Sir Edmund only intended a sea voyage to inspect his property abroad: but when his ship is taken by pirates, the dastardly pirate captain Fell Mort has other plans for him… Is he a captive, is he booty, and why does the captain find him fatally attractive?
Finished Ellen Klages’ ‘Time Gypsy’, and for once the critics are right – pretty awesome. The MCs are really likeable, their gradually developing romance is touching and believable. (I say gradually, but – well, read it and find out.) The actual sex is a little clunky and clichéd – I said clichéd, people, not cliché, that’s right – but the romance is lovely.
But it’s not just a lovely lesbian romance with a little skipping up and down the decades thrown in. For a short story, it packs a lot of serious ideas and musings in there. How far the LGBTQ movement has come – and how far it hasn’t – in a few short decades. About time travel as a tool for plagiarism and stealing credit for other people’s ideas. About normalisation and minimisation of abuse of ‘other’ed and excluded groups. About the struggle of women to forge a place in the groves of academe, to be heard, to hack out a route through the hazing and silencing and double standards. About co-operation, solidarity, true friendship and fake collegiality.
It’s about time-travel itself, though, don’t forget that. And purely as a time-travel romp, it’s a ton of fun and lifts the heart, is joyful despite the seriousness of much of what’s discussed. If you love time-travel or you love (gay) love, this is a yes, this is a rec.
Image – public domain, photo by Bernard Spragg NZ of an artwork Passing Time by Auckland-based sculptor Anton Parsons.
Tim is a Shifter, a were-person – and he tends to keep quiet about it. Mostly because he isn’t a werewolf, or a were-jaguar, or anything cool. No, he’s a were-domestic cat. Nothing wrong with that, right? But not exactly glamorous, just the same. So when he gets a huge crush on his next-door-neighbour, he doesn’t exactly spread the news around. Which makes it a little difficult when a witch puts a spell on him that has him stuck in his were-form, as Tibbles…
Something about it unfroze Adam’s vocal cords, at least. “I was in the shower,” he blurted out, explaining the inexplicable.
Milo nodded, the way you might nod to any naked lunatic. And Adam continued, annoyed – because who liked being humoured? “There was a spider in there,” he said. “I only noticed it once I was already in there, up in the corner out of the way of the showerhead.”
It didn’t get the big reaction he’d been aiming for. Markov just looked at him a moment longer, like there had to be more explanation coming that that. For nudity, and being still bedewed with shower-raindrops, and suchlike.
“It was a really big one,” Adam added. He was getting annoyed, now.
Will doesn’t mind when his company HR officer, Elizabeth, ropes him into charity events. Well, to be quite accurate, he minds, but he knows better than to protest. But a bachelor auction? In a toga? With his PA Jon at the event? (The PA he has a little crush on. A very little one. Shut up.)
Oh well, it’s not as if Jon’s going to put in a bid for a date with Will. Is he? Is he?
Adam couldn’t speak, himself. He’d have choked on a word. It was impossible to come up with even a fumbled, ‘um, hi’. What was he going to do, affect nonchalance, act like he just walked around the building in the buff all the time?
After the awkwardest brief pause in the world, though, Markov saved him. He stood a little straighter – making the most of his diminutive height. And he looked Adam right in the eye – because anywhere else would have been awkward. “’Evening, there, neighbour,” was how he opened the conversation. He folded his arms, and there might have been a twitch of amusement round the pretty curl of his lips. “Interesting weather we’ve been having, right? Warm,” he emphasized.
His gaze traveled and lingered over Adam’s shoulder, arm, hip – suggesting, wordlessly, that a spot of naturism was a perfectly reasonable response to the heat. Or that maybe Adam thought so, at least.
Yeah! Let’s! Admittedly, these chicks may be talking about the adorable joey. What a cutie! But I like to think they’re obediently conforming to the dominant paradigm and submitting to externally imposed peer-group demands, just the same.
Anyway, I’ve got into a new writer! Isn’t it always so terrific to discover somebody new-to-you, and plunge into their work, to experience a whole new way of looking at the world?
Yeah. It’s Alison Bechdel. YOU MAY HAVE HEARD OF HER. I’m always a little late to the party, every time.
Really, this is the point where I ought to play at being Cooler out of Flaked. “Dennis! Your little pop-up off-licence is called Dennis Wines! Like you! Isn’t that amazing!”
Eh lol. Shoulda done that. “Hey, Ms Bechdel! There’s this thing called the Bechdel test – and I understand you’ve actually discussed it quite often! And you’re called Bechdel! Synchronicity, wow!”
Well, I haven’t read much of her work so far – really only her section in Best American Comics 2008, and nothing else in it either. But that’s the best time with a new artist: when they have a massive (throbbing?) body of work, and you’ve barely dipped your toes in the water.
Now, just to make sure: BOYS! KISSING! BOYS! KISSING!
Never wanted to pass a test that wouldn’t have me, anyway.
Image – State Library of New South Wales, no known copyright restrictions.
Cole is in love, but it doesn’t do him a lot of good. That’s because he’s in love with the ghost who’s haunting him, the ghost of his fire-fighter neighbour Sam, who died six months ago. If only either of them had admitted back then that they were in love with each other, how much simpler things would have been…
They’d nodded at each other in the mornings and evenings and in the utility room in the basement, the rare occasions Adam had spotted the smooth handsome newcomer, so far. He’d been biding his time. Waiting for the perfect moment.
And here it was, their meet-cute. It wasn’t remotely how Adam had imagined it, though. Not sans his slickest new duds, sans towel, sans a shred or scrap of clothing to cover him. Damp and flushed and sweaty, in fact, gasping for breath with the slam of the door still echoing through the hallway. And with his hand over his masculine parts, no sang-froid whatsoever. (Like a kid whose swimming trunks had come off when he surged up out of the pool, and gave the hotel swimmers and sunbathers a laugh. He half-expected a catcall, a whistle, a round of mocking applause.)
You must be logged in to post a comment.