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07 January 2005 @ 09:21 am
Slashy Nominations 103: I Wonder What Fool It Was That First Invented Kissing  
Don't like the title? I do, but I can see how you might think it's a bit off-message for a recommendations set celebrating kissing. But I had a hideous time thinking of anything to put up there, and even after I resorted to searching, everything I found had, well, unfortunate overtones. I seriously considered "like kissing God," even though that was about drug addiction. I also flirted with "with eyes that saw not, I kissed her," (I'd have changed the "her" to "him," of course), but, well, if you know that one, you'll see why I refrained; I love the first part of that one, but the last bit makes me alternately recoil and hiss. (I freely admit that this may be an idiosyncratic reaction.) Plus, you know, the girl he's kissing is his daughter, which, in this context - ew.

So instead I went with sarcasm about kissing. It had a certain appeal.

Best FF That Shows Us That There Are Bad Habits, and Then There Are Very, Very Good Ones. Unplanned, by Beth H., aka bethbethbeth. Due South, Ray Kowalski/Benton Fraser. For some reason, stories that don't use kissing as just a quick stop on the road to hot kinky sex seem to be more common in big fandoms. I think maybe in small fandoms there's too much tension; the writers are thinking, shit, if I don't get them fucking, who will? Whereas in larger fandoms people can have a certain confidence that if they don't get to the 69-while-hanging-from-a-chandelier* part, someone else will. This story doesn't get to the inverted oral sex, but I think you'll agree that it doesn't need to. I've loved this for a long time, had it in the recs database for a long time, but watching the canon made it so much better. Because the thing is, lots of times the guys looked like they were about to do this, like this is exactly what would happen if they forgot themselves for a second. They acted like a couple, so much so that there were scenes that seemed to end just before Ray and Fraser casually, coolly, and calmly stuck their tongues in each other's mouths. (And, yes, I will eventually stop trying to make everyone watch the dS canon. But those of you who have been here for a while may remember the SN Siege, when I had Obsessive-Compulsive SN Recommending Disorder for a month. This may be like that. Just warning y'all.)

Best FF That Will Make You Clutch Your Gum and Your Porn to Your Bosom, So Be Careful; No One Likes Sticky Porn. Things to Get Arrested For in Singapore, by shrift. Sports Night, Dan Rydell/Casey McCall. Choosing this one was tough; SN has so many excellent kissing stories. But in the end, I had to go with this one, because it's just so Danny to do this; he's one of the very few people, real or imaginary, who can be annoying and adorable at the same time. (Mind you, dogs do this effortlessly pretty much all the time. It's only people who usually can't manage it.) Shrift sees this. She gets this. Which is why I love her dearly even though I cannot look at her name without wanting to re-read The Phantom Tollbooth. Or it's one of the reasons, anyway; there are many reasons to love Shrift, just as there are many reasons to love this story. (Yes, fine, I know that was a lame transition. If you can think of something better, let me know.) I love the structure of this story, how you go through the day following this recurring theme (or, hey, trope). It feels almost like an episode, with lots of snappy, funny dialog and a surprisingly touching conclusion. Plus there's random information about Singapore. How could I not love it? I couldn't. And you should join me in this love.

Best FF That Demonstrates the Deleterious Effect Confessions of Cannibalistic Urges Can Have on Your Sleeping Arrangements, So You Wannabe Cannibals Should Think Before You Speak. Or Not. Definitely Not If You're Sharing My Bed. Kryptonite, by mimesere. Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Oz "I've Forgotten His Real First Name Again" Osbourne/Xander "I Do Remember His But I Never Can Bring Myself to Use It" Harris. I have a weakness for Oz, that lycanthropic sayer of the strangest right things in the fewest possible words. But the thing that makes me love him makes him hard to write. (I suspect that the canon writers took him out of the show so that they wouldn't have to think so hard all the time.) Which means that a story like this one, where Oz sounds like Oz - I will go a long way for such a story. I will read Oz/Buffy for that. (I'd even consider Oz/Dawn, although I'd have to punish myself for Bad Bad Thoughts afterward.) Which makes it all the more wonderful that I didn't have to go anywhere unfortunate for "Kryptonite" - this is one of my favorite BtVS pairings, right here. I think we can all rejoice about Oz/Xander sex. And we can be happy about the length of this story, too; it's surprisingly long for an "only a kiss" piece. Note, particularly, the last segment - look at how much Mimesere manages to convey in such a short and seemingly trivial piece of writing, how much she manages to suggest without showing a thing. That is perfect, folks, a perfect ending, and not an easy thing to write. Be amazed.

Best Slash FF Featuring Entirely Chaste Behavior on the Part of All Participants. Or As Chaste As These Guys Ever Get. Nesting Place, by destina. Master and Commander, Stephen Maturin/Jack Aubrey. This is very non-explicit, and what I like about it is how well it illustrates a certain thing about the M&C books. Because, OK, there's one part of one sentence in this story that Patrick O'Brian would never have written (at least as far as we know, although, let's face it, we don't know much about the guy - he could've been writing all manner of Age of Sail gay sex scenes in the privacy of his home, and, god, I'd love to live in a universe where he did); if you take that itty bitty part out, this whole thing, including the kiss, could've come directly from the books. Jack and Stephen are that close. Which makes the books so slashy they almost transcend slashiness. Reading them, I generally get the feeling the O'Brian was just being reticent and polite and eliding the sex parts. (Which, yes, I'm sure would mortify the guy if he was still alive. I'm reporting how I feel, not what I think, OK?) But I'm more with the nosy and the details and the smut, so I like Destina's approach, which is writing like O'Brian minus the gallant, respectful courtesy.

-Footnote-

* Is it wrong that I can see - well, no, but hear - this happening?

"I can't take this much longer. All the blood's rushing to my head."
"Whine whine whine. You think I'm happy? I got the world's worst wedgie, here."
"So cut the fucking cord already."
"Yeah, right. You like toast? You wanna be toast? 'Cause that's what'll happen if we fall."
"Jesus. Just - feeling really light-headed, here. Can't you die like this?"
"I'm not dying with my face two inches from some jackass's crotch, thanks." [thoughtful pause] "Huh. So, you really uncomfortable down there?"
"I told you, I'm dying -" [zzzzzzt] "What - oh. Oh. Oh Jesus God."
"Mmmm."
"Yes. Yes. Yes - oh no you shit don't you fucking dare stop."
"So. More comfy now? A little less blood pooling in your head?"
"No! I'm not more comfortable! Go back to what you were doing!"
"Maybe I would if you put that mouth to some use besides </i>whining</i>."
[pause]
"Yeah, sure, OK." [zzzzt] "Mmmmm."

And I refuse to say what fandom that was in on the grounds that it may - no, would - incriminate me. It wasn't any of the ones recommended above, though; I'll tell you that for free. Now allow me to slink off in shame for even thinking, let alone actually transcribing, this.
 
 
 
Vanilla  ... Spiked with Slivovitzjenna_thorn on January 7th, 2005 09:33 am (UTC)
Oz's first name
happens to be Daniel.

Just because my mind happens to hold on to trivia like that.
tried to eat the safe banana: Brainsthefourthvine on January 7th, 2005 09:54 am (UTC)
Re: Oz's first name
Thank you! I knew it was something like that, but I was frankly at a loss for what, and if I'd guessed, it would've been David, which would have been wrong, obviously.

Daniel Daniel Daniel Daniel. I can remember this. I can.

And I can remember it without thinking about Stargate, because the last think I need is to associate those two fandoms. Once you've formed an association, it's a short step to imagininga crossover. Next thing you know, you're writing a crossover epic, and from there you're within spitting distance of insanity.

Daniel Daniel Daniel Daniel. Daniel "Oz" Osbourne. Right. OK. Thank you.
Vanilla  ... Spiked with Slivovitzjenna_thorn on January 7th, 2005 10:11 am (UTC)
crossovers
Now wait a minute, I thought it was Mary Sue's that were the launching point into jackets that fasten strangely. Drat. I've been going about this all wrong.

I can see Oz in pretty much any fandom. Really.
Re: crossovers - thefourthvine on January 7th, 2005 01:14 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: crossovers - jenna_thorn on January 7th, 2005 01:26 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: crossovers - thefourthvine on January 7th, 2005 09:52 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: crossovers - jenna_thorn on January 8th, 2005 08:46 am (UTC) (Expand)
Bastet: hero (sleepy)sweetvalleyslut on January 7th, 2005 09:51 am (UTC)
Hee. I don't know if you've watched Once a Thief yet, but that scene is, like, straight from the movie. Minus the fucking.
tried to eat the safe banana: Stylethefourthvine on January 7th, 2005 09:55 am (UTC)
I did in fact watch the movie-pilot-thing recently, and that was in fact written for Once a Thief. Yeah. But I didn't admit it, or use any names, so we can all pretend otherwise, right?
What the hell is up with the mummy?!: a little bit deadlyserialkarma on January 7th, 2005 10:24 am (UTC)
I should be embarrassed about the fact that I've never seen the canon to that and have only read, like, two crossovers EVER with that fandom and yet, I had a feeling it was Once a Thief as well.

Shouldn't I?
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 7th, 2005 11:32 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - serialkarma on January 7th, 2005 11:37 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 7th, 2005 12:46 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - serialkarma on January 7th, 2005 01:31 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 7th, 2005 01:17 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 8th, 2005 05:08 am (UTC) (Expand)
Bastetsweetvalleyslut on January 7th, 2005 10:29 am (UTC)
Aw, but it was funny!

OaT is definitely a fandom of shame.
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 7th, 2005 12:40 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - sweetvalleyslut on January 7th, 2005 01:31 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 8th, 2005 05:09 am (UTC) (Expand)
semiellipticalsemielliptical on January 7th, 2005 11:03 am (UTC)
Reading them, I generally get the feeling the O'Brian was just being reticent and polite and eliding the sex parts. (Which, yes, I'm sure would mortify the guy if he was still alive. I'm reporting how I feel, not what I think, OK?)

I also have the feeling that O'Brian was just being polite, and I think it's quite possible that he *wouldn't* be mortified. Because he certainly likes to make sexual jokes - Stephen discussing the "little cock" on his diving bell, and the wonderful "Pray take off your breeches and bend over that locker" line. He also isn't coy about discussing sodomy, as in Jack and Stephen's discussion of the "No penetration, no sodomy," rule in one of the later books, and quite a few other examples.

Wonderful recs, as always!
tried to eat the safe banana: Words.thefourthvine on January 7th, 2005 12:57 pm (UTC)
So it isn't just me! Thank god.

I've been re-reading the books (yes, again, but I have a good reason this time; I have to decide which to give to fanofall), and yet again I find myself stunned by the sheer, well, slashiness of it all. I read a substantial portion of Post Captain in the hallway of a movie theater (while the rest of my family was watching a bad movie) last week, and once again I found myself wondering if slash had somehow affected my brain. (Well, OK, I know it has. But I specifically wondered if it had made me incapable of not seeing slash - if my brain now just overlays everything - pinecones, tidal waves, Kwanzaa - with subtext.)

And then I remembered that I found just as much slashiness in the M&C books when I first read them, before I even knew what slash was.

You know, I think maybe an Age of Sail obsession makes a person inherently gay friendly. PO'B was apparently fairly relaxed about homosexuality - I mean, look at all those conversations between Jack and Stephen about buggery - surprisingly so, given his age and all.
semiellipticalsemielliptical on January 7th, 2005 01:15 pm (UTC)
You know, I think maybe an Age of Sail obsession makes a person inherently gay friendly. PO'B was apparently fairly relaxed about homosexuality - I mean, look at all those conversations between Jack and Stephen about buggery - surprisingly so, given his age and all.

And this makes me wonder, in a rambling way: I assume much of the detail in O'Brian's books is based on historical research, so is Jack and Stephen's relaxed attitude toward homosexuality based on this research as well as O'Brians own personal opinions? I guess I could do some reading and try to find out.
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 7th, 2005 01:30 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - semielliptical on January 7th, 2005 01:44 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 8th, 2005 05:23 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - semielliptical on January 9th, 2005 07:47 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 10th, 2005 07:44 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - semielliptical on January 10th, 2005 01:01 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Iphiginia Saberhagen: Dearest from perfect_duetfanofall on January 7th, 2005 11:04 am (UTC)
ILOVEYOUOHSOMUCH.

Four fics, four of my favorite fandoms, and I haven't read three of them. YAY!!! You are the fic-findingest wombat!
tried to eat the safe banana: Wombat crossingthefourthvine on January 7th, 2005 01:33 pm (UTC)
Yay! I have pleased the pimpingest wombat! (Of course, since you're responsible for me reading two out of the four fandoms here, it's not a total coincidence.) Which one had you read before? Out of curiosity.
Iphiginia Saberhagenfanofall on January 7th, 2005 03:01 pm (UTC)
Things to Get Arrested For in Singapore, because I am totally shrift's bitch. :-D
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 8th, 2005 05:24 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - fanofall on January 7th, 2005 03:02 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on January 8th, 2005 05:26 am (UTC) (Expand)
\o/: dS Tongue & Holding Handstrue_enough on January 7th, 2005 03:40 pm (UTC)
I love seeing Unplanned noticed. Fraser and RayK are so married that you have to see it to believe it. A thoughtless kiss is almost canon and Beth works with it seamlessly. Love it!
sheila: ozmimesere on January 7th, 2005 11:26 pm (UTC)
meep! *blush*

grazie :)