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Complete Mother of Learning by nobody103 - T - Original Fantasy

Discussion in 'Original Fiction' started by Betosa, Apr 3, 2013.

  1. Celestin

    Celestin The Cursed Child

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    It's not easy to finish things with a good conclusion, more so when it comes to a story of 800k words written over 9 years, but fortunately this time it happened. No twists or surprises just to make it unexpected, but a solid, satisfying ending with a little of tease for the future.

    I don't really have anything to complain about and I want to read a sequel if it ever happens.
     
  2. Alindrome

    Alindrome A bigger, darker mark Moderator DLP Supporter

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    That was an awesome end to such a cool story. I'm hyped to see the next thing he writes.

    Really echo the 'need fanfiction' front. Does anyone have any plot bunnies? (Don't forget your spoiler tags)
     
  3. Ceebee

    Ceebee High Inquisitor

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    So I jumped in and went from the last chapter that I had read (89) all the way through, and I very much enjoyed it.

    I can't really form very many distinct thoughts, other than the fact that I echo Celestin. It was a good, satisfactory ending.

    As I was reading through my backlog I found the story was wrapped up in a rather cohesive fashion. I think the decision to read as a full block was absolutely the right one, as the chapter-by-chapter cliffhangers waiting for the next one probably would've killed me.

    As the story moved through the beats, such as Red Robe's identity reveal, the meeting where the truce was established, Silverlake & Zorian's chat. Novelty returning! It was all great.

    The ending was nice and measured. There was no 'rocks fall, everyone dies' Pyrrhic victory, but the ending also didn't feel like the opposite, where everything went perfectly by sheer authorial fiat, because of course the good guys always win.

    While most things went very well for Zorian & Zach in the end, I guess the sheer weight of 800k words, all struggles and setbacks they faced throughout the story let the good ending feel completely and utterly deserved.

    In terms of the epilogue, the triple ship-bait of Raynie, Akoja & Tinami (the characters aside from Tavien that I'd consider 'shippable') getting their own sections made me laugh. nobody had to know how to rile the readers up.

    Fic ideas?
    Well. There's always the majesty of hotyoung!Silverlake/Zorian. Flavours include Zorian siding with Silverlake, or converting her back to the side of good.

    Zorian & Quatach-Ichl's next meeting. (As enemies? Or allies of temporary convenience, two arch-mages respectfully having a chat about magic?'
    Zorian's adventures as a beastly spell-formula craftsman and the situations, whether amusing, dangerous or both he gets involved in.
    The quest to reclaim the imperial Orb.

    Edit: put fic ideas in a spoiler, just in-case.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2020
  4. Donimo

    Donimo High Inquisitor

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    There's always the dimensional hop idea. When Zorian pops out of the time loop he accidentally ends up in Hogwarts/Sunnydale/Westeros instead.

    I'd love to see a take on Zorian and Quatach Ichl establishing a correspondence. Also what if Zorian hadn't body jacked himself. Two of them running around, one we know, the other the little shit from the beginning of the story.
     
  5. Alindrome

    Alindrome A bigger, darker mark Moderator DLP Supporter

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    That's brilliant! The ultimate culmination of seeing how much Zorian has changed as a person.

    Food for thought for you guys if you haven't already heard it, I can see it being a juicy fic element:
    Remember how the gods went silent hundreds of years ago? Isn't it eerily reminiscent of how the angels were unable to be contacted inside the time loop? Yup. One theory is that there's actually an outer loop: a time loop on a global scale at magnitudes of the power of the one we've seen in the story, powerful enough to replicate the angels, but not the gods.

    It probably wouldn't have been created by the gods themselves, because as their creation of the temporary loop and all its restrictions shows, they consider it unethical to create and destroy creatures that venture too far away from their original existences in time. A time loop hundreds of years long is so far past unethical it's not even funny. All the people who get born and live their existences get wiped out, again and again. Perhaps the entity that did it was another primordial, or even the Dragon Below - if that's the case, then it no doubt has a nefarious purpose.

    There's tons of ways to bounce fic ideas off of that: what was the event/state the outer time loop is trying to achieve? Is Zorian or the events of sealing the primordial one of the key outcomes? Is it possible to escape a loop that you weren't even born into?
    But what I really want to see is
    Quatach-Ichl is the looper.

    HELL YEAH.
     
  6. cucio

    cucio Seventh Year

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    I hate to be that guy, but I found the description of the final battle rushed and perfunctory. It read like a summarized sports chronicle, with some random asspulling here and there.

    I agree the ending was tied up well enough, kudos to the author for rounding up such a massive story.
     
  7. thattin

    thattin Second Year

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    This is spoilers for the spoiler within the spoiler
    That is a brilliant idea! I always wondered how exactly QI got his divine blessing so from being marked for a time-loop fits really well.

    Based off this and given that:
    -The timeloop only uses mana per reset rather than just by running
    -The timeloop won't end if the original looper is still in the loop
    -QI wants to live forever

    QI is actually currently in the final iteration of his timeloop. He never exited so the loop at the end of the final month, just continued in it assuming he'd get shunted out. He didn't and just waited a bit? He got attached to his life got married had kids etc etc.

    He realised later on that the timeloop would end if/when he died. His children would get erased and everything he'd done in the past years would amount to nothing. He wouldn't let this happen, stooping down to the foulest and vilest of necromancy he successfully turned himself into a lich.

    Hundreds of years later he still keeps this secret. Occasionally secretly visiting his descendants (some of them currently rule Ulquaan Ibasa). He has done more research into divine magic though and found that the loop is slowly degrading still. He has time but it will either need recharging or fail soon.

    His most recent plan let him acquire a vast number of souls (the soul pillar) to recharge the loop - still just a stopgap solution. He had planed to make more pillars before the next continental war to get even more souls to buy even more time but seeing Zorian's skill with artifice has convinced him it might be time for a different approach.

    Z&Z now have to face the moral quandary of how much they are willing to help QI as they try to find a way to either stabilise or leave the world before it collapses, this time without the benefit of endless retries.
     
  8. Chime

    Chime Dark Lord

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    It kept me coming back after all these years, so it had something going for it! But in general, that was the author's style. I got the impression they didn't want to get bogged down in the details, which is certainly fair. When you have a time travel story and a fantasy story, the plot often gets unwieldy. When you combine them, it gets hairy. I'm not saying it's totally excusable - the story would be Superior with a capital s, if the author had taken the time to properly paint a more colorful picture. Yet, the story did already take nearly a decade to complete, so what can you do. And I can say that, as an overly descriptive writer myself, I often paint too complete of a picture. Imagination is what sort of carries what I consider to be the (sparsely written) Harry Potter series.

    I was satisfied the story ended. That almost never happens, realize; it takes a lot of dedication to end a story in something that resembles an arc.

    I felt like the first 33% of the story was crack, the middle 33% left me wanting more, so I definitely awaited a new chapter every month in the hopes for more crack, and the last 34% was definitely in some respects good, in order respects though, perfunctory or mechanical. A lot of things got left unsaid, a lot of acorns were left buried in the snow, and we missed out on a lot of potential. But what we did get was "good enough". It was executed with some novel concepts for a 'time travel' narrative. I think it was worth reading, though, I can't say I'll ever reread it; knowing that I won't get complete and total closure on a lot of hanging threads turns me off from investing more time in absorbing it in one sitting. But, don't let my faint praise paint a picture that the story failed or anything; it could just be more perfect. What I think it does do really well is inspire people to try experimenting in this genre more. Which is good, because I can never get enough convoluted time travel.
     
  9. Alindrome

    Alindrome A bigger, darker mark Moderator DLP Supporter

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    Definitely second this. Are there any half-decent copycats/inspired stories so far? I once trawled all of fiction press for time travel/groundhog day type stories and there was nothing else of much note. Really hoping we get some decent fanfiction for it, too.

    Still mildly scarred from perusing AO3 and finding ONLY Zach/Zorian romance drabbles. HELP
     
  10. Dryops

    Dryops Second Year DLP Supporter

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    I just came across this earlier in the week, and read it from start to finish over the last few days. Time loop stories are a guilty pleasure of mine, but this is one I especially enjoyed.

    I felt that the start was a little rough as far as writing. The first 3-4 chapters had several pieces that were a little jarring as far as word choice, and tone. Beyond that, things picked up quickly. The first half of the fic seemed like a traditional time loop fic, in the sense of working on building skills, and exploring. I really enjoyed the second half, when you started to see more of the motivations of everyone involved.

    The only real regret I have is that we didn't see more done with Quatach-Ichl. I think he was one of the characters I enjoyed the most, and I'd love to see a prequel or sequel at some point that focused more around him. He was a complex character, and under-utilized in my opinion.

    This is a solid 4.5 / 5 for me, rounded up to 5.
     
  11. Spanks

    Spanks Chief Warlock

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    Not a bad ending. I wasn’t left feeling cheated. What a fun story. I hope he does a sequel of sorts.

    Now I need more time loop stories!
     
  12. Donimo

    Donimo High Inquisitor

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  13. PpJt

    PpJt Second Year

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    Man, after following this on and off for about 8 years, I randomly checked on it a week ago and found that it was finished - and the author did a great job of it. It's honestly very rare that I finish a piece of web fiction of any stripe with only a warm sense of satisfaction at the end, but this one pulled it off.