Title: He Says He Is An Experimental Theologian Author: SailorPtah Rating: M Genre: Mystery/Slice of Life? Status: Complete. Also, there's sequels. Fandom: His Dark Materials / Welcome To Night Vale Pairings: Cecil/Carlos Length: 181K, 32 chapters Summary: Links: Archive of Our Own series page Chapter One Director's Cut edition Okay, so this is odd. It's a mashup of the Pullman's HDM universe and the Welcome to Night Vale podcasts, set in the original times for each. So the events of NL, TSK, and TAS all happened a hundred years back or so, and now Carlos Ramirez is moving from New Denmark to Hispania Nova (I think) to do research in the strange town of Night Vale. His counterpart, Carlo Raimondi, goes to work in the nearby town of Desert Bluffs, and makes new friends working for Strexcorp. The biggest thing for me, first of all, was that this is told from the point of view of Carlos Perfecto, the outsider. He comes to Night Vale, and doesn't know all of the rules (no writing instruments, angels do not exist, do not think about the dog park), and as such everything is really weird. Listening to the podcast, Cecil never really goes "Oh, and this is all really strange, isn't it?", instead talking about it as if everything was normal. A five headed dragon on the run from the secret police? Just remember to report him if you see him, so you can get your loyalty card stamped. This makes the writing more unsettling, but it doesn't cross into creepypasta. And with Lyra&Pan's adventures being a popular kids' TV series, the existence of the panserbjorn, the realm of the dead, and so on... There is a reason for Carlos not just running screaming out of town whilst bleeding from the eyes. Still, the non-reaction of various characters so far is a little strange. I'm currently about a third of the way through the work, but it's interesting, novel, well written, and good fun. Carlos has just gone home for Christmas, and confuses his family when he turns up the radio to listen to the weather. He's also just on his way back from an eventful church visit. Now, I haven't read HDM in years, possibly a decade. But you probably don't really need to know much - daemons, witches, and the church. A quick wander through the wikipedia article would probably be enough, although it may well be readable by someone who isn't familiar at all with it. I'm not up to date with Night Vale, and haven't listened to that in a while either. BUT if you aren't familiar with the podcast, I'd listen to an episode or two before reading this. It'll help you understand the tone, maybe, a bit better. The writer does use Spanish (I think? Could be Mexican), and Russian (so far), although they do provide a translation at the end of each chapter. If you want it instantly, AO3 allows you to highlight text, so copying into translate isn't an issue. Rated 5/5. I started reading three hours ago, and didn't realise where my evening went.