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The Ghosts of Blackthorn Hall by linoresearch [author spotlight]
Word Count: 95,000
Summary: In 1843 Castiel Milton leaves his life of quiet faith and duty to take up employment as tutor to the young ward of one Mr Dean Winchester, at Blackthorn Hall. Set deep among the Yorkshire moors Blackthorn is a place of mysteries – a wild place with an odd history, where faces appear at the windows and mad women laugh in the night. Castiel is drawn to the enigmatic Master of Blackthorn and they form a strong attachment neither of them expected. But there are secrets hidden behind Blackthorns thick stone walls that threaten to destroy their happiness, they are forced to confront the ghosts of their past.
So I know I’m a sucker for AUs but this. Was. Fantastic. VictorianBritish!Destiel: I mean, come on. This is one of those slow-building relationship fics, but you find yourself reading on equally as much for the plot as you are for the schmoop. The characterisations in this are just spot on too, with dean being as unpredictable as ever (the first time he’s mentioned, the writing does scream ‘dick-alert’), and Cas just as socially awkward and outwardly hostile.
Don’t be put off by the opening few paragraphs in this fic; the language at this point is a little excessive and a tad hard to follow if you’re not an avid bronte reader, but please stick with it because it becomes so much more easy to read and understand, with more modernised language later on. It would be such a shame to be deterred from such an amazing piece through the extravagance of the first chapter.
Strangely enough, I actually found it fairly easy to read their voices with British Accents (I am english, but it’s still pretty amazing how easily the writing encompasses a voice for them), although I did struggle a little when picturing Ellen as… well, formally civilised.
The fact that this fic included canon mythology and general supernatural-ness also appealed to me, as it not only made the storyline infinitely more interesting, but it also created much more realism when dealing with the characters. The various different supernatural cliffhangers you’re left with at certain chapters is damn near excruciating, let me tell you.
I also really enjoyed the correct time period attitudes and language choices used within this fic, and how obviously well researched it was. I love a bit of correct history. The only thing which bugged me was the relentless comma splicing, but it is honestly easy to skim over and for the most part, ignore. You really should give this a try.