Young David Bowie: *is a creative musician who influences music and encourages others to make art and be themselves*
*publicly calls out MTV for ignoring POC artist*
*waves his bisexuality so intensely that he’s one of the few celebrities that the media DOESN’T actually erase his sexuality*
*tells gender norms to piss off and supports trans individuals*
Old David Bowie: *dies after long, brutal battle with cancer*
Angry tumblr slacktivists: “You know he did drugs and some people say that some groupies who he slept with were underage and despite little to no evidence, that completely dismantles any good that he could have done ever, he was a terrible person.”
asdhlgdgakj i didnt even hit 1k yet im one away but who cares not me. SH00KITY SH00K THANK FOR THE FOLLOWS IDC THIS ISNT A GOOD TY NOTE BUT I JUST,,,,,,,,,, HOW. ILY EVERYONE AND YAYAYYYAYA. @ravenclw drunk viv makes a return
probs won award for the world’s most basic banner tbh and its a big milestone rip whateva im in a good mood for the first time in forever i wont dwell on it
Okay, this is gonna make people hate me, but I’m gonna say it anyway.
Okay, so, Supercorp. I get it. I really do. They are both stong beautiful women and would be great together. But, I don’t think it will become cannon. And I get it, i have non cannon ships who i legit ship more than the cannon ships (Alex x Sam vs Alex x Maggie). And you are free to ship whoever the hell you want! But, like Caity lotz and Chyler leigh said in their livestream, it is not the actors fault if sometimes the writers make decisions that you don’t like. So hating on actors/actresses because of something they have no control of (the character’s choices, love interest, etc), isn’t okay. I get if you guys don’t like Chris, he can be a dick at sometimes (so can you and I and literally anyone). But, everyone who has a camera on them all the time is going to eventually say something stupid and it’s gonna blow up. We do that, but we don’t have a camera on us so it’s not noticed by the entire freaking world. We all have flaws. Even celebrities. Also, remember, just because your followers/people you follow are hating, you don’t have to join in. And this goes to the Karamels too. I have seen you hate on Katie McGrath, and that’s stupid! She hasn’t done anything, she even said that Mon-el was the love of (Kara’s) life. I see hate everywhere, and I’m putting my foot down! Be brave and stand out. Call out the haters. Choose love.
1. Root’s vision of the universe (Root Path, 3x17)
If someone asked me to show them one scene that perfectly encompasses Root’s philosophy, they’d get this brilliantly written and amazingly acted scene shoved under their nose. It shows us how she sees the world – aimless, just a series of random occurrences and coincidences, no reason and no logic, and no meaning either. It also beautifully highlights how she views TM and why its presence and continued survival is so important to her. TM is the one thing that gives her purpose and direction. It brings meaning to an otherwise pointless existence. It gives her a reason to live.
2. Root as The Machine’s Analog Interface (Aletheia, 3x12)
This is one of my absolute fav scenes from the entire show because it’s a brilliant demonstration of one of Root’s primary roles on the show – that of TM’s analog interface. Root was already a part of TM a long time before ep 100. She was already its voice and its ears and its hands. This scene also showcases Root’s absolute devotion to TM and how far she’s willing to go for it. She’s willing to bear any amount of pain and torture, and she absolutely believes that it cares for her and will help her out of this situation eventually (and she’s proven right!). And finally, god bless Amy Acker’s goddamn acting during this scene!
3. Root being self-aware (Prophets, 4x05)
I adore moments like these because Root is so deliberately
flashy that it’s really easy to just classify her as the ‘perky psychopath’ and leave
it at that. But this moment right here shows that Root does understand the dangers associated
with being on the front lines as TM’s analog interface in an AI war with SAM.
She’s completely aware of what her future is likely to hold and she knows how
this is going to end, and she still goes ahead 100% with it anyway. Because she
sees TM as something completely worth sacrificing herself for. And because she
now also has people that she thinks are worth protecting at any cost. Root being introspective is a rare treat and this scene also stuck with me for the foreshadowing that it provides.
4. Root’s hatred of humanity (The Contingency, 2x01)
Root’s utter disdain for humanity is my absolute fav.
She doesn’t celebrate the flaws that people have as an inevitable part of being human. She just sees it as proof that humans are rotten to the core and should be exterminated. However, I love that Root isn’t just spewing random bullshit. She’s speaking from an evolutionary perspective. She thinks humans had evolved as far as we can and is enamored by the idea of artificial intelligence specifically because it’s perfect and rational by design and would fix everything wrong with humanity. Which makes it deliciously ironic that she winds up as the analog interface to an AI that celebrates humanity in all of its flawed glory and teaches Root to find something valuable in human life. And this brings us neatly to…
5. Root’s fierce love for her family (The Day The World Went Away, 5x10)
“I can’t lose you… you’re too important to me!”
“You can’t live with me, I can’t live without you.”
“This might be the first time I feel like I belong.”
Yes okay so I cheated a little with the quotes for a bit of context, but this gif highlights something that is very important to me and a concept that is immensely staggering – Root has no regrets. If you asked her, she would go back and do this all over again. No matter what struggles and pain she has endured, she wouldn’t change any of it, because she also gained something from it all. She found people who she loved and who cared for her in return. She found acceptance and belonging. She found herself a family that she would fight tooth and nail to keep. And that’s pretty priceless.
(x)(x)(x)(x)(x) and a special thank you to @isagrimorie for making that last gif from ep 100 for me. Honourable mentions go to: “We might as well be a symphony” (The Day The World Went Away, 5x10, reserved for Shoot moments), the Truth Speech (Liberty, 3x01), and the Hand Drilling (MIA, 4x13).
Everyone knows that flawed characters are the name of the game. Perfectly sweet princesses (or “princesses”) have been left behind, and now it’s all about the anti-hero, the whiny brat, the surly and unwilling participant, the raised-by-wolves social skills.
Alrighty then, bring it on! There are many arguments in favor of this character type. One of the most compelling (and most talked about in recent months) is that girls should not have to be ‘likeable’ in order to carry a story and that we should be able to celebrate female characters without holding them to archaic standards of being ‘nice.’ We should let girls be aggressive, cranky, and have their unfeminine moments without lambasting them as bad role models or rejecting their worth because of it.
…but maybe be careful how you go about making unpleasant characters. There is a fine line between having a realistic character with flaws and praising said flaws. A female character with a short temper may be just a well-rounded character; a female character with a short temper who does nothing else and encounters no consequences from it does not get to hide behind the banner of “but it’s a flaw.”
Side Characters: The most important thing to remember when making unlikable characters is that…they’re unlikeable. Your side characters should reflect this fact. They should react to the flaws of the character in a realistic manner. Whether they are frustrated at a character’s immaturity or they get angry right back at a rude snarker, your side characters are your best way of saying to the audience “this is a problem.” Flaws are considered flaws because they cause problems, so without those problems, you’re just writing biting one-liners, not real flaws.
x | During the visuals for “Sandcastles,” a frank and heartfelt ballad that features a cameo by her husband, Jay Z, Beyoncé plays the piano while sitting on the floor in a home with minimalist decor. The camera pans to one object, a bowl sitting on the counter. The piece is Kintsukuroi, the Japanese art of repaired pottery. Broken objects are pieced back together with lacquer, typically in gold, silver, or platinum. The philosophy behind the technique is to celebrate the flawed or imperfect, rather than disguise it, and that the piece becomes more beautiful for having been broken.
Given the sentimental undertone of the song’s lyrics — Beyoncé sings “We built sandcastles that washed away” and “Show me your scars and I won’t walk away” — and as they are purported to be about a rough patch in her own marriage, it makes sense why Beyoncé would include the symbolic piece in the video as a possible metaphor for her relationship.
Adore her. Value her. Make her feel wanted.
Remind her that she can do it on her own but let
her know she’ll never have to.
Be her confidant, her biggest fan, her best friend.
Be her right hand, her shoulder to cry on and
everything in between.
Listen to her. Don’t just hear her, make the conscious effort
to listen to her. Absorb her words.
Compliment her intelligence and do it often.
Give without expecting anything in return.
Remind her of who she is when this world does everything
it can to make her forget.
Let her hurt for as long as she needs to and let her heal in
her own time, in whatever way is best for her.
Expect that at some point she will get knocked down,
be prepared to pick her up.
Trust her enough to handle her own problems,
only offer a solution if she asks for it.
Admit when you’re wrong. Don’t just say “sorry,”
say “I’m sorry,” and mean it.
Never respond to “I love you” with “me too.”
Tell her “I love you,” do it often and never stop.
Give her space when she needs to be alone.
Respect her boundaries.
Never use her insecurities against her, especially in the
middle of an argument.
Sometimes she won’t want to be touched, respect that,
find other ways to take care of her.
Never assume you’re entitled to her body, time or affection.
Appreciate every little thing you receive because it’s a gift.
Love her body at any size, weight, shape and age.
Love every single inch of her body and never forget that only she can determine her self-respect and worth.
Never tell her what she can/can’t wear, do or post.
Never try to control her. She controls every aspect of her life.
Don’t let people speak negatively about her. Don’t let her
enemies spread lies about her.
Let her know she has your time and attention, whenever, wherever.
Make her smile until her face hurts.
Make her laugh until she can’t catch her breath.
Make the effort to spend as much time with her as you can.
Be her one constant amongst the unpredictability.
Grow with her. Challenge her intellectually.
Revere her mind, cherish her heart, feed her soul,
appreciate her personality.
Never make her question how much you care about her.
Never make her feel bad for crying. Validate her feelings.
Give her your unwavering loyalty.
Give her your unconditional respect and love.
Care about every little thing that is important to her.
Believe in her goals, never let her forget that they’re
always within her reach.
Share in her passions.
Support her friends.
Suppress her fears. Encourage her dreams.
Starve her insecurities. Nurture her self-love.
Foster her ambition. Treasure her weirdness.
Embrace her independence. Celebrate her “flaws.”
Support who she wants to become. Be in awe of who she is.
Find a new reason to fall in love with her each day.
I grew up watching Mary Tyler Moore. Beginning with old reruns of the Dick Van Dyke show, which was ahead of its time in portraying marriage as a partnership between two people. Capri pants might seem so insignificant now, but they meant a lot back then. Next was the Mary Tyler Moore show, outspoken in its critique of sexism in the workplace, and as relevant today as it was in the ‘70s. Her comedic genius served to provoke, inspire, and empower.
But for me, her role as diabetes advocate was the most important. She spent years fighting type one diabetes, and also fighting the stigma, fighting for awareness, and fighting for a cure.
As a type 1 diabetic I grew up endlessly chastised by society and doctors for not better controlling my disease. I was constantly confronted with the misconceptions of a society that has no idea what type 1 is. I was made to feel guilt for an illness I did nothing to cause, and which could not have been prevented. I was made to feel shame every time I lost my balance on the tightrope that one must walk to control type 1. I learned to believe the lie that had been peddled me: that my inability to always perfectly control my diabetes was a moral failing, rather than a natural response to the burden of being on guard 24/7 fighting a terminal illness.
When I was a teenager I read an interview with MTM, in which she talked about her own struggles with diabetes: how she would binge on whole boxes of powdered doughnuts when trying to maintain strict control just became too much to bear. How she felt the burden of shame and guilt, and how she became determined to fight it. Suddenly this beautiful, glamorous, untouchable celebrity was just as flawed as me. And not only that, but flawed in the exact same way. If someone I saw as a paragon of talent, beauty, and strength struggled the same way I struggled, perhaps I wasn’t so weak after all. Perhaps I could make it too.
I think it needs to be more specific. Fandoms celebrate "relatable" flaws and feelings. Take Sasuke and Hinata as examples. Sasuke's a clusterfuck of flaws and feelings but he's vilified because people can't easily relate to how and why he has those issues. Meanwhile, Hinata's flaws are common and, more often than not, appealing to people. They're boring but relatable character flaws which, I think, are not usual present in past fictional works since creators focus more...
… on telling a good story than creating and satisfying the audience for the sake of money. Maybe that’s why it’s difficult to find good fiction stories nowadays in mainstream media. Most are pandering but those that do focus on creativity and storytelling shines best… Or maybe fans have poor capability of empathy/compassion that they need characters to be relatable first before it can move their emotions since being self centered is the trend nowadays. Sorry if I don’t makes sense.
I think people like to say they want characters to have flaws because that’s the conventional wisdom about character writing, but they actually don’t like it. People’s reaction to characters who’re flawed for real are usually negative. They want snowflakes, cinnamonrolls. They don’t like characters that rub people the wrong way, they don’t like characters who do morally questionable things. When they said “flaws”, they mean harmless stuff like “she’s not confident” “she feels weak”, traits that people can feel sympathetic for, not traits that’re problematic, and would bring about a downfall for the characters.
i feel like something unhealthy i used to do was look at my body like a project. i had a checklist of things that i wanted to do to finally be Acceptable and Correct in the body i inhabit and it was so harmful for me in the long run because it made existing day to day painful. how could i go through life like an unfinished drawing? how can you relate to people when you’re trapped in what they think of you as well as your own self perception?
in the end, what would ultimately make me feel better wasn’t the attainment of those “body goals” but the knowledge that my body doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to be my body. i don’t have to segment myself into good parts and bad parts, and i don’t have to loudly and passionately celebrate my perceived “flaws” in the name of body positivity. i’m glad others find solace in that sort of celebration, but for
i’m content to be content. :~)
my body can just be my body. it takes me places, it’s a part of me. it doesn’t have to be something i
and adore, but it doesn’t have to be something i hate either.
Characters: You x Chen (Jongdae) Genre: Romance, Angst, Slice of Life
Warning: This story includes themes about weight loss, eating disorders, self-hatred, and standards of beauty. Please read with caution.
I am thin now.
Probably still not thin enough for you.
But I take up less space.
I take up less of your air.
I can feel my bones protrude from my wrists and hips.
My ribs grinding against my flesh.
But still not thin enough.
Because of my thighs.
No, because of my stomach.
No, my arms.
My arms too.
Too much flesh.
Not thin enough…
The familiar sigh seeps from my lips, washes across my porcelain cheeks, and taps along my jawline as if playing an instrumental along keys, until they reach my ears. So familiar, for those words, that sigh, that lingering feeling of resentment repeats itself like a broken record everyday. Because it is never enough. I am never enough.
We set goals, we look at girls around us and set them as our targets. If I get to look like her, God, if you can make me as thin as her, as pretty as her, then that is enough. But it is never enough. We get to that point and want more because suddenly that twenty-four inch waist is still too fat. Because there is still flesh. There is still meat. The bones have not touched my skin yet. Suddenly, we begin to hate our own flesh and bones.
My petite hands grip onto my cheap $5 cheval wide mirror from Target that concaved in a specific way so that my height was never my real height and my width was never my real width; an illusion to make the short feel shorter, the wide to feel wider. Nails carve against the recycled paper that held the body against its frame. So fragile. With a forceful grunt, I haul the mirror up and flip it over so that I wouldn’t have to see my reflection that paled in comparison to the gorgeous slim figures of the girls in magazines. Instead, the inch wide crack, branching from the bottom right of the platinum glass, stomps against my chest and haunts my soul. So broken.
Head spins dizzily. Stars and gems and phosphenes flutter about. So addictive. Only now will I be able to see such enchantment. Such beauty. My legs swing helplessly to balance the unevenness of weight, yet ultimately succumbs to the tyrant of head over heart. Slam goes my body against the 25 year-old wooden bed my mother swore was good for me but in reality she didn’t want to spend money to buy a mattress for someone she says has enough fat to supply her own cushion. My minute feet knocks against my reflection. Both illusion and reality collapses against each other like twilight tides casting over ocean crystals. Shattered glasses meet with vulnerability of human flesh and skin. So…broken. But, will the excess fat go away now? Instead, what is left are more strokes and lines to add to my collection of scars and bruises.
They say if you can’t get over something, then accept it. So I learned to take pride in these discolorations and wounds. And illnesses. And deformities. And hurt. And struggles. And…and…
But the possessions most boast about, in actuality, are the ones causing us insecurity because the simple need for others’ acknowledgment and approval betrayed our inner motives and desire for solace.
So what can I do?
If even accepting and celebrating flaws suddenly becomes the weakness others attack you with?
But life goes on. And stomachs grumble. And the shattered glasses tinted in wine do not wash themselves.
Life goes on.
So don’t give up.
Even when no one supports you.
You have no choice.
My glossy vision lands on the single apple situated perfectly on its center axis. Perfect. Yet, no one wants an apple figure. No one wants a pear-shaped figure. Everyone wants the inedible hourglass. The one that turns time backwards so I could forget I inhaled that whole family pack of Cheetos or devoured five whole servings of Seoul-styled fried chicken.
Two fingers discover their daily position only reserved for my tonsils. Acid rides up my protesting stomach, up my burning esophagus, and out into the open world again. Not an apple for an apple. But an apple for a river. For a sea. For an ocean…
No. Dinner. For. A. Month. I make the promise that I knew I’d break but even if I break, I didn’t want to go down without the stars and gems and solar systems. A galaxy.
My gaze follows the path where the class jock clothed in shoulder pads and a helmet rushed forward. His Air Jordans bulldoze the field down with so much ease. Take more space. His shoulders bulk out, chest broaden as he slams his body violently against another football player. Crowds cheer as the familiar sigh evacuates from the pit of my stomach. It is only fair for a perfect guy to be paired up with a perfect girl…
And I am not…
So I’ll hide, not daring to show even the tips of my hair to the man who had stolen my heart so that I am only left with the heaviness of my head. Dainty feet trail against the mud once occupied by the athlete, retracing his steps as if they were magical spells or ancient artifacts worth a fortune.
Wind brushes my long hair against my white porcelain as my body closes its distance against Mother Earth but the arms that had pushed me off the cliff, quickly jotted forward, catching me securely around the waist.
“Haahaha!” the familiar harmonious laughter of Kim Jongdae flows through one ear and out the other.
I snap my neck back and throw him a death glare for his prank that had left my heart flying fleetingly back from God knows where my crush is, back into the center of my chest. His rising cheekbones and kitten smile greet me with so much passion and genuine euphoria that I couldn’t bear to stay mad. But even as the heart softens, the head tells me to at least throw a few punches and kicks for revenge. His sniggers continue to wrap my feeble frame with warmth and consolation.
“How is my favorite dongsaengie, today?” Jongdae rounds his arms around to support my back before pinching my cheeks playfully outward as if I am made of Play-Doh. I swat his hand away and gift him a tantrum pout.
“Hmm…my dongsaengie has lost all her baby fat. She used to have the most adorable chubby cheeks,” the young man teases. His eyes hood, brows cave, and lower lips protrude forward. Lights flicker in my eyes as an internal battle instigates. Sparks ignite in happiness at the confirmation that there were some type of progress in my diet but they were soon dispelled by the rush of acid that left me covering my own efforts out of embarrassment. Because…it was embarrassing. So shameful to be struggling when all my pretty friends ate all the food in the world and still were half my size.
Arms envelope around my figure as I unconsciously begin to build a shell to hide from the guilt…Guilt of what?
Of not being enough.
“Come on, let’s go clean the music room,” Jongdae halts my toxic thoughts with the kneading of my shoulders, easing the muscles, tensed and dormant for too long. With another pat, he nudges me ahead to the North Campus and further and further away from the soil that held my footprints, so light and barely visible to the naked eye.
Sheets of black lines and notes, on white, flow wistfully down in circles as Jongdae pushes the metal doors open to reveal the untidy orchestra hall. One lands perfectly at the center of my feet. Naturally, I bend over to pick it up, only to be intercepted by the grasps of my mischievous sunbae. Grinning cheesily, he scans the notes, humming every tune and beat to perfection. A music genius.
“Hey, didn’t you perform this piece at a recital before?” he questions, beaming happily in my direction.
I rub my neck, wondering how in the world he still remembered something from five years ago. Even I had tossed the memory down into a ditch. With a quick nod, I begin to work my way around the room, picking up this, picking up that, pushing stands aside, and loading chairs up into a neat stack. Jongdae hastily dashes over to catch a chair before it smashed my dainty frame into dust.
“Be careful, okay?” he warns with his tone still chirpy, but less so that it held an ounce of worry.
Already overcome with half shot of embarrassment and twice guilt, I quickly nod and scurry off to collect the instruments into their rightful compartments. The handsome upperclassman trails along, whistling to a song I knew but couldn’t quite name.
“Pabo-yah, a viola is a string instrument, not a wind,” he picks up the miscategorized instrument and tussles my hair. His vision briefly stalls along my pale chapped lips before he excuses himself. He returns with a warm cup of water. No. Even water is weight… But, out of courtesy, I take a short sip.
As I stand up to haul the large contrabass back into the storage room, stars and crystals line up in zigzags, floating aimlessly before my two eyes. The weight of barrels and sandstorms rock against my chest as the wind knocks right out of me. My name rolls panic-strickenly out of Jongdae’s lips as he races against distance and time to catch me securely against his strong arms.
“Hey,” he breathes, shaking my feeble form, “Don’t scare me,” the smoothness of his brows dive into knots as he calls over and over again for my response.
Whimpering, I claw my nails into his arms, willing for the dizziness to both take me whole and pardon me with a bit of mercy. Because it hurt. So, so much. Crystal dewdrops fill the center of my irises and needlessly escape from the meshed up corners of skin and bones. From the reflection of the sleek white grand piano, I spot the haunting corpse of my skin, the decrepit twitch of my malnourished muscles, and the fragileness of my dying heart. Blue porcelain. But I was pretty, I thought. I was at least prettier than that overweight girl I used to be.
“Hey! Hey! Don’t give out on me!” the distraught young man wheezes as he cradles me and sacrifices his own warmth to melt my icy skin. Another minute passes of nonresponse, and he’s up at his feet, rushing with me down the narrow halls of the school campus.
“Sunbae,” I weakly call out as he stops in front of a vending machine, literally punches buttons, and retrieves a snack.
Setting me carefully onto a bench, he kneels down in front of me and offers me the neatly packed granola bar. My stomach begs for its love but my head shakes, only increasing my vertigo by inches and miles. I slump back against the wall.
“Please,” his flawless, angelic voice begs as he tears the wrapper and holds the snack up to my lips. I could taste the sweetness of raisins and jam but the counter-reaction of salt and bitterness sends acid rushing up my stomach. Again, I shake my head. Tears stream uncontrollably down my eyes as blotches fade in color. Exasperated, Jongdae rips small pieces of the bar, pushes it into my clamped lips, and orders for me to chew but I shake my head over and over again.
“Okay,” he finally gives in. In seconds, my weightless body is lifted back into the warmth of his arms. “I’m bringing you to the hospital,” he concludes. I wheeze and summon my remaining ounce of energy to thrash around, only, my feet shuffles a mere two inches. Hospital fees. Documents. Worse of all, notifying parents.
“Sunbae-nim…” I uncontrollably bawl into his chest. At the sound of my sobs, his heart clutches in utter torment.
“Eat,” he pleads. This time, I obediently begin to nibble on the grain and sugar. The powerful aroma of cinnamon, along my bland tastebuds, causes me to succumb in a fit of hacking coughs. My guardian angel pushes me closer into his chest and strokes my back with such tender, love, and care I had never imagined attainable in my life. Fearing it to be just another one of my illusions, I cautiously glance up to dispel my own dreams. Jongdae sniffles, masking away his worry as to not guilt-trip me.
As calories, proteins, vitamins, and minerals soak into my cells for the first time in a long time, the blueness of my skin gives way to a pale white. Blotches sharpen into imperfect blurs and oxygen reenters my bloodstream. But Jongdae’s caress remains just as tight.
“Sunbae-nim, I’m fine now,” I inform but he shakes his head. The veins along his neck protrude out as he presses me even closer. He’s warm and cozy and everything I had ever wanted but I am disgusting and unworthy. Biting my trembling lips, I tug on his sleeves and call for his attention again. Finally, he slowly releases and places me back down against the bench. He takes a seat down on the floor, directly in front of me.
“When was the last time you ate?” he tosses the first of many questions.
I lower my head. I don’t even remember… My lips quiver.
“How much did you eat? What did you eat?” Jongdae strains his vocal chords as the sourness of his heart sabotages his God-given voice.
My head bows further down as the interrogation progresses. Such a disappointment. Such a shame. It’s the same conversation I desperately vowed to avoid. That reminder that I was still not enough. Because standards were that one had to be effortlessly and naturally thin. That trying was shameful but being fat was too. No way out. No way to please this society. Droplets trickle from my glassy orbs, creating a dotted trail along my thighs.
Jongdae clutches his fists and sighs.
“Why are you doing this to yourself?” his voice carries the pain of a wounded heart.
My lower lip bruises in purples and blue from my excessive gnawing. Even Jongdae sunbae-nim is disappointed in me…
He slips his hand through my boney ones and nudges me to look him in the eyes. “From now on, I will be booking your breakfast, lunch, and dinner.” Automatically, my mind protests but the vocalist denies me the right. “Then, afterward, we can go to the gym,” he sternly adds. Despite my will to keep my sobs in check, I let out a soft rasp.
Jongdae squeezes my hand and forces on his signature kitten grin. “Oppa knows a few things about exercising. How else do you think I have these?” Wiggling his brows, he flexes his biceps, earning him a quiet giggle that manages to escape from my lips. He tussles my hair and tugs my hand. “Now let’s fill up that deflated tummy of yours. You poor thing, your owner has been abusing you,” he says in a baby voice and pokes my belly button.
So many choices. So many food. The smell of toast, burgers, fries, grilled cheese, honey cinnamon rolls, and pure grease creeps into my nostrils. Adrenaline races through my bloodstream like released lions in a rabbit forest. Naturally, my tongue glides along, moistening my dry lips.
“What do you want to eat?” the handsome sweetheart asks.
My eyes study the endless options but halts at the single last row on the overheard menu that read “Calories”. I gulp and automatically scan for the lowest number as if I had been given the option to how much student debt I would owe the darn government after four years of college.
“Salad…” I mumble. Jongdae throws me a pointed look, squeezes my hand, and tugs me forward to order.
“Two turkey sandwiches with lettuce, mushrooms, Swiss cheese, ranch, onions, and sweet bell peppers please,” he orders. My heart pulsates as my brain calculates the numbers and amount of fat. Could feed me for a week.
The lady behind the counter hands Jongdae the tray with two plates of sandwiches neatly displayed like that of five-star hotels. My tastebuds begin to salivate. Just one bite. I must have stared at the sandwiches with eyes of hunger and desire, for Jongdae fans his hand to further temp my appetite.
But the number 99 strikes in my head. Under a hundred. Then, I will be pretty.
“No,” I push the tray away from me.
Jongdae’s face falls. “Stop counting calories,” he sternly orders and pushes the tray back toward me. “And we aren’t leaving until you finish the entire sandwich.”
My head whips up in disbelief.
“Every. Last. Bite,” he emphasizes as he starts to chomp down on his own.
The fresh smell of pure goodness swirls from his lips over to mine. Swallowing my saliva, I meticulously pick the bread up with my thumb and index finger. Flour soaks into the crevices of my tastebud. Immediately, they perk alive, swooshing about at the contact of substance and energy. Ahh. Food. The taste of food. I inhale the sandwich like a starving beast. My fingers coat in saliva as I lick the very last crumbs and sauce. In front of me, Jongdae sports the most handsome grin of satisfaction I had ever seen in my life. Instantly, my cheeks heat in tickle-me-pink for the first time in a long time.
“After lunch, we rest a bit, take a relaxing walk along the park, feed some birds, and then Oppa will teach you how to lose weight the healthy way,” the sweetness of his voice surpasses the honey sauce along the tips of my tongue.
Weeks passed, then months. During the weekdays, the residential choir singer allowed me to tag along to the gym. On weekends, we hiked up the hills and ran down bumpy roads.
“Ah!” I squeal as I stumble on a random hump on the road. Beside me, the briskly jogging Jongdae skids to a halt and backtracks to check up on me.
“Be careful,” he cautions as he kneels down and examines for any scraps.
“I’m fine,” I reassure. My personal trainer nods, summons the muscles in his quads, and stands back up. The twinkle of his flawless smile reflects the warm colors of my face. Unable to control the flutter of my vulnerable heart, I reflexively turn around and run off.
“Hey! Wait for Oppa!” he chuckles as he chases after me.
Why are you so good to me?
Everything seemed perfect. Except, the number on the scale. Five pounds. I had gained a total of five pounds in under a month. I stare critically at my silhouette on the wide mirror, targeting every flab or excessive meat. On my thighs. On my stomach. Under my arms. Everywhere. Everywhere! My shoulders slump over in defeat. Unable to handle my own flesh, I slip my shirt back on and lumber out of the locker room.
“Hmm?” Jongdae questions and nudges me slightly. “Something wrong?”
Quickly, I shake my head but the half ripple of my lower lips betrays my utmost insecurity.
“No, something’s wrong,” he concludes, slides his hand through mine, and walks with me to a quiet corner. “What’s wrong?” Jongdae’s hand softly brushes my cheek, causing butterflies to flap their wings freely in my chest.
Again, I stubbornly shake my head.
“Hm…let’s go grab dinner then. Oppa knows a place that sells delicious fried chicken. Once in a while, we can have a guilt-free meal!” he chirps but my stomach drops.
Seoul styled fried chicken. 520 calories. Eat enough and gain a pound.
Forcing on a wide smile, I brush it off and shake my head again. But the moment I catch those gentle, wavering, and worried eyes of his, my heart drops. And with it, my façade.
“Did you go on the scale again?” he deduces.
I look away to hide my guilt. However, instead of raging for going against his instructions to pay no heed to numbers, he simply tugs on my arm for my attention.
“Don’t. I repeat, don’t look at the scale anymore,” he starts and instantly my body begins to retreat but he grips onto my hands tightly.
“Look at me,” he instructs, “Look into my eyes.”
Ashamed and weary, I bring my eyes to meet his flawless ones. They glitter with diamonds and crystal gemstones. So beautiful.
“See yourself through my eyes,” he persists with the intense gaze, “Mirrors lie. Scales are but manmade numbers. But my eyes tell the truth,” he continues as I study my own reflection in his perfectly sparkling orbs, for the first time ever.
“It’s so sad, how we are never able to see our true beauty – when we laugh, our trustiest smile. That is why I am here to tell you; to show you,” Jongdae cups his hand around my small face and states with pure geniality in his faultless voice.
My body quakes as my heart threatens to drown in emotions.
He takes my hand and sweetly brings it up to his lips. “In my eyes, you are beautiful, not because of a number on a scale or the measurement of your waist, but because of this,” he points to the center of my chest. Tears stain my cheeks and runs down Jongdae’s hands. “This girl who always puts others before herself. Who secretly cries to herself so that others don’t worry. The girl who feeds stray cats without boasting to anyone for credit. The girl who listens to others’ pain and piles others’ burdens onto her weak shoulders even when they are about to snap. The girl who picks up other people’s trash instead of tattle-telling on them. I love that girl.”
I burst into tears as Jongdae envelopes me within the warmth of his chest.
“I loved you for a while now,” he pauses, “but I knew you only had eyes for the class jock,” he admits as I supplied his chest with an abundance of tears. “I wanted you to be happy, even if it was with someone else, but seeing you forcefully diet and torture yourself for him makes me lose my mind!” Jongdae voice lines with a pang of hurt. “Maybe I can never replace him in your heart but please, please don’t hurt yourself anymore. Because I’ll hurt,” he finishes and slightly loosens his hold around me so that I could take a quiet gander at the beautiful woman in his eyes.
She was not only pretty in the dulcet coral of her cheeks, the honesty of her eyes, swiftness of her soft brows, but she possessed a heart of gold. A true beauty.
“Oppa…” I burst into tears again. Smiling until his crescent mooneyes only created a shining halo around my reflection, he leans in and gifts me a light innocent peck on the corner my trembling lips.
My heart skips a beat and I finally realize, with him, I never needed to be someone, who I was not.
Forehead against forehead, he brushes his nose teasingly against mine. From the close distance, I could see every sparkle, every tint, and hue, and utter beauty of the lucky girl before him. For beauty truly lied in the eyes of the beholder. And well, for me, it also lied in the eyes of Kim Jongdae. Naturally, my neck inclines forward for another kiss as his laughter colors my world with undying affection.
For a heart of gold beats the fragileness of a blue and white porcelain.
a/n: AYOoo! I’m back for another update! YAY THREE IN A ROW ~dances in joy~. This was a scenario I started, perhaps, back in May or June but couldn’t finish until last night. I’m not going to lie, no matter how many times I read this, I still cry a little because this one really hits home (not that my other stories don’t). Recently, I also realized that this problem resonates with many girls. Even the ones I thought were confident about their bodies because, in my eyes, they were so, so damn gorgeous. But they don’t see that. It’s a problem. A real big problem. I am a fully grown woman, and I still struggle so, so much. That is a big issue and it hurts a lot to know that most of us forget the true beauty within us because we tend to focus way too much on the distorted image we see in the mirror.
Hope you guys enjoyed!
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Why is no one talking about how amazing Lorde is? Celebrities always complain about how they are edited and photoshopped, but never do anything about it. Here lorde openly and obviously points out what is being done. She is showing people that flaws are beautiful and apart of being human. That you shouldn’t be ashamed that you don’t have glowing perfect skin because no one does. This women is an incredible role model and a beautiful person.