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(fic) Drabble roundup #4

21st October 2007 (17:06)
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It's been a while since I posted a collection of the various drabbles I've written for open_on_sunday , so here are the last eight:

For the prompt 'Cards'; Death may be a whizz at chess (and Cripple Mr Onion), but can he play poker?

...When death is on the line

For a long moment their stares met, blue eyes and cold bony sockets...a silence broken by a sudden snort of laughter.

"Oh, you are kidding me."


"You're Death? The Death?"


"Sorry, mate. Too late. Already dead."


"Think you can take me?"


"Woah. Put down that scythe. Surely I get to play a game for my life first.? It's traditional."


“All right. And not some poncy game of chess, neither. You ever heard of five card stud?”



For the prompt 'tie', Andrew has convinced Buffy to authorise some non-standard training methods for his Slayers.

Three dimensional spatial awareness training

The rebel pilot swung the nose of his X-wing around and boosted towards the Imperial TIE fighter. He was completely confident; his deflectors were fully charged, but the TIE had no shields at all. A single burst from his quad blasters would kill it…
…except the Imperial pilot dodged his every shot with superhuman reflexes, then swung around and clung to his tail despite his frantic efforts to dodge, blasting away until his shields failed…

“Yes! Got you again!” whooped Donna. Andrew threw his joystick down in disgust. He’d have to think up a better system of handicapping the Slayers…


For the prompt 'Dominion', we go back 10,000 years to Africa and the First Slayer.


The girl who'd once been Hiywan of the Five Trees Clan crouched in the savannah grass, watching the herd. There was a straggler; old or sick, easy prey for a hunter's spear. Hiywan would have given thanks to the Earth Spirit; her family would eat, and the cycle of life would continue.

Things were different now. The sorcerers needed food. They had - ways - of enforcing obedience.

She stood up, careless of being seen, and ran forward. The herd stampeded; she was faster. The huge bull was dangerous; she was Sineya. This was her art. She was the bringer of death.

Genesis 1:26: And God said, 'Let us make man in our image, according to our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over all the wild animals of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.'


For the prompt 'Fandom'; in season 4, Willow and Buffy have to negotiate the pitfalls of being roommates.

An introduction to online fandom

"Seeya, Will. Off patrolling."

"Okay. Um - do you know when you'll be back?"

Something in Willow's voice made Buffy pause. Her friend was stretched out on her bed, laptop open. Buffy had assumed she was studying, but...

She stepped over to look at the screen, but was astonished when Willow turned fiery red and practically grabbed the computer away before reluctantly letting go.

" 'Pairing: Hermione/Luna, NC17'… what's that mean?" Her eyes moved further down the screen –

And suddenly she blushed as red as Willow and dashed for the door, squeaking "After midnight!" over her shoulder as she ran…


For the prompt 'Drive', a (tongue-in-cheek) missing scene from 'Passion'.

Restore soul from backup (Y/N)?

"So. His lordship's back. How long does it take to kill one soddin' high school teacher?"

"I've told you, me boy: killing needs artistry. I was arranging a little... surprise for her lover boy."

"Crimson traces all over the floor. Broken flowers like tears. But the words, Spike, the words - I can still hear them."

"What? Angelus, you did smash her computer, didn't you?"

"Her little glass screen thingie? Sure I did. "

"Her…? You gormless prat! Wrecking the monitor's no use, you have to smash the hard drive! Now you'll have to go back there before they realise…"


For the prompt 'hate', we go to 'Angel' late in season 5:


"You offer assistance, but your hate for me shines brighter than your drab little sun. This contradiction interests me. Explain it."

" I would have thought one of your... history would understand hate already."

"I did not trouble myself with the feelings of lesser beings until I..."

"...became one?"

"Hate was a tool. The paint on our canvas. To you it is... what?"

"If I hate you, why should I explain myself?"

"And yet you will. Why? Because I remind you of her?"

Because if I cease to hate, there will be nothing left. But all he said was,


For the prompt Space, another look at Hiywan. She may have been born a cave[wo]man, but in her heart she's an astronaut.

Before the dawn

Some nights the warm embrace of her clan feels suffocating. She rises from her furs, picks her way to the cave entrance. Takes a flint-tipped spear to guard against night-dangers and slips a wooden stake inside her wrap.

Soft wind brings the scents of the savannah to her. High above, stars swing around the sky like a thousand distant campfires. She wonders whether people live around them. Whether there's another girl standing up there, gazing down towards her across the vast empty spaces with the same formless yearning in her heart.

She wonders if we'll ever find out. Ever meet.


For the prompt 'Bars', a study in irony. Irony bars. Get it? 

Nor iron bars a cage

Never let anyone tell you what to do. Never play by the rules. Want it? Take it. Like it? Do it. If anyone objects, screw 'em. Literally or not, your choice.

Everybody's got an angle. They'll say they love you, they wanna be your friend… but they just want you to play their little games. Love's a weakness. Don't let yourself be tied down, don't let them inside: you'll only be hurt. Again. Keep moving.

Rules to live by.

So why is it only now, as the sunlight streams in through her barred cell window, that she finally feels free?




Posted by: A. (inperfectpeace)
Posted at: 21st October 2007 19:22 (UTC)
Harry Potter- Luna one in a million

These were all great! My favorites were "An introduction to online fandom" (LOL!!) and "Lessons". :)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 21st October 2007 19:52 (UTC)

Thanks! The fandom one was written the week after 'Deathly Hallows' came out, which is why it's Harry Potter femslash that Willow's reading. Not that I actually know whether that pairing makes any sense, or whether Luna was even in the earlier books that Willow would be familiar with in season 4 - all I know about Luna, in fact, was from that story you wrote. :-)

Posted by: mr_waterproof (mr_waterproof)
Posted at: 22nd October 2007 19:48 (UTC)

I especially loved Online Fandom too, as I've long believed Willow would be a big femslash fan, and Hermione/Luna would be one of her favourite pairings. Willow would identify with Hermione, while Luna could be identified as having some Tara like qualities (although there are many differences too).
Unfortunately, Luna did not appear in the books until Order of the Phoenix, which came out in June 2003. Could you re-set this story post season 7 instead?

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 22nd October 2007 20:38 (UTC)

Well, the punchline of Buffy panicking and running away in embarrassment really only works if a)she's sharing her bedroom with Willow b) She's either unaware or still getting used to Willow being gay.

Post season-7, I think she'd be more likely to give Will a knowing look and tease her about it (compare "have fun delivering the tea!" from 'The Killer in Me'). Or possibly get into a discussion of her own favourite slash pairing. :-)

Also, the story as originally envisaged had Willow in the stage where she's still trying to sort out her own feelings about her sexuality in classic Willow fashion - by doing online research. :-) Maybe that incredible pan-dimensional magical version of Google her computer has access to let her read JKR's notes before 'Order of the Phoenix' was published?

Posted by: mr_waterproof (mr_waterproof)
Posted at: 22nd October 2007 23:03 (UTC)

Or possibly get into a discussion of her own favourite slash pairing. :-)

And that would be...?

I was trying to think of who Willow could pair in a story set in 1999/2000. I believe there was a lot of Xena femslash about in them days. The trouble is that if Willow could see a Hermione/Luna fic as paralleling herself with Tara, a Xena/Gabrielle fic might be about herself and Buffy: maybe a bit too close to home in this story

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 23rd October 2007 17:58 (UTC)

And that would be...?

I honestly don't know. Buffy's pop-culture references tend to be about films and music rather than TV or books (although she's also familiar with Robert Frost's poetry and William S Burroughs), and I don't really see her as part of any big genre fandom. In season 5 she didn't even recognise a reference to Hogwarts, much to Dawn's disgust.

(I can imagine her being intrigued by what Willow talks about goes on online, and doing some investigation of her own)

Maybe she's into RPS about ice skating stars? Brian Boitano/Brian Orser?

I was trying to think of who Willow could pair in a story set in 1999/2000

Thelma and Louise? Lyta Alexander and either Delenn or Susan Ivanova?

Posted by: mr_waterproof (mr_waterproof)
Posted at: 23rd October 2007 22:21 (UTC)

Been thinking far too much about this question as usual.

Buffy: Would she be into gay slash or het? I think the reason so much fanfic is same sex is because it is meeting a demand for same sex romantic/erotic literature that isn't met anywhere else. Whereas with so much mainstream heterosexual romance about, I presume het fanfic is strictly for fangirls of a particular series or character, which Buffy isn't

The other question is, would she like angsty pairings that mirror her own romantic experiences, or prefer fluffy escapism? Maybe the later, but there is plenty of that in "Chick and English guy" films, you don't need fanfic (unless you are looking for same sex). On the other hand, maybe she laid the ground for her affair with Spike by reading fic about pairings between sworn enemies.

As for Willow, her interest in fanfic is canon: specifically Doogie Howser, M.D. fanfic when she was young. So I don't think anyone can argue with the notion that when she started "Exploring her sexuality" she would have got into femslash in a big way. (is it possible that later on she kept in touch with her bisexual side by secretly reading het?)

I don't know if any real femslash experts are following this thread, but I think the other biggies in the late 90s were Kathryn Janeway/B'Elanna Torres/Seven of Nine from Star Trek: Voyager (Goddess bless Wikipedia for giving me the means to check spellings and dates). And there was always Cagney and Lacey.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 24th October 2007 12:29 (UTC)

Buffy: Would she be into gay slash or het?

"One of these days, I'm just gonna put you two in a room and let you rassle it out. There could maybe be oil of some kind involved..." (Buffy, 'Chosen')

(Plus, have you seen 'The Long Way Home' issue 3?)

would she like angsty pairings that mirror her own romantic experiences, or prefer fluffy escapism?

Personally, I think fluffy escapism all the way. And she probably got into the whole 'pairings between sworn enemies' bit immediately after season 1 episode 7... by the time Spike came along she probably thought it was too teenage for her. :-)

As for Willow, the more I think about it, the more sure I am she'd ship Lyta with, basically, anybody. :-) They have so much in common...

Posted by: mr_waterproof (mr_waterproof)
Posted at: 24th October 2007 20:21 (UTC)

Not really an expert in Babylon 5 here but here are some other suggestions for Willow's fave femslash characters

Gabrielle from Xena
(As mentioned above)
Toshiko from Torchwood
Kaylee from Firefly (possibly paired with River?)
Jenny from the L Word
Jean Grey from X-Men (see pic)

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