Like many of you, The Hill of Swords by Gabriel Blessing has been on my reading list for a while. I'm not familiar with the ZnT novels but I'm very familiar with the ZnT anime and Fate/Stay Night as well as the Nasuverse in general. However what caught my attention the most about THoS was Louise's character development. Prior to reading THoS, Louise was one of my most-hated anime characters, and even afterwards I still don't like her very much. However the version presented in THoS has grown past the sadistic and immature tsunbitch that she was in canon and turned into something worthy of respect. The potential for character growth was always there, Saito just wasn't the right person to bring it out (or maybe he was and he didn't bring out nearly enough of it) I'd like to try this myself, however I don't have the patience for writing servile characters like Shirou was in THoS. My personal feelings on Louise would probably wind up coming out one way or another and then the story would just degrade into a bashfic. Instead, I'd like to try making a deconstruction (or is it reconstruction?) of a bashfic by using a character who won't put up with Louise's shit but also won't immediately ditch her for one reason or another, and in the course of butting heads with her familiar ("Call me that again and I'll teach you what that riding crop feels like!") Louise is forced to confront her flaws and work past them, adapting to the familiar rather than the familiar adapting to her like Saito did. The first candidate I'd thought of was a post-Heaven's Feel Tohsaka Rin, who sure as hell isn't going to put up with being treated like a servant but also is smart enough not to go off half-cocked and start blowing shit up. She has no resources and no knowledge of the world outside Tristain Academy, so she sticks close to her so-called "master" while needling her every chance she gets, sucking up to Guiche (he makes the loveliest gemstones with his earth magic you see, and Tohsaka magi adore their gems...), and so on and so forth. And of course the fact that she's canonically bisexual makes it that much easier to get Rin her own harem. The main problem with Rin is that she's quite possibly too intelligent for me to write believably without extensive analysis of the situation and all possible choices available to her. Thoughts/opinions/alternate character suggestions?