Title: Home Brew by grenegome
Fandom: Dresden Files
Pairing: Dresden/Marcone
Categories: fluff
Length: 3,000 words
Warnings: n/a

While on "vacation" (read: while Hendricks is on vacation), John heads over to Harry's house to kill some time. After some non-specified sexy shenanigans, the boys settle down to dabble in potion brewing. Fluff ensues.

Normally I don't rec fic this short, but I have a real soft spot for in-character Dresden Files stories, especially stories that do a good job of selling the Dresden/Marcone pairing. This author does a brilliant job with both the characters and the relationship, communicating all sorts of nuances in her dialogue, with banter and innuendo and humor (with a bonus cameo of Bob being awesome). Guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

Home Brew
Title: other things the road to hell is paved with by LuciaZephyr
Fandom: Dresden Files
Pairing: Dresden/Marcone
Categories: action, angst, hurt/comfort, drama, AU, pre-slash (at least until the very last bit)
Length: 140,000 words
Warnings: n/a

The first (and thus far only completed) book of The Matter of Chicago series, an AU in which Marcone coerces Harry into signing an extremely sketchy contract during Fool Moon. Through the rest of the events of Full Moon and the events of Grave Peril, Harry comes to grip with his position as Gentleman Johnny's wizard as well as his growing feelings for his boss.

I thought about waiting until this series was finished to rec it as a whole, but as that could literally take years (or, considering my luck with WIP series, never be finished at all) and as this story stands perfectly well on its own, I'm going to rec it as is with the understanding that if the rest of the series holds up as well as this fic, I'll be reccing that down the road.

That said: damn. This is a hugely epic story, with a word count that rivals the combined word count of the two books it's based on and with nearly as much action. Marcone and Dresden are both in character and both of them grow and develop throughout the course of the fic so slowly and naturally that it's barely noticeable until you get to the end and suddenly realize how much they've changed (an inevitable change, and one that stays very true to the canon characters). Their relationship builds equally slowly over course of a year and a half as Dresden gradually adapts to the concept that a) he's working for Marcone and b) that might not actually be the worst thing in the world to ever happen to him. The end result is probably the most leisurely and believable Harry/John pairing I've ever read.

The biggest downside of the story is one that is unfortunately inevitable considering the premise but still makes me sad: Harry and Murphy's friendship doesn't survive the new alliance. That said, I'm hoping that future stories in the series will change this (as well as bring back Thomas, who barely got a cameo). To make up for the lack of Murphy you have Hendricks, who is dramatically more fleshed out than he is in canon and who ends up being surprisingly endearing, and considerably more time spent with the Carpenter family, who are universally awesome.

While this fic is sadly lacking in my favorite guilty pleasure (melodrama), it is a well-written action story that should appeal to anyone who likes the Dresden Files novels.

other things the road to hell is paved with
Title: The Spirit and the Letter series by lightgetsin
Fandom: Dresden Files
Pairing: Harry/Marcone
Categories: genderswap, angst, hurt/comfort
Length: 47,000 words as a series
Warnings: n/a

When Harry pisses off Mab one too many times, his fairy godmother turns him into a woman in retaliation. Johnny Marcone finds this development *very* interesting.

I'm not a huge fan of genderswap fics in general, mainly because one of the reasons why I read slash in the first place is to avoid gender tropes. As such, the fact that I'm reccing this series despite the fact that it's a genderswap fic should tell you just how good it is.

I appreciate that lightgetsin doesn't spend much time in this fic going into the differences between men and women and at no point in the story does Harry turn into a different person just because he got a new set of equipment. He's just as snarky, difficult, and as inexplicably endearing as always; in fact, the only real difference is that the change allows him to do some things that he wouldn't normally allow himself to do, treating his temporary sex change as a time out from life. It's a clever conceit, one that wouldn't work in just any fandom, but which is so perfectly Harry Dresden that I wouldn't be surprised to see it in the books someday.

If you're in the mood for a genderswap full of hormonally induced personality changes and/or a treatise on how men and women are inherently different, this probably isn't the fic for you. However, if you like reading about Harry Dresden, his friends and allies, clever magic, and difficult but ultimately workable semi-romantic relationships, this will be a very satisfying read.

The Spirit and the Letter
A New Covenant
Title: The Dresden Omens by shiplizard
Fandom: Good Omens/Dresden Files
Pairing: Harry/Marcone pre-slash
Categories: humor, hurt/comfort, crossover
Length: 17,900 words
Warnings: one random and rather frustrating POV shift

Apparently Harry Dresden has been designated Heaven's new champion and Hell has sent their most experienced Earth-bound demon to take care of him. Sucks to be Crowley.

Poor, poor Crowley. Seriously, I've rarely seen a character take as much of a beating in a funny fic as Crowley does in his quest to take down Harry Dresden. From the disastrous attempts to create havoc via Molly and Thomas to the epic direct attack on Harry himself, Crowley finds himself in a world of hurt and I spent much of this fic wanting to give him a hug. While laughing the whole time, because shiplizard does a brilliant job of juggling humor and hurt in this fic. A surprisingly plausible and very engaging crossover.

The Dresden Omens
Title: The Most Dangerous Thing by Gehayi
Fandom: Dresden Files
Pairing: Harry/Marcone
Categories: action, angst, supernatural
Length: ~27,700 words
Warnings: n/a

With all of the crap going on in his life, Harry finds himself seeking a quiet place to unwind. As it happens, Marcone picks the same place (for different reasons) and the two become friends. Just when Harry starts to think that maybe that friendship is turning into something more, another Big Bad enters the picture, this time from the least expected direction.

The first time I read this fic I was a bit biased against it because I hated the choice of villain. On the reread, however, I found this fic to be a very solid casefile, with good characterizations (especially Bob, who is hysterical), plenty of cameos from most people in the Dresden universe (Ivy!), scads of introspective epiphanies by Harry, and just enough relationship drama to add a bit of spice. A well-written fic with a bit of mystery and some great characterizations.

The Most Dangerous Thing
Title: Choices by Kethrua
Fandom: Dresden Files
Pairing: Harry Dresden/John Marcone
Categories: angst, bonding, slavery (sort of), AU, hurt/comfort, BDSM (of the Dom/sub variety), favorite
Length: 28,325 words
Warnings: very light dub-con (so light I probably wouldn't have warned for it if the author hadn't done so), extremely vague references to pre-story child molestation

After the moment in Changes where Harry's neck is broken, he ends up selling himself to Marcone for healing rather than to Mab. Of course, after that fight is over, the slavery relationship remains.

You'll notice that I categorized this as a "sort of" slavery fic, which is what most slavery fics I rec tend to be. I love stories in which slavery is something that is not considered welcome by either party involved and thus both parties (especially the dominant one) throw most of their energy into *not* encouraging the master-slave relationship.

Which is exactly what happens here. The bonding spell that ties Harry to Marcone is cleverly written so that Harry stays in character while becoming subtly more submissive over time and Marcone is not happy with the change. The power play between the two of them as a result of this personality shift is quite intriguing and is well drawn out over the course of a year as Harry and Marcone both try to find their footing the relationship.

Fair warning, there are a few grammatical errors and the flashbacks in the story can get confusing at times. Overall, however, this is an entertaining, well-written story that explores some fascinating character interactions.



Recs by Jane Elliot


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