Revenge for What?
|Title:||Revenge for What?|
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"Revenge for What?" is a somewhat discursive story of How One Revolution Ended and Another Began, unusually for a 5th season story, focussing not on Avon (who doesn't appear till half way through) or Vila (who doesn't appear till later than that) or Blake (who's dead eleven years before it starts) but on Soolin, Jenna, Dee Tarrant (yup, his sister), and a wholly unexpected clone.There are a couple of unexplained inconsistencies, probably deriving from lack of authorial revision, but on the whole well-plotted and reasonably snappy dialogue. I've always liked Soolin, and it's nice to see her character more thoroughly explored than usual. The only truly odd thing is that it's not what I would classify as any kind of slash - or slish, slush, or slosh.
I resent it. I resent the fact that when I write an adventure-packed fifth-season story it has to get printed in a slash, not a mainstream zine, because incidentally I make it clear in the story that Soolin and Dayna were lovers, that Avon and Vila were lovers, and that Jenna and her engineer, a woman called Dee, are lovers. I wonder if it would have been segregated if I had suggested that Soolin and Tarrant were lovers, Avon and Vila were celibate, and made Jenna's engineer-a man? If, in short, I had made it an action-packed adventure with a slish background, instead of a slash background? 
Reactions and Reviews
One of my favorite B7 slash stories was "Revenge for What" by Jane Carnall. It was in Southern Lights Special 4.5 -- my very first B7 slash zine (she adds in a sweetly nostalgic tone of, um, type). It's one of my favorite B7 stories and I think it's definitely my favorite Jane Carnall stories. I always read it and think at the end, "Gosh, I wish there was more"--and recognise right after how smart she was not to write a sequel. It's non-explicit. My one and only complaint about it is one that I have had with a few others by Jane: Absolutely everyone is gay! The only person who was explicitly not was Blake who was a jerk and flaked out over Jenna and Dee.
While all of these stories have their parallels in m/m slash, the remaining seven stories more closely resemble the sub-genre of B7 gen stories that focuses on developments in the emotional relationships between the male characters - for example, Susan Lovett's 'The Road to Hell' (A-B) or Lillian Shepherd's 'The Haunting of Haderon' (A-V). Jane Carnall's 'Changing' and its sequel 'Revenge for What?' establish the basic paradigm. <...> The second story is a Girls' Own Adventure version of the traditional quest story, where Jenna and Dee gather up Soolin, Cally's clone descendant Calida, Avon and Vila, before setting off on a new 'career of blowing up Federation bases'.
- from the review of Southern Lights #4.5 by Jane Carnall in The Unique Touch #2
- Jane Carnall in the editorial of the The Unique Touch #2
- from Michelle Christian on Virgule-L, quoted with permission (July 3, 1996)
- This story was discussed in (Re)Making Space for Women: A guide to f/f slash in Blake's 7 fanzines, an essay by Nova (2002)