cinched tight

So this is a totally useless rant, but as a skinny girl, I’m getting extra, extra tired of fat-shaming.

I work for a corsetier at a Renaissance Faire. We sell corsets. Not flimsy bullshit costume corsets; like real, durable, waist-training corsets. Today a woman came in with her boyfriend, so I helped her pick out a corset and try it on. While her boyfriend—who was decidedly enthused about the whole corset thing—sat watching me lace her in, he told me, grinning, “Of all the good jobs at the Renaissance Faire, I think you have the best.”

I shrugged in agreement. “I touch butts and reach down cleavage all day; I mean…” Because we like to be a bit rakish at the Faire, and, y’know, it’s true. Tying people into corsets pretty much invariably requires getting handsy.

The couple laughed at that, and the boyfriend said, “That’s the job I would want!” But then he chuckled again and said, offhand, “Or maybe not; while we were looking at the racks, there were some pretty big sizes on there!”

Our sizes are all done in inches, and the biggest we make is a 46. And you’d better believe our large sizes sell. For a second I wasn’t sure what to say to the guy’s comment, but I answered him casually. “We get a lot of beautiful big ladies in here.” Because we do. “We make corsets for real women, not Barbie dolls,” I added. Wasn’t trying to be smart, just kind of tossed it out there because that’s the line we like to use when people ask about larger sizes, and because, again, we do.

The boyfriend went quiet at that; I didn’t think anything of it, I just kept on lacing. A moment later, he said, a little awkwardly (but sincerely enough), “Didn’t mean to be offensive.”

I quickly smiled and brushed it off, said he wasn’t, said I was just saying. (Don’t want to make the customers uncomfortable, you know?) And that was the end of it. His comment had rubbed me the wrong way, but it wasn’t a big deal. Now, I wear a 20-inch corset. I’m a few cup sizes short of being one of the Barbie dolls. Like his girlfriend, I’m one of the “hot chicks”; he doesn’t have to worry about offending me by implying that I wouldn’t be fun to poke and pull at.

Honestly though, of all the people I fit sexy technically-undergarments to in a day, fat girls are maybe my favorite people to lace up. Because they are just so damn happy that we have stuff that fits them. They are so damn happy that the corsets we make in their sizes are all the same pretty, shiny colors and cool flower/dragon/skull/etc. prints that the smaller corsets are, not ugly beige and boring “granny” colors. They are so goddamn happy that at least one (of several on the grounds) corset shop carries things that they can wear, that they actually want to wear, and that they look fucking awesome in. This is only my second season working, and we’ve fit 60+ inch waists and double-K busts. The only people we’ve ever had to tell sorry, we don’t have anything that fits them, are twelve-year-old kids.

It’s half-wonderful, half-heartbreaking how excited those women get. Women who say with sad smiles, when we ask if they want to get fitted, “Oh, no, you don’t have anything that fits me,” and then are stunned when we’re 300% confident that yes we do, and we have options. Women who can’t stop smiling and looking at themselves in the mirror after we’ve got them laced in.

I had a lady last week whose waist I measured (cinching the tape tight, as per procedure) at 41 inches—honestly not all that big. So she picked out a 41-inch corset to try on. I could tell halfway through getting her laced that it was going to be a bit big for her, so I mentioned it and said she might do better to try a smaller size. She started crying on the spot. She was so overwhelmed; she couldn’t believe someone had just told her that a 41 was too big. She told me about how hard clothes shopping was for her, how her mother would tell her she needed an XXXL instead of an XXL, how she had recently lost weight but still couldn’t wear certain colors because they didn’t fit or she wasn’t confident enough.

She did end up getting her corset, and after I checked her out she asked if she could give me a hug, so we ended up standing there hugging each other for a minute. While we did, I told her, “Do not ever let anyone tell you any bullshit. You are gorgeous.” She said, “I have a new boyfriend and he keeps telling me that.” I told her he was right, and to just keep telling herself she’s gorgeous; it was okay if she didn’t always believe it, but to keep telling herself anyway. (That’s how I talked myself through shit when I had bad anxiety.)

We all know fat-shaming is bad. The stupidity, fatphobia, and misogyny of it has pissed me off since I first became aware of it. But working with clothing, especially as figure-hugging and precise as corsets, has given me a new perspective on it—how much it affects people and just how shitty it is. Like, what does it say that I had a grown, only average-big woman crying into my shoulder because she was so overjoyed not to be the uppermost extremity of what a manufacturer can clothe?

My job rocks and it’s really rewarding, but sometimes it highlights some of the ugliest shit about society. I’m so glad I work at a shop that’s not bullshit about body types and operates with more people in mind than just scrawny white chicks like me. The fat women I work with are a ton of fun to lace up, and they’re so much more than their size—they’re cool, they’re smart, they’re funny, they’re sweet, they’re great to talk to, and yes, they’re hot. I’m so damn done with them getting short-changed and shamed by petty fucks who refuse to make them nice clothes, who refuse to even try to work for them, who refuse to consider them pretty. This whole rant was useless and won’t get read, but I had to vent because it’s been driving me nuts.

So actually, screw you, random dude. Fat girls are the highlight of my job.

Sick Day

This is for @rowanismybae who is super sick and I can’t take care of her from so far away so this is the best I can do. Hope you feel better soon Milly!

Rowaelin - super fluff

Of course. The day of the ball - the huge party for Lysandra’s birthday that Aelin has been planning for months - of course she had to wake up sick. Rowan had told her. He had tried warning her that the stress of the planning and the countless hours of making invitations would lead to her body breaking down. Aelin had just been hoping it would happen after the celebration.

She knew it the moment she woke up, before she had even opened her eyes. Her throat stuck when she tried to swallow, and her chest tightened every time she took a breath. Queen Aelin is sick, but there is no way she is letting her King know. Today is not the day for ‘I told you so’s.

So, Aelin cracks open her tired and most likely bloodshot eyes, squinting against the harsh light coming in from the window. She stifles a groan as she sits up, her limbs feeling heavy. Standing on wobbly legs, Aelin attempts to walk towards the closet. Perhaps if she can get dressed and out of their chambers before Rowan wake up, he won’t find out about her dreadful state. Through sheer willpower and stubbornness, Aelin is sure she can make it through the day.

Sniffling the whole way, Aelin makes it to her closet, picking an outfit that will not cinch her already tight chest, or hinder her stumbling legs. Looking down at herself, Aelin sighs. It’s not the most queenly thing she could be wearing, but it’ll do until she needs to get ready for the party.

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anonymous asked:

Steve sees one of the Avengers falling and managed to catch them. You mind a reaction to each one or a likely few who find their position unexpected ( Tony annoyed by the bridal position and threatening Steve to put him down please!)?

“I swear to God, Rogers, if you don’t put me down I’m hiding your dentures!”

Steve couldn’t help the canary eating grin on his face as Tony’s muffled yelling became more insistent. “What was that, shell head?” he asked, cocking his head to the side. “I didn’t hear ya.” 

“Dammit, Rogers!” 

The expressionless face of the Iron Man suit stared up at him, entirely contradicting the pissed off man inside it. Tony had found out the hard way that naturally occurring lightning was nothing like Thor’s and was more likely to short-circuit the suit than give it a 400% power boost. He’d dropped like a lead weight and, much to his annoyance, right into Steve’s arms. The genius had been yelling ever since, the compromising position of the ‘bridal carry’ far too embarrassing to put up with. Of course, Steve couldn’t pass up the opportunity for revenge. 

“Put me down!” 

“What’s the magic word, Tony?” he pressed, not even bothering to hide the amusement in his voice. 


Steve pulled a face and shook his head. “No, that’s not it.” 


Steve will always equate the F.R.I.E.N.D.S. episode ‘The One with the Blackout’ to Natasha. It had started with a friendly game of paint ball and a weak tree limb. Steve had heard the branch snap just in time to avoid it, looking up to see what had caused it to break only for something to land on his back. Natasha, ever so graceful, clung to Steve’s back like a scared cat. The angle of the fall had caused one of her legs to hitch up on his shoulder while her other wrapped around his waist, cinched tight enough to keep her from the ground. Her arms, having been all but useless during her trip down, now gripped at his t-shirt to keep herself upright. In Steve’s defense most people would be startled by something like this and spent nearly a full minute trying to dislodge whatever it was before he heard her voice. 

“Jesus Christ, Rogers, stop!” Natasha snapped, struggling to regain the grip she had lost during his flailing. “It’s me!” 

Steve institutionally reached behind him to boost her up like one would with a piggyback ride, but only managed to get a rather firm grip on her ass. “Oh God, Tasha, I am so sorry,” he panicked, grabbing hold of her legs instead to keep her steady. 

“Uh-huh,” she muttered, slowly lowering her leg from around his waist to the ground. “How ‘bout this,” she started, swinging her other leg free, “I won’t talk about you grabbing my ass if you don’t talk about me falling out of a tree. I don’t need to give Barton any more ammunition.” 

“Sounds fantastic,” he sighed in relief. “Wanna double up and get Tony?” 

“Does Ross have a problematic understanding of what a healthy relationship is?” 

Steve cocked an eyebrow. “Yes?” 


Thor, Crown Prince of Asgard and God of Thunder, was terrified of swans. This fear had been forged during the one and only time Tony had tried teaching him golf, the god finding the white birds that flocked the course amusing and wanting to pet one. It ended with 12 stitches and a vow to never cross paths with the animals again. 

He had kept to his vow till a particular mission found them in Central Park. It had been a short fight, no longer than an hour, and the god was feeling a little bit disappointed. In an attempt to make himself feel better he begun retelling the stories of his youth, emphasizing on the parts that were especially daring and brave. 

Now, the Avengers loved Thor, it went against their nature not to, but there were only so many stories they could hear before wanting to strangle the man. Which was why none of them warned him of the swan waddling up behind him. 

He had been half way through the tale of how he and The Warriors Three defeated a Mountain Giant when he heard the dreaded sound. 


All 300 pounds of Thor threw itself at the closest thing, which happened to be Steve. 

Being one of the few who could actually lift the man, Steve was more amused than annoyed at having the god wrapped around him. “Thor, calm down, it’s just a-” 

“That vile creature has tasted my blood and wishes for more!” he snapped, adjusting his grip on the Super Soldier so his legs were wrapped tighter around his waist. “Someone vanquish it!” 

No one had the heart to tell him that it wasn’t the same swan. 

“Maybe it just wants to be friends?” Sam offered with a snicker, trying his hardest not to completely break down. 

“Nay, Son of Wil,” Thor denied, his eyes never leaving the swan. “It is vengeful and blood thirsty animal that will tear me limb from limb till I-” 

A butterfly had caused his sudden stop, the insect fluttering by just a few inches away from the swan. An almost childish glean had entered the bird’s eyes and with another honk waddled after the butterfly, its tail feathers ruffling as it went. 

“Yeeeeeeeah,” Clint dragged out. “Totally blood thirsty.” 

Thor’s cheeks flushed with his embarrassment and he detangled himself from Steve. “My apologies, friend Steve,” he muttered. “I lost myself for a moment.” 

“Happens to the best of us.” 

proudlyunicorn  asked:

9 karlenaaaaa

karlena, playing footsie

Kara doesn’t think she’s ever been arm candy before.

She says as much to Lena who laughs and leans across the back seat of the car, laying her hand lightly on Kara’s thigh.

“You aren’t arm candy, Kara,” she says. “I invited you because I need your intrepid reporting skills and quick wit to get me through this dinner.”

She flits her eyes from Kara’s face to her high-heeled feet, gaze lingering at the slope of her cleavage, at the lean flex of her calves, before smiling, coy and red-lipped. “It doesn’t hurt that you are an absolutely gorgeous date.”

Kara grins, tilting sideways in her seat, ducking her head to reach Lena across the suddenly vast distance of vinyl upholstery between them. She nuzzles into Lena’s neck, finding the floral perfume dabbed lightly at her jaw, mouths kisses along the hard line of Lena’s throat.

Lena eyes the partition that separates them from the driver before sighing softly, a light exhale falling from her parted lips. She tilts her head back, fingers tangling loosely in the hairs at the nape of Kara’s neck, careful not to muss the intricate braids that curl along the crown of Kara’s head.  

Kara, emboldened, nudges in harder, nipping teeth at Lena’s neck, one hand curling at her waist. Lena makes a small noise of surprise low in her throat, pulling back, fingers moving to splay at Kara’s jaw.

“No marks,” Lena says, tone controlled, even. But her eyes, dark-lashed and half-lidded, fix at Kara’s mouth. The quick tempo of her heartbeats, dampened by cloth and the distracting rush of city traffic, promise later, later, later.

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Dean x female hunter, reader insert

Warnings: SMUT/NSFW text (if you’re not 18, come back when you are!), mild canon typical violence, adult language

Word count: about 2,100

A/N: Hey y'all!! Sorry it’s been awhile, writer’s block has been killing me! But hey, here’s a little something I finally got around to posting! Hope you enjoy it, cause I spent way too much time trying to get it finished!

This was written for two challenges! The first is for Jenn’s Birthday Challenge! Happy birthday @avasmommy224!! Here’s your SMUT, my quote was, “We must all face the choice between what’s right and what’s easy.”

The other challenge is Katie’s 1K challenge!! Congrats on the followers milestone @casbabydontgoineedyou! My quote was, “Just let it be, we’ll figure it out later.”

Be sure you’re following these two amazing writers, they are totally worthy of your attention!!

Here’s my masterlist for more stories!



You were sure he’d be furious. You’d jumped in and now you were a bloody mess. If history had taught you anything, it was that Dean Winchester was going to be livid with you. You’d never hear the end of how reckless and dangerous your actions had been, even though you’d saved his ass. Fighting with each other, both of you spewing venomous words, at each other’s throats for hours, was the only way the two of you knew how to release your frustrations and break the always building tension in your friendship.

When Sam had yelled that he needed more time to find the artifact keeping the ancient vengeful spirit around, you dashed into the grand hallway of the mansion where the older brother was being tossed around like a rag doll. The ghost suddenly appeared above Dean, her white Victorian dress billowed around her as she plunged her hand into his chest and he screamed out in agony. Instinctually, you yanked the iron candleholder off the wall and swung it unceremoniously through the woman’s torso and she vanished momentarily.

“Hurry it up, Sammy!” you yelled over your shoulder, before you were violently throw by an unseen force into the wall. The impact was severe enough to shatter the large stained glass window above. You threw your arms up to cover your face and the shards showered down on you, nicking your exposed skin.

The malevolent spirit reappeared, rushing forward, her hands closing in around your throat. She slid you up the wall, fingers crushing your windpipe as your feet dangled inches above the ground. The sound of Dean screaming your name was starting to fade as the blackness began to creep in the edge of your vision. Just as you were about to lose consciousness the ghost erupted in a flash of sparks and flames before disappearing altogether. You came crashing back to the floor, gasping for air.

“Son of a bitch…” Dean was rushing to your side, kneeling haphazardly over the broken glass that surrounded you. “Dammit, Y/N, I thought I told you to stay with Sam…” he said, examining you.

“Yeah, and let you become ghost chow? You’re welcome…” your voice was hoarse, but still forceful. You knew he wasn’t a fan of bringing you along, the two of you spent almost as much time fighting each other as you did fighting evil, but frankly you didn’t give a rat’s ass what he thought. You’d been hunting long before you met the Winchesters and Dean’s shitty attitude wasn’t going to stop you now.

Rather than arguing with you, as you expected, he simply grabbed you by the hands and stood, pulling you up with him, “Come on, let’s go get you cleaned up.” His unusual calmness made you worry. Fighting is what you and Dean did best and you weren’t used to him conceding this easily.

Once on your feet, you winced painfully as a sharp pain pierced your left side. You lifted your shirt to find a large piece of glass embedded at least two inches deep into your skin right below your last rib.

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“When he tightened his fist, it caught. His arm was torn violently to the side, enough to nearly wrench it from his socket. Ritsu yelped,

But the noise Teruki made was worse.

It was something wet, rasping, forced from his lungs. The blur solidified. Teruki stood, his knees just a bit bent, his hands raised and digging at his neck, forcing their way beneath the tie cinched tight at his throat.”

Took some creative liberties from the fanfic A Breath of Trust by @phantomrose96!

You love me for the mask that I put on.
You love the cold, smooth porcelain perfectly melded into my skin. You love the flawless marble eyes, you can worship them like the smooth stone walls of the church.
You love the complexity of the web that I spin around you. You watch me weave them, every strand another trap and I’m cinching your skin tight with new pins to hold it all together.
I wonder why you never ask to escape. I wonder why you just stand there, in a trance, and the world around you turns more and more into a mesh of lies, darkening every inch of the reality you’ve ever known, until it starts suffocating the sunlight seeping through the edges.
I wonder why you let me in, in the first place. All I have are scissors for hands and I’m terrified of touching your wings.
You love this darkness. You love the way the shadows spill over you, bleeding into every inch of your skin.
I wonder when you’ll realise that I’m more cracked edges than porcelain. More clay than marble.
The mask is a facade to hide the monster that I am.
I’ve kept you in the darkness for so long, I wonder if you’ll ever love me when you see me in the light.
—  Tamarind Fall; Writing prompt: You love me for the mask that I put on but can you love the real me?
The Price 6/?

Summary: A visitor brings news of the goings on in Misthaven.

an: Recommended listening this chapter: Bishop Briggs - “Wild Horses”, Clairity - “Don’t Panic”, Woodkid - “Iron”

tagging @artielu, @jadeddiva, @kmomof4 @dreadpirateemma, @the-captains-ayebrows

Chapter List: One/Two/Three/Four/Five

Chapter Six

Her footsteps echo down the corridor as she leads him out of his rooms, winding their way through parts of the castle he’s explored before, past a grand ballroom and the library and the kitchens, until the scenery becomes less familiar, the uneven winding staircases leading him towards a destination he’s not quite sure of. It’s the middle of the bloody night, their only light the bobbing orbs along the hallways, glowing into life as they move along, snuffing out behind them the further they go.

She’s still in the clothes she’d worn to dinner, the jacket tight across her shoulders, her boots clattering against the stone floors, and he wonders, not for the first time, if the woman ever sleeps.

He’s surprised not to receive an immediate response to his silent query - whatever has happened, it has left her distracted enough not to pry into his thoughts, or at least too tired to answer his benign questions. There is a sense of relief in knowing that she isn’t constantly in his mind, and yet, he almost feels disappointed to get no response from her.

She is silent, and it gives him far too much room to mull over things, like the pinch of her face while she’d watched him tug his boots on, like the thrumming magic, not his own, filling the rooms and corridors like wildfire, consuming the air as they walked. Like the dream.

Already pieces of it were falling away, but he remembered just fine the call of the ocean behind him, and the desperate pull to find his brother. The taste of gunpowder is strong against his tongue, still, and the tang of blood sticks in his nostrils, but worst is the terror of not knowing whether the attacker had gotten to Liam.

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Spotted this hot DILF at a farm show.  Dam near cummed in my jeans!  Can we say 100% American beef!  Tight Cinch jeans, belt buckle,  and cowboy boots.  Dam love to spend a night in bed with him!


The Difference Between Tayuu/Oiran (Historical Edo era High-Class Courtesans) and Geisha (Historic and Modern Performing Artists/Entertainers):

Here, I will explain the aesthetic and cultural differences of the Geisha and the Tayuu/Oiran courtesan. Geisha work as entertainers in the modern world. Prostitution was made illegal in Japan in 1959, though Tayuu (known today, and ever since the decline of the Tayuu line in the 1700s, as Oiran) entertain today sans-sexual favors. 

**Please note: though historically, Oiran were working within the sex industry, neither modern Oiran nor Geisha have anything to do with said industry 


  • Make-up: While the white face and red lips are a feature of both courtesan and Geisha, their overall look is different. Oshiroi/Shironuri white powder is used, just like actors do in Kabuki theatre.
  • Dance and Music: Dance is one of the most important things a Geisha trains for. Her rigorous schedule is based around not only clients, parties and performances, but around her strict and traditional dance classes. Many Geisha attend dance classes until they are elderly and continue to perfect their skills, if they hadn’t retired! The shamisen, hand drum or flute are also some of the things Geisha learn, and Jikata Geisha (special Geisha who are trained in music and singing) provide music for a Geisha’s performance at parties (called Ozashiki)
  • Kimono and Obi Belt: The kimono worn by Geisha are very specific and are worn based on many factors, which include the status of the geisha (apprentice geisha (Maiko) have very different kimono from the older, professional geisha (Geiko) in that Maiko are by default more “child-like” and elaborate, with many bright colors and ornaments, while a Geiko wear more even-tones that are simpler but more womanly and elegant.) or are colored and designed by season and occasion. A Geisha’s kimono has about 5 layers of undergarments, tied to the Geisha to create the outer shape of the silk kimono. The obi belt is many meters long and is tied in the back, and takes the strength of another person just to tie it! Maiko wear their obi belts trailing behind them to accentuate their cuter, “youthful” appearance as it makes them appear smaller, while Geiko wear their obi belts tied into a tight, neat box. These kimono are tied together to allow a Geisha to dance and perform and are made to pair elegantly with each dance performance. If the belt were tied loosely in the front, as a courtesan Tayuu/Oiran’s is, then the geisha would be more limited in their dance and it would mask their subtle, minute movements. It is all a true work of art, and each kimono is unique to the Geisha (excepting the kimono used for some dance performances or ceremonies).
  • Hair Ornaments and Footwear: A Maiko wears many finely detailed hair ornaments–many are made of intricate silk designs. Each ornament is hand-crafted by Kyoto artisans and are very valuable; not only in terms of expense, but to the Maiko herself. Ornaments change with seasons, ceremony and rank-changing. A Geiko wears simpler ornaments like tortoise shell style combs and sometimes jade pins, though the ornaments are not limited to those designs. New Maiko wear six-inch high clogs called Okobo, though more experienced Maiko and professional Geiko can wear glossy leather Zori or Geta sandals, depending on the weather/preference.
  • Hair of Maiko and Geiko: The Maiko wear about six different hairstyles, made up of their own hair, within their time as an apprentice (these are–
  1. Wareshinobu–her first hairstyle
  2. Mishidashi–hairstyle for the ceremony of her debut
  3. Ofuku–”Coming of Age” hairstyle; becoming a more senior Maiko
  4. Shimada–used for dance recitals (and it used to be a traditional hairstyle for married women!)
  5. Katsuyama–Used for the annual Cherry Blossom Dances (Miyako Odori) in the month of April
  6. Sakkou–The hairstyle worn by a Maiko for her final two months before debuting as a professional Geiko/Geisha!

Geiko wear their natural hair underneath a wig, in a style referred to as Shimada

  • Geisha as Entertainers: Geisha are trained from their beginnings in the arts of Dance, Music, Tea Ceremony, and are well educated in the cultural arts. They are expert conversationalists; flattery and sake-pouring, along with lively and educated conversation are what Geisha bring to Ozashiki (the parties/events within the Ochaya teahouses). Contrary (extremely) to popular belief, Geisha are not and were never a part of prostitution or the sex industry. Ozashiki are a place for customers–who are not only men, but women or families, wealthy tourists, famous folk or groups of businessmen–to unwind and experience the traditional arts that Geisha have kept alive.

Tayuu/Oiran Courtesans:

  • Make-Up: The Oshiroi/Shironuri white make-up paired with red lips is used much like a Geisha’s. Red accents to eyes, eyebrows and cheeks are also used by both women.
  • Entertainment and Music: There are only about 5 active Oiran entertainers in the “flower town” district of the Kyoto Hanamachi. These women are trained in the traditional arts just as Geisha are–historically, Oiran were high-class Tayuu and were trained in music, flower-arrangment, calligraphy and social arts, but with the added aspect of sexual favors. These women were elite and had the power to personally reject a client. Today, Oiran, though few, exist as historic actresses and as entertainers very much like a Geisha. These women both keep Japan’s history alive.
  • Hairstyle and Hair Ornaments: The hairstyle of an Oiran courtesan is called Datehyougo–as you can see it is an extremely elaborate hairstyle much different than the styles Geiko and Maiko wear. This difference is important, as the Datehyougo hairstyle has perhaps little or even nothing to do with Geisha or their culture. The ornamentals of an Oiran’s hair are a plethora of combs and picks, arranged by rank/status of the courtesan. 
  • Kimono and Obi Belt: Much confusion surrounds the tying of the obi belt between Geisha and courtesans. It’s simple, really: Oiran had their intricately designed obi tied elegantly, though loosely, in the front of their kimono. This was so that clients receiving favor from the courtesan could undo the kimono. Geisha on the other hand, keep their kimono on, tie their obi in styles on the back and are cinched up tight around the Geisha to hold everything together. Their kimono have many more layers than the Geisha–all in an Edo-period fashion. The overall style promotes a more “loose” looking aesthetic, which was very erotic in it’s time. 
  • Footwear: While Okobo and some Geta can be very tall, the footwear of an Oiran can come in the form of 15 cm high, black lacquered Geta. During the Oiran Dochu (Oiran walking parade), an Oiran can be seen walking with her many attendants, swinging her tall Geta out to the side smoothly with each step. It is very beautiful to see!
  • “Attendants”: A big difference between the Oiran and the Geisha is that while Geisha have “younger sisters” whom they take under their wing as apprentices, Oiran have what are called child attendants. These children traditionally were apprentices who would attend to and shadow the courtesan, and who would later be initiated as courtesans as well. 

Thank you so much for reading! Hope you learned something! :)

- @crylie

What I love about each B.A.P member


  • Likes watching skateboarding videos on Instagram 
  • He follows so many skateboarding/architecture/travel accounts on Instagram 
  • He always looks so pure and good 
  • So soft
  • I think he’s just a baby angel sent here to spread happiness 
  • The way he blinks
  • His nose ring
  • Goes from adorable cute to damn boy in .0000001 second 
  • But mostly he’s in his adorable state
  • Constantly dancing 
  • His speaking voice 
  • His incredible rapping 
  • He comes up with a lot of their choreography 
  • Likes to put his hood on and cinch it tight lol 
  • It makes him look like a lil baby 
  • He’s just sooooooo cute
  • I want to squish him 
  • My son 
  • Very interested in fashion
  • His fashion has his own flavor 
  • Sometimes it can be a little questionable but he pulls it off well 
  • His random V lives in the dance studio
  • Apparently is a potato
  • Same
  • Mochiiiiiii
  • Bless him for creating an Instagram for Mochi 
  • Tol yet smol
  • His Pillow Talk solo…
  • We’re not gonna talk about that 
  • Quirky 
  • Dances as if there are no bones in his body 
  • He’s so flexible and wiggly 
  • Beautiful, pretty, handsome
  • His face is so unique and that’s what makes him soooooo pretty to me
  • His hair has been every color 
  • And each color looks great 
  • “Shutdown, sorry”
  • Loves skateboarding
  • Sock fairy 
  • King of Socks 
  • Took all the socks in the dorm when he moved out bc he thought they were his
  • Did he really believe ALL of those socks belonged to him????? 
  • Since the members showered by age, he was always last but would fall asleep before it was his turn
  • Use to slam doors and punch the recording room walls when he was angry 
  • He was so smol and young back then I don’t blame him, puberty is rough
  • But oh boy look at him now 
  • Was basically raised by the members 
  • Hugely influenced by Yongguk
  • Banglo 
  • I love their relationship with all my heart
  • He is the man he is today thanks largely in part to Yongguk 
  • When Bang was talking about him back at that concert in 2014 and precious bby couldn’t hold back his tears
  • This kid is amazing 
  • I still can’t believe he was 15 when he debuted 
  • Look how much he’s grown
  • Not just height wise 
  • He is very aware of the darker side of things 
  • But continues to be a shining beacon of sunlight 
  • No Title gives me chills every time I hear it 
  • He’s unbelievably talented 
  • Leave some talent for the rest of us
  • Jk take it all my amazing child 
  • He improves with every song 
  • Super cool dances to go along with his raps 
  • Constantly working to improve his performances
  • Never sits still
  • Always moving 
  • Doesn’t care about being weird 
  • Daehyun was so done with him during that one V app 
  • You know the one where Zelo threw Dae’s shoe 
  • And was making a bunch of funny faces at the camera 
  • And kept singing about wanting to go to Mexico and Brazil
  • Just another day in the life of Choi Junhong 
  • Destroyed his hyungs in the Vring U episode with the banana cushion 
  • That one time he pulled the string out of Daehyun’s hoodie during a game 
  • You cannot win against the maknae 
  • Extra af 
  • Loved and adored by BAP and BABYz alike
  • The members can’t get enough of him 
  • He is so loved TT^TT
  • I have so much admiration for him 
  • Pick whatever word you want to describe him
  • But there are not enough words in this world to describe how truly remarkable he is

Feel free to add some of your favorite Zelo things! Our golden child.

YG | HC | DH | YJ | JU | ZL

In The Hands of Evil


Because Ashi deserves better than an abusive mother and an unfeeling idol of Aku.

Warning: Contains spoilers for the first two episodes of Samurai Jack, Season 5.

Read it on AO3 here


First, they were many. Now, they are one.

Ashi returns to the temple where she was born, with a stolen sword and a heart full of grief. She doesn’t quite get the welcome that she wants- but she might finally get the chance she deserves.


Keep reading

Sleepsack Punishment

This account is true. The names have been omitted to protect the guilty.

The night before, I had made fun of a television program he was watching. This evening I was told I would be kept out of the way and punished by being laced up in the leather sleepsack instead of watching television. If I couldn’t say something nice, I wouldn’t get to watch TV at all! I was in the mood for a couple of hours of heavy bondage, so I went along with it. Little did I know how much the punishment would exceed the crime.

It was about 9:30 p.m. when we went down to the cell - a small storage room off the furnace room in the cellar. I’ve installed cushioned flooring and extended it partway up the concrete walls. The door is heavy wood planks, and there’s only one small window, up by the ceiling and glazed with frosted glass. I was wearing only tight leather chaps and a leather cockring. I took the sleepsack down from its hanger and laid it out on the floor. The sack is all leather, with a leather lining and an attached hood. I was also to wear a second hood inside the sleepsack’s hood to reinforce the sense of confinement. I sat down in the spread-out sleepsack and inserted my feet into the bottom of the bag.
First the leather hood with attached blindfold and gag was laced on. Then I lay back and slid my arms into the sack’s sleeves. The sack hood was pulled over my head and the face cover snapped down. My face was now just blank leather with only a couple of grommets for breathing. The sack collar was buckled snugly around my neck. The sleepsack was zipped up from my ankles to throat. Then he laced it, cinching the cords as tight as they would go and tying them off at several points up the front of the sack. As he laced it, he pulled on the cords hard enough to lift me part way off the floor, using my weight to tighten the cords. When he got to the section from my waist to my chin, he sort of bounced me against the floor to knock the air out of me. With each thump on the floor I gasped, and in the instant when my lungs were empty he’d tighten the laces down. After several fierce yanks to make sure there was no more slack to pull out, he tied off that section of cord. By the time he was done, I was a glossy black leather mummy.

Double-hooded and blindfolded, I couldn’t see when he turned off the light and could barely hear the light switch click and the door close. I was so turned on I knew I would cum if I moved at all. I wanted the experience to last. I just lay there perfectly motionless for a while until the orgasm urge subsided. The universe was nothing but darkness and leather completely enclosing me. All my worries, thoughts, stress and even my identity were let go. All that existed was the tight encapsulating leather and the leather cock gag invading my mouth. Eventually I squirmed a little to feel the tight leather rub against my naked skin. It felt so good that I struggled for quite a while gasping and moaning around the gag. The layers of leather creaked and sang together.

After a while I found myself lying still and resting. It took a while for me to catch my breath as the sack was so tight I could not take a full, deep breath. I had broken a light sweat, and the leather clung and sealed to my skin, holding me even tighter and more immobile. There was a pressure point around my head, and it was growing uncomfortable. I became frustrated and started really struggling against the sack; rolling back and forth and writhing violently, groaning and cursing around the black leather penis gag filling my mouth. Finally I tired and just lay there. I noticed the discomfort was gone, the hood must have shifted a little, but the damp leather was holding me tighter than ever. I couldn’t move my arms in the sleeves or even my fingers. That made me hard again. I alternated between lying there resting and humping against the smooth leather lining of the sack. The laces pulled the sack into folds over my cock. By squirming and thrusting I could work my hard cock into one of the folds. It was like being jacked off by a pair of soft leather gloves. I had to keep stopping so I wouldn’t cum. I wanted that sensation to last as long as possible.

Sometimes I thought I could hear through the part-way open window a car passing outside. I wondered how the people in the cars might react if they knew they were within a few yards of someone helplessly encased and imprisoned in leather. What if someone had heard my gagged groans and called the police to investigate? Could one of the cars be a police cruiser coming to the house? I might soon be discovered by a couple of cops in tall boots and leather jackets. Would they insist on letting me out, or would they just laugh at me and leave me to stew in the predicament I had gotten myself into? I moaned and writhed at the idea of the humiliation.

If I lay still, I could faintly hear a clock striking far above me, like it was in another world. I heard it strike once at one point. I had lost all track of time, and didn’t know if that was 12:30, 1:00 or 1:30. Finally I heard it strike 2:00 a.m. That started to freak me out. I wondered when I would be released, and if he had fallen asleep in front of the television. That thought set off a kind of fit of struggling in earnest. This was no longer a fantasy. I was tied up for real, and I was trying to get loose for real. I squirmed and kicked, flopping back and forth on the floor in fear and frustration, trying to fight my way out of the skin-tight black leather bag. I grunted and cursed around the leather cock that was jammed in my mouth like it was raping my face. I went crazy for a while, jerking and twisting violently and uncontrollably. The sweat stinging my eyes inside the hood brought me back to my senses. I knew escape was impossible. I stopped bucking and lay there for a while, catching my breath and resting, trying to calm down. I may have dozed a little, floating in the darkness of the cell.

After a while I heard the clock strike 3:00. That told me I was truly fucked. He had fallen asleep for sure. I had already been tightly tied up in the escape-proof black leather sleepsack for over five hours, and now there was no way of telling when I would get out. All I could was wait until he woke up and remembered where I was. I struggled more feebly on the padded floor, groaning around the cock gag. I squirmed reflexively. It still felt good, but I was beyond getting hard again. I lay back on the padded floor and tried to get as comfortable as I could. The night might only be half over as far as I was concerned. All I could do was wait and endure, encased and tightly laced up in leather. I was looking forward to a very long night.


carr-crashh-heartss  asked:

Ooh, such interesting prompts. But I'm intrigued by 14 - Just this once, the Universe responds, Rebelcaptain, please and thanks.

Thanks so much for sending one in! This is a Heated Mess™ and very Jyn-centric, but I hope you enjoy it nonetheless. :)

Just this once, the Universe responds

Sometimes, when she’s lying awake in her cell on Wobani, she tries to picture home. The memories are fragments, transparent as glass one moment and blurring at the edges the next - salt on the breeze, Galen laughing and lifting her into the air, the color green, under her nails and in her lungs -

And this, plucked from the haze: Lyra hunched over their kitchen table, eyes shut and breath hissing between her teeth in a reverent whisper.

(Jyn remembers standing very still. It’s not until her mother opens her eyes that she realizes she’s been holding her breath.)

Who are you talking to, Mama? she asks, wide-eyed.

Lyra’s smile is the bright spot of this memory, soft and sad.

Whoever is listening, little star, she says.


Please, Jyn silently begs, please no, please please please -

The man in white shoots her mother. (No one is listening today.)


She stops praying for awhile after that.

Keep reading

she’s gonna save me (call me baby)

This is how Daisy Johnson’s Wednesday morning starts.

“You need a new boyfriend.”

“Sorry?” Daisy blinks up at Raina and thinks longingly about the donut she had to abandon at craft services. It’s six in the morning, she’s been in wardrobe and makeup for over an hour, and Raven, the blue-haired makeup tech, took away her coffee ten minutes away so she could apply Daisy’s lipstick.

“It’s been months since you broke up with Lincoln and the paparazzi are getting bored. Last week, I saw a story claiming that you were into Scientology,” Raina says crisply, fingers already flying over the screen of her phone. Raina, of course, looks like she’s been awake for hours: signature flower-printed dress cinched tight at her waist, designer handbag dangling from her arm, and red lipstick perfectly applied. In the year since Daisy and Bobbi hired Raina as her publicist, she’s never seen the other woman look anything less than perfect. Daisy suspects a deal with demonic forces.

“We need to give them a better story. Set photos of you getting coffee with Natasha Romanov and doing your own fight scenes only go so far,” Raina adds.

“But I’m not seeing anyone right now.” Literally. She’s been filming Nick Fury’s latest spy thriller for the past five weeks and the only people she’s seen outside of the set have been Raina, Bobbi, her agent Melinda May, and her best friend Jemma, who flew out to Antigua for a visit when they were filming there and had to sign about ten nondisclosure agreements.

“It’s not going to be a real boyfriend,” Raina tells her. “Obviously. I’ll collect some suitable candidates and you can pick whichever one you like best.”

Read the rest on AO3!

anonymous asked:

can you do hcs about dating kenny? :0


  • Late night talks: He loves staying up to the ‘serious’ part of the night (you know the one) and having really deep, meaningful conversations. During these he really opens up, not minding the vulnerability. Throughout various conversations he reveals the motives behind constantly wearing his parka, how he feels about his family situation, his alternate identity of Mysterion, what he hopes for in the future, and eventually explains the curiosities of his relationship with death.
  • Messing with his parka: He secretly loves fighting over (and eventually letting you win) his hood always being cinched tight. He finds it especially adorable when you pull a sneak attack on him, pulling down his hood to give him a kiss.
  • Cuddling: Though he tends to be quite perverted, he has a soft spot for cuddling under any circumstance. He often wants you to lay your head on his chest. He also tends to wrap you in his parka with him. He provides an abundance of top of the head kisses and cute whispers each and every time you cuddle.
  • PDA: He tends to deny it, but he loves PDA. Something about showcasing his love in public makes him feel empowered, and making the other guys jealous is just a bonus.

Aaaaaand I think I’ll stop there for now. If your thirst for Kenny isn’t quenched (mine never will be), go ahead and ask for more and I’ll get around to them in a while.

Dolorous Edd Appreciation Post.

I will write no meta or add any commentary. I will just compile quotes from the unappreciated wonder known as Dolorous Edd. Enjoy.

Jon was paired with dour Eddison Tollett, a squire grey of hair and thin as a pike, whom the other brothers called Dolorous Edd. “Bad enough when the dead come walking,” he said to Jon as they crossed the village, “Now the Old Bear wants them talking as well? No good will come of that, I’ll warrant. And who’s to say the bones wouldn’t lie? Why should death make a man truthful, or even clever? The dead are likely dull fellows, full of tedious complaints-the ground’s too cold, my gravestone should be larger, why does he get more worms than I do…”

A Clash of Kings.

Keep reading

Chris Cornell, Searching for Solitude

Read this 1996 Details profile of the Soundgarden frontman, published online for the first time.

This cover story by Jonathan Gold first appeared as in the December 1996 issue of Details, photographed by Albert Watson.

On a soundstage done up to resemble a demented interrogation chamber, Chris Cornell is shackled to a perforated metal dentist’s chair of a sort you imagine Trent Reznor has stored in his garage somewhere. Frances Farmer-grade Velcro restraints bind his wrists to a dull gunmetal crossbar that projects from the chair’s back; his temples sprout shiny plastic things that are supposed to be electrodes, but which more closely resemble bubble-packed Drixoral tablets with wires coming out of them. His baggy sharkskin suit is puckered with exertion and sweat.

On Stage 2 of L.A.’s Occidental Studios, the new Soundgarden video is being filmed. Jerry Casale, who used to play bass in Devo but specializes now in directing apocalyptic videos for guitar bands, gestures toward a P.A., who begins to wrap a thick leather strap around Cornell’s forehead, immobilizing the singer in a position halfway between Malcolm McDowell’s posture of repentance in Kubrick’s Clockwork Orange and Cornell’s own patented Jesus Christ pose.

The video is for Soundgarden’s Beatles-tinged agony epic, “Blow Up the Outside World,” and Casale intends to blow up as much of it as possible on this soundstage. Beavis and Butt-head are going to like this one.

“Is it too warm for you in here?” a gofer asks Cornell. “Would you like a drink of water? Can I get you some cookies to munch on while they set up the shot?”

“Is there going to be a grip nearby?” Cornell cracks, avoiding her eyes to the extent that it is possible for him to do anything at all in three hundred pounds of bondage gear. “I mean, in case I need somebody to scratch my nose.”

The P.A. cinches the strap tight across Cornell’s scalp. He shudders with pain.

“When I give the signal, could you twitch a little?” asks Casale. “To make it look as if you’re really being shocked.”

Cornell strains to flip Casale the finger, but the restraints on his wrists limit his gesture to a mile spasm.

“Hmmmmm,” Casale says. “Perfect.”

If you were Chris Cornell, you would have two Grammys, six albums (seven, if you count Temple of the Dog), and three Pomeranians. Posters of your bare chest would be on the walls of teenagers all over the world. You would spend your mornings wake-surfing near your cabin on Puget Sound; your afternoons snowboarding in the Cascades. Your last album would have sold over five million copies in the United States; your current one, the splendid if art-damaged heavy-rock opus Down on the Upside, would already have sold two million in six months. With Aerosmith imploding, Pearl Jam threatened by willful obscurity, and Metallica slumping into boogie-band senescence, you would be the lead singer and principal songwriter of what is poised to be the Greatest Hard Rock Band in the World.

And sometimes—for days, maybe weeks on end—you would be afraid to leave your house.

It’s not that Cornell has been necessarily wounded by fame or anything—he’s not pulling a Billy Corgan. It’s just that he’s much more comfortable at home with his guitar than he is out in the world. He rarely enters the Seattle scene: When I mention Linda’s, the bar that used to function as the Elaine’s of Seattle rockdom, he has trouble placing the name. On the infrequent occasions he does go out to dinner, it is often as the plus-one of his wife of six years, Susan Silver, who manages Soundgarden as well as Crackerbox, Sweetwater, Sponge, and Alice in Chains. (He has been with Silver, who was his first real girlfriend, since 1984; they occasionally seem like separate parts of the same superorganism.) Random Cornell sightings in the Northwest are almost as rare as sightings of Bigfoot.

You’ll never read about Cornell in a gossip column. Until now, he’s never agreed to be the subject of  a major magazine feature by himself, has never had his adolescent traumas limned by the teen magazines or been psychoanalyzed by the slicks. Though he’s probably granted more than a thousand interviews, his prejudices, neuroses, his views on music are less known than those of less accomplished guys—Scott Weiland or Layne Staley, say, or even Eddie Vedder, who technically doesn’t do interviews at all.

This low media profile is partially due to the fact that Cornell has always wanted Soundgarden to be seen as a band, and partially because guitarist Kim Thayil is so garrulous and opinionated that it’s easy to let him do the press work. (When I was supposed to interview Cornell for Doug Pray’s Seattle-scene documentary Hype! a couple of years ago, he slipped out of the building while the camera crew was still setting up its lights, so that Kim and the drummer Matt Cameron ended up being the only band members talking about Soundgarden in the film.) But it’s also because Chris is so obviously less himself when he’s talking than he is when he’s shut in some room of his own devising, a thousand miles wide. Although in person he’s rarely less than charming, to strangers Cornell can be so shy, so scant of words, that he can seem practically autistic.

I have never seen him smile more broadly than the moment he was told that an article in the Journal of Medical Ethics described happiness as a psychiatric disorder.

Cigarettes help. So do a couple of cranberry and vodkas on the terrace of his hotel room late at night, high above the Sunset Strip, and a view that stretches for miles.

“I’m lucky I get to go out and sing,” Chris says, fumbling for a cigarette lighter, “because when I’m at home, I don’t talk to anyone; I don’t go out socially. My one outlet is that I get to stand in front of five thousand people and sing ‘Outshined.’ When I’m alone between tours, writing songs, I might not speak a word to another human being for a week or two or three.”

Chris gives up on the cigarette lighter and begins toying with the leaves on a ficus.

“People just don’t realize how much fun it is to be depressed,” he says with a grin—this from the man whose moods may have had as much historical impact on the gloominess of Northwest rock as the surfeit of negative ions in the air.

Chris Cornell on the December 1996 cover of Details.

Once, Chris Cornell was a fairly normal kid in a working class Seattle neighborhood, with decent grades in Catholic school, the usual number of friends, five brothers and sisters, piano lessons, then a drum set. The year his parents split up, the year he turned fifteen, Chris dropped out of school and went to work—”already a blue-collar laborer,” as he puts it—as a cook in one of Seattle’s most famous fish restaurants.

Sometimes he would perform experiments on his coworkers: surreptitiously turning off the radio, fading it out between Bad Company songs, timing how long it took for the other cooks to become agitated. Or, when he noticed that all his colleagues were eating breakfast at the end of the restaurant, he would sit alone at the other. Then he would wait to see how long it would take for them—one by one, day by day—to drift over to his side, at which point he would switch ends again. And once, when he was the head line cook, Chris stopped talking altogether. For two months. It drove his coworkers to distraction. That one almost got him fired.

Chris liked that job. It almost didn’t depend on people skills. And he had his music. “A lot of the people in bands looked at me as a whippersnapper greenhorn for working in a restaurant,” he says, “but these same guys couldn’t afford a pack of smokes. They lived like transients in stairwells and garages, and to make money they’d play Billy Idol songs in some new-wave bar for twenty-five bucks a night.”

In 1984, when he was twenty, music became pretty much a full-time job. By then, he’d hooked up with a bass player named Hiro Yamamoto, who introduced him to guitarist Kim Thayil. The three hit it off pretty well, wrote fifteen songs together in a couple of weeks, songs not unlike a couple of the ones that current bass player Ben Shepherd wrote for Down on the Upside. Chris played drums and sang.

One day, Soundgarden were learning a new song Hiro had written, sort of an angry song with a lot of screaming in it. Chris started to scream the chorus piercingly high, the way Hiro had shown him, but something funny happened. Instead of his voice breaking up, he hit the note. Over the next few weeks, Chris explored the upper register he hadn’t known he had—a superb natural instrument, with a power, an expressive, open-throated grace at the top of its range: the pipes of Robert Plant, maybe, or even Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. It was like waking up and discovering not only that the old fiddle you had been using to play “Turkey in the Straw” was a Stradivarius, but that you knew how to play Brahms. Chris gave up drums soon after that.

The first time I saw Chris Cornell onstage was about ten years ago at a dingy East Hollywood punk-rock dive called the Anticlub. The twenty-five or forty kids watching him were probably there to see an L.A. punk band like Saccharine Trust or somebody. Soundgarden weren’t particularly loud, but seemed huge somehow—mountain-sized. The crowd clumped around the perimeter of what was usually the slam pit. They didn’t dance. They didn’t sway. They just stared at Chris as if he were a train wreck, not some shirtless guy singing about the flower, the snake, and the wheel.

The next time I ran into him, backstage at another Hollywood club a couple of years later, amber light seemed to ooze from his face and bare shoulders as he squeezed by in the dark hall, and a dozen conversations stopped short until he found the door to a dressing room and slipped inside.

“What was that?” I asked a friend who had done some of the band’s early promotion.

“That was just Chris,” I was told. “Sometimes he affects people that way.”

“Chris is especially sexual onstage,” Thayil once told me, trying to explain Cornell’s dark-star charisma, “but after the show he’s unavailable. He doesn’t belong to you.”

“Every time I know we have to go out on tour, there’s about three or four weeks where I’m terrified—where I start thinking: That’s not me. I’m not Freddie Mercury. Then I go out onstage and it’s like diving into the cold Puget Sound after spending five weeks in Hawaii—there’s a shock to the system, but the fear goes away.”

Jimi Hendrix had his mojo. Chris Cornell has his hair. It used to be the best in rock—a thick, healthy, jet-black mass that seemed to begin somewhere in the middle of his forehead and cascade for half a mile over his face and nearly to the floor when he lunged forward with his microphone stand, whipping back over his bare shoulders when he straightened up again. Its kinetic energy, as captured in stop motion by Sub Pop’s house photographer Charles Peterson, was for a long time practically the trademark of the new Seattle rock, a wave of purest motion that announced the scene’s distance from the bulging-eyed, bald-guy conventions of traditional punk rock before you’d so much as heard a note.

Like Soundgarden’s heavy, riff-laden tuneage, the hair was a wink at the testosterone-soaked conventions of ‘70s rock—simultaneously mocking heavy metal while being more or less heavy metal itself. Like Soundgarden’s music, the hair, at least on Chris, seemed young and powerful and somehow angelic, and just kind of totally rocked.

The photo of Chris, or rather of Chris and his hair, ended up on the cover of Soundgarden’s Screaming Life EP, which was the first important relic both of Sub Pop and what became known as the Seattle sound. Chris and his hair were part of the package Sub Pop used to sell Seattle to the world—the sizzle that sold the steak.

“The rest of the band,” Cornell says, “thought it was silly of the press to concentrate on the beefcake when I was writing songs, singing, and playing guitar for the band. Even now, some people will stick a paragraph about my hair in the body of a review.”

Cornell flicks his head, which is now crowned with a black, curly, thickety sort of buzz cut that looks a little bit like Marcel-processed African-American hair. “A certain scenario kept repeating itself. The people from the magazines would take two or three shots of the band. They’d start to pack up. And then they’d sort of take me off into a corner by myself. After about the thirtieth time that a photographer asked me to take my shirt off, I started to get the picture.”

Then, in ‘93, when the whole world began to smell like teen spirit, Chris went bald.

“Susan was really busy with one of her bands,” Chris says, “and there was about a month where I never left the house. I didn’t go out in public; I didn’t talk to anyone on the phone—I went a little psycho. If I hadn’t been alone so long, I would not have gone as far as I actually went. But one day, I went from wondering what I would look like with a shaved head to ‘That’s pretty cool.’  Then I put my hair in a big envelope and mailed it off to my wife.

“The funny thing was, I did this really silly, personal thing for no reason, and then all of a sudden it was on MTV News and in Newsweek, and I still hadn’t left the house. I thought it was strange, because I don’t know how anyone found out about my hair, and I don’t know why they cared.”

It’s Cornell’s second night in L.A. He’s been trussed up all day for the video, and now he’s agreed to try on clothes for his impending tour, so we’re at the house of Henry Duarte, a leather designer who has dressed, among many others, Aerosmith, Page and Plant, and Tori Amos. Duarte lives in a spooky old Spanish house above Sunset Plaza, and tonight the air is thick with incense; the living room is littered with Gothic armchairs, Indonesian dolls and screens. The tabletops drip swatches of buttery leathers and rich silks; the armchairs groan under their load of skinny suits and Jim Morrison pants and jackets, designed to telegraph a slice of bare chest out to the forty-seventh row of the balcony.

Proto-grunge diva Natasha and bandmate Alain from Eleven wander in, Natasha in the kind of tight plaid suit Pat Buckley might have worn to La Côte Basque in 1964. Alain sits down and whips through the gigue of a Bach lute suite on a classical guitar. Duarte’s angelic two-year-old drifts down the stairs followed by his mother, and together they regard a toy dump truck with the Zen-like detachment of the old guy on the Nissan commercials. Susan Silver and Jim Guerinot, who between them probably manage a third of the bands on modern-rock playlists nationwide, sip mineral water. I feel as if I’m at the crossroads of all things rock.

And in the middle of the living room, oblivious to the tumult around him, Chris drops his pants again and again, flying in and out of his trousers and shirts, calculating the jut of his hips and the thrust of his legs, feeling the weight of the fabric, luxuriating in the cool smoothness of leather against his bare chest, imagining five thousand people listening to “Outshined,” tuned to him, his voice, his clothes. I look at him and think that this is someone who is almost biomechanically engineered to be a rock star.

It is 2:30 A.M., room service has yet to arrive, and Chris is back on the hotel balcony, still worrying the ficus. The day after next, he’ll be in London, filming MTV specials, dodging the nosy questions of dozens of journalists who still want to know what he thinks about Kurt Cobain.

“Every time I know we have to go out on tour, there’s about three or four weeks where I’m terrified—where I start thinking: That’s not me. I’m not Freddie Mercury. Then I go out onstage and it’s like diving into the cold Puget Sound after spending five weeks in Hawaii—there’s a shock to the system, but the fear goes away. You get used to it, which is pretty cool, because if I stopped performing, I could just disappear and end up being some weird chattering man that walks the streets in rags, staring only at the pavement.

“Reclusivity can become self-perpetuating,” he goes on. “At first you rationalize that going to a club where people recognize you is a bad idea; then going to a neighborhood bar becomes a bad idea, too. Going to the grocery store becomes a bad idea. Answering the phone becomes a bad idea. Then every time the dog barks, you think the National Guard is on your roof ready to drill holes in the shingles and shoot at you. So I have to deal with the outside world on sort of a maintenance level—go out to a bar every so often and just be around people.”

If you were a therapist, you might describe Chris’s behavior as severely antisocial. Then again, Axl Rose pushes pianos out of windows. A proper rock star is supposed to rub against societal niceties—supposed to do whatever it takes to make your parents uncomfortable. In 1961, it was enough that the Beatles had longish hair. In 1969, it was Jim Morrison whipping his dick out onstage; in 1977, Johnny Rotten hawking mucus into the audience. In these days of Oprah and Bill Clinton wanting to feel your pain, emphatic unreachable unhappiness may be the most hostile and provocative response to the mainstream. And who better than Chris Cornell to be the spokesmodel for the post-Ritalin, pre-Prozac generation, who just don’t want to talk about it.

“Is intimacy an issue in your marriage?” I ask, immediately feeling that it is none of my business.

Chris stares hard into the West Hollywood night, picking up the skittering, silent light of an ambulance far below on the plain, following the arc of a helicopter headed downtown.

“Susan gives me a huge amount of room to be that recluse,” he says, “and also the incentive to not be. It’s worth a lot to see her be excited about being around someone who’s not afraid of his shadow. It’s good for her. She digs it. But we’re becoming more alike. When she comes home to me from a day at the office, where she’s talking to people from all over the world about all sorts of important things … well, I probably haven’t answered the phone in seventy-two hours. She knows that when she comes home she’s going to get privacy, because I’m not like ‘These are my South American friends and … honey, have you ever really listened to that first Van Halen album?’ She’s the best roommate I’ve ever had.”

At that moment Susan comes out to tell Chris the room service has arrived. Her hand lies on his wrist as if it had been there always.

“People are sort of perplexed,” Chris says, “as to how this could possibly work in this grunge-music, super-druggy era where everybody is so emotionally screwed up. Not only is Soundgarden not OD’ing on heroin, but the singer’s wife manages the band, there’s no weird Yoko Ono trip, and she’s not trying to make us dress up like lions and unicorns.”

Silver shrugs. “We really get along,” she says. “I’m sorry—I know it would be a better story if I were more like Courtney Love, but that’s not what I do.”

It shouldn’t surprise anyone that a person as private as Cornell doesn’t want to talk about songs he writes. Part of his refusal makes sense—what part of “get on the snake” is it that you don’t understand?

The other part is predictable self-defense. “When you write your own lyrics,” Chris says, “you tend to be overanalytical. One second everything you do is brilliant, and the next, everything is garbage, and I want to be able to express personal things without being made to feel stupid.

“One of the first times I remember writing something personal was on tour. I was feeling really freaky and down, and I looked in the mirror and I was wearing a red T-shirt and some baggy tennis shorts. I remember thinking that as bummed as I felt, I looked like some beach kid. And then I came up with that line—’I’m looking California / And feeling Minnesota,’ from the song ‘Outshined’—and as soon as I wrote it down, I thought it was the dumbest thing. But after the record came out and we went on tour, everybody would be screaming along with that particular line when it came up in the song. The was a shock. How could anyone know that that was one of the most personally specific things I had ever written? It was just a tiny line. But somehow, maybe because it was personal, it just pushed that button.”

An hour before Soundgarden is supposed to fly to London for the beginning of a six-month tour, Chris Cornell is standing on a mussel-encrusted rock at the end of a jetty protruding into Santa Monica Bay. The air is alive with the stink of rotting kelp, and Chris is staring manfully at the skyscrapers of downtown Santa Monica in the distance. He seems like the only man in the world.

About five or six feet away, a photographer, makeup artist, stylist, and a couple of photo assistants are working furiously to make him look even more craggy, brooding, and alone than he already does. The camera crew maneuver around a couple of Mexican dudes surf-casting for croaker, struggling to keep the expensive photo equipment above the surging tide. A woman, incongruously shod in platform heels, almost loses her balance between the biting sand flies and the slippery rocks; an assistant shoos spectators from the jetty.

Breakers, two to three feet high, churn around Chris’s ankles, crush his black boots with salt water, drench his form-fitting trousers, dampen his coat with spray. It must be slippery where he’s standing. But he barely moves, doing his part for the perfect shot—the one of the reluctant rock star, the guy who doesn’t need your or anyone’s attention, the guy who’s never tried to be famous, or ever really wanted to pose for a picture. The guy who just wants to be by himself. Cut off on one side by the image makers, on the other by the vastness of the sea, for the first time this week Chris seems free, alone, alive.

Blood and Sand

Hi there! This is just a gladiator au idea that I got and then when the amazing @buckysbackpackbuckle wrote one (ps its very different so don’t worry and also go read it its incredible xxx) I literally was so excited and had to write one myself! So here it is, it’s pretty short compared to how long my updates usually are but I just wanted something easy and fun today :) Let me know what you think!

Thick steel screeches as two blades clash against each other and meet in a shuttering ‘X’. James the Champion of Rome – hiems et miles, or more affectionately named Bucky by the Roman populous, leans forward and brings his face close to yours through the gap in the glinting metal, taking in the intimate details of your blood, sweat, and dirt caked face. You’ve fought and killed 5 trained fellow gladiators before him. In a row. One after the other. And he was at last called upon (because a champion doesn’t fight a mere slave-woman, a gladiator legend like James deserves more honor than that apparently) to finish off the spectacle, to finish off you for you are the spectacle. James is desperate to see what you’re made of as he searches your features for a hint at where all this “unwomanly” and nearly god like strength is coming from, because whatever it is he wants it.

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