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Author Topic: Mender's Tale  (Read 5506 times)

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rhombus

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Re: Mender's Tale
« Reply #80 on: June 11, 2019, 04:43:15 PM »
Thanks for the reviews, everyone!

Anagnos: Indeed, the valley is having the classic argument between isolationism and interventionism. This debate, already complicated in our time due to multiple instances in history where either option would have been preferable to the other, is further complicated by the role of the pack. They are both heroes for their past actions and accomplices to the killers of some of the valley's own. In the end the valley's decision of neutrality is probably better than some of the other options.

As for the slower pace that was noticed by me as well. Though this chapter and the last one were slower-paced, I do hope that everyone enjoys the payoff for this deliberate slow development in the chapters to come. With so many factions and character arcs to arrange in an organic way, a slower pace from time to time is the price that is often paid.

Thank you for your recent reviews and kind words. (: I hope that you enjoy the latest installment.

Sovereign: You are quite right in your suspicions about the last chapter being the calm before the storm. Although this new chapter did not really have much action in terms of battles and such, I think it is kind of obvious that the new events here will directly lead to the unleashing of new hostilities. The events in the valley during the last chapter is kind of an echo of what happened here, though with an opposite effect. The valley and the fastbiters, due to their differing mindsets and ways of life, were almost equally unanimous for opposite decisions.

I am also pleased that you liked the Datum-Orchid conversation. I had intended for Datum to be a bit different than his father in terms of his manner of preventing cultural contamination. Despite the younger rainbowface being a bit more loose with what he reveals through his words, he is actually a bit more strict in keeping some of their important secrets confidential. Only time will tell, however, as the generations go on if the rainbowface line will be able to prevent future instances of "cultural contamination". That being said, new cultural contamination will not be a thing in this story. So you don't need to worry about Datum showing people how to make bows and arrows or anything like that. :p

Thank you for the kind words and the in-depth review. (: I hope that you enjoy the final act as it slowly develops over the months and (considering the slow update schedule) years to come.


Go ahead and check out my fanfictions, The Seven Hunters, Songs of the Hunters, and Mender's Tale
Mender's Tale.

rhombus

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Re: Mender's Tale
« Reply #81 on: June 11, 2019, 04:45:53 PM »
Chapter 29: The New Alliance

The meeting of the fastbiters enters full swing as old allies meet in the shadow of the looming war. Though some have already experienced the terrors of battle, for others the war provides opportunities for earning a pack name and reputation.  All the while the packs must confront what this war may do to them and their leaders.


Go ahead and check out my fanfictions, The Seven Hunters, Songs of the Hunters, and Mender's Tale
Mender's Tale.

Anagnos

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Re: Mender's Tale
« Reply #82 on: June 12, 2019, 03:32:33 AM »
I’d say that this chapter would be very fitting to the phrase, the calm before the storm. We witness the meeting between the fastbiter packs, their plan to engage Wrok and get some payback while at it for all the horrible things done to them. Personally, what I liked the most about this chapter was the gathering of different fastbiter packs as we have yet to see something quite like this. It was rather interesting to explore all the different dynamics of these packs in this way. I’d imagine that even if a majority (if not even all of them) highly respect Seeker and even maybe fear him little for the strict reputation he and his pack have achieved not only with Red Claw and Calin’s demises and the circumstances that led to those particular deaths, but with their recent actions as well over the years. I’m certainly not saying that they cannot be hospitable when the situation calls for such action. We have to remember that in a world like this you have to always be on your guard. Even when in presence of supposed allies.

Things in the Mysterious Beyond are seemingly escalating into a more of a critical direction every day and I doubt that Wrok will be satisfied with what he has already claimed as his own. Then of course we have Questor too, while he is not the biggest threat (at least yet) I do not see him staying on the sidelines for long anymore. I belive that the previous chapter gave clear implications that whatever he is planning currently will no doubt cause more pain and misery to everyone who have chosen to join this fight. I could see that the fastbiters and hidden runners would make a temporary alliance with each other to fight their common foe. And Wrok would more than likely create even more likely enemies with his assaults against others.

The approaching battle will determine who lives and who dies. Naturally, not everyone is going to survive the coming ordeal, so it only reinforces that everyone must do their very best in order to survive and fight another day. One battle isn’t going to mean the end of the, dare I say, war. But the first battle will set the groundwork for the future engagements.

This was a very interesting chapter indeed. As I have said previously, good things are worth waiting for and I believe I am not the only one when I say that no matter how long it might take for the next chapter to be finished, the outcome will no doubt be outstanding. I hope this review actually made sense, because I like to go in-depth with my input as much as I possibly can. I will be looking forward for the following chapters very much so. Once again, nicely done! :)

Sovereign

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Re: Mender's Tale
« Reply #83 on: June 13, 2019, 03:16:28 PM »
Yep, it’s quite clear this story has moved into its next phase as the time for confrontation is quickly approaching. I was rather taken aback by the swift jump into this part as I hadn’t expected things to escalate this quickly even if it shouldn’t have been surprising after the latest events. This chapter laid a quite nice tone for what is to come even if it itself was quite heavy on dialogue and it mostly set the stage for what’s to come which isn’t a bad idea for the first chapter of an act.

In many ways, we saw many of the former plotlines come together here and it’s quite nice to see the characters finally reunite with each other before those momentous events. The dialogue itself worked very nicely here and it’s clear that the characters are ready to united behind one cause. Even then, I couldn’t help but smile a little at the thought of Littlefoot acting as the leader of united sharptooth packs. Now there’s a sight we don’t see every day. And it seems that some of his new followers realize the absurdity of it as well by reminding each other of his old name. :p

It was great to see the characters prepare for the inevitable in their own ways and the calm before the storm, as Anagnos put it, hangs heavily upon our protagonists. I just hope all of them, especially Littlefoot, are up to the challenge as there will be many decisive events in the sight soon enough. I must say that this chapter felt a bit long for the relatively few events in it but it’s of course clear that there is need for a proper buildup for the next installments.

Even then, I’m sure there will be many surprises on the way as it’s highly doubtful that there will be one or two battles and that’s that. I’ll look forward to seeing what will happen after those skirmishes as it’s more than clear Wrok and Questor won’t be helpless before this assault. Overall, this was a good opening for the new act. :smile



rhombus

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Re: Mender's Tale
« Reply #84 on: August 06, 2019, 08:01:17 PM »
@Anagnos  You are quite right about your thoughts on the last chapter. Though the storm might not have struck yet in the form of a battle, the rainbowfaces have now been ambushed and skirmishes are breaking out at the site of the coming battle. All the while each faction is pursuing its own interests without a full appreciation of the larger picture. Thus we are left with a situation where the path to hell is paved in good intentions. Rest assured that the action will continue in the next chapter. (:

@Sovereign Thank you for the detailed review as always. I have already addressed some of what was said in Anagnos's review, but I will confirm that this act is going to be quite a bit more involved than a few battles. In fact it is looking like there might be another 16 or so chapters coming in this mammoth act. I just hope that it will not take us 3 years to finish it all. :p

As for the slowness of the previous chapter, that was partially by design. There are numerous side characters that needed to be named and characterized and the events of the previous chapter provided a convenient opportunity to do so. The general slow down also provided a nice opportunity to reset the pace going into the coming cataclysm. The beginning elements of which are being presented at the end of this chapter.


Go ahead and check out my fanfictions, The Seven Hunters, Songs of the Hunters, and Mender's Tale
Mender's Tale.

rhombus

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Re: Mender's Tale
« Reply #85 on: August 06, 2019, 08:01:27 PM »
Chapter 30: Hidden Skirmishes

The storm clouds finally begin to crack with the deafening reports of thunder. As Seeker's makeshift army travels to distant lands, the hidden runners and the denizens of the Mysterious Beyond await with excitement and concern for the coming escalation in the bloody conflict. All the while, schemes are at work behind the scenes. Though such hidden skirmishes may yet be unseen they will have repercussions all the same.


Go ahead and check out my fanfictions, The Seven Hunters, Songs of the Hunters, and Mender's Tale
Mender's Tale.

Anagnos

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Re: Mender's Tale
« Reply #86 on: August 07, 2019, 11:23:53 AM »
You definitely weren’t lying when you said that this chapter would feature some of that sweet action that was missing from the previous chapters and it is quite nice to get into this kind of environment once again. In fact, I’d wager that is what this tale needs to become even greater. Now you could call me hungry for violence or such, but I generally enjoy those kind of stories better. Not saying that there’s anything wrong with one or two chapters of non-violence. That is actually a rather good idea to give the reader a bit of respite before diving deeper into the world of action and violence.

What can I say about this chapter? On one hand it seemed that the plot was moving pretty slowly forward, but on the other hand, we end the chapter like how you always seem to do. Cliffhanger. Now, I’ve got nothing against cliffhangers, as they make the story more interesting to read next time, in my opinion at least. But a continuous streak of them can sometimes hurt the story far more than give profit. Despite that, I think it worked perfectly here and I really don’t have any major complaints about it, so you don’t have to worry that it’s getting dull or something like that.

I can say one thing about Chronos and Logos’ new predicament, though. This outcome wasn’t exactly what I had in mind initially when Questor begun his schemes, but I guess this is just another lesson about to always expect the unexpected to happen at any given time. I don’t think their stay with Questor will be a kind one, as the hidden runner in question seems to be planning something very malicious that could potentially even hurt everyone in some way or another. If he knew just how important and smart the rainbowfaces really are, the consequences would be very catastrophic.

All in all, very decent chapter from you, and concerning about the review question, I would personally be okay with either option. Whatever works best for you. Love to see what you’ll come up next time! :PAli

Sovereign

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Re: Mender's Tale
« Reply #87 on: August 08, 2019, 03:08:59 PM »
There were some very interesting developments in this chapter. While the ending has obviously the most widespread implications, the previous scenes were highly interesting as well. All of the plotlines were advanced nicely and it’s also clearly there will be lots of actions in the chapters to come.

I’ve really liked Penol’s journey and her part here was quite intriguing too. The way you described the mating rituals was at the same time quite funny as well as illuminating on her current circumstances. It’s good to see that she’s having more acquittances within her new herd even if her situation seems very threatening even now. It’s also great to see her start thinking about her own life and which path she wants to take. Even if her current plans seems set in stone, it’s quite clear her deeds will be highly impactful in the not so distant future.

Petrie and Ignis’ conversation signaled that things will get serious soon. It seems like the flyer surprised her with his news of a swift assault upon Wrok even if the course of action for both of them was clear for a long time. Even then, a major battle is upon both of them, at least if the last scene doesn’t change everything. At the same time, it looks like things are turning into ever more dangerous direction in the Valley as well.

About the ending, the thought of the rainbowfaces serving Questor is a terrible one and it’s almost clear that this will change everything in the grand scheme of things. Even if the rainbowfaces manage to avoid revealing everything to him, it’s clear they’ll provide him with some new techniques or strategies that will give him the decisive advantage in any confrontation. I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if he made his move while Wrok and his enemies are fighting each other…

As I said, this seems like a real gamechanger. Even Wrok may soon find that he stands no chance against his elusive rival and even if it might be a stretch to suspect that he’s ally with the Pack and their allies, it’s likely that Questor will be at least as threatening a villain as he is. Nice job with this chapter as always! :DD



rhombus

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Re: Mender's Tale
« Reply #88 on: October 13, 2019, 02:38:13 AM »
@Anagnos  I do indeed agree with the need for the action to return to this story. Though it is the nature of this story to be a slow build we are certainly in the thick of the action now. I can also certainly see the point about not overdoing cliffhangers, though I do have a bit of an addiction to them as you have probably noticed. :p This current chapter ends on a similar organization of tone as is my custom (to end on a moment of tension and uncertainty) though in the context of a situation that is known. Though the question of what the pack (and Mender's healers) will decide to do now will be of some importance. Dodger has just now witnessed his own side inadvertently perform an atrocity that is reminiscent of what his allied hidden runners went through in act 1. Now everyone will have to come to terms with what has happened as they prepare for further bloodshed on the horizon.

@Sovereign  I am glad that you enjoyed the initial Penol scene and did not see it as superfluous. In many ways that scene sets the stage in presenting her mindset going forward as she tries to determine her place in this confusing and treacherous situation. At the same time as she is wading into the pool of grey morality, both Ignis and Spotter are practically swimming in it. Which has led to the situation at the end of this current chapter and the disturbing implications of having things come full circle with the destruction of a (admittedly smaller) hidden runner pack as a mirror image to how Verant got into this war in the first place. I look forward to your thoughts on the new developments. :)

Oh, and @LBTlover247 and @Sovereign I will read and review your new chapters tomorrow. I have been incredibly busy with work and have just now been able to catch up on my own writing.  (So now is the cue for someone to post more chapters of their stories on Monday so that I can fall behind again  :lol )
« Last Edit: October 13, 2019, 02:43:37 AM by rhombus »


Go ahead and check out my fanfictions, The Seven Hunters, Songs of the Hunters, and Mender's Tale
Mender's Tale.

rhombus

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Re: Mender's Tale
« Reply #89 on: October 13, 2019, 02:40:30 AM »
Chapter 31: Symmetries

As the hidden runner conflict escalates within hidden runner territory, the fastbiter super-pack finally begins its assault on their hated enemy.  However in war not everything is as it seems, and sometimes the echoes of the past can scream louder than the shouts of the present.


Go ahead and check out my fanfictions, The Seven Hunters, Songs of the Hunters, and Mender's Tale
Mender's Tale.

Anagnos

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Re: Mender's Tale
« Reply #90 on: October 13, 2019, 03:42:23 AM »
This was in many ways a rather emotional chapter, where the consequences of actions are presented in a very clear light. The implications of different packs in the war to come, although proven to be somewhat justified, have caused innocents to be drawn into it as well. It is quite clear that this uncertain path they must face now will lead to many calamitous circumstances to take place rather soon, judging by the tone of the most recent chapter.

The conversation between Staza and Pearl was a rather unexpected event, that despite the feeling of uncertainty managed to create a phenomenal and impactful sequence. Although, these two have barely spoken to each other over the course of the story, it was very intriguing to see how each of them reacted to the sudden and unexpected eventuality that was bound to happen at some point. Their views on the upcoming battle and emotions put into it really spoke volumes about their inner feelings on the matter, with the former disliking the fact that her mate is always taking unnecessary risks. Albeit that might be the right call in this scenario, the conclusion might be another thing entirely.

One can understand Staza’s frustrations about Verant leaving with the super-pack to confront Wrok and his forces, but in a war these things usually cannot be helped. Many have had to leave their families to protect them from calamities, and many do not ever return. Therefore, Staza’s anxiety is completely justified and very much understandable. However, one can also understand Verant’s need to carry out an important task in order to ensure a better future for him and his family in the hellish world they live in. It can also be interpreted as Verant’s way of returning the favor for what Seeker and his pack did for them in the past, which I very much sympathize with.

The dynamic among the super-back is certainly quite humorous at times, but what can you expect from bunch of children that have not seen a real battle up until this point? It is entirely conceivable that they would feel not only anxious, but a little bit of dread as their lives have been changed for conclusively with the recent developments. Albeit, many of them might be eager to learn new things, undoubtedly many of them will not return from the battle, as was hinted in the previous chapters. The pack doesn’t always appear to get along that well either, but that is abundantly clear as they have not spent that much time together yet, therefore not being comfortable around with each other quite yet. It will be an interesting development to follow for sure. Verant’s approach to the matter of providing the young ones with much needed support and guidance was what one might expect from such fastbiter as he. Albeit, some of their antics unwittingly cause some mild annoyance to rise over their inexperience.

I must confess that the ending part took me completely by surprise, as I was under the impression someone from their past would suddenly appear (Prowler), as the summary of the chapter hinted something like that would take place, the factuality is much more depressing and dismal than initially expected. All the while throughout the chapter, we are given brief hints about their adversary and their possible intentions. But all of that is promptly crushed when they figure out exactly whom they had killed on that very day; a pack of innocent hidden runners. To make matters worse, these hidden runners had eggs on the way, and without their guardians to provide protection and care, I do not see any other option other than putting them out of their misery before they are even born, as the pack really doesn’t have another option at this point. This was a nice chapter as always that presented very interesting plot developments and I look forward to how the plot develops from here. :)

Sovereign

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Re: Mender's Tale
« Reply #91 on: November 05, 2019, 02:54:23 PM »
My apologies for the extremely delayed review but a lot has been happening lately. As for the chapter, it was a pretty a pretty solid one that moved the story forward. While it was rather slow initially, it did managed to create new drama and emotion as well and it was a very pleasant read overall. The ending was a surprise certainly and it was also a harrowing conclusion to this installment. I always love these kinds of reminders that even our heroes can do terrible things even if they didn’t mean it.

I quite the first scenes of this chapter as they brought the tension a bit downwards from the extremely warlike last installments and showed that even now, the characters still care most about their companions and children, rather than about this struggle. Staza and Pearl’s conversation certainly was a well-written one and one that underlined their distant but warm relationship.

As for the latter parts, it’s of course true that the Pack simply cannot take any risks with strangers and in that way, Verant’s hunt is a justified one. Even in the middle of what would become a terrible tragedy, it was a good idea to put some humor into the mix as it made the plot move forward more smoothly and it made the tale feel more nuanced as such scenes often do. When it comes to the ending, yeah, it was a dark one. The hunt was clearly a mistake and as a consequence, Verant and the others killed a bunch of innocents and as Anagnos pointed out, they’ll most likely have to do the same to the eggs.

Even if this chapter didn’t really advance many plotlines, it did make us see another side of some of our heroes: that they can be just as bad as Wrok or Questor if the circumstances are right and that’s a message I really approve of. Overall, this was a rather short but interesting installment that provided us with more insight about our characters. I hope that I and Anagnos are wrong about what’s to follow but this chapter was a very good one.