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Starlight Aurate

Just a fallen star
The ocean smells like it does at home, though, and sounds like it, and the breeze keeps the heat down to something liveable.
Mmmm ocean very much smells like home to me ^_^

Pyrite Town! You know that name. It's full of gangsters and robbers and shootouts and cowboys. If anyone's left from Cipher, you bet that's where to find them. And shadow pokémon! You're going to meet shadow pokémon!
lol I love how excited he is to see something so dangerous and morbid.

But Mewtwo simply flicks the ball over to you with a spike of psychic force and lets himself be recalled. You look down at the master ball's knobby purple top.
Wow. I see that Celebi really messed with Mewtwo's self-esteem. His motivation and typical self-righteous fury is gone.

... old threadbare blankets and food wrappers and what you recognize with a fascinated shiver as a needle shoved up in one corner.
Maybe it's just me or the way I'm reading it, but I'm a bit confused. A needle shoved up in one corner of the house? And like a sewing needle or a syringe?

Side note, I really like how you describe Pyrite Town as a whole, especially the house that Hypno and the protagonist enter into. You really nail the creepy, not-quite-right atmosphere.

"Well," Hypno says slowly. "Actually, we were wondering if you wanted us to show you around Pyrite for a bit. Just, ah, to get to know the place."

Mewtwo's too confused to even be annoyed by that. You wanted to give us a tour?
Mmmm this is feeling more and more like a trap to me.

Heracross lets out a whoop of pleasure and takes to the air for a brief, buzzing flight.
I always forget that Heracross--and probs most bug Pokemon, tbh--can fly. I know it's based off a beetle but flight isn't what I immediately associate beetles with, heh.

"Always happy to have guests!" the bug says, raising her soda in a phantom toast.
How on earth does that Heracross still have some of her pop left? Was she not able to finish a can in one day? She was certainly sipping it obnoxiously an awful lot earlier.

*Precisely. Now, I think that's all. We should be going."
Any reason for the asterisk at the beginning? And that this is in quotations instead of italics?

Not too much else to say on this chapter. It overall felt quiet and rather calm. I liked it, and the Three Musketeers are easy to warm up to :) I wonder what Mewtwo's "leads" are, and where it'll all go from this. Excited to find out, and good luck! :)
 

Negrek

Lost but Seeking
Hey @Starlight Aurate! Thanks a lot for reviewing this chapter. It is a pretty quiet one, but I'm glad you liked the Three Musketeers. They've been a lot of fun to write so far, and I'm excited to get to explore them more in future chapters.

lol I love how excited he is to see something so dangerous and morbid.
Still having trouble separating TV from real life, heh. It's been a disillusioning journey so far, but the child is still always hoping to have an adventure like the ones it sees in movies and has a false sense of invincibility. Orre might be dangerous for someone else, but of course it's special and doesn't have to worry about things that cause trouble for ordinary people...

Wow. I see that Celebi really messed with Mewtwo's self-esteem. His motivation and typical self-righteous fury is gone.
He's definitely behaving differently. The child doesn't trust his change of heart, though.

Maybe it's just me or the way I'm reading it, but I'm a bit confused. A needle shoved up in one corner of the house? And like a sewing needle or a syringe?
Syringe

Side note, I really like how you describe Pyrite Town as a whole, especially the house that Hypno and the protagonist enter into. You really nail the creepy, not-quite-right atmosphere.
Thanks! I really wanted to try and capture the atmosphere of Pyrite from the Orre games. It's a really iconic place, imo, and so different from most towns in the pokémon world. I'm glad you think I pulled it off!

Mmmm this is feeling more and more like a trap to me.
Haha, awww, no, they're really just excited to show the town off to Mewtwo. They would probably be pretty enthusiastic just about hanging out and watching paint dry with Mewtwo. Unfortunately for them they haven't yet gotten a taste of Mewtwo's real personality; they just know him by reputation.

I always forget that Heracross--and probs most bug Pokemon, tbh--can fly. I know it's based off a beetle but flight isn't what I immediately associate beetles with, heh.
It's funny, Heracross is one of the few terrestrial bug-types that I tend to associate with flight, partially because of its animations in the Orre games! It walks when it's moving in to attack an opponent, but when it gets knocked back by an attack it always picks itself up and flies back to its spot.

How on earth does that Heracross still have some of her pop left? Was she not able to finish a can in one day? She was certainly sipping it obnoxiously an awful lot earlier.
Haha, Heracross normally takes pretty small sips. It's more like a constant small intake than drinking with the intent of finishing off the can. She definitely does go through multiple in a day. I could probably stand to tone down references to her drinkng in this chapter, though.

Any reason for the asterisk at the beginning? And that this is in quotations instead of italics?
It's because I forget to do Mewtwo's dialogue right sometimes, haha. The asterisks indicate that the line should be italic, but here I messed up and ended with a quotation mark instead of another asterisk, so nothing got italicized. Easy fix, thanks for pointing it out!

Thanks again for the review! I think you said a lot for a fairly quiet chapter, heh. A bit of time to relax before the drama that's sure to come, heh.

Meanwhile, what I've been working on the most recently is the extra I think I mentioned a couple of times earlier in the thread. It's turning out quite a bit longer than I want, so I'm hoping I can wrestle it down a bit in size, but one way or another I think it should be a fun companion to the main story. This year I really want to work hard at releasing at least one piece of Salvage content per month, so I'm hoping to have that extra out by the end of January. Meanwhile I've been doing a lot of rereading and revising of old chapters recently and working on a pretty substantial restructure of part of the story, and I'm hoping to be able to bring out a new chapter in February and pick up the pace a little from there. We'll see!
 

Chibi Pika

Stay positive
So! This is something of an unusual post! @Marika_CZ came up with the idea to put together an e-card thanking you for your contributions to the forum, and asked me for help putting it together. I was originally going to post it in the MMM thread, but it took too long to put together and it would feel a bit weird to bump the thread now. As for the reason why it had to be posted somewhere as opposed to private messaging? Well, several of the contributors requested that it be posted publicly, so this was the best option we could think of. :p

Anyway, the card can be viewed here. Enjoy!
 

unrepentantAuthor

A cat who writes stories
Hi there, here's my review for chapter 2. Sorry for the delay — both in the sense that you were expecting this yesterday, and in that it's been literally a couple years since I read chapter one. I glanced at chapter one for a quick refresher, but being pressed for time I moved straight on. Fortunately, following chapter 2 was an easier experience generally than I recall was the case with chapter 1, regardless of said time gap!

So, my overwhelming impression coming out of this chapter is that we have a villain protagonist on our hands. It's not that chapter 1 didn't give the impression that the protag had a somewhat unnerving morality. Rather, chapter 1 gave the impression of being a prologue, an incident of significance, but not necessarily the direct precursor to the rest of the narrative. Chapter 2 follows on almost immediately, and it finally kicked in that, yes, our protag is pretty terrifying. Not so much for their powers, although those seem considerable, but for their imperious and obsessive behaviour and apparent lack of empathy. People who can't be reasoned with like this are just scary all on their own, let alone when they can beat the **** out of a powerful pokémon.

I seem to remember reading an extra about absol morality out of irresistible curiosity. This would have been back in 2018. It clearly stuck with me hard, as the comments from the protag about not interfering brought to mind the absol mindset about fated events at once. I don't know for sure that I would have had the same kind of reaction had I not read that extra, but either way, I found it disturbing that the child should think like that.

In terms of prose, I don't have anything to criticise. The peculiar person, tense and POV may be strange to read, but they're well handled, and I didn't notice any technical or stylistic problems.

In terms of narrative, I find myself intrigued by the pact the protag mentions, and by the kind of creature they must be. There were small details that stood out to me, such as Rats' joke about the pokéball, the mention of the protag taking Nick's soul, and Titan's moment of realisation that the protag can understand his utterances. These sort of subtle moments that say much without spelling everything out are some of my favourite things about a good piece of writing, and I'm pleased to expect more prose like this for the rest of the fic.

See you next chapter!
 
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