FimFiction Link - Short ID: 330054/the-victor
Published: Jun '23
I hate Tirek. Well, that's not quite true; I simply don't care about him even a little bit. His S4 character is hopelessly shallow, and so trying to write him usually ends either with a story that's boring, or a story that basically creates an AU "Tirek" not resembling the original. What does that have to do with this fic? Well, The Victor's greatest strength is taking that shallow Tirek and building an interesting story centered exactly on that aspect of his personality.
The title explains the core idea of the story: What would happen if Tirek succeeded in his quest for power and destruction? "As he wanders around the world with his godlike powers, he's finally forced to consider his goals and the consequences of his actions" ...is how I could sum up the seemingly default direction for those kinds of fics. Thankfully, that doesn't happen here. Tirek knows who he is, and he understands that his ultimate victory was always going to be a hollow one. He's not bothered by the fact in the slightest. That's just how things are.
That right there is the second thing I loved about the story. The premise sounds terribly edgy, but the fic is not. In fact, the atmosphere is incredibly good. The story takes that special "lone giant at the end of the world" mood and expands on it in a great way. Tirek's characterization plays into it, of course, as his endless-but-barely-cooled hatred clashes with the captivatingly empty descriptions of the dead world and the thoroughly hopeless conversations between him and his few prisoners. He's more of a mountain than a character, living to witness the destruction he's caused and revel in his victory over his enemies. It's been a long while since I read a story that sold the end of the world as well as this short oneshot did.
Excuse the rambling, but the tl;dr is that The Victor is a fic with the best portrayal of Tirek that I've seen, wrapped in an excellent layer of top notch dark atmosphere that avoids unnecessary edge. I'd consider it an absolute must-read for anyone who enjoys Tirek fics, or well-executed dark stories in general. One of the easiest 8/10 grades that I've given.