The unmistakable gleam of pride in Arthur’s eye was tinged with the tiniest bit of admiration, and it straightened Merlin’s spine, made him want to charge back out and do it all again, just for the smile on Arthur’s face.
“Well done,” Arthur said, as they walked toward the kitchens, and Merlin paid no mind to the bone-deep aches and pains the week had wrought. Arthur’s praise was worth all of it, and more.
that feeling when you’ve been reading all those gentle soft happy fanfics where everyone is gay and in love and it’s not a big deal and their friends all support them.
and your favourite superhero couples and detectives and kings and warlocks are just domestic and happy.
and then you emerge into the real world and it’s just not like that.
you walk into your job in the morning and know that if anyone knew, you’d be out the door. kids use the word ‘gay’ as a slur and it might be silly but it makes something hurt inside your chest. you look at your mother and think of the words she’d use to cut you with if you told her. the disgust on her face. you have your family around you and you know it could all be shattered in a minute and it would be you who’d done it.
everyone assumes your straightness. people look at you strangely when you use ‘they/them’ pronouns when asking what their fiancé’s name is, bcs you don’t want to make the same mistake that others make with you. you file forms with spaces for the mother’s name and father’s name and wonder how you’d fill them out if you had a partner and a child. you work with children and wonder what they have to hide about themselves.
and then, sometimes, you go home and read some more fanfic. maybe you write some, or draw fanart if that’s your thing. that’s the best thing, that we’re dreaming about a better world. maybe we’re not famous or published or earning money for what we do. but writing and reading fanworks like this helps a heck of a lot of people, including me, feel happy and comforted and like it’s possible that they might belong one day. that it gets better.
thank you, everyone who creates fanworks where being gay is simply treated as normal. your work is healing and wholesome and full of heart and goodness. and much as i may love the canon, it’s not the canon - it’s the fanworks that are a safe haven to retreat to and recover and heal.
Hi guys! It’s been a while. This is the cover art for Poetry of Eternity, a Chinese language Merthur anthology that’s going to print this month. I don’t know if you can tell but this was supposed to be two separate works, I just wasn’t able to finish either before the deadline so… like is anyone really surprised. Maybe later this year I would be able to? Hopefully.
I’d also to rec this gorgeous fic: Dream A Little Dream by TheWiseMansFear. I enjoyed it immensely, especially the dialogue between the characters, and that it had so few hits just really baffled me like ??? (A friend later told me it’s cos of the formatting but I the further I read the less I noticed, I was so engrossed…) It’s really quite brilliant, I promise.