Friday, August 21, 2009

Same Time Next Year by socat

This week's Perv Pack Recommendation is...

Title: Same Time Next Year
Author: socat
Chapters: 21(complete)
Words: 76,278
Reviews: 489
Summary: Edward and Bella meet year after year, same place and time, escaping from their lives and the people in it. What happens as the years go by? Will something come between them, bringing their ritual to an end? A/H, OOC

Guest Reviewer - Ironic Twist

Same Time Next Year
is the story that convinced my husband I have an online boyfriend. He was on vacation and couldn’t understand my desire to stay glued to the computer screen when I could be glued to him instead. What can I say? If I find the draw of a good story magical how can I resist the pull of one that leaves good so far behind that the details stick with me through my (shortened) night’s sleep and wake with me in the morning?

Same time Next Year is this kind of story. And, as with many amazing stories, STNY starts with a simple premise with which everyone is familiar –

Boy meets girl.

Boy loses girl.

Boy finds girl again… and again… and again… and – well, you get the picture.

Author, socact, takes the age old paradigm and turns it on its ear in delightful tale that will heat you up, make you laugh and induce enough heartfail to keep you crying through the night.

She begins her story by apologizing to the reader. “The idea isn’t original,” she tells us. She worries that we’ll find the concept “dumb.” Nothing could be further from the truth. Even readers who are familiar with the stage or screen version of Same Time Next Year will delight in this adaptation which starts at the end and ends in a way that will have you immediately wanting to reread.

Current day (and I don’t mean this in a metaphorical sense, the first day of the story is August 13, 2009) Edward Cullen is your typical high school senior: angsty, bored, itching to escape the “doormats” of high school. He doesn’t see how his life can begin until he escapes the “shitty, claustrophobic hell hole” that is Forks. He’s too aware of the relationships between his friends, the already paired up Emmett and Rosalie and the awkward singles, Jasper and Alice. The freakishly insightful Jasper has a plan for the Senior Class Trip (also known as “the fuckfest”) to Vancouver Island. He’s hoping that a little game of musical bedrooms will allow him the opportunity to finally seal the deal with the willing but undeclared Alice.

Key to this plan, of course, is Bella Swan. Bella is the new girl and Alice’s assigned roommate for the weekend. From the moment Bella steps onto the bus, tripping on the top step to faceplant in the aisle, Edward is captivated, “…this girl was fucking magnetic. She had some kind of freaky power over me and it was starting to piss me off.” Ever the rebel, Edward wants to ignore the new girl and resents her increasing power over this thoughts and feelings.

Similarly, Bella has no interest in Edward. She has him pegged just moments after meeting him. “You’re the doctor’s son. Wealthy, spoiled, bored with life. You’re tired of Forks and you know you can do better. And you will, I’m sure. You’re probably at the top of the class.” Edward rallies but is honest enough with himself to admit that while two can play at this game, Bella is winning.

At this point in my review you’re probably wondering if I’ve forgotten the title of this blog. No, I haven’t. I’m reviewing for the Perv Pack’s Smut Shack. So, where’s the smut? Well, I figured I’d wait you make as long as Bella and Edward do in this story.

STNY is really a short story, when it comes right down to it. The buildup is slow and steady. Establishing the groundwork for the relationship is key to creating the tension and framework for the second half. If you’re looking for fluff or wham, bam, thank ya’ ma’am, there’s plenty to be found in fanficdom. This story is not it.

That’s not to say it is without its many moments! Bella’s first time doesn’t happen until chapter 9, but it is worth the wait. Due to typical teenage nonsense, which socact kindly doesn’t force us to read through, it takes them months to finally decide that they belong together. Once they do we learn that, much like canon Bella and Edward, she’s the sexual aggressor in their relationship. Edward has managed to placate her with his “truly divine talent… for using his tongue in certain places.”

It’s been a year since our protagonists have met and they’ve returned to the resort on Vancouver Island to spend some quality time together. Bella and Edward are heading off to college; he to California, she in Washington. Neither is looking forward to their forced separation. During their time together at the resort they promise to “see [each other] here once a year, every year, this time, this place.”

I find it fairly amazing that socact was able to keep me so invested in these characters with the cards laid out on the table as they are. Basically, Bella and Edward agree to yearly booty calls, “No matter what we’re doing, who we’re with, where we are.” That’s right – this is planned infidelity, folks, plain and simple. Neither is so naïve to believe that their relationship, their love, can survive the 1000 miles between them, but neither is willing to give it up.

Yet there’s beauty in their illicit meetings. Throughout the years each panics that this will be the year the other doesn’t show. According to their agreement, “if one of us doesn’t come some year, then that’ll be it.” However, year after year they both arrive and sexy times ensue. We’re treated to bedroom sex, blow jobs in the shower, sex in the public dining room and up against a tree. Each year they delight us and each other with their abiding passion

Hints are dropped during these rendezvous; hints that let you know that the outside world is intruding. She’s in a serious relationship. He enters a relationship with someone special. And then it finally happens; Bella knows that something is wrong, “As soon as I saw his face, standing there in the dark, familiar room, I knew something was different… His eyes were anxious, uncertain; was he nervous? Upset?” Finally he utters the words readers will be dreading:

“How long have we been coming here?” he asked me in a low, strained voice.

“Eight years,” I murmured.

“Have you ever regretted coming here?”

“No,” I said, almost in a whisper. “Never.”

“Is there anything that would make you stop coming here?” he asked.

I finally looked up into his emerald eyes, those same ones I had fallen in love with seven years ago. I tried to find an answer there, to understand what he was thinking, why he was torturing me this way. And I knew the answer to his question; it was automatic, and always had been. Nothing could make me stop coming here to see him. Nothing.

“No,” I said.

Again, he ran his hand through his tousled bronze hair, exhaling sharply.

“Nothing?” he asked.

“No,” I said, slightly more loudly. My voice was shaking so hard that I knew just one more word would break it.


My heart broke into a million pieces. I cried. The knowledge I had of their illicit relationship had been like having a titillating secret, but now I regretted being invested in their HEA. The sex high I had been on for chapters was deflated and I read the rest of the story in tears. I had kept on hoping they’d find a way to be together. I kept going back, looking for hidden meanings, assurances that everything would be alright. I didn’t find them.

Surprisingly, this is not the end of their tête-à-têtes. If possible the following year is more heart rendering as they both discuss their happiness with their respective spouses after making love to one another. Despite the heartfail, or maybe because of it, Same Time Next Year is probably my favorite fanfiction period. I’ve recapped the story for just about anyone who will listen and that is something I never do. I believe that readers familiar with other incarnations of the story will appreciate socact’s treatment. For those, like myself, who were unfamiliar with the play and movie every step will put you through the emotional wringer. Trust me when I tell you that you will be rereading when you reach the end.

PS – socact posted an outtake to this story. DO NOT READ THE OUTTAKE. You’ll regret it. It will still be there when you’ve finished the story. Promise!

Bri- All I have to say is that if it weren't for the PP rec's I would miss out on a lot of great fics! I hadn't even heard of this story when I saw it on our rec list. Reading the summary, I was intrigued, albeit a little apprehensive, what with the "Romance/Angst" category it is labeled as. So, I did what any true Wussperv would do. I skipped ahead and read the a/n at the end. *giggle*

The author says in the beginning that this wasn't a unique storyline, but I beg to differ. I thought it was incredibly unique - at least in the fanfic world. The way she progressed the characters was done very well, from being slightly immature, horny teenagers to being slightly more mature, horny adults. *snort*

This is definitely a story that follows the "plot with a dash of smut" lines. The sexin' is there, but it's not the main focus and it's not talked about in detail, but we can get the gist of what's going down (yes, I meant it like that).

I will say...being a Wussperv, I felt that there was quite a bit of angst in the story. And, sometimes it felt a bit unnecessary. The way socat weaved the story was done so to deceive and thus the angst was there - and heavy. Fortunately, I was a sneaky h00r and read ahead to the very last chapter and got the dealio on the sitch. Still, it didn't make some of the angst easy to take.

The last chapter was very sweet and sort of rectified the entire fic...explaining the hows and whys to each chapter. And, it ended on a very high note, which is always a plus.

Bottom line - if you like the angst, read it. If you hate the angst, read the a/n at the end and then give it a go. It's a very easy read - took only a few hours to get it done - and it's complete! I'd give this story a 4/5.

Emily-I am so glad this was the rec this week. I did not have much time to read but this story sort of wormed itself into my brain and I found myself finding time to read it. Reading on my phone at the stop light, while waiting at the deli counter for my sandwich, etc. It is a easy read but that is not to say it is not a complex story because it is. I am not a wussperv so the angst did not bother me and Socat weaves it beautifully within the confines of the story structure.

I like how the smut changes over time and evolves, it grows with Edward and Bella. I mean sex as a teenager and sex as an adult are entirely different. Even though we only get one weekend out of each year for 10 years you can feel the intense chemistry with E/B.

I did not read the A/N at the end until I was done with the story and I am not going to spoil for those who have not read STNY yet but Socat did a good job of keeping me guessing. I admit I guessed right but it was fun to theorize as I read each chapter. 4/5

Emmy- I must say, if I had had to read this incomplete... ? I would have fucking died... Seriously *I* would not have coped.. Yes my wussperv is that extreme... Like my honourable friends *coughsnort-athonourable-coughsnort* Bri & Nina, I too had to read the a/n at the very end..... ooopsies...

I really enjoyed this fic. Stephie, had been harping on about this story & how good it was for eons, but I kept putting it off, my wee pussy heart trembled at the thought of the angst... But fucking hell its great!! The writing is beautiful, slightly mysterious.. (I ADORE MYSTERIOUS WRITING!! Its my fave thing [almost ;) ]The story is unique and interesting and her layout and style is a brilliant addition to the plot device..

The lemons are hot but also emotional and heartfelt... So they are so much more than just first time sexing and then reunion sexing... I love the implicit intimacy between the pair that is revealed.. and the myriad of emotions that they experience together as they make sense of their separations and reunions..

I love what an absorbing read this story is too.. I started it and although there are 17chapters or so I had it finished within a couple of hours... Each chapter and reunion sucks you into the next... Brilliant! I really enjoyed this story - particularly enjoying the substance behind the lemons and how Socat manages to play so nicely with us all......

4 out of 5 holiday knickers from yours truly for Same Time Next Year...

Kathy- Like the other ladies, I'd never seen this premise in a fic before. When Steph sent an email to the PP with the description, I was skeptical. What? Same time every year? What about all the in-between times?! Surely I'd miss those. I also wondered if there was some sort of cheating, which would imply lying and guilt and open a whole new ball of wax and issues I don't generally like to read about in FanFic.

I'll be upfront and honest; I decided to give this story a chance for one chapter. Most of you know my 3-5 chapter rule, but I was having a busy week and frustrated with reading what felt like the same story over and over.

The first chapter begins in the year 2019, and ends on a cliffhanger. There's a call at the reception desk for Bella – from her husband. It drove me completely mad. I had to know... WHO was her husband!? The story was cleverly written from the start, and very clean writing with little to no errors.

Each chapter contains the kind of plot-writing I would love to lose myself in on a daily basis. All of the original six characters appear. The author lays the groundwork and foundation nicely with seven full chapters of their first weekend. You learn who these characters are and really see them clearly. From there, she typically covers the following year in a single chapter, but sometimes they are spread across two.

Over the years, we grow to know and love Edward and Bella. The story begins with Bella as a virgin, and you see their first experience together. It's lines like these (from chapter 9) that fucking OWN me:

Wordlessly, he found a different rhythm that was frenzied, intense, and hot as all hell. He was making love to me, which I felt in the way he looked at me, touched me, kissed me. But he was fucking me, too, and I liked it. A lot.

MMPH. Seriously, the lemons throughout this story are just so fucking hot to me. As Bella and Edward change and grow, so do their private moments. For me, the emo cranked up at chapter 12, and never let go.

To say that I devoured this story is a vast understatement. I sat at my desk, glued to the computer, clicking chapter after chapter. Unlike Nina and Bri, even if you are a Wussperv, I HIGHLY recommend that you do not skip ahead and spoil the ending! Snot sob with me, people – it is so fucking worth it. I'm not even exaggerating when I say I climbed into the steamiest shower I could stand and let the tears flow. I bawled, and bawled, and cried again re-reading to refresh my memory about bits and pieces. 5 panties for the smexin' and 10 tissue boxes.

Nina- I like Bri, had to read the explanatory A/N at the end because like her, I'm a total wuss and knowing an integral part of the equation was necessary for me to be able to read it sober. Yes, I am that bad. So bite me.

Stephie is the socat cheerleader if there every was one. She fawned over this story and told us we HAD to read it and I'm so profoundly grateful she pushed us to. It's such an exceptional story, a unique idea and oh yeah, great smut.

I'm not going to lie, the story is a bit confusing with the timeline but being a fan of fucking with the readers with wacky timeframes, I was sure to pay close attention to the details. You need to keep in mind that it's intentionally a mindfuck and a great one in my opinion. socat does a wonderful job of keeping you on the edge, yes it's angst and yes it hurts but I'll tell you what. The outcome had me in tears. It was perfect and I loved every last bit of it.

Yes, I cheated in order to get through the angst but fuck off, I'm a sissy. Now, the sexing isn't overly graphic, but it's there and it's so wonderful fitting with plot and context of the story that if she had done it in any other way, I wouldn't have appreciated it as much. That's one of the main things I enjoy/admire about the story and socat's style is that it's very well done and handled perfectly.

All in all it's a great story, chock full of everything and the icing on the ficcake is that it's complete. 4/5 from moi

Stephie- I'm doing this shit early. Like hella early. Because I know if I don't, I will forget. And that would be a fucking travesty. socact is basically one hot piece of author. I won't lie, I totally fangirl over her stuff. If you recall, I rec'd her story Save You for my getting to know the pp piece. At the time I hadn't read Same Time Next Year. However, after chatting with MsKathy about how epic it was, I dove right in, neglecting other stories (including my own)

Same Time Next Year is a story that follows Bella and Edward from the first day they meet, a field trip for the students at a little island, throughout their yearly meetings, until the present day. What I love most about STNY is Edward. Hell, I love socat's Edward a whole fucking lot. He's kind of an ass. A hot ass no less. His initial reaction to Bella is that of annoyance, though you can probably guess it's because there is some attraction lurking. Throughout their stay on that first encounter, there are several instances where I just want them to touch, kiss, get the point.


Anonymous said...

So is Same Time Next Year a real book???

Carrie said...

So I'm such a wusssperv I had to read the A/N at the end before reading any of the story-just the idea of it out there broke my little wuss heart.

Kay A. Ess said...

I'm wondering if the wusspervs or just the impatient, are sorry they read the AN before reading the story. It does change your perception greatly. I don't think I would have enjoyed it as much if I'd read the AN or the outtake first.

antiaol said...

Nope, I'm not sorry at all. If I didn't read it before hand, I wouldn't have enjoyed the story as much...too worried about the angst.