Wonderful, Wonderful...

More X-Files Recommendations.

Terrifying Uberscullies.

Hey, I had more than I thought!

Cool. *g*

Older XF recs can be found here.

New recs will always be added to the top of the page.

Page updated July 17, 2003 with one new rec.



 

Diana Williams: "Live to Tell" (vid)

Oh, man, okay, *now* I'm willing to ease off on my view that there
can be too many vids on a given theme, because even though Laura
Shapiro already did a kind of woobie!Mulder-tries-to-make-it-all-make-
sense vid, this one really worked for me.

I mean, okay, the cuts aren't perfect, and I would've chosen different
clips in a few places, but dude. Mulder! Woobie!

I love all these vidders who make me change my mind about a
character. And maybe the song choice was too obvious, but fuck it,
it works *really* well, imo.

*

Jessica Harris: Mary Sue

God, this was just... I just reread this today, when updating the page
and I'd forgotten how twistedly, awkwardly, uncomfortably *cool* it
is. I mean... damn.

Like we haven't all been *here* once in a while.

Have a quote:

"There, that's nice. I always wondered about all the bleeding mouths
in slash, you know - too freudian for words, in my opinion - but I
have to admit, it kinda does it for me, too." She smiled at him again,
and affectionately patted his cheek with one fat little hand. "Anyway,
Mulder will be here any minute for the rescue and the hot sex, so I
should go."

'Mulder?" he said.

She frowned a little. "You'd rather Skinner? I've paired you with him
a couple of times - that story where I made you nearly died of
pneumonia, and then the one three stories before that, where I had
you working as a hustler, who was then abused by a psycho john,
but I don't think it was my best work. I'm not as into that daddy thing
as some of the girls. I like you better with Mulder - all that angst and
conflicted feeling."

~

*happysigh*

Anna S.: A Little Vamp Tale

You know, sometimes it's almost too easy to find something to rec. I mean,
there I was, checking for updates, when I saw... this.

"Hey," I said to myself, "I don't remember this one."

I open it up and find... well, I find genius, of course. It's *Anna*. Writing
*Mulder*.

You just don't get better than that on this plane of fannish existence. Sometimes
I think every truly great writer has one or two particular characters with whom they
exist in a kind of symbiosis. They love them, live them, *are* them in such a way
that when they come out with a story featuring them, all bets are off.

The Spike has Ethan Rayne. Kat Allison has Methos. Debchan and Sheila Perez
have been having a wild threesome with Oz for years. Jane St. Clair *owns*
Cyclops. And so on.

Anna?

Mulder.

Mulder... as a vampire?

Eeee.

Have a quote:

Stephan. Mulder chewed on the name, worrying at it, knowing it helped him not
at all. He could return to the bar he'd been in, hope that his companion had been
there before, that the bartender had some whiff of this particular patron's life
beyond the club's walls. Faint hopes. But he had to have something to hold onto.
He could not be alone in this. They didn't do that, did they? Change a man and
then abandon him to his alteration, to make the long dark journey of immortality
in solitude? It seemed. . .unlikely.

Assaulted by doubts, he thought of Scully again, her sensible pursuit of exactitude
and rational answers. Was she right about this too? Maybe he was crazy, or
working himself down that route. Vampire. If he had been made a vampire, would
it be like this? Trying to scoff at himself with an interior, Scully-like voice, Mulder
tossed up the skeet one by one and shot them down.

I'm turning into a vampire. (Vampires are myth; I have a disease.) My heart has
stopped beating. (No it hasn't, or I'd be dead.) I can't abide sunlight; I can do flips
like a preadolescent gymnast; my wounds heal with unholy speed. . .I am craving
blood. (Illness and imagination; hysteria and delusion.) Want to see my fangs,
mom? (Back, Satan spawn.)

Mulder sighed and his hands played restlessly across the steering wheel. Outside,
trees slid away on either side of the highway, a thick dark weave with the night.
The car's wheels swished rhythmically on the road's cool surface. More quelling
than all the rational arguments he could muster was the dry, small feeling of ironic
absurdity that clung to his consciousness like a scrap of autumn leaf and resisted
the pull of the wind. Fox Mulder, Special Agent and vampire at large.

~

Humor and beauty and the kind of atmosphere directors couldn't produce with
multi-million dollar budgets and special-effect wizards. Jesus.

This could've been fluff. This *could've* been meaningless.

Have another quote:

"I'm beginning to think," [Scully] said, turning to face Mulder, "that you don't
want treatment for this."

"I don't," Mulder said without thinking. Under her cool stony gaze, he realized
the import of his words and grew a shade sheepish. "Okay, I was a bit
disturbed at first, but I'm getting used to the idea. It's growing on me."

"Like a fungus?"

Mulder gave his new, odd smile again. "Like a shadow."

It was trite to shiver, but nonetheless a cold flash of dismay shunted down
Scully's body from scalp to toe.

"I want to run some more toxicological tests on your blood. You're behaving out
of character and I'm not even sure you realize it."

"But I do," Mulder said. He stepped closer like an actor taking a mark, gaze
holding hers. "I feel the difference."

Scully swallowed; she felt she was holding her ground against an advance
and it disturbed her. It was wrong. For a brief flash of insight she almost
recognized the edge of something just beyond her normal ken, a force new and
impersonally terrible; she sensed it in the manner of a horse sensing a nearing
wall of flame, but then pushed herself past that intuition.

~

God, such beautiful, such *subtle* horror. This is the real stuff. The *pure* shot.

And I'm in love.

There were a few things I didn't like -- the POV shifts, the traditional cutesy
Well Now I'm A Vampire moments with Stephan, but oh, man, it's more than
made up for by Mulder's innate *Mulderness* and the awkward realism of just
what it would mean to Mulder's relationship with Scully for something like this
to happen.

Dark, lovely, *hot* read.

*

Laura Shapiro: "Rook" (vid)

Really, you should be watching all of Laura's vids, because as far as I'm
concerned you just can't *find* better, but this is one of my all-time favorites.

Why?

It's haunting, the way the best X-Files episodes were. The song chosen will
grab your soul and twist. The clips and cuts were excellently chosen and
done and I was just in awe throughout.

It's entirely in character, putting even the rotten haggis of the last few seasons
into context and making everything make *sense*. Jesus, anyone who can
make the mytharc make sense gets about 9,000,000 points.

It made me fall in love with Mulder, something that I've never once been in danger
of. Suddenly, I understood him and his quest.

And I ached for him.

Beautifully done. Tell Laura she rules, eh?

*

A Frightened Little Girl: My Little Demons

Redemption, the Krycek way. Read. Laugh until it hurts. Then? Laugh
some more. God, this *killed* me. Got the rec from the ladies at Polyamorous.

Here, have a few quotes:

I mean, if you spend most of your formative years
trying to become a top-notch assassin/ruler of the free world, the last
thing you need are some peasants drunk on rebellion going after you with a
cleaver.

But I've survived. I've moved on. I cried my bitter tears, went home, got
completely wasted and shot at some traffic signs. I sobered up. I found out
I could survive without a left arm. Of course, I had previously been almost
entirely left-handed, but hey, what's the big deal? That's life. You roll
with the punches. I learned how to write again. One night I got drunk and
crafted a makeshift prosthetic arm, which consisted of a harness and a
long, rusted metal pole. It was actually quite useful - I could wander
the streets freely, unafraid of the ne'er-do-wells that hid in the
alleyways, waiting to beat me down. One quick thrust of my arm and they
doubled over, succumbing to the sweet sweet kiss of tetanus.

*

From birth to about 16, I was considered a 'good' child. This wasn't
surprising. My community had a fairly relaxed view of things, so as long
as you didn't commit arson or incest you were pretty much guaranteed a
standing of 'good child.' "Every kid takes a little heroin now and then,"
was the community's feeling, "but so long as our family trees remain
properly forked, why complain?"

*

Mulder gripped my shoulder and spun me around. I jumped when I saw him -
it was a rude gesture, but I couldn't help it. He looked like hell. Random
chunks of hair jutted like icicles out of his skull, and his rumpled clothes
were matted and stained with God-knows-what. Under different circumstances,
I would've liked to sit down with him, give him some styling tips, maybe
experiment with a few competing brands of laundry detergent, but now was
not the time.

~

Go. Read.

*

torch: In heavenly peace

Another too-sad-to-rec piece.

Not entirely cheerful. Jesus H. Christ on a jumped-up chariot-driven
PONY.

This story *broke* me.

Nearly five years after reading it the first (and only) time, I still start
gibbering at the memory of it. God. God. GOD.

Such love. Such love.

No, I'm not gonna read it again to give you quotes. Read it yourself,
should you feel in need of a cleansing weep.

*whimper* Hotel towels...

However...

*Bitching* about the unhappiness can sometimes yield results, like
the lovely, ominously dreamy After such dreams.

Joy, yes, and beauty and love and happiness and everything Our
Kryceks (we) ache to own, if only for a moment, but that's not why
I love this piece so much.

It's actually almost meta, but in such a subtle way you won't catch it
unless you read it about 50,000 times like I have. *g* It's a moment
out of time, it's seeing the elephant, it's the desire of an entire
fandom, it's so fucking *pure*...

*flails*

Give me another four years; I might have the words for it then.

Jane Mortimer: The Same Everywhere

God, I was *obsessed* with "The Same Everywhere" for the longest time.

I still am. Most people prefer the sequel, but... Jesus. Just this one quote:

Another five minutes. Finally Langly stood up and brushed the snow off
his coat. "Feel like coming in? If you don't..." He shrugged.

"Okay." Krycek got up and followed him in.

Back in the room, he sat down on the bed and let his feet toast themselves
under the covers. It felt great, but he didn't want to commit those feet as to
what they'd be doing an hour from now.

"I might get up and leave again," he commented.

"Whatever," said Langly vaguely. Then he said, "I have an idea."

"Yeah?"

"Pretend that you're somewhere else, somewhere you're used
to sleeping."

He looked at Langly with contempt. "I can't imagine myself away from a
problem."

"Sure you can." He seemed unfazed by Krycek's tone. "Close your eyes."

Krycek sighed.

"Close your eyes. Come on, humor me."

He shut them. The night was absolutely quiet and black.

After a second he heard Langly's voice say, "See? The darkness is the
same everywhere."

~

*sigh* The details, the little weirdnesses, the passing sweetness -- and
yes, this story *does* have a lot to do with my Langly obsession, why do
you ask?

And then there are quotes like this:

Mulder reached up, took that unyielding face in his hands, and made it
look at him. "I wish you wouldn't talk about me as though I were some
kind of recipe. Changing the amount of my ingredients won't change who
I am."

Some expression moved over the cold angel's facade for a moment, he
wasn't sure what; then the other kissed him on the lips. Gently, this time.
"All you creatures are recipes. Everywhere I go. It's fascinating. I never
get tired of it."

No one had ever told him before that his biochemical makeup added to
his allure.

~

And you're reminded... well, Jesus *fuck*. Jane can make you laugh, cry,
come in your pants... I love this story to death. I find it hard to believe than
anyone with even a passing interest in XF slash hasn't already read it, but
hey, what the hell, right? If *any* story belongs on my rec page, it's this one.

And, of course, the sequel.

The Hand We Were Dealt is both gentler and more brutal than its prequel,
far more traditional in terms of romance, and infinitely more emotional --
as it should be.

After all, the third member of the party is gone, and only the gifts remain.

I still prefer the prequel. I'm not sure why. This one is beautifully written,
full of sex and hope and despair, not to mention all the wit and creativity
that one comes to expect from Mortimer, not to mention that it makes me
cry *every* time, and yet...

Heh. Maybe I'm just a pervert. ::waits for it::

Still, it has one of the best snapshots of Krycek ever here:

"It's a logical hypothesis. It's my most serious need."

His most serious need was for a keeper with a semi-automatic weapon.
Mulder said, "Maybe a being from another star doesn't consider your
street address a matter of pressing concern."

Krycek was silent. He tucked his hands under his arms as he walked,
glanced around at the stark trees and leaden sky. When he spoke, his
voice was different. "Mulder, if I can't operate effectively in the United
States, I'm not useful. And if you want to live, you have to be useful to
people."

Mulder was given pause for a second. Alex dropped those words as
though they were undeniable religious doctrine. As though Mulder had
requested, for some bizarre reason of his own, to have the
overwhelmingly obvious pointed out to him.

~

And it's still one of the best stories the fandom's ever produced. Yeah, like
I didn't put off sleep for another hour just to reread it.

Again. *g*

Finally, quite possibly the best Truth or Dare story *ever* written,
appropriately called Truth or Dare.

Mulder. Krycek. Truth and control.

Or: where I got my love for truly good dirty talk. Where I got my need to
get good at it myself.

Or: wish fulfillment is never quite what it seems. A quote:

"Ask, then." He growled it, leaving kisses like shotgun shells across
Krycek's chest, his stomach, his navel, the tight stretch of denim
around his hips.

"The truth. Tell me what you want from me."

Figure it out.

To blow your head off with an AK-47.

I don't know.

He knew the nagging dissatisfaction he always felt when he'd failed to
touch the heart of a problem.

"Mulder?"

To fuck you till you can't move.

To blow your head off, period.

I don't know.

~

Jane has a gift for writing Mulders who teeter on the edge of a truly beautiful
break without falling over. In other words? Mulders who are *real*. Canon.

True.

And Jesus. How did I ever forget "you looked so fucking bored?"

Heh. See Te discover her roots...

*

JC Sun: Danishes

Which certainly include Ms. Sun. Good *lord*. This woman's vignette's pack a
punch. As you can tell, I'm on a mild nostalgia kick when it comes to XF, and I
remembered *this* story was one that I always made my friends read.

The imagery, I would say. The language! The incredibly *fucked* up sense of
humor!

Well, it's all still there. I still laughed out loud. Heh heh. Heh. Yeah.

Danishes.

And: My Blushing Bride http://joyce.jteers.net/fanfiction/xf-myblushingbride.html

Mmm. Well, she says herself that the quality is a little uneven, and there are
spots where I'd snip here, tuck there, but... well, obviously I'm *reccing* the
thing, right?

Another vignette, and God, I'd forgotten what JC Sun could do with the vignette.

Makes it sing, y'all.

Makes it all real, in just a few brushes of color, a few hints of what the detail *could*
be. The audience has to work for this one, and it makes the experience all the
better.

Yum.
 
 

The Spike: Renascence

The Spike describes this one as being mostly 'therapy fic,' but she's
doing herself a serious disservice. Right around now, there's a bit of
a scuffle going on about fannish bitterness. Why some people leave
a fandom when others stay. Why some people pick at the bones of
a fandom when others toss them aside.

I can't help but think of the days when me and my fellow XF expatriates
would reminisce over days gone by and wonder when someone would
put the franchise out of its misery so that the fans could come in and
take over.

So that we could pick up the shreds of the characters we'd loved and
bring them back to their former glory, dark, light, and everything in
between.

Personally? I think they waited too long. We've scattered all over the
place.

Luckily, there are writers like the Spike who remain faithful.

And as I've said on other pages... there are some boys you never
forget.

This story will stay with you, somewhere back in your hindbrain.

Back where the ends always justify the means, and the cost is never
counted.

Be sure to read the prequels.

*

D.B. Kate: Goober and the Czar

Long ago and far away, when the world of fandom was shiny and
new (to me), I fell in love with a certain lab mouse named Something Or
Other Pendrell. Personally, I'm partial to Brian. What can I say? The
man had less than twelve minutes of screen-time, a major crush on
Scully, and a big target on his head for Mulder barbs. A cute little
red-headed dork. *siiiiigh*

Enter Alex Krycek, smooth, dark bad boy before he was all *that*
smooth.

Enter the head of Chuckles D. Clown.

Guys, you just gotta read. This is an XF slash classic, straight
from the legendary pen of D.B. Kate, or Woman of a Thousand Aliases.
It's funny, it's sweet, it's more funny, it's sexy, and it's
*weird*. You'll love it.

Give it a try.

LoneGunGuy: April is the Cruelest Month

Look, this story is just *damned* good. Exciting, funny, twisty,
everything. I read this while I was pretty much collapsing from whatever
the hell my body was throwing at me and I could not *stop*. My bed
called me. My dog snored hypnotically. But no. I had to finish this.

It's another serial killer (yes, yes, but these things happen), a bomber
this time with one of the most creative modus operandi I've ever
seen.

Along this crazy, creepy ride we're given a chance to take a good
look at ourselves. What *is* the basis of human intelligence? And
just what did we have to sacrifice to gain it?

There are few wrong notes in here, mostly in the poorly sketched and
sugary Scully-Bayliss bits, but they are few and far between, and
quite easily ignored.

Now pardon me while I go find more of this guy's stuff.

Oh, say, like Vital Fluids.

This is honestly one of the most fascinating case files I've seen. It
was wonderfully entertaining and just plain *interesting*. I'd love to see
it on television someday. Anyway, it's a different sort of serial killer (I
know, I *know*), one that left me wanting *more*. The Scully here is a wee
bit frightening -- just the way I like her.

In this one we learn about age, and blood, and -- wait for it -- the
vampires that roam the earth. Under it all it's a fascinating look at
what it means to be a woman, and what we're willing to do to *live*.

And did I mention the Scully? God, this is the badass of Season 3
merged with the cool, knowing Scully of Season 5. Oh, sure, the
characterizations all around are fine and charged, but Our Scully
shines like a beacon, and carries the show with grace and aplomb,
all while remaining *human*.

No superheroes. No saints. Just a little twist at the meaning of life.

But wait, there's also The Tiger Complex!

It's huge, it's terrifying, it's *fab*. Right on target with Mulder
and Scully, and original characters I'm tempted to write fanfic about,
they're so beautifully realized.

Despite the size, the story was fast-paced, with just the right
amount of intrigue and gore. That's right, we've got Consortium,
socio-political-military upheaval, Amazonian tribal mythology,
and these freaky *butterflies* of all things...

Oh, no way am I spoiling this. Why can't they make an XF movie
like *this*?

It's a story of the fantastic that blends smoothly into the real
world, it's the kind of story that you can't help imagine going on
and on and on, just like real life. I think this is my favorite of
LoneGunGuy's work thus far, but it's a tough, tough call.

Suffice it to say, I'm addicted.

*

Let's talk about Anna some more, k? Specifically, "Devil In A New
Dress."

An oldie but goodie here, children. Sexy, transgressive far beyond
the obvious (look, Roz, I think I'm learning!), desperately intelligent,
and, quite possibly, the story that settled in my mind just how
*badly* I wanted to be like Anna.

Oh, I worshiped her. For a while I was sending her feedback on this
story every time I read it. Stalk much?

So, what we have is... um. Mulderinnadress. Oh yes. Gee, can you
tell where the inspirations came from? Mulder in all of his... quirky
is just far too light a word for this. Mulder is *strange*, deeply
strange, and yet human just the same.

This story made me feel as though there needed to  be an entirely
separate class designated for Mulders, so we could all learn to
appreciate their rich and varied culture.

And Scully is the perfect lens to view him through, and, of course,
quite a character in her own right. Human, soft here and there,
bright and sharp there and here.

This is one of my desert island stories, people. Read it. Tell Anna she's
fab.

*

Basingstoke: Even White Teeth

Krycek. Mulder. Small truths. The Corinthian.

Desire and temptation, ignorant love and the kind of loss there's just no way
around. To be seduced by a nightmare... how beautiful. I fell in absolute
love with this story, and I think you might, too.

After all, pure fear is something to be valued, yes?

*

Aaaaand... more Pares! Are you sensing a theme?

something faithful and mad

XF *gen*, people.

Though, you know, maybe it's not all that odd that I'm reccing XF gen,
considering the vast, bleak wasteland that XF slash has become since the
vast exodus of '99.

Still, again, this is Pares revisiting some of her serious strengths --
atmosphere, absurdist humor, Scully, and unaldulterated creep.
Inappropriate creep? Yes and no. And also maybe. Hard to describe this one
in the way it deserves. Scully. Brilliant characterization. Slice of life so vivid
you can taste it.

Something.

It's just... God. I don't know. It'll make you remember when the show was
good.

It'll make you remember when the *writers* for it were good.

Love the Pretty Pretty.

*
 
 

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