Anyway, here were my results. "In chapters" means the fic was posted to AO3 in chapters, which generally increases exposure and kudos count. "One-shot" means it was posted all at once (regardless of length). "Backdated" means it was manually given a date earlier than posting, ie, six years before the archive opened.
1. If I Knew Then… by daughtershade – Spike/Xander, 48k (in chapters)
2. Small and scaly by devo79 – Spike/Xander, 27k
3. Just a Counterfeit James Dean by impertinence – Faith/Buffy post-series, 57k (one-shot)
4. Loserville by shrift – Spike/Xander, 16k (backdated one-shot)
5. Piece of Cake by spuffy_luvr – Spke/Buffy all-human AU, 99k (in chapters)
6. Wish You Were Here (Instead of Me) by CristinaK – Buffy+Willow+ensemble gen, 4k (one-shot)
7. Vampire's Kiss by flitterfluttyfly – Spike/Xander urban fantasy AU, 7k (one-shot)
8. Twisting the Harvest by akasakasan – Angel/Xander canon divergence AU, 27k (in chapters)
9. Away from the Numbers by EntreNous – Spike/Xander PWP, 15k (in chapters)
10. Sweet William by LittleMouse – Angel/Spike canon divergence AU, 31k (in chapters)
One of the things about AO3 is that it's very slash-heavy, so it makes sense that Spike/Xander has such a good showing here. I don't know how its actual activity compares to activity for, say, Spike/Buffy, but I feel comfortable saying that Spike/Xander was not five times as popular as Spike/Buffy.
I also am just not interested in hardly any of this. I spent the longest time thinking slash just didn't appeal to me, until I moved on to a new fandom and realized that no, what hadn't appealed to me were Angel and Xander, and there wasn't much slash to be had that didn't include at least one of them! And all-human AUs have always had zero appeal for me.
I think I tried the Faith/Buffy fic a while back but got thrown off by the Faith internal narration; it turns out what I really want for Faith/Buffy fic is Buffy POV. I feel like I already know Faith inside and out, but Buffy has always been more opaque to me.
The gen ensemble fic looks interesting, though, and was posted in 2014. I am very curious to know how a gen one-shot in a dying fandom got that many kudos, so I have that one open in a tab.
Crossposted from Dreamwidth. Comment here or there. ( DW replies)