shards beneath our feet (an elemental Lost kids fanmix)

  1. I See Fire by Paola Bennet
  2. Jump Before We Fall by Michael Schulte
  3. Come Away To The Water (ft. Nicole) by Dasha Akelin
  4. Red Hands by Walk Off The Earth
  5. Breath Of Life by Florence + The Machine
  6. Invincible by OK Go
  7. Pumpin Blood by NONONO
  8. Radioactive (ft. Lindsey Stirling) by Pentatonix
  9. Bottom of the River by Delta Rae
  10. Earthquake by Hit The Lights
  11. Skyway by The Apples In Stereo
  12. Young Volcanoes by Fall Out Boy
  13. Team by Kina Grannis, Imaginary Future & Emi Grannis
  14. (bonus track) Once Upon A Dream by Lana Del Rey

Find it here!
(The link sends you to a mediafire folder, only the zip file is necessary for the entire mix)

A/N: A little late, but considering how late it was when I started…

ANYWAY! So this is for the still Untitled Descendants x AtLA fusion drabbles. I was looking for music to help me inspire some writing and instead stumbled into making a fanmix. Which, I mean, was also pretty fun. So hope y’all enjoy this (especially you, @theotpauthor! Thanks for all your support!)

EDIT: NOW WITH TITLE “OUTLIVING THE RUINS”

Untitled Descendants prompt response drabble (2015-11-20)

The first time, he doesn’t notice. Ben is a tactile person, he grew up with a father who would casually ruffle his hair when happy, a mother who would gently rest a hand against his cheek to show she cared. Touching is communication, is affection.

And so when he reaches out to place a hand on Carlos’ shoulder he doesn’t notice it. Doesn’t think much of the way Carlos tenses under his hand, how he curls away; attributes it to Dude and lingering traces of Carlos’ fear.

Ben doesn’t notice that first time.

Tourney means physical contact–tackles aren’t allowed, but checking happens frequently enough. It’s not so bad, everyone’s padded, but the first few times, Carlos makes like a turtle and huddles under his shield.

“No, you can’t just hide,” Ben says, pulling the shield away and offering Carlos a hand up; he hesitates before taking it.

“Well what’s the shield for, then?” Carlos shoots back, more than a little frustrated at their lack of progress. Scoring was easy to pick up–accuracy and speed something which came easy to him–but checking practice sucks.

Ben considers it, tries to articulate the thoughts that a culture of knighthood has instilled into him, “A shield protects you, yes, but it’s so that you can push forward and act,” he smiles, because that seems about right.

Uncertainly, Carlos smiles back.

“Why don’t we call it quits for now? You did well today,” Ben says. This time, when he reaches a hand out to Carlos, he notices the flinch and pulls back immediately. But he accredits it to checking practice and nothing more.

It’s not that Ben is watching Carlos–except for how he kind of is. He’s looking out for all of the Lost kids, really, wants to make sure they’re settling in okay. And if he focuses his attention on Carlos more than the others, well, that’s only because the other three seem to be handling the other students well enough on their own.

But as he watches, he begins to see a pattern.

Carlos has no problem picking up Dude and, for want of a better word, cuddling whenever he pleases. He also has no issues sharing personal space with his fellow Lost kids, drawing comfort from the closeness of his friends, or leaning in to share whispers with Evie–short white hair mixing with long blue. But it’s when touch is made that Carlos freezes.

The other Lost kids know it, too, and seem to accommodate in their own way. Evie flows around him, looping their arms together without any contact, until Carlos eases into it himself. Jay’s roughhousing is playful at heart, the way wolf cubs tussle and tumble with one another; even then, Jay will pause after initiating contact, to let Carlos adjust, before continuing. Mal and Carlos hardly ever touch, but in the rare occasions that happens, she looks him in the eye as a form of nonverbal warning before touching him.

It’s courteous, which isn’t a word Ben would think to use for the Lost kids, so it must be important.

~

A/N: So… this is a very very late response to anon’s prompt here and it… uh.. doesn’t really fill the prompt. So double sorry, anon (… or @jalencolbert?)

I had been hoping to put it into Ain’t No Rest, but since that’s on hiatus, I felt bad about letting it languish unfilled… hence this drabble.

I know you probably wanted some cute flirty touching but all I could think about was how Carlos is unused to positive contact and would be very touch shy. So I guess this could be considered “pre-slash” Benlos…

edit: now posted on ao3 here

Outliving The Ruins, 1/? (2015-11-17)

His father grew up in a desert. Where other benders lacked the focus to control so many grains of sand, his father had been able to bend entire dunes to his whim–as powerful as a god. Combined with his intelligence and shrewdness, it was no surprise when he became royal vizier. Second only to the sultan in Agrabah.

And yet, that was not enough for his father.

Sand is shifting, consuming, grasping. Greedy. Selfish. Sand is a poor foundation to build on, turns wind into something abrasive and destructive. There is no substance to sand.

Jay was born and raised on an island of rock and metal. All his life he has seen the people of the Isle build a home out of scraps, carve out an existence in an unwelcoming land. They are not ashamed and they do not falter.

Jay is a very different kind of earth bender than his father.

The water of the Isle is poisonous. The shoreline is murky with toxic waste, the clouds weep acid rain, and the river cutting across the island is more like a swamp. There is no pure water on the Isle.

And that’s the way Evie likes it.

Only a weak bender would need pure water. Night or day, tainted water or not, Evie is no weakling. The sea creatures near the Isle are hardier than their Auradon counterparts, acid rain is capable of wearing down stone, and the swamps are teeming with life. Water is life; the strong adapt. This is what she sees, this is what she learns.

She may never become a healer, but that is only one path a water bender may take. She will make her own path.

And anyway, as the daughter of a collector of hearts, she knows what the most potent liquid in the world really is.

Carlos is not a bender. His mother isn’t one, so he isn’t either. He doesn’t smile at the wind in his hair, doesn’t think about how running could so easily turn into flying. It’s only logical to think that wide open spaces are better than a cramped closet full of fur and steel; less so to think heights are safer than having his feet on the ground.

But he isn’t a bender. Can’t be.

There is only one air bender in the world and she’s in Auradon.

Mal is a dragon’s daughter, fire bending is in her genes. One of her earliest memories as a child is setting a minion’s clothes on fire, and her mother’s proud cackling in delight. It is much more difficult to earn that kind of praise now that she’s older, even if her abilities have improved greatly.

Maybe that’s the problem, because it’s not just her fire bending abilities that have improved. When she mimics Jay, she can also lift boulders; when she copies Evie, the raindrops freeze for her as well.

There is only one person who can bend multiple elements, after all; the Avatar has never been a force for evil.

~

A/N: Gotta get back to my roots… or something like that 😛

Some DescendantsxAtLA fusion fic! Sort of from these two posts. I don’t know if I’ll continue this, but it was floating around in my brain and I thought–better write that down before it disappears.

EDIT: NOW WITH TITLE “OUTLIVING THE RUINS”

Character Analysis: Descendants, The Lost Kids (2015-11-11)

A/N1: Because I missed Descendants, even if the Wicked World series kind of messes with all my head-canons from the movie… So as far as I’m concerned, the movie is alpha canon while the book(s) and animated shorts are beta canon. Not that canons necessarily correlate with head-canons buuuuut…

Anyway, the lost kids!

With any of my character analyses I am open to alternate interpretations, so please feel free to reblog with your own analysis. 🙂

Carlos
Phlegmatic – Apathetic/Conflicted
IS(F/t)P = Artisan = Composer/crafter
Air
Slytherin-Gryffindor

Evie
Sanguine – Optimist
EN(F/t)J = Idealist/Rational = Teacher/field-marshal
Water
“True” Slytherin

Jay
Choleric – Realist
ESTP = Artisan = Promoter
Earth
Slytherin-Hufflepuff

Mal
Melancholic – Cynic
INT(J/p) = Rational = Mastermind/architect
Fire
Slytherin-Ravenclaw

Reasoning under the cut.

The Four Temperament / Four Philosophy Ensemble

If you’ve read my previous character analyses, you’ll know that I’m relatively new and not very fond of this trope. That being said, it does have some redeemable insights, so I decided to proceed with it anyway. The links above lead to the TVTropes pages but, like Wikipedia, TVTropes is not the authority on these.

Here’s a really quick break down of what the ensembles are and how they correspond to each other:

Sanguine – extroverted, emotional, people-oriented – Optimist
Choleric – extroverted, unemotional, task-oriented – Realist
Melancholic – introverted, emotional, task-oriented – Cynic
Phlegmatic – introverted, unemotional, people-oriented – Apathetic/Conflicted

The two obvious ones for this were Jay and Mal. I consider both of them to be more “task-oriented” than the other two–to them people are either obstacles or means to an end (especially the Auradon students who are then subjected to their respective charm/intimidation). They may know how to manipulate people, but that doesn’t mean they necessarily care about other people’s feelings. Then when you compare the extroverted and unemotional traits of the Choleric temperament with the introverted and emotional traits of the Melancholic temperament, it seems pretty clear to me that Jay is Choleric and Mal is Melancholic. Their corresponding Philosophies match as well, with Jay being the Realist and Mal being, in comparison, the Cynic.

Then for Evie and Carlos, the two “people-oriented” temperaments–Evie is undoubtedly an extrovert; while Carlos isn’t as definitively an introvert as Mal is, I do think he is one, especially what we see of him in the movie. As for emotional versus unemotional, it could be argued that both of them act emotionally during the events of the movie (unsurprising, considering how big a change it is for all of them) but I think, in comparison, Evie’s character arc is more about becoming more in touch with herself and her feelings whereas Carlos’ is making decisions despite his feelings.

I ultimately had to fall back on the Philosophies to choose. Hence, Evie as the Optimist–looking forward to Auradon, even if it was a big change, believing in herself even after Chad’s actions. And Carlos as the Apathetic/Conflicted–both because, basically, once he had Dude he literally cared about nothing else for the rest of the movie, because, as I said before, most of his story arc is making decisions despite his feelings, leaving the Isle despite/because of his conflicted feelings about his mother, reaching out to Dude despite being afraid of dogs, etc. The corresponding temperaments are then Sanguine for Evie and Phlegmatic for Carlos.

Myers-Briggs Type Indicator

Here’s the basics of the MBTI: it’s a set of four binaries which combine to produce one of sixteen distinct personality types. The binaries are:
Extroversion vs Introversion = self/society
Sensing vs iNtuition = learning/information
Thinking vs Feeling = decision-making
Judging vs Perceiving = planning/(re)acting

And so with that in mind, here’s the Lost kids:

Carlos – IS(F/t)P
As I’ve previously stated, I do believe Carlos is an introvert–not as much of one as Mal, but he doesn’t need people. More so in the book, he’s easily satisfied so long as he has stuff to tinker about with–in the movie, his story doesn’t revolve around people, it revolves around his own fears (of dogs, of his mother, of getting hurt) and him overcoming it. Sensors focus on facts and details more than the bigger picture, they inherently trust what they’ve experienced or what can be proven more than what could be (he’s quick to overcome his fear of dogs when presented with proof that Dude isn’t a rabid monster even though his mother told him otherwise). Feeling vs thinking I figure he is in the middle of the spectrum–given his book background of enjoying technical and scientific fields he is a little bit thinking, but the decisions we see him making in the movie are feelings based. For the most part, Carlos isn’t decisive–he goes along with other people’s plans–in addition, he’s adaptable (getting the alarm to shut off during the failed heist) and likes to mix work and play (literally playing video games before helping Mal plan the heist), hence Perceiving.

Evie – EN(F/t)J
Evie is the most extroverted of the group, she enjoys being around people and gets energized in group situations. Unlike Carlos, she is a big picture kind of person, always having the idea of meeting her very own Prince Charming, to the point where she trusted him even though she had no idea what kind of person he was (which, unfortunately for her, ended up being a heartbreaking asshole kind of person). Like Carlos, she is in the middle of the feeling vs thinking spectrum, though for slightly different reasons–for the movie she is mostly a Feeler due to her generosity, even excluding her crush manipulating her, she genuinely wanted to help Mal feel beautiful for her date with Ben. But there’s some pragmatism within that–wanting to impress her crush could lead to her fairytale ending, and when Lonnie wanted a new hairstyle Evie sought payment. As for Judging, well, her whole life has been following the large plan to find and marry a prince. Even without that, she’s constantly working (making absolutely gorgeous dresses and, at some point, a sleeping potion, when she’s not doing Chad’s homework), very decisive, and organized.

Jay – ESTP
Jay was, again, pretty easy to decide on. Despite his father’s “teaching,” Jay is both a team player and fond of groups–whether they be tourney players, princesses he can flirt with, or his friends. He is more on the sensing side, focusing more on what is tangible than not, and due to his task-orientedness almost to the point indifference he is more of a thinker than a feeler. Like Carlos, Jay is more of a reactor than an instigator (he follows, he doesn’t plan) and given his thieving spree early on he likewise believes in play before work.

Mal – INT(J/p)
Similarly, Mal was also pretty easy to decide on. She is an almost textbook case of introversion, and while some of that may be due to her misanthropy, she honestly does not need people or like crowds–she works best one-on-one. Like Evie, she is a big picture kind of person and her method of problem solving isn’t a single track method–in order to get the wand she sees and considers and even sort of implements multiple methods, she knows the wand is the Fairy Godmother’s so she cultivates a “relationship” with Jane, when that doesn’t yield anything, she plans the museum heist, when that fails, she seizes on the opportunity that the coronation presents–hence intuition (N).

The thinking vs feeling was a little tricky, not because I think she’s in the middle of the spectrum like Evie and Carlos, but because a lot of this movie was disguising her “thinking” tendencies for “feeling.” Let me explain–as previously mentioned, she is very task-oriented like Jay; people and their feelings are obstacles/tools, not something to be considered when making decisions–but basically the entire movie is about her emotional journey from following her mother’s orders to being her own person. Her decisions are in line to maximize benefit to herself–yes, even her “cure brownies” because she didn’t make them for Ben’s benefit but rather to alleviate her own guilt. Even her speech about the Lost kids staying in Auradon, it was a very logical breakdown of happiness–this makes you happy so you should stay here, this makes you unhappy so you shouldn’t go back, even though emotions don’t necessarily follow cause and effect like that.

It’s actually the the Judging vs perceiving spectrum which I think she falls in the middle for–ultimately, since she is the major decision maker of the group and her penchant for focusing on her work over play, I did decide on Judging more than perceiving. But she is still a little perceiving since the decision to get the wand was originally her mother’s and even though she was the planner of each of the different attempts to get the wand, they were pretty loose plans created as they went. Get to the museum, okay, now what? Can’t get past the forcefield, now what? Become Ben’s girlfriend before the coronation. 

Keirsey Temperaments

The Keirsey Temperaments are somewhat based on MBTI, in that it splits the types into a set of four temperaments and then gives fancy titles to the types within the temperaments. You can go to the link above to check out the individual titles for the MB types (they’re pretty interesting reads).

The temperaments correspond to the MBTI binaries as such: _S_J = Guardian, _S_P = Artisan, _NF_ = Idealist, _NT_ = Rational. The temperaments are sort of like two binaries as well–focusing on Communication and Action, that is: Concrete vs Abstract communicators and Utilitarian vs Cooperative actors. So Guardians are Concrete Cooperators, Idealists are Abstract Cooperators, Artisans are Concrete Utilitarians, and Rationals are Abstract Utilitarians.

Surprisingly, unlike my previous character analyses, the Lost kids aren’t arranged so that there is one of each type of temperament. Or perhaps that shouldn’t be surprising; given that, for all their differences, they are all villain kids and from the Isle of the Lost, certain temperaments simply aren’t practical on the Isle.

From the above types for the Lost kids, we get Carlos as an Artisan (specifically Composer/crafter), Evie as either an Idealist or a Rational (specifically Teacher or field-marshal), Jay as an Artisan (Promoter), and Mal as a Rational (Mastermind/architect). For the most part, on the Isle, I do think that Carlos, Evie, and Mal are their lowercase designations–on the Isle you have to be careful with your feelings, and given that Mal’s mother basically rules the Isle Mal is subject to Maleficent’s plans, not her own.

Artisans and Rationals are both Utilitarians–both act pragmatically, ignoring/bending rules in order to achieve their goals. While Artisans generally focus on quick, effective payoffs, Rationals want to fulfill their objectives as thoroughly and efficiently as possible. On the Isle, that kind of utilitarian mindset is not only encouraged but also, possibly, literally cultivated by their parents.

Since most of the movie isn’t on Auradon, however, a lot of what we see of Carlos, Evie, and Mal are their uppercase designations. Carlos and Evie both have the freedom to use their emotions whereas Mal has to step up and be de facto leader of the group. It doesn’t really change much for either Carlos or Mal–Carlos is still an Artisan whereas Mal is still a Rational, but Evie jumps from Rational to Idealist. Idealists are Abstract Cooperators–they focus mostly on their hopes and the possibilities for the future, and try to reach their goals without breaking their personal code of ethics–which also matches pretty well with Evie’s Sanguine/Optimist designation.

Avatar Elements

Like Hogwarts Houses, which is the next section, I believe that the Elements from the Avatar series does provide some nifty looks into characters’ personalities as well as having a convenient numerical match up. The above link sends you to a list of bending arts in the Avatar world, but if you follow through to the main articles of the Elements you can find more in-depth descriptions on the spirituality behind the respective elements. 

I actually did some brainstorming regarding a Descendants x Avatar fusion in which only the Lost kids (and Fairy Godmother) are benders. I stand by the elemental designations I gave to each of them there, but I’ll go into more detail here (character-wise, that is). So, I posit that Carlos is Air, Evie is Water, Jay is Earth, and Mal is Fire, and here is why:

Air is the element of freedom, pacifism, open-mindedness, and adaptability. In a symbolic sense, Carlos’ character arc is about him freeing himself from his past, his mother’s abuse, his fears. He’s never the one to instigate conflicts, is more likely to run than fight, and the rare cases when he stands up against his mother (in the video call) and Maleficent (at the coronation) it’s in defense of his friends not himself. He was willing to give Dude a chance, despite his phobia of dogs, and in a larger sense he was open to going to Auradon even though that’s where dogs are. As for adaptability, I’ve already mentioned it above so…

Water is the element of change, generosity, balance, and emotions. As previously stated, Evie is–especially amongst the Lost kids–generous and the most in touch emotionally; she knows her emotions and knows how to use emotions. Her story throughout the movie is about her achieving an inner peace, a balance between what she thinks she wants and what she actually needs, between expectations and being true to herself. All of them change in the movie, but with Evie it’s subtle. Visually, you see her outfits changing, yes–becoming softer and blending in more with the Auradon style–but character-wise she gains self-confidence. She goes from someone who sees her talents as a means to get a prince to someone who sees her talents as what makes her inherently amazing; she doesn’t need a prince to be complete, she already is.

Earth is the element of substance, determination, stability, and straightforwardness. Earth is, perhaps unsurprisingly, the least spiritual of the elements and is treated very pragmatically. Similarly, Jay’s character arc isn’t as emotionally wrought as the others’–sure, he does doubt the plan to steal the wand way before anyone else does, but it’s as much logical take on emotions much like Mal’s speech on happiness is–for the most part it’s just him shedding his father’s misanthropic lessons to reveal the literal team player that he really is underneath. But, he never really accepted that to begin with. When his friends are being threatened, he steps forward to protect them–even when it’s by Maleficent’s dragon form–he is, almost literally, the rock the others rely on.

Fire is the element of power (though it may be better to say that it is the element of energy), industry, creativity, and drive. As previously stated, Mal is hard working and artistic. Like in the Avatar series, Mal’s drive is at first twisted for her mother’s nefarious gains, whereas Zuko at first only knows how to power his bending through anger and hate. But, ultimately, both Zuko and Mal discover good and wrest control of their life away from their toxic parents and societal expectations. In AtLA, the Fire Nation only sees their bending as a way to destroy and consume, but as the Sun Warriors and dragons explain, that is only when they are out of control. When in control, fire isn’t destruction it’s creation which parallels Mal’s story line.

Hogwarts Houses (surely, no link is necessary… :P)

I greatly enjoyed @kisapandemonium‘s lovely GIF edit and, frankly, agree. The tag “#finally a group of slytherins we can all get behind” basically sums up what I loved so much about the Descendants movies. Because all of the Lost kids are Slytherins (and not because of the “Slytherin=evil” bullshit)–cunning, ambitious, pragmatic–and I’m so fond of that fact.

However, I also enjoy the idea (I don’t know where the original post is, sorry, but it’s not mine) that each of the Golden Trio represent another House–with Harry being Slytherin, Hermione being Ravenclaw, and Ron being Hufflepuff. I also enjoy the implication that follows, in that Neville is a “True” Gryffindor (I also don’t remember the original post, but I believe it was something like… Neville was a Hat stall only because he kept arguing against being a Gryffindor and the Hat was pretty damn sure he was a Gryffindor. Because the fact that Neville argued against the Hat). And so I kind of want to mix those two together.

While I do believe that all of the Lost kids are Slytherins–if we were to have “secondary House alignments” then Carlos would be Gryffindor, Jay would be Hufflepuff, and Mal would be Ravenclaw, while Evie is the “True” Slytherin. Carlos’ story arc is about facing his fears–dogs, physical confrontations (on the tourney field), his mother, Maleficent–hence, Gryffindor. Throughout the movie, Jay shows such utter loyalty to his friends that he even willingly throws himself in front of a dragon to protect them. As for the “Slyther-claw” vs the “True” Slytherin, that was a bit of a toss up. But, ultimately, Mal isn’t all that ambitious, certainly not in comparison to Evie. Mal was content on the Isle, graffitiing her symbol wherever she could put it and committing small acts of evil. Evie, in comparison, has always wanted more out of life–while that no longer includes a prince to marry, now it’s a desire to be more than what other people expect from her.

And that’s all, folks! If you got this far then I hoped you enjoyed 🙂

~

A/N2: It seems kind of cowardly to hide this in the author’s notes of a separate post, but I think Ain’t No Rest is officially going to be on hiatus. It, as I feared, collapsed under its own weight and lack of direction.

That being said, that does free me up to do other non-ANR Descendants fic. And I’m not saying that means I’ll do Once The Always, but I am planning on re-watching the TCoN movies soon so…

Ain’t No Rest, part 10/? (2015-10-16)

All of this is very surreal, Ben thinks, as he carefully pokes at the scrambled eggs in the frying pan in front of him. Him, in pajamas, standing in his kitchen cooking a very late breakfast. His ex-girlfriend, perfectly dressed, sitting poised in one of the tall chairs for his dining table across from his current houseguest. An escapee from the Isle of the Lost.

“The season that you took over was my favorite, really,” Carlos says candidly, before smearing a thick layer of jam on his toast and shoving half of it into his mouth.

An escapee from the Isle of the Lost who is somehow better at media runaround than Ben–even though he’s been trained on this since childhood and again as part of Knight lessons.

“I’m not surprised, that season was the most popular even in other countries. A fresh face does wonders for a dying series. Although, I didn’t know you got reception on the Isle,” Audrey preens, delicately sipping at her no-pulp orange juice and leaving a pink lip stain on her glass.

Beneath the table, Dude has settled into a reluctant silence, his Audrey-induced growling abated mostly by Carlos’ gentle and rhythmic foot nudging.

Bemused, Ben turns back to the frying pan.

“We don’t. Well, not really. It’s more like we don’t have TVs on the Isle to receive signal. But I’m pretty good with machines,” Carlos says through a mouthful of food.

In disgust, Audrey looks away, “I suppose you don’t have manners on the Isle, either?” Half-heartedly she adds, “Is that why you left?”

Even Ben knows how much of a reach that was, and he figures the eggs are as good as they’re going to get. He turns off the heat, scrapes them onto two plates, and sits himself at the table as well. One plate goes in front of him, the other in front of Carlos.

“You sure you don’t want any, Audrey?” he asks, mostly sarcastic.

“As if,” She scoffs, “If I remember your cooking correctly, those eggs are probably somehow runny, rubbery, and burnt all at the same time.”

And… well… she’s not wrong. Ben pushes around the mess on his plate.

“They taste okay to me,” Carlos volunteers, after trying a bite. It must not be a lie because he keeps eating them, but Ben can’t help but mirror Audrey’s skeptical expression.

“Really?” Audrey asks, no longer a reporter but a person honestly mystified.

“They smell okay, so it’s already a lot better than the eggs on the Isle,” Carlos says with a shrug.

“Okay as in what?” this time, Ben asks.

“Okay as in not rotten,” Carlos clarifies, “Eggs are kind of a luxury on the Isle–non-spoiled ones, anyway–they are a good source of protein and all that. But they aren’t all that high a priority during barge runs, even if we’ve been getting first pick. And it’s rare to actually find a non-broken, non-spoiled egg so…” he shrugs again, though his shoulders don’t quite come back down after, and focuses on his breakfast.

Ben and Audrey look at him, then at each other, ill at ease. Of course rubbery, burnt eggs would taste okay in comparison to rotting food. Having no TVs is one thing. But not having edible food? Barge runs?

What–

“What was life on the Isle like?” Audrey breathes out, horrified, somehow thumbing guiltily at the condensation beading along her glass of orange juice.

Carlos glances towards Ben for something like reassurance, then faces Audrey, “Is this still off the record?”

Audrey hesitates, and for that second Ben earnestly shoots her a glare, but she rallies herself. All of her emotions–her shock, her pettiness, her concern–tucked away behind pure professionalism. “Do you want it to be?”

Carlos answers.

~

A/N: I swear to god this story! Argh! Literally every chapter I have one thing planned and instead it goes in a completely different direction. I am barely stringing together a sentence when suddenly my brain goes–oh, wait, what if instead of that thing you already plotted out I did this thing instead? WHYYYYYY BRAIN WHYYYYYY.

That being said, because I have no idea what this story is doing I am even more invested in writing this because I AM SO CURIOUS AS TO WHAT IS HAPPENING.

So I have a fic I was trying to write, and I was wondering what you think of it. In an effort to evade being sent to the Isle of the Lost, Cruella de Vill escaped to England. Eventually recaptured, she brought back with her a child with black hair, green eyes, and a strange scar on his forehead. 13 years later, the renamed Carlos de Vill is pulled away from Auradon by the power of an ancient Goblet to compete in an archaic tournament. Magic may be real, but that does’t mean he has it…right?

It’s an interesting idea for sure. The Harry Potter series (or at least the British magical world presented in it) is insular enough that many other shows/movies/books aren’t necessarily incompatible. There are some points where I’m wondering what exactly you’re implying–because there are multiple ways to interpret this.

Like, for example, is this a switched identity thing–in which both Carlos and Harry exist but for some reason, Cruella switched her baby for the Potters’ baby? Or is this a story in which Carlos does not exist, but Cruella somehow obtains Harry and then names him Carlos because she would have named any child she raised Carlos? Like… is the Carlos we see in Descendants secretly Harry Potter? And only when the Goblet of Fire calls upon his “real name” does he realize it… And so is there then a “Harry Potter” living and learning in Hogwarts that, due to actually being Carlos de Vil, realizes his entire life has been a lie?

I guess what I’m saying is that I’m not entirely sure what kind of Carlos-is-Harry method you want to use for this story so I can’t really brainstorm more on what you’ve given me…

I suppose I wonder how Cruella got Harry (either instead of, or in exchange for her own son). Like, is she blood related to Lily (and Petunia)? Or did she just see this green-eyed baby and want it for herself–but, why?–or did she have Carlos and try to–OH MY GOD.

Okay. I just thought of something potentially horrific but possibly in character for the Descendants’ version of Cruella de Vil. Like… what if she did have Carlos (canon Carlos, that is) but he died as a baby. For some reason. Either her own neglect or he just wasn’t a very healthy baby. But he dies. And we’ve seen how attached she is to that fake stuffed dog so what if… she just lost her baby. And she sees this abandoned baby just, you know, lying there. And she takes it. Because that means her baby’s not really dead, see, he’s right here.

Um… like I said… I have no idea which route you want to take for that so everything with a grain of salt.

But, okay, after that… I guess then I would have to wonder about the timing of things. Since Goblet of Fire happens in the year right after Harry turns fourteen… wouldn’t this happen before the events of the Descendants movie? In which case, Carlos aka Harry isn’t enrolled in Auradon Prep–he’s a student of Dragon Hall. And if he’s, as in GoF canon, a representative of a fourth school then that means you can bring in other Dragon Hall students to Hogwarts for the tournament. Such as Mal, Evie, Jay, and other of the more magically inclined villain kids.

It would derail the Descendants movie entirely but… it could be interesting to play around with. I mean, as I’ve said before, I haven’t read the book so I don’t know much about non-movie canon for the Descendants world, but if you can make it work that more power to you. And nothing is to stop you from having the events of Descendants (that is, Ben inviting the four Lost kids to Auradon Prep) from still happening after the GoF x Isle of the Lost year.

Some advice: I’d say watch out for spreading yourself too thin, though, and make sure you have a good handle on your character voices. Especially Carlos-Harry. He’s going to be different than either canon!Carlos or canon!Harry, but he has to be similar enough to both that you can still get the feeling of both of them.

And, make sure Cruella’s motivations make sense. In a way, SHE’s the instigator of your fic idea, so even if her reasoning isn’t exactly rational (because emotions aren’t always rational) it should adhere to some kind of internal logic.

It’s definitely an interesting idea, with a lot of intricate plotting to work through, but not entirely undoable. If you have your heart set on it then go for it! 😀

AHHHHHH! AHHHH! MY FEELS I CANT!!! I really loved A Tale of Two Kingdoms, its characters (because, come on, you gave Carlos a lot more depth and justice than Disney has), its story line (DUDE! SO COOL!), and every twist and turn. I LOVED IT!!!

Thanks! A Tale of Two Kingdoms was really fun to write–it just wanted to be written so badly and most of the time it was me just trying to articulate the story happening up in my brain. I’m glad you enjoyed it! 

A Tale of Two Kingdoms really is a story about Carlos, more so than anyone or anything else. In the fusion of Pacific Rim x Descendants, there aren’t very many characters who will thrive so well as Carlos would, you know? It’s a bit situational because here you have these giant monsters coming from the ocean who, eventually, become immune to magic. So in order for jaegers to exist, you’d have to have 1) people who would rather fight than run, 2) people who have the scientific know-how for giant robots, and 3) the motivation of 1 to do 2.

Like, in theory, Auradon might have the knowledge to create jaegers, but they canonically deal with their problems by banishing/hiding it on an island in the middle of the ocean. Whereas, Jemma Hook and other islanders may have the aggression and willingness to fight, but that doesn’t translate into creating a means to fight. Hence, Carlos being the only one that fits both. Even if I hadn’t stranded the other three Lost kids into the world of the kaiju, it’d be much the same. Mal and Jay would be willing to fight the kaiju but they’d do it in their own way (magic and/or physically) which simply wouldn’t work. Evie might have been able to do something–like, strategic strikes against the kaiju if they approached the Isle, or arrange a mass exodus of the Isle–but not to the extent that Carlos did.

Everything else in the story really is kind of just trappings for Carlos’ coming of age/falling in love.

Once Then Always (further brainstorming) (2015-10-01)

A/N1: Check this post out, first.

~

Okay, so even if I were to write this story, which I’m not saying I will (but I’m not saying I won’t either), here are some things which I would, theoretically, like to do/see, as part of the repercussions of the Lost kids being the Narnia’s Golden Four instead of the Pevensies.

1) Carlos the Gentle + Wolves –> Dogs

Carlos is literally responsible for the existence of dogs. If he hadn’t allowed the White Witches’ wolves to defect to the side of good, they would never have been domesticated, and thus would have remained wolves forever instead of steadily turning into modern day dogs.

Do you know how hilarious/potentially fascinating that would be considering dogs are the reason why his mother was caught (and banished to the Isle and potentially why Carlos even exists). It would be so great.

2) Evie the Magnificent + Dwarves interaction

If I’m remembering this right (I’ll have to do a re-watch/read of LWWA if I do end up writing Once Then Always) lot of the Black Clan dwarves were aligned with the White Witch while the Red Clan dwarves (arguably) were still on Aslan’s side. But the dwarves we see in Snow White and the Seven Dwarves aren’t clearly one Clan (as denoted by hair color) or the other. Even the two instances of dwarves we see in Descendants (Doug, with black/brown hair) and School of Secrets (unnamed, Sleepy’s kid with red hair) show that the seven dwarves of Snow White are already mixed clans.

So how do these two Clans, on opposite sides of a centuries long war, reconcile? Evie the Magnificent, that’s how. I think, though, it would kind of start out selfish on her part. Pragmatically, of course, but also simultaneously selfish. Because here are two Clans of dwarves who want to prove themselves better/more loyal to the new tetrarchs of Narnia but their main industry of weapons making is basically… defunct. So Evie, knowing that dwarves in her time are in charge of the precious metals/gemstones as well, is just like… make jewelry, make crowns worthy of the new tetrarchs of Narnia.

And she somehow gets them to grudgingly work together… somehow.

I realize now that there’s a running theme in the Lost kids unintentionally playing a part in their parents’ demise during their rule over Narnia. And… I REALLY like that. So… hm… let’s see.

3) Mal the Just…

… probably was the one to, at least temporarily, side with the White Witch. She saw a woman–just like her mother–who not only brought a kingdom to its knees but kept it there. Ruled over it for centuries? a dreadfully long time. Became queen, in fact. Maleficent never did that. Just cursed the royal family–and even that, only partially, because three weak fairies had been able to soften the blow. Make it sleep instead of death.

And at first, Mal thinks, how foolish. If you’re going to do something, do it completely. Crush it thoroughly so it can’t be undone. But she sees the effects of that under the White Witches’ rule, creatures turned to stone, unable to make up for their mistakes. And, maybe, Mal also is pragmatic more than kind about this. Maybe she thinks it’s a waste of resources. Thinning down one’s own army until there is hardly anything left. Wouldn’t it be better to temporarily imprison them, and get more use out of them later?

~something something probably relating to the White Witches’ efforts to kill her gang~ Mal realizes she’s made a terrible mistake. She goes back to her friends, asks for forgiveness, because justice is not about being punished, it’s about making sure crimes will not be committed. Will not be repeated. And sure, one way is to kill the criminals, but another way is to rehabilitate them.

Nothing can be final, there will always be a way to give someone a second chance. There are no killing curses, only sleeping curses. I dunno I’ll figure it out when I write it

4) Jay the Valiant…

Okay, let’s see, what was the cause of Jafar’s downfall. Aladdin, the “laws of genies,” uh… Is the Cave of Wonders a lion head or a tiger head? Because that could put an interesting spin on the “diamond in the rough” requirement. In that Jay is the first “diamond in the rough,” aka someone who is willing to sacrifice themselves for others.

Unless Genie was there? Like… if Narnia is Auradon’s ancient past, then Genie who is an ancient being, might have been in Narnia during the Lost kids’ reign. Which means… what. Was Genie actually a bad guy before?

Hm… okay, no, this one is difficult. 

Urgh, I dunno. Should I even? I have Ain’t No Rest, though… 

Ain’t No Rest, part 8/? (2015-09-29)

Carlos wakes up to a persistent ringing noise, a small furry face huffing dog breath right into his nose, and in a bed that definitely isn’t his. He’s not sure which problem to fix first–isn’t sure if he should even bother to fix anything. He’s on the edge between sleep and wakefulness and it’d be pretty easy to slip back down into sleep.

Except for that damn ringing noise.

Carlos groans, alerting Dude to his conscious state, and he has to move his head away from Dude’s well-intended but currently unappreciated doggy kisses. Might as well stick his head underneath the pillow to muffle the noise as well.

Prey having escaped, Dude jumps down off the bed and out the slightly ajar door. The doorbell, for that’s what the ringing must have been–though the doorbell at Hell Hall sounded different than that–stops, too, leaving Carlos in peace.

For about three seconds.

Because then Dude starts barking and growling, and then there’s the Knight’s voice saying something, and someone else’s voice–a woman’s–shouting back and nope. No way is Carlos going to be able to sleep through this.

Quietly–not that he would be heard over the ruckus happening outside his room–he tiptoes out of bed, straightening the sleeping clothes Ben loaned him as best he could. Without the tough leather of his jacket, or his steel-enforced boots, he feels soft. He feels vulnerable with his gang so far away–they’ve never been so separate before, even before they became a gang, the Isle is so small.

But Evie said he would be safe with the Knight, with Ben. He smooths his hands over the soft, plain shirt, before stepping closer to the bedroom door.

The voices become more distinct–actual words instead of just noise–and eavesdropping is a perfectly legitimate form of information gathering.

The woman’s voice curls around Dude’s continuous barking and growling, “–can’t believe you still have this mutt. This whole kind to animals phase was acceptable in high school, maybe, but we’re adults now, Benny–”

“Dude isn’t a phase!” Ben interrupts, almost a growl of his own, “And how did you even get in?”

“You gave me a key, Benny-boo, don’t you remember?” The woman says, high, lilting, like she owns the place.

Carlos can feel his muscles tense, preparing to flee. It reminds him of their mothers, back on the Isle, how everything they wanted was so easily taken.

“That was when we were still dating, Audrey, I asked for my spare key back.”

“And I gave it back,” the woman, Audrey, responds coyly, “After I made a copy, of course…” And maybe that was meant to be flirtatious, the pause in conversation implying some kind of seductive motion that Carlos can’t see, but instead:

“Will you shut that mongrel up!” She shouts, clearly irritated by how unromantic a barking dog can make a situation.

For some reason, it almost makes Carlos smile, even though he peeks out the door in concern for Dude. He knows what it’s like to be on the wrong side of that kind of irritation. Knows what it’s like to be on the wrong side of that phrase, actually.

The apartment size and layout being what it is makes guest bedroom door visible to the rest of the apartment. Extremely so.

So despite how quiet Carlos is in comparison to their argument, his movement is still very obvious. Three pairs of eyes catch on him and immediately Carlos regrets his actions.

To be honest, Audrey doesn’t look like much of a threat; she doesn’t look real–all pastels and perfectly put together–it’s entirely different from the world Carlos is used to on the Isle. Where grays and browns are the default, and colors are bright and loud and poisonous.

But Dude runs towards Carlos, wheeling around and standing guard, hackles raised and growling in her direction. Even Ben, from his spot further away, takes a few steps closer.

“Carlos–”

But Audrey is already near, and Dude not much of a deterrent. She turns towards Carlos, and smiles.

“Carlos, is it?” She asks, and there’s something in her hand, something she’s pointing in his direction. “Benny didn’t tell me he had a guest over.”

“Damn it, Audrey, I said no comment!”

But Audrey ignores him, focussed entirely on Carlos, “How about an interview?” She asks, recorder already on, “An escapee from the Isle of the Lost? My ratings will go through the roof!”

~

A/N: Ta-da! Ain’t No Rest update.

Surprise, Audrey is in journalism.

Also, bigger surprise, I actually barely made my midnight deadline! Wooooow.

Fake Fic Summaries 6/?, the Descendants x Narnia crossover edition (2015-09-28)

jacksgreysays:

Once Then Always

In a kingdom trapped in an eternal winter, there are four empty thrones waiting for their rightful rulers. Narnia discovers that the best way to overthrow a witch queen isn’t necessarily with heroes.

Or: Carlos has always been Gentle, Evie grows into her Magnificence, Jay learns to be Valiant, and Mal chooses Justice.

I’m always a sucker for Narnia fusions/crossovers in which a different set of kids meet the prophecy requirements and are the ones to take down the White Witch and become Kings and Queens of Narnia. And also, I read somewhere, that what if the Pevensies weren’t the first set of “two sons of Adam, two daughters of Eve” that Aslan sent to defeat the White Witch. The prophecy is so vague that literally any group of two boys and two girls could fit it–so the idea was, Aslan had sent multiple groups before the Pevensies but they all failed (got killed).

Now I’m not saying it’s true, or that in this AU the Pevensies were one such group that got killed, but maybe it takes four kids who know what evil is really like to defeat evil.

But I’m not really sure what I’d want to do with this, specifically. I definitely want there to be certain points where the Lost kids handle it differently than the Pevensies did. Like, for example, instead of killing the White Witch’s wolves, Carlos tames them/gets them to betray her. So it’s Carlos the Gentle, Wolftamer, instead of Peter the Magnificent, Wolfsbane. But, similarly, since none of them fall for Mr. Tumnus’ friendship act, the frozen statues don’t get unfrozen for the battle. Jay earns the title Valiant when he (tries to) makes a sacrifice play–which… I don’t think any of the Pevensies did–like, if the White Witch has one of the others, he tries to exchange himself for them (only for Aslan to step in all majestically).

You know, stuff like that.

My main hold up is that I’m not entirely sure whether or not I want one of them to fill the “betrayer” role that Edmund did. I’m thinking, if so, it would probably be either Evie or Mal; only because the White Witch would be able to take advantage of their ‘weaknesses’ best. Evie for the chance to be a real princess/queen, and Mal for a magical mentor who is successfully maintaining her rule over a kingdom. But at the same time, I don’t know if that is tempting enough to pull them away from the others… it depends.

Probably this would happen–in the Descendants timeline at least–during the museum heist. Considering it’s a museum full of various magical artifacts and it’s canon that they had to search around for where the wand was being held. It wouldn’t be too out there for a certain wardrobe to be one such artifact and interrupt their search by sending them to Narnia.

Which would derail the Descendants movie entirely, but that would’ve happened regardless. I guess… hm… it would be interesting if Narnia was like the super distant past for Auradon. Because a lot of the creatures you see in Narnia (fauns, dryads, minotaurs, DWARVES) they’re not contradictory to Disney movies per se, but if you compare Disney’s Hercules (which, obviously, ancient Greece so several centuries B.C.) in comparison to most of the ambiguous Medieval/Renaissance/more recent time periods of the characters/kingdoms in Auradon then you see a distinct drop in magic. Less magic, less interaction with gods/magical creatures, to the point where even the dwarves and fairies look human.

So with the idea that Narnia is the very distant past of Auradon, how interesting would it be for the so called hero kids to be confronted with villain kids actually being mythical rulers from the Golden Age of Narnia.

It’s an interesting idea in theory, and I may revisit to brainstorm some more or even do a few drabbles, but I don’t think I’ll actually write this. AT LEAST NOT UNTIL I FINISH GODDAMN AIN’T NO REST. Ugh, I know, it’s killing me. I wish it were as easy to write as A Tale of Two Kingdoms was…

I JUST REALIZED:

Since dogs originated from ancient wolves that have been domesticated, then that means Carlos, Wolftamer, is responsible for dogs existing. And dogs are the reason why Cruella was finally caught for her crimes and banished to the Isle of the Lost.

O_O

This sandbox is too fascinating to ignore.