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(Podfic) I Am Destruction

18th June 2010 (20:29)
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I wrote 'I Am Destruction' about 18 months ago, as a follow-up to 'Hiywan's Story', describing a dramatic incident in the life of the First Slayer. It's one of my favourites among my own fics, for its language and emotion. It's also pretty short - 1600 words - which made it ideal for my purpose today.

See, for unaccountable reasons a lot of people keep on asking me to make a voice post. If you're among them, this is for you. I've never done a podfic before and might never do one again so please excuse any technical errors, or let me know if it doesn't work. It's in MP4 format, and seems to work fine in my versions of both iTunes and Windows Media Player.

Title: 'I Am Destruction'
Narrated by: stormwreath
Length: 9 minutes 22 seconds.
Rating: PG for descriptions of violence.
Summary: From the earliest days, the Slayer has been the thing that monsters have nightmares about. This story explains how that all began.

To download, right-click on the image below and 'save as'. Or do whatever it is you people with those weird one-button mice do instead of right-clicking.

I am Destruction


Posted by: The One Who Isn't Chosen (gabrielleabelle)
Posted at: 18th June 2010 20:36 (UTC)


Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 18th June 2010 20:53 (UTC)

Um, oh yes I did...

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 18th June 2010 20:53 (UTC)

Didn't I?

Posted by: The One Who Isn't Chosen (gabrielleabelle)
Posted at: 18th June 2010 22:23 (UTC)


It's interesting to hear it read out loud. I've never tried out a podfic before (I don't really have the opportunity to sit around and listen to stories/programs like that). It adds a certain something to the piece, though. I'm curious now to try it out, myself...



Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 18th June 2010 22:32 (UTC)

I'm actually not a fan of podfic myself: it always seems so slow compared to reading, and you can't skip ahead, and more importantly it's difficult to go back to read (/hear) a passage again. But presumably lots of people do enjoy them, and I suppose it's great for people who are driving or taking the bus or something.

I also can't stand the sound of my own voice, normally. I kind of winced listening to this - though it got better nearer the end, I suppose as I stopped being self-conscious and just got into the narration. I did go in and edit it a bit before posting it, though - and with hindsight, I'd have done things a bit differently. (I don't know if you noticed I fluffed the pronunciation of 'resonant' - as it was I just kept going, but with hindsight I should have read the sentence again, then edited out the wrong one. Live and learn.)

I'm curious now to try it out, myself...


Posted by: The One Who Isn't Chosen (gabrielleabelle)
Posted at: 19th June 2010 00:06 (UTC)

lol! I'm fond of my own voice, and I can even tone down the Texan accent so I don't splash 'y'all' all over whatever fic I might choose to do. My main concern would be doing dialogue and having to, like, act or impersonate the characters. That'd be weird.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 19th June 2010 00:10 (UTC)

I did wonder if I should put on a silly different voice or something to do the dialogue, but decided against it... Though in the end I did put some faint background music onto Awrelye's speeches, as a special effect.

Speeding up Hiywan's speech so it sounded more high-pitched would have been a very bad idea, I think. She's a woman, not Donald Duck :-)

Posted by: The One Who Isn't Chosen (gabrielleabelle)
Posted at: 19th June 2010 01:08 (UTC)

I liked the music. It worked. :)

Posted by: candleanfeather (candleanfeather)
Posted at: 19th June 2010 13:37 (UTC)

It's nice to hear your voice, it gives flesh to the desembodied person behind the screen. You speak too fast for me to be able to really follow your story, so I concentrated on your reading. You've a good voice, I like its texture very much and the way you read. Do you have an accent (I suppose you do) and may I ask you where it is from? It's something I'm struggling to grasp. On Btvs, apart Drusilla, I couldn't make a difference between the accents of the British characters.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 19th June 2010 18:58 (UTC)


I'm surprised; like I said, I really dislike the sound of my own voice... (And yes, I have a body. I'm not just a discorporate spirit hovering here over my keyboard. ;-))

You speak too fast for me to be able to really follow your story

I've heard that British people speak faster than Americans, in general... and I can sympathise; I can understand written French pretty well but I'm completely lost if I hear someone speaking it, unless. They. Speak. Really. Slowly. (And even then it's a case of understanding one word in two instead of one in ten, while with reading I can get maybe seven words out of eight without having to look them up.)

Do you have an accent (I suppose you do) and may I ask you where it is from?

Everyone has an accent; it's just that some people's accents are dignified by the name of "Standard (Whatever Language)." ;-)

I was born in Yorkshire, and used to have a very strong Yorkshire accent, but I've lived more than half my life in London and these days my accent is much closer to Received Pronunciation. You can still hear traces of my original accent in my speech, especially in some of the vowel sounds - I say 'bath' with a short 'a' while RP speakers use a long 'a', for example. In my experience, native English speakers can tell that I'm originally "from the North" but not necessarily anything more precise - though some people do have a keener ear for accents than others. (I'm not particularly good at it.)

On 'Buffy', Giles and Wesley spoke with standard RP accents. In 'Band Candy', Giles's Ripper voice was based on Tony Head's native accent, which is North London (not Cockney, that's East London, though it's not unrelated). James Marsters based Spike's speech on the same accent (by copying Tony's voice); in S2 it's obviously fake but by later seasons he'd managed to become more natural-sounding. Juliet Landau's accent is a horrible parody of Cockney that sounds completely fake, as does Molly the Potential's accent in S7.

The British Library's website has a database of peolpe speaking with various British accents:

http://www.bl.uk/learning/langlit/sounds/text-only/england/leeds/ is a recording of an 80-year old woman who lives about 10 miles from where I grew up; that's similar to my original accent.

http://www.bl.uk/learning/langlit/sounds/text-only/minority-ethnic/bradford/ is a British Asian from the same region. His accent sounds closer to my accent now.

http://www.bl.uk/learning/langlit/sounds/text-only/england/hackney-contemporary/ is a North London accent.

Posted by: candleanfeather (candleanfeather)
Posted at: 22nd June 2010 20:16 (UTC)

Thank you for the links.That was very nice of you.
I listened to the records and was able to pick upon the differences in these accents though I wouldn't be able to recognize them outside this context. I really enjoyed the accent of the old woman of Yorkshire, it has something very savoury.

Someday if you have time, I'd like to resume this conversation because I'm curious about the linguistic history of your country, its unification or absence of.

"Everyone has an accent; it's just that some people's accents are dignified by the name of "Standard" Absolutely not, it's a well known fact in Paris that in France only provincials have (laughable) accents. :)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 22nd June 2010 22:30 (UTC)

I'm curious about the linguistic history of your country, its unification or absence of.

Well, starting at the beginning - one of the oddities of England is that the Germanic invaders imposed their own language on the country, rather than learning to speak a dialect of Latin mixed with their own words as in other ex-provinces of the Roman Empire. I don't think there's any real consensus as to why it happened, though I've seen a theory that Britannia was depopulated by the plague to a worse extent than elsewhere in the West, so the Anglo-Saxons faced less resistance.

Then, the country was unified under a single central government (the kings of Wessex) while the rest of Europe was disintegrating after Charlemagne's death. That probably helped cultural and therefore linguistic unity. But then we got conquered by the Normans, and for 300 years French was the language of the nobility. (How Anglo-Norman French differed from Parisian French isn't something I know much about.) After King John lost most of his French territories to Philippe Augustus in 1206 the royal court had to spend most of its time in England instead of Normandy and Anjou, and gradually it adopted English as its native tongue. I believe Richard II (died 1399) was the first native English-speaking king of England since 1066.

After three centuries of only being spoken by peasants, English had changed dramatically from its Anglo-Saxon roots, losing most of its inflections as well as picking up a huge amount of French loan-words. It continued to change in the later middle ages - there was something called the 'great vowel shift' which I don't know much about, but dramatically changed the way English is pronounced.

So now there isn't much linguistic variation; we have a lot of accents, but few dialects. Standard English ('received pronunciation') was originally the accent of the home counties and south Midlands, roughly the triangle between Oxford, Cambridge and London. During the 19th century, the public schools were set up to educate the children of the aristocracy and the wealthy middle classes and turn them into gentlemen, and part of the process was teaching them to speak Received Pronunciation - which is why nowadays it's as much a class accent as a regional one.

Old English (11th century):

Her Landfranc se þe wæs abbod an Kadum com to Ængla lande, se efter feawum dagum wearð arcebiscop on Kantwareberig. He wæs gehaded iiii kalendas Septembris on his agenum biscopsetle fram eahte biscopum his underðioddum; ða oþre ðe þær næron þurh ærendrakan 7 þurh gewrite atiwdon hwi hi ðær beon ne mihton.

Middle English (14th century):

At nyght was come into that hostelrye | Wel nyne and twenty in a compaignye | Of sondry folk, by aventure yfalle | In felaweshipe, and pilgrimes were they alle, | That toward Caunterbury wolden ryde.

Early Modern English (16th century):

And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by,| From this day to the ending of the world, | But we in it shall be remember'd; | We few, we happy few, we band of brothers; | For he to-day that sheds his blood with me | Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile, | This day shall gentle his condition:

it's a well known fact in Paris that in France only provincials have (laughable) accents.

I remember reading an Asterisk book or two in the original French and getting really confused by the phonetic spelling of the accents. :-) (Corsican, if I remember correctly.)

Posted by: candleanfeather (candleanfeather)
Posted at: 25th June 2010 13:55 (UTC)

Thank you for this thourough account about history of the English language.The unification of the language is later in France, in fact it's mostly the work of the Revolution and of the XIXth century.It has been done with great efficiency yet. You can still find regional languages (occitan, basque, breton, alsacien ...) and dialects but in most of the cases their speakers are reduced only to a small number now. Though there've been attempts to revive them by creating schools for the people wanting to learn them. Accents persist, but they have lost their role as social markers with some notable exceptions: the accent from the young working class living in the suburbs, mostly from foreign origins is not something good if you're looking for a job and there's also the fact that the more educated people and these from the upper class rarely speak with regional/provincial accents.

Posted by: ceciliaj (ceciliaj)
Posted at: 20th June 2010 15:12 (UTC)

I enjoyed this immensely. This fic is incredible.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 20th June 2010 20:25 (UTC)

:-) Thanks!

Posted by: general jinjur (general_jinjur)
Posted at: 24th October 2010 02:16 (UTC)


thank you for posting this!

i've been maintaining a podfic archive and i would really like to mirror and include this. what do you think?

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 24th October 2010 13:57 (UTC)

Hi - yes, I've got no problem with you including this in your archive. Let me know if you need any more information from me.


Posted by: general jinjur (general_jinjur)
Posted at: 23rd January 2011 16:51 (UTC)

thanks! it's here:


Posted by: Vantiri (vantiri)
Posted at: 12th August 2014 02:14 (UTC)
Great Idea, Sir!

Great idea, Sir! I can just see the PTSD effects on these young women! Some, possibly like Faith Lehane, get addicted to the violence, others learn to dominate their violent urges, and denote their lives to loving protection of others, still others would likely disavow any conflict, and to pacifistic... who knows! This is an extremely intreguing idea!
Added to that, it seems that she's possessed, from what she's saying, which is bizarre, since, technically, any real demon would work WITH the monsters, and not against them,,, but if it's a Good spirit- akin to what is commonly called an 'angel', then it Would likely help drive these females to do well in their work and studies- for instance.
What do you think about that idea, Sir?
Your fan,

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