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Now that [insanejournal.com profile] hp_beholder's final (*sob*) masterlist has been posted, I can say that my wonderful gift was written by [insanejournal.com profile] evensong14. Thank you! I've also added author names to my recs post.

I wrote:

The Ten Month Career of Professor R. J. Lupin (PG-13, Lupin/McGonagall, Snape/McGonagall) [AO3]
Remus tells himself again and again: He is not still in love with Minerva McGonagall.

It's a bummer that this was the last year for Beholder, though it's not entirely surprising. With the fandom less active overall, it's got to be difficult to maintain enough interest in rarepair fests, especially exchanges. I'm glad I participated this year, not knowing it was the last. I'd have been very sad if I hadn't.

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/45469.html. Comment here or there.
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As usual, there were too many great entries in [insanejournal.com profile] hp_beholder to be comprehensive about this, but here are a few that especially stood out to me.

A Lonely Road (R, Severus Snape/Aberforth Dumbledore) by [insanejournal.com profile] wwmrsweasleydo
A perceptive portrait of Severus and Aberforth's relationship, as well as a vivid picture of the ever-absent Albus, drawn in negative space between them. Every detail adds to the ominous and oppressive time these characters live in, and not a word is wasted.

we lay together on a cold hard floor (R, Severus Snape/Peter Pettigrew) by [livejournal.com profile] tarteaucitron
Over the summer holiday, the house hourglasses are taken down and Severus and Peter can approach each other as something less like players in a game, and more like people. The author strikes a perfect balance between pointing out the effects their choices have had and will have on their lives, while also making it clear that these aren't free choices -- they're constantly being pushed, by so many factors.

No Charity (PG, Aunt Marge/Rita Skeeter) by [personal profile] fluffyllama
Two threads are woven together well here: A deft and funny satire of English conservative culture as embodied in Marge, as well as an intriguing deconstruction of Rita and her self-created identity as a media gadfly. You wouldn't think it would work, but it does. The author struck just the right balance between letting the characters be vulnerable without sanding off the rough edges.

A Short Treatise on the Social Lives of Ghosts (PG, various ghost pairings) by [personal profile] dueltastic
Utterly charming and hilarious.

[eta: authors]

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/45306.html. Comment here or there.
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My entry for this year's [livejournal.com profile] hp_kinkfest just went up:

Almost Innocent (NC-17, Alicia/Katie) [AO3]
Katie Baby just can't wait for Mummy to get home.
content notes: Age play, subspace/littlespace, sex toys, "getting caught" kink, light incest play (depending on how literally you interpret "Mummy")

I will admit that this is only marginally fanfic, in that it barely matters who the characters are and what universe they live in. I really just wanted to write this kink, and I enjoyed the hell out of it. It's okay to be a little self-indulgent sometimes, isn't it? :)


On a very different note, my gift for [insanejournal.com profile] hp_beholder was posted, and it is definitely fanfic of the very best sort:

Elegy for a Goat (PG-13, Severus/Aberforth) by [insanejournal.com profile] evensong14
Ab has never been fond of his brother's protégés, but he's always had a weakness for goats. He's not sure what to make of Severus Snape.

Lushly written and richly characterized, it's hard to say enough good things about this story. I think I already wore myself out just commenting on it, so I'll just say: Read it! It's great!

[eta: author]

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/45012.html. Comment here or there.
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Today's the last day to sign up for [insanejournal.com profile] hp_beholder!

As I was writing my sign-up I was thinking about how my requests in exchanges tend to vary a lot, even in the same exchange from year to year. My interests fluctuate, so one year I might ask for slash, another for femslash — one year I'll ask for darkfic, another for romance, and so on. I've done Beholder for a few years running, and each time my requests have been different and so have my offers. It's not that I've stopped liking the characters I preferred before, it's just that once I've written some character or pairing or topic I tend to feel like, well, I did that already. Not always, but often. Same for receiving a gift fic about them.

I guess it's easier to feel this way in a fandom with such a huge range of reasonably fleshed-out characters, but sometimes I feel like I'm the only one! It seems that most people have their favorites and they pretty much stay the same. They're not writing one Snape fic and moving on, they're writing him year after year — and that's not a bad thing, it's just not how my head works. There's no way I would copy and paste my Beholder sign up from last year, because it doesn't reflect what I feel like now.

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/42844.html. Comment here or there.
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Well, the master list is up and another year of [insanejournal.com profile] hp_beholder is at an end. My lovely gift was written by [livejournal.com profile] chaos_rose, and I've added author names to my post of other recs.

I wrote:

Triptych on the Sword of Ragnuk (R, Flitwick/Griphook) [LJ - AO3]
Summary: The beauty of a man may bring pleasure for an hour, but the beauty of a blade is eternal.

I've always been curious about the goblins in HP and their place in magical society, and felt it was a loose end after Book 7. The whole plot thread about the sword, and the open mistrust and easy betrayal on both sides made me want to dig deeper. I offered Griphook hoping I'd get a chance to write about that, and [livejournal.com profile] smallbrownfrog's prompts ended up being exactly in line with what I was already thinking about. I hadn't offered Flitwick, but her request for him reminded me that he's supposed to be part goblin, and that goblins legally can't even use wands (let alone teach how to use them), and how much of a loose end that is!

I wasn't sure how it would go over, since I have to figure not everyone finds Griphook as magnetic a character as I do :P, and I was glad to see people got what I was going for and appreciated it.

Yay like-minded people! Yay Beholder! :D

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/31744.html. Comment here or there.
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And coming in just barely under the wire before reveals, here are some [insanejournal.com profile] hp_beholder recs. As usual, there were many excellent entries, and some I haven't managed to read yet (people need to not write so much!). These are just a few that stood out to me.

A Dictionary of Silence by [personal profile] woldy (R, Moody/Lupin) [LJ]
This is a really good portrait of how bad things were for Lupin after James, Lily, and (he thinks) Peter's deaths. The dynamic between him and Moody is very well and subtly drawn.

Sunlight in the Garden by [personal profile] lyras (R, Pomona Sprout/Alice Longbottom) [LJ]
A bittersweet story about all those left behind after Frank and Alice's hospitalization, and how they become a family of sorts.

Run with the Pack by [livejournal.com profile] gryffindorj (R, Sirius Black/Aberforth Dumbledore) [LJ]
Sirius is on the run, and he and Aberforth have more in common than you'd expect.

The Muggles Have a Word for Them by [personal profile] kelly_chambliss (PG-13, Rolanda Hooch/Aurora Sinistra, Fat Lady/Violet) [LJ]
Charming character voices, world-building, and humor really set this one apart. Not to be missed.

Cabled Socks and Cognac by [livejournal.com profile] notearchiver (R, Slughorn/Dumbledore) [LJ]
I love how entirely themselves they both are in this, allowed to like what they like and want what they want.

A Cliff in July by [personal profile] miss_morland (R, Marietta Edgecombe/Millicent Bulstrode) [LJ]
Subtle relationships and gorgeous imagery!

[eta: authors]

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/31610.html. Comment here or there.
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Lucky me, it's the first day and already my lovely gift has been posted: A Life of High Adventure (PG, Molly/Arthur). Molly backstory! Yay!

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/29307.html. Comment here or there.
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Ugh, my computer. Long story short, taking it to a local repair place did not go well. I'm in the process of ordering new stuff online. Still using [personal profile] hannelore's computer for now, so I haven't been keeping up with LJ/DW like I usually do, but fandom marches on:

Nominations are open for [livejournal.com profile] rarewomen, a multifandom fic exchange focusing on female characters in small fandoms, and rare female characters in large fandoms. This was new last year, and I had a blast writing in it, as well as receiving an amazing gift in a nonexistent fandom-of-my-heart, so I'm very excited it's running again!

Sign-ups are open for [insanejournal.com profile] hp_beholder, a fic and art exchange focusing on the HP characters who get less love because they're not considered conventionally attractive. Such a great range of amazing stuff always gets written and drawn for this.

Also, posting for [livejournal.com profile] hp_kinkfest has started, and my first entry for it is up:

     The Secret Incantation (NC-17, Hermione/Sirius)
     Content notes: Underage sexual activity, age difference (15/mid-30s),
     dominance/submission play including body worship and orgasm denial.

I wrote this to the very first prompt on the list (Hermione/Sirius femdom), and as soon as I saw it I knew it was the prompt for me. :D I love to play with different kinds of power dynamics, and I've only rarely written Hermione as a main character, so I had a lot of fun writing this. You can also read it on AO3 if you prefer.

So what are you guys all up to lately?

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/27240.html. Comment here or there.
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Now that the master list has been posted, I can share that my excellent gift A Magical Moment in the Life of Petunia Dursley, Née Evans was written by [personal profile] pale_moonlite!

And in case you missed it, I wrote The Two Names of Xiomara Rolanda Hooch, which you can also read on LJ, on DW, on AO3, or in the Library of Babel.

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/22326.html. Comment here or there.
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Title: The Two Names of Xiomara Rolanda Hooch
Rating: PG-13/Teen
Pairing: Hooch/McGonagall
Word Count: ~2400
Summary: Hogwarts changes. She changes.
Notes: Written for [livejournal.com profile] noeon in the [insanejournal.com profile] hp_beholder exchange. Thanks to [personal profile] delphi for taming the wild semicolons and to [personal profile] bethbethbeth for running the exchange!

The Two Names of Xiomara Rolanda Hooch )

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/22051.html. Comment here or there.
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Greetings, earthlings - this week I had a really bad pain flare and couldn't get jack shit done. However, I did manage to catch up on everything in [insanejournal.com profile] hp_beholder, I think, except for the one entry that is an actual novel. How do people find the time?!

Anyway, a couple more recs before reveals happen this weekend. There really were a lot of excellent stories - too many to go through listing them all.

Eyes Open (NC-17, Moody/Snape) by [personal profile] delphi
Pretty sure I know who wrote this, but if I'm wrong, someone has a new fan! This is a juicy interrogation fic, the kind that breaks down the psychology of both the prisoner and the interrogator in a wonderful way. It made me want to go watch the first season of Homicide.

Professor C. Binns: A Personal History (PG, Cuthbert Binns/Walburga Black, Walburga Black/Orion Black) by [livejournal.com profile] purplefluffycat
This looks like a crack pairing, but isn't. In fact it's a very touching and natural explanation of who Binns is, and who Walburga sadly became. Instantly added to my personal head-canon.

And an [community profile] hp_diversity rec:

And Giant-Winged Whatsits (G, Dean/Luna) by [livejournal.com profile] thimble_kiss
A gorgeous snippet of their lives after the war. Lovely.

[eta beholder authors]

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/21826.html. Comment here or there.
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First, a Remix Redux rec:

King of Serpents (The Scrapbook Remix) (Teen, Tom Riddle gen) by [personal profile] delphi
Young Tom Riddle researches the life of Salazar Slytherin. Tom's characterization is chilling and brilliant, and Salazar's backstory explains so much... Don't miss this one, it's a real treat.


And some [insanejournal.com profile] hp_beholder recs, though I've fallen far behind in my reading:

A Story of Warnings and the Ignoring Thereof (PG-13, Irma Pince/Horace Slughorn) by [livejournal.com profile] therealsnape
I didn't expect this at all. At Albus's funeral, Horace looks back and takes us on a whirlwind tour of his life and misadventures. Great, confident Sluggy voice.

One More for the Road (R, Sirius/Rosmerta) by [livejournal.com profile] xylodemon
The brilliant character voices, sharp writing, and wry humor of this story are a complete delight.

Not Exactly the First Blush of Youth (PG, Galatea Merrythought/Griselda Marchbanks) by [livejournal.com profile] eeyore9990
An actiony adventure about badass, queer, mature women fighting evil. How often do you get to type those words in that order?

An Affinity for Dangerous Creatures (R, Silvanus Kettleburn/Millicent Bulstrode + Severus Snape) by [livejournal.com profile] anguis_1
There has been an abundance of good Millicent fic in this fest, and her characterization is particularly outstanding in this one. She's cantankerous, competent, and passionate. Snape's role in the story can't be described without major spoilers — you just have to wait and see how awesome it is.

Courtship of a Common Man (R, Viktor Krum/Percy Weasley) by [livejournal.com profile] synn
I love how the distance and isolation Percy feels is shown here, and Viktor's down-to-earth charm and maturity.

[eta beholder authors]

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/21684.html. Comment here or there.
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I have a growing list of recs kicking around in my head that will be posted at some point, but it would be churlish of me not to set aside procrastination long enough to point to my lovely gift fic on [insanejournal.com profile] hp_beholder.

A Magical Moment in the Life of Petunia Dursley, Née Evans (R, Petunia/Snape, Petunia/Vernon, Petunia/Lily [of sorts]) by [livejournal.com profile] pale_moonlite

I asked for a story about Petunia in a relationship with a magical person and what that would mean to her, and said that I liked Petunia/Snape (which I thought it was likely I'd get) and had a pet thing for Petunia/Lily (which I never dreamed I would get in a million years). You guys, I GOT BOTH! And even though I didn't delve into how I see Snape/Lily/Petunia as a tragic love triangle of obsession, bitterness, and denial, somehow this author just knew.

It is such an awesome feeling when the person who writes for you in an exchange really gets your prompt, especially when you've asked for something out of the ordinary, something that many people would probably pass by just based on the headers (even in a rare character fest). It's a great story and it's for meeeee! :D

[eta author]

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/20768.html. Comment here or there.
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I'm really excited about my assignment for [insanejournal.com profile] hp_beholder. My recipient provided so many cool suggestions and hints of where to go that I'm having a hard time narrowing down the possibilities. I think I'm going to end up writing something I probably would never have thought of otherwise, which is exactly what I hoped for and exactly why I sign up for exchanges. (And why I didn't offer characters I like, but have already written a bunch, like Peter and Slughorn.)

So yes, this is awesome. I'll try to remember this in late March when I'm pounding my head against the keyboard because my eventual fic doesn't want to behave. :P

This entry was originally posted at http://pauraque.dreamwidth.org/17917.html. Comment here or there.

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