Date: 19 Jul 2014 01:14 Title: Prologue
What an intense prologue. We got to see Dena's background and where she came from via a flashback scene. I found it hard to read a little when she began tearing her implants out. Ouch. She must be so confused about her memories. A good start to an engaging story, Thanks for sharing this with us. I cannot wait to see what happens next.
Date: 16 Dec 2013 14:31 Title: Prologue
Been re-reading from the start to get caught up. I'm really enjoying the descriptions of Dena's sense of duality. She keeps trying to convince herself she's still part of the Collective to avoid the horrors of assimilation. It's almost like her mind frozen in the moments leading up to assimilation before her previous life wins out over the lack of voices from the Collective.
Date: 18 Jul 2013 17:34 Title: Prologue
Free will! And determination, to be sure. Dena is rebelling against the Collective in what I feel is the best possible way - by concentrating less on herself and more on her child. If the Collective is a means of forcibly making someone stop having an ego, worrying about your child is almost the antithesis of ego. Ergo, rebellion that almost looks like acceptance, and is likely difficult for Borg programming to really shore itself up against.
Date: 06 Dec 2010 10:19 Title: Prologue
I would to say first of all before i start that i'm loving this story. Your characters are fleshed out and believeable, the plot thickens which each new chapter. When i first started reading it, i thought it might go off on a fantasy ride in relation the ship itself (a borg cube design inspired starfleet ship). But you tied it in well with the story and any questions or criticisms i had were ignored in favour of this engaging tale. I can't wait till the next chapter is published, keep up the excellent work.
As a side note, i also just signed up to the site to give you my thoughts and appreciation for your hard work.
Wow, thank you so much for this awesome comment. It really made my day. I'm so glad to know you like Tesseract, and I promise to have more for you soon. (Real-life holiday craziness is slowing me down a bit, but there's a lot left to tell. :) ) Thank you, thank you, thank you for signing up and sharing your thoughts.
Date: 28 Jul 2010 15:56 Title: Prologue
Finished with the first story and ready with the second. It's an effective portrayal of the emotional turmoil of Dena/One of Fifteen. I would guess the difference between her and Seven of Nine is that Seven was a child when assimilated.
There are many differences between Dena and Seven, which all basically do boil down to the fact that Dena has a lifetime of memories prior to her assimilation, while Seven did not. I'm glad you enjoyed the chapter; thanks for reviewing!
Date: 22 Jun 2010 04:12 Title: Prologue
Wow. Wow. Wow!
What an amazing prologue and tease for book two.
First of all, so great to have you back, I have so missed Tesseract! You've done an amazing job here, introducing us to Dena and a brand new permutation in the story. In a short space, you have made us care about this woman and her situation.
Enthralling as usual. Can't wait for Chapter 1!
Wow, thanks for the very nice review and the stars! I'm happy you care about Dena. She was once a likable person. I suspect she'll be somewhat more ... um, complex, now. But somewhere under all that tech is whatever might be left of her soul. We'll see how our friends on the Tesseract handle her ... and how she handles them. Thanks again for reading. I'm glad you're back for book two.
Date: 21 Jun 2010 11:14 Title: Prologue
What an agonizing opener! A first-hand view of an assimilated drone in the greater Collective and the horror that accompanied her capture and transformation. You manage to convey an amazing amount of emotion in a short prologue that promises more excellence to follow. I find myself almost hoping the Borg programming reasserts itself, if only to spare the woman that used to be Dena the unimaginable personal loss that would accompany any rediscovery of self.
Thanks so much for reviewing. We'll see what happens with Dena. You're right, she's got the worst of all worlds right now -- the Collective seems almost merciful compared to her reality. But it's kind of the "Matrix" question, isn't it? If everything you know is a lie, but you're happy that way, would you choose to live the truth, no matter how ugly? We'll see how it plays out for her. Thanks for reading and for the very kind comments.
Date: 20 Jun 2010 22:23 Title: Prologue
That was well worth the wait in my opinion. I loved the brilliant criss-crossing of Dena/1 of 15's past and her present. Like MirandaFave said, her attempt to rip the borg devices from her body is just horrifying. I can only think her 'pre-assimilation' self must feel like she just awoke from a long sleep only to find herself in a nightmare beyond any comprehension.
Curious, is her programming faulty? Or has she suffered from some sort of damage to her cortical array. If she's faulty, could it be the Borg programming is suffering from the old Windows 'blue screen of death'? Does this affect other Borg?
Oh the possiblities of this new development are quite rich.
Again, great great stuff. So glad to see Tesseract make its triumphant return.
Glad you found it worth the wait! Yes, I imagine 'waking up' to find yourself Borgified would be pretty horrifying ... Dena doesn't handle it all that well, certainly.
Remember, Dena was the one who had her head beat in by Lieutenant Telek in Part I. She was severely damaged. Julian Bashir did the best he could and her organic parts are good as new, but he's no Borg expert (Remember -- DS9 = 99.3% Borg free!). So she's definitely glitching, but I wouldn't automatically extend her experience to the rest of the Collective. They're not the same Collective we knew in Endgame, but they're not all like Dena, either.
I'm so happy you're happy with the return of Tesseract. Thanks so much for reviewing!
Date: 20 Jun 2010 19:23 Title: Prologue
A powerful opening showing that the effects the Borg have had on people, and surely one that makes Dena a very sympathetic figure. A great opening to a great story in waiting.
Thanks, trekfan! I'm glad you're here for book two. Thanks for the review!
Date: 20 Jun 2010 16:01 Title: Prologue
Wow. What a beginning! Book One ending with a big finish and it asked the question what was going to come next and how would Book Two open. With so many questions from the last time it would have been tempting to give us some answers. Instead, you throttle us with this dark and chilling opening.
Scary Chilling Emotional Stark
I recall one of Fifteen [here after 1/15 ] whispering Dena and the hairs on my neck were raised for some reason. Something truly horrifyign about the prospect of Assimilation - worse than death - but maybe worse still is this living hell of realising that you are trapped, confined, assimilated, part of the Collective that has destroyed your world, your life, your family.
This is a gut wrenching chapter. With 1/15 reliving her futile attempt to flee assimilation. It only gets more intensethat the perspective is that of a mother running not just for her life but that of her child. It is a very primal fear and you nail that. Tapping into that emotional thrust adds layers to this Dena stroke 1/15 character. An aside, I can only but hope that she survives this and becomes a character in this volume. There's so much potential to her! On top of which is the contrast with Dena's memories with that of the 1/15 drone self combating the emotional responses of the memories and computing them as an error. It adds to the horror of the scene.
This opener adds an emotional punch to things early on. It is a frightful and dark opener. Very ominous and sactually a clever move because it shows just what is at stake for our heroes too. Tackling the Borg as your enemy in any writing now is almost a death cue for the author. Why? Because the Borg and Assimilation feel diluted by so much over use and the inclination to go epic in using them. At the end of the day, the most frightening aspect to the Borg is their relentless nature and their fate worse than death weapon and method of conquering - assimilation.
Assimilation: what with the First Contact movie, Voyager and its numerous uses of the Borg but especially the series ending with Endgame, not to mention the number of persons now rescued from the Collective [Picard, Seven, Icheb, the various other drones in Voyager], and the massive Borg onslaught in the novels means the Borg are almost an overkill - so many clichés surround them and it seems that resistence is not so futile and their evil and horror is diluted. So to make their assimilation scary again and have a feeling of real consequence and horror is a skill.
I'm happy to report that you do that here. Full whack scary stuff. You convey the horrific horror of someone trapped within their Borg drone body and their literal desire to rip the 'Borg' out of their body. Might I add, a clever device too to show what exactly our heroes are facing and the fate that may await them or the Alpha Quadrant. Gripping stuff if I say so myself. Loved this.
Wow, what a review! I think that's almost as long as the chapter! ;-) Thanks for the thorough commentary, MF!
I'm glad you think this did a good job making the Borg scary. I agree that the concern is always that they have been overused, diluted, etc. ... but I was never quite satisfied with the stories that have been told about the Borg. I thought there were a lot of missed opportunities, and I'm trying to explore some of those here. Not everyone will want to read another Borg story, but I hope for those who take the time for this one, it'll be rewarding.
Mostly, I plan to focus on the personal when it comes to how the Collective ruins lives. The epic threat has been well covered elsewhere and we all know what they're capable of on a mass scale ... of course we'll be seeing some of that here, but largely as scene setting. What I really care about is how the Borg threat and Starfleet's subsequent handling of it has changed and will continue to change individual lives -- like Dena, Malik, Icheb, Adele, Maren ... and like you said, what's at stake if the Federation should fail to stop the Borg this time.
Thanks again for the fantastic review! :)