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I haven't noticed anything anywhere say that Aisha's loyalty has degraded.

I dunno, did I accidentally skip a paragraph or something somewhere? I don't remember Aisha directly contacting Taylor (as in, by talking - not by handing her a "bitch" note) since the Leviathan fight. And that was a long time ago. A time that at least to me seems way too long for a loyal member of a gang.

Of course, one logical explanation could be that Taylor gave Aisha some long-term orders... And doesn't remember them (while we're watching) because the last few times we were in Taylor's head, Aisha was in stealth mode.

But considering "...and then things got worse" seems to be the motto, I'm sceptical.
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Although I'm really not sure how Aisha's loyalty apparently degraded so much so quickly, even without a direct betrayal coming up. The note she gave Taylor and her ghosting her for so long are already weird.
Could be the S9 are already in town and have captured her. I recall she was overconfident regarding Cherish in canon. Or maybe Taylor going full 88 has burnt through all of her loyalty.
Is the only acceptable payoff a clean win? I mean, there are literally a hundred fanfics where Taylor and Lisa thread the Coil+Dinah needle cleanly and without loss.

Anything better than: cut scene to tunnel exit without showing anything after prep -> Taylor in situation where she can absolutely save Lisa but just does nothing instead.

Coil pulls the trigger securing his 100% death what as soon as the other timeline ends. Not in character for slimy bond villain narcissist who will always believe there is a way to get out of a situation.
It feels like there were a lot of better ways the operation could have gone so that it didn't end up with Lisa dying. Aisha, shapeshifting into Lisa, etc. It just feels a bit forced.
As a reader.
From a story perspective, killing off Lisa is a breath of fresh air. I like it a lot. It puts additional pressure on the protagonist and avoids anything looking like a Marry Sue.
This fanfic goes new places for me, applause to the author.

My, a bit Doylist view:
The author wanted Lisa to die, so she did. Does that make sense in story? Only if you Ziz it.
Taylor has ridiculous mental attributes and skills. Writing someone who is better at planning and execution in several relevant skills, is very difficult, if not borderline impossible.
Taylor had spent within the story several days planning, evaluating and preparing a kill strategy for coil. She also employed the help of someone with supernatural deductive powers and has several experienced powerful assets in form of the empire. Charms-Taylor also lacks several limiters that Canon-Taylor had, like killing Coil at home in cold blood or with a copious amounts of collateral damage (Guns and explosives anyone?).

This collides with the otherwise easiest author outs for smarter than them protagonists. Namely time, means and help. Normally an author can spend hours to think of a super clever plot and use their world creation writing to make everything fit. But when your protagonist is smarter than you, much, much more skilled, has spent significantly more time thinking about something than the author and has also very diverse and powerful means.... Yeah, as an author, you are basically fucked. Killing off the side character, who would have made all of this worse in every regard? Understandable.
Not believable, but understandable. Except if you go into the canon madness that is the Simurgh and Contessa. Then anything can make sense, because very little does at all.
Re: psyop, I was thinking more of Aisha's goal of being a badass villain. If her op was a success, wouldn't it come with the side effect of painting her as a piteous victim, at least within Protectorate ranks if they suppress it?

Ah, but if the op was a success, they didn't identify the girl in the pictures. And while they did, they do not think that Aisha is Imp, because their working theory is that she triggered as a Master/Stranger from her brother's death, while Imp was already active as a cape before that (and is maybe a Tinker?).

What was that, Simurgh/Contessa directly interfering? RIP Lisa.

It was not. Next chapter will elaborate on things.

Oh god, why is being Taylor Hebert always suffering? Please can we move on into the recovery arc? I need there to be a recovery arc where nice things happen and Taylor makes real friends…

There'll be an arc coming up, that, uh... Well, supernatural Loyalty makes for the very best sort of friends, right? Nice things, though? Um...

Did neither of them think to have Taylor shapeshift into Lisa form and infiltrate that way?

There's a difference between 'impenetrable disguise' and 'flawless impersonation' - it takes Taylor hours to look (and especially sound) like a specific person she hasn't practiced being before.

Can't Lisa just ignore his call, and then they attack at the scheduled time? Why are attacking early and calling it off the only options?

Not showing up would confirm his suspicions.

There were like 50 other ways to beat coil with taylor powers, and even ways to save lisa in that situation easily, buuut noooo, no shepashifting into lisa, no literaly killing coil in a microsecond before he could even think to use the gun...

Not even mind-hands can kill someone in a microsecond, or indeed before they can pull the trigger they're already squeezing.
avoids anything looking like a Marry Sue
That's one of the worse arguments out there, equating a strong character who doesn't make any critical blunders with bad writing. An overpowered character can still be entertaining and believably flawed. This did not read as believable, this read as failing because someone said so. In-setting such things canonically happen because of Thinker 12 interference, in this case making people stupider than they are by arranging distractions at exactly the wrong moments ("pinballing")
For me, the story is entertaining only if characters have actual agency. For Worm, if the action leaves street level and goes into global scale, it means several things:

One, some characters need to be very overpowered - like, say, being an Exalt, that's what caught my attention initially.

Two, they also need to be competent enough. Canon Taylor sort of fits because of her apparent tactical talent and being a determinator, the rest can be learnt over the course of the story.
Three, and most importantly, deus/diabolus ex machina should not in play all the damn time. If you have a Thinker 12 running around, it means both the world and your mind is rigged. In-story, Taylor is not allowed useful character growth, partially because she is tactically traumatized and deprived of useful people, and partially because she can be distracted from making any good decisions by precisely timed events that were set weeks in advance from great distance. Thinker 12 with enough power effectively identifies and masters all key players worldwide, making them puppets. Oh, and also gaslights them into believing they are acting and failing on their own merit, potentially destroying any self-worth and confidence they have. One of the reasons humanity in Worm seems like such a garbage pile.

Personally, the reason I initially started reading this story was because of the Exalted tag, because a strong out-of-context power means someone can entertainingly break the setting their knee.
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I wonder what scared Coil in the other timeline tho.
I thought Aisha. If there's more to it, then maybe something awful involving Pattern Spider Touch? His power could have helpfully simulated the experience of being unwoven from existence.

It was not. Next chapter will elaborate on things.
*eyes slide over to Dinah, whose parents were not saved by Taylor and who is surrounded by sociopaths*
Not showing up would confirm his suspicions.
What exactly made him suspicious without becoming truly alarmed? If Dinah told him "90% chance you're gonna fucking die!" how would Tattletale coming in for torture reassure him? Did he not check with Dinah at all after becoming suspicious for some other reason and he only interrogated Tattletale?
Now that Operation: Coil Dies has been successful (the word tastes bitter), you have administrative tasks you must attend to. You set the girl down. She still does not speak or meet your gaze, but she shows no desire to wander off either, so you ignore her and pull out your phone.

You call Victor, who had been peering at the empty desk of PRT Director Thomas Calvert through a sniper scope, and tell him to stand down ("turnabout is fair play," Victor had noted when you tasked him with this outrageous breach of the unwritten rules).

You call Aisha, who had been lurking in Thomas Calvert's private residence, and tell her to stand down.

"I got him, boss!" she says excitedly.

"You got his body double," you explain, raining on her parade (unlike Victor, Aisha didn't even notice that you were asking her to violate a taboo).

You call Purity, confirm that she reduced Coil's backup base/primary fallback point to rubble, and tell her to stand down.

You call Alec, who staffed Coil's secondary fallback point entirely with body-jacked mercenaries, and tell him to stand down.

You call Hookwolf, confirm that he gained entry to the secret tertiary fallback point that Coil was completely sure no one else knew about and sliced everyone inside to ribbons, and tell him to stand down.

You call Krieg, who was in charge of the main base assault, and verify that everyone got out before it blew. And that the Travelers were allowed to leave unmolested.

"You were not kidding about the giant monster," he says. You confirm that no, you were not. That's why a peaceful resolution was engineered.

You end up really appreciating everything Ops normally do for you. Or you would, if they hadn't been so heavily infiltrated that you had to take over their job completely.

(None of it helped, and you'll never know which of your precautions got him in the other timeline)

It wouldn't do to say it out loud, but Low Key has really blossomed since her injury. All too often capes focus too much on their powers, and neglect mundane skills.

Easy for me to say, of course. But this girl has the makings of a truly great manipulator. I'm tempted to ask her if I can skim some off the top.

"Oh," Scalper says. "Looks like it's over. I'll be taking my leave, then. No hard feelings, right?" Then his face goes blank for a second, before twisting in rage. "You little shit!" he screams. "When I find you, I'm going to pluck out your eyes and make you eat them! I'll-"

His words cut off abruptly when he brings his gun to his head and pulls the trigger.

"No hard feelings, right?" my mouth says.

"None whatsoever, sir!" I reply instantly.

Fuck! Of course I only got the body double, and the Boss got the real guy. I know I'm nowhere near her level, but I really thought I managed to avenge my brother just now.

I kick the wall in frustration. Great, now I've been upstaged, and my foot hurts.

You turn to look at the girl you saved. "Now what am I supposed to do with you?" you say, half asking her and half musing to yourself. The fate of Coil's pet precog hadn't featured into your plans at all.

The girl points to where she's scratched another message into the wall with a rock while you were busy.


Don't talk and the Monster won't get my soul. Don't talk, and 87.54918% chance the Monster won't get my soul. 86.97363% chance. Don't talk. 86.13474% chance. No body language. 88.44529% chance the Monster won't get my soul.

"No freebies for the rescue, huh." She's scratching another message before you finish speaking. But it's not as if you're going to turn down the deal or anything. She reportedly can't lie about the future without damaging her own power, so if she says it will save your life you're hardly in a position to haggle.


Damn. Wearing a new face and costume for this operation clearly did not help at all. Is there anything she doesn't know about you? Depends on what you do in the future, you guess.

You call Aisha again. "Do you still have your paints?" you ask. She's confused for a moment, then delighted.


You really wish you had an invisibility power right about now. Or at least that you could throw on a jacket without smudging the dragons.

But you manage to make it back to the meeting point without causing a public outcry, where the precog is waiting for you.

She's wearing jeans, and a blue denim jacket over a white t-shirt. Her mask is what you can only call a blue denim balaclava. It's clearly made from the seat of her pants (a different pair than the one she's wearing), with the leg holes sewn up. The zipper goes up the back of her head, and it's belted around her neck.

It looks odd, to say the least, but as a veteran costume maker you approve of the approach. She has a clear theme going, but only had to do a single piece of tailoring. Shame about the sneakers. As with business suits, so with cape suits: A snob can tell a poseur by the footwear (or so you hear, you don't know shit about expensive shoes).

"Couldn't find blue denim shoes, huh?"

Unsurprisingly, she doesn't respond. Instead she hands you a sheet of paper, detailing her plan for tonight in neat pencil handwriting. So that's how your dragon power works? You literally never would have guessed. And she's certainly ambitious, isn't she? Well, she's a Thinker powerful enough to give you the odds of each individual step of the plan down to seven significant digits, she deserves to be.

You stop reading when she steps into your personal space, her hand reaching up as if she was about to grab you by the neck. What- oh, there's a small pile of white powder on the web of her thumb. The missing part of your Double D costume. You take step back and hold up your hand.

"Certain levels of verisimilitude are not for sale at any price," you say firmly. Aisha's mom is not a role model.

She shrugs and brushes the powder to the ground, before handing you another sheet of paper. It's identical, except two of the odds have gone down by 5% or so.

"You Thinkers are all the same," you say. Even the creepy mute ones can't resist showing off.


Gaining entry to a Merchant party is as easy as making it there without being mugged. Which would normally be quite the obstacle, but no one is feeling brave enough to bother two obvious capes, one of whom famously beat up Lung. A fair number of people start following you at a distance, though, just to see what you'll do this time.

The party itself is just an open space that's mostly clear of rubble, with fires and loudspeakers (each one playing a different song) scattered randomly about the place. Most partygoers give way for you as you walk towards the center of the field, but some are too strung out to notice anything going on around them and must be navigated around, while others have, through a variety of chemical means, become braver and/or friendlier than the muggers outside.

They are, on the whole, happy to see you. And why wouldn't they be? Double D is a local celebrity, for all that she has never appeared in public since that first time. You endure people slapping you on the back and smudging your dragons - you'd reprimand them, but the volume of the music means that there are functionally no options between silent stoicism and screaming at the top of your lungs. But when a hand strays towards your front you summon your knife and charge it with power.

You don't even have to cut anyone - the sudden burst of golden light sends everyone staggering back in alarm, crying out and covering their eyes. You dismiss it again before anyone can identify the source of it as something that really ought to belong to Low Key, and continue onwards.

In the middle of the party you find Skidmark lounging on a throne of sorts - a ratty couch that has been half-heartedly spray-painted gold. In his left hand he holds a pipe that you're fairly sure does not contain tobacco, while his right hand is stuffed down the front of Squealer's pants. Charming.

He says something when he notices you, but you can't hear a word of it. A look of irritation crosses his face. "Turn it down!" he screams. "Turn it the fuck down, you gibbering assmonkeys!" He jumps up from the couch and waves his hands about and keeps screaming until people get the message, and the nearest loudspeakers go silent. Squealer groggily gets up from the couch and tries to get him to put his hand back in her pants, but he pushes her away and turns to you.

"Well!" he says in the relative silence. "What brings you fine frails to my little swarray?"

"Hi!" you say cheerfully. "I'm a dragon!" You point at denim-girl. "She's your new boss."

Squealer takes a step back, alarmed. Skidmark, on the other hand, takes a step forward and starts describing what he's going to do to both of you for your presumption. Things that are not at all appropriate when applied to a prepubescent girl. Well, she did note that there was a 78.65441% chance that this would end in violence.

You turn to Dinah.

Just this once. Then never speak again, or the Monster At The End Of The World gets my soul.

"Deal with them, and I'll tell you," she says, and holds out her hand.

You clasp it, and seal your pact. There is golden light, followed by violence.


♦Topic: Double D is back!
In: Boards ► Places ► America ► Brockton Bay
Posted by: AstralDeth (Veteran member)
Posted on Jun 2, 2011

(Showing Page 3 of 9)

► Legalize Brownies
Replied on June 2, 2011:
an then mush rolls up an hes like slurpin up shiz all over an he gets 1 of teh bonfires an 1 of teh spreakers an hes like surprise muthafocka an punches her rite in teh snoofle wif a fist thats on fire while blastin sick beets from his hed! was ill af fam

► will_eat_anything
Replied on June 2, 2011:
I think I got most of that. So she lost the fight?

► Unfortunate Sobriety
Replied on June 2, 2011:
Nah mang that shit just pissed her off lol. Riperino in piecerinos Mush.

► will_eat_anything
Replied on June 2, 2011:
Wait, she *killed* him?

► Legalize Brownies
Replied on June 2, 2011:
hes jus joshin ya fam mush is fine

► Unfortunate Sobriety
Replied on June 2, 2011:
I dunno mang that was alot of blood tho

► long_distance_chef
Replied on June 2, 2011:
So less than 2 months after Lung is arrested, we get *another* gang led by a giant rage dragon? Just Brockton Bay things.

► Legalize Brownies
Replied on June 2, 2011:
teh new boss is trousers

► Veteran Member (Not a veteran member)
Replied on June 2, 2011:
Does that mean good or bad?

► Unfortunate Sobriety
Replied on June 2, 2011:
Nah mang u dun geddit trousers is the new boss lol
End of Page. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 , 8, 9


Lacking parents, Dinah instead moves to secure a lifetime supply of candy.
There is absolutely no way that doesn't count as a conversation for the purposes of soul's price but whatever

Deal with them and she'll tell taylor what?

Edit: never mind she'll tell her the info that will "save her life".
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Shardspace is gonna be fucked regardless of whether or not Scion lives or dies. If he does die and Taylor (somehow) second triggers, what would the Titan be like?

With as many Shard connections she's building she'll probably just become a new entity. Eat the flesh garden, eat Scion, fuck off into outer space to eat the rest of their species. Let the humans sift through the rubble of their ruined Earths
Shardspace is gonna be fucked regardless of whether or not Scion lives or dies. If he does die and Taylor (somehow) second triggers, what would the Titan be like?
With as many Shard connections she's building she'll probably just become a new entity. Eat the flesh garden, eat Scion, fuck off into outer space to eat the rest of their species. Let the humans sift through the rubble of their ruined Earths
Brings up a question worth asking, seeing as I never finished Ward.

Daniel Snuts is CLS based on Worm alone? Does it include cosmology introduced in Ward?
Yeah the whole writing avoids Soul Price thing is dumb and Taylor not realizing she's not getting Dinah's Soul Price is idiot ball holding, I hope she does get Dinah's soul.

Also I hate Dinah. All the Worm fandom focuses on with her is her being kidnapped by Coil, and they forget that she was the one who gaslit Taylor into leaving the Undersiders to join the PRT resulting in her getting screwed over in the end. Not to mention all the bullcrap she pulled in Ward. Once again I hope Taylor gets her soul.

Also killing off the Merchant Capes immeitettly after getting Pattern Spider Touch, pointlessly losing out on both new powers and Cape servants.
Yeah the whole writing avoids Soul Price thing is dumb and Taylor not realizing she's not getting Dinah's Soul Price is idiot ball holding, I hope she does get Dinah's soul.
Is it?

She just went through another traumatic event (Lisa despite being a bitch in Taylor's perspective, was still an important friend) and compartmentalized the hell out of it by trying to git dat Double D.

And besides Dinah's a Thinker, not stupid. Avoiding Soul Price by any means necessary would probably be one of those things any social Thinker interested in staying safe would actively seek out should they figure out its mechanism.
You call Aisha, who had been lurking in Thomas Calvert's private residence, and tell her to stand down.

"I got him, boss!" she says excitedly.
I guess Aisha was just coincidentally offscreen for a while.

Dinah becoming the leader of the Merchants is certainly something new. I think it is somehow more funny than it is depressing lol.
So Aisha accidentally killed Lisa by jumping the gun and killing alt-timeline Coil.

Also, at this point things are dark enough I'm seriously wondering if it'll end in Taylor fucking with time to prevent her trigger or something, since we're swiftly reaching the point of grim-induced apathy.
" The Exalt uses this Charm immediately after interacting with a target. "

She was absolutely interacting. She's straight up a valid target, no ifs ands or buts.
The exalted still has to make the roll against the target stats. Easy to manipulate around if you know when Taylor is going to botch.
The Monster at the End of the World. This tells me two things.
1. Taylor does not get better. Figures.
2. She's gonna kick off the Golden Morning. Figures x2.
I wouldn't be surprised if she's the one responsible for golden morning.

Charm combos are no joke.

Creation Slaying Oblivion Kick.

" The Exalt uses this Charm immediately after interacting with a target. "

She was absolutely interacting. She's straight up a valid target, no ifs ands or buts.
Yeah, not sure why he's insisting Dinah shan't be enslaved either? It's not past Taylor to force her. Morally or practically.

Indeed Taylor as we know her should have done so, but oh well.

...oh right she not black. -_- How could I forget.

So Aisha accidentally killed Lisa by jumping the gun and killing alt-timeline Coil.

Also, at this point things are dark enough I'm seriously wondering if it'll end in Taylor fucking with time to prevent her trigger or something, since we're swiftly reaching the point of grim-induced apathy.
That. Would be interesting. I'm gonna wait to see if it shows up in story text. A la Taylor torturing Aisha for her screw up.

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