5x00 Blind Heat by jane0904
"A week after the end of Season 4, Kate and Rick talk about what happens next, and Martha becomes embroiled in a mystery of her own, finding she needs help from a certain ex-cop and her writer son." Strong post-season 5 (au) case file, with bonus (realistic) Castle/Beckett.
A Blank Page Is Just History Erased by missymeggins
A lovely post-season 2 fic, with both sides sharing equal potions of the blame, and Kate carefully trying to make her way back into "them" again.
Fractured by Cartographical
Or, as I like to call it, the one where Beckett breaks her leg and Castle loses his mind. Spectacularly funny dialogue, some very sweet moments, good characterization.
Like Midnight by Cartographical
Long, somewhat traumatic late season 3 au; said trauma is well handled, and the characterization felt believable.
Of Finding Innocence by FanficwriterGHC
Very long au, set several years before the series. Beckett met Castle once at a book signing-- what if that meeting had gone very differently? A very slow, thoughtful romance; it really sucked me in, but it may need an id-fic warning, since you need to be pretty invested in Castle/Beckett. (I actually liked pretty much everything by this author.)
Galatea by RJ Anderson
House/Cameron; given a Cameron who has actually grown and learned as a character, the pairing works suprisingly well; RJ keeps the dialogue crackling and the romance light.
Last Rites by Dira Sudis
After the death of Chase's father, House sends Cameron on a mission of mercy. Very AU, but good characterization; the interactions are more consistent than the show was.
Saints and Saviors by EnchantedApril
Something of a guilty pleasure fic -- a long, detailed, AU House/Cameron romance. Yes, I did just say that, and yes, it is quite good if you like a strong, occasionally sentimental-as-all-hell romance (and are willing to forgive the occasional spot of overwriting). (Allow for the somewhat dramatic beginning, please; some characters need really big boots to the head to get them moving, and this gets the job done with the minimum required melodrama.)
What Black Magic Can Do by Athenae
A insightful little Season 1 Cameron fic that did quite a lot to reconcile me to her characterization at the time.
Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries
Caught in the Act by Firebird9
"'Why is it, Miss Fisher, that whenever I accompany you to the theatre, somebody ends up dead on the stage?' Phryne and Jack investigate the murder of a cardsharp stagehand. But solving this case may cost both of them more than they had anticipated." Case file with lots of Phryne/Jack subtext very clearly becoming text.
Devil in the Light by xfphile
"Not all devils come out at night. Not all angels have wings. And expectations, like battle plans, rarely survive first contact." Goes au after 207; first bit is fairly angsty, but the characterization is good and the ending is awesome.
fighting vainly the old ennui by Fahye
(In which Inspector Jack Robinson is having a fairly uneventful year, divorce notwithstanding, until he acquires a lady doctor for a drinking buddy and receives a series of flirtatious notes from a jewel thief.) [Kiki Says: Is all things I love in an AU, and is just *delightful*. Excellent Jack POV, and great use of poetry and quotes.]
The Flinders Street Gang by Signe (oxoniensis)
"Well, this is certainly a very interesting turn of affairs. Not in the least the way I'd imagined our first night together." Jack and Phryne, in trouble again.
Lit Up by the Moon by BlackEyedGirl
"Phryne came out of the war shining, unexpected as a knife in the dark. He sharpens himself on her bright edges. When she turns brittle, he tries to lend her strength, since he cannot lend her laughter, and only sometimes comfort." Jack introspection.
Random: Top Picks
R. John Burke @ Fanfiction.net
Words cannot express my respect and love for A Final Darkness, an epic novel that is dark and rich with detail that you just wouldn't expect from a man whose specialty in this fandom has been Shakespearean parody. The characterization is dead-on, the writing style wry and ironic, the plot intricate, cohesive, and fascinating. To recover, go read the Shakesperean parodies.
Twelve by Rheanna
Kiki: "This long, plotty drama looks at the Cylons, and their humanity-- or aspirations toward it-- and asks the hard questions about what makes someone who they are. Is it their memories or their character? Their origins or their dreams? Her Apollo is dead-on, and Starbuck and Adama are extraordinarily well-done, heroic and flawed at the same time. It'll break your heart and mend it and leave you thinking it's canon." Yeah. Like that. KikiRec
Lokahi by eli
Danny/Kono smut, yay! And it's hot and funny, and generally very well done. NC-17 Yuletide 2010
The Princess Is in Another Castle by waketosleep
"Danny and Kono must go on an epic quest to rescue Steve from mortal peril and his own shortsightedness. There may or may not be goombas." Great Danny and Kono caper, lots of great action and funny-as-hell dialogue. Yuletide 2010
Conflict Resolution by fearlessfan
Early Lassiter written as an actual real person (which didn't happen often circa season 1), forced into therapy for punching a smart-ass psychic detective who almost deserved it. A must-read.
An Avalanche Of Detour Signs by gyzym
Absolutely fabulous Molly Hooper fic, over the course of series 1 and 2 (presumably somewhat au for Series 3). Gorgeous Molly characterization, finding her way to awesome, and her growing relationship with DI Lestrade is a thing of beauty. NC-17 towards the end, but mildly so.
Five Times North Star Assistance Helped The English Guy by Fyre
What it says on the tin. Completely hilarious. KikiRec
Talking Stick/Circle by Macedon and Peg Robinson
[Star Trek: Voyager]
I got on an unexpected Paris/Torres kick, and was disappointed to discover that much of the fic I loved years ago wasn't nearly as good as I remembered. Thankfully, such was not the case with this amazing series of stories and novellas. A true alternate universe, Macedon and Peg took Voyager in directions that TPTB never dreamed of, and so should have. This is Voyager as it could have been, had it lived up to any of its potential, with the conflict, the drama, the blood, and the glory of the interweaving of two separate crews -- and many separate cultures -- played for all its worth. Told alternately from Janeway and Chakotay's POVs, these 8 stories, particularly the incredible last one, are almost certainly the greatest achievement in Voyager fanfic, possibly in all of Star Trek fandom. If you never watched the show... don't. Read this instead. You'll be grateful you did. (Note: Read Kelly's '37 Chevy right before "The Rose and the Yew Tree", for the P/T backstory that's implied, but not shown).
The New Deal by Closer
"Harvey Specter, second year law student at Harvard, was walking home one night when he found a teenaged runaway named Mike freezing to death on his doorstep." I watched the pilot of Suits solely and completely so that I could read this fic. I don't actually like Suits at all, but reading this made watching the pilot totally worth it. A satisfying, awesome AU. KikiRec
kyle wei, tree whisperer by magneticwave
[Teen Wolf (TV)]
The other Paulson twin shows up and starts shouting about how all of their English teachers dying is a global conspiracy to make sure that none of them graduate, which Mandy takes as an invitation to air her hypothesis (poorly-supported, but hilarious) that next year's graduating seniors are going to have to reenact the season three finale of Buffy before they can collect their diplomas. [Kiki Says: Honestly, I don't think you need to know the series to enjoy this; Harley was in one episode, but she has an affectionate 'you dumbass' attitude to our impulse-control-deficient protagonists.]
MODE: Final Issue! by Yahtzee
Yahtzee gifts us with an absolutely perfect ending to the series, with everyone's lives, if not wrapped up, than at least set on the right track.
You Don't Need Analyzing (It's Not So Surprising) by Perpetual Motion (perpetfic)
This is one of those fics where I'm torn about reccing it, since I suspect it's pushing my buttons more than my brain. But then, that was The A-Team for you. :) And this really is a very sweet Amy/Murdock romance, with lovely appearances by the guys, and even Col. Decker gets written well. WAFFs all over the place, especially the ending.
Soap Opera by Yahtzee
A sweet, romantic, WAFFy look inside the head of a guy who will never star in a soap opera, but still might get the girl. (Sydney/Weiss)
What You Never Knew You Wanted by R.J. Anderson
A plotty story that sets up an intriguing AU, in which Sydney's missing years were more different than she ever believed possible. The difficult second-person is used to great effect; give it a chance. (If I had the chance, I'd skip the very last section of the last part -- I think it wimps out more than a bit and the story stands better without it; YMMV.)
In Case of an Emergency by shrift
"Terrorists, Syd. They've taken over your bathroom and they're demanding beer." A short, sweet, funny Sydney and Weiss fic.
The Green Room
Viridian5 specializes in slash, which I haven't read, but her gen stuff rocks the house down. True Romance is silly, fluffy fic, with dialogue so dead-on perfect I can hear the voices in my head. For a really wild -- and much darker and bloody brilliant -- ride, try Understanding next, then just start reading all of her pre-Andromeda fics, especially Your New Harper: A First-Time Owner's Guide.
Idea No. 8
Jessie's fic specializes in character pieces, ranging from Farscape to The West Wing to Andromeda, and she doesn't seem to be able to put a foot wrong in any of them. Read it all, man.
Ozai's Vengeance by Fandomme
[Avatar: The Last Airbender]
Long, plotty, romantic (Katara/Zuko) future-fic. Previously relationships are handled with grace, and pretty much all of the old Gaang (with, sadly, one glaring exception) makes an appearance.
Red Is the Color of the End of the World by Friendshipper
[Avatar: The Last Airbender]
Katara heals after the war.
A Thousand Miles by Therienne
[Avatar: The Last Airbender]
Brilliantly written backstory on the beginning of Zuko and Iroh's quest for the Avatar. I feel so sorry for Zuko, and Iroh is the Coolest. Person. Ever.
BSG: The Common People Challenge
Christina K reimagined an old X-Men challenge, to take ordinary, everyday people and give a glimpse of their lives in an extraordinary world. Lots of gems, including Rheanna's Calliope and BK the Irregular's Gooney Bird.
Laws of Gravity by Brynn McK.
Beautiful, stunning, gorgeous Lee/Kara backstory, which makes sense of everything we know in canon and never falters for even a single, tiny second.(Part 2 is here.)
Stolen Moments by snowballjane
"You do realise that this is treating the whole fleet like a kindergarten class?" Roslin and Adam deal with an everyday crisis. A neat little look at the early dynamic between the two when nobody was currently trying to kill or arrest anyone else.
Supply and Demand by Sangga
On the surface, this is a simple story about trading supplies, about military regs and getting around them. But underneath, it's about Lee Adama adjusting to the end of the world, about the difference between necessities and luxuries, about friendship and leadership and everything in between. Great Lee POV. (Part 2 is here; Part 3 is here)
The Conversation in the Car by Yahtzee
"That's the problem with hooking up at a big fancy party, in Booth's opinion: the car ride in-between." Pitch-perfect Bones/Booth that manages to be hotter than actual sex.
Knight in Dented Armor by Hematite Badger
Another club, another fight, but this time, Bones didn't start it -- Zack did. A short but cute Booth POV.
Lock and Keys by Emma DeMarais
The trio is off to the Keys to rescue a girl for Barry the money launderer. Obviously, nothing goes as planned.
The Hand Love Deals You by Cadhla
Trevor is getting close to his goal, and everything that implies. Short and intense and awesome.
Ninety Nine Point Five by Lovely Poet
Trevor is this close to his hundred couples, and he's got the last one in sight....
And Never Lose Affection by Cherry Ice
[Dead Like Me]
A lovely little character study of Rube, the people he is responsible for, and everyone else he has yet to love.
Some People ride the Wave by sweetestdrain
[Dead Like Me]
Somewhere along the way, George has learned how to do something she could never do before. A lovely post-series story that gives a good, strong resolution that still feels exactly like something the show would have done. But probably not this deftly.
Family Portrait by Dira Sudis
[The Dead Zone]
Johnny's power starts hiccuping, and he drags Walt along for the ride as he tries to find a threatened five-year-old girl. Dark, dark themes (and adult ones, since she's setting up Johnny/Walt/Sarah), but well up to Dira's usual standards; the writing will suck you in and everything plays out plausibly and absorbingly. Fabulous Walt characterization, on top of a great Johnny voice.
Auld Lang Syne by Irena K
[The Dresden Files]
Harry gets an urgent phone call from Murphy that ends in gunshots -- and takes place 11 days in the future. Nice characterization and plotting, and a particularly lovely use of Bob.
Child's Play by AWanderingMinstral
[The Dresden Files]
When Harry comes to the assistance of a murdered woman, he must take responsibility for the daughter she leaves behind. Kidfic in one of the very best ways, neatly plotted and a little on the dark side. KikiRec
Dysmas by Salieri (troyswann)
Long months after Fraser left with Victoria, Ray and Dief go to meet him at a diner in the middle of nowhere. A perfect touch with Ray and Fraser's voices; beautiful words and storytelling that kick you hard in the teeth when you're least expecting it, then coax a smile out of you. Breathtaking in every sense of the word. A must-read.
Death Before Dusk by Yahtzee
"The bad news: In 111 days, an asteroid will strike the Earth in a cataclysm that promises to destroy human civilization as we know it. The good news: There's been a murder." Yahtzee rocks. Joan/Sherlock, which I'm rarely into, but it works reasonably well here. NC17
I Take Thee, Carter: A Tale of Several Weddings and an Apocalypse by Deifire
In an alternate timeline, Jack and Allison got a chance at happiness together. But Eureka was still Eureka....
How Danny Fought the Groove Back by doqz
A nice look inside Danny's mind. I also really enjoyed The Certainties of Steve McGarritt.
The Less-Than-Legendary Journeys
An entire archive of fanfic that treats the shows and the characters with a deft mix of humor and drama. Anything up here is good; major slash content. In the non-fic section, they skewer the worst of H:TLJ fic with that same humor, and occasionally go off on rants about Iolaus characterization, which is one of my pet peeves.
When Hellmouths Collide by Kimberley Rector and LTLJ
Do not -- I repeat, DO NOT -- miss When Hellmouths Collide, the most utterly brilliant crossover I've ever read. Hercules/Buffy and no, I'm not kidding. Go. Read. Now. You will thank me.
Letters Home from the Academy by Liz Sharpe
There's nothing like rediscovering an old fic that reminds you how much you loved a fandom. Letters Home is exactly what it sounds like -- a story told via three letters from Hercules, Iolaus and Jason to their respective families, and it takes all three to get the real version of events at the Academy. Screamingly funny, and it all leads up to one hilarous punchline at the end. I miss Hercules some days....
Apocalypse by SLynn
Three years into the future, and our heroes are living in a world they never anticipated, on the run from a ruthless organization intent on containing or killing them all. It's not the best writing in the world, but the characterization and the intricate plot will suck you in almost immediately. The sequel is already in progress, thank goodness. Pretty much AU after Fallout.
Clarity by RivkaT
Picking up where the first half of the season ended, RivkaT got jossed immediately, and it's a shame. Her Claire is beautifully written, 16 years old and trying to figure the whole mess out. There's some good interactions with other characters (one of them unexpected and awesome), and a few observations that are just stunningly accurate. Not better than the show, but definitely as good as, which is high praise right now.
Face in the Crowd by saestina
Saestina made a logical leap on the consequences of Claire's powers (well before it played out on-screen), then spun the story out with power and poetry.
Ordinary Boy by saestina
Lyle Bennet, the world's most ordinary boy, has a ring-side seat for the Petrelli Family Circus. AU.
A Lytell Geste by Catherine Boone
I'd've recced this years ago if I'd known she had it archived somewhere. Methos. Amanda. On the loose and raising hell, as only Cath can write it. Think you know Robin Hood? Methos knows Robin Hood. And so does Amanda.... Snarky, silly, and hilariously funny, it'll remind you why, once upon a time, you loved Highlander.
Even Later by Sanj
[Into the Woods]
A very short, very lovely bit of an epilogue to the Broadway musical.
Basically the only archive for 'Jake 2.0' fic out there, noteworthy mostly for possession of Tara O'Shea's Geek of Steel , which is silly smut of the finest kind; Tara teased us with this on LJ for days, but it was so totally worth the wait. Jake's nanites act up in a new and unique -- and frustrating! -- way, and only Diane can supply the cure. The banter is hilarious, the situation unreal, and this is just too much fun.
Term Limits by Gale
[Joan of Arcadia]
Grace decides it's time to renegotiate the terms of her contract with Luke... Funny, sweet, in character and a great read (it doesn't incorporate the latest canon, but the story doesn't suffer for it).
Two Decisions Joan Didn't Make For Herself (And One She Did) by sexonastick
[Joan of Arcadia]
God tells Joan to keep a diary, Freidman steals it, and the consequences, as usual, spiral out of control. Great voices on everyone concerned, and the situation is both funny and plausible. This could very well have been an episode, and it would have been a good one.
Bar Hopping With a Sledgehammer by drewbug
[Law & Order: Criminal Intent]
Goren and Eames go looking for trouble, and an entirely different kind of trouble finds them. Reads like a scene from the show, short and tense.
Focus by SA
[Law & Order: Criminal Intent]
Short and sweet, but a very good snapshot of Goren and Eames.
Pound of Flesh by sangga
[Law & Order: Criminal Intent]
Goren and Eames on a stakeout; a straightforward short story about partners told quite well. Sangga invented a few details that clash with canon, but overall, it's a solid read.
Home is where by jamjar
Dani, post series finale.
Asking the Wrong Questions by TrollPrincess
Most excellent Lost future fic, the story of Charlie and Claire as told by someone who.. really ought to know. Very funny, very sweet, very AU.
Claire's War by Yahtzee
Spinning off from a challenge on lost_100, Yahtzee wrote a series of drabbles based on Babylon 5 episode titles. Then, being Yahtzee, she took it one step further, into a series of drabble-vignettes that lead the survivors into war to rescue one of their own. The constant breakage should be jarring, but instead only adds to the dark, almost creepy atmosphere of the overall arc. We get to see the events from almost everyone, and they're all dead on target. A chilling alternate version of events, and more than up to Yahtzee's usual standards.
Dirty Laundry by Mneumosyne
I've always suspected the inside of Hurley's head is a fun place to be, and this fic confirms it. Mneumosyne nails Hurley's voice as he counsels an over-reacting rock star through his crush on a pregnant Australian. Sweet, on-target, and absolutely hilarious. A must-read.
Home by Megan Reilly
Seriously AU (although less so than it was at the time), and another of those "after the island" fics. Shannon is lovingly and believably drawn, and her relationships with her stepmother and the other castaways is very well-done. Also try Survivor -- five years into the future, Kate has survived... whether she wanted to or not. And now it's starting all over again. Chillingly dark future fic, with some excellent twists and turns.
Under the Twinkling of a Fading Star by Rheanna
Rheanna was one of the first out of the gate of Lost fanfic, and set the standard in the process.
Sharing by Gatekeeper
After the events of the first season finale, Lisbon goes looking for Jane.
Palm, Switch, Steal by Greensilver
Monster Tamer by VickyVicarious
[Once Upon a Time]
"Princess Emma has always had a way with beasts, but the more she grows, the more out of hand it gets. The castle is running out of places to put them." Adorable AU.
The Path That Moonbeams Make by KnifeEdge
[Once Upon a Time]
"Emma likes to sleep with her window open. She never quite realized who she'd be inviting in. All things considered, however, Captain Hook showing up in her bedroom after midnight is hardly the worst of his offenses. Emma knows how to handle Hook." Very cool Emma/Hook. AU, but I hated where the show went, so...
We're All Just Stories In The End by adventurepants
[Once Upon a Time]
Lovely au where Snow goes through the wardrobe before Emma is born. KikiRec
I have to plug this site, since I designed the front graphic for the Profiler section, which is a sign of how much I adore Glenna's work. Her Believers series for Sam Waters and John Grant of 'Profiler' is sweet and very true to both characters (all three, actually, since Chloe Waters plays a large role), gradually building a very cool romance.
Fortune Is on Our Side by emptythreat
A short little bit of story, totally worth it for the hilariously accurate Shawn voice. This sounds exactly like the inside of his head, and that's a scary, scary thing.
A Whisper to the Living by Xparrot
Certainly not a happyfun!Psych fic, but a thoughtful, sober futurefic, nicely executed. Character deaths, don't read if you can't cope, but they happen offstage.
Through Fire and Rain by omorka
[The Real Ghostbusters]
"'I don't know," yelped the frantic voice on the other end of the phone. "It was on fire when I got into it!'" Solid casefic with a minimum of whumping.
The most reliable in updates, and home to some of the best fic out there. Emily and Kara finally moved it off Crosswinds, and redesigned it so it's much cleaner and much less obnoxiously cute. Unfortunately, you still have to wade through reams of the aforementioned teenybopper dreck to get to the good stuff, but it's worth the effort. Oh, and their Roswell Elementary series is pretty entertaining, but take it in very small portions; it's real easy to overdose on the cuteness of it all. Don't miss EmilyLuvsRoswell's Homes R' Us series, Natalie's Turning and Sparks and Elizabeth's brilliant AU Persephone's Footfalls, then try Ossian, Isis, Jessica, Katjen, Loki and Reena. This link is dead; if anyone knows where they relocated, please let me know.
One of the best all-around Roswell sites out there, with an extensive collection of fanfic. Mostly organized by couple, which makes finding particular authors a complete pain in the neck, but some good stuff, including a nice selection of those hard-to-find Alex/Isabel stories. Check out AfterHours for the NC-17. (Also look here for Mnemosyne's Endgame, Hideaway and the awesome Whisper Scream)
From Slayer to Killer
Mala started out writing Buffy/Spike fic, but expanded her archive to include some good Roswell fic. Try her Isabel/Valenti stories (no, I'm serious!), starting with the Before and After series, then read everything else she's got. Much darkness, much angst, but it's all well done. Some slash.
The Maria Filter by S.T. Shimi
A weird Millenium crossover that works spookily well.
Accommodation by story_monger
"Capheus, after the battle" Well-written conversations about choices and consequences.
The Green Blade by verityburns
Really solid case-fic, with lots of Sherlock and John working out their relationship, such as it is. Author classifies it as a bromance, which is about right. Very serious emotional stuff being discussed between two guys, and yet, it's not slash. Always trust Nomad when she recs something.
Major Pieces by Lindentreeisle (Captainblue)
Brilliant Sherlock fic (I didn't even hate Sherlock!) in which a serial killer case takes a most unpleasant twist. Excellent John POV, with a reasonably sympathetic Sherlock, and pitch-perfect LeStrade.
The Noblest Profession by Scrunchy
A fun story with the pace and dialogue of a really good Sports Night episode; Casey's son brings home a girl, and Casey melts down. And tries not to giggle while saying "Bonk" on the air.
graven with diamonds in letters plain by angelqueen04
Another of the Anne Bolyne AUs I adore -- what if Anne had simply stepped aside after the miscarriage of her son? Written in epistolary form; the language isn't quite perfect, but it works, and I prefer this version of history (okay, technically it's The Tudors fanfic, but it's close enough). :) KikiRec
Beyond Good and Evil by obsessive24
Whenever a series is cancelled before its time, someone tries to put right what went wrong; it seems especially appropriate to do so when the series in question is Tru Calling. obsessive24 puts together an intricate set of rewinds involving everyone Tru loves that don't seem to connect to anything else -- yet connect Tru and Jack beyond anything they ever expected. A very good virtual finale, well-characterized and nicely wrapping up the dangling ends.
Friends With Benefits by Yahtzee
A "what if" springing off from the fourth-season episode "The Bahamas Triangle." When Matt chooses Amanda, both Betty and Daniel find themselves single, lonely and a wee bit drunk. Daniel proposes a simple solution to their problems, which turns out not to be that simple after all ..." Wow, with the NC17, but also very sweet and hopeful.
last beautiful girl (in the world) by mardia
"The first time Daniel sleeps with Betty Suarez is in his office. No, not like that." Encapsulates everything I adore about Daniel's friendship with Betty.
UB Season Five: New York, New York by Yahtzee
Big fun! This follow-up season is adorably twisty and scandal-ridden, and Daniel and Betty are so cute!!! Not quite finished, I don't think, but it ends at a good point.
At the Top of the Hour by romanticalgirl
[WKRP in Cincinnati]
A very cute roadtrip with Venus, Andy and Bailey.
The Day After Tomorrow Challenge
Annie Sewell-Jennings started it, some really great authors jumped in, and a fairly lame movie gave birth to some excellent fic before it even opened. The challenge was to take any fandom, however unlikely, and set it in the end-of-the-world situation presented by "The Day After Tomorrow". The result: some damn good fic. The link is to the master list on ASJ's LiveJournal; I particularly recommend Goodnight, Moon by Yahtzee (fabulous and heart-breaking Joan of Arcadia), Infinite by Jinx32 (touching and ironic Tru Calling), and A Great and Noble Quest by Troll Princess (excellent Jake 2.0)