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[personal profile] goseaward
see the masterpost for notes on this list.

et-in-arkadia: Three Instances in Bed (5k). What it says on the tin: three times John and Sherlock shared a bed. Some truly excellent dialogue, and some absolutely gorgeous description, and a wonderful character study of their relationship on top of all.

etothepii: Aggressive Mimicry (6k) and Mutual Parasitism (20k). This is a BDSM-everywhere AU, and a disturbing one, with Moriarty/Sherlock as the main pairing. Sherlock's a sub and Moriarty's solution to the pool scene is to make Sherlock have sex with him, and it stays on a knife edge of whether or not this is consensual (and whether or not they want it to be) throughout. Then, in the sequel, they carry on a kind of long-distance relationship, somewhat against Sherlock's better judgment. Dark and fairly violent and warnings for dubcon and noncon.

etothepii: Asteroidea (2k); Highly Intelligent, Observant, and Destructive When Bored (5k); Feels Like Drowning (10k). Crossover AU with His Dark Materials. I've heard a suggestion to start with Highly Intelligent, continue with Feels Like Drowning, and finish with Asteroidea as a prequel, since there's a mystery through much of the second two pieces that's solved if you start with Asteroidea. But I read it with the prequel first and quite enjoyed it anyway, so, up to you. Asteroidea is Sherlock and Mycroft as children, the other two are about Sherlock and John sharing a flat and stumbling towards a kind of relationship, with a bunch of great moments between John and Mycroft as well. I especially like the version of Mycroft in these stories, I have to say.

etothepii: I Used to Live Alone Before I Knew You (11k). Good Omens crossover, where Sherlock and Mycroft are Crowley and Aziraphale analogues, and John moves in with Sherlock thinking he's human. Very enjoyable and plotty, and the details of how, exactly, the Holmes brothers would be angels with distinct back stories are well done.

etothepii: Say my name (4k). An Anthea-centric piece, where she has a disorder that means she can't recognize faces, so she gets a job with Mycroft where she can do a lot of her work electronically. Then she gets tasked with watching Sherlock's website and John's blog. This one's really well-written, and also feels different from a lot of Sherlock fic due to the POV character and the focus of the narration.

etothepii: you need someone to take care of you (but I know it won't be me) (5k), it's easy to trust someone who can't break you (4k), everything you won't tell me (is mapped in your scars) (15k). Another BDSM-everywhere AU, not nearly as dark as the other one, with Lestrade/Sherlock and John/Sherlock as the pairings. These stories deal a lot with the human-scale problems of negotiating a world like this, and also serve as an interesting character study of Sherlock--reflecting back on the canon even though they're set in an AU. I also love the worldbuilding: there's some great thought put into, for example, how John behaves differently with patients depending on whether they're likely to obey him instinctually or not. And just in general it makes me incredibly happy.

(also, a blanket rec for everything etothepii has written: I limited myself so my recs page wouldn't be entirely dominated by him, but anything of his is good enough to be on here.)

findingsherlock: Diary of an Invisible Girl (2k). Sherlock stays with Molly after Reichenbach, and yet in a lot of ways it's like she's still invisible. Oh, this one hurts a lot, but the characterization is spot-on and...well, it's not like post-Reichenbach fic should be happy, right?

greywash: The Good Morrow series (the sensation of falling as you just hit sleep (83k); in deed accomplish our designs (69k), which is still a WiP). Post-Reichenbach fic at its best, with a plot I really couldn't see coming almost anywhere, but which never feels unearned. Gorgeous writing, too, and great characterization--I just can't say enough good things about this series. The bit players (Mike Stamford and Molly, in particular) are wonderful, as are the OCs. And in deed accomplish our designs (in particular) is incredibly hot, if you care about that sort of thing. One of those rare fics which has a life on its own outside the canon while also being perfectly compatible with it.

greywash: Immortal Beloved (25k). The fic where Sherlock hires prostitutes, and how John reacts to that. Nooooot a happy fic, exactly--neither John nor Sherlock is a particularly good person in this story, though in ways that are supported interpretations of canon. In fact, I like it because it's such an unusual but believable interpretation. (highlight to read warnings, or skip this warning) There's a scene at the end that could be construed as domestic partner abuse, or the threat of such, involving a gun.

htebazytook: Incredibly Simple and Very Destructive (7k). Sherlock thinks all emotions can be broken down into chemical reactions, dopamine, adrenaline. John thinks he's missing something. And they have a series of wonderful conversations about it.

juxtapose: In Which Lestrade Has Observation Powers of His Own (Or, "I Think Lestrade Filmed You On His Phone") (2k). Lestrade's POV of John and Sherlock, post-Reichenbach. Sad but lovely and in character.

keelywolfe: Strays (13k). John's 22 and finishing up his medical training, working in A&E; Sherlock is the homeless teenage drug addict he treats and then takes under his wing. The development of the relationship between the two of them is really lovely, and I found this version of teenage Sherlock very persuasive. (highlight to read warnings, or skip) Underage sex (Sherlock is 16, John 22).

ladyflowdi and mirrorskippy: Infiltrate (tear down the walls and the gate) (73k), The Love Song of Two Idiots (8k), (Life Is) a Series of Risks (36k). This is wonderful, long, plotty, with good action scenes and character work. Written after s1, it resolves the Moriarty plotline in a universe where John and Sherlock are in a relationship; I won't say more for fear of spoilers, but this is amazing and visceral and I recommend it very highly, especially the first fic in the series. I want to say a word about some of the content, though: the John and Sherlock in this fic have a really strong sexual connection that includes a fair amount of BDSM, but I still suggest you give it a try even if that isn't your sort of thing. Unlike most fics with BDSM content, it is not the driving force of the plot and it doesn't take up the majority of the running time, though it's an indelible element of Sherlock and John's characterization. That is, it's not gratuitous, but it's also not the dominant element of the fic. Months on from reading this I can still tell you most of the plot--that's how deep an impression these fics made. (Also, got me to read kidfic--the last one has a child in it.) (highlight to read warnings, or skip) Violent--probably the most violent fic I've read in this fandom.

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