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Bird by Bird by laceymcbain (Pg-13)

Title: Bird by Bird
Fandom: DCU Comics(Batfamily)
Pairing: Gen
Categories: Action/Adventure, Family, Hurt/Comfort
Length: Medium (18k)
Warnings: Medical Issues/Descriptions of Blood

Author on LJ: laceymcbain
Website: laceymcbain

Summary: Bullets, knives, a three story fall, even a fucking crowbar hadn't managed to keep Jason down permanently, but Dick Grayson (and the rest of his "family") was going to kill him with kindness.

Review: Jason Todd is one of my favorite characters. And this is a great Jason centric story. With a little bit of action/adventure and a lot of feels. It's really awesome to see him reconnect with the rest of the Bat!family on such a good note.

I also love Dick and Damian in this. Dick is such a great big brother and Damian is such an angry kitten of a Robin.

Bird by Bird
Podfic
Title: Go Home, Tell of My Arrival
Fandom: Haven
Pairing: Duke Crocker/Nathan Wuornos, Audrey Parker/Duke Crocker/Nathan Wuornos
Categories: action/adventure, drama, threesome, slash, supernatural
Length: long, 21,984 words
Warnings: none.

Author on Livejournal: black_eyedgirl
Author Website: BlackEyedGirl on AO3

Summary: "Six months ago, Audrey went away. Nathan sent Duke away. And the Troubles went away.
Except for Nathan’s."

Review: Duke comes stumbling up the stairs onto the deck and for a long moment all Nathan feels is the bitter taste of adrenaline going to waste. Duke is in pants but no shirt, an expanse of skin that didn’t lose his tan in all the months away. There are little bruises on his chest that Nathan didn’t notice on any report. He steps forward to look at them. Duke holds him off with one hand. “Personal space, Nathan.”

“What are these?”

“Bruises, I guess. Maybe I fell when I turned up on the beach, I don’t remember.”

There are ten bruises, eight roughly circular and two ovals where his ribs meet. “It looks like handprints.”


This is one of those canon divergent AUs written in happier times, off the back of the season 2/season 3 endings, of the "Audrey disappears and comes back different" variety, that being something which in those innocent days was not quite so ironic~. BlackEyedGirl has written a handful of excellent fics in this fandom, but this one is definitely the most epic, and its scope and focus makes it a fic that might help to fill the hole for those of us still looking for alternate scenarios and endings to those offered by canon. Although it has my name snuck into the author note as a beta reader, all I can remember doing is moving some punctuation around, so I think it's a fair call to select this one to rec on those bases.

This is set after the big ending to season 3 where everything went to Hell. Written prior to season 4, it's a scenario where Nathan gets to keep his job. Duke gets spat out by the magical Barn first and a good deal of the fic covers a developing Duke/Nathan relationship before Audrey, too, lands among them again with a new persona.

Generally, well-written, shippy and much more feel-good than the places canon ultimately went.

Go Home, Tell of My Arrival

Adornment by whitedatura (PG)

Title: Adornment
Fandom: Maleficent
Pairing: Diaval/Maleficent, Aurora/Phillip
Categories/Genres: Post-Canon, Fluff, Romance
Length: Long (21924 words)
Warnings: N/A

Author on LJ: N/A
Author Website: whitedatura

Summary:

After Aurora's coronation, Maleficent gives Diaval a gift for his years of service and tells him to go find happiness. He leaves. She might've phrased it differently if she'd known he'd take her so literally. Autumn and winter pass, as seasons do, and Maleficent finds herself in possession of a growing number of raven feathers. Meanwhile, Diaval discovers that roaming the countryside as a dragon is not without consequences.

Review:

It's hard not to enjoy a good dose of melodrama in romance, but where many would lean more heavily on the drama than the melo, whitedatura's crisp pacing and clever writing keeps the pining from bogging down the story while imbuing enough emotional complexity in the characters to give richness and body to the fic. whitedatura also goes out of their way to show off the many facets of Maleficent and Diaval's characters, some of which go overlooked even in the canon itself.

If you're looking at the word count and expecting a plot, you'll be disappointed. But the fic certainly doesn't suffer for lack of major machinations. It's a romance, through and through, and an easy, well-crafted read for anyone looking for a sizeable chunk of fluff to sink their teeth into.

Adornment

Pretty the World by chaila (G)

Title: Pretty the World
Fandom: Supergirl (TV)
Pairing: James/Kara
Categories: vid, fluff, romance
Length: 3:37
Warnings: none

Creator on DW: [personal profile] chaila
Creator Website: n/a

Summary:Kara/James romance vid set to "Pretty the World" by Matt Nathanson


Review: Super glossy and well edited vid for the first 10 or so episodes of Supergirl that does a perfect job of highlighting the different layers to Kara's character. there are some super fun scenes that also tell the story of what these two mean to each other and how their relationship grows and why they are so good for each other. It's definitely not just an interesting look at the heroine, but also at James and how he perceives the world and Supergirl/Kara.

The song is very well chosen and captures the mood of the show and also focuses on the lighter early notes of this pairing.

Pretty the World

The Best Defence by JoIsBishMyoga (PG-13)

Title: The Best Defence
Fandom: Harry Potter / Yu Yu Hakusho
Pairing: Gen
Categories: Crossover, AU, Friendship,
Length:  Super-Epic (205 000 words)
Warnings:

Author on LJ: joisbishmyoga
Author Website: AO3 ff.net tumblr

Author’s Summary:
In the wake of Cedric Diggory's death, after another Dark Tournament in Japan, Koenma discovers problems in the Wizarding World. Who to send but his team, undercover and under false pretenses? New magic and new companionships, as the Reikai Tantei are set loose on Hogwarts.

(This story was written and plotted before the publication of Order of the Phoenix, and will not include Horcruxes, Hallows, etc. It is AU after Goblet of Fire.)

Review:

This fic is based on possibly the most common Harry Potter crossover premise; the crossover series' characters attending Hogwarts in the hope of eventually fighting Voldemort. The set-up for this form of crossover is almost always interesting to me, but The Best Defence evokes the visceral wonder of early Harry Potter especially well, despite being about characters who are more jaded than Harry.

It follows up with complex original plot, with events occurring spread out over the whole year. The descriptions conjure up vivid impressions of night-time corridors and shopping bustle, changing weather and school celebrations. Little details of place and attitude are scattered through, insightful and fitting the two canons in a very satisfying manner. (The downside of this is that when the story clashes with my impressions, through differing headcanon or lacking details revealed in later books, it can be quite jarring. I don't usuallly get so invested in fic.)

I particularly like the characters of Draco, Hiei and Kurama, who get considerable focus. Draco is canny about politics as well as the bullying brat of canon. Hiei is embroiled in an internal war about whether to let himself reach out to others. Kurama is experienced, smart and ruthless, but also frequently hampered by his own pride, perfectionism and plots.

The main flaws of The Best Defence are that it's not very accessible to people not familiar with both canons and that it has about as many unresolved plot threads as any Harry Potter book, but the sequel is abandoned.

The Best Defence (AO3)
Alternate Version on LJ
Podfic by Opalsong
Title: Hamartia (the hero's fatal flaw)
Fandom: Person of Interest
Pairing: Harold Finch/John Reese
Categories/Genres: Case file, Drama, Domestic, Action/Adventure, Romance, Fluff, Kids
Length: Long (15280 words)
Warnings: Homophobia, Death of a major villain character (per canon at the time of the writing of the fic)

Author on LJ: astolat
Author Website: astolat

Summary:

"We're not looking to make friends, Harold," John said. "We want our neighbors to classify us and then avoid us. Being the scandalous gay couple down the street is a good option."

Review:

With Person of Interest heading into its final season, I figured it's been long enough since my last rec of one of astolat's fic to rec yet another of their remarkable POI fics. Not to mention, Hamartia is long overdue a rec.

astolat brings back a familiar face from Season 1 of the series. Leila, now grown into a rambunctious toddler, has been targeted by Root to be used as leverage against Finch in a bid to gain control of The Machine. Finch and Reese take Leila out of New York to disappear for a while, and in the meanwhile, discover the particular trials and tribulations of parenthood.

Though the plot of the fic has been thoroughly jossed by successive seasons, the story is still an excellent read for the hilarity of Leila's shenanigans and Reese's fumbling steps into fatherhood. The romantic subplot is almost incidental to the domestic adventures of Leila's new makeshift family, but what really draws me in for reread after reread is astolat's keen understanding of Reese's character through the entire ordeal.

Hamartia (the hero's fatal flaw)

Starry City Sky by lilacsigil (Teen)

Title: Starry City Sky
Fandom: Marvel (Comics)
Pairing: America Chavez/Kamala Khan
Categories: Fluff, Humor, Romance
Length: Medium (5414 words)
Warnings: none

Author on LJ: lilacsigil
Author Website: lilacsigil’s AO3

Summary: Kamala is the protector of Jersey City (especially around the high school.)
America is an interdimensional teleporter (but it's not working too well right now.)
Together they fight crime!


Review: This is one of those little pieces that is just so well written and so much fun, that even with the rarepair it just pulls you in. The POW of Kamala works very well for the story and also is written very in character. There’s all the chaos you’d expect from the life of the new Ms Marvel.

There’s something cute and very fluffy about this, but there is also something very in character about the flirting and the kiss that just works very well.

Starry City Sky
Title: A Certain Level of Comfort
Fandom: The Martian
Pairing: Chris Beck/Beth Johanssen/Mark Watney
Categories: Domestic, Fluff, Friendship, Post-Canon
Length: Short (3k)
Warnings:

Author on LJ: often_adamanta
Website: Ao3

Summary: Mark doesn't wear those clothes all the time, just when he's anxious or had a nightmare.

Review: Warm, fluffy, and tooth-rotteningly domestic. This is the perfect post-canon comfort fic. With Mark coming back to earth and discovering parts of himself that he didn't know existed. Finding support in Beck and Johanssen and a new home as well.

It won't make much sense if you haven't read the book or watched the movie, but if you have please do give it a try.

A Certain Level of Comfort
Title: Drawing Lines in the Sand
Fandom: Alex Verus series - Benedict Jacka
Pairing: gen
Categories: action/adventure, drama, dark (ish), supernatural
Length: medium, 12,940 words
Warnings: rated 'mature' on the blood-and-death level stakes, I think. Author warns for minor character deaths.

Author on Livejournal: n/a?
Author Website: sprl1199 on AO3

Summary: After the events of Veiled, Alex is doing fairly well: he's still not sure what Richard is up to, but he has his friends around him, and in general life is moving along comfortably.

That changes.

Review: “...you don't need luck. You never have. That’s the thing I like best about you, Alex. You’re a survivor. You purport to have lines, but you keep redrawing them. I never know how far you'll go.” He paused at the door, pinning me in place with the clarity of his gaze and a small pleased smile that did nothing to lighten his eyes. “And neither do you.”

Continuing the run of books fandom recs lately with something that's not from an established books fandom -- in fact, it's the only Alex Verus fic on AO3, and I got ridiculously excited this morning when I accidentally found it, having been aware that the fandom was listed in Yuletide this year but then didn't fall into the draw of assignment arrangements and nothing got produced.

I love these books for the challenge of presenting the story through the eyes of a character who can see how events will spiral out in advance of the decisions he makes, so it's definitely the twisty aspects I appreciate best, and this story manages to capture that twistyness, especially in the second half. I was less certain reading the opening stages, because there are some references in there that to my Brit eyes are decidedly non-British, and the first scene feels awkward to me, but I would say it redeems itself thoroughly with its handling of the ending and the central premise, which nail the darker aspects of characterisation and series that are so interesting.

Drawing Lines in the Sand

taller than giants by seventhswan (PG)

Title: taller than giants
Fandom: Check, Please!
Pairing: Eric Bittle/Jack Zimmermann
Categories/Genres: Alternate Universe, Genderbend, Romance, Pining
Length: Medium (12171 words)
Warnings: Misogynistic speech from TV hosts toward a female athlete

Author on LJ: N/A
Author Website: seventhswan

Summary:

When Erica Bittle first introduces herself to Jack she has a blueberry pie in her hands, and uses the word “y’all” apparently unironically. She’s tiny, her long golden hair tied up in a ponytail with a gingham ribbon like she’s on her way to debutante brunch. Her oven mitts have little apples printed all over them, and she smells like vanilla sugar, although Jack isn’t sure she’s even used any on the pie.

She might be an alien.

Review:

In this AU where the Samwell Mens Hockey Team is the Samwell Womens Hockey Team, there's a curious reversal of canon where, rather than Eric Bittle being so sure that Jack Zimmermann is straight, Jack Zimmermann (female) is utterly convinced that Erica Bittle is straight. Shitty naturally sets Jack 'straight' on her assumptions, but it's an interesting juxtaposition nonetheless. But as canon!Bitty before her, the assumption of heterosexuality certainly doesn't stop Jack from having feelings she doesn't comprehend for the bulk of the story.

seventhswan is loyal to the canon characterizations in spite of the gender swap. Jack is awkward, and Bitty is as sunny as ever. Shitty makes it her personal mission to wear as little clothing as possible. The rest of the regular cast make appearances in the fic, even Johnson the Metaphysical Goalie, who happily provides a plot device at a critical moment.

It does bother me that Erica Bittle is for some reason even worse with being checked than her canonical male counterpart, and Shitty's heterosexuality is rewritten as homosexuality for the sake of preserving the character's canonical feelings toward Lardo, but overall seventhswan recreates the characters in their new setting with admirable precision.

taller than giants

The Healing Arts by writerstealth (Teen)

Title:The Healing Arts
Fandom: Star Trek: The Next Generation
Pairing: Beverly Crusher/Deanna Troi
Categories: Romance, Secret established relationship, Coming Out, Fluff
Length: Medium [5490 words]
Warnings: none

Author on LJ: n/a
Author Website: writerstealth‘s AO3

Summary:Beverly Crusher wasn’t an empath, but she didn’t need to be told that Deanna needed to have her hair released from its pins, needed to be gently undressed, needed to be quietly held. Deanna was so much smaller than Bev that she was almost always little spoon, and she lay for a long, silent stretch with Beverly’s long frame curled around her. Deanna felt herself ease into her, relaxing, healing.
“I love you,” she sighed after a long while.
“I know.”


Review: This is just such a happy, fluffy good feel fic that is incredibly well written and that hits every happy bone in my body. The plot unfolds quietly and without any big crisis and still there is profound growth and realization along the way. And that final starog just rounds it off as a perfect happy fic that I can get back to whenever I want to feel good.

I love the characterization and the subdued background buzzle of normal Enterprise life that adds so much detail and depth to this little tail.

The Healing Arts
Title: Twenty-Year Man
Fandom: Vorkosigan Saga - Lois McMaster Bujold
Pairing: Ivan Vorpatril/Byerly Vorrutyer
Categories: slash, action/adventure, drama, political, post-canon/futurefic
Length: long, 24,908 words
Warnings: non consensual drug use

Author on Livejournal: ellen_fremedon
Author Website: ellen_fremedon on AO3

Summary: Lord Ivan Vorpatril and Byerly Vorrutyer, making Vorbarr Sultana safe for (highly limited experiments in) democracy.

Review: "Looks like they're pulling in everyone who was at Vortashpula's last night." Lecoq grinned; he was even more apolitical than Ivan, and wouldn't have been caught dead at a campaign event. "Heard you treated everyone there to your thoughts on civic governance. Never suspected we were harboring a political genius in our midst." He pitched the last sentence to carry, and several passers-by stopped in the doorway to agree that Ivan had, in fact, shared a great many keen political insights. Not all of them had been at the party.

"Yeah, well. If that's what passes for genius these days, the state is doomed." It had the twin virtues of being true, and not particularly funny, and that was the end of it.

Or an end; Ivan kept having the same conversation at intervals all day.


This is fantastic. Sometimes I feel a bit of a fraud reccing something that is clearly this popular, instead of seeking out hidden gems, but it hasn't been recced here before and since it virtually gives the impression it could've been written by Bujold herself, recced it is getting.

It's time for Ivan Vorpatril - nearing 20 years of service and no longer a young man - to grow up, is the contention of this fic, which embarks on a quest to make him do just that. A new drug that also functions as a truth serum at a party outs him as not being as politically dumb as he's pretended to be all these years... and also to Byerly, who's trying to run damage control and pack him off home, as harbouring a crush that he'd never normally act upon because of his internalized homophobia.

The latter thread almost gets lost at times beneath the avalanche of politicking plottiness, which has a distinctly Bujoldish edge of irreverence in the novel approach to vote fixing, but just in case you missed the slashiness, it definitely delivers toward the end (er, I had a paragraph here expanding on that but I'm not honestly sure how nsfw I can get on a main post here so... um yes, hot), and in fact the missteps and twists of the romance itself also spin out in rather Bujoldish fashion through the story.

Twenty-Year Man
Title: Ratios and Relevance
Fandom: James Bond
Pairing: James Bond/Q
Categories/Genres: Alternate Universe, Crossover, Angst, Drama, Romance
Length: Medium (11101 words)
Warnings: N/A

Author on LJ: dhampir_72, wyomingnot
Author Website: dhampir72
Author Website: wyomingnot

Summary:

You are being watched.

The government has a secret system, a machine that spies on you every hour of every day.

I know because I built it.

Review:

As a long time fan of both James Bond and Person of Interest, you cannot imagine how utterly gobsmacked I was to discover this crossover. Bond and Q fit shockingly well into the roles of Harold Finch and John Reese, their respective quirks and histories lining up so naturally that I'm ashamed of myself for never having thought of it before.

dhampir72 revamps the Person of Interest pilot quite thoroughly within the James Bond universe, bending some elements of the film canon to suit the needs of James' version of John Reese's backstory. Even the most casual fan of the show will recognize dialogue taken straight from the pilot, but dhampir72 does occasionally rearrange and recreate scenes to keep it from being too close a copy. Elements of later seasons of the show are combined with locations and characters from the James Bond canon in a well blended mix that rewards those who have watched the show, though no knowledge of it is required to understand the story.

Included is wyomingnot's video, a fanvid set within the crossover universe.

Ratios and Relevance
Title: one day, we'll get nostalgic for disaster
Fandom: The Flash (TV)
Pairing: Caitlin Snow/Iris West
Categories: AU, Romance
Length: Long [17297 words]
Warnings: none

Author on LJ: n/a
Author Website: celaenos' AO3

Summary:The first words that Caitlin Snow ever say to Iris are, “I need you to urinate in this.” (Or, au where Iris West is The Flash.)


Review:
I love these kinds of AUs where the girl ends up being in the male heroes shoes. This is one enticing story and one amazingly well written AU where Iris West ends up becoming the Flash instead of Barry. Essentially it's a retelling of season one but with the dazzling twists and turns that come with putting Iris into the role of protagonist and hero.

It's wonderful to see her figure out her powers, her life, the feelings she has for Barry, and fall in love with Caitlin.

Absolutely a recommended read.

one day, we'll get nostalgic for disaster

Only Begotten by Astolat (R)


Title: Only Begotten
Fandom: Lucifer (TV) /Damien(TV)
Pairing: Lucifer Morningstar/Damien Thorn; Damien Thorn/Amani Golkar/Simone Baptiste
Categories: Crossover, Dark, Family, Friends, Romance
Length: 10k
Warnings: Mentions of Suicide, Religious Ideology, Incest, mentions of past rape

Author on LJ: astolat
Website: A03

Summary: “Detective, when the Antichrist does make his grand entrance, which I assure you I’d have to know about well in advance, he won’t be killing people one by one,” Lucifer said dismissively.

Review: This is a crossover between the tv shows Lucifer and Damien. I've only watched Lucifer, but Astolat ' s characterization is so solid for the characters from that show, I'm sure her Damien voice is equally solid.

Despite the darkness of the two shows involved the fic is very sweet and heart warming. Mostly revolving around Damien and Lucifer shared need for someone that won't die out and leave them.

Only Begotten
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Short: under 2,000 words
Medium: 2,000-15,000 words
Long: 15,000-40,000 words
Epic: 40,000-100,000 words
Super Epic: 100,000+ words

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