hradzka: Cassidy, from Garth Ennis's PREACHER. (Default)
Title: "The Adventure of the Hopping Vampire," part 3 of 3
Author: David Hines
Fandom: Doctor Who (2005): Madame Vastra & Jenny
Wordcount: ~29,000 (full story)/ ~12,000 (this chapter)
Rating: Teen and up
Pairing(s): Vastra/Jenny
Genre: Gen, mystery, horror, casefic
Warnings: action, violence (some of it gruesome), consent squickiness ("monster dubcon" is the closest I can come to describing it), and cliffhangers
Betas: Rheanna, Watersword
Summary:

SOME OF OUR MORE IMAGINATIVE READERS INFORM US that the events of the past few days -- the grisly deaths, the tragic fire, the flying carriage that caused the egregious delays on the Metropolitan and District Railway -- are attributable to the fevered pursuit of a Chinese vampire, known in its native land as a jiang shi, by the adventuress detective Madame Vastra. These readers, whose persistent letters are beginning to become tiresome, claim that this is but one of many times Madame Vastra's unravelling of a mystery has saved all of an unknowing London.

We advise these peculiar devotees that we have yet again sought an audience with Madame Vastra, who, as ever, politely declines comment on any of the wilder rumors in circulation, but wishes it known that any unusual cases requiring investigation may be brought to her attention care of this newspaper.


Excerpt:

In the course of her association with Madame Vastra, Jenny had learned that one should never be early to presume that one was in a bad situation. Very often, some small detail would have escaped notice, or some new development would come to light, or Madame would come up with a remarkable bit of clever talk. It was best, when things looked their darkest, to use a moment to take stock.

Jenny was locked in a small laboratory, where she was the prisoner of a titled noblewoman who was secretly a jiang shi, which was what the Chinese called their hopping vampires but which was really an alien slug riding in the noblewoman's skull. It had just murdered eight women in what Jenny supposed were attempts to fill their heads with more alien slugs. As far as Jenny could tell these efforts had been entire failures and at best had caused the would-be victims' heads to explode. Jenny was likely to meet a similar fate when the jiang shi and its loyal maid Kathleen made their way through the door. Even so, Jenny most sincerely hoped they did not stop trying to make their way to her. If they did they would probably notice that the late Mrs. Everard had wedged a chair against the hall closet door, at which point they would likely open the closet and discover Madame, unconscious and helpless.

Also, the house was surrounded by police who were likely at any moment to burst in shooting.

This is bad, Jenny thought, this is bad and could not be worse, and then she saw that Kathleen was coming with an axe.


Read the rest on AO3. First chapter is here. Second chapter is here. Comments welcome on AO3 or here.
hradzka: Cassidy, from Garth Ennis's PREACHER. (Default)
Title: "The Adventure of the Hopping Vampire," part 2 of 3
Author: David Hines
Fandom: Doctor Who (2005): Madame Vastra & Jenny
Wordcount: ~29,000 (full story)/ 10,500 (this chapter)
Rating: Teen and up
Pairing(s): Vastra/Jenny
Genre: Gen, mystery, horror, casefic
Warnings: action, violence (some of it gruesome), consent squickiness ("monster dubcon" is the closest I can come to describing it), and cliffhangers
Betas: [personal profile] rheanna, [personal profile] watersword
Summary:

SOME OF OUR MORE IMAGINATIVE READERS INFORM US that the events of the past few days -- the grisly deaths, the tragic fire, the flying carriage that caused the egregious delays on the Metropolitan and District Railway -- are attributable to the fevered pursuit of a Chinese vampire, known in its native land as a jiang shi, by the adventuress detective Madame Vastra. These readers, whose persistent letters are beginning to become tiresome, claim that this is but one of many times Madame Vastra's unravelling of a mystery has saved all of an unknowing London.

We advise these peculiar devotees that we have yet again sought an audience with Madame Vastra, who, as ever, politely declines comment on any of the wilder rumors in circulation, but wishes it known that any unusual cases requiring investigation may be brought to her attention care of this newspaper.


Excerpt:

The movement of the coach rocked Jenny from side to side. Her breakfast had gone down well enough, but it sat uneasily, and left a sense of queasiness and a bad taste in her mouth. Of course, that might also have been the prospect of slicing Lady Carrington's skull in two. The jiang shi might or might not be a person now, but it had been an admirable one once. The prospect of killing the jiang shi was, in its way, as alarming as seeing it had been.

And Kathleen welcomed its kisses, and its hands upon her.

"Why wouldn't she come with me?" Jenny said.

"Hm?" said Madame, shrouded in her hat and veil.

"Kathleen. I grabbed her hand, and I said, 'Run.' She didn't run, ma'am. Why not? Yes, she loves Lady Carrington, but after what she's seen -- "

Madame closed her self-writing book, with one clawed finger marking her place. "Supposing that one day I came to you, my dear, and said, 'I cannot tell you how much I loathe my present life, Jenny. Hiding my form in veil and cloak, denied the proper respect for my consort, the stench of humans in my nostrils. Let us kill them all and rule upon the rubble. The Silurians shall rise again, and you shall be consort to their Queen.' What would you do?"

It was not as difficult a question as Madame thought, because Madame was prone to grumbling something very similar while she was paying her taxes. "Make you a gin and a bath, ma'am."



Read the rest on AO3. First chapter is here. Comments welcome on AO3 or here.
hradzka: (pointy teeth)
Title: "The Adventure of the Hopping Vampire"
Author: David Hines
Fandom: Doctor Who (2005): Madame Vastra & Jenny
Wordcount: ~29,000 total, in three parts, with cliffhangers. I'll probably post one part a week.
Rating: Teen and up
Pairing(s): Vastra/Jenny
Genre: Gen, mystery, horror, casefic
Warnings: action, violence (some of it gruesome), consent squickiness ("monster dubcon" is the closest I can come to describing it), and cliffhangers
Betas: [personal profile] rheanna, [personal profile] watersword
Summary:

SOME OF OUR MORE IMAGINATIVE READERS INFORM US that the events of the past few days -- the grisly deaths, the tragic fire, the flying carriage that caused the egregious delays on the Metropolitan and District Railway -- are attributable to the fevered pursuit of a Chinese vampire, known in its native land as a jiang shi, by the adventuress detective Madame Vastra. These readers, whose persistent letters are beginning to become tiresome, claim that this is but one of many times Madame Vastra's unravelling of a mystery has saved all of an unknowing London.

We advise these peculiar devotees that we have yet again sought an audience with Madame Vastra, who, as ever, politely declines comment on any of the wilder rumors in circulation, but wishes it known that any unusual cases requiring investigation may be brought to her attention care of this newspaper.


Excerpt:

Jenny had been working for Madame Vastra for more than two years, but it had taken only until the second client to realize that all of Madame's initial conferences would play out according to the same script.

"I have heard," said the nervous voice in the drawing room, "that you suffer from -- a misfortune."

Jenny rolled her eyes and rummaged for the teacups.

"All too true," came Madame's voice. She spoke sadly, because it was expected that she do so. "My condition is alarming, but I have it on the highest medical authority that, while but poorly understood to science, it is not contagious." Jenny mouthed the words along with her; it was impressive how little Madame's tone and timing varied.

"Oh," said the client. There was a faint accent to the voice. A foreigner, Jenny thought.

"The framed documents behind you will give clear testimony to that effect, if it is of any concern for you."

Those documents had been Jenny's own first clue that something was amiss. The first document had been a prominent doctor's testimonial that Madame Vastra's condition was entirely noncontagious. The second had been an even more prominent doctor's testimonial that Madame Vastra's appearance, while initially alarming, was rather romantic, really, when an attractive young parlormaid took the time to appreciate it properly. The third had been a letter from the Queen describing, in shocking detail, exactly how the nice detective could take Jenny's mind off her troubles, and convincingly explaining why Jenny should let the nice detective go about doing those very things.

The strangest part of Jenny's embarking on her new life had not been Madame's horns and scales and oh god her tongue, but that her mistress's first words on embracing her had been, "Bloody psychic paper."


Read the rest on AO3. Comments welcome there or here.
hradzka: Cassidy, from Garth Ennis's PREACHER. (Default)
According to the new toy, my John Ringo book review came in as P.G. Wodehouse, and among my fic, "Jason and Me" came out as Chuck Palahniuk, "Seven Sunday Mother-Daughter Mornings" as Margaret Atwood, "The Cable & Deadpool Yuletide Special" as Robert Louis Stevenson, "Killing Elvis" as William Shakespeare (!), "The Metal frm the Stars" as Bram Stoker, "Cinderella, Made of Steel" as Robert Louis Stevenson, "When Harley Met Kory" as Ray Bradbury, and "Pieces of the Dead" as Douglas Adams or Stephen King, depending on which bits I put in (when I did the whole thing, it came out as Isaac Asimov).
hradzka: "Trust me, I know what I'm doing." (sledge hammer!)
It's funny, but my SPARTACUS office AU, which I wrote pretty deliberately as badfic, reminds me just how much I really dislike fanfic AUs. Part of this is because it turned out worse than I intended, looking at it, but part of it has to do with the nature of fanfic AUs in general.

I don't like AUs for a lot of reasons, but I think the chief one has to do with one of the reasons I don't like porn fic. About ten years ago, I was of the theory that fans wrote porn when the actual material didn't sufficiently capture their interest -- ie, if you really liked THE X-FILES, you wouldn't be writing dumb porn about Scully doing Mulder, you'd be writing casefic in an attempt to emulate the actual show. I don't know if that was true then, but it certainly isn't true now; for a lot of people, porn is the entire point of fandom. But AUs often give me that feeling: if you like these characters so much, why are you putting them in weird scenarios where they're so far removed from what made you fond of them in the first place?

And putting existing characters and dynamics into an AU often is clumsy as hell. Consider mine. )
hradzka: (facepalm)
In my last post, I mentioned the concept of a SPARTACUS office AU. A couple of people wanted somebody to write it. AND YOU GOT ME THINKING ABOUT IT. ARGH.

I kind of hate myself for writing this.


Read more... )
hradzka: Cassidy, from Garth Ennis's PREACHER. (Default)
So, who has a WiP that's stalled out that has bits they're relentlessly fond of? Ages back, I tried to write a Bruce/Cass romantic comedy of errors that revolved around ballroom dancing. The plot, such as it was, was thus:

CASS. "Need more martial arts DVDs."
ALFRED. "I am afraid you've watched them all. Perhaps Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers?"
CASS. *becomes ballroom dancing fiend*
BRUCE. "..."
CHARITY BALL PLOT. *happens*
CASS. *tangoes with Commissioner Gordon*
BRUCE. "..."
CASS. *eyebrow*
BRUCE AND CASS. *tango*
BABS. "Hey, Robin? Don't go back to the Batcave for a while."

Excerpt of which I'm very fond below the cut. )
hradzka: (peej rated pg)
I told you I was writing MONSTERS VS. ALIENS fic. You didn't believe me, did you?

TITLE: "Monsters vs. Escargantua."
SUMMARY: See title.
WARNINGS: Much like the film, there is more character goofiness than story.
AUTHOR: David Hines / [livejournal.com profile] hradzka



Susan had always wanted to go to Paris.

It had been a little girl's dream, and then a teenager's dream, so it wasn't surprising that somehow along the way Paris had gotten tied up with an adolescent, idealized view of romance. She'd decided she would go to see it with the man she loved; of course, she'd had to find him first. And then she'd been hit by a meteor, and a lot of other things had happened; but now, now, finally, the moment she'd imagined countless times had come, and she could finally see --

"Paris!" cried the Missing Link. "The city of love! History, art, romance -- oh, all those lovely French girls on the Champs-Élysées, just waiting to be terrified by a handsome monster -- "

"Escargantua," said Dr. Cockroach, Ph.D, a disapproving look in his abnormally large eyes.

"Well, yeah. That too. But -- Paris!"

All right, Susan thought, she was a shade under fifty feet tall and she was seeing Paris for the first time in the company of three monsters on the back of a fourth monster, which was really the fifth if you counted Susan, which, to be fair, people did.

But -- Paris. )
hradzka: (savannah and catherine)
Over at [livejournal.com profile] schronicles, I've put up a Weaver Family Fic Challenge! After "Seven Sunday Mother-Daughter Mornings," some folks said they want to see more Savannah and Catherine fic, and y'know what? So do I!

So if you like 'em and feel like writing a commentfic or something longer, head over and check it out.
hradzka: (cameron's head)
Things I have to do on my Sunday morning: clean the house, clean the guns, change my car's oil, rearrange the bookshelves, do laundry, do my taxes.

Things I actually do: write SCC fanfic.

Priorities, I has them.

ETA: Um. Wow. Thanks, everybody, for the great response. If you liked this story, you might also like "Cinderella, Made of Steel," which I wrote for Yuletide 2008 (DVD commentary on that story is here). Also, some people have said they'd like to read more fic about Savannah and/or Catherine -- me too! So I've put up a Weaver family fic challenge; if you feel like contributing a commentfic or something longer, please do give it a whirl.

Seven Sunday Mother-Daughter Mornings
by David Hines


SUMMARY: Catherine Weaver wins. Then what?
RATING: PG


Savannah Weaver was sixteen years old when she first dared to broach, even tangentially, the subject with her mother. It happened over breakfast on a Sunday morning. Savannah, still wearing her pajama bottoms and tank top, was eating an omelet with broccoli and tomatoes. Catherine Weaver was immaculately dressed. It had been years since Savannah had seen her mother any other way.

Catherine was eating the same breakfast Savannah had seen her eat since Savannah was five years old: two pieces of toast, dry. )
hradzka: (cameron's head)
Thanks to everybody who commented on "Cinderella, Made of Steel," my Sarah Connor Chronicles fic for Yuletide 2008. It was the most popular of the stories I wrote, and the writing process was pretty interesting. So I thought it would be worth a DVD commentary. Rejoinders, arguments, discussion welcome; this commentary is as much about the character of Cameron as it is about the specific story, and I expect people to disagree on at least some of my interpretations.

If you haven't read the story yet, it's here. The story with commentary is below.

Cameron doesn't sleep. )
hradzka: (pointy teeth)
It's reveal time!

This was my first Yuletide, and I went a little nuts. I wrote five stories. Yuletide's word counts are a little off, for some reason, so all the word counts below are mine:

For [livejournal.com profile] curtana: "The Metal from the Stars" (John Bellairs - Lewis Barnavelt series: 8,628 words).

For [livejournal.com profile] catw00man: "Cinderella, Made of Steel" (TERMINATOR: THE SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES; 5,524 words).

For Fuschia: "A Good Swiss Watch" (RED RIVER: 2,741 words).

For Galadriel: "Aphasia" (APPALOOSA - book or movie: 2,434 words).

For [livejournal.com profile] anotherusedpage: "The Balls of the Bel" (Lois McMaster Bujold - Vorkosigan series: 2,917 words).

Total word count: 22,244. ...yeah.

I think three of these turned out very well. One probably could have used another rewrite, and one was utter crack. I don't think that's a bad batting average, especially when you consider that my fanfic output for 2008 has pretty much just been chatfic. And folks seemed to like all of them. None of them were anywhere near the most popular fic of this Yuletide, but they were all pretty well-received within their fandoms. Of course, in three cases, the stories I had written were the *only* stories in their fandoms, so there you go.

Some notes on individual stories: )
hradzka: "Trust me, I know what I'm doing." (sledge hammer!)
So I invited people to tell me their favorite stories I never wrote as an excuse for me to write a corresponding drabble ([livejournal.com profile] cyano, I'm still workin' on yours), and [livejournal.com profile] cmar_wingnut stepped up in style:

The bed romantically strewn with ammo was a nice touch in your amazing Hammer/Cameron love scene!


...SLEDGE HAMMER! crossover with TERMINATOR: THE SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES.

Okay, I can do that.

This got way longer than I anticipated. It's too big for a comment, so you get a ficlet here. )
hradzka: "Trust me, I know what I'm doing." (sledge hammer!)
I had the oral portion of my quals today. I am now ABD.

To celebrate, the meme that I was planning to do last weekend before I got busy: Post a comment about a story that I have never written ("Hey, I loved that AU where Babs was an assassin!" "Man. It doesn't get better than Rex the Wonder Dog as the new Robin."). I'll do my best to give you a drabble's worth of that story.

I write mostly DC Comics, but could be persuaded to do stuff like B5, BTVS, SPN, SLEDGE HAMMER!, maybe TERMINATOR: THE SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES, or (God help me) John Ringo's PALADIN OF SHADOWS series.

Oh yeah. I went there.
hradzka: (donuts?)
The requested ficlets are finished. Though in a strange twist, my reaction to a prompt requesting Spider-Man and Mary Jane was to imagine them and J. Jonah Jameson in a crossover with Rex the Wonder Dog.

Sometimes I wonder if something is wrong with me. I mean, a Rex the Wonder Dog fixation like mine *can't* be good for you.
hradzka: (pointy teeth)
Blogging for a cause! Throw me something. Anything. A prompt, a pairing, a character name, a scenario, a fandom, and I'll write you a ficlet, *even if I know nothing about the fandom and have to make something up based on what I find in a quick search of Wikipedia and Google.*

You don't have to donate to Jack and Te's Wheelchair Ramp Fund for a ficlet -- but please take a look.



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hradzka: (spidey and mj)
Title: "Pieces of the Dead"
Author: David Hines / [livejournal.com profile] hradzka
Dedication: for Marjorie M. Liu, aka [livejournal.com profile] webpetals, who loves Optimus so.
Author's Note: This story operates in TRANSFORMERS movie continuity with some tips of the hat to other formats. Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] brown_betty for a terrific beta.
Summary: Sam and Optimus take a road trip.


It was a great day for a drive -- warm, sunny, a breeze that you could tell was from the ocean because there was the faintest smell of salt, and tons of roads around the old military base just waiting to be explored. If, that is, you had a car.

Sam Witwicky had one. At least, he'd thought he did.

Bumblebee didn't show at the time they'd arranged, so Sam waited. There was a perfectly good tree to sit under, and there was a good view from the overlook. And he didn't have anywhere else to be. As far as his parents knew, he had a summer internship, and Sam guessed he sort of did. There wasn't a lot of money to it, but he was basically getting paid to hang out with a bunch of alien robots and his girlfriend.

As the sun began its long orange slide from the sky, he realized he hadn't seen Mikaela, either.

Read more... )
hradzka: (pointy teeth)
[livejournal.com profile] petronelle did a drabble exchange post here, and one of her ficlets posited Jason Todd, the second Robin, really enjoying being flown around by Starfire. The character combination and scenario tickled me, so I wrote a sort-of sequel, and liked it enough to post it here.

+++


Happy Thoughts )
hradzka: Cassidy, from Garth Ennis's PREACHER. (Default)
In case you haven't seen it, [livejournal.com profile] petronelle is hosting a DCU fanfic version of the drinking game "Never have I ever." No drinking is involved, but quite a lot of writing is. I share some blame for the concept, but had no hand in the rules, which are quite clever. This could conceivably be played in any number of fandoms. Here's how it works:

  1. Post a comment beginning "Never have I ever written..." and then complete as you like. For example, "Never have I ever written Harry Potter fic with a character death."


  2. Read through the "Never have I ever" posts. If someone has posted one that describes something you've written before, you have to reply to that comment with a new ficlet about the same thing. So, if one of the comments is, say, "Never have I ever written a Harley Quinn and Starfire fic," then I would have to post a ficlet with those characters, because I've written a story with them in it.


  3. For every three ficlets you post, you get to post one more "Never have I ever."


The comments are getting rather numerous, so here are the links to my ficlets in Petra's post:

"Never have I ever written a story in which Cassandra Cain has daddy issues" here, "Never have I ever written a story in which a character says, 'I love you,' " here, and "Never have I ever written the Joker with anyone" here. (Also, I have a sort-of ficlet response in the comments for this ficlet of Te's.)
hradzka: (jim with pipe)
Title: "Minute of Angle"
Author: David Hines / hradzka
Author's Note: Set in and around ROBIN: YEAR ONE; those who've read it will recognize some of Chuck Dixon's dialogue.
Acknowledgments: For [livejournal.com profile] petronelle, because everybody needs another reason to love Jim Gordon. Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] nos4a2no9 for the beta.
Summary: Jim and Babs, in the early days. There are a lot of things Jim isn't exactly free to admit. That he has a daughter is one of them.


Sometimes a man shouldn't get what he wants.

He never knows he shouldn't until it's too late. Until he's lost something else forever, something more precious. Something he never even knew he wanted.

Jim Gordon wanted his brother's wife, once. )

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