aurilly: (desmond numbers)
[personal profile] aurilly
Thanks so much for offering one of these ships! My letters are too long because I get so excited, but please don't feel pressured to stick to the prompts, or think I'm looking for a bunch of things I mentioned to be included. You can twist a prompt around, or use just a bit of one, or ignore the prompts entirely and try to include one of the general likes in your own idea. These pairings are all rare enough that I'll be thrilled with pretty much anything you're having fun writing.

Things I Love
Devoted Odd Couples: having one another’s backs; enjoying one another's company; laughing at one another; fond exasperation; quietly self-sacrificial gestures; unexpected reunions; characters with wildly different speech patterns
Earning Your Happy Ending: getting over some of your baggage; finding home where you least expect it; angst with a hopeful ending
Forced or Repeated Proximity: forced to share a room/bed; captured or stranded together; bondage in non-sexual, plot-related scenarios; Groundhog Day-style time loops
Adventures & Journeys: exploring unknown territory; daring rescues or escapes; trains; ships; hotels; realm-hopping; vacations gone awry
Competence & Resourcefulness: complementary skill sets; badassery; clever ruses; laughing in the face of danger or absurdity; the pen is mightier than the sword
Dorks Doing It: first times; slightly awkward but satisfying sex where everyone's having fun (and maybe laughing a bit); exploring and learning one another; passionate, sloppy makeouts
Alternate "I Love You"s: I almost never like "I love you"s, but I adore when characters demonstrate affection through actions or other words
Crossover-Related: fish out of water; magic in one canon originates from another; people trying to understand elements of the other canon through the lens of their own; assume that characters have a past together and reunite in the present to solve a problem; coming up with logical but incorrect theories before discovering the truth

No, Thanks
• the afterlife; bleak endings; embarrassment/humiliation
• alternate setting AUs and fusions (but wild canon divergences are totally welcome! as long as you keep the general setting and character backstories, I don't care how much of the canon plot you ignore or change)
• romantic pairings other than the ones specifically requested (and only one requested pairing per fic, please)
Sex & Relationship-Related: noncon/dubcon; soulmates; Dom/sub dynamics; adultery; love triangles; OT3s; pregnancy & kids; pure fluff; pining that drags on because of low self-esteem or idiocy; non-canonical pet names or terms of endearment; fixed top/bottom dynamics; underage
Writing Things: 1st & 2nd person POV; phonetically spelled dialogue
Crossover-Related: stories where the two main characters never find out about one another's backgrounds or canons (ie. please don't end it with either one thinking the other is just some normal person!); non-canonical fourth wall breakage; tragic, Steve/Peggy-style age mismatches; crossovers of more than two canons at a time

General Notes
• I like requested characters to figure out and deal with stuff for themselves (ex. realizing their feelings are requited, taking a risk with a declaration or romantic gesture, etc.), without yentas, shovel talks, or pseudo-therapist friends giving them the answers.

• I like fics where people talk and do new things, so no missing scenes, pure porn, or introspective character studies, please. Starting in media-res is always fine. You can even skip past the meet-cute, if you want, and start it once they're already acquainted. Even for realm-hopping, I'm cool starting with "Woah, where am I?" If you want to explain how they got there, too, that’s great, but what I really care about is seeing characters do stuff together and bond after they've met.

Friends-to-Lovers: I love multiple approaches. For example: 1) Where they realize they have more than platonic feelings, or have been lightly crushing for a while, and resolving that UST. 2) Start the story after the first kiss/declaration, setting it during the days or weeks that follow. The relationship does change; it isn’t simply friends + sex. Working through that transition and learning new things about one another—both wonderful and irritating—that didn't come up before. 3) Friends with benefits or 'sex before feelings' that becomes more serious during the story.

Sex Scenes: In case you're interested, I have lists of things I like here in the first three paragraphs, but there's no reason to read it. This letter's long enough, the preferences aren't that strongly held, and I like PG-13 makeouts just as much.


PG Wodehouse
Pairing: Psmith/Mike

I'd love a friends-to-lovers story that happens alongside some kind of adventure or slice of life exploration, with Psmith being his clever, eccentric, weirdly heroic self and Mike being his delightfully normal self. What about drawing room espionage, a Scooby Doo-style mystery, or stranded on a desert island? A Psmithian take on some aspect of college life? Study abroad while at Cambridge? A wild night out during the bank days and its ramifications? Psmith in the soup and Mike has to save him, instead of the other way around? A briefly angsty rift that helps you dig into their friendship/lives before it gets happily resolved?

For some more out-there prompts... What about Marquez-style magical realism, where magic or folkloric elements are presented as ordinary in the otherwise canonical setting? Is the Wodehouse world like the Great Britain of Susanna Clarke, 100 years later? One (or both?) in a Groundhog Day loop? In Narnia?

Psmith is my favorite character of all time, and they are my epically devoted odd couple par excellence. Every time Psmith throws himself on his sword for Mike makes me cry in a way that I don’t think Wodehouse books are supposed to make you cry. I love how Mike holds his own with Psmith, and how he rolls his eyes but quietly loves him just as much. There’s so much they feel but don’t say, even with Psmith’s incessant talking; in what other ways can those feelings come out? Do they know any of the Drones chappies? Does Psmith even have other friends? If so, what's he like with them vs Mike? If not...? Something that addresses how others view their dynamic could be a fun element to include.

Who is the forward one here, or do they bumble equally in their own ways? I like the idea that romance with Mike is the one area where Psmith might be slightly shy or awkward or confusing or clueless or… something. Does he try to hide his nerves/inexperience? Or not? Maybe he actually is smooth, but that’s the wrong approach with Mike? Any take would be fascinating!

It would necessarily have to be a secret relationship, per the time period. However, if you could background the social issues and angst about that, I’d appreciate it, because while a little longing is nice, I’d like something in the generally upbeat spirit of the books, without un-Wodhousian anguish or angsty coming outs or internalized homophobia. Please set the story before they met their wives, and/or pretend they never did.

'Mike & Psmith' and 'Psmith In the City' are both free on Gutenberg and the Kindle store. 'Psmith, Journalist' and 'Leave It to Psmith' are not necessary for this request, since Mike barely appears (but Chapter 3 and the epilogue of 'Psmith, Journalist' are pretty shippy and can be enjoyed without any context).


Lymond Chronicles - Dorothy Dunnett
Pairing: Christian Stewart/Francis Crawford

I'd like a canon divergence AU about Francis and Christian being happy and whole together after the first book. What if they'd gotten the formal introduction they wished for? Adventures together in the time between the first and second books? Or pretend the rest of the books didn't happen; what kinds of hyper-competent hijinks would they have gotten up to? The books skipped over the first year of Francis's reinstatement into Scottish high society; what would that have been like with Christian at his side? How would their friends and family react to them as a couple? Their meetings in the book were always so (necessarily) isolated; what about a social event to explore how they, as a unit, might interact with the ensemble? Are they capable of settling into normal life, or would they quickly give up and run away for more adventures? Undercover as a couple? Arranged marriage or marriage of convenience that turns real? Throwing some magical realism into the canon?

The first book is far and away my favorite. Francis is so much more FUN in The Game of Kings—more random poetry and foreign quotes and clever pranks and self-satisfied snark and lucid drunkenness. And they have so much fun together, despite all the angst. I love their secret visits and correspondence and music. I love the way they conspire so dangerously, but at the same time, she's the only person he seems to truly relax around. I love how her blindness never stops her from being ridiculously capable. I love the way he understands exactly how she wants to be treated, and quietly helps her get what she wants out of life. I love their equal amounts of self-sacrificing love for one another, and the way she always has his number, even when he doesn't know it.

I love all the characters and dynamics from the first book, so anyone else you want can appear. I think Sybilla shipped it (Agnes and little Mary probably did, too); while I don't like matchmaking, I do enjoy trope subversions where people try to set them up, not realizing the people are already secretly dating. I really like Tom; instead of bashing or hurting him, please pretend their engagement amicably fell apart, or else never existed. I don't need a whole explanation for how Christian is still alive; I'm happy to assume her wounds weren't that bad and she made a full and quick recovery so you can start the story post-Game of Kings.


Narnia (Emeth/Tirian)
**General Narnia Stuff:
— For this and the crossover pairings below, I'm only interested in canon divergences that let people be together in real life and that let me assume they’ll continue to live after the end of the story. They could work together to keep the world from ending, or you could pretend the majority of The Last Battle’s plot never happened and give them completely different adventures.
— There are so many canon timeline shenanigans that I'll roll with any handwavey canon divergence or timeline collision you need to make it work, no explanation needed. For example, I'm fine excising Jill and Eustace’s presence in The Last Battle, either to pretend away the whole end of days plotline, or to pretend Tirian's reign lines up with the present-day on Earth.
— I adore Narnian world-building—digging into the magical concepts that were introduced, thinking about the politics of both the different countries and how Narnia functions with so many types of citizens, and also playing with the themes of lore and legend. I love Narnia as a real, complex place, with creatures and magic that aren't always neat and cheerful. Go wild! I love all the Narnia characters, so anyone is welcome in the background; minor OCs are fine, too.

Emeth/Tirian:
I love Tirian SO MUCH. He has such human flaws, and he started off as a hot mess of a king, but he’s such a wonderful guy, and quite resourceful and clever when you rouse him out of his decadence. And Emeth should win a prize for the level of admiration and affection he was able to inspire in so few pages. I loved the conflict he faced between his reason, his duty, his devotion, and his desire to prove himself.

I think they’re perfect for one another—brave, noble warriors who could come to respect and love one another despite their differences. I’m a sucker for enemies to lovers, culture clashes, secret forbidden love across enemy lines, brothers in arms, agent falls for mark... I also have a love of language and contrasting speech patterns; the differences between Tirian and Emeth's versions of courtly perfection are catnip to me.

I love stories that pretend people met before, and that show how this change affects the later plot. We know Tirian has been to Calormen. Was it an official diplomatic trip, or did he use the tanning oil to go incognito, either for fun on the town or for espionage? How did he and Emeth meet and what did they get up to together? Did Emeth know who Tirian was, or was it identity porn? If the latter, how and when does he find out, and what’s his reaction? You could include the flashbacks, or you could assume the backstory and start the story when they meet again later on—either way!

Or maybe they first meet in Narnia while Emeth is undercover as a merchant, and their love changes the course of the story. Or maybe the fic starts after the war (no apocalypse! just a regular war!) and they meet and fall in love in the hostile détente? Or maybe it's a story about how they join forces to fight a common enemy and fall in love while doing that?

Or yet another angle… the scene where Tirian half goes to our world is one of my favorites in the entire series. What if he and Emeth went for real? What if the stable was a portal to another realm (either ours or a different one), not the afterlife? Or screw the stable... is the lamppost still around? Whatever! Or what if, instead of a dimension-portal, it was a time travel portal, and they meet characters from previous books while completing some kind of quest together? Or Tirian in a Groundhog Day loop in which he slowly learns how to be a better king, with Emeth's help?

Do the two countries have different views about same-sex romance? It doesn't have to be "Calormen=repressed, Narnia=free love" (though it could); maybe Calormen has a complicated Ancient Greek-style undercurrent, or Narnia's never shaken its Victorian influences. Or some other approach? Or don't even tackle that at all; it's not a big deal.


Tirian/Bucky Barnes, Rilian/Bucky Barnes (Narnia/MCU)
Rilian/Bucky:
There are many obvious parallels, what with the brainwashing and trauma chairs and being programmed to kill your friends, and the bad people telling you you're crazy during the rare moments when you're actually lucid, and being lost for years... They're both so likable but had such awful things happen to them. What adventures do they have together? How do they get to making out?

Getting the kingdom in order now that Rilian's back? There would be a lot for him to deal with, both politically and personally, and maybe Bucky's common sense outsider perspective could help. Bucky being all "what the hell?" about talking owls and fauns and whatnot. Maybe Hydra/SHIELD during an experiment accidentally sent Bucky to Narnia, where he is at least temporarily cured. Or Jane finally made her bridge and he was the test subject. Maybe the Convergence sends Bucky to Narnia. Or maybe the Lady of the Green Kirtle gets to him, too, and they're both brainwashed together. You could even ignore the parallels, and have Bucky fall off the train and into Rilian's reign, without Winter Soldier stuff ever happening to him.

Or what about Rilian in our world? Does the Lady send him here to get something magic? Would Hydra get to him? Rilian using his world's knowledge to come up with the solution to a canon MCU problem? Does his star blood make him special in some way? Can Rilian save Bucky from his brainwashing? Maybe he takes Bucky back to Narnia to keep him safe, and when he/they returns, it's the present day here? IDK. Or maybe they met before one of them got brainwashed, and years later when they meet again the other doesn't remember him (lots of angst that gets hopefully resolved by the end).

Tirian/Bucky:
This is shorter, not because I want it any less (I want it so much!), but because much of what I said in the Tirian/Emeth and Bucky/Rilian sections can be applied to Tirian/Bucky. The damaged Brooklyn boy and courtly Narnian king as an odd couple of fearsome warriors who come to understand and love each other. Fish out of water. Tirian starting out as a disaster of a king but his time with Bucky gives him perspective. Bucky's Narnian adventure/boyfriend distracting him past his baggage. Tirian visiting our world and helping and/or amusing and/or confusing Bucky, at any point in his life. Bucky helping Tirian avert the awfulness. Competence porn. Anything!

What about worldbuilding concept crossovers, like maybe the Aether or Tesseract function like the rings, or the Convergence hits Narnia, too. Did Tirian astrally project to Bucky the way he did to the Friends of Narnia to become Bucky's seemingly imaginary friend growing up, and then they meet for real? Or, the same prompt as above about the stable as a portal.


Miles Straume/Bucky Barnes (Lost/MCU) & Donna Noble/Bucky Barnes (Doctor Who/MCU)

General Stuff for Both Pairings:
— Bucky & MCU: See general section above the Bucky/Narnia prompts
— Doctor Who: I’ve only seen series 1-5. I like all three Doctors, so feel free to do timey-wimey stuff to include whichever one(s) you want. I’m fine pretending away Donna’s final fiancé to make it work.
— Lost: No sideways universe, please! The afterlife is my biggest DNW, but Miles’s superpower or Smokey impersonating people are totally fine. I like almost all the characters, so anyone is welcome appear. The only ones I wouldn’t want to play a huge role are Jack and Ben, but even they are fine as part of the ensemble. No focus on Kate ships, please. Feel free to pretend away deaths so that more people made it off the island or into the 70s, or whatever.
— Ships: Part of why I like the idea of both of these is because I think Donna or Miles could tough-love Bucky out of his own head in a fun, constructive way. I’m all for getting over your brooding and baggage via adventures and distraction and building a new life, not so much selfless caretaker/helpless woobie hurt-comfort.
— Timelines: Experiences with a canon's premise are what make characters interesting to me, so please don’t set it entirely before Miles went to the island or before Donna met the Doctor. That said, I'm also shallow and want everyone to be as young and beautiful as they were in canon (1-2 years post canon is fine). Instead of aging characters up, can you pretend Lost or Donna’s season happened more recently to line up with whatever part of Bucky’s modern timeline you’re tackling (ex. pretend the plane crashed in 2010, putting the finale in early 2014, a few months before the events of CA:TWS, or it crashed in 2011, so that Miles & Co left the island a year before CA:CW)? Or whatever works.


Miles/Bucky:
I think they would be so entertainingly dry and cool together. Miles is so chill and practical. He's a good person, but he's also got an ice-cold, mercenary streak. I love how he always just rolled with the island weirdness and was the sarcastic voice of reason. I'd love something set in the 70s and/or post-Lost series. Bucky/Miles on their own would be lovely, but I also love the idea of Bucky being taken in by the Lostaway gang, in addition to becoming Miles's boyfriend. Just another traumatized misfit trying to let go of his baggage and move on. What are Sawyer's nicknames for Bucky?!?! Any subset of characters is welcome in the background, but I have an extra soft spot for Sawyer, Richard, Hurley, Frank, Juliet, Desmond and Penny in particular, and I like the idea of Bucky befriending Sayid. Feel free to include background Desmond/Penny and/or Juliet/Sawyer.

What if Richard knew Bucky from way back when and that’s how he gets drawn into the group? Was Bucky a candidate? What if the Winter Soldier was sent to the island on a mission? It could be literally in the 70s, or he could arrive from some other time and flash into the 70s the way the Oceanic 6 did (any then meet Miles again in the future?). Maybe the freighter was SHIELD/Hydra and Bucky was the only merc to survive, and he becomes part of their gang; I mean, Charles Widmore WAS on that council with Fury, and Lost DID have a Hydra island. Bucky as a jumpsuit-wearing member of Dharma's undercover time travelers club could be amazing. Maybe the island heals Bucky (does it wear off when he leaves? or not?).

And/or Bucky and Miles meet in the present after both of their escapes. Can Miles (and possibly the other Lostaways) help Bucky get emotionally healthy enough to stop running from his friend Steve? Or maybe, since the island's a nice place now, Miles takes him to visit Hurley. Or, what if other Avengers find out about Miles's superpower and recruit him for a mission that requires his and Bucky's specific combination of skills?


Donna/Bucky:
I would never have thought of this ship, but I saw it in the tagset and fell instantly in love. It's such a great idea and has so many of the themes that draw me to the other Bucky ships I was already requesting! I adore both of these characters and think they would bounce off one another beautifully. I'm still not over the end of her story, neither the amnesia nor the idea of a lottery ticket as a worthy reward. :( And I really need him to smile and have more friends.

I'd like Donna to get her memories back and find a way to keep being helpful and hilarious and important, even if it's in a new, more quotidian way (but universe saving ways are also good). I'd like Bucky to be okay and find something good with someone outside his insular world of messed-up Avengers. They have the potential to be like one of those 1930s screwball pairings, but with extra time-traveling/alien/superhero shenanigans. So competent, in hilariously complementary ways that might surprise even them. But you can take another angle to the relationship, too! I'm open to anything.

Do Donna and Ten pick Bucky up, at whatever point in his timeline, and they fall in love during TARDIS adventures? And/or, maybe the story of how Bucky got his memories back between CA:TWS and CA:CW was with Donna? Some canon divergence where he found her after CA:TWS or she saw him on the news and sought him out? And/or maybe something where they met at multiple, non-linear points? Like, some combination of: Donna helping the Howling Commandos fight Hydra over the Tesseract; one of the Winter Soldier's missions; post-TWS; pre-war Brooklyn days; in Wakanda; any canon divergence (you don’t need to keep Bucky’s or Donna’s storylines canon-compliant).

Or maybe they didn't know each other before, but recognize one another as amnesiacs and bond over that? Or knew one another but now one of them doesn’t remember (angst that hopefully gets cleared up by the end)? You could also not do anything with amnesia, and just handwave that they both remember by the beginning of the story, no explanation required, and do something interesting together. Or maybe bonding over what it feels like to be out of time? Or maybe it's some Whovian-style or MCU-style case of the week that the two of them solve, no Doctor or Avengers required (though they are, of course, welcome to appear). Does she grumble because there's suddenly a lot more running in her life again?

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aurilly

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