WHAT IS SWEET BRIAR???? IM CURIOUS also pocket lesbians
okay so i’ve talked about pocket lesbians here already !
[this is my original work, do not use / repurpose / plagiarise in any form]
sweet briar the working title for a webcomic i’ve had banging around in my head since i was thirteen in various different mediums. it’s essentially a mlm romance except their relationship is extremely nuanced by the fact that both of them are extremely aspec and one of them is arospec 🤸
this story has had multiple names and forms [the original being in like 2016 when i was still in my c*shet phase] but essentially its form progression looks like this: short story [full romance, meet-cute, mlw]—> novel [still romance, neighbours to lovers (is that even a trope), mlm] —> webcomic [contemporary, strangers to lovers, mlm]. details:
mcs are dev [he/they] and adrien [he/him]. the story’s sort of an exploration of queer romance but through an aroace lens? i’m aromantic and have never been very comfortable with writing “proper” romances, so this story is like a compromise which i love
by virtue of the storytelling medium, this would involve three “seasons”: the first one focusses on adrien starting afresh in a place where he isn't known only as “the trans kid” and deals with self-identity; the second one on dev’s extremely strained relationship with their [homophobic] family and with realising that you don't have to forgive the shitty people in your life. the third season would be idk lmao but it would focus mostly on their relationship!
they're both asian <3 adrien’s chinese and dev’s desi, and there is ofc going to be a lot of me gushing about being asian and how sexy it is through the characters because i like doing so.
the entire story is secretly a love letter to singapore, which is where their uni is [it’s a college story again! which i want to make when i’m in uni too] and where the majority of the story is set, and is also probably my favourite place in the world and where i wanted to go to for uni but can’t because reasons but we don’t talk about that
since it’ll be a webcomic i am very excited to see how my “drafting” process would have to adapt and also might have to learn to screen write just for this and that might be really fun 👁️
ask me about my wips!
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do you ever just sit and think about this
mizuki telling iruka that naruto is going to take revenge on the village for lying about the fox, and iruka replying “no...naruto isn’t like that”
orochimaru telling kakashi that sasuke is an avenger whose heart desires only one thing, and kakashi replying “you think you can take advantage of that? not sasuke.”
iruka thinking “naruto...he’s just like i was back then”
gai thinking “he reminds me of you, kakashi...when you were young”
mizuki manipulating naruto for his own benefit (“he used you to get the scroll for himself, for his own power!”) and using a big reveal (“they’ve been lying to you your whole life, naruto”) to damage naruto’s trust in the person who’s actually trying to help him
madara doing the exact same thing with sasuke
kakashi telling iruka “actually, you are the only one who can reach naruto’s heart/i believe if you can just hang in there a little longer, you will find the way”
kakashi later being put in a position where he’s the only adult who has a chance of getting through to sasuke...the only adult who even bothers to try
kakashi telling iruka that reaching naruto is “your personal ordeal,” the task he’s meant to complete, the task that he isn’t allowed to quit, even when he goes to the hokage to try and resign
sakumo telling kakashi “it seems you have unfinished business waiting for you back home/there must be something you’re still meant to do” as kakashi gets yanked out of the afterlife, because kakashi is living out his own personal ordeal now and he isn’t allowed to quit either
i know you have your reasons, but as your teacher i can’t just walk away
i know that’s how you feel, naruto (i *do* know how you feel)
i’m in charge of this child’s safety (i’ll protect you with my life)
he’s going home with me.
i think about this a Lot. in particular, i think about the ways in which the ability to make (or not make, as the case may be) a connection to a single trusted adult has such a dramatic effect on the trajectories that naruto and sasuke’s lives take later.
naruto finds “his” grown-up - someone who’s lived the same life he has and who can understand him in a way that others can’t - and that in turn leads him to more connections, more adults to look after him, an entire surrogate family to believe in him/support him/make him feel like he belongs. sasuke, for his part, also finds “his” grown-up - but in his case, the situation is much more complicated, and he’s never able to reap the attendant benefits. events conspire to send him running before he can become truly connected to a loving community, and so he never has a chance to build the larger support system that naruto does. he never finds a jiraiya or a tsunade or a yamato or a bunch of animal sages to give him guidance or a class of peers to fight for him or a village to admire him and protect him. he has no support network. every adult he’s met since leaving the Leaf has been someone who’s trying to exploit him, and the instant he realizes that he might be starting to feel the faintest connection to taka, he ditches them. to this day, the only friends he’s ever made (and i use that term loosely, because even when sasuke was still in the Leaf his relationships weren’t a first priority for him) are sakura and naruto. and the ONLY adult he’s ever had a true connection with, post-massacre, is kakashi.
sasuke’s going to need all three of these people if he’s going to survive, but i’m focusing on kakashi in this particular piece, because if ever there were a kid who desperately needed a trusted adult to help them navigate their life, sasuke is it. sasuke has been left to his own devices for years and years (everybody remember that time when a seven year old who witnessed the mass murder of his entire extended family was allowed to wake up ALONE in a hospital room and walk out of the building and revisit the crime scene without anyone noticing he was gone? i do!). he has never had an adult to take care of him or help him process the things that happened to him in a semi-healthy way, and nowadays he’s a disaster driving itself off a cliff. he has zero coping skills that aren’t completely self-destructive. he won’t accept advice or assistance from anybody who doesn’t understand what he’s going through (and understandably so - why should he listen to anybody who isn’t feeling what he’s feeling, who hasn’t lost the way he’s lost? what can they possibly have to offer him?). he needs somebody who can come to him from a place of credibility, someone who can say “i *do* know how you feel” and not be talking out their ass. that’s what naruto gets from iruka when they finally make their connection - a relationship with an adult who accepts him and believes in him and (most importantly of all) understands him. that’s naruto’s first step on the way to him reaching the place he inhabits now, where the lonely and shunned orphan he used to be is beloved by everyone, blessed with multiple parental figures, and supported by innumerable friends both at home and abroad. meeting an adult who could say “we’re the same” and have it genuinely be true instead of just empty talk is what allows naruto to finally feel like he isn’t alone. it’s what enables him to eventually become part of a community.
naruto has these opportunities because he finds His Person - a mentor and caretaker who can say with complete honesty “we’re the same.” sasuke found someone like that, too, and in truth he still has that person chasing after him, but circumstances being what they are, he hasn’t been able to benefit from that relationship the same way naruto has. he was removed from kakashi’s supervision at the exact moment when he needed it most (and at the exact moment where they had just broken new ground in their relationship), and because of that, he’s remained incredibly isolated. naruto has steadily accumulated friends and comrades (and five different people to be his dad), but sasuke has connected with no one. he’s completely alone. he is - as neji aptly put it - in the darkness right now, and he’s in there all by himself, without friends to support him, and without the only adult who can point him in the right direction.
honestly, the only thing that makes me feel better about this is knowing that sasuke still has these people waiting for him whenever he comes home. it’s high time he was able to have his own iruka and benefit from the same network of loving connections that naruto was able to build.
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