Multifandom fanfiction recommendations

Innovative and stylish fanfiction, showcasing the very best across multiple sf, fantasy & literature fandoms. Good writing in all its forms can be found here, including gen, het, slash, OCs, AUs, crossovers, future fics, humour & pastiche. Linked stories may not be suitable for children

Contents: 976 recs in 229 fandoms; 64 links
Latest update: 27/12/2017: A Ladies' Guide to Collecting Mermaid Love Songs (2), Agatha Christie (1), Arsenic and Old Lace (1), Artworks (2), Beauty and the Beast (1), Exeter Book (1), Hadestown (1), HP Lovecraft (2), James Tiptree Jr (1), Jorinde and Joringel (1), Les Contes d'Hoffmann (1), Literary RPF (2), LM Bujold – Chalion series (3), Lord Peter Wimsey (1), Moby Dick (1), Neil Gaiman – American Gods (1), Science RPF (2), Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1), Shakespeare's histories (1), Songs (1), Stephen King (2), The Threepenny Opera (1), Twelfth Night (1), Ursula Le Guin – Earthsea (2), Wagner Ring Cycle (1) & 1 new link

A Ladies' Guide to Collecting Mermaid Love Songs

An Argument For The Preservation Of The Self In Cases of Mermaid Transformation by Bakcheia

'I wonder if the sea tastes to mermaids as the air tastes to us? It would be dreadful to have salt in one's mouth all the time, I do not think I could bear it.' A possible future for Miss Holst, from a wistful short story by Aimee Picchi, one of Yuletide 2016's surprise gem fandoms. Thoughtful & very moving

[Added 25/12/2017; Romance/Erotica; 6000-20,000; A Ladies' Guide to Collecting Mermaid Love Songs]

A Ladies' Guide to Recording Dances of Elves by Elektra121

'Imagine their feathery fronds, filtering the sunrays like green combs running through a maiden's hair. The earthy odors of mosses and mushrooms mixing with the fresh scent of young fiddleheads sprouting into the green twilight. Cheekily, they beckon you on, deeper and deeper into the woods, urging you to gather their untamed elegance into your botanist's container – but beware! Many ladies get lost when they blindly follow the impulse to further explore the unknown.' This deliciously detailed pre-story abandons the wistful tone of the original short story by Aimee Picchi in favour of clever tongue-in-cheek humour. Great fun!

[Added 25/12/2017; Romance/Erotica; 1000-2500; A Ladies' Guide to Collecting Mermaid Love Songs]

Agatha Christie

The Spirit of St Mary Mead by Lost Spook

'"Oh, dear," she would say, watching her latest unwary worshipper with a gaze undimmed by her years. "I hardly think it fair to curse Coelius. After all, you have no proof that he was the one who spread those whispers against you. He dislikes you, it's true, I know, but I have seen such things before – a young man, of the Dumnonii, who detested a fellow craftsman, but he would take no underhand revenge, for instance. Oh, no, I think not Coelius. This Vitellius who told you of the rumours – now there, I think we have it. It is exactly like Cerdig and that envious brother of his all over again. Such malice."' Fabulous idea, which explains a lot about Miss Marple!

[Added 23/12/2017; Character Piece; 2500-6000; Agatha Christie]

Arsenic and Old Lace

Six Sips of Strychnine by Cookinguptales

"You're going to do that to us, Father, aren't you?" she asked. / "No, my dear," he said, and pulled a very small spoon from his desk drawer. "I'm going to do this for you." Dark origin story for the Brewster sisters that explores the boundary between eccentricity & evil

[Added 26/12/2017; Drama; 6000-20,000; Arsenic and Old Lace]


The Duchess's Evening Party by Zdenka

'He saw not a violin or harp, but a glass tank full of water, in which swam a large silvery fish. One of the footmen rolled up his sleeve, reached in, and extracted the fish by the tail in what seemed to be a practiced gesture. He solemnly brought it to Bernard.' A charming, whimsical fishc based on Troubador Tuning His Tuna by Omar Rayyan, with some help from PDQ Bach. Who knew 'fish puns' was an AO3 tag?

[Added 26/12/2017; Humour; 2500-6000; Artworks]

your shadow at evening, rising to meet you by Raven

'...they want the strapline spoken by a voice that speaks from history: the first commander of the first Martian colonisation expedition. Though with a calculated background of domesticity, Evan thinks: by the twinkling fibre-optic lights of a Landfall Night celebration and the faces of humanity's only extra-Terran children.' Beautifully written short based on a poster by NASA. The strong OCs flare into life despite the brevity

[Added 23/12/2017; Drama; 1000-2500; Artworks]

Beauty and the Beast

these long-prepared chains by Betony

'It took effect slowly. One morning the inhabitants of the little village that bordered the castle woke to find themselves every bit as hungry at they had been, as destitute and derelict, but possessed with a newfound buoyancy and a predilection for song.' Ingenious pre-story to the Disney version that turns details upside down to make sense of the film's set up and ties events more explicitly to the Revolution

[Added 26/12/2017; Drama; 1000-2500; Beauty and the Beast]

Exeter Book

saga hwæt ic hatte by Selden

'I saw him once, standing among them, watching me pick rushes. The mist lay heavy that morning and we were both casting shadows through it, longer and greater than ourselves. But his was muddled among the spines and flowers of the blackthorn, so that the mist and the blossom and the black branches hung at his back like a wave about to break.' Luscious, dense, layered writing that repays rereading, circling round to a perfect ending. I don't know the source (mainly the Wife's Lament) but this stands alone. Simply lovely!

[Added 25/12/2017; Character Piece; 2500-6000; Exeter Book]


sing it again by Scribe

'Lachesis settled into the rocking chair, shuffling her feet as close to the fire as she dared and taking her knitting needles from her pocket. The wool Clotho had given her was the vibrant red of new blood. She cast on, her old fingers nimble in the familiar pattern, the way that thread passed and passed and passed through her hands. She thought she might make a jacket.' Scribe focuses on the Fates' unique perspective, fleshing out the musical's world with well-chosen details

[Added 23/12/2017; Drama; 2500-6000; Hadestown]

HP Lovecraft

The Long Summoning by Marcelo

'My father waited until I was seven years old before he sacrificed my mother to Nyarlathotep. Later, he would tell me he had wanted to make sure I was old enough to remember.' Original, disturbing darkfic that eschews Lovecraftian prose for a relatively restrained style that sets the horror in sharp relief. The final line made me shudder: not one for the faint of heart

[Added 25/12/2017; Character Piece; 1000-2500; HP Lovecraft; Adult]

The Strange Confessions Of Ambrose Blake by Sweetcarolanne

'He paid his bills on time, and made regular orders for paints of high quality. If he favoured certain colours over others, or tended to purchase darker shades of paint rather than lighter, this was barely noticed by anyone. It was none of our business, after all. As I said before, Pickman was a very good customer.' Traditional slow-building horror based on Pickman's Model, that starts off light, even humorous, but reveals a nasty sting in the tail

[Added 25/12/2017; Character Piece; 2500-6000; HP Lovecraft]

James Tiptree Jr

The Greek Origins of Certain Words by Scioscribe

'"...And I eat vanilla wafers and hand-knit my own sweaters, but it must be conceded that by and large people have found more intriguing flavors and more contemporary gratification." / "So you enjoy me ironically. Like I'm camp. Or like you'd make your own jam if you could do fuck-all in the kitchen."' Clever & inventive sf, with a thoughtful look at the themes of And I Awoke And Found Me Here on the Cold Hill's Side, to which it forms a loose sequel

[Added 23/12/2017; Romance/Erotica; 2500-6000; James Tiptree Jr; Adult]

Jorinde and Joringel

A Congregation of Nightingales by Quillori

'Did fabled lands become real when you visited them, she wondered? Did they too have rats and sewers and endless work, or was it only her city that was really real?' Thoughtful multi-faceted tale that weaves Jorinde's story into those of other women, and touches on the role of choice & fate for women. The neat structure is shot through with gorgeous descriptive passages. (Crossover with the myth of Procne & Philomytha)

[Added 26/12/2017; Drama; 2500-6000; Jorinde and Joringel; Crossover]

Les Contes d'Hoffmann

An Hour in Heaven by Quillori

'Venice is always a city of light. It is built of stone, heavy stone that sinks by creeping inches into the mud, but by some alchemy of architecture that stone is so perfectly proportioned, so pierced about with windows and arches, so delicately formed into balconies and curving stairs, that it seems to float, almost to rise up, and the light floods in everywhere, banishing the gloom and dank that should be inevitable in a crowded city being swallowed slowly by a swampy lagoon.' Beautifully written & atmospheric short centering on Giulietta, with a provocative notion implied in the summary

[Added 27/12/2017; Drama; 1000-2500; Les Contes d'Hoffmann]

Literary RPF

A Change of Season by Lnhammer

'But then as if the Empress's words were power, her own returned. Wan-er knew what she must do. If the flood was so bad that groveling would not save her, and it wouldn't, she'd go out riding bravely. / She straightened up. "One might, but one would be wrong." / The Empress's eyes narrowed. "Would one," she said dryly.' A spare, tightly structured piece set in Tang dynasty China, centered on the evolving relationship of two strong women, a poet & an empress, with sprinklings of Chinese poetry & lashings of palace intrigue

[Added 25/12/2017; Character Piece; 2500-6000; Literary RPF]

Like fruit, my soul by Breathedout

'For once it is easy. One could make any space needed, one feels; anything needed; with one's fingers gliding fireglow-warm over the smooth glass. So simple, it appears now, to be generous. Why is one not always generous? Why does one keep oneself back so, from one's fellows, twenty-nine days out of the month?' Thoughtful & suitably erudite stream of consciousness from a tipsy Virginia Woolf, while she's revising Mrs Dalloway & contemplating Vita Sackville-West. Reads like a censored extract from her letters

[Added 25/12/2017; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Literary RPF]

LM Bujold – Chalion series

all the words that ever were or ever will be by Tequila Mockingbird

'He had the makings of a saint, carved into the hollowness of him, and that was no mean thing. She had been precious low on saints, in the last century or so, and although his poetry was very bad, he had written some poetry.' A Daughter's eye view on Curse of Chalion which does a good job of pulling off the god's viewpoint, and uses deft touches of humour to lighten the melodrama. The ending is perfect

[Added 23/12/2017; Drama; 2500-6000; LM Bujold – Chalion series]

First Choices by Rsadelle

'Annual Pride parades heavily feature celebrants dressed in the Bastard's white and signs with slogans referencing the Bastard's favor. "The Bastard Loves You" is a favorite slogan of Pride t-shirts.' Clever fusion, pastiching a New Yorker article, that explores how Quintarian & Quadrene religions might play out in modern America -- complete with statistics from the Pew Research Center. Funny & moving by turns

[Added 23/12/2017; Drama; 1000-2500; LM Bujold – Chalion series]

The Saint, the Scholar, and the Whale by Neotoma

'Learned Bavo was pacing in a side courtyard, with his Islander guards like lazy cats around him. They were enormously tall, as if tree trunks had decided to put on clothes and walk like men, and their bushy beards made them even more like moving shrubbery.' This enjoyable & inventive tale, set in Jokona, succeeds in melding not just Penric–Desdemona canon but also The Hallowed Hunt with the Chalion sequence. The thoughtful world-building is supported by strong OCs

[Added 23/12/2017; Drama; 6000-20,000; LM Bujold – Chalion series]

Lord Peter Wimsey

A Brief History of the Patronage of Beatie Wilson by AlexElizabeth

'Beatie found death interesting. Men and women and children across the country, across the world, were dead and burned, gassed and shelled, their towns and possessions and lives reduced to rubble along with their souls. Beatie felt a kind of vague, unfocused sympathy for humanity in the summer of 1945.' A refreshing absence of saccharine marks this thoughtful postscript to Gaudy Night, which details the fate of Annie Wilson's eldest daughter. Peter & Harriet's voices are perfect, and I particularly enjoyed the depiction of their relationship. (Crossover with Agatha Christie's Cat Among the Pigeons)

[Added 23/12/2017; Drama; 6000-20,000; Lord Peter Wimsey; Crossover]

Moby Dick

Event Horizon by Norah

'It's a solemn thing, to go out into the dark. Disc mining's not an occupation for those who like comfort or the familiar. The dark looks back at you in a way you can't explain.' Space AU short, with fascinating world-building bubbling beneath the Queequeg/Ishmael foreground

[Added 24/12/2017; Romance/Erotica; 2500-6000; Moby Dick; Adult]

Neil Gaiman – American Gods

the green, green grass of home by Apricot

'Shadow wondered if she'd come to Los Angeles to be an actress, or a dancer. ... The woman sitting next to him wasn't unattractive, but she had a face that ought to have been captured in marble, rather than in film.' Apricot creates a real feel of canon in miniature here, with a road trip, potent dreams & plenty of new gods to meet

[Added 23/12/2017; Drama; 2500-6000; Neil Gaiman – American Gods]

Science RPF

The Ordinary Operations of Nature by Sharksdontsleep

'My mother ... fears the dangers of a turned Ankle or my being lost to the Waves of the Sea. But I feel as though I must - the Divine has blessed me with some sense of these things, and I must do my part to reveal what the Creator has given us, that through hammer and chisel we might search for the evidence of Things not yet seen.' Mary Anning's correspondence with Charles Lyell starts by charting Anning's journey from sycophancy to anger, and then takes an entirely unexpected direction, which I won't spoil here. Unusual & atmospheric

[Added 25/12/2017; Character Piece; 2500-6000; Science RPF; Crossover]

The Saga of Hearthruler Whitebeard and Snowsgrace Dreamfinder by Melannen

'All knew it was a place of great power, for the Old Ones had built a massive earthen rampart around it, in the shape of the storm's lightning, and in the center of the ramparts were many great standing stones with inscriptions of wisdom on them, and more hidden knowledge as well, in places known only to the most powerful of the priests.' A hugely enjoyable fusion which places 19th C London cholera outbreak figures into an original future based on the nuclear waste disposal report -- the kind of story that's one of Yuletide's joys. The saga voice is charming, the characters shine in their odd setting, and I particularly loved the investigation. My favourite of several interesting takes on the report for Yuletide 2016

[Added 24/12/2017; Drama; 2500-6000; Science RPF]

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers

oh it's fun to hunt and shoot a gun, or to catch a rabbit on the run by Magpie Mountains

'"- stood right there by the flannels and eyed Sarah and Dorcas and the other girls up when they came in, like they was trussed hams. Said they were pretty enough but he was gonna look you all over 'fore he decided. Why, Mr. Schmidt told me the fellow hung about outside his store and eyed up his draper's dummy before he realised she weren't real-"' Satisfying AU that applies a fix-it plaster to a very problematic film, without making Milly too unrealistically feminist. The story develops a strong narrative voice for her, and brings her frontier town world to life

[Added 24/12/2017; Romance/Erotica; 6000-20,000; Seven Brides for Seven Brothers]

Shakespeare's histories

Honey and roses by The Alchemist

'It was something like how he felt at the end of the Easter vigil, when after a long night of prayer and liturgy the sun rises and the new fire is lit. And it was something like that perfect stage of drunkenness when care has departed and sickness not arrived, when the heart is filled with love and fellowship with all. / He licked his lips and tasted honey.' An inspired fusion of Henry IV Part 1 & Richard II with Euripides' Bacchae. Clever, with a particularly intriguing sting in the tail

[Added 24/12/2017; Drama; 2500-6000; Shakespeare's histories; Crossover]


bears the crown by Bloodbright

'She had been long inured to the sight of death, of gore, and at any rate had never much troubled herself with the pain of others; and yet something in her heart stirred uneasily when at last he fell, and the rats burst from his belly; and the young queen had felt the first gnawing behind her own navel.' A weird, dreamy, ambiguous sequel to Suzanne Vega's 'Queen & the Soldier', reminiscent in tone & theme of Wilfred Owen's 'Strange Meeting'. Bleak but with a thread of hope

[Added 27/12/2017; Drama; 2500-6000; Songs]

Stephen King

Bird and Bear and Hare and Fish by Scioscribe

'Roland said, "There was a woman who had a wall in her home painted to look like a city. When she looked closely—and she spent many hours looking closely—she could even see the eyelets in the clasps of the purses carried by its citizens, could even see the freckles on a boy and the ribbon in a girl's hair. She fell into the study of it. And, as such things often do, her study turned into her occupation turned into her obsession. Not that that is something I would understand," he said with a smile so beautiful in its ruefulness that all three of his companions separately felt that they should memorize it.' I don't know Dark Tower, but the fantastic story-within-a-story draws the reader into this ensemble adventure. Deservedly widely recommended

[Added 27/12/2017; Drama; 6000-20,000; Stephen King]

Works of Mercy by Scioscribe

'So that was how Jenny Engstrom left Vegas just ahead of Randall Flagg's tantrum. She rode a motorcycle and slept during the day because it seemed to her that nighttime was his time, when the gaps between the stars each looked like his face, and she couldn't sleep with him looking at her a million times over.' Thoughtful female-centric AU of The Stand in which one change leads to insidious escalation and a different outcome. I love Jenny's characterisation, and how it explains her choices in the original

[Added 24/12/2017; Drama; 2500-6000; Stephen King]

The Threepenny Opera

The Bugger's Opera by The Alchemist

'"Silly Milly, Tawdry Audrey. Hercules and Hylas. Dolly and Edna." The finger lands on a gaunt face, coyly hidden behind a huge fan. "We called him the Memsaab. Would have dressed like that all day every fucking day if they'd let him." 'Like that' was in something resembling the costume of an Afghan Begum.' Clever, multi-layered origin story for Mack the Knife during the Siege of Kandahar that makes matchwood of the fourth wall & even features a cameo from a young John Watson

[Added 26/12/2017; Drama; 2500-6000; The Threepenny Opera]

Twelfth Night

movements of the mind by Lost Spook

'Feste smiles and gives a bow of his head in acknowledgement, running his fingers over the lute. "Strange, is it not? For when it lived, it was dumb as that post and yet now, dead, it sings sweet harmony."' Quiet vignette series which develops a plausible take on Feste through the years, and his relationships with Olivia & her father. Lost Spook has a good line in 16th-century wordplay too

[Added 25/12/2017; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Twelfth Night]

Ursula Le Guin – Earthsea

The Ending From the Beginning by Northland

'Even before she fled the Place of the Tombs, Penthe had never been a very good priestess. She had not been one of the novices who could read omens in the flight of birds or the spattered blood of a sacrifice. Still, she knew that the messengers must have something to do with the Place. Who else would ride such fine beasts to seek out an old farmwife in the hill country of Atuan?' A thoughtful take on a future Penthe, which answers a question I'd also pondered. Northland does a good job of fusing Tombs of Atuan with later canon, almost (dare I say it) better than Le Guin herself

[Added 27/12/2017; Drama; 1000-2500; Ursula Le Guin – Earthsea]

The Minnow and the Dragon by Raspberryhunter

'Yarrow had been rather hoping that they might go to Orret's shop to see if new silks had come from Lorbanery. Since Fennel's birth her beloved loom had sat mostly idle in the corner of their house. Yet still she loved to run the fine threads through her fingers, deep sapphire and flaming crimson flowing like water through her hands.' Lovely short, very much in the spirit of the early trilogy, in which Yarrow & Vetch share a brief adventure. Sweet but never cloying, with an ending that brought tears to my eyes

[Added 23/12/2017; Drama; 2500-6000; Ursula Le Guin – Earthsea]

Wagner Ring Cycle

Firebound by Dussek

'The image of fire in her mind flickers, first twisting into a serpent, then into the outline of a wolf, then into the rough shape of a man.' Beautifully written, atmospheric AU, which melds the base myth with the opera plot perfectly. I only wish it were longer!

[Added 23/12/2017; Drama; 1000-2500; Wagner Ring Cycle]

Compiled by the Espresso Addict