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Thread: The Butterfree Effect

  1. #1
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    Default The Butterfree Effect



    The Butterfree Effect
    Some things are unchangeable. I like to pretend they are.

    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

    Rating: PG for implied character death
    Word Count: 1,152
    Verse: Anime
    Characters: Ash
    Author's Note: Written for pokeprompts on LJ. I'm a mixed bag on this one-shot; I'm not entirely digging the paragraphing in some sections, so feel free to point out the areas you felt were shaky. Or, you know, areas you liked. Whatever floats yonder boat. Hopefully you'll enjoy!

    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

    I imagine you are dead.

    I say this because it has been ten years since we have last seen each other, and who knows what can happen in a decade. (Gary tells me that the butterfree have a short lifespan. It is why, he tells me, your kind mate as soon as you reach adulthood.) I knew you had to leave. I don't think I entirely understood why back then. I still don't. I like to pretend I do.

    I imagine things in different ways.

    In one version, you turn around one final time. The sun is setting – do you remember? – and Misty, Brock, and I are standing at the cliff, and we're waving, and my mind is racing through memories, and it's blurry, and when I close and open my eyes for a brief second, you're flying in front of me, yellow scarf blowing back in the wind, and you squeak out your name with that delicate ring – a flourish on the “r,” a quarter-octave higher on the following “e's” – that echoes in my ears – I can still remember it – before you rest on my head and watch the rest of the butterfree fly off, your wings spread wide and antennae blowing in the wind, and we travel together again like nothing has ever changed, and I'm happy, eyes blurry for a different reason.

    I don't like this, Butterfree. I don't like it because I realize you left your mate, the one you tried so hard to impress, the one you loved so dearly, just to make me happy, but I keep imaging anyway, part because I'm selfish and part because I like the comfort that accompanies it.

    In another version, Team Rocket gets away with their plan, and you're alone, and I can imagine myself being enraged but secretly gleeful that you're still here with me, and I would have helped you through it; I would promise you the world (in the opposite way I would promise the world anything if it would bring you back to me) just to make you feel better, just to make you move forward, but that vision wouldn't be wiped away from your memory, the pink in the sea of captured white. That high-pitched ringing of despair ... how do you forget something like that? (You don't.)

    You would have watched her be swept away without a chance to say goodbye. At least I had the chance to say goodbye.

    I don't like this version either.

    I keep doing it despite my disgust at my previous fantastical visions, and I should know better because it doesn't change anything, but I need to keep doing it. I keep imaging. I imagine I send out Pidgeotto – Pidgeot, she's a pidgeot now – to fly after Team Rocket instead of you, and I don't listen to Misty – I still don't, but I pretend I do – when she says it'll hurt your feelings. It wasn't my intention, you know, to hurt you by suggesting such a thing. But I think about it. I think it's Pidgeotto that saves the day. Replace that with Bulbasaur. Replace that with Squirtle. All the plans are executed differently, but the outcomes are the same. I imagine you alone because you didn't impress your mate with your false bravado. You're too ashamed to try to go after her, and, rejected, you come back to me because in the end I am the second-place prize.

    I want to say that I'm glad you didn't settle for me. I'm not.

    Return to that cliff. Return to where I'm standing there, trying not to cry, and you come back toward me. What then? Would you live a few more happy years?

    A few more days?

    Hours?

    Minutes?

    Seconds?

    Would you be here now?

    (Gary says no.)

    I imagine you're with me still. All the battles we would have won (and lost). Can you see it? You use Psybeam to confuse our enemies, Stun Spore to paralyze our foes, Gust to blow away opponents ...

    I see it too, you know, you in battle. You're caught in the crossfire of Charizard's Flamethrower in one vision, and you die in a painful, fiery death. Pikachu accidentally electrocutes you when trying to master Volt Tackle. Bayleef's Vine Whip is just too tight around you. Tauros pins you against a tree for far too long. Maybe you'll die earlier than expected.

    You're better off, I think. I'm better off not knowing how you are.

    Yet ...

    What would have become of your family if you were with me instead? I wonder what would have become of your caterpie children. (Gary tells me butterfree just lay eggs in safe locations away from predators but do not watch them hatch.) Maybe one of your caterpie helped another trainer beat a gym leader. Maybe another caterpie evolved into a metapod and had a staring stand-off with another metapod like we did.

    Let's say your mate did find another mate for any number of reasons because you were stuck with me (don't make me list the reasons). What kind of eggs do you think your mate would have laid? Would those caterpie create havoc in this already messed up world? Would the world be better off with those caterpie instead of the ones you created? Would your mate even lay eggs that would have survived in the thick of the wood?

    I wonder who I would be with you. One thing I learned that day was that sometimes you have to sacrifice your own happiness to make the ones you love happy. I learned what selfishness means and selflessness too. In some ways, I felt like everything, and everyone, was self-created for me until that very moment, that moment where I am standing on the sun-soaked cliff, eyes wide and burning, trying not to lose sight of your shrinking silhouette, not because I don't want to miss the last seconds of seeing you but because I truly felt you were going to turn around and flutter back toward me.

    I think I grew that day. If you stayed with me, I wouldn't have learned that lesson, at least not yet, and maybe I needed to learn what I learned at that specific moment at that specific time in order to be where I am today. I'm still selfish, you know, and would still be if you stayed. But now I know that some things have to happen for better things to occur, not only for myself but for you, too, and others. It's hard to see it sometimes. I think that's why people imagine the hypothetical.

    No amount of imagination can change what's concrete.

    So I imagine you are dead.

    It's not because I like it.

    It's because that's the way things should be.
    Last edited by Breezy; 18th August 2011 at 9:21 PM.

  2. #2
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    The sun is setting – do you remember? – and Misty, Brock, and I are standing at the cliff, and we're waving, and my mind is racing through memories, and it's blurry, and when I close and open my eyes for a brief second, you're flying in front of me, yellow scarf blowing back in the wind, and you squeak out your name with that delicate ring – a flourish on the “r,” a quarter-octave higher on the following “e's” – that echoes in my ears – I can still remember it – before you rest on my head and watch the rest of the butterfree fly off, your wings spread wide and antennae blowing in the wind, and we travel together again like nothing has ever changed, and I'm happy, eyes blurry for a different reason.
    Was this intended to be such a run-on? Sort of iffy about it, but if it was intended, I guess it could work with the sort of frantic feel I'm getting from this so far.

    I'm a little shaky on this one, too, I have to admit. This is partially because it's not my preference in reading – but, hey, Breezy did it, so I had to give it a shot. XD But it's certainly not a bad read minus that initial holyguacomolerun-on, and I can see people who prefer this kind of stuff really really liking it. My favorite section was the little bit of character development at the end, when Ash realized some things have to happen despite him not wanting them to, for the better.

    The story itself also brings out a heckuva lot of more love for Ash's character in me, and puts a new sort of way of thinking on one of the best episodes already in the Pokemon Anime. So kudos for that.

    Forgive me if I sound a little nonsensical. Typing this off no sleep, but, meh.


    Though probably obvious with the picture, I was formerly known as IanDonyer. Actually got a username closer to my real name, now.

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    That explains why Ash never talks about the Pokemon he puts in the lab.

    He just wants them to be a part of the past, dead and gone.

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    Hey, now that's good fiction.

    Really, this was one of those episodes in the anime you didn't forget about. (that is, if you're old enough to have watched the orginal.) Probably also one of the only episodes in the first season that I feel really screamed to be expanded on. I mean, it was a kid's show after all, they had to move on, but the situation Ash was in there was a very adult one and I love seeing the rest of the feelings that were brought out in that moment.

    Now, the final part originally struck me as odd, but also seems to make sense in context. Ash is only supposed to be 10 years old in the original series. (I believe) So while it kind of seemed 'wrong' for him to just pretend butterfree's dead, I also see the instant relief that that can bring to a child. Just pretending to know the answer, even if it may be blunt or harsh, really is an accurate representation of what children do when put under stress. In a way, I kind of would have been disappointed if he came to a more adult conclusion like 'I can only hope you did well' or 'The time we had was good while it lasted.' The kind of, well not really childish, but juvenile answer to what happened to butterfree adds a totally raw sense of realism to Ash's character. I don't know if this is what you were going for, but just what my mind pulled out after a first read.

    Overall, a solid one-shot. Some parts didn't read well, which interrupted the flow and kind of brought the reader out of the hazy, dream like quality of Ash's narrative. I think with a couple of more out-loud read throughs and some restructuring on the iffy parts this can really a stellar one-shot.

    I learned what selfishness means and selflessness, too.
    The only grammar mistake I could find. I'm not sure but I think there's supposed to be a comma afters means too, but I'm no grammar nazi, I only picked up on that mistake because it really struck my ear bad.

    Overall, good read. Can't wait to find more of your stuff now. =p
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    Apologies for the semi-late replies. I usually take a day away from the story/story's review to separate my emotions from it, and then I was just lazy yesterday. =P


    Quote Originally Posted by IanDonyer View Post
    Was this intended to be such a run-on? Sort of iffy about it, but if it was intended, I guess it could work with the sort of frantic feel I'm getting from this so far.
    Sort of. I wanted to illustrate a frantic-ness and a flood of memories. It was actually separated into a couple of sentences, but it didn't achieve the tone I wanted and it felt choppier for me. I'll look over it though.

    I'm a little shaky on this one, too, I have to admit. This is partially because it's not my preference in reading – but, hey, Breezy did it, so I had to give it a shot. XD But it's certainly not a bad read minus that initial holyguacomolerun-on, and I can see people who prefer this kind of stuff really really liking it.
    It's actually not my cup of tea either, actually, which might be why the syntax/physical writing stuff (if that makes sense) is so ... odd in places. =P

    My favorite section was the little bit of character development at the end, when Ash realized some things have to happen despite him not wanting them to, for the better.

    The story itself also brings out a heckuva lot of more love for Ash's character in me, and puts a new sort of way of thinking on one of the best episodes already in the Pokemon Anime. So kudos for that.

    Forgive me if I sound a little nonsensical. Typing this off no sleep, but, meh.
    (I kind of wish I could write Ash as a younger character, but I can't for some reason.) I am you liked the ending, though; it took me a while to work on it, trying to find something that seemed to fit Ash's character (at least this adult version of Ash) but wasn't entirely cliche. I wanted to demonstrate him as someone who, at least back then, didn't understand everything entirely about the situation but was accepting of it yet at the same time not happy about it (a.k.a. everyone who is human).

    And no, you made sense. =P Thanks for reading!


    Quote Originally Posted by Sgeckledorf Spoongeblorb View Post
    That explains why Ash never talks about the Pokemon he puts in the lab.

    He just wants them to be a part of the past, dead and gone.
    That's definitely a way to put a spin on this story. =P I think once you accept something as dead, you can move on. By your theory, if he thinks that for every pokemon he leaves back at the lab, he doesn't feel bad about them ... *musing*

    Anyway, thanks for reading lol.


    Quote Originally Posted by Drat View Post
    Hey, now that's good fiction.

    Really, this was one of those episodes in the anime you didn't forget about. (that is, if you're old enough to have watched the orginal.) Probably also one of the only episodes in the first season that I feel really screamed to be expanded on. I mean, it was a kid's show after all, they had to move on, but the situation Ash was in there was a very adult one and I love seeing the rest of the feelings that were brought out in that moment.
    Yeah, it was an episode that has always stuck out in my mind. Like you said, it was a very adult sort of moment that Ash was thrust into, which I'm sure he was confused about but knew he had to do for someone he loved. I focused a bit on the selfishness spin because I felt like that particular ep was one of the episodes where Ash learned that things don't revolve around him/work in his favor. Not that I think he's entirely selfish of course, but most kids -- hell, most of us -- might have that feeling deep down that everything needs to work in our favor because it just has to.

    Now, the final part originally struck me as odd, but also seems to make sense in context. Ash is only supposed to be 10 years old in the original series. (I believe) So while it kind of seemed 'wrong' for him to just pretend butterfree's dead, I also see the instant relief that that can bring to a child. Just pretending to know the answer, even if it may be blunt or harsh, really is an accurate representation of what children do when put under stress. In a way, I kind of would have been disappointed if he came to a more adult conclusion like 'I can only hope you did well' or 'The time we had was good while it lasted.' The kind of, well not really childish, but juvenile answer to what happened to butterfree adds a totally raw sense of realism to Ash's character. I don't know if this is what you were going for, but just what my mind pulled out after a first read.
    I actually love your interpretation of the ending. That was kind of what I was going for. I made Ash come to the conclusion that Butterfree was dead to put his mind as ease; without some acceptance of Butterfree being gone, his mind would have started to wander about possibilities and bring him unease. Simply imaging him "gone" would have fostered some hope that maybe one day they'll reunite, and while that could have made for a good ending (at least one that was less of a downer), it would still give him that ability that maybe something will happen instead of nothing can happen.

    Though that isn't to say I don't think Ash would hope Butterfree did well (I'm sure he does), but I really did consider the impact that episode could have had on Ash back then as a ten-year-old and how he would cope with it later on as an adult. He did come to some adult conclusions, like admitting he was/is selfish to an extent, but like you said, there is something quite juvenile about his coping mechanism.

    Interestingly enough, one version of my ending was something like:
    I know you won't come back. I like to pretend you will.
    to reflect back on the first paragraph which I think also could have worked as a juvenile statement. I think it would have definitely changed Ash's character had I used that ending instead of this one. Kind of makes him more hopeful and ends the fic on a lighter note instead of, well, sad but at the same time accepting.

    Overall, a solid one-shot. Some parts didn't read well, which interrupted the flow and kind of brought the reader out of the hazy, dream like quality of Ash's narrative. I think with a couple of more out-loud read throughs and some restructuring on the iffy parts this can really a stellar one-shot.
    Agreed; I'm not happy with the overall structure. The transitions from one "memory" to another were hard for me to think of and the genre isn't a genre I usually write in, so I think that threw me for a loop. I'll be going back to re-read some sections, though if you could point out areas that you felt were awkward I'd appreciate it. =P Not that you have to, of course.

    The only grammar mistake I could find. I'm not sure but I think there's supposed to be a comma afters means too, but I'm no grammar nazi, I only picked up on that mistake because it really struck my ear bad.

    Overall, good read. Can't wait to find more of your stuff now. =p
    Thanks for catching that. I'll debate the comma before "too" too. =P Actually, that entire sentence. I revised that sentence about 3-4 times. x_X

    Thanks for the review! Greatly appreciated.

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    I'd like to write a review to this, but frankly, it's hard through tears. But I do believe this is by far the greatest fic I've ever read that is written from Ash's perspective. I don't know any other that captures his innocent, even somewhat naive spirit. It's outlook on Butterfree is also a unique one. Never anywhere have I seen a Butterfree fic that portrays Butterfree as dead. People tend to be too romantic in such a respect: Butterfree is either with his happy family or is returning happily to Ash's side. The realistic outcome, however, is that Butterfree is dead or gone, having passed in the short life-span that such a Bug-type is cursed (or blessed?) with. Overall, this is fantastic. A tear-jerker, that's for sure, but with blunt and to-the-point realism.
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    Quote Originally Posted by GalladeRocks View Post
    I'd like to write a review to this, but frankly, it's hard through tears. But I do believe this is by far the greatest fic I've ever read that is written from Ash's perspective. I don't know any other that captures his innocent, even somewhat naive spirit. It's outlook on Butterfree is also a unique one. Never anywhere have I seen a Butterfree fic that portrays Butterfree as dead. People tend to be too romantic in such a respect: Butterfree is either with his happy family or is returning happily to Ash's side. The realistic outcome, however, is that Butterfree is dead or gone, having passed in the short life-span that such a Bug-type is cursed (or blessed?) with. Overall, this is fantastic. A tear-jerker, that's for sure, but with blunt and to-the-point realism.
    I gotta admit the start of your review scared me. Thought you were going to go on a tangent about how awful this fic is or something. XP I am flattered that it got that much out a reaction out of you and that you liked my interpretation of Ash's character; he wasn't easy to write in, surprisingly, and I'm actually not entirely satisfied with my portrayal (there's going to be revisions!), but I'm glad you felt the naivety in the narrative but the blunt acceptance/realism at the end.

    Thanks for the review. =)

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    You know Breezy, I could see how Ash would think every Pokemon in Oak's lab is 'dead'.

    Ash once saw Oak eating Gary's Krabby for lunch. What if he did the same to the rest of Ash's Pokemon?

    Sceptile-leaf soup?

    Smoked Donphan ribs?

    Driftveil fried Shiny Noctowl?

    Damn, my mouth's watering now.

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    Oh wow you did another one-shot I am a bit late on this one, most of the comments here have some similarities to how I felt, but I thought I'd mention some other things.

    Ash, during his adventures that we've seen, would be the type of person to think his pokémon are better off when being set free/given away (even if supposedly temporary), and naturally would be happy for them. With this in mind, I felt it was odd for him to feel this way you've shown regarding Butterfree.

    However, I tried to put reason to it. A lot can happen in ten years. Even with Ash being the type to not let his resolves and ideology falter (somewhat childish yet mature as they were), it is possible something could've happened, likely tragic to trigger some nostalgic memories, or the rhetoric Gary used when explaining about Butterfree and their lifespan. Perhaps most importantly, Butterfree (or more specifically Caterpie) was the first pokémon he caught, giving a strong connection to just as he has with Pikachu. This was apperent also during the St. Anne time when he traded his Butterfree for the Raticate reluctantly, only to trade back for his Butterfree.

    I think this one-shot left a lot to think about what could cause Ash to feel this way and how this "cope" manner he uses will affect his previous self-ideologies. On paper it looks depressing, but this could eventually lead to a return to his old ways which were the reasons he got as far as he did each season. Could make for a good movie!

    My apologies for going outside what you probably wanted for me to comment on (maybe I am just tired as I will be sleeping after writing this up). I guess there wasn't much more I could add to what most here have said. Do I agree with the way Ash approached it? Not really, as I found the maturity he had in his younger days to be more correct in my eyes. However, as I've said earlier, him being in this current state gives an interesting sense of mystery of what events could've caused this change in him and how it will affect his future. Again, a good idea for a movie haha~

    Great job as always =)

    Edit: Just wanted to mention that I wasn't trying to call you out on the way you portrayed Ash at all (just as you haven't towards Kasumi in Nameless Supplanter). While it was different to me, it also perked my curiousity on how this could be, a flashback and foreshadow that may never come to light in an unsolved mystery sort of manner. I wonder if this is my way to cope with a depressive ending? XD
    Last edited by Caduceus Brigade; 21st August 2011 at 8:01 AM.

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    Ah yes, that reminds me of one other thing I meant to say about this. Many people may believe that this fic features Ash in a rather unsavory light, showing his selfishness at wishing that Butterfree would have come back to him and would have abandoned his own family for him. But what so many people seem to forget is that Ash is just a 10-year old (supposedly) kid. How many 10-year olds (:P) can be expected to show such maturity in such a situation, in understanding that they must let a friend go for their own good? I think this fic is truly great in that it establishes Ash with the naive and childish spirit that so few think about, even if he is 20-years now. But as is the human nature, not even increased maturity will always decrease selfishness. . . That, I believe, is what this truly symbolizes.
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    *shrugs*

    I don't really have much to say about this - I'm basically here to say that I've read it and I liked it. However, it did take me a while to figure out that it was Ash narrating. I've also always hoped that Butterfree would someday come back to Ash. IMO the "dreamy" style of this one-shot complements the fact that Ash is wishing things were different . . . well, that's all I have to say!
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    I do love that this fic has multiple interpretations in response to it. I know that my characterization on Ash is a bit shaky, and I definitely think I could have incorporated his surface personality a little better into this story. I have no doubts that he wishes Vutterfree well, which is why I'm debating changing the ending from that depressing ending to the one currently to this one: "I know you won't come back. I like to pretend you will" even though that would change the overall tone into something completely opposite of the original story. If not the ending, I will incorporate more of his hopeful perspective/well-wishing toward Butterfree while trying to keep the same tone I wanted to achieve.

    The main reason why I chose this sort of characterization of Ash is because I think it makes him a little more human. Yes, he is a optimistic, loveable, forgiving character, but I think even inside those people is that vulnerability, that selfish person where we wonder how things could have changed just to benefite his/herself even though it could have negatively effected others. I don't think he wishes that he could have Butterfree back, but I don't think he wouldn't stop to wonder if Butterfree was still there.

    Likewise, I think there's a stigma behind the idea of death; I think most of us associate it with more less-than-positive feelings. I was particularly intrigued with the feedback for this story because of that opening and closing line, and I'm glad to see there were a lot of response to it. I can see how it can be a downer ending; I can also see how it can be hopeful. I know when I was personally writing it and, in particular, that end line ("That's the way things should be"), I saw Butterfree's "death" as Ash's recognition that things can't, and shouldn't, change because of all the different end results, some better and some worse. Maybe saying "I am imagine you are dead" is a hyperbole for Ash, but I like to think of him accepting things the way they are in the end and being okay with it. (And, of course, that isn't to say other interpretations of this fic aren't valid.) Also, him having selfish thoughts of Butterfree staying and generally dismissing them in the end is something Ash would do; it shows that he is human, that he has faults, ideas that are selfish or darker, but he always returns back to reality, or that Butterfree left him happy because he wanted/needed to.

    Long ramble aside, I'll respond to some things now. =P

    Quote Originally Posted by Caduceus Brigade View Post
    Ash, during his adventures that we've seen, would be the type of person to think his pokémon are better off when being set free/given away (even if supposedly temporary), and naturally would be happy for them. With this in mind, I felt it was odd for him to feel this way you've shown regarding Butterfree.
    I think it depends how you read his rhetorical scenes. I don't think he's necessarily showing regret for letting Butterfree go, but there's wonder about what would have changed whether or not Butterfree stayed and the impact it would have had not only on Ash and his butterfree but all of the world. And, for the most part, Ash returns back to reality that his butterfree is gone and, perhaps, better off. However, this doesn't stop Ash from wondering anyway, which I don't think is a bad thing but something human in all of us. Him accepting Butterfree as "dead" is accepting Butterfree's choice and path. It may not be dead for all Ash, and we know, but it's acknowledging that Butterfree has gone its own way.

    However, I tried to put reason to it. A lot can happen in ten years. Even with Ash being the type to not let his resolves and ideology falter (somewhat childish yet mature as they were), it is possible something could've happened, likely tragic to trigger some nostalgic memories, or the rhetoric Gary used when explaining about Butterfree and their lifespan. Perhaps most importantly, Butterfree (or more specifically Caterpie) was the first pokémon he caught, giving a strong connection to just as he has with Pikachu. This was apperent also during the St. Anne time when he traded his Butterfree for the Raticate reluctantly, only to trade back for his Butterfree.
    See, I kind of disagree with that, the whole not having his ideology falter. I think it's strong for certain, but I think it's still fallible to him wondering about other possibilities that supposedly would have benefited him more than his pokemon. Him returning back to reality in the end is actually a strong part of his ideology, albeit written in a darker light. He accepts that Butterfree is gone and that it was Butterfree's choice to leave. Of course, that's interpretation of Ash's character which varies between all of us. =P

    It is funny that you do mention Butterfree being the first pokemon Ash caught. I had a scene that focused on that and why he was affected by it, but I cut it out because it seemed unnecessary. Maybe I should reinclude it to help explain his thought process.

    Edit: Just wanted to mention that I wasn't trying to call you out on the way you portrayed Ash at all (just as you haven't towards Kasumi in Nameless Supplanter). While it was different to me, it also perked my curiousity on how this could be, a flashback and foreshadow that may never come to light in an unsolved mystery sort of manner. I wonder if this is my way to cope with a depressive ending? XD
    Gah, so behind on Nameless Supplanter. ;-; Apologies. I really need to get back on that.

    Nah, I totally understand where you're coming from with Ash, and I agree that I could have incorporated his personality better into this piece. I do think there is a darker side to Ash that is rarely seen in the anime but I'm sure exists in some aspects, and I wanted to see if I could explore it.

    I also think there are multiple ways to read the ending; I think on a surface level it is depressing because it does involve the word "death" and the tone at the end is slightly moody. "That's the way things should be" is about acceptance, though, not just of the bad things, like Butterfree leaving, but of the good things too, like Butterfree starting a family with a mate he adores.

    Anyway, lots of love for the commentary; it was really insightful to read. =)




    Quote Originally Posted by GalladeRocks View Post
    Ah yes, that reminds me of one other thing I meant to say about this. Many people may believe that this fic features Ash in a rather unsavory light, showing his selfishness at wishing that Butterfree would have come back to him and would have abandoned his own family for him. But what so many people seem to forget is that Ash is just a 10-year old (supposedly) kid. How many 10-year olds (:P) can be expected to show such maturity in such a situation, in understanding that they must let a friend go for their own good? I think this fic is truly great in that it establishes Ash with the naive and childish spirit that so few think about, even if he is 20-years now. But as is the human nature, not even increased maturity will always decrease selfishness. . . That, I believe, is what this truly symbolizes.
    I like to think that, too, but in a semi-different way. I think that selfishness is not so much childish as it is just human. I think him ending the fic with the reality of the entire ordeal is a sense of growth. As I said for, like, the hundredth time (sorry guys haha), it's him accepting what has actually happened between him and Butterfree, and I think it would have been a bit backwards to have him end the story with a deluded hope that Butterfree will come back to him. (That said, I should probably add in Ash wishing his pokemon well somewhere haha.)

    Anyway, thank you for the additional comment, Gallade. They were nice to read, and I'm glad that you have seemed to get a lot out of it.



    Quote Originally Posted by kjt View Post
    *shrugs*

    I don't really have much to say about this - I'm basically here to say that I've read it and I liked it. However, it did take me a while to figure out that it was Ash narrating. I've also always hoped that Butterfree would someday come back to Ash. IMO the "dreamy" style of this one-shot complements the fact that Ash is wishing things were different . . . well, that's all I have to say!
    Yeah, I probably need to incorporate more of Ash's personality into it, or maybe put in more scenes from the anime that could have changed had Butterfree been there instead of rhetorical ones.

    Thanks for the R&R. =)

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    That was awesome. Gives you a good reason as to why Ash just lets a lot of his Pokemon go instead of keeping them. I remember many a discussion as to why Ash lets so many of his Pokemon go and I think this one-shot explains it the best. Because it would be better for him that way. He learned a lesson he needed to learn, changed a little bit inside.
    Good stuff Breezy. I do agree that some of the paragraphs seem a little strange or whatever, but I wouldn't know what to do to fix it... sorry. Though you may have fixed most of it by the time I actually did get to read it. (stupid procrastination)
    Anyway, good insight into Ash's mind with this one. You do really well with that, letting us get into the minds of the characters. It makes the stories much more interesting. Good one-shot Breezeh, and now back HLBMA.
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    I have to say, I quite like the characterisation in this: I thought you brought a nice little bit of realism to our dear Ash. x3 While I can see how Ash's portrayal can be seen to differ a little from some of his pre-given characteristics, I nevertheless really enjoyed it. No character is as selfless as we'd like to portray them, and I thought you tackled this flaw quite nicely.

    There isn't much else I can add, really - it's all been well covered by others. x3 I actually read this a couple days ago, but after reading all of the responses I felt there wasn't really anything I could add, haha. I quite liked the ending you've got up there, as someone else said it's not the 'I hope you are well' etcetera selfless answer that we always get, but something imperfect, real, and that's always nice. The memory sentence, I agree, does seem a little long - but that was only after it was pointed out several times, and with my record if I'd read it before, I probably wouldn't have recognised it. xP :3 In any case, despite it being a form of writing you don't write that often, I thought you did well. x3 Kudos, my dear~


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    Quote Originally Posted by Breezy View Post
    I do love that this fic has multiple interpretations in response to it. I know that my characterization on Ash is a bit shaky, and I definitely think I could have incorporated his surface personality a little better into this story. I have no doubts that he wishes Vutterfree well, which is why I'm debating changing the ending from that depressing ending to the one currently to this one: "I know you won't come back. I like to pretend you will" even though that would change the overall tone into something completely opposite of the original story. If not the ending, I will incorporate more of his hopeful perspective/well-wishing toward Butterfree while trying to keep the same tone I wanted to achieve.
    It is fun when stories have multiple interpretations, just as I liked (and you commented on this too) where the nameless supplanter could see his actions as good but because you know his true intentions it makes you think he's shallow and selfish too. Yours especially gives more interpretations though which is even better!

    That new line you mentioned I think could be gentler to the ending tone and still have a hint of saddness to it yet feel more understanding for him.

    The main reason why I chose this sort of characterization of Ash is because I think it makes him a little more human. Yes, he is a optimistic, loveable, forgiving character, but I think even inside those people is that vulnerability, that selfish person where we wonder how things could have changed just to benefite his/herself even though it could have negatively effected others. I don't think he wishes that he could have Butterfree back, but I don't think he wouldn't stop to wonder if Butterfree was still there.
    It is true Ash is unique among the other characters for the way he is, certainly part of it being a stubborn hot-blooded kid. He certainly is capable of becoming more human as he matures, yet it feels depressing to think about that for some reason more so in the sense that he loses that "advantage" that made him unique.

    Likewise, I think there's a stigma behind the idea of death; I think most of us associate it with more less-than-positive feelings.
    I think one of the main reasons for the depressive emotions can stem from just how simple the death was mentioned by Gary. "Oh, yea, its prolly dead by now." kind of response. If a character dies, it would be less depressive if it wasn't in vain such as a heroic death or spur the other character(s) to become stronger from it and continue on. If the ending line was changed to the one mentioned above by you it could be less depressive in this way. The line that exists now isn't a bad choice by any means though, especially if you wanted to capture that feeling.


    I think it depends how you read his rhetorical scenes. I don't think he's necessarily showing regret for letting Butterfree go, but there's wonder about what would have changed whether or not Butterfree stayed and the impact it would have had not only on Ash and his butterfree but all of the world. And, for the most part, Ash returns back to reality that his butterfree is gone and, perhaps, better off. However, this doesn't stop Ash from wondering anyway, which I don't think is a bad thing but something human in all of us. Him accepting Butterfree as "dead" is accepting Butterfree's choice and path. It may not be dead for all Ash, and we know, but it's acknowledging that Butterfree has gone its own way.
    Haha that would've been a great modified flashback of sorts, to wonder how different his journey could've been with Butterfree still. "Could he have won those leagues he entered at the end of each season if he had Butterfree?" type of questions.

    I suppose I may have overlooked it somehow as he seemed to give a more selfish coping feel to his judgment. It is true though it is only a human response that can happen to anyone, especially if its still fresh which then I can not blame him for reacting the way he did. Your clarification made it make more sense now though.

    See, I kind of disagree with that, the whole not having his ideology falter. I think it's strong for certain, but I think it's still fallible to him wondering about other possibilities that supposedly would have benefited him more than his pokemon. Him returning back to reality in the end is actually a strong part of his ideology, albeit written in a darker light. He accepts that Butterfree is gone and that it was Butterfree's choice to leave. Of course, that's interpretation of Ash's character which varies between all of us. =P
    You are right he does in a way pick himself back up just as he would in any situation. I suppose I am just use to the manner where his stubborness (which could be related to his younger age) tends to prevent most times when anyone "normal" would have their ideology falter. But you did mention you wanted him to seem more "human" here so it works out.

    It is funny that you do mention Butterfree being the first pokemon Ash caught. I had a scene that focused on that and why he was affected by it, but I cut it out because it seemed unnecessary. Maybe I should reinclude it to help explain his thought process.
    It'd make a heartwarming recollection scene I think that can further play the nostalgic yet depressive thoughts in a nicer light.

    Gah, so behind on Nameless Supplanter. ;-; Apologies. I really need to get back on that.
    Haha I did notice you haven't reviewed much other people's either but no one can blame you for being busy. Besides, you've been more than helpful with everyone I'm sure. This is especially true for me as I continue on even though I am shamelessly the only one bumping my own thread but with new Acts. It's alright though, even if I may not appeal to the style most people write here (better than thinking I'm no good) I still enjoy writing it and will continue on even in silence.

    Anyway, lots of love for the commentary; it was really insightful to read. =)
    Of course, anytime!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Breezy View Post
    Some things are unchangeable. I like to pretend they are.
    I think you got this wrong somehow, shouldn't it read 'I like to pretend they aren't'?

    If some things are unchangeable, you don't need to pretend that some things are unchangeable, because they already are unchangeable.
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