Do I Seem Bulletproof To You?

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Fanfiction
Title: Do I Seem Bulletproof To You?
Author(s): Fleshflutter
Date(s): June 2008
Length: ~96,000 words - 8:20:06 hrs
Genre: slash, RPF, AU, hookerfic
Fandom: Supernatural RPF
External Links: Do I Seem Bulletproof To You? (LiveJournal);
Do I Seem Bulletproof To You? (Ebook Library);
Do I Seem Bulletproof To You? (Audiofic Archive)
podfic cover by aesc

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Do I Seem Bulletproof To You? is a J2 AU story written by fleshflutter as part of the 2008 Supernatural Big Bang.

It is considered by many in Supernatural fandom to be a perfect example of the hookerfic genre. Artwork is provided by wanttobeatree. The story won an SPN Award for 'Best RPS Big Bang' and both a podfic and an ebook version have been created. The eight-hour podfic by cath was posted on the Audiofic Archive in December 2009.

Author's Summary: When he can't find any acting work, Jared takes a job as driver and bodyguard to Jensen, who is an extremely expensive prostitute with a bad habit of attracting crazy people...

Fandom Reactions

This is one of the greats of prostitute fic. It’s dark enough and angsty enough to actually be somewhat believable. At the same time, it’s one of the few prostitute fics where nothing goes seriously wrong for the prostitute involved. There’s really nothing not to love about this story. Jared and Jensen work really well in this. Chad is great as Jared’s best friend, awesome to Jared but enough of a jerk for him to be believable. Chris and Steve also rock, although they really could have been in the story even more. And the writing is impeccable. The plot is perfect, logical, and yet unique. And characterization is spot-on. All in all this is a great read, and although it is dark it’s not nearly as dark as it could be."[1]
"Again, has anyone *not* read Do I Seem Bulletproof to You?.... Of course not. Hell, there are 17 pages of comments on the damn thing. Its one of the most amazing J2 AU fics out there. With Jensen has a very high dollar prostitute and Jared hired as his driver/bodyguard the plot alone is attracts any J2 shipper. But the delivery. The delivery was amazing. One of the few, if not only, fics where one of them is an active prostitute even while their romance and relationship is building. Its awesome. And the characters are written in such a way that its all so believable. And all those other things that make a story great- exciting, angsty, romantic, sweet, sad. Yeah all those things. ... GAH - I just went back and read a little paragraph from chapter 10 and my chest is all tight and hot. Man, writing like that just burns so good, you know?"[2]
"....I don't share the widespread fascination with what fandom calls hooker!fic. I could go on for about 5,000 words or so on how the commodity model of sex (which is a little more complicated than just the obvious thing about selling sexual services--for reference see this blog post and the Slate article it deconstructs) is so foregrounded in fic involving sex workers and what I think that means about how sex is written as narrative kink in fanfic. ..... Suffice it to say that this story is a brilliant depiction of the commodity model, that seeing himself and Jensen through that lens actually prevents Jared from living his life in a fulfilling way. Both characters struggle to frame their lives and their feelings for each other without ever rising out of that model, and while all of this is perfectly plausible, the story depicts but does not critique. It is for me impossible to read this story in any kind of immersive way, I can only intellectualize it.

Beyond the fact that Jensen's sexuality is something he never has agency over even when there is explicit consent, the most troubling aspect of this story is the characterization by everyone of the clients of sex workers in moralizing and demonizing terms. This is a fairly bog-standard feminist view of the male clients of sex work performed by women. These men are disdained as perpetrators of patriarchy only with their own sexual desires or needs written off as base and morally repugnant. The ideological support for criminalization of "Johns" and public shaming exercises is fairly broad. In this fic the depiction of this attitude leans over pretty damn far into kink shaming, since the most egregious client behaviour is kink done really, really unsafely, without negotiation and without genuine consent.

There is absolutely some great stuff here in this story. We get a genuine sense of Jared growing up some, which is a wonderful thing to see in a fandom about a guy who is successful without a hell of a lot of setbacks at a really young age and yet rarely matures over the course of a story. The central relationship is rocky and yet fundamentally honest within the world it exists in. The story takes a very mature and adult look at how you negotiate your place in the world....[snip]....

.....It is a very well told tale, and worth reading, even by me. And that's what I love about fandom, that there's stories that make your heart soar, and stories that make you think and the same story might be both those things to different people."[3]

Additional feedback at Do I Seem Bulletproof To You? Goodreads page, Archived version

Artwork

References

  1. cheetahanabel in epic_recs, December 15, 2010. (Accessed 12 Nov 2011)
  2. And Some Old J2 Recs by ou-peachus, dated Feb 23, 2009. (Accessed 12 Nov 2011)
  3. The J2 Over 400 Club rec post dated Feb 27, 2011; reference link.
  4. Big Bang Art: Do I Seem Bulletproof To You? by wanttobeatree, dated June 26, 2008. (Accessed 12 Nov 2011) WebCite
  5. Artwork for her 2011 Calendar Wallpaper Project by petite madame dated July 29, 2011. (Accessed 12 Nov 2011) WebCite.