Discussing the latest chapter

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This topic contains 42 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by  ArielFetters 1 year ago.

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  • #505

    metaladdict
    Participant

    I thought It might be handy to start a topic discussing the latest chapter. That being chapter 14 when I post this.

    My take on it:
    It was good to see a couple of the old guys back with Shepard. Especially Vega. The little bit of humor with jacob assured me that he is going to be actual okay guy.

    I thought the technology revealed in this chapter gave us good actual idea that, you know, the reapers actually have crazy ass technology. I personally think their going to use this technology to just circumvent most of the defenses the people of the galaxy have in the following way:

    Taking FTL near a home world, everyone goes crazy and send all their fleets back to defend said home world. And BANG hit in the back.

    I do not care much for the Garrus chapter. Mainly because I think Garrus works best when interacting with someone, not monologuing in his head.

  • #507

    Logical Premise
    Keymaster

    That trick isn’t even the extent of the bullshit they can pull with a relay. It’s a directional , focused wormhole generator that creates tunnels of fucked-up false space where light goes faster. There isn’t anything stopping them from using every mass relay in the galaxy as giant rail cannons, or to have them fling unstable strings into the nearest sta cluster.

    Garrus…eh. I’m not happy with it but not sure how to handle it either, since Garrus takes more from the Punisher than Batman in my opinion, and the Punisher was ALWAYS in his own head.

    Purge the alien. Kill the heretic. Suffer not the witch to live.

  • #510

    metaladdict
    Participant

    Maybe an effort should be shown from the other guys in Garrus his group to try and cheer him up. We could be laughing our asses off and Garrus would still be sad. It would show the contrast between us and Garrus and realize he isn’t happy.

  • #984

    ArielFetters
    Participant

    Chapter 30

    The bits with Bray work great for a ‘Am I the only sane person here?’ segment, and give you some idea of what Aria considers ‘normal’. Also, the bits with her contacting her mother…. totally unexpected, and seemed kinda jarring. I know you’ve got a reason, but until it comes to light it seems kinda out of character for her to say anything to her mother other than die screaming.

    As for Vigil, the EMP bit seems interesting, though I thin it’d be more EMF since it’s not a single pulse. Great way for people to be able to track that digi-troll though 🙂 Also proves Aria’s smarter than, well, the citadel since she picked up on it inside 12 hours, and they didn’t figure it out in however many weeks.

    Shepard and Grunt is going to be Hilarious. I could totally see Shepard going to Krul asking for ‘How do you be a Krogan mommy’ advice. Especially if, as in many fics, the (Not) Little guy imprinted on her. Oh, and if people don’t start calling Grunt Shepard Junior, I’ll be sad lol

    Once it won’t kill him, Shepard and Garrus need to get absolutely ‘drown your brain’ drunk.

    The bit with Sensat making Shep feel guilty was grat, and adds some humanity to her. Makes her less broken, sorta.

    The bit with Shepard’s Driving, I totally expected someone to say something. Mordin maybe, or Jack.

    My only other suggestion is to have Joker go bonkers about the internet response to Shepard’s exit from Omega. I could totally see him having the time of his life with that. Garrus too.

    Overall loved the chapter. Bit slow, but this kinda chapter has to be slow so that’s not a negative. Lot of plot devices set out and teased, a few questions answered, and the bands starting to get back together.

  • #986

    NPC
    Participant

    I liked the Aria and Thana mother daughter scene. I read it as two very powerful people, one who knows she has her back against the wall. Who both know they could be so much more powerful if they worked together. Yet they can’t. The practical/power-hungry side is screaming to suck it up and make nice, but their pride won’t allow it. Thana sees Aria abandoning her and her family as treason and Aria sees her mother as the murderess of her love and child and the Thirty’s betrayal of their whole society as proof of how broke the asari are. Neither can budge, if they did they wouldn’t be the Pirate Queen of Omega or the High Queen Matriarch of the Asari respectively.

    The bits with Shepard, Garrus, and the Angels didn’t feel great but I don’t think they were meant to. It was an awkward situation where the characters don’t know whats going to happen or what they can expect.

    The oldest jobs that could be consider true professions are prostitutes, mercenaries, and brewers in that order. Money, sex, war, and drugs. I guess that tells you all you need to know about the human race. I don't know if I should be sad about that or scream HUMANITY FUCK YEAH!

    Bitch, I'm wearing kinky boots and leather. Do you really think your going to win this fight?

  • #987

    Himura
    Participant

    I confess Aria’s call to her mother caught me off guard but in a positive way. The interaction between them had enough tension to convey the bad blood between them without degenerating into name calling.

    Seeing them working together and in close proximity would certainly be fun.

    I’m less thrilled about the scenes taking place on Shepard’s base station. They weren’t the most engaging. Except for the bits and pieces where TIM passed on some interesting information about the events on Illium.

    I’m not so sure about Tazzik buying it. I remember something about the Broker saying they would fake it or some such. I don’t remember rightly.

  • #992

    Logical Premise
    Keymaster

    This is one of the reasons why I ended up scrapping it so many times.

    Some of it is just structurally ‘there’ so I can move on without yet another “tell not show” segement of me saying everyone was already settled in and had met and stuff.

    Purge the alien. Kill the heretic. Suffer not the witch to live.

  • #1000

    Himura
    Participant

    This is a bit Off Topic as the thread is about the latest chapter but I thought the title Vengeful Iron Sunset rang some bells.

    So I checked the Officer Edition file and lo and behold:

    Vengeful: rescue operations

    Iron: no retreat authorized. Can be any posture but units are to fight to the last ship and last man.

    Sunset: planetary invasion or insertion

    So yeah.

  • #1001

    NPC
    Participant

    Nice catch Himura!

    The oldest jobs that could be consider true professions are prostitutes, mercenaries, and brewers in that order. Money, sex, war, and drugs. I guess that tells you all you need to know about the human race. I don't know if I should be sad about that or scream HUMANITY FUCK YEAH!

    Bitch, I'm wearing kinky boots and leather. Do you really think your going to win this fight?

  • #1005

    Logical Premise
    Keymaster

    So … yeah … Dies Irae.

    Someone on the DLP forums made a comment about how the Collectors would take to being interfered with and I may have sort of possibly offered up an entire world to Khorne.

    Purge the alien. Kill the heretic. Suffer not the witch to live.

  • #1006

    Liethr
    Participant

    I may have sort of possibly offered up an entire world to Khorne.

    Oh god, is it Dirth?

  • #1010

    ArielFetters
    Participant

    The bit with Tela Vasir was great. A bit slow, but it worked perfectly to give people a bit more of an idea about the life of a Spectre. The bits with her nearly being killed because of Delacor’s bad luck were ludicrous and hilarious, adding a bit of needed levity.

    The bit with Delacor was solid too, and a great foundation for Horizon. That whole ‘Pilot Program’ thing in the game never did make much sense. I gotta ask though. What happened to Ash and Kaiden’s kid? Is it a girl? A Boy? Twins or more?

    The section with Tazzik and the Broker was good. Not tense though. It had more of a ‘Tazzik, go kill these people because they’re annoying the fuck outta me’.

    The section with Liara/Tel/Thyta. Did Liara lose an eye? If so, how? Is she wearing an eyepatch now? She doesn’t seem surprised to see Athyta. That whole section had a huge ‘Somethng major happened’ feel with no details. Almost as if you skipped a chapter, or I missed one somewhere. The part with Athyta demanding to go along with Liara was great though, and captured that ‘We’re all gonna die, so let’s do it together and make it count for something’ vibe.

    Shepard and Garrus section. It’s great they had a sit down and talk time, and I realize they’re sorting shit out, but, and I hate to say it, We all know Shepard’s been through a lotta shit. Gonna have to go Ahern on this one. The bit where Garrus talks about light though, that was solid, and would, I’d think, help serve as a kick in the shorts for Shepard. Her best friend is telling her to have hope. Now, I know it’s more than possible to literally beat the hope out of someone, and Shepard might be there, but even then someone with no hope can sit there and say ‘Whether or not the universe is goodness and light in the end or not I don’t give a shit. I simply refuse to let them win’. It’s not hope, but it’s resolve, and from what my therapist tells me, it might someday become hope. Theoretically. Until then, as I tell people, for me the word’s simply a statement on preferred odds.

    Overall a good chapter, but it feels like we skipped one somewhere, especially with the section concerning Liara. Good foundational work, lot of setting up for future events in a realistic manner.

  • #1015

    Logical Premise
    Keymaster

    Earlier on in the first Liara chapter, it was mentioned that she lost an eye and her left forearm in the ending events of And Then There Were None.

    It’s why the little Liara-chiibi logo has a cybernetic eye in the picture.

    Purge the alien. Kill the heretic. Suffer not the witch to live.

    • #1016

      ArielFetters
      Participant

      Ah. Must’ve missed it then. I’ll go re-read 🙂

  • #1018

    Himura
    Participant

    That was some heavy stuff going around in this chapter. Rather depressing, too. But I think the writing verged just so on becoming overwrought with grimness. I say verging because it toed the line and only flirted with it, which I think was the key to creating a gloomy and depressing atmosphere for the parts with Liara and Telanya and to a lesser degree for Garrus, Shepard segment without going overboard and smothering everything in despair.

    If I had to pick two instance I like the most in this chapter they would be the opening scene from Liara-Telanya part.

    All their success laid bare, the Vantirius Information System and its raise to prominence to the point where they can cherry-pick their contracts. The wealth they accumulated, the prestige and respect that came with being successful and good at their job. Hell, they even got some rep with STG for pooling wool over everyone’s eyes. That made me smile.

    Only for the illusion of success to come apart as we take a look inside their heads and see the desolation.

    I’m sad we didn’t get a mention of Liara’s phantom pains from the bond she shared(shares) with Shepard. I think it would be a good addition to have it mentioned but I only thought about it during a reread :/.

    Then there is their desperation to kill Tetrimus before they burn out and die. I couldn’t help but shake my head at that. Come on. They’re in no state to pit themselves against the murder machine that is Tetrimus Rakora. That’s just silly. Liara is coming at the seams. She’s suffering hallucinations for god’s sake! Can’t eat or sleep. She’s sick. And Telanya isn’t in a much better position.

    In fact, I’d say Telanya is far off in a worse condition than Liara who at least enjoys the constitution of the Thirty while Telanya is plain, stock asari. Of the two of them I’d say the other is in a far worse condition even with Liara suffering from bond severance…

    To think they want to go after Tetrimus is – I don’t want to say it but I feel I have to – beyond stupid. So what if they have anti-biotic gear? Didn’t Benezia just power through something similar? So what if Tetrimus is an old, crippled turian? Neither Telanya nor Liara are in peak physical, to say nothing of mental, condition.

    I feel that part failed to be presented as tragic or desperate, and simply came out as stupid rearing its ugly head in Liara and Telanya. It kind of killed the mood for me which is a pity as their segment was my favorite of the whole chapter and bringing it to an end like that made me wince.

    Aethyta also felt off somehow. I can’t put my finger on it but something didn’t mesh.

    Garrus and Shepard banter was as good as always and reminded me of the best from the first story. There’s just this easy camaraderie between them that feels natural. Of course, Garrus took the cake with bringing up some personal info about the people Shepard already recruited and it ties nicely with the conversation they had in the previous chapter when Shepard told him she couldn’t trust anybody else but him. I failed to comment on that when Ch. 30 came out but Sara pointing how Joker and Tali are more than a bit compromised by TIM was a mind-blowing experience for her character and character development.

    The old Sara would get violent and threatening is someone even insinuated Joker or Tali weren’t 100% behind her. Especially the Sara who just got enobled. Just to remind everyone how she reacted to Jiong talking about crew’s PRIDE rating.

    Now she’s changed and despite all I’d say for the better. Hell, I think if we put Sara as she’s right now on the SR-1 when the first story took off I’m not so sure she would fall for Liara. Certainly she wouldn’t be so eager to let someone inside her head…

    So yeah, this convo between Garrus and Sara and the one from the previous chapter start painting a really nice and vivid picture of who Sara is right now. And hell that was a better window into her soul than Kelly’s psycho-babble.

    So, Author, enjoy the applause. You deserve it.

    I’ll admit I wasn’t very keen on the previous chapter’s dialog between Sara and Garrus but with what we received with Ch. 31 I have to say everything tied up nicely and gave us lots of insight.

    I’ll touch upon Kasumi for a moment before moving on to the Vasir, Delacor, Broker parts.

    So our space ninja is as dirty as the rest of the crew? Good. I like Kas enough in the games but then ME3 did her the disservice of painting her as a bit of a coward, content to let the galaxy bleed as long as she could steal… Yeah, not my most favorite part of the ME3. It could have been handled in a different way but alas, spotty characterization. Who knew it could happen in a video game? :/

    Vasir/Delcor/Broker parts were all building up to what we’re going to see in the next couple chapters so I’ll just say that they’re good and did what they were designed to do. Marching orders from the superiors and creating good plot points to be exploited in the future. Essentially, setting the stage.

    • #1029

      ArielFetters
      Participant

      Himura, I think at this point Liara, Tel, and Athyta are hoping to die, and their only real goal in life is to take Tetrimus with ’em. They’ve lost everything they care about, or are watching it die before them, so all they really have left is revenge.

      When the only things you have left are rage and pain, trust me. Thinking like that’s called having a good day.

  • #1030

    Himura
    Participant

    Oh, believe me I know that’s what they’re hoping for. It’s the fact that once upon a time they faced Tetrimus with Team Badass right there with them. Tetrimus walked over all of them. Pel, Leng, Miranda, Garrus, Liara, Telanya, Aethyta, Tali and Thane. They were curbstomped.

    I’m all for revenge, but as they are it’s poorly thought out. Liara and Tel are dying, you can practically feel it in how they speak. Their mental capacities are degrading. I don’t know about their biotics but Liara is suffering from hallucinations. It’s that bad.

    This is suicide by Tetrimus.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 7 months ago by  Himura.
  • #1035

    Logical Premise
    Keymaster

    Suicide by Tetrimus is a fairly apt description. Even in the farked-up state they are in they could at least make him work a bit for it (certainly more than they did the first time they fought)…

    But even if they were both in good health, sane and rested they don’t have what it takes. Unlike Shepard, who is basically a techno-monster, or Garrus, who is rocking upgraded mil-spec weapons and armor technology, they’re basically just more of the same that they were.

    They have a lot more experience, more toys, and their biotics are sharper and stronger, but they don’t have any thing nasty except for Liara’s decent but not great warp sword ability.

    Aethyta is also not 100%, as she’s old, hasn’t had a chance to practice or fight in over two years, and has a cybernetic link in her spine which she’s not used to yet. Then again, her skills are high enough that she is always a threat — she was the only one to wound Tetrimus in the first fight, and he hasn’t forgotten that.

    Purge the alien. Kill the heretic. Suffer not the witch to live.

  • #1049

    ArielFetters
    Participant

    First off I gotta say having Krul actng as the Shepard clan shaman is fricking BRILLIANT! Only a Krogan would’ve led a life fucked up enough to give Shepard some perspective, and having Grunt be, essentially, her son will give her something outside herself to focus on. The potential there, between Shepard the mom/recovering headcase/space jesus, Grunt the child/wrecking ball, and Krul, the shaman is mind boggling.

    That said, the bit with the collectors was solid. It gives us a bit more insight into how they operate and why they’re not all dead.

    The section between that and Shepard/Grunt/Krul was very talky-not-showy but I don’t see how it could be done differently without a lot more page time.

    Shepard’s reactions to the collector attack seemed okay, but for some reason didn’t hit me as an ‘Oh shit!’ moment for her.

    Delacor having to deal with the colonists was good. It gives us more insight into how wildcat colonists deal with the SA/Citadel, and shows that Delacor can be more than a disaster magnet. His reactions to the collector attack were solid, and did get across that ‘Oh Shit’ feel, though I think you could’ve made it a bit more frentic by adding in voice tags.

    For Instance
    His Eyes widened as he slapped his emergency command band, interrupting her.
    could be…
    His eyes widened and he stabbed a finger at the emergency command channel override.

    That’s just my 2 cents however, and like we say in the writing group I’m part of whenever someone makes a suggestion, your mileage may vary.

    Delecor’s final line for the chapter was epic though. 🙂

    The sections with Ash fighting and Shep’s arrival I’ll go into later. Brain crashing now lol.

  • #1074

    AA
    Participant

    Chapter 33.

    So here it goes: all the story so far is really cool and well written.
    Some parts are…HAX – like Shepard wielding a sword, but still, really cool.
    However… sending the whole system supernova?! Its a bit much, in my opinion. A better ending would have been : the Collectors defeated (in this battle) and Shepard dealing with the aftermath. Just my honest opinion.
    Take care dude!

  • #1075

    ArielFetters
    Participant

    AA pretty much said what I was going to. It was great seeig Shepard finally use the warp sword, and seeing the collectors reaction to it. It also have us a great sense of scale since the ships the collectors were fighting were blowing normal ships out of the sky like toys, and here the collectors are, hammering the hell out of them with upgraded freighters, not even actual battleships.
    The supernova thing makes no sense however.
    I think however that the collectors would retreat, wait for a better opportunity, and then hit again, or simply leave Horizon be. They want biomass for the proto-reaper, so obliterating an entire solar system full of potential biomass is counterproductive. If they were thinking to destroy their enemies, it’s true they’d kill a lot of them, but the most important of them would be able to get away.
    It was good to see Delacor finally brow a set of balls, man up, and say ‘Fuck alla you, I’m gonna take as many with me as possible’ and try to ram them with the Kazan. I’m kinda surprised Shepard had no reaction to the Kazan tho. It was her flagship for a while and she was heavily involved in refitting it.
    Seeing Williams again was great, as was her wanting to get home to her and Kaiden’s son. Her reaction to the ruthless practicality of Shepard’s group after the fighting ended was perfect too, as was Jiong’s. He’s gonna know when a situation’s not survivable, and the intel he needed to relay was pretty obviously more important than pissing off Shepard.
    Overall a great chater, with an actual Battle for Horizon, just with a ‘wtf’ ending.

  • #1076

    ZeroSumGame
    Participant

    I, for one, like the ending.

    BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD.

    Honesty may be the best policy, but it's important to remember that by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy.

  • #1077

    Himura
    Participant

    My own take on the mininova situation is as follow:
    – The Collectors are ‘working on a budget’ and their resources are quite finite. Every loss of equipment, be that weaponry or ship hurts them.

    – They are somewhat petty and bitter and prone to: ‘No! Fuck You!’ scenarios as demonstrated with Horizon’s local star.

    – They’re proud but also scared. Proud of their lost race and heritage but scared shitless of the Ascended and what they’ve done to their people.

    The whole mininova situation is equal parts pettiness, fear, shock tactics and terror campaign designed to cow the Council races. They’re working on a schedule here and while stretching the time table as much as possible would be favorable it’s to be done delicately. Losing so much biomass is also a serious setback.

    Note that Ishan wasn’t averse to a setback as that’d give him more time to prepare their game plan for when the Ascended entered the Milky Way.

    But he’s also incensed about setbacks that cast him and the curator race in a bad light before his overlords.

  • #1118

    ArielFetters
    Participant

    Review time! (Ch 34)

    The bit with the civvies up front was okay, but really didn’t have that frantic ‘Get to the choppa!’ feel. It did lay the groundwork for civvies escaping however, whch was good.

    Seeing Shepard finally hit her endurance limit’s great however. It makes her more human, less a feral wrecking ball with super biotics and a fucked up past. Her reactions to her losses also showed growth on her part. She didn’t like losing troops, but she knew things could easily have gone a lot worse so she’s trying to look on, if not the bright side, the not so dark side. Same for her interactions with timmy. She doesn’t like what’s going on, but she’s finally realized that fucked up as it all is, it’s still the best of all options.

    Incorporating media reaction was awesome however, and the fact Shepard’s thought to check on the ‘hearts and minds’ possibilities shows again that she’s grown enough to look at the strategic aspects of a situation, not just the tactical. It also shows she’s getting into the game enough to give a damn instead of simply bitch about it. Same for her conversation with Tim. She’s getting into strategy, not just tactics, and she’s accepting that she doesn’t have to agree with what he says to still see the value of it. It also shows that she’s finally learning to handle being outside her mental and emotional comfort zones without going apeshit in the process.

    Tela and Ahern’s interactions were great and really captured that ‘old friends’ vibe. That said, I dunno why but EDI’s sudden revelations regarding Shepard just feel off. Too soon maybe, or too fast. Not sure, but it could simply be the fact I’m sick as a dog and not thinking completely straight. Edi being into Porn however, that had me LOL’ing bigtime. Great work making her even more distinct than she already was and injecting some humor into things in the process. 🙂

    The council being a bunch of self serving idiots was, well, an all too realistic rendition of their short sighted idiocy. That said, seeing Ahern show up and say ‘Sup? Shep’s alive, peace out bitches’ was awesome, as was that Turian officer not liking him and Sparatus’s reaction. Good stuff. Using Tela to contact Shepard’s their best bet, but I don’t remember if Shepard’s ever actually met Tela. I’d need to re-read everything and I can’t focus long enough to do that atm.

    Lastly the bit with Susan. Again, just felt off. Sure it’s been two years, but even an organization as ruthless as the Commisars would find better ways to use someone like her than as experiment fodder. Also, her being blamed for Liara’s “Death” makes no sense. Commisars would be fact-oriented enough to see she did everything she could and got wrecked in the process. They might not give her an attagirl, but blaming her would be blatant scapegoat-ism and they just strike me as the sort to focus on the facts and be realistic about the possibilities. Also, when Shepard met Chisolm mentioned Susan he said she’d been hurt pretty badly, not blamed or screwed over. He doesn’t strike me as the sort to sugarcoat the facts, so that left me with the feeling she was on limited duty, maybe as a teacher or the commisar version of a support person. Not subjected to two years of torture and brain-fuckery.

    Overall I liked the chapter. There were, as I mentioned, a couple hiccoughs for me but it had real character development and pointed us at Illium, as well as setting up a reunion between Shepard and Liara.

  • #1119

    Himura
    Participant

    I’m a little miffed we didn’t get to see what happened to Traynor’s parents but ‘oh well’ – I’m sure it will come up in a discussion or scene further down the line.

    Overall, the segment with Gerald felt good. No hero antics or bravado, just a simple man trying to get himself and his wife to safety. In a story full of raging badasses and conniving shits in nice suits and dresses seeing a regular man doing something was a breath of fresh air.

    My one nitpick about is that the wife was a bit passive.

    And yes, finally, Jack came up in a convo between Kelly and Shepard. Hell, it was about damn time these two touched upon that subject – even if only for Shepard to come to the conclusion Jack needs training and pronto.

    In the game I was always a bit hacked off how non-professionals had the chops to hang around the big guys and galls(Shep, Samara, Zaeed) and keep up. So it was cool that LP made a conscious effort to portray Jack as struggling. She got messed up on Korlus and now on Horizon. Awesome. It goes to show that this is a serious business and there will be no learning curve and playing catch up for people like Jack who besides her biotics and sheer grit doesn’t have much else going for her. She’s a scrawny, traumatized kid with a chip on her shoulder and only her smarts and biotics to keep her alive and ahead of the folks that want to do her in.

    The Council scene… it isn’t my favorite by a long shot but the way LP wrote the Collectors necessities certain things and behavior from characters that don’t have a clear picture of what is going on.

    But holy fuck did Thin’Koris come off as insincere. I hope Udina punches him at least once in the coming chapters or before the story is over. I’m bloody sick of quarians and the goddamn geth. I still find it hilarious that the war is going on because what’s going to happen in the event the geth are defeated? The quarians are going to move back to Rannoch? How, there’re quarians already there. Another war? Civil war this time? The whole situation is messed beyond belief. Wonder how’s that going to pan out.

    Right. So Susan. Apparently WOG is that what happened to her is my fault. Yup. Once upon a time I asked about her character on DLP and apparently that gave LP some ideas. So, yeah. Ouch. Still, I expected much, much worse.

    At the core of her being she’s still Susan. They didn’t take that away and that’s enough for me. I was thinking we would get back some Samara-esque walking, talking statue, someone we wouldn’t be able to recognize as Susan from the first and second stories.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 5 months ago by  Himura.
  • #1123

    findorlol
    Participant

    Hey,
    On the topic of the Susan, I noticed there was some discrepancies about her actions while Shepard was being revived by Ceberus (Chapters 12 and 34).

    I do realize that these accounts were from the different point of views and that narrators might have incomplete or inaccurate information. This would be very logical especially on Susan’s case, since her state of mind seems to be highly effected. However, those differences seem to be quite substantial: e.g. Susan’s self-narration doesn’t mention of her being assigned to Spectre Ross and according to Udina she lost her eye in the same incident that killed Ross (instead of in the part of stopping an escape attempt on Earth). Furthermore even if this would be the same incident, it would be odd for Commissariat to assign her as prestigious position as a political officer of Humanity’s Spectre, if they would be so highly displeased of her about events following destruction Normandy SR-1. And this would also be a weird thing for Udina to misremember since Humanity’s Specters are very much within his sphere of influence.

    So those were some my nit-pickings about the last paragraph. Overall loved the chapter and can’t wait for more.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 5 months ago by  findorlol.
  • #1125

    Himura
    Participant

    Hmmm. You raise an interesting point, @findorlol. I’m just going to add that Susan is an unreliable narrator in her segment of the chapter. In fact, she goes to acknowledge that she underwent chemical mind wipes in between her reporting to the board and the time since Sara died.

    There’s another angle here. From the Cerberus files LP gave us we know that the Commissariat loves to play tricks with their people and feed them false memories to create a persona of the future commissar. That happened with Jiong, as his memories didn’t mesh up with what we were let know from his brother.

    So chances are that what Susan think happened didn’t happen at all, and the commissariat constructed those memories to hide what really went down. Like for example her being injured while working with Ross.

    I think it would be a child’s play to substitute one set of memories with another.

  • #1126

    findorlol
    Participant

    @himura, yes I agree it would be totally in line with what we know of Commissariat to manipulate memories that way. And in my opinion that would be very clever use of different narrative perspectives. However, for me that then would really beg the question – why?

    Assuming that Udina’s account is correct and Susan is being manipulated, I just can’t see the logic behind the actions of Commissariat. Why to see all the trouble for destabilizing Susan’s mental state? Because of Anderson? Are they in some indirect way trying to prevent NOVENSILES? To protect it? Furthermore, I would assume that manipulation of that sort would take some time whereas thread of her disposal seemed to be quite real (several sources has mentioned it) and the decision of appointing her to Anderson seems to be very recent (caused by the indirect influence of Shepard/TIM).

    Also, there would have to be some kind of gain from the manipulation, in other words Commissariat believing that this way Susan is more effective to complete whatever mission she actually has with Anderson. That would be the only logical reason if they actually thrust her and all of their “disapproval” is just smoke and mirrors.

  • #1127

    Himura
    Participant

    I suspect the Commissariat is working their own angle in all of this. Very likely one that is irrespective, or maybe even contrary to the agenda pushed by the High Lords of Sol. I wouldn’t be surprised if that was the case.

    There’s also the fact that it looks like at least some of the goals of the Commissariat are in line with those of Jack Harper. How those two align with one another is a mystery but the relationship existed since before Ferros and the thorian debacle went down. The very fact that Shepard met with a high-ranking commissar shorty after she was resurrected and they did a fair impression of sharing intelligence between their respective organizations tells me the Commissariat, or at least a part of it, will play a role in the coming events.

    One more thing. TIM would most likely reach to some of the commissars if only to stack the odds in Shepard’s favor when she reveals her survival/existence/new-lease-on-life.

    Shepard’s favorable and working relationship with the Commissariat was mentioned enough time throughout the saga to make me wonder how long LP has been setting this thing up.

    I guess in the end the question remains: what’s Susan’s role in all of this?

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 4 months ago by  Himura.
  • #1137

    Logical Premise
    Keymaster

    You two are fumbling very close to something I didn’t expect people to pick up on. Blast.

    Let me reframe this in a different fashion, with some clarification.

    Susan was injured in the battle where Ross was killed, and that’s where she lost her eye. The timeframe on that was actually established by a small snippet in the ANN Media Archives — Ross died on Vindictrus roughly nineteen months after Shepard died.

    Susan believes she was stripped of her rank and shipped off and suffered a series of performance failures and setbacks. Ross’s death was preventable, and attributed to Susan’s failure.

    She was… altered at that point. And some of what she thinks she experienced actually happened, and some of it didn’t.

    The question, of course, is not ‘why’ but ‘who’ , now isn’t it? Who benefits from a slightly traumatized Commissar, bitter and near hopeless?

    Purge the alien. Kill the heretic. Suffer not the witch to live.

  • #1139

    findorlol
    Participant

    That’s an interesting question – who would have both motive and means to influence Commissariat.

    The second requirement eliminates the most of players of the Game (assuming that this isn’t some internal Commissariat business), since they seem to be quite opposed to the outside influences except the Lords of Sol (Ceberus files on Commissariat descripted some of this, if I remember correctly).

    And to speculate about the other, let’s assume that using her as Anderson’s political officer was the original goal since having some other unknown goals make the guessing next to impossible. That would suggest that it’s related to NOVENSILES since very few people outside Ceberus were aware of Shepard’s upcoming revival at that point.

    I might be complete of the target here but my guess would be President Windsor. He would probably have still some influence among the Commissariat, especially with those elements of Commissariat that feel the direction Manswells are taking is harmful for Alliance. He would also access to very limited resources at that point of time and be forced to use some more indirect ways to acquire both reliable and, if things go south, deniable agents to oppose the Manswells.

  • #1140

    Himura
    Participant

    My money’s on Cerberus. Certain elements of the Commissariat go way back to working with or along Cerberus. Jason Dunn and the mess(and especially the aftermath) that was Cerberus HQ in the first story, just to name one instance where the two organizations worked together in one fashion or another.

    But there’s another player in the game, @findorlol. Richard Williams who wants to clear his path of that geriatric obstruction that is papa Manswell. While it’s a long shot it’d not surprise me if he had a hand in all this. He’s already stirring shit within the Manswell family by allying with Helga Manswell and the two sabotaging papa Max’s tissue samples needed to convert him into cyborg.

    If Windsor is involved and I think he might be then he has the motive and drive to see his vengeance delivered upon those who hurt his family and derailed his plans. In fact, he might be the front man of the coming turmoil. Between Cerberus and Commissariat, as well a number of noble families he would be able to pull off a lot and accomplish more.

    I think we can all agree that a lot is happening behind the scenes.

    Perhaps the author is willing to shed some light on this matter? / nudge-nudge, wink-wink /

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 4 months ago by  Himura.
    • This reply was modified 1 year, 4 months ago by  Himura.
  • #1144

    findorlol
    Participant

    @himura While I agree that Ceberus is a fair possibility and that TIM has at least recently (around Chapter 34) used some of his influence for this, I don’ really think that the timeline matches up. Assuming that the plan was initialized at time of Ross’ death, it would put it around 6 mounts prior to Shepard’s waking up. I just got the feeling that Ceberus’ interest doesn’t reach out that far. Furthermore, in the Ceberus files they describe only two current Commissariat assets (one being Chisholm) and the overall tone were simply that Commissariat wasn’t worthy of the trouble due the close connection to Lords of Sol, extensive oversight and difficulty of recruitment.

    I hadn’t actually thought about Williams, though I really can’t see a motive for him whether or not his is actually indoctrinated.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 4 months ago by  findorlol.
  • #1146

    Logical Premise
    Keymaster

    Cerberus doesn’t have the pull or reach to manipulate the Judgement Cadre.

    Hint #1: A known player of the game, but not one of the ones you’d expect.

    Hint #2: I’ve already indicated the one group that has disproportionate ability to affect what the Commissariat bases its data on.

    Purge the alien. Kill the heretic. Suffer not the witch to live.

  • #1147

    NPC
    Participant

    Son of a bitch, looks like the AIS has some plans. I wonder if they aren’t under the thumb of the Manswells as completely as I used to think.

    The oldest jobs that could be consider true professions are prostitutes, mercenaries, and brewers in that order. Money, sex, war, and drugs. I guess that tells you all you need to know about the human race. I don't know if I should be sad about that or scream HUMANITY FUCK YEAH!

    Bitch, I'm wearing kinky boots and leather. Do you really think your going to win this fight?

    • #1149

      Logical Premise
      Keymaster

      Son of a bitch, looks like the AIS has some plans. I wonder if they aren’t under the thumb of the Manswells as completely as I used to think.

      *ding ding ding ding ding*

      Purge the alien. Kill the heretic. Suffer not the witch to live.

  • #1148

    ArielFetters
    Participant

    *Loses tinfoil hat*

    I knew it! It’s the little blue aliens and they’re after our brainnnssssss

    More on topic, it culd be one of several things.

    1) Reapers, looking for better way to turn humans into agents able to do more subtle work as opposed to simple foot soldiers
    2) The STG, same general reasons and because Science!
    3) The Thirty or a faction thereof, same general idea aimed towards turning humanity into a servant race
    4) Cthulu.

  • #1202

    ArielFetters
    Participant

    I’m not gonna do a super in depth review but I will say…

    It was great to see the Alliance pulling everyone together for an ‘Oh shit, if Shepard’s alive we are SO screwed’ moment, and that Ash DIDN’T take the chance to stab her in the back (Like in the game, which made no sense at all). It was also good to see a member of Neutron there backing Shepard and feeling like crap for having once not backed her previously. The fact both he and Ash were going ‘Dude, if she is alive you do NOT wanna piss her off. Seriously. Don’t do it.’ was a nice touch too.

    The stuff with Athyta and Tela was great too, and really showed how burned out they are as well as Tela realizing if Shepard finds out she was involved with Liara’s and her’s deaths, well, the word ‘fucked’ doesn’t even come close.

    Great background chapter that sets up people’s motivations, makes clear who the villains are, who the unwilling draftees are, and who might prove to be a hero.

  • #1230

    ArielFetters
    Participant

    Again, and quick review 🙂

    Great chapter. Lots of groundwork being laid out without being boring (Wish I could manage that myself lol) and some awesome ‘oh shit ‘dis gon be good!’ moments.

    The Quote from Pressley was ominous, but in a good way. It makes me wonder however if he’s talking about Shep when she’d fighting, or if he means 100% of the time. Because if it’s 100% then some ‘future’ stuff you’ve written doesn’t make much sense since Shep seems fine 2 centuries in the future.

    The parts with Tetrimus getting nervous about facing Liara and Telnaya was also ominous in a good way. It tells us how completely dangerous they are now without going into too much detail. Again, I totally wish I could manage that.

    There were a few small spelling mistakes, but nothing major.

    Overall, the ‘mood’ of this section was kind of like watching 10 clowns with guns and anger issues scrambling to get into a VW bug while someone poured gasoline on it. Totally looking forward to the whoosh-boom 🙂

  • #1231

    mrosera
    Moderator

    I liked the chapter too. It’s a bit more of getting people where they need to be before the big showdown, detailing who will be present.

    You know things will get messy when even Tetrimus of all people is feeling uneasy.

    Other thing that jumps out the Vigil section, and the details of the large plan he has.

    Question for H.V. – What’s the difference in composition between a broker kill team and heavy combat team?

  • #1232

    Himura
    Participant

    A really good chapter. I enjoyed it greatly and Vigil rocked with his musings about his creators and the overall plans he had been tasked with.

    I think Shepard lost some of her steam and the burial showed that nicely. Her conversation with Pressly was a bit short but the following discussion with Trudy did a lot to let us see how Sara was dealing with everything.

    I think this fic needs more Petrovsky?

    BTW: how ‘badass’ is he actually?

  • #1233

    Logical Premise
    Keymaster

    Petrovsky?

    He’s a better general than von Grath is, and he’s a nightmare in a heavy fighter.

    In personal combat he’s not that much. He wasn’t ever an N-series marine, started out as a naval officer and only did a two year tour of duty as an A-rate for his combat TAB.

    Purge the alien. Kill the heretic. Suffer not the witch to live.

  • #1309

    ArielFetters
    Participant

    Good final setup chapter getting the last pieces into place for shit to hit the fan plot.

    That initial quote from Ahern was both awesome and ominous. Awesome in that Shepard actually made him proud. Ominous because when Illium blows the fuck up happens, shit goes totally wrong it’s enough to shift him from proud to homicidal. Combined with Pressley’s quite about Shepard becoming the Butcher, fuck all of us we’re dead things should be pretty damn apocalyptic interesting.

    The bit where Garrus is doubting Shepard worked, but didn’t quite work well for me. He and Shepard are open and honest enough he’d go ask if he had any concerns. That said, Melenis’s commentary about what a totally fucked up place Shepard has to be in mentally and emotionally worked really well. I was happy to see her finally get her man, and I’m looking forward to what happens when Garrus’s girlfriend meets his wife. Personally I think they’d form a group. Both women love Garrus, garrus loves both of them. Telnaya is his wife sure, but Melenis put him back together and kept him from falling a part for years. If not for her Garrus would be in a recycling bin somewhere. Toss in the fact that Asari don’t seem quite as posessive as other species, and I could totally see Garrus having two wives. After all all three of them have been through, once the dust settles, yeah. Bridal quite for three.

    Shepard’s briefing for the unit worked great, and it gave people a pointer at how much she’s changed. She’s looking at things from a commander’s point of view, not a soldier’s. That’s a huge leap for her, and people would notice that fast I’d think. The bit where she says they’ll kill the sisters of vengeance if they’re too far gone was pure Shepard however, and will come back to bite her hard when she finds out who they are.

    Athyta and the Black Blades was great, and the fact the Black Blades see Tela as a rookie gives us a great idea of how badass they are without giving us specifics. I wish I could do the same but I just don’t have the knack yet. Also, the mere fact Athyta has some of the deadliest Asari killers in history on speed dial, and that they call her Mama Fish (Great nickname) also points to how badass Athyta is since in her fight with Benezia she really didn’t get much time to shine.

    That last bit with Thax I could’ve done without. You already have a couple dozen fuses lit. Adding another just seems superfluous. If Shepard runs into him after she learns Liara’s alive, well, the words ‘Apocalyptically pissed off Biotic goddess’ come to mind. Sure he’s tough, but Shepard took out Okeer in single combat when she wasn’t even in butcher mode. Toss in butcher mode and he’d be turtle sausage in about the time it takes Mordin to blink.

    Overall I loved this chapter, other than the bit at the end I think could’ve been skipped. Good backgrouns setup, lot of little details and foreshadowing, ramping up the ominous factor to 20 on a ten-scale without going overboard on the exposition. (I seriously wich I could do that half as well as you do lol)

    Looking forward Climbing the goddamn walls to reading the next chapter post that shit before my brain melts soon.

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