Far Across the Stars
Ripley, post-Aliens, with Hicks and Newt, except when she's without them. Probably the best AU I've ever read in this fandom, and it's got some great stuff about how the aliens are used by Weyland-Utani and others.
Her eyes close and something slides sinuously against her calf. Turning, her flamethrower readied, she sees it and does not scream. The tail of the alien slithers back behind it and it approaches her slowly, almost timid. Ripley holds her breath and straightens her back, and her trigger finger relaxes. Opening its mouth, the alien's second head emerges and bares its teeth at her before retreating. It lowers its head and slinks to the side to let her pass.
It's strange to her how easy it is to lift her hand and rest it on top of the alien's head, as if it were a pet, a friend, an ally. It leans into her touch and she breathes in slowly.
"It all comes back to you, doesn't it?" she says.
Archy and Mehitabel
to hell with anything unrefined
A really impressive job of emulating the original, in style and tone; it's effective and delightful.
i am very disappointed
in you boss the whole copy
room has been scrubbed on
account of a swarm of
filthy insects i object
to the use of the word
filthy after all we
are not the ones who
dropped a whole chicken salad
on the floor we were the
ones cleaning it up it was
very tasty i have not had
chicken salad in a long
time i think to make it up
you should drop some more
underneath your desk
mehitabel thinks so too
The Birthday Party
Blackadder kidfic that manages to be simultaneously funny and touching. Most Blackadder fic tries to be another episode, but this one doesn't -- and it works quite well.
"The only reason anyone is nice to her is because they think she'll become queen one day," said a high, nasal voice - fourteen-year-old Lady Caroline, Lizzie thought. "But my mother says she never will be. My mother says she's a bastard and her mother was a slut and a heretic, and when her father dies they'll execute her so she never can be queen."
Lizzie drew in a sharp breath, feeling suddenly hollow, but surely the other girls wouldn't let Lady Caroline say horrible things like that. Any minute now, one of them would tell her to shut her lying face or she'd be executed.
But nobody did.
Mystery Science Theater 3000
A Morning in the Life of a Humble Bot
A behind-the-scenes look at Gypsy, and the canonical explanation that she's scatty because her higher brain functions are mainly tied up in running the satellite and all the systems that, y'know, keep Joel alive.
Nearby space was devoid of any debris of size enough to cause damage in case of collision, and there were no signs that that would change in the near future. Rocket number nine was showing no problems in either function or position. All was well outside the satellite. Well, immediately outside the satellite. Earth itself was another problem, but not exactly her jurisdiction.
Time enough before the real work began to send a quick anonymous message to the mads suggesting that a Richard Basehart movie marathon would be an ideal plan for their ongoing experiment. All right. Maybe three anonymous messages.
Terminator: the Sarah Connor Chronicles
Tell Me How This Ends
It's a future war story, and a hell of one. Lots of little slices of the grim future, and one piece of imagery that may well be the scariest thing posted this Yuletide.
They were silent for a moment, and then Connor said harshly, "This isn't survival any more. It's not even guerilla tactics, I'm telling these kids to go out and make a frontal assault against facilities defended by things that can't die. I send them out there in the full knowledge that most of them won't come back, when I'm not even sure that what I'm telling them to do will actually make a difference. And I'm just supposed to -- keep doing it?"
Martin held his eye. "Yeah. You are."
Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's a Megalomaniac in a Butterfly Suit
With Brock gone and his supply of clones depleted, Dr. Venture needs to safeguard the boys more than ever, especially so he can go to a conference and get drunk and laid. But there's only one person he can turn to: his archenemy. The character voices are *really* good in this, and the dialogue is funny and very strong. It's oddly touching.
"Okay. Well, even though I hate you-" -The Monarch winked back,--"and I do hate you, my god." His hands clenched unconsciously. "Oh, let me enumerate the ways in which I despise you. I would happily feast on your entrails in front of your own disbelieving eyes. I would tie you down and cover you with ants and then have you transported to an area about to experience a severe thunderstorm, so that the panicked rushing about of the ants all over your body caused by the atmospheric disturbance would slowly drive you mad. They do that, you know," he added. "Ants. Whenever it's about to rain. They got in the kitchen of the cocoon once. It was like watching ten thousand tiny Morris dancers suffering from the bends. Anyway, the point is I hate you so, so much. So much that I-"
"Yes, alright, I get it, you hate me a lot," Venture said.
The Monarch blinked, derailed from his conversational derailment. "I do. Ohhhh, how I do. But as a member of the scientific community," he dropped his voice and hissed, "and a married man who feels the need to live vicariously through someone else's sexual conquests, I feel I must support you."
Kima and Bunk, being Kima and Bunk. OK, so maybe Kima's being McNulty a little bit, too. A great little slice of life with strong character voices and good writing.
"The right woman, huh?" Bunk looks at her with his hand on the bottle, but doesn't take a drink. "Now, no offence meant to Beadie, she's a nice lady, but you know what's different about her, different from all the rest of Jimmy's women?"
"No," Kima says. "What's different about her?"
Bunk spits on the ground. "Absolutely nothing," Bunk says. "Absolutely fucking nothing, in everything that matters she's exactly the same as every other woman Jimmy's fucked more than once. She's not different. You know what's different? He's different."