astielle asks with spoilers up to chapter 32!
as someone who enjoys the thing everyone's saying "what the fuck" about, I for one am delighted. thank you for the nightmares, Kitty
So many great things this chapter! The Storm Prince! Minnows Boys!! The description of a dish that had me going, "This?? Doesn't sound appetizing? At all??" All of it is so good, thanks for another banger
chapter 31 made me suddenly feel like i was seeing the Matrix. like i can perfectly envision this exact horseshit endgame fetch quest that needs the ultra rarest ingredient from each of the food minigames. and then you complete it and it took you 10 real time hours and it spits out a food item that gives no benefits, its just a developer joke about how fucking stupid it would be to just put all the rich people shit in one dish, who puts gold leaf on a pizza. and you're like, thanks yoko taro.
you have to assume that every guide mentions multiple times that you don't have to do this unless you're trying to get 100% because there isn't even an achievement for it. everyone's so mad there's no cheevo for this.
hello, re: asimovsideburns' ask about black drakonis' gender & whole vibe being representative of lynette: screaming crying sobbing my life is ruined im emo // also: the stardew island vibes of this sidequest were off the charts and I fucking loved it // also also: "you hated me. you liked the face" broke my whole damn heart.
A: Aww! Pink truffles! So cute! B: Actually they're only pink because they're STAINED with BLOOD. A: D:
Okay, so it seems I'm not the only one whose attention was caught by “they’re eating her” and YES my thoughts also turned to Black Drakonis. (Sidenote, love how she's distinguished from Ari's White/Moonlight Drakonis even though she's THE ONLY ONE usually.) BUT there IS another very significant HER who is missing. Someone associated with seas (possibly also storms?)... and Leonas. So....
i'm still thinking about "they're eating her," and props to the commenters who suggested Black Drakonis because that absolutely had not occurred to me, BUT it did make me think of another possibility. i am reminded of the fairy king's comment about eating Leonas' extra magic, and Leonas talking about how wells of magic form, and the island being surrounded by storms that seem to impact Leonas specifically... Cyrnae?
It surprised me that everyone thought the her was black drakonis - i had assumed it was leonas' fucking MOM! Like, she's a PIRATE SEA WITCH QUEEN, they're on an ISLAND WITH STORMS ... I assumed Leland flesh puppeted her there and buried her corpse. And. You know. I really Hope its black drakonis actually
Am currently imagining that to really capture the open world rpg feel 'decompressing' goes on for 5-10 years, everyone gets used to either the hero popping through with the monster and the heir, or the hero popping through with an unknown blonde sun-witch and a white tauril both wearing excessively large hats to hide their faces (depending on the local political situation)
genuinely thought about how goddamn funny it would be to just throw in a massive timeskip with only vague references to all the sidequests they did, but that would mean either they deal with their issues off-screen (unacceptable) or else they spend like five years just not dealing with it at all (plausible actually)
chapters 30 and 31 have such a calm before the storm feeling and on the one hand I'm so worried that the monster city is about to get besieged and on the other hand I can't wait to see what kind of absolute home alone nonsense the brutelings built
I Am So Upset About The Lost
they're just little guys
How am I supposed to sleep after that? Undead children trapped eternally in an underground prison shaped like a missile silo, I'm sure THAT won't haunt my dreams. Were they made on purpose? Some kind of ritual undead creation by sunpriests? Who put the fake sword there? What did Vaelon do there? What the ever-loving hell? Between this and the storm island trees eating someone this story is becoming less porn and more nightmare fuel.
it's like they say, one man's porn is another man's nightmare fuel
Thank you for the exceptionally creepy chapter! Since you are doing lore: 1) have we seen if the Heir's blessing has a concrete effect, like the other two's blessings (like the existence of other monsters and the fact they get reincarnated together)? 2) How were the monsters able to move the Sunshield and the Starshield after Lynette and Valeon died?
the only concrete effect of lynette's blessing is the nature of the circumstances of the heir/guardian's birth (they are always born with something that is theirs to protect)
karzarul had to be the one who moved them! whether or not he came up with a workaround to avoid it burning him the entire time is left as an exercise for the reader
Yessss! Finally some moon-cult/moon-cultist things! I'm so curious!
Okay, but the children WERE alive, unless Undead can learn to read... right?
parchment/paper could be written on or interacted with in a way that would make it clear if they'd been used, but there isn't any way of telling if any of the tablets or toys were actually used after they'd been left there
I'm loving Astielle, but I'm feeling kind of stupid because I had no idea what was going on in the last chapter. Was I supposed to get it, or is the reader to be confused until the pieces come together in a later chapter
there was. a LOT happening. hopefully things will get clearer as we go! as the person writing it i am not a good judge of how much anyone should be able to figure out already, hahaha
I have no idea where the hell the Lost worldbuilding is headed but I am INTERESTED
Minnow taking them into the temple without explaining anything about the Lost made me really sympathize with my followers in Skyrim. Like yes *I* have played the game before and know there are draugr and the wiki tells me about the evil necromancers in this cave but poor Lydia has to be like, "hey, dragonborn? What the fuck. I've never seen so many Falmer in my LIFE. The last cave just had a bear and this one holds the most famous vampire in the world???" (Great chapter, 10/10)
"stop asking me why we're here like it's my fault, this is just where the quest marker is pointing"
THERE ARE MOTHERFUCKING ZOMBIES NOW?????
Okay, I have a legitimate question, and I don't mean to make it sound judgey or anything bc I'm in too deep now, and I'm gonna go on reading no matter what. But I just wanna know, for the record. Do you... know where this is going? Do you know how each plotline ends?
Also, even through the Astielle!apocalypseverse, you managed to make me awwwww at this:
"She is the one who spoke to me. She is the one I understand. No Goddess bound me to her; I bound myself from the first.”
Serious Wuthering Heights vibes with "he's more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same". THEIR CONNECTION IS WHAT WISHED HIM TO LIFE I'm going insane
i think i know how it ends! mostly! i ended up being wrong about what was up with the undead when i first implied they existed in chapter like, 22ish? it think that was the first time, the catacombs mostly seemed like normal catacombs aside from leonas talking to skulls so i don't think that counts.
Ok firstly comparative linguistics and archaeology is my jam so jot that down. Love this chapter what amazing worldbuildig. But i see why youve been lamenting the need for lore haha cant wait to see where this goes!
having to double-check if i ever mentioned the ruined temple being in a different country (or literally anything about it at all) was so goddamn stressful why do i not take notes
What's the fuss about! It's just a good chapter featuring linguistics and necessary funerary practices. Nothing to be sad about at all. Just some thinkers. It's fine.
(Teasing aside, I love the new direction of lore, it's great.)
HELL yes. That's certified good as hell undead lore.
i LOVE the concept of sun zombies so much holy shit
I have strong feelings about Minnow POV (not JUST for the sweet sweet hit of a character who isn't acknowledging their feelings it's just reflected in their uncharacteristic actions) but I really!! "I need to take my boyfriends to the creepy temple so they can tell me what's the thing that's out of place. Is it a single piece of paper? A stone out of place? The hordes of zombie children? The alphabet?"
It's SO MUCH in the BEST WAY
furtherly, upon reread:
1. implications about NEW Undead that Minnow has seen is, frankly, unsettling, given that the corpses downstairs start at 1000 years old? The entire construction is.. unsettling.
2. taking a moment to hate the king for, "real children, the ones that don’t have a soul eternal."
3. Minnow taking a moment to think, "I need to get Leonas a swooshy cloak so he can make more dramatic exits" was gr9
4. TREE FEELINGS
So, Karzarul has never seen Undead before. It follows he's never tried his magic kill-anything bow on them before. I reason he's also immune to the sunlight draining, on account of not having any sunlight in him.
Everyone is all "kitty wtf" and I'm just here like "OOOHHHHH I thought the Moon made whole bodies into zombies it but aktually the Sun zealots made the Moon cultists handle their bullshit and that, frankly, is just rude"
I have CONCERNS about the people who worship the sun empire. Can we talk death cult??? Literally???????
starting to think these sun guys might be problematic
Sunsweet is a brand name that allows its owner, some kind of plum growers' association, to differentiate their unsweetened prunes from whatever the compression was like when they started the brand. Or something like that. Probably. Anyway, Sundead.
First of all, you're welcome for the what the fuck chain second of all
HOLY SHIT I LOVED 32!!! The INSTANT they found the toy I was like "oh no I'm not gonna like this" and then they found the early reader cards and I was like "OH NO IM REALLY NOT GONNA LIKE THIS" and it was SO GOOD the atmosphere the tension building the fact that minnow is SO unsettled and upset and she can't explain herself and, like, honestly POOR ELIAS
I feel like a youtuber does a let's play of his game in the interest of ~completion~ cause they've done the rest of the games and people look back and go "okay the game sucks but the concept FUCKS" and there's a fanfic niche that's LITERALLY just his thoughts as he places the star sword in this fucked up undead nursery
Also. Like. The Lore of the sun goddess just going "aren't bodies supposed to, like, move and shit?" and creating these really sad zombies and they bit about the EYES GOD that's such a tasty concept. I can't Really form thoughts about the kids beyond "how tragic that they never got to live and aren't allowed to die"
Anyway, internal screaming now external screaming good chapter 10/10 excellent angst
In the context of the new chapter.... this happened to Jonys! Like Aimon didn't invent a terrible sun-reanimation, he found a hack to speed up the process. And maybe control him so thats its own thing but it still 😳 Aimon must have seen the temple - what could it have possibly been like when Vaelon went to make the door?? LOTS of thoughts about this chapter
Kitty. Kitty! KITTY!! OUCH. this chapter HURT. great job with creating the atmosphere and setting the crumbs, i really enjoyed reading it. I loved when Ari showed off his intelligence, how some things so natural to him are so alien to the other two. Poor Minnow and Leonas.. Many hard things to face here. Poor babies, i want to hug them. Loved Ari's reaction to Leonas's 'minute'. After so many deaths of course he would have a reaction to it (even if it was most often the hero who killed him.)
There being *so many* unwanted children who became changelings might be subject to the opposite of survivorship bias (kids from many different generations would stay the same age and all end up grouped in the same place and time), but being so certain of how there will be families who don't want their kids from such a young age probably did something to Minnow's perception of the world. (at least she was primed to distrust Leland?)
"Nothing breeds that lives forever." It took me until a reread this morning to parse that this was saying the immortality blessing comes with infertility (which would explain why Leonas never got anyone pregananant)
leonas probably wasn't being particularly cooperative with his father's plans, in fairness
but since it applies to anything that lives forever, it also isn't a matter of their being specifically targeted or anything
Obviously a chapter filled with revelations, big fan. And this is definitely an important emotional moment for Leonas. Cannot Help but notice however, in the context of kink taxonomy hell, that you have made it impossible for anyone to get pregnant. My squicks are impossible, btw. It’s Canon. Lore even.
found family is mandatory and no one gets to have kids except phil. and unfortunately leland i guess.
Am I seriously the first person to go "YESSSSSSSSSS COMPARATIVE LINGUISTICS"?
Because that was awesome
i had to invent a word for the punctuation mark i invented. i didn't even explain it. i just threw that out there and everyone has to accept it now.
"Paracoronis" [No Google results] is this a made-up orthographical symbol that's part of the extensive lore backstory of which there will be scant mention in the work itself?
YUP THAT'S THE ONE
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Someone else was here. He could hear their boots in the underbrush, quiet as they were. His ears flicked. The fleeing pilgrim, back again? He turned his head at just the right moment to catch her eyes.
Mostly hidden behind a tree in the shadows of the leaves, she looked like one of the abandoned changelings of the Faewild Forest. She had all the tells of a child once touched but not claimed, reflective pupils and pointed ears and streaks of grass-green in her hair. For those who turned, the final effect was ethereal. Half-done, they looked like dolls abandoned in the dirt, broken and mossy.
This one was grown, though. As grown as any human ever was. What had made her leave the forest, where she could have lived on ageless and waiting?
“Hello,” he said, and her eyes widened.
“You speak Astia?” she asked. Her voice was small and coarse.
“Most Taurils do,” he said.
Her thick brows furrowed. “No they don’t.”
“I think I’d know better than you do,” he said, and she pressed her lips together. “Have you met many Taurils?”
“They keep trying to kill me,” she said. “I’ve never heard one talk.” Her eyes drifted lower, still high above her head. “Or wear clothes,” she said. “Armor, but not clothes.”
“I’m old,” he said, and her eyes narrowed as she tried to connect the two statements. “Your horse must be very fast,” he added, since few Taurils ‘tried’ to kill rather than simply succeeding.
She grinned, pearl-white teeth glinting like knives. “My sword is very sharp,” she corrected.
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