Reviews for A Friend In Darkness
Luke Danger chapter 21 . 6/18
“'Bah weep graaagnah wheep ni ni bong!'” What was that; the Hypocrite’s Mandalorian, or something from Return to Ios? :D

All in all a very good chapter – I have to say, you were right. Kim did a lot better in Riddleton High than I remembered her doing. I think it was moments like Grimm saying “hey I didn’t get all weird about your school” (which, to be fair, has some meta reasons behind it) and the stumbling over the riddles (which I’m with Kim about – absolutely stupid and counterproductive from a schedule POV) more than her actually figuring them out fairly quickly as she does. If anything, I’d say Kim earned her progress in Riddleton a heck of a lot more than Grimm did in Middleton given he got the cheat sheet.

You continued the excellent trend of Riddleton being similar but different, as befits the theme with Team Probable. Yes a lot of them are many ways gender flips, but there’s the key differences. Darken has a ruthless iron fist with some genuine cruelty (could you imagine Barkin calling someone and making the /class/ call them “Miss Unknown”?), Felicia having a metal hand (“How many times have you used that line?” “And it’s still fresh!”), Cousin Mary going to the same school as Grimm, Donnie actually having a point about his rival, and so on. Wonder how long until they realize Grimm lied about Rhonda’s whereabouts?

Heck, the best part about this was probably the cheer squad, if only because it showed why Kim should have a lot more in her corner – she’s a leader (something she earned by experience) and this is also something she’s good at. It was great to have that really pay off here. Now to see if Kim’s leadership (or Grimm's lack of it causing his jealousy) factors in more – I’m hoping to be pleasantly surprised.

Which led to a confirmation of something that I had thought for a while – that Grimm hated Kim so much because of the end of ATP. I had guessed it for a long time, but it was great to see it confirmed – or maybe reaffirmed if I just forgot that bit. That really would have to grind Grimm’s gears because of the narrative he had built for himself that Kim somehow had a cheat sheet while he had to “work” for it. Hence his obsessive mind games - and Monique finally getting to drop a massive burn on him. That was a much needed sight given what it came after.

Which led to the whole BS involving GJ apparently being in cahoots with Grimm’s “leeway”. Um, okay, did Kim have too many allies or something, because if so I missed the reason to take an even bigger shot at one of her best allies. GJ not being able to move against Grimm because of the US being able to create complications that would hurt the organization? That makes some sense given GJ’s global range – they can’t irritate backing nations. Wanting to warn Kim off revealing Riddleton? Again makes sense (though why Black Ops apparently doesn’t care about Kim’s actions and only being nice because of Doctor Director seems odd – they have to realize who they’re protecting, right? Maybe it’s just how it was phrased)

But being in on it or even depending on Grimm’s intel? Especially since the given examples… why is he so special? I mean, General Probable claims that Kim is replaceable with any of his rifle squads. Okay, let’s play with the given examples and point out why that applies to Grimm.
The Transducer – um, Hench was selling that as close to open market as you can get without a billboard in NYC. Considering the jokes about how thoroughly the alphabet soup infiltrated militias, you’d think that any of them would have a dozen or more “villains” created to act as a cover to get access to such events since they’re pretty widely known amongst the villains.
Big Daddy Brotherson – why would Grimm need to tell BDB about Duff? Duff went to him to buy the fertilizer, why was Grimm needed for that? And if he was, why did they have to go to Brotherson at all to get it? I mean, the scene was supposed to be Kim managing to get the info from him, not “we already have it let’s just jump through another hoop”.

Which I guess leads me to asking about Riddleton’s security – I’m actually confused. On one hand, Kim can’t dare touch it lest all sorts of nasty stuff happen. On the other… Team Go went after Cousin Mary due to Grimm’s battle suit (why?), yet she goes to Riddleton High. How did Team Go get involved since they’re mostly local to their home city? And if it is so secret to the point the military is using covers to import the supplies they can’t produce locally, even if illegal immigrants did happen to stumble into the town why would they be let back in after going through the legal channels? I get the feeling that Riddleton’s security is as two faced as Grimm is, mostly to Kim’s detriment. Which leads to the undead horse I’ve reduced to ectoplasm several times over by now.

Speaking of that, while Enrique’s story was interesting and I’m not faulting him for trying to help Grimm because (somehow?) the two are friends so I don’t blame him for wanting to defend him, it really came off as “See how Grimm is so supportive of our immigration laws? Ignore the rest he violates!” with any attempt to point out the hypocrisy brushed off. I dunno, that rubbed me the wrong way.

But considering how great you do things like Monique’s financial issues and how it highlights great parts of both Kim and Monique’s character (Kim, despite not really being of a set up to handle such, still wants to help if she could, while Monique knows that this is outside Kim’s line of help so tries to not bother her with it), or the fireflies, that is probably why things like that put me on such a hair trigger. You do really great character work, so when certain things drop it’s that much worse, unlike something that’d be more persistently bad.

Jade and Wade’s segment was probably the best of the characterization work in the chapter. It was the lofty ivory tower in a glorious nutshell. Aggressive personalities eager to prove themselves better than their peers, criticizing the other’s work even if it is a valid alternate approach to try and make theirs seem superior - yet the answer was a mere “2”. As a Mechanical Engineering student, I know the feeling of something so complex yet the answer seems so simple. It really was some of the best characterization you could’ve done for both of them, and really hammers home how their peers are few. There was a reason Wade got so twitchy when Rufus got brain boosted past him.

And of course, Ron and Rhonda. It’s great that you actually have them figure out how to piece the veil first, but also everyone having the presence of mind. Ron knows that since they don’t know a way out, reassure their team mates. Monique realizes what they have may not last, so get as much as she can while she’s there (and a great way to phrase it “texting with fireflies” :D ), then Kim pieces together what Rufus meant way back in Wade’s lab. Capping it off, Grimm showing just how badly he feels entitled to certain things. As I’ve said before, he and Maze are a lot more alike than they realize…

Anyways, other than the usual reduced-to-glue undead horse, feeling like the writing tries to act as if Kim’s supposed to be a paladin (not sure if to write it down as “Kim has the self awareness to feel guilt” or “way too high a standard is being applied” to things like Grimm interacting with Mary), and the stuff with GJ, this really was a great chapter that took full advantage of the opportunity Riddleton provided to do something different, and a chance for some things to really shine like Kim’s leadership and cheerleading.
Luke Danger chapter 20 . 4/23
'Skin mags and drug paraphernalia? I'm a villain - not a pervert or a junkie.' Grimm could have fooled me after staring at the cheer squad from behind bleachers… :D

Anyways, this chapter… reviewing it was a long time coming, mostly because in all it feels like someone looked at Leigh Gallity, thought “Kim wasn’t broken down enough from that and Grimm needs more”, and wrote it for that. I mean, it just comes off as a chapter designed to say “Grimm is fricken awesome, Kim’s just a dime-a-dozen heroine”. Which is basically what General Probable said. So this may be a bit… ranty.

And speaking of him, here’s my answer to his nature based on this chapter (and not the bits in Graduation) – he’s Benedict Arnold, without the decency of having given great service to his country first only to be dogged by Congress and rivals. And he feeds his superiors what so-called ‘intel’ Grimm comes up with to avoid the chopping block while quietly getting rid of the much more practical avenues to the same thing.

I mean, his argument essentially hinges on “I’m a general, shut up you bleeding heart liberal”, especially since Kim does EXACTLY what he claims to do: She takes on the scum where they live. Yet it reads as if we’re supposed to side with him, especially as again all of Kim’s arguments are perfectly set up for him to destroy her further with his hypocrisy that Kim never calls out or challenges, she just… takes it. Why isn’t Kim beating General Probable with the bat of RoZ until he’s black and blue – that should more or less blacklist Grimm as an asset and utterly destroys General Probable’s argument, yet… it’s just ignored and makes Kim look weak as a result – to the point where her last promise at the end sounds completely empty and hollow when in the show it would’ve been rather terrifying.

I mean for crying out loud, why is it that the only reason that the US has a Department of Mysticism is Grimm? Why is Grimm the only way they can get their hands on all sorts of super tech? Are the numerous scientists like Cyrus Bortle or Doctor Freemen who’d love to have the government pocketbook behind their research gone? Are they somehow incapable of asking Wade for doing development for them? Why is it that they can only get it from whatever Grimm (supposedly) nicks from the villains?

Heck, if anything this chapter seems to be dedicated to the idea of destroying that Kim has actually accomplished anything, like with General Probable knocking her off as a spotlight hog when he has dozens of disposable riflemen who can do the same thing. Okay one, Kim is not a spotlight hog as described considering the times she’s irritated by being shoved out of it it’s because she’s also being attacked just like General Probable is doing now, and two: if it was so easy to foil the villains, why is it that Kim’s one of the foremost against them and the villains aren’t just being unceremoniously taken out by these supposed teams that General Probable has that can do what Kim does?

If you really want to think about it, the reason why Probable can say that the villains haven’t won despite Grimm enabling them? Because they’ve got a battle hardened cheerleader interrupting the plans all the time despite having basically be given the tools by the US government. Grimm has been biting the hand that feeds him every time, and Kim can’t stop it because then too many will suffer, so Grimm’s got a free ride (Gee isn’t that /lucky/ of him?) and they can tell themselves a nice little fiction to pretend they aren’t a bunch of sociopaths exploiting their country for personal gain.

Grimm is basically finding out that a terrorist is going to bomb a city by giving them the bomb in the city itself. All it takes is one slip up and it all goes down. Yet we’re supposed to somehow believe that Grimm is somehow stopping it. And if his mother is as good at diplomacy as General Probable is, I think America would be better served with Maverick as an ambassador. At least watching the birdie is somewhat amusing!

Heck speaking of that, Kim’s probably done more for America’s good image (and good) than the entire Probable family put together. Yet why is it that no one recognizes her? And why does Kim herself seem to think that the only people who’d really be familiar with her is people in government like the Probables or those involved with villainy – serving it like Twitch, or fighting against it, or just fans of how she supposedly tweaks Grimm.

It feels like you just got rid of Kim’s one big edge against Grimm – she’s a known person who many look up to – and got rid of it in favor of her being just a spotlighted but otherwise replaceable asset. Especially while Grimm’s being talked up at the same time or getting to show off to the point even Kim is impressed.

And Kim’s not being recognized by guys that practically brown their pants at the idea of her being around like Twitch. Actually on that, let’s get away from the rant. Everyone thinking Grimm ditched Rhonda for Kim; is there a history there that would make them think he shelled out cash for a KP cosplayer or something? Because way too many are assuming he ditched and not realizing that it’s Kim Possible right there.

Then there’s the seppuku scenario – okay, Grimm’s paranoid and it probably wasn’t meant for Kim directly… you know, until Wade found out that they planted files without him knowing it for the forgeries into his computer. Uh… so why is it that Jade’s always able to buzz Wade’s systems without him noticing, even after he realized it had happened once and would shore up accordingly?

And heck, why is it that even now Kim is falling hook line and sinker for all of Grimm’s traps? It was stupid earlier in the story where she completely forgot about it so Rhonda could make cracks about Pandaroo, it’s even stupider now since she SHOULD be on guard for Grimm pulling stuff, especially since he had shown his colors last chapter trying to bail.

Alright, I’m going to end the negativity there… it’s something that I don’t like doing on an otherwise good story, but I think it really needs to be said in an honest analysis. This chapter just sets of more huge warning flags in my mind and makes me hate Grimm and his family when this is supposed to be an elaboration on who he is, and I really have ranted enough on Grimm's legion of defenses.

On a positive note, I loved what you did with the Omo-sa’s. It would’ve been easy to have Jade be alone with a single parent and too much time, but not only did you do something different, you went and did something to tie into the greater canon. You made the Omo-sa’s rivals of Nakasumi, did something different with them, and even managed to get some great moments in like Jade calling out the fact that they’re the foreigners in America. And the fortune cookies were quite apt at highlighting Mr. Omo-sa’s personality (I’ll have to see how the one Wade thought was for Kim played out…)

So on that good job: even with my irritation, one thing I will say is that Riddleton is a (mostly) well thought out concept (addressing their supplies) and I imagine that'll be a highlight for the next chapter, how you continue to create parallels without total 1 to 1 copying.

And to end – a question. General Probable introduces Doctor Director as ‘his liaison’ – what were you meaning with that? Was Doctor Director originally just an American contribution to GJ but rose high in the ranks, or is GJ actually answering to General Probable somehow? I couldn’t really tell from the context; maybe it gets elaborated later (I certainly remember why GJ has to ‘give Grimm room’), but I don’t recall exactly what you had GJ as.
Reaper2908 chapter 12 . 1/21
I normally I don't review a story ESPECIALLY when it is already complete but I have to put this in...GRIMM IS A F*****G D**K! Still one of my favorite OC's of all time but still the guy needs...I don't even know, I am literally speechless...
Luke Danger chapter 19 . 1/18
Much shorter than the last chapter, but not lacking in substance.

Although you did show the vulnerabilities of Grimm, I was finding myself confused as to what he's supposed to be. On one hand he acts as if defeated because of Maze's claim and the fact they couldn't get him to reverse the process, to the point he is saying no one can help him. Yet at the flip side, he's gearing up to go it alone to get Rhonda back and it was a hope to save her that got him to overpower the binding of his golem enchantment to volunteer. I dunno, it just came off as confused… which admittedly could be just a show of what Grimm is at this stage; confused and not knowing how to go forward.

With Kim, I liked how she locks it down to keep a strong presence for the others because she knows that with her role, people are going to be looking up to her. So she has to keep a strong face; clearly she still thinks that they are going to get Ron back. Yet in private, she has the experience and the humanity to not only recognize the possibility that Ron might be gone for good, but also to be worried about how he's feeling at the time. She's human, but she's strong enough to keep it in control until she has the room to let her guard down, rather than decide to commit suicide (and defect) by petrification.

And in Kim’s favor there’s that moment where Grimm's all ready to prove that Kim was absolutely right in not trusting him by Grimm showing up to tell him he's out - not "we need to spread out so we don't get taken out in one go", not to discuss a future strategy, flat out leaving... after he spent an entire meeting shooting down a bunch of ideas. And Kim forces him to stick on pretty much by sheer charisma... but then Grimm immediately seizes the upper hand by forcing a shift to Riddleton.

And again, after shooting down all the ideas. I said before overall it felt like Grimm was in the lead, and stuff like him shooting down all of Kim's ideas (and getting to mock her for not knowing D&D) with rather flimsy excuses, yet the one thing he brings forward after having nothing positive to add... Kim just accepts it without even offering a basic defense?

Especially since I think the excuses against the points Kim raised were flimsy. Global Justice could, if given actionable intelligence, throw a lot of weight behind them not even related to 'heavy artillery' -which, given golems can be damaged if you do enough damage (Kim using the mundane screwdriver last chapter), might actually work if you're okay with civilians being blown to rubble. Logistics, science staff in figuring out countermeasures, intelligence operatives who could do things like check for certain markings or even remove them without necessarily having to dodge authorities, and oh yeah, a satellite network. But nope, it gets dismissed as "lol they're just meat and you need 1 bullets anyways". Yeah, if GJ had a stash of 1 bullets I wouldn't even blink. I mean, this IS the setting of giant robots, DNA hybrids, power armor in a bracelet, immersion caps, aliens, and mystical monkey power. If GJ didn't have 1 bullets, I bet they could get them easily. And even then that's just scratching the surface of the potential capabilities offered.

Or the Lotus Blade... first: HOW does Grimm know all these little details like Rufus not actually having enough MMP even though neither Ron nor Monkey Fist have done much more with the Lotus Blade than he has? And two, how does he know it doesn’t have any passive enchantments? For all he knew it was like a Holy Avenger - yes in the hands of a Paladin it's hugely powerful, but whether it's an evil sociopath like Grimm or a heroine like Kim, it's still going to be a 2 weapon with on-hit dispel when not in the hands of a Paladin. All he tried to do with it was make it change forms when he nicked it in RoZ; he never tried to slash a golem with it to see if it was a X weapon. So him just saying that Rufus wouldn't be able to and it being accepted really rubs me the wrong way – “he has the script in his pocket” wrong.

Especially since the morning after that he raises the (admittedly legitimate) point about Kim being exposed, and it's just instantly accepted. If you want a clear case of Grimm controlling the team up, this is it. He doesn't have one bad idea, but all of Kim's reasonable ideas are shot down or just used to show how she just doesn’t know things. And you know, it comes off as him trying to shoot down Kim's efforts before bailing on her. I mean even if he suspected she would just go 'forget what he said, let's check our options’, why do that for anything other than some petty grudge if you're going to be splitting the team up anyways?

It really stands out because I think there's much better reasons, and it comes off as just bashing Kim's allies and showing she somehow can’t come up with workable ideas, but Grimm apparently just has good peeps and we have to take his word for it. I mean, you didn't want GJ to crowd the fic... fair enough, but after the thrashing given to GJ last chapter was it really needed to mock them further rather than just leave it as the already established 'GJ needs more evidence to be able to act'? Or the Lotus Blade - even if Monkey Fist couldn't summon it mid-battle (after all, Ron had to resort to a magnet as Zorpox), just say that the risk of him acquiring it is extreme so it's better that they save the Lotus Blade as their reserve option if they can’t find another way to scratch out the symbols. I mean, if a mundane screwdriver can do it, an innately magical weapon almost certainly would be just fine if they didn't have another option.

And I understand why you wanted to go to Riddleton, but after that... it really could have used something more than just Grimm smugly saying he has 'good peeps' (what happened to not using the 'g' word? :P ) and it being taken as gospel. And that's not getting into the fact that Grimm basically immediately bounces back from being browbeat into sticking around when he was ready to prove why he was untrustworthy by bailing out on the team up. I think this is exactly why I didn't give Grimm being turned into a golem the weight I did on the let's read - reading it straight through, it would seem like just a blip on the radar that's quickly moved past and he’s back to normal.

But yeah, that's really the biggest thing that bothers me in this chapter. Kim comes up with reasonable ideas? Gets torn apart in a lengthy tirade with mockery for not being a nerd tossed in (especially since none of her nerdy friends are the kind to try and drag her into it if she lacks interest). Grimm just says "I don't know?" Come back tomorrow and try again. Grimm comes up with an idea? Suddenly taken as gospel even if grudgingly. Especially since Grimm acknowledging Kim was right about emet and met is just given a passing mention, while the rest of Grimm debunking Kim’s good ideas is basically a couple paragraphs.

On a better topic – good work with how Ron and Rhonda are getting used to each other and, dare I say it, becoming friends. That said, I think Ron’s probably overthinking the “I think I love you”. Kim was not only recovering from mad science amnesia, but she was also well aware of it. Really, I think it’s being taken far out of proportion… but on the flipside, I think it is a reasonable bit of angst for Ron to worry about, and with nothing to do he really can’t find a way to squash it even if he did conclude he was probably overanalyzing a choice of words by a recovering amnesic.

And as a final note – I enjoyed the little bit of ceremony for Jade’s ‘promotion’ to field ops. We didn’t get that for Wade, so it was nice to see it with Jade. Especially after reaffirming that while they’re a villainous team led by a sociopath, Team Probable trusts each other and have each other’s backs. I suspect Grimm had those clothes made in anticipation… and hoped she wouldn’t outgrow them before she got to use them :D
Luke Danger chapter 18 . 1/12
Despite primarily being focused on the main plot, this chapter gives Jade much needed focus and rounding to make her a more complex character. Yet… it doesn’t feel like the focus when it’s probably the best thing about it.

I think you really just gave Jade something more; you showed how she was alike to her teammates in assuming the worst of Team Possible and that even if she had called Grimm out on it, she too is affected by their hypocrisy. Yet it comes off more as one of several facets, in balance with a genuine desire to protect her team. Still hypocritical since as she admits to Wade had the situation been reversed she and Grimm would’ve just locked Kim up somewhere to run tests, but the fact that in the past she’s been shown to be a voice of reason her trying to protect a close friend stands out more. It felt in balance, rather than being glaringly obvious as it is when Grimm claims to be about law and order.

That said the moral dilemma of scratching it down to ‘met’, while solid, had two things undermining what was otherwise something great. First was Grimm effectively volunteering – I can understand the narrative purpose for that since either it’d take a lot of time or they’d have to force the matter which would make it look far worse on Team Possible than it really is since they’d need to restrain Jade. But still, I feel like it undercut it.

The other thing is well, if anyone is going to be the lab rat that might get killed… Grimm’s the most moral candidate to risk killing. Ultimately this is all his fault, and as he showed last chapter he would’ve joined the bad guys if they just promised him Rhonda back. If anyone should be put at risk to fix things, it’s Grimm. Now this doesn’t nullify the fact that Kim wouldn’t like the idea of killing someone no matter how vile they are, and she was right it did feel like one of his mind games. The only difference is that Grimm used himself as collateral in it for once.

But really, I think that you still had what it needed, but it stood out to me since the scene seemed to be trying to play it up as Kim possibly (… heh) making a dark choice. Though on that – Kim putting Bonnie in her place using Grimm’s tactics. Certainly something worrying; as I said before Graduation left it open enough that Kim might’ve adapted it. But well, if Kim does end up fully adopting that style that’s a powerful victory for Grimm and a defeat for Kim. After all, so far it seems to be just the ideal way. See Jade manipulating Wade to coming up with her idea for her. I’m not really peeved about it since I feel it was being used to show Jade’s fears about Grimm and to set up that admission that she was expecting a double cross since that’s what her team would’ve done, but I'll admit stuff like that would feed into the idea of Probable just being better overall.

Though on that… I know you intended Will Du to have bitterness about Kim, and he was at least entertaining by going faux-Shakespearean as Jade got testy, but it’s gone beyond “has bitterness about Kim” to flat out unprofessional and counterproductive. It started to feel like you took the rivalry and focused only on that, and ignored that he did end the episode having some (if begrudging) genuine respect and just left him locked into past seasons. That, and it felt like going out of the way to pull GJ from the story. I’ll admit I can understand why – having GJ as backup would shift the narrative more and take away from the Possible and Probable focus, but still, felt like it was just taking the piss out of GJ as well.

Doctor Director came across much better, especially since she conceded when Kim pointed out GJ has no business being skeptical about the unbelievable (COUGH Ron/Rufus Factors COUGH). Heck, Doctor Director’s concerns were perfectly valid: they just didn’t have anything actionable or verifiable enough to placate governments (never mind a worried public) when things come out, so GJ couldn’t really do much more until they had something. Admittedly, my read is somewhat colored by knowing exactly why GJ “doesn’t know” about Team Probable… but that’s something to save for when that comes up.

Grimm being restored and immediately being able to pop off a one liner kinda rubbed me the wrong way, though. Last chapter I said that I had given him being turned into a golem a lot less weight than I should have, yet now I’m starting to be reminded why I did so. Especially if I was reading it all in quick succession, it certainly would feel like being turned into a golem had just been an inconvenience for him. But I’m going to withhold my judgment until I’ve managed to read the next few chapters – see if he’s seriously affected or not by the goings on.

Of course, I can’t talk about being affected by the golem scenario without discussing Monique. I think you really got into the character there. She’s been Kim’s friend, but for the most part totally civilian. Kim was fine with that since well, not everyone’s going to recklessly jump into a net full of lasers off the cuff! But as Monique notes, being Kim’s friend only when it’s safe is not really being a good friend. The flip side of course is that Kim isn’t demanding Monique throw herself into incredible danger without good reason and is fine with her not being in combat. Yet Monique, after recovering from panicking due to a lack of experience (perfectly reasonable and it’s good that you not only showed that the freak out lasted a while, but that it’s not gone), decides to go on because she feels it’s the right thing to do. True bravery isn’t a lack of fear – that’s just being a moron. It’s going forward despite the fear. Now, all Monique needs is twenty years of training and a rocket pod packing las-cannon…

And then there’s the golems. From what’s been shown so far, my read is that the golems seem to have retained ability and honed reflex – that is, untrained civilians fight like untrained civilians, someone who’s trained fights like someone who’s trained as seen with Grimm – but they don’t have the knowledge. That is, golem Grimm was using Grimm’s training but it lacked his method of operation, hence why it was all brute force through Monkey Kung Fu, or how golem Shego was unaware of her powers until Drakken pointed it out yet could still use them. Which raises a question – where is the knowledge based on? So far, it’s reading like the limitations are Maze with him as the imprint – after all, Maze outright says he didn’t expect Shego to retain the ability. Thus while Maze also knows something about fighting, the golems he commands to fight wouldn’t necessarily know how they fought before being petrified.

Although Jade was the one who shined the most, the chapter was really one of figuring out. The golems, the jamming, the way to free golems. But it’s all reasonable deductions. The thought process is shown, and it’s reasonable conclusions. Kim found them? Drakken may have tipped them off. He didn’t, but he realized that the symptoms of the jamming could be scanned for. Kim is out of power on the battle suit? Start using the booster soles as an alternative attack boost – now that’s clever, innovative, and the kind of thing Kim would think up pressed into a corner as she was. And a nice show of how the bad guys don’t care about collateral – Drakken only asks about damage to the golems because that’s lost efficiency, not any real particular care about not accidently turning innocents to rubble getting them out of MGG!

Overall? A really solid chapter and while I have my issues, most of those are not really of the chapter itself.
Luke Danger chapter 17 . 12/8/2016
Whoo, what to say about this one? A lot about Grimm, I think, but also ironically (for what I've said before) about how The Return of Zorpox, here, helps the story.

Namely, a subtle comparison that gives Kim a unique and brilliant form of victory that I think I missed by not looking at this in slower detail and taking time to process it. Back in RoZ, Grimm had pretended that he destroyed Ron's good side, more or less locking the lovable buffoon into being Zorpox. And he did it convincingly as he went through the effort to create a mock up of Ron's good side - all the indicators of it not being so were out-of-universe. Yet does Kim break down into a wreck begging for him to fix it somehow? Does she surrender? Nope. She just starts punching Grimm's daylights out, and then trucks on through the whole mission despite it.

Grimm tries to torture information out of Maze, gets told "no", and starts to fall apart to the point of begging the bad guys to bring her back and saying they would have helped despite all his insistences that he wouldn't have (or the fact Rhonda probably wouldn't want to). And becomes a nervous wreck that can only lie there in self pity for a situation that, I think, he understood was entirely his fault. And that he could have avoided it had he just not been such a cold sociopath. While perhaps Maze did at least make it convincing, Grimm also has done this very tactic and he could have perhaps written it off as Maze just not knowing it's possible (which is always a possibility). Now perhaps at first he might initially believe him, but well... for all he knew Maze had a really awesome poker face despite being beaten on, and as everyone forewarned it wasn't like Maze would be eager to bring Rhonda back or do so lightly.

It's an interesting contrast. Kim is far more stable emotionally that she can hunker down and move forward from despair making tatters of her heart - it was very clear that it's not that Kim didn't love Ron (no matter what Grimm insists in his petty grudge), she just locked it down to focus on the task at hand. The battle is straight up ongoing, and Grimm just fell apart allowing despair to overwhelm him to the point he was ready to commit suicide.

And unlike villains like Darth Vader who died at least trying to do something right at the end, Grimm didn't really do a lot. Yes he stopped Kim from taking the petrification, but in the process also gave Maze and Monkey Fist a new weapon. Sure I bet someone could argue that was Grimm's surrender - just become a golem and be on the winning side even if it's as an unfeeling construct, but personally? I doubt that highly. It's more likely he did it calculating that Kim would at least take revenge for him... but again, that's assuming he was calculating. I doubt he was. It really came across that he just gave up and decided to take a convenient way out while it was around.

In some ways, it was really a kind of utter failure that Grimm sorely needed, and definitely something I think I should have given more weight too in past analysis... but then again, given how he acts later I do at least feel there was a reason it didn't stand out nearly as much to be when I wasn't going through in detail. But, just like with Vader, one good act doesn't erase all sins, and Grimm's are legion. Still, it was humanizing.

Heck if I had any complaint about Grimm's melt down, it was that Kim was in no position to see or hear how it happened. That I think is really why Kim feels so toothless - we as readers know there's so many buttons Kim could be pressing, but she isn't able to find them whereas Grimm got the instruction manual gift wrapped for him at basically no effort.

But speaking of villains, Monkey Fist being a former shot put thrower is an oddly humanizing thing for ol' hairy hands... definitely like bits like that, and hope either to see a few more with Maze either in this story or the future as I think Maze could use some stuff like that.

And on that, I did like that you made sure to set up Kim being exposed to the petrification - Kim just tanked a pile driver and a charge - the fact she was able to stand at all was impressive. Much better than just her gasping as Drakken's powering up the anti-tank laser slowly as he gloats (though I'm willing to forgive that as being drawn out for dramatic effect)

And on that, such an escalation also fit. As long as Kim would only stumble on them occasionally, it was okay to let her keep going away. It kept a low profile and left her flustered; after all Kim suddenly vanishing would get many more eyes looking towards them. But by compromising their exit strategy and coming in with intent rather than chance, they know that going forward every encounter gives her more opportunities to find the fatal blow. And since she's interfering with their exit, turning her into a golem is actually now their best bet as they can then leverage Kim's disappearance and keep her golem self in reserve as a terror weapon to be their vanguard - a show of power that they took the world's likely best shot against them and made her their mindless servant. But they achieve similar with Grimm... just have him do it.

The only other thing I really have to say is Grimm's constant hypocritical jibes... yeah, it's an undead horse at this point, but well... yes Kim had ditched Ron at times, but he also ditched her back plenty of times. Royal Pain, Ron Millionaire, the Ron Factor (and that had a nice side order of "screw you Kim you aren't even a major contributor to your own success), and to a lesser extent Grande Size Me... so either Grimm is willfully ignoring it to try and turn on the pain against Kim, or he forgot it because it doesn't fit his narrative. Neither of which gives his argument any credence.

But on the upside, Kim finally called out the fact that he's projecting onto her things that aren't true, or if they are true he has warped that truth until it has become a lie based on a truth. And then Monique shut him up with Grimm giving a response that really highlights that yes, Monique was right about Grimm's maturity.

So yeah, overall? A really good chapter. Yeah still has some of the stuff that just has me rolling my eyes, but it also finally gave Grimm some much needed comeuppance with no immediate caveat. Grimm lost his edge, however temporarily, with no questions asked.
Luke Danger chapter 16 . 11/22/2016
'Problem?' came a smooth voice from behind him.
[Maze’s Troll Face Intensifies]

But yeah… a more talkative chapter, but one that neatly gets the metaplot back on rails from the last one. So what to say?

First, Grimm and seeming to bounce back and forth. Is Grimm afraid of his rep being tarnished by working with Kim to get Rhonda back, hence why he treats it as a “deal with the angels” in his words? Or is he confident he can spin it, hence going through anyways and then leaving a calling card. Grimm even seems to think it would hurt after saying he could spin it off, but then when he’s nicely in the clear he goes ahead and leaves the hint. Seems almost like a flip-flop. And tied to that; I had a funny realization. The reason he hates Kim so much is that she turned his own game against him way back in ATP… yet here he is trying to ‘train’ her to be more like him, as if somehow it’s not going to bite him in the butt someday. I can easily imagine him being mad at Kim doing his thing to him after this…

Though on that, thinking some more I could see Kim doing the salt thing on Gill, either if she knew beforehand that ultimately it would just subdue him and would not cause any permanent damage like it would to frogs and wouldn’t be excessively cruel, or as a reaction shot where she has no time to think just do something to stop Gill from viscerally hurting Monique or someone. Is it just the fact it was Grimm doing it, or something else?

Either way, I found Kim insisting she only defends herself odd, and that she seems to be unusually passive and almost pacifistic. I mean, Kim never aims to kill - but she sure as heck is ATTACKING given she often has to in order to stop the schemes. She’s taken the first swing at henchmen quite often. Likewise, ‘rough stuff’. I know that by that Kim means things like all the fun torture stuff like waterboarding or making the guy chew on broken glass, but it just comes off as just not wanting to hurt someone at all. That seems disconnected from the Kim in the show, especially since it comes in to set up Grimm harping on the kick in STD (which in context and with what Kim knows or has reason to suspect makes sense the same way Kim slugging Drakken did… Kim thought Shego was in on Eric and was still making cracks about it, to say nothing of all the prior incidents of Shego trying to kill Kim likely boiling up in her mind at the moment to set that powder keg off)

But even with that, you did use Grimm for something brilliant – Barkin. Most characters have no reason to dig into Barkin’s subbing – it’s just getting Barkin’d again. Grimm has every reason to given his insane control freak tendencies (and he gives Kim grief about it not being done ‘her way’), just because he might be someone who could interfere with his psychological games. I mean you had a brilliant explanation that not only makes sense but also adds a level of depth to Barkin – not just the idea of him being parental towards Team Possible or perhaps was trying to keep them from letting their missions become arrogance (hi there Grimm!), but just the idea that Barkin has the intelligence to organize such a conspiracy and keep it secret despite basically the whole faculty being in on it. A lot of conspiracy theories fall apart at how many people have to be in the know and utterly silent about it… so for Barkin to pull that off, that’s impressive.

Mind, on the flipside I kinda feel like you went for too mundane an explanation. I mean I do not think it’s a bad explanation, but… this is a school where you’ve got the cheerleader who often comes into homeroom having saved an ambassador in Abu Dhabi or stopping a doomsday device, her twin brothers who make anti-matter in the garage (with barely even raised eyebrows), several students who go to an underground robot fight club including one queen of the science fair who could rip open a dimensional portal with a prototype and some batteries, and then there’s Felix with the cyber-robotic wheelchair that would make Tony Stark do a double take. So teachers getting into all sorts of hijinks that takes them out of class is… pretty much par the course for the setting given the rogue’s gallery and casual supertech. But that’s really a personal preference – as I said, the explanation is brilliant in a rather apt way that’s great for Barkin’s character.

Speaking of Grimm, at last there’s indications that maybe Rhonda being gone is actually affecting him poorly. It’s easy to miss that with how Grimm keeps staying on the top bunk with the contest or running circles around Middleton High. And that Grimm missed the vision when he was basically praying for exactly what happened, whereas Kim felt and saw it when she wasn’t expecting it at all? And it ties back to Sakituya’s warnings – Grimm expected to be given something men much better than him had. Well, in this case, a woman much better than him saw something he wanted… while he just missed it happening.

Also; Grimm comes off as a stalker with how he comes in to try and play Kim telling Bonnie off as her becoming like him. Personally though I wouldn’t call Kim making a passive threat to Bonnie acting like Grimm – context matters, and it was Kim slapping Bonnie’s wrist for putting down the rest of the squad. She basically just chose to use a softer option than yelling at her to shut up. I mean it has the ability to be potent moment of ‘perhaps Kim is more like Grimm than she’d like’… if Grimm hadn’t been milking anything that he could spin into a “see how I’m right?”

The best part I think about that thread is that Graduation was open ended enough that in theory, Kim could have adopted Grimm’s tactics more thoroughly for dealing with Bonnie. After all, in Graduation it’s a point where Kim’s threat of kicking her off the cheer squad would have expired due to graduating, so Bonnie’s free to be back to her old self and there isn’t much to contradict it.

Though, I really find myself liking the spirit world scenes more than I did in my first readthrough. In part I think it’s because I know how this affects Rhonda overall, but also just because it is such a breath of relief in that it’s an actual back and forth. Plus, just Ron actually being able to help… yeah, he’s handling a crying woman just fine, don’t think he needs Kim’s advice.

I also really liked having something that Team Possible brings to the table – the Dementor mission before RoZ - actually be brought up by one of their members and then Wade successfully builds the detection device. Really glad to see that I had misremembered who led the charge on that; hopefully I’ll be more surprised in the future.

On that scene - Jade may want to think through her statement that people should have just paid ransom to Dementor, though… then again he job would be a lot easier if nations were that spineless. And they aren’t, since well… if it wasn’t Kim launching the raid, it’d be someone’s special forces division kicking the door in. Plus, blaming Kim for Dementor going ‘knock out the satellites’ is like blaming a cop for a terrorist suicide bombing a sparse crowd when he can’t escape with a bioweapon meant to be used in a major attack on a densely populated city. But hey, Jade needs her flaws too and the only reason Wade didn’t finish the retort was he actually had figured out what they need to do, so it’s all good.

And on the topic of Jade and Dementor, the other villains. You got Drakken down to a T, I think. It’s often frought with accidents, but he gets the job done. Maze’s above troll face… and Monkey Fist nicely mediating. Not enough manpower? Abduct more manpower! I think you really got them down with a good solid chemistry and they play off each other nicely. Not happy with each other, but able to work together professionally to achieve the scheme.

So yeah, overall a good chapter that I didn’t have a lot to complain about, and some of that is more just personal preference than anything actually bad. Just plenty of words to type about it.
Luke Danger chapter 15 . 10/30/2016
So, like the last chapter filler but the good kind - an opportunity to explore something that wouldn't likely happen otherwise.

The thing is, it was complete and utter full spectrum dominance by Probable across the board. That 'mission files' excuse has really overstayed its welcome. I mean seriously, I'm expected to believe that Kim put in all the details of what she and Bonnie were doing to each other at Gottagrin in the mission file? That even now Jade can still tap into them at will and still rubbing it in? At this point it's basically excuse for Grimm to brag and put Kim down over everything, while Kim never gets anything like that to retaliate with.

Which this chapter seemed to be non-stop. Who's the one who calls going to Wannaweep a waste of time and is right (even though really in absence of other leads you might as well)? Who found a lead just by standing around while actually searching turned up nothing? Who basically was acting like a teacher to someone about a topic they had far more knowledge of than the teacher who only just learned of it, and basically wasn't even mutually coming to it but just leading them along to the right answer and also turning basic pattern recognition into "oh you're becoming like me"? Who shanks Monique with a syringe and walks off scot free instead of getting his face pounded in for attacking one of Kim's friends, and ultimately was right to do so because hey, Monique had that stuff in her blood? Who gets to evade Gill's entire security and not get pinned down and thus gets to rescue Kim and then does so further when really Kim didn't /need/ that flashbang or the detpack to go off since Gill was out of it at that point anyways. And of course, who got to actually take Gill down while Kim went to save her friends?

It's just... wow, Grimm just took the whole mission over when this is supposed to be Kim's mission. I mean she's still the fighter we know and admittedly she was in the bind more due to Monique getting nabbed than anything (plus that wasn't too bad, Monique got caught off guard for a mere moment and got tackled by a goon who was already probably going for her), but... yeah. Grimm just had full spectrum dominance over the mission. It wasn't "what if Kim had Grimm for support and what does he bring to the table", he basically did the whole dang mission and did it in a way that screamed "I'm better than you and you'll never be equal to me, I'm so much better I'm schooling you in things that I have only just learned about while you've had plenty of experience in".

I mean the idea is great - Grimm does bring some toys that Kim normally wouldn't have to play like his psychological warfare (and that was a great scene). It's just that by the time we got to where Grimm actually should be better than Kim... it's gotten to the point where it's the nanomorphed cherry on an EcoLa sundae, rather than actually being "this is what Grimm is brilliant at".

Personally? I would've had it a lot more with Kim taking the lead. Sure have Grimm whine and moan at how she operates but at least have her right fairly often and have her being the one bringing him and Jade up to speed or plotting the course forward. Have Grimm learn from that to, eventually, pull off his psychological warfare and have that be used as the unique angle of attack with Grimm present. Yes Kim could do it in other ways, but with Grimm she now has this option of attack. Because really? Most of the stuff Grimm does this chapter that matters could have been done by other characters.

I mean I certainly can't complain about having a default character, but even then it's important to spread it out, especially if it's supposed to be a /team/ effort like this alliance is supposed to be. Not "Grimm Probable needed some extra muscle because he got Rhonda banished to the abyss"

So, rant over. And I should be fair and admit you have a reverse of this later, but it wasn't as one sided in Kim's favor. But we'll see how it is when I get there; maybe it was more one-sided in Kim's favor than I remembered, but the Sitch in Slime was certainly far more in Grimm's favor than I remembered.

Well enough about my constant hate of Grimm. What was good about this?

First, Gill. He was really underused in the series, but you also gave him a great angle that fit his canon self, nicely blended his past iterations together, but also had a reasonable escape explanation (much better than Camille just shapeshifting into a guard and walking out :D ). And his scheme was good - poison people by a product, take advantage of hardcore advertising and such, then let the mutations happen. Admittedly I do think maybe you should have made it clear it only became really noticeable just then so it didn't seem like Kim was missing something obvious (even if you did supply a good excuse for that), but that's a nitpick compared to the rest.

I mean, the only real hole in his plan is... did he really think Kim and Monique would join him after getting mutated rather than turn their mutations against him? Or that people in general would? Personally, I headcanon that Gill has a pseudo-mind control element in his slime. Nothing like the Compliance Chip, just enough they can't actually threaten him, but I don't know if you have something similar. And to be fair if he doesn't have that in his mutagens, it's actually a good hole in the plan to have and fits Gill's mindset of the mutations being power.

Which brings me to his goons - that actually was a great way to do it. It's easy to just say Gill found followers, but you actually went into a pretty plausible reason for Gill to find converts to his mutations. Honestly if anything, you probably could have afforded to at least mention there were some perks to their mutations. Have Kim note that while they were as bad as the usual goons, they did have a bit more toughness to them. Not enough she couldn't overcome it, but enough that she appreciates the difference and recognizes it. Then show it with Kim having to struggle a bit with a few of them, make it clear that Gill actually was enhancing his goons so they aren't just a palate swap of the usual fare.

And what makes this a great thing to have just around Halloween... Gill making people drink his puke and then moving on to rubbing it onto their skin? Jeez... less I think about that the better, huh? Monique was suitably freaking out about it... yeah I'd want all the detox I can get too if I found out that was in my blood stream.

Speaking of Monique, I did like how you got across that this isn't battle hardened Monique that we saw in A Sitch in Time (nice pun for the title, by the way). It's easy to forget that she's one of Kim's most civilian friends who still ends up involved sometimes, especially since really most of the time Monique just sits back as Kim goes into it (October 31st) or just leaves mid-mission (Kimmination Nation). But she actually had a pretty good showing too given that - if that goon hadn't tackled her she probably could have handled Camille since the shock was just momentary but Monique already knew what she was dealing with.

Also, I noticed this chapter completely lacked a spirit world scene, or one with the villains. So even more than the last chapter, this really was a break from the metaplot other than Grimm trying to make Kim edgier, which would really persist regardless. So a real solid break to do something you wouldn't have an easy chance to do again later.
Luke Danger chapter 14 . 10/30/2016
... did Monique just threaten to shove Dibble's microphone up his rear end? Heh. Well, best start on that 20 years eh?

Anyways, while this chapter was filler, but I think it's the right kind. As you noted - Grimm at Middleton High. What possibilities (heh) can happen there? And as far as how it could of gone, I think it went fairly well.

The main issue I think was how easily Grimm seems to take over without much effort - it's Jade who digs up all the information, after all. I mean, he cows Bonnie (for now), gets Dibble off Kim's back (and honestly I still think Grimm gave Dibble the lead in the first place or was even feeding him info to run his mudslinging campaign) by threatening to reveal his /interesting/ history of things (Leather Ninjas? Alien Autopsy? Yikes), and on top of that has buttered up Barkin (intentionally or not) and has all the girls drooling over him.

I feel like the main problem is that it doesn't feel like Grimm has earned that. I mean his playing of Bonnie was great and fits his style, but I feel like he needed to do more than just have Jade get him a bio list on everyone. Especially since it keeps harping up that really quite irritating "Grimm can get all the info on Kim, Kim has nothing" which really feeds into how he keeps getting in barbs yet Kim can't put some serious retorts in because the reverse isn't true. Personally, I probably would have had Grimm doing HUMINT and such - have him mingle a bit, play off his new guy angle to learn about things, /then/ start the manipulating. At least then it would feel more like Grimm's actually working to get it, rather than just have Jade e-mail him the script.

But while it was overall a load of Probable supremacy, it wasn't completely so and the verbal sparring was quite improved. I mean Grimm's pushing a lot of buttons calling Kim dishonest (go on Grimm, make me laugh harder at your hypocrisy), but Kim actually got to fire back pretty well and it was an actual back and forth that you could, maybe, say Kim came out slightly ahead on since she got to hit him with the big egg in the face compared to her missions - the risk.

Kim only has to worry about the villains' schemes if she fails... and given how many of them try to kill her even if only with a slow and elaborate death trap, if she fails there's good odds she won't be around to suffer for it. Grimm? He succeeds, he has to hope that the scheme fails because if it doesn't he could be caught in it. The very same thing that freaked Rhonda the heck out with after BTK.

And speaking of Rhonda, this chapter really excelled in making her distinct from Grimm - not just the contrast between her and Grimm interacting with their counterparts, but the Jar Jar Binks thing (she likes him? Good for her) is actually hilariously on the mark. I mean think about it - both are comic relief characters who get serious moments (Rhonda with the GBS, Jar-Jar with convincing Padme that it's worth going home to take a stand), both genuinely try to help (even if it really isn't helping at all), oh, and both got sociopaths into positions of power :P

But the real thing was her reaction to the whole halfiversery thing. I mean let's be fair to Ron, Memory Blank took place over a few days and they had things going on so I can forgive him for forgetting, but I also think you really did something to highlight Rhonda and Grimm's ship. Yes, Grimm is getting Rhonda nice things fairly often, but... I can't help but wonder if that's raising a difference between Probable and Possible. Kim and Ron don't need the material goods, Grimm feels that he has to keep the gifts coming. I mean, what was Grimm's reaction to Jade being warped by the Transducer - IE, his fault? "Dang, need to send her a Bundt cake".

For Rhonda? In Ron she's seeing what could go horribly wrong with something she barely has - I mean, she had to keep Kim occupied in a very flashy battle for Grimm to stop thinking about missions for five minutes just to spend time with her. She sees Ron at risk of a similar thing and is warning him against it, trying to get him to do something nice for Kim when they get out of it. It's... a really solid way to grow Rhonda's character sympathetically, yet also I think raises a question. Are Rhonda and Grimm really in love, or is there delusion with both of them about what love is? Does Grimm think he's in love but is unwittingly stringing her along for the backup? And Rhonda, is she a nice girl who fell into the wrong crowd? Heck, that explanation of Rhonda really balances how she seemed to swing from bad guy in the first two to a rather timid but nice person in BTK, or all those pics of Grimm looking evil while she's looking uneasy.

And to be fair, Grimm is at least now in the right direction with making an alliance. It's just, well... he's doing the right thing horribly wrong. By this point he must have realized that if Kim is going to trust him, she needs to know he isn't playing mind games. And really I think it ties into the above - Grimm sees life as a game, and to game companion influence you gotta do things they approve of and Grimm's trying to do it by making her life easier and tweaking off foes.

The main problem is, well... it makes it come off as what Kim works for, Grimm just gets. In less than 36 hours, Probable basically wiped away the Dibble subplot and for now pacified Bonnie. Thing is? It makes it seem like him trying to make Kim edgier and into a Team Impossible kind of operative (or worse, gender bent him without the morality switch) seem like he's just right as the circumstances allow him to be proven right, yet Kim is mostly limited to pointing out that there's a lot more good people than Grimm accounts for and that people can do things that seem wrong because it's the right thing to do.

In some ways its almost an argument of Rousseau and Hobbes, with Kim as the former and Grimm the latter. Thing is, so far Hobbes is the only one who's being shown to be right. Especially since Grimm got the rides too, though admittedly that could just be Grimm pays them for it and the "least I could do after X" is both parallel and maybe a little justification as to why they're going out of their way to provide the lift.

Yet it was also, I think, why Leigh is such an infuriation in hindsight. Kim's main strength over Grimm is just what she says - good reputation and the trust of those who have basic human decency. She has allies and good ones, whereas all Grimm has outside of kin and his team is a bunch of clients who probably wouldn't help him out if he needed it short of pay or blackmail. Yet... it got handwaved away rather haphazardly by Leigh and never came up again since the whole thing was dropped.

Also... Nick Tragg, really? I mean it's clear you knew it was a knock-off of Brick so I'm not really fussed about it, but I couldn't help but groan at it. Still, I honestly think disproportionate revenge should be on the table at a later date. After all, such is a staple of villainy and well... Zorpox.

Though admittedly it does bring up a similarity, doesn't it? The differentiation between high school and 'serious'. Bonnie and the jocks were high school evil not worth it, Shego or the missions are. Though on that... Kim's not a paladin, so honestly I'm not sure Kim should be angsting over enjoying Probable getting some minor comeuppance on the way like his babysitting of Hana. Especially since he's been on her tail all day... speaking of that, are you trying to make Grimm out to be a stalker? Felt like it.

But one last thing... I do like how Grimm's butt kissing to Barkin is actually also a very nice foreshadowing to his father. And it's the best kind - you don't know it first time, but then you see the payoff and it all clicks together. Always fun to find those bits.
Luke Danger chapter 13 . 10/25/2016
Grimm looked surprised. 'Apologize?' he said. 'For what? For not letting her hit me enough?'

Well, to copy-paste the list from my Let's Read of this...

Safford Base, kidnapping Ron, [Attitudinatoring] Ron, unleashing Zorpox the Conqueror knowingly, aiding and abetting Zorpox the Conqueror in [morality flipping] everyone except her, Grimm, Rhonda, and Rueful, pretending to destroy part of Ron’s very person for petty revenge and then insulting her over it, implying that Kim doesn’t care about Ron because he hid the aforementioned fake when he ‘stood aside’ knowing Kim had this little pressing matter of stopping Zorpox, faked being defeated so Zorpox could slap a modulator on the battle suit, beat down Sensei, continued to aid Zorpox despite knowing his friends (and by extension family) are being affected by the Transducer, only revealing Ron’s actual good side as a get out of jail free card and rubbing it in while also establishing that yes he did all that for petty revenge, numerous thefts including using Rhonda as his bludgeon and organizing Adrena Lynn’s heists (and probably backing Dibble too given he knew far too much and is on an anti-KP crusade), helped Monkey Fist and Maze, constantly escapes justice, and then there was the last chapter which could fill a whole book in how much jerk there is.

Yeah, nothing to apologize for…

Anyways, while some could call this chapter damage control for the... interesting last chapter, I can see what you wanted to do. The problem I think is that it wasn’t shown very well, best summed up best by Mr. Dr. P: no matter what, Grimm is after the one-liner to gain a local sense of supremacy, the biting remark to put the other person down. In other words, he has to have the edge even when it should hurt him.

Which is a big part of it - I get mixed messages. Last chapter Grimm was doing everything to be a jerk and in the past was clearly meant to be the bad guy, yet now we're supposed to suddenly feel bad for him because Rhonda is missing? Yet... who has been going after leads actively and fighting to get their significant other back, and which one just shuffled off to a hidden cave to beg for divine intervention with a sense of entitlement for it happening even though it was his fault?

But more than that, I think, is the fact that Grimm wins *despite* the fact that he has done everything to ruin it and it is only because Kim knows he is holding back information until an alliance is agreed on. You hint that maybe Kim could have felt sympathy to sway her. That might've worked, but the problem is that when she sees it she already had resolved to shake the devil's hand, that was basically window dressing. Sure, you could call it a 'victory' for Kim by taking the moral high ground, but it isn't really a victory for her because it's really more Kim bending over so the plot isn't derailed by Grimm's arrogance.

I mean, even JADE was pissed about it! If you want a nail in Grimm's BS "I trust my teammates while Kim doesn't" argument, the fact he basically ignored Jade’s warnings and didn’t try to consult her about something he isn’t too good with. But the important thing that makes her callout work? It knocks him off his edge – the same thing that made the last chapter very difficult because Grimm clearly had the edge even when he was being turned into a smear on the ground.

Ironically the set up means that it's really only Grimm's teammates who can actually deliver the barbs properly. You make so much noise about how open Kim is and thus Grimm basically has watched the series so he's got all that to use. Kim is… *hobbled* by the fact she has nothing despite her best efforts. Jade, on the other hand, can put a torpedo in the G/Rh's starboard bow where it hurts because she knows Grimm quite well.

And let's be fair, that bit about BTK was a torpedo Grimm could have avoided had he just not been such a freak about being missions 24/7 as we saw. It's basically a point where it is all Grimm's fault and now he feels the heat, brief as it is and lost in the fact that ultimately Grimm won the metaplot point in spite of himself. Which kinda makes it bittersweet; yeah Grimm's finally getting some real comeuppance that he can't deflect away with "Monkey Fist had new damage reduction I couldn't bypass", but the overall plot of the chapter is ultimately Grimm winning not by any virtue of his own, but Kim taking a deal she really did not want to take because she knows Grimm is holding out on information and she's out of leads despite having done more than Grimm in trying to find Ron.

Kim’s angst made sense and it was what you promised, but I do feel the need to point out that Shego had tried to kill Kim numerous times and as far as she knew, Shego was fully involved in Drakken's scheme with Eric. It was the spark to a rather large barrel of gunpowder. Was it something Kim should not have done? Maybe. But Kim isn’t a Paladin or Jedi, and it's hard to blame Kim for it either... or her wanting Grimm to suffer (or Ron thinking that Rhonda deserves it, given his knowledge). Also, minor errors in the flashback, but hey error in recalling the moment?

While it is a long story, but I do think you missed out on an opportunity to have Kim and Grimm describe the last chapter in their words and use how they describe it or what details are used highlight the differences. Admittedly it might be padding, but I feel like it would be a case of /good/ padding.

I do think this chapter also highlights why I like the rest of Team Probable more than Grimm. They are round characters with other facets (sometimes it feels like Rhonda flips between evil and just in the wrong crowd) or at the very least have a sense of self-awareness (Jade in her call out of Grimm). Grimm is… well, Grimm, and basically the same throughout. And that same is ‘prick’.

Onto some wholly positive things - I did like how you randown all the relevant plot technology from the show and explained why it's no good here, even elaborating on things like Dimension Twist (really good explanation, BTW). Sure it could be called 'neutralize Kim's assets, AGAIN', but I feel like this time it makes sense because you actually gave solid and logical reasoning. Admittedly reasoning that could be gotten around later like having dimensional coordinates, but that just means it would be a case of setting up now, wouldn't it? Plus, Grimm’s assets were similarly knocked out beforehand with the unresponsive GBS (gee, I wonder why it isn’t answering Grimm?)

The other thing was Ron and Rhonda – it’s both a great way to develop Rhonda’s character (Graduation, I think, wouldn’t make sense without it) but it also acts as a very nifty way to break up the Kim and Grimm drama. Plus, touching on Rhonda’s fears of what would happen to them. I still maintain the “Rhonda being poked at by a pitchfork constantly” view of it, but it’s also a matter of, well… Team Probable got away with a lot, yet Rhonda actually got punished for it whereas Grimm hasn’t. Yet it isn’t “haha look at the evil witch burn”, it’s treated as horrible. Especially since, well, round character, Rhonda isn’t constantly evil. I dunno, it’s just a lot more effective at making Rhonda sympathetic compared to Grimm’s whining.

So yeah. This chapter was pretty good and I think more of what you needed the tone to be in the previous chapter, yet the end result is I think part of what makes the last chapter such a problem - especially on a reread. I know that DESPITE the last chapter, Grimm gets what he wants. And this chapter makes it clear it is only because of Kim being willing to take one for Ron that it happens. Makes you wonder who the real lucky one is… it ain’t Kim.
Luke Danger chapter 12 . 9/28/2016
So after weeks I finally got around to this chapter. RAGE is likely to seep in, but I’ll try to minimize it to useful criticism.

But first, the good parts. Maze and Monkey Fist continued to be great villains and I really like the dynamic – it is a balance of fear, but there is enough mutual respect in there that it’s easy to see them working together and for Maze to trust Monkey Fist when he says they need a third wheel despite his reservations. And you acknowledge very well their limits like doing it too much will not just let GJ zero in on them, but another thing: the more they do it in small stages, the more people get desensitized to the threat’s impact. To really work they need everyone on the same ‘what is that’, not ‘okay, same as before but on a larger scale’.

And likewise their plan to recruit Drakken – in one move by turning Shego into a golem they first give Drakken a taste of the power being offered, take out his best combatant to resist them, AND get a show of force all in one. Then they let Drakken stew with some time to work with it… oh, and they also leave a nice threat to what happens if Drakken betrays them on top of that. Really, a lot of good in one move… and of course Drakken proceeds to forget the LAST TIME he had Shego put an apron on…

The other bit was Ron and Rhonda reassuring themselves that they weren’t dead… and the idea of them hooking up. Hmmm… narratively, Rhonda is supposed to be Ron but gender flipped… so would that make the two of them hooking up the strangest case of narcissism?

But there was also the data chip – which I think was really the best way to sum up the differences between Kim and Grimm, and what kind of worlds they are built for. Grimm is built for the cynical cutthroat world where everyone wants to screw you over even in an act of good faith. Kim is of a world that has this thing called basic human decency. The thing is, Grimm can handle being in what Kim’s built for merely coming off as paranoid. Kim would be dead in this… and you changed the rules on Kim so that it would favor Grimm without at least the decency of giving Kim a chance to cope or at least an ally who can cover until she learns. Which leads to the bad parts of this massively…

I know you meant for this to be a fifty-fifty; Grimm wins psychologically, Kim gets the physical win by creaming him… but I have to ask: did you word count how long Grimm’s monologues of psychological put downs was compared to Kim’s “victory” in physical combat? Grimm got to spend the entire chapter putting Kim down, calling her somehow incompetent or unable or that she only wins by luck (look who’s talking with what he has going for him…)… and calling in a lawyer on her. Kim gets a single line of beating him up.

Really, this chapter is basically Kim’s agency being destroyed piece by agonizing piece as Grimm waltzes into Kim’s home, throws insults, won’t leave, and when she tries to make him he just deftly avoids every blow and to really add insult to injury steals a cookie from the jar and then takes Wade hostage with NO EFFORT. Nothing goes right for Kim except for a single one-liner about seniority when determining archvillains.

Otherwise Grimm gets to call all her adventures “loser missions that don’t compare to this” when the ONLY difference between this is the villains involved and the level of caution… and the thing is? I could say the same about Grimm – heck it’s even worse because in almost every case all Grimm has to do is get the goods and run away. Kim usually has to win the fight outright to bring the bad guys down and stop their scheme.

I mean if Grimm just had one phase of it or there was more of an actual back and forth, maybe… but Grimm just *monologues* and *monologues*, getting paragraphs to Kim getting a sentence or two… and he does nothing to try and warm her up to the idea of a team up (which as the proposer is on him to make agreeable), all he does is keep insulting her and putting her down and just being an obtuse self-entitled prick.

And then you bring in Leigh Gallity… you know how quite a few fans were angry with Bonnie’s lack of comeuppance in Homecoming Upset after her cheating? She basically took an American ideal and trashed it – on a petty scale, yes - and did it with no effort. The ideal of one’s voice as an individual having meaning, rejected. This is what Grimm is doing, except to a far wider appeal – the idea of justice and rule of law. Grimm says he’s all about law and order? HA! Wait he’s serious? LET ME LAUGH EVEN HARDER!

You mentioned that you could have continued the thing with Leigh by finding a good lawyer for Kim and a judge who isn’t corrupt. While that would have eaten a lot of time… I think that actually might have helped because this is the last word on the matter. Kim just… well she doesn’t admit it, but she just lets Grimm win it because it never comes up again. All of Kim’s deeds, all those she’s helped, everyone she’s saved from villains… that should have helped her here means nothing, while Grimm got that C&D that makes it clear that Leigh isn’t blowing how air.

Where is the Kim Possible who can wrestle a shark with her bare hands? Where is the Kim Possible who scoffed at three mercenaries with Grimm’s pay rate and matched them in barbs before wiping the floor with all three of them in combat? Where is the Kim Possible that reduced Bonnie to crying by pure charisma – you can’t say that’s her dump stat… Wisdom maybe, but not Charisma. Just… where is Kim’s agency at all?

Before you say “her beating up Grimm”… that wasn’t Kim’s agency. Here, lemme quote directly…

‘And suddenly Grimm spread his arms out, standing in front of her, his eyes and his face swallowed in a calm as icy and cold as Kim's expression was hot and furious.’

He LET HER beat him up. Before that he was the one landing hits on her, not the other way around. As he put it himself, he reduces Kim to being a yelping chihuahua on his heels. That’s not a physical victory for Kim, that’s Grimm casting a sympathy vote in the smuggest way possible.

And that, ultimately, is where the chapter falls apart. Kim has lost all her agency. She can’t do more than brief and uncontrolled sputters against Leigh, coming off as some dumb girl in over her head. She can’t stop Grimm from monologuing away at how he’s awesome and she’s not. She can’t even land a hit on him that he doesn’t allow. Grimm’s “edge” is him dominating her in all ways but one that wouldn’t fly on Disney for being explicit… and frankly after this chapter if someone told me Grimm then did that too, I would believe it. And I would believe him somehow thinking that would help her despite there being a literal Act of Gods (plural!) telling him otherwise.

This is, without a doubt, the worst chapter you ever wrote. And it’s not because it’s got bad grammar or a horrible concept… it’s just that the execution is so insulting to a fan of Kim Possible, especially the character, I suspect I would have dropped this fic if I was reading it in more detail before.

Yet… I think Leigh is wasted potential. She could have been a character that asks about how society treats its villains… but no, she’s eager to help Grimm out knowing full well his activities.

Kim’s ‘victory’ comes down to a narratively meaningless sentence, while Grimm’s victory is the entire fracking chapter that haunts her here on out! That is where, I believe, the Grimm hates come from. To quote your riddle, “No amount of success elsewhere can compensate for failure here”. And for Grimm Probable as a character, this is it. This is why everyone wants to see him thrashed so badly and utterly. Because he did this to Kim and got away with it paying nothing more than he intended to.

And somehow thinks he would still get an alliance out of it despite doing everything in his power to destroy the possibility.
Luke Danger chapter 11 . 8/6/2016
Got quite a bit to say about this chapter, good and bad. Start with the criticism and such first…

First, I think this ultimately is where Wade’s out of place anti-magic tract really comes to a head. I mean he trying to *crumble a bunch of civilians* because he was so insistent that it was tech, not magic! I mean bad as that is, that’s not the worst of it. I think ultimately the worst of it is that it makes Wade look like a total dense moron rather than just not experienced in the field. Rather than trying to develop a countermeasure in an area he lacks expertise in and it fails thusly, he…. Designs for the complete wrong thing and looks even more the fool even though he really should not have any problems with this or any sort of wig out about ‘defying science’.

I mean, Wade thinking that magic was ultimately just a shorthand for extremely advanced technology contained in devices seen as artifacts that can imbue some of the power into others (IE, MMP coming from the Jade Idols), and designing on that principle… well that at least would make some sense because in the show basically all powers come from some sort of tech, artifact, or extreme freak incident. But being ardent in the belief that there is no such thing as magic to the point where he was utterly unprepared for it?

It really just felt like filing down Team Possible more so Team Probable stands out, really, given that Jade seems perfectly able to accept it (and IIRC she even gets to berate Wade about that in the future) and makes Wade panic in a way that isn’t needed. I mean him trying to design something and it just not working because he was missing some variables would achieve a similar effect, tie into his canon issues in the field (hello Motion Deactivator friendly fire!), yet make it seem like he has the right idea (similar to Kim striking Maze). Plus it seems to ultimately have been used as a set up for Grimm to come in with a down-putting one-liner. I mean I certainly see the appeal of the idea of Wade having to learn to accept magic as just being magic, but it’s either one that needs to be done much earlier in the series where Wade hasn’t had the exposure, or needs to be more reasonable like ‘advanced enough tech to be indistinguishable from magic’.

Then tied to that is Will Du’s mention – I mean Global Justice of all people should not be giving Kim skepticism. This is the organization that put all their R&D into the “Ron Factor” and then a “Rufus Factor” with no tangible gains either way and on top of that basically slapping Kim in the face by telling her that she was not a key part of her own success. Plus, at this point Will Du calling Kim and amateur seems like resetting him to the first season. I mean by the end of it he came off with a degree of respect for Kim – and since then he would have seen continue to excel. Putting her down at this point really feels like just isolating Kim from her allies for little gain other than to make her more lonely and playing into the ‘GJ is entirely useless’ fanon. Admittedly I may have a slight bias here from my own work (including a fic starring Will Du), but still.

And that goes into Grimm – if that was his idea of a feeler to start an alliance, how badly did he min-max? I mean the title drop was nice, but ultimately it came off as a demand and did nothing to settle the actual issues that would stop any sort of team up. But on the upside, I did appreciate Jade pointing that out. Grimm had spent far too long trying to wind Kim up and doing things to destroy who she is with sadistic glee – she’s not going to forget that. Really, self-awareness is probably one of Grimm’s biggest weak spots, and perhaps what makes him Punchable. Kim at least has enough self-awareness to recognize when she’s wrong and ask herself questions. Grimm throws questions about what he’s doing out the window to focus on the score or just the thrill. Though I do have an image of the Great Bear Spirit enjoying Grimm’s sore knees just as a little ‘screw you’.

I think the big thing I need to praise is the scheme. It’s got a really sick genius to it – they turn civilians into stone, then send them into battle as shock troops. Besides being nigh on immune to pretty much everything due to the Yono process, it also is devastating on morale because well… pulling the trigger on Shego as she’s trying to rip your buddy apart limb from limb is (relatively) easy – here’s a psycho woman about to burn your friend down with green plasma. The little old lady turned to stone? Much harder.

But the other thing is the clear process they’re taking. Yes they are going for a ‘shortcut’ using tech, but then again it’s a reasonable shortcut and they’re still breaking new ground by doing so. Plus, I loved the callback to RoZ… and wonder what Maze became under the influence. I bet he has every reason not to want to discuss it given how he sees himself.

Really the best part might simply be that ultimately they are doing tests, probing the waters, making sure things are ready. It’s an amazing change of pace from the usual where the bad guys do all that off screen or don’t even bother, trusting it to work. But showing it happen not only builds up the threat better, but makes it clear that the bad guys are not simply sitting on their thrones waiting for the heroes to level up, they’re leveling up as well for the inevitable showdown.

Which leads to the fight at Graniton – besides what I complained about, I have to say Kim getting that kick in and then having it actually stun all the golems and Monkey Fist was great. Yes Kim’s plan failed (AGAIN!) because it wasn’t what she needed to do, but even Monkey Fist was forced to admire that she had done her research and came up with a good plan to take advantage of that. Plus ultimately that hit was Maze opening himself up by walking to battle without taking precautions. And of course, Kim breaking out the battle suit. Wish you had done a picture of that just for the change of pace of Kim losing her pants for once *wink*

And Kim getting there actually raised a good point – Kim must get a ton of calls that are essentially useless since she does everything from babysitting to recovering top secret tech. So is there some sort of filter, or did Kim just draw a line as Ron said way back in Crush about calling her from halfway across the world for minor stuff? After all in Queen Bebe she was not happy with getting a call about one store not having a doll for a little girl, and even ignoring the internet being the internet Kim would get a lot of garbage calls. She’s only one woman, and crazy travel time or not there are limits.

To answer the five points on the author’s notes – well, I’ll talk about what actually goes down in a review for the next chapter (and from what I remember I doubt it’ll be pretty, but I’ll try to find the things worth praising). Well in the five scenarios you proposed…
1 would be satisfying, but if it’s just rage against the (more-or-less) Mary Sue and doesn’t do anything lasting it doesn’t really help the story at all, nor would Kim take him as an ally after beating him.
2 has the problem of… once more, Probable beats Possible, and now he’s forcing her to work for him.
3? Impossible due to Grimm’s actions and Kim would not forgive them so easily without major cause.
4? Same issue as 2.
5? While it would be great for Kim to put Grimm behind bars, if it doesn’t actually hurt him… again with 1; what’s the point other than feels that don’t amount to anything?

As for what I’d do… well from this point of the story? The big thing would be Grimm by some means (I dunno, a fel ritual involving the sacrifice of virgin computers?) gaining enough self-awareness and contrition to try to make up for what he’s done and actually earn the trust for a team up. Which, alas, Grimm is incapable of given what he does instead.

But yeah, good and bad in this chapter.
Luke Danger chapter 10 . 7/31/2016
Much more plot pushing, and giving us more. So to go through...

First off I have to admit it felt a bit odd how the cops were laughing off the idea of Monkey Fist. This is the setting after all where the world rolls with doomsday schemes once a week, sometimes even more, on a regular basis. At this point I'd honestly expect a certain degree of 'Oh bugger, him again? Just when I had time for more tea' rather than laughing it out. I mean maybe a remark along the lines of 'you know even for all the strange stuff that's going on this is odd' (IE, Maze and Monkey Fist), but... yeah. Though at least Kim did get to shut them up with Nanny Maim's stunt.

Grimm going to the GBS gave me a bit of realization though - ultimately, he and Maze are not too different in how they see the Great Bear Spirit. In different ways they're the same mold of seeing something highly powerful as essentially a miracle vending machine, sort of like those faith healers that try to say 'but God will provide!' in spite of modern medicine; treats the guys upstairs as some sort of parlor trick. "here boy, miracle time!". Something something, joke about a boat, a helicopter, and eventually drowning. Maze thinks the GBS should be agreeing but has merely been 'corrupted' (and the GBS even pointed out why assuming that is not very appropriate for one who calls himself a holy man), Grimm thinks that simply being close to Rhonda is enough even though Grimm's concern of the GBS started and ended with how it was tied to Rhonda's powers and how it affects their usage. So of course he's not going to get an answer now that he's suddenly praying because he needs help.

I did like that Sakituya understood roughly what Maze had done yet couldn't just undo it - just because you know something doesn't mean you can flip it. Like a Fighter in D&D who has by experience gained an understanding of magic, but can't use it herself or has to rely on Fighter-usable wands and such. Just because they know how to undo a curse doesn't mean they'll be able to... but they can at least point you in the right direction.

The Ron and Rhonda segments were pretty good, plus it lets you make them more than just the plot item that Kim and Grimm are trying to recover, but lets them develop too. Especially given how long the story was going to go... yeah, that's important. I did like that you addressed eating and, ah, relieving. Cut off people asking about that, plus they are in a pseudo-Fugue state. Though the fact that Kim got a connection before Grimm... hmmm, implications there about how close the two mercs really are? :D Though Rhonda does seem to have the whole 'rely on Grimm' thing still, so I think I'm probably going to read these spirit world segments more closer than I did previously to see just how much more it set up Proxorza than I initially though.

Probably the best thing you're doing with Maze and Monkey Fist though is showing how the two are earning the power that they'll use against the heroes. Yes it is all ultimately going for them, but you've made a point of showing them taking time to figure it out, essentially giving two plots - the heroes, and the villains, and we see how it develops. I think that's great - So the Drama kept Drakken's scheme hidden from us yet we had the pieces on the way. Here you show us what the scheme is and instead focus on how they get their hands on each needed tool. Much better than just having them suddenly have everything they need.

I'll admit I did not expect the Imersion Pods from Everlot to show up, but really if you do one thing right you basically bring back as much of the show's plot tech as you can since that stuff did not simply vanish. Having it come back is a great way to better tie in things, plus just the stupid grin of a fan remembering the episode. :)

And for the usage of that, Graniton. It was nice you took a moment to humanize them. Sometimes it works best to just be vague as possible about what happened to let the horror take over (IE, Mar Sara being sterilized by the protoss). Other times you need to humanize so the victims aren't just for the plot advancement, plus as a fanfic writer you have the room.

Overall a good chapter that my main complaint about was the cops at the top being incredulous about the scheme as if mad science and crazed supervillains wasn't a norm.
Luke Danger chapter 9 . 7/19/2016
Alternatively: Kim Possible, in the hallway, with a halberd.

Not a whole lot to say on this chapter, so I'll focus on the big thing: Kim versus Monkey Fist. Ultimately I think it was in many ways a redux of Kim versus Rhonda - Kim could inflict hits that could move Monkey Fist around, but ultimately it came down to the simple fact that Kim's fighting an opponent with too much damage reduction (and unfortunately neither the Halberd nor Flail were 3 weapons, let alone 1).

While it certainly felt like "Kim gets her butt handed to her *again*" when the story is kinda-sorta read in one sitting, in detail it's actually much better than the fight with Rhonda in that, well... Kim is actually doing better than everyone else so far. Everyone else lost easily - here Kim not only held her ground pretty well but she also managed to hit him back, something Grimm couldn't lay claim to from his fight and Kim had gotten hits in before she went Medieval on Lord Montgomery Fiske. Plus, Monkey Fist also actually lost this time - his goal was to destroy Kim, he failed. Now likewise Kim failed to get info, but she did survive.

Actually, I'd argue that Kim really came out on top in this simply because she got to learn Monkey Fist's durability and the sheer resilience of Yono stone since she did not have memories of being turned to stone and pushed off of a ledge for a several story drop. Clearly Ron never shared that part, but I don't see why he'd need to.

And on that, Kim finally has done something better than Grimm definitively - he never even got a hit back against Monkey Fist that actually phased him. Here? Kim punted him into a fireplace. And really I think it comes down to Grimm's specialization biting him, though Monkey Fist training him probably did not help that.

I would point out that Kim has fought Monkey Fist and won a couple times, such as "Adventures in Rufus Sitting", but hey, Monkey Fist's a villain and he's been able to go from one of the few able to fight evenly with Kim to clearly holding superiority (if only because he has massive DR).

Though, Wade's disbelief with the Yono did raise to me the fact at how irritating it is because it gets in the way of them getting moving, not that it would have helped mind... I did realize something else though: Wade plays a /wizard/ in Everlot. Admittedly it's probably because that's the equivalent of being a techy there, but still... rather amusing given your idea of having Wade a flat earth guy about magic.

But yeah, it's a good fight scene and while it didn't move the plot along much, it did address Monkey Fist's manor, as well as giving some important infodump like Monkey Fist shifting his accounts and setting his affairs in order to go off the radar.

I did like Maze's bit about 'loose lips sink ships' - as I recall that was an American propaganda poster... so, reverse 'bundle everyone together', like how some people tend to apply a singular stereotype to Native Americans from the Algonquin to the Apache, now Maze is doing it to whites? :D

The bit with Bates was great though - a look at some of the consequences of being a megalomaniac who spent much of the family fortune on insane genetic manipulations and then went on going after monkey this and monkey that.

I do have one question with Grimm's scene though - was there a reason he walked? He should know the location in rough proximity to take the bike and get close.

But overall, a good chapter. Maybe it's 'filler', but it did settle a few things so they wouldn't be a problem later (Kim figuring out that Monkey Fist's stone is pure BS in resilience) and it is something that would have to be addressed - Monkey Fist's manor.
Luke Danger chapter 9 . 7/19/2016
Alternatively: Kim Possible, in the hallway, with a halberd.

Not a whole lot to say on this chapter, so I'll focus on the big thing: Kim versus Monkey Fist. Ultimately I think it was in many ways a redux of Kim versus Rhonda - Kim could inflict hits that could move Monkey Fist around, but ultimately it came down to the simple fact that Kim's fighting an opponent with too much damage reduction (and unfortunately neither the Halberd nor Flail were 3 weapons, let alone 1).

While it certainly felt like "Kim gets her butt handed to her *again*" when the story is kinda-sorta read in one sitting, in detail it's actually much better than the fight with Rhonda in that, well... Kim is actually doing better than everyone else so far. Everyone else lost easily - here Kim not only held her ground pretty well but she also managed to hit him back, something Grimm couldn't lay claim to from his fight and Kim had gotten hits in before she went Medieval on Lord Montgomery Fiske. Plus, Monkey Fist also actually lost this time - his goal was to destroy Kim, he failed. Now likewise Kim failed to get info, but she did survive.

Actually, I'd argue that Kim really came out on top in this simply because she got to learn Monkey Fist's durability and the sheer resilience of Yono stone since she did not have memories of being turned to stone and pushed off of a ledge for a several story drop. Clearly Ron never shared that part, but I don't see why he'd need to.

And on that, Kim finally has done something better than Grimm definitively - he never even got a hit back against Monkey Fist that actually phased him. Here? Kim punted him into a fireplace. And really I think it comes down to Grimm's specialization biting him, though Monkey Fist training him probably did not help that.

I would point out that Kim has fought Monkey Fist and won a couple times, such as "Adventures in Rufus Sitting", but hey, Monkey Fist's a villain and he's been able to go from one of the few able to fight evenly with Kim to clearly holding superiority (if only because he has massive DR).

Though, Wade's disbelief with the Yono did raise to me the fact at how irritating it is because it gets in the way of them getting moving, not that it would have helped mind... I did realize something else though: Wade plays a /wizard/ in Everlot. Admittedly it's probably because that's the equivalent of being a techy there, but still... rather amusing given your idea of having Wade a flat earth guy about magic.

But yeah, it's a good fight scene and while it didn't move the plot along much, it did address Monkey Fist's manor, as well as giving some important infodump like Monkey Fist shifting his accounts and setting his affairs in order to go off the radar.

I did like Maze's bit about 'loose lips sink ships' - as I recall that was an American propaganda poster... so, reverse 'bundle everyone together', like how some people tend to apply a singular stereotype to Native Americans from the Algonquin to the Apache, now Maze is doing it to whites? :D

The bit with Bates was great though - a look at some of the consequences of being a megalomaniac who spent much of the family fortune on insane genetic manipulations and then went on going after monkey this and monkey that.

I do have one question with Grimm's scene though - was there a reason he walked? He should know the location in rough proximity to take the bike and get close.

But overall, a good chapter. Maybe it's 'filler', but it did settle a few things so they wouldn't be a problem later (Kim figuring out that Monkey Fist's stone is pure BS in resilience) and it is something that would have to be addressed - Monkey Fist's manor.
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