Friendship Comes First: What (Good) Fanfiction Can Teach Us About the Romantic Subplot.
I love all forms of storytelling: television, books, movies, you name it. As long as it’s quality, its ripe for the picking.
It’s so easy for me to become engrossed in the lives and psychologies of fictitious characters, to care for them as though they’re people I really know. Which, on some metaphysical level, I suppose is true, but that’s a topic for another essay.
However, in the midst of all my possibly Asperger’s-fueled hyper-fixation and nerdery, there’s one inevitable aspect of seemingly every plot to which I will almost always role my eyes and click the fast-forward button: the goddamned romantic subplot.
So many times have I seen the exact same variation of romantic love between fifty homogeneous couples, and each time, I failed to see the appeal: in books, the smirking, obnoxious male love interest will woo the object of his desire through flagrant disrespect, the same toned bodies will copulate furiously on my television screens (typically at the exact same moment my parents or small siblings will walk into the room), the same vapid, flirtatious stares and generic dialogue will be exchanged.
But where’s the basis for it? Yes, these people are stressed to be attracted to one another to the point of obnoxiousness, but do they even like each other as individuals? Are they even friends? Is there any three-dimensionality to their relationship besides sizing each other up and deciding to bump uglies?
Simply and also sadly, the answer is very rarely. And so, it
seemed to me that romance was not my cup of tea, both in the
fictitious world and out of it. Or so it seemed.
Because it was then, at approximately seventeen, that I discovered
a remarkable phenomenon that would change my life forever:
Never before had I been so enraptured in the relationships of
fictional characters, and I was baffled as to why. Yes, I’ve
read a tremendous deal of fanfiction that is, in fact, book quality,
but as an avid bibliophile, I was perplexed as to why I’d never
been so captivated by the romantic endeavors of a published author as
I was by the passion-projects of writers not much older than I was.
After a lot of time, careful consideration, and the illuminating
words of some of my fellow bloggers, however, I believe I can finally
put words as to why.
1. Give your characters a narrative purpose (besides being The Love Interest.)
Do you ever wonder what inspires Supernatural fans
to tirelessly churn out fics about their favorite human-on-angel
pairing? I have, and this is someone who’s a proud proponent
of the stuff.
The sheer magnitude of free literature available, constantly repositing the
pair in all manor of situations and walks of life, is absolutely
baffling, and undeniably impressive. Indeed, some of the best works of romantic literature – and yes, I do consider fanfiction to be a form of literature – I have ever come across were starring none other than this specific pairing: from the infamous Twist and Shout (which I don’t recommend if you ever want to listen to Elvis Presley music, visit a beach, or feel joy ever again) to the charming Have Love, Will Travel (probably my personal favorite), some truly beautiful love stories have blossomed from a pairing that has never even been confirmed onscreen to have romantic connotations.
Perhaps just as baffling is the other end of the spectrum: Lisa Braeden. Lisa, for those unfamiliar, is basically posited as the love of Dean’s life, with whom he lived for a year before being forced to give up his dream of a family life and return to full-time demon busting. They’ve canonically kissed, had sex, shared a bed, and everything typically associated with an onscreen couple.
Yet comparatively no fanworks exist about them. When Lisa does appear in a fic, she is usual Castiel’s rival for Dean’s affections, or simply a hapless bystander.
Why is this? Well, a disillusioned observer might point to straight women’s apparent predilection towards fetishizing male homosexuality (I, for the record, am not straight myself; I’m a proud bisexual who, thus far, has only dated women.) I’m inclined to retort that this isn’t giving female fans nearly enough credit.
For starters, remove all context from each relationship and examine them with a critical eye: on the one hand, you have Castiel, Dean’s angelic savior from forty years in perdition. Castiel is clearly fascinated with Dean, appearing in his bedroom, somewhat suggestively (advertently or otherwise) inquiring about his dreams, watching him sleep, routinely invading his personal space, and ultimately rebelling against heaven in accordance with Dean’s wishes.
On the other hand, you have Lisa, a perfectly nice character who’s introduced as “the bendiest weekend of (Dean’s) life” and…well, that’s about it. She’s later shown as a sort of amalgamation of Dean’s subconscious desire for a mother figure and normal life, but she, as a character, remains somewhat underdeveloped and hollow.
You can’t expect fans to hold the two relationships to the same caliber and then cry internalized misogyny and fetishization of gay and bisexual men when they don’t.
The fact of the matter is, onscreen “friendships” are typically much more developed, much more three-dimensional, and much more ideal of what a truly epic romantic plot should be. A character with a clear place in the narrative and three dimensional characterization all their own will almost always be more charismatic than a character who’s introduced as exclusively The Love Interest.
This is not to say that what makes fanfiction so great is that it sexualizes or romanticizes friendship. In fact, I’m inclined to believe it’s the other way around.
Which brings me to my next point…
2. Make sure your characters are friends.
It’s a romance for the ages. A love like no other. They’re soulmates, yin and yang, a match made in the stars.
But do they enjoy each other’s company? Laugh at each other’s jokes? Take part in each other’s interests? Are they even friends?
The sad fact of the matter is, romance and erotica are, as a whole, starved for values of friendship and camaraderie.
This is something I realized only after my love of fanfiction took root, when I tried to return to my normal sources of adult entertainment (romance, erotica, and porn) and found them, by comparison, almost bafflingly lacking in warmth and camaraderie.
What I think makes fanfiction so addictive is the fact that it’s built upon the established relationships of two or more characters (the Onceler and company notwithstanding) who, typically, care for one another as friends and compatriots.
Look at some of the internet’s favorite pairings: Dean Winchester and Castiel remain a classic. Bucky Barnes and Steve Rogers are always crowd-pleasers. Kara Denvers and Lena Luthor are seeing a rise in popularity. We all know Sherlock has somewhat fallen from grace, but the union of its two main characters still retains a devoted following.
This is no accident: despite lacking onscreen confirmation, these characters have proven themselves to care for one another as more than objects of their sexual desire. They’re friends, with relationships based in loyalty and warmth that are, unfortunately, sorely lacking in typical fictional romances.
Once you get a taste of this brand of friendship-infused romance, in fanfiction or otherwise, it’s hard to go back.
This isn’t just limited to quote-unquote “fanon” couples, either: couples such as Mulder and Scully, Bones and Booth, Yuuri and Victor, and Ladybug and Chat Noir can all attribute their popularity to this strong basis in friendship, camaraderie, and mutual respect.
This is also the leading cause as to why the formerly booming 50 Shades franchise, and other arguably sexist, abusive dynamics, are struggling at the box office.
Which reminds me…
3. Make sure your characters are equals.
Unless you’re writing a Lolita-esque social commentary, it’s probably your best bet to keep your characters on fairly equal ground.
I mean this in every sense of the word, too: I have a difficult time getting invested in a romance when there’s a pretty blatant power imbalance, which oftentimes occurs due to the implicit sexism of the entertainment industry.
Disproportionately young actresses are assigned as love interests to much older men, such as Emma Watson’s twenty-something-year-old character lusting over a man almost twenty years her senior in Irrational Man.
Physically mediocre or average-looking male characters are frequently pared with stunningly beautiful women who like them because they’re “nice,” fueling the existing mentality of all self-proclaimed “nice guys” who think society owes them a hot girl.
I love Splash and the Fifth Element as much as anybody, but both films incorporate all these tropes in ample proportions, and it’s frankly ridiculous. (On the topic of Splash, however, I’m greatly looking forward to a subversion of this trope in its remake, starring Channing Tatum as the titular merman and Julianne Belle as his human love interest.)
On the other hand, you have fanfiction. I’ve read numerous essays professing that fanfiction is becoming increasingly popular due to the fact that same-sex relationships tend to be implicitly devoid of these sex-based imbalances, and I’m inclined to agree.
However, I’ve read others stating that male-male pairings tend to be so popular because male characters are typically more well-developed by writers, making it perfectly understandable that fans would be more invested in a possible romance between two characters of equal multidimensionality (see point 1) than one that is sorrowfully underdeveloped. I’m inclined to think that this theory is even more on point.
Because look at some of the successful onscreen relationships I listed prior: we root for Bones and Booth’s inevitable union the same way we swoon over slowburn fanfiction, delighting in Mulder and Scully’s banter and craving their interaction.
These are, in my opinion, some examples of straight couples done right, because they’re portrayed as friends (see the previous point), and just as importantly, as equals.
Last, but certainly not least, the male characters in both pairings are depicted as having nothing but respect for their female compatriots, depending on their intellectual know how and not being ashamed to say so.
A more contemporary example that gets this wrong? Well, not to offend any fans of the pairing, but Mon-El and Kara, a la Supergirl. Mon-El was, at the beginnings of his arc, consistently disrespectful towards Kara, putting her down and insulting her in the very same episodes in which her female compatriot – Lena Luthor – is shown vocally admiring and praising her.
Mon-El has since improved on his behavior, but the damage is done: I still have a difficult time seeing him as a likeable character, much less a suitable love interest for my beloved Kara.
These are just a few recommendations, based on the ways in which my somewhat obsessive love of transformative literature (i.e. good fanfiction) have helped me as a writer and helped me view the implicit problems with mainstream romance with a more discerning and critical eye.
Here, I could provide a counterpoint with the recurring problems I’ve noticed in fanfiction, or I could go into some recomendations for writing explicitly gay and lesbian relationships. Both of these, however, are topics worthy of another essay.
Disclaimer: I am assuming that any and all readers are trying for an enjoyable, healthy romantic subplot with equally charismatic, consenting, and likable characters. Dysfunctionality can be just as interesting from a literary standpoint, but again, this is a topic for another essay.
There will be essays like this published at least once every other week, so be sure to follow my blog and stay tuned for future writing advice and observations!
Okay, so I just binge read all thirteen chapters of Adventures of Supergirl, a comic series based on the CBS (now CW) show. And now I’m going to list little facts (semi-canon facts) for all you fan authors and artists for your shit. So here you go:
Kara lives in Hammersmith Tower, apartment 4-A.
Kara had a bully on earth during high school called Belinda-the-bully, who seemed to always beat Kara at Street Combat Six using a surprise uppercut TKO.
Also there were no video games on Krypton.
Kara has one hell of an uppercut thanks to Belinda-the-bully.
Kara has to calculate everything during a rescue. Air resistance, negative acceleration, matching the object’s speed. Like everything. Or else whiplash could kill victims or she’ll make a cater after every landing or things would crash against her as she catches them. Our girl knows how to multitask like a boss.
Kara does her calculations in Sulls, a weight measurement on Krypton. She problems converting these to pounds.
Alex is approximately 31 Sulls.
Kara isn’t that great with Earth’s physics. The Rokyn Society’s Gravitistics doesn’t line up with Newton’s laws all too well. She apparently tried to tell that to her ninth grade teacher while English wasn’t her first language.
Krypton didn’t believe in resolving conflict by physical violence. They first exhausted communication, every diplomatic option before disagreements got out of hand. So, that explains a lot about Kara’s temperament and hesitance to start a fight.
Kara talks to Clark a lot about people finding out about her identity and how it would affect the people she cares for.
Winn has a badass hijab-and-leather-jacket-wearing hacker friend named Rabiah Zinoman, who can go up against an alien who is practically a computer himself.
Did I mention her screen name is RazzleDazzle130?
Edit: She also explicitly mentions she does not date, which is typical of a devote Muslim, of course, this doesn’t apply to everyone (props for writers here?)
Speaking of screen names, Winn has several: Supergirl_In_Action252, Mufungo, and Dollm8ker (the latter being a throwback to his comic book roots).
… James apparently got turned into a turtle once? (I need a fic now!)
Kara had a college roommate named Donna, who was in love with Silence of the Lambs and would watch it every few weeks. After capturing and interrogating Fort Rozz criminals, Kara doesn’t like it that much anymore.
Kara’s father used to say, “Not my cup of Thoni tea.”
Kara learned how to control her dreams from the decades in the phantom zone. She dreamt of Kypton mostly. She used a Kryptonian dreaming technique called Tarukor for the control. She’s also so proficient in it that she went toe-to-toe with an alien known for manipulating/creating dreams.
Alex promptly calls Kara a dream warrior.
Kara, after dreaming/sleeping for decades, didn’t sleep much on earth the years following her landing. Now she mostly does it out of habit and normalcy.
Alex and Kara saw My Chemical Romance in concert. Seriously just imagine scene teens Kara and Alex though.
Kara had a weird dream about Oscar Isaac once.
Cat milks stuff for days after a Supergirl fight.
Kryptonians used sunstones as pictures. Like multi-faceted rocks with pictures on them.
Kara is very proficient in hand-to-hand combat (since she learned of the DEO), despite not learning it on Krypton. Without her powers, Kara can still kick your ass if she wanted to. She also really likes uppercuts.
Clark loves mysteries, grew up reading them and they are half the reason he became a reporter, wanting to uncover the secrets in people. They infuriate Kara, though, she just wants the world to be straightforward.
Alex doesn’t know Kryptonese.
Alex had a med school boyfriend that used to write poems about them together like “And so we fight, tooth and claw, with our backs to the wall.” That may have been the reason they broke up.
Cat apparently partied with cast of Hamilton.
Cat had lunch with Gwendoline Christie.
Hand of Krypton was its justice system’s greatest honor and heaviest responsibility. They were in service to Krypton’s future.
Kara went to Stanhope College.
College actually challenged Kara in academics her first year. Yes, Supergirl was brought low by Professor Haley’s Oceanography pop quizzes.
Kara did a huge research paper on doxing in college.
By her own admission, Kara graduated ‘top-ish’ of her class (knowing her though I headcanon that she was at least top ten).
Kara curses a lot more in Kryptonese than in English. Like a lot.
Kara learned (passable) English in a day. Our girl is a fast learner (do as you please with that information).
Midvale is in California, on the beach.
Kara can fly to about 40,000 feet before she’ll be at risk of being in space.
The DEO has at least one agent that wears hijab.
Clark says, “Truth, justice, and the American way,” Kara on the other hand would say, “Hope, help and compassion for all.”
But seriously guys, go read them. The art, dialogue, and narration is colorful and amazing.They’re really fun and since we’re in hiatus they’re good fillers before Season Two starts. They’re about 99 cents apiece and there’s only thirteen chapters.
States of undress in the Les Mis 25th Anniversary Concert
In the group watch of this concert yesterday, the important topics of Enjolras’ indecent costume and the eventual stripping of the rest of Les Amis to copy him were extensively discussed.
However, not being too familiar with either the musical adaptions or 19th century Parisian fashion, I found it hard to keep track of who was taking off their clothes when. So of course, I went through taking screenshots of each character, first at the café, then at the barricade.
Why would I feel the need to document this? Well, that’s for me to know and you to find out.
First, Enjolras. He is inexplicably and indecently dressed right from the beginning. No coat, waistcoat open, cravat tied at the bottom, kinky leather wristbands, “what are shirt buttons for?” Either he is very passionate about the coming revolution, as @spacestationtrustfund suggested, or, as @elliotenjolras offered as an explanation, he was making out with someone pretty intensely just beforehand, and they failed to help him re-dress.
This Combeferre has the fashion sense of a stressed professor anyway, but he imitates (or perhaps is helped by) Enjolras in losing one vest and opening the second, loosening his (adorable) bow-tied cravat and rolling up his (questionable) sleeves for the barricade.
Jean Prouvaire is all-too-happy to shed some clothing for the cause, and looks suitably Romantic doing so.
Feuilly naturally strips to stand in solidarity with Enjolras and his unfortunate inability to wear clothes.
This Courfeyrac is so passionate that he probably tears at his clothes until they look like this. “Revolution is of greater importance, even, than my newest silk cravat, as fashionable as it undeniably is.”
Bossuet just managed to trip several times on the way to the barricade, and that’s why he looks dishevelled.
Joly removes his cravat completely, to go one better than his compatriots. Not at all because he has secretly always suspected that wearing one probably impedes the natural flow of blood to one’s head.
Grantaire is an absolute mess at the café and remains so at the barricade, matching Enjolras throughout.
Marius tries very hard to fit in by taking off his coat and cravat, but his frilly shirt and gold waistcoat makes him look more like a posh bee than a busy revolutionary.
Bonus: As @shellcollector pointed out, Javert easily infiltrates the group by dressing up as one of them. It’s not particularly difficult to do.
So there you go. Thanks to his loyal friends, Enjolras is not the only one who dies looking as though he only had 30 seconds to get dressed that morning.
Summary: AU. Reader and Bucky Barnes are neighbors
and best friends. After yet another bad date, reader comes home to find
Bucky with his typical weekend target. They decide to make a wager about
dating, but is there more on the line than reader cares to admit?
Pairing: Bucky Barnes x reader
Word Count: 2,613
fluff, sarcasm, complete and utter denial, social drinking
A/N: This is my submission for the lovely Kait’s ( @bionic-buckyb) 5k AU Challenge. Congrats on the followers, friend! My prompt was “Can you please come over so I don’t feel so alone?”
Summary: In which a football game with all of the Avengers helps you determine who’s the better Rogers.
Pairing: Steve x Reader
Word Count: 2,212
A/N: This one is especially written for the forever beautiful @beccaanne814-blog ! Becca, my love, I hope you are having an amazing day because that’s exactly what you deserve. I’m so grateful to have you in my life and I hope you enjoy this!
“Are you sure you want to do this?”
“Are you sure you want to do this?“ You counter, lips tilting up into a smirk.
“Okay.” Steve shrugs, adjusting the sleeves of the red shirt that was made especially for this occasion. “Don’t say I didn’t warn you.”
“Y/N!” Tony yells from across the field. He has his arms crossed over his chest and his frown is visible even from this distance. “Stop fraternizing with the enemy!”
Sunshine never looked so good ‘till it was beating down on you and your brown eyes were the color of my coffee with 10 creams and 4 sugars, just the way I like my coffee when hot. Thank you for making my coffee more than just a pretty brown and giving me a reason to look for that shade of brown in everything I saw.
Those freckles upon your face, you never really liked them the way I did. I adored them, sat for hours trying to figure a way to spell “I love you” with them or even trying to find a way to piece together the constellations. Thank you for showing me freckles are more than just pigments upon the skin, showing me that they make each person unique and I guess that’s why whenever I tried to connect the dots on your face it doesn’t match up with the ones on her’s.
Your hands upon my skin always made my stomach turn but not the same way it did thinking of your hands on another girl but in the way where my stomach became a forest fire while my head was a tropical vacation, at war with what I felt for you and not being able to decide to listen to my aching heart or my mind that seemed to always wander back and linger around you, thank you for showing me that not everything causes one feeling and that it’s okay to feel good and bad. For showing me that no matter what bad life gives you, at some point it will give you good as a “congratulations, you made it.”
No one else loves the way you do, and I thank god everyday for that. Not that you loved me wrong, you just didn’t know how to. But I guess that’s okay, because you knew how to love her. And I am happy that you’re happy, even if it meant we broke each other down to the core. Thank you for showing me that I can give someone my all and be okay when they no longer want it, for showing me that I can dedicate so much time to someone and still be okay when they wake up and decide to not be around anymore.
To the girl who broke my heart, I know that you never meant to hurt me. You loved me as you knew how to, and I am grateful for the good that came. Thank you for hurting me, I will grow from this. You taught me that even in all the bad, there’s still good. I no longer sit at home waiting on anyone, and I no longer will give out a million second chances. Thank you for showing me that people will promise you so much good and still go against that. I don’t need much, but I needed you in this lifetime. So thank you, for all you have done and what you have not done.
“Thank you” to the girl who broke me and whom I broke in return
You and have Jughead have been dating for a while when suddenly he becomes distant, and you discover it’s for more than one reason. This takes place around the time Jughead is living under the stairs. Based on the song by Dodie Clark
Warnings: so many emotions
Word count: 1,980
A/N: I really like building fics off of songs, so I might continue to do it. I wanted this one to be a bit more realistic, so it kind of follows the events of 1 x 07, just with the reader added in. I really tried to make it match the feeling of the song. I wouldn’t say no to any Jughead requests, just send me an ask!
what a strange being you are
god knows where i would be
if you hadn’t found me
sitting all alone in the dark
You were always the girl that was early, always the girl waiting for her friends to arrive so you could walk with them in the hallways. Archie, Veronica, Betty, and your boyfriend Jughead were your core group of friends. In fact, they seemed to be your only friends.
It was approaching your one year anniversary with Jughead, actually, and it’s taken you by surprise because time seems to pass faster here, especially with a boy you’ve only fallen deeper in love with every single day. It’s been almost one whole year since you moved to Riverdale and became absolutely smitten with the boy in the beanie. It only took him a week to ask you out, though, going from an enigma to your boyfriend in the span of a few days.
It was a fairy tale come to life, at least that’s what it seemed like to you. The dark brooding boy soon opened up to you about everything, and you did the same, forming a relationship built on trust. There were late night movies, walks down the river, sly glances and touches when with the group, cute nicknames, and wearing his beanie whenever you weren’t in public. Everyone knew you guys as a couple, “(Y/N) and Jughead against the world” they would say.
That all seemed to come to a crashing halt about about a month ago. You had noticed him becoming distant, drawing away from you at Pop’s and declining plans to hang out. It was like you barely existed in his world anymore, he seemed to take more of an interest in solving the murder now a days, and you didn’t seem to understand why. In turn, because you haven’t spoken that much you haven’t had the chance to tell him your parents were getting a divorce, and that you and your baby brother were going to live in separate households.
The day before your one year anniversary you walk into school promptly an hour before everyone else. You were always the girl that was early, always the girl that was waiting.
It was peaceful, in a sense. No one roaming the halls to crash into, the classrooms looking like ghost towns as you pass each one making your way to the stairwell at the end of the hall. You haven’t taken this path in a long time, and you’ve nearly forgotten what this intersection is like when it’s not packed with students.
You stop to glance into one of the rooms when there’s a sudden creak of hinges behind you. You turn around to see no one else but Jughead, hair tangled and old worn clothes on. He had a towel in his hand along with a toothbrush and toothpaste.
“Jug? What are you doing here?” you ask, trying to piece together the puzzle right before your eyes. In this moment your boyfriend seemed to transform right back into that enigma he had been when you first met.
“Making use of the schools state-of-the-art-facilities…” he replies unconvincingly, unable to make eye contact.
“Jug…” you make your way towards him, and he doesn’t object when you move him aside. He was living like Harry Potter, a boy under the staircase. There was a make shift cot with some of his shirts and his backpack, only the bare essentials.
“Have you been living here?” you ask. The question wasn’t accusatory, but filled with hurt that your boyfriend hadn’t felt like he could come to you about this. He knew that both of your parents loved him, he knew they would take him in, so why hadn’t he talked to you about it?
“Please don’t tell anyone, (Y/N), please.” he pleads, pulling you out of the closet gently by the arm, looking into your eyes.
“Tell? I wouldn’t tell, Jug.” I assure him, pulling him into a hug. He wraps his arms around me and for some reason I feel as if he needs this moment more than me. I pull away and look him in the eyes, “but why didn’t you tell me?” I ask, daring him to tell me something wasn’t going on.
“It’s not your burden to bare.” he says, “walk me to the showers?”
“Jug, you’re my boyfriend, you could have stayed with me.” I tell him, saying the words we both knew out loud.
He takes my hand and begins pulling me down the hallway towards the boys locker rooms in the gym.
“And that’s the exact reason I didn’t tell you.” he says, “I don’t want you to feel responsible for me.”
You reach the showers and lean in to give him a light peck on the lips before he disappears inside. You realize that if you hadn’t shown up to school early, or been by the staircase, you never would have found out. Jughead wouldn’t have told you.
While he’s in the shower, you wander back down the hall to the closet under the stairs. You open and close the door, letting the darkness fall around you as you sit on his mattress.
It’s only when you feel the dampness on your cheeks that you realize you’ve started crying. You grab a hold of one of his sweatshirts and pull it close, crumpling it in your arms to get the most of his scent. You haven’t realized how much you’ve missed his scent, missed him telling you everything, no matter how bad it was.
The door opens sooner than expected and Jughead is staring down at you, now in his jeans and t-shirt.
“I’m going to need that back.” he says with a small smirk, not noticing your tear stained cheeks. You try to avoid sniffling, but whatever made you start to cry hasn’t let you stop.
He ruffles his hair in the makeshift mirror before finally taking notice, and as soon as he does his arms are around you, holding you close. His arms wrap around your waist, pulling you close. Your head rests on his chest as he draws circles with his thumb on your arm.
“Forsythe Pendleton Jones the third,” you scold, looking up at him. All of your resolve melts as you see him looking back at you, “I’ve missed you.” you whisper.
“I’ve missed you too, princess.” he says. He holds you there until the school bell rings.
what the hell would i be without you?
brave face talk so lightly, hide the truth
“Call my dad.” he says as he passes you, Archie and Betty in the hallway later that day.
“Of course.” you and Betty respond at the same time.
You and your friends make their way down to the station not soon after. You’ve tried his dad’s cell at least half a dozen times, and his home phone is going straight to voicemail. You’re the first one into see Jug when you get there.
“I didn’t do it, you have to believe me.” he says as soon as you walk in. His hands are clasped tightly together on the desk. His voice is rigid yet calm, and you can tell that he’s doing everything he can to maintain his composure.
“Of course I believe you, Jug. All the evidence they have is circumstantial.” you say, reaching your hands out to grasp his. You can see the release of tension almost immediately on contact. He lets out a sigh and looks up at you with lost eyes.
“Is my dad here yet?” he asks. He seems desperate, grasping at the idea that his father may have actually showed up for once. If there was one thing that hadn’t changed in the past month, it was how Jug’s father was absolute shit at being a dad.
“Archie’s dad is here with him, so is Betty.” you break the news, intertwining your fingers with his. He looks down and nods, not saying anything.
Not soon after, Jughead is released, thanks to Archie’s dad. You walk out of the station hand in hand with him, when you see his father walking up towards you.
In a blink of an eye Jughead has released your hand and is facing off with his father. “He’s my son-” you hear among the chaos, “let me give them a piece of my mind-” You have to take a deep breath and refrain yourself from telling off his dad in front of everyone. Everything stops as Jughead looks his father dead in the eyes, and then back to you. You stand next to him, intertwining your fingers with his. Jug pulls you away before anything else can be said, leading you towards your house.
He doesn’t say a word all the way there, but you can feel his hand shaking in yours, his other hand going to his eyes every few minutes to wipe away what you could only expect were tears.
“Jug-” you begin, but he stops you with a kiss. It was soft and gentle, with all of the emotion he had been holding in for the past month suddenly placed upon your lips. You let the moment pass in silence, and when he releases your lips you notice his eyes have become red and slightly puffy.
You envelope him in a hug, wrapping your arms around his neck and pulling him close, his head tucked into the crook of your neck. He’s shaking against you, so you just hold him. You would hold him until the world ends, even if it was falling apart around you.
You silently pull him inside, walking up the stairs to your bedroom.
You lay down next to each other, falling into position as if it was the most natural thing in the world. Your head on his chest, his hands on your back drawing the circles you love so much. His eyes aren’t as red anymore. You look up to him and give him a small peck on the lips.
“Don’t leave me.” he whispers against your lips.
“Why would I ever do that?” you ask, smiling softly.
“Because I’ve been lying to you this entire time.” he says, holding you so tight because he feels that if he lets go he might lose you forever.
“I don’t care, Jug. You’re here now, and I’m not going anywhere.” you tell him, reassuring that you aren’t planning on moving any time soon.
i can finally see you’re as fucked up as me
so how do we win?
Jughead spent the night into your one year anniversary. You couldn’t send him back to the school, and he certainly didn’t seem in a rush to get back to the house. You hadn’t realized how deep his demons had gotten in the past month, and now that you had you weren’t going to let them get any deeper.
“Where were your parents last night?” he asks as you lay there in the morning, a bundle of limbs and the clothes from the night before. His beanie next to him on the pillow, his hair out and wild. His hair without his beanie was so much better, you decided.
“I guess we both haven’t told each other things.” you admit, “they’re getting a divorce. It’s been pretty bad.” you snuggle in closer, trying to block out the rest of the world.
“Now why didn’t you tell me?” he asks.
“Don’t quote me back to me,” you chuckle, “you seemed pre-occupied, with the murder and everything. Your novel.”
“(Y/N),” he says, shifting the position so that you’re looking in his eyes, “Nothing could ever be more important than you. Ever. From here on out. I promise.” he says firmly, gripping you tight.
“I promise, Jug.” You repeated, placing a kiss on his lips, cementing that promise for not only your first year, but many years to come.
Anxiety was curled up on the couch in the common room listening to music. He was still processing the events of the day, being changed so much. He smiled a little and patted his bangs.
At least he had them back.
Anxiety was suddenly made aware of the three figures standing in the doorway, staring at him. They were smiling.
He lifted his headphones from his ears and dropped them around his neck, waiting for one of them to say something.
“So…,” Roman started “You were pretty adorable as Talyn, hm?”
“No. No, I’m done with shape-shifting right now.” Anxiety held his hands up defensively.
“Ooh! How about Terrance?” Patton clapped his hands.
“Joan?” Logan asked.
“Okay, but you have to admit Valerie is fun!” Roman grinned.
“No! No shapeshifting!” Anxiety pushed back into the couch as the others approached, “No! Get back! I’m no-”
Anxiety stopped short, realizing his voice had changed. He looked down and recognized Joan’s outfit.
“Awe! Joan really suits you! And that eyeshadow!” Patton squealed.
“I must admit that I am inclined to agree.” Logan said, adjusting his glasses.
“I said no! How hard is that to understand!?” Anxiety demanded, standing up. He was now shorter than the others which only elicited more coos of endearment.
“Oh, alright! Besides, I preferred you at Talyn!” Roman said, flicking his wrist to change Anxiety’s form again.
Anxiety felt a wave of nausea, and panic bubbling in his gut. No, not his gut. This isn’t his body. This isn’t him. Who was he? Not this.
“G-guys. Stop.” He choked.
“Anxiety is right, afterall Valerie was a much better fit.” Logic smirked, changing Anxiety again at the nod of his head
No. Nononononono. What’s going on?
They’re changing your form.
Because they like you better this way.
Not the regular way?
No, that version disgusts them. You disgust them.
I disgust them. Why else would they change me?
Now you’re getting it.
Anxiety tried to shove Logan aside to get to his room, to get away, but he was considerable smaller now. He was no longer any match to Logan.
“Guys! We’re forgetting Terrence!” Roman said excitedly, changing Anxiety again.
Anxiety couldn’t move. He couldn’t breathe. He had to sit down.
“Now? But they’re watching.
You’re going to faint.
No. No, I can make it.” Anxiety mumbled to himself, completely unaware he was speaking out loud now.
“Make it where?” Logan asked.
“I can’t, I can’t, I can’t, I can’t-” Anxiety tried to move by again, but Roman grabbed his wrists.
“DON’T TOUCH ME!” Anxiety yelled and ripped his arms away. “Me? But not me. I’m not me. Who am I? Wh-who am I? Don’t touch me. This isn’t me. Who is this?” Anxiety continued to ramble as his eyes began to glaze over. He sank to the floor and put his head in his hands, mumbling to himself.
“What’s happening!?” Roman yelled worriedly, and flinched when Anxiety jumped, surprised by the sounds as if he had forgotten he wasn’t alone. Anxiety continued mumbling to himself like he hadn’t been interrupted, but now he was rocking.
“We set off a panic attack!” Logan tried to state calmly, but the panic was clinging to his words. “We need to calm him down!”
“How?!” Roman yelled again, pacing.
“Change him back!” Patton yelled, but was already doing it himself.
Anxiety felt a wave of familiarity. But why was it familiar? What’s happening?
He looked down
“…me?” he whispered.
“Yes! Yes, it’s you Anxiety!” Patton exclaimed dropping to the floor and after his breathing calmed Patton tried to pull Anxiety into a hug.
“Don’t touch me!” Anxiety snapped “It’s bad enough you don’t like me the way I am, you don’t also have to pity me!”
He tried to stand and storm off to his room, but ended up stumbling and crashing into Roman, who reacted by immediately steadying him.
“Let go of me.” Anxiety snarled, and pushed off of Roman’s chest.
Roman let go and Anxiety ran to his bedroom, trying to ignore the pricks of tears in his eyes.
He knew that they hated him. He just didn’t know the extent of it.
Hello my dearest firiend. I have a special request for you, and knowing you I think you're going to love it. How about Harry's album tracklist as Larry fics we should read? How fun. A.
Wow, it was really harder than what I though It would be !
- Meet Me In The Hallway :
Sun-kissed Hurricane, Perfect Storm::Harry is the quiet kid in the back of his statistics class who
writes a lot and dreams about Louis’ cheekbones . Louis needs a
statistics tutor ASAP before he flunks and the quiet kid in the back of
the class seems like a good choice. Harry wants to help Louis however he
can and Louis wants to see how much he can make Harry blush. (7k)
- Sign Of The Times :
things have gotten closer to the sun :it’s strange, making the choice to face his past—it
almost feels like he’s heading for the sun straight on, like he’s
screaming come on and burn me, i deserve it.when a solar flare is
announced to end the world in twelve days, harry reunites with the
people that he used to know better than the back of his own hand. (49k, read the tags/notes before)
- Carolina :
The Sound of Your Voice From Far Away It’d be perfect, he convinces himself. Things with Lou are –
well. They’re the way they are, and there’s no point dwelling on why
it’s got that way. But he thinks this would help – not fix them,
because they’re not broken. They don’t need to be put back together, they’re just. Out of sync, maybe. It would help.
He thinks it would, anyway, if they could just be the two of them
again, to be alone together with no outside influences pressing
claustrophobically in on them, just for a bit. And driving down an empty
highway with nothing else but Louis beside him is the best way to do
that that he can imagine.Or, after the U.S. leg of the Take
Me Home tour, Harry and Louis drive from L.A. to NYC. They figure some
things out, like how to deal with the distance that’s been growing
between them. (39k)
-Two Ghosts :
Something Strange : (…) Or, Harry and Louis are ghosts who are intent on making Liam suffer. (7k)
- Sweet Creature :
Or: Louis lives in a small, desert town in the middle of nowhere Texas,
yet a strange visitor manages to find Louis among the stars.
- Only Angel :
Cupid’s Chokehold : Louis is a Cupid who tries to match up Niall and Harry. It doesn’t work out as planned.
- Kiwi :
sans the surface: harry likes beautiful things; louis is starshine. new zealand isn’t so bad. a fwb! and ski trip!au "each
trip harry goes on teaches him to behold beauty more carefully, and he
thinks that’s why he’s struggling so much; his eyes can’t decide whether
he wants to look at the town outside his window or the boy pressed too
close to him in the tight seating of the car. he feels like this problem
might become reoccurring, and he’s glad that along with beholding
beauty he can also tell when he’s completely fucked. ” (31k)
- Ever Since New-York :
These Constant Stars
: Louis’ career has nowhere to go but up. He’s living at the height of
New York City on the precipice of an epic promotion. Life is good and
only getting better. And then one day, things turn disastrous.This is a story about life, death, and punk rockers turned guardian angels. (31k)
- Woman :
Harry’s speechless. Apollo’s just revealed he has a thing for
himself specifically, and it’s the most connected to his Greek mythology
class that he’s ever felt. How does one react when gods reveal such a
thing? Do they bow? Do they flirt back? Do they just drop to their knees
in awe? He’s not sure, but he can only do his best with what he’s
given, which is currently a wet, blushing, naked boy gripping his towel
with all his might while poetically side-eyeing Harry’s next move. or
(Gemma brings Louis home for Thanksgiving, and Hot Harry is the last
thing he expected.)
- From The Dining Table :
all the lights are full of colour: (…) Or, Harry and Louis are separated, but for the sake of
their two sons, they choose to spend Christmas together. It may just
lead to a Christmas miracle. (26k)
A world with soulmate tattoos that
evolve based on your actions, affecting your compatibility with your soulmate.
you do something that makes you at odds with your soulmate, the tattoo becomes
fainter – do it too often and the mark might fade entirely and change into
something (someone) else. When you do something that makes you more compatible
with your soulmate, the mark becomes bolder and darker, more permanent.
• You’re a low-level thug from one of
the most notorious drug cartels. You do your best to quit and live a more
honest life when you discover that your soulmate is that sweet, kind florist
from the next block. Imagine your horror when your mark becomes fainter with
each good deed you do, disappearing entirely when you manage to free yourself
from the cartel, albeit in exchange for grave injuries. Imagine your horror
when the boss himself hunts you down and executes you – because there’s no such
thing as quitting in your group. Imagine your horror when you discover that the
boss and the florist are the same person.
• You’re an undercover cop who hasn’t
met your soulmate yet. You’re fine with not meeting them ever, you’re content with
your life. Imagine your horror when you realize that your soulmate is your next
target – a young CEO suspected of every possible crime under the same,
brandishing his company as the front for some illegal mobster operations.
Imagine your horror when your tattoo becomes bolder, darker, with each report
to the higher-ups, with each evidence you find against your soulmate. Imagine
your horror when the tattoo starts to burn with permanence the moment you
arrest your soulmate.
• You’re one of the lucky ones – you grew
up with your soulmate. You’re one of the unlucky ones – your soulmate is your
• You’re one of the rare, chosen ones
– your tattoo has been burned in permanence for as long you can remember. You’re
lucky, they all say, because no matter what you do, your soulmate is yours for
life. You spend years waiting for your mate – over each unlucky thing that
befalls you, the loss of your family, your failure to complete your education
due to poverty. You spend years more cursing the supposedly-lucky tattoo that
seems to attract all the misfortune your way. You’re past your prime with aching
joints and brittle bones. Your heart stops one day and you never meet your
• You embrace your soulmate with joy –
and within your first touch, both of your tattoos burn with permanence. You two
are the envy of every person you meet. Your mate proposes that you test the
limits of your bond. It starts slow – insulting your mate’s closest friends. It
soon escalates and soon, your mate is setting fire to your parents’ retirement
home and your tattoos remain vivid and solid.
• You grow up with your soulmate –
they’re your neighbor, classmate, best friend. Both of your tattoos don’t
change – doesn’t become faint even when you drunkenly make out with your
soulmate’s best friend, doesn’t become more vivid when you propose marriage. You’re
married for ten years – and as you prepare breakfast in bed to surprise them
for your tenth anniversary, you realize that the tattoo on your hand is
suddenly gone without trace.
• Your tattoo changes every day. Everyone who
sees it – and it’s right on your forehead, like some kind of homing signal –
thinks you’re either an unstable freak or some kind of slut. You find someone
who befriends you and is kind to you and moves in with you and loves you
despite society thinking that you don’t deserve them. Your tattoo continues to
change every day.
• Imagine Chuuya’s tattoo growing
darker and more vivid each time Dazai fucks his life over, while Dazai’s remain
faint the entire time.
• Imagine Judar and Hakuryuu having
matching permanent tattoos – but Hakuryuu is in denial so he tries to push Judar
away. The tattoo remains permanent.
• Imagine Akutagawa being horrified
at how each and every one of his attempts to be mean to Atsushi only makes
their matching tattoos more permanent.
• Imagine Yuuri being torn between
worry and contentment that Victor’s tattoo remains shimmery-faint. Because on
one hand, why are their tattoos faint?! On another hand, at least the tattoo
matches Victor’s nice skin…
• Imagine Katsuki and Midoriya having
matching permanent tattoos since they’ve met each other. Katsuki enjoys how
even as he bullies his Deku, the tattoo proclaim them as the best possible match…
• Imagine Will being SO DONE because
no matter what he does – try to kill Hannibal, try to flirt with Hannibal,
walking his dogs, giving out lectures – his tattoo only becomes darker each
In my fanon canon (the canon of my fanon) I believe Helena Wayne would be the last child and Bruce would have met his MATCH in stubbornness.
Why do I say this? Well, it may have something to do with three year old Helena staging a protest against naps. She disagrees with them, and thus performs a sit-in.
Bruce tries to convince her to stick with routine…until Selina joins the sit-in.
“What? I was born a rebel. Here, baby, I made a sign. Stick it to the man!”
“Thank you, mommy!”
The older siblings would eventually get home and join the protest, all sitting in the hallway outside her bedroom. Tim makes up chants and rallying cries. Barbara pretends to be a news anchor interviewing Helena for ‘Newz 4 Tots.’ Dick insists on an autograph and Helena draws a butterfly on the back of a receipt. Damian pretends to be a lawyer and 'argues’ with Bruce, shouting “The U.S. Constitution!” each and every time Bruce asks “Who said you could do this?” Jason insists on a speech from their fearless leader, and Cassandra sets up all the stuffed animals to be Helena’s audience.
There’s a roar of applause when Bruce relents and they all shake the toddler’s hand in congratulations. Helena and the pets parade around the house in victory.
Besides being a fun day, Helena has won the right to refuse naps and grows up to be a lawyer.