College freshman Liv is more than just a fangirl: The Starveil movies are her life… So, when her favorite character, Captain Matt Spartan, is killed off at the end of the last movie, Liv Just. Can’t. Deal.
Tired of sitting in her room sobbing, Liv decides to launch an online campaign to bring her beloved hero back to life. With the help of her best friend, Xander, actor and steampunk cosplayer extraordinaire, she creates #SpartanSurvived, a campaign to ignite the fandom. But as her online life succeeds beyond her wildest dreams, Liv is forced to balance that with the pressures of school, her mother’s disapproval, and her (mostly nonexistent and entirely traumatic) romantic life. A trip to DragonCon with Xander might be exactly what she needs to figure out what she really wants.
Spartan Forum, 2:15 a.m.
New thread, topic: Spartan Rescue Mission
ATTN: All members of the Starveil Rebellion. Many of you have heard that Captain Matt Spartan, commander of the Star Freighter Elysium, has been reported missing in action. Surveillance footage from the final escape pod shows the Elysium being destroyed, but in the last hours, there have been multiple reports of an unidentified transceiver messaging in the Omega Quadrant.
We need you, soldiers. Spartan needs you. Look for evidence. Find reports, word-of-mouth testimony, footage if you can. If we have any hope of finding Spartan alive, it will come down to your ingenuity and determination. This rescue message must spread far and wide. Post your findings on all fandom platforms using the hashtag: #SpartanSurvived
THIS IS YOUR CALL TO ACTION.
Liv chewed her lower lip, rereading the text once and again. Leaving a post like this on one of the busiest Starveil forums was a call to arms. It was so outrageous—so arrogant—she couldn’t doubt the potential for ridicule. Trolls loved tearing apart things like this. And if they decided to start flaming her post, they’d burn her idea down to the ground. But if she didn’t post it, she’d never know.
Her fingers drummed on the armrest. Post or not. That was a big question.
Liv lifted her phone, scrolling through her texts. There was one from Joanne. It had arrived while she was out with Xander.
@JoesWoes: So upset over that stupid ending, Liv. How do you get over losing a character you love? Spartan’s REAL to me. He’s my baby, you know? 😦
Liv did know. He was her baby, too. He was everyone’s! And by killing off the character, they’d wounded an entire community of fans. She reread Joe’s text, her finger hovering over Reply for a long moment.
She set the phone down again.
Her gaze darted back to the computer screen. THIS IS YOUR CALL TO ACTION. If she posted this, it needed to be real. She needed people to believe Spartan could come back. They needed to trust that he’d made it out of the ship. It couldn’t just be fangirl to fangirl, writing Starveil AUs that never really happened. This would be the guerrilla warfare of character ships. The fans would have to reweave the details they had into a new explanation of those last seconds of film. They’d take no prisoners, leave no wounded fans behind. But, as in any war, that meant the intel behind the revolution had to stay secret for as long as possible.
Fandom had to believe.
Liv released her breath, heart beating in her temple. It’s up to you to make your happy ending.
She hit Post.
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Danika Stone is an author, artist, and educator who discovered a passion for writing fiction while in the throes of her Masters thesis. A self-declared bibliophile, Danika now writes novels for both adults (The Intaglio Series and Ctrl Z) and teens (Icarus and All the Feels). When not writing, Danika can be found hiking in the Rockies, planning grand adventures, and spending far too much time online. She lives with her husband, three sons, and a houseful of imaginary characters in a windy corner of Alberta, Canada.
The first book in Danika’s upcoming Tathagata series (Edge of Wild) was selected as a quarter-finalist in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel of the Year Award (2013). Edge of Wild (Stonehouse CA) will be released March 2016. Danika’s YA novel, All the Feels (Macmillan US), will be released June 2016.
Ms. Stone is represented by Morty Mint of Mint Literary Agency.