The OTP Vote
"Order, order." Alex banged the gavel against the polished surface of the conference room table, eliciting startled looks from those around her. "I hereby bring this meeting of -"
"I'm chairing this meeting," Gabrielle broke in.
"- femslash characters to order."
"I always chair the meetings." Gabrielle huffed. "Unless Xena's here," she added.
Olivia ignored them both. "Can we just get on with this? I'm scheduled to cry prettily at a crime scene in twenty-five minutes."
Helen and Nikki exchanged looks; if a screw broke into tears on G-Wing she'd find herself on the end of Fenner's boot or smuggling in jellies for Shell or one of the other lowlifes.
"What's on today's agenda?" Willow asked, reaching into her backpack and pulling out a three-ring binder and assorted pens.
"OTPs," Gabrielle and Alex said in unison.
"What about them?" Sara Sidle looked uncomfortable. She'd never attended one of these meetings before, and she wasn't sure she fit in with the group. She leant to the side, her voice lowered, as she asked Sofia, "What's an OTP?"
"One True Pairing," Sofia whispered back.
"That's right." Alex jumped in, having overheard their conversation. "One True Pairing. The emphasis on the one!"
Catherine crossed her arms in smug satisfaction. "I agree. We need to stop all these minor pairings trying to take over."
Catherine and Sofia exchanged snarls, as Sara looked on in bewilderment.
"Is there really any need for that?" Helen asked.
"It's all right for you," Alex broke in. "You're canon. You don't have to worry about Casey-come-latelies stealing your thunder."
Olivia rolled her eyes.
"Who come when?" Nikki and Helen shared another confused look. "Is that a Yank thing?" Nikki asked, her knowledge of American slang a few years out of date.
"Casey 'blonde-I-don't-think-so' Novak," Alex spat.
Gabrielle stole the gavel from Alex's grasp when it looked like the lawyer was about to start banging the table in a fit of pique; they'd only rented the room and she didn't have enough dinars to replace the mahogany effect table.
"She's rather sweet," Olivia defended.
Sara and Sofia rushed to block the irate blonde's attack on her once-brunette lover.
"See," Alex seethed. "This is why we need the OTP rule."
Dangling her handcuffs in Alex's face, Sofia threatened to cuff her to the nearest table leg if she didn't calm down. Sara pouted and Olivia stared daggers at the blonde detective, until she re-sheathed her handcuffs.
"So," Buffy interrupted. "How would this OTP rule work?"
Catherine and Alex exchanged looks, and more than one person in the room detected signs of collusion; the prospect of the blonde ADA and CSI joining forces frightening to many of them.
"We," Catherine began, "decide on one single, true, pairing for each fandom or person and enforce that choice through every means at our disposal."
"We have means?" Gabrielle asked.
Faith took out her knife and slowly began cleaning the dirt from beneath her nails. "Just one pairing per person?" she asked.
"Of course. That's the point." Alex motioned to Olivia to confiscate the weapon but Olivia was ignoring her after Alex's attack attempt.
Nikki shrugged. "I don't see the point."
"Me either," Gabrielle agreed.
Catherine snorted. "Canon couples," she scoffed, "you don't know you're born."
The gavel whizzed through the air and came within an inch of Catherine's head, Gabrielle's look of innocence fooling no one.
"How do you decide on a pair?" Willow asked, poking her head up from her notebook.
"Popularity and longevity," Catherine suggested.
Sofia retrieved the gavel, pounding it rhythmically into her palm as she stared at Catherine's head.
Sara gulped. "Does that mean I'm stuck with Grissom?" She looked beseechingly at the group. "I love Gil but I don't 'love' Gil." She turned into Sofia's waiting arms, her shoulders heaving with unshed tears.
"Don't worry, honey, I'd never do that to you," Catherine reassured. She tried prying Sara's arms away from Sofia but she only managed to entangle herself in the two women's hold. "A little help?"
Buffy and Faith took hold of the struggling blonde and yanked her from amidst the other women's embrace.
"I don't like it," Buffy snapped.
"Not gonna happen," Faith agreed.
Willow tore a page from her notepad. "There are too many variables."
"What?" Gabrielle put on her most winning smile, secretly wishing she'd joined Xena on her fishing trip.
Unfolding one of her scrunched up pages, Willow passed the item to Gabrielle. "I have two canon partners, one of whom is dead and the other lovely, but a little young, and two slayers who buy me expensive lingerie on my birthday and fight for the right to cover me in chocolate and li -"
"It's complicated," Buffy interrupted.
Faith pointed her knife at Buffy. "We've got some heat goin' on, too."
"All three of you?" Olivia looked envious. "I told you polygamy was the way to go," she whispered to Alex.
"I will not share!" Alex screamed.
"Order, order!" Gabrielle banged her hand against the table.
"I want a vote!" Alex interrupted.
"I second that," Catherine chimed in, attempting to steal the gavel from Sofia, but failing miserably.
Helen looked at her watch. "Shouldn't we decide on a list of proposed OTPs before we vote? I'd hate to say yes and then get stuck with Bodybag as my one true love."
"She's right," Sara agreed. "Who gets who?"
Alex retrieved a stack of papers from her briefcase and passed a copy to everyone seated at the table.
"Xena." Gabrielle smiled. "Thank the gods."
Helen look towards Nikki. "Looks like we're stuck with each other," she laughed.
"Alex only. No one else. Ever! Ever I said!" Olivia read aloud.
"I get Catherine?" Sara questioned.
Sofia threw her balled up copy of the list at Catherine. "I get no one?"
"I get a dead woman," Willow sobbed. The memories of the last time she visited the wicca afterlife were still fresh in her memory and she didn't relish repeating them, even for Tara.
"We get each other." Buffy and Faith exchanged bored looks.
There was a pause.
"Hey!" Alex ducked as several balled up pages were thrown in her direction, two landing squarely in the middle of her forehead, the result of slayer precision.
"I think we should vote," Gabrielle decided, wanting to avert a full out paper-ball fight.
Sofia leant forward to whisper into Nikki's ear, the two coming to a quick agreement.
Catherine snatched the gavel and banged it against the table. "Vote!"
Alex was the first to speak. "I vote 'yes'."
"What a surprise," Sofia whispered to Nikki.
"I vote no." Olivia winced and began furiously rubbing her throbbing shin. "I mean yes."
"I'm going to abstain." Gabrielle decided and quickly moved her shins from out of the firing line.
"No." Nikki cut in.
"No?" Helen asked.
"No." Nikki reiterated, her look saying she'd explain later.
Helen shrugged. "No."
"Canon couples," Catherine muttered in disgust. "I vote yes."
"No way in hell!" Faith's knife imbedded itself in the conference room table.
Gabrielle winced. "There goes our deposit."
"I vote no." Buffy turned to Willow.
"Me, too," said the redhead.
"Me, three." Sofia smiled.
Catherine turned a pleading look on Sara; even though she'd already lost the vote, Catherine was hoping the other half of her OTP would see the light.
Sara looked from Catherine to Sofia to Olivia to Nikki, her mind conjuring up all the possibilities, before making her decision. "I vote 'Hell No'!"
Faith whooped and grabbed Willow in a fiery kiss, before turning to Buffy and laying a kiss of equal intensity on the blonde. Not wanting to be left out, Willow and Buffy followed up their Faith-kisses with a kiss of their own.
Sofia and Catherine looked at each other, shook their heads, and waited their turn to receive a kiss of celebration or commiseration from Sara.
Alex smacked Olivia on the arm and stormed from the room, her detective following in her wake.
Gabrielle slapped on the table. "Motion denied."
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