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SASO Referees ([personal profile] referees) wrote in [community profile] sportsanime2016-07-21 08:53 pm
Entry tags:

Bonus Round 5: Myth & Lore

Bonus Round 5: Myth & Lore

Summer's a time for swapping stories around the campfire. With that in mind, this round draws inspiration from the stories humanity have told each other over the centuries.

This round is CLOSED as of 7PM on August 4 EDT. Late fills may be posted, but they will not receive points.

  • This round does not have prompts. Instead, we ask you to draw inspiration from the wide pool of mythology, fantasy, folklore, and fable. An urban fantasy or supernatural AU? A re-imagining of your favorite folk tale? Characters swapping ghost stories or playing D&D? As long as your fill in some way incorporates the fantastical and/or supernatural, it's welcome here.
  • Your fill still has to be about a ship from one of our nominated fandoms. What ships you create work for is up to you, though.
  • To submit your fill, simply leave it as a comment as a reply to this post.
  • Remember to follow the general bonus round rules, outlined here.

Bonus round shenanigans all happen in the comments below. Brand-new works only, please.

Required Work Minimums:
  • 400 words (prose)
  • 400px by 400px (art)
  • 14 lines (poetry)
There is no max work cap.

Remember, this is a NO-PROMPT round. Format your fill comment in one of the following ways:

  • Replace [YOUR SHIP] with the name of the team you belong to
  • Replace RATING with the rating of your fill (G - E)
  • Place applicable major content tags and word count before your fill (when applicable)
  • If no major content tags are applicable, make sure to state this-- even if including other additional tags
  • NSFW FILLS: Please cross-link these fills and use clear tags in your comment. Written/text fills should be hosted at AO3 ONLY as a new, unchaptered work. Art/visual fills can be hosted anywhere. You may include a small safe-for-work preview of the fill in your comment.
  • To place an image in your comment, use this code: <img src="LINK TO YOUR IMAGE" alt="DESCRIPTION OF YOUR IMAGE"/>
  • Visual example
  • Replace RATING with the rating of your fill, G - E, as explained in the rules
  • Place applicable major content tags and word count before the fill, where applicable
  • If no major content tags are applicable, make sure to state this-- even if including other additional tags
  • NSFW FILLS: Please cross-link these fills and use clear tags in your comment. Written/text fills should be hosted at AO3 ONLY as a new, unchaptered work. Art/visual fills can be hosted anywhere. You may include a small safe-for-work preview of your work in your comment.
  • To place an image in your comment, use this code: <img src="LINK TO YOUR IMAGE" />
  • Visual example

Posts not using this format will be understood to be unofficial discussion posts, regardless of what they contain. They, like all comments in this community, are subject to the code of conduct.

These numbers apply to your team as a whole, not each individual teammate. Make as many fills as you want!

For fills:

First 3 fills by any member of your team: 20 points each
Fills 4-10: 10 points each
Fills 11-20: 5 points each
Fills 21+: 2 points each

All scored content must be created new for this round.

If you're hunting through the prompts looking for what to fill, a good trick is to view top-level comments only.

Have a question? Check The FAQ first. If you still need help, feel free to contact the mods. Happy fanworking!
catlarks: (SASO: heart)


[personal profile] catlarks 2016-08-04 12:07 pm (UTC)(link)
tags: supernatural elements, (talk of freezing to) death; monster AU, Umi is a human, Eli is an ice spirit
Ship: Ayase Eli/Sonoda Umi (love live)
Word Count: 1,136

"Please," Umi says, as she drops to her knees on the stone path outside the shrine. Her sleeves flutter as she folds her arms before her, as she bends over them and bows her head in a gesture even spirits must know as a motion of respect. "Please, if you do not let me stay at the temple, I will freeze."

There's only silence from above her, thoughtful and waiting. Umi does not dare lift her head, will not chance the disrespect of peeking up at the maiden whose judgment she's hinging her life on. Pillars outside cut the wind and decrease the chill of one of the harshest winters Umi has ever seen, but the stones beneath her folded legs are no less frosted with ice, and outside the temple's protection, snow heaps up high across the hills.

The blizzard came upon Umi faster than she could have expected; her request is out of sincere desperation.

"You will freeze if you stay here," the maiden finally says. "I have no need for a stove, or for firewood."

"Please," Umi repeats, at last venturing to raise her head from its bow. "Anything is better than the hills at night. On the mountain I will be buried under the snow, and I cannot hope to see even the next dawn with my blood still flowing alive in my veins. Please, I ask this only out of necessity."

There's another pause, as the woman considers her plight. Umi spends that minute in contemplation of her own, watching the maiden's lovely, angular face, the sharp slope of her nose, the lines of her cheekbones, the sweep of her brows above cool, ice-blue eyes. She's perfect as a statue, more beautiful than any living girl Umi can remember setting eyes on.

But this is not the first time she's seen the ice mistress of the mountain, nor is it the first time she's wandered into the mountain shrine unannounced. The last time she was caught out in a blizzard she was only eight years old, cold and alone and too confused to watch where she was walking. She'd collapsed on the steps to the temple; she'd woken up inside, shivering and half-frozen, but alive, wrapped in a warm, thick blanket she'd never seen before in her life.

(Umi had taken the blanket with her, when she ventured back down the mountain in that long-past moment from her youth. She was too cold at the time to risk leaving it, despite knowing even at that age that to take something belonging to another was tragically unwise. Umi sleeps in the shrine blanket to this day.)

"Fine," the woman says. "Come inside."

Even with permission, Umi rises slowly. Her legs are stiff from their short time spent pressed against the stone, joints protesting any movement at all in such intense cold. The mistress of the mountain retreats, leaving Umi to follow in her wake through the entrance to the shrine. The building beyond is a single room, small and dark and lit only by a single candle placed at the railing where prayers are tied at holidays.

Umi doesn't know what to do with herself. There's nowhere to sit and no obvious place to stand; there is no fireplace just as the ice spirit warned, and the inside of the temple is barely warmer than the outdoors, though the wind that cuts through Umi's clothing has been silenced at last.

"I'm sorry," Umi says. "But... That is..."

She bites her tongue, uncertain how to clarify the things that she remembers, her vision of a beautiful woman tucking her into the softest blanket she's ever touched and sitting with her until she fell asleep. She's dreamed of the maiden of the mountain since she was eight years old, with such regularity that somewhere in her heart, she knew she had to see the woman again.

"I remember," the woman says, words breathed out as softly as the wind between bare branches. "The first time you asked for my protection. You were much smaller, then."

Umi sags at that, strings cut, the tension wound through her limbs unspooling all at once and leaving her weak and unsteady on her feet. She doesn't know what she would have done, discovering it was always just a dream. She feared, just a little bit, that this latest encounter was a delusion, same as the last.

"I won't keep you very warm," the maiden says. "If I wrap you in my arms the way you remember."

Umi flushes, fighting not to look away, to turn, to hide from the slow, secret smile that spreads across the shrine maiden's lips. It puts a warmth in her eyes that wasn't there before, a soft glow like sunlight off melting snow, glimmering faintly at first, but capable of blinding.

The maiden rolls her eyes, and in that moment she appears to be nothing more than a girl, making shelter in an abandoned shrine much as Umi has been forced to do. She spreads her arms, and gives a single, regal jerk of her head. The illusion of accessibility holds just long enough for Umi to enter the circle of the ice spirit's arms.

She's as cool as she promised, chilled to a temperature too low for any human to survive. But she's warmer than Umi expected — warmer than the winter air, warmer than freezing temperatures that would spell Umi's death through the night. She sniffles, and is abruptly aware that she's sobbing, shoulders shaking as her lungs suck in great nervous gasps of air.

"Oh, child," the ice maiden says, pulling Umi closer into her gentle embrace. "There's really nothing to cry over."

"I know," Umi whispers, against the fabric of the other girl's kimono. "I know, but I can't stop."

Slowly, the maiden lowers them both to the floor, rubs Umi's back until the shakes she's being plagued by smooth themselves out. She's exhausted, when she finishes crying. But the mistress of the mountain is still holding her protectively, and Umi dares to dream of falling asleep against the soft swell of her breast.

"Sleep," she's told. "Sleep, and in the morning all will be well."

"Will you still be there?" Umi asks. "Or will you disappear, melting away like last time?"

The smile she's shown then softens, pretty lips turned up at their corners. "I'll be here when you awake. And, perhaps, for longer still after."

There's something in the promise Umi doesn't know how to place, a hope that sets to fluttering in her chest like a nervous bird eager to be freed from its gilded cage. But she's exhausted; with soft hands stroking her hair and a cool arm curled around her back, she drifts into a sleep unplagued by dreams, deep as the winter night.