Reviews for Encaenia
Sevatarion chapter 1 . 10/3/2015
Great story, great writing. Your Shep and Sam were written superbly. I know this is likely a one off but you should consider continuing with these characters.
RheasHelm chapter 1 . 9/3/2015
I thought Traynor was very well done in this story - at times excited, at times dismayed, jealous, insecure, mischievous, determined, clever, sexy...
And cute, e.g. when Shepard made her grand entrance, and "Sam's galaxy shrank to a single point"; that was beautifully phrased.
I also liked how Traynor characterized Shepard as the master of mixed signals, and how Sam was forever playing "she loves me, she loves me not" in her head at the beginning.

There was one thing that was a bit confusing and that was your tendency to use "she" and "her" in the same sentence for both Shepard and Traynor. Obviously it wasn't impossible to figure out who said what, but it introduced a distracting element.

Oh, and what do you mean by "Being ignored by your plus one isn't great, either"? Is that something British?
electric gurrl chapter 1 . 5/19/2015
I couldn't take my eyes away for the whole story. This was so good.
aknelson chapter 1 . 9/19/2014
Well, I've read this one a few times now, so I really should leave a review! Actually though I only have encouragement. You are fucking brilliant when it comes to writing emotions. Not just this story, all of them. It's rare among writers, even the best of them. One of those aspects of writing that's difficult to analyze, you just know when it's right. I really, really hope you're writing your own original stories and characters! It would be a small crime against humanity of not.

The thing with this particular story that stands out to me is how true Shep and Sam's interactions ring. It feels very authentic, like intense without going over the top.

Anyway, keep writing! :) Go on and just get James and Ash back together, you're killing me over here. :p
OriginalAlcy chapter 1 . 10/12/2013
As promised, I’m getting around to reviewing this piece that I actually read when it was first posted. I wasn’t in much of a state to offer feedback after the first time around so I’m keeping a more clinical approach this time!
First and foremost this really made me want to go to Oxford – almost a year living in the UK and I haven’t made it up there yet :-(

It’s a setting that is almost completely antithetical to your traditional Mass Effect environments so you would think that it would be incongruous to find our heroes there, but it really works. Definitely adds a real sense of romanticism.

I loved Shepard’s show-stopping entrance and Sam’s subsequent meltdown. Their very rapid courtship is entirely believable as here are two people who have obviously been attracted to each other for a while, they’re older, they’ve lived through a war, and they’re not going to mess around and waste time. The desire and need for one another has been pent up for so long that it emerges in such a glorious display of hot, sexy romance. Loved Sam’s introduction of the double-ended dildo – completely hot and a perfect way to demonstrate Sam taking control of Shepard. To relinquish control like that, when done well, is just the hottest thing of all time.

What a great one-shot, but I really can’t decide whether I like either Encaenia or Still Game more than the other. I think there’s probably just a different one for different moods! Again, you write smut with the best of them.
Crosswood chapter 1 . 8/28/2013
Aha! Shepard and Traynor: excellent. What a strongly characterised duo you've written, to be sure. I am mostly struck by your Shepard, to be honest – everyone (player and author) constructs a different sense of who their Shepard is. This particular creation is tough but flawed; a meathead soldier with a heart of gold. There is a very strong sense of self about her. Traynor also: she seems to waltz out of the game and into the story, very much in character. This is backed up with deft descriptors – not overdone or heavy, but instead a brief touch and then gone again.

Technically the story is very good, but I'm sure you know that already.

Probably the weakest section, if I might venture quietly, was the dinner. Alas, I use “weakest” in the relative sense – the story as a whole is tough and together. Sam's jealousy was also probably well justified, and certainly it made sense from a story point of view, but for some reason the back-and-forth of the mood (through the dinner and it's accompanying dance) struck me sharply the first time I read it. The rest of the story explores themes of regret and anticipation – perhaps the slightly abrupt introduction of jealousy needed to be threaded in sooner? But I risk – and already am – being churlish.

The story also had your trademark sly humour throughout. I must admit to a rueful smile at Sam's pavlovian queasiness. The flirting carried on throughout between Shepard and Sam was that perfect mixture of awkward and comfortable, sometimes dropping into one or the other at comedically appropriate times. All of this was a pleasure to watch.

Thank you for this story - it was a pretty awesome thing.
the.subverter chapter 1 . 8/23/2013
Holy mother of.

I don't even. I can't even? This story. So congratulations. I'm a bit of a tight ass about laughing when I read stories (in a good way!) but with this one you managed to make me laugh out loud several times. Your Sam is bloody brilliant.

God, I am so bad at reviews and am trying to properly express how much I adore this one. First (second, third?) I was in anticipation throughout this entire story. I felt as nervous as Sam did! And when Shepard shows and she's so... Shepard and amazing.

And how did you make something -so fucking hot- be so sweet? Ugh. Shep and Sam are my OTP and stories like this really ... just slay me. Thank you, thank you, thank you for telling me about this. Jinkies. I really love it. You are an incredible, incredible writer. You should know this. I hope you know this. And never doubt your power of erotica. You've quite the talent.
jay8008 chapter 1 . 8/19/2013
(Sorry about the delay! This was published while I was on vacation, and I read it in a moving car on a roaming iPad...such a terrible device to write reviews on.)

Fantastic little story - I love how you maintained a consistent tension of fragile confidence warring with self-doubt - from both of them in different ways. The I'm Not Worthy Of You vs. the I Don't Know How To Love dynamic (my crude summary) is really interesting and a nice storytelling vehicle. Excellent as always, and looking forward to your next work. :D
Grace Kay chapter 1 . 8/10/2013
Holy fuck that was hot. And terribly sweet. And I want about five more of them. I loved the premise, and you really built up the anticipation, made us feel the year (and more, given their time on the Normandy) that Sam had been waiting. And I do love me a Sam who takes charge. Holy Jesus, you are one talented author.
speedbumpcity chapter 1 . 8/9/2013
That was beautiful, just absolutely fucking beautiful. Like the descriptions, the vibes everything man. It's really next level sultry, like whole new compass of lingering desire, not even lingering, the aftertaste this has left me is just one big fishbowl of mellow. But mellow as in like ahhh peace. Tranquility. Birds. Seriously kedd this is something special, maybe i love it more because i'm on massive to quote HugoCogs 'Shepnor' thing. I dunno. Regardless i still love it. The best thing about this love is that I really for the life of me cannot pinpoint where it reaches the epitome as well.

I've got a proper thing for beautiful phrases and this ones certainly a goldmine for a few. Like the bit where they swap hats. I was just like is this really happening oh fuck, that right there is a sight to bestow. I have no idea why it festered so much emotion within myself but it just makes me wanna walk down cobbled streets or in fields of flowers and other wonderful bullshit with my friends swigging a few bevvys and going This is fucking it. Ahhh Summer. All the while singing Peace and not even getting hazy just existing. If you havent heard of peace you should check them out man. Shameless plug. But i'm exceeding content right now. Note i didnt use happy because happy's too much of a slag to truely justify this relm of euphoric bliss. I realise i sound like a mumbling junkie and strangely enough i'm ok with that. Although you probably think i'm a drug crazed killer.

I got this again where you say lavender twilight and i pictured fields brimming with lavender and making sneaky tracks through them. To me the buts that were delicate were just that raw. So like fragile and with need practically dripping rather innocently from their backs.

Just some of the words sent sheer shivers down my spine, and i sound like an even bigger pleb then when i started out, didnt think that was possible.

Then along comes 'eyes had acquired a feral gleam' and i was like STHAPPP please. Before i melt due to perfect desciptions about the most inate human acts.

To be honest I was mentally incapable before i they even reached that tree trunk and the colours it's like you've got a dulux colour chart perched on your knee, attention to detail's everything right?

And just on the whole how natural it all feels like i read a lot of stuff on here thats all like 'i am fine' and is so robotic and shit like that i just think it really messes it but this it's no nonsense cut the apostrophe dodging crap. It juat flows really nicely, nothing feels forced and during the sex scene you arent suddenly like 'woah hold up, what happenes there?' Its just exceedingly good normal life.

Some bits are sheer genius that brought a sly smile to my face like 'being fucked by a soldier, her soldier, in the meadow' you can imagine traynor having a total brain meltdown and then hey whattdya know she does. Ha ha. I'm sorry it had to be done. Then the bit where you go 'strong and toned and awesome' hahhaha it was like you just went fuck it, i'm setting the thesaurus down for this one. Brillaint man.

So, erm yeh think i might have to stop there before i make your head swell any bigger than i no doubt presume it all ready has. i think i'll check out your other story to ease the come-down of my literary induced high.

SBC :)
Lyta Halifax chapter 1 . 8/8/2013
Hey, that old guy looks familiar. :-)

So...wow. Definitely a big wow. You know me, I have become increasingly into Shepnor (oh, I wonder if I just coined that) and oh god damn, this was a hot one. You took a lot of that talent for heat from Sinchi and focused it laser tight.

And I love the feels in it as well. The aching longing Sam is going through, the roller coaster of emotions as she's trying to figure out if Shepard is into her or not, Shepards own issues letting her guard down and the initial mixed signals she's sending.

And also, as you know, I love that this story is terribly, terribly British.

So definitely took my breath away with this one!