When I was nine, possibly ten, an author came to our school to talk about writing. His name was Hugh Scott, and I doubt he’s known outside of Scotland. And even then I haven’t seen him on many shelves in recent years in Scotland either. But he wrote wonderfully creepy children’s stories, where the supernatural was scary, but it was the mundane that was truly terrifying. At least to little ten year old me. It was Scooby Doo meets Paranormal Activity with a bonny braw Scottish-ness to it that I’d never experienced before.
I remember him as a gangling man with a wiry beard that made him look older than he probably was, and he carried a leather bag filled with paper. He had a pen too that was shaped like a carrot, and he used it to scribble down notes between answering our (frankly disinterested) questions. We had no idea who he was you see, no one had made an effort to introduce us to his books. We were simply told one morning, ‘class 1b, there is an author here to talk to you about writing’, and this you see was our introduction to creative writing. We’d surpassed finger painting and macaroni collages. It was time to attempt Words That Were Untrue.
You could tell from the look on Mrs M’s face she thought it was a waste of time. I remember her sitting off to one side marking papers while this tall man sat down on our ridiculously short chairs, and tried to talk to us about what it meant to tell a story. She wasn’t big on telling stories, Mrs M. She was also one of the teachers who used to take my books away from me because they were “too complicated” for me, despite the fact that I was reading them with both interest and ease. When dad found out he hit the roof. It’s the one and only time he ever showed up to the school when it wasn’t parents night or the school play. After that she just left me alone, but she made it clear to my parents that she resented the fact that a ten year old used words like ‘ubiquitous’ in their essays. Presumably because she had to look it up.
Anyway, Mr Scott, was doing his best to talk to us while Mrs M made scoffing noises from her corner every so often, and you could just tell he was deflating faster than a bouncy castle at a knife sharpening party, so when he asked if any of us had any further questions and no one put their hand up I felt awful. I knew this was not only insulting but also humiliating, even if we were only little children. So I did the only thing I could think of, put my hand up and said “Why do you write?”
I’d always read about characters blinking owlishly, but I’d never actually seen it before. But that’s what he did, peering down at me from behind his wire rim spectacles and dragging tired fingers through his curly beard. I don’t think he expected anyone to ask why he wrote stories. What he wrote about, and where he got his ideas from maybe, and certainly why he wrote about ghosts and other creepy things, but probably not why do you write. And I think he thought perhaps he could have got away with “because it’s fun, and learning is fun, right kids?!”, but part of me will always remember the way the world shifted ever so slightly as it does when something important is about to happen, and this tall streak of a man looked down at me, narrowed his eyes in an assessing manner and said, “Because people told me not to, and words are important.”
I nodded, very seriously in the way children do, and knew this to be a truth. In my limited experience at that point, I knew certain people (with a sidelong glance to Mrs M who was in turn looking at me as though she’d just known it’d be me that type of question) didn’t like fiction. At least certain types of fiction. I knew for instance that Mrs M liked to read Pride and Prejudice on her lunch break but only because it was sensible fiction, about people that could conceivably be real. The idea that one could not relate to a character simply because they had pointy ears or a jet pack had never occurred to me, and the fact that it’s now twenty years later and people are still arguing about the validity of genre fiction is beyond me, but right there in that little moment, I knew something important had just transpired, with my teacher glaring at me, and this man who told stories to live beginning to smile. After that the audience turned into a two person conversation, with gradually more and more of my classmates joining in because suddenly it was fun. Mrs M was pissed and this bedraggled looking man who might have been Santa after some serious dieting, was starting to enjoy himself. As it turned out we had all of his books in our tiny corner library, and in the words of my friend Andrew “hey there’s a giant spider fighting a ghost on this cover! neat!” and the presentation devolved into chaos as we all began reading different books at once and asking questions about each one. “Does she live?”— “What about the talking trees” —“is the ghost evil?” —“can I go to the bathroom, Miss?” —“Wow neat, more spiders!”
After that we were supposed to sit down, quietly (glare glare) and write a short story to show what we had learned from listening to Mr Scott. I wont pretend I wrote anything remotely good, I was ten and all I could come up with was a story about a magic carrot that made you see words in the dark, but Mr Scott seemed to like it. In fact he seemed to like all of them, probably because they were done with such vibrant enthusiasm in defiance of the people who didn’t want us to.
The following year, when I’d moved into Mrs H’s class—the kind of woman that didn’t take away books from children who loved to read and let them write nonsense in the back of their journals provided they got all their work done—a letter arrived to the school, carefully wedged between several copies of a book which was unheard of at the time, by a new author known as J.K. Rowling. Mrs H remarked that it was strange that an author would send copies of books that weren’t even his to a school, but I knew why he’d done it. I knew before Mrs H even read the letter.
Because words are important. Words are magical. They’re powerful. And that power ought to be shared. There’s no petty rivalry between story tellers, although there’s plenty who try to insinuate it. There’s plenty who try to say some words are more valuable than others, that somehow their meaning is more important because of when it was written and by whom. Those are the same people who laud Shakespeare from the heavens but refuse to acknowledge that the quote “Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them“ is a dick joke.
And although Mr Scott seems to have faded from public literary consumption, I still think about him. I think about his stories, I think about how he recommended another author and sent copies of her books because he knew our school was a puritan shithole that fought against the Wrong Type of Wordes and would never buy them into the library otherwise. But mostly I think about how he looked at a ten year old like an equal and told her words and important, and people will try to keep you from writing them—so write them anyway.
Gritty looney tunes reboot where bugs is a hit man who always asks “what’s up doc” before killing a target. It’s really cool when he does it. He also holds a carrot like a cigar, which I think is an original idea to the au. Thoughts?
hi mom your blog is my favourite on tumblr i love your writing so SO much!! if and when you have the time can you do the neighbour au for vixx? if it's too much then the maknae line will do (i've read all of your stuff multiple times over + you're the reason im into seventeen and got7 ily) thank you in advance!!
omg this is so sweet thank you so much!! im glad you’ve come to love 17+got7!!!
sometimes he doesn’t leave his apartment for days. you can tell because his mailbox overflows but you can hear the music from his apartment for like a week straight,,,,,,,and then sometimes you’ll see him leaving his place at like 3 am dressed like he’s going to a Very Fancy club
“it’s the life of a composer,,,,,,,i don’t sleep for like ever and when i finish i have to go and get drunk with the person who paid me to write the song”
his apartment is essentially his recording studio, all the instruments and his computer are in the living room and it’s so crowded he bumps into his piano everytime he tries to get to the kitchen
likes collecting those little lego figurines and they’re like everywhere. on his computer, above his microwave, probably in his bathroom near his shampoo
wears some,,,,,,,,interesting outfits that always become the talk of the block
likes to try and keep everything clean but at some point he’s so into work he doesn’t realize he’s spilled cola under his desk chair and the laundry hasn’t been done since hyuk got a solo i mean what now
you know ravi is a composer,,,,but you aren’t really sure what that entails
until your best friend hakyeon, who happens to be close to ravi is over at your place and is handing a list that is titled “how to keep ravi alive” and you’re like what
and hakyeon is like,,,,im going on a trip to europe for a month and usually i check in on ravi when he writes but i won’t be here and everyone is busy and i need to make sure he at least eats something,,,,but i can’t so please,,,,,,,,,,,,,,do this for me
and you wanted to refuse at first because you don’t even know ravi
but hakyeon is a sweet person and he promises he’ll come back with something nice from europe for you so you decide fine, how hard can it be to just check up on a person
TURNS OUT when it’s ravi it is kind of hard
because the first day you literally come into his home and try to introduce yourself 4 times before you realize he’s so sucked into his computer he can’t even hear you
you check his fridge and there’s just,,,,,some old wine and like???? take out that smells Suspicious
and you throw it out and come out of the kitchen to tell ravi he needs to eat but then he looks up at you and screams because hOw DID you gET in here,,,,,and you’re like IVE BEEN HERE FOR HALF AN HOUR and ravi is like?????? i never noticed
but he apologizes as soon as you explain what hakyeon told you and he’s like embarrassingly rubbing his neck like,,,,oh don’t listen to hyung im fine on my own
but you think about his refrigerator and how sunken-in his eyes look from probably not having sleep and you’re like ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,no i think hakyeon was right you need someones help
so you grocery shop and you buy coffee, red bull, energy supplements - whatever he needs to stay up
and hakyeon is only gone for a month but in that month you get to know ravi better than most people
how he works tirelessly, day and night, on 5 seconds of a song. how he gets angry with himself for not being able to write a melody. how he refuses to sleep until he’s met his goal
and the perseverance and creativity in him really shocks you because wow,,,,you’ve been living next to such a hard-working and talented person and you never even knew it
but also ravi you’ve worn those basketball shorts 4 days in a row take them off please
at one point you asked if ravi had brushed his teeth and he said something you couldn’t even understand so you went to the bathroom, came back with his brush and a cup of water and were like “open up”
and ravi was like ????? and you were like “ill brush your teeth while you work”
and it was,,,,,,,,,,oddly very intimate
and ravi may or may not have suffered like (3) mini heart-attacks
but when hakyeon comes back and ravi is done with his song you revert back to being,,,,,,just neighbors
until ravi needs to shut himself in for work again and you get a call from hakyeon where he’s like “you need to know something, ive been trying to make sure ravi is ok this past week but he keeps calling me by your name and when i tell him hello - im hakyeon he lets out a deep sigh and long story short i think ravi grew an attachment to you”
and you’re like??????? me????? but also,,,,,,,,you can’t help but smile a little
and you go next door and let yourself in and you’re like “ravi?” and you see he’s asleep with his head on his desk and you go over to get a blanket to cover him with but when you do, tucking it around his shoulders
you hear him murmur something low and you lean in closer and hear him say thank you along with your name
and when you come back to check on him again in a couple hours he’s awake and seeing you, it makes him actually stand up from his computer (something he does not do often when he works)
and he’s glowing, his sharp features all turning soft as he sees you
and you’re like “hakyeon told me you missed me” and ravi is like “AH,,,,well,,,,,,,kind of,,,,,i just,,,hakyeon nags at me and you were nice to me-”
and you get this smug look on your face and ravi is faltering under it and you’re like “here i brought some fruits over for you to snack on, but also -”
and you press a paper slip into his palm and ravi’s eyes widen and you’re like “it’s my number, so you can call me instead of hakyeon”
and you don’t see it as you go into the kitchen with the fruit but ravi literally gathers what little energy he has to do a little happy shimmy dance
and he tapes your number to the side of his computer screen and whenever he looks at it he gets this goofy grin on his face,,,,,,,,,because hehe,,,,,,,i have my crush’s number,,,,,
only person in vixx who makes his bed in the morning
lives a pretty simple and clean life, likes consistency and has one of those big calendars on his wall where he writes down all his future plans and probably even has like a workout schedule
park hyo shin album shrine in his bedroom complete with framed autograph
the type to have like candles ,,,,,,, that are in the shapes of like flowers it’s cute
bunnies have always reminded me of hongbin so maybe if he lived apart from vixx he’d have one that he jokingly names like wonshik but no no it’s real name is something cute like whatever the korean is for like carrot soup or something LOL
idk why but he likes pastel polka dots imagine him with pastel polka dot bed sheets he’s such a cute person
people are always surprised that he doesn’t have like,,,,,one billion mirrors in his house because like how can one Not look at a face like that
but in reality those kind of things make hongbin really shy,,,,,,like he’s just like,,,,im not handsome and everyone in the building is like IF that isn’t the biggest lie i have Ever heard with my own two ears
everyone in the neighborhood has a crush on him. it’s unavoidable. it’s hongbin fever
you’ve lived next door to him for a longtime so you guys are pretty familiar with each other,,,,,but the problem is everytime he meets one of your friends. they fall for him
and end up begging to come over just for a glimpse of him and then when they try to ask him out
hongbin awkwardly like ,,,,makes up an excuse as to why he can’t date them and they get sad and you’ve seen this happen five times and you’re just like ?????????? what is his type ????? what is he looking for???
but you’re not gonna ask him that because well like That’s Rude
but one night you actually end up over at his place because your tv broke,,,,and the premire of your favorite drama is on and hongbin was kind enough to let you in to watch it
and during a long commercial break you look down to see hongbin sitting at the table, writing down something and you decide that hey you’ll never have another chance to be alone like this with him
so you lower the volume a bit and you’re like “can i ask you something?”
and he nods without looking up and you’re like,,,,,, “ive lived across from you for like four years and ive never seen you,,,,,,,with someone,,,,that wasn’t from your friend group and this is probably super invasive but - are you seeing someone?”
and hongbin’s eyes go wide and he like looks up in silence
and you’re like “,,,,,,is it like an arranged marriage thing????? am i asking too much this is rude im sor-”
and hongbin shakes his head and is like “no,,,,,i just,,,,,,,,,” and you’re like ?????? and he kind of sadly laughs
and is like “,,,,,the person i like hasn’t come to a realization yet.”
and you’re shocked because hongbin. prince of your neighborhood. actual living art is harboring a one-sided love????
and you can’t help yourself you’re like “who is that blind? i mean,,,,,,,,anyone who looks at you is enchanted”
and hongbin laughs because that’s what he does. compliments make him shy
but then you go back to watching your drama and you don’t notice hongbin has stopped writing and suddenly you hear in a very quiet voice: “were you,,,,,,enchanted by me?”
and you look down at him and you’re like “are you asking if i liked you?”
and hongbin swallows a lump in his throat but builds up the courage to nod his head and you’re like “of course,,,,,,but i knew it was a longshot i mean ,,,,,,,,do you know how popular you are? it’s like falling for an idol-”
but suddenly hongbin is up and he’s like “don’t say that.” and you’re like is he embarrassed??????whats going on??????
but he just takes a seat next to you and he’s like “it’s you,,,,you’re the one i wanted to confess to me.”
and you’re so shocked,,,,,,you literally drop the remote and hongbin is getting red the longer you stare at him wide-eyed
until you’re like looking over at the tv and the drama is a kissing scene and then you look back at hongbin and you’re red now too
and you’re both red and there’s kissing in the background but you know what there should be some kissing in this apartment too
because you both like each other so why not
but when you do kiss him you’re like wait. wait. is this real did i fever dream this-
and hongbin takes your hand and puts it on his face and he’s like “it’s real.”
big tall meme
who can’t figure out how to cook a meal for himself but can reboot a computer and probably fix your tv in less than ten minutes
for the sake of this au,,,,hyuk is Nerd. as in his whole apartment is full of like action figures and comic books and video games and dirty socks and,,,,,half eaten bags of potato chips, opened cans of redbull
your usual college boy whose friends are all part of the e-sports club at school like c’mon
of course how could i forget, his movie collection of sci-fi alien flicks is the only thing that’s organized on his bookshelf
everyone in the building comes to him for help like the ladies need help with their broken microwaves and hairdryers while the dads don’t get why their son managed to break the new computer (hyuk looking at the sticky keyboard: uh,,,,)
and he does it for free for elders but the teenagers who go to him to learn how to game or upgrade their setups he’s like “my work isn’t cheap. 20 bucks an hour on nothing.”
hakyeon: stop pandering from teenagers
hyuk: ,,,,,,i have no idea what you are talking about *hiding his piggy bank which literally says ‘money from gamer nerdz’ jokes jokes
you know hyuk is handy with,,,,,electric stuff and whatnot so when your lights go out in the middle of the night even though you paid all your utilities like last week,,,,you know the man to go to
and when hyuk opens the door you’re like “whats up, my lights are out and im not sure if it’s a fuse box thing or -”
and hyuk is like “i got you let me come over”
but as you’re walking through the hall of your apartment you realize, you don’t have a flashlight and you’re like my phone is somewhere on my sofa,,,,,let me fell around
but you have literally zero light and it’s night out and you think you’re heading toward your sofa but you feel something soft standing in your way
and you’re like touching it and you’re like it’s soft,,,,but hard???
wait is that t-shirt
and you’re like hold up
“hyuk??? am i touching you????”
you: “why didn’t you stop me what th-”
hyuk: “it was fine, i liked it.”
and you turn pink, thankful for the lights off and want to swat his hand but you don’t know where that is until you feel his hand take your wrist
and he takes his phone out of his pocket and shines it on you and you’re like heY
and he’s like “hehe cute” and you’re like excuse me what
and hyuk is like “nothing, lead the way”
and when you get to the fuse box you hold the phone and see hyuk work with the wires. you notice the light shading his handsome face, a set jawline and wow,,,,his height????
and you’re like this is the first time im looking at hyuk and going ‘he’s hot’ what the HECK is wrong with me
and hyuk finishes in under five minutes and all your lights turn back on and he smiles
and it’s so,,,,,cute his nose is adorable did you just notice that??? why are you having all of these thoughts about your neighbor??
and he’s like “all done. how’d you like to pay me?”
and you’re like “i think i have some cash- but,,,,”
and hyuk grins because he’s like “yes,,,,,i don’t want cash”
and you’re like oh,,,,,,,,and you’re like “ok lean down-”
and hyuk does super duper excited that he’s about to get a kiss
but instead you pinch his cheek and go “ill order us pizza, don’t think im easy han sanghyuk.”
and with that you turn around and hyuk is just like: that was sexy
Malachai ‘Kai’ Parker: This guy is batshit crazy. He would literally kill for you and maim anyone who insults you and then draw hearts on the walls with blood for you. He will call you just to say hi and listen to your voice. He will take you on an airplane ride and take you to his childhood home just so he can cook you thanksgiving dinner (his favorite holiday). He’ll look at you with those sexy eyes and whisper to you with those plump lips. He would push you against the wall and do all the right moves. He would buy you a teddy bear on your birthday. This is the kind of guy that would totally be turned on by the idea of you chaining him to the bed to ‘punish’ him.
Mon-El: This one is an actual outer-space stray puppy that is obsessed with red vines. This guy will be there for you when you need a shoulder to cry on, cuddle you and plant kisses on you forehead. He’ll stare at you those big blue puppy eyes and take you dancing. He’s the kinda guy that will bring you carrots for flowers on your anniversary because he liked the color orange. He will call you blobby babe any chance he gets and compare your eyes to the stars. He will help you make pancakes only to accidentally throw flour all over both of you. But you can’t possibly be mad at him so you just kiss his white flour lips.
Jake Riley: Oh tortured Jake Riley. He’s the kind of guy that will fall for you but will not admit it because he believes he’s not good enough for you. He’ll flirt with you wearing a pair of weird glasses. He’s the kind of guy that will take a bullet for you. You’ll stare as he changes from his hot sweaty police suit and get in the shower with him. He’ll ask you out on a date and the date will consist of a cute little picnic on the roof and him singing to you. This is the kind of guy that will grow old with you and hold your hand and tell you how much he loves you on your last day. You’ll tell him to smile more because he doesn’t know how beautiful he looks when he smiles. He’s basically a ball of sunshine that you can’t live without.