Colony 15.5

Come, little children, I’ll take thee away, into a land of enchantment… and also parahumans.

So, last time, Coil snared Taylor and Lisa into a rough spot. Today, we’re probably seeing whether Brian was right about his power not being able to fully replicate Victor’s past the immediate use. Judging by the way his power acted when he was tapping into Taylor’s, I think he was right, but we’ll have to see what happens.

Taylor, though, might be somewhat distracted by the news she just got from Lisa. She’ll probably spend a fair bit of this chapter considering her course of action, I think, though I don’t think she’s going to throw Lisa under the bus.

That is, if we don’t skip right to Taylor walking into the trap and having to figure out a way to get out of it without letting on that she knew about it from Lisa.

I’m more looking forward to the latter, but either way, this should be nice. Let’s go!

Colony 15.4

Howdy! It’s me again!

Last time, *LOUD SHIP HORN NOISE*

This time… morning after, perhaps checking on Taylor’s territory?

I don’t have much to go on, and I’m running kinda low on time for this session anyway, so let’s just cut to the chase and find out what 15.4 is about!

Interlude 15 (Donation Bonus #2)

Something about this chapter header seems familiar.

So, we’re back in Interlude territory. Damn, this Arc is hard to speculate on with the regular chapters, and then you add a whole bunch of Interludes? Which have historically been very hard to speculate on before I start?

Fair enough.

I’m gonna try anyway. So, who are we likely to get this time?

I’ve suggested this for several previous Interludes already, but I think it’s reasonable to bring up the Travelers again. They are very possibly going to be important when we start properly going up against Coil (which might be next Arc rather than this one), and their internal affairs – what we know of them – connect well with the previous chapter’s focus on communication and openness.

Relatedly, their situation is relevant to what I’ve supposed might be the story concept or theme of this Arc, with regards to groups falling apart due to internal conflict. The Travelers are very fragile in that sense, sticking together only because of some shared history and a promise.

I’ve wanted a Traveler Interlude for a while now, but right now the case for that actually coming up (if not in this Interlude, then in another one soon) is stronger that ever.

If we do get a Traveler Interlude, I suspect it’ll be Ballistic. Not counting the two Travelers behind the scenes, he’s the one we know the least, and for some reason I’ve gotten the impression that he might be the one who’d be most affected if he were to learn the 325 (which I believe belongs to Trickster, the second most likely Traveler to get an Interlude).

Otherwise… Maybe we could have an Interlude from the perspective of someone who runs into Armsmaster? That seems much less thematically consistent with the rest of the Arc, but I kinda just want an update on him. At least enough to tell whether he survived the Nine or not. (This is wishful thinking, of course. It’s probably better to wait until he floats back into relevance anyway.)

Without further ado, let’s take a look!

Colony 15.3

Wheretoefojefioj.

Yes, that sounds like a good, coherent way to start an intro post.

So, what are we in for today, besides finding out which of the Chosen the Undersiders have, well, chosen? Hmm… We’re probably going to be taking a moment to discuss why Lisa and Alec didn’t tell Taylor about their plan (whether it’s between the characters or just in Taylor’s narration). Maybe we’ll also get some more cracks in the group.

That seems to be the progression we’re going to see in this Arc. We started off with a chapter where the Undersiders seemed more whole than ever. Even Rachel and Taylor got along. Then we had an Interlude about a family breaking, and a chapter where a) Alec and Aisha pointed out the gap between the main trio and the, uh, background Undersiders, b) the same pair went on to joke about the “Othersiders” and the team splitting up, and c) the chapter ended on a note of dishonesty between teammates. Everything points to an increasing amount of fissures between the Undersiders as this Arc goes along. Little things that add up, mostly.

Oddly enough, I could see Rachel being the only one on Taylor’s side at some point. Now wouldn’t that be quite the inversion from what we’re used to.

I don’t think this is going to be permanent. The question is just how far it’s going to go before they manage to pull things together, and how long that’s going to take.

They’ve only got a few weeks if they want to get it together in time to take on Coil.

(…well, this is clearly a post I need to review in the Arc Thoughts. I hope I remember to do that.)

So yeah, without further ado, let’s take a look at what this chapter has to offer!

Colony 15.2

Alright, time to get this show back on the road!

Colony 15.1… damn, after that Interlude last time, it took me a moment to recall what even happened in 15.1. It’s coming back to me, though.

So, the Undersiders are going up against Coil in sneaky ways. How exactly are they going about this? It seems like they do think it might come to blows eventually, but they’re focusing on more covert operations at first.

The obvious answer would be trying to sneak Dinah out somehow, but that doesn’t seem particularly easy. Especially if Coil himself is around when they try, in either of his realities. Then again nobody said this would be easy.

But no. I don’t think that’s really why that doesn’t seem like the right option. I think it’s more that it’s too obvious. If it was that simple, we’d know it by now. No, Skitter has a plan and it’s going to be a lot more interesting than that.

Maybe they’re going to undermine Coil and cause his whole setup to collapse before he can stop it with his power? Somehow? And grab Dinah in the ensuing chaos?

I don’t really know what their plan is, and I’m itching to get back to some Worm, so let’s go and find out! Probably.

Interlude 15 (Donation Bonus)

Well, that’s a surprise! An Interlude this early in the Arc? Sure, why not.

So who are we following today, then?

I’m inclined to think we’re about to learn a thing or two about the Travelers and their perception of Coil. Maybe one of them finds out what the Undersiders are up to somehow.

Perhaps more importantly, a Traveler Interlude would give us a chance to find out what the hell their deal actually is. I’m thinking Trickster’s perspective would be ideal for that, but Ballistic is more likely because we don’t know him as well as the other main Travelers. Maybe Ballistic finds out the 325?

If it’s not the Travelers… I have no clue who it’d be. Who else is relevant to this Arc that hasn’t had an Interlude? Brian, I suppose, but I don’t think we’re getting him right now. Rachel’s minions (I feel like Barker and Biter might be put to use at some point), but they don’t seem important enough to get an Interlude yet…

I don’t know.

So let’s find out!

Colony 15.1

It’s that time again – time to start a new Arc!

Due to this ask I now know that Prey is considered the end of book 2, which I means that we are not ending the book in Colony. That has implications: For one thing, this is very likely an Interlude Arc like Sentinel.

For another, we’re most likely not seeing an attack from the Simurgh yet unless this Arc follows characters from a different location dealing with that, which I find unlikely because unlike regular Interludes, judging by Sentinel, Interlude Arcs seem like they should be at the beginnings of the books and an Endbringer attack is very much something that belongs at the end of a book. Although with the scaling of the threats, maybe that won’t be the case for much longer. Also, this Endbringer attack would need to have some connection to the main plot – getting to see the attack just because it is happening would be weird, considering that at this point, they’re just a thing that happens in this world. Thirdly, we’d need to have reason to care about the characters involved, though I suspect Wildbow could pull that off.

So if this is an Interlude Arc and not an Endbringer Arc, what are we in for? Whose POV?

My first thought is the population of Taylor’s territory. But we’ve just had an Interlude from the POV of one of a total two or so non-Taylor residents we have reason to want an Interlude from the POV of.

Hmm. Colony, ant colony, ants, workers… Docks? Something to do with the rebuilding of the town? Or maybe the Guild, finally learning what their deal is beyond “Dragon is part of both the Protectorate and the Guild”?

I don’t know. Even with some of my options practically ruled out by the knowledge that this isn’t included in the Slaughterhouse Nine book, this Arc remains very hard to speculate on. Much like regular Interludes, actually.

I think it’s time that I just jump in and find out! And try not to get bitten by too many ants that are pissed at me for jumping into their Colony.

Interlude 14.5 (Bonus Interlude)

Let’s see how Wildbow decided to number this one… my money’s on 14½…

“Interlude 14.5 (Bonus Interlude)”. Alright, sure! One of these days I’ll probably get to a point where Wildbow starts to get more consistent about these, but it doesn’t look like today is that day.

Anyway, howdy! It’s time for the beginning of the end of the end of the end (but not THE end)!

(That is, the beginning of this Interlude, which is the end of the pair of Interludes that make up the end of the Arc, which is (I think) the end of the larger arc that covers the Slaughterhouse Nine’s presence in this part of the story, but not THE end of the story as a whole. That makes sense, right?)

So, for less nonsensical things, what are we in for tonight?

It’s a little late and I’m eager to get into the chapter, so I think I’ll let Pastwell do most of the talking here:

So – there’s one more Interlude before we reach the end of Arc 14. I don’t know if I dare to hope that it’ll be Charlotte’s POV, though that’d be neat. She’s my favorite of the drones (Sierra didn’t manage to take over that spot in this Interlude), and there’s clearly a story to be told regarding her reaction to Sugita. And I’d like to hear how she perceives Skitter too.

But if it’s not her… maybe someone in the Chosen (Cricket in particular comes to mind) learning about Hookwolf having gone?

Or maybe someone who was deeply affected by the miasma, perhaps finding out the member of the Nine they killed in self defense was actually a family member or something? Except the Interludes usually have an impact on the main story somehow. Maybe they’d trigger in response to the realization, or something like that. But now I’m less speculating and more making up a fanfic premise (that has probably been done at least five times). What kind of power would that lead to… Maybe the power to know who anyone you see is?

The one thing Pastwell seemed to neglect in that last paragraph is that maybe such a character would be a parahuman already, someone we already know. Who would be best suited for something like that, thematically? I’d say Amy, but we already know that doesn’t work. Again, though, I doubt we’re actually getting this tonight. It’s too specific a guess, and a bit too fanfic-y.

I don’t think I have anything else to add, so let’s get into the finale of Prey! 😀

Interlude 14

Howdy! It’s time to wrap up Prey – and, at long last, the presence of the Slaughterhouse Nine in Brockton Bay – with an Interlude.

Who are we in for today? Well, that’s usually pretty difficult to speculate on, but I had some ideas at the end of the previous chapter:

If it’s an Interlude… fuck, Interludes are so difficult to speculate on. Maybe we’d have a look at what someone else has been up to under the miasma’s effect? Ooh, maybe we could get Legend’s perspective on the miasma and his head clearing? Though I do feel like if Wildbow had had a Legend Interlude planned around the time of Interlude 13, he might’ve saved the details on Legend’s family life for Legend’s own Interlude.

Another option is that we might follow one of the Nine – Bonesaw, Siberian or Mannequin if he’s alive – and seeing how they feel about the retreat. That feels wrong, though, due to the finality issue.

Hmm. Honestly, I feel like a Protectorate perspective on the Bakuda bombing and its consequences would be quite appropriate, ideally from someone who didn’t know about it like Legend did. Though such a thing could still be presented from Legend’s POV, as someone confronts him and/or Piggy about it.

But we’ve got other Protectorate characters we could use for that, such as Triumph or one of Legend’s people.

Then again, we had a PRT perspective last time. It’s probably more likely Wildbow’s going to switch it up.

Victoria could be an interesting and relevant POV character, but I’m not sure she’s in a good state to be giving her POV right now.

I should probably just jump into it and find out. Let’s go!

Prey 14.11

Concept: Parahumans spin-off set in Scotland.

Parahummus.

Well! Now that your expectations for my sense of humor tonight have been dutifully set, let’s read some Worm!

So, what are we in for tonight? I’m thinking we’re getting a dénouement, for real this time, focused on reuniting with and curing the other Undertravelers of the miasma. Who even knows what sorts of antics they’ve gotten themselves into while they didn’t know who was who? We do know Bentley ended up at street level somehow, so tracking everyone down might not be as easy as going back to where she left them. Let alone curing them. But I think by the end of the chapter, at least most of them will be reunited. We’ll likely also get some discussion about the implications of Jack escaping the city.

Alternatively, in spite of the final line of 14.10, maybe Taylor isn’t ready to give up on making sure Jack and Bonesaw don’t get away and, to her knowledge, catalyze the end of the world. But I really don’t know how she’d find them in time without Cherish’s help, and I doubt Cherish is particularly willing to help out anymore, if she thinks Jack might schedule a stop by her place (I don’t think he gives a flying fuck about saving Cherish).

I’m strongly leaning towards the former option, largely because of the finality in how 14.10 ended.

So yeah, I don’t think there’s much to do but take a look!