Bullet With Your Name

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The Professionals Fanfiction
Title: Bullet With Your Name
Author(s): JGL
Date(s): 2007
Length: 6750 word count
Genre: slash
Fandom: The Professionals
External Links: online here

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Bullet With Your Name is a Professionals slash story by JGL.

Summaries

Author's summary: "Love all, trust a few. Do wrong to none."

Reactions and Reviews

JGL captures the feel of the show with a minimum amount of words. Most all readers will find their Bodie and Doyle on the page. It's in a look, a gesture, the voice, all the layers our lads have can be found. Best of all, one can't wait to see where it all goes.[1]
So..... exactly what was it that I liked so much about this story? Apart from the fluent, clear, sure-footed and eloquent writing and the ability of the writer to bring to life – to allow me to visualise - every scene she describes? Apart from the way the writer manages to retain the 'true' voice of Pros - the canon - keeping our lads as 'blokes' while allowing them to fall in love?....And their slow discovery of each other as something other than working partners - their falling in love - is *sweet*. Not the saccharine flavoured, slushy sweetness of heart-shaped Valentine cards, but a more gentle, whimsical, plausible and envy-inducing sweetness which slots into the story naturally - at the right time and place - and not something which has been lobbed in unexpectedly like a misplaced grenade taking the reader completely by surprise...[2]
I thought it was good - I've kept the print-out. Had some problems with Americanisms: 'ass' for 'arse', and the cinnamon gum (does anyone on this planet think that cinnamon gum is OK except for Americans? Yes, that was a rhetorical question). But there's some great writing - you've highlighted some of it - and nice banter. The action/pace is great, and the way the relationship develops through the story is lovely and believable.[3]
I loved this story - so many things about it appealed to me when I first saw it on the Circuit. I think most especially it is the way the author captures Bodie & Doyle (I can forgive the 'cinnamon gum' *g*), with nice little touches like undercover work appealing to Doyle's warped sense of humour, and the way Bodie thinks about Doyle, and the strength of the two of them together. Lots of stand out moments...[4]
I'm definitely getting pickier over some things though, because this time the Americanisms really did jump out at me, which I find quite annoying in an otherwise well-written story (though there were some typos and very odd phrases that stood out this time too - maybe I need to give up betaing, so that I don't notice things like that any more!) Not so much just American spellings and words and ideas (like the cinnamon chewing gum), but dialogue that to me came out sounding American - "You have got to be fucking kidding me!" and too many goddammits and sonofabitchs - or perhaps just strangely placed ones. Sometimes modernisms too... It's odd though - it's as if I can go with mistakes and so on up to a point, and then I tip right over and just start noticing every little niggle, even if they're things that might actually have been okay back then, but have become cliches etc since....[5]
One of my favourite types of PROS stories are the stories which show the evolution of the lads’ relationship through the years. There are lots of “relationship-through-the years” stories available online; notably written by PFL, Miriam Heddy, and LRH Balzer, just to name a few authors.

Bullet with Your Name by JGL shows the progress of the lads’ relationship from three different periods in their lives, beginning with their first undercover op. The story is written from Bodie’s POV.

I liked how the writer has written the characters of both Bodie and Doyle that seemed very true to the canon, and that both lads are equal in their partnership. There is a good pace to the story, and the reader could easily visualise the action scenes as written by the author.

And the story contains some terrific lines. This one is from right after the first undercover op when it goes seriously wrong.

And Bodie, who knew that courage was all about how you functioned when you were afraid, and not about the absence of fear -- and who was still young enough to prize bravery nearly above all else -- felt something change inside him. He held onto Doyle's thin, strong hand -- and Doyle let him.

I hope you will enjoy reading this fic as much as I did.[6]
I enjoyed this. I liked the structure of the story, with the three 'ages' of the partnership and the way the villain who recognised Doyle reappeared in the last part. I enjoyed the way the working relationship was built up at the same time as the personal one. I thought the writing was good - it was a smooth 'read' which means a lot of work has gone on in the background. We got plenty of angst and grittiness about the probable life expectancy of agents and yet the ending was upbeat, which always pleases me. (I like my Doyle and Bodie to live forever - if I want death and destruction I head for original fic or a fandom where it's canon like Spooks or Torchwood!) It wasn't a particularly long fic and yet we feel at the end that we have taken a long journey with the lads - I like it when authors tell us a lot in comparatively few words. Thanks for the rec! [7]
Episode fic isn't my favourite genre.

Maybe it works in a short form with those 'four things are this, but one is that...' stories. But here I plunged into the first part of the story, and very soon it's over. You can argue that it is predictable what comes next at hospital – sure – but what for are we reading anyway? The same with the second and the third part. Don't get me wrong – I like each part! There are beautiful moments! And the events in the end belong to the first op. - but I really would have loved a long story with a steady development. But then I never liked year-hopping, or those awful family sagas with many generations. *shivers*

But I love the ending!

It is very exciting and I'm always happy when they leave CI5 alive![8]
I'd add that the re-introduction of the sandy-haired man really lifts this fic. In most 'episodic' stories I've read, the episodes aren't connected with each other except by the lads as characters. So it is an excellent device that, apparently nine years later and after so much has happened, the same man reappears. Both times, he has a decisive role. The first time, it is the catalyst for them to fall in love. The second time, it is the catalyst for them to retire and live the rest of their lives together.

And the scene in the middle is good, with the lush description and a beautiful setting. There too I like the way Doyle doesn't immediately reveal why he's so wound up, not until after he's let his passion about Bodie's near escape take its course.

And the gentle humour works well- Bodie's reluctance to admit that Doyle is a better shot than him. And the coolness under fire in the final scene is brill. "So you're walking away first?" Doyle fired twice, aiming into the space between door and frame -- sheer bad temper, in Bodie's opinion. They're just such old hands at it.

If there was a bit that nearly threw me out of the story (apart from the unlikely veranda and screen door of the last house) it was the description of the undercover op at the beginning. There, the author's narrative voice impinged on the Bodie point-of-view. I do not know how one could avoid that in order to set the scene. Maybe it was in fact unnecessary - we only need to know they're undercover as Roy Dolan and Burke (good names!)[9]
I enjoyed this story a lot. Other than the complete lack of a Brit spell check, it was a nice story. I thought it moved along well, and I didn't find the first part too much. I liked the lads' interaction and how they moved on together from beginning to veterans in CI5.[10]
Having just re-read - or at least started re-reading - I'm finding that there are things that grate on me... I didn't particularly have any problems with the set-up in the first part dragging on, but there's something about the point of view that seems neither one thing nor another... I'm not dedicated to "you must stay in tight third" or whatever, as alot of fans seem to be these days, but I'm thinking that this is author's pov rather than anything else - and the American spelling and occasional Americanism reinforces that... ("Competency"? "like a stuck pig"? etc) Then we get Doyle clutching his "narrow midriff" - do we care that it's narrow when he's being attacked? - which pulled me out of the moment, and later his traditional "chipped-tooth grin"... Okay, I believe this was the author's first Pros story, so it's understandable perhaps, but... I wish she hadn't! And there's something about sentence/paragraph length that jittered at me too, so I'm not at all convinced that I want to keep on re-reading... That said, as mentioned above, there's alot of good points to the story too - so I'm not at all surprised I remember liking it well enough the first time around! I seem to get pickier on second-readings, these days! [11]

References

  1. review at the crack-van dated Sept 29, 2011.
  2. noblesentiments review dated March 2, 2008.
  3. comment in noblesentiments review dated March 2, 2008.
  4. comment in noblesentiments review dated March 2, 2008.
  5. comment in noblesentiments review dated March 2, 2008.
  6. 2010 comments at CI5hq; archive is
  7. 2010 comments at CI5hq
  8. 2010 comments at CI5hq
  9. 2010 comments at CI5hq
  10. 2010 comments at CI5hq
  11. 2010 comments at CI5hq