Breaking Down: A Support Group for... UsBy:
“Hello everyone! Please be seated. Welcome to this meeting of Breaking Down. As you all know, Breaking Down is a nationally known and recognized support group for recovering Twilight fanfiction addicts. You are here tonight because you all recognize the unhealthy hold fanfiction has on your lives and you aspire to be free of this addiction. My name is Mrs. Cope” (muffled giggling is heard) “and while I’ve never read fanfiction myself, I have read the Twilight books and I am an expert on addictive behavior…”
(Someone raises their hand.)
Mrs. Cope: Yes, you in the back row. Did you have a question?
Voice from the back: Yes I did. I just moved here recently from Phoenix, and I wondered if you might have my class schedule?
Mrs. Cope: (dryly) Very funny. Let’s get started, shall we? Angela, why don’t you go first; how was your week? Did you manage to provide home-cooked meals for your family?
Angela: I did for the last two days, but before that…something terrible happened. My next door neighbor found out about me.
Mrs. Cope: (gently) I’m so sorry. How was your addiction revealed?
Angela: Well, she’s quite a busybody. She saw me through my living room window for several hours each night, sitting on my comfy couch with my back to the window and my laptop open to…fanfiction.net. (Angela slowly buries her head in her hands.)
Mrs. Cope: How did her uncovering your secret make you feel?
Angela: Embarrassed, I guess.
Mrs. Cope: And what did you learn from this?
Angela: (looking up at Mrs. Cope) I learned that before reading fanfics on my comfy couch, I need to shut the drapes.
Mrs. Cope: (shaking her head, sadly) Tsk, tsk, Angela…
(Emily enters the room.)
Emily: Sorry I’m late ladies! I was helping little Tommy with his homework and time just…
Mrs. Cope: (interrupting) No you weren’t. You’re using your son as a cover story to hide the truth…
Angela: (whispering to her neighbor) Actually…Emily doesn’t have a son.
Mrs. Cope: …Now, tell the group what you were really doing.
Emily: (looking ashamed) I was lusting after Edward.
Mrs. Cope: And how exactly were you lusting after Edward?
Emily: (deep sigh) I was re-reading steamy passages from “
The Lost Boys”.
(Everyone at the same time whistles, claps, or calls out happily: woo woo! Yeah baby! Hubba, hubba!)
Mrs. Cope: Ladies! Please! Behave yourselves!
Leah: (loudly, to be heard over the noise) Honestly Emily…I don’t know why you can’t get over Edward.
Emily: (hotly) That’s because you’re obsessed with that weirdo Jasper!
Leah: That is true; Jasper is sexy as hell. And I can appreciate your Edward too, especially when he’s boinking Jasper…
Emily: (furiously) Edward is not gay!! And for that matter, neither is Jasper! Alright?!
Leah: You just can’t handle reading slash.
Emily: (defensively) That’s not true. I can read slash. I read all the Jasper stories recommended by TLYDF…
Mrs. Cope: (interrupting in horror) Emily! You know the Breaking Down national rules and regulations. Ladies? What do we say about that particular website? Altogether now:
Mrs. Cope: The Ficster Blog won’t help us quit! Be strong and stay away…
Everyone: (sounding bored) It’s lazy yet discerning and will lead us all astray.
Mrs. Cope: That’s right. So, no more reading that blog ladies, understood?
(Everyone looks away, mumbling.)
Mrs. Cope: Now, it doesn’t matter if you’re obsessing over Edward or Jasper or…or Carlisle for that matter…
Voice from the side: (interrupting, orgasmically) Carlisle! Yummmmm!
Mrs. Cope: (looking flustered) My point is, no matter which character you’re obsessing over, you’re still obsessing! Now then…Jessica, how did your week go? Did you do any housekeeping? Jessica?
Angela: She quit the group.
Mrs. Cope: She did? Why?
Angela: (smirking) Her boyfriend prefers her being fanfic obsessed for…ahem …personal reasons.
Mrs. Cope: (with a puzzled look) Oh. (clears throat loudly) Well, ahh, ladies, I forgot to mention we have a new person joining us today. (gesturing to a lady in the middle of the room) Welcome, and please stand up and tell us about yourself.
Renee: (standing up and looking ill at ease) Well, ah, you can call me Renee, I guess. I’ve been reading fanfiction for about a year and I’ve been writing it for the last 9 months.
(Everyone gasps. Heads turn to look at Renee.)
Leah: (amazed) You write fanfiction??
Renee: Well, yeah. I’m a graduate student, and my addiction is really interfering with my…
Angela: (eagerly) Which one? What’s your fic called?
Renee: I’d rather not say. I’ve written a few fics actually.
Emily: Do you write canon or alternate universe?
Renee: Ummm, I write AU…mostly Bella and Edward stories…
(Everyone in the room converges on Renee, asking her questions.)
Mrs. Cope: Ladies? Ladies?
(Everyone ignores her completely.)
Leah: (doubtfully to Renee) Have we heard of your stories?
Renee: Well, yeah, probably.
Mrs. Cope: (trying to take back control of the meeting) Ladies! Don’t you all remember the reasons you came here tonight? Your messy houses? Your ill-fed families? Your lack of a good 8 hours of sleep??
(Everyone is still buzzing around Renee.)
Mrs. Cope: Does anybody here actually want to get over this obsession??
(No one hears her. Her control of the meeting is over.)
Mrs. Cope: (weakly, recognizing defeat) Can anybody here recommend a good fanfic?
Author’s note: Many thanks to Merina G. for sparking the idea for this article by admitting her need for “some sort of fanfiction AA”.
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