and i blip out for a second as i think about something else

When Duty and Desire Meet Chapter 4

Art by @edendaphne , words by moi!

Summary: After their accidental kiss on Valentine’s day, both Marinette and Chat Noir have to deal with the emotional fallout of their actions.

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Valentine’s Day Part 2

“So, let me get this straight,” Alya said, leaning back against Marinette’s desk chair and steepling her fingers. Beside her, on a little table-cushion Marinette had made, Tikki slept soundly, having already heard the story a thousand times over. “You’re in love with Chat Noir.”

“You already knew that,” Marinette groaned from her chaise, hugging a cushion to her chest and leaning back like a Freudian patient. Lord knows she was about three sentences away from a therapy-inducing hissy fit regardless, so it was probably prudent of her to be lying down in such a way. She was preparing for her inevitable breakdown that’s all. It was the smart thing to do.

And she rarely did the smart thing nowadays it seemed, so she really needed this.

“You’ve been in love with Chat as Ladybug for like a bajillion years,” Alya continued, ignoring Marinette as she continued to rehash pointless details. Details which made Marinette want to bludgeon herself to death with her cushion.

It was most likely impossible to do such a thing but she was never one to back down from a challenge. Death by cushion- she’d find a way.

“Yes. We’ve already established that,” she replied through gritted teeth, said cushion slowly creeping up to cover her face.

“But last night you kissed him by accident,” Alya said.

“Uh-huh.”

“As Marinette.”

“That is correct sir,” Marinette wiggled a finger.

“And he gave you a rose and kissed you back.”

“Tru’ dat.”

It was indicative of Marinette’s deteriorating mental state that she’d said “Tru’ dat”. She’d never said “Tru’ dat” in her whole life.

“I see,” Alya nodded a few times. The fact her tone had remained neutral the whole time was doing nothing to help Marinette’s poor nerves, and so she swung her legs over the side of her chaise, sitting up to get a better view of Alya’s twinkling eyes. A sense of dread settled in Marinette’s stomach. Alya’s eye-twinkles were never a good thing, at least when they were directed towards her.

I see?! Is that all you have to say? Seriously?! I thought you’d be freaking out right now, I mean I’m freaking out but then I ALWAYS freak out. You not freaking out is making me freak out harder! Can you please freak out with me? Join me in the freak out zone already!” Marinette blabbed, waving her arms and promptly dropping the cushion to the ground.

Alya said nothing, instead choosing to raise an eyebrow at her and cross her legs. At least she’d stopped steepling her fingers, Marinette thought gruffly.

After a short pause, Alya finally spoke, but her voice wobbled and strained unnaturally, her lips thinned in a way that was entirely too suspicious. “Firstly, stop saying freak out, secondly I’m not freaking out because this is the funniest thing I’ve ever heard.”

She barely made it to the end of her sentence before she doubled over and descended into giggles.

It was in that moment that Marinette realised Alya’s peculiar behaviour had been due to her hiding her amusement, and she felt fully justified in yanking the cushion from its position on the floor and hurling it towards her supposed ‘best friend forever.’

Unfortunately, Alya dodged the fluffy projectile with ease.

“Come on, this is serious! I’m in hot water here!” Marinette cried, crossing her arms across her chest.

“When are you not though? Let’s be real,” the redhead shot back with a wry grin, twirling in the chair and kicking backwards to check her hair in the small vanity mirror on Marinette’s desk. The sight made Marinette relax a little. Alya only checked her hair with such scrutiny when she was seriously contemplating something.

Suddenly missing the comforting embrace of the cushion, Marinette flopped down once more. As her back hit the large pillows adorning her chaise, she let out a long sigh and all the fear, the panic, the fight, left her in one fell swoop. Only tiredness and uncertainty remained.

“How am I going to face him?” she whispered. Her head tilted towards her small, round window, to the afternoon sun beaming down in a total antithesis to her feelings. She wondered where Chat Noir was at that moment.

Did she cross his mind?

Over the years Marinette had asked herself that question more times than she could count. But it was different now. Now she wondered if Chat thought of her, of Marinette, not of Ladybug. Did he dwell on it- how they’d kissed? She had. She’d thought about it all night, until exhaustion had finally overcome her and she’d woken up late, cold, wanting something she could barely comprehend.

For years, she’d thought about what it would mean to kiss Chat Noir, Dark Cupid incident aside considering she couldn’t even remember it.

A small, involuntary whimper left her when she recalled the night before. The kiss had been an accident… at first. But the second she felt Chat’s lips press into hers was burned into her memory, playing over and over again. The moment he returned her kiss had ignited something dormant inside her and she felt raw, emotions exposed and unlocked, with nowhere to hide.

She considered her question again. How on earth could she face him as Ladybug, knowing what she did, knowing him the way he didn’t know he knew her (and god wasn’t that sentence confusing in and of itself)?

For God’s sake Marinette, it was a peck of a kiss at the most, pull yourself together!

“You’ll figure it out.”

Alya’s voice sounded lightyears away, so stuck was Marinette in her own musings. She jumped, a little sheepishly, and realised she hadn’t noticed Alya coming over to her until the spinning desk chair was pressed right by the chaise. The next moment, Alya’s hands were in her hair. Having thoroughly fixed her own short curls, she now concentrated on the silky strands of Marinette’s loose locks, braiding little plaits as if they were children at a sleepover.

Marinette let her. Two perfectly groomed heads were better than one.

“You think you can talk to him about it? As you I mean, not Ladybug,” Alya suggested, quickly clarifying her meaning whilst tugging the red ribbons loose from Marinette’s dark hair.

Snorting in response, Marinette couldn’t help but roll her eyes. Talk? To Chat? The very idea…

“Yeah sure, let me just tweet at him Ayla. Hashtag balcony make-outs,” she giggled, feeling a little better as her hair fell around her shoulders.

Foregoing the braids, Alya reached up and began tying something new into Marinette’s hair, tutting in disapproval. “Slide into the DM’s at least girl, I raised you better than that.”

They shared a laugh, settling into a comfortable silence as Alya worked on both sides of her hair. Marinette sat back and mulled over her options. Truth be told she didn’t have many. She couldn’t talk to Chat, after all it wasn’t likely he’d be back and she had no idea who he was in real life. The notion that she could talk to him as Ladybug, thus revealing herself, made her rapidly descend into a panic so sharp that she quickly pushed that thought to the side.

Really there was nothing else to do but call it what it was. A blip. A crazy alignment of stars which had given her a taste of everything she’d wanted for the past four years, a reminder that it was probably all she was going to get.

She tried not to let the disappointment settle in her bones, yet it was fruitless. Her chest ached as though a hole had been carved there.

Suffice to say it was a familiar ache where Chat was concerned, but it was bigger now.

“There. Done,” Alya pulled back, pleased with her work, and Marinette stood. Stepping over to the vanity mirror, she leaned down to check her reflection. “Matching colours for you and the bae,” she teased, eyebrows wiggling from underneath her rounded glasses.

Marinette threw the cushion at her again, feeling a smug sense of satisfaction as it smacked her right in the face.

At the very least, she had the Gaming Club that night, that would provide a very welcome distraction.

***

Adrien was on the verge of a nervous breakdown.

Which was ironic, considering he’d joined the Gaming Club to avoid that exact thing from happening.

“I can’t do this, I’m going to cancel,” he whimpered, hiding out in the bathroom a floor above their usual meeting place like the coward he was.

“So cancel,” Plagg shrugged, busy amusing himself with unfurling a roll of toilet paper- as per his usual hobby.

“I can’t cancel!” Adrien replied, horror struck as he gazed at himself in the mirror. His fingers gripped the sides of the sink so hard that his knuckles turned white. “Are you insane?!”

“So don’t cancel,” Plagg’s disinterested monotone was really starting to grate on him. “Honestly kiddo what do you want me to say and will it get me food faster?”

The resounding groan from Adrien’s throat was so despairing in nature that he was afraid he’s start rumours of a ghost haunting the building. He leaned on his elbows, burying his face into his hands.

Stupid. He’d been so, so, stupid. And reckless! Totally reckless. What had he been thinking?!

It was worth it though, a small, unchecked part of him thought. Adrien squashed it flat in an instant. After all there was no time to consider the fluttering in his chest, the pleasant swoop of his stomach. Now was the time to face the consequences of his actions. His incredibly foolish, totally moronic actions.

Because, although a part of him ignited, burned in the best possible way, at the memory of Marinette’s lips against his own, another part felt thoroughly ashamed. It felt like he was tricking her in some way. Granted that had never been his intention. His plan had been simple. Leave the rose on her balcony for her to discover. She’d never know it was him and be happy at the gift from a secret admirer. Obviously, things hadn’t worked out the way he planned, though he should have anticipated that.

When had things ever gone the way he planned?

He needed to apologise to her, as Chat, and he was going to do so that night in fact. But before that Adrien needed to pretend, he needed to lie, to Marinette. To the girl he loved. He needed to act like he hadn’t heard her soft sigh, felt the warmth of her skin and the taste of her cherry-blossom lips. He had to fake it, act like it had never happened.

He had to pretend he didn’t desperately want it to happen again.

The idea of being so fake made him ill, and so he placed his hands under the cold water tap to splash his face, allowing the iciness of the water to penetrate his senses and offer him some much-needed clarity.

It didn’t really work but it was the best he could do.

When he entered the Gaming Club, Plagg tucked securely inside his jacket pocket, he was relieved to see Marinette talking to other people. He could barely look at her, the meagre glimpse he’d gotten from across the room had sent his heart cartwheeling down the corridor and somewhere into the next arrondissement.

Not wanting to look suspicious, and fully admitting that he was stalling for time, Adrien wandered over to the desk where Nino was hooking up an old Nintendo console for one of their signature Mario Kart nights.

Mario Kart…Marinette…partners… sitting close together… oh no.

“Hey bro!” Nino chirped, offering Adrien a fist to bump, clearly not noticing how the blood had completely drained from his friend’s face. “Everything ok?”

“H-hey! Everything’s good!” The first lie of the evening. How could Adrien have forgotten it was a Mario Kart night? More importantly, how was he going to survive the evening now? Sitting next to Marinette, shoulders pressed together, watching her tongue poke out in concentration like it normally did? How could he concentrate on anything knowing how close he’d been to said tongue the night before?

Grow up Adrien! You aren’t some horny teenager and Marinette isn’t a prize to be objectified. Show her some respect already!

If Nino had thought Adrien’s reaction was strange, he didn’t show it. Together they settled into an easy conversation, Adrien helping his friend set up the old console. Focusing on such a menial task did wonders for his nerves. He was almost starting to feel normal. Almost.

Of course, just as he was beginning to relax, Marinette had to tap him lightly on the shoulder.

She might as well have given him a 1.21 gigawatt electric shock, given his reaction to both was about the same. If he’d been Chat Noir at the time, his superpowers might have actually propelled him through the ceiling.

“A-Adrien?” Marinette tilted her head, taken aback by his startled shriek. “Are you ok?”

Subconsciously, Adrien’s hand reached up and he clutched his chest, fingers burying into his jumper as if it would cure the frantic beating of his wild heart.

Because she was there, right in front of him. Marinette. The girl he’d kissed last night.

His eyes flicked down to her lips before he could help himself.

“Adrien?”

The second time her voice permeated through his cloudy mind, something snapped inside of him. It was as if he were a character in a film, once played in slow motion, now fast-forwarding.

“Hey!” he cried, louder than he intended, and the people around him turned to stare. He looked at her eyes instead, with far more intensity than normal, mainly because he was so intent on not looking at her lips any more. “Marinette! It’s my friend- Marinette! My good friend, I’m good! How are you? You good- good? Yeah, I’m good, friend. How are you? Did you have a good Valentine’s day?”

WHAT?! Adrien’s brain-filter kicked in far too late, but began screaming at him nonetheless. Why would you ask her that? WHY?! You know how it went! YOU WERE THERE!

Marinette blinked, and it proved just how far gone he was that he found her blinking adorable.

Her blinking.

“Umm,” she blushed, unsure of what to say and, honestly, Adrien couldn’t blame her. He sounded insane even to his own ears, and he’d just asked her something quite private. Actually, he was surprised she wasn’t berating him for it. Then again, she thought he didn’t know about her encounter with Chat Noir.  His words may have seemed innocent to her ears.

What a mess Adrien had gotten himself into, and it only seemed to grow worse with every bit of word-vomit he expelled.

(Was it bad that he felt a tiny bit of pride at her blushing? Probably. But he was going to hell anyway so he might as well enjoy the slow descent at least a little bit.)

Tucking her hair behind her ear, Marinette glanced baffled at Nino, whom Adrien could see shrugging from his peripheral vision.

But he couldn’t care less.

Because he’d just noticed her hair. Or, more specifically, how she was wearing it.

In place of the red ribbons usually tied into her loose black locks, were two green ones instead. Vivid green. Chat Noir green.

His brain collapsed in on itself.

“I’m good-good too.”

Marinette was teasing him. She was grinning and she had green ribbons in her hair and Adrien was going to DIE.

“Good! That’s good!”

Great. He’d always wanted to die sounding like a partially strangled mongoose.

Marinette, mercifully, took pity on him and waved a controller in his face, offering him a place in the first race of the evening. He sighed, relaxing a little, but only a little. Gaming was fine. It was a welcome distraction, as long as he didn’t sit too close to her he’d be fine (who was he kidding? Of course he was going to sit close to her). At least, when he was focused on blue shells and Bullet Bills his brain couldn’t fixate on the meaning behind Marinette’s ribbons, if there was any hidden symbolism he was missing.

Suddenly the thought of seeing her that night, of apologising, seemed that much more dangerous- forbidden almost. But he had to do it. He owed it to her as her friend. Even if that’s all he could ever hope to be.

Nino still hadn’t finished setting up, and a few other members began helping him in their eagerness to get started. As a result, Adrien found himself more alone with Marinette than ever.

They sat down on the floor, controllers in hands, side by side. Their shoulders brushed, like they always did.

Adrien swallowed, wishing he’d worn a t-shirt instead of the woollen monstrosity currently overheating him.

He was fairly sure he was going to lose the game spectacularly.

His fears were proved right when, later that evening, Marinette’s knee brushed against his own and he ended up sending Donkey Kong careening off the end of Rainbow Road.

It was going to be a long night.

***

For the fifteenth time that evening, Marinette called herself an idiot.

Because she was an idiot. An idiot for standing on her balcony, an idiot for hoping lightning would strike twice in the same spot, an idiot for following her heart…

Tightly wrapping her cardigan around her, she gazed out into the mocking skyline. The bitterness of the cold February air was nothing compared to the bitterness she felt building up like sludge in her chest. Bitterness in her fortunes, bitterness in her decisions, bitterness in her own feelings.

Distantly, Marinette thanked the stars that at least it wasn’t as cold as it usually was. She was thankful she had a tiny shred of dignity left at least- that she wasn’t freezing to death in the vain hope that Chat Noir would show up again.

She reached up, fingers brushing against her lips, and remembered.

Furious with herself, Marinette shook her head, as if the rough gesture would expel all the unwanted memories from her mind. Honestly what was she doing acting like a silly sixteen-year-old with a crush? Again?! It was desperate, obsessive, ridiculous-

And totally in character if she was being honest with herself.

She needed a break. A breather. A respite from her own whirlwind emotions regarding the man in the black mask, the man who’d held her heart for longer than she cared to admit to anyone- not even Alya.

Stuffing her hands in her pockets, Marinette let out one last frustrated sigh before turning on her heels and making her way back to her room. Maybe her room would be less of a reminder, would save her from her torment.

But, as usual, fate had other plans for her.

Because, of course, Chat Noir happened to be standing there as if he’d suddenly popped into existence.

The shock of seeing him sent Marinette stumbling backwards with a cry, tripping over a flowerpot and tumbling to the ground.

“Whoa!” Chat called, rushing forward to catch her just in time. One hand gripped her flailing wrist, the other pressed against the small of her back as he pulled her towards him.

For a moment, both of them froze in place. Chat’s fingers splayed across her back, and she briefly felt the edges of his clawed-gloves scratching gently against the fabric of her cardigan. An involuntary shiver ran up her spine before she could control it.

Chat’s eyes widened and he stepped out of their half-embrace with awkward, jittery movements, casting his face away from hers. “Sorry,” he mumbled, scratching the back of his head. “Sorry I shouldn’t have startled you. I guess I have a bad habit.”

Bad habit huh? Marinette had one of those too.

The silence which settled on them both was heavy, uncomfortable, and borderline unbearable. It was laden with memories of the night before, swirling around them, echoing in their minds as though they were standing in an empty theatre, watching their mistakes projected on a screen with no means of escape.

Because it was a mistake… wasn’t it? She hadn’t meant to kiss him, he probably regretted kissing her back. That was why he was here- of that she was sure. To think he was here for any other reason was just asking for a broken heart.

But, oh god, it hadn’t been a mistake. Not to her. She couldn’t ever consider it to be such.

Finally, Marinette could take the silence no longer. Taking a deep breath, she fixed a smile onto her face, painted a picture of a girl who had herself together at least a little, and placed a hand on her hip.

“No rose tonight?”

Chat’s cat-ears twitched. He peered over at her with a puzzled frown before he realised she was teasing. Something dark crossed his eyes and Marinette forgot how to breathe. The look was gone before she could concentrate on it fully, and she found that he was smiling back at her.

“Err, n-no. No. That is- I mean- unfortunately not,” he replied with his signature bow. “But I do have something far more important.”

“Oh really?” Marinette squeaked, inwardly cringing at how lame she sounded. She’d wanted her voice to be sensual and teasing, but instead it sounded like she’d inhaled a ton of helium instead. Clearing her throat, she tried again, arching her eyebrow for good measure and all the while thrilled at the fact that he was simply there. Chat Noir was there. He’d come back to her. “What’s that?”

“An apology.”

Marinette’s blood ran cold.

“About last night,” Chat continued, shuffling from foot to foot, completely unaware of how Marinette’s body, mind, and heart had seized up all at once. “I feel like I made a terrible impression. I- well- I’m not the type of guy to do… what I did.”

From the depths of despair and panic, Marinette felt the faintest hints of confusion. She latched onto it. Confusion was better than rejection.

“What do you mean?” she asked, her voice small and vulnerable, wrapping her arms around herself.

“Well I’m not really a playboy or anything, despite what the media likes to speculate about me. I don’t kiss strangers on balconies. I guess, I didn’t want you to have the wrong impression about me.”

When Marinette hung her head, Chat felt a wave of regret wash over him. He’d practiced what he wanted to say, over and over again but it never seemed enough to fully explain himself- not without revealing to her that he was Adrien Agreste and he’d been lying to her this entire time. He was too afraid of the ramifications of that- so he needed to end this now- before he hurt her.

Damn it, he’d gotten so close though. So close to knowing what they could have- what they could be.

But it was a fantasy. Chat Noir was a large part of him, but it wasn’t all of him. The person he was behind the mask was locked away from Marinette, was a separate entity in her eyes.

Who was he fooling? They couldn’t be together. Not like this.

He had to try harder as Adrien and if she rejected him he would simply pick up the pieces of his broken heart. He would respect her, be her friend, move on, and certainly not use Chat Noir’s hero status as a means to trick her into loving him. She deserved better, deserved the world, even if he wasn’t the one to give it to her.

That’s why he had to leave. Right now. Being here, being this close to her, was crumbling his resolve. Every cute gesture she made was another step closer to his damnation. He had to leave before he said or did something he’d regret, before his principles were lost to the wind.

“It was Valentine’s day. I guess… it’s easy to get swept up in the romance of the day, right?” Marinette said. She was smiling, but the sparkle in her eyes was dulled somehow. Once again Chat’s attention was drawn to the green ribbons in her hair, as she quickly tucked a few strands behind her ears. He couldn’t bring herself to speak as she grew distant, deep in her own thoughts, and her shoulders raised. “But if we’re being honest Chat, I was worried you’d see me in a bad light too. Like- I mean- I’m not the kind of girl who kisses random celebrities and I’m certainly not the type to blab to the press about it either.”

“I didn’t ever think you were,” he uttered, swallowing thickly, and a little bit of sparkle returned to Marinette’s eyes. Her cheeks turned pink again.

Chat felt his claws digging painfully into his palms.

“Well… that’s a relief. I mean I always admired you,” Marinette stammered out the confession before she meant to, quickly covering her blunder with half-truths. “You know you saved me once- from an akuma. You didn’t notice me at the time, and it was years ago, but I never forgot.”

Chat felt as though he’d been physically struck by her words.

He’d saved her? He’d saved Marinette? And he hadn’t noticed her?!

“I wish I’d seen you,” he said before he could help himself. The rest of his desires remained unsaid, as new possibilities, new what ifs, formed in his mind- like an alternate reality.

Chat inwardly cringed. No way in hell was he going to get any sleep that night.

“I wish you’d seen me too,” Marinette admitted.

Chat’s hand was halfway to hers before he yanked it back, his heart beating wildly, his mind screaming at him to leave. The pull was almost tangible, magnetic, drawing him closer to her. It was dangerous, and he needed to leave.

“I hate to be a sundae, but I have to split!” he laughed, high and fake, all the while cringing at what was perhaps the worst pun he’d ever made. And that was saying something.

Marinette didn’t say anything, but laughed once.

Ok, she thought, maybe she was ridiculous, but he was equally so. Maybe that’s why she loved him so much.

She watched him make his way to the edge of the balcony and something stirred inside her, the raw feelings which had sparked when their lips had met woke from their slumber, and she reached out to touch his shoulder.

“Chat?” her voice matched the soft tremors echoing through her body, and she tried to remember to breathe. She couldn’t let him leave like this, she’d been so close. “How about…one last kiss?”

Chat stilled, statue-like. His lips parted, and Marinette panicked.

“I mean!” she corrected, face turning to flames, “I mean sorry that was dumb- so dumb. It’s just that I- I liked that kiss and I thought- I don’t know what I thought- but I wanted to-”

His lips crashed into hers, and the rest of Marinette’s sentence was lost forever.

Chat kissed her, kissed her with a resolve thoroughly destroyed and a heart so indescribably owned; owned by her, possessed by her, consumed by her. His hands were frantic, and Marinette matched him in every way as they pressed into each other. Her fingers gripped the back of his head, tangled in his hair, and pulled him closer.

Like he needed an excuse to get closer to her.

The pair of them moved apart to breathe, great shuddering breaths, and then their lips were together again- as neither of them could stand to be apart for a moment. Chat’s fingers slid from her hands to grip her hips, a primal, dark part of him triumphant as he heard a moan slip from Marinette’s mouth.

They stumbled backwards, towards the wall, and Chat pressed her against it, hands roaming her sides- never going too far- always listening to her reactions. Desire coursed through him, a need to please her, to make her moan again, without pushing too far.

She must have sensed him falter, sensed his caution, as a frustrated hum rose from the back of her throat, almost like a purr of her own. Her hands moved from his hair, gripping the bell around his throat, and she tugged him down towards her, kissing his neck.

Chat was having a hard time not passing out from that alone, but then she rolled her hips, making it so there wasn’t a sliver of streetlight between them, and he was fairly certain he died and was reborn on the spot.

Dangerous was the word whispering in his mind, the word he was ignoring as his hands cupped the sides of Marinette’s face, tilting her head back. She arched into him again, countering his movements like a dance, and he gasped.

It felt too natural, too perfect… almost…familiar.

Dangerous he thought as his tongue flicked against her lips.

Dangerous- he thought as her mouth opened and he was rewarded with another moan.

Stop. Stop before you can’t, he pleaded with himself as Marinette’s hands wrapped around his shoulders, her fingernails scratching against his neck.

He didn’t stop.

They kissed for what seemed like hours, passion moving from an explosive force to one of slow-burning sensuality, settling into a rhythm that was far too natural, but neither of them could bring themselves to mind.

It was a long time before Chat could bring himself to leave her, to stop kissing her. It was addictive, intoxicating, and filled with promise. For months his heart had been starved, yearning and wishing, and now it was real. Their kisses were real, her affections were real.

And so was her voice, ringing out in the coldness of the night, in answer to his question, “May I see you tomorrow night, Princess?”

There was a pause, both of them treading on thin ice, ice which slowly creaked and groaned beneath their feet.

“Yes,” she breathed, and the ice shattered, plunging them both into unknown depths.

(art to follow)

Room Analysis: Rose Quartz

Anonymous said:
What is the point of Rose Quartz’s room? Not as a narrative device, which it functions wonderfully as a reflective and therefore revealing mirror, but in universe, what was its purpose? Why would Rose Quartz have her room be able to form simulations?

I think this is a good question. When we look at the rooms of the gems, they are their rooms in every sense of the word. Not only do the Crystal Gems own these spaces, but as we’ve seen from Barn Mates, all gems want to feel as though they have a space of their own. 

What I think is that it isn’t necessarily having a physical space itself that really makes the room compelling. Rather, it’s the idea that in a world that is still foreign, sometimes hostile, and always uncontrollable, a room is a space in which freedom and control can be exercised at the same time.

This is more prominently observed in some Gems’ rooms over others. But it’s a recurring thing that is evident enough to warrant further analysis.

Because the space is so personal, we get to see something of the characters that at times, aren’t even revealed to the characters themselves. With that, let’s kick off this new series with Rose’s room.

1. The Imagery of Pink Clouds

When we look at Rose’s room in particular, it does indeed appear consistent with her character, by the sheer colour scheme alone already tells us how much of Rose’s the room is. 

And I think this contrasts with the way the other Gems’ rooms are presented. Characters who maintain a physical presence in the show, like the other Crystal Gems and the Homeworld “defectors” have a more subtle sign that a room is theirs. For instance, Pearl does have the whitish blues in her room, but it could also be mistaken for a room in the Sea Spire without proper context. Amethyst’s room in the temple has piles of purple but the dominant background colours also involve blue. And the Burning Room, which is Garnet’s space, is largely devoid of the colours in her aesthetic. The same can be said for the Barn, Peridot, and Lapis.

On the other hand, Rose doesn’t have her own presence in the show. Her influence in events and the way characters interact is in no part facilitated by present actions. Instead, reminders of her exert a strong influence on the cast. And it would then make sense that each reminder is very prominent and very apparent. 

Part of this presentation involves how the clouds are the same pink as her hair, and her gemstone. I would say that thematically, the overtness of colour indicates a reinforcement of Rose’s identity. While the other Gems are more comfortable with the subtlety of their identity being revealed in their space, Rose needed to be reminded of it every time she entered her comfort zone. 

Rose went through a lot of changes in her life. From leaving her rank on Homeworld, to initiating the Rebellion, to remaining on Earth, to meeting Greg, to deciding to have Steven, her roles continually changed.

That the other main motif is clouds reinforces this. Clouds are transient. They form through condensation and they dissipate. They are moved around by external forces such as the temperature and wind. 

In that, it would make sense that Rose had nothing in her room. It shows that her person was not beyond just letting things go, and letting the forces around her show her what her next step would be. 

We know that’s just the surface though. We know that Rose did struggle with the things she did, that she wanted to make things right but really didn’t know how. Rose wanted to be able to let go. And to some extent she was successful. She didn’t rock the boat she was on too much and was able to leave a lot of loose ends untouched. Chief among them was her own friend and comrade.

Nonetheless, she couldn’t completely shut off how she felt about the past. Her many attempts at healing the corrupted gems show that her past did weigh on her. Trying to heal them may have been a way to assuage herself of the guilt, dragging everyone into the war she started.

On their own, the absence of anything in the room may have served the purpose of centring  Rose. The quiet of her room may have helped her cope with the clutter in her mind. There were so many things that she didn’t say and didn’t try to say.

The room is a sharp break from who she was as a character: Complicated. Even when the weather in the room becomes tumultuous, there is still nothing there. Nothing to get whipped by the wind or tossed around by the draft. But it does show us who Rose wanted to be, or at least what she was trying to become.

2. Projections, Fabrications, and Simulations

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When I say Oliver should fight for Felicity...

There has been a lot of debate in the fandom for over a year now about whether Oliver should’ve fought harder to make things right with Felicity after the breakup. Everyone has their own definition of what “fighting for Felicity” means, and I won’t speak for everyone. I can only speak for myself and relay my own hopes and frustrations.

Today @emilytbett was nice enough to share with us the autographed script she received of 4x16 in which Olicity recite their vows.

It was actually so beautiful and amazing to see how the actors contributed to the script and really made the characters come to life in that scene. I think we all needed to see this and be reminded of why we’ve been staying with the show even when we want to scream and throw things at the TV.

There are many reasons why I’ve been upset this season and why I felt like I was pushed to my limit with 5x15. And it’s seeing this beautiful script and what we could’ve had that has made it hit home. I am one of those fans that strongly believes Oliver should’ve fought for Felicity, especially after he said these vows. With lines like “You will always be the best thing about me for the rest of my life” and “I will never lie to you again. Ever, ever again,” how could we not believe Oliver would’ve done everything in his power to make things right with the love of his life?

Originally posted by yet-i-remain-quiet

Some fans argue that Felicity firmly closed the door on a reconciliation, and it wouldn’t have been right for Oliver to pursue her. But fighting for Felicity, to me, was never about Oliver coming on too strong or pressuring her to give him another chance romantically. I actually think the two did need to take a break and be apart for a while during hiatus. They both had a lot of heartache and issues to process and work through individually.

But where I think the writers truly did the characters and fans a disservice in Season 5 is by not having Oliver become a living embodiment of these vows. Flirting with Felicity and asking her out was not how Oliver needed to fight for Felicity. To truly make things right, he first needed to apologize for lying. A simple, heartfelt “I’m sorry” to show that he was genuinely remorseful and understood how he hurt her. Nothing is more powerful than actually hearing the one you love say the words.  

Then, every day after that, Oliver needed to show he’d changed through his actions. That meant being a good friend and partner by making sure Felicity had support after her paralysis, job loss, and Havenrock. If anyone understands the effects of trauma, it’s Oliver. They didn’t have to be big scenes because, let’s be honest, Arrow more often than not has issues with pacing and giving sufficient time to hit the emotional beats. These moments are usually small but powerful blips that we either re-watch or gif the heck out of to catch all of the subtle nuances. But small, consistent moments of Oliver asking about Felicity’s day or if she’s okay when she seems off would’ve gone a long way. Heck, even something as simple as bringing her a coffee or Big Belly Burger (I know he’s a food snob but Felicity loves the salt and grease) after a long day would’ve meant a lot.

In turn, we needed to see Oliver being more open and honest with Felicity about his past and how he felt going forward facing various challenges (both as the mayor and Green Arrow). We saw a promising glimpse of that in 5x02 when he mentioned the Bratva to her.

Originally posted by lyricalarrow

However, he reverted to old habits in 5x04 when he lied about rescuing Dig. Maybe Felicity does need to be the one to make the first move and give Oliver a sign that she’d be open to giving him a second chance, but it’s a total Catch-22. Oliver can’t make a move until Felicity is ready, but Felicity probably won’t be ready until she sees an actual positive change in Oliver.

Unfortunately, I don’t think we’ve seen that positive change yet. If anything, it seems to me like the writers have regressed Oliver yet again (maybe even more than in the past). Having him apologize and doggedly pursue another woman who isn’t even worthy of the effort sends the wrong message. Watching Oliver do this for another woman (one that Felicity knows is shady and has hurt people she’s cared about) does not communicate to Felicity that he’s thinking clearly or learned from past mistakes. I won’t even get into Oliver asking her to help him fix things with EWR, because there aren’t enough words to describe my utter disgust with that move. I think it hurt Felicity way more than she let on to see Oliver fighting for someone else but not even attempting to apologize to her for his lies or obliviousness to her pain after he “killed” Billy. In seeing Oliver put his own needs above hers yet again, I think it became the deciding factor (or last straw) in Felicity seeking support elsewhere and joining Helix. And until we see Oliver man up and stop being so self-absorbed, the “rebuild” just isn’t going to be effective.

Oliver and Felicity do love each other. They’re soulmates. No one can convince me otherwise. Seeing the 4x16 script reaffirmed the deep love they shared, and I’m not saying they can’t get back to that. But it’s going to take time and effort. I think a single conversation won’t be enough to fix them this time. The reason Season 2 and, yes, Season 3 (despite the angst) were so great for Olicity was because the subtle moments (though they tortured us at times) slowly added up and fit perfectly into the big picture of their relationship. The rebuild has to be the same way and, personally, too much bad drama in Season 5 has happened for me to feel good about a reunion just yet. Oliver still has to be a better man so that he can realistically pull Felicity out of the darkness that’s consuming her. Blind optimism (blatantly trusting the wrong people) is not living in the light, and his actions have to start reflecting the change he’s claiming to make. It’s the only way he can even deserve the possibility of a second chance with Felicity. Right now, I’m hoping that by the finale Olicity have grown individually and we get an ending similar to Season 2 where there’s a strong indication of a reunion coming in Season 6.

Will the writers actually do this? Who knows?! The Olicity love is definitely there and if the writers know what’s good for them (and their ratings), they’ll quit their failed experiment and actually embrace the elements that made this show so successful in the first place. How this plays out will be a mystery until the finale but what’s an absolute necessity for me as a viewer is seeing Oliver get out of his own way and fight for the woman he loves. Felicity deserves it. Oliver deserves it. We deserve it. And it’s totally okay to not accept anything less…

Originally posted by organas

im tired anyway here’s some more time travel fic

Everything goes the way it does in the books, except that occasionally someone looks up and Neil isn’t there and the air smells a bit like burning, but then they blink and he’s right back in front of them. The Ravens switch divisions. Neil and the monsters go to Eden’s Twilight. Neil pays someone to knock him out. He hitchhikes back to Palmetto. He tells Andrew his half-truths and whole lies. They go on Kathy Ferdinand’s show. He fights Riko. Andrew offers Neil his protection.

It goes the same. Sometimes Neil travels in time and space, sometimes only in time. Usually to somewhere around Andrew, except he hates Andrew, so for the most part, Neil stays away, even when Andrew is an angry-looking kid, even when Andrew is a calm-looking adult.

Until one day, when he gets whisked into a bedroom in the middle of the night and the figure on the bed stirs.

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First You Fall

Maisie Dalton fixed things.  And Niall Horan was definitely broken.

Chapter 1

Did anyone’s day ever go well without coffee?  Maisie Dalton’s sure didn’t.  Walking through the streets of downtown Los Angeles in six inch heels was always an adventure but without the promise of a large cup of coffee in her future, it was positively horrifying.  She’d grown accustomed to the disgusting cat calls from construction workers as she walked by, some days she wondered if these men had ever been in the presence of a female before.  What woman was honestly going to respond to, “Hey Baby, lookin’ hot today.  Wanna ride me home?”

Unbelievable.

She curled her fingers around the cold steel of the handle on the huge glass door to her office building.  Some days opening that heavy ass door was harder than others.  This day was definitely the latter.

Before she’d taken two steps into the lobby she had a large cup of something shoved into her face while her assistant, Grant tried to help get her coat off.  Maisie breathed a sigh of relief as she lifted the cup to her lips,

“You’re a lifesaver.”  

Grant opened his mouth to protest but was quickly silenced when Maisie gagged.  She looked up at him, her mouth twisted in confusion,

“What the hell is in this?”

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I haven’t posted fic in a bit, even though I’ve been writing a lot. So…. here’s a thing I typed up because Fuck The Cold.

Familiar!AU random fluff. 

Keep reading

JAKE IN SCANDAL AT!

I can talk for weeks about this episode! Another thought:

The results of the Olitz break-up in S5 lead many Olitzers to rest on misconceptions about it’s demise. Olivia was blamed for everything, and if she’d only given them a chance, she would have been very happy in wedded bliss with Fitz. They greatly believed that Jake and her father’s presence in her life pulled her out of the light to help create the Olitz problems and prevented her return to Fitz. As we know, Shonda has been shedding a hard light on the core of people’s nature and the nature of their relationships. It seems to me that part of the motivation for this is to finally address misconceptions, and this 100th episode did just that. Shonda gave Olitzers all that they have been begging for and complaining about, WHILE staying true to her own intentions for the story.

Shonda presented our Scandal characters at their core being the exact same people shed of Defiance; drastic, external lifestyles didn’t alter that. However, the one important person missing in Olivia’s what if imagination was Jake. Yes, he had a moment with Fitz, BUT, for Olivia’s ride-or-die partner in real life, who has been by her side the entire time, a man she shanked for and boldly faced her father as COMMAND for, for the very first time in her entire life, it was interesting that he was seemingly a blip in his own partners thoughts, nearly nonexistent. In a promo released the day of the episode, where tons of scenes were flashed, it ended with Jake and Olivia talking about standing in the sun, together. We also saw the island scene of them with Olivia wearing her natural hair proud and free! Now, the episode opened up with Olivia caught between idealism - Fitz, and Jake - realism. Fitz says, it’s my way or the highway in choosing Cyrus, but Jake doesn’t give her a rigid ultimatum, he simply provides his OPINION to his partner, which motivates Olivia to think on her own and eventually come to her OWN decision/opinion in choosing Cyrus. Even though we are witnessing the struggle between the men on the decision of Mellie or Cyrus in the WH or how to remove the power players, the underlying decision of Olitz and Olake is THERE! Shonda put this there purposely. She is always speaking on this struggle since it’s a great metaphor in highlighting the struggle between Olivia’s own two sides of idealism and realism, power and normal. Olitz and Olake reflect Olivia’s own personal journey. And, here we are at the decision episode.

So, how does this underlying decision transfer into Olivia’s thoughts after both men leave the office, when Jake is seemingly a blip in it? So little a blip, that you might as well say he was not there at all, not even interacting for a Nano second with Olivia in some random but telling path cross or something. WELL, I believe Shonda DID have Jake all up and through there in hidden, most subtle ways, functioning under the radar of Olitzers who would find a way to blame Jake for any negativity expressed between Olitz, missing Shonda’s point in wanting us to focus on Olivia and Fitz’s OWN problems. Not problems caused by outsiders or other external factors, but their OWN internal problems. But, if we can watch closely with an open and unbiased eye, we can see Jake is subtly there. Shonda has to find a way to isolate Olitz in allowing people to see the truth of the fantasy allowed to run its course, but also stay true to her desire to speak on Olivia’s internal struggle, mirrored through Olitz and Olake. You can’t have anyone else who is questionable around the uber fantasy play out, giving viewers the opportunity to attach blame when they see things don’t work out as expected between the love birds. Scandal media history has faithfully shown, it will happen since Olitz is simply too much soul-mates in love not to be fabulous, lol!!! At least, not to experience a very happy marriage filled with being IN LOVE. 

So, how does Shonda accomplish all this?  1. Give the uber fantasy, bells, whistles and all in a wedding mirroring Fitz’s uber romantic proposal. 2. Put Olivia in a beautiful, traditional, princess wedding gown, the likes of which many have witnessed in photo shopped images of Oliva in wedding gowns on social media. 3. DON’T bring in any nay sayers to the union, and DON’T delay the dream! They rushed to the dream: Fitz is married, looses presidency, divorced, BAM, at Olivia’s door in no time ready to marry her, they have sex, wedding bells are ringing. Give it to them, and give it to them now! 4. Briefly, and realistically, show her father by being at the wedding, unhappy, to eventually slither out the door, never to be in Olivia’s presence again. Eli is not an issue. 5. Mellie has nothing to say until the wedding is already underway. She’s miserable, kicked to the side, can’t believe he did it, it’s over. 6. Jake is NOWHERE in plain sight. That’s it. It’s smooth Olitz sailing from her on. As one Olitzer tweeted, it was so wonderful, everything they always wanted, in the beginning. 

So, where is Jake’s hidden presence? In 3 major places: 1. Olivia’s natural hair (which many of you talked about). 2. Marcus 3. The fact that Olivia did not want to travel like a rock star and live in some “huge and expensive” (as she put it) Vermont like home somewhere on Mt. Olympus, depending on Fitz’s money. Fitz wanted to blow off work and play in the upper crust sandbox, but Olivia wanted to go to work! Money is no object, Fitz informed her, but Olivia wanted normal living, working, earning, and making things happen for herself. She did not want to be a kept wife riding her husband’s riches. Jake left Olivia’s apartment to establish his own base in S4 since he told Liv he will not be a kept man. She liked her own, modest apartment. Olivia wanted NORMAL; what is considered mediocre to Fitz’s way of life. The scene when Abby shows up to Olivia’s cheap looking office area; you can tell Abby looks down on it a bit, but Olivia didn’t mind it at all. 4. The OLAKE SEXY/TANGO scene slightly adjusted for Olitz! It was flipped for Fitz to show up in finding Olivia at her door when it was Jake at the door, Olivia displays the same brush off attitude she gave to Jake - playing hard to get. She acts as if she doesn’t care, and you think that Jake is going to leave on the elevator the way Olivia let the elevator doors close on her, but at the VERY last surprising minute, Olivia flips in rushing to both men! Fitz even lifted Olivia up with her legs wrapped around Fitz’s waste, just like with Jake, ending with the door pound of Olivia’s back against it! It was a nod to JAKE and Olake! Another nod to Jake was Olivia wearing a leather jacket, just like Jake! I remember looking like, wow… Olivia in a leather Jacket. It felt odd but I liked it! But, I now realize it was a nod to Jake.

Elaborating just a bit on #1, the natural hair. We all know Olivia only wore that with Jake. There was one time she was in the shower with Fitz when her hair naturally wet and hanging due to the water, but I noticed that, when Cyrus burst into the room to find her and Fitz the next day still in bed, it was all straightened out. She put that flatiron to it before going to bed with Fitz since I don’t believe she felt comfortable with her hair dry, a bit puffier, and not hanging with Fitz. How many women has been with their boyfriend overnight, and you make sure your face and hair are on point while in the bed with him! I can see her doing her hair in private while Fitz is in bed waiting or watching television, whatever. But, with Jake, she has no problem wearing it natural and free. The natural has always been associated with Olake.  Lastly, to elaborate a bit on #2, Marcus. Marcus represented Jake in being a partner next to her that she seems most equal to, compatible with. They even had Marcus dance with Olivia! They seemed so compatible and happy around one another that Fitz accused her with sleeping with Marcus. Fitz felt threatened by Marcus just like he felt threatened by Jake in real time. Abby even looks at them questionably when she finds them dancing together; she came to discuss Olivia being a better wife to Fitz. Abby admitted that Fitz was a disaster, but because he is her husband, she believes Liv should try. I felt the Jake qualities within him so much. Liv even did that giddy jumping up and down like when she saw that Jake was about to dance with her. I remember thinking before likening him to Jake that, if Liv weren’t married, I can see her and Marcus getting together. Jake was by her side the whole time in the AT, quietly, as usual. Had Jake played in Marcus’s position, he’d have just been allocated some of the blame for the poor marriage. With Marcus put in the equal partnership-like role, people won’t associate them as harboring romantic feelings, since Marcus and Liv have none of that vibe in real time. He loves Mellie.

anonymous asked:

Running hug? Lol, I have no idea what that's supposed to be but it just gave me two of the funniest mental images. 1: Lance sprinting through the castle trying to hug everyone as fast as he can for some reason. This nearly puts them all into healing pods as a result because he doesn't actually slow down at any point. The second half of this isn't going to fit so I'll have to make another ask for part 2.


Haha, I meant, like, the hug in the movies where the two people run at each other across a wheat field or whatever and fling themselves into each other’s arms, but this was actually way more fun.  Thanks for requesting it!


Lance found Hunk first, which was good, because when he barreled into his best friend, Hunk hugged him back and didn’t seem too concerned when Lance let go and raced off again.

Shiro was equally willing to be hugged, wrapping his arms bewilderedly around Lance before he could back away and run on to his next teammate.  "What’s that for?“ he asked, sounding bemused.

"I’ll explain later!” Lance declared, running off again.  Two down.  

He slammed into Keith two corridors later, almost knocking both of them over.  Keith squawked, offended, and tried to squirm out of Lance’s grasp.  "What are you doing?“

"Later!” Lance said, letting him go and taking off again.  Three.  Out of four?  Six?  Seven?  Lance suddenly realized he hadn’t asked who, exactly, he was supposed to be hugging, but he figured it was better to err on the side of caution.

Pidge would be in her hangar, but everyone else would be on the bridge, so he went there first, pushing his legs to run faster.  Why was the castle so big?  Usually it was good having a little room to split up so they weren’t all on top of each other, but as his lungs started burning, it seemed a little excessive.

When he burst onto the bridge, he went for Coran first.  As he’d half expected, Coran caught him without questioning it, squeezing him back.  "What’s wrong, Number 2?“

"Nothing!”  Lance said, extricating himself and jogging more casually over toward Allura “I just have to hug everyone in the castle within the next four minutes, is all.”

Allura let him hug her, patting him awkwardly on the back.  "What?  Why?  What are you talking about?“

He shrugged her off, running up to Kolivan, who glowered at him so hard that Lance couldn’t bring himself to give him a real hug and settled for an awkward side hug instead, dashing away as fast as he could so that he could both get to Pidge and avoid any retaliation from the enormous Galra.

"I’ll explain later!”

It was a relief to be out of the room, and an even bigger relief to only have one more friend to rescue.  He wished he could take Pidge’s zipline to her hangar, but he suspected the Castle wouldn’t let him and raced down the long way instead, running until he had a stitch in his side.

When he burst into the hangar, Pidge looked up, surprised, from where she was sitting on the floor working on something.  Lance dashed toward her and dove forward, sliding the last few feet on his knees while Pidge’s eyes widened and her hands came up to stop him.  He managed to get his arms around her anyway, knocking them both over into a pile of limbs on the floor.

“What the heck, Lance?” she asked disgruntledly, half squashed under him, “Get off!”

He pushed himself off the tiniest paladin, and righted himself, taking a deep breath in relief.  "Sorry.  Slav said I had to hug everyone in the castle in the next 10 minutes or the likelihood of all of us dying in a horrible accident went up by, like, 60%.  That’s more than half!“

"Lance, Slav is crazy,” Pidge grumbled, sitting up.  "You could have broken my new BLIP tech sensor!“

"Yeah, but he’s also a genius, so-”

“A crazy genius.  Did he even tell you why you had to hug us?  What could possibly have gone wrong that a hug would prevent?”

“That’s … actually a good question.”

“So why don’t you go ask him, and get out of my lab?”

Lance snorted.  "Yeah, fine.  I didn’t want to be in your crummy lab anyway.   I was just trying to save your life.  It’s not a big deal or anything.“

Pidge rolled her eyes, but Lance didn’t want to make a whole fight out of it, so he stormed off instead.

He hadn’t gone far in the other direction before Slav whipped around a corner and flung all eight of his arms around Lance.  "You forgot to hug me!” he exclaimed “That was almost a disaster!”

Lance wrapped his arms around Slav in return, heart skipping a beat.  "Oh no!  Did we make it in time?“

Slav thought for a minute, still clinging to the front of Lance’s armor.  "Yes, I think so.”

Lance sighed in relief again.  "Good.  Why’d I have to do that, anyway?“

"You’re blue!” Slav explained, staring intently at the blue V in front of his face, “Blue has a frequency of 606-668 terahertz!  Very protective frequency range.  Cancels out the waves of negative thoughts.”

“Wait - negative thoughts?”  Lance’s face fell.

“Yes.  I had been caught in a web of fear.  Shiro says I should not get caught up in fear, and I think he is right.  Makes too much negative energy.  Needs 606 terahertz to cancel it out.”

Lance groaned.

“Do not worry, Blue Paladin,” Slav said.  "You should only have to hug everyone a few times a week to keep them safe.  Maybe once a day if there are a lot of dangers for me to think about.“

Suddenly, "explaining later” seemed like a much harder task than it had before.  Maybe he should just walk around the castle with Slav attached to his front and let Slav explain instead.  The alien showed no sign of letting go any time soon, anyway.

anonymous asked:

Future Bawson au: it's the final pitch for the World Series and Ginny has so much on her mind, yet somehow winning that ring doesn't seem to be as net wracking as figuring out a way to tell her catcher he's going to be papa; and it still amazes her that Evelyn's managed to keep her secret even from Blip.

Oh geez. I just got done writing a fic with the World Series in it (which will be out sometime in the nearish future?) but I’m still having a lot of feelings about Mike Lawson and Ginny Baker, World Series Champions and soulmates, so that’s why this turned into more of a fic than an AU synopsis/blurb like i’ve been doing.


Ginny couldn’t say whether she wanted to puke from nerves or morning sickness, which Evelyn had told her wasn’t kind enough to restrict itself to the mornings. Still, it was one thing to be told and another to experience

As she made her way out to the mound from the bullpen, Blip offering her a salute as she jogged by, Ginny couldn’t help but think that being asked to make only her fourth career appearance as a reliever for the save in the most important game of her life probably trumped the embryo currently incubating inside her. Then again, she’d never bothered to pay much attention in Human Bio. 

She managed to climb the hill without hurling chunks, which was great, but the sight of her catcher crouching behind the plate for her warm ups made her reassess just how settled her stomach was. Mike’s eyes on her were focused, intense, and completely unsuspecting of the microscopic bundle of cells that he was half responsible for. God, how was she going to tell him?

All through her eight warm up pitches, intrusive, unhelpful thoughts swirl through Ginny’s head. What if Mike wasn’t happy when she finally told him about the three pregnancy tests sitting in a ziploc bag in her suitcase? What if she let the runner behind her back, standing on second and chatting easily with Melky, score and tie up the game? What is she gave up a homer and lost the Padres their first bid at a World Series title? What if she vomited here and now? What if she actually did it and the guys tried to tackle her in celebration? What if she hit the ground too hard? What if, what if, what if?

Suddenly, the eighth pitch was out of her hand and in Mike’s glove. Rather than toss it back, he trotted out to her to hand it over and go over a strategy. 

“One out, that’s all you need,” he said, like she wasn’t perfectly aware of where the game stood. Padres up by one run, two outs, the tying run on second.

Still, Ginny nodded back, holding out her glove for him to hand over the ball. 

He didn’t though, just eyeing her as intensely as ever, but a little suspiciously, too. “You good, Baker?”

She remembered how he’d said nearly the same thing after the first time they’d fallen into bed. She remembered how she’d felt loose and boneless, Mike’s big hand sprawled in the small of her back. She remembered how his lips brushed against the curve of her shoulder as he murmured, “You good, Gin?” soft and tender and just about everything she’d ever wanted from him but hadn’t expected.

A few hard blinks knocked her out of the memory. She wasn’t out of it enough to press her hand to her stomach or even hint at her news here. Not with a million cameras trained on them and pundits speculating on what they were talking about. 

Instead, she nodded back, sharp and assured this time, and echoed her own response. 

“We’re good.”

Mike’s chin tipped down to mark his acceptance. 

The sight filled her with confidence, so before he went, she said, “When I do this thing, make sure you’re the first one back out here, okay?” She didn’t explain further, but it wasn’t like Mike needed her to. It wasn’t often she made demands of him after all, and he hated letting her down.

“You’re delusional if you think I’d let anyone else get here before me,” he drawled, backing down the slope to get back to the plate.

From there, it was business as usual. 

And when, as usual, her screwball put the batter away and the stadium erupted in cheers, Ginny didn’t bother looking away from the man barreling towards her, his mask forgotten on the ground and arms spread wide for her. It was a relief finally letting herself be caught up in them, Mike hoisting her high in triumph.

As good as winning felt, and dear God did it feel amazing, the awestruck look on Mike’s face when he finally let her down long enough to tell him their news was almost better.

umlugarpraeuchamardemeu  asked:

Hey! How are you? So... I have this thing. Lena and Kara are together but they don't make a show of it, don't deny it, just don't confirme either. Kara shares with her some Krypton theory and they discuss it and Lena learned how to apply some of them. One day, some alien threatened earth and the DEO couldn't figure a better way to fight it without some sort of sacrifice, Kara is about to give herself, and while everybody's on the central room at DEO, Lena was figuring something out in... (1)

… in her lab. When she’s out, a lot of things happened, then Supergirl was about to give herself as sicrifice, when Lena tries to get in touch. When nobody answers her, she simply hacks on DEO system and get herself on the coms with Supergirl and everybody hears she giving Kara the solution and her own threat: “i told you I was going to figure it out, if you’re no in bed with me when I wake up tomorrow, Kara Zor-El, I’ll find you in Rao’s light, just to bring you back and kill you… (2)   

       … with my bare hands. And if you never heard a Luthor’s threat, there’s your first one. I love you.” Everybody’s livid, Alex wants to take her in, J'onn want’s a chat with Lena and Winn is paralyzed… (3) Yeah… see, my thing… I don’t have vocabulary enough to make it, but could you be kind enough?!?            

hope this suffices!!

Hacked!

Read on AO3 - http://archiveofourown.org/works/10621098

“Kara, you don’t have to do this.”

Alex tries to keep her voice from cracking, but it’s almost impossible. Because Kara is out there, and she’s about to die (to save them all sure, but the thought does little to calm the dread swelling in her chest.

“But I do, Alex. I can’t let the people I love die. If that means sacrificing myself… “

“Kara, please.” Her voice does crack then, she practically chokes on the words. Normally she would be embarrassed about so many of her agents seeing her like this, but right now she doesn’t care.

“Alex, I love you. Please know that I love you. And please, tell Lena … “

Lena? What does Kara’s best friend have to do with any of this?

Was she behind this attack?

She swears to god that if she finds out Luthor is behind this, she will personally go down to L-Corp and -

Her ranting is cut off when Kara continues.

“Just tell Lena I love her.”

Keep reading

late 1x08 thoughts/overall season review

warning: me = pissed

(this is coming from a person who loved/stanned the show hardcore in the beginning)

- well folks, i finally realized what taboo is after all, as a show. it took me a while to grasp it, because i kept hoping it was smarter than it appeared to be. and y’know, some aspects of it were very well done, but the overarching purpose of this show was to serve as a ridiculous male escapist fantasy. that’s fucking it.

- i’d be fine with that if taboo had the guts to admit it. to bask in it, to glorify it, even. instead, it’s still trying to sell me on james delaney’s “damned” existence and his many trials and tribulations as an “underdog”. 

UNDERDOG

BITCH PLS. this is basically a choose-your-own-adventure where tom hardy is the smartest, coolest, bamfest dude in all of london, nay the world. he bamboozles everyone, he wins at everything, he’s the mastermind who can never be defeated and everyone bows down to his incredible talents. nothing, literally nothing, can stop him. superman is his side-hoe at this point. oh, he hears dead slaves singing to him? nah, don’t worry about it, the plot won’t ever explore that, it’s just there to give him surface nuance. see, our “damned” hero is not there just to chew scenery and look cool, he has baggage

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She’s On Fire

gif is not mine

Title: She’s On Fire

Characters: Lucifer x Reader, Sam, Dean

Word Count: 1,266

Warnings: Angst and Fluff

A/N: This wasn’t requested, but I did have a blip of inspiration when I wrote this! If you like it enough, I can make a part 2! Hopefully you all love this and enjoy it! Feeback is welcomed and appreciated! Have a great day, I love you all! <3 <3 *Also headcanons are still being accepted for the 500 follower celebration!*

When you walked into the abandoned house, you expected there to be a demon.  That’s where you followed it to.  However, there was no sign of them anywhere inside the house.  You made sure to text Dean of your whereabouts.  Every time you went on a hunt alone, you made sure to check in with them as often as possible.  It kept them at ease, especially your boyfriend, Lucifer.  

You checked all of the rooms on the first level with haste.  The upstairs was the last place to check for any sign of a demon.  As you headed up the stairs, there was the familiar smell of sulfur.  You took out your demon knife, cautiously walking through the hallway.  In the next second you were hit over the head and fell to the floor.  Your vision was blurry, but you could see where the demon was dragging you before you were rendered unconscious.  When you came to, you were tied to a chair.

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Stan stood on the back porch and watched as the rackety old spaceship blipped out of existence. He couldn’t help but grin at the flash of light; Ford had the biggest bitch fit when he found out about Rick and him. Stan had mentioned the possibility that Ford was jealous and his twin hadn’t spoken to him for a week.

Worth it.

He sat down hard in the swinging porch chair Soos and Henry had installed last year. He wasn’t getting any younger and neither was Rick but… well. The sex was still amazing.

The door opened and Henry stepped out, a beer for Stan in one hand and a glass of milk for himself in the other. Silently, Henry handed Stan his beer, and sat down next to him in the chair.

They sat in silence for a few minutes. There was something obviously on Henry’s mind; before.. before the twins he wouldn’t have even noticed, let alone waited for another person to spill their guts and get all touchy-feely on him. But a lot of things had changed since the Transcendence, and Stan was one of them.

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Impact (chapter 3)

“Oliver, are you serious?” Barry asked as they sat at a table in Big Belly Burger. “Do you know what you’re asking me to do?”

Oliver took a swallow from the glass of water in front of him.  “Barry, we’ve been here before. You went back to save everybody after Savage used that Staff. I don’t remember any major changes from that.”

Barry shook his head. “No,” he replied. “Except that you changed everything about your relationship with Felicity. Oliver, I tried to warn you that when someone or something messes with time, it fights back.”

Oliver felt the remorse and guilt from the time Barry mentioned. It tried to creep back into his heart. “Barry, my lie to Felicity was not because you went back and reset everything. That did not stop me from ignoring the second chance I got to make things right with her. I screwed that one up all by myself.”

“When I went back and saved my mother,” Barry added. “This whole timeline changed. I caused Cisco’s brother to die.” Barry lowered his head and fell back into that guilt. “I changed people’s lives, even Diggle’s. I took away his daughter. My life even changed. Into what, I still don’t know. But I had both my parents back and life was normal.”

Oliver listened to what Barry was saying. He knew asking Barry to go back and stop William from running out into the street could change the timeline again. But Oliver also knew that if he did nothing, William was going to die. He wasn’t sure if he could come back from that. Every time Oliver looked at his son, he was reminded of everything else he lost in his life that made him stand on the edge of pure grief. And if William should die, he would surely go over it. The only thing that might possibly save him, the only person, would be Felicity. Felicity’s refusal to accept his plan was the right one. Oliver was not ignorant to what could happen. But he felt it wasn’t a lie he would telling her this time. He wanted her to feel the same as he did—do whatever it takes to save lives. He felt more shame squeeze harder in his heart.

“Barry,” he rejoined the conversation. “I can’t think of any other way to save my son. I mean, we’re talking about going back just three days here. It’s just blip. How bad can things really get?”

“Well,” Barry answered. “First Felicity would kill me if I go along with this. Second, Iris would kill me if I go along with this. Cisco already hates me for what I did to his life. Caitlyn too. Oliver, I understand what you’re going through with William. If I had any control at all over changing things in the past, even three days ago, I would already be on my way to help you.”

Oliver felt the desperation and frustration grow larger in him.

“Oliver, did you…did you talk to Felicity about this?”

Oliver nodded. “Yeah, I tried to. She…she slapped my face.”

“Well, some things will never change,” Barry said to Oliver, smiling. But Oliver was a stone statue staring back. Barry knew that look and he began to shift in his chair. “Oliver, Felicity was right…uh, not slapping you…she was right to be afraid. Yet, you called me.”

Oliver did not respond.

“Oliver, I’m not trying to tell you how to live your life. I’m not telling you how to think and what to feel. But, well, the last time you went behind Felicity’s back…”

Barry!” Oliver’s voice rose a couple octaves and the couple in the booth next to them glanced over. Oliver lowered his voice. “Barry, Felicity is…she is feeling a ton of guilt over what happened to William. It wasn’t her fault…” Oliver stopped and let the shame wash over him even implying that it was. “If I can talk you into this, not only will William come back, but I can take Felicity’s…I can make everything alright.”

Barry was still not convinced. “Oliver, this is not a solution. I want to help you…lord knows you have gone that extra mile for me on several occasion. But the damage I could cause through Flashpoint would erase any good intentions you have. Felicity understands the risks. So does Iris and Cisco. Some of the choices I’ve made over the last year—I’m still living with the outcome.”

Oliver abruptly stood up. “Okay Barry,” he said in a constrained voice. “I get it. You’re afraid. Felicity is afraid. And Iris? You married her, Barry. That doesn’t seem to be such a horrible outcome. And Cisco, he’s a meta. You and he have a lot more in common than you think. The same thing with Caitlyn. This is what we do when we put on our masks. We fight against the darkness. We got out and save people. We make a difference, Barry. My son needs to be saved. Please, help me make a difference.

This time Barry had nothing to say.

Oliver took his wallet out and put $20.00 on the table. “I said I would buy you lunch. Go ahead and order something.”

“Oliver…”

But Oliver was already heading for the door.

**

Felicity was drifting in and out of sleep. She had pushed her chair closer to William’s bed. Looking at him, at his bruised face and battered body, Felicity wanted to take his pain away, wanted him to turn to her and smile.

But what Oliver was proposing only gave her more to worry about. Both of them seemed to be regressing over this crisis. They were letting fear and anger and guilt control their actions and reactions. That Oliver would even consider risking Flashpoint was shocking. Yet, she knew he was trying to save his son. She knew the lengths he would go to to save those closest to him. Felicity had been his motivation on a number of occasions. Oliver was trying to take an impossible situation and find the best way out of it. Felicity had told him that is one the reasons he is the man she loves. But having Barry attempt time travel, to go back and change what happened, scared her more than losing William.

William was probably not going to survive his injuries. That loss will push Oliver to the edge, maybe over it this time. He has spent the last six years saving people lives, hers included. But no one had ever saved Oliver. Oliver saved Oliver. Yes, she and John had shown him the way, but it was Oliver who made the decisions and took the actions. Was this one of those actions?

Suddenly, Felicity started to think about their night together in Nanda Parbat. She felt her love for him bring surety into her heart. She would always have that. It was a comfort zone for her whenever darkness and pain came into her life. She thought of how gentle Oliver was with her, how he softly said her name while passionately kissing her. She could see their naked bodies entwined as they brought one another to an ecstasy neither had ever known before. It was part of who she is, as it is a part of who Oliver is. It was not a memory for them. It was a light; a bright light that illuminated their hearts to each other. It was their essence. And William had become part of that joy. That night, and afterwards, was during another crisis. Oliver was giving up his life to save Thea. Felicity was not on board with that plan either. She was willing to bring the entire League of Assassins down on her to save Oliver. All she could think about was that she was not going to lose him.

Oliver’s time travel plan was not the direction she was willing to go in. She did not want to risk losing both him and William. Baby Sara turned into a boy named John, Jr. Felicity didn’t want Oliver to turn into some kind of warped person, like Black Siren and the whole Laurel debacle. Or even worse, Flashpoint could erase both Oliver and William.

So Felicity was in a quandary. One side of her did not want to have anything to do with Oliver’s certainty of his bad plan. And the other side was asking herself how was jeopardizing the entire company in Nanda Parbat any different than Oliver risking Flashpoint?

She reached out and gently took William’s hand. “I’m sorry,” she whispered. “But I can’t let your father make all this worse. Even if…even if you die or not.”

Felicity felt tears start to fall as she realized she was saying goodbye to William.

**

Barry paid for the cup of coffee he ordered and left Big Belly Burger.

He understood Oliver’s desperation and how he thought saving his son would make everything worth it.  Barry had the same thoughts when he went back to save his mother. Oliver was family too. He always will be. But what he was asking was not a place Barry wanted to go. He had already caused enough damage.

There was that part of Barry, (with Oliver’s help) where he made the connection all superheroes make—there is a reason why he was given his powers, why he was able make a difference. Oliver told him this just after Barry came out of his coma and discovered those powers. It is a responsibility, Oliver said to him. By helping others, you help yourself.

So Barry was conflicted as he slowly walked away from Big Belly. Could it be possible? Maybe he could control Flashpoint this time. Maybe without the emotional influence he had when he went back for his mother, maybe he could focus closer on the timeline?

Maybe, what if, possibly—questions and uncertainties went through Barry’s mind as he fought against both denying and helping his friend.

Then a sudden thought broke through all his other racing ones. It was clarity. And a plan, an answer that everyone could live with. Barry stopped on the sidewalk. The plan began to form and he was speechless that none of them had even thought of it. It was the first and only thought Oliver and Felicity had—Flashpoint. There’s no other way. Barry, you need to risk your soul. Barry was both scared and ecstatic. He could fix everything without changing anything.

Barry resumed walking down the sidewalk, but he picked up the pace a bit. Seven miles and fifteen seconds later, Barry stood in front of Star City Hospital. First, he was going to have to do something Oliver could not. He was going to convince Felicity. He was going to remind her that some things were worth fighting for, no matter what the impact of the fight might bring.

Barry walked into the hospital, his mind racing at supersonic speed.

@hope-for-olicity @louiseblue1 @tdgal1 @dmichellewrites @lovelycssefan @miriam1779 @goofy-mouse11 @it-was-a-red-heeler @c0bra5nak3

Winchester Tradition

Request:
OMG I loved your last imagine so much!!!! I’m honestly worried about Mary coming back because I write myself into the show as Sam and Dean’s younger sister and I’m hoping I can still do it with Mary (or mom) back. Yes… I’m that weird. Anyway, if your still doing requests, I was wondering if you could do one similar one where your Sam and deans little sister who’s 16 and meets Mary, her mom, for the first time? So that Mary died in her nursery instead of Sam’s. Thank you so much!
Weird? I ahve aN ENTIRE BLOG dedicated to it xD. Thanks for requesting and I hope you don’t mind I chnged it to a written as I got a tad carried away whoops

A/N: Just a heads up that in this Sam didn’t get “shot” and that weird English lady (remember her?) doesn’t exist.


The drive back to the bunker was silent. Not awkward, though. A comforting silence broken just by Baby’s low hum. You stared out of the window, it was dark out and that somehow made everything so much more unreal. Amara. Chuck. …Dean…Even Cas was with you both. 

Sam drove, focusing on the road and no doubt thinking as much as you were. Cas was in the back with you, maybe out of respect. You appreciated it either way. 

When you arrived back you got out and headed to the front, not waiting up for anyone. You walked down the steps and slumped your backpack on the floor before Sam or Cas had made it in the building and headed off to your room. Sat on your bed, staring at nothing, you heard what must have been Sam’s footsteps as he neared your room. He paused outside for a bit before opening the door. You didn’t look up but you did feel a dip in the bed when he sat down next to you.He then wrapped his arms around you and brought you in close. You hugged him back, closing your eyes in attempt to fight back tears but it didn’t do much. Crying, you felt him hug you tighter and he pressed a kiss to your head. 

After along time of silence you spoke up. “Where’s Cas?”

“I don’t know…he said something about a matter of importance and just went…”
“He’s coming back, right?” You looked up at Sam for the first time. Your wide eyes needing someone to tell you someone was gonna stick around. He’d been crying too. “Course.” 



Almost five days had gone by and you hadn’t seen Cas since. You were reading one of your favourite books. You’d been busying yourself more lately, wanting something to take your mind off things. You smiled when you thought about how Dean would tease you for reading. 


You’d been in your room for the last four days and only now had you ventured into the library, You were sat on one of the comfy chairs, your legs hanging off the arm rest. You hadn’t even noticed Sam come in but he got up to go get his laptop charger. You looked up from the pages and he shot you a smile as he walked across the room.“Sam. Y/N.” A gruff voice made you both turn your heads to see Cas. Only, he was covered in blood. Hopefully not his.


“Cas, where the hell have you been?” Sam sounded more concerned than angry.
“It’s Dean.”
You stood up.
“He’s alive. And that’s not all-”
“How? How did he survive that?” You ask.
“Because it never happened. My Father and Amara sorted themselves out.”
“So why hasn’t he called?”
“He’s been in Hospital. Look I need to tell you something else.”
“What is it?” Sam gave up on hovering in the door way and came to stand next to you.


“Your Mum’s back as well. She’s with Dean.”
You stared wide eyed at Cas. Your Mum had died when you were three years old on your nursery ceiling. You’d always blamed yourself for this and sometimes you wondered if your Dad did too. But this was…no…this was insane.


You and Sam sat impatiently in the waiting room. Sam was bouncing his leg up and down and you didn’t have the energy to tell him to stop. 
A Doctor walked out and nodded at you two, managing a “He’ll be fine…” as you both hurried past him and raced off to Ward 25.

You almost fell into the room when your eyes didn’t know where to look first. Your big brother was strapped up to so many machines it was terrifying. One blip in the system and his life could go down with them. He had tubes aiding his breathing and he looked strangely peaceful for being in such a dangerous state.


You then saw Cas, he was talking to…”Mum?” Sam sounded so taken back to be saying it again.Your Mum stood up, her blonde hair neatly sitting round her shoulders and her heartmelting smile making you want to cry with relief and confusion. Only at this point, the questions could wait. 

Sam raced over and hugged his Mum. You watched and couldn’t help but feel slightly awkward. You couldn’t remember her at all. After all, you were only three when she died. And it was sort of your fault. You’d never had the chance to say ‘Mum’ to her and now it felt…wrong.Y

ou walked over to Dean and watched his heart monitor. He was still out cold but the Doctor said he’d be okay. You focused on the beeps it made, not wanting to make things awkward when your Mum’s kind voice broke the steady rhythm. “Y/N?” She sounded so hopeful you wanted to apologise for being such a mess but before you could even turn to look at her she embraced you in a hug. You stood frozen for a few seconds before hugging back.
“Look at you.” She whispered to herself in amazement.
She broke apart and tilted her head “You hunt too right? I’m not down for my kids growing up to be hunters but if the boys are gonna do it we need a girl to keep em in their place.” She smirked.

Sam laughs and you nod “Yeah I do.”

“Good.” She smiled.


You sat in Ward 25. Perched on the end of the bed as you stared into the steady monitor. You couldn’t look away, it was as though your stare was controlling it. If you stopped maybe his heart would too.

You knew it was stupid. But you still went with it.

Sam had gone back to the bunker with your Mum to get her settled in. He came over with Cas sometimes to make sur eyou and Dean were okay. You stayed however, the Doctors had put out a bed for you but you didn’t really sleep. 

You had a hot chocolate from the machine, Cas had been watching over you for Sam and insisted you drank something.
Your gaze on the monitor was broken by slight movement in the corner of your eye. You glanced down at your older brother and his hand twitched again.
“Dean?” You whispered, watching his eyes.

Slowly but surely, they blinked open and you sighed with relief, letting out a breath. “Dean!” You grinned.

He frowned, pulling the tubes away from him and sitting up slightly before grinning back. “Hey, Kiddo.”
You hugged him and he hugged back. You didn’t want to let go. You and Sam had convinced yourself he was gone for good this time.

Winchester tradition.

“Where’s Sammy? And Cas?..And-” He paused as though considering whether to drop the ‘Mum’ word.

“Mum?” You finished for him, smirking. “They’re at the bunker. Cas is normally here with me. Sam comes sometimes but Mum needed a proper bed to sleep in. After all she’s been dead for a few years or so.” 

“So everyone’s okay?” He sounded amazed at that.

You nod.

“And you stayed? Y/N…”

“I wanted to.”

“You’re adorable.” He chuckled before ruffling your hair. 

“Dean, I’m sixteen not four.” You roll your eyes.

“You’re still my little sister…Come on then squirt,, let’s get out of here.”


“Y/N! Dinner’s ready!” Dean called.

“Okay!” You shout, pausing the game. You stand up and stretch, not realising how tiring it was lying around all day.

The moment you open the door you smell the familiar takeaway aroma. You slip your phone out and swipe through your notifications as you ambled over to the table.

You put it back into your pocket when Dean lightheartedly hit your head, shot him a pout and sat down opposite Sam, Dean next to Sam and your Mum came and sat next to you.

You dug in, you and your brothers filling your Mum in on how you managed to start the apocalypse, free lucifer, become somewhat allies with the king of hell, and die about four or five times each.

She listened in amazement, laughing as you and Dean did your usual sass-off with each other. 

“John raised you three right.” She smiled and you said nothing, sharing a glance with Sam.
You hadn’t taken in the fact she’d lost someone too.

“He sure did.” Dean nodded.


A/N: The ending isn’t John hate. It’s just some writing. Not my opinion.

I do not own these gifs

Wingman

Originally posted by world-of-color

Incorporating these imagines: Imagine being the newest pilot in Poe’s squadron and being really unsure about how good of a pilot you are. When Poe notices he immediately takes you under his wing and helps you become more confident + Imagine BB-8 trying to set you up with Poe + Imagine that BB-8 is the only one who knows about your crush on Poe

Thanks to the fabulous @drabbletastic for the beta read :) 

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goodbyewrites  asked:

bawson prompt - something inspired by the song roses by james arthur pretty please

Love is in the little things. Ginny never quite realized there wasn’t a big moment or declaration of feelings. Too many episodes of Friends and romantic comedies featuring middle aged actors, combined with a lack of actual romantic experience outside of those small moments she managed to sneak for herself – all managed to create this delusion that love, romantic declarations… their big things. Said to a woman as the rain is pouring down and she’s facing some kind of identity crisis.

(It takes six months with Mike to realize love is in the little things.)

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Below is a copy of an interesting interview with Natalia Osipova, by Sarah Crompton.

Photo is by Nigel Nortington.

Long hair flying, arms pumping, hips wriggling, the great Russian ballerina Natalia Osipova is giving her all to a go-go dance, 1960’s style. She looks incredibly happy. Across the rehearsal room, her on stage partner, and off stage lover, Sergei Polunin is doing the same, struggling to synchronise his jutting peacock head with his swinging arms.

“It’s like marking your territory,” says the choreographer Arthur Pita, as he explains the pattern of the complex syncopated steps. Osipova giggles. She has an infectious laugh and a broad smile, that when it breaks, softens her serious, dainty features. In this room, with the man she loves, making a new work written for her by a leading contemporary dance maker for a run at Sadler’s Wells starting next month, she is in her element. “This project is important for me,” she says. “This is my dream, and how I have chosen to express my personality.”

It has been a rollercoaster year for the dancer. First there is her relationship with Polunin, the charismatic bad boy who stormed out of the Royal Ballet in 2012, pursued by stories of drug taking and unhappiness. They finally made their relationship public at a press conference to announce the Wells project in November 2015. It has changed her life, but it hasn’t always been easy. “I think we have both changed - a feeling as strong as this one changes people,” she says. “We were both quite independent, professionally and otherwise, but now we have made some sacrifices. And it wasn’t always easy. We argued quite a lot, and sometimes we thought we shouldn’t live together, we don’t have to go through all that. But as it turned out, we can’t live without each other for more than two days. There must be something he gives me and I give him that we couldn’t find anywhere else.”

She laughs again, slightly embarrassed. “Probably this is something that everyone who is in love says. We have been together just a year, and it is probably not enough to make conclusions… But this is the way it is at the moment.”

The couple met last summer. Osipova was making a guest appearance away from the Royal Ballet - which she had joined full time just after Polunin left it - and needed someone to dance Albrecht opposite her Giselle at La Scala, Milan. Her mother suggested Polunin; she was more apprehensive when the couple started to go out. “Though now she loves him to bits,” Osipova says. “When we got together, people thought I had gone off the rails. Everybody gave me a piece of advice. But I have always done what I wanted. And if my heart tells me this is the way I should do it, then I do it this way”.

She told me this back in January. By April, when we meet again, in the rehearsal room at the Place dance centre in Bloomsbury, the relationship feels fully established. The couple are working on one of the duets they will perform this month in the Sadler’s Wells programme, and again at the Edinburgh International Festival in August. In breaks, she lies across Polunin’s legs, teasing him gently in whispered Russian, touching him tenderly on the cheek. They clearly enjoy working together. “I think as artists we have to dance together, and together we could come up with many interesting projects,” Osipova says simply.

This piece, about a young couple in love who encounter tragedy, is one of their first joint projects. The second is a more abstract duet by Russell Maliphant, which is joined on the programme by a trio choreographed by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui for Osipova and two male dancers, Jason Kittelberger and James O'Hara.

Polunin has said he wants only to dance with Osipova. She is more pragmatic, while longing for the opportunities for them to perform together to expand. “I find it quite interesting to be with him on stage, because I think I am quite a strong person as a performer, and I find it difficult to find a man who is equally strong. I quite often dictate and tell them what to do,” she says, the words rushing out in quick Russian. She pauses while they are translated, then continues. “I like to take my partners hand and tell him how I feel. But with Sergei, he can do the same to me. He can tell me his story. It is a big thing. You don’t often come across a partner like that.”

Eventually, she hopes Polunin will be able to join her on stage at the Royal Ballet, the company at which he trained but then left in a blaze of headlines. She is committed to staying there. “Nothing has changed. Maybe they were a little bit worried when they thought I might leave as well,” she says, laughing. “But I am pretty sure this is my company, and I’m stable, sticking there. I think it is Sergei’s company as well. It used to be his home [Polunin moved from his native Ukraine to the Royal Ballet School in 2003, when he was 13], and his way of dancing and his style are so suitable for that place. I would be really happy if there was a chance for him to come and dance there - and I think the audience would as well.”

The second blip in her progress this past year with the Royal has been an injury sheet requiring regular cancellations and rests. “It was a strange season. I didn’t have a lot of energy. I felt tired,” she explains. Near its close, she dislocated her hip, which caused her to miss a number of performances, including several in Strapless, the ballet Christopher Wheeldon created around her. She managed to dance only one Giselle - her favourite classical ballet - and gave no sign of injury in her airy loveliness and deep, romantic intensity. But if you watch her rehearse on a video made by the Royal Ballet at the time, you can see her grimace as she moves her leg. Even today, there are moments when a spasm of pain crosses her face.

“My injuries make me quite upset, to be honest,” she says gravely. “But little victories make it better. I thought at one point I wouldn’t be able to dance for a year, but I am lucky so far that I have never had any injuries that have stopped me dancing completely. Sometime in performance, I feel pain, but that is familiar to millions of dancers.”

Her difficulties have made her reassess her workload; she has pulled out of summer performances in London with the visiting Bolshoi Ballet, the company she left in 2011. “The doctor told me that to achieve my standard again, I need to be clever and selective,” she says. “It is not nice for audiences if I am not at my standard.

In deciding to focus on what she describes as “the repertoire that’s interesting for me”, Osipova is - perhaps surprisingly - choosing to concentrate on dancing the classics while she is still in her prime. “I’m 29 now,” she says, pulling a face as if it is a very old age. “I think I probably have another 5 years. I haven’t done a lot of classics. I’ve done a lot of dramatic, character roles. But when you start carrying injuries, you realise all of a sudden that you won’t have as much time as you hoped.”

Surely she can carry on a bit longer? She pulls that expressive face. “Maybe 5 more years after that - and for those I will be dancing more dramatic roles.” For now, she is dividing her time between the very traditional and the contemporary. She acknowledges that shaping her body to works by choreographers such as Pita, Maliphant and Cherkaoui is difficult, but it is a challenge she is ready for.

“When people say that, for classically trained dancers, nothing is difficult, it’s not true. As a classical dancer, you are always told that when you have this tree inside of you” - she mimics the straight strength of a ballerina’s core position - “it helps you to get in every ballet position. In contemporary dance, you are full of fluidity, which is completely different. Everything moves in your body, and it’s great” - now she acts out extreme flexibility, waving her arms and legs for emphasis - “but the danger is, we don’t know this modern dance world, we are not trained in this. I look at dancers like James and Jason, and I don’t understand how they just fall on the floor so simply. I don’t know how to do that. Only when you move like that all day, in the evening you can fall the way they need you to fall.”

Cherkaoui has, however, been amazed by just how versatile Osipova has proved. “I have rarely seen anyone so strong,” he says. “Usually, when I am with ballet dancers’ they have very strong legs or very strong feet, but their arms are not as strong, or the back is a little bit too soft. But she is really powerful, and at the same time she is honest. She knows what the right thing to do is, beyond any sort of style. She just does what’s right. There is something about her. She absolutely makes new rules and is straightforward. There is a sense of devotion towards choreography that is extremely generous to a choreographer.”

Given what an extraordinary classical dancer she is, why does Osipova want to venture into a world where there are, as she admits, “so many people who could probably do it better than you”? She is quite clear in her response: “this is how I want to express my personality. To mix classical and contemporary. This is my wish.”

Such a statement implies boundless confidence in her abilities. Yet over a series of meetings, I begin to notice that the bravura brilliance she exudes on stage, the seeming strength that Cherkaoui values, is tempered by a much less assured personality.

“I’m not a confident person,” she says, pulling her face in mock despair. “But I am confident I will work my best. I will never dictate. I will do what the choreographer wants - and if necessary I will suffer. I sometimes get so nervous, I just want to run away before a show. And my mum says, ‘Well, OK, go and clean the streets then!’” She laughs at this expression of tough love. “The older I am, the more nervous I become, because I know people expect so much from me.”

She shrugs her shoulders at her own hopelessness. Watching her with Polunin, it’s clear she not only trusts and loves him, but admires his attitude to his career, which is so very different from her own anxiety.

“I just look at Sergei, and he says, ‘when I go on stage, I do it for myself, and I find that satisfying’ - and I learn from him. I think that is the best way of doing it. He is never worried. But maybe that is not the way I am. Maybe I need to be nervous to achieve what I achieve on stage. Maybe that’s what makes me happy.”

Bite (Part 7)

Taehyung x Jungkook x Reader
(Apearances by other members)
Vampire Smut AU
Word Count: 3,400
Warnings: Violence, Swearing

(Jungkook’s Perspective)

The car ride back to our house was tense between Namjoon and I as my displeasure radiated from me so powerfully, I’m certain it was palpable. My only thought, my only want, was to be with (Y/N) for as long as possible. Before it was too late, before fate inevitably tore us apart as it did with Yureum and I. Darkness surrounded us like a blanket as we drove in the night, the multicolor’s of street lights and signs blurring together with the wet drops that still lingered on the windows from a recent shower. I sat, arms crossed and looking into the distance, in Namjoon’s passenger seat, the other 4 boys in their own worlds behind me.

“I know you fed her your blood, I could smell it in her bloodstream. And Jimin noticed it as well.”

I ignored his statement, waiting to see if he would drop it or if he would continue to question me about my transgression. A few seconds passed before he continued.

“You’re aware of the rules so I’m assuming you had a very good reason for doing so. Am I right?” he asked, eyebrow raised and eyes on the damp road.

I sighed heavily and uncrossed my arms, laying them on the rests beside me in defeat.

“We took too much from her when we fed, Taehyung and I. I took too much. So I decided to heal her.” I replied, matter-of-factly.

“You’re not a fledgling anymore, Jungkook, you have control now. Why did you lose control with (Y/N)? Why is she different from all the others you’ve fed from for the last 100 years?”

“I-I don’t know!? She just- she’s different! She…” I trailed off.

Images of her and Yureum danced in my head, swirling in circles until I was dizzy and confused, their faces becoming one. She is so much like her. I sigh, my anger and annoyance at Namjoon deflating from my body as I slump in my seat.

“I’m sorry, It won’t happen again.” I finally finish.

“Good. Don’t let her around Seulgi until your blood fades from her system, or else she’ll have your head.”

“Hyung, there is something you should know about (Y/N).” I said, straightening in my seat.

“Mm? What should I know?”

His question hung in the air between us like a weight above my shoulders as I still debated with myself on whether I should tell him or not.

“(Y/N) is a witch.”

Silence.

“A what?” exclaimed Namjoon, his eyes darting back to the road that they had left momentarily, hands jerking the steering wheel back into place as the car swerved.

“She’s a witch. But I don’t think she realizes that or that her powers have manifested yet, for some reason. She has an almost identical witches mark as Yureum had and in the same exact spot too.”

“OOOH! Did I hear you just say (Y/N) is a witch?!” exclaimed Jimin from behind me, his hands now gripping my seat as he leaned forward to interject between us.

A devilish smile painted across his face in one brushstroke; he was enjoying this revelation way too much for my liking.

“Awah! No way! That’s so cool, I’ve never met a witch before.” added Hoseok from his place beside Jimin, a large grin on his face as his excitement radiated from him.

Yoongi was snoring lightly in the very back seat as usual and Jin has his headphones in and his phone close to his face, no doubt texting Jazmin, oblivious to the news.

“But haven’t you, you know, fed from her and other stuff? Would’nt you have tasted the magic in her bloodstream?” Hoseok asked, genuinely confused.

“Not if she hasn’t manifested yet…” provided Namjoon, the brains of the group.

“Her magic would still be dormant inside, therefore I wouldn’t taste it because it isn’t flowing through her.” I said calmly.

Both Jimin and Hoseok raised their eyebrows and made expression of ‘Oh, I see’, absorbing the information and letting it saturate their minds.

“How do you know all this about witches, Jungkookie?” asked Jimin, his face sidling up close to mine until I pushed him away with my elbow, his lips forming a pout.

Yureum, her laughing face as she showed me her powers for the first time, played across my eyes like a movie. The wilting white daisy floating weightlessly above the palm of her hand seconds before she trapped it with her other palm, connecting her two hands into a pod, hiding the flower. When she removed her hand from the top again, there sat the same daisy, bright and full of life, restored as if it were newly bloomed.

“Because I used to be in love with one.”


The next three days passed smoothly as I continued to live my life as if nothing was out of the normal. My dreams had returned to random pictures and scenarios of my own subconscious, only occasional blips of Jungkook’s memories meandering in for a second before they realized they did not belong and backed away with an unspoken ‘sorry’. I wondered if every face I passed could see right through me. Could they tell I was different or that I was currently involved with two Vampyres? I pondered if the girl two rows down from me in class knew of their existence, or if that ridiculously handsome man I passed on the street had just had a healthy lunch of A+. The way I saw the world was completely different; shadows weren’t just shadows anymore, they held the possibilities of other things existing in this world, like werewolves, witches, warlock, zombies. Who knows?!

“So, what else is there in this big world? If you guys exist, I’m sure there are plenty of other creatures that do as well. What about Zombies?” I asked Namjoon as it was his turn to follow me around and make sure that no one killed me today.

He looked slightly bored as we walked through the aisles of the grocery store with me, probably thinking about all the vampy things he could be doing right now besides guarding Taehyung and Jungkook’s dietary supplement/lover. Stale, 90’s pop hits reverberated against the shelves and walls as the fluorescent lights accentuated the sallow tones in the faces around us. Namjoon casually answered my questions as we paced leisurely, me checking off all the items that I needed from my mental list.

“If a Necromancer decides to awake some of the dead, then yes, but it isn’t like a virus that people can catch… at least not yet anyways.” He answered the last part a whisper from under his breath, as he absentmindedly read the bright box of cereal with cartoon characters dancing on the front.

“Oh my god, are you serious? If that ever happens just go ahead and kill me, ‘kay? A zombie apocalypse is one of my worst fears, I couldn’t handle it if that ever happened.”

My hands pushed the cold metal of the cart beneath my hands, as I tested out the freshness of various vegetables with my prodding fingertips, hair tickling my face as I looked down upon their bright flesh.

“What about you guys? What can you actually do, besides drink blood and compel people and be fast and strong?” I asked jokingly, my curiosity insatiable.

“It’s different for everybody actually.” He said, moving his cotton candy hair out of his eyes as he looked at me.
“For instance, I have a photographic memory, I’m very smart, even when I was a human. So that just translated when I turned. Sometimes my head actually hurts from all the useless information that gets stored in my head. A Vampyre’s ability usually reflects a certain aspect of their personality from when they were a human.”

Namjoon grabbed a roll of paper towels and tossed them in the cart, with an ‘I noticed you were out the other day’ as an explanation when I raised my eyebrows questioningly. Useless information indeed.

“What about Taehyung?” I asked, all my attention now focused on his mystical lesson.

“Tae has a very charismatic, charming personality and his compulsion abilities are ten times more powerful than most Vampyre’s. They last longer and they reach further distances. He basically has mind control.”

“Yes, I can see that.” I said, narrowing my eyes.

The memory of him easily convincing me to do the pile of dishes instead of him, and then me caving when he wanted to kiss at my neck and tease me through my shorts while I did so flashed through my mind. I made a mental note to punish him later on.

“He seems to make me do things without even trying sometimes, it’s like I can’t resist him.”

“Exactly. And Hoseok is an Empath. Have you noticed how he livens up a room instantly, how he can calm you down when you’re upset or make you happy for no reason?”

I thought back to the incident a few nights ago where I had woken up in a panic. The moment I had met Hoseok, I immediately relaxed into Jungkook and calmed down. I nodded my head and Namjoon continued.

“He can manipulate the emotions of others. Sometimes when he is feeling a particularly strong emotion himself, he will unknowingly project that onto the others around him, so he tries very hard to control himself.”

“It must be hard on him sometimes, always trying to keep himself happy for others around him, constantly keeping control over himself and his emotions…” I sympathized.

My opinion of the boy grew a little more with the knowledge of his struggle that he seemed to bear without complaint. I picked up a bag of rice and placed it in my cart, thinking of the next boy that I was curious about.

“And what does Yoongi do, besides grumble and laze around.”

My knowledge of the mint haired one was very limited, since we both seemed to share the same trait of avoiding strangers and keeping to ourselves. His attitude both intrigued and apprehended me, but I could sense that he had something powerful about him.

“Actually, we haven’t really figured out what he can do yet. He is very talented in many things but not in a supernatural way. He is a genius when it comes to music and composing and he plays the piano so well, it’s almost supernatural. He is really good at basketball and rapping too. But he hasn’t shown any signs of any extra powers beside the strength and speed that come with Vampyrism. He works really hard, harder than most of us. I think it’s because he is trying to push himself to prove that he is good, even without a power.”

“Is that why he is always grumpy?” I ask.

“No, I think that is just how he is sometimes.” Laughed Namjoon.

“And Jimin –“ he continued, “-Jimin is classifies as a Sexual Vampyre, so, not only does he feed on and gain energy through blood, he also benefits from sexual energy. He has the power of Attraction, which is similar to Tae’s Compulsion. Evidently, he was a real ladies man in his human days.” He finished with a smirk.

“I can actually see that, it makes total sense, even I was affected by his –“ I flung my arms out and waved them around my body, “- his aura. I didn’t know Vampyres could feed on other things besides blood though. Interesting…”

“Blood is the most typical energy source. Some can feed on sexual energies, some feed on emotional energies, and some can feed on actual life energies, like the soul, with just a touch. Those are the ones to be wary of.”

A chill ran up my spine at that thought. What would it feel like to have your soul drained from your body? For some reason it immediately reminded me of Dementor’s, those cloaked floaty beings from Harry Potter that sucked all the happiness out of you and left you a cold, empty shell. If I had to guess, I’d imagine it felt like that.

“That sounds… absolutely horrible…” I said, my face heavy with the thought.

“From what I’ve heard, it is.”

We walked in silence with our thoughts for a while as I decided what type of onion to buy; red, white, yellow? What was the difference?! With an annoyed grunt, I reached out and picked up one white globe, the crispy outer layer crumbling in my fingers and floating to the ground as I tossed it in a clear plastic produce bag.

“Wait, what about Jungkook? You never told me about him.” I turned on my heel and almost knocked into him, unaware of how close he had stepped to me while I was debating between onions.

“Oh, sorry..” I mumbled, backing away a little from his hovering form.

“Invisibility.” He answered bluntly, a stern look on his face, his eyes searching the crowd from over my head.

“Invisibility?”

“Yes.”

“Well, how does that wor-“ but he cut me off before I could finish, his hands on my hips, turning me so I would walk in front of him with his torso pressed against my back.

“We need to go, (Y/N).”

His tone held a hard finality and authority that I had not heard before, and I pushed the cart towards the checkout without hesitation as the beat of my heart began to rise from nervousness.

“Why? What’s happening? Namjoon?” my voice hitched as my throat began to close with panic.

The wheels of the shopping cart jiggled with the speed with which Namjoon was pushing me, and thankfully, there was an open checkout lane that we slid into. He whipped around me and had all of my items on the conveyer belt in seconds, explaining his sudden urgency under his breath.

“I’m certain were being followed. I need to get you home.”

“Oh. Okay.” Were the only words my brain could muster as shock sank in, frosting over my skin with cold sweat and filling me with paranoia.

Namjoon took the cart and pushed it up to the bagging rack, pulling me behind him as he swiped his own card and paid, compelling the cashier to bag faster with a deep, “bag faster, please” and a stare into her eyes which seemed to mesmerize her for a moment. As the command registered, her head whipped down and her hands were a blur as the loud beep of the scanner blared into my over-sensitive ears. I stood there, sweat forming on my brow and dampening my palms, helpless and confused on what I should do to help. Namjoon did everything, loading the cart, wheeling it to his car amongst the other shoppers who seemed to be moving at a slug’s pace, hindering our movement almost on purpose. He loaded the trunk in record time, abandoning the cart in the space next to his black Range Rover, then helped me into the passenger seat, shutting the door, and instantly climbing in from the other side in super speed mode. Sitting stiffly in the passenger seat, my thighs sticking to the leather, I timidly probed him on what he saw.

“Why do you think were being followed?” my voice quiet and calm, hiding my true emotions with a façade.

“Buckle up.”

He leaned over me and grabbed the metal and plastic, pulling it and clicking in into place before I could blush at his hands sliding over me, his heated face so close to mine. His dark eyes held flecks of golden brown and I could almost count the eyelashes that framed his intense irises.

“Because I saw the same two men the entire time we were in there.”

I absorbed that information, searching my memory to see if I could pick out any specific people, but I couldn’t. Couldn’t that have just been a simple coincidence?

“And I could smell them.”

“What does that even mean?” I asked as we whizzed down the street, barely making a yellow light before it switched to red, just as we passed under it.

“They smelled like anger and bad intention. And Vampyre’s. If these people are connected to your kidnapping, then whoever took you when you were a child was a Vampyre, which really makes me wonder how you are still alive right now.”

The car rocked over speed bumps and uneven ground at his speedometer reached 80 mph down a hill, almost hitting a car that had the right of way at an intersection.

“Namjoon, slow down!” I shouted, holding onto the dash and arm rest to try and brace myself, my right foot slamming down on the imaginary break below me.

“I can’t, they’re right behind us. Just hold on.” He growled, voice no longer as calm and level as before.

My eyes snapped up to the rear view mirror to discover that it was completely filled by the shiny black car with tinted windows that was currently riding up on our bumper. My hair flared around my face as I turned to look out the back window and confirm what I saw in the silver reflective glass above me.

“What the fucking fuck?! Why is this happening?! I’m just a girl!”

“(Y/N), turn around and face forward so your neck doesn’t snap if we crash!” Yelled Namjoon, one hand shoving me against my seat.

“I don’t understand why he is chasing me like this! This goes beyond normal kidnapper/serial killer behavior!”

“If you survive, I promise you’ll know everything soon.”

All I heard was if. If I survived which meant he thought there was a possibility that I would die in this chase. That realization certainly didn’t help the panic that began to leak from my darting eyes and inflate my lungs as I hyper-ventilated, whimpering out quiet oh no’s and shit’s as we tore around turns, tipping precariously to the side. We lurched forward as a metallic crunch sound surrounded us, and I was thankful for the seat belt now cutting into the flesh on my upper chest and neck. They had actually rear-ended us. None of this made sense to me and my head was beginning to buzz my vision danced in circles in front of me as if I would faint from the fear. Another hit, harder this time, had us spin out slightly until Namjoon gained control of the car and sped up to 100 mph, weaving around cars and ignoring red lights, driving on the sidewalk or the grass when necessary.

“FUCK!” Namjoon cursed as we came to a 90° turn on the back road and railroad tracks that were close to my apartment.

His arm flew out across my chest as he slammed on the breaks and tried to take the turn, even though we both knew it wouldn’t work. Their car wrecked into us, becoming the catalyst that propelled us forward and had us flipping over and over, hitting the pavement hard as glass, metal, and plastic flew and floated all around me. Everything went quiet except for my breathing and a high pitched noise that rang in my ears as my body alternated between hovering above my seat and slamming against it as we soared and crashed. At some point I felt my head ricochet against the dashboard and my finger snap in the wrong direction as I tried to find purchase in something. My swirling vision faded into a white blur and the last thing I saw was the oncoming train heading straight for the black car now laid across the railroad tracks behind us.


Please like and reblog if you enjoyed Chapter 7 :) it helps alot

First Love- Brett Talbot Imagine

-hi! i was wondering if you could write a one shot for me pls? where y/n is really quiet and bashful and doesn’t talk to very many people and brett has a crush on her or something? idk im bad at explaining sorry 😣 - anon

A/N: Written in the third person. Including my favorite book (First Love by James Patterson) and quote from it in this one, because I’m still reeling over how wonderful it is. I highly recommended it! Also, tell me if you think I should make a part two! 

WARNINGS: Crying, Panic Attack, Mentions of body issues

She sat at the lunch table, reading a new book like she did every day. She had an intent look on her face, letting out a small chuckle every so often. Brett watched just as intently. He was eating lunch with his friends, talking about the upcoming game against Beacon Hills. 

Typically, Brett would be all for talking about lacrosse, since it was a huge part of his life, but he couldn’t seem to focus. He was too focused on the way Y/N’s eyes twinkled and danced as she read each word. Her heartbeat was steady and lulled Brett. She had one strand of hair that fell just to the side of her brows. He wanted so badly to go over and push it behind her ear. 

The bell rang and lunch was over. It wasn’t all bad, though. Brett had the chance to see Y/N next period in English. He sat at the table next to hers. That was the closest they have ever been, and the ways things were going for Brett, they will ever be. 

Twenty minutes into English, the teacher announced that for the next section, the students would be presenting a mini lesson to the class in pairs. Y/N’s heart began beating out of her chest. She didn’t want to present in front of the class. What if she said something wrong or stuttered and the class laughed at her? What if they laughed at the little acne scar she had on her cheek, right next to her nose? What if they laughed about the way she could never quite figure out what to do with the strand of hair that always fell next to her eyebrow? A million possibilities of failure raced through her mind.

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