Website/link to fic: Index
Fanlore page: umbrella half's fanlore.org wiki page
First DS fic posted: 2007
Full disclosure: umbrella half and I are mutual f'listers. :-)
Style and strengths: umbrella half's writing is full of thoughts moving just below the surface. Fraser yearns but can't say so; Kowalski is physical and often in movement; Duck tamps down his emotions, struggling to find appropriate words. There are vivid descriptions and details that bring the scenes to life, sharp images and moments, and some wonderful turns of phrase. I especially enjoy umbrella half's dialogue, oblique conversations that show so much more than they tell. Things are not always easy or convenient or resolved.
Other DS/C6D activity: umbrella half has also written several Duck/Dan (Wilby Wonderful) snippets and one Billy/OMC Hard Core Logo snippet.
At Last, of Course is a lovely tentative, stop-and-start first time. I love the stark parallels and contrasts in:
He told Ray Tsimshian legends, full of dark ravens and white snow. Ray told him about high school; fluorescent light and rainy days.
and the deliciously tortured dialogue of:
“No, I… I’m sorry, Ray.” Ray mustn’t say it, Fraser thought. “I’ve been distracted lately. I’m sorry if I’ve been, ah… awkward around you.”
Ray nodded, still frowning a little.
“It won’t happen again.” He said, quickly. A lie, and they both knew it. But it plunged them back into the silence, which was, he’d realised, infinitely preferable to the talking. He took a breath. “But, you know, these things tend to take time, Ray.”
“What things?” Ray turned in his seat to look at him.
“Oh, you know…” There was an aching silence. “…defrosting one’s freezer.” He said.
Odd and Counter-Intuitive is a snippet that packs an emotional punch and also has some gorgeous description.
Ray’s long since finished the can of beer. His feet are up on the coffee table and he’s got his hands behind his head, arms jutting out sharply from his body then bending back in again. His shirt is riding up his stomach and Fraser can catch, with the infinite guilt that accompanies it, the sight of his underwear, and the naked skin and soft hair (is it soft? It looks it, it must be…) of Ray’s belly.
In Balance and Warmth (Duck/Dan, Wilby Wonderful), Duck is feeling his way into the relationship, taking time to adjust.
Living with another person isn’t something Duck’s really done before, and he’s not very good at it. In the first few months he constantly worries that he’s being either too clingy or too stand-offish, never quite getting the balance between sharing his home, his time, his life with Dan, and being his own person. He’s nervous, anxious that he doesn’t fuck it all up, because Christ Almighty, he can’t. He mustn’t.
What comes after the characters get together is a stage of relationships often ignored in fanfic (and in the romance genre generally). In Balance and Warmth, the answer's in the title. It's an effort to get there, because people are complicated, but it's so very well worth it.