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for The Collaborator

12/15/2018 c28 54Animorphgirl
I thought I had submitted my review last night, but it clearly didn't show up, and, odder still, the review text was still there today. Anyway, here are my thoughts...I am still finding it difficult to find much to like about Sara, aside from her well intentions towards Kalran and Oglud. Oddly enough, Ilkiss isn't included in the Yeerks who risked Kandrona starvation for her. Was he (?) in the Peace Movement? From my memory, the earlier chapter containing him comforting Kalran doesn't elicit any strong reaction from Sara, unlike Carla's mere existence as a voluntary host. It would seem difficult for Kalran and Oglud to remain involved with a mate who was not in the Movement, but perhaps he was (at the very least) sympathetic to their cause? Just an oddity I wanted to point out. I wish that Kalran would take a more aggressive role in both her defense of Carla as a person, and the idea that voluntary humans were hardly willing participants in the Yeerks' invasion of the planet. Cooperating because you either liked your Yeerk, or to gain better treatment, is a far cry from forming an alliance with the Yeerk empire before you were likely to be infested. Sara must know this on some level-she's certainly smart enough-but involuntary humans like her should have this information explained to them so that they can understand it. Carla's refusal to fight Silrin says more about her friendship with her Yeerk than it does about how she feels about the empire as a whole.

One thing that has nagged me for several chapters, and I hope you bring it up: does Carla have any weapons that she can use to defend herself? Living in an unsafe area and working at night, it would be practical for her to have a gun and know how to use it. As someone who's been attacked by former involuntary hosts, she must be aware of the risk. Moreover, she now has at least some disposable income-more than enough to afford a decent weapon. Really, Alniss and the other Yeerks should "invest" in similar combat tools, as the likelihood of them still owning Dracon beams is quite slim.

Very well written chapter. Hope the next one involves Carla and some of our other favorite Yeerks!
12/15/2018 c28 25godfreyraphael
Lots of grudges still remaining between the likes of Sara and Akhir. Then again, nobody holds a grudge like a human, especially when said human feels really aggrieved about something that the Yeerk may or may not have done. Well, it's always easier to blame someone for your troubles even when they may not have had anything to directly do with it. The whole situation is messed up no matter what.

Oh, and Karen's back! Now that's a surprise I didn't see coming! I wonder how much of an impact she will have in the story going forward. Keep up the good work!
11/22/2018 c27 godfreyraphael
That was sad to see, how Carla kept comparing herself to Jasmine and Akhir and how she kept thinking how things could have been different had Silrin still been alive. On the other hand, it was a bit funny to see how awkward and tongue-tied Alniss felt once she began letting Carla make her own choices. She got put on the spot, that's for sure! And Carla's all "What's going on?" At least she's willing to let Alniss talks about it when Alniss wants to. Things are beginning to really heat up! I wonder what the next chapter will bring?
11/21/2018 c27 5YPM-33-KI
Alniss really is trying her best, isn't she? Her interactions with Carla seem really awkward now, but I expect they'll get less awkward again once Alniss gets more used to giving Carla freedom.

I imagine Carla and Silrin would have been a lot like how I imagine Jasmine and Akhir being, had Silrin survived the war: namely, with Silrin doing her best to let Carla be independent, with Carla for her part being more than happy to just defer to her yeerk on most/all matters of importance. I imagine Carla would love the arrangement, even though objectively it would be far from ideal.

Great chapter, as ever. I look forward to reading more!
11/21/2018 c27 54Animorphgirl
Great development here. I hadn't realized that Carla had been at the pizza place for nearly a year. I suppose that means she's been living with the Yeerks for about a year and a half? She's definitely become more relaxed around them, although, clearly, Alniss and Kalran are the ones she's closest to. The time also explains how Alniss' business has become so successful-clearly, word of mouth, combined with good food! It was heartbreaking to see how Carla reacted to Jasmine and Akhir's closeness. I suppose that Alniss was feeling too uneasy to take on the same sort of role with Carla, at least in their company. I'm curious about Jasmine's backstory. Based on Maya's age, she was probably about three or so when her mom became infested. It seems that Jasmine is a single mom...so, is she a widow, divorced, or misfortunate enough to discover that her boyfriend was a creep who left her when she became pregnant? Or, perhaps, none of the above. You might want to fill the readers in on this, as it could explain why she's so shy, and even insecure.

I guess that Alniss' consent means that Carla will definitely meet with Elsa, perhaps with Alniss and Kalran there for emotional support? I hope this meeting comes quickly!

One small thing: I don't know if you're using a different word processing program, but the formatting came up a little weird on my computer screen. You'll see what I mean if you view it from your computer. Fortunately, my phone was able to view everything okay. Just a word of caution in case you have a new computer or something!

Looking forward to the next installment!
11/15/2018 c26 5YPM-33-KI
Alniss really does need to learn to let go, doesn't she? I really like the way you contrast between Alniss' and Akhir's views on hosts: Alniss seems to talk about humans like like they're beneath her - even Carla, to some extent - whle Akhir seems to actually view Jasmine as her equal (albeit in a somewhat overprotective manner).

I'm wondering if Alniss will ever come around to see Elsa's point of view on all this? I mean, hating Elsa for -not- just rolling over and accepting infestation seems a little...skewed, to say the least.
11/13/2018 c26 25godfreyraphael
Things are beginning to heat up for the nothlits, aren't they? It feels like they're simultaneously making progress and getting stuck. I don't know how it's possible, but I think that's what's happening to them. And I love how Alniss thinks that she should be closer to Carla, as close as Silrin was, and it probably didn't help her cause when she saw how at ease Jasmine and Akhir were to each other. Well, when you've been inside someone's body and interacted with their mind as closely as Yeerks have with their hosts, it would be inevitable that you will get to know almost their every move eventually.
11/12/2018 c26 54Animorphgirl
Powerful chapter. I imagine that Carla will meet Jasmine after returning back to Alniss' home, since Jasmine was still there when Alniss and Akhir left. Will we see any of that encounter? I have to admit, I was hoping that this chapter would feature Carla and Elsa officially meeting, perhaps with Kalran as a sort of buffer, but you did really well with this setup. It's great to see Alniss opening herself up to another Yeerk who had a voluntary host, and seeing that there are various ways of interacting with your host other than "controlling" them. Makes me wonder what she would have thought about how Silrin treated Carla during the war. I get the feeling that Silrin ignored the barriers set by the Yeerk empire by outright befriending Carla, even if she never joined the Peace Movement. Then again, as Alniss noted, Carla was a rarity. Great job, and hope that your next chapter comes shortly-and doesn't suffer any deletions on the part of your computer! ;)
10/31/2018 c25 5YPM-33-KI
I must say I could have quite happily punched Sara by the end of this chapter. I mean, with Elsa trying so hard to keep herself together, you'd have thought Sara would do a better job of keeping her feelings in check - particularly given that Sara had a way easier time of the war then Elsa did. Of course, Elsa - does - seem to be a pretty extraordinary individual, so perhaps Sara merely looks bad by comparison.

I must say I thought the dialogue in this chapter was particularly well-written, and I could really feel the emotions of the three characters involved. I look forward to reading more!
10/24/2018 c25 25godfreyraphael
Everything Sara sees in this chapter seems to have been colored by her view that all Empire Yeerks are bad, to the point that every little thing that Akhir does has a negative connotation for Sara (yeah, that may be hyperbole but the point stands). And as a previous reviewer had already noted, logically it should have been Elsa who was all angry and bitter at Akhir while Sara should be the more conciliatory one but it didn't happen that way. As to why, no one can really tell though. The human mind is really such a strange and confusing thing. And I guess it also takes all kinds to raise awareness for the plight of the unhosted Yeerks. Can't wait for the next chapter!
10/23/2018 c25 54Animorphgirl
I have to say I admired Elsa in this chapter about as much as I found Sara to be a whiny and spoiled brat. Of the two of them, Elsa has the right to be angry, with her experiences with cruel Yeerks. Maybe they weren't all cruel, but even one cruel one is too many. Sara, on the other hand, only really suffered for a couple of weeks before Kalran joined the Peace Movement, and experienced little to no use of her body being used as a means of recruitment for family and friends. Yet, Sara acts as though people like her and Kalran were the only decent creatures in the war (minus the Animorphs) and any Yeerk who didn't join the Peace Movement was automatically evil. And, of course, all voluntary hosts should be shunned, if not physically attacked. I suppose this just demonstrates what a great writer you are! Looking forward to the next chapter, and I hope we'll see a meeting between Elsa and Carla shortly. Perhaps, Elsa can even act as a buffer between people like Sara and Kelly!
10/14/2018 c24 25godfreyraphael
I guess it's understandable that Kalran will feel the way she feels. As a Yeerk, you think that permanently morphing into a human would be a good thing, but then reality sinks in and that reality is that being human sucks. Lots of humans think being human sucks so why would an alien feel any different, especially if said alien is probably the target of post-war discrimination? And it's probably an encouraging sign that Elsa is willing to extend an offer to talk to Carla. It could lead to nothing much or it could lead to something substantial.

And speaking of Elsa, here's something I noticed in the previous chapter but I didn't want to mention it until a new chapter has been posted. Elsa's sister is named Annie, and Annie is a possible nickname for someone named Anna. Is this coincidence or is this intentional? No matter what, I just thought it was funny (in a nice way). Cant wait for the next chapter!
10/14/2018 c24 54Animorphgirl
Such a powerful chapter! It was fascinating to see Carla talk with Kalran about her use of alcohol, especially how must correspond with her own alcoholism. I wonder how much of that insight was given to her by Silrin during their two years together? I have to admit, I didn't see that coming with Kalran-I figured she just wasn't sleeping and/or eating well since the attack on the Yeerk Pool. It also makes sense that Kalran misses her Yeerk body. She's really lost so much since becoming a nothlit, with her mate having to remain as a Yeerk, and then her other mate and her realizing that a relationship as humans wouldn't work out. I suppose that if humans and Andalites were able to cure nothlits in the future, Kalran and the others could use this to revert back to their Yeerk forms. Not that this is likely anytime soon.

It was great to see what Elsa wrote in the letter. You can see how she struggled with finding the right words to convey how she felt. In hindsight, it might have been best for her to show Kalran the letter beforehand, if only to omit the part about Silrin. It's unfortunate, too, because the only other person who could potentially vouch for Elsa is Hallim, and even he wouldn't be able to say for certain that she was sincere. Alniss, out of loyalty towards Silrin, would be more likely to hold her at an arm's length, especially if she thought that Carla's well being was at risk. Do you know if Kalran read the letter beforehand? If so, she might have been able to reassure Carla that there was nothing awful in it. Still, I can understand her respect for Carla's privacy.

I'm hoping the two get to meet soon! It would probably be best to be somewhere public, with Alniss and the others there as potential backup. Not that Carla would need it! Add more soon!
10/14/2018 c24 5YPM-33-KI
That was certainly a heavy chapter to read! I mean that in a good way, mind. It was great to see Carla and Kalran becoming closer, even with the catalyst for that being something so horrible. It’s also great to see Carla beginning to take the initiative more without feeling quite so dependent on Alniss, even though she clearly still has quite some way to go in that regard.

Making yeerks become nothlits really wasn’t the perfect solution, was it? It’s easy to see how non-yeerks would see it as a good thing for yeerks, and it’s also easy to imagine that many yeerks would initially be grateful to have eyes and limbs of their own. Somehow though, I highly doubt that Kalran is the only yeerk who now misses their original body.

I get the impression Carla will be meeting Elsa soon? Whether or not that’s the case, I eagerly look forward to the next chapter!
10/14/2018 c24 4RDavidson
Please go see her!
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