7 – Have you ever had a fic change your opinion of a character?
In one ficlet, Stepping Stones
, I didn't so much have to change my opinion of Buffy, but rather I had to make a concentrated effort to make Buffy do something I thought she will never be able to do- admit her faults and seek to take responsibility for her mistakes. In doing so, I had to soften my harsh opinions of her inability to change. However, I view this as making her OOC. I don't believe she can change nor do I believe she will with the way Joss Whedon or any other writers portray her. Instead of changing my opinion, I should say that I left the possibility open that perhaps with a different writer Buffy seeking help for her issues to get herself mentally and emotionally healthy might one day be a possibility.
Similarly, with the chapters in which Buffy appears thus far in Acceptable Losses
, I had to "soften" how I portrayed Buffy because I don't believe she's actually capable of empathy nor love at her current state and I had to have her do something that was in a way selfless within the story... Of course, it's only selfless if you interpret her actions to be so, and I did leave that possibility open. On one hand, she's had to give up something that she may not ever get to experience again. On the other hand, did she have ulterior motives besides selfless love and caring in doing so? To be honest, I can't say. That motivation doesn't come into play with the rest of the fic, but I think it lingers as a question. When a "hero" makes a big flowery emotional speech, we tend to take them at their word, but it could be an act, a put-on, or a con just hide selfish reasons why they are doing what they do. Again, I'm not saying that's what Buffy did in Acceptable Losses, but I think it's good policy to question the White Hats every now and then.
And sometimes I need to be reminded that Spike is not a china doll that will be broken into a thousand pieces at the first blush of damage. He has sustained massive hurt-y injuries without shedding a tear or screaming, and sometimes that's difficult for me to remember. I totally blame "Fool for Love" for woobiefying him forever. Come on, all I see in my head is "*shove!* *fall!* *lip wobble!* *sobs!*" Oh the vampmanity! Someone get him a bandaid and a juice box! And then I have to recall the chip and Glory and how it took her trying to scoop out his heart with one finger or him getting nearly crispy-brain-fried to get him to cry out... And then the First... I really don't want to know what the Turok-Han was doing to Spike to make him scream... I have nightmares...
Also, Angel can be goofy as all fuck, and I like that. I think that in writing Acceptable Losses (man, this is making me realize just how much I need to finish posting that fic) that I realized that Angel could be loving. It's one of those things with Spangel where you know that Spike could love Angel, that's just a given, but there's always a lingering doubt of if Angel could truly love Spike or if he can truly love anyone after what he's gone through. I think what really changed him in my view was writing AL, but also some of the lines Brian Lynch wrote at the end of ATF. Angel's true love is his son. Connor is his world; Connor means more to him than anyone else, and no one is going to change that. That's when I realized that Angel is a good man. He gets things so wrong, but he's a good man. If given the chance, Liam would have grown up and been a good man, a good father, a better son. And Spike loves Connor too; they're family, a crazy unnatural dysfunctional family. I LOVE-LOVE-LOVE Brian Lynch's story in the Angel Yearbook because in one of the alternate timelines/dimensions, Angel managed to save Connor from being sucked into Quor'toth, but afterwards became so overprotective that he pushed all his friends away. Somehow, in that timeline, Spike entered the picture, and he was the only person Angel trusted enough to help look after three-year-old Connor. It just really reaffirmed my Spangel love.
I am rambling tonight! Whoo!( Cut for the answer to Days 1-6 and the other 23 questions for the upcoming days... )