The current poll on Bitten By Books is Who's Your Favorite Paranormal Couple? There are 3 couples there that I love to bits, but the answer was really easy for me. Rose and Dimitri, from Richelle Mead's Vampire Academy series. Bella and Edward from Twilight are currently (shock) leading the board, though they only over took today, two days in. They are not one of my favorite couples. Rose and Dimitri were leading for a while and I really hope they take their place back. However, as with most things, the poll got me thinking about why I love them so much, and why I chose them over other favorite characters, Kelley Armstrong's Elena and Clay, and Rachel Vincent's Faythe and Marc. So forgive me while I indulge myself in getting in to it on here so it's clearer than in my head.
First, Edward and Bella. This is not a healthy relationship. To be with him she lies to her dad and her friends, she pulls away from real life and gives up her humanity to be with him. I'm sorry, I do actually like the series, but I don't love it. I don't think it deserves the hype it's gotten. It's just not that good. Bella is willing to change who she is to be with a guy, and that shouldn't happen. I don't think she should be lying to everyone around her in order to be with him.
Elena and Clay. Plenty of people will say they shouldn't be together, he's too possessive and it makes it a bad relationship. I don't think this is true. And I don't think he's that bad. He worships the ground she walks on. He would die for her in a heartbeat. He gave her the year in Toronto so she could figure out for herself that being with him was right, making himself miserable in the process. He may not be happy about it, but he does let her go and do her work elsewhere and take trips without him. He knows she capable of defending herself and doesn't try to protect her in that way. Their relationship is flawed, they fight, really badly at times, but it keeps it real. It's not straight forward and simple and easy. And I really love that.
Faythe and Marc. Again, a flawed relationship, but they love each other and they're willing to work at their problems to make things better. Faythe left Marc at the alter and when she returns home after 5 years, he still lets her know he loves her. He gave her the time and space at college in the hope she'd come back to him. Instead she's forced back and has to make the best of the situation. She realises that actually, she does still love him, but she's unwilling to just give in to him. There are outside forces at work to keep them apart as well, and they have to try and over come them. Marc is fiercely jealous and has serious anger management issues, and Faythe, being the strong willed cat she is, hates it. But they'll try and make it work regardless.
Rose and Dimitri. Oh man. Where to start. Okay, he's 7 years older than her, 24 to her 17. She's his student. They are meant to protect a Moroi Princess, Lissa, Rose's best friend, and not be thinking about each other. So, so many reasons why this relationship shouldn't work. But it does. And I love it. I think part of the reason is that I love Rose and Dimitri individually as well. They're strong characters and they don't rely on the other to survive. They're individuals as well. Dimitri falls for Rose early on after meeting her, but it doesn't change a whole lot. He trains her just as hard as he promised to, he doesn't show anything in the way of favoritism, and he doesn't hide the bad stuff from her. He doesn't try and protect her from anything. He's still trying to teach her to be the best Guardian for Lissa she can be, and succeeding. Rose doesn't spend all her time mooning over him, and their lack of relationship, sure she doesn't like it, but she's fairly willing to accept it. Shadow Kiss changes things and they spend a lot more time together, getting closer and closer. But it doesn't change how they work. It doesn't stop Rose from thinking about other things and it doesn't interfere with their duty. But they're willing to put the other first when they have to. I would love to talk about more, but I won't give away the major Shadow Kiss spoilers here. Not til I've read Blood Promise anyway.
Main theme here? Flawed, not all consuming relationships. I like something with realness to it. Twilight is romance with vampires thrown in, and maybe lying to parents about a guy is real, but voluntarily dying to be with him? Sorry can't go with that. I would love to see Rose and Dimitri win the poll for their decidedly complicated, flawed, not all consuming and yet loving relationship, and there was a glimpse as to why.
I'll stop boring you all now and go back to my closet to carry on reading The Host. Odd book. But okay so far.