My day started out with a cat throwing up in my bedroom at 4 AM (three hours after I went to bed), after which I fled the house to catch a 7:30 AM bus to New York, which promptly broke down half an hour out. It's fine though! We've got another bus and also I can't really be annoyed at anything because a.) once I finally get to New York I have a great day of Jewish Christmas planned with cousins and friends and Chinese food and possibly screwball comedy and b.) I AM STILL BUSY SCREAMING INTERNALLY ABOUT HOW MUCH I WON YULETIDE THIS YEAR, like?? I've had some amazing Yuletide years in the past, but this is ABOVE AND BEYOND.
I got all the stuff I was convinced I was least likely to get --A Moment of Utter Stillness
, happy-ending postcanon fic for Frances Hardinge's The Lie Tree
, one of my favorite books to come out this year? Featuring Further Adventures of Paul and Faith, two of my best beloved terrible children in a long roster of terrible fictional children I have loved: Faith imagined herself sinking deeper into the mud, entombed there forever, the eons slowly turning her to stone – a fossil waiting to be discovered by another little girl from the future, a girl with an alien face, but inquisitive, multi-faceted eyes, a fly-person looking back across the ages, to a distant time when mammals ruled the earth.
Ah, scientific creepiness and a death-wish. CLASSIC FAITH. <3 ...uh, but really most of the fic is a super hopeful happy ending for them and I'm so delighted that someone wrote it for me!
So this was wonderful and unlikely enough, BUT ALSO I got: win me, win me, an ye will
, an amazing?? PITCH-PERFECT???? crossover!!!! between Miss Marjoribanks
, the greatest obscure Victorian social engineering competence porn novel possibly ever written, and Zen Cho's Sorcerer to the Crown
, one of my OTHER favorite books to come out this year, in which Lucilla Marjoribanks is called upon to defeat a lady of the fairies in single! combat! TO THE SOCIAL DEATH! (and possibly also the death death) (but a lady prefers not to discuss such things explicitly)"I am afraid that we find ourselves in a very awkward position," Lucilla told the Lady sadly. She had a horror of social awkwardness above all things. "Asking you to withdraw your influence from Marchbank was
my intention also."
Every single one of you should read this; no knowledge of either canon is really necesary for enjoyment beyond a general awareness of the tropes of Victorian literature and/or fairy stories, and I spent basically every other sentence screaming in awe, hilarity, or both. Finally, Lucilla Marjoribanks has a sphere worthy of her prodigious talents! (I do have a suspicion about who might have written this; we'll see if I am right. Either way, whoever it is, they are clearly as much of a genius as Lucilla Marjoribanks herself.)
BUT ALSO ALSO -- as if this were not already a bounty far beyond what I could have dreamed! -- I got:the year we built the windows
, a NOVELLA-LENGTH 7 SEEDS
LESBIAN ARCHITECT/ENGINEER CHARACTER STUDY AND ROMANCE?!?! This is at least the fifth time I've asked for 7 Seeds
fic in an exchange without ever receiving it, and this has now become a lesson to me in the value of persistence; now and only now do I understand that the universe has just been saving up until now, when it has presented me with EVERYTHING I COULD HAVE POSSIBLY WANTED. The characterization and relationships are beautiful -- not just Ran/Nijiko, but Ran and Hana, Ran and Botan, Ran and Team Autumn, Nijiko and Team Summer A, Ran and the echoes of the past civilization, all of them get their due -- and it has everything I love in canon, all the themes of failure, and second chances, and slow, indefinable growth.
...AND ALSO IT IS HILARIOUS AND FULL OF POST-APOCALYPTIC ENGINEERING AND EXTREMELY GAY. *__* Nijiko frowned through her ridiculous prison-bar bangs. "How did you know it randomizes water pressure?"
"I heard Ayu-san say so," Ran lied, because it was less soul-crushing than conceding she might have asked Akane to note the volume of water in a bath bucket, before-and-after, and dragged out some undergrad calculus to ascertain whether the Summer A girls had actually done womankind the service of getting massaging showerhead action out of a glorified flute.
Picking a part to quote was incredibly difficult because did I mention there's fourteen thousand brilliant words of it?? God. THIS YULETIDE. I almost don't want to go read the rest of the archive! I need more time to just wallow in the luxury of my gifts like a dragon with a fic hoard.