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YMMV / Mysteries Of The Heart

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  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Loads
    • Is Zaros really the benevolent god Bryce and Azzanadra think he is or is he putting on an act and playing them?
    • Did Zaros tell the truth about not liking his power to compel loyalty and he only used it on Ariane despite not liking it to prevent her from potentially giving his secrets to his enemies or did he lie and he actually likes using that power?
      • If the latter's true, it means he lied to us in Fate of the Gods when he said he couldn't lie while he was inside us, what else has he lied about?
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    • Does he have an ulterior motive for wanting to become an Elder god?
    • Just how much of a hero is Bryce?
    • Does Bryce really believe that Zaros did what he had to do by mind controlling Ariane and mutilating her in the process, despite not wanting to or does he suspect him of lying?
  • Continuity Porn: Lots, due to the author's attention to detail. There's several callbacks to previous quests, like NPCS mentioned once or twice in Heart of Stone (yes Pablo Corvusa, I mean you), the tasks you ran around Gielinor doing, as well as Video Game Cruelty Potential from some of the older quests (as seen with the mention of the widow from the Branches of Darkmeyer), and even names and backstories from a semiobscure Lores and Histories from a few years ago and scenes from a prequel oneshot.
    • The sheer level of detail and nods to canon can occasionally be detrimental and over-descriptive—and there's plenty of Scenery Porn as well.
      • However, if you haven't read and remembered all of them, you're bound to get...
  • Continuity Lockout
  • Designated Hero: At worst, this is what Bryce is.
  • Ho Yay: Between Azzanadra and Bryce in Revelations. Azzanadra praises Bryce for his faith in Zaros, and Bryce blushes in response.
  • Iron Woobie: Azzanadra in Revelations. He spent years defending the Empire after the fall of Zaros with no success, before he was taken captive and sealed in a pyramid, for centuries. He's conscious the whole time and goes mad. He got better after Bryce freed him and he did manage to make contact with Zaros. In the present time period, he does not let what happened in his past get in the way of searching for the Elder Halls, the place where the Elder gods (except Mah) are sleeping in.
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  • Jerkass Woobie: Bryce, if he's not the designated hero.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Zaros in a nutshell.
    • Bryce tries to be one by concealing his shadier deeds from Ariane and putting on a heroic act for her. She buys it.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Ariane gets her tongue pulled out. Her new one is made out of a shard from Zaros' body. Keeping in mind that just by having Zaros near you, you're being exposed to his ability to enforce loyalty. Ariane has a part of him in her at all times, ensuring that she won't betray him.
  • Overshadowed by Controversy: Nothing too controversial in the story itself, but these days, this story (and anything else Nerd's written for the Runescape fandom) is better known for being associated with the most notorious right-wing troll of the Runescape lore community than anything else.
    • Nerd was outed to be an alt account that belonged to King Aegon I, the most famous troll of the lore community, who started out as Ax-Crazy for Zaros before he turned into a far-right, Trump fellatiating nutjob. Afterwards, he was blacklisted from the community by everybody, even those who'd been his closest friends. The fallout was so bad, Nerd hasn't written a Runescape story since then. These days, he seems to have quit the game, he mostly spends his days tweeting in support of the far-right. Even his Deviant ART, once filled with Runescape fan art, is starting to turn away from Runescape to focus on pro-alt right content.
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  • Squick: A subtle one in Secrets when Zaros said Bryce's romantic feelings for Ariane reminded him of his own for his companion. The only companion he ever had, and could possibly be referring to is Seren, his sister.
  • The Woobie: Ariane. She grew up in Seers' Village with her grandmother, who spent her money on Ariane's tuition at the Wizards' Tower so she could make her dream of mastering every kind of magic a reality, only to be expelled because the Saradominist headmaster thought she made a deal with a demon for power. Just when she thinks her dream is dead, she receives news her grandmother's gotten sicker and there's no money to afford medicine or a doctor, causing her to reach her lowest point. Things get better when Xenia shows her that she could train magic by adventuring as opposed to in school, but then Xenia finds out about the Elder gods, how they're here in Gielinor, and will wake up to destroy the whole planet if they ever wake up, out of desperation, Xenia formulates a plan to stop them from awakening, which would result in magic being removed from the world. Knowing how important magic is, Ariane had no choice but to kill the one who snapped her out of depression, and she's overcome with guilt afterwards.
    • That's all before she finds out what Bryce is hiding from her, and before she goes to Freneskae, and falls under Zaros' mind control. The mind control involves Zaros ripping out her tongue and giving her a new one from a shard he pulled from his own body. Zaros' power works when he's in the presence of others, the new tongue will always be inside her, meaning she will stay loyal to him.
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