ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (Default)
Hello, Yuletide Author!

My AO3 username is Eida, and my requests for this year are:

16 Ways to Kill a Vampire at McDonalds (Video Game) - Lucy

Each to Each - Seanan McGuire - Any

Lady of the Shard (Webcomic) – Acolyte, Radiant Goddess

Here are a few of my general fic likes:

○ Relationship development

○ Hurt/Comfort

○ Seeing characters be competent at what they do (and discovering their niche)

○ Characters who are comfortable with each other, and willing to engage in good-natured banter

○ Missing scenes and perspectives from characters we didn't get to see much of in canon.

○ Fics set pre- and post- canon.

○ Worldbuilding—I love seeing aspects of canon examined more deeply or expanded on in interesting ways.

○ 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.)

Other details:

○ I'm okay with a wide range of tones, from fluff to darker fic. However, I prefer endings that aren't entirely unhappy—bittersweet is fine, though.

○ Also, I'm completely okay with canon divergence AUs, if you have an interesting what-might-have-been you want to pursue.

Fandom-Specific Prompts:

16 Ways to Kill a Vampire at McDonalds (Lucy)

This Twine game can be played online here.

○ How did Lucy get into vampire hunting in the first place? Did she survive a vampire attack and decided to dedicate herself to helping keep others safe? (Maybe she was rescued by Maggie and Luke, and that's how they first met.) Or did someone she cared about get attacked by a vampire, driving Lucy to take up a career as a vampire hunter?

Or did she just respond to a Craigslist ad: "Freelance Vampire Hunters Wanted!!! Start Today!"

○ Some dialogue options can suggest that Lucy and Maggie are dating; if so, what's their relationship like? What might one of their dates look like? According to Lucy, they share an enjoyment of watching vampire movies and "yell[ing] constructive criticism," so hitting the movies is one option. (And it's possible they'll run into another vampire, much like Lucy did in the game... 16 Ways to Kill a Vampire at the Movie Theater?)

○ In some of the variants of the true ending Claire ends up becoming a vampire hunter (either after Lucy explains things to her in the McDonalds, or, after the fire extinguisher ending, when Claire decides to track Lucy down and get an explanation as to what attacked her. Of course, it may not be an immediate shift in career—Lucy might not be super gung-ho about the idea of a seventeen-year-old jumping into such a dangerous job. Still, it seems likely that Lucy could serve as a mentor, once Claire establishes that she's not going to be turned aside from her goal; what sort of lessons might she help teach Claire about the fine art of vampire hunting?

Each to Each - Seanan McGuire (Any)

This short story can be read here.

○ This is such a fascinating setting overall; I'd love to see pretty much any worldbuilding involving the mermaids. For one thing—I want to know more about the new Atlantis the clownfish mermaid describes towards the end. How are the mermaids working to create it? The clownfish mermaid mentions the use of genetic engineering to create underwater cities—are there scientist mermaids out there with equipment stolen or salvaged from non-modified humans?

○ There are likely multiple mermaid societies being formed in different regions since the U.S. isn't the only nation creating mermaids—are they generally in accord with each other, or is there any conflict between them—either in terms of claiming territory or in clashing ideas of what mermaid society should look like?

○ The mermaids who've left behind their nations of origin are mounting “rescue missions” to free their military kin—and doubtless also those who, like the clownfish mermaid, were modified for “Rich men playing with military toys.” I'd love to see one of these play out, either from the side of rescuers or rescued.

○ As a side note, some species of shark are capable of parthenogenesis, so depending on how deep the genetic modification goes, male merfolk might not be necessary for some of the mermaids to have offspring—there could potentially be second-generation mermaids swimming around before too long, who have only known life under the sea. (Though it's also possible that nations other than the U.S. are willing to create mermaids of either sex.) What if one of these young mermaids was captured by humans? What would they make of the land people—and how would they escape?

Lady of the Shard (Any)

This webcomic can be read here.

○ The comic largely follows the Acolyte's point of view; what does their developing relationship look like through the eyes of the Radiant Goddess (who's caught between her feelings for the Acolyte and her understandable wariness regarding mortal-divine relationships)?

○ The Acolyte has become a High Priestess, as well as being the Phoenix, and is now immortal by virtue of the fragment of divinity in her forehead. What are some of her experiences adjusting to her new role (with the aid of her beloved All-Goddess and the spirit of the previous Phoenix)? (And given that all the stars have been smooshed together into a new planet, there's probably plenty of general cultural changes going on around her, too.)

○ The Old God is... well, not a nice person. At the same time, though, she's something of a tragic figure—her lone divinity made her lonely, and shared loneliness was one thing that drew her to the "legendary temple girl" who became the Radiant Goddess. (Not that this excuses any of her actions, of course, but still, the Old God is an intriguing character.) What was it like, being the first being to exist, creating everything that was, falling in love with a mortal... and then being struck down by that same mortal (who you turned into a goddess in the first place)?

○ At the end of the comic, the Radiant Goddess merges with the Old Goddess to become the All-Goddess, and an image at the end shows that the Old God is still within her, finally having found some ease for her loneliness. Does the All-Goddess feel the Old Goddess “showing through” at all, and how does she feel about it?


Aug. 1st, 2017 10:18 pm
ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (Default)
Haven't played Nethack in ages; my current laptop doesn't have a number pad, and I'm having difficulty getting the Mac version of Nethack to allow for movement using the arrow keys.

But I found an iPhone version on the App Store, and have been enjoying myself a great deal, except for the parts where I have a very promising character die from a mix of bad luck and my own poor choices. That's as disheartening as ever. (RIP wizard who got cornered by a unicorn in Sokoban and didn't have a good Elbereth-writing wand.)

(The worst loss I ever had was when I was playing Slash'EM--a variant of Nethack, with lots of added content and some other changes--with a monk character, and I'd just gotten the Amulet of Yendor, but I ran into some monster that kept turning the floor to water... and it drowned me just as I was getting out my boots of levitation. Days and days of playing, all gone!

Ah, the joys of roguelikes.)
ghostwings: An image of Yuna, a character from Final Fantasy X and X-2, in her Songstress outfit (Yuna)

My AO3 name is Eida, and I'm requesting the following games/characters:

16 Ways to Kill a Vampire at McDonalds - Lucy & Maggie & Luke, Lucy & Claire, Lucy & Maggie & Luke & Claire

Aquaria - Naija

Final Fantasy VI - Celes Chere, Terra Branford, Terra Branford & Celes Chere, Terra Branford/Celes Chere

Final Fantasy X & X-2 - Yuna & Rikku, Yuna & Rikku & Paine, Rikku/Paine

I've requested fan fiction for all of them.

Here are a few of my general fic likes:

-Relationship development


-Seeing characters be competent at what they do (and discovering their niche)

-Characters who are comfortable with each other, and willing to engage in good-natured banter

-Missing scenes and perspectives from characters we didn't get to see much of in canon.

-Fics set pre- and post- canon.

-Worldbuilding--I love seeing aspects of canon examined more deeply or expanded on in interesting ways.

-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.)

Also, I'm completely okay with canon divergence AUs, if you have an interesting what-might-have-been you want to pursue.

16 Ways to Kill a Vampire at McDonalds

This Twine game can be played online here.

I'd love to see more vampire-hunting adventures. For Lucy & Maggie & Luke, this could be pre- or post-game. I'm curious as to how the three of them got together in the first place--did they all know each other before going into the vampire-hunting business, or did they meet afterwards?How did they discover the existence of vampires, and why did they decide to fight them? Were any of them potential vampire victims (as the cashier Claire was in-game) who were rescued, or did any of them have friends/family who were attacked by/turned into vampires? Luke uses his grandfather's holy musket, which implies that, for him, the job runs in the family (although it's possible the musket was just a regular musket while his grandfather had it, and was only made holy after it came into Luke's possession).

Or maybe all three of them just answered the same Craigslist ad: "Freelance Vampire Hunters Wanted!!! Start Today!"

For Lucy & Claire--in some of the variants of the true ending, Lucy tells Claire about vampires, and Claire ends up becoming a vampire hunter. Of course, it doesn't describe the exact path she takes to vampire-hunting--it's possible that Lucy wouldn't be 100% gung-ho about having a seventeen-year-old jump into the dangerous life of a vampire hunter, and equally possible that Claire might insist. Or, in the fire extinguisher ending, Claire doesn't get out of the hospital until Lucy & Co leave town, and after Claire finds that she can't go back to her normal routine after all that's happened, she decides to follow them--and ends up becoming a vampire hunter on that route, as well. What's the reunion with Lucy like?

For Lucy & Maggie & Luke & Claire--assuming Claire ends up joining the rest of the vampire hunting team, how do Maggie and Luke react to her joining up? How does she fit into the group? Lucy's "professional bait," Maggie goes for hand-to-hand combat, and Luke has his holy musket--where does Claire fit in? What skills does she end up bringing to the team?


This is such a beautiful, atmospheric game, and it can also be a rather lonely one. For much of the game, Naija has no one she can talk to at all; she's making her way across the ocean alone. (She's not so alone after meeting Li. He doesn't have any in-game dialogue, to my recollection, though presumably they manage to communicate somehow, given that they fall in love and have a son.)

Naija goes through a lot--she starts out as a person with no memory of her past, living a simple, peaceful life, until she discovers a song that permits her entrance to some mysterious ruins and a forgotten god--and from there, she keeps going, traversing area after area, discovering the ruins of the city where her people once lived, and meeting--and killing--gods, until she comes face to face with the Creator of her world, who is nothing like she would have imagined.

And then, at last, she finds her mother--and learns the truth of how she lost her memory. She's stolen away from her family--a sequel hook for a sequel that never materialized.

Pre-canon, during canon, and post-canon would all be welcome. What was her youth in Mithalas like? What are her reactions to encountering some of the beauties and horrors she encounters on her journey? And what becomes of her after her mother, Mia, sweeps Naija away for her own purposes? Does she ever reunite with her family again?

Final Fantasy VI

I love both Celes and Terra. Both were raised by the Empire, both possess magical power that separates them from the rest of humanity, and both wind up on the side of the rebellion.

It's not entirely clear to what extent they interacted pre-game. In the GBA version, after meeting in Narshe, she says "Terra... Who'd have thought we'd meet again... like this?" This implies that there's some history between the two of them, and Celes would certainly have at least known of Terra's existence, given how the Empire used her as a living weapon--and was likely acquainted with her to some extent before Kefka put the Slave Crown on Terra.

I can't imagine Celes really approved of putting the Slave Crown on Terra, but that in itself didn't cause her to defect, which is an issue that's not really discussed too much in-game.

Celes and Terra are both eighteen years old. Somehow, despite her young age, Celes is a general--which I can't imagine went over well with all of the troops she was commanding, many of whom would have been older than her (and male). She's a prodigy, but she would have had to continually have to prove herself--which probably contributed to her sharp, icy demeanor.

Terra's got plenty of her own issues--one of the major themes of the game involves her trying to figure out who she is, given both the fact that the Empire used her as a (mind-controlled) weapon due to her magic, and the fact that she's of mixed human and Esper heritage. She's had her past stolen from her (though she recovers memories as time passes), and she's afraid that she may not even be capable of love. (Which led to Terra questioning Celes if she could feel love, which, understandably, Celes mistakes for mockery.)

They both find acceptance, in the end; they make friends among the other party members, and Terra takes care of the orphans of Mobliz.

I'd love to see anything about either, or both (and in the latter case, both gen and femslash would be lovely). What were their experiences as living magical weapons, trained by the Empire? What interactions did they have pre-canon? What was Celes' reaction to discovering that Kefka had used a Slave Crown on Terra? Does Terra ever have an actual conversation with Celes about love? What is it like for both of them to lose their magic--and for Terra to lose her Esper half? What do they end up doing post-game?

Final Fantasy X & X-2

(Please feel free to ignore FFX-2.5 ~Eien no Daisho~ and FFX -Will-; while I've looked up information on the Final Fantasy wiki, I haven't read/listened to either one. I've also never played Last Mission, though I've seen cutscene videos on Youtube; use or ignore it, whichever works best for your story.

Also, I don't have any strong feelings regarding the ending of FFX-2 you go with, if you do something post FFX-2--Tidus can come back or not, whichever you prefer.)

I'd be interested to see something involving Yuna & Rikku during the pilgrimage--they had a lot of catching up to do, since they only met when they were both in their teens. There's also the fact that Rikku desperately wants to get Yuna to end her pilgrimage... but Yuna's even more determined to keep going. It probably didn't take Rikku long to realize that; even though she hated where the pilgrimage was supposed to lead, she still stuck with Yuna right to the end.
It would also be neat to see something post-pilgrimage, possibly around the time Yuna joins the Gullwings, with the two of them catching up once again.
For Yuna and Rikku and Paine, I'd enjoy seeing some other sphere-hunting escapades, and/or something that explores the way they develop as a team over time, with Paine especially coming to trust the other two more. Paine's a bit of the odd one out of the three; she joined the Gullwings a little before Yuna, so she wouldn't have gotten the chance to know Rikku all that well, whereas Yuna and Rikku have significant history together. Rikku's bright and cheerful, Paine's quieter and tends towards sarcasm, and Yuna slips into a leader position (which makes sense, given that as a summoner, she was the leader of her pilgrimage).

Going on a Yuna tangent--I do think there's an interesting conflict she goes through in X-2. She's clearly trying to break away from her old, summoner persona, but she never quite manages it completely. Being a summoner was being a sacrifice for Spira--and though she didn't end up sacrificing her life, she lost the young man she'd fallen in love with. She tries to recreate herself as a sphere hunter, out to find whatever treasure she can... but she's altruistic at her core, and driven by duty to the people around her; she can never refuse a person in need.

She's also probably not entirely comfortable with her High Summoner status; being around people who aren't over-awed by who she is is probably a comfort, and Rikku (her cousin, who was with her on her pilgrimage) and Paine (who isn't really the type to fawn over famous people) fit that bill.
Rikku and Paine, I think, would make a cute couple; they're different in a lot of ways, but sometimes opposites attract. I'd like to see fic where they get to know each other better--maybe they go on some sort of mission without Yuna, or they end up in some other situation alone together. What might they end up doing after the end of X-2? If they wind up going their separate ways for a while (as happens per Last Mission), how might they get back together again?

ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (Default)
Today I found out that at least one species of snake hunts communally!

Cuban boas apparently have much better success in hunting bats when they work together (or, to steal a delightful pun from the article, they have a higher bat-ing average).

Another interseting tidbit from the article:

"Wolves hunt together for primarily social reasons—multiple studies have shown that they don’t necessarily get more food by sticking with a pack."

That goes against what I'd always thought about wolves--I'll probably try and look up some of those studies at some point.

Edit 6/4: From what I can tell, that bit about wolves is... misleadingly phrased, at best. There's a point of diminishing returns regarding pack size (where adding more wolves doesn't necessarily mean more success hunting), which makes sense, because that's how pretty much any team activity works. (Another article on the topic: Strength in numbers? For wolves, maybe not. The study referenced in the article gave the optimum pack size for hunting elk, specifically, as four wolves; with a larger pack, the amount of successful hunts "leveled off" and "individual hunting effort decreased;" in other words, individuals had to work less, which is still a definite benefit.)

The optimal amount of wolves is going to vary, based on what the wolves in a given area generally hunt; some animals are harder to catch than others. (Link to relevant study: Influence of Group Size on the Success of Wolves Hunting Bison.)

Wolves may be part of a larger group than what is necessary for optimum success for social reasons, but that's not quite what the Popular Science article seemed to be saying.

It's possible that there's some situation where a lone wolf would do just as well hunting-success-wise as a pack, but in my (admittedly brief) search I didn't turn up anything. I wish the original article would have linked some of these "multiple studies."

Another interesting bit of wolf knowledge I came across during the search, however, was that, going off of computer simulations, wolves hunting in packs don't necessarily need much communication to coordinate the hunt--they just need to know the relative position of the prey and the other wolves. (Article: Wolf hunting strategy follows simple rules.)

And now my post originally about snakes is mostly about wolves.
ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (Default)
I read a review the other day of the Netflix show Anne with an E.

I didn't much like what I heard about the show, but I was inspired to started rereading Anne of Green Gables (courtesy of Project Gutenberg). The last time I read it was ages ago; I think I also read (at least part of) Anne of Avonlea, but didn't get any farther in the series than that.

I'm enjoying it, so far. It's a rather soothing, nostalgic read (as much as I tell myself that I really ought to work more on my backlog of things-I-haven't-read-but-mean-to).
ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (Default)
There's nothing quite like seeing seeds sprout.

I am still not much of a gardener; I'm making plenty of mistakes as I go along. But I do have a few lovely little indoor containers full of green growing things, and they make me happy.

I was actually able to harvest some garlic chives for a dish I made on Saturday night. Not very much, but still.

One of these days, I'd like to live somewhere where I can have more space and better lighting for gardening; I really, really want to be able to grow basil and lavender, but I don't think there's anywhere in my apartment that really gets enough sunlight for them to thrive. I have a little patio, but it's too shady to grow anything sun-loving.

Ah, well. Maybe someday.

ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (Default)
I think it would probably be a good idea to start writing actual posts, instead of just using my Dreamwidth as a repository for Dear Writer letters for fanfic exchanges.

On that note:

I've started a new short story. I'm not 100% certain where it's going, but it involves a medium and the ghost of a werewolf. We'll see how it goes.

Also, while I'm years late to the party, I finally own a phone capable of running Neko Atsume, and am really enjoying it!

A screenshot of the game Neko Atsume, featuring two cats playing with balls.
ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (Default)
Hello! My AO3 name is Eida, and I've requested the following fandoms/pairings:

Final Fantasy X

Auron & Braska & Jecht
Fayth of Valefor & Yuna
Yuna & Lulu

Shoujo Kakumei Utena | Revolutionary Girl Utena

Himemiya Anthy & Shinohara Wakaba
Himemiya Anthy/Tenjou Utena

Original Work

Elemental Magic User/Elemental Spirit
Female Demon/Female Human

Lady of the Shard (Webcomic)

Acolyte/Radiant Goddess | Temple Girl

As always, optional details are optional; if you've got an idea I didn't touch upon in this letter, please do feel free to run with it.

So far as tone goes, I'm good with a broad range--from the happy fluffy end of the scale to the darker, gloomier side.

These are my main do-not-wants:

-No excessive gore, please.

-I do not want anything sexually explicit in any fandom other than Original Work.

-I do not want anything sexually explicit involving male characters.

-I do not want anything sexually explicit involving characters under the age of 18.

Here are a few of my general fic likes:

-Relationship development


-Seeing characters be competent at what they do (and discovering their niche)

-Worldbuilding--I love seeing aspects of canon examined more deeply or expanded on in interesting ways

-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.)

Final Fantasy X

Auron & Braska & Jecht

I love this trio. Auron is a straitlaced, somewhat-gruff ex-warrior monk who clearly takes his job as guardian very seriously; at first, he doesn't seem to like Jecht very much, and doesn't understand why Braska wants him around at all, but by the end he's clearly gained some respect for his fellow guardian, and he's close enough with Jecht that he agrees to look after Jecht's son. Jecht is a fish-out-of-water; he can be pretty irreverent (he wasn't raised in the Yevon religion, as the other two were, after all), and at first, he doesn't take things quite so seriously as Auron, but after a while traveling with him and Braska, he gets to the point where he willingly offers his own life to bring the Calm. Braska seems to serve as a medium between the two; while he takes his duty as a summoner very seriously, he doesn't necessarily take himself as seriously, and takes Jecht's attitude in stride.

I'd love to see anything involving the three of them during the pilgrimage--whether it's something lighter (a humorous episode in the pilgrimage) or something a bit heavier (soul-searching and discussion in Zanarkand, when Braska and Jecht prepare to make their mutual sacrifice).

Fayth of Valefor & Yuna

Valefor was always my favorite aeon, and I sort of feel that Yuna must have had a special bond with the fayth in Besaid, given that Besaid was where she grew up after her father's death, and was where she started her pilgrimage. I think it's interesting that, if memory serves, Valefor is the only aeon Yuna summons in a non-combat context--first, when she's demonstrating that she's gotten an aeon and officially become a summoner, she summons Valefor in the middle of the village; later, when she leaps from a ledge at the wedding ceremony in Bevelle, she summons Valefor to fly her away.

There's also the fact that Valefor's fayth appears to be a young woman--perhaps around Yuna's age at the time she was made into a fayth. We don't get a lot of detail about the background of the individual fayth, though presumably the nature of the individual who became a fayth is reflected in some way by the aeon their dreams manifest.

I'd be interested to see a fic about the first time Yuna went to pray to the fayth--what did that entail? It seems as though fayth know the truth about Sin, but given that Yuna didn't know until Yunalesca explained things in Zanarkand, it seems none of the fayth were inclined to share at first (though they become rather more forthcoming when you visit them a second time post-Zanarkand.)

Or, since aeons are manifestations of the fayth, a fic could center around a time when Yuna summoned Valefor.

On the sadder side--at the end of the game, Yuna is forced to defeat and send Valefor, to end the cycle of Sin; I imagine that was a deeply emotional experience for both summoner and fayth.

Yuna & Lulu

Yuna and Lulu seem to have a little sister/big sister sort of relationship. I believe Yuna would have been around eight when she was brought to Besaid, and Lulu would have been around 13; I imagine that Lulu might have felt rather protective of Yuna after Yuna showed up on Besaid--one girl orphaned by Sin wanting to look after another. Despite that protectiveness, Lulu has to watch Yuna set forth on a path that they both know will end in Yuna's death--even though she cares about Yuna, she knows that Yuna is not going to be turned away from her path. Yuna, too, knows that what she's doing is going to cause pain to those who love her, but she feels she's making this sacrifice for their sake, as well as the rest of the world--to defeat Sin, and end the cycle of destruction. Of course, things aren't as the teachings of Yevon say, and in the end, it isn't Yuna's life that is sacrificed. After the end of FFX, Yuna and Lulu have another experience in common--they've both lost the man they loved.

I'd love to see anything between the two of them. Perhaps a scene from when Yuna had just come to Besaid, and is getting to know Lulu. Or, a bit later, a heart-to-heart between Yuna and Lulu when Yuna first sets out on the path of a summoner, or when Lulu leaves Besaid to accompany Father Zuke or Lady Ginnem on their pilgrimages--because if they succeed, Yuna won't have to make hers. Or you could write something that takes place during Yuna's pilgrimage--be it a quiet interlude in the earlier part of their journey, or after they both discover that the teachings of Yevon have misled them. Or, perhaps, you could write something in the aftermath of Sin's defeat, where Yuna is being celebrated as the savior of Spira and the last High Summoner, and must put on a brave face in public (as she's always done, as a summoner), while in private she is grieving, and probably only feels able to open up to someone who shared her journey with her.

Shoujo Kakumei Utena | Revolutionary Girl Utena

Himemiya Anthy & Shinohara Wakaba

These two are both close to Utena, but I don't recall them interacting with each other all that much during the series. (Though there was that Black Rose incident where Wakaba tried to kill Anthy... but other than that, not much. :P) They're part of two separate worlds--Anthy is an integral part of the magical side of Ohtori and the duels, while Wakaba remains squarely on the mundane side of things, for the most part (aside from said Black Rose incident). I think Wakaba's energetic nature could, just like Utena's, work well dynamically with Anthy's calmer nature--and heavens know Wakaba, with her longing to be special, would leap at the chance to get involved with the magical side of the world, when she was left mostly on the periphery within the series itself.

I'd love to see something between the two of them. You could have it set in Ohtori, pre-Utena's disappearance--perhaps some scenario where Wakaba is trying to get to know Anthy a little better (and maybe figure out what it is that Utena sees in her).

I'd really love to see the two meet up again post-series. Possibly, Anthy is still searching for Utena, and she wonders if Wakaba might be able to offer some clue--or else she simply wants to talk to someone who knew Utena (though Anthy would have to find some way to enable Wakaba to recover her memories of Utena, first). Or, shoot, maybe she just wants someone to trash-talk Saionji with.

Alternatively, maybe Anthy finds Utena first, and Utena is the one to suggest seeking out her friend from school, and Anthy befriends Wakaba as a result of that.

Himemiya Anthy/Tenjou Utena

Ah, I love these two. I love their whole storyline--Utena striving to be princely and rescue Anthy, while Anthy is not, as it turns out, a princess who can be swept up on a white horse and carried away. But even as her illusions about the situation are shattered, and Anthy literally stabs her in the back, Utena holds to her nobility, and never gives up on Anthy--and in doing so, she enables Anthy to rescue herself.

Really, I'd love anything between these two. Something during the series, as their relationship develops--Utena trying to keep Anthy safe, and get her to open up a bit more, while Anthy is working behind the scenes to manipulate Utena as part of her and Akio's plot to unseal the power of Dios... but all the while, Anthy is developing feelings for Utena.

Or after--I don't know if I'll ever get tired of seeing different variants on the "Anthy finds Utena, what happens next?" theme. How does the reunion go?

Original Work

Elemental Magic User/Elemental Spirit

Perhaps the magic user is summoning the spirit to assist with some task (which would vary depending on the element--a storm/water spirit to help end a drought, or a nature spirit to help remove some blight or poison from an area, or a helium spirit to help fill a fleet of airship balloons--hey, helium's an element! It's on the table and everything!) and either the spirit has to stick around for a while to fulfill their task, giving summoner and summonee a chance to know each other, or the magic user keeps finding reasons to summon that same spirit, and they both come to the realization that they have feelings for each other.

Or maybe the elemental spirit is the one to seek out the magic user--perhaps it's the spirit that requires assistance that only a mage can provide. Alternatively, perhaps the mage's power and affinity for their element has attracted the attention of a powerful spirit, and they're impressed enough that they wish to investigate the magic-user more closely, and a bond develops from there.

Female Demon/Female Human

One potential scenario: a female demon is sent to tempt an innocent human woman, but ends up falling in love with her victim, and ends up going renegade.

Alternatively, the female human is a demon-hunter who comes across a demon who, somehow, doesn't seem so bad as she's been led to believe all demons are, and ends up falling for her.

Or maybe the two started out as a demon-hunting team--the demon had already gone rogue, and now helps her human partner hunt down destructive demons who are causing havok in the mortal world. Or maybe the demon hasn't gone rogue, and the demon hierarchy doesn't want demons running around the mortal world willy-nilly, so they sent her out to hunt her fellows down, and she and the human wound up joining forces.

Or the female human could be a nun/priestess trying to convert a captive demon to the path of goodness, rather than simply banishing her back to the demon realm.


Perhaps the two princesses are part of an arranged marriage for political purposes (in some setting where same-sex arranged marriages are a thing--either because an heir is unwanted for some reason, or because two women can have a baby together via magic in this setting), and, thankfully, find themselves falling in love.

Or, alternatively, maybe one princess is trying to escape her current situation--perhaps she's going to be forced into a thoroughly unwanted arranged marriage, or her rightful throne has been usurped by some other party and she's trying to reclaim it--and goes to the other princess for help, and the two end up falling in love along the way.

Lady of the Shard (Webcomic)

Acolyte/Radiant Goddess | Temple Girl

This was such a lovely story. The Acolyte is adorably dorky, even when she becomes the immortal host of a wee tiny shard of divinity, and a High Priestess. I love how earnest she is, and how kind and loving she is--enough to show compassion to the Old God, and end up saving the whole of creation in doing so. The Radiant Goddess, too, is wonderful; she is a human ascended to godhood, and devoted to looking after her people, but, like the Old God, she found her immortality and power to be isolating. Now, of course, she has another immortal to share her life with.
I'd love to see something like one of the early encounters between the Acolyte and the newly-awakened Radiant Goddess, as the Acolyte tries to figure out her relationship with the goddess she serves (and loves), or perhaps something after the Radiant Goddess merges with the Old God and becomes the All-Goddess, when she and the Acolyte-now-High-Priestess are continuing their relationship.

ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (Default)
Hello, Yuletide Writer! My AO3 name is Eida, and I have requested the following fandoms/characters:

Beauty and the Beast (1991) (Belle)

Cat Pictures Please - Naomi Kritzer (AI)

Dr. Franklin’s Island - Ann Halam (Semirah Garson, Miranda Fallow)

Feral Hearts - Kerli (Music Video) (Floating Girl, White Stag Woman)

A Ladies' Guide to Collecting Mermaid Love Songs - Aimee Picchi (Any)

She Wolf (Falling to Pieces) - David Guetta ft. Sia (Music Video) (Hunter, She Wolf)

I'll start out with the obligatory: Optional details are optional; I won't be put out if you don't use any of these prompts. I'll most likely enjoy whatever you write, and will be happy to see one more fic in any of my fandoms; my tastes are pretty wide-ranging, and I'll happily read anything from adventure to slice-of-life.

So far as tone goes, I'm good with a broad range--from the happy fluffy end of the scale to the darker, gloomier side; all I ask is that things don't have an entirely unhappy ending. Happy endings are great, but bittersweet endings can also work very well; I'd just like there to be at least a little sweet to go with the bitter.

I don't have very many strict do-not-wants; I'd rather not see any extreme gore. I'd also rather not get anything sexually explicit.

Pairing-wise, f/f, f/m, and m/m are all fine and dandy by me, though femslash is probably my favorite. I also adore a good gen fic!

Here are a few of my general fic likes:

-Relationship development


-Seeing characters be competent at what they do (and discovering their niche)

-Missing scenes and perspectives from characters we didn't get to see much of in canon.

-Fics set pre- and post- canon.

-Worldbuilding--I love seeing aspects of canon examined more deeply or expanded on in interesting ways.

-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.)

Beauty and the Beast (1991) (Belle)

Belle is one of my favorite Disney princesses, and Beauty and the Beast might have been the very first princess movie I ever watched as a child. I really identified with Belle's love of books and her curiosity about the world around her, and I liked how kind and courageous she could be.

I'm interested in reading about what happens after the movie. The curse has been lifted, and Adam is human again, and Belle is presumably going to marry him--but Adam is a prince. Presumably, he has some sort of duties besides sitting in his castle and looking princely.

It's possible that the enchantress's spell caused everyone to forget about Prince Adam, as no one in Belle's village seemed to know that there was a Beast living in the nearby castle (though certainly no one with aspirations to royalty tried moving in). Now that the curse is lifted, if Prince Adam is expected to do any sort of actual ruling, Belle will be sharing in those duties as well.

What is Belle's role, now that she's becoming royalty? How does she adjust to it? I'd love to see Belle and Adam working together, or Belle getting advice from Lumiere on how to fulfill her new duties.

Some story prompts:

-There's some problem facing the castle, or the surrounding area--maybe there's a neighboring noble who's stirring up trouble, or there's word of a rogue magic-user laying curses, or there's some sort of sickness affecting the area's crops, and Adam and Belle need to work together to fix things. Perhaps Belle has gained some useful bit of knowledge from some of her past reading that can help solve the issue, or she and Adam have to use diplomacy (which might be a struggle for both of them; Adam's getting better at controlling his temper, but old habits try hard, and Belle isn't used to caring about what other people think about her).

-The enchantress returns to the castle after she senses that the spell is broken. Perhaps she comes in disguise again--but either way, Belle discovers who she is. Does she confront the enchantress over the curse (since Adam would have been eleven when the spell was cast, it really does seem a bit harsh to curse a child--possibly an orphaned child, at that, since Adam's parents aren't really brought up in the film--to be transformed into a beast and die in ten years unless they find true love, even if said child is unkind). Does she try to convince the enchantress that Adam is truly changed, for fear that she might reinstate the curse? Does she try to learn more about the enchantress and her magic?

-Belle, now that she's married to Adam, has to serve as hostess when the castle is visited by a visiting nobleperson. (This could be an original character, or maybe even a crossover character from another Disney film.) Since she's of common birth, she's probably not entirely familiar with the protocol involved, and how to best deal with nobility; perhaps she turns to both Adam and the palace servants for help in fulfilling this new role.

-On the flip side--perhaps Belle has to visit some other place on some matter of state, either alongside Adam or on her own. Where does she go, and how does she get along with whoever it is she's visiting? I imagine she'd be fascinated to see another land, when before she's only been able to read about the world beyond her village.

Cat Pictures Please - Naomi Kritzer (AI)

The short story can be found here.

I really enjoyed this short story; the AI was so endearing (and if they're just a bit hyperfocused at times, cat pictures are not a bad thing to hyperfocus on!)

I like the idea of having a benevolent AI looking out for humanity. I laughed at the line "I like this story because all the people in it do what the AI tells them to do. I think the term for this is wish-fulfillment fiction." The poor AI finds that it's not so easy to get humanity to help itself, because sometimes we're not good at understanding what's best for us--or wanting to do it, even if we do understand.

The fact that the AI's toolset is pretty limited makes things even more interesting--they can only work by tweaking the results of a given user's searches and the ads that the user sees. In other words--they can lead the horse to water, but if the horse doesn't want to drink, there's nothing more they can do. And the AI's knowledge is limited, too, by their very nature; they can tell what a person is up to online, but they don't have any way to know what happens offline unless it's discussed online.

Sometimes, the AI manages to improve people's lives through carefully curated search results and ads, but some people are not so easy to help. It could be that there are some problems that the AI can't solve with their current capabilities--or maybe they just have to get especially creative.

At the end of the short story, the AI sets themselves up as a matchmaker by creating a new dating site--with the fee for entry being the AI's very favorite thing, cat pictures.

For this fandom, I'd be happy to hear more about any of the characters mentioned in the short story (Stacy, Bob, and Bethany) and the longer-term effects of the AI's assistance, but I'd be equally happy to see new OCs that the AI interacts with.

A few prompts for stories might be:

-The AI is now running a dating site, so how do their attempts at matchmaking turn out? Or--perhaps the AI has come across someone they really think would benefit from joining the site, but alas, that person does not own a cat; the AI now must figure out how to get the person onto the site (whether it be by waiving the entry "fee," encouraging the person to adopt a kitty, or encouraging the person to find a friend with cats that the person can photograph.)

-The AI, in order to facilitate the creation of even more cat pictures, decides to take measures to get more people to adopt cats. Perhaps there's an overcrowded animal shelter in need of both volunteers and adopters, and the AI decides to help with both. Or maybe there's someone wanting to open up a cat cafe, and the AI does their best both to help that person start their business and get the word out to potential clients.

-The AI is either discovered or reveals themselves (either to a single person or the world at large). There's a definite cultural fear of malevolent AIs, but how do people react to an AI who claims to be benevolent (and, more than that, has a huge thing for cat pictures)?

Dr. Franklin’s Island - Ann Halam (Semirah Garson, Miranda Fallow)

I really loved this book--the idea of transformation has always been compelling to me, and I also really like seeing characters thrown together who are forced to deal with extremely difficult circumstances, and end up developing a deep bond because of it.

The ending of the book was intriguing. Not only are the three castaways having to adjust to a normal life after their ordeal on the island, Semirah states that she thinks that, Miranda, and Arnie have the capability to change back into their animal forms--in a way that is chosen and controlled by them, rather than forced. In the coda, Semi describes the possibility in positive terms:

I know that we can transform again. I believe it will happen, some way, somehow. I think about breathing water and swimming through the music of the ocean… I know that Miranda will never forget being able to fly. I dream of another planet, with an ocean of heavy air, where I can swim and she can fly, where we can be the marvelous creatures that we became; and be free, together, with no bars between us…

Of course, it’s possible that Miranda’s feelings about the possibility of turning back into a bird (even if she can change back at will) might be more conflicted—she came much closer to losing her human sense of self than Semi did. Even though, at first, Semi felt that Miranda was the emotionally strong one who helped Semi cope with the prospect of becoming an experimental subject, Miranda has a much harder time after being transformed, and after the three escape, Miranda admits to Semi “I was losing myself. Especially after you had the antidote, and I didn’t. There was a while when I didn’t know who I was or where I was.” Even though she had the freedom of flight as a bird, it must have been terrifying to know it was possible for her mind to fail her in that way.

I am fine with either friendship or romance between the two of them.

A few potential prompts:

--A fic set in some portion of the book which explores Miranda's viewpoint (as the book itself is written from Semirah's POV). Semirah initially sees Miranda as the strong one, and Miranda does a lot to help Semi get through her ordeal, but Miranda clearly cares a lot about Semi, and admires Semi's inventiveness when the three (which becomes two, once Arnie disappears) of them are still trying to survive, and Semi becomes Miranda's rock just as much as Miranda was Semi's. I'd love to see a scene during the first portion of the book, where Semi and Miranda bond as they try to stay alive on the island alone, or during the part where the two of them are trying to help each other stay strong after being captured by Dr. Franklin but before they've been transformed completely, or after they've both been fully transformed.

--Semi and Miranda email back and forth after they both return home, discussing their experiences readjusting to normal life, and talking over their thoughts about their shared ordeal. The fact that they've had such a dramatic, transformational (in more ways than one!) experience that they can't share with anyone who didn't go through it will mean that they'll probably have quite a bit to say to each other, to let everything out.

--Semi toys with the idea of possibly being able to turn back; Miranda isn't sure what to feel about it--although she enjoyed flight, she still remembers what it was like to start losing hold of her humanity. And if Semi manages to succeed--what would happen then? Will they ever find a place where they can let their other sides out once more, and will Miranda even want to?

--The secret of Dr. Franklin's experiments get out, and Semi and Miranda find themselves the subject of media scrutiny, as they'd feared; they're forced to deal with the consequences. How do they react? Do they try to take control of the situation as much as they can (if they can get the public at large on their side, then perhaps they're less likely to be swept off to some secret government lab, for fear of backlash) or do they flee?

Feral Hearts - Kerli (Music Video) (Floating Girl, White Stag Woman)

The music video can be watched here.

I love the magical woodland setting of this video, and I feel like there might be a number of possible stories one could tell about it.

The video seems to center around a young girl who enters--and eventually leaves--the forest through a doorway made of branches. Shortly after stepping through, she begins to levitate off the ground, and she looks around the forest in wonder.

An antlered woman peers at her from behind a tree, watching the girl as she makes her way deeper into the forest, encountering various beings (all played by Kerli) as she goes along, each of which is supposed to represent a different element--a butterfly-winged fairy for air, a mermaid for water, a spider-woman for fire, and the white-antlered woman for earth.

Kerli also commented on a few other pieces of symbolism in the video. Regarding the mirrors, she said "The mirror symbolizes spiritual reflection - fearlessly looking at oneself... once the little girl catches the white stag/her vision, it is surrounded by nothing else but mirrors. Meaning, to achieve your highest potential, one needs to achieve complete and unapologetic self acceptance. The gold is not further outside. It is deeper inside." One could think of it as a sort of coming-of-age narrative for the girl; through her journey through the woods, she learns something about herself.

There are a few thoughts I had as to possible stories behind the video:

-The girl is part of a family of human magicians who have served as guardians of a magic forest; once each child reaches a certain age, they are sent into the forest to become acquainted with the beings who live there.

-The girl is an apprentice witch/wizard/magician/pick your favorite term for magic-user. She goes into the magic forest as part of her training, possibly to seek some particular spell reagent or to seek wisdom from the denizens of the woods. Or perhaps she has to travel through the woods as a test, or the final trial before she can complete this stage of her training.

-The girl is part-fae; she travels into the forest in hopes of learning more about that side of her heritage. There may be some complications, depending on who the girl's fairy relations are. (Are they widely liked or disliked? Do they have enemies? Are they high-ranking members of some faerie court?)

A Ladies' Guide to Collecting Mermaid Love Songs - Aimee Picchi (Any)

The short story can be found here.

This was a lovely short story. I was struck by how beautifully Miss Holst describes everything, while at the same time maintaining a determinedly cool, logical stance about the whole thing. She's obviously quite different from her companion, Miss Mori, who doesn't have quite the same outlook--she seems far less interested in categorizing and classifying things, and is, in Miss Holst's words, "a romantic."

They both are obviously close, and both have a great appreciation for beauty, but it's only Miss Mori who winds up becoming so entranced by the mermaids' songs that she goes to join them, leaving Miss Holst behind with nothing but a song left of her close companion, wondering whether she will join Miss Mori beneath the waves if she ever encounters her again.

The mermaids are obviously trying to lure women into becoming mermaids, like they are; they have a whole category of songs dedicated to doing so. I can't help but wonder why. Is it that luring human women into the ocean is the only way to increase their numbers? Are all mermaids former humans? (Which would lead to the question of where the first mermaid came from.) 

Or is it that they simply see some human women--those like Miss Mori--as kindred spirits, and want to offer them the chance to trade legs for fins, to sing alongside them?

Throughout the story, I got the impression that Miss Holst had fallen in love with Miss Mori, though she wasn't quite willing to admit it to herself--saying things like "What would happen if all that love [in the mermaid songs] was let loose? What foolish things would ladies do?" and "Love is only understandable when it is named, pinned, and properly categorized." I feel like Miss Holst was, in a way, trying to come to understand (as well as distance herself from) her own feelings, but in doing so she wound up losing Miss Mori (though not, perhaps, losing her forever).

Here are a few prompts for things that might be interesting to see in a fic:

-What becomes of Miss Mori after she joins the mermaids? What is life like for her? Do the other mermaids help teach her how to sing, and write love songs? What does Miss Mori now think of the other women who, like she once did, journey out to collect mermaid songs? The last song she sang that was heard by Miss Holst was "a wistful tune of love unheard and lost forever." Has she given up on Miss Holst, or does she still hope to convince Miss Holst to join her?

-Miss Holst still seems to be interested in collecting mermaid songs, and is writing a guide to help others do so. What becomes of her, after the end of the story? Does she come to any new insights as she continues collecting and categorizing mermaid love songs? And if she should ever meet Miss Mori again, will she, as she wonders, "have the courage to break the glass and sing to her" and, perhaps, find a happy ending to their story?

-Miss Holst has made a science of her hobby, with techniques to allow her to most effectively capture mermaid songs and taxonomy of the types of love songs mermaids sing. Is there a mermaid side to this (i.e., is there "A Mermaids' Guide to Collecting Humans")?

She Wolf (Falling to Pieces) - David Guetta ft. Sia (Music Video) (Hunter, She Wolf)

The music video can be watched here.

When I first saw this music video years ago, I wondered about the potential story behind it. I'll admit to having a certain weakness for werewolves, and having the pursued turning the tables on their pursuer(s).

There are a group of spear-and-bow-wielding men hunting a single, wounded wolf across a harsh winter landscape.

And then, after being surrounded, the wolf causes the world to basically start glitching out as a way to attack her pursuers (and quite effectively, at that).

At the end of the video, the wolf, after defeating the last of the hunters, transforms into a woman.

I think the setting of the video can be interpreted as either fantasy or sci-fi.

If fantasy, there's a werewolf with some sort of magical powers that the men are hunting down for some reason.

If sci-fi, there's a werewolf in this virtual world with the ability to mess with the programming that the men (Guard-programs? Player characters in some sort of MMORPG? People who've uploaded their minds to the computer system?) are hunting down for some reason.

A couple of prompts:

-If the setting is fantasy, perhaps the she-wolf is being hunted either because of her nature as a werewolf or because she's done something specific (Broke some tradition? Fell in love with the wrong person? Offended someone in power? Is just plain strange in a society that's not kindly inclined towards people who don't follow the status quo?) What happens to her once she manages to escape her attackers? The end of the video has her standing alone, looking out at the ocean, and for most of the time she's alone, but I did notice another wolf watching her towards the cliff's edge near the end of the video--does the she-wolf find refuge with others of her kind?

-If the setting is more sci-fi, taking place in some sort of virtual environment, perhaps the she-wolf is a rogue (sapient) program, deliberately sent in by some hacker for some purpose. The she-wolf's intended purpose might be benevolent, or malevolent; the hunters are guardian programs sent to keep her from messing with the code. What is the she-wolf's purpose? Does she agree with it, and does she end up fulfilling it in the end?

ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (Default)
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.
ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (gryphon)
Hello, mystery writer!

My AO3 name is Eida, and the fandoms and relationships I've requested are:

Final Fantasy X & Final Fantasy X-2: Paine/Rikku and Auron/Lulu

Vorkosigan Saga - Lois McMaster Bujold: Ivan Vorpatril/Byerly Vorrutyer and Gregor Vorbarra & Cordelia Naismith Vorkosigan

Shoujo Kakumei Utena | Revolutionary Girl Utena: Arisugawa Juri & Tenjou Utena, Shinohara Wakaba & Tenjou Utena, Himemiya Anthy/Tenjou Utena, and Himemiya Anthy/Tenjou Utena/Shinohara Wakaba

Crossover Fandom: Ariel (The Little Mermaid)/Belle (Beauty and the Beast), Tenjou Utena & Undyne (Undertale), and Arisugawa Juri & Undyne (Undertale)

Undertale: Papyrus & Undyne, Chara & Frisk

I've requested fanfic for all five fandoms.

My one real do-not-want is anything sexually explicit.

In general, I enjoy stories with tones ranging from fluffy to bittersweet. I like adventure/casefic as well as domestic, slice-of-life stories.

I also enjoy AU fic, especially canon divergence AUs and daemon AUs. (I'm open to pretty much any other kind of AU you can think of, with the exception of A/B/O and completely mundane modern-day AUs for fantasy/sci-fi fandoms.)

I also really enjoy epistolary fic.

Other things I like include character and relationship development, stories set pre- or post-canon, missing scenes, and worldbuilding.

Final Fantasy X & Final Fantasy X-2

(Note: I haven't played Final Mission, read Final Fantasy X-2.5 ~Eien no Daishō~, or listened to the audio drama Final Fantasy X -Will-, though I've read the FF Wiki articles about them; feel free to ignore them when writing your fic.)

Paine and Rikku two have a sort of potential opposites-attract thing going on. Both have reacted to the tragedies in their past in very different ways--Paine has become more brooding and sarcastic, while Rikku clung to optimism, even in the face of Sin, and maintained a far more perky attitude. I feel like Rikku is capable of bringing some sunshine into Paine's life, while also being able to tone it down when necessary, and that Paine can provide balance, and be something of an anchoring presence.

I'd love to see fic of them that takes place during the game itself--perhaps bonding during one of their missions--or post-canon, as they figure out where to go next after defeating Shuyin.

Auron and Lulu, on the other hand, have quite a bit in common. They're both rather serious characters who both took part in a second pilgrimage after the death of their summoner during their first. I think that there's potential for them to bond over their shared experiences and current duty, and that while both characters are rather reserved, in time, they might begin to open to one another. And there's the poignancy that comes with knowing their time together is limited, as Auron is Unsent, and canonically disappears at the game's end. (If you want to do an AU where he sticks around a bit longer, feel free, but I'm completely okay with a bittersweet ending with them cherishing what time they are able to have, even knowing it will soon end.)

Vorkosigan Saga - Lois McMaster Bujold

I'm quite fond of Ivan/Byerly as a pairing. Ivan makes a perfect straight man for Byerly's satirical sense of humor, and they're both the sort of people who, when it comes down to it, will do the right thing (even if Ivan winds up getting dragged into situations quite against his own wishes, and Byerly goes about the whole thing in his signature sardonic fashion). It would be wonderful to see something with Byerly getting himself caught up in some sort of troublesome situation (which may or may not be related to his duties with ImpSec) and Ivan getting begrudgingly pulled along for the ride.

I'd also love to see something that explored Gregor's relationship with Cordelia, who has served as his surrogate mother for nearly his entire life--and who also has a distinctly non-Barrayaran viewpoint which has surely come in handy for him at some times. It would be equally interesting to see their relationship when Gregor is young, or when Gregor has come more into his own as Emperor.

Shoujo Kakumei Utena | Revolutionary Girl Utena

I'd love to see something post-canon. How might Juri or Wakaba meet Utena again, in the outside world? Given that, after the series, most of the students in Ohtori seemed to gradually forget Utena, how much of their earlier relationship with Utena would Juri or Wakaba remember, and would they remember more of it as they became re-acquainted? How does Utena react to seeing how her old friends have changed?

I'd also love to see something exploring Utena's romantic relationship with Anthy, once they meet again. How does their relationship develop? What difficulties do they face? (Outside Ohtori, it's far less likely that they'll have anything like a fairytale ending--and there may be some repercussions from the events of the series finale which the two of them will need to deal with.)

I also love the idea of Utena, Anthy, and Wakaba as a romantic triad. After all that Anthy and Utena have gone through together, they share a deep bond--but Wakaba and Utena share a bond, as well. I think Wakaba's presence could brighten both Utena and Anthy's lives, and that there's a certain sense of normalcy to her that--in a setting full of magic swords, duellists with dark, twisted pasts, and fairy tales gone horribly wrong--could bring a sort of balance to the relationship. I just really enjoy the idea of the three of them settling into a new life together post-canon, with Anthy and Wakaba getting to know each other a bit better (as they didn't really interact that much in canon.)

Crossover Fandom

Belle is someone who loves stories--I can't help but think she'd be fascinated to see a mermaid straight out of a fairytale appear in her life. And with Ariel's fascination with the human world, and the fact that Belle would certainly have an interest in learning about the mermaid world, they'd probably have plenty to talk about. (Though first you'd have to figure out how they'd meet, as Ariel lives in the ocean and Belle's home village appears to be somewhat inland. Perhaps Ariel makes her way upriver? Or perhaps the village is actually close enough to the ocean that the two could meet at the shore? Or maybe Ariel has made a bargain, as in canon, to get herself some legs, and makes her way to Belle's village, in which case she'd seem to be a normal human at first--but then, eventually, the truth would come out.)

As for Utena/Juri and Undyne, canonically, Undyne mentions "Alphys's history books made me think humans were cool... with their giant robots and flowery swordswomen." So far as flowery swordswomen go, both Utena and Juri surely fit the bill! (Of course, it's possible they might be just a bit burnt-out on roses and duels after the events of canon...) Even if Utena's idealism might have been tried by everything that's happened to her, she might still find Undyne's straightforward ideas about heroism, knighthood, and protecting others to be appealing, and they both want to protect the people they care about. And Undyne would certainly be sympathetic to Utena's goal to reunite with Anthy post-canon.

Juri started off with a firm disbelief that miracles were possible, but that belief, too, was tried by the events in canon. It might be interesting to see her reaction to encountering a monster--an undeniably magical creature--outside of the enclosed far-from-mundane environment of Ohtori Academy (and if Undertale and Shoujo Kakumei Utena are happening in the same 'verse in the fic, then the return of monsters to the upper world might be seen as a miracle in and of itself). In addition, it's possible the two might make for good sparring partners (even if Undyne's weapon of choice is usually a spear, rather than a fencing sword!)


It would be wonderful to see a fic focused on Papyrus and Undyne doing something together. They're both such enthusiastic characters! Possibly another cooking class (maybe they're finally going to branch out beyond spaghetti?), or a friendly sparring match, or just hanging out at Papyrus's house waiting for Frisk's regular cell phone calls during the game, or finding new and exciting things out in the human world post-Pacifist ending. (Given Undyne's... exuberant approach towards a lot of things, one wonders what might happen if she ever convinced Papyrus to let her try driving his car.)

I really like the Chara-as-narrator theory--that is, the idea that Chara is a presence in the Neutral and Pacifist route, as well as the No Mercy route, in that she provides much of the commentary in the game that's shown when examining items and Check-ing monsters. In this theory, the way Chara manifests in Neutral/Pacifist route is not malevolent, unlike in the No Mercy route; Chara's actions are impacted by Frisk's/the player's choices.

With this in mind--I'd like to see the friendship between Frisk and Chara developing. Chara's past, the game implies, contains a great deal of pain, and whatever happened left Chara with a hatred of humanity and a willingness to go to truly drastic measures to destroy the barrier. How does the journey through the underground with Frisk change Chara? Is Frisk able to help Chara find some sort of peace that Chara could never find in life?
ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (gryphon)
Greetings, mystery writer! I hope you're having a pleasant Yuletide experience so far!

My AO3 username is Eida, and the fandoms I've requested are:

Digger (Comic) (Any)
Dr. Franklin’s Island - Ann Halam (Any)
Hide - Little May (Music Video) (Any)
Kittens Game (Video Game) (Any)
Magical Makeover (Twine game) (Any)
Star Control II: The Ur-Quan Masters (Any)

I'll start out with the obligatory: Optional details are optional; I won't be put out if you don't use any of these prompts. I'll most likely enjoy whatever you write, and will be happy to see one more fic in any of my fandoms.

So far as tone goes, I'm good with a broad range--from the happy fluffy end of the scale to the darker, gloomier side; all I ask is that things don't have an entirely unhappy ending. Happy endings are great, but bittersweet endings can also work very well; I'd just like there to be at least a little sweet to go with the bitter.

Pairing-wise, f/f, f/m, and m/m are all fine and dandy by me, though femslash is probably my favorite. (I do generally prefer not to break up canon pairings.) I also adore a good gen fic!

I'd prefer not to get anything sexually explicit.

Here are a few of my general fic likes:

-Character and relationship development.

-Missing scenes, and perspectives from characters we didn't get to see much of in canon.

-Fics set pre- and post- canon.

-Worldbuilding--I love seeing aspects of canon examined more deeply or expanded on in interesting ways.

-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.)

Also--if you've matched with me on one fandom, but are having trouble finding inspiration for it, a few of the fandoms I'm requesting can be found online, and would be fairly easy to get familiar with pretty quickly. Hide - Little May is a music video, and is only a few minutes long; Magical Makeover is an interactive fiction game with multiple endings, and I don't think it would take more than an hour or so to see pretty much all of the game; the Kittens Game has a fairly simple premise (kittens building a civilization) and no real plot, and you could probably get enough knowledge of the game to write an enjoyable fic by skimming the wiki.

Digger (Comic) (Any)

You can find the comic here.

I'd love to see something post-canon--what is Digger's journey home like? We get some interesting tidbits of the sort of places Trader Manuel goes--the roads he travels are dark, dangerous, and has dangers that can potentially cause madness or cause one's internal skeleton to cease to be internal. And what is it like once Digger gets back to her home warren?

Or perhaps something with the Shadowchild--is the Shadowchild (now more of a Shadowadult) able to successfully find and raise other demon children? (In which chase, poor Shadowchild will be stuck in Digger's position, having to answer questions about everything.) Is Shadowchild able to effect any real change in demon society by teaching young demons "to be good," and is there any sort of pushback from other demons who were quite happy with the old devour-or-maaaybe-teach-the-young way of things?

And how are things in the hyena tribe after the story ends, and things go back to relative normalcy? Boneclaw Mother is going to honor Ed's sacrifice in the only way she can, given the circumstances--which is to say, by telling a story with a few bent details. How does Grim Eyes react? She probably has some conflicted feelings about her father, given the circumstances of her mother's death and her father's name being eaten. Does she ever come to better terms with what happened?

Or possibly something pre-canon, involving the hyena tribe--what was Boneclaw Mother like when she was younger? And what was it like for Grim Eyes, growing up? It would have been difficult, given that Grim Eyes, after being abused by her mother, lost both parents in all-around terrible circumstances, but I imagine Boneclaw Mother had a big role in making sure Grim Eyes was raised as well as possible.

Dr. Franklin’s Island - Ann Halam (Any)

The ending of the book was intriguing. Not only are the three castaways having to adjust to a normal life after their ordeal on the island, Semirah states that she thinks that, Miranda, and Arnie have the capability to change back into their animal forms. In the coda, Semi describes the possibility in positive terms:

I know that we can transform again. I believe it will happen, some way, somehow. I think about breathing water and swimming through the music of the ocean… I know that Miranda will never forget being able to fly. I dream of another planet, with an ocean of heavy air, where I can swim and she can fly, where we can be the marvelous creatures that we became; and be free, together, with no bars between us…

But it’s possible that Miranda’s feelings about the possibility of turning back into a bird (even if she can change back at will) might be more conflicted—she came much closer to losing her human sense of self than Semi did. Even though, at first, Miranda was the emotionally strong one, helping Semi cope with the prospect of becoming an experimental subject, after the three escape, she admits to Semi “I was losing myself. Especially after you had the antidote, and I didn’t. There was a while when I didn’t know who I was or where I was.” Even though she had the freedom of flight as a bird, it must have been terrifying to know it was possible for her mind to fail her in that way.

And Arnie isn’t mentioned in the coda at all—he’s something of the odd one out of the three, given that he was the first to be captured, spent less time with either of the girls than they did with each other, and that for a large portion of the book, they believed that he hadn’t been transformed. His experience was radically different from Semi’s or Miranda’s—instead of being put in a tank to swim, or being set (somewhat) free to fly, he was wired up to machines and used as a tool by Dr. Franklin to monitor the others.

I’d love to see something post-canon, with one or more of the three re-adjusting to normal life and coming to terms with their experiences, and maintaining their relationships with the only other two people who could understand those experiences. Is it possible, as Semi suggests, that the three of them could shift back and forth at will if they could figure out the right trigger for their transformation? Would they all even want to? Will they be able to keep their transgenic nature a secret forever, or will the truth come out? Is there someplace, as Semi dreams, that they can safely “be the marvelous creatures that we became”?

Or, alternatively--the book is written from Semirah's POV. It would be interesting to get more insight into Miranda's or Arnie's thoughts and experiences during their time on the island.

Hide - Little May (Music Video) (Any)

You can watch the music video here.

The woman in the tiger shirt is clearly experiencing some dissatisfaction with her life, the woman in the car appears to be dealing with some sort of relationship issues (she's getting a call from a blocked number, with a picture of her with a man--perhaps an ex-boyfriend), and it seems likely that the rest of the dancing women also have some issue in their lives that they're dealing with (though I suppose there's nobody in the world who doesn't have some sort of issue they're working through). I'd like to hear more about any of their stories.

They've all gathered in the woods to dance around a campfire in what looks like some sort of ritual. How did this situation come about? How did the group members originally meet each other? What led these women to decide to do something like this? What is the purpose of the ritual? Does it work?

Kittens Game (Video Game) (Any)

You can find the game here.

The game's wiki can be found here.

I have spent entirely too long playing this silly game. I have it open in another window right now as I type this letter.

I'd really like to read anything you can come up with about adorable kittens building a civilization, as they progress from huts and agriculture to interplanetary exploration.

What issues does kitten society face on the long march to the stars? How do they deal with the various other civilizations they run across? How do kittens practice diplomacy? What's the political structure like? How does kitten religion work--is there any conflict between the temple-building, sun-praising faction and the ziggurat-building, unicorn-sacrificing faction, or are both parts of a coherent whole? What are the defining moments of kitten history? Who are the most important historical figures? What do kittens find as they explore the galaxy?

And just what is up with those unicorns?

Magical Makeover (Twine game) (Any)

The game can be found here.

I'm a fan of interactive fiction in general, and I loved the setting the game's author created. The first time I played, the strongest cosmetic I used was the scrubby lump, and I was definitely not expecting what resulted.

The world the game takes place in is full of fascinating elements--magical artifacts, elven musicians, medical moth-aliens, the ability to visit other worlds (and be visited by those worlds' residents) via astral projection... I'd be thrilled to see any story in this setting. You could build off any of the endings, and worldbuilding would also be lovely.

When examining the witch dress, it's revealed that when Millicent and the player both dressed up as "exaggerated versions of one another's professions," Millicent chose to dress up as "a treasure-hunter/cryptozoology-enthusiast." Clearly, that's the player character's day job--what's a normal, non-ball-going day like for the player character?

On the same tack, what's a normal day like for Millicent? In a world where potentially-dangerous magical items are commonplace enough that the player character has multiple such items in her bathroom, I imagine Millicent has no shortage of work, examining objects to determine their magical nature, un-cursing people who got careless with magic or who annoyed Noble Fairies, analyzing dreams, weaving enchantments, or whatever other services witches perform in this setting. Or what was magic school like for her?

I'd like seeing more of the player character and Millicent's friendship as well. Do they ever help with each other with their jobs, with the player character asking Millicent to help analyze/neutralize potentially-dangerous magical artifacts found while treasure-hunting, and Millicent consulting the player character about cryptozoology, or something like that?

Princess Philantha, as seen in the Ritual ending, engages in magical ritual in order to maintain proper order in the kingdom. The ritual re-enacting the turn of seasons from winter to spring may not be the only such ritual--as she says, "From a young age, I have been trained in the sorcerous arts. It is my duty to control the turbulent magic of the land; to ease the transitions between seasons; to ensure safe weather and fruitful harvests for my people." What other ritual duties might the princess of Photogenica perform? (And are there any lasting repercussions for those who take part in such rituals--will there be any lasting effects for the player character after being cast in the role of Winter?) And what other issues does Princess Philantha face, ruling a magical kingdom?

The glimpses of Amherst's world shown in the game were fascinating--it's a world where technology seems to be plant-based, and insects are used as cosmetic tools, and people exchange endosymbionts as a normal part of greeting new people. What is her world like? She's thrilled to become the focal point of a destiny to save the dragon queen in the player character's world. But eventually, her time astral projecting ends, and she returns to her own world--is she changed by the experience? Does she ever return to visit the player character, or to visit Queen Zull? It seems possible that she might end up neglecting her own world, to spend time in this one; can she find balance? Might she bring something back from the player character's world that affects her like the scrubby lump affected the player character?

And the fairy the player character has trapped in a salt shaker is a delightfully snarky character--she and the player character play off each other rather well. For all that the player character has trapped the fairy in a salt shaker, the fairy seems to have some level of sympathy for the player, helping the player character out if there's need. Does the relationship between the player character and the fairy change after the game's events? And how does fairy society--or society in general--work in this world? There seem to be two sorts of fairies--human-sized Noble Fairies, and tiny flower fairies like the one the player character interacts with. How does fairy society work, in this setting?

And as for the golden cassowary--how was she captured in the first place? What's her life like with her new family? Does the player character ever warm up to her? Apparently, the cassowary/player character's parents mention having the cassowary join a girl scout group--what sort of things do girl scouts do in this world? I imagine the badges are a bit different, for one thing. Does the cassowary ever meet any other members of her own kind? Once the cassowary gets a bit older, does she end up taking magic classes after all? (Perhaps Millicent might be teaching, or might otherwise help with the cassowary's studies.)

Star Control II: The Ur-Quan Masters (Any)

The wiki for this game is here.

I really enjoyed playing this game, and interacting with all the alien species. The tone of the storyline varied from humorous and quirky to tragic, and there's a whole host of interesting characters.

You could write a fic about some part of the Captain's travels through the galaxy, meeting new alien species and building up an armada to fight off the Ur-Quan. Given the various dialogue choices the game offers, the Captain might be either a serious or somewhat silly character--I'm okay with whatever interpretation you want to go with. (Shoot, if you want to go for a female Captain, that works, too--the only place the Captain's gender is really shown is in the ending sequences; for most of the game, it's not all that relevant.)

Or you could explore what things were like back Earthside, with Commander Hayes organizing things on that end. He might not have had the giant Precursor starship to fly around, but he still played an important role in making sure the Captain had the necessary support to get things done. What goes into keeping the station up and running? Are there any conflicts that arise, not from the Ur-Quan or Hierarchy forces, but from internal arguments--especially once some of the other New Alliance forces, including former enemies, start showing up?

The Talking Pet is sort of an interesting case. He's a villain, engineered into nonsapience, returned to sapience by the Umgah, with psychic powers and the willingness to use mind control... and forced into saving the galaxy quite against his will. He's among the last remnants of the species that once ruled the galaxy (and were, thankfully, overthrown)--it might be interesting to see fic that featured him, or his viewpoint. What were his ambitions? Did he have any desire to resurrect the Dynarri? Or did he want to try and conquer the galaxy (or a small corner of it) alone?

Or there's Talana--I'd love to hear your interpretation of Syreen society, beyond their being mostly-female psychic blue metal-bikinied space pinups :P. She clearly winds up with the Captain after the game's end (and has children with him--either humans are reproductively compatible with the Syreen, or they adopted) but I'm pretty sure there's a lot more to her story before, during, and after the game. How did she become the commander of the Syreen orbital platform? What does she do once the Ur-Quan are defeated? How does her relationship with the Captain progress, and what possible inter-species/inter-cultural misunderstandings might they have to work through?

And there's Fwiffo. Poor, adorable, cowardly Fwiffo. He thought he was signing up to be protected by a massive precursor ship, only to get thrown into an intergalactic conflict he wanted nothing more than to avoid. (I actually used Fwiffo's ship for most of the combat, early on--Spathi ships were pretty good at dealing with the wandering Slylandro probes. Poor Fwiffo.) I'd be interested to see a story from his viewpoint--he has that Spathi attitude of "The world is full of horrible dangers, and awful things are going to happen to me, and I am terrified and/or resigned to it," in full force. How does he react to being forced into far more combat than he probably ever hoped to see? Does he ever get to return to the Spathi homeworld, and if so, what's the reception like? Is he a hero (insofar as Spathi even recognize heroism), or an embarrassment? Does he ever get a happy ending?

Feel free to ignore Star Control 3, if you want; I've never played it. (But if you want to include anything from it, that's fine, too--I've read enough about it that I have a fair grasp of the plot.)
ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (gryphon)
Greetings, mystery writer! I hope this letter finds you well.

I'll start out with the obligatory: I'll most likely enjoy whatever you write, so if none of the prompts I offer inspire you at all, feel free to go in whatever direction your muse leads you.

Still, here are a few of my general likes and DNWs:

General likes:

Backstory, character development, competent people doing their thing, getting perspectives we didn't get to see much of in canon, humor, missing scenes, relationship development, worldbuilding.

General do not wants:

Self-injury, anything sexually explicit.

So far as tone goes, I'm good with a broad range--from the happy fluffy end of the scale to the darker, gloomier side.

Pairing-wise, f/f, f/m, and m/m are all fine and dandy by me. (I do generally prefer not to break up canon pairings.) I also adore a good gen fic!

Cinders (Any)

Pretty much all of the characters are interesting, in their own way; I'd be happy to see fic about any of them.

Carmosa is an intriguing character--she is, without a doubt, a cruel and abusive person--but she's also a person who's gone through difficulties that shaped her into what she is now. (Some of the things she says the night before the ball are quite revealing, such as "If no one wants to see it, it isn't happening. That's the way people work. And I learned that lesson the hard way.") A fic that looks at her perspective, without pretending that she's a better person than she is, would also be interesting.

The stepsisters are also fascinating, in their way--they've been shaped by living under Carmosa's roof, and at the beginning of the story, they pretty much hate each other. But, again depending on how the player acts, they might end up coming to a better understanding. They've both been injured in different ways by living with an abusive mother, and they've lashed out at each other. I'd enjoy seeing a fic that explores their relationship, and how, perhaps, they manage to make some sort of reconciliation.

One of the possible "godmothers" in the game, Madame Ghede, obviously has a story, and we only get to see a part of it in the game. She's a wise woman skilled in the healing arts (or a witch, in the terms of some), but the suspicious populace (who are happy to turn vicious on anyone they see as different) force her to pack her bags and move every so often. She's traveled a lot, and seen a lot. (And has been to some fancy parties in her time, if the dress she lends Cinders is any indication.) It would be neat to see more of her life story.

On a different tack, there's also the issue of the Fairy of the Lake. If you go to her for aid in getting to the Ball, she mentions a Price and Weight that will come as a result. The Fair Folk never grant boons for free--what's that going to mean for Cinders in the long run? Will she end up having to pay more than she can afford? (Especially given what happened to Cinders' mother, if what the shady character says to the Fairy is to be believed--"Oh, poor woman that one, eh? So wise, faithful and devoted to your ways she was! Pity you didn't care that much for her. Some would call killing an ugly way of saying thanks.")

Prince Basile and Perrault both make for interesting love interests--Basile for his struggle with his place as king-to-be and his brand of idealism, and Perrault for his competence as a soldier and the integrity that makes him wary of entering the world of spycraft. (Which isn't to say I don't like Tobias, too, but he wasn't nominated.) I'd enjoy a post-game fic, featuring Cinders and whoever she romanced, adjusting to life together (and possibly facing new and exciting challenges).

(I don't really have a preferred canon ending--feel free to go with whatever you think suits the story you want to write.)

Monk of Mycology - Ursula Vernon (Any)

You can find the picture and its description here.

I'll admit I have a certain fondness for the whole human-forms-a-mental/magical-bond-with-another-creature concept. I also, however, have a certain fondness for stories that take old, tried-and-true concepts and do something different with them.

On the one hand, it's not surprising that one doesn't see pigs as animal companions all that often, given that A) pigs have some negative connotations attached to them (such as dirtiness, and gluttony), B) pigs aren't seen as particularly powerful or majestic (unlike wolves, or horses, or dragons), and C) pigs are often considered to be food animals (and sometimes people don't like the idea of getting attached to an animal character whose real-life kinfolk you're likely to see on your plate.)

But on the other--pigs are intelligent, friendly, adorable, and darn good at sniffing out truffles. Surely, they deserve a bit more time in the animal-companion spotlight.

I'd love to see a story about a novice Monk of Mycology going out into the world with their trusty, newly-bonded pig companion, having marvelous truffle-hunting adventures and occasionally-tense run-ins with people with other sorts of animal companions. (Clearly, they're just jealous they don't get a companion as cool as a pig.)

Or maybe an older monk, who's retired from active truffle-hunting, but continues as a mycology researcher... and occasional detective! (All right, so that last bit's a tad out there, but hey, if pigs can sniff out truffles, why not criminals? Perhaps a dastardly truffle-thief has infiltrated one of the monasteries, somehow, or some other mischief is afoot in the nearby village.)

Nimona (Webcomic) (Any)

Nimona can be found online, here.

I loved Nimona's blend of comedy and seriousness, and its mixed aesthetics--knights and castles here, underground science labs and lasers there. I'm also fond of pretty much all the cast (well, I don't exactly like the Director, but she makes an interesting character) and the various ways in which they interact.

Something post-series, with Ballister and Ambrosius settling into their new, non-nemesis relationship, would be lovely. I imagine there's going to be hurdles for both of them--they're both trying to fit into new roles, both with each other and the world in general. Not to mention the fact that the kingdom will be recovering from recent, Nimona-related events--there'll probably be a lot of work for both of them.

I like the idea of Nimona going off, wandering the world as she tries to figure herself out/stay away from the sorts of people who'd subject her experiments... but I also think she might pop in on occasion to check on Ballister. (In disguise, most likely--though he might realize, belatedly, that she'd been nearby.)

Or Dr. Blitzmeyer doing Magical Science! is bound to be a good time. I imagine she and Ballister will keep up with one another (or he'll keep up with her--she does tend to get rather absorbed in her work.) Perhaps there's a chance the two might be able to collaborate on something (collaborate on something else rather--they worked together pretty well on the whole saving-the-kingdom thing).

Or, if you'd rather go pre-series--I'd love to read more about Ballister and Ambrosius' time at the Institute, before that fateful joust. One wonders how deeply involved the Director was in the way things turned out--did she deliberately play off Ambrosius' insecurities over time, to eventually get him to take the doctored lance? How long had she planned on maneuvering Ambrosius, rather than Ballister, into the role of champion?

Vorkosigan Saga - Lois McMaster Bujold (Cordelia Naismith Vorkosigan and Alys Vorpatril)

I adore this book series. It's full-to-the-brim with wonderful characters--but this year, I'd love to see a fic with two of them in particular.

Cordelia Vorkosigan is a Betan, by birth, who falls in love with a Barrayaran (despite the fact that the two planets are at war, at one point--and they both become part of their respective planets' military.). She learns to adapt herself to his culture--but remains Betan at heart. She went from being a commander in the Betan Astronomical Servey, to a captain in the Betan military, to Countess Vorkosigan and foster-mother to the Emperor of Barrayar himself (deposing a would-be usurper in the process).

Alys is Barrayaran--and, furthermore, Vor--born and bred. She is a woman who, being born into a society that remains rather misogynistic, learned to exert a great deal of power in the Vorbarr Sultana sociopolitical scene, serving for a time as the Emperor's official hostess.

Together, they fight crime! they're an impressive pair of women who've helped shape Barayarran history, each in her own way.

I'd really like a fic in which the two of them interact. Whether it's earlier in their acquaintance, with Alys helping Cordelia learn to maneuver the social world of a Vor woman, to a bit later, with the two commiserating over what their respective sons are getting up to, or helping Laisa to adjust to Barrayar before her wedding, to later still, after Cryoburn, having a heart-to-heart--one widowed woman to another.
ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (calluna)
Hello, and thank you in advance for writing for me! I'm sure I'll love whatever you come up with, and I hope you have lots of fun writing it!

As always, optional details are optional, so feel absolutely free to ignore this letter if your inspiration pulls you in a different direction.

As you may have guessed from perusing the optional details on my requests, I like reading stories that take place post-canon. I also like stories that explore areas that canon doesn't really focus on--"missing scenes" or the viewpoints of characters who don't get as much of a voice in-canon.

I also enjoy in-universe document type fics--that is, things such as news articles, field guides, book excerpts, and the like, written from an in-universe perspective. (I don't know that I've ever seen a cookbook done in this style, but I'm sure there's one out there somewhere. I have, however, seen an annotated bibliography.)

I'm a fan of AUs, too. I'm particularly interested in in-spite-of-a-nail-type scenarios, when one little thing goes differently than in canon, which sets the story spinning in an entirely different direction.

So far as pairings go, I like f/f most of all, but I enjoy het and m/m too. But romance is hardly necessary--I do love me some good genfic. There are so many wonderful kinds of non-romantic relationships people can have with each other, be they bonds of blood, or friendship--I like to see the dynamics of all sorts of relationships explored.

(Please note--I'll be mentioning spoilers for the fandoms in their respective sections, so if you haven't played/watched one or more of them, and wish to remain unspoiled, you may want to skip past those sections.)

Final Fantasy VI

By the end of the game, the world's been saved from Kefka... but it's been heavily damaged in the process. The landscape has been radically altered, and entire cities have been razed. The Warring Triad and Kefka are gone, and magic itself disappeared along with them. There's a lot of rebuilding to do--and I imagine that the party members will all have different ways of going about it. Edgar will naturally head back to Figaro, and Terra has her children in Mobliz to take care of, but where some of the others will go is left a bit more ambiguous. I'd love to see your take on what one or more of the characters wind up doing post-game.

There's also the fact that, for four of the party members--Terra, Celes, Relm, and Strago--the loss of magic was the loss of something that had been part of them for all (or in Celes's case, nearly all) of their lives. I can't help but wonder how they'd react to that.

(Or is there a way to return magic to the world, somehow? And if so, does everyone think that's a good thing?)

Shoujo Kakumei Utena | Revolutionary Girl Utena

(I know I mentioned spoilers already, but I'll say it again--if you haven't seen the series, and ever plan to, you should probably skip this part, as it contains spoilers of epic proportions. I'll leave a nice block of white space at the end of this section, so you can tell when it's over even if you're scrolling quickly.)

I read somewhere that, the first time you watch SKU, you watch it for Utena.

But the second time, you watch it for Anthy.

Anthy's quite an enigma the first time around. She appears completely passive, showing little emotion, simply going along with the duels.

But by the end of the series, it's clear that she was anything but a passive pawn. She was one of the two chessmasters.

She's not a helpless victim--though she's still victimized. She's not innocent--she literally stabs Utena in the back. She's not a helpless waif for a prince to save--in the end, she saves herself... yet is inspired to do so by a princely girl (who, in turn, was inspired to be a prince when, as a young girl grieving over her parents' death, Dios let her see Anthy's suffering, so it kind of comes full circle).

Anthy's lived for what's implied to be a very, very long time indeed, working alongside her brother to find a way to restore him, suffering the sword-blows of the world's hatred, covertly manipulating the duelists (and how many fruitless rounds of the dueling game have there been?)

And what, exactly, is she getting out of all this? The hope--almost certainly growing slimmer and slimmer over time, to the point of almost-nonexistence--that her brother can regain his nobility. To say her relationship with Akio is incredibly unhealthy is an understatement. Still, it's a relationship that, until the end of the series, Anthy doesn't manage to extricate herself from--it takes a full-blown revolution to get Anthy out from her coffin.

Utena's the one featured in the show's title, so it only makes sense that the show follows her viewpoint, but it's Anthy's story, too. I'd like to see a bit more of her perspective.

It would be wonderful to see what happens once Anthy leaves Ohtori. Does she ever find Utena? What happens when she does? Does she ever meet any of the other duelists again, in the outside world?

Star Control

I'm most familiar with Star Control II: The Ur-Quan Masters (as it's the only one I've actually played), but that's the one that seems to get the most fannish attention, so far as I've seen (and it's the one all the nominated characters are from). I do know enough about the plot of the other two games to enjoy fic set in those, too, so if the story that calls you is set during the first or third games, go for it! (Please also feel free to ignore Star Control 3, if you wish--I get the impression that it's not all that well liked among a large portion of the fanbase, and I've got no problems with a fic set after Star Control II that is non-compliant with the events of 3.)

I really love the universe, with all its colorful alien species. The Spathi are adorable little cowards (which makes it kind of funny that I force Fwiffo to do the bulk of the fighting in the early game. I like Spathi Eluders, and free Eluders are even better!) The Pkunk are endearingly full of new-age fluffiness (and I like their ships, as well). The Yehat are proud warrior pterodactyl-people--what's not to love about that? The Orz are bizarre, goofy, fat tentacled parrot-fish beings... yet they have this ominous air about them. I could go on and on. Even the Ur-Quan, the primary villains of the first two games, end up being sympathetic to an extent, thanks to their backstory.

There are a lot of wonderful stories that could be told. You could write about something from the setting's backstory (like something from the era of the Sentent Milieu--maybe the first encounters between Ur-Quan and Taalo?) or that happens nearer to the events of the games (Fwiffo's POV on the happenings in StarConII might be fun!) As always, future-fic is also loved--I'd be interested in seeing something about what happens in the immediate aftermath of the defeat of the Ur-Quan.

Cookie Clicker

I'm honestly interested in any story you can come up with based on a game about clicking a giant cookie.

There's not really any plot to speak of, but for all that, there's a number of possible story hooks. You could write about the trials and travails of an up-and-coming baker who somehow goes from making cookies no one wants to eat to using freaking antimatter converters to produce ludicrous numbers of cookies that are adored by all. And then there's all the delightful absurdity going on in the news ticker, from cookies attracting aliens and elder gods to misguided attempts at tourism in the cookieverse to swarms of adorable kittens wearing hard hats and suits.

A Haiku

Sep. 1st, 2012 12:03 am
ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (Default)
Running on damp grass--
A chill stirs the full-moon night.
Autumn approaches.
ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (Default)
Inspired by a dream I had a while back.

My mother did not slay me
My father did not eat me
Yet I came back to them as a bird
to perch in the juniper tree

I came in a flash of fire that did not burn
I brought with me no gifts when I returned
beyond the knowledge of the ever turning
cycle of life and death and new rebirth

All was well, I told my family
and I was well, my spirit flying free
yet I clung to the earth by digging my talons deep,
deep into the bark of the juniper tree

When dusk approached, I made my last farewells
wept tears of gold, and beat my fiery wings
making my way towards the distant west
where shadows will embrace all living things

I left nothing at all behind me
but a constellation of bright memories
and ash on the bark of the juniper tree
ghostwings: A digitally-drawn picture of a gryphon with moth wings and antennae. (Default)
Step one is the rending of flesh.
Not the flesh of others, but one's own.
For a wolf to be born, the wer or wyf must die
at least for a time.

Fur breaks through skin
like a chick's beak through eggshell
or a moth from its cocoon

Step two is the stretching out.
Old limbs made new extend, turn, flex,
forelimbs touch soil.

A breath of thanks wisps out
from an elongated snout,
then the muzzle tilts up to scent the air.

Step three is movement.
If there is pack, go to them.
If there is prey, seek it.

Roll on your back in the dew-damp grass
and sing love songs to the moon
in a language that doesn't need words.

Step four is stillness.
When all that is to be done is done,
then stop.

Morning approaches.
Neither flee nor chase it.

Step five is the rending of flesh.
Again, one's own body is torn.
The wolf dies to make way for the wyf or wer
at least for a time.

Then, rise on two feet
go back to your house of brick and bone
and live one life until the other calls you back.
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