Either they are going to be friends, or one is intending to attack the other.

The wonderful thing about stories is that they can contain many sorts of unlikely friendships like predators and prey being the best of buddies and never wondering how the other might taste. For example, there’s the friendship of the lion and the tuna (plus his school of friends who can construct a breathing aparatus out of kelp) from “The Other Guys” that you would have to pause if you want to attempt to catch all the jokes and references. There’s the homunculus and the forest brownie from Dragon Rider by Cornelia Funke (admittedly, they were at each other’s throats at first. But they did become buddies in the end!) Here are a couple other examples:

  • Tommy and Petra in The Calder Game by Blue Balliette (though admittedly, their friendship was a little bit inevitable seeing as they both had Calder as a friend).
  • Lord Umber and the woman in charge of his accounts (though she is more like a terrifying aquaintance you don’t want to talk to) from Happenstance Found by P.W. Catanese.
  • Twig and the Banderbear (reading the description you’d have thought it would tear him apart as soon as it saw him or at least impaled him on its tusks when he pulled that bad tooth out) from Beyond the Deepwoods by Paul Stewart.

My point is that even though some of my above examples weren’t very good (I had some good ones, but I couldn’t remember the title or character names which annoys me) you can get away with highly unusual friendships in stories. Heck, Kendra Kandlestar and the unger who actually turned out to be ________ managed to strike a friendship that was so endearing and yet so frustrating at times that you love it and remember it forever! By the way, that example was taken from Kendra Kandlestar and the Door to Unger by Lee Edward Fodi. Ratchet Ringtail is definitely my favorite character out of those books!

You have to wonder where good authors get some of these ideas. Some seem obvious from the start and others are less obvious but guessable. I find some seem completely impossible but still end up happening. How do authors write those sorts of things? How are they able to choose the right words that will convey the characters of the pair/group, in such a way that they’ll be utterly lovable (in one of the many definitions of lovable) and also thoroughly memorable?

How would you make an unlikely friendship (one that doesn’t revolve around lovestruck werewolves and glittery vampires deciding “Hey! You ain’t half bad!”)?  Personally, I’d make a situation where a light elf and a dark elf were forced to work together. They’re supposed to be opposites right! It wouldn’t be a romance setting so “opposites attract” wouldn’t apply. Another example of unusual friendships would perhaps be a griffin and a horse, seeing as they’re enemies (can you believe that hippogriffs were supposed to be just a ‘scholarly joke’?) It wouldn’t exactly be original, but hey! It could happen … right?

Post Script: One more highly unlikely friendship would be myself and a chicken. How I love their wings and not in an I-want-to-pet-you-way!

What is one of the more unlikely pairings you have created or read that made an impression on you?


Seeing as I’m still working through all the topic suggestions my awesome Aunt is suggesting (AAC shall be a tag, standing for Awesome Aunt Content that shall be used at the same time as another new tag: meow) I shall be using the AAS (Awesome Aunt Suggestions) tag so that she can look at all the posts she inspired :D So now I actually have to tell the masses (a.k.a. those who jump on the currently tiny bandwagon. Note: don’t fall off) what this post is about: that would be animals. To be precise, talking to animals. So the question (or questions) is this: If you could talk to an animal for a day, which animal would you choose, why would you choose it, and what in the heck would you talk about?

Here below I put my own answer.

For me, I find choosing one animal I’d like to be able to talk to for a day is a problematic thing. Mainly because I have to think about whether or not that animal might attack me if I get too close (I am not thinking about talking to zoo animals) and then there’s the problem of getting an inter-dimensional passport or a time machine. If I could only choose one that I’ve actually seen…. then I’d choose the heron, because I think they’re amazing and I’d like to know what it’s like to be a heron and what they do all day. If it could be a forest animal, I’d definitely choose the wolf (I think of it as a forest animal at least) because they are one of my favorite animals and we’d talk about what the life of a wolf is like…. from a wolf’s perspective, not a human one.

If I could choose a safari animal, then it’s either a lion or a a tiger. Reasons for that are obvious. For birds, I’d like to talk to a raven so that I could ask one if it would like to stay with me. Like a friend who drops in occasionally and is fed and given a warm place to stay when it’s raining, provided they don’t make a mess. For ocean animals, I’d like to talk to either a blue whale, a killer whale, a shark of some sort, or a seahorse. For monkey’s I’d like to talk to a gorilla and for dogs I’d like to talk to either an Irish Wolfhound, or an Azawakh.

And if we’re talking myths…. well most of the ones I like are able to speak english (by various physics defying means) so this question is a tough one. Hmm…. adlets. I don’t know if they can talk or not (in my story they can, they just don’t actually do it that much) but I don’t think they can. I’d choose them because A) They’re cool, B) They’re my current favorite myth, C) I repeat reason A, and D) I would like to be able to have some actual facts to use in my story that I could say were given to me by an actual adlet.

Now, if I was Dr. Doolittle and could talk to ALL of these creatures… I’d have probably fainted already. And not from the danger, oh no…. I’d have fainted from the hyperventilating and the excitement!