|ANTRIM, BRENDA: "Surprise!"|
One day at the station, Blair gets the surprise of his life.
|Blair spat a leaf out of his mouth, prodded backward experimentally against the bulk blanketing him completely, and tried very hard to catch his breath. Where the hell had THAT come from? One minute he's typing up lecture notes while Jim catches up with some paperwork, the next minute his partner goes totally nonverbal, tosses him in the truck, takes him out into the middle of the rain forest and fucks him senseless. Then falls on top of him and tries his best to suffocate him.|
|Welcome to the Twilight Zone.|
is basically a PWP and it's all about the fun. A very
entertaining story, it makes me smile every
time I read it.
|ARISTIDE: "Fruit Of The Vine."|
Blair comes home one day to find a terrified woman fleeing from the loft and finds Jim zoned out with a mammoth erection.
|Jim was flat on his back in the middle of his bed, splayed out on rucked and twisted sheets while all the auxiliary bedding and pillows had been flung here and there on the floor. He looked like ground-zero in the aftermath of some kind of carnal detonation; he looked like a freeze-frame in an upscale porno film; he looked... weirdly alluring.|
|A story that
deals with Jim's senses and the problems it can bring to
sex life. Lovely story from Blair's POV--very sweet and well
|ARISTIDE: "Paying Silence."|
Blair and Jim come home dirty and tired from a hard day - and it happens again. And Blair knows he will pay for any pleasure he receives again and again--in a terrible silence that has become increasingly hard to bear.
|A horrible travesty of passion here—I'm straining back towards him, as far as I can get and still stay standing, and I swear to God I can feel him straining towards me; hurting to touch me so bad it's amazing his cock doesn't just rip free from his body and go for it—and here we push towards each other fiercely enough to spin the world off its axis and yet he's back there and he's in charge and he's not touching, not touching me; fucking a nonexistent ass while I fuck his nonexistent cock and then we come, his seed hot on my spine while mine jets over my chest, my chin, down into the flooding, pounding sink to whirl away and disappear into an empty, empty dark hole.|
|The edge of the sink is convenient and cool; a lovely, serviceable place for me to rest my head—if I have to throw up, once I get done with cursing me and him and the terrible, terrible silence; this is the place to do it. I can rest here and breathe, listen to my heart return from racket and roar to sad, thudding existence; rest easy and remember that I really am a good person and my life is mine and alone does not mean lonely.|
Aristide's first Sentinel story and her talent shows clearly
language and the depth of emotion that she manages to produce in this
rather dark story. It's told, rather unusually for Aristide, from
Blair's POV, and his bleak desperation comes shining through the
text. I loved this story, despite the way it broke my
heart. For me, this is the flip-side of Jim's POV in "Shadows And
Light" - although this one is all shadow.
|ARISTIDE & MAIREAD TRISTE: "Shadows And Light."|
Jim comes home drunk and horny after an unsuccessful date and Blair offers to go for a walk while he masturbates - but Jim is appalled at the idea, and things spiral out of control from there.
|So unreal. Such a sharp knife between the halves of his life-- and it was like that, stuff of substance screaming at the cut, deep dark terrifying gash where he was afraid to look as things were splitting, rending, carving a fissure into something he'd always thought of as intact|
|Half of him had drifted away, locked tight into the suspended animation of waking, working, sleeping. It made him feel too light, too dizzy most of the time. He found himself glancing at his feet at odd moments, just to make sure they were really on the ground.|
|And the other half-- well, that was kind of innately perfect all by itself, wasn't it? Reward and penalty, all wrapped up in one convenient package; intrinsic. He touched Blair (a little). Blair touched himself (a lot). Blair caressed, seduced him with words and moans and beautiful, shivering ecstasy, and then Jim went away still full of need. It hurt, yes; it hurt all the time now. But still-- Jim found an unsuspected key to his existence in what he did, what he demanded of Blair; perfect and ideal and utterly transcendent for those few moments, seconds stolen right from the source of misery and made into something... eternal.|
|Afterwards, he paid. Sweet black denial and a face he could show to the world, clinging tight to that horrid, indispensable pain that never left him entirely anymore, a man who was nothing more than a vessel for want.|
|He was his own shadow. And his own source of reflected, refracted light.|
|And he dreamed, always, of kissing Blair. Always. And only that.|
Mairead Triste are pseudonyms for the same author.
stories are those on the lighter, sweeter side of the spectrum, while
Mairead Triste handles the darker side, and when they write together,
there are elements of both on offer. This story deals with Jim's
homophobic reaction to his sexual attraction to Blair. The two
start a sexual relationship - Jim can't help himself - but it's a
fractured one as Jim struggles to accept that he wants Blair in this
way. This is a tough story in many ways but it's well worth it as
Mairead Triste remorselssly shows us a darker side to Jim's nature,
but then Aristide lets us off the hook with a more hopeful
ending. And of course, the writing is fantastic.
Warning: the background for this story link is a bit disconcerting, but it was the only copy of the story I could find on-line.
|ARISTIDE: "Solitary Creatures."|
Jim watches Sandburg prance around the Police picnic with nubile twin teenage girls and smells his arousal. Afterwards, he removes splinters from Blair's thigh and is shocked when he notices Blair has an erection -- and admits it's because of him.
|"If this is working up to you telling me to leave, could we cut to the chase? I've been trying to be patient, but I know how you get when you're talking your way around something, and I don't think I can take it this time, okay?"|
|And in a sudden flash of insight, Jim saw the schism between them, whole and complete. The line between observer and participant fell away, and Jim saw his own limits clear, his own need for distance and the darkness that lay behind it. He winced—that need in him hurt Sandburg; Blair respected his need for distance although he didn't understand it, and consequently suffered the tortures of the unknown while he waited (so patiently!) for Jim to come around, to either confirm or dismiss the fear.|
|(Why do you let me? He wanted to ask, but he couldn't, because as deep as his sorrow ran over the pain he'd never meant to inflict, there was still a wall there, and the wall was there for a reason, dammit, and you don't just wake up one morning and decide that enough's enough, you're going to let almost forty years' worth of that shit go.|
|This is another
story that deals with a Jim who has to come
to terms with the surprising fact that he's switched tracks overnight
from het to gay, but it also has an added dimension dealing with Jim's
inately solitary nature. This story features a Jim POV and also
Bottom!Jim, a fairly rare beast and one to be enjoyed as thoroughly as
possible whenver he appears <g>. Very hot sex scene, too, IMO.
Jim has to go undercover into a skinhead group.
|"Blair," I said. He stopped, instantly. Even his breath caught in his throat.|
|"What," he asked, cautiously.|
|"I'd rather trust you," he said, quietly.|
|"Trust me, too."|
|He nodded. I opened my eyes to look at him, and he stared back again. My mouth went dry, and it was a good thing he didn't have sentinel powers as well. My own heartbeat was spiking in my chest. Blair turned around and closed the door to his room, and I exhaled sharply. Breathing back in, I smelled it.|
|The scent of Blair's arousal.|
|This story has
an interesting plot and I especially like the
that develops between Jim and Blair - it's a lovely balance between
schmoop and realism.
And Pieces." [No Link]
CROSSOVER with Highlander.
Duncan visits cascade where Methos is teaching at Rainier with Blair. He wants Methos to move to Seacouver to be with him but Methos is resisting the idea.
|He sighed and tried to reason with Duncan again. "Come on, Mac, you have to admit Cascade is a good compromise."|
|"I don’t want a compromise. I want you," Duncan said, his lower lip set mutinously. He hesitated for a minute, then said quietly, "But even when I have you, somehow I don’t. The only time I feel like you’re all there is when we’re…" He paused. "I think you only show me bits and pieces of yourself."|
|Methos glanced over at him again. "I thought you liked my bits and pieces," he said, striving for lightness.|
|"It’s not a joke, Methos," Duncan insisted.|
|A strained silence extended between them. No, it wasn’t a joke. Methos took his survival very seriously, and Duncan jeopardized that on so many levels. He’d drawn Methos out, forced a conscience on him, seduced him to feel again, tangled him in Duncan’s complicated life. And now he didn’t just want the bits and pieces—he wanted it all. But Methos wasn’t sure he still had it to give.|
|"What if that’s all I have to offer?" Methos asked.|
|Bone is a
fabulous writer - I haven't read a single story
of hers that I haven't enjoyed thoroughly. If you've been in
fandom more than
five minutes, you should have heard of her and she's on most decent rec
pages for this fabdom. Her writing is classic, brilliant Sentinel
and she's deservedly one of the most well-read writers in this
fandom. I'd follow her to any fandom - hell, I'd read her laundry
list, if she let me <g>. This is an interesting story and I
like the characterisations of all four guys. I like the way the
conflict between Methos and Duncan is handled and the sex is pretty
hot, too. The Highlander storyline is the central one, with
Blair and Jim acting more as yentas who help Methos and Duncan solve
dilemma - but that's okay with me.
|BONE: "Exposing The Nape."|
Blair cuts his hair, exposing his nape, and Jim reacts.
|I'm sitting in a chair that's too big for me, a chair obviously designed for Army recruits and retired Marines; designed for men so busy defending their countries, and their cities, and their right to bear arms, that they haven't got the time to worry about their hair. I'm sitting in a chair, holding the arms so hard I think I'm leaving dents, and the only thing that's keeping me from bolting is the fact that Jim's right there, sitting directly in front of me, so I can see him the whole time.|
|This is very
sweet, told from alternating Jim and Blair
first person POV's.
|BONE: "The Look."|
Jim meets Duncan at Joe’s bar.
|"Duncan MacLeod," he said.|
|"Jim Ellison," the stranger replied, putting a big warm hand inside Duncan's and giving it a firm shake. Not a ball-breaker, Duncan decided. Or at least he didn't feel a need to establish his masculinity with a bone-crushing handshake. Another sign of self-assurance, Duncan thought. Or disregard.|
|He looked down at their entwined hands. No, not disregard. He could practically feel currents leaping between them from their joined hands. He brought his eyes up to meet Jim's. Heat, where cold had been. Fire replacing ice. Whatever Duncan felt, the not-a-stranger-anymore felt it, too.|
Duncan's first person POV, this fairly short
story by the talented Bone shows the so-called PWP format at its best –
forwards the story and the characterisations with every line. It
may be short but this story packs a powerful punch and captures the
essence of both men brilliantly. I will read anything by Bone,
who is another of my favourite authors.
|BONE: "Look Again."|
When Jim’s business in Seacouver is finished, he looks up Duncan again and takes him back to his hotel room.
|When he brings it over, I ask him if he's Joe, and he looks a little surprised, but nods. I put out my hand and say, "I'm Jim Ellison. I'm a friend of Duncan's. I was hoping he'd be here tonight."|
|Yeah, I know; that's not too subtle, but frankly, subtle's not how I'm feeling right now.|
|Joe looks me over and I can't begin to guess what kind of first impression I'm making. At the very least I'm clean, shaved, and in a decent shirt and khakis. Then he does something weird. He looks over at a red-headed kid down the bar and raises one eyebrow. The kid looks at me, then gives a tiny shake of his head. What's up with that?|
|This sequel is
just as good - if not better - than the
original. This one is told from Jim Ellison's first person POV.
|BONE & ARISTIDE: "Out Of Whack."|
While at a Chinese restaurant, Jim and Blair overhear some of Blair's ex-girlfriends discussing his sexual performances. At first Blair is chuffed but as time goes on he becomes increasingly dismayed at the implications.
|It had begun as fascination-- probably the same kind of thing, he had to admit, that drew people into the freak tent at the circus-- that a guy could come that often, and that fast, and not just once in awhile but night after night after night...well, if he hadn't heard it himself, he would have said it wasn't even possible. If it had been him, there'd be no way he'd even be able to walk the next day, much less zoom around like a tornado on crack.|
|This story is
basically a sex fest. I haven't read a
story before or since that was so funny and so full of such a variety
of sex in just
the one story <g>. And it's Bone & Aristide/Mairead
Triste, which should be enough to
recommend it to anybody. Plus the title - in context - makes me
|BONE: "The Reluctant Patient."|
Jim has hurt himself in the most embarrassing way on a case, Blair has to look after him, and Jim is a rotten patient.
|Ordinarily, I would enjoy the sight that greets me in the bathroom. It's a three-quarters naked Jim Ellison, and that's a whole half more than he even needs to have naked to reduce me to a slobbering puddle. I've looked at him since he brought me home with him. He's been looking at me even longer than that. So far we've been smart enough not to fuck around with the status quo by, you know, fucking around, and believe me, today's not the day to head into that little melodrama, but I'd have to be neutered not to appreciate the view, and I'm entirely not neutered, and so even though he's crankier than a two-year-old who's expecting Blue's Clues and gets the PBS fund-a-thon instead, I'm scoping him out a little. Just a little. Not enough to get myself in trouble; at least not into more trouble. Just enough to plug in the old memory so I when I'm up there in his big wide bed tonight (because, of course, he'll be downstairs in mine), at least I can have a good time.|
|This story is
just fun, pure and simple. Grouchy, injured Jim
Blair a hard time, and then Blair gives Jim one <g>.
|BONE: The "Territorial Imperative" Series.|
This is a series of 7 stories that follow Blair and Jim's burgeoning sexual/romantic relationship. Since its such a long series, follow the link to my Sentinel series page, which gives details of each story.
|BOWEN, KATRINA (ADORATRICE): "Beyond The End."|
AU. Jim never made it out of Peru and Blair is stranded by an plane crash in the jungle. While Blair is forced to have sex with Jim in order to be accepted by the tribe, Blair's professor becomes increasingly unhinged and a danger to all.
|There's a long silence. Then he stands up and steps away from the bed. "No. We can figure something out --" He doesn't finish the thought.|
|I try to laugh. It doesn't sound like much. "Come on, man. I know tribal structures. They're not renowned for flexibility. If you break the rules, guardian or not, you'll probably be killed too, right? Or at least in a lot of trouble. As for me... even if they give you a break, they'd have no reason to keep me around, would they?" He doesn't deny it, and I take a deep breath. "Either we do... *this*... or Vaughan and I end up in one of those big cooking pots like you see in cartoons."|
|"That won't happen. They don't *have* a big pot." It's not much of a joke and I can't say that it relaxes me much. It helps a little, that's all.|
|This is a
well-constructed and fascinating AU peopled with
an absolutely fabulous characterisation of Jim and Blair. The
well-rounded and the depiction of tribal life and Blair's experiences
are extremely interesting.
|BOWEN, KATRINA (ADORATRICE): "Votive."|
Jim remembers Blair.
|Jim had found the box of candles about a week after the funeral. There weren't many traces of Blair left by then. Naomi had come and gone, taking Blair's things with her. Not everything, of course. She hadn't taken his clothes or his books. But the pictures and the carved figures that Blair had collected on his travels were gone. She hadn't asked, and Jim didn't try to stop her. She was Blair's mother. That was her right.|
|All the same, when Naomi had asked if there was anything else, Jim had lied and told her that there wasn't. He wasn't ashamed of lying, though he knew he should have been. But Naomi had almost thirty years' worth of memories to Jim's three. She had so much....|
those stories that hits my death story kink - bittersweet
Jim prepares to tell Caroline that he and Blair are now in a relationship.
|Jim rose and went to stand before the window, mouth suddenly dry, heart pounding. He jammed his hands in his pockets to still their trembling. He hated emotional confrontations with Carolyn. With anyone. He’d never learned to navigate these minefields. Every aspect of his training, from childhood to the military to police work had taught him to disconnect from his emotions. Observe them and if necessary for the mission, ruthlessly suppress them. He could face fire-fights, hand-to-hand combat, reconnaissance in hostile territory with barely a flutter of fear in his belly. But nothing scared him half so much as this. No amount of kevlar or weaponry could deflect a vicious stab from someone who knew your every weakness. He’d at least ceased pretending that the wounds didn’t hurt, bleed. Score one for Sandburg’s latest ‘Admit to Your Feelings’ campaign.|
|I have a
definite kink for "coming out" stories so this one is right up
Matter Of Taste."
Jim comes home to find Blair watching a movie: "The Last Tango In Paris."
|All things being equal, it wasn't a bad date; it wasn't a particularly good date, either, but not bad. Food was good, the club okay, if loud, and Sharon...Sharon was nice. Tall, attractive, not a redhead, which is something I've finally started to clue-in to. I think, had I wanted to, I could have stayed with her tonight.|
|I just didn't want it; at least, I didn't want it that much.|
|I mean, yeah, I could have managed it, but I didn't feel like managing, you know? That sort of thing isn't supposed to be about managing, it's supposed to be more than that. So I just stopped things before they got far enough to be insulting, told her I had a lot to do the next day, early, and begged off.|
|This is a short
first time story and it makes me laugh.
|BRIGHID: "Eros Epistolery."|
The morning after Jim and Blair kissed for the first time dawns and the guys have to deal with the shock.
|The soft thump of the front door closing woke Jim from his fitful doze. His eyes flickered open to instant wakefulness, and he scanned the loft with his senses, stopping when he realized the sounds and scents of his Guide were resoundingly absent. After what had happened last night, he was unsurprised that Blair had bugged out before morning alarms. He knew with rueful certainty that trying to face each other over eggs and algae would have been beyond awkward. What does one say, after all, the morning after one's roommate tries to excavate one's tonsils? There was just no etiquette for that.|
|I like the fact
that it's Blair who freaks in this story, I like the
Brighid has the guys communicating through emails and notes, and I
really like that whole Narnia reference <g>.
|BRIGHID: "Exit Wound."|
Blair is now a cop but it's not working out.
|"This isn't going to change anything at all, is it?" he asks quietly, his voice ragged and breathless and verging on wild; he makes my knees weak. He's always made my knees weak.|
|And I want to lie to him, because the lie would be so close to the fucking truth; this doesn't change anything, yet everything is different now, but how can you explain that when your dick is aching and you've got the taste of Jim Ellison on your tongue?|
|So I just tell him, "No," and then, "get us into bed," and he bites down on my shoulder and we don't make it to the bed for a few minutes more, but he understands the answer, because he closes his eyes and doesn't look at me for the longest time after that.|
|But it's there between us, even if we can't face it, and it has a name. I think: yesterday was one thing, and tomorrow will be something else entirely. Today, we have this.|
|It will have to be enough.|
another author whose writing I admire
tremendously. Her writing is poetic and her descriptions are rich with
detail, like a
medieval manuscript. She shows a wonderful grasp of characterisation
and her use of metaphor within her stories is second to none in fandom.
Brighid can tell a story about everyday events with such skill and
insight that the reader is swept into the reality of her character's
lives. Her palette is always full of rich colours like glowing jewels
and her writing has an ageless charm to it that never fails to
fascinate me. These ares some of my favourite Brighid stories in The
fandom but I'd recommend anything by this author. This is
one of Brighid's more melancholy stories, although I think there's hope
the end. It has a very interesting format, alternating between
the past and the present. The language is, as always with
joy to read, and I love the way she's incorporated the technical
details of firing a gun with the content of her story. The
alternates between fist person Jim and Blair, and I love the pognancy
of this story. It won't be to everybody's taste but I love it.
|BRIGHID: "Imagine My Surprise."|
This is one look at what might happen if Blair had dealt with all the problems raised by "The Sentinel By Blair Sandburg" before things got quite that bad.
|Okay, so maybe in retrospect, "Who the hell pissed in your algae shake, Chief?" was not the best way to get Blair to talk about what's been bugging him lately. It was, however, a damn fine way to learn how to say 'fuck you' in about, oh, eight languages. At least, I assume it was 'fuck you', based on the hand gestures and door slam. For all I know, it might have been "Would you like fries with that?" but I'm betting on 'fuck you'.|
|I really have been working on the insensitive jerk thing; the fact that I noticed something had crawled up his ass and died is a major improvement, trust me.|
|This is really
a funny story. I love the
affectionate/insulting way the Jim first person POV talks about Blair -
it's perfect. I
love the OFC as much as Jim does and I think this is just a very
clever, very funny feel-good first time story about Jim and
more could you ask for?
|BRIGHID: "Living With Perfect."|
Blair has been shot in the leg and while recovering he and Jim go to a BBQ with the guys from Major Crimes.
|This is family. I look up to find Jim watching me, and he's got this real gentle smile on his face and he kinda salutes me with his beer bottle and I realize he knows what I'm thinking, at least a little bit, and feels it too.|
|I decide to blame the lump in my throat on the meds Jim makes me take with my dinner. I don't comment when Simon pats me on the back and clears up my dishes for me, or when Joel covers me up after making me stretch out on the lounger, thinking I'm asleep. Really, I'm just playing possum, trying hard not to be overwhelmed by all of this...this awareness of what I've become a part of. I mean, I've had cousins and uncles and a grandfather and my mother, but with the exception of Naomi, we've always been so spread out, separated by distance and diversity. Never been a Sandburg reunion in my lifetime. This is a new experience to me, and all of a sudden it's a little overwhelming. Good, but overwhelming.|
|It'd just take one more thing to make it perfect.|
|I can live with imperfection.|
|This is a very
sweet first time story.
Austere And Lonely Offices"
In the future, Blair and Jim live together in a house and one night Jim gets some bad news.
|I wake up to the phone shrilling loudly about a foot away from my right ear. Jim snuffles and grunts and reaches over me, grabbing the phone, pulling the cord across my body. "Yeah, Ellison," he says, grumpy and too damned awake for four in the morning when we were working a stakeout until three. I yawn, stretch, roll over and cuddle up to him, but his body suddenly goes stiff and tense and way, way awkward. "Yeah, yeah, Sally, okay, I'll be there. How long ago was he admitted?" I stiffen, too, at that, at the cold control of his voice. Sally. Admitted.|
|Something's happened to Jim's dad.|
|There are no
words for how much I love this story and how eerily it
for me. I love Jim's difficult relationship with his father and
the way Blair deals with his difficult father-in-law.
Blair introduces Jim to the concept of slash and subtext, and Jim begins to realise there's more going on in his relationship with Blair than he had previously suspected.
|Well, either I'm totally blind or these people have overactive imaginations. I mean, yeah, when I think about it, I can see where they're coming from. I can see that Krycek guy being at total bastard but still caring about Mulder and all, but sometimes...well, a cigar is just a cigar. Not everything about human interactions is based in sex, otherwise no one would go to work, never mind wear pants.|
|This is a
wonderful story that deals with a first time between Jim and
Blair and does it in the terms of fanfiction. Brighid cleverly
integrates the terminology and world of fanfiction into The Sentinel
universe and the result is a wonderfully funny Jim POV story that I
absolutely love. This is definitely schmoop <g>.
|BRIGHID: "Wine, Women And Schlong."|
Caught in the office supply room at the University, Blair overhears a conversation that shocks him -- then makes him think about the real nature of his relationship with Jim.
|"You mean he's gay?" Missy asked, and he could hear the light bulb, just freaking hear it going on over her head, and he wondered why the hell he hadn't just freaking asked her out last week instead of playing cool and coy, because there was just no way, no goddamned way he could convince her now, now that she'd had her horribly bad, terribly wrong, embarrassingly inaccurate epiphany.|
|"I believe," said the Dragon, her voice prim and dry and worldly-wise, "the term is bisexual!" and Blair bit back a groan, thinking two blips in the very late 80's does not a bisexual make. It was called experimentation for a reason, for chrissakes! "And you understand, what with his position here, and the type of work his SO does, the need for discretion. We guard their little secret very fiercely here!" the Dragon informed Missy, and he could hear, he could just freaking hear her nodding her pretty blonde head with endearing complicity. A web of women, protecting his secret love from public scrutiny.|
|He wanted to cry.|
|At least it explained why he'd had so goddamned much freaking free time the last few months. Apparently the sisterhood had gotten the word out. In a weird sort of way, it was a little comforting. At least women were still interested. They just assumed he wasn't.|
|He really, really wanted to cry.|
should give you an idea of what to expect from this story --
it's very, very funny. I love the
Blair first person POV and I love the way Blair gradually has his
series of epiphanies. And I love the fact that Jim is the one who
knew the truth all along.
|BRIGHT, LYNNA: "Sanctuary."|
AU. What if Blair did go on that trip to Brazil at the end of the first season?
|Propelled by--a rush of affection, fraternal feeling?--Jim reached out to pat Blair's head. But his fingers stayed; they sank in, conforming to the shape of Blair's skull.|
|The spark, the stunning rush Jim's touch caused, struck Blair like a cop's tazer. His breath went out of him and he sighed, back and thighs breaking into a sweat, looking at Jim goggle-eyed. Surprised... Like Jim, who stared back, eyes like chips of sky. He's touched me a hundred times before now.|
|They'd both felt it--friendship diving, in an act of sheer suicide, into desire. Nowhere to turn and too late. No denying it in their heart of hearts.|
|This story is
one of the first slash stories ever written in The
fandom - and it's a lovely first time scenario.
|BRUNSON, EMILY: "A Place Where No Shadows Fall." Series.|
I love Emily Brunson's writing. She is an amazing author who handles heart-breaking storylines with a reality that I wish other authors could emulate. Her drama is never OTT or cloying, but has a beautiful understatement about it that makes it terribly real. Despite the harsh reality of her prose, there is always a sweetness in her relationships that keeps me coming back again and again, despite the lack of hot sex in her stories <g>.
This is a set of 8 stories that deal with an illness that Blair and Jim must face together. Follow the link to my Series page for complete details of the stories.
|BRUNSON, EMILY: "Detour."|
AU. What if Jim hadn't gone to Sandburg's office and got control of his senses? What if, instead, he'd gone to Caroline's doctor and been considered crazy?
|This man here didn't look quite the same. Oh, still obviously the same guy. But Ellison looked tired, and there was a flicker of anxiety in his blue eyes that hadn't been there a few months ago. It wasn't so specific that Sandburg could attribute it simply to today's visit. More formless than that: a dazed look, with an edge of desperation that made Blair's skin pucker up with instinctive gooseflesh.|
|This is a
brilliant example of what can be done with the
AU genre. The characterisation, despite the different
circumstances, are spot-on
and this story is just so sweet and lovely to read, I can't recommend
it highly enough.
|COOK, LANNING: "Epiphaneia."|
Set after "The Sentinel by Blair Sandburg", Jim gets drunk out of his gourd on tequila and the result is a very funny story, despite the fact that it deals with more serious issues as well.
|"Worm and all."|
|Blair tightened his grip on the phone and flopped onto the sofa, aghast. "He swallowed the worm? God, Mike, do you have any idea how shit-faced he must be?"|
|"I know exactly how shit-faced he is! When a guy starts talking about drowning Mr. Squiggles-"|
|"The worm, Sandburg. The asshole fucking named his worm, okay?"|
|I'm not big on
humour as a genre in fanfic as a rule - for
some reason there's a lot of it out there that I don't find even the
- but this is brilliant, probabaly because it's not straight
'humour'. I seem to prefer stories which have humourous elements
within a more serious storyline. I love both Blair and Jim in
this story and the original characters are wonderfully drawn as
Lanning Cook is a terrific writer, another author I would follow to any
fandom she wanted to write in.
|DARCY, JACK REUBEN: "More And Less."|
What would it mean if Jim was still married to Carolyn when he met Blair? In this particular scenario, Jim and Blair have a one night stand. It is Blair's first time and both men are amazed when simple sex turns into something so much more for both of them.
|He let Blair free only long enough to breathe, his fingers still caressing the glorious cock in his hand.|
|"What ..." Blair murmured, eyes closed, body stiff with wanting. "What's your name?"|
|Shock registered on Jim slowly - but he came to a halt, waiting until those eyes opened and gazed at him, edged with unveiled desire. "Sorry. I ... got distracted. Jim. Call me Jim."|
|I adore this
story, especially the first half that deals
with their initial meetings. The sex is hot and very well-done,
and there is
an incredible sweetness to the developing relationship between Jim and
Blair. However, I thought the characterisation of Carolyn was a
bit OTT - she was made into such a bitch that I had difficulty
believing in the characterisation, and she certainly doesn't seem that
way to me
in canon. Despite this minor criticism, I recommend this
story highly - and it's interesting to finally read a story by a male
slasher. Some people object to the non-American flavour that
creeps into the text on occasion - the author is Australian - but I
don't have a porblem with it, probably because, as an Aussie too, I
don't really notice them <g>.
Jim has a dream - that he is raping Blair, violently and repeatedly - and he is absolutely horrified.
|In the dream, he knew that Blair was screaming, even though Blair's mouth was stuffed with the rough cotton fabric of his t-shirt, even though his screams were muffled and he could only really hear the harsh inhalations of air through Blair's nose.|
|And that was scary enough--god, in the cold light of morning that was fucking terrifying, but what was scarier still was that in the dream he didn't care.|
|If I had to
pick just one author, in all the many fandoms
I read in, to take with me to that mythical desert island, then I would
Francesca. I love her humour, her characterisations, her realism,
her lack of pretentiousness, her understanding that real love is about
the everyday little things that show just how much someone cares, and
I've yet to come across another fan author who has such a flair for
writing dialogue. I'd read anything Francesca wrote and her
stories are the first I recommend to anybody starting out in the
fandom. She's simply brilliant and deserves the accolades and
reputation she's acquired as one of the best writers in
fandom. I think this is my very favourite Francesca
Sentinel story - it's certainly the one I re-read most
Jim is frightened out of his wits and I love the whole scenario,
especially the way Blair deals with Jim's fears when he finds out the
|FRANCESCA: The "Nature" Series.|
The "Nature" series is deservedly on almost every "must read" list of Sentinel fiction you're ever likely to come across. There are 29 stories in the series and I've numbered them for easy reference. Francesca has divided them into 3 main arcs: Nature Versus Culture to Nature's Celebrations comprise the first arc, Nature's Reversals to Nature's Conferences comprise the second arc, and Natures Correspondence to Nature's Blindness comprise the third arc. Francesca has advised that a fourth arc was planned but was never started. Follow the link to my Sentinel series page for full details for each story.
|FRANCESCA: "The Night Sandburg Graduated From The Academy."|
Blair finally graduates from the Academy and Jim helps him celebrate.
|The night Sandburg graduated from the academy, I took him out, boozed him up, and bedded him. It was, as they say, the right place and the right time.|
|This is a great
story. It is typical of Francesca's
later Sentinel fanfiction in that it not only has the trademark humour
authentic dialogue, but it has that gritty, humourous reality that
Francesca does so well, and she has nailed the Jim POV exceptionally
well. If you're looking for hearts and flowers romance you won't
find it in this story, but you will find love. Highly
|FRANCESCA: "Yellow Roses."|
Blair faces a major life decision and the two clash over personal issues as well as matters of principle.
|Jim stopped short. Blair was looking straight through him.|
|Through him--not at him. Blair never looked through him. Blair always looked at him--in friendly greeting, with scientific curiosity, sometimes even with mild irritation.|
|But Blair had lifted up his head at Jim's approach--instinctively, almost animalistically. Had blinked at him--once, twice, slowly, vacantly. Was looking through him, not at him--and now Blair was turning his face away, turning his attention back to the girl sitting next to him, tightening his grip on her hand.|
|This might just
be my absolute favourite Francesca story
of all - the one I admire the most for it's subtlety and the multiple
which the imagery and themes work within the text. This is a
story that deals with a very controversial subject. I think
Francesca was brave to attempt to deal with a subject that inevitably
causes controversy amongst any group of people. I've always
loved Francesca's work but this story pushed my admiration up to
another level - it's superbly executed and I am, as always, envious of
her skill as a writer.
"The Right To Remain Silent."
Set after "The Sentinel by Blair Sandburg" when Blair is entrenched in his new life as a cop, Blair tries to recapture some of his old passions but finds an unexpected new one instead - one that shocks him to the core.
|Jim was tempted to press; Sandburg was hiding something. But the guy was his partner, not a suspect, he reminded himself, and so he let Sandburg wave good-night airily and head into the shower, and he started to shut down the loft for bed.|
|But something made him pick up his hearing, and he could swear he heard Blair subvocalizing, "oh shit oh shit oh shit" underneath the whssssssht of the shower. He wasn't playing with himself, either; this was a panic attack.|
|Well, Sandburg sometimes had them; he led a dangerous life, but the panic never held him back. If he didn't want to share, that was his business. Jim had had five years now to train himself in respecting Sandburg's privacy.|
|Jim just wanted a heads-up, if shit was en route to the fan.|
|I love this
story. It has a small shot of
"case" story and a large dollop of wonderful Jim and Blair interaction
as they deal with
their changing relationship.
LADY RA: "Epiphany
In A Stairwell."
Jim is already questioning his feelings for Blair, as well as his attraction to men, when he comes across Blair dealing with a homophobic cop in a stairwell.
|I hear them, you know. Women. The stuff they talk about would make a sailor blush. They talk about how many orgasms they have, or don't have. They talk about sizes of dicks, techniques, how fast--usually too fast--men come, or how goddamn long they take to come until they've been rubbed raw. They talk about blow jobs and gagging and how gross semen tastes. They talk about how men touch too hard and move too fast. They talk about how men suck at foreplay.|
|Mostly they just talk about how much men suck. I am relieved beyond belief that Carolyn never had too many women friends at the station. That's all I'd need, to overhear some conversation over donuts about how much I suck, in bed or out of it.|
|This is quite a
funny story and I love the way the first person Jim POV
developed throughout. There is a tendency to idealise Blair but
it's not so noticeable that it interfered with my enjoyment of the
|LAURA JV: "Stranger Than Kindness."|
This is a melancholy look at one possible future for the guys. It's very short and hard to find a quote for that doesn't give the whole plot away!
|"Why don't you come by the loft, Sandburg?" I asked. "I'll cook you dinner."|
|We never got to eat the noodles. His kiss was as savage and desperate as it had been the first time, and I backed away. This wasn't Blair, my Blair...|
a lot of
readers aren't gonna like this one! This is a strange and
story - and it's not for the faint hearted or those who always want an
unambiguous happy ending. But I loved it. This is my
absolute favourite story by Laura JV and one of my top ten Sentinel
stories of all time.
|LEMON DROP: "Ocean Moon."|
Blair tries to go on with his life after the disaster that was "The Sentinel by Blair Sandburg".
|A few minutes before the press conference, I had felt calm. Clear. It was as though everything that had come before had been leading to that moment. All my work, my studying, my years in school, my travels, everything was leading to the moment I stood before that bank of microphones and the cameras.|
|Standing in the kitchen washing breakfast dishes, I remembered that moment, that calm. A far cry from how I felt now.|
deals with a subject I have personal experience
with and I think it's handled superbly. A lot of readers have
said that they
don't think Blair would react like this, but I think this sort of thing
can happen to anyone. I love this story because, despite the
melancholy tone that permeates most of it, there is hope and it has
some very sweet moments. It has one of my favourite kissing
slash - I'd recommend reading the story just for that <g>.
and RESONANT: "Nuance."
After the fiasco at the fountain, Jim starts having some very odd experiences with his senses.
|"Chief, she's lying through her teeth."|
|"What?" Blair followed Jim out of the interrogation room, glancing over his shoulder at the woman seated inside. "Why do you say that? I gotta tell you, man, that girl doesn't look like she could kill a mouse." He stepped away from the door and nodded at the one-way glass. Behind it, the young woman clutched her arms across her calico-clad chest and closed her eyes. "Or even stay in the house while somebody else killed it. You're sensing something?"|
|"Yeah. No. I don't know." Jim rubbed his forehead.|
|This story has
an actual plot - a case the two are working
on - as well as some very interesting sentinel mystical stuff
also has one of my favourite sex scenes between Jim and an OMC - it's
sweet and hot, an unbeatable combination as far as I'm concerned.
|LYNNE, MERRY: "Falling Further In."|
Jim watches as Blair gives the press conference in "The Sentinel by Blair Sandburg" and deals with the repercussions in their relationship.
|Between that one heartbeat and the next he sees the podium sprouting a chrome bouquet of microphones, he sees the lights as they shine down on the leather, on the crown of Blair Sandburg's hair, he sees a flashbulb that nearly takes his breath away. He knows what is coming and when Blair Sandburg's eyes come up from the podium and stare directly into the camera that's staring directly into his eyes, Jim no longer cares to breathe and the empty space by his side aches and burns.|
shows Merry Lynne's tremendous use of language,
which is a joy to read.
|LYRICA: "Behind The Storm We Feel."|
Set during the episode "Storm Warning", Jim and Blair are irresistibly drawn together during a storm.
|The worst of the storm seemed to have passed on. The wind was still blowing, rattling a loose shutter on the other side of the house. He could hear the whisper of it against the clapboards, the crash of waves on the rocks along the shore, but the sounds alone he could handle, as long as the thunder and lightning settled down to something manageable to Sentinel enhanced senses.|
|It was something to which he still wasn't accustomed, the way his body reacted to a storm. Not only the buffeting of his senses, the bright light and the sound, but that enhanced *feel* of electricity and sound. Out here, on the island, it seemed even more intense than it did in Cascade, almost as if he was as exposed as the land was, at the mercy of the elements.|
basically a very hot PWP but I think Lyrica has
captured both Jim and Balir wonderfully well. I love all Lyrica's
stories - she
just hasn't written enough of them!
|LYRICA: "Raptures And Roses."|
Set during the first episode, Blair is showing Jim how to use his senses and Jim gives Blair a blow-job in a public toilet.
|I can smell him on me. I can smell him on him, male sweat soaked into that soft white shirt, and in an exchange of spoor, the remnants of laundry detergent leached onto his skin. Deodorant, the cucumber sandwich he ate for lunch, the dusty, antique scent of the book he handled while he was explaining all this to me. His shampoo. His skin.|
|If I tried, I know I could find more. More odors out there. More of him on me. It's a cacophony of smell. Like everybody in the band struck up their instruments at once, all playing a different tune until just one note, one high yellow note, rises above all the others. Conquers all the others. Yellow roses in my mouth, so thick I can taste them. The aroma is like perfume on the back of my tongue. I can feel it, fuzzy and oily. And the only thing that cuts through it is the person who started all this in the first place.|
The plot sounds gross but the reality is that this is a
full of lyrical language and a sensual journey for the senses.
"Raptures and Roses" is a wonderful PWP, the sort of story Lyrica
at - she writes hot sex really well <g>. What makes this
story so unusual for me, though, is the simply sensational way Lyrica
able to capture Jim's sensory experiences in language that is just
CROSSOVER WITH STARGATE.
It's Christmas Eve and Blair rescues a guy who's being attacked in Ranier carpark - but exactly who are these attackers and why is Daniel Jackson on the run, even from his friends?
"A little after one, I think," he answered automatically, his attention still focused on Sandburg's stray. He smelled like Sandburg's soap and Sandburg's organic Guatemalan coffee, too. Jim even thought he could smell the painkillers on the sleeper's breath. Drugged insensible, in all probability, and Jim wasn't sure if that made matters more or less complicated.
|"Really? Wow, merry Christmas. I guess you already know Daniel's here."|
|"Let me guess. He just didn't have anywhere else to go."|
|"Actually he's renting a room downtown, but he was afraid those thugs who tracked him to campus might know where he was living, too. It wasn't safe for him to go back tonight. He asked me to drop him off at a hotel, but --"|
|Jim sighed. "But obviously that was out of the question."|
|Blair looked at him like he was an idiot. "Well, yeah. His right hand is messed up pretty bad, and he doesn't know anybody else in town."|
|"No, and I'm sure he's been making a special effort not to get to know anyone, either." Jim unfolded the print-out he'd brought with him from the station and dropped it in Blair's lap. "Sandburg, the feds are looking for him. Daniel Jackson is a fugitive."|
story is wonderful: a fascinating, plot-heavy story in which the
characterisations are realistic and the action kept me on the edge of
my seat. The relationships between Jack and Daniel, and Jim and
Blair are very close but never quite fall over the line into
slash. I thoroughly recommend this as an intelligent,
well-written, absorbing read.
|SIHAYA BLACK: "Those Who Can."|
Jim has to face some old friends from his past, a particularly brutal murder of a pair of mismatched gay lovers, his capture by a band of mad scientists, and his growing attraction to Blair.
|The bottom dropped out of my stomach, landing somewhere way down in my gut. Not a good feeling.|
|"But why me, Jim?" It came out as a whisper. "Why the hell would anyone be interested in me, unless it was to get to you?"|
|"I don't know, Blair."|
|Oh shit. Jim called me by my name. He must really be worried. I glanced over and caught him staring at me, a frown creasing his face. For Mister Stoic, that was pretty much like having hysterics in public.|
|This is the
quintessential Sentinel "case" story - a
lovely long story that deserves it's place on most Sentinel rec pages
This is a story told from Blair's POV and it's delightfully understated
and the relationship is developed slowly and beautifully throughout the
plot. I can't recommend this highly enough.
|WAX JISM: "Brainchild."|
There's nothing I can say about this short story without giving the plot away - just read the fabulous language below for an idea of what to expect.
|When it comes, expected, the sound of impact is wet; ripe, heavy fruit hitting pavement. The echo stays inside Jim Ellison's skull; buzzing bumblebee hitting the walls. His face has frozen in a mildly neutral expression. His insides are in intermission; he's holding his breath - holding, holding, holding ...|
|He doesn't notice it when the breath grows too cold and sharp for him to contain and it breaks out of him along with a scream, but unfreezing happens in the space of a heartbeat and he is moving, thoughtlessly, mechanically, but fast.|
|This is, in my
opinion, a brilliant, beautifully written
story that a lot of people absolutely hated due to the controversial
matter. I was blown away by the beautiful language and the
emotion behind the action. This is definitely one of my top ten
Sentinel fandom stories. Just - wow.
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