cotton-ball

To the Ball: Part 4

AN: This is the last part of this series. And honestly I’m happy with how it ends. This is in part inspired by the Gilmore Girls Episode Presenting Lorelai Gilmore.

Words: 1289


           You glare at your reflection in the mirror. “You look like a cotton ball.”

           “I think she looks more like a Q-tip.”

           “I was thinking a snow man.”

           You glance at your brothers in the mirror, “I think we can all agree that I look ridiculous.” You turn to face them. “Can you please explain why I have to do this, and none of you had to.”

           Jason grins “We’re lucky enough to not share blood with the man. You however, are his biological daughter. And if it makes you feel any better, I saw him looking up cotillions for Damian yesterday.”

           You try to hide your smile at Damian’s cry of outrage, as he runs out of the room. “Please tell me you’re serious.”

           Jason grins “Not completely.”

           “Explain please.”

           Dick laughs “It wasn’t Alfred who signed him up, it was Tim. Jason just made sure that word got out so that Alfred will force him to do it.”

           You smile and collapse on your bed. Layers of tulle surrounding you “I still say this is a horrible double standard.”

           Tim gives you a small smile “Yeah, but we still have to go. Alfred is making all of us take the night off, and he even had a talk with Superman about not calling us in unless the world was in danger.”

           You sigh. “At least I won’t suffer alone.”

           Dick grins from his place on the floor “I think Bruce will suffer the most. He has to present you to society, and he hates society.”

           “I’m not too fond of it myself.”

           Jason scoffs “None of us are. But we do what we have to.”

           “Says the man who doesn’t have to wear heels.”

           “True, but I have to wear a tux.”

           You sit up and glare at him “I have to do a curtsey.”

           “I’ll get attacked by socialite ladies.”

           “I have to do that ridiculous fan dance!”

           There’s a moment of silence before Dick simply says “She wins.”

           Jason concedes right before Damian bursts back. Fury is written plainly on his face as he growls “DRAKE. TODD! I’LL KILL YOU BOTH.”

           You watch in amusement as your brother chases the two out of the room, and Dick follows in an attempt to keep Damian from actually killing them. You just take one last look in the mirror before you groan.

           You make sure to bring several books on the day of your debutant ball. You’re ready before everyone else, and you very quickly realize that these debutants are not people to be messed with. They’re all stressed out, and focused on making sure tonight is perfect. You’re half way through a novel when the whispers hit you.

           “All of them are here?”

           “Yep, every single Wayne male is here, biological and adopted.”

           “Any particular reason why?”

           “Not a clue. But if you can get in with one the boys or even Mr. Wayne himself you’re set for life. I hear that in his will he split everything evenly, even with the adopted ones.”

           “Doesn’t he have to of his own children.”

           “Mmhm, both born out of wedlock.”

           One of the girl’s giggles “There’s a way to get set up for life, just pop out one his children and take the child support.”

           There’s a round of giggles, but you’ve heard all you can take. You quietly leave the room for the hallway. You pass by the escorts in favor of a little cove to yourself. You settle in, careful of your dress and start reading again. You enjoy the quiet until someone plops down beside you.

           You glance up at the sight of brown hair and grin “I honestly didn’t think you were going to show.”

           Bart Allen smiles at you “Like I had a choice. Once Alfred got to grandma, everything else was history. For some reason Grandma Iris was really excited at the thought of the entire family dressing up and going out. The Garrick’s came too. ”

           You smile. You had met Bart Allen several months ago at a tennis tournament of all things. It had been at the national level and your team had made it. So had Bart’s. For some reason he had known you immediately on sight and introduced himself. A friendship had been struck up that day, one the Damian seemed to detest.  So most of your interactions took place at the Garrick’s house, where Bart lived. You simply took the Zeta tube and the rest was history.

           You had tried to spare him from it, but Alfred had thought that he’d make the perfect escort for the evening. Your father on the other hand … You’d found that he had become very overprotective when it came to boys since your father daughter relationship had begun.

           You smile at him, and then all of a sudden he says “Got to go.”

           Two seconds later your father shows up. He raises an eyebrow in question before saying “If you’re trying to sink through the floor I don’t think it’s working.”

           You stand up, careful of your heels and the hem of your dress and say “More like I was trying to escape the harpies.”

           “That bad?”

           “Apparently you, and the boys are a meal ticket to be set for the rest of their life. I’d really watch what you drink tonight.”

           “You think I’m that naive?”  

           “Isn’t that how you got me and Damian.”

           “Damian, yes. You however come from too many shots of tequila, and a very low tolerance for alcohol.”

           You laugh “Like I said watch your drinks.”

           He just nods and extends his arm. “Shall we.”

           The entire thing is embarrassing. Especially, the fan dance. But it makes Alfred happy, and if he’s happy you’re happy. As expected more than a few escorts are abandoned in favor of your brothers. And even Bart gets a few offers until he suddenly disappears.

           You find him out on the patio feeding bread to ducks. He grins as you sit down next to him “Careful they might think you’re a swan, and try and make you their queen.”

           You scoff “I have one family of birds; I don’t need another.”

           He smiles at you “You finally found your family hunh?”

           You smile and nod “Yeah, I think I did.”

           “It’s funny when your first showed up they were all so panicked. They had no idea what to do with a girl around full time. Sure they’d had Barbara around every once in a while, but she went home at the end of the night. They honestly had no idea what to do with you. Then things started to change. Suddenly your name was being brought up all the time. And man they were proud when you won your matches at the tournament. They almost killed me when I started bragging that I actually saw you play.”

           “As strange as they are, and as bad a start as we had, I’ve really grown to love it here. Grown to love them. I miss my mom, but at the same time I’m really glad I have them.”

           He just grins “And what about me?”

           You smile as you lean in and kiss him “I am ecstatic that I met you Bart Allen.”

           “WHAT THE HELL?”

           The two of you quickly separate at the sound of Jason’s voice. Bart just leans in kisses you really quick and says “Got to go, see you Thursday.” You laugh as he rushes off and Jason speeds after him, yelling “Come back you sister kissing, speedster.” A moment later your other brothers speed out the door. As you watch them go all you can think is that you’re truly a part of the family.

anonymous asked:

i can't believe that i never noticed your “ask” was replaced with “would you like a side of balls with that?” ( ̄▽ ̄;;) i really like your blog (and the copious amount of “balls”), and i hope it's okay for me to request yakuza!au scenarios for iwaizumi, kuroo, akaashi, and matsukawa with a female s/o. if not that is okay!! thank you!!

Hehehe, thank you ;) Ball is life, you know? And it is more than okay to request Yakuza/Mafia AUs! This was a lot of fun to write, and actually Admin Panini and I have a lot of mafia AU headcanons. I’ll probably get around to writing those some time soon for fun. 

Have I mention I love Yakuza/Mafia AUs? Because I do, very much so! :D ~Admin Mari


“Hold still, Hajime.” You frowned deeply as you tried to apply more disinfectant on the cut that decorated his cheek. When the cotton ball grazed the wound, Iwaizumi Hajime sucked in a sharp breath when the hot sting followed after. All you did was click your tongue before you repeated the action, something he knew you did to get back at him. “You’re worse than Tooru.”

“Don’t compare me to Shittykawa. I’m not a baby like him.” He grumbled, his eyes shifting away as you placed a few butterfly bandages along the cut. Of course, it was only natural that you were upset with him. But it wasn’t like he planned to get injured when he woke up this morning. Sometimes things were unpredictable and the yakuza life was the most unpredictable.

You heaved a deep sigh and tossed the wrappers into the trash beside the table. Then, you turned to gently brush your fingertips along the cut you had just dressed. His eyes softened when he saw the worry lines between your brows and he reached out to pull you against him. It didn’t matter if his muscles protested the action; having you in his arms helped him feel at ease.

“Don’t worry, I’m okay. It’s just a scratch anyway.” He rested his chin on your shoulder and buried his free hand into your hair, fingers weaving through the softness. It was his way of reassuring you. Which was kind of silly because you were Aobajohsai’s doctor and you knew how bad each injury was.

“How can I not worry about you?” You mumbled into the crook of his neck, arms wrapping around his middle. “You’re my boyfriend. I always worry.” The sincerity melted his heart and the corners of his lips quirked up before he leaned back to get a better look at you.

“I think I could get used to that.” That earned him a slap on the chest, but he caught your hand before you retracted it. Instead, he lifted it up to his cheek and placed your hand there with his over yours. Then, he leaned forward to place a soft kiss on your lips. “I love you.”

“I love you too, dummy.” You smiled sweetly, following his lips to press another kiss against his.


The moment you’d laid eyes on Kuroo Tetsurou you were hooked. Perhaps it was the unruly hair that was surprisingly all natural, maybe it was that mischievous twinkle in his eyes, or maybe it was that charming smirk that had your heart skipping a beat. Whatever it was, you had locked in on him. He was like the most potent of drugs and you were addicted to him. Addicted to his kisses, his touches, his sweet words.

Every time the both of you met up, it was romantic and sweet. When you two were together, he could put his guard down for a while and just enjoy the moment without a worry in the world. The two of you would spend hours talking, flirting, and laughing. Then, the two of you would set the sheets on fire with passion and ecstasy.

You nestled comfortably against Kuroo’s side, cheek pressed against his chest. The after effects of the mind-blowing pleasure were subsiding, and all that was left was the satisfied humming on your skin and in your veins. Kuroo’s arm was wrapped protectively around your waist as he mindlessly traced patterns along the damp skin.

However, the comforting silence didn’t last very long because the sound of his cellphone pierced through the air. Grumbling under his breath, he reached over with his free hand and answered the phone.

“Hello?” He asked, but a sigh followed when the voice on the other end began to speak. His eyes glanced down at you before he cut the voice off on the other end. “Yaku, just tell him I’ll be rescheduling the meeting. The old geezer can wait a day, it’s not like he’s going to die any time soon.” You had to stifle your giggles and Kuroo flashed you a smirk. It was obvious that the person on the other end, Yaku, wasn’t very impressed by Kuroo’s response and he got a bit of an earful before he hung up.

“What was that about?” You asked, lifting yourself up onto your elbow to look at Kuroo.

He sighed and ran a hand through his hair, somehow making his hair look sexier. “It was my right-hand man. My father has been trying to set a meeting up.” There was a pause as he looked at you with sorrow clouding his eyes. “For my arranged marriage.”

That was like an anvil to your heart and you felt your chest squeeze in pain. Instantly, your body went cold and dread clung to every cell. The protests that threatened to spill out died on your lips, because what could you say? Kuroo was the next boss to Nekoma while you were just a call-girl that he had unexpectedly met at a club one night.

But that had never mattered to him. Because when you two were together, you guys were just yourselves.

“Tetsu…” You whispered, your heart throbbing in your chest. Of course, you knew one day he would probably have to get married to keep the lineage going, but you hadn’t hoped it would happen so soon. “Don’t go yet. Stay longer with me.”

He cupped your chin and lifted your head up to look at him. The easy-going smile that you’d fallen in love with was on his face. “I’m not going anywhere. I’ll stay as long as you want me to.”


You knew him as the London Fog guy and he knew you as the Barista with a Pretty Smile. The coffee shop a few blocks away from the Fukurodani house was becoming a favourite of Akaashi Keiji’s. He’d accidentally stumbled upon it months ago after needing some fresh air and that’s when he had first seen you. The second he had walked in through the door, you had greeted him with the prettiest smile he’d ever seen and from that moment on, he was completely enamoured. He had only wondered how on Earth he’d passed by this street without noticing the dainty café.

Several times a week, Akaashi would slip away from the mansion and bring his paperwork with him. It was much more peaceful without having to listen to Bokuto jabber away and he got more work done this way since he was pulling his boss’ weight too. Today was no different.

“Large London Fog?” You chimed with that beautiful smile that made Akaashi’s heart stutter.

The corners of his lips twitched into a smile and he nodded his head. “Yes, please.” He dug into his wallet, producing a bill to give to you. The amount he gave you was much larger than the cost of the tea latte. And when you tried to give him the change, he only curled his hand over yours. “It’s the tip.”

“O-oh, but…it’s too much. You’re always too generous.” There was a shy blush on your cheeks and you looked unsure if you could take it.

Akaashi chuckled softly, shaking his head lightly. His large hand stayed in place, relishing in the contact and warmth of your hand. “It’s the least I could do for the delicious London fogs you always make me.” And money was never a problem for him. After all, Fukurodani mainly dealt with money.

“I-I’m…” You started, but finally relented. “Thank you.”

“Akaashi.” When you gave him a confused look, the corner of his lip quirked up. “That’s my name.”

“Oh!” Your eyebrows shot up to your hairline and your cheeks flushed in embarrassment. Then, you gestured to your name tag and gave him that brilliant smile again. “I’m ____.”

When he sat down in his usual seat, his heart was fluttering in his chest and his eyes were instantly on you as you prepared his drink. His gaze lingered a few more seconds before he started on the paperwork again, a reminder of the dark world he lived in. It was a place where someone as innocent as you didn’t belong in and a place he didn’t want to drag you into.

A soft clink caught his attention and he looked up at you then at the plate beside his cup. “It’s coffee cake. This one’s on me.”

There was no way he could tell you about the dangerous part of him, the dangerous life he led where blood and death were a constant. “Thank you.” And yet, he couldn’t help but gesture to the chair across from his. “Would you like to sit with me?”

You were the Barista with the Pretty Smile and he was the London Fog guy; that was the way it had to stay.


“Hime-san.”

“Stop calling me that.” You huffed, childishly crossing your arms over your chest. Matsukawa Issei only grinned lazily in response, and watched as your cheeks flushed in annoyance and embarrassment. Making you flush was one of the things he enjoyed doing and he honestly couldn’t help himself sometimes. It was easy to get you going.

Being the younger sister of Oikawa Tooru was no easy feat, especially when he was the head of Aobajohsai, one of the top yakuza families in Japan. It also wasn’t easy when your older brother was extremely protective of you, spouting out nonsense about keeping you safe from other rival yakuza. Since he became the head after your father, he had insisted on having your own personal bodyguard.

That’s where Matsukawa came in. Oikawa had assigned him as your bodyguard several years ago. At the beginning, he’d believed that it would be a boring babysitting job, but you’d proven him wrong with that defiant personality. For a while, you had avoided Matsukawa as much as possible, which usually meant sneaking away when his head was turned the other way. You kept him on his toes and he had soon begun to enjoy watching over you. He loved teasing you as much as he loved teasing Oikawa.

“Mattsun.” You drawled, your cheek resting against your fist. His eyes shifted to peek at you from the rear view mirror and he hummed for you to continue. “I want ice cream. Can we go get some?”

“Anything for the princess.” There was that blush again along with that irresistible pout. A deep chuckle resonated within his chest and he signaled to take a turn at the next corner, knowing where your favourite ice cream parlor by heart.

After spending years with you, he knew where all your favourite places were. He knew what made you happy and what made you sad. He was the first to know any troubles you had and the shoulder you cried on when you needed it. He was shield and your sword, and he vowed to stand by you not because it was his duty, but because he wanted to.

“You’ve got some ice cream here.” Matsukawa said, several minutes later when the both of you emerged out of the ice cream shop with waffle cones in hand. Gently, he thumbed away the light ice cream moustache on your upper lip and chuckled when your eyes went crossed eyed to try and see what he was doing. “There, all gone.”

Matsukawa had fallen in love with you.

6

Regrowing Cotton from a Store-Bought Bouquet

These past few years, I’ve been noticing decorative bouquets of cotton appearing at floral shops/nurseries during the holiday season, at least around my region in Northeastern US. Still attached to their original stalks, the tufts are sometimes gilded with gold paint or dusted with glitter. What I realized this year was that the cotton bolls are stilled filled with seeds, but they were damn tricky to pluck out. Aaaaaaand they are aliiiiive!!!! Your guess is as good as mine as to the genetic makeup. It’s highly likely these are GMOed, but I’ll be growing these indoors for curiosity. Given my climate, I don’t hold much hope on growing this into maturity, but who knows…

This is a cool image of a cloud hanging around over Japan’s Mount Fuji.

The cloud is in fact a lenticular cloud. Lenticular clouds, also known as; altocumular standing lenticularis clouds, are formed when a current of moist air is forced upwards as it travels over elevated land. This elevation and subsequent decrease in temperature causes the moisture in the air to condense and form a cloud.

Lenticular clouds appear to be perfectly stationary, but in fact, this is not the case. These clouds only appear stationary because the flow of moist air continually resupplies the cloud from the windward side even as water evaporates and vanishes from the leeward side. Lenticular clouds can look like they are hovering for hours or days, until the wind or weather changes and the clouds disperse.

This particular cloud also looks really like a piece of cotton wool!

The imaged was snapped by the DigitalGlobes’s Worldview satellite on the 20th of September 2012.

-Jean