6th april 2013

3 years, and Nori’s still being a shit to Dwalin. So here, my Nwaliversary redraw of the very first Nwalin art I ever did on the 6th April 2013. That’s when I read my first Nwalin fic and registered both Nori and Nori/Dwalin as a thing out there, fell in love, and proceeded to be into it. Seriously, I’m grateful for this, directly or indirectly most of what is good in my life right now has come from stumbling into this corner of the fandom :’) and thank you all for liking my art and all the things I do with these two 

Here’s the versions from 2013, 2014 and 2015 for those who care to take a look, I’ll post them all together later

MEET & GREET! Submit your meet-and-greet stories to bryanstarsfanpictures@gmail.com. They are posted throughout the week.

I met the man who saved my life April 6th ,2013. It was the best day of my life. He’s so sweet and he made me realize why ’m still alive. People like him will come along in my life, and make me love it. I have never met somebody who makes me feel like he does. I love him so much.

It’s no secret that I spent most of 2013 in Afghanistan.  I’ve talked about it, and I mention it in posts from time to time when it’s relevant.  For most of my tour, it was quiet, boring, the same escort missions over and over.  

But from the beginning, I had this sneaking suspicion that something would happen.  It’s not uncommon for deployments to be quiet.  It happens all the time: people will deploy, and they’ll never see any action – but those people need to compensate and bullshit and lie.  But for some reason, I had a gut feeling that not all of us would make it back.  I talked about it often with friends in my platoon.  We discussed who would cave under pressure.  Who we thought would be able to fire their weapon if need be.

You hope everyone will manage, but you know that one or two people lack the testicular fortitude to do what needs to be done when the time comes.

I just never thought it would happen like this.

On April 6th, 2013, I was sitting in a CROW (Common Remote Operated Weapon) System class for re-certification.  I had just stepped out to get lunch at the DFAC when I heard the explosion.  Explosions were common on the FOB: controlled detonations would happen all throughout the day with no warning (our speaker system didn’t work, ironically, until that day).  So I thought it was nothing.  

I made it back to my tent, and the rest of my platoon was in a frenzy.  Get your gear on.  Hurry up.  Get the trucks ready.  The mission has been moved back.  We need to go.  

No explanation, no reason.  Just move.  So we did.

Our FOB, Apache, sat on the top of a hill outside of Qalat.  Beside us, FOB Davis – a SEAL and SOCOM compound.  Down a mile long stretch of road, in the center of the city itself, was FOB Smart.  My platoon, the platoon I actually belonged to, was on FOB Smart (I had just been transferred for the purpose of the deployment).

None of us were told why we were rolling to Smart.  None of us were told why the mission had been moved back three hours.  But we all knew.

If you’ve never seen what a VBIED can do to someone standing 15 feet away, save yourself the trouble of knowing.  Three people died that day.  Two were people I had spent my weekends with getting drunk and going to bars with before the deployment.  The third was my section sergeant, Staff Sergeant Christopher Ward.  

There was nothing left to pick up of Robles, just bits and pieces.  He had been the closest to the blast.  Santos was killed instantly, too, but reassembling piece of him made identification difficult.  Ward was so badly burned that it was impossible to tell who he was, but he was ‘alive.’  We weren’t told who had been killed then; no one wanted names to interfere with what we had to do then.  So we moved bodies, and we treated what we could.

So the nameless were evacuated back to Apache. 

I remember standing outside of the aid station for hours, asking, “Who is it?  Who is it?  Do you have names yet?  Do you need blood?  I’m not leaving.”

I don’t know how long I waited there before I got answers.  

Another friend, a medic, walked out of the aid station.  I asked again, “Who were the KIA?”

“Santos, Robles, and Ward.”

We’ve all experienced this to lesser degrees.  You ask a question, and you’re given an answer.  However, it doesn’t make sense.  You saw the answer, but it doesn’t click.  Deny, deny, deny.  It’s someone else.  Some name you’ve never heard before.

“No, no, no.  I said "KIA.”“

And he reaffirmed it.

I’m not one for crying.  I don’t let emotion get the best of me, ever.  I just internalize everything: I push it to the side, and I forget about it.  I broke down, I lost it.  I’ve never experienced such a soul-crushing weight on my shoulders before.  And it didn’t get easier, it still hasn’t.

I carried their bodies onto the helicopter.  I carried their caskets onto the C130 at Kandahar.  I carry Ward’s name with me every day.  It doesn’t go away.  It lessens.  The burden becomes lighter, but it never disappears.  Not completely.

It makes you angrier.  It wakes you up an night.  It reminds you that it’s still there, that nothing could have ever changed what happened.  It tells you that you have no control over what happens to the people you know.  But you carry it, regardless, because you don’t want it to happen again.

It has been one year today that I lost three friends, and it’s been a year today that I’ve carried them with me.

Save us all a place in Fiddler’s Green.

anonymous asked:

can you explain to me what was done to eric abidal? cuz I started following Barca after he left and could never really get a clear understanding of what happened

Some history/time frame leading up to what happened:

- In 2007, signed from Lyon after essentially going on strike to force his club, who didn’t want to sell him, to accept Barcelona’s offer.

- Became one of our greatest LBs

- Was diagnosed with a cancerous tumor on his liver and had it removed March 17, 2011

- Returned to the eternal moment that was Carles Puyol handing him the captain’s armband and giving him the UCL trophy to lift at Wembley on May 11, 2011. (And played the full 90 minutes that night)

- Suffered relapse March 15, 2012, received a transplant from his cousin April 10, 2012, began difficult road to recovery.

Then it starts.

- Bartomeu (our current president, then VP at the time under Sandro) said publicly on December 12th, 2012: “The contract renewal of Abidal is already written, and whenever he plays his first comeback game, we will sign it.

- Abi was cleared to train December 18th, and after everything, on April 6th 2013 he played that comeback game. Emotional and unforgettable. Two weeks later, he played his first full 90 minutes since his comeback. So it was supposed to be time to sign that promised “already written contract”.

…But no. The board went back on their word and eventually announced that they would not be offering him a new contract. Their “reason”? A “sporting decision” with implications that the FC Barcelona doctors deemed Abidal unable to play due to medical reasons. A lie. It was about the money. Abi said himself he was in great shape and that doctors were “amazed” by his progress. He was cleared to play by his doctors. And he proved it 90 minutes at a time the next year with Monaco.

One of our biggest examples, a player loved by all, a man who fought for us, and football wise, a leader and a LB/CB who, unlike Rosell claimed, was healthy and cleared to play. They lied to him, to us, and to the players, and then let him go.

Yes, he still would have needed to be replaced eventually, but they could have planned for that. All he wanted, after everything, was to end his career in Barcelona with at least another year, as promised. They could have given him that chance. And without a doubt, they could have handled the entire situation better. But instead, they pushed him out, in tears.

A picture is worth 1000 words…

randomquestionguy  asked:

I recently listened to your Planar Chaos podcast, posted 6th April 2013. In it, you mention cracking the "alternate present" solution, and explicitly bring up the scenario of a time traveler who changes a single moment in the past as an example of something that can cause an "alternate" present. I applaud your foreshadowing.

: )