By Unfrequented Ways

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Title: By Unfrequented Ways
Author(s): Helen Parkinson
Date(s): 1998
Genre: gen
Fandom: Blake's 7
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By Unfrequented Ways is a Blake's 7 story by Helen Parkinson.

It was first published in 1998 in The Avon Special and later posted online.

Reactions and Reviews

It's four years after Gauda Prime, and Blake has an accident which wipes out his memory, but only some of it. The last thing he remembers is Avon shooting him on Gauda Prime -- and he reacts accordingly. This is an intense story filled with sharp Blake-Avon conflict. Darkness, danger, trust, mistrust, truth, lies and confusion abound as lives are balanced precariously on the edge of a knife... and the knife slips.

Reading a story like this reminds me that I like my different fandoms for different reasons, they all have different flavours; if you tried to write something like this as a Sentinel story, for example, it would simply come across as ludicrous instead of perilously real.

So... what do *you* think? [1]
I adore this story, and had it included in a list of good Avon-Blake gen stories I collaborated on some time back (now on Judith Proctor's website). It manages the incredibly difficult trick of making the bond between them believable while retaining the darkness that they are both capable of, to outsiders *and* each other (Our Heroes are nearly all very, very dangerous people, something that is hard to capture while keeping them on the side of the however-battered angels)...

Can't speak of Sentinel as I've never seen it, but I have seen Stargate and some Star Trek, and can't help thinking that if anyone tried to show the sort of violence, implied/possible violence and sometimes actual cruelty between most of the main characters that is a central staple of B7 (and is *canonical*, given especially that infamous last episode) and *at the same time* showed a deep emotional connection co-existing with the harshness it just wouldn't work. I'm still not sure why it does with Avon and Blake, but it's what gives that last episode its quite incredible power (I still watch the last scene trying to cover my eyes and stuff my fingers in my ears, which is rather difficult when I'm studying it for fanfictional researh purposes), and I think that feeds straight into this story, as well as others.

With B7, especially with stories based after the series ends, the chances are *better* than even that any foreshadowed tragedy will *not* be averted... [2]
I think Helen Parkinson's long story is a sequel to something, possibly her A Second Chance, but I'm not sure as I haven't read that. It's got some good A-B angst. [3]


  1. Kathryn A at Gen Fic Crit, May 2002
  2. Sally M at Gen Fic Crit, May 2002
  3. by Sarah Thompson at Judith Proctor's Blake's 7 site