Right Next To The KY

A few weeks ago, I wrote this impassioned, angsty post about my squick points in SPN fandom. I was very specific. I was very serious. I was very delusional to think that everything would stay so neatly within the proper boundaries.

Especially since past me wrote, then:

But I guess I see the whole notion of squick in slash as generative, as a way of delimiting one’s imaginative [sexual] boundaries and then shifting those borders as needed.

Which, at the time, I thought applied to other people. That my “imaginative boundaries” were firmly planted; once negotiated, now settled.

And I was pretty freaking certain about the Stonehenge of my squick: real world. As I said then:

So I actively avoid learning anything about the real world side of SPN.

Enter Tumblr. And Stonehenge falls.

Still, it seems that past me was at least aware of this possibility, though I tried to couch it in terms of my scholarship, ’cause that’s the shell I run to when I’m freaked:

Maybe it’s just temporary. Maybe it’ll be like my once avowed opposition to J2… a taboo that flew by the wayside thanks to my research on meta slash fic.

Right. RESEARCH.

Sam loves research. He does. He keeps it under his mattress, right next to the KY.

Shut up, Dean.

So this week, when I found myself happily reading J2 and liking it, for gods’ sakes! and it wasn’t even anything I could vaguely point to as being useful in this paper or the next one, I had a moment of: oh shit. Who am I? What have I become?

Well, that goes without saying by now.

Then I self-flagellated myself to a friend, someone I can count on to slap me down if necessary, and this person said:

Dude. There’s good stuff in every genre. If you’re reading it and you like it, it makes you happy, then do it. If you don’t and it’s not, then stop.

Basically: stop angst-ing about reading porn. Jesus.

Now, I still don’t want to know about anyone’s kids, or people’s marriages or ways of working or dogs or whatever–see? I’ve already said too much. But I’m less terrified of what will happen if I do, accidently. I still don’t seek this shit out, this kind of real world knowledge, but if I pick some up through an AU J2, really. My brain will not explode. And I’m not, therefore, a terrible person.

I can be amused by stuff like this and not forfit my professional fangirl card, not lose the illusion that I can summon cool detachment in the middle of Wincest and go “hey, yeah, I can use that. For RESEARCH.”

Because I totally can.

This is a long way of saying, I guess, that the fences are still flexible in my corner of fandom. Which I knew, but. I guess I wasn’t ready for the pastures to move so soon, you know?

I guess what worries me is that I have a tendency, once I drift into a particular subgenre as a reader to want to go there as a writer. But I’m sure that won’t happen here.

No freaking way.

Not As Easy To Pretend

A couple of weeks ago, someone found this blog via the search term “becky and sam slash fiction.” Which reminded me of a question that’s always bothered me about 7.8, “It’s Time For A Wedding”: why doesn’t Becky sleep with Sam when she has the chance?

This wee dram of a story is Becky’s answer.

Not As Easy To Pretend

Here’s why it didn’t work out between me and Sam:

He’s supposed to be with Dean.

You’d think I’d have known that.

I mean, you’d think of anyone, I would have known that!

Geez.

But I let, you know, other stuff overrule my brain and ended up making the worst mistake of my life.

Ok, maybe more than one.

I mean, I’m not an idiot. At some level, I knew it was a terrible plan, like Wesley-in-Angel level bad, but the first time I touched him again, in Vegas, I so did not care. I mean, I’d have risked the Apocalypse at that point, just have him look at me the way he does Dean.

Which, see? I knew better. Knew he didn’t belong with me. Knew those eyes wouldn’t have the same depth, or darkness, or love or lust or anything when they looked at me, no matter how much demon crap I gave him. Not the same as when he gazed down at Dean, all that affection practically spilling over his eyelashes and into his brother’s face.

Hmm. I like that. Maybe I can use it in the AU I’m working on.

Anyway.

So even then, when I should have been focused on writing my own story–OUR own story–I couldn’t escape the pull of theirs. It was stronger, hotter, sweeter than anything I could dream of between Sam and me.

Because, you know. I totally had that chance.

For over a week.

He was half-naked in my bed for more than a week and I–

Never so much as kissed him.

Except for that one time, at the table, but that doesn’t count because we were both upright and I had other things to worry about, then, than in cataloguing the smooth of his lips, the swing of his hips.

If you want to know the truth: at night, I slept on the couch.

He wanted to. Offered even, to give up the bed for me.

He’s really thoughtful, like that.

But no. There’s no way he would have fit there, and even he could see that through his puppy dog haze. So he’d sigh, every night, and pat my head. Kiss my cheek and hold me close just long enough for me to remember why I was doing this in the first place. Why I was willing to take all these crazy chances which, honestly, is not really my MO, taking chances.

Then he’d open his arms and squeeze my elbow and wind himself in my sheets. Bury his head under my pillows where I’d sighed his name a hundred times and tumble over into sleep.

He snored, but just a little. Not enough to keep me up, but enough to remind me that he was still there.

It was comforting. Human-generated white noise.

I’d stretch out on the couch and just lie there, for a while. Listening.

Thinking about the curve of his spine in the dark. I wondered if it looked like the way I’d described it in my story “Ceremony”:

He arched above Dean and his spine was like a snake, warm and alive under Dean’s fingers as he stroked, coaxed Sam’s tongue into his mouth and counted down each vertebrae like a rosary, Hail Marys in his mouth as they fucked.

And I knew I could get up and go look. Could watch his back rise and fall with sleep. Told myself it was research for my next fic, but something stopped me. Held me back.

I guess I felt like his body wasn’t mine to see. Not like that.

I mean, don’t get me wrong. There was part of me that wanted to dive under the covers and swallow him whole. I mean, yeah.

To see if he really was proportional.

And I knew he’d have let me. Heck, he’d have liked it, if only because of the drugs, but.

It wasn’t his decision to make. Not his body to give.

It was Dean’s.

If Sam belongs to anyone, it’s not to himself. It’s Dean.

So I didn’t get up. Never did. Just lay there and listened and thought of all the nights that Dean had done the same.

**

And then, I admit, things got a little weird.

I did.

Because when the drug ran out, when Guy started acting like a jerk, I was desperate. Didn’t know what else to do.

It was as though all my logic got stripped away, all of my ability to reason, to think, and there was just Sam, his heavy body in my parents’ bed at the cabin, and I’d have done almost anything–I did–to keep him close.

Even though I knew it was just a loan. That Dean would come to collect him sooner or later. Because he always does.

And the worst part is, I babbled. You know, somebody like me that’s always thinking in words, choosing them deliberately, being really careful about crafting and I just lost all of that, in front of Sam. I said all the worst things that popped into my head, all the stuff I’ve thought about us but never even written in the forums because everyone would think I was trolling. It was awful. So embarrassing. I could see that, in his eyes, how crazy I must have looked to him, then.

But I couldn’t stop.

He does something to me. Something I can almost control in my fic, but in real life? Forget it. He is just too–

Too–

Beautiful and perfect and broken. A body with a billion pieces that only Dean can reassemble, can stitch together with his hands and his mouth and a thousand whispers of “I’ve got you, Sammy.”

That’s from “Religion of the Fields.” One of the first things I ever wrote.

And it’s true. I’ve seen it.

Ok, I haven’t seen them like, you know, but the way they are when they’re in the same space? The way they stand, kind of leaning towards the other like magnets? Their eyes snagged on each other’s faces? Oh yeah. I’m telling you.

It’s all true.

Anyway.

I’ll never see them again.

When I write it down like that, I believe it.

When I see it on the page, I know that it’s true.

But in my heart, I keep hoping, I guess. Which is silly.

I mean, I’ve got them here with me all the time, in my fic. On my site. In my writing.

Sometimes, I sleep on the couch at night and pretend that Sam’s still here. That the whir of the fan in the bedroom is really the sound of his breath. That I can get up anytime I want and stand over him, watch his spine ripple like a snake in the dark.

It’s not as easy to pretend, now, as it was. As I’d still like it to be.