at the observatory

about 7 years ago in my hometown there was a massive snowstorm and the plows all plowed the snow from a shopping mall into a single giant mountain

it was named Mount Chipotle for obvious reasons 

it was so beloved that a bunch of local college students created the Mount Chipotle National Research Observatory and studied it for their environmental science class. 

It finally melted in May and was properly eulogized in the local paper

fucking amazing

Overwhelming III

Author’s Note: @multipotens this one’s for you! I’ve had a few people asking me about another part to Overwhelming, and finally found some inspiration for it. So here you are, my dears! I hope you like it!

(Part I || Part II)


April 4th has been marked on his calendar for a long time. It’s a special day. The fourth day of the fourth month. Four four. A good sign. An omen. O-M-E-N. Four again. It’s April 4th, and he’s taking her to the observatory. Once upon a time she mentioned it, when they were talking about how astronauts have to be careful if they cry in space, and he’s finally going to take her there.

Y/N doesn’t understand space the way he does, but she has an adoration for the stars. When she listens to him explain the night sky, her eyes light up in a way that puts the Milky Way to shame. He always thought that such expressions were so unnecessary. Metaphors never made much sense before her. Now, nothing seems a good enough comparison. She is every bright spot in his sky, the faithful rhythm of a heartbeat, the one and only person who makes him feel like he’s normal. When he’s with her, he’s not drowning. She keeps him anchored and grounded, her love a life raft to keep his head above water.

How he loves her.

For two and a half years, she has been the best thing in his life. Her hand on his cheek as she talks him through a panic attack. The way she scouts out potential date locations to make sure the stimuli won’t be too overwhelming for him. The soft whisper of her voice as she says, good night, Doctor, in the hallway of her apartment building before kissing him.

So many four letter words now hold a much greater significance for him. Kiss and love and lips and dear and want and need and hold. He’s not religious, but when she kisses him that way, he thinks maybe there is a higher power, if by some miracle and against all odds, he is here with the lips of the most beautiful girl in the world on his.

It took several failed attempts at intimacy before he finally managed to feel comfortable enough – long hours in dim rooms, tangled up in sheets and sweat, inevitably concluded with him curled up on the edge of the bed, hands over his ears, eyes shut tight as he tried to breathe in and out. She was patient with him, gently setting a blanket around his shoulders so he wouldn’t feel so exposed and vulnerable, waiting until he could get his lungs to work again. But when it finally happened, her skin beneath his, the way she looked at him as the lines blurred and it became hard to tell where he ended and where she began – if that wasn’t divine, he wasn’t sure what qualified as such.

“Hi you,” she says, when he comes to pick her up. With eyes like stars and a lavender dress, she manages to take his breath away. His heart beats faster, and he becomes keenly aware of the sensation of the leather steering wheel sticking to his skin.

She climbs into the car.

Onetwo threefour onetwo threefour.

Looks at him with a smile she has never directed towards anyone else. Onetwothreefour.

Breathe. Breathe.

In and out and in and out.

“Hey,” he manages, stretching over to kiss her briefly. “You look beautiful. So beautiful.”

“As do you.” He’s dressed up more than usual, in a nice suit and vest, complete with a purple tie littered with tiny stars. “Any particular reason?”

Reid swallows hard and struggles to turn the key in the ignition, his left hand squeezing the steering wheel a little bit tighter. “N-no. I just thought it might be fun, you know?” To his relief, she just nods and doesn’t press the issue further.

At the observatory, they wander through exhibits hand in hand, and he feels a sense of pride as her eyes grow wide at the sight of it all. She asks him question after question, desperate to know more, and he replies with answer after answer.

“Which constellation is your favorite?” she inquires.

What first came to mind was the light in her eyes, and the trail of freckles on her shoulders, and the patterns she traces on his skin when they’re lying together in bed. But he says, “The Pleiades. There are so many stories from so many different cultures about how they came to be, and yet they all sound so similar. I’ve always wondered how something like that could be possible. Which one do you like best?”

“Ursa Major,” she answers. “It’s like an old friend, guiding the way. Now that I think about it, it’s kind of like you. So tall, and always knowing just where to go.” She’s comparing him to stars, and he doesn’t know what he’s done to deserve someone like her, but he’s grateful that out of all the universe, she chose him.

It is a mantra he repeats to himself over and over. She chose you. She chose you. She chose you. There is a reason she chose you. No matter what his brain tries to tell him, no matter what doubts arise, she didn’t have to pick him. But she did. And she has. And he hopes that she always will.

At the thought of that, he inhales sharply, crossing his arms and rocking back and forth on the balls of his feet. Subtly trying to stim without her noticing. Of course she does.

“Is everything okay, dear?” Y/N glances around the observatory, people and families strolling through. “Is it too loud? Is it too bright? We can leave if it’s too much.”

“No! No, I’m okay! We should stay. I want to stay.” The words come out in a rush and she tilts her head to the side, confused. Reid brushes it off and checks his watch, fastened over his blazer as usual. They have enough time. All is well. He leads her to a door where the planetarium dome is housed.

“Spencer, the sign says that the show doesn’t start for another hour,” she says.

“It’s alright, I,uh, called in a favor from a friend.” The employee standing outside the door recognizes him, nods, and lets them in. It’s dark and quiet inside, and it takes a few moments for his eyes to adjust to the void of black. No sooner have they done so does the planetarium screen burst to life, pinpricks of light glowing on the screen. The universe is before them. Endless. Infinite. Perpetual. P-E-R-P-E-T-U-A-L. Pur-peh-chu-all.

“Wow,” she breathes, staring up at the simulated night sky. “This is incredible.” Galaxies, nebula, and constellations spin and float above them. It’s dizzying. Or at least he thinks it is. He can’t tell if it’s the screen or his own emotions that has him feeling lightheaded suddenly.

In and out and in and out. Breathe breathe. He wrings his hands one two three four times in a row. He recites names of stars in his head. He counts backwards from one hundred by prime numbers. He can do this. He can do this.

Reid realizes she’s staring at him, calling his name, and he snaps out of his trance. He can do this. He has to do this. Hand in his suit pocket, he taps his fingers in a slow pattern. “When I was little, I wanted to go up into space so bad. I wanted to see the stars up close and in person. They were so beautiful, I just wanted to be close to them.”

“They’re the most beautiful thing,” she murmurs. In the dim light of the planetarium, her face is half lit up, but it’s enough to see she’s stunned by it all. Overwhelmed.

“No,” he cuts in, “no they’re not.” It comes out harsher than he anticipated and she frowns at him and god he’s never been so nervous in his life. It’s just her. It’s just Y/N, the same Y/N who didn’t run away when he had a panic attack on their first date and who didn’t flinch away from his diagnosis. In all their time together she has never made him feel inferior or ashamed. In fact, she does just the opposite, lifting him up and helping him to find the courage he never dreamed he could possess.

And while she is so good with people, while she could make friends with anyone in a heartbeat, and while he’s convinced that she could manage to make anyone fall in love with her with just that smile of hers and the kindness of her heart, she chooses to love him. The fact that he has Asperger’s doesn’t bother her. Neither does the fact that he’s a recovered addict or the son of a paranoid schizophrenic. She accepts him. She loves him. L-O-V-E. Loves him.

“She loves me,” he whispers under his breath.

“What?” she asks. By now she’s looking rather confused. Reid glances back up at the stars above them, and tries to draw inspiration from them. The Pleiades shine down on him. How strange that their story remains the same across cultures, some magical form of collective effervescence that has crossed oceans.

“They’re not the most beautiful thing. You are.”

This is his story. This is their story. Nothing in the history of the universe has ever been so important to him.

“I have wanted many things in this life,” he tells her, meeting her eyes once more.”I wanted to help my mom and I wanted to get into CalTech and I wanted to join the FBI, and I have wanted a million things along the way, but I have never wanted anything the way I want you. I’ve never needed anything so much.” He takes her hand, and sensing his anxiety, she rubs four steady circles on his skin with her thumb. “I need you in my life. I’m always going to need you, and for the rest of my days, I want to be by your side. You make me a better person, and you’ve proved to me that I’m worthy of love, when I thought nobody would ever want to love me. I want to love you for all of my days and beyond. So, Y/F/N Y/L/N…. Marry me, please?” Maar-ee me please.

Please please please.

Please.

There is nothing but the thundering sound of his own heartbeat in his ears as he drops down to one knee and reveals to her the box he’s been keeping his pocket all day. The weight of it has felt like an anvil, a burden he cannot ignore.

She stares at him unblinking and he counts one two th-

“Yes,” she whispers. “Yes. Yes! Of course I will!” It’s not until that moment he realizes she’s begun to cry, and once he does his own vision starts to blur behind tears. His mind is still processing the words that have come from her lips when she bends down to throw her arms around him and kiss him softly, deeply.

Everything else in the world fades away, and his mind is quiet for just a minute. In this perfect, flawless, minute. Because she said yes.

“Yes?” he clarifies, still shell-shocked.

“Yes,” she assures him. He grins, placing his lips on her forehead, her nose, her cheek, and her lips once more.

It’s intoxicating and blissful and overwhelming o-ver-whel-ming.

This is the good kind of overwhelming, not the sort that makes it impossible to breathe or forces him to close his eyes. So much emotion of any sort is enough to make a mess of him, and while it’s true he’s crying and he can’t find the words to describe this sensation, he doesn’t mind at all. This is the best kind of overwhelming, the joy practically overflowing. She’s laughing and they’re both in tears and her arms are tight around him but the pressure feels nice.

Beneath projected planets and simulated stars, he buries his face in her shoulder. “I love you so,” he says.

One two three four.

anonymous asked:

If the Space Core randomly fell out of orbit and into your front yard, what would you do?

Take him inside and give him a loving home where we would go to the observatory at my school every night so he can look at the stars and planets to his little figurative heart’s content

Ask me weird stuff!

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Airglow waves. Do you you think our night sky is pitch black ? Have a look at this timelapse video. I captured it at Carnegie Las Campamas observatory. Those red waves are not clouds (!) - this is pretty intense airglow, which takes place in upper atmosphere. It’s very interesting to see how the waves move. While camera pans you will notice on the foreground both 6.5-m Magellan telescopes, as well as nicely setting Milky Way. I hope you’ll enjoy the view ! :) Music: “Airglow” by © Club 220

Cascading loops on the surface of the sun highlight an active region that had just rotated into view of our solar-observing spacecraft. We have observed this phenomenon numerous times, but this one was one of the longest and clearest sequences we have seen in years. 

The bright loops are actually charged particles spinning along the magnetic field lines! The action was captured in a combination of two wavelengths of extreme ultraviolet light over a period of about 20 hours. 

Take a closer look: https://sdo.gsfc.nasa.gov/gallery/potw/item/798

Make sure to follow us on Tumblr for your regular dose of space: http://nasa.tumblr.com

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Sunrise over the Mojave Desert and some amazing waving clouds in timelapse view, seen from Mt. Wilson, in the San Gabriel Mountains, California

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Images of the cosmos from the late 1950s and early 60s. Most are from the Mount Wilson and Palomar Observatories. Don’t get me wrong, I love all the high definition and detailed images coming out of Hubble and similar telescopes today, but there is something about these old photos. What they lacked in detail and resolution they made up for with wonder and mystery. Can you imagination how mind blowing these pictures would have been when they first came out of the developing tank in the 50′s?

Check out my scifi music Spotify playlist

This composite image shows a coronal mass ejection, a type of space weather linked to solar energetic particles, as seen from two space-based solar observatories and one ground-based instrument. The image in gold is from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, the image in blue is from the Manua Loa Solar Observatory’s K-Cor coronagraph, and the image in red is from ESA and NASA’s Solar and Heliospheric Observatory.

Our constantly-changing sun sometimes erupts with bursts of light, solar material, or ultra-fast energized particles — collectively, these events contribute to space weather. A new study shows that the warning signs of one type of space weather event can be detected tens of minutes earlier than with current forecasting techniques – critical extra time that could help protect astronauts in space. 

Credits: NASA/ESA/SOHO/SDO/Joy Ng and MLSO/K-Cor

Aurora, Luna and comet.

Shortly after sunset, whose glow is still visible in the background, Ingólfur Bjargmundsson snapped this image of the Aurora Borealis and comet Panstarrs. The comet is visible as a smudge above the sunset and below the right hand streamer of glowing charged particles that channel the energy of the solar wind down towards the surface. Barring the stars all the light in this image derives from Sol.

This image is part of the Astronomy Photographer of the Year exhibition at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, London.

Loz

Image credit: Ingólfur Bjargmundsson

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Lunar halo above La Silla observatory in Atacama, Chile :) During one of the nights we were lucky to see such an interesting phenomenon as 22° Halo around the moon. The clouds were flying all over the sky and the Moon was quite spectacular indeed ! You can also see setting Orion constellation, as well as Sirius - the brightest star on the sky (in the upper left). I hope you’ll enjoy the view :)

Infrared Portrait of the Large Magellanic Cloud : Cosmic dust clouds ripple across this infrared portrait of our Milky Ways satellite galaxy, the Large Magellanic Cloud. In fact, the remarkable composite image from the Herschel Space Observatory and the Spitzer Space Telescope show that dust clouds fill this neighboring dwarf galaxy, much like dust along the plane of the Milky Way itself. The dust temperatures tend to trace star forming activity. Spitzer data in blue hues indicate warm dust heated by young stars. Herschels instruments contributed the image data shown in red and green, revealing dust emission from cooler and intermediate regions where star formation is just beginning or has stopped. Dominated by dust emission, the Large Magellanic Clouds infrared appearance is different from views in optical images. But this galaxys well-known Tarantula Nebula still stands out, easily seen here as the brightest region to the left of center. A mere 160,000 light-years distant, the Large Cloud of Magellan is about 30,000 light-years across. via NASA

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