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"It's all based on something I like to call...The Sound of Madness theory. Everyone hears that little voice in their head every now and again, don't they? That little baritone buzz in the back of your brain, the one that wants you to cause so much misery. The voice that wants you to yell, to punch, to steal...to kill. The average person would just ignore it...but all you need is one bad day...and that voice becomes your own."
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Traveller/Master

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"We're all mad here..."

Freedom Dies With Me (or Freedom Dies With Me: A Freedom Planet Alternative Timeline Story for its full title) is a Freedom Planet fanfic, written by DeviantArt user Perry Martin (MasterPerryMartin), running for 15 chapters including the prologue and epilogue. The chapters were quite long and released once every week until completion and use a good deal of the Freedom Planet cast while also using a few Original Characters. Because the Original characters in question are all Sonic the Hedgehog fan characters, it technically makes it a crossover between Freedom Planet and Sonic the Hedgehog, even if none of the established Sonic characters appear in the story at all.

The year is 2019. Planet Avalice is in complete ruin. The three major kingdoms of Shang Tu, Shang Mu and Shuigang are naught but complete piles of debris. And what remains of the once notorious Red Scarves has been reduced to glorified Freedom Fighters against an army of killers, run by a completely insane Fallen Hero known only as War Lilac. Little is known of her downfall; only that it happened 4 years previous. And then one day, amongst the death, a new traveller appears from a mysterious portal.

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Cue Master, a MasterSelf with a cursed weapon, a Hand Cannon and a lot of guilt on his mind. Thrown into this hellish wasteland, he travels to War Lilac and manages to seemingly take her down, before being approached by the Red Scarves' and told that War Lilac's downfall had something to do with Master himself. With the Blade of Hysteria by his side, Master travels back to just before the events of Freedom Planet's main story, in order to set right what he seemed to do wrong. Little does he know that someone else has followed him into this new adventure, a creature with a grudge and piercing red eyes.

Interestingly, the story had four Cawthon-esque teaser images created for it before its full release, including;

The story is available on both DeviantArt and FanFiction.net, with quite a few changes between the two. The author has stated outright that there are no plans for a sequel, though an interquel has been suggested (with the role of writer given to a close friend); this eventually surfaced as Freedom from Darkness by Doodles626, (with MasterPerryMartin being noted as a collaborator on the project), having War Lilac in the story in a semi-important role but otherwise going in its own direction. This story eventually stopped sometime around 2017, as the author wanted to distance himself from Freedom Planet.

The author himself begun work on another unrelated story titled Sonic: Forced Evolution, but eventually cancelled it due to stress and fatigue, as well as little feedback on the work itself. As of January 2017, he has now begun on rebooting his universe as a whole, complete with redesigns of both Traveller and War Lilac, as can be seen here. A story that focuses on the reboot is stated to be coming soon...which it never seemed to do. He is still active, however, posting the odd one-shot focusing on The Multiverse as a whole (using the No-Zone as a base).

According to the author's Multiverse Lists, the universe FDWM takes place in is known as FP-115.

NOTE: Due to a name change during the story's creation, bear in mind that the characters Master and Traveller are in fact one and the same. This article will refer to him as Traveller only.

This Fanfiction contains examples of the following Tropes:

  • A Day in the Limelight: Downplayed. A few chapters place an emphasis on other characters, such as Torque or Milla or even General Gong, but only for a few paragraphs at best.
  • Action Girl: Team Lilac, obviously. War Lilac even more so.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Neera Li, to an extent. Her by-the-book snarkiness is replaced by outright contempt for Lilac and Carol, with hints of sadism thrown in for good measure, making her Lawful Evil at best. Lampshaded by the author at one point;
    Author: GEE I WONDER IF THE AUTHOR OF THIS STORY HAS A DISLIKE FOR NEERA-LI I CANNOT TELL BECAUSE IT'S ALL TOO SUBTLE WHAT DO YOU THINK ADMIRAL?
    • Mayor Zao is also painted in a more villainous light by a few characters, suggesting he only remains in power through rigging the votes and removing any potential opposition. The actual text, however, remains the same about him.
    • And in a similar fashion, The Magister is seen more as a villain; at least in the manner that he outright refuses to look over Torque's evidence and just wants an excuse to go to war.
  • Adapted Out: Most of the characters introduced post-Thermal Base (such as, for example, the holo-dragon Lilac would have met later in the story) never appear since the main story deviates wildly after the events of Thermal Base itself. Most of the bosses and mini-bosses (bar the first two levels bosses) aren't even mentioned, with the exception of the fights against Syntax and Serpentine.
  • Adaptation Distillation: Subverted. A lot of the story is described in great detail, but a few late-story events (read: every part of the story after Thermal Base in Freedom Planet proper) are abandoned.
    • Brevon's Blade. The reason it bleeds green blood is that it naturally seeps the stuff after killing so many people across the galaxy. The blood has even taken on a poisonous trait, as it interferes with the healing of wounds (and in Traveller's case, has possibly become a hallucinogenic).
    • Brevon's backstory. It says he comes from the planet of Ferax, forced to kill at a young age and never stopped. Not much, but still more than what the game proposed (which, at best, veered Brevon into For the Evulz territory).
    • Milla's powers. She's a Sira, a rare being born with special powers, at the cost of her physical durability (an explanation for Milla's short health bar in Freedom Planet proper).
    • The Red Scarves' hideout. It's somewhere in Shuigang territory and acts more like a school or university, with Spade at the helm.
  • Affably Evil: Clone Master, being very boastful, hammy and jokish at first, but switches to something much more restrained and sadistic when things don't go his way. Basically, more like the real War Master.
    • Franky too is shown to be this, laughing and joking with Lilac like an old friend, despite the atrocities under his belt. The real Franky, on the other hand...
    • Blade is a subversion. While still the Hellblood God of War and very much in favour of carnage, his travels with Traveller have mellowed him out somewhat, to the point that his smarmy attitude makes him an interesting contrast to Traveller, if not his outright voice of reason.
  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: Averted; Syntax stays loyal to Brevon throughout the story, and gets destroyed by Lilac and Traveller before she can be used by the villain. However, she is hacked a few times by the cloaked figure, mainly to communicate with Brevon.
  • All There in the Manual: A lot of the facts about the characters (and on this very page, in fact) are explained in greater detail in a few of the author's pictures and short stories within his Deviant ART account (linked above).
  • An Arm and a Leg: Lilac loses her tendrils in Chapter 8, shown outright (cut off by Brevon, no less) rather than implied. She doesn't get them back, however, relying on Blade for all attacks, and War Lilac has a single stuffed tendril clipped to the back of her head (Word of God said she had two, but one fell off). A description late in the story indicates that losing them was like losing a limb to Lilac, and she vomits outright when she finds out.
    • Carol is also said to lose a few appendages by the Bad Future seen in the prologue, missing a hand and an ear. The hand gets cut off by Lilac herself during the story and a replacement is hastily cobbled together in time for the next chapter.
  • Another Side, Another Story: Most of the story takes place from Traveller's perspective, following his actions as opposed to the girls'. That said, it does switch to other characters like Carol and Milla from time to time and takes place from Lilac's POV for the most part after Chapter 9.
  • Anti-Hero: Traveller, as well as Spade. Lilac becomes one after Chapter 9, but loses the "hero" part rather quickly.
  • Armour Piercing Question: Quite a few, but one springs to mind. When Torque is kidnapped by Brevon's forces, Lilac plans to set off alone to get him back, saying she can do it. Blade's response: "How?" This causes Lilac to become silent and begin to doubt herself, until Franky appears to give her a pep talk.
  • Artistic Licence – Gun Safety: Averted! Traveller regularly unloads his Deagle and puts the safety on when needed, outright stating he doesn't want a loaded gun around someone like Milla.
  • Ascended Extra: Milla, to an extent. She didn't contribute all that much in the proper story, with most of it handled by Lilac. Here she gets a few passages to herself, a few battles are won by her, her powers are explained and her death is a major contributor to Lilac snapping. In fact, it's the tipping point.
    • Neige the Snowcat. A character by R-no71 (who designed the original Lilac before it was changed into the dragon form) who had a small cameo in Freedom Planet's fourth stage. In this story, she appears to be Spade's right-hand woman and even has a small speaking role.
    • Also Spade himself, who has a much bigger upfront role in this story.
    • The quacking duck soldier ("Weh") gets a tad more screentime, knocking Traveller out cold during Chapter 6.
  • Asskicking Equals Authority: Brevon's method of taking over the Shuigang kingdom; kill everyone within the castle, make the king a few inches shorter and torture his son to complete subservience.
    • Basically how Clone Master takes over Brevon's forces, killing the man himself.
  • Author Appeal: A lot of the references are (obviously) based off of what the author likes. This extends to the design principles of a few characters, with stitches and bandages (as well as being left-handed) being incredibly common. Looking at War Lilac's design shows this to an impressive extent.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Brevon, Neera and Prince Dail, natch.
    • War Lilac too, seeing as she leads an army by the events of the prologue.
    • Spade also, being the leader of the Red Scarves, though it is implied he loses to the cloaked figure and War Lilac manages to do him in.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Blade says outright that he has a Boomerang Mode that allows him to be thrown like, well, a boomerang. However, he tells Lilac to never bother, as it is impossible to catch him on the way back. According to Blade, Traveller learned this the hard, losing-a-few-fingers way.
    • Amelia Rosalina's powers. She's a Chronomancer, able to bend time to her will and even reverse a person's personal timeline to heal otherwise fatal injuries. Of course, most of these powers have been locked down by the No-Zone Police to prevent god knows how many paradoxes, and she has to keep them a secret to stop more unscrupulous folk from looking for and abusing her abilities. And she hasn't quite got the hang of crossing dimensions.
  • Bad Boss: Averted with Clone Master. He treats Dail with a fair bit of respect, despite what he is, and helps him come to terms with the death of his father.
  • Bad Future: The Prologue shows this. Planet Avalice in 2019 is completely ruined with no infrastructure to speak of. Just mounds of debris and green fires as far as the eye can see. Meanwhile, the Red Scarves are said to be fighting a pointless war against War Lilac, who kills whoever's in her path for little, if any reason. How it got that way is what the story tells.
  • Badass Adorable: Milla, obviously.
  • Badass Bandolier: War Master is said to wear a dark green bandoleer.
  • Badass Scarf: Traveller began wearing one after shedding the War Master persona. A very, very long red scarf that wraps around his face and chest. Ultimately subverted, however, as everyone treats it as incredibly ridiculous...at least until they see what's under it.
  • Bandaged Babe: Lilac, in the later chapters; as she never gets to the healing baths in this timeline, she hastily patches herself up with bandages and painkillers, presumably staying like that for the rest of the story. There is a small part of her thoughts where she admits she doesn't need most of the bandages she applied, but felt better with them on anyway.
  • Battle Couple: Inferred. Multiple references are made to Traveller having a girlfriend note , seemingly leading to this.
  • Battle in the Centre of the Mind: Slightly. Lilac and War Lilac duke it out for control in Chapter 12, with Lilac just barely winning.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Averted with Lilac's torture, as in the original story. The difference is that she is never brought to the healing baths, and as such remains a battered and disturbed shell of her former self throughout the second half of the story. War Lilac doesn't look much better, wearing stitched together clothing and covered in blood and scars.
  • Berserk Button: Reminding Traveller of his past in a mocking manner, as does insulting his dead sister or hurting innocents for no reason whatsoever. The latter gets passed onto Lilac, very briefly. Both Neera and Clone Master found that out the HARD way.
  • Big Bad: Lord Brevon. Also War Lilac, to a very small extent.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Several.
  • Big Damn Villains: The cloaked figure helps the team on a number of occasions, saving Lilac from more torture in Chapter 9...while also preventing her from reaching the healing baths.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: The cloaked figure. While shady and clearly playing all sides, he helps Team Lilac break out of prison and tends to help whoever he's talking to. It helped Clone Master assume control in the long run.
  • Black Cloak: The cloaked figure.
  • Blood Knight: Clone Master, unbound by regret or grief, craves chaos and bloodshed, not for "order" or "reason", but for the sheer fun of it. War Lilac even more so, seeing as she went on a four-year killing spree before the events of the prologue.
  • Body Horror: Mostly averted. Most of the mutations seen in the original game (namely Serpentine's and Milla's) flat out don't happen in this story. That said, Lilac spends the second half of the story visibly and heavily damaged; charred, bleeding, lacking her tendrils and covered in bandages.
  • Boom, Headshot!: War Lilac goes out this way.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Dail and Serpentine, as in the original story, as well as Milla by the hands of Clone Master.
  • Break the Cutie: Lilac and Milla, big time.
  • Break the Haughty: Traveller and Carol. Traveller leaves the story in a completely hopeless state note  and Carol, by the end, is a completely apathetic husk who could no longer care less.
  • Break Them by Talking: Both antagonists try this. It doesn't quite work, leading to more extreme methods.
  • Brick Joke: The Five Nights at Freddy's movie on VHS seems like an odd joke in an early part of the story. Until Clone Master reveals much later that he planted it to tell Traveller he was there, but it didn't work.
  • Butt-Monkey: Traveller gets NO respect from anyone in the story, taking offence at his name, look or scarf, and ultimately gets thrown around like a rag doll. This is mostly to make him seem vulnerable and not another overpowered OC, though the effectiveness of this is up for debate.
  • Cerberus Syndrome: The story starts out as a retread of the game's story, but Traveller's involvement only makes some parts of the story worse. And then things fly completely off the rails when Clone Master shows up.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Literally, with Traveller's Deagle. It is used to heavily wound Lilac in the later chapters, forcing her to use the Blade of Hysteria to recover and beginning her Start of Darkness. It is also used as such as early as the Prologue, being described in the opening of the chapter and not used until Traveller uses it to shoot War Lilac to the point of incapacitation near the end of it.
    • More of a Chekhov's Wound, but the stomach stab Traveller receives in the prologue. It gets worse and better over the course of the story, and finally reopens just as he's about to strike down Brevon, allowing Brevon to capture him and Lilac and torture the latter. It pretty much manages to kill him, too, if not for Amelia healing it outright.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: War Master is discussed heavily in the middle chapters. The War Master in the story is a clone, and the real one appears at the very end to help War Lilac along her path.
  • Clone Degeneration: War Master (or Clone Master as later called) is just a clone of the true War Master, but it doesn't get to him that much and he considers himself a reincarnated War Master. However, War Master's body begins to fail on him from the brunt of his powers and he says repeatedly that he doesn't have that long to live. Hence why he dabbles in the adventure at all; get War Lilac to more or less take his place when he's gone.
  • Colony Drop: Clone Master's plan with Brevon's Dreadnought; raise it just high enough and destroy the engines so it drops onto the Battle Glacier in the middle of a war and wipe everyone out. He manages to pull it off, even after death. The Kingdom Stone getting destroyed into the crash also releases all the energy in it, more or less nuking the planet outright.
  • Colour Coded Armies: Shuigang is green, Shang Mu is Red, Shang Tu is blue.
  • Convection Schmonvection: Averted. Lilac gets bogged down and begins to suffer when travelling through the lower areas of the Thermal Base, having to find a water shield to continue. Traveller, on the other hand, seems unaffected and thus plays it straight.
  • Cool Guns: Traveller's Desert Eagle.
  • Crapsack World: The Bad Future. Everything's damaged and surrounded by red winds and green fires, with roving bands of killers on the loose and very little supplies to go around.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Hysteria versus Neera.
    • Clone Master versus Brevon.
    • And War Lilac versus Clone Master.
  • Dark Fic: Turns into this.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Traveller. Also Franky. Sort of.
  • Darkest Hour: Chapter 11. Lilac is tortured, damaged and put firmly on the path of evil, Traveller and Torque are MIA, Brevon's dead via Clone Master's hands and he's taken over his troops. Carol's gone back to the Red Scarves and left Lilac to rot (which causes her problems in the very next chapter) and Shang Tu and Shang Mu are gearing up for war. After this, however, it gets worse.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Damn near everyone, but Blade and Traveller really take the sarcastic cake;
    Traveller: "Yeah, like that's gonna work! Let's just toodle on up to the madman who just stole the most powerful artefact in the known world and just ask him to return it. Pretty please?"Context 
  • Death Is Cheap: Zig-zagged. Most of this page will attest to otherwise, but it doesn't stop Traveller finally bleeding out late in the story... and Amelia from reviving him the very next chapter.
  • Death Seeker: War Lilac, as shown in her death scene - she's almost happy that someone finally manages to kill her.
  • Deconstruction: Attempted. Traveller is one to both the standard "self-insert OC" fare and the Physical God trope, having gone mad with the power and becoming an intensely bitter creature after, as well as having a violent disposition and very questionable tactics that generally revolve around killing something, and little else. Word of God has made his dislike of Parody Sue characters (as well as Traveller's origins as a self-insert himself) very clear.
    • It also deconstructs Lilac's "power hour" role in the game, as she is in WAY over her head without others to back her up and she suffers heavily for it.
  • Dented Iron: Both Traveller and Lilac. Both have clearly seen some hard knocks in their times, but both are starting to suffer for it; Lilac's resolve gets steadily weakened over the course of the story as she gains more and more injuries, while Traveller starts the story suffering and just wants to stop.
  • Demoted to Extra: Serpentine and General Gong. The former only gets to fight the protagonists once (and gets his ass kicked by Lilac), Traveller trashes his Robo-Panther off-screen, he never enters his One-Winged Angel form and is dumped in the middle of nowhere by Clone Master to be beaten up and incarcerated. General Gong, on the other hand, stops appearing outright after Chapter 6, never making a reappearance unlike in the game proper.
  • Doorstopper: Each chapter of the story is thousands of words long. If halved, one could easily double the amount of chapters. Most of the time, each chapter corresponds to a certain level in the game and the cutscenes around it, with exceptions.
  • Downer Ending: With a minuscule smattering of Bittersweet. Brevon is dead and no longer poses a threat to the galaxy, as is Clone Master, but that's it. Countless millions are dead, the planet will never recover from the crash that caused those deaths, Torque is still missing in action and War Lilac has been born, fuelled with the Kingdom Stone's energy, ready to rip the already broken world a new one.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Defied.
  • Electric Torture: Given to Lilac by Brevon, natch. Clone Master is also implied to have done so to Milla too, given her fur is described as being the same grey colour Lilac's during the last chapter.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Traveller's comes by wandering around the wastelands of the Prologue, talking with Blade, accessing information about the world, refusing to kill someone even while he was attacking him, putting War Lilac down with no other choice and going back to fix the past despite his ability to ignore it all. It demonstrates his willingness to help, his bitter nature and his attempts at redemption, even if they don't work. It also demonstrates his friendship with Blade.
    • War Lilac's is in the same chapter, introducing herself in a quiet and sly tone, and then turning to a shrieking and hysterical warmonger within seconds, hinting at her instability...
    • As well as providing foreshadowing for Clone Master's own ECM, switching from an affably evil tone to turning serious and killing Brevon within seconds, flipping back to the joyously sadistic persona soon after.
    • Both Franky and Sonar get these in their dream sequences, with Franky's painting him as being Affably Evil but helpful when needed and Sonar's showing her as much more kind, helpful and thoughtful.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Clone Master takes a very dim view on using robots to fight your cause for you and especially on torture, claiming both to be for cowards. Doesn't stop him using both when he takes control, however. He's also more partial to quick deaths than dragging them out.
    • Discussed by Lilac and Clone Master. Lilac accuses him of not being able to have Standards concerning what he has done, but he outright states otherwise. The author has gone on record to say that the clone War Master did not perform the atrocities assigned to the name, and as such doesn't feel the regret of those actions himself.
    Lilac:You're just saying you dislike certain things so you look better!
    Clone Master: They're called 'standards', Lilac dear. Even dimension killers have lines they refuse to cross...
  • Evil Costume Switch: War Lilac, out of necessity. Due to her damaged clothing and lack of resources, she's had to patch her clothes up with other clothes over the years. War Master too, as he is stated to be wearing slightly different clothes to Traveller (having a bandoleer in place of a scarf).
  • Expy: Word of God has stated that he imagines War Master and the clone seen in this story as two versions of The Joker; the former is Heath Ledger's version, while the latter is more like Mark Hamill's take on the character in the Arkham series.
    • Also, The Blade of Hysteria to the Terror Mask from the Splatterhouse remake. The author has noted this resemblance is intentional, to the point that his preferred voice actor for the weapon would be Jim Cummings, known for voicing Robotnick in Sonic Sat AM and the Terror Mask itself in the remake.
    • The concept of a Sira (what Milla is said to be) is taken from Borderlands and its Sirens. The author said outright that he took the idea straight from it.
  • Extreme Mêlée Revenge: Lilac's beatdown of Clone Master pretty much involves stabbing him in the chest an absurd number of times, refusing to stop even while breaking down.
  • Eye Scream: A few times. Neera mentions she "lost the eyes of a good man", implying the cloaked figure blinded General Gong during his escape with Torque, while Future Carol has lost an eye and wears an eyepatch, doubtless from one of War Lilac's attacks.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: Many.
    • War Lilac is shot in the stomach multiple times in the prologue and finally shot in the head in the epilogue.
    • Neera is decapitated by Hysteria.
    • Brevon has his arm cut off and his throat slit by War Master.
    • Milla is stabbed through the back by Clone Master.
    • Which Lilac pays him back for via about seventy stabs to the chest.
    • Mayor Zao is said to have perished in the Dreadnought's explosion.
  • Family-Unfriendly Violence: As with the original game. Discounting Lilac's torture, War Lilac is shot multiple times by Traveller, Carol loses a hand, Milla is tortured, brainwashed and eventually run through with Brevon's blade and Traveller himself gets stabbed in the stomach very early on.
  • Fighting Your Friend: Lilac fights Carol in a stressed rage during Chapter 12 and fights Milla against her will in Chapter 13. It is also said in passing that Franky and War Master had fought before, leading their friendship to disintegrate.
  • Fingerless Gloves: All three Masters wear these, mainly to hide the scars on their wrists. War Lilac's completely ruined gloves also give off this image.
  • Fix Fic: Sort of. Part of the story's purpose is to remove most of the plot holes and undesirable aspects of the original story, often through giving them new context given to them or having the characters react in a more suitable way. For example, the plot hole of how the group escapes the Magister's prison is by Traveller blowing a hole in the wall with C4. At least until it goes off the rails in the last third and dumps the rest of the story to focus on a new narrative.
  • Four Eyes, Zero Soul: Both War Masters, and technically Traveller too.
  • Glasgow Grin: Traveller has them, at least on one side of his mouth, with the text saying his muzzle would be split in half were it not for the stitches holding it together. War Master presumably has them too.
  • Good Is Not Soft: Traveller, though and through.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Played Straight, Inverted and Subverted;
    • Traveller is the Inversion, as he has evil scars (a Glasgow Grin and ravaged wrists), but is good, for the most part.
    • Clone Master is the subversion, as he lacks scars entirely, bar the ones on his wrists.
    • And the actual War Master plays it straight, as he is very much evil and has the same scars as Traveller.
    • Franky also inverts it, as he has two large scars on his chest. The actual Franky plays it straight, presumably.
  • Hand Cannon: Traveller's .50 AE Desert Eagle, nicknamed the Deagle (or Vergil, in the prologue). It has a two-tone finish, extended 10-round magazine, long barrel and sight rails. He uses it often, never seems to run out of ammo and takes great care of it. It actually plays a very large part in the story, wounding several characters and forcing Lilac to use the Blade of Hysteria because of Clone Master using it on her. Clone Master takes it from Traveller and keeps using it until the final chapter, where it is destroyed in the Dreadnought crash and Traveller is seen with a new one with a worn down finish and wood grips in the epilogue.
  • Helpful Hallucination: Sonar and Franky.
  • Hero of Another Story: Amelia is stated to be working on stuff behind the scenes to help Lilac out.
  • Heroic Second Wind: Several, but brief each time.
  • High-Speed Battle: Quite a few, at least in the fact that they last a paragraph at best. The author has admitted that he is not very good at writing action scenes.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Neera's repeated dismissal of Traveller leads to her underestimating him, leading to her death at his hands.
    • Brevon trusts the cloaked stranger, purely on the knowledge he can get rid of him when done with him. Not that it helped him when Clone Master came knocking on his door.
  • Humongous Mecha: Serpentine's Panther-Bot. It never sees use, as Traveller trashes it off-screen.
  • Hurting Hero: Traveller, though how heroic he is can be up for debate. That said he still misses his sister dearly and by his own admission would do anything to get her back.
    • Amelia too is said to have an empty stare and a poor grasp of empathy, due to her own backstory.
  • Hyperspace: Traveller's jacket pockets, to the point he's perfectly capable of storing a banana, an LMG belt box and an RPG-7 in them while still looking empty.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Traveller, Lilac, Milla and Clone Master...several times in his case.
  • In the Hood: The cloaked figure.
  • Infinity +1 Sword: The Blade of Hysteria. Imbues the user with a lot of power, can extend though roped-together segments, used as a hookshoot and Scorpion-esque chain, used as an ad-hoc skyhook and can cut through the fabric of reality itself, as well as a lot more. There is a cost to this, however; the use of it makes the wielder go insane in time, no matter what. Traveller uses it exclusively, but Clone Master uses it once due to a genetic loophole and forces Lilac to use it afterwards. Traveller eventually gets it back, however.
  • Infinity -1 Sword: Brevon's dagger, on the other hand, is this. His is nowhere near as special as Traveller's, but it's big and long and can outright stop you from recovering from any wound, as well as being able to cut through more or less anything. Clone Master puts it to good use after killing Brevon, as does War Lilac, who seals Milla's soul inside the blade. Infact, it's War Lilac's use of the blade that gives Traveller his troublesome stomach wound that ultimately does him in.
  • iPhony: The computer accessed in the Prologue has an image of an orange upon start up. Traveller, of course, lampshades it.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Traveller, Carol, Spade and a few more besides.
  • Karmic Death: Sadist Warlord Brevon gets his throat slashed open by Clone Master, who in turn gets his own Karmic Death via Death of a Thousand Cuts(or rather, stabs).
  • Killed Off for Real: Brevon, Milla, Syntax, Neera, Prince Dail, War Lilac and Clone Master, plus Mayor Zao and countless others in the Dreadnought crash. Amelia mentions in her journal entry near the end of the story that War Lilac managed to off Spade sometime between the end of the story and the Prologue, likely to leave Carol to lead the Red Scarves.
  • Kinetic Weapons Are Just Better: Discussed. While most of the weapons on Avalice are either spears (damaging, but easily treated) or lasers (which in theory cauterise the wounds they make), Traveller's Deagle is a standard bullet weapon of which nothing is known about. Because of this, there are no treatments for getting shot because guns like the Deagle don't exist and treatments for spear wounds aren't effective enough, making the normally humdrum, inferior weapon quite devastating in the right hands.
    • In fact, this is how Clone Master gets Lilac to first use the Blade; he shoots her point blank in the stomach with the Deagle. Because there are no procedures in place for such an injury, and because the magical healing baths were not available to Lilac, she was doomed to die a slow and agonising death unless Blade was used to heal her wounds.
  • Knight of Cerebus: Traveller and Clone Master. Both end up killing someone important to the plot, raising the stakes and making the plot much darker.
  • Last Ditch Move: War Master killing off Milla, desperate to get Lilac to snap. It works, to his amazement... and death.
  • Last of His Kind: Knuckles is mentioned as this after his tribe was wiped out by Perfect Chaos... then War Master killed him.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: Lilac's gone nuts and is killing everyone. The story is Traveller's attempt to fix this. He fails.
  • Legacy Character: Traveller, or rather Master. Beyond the use of the term itself as a name, the Master in this story took the name on after his earlier insane self "killed" the original Master's mind and took over, forming War Master and later just Master. He renames himself Traveller part-way through the story, partly to distance himself from a person he's just not and partly because people won't stop mocking him for the name.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Traveller is said to be quite fast and hit quite hard, but nowhere near as fast as Sonic. It is stated MasterSelves tend to be these by default, but Traveller less so after losing his powers.
  • Love Makes You Crazy / Love Makes You Evil: War Master became both after losing his sister. Lilac becomes both after losing Milla.
  • Meaningless Lives: A distraught and depressed Traveller mentions this in-universe in the epilogue. There are millions of Travellers and Lilacs across the multiverse, what's one less?
  • Mid-Season Upgrade: Lilac gets the Blade of Hysteria. Subverted, however, as that's a really bad thing. Clone Master, meanwhile, gets command of Brevon's army and ship, which he does little with.
  • Minecart Madness: Averted. By the time Traveller reaches that part of the second stage, Milla has already taken the minecart, so Traveller gets around the rails a different way.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Traveller has already gone through this. Lilac goes through it after cutting Carol's hand off, but it doesn't last.
  • Mythology Gag: Lilac's Dragon Boost is used a few times, used as in the game to propel herself forward at high speeds. She actually loses this ability when her tendrils are removed, but is able to replicate it once with Blade, the result sounding similar to the powered up form in her unique stage in the game.
    • Carol's nunchucks are also brought up, musing that they make her feel invincible (referencing her invincibility frames while using her special in the game).
    • Milla's powers are also used and explained, with an explanation of her lower health than Carol or Lilac (her powers make her body weak).
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Lilac killing Clone Master. He never even put up a fight. Then again, he didn't plan to.
  • Noodle Incident: A dark version where Traveller, seemingly in his War Master incarnation had barbed wire dragged across his wrists, cutting them up pretty badly. He covers the scars with his gloves, and War Lilac somehow has them as well.
    • A lot of what the true War Master did during his rampage is not told in great detail. What his clone got up to even less so.
    • The Civil War mentioned repeatedly in the story. Little is known about it apart from the fact that it was between Shang Mu and Shuigang, ended in an uneasy truce and the real War Master took part in it, killing off Milla's parents in the process.
    • Amelia's backstory, since it is poorly explained. It actually happens in an earlier story the author wrote, called Coming Home.
    • Traveller mentions an incident with another MasterSelf suffering from a Portal Cut in Chapter 1. Apparently she's just managed to stitch herself together.
  • Off with His Head!: How Brevon dealt with the King of Shuigang, as in the original story. It's also how Hysteria takes down Neera and how War Lilac kills Dail.
  • Oh, Crap!: Several times, perhaps too many to count.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Traveller, or rather Master, to the point he doesn't know his real name. There's a reason for that; the Traveller in the story is not the original Master. War Master started as a small fragment in Master's mind, representing all his hated and rage, who took over and "killed" the original Master when he snapped from the grief of seeing his sister murdered. Hence why he only goes by Master and later Traveller, as he literally doesn't know what his actual name is.
    • That said, Traveller does refer to himself as "Master T. MasterSelf, esquire" during Chapter 2, though Word of God confirms he was joking.
    • War Lilac goes through the same ordeal.
    • Franky is also only referred to by his nickname, despite his full name (Frank "Franky" Freakly) being known.
  • Origin Story: For War Lilac. Blade's origins are also briefly explained, being that he is a god sealed in a cursed dagger.
  • Physical God: The idea of the MasterSelves. Standard people born into normality, chosen by the Elder Masters (themselves Physical Gods of sorts) to create and rule their own universes. They are given incredible powers and are able to interact in their own universes without issue. Traveller himself is a half-MasterSelf, as he took his universe from someone else when they grew tired of it.
  • Power Crystal: The Kingdom Stone. The Master Emerald is also mentioned a few times in passing, while Blade is described as having a gem embedded in the handle somewhere.
  • Prehensile Hair: Lilac's tendrils.
  • Punctuated Pounding: Lilac's act of killing Clone Master is intermixed with her screaming in rage and fury.
  • Reality Ensues: Of course, the Elder Master's method of choosing anyone they deem "worthy" causes a few nutcases to seep through the cracks. One of them, Delago, helped to create War Master in the first place by killing his sister for his own amusement. The fact that War Master is referred to as a Warmonger, like a sub-class of MasterSelves, indicates that this seems to be common.
    • Lilac's overly cocky and impulsive personality, regardless of her skills to back them up, leads to her being surrounded and captured by Brevon, as in the original story. Then the stress of the torture begins to get to her and she turns quite stressed out and violent very quickly.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Clone Master's red pinprick pupils in a black eye, cribbed directly from Sonic.exe. The fact that Hysteria and War Lilac have them as well seems to indicate this is part of being a Warmonger. Oddly enough, the actual War Master has more natural pupils (as in they're oval as opposed to small dots), but they are still red and the main eye is still black, meaning the trope remains.
  • Regenerating Health: In-Universe. The Blade of Hysteria is said to have an automatic healing ability that can heal more or less everything. Predictably, it is rendered inoperable several times during the story.
  • Sanity Slippage: Lilac's mental state gets progressively worse over the course of the story, starting when Traveller first appears and speeding up after gaining Blade; to the point she leaps head-first off the slope in Chapter 13.
  • Schizo Tech: Quite a few examples. Despite the existence of lasers, spaceships and robots (that even the three kingdoms employ), the planet's inhabitants still use spears, swords and medieval armour while also using traffic lights, modern trucks and (most bizarrely) VHS tapes. Blade is, of course, baffled by this aspect.
  • Sequel Hook: Subverted. Amelia says she has plans for War Lilac, trying to redeem her in some manner, but the author has stated no straightforward sequel is planned.
  • Shout-Out: Several;
    • Sonic himself is mentioned several times, though never by name.
    • The destruction of the echidnas by Perfect Chaos from Sonic Adventure is mentioned in Blade's backstory, albeit with a few broad strokes (as in Pachacamac killed Tikal himself rather than her dying of something vague).
    • The Nocturnus Clan are referenced in the same scene.
    • The No-Zone Police are also mentioned. Traveller states he has to listen to them from time to time, while Amelia works for them.
    • Traveller's Hysteria mode is more-or-less taken directly from Alice: Madness Returns and its limit break form of the same name. Both are pure white with bleeding black eyes with red pupils, and their limbs are covered in blood. Both also only emerge in terms of extreme stress to deal with the problem at hand.
    • One of the things Traveller pulls out of his pockets is Chip's necklace from Sonic Unleashed. Also doubles as a subtle Take That!, as Traveller marvels at where it had gone despite Sonic taking and wearing it at the end of Sonic Unleashed, only for it to vanish the very next game.
    • Five Nights at Freddy's gets brought up at some point, mainly in a VHS(!) tape of the as-of-then upcoming movie.
    • "Good evening, Ladies and Gentlemen! We are tonight's entertainment!"
    • This is a message from The Order..." (The person speaking even laments he thought of the wrong game.)
    • The events of Sonic Lost World are brought up, as does the pre-Reboot Archie Comics, in Chapter 7. Both detail War Master destroying them in some manner.
    • The author's notes in Chapter 6 include a shout-out to a similar gag from The Spoony Experiment's review of Game Over. It even replicates the Admiral Ackbar gag stopping mid-phrase (this time via the code needed to show the icon stopping halfway through).
    • The Multiverse Rules gag in Chapter 6 is taken from a Running Gag from Red Dwarf, with the rule itself taken from a piece of supplemental material.
    • Chapter 3 has Franky jokingly state that Spade will go on to be part of the Battletoads. This is a double reference, as Spade's voice actor (Sean Chiplock) would indeed go on to voice Rash in Killer Instinct 2013.
    • When talking about the three kingdoms, Blade quickly voices his disappointment that the third city (Shuigang) was not named Shang Tsung, to go with the names of the other two.
  • Spot of Tea: Traveller travels around with a bag of Earl Grey teabags on his person. He lampshades it heavily, of course, by saying he sort of has to, being a United Islander (equivalent of the British in 112233C, seemingly).
  • Stuff Blowing Up: Quite a bit. Mainly in Chapter 5, where Traveller pulls an RPG-7 out of nowhere to shoot down the Armada, and the Epilogue. Especially the Epilogue.
  • Super Mode: Hysteria Mode is treated as a twisted version of this.
  • Super-Powered Evil Side: Hysteria to Traveller. A form of pure rage and power, only appearing when Traveller's rage surpasses him and he blacks out. It is controlled by what remains of War Master within him, and drains Traveller's energy every time it is used.
  • Sword and Gun: Traveller does this with Blade and the Deagle a few times.
  • Take That!: Starting from the Prologue, Blade mentions that the new world they're in is either caused by a being of immense power...or both are stuck in Spec Ops: The Line again, calling either situation "equally harrowing". The author has mentioned his dislike of Spec Ops: The Line multiple times before.
    • Boom!Sonic is referred to as "the bandaged one who can only jog at a snail's pace", mocking both the infamous bandages and his painfully slow running speeds in Rise of Lyric.
    • Clone Master reacts to Amelia's claims of him blowing up the Pre-Genesis Wave Archieverse with "no-one's going to miss it".
    • On a similar note, the No-Zone Police get similar treatment. The cloaked figure even calls them "coffee-swilling pigs".
    • The Elder Masters mentioned in Chapter 7 are mostly based on the actual members of Sega, according to the author. He mentions in the description for that chapter that most of them are insultingly incompetent because of this.
    • During Chapter 5, Traveller pulls out an RPG to take down a few airships, Blade whines that they were saving the rockets for ZOM2011, to wipe out some stupidity.
  • The Atoner: Traveller. He explains in Chapter 7 that he went crazy from losing his sister and became a horrifically bloodthirsty warlord known as War Master. He stopped after some time and felt incredibly guilty, becoming a multiverse vigilante to make up for his mistakes. This, of course, doesn't stop the remnants of War Master from popping up from time to time.
    • Franky also, as he too has a lot of horrible acts under his belt. Subverted when it is revealed the hallucination Franky is but a twisted incarnation that Traveller would rather he be like. The REAL Franky is nowhere near as repentant.
    • Averted with Sonar. Despite her official backstory with her own dark origins from her original creator, those aspects are not brought up in the story and are ignored for her characterisation. Much like Franky, this is likely from Traveller imagining Sonar how he sees her as opposed to how she really is , though the real version seen in Chapter 11 is still fairly similar to her hallucination counterpart.
    • A part of Amelia's outlook. She believes any person can atone for what they've done, no matter who they are, especially if someone like Traveller could.
    • War Lilac briefly tries this in the epilogue. Traveller doesn't buy it.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: Clone Master's plan to turn Lilac into a killer and destroy the planet manages to go through with minimal issue (besides, you know, him being dead).
  • The Cameo: A snowcat named Neige is a part of the Red Scarves, based on a character by R-no71 who had a cameo in Freedom Planet itself.
  • The Chessmaster: Clone Master. Disguising himself in a cloak, he pits the three leaders, Brevon and Team Lilac all against each other. This leaves them all confused and scattered, leading him to move in and achieve his own goals without much fuss. He even lampshades it;
    Clone Master: I'm such a rockstar! I played all you chumps like fiddles and you never questioned me. The cloak, the eyes, the teeth, the voice...no-one thought I was a bit dubious? Like, no-one at all? No wonder you all go to war on a regular basis!
  • The Dragon: Serpentine to Brevon.
  • The Southpaw: Traveller is left-handed, using Blade in it and only switching to his right when he has to wield both Blade and his gun. Lilac also uses Blade left-handed. This crosses into author appeal, as the author is also left-handed and enjoys characters that are likewise.
  • The Starscream: The cloaked figure to Lord Brevon.
  • Took a Level in Badass: War Lilac, despite all her insanity, is said to be a better fighter than Lilac herself could ever be. The fact she has the entire energy of the Kingdom Stone at her disposal might help.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: Neera. She pole-vaults the line between "snarky with a sense of duty" to "unlikeable Lawful Evil Corrupt Cop" who outright states she enjoys abusing the power she's given.
    • Carol, too. She's a lot more critical of Lilac, shows outright contempt for Traveller, cares little for Milla and her argument with Lilac in Chapter 7 turns into a violent outburst of insults, to the point she abandons Lilac for the Red Scarves and never returns. Eventually subverted, as she is still similar to her official counterpart in terms of friendliness and eventually mellows out when things get more serious.
    • Lilac's mood takes a turn for the worse after her torture, chewing out Carol and attacking her quite viciously; to the point the latter loses a hand. It doesn't last, since Carol is able to snap some sense back into her. Temporarily, at least.
  • Trauma Conga Line: Lilac. Ever since Chapter 6 she gets traumatized, burned, tortured, shot, stabbed, have bits of her cut off and forced through a mentally agonizing process. No wonder War Lilac is so...unhinged.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Everyone to the cloaked figure.
  • Villainous Breakdown: A few spring to mind;
    • Brevon completely loses his cool when Clone Master finally double-crosses him and starts rampaging around the Thermal Base, to the point that he is reduced to jabbing a laser pistol into Traveller's head and screaming death threats. His last line in the story is even a screeched, "DIE, FECCULENT VERMIN!"
    • Clone Master too has one, losing his cool as Lilac continuously manages to resist the transformation into War Lilac. In Chapter 13, after Milla is taken care of and Lilac repeats that "Heroes don't kill", he completely drops his Affably Evil facade and becomes dead serious. With extra emphasis on the "dead" part.
    • War Lilac averts it however, as she actually takes her impending death in stride, at least until she breaks down crying at the very end.
  • Walking Spoiler: Clone Master and Amelia, the former more than the latter.
  • Wham Episode: Several;
    • Chapter 2: Relatively tame, as many of the aspects of Relic Maze and the cutscenes surrounding it remain intact. However, the boss of the level is not fought and seems to have been destroyed before. This is the first of many signs that Traveller entering the new world has begun changes, even if they're not his doing.
    • Chapter 6: Traveller finally snaps and kills Neera.
    • Chapter 9: Lilac is tortured as standard, but Clone Master kicks down the door, reveals himself, kills Brevon, throws Traveller and Torque into a snowy wasteland to die and gives Lilac the Blade of Hysteria.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Torque vanishes after Chapter 11. Word of God is he returned to the Coalition of Planets to warn them of War Lilac...who shot their ships down.
    • The robots Clone Master has under his command during Chapter 9. They're not seen before and never seen again, and nothing comes from the guy taking control of Brevon's forces. Then again, with his dislike of robotic forces (and his plan in the long run), it's likely he destroyed them.
  • Who Names Their Kid "Master"?: Guess. Carol says the trope name outright when expressing her disapproval of it, while the Magister has a hard time taking General Gong seriously when he repeats the name. He changes it to Traveller... only for Mayor Zao to repeat the line (replacing "Master" for "Traveller", of course), leading to an audible groan. Ultimately subverted in that Traveller had to take the original name because he had taken the body and identity of someone else, and thus does not know what their actual name was.
    • Word of God (specifically an image showing the timeline of Traveller) shows the original called himself Master anyway, likely as a nickname.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: War Lilac; the story of how she got that way is the main plot.
  • World of Snark
  • Wound That Will Not Heal: Traveller's stomach wound, courtesy of the poison on Brevon's blade stopping the healing process and even cancelling out Blade's own version of it. It takes Amelia reversing his personal timeline to a point before he received the wound to remove it.
  • Wutai: The Three Kingdoms.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: A prevalent theme in most of the author's work, and the main reason someone like Traveller or Amelia can't just go back in time and stop the events of the story. Partly because neither know where or when Lilac snaps...and partly because the No-Zone Police follow a strict "No Paradox" rule that allows the various destinies of each universe to run its course. Any attempts to change the timeline of a universe (unless that change is part of the timeline itself) is met with quite a bit of force. Not that it stops some people from trying.
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