When Life Gives You Lemons by Baked The Author
What if Taylor Hebert triggered as a Tinker and then cobbled together a teleportation device that brought her to Aperture Science? What if GlaDOS and the other cores were more sane?
What do you get?
This is mostly a story about Taylor working her way through abandoned Old Aperture (Act 1), continuing to do so while interacting with the Aperture Science cast via radio (Act 2), and then staying alive in the face of a cleanly incorporated crisis and antagonist (Act 3).
However, it also constructs an alternate universe that is at once familiar, yet coherent, with details like Caroline being just as much a monster as Cave Johnson and GlaDOS actually originating as a digital upload of one of their department heads, a woman named Gladys Emerson.
It’s also got a nice sense of humour that’s very fitting for a Portal story, with segments like this:
but there were a few other useful pieces of trash lying around, along with a box of 15 Aperture Science Blueberry Granola Bars (“Tastes like real blueberries! Will never go bad, or else!”)
…as well as various other fun things that I’ll leave you to discover, because the setup is a little too long to be comfortably quoted.
A very satisfying “read it for the characters” story with some nice world-building… just don’t go into this expecting Taylor to meet them face-to-face or contact to be re-established with Earth Bet until the last couple of chapters.
At least 4.7 out of 5.
P.S. Look forward to seeing how, in this case, the cake is not a lie.