auronlu: (Default)

Welcome! My journal is a miscellany of Final Fantasy fandom, started on LJ in the mid-2000s, ported to DW in 2010. You may know me as the Auronlu who transcribed the script of FFX as a resource for fanfic writers.

My labor of love is a novel-length fanfic, Love Her and Despair, an AU sequel to Final Fantasy X exploring the question: "What would have happened if Yuna had chosen the Final Summoning?"

I originally posted it on LJ from 2007-2012. As of December 2018, I am reposting it one chapter a week from the beginning, edited and revised. So if you want to read a game-length FFX style adventure, now's your chance to hit (NEW GAME)!

Table of Contents

Act I: Menace at Sea - Ch. 1 2 3 4 5 6
Act I: Operation Mi'ihen - Ch. 7 8 9 10

Full-sized, uncropped version of my Map of Spira is on Deviantart. So is a LHAD Fanart Gallery.

Thanks Where Due:

To many reviewers and critiquers who have given me the encouragement to keep going (I would thank you individually, but I'm afraid of missing somebody) and to FANARTISTS including [profile] cirruscastle, [personal profile] mintywolf, Ayrania-chan on DA and Schmutzige_Banane on DA. THANK YOU.


old stuff from original version of this post )

auronlu: (Lady)
Title: Love Her and Despair
Chapter 10: "Breach of Fayth"
Final Fantasy X
Characters: Auron, Isaaru, cast
Rating: PG
Word Count: 1870
Summary: Operation Stolen Fayth, Phase I
Navigation: Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
Map of Pilgrimage - Links to All Chapters

Our Story Thus Far: Trying to thwart a new Sin bent on destroying temples, Summoner Isaaru and Auron hatch a plan to rescue Djose's fayth. Most of the Crusaders in the operation are kept in the dark, especially Captain Luzzu, who is suspected of having some way of communicating with Sin.

"Sir Auron, I must protest! You mean to tell me they're not even guardians? They should never have been permitted—"

"Neither are you, Father," Elma said.

The priest stood spreadeagled in the doorway of the Chamber of the Fayth, blocking the workers who had been dismantling its frame. "Your presence here is sheer outrage! Your men have defiled the Cloister of Trials, desecrated the fayth's sanctuary! Why, it will take us years to repair the damage!"

"If there's anything left to repair," Pacce said.

"Hey," Maroda said. "Isaaru's communing with the fayth, remember? If you want your aeon in one piece, I respectfully suggest you shut up."

Read More )  
auronlu: (Lady)
Title: Love Her and Despair
Chapter 9: "Memorial Gardens"
Final Fantasy X
Characters: Isaaru, Maroda, Auron, Pacce, Elma, Luzzu
Rating: PG
Word Count: 2850
Summary: Journey to Djose. At the Mushroom Rock Crusader Lodge, Luzzu and Auron discuss an old friend.
Navigation: Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
Map of Pilgrimage - Links to All Chapters

Our Story So Far: Thirteen years after Yuna falls in the Final Summoning, Auron has joined Isaaru on a new pilgrimage. A Cult of Sin has arisen, and some now call Sin the Lady, both destroyer and benefactor. Whatever Sin's nature, she seems to be attacking the temples, and Djose may be the next target.


Three days out from Luca, they were approaching the turnoff to Mushroom Ridge. The Highroad had once been a beaten shelf of dirt exposed to the elements and scoured by the wind, but now berms or seawalls shielded it on the seaward side. Out of sight, leaden waves sighed against the rocks. Ahead, a finger from the cliffs arced down over the road to form a flying buttress. Beyond it, the land was transformed.

It was difficult to make out individual shapes in the growing dusk, but swaying dark fronds draped over the arch in a lush curtain. Nodding white flowers as wide as a woman's hand winked between broad leaves. A profusion of plants carpeted the path below, crushed or snapped by the passing prints of travellers, despite which they seemed to thrive: blue blossoms from Besaid and the coral-pink orchids of Kilika, ivy and hibiscus, lilies and irises, even the glassy trunk of a Macalania sapling with glowing seed-pods in the forks of slender stems.

"Yevon," Isaaru breathed, reining in his chocobo and gazing up at the floral tapestry in wonder. "What enchantment is this?"

"Nobody knows," Elma said. "Good thing it's so remote. Even so, we rescue a few tourists from fiends every month. They forget the danger. Speaking of which, be on your guard. Those vines can hide a full-sized iguion. Nasty buggers— their bite can paralyze. We try to keep the path clear up to the lodge, but the plants grow back fast."

She turned into a narrow cleft in the cliff-face which widened into a ravine. Sentries drew back spears and saluted as they passed.

The path was mostly cleared, but creeping vegetation spilled over the lumps and crags of the cliffs on either side. Sea-fog had collected on rocky shelves and dimples along the edges of the winding track. The larger basins held mats of dark-green pads with pale flowers illuminating the shadowy ravine. Glowing wisps of pyreflies spiraled up from their fragrant blossoms.

"I don't believe it," Isaaru said. "Moon-lilies. I thought they were unique to the Moonflow."

"Well, it rains here fairly often now." Elma spoke in a hushed voice. "Folks say it's Sin's doing. Who knows?"

Read more... )

auronlu: (Blah)
Today's agenda includes getting the LHAD chapter up, hopefully with artwork because I had two great ideas for it before the adventure of the lost? cat and my trip to the emergency room completely ate my Friday afternoon and evening. (Yesterday I had social events all day.)

I also need to finish at least one portrait for the doctor who con coming up Thursday, start packing, and tidy up the house which has gotten messy again between baking with one functional arm, turning bathroom into cat quarantine area, and my typical messiness when I'm in a hurry and/or getting migraines with no energy to put things away.

Also there is a special Pokémon go event this weekend, which involves trading and/or sending gifts, and since next weekend I will be at the con during community day and will not have time to catch lots of the critter of the month who can evolve into something great, I want to trade all my garbage stats version of that critter to other people for their garbage versions of the same critter, since stats reroll when they're traded. Which means I need to get out this afternoon to do some Pokémon.

I think my goal to get up to 50km in walking this week is gonna have to go by the wayside, which is a pity, as I was up to 34 by the end of Thursday. (Admittedly a bit of that was driving around the neighborhood or parking lots, since I think it counts when moving under 15kph , but most of it was on foot.)

At any rate, that is too much stuff to get done today. Specially since I feel a migraine coming on.

So another day is going to go by in which I do not get to things that I keep saying "I need to get to that." So here's the "keep remembering this until you have a chance to do it" To Do list:

-Mintywolf's Patreon and Dirty Paws project. For some reason I am terrible about keeping up with Patreon when I am on mobile, and I seem to be on mobile most of the time these days
- Rina has recced some fic, including an FFV fic I should definitely read
- Owlmoose says DW takes markup, and I already forget how to activate it, and I also forget most of the commands, but they are easier than typing/dictating html on ipad (Which works with the HTML editor but not the rich text editor). I need to make myself a cheat sheet in the notes app.
- flipping keep up my doctor who DW.
-flipping keep up with my DW friends page.

PS I use Siri dictation more and more, and I don't always remember to go back and see what bizarre transcription mistakes she's made. Even when I do, my vision is 2040, so I miss things. Therefore, if my sentences start sounding drunk, try reading them aloud and imagining what a computer hears somebody saying with a muddy American accent and a slightly stuffy nose. Apologies, but at least the mistakes may be entertaining.
auronlu: Sazh with chocobo chick and legend, "FUCK THIS SHIT" (Sazh)
Note: Next chapter of Love Her and Despair delayed due to my stupidly getting a nasty bite while corralling a panicky lost cat (not mine; from the look of it I’m afraid it’s been abandoned. Flea collar, so not feral).

ER visit concluded, shots and antibiotics obtained, I have given up creating art for this chapter. I’ll post it in the morning, hopefully.
auronlu: (Blitzball)
Someone has proposed a February is for Shitposting challenge, partly to reassure Tumblr refugees that Dreamwidth is not just serious posts, and it's ok to post short, random, and ridiculous! Or anything.

i'm terrible at shitposting, but I'm fairly good at absurd icon making, so I'm going to unearth some of my ancient icons from Livejournal days of yore.

Also I'd like to give a shout out to FFX's Blitzball Kid, because he is a walking shitpost.

Plus it gives me a chance to share this adorable fanart by SwankyShadow @ DeviantArt (follow the link to the animated version):


I'M GONNA BE A BLITZBALL (Animation)
auronlu: (Lady)

Title: Love Her and Despair
Chapter 8: "Best-Laid Plans"
Final Fantasy X
Characters: Isaaru, Maroda, Auron, Pacce, Lucil/Elma
Rating: G
Word Count: 2500
Summary: Planning the next Operation Mi'ihen. Is this a good idea?
Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
Map of Pilgrimage - Links to All Chapters

The Story So Far: Thirteen years after Yuna falls defeating Sin, Isaaru sets the mantle of maester aside to resume his pilgrimage with his brothers. Teaming up with Auron in Besaid, they discover a pattern to Sin's attacks: it seems to be targeting temples. They meet Maester Lucil at Luca Stadium to report their findings.


Sin and an old friend...

The carnival ambiance of the blitzball tournament ebbed and flowed around Isaaru and his companions like another world pinned by pyreflies to a gigantic sphere. Fans cheered for their favorite players, bickered over team loyalties, lived and died with every goal. In the maesters' box, all was still.

Isaaru had been uncharacteristically stark, blunt, and brief as he narrated the bare bones of their journey. Now he and Lucil sat between two worlds, surrounded by a sea of noise. Clapping when the crowd roared, feigning interest in a match that no one but Pacce actually watched, they waited for the final moments of a Bevelle upset ("That's one for the history books, folks!") to play out so they could slip away to ponder the fate of the world.

As soon as the buzzer sounded, Isaaru and Lucil retired to a VIP suite below the maester's dais. The chamber was as dark as a Cloister of Trials, despite a few skylights. Luxurious furniture and refreshments could not disguise the fact that it had been built into the stadium's walls as a fortified retreat against attack— from Sin, or from an angry mob, to judge by its defenses. Years ago, Lucil had commanded the removal of the machina weapons embedded in the heavy doors leading out to the stadium, but the peepholes of gunsights and the stripped mountings on the doors' inner faces were a sober reminder of what Yevon could be.

Isaaru settled into a high-backed chair, his guardians forming a triangle around him. Elma helped Lucil into the seat across from him. The maester in charge of Yevon's military concealed her infirmity in public, but a chocobo accident had left her partially paralyzed. Her aide was no longer a starry-eyed cadet, but a seasoned officer with a scar half-hidden under short dark hair and a complexion weathered by years of riding.

Elma gave orders to the sentries outside and shut the doors. "There. No one's going to disturb us for anything short of a Sin sighting. The next match is in forty-five minutes, if you mean to keep up appearances."

"Thank you, Commander," Isaaru said, forgetting that he was no longer the senior official in the room.

"Djose, then." Lucil steepled her hands in her lap, expression grave. "Elma. Provide Summoner Isaaru and his party with mounts and escort them to Djose. Send couriers ahead to Mushroom Rock Lodge, advising the captain to begin battle preparations and await your arrival. We will need his ground forces as well for this operation."

Read more... )

auronlu: (Fang)
Thing I mean to do:

(1) write more detailed comments/review of twigcollins' wonderful Final Fantasy XII fanfic series, moments in another time.

I posted a rec on Tumblr, but it's on Tumblr (boo). TL;DR: Start with A Kind of Integrity for Balthier/Fran awesomeness, then Life in a Box because it's also excellent and about the everyday/lowerclass people of Rabanastre, then a presumption that our eyes once watered, which is Vayne and Larsa sneaking into Old Town so Larsa can learn about social inequity and what it's like for the underprivileged and how (possibly) to make systemic changes, and if you aren't hooked by that time and wanting to read the entire series from start to finish I'll be surprised. Assuming you like FFXII, that is, and possibly even if it didn't quite come together for you.

(2) Redraw that Lucil/Elma portrait because I did it in a rush, and the anatomy and hands are a little weird, and now that I've thought about it some more I have a few tweaks I want to do to their costumes. (Also it irks me I wound up using a bit of very loose tracing to get elbows, knees, shoulders, hips in approximately the right spots... I SHOULD BE BEYOND DOING THAT. I'd photoshopped a Senshistock photo and a totally different photo of a woman leaning on a stick together to get the poses.)

But

(3) I'm going to a Who con in two weeks, and I usually do portraits and get them autographed, and I had better well GET ON WITH DRAWING THE ONES I WANT AUTOGRAPHED.

Oh

(4) I want to drag old LJ friends to read Love Her and Despair as I post the remaster, but on the other hand y'all busy, I know exactly how it is, and there's tons of fandom things and RL stuff I'm not getting around to myself. Still. SEV. RINA. OWLMOOSE. IRA. ET ALIA. I encourage you to read the thing while the chapters I've posted on DW are under 10K words and it's not too daunting.

(Sarasa, I don't have the urge to bug you because I'm guessing there's too many conventional fantasy tropes to suit your tastes, although who knows.)

ok enough procrastinating already
auronlu: (Lady)

Maester Lucil and Commander Elma portraitTitle: Love Her and Despair
Chapter 7: "We Interrupt This Broadcast"
Final Fantasy X
Characters: Isaaru, Maroda, Auron, Pacce, Elma, Lucil
Rating: G
Word Count: 2300
Summary: Arrival in Luca with more fanfare than one could wish.
Navigation: Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
Map of Pilgrimage - Links to All Chapters

The Story So Far: Thirteen years after Yuna falls defeating Sin, Grand Maester Isaaru resumes his pilgrimage with his brothers, investigating rumors of Sin's return and a heretical Cult of Sin. After dealing with Sin-attacks on Besaid and Kilika, they arrive in Luca.

Despite Isaaru's pleas, Kiyuri insisted on flying Bevelle's banners for arrival in Luca. The grand maester would have his due, even if it dashed his hopes of slipping through the city quickly and quietly. Judging by the din from the docks, he would do neither. Other towns welcomed maesters with hymns and ceremonial. Only Luca could sprout souvenir stands and hawkers in the time it took for the S.S. Konna to hoist sails and put into port. Cheering crowds waved prayer flags. Sphere cameras flashed up and down the waterfront like so many pyreflies. Children clutched collectible summoner statues and played dueling aeons while waiting for the ship to dock. Over the general hubbub, the public address system blared a breezy patter, the local equivalent of pious homage.

"Ladieeees and gentleman, we'll return to the pre-game show shortly. But first, here's an exclusive update on today's developing news story. The S.S. Konna has arrived at Dock Three. We can now confirm that Grand Maester Isaaru is aboard. We repeat, Grand Maester Isaaru has arrived! We missed him at the High Summoner's festival, but he's joined us for Luca's most famous tournament, the Eleventh Annual Sir Tidus and Sir Wakka Memorial Cup! And it looks like all Luca's turned out to welcome the ruler of Yevon and the undisputed leader of Spira!"

"While we wait for the maester's party to disembark, Jimma, this is a good time to remind folks of the new security measures in place at the stadium for our fans' safety. All bags will be searched, and machina not approved by Yevon will be confiscated. Sphere cameras with Yevon's seal are permitted. If you're wearing goggles, please remove them as you approach the turnstyles."

Isaaru waved to the crowd placidly while the crew secured the moorings and lowered the ship's gangway. Maroda shook his head at the broadcast. "It's only going to get worse, the longer Sin's out there."

Isaaru nodded. "One more reason to be on our way."

Read more... )

auronlu: (Lady)
Title: Love Her and Despair
Chapter 6: Half-Truths
Final Fantasy X
Characters: Maroda, Auron, Isaaru
Rating: PG
Word Count: 2600
Summary: Maroda calls Auron on his BS. Auron doesn't call out Isaaru on his.
Navigation: Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
Map of Pilgrimage - Links to All Chapters

The Story So Far: Thirteen years after Yuna falls defeating Sin, Isaaru and his brothers return to pilgrimage, teaming up with Auron. Lulu-Sin has attacked Besaid and Kilika, destroying their temples and fayth.


illustration by [personal profile] mintywolf

A Kilikan sunset of amber and gold had painted a dramatic backdrop for Isaaru's departure, duly sphere-recorded by spectators. The whole village had turned out to see him off. He and his guardians had embarked with cheers, hymns, a refill of Auron's jug from Kulukan, and an unusually frank, "Good luck, Isaaru— sorry you're finally getting your chance," from Dona. Now they sailed north, muffled in a fog that seemed intent on blotting out the ship's lanterns, crew's voices, and any sign of a world beyond the ship's rails. The gates to the Farplane could hardly be more impenetrable.

Auron sat outside Isaaru's cabin, sharpening the Crusader's blade that Pacce and Barthello had found for him. It had barely sufficed to cut through an ochu's hide. While that had given them a chance to show off to their idol, it might cost someone dearly in his next battle. He wondered if his katana was still lodged in Sin's skull.

Maroda slouched against the wall on the other side of the door. The steady snick of the whetstone had been cutting the air between them for some time, keeping awkward questions at bay. A delaying action at best, but it had given Auron time to prepare.

At last Maroda broke the unspoken armistice. "So, who was the wreath for?" Auron had gone aft and cast the bedraggled garland overboard soon after departure.

Read more... ) hits counter  
auronlu: (Lady)
Title: Love Her and Despair
Chapter 5: "Pearl"
Final Fantasy X
Characters: Isaaru, Maroda, Pacce, Auron, Lulu
Rating: T
Word Count: 2800
Summary: "Well, I am a goddess, you know."
Navigation: Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
Map of Pilgrimage - Links to All Chapters)

The Story So Far: Sir Auron, Maester Isaaru and his brothers take up the pilgrimage 13 years after Yuna dies defeating Sin. Attacking the new Sin at Kilika, Auron is lost when it disappears beneath the waves.


Auron slogged through darkness. He felt the lash of rain against his skin like tiny sullen barbs, warning him to keep his distance. Now and again lightning flickered, but never long enough to show him what kind of landscape this dream-world might be. He felt parched despite the rain, and his feet were numb with cold. At last, after he had forgotten what time and distance meant, he found a wall of leaping flame barring his path. He braced himself for searing heat and pushed through.

On the far side, darkness took on clarity and shape. It was the black and silver of moonlight, wisps of cloud and patches of night sky overhead where stars glittered. At his back was a whispering jungle, shimmering with crickets and the distant cries of fiends. Its lush, fiercely alive scents nearly smothered him. Before him lay a placid harbor, gentle flecks of crested waves rising and falling like a woman's breast in sleep.

He trudged through sand towards the breakers where kelp flexed over hidden shoals just offshore. When the sand gave out, he clambered over submerged rocks encrusted with shells. Mussels crackled underfoot. Water had never been his element, but it was Sin's, and it suited her now as much as fire's wrath, lightning's flash and icy disdain had suited her before.

There. A glimmer of white. He pulled up short, arrested by the same vision that had spawned a cult. Familiarity was no defense.

Read more... )

Sooo....

Jan. 7th, 2019 03:46 pm
auronlu: (Haz A Sword)
... I'm back from visiting family up north, laden with pokemon gleaned from the frozen wastes. I now have even more respect for those still playing this silly game in rural areas with no gyms and maybe one pokestop within a several mile radius.

Those were wonderful walks in the snow. I snapped some amusing photos of various mons jumping about in real wintry landscapes, as well as photos of real critters like chickadees and my parents' redoubtable cat in the snow, but I'm glad to be back in the warm.

Visiting parents gives me almost no time to do anything creative (or at least, by the time I have time, it's late and I am out of spoons for anything but mindless gaming).

For one of the chapters I posted while I was away, I treid to draw a Dramatic Auron Combat Pose. Apparently 3 years of drawing/painting still life has not adequately prepared me to draw dynamic action scenes... yet. His pose wasn't too bad, but I crashed and burned trying to draw the iron giant and forest behind him.

I am itching to try again, and also to redraw the ship in last Friday's illustration, which I could probably do better. But I should move ahead before redoing things already done.

Besides PGo, I've been pecking away at FFRK but no longer worry about using up all my stamina points. I'm bummed that I misread the deadline for a relic draw and amassed the 50 mythril needed for it just after the draw for Lulu's ultra weapon closed.

Looking on my reading page, I see several friends doing a "Snowflake" prompt of some sort that includes fic recs and other fandom-related stuff. I'm randomly seconding [personal profile] owlmoose desire for more Paine/Nooj, which is a ship she taught me to appreciate many years ago. Also, [personal profile] sarasa_cat has some good shortfic writing community recs.

On hellsite, Tumblr has finally given us a tool to see which posts it's flagged, and I'm amused to report that "I am happy Walter wants to arouse me" got flagged (but was unflagged on appeal).
auronlu: (Lady)

Title: Love Her and Despair
Chapter 4: "For the Fallen"
Final Fantasy X
Characters: Isaaru, Maroda, Pacce, Auron, Lulu
Rating: PG
Word Count: 2600
Summary: Sin's going after Kilika. Again.
Navigation: Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
Map of Pilgrimage - Links to All Chapters

The Story So Far: Thirteen years after Yuna fell defeating Sin, Maester Isaaru returns to the pilgrimage with his brothers. They find and team up with Sir Auron at Besaid in the wake of a devastating Sin attack.


"You have my thanks. And Lady Yuna's as well, you may be sure. May she guide our path and shield us from Sin's fury. For now we sail...to Kilika!" The maester raised his hands and drew them together in Yevon's sign.

A tepid cheer rose from the sailors and monks gathered at the waterline. They scattered at once to make ready the rowboats, even before the torches had reverted from blue to orange. It was disrespectful to the dead, but Isaaru did not begrudge their eagerness to quit this marred island paradise. 

They had worked hard. The beach was swept clean, and they had even washed down trunks and leaves to remove clinging ash. Prayer flags— many of them products of Besaid's weavers— fluttered on poles thrust into the sand. The ocean sparkled under a noonday sun, masking the pyreflies drifting up from submerged coffins jostling on beds of coral. Besaid's harbor had been too choked with flotsam to use for the sending, but they had ferried the dead around to a more sheltered cove.

"Will somebody rebuild here, do you think?" Pacce asked Maroda as they headed for the boats.

"In the next Calm, maybe," Maroda said. "Not before."

Both looked to their brother. Isaaru seemed oblivious to the exchange, although he walked between them. By silent accord they held a boat steady for him to board before dragging it down into the water where the stern floated free.

"Hey," Pacce said, tumbling into his seat, "Where's Sir Auron?"

"For a guardian, he sure doesn't seem to guard much," Maroda said.

Isaaru smiled. Auron was descending the short cliff at the back of the cove. He trudged out to them and stepped into the bow without breaking stride.

"No sign of Sin," he said. "We should have clear running tonight, although it may be another story in Kilika."

Read more... )

auronlu: (Lady)
Title: Love Her and Despair
Chapter 3: "Broken Bones"
Final Fantasy X
Characters: Isaaru, Maroda, Pacce, Auron, Lulu
Rating: PG
Word Count: 2000
Summary: Besaid village: Guardians get a warm-up. Auron dwells on the past (even though he knows better).
Navigation: Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
Map of Pilgrimage - Links to All Chapters

The Story So Far: Maester Isaaru and his brothers arrive at Besaid to investigate a Sin attack. There they find Auron and learn that the village, its temple and its fayth have been wiped out.


FFX Auron Fanart: The Empty Cradle

The sea-breeze buffeting the headland had faded. The air felt pinched and still, as if Sin's passing had peeled away part of the atmosphere. In the village square, smoke-trails spiralled upwards in straight columns. The torches' blue flames barely flickered. In ones and twos, drifting pyreflies chased the smoke like furtive children stealing out after curfew to play in the fiend-haunted jungle.

Below, guardians and monks kept vigil while Isaaru circled the graves, his solemn gestures a restrained echo of Lady Yuna's whirling dance. Maroda watched intently, but for less than pious reasons: he had noticed his brother's knitted brows and taut face. The summoner was waging an inner battle far from his guardians' aid. At last, Isaaru staggered and halted. Maroda hurried towards him.

The maester waved him off. "It is done. They are free." He nodded to the monks, who bowed and fanned out to clear away the trappings of ritual.

"Leave the torches," Auron called from the temple platform, keeping watch. "We'll need them tonight."

"What?" Pacce said. "But if we hurry, we can reach the beach by sunset!"

Maroda raised his eyes to the sun setting beyond the jungle. "If we hurry, we could run straight into the jaws of fiends," he said. "Sir Auron's right. We don't want to get caught in the forest after nightfall. Don't worry. The ship's not going to leave without us."

"I'm sorry, Pacce," said Isaaru. "I've put us in some peril in order to perform a proper sending. But I have faith in my guardians." He winked. "It's like old times together, no?"

Read More... )
auronlu: (Lady)
Dreamwidth let me update the date on a post I prepared and posted privately last week, so I thought it would show up oneveryone's dash when I set it public and changed the date to yesterday.

But it did not. So if you didn't see that a new chapter of Love Her and Despair is up, here it is!

auronlu: (Auron2)

Click for full-size:by SchmutzigeBanane

Title: Love Her and Despair
Chapter 2: "Memorial"
Final Fantasy X
Characters: Isaaru, Maroda, Pacce, Auron
Rating: PG
Word Count: 1700
Summary: Isaaru and his guardians make an unsettling discovery on Besaid, and seek the aid of a legend.
Navigation: Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
Map of Pilgrimage - Links to All Chapters

The Story So Far: Thirteen years into High Summoner's Calm, Maester Isaaru and his brothers take a ship to Besaid to investigate rumors of a Sin attack. Auron is waiting for them.

"So have you been on Besaid all this time? Or did you just come here to fight Sin?" Pacce seemed bent on extracting every scrap of information from his idol as soon as Sir Auron stepped aboard.

Not that the legendary guardian was doling out many scraps. He stood in his customary slouch with an arm tucked in his coat, a dour expression, and a crop of more white hair than Isaaru recalled from their last unhappy encounter. Warrior monks shoved forward to form an impromptu honor guard. Maroda and Pacce, as usual, stood to Isaaru's right and left.

Auron shrugged. "I followed a hunch."

"A hunch?" Maroda said, incredulous. "You can predict where Sin will strike?"

Read More... )

Yooooo

Dec. 21st, 2018 09:34 am
auronlu: (Ceilingcat FFX)
Haven't had a chance to check DW since I arrived at my parents' house -- it's good to see them, but I only visit once or twice a year so when I am here there is a lot of hanging out -- so apologies for not yet responding to comments. i am excite that DW is buzzing with activity!

I'm posting the next chapter early today so i don't have to worry about it later, so please remember you're at work or busy that there's weekend reading available. :)

Edit: Woo hoo, it worked!

I dunno if DW has a "queue" function, so I posted the chapters in private mode on Tuesday, switched chapter 2 to "public" just now, and then clicked the "update date" button to reset its timestamp to now. Clunky, but it does the trick!
auronlu: (Furaga)
O'm setting up my blog so that the next two chapters of Love Her and Despair will post on Fridays while I'm away. (I hope.) I need to make a new illustration for Chapter 3. I should have time once I get there, and Dreamwidth's image uploader is a lot more versatile than it used to be.

I have some wonderful new follows from [community profile] the_great_tumblr_purge! Welcome, everybody!

In Pokemon Go news, there was a new raid boss today I had forgotten was imminent. Luckily, I finished packing and uploading artwork for a calendar I'm giving as a present* around 6, went out to get some nosh, and noticed weird bosses had sprouted on all the gyms around me. I checked in on Discord, found out where local players were congregating, and did 3 quick raids. I am spoiled to be living in geek suburbia. Tomorrow I go out into the wilderness, where there is Not A Whole Hell of a Lot.

Final Fantasy Record Keeper is doing its usual holiday fest. Holiday-themed Hymn of the Fayth works surprisingly well, but is a bit mindboggling..

*There was a Lulu portrait and a Porg on it, plus the ink drawing of Auron on the dock from the last chapter of LHAD. I need to draw more regularly.

Okay, enough chatter, or I ain't gonna get these chapters up. Cheers!
auronlu: (Default)

I'm in the middle of packing for a trip to visit relatives, and I'm also in the grips of a four-day migraine. HOWEVER, as today is the log-off-Tumblr protest, and I have always resented getting sucked into Tumblr despite myself, I wanna take time out to natter about Final Fantasy stuff.

(Image of Auron Logging The Hell Off...)

A few of my things for Tumblr users just joining us.

  • My FFX Game Script, useful reference when geeking or writing fanfic.
  • Two of my best FFX discussion posts: Spiran Geopolitics (I've brought up some of this on Tumblr) and What are Unsent, Aeons, Fayth, Fiends, Etc?
  • My old Final Fantasy playthroughs are on hold (so many fandoms, so little time, and Life Happens So Much). But you may be entertained/illuminated by the playthroughs for 1-6, which I finished.
  • In addition to all my Auron/Lulu fanfic of yore, written to relieve grad school stress when I became enamored of FFX's cranky badasses and chaperones, I was also bound and determined to initiate some Final Fantasy F/F shipping, even if I had to build it from scratch. (This was before FFXIII gave us Fang/Vanille in canon.) So I fastened onto Elma and Lucil and wrote quite a few drabbles and shortfics for them.

Which reminds me.

I like to think Yocun and her guardian were lovers, and that there was some scandal about that and/or a warrior monk and Crusader teaming up. Remember, this would've been the Final Aeon/Sin that Braska defeated.

Last but not least, what am I playing right now? Sadly, due to arthritis and lack of time, I'm continuing to dink away at Final Fantasy Record Keeper (which I've played for years now; the retro graphics are cute and a bite-sized dose of FF is a pleasant diversion most days). Not so sadly, I am involved in an extremely active city-wide community of Pokemon Go raiders, some young and some of us middle-aged gamers like me who are attempting to remain limber by walking a lot. My triumph for the week was catching a shiny Lugia with almost-perfect stats. It's my new baby. Named Antares, because I name all shinies after stars.

And now I'm going to run to dinner and read TwigCollins' FFXII Balthier & Fran fanfic, A Kind of Integrity, for the nth time instead of reading something new. Highly recommended.

auronlu: (Lady)
Title: Love Her and Despair
Chapter 1: "Schism"
Final Fantasy X / X-2
Characters: Isaaru, Maroda, Pacce (this chapter), Auron. Later chapters: Elma, Lucil, the Crimson Squad, Cid, Yuna's surviving guardians.
Rating: PG
Word Count: 2200
Summary: [AU] 13 years after Yuna falls in the Final Summoning, a Cult of Sin has arisen, Isaaru must resume his pilgrimage, and Auron must try once again to kill a friend before his time runs out. They'll need all the help they can get from the Crusaders, the Al Bhed, Yuna's surviving guardians and the Crimson Squad to combat a Sin like none before.
Navigation: Next Chapter | Map & Table of Contents

digital painting of Lulu's face carved out of a shark's tooth Illustration by [personal profile] mintywolf

"In place of the Dark Lord you will set up a Queen. And I shall not be dark, but beautiful and terrible as the Morning and the Night! Fair as the Sea and the Sun and the Snow upon the Mountain! Dreadful as the Storm and the Lightning! Stronger than the foundations of the earth. All shall love me and despair!" (J.R.R. Tolkien, Fellowship of the Ring)


Burgundy sails snapped in a fitful wind that set the sailors muttering. The sea-witch had her ways, they said, and owned both sea and sky. Ships plied the waves by her permission, or not at all. There had been frost at sunrise, great spears of rime coating the rigging. The tropical sun had banished it quickly, but it was one more sign of Sin's proximity. That, and the lightning's balefire dancing on the mast at midnight.

"Land ho!"

The call was hardly needed. All eyes not bent to shipboard tasks were fixed on the wisps of smoke billowing on the horizon, fading now like the last breath of a dying fire. The rising column veiled half the sky in a grayish-pink fume that stretched clear back to Djose. For six disquieting days, the SS Konna had sailed under that gray pall, seeing only an orange smudge where the sun should be. Flecks of ash came fluttering down, dissolving to powder wherever they touched. A stark whiff of burning hung in the air.

One of the harpooners began to sing the Hymn of the Fayth. The subdued refrain spread out in ripples from the ship's bow as roughened sailors' voices took up the chorus. A squad of warrior monks, cleaning their weapons on deck, looked up and added their voices in prayer. On the railing above, a red-haired man in priestly robes smiled and cupped his hands in Yevon's sign. Neither he nor the pair of guards flanking him joined in the singing, however.

Clattering up the ladder to the observation deck, the captain raised her arm in salute. "Your Grace. We'll make Besaid by sunset."

"Very good, Kiyuri. Tell your crew the danger is past. Sin is at least a day from here by now."

"With all due respect, milord—” she began. Suddenly, she pivoted towards the woman keeping watch. "Naya, what's that thing you're wearing around your neck?"

The sailor's hands flew to the bone pendant that had slipped out from the bib of her overalls. "It's, ah, it's nothing, Cap'n. Just a carving of a pretty lady, y'know, that caught me fancy." Her cheeks reddened.

"Sin!" Kiyuri spat, stalking towards her. "The Grand Maester of Yevon sails with us, and I have an idol-worshipper who wears Sin over her heart! Hand it over, or I'll throw you overboard with it."

Read more... )

auronlu: (Lady)
Having edited it, revised it, and hacked out about 15,000 words, I'm planning to start reposting Love Her and Despair, my FFX AU sequel ("What if Yuna had chosen the Final Summoning?"), one chapter a week starting on Friday December 14, 11 years after I started posting it on LJ.

No, the final few chapters are NOT quite finished, so you will have to have faith (as I do) that they will BE finished by the time I get there. But I certainly have plenty of time.

I'm going to post new entries for the revised chapters, with links to the old posted chapters with reader comments that in some cases influenced my thinking and/or revisions.

I hope to add a few illustrations, but we'll see. A few talented readers have submitted fanart in the past which I will most certainly shill.

NOTE: this means the sticky post at the top of my blog is out of date. I'll have that sorted soon, but for now, those links point to the pre-revision 2007-2012 version of the fic.

February 2019

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