Reviews for Relationship Matters
otherhawk chapter 64 . 6/23/2013
This feels like chapter that's hanging on the very edge of the precipice, like the calm before the storm. Think it's the flashbacks and the slightly quieter misery.

Though with the opening of course, there's a great deal of misery. Hate the fact that Rusty barely remembers what happened the night before. Hate the fact that he got drunk there, in place of danger. Very unRusty thing to do, obviously, but this Rusty isn't really capable of stopping and thinking about what he's doing in moments like that. And most of all, obviously, I hate what he's said to Alex. Three words that he's never said to anyone before, and now he's made them meaningless in his head. Except they aren't, of course, and think that every time he says them from now on - and he is going to have to say them again, obviously - it's going to kill him a little more. And can see the drunken logic that led him there. Better to say them first, because that way there's no chance of Alex getting suspicious and wondering if he really means them. Did wonder if he might say them first for that reason, but hadn't considered the drunken part of it. Makes sense; the alcohol numbing him to some extent and making it all easier.

And do find it interesting that in thinking about having told Alex he loves him, he wonders what truths he might have let slip. Hate the fact that he could consider he might have told Alex any of that. And am sighing for the fact that he doesn't immediately consider that if he'd told Alex that James wasn't real, or that there is a larger plan, or even about Danny, that his good morning welcome wouldn't have been the same. Alex is part of all this, after all, and he loves James, and he isn't going to take the betrayal well.

Do love the flashback, even if it hurts, both Rusty and the reader. Saul and Mitch and a whole lot of love and happiness, and all that's gone now. Saul and Mitch are dead, and Rusty is alone. And sigh for the Thanksgiving when Rusty was sick, same as the in Body and Soul, and being loved and taken care of. Yeah. A lifetime away.

Am still intrigued by Scott and Carter backstory. Just btw.

Sigh for Rick being willing to sell the drugs. He doesn't have a problem dealing in other people's misery, and the money is always the most important thing. And am wondering about Danny's plan, and needing the jewels. Cannot figure it out yet. But then, there's loads I cannot figure out. Sigh. And I hate the fact that Danny's sitting there watching Brady and suffering and feeling powerless, and Rick doesn't even know or say anything.

And Danny flashback is pain. So much guilt and loneliness, and he's right. It is going to be like that from now on. Is never, ever going to go away. And that's awful. And suppose there is friendship, but Rick isn't worth that, and Danny doesn't even know it.

As always, I hate Rusty spending time with Constantine. Constant edge of danger there. And much sigh for the not-drinking because the drinking is so tempting and once he starts he isn't going to stop easily. And hate the coarseness for Constantine, and not too happy about the reasons for it. Because Mr Fitzwilliam wanting to promote Alex because of Rusty doesn't seem like a safe state of affairs. And do hate the comparison between Rusty and Tony.

And really do not like the way Constantine looks at Rusty. *worried*
Maia2 chapter 64 . 6/10/2013
This never seems to move forward , does it? I mean, stuff happens but it all seems to be the fates continuing to play with them. I guess I keep feeling their helplesness coming through the page. Sorry I feel I have nothing useful to say.
I guess holidays are quite depressing when you've lost people.
Maia2 chapter 63 . 5/5/2013
Well, first, glad to see an update to this.
Second, it never gets any easier, does it? You'd think all of Danny's worrying and going into action would help, and it kind of does, Rus does appreciate it, just... stupid Rick. (yes, I am totally patenting this as my signature words for this fic).
Glad Bobby and the guys will be helping, and can't help to feel frustrated too, because of Thanksgiving, but... at the same time, I can't help feeling so proud for Thanksgiving, you know?
So, lots of progress otherwise... Rus is getting tighter with the guys, finding stuff, being trusted more. Really cool. If still overly painful.
Thanks for sharing.
Maia.
otherhawk chapter 63 . 5/4/2013
As always, I mostly wish to tell you that this fic is brilliant and painful. Especially painful. With every chapter they get a little more distant, and Rusty falls a little further away from himself. Arrrgh.

Like the opening with Carter and Scott. Like that they have every intention of keeping on looking, in spite of their confidence in Danny and Rusty, but at the same time, I dread them actually finding them, because have to think that Carter seeing what Rusty is doing would be more than awful for Rusty. His reaction would be a little too close to Saul's, and that's something Rusty really doesn't want to think about too often.

And sigh for Rusty replaying the encounter with Danny in his head, and this time seeing all the things he missed the first time. The physical and emotional exhaustion and fragility. So much Danny's lost. And of course in Rusty's mind, there's nothing he can really do about that, especially not when he's assuming - understandably - that Danny didn't care to tell him about Teresa's funeral. But as readers, we know that if Rusty had stayed then right now, Danny would be doing so much better.

Much arrgh for Danny's dream as well. His subconscious - subconscience? - reminding him that this is absolutely not how things should be, that it doesn't matter what Rusty thinks he's worth, that this still isn't *right* And much love for the message he leaves. So pleased that he does try, that he does change his mind on this, even if, thanks to Rick, Rusty will never get the message and when he doesn't even bother mentioning it, Danny will be left thinking it meant nothing to him. When, really, if Rusty had heard it, I think he'd have left Larner's immediately. Sigh.

And Rick. Do not like him. You may know this by now. Even little things like not bothering to tip. And hate that he doesn't even wake Danny, because finding a glass of whisky is so much easier than offering comfort, or even listening, let alone the physical comfort that's what Danny actually needs right now. (Seriously. Wish someone to hug him.) And hate him calling Rusty a whore, and telling Danny about the rope marks and pretty much everything he says. Sigh.

Sigh too for Rusty and Alex, and for the champagne not touching him. Yeah. And Danny seeing that little scene, and just as Rusty knows Danny's watching him, Danny knows Rusty has seen him. And in response, Rusty puts on a show. Because he thinks Danny is thinking the same things he and Rick does, and he wants to prove to Danny that he can go through with this and doesn't care. But Danny sees Rusty taking the initiative and being not like Teresa, and rejecting Danny's help - rejecting any help - and, yeah. Sigh. My money's still on tragically. Also am wondering whether Danny assumes that Rusty got his message before this little scene.

And in the midst of all this, amusement for Bobby and Molly and Carter, and especially teenage Linus. And can picture the gravity-defying hairstyle and hope that, at some point, in normalverse, the twins get photos. And again, like that they're still looking and there are plans in motion, and incidentally, think that seeding of thanksgiving here is clever. Enough mentions that next chapter won't be a surprise. ;)

Much arrgh for Rusty working with Nelson and Lloyd and Brady. Is awful, awful thought. Especially with their acceptance and approval of him. Think that when Danny realises that, is going to be almost as bad as the sex. And further arrgh for the scene in Constantine's office, with Mr Fitzwilliams' approval, and Constantine's satisfied possession. Yes, James is really a godsend for Constantine. Someone who makes Alex happy, is still controllable, and who is tough enough and clever enough to just fit right in with the organisation. And right now he's one of Tony's boys, but I wonder if Constantine is looking further along the line, and imagining James taking on more duties, perhaps being on a level with Alex in the hierarchy, taking on more of the tasks that Alex finds distasteful.

And much intrigue for Mikey and Lee, and the part they're going to play. And also sigh for Tony's reaction. "I've gotta be pals with guys who sliced up Wes and Mason? Work with them and smile at 'em like they're my new best friends?" Yeah. Exactly what Rusty is doing, of course. No wonder he's screaming inside his head. And sigh for the trust Tony shows in James. There's lots that James has done to impress, after all, and that's not a comforting thought. Also dark amusement for the fact that Tony is talking about it. Yeah...the bad guy really is more open and in touch with his emotions than Rusty is.

The end scene. And the kiss in the text was inevitable to the reader, but still comes as a shock to Rusty. He's so far in and as far as he can see there's no way out. And hate him practicing. Hate the fact that he's never said the words like this before, and possibly not at all. And do like the acknowledgement that he loved Ed. Because he did. And maybe James can say it, and maybe Rusty can tell himself it's just words, but it isn't, and he knows it. And still, I'm hoping that when the time comes for him to actually say it to Alex - and I think it will - he does manage to say it. Because if he doesn't, everything could unravel and that would be dangerous.

And sigh for the whisky, and the first glass not touching the side of his throats, and even more for Constantine coming in, without knocking of course - he's all about the possessive - and his amusement at Rusty's drinking. And sigh for the longing for going out that Rusty feels, and for the approval that Constantine feels when he doesn't. Signs that James has fallen for Alex.

And can't wait for next chapter. Though am dreading Thanksgiving for both of them. Danny without Teresa, and Rusty with Alex and Constantine. Yeah. Things are only going to get more painful, aren't they?
TantalumCobolt chapter 62 . 4/8/2013
Wow... just, wow... I honestly don't know quite what to think. Your writing is amazing and I love it so much! Although, the events in this one aren't exactly anything to be happy about.
From the moment when Rusty goes back to Larners all I can think is 'Oh my God, get out of there Rusty!'. I feel so sorry for him, I almost wanted to cry! Each chapter just has me more convinced that something terrible is going to happen to him and I can't stand it :(
And RIck, he's so mean! I can't understand how he could hate Rusty so much. Okay, I kinda can., although he did nothing to him, but it's still cruel and unfair :( Especially changing the contact names, although I don't think he thought that one through very much. What would happen if Rusty called Danny? 'Eduardo' would come up on the screen and he'd probably answer it so then he'd know that Rick changed the names, right?
Teressa and Eduardo dying was really unexpected. My opinion of Eduardo is now extremely high because he risked himself to save Rusty. I just wish that Rusty hadn't made that joke about leaving Rick behind though, because then Eduardo wouldn't have risked himself and RIck would probably be the one who's dead.
You've probably guessed by now that I REALLY don't like Rick! I have a feeling that he's going to die, but that could just be my desire for him to be out of the story. I can understand that Danny feels as though he owes him something, but seriously? Defending him when he knows that Rick is everything that Reuben and Scott say he is? Hang on, did I even get their names right? I actually wrote Saul and then deleted it. I keep hoping he's still alive somewhere, 'cause I really liked him, but I don't think he is :(
Poor Danny, he's been through so much and Rick (I seem to keep coming back and blaming him for things) thinks he's helping, but he's really just making it worse! I honestly believe that if Danny and Rusty are just alone together for even a day everything will someone get better. Rick seems determined not to let it happen though, and I'm of the opinion that it's only making Danny miserable.
Hopefully everything will get much better soon though! I'm just going to keep wishing and wishing that Rusty will sort things out with Danny, Danny will tell Rick to not-so-nicely go away, and the job will be dropped - Rusty's part in it anyway, because the bad guys still need to die - and then everyone will live happily ever after! Except Rick, because I really don't think he deserves a happy ending. Unfortunately, I can't see that happening soon, if at all :( So, as much as I want to keep reading and for everything to be all right, I guess I'll just have to wait and see what kind of torture you can cook up next!

-TaCo

P.S. Sorry that this is so long. I actually had to force myself to stop adding things on and send it! That may explain why it's so disjointed. Sorry!
Sappho's Cat chapter 39 . 12/2/2012
It didn't count if no one saw.

A motto to live by. Sort-of thanks, silver-eyed lady.
Sappho's Cat chapter 36 . 12/2/2012
I accept your apology.
And I think I liked the pent up worry better. Now I feel empty, like someone died. Oh right...
:(
Sappho's Cat chapter 33 . 12/2/2012
Change of plans. I'm going to teach Teresa how to kickbox. Then I'm going to hold Rick down and she can go at it (this plan is so flawed, but the mental image makes me happy.) Or perhaps I could dump Rick with Reuben. Reuben has a much better imagination than I do.

And still, I wait on tenterhooks for the explosion.
Sappho's Cat chapter 30 . 12/2/2012
Oh, I like Teresa. How couldn't I? She's so sweet.
This story has had me in a constant state of worry. I'm so high strung that every time Rick opens his mouth, I have an almost overwhelming desire to let off some steam by punching him.
Man, all those little aberrations from the plan back at Larner's are really adding up to some potential hurt.
Sappho's Cat chapter 29 . 12/2/2012
That wasn't foreboding in the slightest. I am looking forward with unbridled optimism to the next few chapters.

Oh boy...
Sappho's Cat chapter 28 . 12/2/2012
Yeah wow, this wasn't what I expected at all. Danny and Rusty's lives are so different. Teresa-well, I was going to say that her relationship w/ Danny was pretty Father/daughter, but I guess not.
Sappho's Cat chapter 27 . 12/2/2012
Teresa. Not what I was expecting-my best hunch was that she was physically disabled, possibly wheel-chair-bound, possibly somehow Danny's fault.
Very sad.
Sappho's Cat chapter 23 . 12/2/2012
Ooooh Rick. I will find you and make you eat your own head. Somehow.

I've just gone back and forth between hating him and almost liking him for the last 23 chapters. He's entertaining and intelligent, and he's been pretty nice to Eduardo, but then he's also so brutish and cruel. Well, I officially don't like him at al anymore.
Sappho's Cat chapter 10 . 12/2/2012
A flashback each :(
And I'm hoping that somehow, Saul is still alive too, 'cause he's so cool.
This is an unhappy universe.
Well, chocolate and teasing and teamwork one chapter, and sadness the next. So the next chapter has a 50% chance of being a happy one. Onward!
Your writing contains such authentic emotion. You make me want to punch Mitch, and Willoughby, and Rick (sometimes), and the mysterious god/being who messed with the universe, and every other villainous character.
Sappho's Cat chapter 8 . 12/1/2012
Heh. I was wondering which one was going to know Reuben. Both is appropriate.
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