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December meme #2

[personal profile] sholio asked for today: a narrative trope you like, and what makes it appealing to you?

Man, this is SO HARD. Because I have so many tropes I love. I don't have anything like a bulletproof kink, but I have a few things that come close. But tropes I love abound. Cabin in the woods during a snow storm or desert island? I'm there! Fake marriage/dating/undercover and falling in love? Yes, please! Life and love during wartime? Sir, yes sir. Timey-wimey stuff? THE BEST. Especially Groundhog Day/time loops (well, obviously, she said). Really, there's too many to list.

But if I have to pick one, I'd probably say friends becoming lovers, especially if it's wrapped up in pining and longing. I have a big thing about equality, that my pairings and friendships are usually based in people being at least sort of equal in most things. I think it's why bdsm doesn't do anything for me, or why I react so badly to stories that infantalize a character (which is a huge problem in a lot of Captain America fic, where they make Bucky almost nonfunctional and so childlike it's creepy). But most of what I write, if I'm writing relationships, and I usually do because I'm all about the love, is about characters who start with feelings of friendship.

So you take characters who have a friendship and really care about one another already, and then they realize (slowly or when an anvil drops on their heads, doesn't matter) that they're in love with their friend, and they get all messed up about what to do about it. There are so many fun things you can do with them in that context, which can often sublet to other tropes, like fake dating or trapped in a cave-in, whatever you've got. I am built for longing and pining. I think I was put on this earth for that (and is pretty much most of my output for Captain America fic). The furtive glances and the awkward touches and the hidden fantasies, it's all so good. Especially when they are completely, 100 percent convinced their friend couldn't love them back.

Most of my relationships came out of being friends. We knew so much about each other already that it made the romantic aspect easier to deal with. But I also like it when that transition is awkward and cute. It's fun to see characters navigating the changed landscape of their friendship.

I'm reasonably certain that's a huge part of why I am so into Steve/Bucky and Steve/Sam (okay, let's face it, Steve/a lot of people), because both of those are often based in friendship, especially MCU Steve and Bucky where they changed the dynamic to be Bucky as Steve's protective friend. It just hits all my buttons, that they've loved each other since they were little boys, and that love changed into something else when they were older. And has lasted for nearly a century. With Pacific Rim last year, a huge part of what made me Team Hot Dads was that Herc and Stacker so clearly had this long, deep history together, a really treasured friendship that played out over the course of the movie. And drift bonding was an established thing, which would be the ultimate form of friendship and love for people, really, to be inside someone else's mind. SO DELISH.

So yeah, give me characters with a deep bench on the friendship stuff, put them in a situation where they make the shift to being in love, and throw in some hardcore pining and yearning, and I'm there.

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Dec. 7th, 2014 09:54 pm (UTC)
And oh man, when it's a slow, simmering boil, that makes it ten times better.
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