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Monday, December 12th, 2016 04:54 pm
Welcome to the eighth installment of my celebration of ten years of reccing. Follow the tag if you missed previous years. Lots of Cassie fic recced during these twelve months!

Decade, by Nomad. Closure for both Sara and Jack, with dignity.

From the original rec:

This is aching, poignant closure for Jack and Sara, when they accidentally meet in Washington after Jack's transfer to Homeworld Security. Sara O'Neill is a truly classy lady who deserves more fic love, and this -- despite the painful undercurrents -- delivers that in spades.

So many of us focus on only Charlie when we consider Jack pre-series, but Sara O'Neill is worthy of loving attention, too.

He looked old.

He looked good.

He looked... melancholy.

It was that last that swayed her, killed the first impulse to hurry away before he glanced up and saw that she was there. He looked sad, and it struck her with a strange and terrible truth that she'd never seen Jack O'Neill sad. She'd seen him angry, and hurting, and devastated beyond the point where there was room for human emotion, but never honestly, nakedly sad. It was nothing he would show where there was any possibility that somebody he loved might chance to see it.

It carried the connotation of such loneliness that Sara had sat down in the seat across from him before she had time to consider.

Wherever She Prospers, by Mrs. Pollifax. I always love good Cassie fic!

From the original rec:

I love this overarching sketch of Cassie's life on Earth, from her first unhappy encounter with immunizations to her teenage years to marriage and children. This is five times Cassie wishes she was a "child of Earth," and the underlying thread of melancholy only serves to underscore her inner strength of character and the peace she makes with life's challenges.

Cassie is one of the real success stories of SG-1, and it's always a pleasure to read stories that explore her life on EArth.

Cassie sank down into her chair, dropping the phone to the table and burying her face in her hands. She tried not to play the afternoon over in her head, but she couldn't stop herself.

Girls her age were supposed to turn down proposals of marriage because they weren't ready to be married; because they had their future careers to consider, because they wanted to travel, because they wanted to belong to themselves first.

Deep inside, Cassie knew she felt those things, too, but they weren't what had brought her mind to a screaming halt when he'd asked the question. How could she marry someone without first telling him who she really was? And how could she take the chance of telling anyone she'd known just a few months or even years?

H is for Hair, by Cleo. Teal'c character studies, done well, are always fantastic.

From the original rec:

This is a gorgeous peek into Teal'c's head on the cusp of Season 8, and a fantastic explanation for his decision to stop shaving his head. I love how Teal'c's anticipation of Jack's reaction shows his firm belief that they'll get Jack back from Antarctica, and his own reflections of his journey to freedom over the years. Add a dash of humor with some Daniel, and you've got an excellent Teal'c fic - and there are never enough of those!

Yep, never enough Teal'c fics. So enjoy this one. :)

He no longer required a physical reminder of his goal: the eventual defeat of all the Goa'uld.

That day would come soon enough.

Depth Perception, by Jb. Although I've recced many, many fics of Jb's, I was saving her slot for this fic!

From the original rec:

This is a real treat: a long, detailed drama in which Sam and Daniel struggle off-world, using one another's strengths and their unmistakable rapport as the Science Twins to get themselves - and a badly incapacitated Jack and Teal'c - safely back home again. You'll devour this story and enjoy every minute of it!

I love how Jb writes every member of the team as real people - with arguments and edges and personality clashes sometimes, but ultimately, with deep friendship and trust.

Daniel peered at the drawing and then the device. Jack was right: it was like trying to make sense of a pile of slag. "Okay, no; I have no idea what you're talking about."

"Here; see these embedded lines? They're obviously conductors," she told him. "Think of the piece as being a kind of alien solenoid; if you interrupt the coil, it's not going to work."

Yes, okay, that made sense to him now. He could see a tiny gap where he'd disconnected the component from the DHD. "So, you have to bridge that gap before it'll work. Do you have to do that to all four spots where it was connected to the DHD?"

"More like rebuild the coil than simply bridge the gap, unfortunately. I have to pry up the entire length of the conductors on all four units, and re-seat them." She pulled a small tool kit out of her pack." If you're willing to help, it'll go a lot faster. I know you're good with intricate work, but this will be really painstaking," she warned him.

Jack let out a huff, carefully easing himself down onto his back. "Like laborious isn't already his middle name, Carter. Good time to take a nap, T. You two just wake us when you're done."

Nobody Dies Tonight, by Isawet. Cassie perspective is always a joy.

From the original rec:

This is a simply gorgeous exploration of Cassie over the years, with her acknowledgment of love and loss and inevitable change. It's tender and powerful all at once, with fantastic interactions with Janet, with Sam, and (my personal favorite exchanges) with Teal'c. Read this one and savor.

For the record, the original rec also noted that there are a few paragraphs towards the end that can be interpreted as Cassie perceiving Sam/Jack, but my gen glasses had no trouble overlooking it as simply comfort with one another.

On Hanka, you never say the names of the dead. Cassie likes to think like that, like Hanka as a culture exists somewhere outside her faded childhood memories. She remembers her mother lighting candles of remembrance and explaining it to her, the dead are called back from the spirit world if you call their names, and they might not be as loving as they were alive. Her mother’s face is blurred out, like a fuzzy picture, like when she wears Daniel’s glasses and can’t focus properly. The first time she wakes up and realizes she can’t remember her mother’s face she cries for an hour, locked in the bathroom, until Janet finds her and smooths her hair, calls in sick and sits on the couch with her, watching cartoons and teaching her how to french braid.

Later that week Sam takes her for ice cream, even though it’s raining, and tells her to think of things she can remember, that her mother smelled like cooking spices, how her mother taught her how to bank a fire. Sam says that’s what matters, and Cassie almost believes her, takes every little bit of memory she has left and holds it close to her heart. Then she takes Cassie to a big store and buys plastic umbrellas and bright colored rainboots, enough that Janet sighs big and clucks at them when they return.

When Janet dies she leaves behind hundreds of pictures, dozens of videos, smiling and laughing and hugging Cassie from behind, and she realizes Sam was right.

Untitled Ficlet, by KiaraSayre. Because team=friendship, always.

From the original rec:

This sweet feel-good ficlet is pure S10 teamy goodness, as the team takes post-whumped Daniel (what, there's another kind?) home for food, films, and friendship. 100% guaranteed to leave you with a smile on your face!

I love how they're all so much in sync with one another.

Sam and Teal’c are following them in Sam’s car; when they’re just a few blocks away from Daniel’s house, Sam and Teal’c turn left to pick up the pizzas. They’ve got the movie—Teal’c’s only had the Star Wars DVDs for two years and they already look like a five-year-old’s favored possession in terms of wear and tear—and Daniel’s fairly certain that he’s got some (really, really old) six-packs in the fridge, so they’re all set on that front.

Mitchell pulls right up into Daniel’s driveway and parks. Vala, under the guise of being her overly touchy-feely self, loops an arm around Daniel’s waist and helps support him as he gets out of the car; he rolls his eyes, but leans a bit on her. When Daniel fumbles for his keys, Mitchell just steps forward, picks up the stone porcupine next to the door, and takes out the spare from the compartment.

Daniel grimaces. “Is it that obvious?”

Vala raises an eyebrow. “Daniel. Light-years away from here, on the far edges of the galaxy, in cultures and civilizations that are completely unlike your own--still the only purpose of a stone porcupine is to alert robbers and thieves to the presence of a spare key.”

Daniel’s not certain, but he’s pretty sure Mitchell’s snickering.

The Footprints I Left Behind, by Normative Jean. Gen next-gen!

From the original rec:

I devoured this story with a huge grin on my face: Jennifer Hailey and Cassandra Frasier, on a mission-gone-wrong through the Stargate. I love the characterization and the snark and the shared challenge of living up to huge expectations. Throw in a great science-y twist, and you've got a real winner of a futurefic!

Not only does this win the Olympic gold of Bechdel tests, but it is hugely entertaining, too.

She waves a hand towards Cassie. “Lead the way, Doc.”

“Okay, first of all? Either call me Dr. Frasier, or Cassie. Doc reminds me way too much of Un--an old family friend.” Because seriously, it’s getting pretty annoying, and Cassie has no idea how long they’ll be stuck out here.

“Really?” Hailey asks. “That’s what you’re starting with? All right, then, Doctor Fras...” She trails off, suddenly wide eyes visible even in the dimly lit cave. “Oh. Oh. I’m so sorry, I didn’t even realize you were--”

Cassie hurries to interrupt. “It’s fine, really.” She knows what’s coming next; she’s seen it enough from the SGC personnel who knew her mother. “I guess I didn’t realize you knew my mom. Aren’t you kind of...” Okay, now she awkwardly stalls out. This is going great.

“Young?” Hailey chuckles. It’s sounds different this time, lighter, like there’s an extra layer missing. Maybe it just sounds less cocksure. “Yeah, I get that a lot. ‘Youngest SGC recruit ever,’” she waves a hand through the air as she recounts the epithets. “‘Most promising Air Force cadet since Samantha Carter.’ I guess I should apologize for giving you crap before. If I’d realized who you were, I’d have offered to buy you a sympathy beer before the mission.”

Cassie recognizes her tone; it’s one of commiseration, that of someone who knows what it’s like to be living up to impossible standards, but to still strive for them anyway. Cassie knows she’ll never be Janet Frasier. She doesn’t want to be. But it would be nice if people stopped gawking every time she introduced herself in the infirmary.

Most promising Air Force cadet since Samantha Carter. Oh, no way... “Oh! I know you!”

Hailey runs a hand over her face and mutters something really rude under her breath. “Awesome.”

Catch a Breath, by Frith in Thorns. Happy ending Threads team fic!

From the original rec:

A warming, teamy missing scene from Threads, in which four friends naturally drift towards one another and (possibly despite themselves) find quiet comfort. This leads smoothly into the scene at Jack's cabin, and will definitely make you smile!

Classic team. ::happy sigh:: You just can't beat it.

They put Daniel straight in the infirmary, which seemed pointless because he was clearly perfectly fine. But at the same time, he had been dead. That made it tricky.

Jack sauntered down there after he had finally finished writing out damage reports. He suspected he had been kept away on purpose – he had a lot less patience than Daniel when it came to unnecessary medical exams. Or what he saw as unnecessary. But he was certain that they weren’t going to find any injuries at all unless they cut open the man’s head, and thus far the doctors had always stopped just short of doing that.

Sure enough, when he eventually got down to the infirmary there were clearly no medical tests going on. Daniel was sitting cross-legged in scrubs on top of a bed playing cards with Sam, who was sitting likewise at the other end. Teal’c stood behind her.

“Carter, they’re cheating,” Jack said.

“I know, Sir,” Carter responded, still checking her hand. “I’m winning anyway, though, so I thought I’d humour them.”

Connections, by Magickmoons. The first tentative beginning of a long friendship.

From the original rec:

This is a lovely episode tag for The Enemy Within, as Sam takes the first tentative step towards developing a friendship with her commanding officer. Add a nod to O'Malley's, a drunken Daniel, and a genuine tribute to Kawalsky, and you've got a nice introspective piece that feels solidly right.

They had to start somewhere from the young captain with a chip on her shoulder and the anti-science sneering of a commanding officer. This is an excellent what-if of how that happened.

“You want to go get drunk?”

That got a reaction. His head whipped up, and he stared at her incredulously. “Excuse me, Captain?”

She hesitated only for a second before slightly revising her question. In for a penny... she mentally shrugged. “You want to get drunk, Sir?”

An Immense Distance, by Kedd. Superb S8 characterization for Jack.

From the original rec:

Here is some nice angsty introspective from Jack in S8, mourning the automatic loss of closeness that his promotion and loss of his team entails. He considers the new distance that exists with Teal'c, with Daniel, with Sam... and, with perfect Jack headspace, decides that the sacrifice is worth it.

After seven years, this is a superb explanation of Jack's choices, no matter how much it hurts.

His eyes focus sharply on the entranceway as he hears Carter give a brief laugh, followed by an indignant, "Daniel!" and a soft thwacking sound. He can't recall when he last had a non-work related conversation with any of them, the three people he knows better than anyone else around here. He doesn't know what Teal'c's opinion is on the most recent late-night movie-of-the-month, or how Daniel's recovery has been progressing (other than what the medical staff and reports tell him) and if the newest blend of coffee was as good as the blue mountain stuff he likes, or how Carter's been enjoying having a life. He lets out a small sigh, as he realizes that he's more up to date on Walter's kids' exploits than on those of SG-1 and schools his face to impassivity as they enter the briefing room.

My writing dropped drastically, but here are links to two stories:

Left Unspoken. ~1,850 words. PG. Five things Jack and Daniel never told anyone about their first trip through the Stargate. Includes references to Shades of Grey and Meridian.

Crossing the Line. ~1,200 words. PG. Ra may have punished Nagada, but Sha'uri isn't ready to abandon her newfound knowledge just yet. An expanded scene from Stargate: the Movie, and the third part of the Lines series.


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