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  1. Public Bookmark *

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    Zoro is 21 and wakes up in a desert they already saved, on a ship that they burned two years ago, and standing next to a man who is supposed to be dead. Except, that can’t be right, can it?

    Zoro is 19 and wakes up on a ship that’s too big, next to a robot wearing a swimsuit, and he’s supposed to fight something called a Kaido. Also, he’s missing an eye, and no one’s even a little worried about it?

    (or)

    Time travel is a shitshow, and Zoro didn't sign up for this.

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    08 Apr 2021

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    Bookmarker's Notes

    “Higher,” said Zoro, because dammit he was having fun with this. Compared to the absolute shit show he was sure Marineford was going to be? This was incredible.

    Total silence.

    “Higher…” said Chopper, staring up at him. “…. than one billion?”

    “Oh my,” said Robin, hiding a chuckle behind her hand. “He must truly be making a name for himself.”

    “Mhm,” said Zoro, thinking of…well, thinking of several things. And then, just because their expressions were only going to get better—“1.5 billion.”

    “ONE POINT—”

    “FIVE—”

    “BILLION?!”

    “How terrifying!” Brook jumped up, as Chopper and Usopp both shrieked. “To sail under such a feared captain!”

    “That’s ten times your bounty right now!” yelled Nami. “Even more than that! That’s over a billion more than his current bounty!”

    The cook was still shaking his head, looking completely flabbergasted. “You’re shitting me,” he said, pure wonder in his voice. “That rubber bastard is worth 1.5 billion. That’s…wait, isn’t that Yonko level?!”

    “I think Shanks and Big Mom and Kaido are all in the four billion range,” said Zoro, deciding not even to mention the entire Yonko deal. “And we’ve currently pissed off both Big Mom and Kaido, so—”

    “We’re fighting two Emperors?!” yelled Usopp, his eyes bulging out. “At the same time?! Are we completely crazy in the future?!”

    “We have to be,” moaned Nami, looking despondent. “I’m almost more optimistic about Marineford…”

    “It’s definitely batshit,” said Zoro. “But you should give yourselves more credit. Especially you, God Usopp. A two hundred million bounty doesn’t just happen to anyone.”

    Zoro dearly wished he had some kind of camera to capture the sheer absurdity of Usopp’s face, frozen in the same terrifying expression that knocked Sugar unconscious, and the open-mouthed insanity from everyone else. Pure, trembling, complete shock. Robin chuckled.

    --

    I absolutely cannot, this is just SO GOODDD. Everything about this is straight-up astounding—the perfect blend of angst, comedy, and craziness that is One Piece. Zoro's perspective (both of them) is spot-on, too much knowledge vs. all the misunderstandings. The slow introspective progression of the first half where both Zoros are trudging on, doing the best they can while the stakes climb higher and higher, into the second half where things pick up so quickly with all the revelations and consequences, is so, so amazing. The crew on both sides of the space-time continuum scrambling around trying to figure out what the hell is going on with Zoro while still navigating all the shenanigans that come with being a Strawhat. And then Luffy, who's always on his own wavelength that harmonizes with Zoro's in perfect understanding. And the climax, oh my god, Chapter 25, the set-up of Zoro messing with everyone chapters ago to culminate in Usopp stealing the entire show—just fucking ICONIC. I have never laughed so hard in my life. Glorious fun combined with bittersweet heartache, the writing is so easy to read and the plot is laid out so naturally. Such a wild, wonderful ride. 10/10 must read again.

  2. Public Bookmark 27

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    “I thought about using it.” Kakashi’s words cut, sharp and immediate.

    There was no need to ask if Kakashi meant for the good of Konoha or himself: guilt didn’t suit Tenzō’s features—not when Kakashi was behind them.

    “What would you have done?” Tenzō breathed.

    “In reality? Nothing. I wouldn’t have.” Kakashi’s voice lowered. He took a step forward. “But in my fantasy?”

    Tenzō had always run hotter between them, and now the heat emanating from Kakashi within his body—only a few inches away—was enough to sear.

    “I’m selfish,” Kakashi whispered. “I would have become someone you would want.”

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    01 Apr 2021

    Bookmarker's Notes

    “Was it an attack?” Tenzō asked in Kakashi’s smooth baritone. He nearly flinched at the sound. The voice was right, but the intonation was all wrong, heavy and blunt in a way that Kakashi’s never was.

    Kakashi flew through a few more seals, ones recognizable as a silencing jutsu. Tenzō felt the strange swell of his own chakra from a foreign body before the bubble burst, chakra settling undetectably in the corners and walls of the room.

    “Nope. And we’re going to have to work on how you speak.” Kakashi sighed, reaching up to scratch at the back of his neck and slouching in a way that dramatically decreased Tenzō’s natural height. “You don’t sound like me at all.”

    “You sound like me when I’m concussed and on the second dose of pain meds,” Tenzō replied starkly, crossing his arms over his chest. It pulled slightly at a tender ligament in his shoulder, an injury Tenzō had never gotten. “You don’t know how to reverse this, then?”

    “I don’t think we’ll need to; it should wear off on its own. We just have to lay low until we revert.” Kakashi knelt down to pick up the scroll Tenzō had noticed on the floor, unrolling it between fully-gloved fingers. He had donned Tenzō’s entire ANBU ensemble, from forearm guards to ninjatō.

    Even now, Kakashi couldn’t go without a mask.

    --

    The best body-swap fic I have had the pleasure of reading, that gets into the nuances of tone and cadence, body language, and mannerisms that still betray the individual. But the best part is without doubt the A++ dynamic between Tenzō and Kakashi, who've shared so much of their lives on the battlefield, who know each other so well, yet have always kept their private wants to themselves. Stellar characterization, Tenzō's careful steadiness set against Kakashi's practiced insouciance that does nothing to hide the complete respect and regard they have for each other, which I absolutely adore.

  3. Public Bookmark 10

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    The Konoha hospital is ever-familiar. Tenzo, happuri and all, is ever familiar.

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    01 Apr 2021

    Bookmarker's Notes

    Patients and various staff had begun leaving their own ailing plants in the room, trusting the unconscious man to bring them back to beautiful, flowering health, regardless of the season. Some had even been so bold as to start gathering the blossoms growing at his sides. Sakura had watched one girl, recently orphaned, reach for a flower: A rumpled, delicate statice growing on a thin stalk between the man's fingers, watched the bloom strain upwards towards her fingers ever so slightly, watched it slump with almost a sigh of relief and twist happily as she walked away with it.

    Sakura made a mental note to leave her captain's door open, though she didn't miss the dilation of Kakashi's eyes and the tightening of his shoulders. She’d never pegged her sensei as the jealous type.

    The reverence of having the mokuton user in the ward as some sort of verdant miracle despite the familiarity with wood style as simply another ninja art is something that Kakashi was sure Yamato would enjoy, a kind of attention he hardly shoulders even as he allows his delicate love of architecture to mark the homes of many. He is pretty like this, handsome among his own efflorescence, colorful and sharpened by contrast, the white of the room, the sheets, his languid throat and clammy face set against an ever-changing array of flowers of every color he could imagine. Lost in the liminal spaces of consciousness and allowing his withering chakra to fill the gaps in scenery.

    The hospital bed reminds him of a burial pall.

    The body: pale, small, weak, and, worst of all, peaceful, smothered in a sea of pity and color. Drowning in life, letting the essence of it be leached out of him for the sake of a smiling orphan and a couple potted plants.

  4. Public Bookmark *

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    All he's ever done is reach for Anakin.

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    01 Apr 2021

    Bookmarker's Notes

    “Obi-Wan!” He jerked in the stretcher, and Kix was at his side immediately, brushing Ahsoka away.

    “General, you need to stop moving—”

    “Obi-Wan, what did you do!” Blinding, white-hot pain ran up his spine, but he needed to get to him. There were too many people in the way. “Get up! Obi-Wan!”

    Ahsoka stepped in again, blocking his line of sight. She pressed a palm to his chest, trying to calm him. “Anakin, it’s okay—”

    “No,” he seethed, looking up at her. “He has to—I have to get to him. Get out of the way!”

    She glanced at Kix briefly before looking at him again. “Master, please—they’re going to medicate you if you don’t stop moving—”

    His heart was pounding so hard he barely heard her. The memory of his conversation with Obi-Wan flooded back to him. He remembered their words—about odds, about will. It could have been their last.

    He thrashed against the restraints. “Get out of the way!” he yelled at Ahsoka, harshly enough this time that she actually stumbled back in shock. Obi-Wan was still on the ground, surrounded by troopers. “Wake up! It was supposed to be me! I told you it was supposed to be me! Obi-Wan!”

    He felt a spike of pressure against his neck. Kix had a hand on his jaw, and the stretcher jerked as it began to lift upwards. His vision tunnelled immediately, whittling to a tiny point. The voice of whoever was speaking to him faded away, and the last thing he saw was a mess of rubble.

    Obi-Wan hadn’t listened to him. He never did.

  5. Public Bookmark 72

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    There is in war a constant feeling of being on the edge, he might have said.
    A desperation for solid ground. It takes you at unexpected moments, and in the precariousness, you scrabble for a handhold, a hand to hold, anything.
    Often, for Obi-Wan, Anakin is there.

     

    Anakin, Obi-Wan, & Ahsoka investigate the death of a Senator, and an accusation against the Jedi Order.
    But as the shadow of their last offensive campaign looms over them, the Jedi find it harder and harder to come to terms with what the war has made them.

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    04 Mar 2021

    Bookmarker's Notes

    “I see.” Windu is not impressed. “Is his control truly that poor? That he would harm himself and others?”

    “You don’t understand,” Obi-Wan snaps. “Anakin doesn’t feel the Force the way we do. The way that anyone else does. It is a supernova for him, where we might only see the distant flash of light.”

    “What are you trying to say, Master Obi-Wan?” Ahsoka interrupts. “You think Anakin could accidentally hurt them?”

    “If he tries to escape? Yes, I think he could.”

    He wished he didn’t know that. He wished he’d never have to consider how Anakin could be turned into a weapon, that he didn’t know of Anakin’s capacity to injure. To kill, and cause pain. He wished Anakin didn’t know it. How his precious, strong gift of the Force could be sharpened and wielded like a blade.

    But often - that bladesharp power is the only thing standing between Obi-Wan and a nasty exsanguination.

    He holds onto Anakin, no matter how deeply he cuts into Obi-Wan’s flesh. And it does. Like he’s swallowed a handful of razorblades. Sweet, bright, beautiful Anakin, so beautiful it squeezes Obi-Wan’s heart in his chest, suffocating him with a nameless and formless desire. Beauty even in his rage, in the terrible, unthinking cruelty.

    In the dust, the haze, the ruined landscape of Ul-Saan, he’d had to face it for the first time. Truly had to stare at it, right in front of him. Anakin’s potential for destruction.

    The hovering sands had blocked out the light of Cabaron’s eternally bright sun. Obi-Wan stepped gingerly among the broken mosaics, the plants ripped out by the root, the shambling carcasses of the houses.

    That bloodless determination was in Anakin’s gaze, his electric blue eyes the only thing with any color among the false dusk. “It had to be done, Obi-Wan,” he’d said, and then caught his master before he could fall.

    --

    Even now I still cannot coherently explain how deeply everything was etched into my mind, how this struck with all the beauty and force of a lightning strike to earth. There's the vivid imagery of Ul-Saan, like something straight out of Calvino's Invisible Cities, elegiac, poetic, and haunting, but most importantly, a metaphor of light and dark, ruin and desire. There's the theme of twins, of duality, permeating everything—Anakin and Obi-wan, the twin cities, the twin suns, the twin antagonists. There's the desperation and darkness of war hanging over the entire story like a specter, bleeding out of the characters like a miasma. The author writes tension and suspense with such mastery. In the beginning, everything is so subtle, the tension between Anakin and Obi-wan present but unexplained. But as everything slowly unfolds, the present overlaid with the past, you realize that both of them are teetering on the edge—of themselves, of reason—the war pushing them (and the Jedi) to the limits, tearing them open to the heart of all their deepest, darkest natures. Anakin is himself, desire outweighing all, unearthly and profane, so willing to condemn the universe for the life of one. But it is Obi-wan that is truly unforgettable. The perfect Jedi, but for Anakin, who is his fatal fracture point, where all reason falls away in the face of this one person. Something about the way he is written, the glimpse into the depth of his emotions, the tragedy of just how far he is willing to go. Something insidious and haunting. The feeling of a slow, inexorable slide into darkness. Sublime. I am utterly unable to look away.