after folk forget what made them fun LunarLegend's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dullahan View Post
    Funny thing is that so far in MIaL, Lio has never lost a fight - in every single case he's either taken out the opposition entirely or forced them to retreat. It just doesn't feel like it. Blackwatch have this way of making every victory against them a Pyhrric one - or maybe that's just how Lio works. Could be both.
    And that's EXACTLY why your writing works. yeah, Our Hero[?] survives because he has an incredibly OP Origin making sweet, sweet love to a viral equivalent of steroid-laced powerthirst. That doesn't negate the fact that he acts rashly, irrationally, and stupid, and he suffers the consequences of these regularly. He wins, but his victories are, as you sy, Phyrric.



    No-one has plot armour in MIaL. No-one. You'll see what I mean later on. *evil laughter*
    Goodbye, Shiki! We knew thee well!

  13. #13
    Man of Wealth and Taste saintsant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dullahan View Post
    No-one has plot armour in MIaL. No-one. You'll see what I mean later on. *evil laughter*
    This fills me with trepidation... and excitement.

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