Website/link to fic: Madwoman in the Basement
Fanlore page: Beth H's fanlore.org wiki page
First DS fic posted: 2000
Full disclosure: I don't know Beth other than through random comments and general admiration of her.
Pairings: Fraser/Kowalski, mostly.
Style and strengths: Beth writes with a deliciously light sense of humour and an obvious love of her characters. She revels in the whackiness of due South and makes it seem entirely plausible.
Other DS/C6D activity: None that I know of.
Like A House On Fire, co-written with Kellie Matthews. Fraser and Ray have moved on with their lives post the Quest, but once they're back together they're the old duet.
They headed up the street, settling immediately - instinctively - into the rhythm they'd grown accustomed to in Chicago. Fraser launched into a running commentary about the prevailing theories of the function of free association and its relationship to literary metonymy, but he was barely conscious of the words coming out of his own mouth. Ray's presence had nothing whatsoever to do with his inclination to drive instead of walk. Try as he might, he couldn't remember the last time he'd actually chosen to leave his pool car behind to reach any destination, even somewhere so ridiculously close as Mathilde's.
For God's sake; what must Ray be thinking of him? He took a quick glance in his direction, hoping to ascertain, without being too obvious, just how disappointed his old friend was with the state he'd let himself get into. However, while Ray was looking directly at him - a fact which, in itself, made him feel inexplicably awkward - the expression on his face was neither chastening nor pitying. It was just - happy?
Fraser's monologue tapered off as he tried to determine what might have brought the broad smile to Ray's face. However, this just seemed to increase the size of Ray's smile. His grin grew even wider, then he shook his head and threw his arm around Fraser's shoulders.
"Running out of steam? Don't stop now - not while you're on a roll; I've missed this too much."
He'd missed rambling discourses on language and psychology? Surely that couldn't be what had made Ray look so joyful. He furrowed his brow and inclined his head questioningly.
"Missed you," Ray said. "It's been too long, you know?"
"I do, indeed," he replied, although it surprised him a little to find that just being with him could still make Ray this happy after a two-year hiatus, but he wasn't about to look that particular gift horse in the mouth. He had missed Ray. Just how much he'd missed him was only now beginning to become clear to him. Being with him even for something so mundane as an early evening walk to a café, was bringing him more pleasure than he could remember feeling in . . . well . . . years.
If It Walks Like A Duck. This is a great misunderstanding story. While the boys are hankering for each other, too afraid to say anything, an old friend of Ray's just assumes they are together.
What the hell is she talking about . . . doesn't anybody speak English anymore? "What do you mean poaching on my territory. I've got no territory."
"I mean Benton, you idiot. You think I'm trying to steal your cute little boyfriend? How junior high are you?"
Whatthefuck? I just stand there staring at her, open mouthed, without a coherent thought in my head. My boyfriend? Fraser? My boyfriend? I just keep thinking those same words for what feels like hours, and when I do push some sounds out of my mouth, those are all I can come up with.
"What? He's not all of a sudden?"
I scrub my face with my hands, then look back at her. "He's not my . . . . No."
She gives me this totally disbelieving look, then scowls. "You told me he was your partner; you told me that yourself!"
"Yeah, at work. He's my partner at work. He's a liaison to the police department."
"But you spend all your time together. You've got your arm around him every five minutes. You were wearing his shirt the first day I came into the station. You . . . for God's sake, you live together," she says triumphantly.
Unplanned. They're really just like an old married couple!
"I'll take Kowalski's chair. He's leaving." He looked down at Ray. "Matsuko flagged me down as I was heading out. He says your guy's ready to talk."
"Yeah. Looks like Lo Presti wants to get a deal on the table. Get over there and make it happen, Detective."
"On my way." Ray stood up and held his chair out for Welsh, then slipped his leather jacket on.
Fraser put down his beer. "Would you like me to accompany you?"
Ray placed his hand on Fraser's shoulder. "Nah. Finish your drink. I'll meet you and Dief back at the apartment later. Shouldn't take too long."
Fraser nodded. "I'll see you soon, Ray."
"Yeah, see you soon."
And then Ray leaned down and kissed Fraser on the mouth before heading for the door.