|Reviews for Like Everybody Else|
| Quel chapter 12 . 10/26/2013
I began to read it years ago when there were only 5 chapters published and by chance I found it out today. I reread the beginning and read the end. I’m very glad it is all published now! You made a very good story, I loved your style, the way your Erik would describe things. All his insanity and obsession came out as clear as an insane mind can come out. His selfishness is there all along the fic somehow smoothed by his guilty and vulnerability, but undeniable and shocking in the end. Your Christine was also something else, all the while making me wonder what were her intentions, why wouldn’t she just snap, what was she thinking, etc. We had these hints here and there, as how she was taking initiatives, making her own decisions, even if not going directly against her husband, trying to be supportive! I’m very glad with her growing process. It was refreshing to notice that even if in a very disturbing way, they felt a twisted love for each other. Erik did not like the changes on her, but cherished what he had before and keeps her voice as a… memento? Christine is on her way to live her life but it is clear how she loves Erik and cares for him yet, she knows he should not be alone and tells daroga so (it was one of the best surprises for me, and showed her own unselfishness despite the hurt she went through). Of course I had to mention our dear daroga, because he is forever one of my most beloved characters (be it on Leroux or Kay or wherever) and I love when he shows a deep side in fics.
All and all, it somehow let a bitter taste on the mouth, nobody gets what they want and yet it is not as tragic as one would fear. I can see life going on for them. Now just my wishful thinking is that Christine would not be banished from Erik’s life and be present there on occasions, although I believe he has not enough interest on her now to keep a friendship or acquaintance…
OK, It was a very good reading (I’m surprised I’m not thaaat buggered by the ending considering I really suck for happy endings). All this about recording and not being able to capture the soul stroke the cord, well connected to the Pygmalion aspect of their relationship (isn’t it deliciously ironic that she took the control to shape herself into being so independent? I think she’d be alright with the potential she found in herself to achieve whatever she wanted. It’s Eriks’ loss, in all ways…). Well, thanks for posting it all. Hopefully I’ll see more of your works soon. Have a good life.
| gravity01 chapter 12 . 10/10/2013
Wow. Very rarely do I not like an Erik character. This fits the bill, though. Good gracious, how depressing. And kind of unresolved.
I think the worst part is that there didn't even seem to be any consequences to Erik's actions. He hurts people and it's then "oh well, not my problem". I think the whole thing could be summed up as "Erik always gets what he wants and then whatever." I wished so desperately that she'd managed to take or destroy the recording. Would've served him right. Christine deserves some level of payback after everything he's put her through. What a... loser. Ugh. He actually makes me think swear words.
| my-echo chapter 9 . 10/10/2013
I was so excited to see this story updated! Great chapter. Such diverse feelings this story gives me; I'm swept up in its waves and effortlessly carried along with the tide. I feel hope, dread, fascination, anger, sympathy - not necessarily in that order, and sometimes all at once! And (I've probably mentioned this before, to some degree) it is so deliciously frustrating yet endlessly intriguing beyond words to only ever see Christine through Erik's eyes, to never really be able to wholly discern her thoughts, feelings, and motivations beyond what we're able to outwardly glimpse and draw our own conclusions from. It's one of the things I love about this story.
Favorite line: "...because it was as if I had a furnace inside and every word she said, every gesture she made were like fuel only as usual I had no idea if I was supposed to fall at her feet or break her neck." Your Erik in this story has a stream of consciousness that is *constantly* vacillating between being terrifying and sensual, and it is a stunningly effective portrayal.
| megumisakura chapter 9 . 10/9/2013
great chapter,please write more soon.
| my-echo chapter 8 . 1/23/2012
Gawd, this chapter. The way you're able to convey such overwhelmingly powerful eroticism with such surprisingly simple and brief word imagery is utterly fantastic. (That was an awkward sentence, but hopefully it got my point across.) :D
I have to agree with another reviewer - it seems (disturbingly so) that Erik views Christine not as an entire person, but merely as two things: her voice, and her body. (The fact that he actually ruminated on the idea that in a nutshell, if he were to "distill" her voice, he wouldn't actually "need" her anymore was a little...off-putting, to say the least.) He doesn't seem to enjoy her as an actual companion, per se, someone he can actually have conversations with - rather, he seems to see her as a glorious music-box. Who happens to provide him with lots and lots of sex.
Chilling, and strangely appropriate. It makes sense that Erik would think of people in such distant, disjointed terms. I'm starting to become a bit worried for Christine, frankly. Erik seems to be dancing on a knife's-edge of sanity, particularly because he is still fighting the demon of possessiveness over her work on the stage, and I feel that at any given moment he could easily snap and do something horrible, something that he would of course regret later when it was far too late to undo it. When he mentally mutters to himself about the idea of killing her in order to "preserve" her, I have an increasingly difficult time knowing whether he's being silly or perfectly serious. It gives me the willies.
Also, the fact that he treasures her supposed innocence so much to the point of wondering whether she's somehow tainted after giving him oral sex (at least, that's how I interpreted his thoughts after that scene...a scene which despite its brevity was ridiculously hot, by the way), yet in previous chapters lamented the fact that she sometimes seems so naive and blissfully ignorant, speaks volumes to his own hypocrisy. He's apparently a totally unwitting proponent of the "madonna-whore" complex/double standard. I can't help but wonder if this is a product of his own frustrations with the fact that he can't always quite seem to recognize whether or not she's enjoying herself, or if this has been a part of his thinking all along.
And pardon my French, but sweet Jesus, that scene behind the flat. That was pretty delightful. I about died, reading that on my laptop in a room full of people and trying my level best not to blush and squirm. (Again - the fact that you were able to convey so much with so little is a mark of your ability as a writer, how you're able to focus on exactly the right details that matter [i.e.: "The thought of someone walking by on the other side of the flat, the danger of discovery, made the joy that much sharper"].)
On a totally different note - I know I mentioned this before on a different chapter, but I love Erik's "eye-of-the-storm" interactions with the daroga, the conversations they have, the dry little comebacks they always give each other and the calm way in which the Persian acts annoyed. (I particularly loved the Persian's line in this chapter: "I have a name, you know. I don't go about calling you 'murderer' all the time.")
Intoxicated, enraptured, and entranced by this tale, as always. Can't wait to see the rest unfold.
| AlteraPars87 chapter 8 . 1/22/2012
You have the most wonderful way of making someone blush when describing the joys of the flesh, no details and yet so much has been said... ( I loved the "sacraments" referrence) *blush*
Eriks never ceasing obsession with death is blossoming here and the way he thinks of Christines death every now and then ( ever more often ) only proves that hes actually mad as a hatter. I love it and I cant wait for more :D
| Phantom Night Owl chapter 8 . 1/22/2012
Poor Erik! Finally snagging Christine hasn't helped him very much. He's still mostly round the bend mentally. So now he thinks Christine is going to die? Maybe after he builds a phonograph he can start working on a blow-up dolly to replace her...they would be pretty much interchangeable.
| Angel of Mystery-145 chapter 7 . 1/20/2012
I like your unique take on this story and your way with words. Very well put. Poor Erik, doesn't realize Christine is in fact enjoying herself and, in her emotional childlike innocence, feels ashamed and too embarrassed to air such feelings with him, which I am convinced are close to or equal to his. ;-) Ah, well. I'm certain he will discover what all those little sounds and squirms really mean soon enough and am eager to see how you will relay that truth.
More please. :)
| Phantom Night Owl chapter 7 . 11/17/2011
This is a completely different take on Erik and Christine's relationship than what I'm used to reading, but I'm enjoying it. I get the impression with Erik though, that except for the sexual relationship, he's not quite sure what to do with her. When he's not bedding Christine, he actually seems irritated with her, and some of his thoughts and sarcastic comments are contemptible where she's concerned, as if he's writing her off as the desirable but dumb blonde.I don't see a loving relationship, just a possessive one on his part...he's more lecherous than anything else. Not too sure what's going on with Christine. Is she at all happy with Erik, sexually or otherwise?She's more of a blank screen ...does she have regrets now for returning? Or is she in turn using Erik to further her career? Still wish we could get inside her head...it would be very interesting.
| Phantom Night Owl chapter 2 . 11/16/2011
Erik's first time was very pleasurable for him, but he kind of forgot that it was also Christine's first time with a man. Poor girl was probably wishing she was somewhere else. Interesting that Erik sees himself as being dirty minded...his mother probably planted that thought in his mind when he was a child. I would like to see Christine's pov at some point in time...just to see what she thought of her first time with Erik. Obviously, it could have been better for her, but we're talking about a 50 year old male virgin who's been salivating over her for a long while. Hopefully, the next time will be better. Second thoughts, Christine?
| Phantom Night Owl chapter 1 . 11/16/2011
I'm glad I found this...it's getting harder and harder to find good Leroux fan fiction. Poor Erik! Lying on Christine's bed, clutching her wedding veil, waiting for death to take him away...it was pathetic and amusing at the same time. I like your writing style, and being inside of Erik's head and getting his pov is interesting to say the least. Christine is back and Erik is one happy Phantom. On to chapter 2.
| gravity01 chapter 7 . 11/12/2011
What a wonderful story! So happy I found it. I hope you update soon :)
| my-echo chapter 7 . 11/10/2011
I was so giddy to see the quick update! Erik's getting rather testy, isn't he? In a way, I can't really blame him - he wants so much for his desire to be returned, for her to ache as badly for him as he aches for her. Having her silently submit isn't enough for him, and I can understand why. I'm having a delightfully difficult time trying to glean Christine's side of this, with only Erik's limited perspective to use as a reference (such a brilliant device for this story, by the way - some people like to go back and forth between them, which works well in some stories, but I really love the uncertainty caused by confining POV to only one "side of the story." Sometimes it's nice to have a bit of a mystery to figure out - I love the complexity of trying to unravel what another character is *really* thinking without ever being given access to their true thoughts).
Despite my love for your Erik and his rambling thoughts, I honestly didn't enjoy Christine as a character at all, at first, when I first came across this story; I initially thought she seemed like a rather flat, dull character because she's just so strangely emotionless at times, but I think I'm beginning to see now that this isn't a lack of personality - it seems more like a veneer for her true emotions. (Not only that, but there's the fact that we're seeing her with Erik-Vision, which means, by default, that something about the way we see her is bound to be somewhat skewed one way or another.) You've added layer upon layer of intriguing ambiguity to her with every chapter, even though (and especially because) it's through Erik's eyes and not her own. The effect of this is the opposite of what one might usually expect - the more I find out about her and the more I "see," the less I know and the more questions I have. (Far from frustrating me, this actually makes me all the more irrevocably intrigued.)
Erik is so like a child in many respects - a child in the body of a man, with a man's intellect and desires and a child's impulses and reasoning. ("Touch me. Now." sent a little chill through me but also gave me a little hiccup of laughter, not going to lie. It was like a sullen tantrum of sex.) And again, afterward, we have flashes of incredibly unsettling metaphoric imagery - "To want her so badly that I wanted to cut her open so I could climb inside and stay forever." Shiver.
I also loved Erik's interactions with the daroga - probably my favorite parts of the chapter, if I had to pick favorites. ;) My analytical tendencies have always been more prone to dissect Erik and/or Christine than the Persian - he's just a very comfortable character in most respects who, in this story, sort of balances things out (i.e. the roiling desire Erik feels for Christine and the hurried violence of their sex scenes is balanced out by the much calmer, more rational scenes with the Persian - Erik [for the most part, at any rate, last chapter being a notable exception] has a way of coming to his senses when he's around him, rather than being in a constant turmoil as he is whenever he's around Christine). He's an important character, though, the Persian, despite being a sort of third wheel. I like your daroga's calming presence and the way he has of sort of smoothing things out a bit (or stirring them up, whichever you like - either way, he generally helps to illuminate things, rather than muddy them). :D
I am utterly entranced by this story, as always. Can't wait to see more!
Just a quick heads up: some of the italics in this chapter didn't quite transfer correctly - for example, it says "iNotreDame de Paris/i."
| violent darlings chapter 7 . 11/10/2011
Fantastic story, and such a joy to find well written Leroux. :)
| megumisakura chapter 6 . 11/9/2011