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[personal profile] ghostwings
Hello, mystery person-who's-been-assigned-to-me!

My AO3 name is Eida, and the requests I've made are:

"Kings" - The Pierces (Music Video)
"The Lioness" - Xandria (Song)
"The Lion's Roar" - First Aid Kit (Song)
"Little Talks" - Of Monsters and Men (Music Video)
"Running With The Wolves" - AURORA (Music Video)
"What The Water Gave Me" - Florence and the Machine (Song)
"Which Witch" - Florence and the Machine (Song)

I've asked for fanfic for all the music pieces.

I don't have many strong do-not-wants. I'd rather not get anything super-gory.

I'd also prefer that the ending not be completely bleak and hopeless--I'm okay with stories that get a bit dark, but I'd like there to be at least some light at the end of the tunnel. Bittersweet endings can be lovely, as long as there's at least a pinch of sweet to go with the bitter.

If a fic goes into sexually explicit territory, I would like everyone involved to be a consenting adult, and am solely interested in femslash.

For anything non-explicit, of course, I'm good with femslash, slash, and het (though of the three, I tend to favor femslash). I also love a good gen fic!

Genre-wise, I enjoy stories that have some sort of speculative fiction element--be it sci-fi or fantasy. I'd be interested in pretty much any subgenre you can think of--sword and sorcery, urban fantasy, magic realism, space opera, cyberpunk, steampunk, post-apocalyptic, etc.--if it works for the story, it works for me!

Of course, if a present-day real-world no-fantastic-elements setting works for the story you want to tell, I'm completely fine with that, too!

So far as tone goes, I'm happy with anything from sweet fluff to rollicking comedy to emotionally wrenching drama. However, as I mentioned above, I do prefer that the ending not be entirely unhappy--even if all problems aren't solved, there should be some note of hope, and the feeling that there's a chance for resolution.

Here are a few of my general fiction likes:

-Exploration/development of relationships (romantic or platonic)

-Worldbuilding (I really enjoy reading about fictional cultures, with their own customs, social mores, religions, and ways of viewing the world)

-Interesting magic systems

-People being competent in their field

-A strong sense of place--settings that are distinct and evocatively described

-Exploring the viewpoint of non-human characters who might think and behave differently than humans would

-Fics that include/consist of in-universe documents (i.e. letters, news articles, excerpts from history books, chatlogs, etc.)

I've tried to give some general prompts, but as always, optional details are optional--if you have something different in mind, feel free to go for it!

"Kings" - The Pierces (Music Video) [Youtube | Lyrics]

If we want to
We could do what kings do
I can feel the earth move
When you speak
If we fight through
All the things we once knew
Everything would change for me and you
We could do what kings do

There’s all sorts of interesting imagery in this video. The characters are all, save for the possibly-dead king in the opening, female, and seem to be living with a rather low technology level (given that they’re using swords and spears as weapons.) I get the impression of a post-apocalyptic society, knocked back to a lower technology state by some unknown disaster.

There appear to be two groups of women preparing for battle—though as it turns out, no actual battle takes place. Rather than competing for the crown, they end up destroying it, and then all gathering together to dance around a bonfire.

Was there an actual conflict brewing over the possession of the crown, and the power (symbolic or otherwise) it represented, which was narrowly averted? If that's the case, then what causes the characters to decide, together, to reject the crown?

Or was this all a pre-planned ritual of some sort—and if so, what is it supposed to symbolize, and how did the tradition begin?

"The Lioness" - Xandria (Song) [Youtube | Lyrics]

The lioness is hunting us
So beautiful and dangerous
Her embrace is murderous
Beware of the lioness

The song's lyrics describe a lioness. There's an ambivalence in the singer's attitude towards the predator--the singer seems to feel both fear and admiration, and the lines "Do you feel her gentle touch / Her sweet caress hurts just as much" imply a feeling of closeness.

There are a number of ways you could interpret the lyrics. The lioness doesn't necessarily have to be a literal lioness, though that's a possibility--the protagonist could be in a situation where they're in danger of falling prey to an actual lioness, or a similar large feline.

Alternatively, the lioness could be a person--perhaps there's an assassin/bounty hunter known as the Lioness, and the protagonist is trying to escape her. The matter could be complicated if the protagonist and the Lioness had a prior history together--whether it was a working relationship, or they were friends/lovers.

Or, to put a different spin on it--maybe the lioness isn't an external entity. Perhaps the protagonist is a shapeshifter struggling to come to terms with their animal side, or otherwise has some sort of lioness-related magic they're struggling to control.

"The Lion's Roar" - First Aid Kit (Song) [Youtube | Lyrics]

And I'm a goddamn fool, but then again so are you
And the lion's roar, the lion's roar
Has me seeking out and searching for you
And I never really knew what to do

It's another song featuring a lion! However, this one has a rather different tone.

There's a certain bitterness in the lyrics--I get the idea of a person singing to someone they were once close to (and still care about), but have had a falling-out with for some reason. Possibly they feel the other person has been "blindly deceived / By those who preach and pray and teach," and that's the root of their current separation. The "lion's roar" could be, again, literal or metaphorical--an actual lion/other large feline (i.e., a cougar, if this takes place in the Americas), or a person, or an organization, or even something like a natural disaster (a storm can roar, too)--but either way, the crisis might help to force the singer and their estranged friend/relative/lover to work together, and possibly reforge old bonds.

For instance, the protagonist might be out in the wilderness for some reason (a camping trip, or a research expedition), and might wind up stranded with the other person (maybe they were with a group, and got separated, or perhaps they met up by chance, or maybe this general area was somewhere they both used to go together, and each of them, individually, chose to come out here for nostalgia's sake), and have to work together to make it through whatever difficulty that's gotten them stuck out here.

"Little Talks" - Of Monsters and Men (Music Video) [Youtube | Lyrics]

Some days I don't know if I am wrong or right
Your mind is playing tricks on you, my dear

'Cause though the truth may vary
This ship will carry our bodies safe to shore

Ever since the first time I saw this video, I wondered about the story behind it.

There are five men in a rather homey-looking zeppelin, and in their travels they come across what looks like a meteor… which hatches to reveal a fiery flying woman, who, for whatever reason, chooses to come along with them on their journey through a snowy, mountainous landscape full of massive ancient statues and strange beasts. Along the way, she rescues the men several times with her magic (though, sadly, their zeppelin is a lost cause). In the end, the woman meets a gigantic creature, aglow with a fire that matches the woman’s own—she seems overjoyed to see them, as though she’s been searching for this creature the entire time, and at the song’s close, she’s floating above the creature’s forehead as the creature unfolds their massive wings.

I’d love to hear your interpretation of what’s going on, here. Who are these men, and why are they traveling? Are they searching for something—the creature, perhaps, or something relating to all the old statues they fly past? What sort of being, exactly, is the woman, and what is her relation to the creature? What are the interactions between the human men and the fiery woman like? What do they make of her, and she of them? Do they become friends?

And what happens after the end of the video?

"Rose Red" - Emilie Autumn (Song) [Youtube | Lyrics]

A thousand years gone by
Too late to wonder why
I'm here alone
If in my darkest hour
She rose that fell a flower
I should have known

This song seems to be about a woman--perhaps a princess, or noblewoman--who has grown embittered and cynical, and is now determined to take her fate into her own hands.

What happened to her in the past that made her the way she is now? Who was it who rose after "fell[ing] a flower" (said flower might be the singer herself--but you could interpret it as being someone the singer cared about, as well)?

And the lyrics mention "A thousand years gone by"--if taken literally, the protagonist has had her life massively extended by some means (unless she's of a naturally long-lived species, i.e. a faerie or elf. Or a dwarf; I haven't seen many dwarven princesses before.) How did this come about? Was it by the protagonist's own will--to let her survive for long enough to see whatever plans she has come to fruition--or is it part of a curse, to force her to live in misery until some condition is met? If you want to take this in a more science fiction, rather than fantasy, direction, there might be longevity treatments, cryostasis, or time dilation involved.

This part of the song is intriguing:

For this freedom
I have given all I had
For this darkness
I gave my light
For this wisdom
I have lost my innocence

What freedom has she gained? What darkness? What wisdom?

And how does she end up using all three to weave her own destiny, and give her story the ending she desires?

"Running With The Wolves" - AURORA (Music Video) [Youtube | Lyrics]

There's blood on your lies
The sky's open wide
There is nowhere for you to hide
The hardest moon is shining

I'm running with the wolves tonight
I'm running with the wolves

In the video, there’s a young woman traveling through a barren land, with a city full of skyscrapers visible in the distance that she seems to be trying to get away from. She seems to have wires stuck into various parts of her body—perhaps she was the subject of some sort of experiment, and is fleeing from the ones who performed it. She has one pursuer, as she flees—a man in a truck. However, she’s able to get away, to a forested area, and the closing shot is of her walking into a body of water, and diving under.

What’s her story? What happened to her? Is she a human, altered by experimentation? And if so, in what ways, and to what purpose? Or is she, perhaps, a humanoid robot? And who was it that created/altered her, in either case? Is it a government agency, a shadowy organization, or perhaps a single renegade scientist (i.e. the man in the truck)?

And where does she go after she gets into the woods? Has she finally lost her pursuer(s), or does she still have to try to find some safe place for herself? Will she find a friend, somewhere, to give her aid and shelter?

"What The Water Gave Me" - Florence and the Machine (Song) [Youtube | Lyrics]

‘Cause she’s a cruel mistress
And a bargain must be made
But oh, my love, don’t forget me
When I let the water take me

So lay me down
Let the only sound
Be the overflow
Pockets full of stones

What is the bargain the lyrics mention? And what is meant by "let the water take me?" There seems to be some sort of sacrifice--how did it come about, and what is it meant to achieve?

It's possible there's some sort of magical contract between the people of a certain area and a deity/spirit of the nearest body of water (an ocean, or river, or lake), and that part of it involves the sacrifice of a person to the water. While the "pockets full of stones" is suggestive of drowning... perhaps the sacrifice doesn't actually die, but is, after submerging themselves, transformed in some way to become of the water (a mermaid, or naiad, or other water-creature). Or perhaps they're taken to the realm of the gods/spirits, to attend upon the god/spirit of the water. Or perhaps there's merely a symbolic "drowning" in which the person is submerged, pulled back up, and then taken off to some remote temple where they'll spend some amount of time in service (possibly a lifetime, possibly less--but still enough time that it's a big deal.)

Whatever happens, it seems clear that the person who's being taken by the water will be separated from those they knew (thus the entreaty that their love not forget them). What is it like, for the person to be sacrificed, and what is it like, for those left behind? Do they believe the sacrifice was worth it?

"Which Witch" - Florence and the Machine (Song) [Youtube | Lyrics]

And it's my whole heart
Weighed and measured inside
And it's an old scar
Trying to bleach it out
And it's my whole heart
Deemed and delivered a crime
I'm on trial, waiting 'til the beat comes out

The singer appears to be in a situation where their love has been "deemed... a crime." How did this come about? Why is their love forbidden, under under threat of punishment? (Especially since the punishment is possibly execution--which might involve burning at the stake, given the line "Fire, help me to forget," though you could also interpret the lyrics as not referring to judicial punishment, but merely strong social disapproval, with the fire and chains being metaphorical.) Who is it that the protagonist loves so deeply as to be willing to defy society, how did their relationship develop, and what ends up happening to the protagonist and their beloved?

The singer's attitude, to me, comes off as both defiant and weary of the suffering they've gone through--but no matter the cost, they're not going to give up their feelings for the person they desire.

Witchery is mentioned in the title, but not in the song itself--though the song is pretty clearly trying to allude to witch trials. It's up to you whether witchcraft (or the fear of it) is involved at all. One possibility--the protagonist is accused of witchcraft, in a setting where that's a serious accusation with heavy penalties if found guilty, by someone powerful who wants to get the protagonist out of the way because they're in love with the same person as the protagonist. Alternatively, in a fantasy setting, the protagonist could have actual magic powers, which might either help them resolve the situation... or might be the reason they're in it in the first place (either witchcraft is outlawed, or there are restrictions against witches being involved with non-witches, or there are warring witch clans and the protagonist has fallen in love with someone on the other side, etc.)

Of course, witchery might have no role whatsoever, and the protagonist's love is forbidden for any of the many, many reasons that love has been forbidden over the centuries--be it that the lover/beloved are in two groups that aren't supposed to intermarry, or that the beloved, specifically, is someone the protagonist's family/society does not want the protagonist to be with.
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August 2017


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