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it's been like 10 years and i still love it. wow.
see, before you take a look at the pairing, the synopsis or even the title, there is one thing you need to know which makes or breaks this fic for you: meg, aka suppi, is freakin' hilarious. even when the subject matter grows toward deeper feelings, there is something about the way she narrates, and the way she strings her scenes together, that is absolutely engaging from the very first line. she was the queen of snarky character narration before snarky character narration became a "thing."

in icebreakers, she takes the fandom's most used crackish character interpretations (ridiculouslyoverprotective!touya, sneakytrickster!eriol, observanttsundereish!tomoyo, uberhyperactive!nakuru, among others) and spins them in a way that they're charming— you can't even complain about the OOC-ness, because it's all for Rule Of Funny, anyway.

a three-shot, the last two chapters delve more into the romance aspect, and the fic starts taking itself a little more seriously (that is in no way a bad thing, mind you). but the first chapter alone is worth this recommendation: it's given me little gems such as the special "son, if you don't go into engineering, i'm going to SHOOT you" class, people "oozing happy evil" and the size-6 rule, which have all now become part of my personal internal lexicon. even if you're not into ExT, you should give the fic a try for the sheer wittiness of the narration: sakura wants her brother and her boyfriend to get along, so she asks them to shop for her christmas gift together. tomoyo ropes eriol into "chaperoning." Hilarity Ensues.

more than anything, icebreakers is an exploration of character relationships— not only romantic entanglements, but relationships in general. characters look at each other and observe each other, to get to know the others and what makes them tick. all the characters have at least a minor appearance that does them justice. so lots of character analysis, and it's just a silly, sweet, heartwarming story that still feels like CCS and guarantees you a good time reading it. in fact, i was quite shocked today to notice that it's been almost nine/ten years since i first read this fic, yet i still find myself smiling every time i reread it. that's the best compliment i know how to give.
you can't even complain about the OOC-ness, because it's all for Rule Of Funny, anyway.

I disagree; Rule Of Funny isn't any excuse for OOC-ness if it's not deliberate and not meant to reflect on the actual characters. It doesn't help that this fic probably invented the pervasive character Flanderizations so common in the fandom, since some people can't help thinking that if the fic didn't exist, maybe the fandom's fics would have more bearable characters.

I gave Icebreakers a try, even though I really don't like the E/T phenomenon, and even plowed through the first chapter, but the writing wasn't engaging enough to make me stop thinking about how little sense it made for Eriol to be involved. And when the fic pulled out the old "Kaho left Eriol and broke his heart and that's why she's never mentioned" line of Kaho-bashing (which it might well have invented), I was out. It wasn't true to the characters or the setting.
comment #9730 Ayasugi 5th Sep 11
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