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Favorite sneezing/illness-related tropes in fiction?


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So, as the title says, which are your favorite illness or sneezing related tropes in fiction? I personally like it when (female for me) characters look physically messed up by a cold, the flu or motion sickness - When they look pale or green, messed-up hair, circles under the eyes, etc. It makes my "caretaking" instincts kick in, but it also has to do with how it reveals another side to the characters. But I also like story beats like the illness bringing characters closer to each other or the character fighting through the illness.  

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Oh gosh, so many tropes I love... Like catching a cold from being out in the rain/cold too long, even if I know it doesn't really happen like that in real life. There's something so adorable about the character being vulnerable in the cold. I also like the "working through the cold" thing where the character has to do something and can't let the cold stop them, but a friend or a loved one keeps telling them to rest instead.

I also like a red nose from sneezing/blowing too much, and when the character is all wrapped up in a cozy blanket as they move around, and a thick scarf around their neck if they have a sore throat.

There are also tons of care-taking tropes that really hit all my buttons like concerned looks, blessing with a surprised or concerned intonation, offering a tissue/handkerchief, feeling the forehead and commenting on a fever, being protective over the sick character, etc.. And tea. I don't know why, these past few months I've had a soft spot for characters with a cold drinking a cup of steaming tea, or being offered one. It's just so cozy and seems like such a perfect way to warm up and feel better when you're sick.

So. Many. Tropes. :lol:


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Oh yeah, I love characters being offered tea or being given something to recover. Like Lupin giving out chocolate in the Harry Potter books.  Hot tea or chocolate fits the bill, there's always something comfortable about seeing the characters get warmed-up or recover that way, maybe because it's so relatable. I love drinking hot tea or chocolate. 

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Hmm...I think something in the contagion category is my personal favorite.  The old "Caretaker Reversal" or a cold spreading across a group of roommate/friends is always good.

Somebody unknowingly using something a sick person just did, like a cup or a phone's good, too.

Somebody who knows they're doomed trying to not get sick.

Somebody going out for the sick person and getting them supplies, only to come down with it themselves.

Even somebody just hanging out with the sick person so they won't be lonely, only to succumb to the plague themselves works.

Reading/watching as a person slowly gets sicker and sicker as the cold progresses works for me too.

Having a tissues pile up as the person gets sicker also helps just sell how tired the sick person is feeling for me.

A sick person getting more congested and unintelligible as they cold goes along.

There're probably a lot of them, lol.

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