12 Character meme… Billy Budd / Fairy Queen

…. And our Eyes tell each other, what neither dares Name.
(Fairy Queen)

The questions were collected by a friend of mine, Sieglinde — visit her journal, if you like!

Her meme approach to Britten’s operas inspired me to do one for Billy Budd (Benjamin Britten) vs. The Fairy Queen (Henry Purcell)

  1. Puck — Oberon’s  — well,… personal sprite
  2. Billy — Handsomeness and goodness.
  3. Claggart — the Master at Arms on board the “Indomitable”
  4. Dick — The fifth wheel in the production of “Fairy Queen” I am referring to
  5. Novice — A medium wimp, not into flogging, but kind of fond of Claggart
  6. Vere — An epic wimp, talks to himself a lot, singing lovely monologues — never managing to say anything substantial, though, even when asked if he has anything to add
  7. Oberon — King of the Fair Folk
  8. Titania — Queen of the Fairies, his spouse
  9. Drunken Poet — A poet. Drunk, and maintains this state during the opera.
  10. Titania’s Fairies — The shining ones….
  11. Oberon’s fairies — The mean ones…
  12. Indian Slave — Titania’s toy, the prize of the Fairy Quarrel the opera starts with. Oberon freaks out and trouble ensues.

1) Have you ever read a 6 (Vere)/11 (Oberon’s Fairies) fanfic before?
No, but they would all have a great time, I’m absolutely sure of it, as soon as Vere got over the first shock, and Puritanism.

2) Do you think 4 (Dick) is hot? How hot?
Hm not hot exactly, but very cute, especially if singing “Mopsa” in his underwear.

3) What would happen if 12 (the Indian Slave) got 8 (Titania) pregnant?
Titania would get really bad mood-swings.  The “Fairy Quarrel” at the beginning of the opera, where she casts “firebolt rank 11” is nothing in comparison — trust me…  So — beware.
Probably the Indian Slave would seek hugs and comfort some time from Oberon. (How long are elves pregnant? This can be really bad — poor Slave 🙂 )

4) Do you recall any fics about 9 (The drunken Poet)?
I prithee,  I prithee, I prithee, do not pinch me so…
No, but he would deserve some.
In the production with Jonathan Best/Michael Chance (Drunken Poet/Dick) they are coincident with “Coridon and Mopsa”, so they end up together. I totally approve of that.

5) Would 2 (Billy) and 6 (Vere) make a good couple?
Yes, definitely! If Vere would find out who snatched his balls and keeps them hopefully in a safe place, and Billy gets hold of the guy who snatched important parts of his brain, it might work out. It would also work if they in a freak spacetime-continuinuinuum-accident they were beamed to some romantic place. Suggested duet:

Come, come, come, let us leave the Town
And in some lonely place,
Where Crouds and Noise were never known,
Resolve to spend our days.
In pleasant Shades upon the Grass
At Night our selves we’ll lay;
Our Days in harmless Sport shall pass,
Thus Time shall slide away.
(Fairy Queen — Sounds better than the prospect of  “Let me be your coxswain”, doesn’t it?)

6) 5/9 (the Novice/Drunken Poet) or 5/10 (the Novice/Titania’s fairies)?
Titania’s fairies are not nice, they tend to pinch a lot. (Ask 9.) So he would be much better off with the Drunken Poet — he likes to hug, and in the version from the National Opera, even to have some more, but in a charming sort of way.

7) What would happen if 7 (Oberon) walked in on 2 (Billy) and 12 (the Indian Slave) having sex?
He wouldn’t just “walk in” — There are certain standards…  He is king of the fair folk, after all. He would stay back and enjoy the show. Quietly, calmly deciding who would be worth it more, just swoop in when he deems it appropriate, snatch the guy he chose — probably Billy — and…
Or, he is into threesomes, and…
What do I know? Go and ask Oberon!
(“Give me that boy!” Oberon — Shakespeare)

8) Make up a summary of a 3/10 (Claggart/Titania’s fairies) Fanfic. 
It would end up like an exclusive holiday — after he discouraged them from pinching him by offering some lashes with his rattan in exchange. So Claggart would relax, having a pedicure and a head massage, sipping at a Caipirinha, while watching boys in tight swimwear. Well, maybe he goes for Grace out of Titania’s entourage. “Salt and Pepper” maybe even more, whom with their powdered wigs and suits look a lot like Vere in drag.

9) Is there any such thing as a 1/8 (Puck/Titania) fluff?
I don’t even think a sexual encounter between those two is thinkable, unless under the effect of Oberon’s love potion. Somehow I doubt though that the potion tends people to get very fluffy. So — a definite “no.”

10) Suggest a title for a 7/12 (Oberon/Indian Slave) Hurt/Comfort fic.
“What Do You Mean By… “You Could’ve Asked Before”??”

11) What kind of plot would you use if you wanted 4 (Dick/Puck) to de-flower 1?
He comes a few millenia too late I guess.

12) Does anyone on your friends list read 3 (Claggart) het?
Claggart? Well not completely ruled out. If he doesn’t exactly look at the other person’s face while doing it. Though — not unless in dire need I think.

13) Does anyone on your friends-list write or draw 11 (Oberon’s Fairies)?
Not up to now, but they are inspiring.

14) Would anyone on your friends-list write 2/4/5 (Billy/Dick/Novice)?
Awwwwww.   That would be cute. I wonder if one of them isn’t a virgin. But then, maybe Billy isn’t.  I will start to think about a plot 🙂

15) What might 7 (Oberon) scream at a moment of great passion?
I doubt it can be rendered in out common speech.

16) If you wrote a song-fic about 8 (Titania), what song would you choose?
I would base it on “The Plaint”, of course…

O, let me forever weep:
My eyes no more shall welcome sleep.
I’ll hide me from the sight of day,
And sigh my soul away.
He’s gone, his loss deplore,
And I shall never see him more.

17) If you wrote a 1/6/12 (Puck, Vere, Indian Slave) fic, what would the warning be?
Rated R, consensual, light bondage (Puck will just sit there and have a laugh. Vere and the Indian Slave wouldn’t even need much love potion.)

18) What might be a good pick-up line for 10 (Titania’s fairies) to use on 2 (Billy)?
“Hello Sailor!” will do.

19) When was the last time you read a fic about 5 (Novice)?
Honestly — never. Cannot quite forgive his cheating on Billy, so I’m not very tempted to write one.

20) What is 6’s (Vere’s) super-secret kink?
I have to ask him in private… I suppose he is into dressing up Billy in his own full dress uniform on special occasions.

21) Would 11 (Oberon’s fairies) get in bed with 9 (Drunken Poet)? Drunk or sober?
Jonathan Best is cute! so no need for the fairies to get drunk. And well, the drunkenness of the other is implied.

22) If 3 (Claggart) and 7 (Oberon) get together, who tops?
This has to be seriously negotiated…   I think Oberon will show more perseverance.

23) “1 (Puck) and 9 (Drunken Poet) are in a happy relationship until 9 (Drunken Poet) suddenly runs off with 4 (Dick). One (1), broken-hearted, has a hot one-night stand with 11 (Oberon’s fairies) and a brief unhappy affair with 12 (the Indian Slave), then follows the wise advice of 5 (the Novice) and finds true love with 3 (Claggart).” What title would you give this fic?
A Midsummer Night’s Confused Dream.

24) Name three of your friends who might read it.
Sieglinde (will go *eyesroll*), Biri (will have a laugh), the rest of my friends threatened to stop being friends if molested any further with that kind of stuff.

25) Name one person who should write it.

26) How would you feel if 7 (Oberon)/8 (Titania) was canon?
They are bound like night and day, but they cannot stand each other. Does that count as canon?
“Ill met by moonlight, proud Titania” (Oberon)
“I have forsworn his bed and company.” (Titania)


27) Who would make a better college professor: 6 (Vere) or 11 (Oberon’s fairies)?
Now this is a narrow match. Vere would be slightly better for the morale I think, but the pupils would fall asleep a lot during his lessons.

28) Do you think 2 (Billy) is hot? How hot?
Not the one from this production, but the character in essence is meant to be hot. He is so hot he can afford to be shirtless in the 2°C air temperature in the mist and not only be hot himself but make all the innocent bystanders want to shed their cloaks.
To say it with Melville: “They took to him like hornets to treacle…”

29) Does anyone on your friends list read 7 (Oberon) slash?
Not that I know of, but it would definitely be worth writing; and, subsequently, reading.

30) 12 (the Indian Slave) sends 8 (Titania) on a mission. What is it and does it succeed?
This would be like… “Oh could you please, what you just did before you know.. hmm… exactly…” 100% success.


31) What would 5 (the Novice) most likely be arrested for?
False testimony, attempt to incite or participate in an offence.


32) If you had to walk home through a bad neighbourhood late at night, would you feel safer in the company of 7 (Oberon) or 8 (Titania)?
Agreed, my neighbourhood is not the best, but even the worst wannabe-gangstahs are not as dangerous as Oberon or Titania, so both would be fine.


Other questions from another 12-meme

I) 1 (Puck), 6 (Vere), and 11 (Oberon’s fairies) are all told to wait in a room together until someone comes in to get them. Let’s say no one does. Who would leave the room first?
Neither of them would leave for a long time. They would start having a fun time I guess. Even Vere would smile, perhaps.

II) If 2 (Billy) had to do one nice thing for 8 (Titania) , what would it be?
Stuttering won’t be a drawback for what she has in mind, surely.

III)  If 4 (Dick) and 7 (Oberon) co-starred in a movie, what genre would it most likely fall under?
Thriller, Dick playing Oberon’s sidekick, or Sci-Fi
Alternatively: Dick as the lawful private detective, Oberon as the colourful villain

IV) If 3 (Claggart) was made into a toy, who would be more likely to buy it? 9 (the Drunken Poet) or 10 (Titania’s fairies)?
If it was a voodoo doll — Titania’s fairies. (“Pinch him forty, forty times,
Pinch till he confess his Crimes.”).    Otherwise, the Drunken Poet, who without a glance notices that Claggart needs a hug.

V) Would 5 (the Novice) be likely to consider stalking 12 (the Indian Slave) or vise versa?
The Novice got no problem with stalking Billy, so why should he have a problem with stalking the Indian Slave?

VI) What would 6 (Vere) make the better star of? An anime or a newspaper comic strip?
Most definitely — a comic strip.

VII) 8 (Titania) wants to buy a car but can’t decide who offers a better bargain. Should (s)he buy from 2 (Billy) or 11 (Oberon’s fairies)?
Definitely the latter. Billy won’t lie, but he has no idea of anything. Sure his knowledge does not extend to cars.

VIII) If 5 (the Novice) wanted to dye his or her hair but could not decide on the color, would (s)he rely on 1’s (Puck) opinion or 4’s (Dick)?
He would ask Puck and rule out the option given as advice then, if he has brains. If he asked Dick, he would probably say something like, “Natural looks best on you…”

IX) Whose babies would be cuter? 12 and 3’s (Indian Slave/Claggart’s) or 9 and 2’s (Drunken Poet/Billy’s)? (If it is impossible for them to breed because of gender or species, just go with it and pretend that it was possible, please.)
Claggart’s/the Indian Slave’s offspring would be of almost illegal beauty, but concerning cuteness-factor, I think the Drunken Poet’s and Billy’s would win the contest. They would have the right mixture of cheek and runny nose to fall for.

X) Who would have a DeviantArt account; and if not, what would their reason be?
They all would have one… Vere with focus on ancient greek vases and statues, Claggart of everything related to Slash, and the rest also according to their likings. I suspect, Claggart and Vere would end up on each other’s friends-list without knowing it 🙂

… And still some more questions, by someone very special enduring my deviant mind for quite long by now…

1) If 2 (Billy) met 3 (Claggart) in a western setup, who would be the horse?
Claggart would pay extra to be allowed to be Billy’s horse… 🙂

2) If 7 (Oberon) would work as an election helper/PR-manager for 4 (Dick) in for the presidential campaign, which slogan would he come up with for him?
I love Dick! (okay, not mine… already owned by Richard Cheese)

3) If 8 (Titania) was asked to paint a ship for 2 (Billy), what colours would she choose?
Something matching “welkin-eyed” Billy…  A shade of light blue?

4) What uniform would 6 (Vere) want 2 (Billy) to wear in a personal encounter?
Either his (Vere’s) or Adam’s undress.

5) If 3 (Claggart) would chose a costume for 7 (Oberon), for a theme party “historical politics” — what would he think fitting?
A wise strategist, perhaps a bit too revolutionary and hedonistic at times. Napoleon or the Queen of Sheba

6) If free in his choice, which military rank or position would 6 (Vere) assign 12 (the Indian Slave)?
Coxswain, or any place where he can be close.

7) Which of Steven King’s novels would the chars favour?
Puck — (He will tear up any novel to little pieces and let the scraps rain down to annoy loving couples)
Billy — “The Eyes of the Dragon” (Audiobook)
Claggart — “Insomnia”, “The Shining” (only repediately reading the pages where in the flashback the hotel owner scr*ws his assistant or vice versa, omitting the rest)
Dick —  He is too soft-hearted for King
Novice — “Needful Things”, reading that almost everybody does anything for a little prize comforts him greatly.
Vere — He will stop reading King after the first three pages of “The Mist”, which he picked for the title; it disturbs him, deeply; he will stick to Plato instead.
Oberon — “Nightmares and Dreamscapes”, “The Dark Tower”
Titania — “Misery”, “The Dark Tower”
Drunken Poet — “On writing”, apart from that — why bother with novels. He will read “Four Past Midnight”, and others of King’s short stories.
Titania’s Fairies — Oberon’s fairies — both pick out the scandalous parts and exclusively read them to or hide them from each other.
Indian Slave — He likes picture books!

8) Try to assume some family relations between the characters.
Claggart (origin quite unknown) could indeed be related to Oberon, judging by his temper and looks. The Novice must be the Drunken Poet’s brother — both opposed to physical violence of any sort. The Indian slave is a half-orphan, Billy a foundling, they could be related, e.g. have the same mother.

9) In an Ancient Greek setup, make every one of the chars vow allegiance to a god of their choice. Which one would they worsphip?
Puck — Hermes, of course (“I’ll put a girdle round about the earth In forty minutes.” — Shakespeare)
Billy — Handsomeness and goodness, must be Apollo
Claggart — Ares and Dionysos to equal parts I guess, maybe at dark moments even Thanathos
Dick — He would pray to Athene, but to little avail
Novice — Hestia, he wants a motherly hug I guess
Vere — Apollo
Oberon — Likes to cheat on his wife a lot — must be Zeus, with strong sympathies for Diana. He likes to hunt…. — Oh wait, that was a different elf
Titania — Hestia, but in private, Aphrodite
Drunken Poet — Hermes, of course — he is a poet after all. And for extra creativity, Dionysos
Titania’s Fairies — Aphrodite, Diana
Oberon’s fairies — Hermes, Diana
Indian Slave — Aphrodite

Suggestet Final Chorus:

They shall be as happy as they’re fair;
Love shall fill all the Places of Care:
And every time the Sun shall display his Rising Light,
It shall be to them a new Wedding-Day;
And when he sets, a new Nuptial-Night.

The screenshots are taken from the DvDs Billy Budd (Mackerras) and Fairy Queen (Kok, English National Opera), both definitely worth buying.



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