thefourthvine: Two people fucking, rearview: sex is the universal fandom. (Default)
Keep Hoping Machine Running ([personal profile] thefourthvine) wrote2012-02-18 11:00 am

Days of Love 5

Annnnnnd it's another pair of recs. I can't help myself. But, okay, here's the thing. For reasons that don't need exploring at this juncture, I have a strong interest in soulbonding right now. I admit that for a few weeks of the specific soulbonding project of doom, I spent a lot of time reading soulbond stories and saying, "That's not how it works." Because, you know, this is fandom, where I will fight for my right to be incredibly dogmatic and dictatorial about a completely imaginary concept.

But then I started actively seeking out all the different depictions of soulbonding in fan fiction, trying to figure out what the key elements of a soulbond are. (Yes, I have a list. It is a short list. Soulbonds are mysterious and mutable, is what they are.) And I found some fantastic stories in the process.

#BOOM!, by [livejournal.com profile] 26miledrive. Hockey RPF, Ryan Kesler/Andrew Ladd. (Helpful pairing primer featuring everything you need know to read this story. Although to be honest you don't even need to know who the guys are.)

Okay, so, first, I just need to say that this hockey thing has gotten out of hand. I know this because of two interactions with Best Beloved.

Scene 1: I am watching old hockey videos on YouTube, which I suspect is just about the worst way there is to watch hockey, but, whatever, it's what I can do. I am absolutely not yelling at the screen, no matter what BB says. BB is taking a bath.

BB, from bathtub: *laughter*
Me, assuming her book is amusing: What's funny?
BB: You. What happened?
Me: THAT WAS A COMPLETELY ILLEGAL HIT. THE BRUINS ARE FUCKING THUGS.
BB: *further laughter*
Me: It was! They are!
BB: I just can't believe you have opinions about this.
Me, sulkily: That isn't an opinion. It's a fact, and everyone knows it.1
BB: *laughs hard enough to displace a significant amount of water*

1 Yes, I said this even though I did not know it until very recently, and had to be taught by J. (Name redacted to protect the relatively innocent.) Thanks, J!

Scene 2: Dinner. I am breathlessly relating some hockey facts I have learned.

BB: Is the hockey season on right now?
Me: Yes! Of course!
BB: When does it end?
Me: Regular season ends in April. Why?
BB: Find out if there's tickets. Or whatever.
Me: But why?
BB: I can sense it coming. You're going to want to go to one. You might as well be prepared.
Me: Don't be ridiculous. I'm not going to a hockey game.

[Some days pass.]

BB: You want to go to a hockey game, don't you?
Me: ...Yeah, I kind of do.
BB: *does not say anything, but radiates smugness from every pore*

My point is, there has to be an end to this, and quickly, before I end up at a hockey game with no idea what is going on. (Keep in mind that I do not do well in crowds, do not like loud noises, do not process visual information all that splendidly, and have no idea what attending a hockey game might be like. I am basically the last person who should ever go to a hockey game. With luck I'll be able to hold out until April. If not - has anyone out there ever been to one? Any tips?)

But it isn't my fault I'm like this! Hockey fandom is just so great, is all, and this story - yes, we're back to the story now - is proof. Because, okay, I suspect that hockey doesn't actually, in real actual fact, have evil fairy godmothers nicknamed Biz Nasty. (Seriously. The man tweets as BizNasty2point0. On the one hand - if you were nicknamed Biz Nasty, wouldn't you try to pretend you didn't know? On the other hand, man, I wish every evil fairy ever invited to a christening was named Biz Nasty. That right there would improve most fairy tales by at least 50%.) And I also suspect that Mr. Nasty can't actually forcibly soulbond people to make them work out their differences. (Through hatesex. I mean. How else are you going to work out your differences? It's hockey.)

But, oh, it's so much fun to imagine a world where hockey does, and he can. And this story is where that happens. It's the comedy of the soulbonding world, filled with bad behavior in Vegas and poorly-chosen helicopter tours and some really, really questionable decisions made by your friend and mine, Bad Fairy Biz Nasty.

Read it for the giggles, my friends. Read it for the giggles.

Apres moi le deluge, by [archiveofourown.org profile] beyond_belief. Generation Kill, Brad Colbert/Nate Fick.

And then, when you're done laughing, read this one for the quiet beauty and totally fascinating soulbond. (Sorry. I am basically the world's foremost soulbond scientist at this point. I cannot help categorizing these things; it is just my way. Look for my upcoming monograph, The Unbroken Thread: A Taxonomy of Soulbonds and Related Fantastical Connections, available wherever really boring books are sold.)

I love this one because - okay, if you're going to give two people a soulbond, hockey players who play for different teams and hate each other are actually a better choice than Nate and Brad. Usually, in fan fiction, we're writing about soulbonds between two people who spend, like, 18 hours a day together. (Oh, god, I just thought of a key and important question: Did anyone ever write a soulbond story in Sentinel fandom? I mean, they must have, right? Except it would actually be sort of pointless since it's basically canon. Still. If it's out there, I need to read it. I can't believe I never have.) Nate is off in Harvard, engaging in serious study and working to Make Our Nation Better! Brad is off in England, trying to drown Royal Marines! They have lives, is my point.

(And, yes, I did actually have a really long digression here about the worst fannish characters to have in a soulbond. I deleted it for the good of the recommendation, and I want you to know it was very hard to do. But if you have any opinions, feel free to weigh in. I mean, Methos? Buffy? Mycroft? So many possibilities!)

But in this story, in addition to lives, they also have a soulbond, and it's fabulous. I love how they fight it, how they learn to adapt to it, how they learn to deal with each other. And mostly I just love this story. I keep re-reading it, because it's one of those ones I just never feel finished with, you know? I'll be wandering around picking up toys and trying to persuade the child that there is a limit on the number of muffins we can make in one day, and suddenly I'll realize I need to go read that story. Again. And then I will spend the rest of the day thinking about the story while I pick up toys and make muffins.

Really, my only complaint here is that I want at least 50,000 more words of this. At least.
melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)

[personal profile] melannen 2012-02-18 07:38 pm (UTC)(link)
There is a lot, quite a lot, of fic involving Methos and soulbonds. In fact there was a whole subset of the fandom, back in the day, that derived itself from that one scene in canon (which is never explained nor mentioned again) where Methos and Mac have a spontaneous glowy conduit between them through which they share souls.

Buffy + various vampires has her own set of soulbonds, too. And there was at least one really highly rec'ced Sherlock fic (which I haven't read yet) where Sherlock, I believe, was Mycroft's soul, or something like that.

Most of those stories use the soulbond to change the characters, or at least fundamentally change the way they relate, though. It's sort of a shorthand for forcing characters into settled relationships and lives when they otherwise wouldn't, and it can be amazingly idtastically good that way.

On the other hand though what I loved so much about the Generation Kill story you rec'ced is that it doesn't do that - Nate and Brad don't have to change their lives, they just keep doing what they're doing, and add this one little wonderful secret to it. I want there to be more soulbond stories like that.

(I also really liked Eccentric Isolated Instances, which was rec'd to me on [community profile] kink_finders, and is MCR RPS. If you want to discuss inappropriate people to get soulbonded to, how about your brother's boyfriend?)

...I have to admit that it my private shipping my favorite soulbond pairings are the ones that are incredibly doomed no matter what, where the relationship is so broken that you can tell that even a soulbond won't fix things. Doctor/Master is my favorite - you can write a reasonable canon story that has them having been soulbonded all through canon and it really, really doesn't make anything better.

Similarly: Xavier/Magneto. XMFC fandom has come out with some stories where a soulbond fixes them, but there are at least as many where they were soulbonded all along and it didn't change canon, it just made their dreams less lonely in the decades when they were enemies.

(I also still want to write the XF story where the Cigarette Smoking Man and Mulder's Mom got accidentally soulbonded as a result of that time when he healed her stroke, and that their soulbond was the direct cause of her subsequently committing suicide and him hiding out in the Arctic and engaging in dangerous experimental brain surgery on himself, etc., because, um, that would explain a lot, but I am never going to actually write it, because it would also be horrendously depressing.)
kitewithfish: Evil smile (Default)

[personal profile] kitewithfish 2012-02-18 08:10 pm (UTC)(link)
Yes, I kind of love the brokenness of certain soulbonds- though with X-men and telepaths, it seems like it's a expansion of an aspect of canon that just makes things so much more deliciously complicated.

I recommend film TiMER as the closest I've seen mainstream film to get to the idea of soulbonds. A person has the option of getting fitted with a TiMER, a small digital device that counts down to the moment you will meet your One True Love, and it will zero out and BEEEEEEP to let you know that you've found him. In a tiny spoiler, the brother of the main character meets the daughter of the family's new Mexican housekeeper when they are both fourteen, and BEEEEEP. Everyone tries to be really happy about it, but damn! it's a whole new awkward.
melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)

[personal profile] melannen 2012-02-18 09:07 pm (UTC)(link)
Really, a lot of fandoms where I like the soulbonds are the ones where there's a really obvious way in for canon. I mean I love reading the fic regardless, and often in fic, the crackier the mechanism the better - I just read #boom and it is awesome while having a deeply random soulbond mechanism - but when I think about stories I myself want to write, or where I think about ships in those terms, it's in the canons where they have canon soulbonds, or have something that's close enough for government work.

(Can I admit here that I ship Reboot Kirk/Spock as one of those deeply and inevitably broken soulbonds? Because I do.)
melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)

[personal profile] melannen 2012-02-18 10:32 pm (UTC)(link)
>>Uh, what now? X-Files canon is CONFUSING AS FUCK.

...how much XF canon do you know? Basically, Bill Mulder, Teena Mulder, and the Cigarette Smoking Man, in a polyamorous world, would have made the MOST ADORABLE TRIAD EVER and raised their part-alien psychic kids in a beautiful happy family. But this was in the middle of a political conspiracy in the 1960s America so instead they fell apart in a miasma of spousal abuse, infidelity, secrets, resentment, despair and assassinations.

It is unclear whether Bill or CSM was the bio-father of either or both of the Mulder kids, and also unclear as to whether we ever learned CSM's real name. Teena and Bill eventually get divorced after their daughter was abducted by aliens but then (apparently?) raised by CSM's family with or without their knowledge, CSM goes all cold and hard and scary-powerful, Bill gets murdered probably on CSM's orders, and Teena, who is at this point a frail white-haired old lady, has tried to leave all this behind her, and is the only person who can stand up to CSM unscathed, and gets in shouting matches with him whenever somebody tries to drag her back in. (He pines over her! Pines. Though possibly partly because he can't let himself acknowledge his feelings re: Bill.)

Then everything goes even farther to shit and the stuff I mentioned with the stroke that CSM forces the aliens to cure and the arctic cabin of wtf and the suicide and the brain surgery and so on happens but this is about the point where XF canon stops making any sense AT ALL. :D

...man, I'd forgotten how much I was passionate about the XF parental generation.

ETA: Also you can probably tell but I also find talking about soulbonds to be VERY INTERESTING!
Edited 2012-02-18 22:46 (UTC)
aris_tgd: Wheelchair Ballroom, text: "Dance" (dance)

[personal profile] aris_tgd 2012-02-19 01:00 am (UTC)(link)
Okay, I have to know, was the Sherlock one the daemon/HDM AU where Sherlock is Mycroft's daemon? Because if it's not, I want to read the one you're talking about.
laurajv: (Default)

[personal profile] laurajv 2012-02-18 11:55 pm (UTC)(link)
Mmm broken soulbonds! I used to read myself sick on those in HP fandom (you can soulbond Snape with everyone!).
melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)

[personal profile] melannen 2012-02-19 12:53 am (UTC)(link)
....I feel like there probably is a fic out there where Snape is soulbonded to everyone. He feels the pain of the whole world! Literally!