Posted in Rule 63, Short Fiction, The Sentinel

tBS: A Guide’s Place

The Big Short

Title: A Guide’s Place
Prompt: escape
Characters/Pairings: female Blair Sandburg/Jim Ellison, Sentinel cast, OC
Genre: genderbend, Sentinels/Guides, asswhooping
Word Count: 872
Warnings: I will genderbend all your characters, especially if fandom likes to make them a 12-year-old girl. And I will make them a badass woman. And you can’t stop me.
Author’s Note: I really need to stop listening to old recordings of Keira’s podcast while I’m writing at two a.m. because this is what happens. Also, I’m not sorry, and I will probably do it again. Blair is often made into a weeping, emotional figure — a ‘girl with a dick’ — so I took Keira’s advice. If you want to write Blair as a girl, go ahead — and write him as a kick ass girl. So, here is Blair as a kick ass girl.

Synopsis: All Blair had going for her was three feet of wild curls, too much courage and stubbornness to fit in a body twice her size, an Alpha Guide’s empathy, and her brain.

“You going to go something about that?” Simon asked him calmly, pointing to the tableau in the bullpen.

Jim Ellison examined the scene before him: two people faced off, one calm and amused, the other aggressive. It was by no means a fair fight.

“Don’t pick on him too badly, Guide,” he told Blair.

The woman smiled at him, then turned back to her unknowing victim. The uniformed cop stood a full foot taller than his short, stocky guide. He was armed, trained in hand to hand combat, and closer to Jim’s age than Blair’s, and an experienced officer. All Blair had going for her was three feet of wild curls, too much courage and stubbornness to fit in a body twice her size, an Alpha Guide’s empathy, and her brain.

Really, it was almost bullying. Jim should probably be ashamed of himself for looking forward to it.

The whole squad room watched avidly; Blair had only appeared a month ago, newly bonded to Jim, a female academic and a guide thrust into law enforcement and paired with a detective with a bad attitude and a loner’s reputation. An Alpha Guide, a Shaman, and an enigma.

“Let’s discuss your assertion of my ‘place’ shall we, Sergeant Wilcox.”

The officer frowned mightily. The look made drunken assholes cower and harden criminals reconsider their life choices. Blair just beamed. “I’m just saying, Sandburg, that you need to learn how things work around here. You’re a civilian and a guide.”

“I am, indeed, both those things, though not limited by them.”

Wilcox glowered. “You’re job is to help Ellison do his job.”

“I think Rainier University might argue with that, but let’s grant your premise. How is visiting the records room and pulling the case files Jim needs not helping him do his job.”

“You’re supposed to help him as a guide helps a sentinel.”

Blair rocked back on her heels. “I see. Are you a sentinel or a guide, Sergeant?”

“Of course not.”

“Then, how do you know what a sentinel requires of a guide?”

The man looked a little baffled. “Everyone knows that guides help a sentinel with their senses.”

“Ah, I think we’ve found the source of our divergence.” Blair’s hands moved in emphasis with her words. “Jim is a detective, who is also a sentinel. Not a sentinel, who happens to be a detective. You aren’t alone in your confusion, actually; it’s a common misconception to lose sight of the person for their gifts. I tend to blame the post-war era — there were a great deal of education campaigns that essentially rebranded Sentinels and Guides for peacetime, and they tended to overemphasize the value of a sentinel’s senses.”

“You saying his senses aren’t that useful?”

“Of course not! But, and this is a big one, they are as useful as the person who wields them. It’s the human element that makes a sentinel’s senses so powerful a tool — otherwise, modern technology would be able to replace them. But that’s another conversation.” Blair bounced a little. “Now, I have a very pragmatic question for you — you appear to be a practical sort of guy, I think — if my only role here is to help Jim with his senses, what should I do when he isn’t in the field?”

Wilcox frowned. “What do you mean?”

“Come on, man, you’re a cop. I’ve only been here a month, and I can tell you that law enforcement actually rivals academia in the amount of paper and bureaucracy it generates. How many hours a week do you think he spends at a desk, writing reports or making phone calls? Exactly,” she nodded. “So — either I can only be around during the busy times — which means that every time Jim goes in the field, he’d have to drive by Rainier — or I spend a lot of time around here. You realize the department pays me, right? So, should I be marking papers and doing research on the department’s time — or being useful to my sentinel in a manner that doesn’t require empathy?”

The officer frowned. “Why do you even have another job, anyway? You’re a bonded guide.”

“Well, since my sole function to Jim should be as a walking, talking control mechanism — maybe I’m attempting to find fulfillment in my own right? Or, maybe, I spent half my life accumulating the training and experience to teach and research at a university? You know, there’s a reason that the Civil Rights Movement included guides, right? And that a lot of the laws and social mores it challenged for guides were very similar to the ones that feminists faced.”

Wilcox stared down at her for a moment, then glanced over at Jim. “Translation,” he said dryly, “she’s a person, not an object; please don’t treat her like one.”

“He’s a work in progress,” Blair told Simon, “but so far, he’s been quite trainable.”

“We talking about the same man, here?”

“To be fair, Captain — all you can do is give him more paperwork as a punishment.”

“I don’t want to know,” Simon growled. To Wilcox he offered a chance to escape further humiliation, “Officer, I think you’re done here.”     

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Author:

I have spent more time in fandom than in real life in the last decade. I'd offer cookies and a speech about joining the dark side, but if you found me here you've probably drunk the kool-aid already.

4 thoughts on “tBS: A Guide’s Place

  1. Oh this was fantastic! I love how Jim ought he should be a little ashamed of himself for enjoying the officer trying to face down Blair only to slam into a person with a magnificent case of Sass and Kiss My Ass.

    Thanks
    Jen

  2. This is brilliant! I know the concept of these stories means that it is complete as is, but it would be awesome if the spirit ever more established you to write a combined prequel and sequel to this little gem. Thanks for sharing your talent.

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