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Thursday, July 14th, 2016 11:15 pm
Welcome to the second installment of my tenth anniversary reccing posts! Follow the tag if you've missed the previous entries.

Once again, I had to struggle to keep this down to a manageable number. I had already decided to refrain from including the same author twice - or trying, anyway - but that didn't help as much as I thought it would, although it did mean not choosing several favorites!

I find it interesting to see my own learning curve, so to speak. When I first started reccing, the "why this must be read" section was paragraphs long, often summarizing the story. Over time, I shortened both the excerpts I included as well as my explanation of why I thought the fic was worth reading. A reccer should tempt and tantalize, not give a full review!

Since I first started writing SG-1 fic myself in early 2007, I have also decided to shamelessly rec one or two stories per calendar year of my own writing. :)

Remember, I welcome more gen recs below, whether it's another author's story or your own.

A Million Years Into the Sky, by Niamaea. There is character death here. There is peripheral shipping here. And I don't care, because this is beautiful and angsty and hopeful and aching all at once.

From the original rec:

This amazing fic offers a heartbreakingly beautiful look at that happy ending, as Niamaea provides us with a universe that cares for her children and the long, gentle journey that the members of SG-1 take, one by one, to get there.

The first part of the story is told from Sam’s POV; the second, from Teal’c’s, in one of the most stunning characterizations I’ve ever seen for our beloved Jaffa. The entire fic is chock-full of fantastic insights: Sam’s epiphany into how Jack and Daniel’s personalities complete one another. The team’s careful manipulations to ensure that Daniel is “remembered to history for his life,” and not how he died, because that’s what he would have wanted most. Teal’c watching, from the perspective of his longer lifespan, as one by one, his teammates slip away – complete, and in peace.

Both classic team and S9-10 team are part of this lovely, lovely fic. It's a joy to see a sort of ultimate happy ending here.

“Shal’kek nem’ron,” he says.

Daniel shakes his head and corrects him. “You lived free, Teal’c.”

Scotoma, by Rydra Wong (PG). I've always said there's much, much more to Sha're than being the love of Daniel's life and his quest object. This powerful AU helps prove that.

From the original rec:

In this powerful AU, Amaunet is captured by SG-1 and Sha’re is freed. But the triumph can only be bittersweet… because this takes place in Season Six, and Daniel isn’t there.

This is the amazing story of Sha’re’s journey to emotional recovery and equilibrium. Follow in her steps as she mourns her husband’s absence, moving among his things to try and taste his presence; develops a beautifully real friendship with Sam, whose experience with Jolinar allows for a special empathy; handles Mackenzie and other irrating facets of life in the SGC with aplomb; and finds her own place, her own strength, and her own heart.

The Sam and Sha're friendship is stunning. The characterization of Sha're and her cultural background is perfect. And the whole story is just plain wonderful.

In the lab, she slides the bracelet over her hand, then starts fitting her fingers into the metal caps, one by one.

It’s only when Sam says, "Don’t –you don’t have to do this, I shouldn’t have asked you -" that she realizes her hands are trembling.

She will not be this, she thinks, an empty, broken vessel, discarded like a cracked jug. Dull as clay.

If we understand their technology, Sam had said, we can use it against them.

She raises her hand, flexing her fingers, trying to remember how it felt when Amaunet used the ribbon device – lines of force running through her body, anger gathering in her palm, a hot burning point, like a fire being kindled.

Suddenly the air ripples with force, shimmering like the heat rising over the desert. The blast hits the edge of a table, sending it screeching across the floor and into a bench. Glassware topples and shatters on the floor.

She looks round in alarm. But Sam is grinning, a little wildly. "Wow."

Teal'c's Five Favorite Board Games, by Paian. Only Paian could take a prompt that borders on cracky and make it into the most stunning character study of Teal'c and his growth over the years, together with his closeness with the team.

from the original rec:

This amazing Five Things is my personal definitive Teal’c fic. Despite the seemingly lightness of its premise – Teal’c’s favorite board games on Earth – it is filled with rich characterization and a deeply moving insight into Teal’c and his history, both before and after he joins the SGC.

This story is poignant and humorous and thought-provoking in turns. We get some lovely glimpses of various team members, and they all ring clear and true. But most of all, we get Teal’c – in his entirety, and wonderfully, beautifully real.

Too few people write Teal'c. Ever fewer get him right.

"Hey, look, it's us!" Captain Carter said, lining up the players' gamepieces side by side. They were cartoon depictions of excited children, two boys and two girls, each printed on cardboard that was then coated in plastic and mounted to stand on a small base. "That one's me with a non-regulation haircut, and that one's Teal'c, and that one'll be you if we draw glasses on it, Daniel ... "

Daniel Jackson picked up the remaining piece, which depicted a little girl with a tuft of hair sticking straight up from the middle of her head. "Making this, um ... "

"Oh yeah," Captain Carter said with a grin.

Daniel Jackson gave only a hint of smile as he said, "So when do we get Jack in here to play?"

As it turned out, Teal'c was the only adult of his own acquaintance who did not find the game a stupefying bore. He plays it to this day, when he is at his weariest, when neither meditation nor the less accustomed relaxation of sleep can lift the fatigue from his mind and spirit, softly mesmerized by the twirling spinner, the unknown fate awaiting him in the number of squares he will be directed to move, the exhilaration of being lifted up a bright green ladder, the equal exhilaration of a slide down a bright red chute. The game requires no choices, no strategy, merely persistence, slow march after slow march around the board. Twirl the spinner enough times and you always reach the top -- always land, eventually, on the last square, with its blue-ribbon prize. He plays for all four players, and there is no failure, only the journey, with its fallings and risings; all four of them, always, reach the end intact.

In Threes, by Nanda (PG). Team love and competence with focus on Sam, whee!

from the original rec:

This lovely drama gives us teamy goodness galore, as SG-1 goes into survival mode in a crisis. Told wholly from Sam’s rather muddled POV – she suffers a concussion in the opening paragraph of the story – it’s wonderful to see the story unfold, as the team works seamlessly together to make it through.

This is the team as I enjoy it most: there for one another, appreciating each other's skills, and just knowing each other so well!

Her eyelids feel like lead. But above her are three smiling faces, and in Daniel’s bandaged hands, a chocolate-chip cookie with a tin of sterno on top.

“It’s midnight back home,” Daniel explains.

“You guys are nuts,” she says. It’s hard to speak. The smiles turn into expressions of alarm, and a hand waves in front of her face. It makes her dizzy.

“How many fingers, Carter?”

“Two,” she says. She’s pretty sure it’s two. They all look like she gave the right answer.

“How many birthdays?” Daniel blows out the sterno and hands her the cookie. It has white cotton lint on it.

“I refuse to answer that,” she says.

“What’s the highest-scoring college hockey game of all time?”

“How am I supposed to know that, sir?”

“Worth a try,” he grins.

“What is your address, Major Carter?”

She rattles it off. She just wants to close her eyes. “Can I go back to sleep now?”

They make her eat her cookie first.

When Your Job Description (You Announce Chevrons!) Is a Total Lie, by Madelyn. This deadpan hilarious story stars Walter the Chevron Guy and guest-stars an utterly awesome Teal'c, and it is sheer GLEE.

from the original rec:

General O’Neill sends a hapless Walter on a grand shopping expedition on behalf of Atlantis. He covers all the aisles, from children’s underwear to Playstations to condoms. There’s glee over bargains, an attempted hi-jacking, and an embarrassment factor that is largely mitigated by Teal’c’s unflappable, looming presence at his side.

This is technically part of an AU crossover, but you don't need any knowledge of the Retrograde universe to thoroughly enjoy this|

"General O'Neill? Did you want me to get all of them?" Walter asked quietly into his cell phone.

"What's that? I can't hear you," O'Neill said.

"I said, sir, did you want me to get all of the condoms?" Walter dropped his voice again. "Including the edible ones?"

"What? Your cell; it's breaking up."

"Edible condoms, did you want me to get edible condoms," Walter hissed.

"Uh. Yeah, get everything that you see," O'Neill said, after coughing for a moment.

The other guy browsing the aisle was very carefully not looking at Walter, who was busily scooping everything in sight into the cart.

Yeah, it was going to be a long day.

Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile, by Julie (PG-13). Early S8 Sam, comfortable with both herself and her new command. Lovely stuff.

from the original rec:

The team find themselves negotiating a lucrative treaty with the Elidari, a largely matriarchal society, and Sam feels compelled to go native, complete with body paint and very abbreviated costume. There’s good natured give-and-take between Daniel and Sam (with Teal’c adding his own two cents), and the members of SG-12 staring fixedly at either their own boots or Sam’s left ear, and a really lovely look inside Sam’s head. But most of all, there’s solid, unwavering, unquestioning support from Daniel and Teal’c for Sam as their leader.

Julie (aka [personal profile] splash_the_cat) does a stellar job of characterization and the relationships between Sam and Jack and Daniel and Teal'c.

Sam went to find Major Wells and ordered him to have his men stand down and mingle, biting back a laugh at his slightly stricken expression. "Anthropologists do it all the time, Major, and I'm not going to put anyone on report unless they deliberately act like an ass."

"Yes, ma'am." His shoulders sagged, and he flashed her the first smile she'd seen cross his face since Kemala's hunting party had first met them at the Gate.

And then Sam found Daniel and pulled him into the dance, letting him spin her until she was a little dizzy. She pulled Teal'c in too, pleasantly surprised when he whirled her about with un-Jaffa-life gusto. Later, as Sam and Daniel staggered out, leaving Teal'c still going strong, Daniel said, "You know, I used to have dreams like this."

Sam laughed, the sound raspy and broken as she tried to catch her breath. "You read National Geographic instead of Playboy when you were twelve, didn't you?"

Paper, Scissors, Yak, by Grav. I have a massive soft spot for post-movie, pre-series Abydos, especially when the culture is given its due. This utterly delightful series of snippets does exactly that.

from the original rec:

Set some time between the movie and COTG, this charming fic gives us beautiful snapshots into life on Abydos – the freedom from Ra’s tyranny that impoverished them for so long, the eagerness of the Abydon people to have Daniel teach them of their lost heritage, the humor of Daniel’s not-so-successful attempts to follow the culture’s traditions. It’s written with deftness and warmth and love, and it will make you fall in love with Abydos – and Daniel! – all over again.

The characterization of both the people and the planet are just plain stunning.

It is Abydonian tradition that the first month of a marriage is spent living in a tent. There are all sorts of reasons for this, but Daniel suspects the main one is that any couple that can survive each other in a tent for 36 days (the Abydonian calendar is one of the first thing Daniel plans to correct as soon as he has walls again), is destined for a happy wedded life. What he hadn’t taken into account was the sand.

He understands the principle of tents in the desert. Rock is scarce and labour intensive. Tents are cool and portable and relatively cheap to make and fix. Where he thinks tents fall short of the mark is that they do nothing to prevent sand from entering. Within two days, Daniel has sand in several places he’d rather not think about, and even the rugs on the floor seem to let it seep through.

For thirteen more days he endures. It’s not all bad. He’s on something like a honeymoon, after all, and here they take that literally, but at the same time, he wishes that he could just be clean again.

On the fifteenth day there is a sandstorm. The tent does not hold up well. Daniel goes looking for a house the next day.

Look to the Heavens and Number the Stars, parts one and two, and The Silent Language of the Star (a companion fic), by Minervacat. SO MUCH LOVE for this fic. Stellar outsider POV from the librarian of the SGC!

from the original rec:

Minervacat introduces us to a superbly-realized original character, Claire, who is recruited to the SGC by Jack at Daniel’s behest. Claire slowly takes over the staggeringly difficult task of cataloging the artifacts that accumulate over the years. With time, she befriends the characters we know and love – especially Janet, her main source of gossip, and Daniel, who never returns her books. Yet Minervacat cleverly evades the Mary-Sue trap for Claire; this original character remains quietly on the sidelines, interacting only enough to be a part of the story without interfering in the events as we know them, or knowing more than she should.

It is so much fun to know and recognize more than the character does, and to appreciate how deftly Claire becomes part of the SGC. One of my absolute favorites.

Jackson was there the day she shrieked and flung the H volume of the Library of Congress classifications across the room, barely missing something that looked like a flower pot and crushing the chalky rocks that SG-4 had brought back to her the week before.

While Claire was panting and clutching the edge of the desk, Jackson had picked his head up from the tablet he'd been studying, ambled across the room and fingered the pieces of broken chalk. "I guess you need a better system," he said.

Claire said, "There is nothing in library school that prepared me for this."

"There's nothing in the world that prepares you for this," Jackson said. "I'm fairly certain those rocks really were just chalk, if it helps."

"It doesn't," Claire said. "Look, I love the Library of Congress as much as the next librarian with a hard-on for classification, but I just have to say, I don't think they're what we need."

Jackson smiled, cat-like and self-contained, and said, "Now you're getting the hang of it."

"The hang of what?" Claire said.

"I'll send some people in to help you," Jackson said, as if it was the easiest thing in the world. No one at the SGC ever answered questions directly, and Claire was almost getting used to it. "One an afternoon, specialists in a variety of fields. You know how to build a taxonomy. Build one."

He disappeared again, taking the tablet with him, and Claire knew she wasn't going to get it back. She picked the H volume up off the floor, swept the remains of the chalk into a box, and sat back down at her desk.

Later, Claire used the H volume to prop up a desk that O'Neill broke in the aftermath of Kelowna.

Penmanship, by Salieri. Short, sweet, and just lovely: Hammond and Teal'c. Happy sigh.

from the original rec:

This is George Hammond, personified, and Teal’c, walking clear-eyed into his future, one careful step at a time.

Salieri gives us very early S1 Hammond, looking through SG-1’s reports of their latest mission. There is the light humor of how perfectly the reports mirror their authors: Sam’s is nearly mathematical in its precision, Jack’s is delightful succinctful, Daniel’s is desperately crammed with all the details he longs to tell the world, but never can. But then Teal’c comes into the office, and the reader is blown away by the power of what happens next: Teal’c’s triumph, Hammond’s understanding, and the satisfying snick of the team together as one.

We don't often stop to think about how far Teal'c must come. This is an absolute triumph.

Hammond found that Teal'c's was missing. He frowned. It wasn't like Lt. Pyrkychuk to be late with her transcription of Teal'c's report. He was just picking up the phone to send an aide for it when Teal'c appeared in the doorway.

"General Hammond." He remained where he was, hands folded behind his back.

"Come in, Teal'c." Hammond dropped the files back on the blotter and squared the edges. "I was just looking for your latest mission report."

"It is here," he answered, advancing and holding out a manila folder.

Inside there was only one completely filled piece of ruled paper. The letters were precisely written in block capitals, each one filling up the entire height of the line.


"I apologize for its tardiness, and for the penmanship. I hope to improve with practice."

Hammond met his eyes. There was something in there, behind the reserve. "You did this?"

"I did."

The Art of the Deal, by Littera Abactor (PG-13). This had me literally crying with laughter. Crammed with innuendo, yet utterly gen.

from the original rec:

This hilarious fic has a great Jack voice, a clueless Daniel, a horrified Sam, and an utterly unflappable Teal’c, who once again pwns SG-1. It also includes some delightfully alien aliens with a fascination for... cable television.

And great performers.

And SG-1 will perform for them, right...?

This fic has some of the best English-mangling aliens ever, and a fabulous twist at the end.

"Yes," Daniel confirmed. "We are very interested in your Stasis Generator, and Jack and I would gladly perform for you. Although I have to warn you, we won't be like on cable. We're probably not that good. You know, we're explorers and scientists and, uh, tacticians, not - performers."

Carter turned to Jack, her eyes wide, mouth open. Perform? she mouthed at him. Teal'c stayed impassive and focused on the negotiations, but when Jack studied him for a few moments, he caught the twitch of a facial muscle. Dammit, Teal'c was laughing at him.

"We so very unobjectational to this are," seventeen-eyes said sincerely and earnestly. "We have the greatness of understanding this. We would be honorific to visualize whatever performance is most comforting and customer for you, whatever you might typical engage when you are relaxation in your own privacy of home, yes?" The click-click-idjit was almost breathless with excitement.

Ciphers, by Destina. This is a stunning drama with incredible friendship, stubborn courage, and fantastic backstory.

from the original rec:

The entire team shines in this one. Sam is brilliant and dedicated and fierce in her pursuit of a solution; Teal’c lends his strength and his silence and his grace at a time that Daniel so desperately needs it. Jack is a bastion for Daniel, in leadership and friendship, as he inevitably finds the words - and the silences - that Daniel requires to keep going. But most of all, this is Daniel’s story: the drive to comprehend and adapt, the will and the courage to persist in the face of such damage. With an excellent guest star appearance from Martouf, and Janet in usual fine form, Ciphers is a wonderful team fic and Daniel fic that you’ll want to read again and again.

This is a fascinating, gripping Daniel-centric story that is wonderfully teamy at the same time, and is really beautifully written.

Huh," he said, and stared at the language he'd laid down on the page, suddenly alive with vibrant color. The words had become rainbows scrawled across the paper. It reminded him of a kid's art project, or one of those crazy pens that changed color as the writer used it, but it was oddly uniform. Each "e" was a sort of grayish blue; each "m", a vivid yellow like summer sunshine, each "s" a cool, misty green, and so on, for every other letter of the alphabet.

He waved the light across the page; the colors stayed constant. Slowly, he clicked the pen open, set the pen to paper, and wrote: "Something is wrong with me." Green, red, yellow, grayish blue...still the same colors for each letter.

A certain sort of fearful fascination took hold of him then, and he turned so he was facing the wall again. The Goa'uld markings still had their colors, each as distinct as the colors in the English alphabet. He touched them; they were cold beneath his extended fingers.

And then he remembered the violet of Jack's name, and the test slid from his lips without any more thought than a simple need to say it: "Jack." Purple stained his vision, but did not obscure it. He blinked hard, but the colors remained behind his closed eyelids for a moment or two more, until they finally faded. "Teal'c." A crisp, rust-colored orange appeared. Daniel chuckled. Not what he would have chosen. "Sam." Dark silver-grey. "Sha're." Deep blue-green, like a restful ocean.

Setting Up House series, by Redbyrd: You Can't Go Home Again, The Enemy of My Enemy, Whatever it Takes. Redbyrd is the queen of episode-related gen fic, filling in the missing blanks and exploring what must be happening in the background.

from the original rec:

Redbyrd tackles the drastic shift in the SGC as it goes from shut-down mode at the beginning of COTG to full operation in a handful of episodes - along with Daniel Jackson, newly ressurrected from his supposed death on Abydos.

The three stories, each complete in itself, cover events from the moment Daniel staggers back through the Gate in COTG until the end of the mission at The Enemy Within, when the team went to PX-575. Along the way, we get glimpses into some fascinating in-between scenes and backstory: Daniel’s transition from robes to BDUs, his arguments with Hammond to convince him to go to Chulak, the confrontation with Teal’c about Sha’re, Kawalsky’s funeral, some Sam and Daniel bonding, the beginning of Jack's training program for Daniel, and much more. There’s very little on-screen time here, but Redbyrd weaves her own scenes so seamlessly with the dialogue we know that you’ll be hard put to recognize where one begins and the other ends!

I had a hard time choosing which Redbyrd fic to feature. This one kind of cheats and gives you three at once. :)

Daniel shut the first shuttable door he'd touched in over a year. He adjusted the water temperature in the shower, then stripped down. He saw motion out of the corner of his eye, and turned his head sharply before he realized that it was a mirror. Something else he hadn't seen in over a year.

He looked at his own reflection, feeling like he was staring at a stranger, though he couldn't see any enormous differences. Straight hair, still fair. Not as light as it had been when he lived in California- on Abydos the hot sun forced you to keep your head covered most of the time. More muscle in the shoulders- well everywhere really. He hadn't been in bad shape when he'd left, but a year in a primitive environment had forced him to do more hard physical work than even an archeologist was accustomed to. He didn't seem any older or more experienced to look at him. He felt like all the thing he'd seen and done should be somehow etched across his skin, the distance between the two planets he'd lived on visible in his eyes. He shivered and got under the shower.

Till Human Voices Wake Us, by Ivorygates. I recced this one close to the end of my second reccing year, and it was already #300. Those were the days, I tell you! :)

I absolutely loved the intensity of this AU, in which Daniel loses everything, and still keeps going. Somehow.

from the original rec:

This powerful, gripping drama takes a sharp bend mid-season 1, as the Earth abruptly dies, taking half of SG-1 with it. Daniel and Teal'c, the shattered survivors, have to try and pick up the pieces. Teal'c wants revenge; Daniel wants survival, for himself, for Sha're, and for his adopted people on Abydos. But with no resources, no supplies, and no leads except a handful of addresses that Daniel remembers from debriefings about future missions, what chance do they have?

Disaster on Chulak makes things worse. Daniel is at the end of his rope when he gates to the last address he remembers from the debriefings: P3R-233. And suddenly, Daniel is facing the apocalypse. Again...

Characterization is stellar. The fic is long and powerful. It's a fantastic read.

"There is a Jaffa word that means 'revenge' in the Tau'ri language. Do you know it?" Teal'c asks suddenly.

"Kel'mar," Daniel says. "You taught it to me."

"You know that it also means 'lifeblood,'" Teal'c says. "That is because, to the Jaffa, revenge is life. We will discover who has killed our brother O'Neill. And they will pay. This I promise you, Daniel Jackson. Kel'mar."

Daniel's breath hitches in his chest. He takes a deep breath and suddenly he's lightheaded. He blinks hard. His eyes are wet, but - thank god - it's not quite tears.


He's tried so hard not to hate anybody. He thinks of Chulak; of the tank of Goa'uld larva exploding in a hail of bullets; thinks of how he felt in that moment, the gun hot in his hands.

He doesn't want to be that person again.

"Teal'c," he says. "We can't... become the Goa'uld. No matter what it costs us."

Teal'c continues to regard him silently.

"I will take you to where you may rest," Teal'c says at last.

Later Daniel will remember that moment and wonder if there was anything different he could have said. Something that would have changed things.

Best Laid Plans, by Emily. For the last rec of this post, here's a delicious Daniel/Sha're AU in which Vala discovers that some things may not be entirely worth the trouble...

from the original rec:

This excellent short story gives us an intense confrontation between two very determined women: Sha're and Vala.

Vala is startled when a strangely-familiar woman marches into her holding cell and demands that she release Daniel from the bracelet she slapped on his wrist in Avalon. There's attack and counter-attack, with Sha're standing her ground and Vala calling her on Amaunet. And in the end, Vala is forced to concede that she can't win this particular battle.

These are both two very strong, determined women. Vala might lose this one, but you'll laugh out loud at her thoughts on a good consolation prize!

"Until then you hold my Daniel hostage and keep him from a posting he has desired for years. Kema-fe sho'ra."

Oh, that's uncalled for.

"So when the took the parasite out of your head, was Daniel there?" Sha're starts, and Vala feels a small triumph at being able to rattle her. "You were the host to Apophis' queen. They were pulling the snake out of my head just as they were putting it in yours, but I remember that much. But when they took it back out, I'd guess that you had a husband and people who cared about you to go home to. I didn't. So don't you judge me."

Sha're stares at her for a long time before closing her eyes. "I will not speak to you of pain and who has suffered more. I have twice buried a husband--"

"In that case maybe Daniel's better off with me," Vala says, checking her stance just in case Sha're decides to try to slap her again.

But Sha're just gives her an unreadable look. "The husband I buried was Daniel."

Vala feels her eyes grow wide.

"You do not know what you play with," Sha're says, and Vala's beginning to think she might be right about that. "I will have no more pain for my Daniel or me. Do not harm him anymore than you have."

There's no "or else" at the end, but there really doesn't need to be.

And here are two of my own stories from this time period, one angsty and one fluffy:

In Search of Possibilities, parts one, two, and three. ~22,000 words. PG. Sam and Daniel (and team), post Double Jeopardy. "Are we still so far from real to you?" When a mission turns disastrous, Sam and Daniel get the chance to find out. Lots of drama and angst, with hope at the end.

SG-1, Ninja Style. ~2,300 words. PG. Team. Teal’c. Ninjas! Aftermath to The Serpent's Lair.

I was amazingly prolific back then, both in terms of writing and reccing. Eh, I was also a little younger. ;)
Tuesday, July 19th, 2016 01:43 am (UTC)
Thank you for this! I've been poking around, finding old friends and visiting new ones. What a great, rich fandom we have.