but you do have to at least have read the first one to understand some of them

Flicker Out

Hello, I like writing. This is my first fic posted, so please give me feedback! If you like my writing, I also do Spiderman: Homecoming (sickfics), Harry Potter (mostly drarry), and other fandoms I find myself interested in. Thanks for reading!


Some say that certain people flicker out if they’re not important enough. This has all around been believed to be false, no one had Flickered Out for many years - centuries. At least, no one that anyone has noticed. There may be hundreds - thousands - of people who Flicker Out and they’re not important enough to be remembered.

Lance had always been important in his family - taking care of his siblings when his mother was sick or at work or was just too tired to do it. Lance loved his family, and his family loved Lance.

When Lance and the others got shot into space, Lance was devastated. He hoped his family would remember him - wouldn’t let him Flicker. He was probably one of the few who believed that people Flickered Out.

Lance had every right to believe. His best friend Flickered Outright in front of him. It was agony watching someone he cared for - someone important to him Flicker. It started out small, sometimes he seemed to be a bit transparent, zoned out. He talked about hearing someone - something - call for him. Like he was being lured somewhere, but he couldn’t find where. 

Lance was terrified of losing his best friend and tried his hardest to make sure he was in his thoughts more than he wasn’t. Tried getting other people to notice, but they laughed at him. No one has Flickered Out for centuries, Lance. That’s enough joking around. And so Lance did what he could, told James how much he meant to Lance. How important he was to Lance.

Then James started disappearing for hours, no matter how loud Lance was when he yelled for him, how much he searched for him, he wouldn’t appear.

Then one day, while they were hanging out James started flickering. Lance stared in horror as his best friend began to disappear and reappear sporadically. James had been important to Lance why was he disappearing? Was he not important enough? Then, James was gone. The only thing that hinted at his existence was a half-empty pop can next to where he was sitting. The only thing left of him was memories - to be forgotten and fade away with time.

After that, Lance believed wholeheartedly in those who Flickered Out. How could he not? Lance stopped believing that they Flickered Out because of how not important they were, though. He didn’t know why they flickered, but it couldn’t be about how more and less important someone was.

That’s what he believed, until space, that is.

At first, Lance almost didn’t notice it. A whisper he heard sometimes when there was no one else around. He brushed it off as hearing things or even Blue talking to him. Of course, he should have realized that wasn’t the case.

When the team started showing signs of annoyance, of course, it hurt Lance, he didn’t think the effects would be so drastic. Follow me. He slowly began to think about how important his role was on the team. Allura had Blue now, that means he could easily be replaced again if he just left. He went to Keith when the thoughts began to get too much. He helped, a bit. Helped him realize how selfish he was being for thinking that way. Of course he was important. Wasn’t he?

Then Keith left, leaving Lance heartbroken. Hadn’t he just said that he was important? Follow me. If he was so important, why did Keith leave?

Lance could feel himself slipping away. Hours would go by and no one would come looking for him. He blacked out more and more often. He realized he was Flickering when he heard Hunk looking for him, but even when he was standing right in front of him, Hunk couldn’t see him. Follow me. Lance knew Keith could come back and take his spot, and that made him feel better. If he did Flicker Out, then at least there was someone there to take his spot.

It happened during a mission. Of course it would, when else would it have happened? When he was alone, and no one would notice? Follow me. He only realized he was Flickering because Hunk did. He asked Lance how he was flickering. And then realization dawned on Lance. Follow me. This was it. He teared up, realizing that people didn’t Flicker Out because they weren’t important, they Flickered Out because they didn’t feel important. He heard the voices more clearly now, beckoning him to them. Follow me.

“I’m sorry,” Lance said in between flickers, “I love you, Hunk. Tell Keith I’m sorry. Tell them all I’m sorry.” Follow me. “Tell my mom I love her. Tell my sisters and brothers I love them. Especially tell Blue.” Follow me. “I love her most, and I forgive her for choosing Allura. I wasn’t as important, I understand now.” Follow me.

“Lance? Lance!” Follow me.

Lance allowed himself to follow the voice that had been nagging him the entire time to follow it. Follow it where, Lance had wondered. He understood now. Follow it away. 

motivational classics quotes

Hi guys! Here’s a masterpost of some inspirational quotes taken from classical literature that you can use in your bullet journal, planner, or whenever you need some extra motivation! Italicized are some of my favorites that really help me stop procrastinating and get through the day :) 

romans:

seneca:

  • “i will storm the gods, and shake the universe.”
  • “luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”
  • “if one does not know to which port one is sailing, no wind is favorable.”
  • “it is not because things are difficult that we do not dare, but because we do not dare, things are difficult.”
  • “sometimes it is an act of bravery even to live.”

ovid:

  • “nothing is stronger than habit.”
  • “let your hook be always cast. in the pool where you least expect it, will be fish.”
  • “endure and persist; this pain will turn into good by and by.”
  • “what is without periods of rest will not endure.”

virgil:

  • “they can because they think they can.”
  • “let us go singing as far as we go: the road will be less tedious.”
  • “work conquers all.”
  • “practice and thought may forge many an art.”
  • “we cannot all do everything.”

horace:

  • “adversity has the effect of eliciting talents, which in prosperous circumstances would have lain dormant.”
  • “he who has begun has half done. dare to be wise; begin!”
  • “remember when life’s path is steep to keep your mind even.”
  • “mix a little foolishness with your serious plans. it is lovely to be silly at the right moment.”
  • “he who feared that he would not succeed sat still.”

catullus:

  • “often has leisure ruined great kings and fine cities.”
  • “if anything has happened to one who ever yearned and wished but never hoped, that is a rare pleasure of the soul.”
  • “i hate and i love. perhaps you ask why i do this? i do not know, but i feel it happening and i am tortured.”

greeks:

homer:

  • “the fates have given mortals hearts that can endure.”
  • “some of the words you’ll find within yourself, the rest some power will inspire you to say.”
  • “for a friend with an understanding heart is worth no less than a brother.”
  • “there is a time for many words and there is a time also for sleep.”

sappho:

  • “may I write words more naked than flesh, stronger than bone, more resilient than sinew, sensitive than nerve.”
  • “beauty endures only for as long as it can be seen; goodness, beautiful today, will remain so tomorrow.”
  • “you who judge me, for me you are nothing.”

plato:

  • “be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.”
  • “no one should be discouraged who can make constant progress, even though it be slow.”
  • “music is a moral law. it gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything.”
  • “the first and best victory is to conquer self.”
  • “the beginning is the most important part of the work.”

aristotle:

  • “the roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet.”
  • “pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work.”
  • “poetry demands a man with a special gift for it, or else one with a touch of madness in him.”
  • “we are what we repeatedly do. excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” (misattributed, but too good to pass up :) )

plutarch:

  • “the mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled.”
  • “what we achieve inwardly will change outer reality.”
  • “to make no mistakes is not in the power of man; but from their errors and mistakes the wise and good learn wisdom for the future.”
  • “painting is silent poetry, and poetry is painting that speaks.”
  • “to find fault is easy; to do better may be difficult.”

I hope you find these useful, or at least enjoyed reading through them! Let me know which are your favorites! 

xx, penelope

I can see people’s auras… and it’s a curse.

by A10A10A10

Yes, I can see people’s auras.

And I hate saying it so bluntly. It makes me sound like some hack psychic who fakes the ability as a means of exploitation and a paycheck. I’ve never made money from my ability. I’ve never taken advantage of it. And, until now, I’ve never spoken of it to anybody.

But I really do see them, and I’m starting to view it as more of a curse. I have a reason for typing this out and I assure you, there isn’t a happy ending.

Keep reading

Study tips! - 2017

Hi guys! These are the tips that I have for now, the truth is that they work quite a bit at the time of studying and I hope they do the same for you.

1.      Make summaries and/or schemas:

I’m a girl more of summaries than schemes (concept maps, or mind maps), but any of these are good to analyze, understand and remember better what one is studying at the time. I know that many people, like me, have the problem to put what they were studied in either of these two methods, for example, I’m not very good with the schemes, therefore I support more on summaries and to make them as small as possible, carefully not to forget anything about what I am summarizing; This is why I want to advise you that no matter how difficult and complicated it seem any of these methods, try it. Eventually, you will handled the way to do it and you’ll not realize when you will be all experts.

2.      Uses colors:

Yes, I won’t deny it, I’m 100% a girl of colors. I feel incomplete, weird, as if something will miss me when my notes do not have color, at least highlight my titles, I need it, it’s something that is a part of me.

Careful! Use colors doesn’t mean that our notes are freshly come out from a fairy oven and it looks like a rainbow, no. Use them, but sparingly, as fair and necessary to put your notes look cute and you can difference the titles of the rest, or the term of its meaning… and of course the most important thing, that are organized and clean so that when it comes the time for studying, you can understand everything.

More than for aesthetics, I occupy the colors in order to have a more dynamic vision in my notebook, allowing me to better understand, memorize better and above all to find what I want more easily. However, I won’t deny that I also like to have my notes beautiful and colorful, I say, who don’t like to have their notes organized and beautiful? To nobody.

3.      Organize your time:

Sometimes when we sit at our study site we spend hours on the same subject, without advancing in others that also we have to study, so to avoid these types of mishaps that make our work to study more heavy, because it leaves all for after, we must organize our time of study. Some occupy the “bullet journal" method for studies, others, the timer. I used the timer until I met a wonderful applications that help you concentrate and at the same time, takes your time. For example, we have a well known application called “Forest” which is available for both IOS and Android, with the difference that in Android you can download the free version, which in IOS is not yet available, but there are other applications that are similar to “Forest” that are free, such as “Be Focused”, an application that also helps you manage your time , where you can save time and designate them for return to them whenever you want, you also have the option to have breaks. The only difference between “Forest” and “Be Focused” is that the first you have the option of listening to sound of fund for greater concentration, while the second handles you only the time, without the option of background music. These two earlier applications are part of many more that you can find both Android and IOS (if you want, later I will let a post with a list of applications to study that I personally find the best of them).

To organize your time, you must rely on what you are studying, because it all depends on the amount of content. For example, in biology is usually much content, concepts or terms to memorize and understand, so I left a full hour to study everything and make sure that I understood. If the content is very complicated, I can add a couple of more minutes, but without passing me in the hour and a half, because you have to keep in mind that there are more to study.

4.       Explains what you studied:

That’s right, explain in your own words what you studied. This may be by voice or video recorder, the idea is that once you’ve explained everything in your own words you can hear the audio, and ensure that you’ve understood all or at least the vast majority. So you will see your failings and strengthen your weaknesses., correct your mistakes and learn from them. Personally, I recorded my voice explaining the best that I can what I’ve understood, and if I’ve doubts about having it explained well or have covered all, I send the audio to my friends or classmates, that way I can have a second opinion and make sure I have done well.

5.       Record your classes if possible:

If you need to take notes in a class, but for various reasons, are a - b or c, you can’t be able to complete them, I recommend that you carefully get your cellphone and begin to record the class quietly, and when you will be already at home can play the audio and complete your notes without missing anything.

Although, to tell the truth, I recommend over talking to your classmates and ask for

permission from the Professor, and then record the class, both in audio as an image. If the teacher still not authorized it (because it’s supposed to record the classes within an establishment is not allowed), can get a little rebellious and record, put your cellphone somewhere in the room where it isn’t seen. Sometimes be a little rebellious is not bad, it all depends on the reason why you are, right?

Carefull! This doesn’t mean that you don’t take notes in class or not pay attention because you are recording, if you don’t understand the class less you will do it through an audio or video, where you don’t have the support of your present teacher.

6.      Creates memory cards (flashcards):

Although it seems typical, they are quite effective. There is the option of to make them yourself or you can download any application that can make them, as for example Quizlet, an application that is available both IOS and Android. This will help to quickly memorize definitions of concepts, or important dates, people and their works, etc.

7.      Transfer your notes in order, rewrite:

If you are one of the people who, like me, prefer to make a draft of his notes, and then pass them in clean (rewrite them), you’ll know that this tip really works. I won’t deny that it is more work, but everything has its reward, isn’t it?

Personally I’m of people who have better visual memory, which read and write helps me to memorize better. Thus I memorize and order my notes, both at the same time. In addition, it said that rewrite is equivalent to five readings, I don’t know if that is true, but I at least feel that I memorize best rewritting, well in my time to study I remember things I’ve written and I can understand them better.

8.       Listen to music to concentrate:

The truth is that this tip is pretty ambiguous and personal, because it depends on each person. Many people can’t concentrate with noise, so they only can study in complete silence, and others simply cannot withstand be studying with so much silence. I’m of people who are in the middle.

For me is inevitable listen classical, instrumental music, rain, nature or just a relaxing study melody sounds. It helps me enough to concentrate and accompany me at the time of study. There are a variety of videos on YouTube with relaxing music, classical or instrumental music, or sounds of nature to study, as well as on Spotify playlists that are pretty good.

Personally, I listen to music when I do exercises such as mathematics or physics, and as for readings or review, normally I do without music or with one that does not have too much rhythm, as sounds of rain, wind, etc., to be able to concentrate.

9.      Search material of support:

If you feel that you still don’t understand the subject, either because it is very difficult or because you don’t understand your teacher, you can’t stay still and do nothing. You have to auto-teach you, learn and learn any other way what you are passing in classes.

For example, looking for videos that teach you what you are going through, search exercises online, Power Point presentations, PDF documents to help you supplement your notes or your knowledge. There are many channels on YouTube that can help you to study, as also pages with books, exercises, and documents about what you’re going. The idea is to find supporting material that will help you to understand what you’re learning in class, so to be able to reinforce.

10.   Stay away from your social networks:

I know that many of us it has happened that from being studying we went from one second to another to be checking our Instagram account. Best for these cases is to put the cell phone as far as possible, if needed elsewhere in your home (obviously, if you’re studying at home), and in airplane mode so that nothing interrupts your time of study. Now, to avoid entering your networks through the computer or laptop that you are using at the time of study, you can download applications that will block certain pages by a certain time, and once activated cannot be it reversed, yes or Yes you should spend that time so that the pages are unlocked. These applications exist for both Windows and Mac.

11.  Uses Post-it (sticky notes):

These help me to write down something that perhaps the teacher said in class and would not have seeing completely with the theme that we’re passing, or be any possible question test, any dimension, a concept that I don’t know.

12.  If you have any doubts, questions, ask:

As they say the teachers, or at least of my school, “There no are silly questions, only fools who don’t ask”. So, if you have doubts, ask. No matter if you make a mistake, you must solve all your doubts because that will help you better understand what you are seeing. If you are in classes and you don’t understand, ask, solve all your doubts with the professor, because once you get home to study you won’t understand almost nothing, if it is that it is absolutely nothing, by not having asked.

If you’re at home or out of classes, studying, grab your cell and ask your classmates. The idea is to clear your concern in one way or another.

Personally, I really like to be able to solve my doubts with my classmates, because in addition to answer all my questions, we can exchange notes, complementing our notes, we can learn new techniques to solve exercises, etc.

13.   Review constantly:

I know that the work of reviewing every day is quite heavy, but it works. It’s truth. At least in my experience constantly review has helped me be able to memorize better what are passing to me in classes, since the constant review helps to retain longer the lessons learned, and a day before the test it doesn’t need to study too hard, ‘cause everything I learned it was be engraved on the head, and just only a small study session will need. Therefore I recommend that when you get arrive home after school review your notes at least 15 minutes that day, and everyday, in that way you will retain in your head more time what they are seeing.

14.   Gets emails from your professors/teachers:

In my case, some of my teachers send us documents PDF or PPTs we use during their classes, to study and reinforce what we saw, as well as complement our notes. Course, I recommend that if you are still in school, you can put on agree with your classmates and create an email as a group so that way you will not have problem in contacting your teacher. This is ‘cause in some schools have problems for contact their professors outside the establishment, and there are some schools that are quite strict in that area. If you’re in university, I don’t think that will be a problem to contact you through your personal email.

Carefull! Teachers are not always so cool, or so nice, to give you their mail, some of they put many excuses since in some schools the teacher-student ethics is fairly strict with contact outside the establishment, so they are usually quite reluctant to give them, especially if the teacher is handsome, so you have to prove that you are really interested in the material support and not in him, or in harass him (even while actually are haha, the key is prove otherwise 😉).

15.  Lean on your textbooks:

Many times in our schools deliver us books of the subjects that we will see that year (either whether we should buy them or they are delivered by the same school), and either that the professor uses them little or nothing within classes, we must have in mind that the book yes serves us and helps, or at least the vast majority of them because it is a support material that contains descriptions, images and vocabulary, and to answer key in some, that helps us to know in what we were wrong (for example, the books of mathematics, following exercise can confirm your answer with the solution key), this can serve when you are studying for a test, and also the test obviously. So it is best to always bear in mind that texts that give schools if you serve, independent of whether the teachers based their class in them or not, there will always be material that will help you to complement what you taught the teacher in class.

16.  Have a fixed study site:

To study well and be able to focus without any impediment, we need a fixed and comfortable place. This place has to be clean, orderly, and as much as possible wide (extended desktop), so we can have all our scope and not deconcentrate us to go for something that you need or miss. The best thing is study in a desk in your room, or in the table of dining room of your house, but is completely forbidden study in bed, as to be overly comfortable us enters laziness and sleep, interrupting our study session, and practically ensuring a long nap.


17.  Keep a schedule of fixed study:

Personally, I’m kind of people who aren’t very organized when it comes to schedules or events. Simply plans and me not get along very well, but I don’t deny that for a time I tried it, being constant in my moment of planning what to do later (in my bullet journal) and I found it quite beneficial. Apart from planning everything and organize my time, and comply with what I should do of course, I could see the progress of my studies, but as I said the plans and I don’t we get along very well. But that doesn’t prevent that recommend you organize your time, plan what to do, and between that define a time of day that is dedicated only to study. It can be in the afternoon after school, can be in the morning before going to school, or can be at night before going to bed, no matter the time, what matters is that you should defined a time to study and you can’t move that time, this will help to discipline your brain and accustom him that in this period of the day must be aware, attentive and concentrated to absorb everything, of course without forgetting small breaks in the study session. Over time you’ll see the results, giving you features that you do better absorb the information, that in that period of time your brain will be more attentive to what he reads or exercises, so you can understand much better than before.

+ Bonus: Organize your times.
For this, the best is do the technique of bullet journal, you can also go to the planner, but personally I like the BJ more, although like I said, I didn’t last long because a I’m really bad in planning constantly, but during the time I did it worked perfect, so I recommend that even if you are just as bad planning constantly, like me, try it. Who knows? Perhaps you become experts in the bullet journal.

Regards! 😄✌💕

{Photos: Pinterest and Google]

10

Here’s the Soulmate!AU collab @rickandmortygetschwifty and I did together! :) It was so awesome to work on this with you; you’re so amazing <3

Please, read @rickandmortygetschwifty ‘s part of the collab right here, under the cut!! (The comic will make more sense, after you’ve read it) Prepare to weep! The fic is long and heart-wrenchingly beautiful!!


For longer than you’ve known, you never truly understood what a soulmate was.

Your first memory was of your mother hovering over you, inspecting the reddening bruise that was blossoming over your knee. She was looking over at you in disapproval, tutting as she tried to hush your sobs.You couldn’t help the tears that ran down your cheeks as you cradled your leg and begged your mother to make it stop hurting.The pain you felt was unlike anything you experienced before. And so you cried and cried, hoping that your screams would drown out the unpleasant sensations.

Your mother simply picked you up, whispering sweet things into your ear as she bandaged you up.

“Oh, you poor little thing,” she cooed, flicking you playfully on the nose. “Rick, you need to be more careful, or you’ll make your soulmate sad too.

Keep reading

Keith Kogan: A Portrayal of Homosexuality Done Right

I always tell people that Voltron is a lot more clever than it gets credit for. It can spin a cliche/trope on it’s head beautifully, and while all the characters are easily digestible archetypes (i.e: the nerd, the loner), the creators add layers to them that not only make them feel like real people, but also makes social commentary on those very archetypes.

In no better way do they do this than with the character of Keith.

Before I get into how and why Keith deviates from you’re typical gay male protagonist, I want to establish as a fact that Keith is homosexual.

If you don’t see - what I consider to be - blatant evidence that Keith’s gay, well, I can’t say I blame you. Most people have ingrained heteronormative lenses, meaning they’ll miss the subtext of homosexual characters. Us in the LGBT community are much more attuned to seeing these because, well, for one, we’re queer, and two, because up until around the 1960s, the portrayal of gay characters in the media was illegal and could only be shown subtextually.

So it makes sense that people overlook the very nuanced portrayal of Keith’s sexuality, but if you’re willing to take off those lenses, it’s certainly there.

The first standout appearance of this is in season 1 episode 6: Taking Flight. Or as I like to call it, the day the shows name officially changed to Gaytron: Legendary Homosexuals

I think one of the disconnects for some viewers is that they don’t completely grasp the saying, “Show don’t tell,” the mantra of pretty much every writer. Not always, but typically, showing is better than telling. Or more accurately, telling needs to be used at the correct times and for the right reasons.

So how do they show us that Keith’s gay in this episode? Through three things, body language, actions, and juxtaposition.

You don’t have to be a body language specialist to understand the clear meaning behind Keith’s posture. Leaning, looking someone up and down, and a small, lingering smile/smirk are all subconscious signs of attraction. They’re also common ways of depicting male attraction in the media.

Speaking of depicting male attraction, lets look at how Lance’s flirts in the same episode.

Leaning. Check. Lingering smile. Check. Engaged eye contact. Check. The biggest difference is how blatant they are in their intentions, but that comes down to pure character difference. Keith is self assured and more genuinely confident. He also has a lot of walls up and isn’t so open. While Lance puts on a show/over compensates so that he might appear cool. You can also see this in their respective ‘I’m-checking-you-out’ postures. Lance’s body is open, he’s engaged and his eyes are on Nyma’s eyes. While Keith’s posture is interested, but more in an appreciative way. His body is closed off, and instead of looking Rolo in the eyes, he looks at his - um - physique. This is really fitting for Keith’s character, who again, has walls, and who also puts this mission first, and most likely has no intention of letting this attraction lead to anything other than having a nice piece of eye candy around for a couple of hours.

This is textbook juxtaposition. So moving along now.

I don’t want this to be a shippy post, so I won’t add all the times I think Keith shows attraction towards Lance, but I do want to mention this scene.

The use of the rainbow(the most recognizable symbol in the gay community) over lapping the bi flag colors is relevant for the same reason why the use of purple to symbolize the Galra is relevant. Purple represents royalty, imperialism, but also gloom and danger. The use of these colors and symbols are conscious choices.

While the above scene shows that Keith is attracted to men, this scene shows that Keith is also not attracted to woman.

What I love about this scene is that it’s such a cliche, and like I said up above, Voltron is good at turning those on their head. Here they utilize the tiered and true trope of accidentally falling into each others arms. If this was a hetero-centric Romcom than this moment would’ve been obviously meant to establish attraction, but instead, it does the opposite. Rather Keith personally likes Allura or not, she’s a knock out. So, if he’s attracted to women at all, and isn’t use to having that contact- which hes not - he should be at least somewhat shocked/flustered. If it had been an attractive guy that fell into Keith’s arms, I have no doubt that his reactions would be something beyond that blank stare. Considering he literally gasps every time Lance touches him

The last piece of “evidence” I want to show isn’t as blatant and may just be my perspective, but it’s worth mentioning.

The themes of Keith’s Galra arc are very reminiscent to coming out. He’s discovering parts of himself. He’s internalizing and hiding away said parts. He’s scared of what the people he cares about will think of him when they find out. If this is intentional, it’s brilliant, because while Voltron is set in a futurist world where sexuality is supposedly not an Issue, it still is for the youth of today. Meaning by having these similar themes, Keith becomes more relatable to LGBT people.

This is the part where, if you still don’t think Keith’s gay, I’ll have to calmly yet firmly ask you to get off my fucking lawn. For the rest of you, onward to victory!!!

LGBT individuals have a history of being badly represented in the media, especially now that gay characters have become a marketing strategy for a more progressive consumer base. Their whole character is often reduced to stereotypes or used as a giant walking gay pride flag that reads: look at us, we’re hip and with the times. Meaning, the majority of these characters plots and personalities are based solely on their sexuality. Which is a problem, because not only does it not help to normalize homosexuality, but it’s just not relatable to LGBT people.

I’ll give you an example. My mom’s a lesbian. She married to a woman and has two daughters, one who is trans and one who is bi. But despite how “gay"her life may seem, she very rarely describes herself as that way. She’s not active in LGBT issues. She doesn’t involve herself in the community. Shes not lesbian first and everything else afterward, and she is certainly not alone in that experience. Don’t get me wrong, LGBT individuals are more aware of their sexuality than cishet people, but it’s typically only because others point it out and remind us that its not "normal.” Still, for a lot of LGBT people, our sexuality is just one part of our personal narrative, not the whole damn book.

Another problem with LGBT representations is that their often just built off of stereotypes. Gay men are feminized and their sexuality is typically made the butt of a joke. They are shown as being promiscuous and having commitment issues. These are the standards.

But Keith abolishes all of those, and in such a seamless way too.

While Keith’s character is in no way excessively macho, he’s certainly not feminine either. He doesn’t mind getting sweaty. He’s temperamental and has anger issue. He lived a pretty low maintenance life in a desert shack, sleeps in his jeans like a heathen, and probably uses a dagger to peel oranges. Keith is a masculine character. He’s confident and self assured, but not vain. He’s emotional, but in a very private way. Whereas many other portrayal of gay men depict them as almost theatrically sensitive, confident, but only in their sexual prowess, and self absorbed, but only when it come to their looks and not when it comes to their skills.

This is already an impressive deviation, but what really makes Keith’s portrayal stand out is the way his sexuality is but a mere footnote in what makes his character his character, and how that fits into his personality and story arc so well.

The first thing you have to realize about Keith is that, while he certainly wants to connect with people, it’s not his number one priority. He has barriers. He fears rejection, and despite wanting to feel as if he belongs, its not hard to see how Keith has been conditioned to assume he’ll inevitability be left behind, and therefore places personal relationships low on his list of priorities. Meaning, yes, he was checking out Rolo, and yes, I believe that he’s very very fond of Lance, but I can’t imagine that Keith really sees these relationships becoming something substantial or romantic, and thus doesn’t put too much effort into perusing them. You can really tell what’s important to a character by what they focus their time on. Take Lance for instance, he’s a character who blatantly cares about friendships and has no problem openly flirting. That’s not to say Lance doesn’t care about the war, just like Keith’s reluctance to pursue meaningful bonds doesn’t mean he doesn’t want them. It just means that relationships and love obviously mean a lot to Lance.

So what does Keith focus on? Well, he shows the most focus on relationships in season one, when the connections he had with his makeshift family was the post pressing thing going on. (You cant really form Voltron if you don’t connect with the other members) But after season one, with all the changes Keith goes through, we see a big shift in his priorities. First he finds out about his heritage, then Shiro disappears and he is thrust into leadership, and then most recently, he joins the Blade.

By framing Keith’s character like this, it allows the creators to make his sexuality natural and relatable in a very interesting way. Because as LGBT people know, our sexuality isn’t the most important part of our lives. Just like Keith, we have more to focus on.

That’s not to say that his sexuality will never be shown explicitly. Like I said, I don’t want to get too shippy, but I truly believe that Laith is endgame. So if and when that happens, his sexuality will naturally come into play. Sadly, their will be a lot of people who call it forced because they missed the subtext and are use to seeing gay characters depicted more as spectacles than real people.

Voltron has really done something special here. They’ve create a universe where sexuality isn’t an issue, and they make it believable by never bringing it up outside of naturally occurring, unforced, appropriate context. Even better, because the Voltron universe is so vastly different than our own, it would’ve been easy to make LGBT characters that we couldn’t relate to, but they don’t. They manage this so well that I honestly can’t phantom Keith’s sexuality being anything but homosexual despite the fact it’s never been explicitly shown.

But most importantly, they’re creating a higher standard for LGBT representation. They are normalizing it on a show aimed towards children who are heavily influenced by the media they consume.


That, my friends, is worth applauding.

the-spockicorn  asked:

Hi, I’ve been considering starting a book in the fantasy genre. I really wanted to give some Native American representation in it, since it's something that I rarely see. However, this story wouldn't take place in America, it would be in a completely different world (though one loosely based off of earth in the 14 hundreds ish?) This is similar to your mixing cultures post, but I wanted to know: is there a good way to give Native American representation in stories that aren’t historical fiction?

Representing PoC in Fantasy When Their Country/Continent Doesn’t Exist

The core of this question is something we’ve gotten across a few different ethnicities, and it basically boils down to: “how can I let my readers know these people are from a certain place without calling them by this certain place?” Aka, how can I let people know somebody is Chinese if I can’t call them Chinese, or, in your case, some Native American nation without having a North America.

Notes on Language

As I have said multiple times, there is no such thing as “Native American culture”. It’s an umbrella term. Even if you are doing fantasy you need to pick a nation and/or confederacy.

Step One

How do you code somebody as European?

This sounds like a very silly question, but consider it seriously.

How do you?

They probably live in huts or castles; there are lords and kings and knights; they eat stew and bread and drumsticks; they celebrate the winter solstice as a major holiday/new year; women wear dresses while men wear pants; there are pubs and farms and lots of wheat; the weather is snowy in winter and warm in summer.

Now swap all those components out for whatever people you’re thinking about.

Iroquois? They live in longhouses; there is a confederacy and democracy and lots of warriors from multiple nations; they eat corn, beans, and squash (those three considered sacred and grown together), with fish and wild game; they wear mostly leather garments with furs in winter; there are nights by the fire and cities and the rituals will change by the nation (remember the Iroquois were a confederacy made up of five or six tribes, depending on period); the weather is again snowy in winter and warm in summer.

Chinese? They harvest rice; there is an emperor appointed by the gods and scholars everywhere; they use a lunar calendar and have a New Year in spring; their trade ships are huge and their resources are plenty; they live in wood structures with paper walls or mud brick; they use jade and ivory for talismans; their culture is hugely varied depending on the province; their weather is mostly tropical, with monsoons instead of snow on lowlands, but their mountains do get chilly.

You get the gist.

Break down what it is that makes a world read as European (let’s be honest, usually English and Germanic) to you, then swap out the parts with the appropriate places in another culture.

Step Two

Research, research, research. Google is your friend. Ask it the questions for “what did the Cree eat” and “how did Ottoman government work.” These are your basics. This is what you’ll use to figure out the building blocks of culture.

You’ll also want to research their climate. As I say in How To Blend Cultures, culture comes from climate. If you don’t have the climate, animals, plants, and weather down, it’ll ring false.

You can see more at So You Want To Save The World From Bad Representation.

Step Three

Start to build the humans and how they interact with others. How are the trade relations? What are the internal attitudes about the culture— how do they see outsiders? How do outsiders see them? Are there power imbalances? How about greed and desire to take over?

This is where you need to do even more research on how different groups interacted with others. Native American stories are oftentimes painful to read, and I would strongly suggest to not take a colonizer route for a fantasy novel.

This does, however, mean you might not be researching how Natives saw Europeans— you’ll be researching how they saw neighbours. 

You’ll also want to look up the social rules to get a sense for how they interacted with each other, just for character building purposes.

Step Four

Sensitivity readers everywhere! You’ll really want to get somebody from the nation to read over the story to make sure you’ve gotten things right— it’s probably preferable to get somebody when you’re still in the concept stage, because a lot of glaring errors can be missed and it’s best to catch them before you start writing them.

Making mistakes is 100% not a huge moral failing. Researching cultures without much information on them is hard. So long as you understand the corrections aren’t a reflection on your character, just chalk them up to ignorance (how often do most writers get basic medical, weapon, or animal knowledge wrong? Extremely often). 

Step Five

This is where you really get into the meat of creating people. You’ve built their culture and environment into your worldbuilding, so now you have the tools you need to create characters who feel like part of the culture.

You’ll really want to keep in mind that every culture has a variety of people. While your research will say people roughly behave in a certain way, people are people and break cultural rules all the time. Their background will influence what rules they break and how they relate to the world, but there will be no one person who follows every cultural rule down to the letter. 

Step Six

Write!

Step Seven

More sensitivity readers! See step 4 for notes.

Step Eight

Rewrite— and trust me, you will need to. Writing is rewriting.

Repeat steps seven and eight until story is done.

Extra Notes

I’ll be honest— you’re probably going to need a certain amount of either goodwill (if you’re lucky enough to make friends within the group you’re trying to represent— but seriously, please do not make friends with us for the sole purpose of using us as sensitivity readers. It’s not nice) and/or money to get to publishing level. 

The good part is the first three steps are free, and these first three steps are what will allow you to hurt others less when you approach. While you’ll still likely make mistakes, you’ll make a few less (and hopefully no glaring ones, but it can/does happen) so long as you do your due diligence in making sure you at least try to understand the basics.

And once you feel like you’ve understood the basics… dive down even deeper because chances are you’re about to reach a tipping point for realizing how little you know.

People will always find you did something wrong. You will never get culture 100% accurate— not even people who were born and raised in it will, because as I said in step five: cultures have a huge variety of people in them, so everyone will interact with it differently. But you can work your hardest to capture one experience, make it as accurate as possible, and learn more for next time.

~ Mod Lesya 

Introduction: Hi! I’m Annie, I recently graduated as valedictorian of a class of almost 700, and I’m about to be a freshman at Johns Hopkins (go blue jays!!). High school was some of the best and worst moments of my life, and looking back, there are so many things that I wish I’d done and things that made me successful, so I wanted to share them! Of course, disclaimer, these tips may not apply to everyone!

(These tips generally apply to all classes, but if you have a specific subject you want tips on, I’ve taken these AP courses: european history, world history, us gov’t, macroeconomics, lang, lit, calc ab, chemistry, physics 1, physics c, environmental science, art: drawing, biology, human geography, chinese, and art history. Feel free to message me!)

College applications are a crapshoot- I can’t begin to tell you the number of incredible, brilliant people with extraordinary, international level achievements that got denied at top schools in favor of those lacking those accomplishments. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mean those who got in don’t have qualities that earned them a spot, it just speaks to the unpredictable nature of the college application process. When deans of admission at top schools openly say they could reject all admitted students and build the same exemplary class from the waitlist, or that they have enough qualified applicants to fill 3 or 4 classes with, there’s a certain amount of luck involved. Therefore I urge all rising seniors to go into this process realizing that the odds are not in your favor. I went into the process with too much blind hope, too confident in my ability to be that lucky 1 in 10 (or less) that would gain admission, and I was sorely disappointed. So that leads me to my next tip…

Don’t do things just for your college application- Those slim acceptance rates are the exact reason I urge you not to join things solely for how good they look on a college application. It seems counterintuitive; wouldn’t they give you a better chance of acceptance? However, my point is not to dissuade you from extracurriculars, but rather to commit to ones that genuinely make you happy. As I wrote above, the process is so competitive that even international achievements may mean rejection, so don’t waste your high school experience by dedicating so much time and effort to something that you feel obligated to do.

Try everything your freshman and sophomore year- My biggest regret is not joining clubs where my passions lie simply because I was too lazy or scared of things like public speaking my freshman year. It’s much more intimidating to join as upperclassmen, and you may not be able to participate at all the levels/in all the ways people who have dedicated 3-4 years can. Even if you don’t think its for you (like debate for me because of my fear of public speaking), I urge you to expand your horizons and push yourself out of your comfort zone. Many clubs give you great opportunities to build leadership, public speaking, etc. skills and to find your passions.

Know both sides of the flashcard- I learned this tip from my organic chemistry class, and I’d never though about how useful it is. For example, if you’re memorizing polyatomic ions, it’s extremely important that you know both the formula and the name, as either version may show up on the exam. Not doing this also makes the weaknesses in your memorization evident- whenever I study vocab, I tend to glance at the side with the term and only memorize the definition. This meant that when I was given only the definitions, I couldn’t remember the word they defined, because I was so used to being given the vocab word and responding with the definition. 

The first lecture of the unit is one of the most important for STEM classes- I know the beginning of the unit can often seem like the perfect time to tune out, as it goes over information you’ve previously learned or the easiest material of the topic, but it often forms the foundation for everything else in the unit. For example, the first lecture on a stoichiometry unit will probably teach you dimensional analysis, a skill integral to calculating molecular or empirical formulas, moles or grams of a substance, etc. 

Buy/sell books secondhand- Everyone knows how expensive college textbooks are, but between SAT and AP prep books, and books for English, high school books can cost quite a bit of money too. Unless they redesigned the exam recently, you absolutely don’t need the newest edition of the review book, so buy from upperclassmen and then sell it to underclassmen the following year.

Learn to self study- Unless you’re really lucky, you’re guaranteed to have a teacher who doesn’t teach, teaches badly, or whose teaching style just doesn’t work for you. Personally, I find that self learning, especially if I’m struggling because resources such as textbooks and online explanations, and videos seem to contradict, really helps me understand the topic throughly. In AP bio, my teacher had us create claymation videos on the processes of cellular respiration and photosynthesis independently. It was incredibly frustrating and confusing because all the resources described the cycles in varying degrees of details, but I felt like I genuinely understood the topic, instead of having been spoon-fed the information and memorizing it. Obviously, this method isn’t very efficient for frequent use, but the key is to try to understand the material independently instead of going to the teacher the moment you hit a snag. 

Keep your backpack/binders/notebooks reasonably organized- When teachers ask for homework to be passed up and you have to dig through mountains of papers in your backpack, not only is that super stressful, but a lot of teachers won’t let you turn it in after they have already collected all the papers. I was definitely guilty of being lazy and just stuffing papers, once I got them, into my backpack instead of taking a few seconds to slide them into a binder, and as a result I got 0s on lots of homework because either I couldn’t find it at the time or because everything was so messy I didn’t remember there was homework. Try to have some sort of organization system going on or at least a homework folder, because those 0s add up and can be the difference between an 89 and 90. 

You’re gonna get senioritis, badly, and that’s ok- I’ve always been the type of person who did every homework assignment and was very focused on grades, so the idea that I would completely let myself ago seemed absurd to me. Don’t underestimate what senior year does to you. I can honestly count on one hand the econ worksheets that I actually turned in during senior year, and I made my first B in a grading period during the spring. I was very stressed about how awful my grades were, but unable to muster the energy to do anything about it. And you know what, it’s ok. It’s senior year, you can give yourself a break. Yes, your senior grades are still important for college applications, so don’t go from straight A’s to straight C’s, but for the most part, all the hard work is behind you. Do keep in mind that these habits may haunt you when you’re a college freshman. I haven’t started classes yet, but based on how little I studied for the math placement exam for my college, senioitis doesn’t magically end when you graduate, so don’t let it get completely out of control during the year. 

Learn how to do math without a calculator- If you take either of the AP Calculuses or the SAT, you need to master this skill because there are sections of the exams that are strictly non-calculator.  Beyond that, when you get to calculus, you’ll be introduced to complicated concepts, where not being able to multiply by hand will drag you down. 

Keep old notes- Not only for finals, but some topics are very interdisciplinary, like biochemistry, so it’s very important that you have a working knowledge of both biology and chemistry. As you take advanced classes, such as for me, taking physics c after physics 1, it will be assumed that you have completely mastered the basics, and they will be skipped or referenced very quickly. It is very useful to look at notes on the basics, which provide the foundation for the advanced material you learn. 

Invest in a whiteboard- Whenever I was learning about processes or cycles, from the Krebs cycle to organic chemistry mechanisms, it was really useful to practice drawing the steps over and over again. Then when it came to the test, I could do a brain dump and draw out the information as a reference. 

Understand formulas instead of blindly memorizing- This basically has physics and calculus written all over it. In physics, you should be given formula charts during exams, and in any case, something like F=ma isn’t terribly hard to memorize. The problem comes when there are a multitude of formulas that are derived from one of the fundamental equations. Of course, deriving from scratch each time is incredibly tedious, but I want to dissuade you from simply memorizing it or storing it on your calculator, because that means you probably don’t understand the physics behind it. What makes physics so difficult and different from any other subject you’ve taken is that every problem will have a slightly different scenario that tests your understanding of the physics behind it. 

Use all the time given to you during tests- I know I hate looking back through my test because I just get so bored halfway through, but missing points because of silly mistakes is honestly the most frustrating thing ever when you had plenty of time to check. Depending on if I have time, I like to cover my original work and resolve the question. If checking answers is not your thing, try slowing now when you first see each question, and checking your work briefly each step. 

Form study groups- Talking about something, especially teaching it to someone, always helped me remember something so much better than reading it on paper. It’s also so important to have second interpretations of the information you’re studying to ensure that you don’t make a huge misconception.  

AP students: released/practice exams are your best friend- Obviously, they’re the best resources for studying for the AP exam, but they’re also a great tool for a hint at what your teacher’s tests may look like. AP teachers have access to tons of College Board material and will often use questions directly from old exams. 

If you start getting confused during a lecture- Many times this is because I didn’t pay attention during the very beginning, so I’m missing that important foundation I talked about in the previous tip. Of course, I typically wouldn’t recommend doing things other than listening to what is currently being taught, but in this case, I would just get more confused and it’s a waste of time. So I discretely go back to my previous notes and focus on understanding them. 

The most stressful part of schoolwork is just thinking about your assignments- There’s always specific period of time that threatens to kill me- a week where I had two competitions simultaneously, in cities 3 hours apart. When you’re taking 7 AP classes at the same time, just reading over your to-do list will make you want to cry. Even on a normal day, as I go to classes throughout the day and my list of homework gets longer and longer, it makes me so stressed to where I’m planning out how to finish everything and I’m no longer listening in class. It overwhelmed me so much that I just wanted to take a nap and avoid school. But every single time, stressing about the work I have is 1000x worse than sitting down and actually going through each task. I find that what had seemed impossible before was very doable, and many times I even finished early enough to relax before bed. Keep a positive mindset, don’t underestimate your abilities, and have the discipline to start working immediately on the hardest days, and you’ll be fine. Of course, this doesn’t mean that the workload that is able to be handled by one person can work for another, and things like mental illnesses are things I have no experience in, so this is definitely just something that worked for me and is not applicable to everyone. 


Best of luck with high school! If you have any questions, feel free to send me an ask!

My AP World masterpost

Asks I’ve answered about school

anonymous asked:

Excuse me, but... why do you hate when straight woman go to a gay bar? I'm a straight woman and I live in Madrid, and here lot of straight people like going out around the gay area (Chueca). I sometimes go with my boyfriend, with my friends, and sometimes with my gay friends, who are very happy I go out with them in Chueca. For me, going to a gay bar is like going to any other bar. Wouldn't be homophobe if I said, no way I am gonna go to a gay bar/gay area? Sorry for my english.

Hi love. Your English is fine! 

This is a complicated issue, and I will try and speak about it to the best of my ability. First off: if I said I hate when straight women go to gay bars, I was speaking hyperbolically and being reactionary, which is totally my right as a lesbian who seeks safe space the same way any gay man does. But the truth is,  that I don’t SIMPLY hate it, every time, always. I hate the way it changes how gay bars feel to me, and I hate the culture it creates and lends itself to. It’s something I have nuanced and complex feelings about. 

Like, I understand why straight women enjoy going to gay bars. I know often times straight women just want to have a good time and get away from straight men, and as someone who ALSO wants desperately to get away from straight men,  I get how gay bars can provide that space. 

However, many straight women can be super disrespectful to that space because they don’t understand the historical significance of gay bars for gay people. Here are some of the things that are really damaging that I see on the regular. Not all of them are specific things all straight women do at gay bars, but they ARE inevitable affects of the PRESENCE of straight women and straight culture within an LGBTQ space: 

1. straight women sometimes get offended when lesbians hit on them at gay bars, which is absurd because….it’s a gay bar. You’re in our space. I also regularly witness straight women acting particularly disparaging or even DISGUSTED by butch women in gay bars, which really hurts and is so cruel and disrespectful. The amount of times I’ve seen gay men band together with straight women to mock butch culture/appearances is innumerable. 

2. At least in LA, its become such a commonplace thing for LOTS of straight women to go to gay bars, that they out number the amount of lesbians/wlw. First off, this just feels awful and isolating for us, but additionally, it makes lots of wlw so uncomfortable that they don’t feel safe cruising/asking women to dance because the probability of the girl being straight is really high. Can you imagine how lonely, scary, and frustrating this would feel for wlw to go to a bar that is supposed to be FOR THEM and feel afraid and outnumbered by straight women? 

3. Lots of straight women treat gay bars like some wild tourist space.  They get to come to the gay part of town and watch the gays interact in their natural habitat, they get to see crazy wild freaky things like boys in make up and butch girls in plaid and go-go dancers and hot guys making out! How titillating and exciting and funny! Now, I’m not saying you do this, personally, but you have to understand that MANY straight women DO. It feels awful and hurtful to just want to go out and dance and be yourself AWAY from the cruelty and scrutiny of straight people, and end up at a bar where you’re getting watched like a sideshow ANYWAY. 

4. Many straight women bring their boyfriends. For numerous wlw and MANY gay men, straight men are traumatizing. They are our abusers. They’re the last thing we want to see in our safe space. NOTHING makes me feel more unsafe and invaded and shitty at a gay bar than the presence of straight men. And if there are straight women, there are likely going to be straight men, at least eventually.  Now, even aside from them making me feel flat out unsafe an horrible, it’s also just disheartening and irritating to see straight couples taking up space in an LGBTQ environment when I’m literally trying to get away from them! I don’t want to see straight people making out. I don’t to see straight people dancing. I don’t want to see straight people standing by the bar pointing at us. If I wanted all that, I wouldn’t be going to a GAY BAR.  

5. Again, at least in LA, it’s so common for straight women to go to gay bars that straight men will actually go to gay bars with the intention of finding straight women, because they KNOW it’s a place where single women congregate. I kid you not, it’s a pick up artist “trick” to go to gay bars. This means, predatory straight men in LGBTQ spaces, trying to hit on women. This INCLUDES WLW because sometimes they can’t tell the difference or literally don’t care!!! I DO NOT WANT to be around straight men, even the ones who are there with their girlfriends, so I ESPECIALLY don’t want to be around the type of straight guy who is looking for a hook up!  I don’t want to be hit on my straight men, I don’t want my bi friends or my femme friends who came to a gay bar looking for solace and to escape unwanted attention to be hit on or checked out by straight men IN THEIR OWN SPACE!!!

I remember the first time a straight man hit on me at a gay bar, I started dancing with him, close and kind of sexy, because it’s not uncommon for lesbians to dance with gay men like that in a playful way. Then, he started touching me, and I thought it was a little weird but was like “whatever he’s probably gay” and THEN HE KISSED ME and it was like my fucking world came crashing down. I felt so terrified and unsafe and dirty, and when I tried to scramble away and was like “Oh my god I’m gay stop” he literally said, and I will never forget this, “I don’t care. You didn’t a minute ago.” 

Whether or not you realize it, the presence of straight women in LGBTQ spaces leads to the eventual normalization of this type of behavior. Straight people and particularly straight men are ALWAYS coopting space that doesn’t belong to them and making it unsafe for LGBTQ people, who are ostracized outsiders who live in danger everywhere else. If I can’t go to a gay bar to get away from these types of men, where can I go? If my friends can’t go to a gay bar to pick up women, where can they go? 

NOW, you mentioned you were from Spain. I have never been to Spain and have relatively no idea what the gay scene/bar scene is like there. Some of this might not be relevant to you personally, and I’m sensitive to the fact I’m speaking from the experience of someone who grew up clubbing in West Hollywood/LA, so this might not apply to you. It might be different in Spain, and I get that you want to support your gay friend when you go out with him. That makes sense to me, and I know there are ways straight women can be respectful in LGBTQ spaces. 

But please, consider all of this. Also, you said something that really stuck out to me: “ For me, going to a gay bar is like going to any other bar.”

That stings, because for us, going to a gay bar is NOT like going to any other bar. Going to a gay bar is like going home, or it should be. You have to understand we don’t get to feel safe or supported most of the time when we exist in the world. We have to seek out those safe spaces, so when those safe spaces get infiltrated by the people who make the rest of the world unsafe for us, IT HURTS. We don’t want gay bars to be like any other bar, they need to be treated as the very specific, historically significant, cultural phenomenon that they are. It’s not just a rainbow on the wall that makes a gay bar a gay bar. I hope that makes sense. 

Further reading here! 

Honestly gettin’ pretty sick of people coming to me to trash Joseph whenever I say he’s a complicated character with a lot of nuance, so hey, here’s my take on the whole Mary-Robert-Joseph situation.

I’ll put this all under a cut so here are some disclaimers; This is full of spoilers, I’m writing this under the assumption that all the cult end stuff is non-canon, and yes, this is only one possible interpretation of the information we can glean from the character interactions (also, taken from what may later prove to be incomplete information as more endings are unlocked/glitches are fixed/content is released). I like it because I think it’s the most interesting and empathetic for all of the characters involved and because I don’t think it’s the kind of situation that necessarily has to have a “villain”.

Keep reading

Everything Has Changed (Part One)

Summary: In which everything changes when you discover Bucky’s true feelings for you in a very unconventional manner.

Pairing: Bucky x Reader

Word Count: 2,880

A/N: The goal is to make this a mini-series. Fingers crossed that it stays that way. 

Originally posted by caps-bucky

“All clear,” you whisper. For anyone else, those words would’ve been indiscernible because of how softly they were spoken. Luckily for you, you’re not with just anyone. You’re with a super soldier equipped with enhanced hearing.

From across the empty hallway, Bucky abandons his spot behind a tall filing cabinet and runs towards you, keeping his gun up and ready to shoot at any given moment.

Keep reading

Victor’s Bad Days...

Yuuri will easily come right out and say it.

Some days, Yuuri Katsuki does not want to get up. He doesn’t want to exist, he wants to disappear and never be seen again no matter how wonderful his life may end up. People close to him have known about his anxiety episodes for years. The closest of those people know how to deal with it; when to give him space and when to support him.
He’s satisfied with that group and knows how to cope on his own, accepting that those bad days do not define him. Everyone deserves to take time off sometimes to just breathe…

Everyone, Victor thinks, except himself.

He won’t admit it to anyone, even himself, that a Living Legend can have bad days.

When those days would come before, he’d shut his mind off and focus solely on his skating career. It’s not like he was close enough to anyone for them to notice that something may have been “off”; all his rink mates saw him as a man married to the sport and considered his aloof behavior normal. Little did they know how often Victor wished someone, anyone, would just tell him that he’s not okay and that that fact was okay.

The only person who undoubtedly can see right through him is Yuuri Katsuki, and he always knows when he’s having one of those days. It can be frustrating for someone so used to being alone, but he’s learning to accept the concern and open up a little more when he feels depressed.

Still, it’s difficult, and he almost always denies the real problem.

Keep reading

A Killer First Chapter

Anonymous asked:

Do you have any advise on how to open a story? I have all my characters and my plot and my conflict and everything but I don’t know how to start. How to keep a reader hooked and interested enough to keep going.

This is a little ironic, because I’m about to rewrite my opening three chapters for The Warlord’s Contact from scratch for about the tenth time. But practice does make perfect, and boy have I learned a lot through this process.

Sometimes you look at a story and you just know how it needs to open. It’s the most obvious choice in the world, and it’s clear why no other option would work.

Unfortunately, that’s not often the case. Usually, the beginning to your book will take preplanning and rewriting and replanning and bit more rewriting, and all the while you’ll never quite be sure you chose the best spot to open to, or the right characters to introduce, or the proper setting. 

Here are a few specific methods of thought for tackling your first chapter…

Keep reading

The Secret Book Club

Originally posted by lokihiddleston

Pairing: Loki x Reader

Content/Warnings: Innuendos and a cheeky Loki and a very very shitty book. Also mild swears.

Words: 1767

Prompt: LOKI X READER WHO SHARE BOOKS AND READ TO EACHOTHER AND LOTS OF FLUFF HHH THAT WOULD BE SO CUTE PLEASE

Soooo this turned out much different than what I expected, (sorry anon I was having too much fun) but there is most definitely going to be a part 2 to this coming soon. At the request of a few people I’m starting a tag list, so if you want in then just shoot me a message! :)

Enjoy ;)

@mrsethedreamqueen@asometimestroubledmind

Part two
Part three
Part four
Part five
Part six
Part seven (NSFW)

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Humans are space orcs, eh?

I’m new to this, but I love what I’m reading in the feed lately, so, trying my hand!

Some ideas:

What if the greatest diplomacy problem in dealing with humans is that they seem to lie about past events constantly, even to someone who witnessed the same events?  Then it’s discovered that humans have recording devices of all kinds– security cameras, diaries, mp3– and the problem becomes clear.  Humans lie, but not that badly.  The poor, fretful creatures just have a species-wide brain defect.  Kindly aliens take to recording every event and encounter they can, then preface every diplomatic meeting with a record swap so the humans can brush up on what actually happened and the aliens can get some insight into what the humans have been falsely thinking happened.  Ambassadors to Earth get supplementary training in how to handle people with memory impairments, and human ambassadors to other worlds start hiring aliens– ANY aliens– to be their assistants.  Everything smooths out after that.

Religion.  Aliens intellectually understand how religion works and that there are different kinds, but they don’t really “get” it.  The biggest confusion regards whether the humans, who do seem to have some sort of empathic abilities at least, are actually communing with incorporeal beings/forces… and if so, why some humans seem able to commune with more than one, while other humans not at all.  Notable scholars have decided that the rituals and paraphernalia have nothing to do with the beings or forces being communed with, but muddied the matter by suggesting that the rituals may be important for a human’s ability to commune.  Alien non-scholars, eager to accommodate this new species and prove that space is nothing to be afraid of– nobody wants a repeat of the H’j’g’rcxin Xenophobia disaster– simply treat any and all religious requests as vital necessities for their human guests and crewmen.  Accommodation becomes so ordinary that when the first religious argument erupts between an engineer and a navigator, the biggest shock is that one of them objects to the other wearing a turban, something which does not affect work performance in any way.

Styling.  Alien species each have their own primary sense that they rely on, and when they find out that humans primarily rely on sight, well.  Reliant on sight means that surface patterns and colorings are particularly important to them, right?  They will have evolved to be individually distinctive in appearance?  New human crew are automatically assigned a mentor from another vision-reliant species, so someone will be able to tell them apart until the auditory and pheromone labels are attached to their uniforms.  Then Abby comes to mess with a new haircut and sparkly chapstick one day, and the mentor has no idea who she is or how she got aboard.

Word of Stabby the Space Roomba spreads, and soon every ship with a human captain or sufficiently high number of human crew has a Stabby.  Names vary, but most of them are Stabby.  One ship becomes low-key known for sending out broadcasts of Stabby McStabberson, son of Stabberson, son of Stabber, and its adventures stabbing juice boxes in zero-G.

Aesthetics.  Humans have a bewildering tendency to open starmaps or sneak into the scientific observation module at odd times, including with a mate or offspring, and just stare at open space.  Not even particular stars, although they like to study and talk about particular stars and clusters at times, but just, the whole of space.  Why do they do it?  Nobody knows.  Humans behave as though intoxicated during these times, but productivity lowers dramatically if they are barred access– if barring access even works in the first place, given humans’ seemingly endless ability to get into places where they aren’t supposed to be.

Fire.  Due to different atmospheric content, inability to heal from burns, or just plain never needing to cook their food, no alien species has ever utilized fire as a tool.  When humans say that learning to use fire may have been the start of their civilization, everybody believes that the humans are just talking a tough game to make up for their lower technology level, or– once they learn about human hierarchies– to compensate for a perceived lack of political status.  Then a human sees a catastrophic explosion on a hostile planet and laughs.  Then another shushes panicking engineers and smothers an accidental fire with some garments.  Then another builds a bonfire out of dead plantlife and a shredded religious document to warm an injured alien crewman after xir endothermic suit is punctured and the planet rotates away from its sun.  Humans– soft, cuddly, pack-bonds-even-with-inanimate-objects humans– are comfortably in control of the most terrifying force of disaster the galaxy has ever known.  Aliens stop being surprised that we nearly made ourselves extinct so many times in history.

“Why does your larval stage look so similar to your mature stage?  How do you know when a human is old enough to leave the Pit of Offspring?  Or to mate?”

Understanding Dean

I wanted to talk more about all the Dean and Cas moments in 13x06. I was so busy flailing like a lunatic last night, and while I mentioned it briefly in my watch notes, I do think these moments of intimacy between them are telling of a bigger picture and worth examining more closely.

Look at just how much insight Cas has into how Dean works…

When Jack mentions Dodge City, Dean gets that dopey, bashful look on his face whenever he wants something badly. And it’s Cas that gives him a pointed and knowing look in return. 

It’s intentional, and our gaze is deliberately draw first to Dean, and then Cas’s reaction. Not Sam’s, who by all accounts in canon, has precisely the same amount of exposure to Dean and cowboys in 6x18. All flailing about the unwritten implications aside (okay not completely aside, because just think for a minute about how Cas has come to know this as intimately as he does), Cas knows inherently that this is something that gets Dean excited. And later, when Jack looks on in incredulity at Dean’s unabashed fanboying over the motel room and the old cowboys…

Jack: He really likes cowboys.
Cas: Yes, yes he does. 

I have trouble reading Cas’s line here as anything other than long-suffering. In my eyes, he’s framed as a long-suffering spouse who’s put up with this reluctantly, but lovingly, for what feels like forever. But whether you read their exchange as something more intimate, or just as a long-suffering friend, it’s still long-suffering. As in, Cas has had to bear witness to Dean’s cowboy obsession time and time and time again. We only know of one other instance in canon where Dean has had this particular kink on display: 6x18′s Frontierland. I’ll grant you Cas is a drama queen, but Frontierland on its own is just not enough to warrant this level of exasperation in Cas, because it was Sam who went back in time with Dean then and bore the brunt of Dean’s enthusiasm for the Wild West. 

Next, Cas knows that Dean is an angry sleeper. And okay, I’m not setting the flailing aside on this one, because JUST HOW DO YOU KNOW THAT, CAS? HMMM? We know canonically that Cas has a history of watching Dean sleep. We now know that he has a history of waking him up as well, and Cas knows how to do that in a way that is gentle and soft enough not to wake the sleeping bear as well. I would very much like to see precisely how Cas wakes Dean up.

And the coffee? That whole scene was so delightfully domestic. You get the sense that this is a ritual– a daily routine that they go through.  I adore the silent, wordless exchange between them and Cas just plunking himself down in resignation. Communication without words requires intimacy and familiarity with someone else, and we’re seeing that in spades here. 

When they split up to tackle the case, I love that it’s Sam who splits them the way that he does: Jack will stay with Sam, and Cas will go with Dean. It’s not necessarily the most logical choice, and it would have made arguably more sense for Cas to go with Jack.  I like to think that Sam is acknowledging that his brother and Cas need some space alone. 

Which leads me to my final point. Just as moments within an episode can’t stand alone and must be taken in context, so too should we look at the overall season arc and the choices that are made to put episodes where they are in chronology. 13x06 falls right after the episode in which Sam is trying is absolute, adorable best to cheer Dean up, but he’s doing it in all the wrong ways. I’m not saying that Sam doesn’t understand Dean, because he’s absolutely close with Dean and has to know things about him that others don’t because of their close proximity all their lives. But I feel like they’re making it glaringly obvious over the course of the past few episodes that Sam doesn’t relate to Dean in the way that Cas does, and contrary to whatever bullshit Dean might spew, Cas is not his brother

Sam’s insight into Dean (at least in the previous few episodes, and he certainly has a history of this in the past too) is well-intentioned and loving, but misguided. Frankly, I blame Dean for that because of how carefully he’s kept Sam from truly seeing him. The contrast between Cas and Sam and how they both relate to Dean is fascinating. Sam seeing the sanitized, performing Dean facade, whereas Cas sees beneath it. 

I’ve wavered in the past between “Sam knows” and “Sam is an oblivious moose.” I’m beginning to lean more in the direction of oblivious moose, not necessarily because that’s where I think Sam’s at, but because that seems to be the direction the writers are taking him in– as a stand-in for casual viewers and the lens through which we see the dynamic between Cas and Dean.

indy-ts4  asked:

Hi I'm indy I'm a new follower I plan on going in to computer science! Any advice ?

Hi there! Ohhh that’s so awesome, good luck! Computer science is an amazing subject to study! I was terrified at first because I haven’t had much experience in coding before going to uni, but you’re going to be just FINE trust me!  ✨

💻  first of all DON’T BE SCARED YOU CAN’T CODE - that’s why you’re going to computer science in the first place, to learn to code. Of course, there’s going to be people who are pro-coders already, but don’t get intimidated by them, find your own pace and just do your thing! They’re probably repeating the year anyway or they transferred.

💻  I know in computer science you’re mostly like ‘why do I need lectures when I need to CODE not listen about coding’, but trust me GO TO LECTURES - I attended (almost) every lecture possible during my first year and it really made a World of a difference especially if you’re a newbie to all of this! You’ll meet the professors and you’ll know what they’re expecting of you and they’ll probably tell you some funny stories as well. Plus you’ll have more familiar faces on the campus :) 

💻  DO SOME READING - there’s one lecture that I didn’t go to and that was a mistake I tell you. I didn’t go because the lecturer's voice was boring and I was literally falling asleep. But after I did some reading about the subject before the exam I realized his words were very valuable, but unfortunately if you already knew a bit about the subject, so if you have a subject that bores you - do some reading on your own and then go to the lecture. you’ll get much more information out of it! 

💻  CODE AT HOME - after you’ve practiced some skills during the classes, go home and practice them again on your own. Try doing something useful or fun with it. Like make it print out “Yolo” in a circle (I did that, no regrets lmao)

💻  INSTALL ALL THE SOFTWARE DURING YOUR FIRST WEEK - install all the things you’re going to need during the year on your first week, honestly, please do! It’ll save you time later on. As soon as the professor mentions what you should install, note it down, go home, install it. 

💻  PRACTICE EVEN REALLY SIMPLE THINGS - if you don’t understand anything just type it on youtube and you’ll find plenty of the video tutorials which ARE AMAZING. They helped me a lot with understanding some stuff I couldn’t get a grip of. And I know you’ll find some stuff that you’re like “I don’t need to practice this, this is trivial” IT’S NOT and you’ll get it wrong if you don’t code it at least once, just do it, it’ll take like 30s. 

💻  here are some links which really helped me out and I would recommend checking out beforehand: 
* c++ step by step video tutorials with Bucky (Bucky saved me before the exam)
* learn c++ in one video ( doesn’t really teach you c++ in one video, but there’s some useful stuff especially if you’re new to this) 
* sorting algorithms with hungarian folk dance (lmao these are really useful, I promise) 
* codeacademy (here’s just basic coding, but good to start with :) )
*  introduction to 3D graphics with Blender ( THE GOD OF BLENDER) 
and finally:
* incredibly realistic wolf animation 

HAVE FUN, RELAX AND GOOD LUCK!  ✨ ✨ ✨ ✨ Hope this helped! 

Venus: The Goddess of Love

Venus rules all things beautiful in love, lust, and desire, so it only makes sense that this placement represents how you attract your lovers. This sign is where you express love in all types of relationships, such as family, friends, crushes, and significant others. When looking at compatibility between you and your love interest, combinations of both your sun and venus sign are essential to getting a better understanding of each other. Often times your venus and sun signs may be the same which in turn cause an ever bigger influence on your acts of love, but this may not happen every time. Venus rules Libra and Taurus which means both signs are associated with beauty, sensuality, and materialism. If you have Venus in Libra or Venus in Taurus these placements are comfortable here since the planets are in place with their ruler. 

Venus in Aries: The admirable child-like spirit in Aries is no different in this placement. You attract your lovers with your ability to literally not give a fuck. You go after you want, no questions asked. You don’t like to waste time so anyone who plays games is getting cut off. Your actions are impulsive, almost selfish, actually very selfish, but this won’t be a problem to the person who really understands you. However, you will be attracted to many people since you get bored easily and can fall in and out of love quickly. Overall, you exude confidence, are not afraid to stand out, and you want things to be simple & direct. 

Venus in Taurus: Loyalty and constant devotion are your greatest attributes with friends and family. In love you seek security and comfortability often ruling out those who are fake and filled with drama. You enjoy fine dining and fine living. You are what they call husband or wifey material because of your desire to settle down and build a home with someone, kind of like Cancer. Change does not come easy to you so you may find yourself stubborn and set in your ways when it comes to love. The strong appetite for sensual gratification in the bull reaches from the dining table to the bedroom, and they will make sure you are taken care of in both matters. 

Venus In Gemini: It’s a no brainer that the way to your heart is through your mind. This Gemini is fun, flirty, and just wants to enjoy life in a number of ways. For this reason, you can only be tied down by someone who is capable of keeping you interested for, essentially, the rest of your life. It’s important for you to truly get to know a person before getting into a relationship. Otherwise, if you are not stimulated you will move on quickly. There is never a dull moment with you and you just want to be surrounded by other individuals who share this same interest. In matters of love, the dual personality shows a good side and a dark side, but this combination creates a unique, and inspiring individual.

Venus in Cancer: You are attracted to those who need you. You aim to nurture and provide an emotional blanket for your loved ones. Your intuition runs high and you use this to better take care of your partner. Although this can make them vulnerable because you might meddle into their lives to make sure you are needed. Depending on your sun or moon sign, you can be quite emotional and hurt easily but hide it well. Like any Cancer, once you get into your shell it’s hard to get you out of it. You are loyal, a great listener, and create families out of your friends. Overall, you have a big heart and this makes you very attractive. 

Venus in Leo: In order for your heart’s desire to be satisfied you need to be loved at all times. Sex isn’t even all that important to you if you’re not being made the center of attention. Feelings of insecurity rise for the Leo when you are not told that you are different or special. You don’t want to be like everyone else, you want to stand out. You are loyal, generous, and love hard. You have a lust for life and surround yourself with colorful people. Your sunny personality makes you fun to be around. You live a lavish life and show off your relationships and hope to be shown off the same way. It’s important for your loved ones to express their love to you in grand gestures because you expect the royal treatment. 

Venus in Virgo: Like Cancer, you want your loved ones to need you and appreciate you, this makes you happiest. You work quietly into the heart of others, taking your time getting to know people by observing them. Punctuality is important to you and you take this into matters of love as well often focusing on practical aspects of a relationship rather than being romantic. You don’t ask for much in a relationship but your partner might find it hard to satisfy what you want because you focus on small details that one can easily ignore. The pickiest of all signs, the person who wants the key to your heart has to be perfect or at least close to it. Is that too much to ask? Maybe, but you’re not willing to settle for anything less.

Venus in Libra: The world you envision is one of peace and serenityYou treat others the way you’d want to be treated. When all is well, both you and your partner are putting in the same effort into the relationship. Because of how dependent you are, you will most likely always be in a relationship. You’re all about fairness. You don’t like to stir the pot so you might conform to other people’s needs just to be likable, especially to stronger personalities that make you feel threatened. However, your personable appearance and amazing social skills cause you to be attractive to others no matter what you look like. A hopeless romantic you enjoy all the beauties of romance and want your love story to be like a fairytale. 

Venus in Scorpio: Intense. Intense. Intense. The dark and mysterious qualities of Scorpio are strong in this placement since their actions are affecting their love interests. In relationships, you want all or nothing. You want someone to surrender to you and give you control. In return, you give your full attention and extreme loyalty. Consequently, you are jealous and possessive, although this can be flattering to some people. Secretive, you don’t give much away about yourself, but want to know every detail of your significant other. You can read your friends as plain as day because of how well you can pick up vibes of other people. Your strongest asset is that you are not afraid of change, in fact, you thrive on the transformation of change. 

Venus in Sagittarius: Variety is the spice of life for you. You are always roaming, moving from one place to another, never really committing to anyone. Wherever you go you’re having a good time and searching for new experiences and knowledge. You’re fun to be around because of your free spirit, open-mindedness, and ability to entertain. You take pride in what you know and can be quite judgmental, but you’re very honest. You’re attracted to people of different cultures because you want to learn their different backgrounds and experiences. In love you just want someone who is going to partake in all your adventures and not ask too much of you since you value your freedom and independence. 

Venus in Capricorn: Reserved and humble, you attract others by keeping to yourself. Those who are willing to get to know you will do so. Very goal oriented and smart, you hope that your friends are as hardworking as you. In relationships you want what is cautious and safe since you are willing to build a home and family with this person. Social class is important to you so you care about how much money you make and might marry into wealth if possible. Although you are guarded in public, you are able to get in tune with your emotions in private. You’re affectionate and can express your love in various ways. Creating partnerships comes natural to you and people will know you to be loyal and responsible. 

Venus in Aquarius: No restrictions, no emotions, no fucks given. You basically do what you want and won’t settle for anything less. In love, however, you are committed and willing to compromise to your lover’s needs, only if they are worth it. But until then, if you are single, you are sufficient all on your own. You enjoy being eccentric and attract your crushes by making yourself stand out. Ahead of your time, you feel as though you have visionary thoughts. You are able to inspire others, although, at first they don’t understand you, but once they do, you’ve already moved on to the next thing. Your loved ones appreciate your oddities and quirks since this is what makes you special to them. Direct and honest you try to be as real as possible. 

Venus in Pisces: The type of love you seek is one that is soft hearted, empathetic, and a bit sensitive. You are intuitive and able to pick up the mood of others so you’re very understanding of people’s emotions. You are attracted to those who need saving or you yourself want to be saved. Loud and abrasive people make you uncomfortable because you suffer too many moods to be dealing with insensitive people. Because of how empathetic you may be, friends or lovers may take advantage of you since you can be afraid to say no. Feelings of insecurity rise when you are not being loved the way you wish to be. Since you are able to love people so deeply you want the same in return. Three words that sum you up: compassionate, mystical, and wistful. 

How To Create a Self-Study Schedule Part II: Casual Studying

Hello polyglots! I apologize for the lateness of this post! As you know I posted about how to create a study schedule if you are studying a language(s) intensively. Now I’m going to talk about how to study one language or multiple languages casually.

First, I need to define what casual studying even means. Studying casually means that you are foregoing certain aspects of language study in order to maintain a slow and low commitment pace. For example, say you’re learning French casually. Instead of psycho crazy grammar schedules filled with practicing grammar and vocab over and over, and quizzing yourself every day until your brain turns to pulp, you opt for a simple audio lesson every day for 15 minutes after you come home from work or school. Easy right? Yes! That’s the goal. With casual studying your schedule is freed up for other things. In addition, casual studying gives you the leisure to take your time to learn things deeply and thoroughly. Casual studying, however, implies that you are not studying so much for full fluency but for practical, everyday usage. So casual learners care a little less about learning the specifics about complicated grammar but instead want to learn how to use it in conversation by learning dialogues and repeating phrases. So how do you create a casual study schedule? Here’s what you’ll need to get started.

Keep reading

It seemed just your luck to have rented an apartment directly above a group of cultists.  

You’ve lost count of hearing their inane, rhythmic chanting below your floorboards and the faint flicker of candles around an elaborate chalk circle. You’ve complained numerous times before, but every time they’ve greeted you at the doorway in their draping red hoods, solemn-faced and muttering about bringing the ‘Great Old Ones’ back.  

For all the macabre airs that surrounded the place, the rent was cheap. Impossibly cheap. At first, you had been elated by such a turn of luck after you’d been so suddenly thrust into the adult world with both a job and school to juggle, but by now you knew why tenancy changed so quickly. But there was no way you’d be able to find another apartment this cheap. So you just tried to ignore the strangeness that lingered around you by immersing yourself in the real world outside your door, silently dreading the moments where you would have to return home.  Any other person would have turned heels long ago, but you’re just too stubborn to leave. It’s your home. You feel a sense of protective belonging over it, almost as if it’s your responsibility. 

You’ve come to expect the unusual from your living circumstances.  

     However, what you would have never expected would be a loud, unearthly rumbling that would send you sprawling to the ground, where the muted screams of cultists to waver up through the cracks in the floorboards. 

After the initial shock, apathy and exasperation set in. 

Damn it. After so many failed rituals and chants, so many nights spent reading spells from mind-destroying ancient tomes, they’ve actually done it. 

Well, at least you won’t have to deal with your downstairs neighbors anymore, you remind yourself hopefully. 

The journey down the stairs is a dark, tepid one where you blindly grope the spiraling banister, feeling as if something is just going to jump out at you like a overused horror movie cliche. Even though you try and convince yourself otherwise- damn it, you’re an adult, you shouldn’t be afraid of these things- the fear till lingers. 

The first thing you notice is the immense heat that blasts onto your face, sending trails of condensation down your already pale brow. It’ unusual because their heat is turned off all the time, even in the depths of winter. The only heat source down there is candlelight for when they carry out their unearthly rituals. But now it feels like you’re in the boiler room of the apartment block, walls almost scalding to touch. 

A smeared chalk pentacle glimmers in the shivering light of a single candle in the center of the room, it’s siblings long since extinguished. Everything in the room is scattered and overturned, the wooden floorboards blackened, but curiously not burnt. It’s as if some massive, invisible explosion has take place. The musty air is already making you nervous- something lingers in it, something that you already have the sense to know is not of this earth, that every cell i your body screams to get out of. There’s no trace of your neighbors anywhere. But you can’t help but feel as if you’re not alone, as if something is watching you from the shadows.

Maturity tells you to call the police. But you’ve tried that in the past, and nothing has ever really come from it. And if you tried describing what was down here, you were sure that they would hang up on you as a prank call. 

There’s a patter of movement from behind you. Noticing something sharp glinting from across the floor, you scrabble down to grab it, to try and protect yourself.

There’s a low clicking growl from the darkness. You feel ready to pass out from fear at any moment. You grip the knife shakily in your hand, but somehow feel even more helpless. Even when shrouded in darkness, you know that you’re powerless against whatever faces you. 

      With a shrieking cackle, something massive launches itself from the darkness with flashing white eyes and a fanged mouth trailing viscous saliva. You wait for death, but find it curiously absent. You look down to see the thing feeding on something else, and yourself completely unharmed. 

It’s a massive mass of pulsating tentacles from the waist down, slithering across the floor on them like some giant demented octopus. Above, it’s a bony white mockery of the human form, scales trailing down it’s spiky spine. Seeing it’s arms flex as it tears into it’s meal, it’s a lot more muscular than you thought. Around it’s head, you see a familiar robed hand, half-clutching a hammer. A hand that belonged to someone, one of the cultists, who was going to bring it down on you and use you as a human sacrifice. 

With a dawning shock, you realize that whatever this thing is, it just saved you. 

You move hesitantly towards it and it’s head whips around, glowing eyes burning right into your rigid form. It looks at you in a way you’ve never seen anyone look at you before, so intently, so longingly. It softens you to sympathy towards it, instead of screaming at the sight of it. 

“Thank you,” you breathe out.

You cringe at how ridiculous you must sound. You don’t even know if it can understand what you’re even saying, or if you’re really just the light snack for it after the heavy dinner of loyal cultists. Much to your surprise, it understands. A low longing growl coils out from it’s throat. It’s not even human, but you somehow feel closer to it than you’ve ever felt to any fellow member of your species. There’s more than that. You see it in it’s whole stance, aching familiar- it’s lonely.

Lonely- just like you. 

Overwhelmed by the situation, you make a quick run for upstairs. But as you’re midway up the staircase, you hear a low squelching sound. Whatever it is, it’s not about to leave you. 

     That evening was how you found yourself saddled with an unusual new roommate. He didn’t have an exact name, well at least not in human language. The most you had gotten out of him was a high-pitched series of clicks and ear-splitting squeals. 

Despite all odds, you two had somehow become amicable. True, he practically ate you out of house and home, but he was always there to listen to your day and silently comfort you from your stresses, wrapping his tentacles around you in a slimy hug. 

There were the few annoyances- while most roommates had to deal with their stuff being borrowed without permission, or not doing chores, you had to stop yours from eating neighborhood cats. 

It was nice having someone to come home to- even if that someone was actually something that was from another dimension all together. It was still nice.

Still, the memory of that night played on your mind- why had he saved you from becoming a sacrifice? Why hadn’t he just devoured you like he had with everyone else?

You sat half-curled up on the couch, a stack of junk food seated in your lap, more for him than it is for you. Beside you was your laptop. If there was anything that you loved about the new routine, it was movie night. It was a night where you could just lose yourself and forget the stresses of the world. You were so used to watching movies alone, but now you had someone else to enjoy them with. 

And you had to admit,  it was oddly endearing to see a tentacled, eldritch beast enjoy watching animated children’s movies. He shifted beside you, clawed hands shifting against the fabric of the duvet you’d put over to protect the couch from further damage. He was enraptured by the screen, toothy mouthed stretched into a wide grin. He loved movie night just as much as you did, already devouring half the stack of snacks. But you don’t mind.

Somehow you didn’t focus on the movie like you thought you would. Your mind slipped away from the action onscreen, becoming more wistful. You kept thinking about that night, about the ritual gone wrong. 

“Hey,” you suddenly remarked, “I just realized something.” 

His head instantly whipped around from the bright illumination of the screen within the dimmed room. 

“Mrnnnh?” came his curious growl. 

You suppressed a laugh at how truly catlike this hideous, tentacled monstrosity could be. 

“Two months since we met, and we moved in. I think it calls for some kind of celebration.” 

You paused. 

“I’ve…I’ve just been thinking…” 

He leaned in, both curious and concerned, sensing your obvious hesitancy. You force yourself to exhale. 

“That night…what was it about me? Everyone else…you devoured. But you left me alive. You saved me. Why? Why me?” 

The creature goes quiet. You already feel as if you’ve made a terrible mistake and feel like gingerly trying to switch the topic of conversation. But he shifts over the couch, slightly creaking it with his own immense stature.

“I…wanted to devour…wanted to devour everyone…but…” he growls in a deep, grating tone. 

His head tilts downwards towards you, making you feel absolutely tiny in the shadow of his presence. 

“…I… don’t want to eat…you. You…not meat to me.” 

He pauses for a minute, as if struggling what to say. 

”You…mean..more…to me…than…just meat.” 

You’re so shocked by the brevity of his words that it only dawns on you a few minutes later that it’s the first time you’ve ever heard him speak human words.

Squeezing back the few tears that brim within the glassy corners of your eyes, you draw close to him, allowing yourself to be embraced by his long arms. His touch is almost crushing, you know if he really tried, he could rip you apart, but you feel nothing but comfort. 

“Thank you.” you murmured softly. 

Your monster smiles down at you, revealing an array of sharp teeth, arranged in a welcoming, loving smile.