Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

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Leaty
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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by Leaty » Tue Jun 24, 2014 7:13 pm

Mirage_GSM wrote:And yet his actions up to this point are almost exactly the same. You even get to read his interior monologue. So I can't really see how he could have a completely different view of Hanako in one case than in the other. That's not really an option with first person narrative...
Up until Misstep-Cut Petals/Adulthood, all of Hisao's behavior can be interpreted in one of two ways. During those endings, though, Hisao's feelings about Hanako are stated much more explictly, casting all of his previous actions in that light. It's kind of like Schrödinger's Cat, actually. Once the story ends, the waveform collapses and that's how Hisao really is.

Or to put it another way; I wrote a story my freshman year of college from the point of view of a boy who'd killed his girlfriend and then stabbed her body with a pen. It was meant to be a pastiche of The Telltale Heart. It's only in the last sentence of the story that it's revealed he killed her accidentally, by eating a peanut butter sandwich before making out with her (and the "pen" he stabbed her with was epinephrine.) Without that sentence, he's a murderous monster, but with that sentence you realize he's a fucked-up kid rationalizing being responsible for his girlfriend's death.

Misstep works the same way, pretty much.

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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by Mirage_GSM » Tue Jun 24, 2014 7:26 pm

Sorry, I can't really see it that way.
Let's agree to disagree here.
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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by bhtooefr » Tue Jun 24, 2014 8:47 pm

I'll note that Hisao tends to have protective tendencies before the choice point that sends him irrevocably hurtling towards a Misstep... and the choice point that decides whether he gets Cut Petals or Continuing Melody is simply a matter of whether he trusts Lilly's judgment on what's best for Hanako.

And, it's clear that he thinks of Hanako in a romantic context as well, although it comes off really, really badly, even in Misstep - look at him suggesting a date.

But, even in the good ending, His mindset doesn't even change all that significantly, really, until Adulthood, it's just that he defers to Lilly's judgment. Look at Continuing Melody, really.

I don't think this is a case of "Good Ending Hisao has different intentions than Misstep or Cut Petals Hisao", I think it's a case of, "Good Ending Hisao managed to not fuck up for long enough that Hanako was able to calmly tell him where he fucked up, rather than hit him in the chest with the cluebat (Misstep) or decide to write off any chances of being seen as a partner (Cut Petals)".
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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by ProfAllister » Wed Jun 25, 2014 6:56 pm

Ah, bad end discussions. I've always intended to write a long detailed post on ALL the endings, but never really had a good opportunity.

I also had the idea of writing "life goes on" sequences following each of the bad ends, with the key thematic elements of "Dude, it's High School, not the end of the world" and that Hisao and the girl in question don't get back together. Given my current writing pace, I predict I'd be able to get started on that sometime in the fall of 2019.

So, anyway, excluding the good endings, here's my prognosis:

Shizune: Shizune blames herself. Hisao blames himself. Misha blames herself. We can say with reasonable certainty that the Three Musketeers won't be having a reunion tour. Shizune breaks away from Misha and Hisao for good, on the premise that she messed up badly. She'll move on, and try to find direction once again, but it's not going to be easy, and there's no guarantee that she'll ever get back on their feet. Hisao and Misha could potentially develop a relationship, either as fuck-buddies or as an actual girlfreind-boyfriend relationship. Alternately, they could drift away each other, silently endure the mutual alienation until graduation, and then move on with cordiality at best, never to seek each other out in the future. If they meet again 10 years down the line, I could see it going all sorts of ways, good or bad.

Lilly: Lilly and Hisao both feel that the other betrayed their trust, and never really loved them. Even without the distance, it's over.

Emi: They could very easily get back together and perhaps even form a stronger bond if either were willing to swallow their pride. In other words, not gonna happen.

Rin - Shards of Ire: It's disappointing, sure, but Rin will survive. It hurts, but she's been hurt before. She isn't likely to kill herself - he isn't the first to give up on her, and he probably won't be the last. And she's not likely to neglect herself to the point of death - the only reason she did that was because she trusted Hisao to make sure she didn't go too far. She isn't likely to make that mistake again. But she still has some bit of hope that she'll find "the one."

Rin - The world Only You Can See: Hoping to be understood was a foolish dream. People don't understand each other - that's just how the world works. I'm no different than anyone else. Kill myself? Because I'm not different? How does that make any sense. People say I'm good at art, so I'll continue to make art, even if no one understands it. Nomiya says that my art could make me famous. Famous people meet lots of other people. And maybe, just maybe, I'll find someone who proves you all wrong.

Hanako - Cut Petals: A child. That's all you ever were to him. All you ever will be. Of course he doesn't see you as anything more. He's never tried. Besides, who would want you when he could have Lilly? He's probably boning her already. Not like he'd tell you - you're too fragile. And you are. A waste of space, desperate to degrade yourself for even the tiniest scraps of affirmation. You're so pathetic that you make yourself sick; what makes you think anyone else would think differently? (This is the ending I find most likely to end in suicide. Smiles, cheer, then a bitter note and a body.)

Hanako - Misstep: It took an extreme step. Hanako was pushed to the edge, and the over. So she snapped, just like anyone else would. When it was all over, she cried. And cried. And cried some more. But, eventually, she realised that she wasn't crying out of sadness,a s she had so many times before. She was crying because she was happy - she was finally free. Yelling at Hisao, telling him what she really felt - it was so empowering. She didn't have to act polite, or worry about what he'd think. She spoke her mind, and he listened. Tomorrow, she'd cut her hair. something short and cute, like the other girls. Hisao probably expects her to do something drastic - maybe kill herself. But he's an idiot. Why would she kill herself? She was already dead. She's been dead since everything went down in ashes. Today is her birthday. What better day to be reborn?
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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by Leaty » Wed Jun 25, 2014 7:55 pm

You know, I'm thinking of revising my statement about BEFFs.

There is exactly one bad ending with the potential to be successfully BEFFed, and that bad ending is The Deep End.

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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by bhtooefr » Wed Jun 25, 2014 8:34 pm

...why didn't I think of that? And I even edit a fic that added an OC as Hisao was heading towards his manly picnic of doom, as the branching off point for her route.

But, it's possible that the fall actually was survivable, too (for that matter, it's not even actually stated to be a death, just almost certainly one - but if we go by, say, soap opera rules, in which they're not dead until you see the corpse, and sometimes even then they're not dead...), and depending on how he got to The Deep End, he's not necessarily a total bastard, just someone who's suffering from depression, and ended up in a bad place because of it.
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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by Mahorfeus » Wed Jun 25, 2014 10:12 pm

ProfAllister wrote:Bad end stuff.
I find myself agreeing with most of your ideas. The only one I don't really buy is (you guessed it) Hanako's two. I don't know, I just don't think she is so frail as to be on such a thin line between offing herself and going with the "fuck it all" attitude.
Leaty wrote:You know, I'm thinking of revising my statement about BEFFs.

There is exactly one bad ending with the potential to be successfully BEFFed, and that bad ending is The Deep End.
This has kinda danced in my head for some time now.

I mean, The Deep End isn't really all that fair, is it? If anything, it punishes Hisao not for being a bad person, but for being understandably depressed and socially awkward. Not to say that he wasn't holding the idiot ball, but I don't think he deserved to die for it. If anything, it exists only because of video game logic. If Hisao winds up in limbo and blows off Rin, then logically he has nowhere to go, so the player reader has to wind up somewhere.

That being said, he falls about three or four stories from the roof. Nothing to sneeze at, but the human body is surprisingly durable. Some of the fics addressing the fall seem to go with the idea that he landed on pavement, but I've always figured that a nice patch of grass is more likely. That and he was absolutely shitfaced when he fell, which can in some cases relax the body, minimizing bodily damage. Not to say he wouldn't be injured, but he wouldn't likely break every bone in his body. Granted, I gained all of my medical knowledge by watching TV.

Things could go a lot of directions from there. I do wonder whether Hisao would see it as a wake-up call, or a reason to become an even more cynical bastard.
Last edited by Mahorfeus on Wed Jun 25, 2014 11:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by brythain » Wed Jun 25, 2014 10:25 pm

Mahorfeus wrote:
ProfAllister wrote:Bad end stuff.
I find myself agreeing with most of your ideas. The only one I don't really buy is (you guessed it) Hanako's two. I don't know, I just don't think she is so frail as to be on such a thin line between offing herself and going with the "fuck it all" attitude.
Agree. I think Hanako is a lot more robust despite her outward behaviour.
Mahorfeus wrote:
Leaty wrote:You know, I'm thinking of revising my statement about BEFFs.
There is exactly one bad ending with the potential to be successfully BEFFed, and that bad ending is The Deep End.
*snip interesting ideas*
Things could go a lot of directions from there. I do wonder whether Hisao would see it as a wake-up call, or a reason to become an even more cynical bastard.
If he's still alive, and his life expectancy has not been significantly reduced further, it's a good way to get him to meet one of the many other interesting characters lurking around Yamaku...
Post-Yamaku, what happens? After The Dream is a mosaic that follows everyone to the (sometimes) bitter end.
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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by ProfAllister » Wed Jun 25, 2014 10:43 pm

Mahorfeus wrote:
ProfAllister wrote:Bad end stuff.
I find myself agreeing with most of your ideas. The only one I don't really buy is (you guessed it) Hanako's two. I don't know, I just don't think she is so frail as to be on such a thin line between offing herself and going with the "fuck it all" attitude.
I'm thinking I wasn't especially clear on time frame or what exactly I meant in my parenthetical.

For "Cut Petals," I wasn't saying Chess with Hisao on Tuesday then "I maked myself ded LOL" on Wednesday. And I'm more than willing to admit that I'm still trying to work out what exactly goes on in Hanako's head that separates "Misstep" from "Cut Petals". To the best of my understanding, "Cut Petals" is her resignation - she and Hisao will never be equals, will never be lovers, and it's probably for the best. And, based on the few glimpses we've been given into her internal thoughts, she's misanthropic, has severe trust issues, and a near nonexistent sense of self-worth. Even here, I consider suicide unlikely, but it's still far more likely than any other situation.

On the other hand, I feel rather confident in my reading of "Misstep". Well, at the very least, I think it would make for a good story. Her outburst surprised Hisao, and it's very likely she surprised herself. To assume she went into misery, depression, suicide, etc., after "Misstep" kind of plays into the "it's a trap!" mindset that gets you to "Misstep" in the first place - assuming that she is weak and fragile, unable to care for herself. And again, the underlying theme of these stories was that life goes on after the Bad End. Besides, I think there's some kind of law against having that kind of phoenix imagery available and not taking advantage of it. :p
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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by Oscar Wildecat » Wed Jun 25, 2014 11:06 pm

Leaty wrote:You know, I'm thinking of revising my statement about BEFFs.

There is exactly one bad ending with the potential to be successfully BEFFed, and that bad ending is The Deep End.
It depends on how loosely one defines a BEFF.

For continuations and epilogues, the loosest possible definition for a BEFF (in the context of KS) I can think of is "any continuation or epilogue of a girl's bad or neutral ending that unites Hisao with the girl in question." Using this definition, there actually have been some fairly successful BEFFs published. However, as one tightens up the definition of a BEFF, the probability of success drops rapidly. For example, If one restricts the definition of a BEFF to those continuations and epilogues that start immediately after the bad end in question, the chance of success drops to almost zero, IMHO.

Then, there are "alternate interpretations" and "what if" BEFFs (e.g. the fan fic that asked the question "what if Misstep gave Hisao a near fatal heart attack?"). Usually these fics can be broken down into three types:
  • Fics that try to shoehorn the Good End scenario into the Bad End. To which I have to ask? Why?
  • Fics that use the the alternate interpretation or "what if" as a springboard into a continuation. These can be a mixed bag, IMHO. It depends on the continuation part of the fic.
  • Fics whose "what if" premise actually create a new ending. (For example, instead of a Hanako Bad Ending, a Hanako Very Bad Ending.) However, these normally wouldn't be counted as Fix Fics.
I like all the girls in KS, but empathize with Hanako the most.
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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by Mirage_GSM » Thu Jun 26, 2014 2:45 am

Leaty wrote:You know, I'm thinking of revising my statement about BEFFs.

There is exactly one bad ending with the potential to be successfully BEFFed, and that bad ending is The Deep End.
It's called "Constant Companion". Read it if you haven't yet.
The Prof wrote:Rin - Shards of Ire: It's disappointing, sure, but Rin will survive. It hurts, but she's been hurt before. She isn't likely to kill herself - he isn't the first to give up on her, and he probably won't be the last. And she's not likely to neglect herself to the point of death - the only reason she did that was because she trusted Hisao to make sure she didn't go too far. She isn't likely to make that mistake again. But she still has some bit of hope that she'll find "the one."
I always wondered why the VN ends after Shards of Ire. To me there is no reason why it shouldn't proceed to the good end like it did after Illusions for People. It's probably the biggest single gripe I have with Rin's path except for all those needless choices throughout (and those don't really affect the story one way or the other if you're not writing a walkthrough or betatesting the route, trying to find every line to check the path for spelling, grammar and consistency^^°) and the smoking thing.
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by Mahorfeus » Thu Jun 26, 2014 7:28 pm

ProfAllister wrote:For "Cut Petals," I wasn't saying Chess with Hisao on Tuesday then "I maked myself ded LOL" on Wednesday. And I'm more than willing to admit that I'm still trying to work out what exactly goes on in Hanako's head that separates "Misstep" from "Cut Petals". To the best of my understanding, "Cut Petals" is her resignation - she and Hisao will never be equals, will never be lovers, and it's probably for the best. And, based on the few glimpses we've been given into her internal thoughts, she's misanthropic, has severe trust issues, and a near nonexistent sense of self-worth. Even here, I consider suicide unlikely, but it's still far more likely than any other situation.
Well, only two things I can think of directly influenced Hanako - Hisao's invitation to the city, and her subsequent meeting with Othello. Evidently, Othello's vote of confidence in regards to Hisao and Lilly meant something to Hanako. Maybe it was enough to make her second guess her misgivings about the two of them? I think it would be a little silly if it were that simple, but it seems to be the case. Having lasted as long as she already had with gods know how many disappointments, I think she'd be more like your proposal for Rin - maybe one day she would find somebody who acknowledges her as their equal.
On the other hand, I feel rather confident in my reading of "Misstep". Well, at the very least, I think it would make for a good story. Her outburst surprised Hisao, and it's very likely she surprised herself. To assume she went into misery, depression, suicide, etc., after "Misstep" kind of plays into the "it's a trap!" mindset that gets you to "Misstep" in the first place - assuming that she is weak and fragile, unable to care for herself. And again, the underlying theme of these stories was that life goes on after the Bad End. Besides, I think there's some kind of law against having that kind of phoenix imagery available and not taking advantage of it. :p
My problem with Hanako is that in spite of her inner strength, she only says what matters when she is absolutely pushed to the brink. It was always within her power to change the dynamic of her relationship with Hisao and Lilly. Lilly always had faith that Hanako was a strong person, and at the very least, Hisao did not treat her the way he did because he thought she was broken. I think they would have listened if she had spoken. And I think that maybe, after thinking on it for a while and calming down, Hanako would realize that as well.

That's why I've never found the idea of her reconciling with Hisao something that would make her any weaker of a character. She isn't crawling back to him and admitting that she was wrong. She set her foot down, established her boundaries, and spoke her mind. Perhaps she didn't mean everything she said, but she sent a clear message nonetheless. Perhaps then she would realize that she can renegotiate the terms of her relationship with Hisao and Lilly, so to speak. She can still become a phoenix, but she doesn't have to burn down her bridges in the process.
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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by Oscar Wildecat » Thu Jun 26, 2014 8:28 pm

Mahorfeus wrote:That's why I've never found the idea of her reconciling with Hisao something that would make her any weaker of a character. She isn't crawling back to him and admitting that she was wrong. She set her foot down, established her boundaries, and spoke her mind. Perhaps she didn't mean everything she said, but she sent a clear message nonetheless. Perhaps then she would realize that she can renegotiate the terms of her relationship with Hisao and Lilly, so to speak. She can still become a phoenix, but she doesn't have to burn down her bridges in the process.
I think it would be important for Hanako's development as a person to renegotiate a possible relationship with Hisao and Lilly -- provided she didn't back down on the essential message that they needed to stop hurting her with their over-protectiveness. If she just walked away from Hisao and Lilly after Misstep, I believe that there would always be a part of her that feels like she ran away, and in doing so, confirm that, yes, she is an irredeemably broken person. However, if she approached them with a second chance, it would put to rest these internal doubts. (Note, there is nothing in this that implies that, Hanako couldn't walk away again -- this time with a clear conscience -- if Hisao and Lilly continue to behave as before.)
I like all the girls in KS, but empathize with Hanako the most.
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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by NekoDude » Fri Jun 27, 2014 4:42 pm

bhtooefr wrote:...why didn't I think of that? And I even edit a fic that added an OC as Hisao was heading towards his manly picnic of doom, as the branching off point for her route.

But, it's possible that the fall actually was survivable, too (for that matter, it's not even actually stated to be a death, just almost certainly one - but if we go by, say, soap opera rules, in which they're not dead until you see the corpse, and sometimes even then they're not dead...), and depending on how he got to The Deep End, he's not necessarily a total bastard, just someone who's suffering from depression, and ended up in a bad place because of it.
It seems to me the fall is survivable for someone who is drunk and does not have a congenital heart problem. In his particular case, survival would require that someone react immediately (possible, there is a festival going on) and know what to do (also possible, who knows what visitors are on site). Even for a person who started healthy, this is likely to cause an extended stay in the hospital and probably some permanent damage like lifelong back problems. We're not talking about a parkour expert tucking and rolling the landing here, as someone like that might well be able to get up and walk away. (In fact, my character in the in-progress VN does exactly this when she falls from the roof of a three-story building, though she does turn an ankle on the landing.)

Still, as bhtooefr mentioned, I branch my storyline off a would-be manly picnic, deviating only because Hisao meets my OC coming down the stairs as he's headed up.
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Re: Limits of Fanfiction - What is appropriate?

Post by Eurobeatjester » Sat Jun 28, 2014 12:26 pm

Nothing really to contribute to the suicide discussion, except that I think the fact there are so many interpretations on what happens in the bad ends (all of them plausible to some extent) is a testament to the strength of the storylines in KS.

Regarding BEFFs: I do think they can be salvaged, but I'm in agreement with another poster that I don't think they can be done well if they were continuations instead of timeskips. The bad endings come about as a result of bad decisions made by character flaws on behalf of one or both parties (although it leans heavily on Hisao since he's a PoV character), and we never really see past those endings to see how they change the people involved. It's not something that happens overnight because the wounds are far too raw, and can take years of stepping back and working on each other. All that's left is how we and the other characters feel at that exact moment: Anger, disgust, betrayal, etc.

In my own life, I've experienced some things that are very similar to the various bad ends in KS. Some people involved I've repaired my friendships with and they are my closest friends to this day. But it took years to get to that point, and before that even started, we needed the time away from each other to grow as people - the amount of time needed just for that phase will be much longer than the time remaining at Yamaku, especially if you still see/interact with the person every day.

Can the good memories, with time, be enough to overcome the hurt that happened and try to salvage a friendship? No two people will give you the same answer.

I've had 2 Hanako's in my life. One I'm great friends with, even if we decided a relationship wasn't for us. The other? Ten years later, to this day, she refuses to have anything to do with me. Looking back, we both screwed up, and while we've both grown as people, all we'll have is our memories, both good and bad.
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