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17 August 2017 @ 12:18 pm
LJ Idol Season Ten: "Flaw Fatale"  
Flaw Fatale
idol season ten | week 28 | 388 words
Fatal Flaw


I have seen a few summers in my time, though I won't say how many. A lady doesn't discuss her age.

Nevertheless, I've still got it.

A man may dream of riding the stars, or building a civilization whose legacy will last for centuries. But in the end, he will always come back to me. He can't help it—once I've laid my mark on him, he can't resist, and he'll never forget what he truly wants. It's in his nature.

It always was.

I have an allure all my own, and for each man, I know the darkest part of his desires. He may chase after some high-minded creature with self-important ideals for a while, but he won't be able to forget me. I've got a hold on him he can't escape.

I won't play the vamp, and I'm not some siren luring poor sailors to their doom. I am simply the one a man is fated to notice, and having seen me, he won't be able to get me out of his mind.

How can I take so many different forms, and yet essentially always be the same? The secret is in the eye of the beholder. The truth of me never changes, but my appearance shifts to suit individual needs. One man's great white whale is another man's indecisiveness or self-doubt. Some may succumb to me when I wear the form of pride or ambition, while others are smitten by simple greed. Just know that I am real and I am dangerous, and I always play to win.

I am a fraying thread of dignity clad in a tailored suit, or the soul of seductive vulnerability in opera gloves and a black silk dress.

Someone once said I was nothing more than a literary device, but just look at me. Does a literary device have shoes like these peep-toe Louboutins with three-inch heels? Certainly not!

So, if you're planning a mission or a quest, or you're simply living the part of a tragic protagonist or hero, we may be destined to meet. Really, it all depends on your fate.

And please, don't worry about finding me. If I'm in your future, it will happen on its own. I won't even have to look for you.

I'll be waiting right here inside you the whole time...


If you enjoyed this story, you can vote for it along with other fine entries here. Note that there are two polls!

Murielle: Scrunchedmurielle on August 17th, 2017 06:54 pm (UTC)
So clever! So true! Meta taken to a higher level, and then some. Well done!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 18th, 2017 03:53 am (UTC)
Thank you! As soon as I saw this prompt, I wanted to write this mash-up of it with the classic literary and movie character.

But as always, have it both be true and also not give it away too soon. :)

Thanks for reading!
bleodsweanbleodswean on August 18th, 2017 01:19 am (UTC)
EEEEE! What a great "voice" you gave your hamartia! I could hear her even more than I could see her! Nice job with this!

The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 18th, 2017 04:11 am (UTC)
Hah-- I see you even know the classical term for this literary effect!

The idea of personifying it was irresistible to me, especially when the title (and concept) suggested itself immediately.

You can never escape yourself, even if you don't recognize that your undoing stems from who you are rather than than any poor luck that might have happened.

cindy: misc fictsuki_no_bara on August 18th, 2017 03:16 am (UTC)
short and sweet and very meta! i liked it.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 18th, 2017 04:11 am (UTC)
Thank you! Meta is awfully hard to pass up, especially when it leans toward crack. :)
penpusherpenpusher on August 18th, 2017 07:40 pm (UTC)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 18th, 2017 11:59 pm (UTC)
Hahaha! True enough, until it happens to the character that is YOU. :)
marlawentmadmarlawentmad on August 19th, 2017 08:50 pm (UTC)

This is a delightful use of the prompt!

The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 20th, 2017 03:11 am (UTC)
Thank you! Not the expected approach to it, I'm sure, but definitely the one that appealed to me! How could I resist?
i_17bingoi_17bingo on August 21st, 2017 12:49 pm (UTC)
As a lover of the femme fatale, I have to say I was very impressed with this piece. She takes on many forms, and she has many different personalities, but she's always a siren.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 21st, 2017 06:19 pm (UTC)
Yay, I'm so glad you liked this!

Twisting the approach into a femme fatale as a fatal flaw was the first thing that occurred to me, because it was such a weird idea and I loved the opportunity for a mashup.

The movie or literary version of the femme fatale can be different enough from one interpretation to another that you might not recognize her at first... and neither will the main character, even as he gets pulled into something that nearly or actually destroys him. That works very well here, as the instance of her is actually something inside the protagonist that he doesn't realize can destroy him or those around him.

And of course... she doesn't necessarily mean for any of it to happen. It is just how fate unspools...
alycewilsonalycewilson on August 21st, 2017 09:39 pm (UTC)
Very true! I feel like that captures very vividly the regrettable side of our natures.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 21st, 2017 11:39 pm (UTC)
If we are lucky enough to recognize those shortcomings, we can potentially avoid having them take us down for good. But not everyone is able to be that self-aware!

Edited at 2017-08-21 11:40 pm (UTC)