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Old 2012-03-01, 00:04   Link #121
Sol Falling
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1. Length of the whole fic, huh...given that naturally we don't have as much information on the overall story structure as you, I do think it'd be fine to basically leave it to your discretion. My original assumption was simply that all the "major" chains would turn out to be about the same length overall, but indeed there's no need to stay stuck on even that requirement. I do suppose that what we've read up to here so far feels like it's been enough for about half or, on some chains, perhaps two thirds of a story.

2. I do think about 2 chapters of romance per girl would sound about right.

3. Three sections for future Mami Lives chapters seems like a logical split at this point to me. Regarding what you've said about the non-romance thread of the Mami Lives section possibly having a time skip, would that include the Homura romance chain? While I wouldn't mind just a brief description of Madoka's activities in the chain where she becomes more or less alone and isolated, even if the romance in Homura's route wouldn't start until after WalpurgisNacht, I do think I would be interested in a couple chapters of Homura and Madoka just growing closer together, . Or would that indeed be the chain? But yes, in any case I do think a further split after the events of the previous chapter would be appropriate.

4. The narrative complexity seems alright so far to me, at least thinking of it in terms of the game view. I do admit I might feel a little bit lost occasionally at the beginning of chapters as I try to remember which chain they are continuing from. I think that's pretty much just an unavoidable consequence of trying to take in all the storylines at the same time. The index is a pretty good start, I think, in helping us keep it all straight; for maximum convenience though, I suppose I might find it useful if each new segment perhaps include a link directly to the chapter/segment which preceded it (that does sound like a fair bit of re-organizational work, though, so its not necessarily a firm request, nor one probably needed for the simpler/more straightforward early chapters).
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Old 2012-03-01, 00:40   Link #122
Kogetsu Shirogane
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Well, if it makes you feel any better, you're having like, the exact opposite problem I usually do. I can generally think of dialogue easily, but have problems writing the scenes to actually use it with... which is probably why most of what I've written is so dialogue-heavy.

Anyway, onto the stuff you wanted responses to...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
1) How much longer, in general, would you like the story to be? With the Mami Lives and Homura/Sayaka Alliance chains, there's no hard and fast rules here at all. With the Canon Narrative, I want to stick to the anime fairly closely, but even here I could skip over quite a few scenes where Madoka is not on camera if that's what people would prefer.
Well, I'd actually imagine some people might be feeling a bit cheated if the Mami Lives side ends up shorter, but it doesn't really bother me if the conclusions are nice.

Unless you're taking it all the way to WN, Alliance looks like it could end pretty soon, but I'm not sure what you're doing with it.

As for Canon, while it certainly makes sense, skipping over scenes without Madoka kinda removes a good portion of the middle part of the series, doesn't it? This is a pretty tough call.

All in all, I really don't know what to do here. Sorry about that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
2) What do you hope to see with each romance route? Basically, how elaborate would you like each romance to be? Time constraints will be a factor to some degree of course (Madoka/Mami can go very long, Madoka/Kyouko will have to be at least a bit brief), but I'm wondering how much time you'd like me to spend completely away from action/drama/suspense to simply focus on "yummy Romance" shall we say. 2 Chapters per girl per route sound about right, or would you prefer more or less?
An average of 2 chapters should be fine, I'd imagine... though I'd suggest giving Mami an extra one if we're going by route, given the fact exactly one chain involves MadoMami(excluding the harem end), whereas Sayaka and Homura have multiple ways... not really sure about what to do with Kyoko, though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
3) I've been thinking of splitting all future Mami Lives Chapters into three sections instead of the current two. 1 for Mami Romance, 1 for Sayaka romance, and 1 for "No Romance Yet". The alternative to that would be to stick to the current format (Mami Romance/Mami Friendship) and have lots of split spoiler space sections for parts focusing on MadoSaya and parts focusing on Madoka-no romance. Do my readers have any preference here?
That largely depends on how much space NRY takes up. I'd imagine there wouldn't be a whole lot of people wanting to read about Madoka moping about while her friends are off fighting... on the other hand, I can't shake the amusing thought of Kyubey trying to coerce Madoka into making stupid wishes during that time frame.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
4) How do readers feel about the overall narrative complexity at this point? Too complex, too straightforward, or just right? I'm kind of worried its become too complex (or just too long) since I seem to have lost a few readers since this fanfic began.
Hard to say... I'm intentionally making things more complicated than they really should be, and I'm not having problems... then again, I'm also insane.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
Now, to address Coldlight and Kogetsu directly - Excellent feedback guys! Both of you have great replies that are very helpful.

As per your replies, I've made the following changes:

1. The first post on this thread now includes an Index. Please check it out and tell me if you find this satisfactory or not.

2. Madoka shooting at Kyouko in one section has been changed to be a grazing blow, and also a shot where Madoka was careful to only use a bit of her power.

3. Jinnai now refers to himself as a "magus". I know that was a concern that both of you had (Kogetsu brought it up to me elsewhere).
Um... I'm only connected to the last one. In fact, most of this last part seems to be directed entirely towards Coldlight, so I'm just gonna skip to the next time my name comes up.

Thanks for the compliment all the same. Glad to know I've been of some use here.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
You should know, Coldlight, that Kogetsu liked Sayaka having a brief villainous laugh. Since you're split on that, I'll probably stick with the laugh. I won't have anything else like it though unless Sayaka snaps somehow (such as going into Berserker mode).
If I had to be completely honest with you, Coldlight's probably the expert here. I just really thought the line, laugh included, was a nice touch, given the overall mood of the scene.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
Finally, Coldlight, I'm curious to know where you get the bit about Kyubey ruling out wishing people back to life. I honestly don't recall seeing that at all in the anime. Given your wizardry with Madoka Magica screenshots that's second to none, it might be nice if you can show us a specific screenshot pertaining to Kyubey making an Aladdin's Genie-like claim of "No wishing people back from the dead!".
I'm also a little curious, as I don't quite remember that either. Besides, I don't think allowing the wish is all that much a problem, considering exactly how powerful Madoka really is. (You know, the only one here who actually has made a wish to bring someone back to life? )

As a side note... I'm going to be hearing Robin Williams talking for Kyubey from now on. Thanks.
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Old 2012-03-03, 13:18   Link #123
Triple_R
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Mami Lives Chapter 5
Mami Romance Chain



Mami, with Kyubey perched upon her shoulders, had just made that suggestion to me after meeting up with Sayaka and I at our lockers prior to the start of classes on Monday morning. Given the timing of the suggestion, it took me by surprise. Sayaka and I cried a lot at Hitomi's funeral yesterday, and I was still feeling a little bit sad over Hitomi's passing. So the idea of taking a trip to the beach so soon after the loss of a dear friend struck me as a bit strange, maybe even inappropriate.

“A trip to the beach...” I replied under my breath, trying to absorb Mami's suggestion.

“Right.” Mami said, before restating her suggestion, “I think that this Friday would be an excellent opportunity for you and I to go on a weekend trip to the beach. After all, we picked up new swimwear only a few days ago, and I also have a convenient place for us to stay at there!”

“What beach would we be going to? And what convenient place are you referring to?” I asked, as I was curious about the idea in spite of my current misgivings with it.

“The Goza Shirahama beach.” Mami answered enthusiastically, “It's about a two hour bus ride from Mitakihara City, so it would have to be an overnight trip. Kazuki Kudo owns a nice beach house there, and he told me on Saturday that I could make use of it this coming weekend if I wanted to.”

“The Goza Shirahama beach is a great beach from what I've heard.” Sayaka stated, while she held her chin in her hand and started making a proud playful face, “It's a clear beach with white sands covering the shallow seashore for long distances. It's the perfect beach for a romantic getaway!”

Sayaka teasingly winked at me after saying that. I blushed a bit over that, as I could see what was going on here. Still, my worries over Mami's suggestion remained.

“Are you sure it's appropriate for Mami and I to go to the beach so soon after... ?” I began to ask Sayaka before Mami interjected.

“That's part of the reason why I think that now's a good time, Madoka.” Mami said in a deeply sympathetic tone, “It's important to honour the passing of friends and loved ones, but it's also good to find enjoyable activities to do that can take your mind off of such losses, better enabling you to embrace life again. I know someone who struggled to do that, and that may have contributed to how cynical and jaded she became after enduring a very tragic loss.”

There was a certain wisdom in Mami's words that resonated with me.

“Mami's right, Madoka.” Sayaka said, before leaning in closer to whisper to me, “Besides, this is part of the reason why I became a magical girl, so that you and Mami could enjoy a more happy and normal relationship. You and Mami can have a nice trip to the beach this weekend while I take care of magical girl duties here.”

“Well, it does sound like a great idea.” I said, “But aside from family vacations and sleepovers at friend's places, I've never been away from my home. If I'm going to go on a long trip with you, Mami, then I would want to get mama's approval first, and...”

“It probably would be a good idea for me to meet your parents soon, anyway.” Mami interjected, with a thoughtful look in her eyes, and a slight smile on her face, “So why don't I accompany you home today, and pay you and your parents a visit? While I do so, we can hopefully earn their approval of us taking a weekend trip to the beach.”

If not for how I had recently revealed to mama that I'm a lesbian, this idea would have scared me a bit and left me feeling very anxious. But thanks to telling mama about that, I felt a bit more comfortable with the idea of introducing Mami to my parents. I'm still a little bit nervous about it, of course, but Mami is very polite and well-spoken so I'm confident that it should all work out well as long as I keep my wits about me.

“Ok.” I said, after taking a brief moment to consider Mami and Sayaka's words, “That's fine with me. It's a great idea, Mami!”

“I'm glad you agree.” Mami said, while flashing a bright smile in my direction, “Anyway, I better get going to my own classes now, especially since I don't want to make you and Sayaka late for yours. I'll meet you here after school, Ok?”

“Ok!” I replied energetically.

After that, Sayaka and I waved goodbye to Mami and Kyubey while we made our way to class.

There was still a sombre and reserved mood in the class given Hitomi's recent passing, but as the day went on, I think that things were starting to get back to normal. It was thankfully an uneventful and unremarkable school-day, as I think my entire class wanted stability to return after the shocking events of last week.


During lunch break, Sayaka and I made our way to our usual spot on the school's rooftop. While there, Sayaka told me about the exciting time she had tracking down a couple powerful witches over the weekend.

The first witch was a TV and amusement park-themed witch that her and Mami had defeated together. Sayaka talked about how fun it was to watch Mami blow TV screens into sparkling smithereens. Sayaka expressed some pride over how she was the one to deliver the final blow in that first witch fight.

The second witch was one that looked like she was inside of gigantic birdcage. Mami had watched on while Sayaka had fought that witch alone, as Mami wanted to make sure that Sayaka was ready for solo witch hunts in case Mami wasn't around to help her.

While it was interesting to hear about these witch fights from Sayaka, what I was most curious about was how Kamijo was doing, given how Sayaka had made a wish largely for his benefit. So I decided to question Sayaka about it.

If you chose B for Choice M3, read Section Thankful Violinist. Otherwise, skip over it.


Spoiler for Thankful Violinist:



Sayaka then explained to me how deeply moved she was by hearing and watching Kamijo perform a violin recital on the rooftop of the hospital during Saturday. She said that no matter what else would come from her wish, that one moment was worth it all.

As I thought about the good that had arisen from Sayaka's wish here, I couldn't help but wonder if I had made the right choice in not making a wish to bring Hitomi back to life.

My mind would be plagued with guilt over that during much of the rest of the school day, but I would force such thoughts out of my mind so I would be in a better state of mind for introducing Mami to my parents.


Mami met up with me at my locker right after classes ended for the day. She told Sayaka that she intended to meet up with her later this evening after she was done visiting my place. Sayaka nodded in agreement with that, and waved goodbye to Mami and I while wishing us luck. I appreciated the gesture, although it did cause me to have that feeling of having butterflies in my stomach.

Mami and I then began to slowly walk towards my home, side by side. After we were on the forested trail just beyond our school, she took hold of my hand and made a radiant smile towards me.

“Don't worry.” she said to me, “From what Sayaka told me over the weekend, your mother is a very mature and understanding person. I'm sure it'll all go well.”

“I hope so.” I replied, before chuckling nervously, “I might stammer a bit and act a bit shy though. Please don't hold it against me if I do that.”

Mami giggled a bit over that, while bringing her free hand up over her mouth.

“W-What's so funny?” I asked her, feeling a bit hurt by her laughter.

“It's nothing to be upset about.” Mami said towards me with a playful grin, “In fact, your... very girlish nature is something that I really like about you, Madoka.”

“Thanks.” I replied with a slight smile and a blush, as I could tell that Mami was sincerely complimenting me here.

It wouldn't be much longer until Mami and I arrived at my home.


“Wow, Madoka, what a beautiful home with such serene scenery all about it!” Mami exclaimed, upon seeing my home for the first time, “Your home looks modern yet also attractively quaint. And all the lush forestry around it makes it so warm, picturesque, and inviting.”

“Thanks.” I replied, “My parents, especially my mama, really likes having a home that lets them get away from it all. Our home is a great place to recharge your batteries, as mama likes to put it.”

“Yes, I can see how that would be the case.” Mami responded in a sweet tone of voice, although I was troubled by the slight sense of regret that I saw wash over her face.

Was Mami envious of the house and family I had to come home to? I hope not, but I could understand it if she was. But I had to put that aside for now, in order to properly introduce Mami to my parents.


“Mama, papa, I'm home!” I shouted out, as Mami and I walked in through the front door, and laid my schoolbag down on the floor, “And I have a new friend with me that I want to introduce you too!”

“A new friend?” Mami asked teasingly, raising an eyebrow, while she smirked a little towards me.

Before I could respond to Mami, though, I heard mama call back out to me.

“Welcome home!” Mama cried out to me, “You and your new friend can come join us in the kitchen.”

A minute later, Mami and I walked into the kitchen. There sitting at the table was my mama, wearing her usual work attire. I guess that she had arrived home early from work. Sitting in the highchair was my younger brother Tatsuya. He was playing with some little toy cars, while trying to imitate the sound of a race car motor. I think that Mami was greatly amused by that.

“And you are?” Mama asked, addressing Mami.

“My name is Tomoe Mami.” she replied, while bowing slightly, “It's good to finally meet you, Mrs. Kaname. To set the record straight, I'm your daughter's girlfriend.”

Mami had a funny grin on her face while she said that. This combined with the words themselves, and mom's response of “... I see” to it, caused me to chuckle a bit nervously.


If you chose A for M Opportunity Choice 2, then now read Section Mami Tomoe's Bold Confirmation. Otherwise, read section Junko Kaname Talks to Mami.


Spoiler for Mami Tomoe's Bold Confirmation:



Spoiler for Junko Kaname Talks to Mami:



“So, Mami Tomoe is it?” Mama asked, just to make sure she had her name right.

“That's right.” Mami answered, “I'm a 9th Grade student at Mitakihara Middle School.”

“... Twistchy!” exclaimed Tatsuya, taking note of Mami's hair, “Gooood for CARS!”

Tatsuya then reached one hand out towards Mami's hair and starting playing with it with his stubby fingers. Mami laughed over the gesture, before smiling pleasantly at my younger brother. Tatsuya then tried to use Mami's hair as a curvy raceway for his toy cars. That unfortunately ended up with one of Mami's curls getting a bit messed up while Tatsuya's cars crashed to the floor below, as Mami's curls couldn't support their weight of course.

“No!” cried Tatsuya, as though in shock and horror, “Cars fall down, go BOOM!”

“Sorry about that.” Mama said to Mami, while I laughed uneasily over Tatsuya's behaviour.

“No, it's Ok.” Mami replied warmly to my mama, “I'll get his cars for him.”

Mami then leaned over and reached down to pick up Tatsuya's toy cars, and hand them back to him.

“Here you go!” Mami said enthusiastically to Tatsuya, as she handed him his three toy cars, “Enjoy your VROOM VROOM cars!”

VROOM VROOM!” Tatsyua exclaimed in reply.

“This red car has a special name.” Mami said to Tatsuya, while pointing one finger at the car in question.

“Whatsitsname?!” Tatsuya shouted in eager question.

“It's a Rosso Fantasma car.” Mami answered with a playful grin.

ROSSSSO PANTAZZZMAAA!” shouted Tatsuya, holding the red car high above his head like it was a great reward.

Mami giggled over Tatsuya's words and actions here.

“You're pretty good with kids.” Mama said with a smile towards Mami, before turning her attention back to me, “Not bad, Madoka. You made a good catch here!”

Mom!” I piped up in extreme embarrassment over her words.

“Don't worry about it, Madoka, it's fine.” Mami replied, before turning her attention back to my mama, “In fact, I'm very glad you seem to be so accepting of it, Mrs. Kaname.”

“Madoka is 14 now, so there's some choices that I think she's ready to make for herself.” Mama replied, “Still, since you are here, there are some questions I'd like to ask you directly.”

“I'll be glad to answer any questions you may have.” Mami replied.

“Let's start with the beginning then.” Mama responded, “How did you meet Madoka?”

“There's a great story behind that.” Mami answered with a smile, “A friend of mine was chased by a bully into a closed-off section of the nearby mall. My friend called out for help.”

Mami then turned her face towards me, while she made a beaming smile towards me.

“Madoka and our mutual friend Sayaka responded to my friend's call for help, and raced him to safety, where I met up with him.” Mami continued, “That's the first time I met Madoka, as well as the first time I met Sayaka. I was impressed by their heroism, and the three of us struck up a quick friendship.”

Mami's words made me blush with embarrassed pride. It was nice to think back on how I first met Mami, although it was a bit funny and unfortunate to hear Homura characterized as a bully!

“Madoka, you never told me about that.” Mama asked me, with a touch of concern in her voice.

“I didn't want to worry you.” I replied, “Especially since everything seemed to work out fine. We didn't get hurt! Sayaka, Mami, and I are all fine.”

“That's right.” Mami chimed in to support me here, “Shortly after Madoka and I became good friends, she... confessed romantic feelings to me, and I was very moved by that, and so I gladly accepted her confession.”

I blushed deeply over remembering that, and I think that even Mami blushed a bit over being this open about it all. As for mama, I think that she was mainly surprised that I had made the “first move”. It took her a moment to get over that surprise, before she continued to talk with Mami.

“Well, you certainly seem like a nice and mature young woman.” Mama said to Mami, “But because of that, I'm going to ask you this straight out: Do you love Madoka?”

“Yes, I do.” Mami said, with no hesitation and a touch of passion in her voice, “Your daughter is a very important person to me, Mrs. Kaname.”

I was relieved to see mama making a relaxed smile over all of this. I could tell that Mami had won her over!

“I'm glad to hear you say that.” Mama said to Mami after a slight pause, “Let me go get my husband. He's working in the garden right now, but he probably should meet you as well.”


Mama then went and brought papa back with her to meet Mami. I was very happy to see Mami make a great first impression on both of my parents! Mami, my family, and I chatted a lot over the next couple of hours, including dinner.

During the Dinner conversation, Mami brought up her beach trip idea to my parents. My parents thankfully approved of Mami's idea! I was extremely pleased by everything going so well.

After Dinner, Mami told my parents, brother, and I that she had to get going now. Mama told Mami that she's welcomed to drop by my home whenever she'd like to. Papa agreed with that. I think that Mami was touched by how quickly my family had embraced her.

I then bid Mami goodbye at the door.

“I'm so glad it went really well.” I whispered to Mami, as I leaned in close to her.

“I was confident that it would.” Mami replied to me, as she placed one hand on my shoulder, “You have a wonderful family, Madoka...”

“Thank you.” I replied, although I once more could sense a touch of regret coming from Mami.

“Anyway, I can't wait for our beach trip!” Mami exclaimed with a smile.

“Me too!” I cheerfully replied with a smile.

“I'll see you after school tomorrow.” Mami said to me, “Goodbye for now.”

Mami then leaned in to give me a quick goodbye kiss. She then left, with us waving goodbye to each other.


Today had been a great day! After the tragedy of Hitomi's passing, it felt so refreshing for genuine happiness to once more take hold of my life. I couldn't wait for the coming weekend's beach trip! I was so looking forward to spending time with my precious Mami-san...

Through all of this, it was easy to forget all about the world of magical girls and witches, even as Mami and Sayaka were now big parts of that world. I wondered how long this blissful avoidance of that world could continue for me...

__________________________________________________ ___________


Mami Lives, Sayaka Romance Chain

Around noon time Sunday, Sayaka would arrive at my place. Now that Sayaka was my girlfriend, I have to admit that every planned meeting with her brought with it an added bit of anticipation and excitement. It was silly, I know, but my heart and mind couldn't help feeling this way.

So when I heard a knock on the door around noon time, Sunday, I excitedly leaped out of the couch I was sitting on, and raced to the door. I then eagerly pulled the door back.

“Good morning, Madoka!” Sayaka shouted with a smile and a slight blush.

“Hi!” I exclaimed, as I gave her a quick and firm hug before inviting her inside.

I think that mama caught a glimpse of me instinctively hugging Sayaka, and it made her raise an eyebrow.

“Is anything wrong?” Mama asked of Sayaka and me.

“Oh, no, everything's fine Mrs. Kaname.” Sayaka said with a dismissive wave of her hand and a brief chuckle after I released her from my hug.

“So what do you and Madoka have planned for today?” Mama asked Sayaka.

“Um, well, I was going to visit Kyousuke at the hospital, and I was hoping that Madoka could accompany me for that.” Sayaka answered.

That explanation was fine with my mom, so after I grabbed a quick bite to eat, Sayaka and I headed off for the day.

“Do you really intend to visit Kamijo today?” I asked Sayaka, as the two of us walked side by side after leaving my home.

“Actually, I do.” Sayaka answered, “...I mean, if you don't mind.”

“No, I don't mind.” I replied, “I'm fine with you still caring about Kamijo, and he probably needs all the support he can get.”

“Right.” Sayaka stated, “Don't worry. My heart is settled. You come first in my life now, Madoka...”

Sayaka's words warmed my heart, and were welcomed reassurance to me, especially since she took hold of my hand while she said those words. But I had to admit that it felt a bit awkward to accompany my new girlfriend as she paid a hospital visit to a guy she once had a crush on.

Still, Kamijo truly did need the support. It would be cruel and callous of me to want Sayaka to stop visiting him in the hospital. And from a practical standpoint, it was probably best if I did accompany Sayaka on such hospital visits just to make sure her romantic feelings for him wouldn't crop back up after visiting him.

After arriving at the hospital, Sayaka went up to Kamijo's room on one of the higher floors while I waited on a bench on the first floor of the hospital. I was surprised to see Kyubey appear before me!

'Good day, Madoka' he said telepathically to me

'Good day' I replied telepathically, 'But shouldn't you be with Mami right now?'

'Mami is an experienced magical girl, and can look after herself.' Kyubey responded, 'The person that concerns me the most is you, Madoka.'

I was a bit surprised by Kyubey's words here. After Sayaka and I had made it clear yesterday that we had no intentions of becoming magical girls, I didn't expect to see more of Kyubey except when I met up with Mami.

'Why are you concerned about me?' I asked him telepathically.

'I've noticed that your relationship status with Sayaka Miki has changed.' he replied, 'My understanding of humans is certainly not perfect, but I do know of the problems that can arrive from humans having split motivations.'

So Kyubey knows about how Sayaka and I are now girlfriends! I hope that he hasn't told Mami, as I'd hate for her to find out about it that way.

'What do you mean by split motivations?' I asked Kyubey telepathically.

'I can tell that Sayaka still cares deeply for Kyousuke Kamijo.' Kyubey began in answer, 'Based on my experience with other humans, such feelings could prove a hindrance to her growing relationship with you. I find that many humans like to have one other particular person that they devote their cares and emotions to, and I think that Sayaka Miki is one such human. So her being split between you and Kyousuke Kamijo could cause some unfortunate problems.'

Kyubey's words reflected some lingering worries that I still had, uncomfortably bringing them back up to the surface.

'Then what do you suggest?' I asked him telepathically.

'I'm not making suggestions, merely observations.' Kyubey answered, 'One such observation is that if Kyousuke Kamijo's hand was to be healed, Sayaka would have much less reason to continue to be concerned about him. It would likely make it easier for her to focus all of her cares and emotions on you, and isn't that what you would want, Madoka?'

'So are you saying that I should wish for Kamijo's hand to be healed?' I replied after a brief pause.

'As I made clear, I'm only making observations.' Kyubey responded while closing and reopening his eyes, 'But I will say that such a wish would be acceptable if you were to change your mind, and decide to contract with me as a magical girl.'

'I... I'll think about it.' I replied to Kyubey, 'Thank you for showing concern over Sayaka and I, Kyubey! But please don't tell Mami about our 'relationship status change' yet, as you put it. I'd rather do that myself.'

'Of course.' Kyubey responded, 'In my experience, most humans highly value discreetness and privacy in such matters, so I'll respect your wishes here. Please feel free to take your time in informing Mami of your relationship status change with Sayaka. I doubt Mami will mind. I'll be leaving now, Madoka, but if you do change your mind on becoming a magical girl, you can find me with Mami.'

'That's good to know.' I replied.

And with that, Kyubey and I wished each other goodbye for the day. Kyubey's words did resonate with me. I hadn't considered wishing for Kamijo's hand to be healed in the hopes of it unburdening Sayaka's heart, but there was a certain logic to the idea.


After paying Kamijo a visit, Sayaka left the hospital with me. She seemed a bit distracted and sad over his condition, but she tried to downplay the situation after I asked her about him.

But the person who would be the most distracted and lost in thought, throughout the rest of day, was me. Kyubey's words had given me a lot to think about, and it caused certain worries to become front and centre in my mind, making it hard for me to relax. Unfortunately, Sayaka started to notice that, while we spent most of the day hanging out at her place, playing video games, watching some TV, and listening to music. Sayaka's parents weren't home, and so that should have relaxed me if anything, so I think how distracted I seemed was particularly noticeable to Sayaka.

“Madoka, are you Ok?” Sayaka asked me, while she had her arms wrapped around me as she sat snugly beside me, “No offence, but your mind seems to be miles away!”

We were watching TV at the time, and Sayaka was right. My mind wasn't focused on the here and now. It was focused on what Kyubey had said to me.

“...I'm worried about you, Sayaka.” I answered her, “That's been distracting me much of the day.”

“Why are you worried about me?” Sayaka asked, in a tone of great puzzlement, before smiling widely at me, “Madoka, I've never been happier!”

“Really?” I asked, “You really feel happy now? You don't find your heart to be torn in two any more?”

Sayaka sighed a bit over that.

“I'm sorry.” she said to me, “It was a bad idea for me to bring you on my visit to Kamijo earlier today. Part of my hope with that is that I wanted to demonstrate to you that my heart isn't torn any more, but I can see it just caused uncomfortable doubts to rise back up for you. I really should have known better.”

“It's not your fault!” I exclaimed to Sayaka, as I didn't want her to feel bad about herself, “It's my fault. I should have put more trust in you.”

“It's not your fault, since trust has to be earned.” Sayaka replied, “So let me earn it now.”

Sayaka then reached one hand behind my head, while she gazed lovingly into my eyes.

“I love you, Madoka.” she said to me, “You're the only person for me.”

Sayaka then gently pulled my head towards hers, while she moved her lips towards mine. We then kissed. Sayaka held my head gently in place with one hand, while she used her other hand to softly caress my back. It felt very pleasant, especially as she continued to kiss me. It was a very wet kiss, and I felt my heart race a bit during it.

In this moment, nothing else seemed to matter. All that mattered was how tightly bonded Sayaka and I now were. I felt such happy contentment in this moment, as my faith in her was renewed, as was my feelings for her.

After our kiss ended, Sayaka and I looked into each others eyes with feelings of intense love and desire.

“Have I earned your trust now, Madoka?” Sayka asked me, while she caressed my face with one hand.

“You earned it a long time ago.” I answered her, as tears welled up in my eyes, “But I'm sorry for ever doubting you!”

With a warm smile on her face, Sayaka brought me in closer to her with a tender embrace. I nestled my head on her shoulder.

“There's nothing to be sorry about.” Sayaka said, “I'll be more careful in the future. But please know that Kyousuke is simply my friend now, while you're the person that my heart belongs to.”

A couple minutes later, after Sayaka had released me from her embrace, her eyes seemed to light up with sudden inspiration.

“Madoka, I have a great idea!” Sayaka exclaimed, while standing up with her hands on her hips, “Why don't you, Mami, and I all go clothes shopping tomorrow after school?”

“Eh?” I replied, as the idea seemed somewhat random to me, “Do you need new clothes, Sayaka?”

“It's just for fun, silly!” Sayaka replied with a wide smile, “I think it might be good if we all did something fun and relaxing together. Plus we haven't seen Mami at all today, and I don't want to leave her feeling lonely.”

“That's a good point.” I said, before I started to smile with encouragement over Sayaka's idea, “Ok, sure! Let's all go shopping tomorrow after school!”


Sayaka then walked me home, and shouted “I'm looking forward to tomorrow!” after wishing me goodbye for the day.

“Me too!” I shouted back to her.

“What are you and Sayaka doing tomorrow?” Mama asked.

“Oh, we're just going to go shopping for clothes together.” I answered mama.

“Oh, I see.” Mama replied, “That's a good idea, Madoka! Your wardrobe could use some spiffing up. That's another one of the secrets to being a beauty.”

“Right.” I replied with a shy grin.

Not much later, I went to bed. I went to sleep with a smile on my face, as Sayaka's words and actions had put my concerns and worries to rest. It seemed as though Kyubey might have been wrong about Sayaka, and this cheered me up a lot.


The next day at school seemed to fly by, and without much incident. Hitomi was typically very busy on Mondays, so she thankfully didn't mind not getting to go clothes shopping with Sayaka and I. Sayaka and I then met Mami at the entrance to the mall.

“Thanks for inviting me along!” Mami exclaimed to Sayaka and I, “I had great fun watching Burning Sisters with both of you last week, and after a busy weekend it's probably time for another relaxing getaway.”

“Yeah, I also thought it would be good for you, Mami.” Sayaka replied, “Now, let's all of us go get some great new clothes!”

With wide smiles on our faces, Mami, Sayaka, and I cheerfully walked and skipped through the mall. It seemed to me to be a simple yet fun shopping spree. But what I would soon find out is that Sayaka had special ideas in her mind for this particular trip to the mall.

In one of the newer clothing stores, I found myself admiring one notably flashy outfit. It was a very short, pink, button-up dress with yellow sleeves and black petticoats sticking out underneath. I thought it was very pretty. Unfortunately, it was also very expensive. I could afford it, but just barely.

“You seem to really like that outfit, Madoka.” Sayaka said to me, after noticing me closely looking over the dress, “I also think it would look great on you!”

“I agree.” Mami stated after looking at the dress itself, “Why don't you try it on, Madoka?”

“Ok.” I answered, a bit uneasily, knowing that it was probably too expensive for me to buy, but not wanting to disappoint Sayaka and Mami.

After changing into the dress, I walked out of the change room with it on. I had to admit I felt a little bashful in such a flashy dress, but at the same time, it did suit my tastes.

Wow, Madoka, you look simply radiant in that dress!” Sayaka shouted enthusiastically, while leaning towards me with her hands arched at her sides.

“It suits you perfectly, Madoka.” Mami said in turn, making a smile, “It brings out your natural prettiness.”

“I-I'm really glad that you both like it.” I said, as I shyly smiled and blushed over Sayaka and Mami's compliments, “But unfortunately, it is really expensive, and...”

“Don't worry about that.” Sayaka said with a proud smile, “I'll buy it for you!”

My eyes went wide in shock over this.

“B-But Sayaka, it's really expensive, and...!” I began in protestation.

“Let Sayaka do this for you.” Mami whispered to me after moving in close to me.

“After all, isn't it only normal for people to want to buy nice gifts for their girlfriends?” Mami continued in whisper to me, while winking at me.

“... S-So you know about Sayaka and I?” I asked in nervous whisper, “Did Kyubey tell you?”

“No, Sayaka herself told me about it over the phone late last night.” Mami replied in whisper, “She felt guilty over keeping it a secret from me, but I can understand why you and her chose to do so. Don't worry, Madoka, I'm not hurt by it or anything like that. In fact, I'm glad to see my two new friends happy like this.”

Even as Mami said these words, there seemed to be a slight look of regret on her face. Still, she did seem to be taking it pretty well, so I was very glad and relieved over that.

“So, Madoka, is it Ok if I buy that outfit for you?” Sayaka earnestly asked me.

“I-If you really want to, I guess...” I answered.

“I do!” Sayaka exclaimed in shout.

So not long after that, I changed back into my student uniform, and handed Sayaka the outfit that I really liked. Sayaka then handed it to the cashier, and used her Japanese Express credit card to pay for it.

“You're paying for it with a credit card?” I asked Sayaka.

Sayaka laughed a bit nervously over that.

“Well, I don't have enough cash on me to afford it.” she answered, “But I'm sure if I save up over the next few weeks, I'll be able to handle the credit card bill.”

That made me feel a bit guilty over how generous Sayaka was being here. I hated the thought of her going without just so I could have a nice outfit. But the purchase was now made, so I would have to make it up to Sayaka some other way!

Mami, Sayaka, and I would soon be done shopping. Sayaka and I then waved goodbye to Mami while Sayaka invited me over to her place just for a short bit before I would go home.


After Sayaka and I arrived at her house, Sayaka said she wanted to try something. For that, she wanted me to change into my new outfit. So I agreed to it.

After changing into my new outfit, I sat in a chair now situated in front of the mirror in Sayaka's bedroom. Sayaka carefully removed my hair ribbons, and started combing my hair.

“I wanted to see how you'd look with your hair down while in that new outfit, Madoka.” Sayaka said, “I hope you don't mind.”

“No, not at all.” I replied, “It's the least I can do after you bought me this expensive dress...”

“Oh, stop fretting over that!” Sayaka exclaimed in slight irritation, “I bought that for you since... since you're my dearest friend, and I want you to know that.”

Sayaka's parents were home, so she was playing a bit coy here in case they overheard us talking. But the meaning behind her words was clear to me. She had probably planned this all out carefully. She wanted to prove to me beyond a shadow of a doubt that I really was the only person for her now.

This made me feel such deep gratitude towards Sayaka, and my love for her grew even larger because of it. I really did have to make this all up to her somehow...

“Sayaka!” her mother shouted out to her from the base of the stairs leading up to Sayaka's bedroom.

“What is it mom?!” Sayaka shouted in question to her mom, while she continued to comb my hair.

“I just heard word from the Kamijo family that Kyousuke was released today!” Sayaka's mom shouted in answer, “I thought you'd want to know right away.”

And then Sayaka became very startled and excited. She instantly stopped combing my hair.

“Madoka, I'll be right back!” she quickly shouted to me, as she raced out of her bedroom, and down the stairs.

With curiosity getting the better of me, I couldn't help but to slowly follow behind Sayaka, as I wanted to listen in on her and her mom's conversation.

“How is Kyousuke doing?!” Sayaka excitedly asked her mom with great concern in her voice, “Is he doing Ok?”

“Well, he's on crutches and his hand is still injured of course.” Sayaka's mom replied, “But his father felt that since you visit him so often that you should be informed of his release from the hospital before he goes back to school.”

“I... I see.” Sayaka replied, as she started to calm down, “Is he planning on returning to school soon?”

“Yes, he intends to return tomorrow morning.” Sayaka's mom said, “From what I could gather from what Mr. Kamijo said to me, Kyousuke is really looking forward to seeing you and all your friends at school tomorrow! Isn't that great, Sayaka?”

“Yes... yes it is.” Sayaka replied, as I could sense deeply conflicted feelings wash over her, as I looked at her face from the top of the stairs leading to her bedroom.

And so... doubt, wretched doubt, began to creep back into my heart and mind. I hated myself for it. How could I doubt Sayaka like this when she had been so incredibly kind, generous, and loving to me?! Am I this shallow a person?!

But as I turned around and slowly walked back into Sayaka's bedroom, another idea quickly took hold of me. An idea that rushed back into my mind as there, perched on a chair in Sayaka's bedroom, I saw Kyubey, smiling at me...

__________________________________________________ _______


Mami Lives, Madoka Stands Alone Chain

Sunday came and went without any incident, but that ironically contributed to a day that was displeasing to me, as it felt very long and lonely. I called Hitomi during Sunday to see if she'd like to hang out with me, but she was busy with piano practice and various other activities.

Sayaka and Mami were no doubt busy out fighting witches or familiars, and I didn't want to get in their way.


If you chose B for MH Opportunity Choice 1, read Section Madoka Considers Contacting Homura. Otherwise skip over it.


Spoiler for Madoka Considers Contacting Homura:



Some doubt began to creep into my mind over my decision to not become a magical girl. I was starting to become worried that my decision to not become a magical girl would isolate me from some of my closest friends, and leave me with nobody my own age to spend time with. But I tried to put such worries out of my mind, as I went to sleep Sunday night, looking forward to school tomorrow.


I eagerly shouted out to Sayaka and Hitomi when I met them at our usual spot on the way to school. They both shouted 'Hi!' to me in turn, and we both made our way to school for a day of classes that seemed to go by pretty fast.


If you chose A to S Opportunity Choice 1, read section Curt Sayaka. Otherwise, skip over it.


Spoiler for Curt Sayaka:



I was hoping to hang out with Sayaka after school, but Sayaka told me that Mami wanted to take the afternoon and evening to introduce Sayaka to a different magical girl. Sayaka made a short apology to me over that, but that made it clear to me that this meeting was for magical girls only.

As for Hitomi, she's typically very busy on Mondays, so she didn't have any time to spend with me either.

So I simply headed back to my home after school, feeling increasingly cut off from my friends. As I laid upon my bed, feeling a bit restless and bored, I suddenly saw Kyubey appear once more amongst my plushies!

“Kyubey!” I said to him, “What do you want?”

“I'm concerned about you, Madoka.” he answered, “You don't seem to be very happy lately.”

“Well, that's because all of my friends are busy with their own activities.” I replied with a tone of regret in my voice.

“I'm seen this problem before.” Kyubey stated, “In my experience, it's hard for magical girls to maintain close friendships with normal humans. Their two worlds are simply too different, and inevitably they become distant from one another.”

I could tell where Kyubey was heading with this. Part of me resented that, but at the same time, I could understand where Kyubey was coming from.

Was I making a mistake in choosing to not be a magical girl? Was I cutting myself off from Mami and Sayaka by making that choice?

These questions were at the forefront of my mind while I continued to talk to Kyubey about it. The earlier decision I had made here was maybe not as firm as I had thought it was.

I might soon need to rethink that decision, and reaffirm it, or make a different decision in its place...

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------




Phew, finally blasted through that Writer's Block, I think.

Now, a few key things:

Mami Lives, Mami Friendship Chain has now been split into a chain for Mami Lives, Sayaka Romance, and a chain for Mami Lives, Madoka Stands Alone.

I think it's fairly clear which chain each reader should go on, depending on the choices he or she has made thus far. But if there's any confusion over this, please tell me that, and I'll try to make it more clear.

A link to the image that inspired my description of Madoka's new outfit is found in the Sayaka Romance section above.

Also, my intention is to have the first line of each update contain a link to the previous chapter in its route, thus hopefully making it easier for readers to follow the story.


Thanks to both Kogetsu and Sol Falling for their excellent feedback!

But that's it for now. I look forward to know what people think of this update, since it took me longer than most, lol.
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Old 2012-03-03, 17:35   Link #124
Kirito
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Once again another amazing update. I read it, loved it, and enjoyed the full half-hour I put reading and going over stuff so that I don't miss anything. I'm glad you're out of your writers block for the moment, but you've put off a winner in my book.

Before I give you my final grade on your performance I'm going to go deep into what you've done.

Current Mami x Madoka Romance Scenario:

The romance pace between the two is still better than before, and I truly like the way it's progressing. I'm truly amazed how realistic you've made Madoka sounded and acted during the "introducing my life partner" to my parent's scenario. The interactions were funny, cute (Tatsuya playing with Mami's hair like a race-car track), and pretty heart racing because I thought that Mami and Junko would start off sour at first, but they're getting along like mother and sister in laws already.

I enjoyed the clever obvious twist on how they first met and how convincing she sounded. The part where Mami called Homura a "bully" kind of made me laugh.

Spoiler for Mami's Feelings:


It's nice to see Sayaka coming to grips with her Magical Girl status thanks to Mami's teachings, and Kamijou's reaction to it was exactly as I expected it to be. Can't wait what you have planned for the beach trip with my favourite pairing.

Current Sayaka x Madoka Romance Scenario

The Sayaka x Madoka romance pace is still excellent, great work. I like how Sayaka is gradually getting bolder and Madoka slowing becoming more assertive. This chapter definitely adds the drama factor in their current relationship with Madoka becoming doubtful of Sayaka being in love with her because of the insecurities knowing that her girlfriend loved the boy she was taking care of for a long time.

Spoiler for Madoka's Feelings:


Spoiler for Sayaka's Feelings:


Spoiler for Kyubey:


Excellent work on the Sayaka x Madoka romance chapter and I enjoyed the way you described how closer they've gotten and how all of that is possibly being threatened. Adding Kyubey to the mix adds to the suspense and your sense of timing on that was almost too perfect (have you read too much thriller novels?). It's a calm before the storm and it's getting intense, you've outdid yourself again, can't wait, excellent job.

Mami Lives, Madoka Stands Alone Scenario

Madoka is the odd one out due to her not being a Magical Girl, while the others have that said responsibility. It gives us a look on how Madoka feels about Homura, Sayaka, and Mami, and wanting to be with them, especially Homura, whom by now has triggered a romance flag with her at this point.

Now much to say but looking forward to some Madoka x Homura development.

Okay grading time:

Spoiler for Pros:


Spoiler for Cons:


Keep up the phenomenal work as always and I look forward to your next update! Take your time...as always you rock!!
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Old 2012-03-04, 00:37   Link #125
Kogetsu Shirogane
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Ah, back to this side of things... it feels like it's been half a month since we saw a "hasn't died yet" Mami.

Spoiler for Delicious M&M:
Yes, I was serious about using these nicknames... though there's a slight addition to the last one, to account for the fact it can still go one of two ways.
Spoiler for Scrumptious Skittles:

Spoiler for Tasty Dark Chocolate/Empty Candy Dish:

At any rate, nice job here. Hope to see more soon.
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Old 2012-03-04, 17:37   Link #126
Triple_R
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Really great to see a couple very nice responses to my latest update. Guess I'll take the time to reply to them here, before I move on to the next update.


Spoiler for Deikan response:



Spoiler for Kogetsu Shirogane response:
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Old 2012-03-05, 03:29   Link #127
Sol Falling
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My bad for the slight delay in feedback this time. My weekend was a bit more swamped than usual :P.

It was indeed great to spend some time back on the Mami lives side of things. Each of the storylines have their own questions and developing conflicts which are keeping the story interesting.

The Mami Romance chain seems to be taking its turn this time around as the chapter with mostly positive and lighthearted developments. Sayaka's relationship with Kamijou appears to the progressing positively, though with no outright confession from Sayaka yet of course we can't be sure. However, now that Kamijou appears to be just as informed about the Puella Magi world as Madoka, I wonder if he himself might begin to play a more active and protagonistic role. I am not actually a fan of Kamijou, specifically, in particular, but that mentioned I do suppose I have to say that I feel that he was a somewhat underused and negatively portrayed character in the anime, such that I would be genuinely interested in seeing an interpretation of him as a more positive part of the story.

Aside from that, given the momentary lightheartedness I mentioned above in this section your comment about Madoka wondering for how long she can escape the concerns of the mahou shoujo world Mami and Sayaka are entrenched in was fairly interesting. One point where I will echo other posters' impressions on the issue of Hitomi is that this grieving process may have been a bit too fast. I think that the idea behind Mami's words is correct in that one should be willing to try moving on in life and not linger on negatives, but if Hitomi herself is forgotten after this point I may begin to feel sorry for her. Hopefully, after the refreshment Mami and Madoka plan to gain via their beach trip excursion, if no greater struggles or losses are encountered, then Madoka and Sayaka will at least take the time to look back and make a true tribute to the loss of one of their closest companions.

Finally, referring to Mami's "meet the parents" sequence with Madoka, which played out pleasantly; I wonder how many people are aware of this bit of seiyuu trivia, but Mami and Tatsuya were played by the same VA (Kaori Mizuhashi). With this fact in mind, that actually added quite a bit of humour to their interactions.

Onto the Sayaka Romance route, which I am properly located on. Even without that coincidence, this happened to be the most impressive thread to me, where you managed to pull out a conflict and threat to Madoka and Sayaka's relationship which was both unexpected but extremely sensible and believable. Furthermore, this chain seems to have also managed to become the one in which Kyuubey is most classically taking on his traditional role in the series--that is, subtly and nefariously pushing Madoka towards a contract. All in all, very solid development here, and I am in deep suspense over the future fate/actions of Madoka. You've left us on a fairly blatant cliffhanger, but I wonder if Madoka really will, at this point, become a magical girl.

One train of thought I am carrying over from my previous commentary on Madoka's romance with Mami is what are Homura's impressions on the present romantic developments with Sayaka. In Mami's case, I can see perhaps a more direct conflict popping up, what with Mami's casual characterization of Homura here as a bully. However, in Sayaka's case this time, we have a situation where externally it might seem like Madoka and Sayaka have both done exactly as Homura instructed them to, and heeded her advice with full grace. Not only that, but unlike with Mami in the other chain, Sayaka herself has always had a legitimately deep and stable bond with Madoka--something Homura would probably realize she could not replace, unlike (perhaps) Mami's whirlwind relationship with Madoka, which happened almost in a flash. So if Homura allowed herself to admit to feeling dissatisfied with Madoka's peaceful and ordinary happy life, together with Sayaka, while Homura fought desperately and was sacrificing herself to make it possible--it might cause a fierce internal conflict within her and force her to admit her romantic feelings and inner hopes/dreams.

Finally, on the Madoka Standalone chain. I have to agree with Kogetsu, the "Curt Sayaka" section just makes Madoka's loneliness even worse. On one level, at least with the route where Madoka has begun to make a connection with Homura, I'm thinking "it's just two weeks". However, Kyuubey surely does know the way to worm his way into people's hearts. I'll be looking forward to developments on this front as well.

Heh, pretty long commentary this time. Hope you find it worthwhile. In any case, thanks for the chapter; good work .
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Old 2012-03-06, 11:52   Link #128
Coldlight
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Good to know your past your writer's block, Triple_R. Apologies for the late reply, however, for certain distractions have been preventing me from making replies as of late.

A reply for an earlier post.
Spoiler for some late feedback:

On to the current chapter.

Mami Lives, Mami Route:
Spoiler for Mami Route:

Mami Lives, Sayaka Route:
Spoiler for Sayaka Route:

Mami Lives, Foreveralone Temporarily Single Route:
Spoiler for Alone Route:


Thanks for the latest update. It is very much appreciated.

Links to the previous chapters located in the first line is a great idea. My thanks also to Sol for the great suggestion.
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Old 2012-03-07, 22:51   Link #129
Dr. Casey
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Late reply here again; I've been tired lately, and my grandmother's been a handful to take care of. Off we go then. Mami Lives 4 was a good read right from the start, with the sense of tension between Madoka, Mami, and Sayaka delightfully thick, quickly defused though it might have been. Madoka was so hurt over Mami's words that it does make me wonder what kind of drama waits in their future; they've had a great relationship so far, though I guess that with romance there's always some crushing lows to accompany the dizzying heights (The latter of which is pretty much all Madoka and Mami have been fortunate enough to experience so far).

"Into this tense atmosphere, came a voice which had such a contrasting enthusiasm to it that it was hard not feel the nasty clash of moods" is also a very good representation of Kyubey's character, and almost a single sentence summary of why he's such an effective villain. Kyubey doesn't show any sense of malice or hatred, and some of his actions are so perplexing that they seem completely incomprehensible to human rationale or nature (Such as granting the wishes of Homura and Madoka even though he doesn't seem to be under any real obligation to do, and even though it undermines his greatest mission in life). It's as though he takes away your ability to hate him because his mind and nature are so foreign to a human's, you just know that he's dangerous and want him gone. It's a very unsettling feeling, and why I think Kyubey is one of the creepiest and most original villains ever.

I'm not applicable for choice M2 because I'm a bad puella magi and let Mami die, but I would have chosen M2C if I could. The idea of a magical girl trio sounds very fun and interesting to me, and I would be scared of alienating myself from Sayaka and Mami with M2A (Though since it turns out that the story ends there anyway via an Opportunity Choice, it wouldn't really matter whether I lost Affection Points or not). I like the line 'Our love blossomed like the flowers we both care for in the Gardening club.' ^^ I wish that the club was featured in the anime... the idea of Madoka being part of a gardening club has appealed to me since first reading the questionnaire, it would be nice to see it included in the story a time or two more. The Opportunity Choices once again prove to be some of my favorite parts of the story; I loved M2A and think it could easily be expanded into a story all its own. (Kimidori should make Visual Novels out of all the Opportunity Choice endings ) Madoka falling into a depression for the rest of her school years reminded me of Nanaka, the main heroine from Myself;Yourself. Dunno if you've watched that or not, but it's one of my favorite shows and I'd definitely recommend it.

Since you've been expanding on some of the scenes from the story, such as Madoka's seducing of Sayaka in the harem ending, one scene I'd really like to see written out would be Madoka's fight with Hitomi in M2C over the one day ultimatum. It would be a great read to see Madoka and Hitomi come to blows; but only if you want to, of course. And I would have gone for Choice M3B, of course; who wants to go the boring route and try to maintain the peace? Stirring the pot is always the best choice.

Next comes some more Madoka/Sayaka romance, hell yeah. Madoka sexclaiming squeaking 'Yes!' whenever Sayaka tried to strike up conversation was cute... Madoka has a nice voice (The 'I'm Kaname Madoka' from episode 9 when she introduces herself to Kyoko always struck me as nothing short of angelic). Healing Hurts does indeed hurt. ._. Their relationship is certainly strained here, and Sayaka reacts even worse to Madoka's presence in the 'Madoka Stands Alone' chain later on. There was a nice quote from UrbanDictionary that says 'Let's just be friends' is kind of like if your mom said 'The dog is dead, but you can keep him anyway.' Seems Sayaka would somewhat agree with that. But since the pain of unrequited love is always fun to read about, I'm glad to see Sayaka in this sort of situation with Madoka. Sorry Coldlight >_>

Haha, 'You have your own reasons, Madoka'... the part where Kyubey says that is one of the freakiest parts of the series, with the camera going straight into his eyes (About 16 minutes into episode 5). Whenever I first watched that I was like 'What the hell Kyubey, are you trying to give Madoka a heart attack?' And lol at Groundhog Day being an ancient American movie. I checked out some future calendars at timeanddate.com, by the way and if the series is supposed to take place about 45-55 years in the future, then it could take place during 2061 or 2067 (Since those are the only years in that range that line up with the calendar displayed in the anime). Just in case you ever want to pin a definitive date on the story.

Hmm... "For one thing, it seemed like their Soul Gems were always clean even when they'd go weeks without capturing Grief Seeds! It was quite mysterious..." Awesome. I know that I'd be curious if I came across this ending in the VN... seriously doubt I'd be able to get the answer. I chose 12B because it's such a horribly awful, wrongminded thing to say, and I wanted to see the inevitable shitstorm. Luckily for Madoka, Sayaka's still sane at this point and things are able to be smoothed over, ugly though the mood might have been. Kyoko was cool in Choice 12C, and the fact that Madoka's words struck such a nerve is an interesting bit of characterization, showcasing that she's quite vulnerable despite her harsh exterior; I thought Kyoko was very menacing during her brief time in the anime as an antagonist, kinda wonder if there will be some routes in this story where she remains a villain. And I'm curious, what parts of Sayaka's outfit are reminiscent of medieval Europe, and which parts come from 1900s America? (Not sure if that means the whole of the 20th century, or the decade of 1900-1909)

... and in the next chapter, of course, comes the long-awaited harem ending. The idea of purifying Soul Gems through sex is a nice idea, and is actually very appropriate and makes a great deal of sense because that sort of intimacy does clean the soul like nothing else does. (Or so I've heard anyway) I also thinks the ending is a lot more than just halfway-plausible and that Madoka and Mami are perfectly in-character here; though I'm sure that Madoka would be a very faithful and loving girlfriend, I can't imagine her letting Sayaka turn into a witch just to avoid committing infidelity. The line "The weight of the situation would often seem unbearable, but that weight would regularly be alleviated through a night of passion with one lover or another" was hot as hell, by the way. Madoka's nothing short of a nympho in this story. ^^; And I like that she didn't really have any excuse or justification to have an affair with Homura, it's just straight-up cheating. Madoka being a Harem Queen is a lot hotter than Makoto being a Harem King ever was. I was kinda hoping she'd get together with Kyoko too, but ah well...

The Homura/Sayaka chain is really interesting; it's a very nice treat and bonus because it's the chain that's furthest removed from the anime's narrative (Thereby placing the characters in the most unique and foreign situations, which is a good way to explore different sides of Madoka and her puella magi friends), and Jinnai makes for an awesome villain. Jinnai became a puella magi in the mid 1990s, eh... since Kyubey primarily contracts with early teenagers it sounds like he's closer to your age than mine, though it's still an interesting link to the present in a story that takes place in the somewhat distant future. The Tsubasa song 'Sacrifice' sets the mood nicely; I'm looking forward to the rest of this story branch. Love the quote 'Demented dark-haired mistress', by the way

It was nice to see Mami introduce herself to the Kaname family, though it does remind me that I'd like to see Papa get a scene or two where he gets some focus and screentime; he was almost nonexistent in the anime. Junko might be the more interesting character, but I still think Dad's a cool guy and liked his calm, cheerful nature. "And from a practical standpoint, it was probably best if I did accompany Sayaka on such hospital visits just to make sure her romantic feelings for him wouldn't crop back up after visiting him." Hehe. Between this and not wanting to share Mami in the Endless Love ending, Madoka's a surprisingly possessive and jealous girlfriend. I like that. And what's Rosso Fantasma, out of curiosity?

Aww... I loved the romance in the Sayaka Romance Chain. Sayaka's response to Madoka's insecurity over whether she was still torn between Kamijou and herself was perfect. ... damn, Sayaka being so romantic and loyal makes me feel guilty for cheating on her so much in Endless Love. ;_; Poor, poor Sayaka. The way you've been writing Kyubey recently is really nice, with the 'From my observation, humans tends to think this and do that' dialogue. The cliffhanger at the end of the Sayaka Chain is a bitch, and I'm eager to see future portions of the Madoka Stands Alone chain as well, since Sayaka is so much more pointedly cold to Madoka here than she is in Mami Lives.

That about covers my thoughts up to this point.

Quote:
1) How much longer, in general, would you like the story to be? With the Mami Lives and Homura/Sayaka Alliance chains, there's no hard and fast rules here at all. With the Canon Narrative, I want to stick to the anime fairly closely, but even here I could skip over quite a few scenes where Madoka is not on camera if that's what people would prefer.
The story rules, don't stop until you're 90 Speaking as a writer that just recently finished a 3,000 page, 2,000,000 word story that I've been writing since 2006, I honestly think that the most important thing - the only thing that matters at all, in fact - is to just write to your heart's content, however long or short that might be. I'm sure that some people would find my writing style tedious (The story certainly didn't have to be that long), but even though some would think that my story could've stood some editing, I wrote for myself and am very happy with how things turned out.

Quote:
2) What do you hope to see with each romance route? Basically, how elaborate would you like each romance to be? Time constraints will be a factor to some degree of course (Madoka/Mami can go very long, Madoka/Kyouko will have to be at least a bit brief), but I'm wondering how much time you'd like me to spend completely away from action/drama/suspense to simply focus on "yummy Romance" shall we say. 2 Chapters per girl per route sound about right, or would you prefer more or less?
I love the romance, so there's no upper limit for me. I'm sure that you could find some way to distribute an even amount of attention to all the girls, too; I think that due to the ensemble nature of a Visual Novel that all girls should get more or less equal attention. Maybe part of the Kyoko route could extend past the end of the anime storyline, maybe? (In a route where neither Madoka nor Kyoko dies) I don't think that would be too out there considering that the Jinnai chain also seems to take place almost entirely outside the main story. There's a ton of other options if you don't like that one, of course.

Quote:
3) I've been thinking of splitting all future Mami Lives Chapters into three sections instead of the current two. 1 for Mami Romance, 1 for Sayaka romance, and 1 for "No Romance Yet". The alternative to that would be to stick to the current format (Mami Romance/Mami Friendship) and have lots of split spoiler space sections for parts focusing on MadoSaya and parts focusing on Madoka-no romance. Do my readers have any preference here?
Three separate chains sounds good to me.

Quote:
4) How do readers feel about the overall narrative complexity at this point? Too complex, too straightforward, or just right? I'm kind of worried its become too complex (or just too long) since I seem to have lost a few readers since this fanfic began.
Losing readers is inevitable with a story of this length, I think, and would've happened even if the whole story remained as simple as Chapter 1. The story is indeed complicated, but that's just a byproduct of the fact that it's such a diverse story that covers so much ground, and I think that the quality and depth that results from there being so many different branches makes the complexity more than worth it.
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Old 2012-03-08, 10:07   Link #130
Kogetsu Shirogane
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Since I actually know the answers to them, I think I'll handle a few of those questions, Dr. Casey.

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Originally Posted by Dr. Casey View Post
And I'm curious, what parts of Sayaka's outfit are reminiscent of medieval Europe, and which parts come from 1900s America? (Not sure if that means the whole of the 20th century, or the decade of 1900-1909)
The sword(s) and main body of her outfit are the part reminiscent of medieval Europe. As for 1900s America, that would be her cape and shoes, which have a superhero feel to them.

At least, I'm pretty sure that's what a comic book fan who thinks of Sayaka as being rather knightly would mean.

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And what's Rosso Fantasma, out of curiosity?
Rosso Fantasma was the name Mami had given to the illusory power Kyoko seemingly lost after becoming disillusioned with the world... no pun intended.
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... that's... not a doughnut...
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Old 2012-03-08, 22:25   Link #131
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here is the madoka sprite i just colored that will be used in the VN, tell me what you think
Spoiler for Big image:
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Old 2012-03-08, 23:24   Link #132
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here is the madoka sprite i just colored that will be used in the VN, tell me what you think
Spoiler for Big image:
It's pretty cute, good job. Are you one of the artists who'll be producing illustrations for it?
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Old 2012-03-08, 23:36   Link #133
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It's pretty cute, good job. Are you one of the artists who'll be producing illustrations for it?
thank! i'm do the coloring and programming for the VN while a close friend of mine do the drawing
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Old 2012-03-08, 23:49   Link #134
Sol Falling
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thank! i'm do the coloring and programming for the VN while a close friend of mine do the drawing
Cool, good to know. Glad to see also that it's still progressing .
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Old 2012-03-09, 00:03   Link #135
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimidori View Post
here is the madoka sprite i just colored that will be used in the VN, tell me what you think
Spoiler for Big image:
Excellent, but could use a little bit of Mami in there. Keep up the great drawings.
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Old 2012-03-09, 05:19   Link #136
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Originally Posted by Kimidori View Post
here is the madoka sprite i just colored that will be used in the VN, tell me what you think
Spoiler for Big image:
Pretty good. The colors are correct. Her neck is a bit smaller than normal, but not immediately noticeable (to me). I agree with Sol on cute. And I share Deikan's desire to see our favorite characters in this style. So, I'd like to see a sample of Sayaka too, when she's ready.

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Originally Posted by Kimidori View Post
thank! i'm do the coloring and programming for the VN while a close friend of mine do the drawing
It's great that the VN conversion project is still ongoing. I have a couple of friends on a different site who are playing the latest VN release of Pure Pink Pretty Lovers. So, knowing that there are future versions on the way is definitely some good news, both for me and for them.
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Old 2012-03-12, 01:38   Link #137
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just done with Homura Sprite, what do you think? next is Sayaka
Spoiler for Big image:
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Old 2012-03-12, 02:05   Link #138
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimidori View Post
just done with Homura Sprite, what do you think? next is Sayaka
Spoiler for Big image:
Really pretty! The expression and the frame of her body are amazing, but it seems a bit thin to me. I'm no artist but the picture here speak for itself.

Excellent work can't wait to see Mami's or Sayaka's soon.
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Old 2012-03-12, 17:21   Link #139
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Chapter 12
Canon Route Chain

“Madoka, I'd like to meet up with you later today.”

These words from Sayaka, during a phone call on Saturday morning, took me a bit by surprise.

If you chose A for Choice 12, Read Section Canon Meeting. Otherwise, skip over it.
If you chose B for Choice 12, Read Section Making Amends. Otherwise, skip over it.
If you chose C for Choice 12, Read Section Thankful Sayaka. Otherwise, skip over it.


Spoiler for Canon Meeting:



Spoiler for Making Amends:



Spoiler for Thankful Sayaka:



Night finally began to set in on Saturday, after what had been a long day. During Saturday night, I found myself unable to sleep, as a lot of different thoughts plagued my mind. I was worried that Sayaka might be overdoing it, and taking very dangerous risks, in her new role as a Puella Magi. I was wondering what, if anything, I should try to do to help.

Being unable to sleep, I walked downstairs around 1 AM in order to grab a quick snack. After walking down the stairs, I saw my mama sitting at the table, drinking an orange-coloured alcoholic beverage.

I decided to ask her for some advice. I then had a long, leisurely, and pleasant conversation with my mama. She gave me some very interesting advice! I was thankful for it, and for my chat with her. I could only hope that I would manage to put her advice to good use the next time I met up with Sayaka.

__________________________________________________ ___________



Homura/Sayaka Alliance Chain


His laughter reverberates in my ears, while I screech in terror over finding myself suddenly engulfed by a wide area blast of greenish flame! The flame does not burn me or my clothes, but it causes painful muscle spasms to ripple throughout my body as though high voltage electricity was flowing through me. With one vicious and unusual attack, Jinnai has halted my attempt to land a dropkick on him. I come crashing down to the school's rooftop, landing on my side.

I struggle to get back to my feet, as intense pain continues to vex me. At the same time, I hear the sound of Jinnai leaping up into the air and landing behind me.

“Your opening attack wasn't a bad one.” I hear Jinnai say, as he walks towards me from behind, “Against a lesser foe, it would have certainly worked. But how soon you forget that I'm not a mere Magus, but rather a Magus battery! As such, I have a passive and transparent magical energy shield around me at all times. An energy shield capable of absorbing any and all magical energy attacks, including your pinkish arrows of light! But I fear that you won't easily absorb what I do next!”

Jinnai then sprinted towards me, while I struggled to rise to my feet. He delivered a wide-arc kick directly to my midsection, knocking the wind out of me! It hurt so much...

He then continued to rain kicks and stomps down upon me. I started to cry, grunt, and wince in pain.

“How quickly your resolve crumbles in the face of a worthy opponent.” he sneered down towards me, “I almost feel sorry for Akemi Homura, with you being her only chance at freedom.”

His mocking words were intended to demoralize me, but it had the opposite effect. It made me more determined than ever to defeat this monstrously manipulative magus!

I dodged one of his stomps, and then tightly grabbed hold of his leg with both of my arms and hands. With all of the strength that I could muster up, I then hurled him into the air, causing him to shout loudly while cartwheeling through the air.

As he flew through the air, I raced at him while making a battle cry! I then pulled back one arm, before shifting it forward in order to deliver the most devastating punch that I could. Just as he collapsed unto the rooftop upon his backside, his face would become well-acquainted with my fist!

Shimmering pinkish lights and sparks spun about at the point of contact between my fist and his face, as I think my magical abilities were augmenting my physical strength! Jinnai cried in pain while blood spurted out of his nose and he went flying through the air at extremely high velocities. I had knocked him clear off of the school rooftop!


With Jinnai no longer in my immediate way, I turned to one side to see if Homura was where she was before. Yes, she was still being held in the grip of one of Jinnai's androids that were shaped like giant bipedal insects! My magical arrows may not work on Jinnai, but they seemed to work fine on his androids. With that thought, I summoned forth my magical bow once more, and pulled back on it to release an arrow of light directly at the android holding Homura.

The arrow shot straight and true to its target, causing it to drop Homura, be knocked back a few meters, and then explode violently. Thankfully, Homura was far enough away from that explosion to not be hurt by it.

I then leaped up, and cartwheeled through the air, to land neatly next to Homura, on top of Jinnai's immense mechanical flying platform shaped like a gargantuan beetle. I carefully knelt down beside her, and gathered her up into my arms. As I did before for Sayaka, I started applying healing magic to Homura to awaken her and remove her recent bruises and injuries.

“...Ma-Madoka...” Homura managed weakly, “Where are... we?”

“You're finally free.” I said to her, expressing personal relief while trying to comfort her, “I'll explain more once I rush us to safety!”

There will be no safety for either of you!” I heard a loud and angry voice above me.

I slightly turned my body, while lifting and twisting my head backwards, to try to determine where this voice had come from.

There, flying in the air, was the magus who calls himself Emperor Jinnai!

“I must admit that I never anticipated your new Puella Magi powers to include vastly augmented strength that can even break through my passive magical energy shield!” Jinnai exclaimed, “But that is the one and only time that you'll catch me off-guard. The main reason why is that you're not going to be amongst the living much longer. Behold my ultimate attack! Behold SCORCHED EARTH!!!

While talking to me, Jinnai had caused a humongous ball of fiery greenish energy to form above his head, and seemingly controlled by his two outstretched hands.

The ball of fiery greenish energy then started to spin about wildly, helping to create a sprinkler effect of sorts. Smaller balls of greenish fire started to break off from the larger ball, and they started to rain down all over the school rooftop!

No!” I cried, as I couldn't think of a way to counter this mammoth magical attack!

I'll handle this!” Homura cried, as she took hold of me by one hand, while coming to her feet.

I then heard a quick mechanical whirring sound of sorts. Suddenly, everything seemed to freeze in place, and complete silence was all about me.

“What... what is going on?” I asked, as I was mesmerized by how nothing other than me seemed to be moving.

“There's no time to explain.” Homura replied, “You, Sayaka, and I need to get off of this rooftop now!”

With all of her strength and speed, Homura dragged me behind her as she raced towards Sayaka.

Then, for the briefest of moments, everything seemed to unfreeze, after Homura took hold of Sayaka's arm.

“Homura!” Sayaka cried, “What's...”

“No time to explain.” Homura quickly replied, before everything once more froze in place, although now with two fireballs dangerously close to us, “First I need to get you and Madoka off of this rooftop!”

Homura then raced herself, Sayaka, and I to the rooftop's entrance. We began racing down those stairs. Only a few seconds after we did so, I heard the sound of raging explosions and fires rumble across the entire school rooftop, complimented by Jinnai's haunting laughter! These explosions and fires caused fierce heat and light to rush up behind Homura, Sayaka, and I.

Homura, Sayaka, and I raced away from the school rooftop as fast as our legs could carry us! Within a minute or two, we managed to reach the nurse's office.

We then came to a stop directly in front of it, with all three of us leaning over to catch our breath.

“Sayaka...” Homura began in question, after catching her breath, “What's the last thing you remember before being on that rooftop back there?”

“Just... just you and I talking about the arrangement you made with that other magical girl.” Sayaka answered, “And then... very sharp and sudden pain coursing through my body, before I blacked out. The next thing I remember seeing is Madoka waking me up on the rooftop. And for some reason, Madoka is now dressed like a magical girl!”

“He forced me to make a wish for him in order for you both to be safe!” I cried to both Homura and Sayaka, hoping to quickly explain why I was now a magical girl, “He was going to have his androids shoot at you if I didn't make the wish he wanted me to make!”

“By 'he', you mean that laughing green-haired gargoyle back there?” Sayaka asked.

“Yes, him!” I confirmed in answer.

“I see.” said Homura, “This is tragically unfortunate...”

A look of deep regret washed over Homura's face, causing both Sayaka and I to feel a bit sad about it.

“But there's nothing we can do about it now.” Homura said, “Let us hide and take cover inside of the nurse's office. Let's hope that he thinks that he managed to kill us all with his last attack!”

“Right!” Sayaka and I both exclaimed in firm agreement.

Homura then pulled out a gun, and shot the keyhole under the handle to the door to the nurse's office. With that, Homura then pushed back the door, and her, Sayaka, and I all raced inside of it.

We were hoping that we could manage to hide out from Emperor Jinnai here. But it wouldn't be long until we heard several dozen androids scurrying about the halls and rooms of Mitakihara Middle School. Would Homura, Sayaka, and I manage to avoid being caught? Or would we soon have to face Emperor Jinnai anew?!

To Be Continued...

---------------------------------------------------------------------------



It might be a little bit subpar, but I hope it's Ok at least. I'll try to get to everybody's recent replies soon.

In the meantime, I want to comment a bit on Kimidori's excellent artwork. Great job, Kimidori!

My only suggestion is similar to Coldlight's. If you could make the necks a bit wider, that would be good. But it's no big deal if you can't. It's still lovely work.
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Old 2012-03-12, 19:52   Link #140
Kirito
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Glad to see you again with some summaries Triple R. I read them and they're great as always.

For the Canon route I'm amazed you've focused more on Sayaka's change in personality during the three choice selections given. In the first one she was apologetic, the second spiteful, and the final one understanding. I liked out each outcome sort of gave Madoka a realization of Sayaka's new life and change in personality like in the anime continuity itself. It makes sense because magical girls fighting each other and watching one's friend changing into someone different to the point where it's horrifying, is too much to take for Madoka, who's emotionally fragile. The scenarios were amazing, great work "claps"!

Spoiler for True Canon Couple Thoughts:


The Alliance Chain was really creative and funny. I spent the whole few minutes reading it, laughing. I don't know if it's intentional but I got a good laugh and eyebrow raising moments coming from me. Phenomenal job on this chain, you rock as always.

Grading time:

Spoiler for Score:


Spoiler for Advice:


Can't wait for the Mami x Madoka beach trip!! Keep up the phenomenal job as always, I'll be waiting.
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