A Curious Carriage of Crystal and Cold

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Title: A Curious Carriage of Crystal and Cold
Author(s): Etharei
Date(s): 16 December 2011
Length: 114,154 words
Genre: slash
Fandom: X-Men: First Class, X-Men Movieverse
External Links: A Curious Carriage of Crystal and Cold (AO3)
Art for "A Curious Carriage of Crystal and Cold" (AO3)
An Unseen Sea by slanted edges (2012). Illustration of a scene from chapter 6.

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A Curious Carriage of Crystal and Cold is a Charles/Erik AU by Etharei. It was written for the X-Men Big Bang 2011.

Celectis created 20 illustrations for this story. The illustrations show events from the first third of the novel.


"Charles, a miner from a poor village in the countryside, saves the life of Erik Lehnsherr, scion of a successful business family and the richest man on the planet Eisen. Charles is a telepath and somewhat anxious about it, while Erik abstains from relationships because the lights flicker and doors open and electronics vibrate when he gets too excited. Also features a long-suffering sister, a foul-mouthed bodyguard, and a best friend with a heart that is definitely not gold. In which there are princes, spaceships, long journeys, and old secrets uncovered. (An AU sci-fi fairytale)

Recs and Reviews

Illustration by Celectis (2011). The scene is from chapter 2.
  • "Okay. So here's the thing. This fic is over 100k long. That’s like a decent sized novel. I read it all in less than 24 hours because I could. not. stop. Think of Dune but easier to understand and less angsty and then add all the XMFC characters you love (including their powers) and a really amazing plot line and a dash of sexy times and you have this fic. It even has really nice art"[1]
  • "essentially original sff: an X-Men Charles/Erik AU with great Raven, Tony Stark, and Wolverine as well."[2]
  • "There were many things I needed to do today. I did nowhere near as many of them as I should have, because I read this fan novel. Short verdict: truly, truly amazing. It's like Dune, but better! It's like Star of the Guardians, but better! It's brilliantly plotted and wonderfully characterized and truly epic but real space opera. Also Tony Stark kicks ass no matter what 'verse he is in, QED. It reminds me, in the beginning, of Sylvia Engdahl, and by the end of Anne McCaffrey, in all the very best ways, with many more classics of SFF nodded at along the way. Wondrous.
So, you know, go read it immediately."[3]
  • "Massive, epic Charles/Erik space sci-fi AU written for X-Men Big Bang. I've been reading it very slowly since last night because I'm savoring every word, and I'm delighted that I'm only about halfway through, since that means my enjoyment will last that much longer. Seriously, the world-building alone is amazing."[4]
  • "Episches SciFi Space Opera AU mit Wolverine und Stark in Nebenrollen, die prima in dieses XMFC Verse passen. Wenn es etwas gibt, dem ich nicht widerstehen kann, dann sind es Weltraumschlachten und Geheimnisse über die Herkunft der Hauptfiguren, die die Geschicke eines ganzen Sternenreiches beeinflussen können. *guh*"[5]


  1. ^ elegantfeatherduster. Fic Rec: A Curious Carriage of Crystal and Cold, 22 December 2011. (Accessed 22 December 2011)
  2. ^ rivkat. Miscellany and fic prompts, 19 December 2011. (Accessed 22 December 2011)
  3. ^ starlady. Insta-rec!, 16 December 2011 (accessed 23 December 2011)
  4. ^ giandujakiss. I'm not even finished reading but I'm rec-ing it anyway, 17 December 2011 (accessed 23 December 2011)
  5. ^ frogspace. XMFC Rec, 19 December 2011 (accessed 23 December 2011)
    Translation: "Epic SciFi space opera with Wolverine and Stark as minor characters that fit very well into this XMFC 'verse. If there's something I can't resist it's space battles and secrets about the origins of the main characters that can influence the fate of a whole galactic empire."