and minorities being awesome

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Chapter 7 - The road to Clarines is gravel - Codango - Akagami no Shirayukihime | Archive of Our Own
An Archive of Our Own, a project of the Organization for Transformative Works
By Organization for Transformative Works

Chapters: 7/?
Fandom: 赤髪の白雪姫 | Akagami no Shirayukihime
Rating: Mature
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Obi/Shirayuki (Akagami no Shirayukihime)
Characters: Shirayuki (Akagami no Shirayukihime), Garack Gazelt, Shidan, Obi (Akagami no Shirayukihime), Zen Wistalia, Kiki Seiran, Mitsuhide Rouen, Raji Shenazard, Ryuu (Akagami no Shirayukihime), Yuzuri (Akagami no Shirayukihime), Mihaya (Akagami no Shirayukihime)
Additional Tags: Brothels, Alternate Universe - Modern Setting, Hiding, Running Away, Safe Haven, Alternate Universe - Western, Road Trips, Eventual Smut, Sex Work, Women Being Awesome, Fights, Healing, Bruises, Minor Violence, Slow Burn
Series: Part 1 of Clarines, Nebraska
Summary:

Obi is sitting on the dented prep station. Shirt off. Mud on his jeans. Dirt and sweat streaked over his face. Shidan’s standing next to him, awkwardly holding a Ziplock bag of ice in a towel over Obi’s left shoulder. Ryuu is lugging a bucket of soapy water over from the industrial sink. All three men turn to look up at her with varying degrees of guilt.

Shirayuki finds her voice. “What…on earth.”

“It is not my fault,” Obi says quickly. “These two are making it look way worse than it is. In fact, I think they’re bored, need somethin’ to do.”

Shidan’s head whips around. “You got kicked by a cow! It barely missed your heart!”

“It did miss, though. And she was pulling her punch by the time it got to me, I think she didn’t mean it.”

a sanguine heart replied to your post: So I’m rewatching the Leverage season …

Eliot heals - those two words make me wanna cry.

Me tooooo, but they’re my favorite thing, as well. I was thinking about how Eliot changed and it didn’t really seem like he did, much. He’s still angry, he still thinks the same, he’s still fighty. His character doesn’t change. But what does, is his emotional state.

It’s so under stated, too. Like, you have to look for it, in little lines he says and does. 

Like, this is season 1, episode 7:

This is in s3, e16:

Despite all the yelling and threats of violence and “Damn it, Hardison!”, Eliot still looks at Hardison this way:

Or when he thought Hardison was about to die?

The way he puts up with happy pill Parker hugs with a smile:

How bout the fact that he prefers Parker and Hardison to crutches when he’s been shot twice saving them (and the world):

But like, who Eliot was before?

“You have no idea who I was before all this started. That guy — kid — he had God in his heart, and he had a flag on his shoulder… Clean hands. And I ain’t seen him in the mirror in over 10 years. And believe me, I get up every morning looking for him. So you can trust me when I tell you, you pull that trigger, and two men die — the guy you kill… and the guy you used to be.”

“Want to know why I know these things?…Because I can’t forget. So there’s nothing you can do, no punishment you can hand out that’s worse than what I live with every day. So to answer your question, no, I never counted. I don’t need to.” 

“I did things that I didn’t want to do because they counted on me — bad things for good reasons. And you know what I learned? Bad choices are bad choices. Doesn’t matter why you made them. And they tear you apart from the inside out. And you don’t even notice.”

“You think you know what I’ve done? The worst thing I ever did in my entire life I did for Damien Moreau. And I … I’ll never be clean of that.”

And now?

Sophie: Look, you told me that it’s about control, about knowing that you’re never gonna be the victim. And that’s what keeps you going, right?

Eliot: You think I’m upset ‘cause I got to let this guy kick my ass? I learned a long time ago, you can’t control the violence. I can take the punishment. That’s what I do. What I need to control is not out there. (touches his chest) It’s here. Always.

He says this to Nate in s5 e04:

“I met Toby. We were reconning this restaurant in Belgium. And I should have closed him out. I should have been in and out in under 90 seconds. But I ended up talking to him for three hours. He showed me that I could use my knife to create instead of destroy. I stuck around for a couple of months. He taught me everything there was about the art of food, and I… He’s one of the guys that kept me from falling all the way down. So now, I’m asking the other guy to understand why I’m gonna help him.

—-

Nate says to Eliot in the series finale, “You know, Eliot. I’d say call if you need anything, but you never…never need anything.”

And Eliot says, “Yeah, I did.” Looks at Hardison and Parker, then back to Nate, says, “And thanks to you…I don’t have to search anymore.”

Then Sophie says to Eliot, re: Parker and Hardison “Promise me you’ll keep them safe.”

"Til my dying day.”

I JUST. Okay, Eliot has come so, so far emotionally speaking. He found a family. Nate showed him a family, primarily in Parker and Hardison. And he would do anything to protect them. Anything to keep them safe. And anything to keep them near him.

In the season 1 finale, he says, “As annoying as you people are, I quit this crew when *I* quit this crew. Nobody makes me leave.”

In The Big Bang Job (3.15) when he says the worst thing he did, he did for Damien Moreau, Parker asks what he did. He says:

“Don’t ask me that, Parker. Because if you ask me, I’m gonna tell you. So please don’t ask me.”

Because he will, he really will tell her if she really wants to know, but he knows that she’ll never look at him the same way again, probably none of them would. And he couldn’t handle that, because they mean too much to him.

So yeah, Eliot’s character growth isn’t a change in his character, he’s already smart and strong and already understands the world around him. He doesn’t overcome substance abuse, like Nate, or learn to function in the world, because he knows that already, too.

What Eliot needs in the beginning of the show is a family. He needs to move on from his old life, stop being a retrieval expert, stop being a goon for hire. He needed purpose and direction and family. He needed to heal and be a man proud of who he is and proud of the people he stands beside.

From 5x09, The Rundown Job

[Eliot walks in, Riley sees him]

Riley: A lot of guys, this is the last thing they ever see.

Eliot: I already told you I ain’t in the game anymore. But I can’t let this go down, so I’m gonna need to see that file.

Riley: Why’d you quit, anyway?

Eliot: Started running with some different people… Like a hacker. And a thief.

—-

Then, later, when the job they’re about to pull is too big and too overwhelming:

Eliot: You scared?

Hardison: You’re damn right.

Eliot: I’m not. I got the best thief and the smartest guy I know chasing this guy. Hey, listen to me. You’re smartest man I’ve ever known, Hardison. I need that brain to get me to him.

So yeah. YEAH. Eliot Heals. That’s my choice in character growth. And now you, too, can be overburdened with an abundance of Eliot feels, just like me.

#NewtoClassicWho: Recommendations

So I’m late, but lemme lay out some classic Who episode recs, keeping in mind we all have totally different tastes. I tend to have high tolerance for bad special effects and camp if the characters and story are fun and/or the dialogue is snarky or eloquent.

My suggestion is to watch two serials each of the first seven Doctors, selecting from those with companions who have piqued your interest, and The Five Doctors after you’ve watched two or three different classic Doctors. Here’s my picks.

First Doctor:

Unearthly Child all by itself, the first half hour episode, sets the stage and feels like time travel all on its own because 1963 was a long time ago. Meet Barbara and her sensible shoes and sweater, Ian the skeptic, the Doctor at his most enigmatic and maddening before the show’s producers had even worked out who or what he was, and Susan, a fascinating mix of younger-audience stand-in and Mary Sue and otherworldly person. If you’re struggling with the rest of the serial, which develops the TARDIS team’s characters but is more than usually dated, I hereby give you permission to skip ahead.

For a full serial, I feel that The Aztecs is a good historical, even though Barbara is White Savior. The side characters are surprisingly complex, apart from the villain (see: Susan’s tutor, the Doctor’s would-be fiancée).

Or try The Romans, which is just plain fun, a lighthearted historical with everybody spoofing I, Claudius. It’s goofy, it’s great, it’s got dear Vicki, and you’ll see how much the Doctor has learned and mellowed after a year or so with Barbara and Ian teaching him compassion. 

Second Doctor:

Unfortunately, I’m not as familiar with Second Doctor episodes, most of which were lost and have been rediscovered since I was watching reruns on PBS in the 80s. My favorite of the extant episodes was The Mind Robber, with Jamie & Zoe (I love Zoe; she’s so smart) and the Doctor in a rather Alice in Wonderland surreal episode. Nowadays we’d call it a virtual reality story, but it was decades before the concept existed.

Alternatively, now that The Web of Fear has been rediscovered, I’d suggest that one, although I still need to watch it myself. It introduces Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, one of the most beloved Who characters ever, back when he was a Colonel (soldier, pompous ass, misogynist, yet after a while one comes to love him and his eye-rolling 500% Done With the Doctor moments). Be charmed by the bad special effects and the “monsters stomping around London” plot which was a staple of late 60s/early70s Who.

Third Doctor: My favorite Doctor growing up, it’s hard for me to choose. 

I suggest either Spearhead from Space, the first third Doctor episode, with some delightful character moments with the Brig and Liz Shaw, plus the introduction of the Autons, or Terror of the Autons, which is a good story that introduces the Master in his original, suave and charismatic incarnation. 

Despite its campiness, I have to put in a plug for my all-time favorite, the ridiculous The Time Monster. It features the original Master in his heyday, Jo Grant being adorably ditzy yet standing up to the Master in her own plucky way, Atlantis, the Brigadier and UNIT, the Doctor’s famous “when I was a little boy” speech, Sergeant Benton and some early well-intentioned attempts at feminism. Laugh. Have fun. Enjoy the campy acting.

Or, for a much more powerful story (although it’s a seven-parter that’s slow in places), I suggest Inferno, which features Dr. Elizabeth Shaw, the third Doctor’s PhD scientist sidekick, and a dystopian mirror-universe. Evil!Brigadier is worth seeing.

Fourth Doctor:  I suggest trying two of the following. 

-The Masque of Mandragora has great costumes, great setting, the Italian Renaissance, classic Sarah Jane Smith, and hilarious elocution. Plus the cutest damn gay couple in all of classic Who. 

- The Pirate Planet is written by Douglas Adams, and is just fun over-the-top 70s SF romp (Romana, but alas, not Lalla Ward’s regeneration. 

-Watch City of Death for Lalla Ward; everyone does. Bonus: John Cleese sighting).

-  Face of Evil is an interesting alien dystopia, one of the first times a Doctor Screws Up Royally and has to admit it, but more importantly, it introduces Leela the warrior— think a young Xena, about 20 years before Xena— who is another of my favorite companions. 

-And for personal reasons, I have to put in a plug for The Keeper of Traken, which is a good late Fourth Doctor story, a fun Shakespearean costume drama / fantasy story that brings back a villain we’ve been missing for far too long (I say, avoiding spoilers).

Fifth Doctor: Best regeneration episode ever, IMO, Castrovalva is still a charming introduction to the Doctor and one of my favorite TARDIS teams, plus Ainley!Master is having a ball being an uncured ham. Kinda is marred by the infamous monster scene at the end— try to find the CGI version— but it’s an interestingly psychological drama dealing with various kinds of madness, sneaking in Hindu symbolism in a very SF setting. It also has Tegan/Janet Fielding being sexy and terrifying. But if you watch just one Fifth Doctor episode, watch Enlightenment — yes, I know, there’s a villain with a dead bird hat, but the basic story concept is fantastic. I won’t spoil it.

Sixth Doctor: Uh. I need to rewatch this period; I really didn’t like it as a teenager. I do recall Vengeance on Varos being awesome, anticipating reality TV by about two decades. The Two Doctors, come to think of it, was also fairly good, if a bit macabre. (Jamie & Two return, and Jacqueline Pierce, Servalan of Blake’s 7 fame, makes a fun sub-villain).

Seventh Doctor: Actually one of my favorite Doctors when he was on the air, I loved most of his episodes (in which I seem to be the minority), but anyway, Battlefield. WATCH BATTLEFIELD. Ace McShane being awesome, ridiculous King Arthur stuff, Jean Marsh coming back in a great role, and the Brig coming out of retirement to be his usual endearing crusty self. If you want more Seven, my next suggestion is the uber-meta Remembrance of the Daleks, one of many times when the Doctor is impressive in his rhetoric, Ace is dangerous, and Coal Hill School makes its first appearance since Unearthly Child. This was the first time in 26 years that the Daleks finally conquered the stairs, which resulted in a hilariously meta cliffhanger.

Eighth Doctor: The movie, of course. And then we get into Big Finish. I would really recommend starting at the beginning, Storm Warning. But you could also jump straight to Seasons of Fear, which I think is one of the better early Charley & Eight stories.

Last but not least, after you’ve seen a little bit of classic Who (a few episodes, not necessarily every Doctor), I suggest watching The Five Doctors as a fanservice introduction to a lot of classic Doctors and companions, plus Ainley!Master being his charming self. Bonus: Gallifrey and the High Council of Time Lords as they really were during classic Who.

archiveofourown.org
Chapter 5 - The road to Clarines is gravel - Codango - Akagami no Shirayukihime | Archive of Our Own
An Archive of Our Own, a project of the Organization for Transformative Works
By Organization for Transformative Works

Chapters: 5/?
Fandom: 赤髪の白雪姫 | Akagami no Shirayukihime
Rating: Mature
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Obi/Shirayuki (Akagami no Shirayukihime)
Characters: Shirayuki (Akagami no Shirayukihime), Garack Gazelt, Shidan, Obi (Akagami no Shirayukihime), Zen Wistalia, Kiki Seiran, Mitsuhide Rouen, Raji Shenazard, Ryuu (Akagami no Shirayukihime)
Additional Tags: Brothels, Alternate Universe - Modern Setting, Hiding, Running Away, Safe Haven, Alternate Universe - Western, Road Trips, Eventual Smut, Sex Work, Women Being Awesome, Fights, Healing, Bruises, Minor Violence
Summary:

“What’re you wearing tonight?” Yuzuri asks.

“I…um? What?”

Yuzuri cocks her head. “Tonight? When we open?”

Shirayuki’s mouth gapes. A squeak is all that comes out.

“You’re coming downstairs, right? Everyone does.” Yuzuri steps close, arms folded, a frown forming.

“Everyone?” Shirayuki’s throat is dry. “Is it mandatory? I can’t…I’m not really good at…you know.” She waves a helpless hand.

Both of Yuzuri’s eyebrows shoot up into her blond hair, and then she’s doubled over, holding her stomach she’s laughing so hard. Shirayuki isn’t sure why she feels a little insulted.

“You’re not working,” Yuzuri manages finally. “I mean, not like me. You’re just there to fill space.”

archiveofourown.org
Chapter 6 - The road to Clarines is gravel - Codango - Akagami no Shirayukihime | Archive of Our Own
An Archive of Our Own, a project of the Organization for Transformative Works
By Organization for Transformative Works

Chapters: 6/?
Fandom: 赤髪の白雪姫 | Akagami no Shirayukihime
Rating: Mature
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Obi/Shirayuki (Akagami no Shirayukihime)
Characters: Shirayuki (Akagami no Shirayukihime), Garack Gazelt, Shidan, Obi (Akagami no Shirayukihime), Zen Wistalia, Kiki Seiran, Mitsuhide Rouen, Raji Shenazard, Ryuu (Akagami no Shirayukihime), Yuzuri (Akagami no Shirayukihime), Mihaya (Akagami no Shirayukihime)
Additional Tags: Brothels, Alternate Universe - Modern Setting, Hiding, Running Away, Safe Haven, Alternate Universe - Western, Road Trips, Eventual Smut, Sex Work, Women Being Awesome, Fights, Healing, Bruises, Minor Violence, Slow Burn
Summary:

“H-hi.” Shirayuki is fairly confident she’s never spoken to a woman like her before. She’s also fairly confident a woman has never looked at her like this before.

“Do I get to know who I’m drinking with?” asks the blonde. Kiki. She smiles, and it’s elegantly welcoming.

“Red,” she chokes out. “I’m Red. Just Red.”

Kiki hums. “Well, then. Just Red. Are you here with anyone tonight?” Blue eyes scan the length of Shirayuki’s black dress.

Shirayuki squeaks out something that might be a no.

Kiki laughs softly. “Forgive me,” she says. Takes another sip of wine. “I’ve never been here before. I’m not entirely certain…” She glances around the room. “…who is who.”

“Who is who?” Shirayuki repeats.

“Some are obvious, I grant you. But you have me a little stumped.” Kiki’s teeth are so white behind red lipstick.

archiveofourown.org
Chapter 4 - The road to Clarines is gravel - Codango - Akagami no Shirayukihime | Archive of Our Own
An Archive of Our Own, a project of the Organization for Transformative Works
By Organization for Transformative Works

Chapters: 4/?
Fandom: 赤髪の白雪姫 | Akagami no Shirayukihime
Rating: Mature
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Obi/Shirayuki (Akagami no Shirayukihime)
Characters: Shirayuki (Akagami no Shirayukihime), Garack Gazelt, Shidan, Obi (Akagami no Shirayukihime), Zen Wistalia, Kiki Seiran, Mitsuhide Rouen, Raji Shenazard, Ryuu (Akagami no Shirayukihime)
Additional Tags: Brothels, Alternate Universe - Modern Setting, Hiding, Running Away, Safe Haven, Alternate Universe - Western, Road Trips, Eventual Smut, Sex Work, Women Being Awesome, Fights, Healing, Bruises, Minor Violence
Summary:

Cleaning the cut on Obi’s palm isn’t a big deal. Or it shouldn’t be. She doesn’t have much that would really let her make a fuss, to be honest. The first-aid kit has hydrogen peroxide, Neosporin, and butterfly bandages. It’s nursing a high-school babysitter could manage.

But she’s having so much trouble concentrating right now, she might as well be sitting midterms.

“You gonna see everyone like this?” Obi is glancing around the kitchen like he’s never seen it before. Perhaps he hasn’t, not from this angle. He’s perched on a little-used countertop in the west corner of the kitchen. She has the first-aid kit strewn out sloppily next to him. She herself has the dubious honor of standing kind of in between his legs, his palm laid out on one thigh.

“I’ll do this in the office,” she says, head bent low over his hand to trim away some dead skin with a pair of nail scissors she hastily wiped down with rubbing alcohol. “When I get a desk in there and some chairs and some decent light.”

“Someone’s got big plans.” She can just hear the smile on his face. She refuses to look up.

“There’s not a lot I can do with what’s here, so—”

“Garack does what she can,” he cuts in bluntly. “It’s usually enough.”

COVERT AFFAIRS WHAT ARE YOU DOING

You were supposed to give me another season of Annie and her sexy spy games and interesting characters and and and dammit why is season 3 so full of feels

They’re actually changing themselves to the Cumbercollectives. Most of them have.

They’ve gone down the route of reversing the negative backlash of however many years of feminism and it was a little bit worrying.

—  Benedict Cumberbatch saying the right things about a minority of his fans names and being an awesome feminist.

Reverts are surrounded on all sides by frustrating experiences. They have to deal with ignorance and intolerance from other faith based family and friends, and often have to deal with the same thing from the Muslim community. Add a few bad relationships or failed love stories in and you have a recipe for some serious bitterness.

Being a Muslim is awesome, becoming a minority is difficult. PLEASE BE MERCIFUL