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So Close (Ace Attorney, one-shot)

Discussion in 'Non-Pokémon Stories' started by diamondpearl876, Dec 11, 2017.

  1. diamondpearl876

    diamondpearl876 → follow your fire.

    This is a side project I've worked on very late at night over the last few weeks. :p I'd been wanting to write Ace Attorney for a while, so I figured why not? Also, there's Klavier/Apollo shipping. I don't think I've written anything shipping-focused in a long time, either.

    This is basically a fanfic of a fanfic of a movie. “Dirty Sympathy” by ideny is a “Strangers on a Train” version of AA4, so this too is an AU. Plot related comments are references to said fic.

    WARNING for mentions of domestic violence, plus some swearing.

    S • O
    C • L • O • S • E​

    The car stops, and in that moment you feel like you might very well die. You’re on the run, goddamn it, you don’t have time for this, to be on the run you have to be moving. But you’re not moving, so you’re going to get caught and all that’ll be left for you is one last, awful surge of breath, then nothing…

    It takes a few more agonizingly slow moments for the car to press on and for you to relax against the passenger seat once more. You slouch and rest your knees up on the dashboard, the best sleeping position you can manage in an unfavorably cramped place like this. You wonder for a moment if it’s worth mentioning anything to your driver because not only is he your driver, he’s your lover and your savior and all sorts of other wondrous things, too.

    Yes, you decide, he’d probably appreciate hearing about you being upset instead of learning you bottled it up later. Again.

    So you mumble something quick to Apollo Justice about how you can’t wait to pass the border out of California, but he just clenches his fist around the steering wheel so tight you can see with the help of the high-mast lighting above how the veins in his knuckles bulge. A growl forms at the back of his throat, and you promptly turn your head away to end the conversation before it begins.

    You should’ve pretended you’d just been jolted awake by the car coming to a sudden stop instead of another nightmare. The former, of course, wouldn’t have been any consolation to the man giving his all to get you somewhere safe, but still. He’s trying, and that’s more than anyone else could ever say. What would your fans think of you, Klavier Gavin, if they knew you could be scared out of your wits so easily? They wouldn’t question why. They’d immediately resolve to quit buying your band’s merchandise and tickets to concerts. Not everyone is as understanding as the man beside you.

    You sigh. At this angle, the most you can see are the silhouettes of birds against the darkened sky as they perch motionlessly on the tops of telephone poles. The occasional cloud blots out the light cresting the edges of the sun as it begins to reveal itself and announce a new day.

    And on one hand, for you that’s a kind of reassurance, because you’re alive when one night not long ago you suspected that that wouldn’t be the case anymore. That night at the concert—your last performance with the Gavinners, the last straw for Daryan Crescend—you had little choice but to accept that somewhere along the line you screwed up bad and in order to fix things you’d have to screw up even worse. It would’ve been one hell of a show to see Klavier Gavin, renowned singer and guitarist, die at the hands of one of his own stage props. Whoever’s idea it was to literally put you in chains just to emphasize the whole cop theme the band had going on, well, fuck ‘em. Fuck ’em all.

    Your ex-lover, since shot dead at the hands of your new lover, still managed to accomplish what he always wanted to do. He wanted to leave his mark. The proof’s hidden, but it’s there. Daryan really never was that bright, and in hindsight, that may be the only reason you’re alive today.

    It’s nauseating, how you once adored the shocked look on his face when something obvious to others finally clicked in his head. And if you’re being honest, you still give Daryan credit sometimes, when your mind betrays you and you remember how he’d lie in bed next to you for hours, just letting you play with his hair after he’d showered and it wasn’t bogged down with gel. The passion in his voice as he rambled on about wild cop stories captivated you. It never occurred to you then that your life with him would eventually resemble a neurotic script written for those lame but popular crime shows.

    You slide lower into the leather passenger seat of your Cadillac, hoping that if you try hard enough, you’ll fold in on yourself like some complicated origami puzzle no one will ever care enough to unfold. You’d be totally okay with disappearing, never to be found again.

    Unsurprisingly, no such thing happens.

    The whishing of the road passing you by drones on. The car shakes whenever you pass over a pothole, each time jolting you into feeling alert all over again. You wish you were able to keep yourself from dozing off, but the nightmares, they’ve just been too much lately. You’d insist on driving if you thought you could handle it. After all the sacrifices Apollo Justice has made for you, it’d only be fair to drive his ass out of town and toward somewhere safe. Instead, all you can do is sit there in the near silence, suspended in a jaded stupor.

    Occasionally you catch yourself fingering your ear, the one still not healed from when Daryan ripped your silver stud clean off and let you know you’d be growing your hair out again, no questions asked. An image you’d been dead set on evicting from your memory threatens to surge to the surface, and your breath hitches when a sudden, dull pain courses through your foot. You try not to tip off Apollo, try not to add to his worries, because it’s okay, really. You have a mutilated toe thanks to your ex-lover. That shit happens sometimes. You would’ve gone to a doctor for it ages ago, but you didn’t know how to explain the incident away without attracting suspicion, so here you are, dealing with the repercussions of neglect brought on by fear.

    You turn your head to the side, chancing a glance at Apollo as the two of you continue on toward god knows where. Seeing him makes you smile, of course it does, because he’s the only one in the world who has any clue how to. Which is funny, kind of. Half the time he doesn’t even have to try. How does that work?

    Still. You do have to admit right now, how downright eerie Apollo’s determined stare would look to anyone else out of context. His eyes don’t even seem to blink. To you it just means he won’t abandon you, won’t hurt you on purpose like everyone else in your life, but you pity anyone who would dare get in his way. You pity yourself most of all, knowing full well that you don’t deserve him and he doesn’t deserve the hell you’re unwittingly putting him through. It’s ironic and pathetic, how the sacrifices he made for you brought on a whole slew of issues for himself that no lawyer would be able to argue against in the court of law.

    Now, every day from here on out will be different. With no home to return to (safely, that is) and no real belongings to your name aside from the used first-aid kits you’ve collected and stashed away at the back of your Cadillac’s glove compartment, it’s all free reign from here. It’s not what you expected—Daryan hardly believed in freedom, despite his profession—but it’ll have to do.

    Maybe you jumped the gun. Maybe you're gonna regret it one, five, ten years from now, because maybe, just maybe, all you had to do was bare your teeth at your slick shark of a boyfriend one more time to break free of him for good without having to run.

    Then again, maybe not. You had spent years trying to break him before he broke you. Yet every time you move you swear you hear your knees creak, loud as a gunshot, no matter how deliberate your movements are, no matter how diligent you are about trying to hide the fact that you’re reduced to a quivering mannequin, incapable of functioning.

    When the car’s stopped again on the shoulder of the highway, it's five o'clock in the morning and the sun's deciding to show itself, to share its light with you and Apollo. The light is red, goddamn it, such an impossible shade of red that reminds you too much of blood. You shield your eyes, resort to closing them, but the light quickly grows too bright for you to simply ignore it. A wave of apprehension washes over you, and you accept then and there that you failed in your goal to not be broken by Daryan or anyone else long ago. The proof? You should be celebrating your escape, but you're not. You’re dwelling on it more than you ever have before, allowing the weight of it to threaten to snap you in two.

    Next to you, Apollo sighs deeply. The prominent rise and fall of his chest comforts you, if only because it reminds you that he’s alive and breathing, together with you.

    “Klavier, I…”

    How earnest he sounds, how sweet and vehement, even when he’s shaking.

    You adore him so, so terribly.

    Apollo opens the car door. Motions for you to do the same. A quizzical look crosses your face, and you’re certain that he can sense your nervousness despite the soft smile you give him as you traipse to the hood of your Cadillac and lean against it. He wraps his arm around you and pulls you just close enough for your shoulders to touch.

    You wait for him to finish his sentence, maybe say your name again because you love it when he does, but he stays silent.

    “If you have anything you want to say, I’d like to hear it.” You pause, turning to him. “And I do mean anything, Apollo.”

    “Anything,” he repeats, sighing. He gazes straight ahead, frowning. “Yeah, but where would I start? I still haven’t figured out where things went wrong.”

    “I’ll apologize as many times as I have to for not pushing Kristoph to his doom during our vacation to the Alps.”


    The name rolls off your tongue, then sends a pang of guilt through you. You’d nearly forgotten about him in your tired reverie. Kristoph, your older brother who went beyond the law to get his way whenever possible. Kristoph, who took advantage of Apollo however he saw fit when they ran their own law firm together. Kristoph, who Apollo always argues was never as dangerous as Daryan but you never believed him because Apollo—sweet, dear and innocent Apollo—simply hadn’t pushed enough of Kristoph’s buttons to make him want to appear dangerous.

    “And I could apologize, too,” Apollo says, “for not realizing earlier what a scumbag Daryan is.”

    Apollo smiles, and you look away, suddenly self-conscious about your dyed black hair and fake colored contacts you’d adopted as part of the escape plan. Can he still see a resemblance between you and your brother? How is it that your presence never seems to be downright nauseating for him?

    You take a deep breath. “Well, we’re out now, aren’t we? Let’s just… make the most of it,” you say, except your voice falters and comes out more like a stutter by the end. Even you find it hard to have faith in your own words more often than not. You can’t expect Apollo to do the same.

    Still you hear Apollo say, “You’re right.” His hand slides down the small of your back before he moves away from you to open the driver side door. “Sunrises are nice and all, but we can relax and party all night or whatever else later. Maybe we’ll even drop by Rite Aid at some point for old time’s sake.”

    You blink, stupidly wondering for a moment if he’s actually serious. That night you bumped into each other in the painkiller aisle… It was a coincidence, no doubt. But it was also a crucial, decisive moment in both of your lives in which Apollo kissed you because he couldn’t think of a better way to let you know he understood your sadness very, very well.

    “Mm, I’d rather not. Surely you understand,” you say, grinning for good measure. He knows you’re faking it, so why you’re bothering with the charade, you don’t know. “How long ago did we cross into Arizona, by the way?”

    Apollo cocks his head, twisting the bracelet on his left arm as he speaks. “I don’t know exactly, but we’re not there anymore, either. We’re in—”

    You hold up a hand to stop him and shake your head. Fuck it. The charade is over. “Shows how much I’ve been paying attention, eh? No doubt you feel like you’ve been driving for an eternity now. I’m sorry.”

    “We’re far, far away, and we’re only getting farther. That’s what matters right now,” he says, shrugging. The conversation appears to be over as he opens the car door and leans inside, rummaging through the center console for something.

    A gust of wind picks up, and you hug yourself to keep your body from shivering and teeth from chattering. The highway’s deserted, but the morning traffic will pick up soon, so Apollo’s right. It’d be best to move on, even if none of this strikes you as real still. You’ve been going nowhere at full speed for so long now that the idea of finally having made it out alive seems absurd, much like a sick prank someone’s playing on you.

    You have to trust Apollo. And you do trust Apollo, honest. More than anyone you’ve ever met, and more than anyone you’ll ever meet—not least because if he breaks you, the pieces of you won’t have a chance of fitting back together again so it’s best to prolong the process for as long as possible if, you know, it has to happen.

    Your eyes now adjusted to the sunlight, you stare down the road before both of you. There’s some tire skid marks not far ahead, which you can’t say is the most promising sign. The mountain road soon dips downward and to the left, where clusters of trees block your view of anything else.

    Your gaze slowly makes its way back to where you are now. It’d be all too easy on this highway to go careening into a ditch where no one would find you two. Really, it would have been easier to not be rescued at all. To not know what it’s like to feel whole. To not wonder if he’ll rip your happiness out from underneath your feet.

    You flinch as you feel Apollo tap you on the arm with his pinky finger. When did he step away from the car again? In his hand he’s holding a white box. You recognize it instantly, but you’re skeptical of the gesture.

    “What happened to those chords of steel you’re always on about, now?” you ask, taking the first-aid kit from him. It feels lighter than you’d expect. That’s what happens when you actually use shit like this, you suppose. It’s not a guaranteed endless supply, hence your familiarity with almost every drug store in California.

    “You don’t have the most spacious car. Thought I’d make some room in there,” Apollo says, smiling sadly. He holds up his other hand, revealing two tubes of antiseptic cream, all obviously empty and squeezed until the last drop.

    You look down the mountain road again and can’t help but laugh. “Is this my chance to finally push Kristoph off the cliff, metaphorically speaking?”


    You laugh again. Laughing is something you thought you’d forgotten how to do until you met Apollo, so you don’t force yourself to stop, even if nothing about your plight is particularly funny, even if you’re worrying the man beside you in the process.

    And for a moment, it’s all right, standing there, just the two of you. For once, there’s no rush to keep moving forward. There’s no pressure to do anything but exist or be anyone besides yourself.

    You were so close to giving up, before Apollo. So close to going nowhere, and so close to accepting your dead end life. You’re still not sure what’s gonna happen from here, but you’re so close to finding out that you can’t bear the thought of missing it. Can’t bear the thought of constantly questioning him, doubting him, when he’s unlike anyone else you’ve ever known.

    You’ll trust him until you have a reason not to.
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2017
  2. Ambyssin

    Ambyssin Winter can't come soon enough

    Aaaaaaaaah an Ace Attorney thing. Must read!

    Full disclosure, though I love me some Ace Attorney I don't really pay any attention to the ships outside of what's canon in the games. I'm also not familiar with the context fic thingy either. So, some of the stuff may not properly get across to me.

    But I am familiar with case 4-3 (though AJ is the one I've gone the longest without playing) and think that, disinterest in shipping aside, the AU premise is pretty nifty. There are passing mentions of Daryan's characterization that rang some familiar bells. He definitely wasn't the sharpest knife in the drawer. And the opening cluster of paragraphs is interesting in its structure. I think it very effectively gets across that trapped, resigned acceptance feeling that tends to plague an abusive relationship. Maybe it's because the narration swings so freely from what seems like Klavier talking to himself to extremely vivid descriptions (like "complicated origami puzzle"). By contrast, the much shorter mentions of Apollo and Kristoph were very cut and dry. Straight to the point, so to speak. Arguably like Kristoph himself, one could say. ^^;

    It also felt like the actual conversation had a bit of a metaphorical connection to the fact that they were driving? Maybe I'm crazy? That's the first thing that came to mind, anyway. So, yeah, not my usual cup of tea, but it was an interesting characterization piece, that's for sure.
  3. diamondpearl876

    diamondpearl876 → follow your fire.

    Indeed, I tried to write it so no one had to be familiar with the fic in question, and it seems that that wasn't an issue, so hooray! I'd highly recommend reading the fic, even if you're not quite into the shipping. (I wasn't a fan until I read it, tbh.) There aren't that many fics I've read where I can say I stayed up all night binge reading from start to finish, but "Dirty Sympathy" is one of them.

    As for the contrast comments... Writing this was interesting in that I wrote literally none of the paragraphs in order. I also started with nothing in mind except "I want to write a short Klavier/Apollo Ace Attorney fic because I can" and this happened. I was definitely in a different state of mind on the nights I wrote the pre-dialogue parts - that is, I was emotionally stressed myself - so you pointing out the difference tells me a lot. The cut and dryness weren't intentional, but I struggled with them a lot more.

    Thanks for taking the time to read and comment on my little experiment piece here. :D
  4. ChloboShoka

    ChloboShoka Writer

    It's nice to see more ace attorney fics on here. I really like how it's set in the second person as it makes a refreshing change from the 1st and 3rd person fics. Really highlights Klavier's affection for Apollo even more. Interesting piece.
  5. Bay


    Hey, so I thought I would drop by and check this out! So, while I'm not big on Apollo/Klavier (I'm more indifferent towards that pairing), I like their interaction here. I take it the scenario is them running away from something they committed? Looks like I'll have to check out ideny's story to get more context there heh.

    I admit it's been a while since I played AA4 but Daryan abusing Klavier, that's a twist there I'm not sure how to feel oh boy. Kristoph, hm I wonder how he plays into all this, but again not sure if it's me needing more context. Overall, this is a neat piece here!
  6. diamondpearl876

    diamondpearl876 → follow your fire.

    Ace Attorney is probably the only other fandom I ever find myself going back to besides Pokemon, hehe. <3 Glad you liked it! :D Thanks for readin' and commentin'!

    Indeed, I'd recommend the fic! Basically ideny's plot is an AU based off of "Strangers on a Train," with the initial pairings being Kristoph/Apollo and Klavier/Daryan. Kristoph and Daryan are both abusive, and when Klavier and Apollo meet, the events of AA4 begin. The series of events are changed so that Klavier ends up killing Kristoph, and Apollo ends up killing Daryan. They go through a lot of loopholes to try to get each other off the hook, but end up having to run in the end once Phoenix catches on to things. I felt like writing part of the running away part since it was a tad glanced over in ideny's work IIRC. <3

    Thanks for reading and commenting!
  7. Negrek

    Negrek Lost but Seeking

    Aaaaa, this is really telling me I need to go and replay Apollo Justice, lol. I'm having a little trouble remembering what elements here actually happened in the game, and which are presumably coming from the AU you mentioned in your author's notes. Well, I'm pretty sure Klavier and Apollo aren't an item in the game, but besides that. :p

    I really like the opening paragraph here. The last sentence especially does a great job of creating the impression of terrified, racing thoughts, of somebody trying to organize their mind despite being in a panic. And I also really like the sense of physicality you have going on throughout the story; it's not just Klavier in his own head, thinking his thoughts in a detached way; he's also very much present in his body, uncomfortably crammed into the car seat and feeling every pothole the car runs over. It helps ground Klavier's experience, make it feel more concrete and real rather than a bunch of abstract ruminations in his head. And I love the line about folding up like an origami puzzle; it both paints a great image of Klavier in this super uncomfortable physical position and is a vivid illustraton of how he's feeling.

    I also like the glimpses of other characters that you give us through Klavier's eyes. The way Klavier sees Apollo now, and the way he talks about Daryan, give a wonderful perspective on them that feels unique to Gavin and also gives a great overview of his relationship with them in a small amount of space. His relationship with Apollo in particular feels very genuine; you can see what he sees in Apollo, if that makes sense, why he values him and the positives it brings to his life.

    I do have to admit that Klavier here doesn't seem a tremendous amount like Klavier as I remember him from the games, although whether that's down to my spotty memory or differences in the AU rather than what's in the story here, I don't know. He just didn't really strike me as the self-hating type! But one way or another, I think it would have been nice to see some of his quirkier side, and the more teasing relationship he had with Apollo in the games, come through here. Obviously this a dark and dramatic one-shot, so going as quirky as the games tend to with the characters probably wouldn't work too well, but I think a little dose of it would help sell the characters and get a little more of the Ace Attorney flavor into the story. Or some more references to music, something... Just some more flashes of Klavier's personality besides him feeling bad.

    All in all, though, you pack a lot of emotion into a pretty small amount of space with this one. You seem to have a pretty good sense of how to write drama and people feeling bad... Had a little bit of practice with that, perhaps? ;) Nice character piece, good and angsty fun!
  8. diamondpearl876

    diamondpearl876 → follow your fire.

    Haha, see, the AU is interesting because it essentially still is the Apollo Justice plot, but with a lot of twists. ...As I typed that, I realized that probably sounds a lot less interesting given the history of Pokemon fanfics, but. Trust me that the AU fic I mentioned is fantastic.

    Thanks! :3 I must admit I do think the first half of this one-shot is one of the best things I've written in a while. It's been forever since I've dabbled in Ace Attorney fanfic, too, and if this is what I can write when I'm sick of my main projects... Well, Ace Attorney might just be my default from now on. XD I love love love working with these characters.

    This is fair. This version of Klavier is fairly common in the fandom - or at least, it was when I was active in it. I've written him like this before, although the finer details of his character in this particular piece was... difficult to implement. I couldn't really remember a lot of them from the AU fic I was pulling inspiration from, and I didn't want to crowd the piece with details that also required me to re-tell the plot. I'll keep this in mind for the next time I write this fandom, which is hopefully soon, hehe.

    Lol, wink wink indeed. ;) If only I could muster the motivation to write every time I'm going experiencing drama and feeling bad, eh? Usually, I can't write a single word at all.

    Glad you enjoyed this! Thanks for reading and commenting! :D
  9. Umbramatic

    Umbramatic The Ghost Lord

    Well, this managed to catch my eye. This being an Ace Attorney fic was very intriguing even though most of my knowledge of the franchise is secondhand, but you know what? This fic managed to stay intresting despite that.

    Despite being a bit thrown off by the second person, I enjoyed your take on the perspective of Klavier, legendary [BLEEP]boy, the one who last I heard can impregnate literally anyone just by them looking at him - except this AU version of him has a lot more baggage and at this point just wants to get away and stick with Apollo, which is cool.

    The bits of backstory were nice even if I didn't understand all of it, and Klavier's relationship with Apollo was cool. The one thing that bugs me is that it's apparently a shipfic and... mabye I wasn't reading closely enough (and feel free to call me out if I wasn't) I didn't really feel any romance so much as close platonic friendship. Not that that's bad - one of my current main chapterfics is presicely about a strong platonic friendship - but mabye make it a little more lovey dovey ya know? ;)

    But this is a cute oneshot and in my totally uneducated opinon you should write Ace Attorney more often!
    diamondpearl876 likes this.
  10. Phoenixsong

    Phoenixsong you taste like fear

    Ace Attorney fic! I don't think I've ever actually read any before… not in a long while, at least. I'm also kind of rusty on AA4 because it's been ages, but as this is an AU I suppose that only matters so much, eh?

    I'm loving the really punchy description out of the gate. Klavier's nervousness and fear are immediately evident… the only question remains, why? What happened? This has me eager to find out, for some value of "eager" given that it's probably… not great.

    The picture comes together really slowly—what about the stage show and being in chains as part of an act nearly killed Klavier, I wonder? Why did Apollo have to kill Daryan? Hm! (You mentioned elsewhere that the AU this is based on still closely follows the plot of the game, but I… I'm having a hard time remembering how the game went in the first place, honestly :p Obviously Apollo didn't kill anyone, and I know Daryan was the culprit in that case, but I remember, like, nothing else, haha. It makes trying to piece this together a little confusing! Not at all a problem with the fic, though, just an observation. I'm enjoying the ride either way!)

    Tiny note—might just be me, but "droning" implies a specific sort of sound (low, maybe buzzing) that doesn't really match "whishing", so this reads a little oddly.

    Ah, okay—Daryan was abusive. That starts to answer those earlier questions, then. You've got a nice combination of both an explicitly described injury/incident (the earring) and leaving one to the imagination (not just a broken toe, but a mutilated one—and how? what did Daryan do that caused the injury to deserve that descriptor? Not sure I actually want to know, of course...)

    Still can't remember the specifics of the game and how Klavier and his brother got on, but I can't help but think of Kristoph here, too : /

    D :

    This part took me a minute, I admit—I guess I didn't register that Apollo and Kristoph had actually been in a relationship as well until I read your response to another review (the earlier paragraph still seemed like it could solely be referring to them working together… although now I read again, there is that comparison to Daryan that doesn't make much sense unless that's what you're implying), so I didn't catch that Apollo is actually showing Klavier his own first-aid kit there. I'm not sure whether it's lack of familiarity with the base AU, whether something can be done to make this slightly less subtle, or whether it's just the usual suspect of me being extremely dense and bad at picking up little hints, so I don't know if it really needs changing. But now that I do get it, I like this gesture a lot! and also am sad. It says a lot without you having to say too much, and hopefully gives Klavier a little more reason to trust Polly. What with him being reluctant to admit his own abuse (sometimes even in his own head as he tries to cope), having someone else you care for open up about theirs is powerful.

    Yeah, like that! Although it still hurts to see that he's even considering that such a reason might exist. Understandable, though, given what he's been through.

    I'm not normally interested in shipping, either, but I think this was well worth it because, first and foremost, it's just so beautifully written. So many evocative descriptions, just the right amount of understatement (and I even got most of it the first time through, so points for me I guess?) that'll still punch you in the gut with all the weight behind it. I guess that's how it is with abuse in general, though, isn't it? Victims can get to be pretty good at setting up a facade and downplaying everything that happens to them, so what you get is "oh, I just stubbed my toe, it's fine", when what's really meant is a whole seething mess of anger and violence and mutilation like you probably couldn't imagine unless you've gone through it yourself. It's pretty heartbreaking, honestly.

    I do agree with some of the other reviews that Klavier's self-loathing and nervousness are a pretty stark contrast to what you see in canon (at least, to readers who haven't read much material from other parts of the fandom… and hey, it's not like you can't put up a brave front by appearing confident and unflappable, right?), so it took some getting used to, but at the same time it was so fascinating and sad to watch him squirm and worry and have fight so hard to see that his situation might actually be improving.

    So, yes! Very well-written with a lot of impact. It's unfortunate to hear that you weren't in a great place when you wrote this, but the emotion felt plenty raw, and I suppose that's why—I don't want to say "worth it", but I am glad that you felt like getting this out and sharing it, because it's amazing. I do hope things are generally better for you by now, and I think I'm going to have to make more of an effort to check out your other stuff!
    diamondpearl876 likes this.
  11. diamondpearl876

    diamondpearl876 → follow your fire.

    Glad you liked it, and thanks for the comments! I could indeed stand to have added more romance-y bits... 'cause I can definitely see the more platonic side of it. I guess more physical affection would've felt inappropriate, given the nature of the abuse described in here, so I focused more on emotions.

    I'm glad the hook worked. I was worried it might come across as a little... melodramatic, but I guess it's hard to pin it as melodrama without knowing the details of why the tension exists.

    Yeah, I've been told my prose has a habit of meandering, which inevitably slows the pace down. The questions you asked were changes made in the AU, heh.

    Makes sense! Thanks for pointing it out. :3

    I didn't want to go into the gruesome gory details that would make readers wanna cringe heavily or anything, yeah. ^^; Seems I struck a good balance, though, so that's nice to hear!

    The games don't really explore Klavier and Kristoph's familial relationship, unfortunately. Klavier has reservations about outing Kristoph as a culprit, showing some thin thread of closeness between them, but that's about it.

    Fair enough! I agree I could've stood to be less subtle here, and in some other places of the one-shot, given all the straying from canon. I don't blame you (and others) for not piecing everything together immediately with the way it's written, since I kinda had to space out the exposition lest it was just one big boring infodump.

    Thanks for checking it out, even if you don't like shipping! (It just occurred to me writing this reply that the fic might've needed to be posting in the shipping section instead. Oops.) Abuse is definitely a terrible, terrifying thing like that, and I wanted to get into the shoes of someone who experienced it to portray it properly. Seems I did well enough there. :)

    This is definitely fair, and if I were to go back and edit this, this would be the #1 thing I'd try to work to fix. My thought process was that someone having this rough a time in life wouldn't be able to replicate that upbeat-ness, no matter how upbeat they are usually. And Klavier trusts and is comfortable around Apollo enough to not have to put up that front. The implications of not trusting Apollo are more a result from him being betrayed in the past rather than a reflection on Apollo himself, if that makes sense.

    Your comments mean a lot, thank you so much! <3 I'm definitely in a better place now, and I appreciate such kind thoughts. It may or may not be good news for you that 99% of my writing is very character-focused and emotion-driven like this. Writing's both therapeutic and a good teacher in the way of empathy for me, heh. If you do check out my other work, I'll be interested in hearing what you think!

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