Date: September 01, 2021 09:09 pm Title: Buried in Our Bones
The parallelism of starting this right where Virtus began, in Pam's vision of The Day, is really good writing. And adding so much more detail this time around... total re-read bonus. "The birds had stopped singing." Your talented is enviable.
And I'm glad to see more of the early days, too - very curious about this part of their story. I appreciate you not giving into the temptation to fill out too much of the backstory of the broader world. In this scenario, they wouldn't know much, and might never find out. It has to be enough for us to know how our initial gang came to be - that's really more important in a world that's never going back to how it was Before.
Also gives us a chance to reset our expectations of the world, and imagine it clearly in multiple senses before we jump back in, and start to think about what the future of this new world might look like... and who might attempt to rule it.
PLEASE KEEP WRITING.
Date: June 09, 2021 08:59 pm Title: Buried in Our Bones
I gasped aloud when I got the email notification about this. You sneaky wench. To just drop this on us with no preparation? And get us back into life in the After while also giving us a hint of the before?? Are you JOKING ME??
This is beautiful and the bit about Before was just amazing. I want to know everything. And then the mystery of the town they were trading with! You are a master of spinning a tale and captivating your audience from the start. Gorgeous writing as always, can’t wait for more.
Haha yeah, I wasn't sure I was going to be able to pull it off by the AQP release date so I didn't want to let anyone down by promising and not delivering so...surprise! lol.
Honestly, I'm shocked but thrilled that people still care about this universe and I'm excited to be back in it. It's always encouraging to hear that.
Thank you BT <3
Date: June 06, 2021 11:07 pm Title: Buried in Our Bones
We’re one scene in & yes, this is the emotional rollercoaster I signed up for.
From the humor of brilliant one liners like this: “I am...going to pretend to ignore that response,"
To the bittersweet musings on their days, well day really, being marked in Scranton.
And the steady perfection of a moment in a park & then this: “The birds had stopped singing.”
“for safety and something else” oh my god this line just resonates. I love that this is the beginning, but is essentially the thread tying them altogether on the Farm also.
I adore these flashbacks. It’s Pam & Jim before everything they overcome has strengthened them in this whole new way. It’s such great writing to show them as still themselves, true to the show, but also true to the characters that they become in this world.
I am so thrilled to have another story from this universe brightening our lives once again!
Author's Response: I'm SO gald all of these lines landed well. I really wanted to show the contrast of Before and After and how everything can change so quickly and I hope that was shown in this first chapter. :) Thanks Lady!
Date: May 31, 2021 06:01 am Title: Buried in Our Bones
I hope my review isn't too jumbled and incoherent because that's kind of what you did to me with this one -left me unable to make thoughts. In Virtus- the backstory you gave was just enough but getting into this sequel, you knew we would need more which you delivered. The lines when they got held up causing his life to tilt on its axis....enemy that was everywhere and hard to identify...explained this immediate shift in Jim from civilian to warrior...further elucidated by ...she needed to stay alive...
Finding Larissa back at the hotel - amazing how for a character we never really saw in the show I could just hear and see her panic and desperation at finding them. The foreshadowing of Tom, Marci and Vanessa being mentioned while at Brian's makes in so much more heartbreaking later to hear of Marci's fate (and Tom's for that matter).
It is the starkness with how Jim tells Pam to shoot anyone not him or Brian You don't hesitate. Do you understand? and means it that illustrates just how cosmic the shift is, how instantly the world has gone from Before to After - 2 simple words that you've attached more meaning to than I thought ever possible through the rest of the words that fill out these pages.
I wasn't sure who Abby belonged to at first, then realized I didn't need to just when I got it. Family need not be actually related here. Bonds were stronger than blood.
The scene with his concern about her hair was much needed levity as was the bit in the car with Mike.
Oh and I'll say again the last scene was visceral and haunting and this is going to be some dark sh*t. But even though you might not guess it because I write mostly cotton candy - I am fascinated by dark. Bring it on - can't wait.
Thank you for picking up on that change in Jim. It needed to be quick and fierce. It is one of the reasons he has kept them alive as long as he has. I mentioned the entire scene in the first Virtus, when Jim was explaining to Mike how he came to be the way he was with guns and fighting and so I wanted to pull that back here and elaborate more.
Tom's story will unfold more and I wanted to show that contrast of what might have happend to Jim if things had played out differently for him.
It's funny you mention not knowing who Abby belonged to and that all the children are sort of are raised by everyone and that is very insightful and true. She is Isabel and Brian's which is why Isabel said she would take her and Brian just automatically picked her up when he came in the room.
I LOVE that you are fascinated by the dark, because in case it wasn't clear by my writing of these two fics -- same. :) Thanks!
Date: May 30, 2021 06:08 pm Title: Buried in Our Bones
"The birds had stopped singing." This is where I realized I'd been holding my breath as I read the paragraphs before it and remembered to breathe. That sentence is absolutely devastating.
"It all fell apart so fast, he thought bleakly. Lawless survival had overtaken every part of civility; how fragile their sense of control on things was." It's fine. We're all fine. I hate the punk-ass kids who robbed them, but I also kind of appreciate the way you wrote something like that happening so quickly. A lesser author would have made this journey easy on Jim and Pam, but you're putting them through it right from the start and while I hate it, I appreciate it.
"Migrations from places that were gone had continued on; yellow skies and poisoned waters driving people in the direction of the untainted." I have nothing to say about this except that I'm seriously so envious of the way you string words together.
"She kissed him like she had done a hundred times but this time lingered a little longer, pulling him a little tighter to her for good measure. It couldn't hurt, she reasoned." I really love the bit of symmetry between this goodbye and the one in the scene before it. Also, I'm just really glad that they're still really in love with each other.
Thank you for the bit of humor between the guys in the truck because I really needed a moment to breathe properly because knowing you, I knew that they're trip wasn't going to be quick and easy. And you didn't disappoint. Ugh, I can't wait to see what's going on here. Also, they're rebuilding the government, you say? President Halpert has a nice ring to it.
I am so, so glad you decided to treat us to a sequel! I'm already worried for a few Farm dwellers but it's so good to see everyone's living as best as they can right now. Can't wait to see how you ruin that.
I really love that you liked the bird sentence. I wasn't sure if that would translate the feeling of her noticing something so small and yet significant and the foreshadowing of how bad it would eventually become. And oh yeah, I wanted to put them through it right away and by doing so conveying the surreal feeling of 'this can't be happening' that you know they would have.
In the present, you know when they get happy and comfortable, shit is about to get worse. That's just the way it is. Lol. I love your reviews as always! Thanks!
Date: May 30, 2021 05:51 pm Title: Prologue
"What was worth fighting for was buried in our bones, a cry from our souls, and it was louder and clearer every day. The fight to survive was always that, to claim and conquer needs before, or in spite of, someone else. The enemy to come was more than any monster, the human kind far more nefarious."
You. You are the monster here.
Just kidding. Sort of. I should be used to the way you make me feel about fictional characters, but well, here I am. Still surprised. And still loving every single second of it.
Author's Response: There is so much about this that made me laugh. I know you know why. Thank you though for encouraging me with this. It won't be too terribly painful...maybe? ;)
Date: May 30, 2021 04:55 pm Title: Prologue
Your stories are why I keep coming back, obsessively checking for updates.
So much for getting any work done. Better go back and reread Virtus.
LET'S DO THIS.
Author's Response: Haha what a HUGE compliment, thank you! I hope you enjoy the reread too. I have learned a lot in a year and it was great to go back and fix some things that had been bugging me. :) Thanks!
Date: May 29, 2021 09:28 pm Title: Prologue
It’s great to see this story continued. I was always curious as to how the whole story began - or at least, what caused the whole world to collapse.
Will you be adding flashbacks continuously throughout the story? I’d also be curious to see how Dwight died.
Regardless, I’m glad Virtus is continuing, and I can’t wait to read more. This story had me hooked from the beginning.
Author's Response: Thank you! Yes, there will be flashbacks that fill in more of the backstory and tie into things/decisions in the present. Thanks for commenting!
Date: May 29, 2021 12:45 am Title: Buried in Our Bones
So, just diving right in. It may sound odd, but I kind of liked getting some of the backstory of the transition from Before to After. What events led them from almost moving to Austin to where they all find themselves now? Your writing is as evocative as ever. We can feel the fear, the desperation in the Halperts as they start to navigate this new reality.
Sad to hear about Marci. And Tom for that matter. Hopefully with blood relations nearby as well as Vanessa he won't go the route Toby did.
An entire town empties, the elderly left to rot in the sun, and Libertas etched on the wall. Something tells me this doesn't bode well. Especially if a seemingly well defended town like that could fall. The Farm does seem like it's in a better place, but still. This new threat seems worrying. Looking forward to seeing where we go from here. Also thank you for the promise about the JAM family, though I'm sure even they won't escape whatever you have planned without a few more scars.
Author's Response: Thank you! I'm hoping to fill in a little more of the backstory in this one and how it will shape the decisions and choices made in the present. And yes, their world is going to get so much bigger in this one and the enemy will be entirely different. Thanks!
Date: May 29, 2021 12:26 am Title: Prologue
So I'm already in love with this. The imagery of the pipes and drums and what they mean, especially in this world, is stirring and yet at the same time there a hint of ominousness there. They've already been through so much, what else could there be to deal with? Well a lot when one thinks about it, but still. Great way to set the tone as we dive back into this world.
Author's Response: Thank you warrior! It's kind of great writing this story again. :)
Date: May 28, 2021 06:42 pm Title: Buried in Our Bones
I can't... I can't handle getting this in chapters. I need the full on novel so I can stay up until dawn fully immersed in it.
Author's Response: I wish everything in my head was all written already too. So much easier. Lol. Thanks for supporting this little adventure into Virtus again. It means more than you know. ;)
Date: May 28, 2021 06:32 pm Title: Buried in Our Bones
You are the worst.
An absolute monster.
And I love you.
I hope you’re proud of yourself.
Author's Response: Haha I love you too and THANK YOU for your encouragement with this. I promise it will only hurt a little. ;)
Date: May 28, 2021 06:01 pm Title: Prologue
"What was worth fighting for was buried in our bones..."
"The drums were always there, beating ceaselessly against fate and time.."
I'm equally afraid of and excited for what you're about to do to us based on prologue and cover art alone. Thank you for blessing us on this quietest of days ;)
Author's Response: I love that you appreciate the cover art more than you know. ;)
Date: May 28, 2021 05:55 pm Title: Buried in Our Bones
I love you and I already love this story. I loved all the background you gave us and the small look into what's to come. Their hellos and goodbyes are one of my top favorite parts of Virtus and I can tell it's going to be the same here.
Author's Response: I really love that you love their hellos and goodbyes because, in my mind, they are so significant too when there so many threats that can separate them. Thanks lady, as always. :)
Date: May 28, 2021 05:20 pm Title: Prologue
Um. Excuse me? I mean I was hoping with every fiber of my being that you would write a sequel but I can't believe it's here.
Drums were a rhythm, a reminder of being alive: a heartbeat, a tempo of the cosmos.
How do you come up with this stuff? It's so, so good. Thank you John Krasinski for writing A Quiet Place 2 so we can get this masterpiece, amen.
Haha, oh how I love your comments. I don't know how it comes to me but if I stare at my screen long enough the words appear. Lol.
Thank you as always and yes, always thank you to JK for being JK. :)