British Isles

Starbucks

It was raining outside, as per usual in the British Isles. Jack sat at the window ledge with a cup of Starbucks in his hand. He loved listening to the rain, the pitter patter was enough to even lull a child to sleep. He took a sip of his coffee and scrunched his face at the oddly bitter taste.

“Aye, sure jeasus this is strong.” He said, clearing his throat.

What it probably needed was cream (I don’t know his preference for coffee but it’s for the story!). Jack got up and walked into the kitchen, with every step he grew dizzy. He made it to the island of the kitchen and put his coffee down. He debated on getting out the coffee cream, but his head hurt as if he had bashed it against a pipe repeatedly. He decided to try and sleep it off, and walked out of the kitchen.

His head surged, making the Irishman grunt with pain. He continued to make his way to his room. Another more powerful wave of pain hit him and forced him onto his knees. He crawled towards the stairs, then another surge of pain hit him, only this time it was from his whole entire body. He could faintly make out that the room was growing. He tried to crawl up the stairs, but then thought that it was a bad idea. He retreated back to the kitchen. The chairs were taller than he was standing. He finally slumped onto the floor, and passed out.

~~~time skip~~~

Signe walked up to Sean’s house, a couple of grocery bags in her arms. She darted under the cover of the balcony (let’s pretend they probably have a balcony) dug her hand into her jacket pocket, searching for her house key. she had recently gone out on a grocery run while Sean recorded his daily videos. She unlocked the door, and walked into the kitchen. She found it odd that the house was silent, whenever Jack was here, it was never quiet.

    “Sean, I’m back!” She called. No response.

    She walked up the stairs and into his office. She couldn’t hear the humming of his computer, but she did hear a tiny squeak as she made her way to the stairwell. She jogged down the stairs, and saw an unmistakable head of neon green hair by the table. She gasped, and darted down the stairs. She looked down at him, shocked.

    “S-s-Sean?” She breathed.

    “Signe! Um, I don’t know how to even begin-well, first off thank you for not crushing me,” he began. Signe’s expression changed, realizing that he could be killed easily. Just one wrong step and he’d be a bloody mess on the floor! Signe lowered her hand, Palm up, and offered Jack a lift up.

    “Aahhh-heh-heh, you know I’m freaking terrified of heights, right?” He said, eyeing his girlfriend’s hand as if it were a venomous snake, ready to strike him.

    “I know, but, I might accidentally step on you and, well, I’d much rather you be on the table at least.” She said, rubbing the back of her neck. Jack sighed and closed his eyes as he stepped on Signe’s hand, and she lifted him to the table. The whole time he was either whining, saying “oh” repeatedly, or just dead silent. She gently poked him with her knuckle (cuz of nails) and he scrambled off. Signe glanced over at the cup of Starbucks and curiously inspected it.

    “Don’t drink that!” Jack yelled, making Signe jump. At least the lid wasn’t open. “I drank that and look at what happened to me!”

    “Well, I guess we should get rid of it then.” She said, walking towards the sink.

    “Um, I’m no scientist, but that seems like a bad idea…” Jack said, yawning.

    It was getting late. Signe left it on the counter and went to scoop Sean up. He didn’t complain, or even question, Signe’s actions and even crawled into her hand. She smiled, and with one hand (because every time she tried to put Jack down he’d complain) tried to make a cup of tea. She took a water bottle cap and filled it with some tea from her own batch, and set Jack down next to it. He instantly began drinking the liquid. Signe smiled, and the two sat together, drinking tea and listening to the rain.

~~~~~~~~~

So, I originally had a kinda feelsy draft for this, but I decided to go with fluff on this one! Also, I wonder if Jack actually knows about this event… anyways, gonna start working on the “Eyes” prompt.

flickr

Blaydon Cemetery, England. by Dave The Drum.

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Minoritized languages moodboard: Manx or Manx Gaelic

Manx (Gaelg or Gailck) is a Celtic language spoken in the Isle of Man. The last native speaker of Manx died in 1974, but the language has been revived and more than 1,800 people claim to speak, read and write Manx today.

For @zimsbitty

Imperfect pages

Bodleian reader Sarah Gilbert happened upon some interesting, imperfect pages when examining a manuscript at the Bodleian Libraries. We asked her to write about the experience.

In the medieval period in Western Europe, books were copied by hand onto specially prepared animal skins. The animals used for this purpose in the British Isles were sheep and cows, and in order to turn their pelts into pages these animals would be killed, their blood would be drained, they would be skinned, and then these skins would be soaked and stretched, scraped and dried, and polished and trimmed to make them into usable pages.

Jesus College MS 37, a copy of Iohannus Diaconus’ Vita Sancti Gregorii, is a manuscript with some very unusual pages. A few of its folios preserve faint traces of their animal past in the form of stained blood vessels.

Such stained vessels are very rare - transparent vein structures can sometimes be seen on a manuscript page like contour lines on a map, but to see the vessels still outlined in blood is much more unusual, and is possibly the result of the animals being bled too slowly after they had been killed.

Making parchment was a skilled job and sometimes imperfect pages were used in medieval books simply because the skins, however flawed, were too precious to waste.

As I was reading Jesus College 37 I was very excited to see such an unusual manuscript phenomenon “in the flesh.”

- Sarah Gilbert, Bodleian reader.

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The Queen Regnant’s of The British Isles, Crowned and Uncrowned

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These Islands - A Portrait of the British Isles 

These Islands published by Cereal takes the reader on a journey across the landscape, both natural and urban, that forms the British Isles, through powerful imagery, prose and poetry.

Explore the peaks of Snowdonia, the shadows of Glen Coe, the rural idylls of the Lake District, and the windswept paths of the Wild Atlantic Way. Walk the historic streets of London, trace the elegant curves of Bath, and climb the gothic spires of Edinburgh. Cross to the Isle of Skye in the north, and sail to the Isles of Scilly in the south.