Reviews for Phylactery
Jinxdroid chapter 36 . 8/27
I really love this story so far! The way you've portrayed Envy feels right on the mark, and I appreciate the fact that Lust has been getting her fair amount of time in the spotlight (forever disappointed that she died so early).

I wasn't really expecting to enjoy the Dante parts, but they're really great! I like the fact that you're taking the time to explore the idea of her existing in some form in Brotherhood. I honestly have no clue how they are going to connect to your main story, but I can't wait to find out!
Xeriar chapter 1 . 8/22
keep going! This is a great story
Skidzz chapter 36 . 7/9
wow this has got to be the most well-written houmuncli-themed fic here so far.

Like seriously, the details and everything, I'm amazed.

I can totally headcanon this after the series finale(makes me appericate the houmuncli even more)

I hope to see this updated again soon(but I understand why these chapters take so long) keep it up!

P.S. You said that Mustang will appear in the story too? 'Cause I would LOVE to see his reaction to see the houmuncli again, especially Envy and Lust.
AnimeMaster24 chapter 36 . 6/16
For what its worth, I'm still here. Looking forward to the next installment!
Roni-chan chapter 36 . 5/29
Hey there! I just found this story yesterday (it was recommended to me by a friend), and I basically read it in two sittings, because it was impossible to stop. First of all, let me tell you how much I admire your resilience with which you stick by this story! It seems incredible to me that you've started writing it almost three years ago, and you are still continuously updating it, even sometimes with longer breaks in between chapters. I only wish I had the same tenacity! And it also makes me happy that it's not even that much into the actual heavy plot yet, because it is a promise that there will be much more to read, which is worth all the waiting.

What I love the most about this story is how easy you make its flow look like. Though I generally grow bored of scenery descriptions, yours were scattered across the story enough for it to be enjoyable, and it tied in well with the other detailed descriptions that I usually love (there is nothing more exasperating than an under-detailed action scene where the reader can't even follow what's happening with their imagination; thank you for taking the time to fleshing them out!), and all the introspection, which are usually my favourite parts of even a more action-packed story. The Homunculi are generally harder to portray than the protagonists of FMA, and I feel like you have an extremely good grasp on them, especially Envy and Lust.

On the note of character portrayal, I have to mention that Selim/Pride does seem out of character a couple of times, but I'm guessing this is a natural byproduct of us readers mostly viewing him from the other Homunculi's viewpoint, who have not yet grown to understand the exact changes Selim has gone through living as an actual human. Still, it feels to me like he is making just a little too much of an effort to be just Selim, and I have a faint sense of foreboding that it may come to backfire on him. After all, let's not forget that he does actually have his own Stone still, doesn't he? Unless I misunderstood the whole concept, it was said (please correct me if I'm wrong) that all his siblings were brought back with the help of, and are now connected to, Pride's still existent Philosopher's Stone. So, even if all the others are technically human and powerless, what really is to say that Pride cannot eventually gain his shadows back, even if he doesn't actually want to right now? Is this a plot point you've considered exploring? Also, on the same note, do you really feel it's plausible for him to have gone through such a significant change in the course of six short years? I'm not challenging you here; human emotions are a strong enough device to change a person in the span of much shorter times, but there is still the force of four hundred years of Pride's memories and personalities to contend with that's supposed to be weighing down on Selim's mind, and I thought he was going to have more trouble with not reverting to Pride, especially in front of his mother. Frankly, I am as cruel as writers come when it comes to their characters, but I was looking forward to him freaking out Ms. Bradley a bit more, perhaps with more details accidentally revealed, rather than just his actual age.

As for Lily, on a side note, you've done an amazing job with her! From a very minor character, she became completely three-dimensional and believable, which is a feat considering it's usually easier to go down the OCish route, where she would have become just a little too omniscient, or uncharacteristically strong. I love that she has her fierce moments (I was grinning like a fool at the scene with Greed and his pack of cigarettes, not to mention making Sloth sit on Envy, good heavens!), but also that there is consideration given to her age, and that she's allowed to be faint-hearted. (I so loved the scene with Envy scaring the crap out of her! That was fantastically written.)

I also have to mention Greed here, because for a while, I had a few ambivalent thoughts on his portrayal. I must admit now that it probably just took a little getting used to; I feel that in the 2009 anime we didn't have enough time to actually grow fond of First Greed, and we never really got the opportunity to contemplate a Second Greed that existed apart from Ling, which gave the character here an odd, inexplicable sort of aimlessness (in spite of the fact that it was Envy who couldn't figure out what to do with himself). I am very much hoping that you do plan on eventually including Ling himself in the story, and the impact his presence would have on Greed (and by extension, the rest of them). But then, I have a soft spot for Ling anyway, and I would just love to see your take on the post-canon him, how he handles being Emperor (other than the short excerpt we got from him before Dante's diary), etc.

Admittedly, the Memories were at first a little hard to follow, because I haven't seen the 2003 anime, but I read up on Dante on the FMA wiki a bit, and now I'm guessing she might become the "unknown player" hinted at to come in later (at least, at this point, I can't see any other purpose to exploring her past this thoroughly when she wasn't a part of manga/FMA:B canon). I'm guessing it wouldn't be entirely unreasonable to assume she will be introduced to The Dwarf In The Flask in the next flashback chapter (that cliffhanger was rather obvious, I hope that was your intention), and might then partake in the same deception and ritual that then made Hohenheim a living Philosopher's Stone. There were thousands of people in Xerxes, if there could be two hosts for them, there could have been three as well. I just really hope you aren't going for the thing the 2003 anime did with Dante's body switching and rotting away, because 1. that is gross, and 2. it goes against manga canon anyway. I really like the kind of character you are depicting her as right now, though; her friendship with Hohenheim, though mildly infantile, is genuinely heartwarming (though things may change after the Dwarf In The Flask's influence is involved), and I especially love that she isn't initially depicted as a shallow or dumb person; that she was able to recognize her character flaw when it was pointed out to her, and she was not against changing herself for the better on the advice of an honest friend. I'm much looking forward to her further development!

Returning to the topic of Homunculi and plotting, I'm thinking that Lust may eventually figure out what I said above about Pride's stone, and may manage to use it to her advantage. I also hope, however, that by the time she is able to, she (and Envy) will have learnt enough to perhaps reconsider, or at least have some doubts as to whether this is really what they want.

This is getting really out of hand in terms of lenght, but there is one more important note I wanted to ask; the thing you've done to Sloth's character development seems to heavily resemble him being somewhere on the autism spectrum. Was that intentional, or did it just seem logical based on canon?

Overall, I have to say this is one of the finest works in the FMA fandom I've come across, if not THE finest. It was an utterly captivating and entertaining read; you got me hooked into the storyline, the emotions are very well played out, but not overly sappy or dramatic, with just the right amount of sencondhand embarrassment at certain parts. I couldn't recount right now all the parts at which I laughed myself breathless, but there were many of them, and I'm very, very much looking forward to what comes next. Thank you so much for putting your time and energy into writing this, because it is a gift to the fandom, and I wish for you to get all the appreciation you deserve for it. I have put it on my alert list, so I'll try my best to keep commenting as you update.

P.S.: Thank you for the helpful tips in critiquing on your profile! I do try my best to give lengthy and detailed reviews when I enjoy a story, but your pointers were a great direction for me to get my thoughts in order and make this review a bit less of a mess.

Ronnie (Roni-chan)
Purestrongpoem chapter 36 . 5/26
Great chapter. I enjoy it.
Ice Maiden Olivier chapter 36 . 5/19
Ahh an update :D :D :D :p can't think what he wants to show him though ;) hehe :p looking forward to more :D this is one of my favorite fics of all time :D
koliri chapter 36 . 5/19
Oh yes, an update!
It's nice to read more about Hohenheim and Dante in Xerxes. I like the way you write Dante: she's not reduce to a haughty mentality, her relation with Hohenheim brings her to think about the flaws in her attitude and I like the fact that she recognized that Hohenheim's ability to understand people (and bound with them) is a quality she lacks.
I don't know if it was intentional from your part, but this passage — when Dante tells Hohenheim to "not waste his time sowing seeds of kindness where there are only rocks" — makes me think of Mrs. Bradley and Envy. Though it's two different situations, I wonder which philosophy will prevail...

Now I have to admit... This is one crual cliffhanger. Still, it means the Little One in the Flask will appear in the next memories chapter!
Thank you for this chapter and good luck on the next one!
sniperpal chapter 36 . 5/18
Wait, wait, Dante? Why is Dante involved here? You're doing it right by using the manga/Brotherhood material, dude, don't screw it up and slip back into the blasphemy that was 2003!
Wrath 2003 chapter 36 . 5/18
Put me in your story.
Tenchiko chapter 36 . 5/18
Awwww I love these backstory thingies! And yeah, Von seemed kinda like a slightly more mellow version of Ed in the anime.
Oh and, I don't know whether you know this or not, but here's a fun fact about Von. As a teen, he had a hair trigger temper whenever anyone implied that he was stupid. (Kinda like how Ed gets ticked off with anyone who called him short).
Tyran272 chapter 36 . 5/18
Yay, an update!
purplemagechan chapter 3 . 5/16
No Envy baby no don't hurt yourself I think the elrics need to take all sharp objects out of his room after this. o_o

I am IMMENSELY impressed with your characterization of Lust here. Brotherhood Lust is really hard to pin down because she gets so little screen time and so many people don't make her quite evil enough but she's deliciously dark here. Not as outright sadistic as Envy but still having no sympathy for humans and considering them to be quite stupid, foolish and always assuming their actions are for their own benefit and that they can never truly be selfless.
purplemagechan chapter 2 . 5/16
Wow the character writing in this so far is fantastic. I already loved your characterization of Selim and Ed in the first chapter but your character writing of Envy and really all the homunculi but ESPECIALLY Envy is FLAWLESS. I love his reactions to everything and just how MAD he got. And I got feels at the bit with him and Ed not gonna lie. What I love about this fic is that while I've seen this premise before you present it in a realistic light, the homuculi not just immediately going for being brought back to life and just being fine with being human. I love how horrifically out of the loop poor Lust is because she died so early on she has NO basis what's happening. And Greed just goes along with it feeling victorious until he realizes he doesn't have his ultimate shield anymore.

It will be adorable to see how they adjust to having to live as humans do.
purplemagechan chapter 1 . 5/16
Very well written. I adore Pride and Selim so a fic starring them is always welcome. While it's not the most unique of concepts it's written VERY well and characterized perfectly. I love your Pride and I will have more to say for the next chapter.

Though I do wonder why Ed and Al went for this. Like my favorite scene so far has been Ed freaking out over Selim wanting to learn alchemy and then years later he's apparently letting him use alchemy to bring back the homunculi? I'm interested to know how Selim talked him into that.
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