|Reviews for Two Roads Converged|
| Guest chapter 12 . 1/23
The first 5 chapters of non-canon original backstory are a slog to get through, and I don't particularly like the story choices personally, but it's worth it. The "Prologue" through "Tabula Rasa" give you a sense of time, character growth and builds a relationship between Steiner and Beatrix. With his stodginess and her stoicism they need that time. Theirs is a slow-burning relationship, years of animosity and rivalry that gradually changes as they do. They've only just made it to "friends" after great difficulty and only just begun to get the tiniest inkling that they might feel something more. The payoff is long in coming and they've still got so far to go.
Starting with "Fragments of Memory" all the characters are on point and written extremely well. After the long slog through the non-canon backstory, suddenly there they were: Steiner and Beatrix as I know them from the game, with an understanding how they got there. Though much darker on account of the author not flinching from the copious deaths and realities implied/portrayed in the game, the color, flavor and humor of the world of FF9 is nonetheless there. I love how much the author really understands what Beatrix and Steiner are going through emotionally and psychologically in the canon game events of Disc 1 and Disc 2.
This story provides a rare glimpse inside Steiner's head, which I can't praise enough. The trading viewpoints between him and Beatrix are handled very well and provide a good balance and pacing to the story.
Despite my dislike of the original story elements, I love the embellishments to the canon story events. Overall this is one of the best FF9 fanfics I've read and one of the best SteiBea fanfics out there. Excellent work! Kudos to the author!
I only pray that this story gets finished one day! I like many others am desperately curious to see how the love letter shenanigans and subsequent epiphany gets handled.
| Masterteo89 chapter 12 . 10/5/2016
Nice, very nice.
A pity that we will never seen the end of it, but nonetheless this fiction is a gem.
| nosenudge chapter 2 . 7/28/2015
Really enjoying this story so far. I am trying not to read it too fast knowing that you haven't updated in years but I'm really happy to see on your profile that you are currently working on it! Looking forward to reading the rest.
| Guest chapter 12 . 7/27/2015
I suddenly (and I do mean suddenly, entirely out of the blue) decided I had to track this story down and reread it. In, like, six hours. Right before I had an opening shift. I swear, it looks like someone punched me in both my eyes, but I don't regret it at all. I'd forgotten how much I loved this story, how deftly you made these two side characters bloom. Now I remember why I spent countless hours messing around with Sculpy to make a statuette of Beatrix-she's always been a favourite of mine, but I've been reminded of how damn awesome she is.
It was wonderful to be immerse myself again in the intricacies and clever storytelling of both the game and this fic. What a way to take a well-built world and expand upon it. Instead of contradicting or merely retelling the events, you've improved upon everything. Things like the swordforms' clever names and subtle character interactions that could have plausibly happened. (Lani in Lindblum-and was that Fratley as a guard, too? Kuja and Beatrix, the Tantalus crew, Madelene and Klein...) And actually, just the way you breathe life into the battle system and world without once contradicting its in-game mechanics. Like, magic use needs ethers, petrify pudding will turn you to stone, and silence has in-world practical use beyond 'make the mage useless'. The subtle use of turn-based battle that didn't feel awkward at all. (Ugh, Quina, you gross little Qu, don't grab people with your tongue.) Talk about immersion!
The stark, gritty realism you roll with adds another layer of depth to the game, too. Like, I get why the writers didn't delve heavily into the politics and aftermath of BLOWING UP ENTIRE NATIONS and wartime grief, but it was kind of always lurking in the background. With Beatrix, who was also vastly under-written and lurking and begging to be explored. How wonderful it is you've combined those two quieter pieces of the game's puzzle and made it fantastic.
At the same time, classic FFIX humor abounds. Fluffles, you twerpy chocobo. I guffawed at the random treasure hunting and Ragtime Mouse. (On that note, AND the realistic travel time/restoration time. Like, Lindblum wasn't rebuilt in a day. Way to give it some weight.) And Freya's poker face. And with this background story, the infamous love letter scene becomes so much more amusing in my mind. Blank and Marcus... Ugh...
I feel a strong need to hook up my PS2 again and have a go. ;3
Also, using the names Bert and Bea just made me gigglesnort for hours. All I could picture was tinyurl bertsbeas
Anyway, I've no clue if you have an inclination to finish this fic, but I've got to tell you-you've still got readers left who would love it if you did.
| Guest chapter 12 . 6/28/2012
Oh dear god please, where is the rest! This is so well written.
| Blackfire 18 chapter 12 . 10/2/2011
I am a fly. I am a helpless fly caught in your web-and you'd leave me to starve before weaving more of this enthralling story. Y-You will be updating soon won't you?
Your writing style is richly detailed and refreshingly mature. Steiner is his hot-tempered, fiercely dutiful self. But we see his growth through the chapters of your story. Beatrix's progression is simply euphoric-starting off the smart, cocky soldier, gradually becoming the hard-edged weapon serving the empire until she is rocked to a place of uncertainty. Nothing is rushed. Their dialogue is spot on and I loved their teasing banter. And the other characters are well portrayed-everyone from Blank to Catherine has their part to play with no unnecessary duplicity.
I loved the rendition of your fight scenes. It makes so much more sense that there are many near misses rather than connecting blows, especially when the party goes up against Beatrix. Come on, if the lady actually struck them they'd be missing limbs. And it only adds to Beatrix's power that she was 'just sparring' with them.
I tripped on a couple things, namely Kuja and Beatrix's past history, but you brought it across convincingly enough that it didn't detract me from the story that much. Also, if Beatrix had not been home since her eye injury, wouldn't her father have reacted to it? And I wouldn't peg Catherine the type to stutter around Steiner with Beatrix as her role model. Moreover, in the the Army, majors outrank captains. Steiner would be saluting Catherine!
But really this is such a wonderful story! I stayed up later than I should have on several nights to finish off a chapter. I even tried to sneak in some fanfic reading at work. That doesn't happen often. As I said earlier, I'm caught.
You are one talented writer and I hope you will weave more of this beautiful web soon. Very soon.
| Guitah chapter 1 . 9/1/2011
Ah, it's been two years since the last update ;_; well I guess it doesn't hurt to review anyway, the way you write is so fantastic, I'm simply in love with this story. Hopefully, maybe, just maybe, you manage to finish it someday!
| Traingham chapter 12 . 8/9/2010
Oh man, this past weekend has been a pleasure all due to this wonderful gem. From the first chapter I can honestly say that I've been enthralled by this story. You write Beatrix and Steiner incredibly well, so much that I can actually empathize with them, something that is quite rare to come across in literature.
Well, I suppose most of my love for the story goes to you segments focused on General Beatrix. I feel in love with the character on the first confrontation at the end of the first disc. She was a pleasantly unexpected villain, elegant, and merciless, but devoted to Garnet above all, and while her romance with Steiner was very sweet toward the end, I feel like they just had so much more potential work with for her as a character.
Anyway, I'll stop my ranting now. This doesn't sound much like a review anymore, so I'll simply end by saying cheers.
| Bad one chapter 12 . 6/13/2010
I really hope that you will continue it one day )
| The Occurian chapter 12 . 3/19/2010
You really should continue with this fic! It captures the characters perfectly! Steiner's blumbering persona and Beatrix's cool charm are so well-drawn out! Don't leave me hangin now...
| Doc. Dump chapter 12 . 2/21/2010
This is the best ff9 fic I have ever read.
Your fic is perfectly paced, with electrifying moments chasing each other like heartbeats. It is an eloquent and funny tale, packed with humorous allusions to the game and rip-snorting drama (The reference to the POP QUIZ! monster made me LOL so hard). This fic captures completely the atmosphere of FF9. KUDOS!
| Clement Rage chapter 11 . 2/17/2010
I've just read over this whole thing again, and I feel I have to mention- this really is an excellently written piece. It's nothing I haven't said before, but I had to comment.
| Maeleene chapter 12 . 12/26/2009
I don't know why, but this is the second story I was missing some update alerts for. I began reading this chapter, then realized I had no clue what was going on. As it turns out, I was three chapters behind.
But that's fine! With no work and a boring but relaxing day off, I spent it reading and enjoying your wonderful creation to the fullest extent.
Easily, I can tell you this is one of my favourite fics ever read. And I've read more than my fair share. On top of that, yours is twice the treat, as it's one of the few 'retellings' of a story that doesn't make me want to nod off. You've successfully managed to both chronicle the game and bring new depth to some lesser-loved characters, all the while remaining steadfast and faithful to their personalities and game-roles. I applaud you, and wish dearly this had been included in the game itself! (Beatrix is my favourite character, and reading your fic only reinforces the sentiment.)
I really have no words beyond this. It seems redundant and meaningless to throw gleaming adjectives at you in high praise. Though, I can when you update next if you like. ;)
I do hope you'll update soon, though. I really love this story and the direction it's taking. I can't wait to see how you will let this unfold. On top of that, it's a splendid way to spend my 'boring' days and gives me lots of fuel for my dimmed imagination. Of course, quality is always better than rushed attempts to please impatient fans. But my greedy eyeballs are pressuring me to beg for a speedy installment. Bad eyeballs... I'll be sure to keep them in check next time around.
Happy Holidays, and thank you for this wonderful treat!
| Clement Rage chapter 12 . 12/17/2009
One of the fics I was genuinely delighted to see updated. Rare though the updates are, they are worthwhile. I've forgotten some of the rest of it, must remember to read back over it again. You have no idea how happy it made me to see a new chapter...They're both brilliant characters who tend to be a bit neglected.
| Myshu chapter 12 . 12/15/2009
Steiner with his hair down (literally and figuratively) is AMAZING. Such a rare and odd glimpse of him that Zidane's party will never get to see. It's also funny that he gets along with Cinna, of all people-which makes sense with the coffee, but is still ironic considering his regard for the thieves.
A blonde Bea is pretty interestin' too-and alarmingly easy to picture. Ack, mental images...
But really, I like what you did with this chapter, which took its time getting the reader comfortable with Bert and Bea's newfound lot. It effectively showed how restless and guilt-driven Beatrix was in that position, and then threw a happy little twist at the end. Lindblum is fun and all, but I'm glad they're getting to go back. Of course, there's still a long way to go for the both of them...
So! Onward, I hope. I'll be waitin' for the next one.