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Friday, July 7th, 2017 09:33 am
[community profile] auexchange 2017:

Hello dear author!

Thank you so much for writing for me - I really appreciate the effort you're going to put into this! Writing AUs is always tricky for the amount of backstory that has to go into them (particularly for fusion AUs), and I love seeing the work in little bits and pieces through your story!

My primary desire for all these requests is a story about the women.

things I like
- women at the centre of the narrative, fuelling the action, thinking, feeling, acting, having agency, or using what agency they have in the most effective way they have
- female friendships: women working together, respecting each other's skills, valuing each others' differences, even if they don't like each other
- respectful heterosexual relationships: men who respect women as people, who treat women as people, who love women as individuals; women who struggle to trust but still choose to trust, even as they find ways to be who they need to be. (I hold to the view that if we can't model such relationships in fiction, then we will never see them in real life.)
- I prefer fusions (characters from one universe fused into another as though they've always been in the second universe) to crossovers (characters from two universes encountering each other with the canon history from their universe)
- my thoughts on fusion AUs as a guide to help you if you're stuck about how to proceed
- worldbuilding

do not wants
- slash, even background slash (I have specific slash preferences, it's easier just to say 'no slash' than to try to navigate the permissible)
- refrigerated/ignored female characters (even if one of the fandoms is guy-heavy, you can go light on the guys and just give me the female characters)
- deathfic, hopelessness, downer endings

MCU and TV
Maria Hill
Relationship: Maria Hill & Natasha Romanov
Relationship: Maria Hill & Pepper Potts

Maria is my favourite character in the extended MCU - an ordinary woman, who gets things done, flies under the radar, and is recognised in her competence by most hero characters.

I love what's implied about her relationship with Pepper in a single phonecall in the Agents of SHIELD TV series, where she bitches about her day to the CEO of Stark Industries, who has time to take her call, and the intimacy to take her rant.

I think that Maria and Natasha, in spite of having nearly no dialogue with each other through the movies, would either be one of those 'total respect' relationships, or else a friendship that looks nothing like sitcom female friendship (men, clothes, catty remarks).

Either relationship, or both, please!

AU: Pepper Potts and Maria Hill in Civil War: So I think there’s a cogent reason that neither Maria, nor Pepper, were in Civil War – because neither of these women would let Tony and Steve tear up the landscape, either over the Accords or over Bucky.
AU: Maria Hill in Civil War : A simpler version of Maria & Pepper in CW. Please note: I want the considered, canny Maria Hill of MCU (trusted by Fury, Steve, Pepper, and Tony) rather than the comics version. And I’d like her to be key in whatever solution or thing is worked out. (I kind of think that Maria would kidnap Bucky, get him on her side, and then use her contacts throughout the world to sort out the UN bombing business, but that's just me.)
AU: Maria Hill lifts Thor's Hammer: I like this idea – the implication of AoU is that none of the guys are ‘worthy’ (except Thor), but while Natasha was offered the chance she refused, and they never even asked Maria. I think this is an oversight, and I would love to read the story that results from Maria being considered worthy!
AU: The team took more than three minutes to discuss the Accords in Civil War : Would be nice if there was a lead-up to one of the biggest pieces of international legislation drafted since WWII.
AU: Jaegers : Pacific Rim is one of my favourite fun 'action-sci-fi' movies, but there was a serious lack of women in the setup. I don't mind if Maria, Pepper, or Natasha are pilots or admin staff, just so long as the story centers around them.
AU: All-Female Avengers team : I would love to see any iteration of this, adding any of the MCU female characters in (including Skye, Melinda May, Jane Foster, and Sif), so long as the main story is around Maria, Maria & Pepper, or Maria & Natasha.

Maria Hill
Relationship: Maria Hill/Steve Rogers

The movies don't detail Maria much, while the comics are downright negative; however I see her as the epitome of what you want a 'mere human' to be in the mess of superheroes and alien invasions - practical, pragmatic, compassionate, personally involved, willing to ask questions, and able to challenge the status quo. Steve, for his part, clearly trusts Maria at her word, even if he doesn't agree with her opinions and perspectives, and is comfortable in taking her teasing. Together, I think they'd be awesome - Maria the pragmatic, and Steve the romantic, backing each other up in a crisis, fighting and fucking and generally being awesome together.

AU: NHL Hockey : My headcanons for a hockey AU are based off Philyra's 'Get Ready For It' series, where Maria is the first female player in the NHL. However, if you want to do the current situation with the Women's Hockey Leagues and write the girls on teams, shenanigans, and EPIC chirping when they realise Steve Rogers is madly crushing on Maria Hill who thinks he's just a stats nerd like she is...I will not object. :)
AU: Steve and Bucky find each other again in a different way after the events of CA:TWS : How does Maria facilitate this (because she would - Steve is still busy Avengering) and then how does she deal with Bucky and Steve's relationship? Please don't do the Standard Jealous Woman trope. DO NOT WANT.
AU: Arranged Marriage : Duty first - perhaps a marriage of human and superhuman in a gesture of good will - and then, unexpectedly, affection and friendship and love. Although, frankly, I'm good with whatever you come up with for this so long as it's about them earning their happy ending - hit me with it!
AU: stranded on another Earth with a different set of superheroes : this one could be interesting with Maria the one doing the universe-hopping and either getting into a relationship with Steve, or dealing with the loss of the one she left behind. Or Steve dealing with an AU Maria who's a lot less friendly, and missing the woman who's his friend and lover?
AU: Jaegers : They don't have to be Drift Compatible, but something about how they
AU: Maria Hill lifts Thor's Hammer: How does Steve feel about being Captain America...and the lover of the Queen of the Universe? Does Maria then feel torn about her implied duties regarding the universe, vs. Steve and her duty to Earth?
AU: Maria Hill in Civil War: I'm sure you can come up with better than the MCU version of Civil War (in which the solely human, non-hero character with the 'in' to the Avengers, SHIELD, and politics was completely left out), and certainly something better than the trashfire of the original comics version of Civil War (in which Maria is a heartless bitch) which had no moderation in anyone anywhere.

Buffy and Angel
Faith Lehane
Relationship: Faith Lehane/Wesley Wyndham-Pryce
Relationship: Faith and Angel & Wesley & Gunn & Fred & Lorne
Relationship: Faith Lehane & Gunn

Faith. Faith and her redemption arc. Faith and growing up. Faith and surviving. I would have loved that 'Faith the Vampire Slayer' spinoff series - preferably with various members of the Fang Gang and the Slayer Scoobies being involved, contact with Buffy and anyone else keeping an eye on any/all of the Hellmouths around the place.

My OTP for this fandom is Faith/Wes, circa Season 4 when they're working together to stop the Beast and get Angel back from Angelus - once Wes has his 'edge'. That said, I have a great fondness for Faith and Gunn working together - a couple of former street kids who know survival and tough times.

Note: I haven't read the comics (or, at least, I don't remember what happens in the comics), so I don't know

AU: Slayers have telepathic/empathic bonds with their Watchers: Can you imagine Faith and Wes bonded to each other during Season 3-4 of Buffy? Or maybe the bond doesn't kick in until certain conditions have been met, and Wes and Faith don't meet them until S4 of Angel - at which point the bond kicks in and they're both a little staggered by it? Or, perhaps, an outsider perspective of Wes and Faith dealing with the bond from the POV of the Fang Gang - how they feel about it. (Perhaps especially Fred, although I don't actually like Fred/Wes - my prefs lie with Fred/Gunn.)

AU: Angel Season Five Has Faith: I didn't actually see Angel S5, so I have no problem with just about anything that you come up with for this! Take on Wolfram and Hart, avert the End Of Days, have Faith walk into the Fang Gang at W&H and turn everything over... Go wild with your imagination and I will be fascinated and delighted by what you produce!

Merlin (TV)
Relationship: Gwen & Merlin
Relationship: Gwen & Gwaine
Relationship: Arthur Pendragon/Gwen
Relationship: Arthur & Gwen & Merlin & Morgana

Gwen, Gwen, Gwen, Gwen, Gwen! I loved that they made her a servant and a black woman in Camelot, and regret that her friendships with Merlin, Gwaine, and Morgana weren't really explored. This is your chance! I'm not at all into Arthur/Merlin, although I do enjoy their friendship, however that dynamic should be in the background, or else equally shared around in the case of the OT4. I also have a soft spot for that Merlin sedoretu fic that was making the rounds when the show first began - if that's your thing!

Fair warning, I kind of stopped watching at the end of S3 - couldn't bring myself to pick it back up again, and the way everyone responded to the ending of the series didn't really encourage me to keep going.

AU: Merlin tells Morgana he has magic/helps her in 2x03: I feel a certain sympathy for Morgana, being told that magic is evil, that she is evil, that there's nothing they can do but suppress it...while Merlin goes about merrily practising his magic in unobtrusive ways. UGH.
AU: Gwen and Arthur find out about Merlin's Magic : The continued hiding of Merlin's magic from everyone kind of pissed me off. If you want to change this so the others find out, realise, are told, and how they react. I think Arthur would struggle with the 'but magic is evil' line that he learned from his father and which his experience tells him; while Gwen would be more likely to trust in Merlin's heart (and with her 'commoner' practicality, assume that magic could be useful at a ground level).
AU: Morgana doesn't turn evil: I imagine this more to be the OT4 option, but take it however you like!
AU: Black Jewels: This is a personal fondness of mine - a blend of the Black Jewels fantasy universe where Gwen is Queen, Arthur a Warlord Prince, Morgana a Black Widow, and Merlin a Prince. However, so long as Gwen is Queen, I don't mind how the rest of it goes. This one would be interesting if Gwaine comes into the story - whatever his caste - a charming male joining the court, amusing the women, and befriending Merlin...
AU: Arthur doesn't die: Give me the Golden Age of Camelot that Merlin was promised, Arthur as King, Gwen as his Queen, ruling a united Alba.


So all of these are just ideas; if you can't manage any of them, then please go for the character/relationship and the AU that we matched on, and write what you can.

I look forward to reading your work!


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