Reviews for The Talk
princessebee chapter 23 . 4/27
It IS staggering that Raph would heed Leo's advice so soon after Leo caused such a fuck up - their relationship is seriously turning a corner in this fic.

Of course he also pushes Leo's hand away lol, but that could just as easily be a macho thing! XD

It is great to hear Raph really put Leo in his place for completely fair and justified reasons. Not that this never happens, but Raph can even more so be contentious for the sake of it. In this situation he has every right to challenge Leo. His words "we are on your team" are so succinct and perfect. Cos really, Leo - WHAT THE HELL? Your sworn duty is to protect your family. The other shit is fucked up but endangering one of your bros' life for no good reason - what is going ON in that head of yours? You can be arrogant sure, but this was next level. Get it together.

The whole conversation and interaction between Leo and Raph is great but Raphael's revelation of Don's suddenly advanced lying capacity and all it it implies heightens the tension, which continues to build powerfully to the intense disclosure Raphael makes, made all the more profound by his refusal to 'snitch' - though he also wonders if doing so might actually, in this case, be the right thing to do. And it all really starts falling into place for them both when Leo shares what Donnie has confided in him - leading to one of my fave ever Raph moments:
"Raph's breath hitched with emotion and he looked away sharply. He didn't retreat very long before looking back at Leo. No tears, just shiny eyed again as he admitted, "You're breakin' my heart over here..." His adams apple bobbed with a hard swallow and his jaw set for a moment or two before he asked..."
At once conveying so beautifully both the immense machismo and the immense heart of this guy.

But the revelations just don't stop. And we, the reader, are sickeningly beginning to realise just how unbearably, terribly awful the real story truly is as we learn that, of all people to fall out with, April and Don barely speak anymore... the answer can only be something colossal and something we probably don't want to think about... not after all the other clues that have been dropped throughout this story.

For all that this chapter beautifully portrays painful and complex dynamics between these brothers, it is wonderful... the layers of hurt and betrayal, of yearning and love, of a broken family striving to reconnect and heal after they have all experienced so much pain and sorrow, without the anchoring presence of each other for too long. These stubborn personalities that have so long resisted but now are so desperate to make it up... but there's so much left to do before they can get there. But where there's a will... there's a way. And now we know Mikey, Leo and Raph ALL have will and are determined to find that way. /corny cliche reviewer mode off

Let's hope it's not too late...
princessebee chapter 22 . 4/25
" "There's stuff he can't talk to us about. And it's killing him. Got it.""

This line is so PROFOUND. What I love about Mikey is, for all his goofing off, his himbo posturing, his seeming preference to stick his head in the sand, his tendency to be hella annoying and treat everything like a joke - the guy just gets people. He sees straight into them. He is powerfully adept at identifying what is going on for people. And this line, in its brevity and conciseness, just really punches that home. That he NAMES it - 'IT'S KILLING HIM' - in a way no one else has truly recognised or at least acknowledged as yet is so amazing.

""You're not hungry, dude." Michelangelo halted to give his brother a patient look. "No kidding. You haven't been hungry for a goddamn year. But it's okay. I get it.""
I've just been telling you how I tear up over everything, well I teared up over this too. Again, it's so simple, it's so profound. Mikey's been watching and seeing and feeling and knowing since forever and he's just bam with this knowledge.

It wasn't the only time I teared up! The whole scene between Don and Mike was beautiful for many reasons layered within their dialogue and their exchanges. I imagine for the first time Don is possibly feeling hope, and that's perhaps the biggest turning point of all. It's funny, I've read stuff lately on 'studies' that show when addicts have more in their lives to live for, when the reasons for their addiction are treated on an wholistic level, addictions often become less vital... practically easy to give up. I feel like anyone with any sense could've realised that (certainly true of my own exp), but hey 'studies' are 'proving' it now and it's the feeling I get from this interaction between Don and Mike here - that a corner, if not turned, is close on the horizon. I loved every second of their interactions, realisations, promises and declarations in this chapter even as my heart broke.

I know, from talking to you, that it's not what you're going for or have in mind, that you're slightly perturbed anyone would think Renet is being abusive and I don't really trust myself to articulate my feelings as well vocally as I can in writing, but I would have to say I think that encouraging frequent drug use in someone as severely traumatised and depressed as Don is absolutely abusive. Even if he is a 'willing' party, even if he consents, as you have said, his judgement is impaired by his state of mind and she's exploiting that. Even 'innocently' - it's still disturbing territory. It's indicated she wants to control him, so the degree of innocence is questionable too, really. More like what I've said before to you - thoughtless, selfish. Thinking only of her own wants. Not that I see Renet as an 'abuser' per se... as an abuser would perceive that this was only doing more damage to Don and would choose that BECAUSE of the damage it does, enabling further control, wheras Renet thinks it is doing GOOD for Don - but her conduct - and Jonas' collaboration with her - is definitely, imho, abusive, if you see what I mean in the difference.
I am not saying this contrary interpretation of authorial intent is a bad thing, btw, just that it adds extra poignancy and pain to the revelations that are happening here, as we continue to get a fuller picture of the hugeness of all that has happened. To comprehend how vastly fucked up everything has been for Donnie and how truly alone he has been. Even his closest friends in this time haven't truly had his best interests at heart - only what makes it easier for them. I have been there. It is profoundly lonely. It hurts to think about.

The continued development of the timey wimey stuff is marvellous, as always, as is the magnificence that is Titan and the wonderful combination of all that we love about Mikey NOW with the mature and experienced beauty he becomes 400 years later.
And the reference to Renet's foreshadow is chilling: " "I'm sorry," he whispered, thinking about her ancient eyes like glittering chips of ice drilling into him." BRRR great line... and important too, to know that Renet also matures and realises just how badly she fucked up here.

Beautiful stuff, winny! this fic is a force de triumph! or whatever that saying is...
Thesoccergirl30 chapter 22 . 4/20
I love how in this fanfiction there's so many things that I've never read in others. Like this time dimension thing that I'm still kinda confused, but slowly beginning to understand.
And these references to their biology of still being turtles. Like no one has ever written about that! At least I haven't seen a story where Anyone has.
I love all this unique creativity and can wait to keep reading :3
Okay are the characters like Renet and Jonas, are they original characters? Or where they actually from one of the series? :O
I Love Kittens too chapter 24 . 4/20
Renet and Donnie were together. Poor Donnie!
KameTerra chapter 24 . 4/20
Whew, that was intense! I mean INTENSE. This was an amazing chapter. It’s difficult for me to find the words right now to summarize how I feel after reading this, but that’s partly because I’m still sort of gasping for air, and flailing for words. My kidlets will undoubtedly be waking up soon, so I’ll just give you some notes I typed whenever I read something I wanted to comment on and that’ll just have to be good enough. ;)

“These 'massive responsibilities' you speak of… I believe he will call this 'being a hero'.”
-LMAO, he’s got a WORLD COLLECTION of comic books designed to tempt his younger self into accepting this mysterious position or role? XD XD So simple, so brilliant, and so f*ing hilarious!

“I did another forecast, and my projections for those two have improved significantly since I intervened. Originally they were on a path to be estranged for many years to come, and that's in keeping with the reality I lived through. But now there's this other possibility that I've got my eye on… Anyway, stay tuned! It could still blow up in our faces and become the next big reason to reset. But we're going to roll the dice on this one."
-This is just so Mike, and as I was reading, I thought it was a stellar example of WHY someone like Mike could be so good at a job like this. He’s just able to “roll with it”. It’s fascinating hearing Jonas’ comparisons between the two brothers, too.

“Jonas found himself studying her again, though he must have watched this scene play out at least fifty times before. He'd seen it often enough that he was no longer shaken to his core by the gore that would soon follow.”
-Oh god. Oh god oh god oh god. I had to stop here and regroup—I almost couldn’t keep reading. I mean, of course I HAVE to… but it’s so painful. Not just thinking of what’s coming on the replay, but knowing, knowing that other people have watched something that’s… well, starts off so intimate and of course beautiful to Donatello, and then ends in something SO destructive, both proximately and ultimately. Poor, poor Donnie. :( I ache for him, I truly do. And Jonas’ detached observations of April, and his speculations about why she’s so important to Don… This is so brilliantly done. I know I’m overusing the word, but I have no other word for it! It’s masterful. You’ve used what WE know about April’s character, as readers and “experts” of the TMNT verse, and played that against what a somewhat callous observer might see—and it makes it that much more… painful. He doesn’t get what’s so special about her—he’s not being mean, he just wouldn’t know. But I know, and it hurts to see something that, again, should be beautiful and amazing (if not for the ending), and look upon it with such crass shallowness.

"Here's what the council can't seem to understand, and I'm right there with them. From the moment all this started, right up until he jumps, this was what – three hours, total? Why is a three hour patch giving us so much damn trouble? Why is the mere mention of the events inside this minor patch threatening the verse with such a massive paradox implosion?"
-Why, indeed? I am completely, utterly riveted. Finally we are getting some answers, but as always, we are left with even more questions. Man, this is good stuff. The way you’ve handled this, as a conversation between Titan and Jonas, is absolutely genius. Revealing, but from a future perspective, which gives the reader some security (like, totally thank god April knows nothing of this now).

“Titan got it right away. "Oh my God," he whispered. "Oh my God, he lives here."”
-Aaaand the bomb keeps exploding… Wow. Just wow. I did NOT see this coming. Seriously, you amaze me with just how complex and well thought-out this story is!

Only thing to mention in the way of concrit, is that while most of the chapter is exceptionally strong, I felt the opening scene had room for improvement. I loved the descriptions of Don, the glimpses we saw of him through Renets eyes, and I liked the dialogue—minimal and playful. Gave me a good picture of what their dynamic commonly was. But… I didn’t love the descriptions of what was physically happening. I guess I didn’t find them all that… sexy? I think some of it was the diction. “Muff” and “tummy” come to mind as word choices that almost made me laugh a little, rather than feel the heat of passion. This was Renet 1st person, and I was doubting that Renet would actually choose these words. Part of it may also have been not enough sensory stuff in there. It was a little like I was reading what was happening, but not FEELING it, you know?

Anyway, as usual I can’t wait for the next chapter! Cheers, and happy writing.
Firebird Scratches chapter 24 . 4/19
Oh man! :( The fact that they were in love and living together, it just makes it all the worse! Though in a timey-wimey way, I guess it never actually...happened?! Not sure now whether our Don (Now Don) lived it or just saw it? hahahaaaa time travel fics are so fucked, I love it, it's like, how do you even talk about it and make sense?! XD I'm so enjoying this. And I LOVE Future Renet kicking her own ass and making her grow up and learn to take care of herself. Maybe she can even manage to help Don somehow. And oof, that has got to be BRUTAL for Time Titan Mikey :( Seeing something so horrible happen to two people he loves more than anything...ugh. Oo! I almost forgot in the wake of all the drama - the Renet smut at the beginning was really fun, too :) I love when she said she had him trained real good XD Seems like such a Renet thing to say. Hooraaaaay for updates! Keep em coming, please! :)
Gladrial10 chapter 4 . 4/19
I was enjoying this before but I'm abso-freakin'-loving it now! I gotta be honest, I wasn't sure I would. The entire premise just felt like it'd be...too awkward for it to be enjoyable. But you're characterizations are so on point that, despite the subject matter, it's flowing effortlessly.

Also, drunk/hangover Leo is a joy to behold and it's nice to see him and Raph being cool together.
M chapter 24 . 4/19
Hey, you should have waaaay more reviews on this! And you're welcome for any poorly typed reviews i have left :B
Speaking of...
YAAAAAAAAAAAYYYY NEW CHAPTER! I internally squeal for joy when you update! Wow this chapter was really revealing! Happy to get somethings confirmed and glad it was done so well. I guessed something sexual went down between Don and April but wow totally did not expect THAT! And Renet vs Renet was fantastic! I've always enjoyed how you wrote her and her relationship with Donatello and kinda wish they would use her more in one of the many different incarnations of turtles we have buuuuut also hesitant knowing it won't be the Renet I've grown to like through your verse (same goes for Angel! You and the rest of the TerrapinTarts really do amazing things with otherwise minor characters) Im also greatly enjoying the interactions between Titan and Jonas! Thank you for writing TMNT fanfics because they really do make my day brighter. As always, I look forward to the next chapter!
princessebee chapter 21 . 4/19
I think of this as our bonding chapter, it's the first one you read to me. Maybe our first skype session, I think?

I'm fading a little. I've been uselessly "trying" to work on my fic and miserably failing all night. I'm tired and a little drunk. The detail won't be great.

Love that first interaction between Raph and Leo.

Then we get into the really phenomenal meat of this chapter. An amazing blend of character interaction, intense revelation, more fascinating turtle biology, wonderful world building and thrilling plot development!

I love the development of the varying alien races. It's awesome to see this kind of thought and consideration put into conceptualising their cultures and people!

The dynamics here between Mikey and Don in particular are compelling; from the light to the very heavy their exchanges are particularly enjoyable and authentic. Again the crazy swing from LOL hilarity to frightening sadness... there is so much complexity here that is being captivatingly and steadily revealed!

I honestly want to smack Leo for dissing Splinter a little there. Whatever, Leo! I love Leo, but sometimes he is arrogant as fuck. It's good to see that there. Cos his actions here are APPALLING and clearly the consequence of that insufferable egotism he can often be guilty of.

I never expected this story to become so emotionally intense, way back when I first started reading it. Then it just grew and grew and revealed more than I ever anticipated. And so much the better!
LeatherLeaf chapter 24 . 4/18
I am really liking this story. I love the foreshadows. I like seeing Mikey in a different role, really cool. The sci fi stuff and time orbs, it's all up my alley. Donnie's past is beginning more and more dark. I await your next update.
Turtlefanforlife1982 chapter 24 . 4/17
Wow... That was hot and heavy... You are doing great!
princessebee chapter 20 . 4/17
I have not, as yet, been convinced to like Jonas but I certainly love the amazing world building you have done around him! All your tech and other concepts is so very awesome and detailed!

When I first started reading this story, I really had no idea of the scope and depth it would cover. A lot of the little clues flew over my head or confused me. Reading this chapter and getting my first full glimpse into the full enormity of this story was a real eye opener for me. I was like... wtf... omfg... ! This is bigger than I ever expected! Holy shit!

Because I hadn't read some of your other stories (Null Time) because they were incomplete... (a quirk of mine) I had no clue of this bigger backstory. It was good for me to read it this way and have my mind blown! Made it all the more exciting. And all the tantalising glimpses...

I still can't believe you sat on this for all those years!
Gladrial10 chapter 2 . 4/16
I have no idea what I thought this story would be about when it was recommended to me, but I can safely say THIS wasn't it! I'm laughing at myself for my naivete. The Talk is literally "the talk". How uncomfortable!

I really enjoyed Donnie's assessment of his relationship with Renet. Very honest and logical as is appropriate. But, surprisingly, more than anything I really enjoyed how well you captured Splinter. He's seriously, like my favorite thing in this so far! Who coulda guessed that?

Oh, and of course, I love the 'maybe we should have your ears checked' line in chapter one cuz how could I not? :)
princessebee chapter 19 . 4/12
There's so much to love about this chapter. It is SUCH a rollercoaster of emotions.

From my own personal mortification at Splinter's presence during this intimtate talk and OH GOD SOME OF THE THINGS HE SAYS, to the hilariousness of some of the topics and dialogue exchanges, to the chilling revelations in your concepts of mutant turtle sexuality and what they necessitate when it comes to being with someone, to the fabulous, considered and detailed concepts themselves, to the poignancy in the hints of what is yet to be fully revealed and the sad recollection of the newborn, the compelling dynamics between the brothers and their father and their very natural and authentic feeling, the range of emotions experienced here by all of them and then the laden exchange between Don and Mikey at the end with Don's confession and Mikey, Mikey, Mikey seeming as though he's just being funny old Mikey but we know he diverted the subject totally on purpose to lighten the mood... and maybe cos he's not yet fully ready to know everything Don is about.
There's a lot of complex stuff going on here... Splinter's own range of emotions... embarrassed yet interested, wanting to understand his sons, accepting that he is completely out of the loop, not the authority, his compassion and tenderness, his determination to facilitate this as it's clearly necessary. Donnie's wryness and precision, his obvious distress and frustrated apathy, his fervent advice and ashamed confessions... the way he banters so dryly with Mikey... and Mikey who is at once holding them all together with his humour and shamelessness and yet who is terribly scared by so many things going on and wanting only for it all to be okay... and determined to step up and get through this, get them all through this.

It's a fascinating and beautiful chapter, at turns hilarious, horrifying and heartwrenching!
princessebee chapter 18 . 4/12

Many of this will be stuff I've said to you in person, but here, have a record of it:

It feels quite miraculous to see this story being updated again. It was one of the first I started reading way back when and certainly had me in stitches then, was a fic I often thought of fondly in the intervening years, dazzled me with its characterisation... and I quite often came to look at your profile page and wondered if you would ever return.

well, when you come back, you come back with a vengeance!

I will review chapter by chapter here's a few of my fave bits in this one:
- the easy camaraderie between don and mike even despite the tension and the distress and the whole enormousness of what's going on (even though it isn't known to the FULL extent just yet)
- Don's weary pragmatism and assertion of his right to his sex life and the dialogue with Splinter generally, who is clearly striving hard to accept his sons adulthood and respect their privacy consequently.
- Mikey of course. Just everything about him. Especially his last few words and actions, and how he maintains a front even as he's increasingly aware there's more going on than meets the eye. His optimism and resilience.

What first really got me about this fic was the wonderful dynamics between the characters and that remains prominent, as does the lovely evocative way their speech and mannerisms are presented to us, filled with a thousand subtle details that not only create great atmosphere and vivid imagery but hint at all that's to come, that will be revealed to us. It's fabulous.

I must sleep now but I will write more reviews tomorrow.
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