Everything You May Not Necessarily Have Known about Vision of

...But Aren't Afraid to Find Out.

(Katchan's review of 'Rain', a _Vision of Escaflowne_ fanfic by Natalie
Baan, firecat@gti.net)

     A piece of prose written entirely in the first person, consisting
almost wholly of internal monologue, containing paragraphs of detailed
description filled with lots of adjectives - - sounds like slush in the
making, right?

     Not so 'Rain'.

     Not by a long shot.

     'Rain', a _Vision of Escaflowne_ piece written by Natalie Baan is all that and a side order of fresh, crispy fries.  I discovered 'Rain' while browsing rec.arts.anime.creative, despairing ever finding a gem among all the [Ranma] and [SM] and [UY] entries.  The [Esca] tag caught my attention; the story made me catch my breath.

     Yes, 'Rain' is written in the first person -- a difficult voice to write.  Many authors get caught in the quagmire of Self when writing in first person, dropping 'I' and 'me' between every other word.  Natalie escapes this trap by creating a first person focused as tightly on the
character's surroundings as on the actual character.

     Yes, 'Rain' is written almost completely as an internal monologue-- again, difficult to write without becoming maudlin, without rambling in a Shakespearean tragic manner.  But just as Human thought will, the main character's thoughts shift; distractions, descriptions, and remembrances all serve to keep the reader fascinated, moving along through the character's thoughts as swiftly and easily as through one's own.

     Yes, 'Rain' contains descriptive paragraphs.  Description is so very often overdone, but Natalie's use of adjective strings to evoke the vision of the main character as various landmarks sweep into sight creates a world and then sucks the colour out of it as swiftly as the syrup is gone from a slushie, leaving nothing but tasteless white ice --and how perfect for the setting of this piece!

     'Rain' is not light-hearted fare.  The main character is not cheerful -- for good reason, we see -- and there is no happy ending.  There is, however, a great, huge, neon-lights-in-the- closet spoiler in 'Rain'; so if you have not seen the entire run of Vision of Escaflowne, be forewarned.

    'Rain' was a delightful start to an otherwise dreary day for me; finding it truly made my day, and I hope reading it will have the same impact on all of you.

     'Rain' and Natalie's other stories can be found at
http://www.gti.net/firecat/fanfics.   You can contact Natalie at firecat@gti.net.

Read Natalie's RAIN Fanfic