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Kaleidoscope and Yuletide recs

Er, better late than never, one hopes?

Fandoms: Effluent Engine, Journey to the West, Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH, Coffee Prince, Sultana's Dream, Pacifics, Chak De! India, Saving Face, Capital Scandal, Half World, Detective Di, Red Cliff, 20th Century Boys

[archiveofourown.org profile] sqbr, The key to our future success (N.K. Jemisin, "The Effluent Engine") - I get fanart YAY!!! I love the expression on Jessaline's face and the half-hopeful half-sheepish smile on the man's, the contrast with her dress and the scientific gadgetry in the background. Also, possibly a minor thing, but I am very impressed by the drawing of the glass jar the effluence is in, since drawing glass intimidates me like almost nothing but hands!

[archiveofourown.org profile] mific, In the Willows (N.K. Jemisin, "The Effluent Engine") - MORE fanart YAY!! I love Jessaline's expression and the way one hand is reaching out but not quite, but I really love the portrayal of Eugenie, from the almost sly little smile to the dress and the hair and oh! I am so tired of popular media thinking Victorian hair = prom hair, and I love the center part and the way it wraps around the head and the soft shoulders. Also, glasses!

[archiveofourown.org profile] ryfkah, Soulmates Never Go out of Fashion (Gyeongseong Scandal/Capital Scandal) - Spoilers through episode 3. Bwahahaha! I had not known I had wanted Cha Song Joo and Sun Woo Wan platonic soulmate fic so badly, but this one is perfect! Wan is captured in all his complete nonsensical-ness (violent pink scarf!), as is Cha Song Joo in her somewhat sardonic acceptance, with that very faint bitterness of occupation and colonization that underlies the entire series. Mostly, though, I am just DED OF TEH CUTE.

The boy tilted his head to what was probably meant to be a devastatingly attractive angle. "Don't you think you could fall in love with me? After all, I am the greatest playboy in Seoul." He was nineteen, and he was not, in fact, anything like the greatest playboy in Seoul; the scandal-papers had only just recently begun to take note of his name. Still, one had to admire his ambition.

[archiveofourown.org profile] dhobikikutti, Softness (Chak De! India) - A character study of a character in a movie I haven't seen before, but it's so vivid and detailed that I didn't really need much background.

Komal's laugh is raucous and it makes everyone in the dark cinema hall turn and stare, and during the intermission, when you buy her the big packet of popcorn because you've seen how much she eats, she makes crude remarks about women who don't flush after doing susu in public toilets, and everyone stares at both of you.

[archiveofourown.org profile] starlady, From The Classic of the Three Realms (Hiromi Goto, Half World) - I don't know the canon at all, but I couldn't pass up on a rat-human friendship! I love both characters, and the last bit makes me want to pick up the book.

I rubbed the side of my head against the skin of her neck. Gao Zhen Xi has never asked, but I believe she knows that I have the faculty of human speech not because I am an extraordinary rat (although I am) but because I was once human. The magician who transformed me did so because of politics, and I could not think how to warn my friend that even those who do not care for politics or power must beware of them.

[archiveofourown.org profile] ArisTGD, Sword and Fan and Feathered Jacket (Di Renjie/Detective Dee and the Mystery of the Phantom Flame) - Yay! A story for my favoritest character from the movie. The Di Renjie banter in particular feels right, and I can just see Andy Lau smirking, but mostly, I love the look at Jing'er and her annoyance and disgust and dedication.

Di only smiled at her. "Of course, dancing and swordfighting are two sides of the same coin."

"Of course," she said in rejoinder, "try to bring a sword to a dance or dance through a swordfight and someone will end up bleeding."

Di nodded as though she had said something very wise. "And in both cases, you'll feel as though you have badly overextended a metaphor."

[archiveofourown.org profile] kyuuketsukirui, 20th Century Boy Icons (20th Century Boys) - Yay, colorized manga artwork made into icons! And almost all of them of Kanna!

[archiveofourown.org profile] monanotlisa, 따뜻함 (Coffee Prince) - A really cute wallpaper of Han Gyeol and Eun Chan!

[archiveofourown.org profile] softestbullet, 84 icons (Coffee Prince) - Coffee Prince icons! I love the bright colors and just... awwwww, now I want to rewatch.

[archiveofourown.org profile] lilacsigil, Pacific Navigators ("Pacifics" by Paul Davey - Aside from my lovely presents, this is one of my favorite things to come out of Kaleidoscope. You can read this without knowing any of the canon (linked above), and it reads like good SF origfic. It takes the gorgeous images in the original and runs with them, building an entirely new and different world with politics around immigration and nation and natural disaster and global warming, tiny glimpses of things like a new beauty standard. And oh, the final message!

I really want more of this world, and I wish so much that there were more like this to read in speculative profic spaces.

When the islands finally drowned, Janelle's father's family had been in Australia for seven years; Janelle had been born there. There were rumours of old people staying behind and starving in the wash of salt. Janelle's granddad laughed at the rumours, so Janelle did too.

"Only borders locked us in place, " he told her. "We're navigators."

[archiveofourown.org profile] seekingferret, The Petro Dynamo (N.K. Jemisin, "The Effluent Engine") - I am a total sucker for epistolary fic, and even moreso when it is combined with female POC scientists in a steampunk era, as well as Frankenstein.

But Norbert, please examine my sketches and tell me what you think of my observations. I focused on the capillary structure of the upper right arm, because I've read so much about its beauty and complexity. And also because that arm was the most well preserved part of the cadaver. The other limbs were mostly rotten by the time I got to them.

[archiveofourown.org profile] storiesfortravellers, How Vivian Shing Stole Everything She Wanted (Saving Face) - I really want a movie of this. I can totally see Viv as the wily jewel thief and Wil as the dedicated insurance investigator, and I love how the author managed to fit in bits from canon even in the AU.

Wil stared after her, watching her form move into the distance over several minutes, watching the bright red strip grow smaller as it moved far away, floating softly down like a feather, like a lip, trembling in the ocean wind. She should have called the police, or security, or anyone really. But she just stared, confused and amazed and maybe a little enraged.

And maybe something else too.

[archiveofourown.org profile] redsnake05, Patience, Love, Courage, Tea (Chi Bi/Red Cliff) - Xiao Qiao and Sun Shangxiang friendship fic! Love! There is also Zhuge Liang snarking at basically everyone, which I also like, but mostly I am in it for the female friendship.

Watching Xiao Qiao heat the water slowly, Sun Shangxiang appreciated the care she took. She knew Xiao Qiao lived in this moment, waiting for the water to be perfect. She was unhurried, knowing that the water would come to her if she was patient.

[archiveofourown.org profile] lionpyh, Fifty Years in the Virtuous City (Rokheya Shekhawat Hossein, "Sultana's Dream") - My other favorite out of this challenge, and another one that can be read without knowing the canon (though if you want, the canon is a short story and available online!). I have no words for how much I love this. Female scientists, a feminist utopia in which the author hashes out the details, sly bits of writing, female scientist rivalry, and oh, I just love it so much and wish there was more profic like this. And I want this world to exist SO BADLY. SO MUCH.

Amrita herself should not like to be compared to a flower or a fruit, an animal or a bird, and she turns this problem over sometimes in her mind, what Barnali’s beauty is like: if she solves it, she can forget it, and go on to something else. This is how her mind works: turn the thing over, turn it over, pry, catch at its seam, pry, crack it apart, work the kernel out and pick up the next. After she decides that Barnali’s beauty is like an electric light in glass – the slenderness of the brightening and dimming filament, the clarity and fineness of its casing, the perfected minimalism – she ceases to be distracted, or attracted. Once categorised, the thing is safe.

The Ones Left Behind (Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH) - I really really really wish this were canon.

Two little mice clung to the rats, protected by their solid weight. Two little mice continued on with the rats to freedom. Eight little mice didn’t move quickly enough. Eight little mice were carried backwards through the tunnels, trying desperately to find a foothold and failing.

Mother of Wood Deludes the Monk into Binding the Mind-Ape / Guanyin Puts Her Face in Her Hand (Wu Cheng'en, Journey to the West - The voice! The bits of poetry! Also, the fact that it has been tagged "Taoist innuendo"! This reminds me of reading an older translation of Journey to the West when I was a kid, at least until Guanyin appears. I am also guessing I know who wrote this.

"Yes," said the huntsman, "I was stretching pelts out to dry in the sun, and I accidentally bumped Holder Up of Heaven, and Essential Stone Member fell onto Earthly Female Chamber, entirely covering it up." "Ah, the Earthly Female Chamber -- of course, of course," said Monkey, for he had realized that this man had been alone for a very long time and gone a little bit queer in the head -- an occupational hazard of Taoists, to be sure. "And Earthly Female Chamber," said the huntsman, "is where Treasure of Pearly Seed stays, you see?" "Of course," said Monkey as polite as could be. He now understood the huntsman had in fact gone quite mad from loneliness, and there was nothing for it but to humor him long enough to be polite and then leave.

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