- X/Tokyo Babylon - Illusory Tandem by Tanuki-dono - I've been slowly reading this story over the past four days or so, surprised at how long the story has gotten since the first chapter went up over at CLAMPesque and, yet, still antsy for the rest of it, because the story is really shaping up to be something. The basic premise is of Subaru somehow being tossed back in time, back to the Tokyo Babylon era, only with this story, he's still in his X body, still with all his bitterness and depression and anger after X16/17/18 around in full force. Actually, if I were going to have one complaint about the story, it's that Subaru feels a little too detached, given that Seishirou and Hokuto are both running around still alive and he could change things. There have been moments when you see glimmers of his reaction, but I'd like to have seen more; this is Subaru, after all.
However, that's a small complaint in the face of a story that's actually developing a plot--even though not much has really been revealed yet (the mysterious and powerful force that seems to be lurking in the background has hardly anything known about it, it may not even truly be there, X!Subaru seems to be planning something, slowly setting up a life to allow him some breathing room to get it under way, TB!Subaru seems to be getting caught up in something...), things are happening. One of the greatest joys about the story is reading the Tokyo Babylon-era antics of Seishirou, Subaru, and Hokuto, the author does a fantastic job of capturing the sense of fun (yet still tempered with darker elements because of the story) they have together, combined with the things of Seishirou's true nature and the darker future set out for them.
I find myself very curious as to where the story is going, what's going to happen next, how things are going to eventually end up, just what is going to happen. The author does a good job with writing a smooth, readable narrative, of capturing a storyline that feels like a cross between Tokyo Babylon and X, of making me genuinely looking forward to the next part, despite the ratcheting sense of tension and darkness that may or may not come to a head. Grr. Want more NOW. >F (Some Seishirou/Subaru.)
- Tokyo Babylon - Tailored Fit by Xyn - *fweee!* Cute Tokyo Babylon fic! I don't know that I could live off Tokyo Babylon cuteness, but little treats like these just make the whole meal of the TBX fandom experience all the better--plus, Hokuto's so cute when she's making new clothes for Subaru and Seishirou is being... well, Seishirou. >D Nicely captured the TB dynamic and fun. (A little Seishirou/Subaru, but more about the TB style as a whole.)
- X - Bring The World Crashing Down by Xyn - I'll mention upfront that this story wasn't finished and hasn't been worked on in about eight months, so it may be a long wait for more of this one, but I still recommend it because the story doesn't leave off in a terrible place and there's a lot of really fun stuff to be had in the story. The author's writing is smooth, clean, and clear, making it easy to slide into the story without being jarred by anything and... okay, I'm not fond of the whole idea that's presented in this story (the explanation for why Seishirou acts the way he does here), it's a weird bit of fanon that doesn't mesh with the canon (I'm being deliberately vague because I don't want to spoil it)... but, at the same time, I also will say that my feathers weren't ruffled the way I would have thought they would be. I kinda liked what the author did here, with the characters, I thought her writing was strong enough to make it entertaining and believable in this instance.
The basic plot of the story is that, as Rainbow Bridge is crashing down around him, Subaru is falling with Seishirou and in the choas somehow manages to wake up in a different world, where Seishirou is still very much alive and things are just a little bit different. Subaru has to struggle to figure out what's going on and the author does a solid job of revealing little pieces at a time, of showing Subaru's confusion, frustration, and emotional upsets. But the real highlight of the story, what makes it worth reading for is the SxS interaction. Subaru being 'babysat' by Seishirou's shikigami was massively entertaining and a really good use of the onmyoujitsu in their lives, I thought. The story isn't all about the onmyoujitsu, it's not even a main element, but little touches--Seishirou tracking him through it when he's trying to run away or when Subaru confronts a ghost that's haunting a house--help flesh out the story even more.
I just... I had fun with this story (well, in the sense that I was entertained, even when I wanted to hug Subaru or drop-kick him into Seishirou's arms), I'm genuinely curious about the mystery, just how Subaru got there, and wondering how it's all going to end. That's always the mark of a good story to me. ^_~ (Seishirou/Subaru, but could technically still be gen.)
- X - Of Mothers And Sex Advice by Xyn - *sporfles* Oh, I didn't know if this would work, given that the summary was basically the one where Subaru meets Seishirou's mother and silliness abounds, but it's another one of those SxS stories that has the best sort of crack. Setsuka's role was wonderfully done here, genuinely funny and none of the weirdness or awkwardness that I might have expected from trying to wring humor from this sort of idea, instead honestly working for me. Plus! A touch of lime and a great ending. I couldn't ask for more.
Since so few people write SxS lemons. *grumps* (Seishirou/Subaru.)
- X - Inbox (4 new messages) by Fahye - Hee! Very cute little story about four messages sitting in Seishirou's inbox, each from four different people, all of which amused me greatly. Especially the hinting at just whatever it was that Seishirou had done to embarass Subaru. A fun little ficlet that had a genuinely good sense of humor. (Some light Seishirou/Subaru maybe.)
- X - The Shortest Day by Fahye - This story isn't exactly what I expected, the characterization is a bit off from what I normally read (Seishirou seemed a little too... human, I guess?), but it was hardly wildly off and I found some of the moments to be particularily nice to read. The writing itself is lovely, the smoothness of the prose was a real treat and some of the imagery of the winter season is downright beautiful. The story also captured an atmosphere to it, there was a certain sort of tension running along under the entire fic that really fit with these characters. I also liked that the story did a neat little trick--you never see the characters' names mentioned, yet the story suffers not at all for this, one of the few second person narratives that wasn't distracting or jarring for me at all. Despite my faint reservations, I really enjoyed this story a lot. <3 (Seishirou/Subaru.)
- X - Liquidating The Assets by Fahye - You know. I took one look at the author's notes of this story and almost turned the car right around and went home, but then I figured... oh, what the hell, I'll read until I'm creeped out, then run away like the demons of hell themselves were on my tail. I mean, Crossdressing Prostitute Seishirou fic couldn't possibly be something I'd read all the way through. And yet... the Officially Creeped Out point never came. Instead there were lots of I Shouldn't Laugh At This, I Shouldn't Laugh At This, I Shouldn't Laugh At Thi--BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA! *Cracks Up* points, something about the smoothness of the writing, that Seishirou was just doing one giant mind-fuck and enjoying the hell out of it, the interaction with Subaru that was fucking perfect, a great sense of comedic timing (Yuuto's reactions constantly made me laugh, too), and that when I finished the entire fic, I just had to put my head down and laugh. I feel like I shouldn't have, but, dammit, this is the ONLY fic where this could EVER work. And thus I recommend it, despite Crossdressing Prostitute Seishirou. (Some Seishirou/Subaru.)
- X - Progression by EAG - Despite the shortness of this story, it certainly packs a hell of a punch. The picture it paints... in some ways, I dread that it could happen, in others I almost wish it would happen, because it'd be brilliantly horrible. EAG really does the idea well in this ficlet, the faint echoes of Seishirou, the way Subaru is different, the way everything hurts that CLAMP-y sort of way. Not a happy fic, but one that still got to me. (Some light Seishirou/Subaru, but it's not entirely about that.)
- X - A Shopping Excursion by Xyn - GOOD. I NEEDED SOME X FLUFF. But more than fluff, it was the warm kind of fluff that made me smile and feel all fuzzy on the inside. Yet, it also made me giggle over the humor in all the right places (Seishirou insulting Subaru's sense of fashion was great) and the ending made me coo. One of those stories that I need every so often, amidst all the angst and death and blood and pain and trauma, because IT MAKES ME FEEL BETTER, DAMMIT. *clutches the WAFF and runs off* (Seishirou/Subaru.)
- X - Sepia Architecture by Xyn - But the past seemed to haunt him constantly, memories touching and warping every aspect of life. His history couldn’t touch him here in the attic however; it was already filled with someone else's memories, encased away in ragged boxes. Oh. This was beautiful. One of those stories that took my breath away by the end because it was just so... everything I wanted. Brilliant characterization, moments that had Seishirou and Subaru something like being at peace, but believable and genuinely clever, moments that ripped my heart out because they couldn't stay there forever, because these characters have such tragic lives, and an ending that left me knocked on my ass at the sheer perfection of Seishirou's characterization and the climax that the story built to. It's not easy to find stories that have quiet moments of intimacy with Seishirou and Subaru, much less ones that slide beautifully in between the pages of canon, that make me feel something like warm, that capture the magic of this pairing, yet still stay so perfectly in tune with what CLAMP wanted for them. Each scene in this story was a lovely illustration of the relationship between these characters, each time Seishirou would visit Subaru in the attic, there was a new memory, there was a new piece of them left behind, each having its own meaning or point, each building towards the climax of the story... and when that hit, I was left star-struck by how much I was in love with this story. *fangirls some more* (Seishirou/Subaru.)
- X - Viva Las Vegas by insaneidiot - "No we aren't," Subaru said firmly. "We are not getting married, because that would be ridiculous. Especially since I don't recall being asked." / "Well, if you're going to be snippy about it... Would you marry me?" / "No!" / "Too bad, we're still getting married." I'll admit that I was a little wary of the way this one started out, it was a little too fandom for me, too much with the weirdness of the donkey and being in the middle of a desert somewhere... but once the story got past that, it went into the kind of crack I'm more familiar with--plus, Seishirou and Subaru getting married in Las Vegas! How can you not want to read about that? Poor Subaru's life is one embarassment after another, but the kind that are good for him, honest! Anyway, more fun fic that had me laughing all the way through to the end. Plus marraige and honeymoon suites! <3<3<3 (Seishirou/Subaru.)
- X - themes 4 and 5 by Kelsey - Okay, not so much Fuuma/Subaru this time around, but when Kelsey writes, I always have to read eventually because she just... she does such justice to these characters. The first one of these two ficlets is just... the way Fuuma sees Subaru's Wish, the way it clouds and changes sometimes, it felt so strongly of the series and hurt in a vague sort of way because you know the inevitable is the inevitable without having to be told that. The second says so much about Seishirou's relationship with Subaru, the way Fuuma intrudes in his spaces and how that affects him, connecting to the previous one in a lovely way. Just... this is the X I love. (Some Seishirou/Subaru.)
- X - Overtime by Kelsey and Tammaiya - Kelsey and Tammaiya teaming up for SxS pr0n? Oh, well, I immediately skipped off to read that, for sure. And they do a lovely job with it, another one of those stories that just makes me warm on the inside because it finds a place for Seishirou and Subaru to be something at peace, but in such a way that it doesn't take away from the characters. Seishirou is still predatory, teasing, frustrating, all of those dangerous things he usually is. Subaru is still serious, naive in some ways, all too knowing in others, still so quiet, reserved, and adorably embarassed by franker subjects. I liked that this story was a long, slow build up to the--ha, ha 9__9--climax of the fic, that it's not quick foreplay that skips straight to the sex, it's much more CLAMP-y in the sense that it's more about the slow seduction of the characters, that it's about the little sensual things that build towards the finale. Lovely fic and there needs, needs to be more SxS pr0n in the world. Needs. (Seishirou/Subaru, R-rated content.)
- X/Tsubasa RESERVoir Chronicles - Travel Companions (chapter 02) by Elihice - For a moment- minutes- he is free. Nothing binds him to this world or any other, until the door opens again and he doesn't need the witch to tell him that there are ties that cannot be severed. It's been awhile since I've been so enamored with a crossover idea, to the point that I desperately crave more, but what Elihice has done with this story... it's both a really clever idea, but I'm also adoring the execution. The story very much has the CLAMP/TRC/X feel to it, which I wouldn't have quite thought possible, since TRC is so much lighter than X!SxS is, but this works. This chapter is Subaru's side of the whole situation, the reactions he has to the journey he's undertaking here and all the right notes are hit--I feel so much for him, wish things could have been different for him, and it's just... it's a crossover that makes so much sense, part of me can't help but wish this is where X/TRC would go. (Maybe a little Seishirou/Subaru, but.)
- X - untitled by Elihice - ...............>DDDDDD Right from the beginning, this started out as a wonderful humor piece, genuinely sparkly and witty writing, but EVEN BETTER for the Fuuma POV that doesn't make me want to claw at things and screech in rage (it's all the little comments that come from Fuuma's narrative, his take on the dynamics of the SxS relationship), EVEN BETTER for the way he spins a battle scene to something much, much more fun. Plus, it's fun to see Seishirou unsettled and HOORAY FOR THE X CAST FINALLY NOT BEING RETARDS! \o/ This is totally how it should have gone. >DDDDDDD (Some Seishirou/Subaru.)
- X - One Step Ahead by Sophia P - There was one line that particularily stood out to me with this fic: In theory, Subaru was tracking him down, hell-bent on vengeance for the death of his precious sister. In truth, things were quite different. I think a large part of what won me over with this story is the way it tackled the time gap between Tokyo Babylon and X, the way nine years passed and Subaru had never found Seishirou. True, it's entirely possible that Seishirou is just that good (he probably is), but this presents a slightly messier, more complicated, more damaged version that fits with the way Subaru falls after Tokyo Babylon. But the other appealing aspect of the fic is the way the author writes Seishirou, the way his thoughts arrange themselves and his motivations for action/inaction... it all came together in an elegant little story that I really liked. (Seishirou/Subaru.)
- Tsubasa RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE/X - Travel Companions Omake by Elihice - It took two paragraphs into this fic and I totally burst out into laughter because, ahahahahahaha, so funny. And I love, love that no matter where he goes, some things are just never going to change for poor Subaru. But, really, this was all kinds of genius and I love Elihice for thinking of sending them to this particular world and doing a fabulous job with it and, god, this is why HOLiC and TRC own me. (Some hints of Seishirou/Subaru, but not entirely the point, either.)
- X/xxxHOLiC - A Debt Repaid by Pengie - ....so, I love Pengie, right? But you knew that already. Still, I love her so. Because, oh, my god, nobody does CLAMP/X humorfic like she does, there are so few people who can send me into giggle fits when she gets to her punchlines or concepts (*chants* I will not give this one away, I will not give this one away, I will not give this one away--) so that I'm snickering so hard I'm getting funny looks again. Especially the end. Especially the end. And the middle part. Because nothing is as much fun as watching Seishirou be a perv, Kamui being put upon, Fuuma being crazy, and Subaru not protesting Seishirou's advances as much as he could. And froggies! But mostly the end. Because I would totally, totally BUY THAT BOOK. (Watanuki's bit especially amused me.) ....wow, this rec sucks. You go read now instead. (Mentions of Seishirou/Subaru, Fuuma/Kamui.)
- X/Tokyo Babylon - Interlude by Elihice - After reading a story like this of Elihice's, it seems like every time I let out this long, breathy sigh afterwards and I realize what a geek I am to do so over fanfic, but she has this incredible way with mood and details and insights into the characters. Something as simple as Subaru starting to smoke makes my chest tight and I hurt all over again when she writes about it. And, god, the atmosphere of this story is beautiful, it's all so... there's this beautiful sense of immense hurt and sorrow underneath the calm, almost numb tone, like Subaru is always just one more trauma away from breaking and she never has to say this, it's just there in the writing. It's just... one beautiful moment after another, each more heartbreaking than the last. ♥ ....or should I say ;__; ? (Seishirou/Subaru implied.)
- X - untitled by Tammaiya - So, one of the requests for her latest fic meme was a scene between Subaru and Kotori and I actually sort of perked up at the idea because it's not something you see done very often and I have a strong love of taking two random characters and putting them into a gen scene. Especially when it's done in a way that feels so very natural to the world and the characters, when it makes sense, and the length/pacing of it is just perfect. There's a bittersweet quality to the interaction as well, given that it's Subaru and Kotori and I doubt it could be anything else, and this lovely subtle way of working in the people they care about and hitting me like a two by four to the fangirl chest because it doesn't overplay its hand. It's short but powerful. (Some pairings implied, but they're not entirely the point.)
- X/Tokyo Babylon - According To Plan by Tammaiya - It feels like ages since I've read SxS fic and it's fics like these that make me wonder why I stay away so long. This fic was... interesting and creative and different from so much of the other X fic out there, while still having that atmosphere that I associate with the series/pairing. What I mean by that is that I could have seen something very much like this having happened in the Xverse if things had gone a little differently, if CLAMP had planned for something else. There's a weight to the characterizations and actions for both of them, both Seishirou and Subaru are characters that can affect me in the right writer's hands and Tammaiya gets at whatever it is that makes my fangirl heart ache for them. And this was... clever and interesting and nicely fleshed out and so screwed up and romantic in that way that twisted SxS has (if you're a fan of the pairing) and fascinating and I couldn't stop reading once I'd started. The summary reads: Seishirou takes his freakish possessiveness to all new... no, actually, probably this is only on par with his usual levels of freakish possessiveness. And, yes, that's what this fic is about. Even if I'm intrigued by the concept, the clever idea, at its heart, it's about Seishirou's possessiveness and Subaru's underlying desires to be possessed and how bittersweet these two are even when they find some sort of balance between the two. This was good. (Seishirou/Subaru.)
- X/Tokyo Babylon - Morning by Leareth - [ part 01 - part 02 - part 03 ] - [Note: These fics are locked, but the author friends back anyone who friends the journal, so I'm making an exception.] In a strange twist of coincidence, I was depressing myself with X16 yesterday and then I saw that Learth had posted TBX fic this morning and I promptly got sucked in. Part of it is that she's such a brilliant writer for this series, especially with Seishirou's character. He's all lethal grace and elegance even as he's simply smirking or coming down for breakfast with the Seals--which is something that should be complete crack, but, as;lfjkaslkdfj, holy shit, it doesn't just work here, it's one of the most gorgeous fics I've read. I had no idea how badly, how desperately I needed this fic written by her until it was underway. Each chapter focuses on the point of view of a new Seal and that works brilliantly for this story, the way you see each of their reactions to the Sakurazukamori in their house, each of their reactions brilliant and just... gah. I can't write any more of this rec without dissolving into fangirl squee. It's a fantastic read for the characters and the situation that isn't quite crack, but it's humorous and is so, so, so much better for the way Leareth makes me believe. And Seishirou... oh, if I weren't head over heels for the character already, this would put me completely over the top. No one writes Seishirou like her. (Implied Seishirou/Subaru, it's not entirely the point.)
- X/Tokyo Babylon/xxxHOLiC - "A Very Sakurazuka Christmas" and "It's A Wonderful Life": More Selected Selections from Yuuko Ichihara's Christmas Anthology! by Pengie - You know what can always make Christmas even better than it already was? Christmas fic from Pengie with selected scenes from Yuuko's Christmas book! There's no part of this fic that's not hack-up-your-lungs funny, not from the very beginning with Yuuko settling in to tell her story and Watanuki headdesking violently to the actual story itself, which is a great homage to "It's a Wonderful Life" and all the way on down to the perfect, perfect ending. Pengie does a brilliant job of weaving in a million different elements--the humor, the comedic timing, the crappiness of the X characters' lives, the movie homages, the craziness of CLAMP's characters--and yet never overbalancing any of them. Except maybe the humor. Is it possible to be too funny? Because, seriously, I'm sick here and this kind of hurt. ♥ (Fuuma/Kamui, Seishirou/Subaru, Sorata/Arashi, implications of other regular pairings.)
- X - Life's Little Mysteries by Tammaiya - Sometimes I think that maybe I've had my fill of SxS fic. (Shut up, we all know it's not really true.) And then a fic like this will come along, with the summary: Subaru's things are going mysteriously missing. And it's keyboard-mashingly awesome, hilarious, and brilliant. It's totally cracked out, but in the good way, the kind that keeps their characterization even while smoking whatever amazingly good stuff it is that the author keeps hidden away somewhere. It's the little details, the little moments of perfect timing as Subaru realizes what's going on or Kamui flails at him because OH MY GOD YOUR BOYFRIEND IS SUCH A FREAK and then there's an awesome ending, too. This rec is totally vague, but the fic is fabulous, one of the best pieces to come out of the X fandom lately. ♥ (Seishirou/Subaru.)
- X/Tokyo Babylon/xxxHOLiC - And Sometimes, You're The Bug by Tammaiya - Yuuko. Plus. Seishirou. In. The. Same. Room. Is there any way this author could fail to make this awesome? I THINK NOT. I have desperately wanted an X/HOLiC crossover and this one... both sates that desire and flames it all the further because it's this neat little thing, Seishirou showing up and it fits together so well here and the little details are fantastic. Watanuki's POV in the story is fabulous as well, from the snippets he overhears to the way he spazzes and flails to the brilliant ending of the piece which is something that could have come straight out of the manga itself. That's the lovely thing about this piece, it captures the tone of both series and characters so well, it has so many little details that make it fit into CLAMP's worlds that's just... fabulous. I flail with love. (Implications of Seishirou/Subaru and maaaaybe Doumeki/Watanuki if you squint.)
- X/Tokyo Babylon - House Of Horrors by Tammaiya - I know it's Christmastime rather than Halloween, but spooky, haunted house stories are never unwelcome. Especially when they involve Subaru and Seishirou (who is kind of a bastard in the way that makes fangirls love him all the more ♥) and empty houses and the two of them being kind of retarded. ♥ I delight in Subaru's being... not all that quick on the uptake, in Seishirou being all smooth charm and graceful movements. I positively glee in Subaru being so... well, Subaru the entire time. I love that this is a story laced with crack, yet the kind you could almost see CLAMP thinking would be an AWESOME thing to include in canon because Subaru and Seishirou (and Hokuto!) totally used to do stuff exactly like this. Well, not exactly. But it's happy X!SxS fic that's totally perfect and brilliant and non-doomtastic. This should always be cherished. (Seishirou/Subaru.)
- X - All That Glitters by Tammaiya - [ part 01 - part 02 - part 03 ] - You know, pretty much no one but Tammaiya could get me to read boyband!X fic. Because I know she's going to spin something creative and fun out of it, that she'll include the entire cast (no wonder it got so long ♥) and put neat little spins on the characters' backgrounds into the fic and then give me absolutely delightful SxS fanservice. That is ALL I ASK out of AUs. ♥ And, hell, she even puts in delightful Fuuma/Kamui interaction--how often does that happen? There's so very little FxK out there, much less the kind that's totally on crack yet still staying true enough to the spirit of the characters that I actually enjoy it; it's not just crack for crack's sake, instead it's the fun kind. I keyboard mash in love with how much she managed to work into this fic, how many characters/relationships she managed to cover, and impatiently wait for more. ♥ (Seishirou/Subaru, Fuuma/Kamui, Sorata/Arashi, Yuuto/Karen, possibly more.)
- X/Tokyo Babylon/Buffy the Vampire Slayer - Agony Aunt by Sophia P - [Note: This is a sequel to the fic Not Your Average Kelly Girl.] Oh. Oh. Anya in a meeting with Subaru and adfslkjadsflkjasdlfj "Of course, I generally only offer my special services to wronged women, but hell, you're feminine enough that it sort of counts, right?" Anya's take on the CLAMPverse happenings is both hilarious and a great way to highlight just how ridiculously angsty some of it is and her characterization as a vengeance demon is so beautiful that I can only flail my arms geekishly in appreciation. There are just too many lines and little moments that I'd love to quote in this one, I'd wind up quoting back the whole thing. This should absolutely, absolutely not be missed. (Some Seishirou/Subaru, but it's not the point at all.)
- X/Tokyo Babylon - Tricks the Memory Plays by Truth - I've been journalhopping all morning and wandering through the recent springkink posts and I haven't read Xfic in a very long time, but... I've always liked Truth's fic and I figured I'd at least give it a few paragraphs. This is a very dark take on Subaru and his relationship with Seishirou, how much pain and hurt and despair and anger and desperation there is wrapped up in every encounter they have. It's a series of meetings/scenes between them, dangerous and showing just how cracked and damaged Subaru has become ever since that day so long ago, never letting up on that dark, hurtful tone. While I usually prefer something slightly different in tone, I certainly had to be entranced by the way the obsession in this pairing was written here. (Seishirou/Subaru, dubcon, an R rating.)