Holy monkey jebus, I FINISHED IT.You know, I actually laughed when adesso said we should try not to let our claims go for longer than, what was it, six months without posting a fic for it? I laughed and said, "Pfft! Please, it's not gonna take me that long to write something!"Yeah. Look at me, finally posting -- four months later. Hope it was worth the wait. ;)Title: On His Own Terms: Twenty Facts about Sohma ShigureAuthor: NiamhRating: Uh, PG-13?Spoilers: Hmm. Just the Akito Spoiler just about everyone knows about already. Oh, and a mild Hatori-centric spoiler for events surrounding and following chapter 57. Small potatoes, really.Notes: Obviously this is speculation, though I try to stay as canonical as humanly possible. If I've uncovered a spoiler, other than the one listed, of course, it's totally accidental.On His Own Terms: Twenty Facts about Sohma Shigure:
1. He has always resented being the Dog and all the implications therein. He refuses to be defined by a spirit inside of him, and he fights against those traits that are supposed to be unique to the Dog -- loyalty and trustworthiness among them -- even if he feels that those traits are intrinsic to him. He will define himself; he will not be defined by anything or anyone.
2. Similarly, he will not be told by anyone who to love. Like everything else, he interprets the bond between the Juunishi and Kami-sama on his own terms. The bond exists, yes, but rather than being made a slave to it -- like Kureno -- Shigure desires to use this bond to further his own ends.
3. Shigure understands love -- he's seen how it can be a nurturing force, melting metaphoric ice and snow, soothing away thunderous storm clouds, and calming the loudest, fiercest winds. He also knows that love has a dark side, existing as if on the other side of a mirror. Love can crush. Love can smother. Love can destroy. It is a perfect weapon, and while there are some who handle such a weapon clumsily with spilt blood and screamed demands, he considers himself far more proficient with that particular blade.
4. One of the reasons Shigure finds Kureno so vexatious is because there seems to be nothing he wants. There are no strings for Shigure to pull, and if there are, they're too well-hidden for the Dog to sniff out. The Rooster's devotion and evident affection for Kami-sama threatens to unravel all of Shigure's hard work, and it's damned frustrating.
5. No matter what he does or says, there is a memory that sticks firmly in Shigure's mind, and it will never be pried loose. That memory is of a dream, one in which he felt -- truly felt -- what it was like to hold someone he loved. It wasn't an enforced love, or one that existed because of an invisible, intangible bond, but a love that simply existed. He keeps that memory in all its clarity secreted away deep inside of him, ignoring it until it is almost forgotten. During moments of doubt -- and the Dog does have them, though such moments are few and far between -- Shigure allows himself to indulge in that memory.
6. There is one thing Shigure thinks about more than he thinks about Akito, and that is the Curse and all of his plans surrounding it. He regards his plans like Michelangelo regarded the Sistine Chapel ceiling: with ambition, determination, and bitter resentment.
7. Shigure has always created worlds and people within them. Since he was a small boy, he's woven tales of imaginary lands. Like a god, he holds dominion over those worlds, and they become a repository for moments when his helplessness threatens to overcome him.
8. His stories are never as simple as good triumphing over evil. He prefers rewarding cunning and wily heroes who take any measure necessary to reach a final objective. The end must justify the means, no matter what the means.
9. Shigure has never responded well to authority figures. Mit-chan, for example. She is his editor; she is, essentially, in a position of authority over him. He considered manipulation via seduction, but ultimately decided it would be far too easy. Instead, he makes her an object of fun; she is his toy, and he plays with her, worrying her in his jaws like a bone.
10. Sometimes Shigure doesn't sleep very well. While during his waking hours he opts not to think too closely on the lives of those around him, at night the very things he tries to suppress all day return to him. This is why he works such odd hours; he is not a slave to his creative spirit -- he is a slave to his subconscious.
11. While Shigure certainly liked Kana-chan, he had been able to see from the start that the Curse would break her. She was too gentle, too kind, too soft. He'd tried to warn Ha-san, but the traits that would eventually be Kana's ruin were the very things the Dragon had loved most about her. Unfortunately, Ha-san suffered the greatest loss, and sometimes, in his more reflective moments, Shigure blames himself for never actively trying to break them up. He considers that one of his greatest moments of weakness.
12. Occasionally he wonders if Tohru-kun will crumble like Kana-chan did. They are so similar, after all, and Tohru-kun is taking on so much more than Kana-chan ever had. But there is... an indefinable something in Tohru-kun that separates her from Kana-chan. In fact, it separates her from most of the human race, which is why Shigure continues to back that particular horse.
13. Shigure tries not to congratulate himself too much on his successes -- it's a dangerous habit to fall into. However, he does allow himself to savor some of his larger victories. He knows Ha-san better than almost anyone, and he knows all too well the Dragon's icy demeanor is nothing but a defense mechanism. He also knows that if Hatori had any idea of how long Shigure had been plotting to bring him together with Mayu-chan, the Dog would be lucky to escape unscathed.
14. There is a fine line between what everyone expects Shigure to do, and what Shigure will actually do. He's made an art of keeping everyone around him on their toes, but sometimes... sometimes he gets tired. And in those moments, he considers doing what everyone expects, simply because it's easier. But to do so would be admitting weakness in himself, and he refuses to do that.
15. Many people have accused Shigure of caring for nothing and no one. This isn't true; he does care, but in his own way. Shigure cannot afford to allow himself emotional involvement: it complicates things overmuch. When you become emotionally invested in a person, you feel things too much and too keenly, and when that happens, it impairs your judgment. He detaches himself from emotions because he has a task to complete, and cannot allow himself to get tangled worrying about whether feelings and sensibilities will be bruised in the process. Some things are more important than hurt feelings.
16. Among others, both Mayu-chan and Rin have accused him of treating people like objects -- books, or pieces of scrap paper, even (that said, he has to give them credit for not falling back on the tired old "chess" cliché). Shigure sometimes wishes he could work up enough spleen to get offended at these comments. The truth is, while he doesn't view the people around him as objects, he does tend to view many of them as characters moving through a larger, more complex storyline. People are easily deconstructed, like the characters he creates, and by viewing them as such, Shigure is able to pinpoint their motives, desires, and flaws, manipulating the situation to his advantage, and making them think that their actions are a result of their own decisions and nothing else. Shakespeare said "All the world's a stage," but Shigure disagrees -- his world, at least, is a novel.
17. It was very important for Shigure to make Akito think that his expulsion from the Honke was her idea. For as long as he lets her think it was a punishment -- and not what he'd been angling for all along -- she will not expect him to come back to the compound's suffocating embrace. Akito can never know she did him such a huge favor.
18. It would have been just as easy for Shigure to live in a smaller house; as far as practicality goes, it is too large for just one person. But he'd insisted on one just that size -- for all of his books, naturally. It's not his fault if family members seek shelter under his roof. He certainly never asked for it. He just wanted room for his books.
19. While Shigure thinks a great deal about the Curse, and what it will take to lift it, he prefers not to think too much about what lies beyond the Curse, in a world where it's lifted. It's all very well and good to imagine a "normal" life, but Shigure will be the first one to point out that things are seldom ever the way we imagine them. It will take adjustment, but Sohma Shigure is nothing if not adaptable.
20. The irony of a Dog, a Cat, and a Rat living under one roof does not escape Shigure, and part of the reason he ever attempted such a thing is to prove it could be done with hardly any bloodshed at all.
.......hi I love you.It always makes me giddy to see people who do Shigure complete justice. 16 in particular is just so much ♥.
*Squeeble!* Thank you! (Number 16 is my personal favorite, too, though possibly tied with number 6.)I do have to say, this was really hard to write. He's such a slippery character, and I really wanted to do him justice, so thank you. I'm really glad you enjoyed it. :D
Incredible! 3, 13, 16, and 20 in particular! You've got him down!!!
*runs around in happy circles* Thank you! (He is my all-time favorite Furuba character, because he's so complex, but that also makes him really difficult to capture.)
This is *amazing* Oh, I love it! I had been so looking forward to this and you have done such an awesome job. Thank you so very much! *memories*(I think 16 is also my favorite :-) )
I had been so looking forward to this...You have? ...Wow, I suddenly feel really guilty, because it sat for so long on my HD, stalled at 13 items. Today I made myself sit down and finish the blasted thing, because it was looming over me like a ghost. A big, unfinished ghost that was poking me with a stick and saying, "Niamh, you slacker, finish me!"I'm flattered that you liked it, though! Thank you! <3
Oh, please, don't feel bad! I am so excited you wrote it and I would have waited as much as I had to for it :-) (Actually, I have two 20_fruits to write, so I really should not be saying anything...) You did a great job with Shigure here and I am really impressed, not only at how much you have thought about him and what goes on in his mind, but at the way you used language to showcase that. I really, really liked it. Have you written more, even other fandoms?I'm sorry if I made you feel bad--please don't! You did an awesome job and I'm very grateful you wrote it. It was my birthday yesterday and it was the best thing to end my day :-) Thanks again!!
(Actually, I have two 20_fruits to write, so I really should not be saying anything...)Heh. Yeah, I have Mayuko and Hatori on deck, but I did Shigure first because (a) he's my favorite and (b) he's so darned slippery!did a great job with Shigure here and I am really impressed, not only at how much you have thought about him and what goes on in his mind, but at the way you used language to showcase that. I really, really liked it. *blush* Thank you, thank you, thank you. That really makes it worth all the muttering and cursing I did. (Seriously, I was like, "Rassinfrassin stupid Shigure, stupid me for CHOOSING Shigure, grar!") So I'm very happy you enjoyed it. And happy belated birthday! I'm glad it was able to brighten your day. :)And, yeah, I have written more, though not much more (I'm kind of a slow updater). I've posted other Furuba stuff on FFN and MMO (MMO holds a rather risque Mayu/Hatori lemon, which obviously I can't post on FFN). Um... there're a couple of Jossverse stories, and one overly-long Inuyasha fic that... isn't everyone's cup of tea, so I don't know if I'd point you there. But I do have a small handful of shorter Furuba one-shots, a couple of drabbles, and one longer Furuba fic (Shigure-centric, heh) I'm writing with a friend.And, I hope you don't mind, but I was poking around your journal -- do you mind if I friend you?
Heh. Yeah, I have Mayuko and Hatori on deckThat's *awesome*! I have Shigure/Mayuko (the platonic relationship)...heheh But I have Mayu and Hatori for 30_kisses and I'm super scared about writing them. There is so little to go by and I'm scared of either slipping out of canon, or writing lots of fluff. Good luck with Hatori/Mayuko. I'm sure it will be interesting and just as fantastic as your Shigure piece.Thanks for pointing me in the direction of your stories :-) I'll be sure to check them out. I must admit I am very curious about your Inuyasha story now ;-) Thank you so much! And, I hope you don't mind, but I was poking around your journal -- do you mind if I friend you?You won't believe this, but I was looking at your journal and went, "Oh, I should've asked if I could friend!" Go right ahead! It's very nice to meet you :-) I noticed you are an English major. That's fantastic. I didn't grow up speaking English, but now that I live here and have to communicate in English on a daily basis, I am trying--though slowly--to make my way through the English classics. I like many of the things/books/authors/movies you mentioned in your bio: LotR's, Braveheart, Jane Austen, Byron (though I'm no expert!), Sarah McLachlan. My brother loves Dracula, and he's been telling me to go read it. I think I probably should :-)So nice to meet you! Hope you have a good day.
One just have to love Shigure-centric ficlets. He has got to be one of the most complicated characters in Fruits Basket and I doubt that we have seen even half of his plans. I love him, but he is one scary character. *shivers*I think that you captured that perfectly. Well done!
It's YOU!!!!! The author of A Bump in the Road!!!! Yes? I hope you're who I think you are... heh, this would be a little embarrassing if you aren't. lol ^_^ By the way, update that one soon!!! I love that one.I really do love what you did with Shigure. You definitely managed to capture the nuances of Shigure's character. He's such a difficult character to pin down; I haven't even wanted to try yet. ^_^ Great job on these.
It's YOU!!!!!Uh oh, what'd I do now?The author of A Bump in the Road!!!!*sheepish* Yeah, one of them. BitR is Ev's fault, too. I can't take all the blame. :)By the way, update that one soon!!! I love that one.Awww, thank you! The next chapter's prob'ly about half-finished. There'll be an update soon. I'm glad you like it.I really do love what you did with Shigure. You definitely managed to capture the nuances of Shigure's character. Again, thank you. He's tough because he can be so playful and lighthearted, but there's more to him than that. BUT, you can't ignore the playful side, either. I'm flattered that you like it. ^__^
(why do I have no Shigure icons? Well, have another eyeglasses character.)Ah, #16, so meta. And I love #18. "What? No, I'm totally not creating a haven for any Juunishi who might want to flee the main estate. It's a coincidence I have all those extra bedrooms. Really, what are you accusing me of?"Gotta love the twisted tricksy Dog. (And if he's put all this time and energy towards having that petulant spoiled brat all to himself, I will be so very disappointed in him.)
....You have no Shigure icons?That's just wrong. Wrong, I say! (Then again, I have enough for both of us...)*snerk* I'm not surprised you picked up on #18, either. I was having a hard time thinking of "facts" for him, and started flipping through the first manga volume and it struck me how absurd it is for a single man to have alllllll those extra rooms. Someone needs to make a little sign: "'Gure-san's Home for Wayward Juunishi."And if he's put all this time and energy towards having that petulant spoiled brat all to himself, I will be so very disappointed in him.Yeah, I know. I mean, I'll acknowledge that they've got A relationship. I just think it's far more twisted and effed-up than THAT. I just... heh. To paraphrase Wolverine from X3: "Tell me you're not doing this for some girl." I want there to be MORE behind his motivations. Something tricksy and delightfully manipulative and ... Shigure-ish.
I KNOW. WTF. I need to at least icon my favorite picture of him.And they do have a relationship, and I think he even feels sorry and cares for her in some way; he's just not going to let it get in the way of breaking the curse. Kind of the way Professor X being a caring father figure didn't keep Dark Zombie Queen Phoenix from disintegrating him.
You do realize that it was your posting of the Kyou/Tohru list that got me off my lazy behind to finish this monster, right?
*applauds*THIS is why I love Shigure so much. You've got him nailed. Lovely piece.
*bows* Thank you very much. I'm really glad (and omfg relieved) that people seem to like it! You have no idea how afraid I was that people would be all, "OMG YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW SHIGURE!!!11!" at me. ;)
Shigure is about the hardest character in the world to pin down, and you've got him almost completely - I love #18, especially, and you've got how and why he manipulates so well, his resentment of authority figures and expectations (I do think he had a bad relationship with his parents) so damn well. And he's more than just the Dog here; a lot more.
Firstly, room for your books my ass, Shigure.Secondly, this is great, I love Shigure because he's so twisty and devious, as well as a goofball. Thirteen just gives me such love, mostly because of the idea of how very pissed poor Hatori would be, and how very bruised Shigure would be when Hatori and Mayu were done with him.
Firstly, room for your books my ass, Shigure.LMAO -- yeah, that's pretty much my thinking too. ;)Secondly, this is great, I love Shigure because he's so twisty and devious, as well as a goofball.Thank you, so much. Those three words -- verbatim, mind you -- are the ones I use habitually to describe him.Thirteen just gives me such love, mostly because of the idea of how very pissed poor Hatori would be, and how very bruised Shigure would be when Hatori and Mayu were done with him.Oh, you know it. THAT is a fic that needs to be written.
My God. That was brilliant! So wonderfully in character, so beautifully written. Just fantastic. I really can't say anything else! Especially #20 amd 18. That was a nice touch. ^_^ In fact #18 is just, pure love!
Thank you so much! (Hah, I'd almost forgotten I'd even WRITTEN this!)