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Draco in Azkaban: Two Dark H/D Fic Recs

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plant, Elskuligr
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elskuligr

Draco in Azkaban: Two Dark H/D Fic Recs

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plant, Elskuligr
It's been a while since I last wrote any review, and these days I'm in the mood for darkness...
Both stories have much in common: mood, pairing, style, characterisation, etc.
Neither of them is hugely famous, but they're still relatively well-known so I'm afraid I can't claim I've found hidden gems, but never mind!
Incidentally, the second one inspired me for my fic Better Than Expected, even though the plot is completely different. It certainly gave me a taste for depressing stories showing Harry from Draco's point of view.



Title: Dark Side of Light
Author: Maya
Status: COMPLETE
Length: Very long one-shot (it’s not chaptered, but it’s really quite long)
My opinion: Good
Genre: dark slash
Rating: R (sexual and violent contents)
Pairings: H/D
Spoilers: I guess it was written after Goblet of Fire, but it’s set after the war.
 
Author’s Summary: Maya's attempt at dialogue-only. Post-war, Draco-in-Azkaban, very dark, may be bad for your mental health.
 
Critique:
Let’s face it, I love pretty much everything written by Maya. This is one of her earlier works and not necessarily the most ambitious, so if I had to choose which of her fics is the very best, this wouldn’t be it (it would be Drop Dead Gorgeous!). That being said, it is a very good dark short-story. The plot is quite simple. The war is over, Draco is in Azkaban for his crimes and Harry is desperately lonely because pretty much all the people he cared for are dead. He comes to visit Draco several times: out of curiosity, boredom, desperation perhaps: his motivations are not all that clear at first, but we get a better sense of the situation gradually, when more information is revealed about both characters and their involvements in the war.
The fact that most of the story is made of dialogue between these two characters gives it the peculiar atmosphere of a minimalist play: two characters, one room and a lot of nasty things lurking in the background. The writing is not flawless: the handling of emotions in particular is much less subtle than in Maya’s later works. Still, its darkness is oddly compelling. The unstoppable movement from really bad to perhaps not quite so awful and then suddenly to unthinkable horror is rather enjoyable for those with an inclination for tragedy (in the broad sense of the word).
All in all, if you enjoy depressing dark stories and don’t mind slash, you will love it. If it’s not the case, you should probably stay well away from it, and from the other rec below as well.
 
 
Where to find it: Lasair and Maya’s old website, http://www.lasairandmaya.com/DSOL.html Maya has planned to take all her fics off the internet in the near future (autumn 2008) so it might not stay there forever, not to mention the site is moribund anyway.
 

 
 Title:
As Time Unfolds Us: A Memoir
Author: Agnes Bean
Status: COMPLETE
Length: 14 parts, all visible on the same very long web page.
My opinion: Very Good
Genre: dark slash
Rating: R (sexual and violent contents)
Pairings: H/D
Spoilers: Written after Half-Blood Prince
 
Summary: Basically, Snape and Draco Malfoy help Harry Potter escape from Voldemort and Malfoy ends up being a “guest” at the Order’s Headquarters. He has not turned to the side of light, but he has asked for asylum after fleeing from Voldemort. The author provides no summary, but the incipit is quite telling: “If you are reading this, you probably already know about me. You probably think this is a ploy to entice you with some heartbreaking sob story about all the bad things I went through, to make you realise that I‘m just ‘misunderstood’. It’s not.”
 
Critique:
This is the perfect follow-up from Half-Blood Prince, at least from my admittedly biased point of view. It shows much insight into the characters of Severus Snape and Draco Malfoy, and into where their loyalties lay (indeed, quite a few of the author’s guesses were confirmed by Deathly Hallows). In general, I like the character of Draco Malfoy, but nothing annoys me more than a story trying to pretend he just needs a hug to be nice and happy. The character described here has a part of darkness and is certainly not blameless, but he is not a monster either. You could say the story plays with the distant possibility of redemption before crushing it ruthlessly.
The choice of writing the story as an autobiography proves very successful. The narrator’s hindsight allows him to drop ominous statements here and there about the future, and his restraint let the feelings show without forcing them onto the reader. If there is one thing I’m not too fond of in that story, it’s the slashy passages: they’re not too too long, but they have more explicit details than I usually care to know about. Then again, it’s part of the attraction of the story that you can guess strong and varied emotions behind what could, on the surface, be mistaken as a mere sexual fling.
This story has much in common with the one above and will appeal to the same kind of people: if you love dark stories that leave you gutted, this is for you!
 
 
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