Chalk and Cheese/Issues 06-10

From Fanlore
Jump to: navigation, search
Related terms:
See also: Chalk and Cheese
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

Issue 6

cover of issue #6, Adrian Morgan
cover, photocopy, of issue #6

Chalk and Cheese 6 was published in July 1990 and contains 214 pages. It has art by TACS, Dian, Sheila Paulson, Karen Eaton, Rolaine, Suzan Lovett, Adrian Morgan (front cover).

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 6

[When All Else Fails]: A chilling tale about prejudice within CI5, and inside of Cowley. The portrait of Irene Doyle, Ray's mother, was priceless. [1]

Gorgeous cover by Adrian Morgan, fascinating Letters of Comment (more pleadings for DangerMouse crossovers from people in asylums, more complaints about the slash ratio from people who should be in asylums, more writers slagging each other), and a couple of pretty good stories by writers I was previously unfamiliar with. Chalk and Cheese 6 is worth hunting down -- especially for fans of hurt/comfort.

Lurk the Eyes of the Beast by Alyx and Alys: Cowley warns Bodie he must give up his promiscuous gay lifestyle. Then he sends Bodie and Doyle undercover as a gay couple which starts them both thinking....

Capably written bit.

A Pleasant Madness by Natasha Barry: She lost me at lounge singers on a cruise ship. This is one writer who consistently hits the wrong note for me. No pun intended.

Withering Heights by Natasha Barry: Probably one of the most unpleasant stories I've read. Bodie is in love with Doyle who is repulsed by the idea. Doyle marries Ann Holly, so Bodie also marries -- a woman he doesn't love -- and they are both moved down to the B Squad. That would be Doyle and Bodie, not Bodie and his wife. Thus follows years of frustration and bitterness with Doyle and Bodie trapped in a love-hate partnership until finally Ann dies. Then, for some inexplicable reason, Doyle decides he is sort of fond of Bodie after all.


Barry apparently had a love-hate relationship with the lads. Mostly hate. I can only hope she shared her particular gifts with other fandoms, because really, why us, God?

Over Sea and Land by Susan Douglass: Part IV in the Silent Lily universe. You know, the AU one where Doyle is Raimond, the mute and traumatized former whore in love with his childhood sweetheart the soldier of fortune (or misfortune) Guillaume. So...this week Guillaume (for a refreshing change of pace) is the one abducted and abused, and Raimond must come (ahem) to the rescue.

"Hold me. Just hold me."

Ugh. Shut up. Just shut up.

When All Else Fails... by Robin Goodfellow: This is an unexpectedly competent if rather sweet CI5-based story from a writer I was previously unfamiliar with.

Bodie and Doyle are already lovers. Doyle is injured on an op and his mum comes to stay with them. And here you thought she was conveniently dead! Meanwhile, Cowley begins to suspect that there is something more between his top team than friendship and respect. He begins snooping around. Doyle's mum gives that Mr. Cowley a stern talking to.

Scads of hurt/comfort here. Realistic concerns are handled thoughtfully, but there's a bit too much of Super Mum, and Doyle comes off like a dreadful mama's boy.

"Now that his mother was here nothing seemed quite as horrific as it had earlier."

Sound of JGL's jaw hitting floor.

At another point Mum smacks Ray's face for smarting off to her.

Despite all this, it's not a bad little story, and perhaps there was an earlier fic which would have put some of this into perspective. Anyway, mostly I liked it.

Ashes by Marica Brin: Cowley commits suicide. Maybe he read Shades to Blossom in the previous issue.

Lying in the Dark by Cybel Harper: While Bodie is on holiday, Doyle is seriously injured falling in an abandoned warehouse. As he loses consciousness he regrets that he never had a chance to tell Bodie how he really feels.

While searching desperately for his missing partner, Bodie comes to realize just how much he cares about him.

Now that we've got that settled!

Bodie scours London, finds Doyle, saves him and then takes his convalescent partner home with him. They slowly realize their feelings are mutual. Hey, they're not detectives, you know. It takes them a little while.

This is another sweet, simple, and mostly competent (although the writer over explains just about everything) story with lots of hurt/comfort. There is some strange use of "dinnits" and some even stranger fluttering insecurity over looks and general self-doubts as well as the ever-popular Does He or Doesn't He?

Darts to You by Debra Hicks: Eeek! It's a DangerMouse crossover!

Dirty Nappies by Terence: Good God Almighty. Was smoking crack part of the preparation ritual for these venerable Pros writers?

(seventh] in the Curtains, Cuddles and Cats universe. Twenty something pages of first person Doyle eaten alive with jealousy and insecurity when Bodie has to baby sit his nephew. What a darned shame this series wasn't...erm, conceived in the days of mpreg, eh?

Without fail the POV character in this universe -- no matter whether named Doyle and Bodie -- is always a GIRL. And not a very tough girl.

But apparently popular as all get out, so what do I know?

Talk is Cheap by Sue Wells: Ray has an expensive and unfortunate encounter with a talking Coke vending machine. Yes, it's a nail-biting encounter with an over-carbonated Hal!

Well, what the hell else are gen authors going to write about?

What's in a Name by Sue Wells: Bodie and Doyle try anything to figure out Murphy's first name.'s gen. Sophisticated themes or complex philosophical questions need not apply.

In conclusion -- and despite all -- if I were to recommend buying a single Chalk and Cheese, C&C 6 is the issue I'd suggest. [2]

[zine]: First things first: The cover is fantastic. Adrian has done a super job as always. It makes me want to reach out and touch [too bad they're only paper].

I like Karen's cartoons. Where does she continue to come up with such ideas? The limericks by Khrystyna also brought out the giggles.

I enjoyed Terence's "Dirty Nappies". It certainly showed the boys in a different light.

And I absolutely love "When All Else Fails" by Robin Goodfellow. I hope we see more. How about Mrs. Doyle coming down to see Cowley and Bodie gets hurt?

My favorite stories, though, are the two by Sue Wells: "Talk is Cheap" and "What's in a Name?" The lengths Bodie and Doyle will go to try and con their way out of trouble and the amount of time they spent investigating poor Murphy's name. In fact, Murphy came out on the short end of both stories. Gee, Sue, I thought you liked Murphy.[3]

[zine]: Chalk and Cheese 6 was just as fantastic as the other five. You gather such a diverse selection of writers and artists, and then blend them together with top-notch editing and style to make each issue special.

I enjoy reading stories from favorite writers, as well as new ones. I also like the balance of "/" and non-"/", too.

Terence's continuing stories in the 'Building to Last' universe are always looked forward to. "Dirty Nappies" was a tender and funny story. I really liked this one.

My favorite story in #6, however, was "Talk is Cheap" by Sue Wells. It is so funny. I can just picture Ray Doyle attacking that talking Coke machine.

There were two stories that were very thought-provoking. "Withering Heights" and "A Pleasant Madness," both by Natasha Barry. Natasha has cast Bodie in a different light than most writers. He seems to be obsessed with Doyle in a not very healthy manner. I don't agree with this view, but I did enjoy the stories. I did like the part where Bodie wanted to kill the guy who had beaten up Ray and broken his cheekbone. I can see that.

My next favorite story was "Shock Value" by Linda Terrell. This story reveals the closeness, the oneness of the partners, without all the "/" overtones. I really liked it.

"When All Else Falls" by Robin Goodfellow was a well-thought out story. The writer didn't hurt Ray just to get him into bed with Bodie, as some writers do. They were already lovers. I liked the way Robin brought in Doyle's mother, Irene. I really liked her. It was an interesting curve to get her and Cowley together, if only briefly. This was a great story.

Of the poetry, "Ashes" by Marcia Brin was the best. A very moving, heartfelt poem.

The cover art by Adrian Morgan was beautiful. TACS' illustrations were fantastic, especially Doyle on pages 36 and 136, and Bodie on pages 32 and 157.

A great zine, Mysti. Keep up the good work.[4]

[zine]: Chalk and Cheese 6 had some good work. "Withering Heights" was disturbing, but an interesting alternative. Bodie was always a patient hunter.

"Chasing Rain" is okay, but those last two lines are wonderful.

I loved "When All Else Fails..." and I'll bet every female reader envied Irene Doyle her cuddling of Bodie. Cowley's reaction was very believable in his ambivalence.

"Darts to You" was hysterical, especially the scene where all the communicators went off. I could just hear/see it! [4]

[zine]: "The Lily and the Rose" was only the second Pros story I had ever written and I'm sure it is full of technical faults. The vagueness of the background and particular settings (i.e. what country?) was correctly pointed out. I hope I have cleared up some of this in subsequent stories in the series... But I have never claimed that the characters in the 'Silent Lily' series were actually Bodie and Doyle. They are characters inspired by the series and based (perhaps rather loosely) on Bodie and Doyle. I gather from some of the comments that some fans object to the printing of such A/U stories as "The Lily and the Rose" because they "aren't really Professionals stories." My response is the following: fans who don't like A/U stories as a matter of principle don't have to read them. I, myself, enjoy the imaginative wanderings of a well-written A/U story. As a fantasy/SF writer and reader, I always enjoy the concept of "What If?" and I like Bodie-and-Doyle-based characters in varied settings. Mysti, I am grateful that you are willing to print all types of Pros stories....

Cover: I loved it! Adrian, as usual, you did magnificent work. Especially the green and blue eyes...

"Lying in the Dark": This story was hopelessly mushy and slushy--and I loved it! The part where Ray is looking at himself in the mirror, believing himself to be ugly (probably a result of his abusive childhood) was heartrending. And Bodie's wonderful response was so comforting. S-i-g-h!

"Talk Is Cheap": This started out nicely--the bit with Doyle kicking the Coke machine was great. But the story didn't really go anywhere after that.

"Withering Heights": I realize that this was based on Wuthering Heights, but I found this Bodie to be quite insensitive. The whole device didn't quite work with me. Probably because the original Wuthering Heights is a novel; this story read like a novel in 12 pages--too much crammed into too little space.

"Shock Value": I'm very happy that this isn't one of the trash-Ann-Holly stories. Ann had her reasons to leave Ray. As Bodie realized, Ann didn't dump Ray per se, she dumped CI5. I really didn't blame her. But then there is a problem: out of the blue, Bodie and Doyle find themselves attracted to each other when they have never been attracted to men before--or if they have, the author has not filled us in on any details about it. I almost got the feeling of "they're not really gay, they just love each other." Knowing the author's views on this, I don't think this was at all her intention. Just a little more background on Bodie's and Doyle's gay feelings and experiences would have helped greatly. Other than that, the dialogue was sharp and the description of body-language was excellent. Just a matter of pure taste: I prefer a little bit more romance and a bit fewer clever exchanges (although the clever exchanges are in character and occur on the show). I think that the main problem with this was that the story was too short. It cut itself off just when the possibility of a relationship and the direction it was taking was getting interesting.

"Dirty Nappies": Like all the 'Building to Last' stories, this one is excellent. Somehow, Bodie's maternal feelings are right in character, at least to me. Poor Doyle! Underneath his unpleasant family memories of kids and dirty diapers, a 'mother' dwells as well. In some ways, I was almost disappointed to see Cheryl reappear and claim the baby. I'd like to see a story where Bodie and Doyle raise a child of their own.

"When All Else Fails": This story is superb. I was gripped in its spell the whole way through. The story is a bit dark in that it deals with homophobia within CI5's ranks, and within Cowley (although I can see another view of Cowley where his hatred of all bigotry includes hatred of homophobia). Too often, stories show a disproportionately large percentage of CI5 as being gay. I don't think that CI5 would be an organization which would normally draw gay men or lesbians to its ranks. They would exist within CI5, but in roughly the same percent as in the general population (about 10%). At any rate, I found the story-portrait of Irene Doyle in "When All Else Fails" to be stunningly drawn.

"A Pleasant Madness": This began as an interesting triangle story, but one of my biggest irritants is a viewpoint which bounces from one character to another from sentence to sentence. This happened frequently in this story, and It distracted me. What happens is that I really can't get 'Into' the characters. I'm beginning to get a feeling for Bodie when suddenly the viewpoint is Doyle's.

I have problems with Bodie's characterization: he was angry at the idea of Doyle sleeping with other men, although he thinks it was okay to sleep with women (I guess they didn't really count in his mind). But then he inexplicably engaged Taylor in a relationship—the same man who had attacked Doyle years before. I found this incredibly insensitive on Bodie's part, and I didn't follow his motivations. It seemed out of character. And personally, this Bodie's obsessive possessiveness bothered me a lot. I just can't see Doyle (or anyone else, for that matter) being attracted to a person like that.

One other thing: the author clearly shows that Bodie is attracted to men as well as women, and this is realistic. But what about Doyle? Is he one of these completely hetero men who suddenly is attracted to a guy? Doyle has to read a book to find out about same-sex love--but he is instantly bisexual, or perhaps it's just for Bodie. I don't find it believable. In sum, this story had a lot of possibilities. I liked the idea of it taking place on a cruise ship. I much prefer the intricate plotting to a short, cutesy story. But technical problems and unexplained motivations got in the way. I hope the author considers these comments and doesn't get too discouraged by them. Believe me, I've gotten my share of critiquing, even right here in the pages of Chalk and Cheese. Keep writing!...wanted to see a Doyle who, unbeknownst to Bodie, is also gay--who perhaps hangs out in different bars so Bodie knows nothing of it. 1 just don't believe in instant bisexuality.

"What's in a Name?": A cute little Murphy story, but it ends too soon. I would have liked to have seen Murphy's reaction if he really did know that Bodie and Doyle have found out his first names.

All in all,' this issue was T-H-I-C-K and very enjoyable. Looking forward to the next one.[4]

[zine]: Issue 6 is really nice. I loved the cover (those blue eyes were to die for!) and every story was at least competent. (Maybe I should be more enthusiastic. Competent is pretty dry for most people, so how about interesting, fascinating and unique?)

Sue Wells' "Talk is Cheap" was wonderfully fun. I'd forgotten all about those talking Coke machines. We used to have one on campus and they were extremely obnoxious. It got what it deserved.

With Linda Terrell's "Shock Value," something weird happened. I spent so much time 'oohing' and 'ahhing' over the phrasing and style, that I stopped reading the story! Really, honest-to-God, it's true. The line that stopped me was "Eyes locked as lapis met malachite..." It's a great phrase, but so different that I kept mulling it over. I may steal the analogy myself.

I also adored "...dreamed of hazy lays and hard fucks...and mixed doubles." Beautifully put.

"Darts to You"--well, I always read Dangermouse first. I haven't been disappointed yet.

"Dirty Nappies"--Terence's 'Building to Last' universe is growing on me. Bodie and Doyle are so sweet, yet realistic. The whole thing has a refreshing lack of violence and still holds my attention. A different type of A/U.

"Over Sea and Land"--I haven't read any of the other 'Silent Lily' stories, so I really appreciated the "What has gone before" piece, yet I know you can't have flashbacks in every story. The sense of equality in this one was a bit distracting. I never really believed that Guillaume was in jeopardy... Rather, I knew that Raimond would show up in the nick of tine to save him. I'm not sure Katrin should have backed off the way she did. It's kind of like in Die Hard 2: Bruce Willis couldn't save the first plane. We had to see other people die to believe that a real danger existed. Well, I never saw the people die in "Over Sea and Land."

On a final note, I've always adored Karen Eaton's cartoons. They're the second thing I look for after Dangermouse.[4]

[zine]: I received Chalk and Cheese 6 in the mail. It's a beautiful job. Please keep it up.

I'd like to thank everyone who's used their LoC to comment on my 'Building to Last' stories. Positive comments tend to make my head swell for a few days (and keep me encouraged to continue writing). Criticism, be it negative or neutral, helps me with my attempts to improve my writing. Please keep those cards and letters coming. No matter what you want to say, I want to hear it.

It's a good think the cover is behind plastic, otherwise the drool would warp the artwork. Adrian Morgan's B&D are gorgeous.

Speaking of artwork: my favorites in C&C6 are the cover; Suzan Lovett's illo (I saw the original at CaliCon 2--would I'd had the cash to bid on it); and all of TACS' Doyles, but particularly the one on page 136. As usual, Karen Eaton's cartoons totally cracked me up--especially the Smurph 'undercover.'

As usual, the layout is excellent. The print is beautifully clear.

Khrystyna's limericks were a hoot. Cybel Harper catches Bodie's voice veil. My favorite poem, however, was Marcia Brin's "Ashes." In a few lines, she catches what Bodie must have been thinking about after 'Operation Susie.' Debra Hicks was hilarious (as usual) in "Darts to You." Now we all know that mice do get drunk.

I really loved "When All Else Fails..." by Robin Goodfellow. It had a fine, loving relationship between the boys and did a great job of showing a more likely reaction on Cowley's part than is usual in B/D. I also liked Irene very much and am intrigued by the developing relationship between her and the Cow.

I'm glad Susan Douglass let Raimond rescue Guillaume in this installment of 'Silent Lily.' Also, it was nice to see that they've worked out several ways for them to communicate--or for Raimond to communicate.

Most of the rest of C&C6's fiction was a bit frustrating for me. There were so many really good beginnings of the B/D relationship--Harper's "Lying in the Dark," Alyx and Alys' "Lurk the Eyes of a Beast," Natasha Barry's "A Pleasant Madness" and Linda Terrell's "Shock Value." But I felt a bit like the fellow who was being courted and teased all night only to have the flirt turn puritanical at the last moment and leave me flat, with his balls tied in knots.

I WANT TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS NEXT! Please, folks! Let's see some sequels so I know whether there's a happy ending or not. Basically, I'm a romantic voyeur at heart. That's why my fiction is a bit fluffy and sentimental. Also why it's usually got a lot of sex in it.

Not that I don't like unhappy endings sometimes, or death stories. Some of the best B/D I've read has been sad. I just like completions, and some of the stories in this issue just ended a bit abruptly or didn't go as far as I'd liked. to have seen them go.

And I do apologize to Linda Terrell. She's right about "Assault and Battery." It does read like the middle part of a trilogy. However, I wrote it to set up a few things in the series, and as a transition piece, so in essence, it is the middle part of something.[4]

[zine]: This is a letter of comment--of praise, in fact--on an aspect of Chalk and Cheese 6 that I'll bet you never thought you'd get a letter about: the LoC section.

Your editorial comments and interpolations are very well done. You don't interrupt or criticize the letters, but you answer questions, give more information where appropriate, and create a real sense of dialogue between yourself and readers. Telling fans of a particular author or series that they can find more stories in the next issue may be a blatant plug, but it's also helpful info. I particularly appreciated it when you added a parenthetical note to an LoC's mention of a story to help readers identify it, as in Janet Nopper's letter when you noted that "House of the Rising Sun" was by LST, or in Geraldlne Stout's letter when you located for readers the phrase "the room that time forgot" which she was commenting on.

Please continue printing LoCs and answering them so well. Having read a few zines where editors leave simple questions unanswered, give no indication that they've heard suggestions, and even berate the letter-writer for her opinion, I can say that reading your LoC section was a real pleasure....

Gee, I suppose I should comment on the rest of the zine as long as I'm here. #5 was the best so far, in my opinion, though #4 might give it a run for its money. Linda Terrell's "Leap Year" had wonderful dialogue and had me laughing out loud, and I've only seen one episode of "Quantum Leap" and I didn't like it!

"People Bending Broken Rules" was complex and well-written, and Suzie's illo of B&D on page 87 was one of the sweetest, most heart-wrenching I've ever seen.

"Trial Run," though thoroughly unoriginal, was one of the best-done stories of its type, and long enough to allow the characters to work through their problems with something approaching realism. Both in this story and in Ellis' "And Memories Die, part II"... I kept hoping that she would not try to tie up all the ends too quickly, and both times, she didn't. Thank you for giving them, and us, time, Ellis.

Terence's "Assault and Battery" was the best story in the zine, which was no surprise as I've been an eager reader of the 'Building to Last' series. Murphy and Chris' relationship is quite as interesting as Bodie and Doyle's. I'd be interested to see the four of them go out to the gay discos; Murphy and Chris could show Bodie and Doyle around, and if Bodie won't dance with Ray, I bet one of the others will... And many thanks to Terence for dealing realistically with bisexual characters; Bodie and Doyle are the standard slash 'no other man but you,' but Chris and Murphy ring true.[4]

[zine]: C&C6 is right up there with the best of zines--and there are, unfortunately, precious few that deserve that accolade. Layout, readability, range of material, artwork and reproduction quality are excellent overall. How you manage to put out such a notable effort more than once in a lifetime is beyond me. My most sincere thanks that you do....

Before I go on to specific comments on stories and artwork, I must pass on an anecdote involving the centaur Bodie by TAGS on page 11: I ran off a copy of the LoCs for my friend in England. While she was reading through the letters on the train into London, a woman came and sat beside her. Ann continued to read, noticing that the woman was paying a great deal of attention to TACS' drawing, so she inconspicuously bent the pages around so the drawing would not be so obvious. Either the woman had taken offense, or she was a little worried about the subject matter of Ann's reading material, because she promptly rose and moved to a seat some distance away--and remained there for the rest of the journey. In all likelihood, since B&D's recognition factor is so high in England, the woman probably recognized Bodie's features, and wondered agog at just what he was doing being juxtaposed to that lovely centaur body! "Lying In the Dark" by Cybel Harper was a nice little story, starting out as h/c and gently but inexorably working its way to slash. A very pleasant read.

"Talk is Cheap" and "what's in a Name?" by Sue Wells were both amusing, although I was somewhat disappointed in Doyle's wholesale vandalism of the obstreperous Coke machine; not that I don't recognize the provocation, mind. In the latter story, Bodie's silly determination to uncover Murphy's given names was quite true to the character as he often appeared in the series.

"Withering Heights" by Natasha Barry--I know I'm thick, but the title did not register, and so this story put me right off when I read it through. Interesting concept, which gives new meaning to alternate universe stories. To be quite frank, .1 didn't enjoy it much, because Bodie and Doyle generally lose their appeal for me anytime their more obnoxious characteristics are made predominant. Still, it was written well enough to hold me to the last sentence, and that's more than I can say about some innocuous stories that have lost me because they weren't.

"Shock Value" by Linda Terrell was a curious piece, mainly because these people simply don't read much like Bodie and Doyle to me. For that matter, they don't sound like them, they don't act like them, and I venture to say, they don't think like them, either. Doyle is depicted as a whinging self-centered hedonist--an image I've seen far more of in fanfic than in the series itself. Bodie, of course, is endlessly patient, even when Doyle is making a real ass of himself--again, more frequently seen in fanfic than the series. I find it difficult, given Doyle's views of prostitutes early on in the series, that he would purchase the services of one himself. He seemed to have a grudging sympathy for women who sell themselves, and understanding their plight would hardly lead to complicity. Not to mention the fact that it paints Doyle an even more insensitive little bugger for wanting a "good hard fuck" in the wake of presumably wrenching heartache--a rather pathetic view of male mentality in general, and in my opinion, Doyle in particular. Overall the dialogue made excessive use of what I call "set-up language," in which everything builds to an eventual punchline(s), without any effort expended to match the cadence or style of the characters' speech to make such dialogue believable. The topper came with B&D gleefully heading to the shower to work off a little tension in the timeless manner of j.o. (-Jerk off-) buddies everywhere; a rather strange denouement in light of their strictly macho dealings prior: "That's not a hug--that's entwining." I guess I'd have believed "You give great hug" (a lovely line) coming out of Starsky & Hutch Starsky or Hutch's]] mouth far more readily than this Doyle's.

"Dirty Nappies" by Terence--This, so far, is my favorite of the 'Building to Last' series. The pitfalls that befell our boys herein exposed some serious home truths; I've been there. Some of it was rather pat; to whit: the conversation in the pub with the inordinately understanding spouse who gives Doyle the necessary insight Into his one-sided resentment toward being replaced in Bodie's affections by Bodie's sister's baby; and of course the deus ex machina solving of the baby problem altogether at the end. The confrontation between Bodie and Doyle when Doyle finally takes himself home after the pub scene struck me as being out of character--Bodie being remarkably over-emotional and Doyle uncommonly anyway; just as it Is when Bodie is renamed "Will" by Doyle. I know; that's a personal hang-up on my part.

"Over Sea and Land" by Susan Douglass was my pick of this series, too. A nicely written tale, in which Guillaume suffers the ignominy of bondage to give him some comprehension of what Raimond went through in his travails, works for me because Guillaume, while threatened, does not have to trade his sexual favors in order to survive. It could certainly have come to that, but since we've already seen Raimond put through the mill, why degrade Guillaume as well? I'm glad Susan resisted the temptation of that particular device, when so many fans do not, and was especially pleased when Raimond came to the rescue. Thank you.

"When All Else Fails..." by Robin Goodfellow--Lovely scenario, ably written, with some especially interesting characterizations (Cowley and Mrs. Doyle). This Bodie and Doyle are softer than I expect them to be; but I love stories in which Bodie must deal with Doyle's mum, and in which B&D must cope with a Cowley who does not condone their sexual relationship. It suffers a bit from the "macho gay vs. limp-wristed gay" syndrome which is almost as bad as the "we're not gay, we're only queer for each other" conundrum; but that aspect of the story is relatively unobtrusive.

"Lurk the Eyes of a Beast" by Alys and Alyx was very nicely done; the only other gay Bodie I've seen so believably rendered is in the Jane Carnall series of B/C stories. Please, oh, please provide a sequel to this. I, for one, would very much like to know where Doyle's ruminations take him. Indulgent while being taken to task. But those are niggling comments, believe it or not; I enjoyed this story a great deal. Major complaint is the use of names such as Cher as a diminutive or nickname for Cheryl: I find that distracting and a bit cutesy. It may have been intentional as it would certainly have suited the character's mentality, but it's distracting.

"Darts to You" by Debra Hicks was wonderful, as always. This particular segment in the Dangermouse series was better than some of the others, I thought, and I couldn't tell you precisely why I thought it was better. The wit was good-natured, the writing flowed, Bodie was as classically bemused and exasperated as ever--and I loved the "hard man" quotes he kept delivering.

"A Pleasant Madness" by Natasha Barry was the antithesis of her "Withering Heights." I quite liked this story for several reasons. It is well written, interestingly so, and explores some of the themes more bombastically handled in "Withering Heights"--Bodie's possessiveness, Doyle's instinctive resistance to being coddled or protected, and the very real consanguinity of the two of them. It put me off at first that Bodie would go to bed with the man who had bashed Ray's face in years ago--I'd sooner expect him to surreptitiously arrange Taylor's untimely demise. The argument given Is that Bodie always took Ray's girls (from the series it was actually the other way round, for the most part); but then, none of Ray's girls beat him senseless for refusing her. Still, it made for a lovely confrontation scene with Doyle being badly hurt and, accordingly, distancing himself from Bodie--which, of course, brought Bodie up sharp. It reminded me of "Masquerade" and "Bareheaded in the Rain" in many ways and for various reasons.

The art in C&C6 was great, as always. TACS is developing as one of the finest artists in Pros fandom (and undoubtedly whichever other fandoms she illustrates for). Her Bodies have always been exemplary, but her Doyles are among the absolute best these days. He's a problem child for most artists, who either make him too soft with a hint of edge, or too hard with a hint of soft--when they get the proportions right. Personally, I see him as very rough-hewn with an incredibly charismatic patina--or at least the potential for it; he can also be, single-handedly, one of the ugliest people I've ever seen. Somehow TACS has developed the knack of capturing this quicksilver ambivalence. The cover by Adrian was lovely. He is evolving a very distinctive style, which is growing more sophisticated by the day. Suzi's illustration was fantastic, as always. Doyle is wonderfully erotic without being in the least bit explicit, and Bodie evokes a touching sense of poignance and yearning that I suspect would be difficult to equal. And Sheila Paulson produced one of the finest Cowleys I've ever seen; her other drawings being quite nicely done, as well.

In closing, I'd like to add my two cents regarding the A/U controversy, as some people have presented quite intractable views regarding this aspect of Pros fandom. The argument, as I understand it, is that A/U has no place in B&D fanfic - at least under the names Pros or B&D, while overlooking the fact that A/Us are as much a long-standing mainstay of Pros fanfic as so-called "regular" fanfic. In all honesty I was resistant to such stories when first stumbling upon Pros--even when one of my earliest and most cherished reads was "Rediscovered In a Graveyard" (-also available from the Professionals Library-). I may not have deemed this magnificent story A/U because it was effectively counterbalanced with an alternate plotline that featured our contemporary heroes, as well. Yet, it probably paved the way, for once I ran out of longer strictly Pros stories, I started to venture into A/Us--and have been fascinated ever since by how well they work utilizing these characters. To say that no "Pros" zine should publish A/Us because they are not really, Pros is absurd--all fanfic is A/U, simply because none of it appeared in the series (or canon, as some fans like to refer to it). There are those who say straight fanfic is acceptable Pros (not A/U), but everything encompassing slash and overtly A/U stories is not. Certainly, such sub-genres will not appeal to everyone, but to exclude them by that reasoning is deplorable. I find it extremely irritating and highhanded that anyone should summarily proscribe what or what not Pros zines should incorporate in their contents. Sure, we've all been burned by purchasing a zine in which the longest story is one we absolutely detest; as far as I'm concerned that's the luck of the bloody draw, bitch though 1 may at the time. My admiration goes to editors like Kate Nuernberg and Mysti Frank because their zines are as catholic in their contents as fandom is in its composition of widely diverse individuals. They don't cater to single-minded individuals who must know what is slash/death/Mary Sue and/or straight (explicit or otherwise)/A/U before they will plunk their hard earned dollars on the table. They let the reader decide if s/he will forge through any given story, and that is as it should be; else, what is the point of having one's own mind, eh? [4]

[zine]: First, a comment on Linda Willard's somewhat bewildering comments. First she says that I have "an annoying tendency to assume an arch tone now and again that I find rather off-putting." Then, in the next paragraph, commenting on Hicks' Pros/UNCLE crossover, she says, "...although having both couples undergo virtually concurrent romantic epiphanies created a degree of redundancy." Yet, I assume an arch tone? This does not compute.

"Lying in the Dark"--I fear I found this derivative. This fandom's fiction is just too full of Doyle missing/near death; Bodie finds/they find each other. Strictly personal preference here.

"Talk is Cheap" -- nice vignette. I like little bits that bring out a human side of Cowley, even if indirectly.

"Withering Heights"--uh, oh, here I go again. This story is far too short for its premise. I mean, it's covering 20-30 years and most all we get is expository telling us that Ann is back, they suddenly marry, Ray and Ann have a child, Bodie suddenly marries to "get even," he and Cathy have a child, the two couples rarely meet; Bodie beats Cathy and drinks too much; Ann dies; Cathy leaves Bodie; the two children prepare to marry, Bodie and Doyle find each other. Yeah, but what did they all £o during these years? I would like to have seen some actual scenes between them--some dialogue; some motivation.

"Dirty Nappies"--good choice of subject matter, lest we forget that gay couples have the same desires as straight couples. And very often, men want children for all the same reasons that women do--to love, to rear, to stamp with a little piece of themselves. But Terence carries this another step--and we see the often all-too-classic trap that couples get into with children: one gets lost in the children to the detriment of the partner. To see it from the POV of two males makes it that ouch more striking. And that it is Bodie who gets carried away with mothering is a fine touch--and apt, since I can see just that. I'm not sure if Raven was presented as quite jealous enough of the baby. I have 3 cats who would have total snits--the alpha cat, in particular, when he's put out, beats up on the other two, then beats up on us!

"When All Else Fails..." started dangerously like the usual Doyle hurt/ Bodie comforts/B&D find each other. But the addition of Doyle's mother, Irene, was an inspired stroke. Having her, urn, "dating" Cowley was delightful. Very much a "today" woman even though she was brought up "yesterday." Love how she mothered Bodie--I really needed that.

"A Pleasant Madness"*-lounge singers on a cruise ship! Didn't I see something like this on a Starsky and Hutch? Ah, well, I like stories when Bodie's gone goofy over Ray but can't show it; when Bodie is rampantly possessive and Ray seems oblivious. Heh heh. Love the Lovett illo, yum.

To Ye Ed~-many thanx for the LoCs, It's all we authors ever really get in feedback. I like the ego-boo and can cope even with ego-bash. And thanx for the color covers....

Janet Walker--AIDS testing is not "just one more piece of lab work." I am a lab technologist specializing in clinical chemistry and, in this country, at least, you have to have a signed consent form before an AIDS test can be performed. There are laws against doing It willy nilly and on anyone's command but the patient's. Counsel must be ready if the test is positive; and the confidentiality laws are almost virtually hermetically sealed--though not enough for my comfort.

Sue Wells--I wrote the artistic process as I did in "Last Few Feet" because I am a frustrated painter myself. In fact, I gave up painting because all too often I simply could not get a vision onto canvas. So now I'm a photographer specializing in romantic photos of carousels.[4]
[zine]: This zine was everything I'd come to expect quality-wise and more! It was a truly good read from cover (and what a gorgeous color cover It was, too!) to cover.

As I've mentioned to many of my close friends, I never was into the poetry aspect of fan fiction, but something in the poetry from this fandom touches me. You seem to have latched on to some of the best poetry writers in the fandom.

There are also three on-going series which have really caught my eye: the first is Debra Hicks' Dangermouse crossovers. I will admit to a bit of skepticism about these before I started reading them, but no more. In fact, the illo on page 176 of DM with his rather unusual ice pack darn near did me in with hysterics! I love the humor and the rapport that had developed between the principal characters so far.

Debra is also responsible for some of the best Pros/UNCLE stories I've ever seen. I'm an UNCLE fan from when the series was originally broadcast and her characterizations of Napoleon and Illya really hit the mark! Needless to say, I'd love to see much more of her stuff from both series.

The other one is Terence's 'Building to Last' series. There have been quite a few times that I've been feeling emotionally under the weather and picked up one of these stories to have a giggle and perk myself up. I swear she must have had the same cats I did when I was a kid (or are all moggies like that?). It's also nice to see the way she's developing not only Ray and Bodie's relationship, but Murph and Chris' as well. More, please! [4]

Issue 7

cover of issue #7, Dani Lane

Chalk and Cheese 7 was published in November 1990 and contains 217 pages. It won a Fan Q Award in 1991. Art by Dani Lane (front cover), DLF, Nina Boal, Suzie Molnar, Karen Eaton, and Daphne Hamilton.

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 7

See reactions and reviews for Echo.
[zine]: Art, f!rst--your covers have never disappointed me. I waffle between B&D, so whoever is on the cover, he's my favorite. Dani did a marvelous job on Cowley. She is getting so good and has improved so much since I've been cognizant of her work. Karen's cartoons are, as usual, mah-vel-lous, darling. But I don't understand why Ray is glowering at Bodie on pg. 119. Nothing in the story suggests that. Did she have some other story in mind when she did it? Inquiring minds want to know....

Daphne's treatment of BSD is different (and should be, considering the story. See more later.). The more I go back and look at the three, the more I like them. I'm hoping to see the originals at MediaWest. Daphne has joined the group of people. I sincerely wish I was talented enuff to belong. Multi-talented--that is, write, draw, and nice. That is a triple threat. Her treatments of B&D and Asper are terrific, but pg. 132 is the best. (It's also a sneaky way of getting a fire lizard into space. Even if it does have four eyes. Geneticelly transferred mutation?) Stories--"Hot Enough of Each Other"--0kay as far as it goes. It's a good beginning at sorting out their relationship; needs some follow-up... "Attitudes"--liked the crossover (so sue me, I like crossovers, even bad ones, which this isn't), but I don't think either Michael or KITT would play with emotions the way they are portrayed unless Michael was trying to entice someone into bed. (Have you seen any "/" with "Knight Rider"? With Devon? Spare me.)... At least this is brought out with Jason's outrage, and their subsequent conversetions. Again, a good beginning as far as it goes. "Lengthening Shadows"-- an interesting premise, but I don't know that I agree with Ray being able to make it with any man after his uncle did him for so long. The ending holds together better than the beginning, if that makes any sense at all. What I did appreciate above all else in this story was the small but telling mention of condoms when Ray was cruising. Good show! "They Shall Know War"--I enjoyed this crossover. Debra obviously is an Ironhorse fan, because she's caught him neatly. The story is good and I'm going to enjoy reading it again. And I look forward to more crossovers from her.... "Seeking Justice"--Sets up "Wild Justice" beautifully. Does much to explain his actions and behaviour. "Tell a Woman"--I loved Julia. How could one family produce such different siblings? Terence got under her skin. I wonder how much was "made up" and how much was based on experience. Thank you, Terence, I'm anticipating many more... I'm not a big poetry fan; most of the time I cannot make any connection with it, nor can I appreciate what the author is trying to say, but Khrystyna got me this time, I ached for her protagonist in "Silent Support." Is this a new character in Cowley's mob in her universe? Or her cry for understanding for all the hearing impaired? Whatever, she deftly made her point.... "Echo"--what can I say? This could have been expanded into a zine of its own. I think there is more than enough left to be said in just this time frame to allow expansion. If not that, then more in this universe. Asper is a gem. They have to get him a mate. It is a him, right? On pg. 126, Bodie finds Asper "hunkered down ... tiny muzzle buried up to its four beady eyes in thick curls." Please pass along to Daphne I'd dearly love to see this.... Would make a good companion piece to Kate Nuemburg's Ray and Twit. (The kitten from 'Mr. Doyle's Neighborhood' in British Takeaway.) One nit to pick with "Echo." I found the Briticisms jarring. "Nosey parker," "sod off," etc. These are not the Pros' Bodie and Doyle and they are definitely not from Britain. This is a space opera A/U loosely based on our B&D.

One other note, in case you're keeping score about A/Us. I'm all in favor. It broadens the possibilities of B&D stories without having to keep exactly within the narrow scope of the TV show, as long as their characters are not changed too broadly, or as long as Ray is not made out to be a wimp needing to be protected by Bodie. Ray may be a tad shorter, and is definitely lighter, but unless injured, does not need Bodie to protect him.[5]
[zine]: Your LoC section is great; it is very satisfying to read other people's opinions of the stories, and even when I don't agree with them, I almost always find something worthwhile to think about in them.

I have found myself eagerly awaiting the next installment of several of the serials and crossovers. I absolutely adore Terence's "Building to Last." universe. It has been fun getting to know this Bodie's and Doyle's families, and their continuing and growing commitment to each other (and to Raven) is just wonderful to read about. As for Debra's "Dangermouse" stories, when I read the first one, I didn't think I liked it at all. It seemed much too cutesy and not very interesting, well-written, but not my cup of tea. However, as I have read the others, I have found myself more and more intrigued by the characters of DM and Penfold, and I truly enjoy the counterpoint between the two sets of partners. The humor is great! (By the way, are DM and Penfold real characters, as in a TV show or something? If so, I have never met up with them before.)... And Debra's crossovers of Pros and Man From UNCLE are fantastic. I hope she will write some more of them. She does the characterizations so well, and the interrelations are exceptional...

"Echo" was a wonderful story. Of course, I have come to expect that from Ellis Ward. She makes all of her characters believable, and even when it's an A/U, they are true to the Bodie and Doyle we know and love. This is a great science fiction story, and the part where Bodie gave his essence to Doyle when he was near death, and the way Doyle cared for him made me cry. And it was so very well written, I could really see and feel the way Bodie saw and felt as he regained himself. And I loved the sfang. (I want one! A tame one, please.) [5]
[zine]: I've been following the Building to Last stories with a lot of interest. I like the way it's being worked out--the progression of the stories really reflects the series' title. I do wish the boys would do something about fixing Raven, though. I know, the latest story had Bodie going green at the mention of it, but maybe they could get Raven a kitty-vasectomy or something. I'm sure it's possible. Then they wouldn't be contributing to the animal overpopulation problem and Raven could still stay out all night having as much fun as ever. Ah, well, it's a minor quibble, anyway. I do enjoy the stories. I also enjoyed "Echo" a whole bunch. I knew it would be good as soon as I saw the author's name. I've not yet been disappointed by an Ellis Ward story. I found the future society (or what we saw of it) to be intriguing. I think it's a sign of good work when, after reading a story, one is left wanting to know more about the characters and their world. I was also very impressed by the way the author handled the "pre-verbal" Bodie. It was effective, affecting and had a clarity which must have been difficult to achieve. I mean, trying to convey in writing—in words--the thoughts and feelings of someone without words sounds impossible on the face of it, but it was very nicely done...[5]
[zine]: "Not Enough of the Other" by Stew was a wonderful 'what-if revolving around Mixed Doubles. I quite enjoy stories that incorporate actual episodes into a parallel plotline. Loved the way Stew handled the lads' repartee and the resultant consummation.

"Attitudes" by Linda Terrell had an interesting hook. Told in her usual self-conscious (and, to me, distracting) manner, it nevertheless was an entertaining interlude with a few enlightening moments. I don't believe for an instant, however, that Bodie would feel guilt over baiting a few gays--especially given his antipathetic attitude; but it was a nice point to make. And am I mistaken or was there a hint of we-may-not-be-gay-but-you're-looking-inighty-fine-in-those-jeans-Doyle? The by-play between Bodie and Doyle--and KlTT--was frequently amusing and very witty. But, my goodness, what a prurient little brute KITT is!

Given the Ray Doyle and William Bodie we know from the series, Susan Douglass' "Lengthening Shadows" is a little difficult to accept. Couldn't imagine Doyle's deep-seated problems not manifesting themselves earlier--and possibly, under far more dangerous circumstances. But the story is appealing for Bodie's transition from spurned lover to caring and supportive friend and lover, and Doyle's eventual understanding that it's time he got help.

Debra Hicks caught me again. Quite enjoyed "They Shall Know War." Was sitting in Stapleton Airport in Denver late one night in a really filthy snowstorm waiting for a friend to arrive while I read this. Not surprisingly, she managed to transport me to hot, jungle climes. Ironhorse is a great character, who works perfectly off Bodie; thanks to Debra, 1 can say that with only superficial knowledge of War of the Worlds. There was not enough Bodie and Doyle in this story to be totally to my liking, but it is quite nicely written all the same.

Sue Wells' "Seeking Justice" was a very good investigation into Bodie's thought processes prior to Wild Justice. She neatly set the stage for his actions in that episode. A lot of fans dismiss this episode outright, for Bodie's furtive obsessiveness and Doyle's callous abandonment of him, even though there are some great "partner" bits.

"Tell a Woman" by Terence was another lovely installment in the Building to Last universe. I get a kick out of the extended family that is being created here, not only amongst family, but friends as well. Terence ably reminds us all that the obstacles confronting lovers are not necessarily major ones like infidelity, financial problems or death--all those niggling little problems like brothers, sisters, moms and cats go a long way to making the simplest existence vastly complicated on occasion.

Dani's cover was great. She is not a "photographic" artist, but one who captures the essence of people. In her George Cowley one can see the weight of years and responsibility, the inherent dignity and pride, and underlying softness and concern. I do miss Gordon; we were lucky to know him as Cowley.

The rest of the artwork was uniformly interesting and appealing. Can imagine how you must scramble to commit such able artists on a regular basis.... Keep it up, please. The effort is most definitely appreciated.

So, that's what a sfang looks liket I pictured it as more of a combination of rodent/arachnid elements, but this is a lovely, lovely visualization. Some of Bodie's expressions were perfectly wrenching--and spot-on for illustrating those specific scenes in "Echo." [5]
[zine]: Just received my C&C7 and am enjoying it tremendously. I particularly liked "Echo." However, I do think Doyle should take his empathy in for its 1,000 mile checkup or whatever, because it behaves very erratically, not working when you'd normally think it would and vice-versa.... On the other hand, the social background was very well done and seems very well thought-out as opposed to just pretty scenery. I also admired "They Shall Know War," but that was a very mean thing to do to Cowley. The man will probably die of frustration.[5]

Chalk and Cheese 7 was wonderful I Be sure to let all your authors know how much they are appreciated by non-talented fen such as myself.

Linda Terrell did a terrific job in teaming our boys with my favorite car. Please tell her that I, for one, would greatly enjoy an encore (including Michael Knight or not, it doesn't really matter). I am a little confused about Linda's stories. Are they all supposed to stand alone, or are they part of the same universe? Sometimes it seems like she is building on previous stories, but it could just be my imagination.... She is very good at showing Bodie and Doyle reacting to strange situations with other people we know and love (or even those we know and hate). I can't wait to see who she brings into the next issue to interact with Bodie and Doyle.

Terence...what can I say? She is doing marvelous development in her Building to Last universe. I hope the mentions of Christmas visitors means that there will be a BtL story in The Hols of CI5... I really enjoyed 'meeting' some of Ray's family, especially since they were mentioned in a previous story.

Ellis Ward is rather long-winded, but I thoroughly enjoyed "Echo." It seemed to me that several of the components of the story were familiar. If you don't want specifics, please skip to the next paragraph. Asper bore a resemblance to a character in a series by Alan Dean Foster, one Pip by name, who is a flying, venomous, empathic creature. The situation of a free-trader and possible smuggler taking on a telepathic partner resembles (sort of) a series of stories in a K/S zine. I believe the idea of Gates between far-flung sectors of space was taken right from the Buck Rogers television show starring Gil Gerard. I want you and Ellis to understand that I am not picking at the story; I did enjoy it very much. I just want to know if these elements were lifted from those places. I'm curious.[5]
[zine]: C&C7 had two of my all time favorite stories in it and both for the same reason. I'm into sci-fi and the main fandom I belong to is War of the Worlds. I was ecstatic when I saw a WoW/Pros crossover by Debra Hicks. It was great! I hope you do more of them, Debra. The colonel and Bodie are birds of a feather, and Doyle could talk to Harrison about being vegetarian for days. Maybe the good doctor could teach Ray how to use a tuning fork to help with their cases--that would drive Bodie as crazy as it does Ironhorse.

The other story I really liked was "Echo." At first, I wasn't sure I wanted to read it. Some of the A/U Pros stuff is way out there. However, I am so glad I read this one. Ellis Ward should write more of their adventures in space. I really enjoyed the give and take in the relationship. Trust formed and shattered as neither wanted to be hurt by revealing true emotions. What good writing and very much in character. Sometimes slash goes a bit far in the sugar-sweetness of these two men. I can see them loving each other, but they are still the same dangerous type they have always been and they should keep the sparring, teasing relationship in good form, as well as becoming lovers. Ward did this perfectly. Oh, yeah--are you going to relate the reason for all of Bodie's names and why there are no pictures of him? I'd be interested in why this bloke--Cowley, was it?--had such an impact on the spacer's life. To reply to the criticism that "Shock Value" (-from C&C6-) is "incomplete" .,.well, the dang thing originally ended at "...And there was still Bodie." I added the rest when a certain editor whimpered that it "wasn't enough." Couldn't help myself--she does it so well! But you ain't gonna get any more of "Shock Value." I do not 'go all the way' with B&D. I prefer suggestion and innuendo. I either write an established relationship, approaching one, or the story is straight.

I do not do sequels. This fandom's fanfic is swash in sequels that should never have been written! Some terrific stories out there have been written to death, either by the author doing a sequel(s), or other authors doing their versions. I wish some of you would learn when to stop writing and leave a good story alone. No one will ever have my permission to do a sequel to any of my stories. Write someone else to death, thank you. As for not setting up the ending of "Shock Value" adequately--just a few paragraphs before the end I did detail how B&D occasionally engaged in a little mutal stroking in the shower. Earlier, Bodie has had dreams of "...hard fucks ...and mixed doubles," and later startles himself with a forbidden image which Doyle laters picks up on. If this isn't setting up, then it must be Twin Peaks. Geez, guyz. And that Doyle wouldn't act that bitterly re: prostitutes 'cause it was shown he has a kind of respect for them--it was for some of them. The Doyle in my story is pretty embittered. And if I didn't (arguably) describe Doyle, I described most men's reactions.

My word on A/U: I meant that I resent it being presented to me as Pros fiction. It isn't. 'Read this great Pros story!' I've been told, then found myself reading Wizards-and-Warriors, Sword-and-Sorcery, Dungeons-and-Dragons and elves, oh, my! That is not Pros, 'cause it is not B&D. "Not Enough of the Other"--was almost too much dialogue, which relied on the reader being intimately familiar with Pros in general and Mixed Doubles in particular. I was able to enjoy it, but I had to wonder how a neo would fare.

"Lengthening Shadows"--quite a change from Douglass' A/U writing, which tends to be overly stylized and often stops the flow for me. Her "canon" writing is much stronger and tighter and easier to read, although she still tosses out a tortured phrase such as "hidden visage." If it's hidden, it ain't a visage.

Unfortunately, I found "Shadows" derivative. 'Uncle Julian' is one of the more over-utilized scenarios, and not only in Pros fiction (though I will not deny it is, found in the real world). And the recurring-nightmare-driving-Doyle -from-Bodie scenario is so common as to be practically fan 'canon.'

The jump from third person to first person-absolutely-present was interesting, but tended to be jarring. I often found it difficult to get back into the story. Then, too, perhaps the author meant for us to be jarred.

"Tell a Woman"--I understand that this is by necessity a transition-type story in the on-going series, and I read it as such because there wasn't really much that I'd say was 'grabbing.' But there were fine moments: I especially appreciated Bodie's "Had Merc" routine with Doyle's brother. It's something the 'canon' Bodie would do). And the author took my 'straddling' scenario--now what am I gonna do with it?

But, please, speaking as a cat owner, neuter Raven and keep him in. Letting cats out to wander is the surest way to lose them. I presently own 3 ex-males; before that I owned a pair of Siamese for 18 years--and none of them ever go/went out! Oh, they may escape occasionally, but I never let them out and they don't miss anything. The folk tale that cats have to be let out is nonsense. So, please be kind to Raven, keep him in and give him a friend. Cats kept in and left alone often (as would happen with B&D's lifestyle) get on much better if they have another cat for company (and therein lies another tale...)

Terence handled "telling the secret" well. I mean, about all you can do is just tell them or not. Some accept it, some go round the bend. It helps to have a sturdy partner. And an understanding and loving family, when my brother-in-law announced he was gay, the family's reaction was, "So? Hey, you're my brother/son." No one is abandoned in that family.

"Seeking Justice"--one of the more plausible explanations as to why Doyle didn't seem to click on why Bodie was so distracted in Wild Justice. (Took Ray a while to catch on in Fall, Girl, too.) And why Doyle didn't appear to try to rein Bodie In or even try to reach him.

"Echo"--believe it or not, guyz, I enjoyed this A/U! why? It's science fiction, not elves and Middle Earth. It's "clank" science fiction and I love clank sci-fi! How, it wasn't B&D, so it wasn't Pros. Sorry, this Christmas tree just didn't have lights. But it had some great concepts and I adored the sfang. I'll add that to my list of wants along with fire lizards and cattails and tribbles. Like the use of the sfang and Vauxan empathic powers to bring B&D together--and they weren't in bed by page 4! Love it when it's built up for nearly half a story.

Personal gripes: story was a tadge too long. I think it might have been better had we not been told, in detail, relatively early on, of the connection between B&D. Just the previous hints heightened the anxiety adequately, I think. Kind of made the ending anti-climactic.

Only other bone of contention: sometimes Ellis Ward has a tendency to ignore a phrase when a Thesaurus will do. Makes me occasionally stumble.

"LoCs Section"--as entertaining a read as the rest of the zine! [5]
[zine]: Just finished reading C&C7. You have done it again! I loved the color cover by Dani. Can that lady draw or what?

The stories I liked best were "They Shall Know War" by Debra Hicks and "Seeking Justice" by Sue Wells.

I've never watched WoW, but nonetheless, I found the crossover with B&D fascinating. Debra did a wonderful job of blending the two shows without putting one or the other down. I especially enjoyed the flashback part where Bodie was telling Ray how Ironhorse was responsible for the scar on Bodie's shoulder. Very well done. Of course, I didn't quite understand the part when Dr. Blackwood took out the aliens, but I expect that's because I've never seen the show. Anyway, a top notch story.

"Seeking Justice," the prequel to Wild Justice, was fantastic. I could imagine Bodie reacting precisely that way to learning about Keith Williams' death and the fact that he was the only one of his old SAS unit left. Sue added authenticity by including Jimmy Keller and his whereabouts. More importantly, Bodie's pushing away from Doyle to keep Ray safe in case there was someone gunning for him. That rang true. The end leads quite effectively into the episode itself. Thanks, Sue. I hope to see more from this talented writer....

I really loved Karen's cartoons, especially the "Rambodie"!

"Attitudes" was a cute crossover with Knightrlder. However, the cruising of gay bars lost me. For me, the story fell apart after that. But I liked the beginning. "Echo" was an interesting A/U story. Ellis Hard has created an independent universe and new characters based on our Bodie and Doyle, but they are significantly different that some degree of imagination had to go into the story. I liked it even though A/U is not my usual cup of tea.[5]

Thanks for C&C7. It was wonderful and I've already read it twice.

Even though I originally bought the zine because it was recommended for the WOW crossover (and very good, I might add), I really enjoyed "Echo" the most.

Personally, I like crossovers and A/Us because they let the imagination take the characters in so many unique directions. I really enjoyed the play scenes between Aspen and Doyle. Aspen was so adorable.

I kept saying, "Tell him!" all the way through the first read. It was so suspenseful with the 'will he, won't he' mood. I would have liked to have seen Aspen attend the wedding, though.

In "They Shall Know War," I liked the way Debra showed Ironhorse's deep caring/concern for the man under his command, even though the man was not officially in his unit, was a bigot and did not accept orders from a Yank easily. The despair on Bodie's part when he thought he was being left behind was so touching. The characterization of Ironhorse had a nice touch of the mysticism that I associate with him.

Being such a recent convert to Pros fandom (Virgule, to be exact), I only know a little about Bodie, but kind of get the feeling he mainly developed his bigoted attitude during his mere days.

Of the two, I like Bodie the best. Be exudes a dark mystery that makes him so much more interesting and sexy.

Anyway, I greatly enjoyed the zine.[6]

Issue 8

cover of issue #8, TACS
image (from the artist's website) accompanying the Ellis Ward story, Breaking Cover. A perfume ad was used as the image reference source, with Doyle taking on the female role. Artist: Suzan Lovett. Title: "The Declassizing of Bodie".
illo from the zine

Chalk and Cheese 8 was published in May 1991 and contains 195 pages. Art by TACS (Front Cover, Phoenix, KOZ, Karen Eaton, Corinna Hansen, Dani Lane, Suzan Lovett, Sheila Paulson, Pat Cash, and Adrian Morgan.

On page 96A of this issue (accompanying the Ellis Ward story) is a Lovett art piece that used an perfume ad for its reference source. In the drawing Bodie is in a tux with his tie undone and Doyle is in blue jeans and a cut off top. Doyle has Bodie pressed up against the wall. In the original ad, which appeared in a book of advertising, the original Doyle character was a woman. The use of professional ads for reference material was not always welcomed in fandom. This image has been held up as an example of where the artist should have changed the female model proportioning to fit the fact that the characters were male.

At least one fan was unhappy with the reproduction quality of the Lovett art she'd received in the zine she bought. For the exchange between this fan and the editor, see the "Reactions and Reviews" section below.

From the editorial:

A friend of mine just recently referred to my past editorials as 'diatribes.' After taking a good looking at then, I decided she was right. They were. They reflected my feelings at the tine of writing, always just before a con and always frustrated with the lack of time and problems involved in doing a zine. After writing the 'diatribe,' I felt much better about the zine and gladly went on to the next one. Well, guess what, fen? This editorial ain't gonna be a diatribe. I feel great! And there are several reasons for this: C&C8 fell together rather quickly; 1 had minimum problems coordinating the writers and talented artists were coming out of the woodwork! Added to that is the fact that a new friend and new fan to Pros has fallen into my life here in Louisville and I thank Ghod for her every day. She keeps me sane.

I'm telling you all this so that you'll understand this next statement. I plan to take a three month sabbatical. (Christy says It won't last more than two weeks.) This only means that I'm gonna relax during the summer months and not do another zine until C&C9 comes out in October, 1991, in time for Zebra Con. Now, three months nay not sound like a great deal of time for you, but it's an enormous amount of time for me] I'll have a chance to get back to.

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 8

See reactions and reviews for Breaking Cover.
See reactions and reviews for Fear of Immortality.
See reactions and reviews for The Last Time We Saw Bodie.
[regarding the Lovett reproduction quality]: Many thanks for sending me chalk and cheese 8, which was excellent...

There is just one thing I was very disappointed about in the zine. I had seen a friend's copy before mine arrived, and was stunned by the Suzan Lovett colour art, so when my copy arrived, the first thing I did was to look at the art. What a crashing disappointment. I think the colour photocopier (or whatever) must have been playing up, as the colours are totally wrong. Doyle looks to be wearing multicoloured jeans (a mixture of green, pink and purple) and Bodie's trousers are the same. When I placed my copy beside my friend's copy, the difference is staggering. In fact, they almost look like to completely different pieces of art.

Sorry to go on about it. I guess if I hadn't have liked it so much, I wouldn't have been so upset. [the editor responds]: Fiona, I understand your agitation and I'm sending you out a new colour copy of Suzi's piece. However, you must realize that it, too, will not be exactly like your friend's, as it sounds like she got one from the first print run. When Suzi sent me the original artwork to copy from, I had over 200 copies made, as many as I could afford to pay for up front. When those ran out, I had to make copies off of one of the first copies, as Suzi had since then sold the original artwork. So the quality did go down some, but it was unavoidable. Then, too, we're talking Kinko's here, folks, the ones with color blind employees. I hope the new copy will be satisfactory. Let me know.[7]
[zine]: About C&C8—as usual, terrific. There were a couple I can't work up much enthusiasm for, such as "My Partner the Gun." It's written well, but a little too weird for me.

"The Flasher"—cute. I like cute once in a while. Actually, I could have used this story between "That Men Should Fear" and "The Last Time We Saw Bodie" —along with "Confection." I had just barely recovered from "...Fear" and you hit me with "...Bodie." Not fair... I haven't been in media fandom long compared with some of my other friends, but with all that I have read, this is the first time that not only one but two stories had me tearing up and spilling over—not only that, but it was in public, which was doubly embarrassing. Linda Terrell and Jatona Walker did their jobs well. In fact, I just reread them, and they did it again. "Breaking Cover" has to be my favorite of this issue. Suzan's art, what can you say, it's absolutely frabulous. It brought that scene to life and the written word brought the art to life. Suzan obviously worked very closely with the story or vice versa. "Vex Not His Ghost" is a clever crossover; would liked to have Been a cartoon or something with Slimer doing his thing to Bodie. "Wondering—Macklin" is scary.

The "Building To Last Universe" is great. Terence is doing a great job in building their relationship. Raven is a right clever moggy and did pick a pretty comfy home. As an aside—I agree with all the other LoCs—Raven needs a vasectomy. There are too many cats (and dogs) born unwanted, neglected and eventually dying either from starvation or being put down by (hah) humane societies. Yes, I know the way Raven has been built in this universe, but he does not need to go out. If B&D would have his tubes snipped, he will eventually lose the desire to roam; maybe not completely, but pretty much...

"That Men Should Fear," as noted earlier, really did roe in. But I'm really, really glad this story was written because C&C4's "Nobody Waves Goodbye" was another throat tightener and did deserve a sequel. I especially liked the line in "...Fear": "Frozen in the mane of King and Country..."

The art again was right on the button. To reiterate, Suzan's piece in "Breaking Cover" was no less than inspired. The B&Ws in "...Bodie" are sneaky. The first on pg. 190 is just cute, with Bodie eyeing the luscious buns, but pg. 195 is lethal. Alone, it would have been a hurt/comfort, but with the story, a puddler.

Guess that's it for now. See ya at Z-Con in October.[8]
[zine]: I believe this to be an even better issue than #7. A good mix of straight and slash fan fiction. Terrific cover by TACS. Why is it Doyle is given the elf role when it's Bodie who is such an imp? TACS certainly caught that.

Karen Eaton's cartoons are always a tickle and I've not recovered from her "Odd Avengers." The mental picture of Doyle ironing his hair...or Bodie doing it for him. It's certainly one of her funniest (to me) after "Rambodio. "

"Vex Not His Ghost" by Sheila Paulson. Nice to see this lady writing in the fandom even if it is a crossover. At first glance, one might think "Ghost-busters" crossed with anything to be silly, but this one raised the hair on the back of my neck. Krivas would be a powerful ghost that even Egon and Company would have trouble containing. And I did appreciate the touch of having Bodie sensitive to ghostly happenings. Most writers would have given that power to Doyle (it goes along with his interminable elfness). There is often more impact when "a statement" comes from Bodie.

"To Catch a Human" by Terence. At last, we get Raven's version of how he adopted Bodie. The silent miaow, the hypnotic "pity me" look from a perfectly healthy cat (which is why we are presently playing permanent host to The Pud— an enormous, fluffy black thing that took us in as a smudge of a kitten back in 1985. He's the alpha of 3 cats). The Pat Cash drawing on page 133 says it all—that look will get me every time.

"Fear of Immortality" by Salazar. Well, well, "clank" science fiction. And hardware angst! Someone must have heard my plea for some A/U with a B&D I can recognize. And it presents a more realistic view of two male friends working together without bogging down in slash baggage (as much as I generally enjoy slash, there are some slash conventions which just plain get in the way of a good story). I like the way Salazar worked in the similar backgrounds for B&D.

"Breaking Cover" by Ellis Ward. The Suzi Lovett (full color illo is H-O-T! And at 34 pages, this is practically a vignette for Ward. She spins a good yarn, but often spins it too long. This one is a good length, building up in subtle layers. And ward very rarely puts the boys in bed by page 4— she does let it build. But I do wish she'd retire her thesaurus. It's damned dangerous to be reading along at a good clip, then trip over couplets like the cat that was "assiduously insinuating" itself between Doyle's feet. I hit that one so hard my eyeballs rattled. Lines like this are acceptable in a poetic setting, but finding them in the middle of a sentence of prose is rather like having the elevator drop out from under you. Ward is a good writer who could be even better if she would tighten her writing and avoid the polysyllables which come across as an affectation.

"My Partner The Gun" by Natasha Barry. Something new in power phallic symbols. Although I could see what the author wanted to say, this was a silly way to do it. Besides/ I thought Bodie was the priapismic monster.

"The Wall" by Sheila Paulson. Sorry, this one didn't work for me. Using a Blake'3 7 episode ("Rumours of Death") as allegory made me much too aware of the fact that the author was using B7. I became so aware of the printed page that it stopped being a story for me. Besides, B&D don't strike me as B7 fans. More like Charlie's Angels or Dynasty.

"Confection" by K. D. Swan. Best thing about this almost too "cute" tale of Bodie blessed with a Brownie is the scene of him completely wrapped in duct tape. Something new in Christmas wrap.

"That Men Should Fear" by Jatona Walker. Cowley is dead now, too, and another op is going bad and a new agent is in danger, who ya gonna call? Not a bad read, but for some reason, the angst failed for me.

"Take Off" by Natasha Barry. Ah, based on the New Avengers episode, "Obsession" (of which I have a copy that I can almost see) which featured Doyle and Bodie as Larry and Not-Curly. Ah, und zo they are reassigned new lives and names by Cowley, eh? But, but...Gambit shot Larry in that episode and we all know Gambit shoots to kill....

"Last Time We Saw Bodie" by me! The Suzi Lovett illos capture just what I was feeling when I wrote this and I didn't see them until I opened this zine. *sigh*

"Snippets" by Khrystyna. Snicker...

Accolades to the artists—we don't paean them enough. I liked the drawing with "That Men Should Fear," but I would have liked better a drawing showing the three men as they waved goodbye to Murphy.

I was especially drawn to the KOZ illo on page 7—that curious look on Bodie's face as he's sitting with Doyle's arm across his chest. I've seen similar looks on women who are confident in their lover's devotion: "He's mine!"

Paulson's GB cartooning is spot on; Dani Lane gives us a good Macklin on page 126; nice feelings evoked from the Phoenix drawing on page 166.[8]
[zine]: Let me say that C&C8 continues your tradition of excellence. I am especially impressed with the work of Ellis Ward (me and everyone else, judging from the LoCs—it seems the only person writing in who didn't identify "Echo" as the best story in the zine was the author herself!). She has a real flair for setting up situations fraught with anticipation, building potential, and then finally allowing it to pay off in prose, which proves it's not necessary to go into graphic gastro-intestinal detail in order to be hot! Of course the stunning illo by Suzi Lovett didn't hurt, either!

Likewise with the last story, "Last Time We Saw Bodie." In a way, there's little point in bothering to praise Suzi's work because it's so consistently wonderful that any atory is inevitably enhanced by her pictures. At any rate, the story was good, too. I just read it first because the illos grabbed me as I was thumbing through the zine when I pulled it out of the mailbox. I realized, of course, early in the story just where it was probably leading. *sigh* It was a real gut-wrencher. Not that I'm complaining, mind you!

I enjoyed Raven's view of "Building to Last" well enough, but am looking forward more to getting back to the development of the relationship from their point of view, and the elaboration of the extended family they seem to be acquiring.[8]
[zine]: I found "Confections" delightful. Keeping the Brownie out of sight was a good idea, since it kept the story from being overly cute.

"Wondering—Macklin" had just the right touch of creepiness in it and was a good guess at a suitable background for such a character.

"To Catch a Human" was a very good description of cat tricks, although I have doubts as to a cat giving away secrets of the trade to anyone....

I really loved the scene in "The Flasher" where Cowley agrees to pay for the broken toy. shows the man has a sense of fairness. After all, it was personal property destroyed during working hours in the course of duties.

I loathed the basic idea of "The Last Time We Saw Bodie" so much that I'm afraid I cannot judge it fairly and will not even try.

"Breaking Cover" had a nicely done relationship and Winslow was an interesting character, but it seemed to me that both Bodie and Doyle were a little too tongue-tied for belief. Would Bodie really give up after one years-ago rejection if he felt so strongly? And why wasn't Doyle saying anything? Also, why did McCabe think he had to tell Doyle, anyway?

"The Wall" was a nice, short piece with a fine tie-in to B7. The relationship between Doyle and the Bodie who wouldn't let him close was very well written.[8]
[zine]: I enjoyed Chalk and Cheese 8 very much. Ellis Ward did her usual superb job. "Breaking Cover" was my favorite, and at MediaWest, everyone ran around all weekend asking, "Have you seen Page 96-A?" Suzan's illustration was breathtaking and thank you so much for reproducing it in color. When Ellis and Suzan team up, they are an unbeatable combination and I look forward to more collaboration from these two; they are easily the best at what they do in Professionals right now. I have heard rumors about a work in progress along similar lines to Master of the Revels, although a different storyline. I can't wait to see the outcome.

I also enjoyed Linda Terrell's "The Last Time He saw Bodie" very much. It was a powerful story, again enhanced by Suzan's art. Working with the characters as they are presented in the show, if not always the fanfic, I think it followed all of the characters through to a logical conclusion if Cowley had been butchered in the manner described. X don't always like some of Linda's storylines, but they are always well-written. This was no exception. I would like to see her concentrate her efforts on serious, powerful stories because she has the skill to carry them through. Previous stories seemed a little light weight, especially the stories with KITT and her Four Feet series.

"The Hall" and "That Men Should Fear" were also very good and held my attention. Sheila Paulson, of course, is a proven writer and, while Jatona is not quite as polished, she is showing marked improvement from some of her earlier works. I look forward to future stories by her.

Sue Well's "Close Call" was another well-written, well-plotted story. Again, what one expects from her pen.

Natasha Barry's "My Partner the Gun" was a strange story and didn't make a lot of sense to me. Unfortunately, quite often Ms. Barry attempts something different that doesn't quite work. I personally find her style rather choppy and, at times, disjointed.

"Vex Not His Ghost" didn't work for me, but it raises the issue of crossover stories. You have to care for both parts of the crossover for it to catch your attention, and all too often, I am not interested in the other half. When Debra Hicks writes her UNCLE/Pros stories, I am totally captivated; when she writes her Dangermouse/Pros, I skip over them because I have no idea who or what Danger-mouse is. (I know, I'm dating myself.) I felt her War of the Worlds/Pros story was well written, but I read it quickly and went on to other things. That is not to say that crossovers don't work, because many of them are well-written and have wide appeal. I do hope, though, that the writers will keep them coming because they are an interesting genre and it is curious to see what future combinations may be developed.

Karen Eaton was her usual brilliant self. I always enjoy her work and take the time to look at her cartoons immediately after reading the latest installment of the 'Building to Last Universe.' Yes, I admit it, as soon as I stop drooling over the latest cover art (and C&CS's was a real treat), I scan the Table of Contents... and head first for Terence's latest endeavor. "To Catch a Human" did not disappoint. This is a fine addition to the series which is rapidly becoming one of my favorites in the fandom. Terence writes with a deft hand and her characters are both realistic and likeable. Doyle's family in "Tell a Woman" C&C7 was terrific and I hope more of the family members show up. The scene when Mad-Merc Bodie attacked Ray's brother was a hoot and I could visualize it so well from her description. Thank you, Terence, for all of these characters, not the least of which is Raven.[8]
[zine]: I just finished C&C8 and you did your usual excellent job. It was worth the price for the illo on page 96-A alone! The story was enjoyable up to then, but when I saw that picture, it became my favorite story. (Bodie looks like he just got everything he ever wanted and now isn't sure what to do with it!)

As for the rest of the stories, I guess "The Flasher" and "The Hall" were my favorites. In "The Flasher," I could just picture all those toys jumping and running all over the room. And when Cowley saw the flasher... Priceless.

"The Wall" was good--not only because they have enough taste to watch Blake's 7, but because it shows the relationship between the two (three with Cowley) men. I thought it interesting that when Doyle was shot (-in "Discovered In a Graveyard*-), the only people whose opinions he cared about were Bodie and Cowley. Not even his family or any other friends. They were the reason he decided to live.

"Fear of immortality" was enjoyable, but it read like the middle of a trilogy. I would like to read more about these characters. I didn't really care for "Take Off," simply because I couldn't see anyone willingly overlooking the fact that Dumer tried to blow up Parliament. Especially Cowley. Let's face it, this is not a minor temper-tantrum because his daddy was killed. It was mass murder of a lot of innocent people.

"Vex Not His Ghost" and "That Men Should Fear" didn't work because the tone of the stories was wrong. "Vex," because the two universes are so different and "Fear," because I loved "Nobody Waves Goodbye" and I personally felt it was complete. The sequel went in a totally opposite direction from the first and kinda cancelled it out. If they were just going to a different place with the Bane job, it took away most of the impact.

But, without a doubt, the best story is "To Catch a Human." Absolutely purrfect! That line about Bodie needing a cat to run his life, calling Doyle 'that ginger-furred bloke,' the silent miaow. Wonderful. Terence should be proud of writing such a constantly enjoyable series.

Please feel free not to include this next bit. It's a blatant plug. I'm trying to put together a Pros Library Master Story Index. I'm looking for short one-paragraph summaries of the stories in the Library to put together in a zine, so that when you order from the Library, you have some idea of what you're getting (rape, A/U, action, episode it jumps from or to, etc.). Obviously, I can't do it alone, so if you or someone you know would like to contribute, please let me know.[8]
[zine]: All right, already! I know when I'm outnumbered, outvoted and intimidated i I was going to give Bodie a bit more time to get over his reaction to the idea of neutering the family pet (honestly, I intended to do it all the time and I personally would not live with an animal that wasn't spayed/neutered), but universal demand has caused me to bump it up in the timeline. So, watch for it.

I almost didn't get past the cover on C&C8. I just sat there and drooled over it. Thanks, TACS.

I had just as much trouble getting past 96-A. Talk about sexy! Ray Doyle la a randy little animal, isn't he? Suzan Lovett'a illo on 195 is gorgeous and so sad I almost didn't read the story, but the one on 190 is so sexy and funny that I couldn't resist.

Pat Cash caught Raven just right—particularly the huge eyes and pitiful look by the dust bin.

I've always loved KOZ's illos, but before C&C8. I'd never seen one on the Pros. Very nice, indeed!

Phoenix is a nice addition to your artists stable. Ia she/he new to fandom? It's just the last year or so I recall seeing Phoenix in multimedia zines....

And as for Karen Eaton...I'm sure it's all been said, but I'll say it again. I love those cartoons. I mean—the Odd Avengers? Ray in a jumpsuit with ironed straight hair? I cracked up. And Bodie as Rhett Butler? Frankly, with Ray Doyle in my arms, I wouldn't give a damn, either.

I loved Khrystyna'a "Snippets." Veni, vidi, visa, indeed!

Gene's "Mate" captured a good feeling in a few words.

My favorite piece of fiction was Ellis Ward's "Breaking Cover." It was sexy, warm and very loving. The Suzan Lovett illo didn't hurt.

Linda Terrell's "The Last Time He Saw Bodie" was very powerful and terribly sad. I could imagine it happening like that if Cowley bought it in the manner described.

"Confection" by K.D. Swan and "The Flasher" by Janet Walker were both quirky little pieces that left you feeling good. Sheila Paulson's "Vex Not His Ghost" was also very funny and a rather interesting Ghoatbusters tie-in.

I like Jatona Walker's sequel to "Nobody Waves Goodbye." "That Men Should Fear" had a wonderful line at the end—the exchange about "no rest for the weary."

"Pear of Immortality" was an interesting use of Laumer's universe. I particularly like the Tremblor named Murphy.

"Take Off was an interesting use of the New Avengers episode 'Obsession. A new view of B&D's background.

Many times I have seen comments about the lack of straight Pros in Chalk and Cheese. This issue was very much straight, with the exception of Ellis Ward and a few headed-in-that-direction stories, but all of them were good stories, so I almost didn't miss it.[8]
[zine]: I received C&C8 with much delight, and I really wanted to love it. All I can do, though is like it quite a bit. I was looking forward especially to the Ellis Ward and Sheila Paulson stories (both authors are favorites of mine from Blake's 7, even before I got into Pros). None quite met my expectations. (To be fair, I'm not really certain if that's even possible.) I did like Sheila's "The Hall" very much, but of course it's very short. I was extremely disappointed when the longer one, "Vex Not His Ghost," turn out to be a Ghostbusters crossover. It's not that I have anything against crossovers; Debra Hicks' Pros/MUNCLE series comprises some of my favorite, well-loved stories I've ever read. There are several others that come to mind, too--MUNCLE/Sapphire and Steel, B7/Trek, etc. But I hated the movie Ghostbusters; and it seems to me a terrible waste of Sheila's tremendous talent that she spend time on such stuff. I know: I've now horrified and offended Ghostbusters fans. I've undoubtedly horrified and offended Sheila—not my intention at all. Hey, folks, this is my opinion, mine alone and totally subjective. For the record, the story is well done and up to Paulson standards; it's just that I don't like it.

Concerning Ellis Ward's "Breaking Cover" -- this one, not to mention my reaction to it, is considerably more difficult to classify. Let it be said at the outset that I expect always (perhaps unfairly) a satisfying amount of angst from an Ellis Ward story. As I mentioned earlier, perhaps my expectations were too high, when I read the Table of Contents (bad habit, that), and noted the length of the story, I murmured to myself, "Oh, good—I'll save this one for last." But when I did read it the next morning and reached the end, I turned the page, not realizing it was the end. And then I shouted to myself, "Is that all?" Now, this is, perhaps, a tribute to the author's talent: to have read through thirty-odd pages and thinking, "Is that all?" when the end was reached. But the story feels incomplete, almost as if the author got bored toward the end. She spent many pages setting up an inevitable situation, and then didn't spend enough pages developing the situation. I suppose what I'm saying is that she didn't spend enough pages for the reader to wallow in. Perhaps it's my problem only: I'm a devout wallower (and I know that not everyone feels the way I do, believe me). I wanted more than I got. I don't think that the "more" would have hurt the story, sometimes (no matter how much I want it) I know it does; this time, it wouldn't have done.

Essentially, despite the above diatribe, "Breaking Cover" is still my favorite story in the sine. And I must mention Suzi's unbelievably fantastic (color, yet!) illo—what I wouldn't give for a print of that, Suzan.)...

I have a confession to make that hasn't yet ostracized me from fandom, but it might someday (I hope not!)--I hate cats. (Line forms starting somewhere in Siberia, all you cat-lovers. Sorry, but I just can't bear them.) That's why I haven't yet read "To Catch a Human," even though I'm more that fond of the Building to Last stories. It's bad enough, to my point of view, that the damn cat is so prominent in most of the other stories; I'm not quite desperate enough yet to read one from the cat's POV.

The rest of the zine, and by extension the zine as a whole, just doesn't have enough ... well, passion, or perhaps the old standby, angst, to satisfy me. (Translation: not enough slash. Not the mix I expect from a C&C.) This is not intended as criticism of you. Kindly Editor; I know you can print only what you get. Nor is it intended as a criticism of the authors. I know how it is; sometimes you just don't feel like it.... By the way, to those of you who don't know me, to my warped mind-set, "slash" refers not only to smarmy sex, but also to intense emotion—love or whatever. In other words, I really love to wallow.

All told (enough already, right?), I wish the zine had been more emotionally satisfying. But I'm not really complaining much; it's probably that I always want just a little bit more...[8]
[zine]: My favorite slash story was "Breaking Cover." Ellis Ward does such lovely long stories. I was sorry that there was only a short story.

"To catch a Human" from the Building to Last Universe. This is my favorite on-going series of stories. I look forward to reading lots more in future issues.

There were several excellent non-slash stories. Non-slash seemed to hold the majority in this issue.

"Confection" was a very 'sweet' story. A Brownie would certainly come in handy in my house!

"Fear of Immortality" was a very interesting science fiction piece. The Tremblora seem very familiar. Was this story based on a science fiction novel?

I enjoyed "Close Calls," although I'm sure it would make more sense to me if I had seen the series. (Yes, I'm hip-deep in reading the zines, but have yet to see one episode. But I'm working on it!)

The rest were good and enjoyable reads; I've just picked the highlights.[8]
[zine]: As soon as 1 laid eyes on C&C8, I was totally blown away. TACS did a wonderful cover. Suitable for framing with its vivid colors.

I think this one is the best zine you've done so far, Mystery. The artwork in this issue alone is worth the price of the zine. I don't think there haa been c&c with more or better art than this one. Phoenix can capture the expression on the guys' faces very well. I loved the illos on pages A, 63, 74 and 166. I hope we can see more from this artist in future issues.

The new artist, KOZ, has given us some fantastic pictures. I have to say that these are my favorite in the entire zine, especially the one on page 26. This is another artist whose work I hope will become better recognized in the future.

I'm glad to see some favorite artists' work represented as well. Dani's illos of the SF alternate universe story are great. Suzan Lovett's work is, as usual, breathtaking, especially the color picture. Karen Eaton's cartoons are as amusing and whimsical as ever. I loved the "Odd Avengers." Sheila Paulson did a great job illoing her own crossover story, "Vex Not His Ghost." I enjoyed reading this one. I could just see Slimer taking to Bodie and then sliming Doyle at the end.

Another favorite amusing story was "The Flasher" by Janet Walker. I could just imagine Bodie pulling a stunt like that, using the little toy as a distraction. The humor of the show was only one of the attractions that hooked me into Pros and that is very evident in this piece. "Fear of Immortality" by Salazar was certainly different from the usual SF A/u. It was straight adventure. That was an interesting touch, naming the Tremblors JXE (Jax) and mfe (Murphy). The ending was terrific.

"Breaking Cover" by Ellis Ward was a great post-"Discovered in a Graveyard" story. As always in Ellis' stories, all the pieces fit together to make a fascinating tale. In this one, the growing attraction between a gay Ray Doyle and a straight Bodie, their living together after Ray's release from hospital, makes for a tender love story, and then introducing some conflict in the form of an old mate of Bodie's. I really liked it.

"Take Off" and "My Partner the Gun" both by Natasha Barry were interesting A/0" tales. I really liked "Take Off," which was based on the characters Shaw and Collins played on the New Avengers episode, 'Obsession.' "My Partner the Gun" was a different kind of death story.

Terence's story, "To Catch a Human," was a lovely tale from Raven's point of view. I have two cats myself and I've fallen victim to the silent miaow more times than I care to remember. Cute artwork, too.

"Close Call" by Sue Hells was the story I was moat looking forward to reading, and I have to say that I was not disappointed. Sue really has Bodie's over-protective tendencies toward Doyle down pat. This story really is believable. Sue ties up all the loose ends of the episode "Close Quarters" well. Excellent job. Sue. Corinna's illustration on page 155 waa the best—I love Bodie's expression. "Snippets" by Khrystyna was hilarious. I could just imagine that conversation going on between the lads on a stakeout or waiting in the restaurant. Wonderful!

"Confection" by K.D. Swan was a lighthearted story. I can believe that a Brownie lost her heart to one very handsome William Andrew Phillip. It*a a very easy thing to do. K.D.'s other short piece, "Wondering--Macklin," was a thought-provoking vignette. Dani'a drawing of Brian was perfect. He was always an interesting character.[8]
[zine]: Congratulations on your Fan-Q award for best Pros zine for C&C7. You did a good job and deserve it.

"The Flasher" was a very cute and funny story. I can see Bodie owning something like that.

"My Partner the Gun" was not my favorite story. It's very difficult to make a the-person-I-love-is-possessing-my-toaster storyline work.

"Mate" was a short, to the point poem. Just the way I like them.

"Fear of Immortality" was an interesting story. Slightly strange, but that's okay, so am I.

I loved the "Odd Avengers" cartoon by Karen Eaton. Like all her cartoons, this one was hilarious.

"The Hall" was one of my favorites. You can always tell those people who used to write B7 stuff; it's the type of show that never really leaves you because it was so much about human nature.

"Breaking Cover" was a very good story. Ward may not believe in the 'short' part of 'short story,' but she is good.

And for probably the 634th time you've heard this from people, let me say how much I loved the full color Suzan Lovett insert: AAAMAAHHHHMHHHHHH! Thank you.

I loved the GWTH (-Gone With the Wind-) cartoon. I have to admit, if I had that (Ray and Doyle) hanging off me, I probably wouldn't give much of a damn about anything else, either. "Take Off" would probably have been better for me it I'd actually ever seen The New Avengers, but I definitely want to see it now.

I really love all of KOZ's artwork.

"Vex Not His Ghost" was very good. Speaking as one of the few people that Cindy Rancourt has not gotten to write Real Ghostbusters fanfic and who did kinda like the cartoon even before she started talking about it, I really liked the story.

"Wondering—Macklin" was one I particularly liked. It's very nice to see Macklin as a human being.

"To Catch a Human"—I liked seeing Bodie and Doyle from Raven's point of view.

"Close Call"—I liked the episode 'Close Quarters' and I liked this story.

"That Men should Fear"—I liked this story (I'm a Ghost and Mrs. Muir kinda gal), but I do have a problem with one particular part of the story: usually under such a stressful situation like that, I doubt many people would be thinking about what fantastic eyes Bodie has.[8]
For the best story in C&C8.1 think it's a real toss-up between "Breaking Cover" by Ellis Ward and "Fear of Immortality" by Salazar. I like everything Ellis Ward does and this is no exception. While the jealousy angle is not new for getting Bodie and Doyle together, I thought it was very well done. Also, the Lovett illustration set the story off nicely. As for "Fear of Immortality," I will admit to a bias for science fiction a/u for Bodie and Doyle stories. But this story also created a unique and compelling universe in just a few pages. I find in a lot of a/u stories that some aspects of Bodie's and Doyle's personas are altered, thereby lessening my enjoyment of the story. A/u stories can also lose some of the partnership aspect of their relationship. It came through very strongly with this story.[9]
I loved 'The Flasher.'1 I managed to anticipate the flasher getting wounded in action, but I had no idea Bodie was going to hit the Cow up for an expense chit. Very cheeky!

I'm afraid "My Partner the Gun" just didn't work for me. I thought the idea that Doyle must discover why he, someone opposed to violence, went into such a violent career was a good one. But the gun bit just didn't work for me.

I enjoyed "Fear of Immortality" very much. Coming from a sci-fi/fantasy background, I like to see well thought-out A\Us. I liked the sort of tentative relationship between the boys as well. I think it worked well in this story.

The Wall" went a bit over my head, although I did get the gist of it. I'm not really a B7 fan (Okay—I said it. Hit me with whatever you've got!), so I've never seen the episode in question; but from what I could tell, I thought the metaphor worked well.

Well, what can I say about "Breaking Cover" that wasn't already said in the LoCs (and better than I could ever put it, at that!). Ellis Ward is one of my favorites and this one was no exception. For the record, I for one, do not find her stories too long. I love the way she takes the time to build up a slow burn to just the right point and then lets loose. By the time they get together, the reader is feeling all the anticipation and longing that her two characters are experiencing. Of course, this one was helped along quite handily by page 96-A. The look on Bodie's face is worth a thousand words! And Doyle...all I can say is yum!

Although I've never seen "Obsession", I am familiar with the plot. And I thought "Take Off was a very interesting little suggested explanation of the boys' backgrounds. That showed a bit of thought I liked it, although I do have to wonder about a guy that tried the things Dumer tried. I really enjoyed "Vex Not His Ghost." The two shows meshed so well together. And her portrayal of Krivas was downright scary. It was also nice to see Bodie in touch with the "other-worldly" for a change, instead of Doyle. This one showed a lot of creativity.

I'm afraid I really wasn't that fond of "Wondering—Macklin." While it is a valid conclusion that could have been drawn from "Mixed Doubles," I prefer to think of Macklin as someone who cares about the men in his charge because he doesn't want them to end up like he did. It did make me go back and rethink my opinions, though; it just didn't alter them.

'To Catch a Human" was my second favorite story. I'm a "dog person," but my two best friends are "cat people" and I've spend a lot of time in the company of their four cats. I've seen a lot of Raven's plots in action first hand. Many of them have been tried out on me personally (I think they're trying to convince me that I should rethink my position on cats!). This was so well written. My "catty" friends agreed when I let them borrow the zine. I can't wait read more of the BTL stories. (That's one of the main reasons for ordering 4 and 7. I know I'm not reading anything in order, but what the heck!)

Since I'm so new to this fandom, I only have sketchy knowledge of some of the series episodes (although, thanks to a friend, I now have copies of some of them!), but I did have a synopsis of "Close Quarters" (but I haven't seen it yet). From what I do know, I think Sue Wells did a good job setting up that episode in "Close Call." It was fun to see all the pieces start to fit together. Now I really want to see the episode!

I came into reading this zine with a strong dislike of death stories. However, I have had quite a change of heart. I can now see why you have a soft spot for them! "That Men Should Fear" started the old water works again, but as I hadn't read the original (soon to be remedied now that I got my copy of 4), it left a few things unanswered. I'll give you a recap when I've read "Nobody Waves Goodbye". (I think this may be another 2-hanky special, so I haven't gotten up to reading it yet!)

"Confection" was absolutely adorable. Bodie is such a little kid, I can just imagine his reaction to finding a cookie as a pressie. And the thought of him covered in duct tape... Hmmm... (Although I'd rather see Ray like that, .but what would it do to his hair?!)

Well, I gave you a rather negative-sounding commentary on "The Last Time We Saw Bodie," but I didn't mean to! It was so beautiful. And it was totally believable. I could see what happened to Cowley sending Bodie off the deep end; and I could see Doyle waning with his conscience about what he should do versus what he wants to do. And yes, I did cry, but that's not a bad thing in my book! And now I can't wait to read it again! [10]

Issue 9

cover of issue #9, TACS -- a fan writes: "WOO, MAMA! YEAH! UH-HUHH!! So much for my reaction to the TACS cover." [11]

Another fan's opinion: "The rather ugly cover of Chalk and Cheese 9 features an agonized Doyle (apparently he read the previous issues) being comforted on Bodie's shoulder." [2]

Another fan writes: "The first thing I do when I receive a new Chalk and cheese is to look at the cover. This one was gorgeous. Kudos to TACS." [11]

Chalk and Cheese 9 was published in October 1991 and contains 206 pages. Art by TACS (front cover), Marilyn Cole, B.N. Fish, Adrian Morgan, Corinna Hansen, Suzie Molnar, Kate Nuernberg, Rolaine, Paulie, and Daphne Hamilton.

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 9

I just finished C&C9. A friend picked it up for me at ZebraCon a couple of weeks ago. As usual, I thoroughly enjoyed the Building to Last story, "Tomcats." It was well-paced with enough action to add spice to it.

I like a good play on words and "A den of antiquity" in "Moving" was a fine one.

"Eyewitness" was a good action story.

"Closing Doors" is an emotional mood piece that I enjoyed.

I like horse racing stories, so "Odds and Ends" was interesting.

"Confrontation" was a good example of monologue style.

"African Memories," I enjoyed because I like Cowley/Bodie stories from that period of Bodie's life. A purely personal preference.

"Kingdom of the Frog"~The Dangermouse-Penfold/Bodie-Doyle stories are always cute.

"Anticipation" was another monologue story/ one each from Bodie, Doyle, Cowley and Murphy. Mice.

"Games People Play" was a cute short scene and very like their characters.

"A Day in the Life..."—A good action piece and I liked showing both couples' needs after life-threatening situations.

"My Sunshine Also Rises" was silly, but cute.

Then came my favorite, "Boys i' the Hood". I've always enjoyed time and/or universe travel stories and this one was really good, and afforded Bodie a chance to settle something in his life that couldn't happen at home. I really enjoyed Avon and Vila from B7 showing up as well.

"Colour Me..." was a good read.

"No Mean Feat"—I've always enjoyed the stories in this series and this one is good. (- editor says: Linda keeps insisting that this is not a series, but just a collection of stories with the same characters. Somehow, I don't think I believe that anymore, and I'm waiting for the next story in this non-series to appear in my mailbox.-)

"The Third Week in April" is an excellent story that really gets into the guys' emotions. Hell-written with good sustaining interest.

"Grass" was a good epic poem, but you know I don't care for death stories.[12]
Why do I hear that remorseless refrain from The White Album? Number nine, number nine, number nine....

The rather ugly cover of Chalk and Cheese 9 features an agonized Doyle (apparently he read the previous issues) being comforted on Bodie's shoulder. Jam-packed (which you may correctly read to mean too tightly bound), this edition features stories and suchlike from C&C regulars Linda Terrell, Terrence, Debra Hicks, Natasha Barry, etc. The "suchlike" includes some nice artwork and some not so nice artwork, a genuinely funny "cow" cartoon, and a lot of really bad poetry. Ten poems altogether. I cannot help but wonder what it is about these two characters, Bodie and Doyle, that inspire so many otherwise rational women to write truly dreadful verse?

But these are dark thoughts for the lonely dead of night and not germane to our discussion...

Another disappointment (I use the term loosely) of this edition are the numerous shorts and snippets that pass for stories. This would be fine if we were talking about offerings from writers of the caliber of The Hag. We aren't.

Proceed at your own risk.

Tomcats by Terence: [#9] in the Curtains, Cuddles and Cats universe. Pretty much AU as far as resemblance to real life men, real life law enforcement, or the television program we know as The Professionals. In this nail-biting installment everyone in CI5 is crazy to be married and having families -- or at least a cat -- despite Ray's comment, "Don't be such an ass! We've never been fluffy, romantic types..."

Uh, you might have a chat with Terence, 4.5.

Eyewitness by Caroline Quinn: This is a bland and preposterous gen CI5-case story. In this tiresome scenario a youthful witness continues to be in deadly peril to the extent that gunrunners attack a well-guarded CI5 safehouse even though the kid has assuredly revealed all his knowledge (nil as it turns out) of an arms shipment. Meticulously silly from start to finish.

Odds and Endings by Sue Wells: Sue Wells does a nice job with the lad's voices, but otherwise this is a spectacularly dull and derivative case story. Gen, granted, but what kind of excuse is that for such flat storytelling? I can understand -- well, I can accept -- not wanting to write sex scenes, but are gen writers opposed to excitement of any kind?

African Memories by Kay: Cowley spends hospital vigil at Bodie's bedside recalling their long ago affair in Africa. So...horror story, I guess you'd classify it.

Kingdom of the Frog by Debra Hicks: In the kingdom of the frog...oh, just forget it. What could be weirder than another of Hicks' DangerMouse crossovers? The image of Doyle in shorts... And, no, I don't mean underpants.

My Sunshine Also Rises by Michelle Christian: This is an amusing take on the various conventions of Pros fan fic.

"--'E's gone off 'is top, 'e 'as, if 'e t'inks I--"


Doyle turned pond scum green eyes toward his ex-mercenary partner. "Wot?"

"Have your forgotten how to say your H's again?" Bodie asked patiently, as he craned his neck to get a peek at Doyle's oxygen-starved bum.

Doyle borrowed a goosed owl's eyes for a second before answering. "Don't you want to talk like that, then?"

"Not particularly."

"Oh. All right."

Boys i' the Hood by Jane Mailander: AU with Bodie and Doyle time traveling to Robin Hood's time. Mailander is a capable writer, but is that really an excuse?

Colour Me by Mystery Frank: Bodie and Doyle's housewarming goes flat (yep, that's a pun in honor of the remorseless Frankster).

This is another one of those floating dialog thingies which are essentially for the amusement of authors -- much like round-robin writing.

It's mildly reassuring to see that it didn't work any better back then than it does now.

No Mean Feet by Linda Terrell: Is there no end to the centaur saga? This time around we get it from the horse' The Black Stallion, it ain't. More like My Little Pony.

A Day in the Life Of... by Susan Douglass: In fairness I should point out that Douglass is a competent writer, she just doesn't tend to tell the stories I want to read. Don't you hate when that happens?

Here we have a hostage situation told mostly from Susan's (agent Susan, that is) POV. Douglass demonstrates a nice eye for detail and characterization.

The Third Week in April by Ellis Ward: Bodie and Doyle go ahead with vacation plans after Bodie suffers reprisals meant for Doyle from an old enemy.

This nearly 50 page story dominates the issue -- and that's all to the good. I like Ward's work a lot even if she is prone to over-explaining and overwriting in the style of the green eyes spat at him school. She comes up with clever plot premises and great character dynamics.

On the minus side, her stories feature a Bodie and Doyle prone to brood over their relationship and feelings for hours on end.

"We'll never get married, Bodie."

This is such a breathtakingly...un-bloke moment. Or at least an un-Pros moment.

But Ward's strengths far outweigh her weaknesses, and there are plenty of entertaining scenes and numerous good lines such as "voice rough as crushed stone."

One of my favorite moments is that of Doyle waking from a nightmare and getting Bodie his meds -- illuminating their almost psychic connection in a realistic way -- a scene of intimacy and awareness that is quite well done.

The flow of water shut off, and Doyle returned. As he had the night before, he brought with him a glass of water. This time Bodie was waiting, the two tablets already in hand when Doyle passed over the glass. He dispensed with the ritual with quick efficiency, slamming the empty container onto the bedstand with unintentional force.

Doyle's head swung up at the clatter, wide, still-haunted eyes focussing on Bodie's face uneasily. With the tone of a man offering his kneecaps up for target practice, Bodie asked, "Do we need to talk, Doyle?"

Not understanding the reason for Bodie's abruptness, Doyle countered woodenly, "No." Then, because it was his fault that Bodie's sleep had been broken, he added, "Just a dream, mate. Sorry I woke you."

Bodie's voice was surprisingly hard. "It wasn't just a dream, Doyle. It was about me--and Parker." At Doyle's sharp movement, he went on, "I wish you hadn't seen that. But I'm selfish, too, and I'm glad you got there before he got round to murdering me." [2]
"The Third Week in April" by Ellis Ward. Although I occasionally have some problems with Ward's style, I most always enjoy her canon-based stories. Therefore, I was astonished to find "Third Week" a bit of a let-down. It came across to me as a very derivative first-time tale; so derivative, in fact, that it was cliche. It was absolutely standard, done 1000 times before: "Bodie hurt/Doyle comforts/they find each other after days and/or weeks of introspection and misunderstanding." Not that it was a bad read, mind you. It had some nice snuzzies, but otherwise it was so...usual. Not at all what I've come to expect from Ellis Ward. Okay, we all write "standard" type stories, but I often find something "different" in a Ward story. I think she started to, in examining Doyle's reaction to Bodie's (yet another) rape. But it seemed to fade too quickly.

And at 48 pages, Ellis hasn't quite grasped the "short" in short story, if I may coin a phrase. The 3 or 4 (or more) pages devoted to Bodie and Doyle in and out of bed at night, jaunting to the loo, shoving pills into Bodie, returning to bed to talk, getting up to jaunt to the loo, sleeping late, going out to eat, shoving pills into Bodie, returning to their room to get in and out of bed all night and shove pills (and stool softener) into Bodie really pushed the envelope. That could have been very tidily done in one carefully-crafted page. It's an indulgence an author can't get away with (not with me, anyway) in a "short" story. And that's not just the opinion of an unrepentant minimalist-it's a short story axiom: start as close to the end as possible.

That aside, it's further ironic that this story features some of Ward's tighter writing. I didn't stumble over many of the tortured couplets or thesaurian phrasing which often mark her style. I'd like to see her attempt more "shorter" stories. It'll force Ward to tighten up her writing and a good writer will be better for it. Trouble with having a "reputation" is sometimes you have to live up to it. "African Memories" by Kay. Bodie/Cowley? Sorry, I absolutely cannot see this. Only one writer—Jane Carnall—has ever made it remotely work for me and even then I still couldn't see it. I fear I could not judge this story fairly as a result.

"My Sunshine Also Rises" by Michelle Christian. I call these "Dark and Stormy Nookie" tales. Although it was a bit strained, I got several good chuckles out of it.

"Kingdom of the Frog" by Debbie Hicks. Debbie's usual deft touch here with CI5 vs. DM. Fine banter from this author, also. She's the only one who can do First Person Bodie and make it feel right. Nice twist on the, unun, "Magic" Kingdom. Always wondered how they did that...

"Tomcats" by Terence. Ah, she fixed the moggy! And he just might stick around—I've heard numerous tales of older street tome coming in off the street, being neutered and settling down happily as a housecat. Another chapter in the Building to Last Universe. How this story was very much a day in the life of...and how the job certainly can interrupt getting a life. And thanks for giving Bodie back his name.

If I have a "complaint" it's that Terence makes B6D a little too "normal". We've seen in the series that normal is not an M.O. either of them understand. Then again, one psychological backlash to the kind of working life they lead is to try to be very normal, we've seen this with CIA, Mafia, etc. A 'pillar of the community' turns out to be a hit man or a secret agent. "But he seemed so normal!" his neighbors say in disbelief.

"Closing Doors" by Katy Deery. Nice little piece of angst, but some logistics please! How does Doyle, who is not more than two inches (if that) shorter than Bodie, rest his head on Bodie's cheat while both are standing facing each other? My mind conjured an awkward pose.

"Colour Me" by Mysti Prank. Pages of nothing but dialogue—and I was able to follow it all. Mo mean feat, Mysti! (Though I think a neo fan might have some problems. Hell, they'll just have to watch the show some more and read more fan fiction).

Who is this Cole artist-person doing Samurai CI5?...

Suzie Molnar keeps getting better.

Daphne Hamilton's drawings found the emotions of my poems, I think.

Karen Eaton's cartoon always get a snicker, if not a giggle.

"A Day in the Life of..." by Susan Douglass. I had some major problems with this. Is Douglass trying to develop a new category of bodice-ripper? "Ray impaled his lips" (around a "rod"?); "Moon-like visage" (at least she brought it out of hiding); "Wordless whimpers emanated" (this is a redundancy); "Striving vainly to dislodge the odious steel fingers"; "inexorably inevitable" (this is a compounded redundancy). I fear that lines like that, woven into a cliche story with wooden dialogue and neon stereotypes doesn't make the grade with me. I lost the story several times and my fingers are still purple. And if an author is going to name a specific brand of something, it would be a good idea to do some research as to why and what type. Douglass tossed out "Cessna" for the terrorists to "fly to South Africa". There isn't a Cessna made that'll do it in less than 4 hours. I doubt a 747 could make it in one trip. So I called a local Cessna dealer. [lots about Cessnas snipped] ...these terrorists had better have something waiting for them in Morocco. And don't think for a minute that it wouldn't be shot down if they left their hostages behind. The Government writes off the million pounds and prints some more.

The dealer also told me that, in the last few years, "innocent" planes have been shot down over Morocco and the Sahara—very nervous rebels running around there who don't like small planes over them. "Boys i' the Hood" by Jane Mailander. When I ran into the "it" that so conveniently had B&D waking up as Merry Men (no comments from the peanut gallery, please) I damn near tossed the zine. I did put the story aside and regrouped. Finally, I thunk, is this "it" so very different than the "it" which came over Thomas Covenant for 6 (interminable) books? Not really. So I started over and found a "different" tale of Robin and 'is 'oods. I liked the concept and I would like to dabble in this universe—it allows B&D to remain B&D from the series whilst doing their derring. If I get permission, I'd like to try my hand at one or two I've long wanted to try but didn't want to go through the convolutions of time travel or resorting to historical A/U. Good twist with Little John's, uh, baptism. Bodie should make an adequate Indy as long as he doesn't get tangled in the whip. (Where do you think the term "backlash" came from?) Doyle could be Luke Skywalker. Or they could be a pair of Scots Grays at Waterloo. But please, no Trek!

"Confrontations" by Jane Mailander. Said all the right things, in good turns of phrase. But I'm not sure I agree with it. I'm not comfortable with the setting.

"Eyewitness" by Caroline Quinn. Could have run as an aired episode. But why did "the bad guys" kill the agents and take the boy? I thought they were supposed to kill the boy.

"Odds and Endings" by Sue Wells. I remember that race in the fog. I have also seen the movie—"A Day At The Races", wasn't it? The author certainly has a "feel" for the track.

In ending, I'd like to thank Kathy Snow for her kind remarks on my writing and urging me to write more "power" stories. But does she have any idea of how hard it is to write stories like "Last Time We Saw Bodie"? I cried when I wrote that. I hurt for Doyle every word I wrote. I even put off writing the ending for days because I knew it would hurt. I can't maintain that level of emotion nor do I want to. So "power" stories will come from me only occasionally, I guess. I have to want to write one.[7]
"Silent Grass"— Cute, Khrystyna. Very cute. You know you can be legally strangled for making puns like that. (Kinda weird that this sine began and ended with poems that had "Grass" in the title.*.)

I see Terence was bullied into coughing up her Neuter-Raven story before its time. Geez, cat-owners, get a life—it's fiction! What's next, a Neuter Bodie campaign? (Watch how I "fix" Raven in my story in this issue.) The finest moment in the BtL universe has still got to be Neil Doyle's double-whammy in "Tell a Woman" (expecting a fluffy white Angora queen and getting a scraggly stinking black torn—then expecting a big-eyed teenage catamite and getting flung up against the wall by Cujo in camo.)

One piece of feedback from my "Boys i' the Hood" story was a medical cartoon from Nola Frame-Gray, who's a nurse when she isn't turning out wickedly funny multi-media slash 'toons. The cartoon was a lecture about the medical boo-boos I committed in the scene with Bodie and the wounded Blackwolf. Best way I can fix them is simply to change one word in the story, and hfive Bodie say, "Here, I'm bad with wounds." By the way, I had intended "Boys" to be a one-off, strictly a parody of A/U fan fiction—I stuck the Indy Jones ending on just because I'd never seen that particular crossover before in Pros fiction. But Hysti begged and pleaded... (-1 majored in this in college.-) Do you know how long it took to wrestle a story around that ending scene? And yes, I am going to write the story implied in the tag of this issue's Quanta Leap Universe story ("Igor! I've created a fan universe!"). Why 'Quanta'? Plural for 'Quantum,' of course! See, Bodie and Doyle stepped into the Fanzine Reading Room Accelerator at Mediawest..-and vanished...

FYIs "Boys" is not based on Pretty-Boy of Sherwood or Kevin Costner's film. (None of 'em—Kevin, Michael or Jason—are fit to lace Errol Flynn's jerkin.) There is, however, a touch of Fox Network's excellent Robin Hood starring Patrick Bergen (4–5 months before Kevin's movie), especially the description of Johnny Little and the forest scenes. Robin and the Sheriff are my own creations as far as description and character (the Sheriff isn't Krivas, that's Bodie's interpretation of the situation). Much the Miller is from Errol Flynn's movie. And of course Blackwolf and Foxfingers are from Howard Pyle's 1850 classic. The Merrie Adventures of Robin Hood. (You mean you don't remember Chapter 8, "Robin Hood Aids a Sorrowful Computer Technician"?) For added points: How many times did the word "bastard" appear in the story?... Debra: I almost hurled my lunch at the description of the computer voice in "Kingdom of the Frog," I was laughing so hard. Penfold's shorts came a close second (obviously he's been buying clothes at the same boutique that supplied Bizarro Vila's screaming-yellow-monkeys shirt). Third—"Mr. Eisner" himself taking Daphian to the airport, on other subjects: your double poem with Linda Terrell about the Anne Holly aftermath was lovely—and I sat with stinging eyes after reading "Checkpoint Charlie." Isn't this a strange and wonderful time for all the old Cold Warriors? And a quick nag: more MUNCLE\ Pros, please pretty please?... Liked Linda Terrell's poetry, especially "Undercover Blues" and the line 'Lucas is enraged 'cause Mac's got engaged."

"Day in the Life of..." ...Ah, well. Sex scenes tied together. Not exactly my cuppa. Was a nice change having a lesbian couple, though.

"Third Week in April"—Ellis Ward's fine storytelling once again, this time an atypical rape-and-recovery story. Notice that we are not shown the actual rape scene, or the sex scene; the surrounding story carries the emotional and physical weight of the deeds quite well. And the characters stay very much In character, combining the right amounts of brusquenese and sympathy in emotional territory neither one is used to walking through.

Loved Suzie Molnar's Bodie illo for "Grass." I actually imagined Bodie a little more cheerful—he's starting to enjoy life again after Ray's death—but what a lovely picture. {For my non-serious allergic reaction to "Nobody Waves Goodbye," see "Wave Goodbye Already!" in Brit Shriek.

Well, on with the festivities. Grab your hat and whip and come along! [7]
The first thing I do when I receive a new Chalk and cheese is to look at the cover. This one was gorgeous. Kudos to TACS. The next thing I do is look at the interior art, and hunt up all of Karen Eaton's cartoons. I like all three of Eaton's in C&C9, "Blood Brothers" has got to be my favourite! That sly dog Ray Doyle and his other bodily fluids had me cackling like a hen laying an egg!

The two Kate Nuernberg illos were lovely. She caught Bodie's smirk, and the way Doyle drapes himself when he's resting.. Two colour inserts in a row! Is this a new trend for Chalk and Cheese?...

By the way, I loved your reply to Judith Frank. I'd like to see Mrreowdo Rivera's "Kitty Secrets" special myself...

I'm grass crazy in the poetry department this issue. My two favourite poems were "Silent Grass" by Khrystyna and "Grass" by Jane Mailander. Khrystyna's philodendron was very funny. Mailander's work was very touching. I'm glad she had her Bodie survive losing Doyle.

Mailander's "Confrontation" was very well done. I could hear Ray Doyle in her verse.

The Linda Terrell-Debra Hicks companion poems were also very well done, and a very interesting complement to each other.

Ellis Ward again supplied my favourite prose piece. She handled the rape in "The Third Week in April" without being terribly graphic and drawing it out. Most of the story was about our boys and their deepening feelings for each other. It had a very nice feel to it.

Dangermouse was a hoot as usual. I particularly liked the bit about Penfold's shorts. I'm also looking forward to the MUNCLE crossover you mentioned Debra writing for C&C10....

I must like crossovers. Mailander's Robin Hood/Blake's 7/Professionals story was also among my favourite pieces. However, ending up with Ray Doyle as Short Round was a bit much!

I thank everyone for a very good read.[7]
Thank you very much for sending me a tribber's copy of C&C9. I loved it as usual, and it's always nice to see your own work in print. I'm hoping to do some artwork in the foreseeable future, but I don't really have any good photos to work a likeness from, so we'll have to see...

It was nice to see some of my favourite authors listed. Ellis Ward always gives a good read, but I like Natasha Barry's work as well. This wasn't one of my favourite's of hers but I have liked her stories very much in the past, although from your LoC section, I feel I'm in a minority of one. Please pass on my compliments and tell her there is someone out here who likes reading about a Doyle-fixated Bodie.

Thanks again for putting out such a good zine.[7]
It was well worth the wait. C&C9 was another fine zine. Beautiful cover by TACS and the two interior color illos by Kate were breathtaking. The eyes seemed to glow. Wow!

Mystery, you always have a good balance between humor and angst and between slash and non-slash. It's one quality I have always admired about your zine....

Again, you have gathered some great artists to illustrate this issue. The cartoons are fantastic. One of the funniest I've seen in a while was "Cows From Around the World" Of course, Karen Eaton's cartoons were a treat, as well.

Marilyn Cole's illustrations were interestingly different, especially Doyle on page 107. Suzie Molnar had some very good drawings of Bodie, Doyle and Cowley. I hope we can see more from her. I really liked her illos of Bodie on page 205. She captured that 'look.'

Paulie did a fantastic job illustrating the story "Eyewitness" by Caroline Quinn, which is one of my favorite stories in this issue. Caroline tells a fast-paced tale with all the good ingredients. Doyle helping out an old mate from the Met, a young boy in trouble, ruthless crooks, and Bodie, who gets out of rope better than Doyle. Jamie was an interesting character. He could also take care of himself as well as helping out a couple of CI5 agents. He reminds me how Ray Doyle might have been at that age.

My most favorite story in C&C9 was "Odds and Endings" by Sue Wells. I had always felt cheated by the episode "Hijack", when Harry Walter gets away. This story is very satisfying to me. I also loved the byplay between Bodie and ' Doyle. It really makes the story come alive. Good work, Sue.

"Tomcat" by Terence was another wonderful installment in the Building to Last series. I'm so glad Bodie finally had Raven neutered. I'm also glad Ray stopped calling Bodie by his first name. It just doesn't fit him at all. This was a very good story and I hope the series continues.

"Moving" by Gena Fisher was a short humorous piece I found very amusing.

I enjoyed "No Mean Feet" by Linda Terrell. I always wondered if there would be any offspring. Very well done short story. It ties up a few loose ends....

"Boys i' the Hood" by Jane Mailander was an interesting variation of the Robin Hood theme. I wasn't quite sure I'd like it at first, but once I read it, I loved it, especially the Blackwolf and Foxfingers characters. I am curious, however, about how Bodie and Doyle got to that time and place, and then suddenly jump to Indiana Jones. Do they 'leap' or what? A little more explanation would help.....

I also enjoyed "The Third Week in April" by Ellis Ward. She has done it again, written an excellent 'first time' story that makes you forget about all the other first time stories. Of course, Kate's color illos help, too. Very well done story. Good work, Ellis.

There were some sad bits, too. I enjoyed them, as well. "Closing Doors" by Katy Deery was great, solidarity between the partners.

"Confrontation" by Jane Mailander was an interesting slant on 'Discovered in a Graveyard', in that Mayli survived. Very well done from Ray's point of view.

"Grass", also by Jane, was a very poignant and sad piece. I could feel something squeeze my heart as I read it. How Ray's death affected Bodie, and yet his life went on. Very good.

I enjoyed C&C9 and am looking forward to C&Cl0. Good luck. Mystery.[7]
I'm getting hooked on the BTL universe. 'Tomcats" was a great story. It was so sweet (and a sad comment on society) when Ray was upset about not being able to get married.

I like all the action stories, but I am very fond of stories like these that get into the characters themselves. I'm also rather partial to good, old fashioned romance (which these are full of), so I can't wait to read the ones I've missed.

"Eyewitness" is another story that I'm reading out of order. I've read the two sequels in C&C11 and 12 (or was it 10 and 12...or 10 and 11? It has to be some combination of those three!). I read in a previous LoC that these stories were very close in style to the original series, so I was using these characterizations for reference when I was reading. Now that I've actually seen the show, I agreel They could almost run as episodes, they were so good. Caroline Quinn has really got the flavor of the show and the characters nailed.

"Closing Doors" is a good possible version of Doyle's past. It really emphasizes the fact that both Bodie and Ray were alone, and were so lucky to find each other to turn to.

I like stories in which the presentation is as much a part of the enjoyment as the content. (Does that make sense?) "Anticipation" is one of those stories. The fact that it is written as four similar, but very different, soliloquies is as interesting as the thoughts themselves....

I think I already covered "My Sunshine Also Rises" in the last letter, but let me say it again. This is one of the funniest things I've ever read. My friends, the cat lovers, gave me a dramatic reading of the original at a convention and I thought it was wonderful. But this one takes the cake. She has managed to include in a few short pages just about every common phrase/idea from Pros fandom to great effect. If they said sunshine one more time, I probably would have ended up in the hospital!

Jane Mailander's Quanta Leap stories are another series I can't get enough of. I'd read the later ones, and this one was just as good. I'd like to hear some more about that Camelot leap, though! I love the way she throws in little bits from other shows/movies (like the "I, Claudius" references In "Danteland" and "Ghostbusters" in "Dances with Bulls"). I can't wait for the Regency romance....

I found the metaphor in Trail's End" very effective. Nicely done.

Your own contribution is another case of enjoying the presentation as much as the story. I'm impressed at the way you kept the whole thing going entirely in dialogue (no mean feat, that!). I had a lot of fun reading this 'cause it makes you work. I had no problems following, though. But the pun at the end—ARRRRGH! I loved it! Very cleverly done, and I'm not just saying that 'cause I'm talking to you! ...Ah, Ellis Ward. Once again, she creates just the right amount of tension and sustains it for just the right amount of time. Her characterizations are always so believable, too. Their self-examinations always ring true. A lot of thought goes into these stories. I've never read an Ellis Ward I didn't like! ("Harlequin Airs" is what started me in this fandom in the first place).

Well, that about wraps it up. As I look back over this, there's not much in the way of helpful criticism (I'm not much good at that); it's mostly "I like this" or "I don't like that" (I might not know art, but I know what I like...).[10]

Issue 10

One fan comments: "Ah, nice cover [of] Bodie, TACS. 'Les Liaisons Dangeureuses?' (or however the hell the French spell it...')" [13]
sample interior page

Chalk and Cheese 10 was published in May 1992 and contains 174 pages. Art by Phoenix, Corinna Hansen, H. Ann Walton, and Adrian Morgan (front cover).

In the editorial, Mysti Frank wrote of a fan, Kay Wells, who had "rewritten" this story as a Kirk/Spock story called Cover Up:
Approximately a week ago, I received a letter from Kay Wells stating that she could not remember the name of the story or its plot, but did not feel she had anything to apologise for. I was rather confused as to what she was refering until I chanced to talk to a few West Coast friends, who informed me that me Wells had taken Ellis Ward's story, "Breaking Cover," which was published in Chalk and Cheese 8, and rewritten it as a Kirk/Spock story (without the author's consent or even awareness) and submitted it to Robin Hood, who, not knowing the circumstances, published it in First Time 31, her K/S zine. Not only did she "rewrite" the story, but she lifted whole paragraphs intact. Regardless of what you call it, this is plagarism, pure and simple. Ms. Wells said that she didn't think that K/S fans read Pros, or vice versa, and that the story just seemed to be made for the K/S universe. Folks, fandom as it exists today is too well connected, too diversified, for anyone to think he or she can get away with this. I cannot control Ms. Wells' actions, nor can I speak for Ellis Ward, who is dealing with this matter in a dignified and humourous manner, but this situation galls me. It strikes at the heart of the editor in me and angers the writer in me. What if Ms. Wells, or someone else, decided to do that with one of my stories? Regardless of what anyone may think of my stories, I can at least state unequivocally that they are mine, every word agonized over and carefully chosen. Me. Wells cannot say the same. I apologize for using this editorial as a soapbox, but I felt the above needed saying. Please, fen, don't plagarize. If you feel the need to rewrite a story—from whatever fandom—at least tell the author and zine editor so. If you plan to release your "new" story into the circuit, acknowledge the title of the story, if not the author, that you are borrowing from. This is only respectful, and respect makes the world go 'round a lot smoother.
  • Letters of Comment by D. Readers (1)
  • Modus Vivendi by H.G. (10)
  • Cartoon by Jane Mailander (21)
  • Out of the Rain by Liane Beck (22)
  • For Sunshine by K. Ann Yost (25)
  • Too Much of a Good Thing by Caroline Quinn (26)
  • Tea and Sympathy by Terence (from the Building to Last Universe) (36)
  • Murphy's Task by K. Ann Yost (46)
  • House of the Rising Sunshine by Michelle Christian (47) (A parody of Pros fandom fiction cliches, the name of this fic is probably a nod to House of the Rising Sun, a controversial story which was printed in the first issue of "Chalk and Cheese.")
  • Bodie's Book of Words to Live By by Khrystyna (49)
  • A Friend in Need by Caroline Quinn (50)
  • Musings While Upside-Down by Marcia Brin (65)
  • Is Trust Enough? by K. Ann Yost (66)
  • Dream Lover by Vicki Martin (70)
  • Bodie's Book of Words to Live By Khrystyna (90)
  • Cartoon by Karen Eaton (91)
  • Thoughts Unspoken by K. Ann Yost (92)
  • Christmas Reflections by Marcia Brin (93)
  • Helping Hands by Daria Littlejohn (96)
  • Playing Cowboy by Michelle Christian (100)
  • In Our Dark Souls by Linda Terrell (part of her series in which Bodie is a shapeshifter who has a daughter who is a horse.) (104)
  • Bodie's Book of Words to Live By Khrystyna (125)
  • Never a Dull Moment by Caroline Quinn (126)
  • Bodie's Book of Words to Live By Khrystyna (128)
  • Cartoon by Karen Eaton (129)
  • Bodiana Jones and the Eye of Argon by Jane Mailander ("Bodiana Jones and the Eye of Argon" by Jane Mailander is the second of her Quanta Leap series in which Bodie and Doyle are propelled into different times and places to solve problems. In this outing, they leap into an Indiana Jones world, where Doyle ends up as a sacrifice.) (130)
  • Cartoon by Karen Eaton (168)
  • Last Tango in London by Gena Fisher (169)
  • Bodie's Book of Words to Live By by Khrystyna (174)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 10

Chalk and Cheese 10... has some really bad writing in it. Or at least that's how it struck me. I dunno, I've just flipped through it again to see if I'm being unfair. Maybe I should read it again properly to double check. But.. hmmmn. And it does have some good too - my fave HG.[14]
I like Mailander's work in general, though I didn't think it was nice for her to kill of another author's well-loved character. So she's not a cat person, she shouldn't attack the ones who are. (editor interjects - Terence, the author of the Building to Last stories which feature a cat named Raven, says she is not the least upset that Jane killed off a cat named Raven in her story. In met, Terence says she was quite flattered that Jane thought Raven worthy of mentioning long enough to kill!-) [15]
Ah, nice cover Bodie, TACS. "Les Liaisons Dangeureuees?" (or however the hell the French spell it...)

Hey, Terrell, re your LOC in #10; the fastest way to get me to write something is to tell me I shouldn't! Yes, Aquarians are like that—show 'em a sacred cow and they fire up the barbecue. Now if you'd urged me to write a Quanta Leap Trek story, I'd have turned it down flat. Shall I leave you wondering if I'm going to do it...? Favorite story of the whole issue was the first one, "Modus Vivendi." Fresh and clean and unvarnished as a living pine tree--just the way I like my fiction. So this is the famous H.G. I have been hearing so many good things about. Well deserved, H., can I call you H.? Mice sweet poems by K. Ann Yost. But please, in "For sunshine," it's "I would lie in bed..." "Too Much of a Good Thing" by Caroline Quinn reinforces my belief that people who deliberately go out looking for adventures are committing Evolution in Action. "Tea and Sympathy"; a dash of iron and shadow in the BtL universe. Thank you, Terence, for giving Raven the night off. No homophobe is worse than the gay homophobe—self-hatred is self-destruction. (Would that explain bisexual David Gerrold's hysterical hatred for K/S?) AIDS-testing has created a truly vicious emotional roller-coaster. You're safe and clear and negative—but come back every six months for the next couple of decades anyway, just to make sure. Not to mention the strains that don't show on the regular tests. Not to arrangements for his estate, and finally hold Johnny as he dies. Suddenly Johnny's parents remember their sweet and perfect son; they swoop in, take his body away for family burial now that he's dead and can't embarrass them, and warn Johnny's lover and friends—his real family—that they'd better not come within 10 miles of the cemetery. Family Values, Mr. Bush. Like Marcia Brin's poetry very much. "Christmas Reflections" is right on—nothing like watching someone else get excited about something you take for granted to change your perspective on that something. As a member of a large family (I'm seventh of nine kids, and four of my six elder sibs have produced twelve children), I can attest to the recharging of one's batteries that comes from sitting back and soaking up the family atmosphere (and chaos!) from such get-togethers. (I'm the one over there on the sofa reading The Hobblt to a cluster of five boys and girls.) "Musings While Upside-Down" hilarious. "Dream Lover" by Vicki Martin—Too sticky and maudlin for my tastes. Too many adjectives and adverbs clog the emotional content of a story. Besides, Bodie's got too much iron in him to wilt like that. He'd die a little inside at having to break Ray's neck, but he would know he'd done the best thing he could have done for him and that would give him comfort. Good premise, though, of Ray having to perform some kind of afterlife penance for forcing Bodie's hand. "In Our Dark Souls" by the Terrellmeister. I'm not especially a horse-fan or horse-racing fan (I did get the prerequisite Horse Sweats that all girls go through from ages 7-16, but developed antibodies), but I will never forget the anguish I felt when I saw Ruffian stagger during her match race (1974? '75?) ... and when she was destroyed the next day because of that broken ankle. The first half of the story acutely brought that back. The second half got a little too witch-woman, cabal, equanthropic for my tastes. And I don't worship horses any more. Sure horses are beautiful, but they are dumb. (Same reason I don't care for Blake 7's Tarrant that much, come to think of it.)

The "Bodie'a Words to Live By" on page 125 had me coughing out my gall bladder I was laughing so hard. Liked the Phoenix Cowley on page 159. (I'm still having major wet-dreams about her Avon Calling 2 covers and gatefold!)

Karen Eaton's work's always good for at least a smile; "surveillance spread" on page 166 got a full out-loud laugh.

Well, on to Number 11, a joyous holiday no matter what planet you're from (Hey, Quark fans, remember that one?).[13]
C&C9 was quite good. Naturally I enjoyed the latest Building to Last story. Chris is acting like a jerk, but I was warned. Terence, as usual, wrote well.

"Kingdom of the Frog" was inspired silliness, as usual for the Dangermouse crossovers. I rather like the idea of Merlin and Gandalf trading off shifts running Disney World. Who runs Disney Land?

"Another Few Feet" was intriguing. Do we get to see the conversation between the girl and her mother? [13]
The cover on C&C10 was almost enough to convert a diehard Doyle fan to Bodie random. TACS has outdone herself.

Karen Eaton's cartoons were great, as usual. I particularly enjoyed the 'surveillance spread' bit.

Mailander's Opie and Boyle was also a hoot. But it was very naughty of her to 'fix' Raven that way in "Bodiana Jones and the Eye of Argon." I laughed 'til I almost choked. (-editor says: FYI, although I have never read it, Jane tells me that 'The Eye of Argon' is a really bad. Star Trek story written by a thirteen-year-old about a multi-faucted emerald ruby [disregarding the fact that you can't have an emerald ruby; kinda like having an honest politician], which is read out loud in a circle late at night at some cons. A person reads until they laugh, and the story is passed to the next person. Apparently, the story makes it way around the circle several times before it's finished.-)

I also enjoyed H.G.'s "Modus Vivendi" and Linda Terrell's "In Our Dark Souls." It's a pity Bodie's daughter died, though.

I hope that the plagiarism of her story doesn't sour Ellis Ward on fandom in general. I do look forward to each new story under her by-line. (editor says: -Ellis has responded like a lady. She's ignoring it.-)

Mysti—great job. Thanks! [13]
"Modus Vivendi" was an interesting look at the boys' first meeting and early cases.

"Out of the Rain" was an emotion-packed piece.

"Too Much of a Good Thing" I enjoyed a lot. I think in Ray's position, it was a perfectly logical thing to do. Sometimes Bodie can be a real pain.

The Building to Last universe story, "Tea and Sympathy/" was a fine addition to the series. Bodie helping Murphy deal with what Chris had done made a wonderful story.

"House of the Rising Sunshine" was just as cute and silly as its prequel in C&C9.

"A Friend in Heed" was a good action piece and Jamie is a sympathetic character, if trouble-prone.

I don't know as I agree with the premise of "Is Trust Enough?" or not, but it was an interesting piece nonetheless.

"Dream Lover" was difficult for me to read. I cried all over the place. Good story, though.

"Helping Hands" I enjoyed just because it was a piece devoted to just being a friend.

"Playing Cowboy" was a nice short dealing with will-they-won't-they get it together.

"In Our Dark Souls" was a nice mix of horses and mythology. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

"Never a Dull Moment" is the kind of thing that should never happen, but does anyway.

"Bodiana Jones and the Eye of Argon" was every bit as good as the preceding Quanta Leap universe story. Again, this gave, in the case of Ray, a chance to overcome a problem in his life that couldn't be done in the home timeline.

"Last Tango in London"—another 'how they might have gotten together' piece. Well done.

Well, there it is, Mysti, just as I promised.

Keep those C&Ss coming. They're great.[13]
"Modus Vivendi" by H.G.—Finally, an early-partnering story that said it plainly and simply and realistically. This is easily the best of the early-teaming tales I've ever read. Two highly-trained, wary men, thrown together and told to "make it work or else" and they do it very matter-of-factly and, refreshingly, with no slash baggage to deal with.

I liked the suggestion that B&D are bi and would be "willing" to get it on in future—but for now, they have to be all business or risk each other's life. No deathless prose or tortured metaphors; no bed scenes at all. It was the kind of fast-paced, witty B&D story I like to read but don't care to write.

"Out of the Rain" by Liane Beck—Another "realistic" story, this time a look at Bodie after Fall Girl—where'd he go? What did he do? How did they get him back? I liked the touch here that Cowley knows where Bodie is, but is leaving him alone. Bodie is pretty much a work-it-out-himself type and there are times when it's best to stay away.

Good character studies. Bodie felt right; Doyle reacted right. No maudlin sappy tears at the end, just two guys a bit "lost," reacting like men will with other men.

"Bodiana Jones and the Eye of Argon" by Jane Mailander—great romp! Like the way she keeps BSD in character. Loved that "mystical" ending—Bodie giving his heart to Doyle. (Hell, okay, it was cloned, utero?) Nice touch amidst the hijinks, adventure and mayhem.

But off again at the end? How long is Cowley going to put up with this? Eventually, B&D will run out of holiday time. How long can Cowley do without his top team? "it" another job?...

"Too Much of a Good Thing" by Caroline Quinn—Too much "business" for such a short story. The weak plot device leaves it unfulfilling.

"Tea and Sympathy" by Terence—I was mildly disappointed by this. It didn't really go anything or go anywhere. It seemed to be lacking Terence's usual light touch. However, I did appreciate making it plain that straight women also play the "all you need is a good fuck by a great broad to convert you" game with gay men. It does happen.

"House of the Rising Sunshine" by Michelle Christian—Had its moments, but could have been a lot more chuckles if the laughs hadn't been so obviously reached for. I felt the humour was strained (whipped, rather than blended).

"Dream Lover" by Vicki Martin--Oh, dear, I am sorry, but this story was not only impossible, it was sick.

"Friend in Need" by Caroline Quinn—an otherwise fairly solid yarn was, for me, constantly interrupted by unnecessary paragraphs and run-on sentences. For instance, I feel that the entire opening paragraph could have been left out and we wouldn't have missed a beat. As it was, the too-long introspection really doesn't "grab." Without that paragraph, we'd start out with Doyle reluctantly answering an Insistent phone.

"Is Trust Enough?" by K. Ann Yost—an adequate tag to wild Justice.

"Helping Hands" by Daria Littlejohn—nice little tag to Look After Annie, but I felt it may have fallen into a romp a bit too quickly.

"Never a Dull Moment" by Caroline Quinn—pleasant PWP character study. Ending line was a snicker.

"Christmas Reflections" by Marcia Brin—Yup, that's our Bodie. Don't get between him and any gift any day. By the way, I call this type of prose-musing a "tone poem."

On the note of plagiarism: in a fandom which thrives on lifting plots from classic novels, writing sequels to others' sequels, perhaps it was merely considered "borrowing" Ward's story. After all, how can a fan sue another fan for lifting the plot of a story which is already a copyright violation to begin with? I mean, we're all already "stealing," so I guess some fans consider it their privilege to just lift someone else's story.

I think a lot of that mind-set is due to fannish writing not being seen as "real writing" (i.e. legitimate). No money changes hands; no contracts are signed, so it's not like the "real world," is it? Maybe not, but there is still something known as courtesy. And some fans are just more courteous than others.

It was mean-spirited and presumptuous. And bespeaks a rather imperious attitude toward the rank-and-file fans. "Oh, they'll never read this, they're in another fandom."

Not these days with everything lurking in everyone else's computer! [13]
I just wanted to dash off a short LoC, well, really it's kind of a fan letter. In CSC9, there was a wonderfully warped story, "My Sunshine Also Rises" and in C&C10, the sequel, "House of the Rising Sunshine". These two just wiped me out. I know the people around me were convinced I'd finally lost it because I giggled for an entire day after reading each of these literary masterpieces! Michelle Christian is a wonderful writer and I'm begging, with this LoC, for more of the Sunshine stories. Pretty please?

And even when she isn't tickling my funny bone, Michelle is spot on with the serious stuff. Loved "Playing Cowboy." It kind of reminded me of the time Maddie and Dave made it on Moonlighting—kicking and screaming all the way.

And I hope Jane Mailander keeps the Quanta Leap universe going, very nice!

All the other stories were, as usual, excellent. Some new names and lots of favorites; all in all, a great mixture. And the cover! Excuse me while I get the hormones back under control. TACS always does a beautiful Bodie. Looking forward to C&C11's cover and contents; I've never been disappointed yet. Gosh, I'm glad I found this fandom.[13]
My friend Laura bought C&C10 from you, got to the part about the horse dying, and threw it across the room (temperamental); so now I've got a copy of CaCl0. I loved "Modus Viviendi," "Bodiana Jones," "Musings while Hanging Upside Down" and "Bodie'e Book of Words to Live By." They were even better than Eaton's cartoons. (Has she considered putting out page 174 as stationary? She'd make a fortune.)

Back to "Bodiana Jones" -- I just wanted to tell Jane that I loved the way she tied the first two movies into the Professionals universe. In fact, I liked her version much better than I did the second movie. I'm sure glad that disgustingly gory movies were a fad that came and went so quickly.

About "Tea and Sympathy"! I almost threw the zine across the room. I love Chris. He's a well-balanced, original character. They are hard to come by. Dead and buried in one line? I love the BtL universe; I just hope she's going somewhere with this, and didn't just get tired of the character. I'm looking forward to the next installment.

The best artwork in the zine had to be Corinna Hansen's Doyles.[6]


  1. ^ Susan Douglass in Short Circuit #3 (October 1990)
  2. ^ a b c review by JGL at The Hatstand, Archived version
  3. ^ from an LoC in "Chalk and Cheese" #7
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i from an LoC in "Chalk and Cheese" #7
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h from an LoC in "Chalk and Cheese" #8
  6. ^ a b from an LoC in "Chalk and Cheese" #12
  7. ^ a b c d e f from an LoC in "Chalk and Cheese" #10
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k from an LoC in "Chalk and Cheese" #9
  9. ^ from an LoC in "Chalk and Cheese" #14
  10. ^ a b from an LoC in "Chalk and Cheese" #15
  11. ^ a b from "Chalk and Cheese" #10
  12. ^ from an LoC in “Chalk and Cheese” #11
  13. ^ a b c d e f g from an LoC in "Chalk and Cheese" #11
  14. ^ comment by byslantedlight at About not writing and zines, Archived version posted November 2005
  15. ^ from an LoC in "Chalk and Cheese" #14