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WIP Constellations by UnwelcomeStorm - T - Worm/Okami

Discussion in 'Almost Recommended' started by Vira, Sep 24, 2016.

  1. Vira

    Vira Order Member

    Dec 20, 2006
    Title: Constellations.
    Author: UnwelcomeStorm.
    Rating: T.
    Genre: Alternate Universe.
    Status: In-Progress.
    Fandom: Worm/Okami.
    Pairings: None.
    Summary: When she was young, Taylor made a friend in a mysterious white dog; now, as her life spirals out of control, the dog guides Taylor along a different path.
    Link: https://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/constellations-worm-okami.414320/

    The obvious comparison one could make about this fic is to Go Gently. They are both light-hearted stories with a non-powered Taylor that doesn’t have big goals in life, but interacts with a diverse and strange group of people that, against all expectations, become her friends. The ABB are a big part of this fic and Danny also plays an important role.

    I had a lot of big problems with Go Gently, and I’m happy to say that this fic avoids most of them. While the crossover elements bring a sense of lightness and sometimes silliness to the Worm setting, they don’t feel out of place, and the writing remains sincere and focused on Taylor’s tale. You don’t need to know anything about the crossover media to follow the story, and Taylor’s relationship with Amaterasu (or “Sunny”) is cute.

    Coincidences such as Taylor randomly meeting big name capes sometimes tests my suspension of disbelief, but they’re not story-breaking and have remained small thus far. Taylor also doesn’t really question Sunny’s powers or where she came from, and can seem passive because she’s letting Sunny guide a lot of her actions. That’s the one thing that stops me from loving this story because Go Gently had the same problem. It's not a big deal so far, but it could be in the future.

    If you’re looking for something light and long, try this.

  2. Nemrut

    Nemrut The Black Mage Prestige

    Aug 9, 2009
    Department of Post-Mortem Communications
    High Score:
    I kinda have two problems with the story.

    One, it's a bit...awkward that Taylor becomes the spiritual and cultural leader of sorts of the Asian community in Brockton Bay. I mean, I mostly enjoyed that part of the story, of Taylor carving out her own place in Brockton Bay and found something that fulfilled her and allowed her to connect with other people in the way she did but I'll admit, it does have some unfortunate shades that I really can't totally ignore. It's a bit "Last Samurai"-y if you know what I mean, that while Taylor is learning this new culture and spiritual perspective, that she is very much a student but that she's also kinda the person bringing it back, that she is being revered as a leader. Overall, it's mostly (relatively) well handled though.

    The other is the PRT aspect of the story and while it hasn't exactly happened yet, the usual PRT shitstorm that happens in Worm stories is hanging over this like the sword of Damocles. We already have the PRT and Protectorate observing Taylor and thinking she is a parahuman and while I know it's supposed to be funny, I really take no joy in the PRT antics and I wish Taylor had flown completely under their radar.

    Danny absolutely failing to connect and communicate with his daughter was well done but then it kinda ruined things for me with him calling for Master/Stranger protocols. That after the charming scenes and originality of Taylor building a life like that we basically get a scene that says "enough of that, back to the usual worm badfic tracks".

    I honestly feel it's just a question of time before Taylor is brought in for some reason, that we get the usual "why didn't you trust me" fight with Danny, that we are going to have to deal with lawyers and meetings with Piggot, like I can see that some Japanese lawyer is going to take Taylor's side and get her out of there and whatnot. We are going to get the Wards hardsell.

    We'll probably even have the Clockblocker yelling bullshit scene after seeing Taylor's and Sunny's power demonstration for which Vista will hit him.

    You know, stuff that plagues 90% of all Worm fics.

    I really fear it's going to lead to that and I hope not, but it kinda feels inevitable, now that they actively know about Taylor and Sunny and are trying to catch them in action of sort.

    A lot of the problems in Worm fics can really be traced back to Danny's position in the story and here too I feel like the worst could have been prevented by Danny not having such a big part in the story, by him not being a cape and just busy at his canon job, without the PRT connection.

    So yeah, it's a charming, lighthearted story that is fun for large parts of it but has some fundamental flaws that really keep it in the guilty pleasure category for me.

    And as Vira said, there is the fact that Taylor doesn't seem to have a lot of agency in this fic, as it is Sunny calling the shots and Taylor just has to kinda deal with her decisions. On the other hand, I think the direct influence and leadership of Sunny is what's keeping this story from being cringeworthy, so who knows.

  3. yak

    yak Moderator Moderator DLP Supporter

    Jul 28, 2007
    Vira raises a lot of good points, but I think that Amaterasu is going to short circuit a lot of the potential future negatives that he's worried about. I haven't played Okami, but it appears that fixing bad situations and relationships is a significant part of the game.

    Humour is a large part of the story and sometimes it falls flat (eg the master/stranger nonsense) but there's more hits than misses, and the hits are good.

    Easy 4/5 for me.
  4. Vira

    Vira Order Member

    Dec 20, 2006
    Ehh, these last few chapters have gone crack-ish, and not in a good way. It makes me cringe reading it. I hope it goes back to normal.
  5. NuitTombee

    NuitTombee Dark Lord

    Feb 14, 2010
    The Peach State
    Yeah, I've bookmarked it and put it on the back-burner for now because of those.
  6. ReverseSide

    ReverseSide Slug Club Member

    Aug 1, 2009
    The biggest problem is that the author doesn't seem to know what kind of story they want it to be. Is it supposed to be heartwarming or humorous? Serious or crack? Is it a story about Taylor or not? Honestly, it flip flops between every other chapter and that's seriously off-putting to me.
  7. Mutton

    Mutton Unspeakable

    Feb 20, 2011
    Before the most recent chapters I'd describe it as fun. It had bits like Sunny showing up on top of the telephone pole to lick the camera but they were little asides. Same with Good Dog and the master effects. They weren't focuses of the story but rather little peaks behind the mask.

    Sunny goes on a rip roaring adventure taking out the E88 is the thing of omakes, not of the main story.
  8. Iztiak

    Iztiak Heir

    Dec 4, 2006
    This is pretty bad.

    This is a story about a child(? Mentally, at least) weeaboo who has become the "spiritual and cultural leader of sorts of the Asian community." It's super, super strange and awkward.

    Not only does she get instantly recognized as a "miko" as soon as Oni Lee sees her(????), but she goes from behaving like a 6 year old to shit like this:
    "I am Lung," he said, and knew his voice was deepened by his mask, turning his answer from mere words to a thing intoned. "I am the dragon. Why have you come here, intruded upon my territory?"

    "I saw the shrine was all busted up. It looked sad, so I did some work to fix it. Then I stuck around, because it would be sad if the shrine was neglected again." The girl took a breath, trying to inhale courage. "My question. Lung, what waterfall did you climb?"


    She repeated the question. He knew the legend, of course-- a carp that climbs the waterfall and passes through the Dragon Gate becomes a dragon itself. It was a tale of hardship and effort, leading to great success and reward. Perhaps this was part of her game, but it was insulting that she should have to ask.

    "I am the dragon of Kyushu. I drove off Leviathan, alone against the monster."

    "That made your name," she interjected, "But it did not make you. Lung, what waterfall did you climb?" What made him? He was Lung! He was-- Inside his mask, his eyes widened.

    No. She could not...

    Lung was the Dragon of Kyushu, a name to be feared and obeyed. But what had made Lung?

    Lung had been made by Kenta, face-down in his death at the hands of the woman in the suit. A birth through defeat, not triumph. Through resentment, not elation. That was what the cape was driving towards, hard eyes masked by a quivering frame. She seized his bare moment of weakness, and pounced upon it.

    "You can't answer me, and that is why you have no claim here. This shrine does not belong to you, it belongs to the people of this city. And this city does not belong to you, because you do not belong to it. You take, but never give." The sunlight was strong now, glaring off her simple shirt and tresses, circling in her glasses to make them twin bright orbs that managed to reflect his mask. Lung stared back at himself.

    Reading this made me genuinely uncomfortable.

    Also, random Japanese words scattered through the story. I mean, that shit is terrible even in Naruto fanfiction, but in this setting? Please, gag me.