rc45: (Default)
[personal profile] rc45
Title: The Upholding of Honour
Authors: [livejournal.com profile] agenttrojie and [livejournal.com profile] tea_fiend
Rating: R
Summary: A PPC interlude. Once upon a time there was a newbie on the Board who, when inventing his first Agent character, decided to invent an incident in which his Agent challenged the Department of Bad Slash to a squickfic reading contest, and which his Agent won. Established writers for the Department of Bad Slash were understandably a bit miffed by the insinuation that a newbie from some other department would be better at dealing with bad smut than their Agents were. Thus the idea for this interlude was born. It was recently unearthed in the uncharted depths of gdocs, and is posted here for posterity.



Summer 2009 HST

'You're kidding.' Agent Paddlebrains was most emphatic. She leaned back against the Console, subconsciously daring it to beep, as she lit a cigarette from the smouldering remains of the previous.

'I swear,' Agent Trojanhorse announced, assuming a suitably serious pose and striking an arm across her chest, 'by the holy name of Kurt Cobain. The weasel thinks he can take us on.'

'Snowballs in hell have nothing on what we will do to the poor lad,' Pads decided, taking a drag and blowing a smoke ring.

'Don't let anyone hear me say this, but are you sure?' Trojie frowned at her partner. 'I saw you after the first time, remember. And I've seen what happens every time you catch a glimpse of your own chest in the mirror these days.'

'I can handle it.' Pads folded her arms defensively across the aforementioned chest. 'Just so long as I don't think of warty... foot-long... Orc-ridden... lavender... ack!' She fell to the floor, shuddering, although it said a lot for her squick-proofing experiences in the DBS that she was still able to keep hold of the cigarette. She puffed away frantically, desperately trying to dispel the images of pendulous, veiny breasts.

'But you see why I ask the question,' said Trojie kindly, hauling her partner back to her feet and installing her in a chair. 'I think training is in order.'

'Only if you train with me,' said Pads. 'I'm not doing it alone.'

'Of course I will. How do you think I'm going to get past the horrible inaccuracies if I don't train?'

'I didn't realise your biological accuracy needs keeping in training,' Pads commented. 'I thought it was sort of innate.'

'I can handle squick just fine. Most things people think are gross are actually really interesting. But inaccuracies get to me. You know that. That's why you won't watch films with me any more. Anyway, we're going to need this,' said Trojie. She got up and made her way to her cupboard. From the depths of this unknowable pit of stolen goods and suspicious objects she hauled a dusty folder. Wiping it off, she presented it to Pads.

'I printed it out years ago, after my ... bad year,' she said, referring to her brief period of insanity back in 2006. 'Just to remind myself that no matter how bad things got, it can always get worse. Go on, open it. I made some diagrams and pasted them in the back.'

'I thought we'd had the birds and the bees talk,' Pads said, stroking the edges of the pages in question but not quite daring to look. 'I know enough specifics. Honestly. Especially since we had that talk about the dairy.'

Trojie threw her partner a sidelong glance. 'I have seen what you do to the semi-skimmed when you think I'm not looking.'

'It was asking for it!'

'Nevertheless.'

'Nothing good ever follows "nevertheless"...'

'Nevertheless,' said Trojie with a meaningful look in her eye, 'you are going to have to open that folder if you want to win this bet and restore the honour of the Department of Bad Slash. Which you'd better, 'cause I sure as hell do. We don't have so much honour that we can afford to go throwing it around like water. And stop molesting the milk, alright? That's your last warning, otherwise it's soy for you.'

'Soya is the semen of Satan,' Pads muttered, but she flipped through the folder nonetheless.

'It's the semen of no-one,' said Trojie. 'I hope. Now read that paperwork.'

Pads looked at the first page, and blanched. She flicked through the rest of it as if she were looking for something, and muttered under her breath as she did so. Finally she reached the annotated diagrams at the back.

'This ... you have printed out the entirety of every Ubersquick Legendary Badfic known to the PPC and stuck it in a folder. I'm amazed the thing hasn't spontaneously combusted.'

'I think you'll find C*l*br**n begins at page number 69, amusingly,' said Trojie, ignoring her partner's accusatory tone.

'Yes.' Pads poked the section in question. 'It's the really thick bit, isn't it? With the laminated pages.'

'They're all laminated,' Trojie pointed out. 'You can't be too careful in this department.'

'Extra laminated,' Pads corrected. 'With, oh, how pretty.' She prodded the nearest page suspiciously. 'With pretty little sparkly tags that you can pull out to make the diagrams move. Have I mentioned recently that you're diseased?'

'Yes. Frequently. This aids your quest how, exactly?'

'Not at all.' Pads sat back, and stared thoughtfully at the annotated diagrams. 'I just like to know what I'm letting myself in for.'

'Well, I'm not sparkly,' Trojie said, 'if that makes you feel any better.'

'I didn't think for a second that you were. You're not an ex-Sue ... Are you?'

'No, I am not. Now quit your yowling and read the damn thing.'

Pads complied, scowling. Trojie surreptitiously got out a bucket and placed it by her partner's chair. After a moment's thought she tiptoed over to the fridge and removed all the dairy products from it and hid them under her bed.

'Ye gods, this is gruesome.'

'This is necessary,' Trojie corrected. 'Not only is it crucial training for the upholding and maintenance of a highly esteemed department, it's also essential for ensuring we don't have a repeat of, for example, the Pain incident.'

Pads twitched at that, and Trojie reached out, patting her partner's arm in a comforting sort of way.

'You'll be alright,' Trojie decreed, her tone daring Pads to protest. 'I've trained you well. You even handled Paedo!Harry.'

That was perhaps a little too much, for Pads did not so much squeak at that point, but rather executed a sort of full-body flail, encompassing much flapping of wrists, gnashing of teeth, and disturbingly high-pitched yelps. Trojie upped the pace of her comforting pats.

'You'll be fine. I promise. Now, come on. We have a departmental meeting to attend.'

'The DBS has departmental meetings?' Pads managed to shriek through the agonised yelps and clutchings of stomach.

'It does now.'

The departmental meeting took place in the Really Very Tiny Auditorium, although really it could have been held in an RC: the only participants being Trojie and Pads, Cray and Gypsy, and Luxury. Presumably all the other members of the department had managed to find excuses to be elsewhere.

'First things first, do we all accept the minutes of the last meeting?' asked Gypsy, as chairwoman.

The last time we actually all met up was at an AHAIRQL match. I'm not sure there were any minutes, said Cray, delighting in her psychic voice. 'But we can accept them anyway if you like,' she finished vocally. This alternating trick was still entertaining her.

'I'll go with that,' said Trojie. 'Business of the day, then. Over to you, Pads.'

'Some newbie-Agent is saying he can beat any member of our Department at surviving reading C*l*br**n out loud,' said Pads. 'We propose we show him he's wrong.'

'And if none of us survive?' asked Gypsy.

'Pshaw.' Trojie pulled out her trusty anatomical diagrams. 'We'll be fine. Reason being, we've had practice with squick, all of us. He hasn't. And we're all in this department because of a natural tendency to be good at this. Well,' she amended, looking around at her audience, 'mostly we're in this department because we were pressganged, but the fact that we've survived this long must be due to something!' She thumped her hand on her knee. 'So I say we accept this bet!'

The assembled Bad Slashers looked at each other, then at Trojie.

'We've got a really nasty Potterverse fluff ficlet lined up,' said Cray. Annoyingly, that excuse was likely to be true, and the Bad Het agents shuffled off, leaving Trojie, Pads and Lux alone in the Auditorium.

'Well, I'm in!' said Lux excitedly. 'Hand me those diagrams, and get out of that uniform. We've got practising to do!'

'Lux,' said Pads. 'We're not re-enacting C*l*br**n, we're reading it out.'

Luxury pouted. 'Not even an interpretive dance?'

Trojie and Pads looked at each other. Pads shrugged. How much harm can it do?, the gesture seemed to say. Trojie quirked an eyebrow. Lux? Interpretive dancing? A lot. But it could be a good weapon.

'Okay,' Trojie said to Lux offhandedly. Then both she and Pads shared a sudden, horrible thought, and in whiplash unison cried:

'But not naked!'

Date: 2009-07-24 11:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] chelonianmobile.livejournal.com
S&S are offended by the use of the term "weasel" as an insult! Other than that, awesome. And I love the reference to the "interpretive dance" thing we did a while back - that was a reference, right?

(I will not include this in a fic because it would be childishly vindictive, however much of an asshat he was to me personally, but in my personal PPC canon, said newbie vanished from the PPC because Molly ate him.)

Date: 2009-07-25 01:36 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
Well, 'weasel' is a perfectly acceptable colloquialism. Plus Trojie would probably say 'mustelid' if she meant an *actual* weasel ...

(In my personal PPC canon, said newbie Agent never existed. He was a colllective hallucination)

Date: 2009-07-29 12:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] chelonianmobile.livejournal.com
Just wanna ask a biology-related question relating to elves in an original fic I'm thinking of, and I figured you were the person to ask; since they're effectively allergic to iron, presumably they don't have iron-based blood, so I'm going to steal an idea from Pratchett (whose elves bled green in "Lords and Ladies", IIRC) and give them hemocyanin-based blood. If they have this, would they still be genetically close enough to humans to crossbreed with them, or would they have to be so vastly genetically different that they couldn't?

Date: 2009-07-29 02:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
Haemocyanin and haemoglobin really really aren't compatible. No breeding.

In fact I'm struggling to think of any vertebrates that have haemocyanin. It's mostly an invert thing.

Long story short, feel free to give them haemocyanin but no, there'll be no breeding with anything that has haemoglobin blood

Date: 2009-07-29 04:58 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] chelonianmobile.livejournal.com
Thanks. Is there any way elves could have haemoglobin blood but still react badly to iron, scientifically speaking? I guess there's always the option of "It's All Done By Magic", but you can't use that to explain EVERYTHING.

Date: 2009-07-29 05:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
I have no idea, is the short answer! I don't think the blood system you have dictates your allergies in that way - after all, haemocyanin is copper based, but I used to wear a shitload of copper jewellery and do not have nasty reactions to it, I have stuck myself with copper wire by accident and therefore had it in contact with my blood and it's not been a problem, and on the flip-side, snails, which have haemocyanin from memory, frequently ooze up iron railings. So whatever iron allergy you come up with, it's not going to be blood related, I shouldn't think :)

Date: 2009-07-29 07:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] chelonianmobile.livejournal.com
Hmmm. Blood carrying both haemoglobin AND haemocyanin? It doesn't have to be 100% realistic, but I at least want it to sound reasonable. Like the Maximum Ride series; rampantly genetically impossible but it sounds cool.

Date: 2009-07-29 08:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
Both really won't work, I'm afraid.

Why not just make them allergic to iron? It's a metal, people are allergic to metals. No problemo! :D

Date: 2009-07-24 11:12 pm (UTC)
ext_42328: Language is my playground (Default)
From: [identity profile] ineptshieldmaid.livejournal.com
Soya is the semen of Satan

Agreed!

Date: 2009-07-25 01:36 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
You're both mad :P

Date: 2009-07-24 11:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pitviperofdoom.livejournal.com
Er...

The first time I ever read Celebrian I actually read it word for word, raising an eyebrow or wrinkling my nose here and there, but otherwise I was fine. I mean, I felt a bit dizzy, but that was just from sitting and staring at the computer for a while before standing up suddenly.

Should I be concerned?

Date: 2009-07-24 11:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tea-fiend.livejournal.com
Depends. Do you have breasts? Because I was alright until I caught sight of my breasts in the mirror after a shower later that day. Suddenly the mental images hit. If you don't have breasts then you wouldn't have that problem. Although presumably the sight of a penis could have a similar effect.

Date: 2009-07-25 06:31 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pitviperofdoom.livejournal.com
Er, yes. I am a female human.

The thing I had trouble sitting through was that *twitch* Flippy on Flippy lemon I sporked not too long ago. Of course... that was Fridge Logic masturbation, between cartoon characters, in script format, with a grasp on the English language that was dubious at best, so I'm not sure if I should be comparing that.

Date: 2009-07-24 11:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
No, that was roughly my reaction as well. Squick is only as squicky as you think it is.

However a lot of people DO find it really quite unpleasant, and so being able to read it and feel fine is a talent the DBS are proud of, in general, and having someone come along and say they're far superior to the entire DBS at withstanding squick is clearly going to irriitate them.

Date: 2009-07-25 01:44 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sedri.livejournal.com
I think the Agents are more vulnerable than we are, to be frank. They have to see it. Some readers are blessed with either terribly un-visual imaginations or the blessed luck of skim-reading that misses some of the more... unsettling imagery. I fall into the latter category.

That said... ick. Good luck, DBS, for I'm sure you'll win, but Agent Sedri is running headlong in the other direction and threatening HQ with some rather nasty acts of vengence if it tries to cirlce her back the same way.

Date: 2009-07-25 01:46 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
Yeah, you're right - impact of squick on agents and impact of squick on authors is different.

Fortunately for Agent Trojie, she long ago ceased see sex and anatomy as anything other than a) interesting biology/science and b) her job. So much that would squick others just doesn't register for her.

Tell Agent Sedri not to worry, she hasn't the training anyway :P

Date: 2009-07-25 03:41 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sedri.livejournal.com
Agent Sedri doesn't trust that the Ironic Over-Power will take that as a good enough reason.

Date: 2009-07-25 05:33 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
Fair point

Date: 2009-07-25 01:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dracorn-adagio.livejournal.com
Bad Slash has Lux. They win by default.

Date: 2009-07-25 01:29 am (UTC)

Date: 2009-07-25 02:48 am (UTC)
ext_85481: (Default)
From: [identity profile] hsavinien.livejournal.com
Oh dear...

Brief Tale In Comment Form

Date: 2009-07-25 11:42 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lady-rilwen.livejournal.com
[I'm sorry, but I just had to write this. :P ]

After the first challenger failed, more turned up. The few, the brave, the completely and utterly insane, ready to risk their mental functions for some bizarre competition.

Possessed of a remarkably unshakeable demeanour, nerves hardened by years in the Sith, it was one Cavan Shenn who almost beat the DBS in their squickfic reading. The anatomical accuracies and dreadful phrasing, however, took their toll on an experienced member of a species that rumour had it, wrote the best erotica in their galaxy.

Nevertheless, he persisted, until Agent Trojie clouted him upside the head, knocking him unconscious, after uncovering the fact that he was cheating. His Force discipline had allowed him to school his mind so that it forgot each sentence immediately after reading it, lessening the impact and leaving him with the memory only of the first and last lines.

Though this coping mechanism seemed both novel and amusing, the DBS consensus was that if one wanted to try for the title, one had to risk the flashbacks like anybody else.

He'd gotten off lightly. Once the bruise faded, there was almost no sign of his foolhardy endeavour.

In other cases, the psychological damage lingered much longer.

Re: Brief Tale In Comment Form

Date: 2009-07-25 02:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
*snort*

If he'd like to apply for a JOB in the DBS, however, he'd probably be welcomed with open arms. We are SO understaffed!

Re: Brief Tale In Comment Form

Date: 2009-07-25 02:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lady-rilwen.livejournal.com
Isn't one Lux enough, without a male version with freaky telempathic, pheromonic and Force-based mind-bending powers? :p

Re: Brief Tale In Comment Form

Date: 2009-07-25 02:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
Has the Lace ever been picky? Consider her current staff and their range of freaky-deaky powers, habits, delusions, psychoses and methods. :P

Re: Brief Tale In Comment Form

Date: 2009-07-25 02:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lady-rilwen.livejournal.com
Point. But I suspect that putting Cavan and Lux in the same Department might be a bad idea... at least if you wanted any more recruits who haven't been scared away.

Re: Brief Tale In Comment Form

Date: 2009-07-25 02:34 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
But there is the possibility of them distracting each other long enough for new recruits to get drawn in?

Ah well, I spose we're destined to be a tiny band of overworked, crazed specialists within the larger, but still relatively tiny band of overworked crazed specialists that is the PPC :P

Re: Brief Tale In Comment Form

Date: 2009-07-25 02:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lady-rilwen.livejournal.com
You're kidding, right? They'd distract each other briefly, and then go looking for threesome volunteers. :p

Re: Brief Tale In Comment Form

Date: 2009-07-25 06:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
Yeah, but only the actual Agents will care about that. As long as missions get done, the Lace won't give a damn :P

Re: Brief Tale In Comment Form

Date: 2009-07-25 06:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lady-rilwen.livejournal.com
...Unless it's the Lace that gets propositioned. :P

Re: Brief Tale In Comment Form

Date: 2009-07-25 06:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
I dunno. I think there'd be a punishment, but ... well, this is all IF Cavan volunteered. I rather suspect the Lace has never been known to turn down a volunteer.

Date: 2009-07-27 02:33 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] hungryugolino.livejournal.com
Hm...I take it there are no 40k Slaneeshi involved in this contest? Someone was floating the idea of a daemonette agent a while back...

Probably for the best, come to think of it.

Date: 2009-07-28 04:12 pm (UTC)
ext_247870: man holding guitar, standing on a stage, surrounded by upraised hands (Default)
From: [identity profile] cofmanynames.livejournal.com
...You (um. Indirectly?) made me go read C*l*br**n.

Um... once and three-quarters, in fact.

I think I should probably be angry at you for this...

Date: 2009-07-28 04:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
I swear, we didn't do it deliberately.

You shouldn't be reading C*l*br**n, Ciri.

Date: 2009-07-28 04:58 pm (UTC)
ext_247870: man holding guitar, standing on a stage, surrounded by upraised hands (Default)
From: [identity profile] cofmanynames.livejournal.com
Yeah, but I was curious.

...Actually, that answers both. Yeah, but I was curious.

And I think I shall never be horrified by things like legolas by Laura and the Eye of Argon again, so that's a reason for it, um, maybe? (Slightly preoccupied by what my brain seemed to consider the rational response to having read it but um. Oh well.)

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