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- Prince of Tennis - Incline by Shi Lin - Okay, seriously? No words for the rabu for Shi Lin here. Because. Um. Yes. AkuTaka. Fabulously wonderful AkuTaka. AkuTaka that I don't think I could have asked for anything more from, short of actual porn. ^_~ AkuTaka that just... it revived my long-dormant love for this pairing, because... argh, it's hard to explain without going into detail about what I think makes AkuTaka work, because that's embodied so perfectly here. Akutsu is not a nice guy, but somehow around Taka, he does things that aren't so bad, that show there might be a decent person in there. Somehow Taka just isn't afraid of him, somehow Taka just knows how to be around Akutsu, how to act that Akutsu can't treat him like everyone else, somehow this person is important to Taka, too. And Shi Lin writes them so that they're the gorgeous, hot characters that I know from the series, somehow she captured that way about them that makes me find them wildly attractive even if they aren't my usual type of bishounen. *RABUS* (AkutsuTaka.)

- Prince of Tennis - Gravel by velutlunas - I admit, lately I've been very locked into TezukaFuji fic with my waning interest in TeniPuri, but this AkuTaka fic happened to catch my eye, especially since it was rated NC-17. AkuTaka smut? I was so there! And this was nice for the intensity, which is something AkuTaka has to have to it, in my mind. The writing was lovely, the kind of smut that just makes me purr--intense, but pretty, too. And I liked the interaction between Akutsu and Taka--Akutsu is still... well, Akutsu, but somehow nicer around Taka. And, I admit, it's nice to see Taka enjoying it, too. ^_^ (AkutsuTaka, graphic content.)

- Prince of Tennis - Fever Dream by kojicrisp - I'm not sure what made me want to look for Akutsu fic this morning, but I'm very glad I did, because, eeeeeeee, when AkuTaka is done just right, it puts me into the same bouncing gleeful sort of mood that any of my other favorite pairings do. (The only reason I don't go on about this pairing more is because not nearly enough people write it. *pouts*) And just... there's a certain line to hold with Akutsu, he's not a nice guy, but he's not completely evil, either. This fic strides that line perfectly... and then gives him a headcold and does that perfectly as well. It's one of those story ideas (Akutsu gets sick, somehow Taka ends up taking care of him for a bit) that... it could have so easily gone bad, but it never did, not even for a moment, and instead wound up being one of those stories that just absolutely, utterly nails the characters and their interaction. Akutsu's personality was never really lessened anywhere in this fic, it's still all those harsh words and hard edges, yet somehow, he wasn't a complete asshole to Taka, who was also just completely perfect with his lack of fear of Akutsu, but not being a complete doormat, either. I was also impressed that the author got down the feel of a cold, how incredibly uncomfortable it is... and yet still filtered that through Akutsu's personality and made a fic that... it both made me grin like an idiot the entire time and snapped it into perfect clarity for me, because I could hear Akutsu's voice in my head, that's how pitch-perfect I found his dialogue. Augh, why does this fandom deny me more of this pairing? ;___; (AkuTaka, some light language since it's Akutsu.)

- Prince of Tennis - Odd Couple by Pout - There's something about this fic that makes me laugh hysterically every time I reread it. Something about how bizarrely clearly I can picture the whole thing and just hear Taka-san saying those things. It's just... it's great, one of those things that shouldn't have worked, but somehow wound up being an utterly priceless gem of a fic. So much love for the cackle-inducing AkuTaka. (AkuTaka.)

- Prince of Tennis - Habit by Pout - (Again, I believe I steal a rec off tin, who I have no idea how she finds all this fabulous stuff! *__*) This was just... there is never enough AkuTaka in the world, much less the kind that vaguely hurts, yet makes me feel happy because I can just feel that sense of tension/attraction/connection/whatever there. This fic's harder edges were wonderful, that Akutsu never stayed, how much it hurt Taka-san but how Taka-san always forgave in that way that's just straight out of the series itself. It's hard to explain, but with the best AkuTaka writers, there's sort of a... faint knot in my stomach as I read, because it's never soft or pretty, and this was a fantastic example of that. Plus, the ending was just... *long sigh* everything it needed to be. Loved this. (AkuTaka.)

- Prince of Tennis - Enigma - untitled - After Work - Falling Asleep - Just a Hug... - by Mina - And yet again I have a reason to be thankful to 30_kisses for introducing me to an author I may have never found before, but who writes absolutely happyfit-inducing stories. I was really pleasantly surprised to find another author who writes AkuTaka with all the harsh edges that the characters can never get away from (but, really, are part of what make them so fascinating to me) yet there's still that undefinable quality of something just this side of Akutsu being an absolute bastard to Taka that attracts me to them. The author doesn't pull her punches with these characters, she doesn't make Akutsu suddenly nice by any means, but she makes a great analogy early on about how alike these two characters are, while being complete opposites. She also nails their dynamic brilliantly well, the writing is lovely, and I wish I could squee more coherently over this set of little stories because they really deserve it. Some of the best AkuTaka to come along in awhile, the kind I can actually believe, the kind I desperately want more of because I adore the little universe the author is building here, and they're just good stories. My AkuTaka fangirl is happy and not so desperately hungry again. ♥ (AkuTaka, NC-17 in one story, but the rest are PG-ish with some language warnings.)

- Prince of Tennis - Cigarette by Katharos - There is never enough AkuTaka (whether friendship or otherwise) fic in the world, so to see more of it by an author I really quite like... well, yes, I pretty much dove onto this story and I don't think it disappointed. It was a lovely little short story, just one of those meetings between them where Akutsu is still sort of a bastard, but Taka never really minds and Akutsu doesn't mind that he doesn't mind and somehow it just... works. I could picture the entire thing in my head, the writing and style was that clear. *shimmers* (Not really AkuTaka, but I'll count it anyway.)

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