Reviews For Virtus
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Reviewer: JennaBennett Signed [Report This]
Date: July 12, 2020 12:54 am Title: A Coward Might Call it a Conscience, a Liar Might Call it the Truth

“it was the woman and the baby, both she knew no longer existed” Umm... Yeah, that’s a hard nope from me. That does not bode well at all...
Oh I’m glad - if that’s the right word - that it’s no-one they know.

“Ask me how I know” How you still manage to make to laugh in this world of angst is a skill in itself.

Ah, the male ego. Sure, go into town without telling anyone, Mike. That seems like an excellent idea.

Interesting to see Mike’s convictions start to shift with the impending danger pressing closer.

“She turned her ear to his chest as if she was contemplating his very soul and he hoped she knew it was hers.” Well, that’s not the most romantic thing I’ve ever read or anything.

"Well, it's too late, he has one." Oh how I love protective brother Jim.

“I don't think I could breathe in a world without you in it." Cool. Cool, cool, cool, cool, cool.

“This was the farthest and longest he had been away from Pam since Before and he felt her absence like a dull ache in his bones.” The way they love each other is the stuff of legends. This is basically a soulmates AU and you can’t convince me otherwise.

“Love and fear come in equal measure, she realized with clarity. One cannot exist without the other.” That’s very profound for a Sunday afternoon. But like, you’re not wrong.

“feeling like a butterfly had landed” YES. Get it girl.

This story. Oh my god, this story. It’s the finest of wines, it just keeps improving and improving and with each chapter you pull us in deeper. I love it so.

Reviewer: DoomGoose Signed [Report This]
Date: July 11, 2020 12:08 pm Title: A Coward Might Call it a Conscience, a Liar Might Call it the Truth

Huzzah, no one died this chapter! I'll call that up as a win. I'm glad the farm is getting more security, seems especially prudent with the mystery thefts taking place, although I almost don't want the person caught and thrown out, because I'm pretty sure Mac is going to interrogate them and then... Y'know.

Great writing and story as always. I especially enjoyed the triumphant return and Brad's comparison to the Ark, that was a good chuckle.

Author's Response: Yes! Everyone survived. The person (or persons) responsible will start a chain reaction of events, for sure. I couldn't pass up the Ark comment, visualizing what that yard looked like when they got back. XD Thanks so much DG!

Reviewer: warrior4 Signed [Report This]
Date: July 11, 2020 11:00 am Title: A Coward Might Call it a Conscience, a Liar Might Call it the Truth

Please tell me that somewhere, somehow Phillip got a copy of "Fellowship of the Ring" Dwight had lying around and has determined he wants to be a Hobbit. Breakfast, second breakfast, brunch, elevensies, lunch, tea, supper, dinner, dessert, second dessert. I can so clearly envision Jim and Pam being equally proud and bemused at his antics. Great way to add a bit of levity there.

Always a bit of a hazard heading to Tent City. You're right, this time the trip seems just a tad more perilous. Lots of tension and I'm glad they made it back unscathed. Especially if there's someone in their midst up to no good.

Nice bit adding in Isabel coming to Brian. It's been a slow journey for them. Seems like a healing journey too. Lovely that they can continue that journey together.

Likewise lovely to evsion Pam and Jim coming back together. You write their connection so very well.

Kind of seems like the calm before the storm. I'm really glad has the vision to try and get reinforcements while he can. I've got a feeling the Farm will need them.

Author's Response: I hadn't thought of that scenario but that would be a really funny tie-in with Dwight. You are right, there are indeed some difficult times ahead. Thanks for reviewing! 

Reviewer: alyply Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: July 11, 2020 01:28 am Title: A Coward Might Call it a Conscience, a Liar Might Call it the Truth

It is almost 3:30AM but I could not stop reading until I caught up on all the chapters. This is so beyond amazing I don't even know what to say. I adore Jim and Pam's relationship in this so, so, so much. It's everything I could have ever asked for in this type of universe. I'm also praying that Brad and his men are actually good. They seem like they are but so did Toby at first and look at what he did. Speaking of which, I am so glad that Toby is gone. Good riddance.

Anyway, this is amazing and my only criticism is to myself for not reading this much, much sooner.

Author's Response: I'm so thrilled you love it, Aly! I know what that's like. I've lost many a night's sleep because I couldn't put a fic down. I have always been drawn to this genre and it has been fun putting the two of them in all these situations and then writing them out it. :) Thanks!

Reviewer: alyply Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: July 10, 2020 11:01 pm Title: Thereís Nothing Iím Planning to Take

"A sound that reached the ears of another." I haven't finished reading the chapter yet but when I tell you that this sentence literally made my heart stop, I'm not joking. I really thought that Mac had gotten into the cellar somehow and I was terrified. I had to stop reading for a couple minutes to regain my composure, only to find out it was Toby being a creep lol. This story is every bit as good as everyone says it is and I can't wait to keep reading.

Author's Response: I'm so glad you liked that part. I wasn't sure how making Toby a villain would be received, but I knew he would fit perfectly in what I had planned for the betrayal. Thanks for letting me know your thoughts! 

Reviewer: BigTuna Signed [Report This]
Date: June 20, 2020 08:34 pm Title: The Birth and Death of a Day

This was such a lovely chapter. Even though they’re in After and things are obviously less than ideal, it felt so lovely and normal and sweet and a great representation of how important it is to have people around you that you love. And Jim and Mike’s confrontation was excellently written. I have no trouble believing that Jim would absolutely do anything to protect his family and that’s his driving motivation. Great chapter, as always!

Author's Response: Thank you so much BT for your review, as always!

Reviewer: BigTuna Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: June 19, 2020 06:30 pm Title: The Birth and Death of a Day

This was such a lovely chapter. Even though they’re in After and things are obviously less than ideal, it felt so lovely and normal and sweet and a great representation of how important it is to have people around you that you love. And Jim and Mike’s confrontation was excellently written. I have no trouble believing that Jim would absolutely do anything to protect his family and that’s his driving motivation. Great chapter, as always!

Author's Response: Thank you so much BT for your review, as always!

Reviewer: Jim-jams Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: June 18, 2020 06:01 am Title: The Birth and Death of a Day

Soooo good, as always! Love a good title drop ;)

Author's Response: Thank you, JJ! Explosions in the Sky is a fave and I just might have been listening to then while writing this. ;)  

Reviewer: JennaBennett Signed [Report This]
Date: June 18, 2020 02:53 am Title: The Birth and Death of a Day

“paperclip ornaments” - that hits right in the feels. It’s so very early JAM.

There’s already so much that’s amazing going on in this story, but now you’ve given me my new favorite slow burn. Isabel and Brian and the unresolved sexual tension coming in strong.

“You. Me. Dysfunctional paper company.” I hope this was the exact phrase Greg Daniels used when he pitched the show. Truly.

Oooh. Okay. I feel like this knife has a great deal of importance given its titular role...

I’m with Jim. What is ideology compared to protecting your loved ones... It kind of shows how lucky Mike has been in this universe to have not had to made that choice yet.

I feel like this chapter sets up the background for a whole lot of possible drama to come. That lingering ominous tone still waits in the wings...

Author's Response: Thank you as always, Jenna! Welcome to the Brisabelle club. I believe AG is in charge of snacks. ;)

Reviewer: agian18 Signed [Report This]
Date: June 17, 2020 09:38 pm Title: The Birth and Death of a Day

Okay so. BrIsabelle first.
The "we." OKAY. I SEE YOU. Damn.
"She was beautiful and he was afraid to move." When I SAY I CRIED--
I just love that she feels comfortable enough to kind of open up around him, and that he is one-thousand-percent letting her take the lead. I just. Ugh.

(Also. I know you said that you'd like to do an entire chapter about them but you're holding back, and I'm just here to remind you that there's an *entire* Karen chapter in HMOH, so like. It's possible...winkwink).

"I just want you to be safe. I can't lose you." Wow MERRY CHRISTMAS I'M CRYING AGAIN.
Listen. Their little Christmas gifts? Jim saying that Jack is his present? This is Solid!Jam. Gah.

Oh. Wow. Angry-Big-Brother-Jim. Go off! I can see where they're both coming from. It's interesting to see Mike still not budging when Jim asks him what he would do if someone came after Larisa, which makes me a little scared for her future...

Author's Response:

You know, I just might add a bit more Brisabelle in the upcoming chapters, more than I had planned, because I just adore them so much. 

Thanks for the review, AG, they always make me smile. ;)

 

 

Reviewer: warrior4 Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: June 17, 2020 07:08 pm Title: The Birth and Death of a Day

First, foremost, and of course most importantly, paperclip ornaments. Bit of nod to canon there in regards to Office Olympic medals? I though it was cute. Nice way of still decorating even though things are much more scares and practical.

Lovely Jim and Pam banter. Nice to see shades of the JAM we know and love from Before.

Love that Isabel and Brian are getting closer. That she's the one to move to him and rest her head on his shoulders is lovely to envision. She's starting to trust him. Great way to keep that going.

Oh Jim, there you go being just the perfect match for Pam. Seriously there's nothing better than having the woman you love just lunge at you after a gift like that. In my case it was ball room dancing lessons. That was a good Christmas. But seriously, it's just so absolutely perfect. Likewise Pam's gift to him. Things to remind them of the people they were Before and the things they loved. Nice way to stay sentimental and sweet.

I also really like Jim giving her the boot knife. Something tells me that knife is going to be very significant later in this story.

I get why Jim is the way he is with Mike. Jim's family is his world. As you so eloquently put it, he'll stop at nothing to make sure his world is defended. To think there would be a chance that something could happen, after everything that's happened After, yeah I get why Jim's back is up. Still Mike seems like a decent guy. Likewise Jim is also a decent guy and Larissa can probably more than hold her own against her brother. At the same time Jim has laid down the challenge if you will, so Mike will have to step up.

Fantastic writing as always.

Author's Response:

Thank you Warrior! 

 I'm glad you picked up on all the little inclusions and I'm glad, you too, seemed to have an enjoyable Christmas. 

 Thanks as always for your review!

Reviewer: Bayjb Signed [Report This]
Date: June 02, 2020 03:26 am Title: Holding On and Letting Go

So good, so good, so good, so good, so good, so good, so good!! Honestly, the Toby death was satisfying. He truly did this to himself and while it would have been nice to see him suffer on a bit more, I'm glad he's gone. I'm also really glad the baby was okay. I was kinda wondering if there would be a traumatic birth or something else there. Truly, the moment of him whispering in her shoulder, ugh so good. SO good. I think the ultimate showdown between Jim and Mac will be really good too. SO GOOD. Can't wait for more of this and your other fic too.

Author's Response:

Thank you so, so much! I have to admit, after having him cross the lines he crossed, his death was satisfying for me as well. I thought about making his birth more dramatic but poor Jim would be traumatized. :) Also, I wanted it to serve in contrast to the brutality of the death and their circumstances. Hope can be powerful and babies often symbolize that. 

Thank you again for all your comments!  

Reviewer: DoomGoose Signed [Report This]
Date: May 31, 2020 09:47 pm Title: Holding On and Letting Go

Well, shame about Toby but I cant say that he didn't set himself up for that. Him giving the radio over was a dreadful bonus, but maybe the crew will catch on and change channels or something? Maybe it's batteries will die? I dunno, that's just my whishful thinking trying to defuse Chekhov's gun I suppose.

Seeing Jim the conflicted leader was a nice moment, because I can totally see that happening and it just felt so in character for the world you've built for them.

Glad that the baby turned out ok.

Looking forward to what Mac pulls next, the salt exchange was all a little suspect, so maybe he'll make it into a subscription plan, Salt As A Service.

Deleted my review to edit and add:

Huge missed opportunity to call this chapter Goodbye Toby.

I just cracked myself up at midnight sitting in bed, my roommates think I need help.

Author's Response:

Haha these are all great comments! Thank you so much for the review! 

You know, I don't think Toby thought the whole walkie thing through, and that's very unfortunate. 

Oh, and I hope your roommates don't think you are too crazy. It was only midnight after all.  :)

Reviewer: JennaBennett Signed [Report This]
Date: May 31, 2020 09:24 pm Title: Holding On and Letting Go

“Toby’s voice was pinched with growing fear.”
Not that I’m all for vengeance, but Toby better feel some fear over this betrayal. Pretty naive of him to think that Mac would just do Jim in and nothing else. Although, I like to hope Toby really believes it, considering he left his daughter there and is now setting her up in harms way...

“dump him with the others” this might be the single most ominous sentence of this whole thing. The others? How many other corpses has Mac collected?! Nope. Don’t love that.
But also, bye Toby. Wish he had made it back to warn Pam (and therefore everyone), but it’s a very apt fate given his arc here.

“dead goose laying unceremoniously near the door” once again, I find myself missing Dwight... He always was good at bringing dead geese places...

Pam says the right person and Isabel starts talking about Brian. Very cute.

“He felt his skin crawl the same way it did when the lactation consultant was all over her breasts, rather excessively he still contends” Oh, this made me laugh. Gotta love a good cameo... I love you bringing it up in this way here. So, so great.

“With practiced ease, there was no space between them to define where one ended and the other began; just the existence of them. Singular.” This is so damn beautiful. Don’t even stop writing, please.

“It was as if, despite the dying, cold world around them, a bit of humanity was placed back amidst the devastation.” As always, this is truly perfect and beautiful imagery. I love the little moments of light. The human connections in this story only seem deeper through the trials they’ve overcome together. So beautiful.

Author's Response:

Thank you Jenna! 

You know, I put the goose story in to reinforce the theme of Jim and Pam being inseparable, one can't exist without the other. It wasn't until I had already written it that I remembered Dwight's lovely goose he had placed at reception, so that was a fun little added bonus.  

Thank you for all your kind words!  

Reviewer: BigTuna Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: May 31, 2020 08:53 pm Title: Holding On and Letting Go

Ugh this was all so tense and heartbreaking and beautifully written! I kind of want to save up all the other chapters so I can binge read and get all the twists and turns and revelations in one go. Again, Mac is so well written! Not your usual bad guy because you needs a bad guy, but a fleshed out villain who actually has some twisted sense of why the way he’s behaving is justified. Ugh, again. So good!

Author's Response:

Thank you BT, so much! I'm kind of with you on reading something in one big take as opposed to little bits at a time. What I can promise you is that, it is all about 80% finished since I don't write linear fashion. I wrote the last couple of chapters first and jump around even though it's laid out in my mind. Hopefully, that means you won't have to wait too long. ;)

Thanks for your review!  

Reviewer: GreenyshEyed Signed [Report This]
Date: May 31, 2020 06:54 pm Title: Holding On and Letting Go

These just keep getting better. Welcome, Jack.

I was wondering if the goose was a FC reference!

The transition between prenatal check and Mac visit churned my innards- from peaceful promises of babies to dark, malicious danger was shocking to the system- exactly like what going from Before to the present must've been like. I loved that dagger twist. A reminder not to get to comfortable.

So many new stories and updates- it IS hard to stay focused! I imagine the next chapter will be pivotal with all this build up and I'll admit to being slightly terrified. Won't stop me from refreshing multiple times a day while waiting though 😉

Author's Response:

Thank you GreenyshEyed! Yes, FC is one of my faves and if memory serves, it was a story Jamie told Bree, but I may have that backwards. I thought I would add it here to reinforce the theme of Jim and Pam being one, an inseparable unit. 

Yes, never get too comfortable in After. ;) 

Thank you as always for your wonderful reviews!  

 

Reviewer: warrior4 Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: May 31, 2020 06:44 pm Title: Holding On and Letting Go

Hoo boy, lots going on in this chapter. Kind of tragic to read about Toby's fate. After everything life dealt him, and as far gone as he was there at the end, his ultimate fate is just sad.

I loved how Jim started down Mac in that moment during the exchange of goods. I've got it in my head that though Mac maintains an air of bravado, inwardly he can't help but cringe at the low determination of Jim's voice. A man who just takes and take doesn't stand a chance against a man who has something and someone to live for.

Nice bit of perspective to see Jim break down there with Pam. The burdens of leadership are huge and I get that he doesn't want them. He just wants his family safe. I also love that Pam is right there to hold him, to love him, and to re-encourage him. It's a great dynamic and you wrote it fantastically.

Welcome baby Jack. Nice counterpoint to the start of the chapter. It's a new set of challenges to be sure, but it's also a a good thing to know Jack and Pam are okay for now.

Superb writing as always.

Author's Response:

You absolutely nailed that insight on Mac. His bravado is definitely a false one and I think Jim is sensing that in a way. Despite all that Toby did to him, he was still super pissed that Mac killed him. Jim can be loyal to a fault sometimes. 

The idea of Jim and Pam being one singular unit is a theme I've tried to weave throughout and I'm glad you enjoyed it here.  

Thank you warrior! 

Reviewer: agian18 Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: May 31, 2020 06:02 pm Title: Holding On and Letting Go

Okay so. Toby needed to go. I'm wary of everything that's happening with Mac, and I'm not sure I like Jim threatening him, especially if maybe possibly they might be able to trade and coexist for a little while. But Toby needed to go.

This is my once a chapter swoon over Isabel and Brian. She wants him to fix her chair. You do realize that they are like the "10% Jim and Pam per episode" and I am HERE FOR IT.

"With practiced ease, there was no space between them to define where one ended and the other began; just the existence of them. Singular." A lot of lines stood out to me in this chapter, but this one just really reminded me that at the very core of this story, there is a them.

Jim identifying and admitting that Pam is stronger and braver than him? And watching him struggle with potentially losing her, and not wanting to be the leader anymore? My heart is breaking.

And then you named the baby Jack and it HEALED MY SOUL. Wow. Okay This chapter was a RIDE.

Author's Response:

Oh, I could go write a chapter on Isabel and Brian alone but I restraining myself, and just sprinkling it in. 

I'm glad you are seeing that message of Jim and Pam being one unit throughout, as it truly is a central theme. Even the goose story, of one not being able to exist without the other, is a nod to that. 

The baby just HAD TO be Jack, right? ;)  

Reviewer: BigTuna Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: May 23, 2020 07:35 pm Title: With Shortness of Breath, You Explained the Infinite

I love the way you build the suspense in this story! You do a great job of having the payoff come and then raising the stakes again. And you write villains really well in Mac and Toby, but in ways that are believable and real. I love this and can’t wait to see what happens!

Author's Response: Thank you so much BT! I hope the build up pays off in the end. Thanks for commenting! 

Reviewer: HeyItsRachiiee Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: May 16, 2020 05:29 pm Title: With Shortness of Breath, You Explained the Infinite

Amazing chapter - yet again :)

I’m blaming Toby - what a rat!

Author's Response: Thank you! Yep, Toby is a bad, bad guy and it might not turn out the way he wanted. ;)

Reviewer: Bayjb Signed [Report This]
Date: May 15, 2020 12:24 am Title: With Shortness of Breath, You Explained the Infinite

One thing I really love in this story is that the kids aren't a huge part of it. They are definitely supporting players but the core of it is the JAM relationship, which is honestly so romantic and lovey dovey given the situation they're in. Seeing them just so committed and in love is really, really refreshing and sweet. Even the 1:1 with him and Mac and talking almost human to human was really interesting after everything that's happened so far. I really love this story and can't wait to see what happens next.

Author's Response: I'm so glad their love is translating so well. I know that this is an overall dark story but who they are together still rings true and it is why I wanted it to be the focus. Thank you for the comment, Bayjb! 

Reviewer: JennaBennett Signed [Report This]
Date: May 14, 2020 11:02 pm Title: With Shortness of Breath, You Explained the Infinite

The scene between Erin and Pam had me crying real actual tears. Is it weird that I miss Dwight in this world? I love that he just handed his address over to people when the world started falling apart around them. For all his Dwightness, he loved his people.

“Mac wants to meet with Jim. Alone.” Nope. Nope, nope, nope. I don’t like that. I cling to your first chapter note so desperately in times like this...

Toby is just the gift that keeps on giving isn’t he... That was surprisingly less confrontational than anticipated, but bodes poorly for things to come. It is indeed personal, and I have the feeling Mac isn’t used to not fighting his way to what he wants.

Beautiful writing, as always.

Author's Response:

Aww, I'm so glad it provoked such a strong emotion! My idea of having Dwight, a main character, die before the story began was my way of making it less painful and focusing on its effect on everyone. That was my hope, anyway. 

It is indeed personal now. If you will notice, he used Jim's first name for the first time in this conversation. He has a wealth of information now to use against him. 

Thanks Jenna for your comment!  

Reviewer: agian18 Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: May 14, 2020 08:16 pm Title: With Shortness of Breath, You Explained the Infinite

"No chapter warnings."

Go back and read the first paragraph and tell me it wasn't meant to GOUGE MY SOUL. And then the "Come back to me James Halpert?"

Ugh. you're so f'ing GOOD.

(on the plus side. Brian + Isabel. He DESERVES HAPPINESS).

Author's Response:

Ha! Well, I guess my secret intention to write soul gouging content was successful. ;)

Oh Brian. He has found his 'Pam' and we are all here for it.  

Reviewer: warrior4 Signed [Report This]
Date: May 14, 2020 07:44 pm Title: With Shortness of Breath, You Explained the Infinite

Jim's shock that Mac knows his family's names does ring true. However I kinda figure they'd connect the dots to Toby fairly quickly. Jim, Pam, and Brian come off as smart. Toby in the past repeatedly was hostile to Jim. Mac is hostile to Jim. Toby knows Cece's full name from Before. Who else with an ax to grind against Jim would know that information and be willing to give it to Mac. It just seems that Jim is a bit clueless about a spy when there's already a clear person to suspect.

Other than that, good chapter as always. It's not so much storm clouds building on the horizon as the dull flat grey colorless clouds of winter starting to form. The kind that blot out the sun for seeming ages. Those kinds of clouds seem to suck hope out of the air. Recovery quickly Jim. This winter could be long.

Author's Response:

Aha well, it doesn't take them long to put the pieces together, I promise. ;)

 

Reviewer: DoomGoose Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: May 14, 2020 07:23 pm Title: With Shortness of Breath, You Explained the Infinite

Gah! How could Toby do that to the group taking care of his own daughter! You've got me Hook line and sinker here, I need to know what happens next.

Author's Response: It certainly doesn't turn out like he planned. Thank you for the reviews!

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