Alasdair

Reviews, Replies, and Discussions--by Dair

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I am seriously so nervous right now.  I’ve never posted here and I took an extended absence so I feel like anyone that knew me is liable to bite my head off.  Or something else off, but I’m not even going to let myself think on that topic.  I’m a terrible, terrible introvert—like I can’t even have a phone conversation without feeling like I’m going to melt into the floor so this is a big deal for me...the whole, you know, not hiding behind a character sort of thing.  Because this is just me.  Just me.  And that is terrifying. 

Here is where I will post review replies and stuff.  You are welcome to post discussions and further questions, but I can’t promise to answer them because some people get really mad about the spoilers and I don’t like making people mad.  Usually.  Just a few things...ground rules or whatever.

-Please don’t be mean to me or other people that post here.  If you feel yourself getting irritated, take a breath, walk away, and come back to what you were writing.  I’m all for fostering discussion and literary analysis but not at the expense of someone’s feelings.

-Constructive criticism is welcome, as long as you abide by the rule above.  I’m not looking for someone to grammar-ize me or whatever.  If that’s all you have to say, you can probably save your breath.  I know that sometimes mistakes happens.  It gets by us.  Whatever.  I try to be pretty good about this but I’m human.  I don’t need you to tell me that I misspelled something in paragraph seven, sentence four, chapter three, of whatever story you are currently reading.

-I really, really, really, really love character analysis.  A lot.  So if that’s what you want to talk to me about, please do not be frightened of my over-zealous nature and how I suddenly think I’m your best friend.  I know that I’m not.  I just get super excited by this and totally nerd out over it.  Ahem.  Moving on.

I think that’s it.   Maybe I’ll add to this as I go on?

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Review Replies for According to You:

Lavi: I really hope to update this one fairly frequently so you should be hearing more from me...a lot.  I’m kind of attached to Valentine at the moment.  In part because I just really sort of fell in love with his name and I’m a sucker for names.  It takes days, sometimes, to name a character that I’m going to write about.  His name was originally Delaney and I started writing it but it was just...I don’t know...too soft for the personality.  I wanted something with a harsher sound that also had a sort of...romance to it.  So Valentine won.

Fuzzipueo: Fun fact: This world was already built in Along the Underground.  It’s the same...world.  That was redundant.  Whatever—on we go.  It’s a different time by a decade or so and a different part of the world.  It’s also told from a more...human point of view, I guess?  I mean, if you read ATU, you know that Finn mentions vampires a time or two and that some humans have latent magic.  ATY really explores that through the Underworlders and their purpose—which, you will find out, includes staying out of the way of the Fey Courts.  I haven’t explained in great detail the connections there, but you’ll see them eventually.  I’m glad you like Valentine.  It’s a little bit difficult for me to write his voice, if only because of the lack of emotion.  He can come off as boring, so I had to give him a pretty sharp sense of humor.  He likes to make people laugh, even if he doesn’t actually find things funny on account of what he is.  That will also be explored later.

Tahn: OH MY GOSH I MISSED YOU!  *rolls all over*  This is not going to break your heart like BiTA, I promise.  Cross my heart.  You might need some glue.  You know I love a good tragedy, but this will ultimately have a happy ending.

Smint:  You will get updates on Parallel.  I sort of stopped writing it because people didn’t seem to review it much, so I sort of assumed they didn’t like it.  If people liked it though, I absolutely will continue it.
 

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Smint: You heard from me, look at that!  I’m just going to answer all of your reviews here.  Valentine will learn to do a lot of things in the upcoming chapters.  I really like Abraxus too.  He grows on you, once you get past the bratty attitude problems.

Emez: I’m always happy to hear that someone actually came looking for me and my stories.  I am really attached to Valentine and I already have this one outlined.  I know exactly how it ends, how everything ties together, and what I’m going to do.  So it should be updated fairly frequently.

Enys:  Aw, thank you :3  I love hearing stuff like that.

Lavi: What the creature is and why it was connected to Valentine will all be explained soon.  There are a lot of clues left behind throughout the outline that will be in the story, so look out for those.  Maybe you’ll figure everything out before it’s finished.

Anon-Anon: The double anonymous!  This is one of my favorites too.  Mostly because of Valentine—idk, he reminds me of a cross between Finn and Fox, and I loved both of them.  Of course, he has his own qualities that neither of them possess, but, you know, there are similarities.  I didn’t intend for it to happen that way.  I kind of let Valentine decide who Valentine was.


 

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Notes:  You guys can feel free to write things here too—additional questions, comments, thoughts, anything you want about anything that I’ve written.  Go for it.

Smint:  Answering all of your reviews here again, lovely.  I’m glad the replies make you happy.  I try to do them every few chapters.  I hope what the blood did to him didn’t disappoint you.  I love the idea of chocolate licking.  Perhaps chocolate licking for Valentine and Abraxus?  

KC: I originally thought about having Remi and Abraxus be some kind of lovers but it weirded me out too much.  So I decided to go with Remi being strictly into the ladies and having his lady-love as Valentine’s mother.  I don’t really think of Abraxus as Val’s pseudo-uncle though.  I mean, I totally see it because he and Remi are sort of brothers through Carrouc and both of them being Carrouc’s progeny.  I think Remi kind of thought of Abraxus as a charge—someone he felt responsible for and so he looked after him since Carrouc is such a douche.  Abraxus just has the utmost respect for Remi and that’s where his loyalty to Valentine comes in.

Lavi: Glad you thought so.  Much more Abraxus/Valentine smut to come.

Octo: I totally intend on finishing Along the Underground.  I promise.  I just have this issue with switching tenses.  I’m afraid if I go back to how I write Along the Underground, I’m going to have problems switching back to past-tense for Valentine’s voice.  So I’ll be updating this one primarily for awhile, but I will definitely be finishing Along the Underground.  I wouldn’t even know where to start in terms of getting things published or putting them elsewhere.  This is basically the only fiction site I pay attention to and I really only do this for fun.  I mean, it would be totally cool to be published, don’t get me wrong.  That’s awesome.  It’s just not my end goal.  I’m here to entertain people.  That’s all.

Jess:  Ahhhh I’m so glad to see you posting on this one!  <3333  I’m super stoked that you like it.
 

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Jess:  I missed you too!  I missed everyone!  Things have been so crazy in my personal life lately and then for awhile I just...lost the motivation to do anything.  But it’s better now.  I’m really glad you’re digging Valentine.  He’s one of my favorites.

Smint:  Yeah, this takes place before Along the Underground.  About fifteen-ish years after Rowan joined the Winter Court.  So he’s still an ass :c  Maybe someday Valentine will love him back, but Valentine needs to love himself before he commits to someone else, and he has a serious self-loathing issue.

KC: Finn/Rowan story is Along the Underground and it is allllmost finished.  I’m glad you found this one, as it ties in with it.  Rowan was a tragic ass.  In a lot of ways, that’s just who he comes to be.  You’ll see what happens with Valentine’s deal in the future.

Lavi: The thing I love about Valentine is that he makes the conscious choice to give a shit about other people.  He doesn’t do it because he cares—he doesn’t care.  He can’t.  He does it because, to Val, the world is black and white.  There’s only right or wrong.  Being descent to people is right.  He doesn’t do it out of love or hate or passion.  He just does it because he’s a genuinely good person—which, like you said, lends him a sense of innocence and maturity at the same time.  He doesn’t completely grasp how cruel the world really is, because he’s incapable of understand what cruel really is.  He knows that he has the ability to be a monster.  He knows that it would hurt people.  He doesn’t get why because he lacks the ability to feel the same emotions as them, but he still doesn’t want them in pain.

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BITA Review Replies:

Eme: OMG OMG OMG— you’re killing me.  I am so happy that you were this excited for an update.  I hope you have been equally pleased and excited by the fact that I’m actually consistently updating and ALMOST DONE!  WHAT?

Jess:  I missed Kita too.  He’s one of the strongest characters I’ve ever written—in a sort of...suffer in silence fashion, I guess?  He’s very stoic and very willing to shoulder the burden for people that he loves.  He’s a silent strength.  I kind of love him and I’m really sad that his story is almost over.  I might write some vignettes of just Kita and his sisters eventually.  Pre-Emory Kita.

Anon Questions:
So I'm curious- what ages are Atara, Emory, Kita, and Mack now? I can't quite remember what age they were at the start and I'm forgetting how much time has passed.

So almost three years have passed since the start.  That makes Atara nearly 20.  Emory is 25/26.  Kita is 21.  Mack is 27.
 

Edited by Alasdair
I cannot do math for Atara's age.

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Jess:  Everything I write has a tendency to lean toward heartbreaking :P

Moku Sui: Hey there, I remember reading your reviews on the last story, I think.  It’s good to see you’re still around.  I don’t want Emory to go dark either.  He has a sweet side.  Just has trouble getting in touch with it.

Anon: I’m not sure how you wanted to see it?  If he’d reacted around Atara, it would have just upset Atara.  This was really best for everyone involved.

I_A: This story was never supposed to be Fox and Cyril’s story.  It’s more Emory’s story than it is anyone else’s.  I understand being sad that Fox is gone, but if you read into Emory, he’s a lot like Fox.  He was supposed to be a lot like Fox—like a darker version of Fox that probably existed more in the years we don’t see Fox while Cyril is gone.  I know that Fox was sweet and charming and energetic.  I miss him too, but everyone dies eventually.  I’m glad you’re still reading, but if you have no real vested interest, I’m not sure why you are.  Fox isn’t coming back.  I might do little vignettes of them eventually, but his story is complete.

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Jess:  There will be a third installment for Emory’s HEA.  It was getting too long to launch into a whole other love story so the third installment will be mostly fluffy cuteness for Em, which I think he definitely deserves.  I am so glad you noticed the parallel between Emory’s story and Fox’s.  I really wanted it to come full circle there and I’m surprised nobody guessed what would happen earlier.  

Various Anons: No more Cyril chapters, unfortunately, but there’s the Atara one that you wanted.  This story is over.  There will be a third installment though.  My heart hurt writing the past few chapters, but it was important because Emory and Nikita do stand alone.  They don’t need each other the way that they used to.  Emory can stand on his own two feet and Nikita’s quest for redemption over his sister has been fulfilled.  Don’t worry though.  They get their HEA.  Like I told Jess, this story’s conflict was over and launching into another love story was too long.  So there will be a third installment of mostly fluffy stuff for Emory.

I never burn ants with magnifying glasses, but I am a therapist IRL.  I like to explore tragedy, grief, trauma, and the various ways people overcome it.  This is my outlet for that.  

Moku Sui: Kita’s father is actually a pretty awesome guy who does care for Emory and was good friends with Fox.  It’s more about the honor of the family and the traditional aspect of Glacians having lots of babies.  

Rose: Nikita’s real issue, I think, is leaving behind his sisters—primarily his dead sister.  He feels like she’s attached to the place he grew up.  Her body is there.  He also just watched the Bordelon family fall apart when Fox died and so he’s not keen on being the catalyst of such destruction for his own family.  Also, your Atara POV, coming right up.

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Jess:  You should totally email me so we can discuss these things in depth.  It’s in my profile on AFF.  Yes, the child is Emory’s.  Cassie is a lot of things, but she’s loyal to the Bordelon family and vehemently loyal to Emory, specifically.  Emory, as you’ll see soon, is doing a fair bit better than Nikita is.  Em would handle his heats alone, the same way he always has, since Cassie would be physically incapable of helping him with them.  Lian is kind of like Mack, really.  He’s super intelligent, but always underfoot and prone to making connections he probably shouldn’t make at his young age.  He’s old for his years.  He’s a little rebel, which is kind of Emory/Fox, but he’s also aware of the risks the way that Atara was.  He’s just young.  Cyril will pop up a few times, but a POV from Cyril is unlikely.  At this point, I only have plans for POV chapters from Emory and one other person that you can probably guess but I won’t divulge openly yet.  This is mostly Emory’s tale, anyway.  The specific question of whether or not leaving was worth it will eventually be asked of Nikita in the story, so you’ll get your answer from the horse’s mouth.

Anon:  To a happily ever after, of course.  That’s where this is going.

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Rose: I always try to yank the heart out through the chest.  It’s how I roll.  The frequent updates have been because this is sort of just...pouring out of me.  I don’t even know.

Various Anons: Cyril and Kinnon?  Unlikely.  I think Emory would have a coronary heart attack and I don’t know that Cyril will ever find someone he wants to be with the way that he was with Fox.  I think he’s probably content just watching his kids grow and have their own families.  Maybe he has a dog or a cat to keep him company.

CyArsonix: Ooooh I always love seeing new names pop up in my reviews.  You’re not entirely wrong and not entirely right. ;)

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CyArsonix: It’s definitely his, I promise.  Cassie wouldn’t do that.  Her well-being depends entirely on Emory’s whims.  She wouldn’t jeopardize that.

Kat: I’m glad you like it!  I don’t think I’ve seen you review before.  I always love seeing new reviewers!  

Various Anons:  I’m kind of surprised by the Cassie hate I get in the reviews.  I kind of like Cassie.  I didn’t think that I would when I did the character outline for her, but she is quite fond of Emory and he adores her to little pieces.  I just think of Em and Kita as soulmates the way that Fox and Cyril were, with a...darker beginning.  So Cassie will never be what Kita was to Emory.  

You want a 3+ tag?  Lol.  As much as I would like an Emory/Cassie/Nikita sandwich, it’s not something Nikita would ever do.  He doesn’t like the girls.  At all.

Moku Sui: Is that a bad oh boy? D:

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Grapefruit:  I did intend to kill Cassie off, actually.  It’s in the original outline but I had to go back and do a major re-work because I decided she complimented Emory’s personality way too much to kill her off.  It was far too easy.  I felt bad for wanting to kill her off because I love her to pieces.  She’s one of my favorites.

BallardFam: Cassie is very, very honest with herself and people around her.  It’s her most important quality and what she’s most proud of.

Various Anons:  There will be a few chapters that take place with heavy Immaran influence, so you’ll get a good feel of their culture.  They’re not homophobic, by any means, but they’re very old school like our monarchies used to be.  Everyone is closely related, everyone is inter-marrying to perfect their breeding.  Cassie doesn’t dislike Nikita.  She worries about Emory’s state of mind.  She needs him functioning for the sake of Fox now.  

I can’t tell you if Sebastian will make an appearance, though I’m sure you can guess by now.

CyArsonix: I don’t know that anyone can hate Nikita for very long.  He’s just one of those people that grows on you.  When you think about Atara’s outburst, you have to put yourself in Atara’s shoes.  He had to watch Emory fall apart and carry the weight of it when he wasn’t functioning.  He already went through that.  In his mind, Emory had suffered more than enough when Nikita decided to leave and he’s just livid that someone so needlessly hurt him again.
 

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Golden Tuna:  Cassie is one of my favorite narrators to write.  I’m really excited to introduce her relationship with Sebastian in the upcoming chapters.

Various Anons:  I don’t think there really is an ax to fall.  Emory is genuinely just...happy now.  The only issue to clear up is Cassie.  Nikita did take Emory to task about her.  I think Emory is just so caught up in finally having what he wants that he fails to see the misery around him.  This was a wake-up call.

Moku_Sui: I will absolutely do that ;)

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Eme: This might surprise you, but I generally get a lot of hate about Atara.  People really seem to take issue with him as a person.  Personally, I think Atara is one of the more level-headed people in the series and he’s one of my favorites because of that.  Writing Atara, who is almost totally normal and stable, is like a breath of fresh air.  I’m really glad you like him so much.  He doesn’t get nearly the amount of affection that he should get.  He has grown a lot and he’s really a sweetheart full of idealistic wishes and daydreams.  He has a beautiful way of looking at the world and I envy that aspect of him.  You have no idea how much it means to me to hear that you relate to him and that I was able to connect him with you like that.  It really made my day to get that review <3

CyArsonix: Emory doesn’t actually prefer men.  He has no preference at all.  As long as there is an attraction there, Emory is “all systems go” so to speak.  Atara is going to narrate in one of the upcoming chapters and you’ll get a better idea of why he’s so irate about this whole situation.  It has less to do with Cassie and more to do with this deep fear he has of Emory getting hurt again.  He has seen Emory get hurt more than enough.  Atara has become very protective of the people he cares for.  You can see that in how he sort of smothers Lian and so that’s really where his frustration comes from.  He’s friends with Cassie, too.  He cares for her feelings and really, Emory WAS pretty insensitive but that’s just who he is.  You are right that she is Immaran and used to this sort of thing happening around her.  He isn’t the first king to screw around.  He won’t be the last.  It has only been a few weeks though, so Cassie is still pretty raw and Atara is still pretty worried.

But here, have some pretty Sebastian Brighton to take your mind off of how mad everyone is at everyone else!

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Various Anons:  I love that I got a review that says, “Not liking Sebastian” and then got a review that says, “Ooooh l’m liking Sebastian!” within four minutes of each other.  I love that he’s faceted enough for everyone to have their own opinions of him.  Admittedly, I do hope he grows on those of you that don’t like him.  The Sons are very well-trained, as you saw when Sebastian interrupted that ambush, but like any group of hired mercenaries or assassins, there are a number among them that are...sloppy.  

This is the first M/F I’ve done here or anywhere, actually.  I have an idea for an entirely M/F story though.  I’m just not super comfortable writing hetero stuff yet.  I’m glad you like it!

It always makes my day to get reviews from you guys <3

Celine:  I hope I explained the political aspect of it a little bit better for you.  It would absolutely be foolish to kill Atara, if only because Emory would burn Immara to the ground without regard to human life.  He would lose his mind.  But greed and human prejudice often wins out over common sense and the Immarans are very greedy and very prejudice against the Lierian people.

Moku_Sui: You shall see.  Don’t worry about Sebastian.  He’s pretty resilient.

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