Response Centre #24601

Home of Maria and Crispin, Department of Mary-Sues, freelance

Mission #8: Brianna, a tale of a battlemaid

 

Disclaimer: The PPC is the creation of the amazing Jay and Acacia, whose pencils I am not fit to sharpen.  The Lord of the Rings is the creation of J.R.R. Tolkien, whose pen I am not fit to refill with ink.   “Brianna, a tale of a battlemaid” is the creation of DitzCat, whose writing career I wish I could terminate.

All Minis belong to their respective continua, which belong to their respective authors, and the original concept of Minis belongs to Miss Cam.

Second Disclaimer: Any derogatory opinions expressed herein regarding slash or Canada, among other things, are those of the characters and do not necessarily reflect those of the author. 

The Mission:

The knocking on the Response Centre door somehow sounded ominous.  Crispin shoved Repicheep off his lap and went to answer it.

A boy with red skin and darker red hair, with a flashpatch of a rubber duck, stood in the hallway.  “Hi.  Are you Crispin Reed?”

“Um, yeah.”

“I’m Rouge, from RC #9430, down the hall.  Well, it’s sometimes down the hall.  Your partner and my partner tried to kill each other this morning, and they’re in Medical right now.  Thought you’d like to know.”

“What?” Crispin yelled.  Rouge covered his ears.  Crispin lowered his voice.  “Sorry.  Let me guess; your partner’s Michel Javert, right?”

“Yes.”

“When you say, ‘tried to kill each other,’ you don’t really mean…”

Rouge grimaced.  “Let me put it this way: there are bloodstains on the Cafeteria floor, and I understand that there was bludgeoning involved.”

“Glaurung.”

***

Michel examined himself in the mirror.  One of Falcone’s attacks had left a nasty gash that went across his forehead, splitting his eyebrow and stopping just short of his right eye.  It had finally stopped bleeding.  Maybe this would deter the glompers.  “I have to admit, Falcone, you have a lot of power behind your blows for someone of your size.”

Maria came up behind him, holding a bandage to her split lip.  “I’ll ignore the jab at my height and take that as a compliment.  You weren’t bad, yourself.”

“Thank you.”  He looked at the mirror again.  “Do you think this could scar?  I think it makes me significantly less attractive.”

“It’ll probably make you look romantically adventurous.  If it makes you feel any better, Javert, I didn’t think you were that attractive to begin with.”

“Thanks,” Michel growled. 

Crispin burst into Medical, with Michel’s partner behind him.  “Maria, what happened?”

Maria tried to smile, then winced as her lip burst into pain.  “My lip met Javert’s cane, and his head met my truncheon.  I’m okay, really.”

“No, you’re not,” a nurse scolded her.  “And you need to sit down.”  She turned to Crispin and Rouge.  “Both of them have mild concussions.  They need to stay here for a while.”

“We’re really fine,” Michel protested, and tried to push past the nurse.  She glared at him, and he decided that maybe sitting down was a good idea.

“What the cruk were you two doing?” Crispin demanded.  “Did you honestly try to kill each other?”

Oui,” said Michel.

“We were debating the merits of ‘Stars’ versus ‘Noir ou Blanc,’” Maria explained.  At Crispin’s blank look, she added, “Two of the elder Javert’s major songs in the musical.”

“‘Stars’ is entirely out-of-character,” Michel argued.  “The novel explicitly states that my father was not a religious man, certainly not in the manner presented…”

“We get the point,” Rouge cut in.  “But did your debate really need to involve blunt instruments?”

“Of course,” said Maria.  “Well, we could have used pointy ones, but the blunt ones were handier.”

“That’s not what he meant,” said Crispin.

The nurse interrupted again.  “They really need to rest.  Would you mind leaving?”  She glowered at Crispin and Rouge, making it clear that they were going to leave, whether they minded or not.

Outside Medical, Rouge doubled over laughing.  “I think I’ve been in Bad Slash too long.”

“Huh?” 

“Those two…all I could think about was that if this were a fic, they probably would have been making out by now.”

“WHAT?”

“You must have seen it in Suefics.  Bilingual screaming and a few murder attempts are invariably the signs of passionate love.”

The idea of Maria and Michel feeling anything other than hatred towards each other was so ludicrous that Crispin was left speechless.  He stared incredulously at the Slasher.

Rouge continued.  “You’re into Doctor Who, yeah?  Why do you think Doctor/Master is such a popular pairing?”

“Well, actually, I don’t usually read that stuff…slash isn’t really my thing.”  The speechlessness was wearing off.

Rouge glanced around surreptitiously before whispering, “To be honest, it isn’t mine, either.  I don’t like shipfic of any kind that much.  But being in this department…I can’t get away from it, and it’s started messing with my head.”

“Then why are you in Bad Slash?”  The Flowers didn’t usually pay much attention to Agents’ preferences, but there were some things that Crispin thought were standard.  DOGA Agents liked fire, Assassins liked killing things, and Slashers liked...well, slash.

“I wanted a transfer, after my…after the Invasion, and I made the mistake of saying I didn’t care where I ended up.  So now I’m a Slasher."

"Where were you before?"  Crispin briefly considered asked what had happened during the Invasion, but something in Rouge's eyes implied that this would be like asking the Doctor what happened during the Time War.  Not A Good Idea.

"Technical Errors.  I never thought I'd miss the showers of commas."

They turned a corner and found themselves in front of RC #9430.  There was no sign of Crispin's RC, even though the two were frequently in the same hallway.  That was how HQ worked sometimes.

The Agents exchanged casual good-byes, and Crispin set off in search of his RC.  He'd walked no more than two steps when a familiar "BEEEEEEP" came from #9430, followed by Rouge shouting "Crispin!  Can you come in here?"

Crispin poked his head into the Response Centre.  Rouge was in the process of adding several dangerous-looking knives to his belt.  "They're sending me on a mission," the Slasher complained.  "Since our partners are both in Medical, any chance you'd help me out?  There's a Sue in this."

Crispin tried to think of a nice way of saying that he'd rather read C*l*br**n than go into a slash fic.

"The Sue isn't in the slashy bits," Rouge added.  "If you could just take care of her, I can handle the exorcisms myself."

"Well...okay, I guess."

"Great!  Let's go!"

***

"You couldn't hide anyway, with that red hair. It stands out a mile away in the green."
"Good thing I'm not full Elf then, if that's your opinion."
"Full Elf? How much Elf is there then?" He asked disdainfully.
"A quarter. My mother's father was full Elfish. He was an Elf of Rivendell, traveling through the countryside near Bree."

"Elfish," Rouge repeated with disdain.  "Elfish.  And poor capitalization.  As well as poor sentence structure.  And according to the Words, the 'Elfish' grandfather is Elrond, who is not a full Elf.  He's called Halfelven for a reason!  And quarter-elves--which do technically exist, even though I don't think they're ever called that--do NOT work that way!"  As he ranted, he wrote down the charges with one hand and clutched his knife with the other.

Crispin pointed Michel's CAD, which he had borrowed, at the Sue.

[Brianna.  Quarter-Elf Female.  Mary-Sue.]

He waited for a moment for the expected useful or snarky comment, then remembered that most CADs, unlike his own, were not sentient and didn't usually talk to people.  This was somewhat disappointing.

***

Back in Medical, Michel covered his ears and pretended that the incessant singing from his sworn enemy was not bothering him in the slightest. 

« A la volonté du peuple,

Et à la santé du progrès

Remplis ton cœur d’un vin rebelle

Et à demain, ami fidèle… »

Maria glanced over at the agent in the bed beside her.  He was trying to look unconcerned, but she was getting to him.  She’d learned last week that anything related to Enjolras and his fellow students was guaranteed to drive him crazy.  « Nous voulons faire la lumière… »

“Will you stop that?” Michel snapped.  

“Oh, is it bothering you?”

“I’ve just got a slight headache after you almost cracked my skull open this morning.”

“You started it.”

Michel rubbed the gash on his forehead, which was still throbbing.  “You were the one singing ‘Stars’ at the top of your lungs in the Cafeteria.”

“How was I to know you’d take offense?  You’re from musicalverse, aren’t you?”

“I’m from a Suefic.  I didn’t even know what canon was until I was recruited.  And I’m from French musicalverse.  If you’d sung ‘Sous Les Étoiles,’ I might have been slightly less annoyed.  Slightly.  It’s still a travesty, but it sounds better in French.”

“Really? 

Noir, plus noir que la nuit,
Est cet homme qui s'enfuit
Sous les étoiles.
Sous les étoiles
…”

Michel covered his ears with a pillow.  “Your accent is horrible, you know.”

“What’s wrong with my accent?”  Maria’s voice went up a few octaves in outrage.  She’d been speaking French almost as long as she’d been speaking English, and her accent was perfectly fine.

“You slur everything.  Who taught you French?”

“My grandparents.  In Quebec.”

“Ah.”  Michel buried himself further in the pillow, muttering something about “Québécois.” 

“Do you have a problem with Canada?”  Maria reached under the bed and grabbed her truncheon, which she had hidden from the nurses.  “Javert, je vous parle…

***

"I don't think Bree works that way," Crispin said, as the Sue moaned about her angsty past to a sympathetic Aragorn and Legolas.  "I'm sure Bree doesn't work that way."

"Between this and Elrond seducing the Sue's grandmother, I'm surprised they didn't send this to the Division of Bad Het," said Rouge.

"In my village, if a single man and his friends find you alone, he can 'claim' you."
"Claim?"
"By spreading my legs and taking me by force," Her mind flashes to that hot summer afternoon, when berry picking for her mother, she had been the one claimed despite her pleas for him to stop,

"Glod, the poor commas."  Rouge checked the canons.

[Aragorn/Elessar/Estel/Etc.  Dunadan Male.  Canon.  OOC: 57%]

[Legolas Thranduilion.  Elf Male.  Canon.  OOC: 100.^$#&*% WARNING!  CHARACTER RUPTURE!  MR. JELLY IS COMING!  DO YOU WISH TO RESTART YOUR PUDDING?]

"No, I do not wish to restart my pudding," said Rouge as he turned off the smoking CAD.  "Thank you for asking."

The Sue was still unloading the exposition.

"Ma was 38 or so I think, but you'd swear she was 20 or something. All the other women in our village were green with envy because she didn't need to dye her hair or anything. Ma said it was 'cause of her Elven blood.

"One, that's not how half-elves work," Crispin muttered.  "And two, I don't think most middle-aged women in small medieval villages dyed their hair."

"Add Temporal Offenses to our list of departments to which this could have been sent."

They portalled past the rest of the exposition, and arrived just in time to catch Legolas being a Peeping Tom.  Rouge tightened his grip on his knives and frowned menacingly.  "Legolas is not Jiraya," he growled.  "Legolas does not spy on naked women.  Ever."

Her nipples tightened when exposed to the colder air. He longed to suckle at them like a child; no Elven maiden had such soft, abundant breasts. And he should know, having bedded many of them.

"He WHAT?" both agents shouted in unison.  Rouge pulled Crispin behind a tree to avoid the characters' notice.  "That's just wrong," Crispin whimpered. 

"I really don't think this should have been rated T," said Rouge.  "He goes on to describe pretty much every part of her anatomy."  He removed several books of canon, a large bell, some chalk, and a novelty candle shaped like a toad from his bag.  "Legolas is going to go off 'hunting' with Aragorn.  You stay with the Sue."

Crispin had no objections.  If the slash was half as bad as the het, he didn't want to be anywhere near it.  "Have fun."

***

Rouge was glad that Michel wasn't there.  Having come to the PPC from nineteenth century Paris, Michel was still getting used to the idea of girls in trousers.  Their first (and, so far, only) mission together had been distressing because it had involved Michel's canonical father, but it hadn't been too graphic for Agent Javert's old-fashioned sensibilities.  The scene before Rouge now, on the other hand, would have been too much for Michel.

"Why did I have to transfer?" Rouge asked himself.  "Why couldn't I just stay in DTE?"

Because of Hamelt, said a small, annoying voice in his head.  Because he couldn't have handled walking down the same corridor where That Incident had happened.  Everything in the Department of Technical Errors reminded Rouge of his unfortunate partner.  He needed to get away from it.

"But did I have to get away into Bad Slash?"

"And I wouldn't worry about Arwen either. She understands about things like this, and she knows it has no effect on your feelings for her." Legolas continued whimsically, as Aragorn blanched.
"She never said! You bloody Elf! When did you tell her?"
"When we returned to Rivendell that time. She thanked me for looking after you, and teaching you so well."

"THAT DOES IT."

Rouge jumped out of the tree in which he was hiding and landed on Aragorn.  He began beating the Dunadan soundly over the head with The Fellowship of the Ring.  "Avaunt, Uncanonical Open Marriage!  Aroint Thee, Bad Characterization!  Begone, Bad Slash! The power of TOLKIEN compels thee!"

A wispy author wraith floated out, whining, "But they're so hot..." before dissipating.  Rouge turned to Legolas and repeated the process, punctuating his shouts with rings of the large bell.

"Avaunt, Perviness!  Begone, More Perviness!  The power of TOLKIEN compels thee!"

***

"Brianna of no surname, you are charged with using the word 'Elfish,' poor capitalization, poor sentence structure, altering the parentage of Elrond Peredhil--note the Peredhil part--being a quarter-elf, altering the social structure and sexual practices of Bree and Mirkwood, comma abuse, causing severe OOCness in the character of King Elessar, causing a rupture in the character of Legolas Thranduilion, altering the physical characteristics of half-elves, being the granddaughter of Elrond Peredhil, mentioning anachronistic materials--namely, hair dye--turning Legolas Thranduilion into a pervert, and being a Mary-Sue.  For these crimes you are sentenced to die.  Good-bye."

As the last few bits of the Sue were consumed by the fire, Rouge came up behind Crispin.  "No problems with the assassination?"

"Nope."  The Sue, who spent the entire fic crying and moaning, did not put up much of a fight.  "Can we go back now?"

***

There was more shouting than usual in Medical.  Three nurses were holding onto the arms of a furious Maria, and four more restrained an equally furious Michel.  Maria was singing the Canadian national anthem (in French) at the top of her lungs, while Javert shouted a string of what Crispin assumed were insults (also in French).  Two more nurses attempted to confiscate the agents’ respective weapons.

“That can’t be good for their concussions,” Rouge commented.

"Je vais vous tuer!" Maria screeched at Michel.  "Je vais vous TUER!"

The nurse from earlier came up to Rouge and Crispin.  "You can take your partners back to your Response Centres now," she said.

"But didn't you say they had to stay here?" asked Crispin.

"Now," the nurse repeated. 

Crispin took the hint.  "Okay.  Come on, Maria.  Let's go."  He tried to take his partner by the shoulders and lead her out, but she was not cooperating.

"I don't want to go.  I want to kill him."

"You can kill him later."  Or not, he added silently.  "The Minis have been alone for hours.  Um, nice to meet you, Rouge."

Maria continued to protest all the way back to their RC.  "I wanted to kill him.  No one insults Canada in front of me and gets away with it!"

"He insulted Canada?" 

Any further explanation or complaint was preempted by all four of the pair's Minis rushing them the moment the door was opened.  All of them went for Maria, except for Benjamain, who immediately lunged at Crispin's carotid artery.  Crispin was screaming so loudly that they barely heard the dreaded sound of the console.

[BEEEEEEEEP!]

 

Notes:

All songs mentioned are from the musical Les Misérables, either the English version (“Stars”), the 1980 French studio version (“A la Volonté du Peuple”; “Noir ou Blanc”), or the 1991 Paris Revival version (“Sous Les Étoiles”).  French songs are by Alain Boubil and Claude-Michel Schönberg.  English songs were translated and adapted by Herbert Kretzmer.  Les Misérables the novel was written by Victor Hugo.

A very rough translation of the French lyrics:

“By the will of the people

For the wellbeing of progress

Fill your heart with rebel wine

And tomorrow, faithful friend

We will bring light…”

“Black, darker than night,

Is this man who flees

Beneath the stars.

Beneath the stars…”

(While I don’t share Agent Javert’s hatred of the English musical, we are in agreement that the songs sound better in French.)

Doctor Who and all related topics belong to the BBC.

Jiraya is from Naruto, which belongs to Masashi Kishimoto.

The Canadian national anthem belongs to…um, Canada, I guess. 

A brief note on Maria’s linguistic background, for anyone who’s confused: Maria grew up in New Hampshire, USA.  Her mother’s family lives in French-speaking Quebec, which is just north of New Hampshire, and Maria learned French as a child to speak to her maternal grandparents.  Québécois French is very different from Parisian, which is what Michel speaks.  Maria also took French in school, so her grammar is more standard, but she has a noticeable Québécois accent.

If anyone cares, Maria is screaming "I am going to KILL you!"