also i need the strip of doom back in my life

Guardian (VII)

Author: kpopfanfictrash

Pairing: You/Jongdae/Baekhyun

Rating: PG

Word Count: 3,210

Summary:  You keep seeing the same guy everywhere you go. In the coffee shop, on the streets, in your philosophy class. It’s getting to the point where you think he’s stalking you - only to realize that maybe there’s something much more mysterious at play here. (AU: Chen is your guardian angel)


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Okay, so, Darcy Lewis is no stranger to your average girl crush. This is the twenty first century, after all, and girls are girls. Which is to say - way more to recommend them, on your average day, than most dudes. If nothing else, they smell better.

Pepper Potts, though? Not a girl. And, Darcy is starting to realise with a sinking feeling that feels a lot like doom, not so much a crush, either.

Darcy has this thing for tracing events. It’s the political scientist in her, maybe. Some shit in your life happens, and you grab the thread and trace it back through the tapestry of your life. She doesn’t need her internship if she’s better at planning her course credits. She doesn’t tase Thor without the internship. She doesn’t get brought into the SHIELD fold without Thor. She doesn’t get hired for the Avengers PR team once SHIELD turns out to be full of Nazis without being with SHIELD in the first place.

She doesn’t meet Pepper without being on that team.

It’s nearly ten at night when she shoulders her way into the older woman’s office, tablet clutched in one hand, armful of baked goods in the other. “Raided a proposal meeting at lunch. I’m like, ninety percent sure no one was fundraising for charity with the cupcakes.”

“I’ll write a check,” Pepper replies absently, not looking up from her own tablet. Her elbows are resting on the desk, fingers threaded through her hair, and - and it’s not an image that should make Darcy want.

“For me? You shouldn’t have.” Really, it’s not dissimilar to dealing with Jane in the middle of Sciencing, except Jane doesn’t make Darcy’s heart skip a beat when she looks up and gives her a tired smile.

“Sorry, Darcy. I zoned out there for a moment.”

“Totally understandable. What with it being closer to midnight than it should be, and all. Have a muffin, I’ve got like, ten.”

“You aren’t my secretary, you know.”

“You make your secretary fetch you baked goods? What is this, the fifties?”

Pepper laughs, soft as her smile and twice as exhausted. She takes a muffin, though, double chocolate. Darcy is pretty sure they both notice the way her gaze lingers too long as Pepper absently licks the frosting off her thumb.

She winces, waiting for the Potts Patented look of careful guardedness, the firm but easy dismissal.

Pepper clears her throat, straightening. She flips the cover over on her tablet, shaking her hair back over her shoulders. “You know what, I think I’m done here. But the cafe in the lobby is still open, if you wanted to get a drink with me.”

“Like a date?” Darcy blurts, and just barely manages to avoid hating herself for it because there’s definitely a charge in the air. She might not be an actual scientist, but she knows chemistry when she feels it, all right?

Pepper’s smile now has all the exhaustion stripped from it, and it lights up the room. “Don’t be silly. I wouldn’t take you to a cafe for our first date.”

The smile is contagious. Darcy feels it creep onto her face, settle in her voice like it belongs there. “Oh, really? So where would you take me?”

Score for Lewis and innuendo, teaming up to win a faint blush across the bridge of Pepper’s nose.

“If you’re free tomorrow at seven, I’ll show you.”

Score for Potts and firing right back. Darcy knows that Pepper has a call with the Australian office at seven tomorrow, because she’s a little over-invested. She also knows that Pepper is a big CEO who can make her own decisions, and also that she herself is in no way unselfish enough to pass this up.

“Hey, barring the Avengers blowing something up, I’m free as a bird.”

They look at each other.

“I’ll clear a back up time,” Pepper suggests, and Darcy laughs right up until the moment the older woman brushes a kiss over her cheek. Except it’s really more the corner of her mouth, and Darcy, usually unable to shut up, momentarily forgets what words are.

“Coffee?” Pepper says brightly, and her body just barely rasps Darcy on her way to the door. One of the cupcakes dies for the cause as Darcy accidentally squeezes it a little too tight.

“You’re a bad woman,” she accuses, catching up.

Pepper doesn’t even need to say anything. That damn smile does it all for her.

original-sadgirl  asked:

Can you name what you think is the "defining moment" for each individual book in the series (like you did with characters)?

Sure!

“My father told everyone my bedding had caught fire, and our maester gave me ointments. Ointments! Gregor got his ointments too. Four years later, they anointed him with the seven oils and he recited his knightly vows and Rhaegar Targaryen tapped him on the shoulder and said, ‘Arise, Ser Gregor.’”

The rasping voice trailed off. He squatted silently before her, a hulking black shape shrouded in the night, hidden from her eyes. Sansa could hear his ragged breathing. She was sad for him, she realized. Somehow, the fear had gone away.

The silence went on and on, so long that she began to grow afraid once more, but she was afraid for him now, not for herself. She found his massive shoulder with her hand. “He was no true knight,” she whispered to him.

AGOT is about learning the rules, whether at King’s Landing, the Wall, or the Dothraki Sea, and IMO no fall-into-knowledge is as piercing and powerful as Sansa’s. While her response to Sandor’s backstory may seem naive on first read, I think that given where these characters and others (especially Davos and Brienne) go in the series, “he was no true knight” is meant as a radical reorganizing principle for a fallen world. That the patriarchy has failed to live up to the ideal of the true knight (or lord, or queen) does not and cannot tarnish that ideal, because it belongs to you, the individual. 

He found himself outside the city, walking through a world without color. Ravens soared through a grey sky on wide black wings, while carrion crows rose from their feasts in furious clouds wherever he set his steps. White maggots burrowed through black corruption. The wolves were grey, and so were the silent sisters; together they stripped the flesh from the fallen. There were corpses strewn all over the tourney fields. The sun was a hot white penny, shining down upon the grey river as it rushed around the charred bones of sunken ships. From the pyres of the dead rose black columns of smoke and white-hot ashes. My work, thought Tyrion Lannister. They died at my command.

And so the titular war of ACOK is encapsulated, in its protagonist’s devastating postscript. Not only does the lack of color intentionally blur the lines between the sides at the Blackwater, the dreamlike tone and the sense that Tyrion is standing somewhat outside the narrative buttresses the thematic links to the rest of the novel. Tyrion could be Theon at Winterfell at this moment, watching it burn; he could be Arya at Harrenhal, hearing the northmen attack Pia; he could be Jon, realizing his brotherhood subsidizes a monster like Craster. War makes monsters of us all. 

“Your Grace,” said Davos, “the cost…”

“I know the cost! Last night, gazing into that hearth, I saw things in the flames as well. I saw a king, a crown of fire on his brows, burning…burning, Davos. His own crown consumed his flesh and turned him into ash. Do you think I need Melisandre to tell me what that means? Or you?” The king moved, so his shadow fell upon King’s Landing. “If Joffrey should die…what is the life of one bastard boy against a kingdom?”

“Everything,” said Davos, softly.

The imagery of dead kings is of course apropos for ASOS, given the fates of Robb, Joffrey, and Balon. Yet there’s also a larger struggle at work here: Stannis and Davos are trying to synthesize an ethical thesis, a lesson to be learned, from the titular storm of swords. Stannis is committing himself to the pure utilitarianism that will doom Shireen come ADOS, but Davos offers an ideal not dissimilar to Sansa’s above: that the individual matters, their worth and potential have to be safeguarded, and otherwise Stannis is “no king at all.” 

Obvious as this is, I gotta go with the title-drop moments in AFFC and ADWD.

Crow’s Eye, you call me. Well, who has a keener eye than the crow? After every battle the crows come in their hundreds and their thousands to feast upon the fallen. A crow can espy death from afar. And I say that all of Westeros is dying. Those who follow me will feast until the end of their days.”

Consider this the flipside to the ACOK quote above: there are those who come to graveyards not to mourn, but to eat. AFFC, as I’ve said many a time, is about death and not getting your shit together. It’s a bitter satire about “squabbling over spoils” at a funeral, whether that funeral is Tywin’s, Lysa’s, Oberyn’s, Balon’s, or the continent’s. It’s about the decay and entropy wrought by the previous three books, and the widespread refusal to truly reckon with it. “All of Westeros is dying”…and so Euron’s time has come. 

After the girl was gone, the old knight peeled back the coverlet for one last look at Quentyn Martell’s face, or what remained of it. So much of the prince’s flesh had sloughed away that he could see the skull beneath. His eyes were pools of pus. He should have stayed in Dorne. He should have stayed a frog. Not all men are meant to dance with dragons.

ADWD is about failure in a more general sense, and how it plays into identity and our expectations of narrative. Quent’s story has all the trappings and beats of a Hero’s Journey, but GRRM leeched out all the triumph and excitement and growth and replaced them with horror and humiliation and ultimately death. He’s up to similar tricks in the rest of the story: Jon and Dany’s profiles-in-leadership make them miserable and end in them abandoning their posts; the fandom desire to see Theon and Cersei punished is thrown back in our collective face; Tyrion refuses to make us laugh. 

“Will Graham was not a suitable substitute for therapy.”

The fact that Hannibal, unprompted, compares his relationship with Will to his therapy sessions with Bedelia is very revealing imo. It makes sense when you consider that until Will showed up, Bedelia was the most important person in Hannibal’s life.

She was the closest thing Hannibal had to a perceived equal and confidant he could be something adjacent to truthful with (he had leverage over her after she killed Zachary Quinto & she had the power of a psychiatrist over a patient, hence a relatively safe balance where Hannibal could reveal glimpses through his person suit to a trustworthy guide), and he was emotionally dependent on her because of that relationship. We see this in the blatant Franklyn parallels (”I am a source of stability and clarity, Franklyn, I’m not your friend.” // “You are my patient and my colleague, not my friend.”), we see it when she mentions his refusal to accept her referral to another psychiatrist, and we really, really see it when she walks out the door in Sakizuke.

Right after Bedelia says “please don’t come to my home again,” he says, unprompted, “I’m resuming Will Graham’s therapy.” Like, his desperation for someone to talk to is so tangible it’s almost comedic. When Bedelia walks out, she leaves a huge hole in his life that he needs to fill.

When Will returns to Hannibal’s life he doesn’t just replace Bedelia, he obliterates her. He sees and knows Hannibal far better than she ever has, he encourages Hannibal to talk freely with him in a way he’s never done with anyone (at least, no one who hasn’t been subsequently killed like Abel and Tobias), and he offers a much, much greater emotional connection.

In fact I’d go so far as to say that the moment that really doomed Hannibal and made it clear that he was not going to be able to extricate himself from Will was Su-Zakana’s “Don’t lie to me.” It strips Hannibal of his person suit defense. Being seen and known makes him incredibly vulnerable because it’s what he craves, and Will uses that to gain his absolute trust and manipulate him.

In season 2, Will may technically be a patient, but he is a patient who is fully aware of Hannibal and Hannibal’s intentions, and, as the show likes to remind us, persuasion works best when the subject is unaware. Now Will is the manipulator and persuador with hidden intentions and Hannibal is the unaware subject, caught in a scheme. The show even offers a nice ice fishing metaphor to explain it and show that this is all intentional on Will’s part.

Will is deliberately coaxing Hannibal into emotional dependency because he is very aware of how desperate Hannibal is to have a friend who genuinely sees and understands him. “You’re as alone as I am, and we’re both alone without each other.” Hannibal has tried to alienate Will, but Will has successfully alienated Hannibal from Jack and, by Tome-Wan, Alana as well, while regaining their trust himself. And their patient/therapist conversations are now charged with truth on Hannibal’s side too - the lure of being able to reveal more of himself than he had even to Bedelia is irresistable to him.

Like, by the end of Tome-Wan, Will’s plan has devolved from manipulating Hannibal into doing something nefarious to Mason so he can arrest him, to letting that fall by the wayside in favour of straight up just telling Hannibal to confess to Jack, and it’s poised to work before Freddie’s hairspray ruins everything. Hannibal’s trust in Will is absolute.

Hannibal’s feeling of betrayal in Mizumono is very similar to Will’s in Savoureux imo - both manipulated and used by someone they truly trusted, believed in, and relied upon. Will is obviously justified because he’s trying to stop a cannibal serial killer while Hannibal was doing villain shit, but yk, the general circumstances are pretty similar, encephalitis and degrees of villainy vs noble intent notwithstanding.

So in Antipasto when Hannibal tells Bedelia that Will “was not a suitable substitute for therapy,“ what he’s saying is that Will usurped Bedelia’s role in his life of confidant and emotional support, of seer and knower, and he was incredibly unsuitable because he did it with devastating effectiveness, leaving Hannibal no other support to fall back on or defense from the emotional onslaught of being known and seen.

In a way, by taking Bedelia’s place, Will was granted some of the power Bedelia was granted as Hannibal’s therapist, despite not having the credentials. Will is the one with the upper hand in season 2, with secrets and hidden motives and the intent and power to manipulate as he allows and encourages Hannibal to bare his soul - which Hannibal bitterly acknowledges after the bloodbath.

(s/o to this post for also saying awesome things about a similar topic and making me say screw it i’ll just post this thing that’s been sititng in my drafts now too and make it a will + bedelia day in the meta tag)

I’m going to tell you a story. This is a story about a world where the true nature of man was perverted by an insidious threat. Woman, using her feminine wiles, caused man to stray from the course, guiding evolution away from the natural order of things in order to sap humanity’s vital energies (man’s virility) by domesticating them, turning them into cattle. (Feminized) civilization is a menace which must be destroyed, starting at the root of its power: women wearing clothes.

If this sounds like a ridiculous MRA misogynist spiel, it is no coincidence. What I have described to you is the premise of Kill La Kill, a Studio Trigger production which was in many ways touted as a spiritual sequel to Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, as well as owing a significant debt (in a perverse sort of way) to Revolutionary Girl Utena.

If you have not watched Kill La Kill: don’t. It’s a bad show and what redeeming factors exist are very much outweighed by the show’s crushing and pervasive misogyny. Trigger warnings for explicit discussion of child sexual abuse and rape in all that follows.

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PW Day One : “having each other’s back”

Yo-ho-ho, everyone, and welcome to my first contribution to 2016′s Pokeshipping Week! I was really anxious about not being able to take part so I’m proud to present one of the four fics I wrote for this event!

I chose one of the optional themes because I wasn’t really feeling the original, designated one (”Alola”). I hope you’ll all still give my fic a read. 

This is an AU version of Misty rescuing Ash during the second movie - Pokeshipping: The Movie, as I like to call it, lol - wherein she uses CPR to bring him back after getting him to shore (inspired by my being CPR-certified for work). I remember hearing awhile back that this was originally supposed to be how the movie played out, but the director at the time felt it would be taken as some sort of “hint” if Misty “kissed” Ash when performing mouth-to-mouth.

All that being said, I went with it anyway, but I made sure that no normal, romantic feelings or reactions took place until after Ash was conscious again. There’s also a quick nod to Team Rocket’s sacrifice (just Ash bothering to ask about them) since, after they decided to let go of Lugia in the film, they ended up basically forgotten and that… sucks.

Anyway, on to the read!

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Some thoughts on running and depression

The year after I graduated from college, I decided to start jogging. I was living in Waltham, MA at the time, and still working at the school I’d just left; I had two degrees (English Lit, Theater), but not much in the way of job prospects, apart from the moderate library experience I’d built up while still a student. So I was stuck–not sure of where I was going, not sure what I wanted out of life, but taking a kind of idiot’s pride in my seat-of-the-pants approach to the future. Things would work out, I was sure. I was a brilliant writer, a terrific actor, a fantastic singer. Sooner or later, something would click.

But until that happened, I needed something to do. So: jogging. I’d put on weight in school, like nearly everyone does, and since I’d never been much for physical activity, that weight hadn’t gone away. Eating healthier would’ve been a smart move, but that required discipline, restraint, and patience, and I didn’t want to just be more sensible. I wanted to take action. I wanted to face things head on and deal with them in one fell decisive swoop. I wanted to get this shit done.

One afternoon, I left home and went for a walk up the street, and decided, on the spur of the moment, to start running. I knew I wouldn’t last long (asthma, and I was horribly out of shape), but it was a start. And if I started, didn’t that mean I’d eventually get somewhere? I was determined and smart and all those other genius things I already mentioned. Surely I could do this. Surely all it took was the will to succeed.

I don’t think I made it a full minute. Maybe half a minute. Maybe less. And when I finished, I was wheezing and panting and sweating, and I felt like someone had wrapped rubber bands around my chest, and every step I took was just pulling me back to where I didn’t want to be. 

I didn’t jog again for six years.

*                               *                                 *                                *

Here’s the thing–I don’t know how long I’ve been bipolar. Or manic depressive, or crazy, or whatever the hell you want to call it. I don’t exactly know how this works. Is it genetic? Is it environmental? And if I’d known when I was in high school, would I have had an easier time of things? I don’t know. Probably not, but I don’t know.

Here’s what I do know: Junior year of college. One afternoon in late fall, I was sitting in my dorm room being sad, and trying not to think about how I was going to have to go find food soon, and do homework, and then get up tomorrow and do that again, and again, and again, and again, and again, and again, and again, and again, and again, and again. Eventually I’d die. The possibility offered moderate relief.

I heard a toilet flush on a different floor, and a door closed somewhere, and I thought: “How long have I been sad?" 

It’s an odd thing, to recognize depression. It kind of always feels like bullshit. You start bleeding, you see a doctor; your car breaks down, you see a mechanic. But there are no easy external symptoms with depression. The experience is entirely internal, which means it relies on your ability to assess your own feelings as accurately as possible. That’s not an easy task, especially not when your internal calibration is already severely out of whack. And then there’s that nagging sense of falseness; of being weak and selfish for not just getting over whatever’s bothering you. When I was a kid, I used to feel guilty when my mom kept me home from school for being sick, because I wasn’t sure I was sick enough. This was like that, only worse.

But I had good friends, one in particular, and she said i should see someone, so I did. I went to a therapist at school. I don’t think my therapist was very good at his job, but he acknowledged I was depressed, and that was a relief. Having a nominal professional confirm that you aren’t just a lazy nitwit is a good thing. I talked, and he listened, which helped. I worked through some very basic personal stuff with him, talked about my history, and I thought I was cured. Then a week later, I decided I was in love with someone who didn’t love me, and spent the next six months convinced everything would be fine. Not just fine–spectacularly fine, in contradiction of all available evidence. There were times when I didn’t think it would be fine, and when that happened, I hurt so much I couldn’t move. I talked about nothing else. I wrote a four hundred page journal  that was just me endlessly circling around the same small handful of ideas. I was in love, I was a hero, it was would all be magnificent. I was in love, I was garbage, and everything was doomed. This wasn’t endless gray fields; it was the whole world on fire and I was running through the flames, and sometimes i was laughing, and sometimes i wasn’t. My depression hadn’t gone away. It had simply transmogrified.

*                        *                         *                          *                     *

It’s very complicated, being human. There are always these pieces you miss, and whose absence only seems obvious in retrospect. When I tried to go jogging, I couldn’t run very far because I was out of shape, and willpower alone wasn’t enough to fix that. When I tried to deal with my depression with just a few free therapy sessions and some misplaced infatuation, I made things worse, because there was something out of balance in my brain, and saying things like, "I hate myself and that’s wrong” wasn’t enough.

The first few years after college, I settled into a routine. Fall: slow creeping blues. Winter: black pit of despair. Spring: despair edges away. Summer: so happy that I’m angry half the time and I just! Want! To do! Everything! I moved back home to Maine. Got a job, found an apartment, bought a car, and kept it together. Barely. A few months into my life as an adult, and I was jittering and snapping and close to losing my job.

I got a new therapist’s name from a co-worker, I made an appointment; I missed the first appointment because of traffic, and because I think I was sort of terrified. But I made the second, and I remember sitting there being about as desperate as a person can be, because I knew I was broken, and I knew it was my fault, and I knew I was worthless. I was wrong, in this fundamental, irrevocable way, and I was going to lose my job, and nobody would care because I deserved it. I deserved to lose everything because I was awful. I’ve never been able to describe exactly how that self-loathing feels, because it’s simultaneously the most intense and most undramatic sensation possible. It’s a core element of who I am, and I suspect it always will be. Somewhere in my mind, there lives a whiny, enraged 13 year-old boy with horrible acne, hideously large lips, great goggling eyes, a voice like a drunken toad, and a need to be loved that’s so desperate it comes off of him in visible waves, like the stink lines you see around Pig Pen in Peanuts comic strips.

My new therapist said he thought I might be bipolar, and that started a whole thing. Again with the relief, and the temporary excitement that I had a condition with a name that could be cured, and it was time to make new appointments, first with my doctor, then with a licensed psychiatrist. You keep telling the same story. You talk about the bad feelings, and you talk about the insanely good ones–the times when you feel so amazing, so perfect, so pristine that you can do no wrong. You realize that everything you have ever felt is a potential suspect in an on-going crime. You wonder if you’re shaping the narrative to fit expectations. Maybe you’re lying because bipolar is a noun, and you’ve always wanted to be a noun that wasn’t “shit.” Again: everything is suspect.

I got on meds. I even took an anti-psychotic for a while to help deal with my night-terrors. Everything become relatively stable again. Then my psychiatrist left my health-care plan, and I stayed on the same level of lithium for the next three years, and things got a bit weird.

Around this time, I also learned about interval training. Interval training is, for want of a better word, the best. Just the goddamn best. Instead of just trying to run as far as you can without stopping, there’s a system of short, manageable segments which slowly build into larger ones, until finally you’re just doing one big segment with no trouble at all. I found a jogging schedule online designed to get someone who was out-of-shape (ie, me) from not being able to run at all, to being able to run for 30 minutes straight, in about eight weeks. This seemed too good to be true. The idea of being actually able to jog for half an hour at a time sounded so improbable as to border on mythical; I might as well pull swords out of stones, or turn into a goat. But I did it. I followed the schedule, and some weeks it really sucked and some weeks it didn’t. I had to repeat at least one week for sure. In the end, though, I got up to the half hour, and it wasn’t really anything at all. It wasn’t heroic or remarkable. It was a practical, solid thing, and I was proud of myself.

Then, after a couple months of this, I stopped.

This is frustrating, because I’m trying to use all of this anecdotal evidence to make a point, but I honestly can’t remember why I stopped. I think it might have been the change in weather. It’s easy to jog in the summer, if you’re willing to put up with the heat, but the winter requires serious planning, and I suspect my system couldn’t withstand working around a snowstorm. I wanted to keep going, but when the days got shorter and the afternoons colder, wanting wasn’t enough. I had my meds, but I still get depressed, and I still let things go.

Which fits in with the depression, or the bipolar, or hell, any serious mental problem: you build structures in your life to keep you safe, to make you feel like more than just an organism that reacts–to make you feel human. And then one morning you wake up and the sobbing in your gut is back, and the structures collapse. The basic actions you’re supposed to do as a person fall apart, because everything you have is focused on just making through this minute, and this minute, and this minute. You aren’t even really sure you want to make it through all those minutes, but force of habit kicks in, and you survive, and the cost of the survival is the sacrifice of all the parts of your life that used to keep you sane. You burn them for warmth.

So maybe it was depression, maybe it was laziness, maybe it was whatever. I stopped jogging. And I kept putting off finding a new psychiatrist. I used my doctor to get refills on my lithium, making up lies about how the search was on-going, and I tried to just live my life, and I accomplished little else. My writing was shit. My social life was slightly better. I was alone, and I was numb and mildly irritated about everything, All my ambitions were drowning, and fuck it, that’s life, y'know. Stop hoping for more.

Finally, my doctor decided he wasn’t comfortable refilling a prescription he wasn’t qualified to prescribe, so I had no choice. I made some calls, and I found a new psychiatrist, and he was fine. We never entirely saw eye to eye, but he was smart and decent to me, and when we talked about my meds, he said, in effect, “Whoa, that’s a bit high.” So we backed off on my lithium and everything changed.

I’m not exaggerating. Maybe it was a coincidence, but in the space of three months (I was 28), I gave up on the collectible card game I’d been sinking my money into, I picked up jogging again, I finally got a second job (at a movie theater), and I started a novel that I finished in a little over a month. Part of this was because it was the summer, and I always find it easy to get things done in the summer. Part of it may have just been that the time was right for me to get shit done. But I’m convinced that part of it was that I’d been taking too much lithium. The chemicals weren’t properly balanced. That fucks up your sense of self, that a succession of small pills can fundamentally change your outlook on life. But at least you have options.

I’ve never been sure I should write a post about depression.There’s something so fundamentally uninteresting about the condition that any attempt I make to describe it falls short. I can throw words out all morning, and still not capture the idiot simplicity of the experience. It’s a nothing. In order to live life, there’s a glue you need to hold yourself together. The fundamental assumption of your own worthiness; the invisible faith that when you take a step, the ground will always be there. It doesn’t matter if these things are true: you need to believe in them regardless. As someone with bipolar, there are days when I think I shine so brightly that I could light the world, and there are days when I’m a black hole, and both extremes serve to erode what little trust I have in my impressions. I can’t know where I stand if I can’t see anything.

I got my meds right seven years ago, but I still do stupid shit more than I should, and I still have awful mood swings. Last winter was maybe the worst I’ve ever gone through, although it’s hard to trust the memory when it comes to “worst.” Sooner or later, you learn that mental illness isn’t a Get Out Of Bullshit Free card. Life is hard for everybody. You don’t get fixed. You don’t ever get fixed. We are not problems that can be solved. To be human and conscious is to exist as an on-going process, and that process is impossible to precisely calibrate or control. What makes it beautiful is what makes it awful, and there’s no getting past that. It’s just what happens now. And what happens now. And what happens now.

But: I said I started jogging again when I was 28, and I am still jogging. I run 12 miles a week, every week, rain or shine, snow or not snow. I go to a gym in the winter, and that always terrified me but I do it anyway, and it’s fine. Sometimes I begrudge the time it takes, and sometimes I’m frustrated that I’m still not in great shape. But I keep going. I don’t even really take pride in it anymore. It’s just something I do. I write, and I work, and I slowly, patiently make friends. I try to build a world, piece by piece, and I ignore the fear that if anything goes wrong, I could lose it all. I take comfort in knowing I’ve done this before, and, if I need to, I can do it again.

From time to time, I think about what it was like, standing on the sidewalk bent over, sweaty and stupid and nearly but not quite about to throw up. And I think about what it was like to sit in my dorm room and stare at the wall, with an emptiness in my chest no ocean could fill. Some things never leave you. But minute by minute, interval by interval, you learn to live with them.

miauuududllllomfg  asked:

patiently waiting for your Analysis of aaood3 part 8 I always come to your blog right after watching the video

Anonymous said:

Sasha this new ep of AAOOD is wild, the villain (aka 1DHQ) saying “i’ll just publish an article online saying you’ve broken up” made my jaw drop i love this, i can’t wait for your analysis xx

Anonymous said:

so part 8, the children are clearly those fans that take official narrative at face value which also equals their belief in santa, can’t wait for your analysis

Anonymous said:

I look forward to your analysis almost more than I look forward to the cartoons! It’s getting more and more obvious!

Anonymous said:

Sasha aaood3 just keeps getting shadier Please do a part 8 <3

Anonymous said:

Your headcanon for an is so great can’t wait for part 8 .

Sorry for the delay, friends. I was bout 1/3 done when I clicked the wrong thing and lost all my work. So I had to star over, grrrr. Then I had a final. Then I had to go to work.  Also, not using the tumblr ‘read more’ since it’s causing the post to disappear for people on mobile. Apologies if you’re not interested in this, scroll past quickly! LOL

Ok, so part 8 opens with Liam still being distracted by the fans on social media.

Liam’s figuring it out. He’s getting his priorities sorted.

The entitled and demanding fans don’t care, though.

Liam is trying to set some boundaries. Go on Daddy Direction, lay down the law.

Right. You may not have noticed, but Liam has a job. And it’s not catering to narcissistic fans 24/7. You also may not have noticed, but Liam is not your friend. Social media gives the illusion of proximity and familiarity, but it’s misleading. I’m very glad AAOOD3 took a moment to make a point about the behavior of this fandom on social media. Because it’s atrocious and embarrassing. And Liam has had a hard time on social media, taking a beating for tweets that we can now be pretty sure he didn’t actually tweet. Liam tries his best to please the fans. His team on the other hand…

So, is any of this getting through to the fandom?

Hahahaha, no.

You tried, baby. Entitled fandom is entitled.

Liam’s finally like fuck this shit I’m out. Having figured it out, he’s now a man on a mission. ;)

Which brings us to Harry. He’s learned to harness his star power and is now ready to put it to use.

Ah, I see he and Liam are on the same mission.

Meanwhile, Niall and Zayn are all tied up by the villain.

But their mission is also the same as Liam and Harry’s. Despite the public separation, 1D remains a team and on the same page: one band, one dream, One Direction. This is important since so much of their media coverage this year has been about them falling apart as a unit. Nope. Not true.

Ziall are still a bit confused as to what is the deal here. And the villain begins filling in the blanks.

Research and Development? You mean 1D thought their mission was fairly straightforward but has been detoured by some kinda wacky marketing plan? You don’t say?

And Ziall comes to the realization that they’re being used and manipulated.

Because the villain (1DHQ personified) has a hidden agenda.

Driven by a huge ego, greed and arrogance, our villain intends to leverage 1D’s success into a major power grab.

And so we begin to get our villain’s backstory. We also get a name, Dr. Lichtenstein. I wondered if this very Teutonic name (along with the accent) was supposed to have any relevance to 1D? Or was is just a nod to the classic post WWII supervillain meme? And then I thought waaiiittt a minute. Classic supervillain? Like a Bond supervillain? Like Ernst Stavro Blofeld aka Number 1, head villain in charge of SPECTRE? Like the Bond supervillain Louis and James Corden referenced on The Late Late Show?

Yes, Number 1 was the Bond villain with the pet cat. And in “Diamonds Are Forever” he uttered this iconic line:

This cannot be a coincidence. I’m convinced they meant to drop this hint. As in 1D approves AAOOD3. #confirmed

As for the name Lichtenstein, I think it may be a reference to legendary “pop” artist, Roy Lichtenstein. He was second only to Andy Warhol in popularity. So I’m sure someone like Mark Parsons would be aware of him since he was very influential in the graphic arts/animation world as well. He’s the guy that did all that comic strip style art. Today, they’re used as memes.

And The Sun (go ahead and start rolling your eyes now) used him to make a gratuitous Haylor reference.

Maybe the villain was named Lichtenstein as a nod to 1DHQ teaming up with the media (in particular their bottom bitch The Sun) to promote fake narratives–no homo narratives at that. Could be.

But back to Dr. L’s backstory.

Someone (or several someones) worked their way up the old fashioned way. Ok, cool.

But then things start to go left.

“Semi-autonomously functioning nutcrackers”?? Sounds like someone (or several someones) built a team of henchmen that bust 1D’s balls under their orders? Sounds about right.

Dr. L’s power grows and so does his ego. He thinks he knows more than his boss now.

I’m getting Sony leak vibes.

Doesn’t this sound like a reference to the back and forth between Sony and Syco regarding Syco’s value and its future operating budget? Ummmhmmm.

Niall’s definitely not trying to hear it.

Same Niall. Same.

Dr. L continues his rant. He’s pretty delusional at this point.

So now Ziall has the big picture. And they do not approve.

And not only do they not approve, they taunt Dr. L. The battle lines are drawn.

Dr. L then recaps his fiendish plot. Basically from the beginning of 1D’s success, the plan has been to exploit them for his own gain–by any means necessary.

He also tells them he’s had to adjust his plan due to 1D’s lack of cooperation. Again, the real life parallels are there.

Dr. L lets them know that he’s pleased with his plot thus far. Clearly controlling 1D has been a challenge. And he’s grateful to have gotten this far.

And here’s something to make you go hmmm…

Why is Zayn in particular the icing on the cake?? Please someone, tell me why Zayn has been singled out here? Why not Niall? I think we know. Zayn’s leaving was a pre-planned stunt. It’s not the result of Zayn being hateful, ungrateful, difficult, a druggie or a cheating fuck-up. It was planned to hurt 1D. Can we please finally put these bullshit narratives to bed? It’s pretty much spelled out for you. Thanks and moving on…

Zayn’s like nah son, this can’t possibly work.

And Dr. L is like , look kid as long as I have your young and clueless fans (literally on board…a train), I’m good.

But Ziall continues to be incredulous and goes on mocking and taunting Dr. L. Damn, they are two sassy handsful. Love it.

Yes Zayn, some people are irreplaceable. :’(

Followed by Dr. L letting them know one of the ways 1DHQ controls of the majority of the fandom.

They plant rumors in the fandom. LMAO at “I’ve seen it”. Sure Jan.

The planted rumors are lies, btw. In case you needed it spelled out for you.

Despite all he’s been through, Zayn remains defiant.

Drag him.

Zayn’s having a go at the merch in the form of Dr. L’s ridiculous hat. Is this not a very Zayn moment? Lemme remind you.

Zayn Malik is my people.

And 1DHQ’s response pretty much sums up their attitude towards all of 1D.

You betta watch your mouth because…

Who are these powerful friends, Zayn? Will a certain “poison dwarf” help take down this evil elf?

Niall questions how Dr. L could possibly drain 1D of their star power to fuel his empire without anyone noticing what he’s done.

Dr. L then reveals how he plans to ultimately wrap up this mega stunt.

You dirty low down lying dog!

Please enjoy this obvious shade.

Meaning that yes, just as many of us have suspected, 1DHQ does control certain media outlets. Surprise, surprise.

Our boys are not giving up. That includes Louis. 1DHQ may have drained Louis of his star power, but he’s still determined af.

Dr. L is feeling himself though, thanks to his evil plot.

Who’s currently juiced up on Louis’ star power?

That’s another easy one.

In fact, Dr. L is so juiced up that he now feels loyal henchmen are dispensable.

Test it out? Like this?

Interesting.

Niall thinks uber-narcissist Dr. L is doomed to fail.

Agreed.

But as of now, Dr. L still has the upper hand. What is 1D gonna do?

Does Zayn have a plan? How about down but not out Louis? When the heck are Liam and Harry gonna arrive and show us what they’ve learned? Stay tuned…

No Such Thing As Goodbye (OQ)

Because I find it utter bullshit that Emma believed SHE was the one who needed a moment alone with Robin.

I’m still pissed and in utter denial of what’s happened with Robin. It was unjust, uncalled for, and Regina needed this as much as I did. so sorry for the angst, but I hope you all enjoy.


She is numb. She is weak. She is stripped whole.

It’s been such a long, upward climb; such an awfully big mountain she’d had to claw her way back out of… and suddenly she’s that eighteen year old girl pleading with life to return her everything, pressing desperate wet lips to cold ones in an effort to revive what’s already been stolen.

Yes, Regina is well versed in being fucked over but this time she doesn’t fight. Doesn’t beg. Because she’s been here before and life has never been particularly kind to her, even if it’d promised her love and happiness with a man with a lion tattoo.

When Regina had first handed Robin those golden tipped arrows all those years ago she never would have dreamed they’d be wrapping them in roses and setting them upon his casket. Never would have wanted to see Roland stall with the confusion and the undeniable hurt of any child after losing not one parent but two before slowly adding his arrow to the pile.

He’s silent today, those brown eyes dimmed and his dimples buried and she aches with the thought of never seeing her thief’s face again. She prays these losses will not dim the light of her brave little knight’s soul.

The service continues in silence, save for the rumble of thunder as the sky cries for her thief and she tries so very hard not to fall apart.

It angers her that the Charming’s are all but huddled together to comfort each other – because they need all of the comfort in the world, she bites bitterly – while not one of them has even placed a hand upon her shoulder.

By the time the next flash of lightning illuminates the tombstone, most of the people have gone and she is left alone to stare stoically at a name that meant so much to her.

It takes her an hour. An hour before she sinks to her knees in defeat, the mud sloshing as she crashes, tainting her dark pantsuits as she lets go of the umbrella, watches it roll beside her as the rain starts to hit upon her back and her head, a cold sting, another reminder of the reality she is doomed to face.

Her Robin Hood is gone. Gone without an after life, without knowing where he would go, what would become of their family, what would become of her and he’d done it so willingly just to save her life that she’s clawing at her gloves to get them off, sinking her hands into the wet ground to clutch as her jaw finally drops on a desolate cry into the night that is swallowed by the thunderous storm raging above.

“I love you, Robin.” She whispers, her eyes glancing over the letters freshly sketched onto the tombstone before she’s looking up into the clouds, the raindrops falling about her face, mixing with hot tears as she rocks. “I love you so much, Robin please– don’t leave me.”

But he is gone. He is already gone and she hates that everything concerning him will be in past tense. He was an amazing father, a devoted friend, a loving boyfriend. Simply something that was instead of something that is but her love for him will always be present.

When her quiet sobs start to match the fury of the thunder above, Regina curses every being involved with ripping Robin away from her, for not giving them enough time – but also for letting her have him, if only for a fleeting moment in time.

There may never be presses of fuzzy kisses to her cheek, never another sparkle of blue eyes nor a rumble of his low voice as he laughs and the thought that these too will fade from memory in years to come have her heaving before she curls muddy hands to her chest and feels the pounding of her heart harder than it ever has.

“I love you.” She chokes into the sky and she pleads that somehow, someway, he will hear because he has to know. He should have known but she’d wasted so much time fuck why had they wasted so much time?

And now they have none.

You are my future, Regina.

“And you were mine.” Because she’d dreamed of a house with all their children, of waking up to him curled against her back, of lazy Saturday mornings and busy lunch breaks that would end up with him kissing her senseless against her desk and with a single selfless act these things too have ceased to exist with him.

It is dark by the time Regina finds the will to stand. By now her clothes have all but soaked through and she’s chilled to the bone, sniffling as she stands to find the tombstone is still standing upright, that her Robin is still not with her, and with more of a purpose she turns the pulsing object in her hand over once, twice, admiring the color and the defeat, before she wraps it delicately into the pouch and then pushes back enough dirt to hide it beneath the ground, just above his casket.

“Use mine, for the both of us.”

Her voice is hoarse, absolutely wrecked, and she has to scrunch her nose up to keep from sobbing once more. It’s not meant to dull her ache, or even to keep from experiencing her grief full force, but more so returning what rightfully belonged to him.

"It was always yours, Robin.” Her heart, from the moment she’d left it in his safekeeping when they’d first met, was his and there was no greater truth then that.

Her eyes glance over the name once more, eyes swollen and puffy as she takes a shaky breath. If they’d managed to get through so much, if David has managed to live with Mary Margaret’s heart in her chest, if Hook has managed to make it back from the underworld, then she will find a way to make sure her Robin never ceases to exist. That he is never forgotten.

"I’ll see you later, thief.” And she aches with the thought that he would have teased her, would have smirked at the use of his nickname and she can all but see those lips, that smile if she closes her eyes.

And she can all but imagine him saying until later, m'lady because there was no such thing as goodbye between soulmates. Just a promise of meeting each other again someday – somehow, someway. Of the forest her lovely man was from and she hopes that someday, in the rustle of leaves, in the promise of spring, that she’ll find him there again.