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04 January 2005 @ 01:01 am
Slashy Nominations 101: I Count Religion But a Childish Toy...  
...and hold there is no sin but innocence.

That's pretty much the attitude you'll be needing for this set, which is made up of stories that somehow involve religion. I have no idea how many readers of this LJ (assuming there are any after the Long Hiatus, about which more, only - later) are devout adherents of any religion, but those of you that are might, you know, want to look away from this entry. Or at least skip to the last rec, which involves the Amish Satanism Plus Goats religion. Because, while I'm sure that one is just insanely popular and all, its members probably don't have internet access and therefore won't be offended.

But the rest of you can probably count on being irked somewhere in here. Just, you know, FYI.

Important Email Note: I have learned that something was wrong with my non-fannish email address (the one with 'dsl' in it) for most of the last week. Anyone who has tried to send something to it over the past five to seven days please please resend unless you've gotten a response from me, because I've replied to the mail I've received. Also, anyone who knows what I've done to offend the email gods - because when it was just my fannish email that screwed up all the time I could believe it was the server, but now I have to accept that the problem is me - or what ritual would appease them should let me know. Via comment or, for the braver set, email. Please.

Important Website Query: Will someone please tell me what's up with trickster.org? I've been out of the loop for long enough that I don't know anything except that it has apparently gone the way of the dodo. And that it's a total bitch assembling recs sets without access to the trickster sites. Should I go into mourning or what?

Best FF That Could Probably Cause the Author to Be Stoned in Certain Highly Intolerant Times. But We're Past All That, Aren't We? His Own Soul, by sssenza. The Bible, David/Jonathan. This is NC-17. Yeah. I thought I should begin as I meant to go on in the offense department. But, look - it's canon. Don't believe me? Check out the actual text, which says "and then they had sex" so clearly - I mean, come on, Jonathan takes off his clothes and hands them to David - that it doesn't even need slashing. But the author of this piece did a lovely job elaborating on the canon, including many fetching details about who did what to whom. And she took it out of the language of the King James Version, which is a good thing, because KJV is very pretty and excellent to quote and just packed with thees and thous and untos, but it is not all that easy to read as a story. Whereas this is extremely easy to read. And fun. And good. Still, I realize that "NC-17 Bible fic" is a squick all by itself for some people, so I'm offering an alternate story for this rec. Note that I don't call it a Certified Safe Alternate, though. And for very good reason.

-Or-

Best FF That Proves That You Don't Need to Deviate from Canon to Produce a Highly Disturbing and Squicky Story, Provided You Choose Your Canon Carefully. Brotherly Love, by daegaer. The Bible, gen. Sort of. I mean, the Bible is far more explicit, in places, than this story, and the only sexual relationship mentioned herein is definitely canonical. But if you thought gen (or religion) was squick-free, my children, this will prove you wrong. I can't really warn any better than that without spoiling everything. (Those of you who like to be spoiled, though, might want to Google Amnon and Tamar.) Also, this story is one of the best short character studies I've read; it's only 500 words long, yet you don't need any familiarity with the Bible to understand the nature of Jonadab. (Which nature is, for the record, pure evil. Admittedly, he's really damn good at being evil, so good you almost have to admire it even as you're horrified by it, but that just makes the whole thing worse. Trust me.) In short: an amazing story. Bonus: if you were disturbed by the David/Jonathan story, you won't be after you've finished this, because this will show you what disturbing really is. Note: I've already recommended this story once, but it's worth rec'ing twice, and it's not like there's a ton of gen Bible FF out there.

Best FF That Shows Us That Religion Has Its Place in Oz. And That That Place Is Not a Comfortable or Happy One. Incense, by Brighid, aka mz_bstone. Oz, Christopher Keller/Tobias Beecher. We all know that Keller has some issues, yes? Religion is, canonically, one of them (and even more so after he had a vision of Hell while he was dying - one of the deaths that didn't take, for the record). Here we see what religion means to Keller and what Beecher means to Keller, and how those two things are not as separate as they might be in a totally healthy and stable person. It's another brilliant character story, with one of those joyful, fun looks at Keller's past that Oz writers love to give us. And the ending is just a killer, provided you know how the series ended; this is another short story that packs a godawful punch. Warning for the easily offended who have somehow made it this far in this recs set without spontaneously combusting: the very first line of this story features the word "Jesusfucking," and that's not exactly the only obscenity you'll find here. Or the only blasphemy. So probably best not to read this unless you're good with the blasphemy thing.

Best FF That Shows Us That When You Have New Powers, You Also Get to Commit Entirely New and Original Sins. Ten Thousand Candles, by Andraste, aka andrastewhite. X-Men, Charles Xavier/Erik Lensherr (but non-explicit - blink and you'll miss the only reference to it; to my mind this is gen). You need to have seen X2 for this to make a lick of sense. If you haven't seen it, go on to the next rec now, because the rest of this summary will take place deep in spoiler territory.

And now that they've all gone, I've got a confession to make to you: the second movie didn't work for me. There were some good parts, but overall, it didn't hang together, and one of the biggest reasons is the thing that Andraste built this story around: Xavier, as we know him in XMM canon, couldn't have survived the events of the movie. The invasion of the school was bad enough, but then there's also the tiny fact that he murdered thousands of people. Murdered. Thousands. Xavier would not be, shall we say, comfortable with that; he wouldn't be able to keep his chin up, keep a stiff upper lip, keep on keeping on after doing that, no matter what the excuse, no matter what the circumstance. But the impression I got from the movie was that he'd found himself not guilty by reason of mindfuck, and that's just - not Xavier, not for me. So I have an intense love for this story. Unbelievably intense. Scarily intense. Go thou and read, and you will love likewise.

Best FF That Proves You Can Build a Story Around Religion and Still Keep It Light and Silly and Totally Not Blasphemous. You Just Have to Find the Right Belief System. Happily Ever After, by Merry, aka merryish. Once a Thief, Mac Ramsey/Victor Mansfield. Yes, we've reached the one that's safe for everyone except Amish Satanists and fans of human (and goat) sacrifice. Yay! Now let me tell you how astonished I am to find myself recommending anything in this fandom, because I just finished watching the movie, or possibly the pilot, of this show, and - wow. Bad, folks, I'm telling you. Bad. I can't tell you not to watch it - there's a scene involving a chandelier that makes a reality out of all the "swinging from the chandelier" jokes in various FF stories, inasmuch as the two male characters spend a goodly amount of time tied to each other and rubbing against each other so vigorously that you could use the scene as a visual definition of frottage while hanging from said lighting fixture - but I can tell you that you should be good and drunk when you do. Or just skip to the Chandelier Scene. Trust me, you won't be missing much. Anyway, the Best Beloved and I had just finished watching the movie/pilot thing when I read this, so the scars were fresh. And yet I found myself reading and giggling and loving this story. So I just have to recommend it. It healed me, I'm telling you, and it will heal you, too. Well, provided whatever ailment you have isn't made worse by laughter.
 
 
 
Horehouse Lozengeswikdsushi on January 4th, 2005 01:50 am (UTC)
Regarding David and Jonathan, if you go back and read the book of Ruth, it states quite clearly that giving someone your clothing/mantle is as good as a marriage vow. Boaz spread his cloak over Ruth, which was a formal act of espousal. Given that this took place not long before David's life (Ruth was his great-grandmother), it can be assumed that the tradition held the same value.

The thing that amuses me is when people argue that, no, they didn't have sex because Jonathan was the only one to take off his clothes. (Even funnier is when they say he left on his underwear, since that wasn't mentioned. What underwear?) They seem to be neglecting the fact that Jonathan didn't then streak the military camp until he found some new ones.

Samuel I and II are two books I dearly want to read in Aramaic. Genesis is so much more powerful in Hebrew it's not funny; I can only imagine how strong David and Jonathan are in the original language.

*romps off to read canon Bible porn*
tried to eat the safe banana: OH MY GOD!thefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 04:41 am (UTC)
Ruth, it states quite clearly that giving someone your clothing/mantle is as good as a marriage vow.

Well. Thank you for telling me that, because it makes the whole thing much better, and it was already excellent.

And - OK, this is a bad thing and I freely admit it, but was I the only person who read the bit about "the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David" and thought, hey, didn't they already do that in The Sentinel?

Yeah, probably just me on that one. (And for the record, I'm well aware that the Bible predates TS by about two thousand years; it's just I read TS FF long before I'd read any part of the Bible, so, you know, I get confused sometimes.)

The thing that amuses me is when people argue that, no, they didn't have sex because Jonathan was the only one to take off his clothes.

Hee. And the underwear thing? Truly hysterical. Can anyone else say "pathetic denial born of total desperation"? Hee.

So, truly, thank you for telling me all this. I wish there was a book called The Open-Minded Person's Companion to the Bible, Including All the Dirty Details You Don't Know Because You Avoided the Religion Classes in College Because You Couldn't Face All Those Begats. That's totally what I need. But in lieu of that, apparently, I have [Bad username: wikdsushi"]. Yay!
(no subject) - zebra363 on January 4th, 2005 06:18 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 06:49 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - zebra363 on January 4th, 2005 07:19 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - (Anonymous) on January 4th, 2005 06:20 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 06:50 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - alixtii on May 2nd, 2008 01:16 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - fanofall on January 6th, 2005 07:33 pm (UTC) (Expand)
So much stronger there's hardly a place - (Anonymous) on January 23rd, 2006 12:14 am (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
tried to eat the safe banana: Wombat OTPthefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 04:44 am (UTC)
*loves*

I have braved my compuphobia and posted! I have conquered the demons of intenet fear! I am the bravest wombat that ever was!

OK, yeah, that last one was going a bit far, as I am fairly sure that every wombat ever is braver than me, but still: yay.

(And I note that you posted, too, so - welcome back to the official fandom fold! Maybe you can ask what happened in December, as I'm way too embarrassed to do so.)
(no subject) - canthlian on January 4th, 2005 06:27 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 06:51 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - marici on January 4th, 2005 07:21 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 07:58 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - milkshake_b on January 5th, 2005 06:07 am (UTC) (Expand)
jellybeans and bloodspatter: brothers <3swear_jar on January 4th, 2005 02:31 am (UTC)
Hooray recs! Glad you're back.
tried to eat the safe banana: The world is my fandomthefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 04:46 am (UTC)
Thank you! I'm glad to be back.

*eyes nifty icon*

Who are those be-hatted men in that there icon? (Unless there's just the one man, in which case: who is that man in three hats?)
(no subject) - swear_jar on January 4th, 2005 04:55 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 06:59 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - swear_jar on January 4th, 2005 10:48 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Marimarici on January 4th, 2005 03:39 am (UTC)
Good to see you back! I've missed your wonderful rec, and hope you are well and happy.
tried to eat the safe banana: Horsethefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 04:48 am (UTC)
I have truly missed being here, too. It was just hard to get started after the Hiatus had been going for a while. But I am indeed well and happy, and thrilled to see that people haven't declared me legally dead in the interim.

*sloppily embraces all of fandom and declares undying love for each individual part of it*
(no subject) - delurker on January 4th, 2005 05:18 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 05:40 am (UTC) (Expand)
torchflambeau on January 4th, 2005 03:47 am (UTC)
Trickster's gone boom, alas: you can read a little about it here.
tried to eat the safe banana: Greek to methefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 04:52 am (UTC)
Dagnabbit. I had not thought about how many people were hosted by trickster until it went pear-shaped. And trying to put together recs sets made me learn it all over again; at times, staring at my planned sets, I wondered if the whole world was behind the trickster curtain.

So many, many thanks for the link, which gave me some hope that the sites will return before I begin twitching and sobbing from FF withdrawal. Plus, it satisfied my curiosity on the topic, which was becoming unbearable. Yay Torch!
I don't know if this will help but - maygra on January 4th, 2005 05:53 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - flambeau on January 10th, 2005 01:18 am (UTC) (Expand)
plus one skeleton: Liraeldelurker on January 4th, 2005 05:17 am (UTC)
You're back!
*flings arms around thefourthvine*
*does the happy dance*

Also, I read your Yuletide story and enjoyed it. Just like a missing chapter. (The dog! I could see the dog happening!)
tried to eat the safe banana: Dogthefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 05:37 am (UTC)
The dog did happen. The dog happened to me, and in fact continues to happen to me. Except for the parts that happened to a friend of mine.

See, about four minutes after I got my assignment, I realized I had volunteered for the wrong damn fandoms. I do not so much do the happy, heart-warming, gently humorous thing, and that's pretty much Herriot's stock in trade. After approximately three weeks of solid dithering, I realized I could only fake it by writing about something I truly love - in other words, dogs. Specifically, Labrador retrievers. Luckily, my recipient had specified dogs and mischief and Christmas.

So, yeah. The dog things are all real events, and Captain is basically a male version of my own dog, Cassie.

(And I love your icon. The Disreputable Dog was one of my favorite characters anywhere ever. And I absolutely pine to visit the library of the Clayr. In fact, Abhorsen was another fandom I signed up to write. Which, in retrospect, would've also been hard. Next year I'm not volunteering for fandoms I love - I'm volunteering for fandoms with snark.)
(no subject) - brynwulf on January 4th, 2005 06:07 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 07:35 am (UTC) (Expand)
J.J.: chess (viciouswishes)jjtaylor on January 4th, 2005 06:17 am (UTC)
Xavier, as we know him in XMM canon, couldn't have survived the events of the movie. The invasion of the school was bad enough, but then there's also the tiny fact that he murdered thousands of people. Murdered. Thousands.

From the way I understood X-2, Charles almost murdered thousands of people. You're talking about the near-destruction of the human race with Cerebro, right? I thought that he was stopped before he could kill anyone - just as he was stopped before he could kill any mutants.

I still think Charles feels guilty even for that - even for causing anyone's pain. I don't think the movie gave us enough of a chance to see that, but I think Charles might actually be taking his responsibility all the way back to Jason, and telling himself he was somehow responsible for it all - for not helping Jason better or earlier, for not helping save Stryker from getting this far down into madness - I mean, I agree the movie didn't take us there, but neither did it take us in the direction of Charles feeling totally blameless.

Do you think I'm way off track here?

Also, glad you're back. Missed your posts a ton.
(Anonymous) on January 4th, 2005 06:24 am (UTC)
From the way I understood X-2, Charles almost murdered thousands of people. You're talking about the near-destruction of the human race with Cerebro, right? I thought that he was stopped before he could kill anyone - just as he was stopped before he could kill any mutants.

For what it's worth, this was my understanding, too.

Alixtii.
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 06:36 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - jjtaylor on January 4th, 2005 06:45 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - penknife on January 4th, 2005 07:03 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 09:14 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - penknife on January 4th, 2005 09:57 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - penknife on January 4th, 2005 06:51 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - jjtaylor on January 4th, 2005 06:58 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - penknife on January 4th, 2005 07:09 am (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
tried to eat the safe banana: The world is my fandomthefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 07:28 am (UTC)
Of course, if you ever want to do some recs about *Buddhism*, I can hook you up!

*prods*

Now would be good. Now would be excellent, in fact. For one thing, when the trickster sites are resurrected or reincarnated, I'm going to have a bunch more stories to rec in this theme - it hurts to have done this without even one story by kassrachel, who writes the best dang Judaic FF ever - and it would be nice to have some Buddhism-related ones, too.

In short: rec me, baby.
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 4th, 2005 01:28 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Iphiginia Saberhagenfanofall on January 4th, 2005 08:20 am (UTC)
YAY!!!! YOU'RE BACK!!!! YAY!!!!

Shall I resend to the dsl address? Or somewhere else?
And The Clocks Were Striking Thirteen: Ooo I Want That_redpanda_ on January 4th, 2005 09:15 am (UTC)
I haven't read the other comments yet. I just wanted to chip in a squeal of "David/Jonathan OTP!!1" and to curse that I have to wait to get home to read it. :)
Iphiginia Saberhagen: Cleo flying squirrel tacklefanofall on January 6th, 2005 07:34 pm (UTC)
Okay, I did like you asked and e-mailed all the e-mails that got eaten by your e-mail, but you have not e-mailed me. Is your e-mail working? Do you need me to re-e-mail your e-mail?

Heh. That was fun. :-D