tried to eat the safe banana (thefourthvine) wrote,
tried to eat the safe banana
thefourthvine

191: Rare Beauties

I think my Yuletide glut has finally run its course. To celebrate: small fandoms!

The One That Shows Us That "Economy Sized Jackhole" Can Totally Be the Language of Love. (In Fiction. Probably You Should Not Test Drive That in Real Life.) What's the Story, Morning Glory?, by liviapenn. Psych, um. I consider this gen? I don't know. Categories are haaaard, people. But if there's a pairing, it's Burton Guster/Shawn Spencer.

So, Best Beloved has seen a season or two of Psych. I myself have not watched even an episode, and not just for my usual "television, so hard, woe is me" excuse. See, I understand that it can be lethal to people with severe embarrassment squicks. (No, really. I hear there are people who have embarrassment squicks gibbering in St. Mungo's because they were locked in a small room with Psych playing 24/7. It was apparently one of Voldemort's crueler tortures.) Often, even the fan fiction is fairly embarrassment-intensive.

But. The thing is. The Gus/Shawn pairing is so appealing and so obvious that I ship them intensively just from the tiny snippets (certified embarrassment-free) that Best Beloved had me watch. It's one of my favorite kinds of pairings: They are super good friends! Who clearly love each other! And are always there for each other! Above all others! C'mon, guys, just make out already!

So I am extremely delighted by this, which gives some gorgeous Gus and Shawn backstory that you can read either as gen or as the prelude to, you know, sex. (They already have true, true love. Canonically. Like, the kind of love where you know neither one will ever have an outside relationship that lasts longer than six months, and any relationship that does last that long will end with the other party saying, "I'm leaving because I'm sick of being a distant second to your best friend." And then, if it's Shawn, the person will add, "You asshole," and if it's Gus, the person will say, "But I really want to stay friends, okay? God, I care about you so much. I can't believe I'm breaking up with you.") I myself read it as gen but remain convinced that there is sex in this story's future, because I like to take every path there is. (This is entirely true, and let me tell you: it did not make me popular back when I played AD&D. But it did mean I was always the one with a good map.)

Either way, this is an awesome story, and has the bonus of being about these fabulous characters and not containing anything that will make my fellow blush squickers want to die.

The One with a Title So Good That I Can't Think of a Better Title for the Rec. The Underwire Job, by brown_betty (whose user name is giving me a great deal of trouble for some reason; in my Kindle, she's Brown Bewtty and Brown Better and Burn Betty) and emeraldwoman (who has no unfortunate Kindle aliases as yet). Leverage, Alec Hardison/Parker (who apparently does not have a first name, unless that is her first name, in which case she does not have a last one).

And, see, this would be one of those fandoms where I had to use the power of the internet to find out things like, oh, the characters' full names, and also, you know, what it is, exactly. (A television show! Apparently about people who, in a strange twist of events, do not fight crime! They make it instead. I guess maybe the crime-fighting field was getting overcrowded.)

I just. Okay. I love these characters. I have no idea if they're like that in the canon, but in this fan fiction, they are made of love. It's like someone asked me what I would find appealing in characters, and then made two of them. (Parker and Hardison, for the record. I am sure Elliot also brings the awesome on a regular basis, though.) I have re-read this thing maybe 15 times since it was posted, and that's solely because I want to spend lots and lots and lots of time with Parker and Hardison. I want them to get married and have geeky, antisocial babies. And then I want fan fiction about the babies. It's that bad, people.

And then. Well. There's plot, and kittens, and World of Warcraft jokes, and pushup bras, and frankly this story makes me giggle with glee just thinking about it. I cannot even tell you how much I love it.

But mostly it's the characters. I could spend my whole life with these people, I think. (Except Nate and Sophie, who frankly do not seem that interesting. Should I find them interesting? Do they have a secret sorrow? Or, better, a total lack of secret sorrows? And, oh oh oh, can either of them travel through time? The only thing this story lacks to make my joy complete is time travel.)

The One That Proves That Real Heroes Are Just as Irrationally Careless of Their Hearing When They Aren't Saving the World. (Someone Please Tell Me There Really Isn't a Ballpark That Close to an Airport.) National Pasttime, by Dira Sudis, aka dsudis. Live Free or Die Hard, John McClane/Matt Farrell.

First, let me offer my caveats. I did not see Live Free or Die Hard. I have, however, seen the original Die Hard, and based on my knowledge of that, I am guessing that in this canon there is a terrible threat against a member of John McClane's family and, you know, loads of other people. (A city? The country? The universe? Oh, oh, now I want to see Die Infinitely Harder, which would be set in SPACE, and it would feature John McClane - and Matt, why not? - versus bad guys in a SPACE STATION that they're going to take over and use to hold the whole world hostage. I like my cheese with zero gravity, moviemakers!) I am guessing there are manly grimaces and various wounds and weapons and last second saves. I am guessing someone says "Yippee ki yay, motherfucker."

I am hoping, based on the title, that this all takes place in New Hampshire, but I'm not betting on it. (Side note: if they decide to do a complete run of state motto titles, I don't want to be here for Die Hard Is Okay, although probably that would be the one where John McClane gets the therapy he so clearly needs.)

In other words, I know very little about this canon. Apparently, though, Brandon from Galaxy Quest is in it. And apparently - I find this so unspeakably odd I can hardly type the words - he has sexual chemistry with Bruce Willis. (I didn't know anyone had ever had sexual chemistry with Bruce Willis. Imagine my surprise!) Now, I have avoided learning anything else about this pairing, for the simple reason that big age differences make me vaguely geechy.

And then Dira wrote a story, and I put it on my Kindle in a moment of weakness, and I was lost. I don't even know why this pairing is so appealing, or why this story works so well for me. I just know I am now grimly trundling off to look for other stories in this fandom, even as I mutter under my breath about how I don't like large age difference pairings, and I haven't even seen the movie, and and and.

But it's hopeless. I loved this pairing and this fandom from about the thousandth word of this story. And if you read it, well, I would appreciate that. It's nice to have company in love.

The One about the Gay Superpowered Flying Alien from an Exploded Planet. No, the Other Gay Superpowered Flying Alien from an Exploded Planet. You Thought There Was Only One? Moab, by Parhelion, aka cirurussundog. Zenna Henderson's People series, OMC/OMC. (Do not run screaming into the night! That's not always a bad thing. And it's very in keeping with the universe.)

So, first, a summary of the People series, which, for a change, is a canon I do know. (Pause while I regroup from the shock.) The homeworld of an intelligent civilization of alien humanoids blows up. To the great surprise of many, they do not send earth just one scion who will grow up to have a lot of abilities and an unnatural fondness of skintight primary colors. Instead, they have a sort of diaspora. A bunch of them end up on earth, scattered in the Southwest. They, of course, have special abilities (that comes standard with the planet explosion in the civilization building kit). Sometimes they fit in; sometimes things work out. Sometimes they don't. Eventually most of them clump together and head out for somewhere better than earth (but less likely to explode than their homeworld, one hopes).

As it happens, I like this series a lot. But I love what Parhelion has done with it so very much more. Because there are gaps in Henderson's series, and what she's done - well. She's created a Person (do they get the capital letter in the singular? I have no clue) who I find more interesting and memorable than any of the characters in the original stories, and she's addressed a topic that I, frankly, find way more interesting: were there any People who were, you know, different? Unwilling to be folded into the big happy People sandwich? And, hey, maybe gay?

(Look, I'm a slasher. This can't be a surprise to anyone reading this. Or, hey, if it is? Possibly you are thinking of some other thefourthvine.)

This is one of the standout Yuletide stories of all time for me. (Not, you know, standing out in the same sense as the Carebears BDSM; that also stands out, but in a totally different way. Yuletide is large. It contains multitudes.) The style is perfect. The tone is perfect. The character is perfect. This is the People series, but better. As in, whenever I want to re-experience that universe, I will most likely turn to this story, not the originals. I can't think of anything more I can say to convince you, but oh: if you like the People series at all, read this.
Tags: [rec theme: small fandoms], die hard, leverage, people series, psych
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