dorinda: In "Brideshead Revisited" (1981), Sebastian and Charles, arms around each other, look out to sea. (Brideshead_sea)
dorinda ([personal profile] dorinda) wrote2017-04-06 09:36 am

Night on Fic Mountain: dear author or artist

Dear author or artist,

Thank you so much for making something for me! Above all, I'd like you to have fun and create something you enjoy, so any other blatherings here are purely optional for reals. Just in case they might help. If you already have an idea, go for it!

Some of my general preferences:

First times. Happy or at least hopeful endings (that doesn't rule out bittersweet or melancholy tones, and needn't be fluffy...just no unalloyed sadness/darkness/loss please.).

I requested slash relationships, though for me that doesn't automatically require explicit sex. I mean, sex is great if the story or artwork calls for it. But don't feel hemmed in; it's entirely up to you. For me, slash is first about the depth of connection and intimacy between the characters, however it's expressed. I am, I admit, a sucker for tenderness. Especially coming from a repressed character for whom tenderness itself is an admission of vulnerability.

Some of the tropes and approaches I enjoy: words that camouflage deeper/unspoken meanings, protectiveness, worry, extreme competence (with honest weakness), hurt/comfort, chosen families, uncovering a secret, partners against the world, nurturing via food/drink/warmth. (Also, in stories I must admit I like past tense, unless there's a reason for present tense.)

Don't be afraid of classic frameworks if you like 'em! I mentioned hurt/comfort, but I also won't turn up my nose at Having To Share A Bed, Huddling for Warmth, Pretend Couple, Undercover as Rentboy, situations where one suffers or sacrifices for the other, rescues, stranded somewhere (idyllic or non-), etc.

A few thoughts by fandom, alphabetically:

Almost Human:
Dorian/John Kennex

I love an android character who is not, for once, striving to be "more human" as some longed-for condition. Dorian is his own being, and he has his own concerns. John instead is the one who does more changing, learning to mesh with and open up to Dorian, and getting through his previous trauma (which still must feel relatively recent for him, given his coma, even though the rest of the world has remorselessly moved on...sometimes I forget that!).

More casework could be nice, seeing them on the job in the sort of cases we didn't get a chance to see on TV. Maybe even the less dramatic, more daily-cop-life sorts of things that don't become Major Incidents (although, granted, they're not beat cops, but even detectives must have routine days and weeks, even in The Bladerunnerish Future). Dorian wanted so badly to be a cop, and still (I expect?) sees it with fresh eyes. Public service! ♥ Does that help John, in his traumatized, almost-burned-out place, maybe come a little more back to why he loved the job in the first place?

But a case isn't necessary, either—I'd just as much like to see them in their off time. Does Dorian get off time other than required charging? Or when John's off, does Dorian basically do a second shift? How else might John be learning to integrate Dorian into his life—or, how might Dorian be developing his own life, whether or not he is technically supposed to? Dorian can be a worrier, especially about his own potential instability. I like his vulnerabilities, and I like thinking about how John—who can be so emotionally repressed—ends up being Dorian's major emotional support on this issue.

And of course, questions of intimacy, sexuality, and the meshing of flesh and machine are always great! I like thinking about John's hangups, struggles, and breakthroughs in this regard—but also, what about the issue from Dorian's side of things? What might he want/need from a relationship?

Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World (2003)
Jack Aubrey/Stephen Maturin

I adore the movie's style and tone, and the way it adapts Jack and Stephen. Jack's love for and deep knowledge of his ship, the way he cares for his officers & crew but also carries such natural authority over them, and his unquestioned intimacy with Stephen (and vice versa); Stephen's passion for the natural world, his disdain for someone like Howard (ugh such a bro), his patience with Blakeney as they sit quietly together drawing beetles (or, in the deleted scenes, teaching Bonden to read). The ship becomes a timeless world of its own, with Jack and Stephen at the center, Jack the body and Stephen the mind, with the two of them together forming the heart. ♥

I know the movie already gives us hurt/comfort of various stripes for both characters, but I would love more if that's your sort of thing! Whether physical injury/tending, or emotional struggles/help, or whatever else, anything that would let them be in each other's space and show just how connected they are. They have an intimacy with each other, are allowed liberties with each other, that no one else is and that they've come to rely on in this isolated little world of theirs.

If you want to connect your work to specific moments in the movie, a missing scene or aftermath or whatever, feel free, but you certainly don't have to. I love that timeless, eternal feeling, with the Surprise a world unto itself, sailing on forever, so it could also take place at no time in particular.

I'm not a purist, re: book vs. movie. If you want to stick only to movie canon, that's great! If you want to mix the movie and books together in your own way, that's great! I love it all. (Also, don't worry about technicalities of sailing terminology or whatever—don't let that intimidate you. Include it if you want, skim over it if you want, it's all good.)

Rejseholdet | Unit One:
Allan Fischer/Thomas La Cour

Fischer and La Cour seem to need each other so much, like there's something they just can't get anywhere else. But they also seem to run into communication blockages--like, Fischer wants so much to be close to La Cour that he'll...he'll...MOVE INTO HIS FLAT (when La Cour isn't even there). Or La Cour wants to touch Fischer so much that he'll...PET HIS HEAD AND COVER IT BY COMPLAINING ABOUT ALL THE GEL. And as [personal profile] halotolerant has rightly pointed out, Fischer is an ambitious Bad Boy who doesn't do as he's told...unless La Cour complains about his hair, and then OFF IT ALL COMES.

They rely on the structure of the job to let them be together, work together, relax together, sit quietly in dark cars on stakeouts together, protect each other, rescue each other, talk about private and intimate things. And eventually, they rely on it to let them create a situation where literally Fischer's only lifeline is La Cour. They have this need to connect at very deep levels, but they can be sort of terrible at figuring out how, and I would love to see them finally learn to create and savor this connection without needing to pretend it's about something else.

I love their high levels of competence, each with their own very different angle: Fischer the expressive extrovert who is so good at talking with people, and La Cour the tightly-wrapped introvert who loses himself in the tiniest crime scene details. I love how matter-of-fact and supportive Fischer is about La Cour's abilities, even when they get otherworldly and frighten La Cour himself. I love their humor and the way they enjoy poking at and needling each other. But also how much they share with each other, support each other, think of each other. I love how it may initially seem like Fischer, the outgoing one, is the dominant personality, but in reality I think La Cour, the introverted one, seems to have more of the power.

Other characters are welcome, especially Ingrid and IP. I love the team! But Fischer and La Cour on their own would be great too.

The Sting (1973)
Henry Gondorff/Johnny Hooker

Henry and Johnny are mentor and mentored (bnf and n00b? :D ), but also equal partners by the end of the movie, each one bringing something valuable to the game. I love either or both of those dynamics, so feel free to suit yourself--I enjoy Henry teaching and Johnny learning, but also Johnny opening Henry's eyes or otherwise keeping him on his toes.

Another con could be lots of fun (or them helping with someone else's con), but absolutely don't feel like you have to. We could just see the "backstage" parts of whatever job they're on, or they could be doing something else...the quiet times between, or traveling to new hunting grounds, or working on some new set of skills they'd like to use in future. Maybe taking time to establish new cover identities someplace, like actors prepping for the upcoming audition season.

It seems to me like both of the characters are workaholics and risk junkies, and freelancers to boot, always keeping an eye out for the next project and flinging themselves wholly into it. When without a con to immerse himself in, we see Henry basically down-and-out...does he really have a troublesome relationship with alcohol, or is that just him being stultifyingly bored + depressed over Luther? Can Johnny stay as focused on a Big Con, spending the extra time and effort that his old Short Cons didn't require, without having that same personal link/desire for revenge? At the end of the movie it's practically like they're off on their honeymoon--how do their newlywed days go? How do they go about getting to know each other?

Other characters are welcome--I love the world of other con men and women that they live in, that feeling of a grifter society--or it could just be Henry and Johnny on their own.