Wednesday, October 31, 2012

My Fictional Fling

By Tracy Kiely

Mr. Darcy
 Knowing my love for Jane Austen, particularly Pride and Prejudice and Persuasion, you might think that my fictional dream fling would be either with Mr. Darcy or Captain Wentworth. After all, both are pretty swoon worthy, and both have left many a young woman secretly hoping that one day she would meet her own modern-day equivalent of Fitzwilliam or Frederick. However, the very reasons these men are so beloved – their innate decency, honesty, and loyalty – makes having a fling with either of these men unthinkable. Would a man who uttered the words “Dearest, loveliest Elizabeth,” be capable
Captain Wentworth
of having a cheap fling? No.  Nor would one who proclaimed, “A man does not recover from such a devotion of the heart to such a woman! He ought not; he does not.” You might as well tell me to have a fling with Hercule Poirot – after all he’s decent, honest, and loyal, too.
"Order and method, mon ami!"
Okay, now my mind has just created the most horribly hysterical scene of Poirot in bed with a woman. He would fuss over the quality of the sheets, the size of the pillows, making sure that everything was just so. I can see him muttering about order and method as he smooths down his waxy mustache. Oh, god, now he’s talking about his little gray cells…aghhhh! make it stop!    
Okay. Sorry about that. Let’s pretend that didn’t happen.
In fact, the only two men in Pride and Prejudice and Persuasion who would be amenable to having a fling – George Wickham and Mr. Elliot – are the very kind of men that one wouldn’t want to be with – unless one wanted to expose themselves to whatever STDs were rampant during the Regency Period. And if I have to engage in some kind of Jasper Fforde, Thursday Next time travel where Z-packs are non-existent, I’m not going to hop into bed with a known womanizer.
So that pretty much eliminates any of Austen’s heroes.
I considered the modern-day updates to her work – specifically, Bridget Jones’ Diary. Mark Darcy is out for the same reasons cited for the original Mr. Darcy – he’s too nice – but Daniel Clever might be fun. He’s clever, witty, and handsome, and I’d still have access to modern-day medical treatments should the need arise. But at the end of the day, Daniel is not a nice man.
So, he’s out.   
My next thought was Eric Northman, Charlene Harris’ sexy bad boy vampire from her True Blood series. Eric is definitely the kind of guy who would be amenable to a fling, but since he’s a vampire I’m pretty sure that he’s free of all those pesky STDs as he’s…well, um, dead.  Plus, he’s full of V (vampire blood), which according to Ms. Harris, does wonderful things when bestowed on humans. It makes their skin glow and their hair shine. It also makes them stronger and faster and more alert. And I definitely could use all of those enhancements right about now. And, if you would have asked me this question last year, I probably would have gone with Eric. However, HBO ruined last season’s True Blood with this stupid subplot involving Sookie having a three-way with Eric and Bill. I haven’t felt the same about Eric since.
So, he’s out.  
Seriously, is this supposed to be this hard? Am I over thinking this?  
I guess my problem is the fling (well, that and some weird, unrealized fixation about STDs; honestly, where did that come from?). The fictional men I harbored crushes on wouldn’t have a fling. They’d pine and love from afar and be decent and write lovely letters…and wow, never get a date in high school.  I guess that’s the rub – these men send young girls hearts fluttering because their stories are all the vexations of romance and courtship with ultimately a happy ending – sex doesn’t come into the picture.
Which, for some heroes, is how it should be.
Speaking of which. Hercule just popped back into my head. I can see his egg-shaped head peering above the sheets on his perfectly made bed. “Order and method, mon ami, order and method,” his accented voice purrs as he leans in, his waxy mustache quivering with anticipation…
Hey - everyone deserves at least one good scare on Halloween. That image is yours. Enjoy!    


Jamie Freveletti said...

Hi Tracy! Loved this post(and of couse just seeing that photo of Mr. Darcy made me swoon) but I agree the reason we love these characters is because they have very high standards for themselves!

Catriona McPherson said...

I'm with you, Tracy. I can't have real-life Hollywood crushes either: by the time I weed out overweaning egos, brainpower so low in wattage if you were to point he'd look at your finger, variety pack religions inc MMR vaccine nuts and anyone who dumped their first wife for a model . . . that leaves Matt Damon who A. is married and B. looks like a potato.

Sue Ann Jaffarian said...

I wish I'd read this last night because now my day will be haunted by the image of Hercule attempting a fussy horizontal mambo with god-knows-who, certainly not me! Frankly, I'd like a shot at Colin Firth's Mr. Darcy. Nice men need sex too, and I'll bet a fling with him would not require antibiotics. Great post!

Bridget said...

Two words: Ewan McGregor.