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for A Paladin Lost in the Forest

5/8/2020 c4 CarnelianWing
Not gonna lie, I was close to tears by the end of this story. XD

The plot felt a little rushed to me, but there was a lot of cover so I can understand the need to get through the set-up quickly in order to get to the meat of the narrative. Even so, I think the story could've fared better with you taking your time a little more, to let it breathe a bit. I still enjoyed reading this, but not as much as your past chapters. I also felt that the previous chapter you wrote before this one was a bit rushed-through. The first two chapters had excellent pacing, you took your time to describe the environment, situation, and the feelings of the characters. That meant they were a lot longer, sure, but more satisfying to read through. I hope that's not too harsh a criticism, you're doing a good job.

The story for this chapter was very interesting indeed; I wasn't expecting you to add demons and angels into this universe. And Pidge...oh god, poor Pidge. It was actually hard for me to read this in some parts, but I'm glad she was okay by the end. Poor Lance as well; dude loses his girlfriend and his dear friend, and then suffers at the hands of a demon and gets dragged to Hell. LANCE NO. PIDGE NO. AAAAHHHHH

I'm also really curious about the timeline of this chapter. How long had the war been over when Pidge finally decided to try and bring Allura back? And then how long was Pidge gone for? You wrote that Lance waited for her for a YEAR (although I'm assuming you meant "searched"), but was it longer than that?

And I know that the ending is meant to be open to interpretation, but when Pidge appeared before Lance, my first thought was that Pidge lived a full life, died, and then broke her way into Hell to rescue Lance's soul. Which would mean that Lance spent YEARS trapped in that place. But there's no way that Pidge would wait THAT long to save Lance, so I'm just going to pretend that Pidge broke into Hell a few months after Lance was taken (cause this is Pidge we're talking about, course she'd be smart enough to do that) and saved him herself. Cause that is the far more happier ending and it soothes my soul. :3

Good luck with your future work, looking forward to whatever you decide to write next!
4/13/2020 c3 CarnelianWing
Glad to see you back! I wasn't expecting a new chapter right on Easter morning, but it was a pleasant surprise to wake up to.

I really enjoyed this chapter. There was so much great Pidge whump and you did a good job writing the villain of the story. A creepy and deranged mad scientist who is obsessed with Pidge and wants to use her intelligence to aid the Galra Empire is an excellent character to have written for this. The part with the Think Tank was really intense; good thing Keith came when he did, I hate to think of the pain Pidge would've gone through if she'd been forced to stay in there for a prolonged period of time. And thank you for writing my prompt, I like the direction you took with it. :)

I like how you describe the planet in the beginning, and you succeeded in making the scene where Pidge discovers the rebel's body appropriately horrifying. I do wish we got some more answers about the wolves; like, why are they working for Fahyr? Is Fahyr controlling them? Are they partly technological, or completely technological, and that's why Fahyr can command them, or are they biological creatures? Why didn't the wolf kill Pidge and instead brought her to Fahyr? Did it know that Fahyr wanted her? There's a lot of unanswered questions there, and I do wish there was a bit more insight on them because the wolf plays a pretty important role in capturing Pidge in the first place, and its presence in the story is never explained. Maybe I'm being a bit nitpicky here, but that being said, I still really enjoyed the chapter.

And I think it's cool that you're considering a multi-chaptered fic! Would it be a Voltron fic, or something different?

Anyway, keep up the great work! Looking forward to whatever you write next!
3/1/2020 c2 CarnelianWing
Wow, there was a LOT that happened in this chapter, and a lot to go over. Poor Pidge. Poor Sam and Matt as well. I was already sad when Matt didn't survive in this AU, and I was honestly expecting that Pidge was going to save her father; it felt right that she would do so after failing to save her brother. And then as I was reading the scene where Pidge didn't know what to do as Ezor was powering up the gun, I realized you were going to kill Sam as well. And his death was just as heartbreaking as I knew it would be.

It's awful and so tragic, but given the events leading up to the scene, I understand why you went this route. Pidge is smart and prides her logic, but when it comes to her family, she can absolutely be irrational. Nothing is more important to her than them. Of course she decided to drug her friends and hand over Lotor herself. Of course she went alone and didn't even consider what a terrible idea that was. Of course everything backfired on her in the worst way possible, because she acted so recklessly and selfishly. She still didn't deserve to watch her father get his guts blown out right in front of her, but her choices led to that moment. That's going to be a very hard thing for her to live with, along with everything else that happened afterward.

Also, I'm beginning to realize that you and I may have pretty different definitions of what counts as "dark". When you gave the warning at the beginning that this chapter would feature "very dark torture", I actually expected the torture to be so much worse than it actually was. Don't get me wrong, it was still really violent torture; the way you described Pidge's skin "bubbling" as she was electrocuted made my skin crawl. But I have read much, much worse during the time I've been in this fandom, and honestly, I'm kind of glad that you didn't take it farther than you needed to. Especially considering Pidge already had to deal with losing her father and brother and handing over Lotor to his death. I don't know what to expect moving forward with these short stories, but I'm starting to get a sense of your style and how far you're willing to take this stuff, so now I feel more prepared for whatever it is you're going to write next.

One of my favourite parts of this chapter was the scene where the Druid combs through Pidge's mind and Pidge basically relives every single one of her most drastic failures and mistakes. She left her mother without a word, was too late to save her brother, and then was the catalyst for her father's execution. Like...ouch. Talk about rubbing salt in an already gaping, bleeding wound.

But man...the scene where Pidge turns on Zarkon rather than killing Lotor and actually succeeds in killing the Emperor...that was amazing to read through. I think that was the perfect climax to this story. Because in the end, even if Pidge could have made better decisions that would have saved her father, his and Matt's death were all Zarkon's fault. Pidge being the one to end him was so satisfying to read, and it also brings the show back around to where it was mid-Season 5. Except this time Pidge is physically, mentally and emotionally scarred and didn't leave her room for six months. Also things are going to be very awkward between her and Lotor for a good long while.

If there is one criticism that I have for the chapter, I think the "epilogue" was a bit rushed? I just think you should have spent a little more time describing Pidge's grief. Obviously losing both her brother and father and failing to save them would absolutely destroy her. I think refusing to leave her room for six months does get that across somewhat. But then the epilogue immediately segues into her healing and growth, and there's nothing wrong with that, I'm happy that she was eventually able to move on and feel better, but it also unintentionally comes across as a little cheesy. That's just my opinion, the rest of the story was fantastic. But I do think it kind of began to lose steam closer to the end of the chapter.

Wow, this has been a long review, but I have one thing I want to ask. You said that you won't post the next chapter until "Lent" was over, and that for Lent you have "given up on fanfiction". I admit I'm a bit confused, since I don't know what "Lent" is. Do you think it would be alright for you to explain to me what that's all about?
2/23/2020 c1 Hiiiiii
Wow! Great Chapter! It was very well written and I loved all the action that was going on. Pidge is definitely not the weakest link! Katie is one of the strongest members. They are all strong and important! But seriously,amazing chapter and can't wait for the next one. Pleaseeeeeeee Update Soon!
Have a great day!
2/16/2020 c1 CarnelianWing
This was a fantastic first chapter.

The uncertainty of whether or not Pidge (and the other Paladins) would live through this made the story difficult to read through at times, but the pay-off was so worth it. I choose to believe that Pidge lives, and she will be back to her butt-kicking self in no time, permanent scar or no. :)

Your writing is lovely; the way you describe things is so visceral that I could easily picture everything that was happening in my mind as I was reading, from Pidge's fear and anguish to the gloomy background of the drenched forest that makes up the narrative. I like how there were so many moments where everything could've gone to shit, but everyone (minus the mercenaries) made it out okay anyway - or mostly okay. I know that not every short story in this collection will grant me a happy ending, so I will enjoy it while I can.

Despite how dark this was, I really enjoyed reading it. There really isn't enough Pidge angst in this fandom - it's always about Lance. XD (Don't get me wrong, I like Lance too, but the other Paladins need a spotlight in whump territory too!) I'm already looking forward to the next chapter. If you are taking requests, it just so happens that one of my favourite angst prompts is torture, so perhaps that could be a plot in your next short story? But...perhaps don't have Pidge die from the experience? At least this time. XD That small thing would make me pretty happy, I'm just saying.

Great work with this, it was so good. Looking forward to whatever you put out next!

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