My crash course in fanfiction came in junior high, when my best friend got me…
Rereading my teenage self-insert "sequel" to the movie X2: X-Men United
by Alicia Kania
November 2, 2017 at 9:00 am
Fanfiction Flashback is a new series where POMEmag contributors reflect on their youthful fanfic creations and present them to you in their (largely uncensored) glory. Join us for teen and preteen angst, anguish, and thirst as we dive into Alicia’s adventures with X2: X-Men United.
Welcome, welcome, welcome to the debut installment of Fanfiction Flashback, wherein I’ll re-read a fanfic I wrote as a teenager and share my reactions now, as a real-life adult person. I’ll laugh at myself. You’ll laugh at me. We’ll laugh together. But, mostly, you’ll laugh at me.
Recently, I explored a handful of early fanfics that I re-discovered after an intense cleaning session. It was one of the most fun articles I’ve ever written. But that was just the tip of the iceberg as far as my old fanfiction goes, and shortly afterward, a happy little pomegranate rolled onto my desk and said, “Alicia, you have more adventures to share with the world.” This magical and inspiring sentient fruit was right.
To kick things off, let’s explore my teenage romance with the early, not-yet-frighteningly-muscled Wolverine. Spelling and grammar errors are left intact in the fanfic excerpts!
Movie: X2: X-Men United
Age written: 15
Filed under: Unabashed Self-Inserts
As a fledgling fic writer, I started out writing stories in a dialogue-focused “script” format, as seen in my previous piece. By sometime in mid-highschool, I had leveled up to writing fanfiction in normal prose. Naturally, I was still happily pairing myself with characters, but in my defense, did anyone watch the first two X-Men movies and not fall a little bit in love with Hugh Jackman? I set this fanfic a few months after the events of X2, and it begins with Logan returning from a motorcycle ride to find an unfamiliar pickup truck parked in front of the school. Little does he know, it belongs to the Coolest Mutant Girl Evar, and she will later judge him for enjoying beer. Action!
Logan entered the building and was greeted by the ring of the bell signaling the end of the school day. The halls flooded with students and he made his way to Professor Xavier’s classroom.
“See you tomorrow,” Xavier was saying to the exiting students.
“Hello, Logan.” He said when he entered the room.
“Whose truck is that outside?” Logan asked, getting right to the point.
“We have a new addition to the school.” Xavier wheeled toward him.
“A student?” The way Logan asked it made it a half statement.
“Well, she’s a bit old for schooling; unless of course she decides she’s interested in college courses. Either way, she’ll be staying here for a while.”
“Where is she now?” Logan shifted his current position of leaning against the wall with his arms crossed ever so slightly.
“She’s been given her own room in the east wing, Logan, why the sudden interest?”
“No reason.” He answered casually, briefly looking at the floor, then back to the Professor.
Yeah, no reason, because it makes absolutely NO SENSE that he’s asking, except that he has to meet her so they can ~fall in love~. He immediately seeks her out, and I describe her appearance (me) in painstaking detail, which includes a baffling “shorter in the front” description of my teenage pixie cut, an outfit straight from my closet at the time, and the use of the word “unique” to describe my very standard human lips.
After what must have been several minutes of Wolverine just staring at my character while she unpacks, she finally notices him:
Logan stepped through the doorway as the young woman, no taller than Rouge, looked him over, her eyes widening.
“You’re..” then she smiled, “You’re Wolverine!” Her green eyes glistened as she stared up at him like an eleven-year-old meeting Brittany Spears thanks to a radio contest and some lucky phone dialing.
“Wow, uh, I’ve heard about you, um, you’re…” she blinked, “Oh, uh, I’m sorry. Hi. I’m Tommy.” She gave a close-mouthed smile and extended her hand.
“I’m Logan.” He responded, accepting the handshake.
“Logan..” Tommy repeated, looking briefly at Logan’s shoes.
“So, Tommy, huh?” He asked, cocking his head a bit at the name.
“Thomasina.” She said with a tiny nod. “I go by Tommy, though; it’s not that I hate my real name or anything emo like that, I guess Tommy just suits me better.”
There was a moment of silence as they both processed what had been said.
“I haven’t come up with any cool mutant names yet,” Tommy said with a slight shrug, “but I figure I got time.”
“So what’s your… uh,” Logan was unsure whether he should use ‘power’ or ‘mutation’. Luckily, Thomasina caught on.
“Nothing very original.” Was her answer.
I did an actual spit-take when I re-read this. Not only did I give myself a masculine name as a sign of super unique edginess, did you catch what my actual name was? Thomasina. If you don’t immediately recognize that, we had very different childhoods.
This is an old Disney movie I watched over and over as a kid. The cat’s name is Thomasina. So, in my fanfic where I was probably going marry Wolverine so that we could fuck without “sinning,” I named myself after a fictional cat from my childhood AND gave myself a male nickname. Anyway, Logan shows off his claws, and Tommy reveals that her mutation gives her super strength, which she demonstrates by lifting him off the ground. He calls her “kid” as he’s leaving, and she corrects him to say that she’s actually 23, since it’s important that he knows she’s a real, sophisticated Adult. After a scene showing Magneto and “Mystic” making evil plans elsewhere, Tommy runs into Logan in the kitchen.
Four days had passed since Thomasina had arrived at the School for Gifted Youngsters, and since then she had not again seen Wolverine. Then, alas, on this particular afternoon as she headed into the kitchen for a Diet Coke, she found him standing there, leaning against the counter, clutching an empty beer bottle.
“Isn’t this a school?” She asked, eyeing the drained Rolling Rock.
Logan shrugged. “It is. But I’m not a student.”
Tommy nodded, removing a soda can from the refrigerator.
“I would go into an ‘alcohol is bad’ spill, but since you can regenerate and such I guess your not effected.”
“Something like that… So, you’ve gotten settled in. How’s this joint working out for you so far?”
Tommy took a seat at the island.
“’S been okay. Kinda sucks though, that I got here a month after that girl died. Everyone’s all depressed and stuff.” She sipped her coke.
“Jean Grey.” Logan corrected, tossing his bottle in the trash.
“That girl? Her name was Jean Grey…” Logan felt compelled to add to that sentence but no words came.
“So, you knew her.”
“I didn’t get details or anything, I just heard about how she, uh, Jean Grey, like, sacrificed herself or something.”
“Yeah,” Logan grabbed a stool and sat across from her.
“I was there.” He said as a plain fact, once again resetting their eye contact.
Tommy’s eye’s widened.
Right, so, to clarify: I made my character disapprove of Logan drinking beer. I WANTED TO BANG WOLVERINE, BUT I DIDN’T WANT HIM TO DRINK. I had honestly sort of forgotten how staunchly anti-alcohol I was as a teenager, but as I read this, it all came rushing back. I’m confident that he would have sobered up before the wedding if I had finished this fanfic—after I had helped him “heal” from the loss of Jean, of course. Also great is that I probably asked my father for the name of a “good beer” so that I could make the scene more “authentic,” but specifying that it was Rolling Rock just seems bizarre in context. Less great: I made Tommy come across as super self-centered and shitty—not only is she judgmental, but after four days, she doesn’t know Jean’s name and is feeling sorry for herself? Classy. Also, of course Diet Coke was Tommy’s soda of choice, because that was and is my favorite drink in the entire world, always and forever. (Couldn’t have anyone thinking she went to the kitchen for a fucking Sprite, okay?) Good thing they had some cold and ready, too, or she might have chucked that refrigerator right out the kitchen window.
Unlike lots of my other stories, I don’t think I ever shared this one with any friends, which was probably for the best. I don’t remember a single other fanfic where my self-insert drove a pickup, had a highly embarrassing name, wore clothes identical to those in my closet, AND acted holier-than-thou in regards to alcohol, so this one is truly The Whole Package. All that said, I in no way resent nor regret this wish-fulfillment story, or even the fact that I had my character stick to my naive “principles.” At that young, awkward stage of my life, fanfiction gave me an outlet to go on any adventure I wanted, to have super powers, and to catch the attention of The Hot Guy. Nothing about this story surprises me, because it’s in such stark contrast to the nerdy, invisible teenager I was in real life. Hell, I raise a glass to her. Of Diet Coke, of course.
Want to share your Fanfiction Flashbacks with us? Email firstname.lastname@example.org to guide us through your teen fandom memories. Special thanks to Alicia for coming up with this series and kicking things off!
© 2014 - 2017 Alicia Kania and POMEgranate Magazine