okay so i LOVE mulan okay. as far as i’m concerned it’s a Perfect Movie and doesn’t need any fixing. but i was thinking today and -
- what if mulan didn’t go to war to save her father?
say her father is dead, okay, killed by the previous war. so she’s raised by her mother and grandmother, women who’s complacency and softness has been worn away by necessity. she needs to marry well, for her family’s sake, because her mother has refused the hand of every man who offered. but mulan is even more rough around the edges than before, is educated not only in books (her mother said men wouldn’t find smarts attractive and grandmother pointed out that men aren’t always around and off to school mulan went) but in the sword too, taught to her by her classmate, ping.
mulan is considered in the lower end of the upper class, coming from a family of military men and scholars and successful merchants. ping is near the top, the son or nephew of an advisor to the emperor. his family is very rich and very important, and the reason they become friends is because mulan manages to notice something about him that he’s been hiding from everyone else - he’s going blind.
not totally blind, enough to get around, but blind enough that reading is difficult and swordplay is even worse, although once he has it down he has it. ping is no fool, he’s not weak or bumbling. his eyes just don’t work. so mulan notices and confronts him about it. she promises to keep it a secret, and hey, she’ll even help him with his assignments by reading the books out loud and helping him study. but in return he must teach her the sword, must teach her about military and tactics. he agrees.
ping and mulan become very good friends and there’s some raised eyebrows about it but they are TOO far away in class for it to be inappropriate, so they make tutting sounds and disapproving faces and let it go.
then the draft happens. ping can’t go to war, he won’t survive it. not with his eyesight like it is. so mulan offers him a deal - she’ll go to war for him, in his place. in return, if she survives, he must marry her. if she dies he must take care of her family.
ping can’t make this kind of family decision on his own, so he goes to his mother and tells her everything, about the eyesight and how he’ll die if he goes and mulan’s offer. his mother says he must keep it a secret from his father, but agrees - if mulan fights in her son’s place and survives, a wedding will be arranged. either way, mulan’s family will be taken care of. ping will be sent to live with some cousins in the meanwhile.
“you’re not in love with me, are you?” ping asks, helping mulan saddle her horse in the middle of the night. she scoffs and rolls her eyes, “not even a little. but marrying you will make my family happy, and besides, you’re my best friend,” she says, smiling, “better you than some grabby old man.” he smiles and hugs her and says, “i’m not in love with you either. but don’t die out there. we have a wedding to plan.”
so mulan goes to the camp, pretending to be ping, and she’s a little bit less lost but things still go as they go. she’s educated and trained, so it’s not hard for her to pass as ping. shang is keeping a special eye on her, thinking that she’s the son of an advisor, one of his father’s friends. and he sees how easily she excels, how quick thinking and smart she is, and starts giving her more and more responsibilities. by the time they’re called out, shang considers ping ie mulan to be his right hand man, and possibly his best friend.
he’s also a little bit in love with ping, and he’s long known he’s attracted to both genders, so he watches ping laugh and smile and the crease between his eyes when he frowns and does his best to let his feelings chase away the best soldier he has. every time shang looks at ping his heart clenches and he things to himself: i wish i could have you, i wish this was a time and a place where one man could have another, i wish you were a girl, is wish i was a girl - i wish we could be together. he’s literally a step away from doodling ‘li ping’ with little hearts over his battle plans.
so the battles happen. shang and ping lead their men together, respected and loved. they each get promoted, and promoted, and promoted. it’s been years, and it comes to a point where they’re both generals in their own right. they trust each other, care for each other. and are both secretly in love with the other.
mulan is so conflicted. because she wants this war to end and to go home and settle back into life and become ping’s wife, so she can have an easy life spent studying and learning with her family taken care of. that’s what she’d wanted. but now what she wants is shang, her best friend, her brother in arms, her fellow general. she wishes to be everything to him, aches to be the woman on his arm and in his bed, but knows it’s the one thing she can never be.
then that final battle happens. mulan’s quick thinking saves them all and ends the war - but she’s injured.
shang finds out the ping has been a girl all along. he demands explanations - so she tells him everything, that she traded places with ping to save him, to become his wife.
and the lies should sting the sharpest, but they don’t. she’s still the same person, after all. it’s that she’s promised to another man, for one second he’d thought he might have her, but no. so he agrees not to reveal her but he’s furious and furious at himself for being furious and they’re not the same now, broken and splintered and neither of them know what to do.
the war is over. they leave. mulan returns home, and thanks to her ping is now known as a respected general. she’s done her part and survived, and now she gets her reward - ping’s hand in marriage.
but she sees ping for the first time and flings herself into his arms and starts crying. she tells him everything, because he’s still her friend, her very best friend besides shang, the man whom she lied to and betrayed and loves. and ping listens and takes her by the shoulders and says - i’ll uphold our bargain, if that’s what you want. you can be my pampered wife, you’ve more than earned it. but if you want to go to shang, i won’t blame you. you deserve your happiness.
and mulan goes back and forth, but ultimately she decides she has to try. if shang rejects her she’ll return and marry ping and uphold her family honor. but if shang wants her - he’s not as high up as ping, but he’s high up enough to satisfy her family, and also she would love him and want him if he was no more than a farming peasant so it doesn’t matter much anyway.
she rides to the capitol. she finally meets ping’s father, running into him while looking for shang. “ah mulan,” says this man who was never supposed to know of her until she became his daughter-in-law, “i didn’t expect to see you here. how fortuitous. walk with me.” she does, wary, and that’s how she discovers - he and the emperor had discovered her deception a year in, but at that point she’d already proven herself too skilled and valuable to lose. he tells her that he will uphold his son and wife’s deal and gladly welcome her to his household - but that she’s earned her rank as general, and that he and the emperor have no problem with letting her keep it.
she says thank you, shocked and joyful, but that she has to talk to someone first. “ah, yes, young general li,” he says, eyes twinkling, “i do believe he’s around here somewhere.”
she has no idea how he seems to know everything, but she finally tracks down shang who’s ecstatic to see her and hates himself for it. she confesses - says she loves him, that she’s engaged to ping but willing and able to break this engagement for shang. who is dumbfounded and elated and says yes, of course, finally and forever.
and mulan accepts her rank and marries shang, and they become the literal power battle couple of the general li mulan and general li shang. ping becomes a scholar and marries a very nice young woman who loves reading and is happy to read aloud to her husband with his failing eyes.
so Shire-talk is canonically a very different dialect of Westron than what Gondorians or Elves or whatever speak and some of the hobbits can code switch between the two and it’s extremely interesting to see how Tolkien portrays it
I’ve just gotten to the part where Frodo meets Faramir, and the difference between how he talks to Faramir and how he talks to Sam, for instance, is v noticable
with Sam he’s a lot more casual and even slightly more modern (for the value of 1954, not 2017) vs with Faramir where he switches to this very formal, quite archaic to our ears (“seven companions we had”)
and then Sam himself doesn’t seem comfortable speaking this prestige dialect (his style includes rather more general “vernacular” features common across regional nonliterary English dialects) - probably bc unlike Frodo he was not given the type of education that would lend itself to learning how to speak it comfortably - so there’s this clash between how Faramir talks to them and how Sam talks back
there’s also the bit where Theoden meets Merry and Pippin, and Merry greets him in very high formality, Pippin addresses Gimli casually bc they’re friends, then turns to Theoden and switches to the formal style, they both talk some more to him, and then after he’s gone Pippin turns to Merry and says Theoden was a “fine old fellow, very polite” (in the more casual style)
In that one scene you have a lot of style switching depending on the person they’re addressing and their status and relationship to the hobbits, but, for instance, Gimli’s sentence structure sounds more like the formal dialect even when he’s happily berating them and calling them villains, probably because he doesn’t use Shire-talk
When all the books on your enormous to be read pile look fantastic and you can’t focus properly on the one you’re currently reading because you start to panic that you will never find time to read all the books and then you just end up going on tumblr instead, but then you find even more books you want to read.
I’m so upset that Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard is only going to be a trilogy. I love this series so much and I want to read so many more books about Magnus’ adventures as well as Blitz and Hearth and Samirah. Will we get fierrochase? What about Blitzstone? The Samir wedding!?!? There’s no time for all of that to happen in one more book. Unless Rick Riordan writes one hell of an epilogue. Or maybe just write a whole book for an epilogue.
Do you have a fave xmen? I always loved nightcrawler and colossus, but boy are they never going to get focused on much
GAMBIT. ALWAYS GAMBIT. MY BOY, GAMBIT. i also love nightcrawler, but GAMBIT. and ORORO AND REMY ARE THE BEST BROTP. i would do. anything. for them to get a miniseries together. being bros. specifically remy is like ororo’s big brother on account of how they met and, look, i just can’t believe that they ever really managed to shake that dynamic, she’s like the smart younger sister and he’s the bad boy older brother who would do anything for her and and and ;w;
unfortunately Gambit has become Plot Hole Spackle as well as sometimes acting as a literal convenient shrubbery to hide other peoples’ nudity so he’s the most misused and accidentally powerful character in x-men, and i will probably never get the Gambit And Stormy’s Robin Hood Adventures series that i really want out of life
I’m taking a break from tumblr. Like I’m completely logging off and everything for a few days. Maybe longer.
Im having some bad mental health days and with that comes the idea that my art is the worst. I’m not improving as quickly as I’d like. I need to go back to traditional art for awhile, read some books, center myself. I am getting short tempered, stressed, and feeling like a really unpleasant person and I don’t want that to be who I am.
It also means, even though I just started it, I’m putting my ask blog on hold.
If you need to get in touch with me, I do have a twitter. I don’t post a lot on there and mostly follow funny twitter accounts and other art “blogs” but I do check it regularly. You can find me @Lozeyjones on twitter.
I’ll reblog this once more for the day crowd but as of now I’m taking a vacation away from this site. I can’t handle much anymore.
Again, my twitter is @lozeyjones
I also check deviantart frequently (every day) so you can find me there as just Lozey.
I’m sorry I’ll be absent for awhile, but I do think that to feel better about myself and my art, I need to get off of this website to cool down and rethink things.
I hope everyone else is doing fine, however. I’ll just be on for the next 24 hours so if you need to let me know anything, tell me now or I won’t be able to get back to you for some time.
Do you ever just think about all the books you’re planning to read in the next few months, but then you realise there are so many more books that you also really want to read, but you won’t have time to get to them for at least 4 months and by that time there will be EVEN MORE books you really want to read and you just get incredibly frustrated?
i’ll give you the sun by jandy nelson - centered around a pair of artistically gifted twins, noah and jude. (noah is gay.) they’re driven apart by the secrets they’re keeping and an ill timed death and try to find away back to each other over the course of the book.
you know me well by nina lacour & david levithan - two (gay) classmates, mark and kate, have a chance run in at a (gay) bar and form the brotp of a lifetime.
robins in the night by dajo jago - the story of robin hood retold with robin hood as a trans woman. dangerous vigilante lesbians are everywhere in this book. just trust me and read it its so fun
wolfsong by tj klune - the werewolf romance of your dreams tbh. the protagonist is the sweetest, most wonderful person and you will fall in love with all of the characters in this book. also, like no one is straight. not a lot of girls in this book though. very much a dude book.
The strangled noise Aaron made was his best attempt at Andrew’s name. It was barely intelligible but it was enough. Andrew, who’d barely acknowledged Aaron’s existence in the entire time Neil had known them, looked immediately to his brother. Andrew snaked a hand out from under the sheet and curled his fingers in a demand. Aaron clambered onto the bed and reached for Andrew. “Andrew,” Aaron said, desperate and frightened. He held onto Andrew like he thought Andrew would disappear if he let go.