[identity profile] jjpor.livejournal.com
Well, these two weeks have gone by just as quickly as they usually do, which is to say in a flash, and my reccing stint is nearly over. I didn't get the chance to post as many recs as I would have liked, but I hope there'll be a next time to remedy that. In the meantime, allow me to leave you with this excellent fic:

Story: Nor Grave Nor Bed Denied
Author: LizBee and Branwyn
Rating: Teen
Word Count: 2,343
Author's Summary: In the wake of the destruction of Skaro, Romana receives a visitor.
Characters/Pairings: Romana II, The Doctor (7th)
Warnings: None

Recced because: As you may have noticed only the other day, I remain as obsessed by Doctor/Romana as I ever have been, and by that murky period between Survival and Rose which presumably led up to the Time War and which may or may not have been accurately depicted in the 90s novels. This ticks all of those boxes, as well as hinting strongly at Seven/Romana, which as far as I'm concerned is second only to Four/Romana in terms of being right up my fannish alley. ...so to speak.

This fic also takes its lead from the audio story The Apocalypse Element, with which you may or may not be familiar (it's very good, btw, if you ever get the chance to listen). I don't think you need to be to work out very quickly what the backstory is. In some ways not knowing and going only on the hints provided in the fic makes Seven and Romana's somewhat difficult conversation here even more strained and effective. And what a conversation it is; I love the way the two characters are portrayed here, both older and wiser and more damaged than they were in their heyday together, still with that connection but with so much pain and baggage by now to go with it. I think there's an understandable tendency in fanfic to idealise the character relationships that appeal to us and to disregard the fact that real relationships, however idyllic, invariably have their ups and downs and messy patches. This treatment of the Doctor and Romana is all the more commendable for not falling into the trap while also clearly having a lot of affection for both characters and their shared history.

There may be a hint of the far more difficult relationship the Doctor and Romana had in the EDA novels, which isn't one of my favourite choices that those novels made, but even that shows and honesty and willingness to face up to the less comfortable part of Who "canon" that adds to the strength of the story. Most of all, they are portrayed as two characters who are at the point in their association where they cannot fool each other at all, however much they might want to, and who are both well aware of that fact.

All this and numerous little nods to various bits of Who lore established in several different versions of continuity. You may know by now that I'm a sucker for that sort of thing and prepared to award all the bonus points to anything that acknowledges the weirdness that is LOOOMS!

So once again I urge to you head over to the Teaspoon post haste and read this rather spiffing fic, and then to be sure to leave words of appreciation for the author. And that, for now, is my work here done.


An Excerpt )
ext_23799: (seven likes tea and books)
[identity profile] aralias.livejournal.com
Story: ceremony for the living
Author: Branwyn
Rating: All ages
Word Count: 1370
Author's Summary: The Doctor attends his own funeral.
Characters/Pairings: Seven, Ace, mentions of Benny
Warnings: NA canon (not necessary to understanding)

Recced because: I love the summary - that's brilliant. Another way of looking at that central conceit - the seventh Doctor eavesdrops on a conversation someone is having with him - shows it to be equally brilliant. He doesn't say anything, but he thinks many things and these are all exquisitely expressed: one of my favourite parts is below, but there are other really striking metaphors peppered throughout the story. The Doctor's prose is cool and lyrical, while the only dialogue is Ace's. Ace is a woman of short sentences and strong, very expressed emotion - her stuff stands out strikingly and rawly from the prose. It's very well done: a dialogue without two speakers. The conclusion is not unexpected, but that isn't the point - it still needed to be said.

Excerpt:

Time Lords know precisely what awaits them after death, which is to say, more death, and some life, and then nothing. Still, a seasoned traveler has to give some thought to the notion of cosmic balance, a reckoning of sorts. He wonders how, if some entirely hypothetical god were to weigh his soul now, whether he or she or it would consider the equally hypothetical unity of which his many personalities have been mere fractures, or if each chapter of his life is a story in itself, justified (or not) by its own conclusions.




As part of [livejournal.com profile] pod_aware I have recorded yesterday's rec, Operator, Operator, which can be downloaded here. I hope to, with each author's permission, record all my recs this week (posting them a day after the rec). Sound quality is variable - as is quality of Doctor impression (both vary between not good and not bad). I apologise but hope you enjoy.
[identity profile] roachpatrol.livejournal.com

Story: Dead Worlds
Author: Branwyn
Rating: All Ages
Word Count: 1057
Author's Summary: Lucy Saxon lives in the TARDIS now, and finds that one mad alien is much like another.
Characters/Pairings: Lucy Saxon, the Doctor, references to the Master.
Warnings: darkfic

Recced because: Dead Worlds is a creepy, creepy, creepy look at the Doctor's darker side, which canon often seems to only glance at in flashes and then forget as quickly as possible. But the Doctor isn't human, and he isn't particularly sane, either, and this fic lingers over that in a very haunting way.

excerpt... )
[identity profile] ghost2.livejournal.com
Story: with her own wings
Author: Branwyn
Rating: All Ages
Word Count: 1859
Author's Summary: Martha was once the Doctor's maid. Now the Doctor seems to have become Martha's secretary.
Characters/Pairings: Tenth Doctor, Martha Jones, Francine Jones, Tish Jones
Warnings: none

Recced because: So, it's after Last of the Time Lords and Martha has left the TARDIS. However, the Doctor still has her mobile. His conversations with the people who phone looking for Martha are humorous, as well as poignant. My favorite bit is the part where he gives her friend Vicky some unsolicited advice.
[identity profile] silly-cleo.livejournal.com
Story: A Mutual Understanding
Author: Branwyn
Rating: All Ages
Word Count: 325
Author's Summary: "Doctor," says Romana, "I have a feeling."
Characters/Pairings: Fourth Doctor, Romana II.
Warnings: None.

Recced because: It's insanely INSANELY cute? With fabulous Four voice? And pitch-perfect Four/Romana interaction? Which are both really hard to get down? I think these are all valid reasons. Also, how I wish it were canon.
ext_15290: (seven and ace)
[identity profile] jinxed-wood.livejournal.com
Story: Tea Time Terror for Time Tots
Author: Branwyn on teaspoon, [livejournal.com profile] cesario on LJ
Wordcount: 2,133
Rating: All ages
Author's Summary: The Doctor writes an instructive book for children.
Characters/Pairings: The Doctor (7th)

Recced because: Amusing and sweet, and a little bit sad; Seven's acerbic nature and wit really shines through in this story. A beautiful piece of writing.
[identity profile] stoplookingup.livejournal.com
Story: in a dim light
Author: Branwyn
Rating: general
Word Count: 799
Author's Summary: Romana is a slave of the Daleks, and the Doctor is a nightmare incarnate.
Characters/Pairings: Four, Romana
Warnings: none.

Recced because:
Another character study, also in the context of a confinement (get the feeling I have a soft spot for these?).  I love how the author captures that way Four and Romana have of conversing in calm, measured tones -- that lightness in the dialogue, no matter what the situation. It’s that British impassiveness, that stiff upper lip carried to the nth degree, that just makes the emotion and the connection come through all the more, and the effect is heartrending. (Note: I only just discovered before posting that this is based on a Big Finish audio, The Apocalypse Element. It’s fascinating and quite readable without knowing that, though.)
[identity profile] kindkit.livejournal.com
Story: A Moment's Grace
Author: Branwyn ([livejournal.com profile] cesario)
Rating: Teen
Word Count: 4446
Author's Summary: On the eve of her return to England, a weary Martha Jones meets an old friend for the first time.
Characters/Pairings: Martha Jones, Second Doctor
Warnings: None.

Recced because: On one level, this is fix-it fic: Martha meets a Doctor who values and appreciates her in a way that the Tenth Doctor seldom seemed to. But really it's much more than that. This is a story about fighting the good (long, exhausting, terrifying) fight against overwhelming odds, and the way the fight always brings pain and loss, and sometimes causes irreparable damage. The juxtaposition of Two and Ten allows a very clear-eyed look at Ten's flaws, but there's not a hint of character-bashing here. The story is full of compassion and insight. Plus, the character voices are wonderful and the prose is spare, disciplined, and a pleasure to read.

snippet )

I hope you enjoy, and please don't forget to leave feedback for the author.
ext_6531: (DW: Doctor's orders (Martha))
[identity profile] lizbee.livejournal.com
Story: Providence
Author: Branwyn
Rating: teen
Word Count: 2641
Author's Summary:  Not all the monsters in the TARDIS are locked safely in the attic.
Characters/Pairings: Ten, Martha, Ace, Seven
Warnings: None.

Recced because: Lots of fics have dealt with the Tenth Doctor as the lonely god, bringer of cosmic vengeance, all shall love him and despair etc, but few have done so with such intellectual detachment, or such a neat plot.  "Providence" acts as a missing scene in "Family of Blood", examining the punishment of the Brother and its implications for the Doctor's past.  Branwyn's Doctor is firmly steeped in the Cartmel era --  The Doctor knows exactly what he's seeing when he looks into a mirror. This body he shaped for Rose's benefit, it doesn't hide him from himself. According to the myths, Merlin had aged in reverse. One day he will be Merlin. Perhaps one day soon---it's there on his to-do list, somewhere, and it feels like the right time, he'll have to ask Martha how she'd feel about playing Nimue for a bit -- but with the extra twist of darkness and awful (awesome) power that the Doctor has acquired in his tenth incarnation. 

But this is also a story about Martha, and the Doctor's respect and admiration for her simply burns through every line.  And it's a story about Ace, and about myths, and coming full circle.  And I don't know if it's intentional, but the final sentence rings with the echo of things to come, the Master and the Year That Never Was.  All constructed in Branwyn's careful, lyrical prose.

reccity-rec-rec

Our current reccer is [personal profile] clocketpatch.

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