"The Hanged Man is a card about suspension, not life or death. This is a time of trial or meditation, selflessness, sacrifice, prophecy. The Querent stops resisting; instead he makes himself vulnerable, sacrifices his position or opposition, and in doing so, gains illumination. Answers that eluded him come clear, solutions to problems are found. He sees the world differently, has almost mystical insights. This card can also imply a time when everything just stands still, a time of rest and reflection before moving on. Things will continue on in a moment, but for now, they float, timeless." - aeclectic.net
Okay this round has two new favorites for me! WOOT! Go read if you haven't already, because I'm feeling the squee more than ever now \o/
H/D is back to being SHINY, SHINY, SHINY!
The One wherein we see why H/D will not last with the Epilogue
Protect Me From What I Want -- Team Canon
The story takes us from the last chapter of the book to the epilogue in a dozen scenes with just 4000 words. While it works, I still would have liked to see the fic fleshed out some more. Draco's characterization clicked with me but I'd have loved some more glimpses into Harry's thoughts. The actual H/D occurs behind the scenes and is alluded to but never actually shown - just a single kiss that precipitates it.
There is a part of fandom that doesn't believe Harry would leave Ginny for Draco in an Epilogue compliant fic. This fic explains that point of view. The last line definitely hits you hard and makes you wonder whether H/D can be canon in that setting.
It makes you hope for Epilogue compliant fics that try their best to make Harry real and H/D an inevitability.
The One With the Imperius Curse
The Spell -- Team Fanon
There is a lost and WTF quality about this fic - of what happens when people lose focus and drive and need to find the light again. It's pretty pr0ny too >__> Then there was also the connection of H/D to Newton's Laws which made me go \o/ since Harry/Draco in terms of formulae and scientific theories is made of win :)
The fic opens up with a bang, Draco having been caught on camera in flagrante. The story's got a bit of an AU feel since not only did Hermione revive Snape, she's also dating him. Things aren't going as everyone had thought they would - or more precisely, people never really thought about what would happen once the war was over. There's a point where Ron and Harry are drinking firewhiskey and the lack of direction is so apparent. There's this question hanging, waiting to be answered, What now?
The moment Harry agreed to be placed under Imperius, it was kinda obvious to me that he was going to throw it off. So it came as a surprise to see Harry initially let himself fall under Draco's spell. It was at that point I realized that Harry had lost his sense of purpose. And him later swimming away from salvation? It was a WTF moment for me since that was such a Not Harry moment. But at the same time it also screamed Fanon and how in another world, yeah Harry could get this lost. And at the end we have the flood which mirrors the fiendfyre scene in book 7 - in this case it's Draco who saves Harry in the Room of Requirement.
You can say this fic is odd or unique - both apply. It's got the pr0n but it also has several other elements that set it apart from the other fest fics. Oh, side note: Crossdressing!Harry made me picture a mirror image of the crossdressing!Draco on the pornish pixies website XD
The One Where Harry Gets Run Over By Ron's Car
How You Carry On -- Team Epilogue ♥ ♥ ♥
Ah, shiny epilogue!fic is back! *dances* The last two posts for the fest lacked the squee and I was wondering if it was because I was losing my burning interest in H/D or something. This fic proved that was definitely NOT the case ^__^ I am back on the H/D bandwagon. In fact, this fic had me looking up at my poster by makani a lot. The author takes canon and the JKR interviews and just gets the HP world *right*. This fic was so easy and comfy to read ♥
The author blends canon, wit and humor together seamlessly. You would think that explanations of the tarot card would feel contrived or forced. However, James and the other Potter kids are a treasure and beyond hilarious. Ginny was the only one to put a damper on things - and that was perfect for future H/D of course ^__^
The interaction with Dumbledore had me banging the table -it was so uniquely funny! And discovering that Harry's near death experience wasn't the result of a dastardly villain but Ron's bad driving? Priceless. I keep snickering whenever I think of it XD
This is definitely on my fest favorites list XD I have to mention though, this is also a prompt!fic in that it made sure to satisfy the tarot prompt and yet by the end of the fic I still wanted to read more about Harry and Draco's relationship. However, unlike past fics, it isn't a desperate, oh-my-god-are-they-going-to-be-together kind of want, but rather oh-my-god-I-want-to-see-them-together-mo
Fun all around and definitely a pick :) This is how I wanted my grown up H/D long before book 7 came out - H/D as colleagues and with kids and just AWESOME.
The One with the Inverted Werewolf Curse
The Arc of the Pendulum -- Team EWE ♥ ♥ ♥
This fic made me think of two H/D Classics that I've read repeatedly in the past. One of them is an all time favorite of mine, so obviously this fic is now in my top favorites list EVER. It's a fic with a werewolf spin and a bit of a Disney (Beauty &the Beast) twist. This is the kind of story I had hoped Team Fanon would provide, but surprisingly, it's Team EWE that delivered. And I probably like it even more because the characterization is so canon. It's a brilliant blend of fandom, canon and originality.
The opening is haunting and eerie as we read about Lucius and Narcissa and the change of fortunes for the Malfoy family. The story moves at a gradual but steady pace, keeping momentum so even with over 30,000 words you don't feel the time go by as you're sucked into the fic.
I love fractured fairytales so seeing Draco in the tower and Lucius leave his son behind and at Harry's mercy was just fascinating. Then the scene in the woods made me remember the Disney movie and I was all ♥
Why did I love this so much? Well perhaps it was because watching Harry battle against the darker instincts of the beast within was like discovering the Corruption Series for the first time. This story is creature!fic at its finest. And that's not all. It also has moments where its damn funny too - the discussion about Harry's handwriting had me laughing so hard XD
It's a fic with a number of levels and so many things you can point out to sigh over. The moment Harry changes into a wolf is one; sad and sweet and poignant. Harry writing the apology. The sense of loss Draco feels when he sees cured!Harry (why, yes I did prefer the Beast in the Disney movie to the prince at the end XD)
The author was also able to show that being nice and generous and self sacrificing - none of it comes easy for Draco. And Harry is never forgotten, with his own struggle to find his way back to equilibrium. It's just beautiful when the two get together.
Draco's sacrifice at the climax of the fic had me thinking of A Thousand Beautiful Things, one of my all time favorite fics ever. I can actually draw a lot of parallels to that fic - the originality of the curse, Lucius as the mastermind behind it all, the restoration of the Malfoy name/status/fortune, a self sacrificing Draco (which is rarely written and done right). It's like I got my favorite fic fused in with the latest canon and I love it.
Yeah, this fic is definitely among the best in the fest IMO. It's also a story I'm probably going to reread time and again.
My Top Teams for The Hanged Man: Team EWE followed by Team Epilogue
There have been two things I've always wanted with H/D - grownup!H/D fics with kids and fabulously original AU H/D. This week I got BOTH, from Team Epilogue and Team EWE. H/D = OTP LOVE!
All Tarot Prompts can be found via the fests tag.
My masterlist of recs for hd_worldcup can be found here