So. Twist and Shout.
Was an unforgettable story.
Okay, please bear with me for a second. I don’t even know if that’s the word I want to use, but that’s the closest I can get to the reality of what I read; it was viscerally, beautifully human and I’m not sure how to describe what the experience of reading it was like without taking a deep breath and shaking my head to start.
As I was reading it, I sobbed so hard I almost vomited. Some of you who haven’t read this fic yet may roll your eyes; it sounds over-dramatic, I understand. Everyone is claiming to have cried, right?
Well it’s not an exaggeration. This is a fic that cuts so incredibly deep. Whatever you may be imagining is not even CLOSE to how it actually feels like while you’re reading and having all these pieces of yourself ripped out.
There’s a lot to be said about Dean and Castiel as it is, but T&S took the examination of their relationship a step further. I would attribute it to the fact that this isn’t just about Dean and Castiel together in another universe. It’s about two men loving each other wholly. That’s it. That’s the pure and simple truth. Not a fake love, not a cheap and inarticulate love, but something deep and real and abiding and transformative and spiritual. It’s disguised in a fanfic, but I wish the whole world could read this.
You wanna know why so many fucking people cried reading this fic? It was brutally honest about itself, that’s why. It didn’t paint some arbitrary beginning-middle-end sequence and add the nuances of the time period on with a haphazard slap. It went its own pace, changed direction, slowed down, sped up, and didn’t apologize for all the things it wanted to say through Cas and Dean’s lives. I am absolutely beside myself with how well the historical facts of the era were encompassed and handled in the story. These are two gay men in the midst of a war, and illness, and situations that just asked too much of the both of them. And still they loved. This is story-telling at its most human.
I won’t analyze the nooks and crannies of the prose because I want to keep what the story meant to me all to myself. I think anyone who’ve read the fic can agree: it’s a really personal experience. I had to shut myself in my room with a box of tissues and pillows because my throat was making all sorts of involuntary noises as I allowed myself to be fully invested in the story. It was an intimate experience, just me and the fic, and I don’t want to try to break it apart like it’s some kind of convoluted literature. But I do feel the need to unpack why this story was so touching, and what it made me realize about love.
Looking back on it now, yeah it was the brutal honesty of the writing that had me in tears, but it was the organic contradictions, too. Things can be beautiful, even if they damage you. It’s okay to be broken, even if you feel like you’ve lost yourself. You can heal. You deserve to heal. Real love, even when it’s broken and beaten and fucked up, is still strong enough to make people come home to themselves. When everything else is changing, real love doesn’t leave. And if it made you whole—even for just a moment—then it was a part of you that you can always return to.
So here’s my point with all this word vomit: if you’re at all curious about reading it but you’re on the fence? Read the damn fic. I’m so serious about this. I swear to you, T&S is worth reading and it’s probably going to change your life a little bit, so don’t be scared to let this story fuck you up. It’s worth it.
(God this entire thing turned into way more philosophizing that I intended, but I’m not sorry. T&S was one of the most amazing stories I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading.)
Link to the fic: http://discover.livejournal.com/8648.html
I read this some days ago and I’m still crying…