Countdown to Summer – Part 2

blinkie2Happy FanFiction Friday, Ladies!

Ever have one if those days when you need to embrace familiarity…get home, pop on your favourite yoga pants and softest sweater? Or maybe you’re in a reminiscing mood, recapturing little moments that made you smile, so you make your most comforting drink, grab the yummiest chocolate and flip through pictures of a happy day…or catching up with a girlfriend you haven’t seen in aaaaaages, and as soon as they say ‘hi!’ you just pick right up where you left off, like you’ve never been apart? You know what I mean, right? Yeah…thought so! It feels so good!

Well, the FicSix are having a few moments like that, revisiting fics that give us the warm fuzzies or butterflies of excitement…some stories you just pick up and sink into like an old friend…guaranteed to conjure up THAT exact emotion that you need, that never let us down and always hit the right spot.

So, here are our secret, guilty pleasures…we’ll show you ours if you show us yours!

Come on ladies, let us know which fics you sneak back to when you need a little pick-me-up!

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*Reviews by WiltshireGlo*

The Gravity Series by Drotuno

*made by Barburella*
*made by Barburella*

Blood & Glory

The definition of a mercenary is a soldier for hire. His crew are trained fighting machines. Hers are smart PIs. What happens when they need each other to survive? Canon couples. AH/AU. Rated M for lots of reasons, including violence and lemons.

Twilight, M, English, Hurt/Comfort & Romance, chapters: 33, words: 302k+, favs: 2k+, follows: 1k+, updated: 6/25/11 published: 2/18/11, Edward Bella

http://www.fanfiction.net/s/6755101/1/Blood-Glory

Sin & Innocence

The sequel to Blood & Glory: Gravity’s business is booming, but what happens when a ghost from the past shows up, taking the only thing that matters? Can the team work together to fix it, or will they rip apart at the seams? Rated M E/B

Twilight, M, English, Adventure & Romance, chapters: 27, words: 264k+, favs: 1k+, follows: 654, updated: 11/18/11 published: 6/26/11, Edward Bella

http://www.fanfiction.net/s/7119225/1/Sin-Innocence

Smoke & Mirrors

Third in the Gravity Series. Carlisle brings a client to Gravity for protection, but there is more to this famous female singer than meets the eye. Bella, Edward, and crew not only will have to keep her safe but figure out who is threatening her. AH/Sequel

Twilight, M, English, Romance & Adventure, chapters: 26, words: 255k+, favs: 1k+, follows: 636, updated: 2/26/12 published: 11/23/11, Edward Bella

http://www.fanfiction.net/s/7574955/1/Smoke-Mirrors

BGBLINKIE

The Gravity Series by Drotuno

Confession time, ladies… MercWard is one of my top Edwards EVAH! Why is he called MercWard? He’s a mercenary. His crew is for hire, they do the jobs no one else wants or can touch. Bella is a Private Investigator and their teams need to work together and combine their skills. The story begins with Bella in trouble,  both teams unite and the investigating -and computer hacking-techniques- of her girls complement the military know-how of the guys to solve not only who’s behind the danger and the reasons behind it, but eliminate it completely. Maybe…

Drotuno really captured my imagination with the whole series. Yes, the stories stand alone-you don’t necessarily need to read them all- but the characters develop, their lives move on and the reading experience becomes deeper and richer with each subsequent story. I don’t think it’s a spoiler to say that Edward also becomes one of my top DilfWards in the sequels!

I can’t pick out one of the series as my favourite.  There’s so much going on throughout all of them, the tension, fear and suspense get to me in each one, so my re-read story is all of them…all three. It’s a commitment worth making!

With so many new fics springing up daily-and so many brilliant fics amongst them- why would I choose such a mammoth read to indulge in time and again, I hear you ask. Well, ladies, there are lots of reasons…maybe it’s the complexity of Edward. He is strong, ruthless, intelligent and focussed, yet he is gentle, kind, thoughtful and loving…not to mention compassionate …and good with his hands in more ways than one IYKWIM! Perhaps it’s strong, intelligent Bella; brave, courageous, and loving, a girl we’d all like to befriend, she’s likeable and funny but vulnerable and real. Or could it be the their friends and family? Quirky, loyal, tough but full of love and quick to laugh. Actually, as an ensemble cast, this is definitely my A team. There again, it could be the stories, not just the continuing and developing thread of their relationships running throughout the series, but the situations that arise to unite the team, the crimes and mysteries that need to be solved and the bad guys that need to be taken down.

Maybe it’s all of those things, combined with Drotuno’s gripping writing, her amazing storytelling-chasing breathtaking drama with some of the most tender moments you could read. I really care about the whole team, not just Bella and Edward, who are equally well written, but every last one of the extended family matters to me. Now, that is quite a feat to achieve!

How to select an extract to give you just a taste of how good this series is? Although this is a small spoiler, I think we all know that Bella and Edward need to meet, so, here is the moment they meet each other as adults, with Edward helping Bella out of a nasty situation.

She started getting frantic, and I finally stopped her. “Easy, Bella,” I said, trying to sound as calm as I could for her sake because I know she had to be freaking out about what was going on and who was in the room with her.

Bella stopped struggling, but she sobbed, her whole body going limp with exhaustion.

…………….

“Shh. It’s okay, it’s okay,” I soothed her, my fingers working as quickly as they could to free her……

…………….

Her arms shot out, grabbing at my jacket and T-shirt. “Don’t leave me!” She was stronger than I’d expected, practically pulling me over. “Please!” She was barely able to speak clearly.

“Okay, I won’t, I swear,” I vowed, thinking if my father didn’t get a hold of this guy, then I would spend my last days hunting his ass. No one should be treated the way Bella had.

The only thing I could think of was my jacket, so I shrugged out of it and wrapped it around her as best I could with her fingers still clutching my T-shirt.

“Can you hold on?” I asked her softly, and she nodded.

I wrapped her arms around my neck, lifting her by her back and underneath her legs. She was lighter than I’d expected, and she clung to me fiercely, her tears never stopping.

Once her head hit my shoulder, she quieted almost instantly, and I climbed the stairs back up into the kitchen.

“I got her…she’s alive,” I told my dad over the headset.

“I lost him,” he growled back. “Meet me at the car.”

“Yes, sir.”

I took the most direct path I could back to where my car was parked on the side of the road. My father emerged from the woods just about the same time I did, but he sped up to get to me and the precious cargo I was carrying.

“Bella,” he breathed, pushing her hair from her face. “Sweetheart, can you look at me?”

“Carlisle?” she muttered groggily. “Did Alice…”

“Yes, she was brilliant, Bella. We’re going to take you someplace safe, okay?”

“‘Kay.” She nodded slowly, finally looking up at me, her very sad and tired eyes locking with mine and closing back again, like she couldn’t keep them open.

“Bella, do you remember Edward?” he asked her, opening her eyelids, but they were dilated.

“I know those eyes,” she muttered.

I can’t even count the times I’ve read the whole series. Sometimes I’ve dipped into favourite chapters, occasionally I’ve read one story or another, but mostly I’ve started right at the beginning and kept on going to the end. Each time I’ve fallen in love with Edward, cried for and cheered on Bella, laughed along with the gang and enjoyed every word.

http://www.fanfiction.net/u/1966130/

http://www.drotuno.blogspot.co.uk/

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Branching Inward by LifeInTheSnow

 image

Branching Inward ~ He’s a brilliant, sensual, tactile artist with a huge personality and love for life…at least, he used to be. She’s a shrewd historian, content to observe from a distance…until now. At Newcoven College in Clearwater, OH, no secret is safe. All Human.

Twilight, M, English, Romance & Drama, chapters: 28, words: 165k+, favs: 3k+, follows: 2k+, updated: 6/30/11 published: 10/3/10, Bella Edward Complete

Sometimes stories just stick with you…haunt you…make you think and ponder. Branching Inward did this to me. It’s a story filled with layers upon layers-mystery, intrigue, love and passion, and strong, memorable characters. LifeInTheSnow engaged me straight away and even now there are times when my fingers scroll through libraries of fics and nothing is quite hitting the spot and I’m drawn to her intelligent, thoughtful words.

I do love a tortured, passionate Edward…I just can’t resist the brooding passion and moody moments and Branching Inward’s Edward is this and more. He’s a charismatic artist, lecturing and inspiring. He may also be incredibly sexy… 😉  In the Prologue we see Bella just as she makes the decision to join the staff at Newhaven and glances out of the window, spotting a rather unusual man…

Gradually, my attention was drawn to a lone figure, a man, moving slowly on long legs across the quad toward the edge of the clearing just below my window. He was dressed in rugged boots and outerwear, a dark woolen hat pulled over his ears and a grey scarf masking most of his face. Others rushed past him without so much as a nod, as if he wasn’t even there, and he seemed equally indifferent to them. His  pace was so unhurried as he strolled the path, his posture upright and his gait purposeful rather than hunched and frenzied like everyone else. A mountain lion among scampering squirrels. It intrigued me. What was he doing?

He surprised me by stepping off the path, leaving oval impressions in the ankle-deep powder as he stalked toward the snow-laden branches of the round oak. Without its leaves, frosted all over with a white fringe, the tree reminded me of a dandelion, spherical and spindly- but huge, probably hundreds of years old.

Effortlessly, this person hauled himself up onto a low branch and scrambled up a bit. The tree was stronger than I thought, barely moving under his weight. He was suddenly closer to me—if he climbed much further we would be at eye level.

Inexplicably, I felt like a voyeur, blushing a little as he removed a glove, shoving it into a pocket, and reached out his hand toward a nearby branch. Steamy vapor rose from his pink skin. His hands moved within the tree, clipping or pruning. He shoved something into the deep cargo pockets of his heavy work pants. I guessed that he might be a landscaper or building-and-grounds engineer. From what I could see of his face, he was handsome, with a strong jaw and pale, creamy skin, a little bit flushed from the cold.

The intensity of his concentration stirred something in me. He turned his gaze to the sidewalk below and, in a sort of offhanded way, began jostling the low-hanging branch with his foot, just enough so that the heaviest snow deposits and ice chunks tumbled to the ground below and the branch was made lighter. I saw that it no longer obstructed the path. A pair of bicyclists meandered by, deep in conversation as they pedaled, both of them clearing the branches easily.

……………

Now my mystery man lingered in his perch, elbows braced against a leafless tree limb. I stayed totally still, transfixed by the character in the tree, not wanting the show to end and really hoping it wouldn’t end with him startled by yours truly and pitching into thin air. He just gazed at his surroundings with an inscrutable expression. He looked pained, cautious—conflicted somehow. Steam puffed out from his lips and the recess between his neck and his scarf.

As he turned his face a few degrees-away from the tree, toward the sun-I gasped to see a shock of brilliant color refracted in his eyes. I could see even from this distance that his eyes were green like soft moss. His one gloved hand rose to remove the woolly hat and shake ice chunks loose, revealing a mop of unruly bronze hair. His other hand, bare and wet with crystals of clean snow, raked across his forehead and through his hair, and he visibly relaxed. Small lines of worry disappeared from his face.

He palmed some fresh snow and scraped it along the back of his neck and up along his temples.

I gulped, blinking slowly.

If I thought he was handsome before, he was utterly transcendent at this moment. Peaceful and exposed, neither suffering through the cold nor immune to it, but absorbing it with an uncritical openness that shocked me. The sun danced in his eyes and he seemed to take a moment to bask in the cold, bright light.

Then, just as quickly, his expression clouded over once again. He squinted and looked down, hopping lightly to the ground and walking back in the direction he came.

As LifeInTheSnow allows the story to gently unfold, we learn of past sadness, and watch as both Bella and Edward learn to trust each other and piece together small, but significant clues, which help to lift dark clouds hanging over Edward and his family. Their connection is beautiful, the story captivating, the writing exquisite.

I devour this from beginning to end every time I pick it up. The words are like poetry, the imagery so vivid, I feel like I’m visiting another world when I read it. Sharing my feelings with you today makes me want to read it again!

http://www.fanfiction.net/s/6372008/1/Branching-Inward

http://www.fanfiction.net/u/2350671/LifeInTheSnow

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*Reviews by Gingerandgreen*

I’m not much of a fic re-reader. I tend to turn to Austen when I need the comfort of a well worn story, and this eccentricity made me nervous that my comfort fic would not be your comfort fic. But when we all wanted to review Secrets and Lies and I drew the lucky straw, my insecurities eased up a bit. In the end, we all take comfort in a damn good love story, don’t we?

Secrets and Lies by BellaScotia

Secrets and Lies banner

*Made by Melee03*

Secrets and LiesBella once told a lie. A lie that cost her everything she ever wanted. 10 years later she returns to her hometown to an ailing father, an angry best friend, and the man from whom she has kept a secret that threatens to unravel her existence. M AU AH OOC Rated M for language and lemons

Rated: Fiction M – English – Hurt/Comfort/Romance – Bella & Edward – Chapters: 38 – Words: 283,910 – Reviews: 673 – Favs: 452 – Follows: 265 – Updated: 02-25-13 – Published: 02-16-13 – Status: Complete – id: 9016564

SaL does not start off sounding like a love story. It has one of those intensely emotional beginnings that you can’t imagine could ever possibly, in any universe, become the sweetness we crave. Adult Bella comes home to visit Charlie, and is shocked to find him dying of cancer:

“So, you’ll let us come?”

He nods, and then hauls me into his arms. I feel his bony cheek pressed to the top of my head, as I fight against the sob bubbling in my throat. I revel in the feel of his arms around me and know that I really want these last few months with him. I couldn’t go back to Florida knowing he is here, going through this alone.

He pulls back and gently brushes away my tears with his thumb. “What about the Cullens?”

I stiffen slightly even though I knew he’d ask this. “I don’t care about the Cullens anymore.”

A cynical smile touches his lips. “You cared enough to hide from them for ten years.”

At one time I would have argued with him about that. I would have denied that I’d been hiding, but it was the truth. It seemed such a waste now, all those years of staying away, of missing out on time with Charlie.

“I can handle the Cullens,” I insist, with greater conviction than I’m feeling.

Coming back here and avoiding them for a few days is one thing, but actually living here, and knowing I will have to face them soon is a whole different ball game. But Charlie needs me, and I’m not about to let them get in the way of that.

“I don’t doubt that,” he sighs. “But Edward’s–”

“Dad, I don’t want to talk about Edward Cullen.”

It has always been an unspoken agreement between Charlie and I that we don’t talk about the Cullens. He tried once, a few months after I left, but I made it clear then that I would never want to know anything about Edward’s life. It hurt too much.

The secrets and lies in this story are huge, life-altering things. They are shocking, but in a completely believable, even relatable way. BellaScotia doesn’t hide from the appalling choices perfectly ordinary people can make. Neither Bella nor Edward is a hero, except to the people who love them unconditionally. For Bella, this includes her son, Jacob – one of the most adorable and believable little monsters in Twific. I love my girls, but Jacob makes me long for a little boy!

Edward’s not actually introduced to us until chapter eight, and when he is, boy, is he mad. But he’s Edward, and captivating as always:

The heat of his hand seeps into mine, and in the confines of the car I’m suddenly all too aware of him. His eyes are harder than they used to be; he has a few faint lines around them, and his hair is no longer wild but cut and styled immaculately.

My heart starts to beat a little faster as unwanted memories start to push to the fore. My memory hasn’t done him justice, I’d almost forgotten how goddamned beautiful he is. He opens his mouth to speak and my eyes dart to his soft, full lips, which are framed by a day’s growth of golden brown stubble.

No matter how badly these two have messed up, they are drawn back to one another with all the heat and passion of fated love:

I’m not strong enough to withstand the sheer force of the ride, and my head falls back against Edward’s shoulder. Jacob is giggling beside me, his hands flailing in the air, but there is no sound coming from Edward. I’m practically nestled in the crook of his arm, which feels entirely too intimate to me.

Gripping the hand rail, I pull myself forward in an effort to gain some much needed distance, but I can’t fight the gravitational force that keeps pulling me towards Edward.

“If you sit back, this would be a lot less painful,” he half yells above the music, his voice shaking in time with the rattling of the carriage.

There are other stories out there with similar plot lines, but none of them treat the subject matter with the grit and realism that BellaScotia does. For a small Scottish woman, she has an enormous heart, and the reason this is a comfort fic is the utter believability of it all. It could easily have happened to people you went to school with. Although, people you went to school with are not usually written about with the heat and intimacy that this Edward and Bella share! Whew!

*Made by Melee03*

*Made by Melee03*

SaL is a repost, so you may have missed out on it if you are relatively new to the fandom. This story comes highly recommended with the FicSix stamp of approval – give it a try.

http://www.fanfiction.net/s/9016564/1/Secrets-and-Lies

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The Diva Diaries by KiyaRaven

Banner by Vican

*Made by Vican*

The Diva Diaries ~Dear Diary, When he left, I became numb. Safe in a bubble of denial and bitterness. Now, he’s back, and I’ve agreed to be his co-star in a new Broadway play. Obviously, if there were a Nation of Stupid People, I would be their Queen. A/H

Rated: Fiction M – English – Romance/Angst – Bella & Edward – Chapters: 36 – Words: 327,261 – Reviews: 12,480 – Favs: 6,157 – Follows: 5,508 – Updated: 10-04-12 – Published: 02-28-10 – Status: Complete – id: 5782299

If SaL is comforting for being realistic and wild, the Diva Diaries is a completely different cup of tea. It is grandiose and stunning, and far, far outside of my realm of experience. Its comfort comes from the fantasy, and from the beautiful words – some of which are Shakespeare’s – constructed in such an absorbing way, it’s unputdownable.

KiyaRaven’s Actorward is intense; moody; difficult; brooding; sizzling hot; passionate; broken; delicious. He is the ultimate bad boyfriend you can’t stay away from:

My open hand connects with the side of his face with a satisfying ‘whack’. He rubs his cheek as his expression morphs from shock, to hurt, to an awed smile.

“It’s wrong that I’ve missed you hitting me, isn’t it?” he asks, his voice low. “But you have to admit, that was one hell of a kiss.”

“You’re an asshole,” I snap, my hand itching to slap the other side of his irritatingly handsome face. “Why was I stupid enough to think this could possibly work?”

I hate that my voice hitches when I say it, and it only makes me glare harder.

“Isabella? Is there a problem?” Our director, Aro, comes over as I attempt to incinerate the smirking asshole in front of me into a pile of dust using only the force of my gaze.

“Yes, Aro, as a matter of fact there is a problem,” I say, surprisingly calm considering I want to beat a man to death with the large script I’m holding. “Apparently Mr. Cullen doesn’t know the difference between a stage-kiss and giving me a tonsillectomy with his tongue.”

The asshole levels me with a serious gaze, all fake-hurt and furrowed brows. “Methinks the lady doth protest too much.”

Oh yeah, Bella, methinks so too!

 DD is written from Bella’s POV in two different timeframes. There is the past, when they were naive and lustful and virginal (well, Bella, anyway; for a while); and the present, when they are bitter, desperate and in denial (well, Bella, anyway; for a while). You might think that’s confusing, but it keeps the mystery of what happened to the pair going for much longer, and it is so much more satisfying when it’s resolved. 

This story is in my top five all time best, and it’s not just for the UST, which is at the top of the scale!

The partnerships are switched around. I get Cullen, Edward and he doesn’t look happy about it.

He sits next to me, and I watch his jaw clench and unclench. It’s fascinating. He turns and catches me staring. His eyes are mixture between dark green and I’m-going-to-kill-you-now-and-remove-all-your-skin.

Jeez, what the heck is his problem?

I turn away and wonder what I’ve done to piss him off so royally.

Wow, we are so going to suck as partners.

Irina paces in front of the group and addresses us all.

“For this last session, everyone will be given the same task. Your scenario is ‘Mirror-Image’.”

Sounds easy.

“It won’t be easy.”

Dammit.

“This exercise is about trust, openness, and making a connection with the other person. You need to be completely available to them. No self-consciousness. No artifice. Just raw, pure energy. If you don’t relax into it, you’ll fail, and if you fail to make a connection with the other person, I’ll know it. Neither of you leads, neither of you follows. You have to sense each other’s movement. Make it interesting and original. Move around the space. Got it?”

We all nod mutely.

I have no flipping clue what she’s talking about. Cullen is rubbing his eyes with his fingers and making a quiet groaning sound. I figure he doesn’t either. 

“You move; he moves.” Sounds familiar?

I could wax lyrical about what a masterpiece this story is, but nothing I say will do the magic justice. Instead, I’m going to do what I never do – give you another long excerpt. Read the extraordinary juxtaposition of The Bard’s words with Kiya’s, and if it doesn’t melt you in your seat, I don’t know what will:

I exhale and look over at him. He’s ready, and he takes a steadying breath as he walks toward me. I turn to him, seething. His eyes are full of regret but it doesn’t change what he’s done.

“Juliet…”

And with that one word, he’s my Romeo and every word I utter is absolutely and completely true.

“O serpent heart, hid with a flowering face,” I whisper, feeling bitterness flow through my veins. “Did ever dragon keep so fair a cave?”

“Please…” he begs, reaching out his hand to me. I slap it away.

“Beautiful tyrant! Fiend angelical! Dove-feather’d raven! Wolvish-ravening lamb!”

He steps forward and tries to put his arms around me, but he can’t expect to touch me. I shove his arms and slap at his chest. He doesn’t stop me.

“Despised substance of divinest show! Just opposite to what thou justly seem’st: a damned saint! An honorable villain!”

“Juliet…please.”

I look into his eyes and see nothing but regret.

He steps forward, tentatively, reaching for my hands. I push him away.

“He killed Mercutio,” he whispers, his voice shaky and unsure. “I don’t…I didn’t mean to. Please…I…I need you.”

A ball of stone falls into my stomach.

There it is. The one reason that circumvents all others.

He needs me.

As much as I hate to admit it, I need him to.

I walk to him, unable to stay away any longer. He gazes at me, his eyes full of remorse, begging forgiveness.

“Juliet…”

I reach up slowly and rest my hands on his chest.

I don’t forgive him, but I also can’t hate him.

I think he understands because he sighs and wraps me in his arms, drawing me into him. I wind my arms around his neck and bury my head in the warm skin beneath his jaw.

He smells so good.

He hugs me tighter, his nose pressing into my collarbone as his whole body melts into mine, every muscles relaxing as he wraps me in a silent apology.

I whisper, “O nature, what hadst thou to do in hell when thou didst bower the spirit of a fiend in moral paradise of such sweet flesh?”

He pulls back and takes my face in his hands, murmuring words of regret as he kisses my cheek, my jaw, my neck.

I look up at him and my breath catches. His eyes are full of such sorrow and longing. I cup his cheek, and he closes his eyes, swallowing hard.

“Was ever a book containing such vile matter so fairly bound?”

I trail my fingers down his neck. His skin is so warm. He leans down, his mouth just above mine. He wants to kiss me, to reassure himself that everything is okay between us.

He leans down further but I hold my lips just out of his reach, breathing his air as his eyes become clouded and heavy.

God, look at him. So, so beautiful.

He pulls my body flush against his and suddenly nothing matters but him. I groan, my weakness sickening me.

“O that deceit should dwell in such a gorgeous palace.”

http://www.fanfiction.net/s/5782299/1/The-Diva-Diaries

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And now for something completely different:

Stigmata Tomato by BellaFlan

*Made by FL95*

*Made by FL95*

Stigmata Tomato ~ Alert the Darwin Awards! Bella Swan, depressed and demented, nearly dies trying to kill herself & is shipped to Forks WA. Watch her update her facebook status and fall in love. WARNING: MA, very dark comedy. OOC w/ nod to canon , E/B some Jake , AH

Rated: Fiction M – English – Humor/Angst – Bella & Edward – Chapters: 41 – Words: 102,923 – Reviews: 3,159 – Favs: 1,336 – Follows: 1,215 – Updated: 08-08-12 – Published: 07-03-10 – Status: Complete – id: 6107100

Warning: there are triggers ahead. Well, not in this review, but most certainly in this story. There’s not much comforting about it in all honesty, because it is a deeply dark and unsettling tale. Except that it is told with such loving irreverence, it makes everything better rather than worse, and therein lies its comfort. If we can’t laugh in the face of tragedy, we may as well not be human. If anyone can make you laugh about the very worst things life has to offer, its BellaFlan:

To state the obvious: I was fucking depressed. It was beyond anything I could articulate on my sad little blog (ironically called “Sylvia Plath is Dead,” but I digress). I was shrouded in a hackneyed darkness of epic proportions that I couldn’t see any logical way out of. Intellectually, I understood that I was young, only eighteen, and likely my perspective would change given enough time and opportunity, but who the fuck took the time to check in with the left side of the brain when contemplating offing oneself?

So after some well thought out tweeting with my childhood friend, Jake, I made a twitter poll list entitled “Best Ways for Bella Swan to End her Pathetic Existence.” In hindsight, not exactly the smartest plan, but I loved making lists. Taking random information and formulating a workable plan out of it was like mapping the stars; finding order in the seemingly chaotic universe. The Devil is not, in fact, in the details; God is.

Faced with the bitter reality that my plan didn’t work, I forced myself to admit defeat. My fingers were prunes, and my fucking wrists were sore. Man, I should have known I’d fail. Why did I bother pulling a towel out of the linen closet if I was supposed to bleed out in the tub? Renee would have been pissed if I stained the good Ralph Lauren towels. Actually, that in itself made it almost worth shedding a few drops of blood onto the white terry cloth.

The water sloshed over the side of the tub as I heaved my body out. It didn’t matter that I soaked the floor. It didn’t matter that mould would now grow under the shaggy bathmat, and everyone would inhale spores and die of the lethal biohazard that water and natural fibres breed. Apathy is part of the human condition. It was a cold comfort that maybe I would die and no one would care.

That’s when I slipped and cracked my head open on the faucet. Hm, best laid plans, and all that…

My last thought before my vision darkened was: I’m one of those assholes they write about in chain emails. I’m a Darwin Award recipient.

So Bella is a suicidal wreck and a compulsive comedian. She’s one hot mess, and just to warn you, her language is about as vulgar as I’ve come across in Twific. It’s appropriate for her character, believe me.

 As for Edward, he’s a sex-haired enigma with problems of his own:

“Thank you, Ms. Swan. I should warn you of some of the side effects of-“

“You’re Sex-hair’s father!” I screamed.

“Pardon me?”

“Sex-hair! You know, Abercrombie swagger, bronze fuck-me hair and gorgeous as all fuck…what’s his name?”

Dr. Cullen appeared positively flummoxed, his eyes narrowing in concentration. “Er…Emmett?”

“Edward,” Sex-hair corrected, smirking at me from the doorway.

Dr. Cullen turned away from me, and deposited his penlight into his coat pocket. “Son, what are you doing here?”

“I saw the ambulance pass by the Swan house and I was worried,” he explained, looking at me with genuine concern, not just morbid curiosity.

“Who let you into the ER intake?”

“A nurse,” he shrugged.

“Which nurse?”

“I don’t kiss and tell.”

Oh my God, he was such a slut!

“I didn’t realize that you were friends with Bella.”

“Yeah, well…we bumped into each other once.”

My mouth went completely dry, and it occurred to me that I needed to say something profoundly perfect. However, what the fuck could I say to fix this situation? I mean, he heard me refer to him as “Sex-hair.”

“They gave me Ativan,” I explained, “and now I have discharge.”

So much for second impressions…

This story is the only one I can think of that’s made me laugh out loud and cry real tears at the same time. It’s confusing and messy, honest and poignant. BellaFlan has a way with words that cut deep without you even noticing. All the way through, on a first read, it’s like hearing a constant refrain of “Wait, what??” in your head. On second reading, the dark genius shows through. The words, the language, the wit – none of it gets old, no matter how many times you read it. So yes, this is one of my comfort fics. Maybe it’ll be one of yours too?

http://www.fanfiction.net/s/6107100/1/Stigmata-Tomato

~—————————–~

We Come To Life Beneath The Stars by LillyBellis

*Made by famouslyso*

*Made by famouslyso*

We Come To Life Beneath The Stars ~ As Bella Swan starts over with hopes of finding her future, Edward Cullen is hanging on desperately to his past. She’s treading water, and he’s a corporate golden boy. They share an office, but few words…until one night changes everything.

Rated: Fiction M – English – Romance/Drama – Bella & Edward – Chapters: 19 – Words: 168,711 – Reviews: 4,815 – Favs: 5,247 – Follows: 3,541 – Updated: 05-19-11 – Published: 06-16-10 – Status: Complete – id: 6058476

There are two reasons this story made it to my comfort fic list. The first is the finely-wrought exploration of complicated family relationships – the kind of love that leaves you aching as often as it fulfills you:

Sometimes, when my mother talks to me, I sit and watch her mouth. Her full, light pink lips move up and down, opening and closing endlessly and with such rhythmic frequency that she looks like a brown-haired, blue-eyed goldfish. She swims around her small town Washington fishbowl every day, all day, circling the same old scenery no matter which direction she turns in. So, I can’t really begrudge her the excitement she feels when she gets a glimpse of life beyond her tiny, monotonous world.

That’s why on nights like these, when my brother and I are home, we all sit at the dining room table and listen to her ask endless questions about my job, or Emmett’s girlfriend, or why neither one of us loves her enough to visit more often. We answer her dutifully, sprinkling little bits of our lives on the surface of the water for her to devour, and she eats them up with abandon, always waiting impatiently for more. 

The second reason is the other kind of love. Oh, the love that Lillybellis can write! She weaves magic with her words. She takes you into another dimension entirely:

And with my lips close to his so he can feel what I say, I tell him, “No one loves me like you do.”

I’m not just talking about the way he always makes my stomach flip, or my knees feel like jelly. I know how special it is to find someone who grounds you and makes you fly, someone who pushes you and catches you, someone who calms your heart and unravels your body.

He is that someone for me.

Edward’s lips find mine with slow, wonderful brushes and licks, and his fingers slide down my arms, giving me goosebumps as they tickle, making promises to my skin. His breaths are low and shallow, small puffs of air against my cheek, and I wonder if every bit of him feels as alive as I do. I gently tug the hair at the nape of his neck because I know that drives him crazy, and the tips of his fingers trace little circles on the small of my back, because…god, he knows all the little combinations that unlock me and open me up.

Like SaL, this story is incredibly relatable to real life. The things that have happened to Edward and Bella individually are things that happen everywhere, every day. The emotions they experience are the same ones we all go through, all the time. If only we were all as articulate as the author! I’ve said elsewhere, true love isn’t a fairy tale. It’s a commonplace, normal occurrence. The tragedy is in not being able to recognise it, or not learning how to communicate it. Reading stories like this one can only help us learn to recognise love and use it for all its worth. And we are all romantic saps, so we get to love the journey as we read it. What I mean to say is, we are so very lucky to have writers like Lillybellis in our midst!

http://www.fanfiction.net/s/6058476/1/We-Come-to-Life-Beneath-the-Stars

~—————————–~

Thank you, Twific authors, for putting your amazing talents to such generous use. You give us so many permutations of the Edward and Bella tale to keep us cozy and warm, tuck us up in our beds at night (sometimes keeping us up all hours!) and lighting us up in many different ways, IYKWIM (!). And thanks to Rob Attack FFF readers, for providing us the opportunity to celebrate and support our favourite authors. Keep telling us about what you love in the comments section below, and join us next week for our final countdown to summer.

The FicSix

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36 Comments

Filed under Edward A M Cullen, Fan Fiction Friday, Fan Fiction Recs, Robert Pattinson, Twilight, Writing

36 responses to “Countdown to Summer – Part 2

  1. Great fic choices ladies!

    You’ve made me want to re-read Secrets and Lies again Gingerandgreen. I love that story!

    I’ve always heard great things about The Gravity Series Wiltshire Glo, and it’s on my TBR list, but you have sold it to me now and I’m bumping it up. Thanks!

    Happy FanFiction Friday!

    • Hey Cared,
      Drotuno never disappoints! I always feel strangely protective over MercWard even though he’s a tough guy. He has a swoony gentle side!

      Thanks as always to our FicSix Sisters. You girls really are the best.

  2. Good Friday everyone. I read Branching Inward last night, based on Wiltshireglo’s rec, and oh my word, it’s brilliant! So lovely. I’m still swooning!
    Hoping to hear of some other captivating stories today to keep me distracted…

    • Happy FanFic Friday Ladies!

      I’m so thrilled that you enjoyed Branching Inward GingerandGreen… I’m always nervous when I rec something and want everyone to love it as much as I do!

      I’ve always been a tad nervous of Stigmata Tomato, purely because I’m such a wuss, but I’m not sure I can resist now. I’m expecting hand holding and cuddles to get me through!

      Happy reading everyone xo

  3. Hello my lovelies! Happy FFF!

    Great stories Ladies! As GingerandGreen will attest to, we both had Secrets and Lies on our lists when we started preparing for these posts and I am glad I gave way – as G&G’s rec is absolutely brilliant. SaL is one of my very most faves – such a great story with strong characters. Branching Inward is also fabulous. We Come to Life Beneath the Stars is a beautiful read – LillyBellis is such a talented writer.

    There are a few stories on the girls’ list that I haven’t read yet – I still haven’t got to the sequels of The Gravity Series (but looking forward to it) and I am SO ashamed to say I have not read The Diva Diaries yet … I am getting there, I promise! LOL

    I thought I would share a couple of one shot re-reads of mine – I believe I have rec’d these before – but another time can’t hurt, hey?

    Keeping with the theme of KiyaRaven – her one shot Phoenix is one of my most favourite re-reads – I adore this story and it never fails to bring a tear to my eye. http://www.fanfiction.net/s/7640467/1/Phoenix

    My next one shot is by the fabulous IsaKassees – Monday Morning. This story is all about how your first impressions can be wrong. SO wrong!
    http://www.fanfiction.net/s/6209770/1/Monday-morning

    Have a great weekend all! AV xox

  4. Yay, Mercward!!!

    But I still don’t understand the appeal of “Secret and Lies.” I tried to read this story 3 times now and every time I flounced it after a few chapters. From my standards Bella in this story is one of the worst kind a woman.

    • So glad you love MercWard the1andonlymrsedwardcullen!
      I think Bella may just redeem herself in SaL, but thankfully our lovely FanFiction authors create so many great stories there’s always another waiting for us if we don’t get along with one!

      Thanks for stopping by, have a great weekend!

  5. hoodfabulous

    Thanks for another wonderful list of fic recs! When I received the email that y’all posted today, I opened it and started reading. When I saw the Stigmata Tomato review I started doing a little happy dance (well, as close as one gets to doing a happy dance while hiding under the covers in bed from her hubbie reading on the sly). This is one of my fave fics that I haven’t thought of in a long time. Before I knew it I devoured six chapters before I passed out in exhaustion. Honestly, and this may sound slightly disturbing, I completely relate to this Bella, probably more than any Bella I’ve ever read, in that I’ve always avoided serious topics by using dark/inappropriate humor. Thanks ladies for the stroll down memory lane and the recs for a couple of stories I’ve never read. If anyone knows of any other dark humor stories, let me know please ma’ams.

    Hood

  6. Can I just say that you all do a fabulous job with your recs. they are almost as good as the fics you are writing about! Seriously well thought out and very insightful! Thanks so much for your written words and your time and energy! Bravo to you all!!!!

    • Wow! Beans McFiction, what a lovely thing to say. We just want to share the love of the fabulous fics we’re lucky enough to read.

      Hope you find something to tempt you today, see you here next Friday -and maybe you’ve got a favourite you want to share? 😉

      Have a great weekend xo

  7. I love dark comedy too, Hoodfabulous! The tragedy is that many of the dark comedies that stand out in my mind have been pulled, abandoned or the authors appeared to run away from notoriety. Watch this space, I’ll find some for you if I can 😉

    I understand the urge to flounce bad behaviour fics, the1andonlymrsedwardcullen – I’m guilty of sometimes doing the same thing on cheating fics myself – but the beauty of SaL is in the redemption that comes through the pain, regret and hard work both Bella and Edward go through. As I say in my review, neither character is a hero, but they could be anyone you went to school with, the characters are so real. And both of them are equally to blame btw, no hating on just Bella!

    Looking forward to giving you cuddles and holding your hand through Stigmata Tomato, WiltshireGlo – it’s worth it 🙂

  8. ZOMG! You, guys!!! I can’t even. Gingerandgreen, why did you have to make me cry like that?

    Also, Tomato should NOT be a comfort fic. Are you sick in the head ? ;P

    I love love love We Come to Life Beneath the Stars. I think I’ve re-read that at least twice. The Edward she writes is so beautiful and so complicated. And he is so utterly unappealing in the first chapter that the reader finds herself falling almost surprised to fall in love with him. The slow burn of that story makes me insane.

    And now I want to re-read that along with Branching Inward.

    Thank you for your kind words, ginger 🙂 You, too, hoodfabulous!

    Big Love,

    Flanny xo

  9. Deb’s Angel & Gravity series are the best but “Nature of Love” & “An Island In The Sun” are great. Me and my crew have read her series 3 times but I know NOL and AIITS back and forward because I have read it so many times.

  10. I don’t have anything to add, since last week’s comment, but I will say that I adore Diva Diaries.

    It made my top 5 favorites for last year. I fell in love with fan fic again after reading it. For me it’s one of those “perfect” fics, that I hope will get published one day.

    Branching Inward is beautiful and stunning. Your review makes me want to read it again.

    • Awww that’s great Katiebirdie… Diva Diaries really is special, some fics just stay with you. It’s quite an accolade that it renewed your love for fan fic.

      Have a lovely day ~xo

  11. Wow, what an incredible post WiltshireGlo & Gingerandgreen! Thanks for the fabulous reviews; I haven’t read a few of them, including, We Come To Life Beneath The Stars by LillyBellis. *Flagged* That sounds so good, GG!

    Drotuno is a master storyteller. . . I love all her stuff. I agree about MercWard, Wilt! *swoon* I just finished reading her Hard To Love, and I could read it again! lol She is going to write a BPOV for the Fandom for Oklahoma, and I can’t wait to read it.
    http://www.fanfiction.net/s/9261922/1/Hard-to-Love
    summary: I didn’t know how to ask him if I was going to lose the one person that had loved me unconditionally my entire life. Bella Swan had been in every moment of my life since I was seven years old. Eighteen years. She was there for it all, and it wasn’t supposed to end like this. AH/Canon couples. EPOV Rated M

    Have a wonderful weekend, ladies! xoxo

  12. Oh, wait, I have a rec!

    This is one of my comfort fics, which is odd because it’s so high-angst:

    The Give Away Girl by MrsSpaceCowboy
    http://www.fanfiction.net/s/7206314/1/The-Give-Away-Girl
    Honor student Bella Swan has mastered the arts…of manipulating her divorced parents, rolling the perfect joint, and faking an orgasm. Who wouldn’t want to keep a girl like her? An unconventional coming of age tale for Gen Xer Bella. Rated M.
    Rated: Fiction M – English – Romance/Angst – Bella & Edward – Chapters: 32 – Words: 244,025 – Reviews: 2,163 – Favs: 1,810 – Follows: 1,693 – Updated: 12-13-12 – Published: 07-22-11 – Status: Complete – id: 7206314

    Her characterizations are so rich. It’s set in the 90s, and this Bella could have been me. I related to so much of the story, I found myself blubbering like an idiot through most of it. Warning: not for wusses. The angst is crazy; thank jeebus I didn’t read it as a WiP.

  13. Well, here’s something new for Hoodfabulous – a list of darkish comedy fics I haven’t actually read, but that seem to have promise! You’ll all have to tell me what you think:
    http://www.fanfiction.net/s/5038080/1/Type-O-Negative by Quothme
    http://www.fanfiction.net/s/5907317/1/Glitch also by Quothme
    http://www.fanfiction.net/s/5667308/1/Love-in-the-Time-of-Zombies by Raven Jadewolfe
    http://www.fanfiction.net/s/5350096/1/Psychotic-SuperPowered-Vampirism by Pastiche Pen

    Also almost all of BellaFlan’s work, which I have read and thoroughly recommend, is dark humour.

    Enjoy!

  14. ilovealion

    What a truly fantastic post. G&G, SaL is one of my all time favorites, too. And I LOVED her EPOV that chronicled E&Bs unavoidable love and separation. I was very glad that she posted EPOV after BPOV was finished because the reader was able to identify with Bella so completely as she pondered “Why?”

    As I said last week, these fab stories are going to the top of my TBR list. I haven’t read the majority if them.

    You guys did a fabulous job. Glo and G&G make a great team.

    xoxo

  15. eewee333

    Hi ladies! Happy Friday. Thanks for all the great recs. I’ve read a couple of them, but the rest have been on my TBR list for quite a while. I just keep getting distracted with all the other recs you give. And several WIP’s I follow have completed this week, so I’m just going out of my mind here!

    Anyway, my “comfort fics” that I re-read all the time are MOTU, The Office and LolaShoe’s BD trilogy. I know, they’re not posted anymore, but I just love them all and I’m so attached to the characters, what can I say?

    I will make one rec though. If you want to read a really, really, REALLY, OOC, crazy, Bella and Edward…read this:
    http://www.fanfiction.net/s/8957172/1/Substance-Clad-in-Shadows
    Once I started it, I couldn’t stop. Have a wonderful weekend ladies! 🙂

  16. I’m embarrassed to admit that out of all the rec’s, I’ve only read SAL. Please don’t take my fandom card!
    A couple of my comfort fics are Emancipation Proclamation, High Anxiety and Clipped Wings & Inked Armor, (All have been pulled), If you Could Read my Mind-http://www.fanfiction.net/s/5122919/1/If-You-Could-Read-My-Mind, Judging Books http://www.fanfiction.net/s/6324659/1/Judging-Books and Hit by Destiny- http://www.fanfiction.net/s/5463682/1/Hit-By-Destiny. In my opinion, they embody the best of what the fandom has to offer and a few of the stories that pulled me into fanfic so deeply that I don’t know think I’ll ever get out.

    • I’m lost forever in fan fic land with you Christa.
      Judging Books has been on my TBR list forever, it’s getting bumped, thanks for the recs. 😉

    • Hey Christa – I am so pleased to see Hit by Destiny on your list – that was one of my selections for last week 🙂 I too love EP and CW&IA and Judging Books has my favourite of all Savage’s Edwards… I fell for him hard!

      Yep, I don’t think I am getting out of fanfic either – well and truly sucked in – never to come out! AV xox

  17. Pingback: A Cache of What We’re Reading and Completed Recs! | Rob Attack

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