Mirror Vulcan, Mirror Not

JMK758:

Great story. I can't wait to see what happens next.

Polgara la Fae:

Great job! I just finished reading it, and you're a really good writer (I knew that before, but the dialogue and such was really true to character)

Aria:

I think this story is great!! I love the romance between Saavik and Spock- how you incorporate his parents situation in the equation as well. The emotions were real and I love the trial the best. He made a good argument! The one I love the best is the Romulant. The humor was most appreciated. I read this in one setting which took me a while but it was worth it. Keep up the good work : )

Chris Horvath

I'm not sure what exactly is the best part of this story. Is it recognizing characteristics of the Spock we've come to know in his alternate? It is so interesting to watch the changes occurring within the Empire as Spock, Saavik and their 'followers' reorganize what is theirs. This story is taking place on so many different levels. The Empress and Sarek and their plans. Kirk and his plans. Spock and Saavik and their plans (gee, guess who I'm cheering for). And the interpersonal relationships are great...all those levels, the professional and the private. My fav, of course, is the relationship between Spock and Saavik. I love where this is going, even though I can't quite figure out exactly where it is going. But I'm hoping it works out for them.

I really enjoy your writing style. It pulls you right into the story and you forget you're anywhere else.

Chapters 1 & 2:

Wow. What a great story. I'm at work and I read straight through it, hoping the phone wouldn't ring and that no one would need me for anything. Great writing, great plot, interesting insights into the characters (and what drives them). I can't wait for the next part (there IS a next part, right?). I'm wondering just what Stron and T'Mes's 'duty' requires them to do...I don't think it bodes well for Spock and Saavik, though. I can't wait to see how they handle the next challenges.

Chapters 3 - 5:

I can sometimes figure out what direction a story is heading in. Not with this story. Each sentence is a surprise to me, each paragraph a surprising delight. I can't wait to read the next chapters. Thanks for posting so quickly.

Chapters 4 - 8:

Great story! This story reminds me of the TV show Mission:Impossible, with all of its twists and turns, suprises and delights. I am SO enjoying this, you just can't imagine. I enjoy these characters and am happy that so many of them are fleshed out (not just the main characters). I'm hoping that this isn't the last chapter? That more will follow? Please don't let this be one of those "leave the ending to the imagination of the reader" endings!!! Thanks for inviting us into this world, it was a great visit.

Jalynrn:

Chapters 1 - 3:
Excellent first three chapters, Kerry! You're posting faster than I can read! The emotion between Spock and Saavik is just beautiful. I always knew he had it in him!

Chapters 4 - 6:
Ughhh.. what a place to stop! This, I believe, is known as a cliffhanger! *sigh*... well... I can only project my wishes on this one... please don't separate them... either by death or space... Their loyalty to each other is awe inspiring. I meant to add in the first review how impressed I was with the action sequences and the battles. Very well done. Some would have been lost immediately, but you kept it clean and neat... well, as clean and neat at war can be!

Chapter 7:
OOh Kerry! I am almost speechless... The emotion you conveyed with this section was so moving that at once point I actually had to stop and make myself breath! I've been unable to read for several days and was so hoping that there was a new section up! Thank you for not disappointing me!

Chapter 8:
Oh... is this the end? No, no, no! I want at least another section! LOL.... very well done Kerry. I can only reiterate that which I have already said. The emotions and actions of Spock and Saavik for each other are amazing. I was a bit disconcerted when I thought that Demora was to be killed, but then... I should have known better, huh? Beautiful ending and may I say what a perfect set up for a sequel? hint hint

Heather:

Chapters 1 - 4:
First of all, I want to say something to Kerry. Kerry, if you kill Saavik, I am never speaking to you again. Spock has suffered enough and Saavik deserves happiness. Kudos to you for stirring my emotions!!!

I really like the way everything is so detailed and plotted right now. It is obvious that you've worked very hard on this to make everything mesh and came up with sensible explanations that easily fit in this universe. I'm also glad that Spock and Saavik are together and the explanation sbehind her past. And of course, Sarek and Spock still don't get along, but some things should never change, regardless of the universe. =)

Chapter 5:
I like how T'Pau has the same oomph in this universe as she does in our universe ... well, not ours exactly, but you know what I mean.

I love the part where Spock's control breaks. I also love how Saavik never regrets her decision, even though it could (Huge dire threats here!) cost her her life.

I didn't mention it before, but I thought that the scene where Saavik offers Spock anyone to save his life was very touching and a great way of showing her feelings for him. Even though it would have crushed her.

**But she could see in his eyes that he didn't believe it.*** Grrr. If you kill her...

I was in hysterics when Stron gave his esimation!! How Vulcan. And I had chills during the scene where Saavik is contemplating suicide.

I was in hysterics when Stron gave his estimation!! How Vulcan. And the part -- **The blast caught him full in the groin.** OUCH!!! And then you catch me and give me chills during the scene where Saavik is contemplating suicide.

Good action, everything was paced and nothing slowed it down.

Chapter 6:
You know, Kirk has a horrible bedside manner. If nothing else, his little speech should motivate Saavik to come back from the dead.

**He sounded exhausted, broken, drained. She flinched at his voice, feeling his Vulcan discipline and what was held behind it. She twisted about, trying in vain to find him as she might search for him in the dark.** Okay, you know what? I think, considering what Spock was planning to do, he has no right to ask that, nor make Saavik feel guilty. Saavik would have leapt into death rather than go with the guy who's name I can't spell but is very sarcastic and witty.

Oooooooo! Saavik was pregnant ...

And I loved the last scene between Kirk, Spock, and McCoy. Good job, Kerry. I enjoyed reading the power play between the three who have no ties to one another, yet should be the closest friends.

Chapter 7, part 1:
**Put aside Kirkís hurry now to remove the battle scars off of the ship so they could leave to get more.** Hehe. After all, it's not any fun if you scar something that somebody else got to first.

You know, the whole Vulcans respecting life thing raises an interesting question. How much of a life does a hybrid have on Vulcan? In lieu of their treatment towards Saavik, are they really respecting life? Or respecting the blood that flows through the veins of a hybrid, but not the spirtual life, the emotional part? The part that requires a home and an identity?

I liked the pacing in this scene. Everything was clearly explained, but at a steady rate and the tone was not condescending. Nor did you focus on what we already knew. Good job!

Chapter 7, part 2:
Sagar's comments about Saavik's condition ring with authority.

**Still, the thought that he had stood by while she was beaten, causing the miscarriage he now mourned, was unforgettable.** Wow. I forgot about that. Sarek watched his grandchild die, in a manner of speaking. Shivers.

**"I must live long enough to kill him," Saavik said calmly.** Yes, she should.

I may have missed this part, but what was Spock's inheritance from the Grayson family?

While I'm not liking Sarek at this point, I also deeply admire his concern for his son -- and not just b/c his son is the only heir he has but b/c Spock is Sarek's link to Amanda.

Chapter 7, part 3:
**"We donít know if I have a counterpart or what she is like. No doubt, she has never fought a day in her life." He felt her bitterness just on the edge around them. "She is probably well coddled and spoiled." ** OOO. Not so much.

I love this part. It's refreshing and sobering at the same time. Spock and Sarek are going to have issues about this.

Chapter 8, part 1:
Wow. That was *nicely* paced. You captured the action perfectly and nothing dragged. Good job!!

Chapter 8, part 2:
You do realize how infuriating it is not to know what happened after Kirk saved the day.

**"Surely you have more than these few people, Spock. Can no one else go to their aid?"*** Nice.

**Vulcan would never accept Saavik, never take her in, and never acknowledge her. And he gave them the argument to do it.** I think, though, that if I were Saavik, while a small part of me might like to be acknowledged as a Vulcan, most of me wouldn't want too, only b/c Vulcan would not have willinly accepted me, but b/c they were argued into it. And she would always know that they didn't truly do this out of the goodness of their heart.

**Three of her rings hid hypos for poisons, a fourth contained acid.** Don't leave home without them.

I couldn't believe my ears when I read what Kirk was doing. he's a sleaze!! I'm not supposed to like him!!

**Perrin** Sarek's going to control the EMpire? I sense a sequel!!!

**"I believe you have the files on Demora Sulu, our Captain Suluís daughter? Arrange this matter for me."**** evil. Is this a good time to mention the world called "a circle"? Sulu is going to have to retaliate for this. it's a wonder that anyone in this galaxy has children.

I like McCoy. He's still a ... well, decent is the highest thing you can say about most people here.

The 'conversation' btw. Spock and Saavik was very nice and funny.

Chapter 8, part 3:
**Sulu, of course, was told they were dead, and Soluk had provided convincing camera footage to support that idea, much as he had years ago with Saavikís faked booth recording for Kirk.** Oh, good. Spock didn't kill them.

I'm not sure if I got the end. It stops when Spock is trying to draw her out of the trance. Is there more?

Saavant:

Chapters 1 & 2:

This is great so far, Kerry! Captures a bit of the essence of "Vulcan's Heart," while continuing the dark and dangerous feeling of the political and power struggles in your previous Mirror Vulcan story. Very strong, very passionate. I look forward to seeing the rest of it.

Remaining chapters:

I *loved* the story, including (perhaps especially) those last chapters.

The thing that amazes me about your writing, Kerry, is how complex and multi-layered you make everything, and it all fits together like a puzzle. You should write mystery movels or thrillers or something-- anyway, something with a lot of plot. Because that is what you have, a lot of plot. This was wonderful!

I especially liked Spock's defense. I'd been expecting some scenario where they would turn out to be bonded and so any threat on Saavik's life was a threat on Spock's. But for Spock to be able to solve the problem with that ever-so-logical argument was just so brilliant and so... *Spock.*

Also, unique way of portraying a mind meld. Lots of writers make it seem like something very abstract and not at all visual, not having to do with any of the physical senses. But the inside of a mind really is more like what you describe, isn't it? Moving from one scene to another; scenes based on visual and other physical memories. Most of our experiences are with the physical senses, and so our thoughts have a physical focus most of the time. At least mine do (though my head is the only one I can claim to have been in).

There is so much else I could probably say, but that's what comes to mind immediately. Excellent work!!!

Shy_Introvert:

Chapters 1 & 2:

I'm so glad you're writing a sequal to your mirror universe story. It seemed to need one.

Remaining chapters:

I really, really loved this fic. The Saavik and Spock of the mirror universe are facinating characters. I'm glad Spock didn't have Demora killed. That would have seemed extreme even for mirror Spock. Will there be a sequal to this sequal? Please?

Marla:

Chapter 1, part 1:

I LIKE! What I think I really like is how you've caught the characters' entire beings in the details. Their thoughts, their mannerisms, their speech patterns, their body language, all of it remains uniquely their own. That's one of the real hard parts of multi character writing, to make sure the single voice of the author does not turn only one sound out. There is rhythm to all of them and it is different for each. -- I also like how you move quickly. I like the honor given in the natural assumption you make that the reader is intelligent enough to catch the hidden ST history stuff, and all the currents you're presenting, including the complexity of the plot. I DON"T like it when authors talk dumb to me. When they launch into info dumps ALL the time. Granted, every story needs info dumps at times but a lot of new writers do it with nearly every breath. THANKYOU for letting ME figure things out AS the characters do. -- I must also cheer how well you've managed to run everything with such a wide number of "supporting cast". It is easy to write a good story with just 4 people living in it. It is infinitely harder to write one in which the main characters AND the supporting ones receive depth building. The further I get into your story, the more these people flesh out naturally and become necessary parts of the plot. Very nice.
 

Chapter 2, part 1:

The best thing about ch 2 pt 1 is the utter near bursting barely contained violence. The too many predators shoved into too small a space boiling thing. I really like the verbal battles you've got waging here--some one on one, some one side against the other, some everybody at everybody, and some one on itself. This makes an amazing beauty of layers upon layers, giving an intricacy of writing that takes several reads to fully appreciate---while only requiring one to "get it" perfectly. Very lovely art. I also must say that I REALLY like how you don't over dramatize or soap it. The utter love and loyality between Spock and Saavik is a complete understanding in the reader's mind. Steady, sure, complete, and backed by fire. It is an immature writer who thinks that writing simply a sex scene portrays the love between two characters. It does not. What shows love is the same things that show it in real life, all the words, the thoughts, the feelings, the actions of every moment and day. If those build up to the sex scene, THEN it is good writing. (Like I like the one story with the gentle awkwardness of Spock and Saavik making love for the first time that someone here wrote.[Mindy's Bonded]) It's the build up that gives the end the power of completion, of fullness, of reality, of romance. And that takes good writing and patience, because humans are if anything dabblers.

Chapter 2, part 2:

That was one of the most beautiful descriptions of Saavik that I've ever read.

I like the way you've got the scene itself caught---dust and wind and lots of stark images. Characters are caught between deep sudden thoughts and hope wishes and utter thoughtless survival response. The utter personality of parts with Spock and Saavik is balanced with the impersonality given "the Romulans", "the prisoners", "the Vulcan guard". They are left as shadows befitting their world, while Spock and Saavik are vivid and not belonging to them. And this very much fits the action needs of the chapter.

You've got a very good grip on speed---knowing when to slow and pool and when to race.

I like how you remember color and feel and taste and smell and touch and feelings and thoughts with your characters and settings. And you don't just use them in the beginning to "set the place" and then stop. You keep them coming and it gives life and being to everything.

Chapter 2, part 3:

This was incredible. Damn.

Chapter 3, part 1:

THAT was fun!

Superb blend of action and thought and emotion and talking.

Beautiful and humorous and terribly painful and sad all at once. They're trying to squeeze a lifetime of lovers into a few days and it hurts even as it fills.

Chapter 3, part 2:

Sigh, oh hell the good guys just never win do they???

I really like how you've moved between such a personal beautiful and painful time to a very open battle.

It is horrifying to think of what everyone finds they "must do". Very real. And very scary.

You've got everything prep'd and falling apart for them so fast that it makes Romeo and Juliet look like they had a lifetime.

Chapter 4, part 1:

What I like the best about this part 1 is how beautifully you move from thought and feeling to doing. This part is essentially a "quiet" scene, a meditative shot that links all the action previous to all the stuff still to come. Allowing the characters to actually think over their entrapment and danger without falling into the false heaviness of forced stills. This quiet comes naturally and is strangely intensifying of the past action. The reader finds themselves sucked into the cyclic fears and fighting, the continual worrying over death that is such an overwhelming DAILY fact of the mirror universe. Allowing the reader to connect with this Spock and this Saavik just as powerfully as we can on this side of the mirror.

Your descriptions are utterly fascinating (pardon the use!), intense in color and highly triggering of other aspects of the ST universe, of past relievances that only need but a brushing of to instantly at depth and power to an already powerful moment. This is one of the hardest aspects of writing to actually catch and use correctly, for the writer has to resist the urge to overtell and over remind completely, daring to rely on the reader's intellect and memory to capture these enhancements. This is what I really liked about Vulcan's Heart. A surface read of the plot is good. But when you read with all the history of the ST universe slid in, the story becomes powerful and beautiful in an entirely incredible way. But only if the reader is aware of the "fine print" of the lines between lines of the past nuances of place and time and character which may only be "reminded" to the reader by a particular word, a repeated phrase. This is easy to demonstrate. Think of your sentence using just the single word "Thierrull".

So bravo, girl!

And I must absolutely applaud your characterizations here, too. You've caught our people.

Chapter 4, part 2:

This was such a fun scene to read!!

I love the male chest to chest going on here over Saavik---some over her attention and affection, some over her position of power. And what really makes this fun is that Saavik, never being one to let others do her own fighting ("I would have fought you myself!" PP), she gets right in and thumps them right back! Which, of course, only makes her all the more attractive to them by enhancing her power. And to top it off nicely, she never looses her essential femaleness. So often writers can't catch the neat balance between power and self, that a woman doesn't have to give up either to retain both.

Good balance, Grasshopper!

Chapter 4, part 3:

This was a good one.

I like the words you used throughout the part. "Muzzy" and such not only capture the feelings and state involved perfectly, but they are not the same old descriptive words typically used over and over again in fan fic. Refreshing! And something I really need to work on myself. Inherent laziness, I think!

I also like how you've got other people being stronger or the strong ones in this scene other than Saavik at times. Makes it more realistic and gives her the opportunity to be the protected one. Increasing the romance of the scene by allowing Spock to be the protector after all this time where she has been his.

Very nice.

Chapter 5, part 2:
What really just floors me is how you manage to completely and utterly present any battle, no matter how painful and dynamic, with all of its inherent fire and power and STILL manage NOT to be melodramatic.

I am in awe. And I have to sigh, cause I've GOT to work on my stuff the same.

And I really love how you've got Saavik making decisions like she really would. Simply. Utterly. The line right after when she finds out the percentage of probability of Spock getting killed if she doesn't take care of herself and fast, 'and that decided it', is perfect. Utterly profoundly altering everything and told utterly right. No hysterics, no prose and glitter, just as. And completely beautiful because of it.

And I think you're right, she'd need an aim to go. She's fought so long to live that she's on hyperdrive. But if she can take out some of his enemies while she saves his life, that's a go.

And good job at keeping an unrelenting tension even as our beloved people head straight on a slide to hell. We can't help but keep trying to rack our brains to find them a "happy ending". Or barring that, a screaming by the teeth save.

Chapter 5, part 2:
Good, good!

What really sparkles here is how you've let Spock (mirroring--forgive the use!--Saavik right now) take a real hand aggressively in what has been so long out of control. Up to this scene (and Saavik's right before), our star crossed couple have been basically trying just to respond effectively, to stay alive long enough to get their chance to really live. But now both of them are wresting control, putting all the added danger their daring and defying means on themselves so that they'll have a real chance. This will force their enemies to move faster---possibly costing them also full effectiveness, making them sloppy or impartially effective in their haste---letting them force an opening in their attackers' own defenses.

Very good turn around here. Makes the reader grin with teeth.

And superb characterization of Archernar. I like seeing Spock collide and have to work with a competeing male---especially one as intriguing as our Romulan!

Chapter 5, part 3:

This scene makes me both really sick and horrified and also immensely proud. You've caught it just right.

I DEFINITELY approve of the little additions you punched in (like her concern over her hands and why as well as more details in the beating like her arms being pulled forward to break, etc.) They don't slow the speed down at all and strangely enough, they rather speed it by enhancing the image to the reader's eye---detailing it fast but increasing its power so it has more effectiveness.

It figures that nothing is going right for our guys. And people sneer and say sci fi has no reality!!

I still laugh my head off how she uses his own phasor against him! Of all the stupid places to put a dischargeable weapon---and often we see guys actually doing it!!

I also like how you note that Kirk is nicely built--and how you immediately take the compliment that he'd preen over and slam him with how it is his attitude/overpuffed pride that kills it.

He's going to be pretty frosted when he realizes the annoying woman who's always just managed to escape his bed and destroy all his best stuff and plans just saved his ass. Of course, he'll take the credit but it'll eat him still.

Saavik might have fun with it later??

You know, they could really tease the hell out of Saavik. First she shoots a couple making out from under their own bed (that would have been an interesting few minutes before though ;) Then she admits to using sex as a seduction weapon for assassination. Then she shoots his "jewels" into crispy critters with his own weapon.

Man, if I were Kirk, the only way I'd EVER be in bed with her is if she was OUT cold. The anxiety of waking up dead or missing important body parts.

But they could tease her on her "obvious" sex issues!

Chapter 5, part 4:

Of COURSE she'd be almighty furious (especially getting stuck with Archernar and in his possession), our girl would rather die than leave Spock. And Spock would rather die than let her die. So there is, innately, a wee bit of a conflict between them over them.
Your humor in this scene is incredible! I alternate grins with worry! Archernar is true to form and just living it up with Spock.

And you about stopped my heart with the closing shot---THAT was marvelous. Even though the previous scene just tells us what happening, we get hit with the intensity AGAIN and this time through Spock's heart.

I want to bang my head on the desk though at being left right there. No matter how many times I reread the story, I still keep holding my breath and getting closer and closer to the screen and trying to figure out how they're going to survive.

Sigh.

Chapter 6, part 1:

Might I say I hate Kirk with ever increasing good cheer?? I had to laugh over the comment about his bad bedside manners. Of course---the only thing he knows how to do well involving a bed is sex!

Of course Spock would feel betrayed, he had expected Saavik to HOLD position. To trust that he could save her. But he forgot to remember that she is used to surviving alone. She responds. And she will ALWAYS act to keep him safe. Which, I think, means that his sense of betrayal is really his own realization that she thinks less of herself than he does, choosing him over herself even fatally. And as he loves her enough to die trying to save her, this realization would horrify him on a very deep level.

Besides, guilt is one of Saavik's weaknesses and if that is the only way he can force her to STAY then by hell Spock'll guilt her so bad she will only be able to sit and rock!!

And then make up later. ;)

Chapter 6, part 2:

Incredible! I think the real power in this scene is how you've got so many people slamming together---and yet you retain the uniqueness of EACH one and EACH hit and counter. It is fast and horrific, yet completely believable, the reader is swept up in the alternating grief and hope and attack and block and win and loss and fight again.

I really like the triangle in there and it is interesting how you've kept their relationship--altered as it is in the mirror--and its dynamics, this time in fear and collision. Like that one episode where the two dimension selves of a man are trapped forever in battle, equally matched and capable of destroying everything as soon as their equality is breached.

Very powerful and dynamic scene--betcha this was a nightmare to write! (if not don't tell! We're in awe here!)

Remaining:

I was thinking about the Mirror stories, I've been rereading the first and then returning to the second and back and forth again, and if you want to get a real kick in the head for power, do the same. True, each story separate is incredible in every way. Don't get me wrong. But together they create more. They complete each other and fill everything out.

I love how Kerry has taken the Mirror analogy all the way. Universes, situations, characters, struggles, everything reflects some part of each other, is its opposite or likeness. Each time you read the stories, new things move open and you get caught again.

I just wanted to toast Kerry -- for not only the brass to dare getting kicked in the teeth, but for how she blew all their damn little toes off when she did it. And did it in sheer style.

Alan:

You are amazing; it takes a lot of talent to capture a parallel universe that has barely been explored in such lurid and complete detail. Awesome work. I love the way you incorporated bits and pieces of various Star Trek books in there, most notably "The Pandora Principle". Iíve always loved that one, and have always intended to write a fic dealing with both Saavik and Jessie Korbet (yeah, a random and minor char, but fun nonetheless, I think).

I enjoyed the emotional interplay; itís very difficult to handle romance between people who donít admit to lust, let alone love unless drug there by biological imperatives that cannot be ignored, no matter what. Itís also hard to find stories out there that are romance or relationship stories that actually have a plot; and your plot was not only well developed but engrossing and detailed.

I look forward to reading more of what you have on your site.

mzsnaz:

You have so many elements of the mirror universe just nailed. I mean, the characters come alive and even with their motives and personalities twisted by the AU, they ring true somehow. SCARY!!! But, in a good way .

elise:

Oh, yes, much better! I really enjoyed it. Though I would like to see the story of your AU Amanda & Sarek expanded. Thanks!
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