Okaydokey. The Eliza story.
I'm not going to put it in Bad_Penny or anything, as it's less wank and more my hard lesson learned about fandom. I don't have LJ entries or anything about it, since this all happened RL but at the very least it'll be a good story? I dunno.
Eliza Diawna Snape ran a site listing 'The Very Best In Fanfiction', including of course Cassie's stuff along with all the other BNFs of the day. Looking back, in truth very little was supergreat. Sly's chessmaster story was still one of the best Ron-fics ever written, IMHO but a lot of it was merely stuff that everyone had heard of. Naturally, Eliza's stuff was at the top.
I have to admit, I lied to her at the start. In an email I complimented her story, even though I hadn't read it, in a blatent idiotic attempt to get on the damn site. I wanted readers, and I wanted feedback. I figured if I could get my stuff on that list, I could get out there. Looking back I'm downright ashamed of it, but at least I got my comuppance before the end of the story. To this day, I still haven't even come close to making it through a chapter of Harry Potter and the Story of Eliza.
Eliza (Her real name is Elizabeth, but she insisted on being called Eliza or Beth,) emailed me back, saying that the story wasn't good enough. I was pissed, but I kept trying until eventually it came out that I lived in the Seattle area. She did too, and wanted to meet me. I figured it was no big deal, and we met one day at my apartment at the time. A year later, she told me she had a knife on her 'in case any funny stuff happened'. In hindsight, that should have creeped me out, but at the time I figured she was just being cautious. Seattle isn't Detroit, but safety first.
From that time she introduced me to her other friends locally. Slytherin Dragon and Spam were the other main 'cast-members', although from the beginning I was struck at how much more normal they were than Eliza. She couldn't go literally two minutes without having to talk about 'her world', and we'd all joke about the muses talking to us in our heads.
It was only later that I realized she wasn't joking.
The first major breach in the 'normal' wall around Eliza was our trip to see the first Harry Potter movie at one of the local theaters. We weren't going to the Cinerama, which is downtown and where most of Seattle's major premeres were, just to a small one in Northgate. Still, she insisted on wearing her 'I Am Eliza Diawna Snape' shirt, which she had drawn on with marker (She had also worn this shirt when I met her the first time). When no one 'recognized' her, as she expected, she pouted most the night and was a big pain in the butt. It should have been a hint, but we passed it aside.
Eliza came from a very strictly religious home. I myself come from a reasonably conservative Christian home, but there was something very different about their form of religion. She had been homeschooled, and even though her younger sister was very normal and well adjusted, Eliza seemed to have a terminal case of social backwardness. She'd insist on wearing things that were too big or raggidy, and a bunch of other just weird clothes that you might see Trewlany wear in the movies, but were very odd draped around an 18 year old girl. But what was really strange was how staged it all felt. While Spam was an admitted daughter of a hippie, determined to follow in her mother's footsteps, Eliza was trying to fit into a mold she had designed for herself, and spilled over the edges.
From the first time I met Spam with Eliza at a Starbucks, it was painfully obvious the crush that Eliza had on her. Spam still is one of the most vivacious, lively, wonderful people I've ever met, and it was no surprise that the free-spirited gypsy type appealed to the repressed, conservatively raised Eliza. She refused to even entertain the possiblity that she might be attracted to a female though, and that's where the trouble started.
She fixated on Spam, demanding to spend time with us whenever Spam or I would suggest just going out together, or with Sly. All of it just seemed like silly jealousy of an awkward nerd, until Eliza started threatening me for taking up too much of Spam's time. One night, after a party/drinky fest at my apartment, I woke up to see Eliza drawing Spam in her sleep. I have had a stalker point a gun at my face, and I can still safely call this incident the creepiest of my lifetime.
She also started to write fics incorporating Spam's original character, Lorna Doors. She made up a Gary Stu, as was her forte, that was so obviously herself, to sleep with Lorna, and eventually brought him into the roleplaying game we all played in, Magic and Muggles. That game welcomed well thought out original characters, and while in retrospect, a lot where sue-ish, it was a great deal of fun for everyone who played. When it started, anyway.
Magic & Muggles was my first roleplaying game, and with around 600 canon and original characters, there was always something to do. We kept Eliza's 'Snape's Twin Daughters' out of the picture, but for the most part we went nuts with OCs. In the days before OotP and canon was more defined, we could go nuts with things. Unfortunately, so could Eliza.
Eventually, she monopolized all of Spam's characters, and the few ones that other people had with Spam wound up being run off by Eliza's other characters. Eventually, both her in game and out of game behavior wound up forcing the mods to kick her out of the game, as well as their apartment, where they had let her stay.
Radar and Sly were roomies in Bothell, and when Eliza had come to them with a sob story about her parents trying to take away her internet, etc for no good reason, they let her stay with them. It was a 2 bedroom, and where Eliza slept was effectively the dining room. It became clear that the reason her mom was threatening to cut off Eliza's priviliages was not 'because of no reason', but rather the fact she wouldn't get out of bed before two in the afternoon, do anything but roleplay, and refused to get a job. She pulled the exact same stuff on Sly and Radar, and eventually wound up back at her parents.
At the same time, her cyber and otherwise stalking of Spam had gotten to the point where the mods (which by this time included myself) of Magic and Muggles decided that they had to ask her to leave the game as well. It was relatively quiet for wank, although looking back we probably could have been kinder about it all. There was a part of us that wanted to believe Eliza was sick, not just taking us all for a ride.
For a few weeks, nothing happened. I moved to a new apartment, where we once again could have fun drinky nights without fear, and the circle of Seattle Fen grew a bit. Everyone was happy, and things went back to as normal as they get in fandom.
Then I got a call from Eliza. I shouldn't have answered the phone, but I did feel bad for how things went down. So I agreed to meet her, giving her my new address. She came over, and for awhile it seemed like she had learned how inappropriate her behavior was. Then she casually mentioned Magic and Muggles, and asked how we'd worked around her characters.
I explained that a lot was just retconned, and people had moved on to different plots. She asked about Spam's characters, and I deferred. Then I told her about one of the characters, who was now in a homosexual relationship.
She feigned a perfect catatonic state for about two hours. I say feigned, because there's some things you just can't get right, and they didn't fool me. Still, I couldn't get her off my couch until I threatened to call the police. She made a few vague threats, and from that moment I wouldn't answer the phone anymore.
For a few months, I got random notes on my car, packages of 'stuff' left around my lenai, claiming she was giving it back but had never been mine in the first place, as well as hang-ups on my hardline without caller id. I wouldn't answer that line after awhile. Spam, Radar and Sly all were harrased the same way, as I understand.
Eventually, her family moved, and her with them as I understood. I learned very much the hard way that trying to 'big' in fandom was just not worth it.