->''"Being perfect or having something that is perfect are things people often strive for, but they are things that are impossible to reach. Not only is it difficult to define, but frankly, [[TitleDrop perfection is overrated]]. You never have to improve yourself, struggle against your weaknesses, or learn how to understand yourself or the ones you love."''
-->-- '''Shizuru Fujino'''

A ''MaiHime'' fic by Theralion ([[ThemeNaming also known as]] {{Tropers/Valiona}} on TV Tropes) that, starting from midway through the show and diverging from canon, seeks to explore how MarySue characters would fare without favoritism from their authors.

A group of [=SUEs=] (Superpowered Unbalancing Entities), representing Mary Sue archetypes and having powers symbolic of Mary Sues’ effect on the plot, arrives at Fuuka Academy, intending to defeat all the Himes so that they can reshape the world as they see fit. Naturally, it falls on the Himes to stop them, but to do so, they must look past their differences in order to work together, and also come to terms with their own issues and personal flaws.

The fic can be found [[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/8530650/1/Perfection-is-Overrated here]]. The story has been completed.

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!!This work provides examples of:

* ArcVillain
** Chapter 1-4: Hitomi
** Chapter 6-7: Toki
** Chapter 8-10: Shizune
** Chapter 14-15: Sekai
** Chapter 17-19: [[spoiler:Bachiko and Meiko, as well as Ishigami and Nagi]]
* BigBadEnsemble: The Usurper and the Obsidian Lord. In the Chapter 17-19 arc, [[spoiler:Ishigami, Nagi and the Bachiko and Meiko pair]]
* BigDamnHeroes: [[spoiler:Yukino saves Mai from Shiho, knocking Shiho out and enabling Yuuichi to survive]]
* BiggerBad: [[spoiler:The author himself, by virtue of creating the Usurper and the [=SUEs=].]]
* BittersweetEnding: [[spoiler:The Himes are victorious, but saddened by the deaths of the [=SUEs=], and the realization that they are, from a certain point of view, pitiful. Their lives go back to normal, but challenges await them, now and in the future]].
* BloodierAndGorier: Compared to MaiHime, the characters often die in more gruesome ways than just being disintegrated, partly the results of the [=SUEs=] aiming to kill their victims instead of just destroying the Childs.
* BoisterousWeakling: Haruka's status as this is commented upon by Yukino, who admires her in comparison to Shizuru because of her determination against the odds. Interestingly enough, in the epilogue, [[spoiler:Yukino realizes that Shizuru had weaknesses of her own, while Haruka comes to recognize Yukino's inner strength]]
* BondingOverMissingParents: Mai and Nao, to an extent, after Mai encounters Nao in the hospital and learns about her comatose mother, although what helps them understand each other and themselves is the ''differences'' between them.
* BreatherEpisode: Chapters 11-13 take a break from the action for the characters to reflect on some of the challenges they have faced and will face in the future, and write in diaries about their CharacterDevelopment.
* ButNowIMustGo: [[spoiler:The Otomes are told that they are only allowed to help the Himes against Sekai. The Avatar and Mashiro leave after the end of the conflict]]
* TheCameo: Kyouji Takamura, protagonist of MaiHime: Tree of Destiny, dies as Mariko’s Most Important Person. Arika appears as Akira’s new roommate in the last chapter.
* CharacterDevelopment: The Himes pause to reflect on how much they've changed midway through the fic, and at the end, look back on how much they have changed.
* ChekhovsGun:
** Midori tells the Himes to write in diaries in case their personalities or memories are altered. [[spoiler:When Bachiko and Meiko arrive, Mai's diary provides an indication that she never knew either of them]].
** [[spoiler:Natsuki’s pistol, which she uses against Shizune, is put aside in case she needs it again, and is used again in an attempt to kill the author.]]
* ConflictKiller: The [=SUEs=], upon appearing, derail Ishigami’s plan to manipulate the Himes into fighting one another, and provide an enemy for them to unite against.
* CrossOver: [[spoiler:With MaiOtome, caused by Sekai stealing an Otome's powers and fleeing to the Himes' world, causing the Otomes to pursue her there and help the Himes thwart her plan to attack the academy]]
* CurbStompBattle: [[spoiler:Shizuru]] vs. Hitomi ends fairly quickly, with the new arrival launching a surprise attack on her opponent’s Child, defeating her.
* DeathByAdaptation: [[spoiler:Yukariko, Ishigami, Nagi. The former two]] died in canon, but in this case, they stayed dead.
* DeconstructionFic: Is one for Mary Sues, showing that they are unable to survive without preferential treatment by the author, and would realistically be perceived as amoral.
* {{Deuteragonist}}: Natsuki, with Nao as a tritagonist and Mai as the protagonist.
* DieForOurShip: [[InvokedTrope Invoked]] when [[spoiler:Bachiko and Meiko try for Mai/Mikoto, Yuuichi/Shiho and Natsuki/Nao, and so derail Yuuichi and Shizuru to enable this]].
* DysfunctionJunction: The Himes have their own issues from canon, which they are forced to confront by the end, but the [=SUEs=] are even further removed from what would be considered normal, to the point at which working together is impossible.
* EarnYourHappyEnding: The heroes, in the end, reject "easier" solutions and choose to secure happiness through their own efforts.
* EvenEvilHasLovedOnes: Mai ponders this while passing by the pillars, which also rise whenever a SUE is defeated. A [[spoiler:First District]] minion has a wife and son who work at and attend the school.
* EvenEvilHasStandards: None of the [=SUEs=] would be willing to tolerate Hitomi simply because of how terrible her actions are.
* EvilCounterpart: The [=SUEs=] possess powers similar in nature to the Himes, but the types of abilities they have are often very different.
* EvilVersusEvil: The [=SUEs=] are not only in conflict with the Himes, but have mutually exclusive agendas with the canon antagonists and each other.
* TheFinalTemptation: Mai, Natsuki and Nao, in order to stop Toki, are told that they must ensure that history remains unchaged- and the events in question are the tragedies that made them the people they are. Later on, [[spoiler:Natsuki gets trapped inside Yukariko’s LotusEaterMachine, and has an experience in which her parents are still alive and living with her, while she has also met all her friends at Fuuka Academy.]]
* FiveBadBand: One emerges toward the end.
** BigBad: The Obsidian Lord [[spoiler:while possessed by the Usurper]]
** TheDragon:[[spoiler:Mikoto]]
** TheEvilGenius: Nagi
** TheBrute: Suzuka
** TheDarkChick: Makoto
* ForWantOfANail:
** The main plot kicks off with Midori calling Mai to tell her about the discovery of someone (who turns out to be Hitomi) mind controlling people just as they find out that Nao supposedly attacked Yukariko. They delay going after Nao, and eventually rule her out as a culprit, preventing much of the fighting between the Himes.
** When [[spoiler:Shiho]] attacks Mai, [[spoiler:Yukino]], who has her Child when she had lost it by this point in canon, intervenes, saving her [[spoiler:and Yuuichi]]
* GambitPileup: Chapter 17-19. [[spoiler:Bachiko and Meiko try to force certain people to fall in love or, failing that, kill the Himes. Ishigami decides he can use them and decides to try to use Yukariko to coerce the Himes into fighting one another. Meanwhile, Nagi, trying to advance his own agenda, tries to manipulate Shiho, who is unconvinced that Yuuichi has truly fallen for her, into killing Mai]].
* TheGhost: Hayate. Nothing about this character is revealed apart from Hayate's name and status as someone dearest to Toki.
* GottaKillEmAll: The [=SUEs=] are charged with defeating all the Himes.
* GuiltFreeExterminationWar: Averted on the Himes’ end. Shizuru regrets having to kill [[spoiler:Hitomi]], and Natsuki feels similarly about killing [[spoiler:Shizune]]. By the end of the story, Mai considers the [=SUEs=] pitiful individuals, and while she realizes that they have brought harm to others, she is upset over having had to fight them with no peaceful resolution. On the other hand, the [=SUEs=] are willing to kill all the Himes if it comes to that.
* GunsAreUseless: [[ZigZaggingTrope Zig-zagged]]. Natsuki says that ordinary firearms are, for the most part, useless against the Himes, [[spoiler:but it’s subverted when she kills Shizune with a handgun]]. [[spoiler:And double-subverted when Natsuki’s gun fails to kill the Avatar]]
* GutPunch
** Chapter 4: Hitomi, having gotten her first taste of using Mind Control to make her victims kill other people and themselves, uses her powers to cause a massacre at a diner, resulting in the deaths of 20 innocent people, and showcasing that the [=SUEs=]' mutual (if varying) lack of regard for human life.
** Chapter 18 and 19: While previous SUE attacks had interfered with the canon villains' plans, [[spoiler:Bachiko and Meiko's]] plan provides [[spoiler:Ishigami and Nagi]] the opportunities they need to put their own plans into motion; the former results in [[spoiler:his and Yukariko's deaths]], while the latter results in [[spoiler:Shiho and Mai being forced to fight like in canon, with Yukino barely managing to defuse the situation by arriving before Mikoto and knocking out Shiho]].
** Chapter 21: [[spoiler:The Obsidian Lord, possessed by the Usurper, kills off the entire First District and destroys Miyu, the latter action sealing off the possibility of pushing the ResetButton and undoing any of the deaths.]]
* HijackedByGanon: [[spoiler:Double subverted. It initially appears that the Obsidian Lord will be the final villain, but he turns out to be possessed by the Usurper. Near the end of the final battle, the Obsidian Lord forces the Usurper from his body and reclaims his position as main villain.]]
* HumansAreFlawed: A main theme of the story is that because people have to struggle to overcome their own weaknesses, they are stronger than the [=SUEs=], who have never tried to do any such thing.
* InSpiteOfANail
** [[spoiler: Sister Yukariko dies alongside Ishigami, although this time, Natsuki and Nao fill Mai and Yuuichi’s roles in that scene]]
** The First District gets destroyed, [[spoiler:by the Usurper-possessed Obsidian Lord, Mikoto, Nagi, and the [=SUEs=] Makoto and Suzuka]].
* ItNeverGetsAnyEasier: The Himes find this out when they have to kill the [=SUEs=]. [[spoiler:Mai is disturbed when Mikoto has no apparent reaction to killing Bachiko and Meiko, although it turns out that Mikoto was brainwashed]].
* ItSucksToBeTheChosenOne: Midori regrets having to send Mai, Natsuki and Nao to act as TimePolice, ensuring that the most painful experiences in their lives happen.
* KarmaHoudini: [[spoiler:The author, due to being literally unkillable, never answers for his role in creating the [=SUEs=]. ]]
* KilledOffForReal: The people who die stay dead.
* KnowWhenToFoldEm: The heroes are forced to retreat from [[spoiler:their first encounter with Shizune, due to her AntiMagic abilities]].
* LighterAndSofter: The Himes do not end up fighting or killing one another [[spoiler:except for Chapter 19]], and there are fewer sympathetic character deaths. On the other hand, the people who die stay dead.
* MarySueHunter: The Himes become this.
* MinorCrimeRevealsMajorPlot: Hitomi's using MindControl to rob people's bank accounts -> plan to eliminate the Himes and TakeOverTheWorld.
* MyGodWhatHaveIDone: Tatsuya, upon seeing that Hitomi has mind controlled him into raping and murdering his wife.
* NecessaryFail: Takumi nearly drowning, Natsuki's mother being killed, and the robbery that killed Nao's father and put her mother into her coma are seen as not only necessary to uphold the integrity of the timeline, but having had their own positive and negative impacts on Mai, Natsuki and Nao, respectively.
* NoChallengeEqualsNoSatisfaction: Yukino makes the point that because the Himes have faced and overcome adversity, becoming stronger as a result, they are more likely to win than the [=SUEs=] are. This trope is also why Hitomi gets bored with robbing her victims.
* OfficialCouple: [[spoiler:Akane/Kazuya, Takumi/Akira, Mai/Yuuichi, Shizuru/Natsuki]].
* OutOfCharacter: [[spoiler:Bachiko’s victims, especially Nao (who becomes very formal and polite towards others, particularly by using honorifics), behave in such a manner]].
* OutsideContextVillain: The [=SUEs=]
* ParodySue: The antagonists consist of these.
* PragmaticVillainy: The Usurper doesn't like Hitomi killing indiscriminately, as he feels it draws too much attention to her. WordOfGod reveals that none of the other [=SUEs=] would be willing to team up with Hitomi, partly out of a sense of self preservation and partly because [[EvenEvilHasStandards they consider what she is doing unacceptable]].
* PrecisionFStrike
-->'''Nao''': You’re [[DontYouDarePityMe fucking sorry]]?
** Mai uses profanity less often, but gets this example.
-->'''Mai''': "[[ShutUpHannibal To hell with your new world that is only perfect for you! We'll decide our own future!]]"
* RapeIsASpecialKindOfEvil: The common application of this in fanfics is deconstructed with Hitomi. She doesn’t know or care why rape is wrong, but knows that it is a terrible crime, so she mind controls a man into raping and murdering his wife, then allowing him to see it before forcing him to kill himself.
* RealityEnsues: Handguns are less powerful than some of the Himes' powers, but they are still strong enough to kill someone. [[spoiler:Shizune finds this out the hard way]].
* RevengeBeforeReason: Natsuki, after mentioning the RevengeByProxy trope, responds to Mai’s suggestion that the idea of someone taking revenge on someone like Takumi by attacking her doesn’t seem very logical by saying that people seeking revenge do not always follow logic. She then is forced to think about how that might apply to her.
* RevengeByProxy: Natsuki once wonders if Mai is falling victim to this. [[spoiler:The truth is that Shiho is directly attacking the target of her revenge]].
* SacrificialLamb: [[spoiler:Kyoko, who dies as a result of Shizune’s death]]
* SealedWithAKiss: [[spoiler:Shizuru and Natsuki’s]] last scene in the fic ends with them kissing.
* ShutUpHannibal: Several cases, such as when Mai rejects the Usurper’s plan for a new world, and Yukariko denounces Shizune as a false Christian.
* ShutUpKirk: Shizune delivers one to Yukariko when she accuses her of going against Jesus’s teachings, saying that Yukariko is a false Christian as a Catholic.
* SlidingScaleofIdealismVersusCynicism: Somewhat on the idealistic side. The world is often harsh and never can be perfect, but it's indicated that people can change for the better, and perhaps so can the world.
* SmugSuper: The [=SUEs=], to various extent, are overconfident in their powers. As such, [[spoiler:they are vulnerable to Shizune's power in "A Common Enemy Without A Common Cause", as it is more effective the more people rely on powers. And then Shizune is gunned down by two nameless police officers, indicating the limits of her own abilities]].
* SortingAlgorithmOfEvil: Played with. The [=SUEs=] vary in terms of how strong they are, how much damage their plans would cause and how much of a threat they are to the Himes, but most of the encounters get more difficult over time.
* TakeThat:
** The entire fic is one against MarySue characters by virtue of deconstructing who they really are
** Mai gets one against certain shippers when confronting [[spoiler:Bachiko and Meiko]], denouncing the act of changing people’s personalities so they get together with the right people.
** [[AllGirlsWantBadBoys Makoto’s superficial attraction to Nagi]] and belief that [[LoveRedeems he’ll change]] is also a reference to the DracoInLeatherPants trope.
* TeethClenchedTeamwork: Nao is initially unwilling to help the other Himes, only cooperating because [[EvenEvilHasStandards she finds Hitomi's deeds intolerable]]. Some of the other Himes wonder if she attacked Yukariko, and she is only on good terms with Mikoto [[CharacterDevelopment at]] [[FireForgedFriends first]].
* TemptingFate: Immediately after Shizuru says one more incident will force the school to close, [[spoiler:Sekai's forces attack the school]].
* TheStationsOfTheCanon: There are several canon events that take place, such as Takumi getting an operation in America, but they often turn out quite differently; [[spoiler:for example, Takumi lives in this version]].
* TimePolice: Mai, Natsuki and Nao, in Chapter 7.
* UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans: In addition to the Obsidian Lord, the Usurper’s plan is this.
* VillainEpisode: Two omakes focus on the [=SUEs=]. One provides a look at their point of view on the conflict, and another shows what would have happened if they had been forced to work together.
* VillainsActHeroesReact: Natsuki expresses frustration at one point over being forced to react to SUE attacks time and again. [[spoiler:Within minutes, the next SUE's forces attack]].
* WhamEpisode:
** Chapter 6. The true nature of the [=SUE=] threat is revealed, and the Himes are forced to go back in time to prevent history from being rewritten.
** Chapter 18. [[spoiler:It is revealed that not only is Bachiko a SUE, but so is Meiko. Yukariko betrays the group and puts Natsuki into a LotusEaterMachine. Shiho reveals herself as Mai’s attacker and tries to kill her, with Mikoto on the way.]]
** Chapter 21. [[spoiler:The First District is destroyed, as is Miyu, and it is revealed that the Obsidian Lord is in league with the [=SUEs=] and is possessed by the Usurper]].
* WhamLine
** Chapter 7
-->'''Yukino''': "There's a fourth time portal!"
** Chapter 18, when Mai decides to ask Meiko some questions about Bachiko.
-->Meiko's expression suddenly darkened, as a feeling of dread overwhelmed her.
-->[[spoiler:They had been found out]].
** Chapter 18, again when Mai comes face to face with the girl who has been attacking her all this time
-->'''Mai''': "I should have known it was you... [[spoiler:Shiho-chan]]."
** Chapter 22
-->'''The Obsidian Lord''': "[[spoiler:That is incorrect; you are speaking to the Usurper]]."
** Chapter 24
-->'''The Advisor''': "You have not only [[spoiler:triumphed over the rules of the Hime Carnival itself, slain its mastermind and managed to do so with most of you still alive]]... but you have also [[spoiler:defeated several of my most powerful creations]]."
* WhatMeasureIsAMook: Discussed by the author. [[spoiler:The First District]] minions who were killed [[spoiler:by the Usurper-possessed Obsidian Lord and his entourage]] are suggested to not necessarily be bad people, but it is pointed out that they have done morally questionable things. Their deaths are considered a consequence of those deeds, but it's left open to interpretation whether it is a fair consequence.
* WorldOfCardboardSpeech: At a few points. Natsuki gets one, when telling Shizuru of her life experience, and that [[spoiler:she loves her, saying that she doesn’t care about what other people think about her relationship with the person who helped her trust others again.]]. The Himes get ones of their own during the final confrontation. In which they talk about what they have learned over the course of their CharacterDevelopment.
* YouGottaHaveBlueHair: The [=SUEs=] often, but not always, have improbable hair colors. In a deleted scene, Midori considers looking out for people with hair colors that aren't normal for Japan, before realizing that most of the cast already has such colors.
* YouHaveFailedMe: It is stated that any SUE who loses her powers will be killed by the next one to step up. [[spoiler:Toki is one such example]].
* YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness: Hitomi typically does this with her victims when she's done using them to murder people.
* YouOweMe: Midori gets Youko to excuse Yukino from class by calling in a favor.

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