Sentinel x Daredevil ficlet for International Fanworks Day!

This is a short ficlet to celebrate International Fanworks Day 2017 (Feb 15). Ao3 prompted to write a short fic that has some of your favorite characters being fannish about some of your other favorite characters: a perfect opportunity for Blair Sandburg to geek out over Matt Murdock being a Sentinel! :D

=== Getting Back on Track

Matt was in his office trying to occupy his mind with the details of a pro bono eviction case when he heard a couple coming up the stairs: two men, both middle-aged but fit.

“Don’t go all Neanderthal this time, Jim, I’m begging you here.”

“You wound me, Chief.  By now don’t you think I’m secure in who I am?”

“Sure -- but old habits die hard.”

“Then you better make sure you keep it in your pants, and wipe that drool off your chin.”

“Jim!  Come on, man, this is purely professional.”

The door to the suite swung open and the two men came in.

Matt felt a creeping sensation he could only describe as hackles rising from the top of his head all down his spine. He rose to his feet but couldn’t bring himself to offer his hand to the men.

“Hey, there. You’re Matt Murdock?” the shorter man asked.

The taller man was staring at him.

The shorter one seemed so familiar somehow.

“Yes, and you are?” Matt asked.

“I’m sorry, my name is Blair Sandburg.  This is my partner, Jim Ellison.”

“How can I help you?” Matt asked. They were from out of town -- maybe the Pacific coast?  And they were definitely a couple.  Maybe they somehow thought they needed legal assistance to get hitched in the Big Apple?

“The question is, how can we help you!” the shorter guy, Sandburg, said, bouncing on his toes.

“Excuse me?” Matt said.  He leaned forward a little, bracing his hands far apart on his desk -- a position of strength in case the men were thinking of taking advantage of the blind man.

“Ha, ha, this never gets any easier,” Sandburg muttered nervously.

“Spit it out, Chief,” Ellison said.  He stood like a pillar, looming over the shoulder of his partner -- not overtly hostile, but certainly a potential threat.

“We saw that vid -- the one that went viral, you taking down the cops,” Sandburg said.  “Before the, ah, horns.”

“Armor,” Ellison said.  “Smart.  I like the horns, very eye-catching.”

“I’m not sure what you mean?” Matt said, keeping cool.  “I don’t watch a lot of videos…” he said, waving at his glasses.

Sandburg leaned in and whispered dramatically, “You’re the Devil of Hell’s Kitchen!’”

Matt frowned.  “Um, no?” But their hearts were steady.  They thought they had him.

“Blair, the point….” Ellison nudged.

“Of course!  Thanks, Jim, we flew all the way to New York City from Cascade, Washington, and I’m going to forget to get to the point.  The point is, Matt Murdock, you’re a Sentinel.”

Matt shook his head.  “I’m afraid I don’t know what that is… and I’m certainly not Daredevil.  Unless you’re looking for legal services, I won’t be of much help to you.”

“That’s what I’m saying, man!  We’re here to help you!” Sandburg was irrepressible.

“I don’t think… “ Matt began.

“Blair, maybe cut to the chase,” Ellison suggested.

Sandburg heaved a sigh.  “Okay, first of all, your fighting style is a dead giveaway.  A man whose eyes are obscured behind a black mask may not be blind -- but you have three-hundred-sixty degree awareness.  You can ‘see’ behind, above, and beneath you as well as straight ahead.  And, you tilt your head in a way that suggests echo-location.”

“The feet,” Ellison prompted.

“Yes! Most MMA fighters are light on their feet-- but you take every opportunity to plant both feet firmly.  Jim does the same thing -- to feel the vibrations through the surface you’re standing on.”

Matt felt his mouth drop open in shock.  He’d never told anyone about his feet -- not Foggy, not Elektra, not even Stick.

“What do you want?” he asked.

“Nothing,” Blair said. “Just, you know, we wanted to welcome you and your Guide to the club. Give you some pointers.  Warn you about rogue Sentinels.  That sort of thing.”

“Rogue Sentinels?” Matt asked.

“Sentinels --like you and Jim -- have extremely heightened senses, along with a strong instinctive urge to protect and defend your chosen territory.   Rogues-- they don’t settle down into a territory, and they can go pretty far off the rails, especially without a Guide.”

“What’s a Guide?” Matt asked, trying not to think too hard about going off the rails.

“Sidekick,” Ellison coughed, and even though facial expressions were not his strong point, Matt could see Ellison’s bright grin clearly.

“The sensory input can be a lot to handle,” Sandburg said, with exaggerated patience, “so the Guide helps the Sentinel stay focused. The Guide greatly improves the Sentinel’s quality of life, wouldn’t you agree, Jim.”

“Absolutely,” Jim said, sincerity dripping from his voice.

“So,” Blair said.  “Maybe we have a few beers, maybe trade a few tales about fighting crime with heightened senses, hm?”

Matt held still for a moment, searching out the two strangers.  Neither gave any hint of duplicity. They smelled like each other.  They’d shared a number of meals.  They stood within each other’s intimate radius.  Ellison’s big hands seemed to gravitate toward Blair’s shoulders.  And strangest of all, so naturally that Matt hadn’t even noticed, their hearts beat calmly in tandem.

“I maybe could tell a tale or two,” Matt said slowly.  “But I need to call someone first.  Please don’t listen in.”

“Sure,” Ellison said, and Blair nodded.

“Make yourselves comfortable -- I’ll only be a moment.”

Matt walked down into the street, into the chilly air of early spring.  The wind blew moist with fresh promise.  “Call Foggy,” Matt told his phone, hoping it was never too late to get back on track.

The actors who play Jim and Blair are now 58 and 47 respectively-- Blair is two years younger than me and Jim is ten years older.  Richard Burgi is getting plenty of work -- he was recently a serial killer on General Hospital!  Garrett Maggart is married and had a kid in 2015.  :) Weird facts that never cease to amaze: Garrett Maggart is what I refer to as a "racehorse" -- that is, his parents were both entertainers. So it's no surprise that his half sister is Fiona Apple, who incidentally looks just like him.  I also adore the vocal stylings of another Maggart sibling, Maude Maggart.  Here is a fantastic duet featuring Fiona and Maude.
 :D  What I recently found out is that Richard Burgi is also something of a racehorse!  His parents were musicians, and his brother, Chuck Burgi, is a drummer for Billy Joel!!  You can now purchase the full four season set of The Sentinel in a nice boxed set for about $45.  I recently did so, and that show holds up a lot better than I remember--- if you can tolerate the compulsory heterosexuality of the two leads.  :P There is a great meta series about the Sentinel on Ao3 by Zelempa.

I have a lot more head canon about rogue Sentinels especially as pertains to Jim's runaway mom, Matt's runaway mom, Elektra, Stick, and the Chaste.  Let me know if you are interested!!

song for LJ Idol (s10 wk8): In Extremis (No Comment)

If you'd like to vote for this song, here is the poll.  There are dozens of great entries!

poem for LJ Idol : "Where I'm From"

Where I’m From

Twilight air was heavy, ready for a storm.

Thousands of fireflies blinked on and off

between the rasping green blades of the cornfield,

messages to anyone who might be gazing down.

Thunder rolled down the valley.

Frogs peeped along the edge of the river,

and cattle called from the lower barns

to their calves, sent over to fattening pastures.

I moved on from the little clapboard country church

and the small town schools to the slightly wider world

of a southern women’s college.  Snow drifted down

onto the quad one muffled day out of the year.

Warm rooms and laughter in the dining hall,

organ music and choir robes, poetry

and Russian tea, too much wine, sisterhood.

Now a president’s helicopter chops the air overhead.

Traffic is a way of measuring time. Over a hundred languages

are spoken in these suburbs. Neighbors congregate

in mosques and temples, cathedrals and synagogues.

We go out to holes in the wall for tortillas, injera, naan, pappadum,

bi bim bab, pitas and hummus instead of white beans.

Where I’m from, a squirrel is a gift to be skinned and sealed into a vacuum pack,

To be stewed into gravy, served with baking soda biscuits.

Where I’ve come, squirrels dash up and down every oak,

and my little lap dog tries to bark them down, reverting to her wolfish DNA.

fiction for LJ Idol: "Changes fill my time"
This is fiction, for the LJ Idol prompt Heel Turn.

“Changes fill my time"

Up until a year ago, Maddy hated Led Zeppelin.

Two years ago, she hated the loud guitars and the singer’s nasal wailing.  Then Mom got hurt and things got weird.  Everything went downhill.  Mom had to go away.  They had to make her go to rehab, just like in that song where the singer says, no, no, no.

But when Mom came back, things didn’t get better, even though she was off the oxy.

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link to the song: Ten Years Gone

Tags: ,

Fear and the Heart of Love (LJ Idol week 5)
Fear and the Heart of Love

behind the cutCollapse )

LJ Idol, week 4: Figure Eights
“I don't skate to where the puck is. I skate to where the puck is going to be.” —Wayne Gretzky

When I was a little girl, I wanted to grow up to be Dolly Parton: beautiful, talented, famous and rich. I was a good singer and loved to perform at any opportunity.  Every so often someone would tell me I should move to Nashville. I would just laugh, because I’d never been more than sixty miles from home.  Nashville may as well have been another world.  So, I kept singing, learned to play piano, sang in choir, learned the guitar, and started writing lyrics.

This is not a story where I grow up to become Dolly Parton.

I went to college and double majored in English and Music. When my poetry teacher asked why we were studying poetry, I replied that I wanted to be a rockstar.  My dream of becoming Dolly had widened to include becoming Robert Plant or possibly Sting. (I actually dreamed of surpassing Sting.  His ability to mix a metaphor is shocking: “packed like lemmings into shiny metal boxes, contestants in a suicidal race!”)

This is not a story where I grow up to become Robert Plant or Sting, either.

I did very well in college and headed off to grad school, where I worked for two years to get an MFA in poetry.  I was the lead singer in a heavy metal band, and I wrote the melodies and the lyrics.  No, you’ve never heard of me.  Heavy Metal was not on the ascendant in the early 90s.  We did play a couple of gigs (literally two) and I’m still very proud of our demo.

I spent the next ten years getting a PhD in English lit and during that time, I realized that Academia wasn’t really where I wanted to be. By the time I finished my dissertation, I had already become a music teacher, the kind that comes to your house and teaches you or your kid how to play piano, how to sing and play guitar— how to bring into reality whatever musical dreams you have inside you.

I had a kid of my own and lost my high register.  So long Dolly, hello Odetta.

Now, I mostly perform at farmers markets and church events.  I still write songs. (I write songs to order — just ask!)   I never realized how much I would love helping kids and adults become musicians. It’s not a thing where I’m dreaming they’ll play at Carnegie Hall (though one of my newest students just told me that was her dream, and I’ll help her get there as best I can).  It’s more that music is so deeply a part of who I am and how I think.  Music enriches, calms and trains the brain.  Music reaches deep into the soul and lets your spirit soar.  Music provides a rhythm and a dance to everyday life.  Music puts shape to exuberance and sorrow, devotion and ferocity.  Music underscores everything in life.

Here’s a mouse, a tiny John Cusack, serenading the girl he dreams of going out with.

When my baby was born, I thought, I’ll do an experiment.  I’ll only expose him to perfectly tuned instruments, and see if he manages to keep his perfect pitch. The Suzuki theory is that babies are born with perfect pitch and only lose it when they are exposed to all the poorly tuned or untuned noises in the world.  So my kid now distinguishes pitch and key much more perfectly than I ever could, and he can’t stand Robert Plant, king of the bent note.

I’m always picking up a new instrument. The lap dulcimer, hammered dulcimer, and ukulele taunt me with their seductive strings, so easy to pick up and so hard to master.   The organ terrifies me--too many pedals!  The tin whistle exasperates, while the Native American flute soothes in its organic simplicity.

So here I am, 48, still haven’t taken the internet by storm.  People still say to me, “you should be a professional!” and I say, “actually, I am.”

Sometimes you’re the skater, calculating trajectories.  Sometimes you’re the puck, flying across an icy world, taking hit after hit.  And sometimes, the skater and the puck are slicing figure eights into the ice, perfectly harmonious, until the zamboni melts it all down into silence.

Real LJ Idol Week 4 entries and voting here

Foggy/Matt story, part 4: "Sang-froid"
Matt kept his cool.

Foggy was there.  He was right there, contemplating the cookies, like he had a hundred times before.

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Foggy/Matt story, part 3/4: "Kummerspeck"
Days passed, weeks, and the Devil didn’t show.  Pickpockets and muggers swarmed like rats to the Kitchen, playing now that Matt was away.

It was trivial and stupid and it made Foggy mad. Matt was gone, and the world’s only response was a slight rise in petty crime.
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Foggy/Matt story, part 2/4: "Jantelagen"
Matt came to, stifled his startle, and started trying to figure out where he was.
Read more...Collapse )

Foggy/Matt story, part 1/4: "Possum Ran Over My Grave"
For LJ Idol, we've had a break week, with four non-mandatory prompts, so I've decided to write a Matt/Foggy fanfic in four parts. Author's notes at the end of each part will explain a little more of my thought processes from prompt to story.  Thanks for reading!

Quick summary of Daredevil for those unfamiliar with the fandom: Defense attorney Matt Murdock (aka Daredevil) is blind, but the accident that took his eyesight left his other senses super heightened. Matt's father was a boxer, and he trained with a strict master called "Stick" to become a skilled martial artist.  Foggy Nelson was Matt's room mate at Columbia; they became best friends, went to law school together, and opened a law practice in Hell's Kitchen as partners. They are estranged because Matt lied to Foggy about his senses, and Foggy doesn't approve of Matt's life as a vigilante. Created by Stan Lee in 1964, Daredevil is now a Netflix series, with Charie Cox as Matt and Elden Henson as Foggy.

Please note: this story is Gen, deep friendship between Matt and Foggy. Takes place after Netflix Season 2. 


Foggy nodded at the bartender, and she poured them another round. The bartender’s name was Madison, not Josie, and she was pouring the Macallan, not the Eel.Read more...Collapse )


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