Author has written 25 stories for Teen Titans, Avatar: Last Airbender, Star Wars, Dresden Files, Dungeons and Dragons, and Legend of Korra.
Hello to anyone who might be reading this! I'm MasterGhandalf, aspiring writer, voracious reader, and general lover of high fantasy, science fiction, and superheroes. I hope to write professionally someday, but I'm currently doing a blend of fanfiction and original fiction. My greatest love has always been Lord of the Rings, but as it is so tremendously high-quality I won't touch the Middle-earth mythos with my own writings, though I have plenty of other interests to take care of that.
I haven't been able to write fics a whole lot, lately- grad school takes up a lot of my time, and while my master's thesis isn't as much fun to write as fanfic, it is, alas, much more important to my future.
My fics, as they stand right now:
The Teen Titans Saga: Initially began as a series intending to spotlight one Titan per fic, gradually grew into my own personal "Sixth Season" of the show. Each fic stands on its own, but also includes a couple of ongoing arcs woven through them. Currently Sins of the Father, which wraps up the Slade arc, has been completed most recently- I've just begun work on one more full-length fic in this series tying up the HIVE arc. There's also one one-shot currently in this continuity, and I'll hopefully add a couple of others before I'm through. The fics, in chronological order:
The Abyss Gazes Also: My first fanfic, based on Teen Titans, is set post season-five and tells the story of Raven's struggle with her inner demon. It is the first in a series I am planning based on each member of the Titans in turn. Raven's own demonic nature was a plot point I felt was neglected in the later part of the series in favor of her relationship with her father, so it seeemd the logical next step to take the character. Though the focus is Raven, it also features major roles from Robin, Beast Boy, and Brother Blood, as well as cameos from a lot of other villains. Trigon does not appear directly, though his influence is felt throughout the fic (which is, I think, the best way to handle all-powerful incarnations of evil- call it my Tolkien fanism coming though:) The title comes from the writings of Nietzsche and refers to Raven's eternal struggle against her own darkness. Currently the subject of editing/revision to clean up rough edges and generally imrpove quality of the writing- this is now completed. Because it was my first fic, it's also probably my roughest, but at the same time it has a special place in my heart.
The Man Who Laughs: One-shot Teen Titans fic based on that eternal question- what if the Titans met the Joker? Though I was inspired for the fic by watching the Dark Knight, I quickly decided that Heath Ledger's Joker, awesome as he is, was way too intense to fit the tone of Titans. There are plenty of Jokers to choose from, but I settled on the Mark Hamill Joker from Batman TAS. He's dangerous enough to be a menacing villain, but light enough that he doesn't destroy everything he comes into contact with, so he seemed to work perfectly for what I wanted. I did incorporate parts of the Dark Knight backstory, however- Harvey Dent's fundraiser happened in this universe the same way it did in the movies and Joker briefly refelcts on it, for example. Still, he's 90 percent HamillJoker. This one was a great deal of fun to write, though its events are almost completely self-contained and do not expand to affect the rest of the universe. It's more like a single episode, rather than a long arc. The title comes from that of an old movie, and refers of course to the Joker.
The Art of War: Second in my Titans series, it focuses on Robin as he and the team struggle to prevent General Immortus from attaining world domination. Red X also plays a major role, but as usual with him it can't be pinned down as good or evil. This fic is a lot of fun because I got a chance to use one of the coolest characters on the show (X) while also fleshing out a potentially dangerous villain who really got the short end of the stick (Immortus). The old man didn't get used much in the series, I think, because he was somewhat redundant in his team- the Brotherhood already had one physically frail evil genius, and didn't need another. By himself, I hope to be able to show more depth and menace to the character- and make lots of nice hsitorical references:). The title is one of them, deriving from that of a book by the famous Chinese general Sun Tzu (who was, if you'll recall, one of Immortus's pupils).
Child of the Stars. Poor Starfire. Though I've always preferred Robin and Raven as characters, I felt very bad for Star that she never got a season of her own in the main run of the show. Though this doesn't really make up for it, it did cause me to put her story next in my ongoing Titans series. I hope to delve a bit more seriously into Tamaranean culture in general while developing Starfire and Blackfire as characters individually. I decided to give Blackfire a crew of Tamaranean underlings so they could go toe-to-toe with the Titans realistically, as Blackfire by herself is nowhere near powerful enough to manage it. The title can refer to any of the three central 'characters' of the story- Starfire, Blackfire, or the artifact Blackfire is after.
Luck of the Draw. The core team aren't the only Titans in the world, and the next fic in my Teen Titans series moves away from them to focus on two of the more interesting side characters- Jinx and Kid Flash. The two of them have been having a pretty easy ride as wandering superheroes ever since "Lightspeed", but now things are about to get a lot bumpier as it becomes obvious that someone very powerful is stalking them both. Jinx and her former team are proud graduates of HIVE Academy, but is there more to the HIVE than just a school? In the original comics the answer is a solid "yes", and the same goes for this fic. I hope to delve more into Jinx's origins and the nature of her powers here, as well as plumbing the depths of the HIVE hierarchy. The title is based on Jinx's ability to alter probability.
Abandon Hope, All Ye Who Enter. This is a side-story to my main Titans fic series. It will deal with Raven and some of the fallout from her defeat of Trigon, and will probably be a fairly dark offering. Also expect a role from the Titans East later on. Updates will probably alternate between this and “Sins”- I hope to post at least one new Titans chapter a week from here out. My second Titans fic, after Luck of the Draw, to have an OC as a main villain (though he's based on a concept that's comic-canon, and Trigon will be a definite presence in the story). The title is based on the engraving above the gates of Hell from Dante's Inferno.
Sins of the Father. Well, I originally intended to do stories for Beast Boy and Cyborg in my Titans series (and still hope to at some point), but right now I've decided to focus on what I'd initially envisioned as a sort of "grand finale", tying in the character work and Slade's background scheming from previous fics. This story will have a team focus as they confront their archenemy for the final time, and will also feature a major role from a mystery character who never appeared in the show (comic readers should guess her identity pretty quick, though I changed some aspects of her personality and backstory for this adaptation). Suffice to say, she's on her own side and will be a foil for several characters before all is said and done. The title refers to Slade's role as the "evil father-figure", and also to another detail that comic readers will know, but that I won't spoil for everyone else.
Azula Trilogy: I love redemption stories, and I love smart, powerful villains, but neither are something a lot of fanfics pull off well. Therefore, I resolved to write this trilogy, in which I hoped to do a well-developed Azula redemption arc, while avoiding such pitfalls as OOCness, the Draco in Leather Pants effect, or instantly solving things with romance. Originally started as just one fic (Heart of Fire) before evolving into a trilogy when one story didn't seem enough to pull off what I wanted. The trilogy:
Heart of Fire: Like many people, I'm a lover of great villains, and Avatar gave us one for the ages in Princess Azula. This fic explores what happens to Azula after the war as she struggles to put her mind back together, while crossing blades with a fanatical Fire Nation general determined to realize Sozin's dream at any cost. This is also my first fic to use OCs(General Azun, Ling, Joti) as main characters. Despite the use of the word 'heart' in the title, this isn't a romance fic- I 'ship canon ships, and that's it (so no pairings for Azula, at least not from me:)). Heart here means 'center' or 'essence'. Part one of a trilogy. Note: I'm well aware that this one is a bit rough, as it was my first serious fic of any length. I feel like the trilogy improves substantially with the subsequent stories.
Path of Fire. A continuation of the storyline begun in "Heart of Fire", this story follows Azula's continued journey back towards sanity as she takes up the quest to find her mother after the mysterious murder of her father. With this storyline, one of my main goals was to show that redemption is neither quick nor easy (particularly for someone with Azula's particular set of issues) but also that anyone can find it if they genuinely want to. As this fic starts out, Azula is just at the beginning of this process- she's recognized that her life was a wreck, but feels no moral obligation to do good beyond the fact that it's a different path to try that might not end up with insanity. As to whether she ultimately changes or backslides, though, remains to be seen. The title is based on the fact that Azula spends most of the fic traveling, while continuing the fire theme. Part two of a trilogy.
Soul of Fire. Final story in my Azula Trilogy, this one features the titual princess finally being choosing to make a change for the better, after her epiphany while fighting Wei Ming at the climax of the previous fic. But old habits die hard, and the spirit villain who spent the last two fics hanging around the fringes has now taken center stage. Before she can save the world- and her own soul- Azula is going to have to take a good hard look both at her own darkness and the legacy of destruction left by her family, while teaming up with old enemies who may or may not be ready to forgive her. I'll also finally get to use a lot of the spirit world, a fascinating aspect of the Avatar universe- watch for Azula meeting a fan-favorite spirit later on! I'll admit up front that I'm a sucker for redemption stories, and now comes the time to see if I (and Azula) can pull one off. The title continues the fire theme, and Azula's soul is what's at stake. Part three of a trilogy.
Avatar: Fall of the Fire Empire. An AU idea that hit me pretty suddenly- a world in which Zuko actually succeeded in capturing Aang, thereby enabling the Fire Nation's victory in the war. This story is set a hundred years later, in a world where the rule of the Fire Empire and the insane (but still highly dangerous) Dragon Empress Azula is all the people know. This one is pretty dark, but as I'm an optimist at heart it won't all be doom and gloom:) The cast are almost all OC's, though the prologue is from writings the Earth King did in prison, and Azula, now an old woman, is the Big Bad for most of the series. The title for this one is rather obvious:).
I'd like to thank Atiaran's short story "When All Your Dreams Come True" for the basic idea of Zuko actually capturing Aang during the Season One timeline. Where that fic focused on the immediate ramifications to Zuko's life (and did so in a very vivid and creepy manner, I might add:)) my story looks at the long-term effects on the Avatar world. It also doesn't necessarily follow the same continuity- don't suppose you know a canon character's fate in my verse just because of how Atiaran did it:). Still, a hearty thanks to "When All Your Dreams Come True" for the germ of an idea that I've been having a lot of fun with. Currently being posted in a revised "Special Edition", with commentary!
Destinies Rewritten Book I: Water. This is an exploration of an AU idea largely centered around Iroh, and the direction his life might have taken if Lu Ten hadn't died and Ozai hadn't stolen his throne. Not being forced to do any soul searching, he took the throne and continued his forbears' policies- while not as personally sadistic as Ozai, he's still very driven to bring the world under the rule of a Fire Nation empire- and having already captured Ba Sing Se, he's that much closer to doing it. The most obvious changes are to the Fire Nation characters (Zuko and Azula are a team who actually tolerate, though not quite like, each other in this), we'll see other changes too via the ripple effect on the world. The story will loosely follow the structure of the show, and is intended as a mixture of the familiar and the strange. The title is fairly self-evident, and echoes the show's titling of the seasons. Currently on Chapter 8.
Avatar Character Spotlights: Exactly what it says on the tin- one-shots focusing on individual Avatar characters. So far:
Tools and Masterminds. I confess, I was disappointed in Avatar's Big Bad, Fire Lord Ozai. He simply seemed too brutish- not to mention bland- for the guy who taught Azula everything she knew (though admittedly Mark Hamill's voice acting at least made him menacing, if not terribly interesting). This one-shot fills in a missing scene from "Zuko Alone"- what happened between Ozai, Azulon, and Azula after Zuko ran out while eavesdropping. In doing so, I hoped to create a better sense of Ozai the manipulator, before he became completely drunk on power, and also give a quick peak into the mind of a madman. The title comes from the way Ozai (and later Azula) see people, and the world in general.
Sacrifice. You can probably tell that the Fire Royal Family fascinates me (they're just such a screwed up bunch, not to mention so central to everything that's happening), and this one-shot is my attempt to get into the head of the man who started it all, Fire Lord Sozin. Sozin's an interesting character to me because he's not totally psychotic (like Ozai) nearly totally psychotic (like Azula) or totally ruled by an out-of-control ego (like Zhao)- rather, he claims to want to help the world, even though he comitted the worst atrocity in the show. I wanted to show a few snapshots from Roku's death on showing his descent into madness, and his attempts to rationalize or justify everything he does. After all, I've always thought that a mad idealist is just as dangerous, if not moreso, than a straigt-up monster. The title comes from all the people, places, and things, from Roku on, who were sacrificed on the altar of Sozin's pride and vision. Note: this one ends with a Bible quote. I'm not trying to push Christianity on anyone in or out of universe, but I think that quote sums up Sozin (and his descendants) perfectly.
I, Warrior. During the Star Wars New Jedi Order series, one of my favorite characters was Tahiri Veila. Her spunk, courage, and humor were great fun, and her dual nature post-Conquest was fascinating. Then Legacy of the Force came along, and while I wasn't entirely averse to Tahiri becoming Sith (she admits herself there's darkness in her, after all), the execution was terrible, regressing a smart, strong, complex young woman into an emotionally needy child. My answer? This AU, which departs from canon following The Unifying Force and attempts to recreate Tahiri's characterization as it would flow logically from that point onward, while she teams up with two other Jedi she was close with during the war to fight a new threat. Hopefully I succeed at that, but this is more cathartic than anything. The title is based on the EU novel I, Jedi, and "Warrior" is a term that covers Tahiri's nature as a Jedi and a Yuuzhan Vong, as well as her unconquerable spirit. Complete.
Legacy of the Fire Empire: Sequel to Fall and set a few years after, as a revived Aang must come to terms with his role as the Avatar in the post-Empire world, aided by Kanoda, while new threats and old enemies both stir. I wanted to use this story to wrap up some of the dangling plot threads from the original (particularly Aang's, Shiyan's, and Cheng's) while also shifting the focus to characters other than Jiazin, who got the lion's share of development the last time around. I may or may not end up doing a third, focusing on Tong and Chaiy, if I have time. Currently on hold as I determine if/how to incorporate the new info on spirits and the Avatar from Korra book 2, which doesn't contradict what I had planned explicitly, but still kind of throws a monkey-wrench into things, mostly due to my complete failure to anticipate Raava and Vaatu.
Shadow of the HIVE. This is the conclusion of the HIVE story arc, which will feature Jinx, Kid Flash, the core team, the HIVE Master and HIVE Five, Madame Rouge, and hopefully lots of action. The HIVE Master is one of my favorite OCs- he's got a lot of the same traits that made Slade a dangerous Big Bad, though his underlying motives are quite different- while Jinx is a fun and interesting character to write. She and Cyborg, as the two most prominant former HIVE Academy students, will get the most time here, though this won't turn into a romance with them at all- their former mutual crush will probably be brought up, but I like her better with KF: ). Anyway, this one will probably be my last full-length Titans fic for a while, so I hope to make it big. The title refers both to the looming presence of the HIVE Master, and the academy's lastening effects on Jinx (and to a lesser extent Cyborg). Currently on Chapter 3.
A Dream of Light. Mystical/spiritual races and characters have always fascinated me, and the Kalashtar from Eberron are no exception. This story is intended to be more of an exploration of their culture and conflict with the Dreaming Dark on my part, as seen through the eyes of a Sharn inquisitive who discovers and must come face to face with her Kalashtar heritage. Though I read DnD fiction, I don't actually play the game, so please excuse any glaring breaks of game mechanics here. I agree with those professional writers who say that telling a good story is more important than strict adherence to the rules. :) The title is based on the Kalashtar's continued striving for a better world, phrased in such a way as to suggest dreaming. Currently on Chapter 2. Abandoned because of being near the bottom of my priorities list and fear of screwing up the DnD rules too badly. Now deleted.
Distorted Mirror. Gargoyles was rare among animated shows of its time for placing as strong an emphasis on characterization as action, with even most villains having sympathetic pasts or qualities. This story follows an AU wherein the gargoyle who became Demona in the main timeline is frozen in stone with the rest of the clan, while Goliath remains awake and comes to walk a darker path. I intend to do my best to keep the two in character- even a heroic Demona still has to wrestle with her, er, issues with humans, while an evil Goliath is less genocidal maniac and more Ra's al Ghul-esque Knight Templar. The twist comes from the fact that rather than being a completely separate universe from canon, the two exist side-by-side, and canon Goliath and Demona will come face to face with their own shadow-selves before all is through. The title is a combination of the episode "The Mirror" and a funhouse mirror, suggesting that this is a universe where things are not what we're used to. Currently on Interlude 1. Abandoned because Gargoyles is such a high quality show, and Demona herself such a fascinatingly screwed up, multilayered character, that I decided I'd bitten off more than I could chew. Now deleted.
Avatar: The Children of War. This fic was one that I designed primarily to address the backstories of several of the older-generation characters from Avatar who play a key role in the plot, but hadn't really had this part of their lives touched on in canon. In particular it will focus on the Fire Nation Royal Family, especially Ozai, Ursa, and Iroh, but others as well, including Zhao, Long Feng, and likely more. It will also incorporate backstory elements I came up with for the version of Ursa I used in my Azula Trilogy and "Tools and Masterminds", which I have alluded to but never directly addressed in a fic. I'd initially intended my next "big" Avatar fic to be an exploration of the next Avatar after Aang, but with the announcement of "The Legend of Korra", I've scrapped that idea, preferring not to tread on canon's toes unless I'm doing an explicit AU. The title refers to the central cast as a whole, since they were all born during and shaped by the War. Currently on Chapter 14. Abandoned because The Search comics completely torpedo my Ursa backstory.