Log in

No account? Create an account
02 February 2009 @ 11:14 am
Fic: I Had No Idea I Had Been Traveling, by rm and kalichan  
Title: I Had No Idea I Had Been Traveling
Author: rm and kalichan
Rating: explicit (sex), mature (violence) (in first installment only)
Length: series, epic, ~177,000 words
Pairing(s)/Character(s): Jack/Ianto (primarily) some Jack/Rose, Jack/Nine, Ianto/OFCs, Ianto/Lisa, appearances from the team, Gwen, and Ten
Genre/Category: romance, angst, backstory, erudite, genderswap, kink (various), sex, relationship, adventure, character study, time-travel, drama
Warnings: Breathplay, BDSM, D/s
Spoilers: Torchwood series two, Doctor Who series four
Summary: It's not how you die; it's how you live, especially when your life is built of stories. And in the end, all lives are.

Why you should read it: Some fanfic is just entertainment, and that's all it needs or wants to be. Who doesn't enjoy being entertained? Much of fanfic falls into that category, and fandom would disappear without it. But every now and then something that wants to be - that needs to be - bigger comes along.

IHNIIHBT may be entertaining - it will make you laugh aloud, often - but it is anything but just entertainment. It never tries to be just one thing - just a romance, just dark, just humourous, just sexy, just angsty, just earth-shattering - but instead reaches to be the biggest and best thing it can be; and better yet, succeeds. Every paragraph reveals something you never knew about the characters - but wanted to. Every installment makes you laugh and cry as the characters struggle to grow with the pace of their lives. Every sex scene, too, leaves you panting not just with the wicked sexiness, but the poignant, powerful implications and emotions that run through it. The quiet moments are beautifully etched, the loud ones thunderously laid down.

We know so little about Jack and Ianto, in truth. Sketches from canon, hints here and there that give us a little to build on. Some writers expand on it a little, daring to add their own interpretations to the characters, but rm and kalichan blow out the limits and construct fully three-dimensional figures, past and future incredibly tied to the present we know from canon - and the present they show us behind the scenes. The pieces of backstory, some slipped in and some entire installments, are a large part of the beauty of this story.

The best part though, for me, at least, is the journey the characters take. The emotional journey, one of maturing to meet what comes. We touch back to their beginnings, their formations, and drive forward to their ends, and both Jack and Ianto grow in incredibly realistic ways, together and apart. For Jack, life is infinite, and for Ianto, life is short, and inside this riddle of a meeting, their relationship blooms, at times awkwardly, and times painfully, but ever forward.

Technically, IHNIIHBT is superb. The dialogue is astounding, the imagery is beautiful, the use of language is breathtaking. But this isn't a story where you'll spend much time anywhere but deep inside it. Read, savour, enjoy. Stories like these are one in a million.

The first two installments were recced individually: A Strange Fashion of Forsaking, and Dear Captain, Last Night I Slept In Mutiny. The series is now complete. 

1. A Strange Fashion of Forsaking | 2. Dear Captain, Last Night I Slept in Mutiny | 3. To Learn This Holding and the Holding Back | 4.The Most Beautiful Girl in the World | 5. I Imagine You Now in That Other City | 6. Many of My Favorite Things Are Broken | 6.5 Up, Down, Strange, Charm, Truth, Beauty: or, A Child's Guide to Modern Physics | 7. In Our Bedroom After the War | 8. And I Cannot Know How Long She Has Dreamed of All of You [Jack/Nine/Rose] | 9. The Spectacular Catastrophe of Your Endless Childhood [Ianto/OFCs, Ianto/Lisa] | 10. There Are Some Men Who Should Have Mountains To Bear Their Names To Time | 11. Harbour

Authors appreciate your comments! Feel free to let them know if you liked their work.
Mellacita: sadmellacita on February 2nd, 2009 05:21 pm (UTC)
If RTD himself were to ever read this fic, he would abandon ever writing for Torchwood or Doctor Who again. For my part, I am not sure anything can top this interpretation of the characters or the Whoverse at large. Maybe that's hyperbole; right now, I can't say. I am somewhat incoherent after just having finished the final installment.

I should add I didn't even try it at first given the warnings on the first installment. The rec here drove me to give it a go. Thank goodness!

Edited at 2009-02-02 05:22 pm (UTC)
demotudemotu on February 2nd, 2009 05:26 pm (UTC)
The front door is a little narrow - breathplay is not to everyone's taste. I sincerely hope nobody is stymied by that, however, as there is so much more beyond it. (I personally loved the beginning and don't want to underplay it since it is significant to the rest of the story, but still, no one should not read it because of that.)

I am with you on your hyperbole. If I ever read anything better in this - or any - fandom, I will be very surprised.
Mellacitamellacita on February 2nd, 2009 05:43 pm (UTC)
I loved the beginning too, more than I ever thought I might. In the care of a talented writer or two, I enjoy stretching my limits. Operative word there being "talented." :|

I am glad this community exists. I can be something of a snob in what I read, and skimming through the reams of (what I consider to be) sub-par stuff on T_W, jxi, etc., gets a bit wearying.
demotudemotu on February 2nd, 2009 05:49 pm (UTC)
Thanks! Our goal was to provide a smaller list of fic to choose from, if people enjoyed the same things as we do. We've expanded in our membership recently, so hopefully we won't get stale and we'll keep growing.