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for What Could've Been

9/8/2023 c15 johnsmith7171996
Damn so close I just want to get to the part when they have marron
6/21/2023 c15 3SuperSimpleStuff
My friend!
Thia chapter encompassed so many important moments and even referenced other beloved works of yours.
With the acknowledgment of the importance of Krillin in F18's soul (rejection or not) and in P18's life, it's like the story reached a turn.
Krillin is there and he's an agent of change, in ways vastly different between the two timelines. Thanks to him things are pivoting, but it's still up to the twins to figure it all out.
I loved the circular structure of the chapter, how you didn't forget about anything and how you found a place for many key moments. It's hard to develop such chapters because they're dense and long.
However it didn't feel "long" to me as a reader, every scene had a purpose.
You're great at creating a balanced response from your readers toward the FTwins.
Of course I sighed for F18 and her rejection (her rage, her pain, her seeing her reflection and brutally being confronted with her identity as murderess, plastered right on her face. It scared Krillin and that she didn't even knew she was doing it).
I sighed at F17's frustration, too, as he feels the pain of the only being he's ever loved (yet. As a cyborg) and his urge to act on it and solve it, but he can't.
In spite of this, I can't help thinking their retribution is just.
I love how you made it apparent they still have a long way to go toward regaining their humanity.
I also found this "setback" very realistic: how many times real people think they overcame and obstacle, only to be faced straight away with another wall?
All I could honestly think was "c'est la vie", and I'd say this otherworldly ordeal the FTwins are experiencing is pretty...human.
And on this note, I love how late in the chapter F18 muses on the sentiments of envy and empathy being both extremely human. This abitily of reflection is, too.

King Kai is patient and laid-back
I never feel sadism from him, even when he painfully had to restrain F17.
If Krillin represents change, he stands for order.
His stating they don't need to lose out of sight their goal to integrate human sentiments, and of the hurdles they still have to jump to get there, felt necessary.
It felt like he's coaching them back into focus when their emotions dominate them. And there's somw subtle irony at their completely inhuman murderous instinct showing, again, because of sucha human thing as emotions.

Krillin is always tactful. Even in his rejection.
He doesn't "syphon plasure out of pain" (I loved this image) and his meditation image feels like he needs to reset after so much negativity. Because it's not in his nature even if he doesn't shy away from a fight.

Balancing the harrowing rejection scene, we have Garnet and Jade. I enjoyed their moments with PTwins, vibrant and full of warmth, even if you're describing a robbery I guess there's honour among these thieves.
All the physical touch going on here drives home how safe PTwins are and are perceived compared to the Future counterparts.
A small critique now! I found the epithets you used to describe Jade and Garnet a bit over-used at times. Even if I understand it's fun to use them and you wanted to avoid repeating the names, it felt like they made some sentences a bit clunky.
Maybe it's just my impression!

Then we have some lovely "bts of LDC": the laborious prepararions for P18 and Krillin's first date, the twins' and the siblings' thoughts on calling Krillin on the phone (it makes one say "aahhh, that'swhy they exchanged letters!"), all mentioned from a different angle: I was happy to reread it but it also felt fresh
You know that I loved big sis really wanting (and valuing) lil bro'a opinion, demanding more effort from him? And that I was also thinking "maybe she's too blue"? (Great minds think alike: you, my man 17, me)
Krillin is simply THE MAN. Respectful and devoted above anyrhing else.
If all mob bosses werw Krillin!
The tenderness of the budding K18 love was a beautiful way to finish the scene.

I mentioned before how difficult a chapter this abundant can be tricky and even if everything is in place (you mentioned all the inneworkings: plot, characterisation, interactions) I feel like some parts can use a bit more showing and less telling.
For example, in some passages of the rejection and Jade-Garnet scenes I felt like you could have pushed the vividness of their emotions further instead of stating them.
Maybe I'm in no position to say this, as you were the one who helped me improve my show/tell and nailing it is still beyond me sometimes. I can't help feeling you can (you have the skill and the love for the characters) take the impressive work you already did to the next level.
With time and patience and your own inspiration.
I know this because I know how strong I felt with your previous chapters.
And you did it here too, just more in bits than all along (images like F18's "mountainous regret": it's stunning. It's so vivid and immediate)
I hope my review and opinions made sense and can be useful to you!
I took the time to read the chapter more than once and it was time well spent.

Thank you for the chapter!

SSS
6/14/2023 c14 Tempeix
I write it with google translation because I am French but your story is amazing and brilliant and very well written and I wish with all my heart that you will continue it until the end
6/14/2023 c15 6Literal Winter
Good work on this chapter man, it's an achievement to power through your writer's block like this and get a chapter finished so well done!

The chapter's title pretty much sums up this piece of your story and it was certainly interesting to see that the future Androids still revert to their darker nature when things don't go their way, which I believe is good characterization as it shows just how vindictive and petty they can be, a trait that was evident in their personalities whilst they were alive.

It's also good that there are still elements of their progression in place as well, such as Eighteen having inner conflict with how she feels vs what she knows is the truth, the instance where she is furious at Krillin being a prime example since she knows that he is not in the wrong.

The present timeline story unfolding is nice and provides a good contrast between the negativity of the future Androids compared to their much more positive present counterparts. One of the interesting points here was that the future Androids are finally starting to accept the stark difference between the two Android pairs, which sets them up for further development.

Good job anyways man, hope your burnout and writer's block get better, but do rest up and take your time!
6/11/2023 c15 2sourcandygaga
Oh wow this was an awesome chapter. I really think it was well done. I can definitely understand future 18’s jealousy but yeah I didn’t expect the future cyborg’s display some of their old habits/traits because i genuinely like king kai i thought they had already accepted that not everything always goes their way but at the same time i do understand the jealousy future 18 has. I can’t wait for the date chapter and i wonder what would happen in that date chapter and i wonder how well future 18 will ne able to handle seeing her counterpart going on a date with krillin and i also wonder I understand why future krillin rejected future 18 I wonder how the gears will shift between future 18 and future krillin in the future
4/23/2023 c14 8JogreMyOgre
Late review, so much of what I feel has already been said. Regardless, I want to talk about it. I want to cover my thoughts on the whole arc that spans from the end of the Cell Games to confronting Krillin. This part really touched on something missing from canon in a really meaningful way. The exploration of what kind of struggles 17 and 18 would have in the world without human connections, a home, or even a proper identity.

I never imagined how much they would have to go through in these early stages after Cell, and this captures it spectacularly. It really gives the whole story before this point more meaning. Even though their identities have been lost and given super powered bodies, their struggles remain the same. Outcasts.

Then what you did with Krillin was really impactful. He's not just some hookup, he's fundamentally important to both of their lives. He's like the force they always needed, a person who really sees them as people rather than monsters/undesirables/criminals, something very few people ever did, even before they were androids.

Having 18 confront Future Krillin after witnessing him change their other selves lives was the most emotional part of this story for me. That heartbreaking moment where you remember what the story is called, remembering that 18's reality isn't her other self's, that she's someone who abandoned her humanity and died, only to discover what she lost in the afterlife. That was a gut punch. It made me realize that the androids aren't the only ones effected by the knowledge of what they were in another world, that Krillin had been suffering with that for longer than they have. For them to come to him with the naivety of thinking that he'd accept them as if they were the androids they could have been, that must have been painful for him. It begs the question of whether or not they really are different people or not. I knew this story was tragic, but this really hit me hard.

Thanks for all your work on this.
2/28/2023 c14 3SuperSimpleStuff
My friend,

Let me congratulate you for this rich, vast, complex, keystone chapter. I can imagine the depth of thought and the work that went into unpacking every scene in all their emotion and complexity of interactions.
Before commenting in detail let me say something that overarches every part of this chapter: your usage of dialogue (internal and direct), and the depictionprogression of every character interaction was masterful.
You really went all out on each and every element that is your strength, from the description of colours to a skilful usage of your themes.
I am impressed, proud of you knowing how much you care about the story and the characters (I hope it just doesn’t read like excessive praise).

Something I really enjoyed is how you built suspense from the get go, through Tien’s skepticism (more his own than Yamcha’s, because the latter tends to be more…all bark and no bite. But you added the badass and dignified detail of his fingers curved like a wolf’s fangs and didn’t make him a meme, something even I am guilty of…)
For how painful to read it is it only makes sense the two Z Fighters assume the worst of the twins. Again, Tien especially, and his distrust being IC it has some weight
(, the 3-eye roll, “robots” and “mr” robot were pretty funny; and I found it interesting how they don’t correct him “cyborgs!” straight away, as the priority is not that for now).
In all this…Eighteen chooses to remember that Tien warded off SP Cell…
Krillin immediately jumping to the twins' defence is just as IC and heartwarming as it should be, and his pure radiant ki is a testament to the purity of his soul.
You know what struck me the most in this opening scene tho?
The twins acknowledging the Z Fighters' emotiona.
They're not only developing their own conscience but they're also becoming more receptive and empathetic.
An image you skilfully slipped to back this up is when Eighteen blinks red and she's AT RISK of being perceived as predatory, when in reality she's worried for herself and her brother (who is blinking red out of self-defence, instead).
I never thought deeply about this, but it makes their journey more poignant. After all it's true that you can understand others better when you first understand yourself, you know what I mean? Especially two introverted people like the twins, everything needs to fall into place within themselves before it does in the world.
The increased awareness P-Eighteen has of herself now makes her say "I know I won't, I can't!' (hurt anyone).
And I believe her.
Becasue you built up her amd Seventeen's trauma in a way so logical and also emotional that makes your reader think "why would anyone want to go back to that? Gero, Cell,..."
And it's believable because the Present Twins are actually non-murderers.
I love how Krillin brings the focus back to this!
No human xasualties, in spite of their targeting system going bananas because of that despicable man…

With Seventeen, the awareness/empathy manifests with him musing on how the Z Fighters assuming the worst of them isn't preposterous, he's not ignoring nor denying what he knows he (they) did as Future selves.
There's other lovely images in this first scene,
-Seventeen's "searing gaze" VS Eighteen's "wide, terrified eyes".
-two colours opposite in temperature, "arctic blue" and the blinking red coexisting in Seventeen's eyes
-"Muscle-bound" Z Fighters VS a "deceptively slender" cyborg
-That spark if connection between velvety chocolate and crystal water eyes

The twins almost utter Krillin's name but refrain at the last moment like it was a spell.
Only the midget man can really come to terms with them. Get through to them.

I also appreciated the clarifications/deeper dive in the nightmares as the remnants of Gero's control, and the mentioning of the possibility of them losing control as still being real in spite of their will of harming no one.
Also, Vegeta. Appreciated that you mentioned him.

I smiled at Eighteen putting a bump on her brother's head, is a classic anime gag with an old-school charm.

Since I never try to guess what you have in store, because I like being surprised, I got excited at the mention of the twins being brought to Bulma's, of the Dragon Balls.
Anytjing could have happened here, my reader's senses were all inflated to the maximum.
I would have enjoyed whatever route you chose. But let me say that I greatly appreciated that you chose something off the beaten path.
And you did it in a way that made Krillin shine.
Meditation reads like less of a shortcut and more of that nitty-gritty pure hard work to be done methodically and well. A cultured monk is familiar with this degree of discipline, but the cyborgs at this stage, still don't feel like beings of patience
Adding a spark of meditation having magic properties just makes it more coherent with the verse

I apprexiated the thoughts of the twins on this debate, like not really being into having to be analysed by Bulma, all of their "enemies' actually being good people.
Yes, the helping hand is mostly Krillin here but Tien and Yamcha are in this too, the sense I get is "a solution to this nightmares problem HAS to be found. Everybody is pitching in, a way or the other."
Then you slipped in a fitting, satisfactory description of Eighteen's demeanour, "aloof playfulness" (/ Seventeen's "pureblood" one).
And a most subtle K18 allusion, blushing
I love this slow burn
Krillin being extra wholesome as he states that he can help them even though he knows he can't comprehend the full range of their suffering
More lovely images depicting the breathing of the trio as they meditate, of the very real infectiousness of the need for peace and the mundane, of Seventeen doing the most adoravle things like coma-ing (he always takes Eighteen's funny reaction to further heigths) and whistling while meditating.

All of this woven into the main plot, with the added perspective of their Future selves, and the reminder of King Kai bring there.
You wove the two plots all along and it could either read as it read and leave a readee impressed or be a huge mess.
Future Seventeen being worried about his Present self.
No need, he's laid back but still fearsome
(one of the things I love the most about jim to this day).
At the end of the meditation, that simple thank you by Eighteen works well, just as her potential being catatonic and her being lowkey about herself crushing -but not denying it
Future Eighteen doing those small commenrs of encouragement to Present reads like a sassy loving big sister.

I found the image of "frosty moon" and of the twins' sleeping and guarding patterns endearing and pertinent.
Meditation held the nigjtmares at bay for now!
About this, I'm glad they kept practising it all along the period of time this chapter covered, cause it must take a while to master and cause it's not a band aid. It's for the long term.

The combo of the images of Eighteen's factual beauty and her snoring, the pool of drool ahahahahaha I love this. I love when you have an extremely attractive character in your hands and they're made "flawed" like this.
Obviously it works with characters of every physical appearance but it's a sharper contrast with the beautiful ones, imho.

When Seventeen asks if she and Krillin shared some contact…I think he's being empathetic and mature toward his sister's crush.
Both Presemt and Future Seventeens.
It's a reaction that stems from true love. He wouldn't truly love his sister if he wasn't able to see how good Krillin is for her.

Krillin is both the helping hand and a symbol of their vulnerability
In different ways
This is the most powerful message you shared through him.

More LDC references with the eagles and the shack. This is how they got their first home…
The segment depicting their decision of making that old shack their home, of them remodelling and having all those IC clothes-and-car made and attempting to recognise birds in the forest (like LDC Seventeen studying for his ranger application) had me think 'This is the mundane they deserve'. To, yes, shake off Gero's influence while absorbing their powers into their identity.
This is food for thought for the Future twins.

And tell me, when they see the eagle they don't know what it ia, but then Eighteen calls is "eagle". Is this notion part of the pre-packed knowledge they hold?

I really went "haha" with the twins being naughty Santa Clauses stealing furniture from tje mall. With little children , they airlifted bags of presents back home, garnering curious stares from good boys and girls of North City in the process.

I couldn't NOT react to the refurbished cabin being called "product of their labour".
It sounds so much like "labours of love"...

When all the princess room and man cave are done it's appetizing to toast even for me the reader, so infectious is the good mood the Present Twins share.
Ok, Seventeen spurs her, but that spontaneous KRILLIN coming out of the depths of Eighteen's soul is all her.
All the pent-up crush feelings.
Which affect Future Eighteen as well, motivate her to claim for herself the wholesomeness and peace she happily witnessed blooming within her counterpart, one ocean-blue thawing gaze at a time.
FSeventeen shows a profound understanding of his sister when he witness her outburst and comprehends she's angry at herself.
When they search for Krillin on King Kai's planet
If was fun to read the twins giving chase with a different blinking red and its diagrams, and then the warmth of their targeting systems not being used out of ill will
a sort of game of hide and seek for cyborgs!
The ending ties to the beginning with the twins passing by some Z fighters, Goku cheerful and Goham distrustful (if not he…)
And the notion, coming back again, of the Future Twins' demise being self-made even if it was carried out by Future Trunks
(we are the ones who turned them against us…)
And then it hurt.
Seventeen's encouragement, F-Eighteen's pure joy at the sight of Krillin (who, with hindsight, didn't want to be found…), she being "more emotional than ever'.
You give this exceptional description just before dropping the hammer of Krillin merting her witj heartbreak.
His refusal makes total sense, and it's clearly not out of malice but out of…guess what…What could have been.
With the title resonating with this ending, I'm once again coming to terms to what a masterpiece you've written.
Krillin's regret makes him strong. Because he's not a doormat, and what Future Eighteen has done can't be erased now, with jer being sincerely emotional.
This chapter shows both how far they've come, and how long of a road still awaits them before they can maaaaybe, even, hypothethically have a chance for redemption.
If one bad act doesn't overshadow a thousand acrs of good, well, their (FTwins) recent increase in empathy doesn't grant them instant rwdemption

And no matter how it hurts to read, I stand by you as an author and I wouldn't have it a different way.
Just one thing, if I may ask, just to make sure nothing in this great chapter goes misunderstood: whay did Krillin mean with
"Your plan for us, how could I ever go alone with it!"
(I apologise if it's not immediately clear for me. And another bit that wasn't fully clear was when, in the meditation scene, Krillin says "that mad man was bear the blame!"
It's probably a typo
I also apologise if the sole composition of this…essay?
Took longer than I intended. But here I am.
I hope I could link together all my thoughts because tje complexity of the chapter itself made it for a true analysis which I hope I could deliver.

Be proud of you, and…now rest and reap the fruits of your labour!
SSS
2/27/2023 c14 6Literal Winter
Good chapter man, I really liked how you handled the confrontation between the Present Androids and the Z Fighters especially, there was some good tension and conflict there which made for an engaging read.

I really like how you portray Yamcha and Tien, there presence in the story is well placed as they provide a solid counterpoint to the twins with Krillin acting as the mediator in-between the two groups. Krillin's role is also very well done and I believe that you really allowed him to shine in a way that highlighted his understanding and good nature, giving him the control he needed to help resolve the problem at hand. His teaching of meditation to the twins was great as well, and I really liked the K18 nods you put throughout as well.

The next part with the Present twins finding and making the cabin their home was nice as well, and them finally being able to live stress free and simply sleep in their own home was touching and great to see their well earned progression. It was also cool that you are consistent with your themes, such as that of Sixteen, nature and birds being in your story, not to mention I have sneaking suspicion of what type of flightless bird you described as well.

The ending with F18 tracking down Krillin to confront him was an exciting way to set up for the next chapter, I am interested to see how the rest of their interaction goes in the next one!

Take as much of a break as you need man, you've put in some good work here!
2/27/2023 c14 2sourcandygaga
OMG this chapter is awesome wow. I been waiting anxiously for this chapter. I’n glad krillin was able to help the present cyborgs get over their nightmares. Wow. So Future 18 and Future Krillin finally meet again. I hope you would be able to figure out how to proceed but take all the time you need i loved this chapter and looking forward to the next one
2/13/2023 c13 3SuperSimpleStuff
Chapter 13 already!

The title really brings in the wind of change, it made me feel positive the twins would be alright, not because a new beginning equals easy life, but because they can HAVE it
After they thought everything would be over for them
As a K18 bit underlines, Krillin gave this chance to them

I like how in these last chapters the blinking red of their eyes makes more and more way to blinking yellow as they wonder, as they want to trace themselves back, understand
I love that PSeventeen is daring, experimental, thinks outside of the box. Sometimes one gotta take a risk and he's not afraid of venturing in North City, in the end it can't get much worse, and in that timeline they have no intention of bringing Armageddon anyway

The theme of their escape and some of the most painful memories is leading this chapter. You can come back only if you went away and a new beginning starts in the place they left.
There's an image I really love here, with them "infiltrating" the city: their eyes glowing in the dark.
It should look menacing but you managed to make it look beautiful
What came across Ftwins watching Ptwins set foot in North City again is a sense of...acceptance.
They blame themselves for what they have done but not breaking their own heart, this time.
When Eighteen tells P-Eighteen she can't blame her..I'm proud because they suffered enough.

Your trademark switch from anything "God" to "Sixteen' is a comforting presence, something I closely associate to your style and I thoroughly enjoy reading it.

When Eighteen is more mature she's not the twin anymore but 'elder sister', nice detail, reinforced by her calling Seventeen "baby bro" (and then he calls himself big bro!)
"Polaris park", in North city (like north star?)
This time they have fun in a park without taking lives
The thoughts about their house...I'm also sad it's not there anymore.
It feels like the new one which was built there lacks warmth

I'm curious about the thought you breached when they mused about their old house: blowing the city upeasy way out
They mean...To avoid coping with whatever?

Car and clothes shopping...
Him don't mind clothes even if they're literally in tatters!
"Dress me up", Seventeen edition, like a paper doll

It was quite adorable

Then we have Garnet and Jade, a shadown from the past even if the twins have just met them.
"If...if he ever makes it out...if this brother sister team makes it out..."
The hurt from almost getting shot on their nightly store raid with Coral and the others, which you also reference in this chapter.
Ah, and them recalling how they smashed the face of the guy who shot coral...I rejoiced too. I really can't bring myself to not to, even if Future twins are now revolted by the memory.

Garnet and Jade continue what Gohan had started in ch 11: the twins seeing their childhood and formative years

"Yes way little man"
That Seventeen sass.

The little k18 winks, it will all come together like a puzzle when Eighteen decides what she'll decide (and I'm super curious after knowing the ending of the chaoter)

I'm so happy Present Twins are appreciated, and this paves the way to all the love they'll give and receive. The path they took really is different from that taken by their doppelgangers now in the afterlife
And they're loved in a setting they didn't show themselves as meek...they sent those thugs away in a breath.
Jade blushing, eh, what can I say? You knew I had to mention it, didn't you...

It's curious Garnet is not the one with red hair!
Ms Poule, I remembered her straight away as the orphanage was mentioned
She having their photo, like she never forgets any kids in her care
Curious she mentions doppelgangers...what does she mean?
Anyway this scene is a nice way to tie to Lapis and Lazuli!
Even if comes with the cost of Seventeen facing a crisis, unleashing his energy, with his angst.
I was expecting it could happen, put so much in contact with emotional intensity, but I didn't expect Jade and Garnet mentioning Lapis and Lazuli, and it being because of that
It's sweet they're remembered and loved, and I wasn't really worried about Jade and Garnet getting hurt, maybe because one of the twins was still in control.
But the kind of crisis Seventeen is having here...
The way Eighteen whisks him away in strain shows how much grit she has to put into containing him and drag him to safety.
Grit, and love.
I love the expression "sibling care" even if Seventeen can't get himself calmed down.

What he says, not being in control of his targeting system, made me have a creepy hypothesis: what if Gero had directed his targeting system toward himself at the mentioning of his name?
The way you describe his screams and the veins bulging under the skin sounds like torture, like he's being his own victim.
Dang it was painful to read, it was like the pain was driving him crazy...at the point of tearing at his own skin
But it's heartbreaking in a positive sense that Eighteen's voice and hold get to him through all this inhuman suffering
It's like she lies at the very core of his being
Them hilding hands is the purest symbol of their bond, and I especially loved the moment when you described it to be an instinct, when Cell took Seventeen from her and she felt incomplete turning to take his hand, and not finding it...
When I read about the explosion erupting from Seventeen I definitely thought Gero rigged him to self destruct. Maybe the name Lapis really was a trigger to his very systems, as Krillin has already wished the bomb to be removed.
I got the sense of magnitude of all their power, and Eighteen clearly demonstated a more tactical mind in erecting a barrier with an escape hole.

It's like they (he) survived self-destruction
Their Future selves reaction is my breath of relief. They reeeally look like they're in a movie theatre!

Tien, Yamcha and KRILLIN appearing at the end was a surprise!
And I also want to tell them "nooooooooo please don't misunderstand!"

Now I'm left with the curiosity about what P-Eighteen will do when seeing Krillin again
Them meeting again like this is a turn I didn't see clming, and I love surprises.

Another solid chapter I enjoyed, especially the nods to the Lapis and Lazuli flashback chapters earlier in the story.

If I were to point out anything...in the first paragraph you said "nostalgia and pain".
Isn't pain already a key component to nostalgia? See I have to squint!

Regarding your notes, I'm glad to know you to be in a different place a month later.

Stay always strong

SSS
2/8/2023 c12 SuperSimpleStuff
My friend,

You know how I loved your desfriptions of the sky (and nature) in LDC, and here, with Eighteen being an aerial ice princess, in a sea of cotton, made me think of those descriptions!

And I like how you make new questions arise in my mind with every chapter.
I had assumed the Future twins were aware of the humanity in their behaviour but then you say
"near human behavior"
After they displayed full human behaviours last chapter..it makes me think they weren't fully conscious of them and I just enjoy seeing things from a different perspective.

Now it's time for Present Eighteen to find somewhere to be, someone maybe?
I was hoping she either went back to Krillin or to find Seventeen and hurray, she found Seventeen
Alive and well, my dear boy is...
I love the hug, almost a bear hug she gives him
Eighteen can look like a bear in demeanour

" mucus stained shirt"
Another human detail that thaws her a bit!

Just like
"ocean blue orbs undergoing a wide spectrum of colors from boiling hot to monochrome"
Such a wide range, and ice is not mentioned. Because warmth prevails.

"(...) is it a bald monk roughly a head shorter than you? (...) Does his name start with K?"
Seventeen you naughty!
It's his lifeblood to tease his blood
And oh how she falls for the taunts...he must be so satisfied
(and she goes "Kril...that monk", she needs to save face!)

I was super curious to know where they'd go, now that Eighteen has established she's not ready yet to meet THAT MONK again.
When Seventeen whistles, we know eberything os back on the good track.
Sixteen becoming part of a purpose, telling them to live the best life they can.

"(...) a yawn sandwiched between his words."
I love this turn of phrase.
A creative way to express Seventeen's tiredness and boredom.
I love the way you depict him so faithfully, even his speech is endearing
("Ya know")

So is hers..
"Right, how about no?"
My inner Seventeen going "ahh cmon let's not take things so seriouslyyy"

When you mentioned the house and the looks of the green surroundings a light went on in my head...please...let it be their childhood home...more for their Future selves' closure than anything.. please...the respect they have for the door arising from deep within their past, their subconscious, ahhh
It wasn't but I truly thought it could be

"Present Seventeen (...) yanked out the doorknob and lock together. "Oops." He faked a gasp (...)'
This is so Seventeen. A good laugh it was

Them getting acquainted with a TV set
Sometimes I wondered, just for giggles, whether they'd be well-versed in mechanical devices but it would be silly. I still laugh at this tho.
A real surprise was the foreshadowing of MIRs and Monster Island!
It surprised me and it's lovely, warm, and pertinent to the plot...
The fact that is on channel 16 almost spells destiny...a clever choice from you
You had me think until the last moment they were in their home...
You depicted well the Future versions knowing, and the Present not knowing, the former feeling the melancholy for that the latter might feel without being able to piece together
Eighteen committing grand theft fur! Because Eighteen is still Eighteen
And Seventeen mentioning cave paintings was hilarious.

"Not bad for your first day without Goku to hunt, you two are...stronger than we are..."
A strong human part makes superfighters and heroes even more human
So I believe those are stronger, even if all they went through might just have made them as strong as their Present version

Their reaction to the haystacks! He, a happy child, she, our ice queen!

"Why don't we sleep separately tonight?"
After saying they weren't ready to separate but this can be a step toward the taking of different paths?

Eighteen being sorry about the absorption/devouring business
It's a sensitive topic for me too, you know that. She must have been horrified and...Seventeen is not judging her

"(...) his eyes blinking bloody red through shut eyelids (...)"
And Eighteen habing nightmares too.
Both of them
It hurts to see the extent of their trauma, to see them suffer like that.
But it's realistic and...very much human.
It gives the title to the otherwise serene chapter.

"I won't leave you I promise"
"Your sister needs you"
It hurts. But it's rewarding and relieving to see that nothing can ever sever their love

And oh, the barn...
It reminds me of images of their rampage, both in your fic and in Canon, but they're not cackling and relishing it.

"(...)flame hissed and crackled like tentacles (...)"
Very visual

The childish happy go lucky attitude as a mask.
Facts, my friend, facts.
So many people do it and it cements even more how human they are, clinging to their coping mechanisms.
The quietly strong "I won't let you hurt me or the people I love" Eighteen defends herself with is a coping mechanism too
(Or her sarcasm, "will she be charged (...) if those idiotic brats were to blame for not quick enough on their feet")

The little crisis they experience, it's all more poignant after it looked like they were free. Yes, but they're no blank slate.
And this is a strength, even if it generates weakness. It's simply being human.
This really feels like a new way paved, a new element introduced, a new conflict for them to take on
To learn to live with their...conscience and past.

"The inseparable bond and tireless dedication filled the future cyborgs with pride and, in the most unsuspected twist neither could've foreseen when the viewing first started (...)"
This really sounds like a page is being turned.
With the rigut weight given to ordeals past and future, and present too
Everything counts.

...It felt like a violation of privacy the teens stumbling upon E having a nightmare...it saddened me a bit as a shy person
It didn't feel like the twins wouldn't be succesful in not hitting the brats, but I felt Seventeens physical struggle, it still read as a close call.

And as to keep another vital artery to this story pulsing with life, you end the chapter with another K18 spark

"I don't want to kill you again! Especially after what you've done for me...for us in this timeline!"

This is her mission!
And I'm so excited for her...for them.

Thank you for always surprising me with your interpretations and ideas!

I'm thoroughly enjoying this story, feeling different emotions.
I hope it was as satisfying to conceptualise and write as it is to read.

SSS
2/7/2023 c13 6Literal Winter
Good chapter, I'm glad you decided to go in depth with the Androids home city and their latent memories with this one, as it really sets them up to deal with their past and trauma from both the Present and Future twins perspectives.

I thought it was well done how you delved into the Future Androids experiences in the North City from their timeline and how they now come to regret their actions in destroying it, showing some nice development from them and almost completing their transition to seeing the light. The emotion displayed by both of the Android pairs really sold how much of an impact coming back here was for them both, and I like all of the references you made to earlier chapters with all of the Androids childhood moments.

I am interested in seeing how the next chapter will play out with the Z-Fighters and the Present Androids, and I'm looking forward to seeing how you do the interactions between Eighteen and Krillin. Nice work as always man!
2/7/2023 c11 3SuperSimpleStuff
The first image I loved in this chapter is the twins death-glaring each other and then bursting into laughter!
Such a genuine moment, it’s moments like this that help cement their innate complicity

On the other hand the imagery of their own carnage,...I love the diamond quality of their skin as described here, the Z-fighters’ knuckles cracking against it

Thank you for giving us Mr Satan, it's the fun that's needed to mitigate the angst
I love angs and I love hunour and when they work together the result is even more emotional
I won’t lie it’s entertaining to see them preoccupied for Mr Satan
"(...) maybe the creep just isn't interested in inflicting needless pain."

Eighteen being conscious makes me sad for her.
But I don’t know what drove Cell to spare Mr Satan, I certainly don’t think it’s mercy, I guess it’s more like contempt, like “he’s so freaking useless he doesn’t deserve to be killed by me”?
Perfect Cell is quietly full of himself, it can be the case…
(I read your hypothesis voiced through the twins after I has already jotted down this thought, and since we had a communion of thoughts, I didn’t delete it, so you see my thinking process)

The shift in their wish for the Z fighters, from killing them brutally to praying none of them suffers at the hands of Cell, and their awe before their power that has now surpassed theirs: they are united against a common enemy, just like before the latter absorbed each of them

Blowing sth off taking it to Hell, is this foreshadowing to what Goku will do when he teleports a bursting Cell to poor King Kai’s?

Cell’s regen being a bit gross, yes, but so is Piccolo’s.
Well all of Cell is a freaking grossfest…

"By kami, sure we've...well, murdered plenty of people, including children, but none of those parents ever volunteered their kids to be slaughtered…"

I LOVE THIS.
I’m not sure how to react to this, it sums up what I was talking about before, angsthumour
Idk my friend, this is a very clever line, it’s like the whole of what you’ve written in these 11 chapters could be resumed to this. Brilliant!

Gohan blew everyone’s mind away

I liked you describing each Z fighter with one physical trait, and then with each's reaction to Gohan vs Cell

"Sister dearest's feeling for Krillin is just like...like Coral…"
/
"And they didn't deserve it...none of us...at least us from that world deserved more…"
I link these two thoughts, even if I don’t know who uttered the second, cause they’re the same wishful thinking, mourning for what could have been, for what never happened.
For Coral…Seventeen,darling, you will find love. And Coral will be watching over you

"The uncanny resemblance between their innocent, younger selves and the suffering half-Saiyan had the duo began an unconcealed prayer"
I hadn't forgotten the chapters with Lapis, Lazuli and their loving parents, but thank you for remembering them here.

You made en efficient and clear summary of the cell games and I came full of curiosity at every Sixteen part!
"Please, protect the natures and animals that I loved."
This is phrased so simply but it’s powerful, I re-visualised Sixteen’s gentle smile and resolute gaze

I loved to read the twins’ thoughts over his death, and their cheering for Goha, but part of me wonders if this part deserves more…silence?
I wonder if taking the twins’ thoughts away from here and placing them maybe under, would add to their shock. I ‘m just thinking out loud, not suggesting that you change anything

Sorry but I laughed at “Only greeting him was a bloated, nearly unrecognizable Semi-Perfect Cell, whose already bulky limbs were enlarged to a whole new level. It would've been a joke worthy sight had it not been the future cyborg male's churning stomach,(...)”

It’s like a giant, slimy, bloated toad!
Yes, he’s revolting, and undignified, and the fact that there’s some relief going on in thi part of the chapter made me laugh.

"His shoulder length raven hair dripped across her arm. Like countless times before, their fingers were linked in an inseparable grip during times of utter crisis"
Two beautiful images.
One portrays Seventeen's hair as I imagine it and the other is a leitmotiv that fills my heart.
You know how I hoped that this Cell would spit up Seventeen as well, but well,...

They don't spite the blue, bastardous and obese tormentor as they watch uis demise, they're too tired,...
Tbh I also have the impulse to think why a god such like King Kai couldn't escape Cell, and it makes one realise Cell's power

Krillin picking up unconscious Eighteen is easily one of my favourite moments in the whole of Toriyama's work.
Thank you for putting the tenderness into her thoughts
"Lucky girl, you are a breathing, human girl to him.."
She is the love of is life…of course he isn't gonna pry with his hands while she can't oppose herself. He's no scum like Crimson or Gero (the reminder of Crimson makes Krillin even more marriage material haha)
"We should all give her a chance (...) Isn't that what this group is all about?"
It's true…they've all comes from paths of evil, more or less, well evil is a strong word for Krillin but yeah, they once were all each other's foes but they gace each other a chance, with the glue that keeps them together, Goku.

All along this chapter F-Eighteen saw and perceived the events through a Krillin lens, how these events impact Krillin, and she laments Trunks's death as the one who had rescued Krillin…
Embedding more K18 even where one wouldn't think of finding it.
They're my OG OTP but you're entirely dedicated to them and…wow, it hypes me very much.

Just like the future twins repeting of brutalising Gohan. I want to single this repentance out because they went out of their way to make Gohan's death especially gruesome, painful to watch…

I loved how Future Eighteen berates Present over her clumsiness in dealing with her emotions toward Krillin.
I guess Future Eighteen ended up having a better chance at developing her emotions qmwith your plot, but Present still needs to find her way through.
My heart melted with F Eighteen feeling rhe desire for a family! Maybe as a symbol of a chance to a normal life? Or maybe really, really…little Marron?
And I really enjoyed the bit of the bomb removal having visible physical effects, and F twins recognising which procedure it is.

"sky-filling" is really spot on to describe Shrenron! How couldn't I ever think about it?

The whole misunderstanding about Seventeen and Eighteen's bond is always fun to read, Canon, fanfic, in any way! Krillin was just too naive, but I find it realistic, ever, always, that he shows love for Wighteen through compassion for Seventeen

I mean in real life you accept and cherish those loved by the one you love.

And ending on Seventeen…
The best humour is always his, in the end.
Look at the little compilation of quotes I made:

"Damn straight sis, it's not like he's Krillin right?"
your favorite midget man.
“Copycat!”
"Sorry Mr. God!

Thank you Seventeen, heart emoji

And thank you, my friend, for showing your take. Creativity is not only about breaking ground, but also and mostly in retelling something fresh, in a personal way. Because in fiction nothing is virtually new..

Keep going strong!

Your fan, fellow author and friend

SSS
2/6/2023 c10 SuperSimpleStuff
My friend,

You transformed the Cell games and Perfect Cell into a chance to look into the twins' mind and a lot of special revelations have been made.
It's good to be back to the sensible way your write the beloved twins, let me tell you which is the first detail that I noticed with pleasure in your rendition of them here: so much frailty while they talk about destruction. The juxtaposition not only brings back memories of the first chapter where they were easy to label al complete monsters, but paves the way to the emotional developments you showed in the chapter.
And then Seventeen being boyish, and Eighteen "waiting patiently until he was done with his boyish fit."
she's back
And she wants to bridge herself back to normal by relying on her humour.

You pepper various chapter with the magic K18 ingredient and Future Eighteen eagerly trying to perceive Krillin's presence makes me think he is a bastion of safety and light among all thr darkness and uneasiness and terror she is experiencing with the vireing of what Cell did to Present her.

There's two images I love, one after the other.
"(...) A healthy blush surfaced on those frosty cheeks."
(Seventeen knowing right away what she was lying about)
And Eighteen growing more confident because of this and saying with resolution,

"Let's see what that obese asshole has in store for us."
It's like I saw her standing taller.
Carefree 17 is an unsung hero
No, well, quietly sung (by 18)

And then there was a fun bit!
Them being passive aggressive with King Kai (a.k.a. blue-skinned tormentor. The list of his epithets grows chapter by chapter, I like this kind of humour) and he defusing immediately their aggressivity.
Without even trying. He SERVES them the bloody tea.
He's a good host, and a host gotta do what a host gotta do...

When they cringe and shudder at the thought of having become food...
All along I want to tell them that Cell didn't actually eat them, that they are stored (that this was a lifeline for me while I watched the whole thing)...
But much like we fans, until Gohan gets 18 out she has no idea and so the terror and horror are unspeakable

"Disgusting, truly despicable...not even we would consume our victims in exchange for more power..."

It is truly horrific and a former murderous cyborg saying so is a testament to it.
The descriptions of cell through their eyes.
I always thought his perfect form looked awesome despite what he has done to my beloved twins

Eighteen getting emotional over Krillin endangering himself to cell
Thr K18 moments...there's always bits of tenderness that are a light in the night.
The moment of F-Eighteen shedding that single tear (later trivially "moisture", once she's composed again) is special not only because she cried for the first yime as a cyborg, but also because she cried for Krillin
This is love even if she doesn't know it

Meanwhile Carefree Seventeen thinking she's weirder and weirder

Vegeta's smackdown by Perfect Cell is so establishing for the latter's character. Eighteen "Who cares? It's not like he matters."
My queen roasting this prince in life and death alike.

Her tear is special, but it's not the only emotional development you expose the twins to in this chapter:
The change is...May I say complete? Almost?
No bloodlust, disgust at the sight of Cell massacring the people at the newstation, dread about the world ending at his hands.
Is it Cell...or is it them? The awareness of being part of him?
Of him using them, drawing from them?
Like them thinking of their other selves inside Cell, I also thought of them and their bodies each time I saw Cell.

Seeing their own faces on the faces of Cell's victims
I guess it's a manifestation of empathy.
Their empathy, atrophied, buried, but not dead.
They still can't feel sorry
But they project.
Because you make an point of how human they started, and still are underneath it all.

"(...) thought back to the many villages, towns, and cities eradicated during their tenures as destroyers of the world."
The thoughts going thru their head at Cell razing the city are completely human, because it's what you and I would think of

I love Seventeen going "Ass!" upon being denied a glimpse into Sixteen's doom
I want to say...good that King Kai is an ass. You've got enough on your plate, Seventeen.

Eighteen keeps her guard very high. She thinks King Kai is out to get her psychologically, but what if she was trying to protect her vulnerability, her emotions, budding and fresh and...there.
For Krillin.

"Time, the factor that's supposed to heal everything,(...)"
Idk, my friend.
It dulls and blunts but healing? Things don't go away
And what the twins are feeling and experiencing here won't be shrugged off
No matter how much time they'll put between it and...the rest of eternity that awaits them.

I'm looking forward to following their journey.
It was good to be back.

Your wtiting is deep and clever as usual, great job

SSS
2/1/2023 c13 2sourcandygaga
OMG the ending of this chapter. How will this be explained to krillin yamcha and tien and yeah i wonder what can be done about their real names being trigger words for present 17. excited to see how this all unfolds especially how the future cyborgs react to everything
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