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Clark enjoys colors. The sunshine yellow of a field of ripe grain. The clear blue of the sky over Kansas. The warm red of a barn back home. He finds the bland gray and oatmeal and black of big city folk's clothes vague and wishy-washy. They're like little bugs trying to blend in with the dirt or a piece of bark, except they're really blending in with the concrete and steel of Metropolis. For people who are so loud and pushy they're surprisingly ignorable and forgettable. On the other hand, it's quite soothing how no one wears pink or purple.
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Sexually transmitted

When Clark suddenly developed micro-vision, he learned not to look too closely at his bed or his food. True, the cheese mites swimming around in his sandwich were sort of soothing and mindlessly entertaining like a load of laundry in the dryer, but the sight of them didn't exactly whet his appetite. The dust mites were worse, all over his pillow and on the quilt from home. He slept hovering in the air over the bed for a week before he got over his squeamishness.

And that is how he managed to infect seven girls with bed bugs before noticing.
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When I was in Smallville fandom, back in 2001-2002 I used to hang out with some fellow fangirls in an AIM chatroom. We were all slashers, and all pretty open minded about slash pairings, including incestuous slash (Lex/Lionel). However we disagreed very strongly about the character Lana, to the point where we had to stop even trying to discuss her. The general consensus was that Chloe was everything that is awesome (and if anyone disagreed, they didn't dare say so), but Lana was continuously bashed.

I think there were several reasons for this )

I wanted to look beyond the poor writing and uninspiring acting, suspend my disbelief and just go with who Lana supposedly was, taking it as a challenge to flesh her out, since she was a key figure in Clark's life, and I needed to make her worthy of his love in order to respect Clark, rather than out of any feminist desire to have a realistic girl on TV, but I gave up when my attempts were met with indifference or even rabid fury by other fans. I left Smallville fandom shortly after, and since then I haven't bothered rolling that particular boulder up the hill.

A lot of the women others have mentioned in their celebration of female characters are more or less of the same type as Lana. Their onscreen lives revolve around male characters, they're there to comment on male characters; to be sexual opportunities or challenges for male characters; to show that male characters are so wonderful that they can hang out with women, often two-fers; to be damsels in distress; to be mother-figures; to be the loving child figures without the tension of the expected power-struggle between sons and fathers (because girls never grow into women, at least not until they reach menopause or if they're ugly); they're there to unsettle male characters, lead them into temptation and attack them with their foul sexuality, etc. etc.

Often someone will say to me, isn't so-and-so a kick-ass heroine? I'll probably politely and not very convincingly agree, all the while going "meh" on the inside and feeling disgruntled. I don't want to have to do the leg work on fleshing out those characters! I'm done with that, and I'm done with being satisfied with substandard writing like that. I will not be silenced by a sop like an idealized, beautiful, smart, courageous, bantering kick-ass lust-object for fanboys like the hateful Lady Christina de Souza in Doctor Who. "But, but... she kicks ass?!" All the more to be a good trophy for the Doctor when she begs to accompany him, my friend.

The female characters I'm going to celebrate use their powers of awesomeness for their own good, rather than for the good of a male characters. They are the heroes of their own lives, not the supporting characters in some dude's life. I don't care how smoking hot Zoë Washburne is (very in case you're wondering), she is not the kind of character I want more of. I say that as a bitterly disappointed fangirl who was thrilled about Zoë after watching one episode of Firefly, only to realize the evil bait and switch Joss was playing on female Buffy fans.

Mehitabel Parr
One of three main characters in Sarah Monette's books Melusine, The Virtu and The Mirador. I came for the delicious slashiness, I stayed for the humor, suspense, and vivid characters and settings. The books are narrated from each of the main characters' POV, with very strong and individual voices. They overlap often, leading to interestingly contrasting views of the same events, but each character has their own life and subplot. Mehitabel grew up in a traveling circus, but ran away from home to become a classical actress in a respectable theater. She's good at her job, interested in other people, and in many ways just an ordinary single woman struggling to make ends meet in a stressful world and maybe find some happiness along the way. Because she's one of the main characters in a fantasy novel, of course she has to deal with a lot of challenges along the way, and she proves to be vulnerable, but with an unbendable spirit; unfair and kind of distant to her friends sometimes, but loyal and good when it comes down to it; funny, but kind of mean... she's totally awesome. She has believable flaws, and is no superhero, and when she triumphs or gets in a good zinger, it's impossible not to cheer for her.

Cordelia Naismith
The main character in Lois McMaster Bujold's books Shards of Honor and Barrayar, and an important supporting character in the rest of the Vorkosigan saga. Shards of Honor reads like slash. Cordelia is the captain of a survey ship who crashes on a planet where the only other person is a fearsome warrior from a paternalistic, very traditional culture that has recently been at war with Cordelia's people. In Cordelia's culture, sex and gender are a matter of personal preference, and many different sexual and gender orientations are recognized and celebrated. She happens to be female and a woman, but mainly identifies as a scientist and the leader of her crew in this context, but she is aware that gender roles are rigidly defined by society, not individual preference in Aral Vorkosigan's culture. Now the bookish geek must win the respect of and form an alliance with the aggressive and very physical warrior in order for both of them to survive. It's the perfect union of action adventure and a respect -> like -> love story free of icky gender roles.

To be continued
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Title: Strong Like Her
Feedback: always welcome
Fandom: Smallville
Characters: Lana and Chloe
Summary: Lana and Chloe camp in the woods
Rating: parent guided, for mild horror and staying up late
Warnings: none
read the story )
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Old Lech

Lex laughed weakly, and wiped the last tears of mirth from his cheeks, before pressing eject on the remote. He loved The Wedding Singer. He felt pretty confident this movie was one Clark would enjoy too.

Smiling languidly, he half turned in the couch, pulling his right leg up under him, and looked at his friend. His date.

Clark smiled back, his eyes shining happily and a flush in his cheeks. God, he was sexy...
"Great movie, Lex. Was that Billy Idol guy a real person?"

Lex put both feet back on the floor and turned to face the TV.
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New Friendship

Lex absently put down the sheaf of papers as he rooted in his pocket for more change. He found a crumpled dollar bill and an Indian head cent he wanted to give to Clark. He got out his billfold and smiled distractedly at Lana who was already waiting with a tray in her hand. Six credit cards and three hundred dollar bills. He glanced at the sign by the cash register that said The Talon didn't accept those.

Lana raised an eyebrow. Lex tried to look suave.

Lana laughed. "This one's on me."

Lex blushed, and smiled shyly.
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Clark paused to stretch and wipe his brow. The sun baked down on him, and even though the fence posts weren't heavy to someone with super-strength, the constant bending and fetching more posts from the truck-bed was giving him a good workout. This far from any roads he could let go and move naturally. He had even taken off his T-shirt, which he never did publicly, unless Pete was equally bared.

Next to half-naked Pete he could probably levitate and no-one would notice...

Clark adjusted himself furtively, and glanced around, then went back to work at normal human pace.
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Who needs 'em

Vicky scowled at the anorexic porn-star swizzle-stick.

"Fucking bald arsehole."

She desultorily stirred her drink, only looking up briefly to glare at the barkeep staring unabashedly down the front of her sharp business suit.

Something soft pressed against her back, and a sweet, exotic fragrance enveloped her.

"Yeah! Men are such guys," a squeaky voice breathed in her ear. Vicky lifted a bleary eye to the mirror, and saw only herself.

She looked over her shoulder at the gorgeous blonde smiling coyly at her. "Too right," she slurred, and knocked over her drink as she turned to grab her fantasy.
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Title: Mosaic Fragments
Feedback: always welcome
Fandom: Smallville
Pairing: Lex/Clark
Summary: Lex considers his relationship with Clark
Rating: all audiences
Warnings: none
read the story )