World AIDS Day

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Zine
Title: World AIDS Day
Publisher: In Person Press
Editor:
Author(s): April Valentine
Cover Artist(s): April Valentine
Illustrator(s):
Date(s): August 2000
Medium: print
Size:
Genre: slash
Fandom: The Sentinel
Language: English
External Links: story at 852 Prospect
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Worlds AIDS Day is a 93-page slash novel by April Valentine. It is a charity zine with proceeds going to an HIV positive support group.

Art samples are included on Fanlore with the publisher's permission.

Summaries

From the publisher: "Nominated for a STIFfie Award! "World AIDS Day" by April Valentine. It's World AIDS Day and Blair Sandburg has come to the conclusion that he must tell his partner he's fallen in love with him. When he does, Blair learns that Jim feels the same way about him. The two men make love and Blair goes to the university the next day thinking everything about his life is perfect. Then he gets the phone call that could shatter all his dreams. Warnings: Angst, m/m sex, possible disease diagnosis. Rating: NC-17, J/B THIS IS NOT A DEATH STORY!!! @100 pages, comb bound, color cover."

From the distributor, "Jim and Blair must deal with their relationship, and the threat of the deadly virus striking close to home. Not a death story, but deals with the reality of AIDS."

From the Editorial

The fanzine you hold in your hands represents a departure for me. For the first time ever I have written a story about the work I have engaged in for the past 14 years, HIV/AIDS counseling and testing and case management. I have always wanted to write about this subject but until now did not want to merge fan universes with the all too real universe of HIV/AIDS, nor did I want to write a Mary Sue story. Finally, with the characters in The Sentinel, living in today's world and facing today's problems of safe sex, sexual orientation, disclosure and HIV testing, I decided to write this story. Don't be afraid to read it. It has a happy ending - for everyone.

The story is set between December, 1998 and December, 1999, however I do not refer to any canon events of the Sentinel universe.

A portion of the cost of this fanzine will go to the support of my HIV positive support group, Horizons. Thank you for your purchase. And please, always be safe.

SPOILER from the Publisher's Flyer

Warning: Do NOT read if you don't want to have the plot of the story or the outcome spoiled! Yes, "World AIDS Day" does concern itself with the possibility of characters being positive for HIV, the virus which causes AIDS. In the story, Blair declares his love for Jim and learns Jim feels the same way. they make love that night, without using a condom. (reasons for this revealed in the story.) The next day while in his office at the University, Blair gets a call from a guy named Ron Hughes. Six years ago, Blair had sex with Ron and has had mixed feelings about the experience ever since. Ron's call is distressing — he informs Blair that he's tested positive for HIV and in fact could have been positive six years ago when he had sex with Blair. Ron wants Blair to get tested. Blair is terrified, realizing that if Ron infected him six years go, he could have infected Jim last night. He doesn't know what to do and is afraid to tell Jim before he knows anything for sure. Blair finds a clinic where he can get tested. It will take a week before his results are in. Blair's test is negative! He couldn't have infected Jim, so Jim is all right too. Jim finds out about Blair having been with Ron in the past. Everything works out fine. There's angst, yes, but there is a happy, disease and death free ending to the story. Trust me. <g>

Reactions and Reviews

During news-coverage about "World AIDS Day" Blair Sandburg, sitting alone in the loft, is forced to rethink his life and his feelings for his partner, Jim Ellison, with whom he had fallen in love. He finally decides to tell the other man, but when Jim finally comes home, the movie "Philadelphia" is playing on TV, it turns out that the Sentinel has finally come to the same conclusions as his guide. A night of passion and love cements the new bond between the men, gives them a glimpse of forever being in each others arms. Literally the next day a phone call shatters and destroys the newly found happiness of Blair Sandburg; an old friend and former lover is calling with devastating news. Having been tested positive the young man tries to contact people he might have infected, urging them to get tested themselves.

Blair looks at the remains of his life: Has he in one wonderful night destroyed the love of his life by making love to his Sentinel? Has he contracted the disease? What would have happened had his friend called 24 hours earlier...

He copes the only way he knows how: He turns away from Jim, isolates himself. Torn between his very real fear of AIDS and Jim's growing desperation at the thought that Blair has had second thoughts about their commitment, he tries to find a way out.

It's April Valentine - gotta love it - 'nuff said! Or maybe not: Follow her as she gives Blair and Jim life; as she, without being preachy, manages to drive her point home: Use Protection, Get Tested. For 14 years April has worked in HIV/AIDS counseling, testing and management. She knows - as first hand as a healthy person can - how to deal with that terrible plague.

This zine is not only very well written (and the sex in it is hot as hell - and there is lots of it! grin) it also catches the mood of a grave topic without being depressing. This story is also about living with AIDS. [1]

References

  1. Destinies Entwined, accessed 3.28.2011