I'm not going to hit the obvious ones. If you haven't read the Octopus-steals-camera
fic or the Tough Guide to Yuletide
fic yet... you should.
But here's some excellent ones you might have missed:
Title: Fun (For Fun and Profit)
Why it rocks: This was my gift fic, so I suppose I'm pre-disposed to loving it, but you know how you so rarely get exactly what you wanted for Christmas? Well, I did get exactly what I wanted. An excellent fleshing out (heh) of the mercenary character as she investigates whether she is really impervious to fun. The author got the mercenary's voice _exactly_ as I'd expect it to be - scoundrel with a heart of something that might be gold except that she'd sell it if it was. Her interactions with the villagers of Meltwater had me in stitches. I have so much love for this piece that I think it deserves love from everyone else.
Fandom: The Last Unicorn
Title: Growing Together
Why it rocks: This could be a hard fandom, because the voice of the book is so unique - charming and wise and witty without being smug. Also, the story ended just where it should, so where do you go from there? This fic manages to toe the line on both those issues. The voice is everything I could want from a Last Unicorn fic, and the story is the one story I didn't know I still wanted to know. Just damn lovely.
Fandom: Twisted Princess (Disney Fanart)
Title: 待龙纹身的女孩 (Dài lóng wénshēn de nǚhái)
Why it rocks: The Mulan pic is one of my favorites of this fandom, and the fic does not disappoint. Everything about it is <i>guh>/i>-worthy, from Fa Mulan's role in her society, to Li Shang's reactions to her as he comes to recognize her for what she is.
Fandom: Tough Guide to Fantasyland
Title: A Special, Limited-Time Offer
Why it rocks: The Yuletide meta-fic guide has been getting a lot of (well-deserved) love, but don't overlook this one! It takes on the issues of Gritty Fantasy (tm), and it's the kind of funny that is painful because it's true.
Fandom: Ship Series
Title: Chess, Charades, and the Body in the Next Room
Why it rocks: I think Alex and Tia's romance might be one of my favorites of all time, and this is an excellent continuation that explores the issues of her new embodiment during a little mini-adventure that felt very much like an epilogue adventure to the original. Very in-keeping with the tone of the rest of the book, and there's even a cameo from Fred!
Fandom: The Silver Metal Lover
Title: Cut Me Out In Little Stars
Why it rocks: This is the other top candidate for my favorite romance ever. This fic is heartbreakingly good. The author takes us into Silver's head, and while I was hesitant to follow because we never go there in the book, I'm so glad I did. NGL, I cried. If you loved this book... you need to read this story. If you don't know the book... argh... you should probably read the book first, then come back and read this.