My favorite TLOU fics
Thanks for showing interest, guys! I’ve kind of clustered them around certain categories, so you can more easily find what you like.
Joel [Because our favorite man is still shrouded in mystery.]
- “Dirt” (T; incomplete): This covers the 20 years between the game’s prologue and the actual start of the game, and is told from Tommy’s point of view. Hands down, one of the best TLOU fanfics I’ve come across yet. Don’t let the “incomplete” status scare you off, there’s already 29 LONG chapters of goodness already posted!
- “Joel, Broken” (T): Joel’s life with Sarah, told in reverse chronological order. I think the author really provides realistic character motivations as she studies what happened between Joel and his ex-wife.
- “no light, no light” (T): Fatherly torture, beautiful writing.
- “Curiosity” (M): Even if you don’t usually like reader inserts, give this one a try – the writing is absolutely beautiful, and everything feels so true to Joel’s character.
Tess [Why is it so damn hard to find good Tess fics? Whatever, let me help you out.]
- “Lights of Endangered Species” (T): Hands down, my favorite Tess fic of all time. Provides a really lovely and realistic backstory to her character.
- “Sketches of Tess in the Outbreak” (M): A really great series of drabbles about Tess, starting from the time of the CBI outbreak in Boston.
Joel/Tess [Because I make no bones about my OTP.]
- “And That Was That” (NR, probably a hard T or mild M): Featuring the sexiest line of dialogue in all of fanfiction. You’ll know it when you see it.
- “Ultraviolence” (M): Takes the “hooker with a heart of gold” trope and spins it out into something that can only be Joel and Tess. Totally beautiful and evocative.
- “once upon a derp” (T): An AU in which Joel and Tess adopt Ellie off of the Boston QZ streets when Ellie is six years old. Lots of fluff, lots of feels.
Joel & Ellie [Mostly feels-tastic father/daughter stuff.]
- “on rusted things that had stopped moving” (NR, probably a T for language): The writing in this is just completely beautiful. I dare you to still be breathing right after you read the last line.
- “landscape” (T): More totally gorgeous writing. The last scene takes my breath away.
- “Hands” (G): Just a really beautiful meditation on Joel and Ellie’s relationship, told through one short scene.
- “in the end was it fireflies or lightning bugs and did it really matter” (G): I think this was written before Left Behind came out, so it diverges from canon in terms of Ellie’s sexuality, but I still think it’s beautiful writing.
- “Flying to Wyoming, Chapter 13: The Feminine Abyss” (M, but this chapter is probably just a T for language): Lots of people have wondered how Ellie deals with her period – so please enjoy Ellie making Joel jimmy open a tampon dispenser. It’s fucking hysterical. (Note: This chapter is part of a much longer Joellie romance. This chapter stands alone and is not romantic at all. Read the rest of the story or not as you will.)
If you really want to cry
- “The Lies We Tell” (M): This destroyed me, the end.
- “we thought to build us houses” (T): Also totally destroyed me. Gorgeous, gorgeous writing.
- “Rest Don’t Come Easy” (NR; probably a T): What if Ellie was never really immune?
Joel/Ellie (Joellie) [-ducks from thrown rocks-]
- “Man of Constant Sorrow” (T): Really wonderful AU featuring Ellie in her 20s, Joel in his 30s, and an intriguing attempt at a cure.
- “No Accounting for Taste” (T): Straight-up AU fluff, where Ellie is Joel’s continuing education/community college professor.
- “I Know, But I Don’t” (T; incomplete): Gorgeous slow-build of a story, featuring Joel and Ellie four years after arriving in Jackson.