ysabetwordsmith: (Schrodinger's Heroes)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This story fills a square on my second card for the [community profile] cottoncandy_bingo fest. This fest encourages people to create and share material focused on what is variously called fluff, schmoop, gentle fiction, light reading, comfort reading, positive thinking, chicken soup for the soul, or anything else that offers a fun alternative to usual run of sex, violence, and angst of modern media. I'm hoping to attract some new readers for my writing.

The following story belongs to Schrodinger's Heroes, featuring an apocryphal television show supported by an imaginary fandom. It's science fiction about quantum physics and saving the world from alternate dimensions. It features a very mixed cast in terms of ethnicity and sexual orientation. This project developed with input from multiple people, and it's open for everyone to play in. You can read more about the background, the characters, and a bunch of assorted content on the menu page.

This is actually the first piece I've written about fans of the show, rather than the characters within the show itself. (It will make more sense if you've read the background material, especially "About the Show," "Aired Episodes," and "Unaired Episodes.") In this case, the Avengers are all great big fangeeks, and they happen to love Schrodinger's Heroes. There are also references to assorted other fanac hijinks. As sometimes happens with Schrodinger's Heroes, various relationships among the Avengers are hinted rather than specified. So you can pretty much fill out the shipping manifest with your favorite combination(s).

Begin with Part 1, Part 2. Skip to Part 5.


Fandom: Avengers/Original (Schrodinger's Heroes)
Prompt: Crush / Infatuation
Medium: Fiction
Summary: The Avengers and friends watch television together and discuss how much they wish for the return of a favorite show.
Content Notes: Fluff. Meta. An assortment of crushes, squishes, infatuations, and admirations. Team bonding. Patching up dysfunctions. Friendship. Science jokes. Avengers geeking out. Pepper is perfect. Tony is a jerk but he's OUR jerk. Steve is homesick for his former time. Phil is the puppy-est fanboy in the history of ever. Some references to real people, but all offstage.


"Saving the Heroes" Part 3


As the credits rolled, Bruce said, "This episode proved really popular among black fans, because it introduced the whole friendship between Pat and Chris -- and especially because Pat survived  someone trying to kill him. It was an early clue that this show could think outside the box."

"Then why was the show cancelled, if it was so popular?" Steve asked.

"Well, there were money problems and legal arguments and --" Bruce began.

"No, the show got cancelled because Justin Hammer's cousin is a gigantic dick!"  Tony snapped.

"Jonathan Thomas Farkendorker is Hammer's cousin?" Rhodey said.

"Yep," Tony said.

Rhodey groaned. "That explains a lot."

"Didn't Farkendorker get thrown out of WorldCon once, too? It's not just Phil," said Bruce.

"Thrown out of a second-story window into the swimming pool," Tony said. "He tried to approach some people with a new project idea and they rejected it forcefully. WorldCon usually doesn't see that level of fanac hijinks."

"I wish I could go to WorldCon again," Steve said wistfully. "I haven't been since the first one in 1939."

"You were at the first WorldCon?"  Bruce said. "Don't take this the wrong way, Steve, but I kind of hate you right now."

"You know, I would've been satisfied with just your badge," Phil said to Steve.

"I wouldn't," Steve said. His apology for not signing Phil's original run of Captain America trading cards -- and what had later happened to those cards -- had been his convention booklet autographed by John W. Campbell Jr., Isaac Asimov, L. Sprague de Camp, Ray Bradbury, and Harry Harrison. Well, that and punching Nick Fury in the face. Phil had forgiven Steve on the spot. Nobody had forgiven Fury yet.

"I wish I could go back to WorldCon too, but they'll never let me after that incident over the autograph," Phil said.

"Ah, don't sweat it, we can get you in. I mean, come on, they let Harlan Ellison  in," said Tony.

"I'm not going if he's on the guest list," Natasha said instantly.

"But --" Tony began.

"No,"  Natasha said, holding up a hand. "Tony Stark, not even you  have enough money to pay me to deal with Harlan a second time."

The next episode was 'Snips and Snails,' which started with the birthday party for Chris. Tony pointed out the team's assorted t-shirts, a running gag throughout the show. "I actually have one like Alex is wearing," he said. It read I'm with genius  underneath an upward arrow.

"Of course you do," Phil muttered.

"We should get the Chris shirt for Thor," Clint suggested. That read Elemental BeEr. "Jane would think it's hilarious, because you know, science and Thor."

Once into the main plot, however, they fell quiet. The sex-change episode always hit hard for those of them who already knew it -- despite its whimsical scenes -- and Steve fared no better. All the Avengers had experience with having their identity suddenly turned wrongside-out. As Quinn helped the other teammates cope with the changes, Steve said quietly, "I wish I had Quinn to lean on when the world goes cockeyed on me."

"Don't we all," Bruce said.

By then it was supper time. Tony had ordered Chinese, and when it arrived, supper proved to consist almost entirely of dishes including noodles. Natasha threatened to stab him with her chopsticks if crab rangoons were not forthcoming. He tossed her the relevant bag from a safe distance.

"I don't see what you've got against lo mein,"  Clint said. "We should all be Touched by His Noodly Appendages."

"Pastafarianism goes with Italian food, not Chinese," Bruce interjected. "Flying Spaghetti  Monster, not lo mein  monster."

"No spoilers," said Rhodey.

"I just think it's a bit creepy  considering the content of the next episode," Natasha said.

"Natasha's creeped, okay, I'm done now," said Rhodey. "Let's stop talking and put the show on."

'A Can of Worms' began with Alex and Ash testing the scope of the Teflon Tesseract to see how far it could reach.

"It resembles the Bifrost more than the Tesseract," Thor said, "though no doubt Loki would grasp the finer points better than I."

"We're not showing this  episode to him either," Tony said. "He doesn't need inspiration on massive damage options."

"What damage?" Thor said.

Just then the screen filled with rubble and dust as most of a building landed, partly on Alex, inside the Ring. Soon Tim the Tentacle Monster emerged from the haze carrying a limp, bloody Alex.

"Oh wow, oh wow," Steve chanted under his breath, leaning forward, utterly rapt. Stacy Anderson's genius in special effects was worthy of worship; the alien rubble and the introduction of Tim were still counted among the crowning glories. "This almost reminds me of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea,  only it's so much better. The things people can do  these days!" Sometimes getting flung into the future didn't suck much at all.

And then it did, again. As the story unfolded, Tim made friends with the team, only to discover that they were unable to send him home. At the end he was stuck in an unfamiliar world, alone even in a crowd.

Steve started to cry. At first he tried to stifle it, but it just got worse, and finally he pulled out a handkerchief to blow his nose. "I hate this," he said.

"The heroes save everybody, but who saves the heroes, huh?"

"Steve, what's wrong?" Pepper asked.

"I lost so much time, television and movies now are nothing  like what I remember, there's almost never anything good on unless one of you hand-picks it for me, I finally find something I love and it's already gone  and I just want to go home!"  he wailed all one breath. Then he burst into tears.

Thor got to him first this time, bundled Steve into a blanket, and led him to one of the corner chairs away from the main group. They'd all gotten used to dealing with each other's sore spots. Steve got edgy if one person hovered over him too much, or everyone piled on at once. So they took turns now.

* * * 

Notes:

The first WorldCon happened in 1939.

The Flying Spaghetti Monster is the central figure in the religion of Pastafarianism.


[To be continued in Part 4 ...]

(no subject)

Date: 2012-12-18 08:30 am (UTC)
stardreamer: Meez headshot (Default)
From: [personal profile] stardreamer
Ohhh, nice. This is almost Shadow Unit level of ECR. Between the "first Worldcon" bit (and boy, do I sympathize with Bruce there!) and the ending... poor Steve. He must seriously identify with Tim.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-12-18 08:09 pm (UTC)
chanter_greenie: a blue-shaded dyed egg (not enough blue in the world)
From: [personal profile] chanter_greenie
*snuggles Cap* Awwww, sweetie. ... I just said that about Steve Rogers. Lord help me. :)

I know just enough about Avengers canon to be LOLing at the surprise!jerk!cousins. And oh man, now I want to see those WorldCon hijinks written out. Can you imagine if one of the actual SH team was in the crowd who slung Farkendorker into the pool? Ha! It could happen.

(no subject)

Date: 2013-01-06 05:35 am (UTC)
technoshaman: Tux (Default)
From: [personal profile] technoshaman
HA! HARLAN! I've had my own run-ins with Harlan... :D

And the FSM... I have an FSM sticker on my camping motorbike. I'd thought about taking it off (it came with it from previous owner), but I keep getting compliments.. :) ARRR! :)

and... poor Steve. (reads on..)

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