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Joanne Froggatt AKA Anna Bates on Downton Abbey Season 5: The Healing Will Begin!

Good Mawnin' Kitten America!

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So okay, Punk the Kitten has been acting mopey and depressed and hell if the Soldier knows why.  He’s already managed to make contact with Skye and they’re going to meet up and the Soldier’s pretty worried about that kill order on his kitten because it doesn’t make fucking sense and on top of that where the everliving fuck is Steve?

So the Soldier thinks, finally, that maybe Punk is picking up on his disquiet and he’s got to calm down, somehow.  Right now, they’re both in some motel down the highway in the middle of Fuckitall, Maine.  Bucky doesn’t know it, but the place eerily resembles Bates Motel in Hitchcock’s Psycho.   Despite his ignorance of that particular bit of pop culture, the motel does give him an uneasy feeling, though he’s checked it out and judged that there are no immediate threats. 

Then again, any psychopath might find it difficult to take down the Winter Soldier and Death by Adorable - the Soldier is amused to find out that this has become the codename for his fierce little kitten.   

At least this motel has some decent movies and he settles down to watch Gene Kelly in Singing in the Rain.  He’s slouched down on the bed, Punk curled up on his stomach, having finally come out of the Soldier’s hoodie pocket.  Apparently, the kitten is enjoying the movie too, fluffy tail moving in time to the beat of the music.

"Steve would love this," the Soldier murmurs, absently stroking Punk’s fuzzy blonde head.  "He doesn’t think so, but I think he’s a lot like ol’ Gene here - always dreaming big.  Pegs would be Kathy Selden and I’d be Cosmo - hey, OW."

He levels his best Winter Soldier glare on Punk, who has nipped at his fingers.  And of course, Punk would go for his actual flesh fingers, not the metal ones, vicious little critter that he could be. 

"Okay, so maybe Stevie don’t dance that good.  At least not without me teaching him the steps." He smirks at the kitten, who puffs up.

He’s not an idiot.  He knows animals tend to understand humans better than they let on and apparently, Punk’s no exception.  It’s just that he tends to fill in Punk’s responses with a familiar disconcertingly deep voice in an equally familiar Brooklyn accent coming from a tiny fellow who never did know when to back down from a fight. 

"Oh don’t you look at me like that.  S’God’s honest truth."

"Meow!"  You’re such a jerk. 

"He could be really graceful when he forgets to be self-conscious about things.  Loved teaching him how to dance, how to box, how to move… at least until he started wheezing. Fucking asthma."

"Meow."   Punk passed a paw over his face, oddly looking a bit self-conscious as he tried to groom himself. 

"He was a superstar, just like Gene," the Soldier murmured, stroking down between Punk’s eyes, gently booping him on the nose. 

Good morning!  Good maaaawnin’!  It’s great to wake up late.  Good maawnin’! Good maawnin! To you!

The Soldier found himself singing along as Punk curled around twice on his stomach, settled down and purred. 

- tbc -

Note:   This was totally unplanned for but thunderboltsortofapenny made me do it.  So. Ta-DAH!

I fucking swear...

Can we talk about how this Bite Back trailer (here) mentions Bonnie in one fucking sentence, and then just focuses of Elena fucking Gilbert’s inability to move the fuck on???? I do not care that Elena can literally not pull herself together and I don’t care that she is so hung up on a man that she has resorted to drugging herself to hallucinate her dead boyfriend (that’s my theory anyway, the promo wasn’t exactly clear on what elena was doing). I honestly could not give a solitary fuck.

What I do care about is Bonnie and Damon’s journey in whatever land they have found themselves in. That is what is going to make me watch, not the pity party that Elena is going to be throwing herself until Damon makes it back to her. Because lets be honest, Elena is not waiting on bated breath for Bonnie to return. Can we just move on to the Bamon goodness please and just leave all that unnecessary mess behind?? & could whoever is editing these stupid ass trailers STOP erasing Bonnie from the narrative? 

Side note: the comments on that trailer are giving me life. Everybody is fed up and wanting a change up from this same old, tired ass storyline.

höldumst í hendur, allur heimurinn óskýr: post-rock and modern classical tracks that make me feel a lot (aka another sap mix by 221bees)

Sun - Jónsi / And Precipitation - Motoro Faam / Nuage III - Sylvain Chauveau / Summer Fog - The Album Leaf / Hoppípolla - Sigur Rós / Fragments Call - Motoro Faam / The Gift - Jóhann Jóhannsson / Counting Sheep (Radio Edit) - Sweet Mother Logic / Daniel - Tyler Bates / Reciting the Airships - Eluvium / San Solomon - Balmorhea / Near Light - Ólafur Arnalds / Samskeyti - Sigur Rós

An argument can be made that the yearly snubs in the Emmy nomination process generate more attention (and column space) than the the nods voters get right without having to be nagged. Now all that’s left is to hand out the actual awards on Monday and let the critics and fans have one last round of joy/ranting (joyful ranting?) about the winners and losers.

Lead actress in a drama: Tatiana MaslanyOrphan Black. Don’t get me started. No, really, don’t. Kerri RussellThe Americans. What else does she have to do? Elisabeth MossMad Men. A great season for her (again). Vera FarmigaBates Motel. She’s the reason to watch. Nicole BeharieSleepy Hollow. It’s a crazy show, but watch how steady and good she is. Lucy LiuElementary. Understated — plays serious and comedic equally well.

It’s time for #FridayReads! Here’s what we’ll be working on this weekend:

Petra says, “I try not to rub my ARCs in y’all’s collective nose, but I’VE GOT A COPY OF ANCILLARY SWORD YAAAY!!”

Mama Susan Stamberg is reading The Price of Fame, volume 2 of a Clare Boothe Luce biography.

Code Switch’s Karen Grigsby Bates also has an ARC — hers is of Allyson Hobbs’ A Chosen Exile: A History of Racial Passing in American Life, whichshe says, “takes a new look at the phenomenon, which may cause some rethinking.”

And I’m reading Jo Baker’s Longbourn. How bout you?

-Nicole

Image via randar

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Drabble Fest: Banna A-Z Day 17

***We’re gettin a little racy today ;)***

Day 17 - Quality

John stood at the foot of the bed, and he could hardly wrap his mind around the sight before him. His wife, his Anna, lay before him clad in only one of his dress shirts and that blessed garter around her thigh. He climbed onto the foot of the bed, and made his way towards her; running his hands lightly along the perfection of her toned legs until he reached the garter. He took a moment to observe it; it truly was a quality piece. The lace was delicate, and the light blue color set off perfectly against Anna’s creamy skin. He kissed all around it, making her squirm beneath him until he finally pulled it down her leg with only his teeth.

As much as it pleased him to see the garter on her, it usually ended up being a quality piece lying on their bedroom floor….along with all the rest of their clothing.

- Ultimatum 

He was left there, alone, taking in everything she had just said.

‘We are going to marry.’ she had told him before Jane called.

At first he was apprehensive, he even thought that maybe she had gone mad with all the obstacles that had been thrown at their love but when she explained him the reason why he could only see how right she was.

He wanted to say something. Tell her how much he loved her for being so strong and so fierce. For being there for him always.

He was left there, alone with his thoughts. Yes, he would marry her. He would marry her in that precise moment if he could.

After her ultimatum he knew that she was the only right in his life, and he would make her his wife no matter what would come next. At least she would be his, until his last day on Earth.

A symbol.

Part I:

She didn’t think she’d ever get used to the feeling of the simple band of gold that now took up residence on her left hand. Nor did she want to. She savored the feeling of it as she found herself unable to stop twisting it, feeling the smoothness of it. It was as if she was reminding herself of all that had just transpired in the Ripon registrar’s office, not twenty minutes ago. That this time her dream had come true, it was all very real. They had exchanged the vows she had rehearsed numerous times in her head, long before this dream was ever given any substance in real life. She was Mrs. John Bates. It was all she had wanted for the last seven years, her whole life really, if she was being honest with herself. The road that had led her to Downton and the path that had led him there as well had been, in fact, the same road all along. And if by chance they had gotten sidetracked or took a wrong turn and Downton was not their mutual destination, she had no doubt they would have still found a way to each other. For this was a route planned long before by some greater power, just as she knew she was meant for this man and this man only. As he was for her. 

She sighed in contentment. Propriety be damned she couldn’t keep her gloves on as they rode the bus back to Downton. She had too much pride and excitement in the sight of it to cover it. As a servant jewelry was not a luxury she had an opportunity often to enjoy. Nor was she the type of woman to swoon over such things as she knew other women were. She was much too practical. Besides out of all the jewels in all the world this simple gold band was the most beautiful thing she had ever seen. Far more beautiful than anything she had ever laid out for Lady Mary. The beauty of this ring was held in all the things it represented. This band was a symbol of seven years of yearning, patience, heartbreak, stolen moments, tears and smiles. A symbol of the immense love she had for her new husband. And like the shape of the ring, no beginning, and certainly no end, her love for this man was infinite.

****

Part II:

They knew they had to get back to the house and back to work, but they drew the walk out. Slowly, sauntering back, her hand in the crook of his arm. They whispered the sweet nothings of love to each other and exchanged flirtatious compliments and suggestions. They shared knowing smiles and she just knew they were both walking a bit straighter and prouder during this first walk as husband and wife.  

As they entered the great stone gates of the Abbey, she paused and sighed audibly. He stopped at the sound and turned to her, his face filling with concern as he looked upon her frown. She knew she was being foolish and silly, pouting like a spoiled child, but she couldn’t help it. She was sorry about Miss Swire, truly she was. But for as much as they had discussed keeping their marriage a secret until days after the funeral she hadn’t realized how hard it would be. She looked down at her hands, her right hand refusing to stop twisting and turning the band. “I..I don’t want to take my ring off. I’ve waited so long for this, to be your wife for good and proper. And now we have to hide it just like we’ve been doing for the last seven years. Seven years, John!”

The suddenness of actually addressing him by his first name took her by surprise and silenced her for a moment. She felt almost embarrassed by it, like it was improper. She saw a faint smile graze his lips at the sound it coming off her lips. He looked around and pulled her away from the open gate and along the stone wall. She let herself be led and gathered into his arms. She grasped at his shoulders desperately, needing to feel him as if he would disappear and she would awaken alone at any moment. He shushed her and pulled her away slightly so he could look her in the eye. His heart melted when he saw the ache and desperation in her eyes. She turned away and looked down at her hand, touched the ring then covered it with her right hand protectively. He reached for her hand and slowly brought it up to his lips. “Listen to me Anna.” His voice was soft but stern and she no longer averted his gaze. “Only two things are going to remain the same from now into forever; my overwhelming love and gratitude for you, and this…” he held her left hand up before her eyes. “This ring that you will wear for the rest of our lives as a symbol of that undying love.” He placed another gentle kiss on her banded finger. “We are forever changed now for the better for having pledged our lives to each other today. I know it was far too long coming. And you have to know how hard it is for me to not run through the front doors of the Abbey with you in my arms and telling the world that the grandest woman to walk the earth just made me the happiest man alive. Lord knows it’s how I feel at this moment.” They shared a quiet laugh at the image. “I think Mr. Carson would be far more shocked to see we had used the front door than finding out we’re married, Mr. Bates.” she quipped. As they laughed he brought her back against his chest and she rested her head to hear his heart.

After a moment he spoke, again with seriousness in his voice. “When we enter the servants hall today we will know the truth. And that, my love, is all that matters. Everyone else will come to know our joy in due time, but…” his eyes darkened and a mischievous glint entered them. “Can’t you picture what a delicious secret this could be for us Mrs. Bates?” She considered for a moment and he saw she was trying (poorly) to stop the smile creeping onto her face that would tell him he was right.

She let her thoughts drift to the freedoms being married now offered them and thought, ‘yes this can be a naughty secret for a while indeed.’ She slid her hand up his shoulder and behind his neck bringing him to her in a passionate kiss. They lingered in the moment, tasting each other. As they pulled apart, she caught his eye and solemnly nodded her head. It was time to go in and act as if it was any ordinary Friday. He slid his hand down her arm, she shivered at the contact. He took her hand and began to slide the band off. She had to look away as he did, but she felt his strength and her love. He didn’t disappear with the absence of the ring on her finger. The knowledge of the momentous day didn’t leave her mind. And her love certainly didn’t diminish. He kissed her then softly, lovingly and all too quickly. He placed the ring in her palm and placed it over his heart. They gazed into each others eyes for a long moment before turning and walking in emotional silence up to the great house. They paused once more at the back door, without speaking they gave each other the encouragement they each needed to face the charade that awaited them. As she took in his features, she felt her heart warm over and a bright smile crossed her lips. ‘My husband,’ she thought. She didn’t need the world to know, well for now at least. Countless dreams had come true this afternoon. That was a fact, a glorious reality. “My husband,” she thought again, though this time out loud. The truth in the word was more than enough.

**Part II was something I think we were a little screwed out of seeing in S2. I think it would have been very hard on Anna to remove the ring after waiting and fighting so long to get it. Anyways, it was something that I’ve always wanted to see and if it’s something you had wanted to see as well I hope I gave you a decent image. I do have an idea for part III that I’m hoping will come into being tomorrow. Hope you enjoyed it so far!**

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