at the request of @poor-queequeg and @omnomnomelette, a fic where our dragon kylo boops the boot (and is mischievous about it)

Kylo soared above the valley, Rey clinging to him tightly as she was buffeted by the wind. Her knees would be bruised, she was sure, but she was not about to risk falling however hundreds of feet to her death, Kylo’s assurances that he wouldn’t let her fall be damned.

What are we even doing out here? Rey asked. It was several degrees below freezing and windy to boot. With the way the clouds hung in the sky, she wouldn’t be surprised if they’d have another snowfall by that night.

You’ll see, he answered. Rey huffed. Kylo wasn’t in a chatty mood today, hadn’t been yesterday either, and was becoming increasingly cagey with his answers.

He landed in front of a large, stone structure that had been built into the mountain. Rey dismounted, careful not to slip on any ice. An arched doorway loomed above her, icicles hanging like teeth. What is this?

A tomb. He rustled his wings and stepped inside, ducking his head. Careful of the icicles; one could impale you.

Impale. What a lovely word.

Keep reading

anonymous asked:

Wang routines kinda gave me new perspective on this Chinese team. I think they were 100% low balled this entire quad but at the same time I also never fell in love with their gymnastics. I feel like this team was much sloppier than what we're used from them. I love their life stories and how sweet they're but in terms of gymnastics I never felt it. But seeing Wang Wan routine I kind of fell in love again, she was much improved and so sharp. I still hope we can see new blood next quad ...

Wang Yan definitely improved a lot on floor since Glasgow and her consistency has improved everywhere. What I love about Wang Yan is the variety in her skills - she can do difficult and well-executed leaps and jumps on beam but also really difficult forward and backward acro with a hard dismount.  On floor I love that she can do big tumbles like a double double but also crazy combination passes with multiple twists. 

I’d agree that the current Chinese team is sloppier than, say, the Beijing team, and there are some juniors coming up who have really excellent form and technique - like Chen Xiaoqing, for example.  But I also think the current team has made a lot of improvements that have gone unnoticed - for instance, Shang’s extension on beam:

She really doesn’t have soft knees anymore.  For some reason, people still act as though her beam set is done the way it was in Antwerp, but it’s really not.  For comparison, even though she has a lot of good qualities too, Aly Raisman has much softer knees and more offensive acro elements on beam:

Before you flame me, I realize that Aly has a lot of other favorable qualities that help earn her a good score. She’s confident, aggressive, has good rhythm, is powerful, etc.  But the anon said “sloppy”, so that’s what I’m responding to.  I’m not claiming anything about scores, and there is more to a routine than form errors in acro skills, but if you think Shang is sloppy and Aly isn’t I have news for you.

Anyway, I agree with you that the Chinese team in 2016 wasn’t as crisp and sharp as 2008.  Partly due to circumstances (Shang being sick, Fan Yilin having a shitty quals, Tan Jiaxin having an elbow injury, Mao Yi having a meltdown) and partly cause they’re not quite at the level of the 2008 team.  At their best I think they come close - like if you take Tan Jiaxin’s 2015 DTY, and Mao Yi’s 2016 Chinese nationals FX, and Shang Chunsong’s trials UB set  - but they didn’t really put it all together.  I still think they were egregiously underscored, though. 


Blackhearts in Petawa.

Apache Company, 1st Battalion, 2nd Brigade, Task Force Strike, 101st Airborne Division, patrol through Petawa village, Parwan province, Afghanistan.

Pictured are: (1) First Lieutenant Kenneth Hurst, (2-4) Captain Rodney Freeman, and (4) First Lieutenant Matthew White.

(U.S. Army photos by Corporal George Huley, 13 JUN 2014.)

anonymous asked:

When it comes to shadowhunters which do you rpefer the books or the show?


Originally posted by wifflegif

Look I read the books (the original trilogy that is) eons ago and yeah back then they were life changing for me, I’d never read anything in a published format that had a gay couple in it so the books meant a great deal to me once upon a time. 

Thing is I’ve grown up now. And with age comes wisdom and there is so much problematic shite in the books it would take a four year university course and dissertation to cover it all. 

Now the show on the other hand, its good. Its better than good, its progressive in a way the books could have been but ultimately fell short off. To put it simply:


Originally posted by ui-ux-designs-ahh


Originally posted by mustafinesse


SOLDIER STORIES: He Was a Marine You Could Count On

[Top] A firing detail of U.S. Marines with Charlie Company, 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, fire a three-volley salute in honor of Lance Cpl. Ramon T. Kaipat, an infantryman who served with Charlie Co. and 22-year-old native of Tacoma, Wash., during a memorial service here, April 16, 2012. 

[Bottom] U.S. Marine Staff Sgt. Dustin Hanson, a section leader with Charlie Company, 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, observes a moment of silence in respect for Lance Cpl. Ramon T. Kaipat, killed in action during a dismounted patrol in support of combat operations in Helmand province’s Khan Neshin district. Kaipat’s brothers-in-arms remember him as a caring and humble warrior, who placed the welfare of his fellow Marines before his own.

(Story & photos by Corporal Alfred V. Lopez, 16 April 2012 via DVIDS.)

COMBAT OUTPOST TAGHAZ, Afghanistan – He came from Saipan in his freshman year of high school, graduated, and joined the Marine Corps to serve his country.

He would run through a wall, if that was what it took to accomplish the mission. 

He would go out on a limb to protect a fellow Marine.

He was a Marine you knew you could count on. 

He was firm but fair, and he was the only Marine that can put a smile across the whole platoon’s face.

“He” was Lance Cpl. Ramon T. Kaipat, an infantryman who served with Charlie Company, 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, and 22-year-old native of Tacoma, Wash., and these were a few of the words his fellow Marines used to describe his character for those who didn’t know him, during a memorial ceremony here, April 16, 2012.

While leading a dismounted patrol in Khan Neshin District, Kaipat sustained mortal wounds from an improvised explosive device. He was medically evacuated to Forward Operating Base Payne’s medical treatment facility, where he succumbed to his wounds.

Kaipat’s fellow Marines shared their personal encounters with the audience during the ceremony, painting a clear picture of an exemplary Marine, caring friend, and righteous brother.

“Kaipat chose to serve the United States in a way that most American’s never consider,” said Lt. Col. George Schreffler, the commanding officer of 1st LAR. ”He chose the path less traveled, and accepted all of the hardships and risks that he encountered along the way.”

He came from Saipan in his freshman year of high school.

Kaipat was born in the U.S. Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. After emigrating from Saipan to the United States and graduating from Mount Tacoma High School in 2008, he immediately enlisted in the Marine Corps. Late that year he graduated from recruit training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, and then attended Infantry Training School in Camp Pendleton, Calif. 

In March 2009, Kaipat was ordered to report to 1st LAR, where he was assigned to Charlie Co. He deployed with the battalion on their previous tour to Afghanistan in 2010, and had been operating in Khan Neshin district since October 2011.

“He knew that his service contributed to making the United States and the rest of the world better,” explained Schreffler. “He touched the lives of the Marines in his platoon, and Afghans half a world away from his home.”

He would run through a wall, if that was what it took to accomplish the mission.

One Marine remembers Kaipat as an honorable man, one who inspired both his junior Marines and his senior leaders.

Corporal Shane Wilson, an infantryman with Charlie Co., who went through boot camp, the School of Infantry, and two combat deployments with Kaipat, remembers his fallen brother as a Marine who always led by example. 

“When we checked in to 1st LAR together, we both had our fresh high-and-tights, standing there in the position of attention, nervous as can be,” said Wilson. “But Kaipat stood there, firm and strong.”

“He always led from the front, and protected our lives during patrols,” explained Wilson. “Kaipat was the type of man we all strive to become.”

“I can speak so much about my mentor, my example, my brother, my hero and most of all, my friend…it was an honor to have served with him, and to have walked next to a great man,” Wilson said.

He would go out on a limb to protect a fellow Marine.

“I’ve only know Lance Corporal Kaipat for less than a year,” said 1st Lt. Peter Six, Kaipat’s platoon commander with Charlie Co. “But I can tell from his actions what kind of man he was.”

Six recalled his courage during a patrol on New Year’s Eve 2011, when, after another Marine was injured, Kaipat tenaciously posted security on an exposed position, allowing the injured Marine to be treated and evacuated.

“He took his job as a Marine very seriously, and dedicated himself to accomplishing any task he was given,” explained Six. “He served as the point man for over 80 patrols, choosing a safe path and clearing the way and making sure that path is safe for us to take.”

He was a Marine you knew you could count on.

Lance Cpl. Steven Medlock, an infantryman with Charlie Co. who served with Kaipat, recalled simple occasions, when “Ray” would take care of him, regardless of time and place.

“Several times, I came back to the barracks at 4 o’clock on Monday morning, and he would hook me up with a haircut,” said Medlock. “He would sometimes wait for me, coming home late from a party or a date, and ask me, ‘What took you so long, I was worried sick!’”

“It didn’t matter what shape I was in, he was always there to pick me up,” explained Medlock. “He’s still with us, he’s still in our hearts and we need to live on for him.”

He was firm but fair.

Lance Cpl. Peter Kalla, an infantryman with Charlie Co., told the audience that it was an honor being one of Kaipat’s junior Marines. He spoke of stories about the man he remembers as moral and just.

“When I first arrived at 1st LAR, it was on a field day,” recalled Kalla. “I had no idea who was going to be checking our rooms when we were done cleaning. After a while, I heard a knock on the door, and when I opened it, there stood Kaipat, with a pissed off look on his face. He told me ‘I’m here to inspect your room’.”

“At that point, he walked in and quickly found three things that were dirty,” said Kalla. “He then turned to my roommate and myself, and told us that if he came back and found our room dirty again, that we would spend all night cleaning it.”

“I didn’t know who that Marine was at the time, but I did know that I was afraid of him at the time,” explained Kalla. “It wasn’t until a few weeks later, and a few wrestling matches between us that Kaipat and I became close.”

“He always won our matches,” said Kalla. “I told him, ‘I’ll beat you once, if it takes me a thousand tries.’ On one day, I must have tried at least ten times, and he beat me at least ten times.”

“We started doing everything together,” said Kalla. “And during all that time, Kaipat was teaching me, giving me pointers, and still winning our wrestling matches.”

“One of things he taught me, was that anything that sucks, will always end eventually,” remembered Kalla. “It didn’t matter if it was a working party or something as long as a deployment, he knew it would end eventually, and you can carry on with your life.”

Kalla said that whether it was making sure he remembered lessons from a class (while holding him in a head-lock), knocking on the door at 2 A.M. to ask if he wanted a burrito, or making sure he got a haircut on Sundays, Kaipat took care of him like an older brother.

As the company first sergeant called his name for the honorary roll call, Kaipat’s fellow warriors didn’t hear his voice, familiar to many of them for the firmness with which he gave his orders, and for the laughter he shared with them. Instead, they stood in silence as a detail fired a three-volley salute into the air, remembering him for his actions as a leader, a friend, and brother.

imagine if spark is actually a biker tho

I think we’re all operating under the assumption that all the leather is just a Final Fantasy-esque fashion thing but imagine if his main mode of transportation actually is a motorcycle.

Imagine him pulling up to the lab for the first day as a researcher. Willow and the other two future leaders are outside waiting while they make introductory small talk.

Candela and Blanche see this guy cut his engine, dismount, and silently turn to them. His jacket is zipped up, so they mostly see black, including his helmet which has a reflective gold visor so his face is completely obscured. They’ve heard of his accomplishments as a trainer. Candela’s like, “Fuck yes I get a badass new coworker, I bet we can spar.” Blanche is thinking, “I shouldn’t stereotype but I really hope they aren’t rude or crass.” Then he takes off his helmet.

And he has this huge goofy grin on his face, starts prattling off stuff like, “Yooo! Hey! This is so exciting! Man, I can’t believe I get to work with you all! Oh, dang, I almost forgot, I’m Spark, by the way,” he runs forward a bit at first, then has to turn around and run back to put his helmet down, so then he can run over all the way to shake everyone’s hands so enthusiastically, the whole side of their body shakes too, and he tries to show them all his pokemon one by one, but he only gets as far as pulling out his wallet before Professor Willow stops him because they really need to get to business.

(The three of them all show each other their pokeymans later when Daaaad Willow gives them free time. Yes, all three of them keep photos of their pokemon in their wallet why wouldn’t they?)


Japanese Junior Mana Oguchi competes on the balance beam during the 2016 Japanese Event Nationals.  She competes a wide array of unique skills - a front pike mount, 1-½ Y Turn, Yang Bo jump, and a running Front 2/1 dismount.  She will turn senior in 2018.

Diamond in the Rough” Series (8/) - Love Birt

This is Love Birt! She’s 10 years old and a HOPES athlete at First State Gymnastics. She trains very closely with Junior International Elite teammate, Morgan Hurd, and shows enormous talent on all four events. What’s even more astounding about Love is that this is only her THIRD year in gymnastics! Remarkably, she has achieved numerous skills since then, such as a full-twisting DLO dismount off of bars, a FTY on vault, a toe-full on bars, a double-double dismount into the pit off of bars, toe-on blind half front-giant, front-aerial + sheep jump on balance beam, DLO dismount off of bars, a 2 ½ on floor, a round-off 1 ½ + front-full on floor, bhs + lloso + loso on balance beam, and a double pike on floor. In only her first year as a HOPES athlete, Love placed 3rd on balance beam and 12th AA at the 2016 HOPES Championships. This is only the beginning for Love and we can’t wait to see what’s next. Good Luck Love!

I’m very happy to read Gennady Sartinskiy (Oleg’s coach) feels the judging and end result were fair. He points out the landings of Oleg’s dismounts on pbars and high bar as the deciding factors between gold and silver. But he’s very proud of what Oleg has done because Kohei was always heads above everyone…until today. He feels it’s only the start for Oleg. 

Got your six covered.

U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Brandon Mann, a dog handler with Alpha Company, 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, and native of Arlington, Texas, sights in with his infantry automatic rifle while providing security with Ty, an improvised explosive device detection dog, during a patrol.

Marines and sailors with 1st LAR and India Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, conducted clearing and disrupting operations in and around the villages of Sre Kala and Paygel during Operation Highland Thunder. Marines with 1st LAR led the operation on foot, sweeping for enemy weapons and drug caches through 324 square kilometers of rough, previously unoccupied desert and marshland terrain. Mobile units with 1st LAR set up blocking positions and vehicle check points while India Company, 3/3 conducted helicopter inserts to disrupt insurgent freedom of movement.

[Photo by Corporal Alfred V. Lopez, 16 February 2012.]

My First Ironman - Vineman Race Recap - The Finale!

“I must stay conscious
Through the madness and chaos
So I call on my angels
They say

Oh, ye of so little faith
Don’t doubt it, don’t doubt it
Victory is in your veins
You know it, you know it
And you will not negotiate
Just fight it, just fight it
And be transformed” - Katy Perry “Rise”, My Vineman Power song!

In case you missed it, Part I is here and Part II is here.


I saw a few members of my cheer squad, Sharon, Ed and Rae, as I made the final turns to the bike finish and T2.  I was SO HAPPY TO SEE THEM and equally as happy to start the marathon.  My joy was compounded when I saw @robbsadventure and @happyfitrunnergirl as I dismounted the bike!  I knew at that point that no matter what, I would be an Ironman and I was practically jumping for joy as I entered T2.  I handed off my bike to a lovely volunteer, grabbed my Bike to Run bag from the station, and ran to the changing tent.  It had been such a hot day and I could not wait to change out of my bike jersey and into my tri kit top.  I took my time to change and make sure I had everything I needed.  I was a little concerned about getting sunburned in the final hours of sun so I slathered on the sunscreen.  I checked to make sure that my discomfort on the seat did not equate to chaffing and low and behold it did not appear that I had chaffed.  Whew!  I filled my water bottle with ice to cool the drink as I had been instructed by Stacy and ran off to run the marathon!  


All smiles as I began the run!  Pretty sure I was screaming “YAY I’m running a marathon!”

I saw more members of my cheer squad, Becky and Luis, as I exited T2.  I screamed and waved to them as I made my way out of the park.  As I made my way, I saw the rest of my squad!  I could not have been happier.  

Run Course details and race strategy: The Vineman run course had been changed from 2 to 3 loops days before the race which meant a lot more climbing.  The park turn around was a loop de loop which made for a interesting technical run through every loop.  It was technical in the sense that it was super narrow and a lot of turns through crowds of people.  Coach Sonja gave me a specific run plan, run the flats at MAF and power walk the hills.  The race nutrition plan called for no coke on the bike even though it would be hot and I would want it, it was too early for coke.  I was not to start drinking coke until the second half of the marathon.  My T2 water bottle was half Osmo/half Osmo Pre-load, with ice and water.  After I finished that I was to mix half water and half gatorade (course drink) to keep up the fluids.  I had clif shot blocks and skratch chews with me and planned to eat salty snacks (chips and pretzels) at the aid stations.  

Back to the run: I was so excited to start running that I went out the gate a bit too hard.  I had my garmin set to HR and it was a little high so I pulled it back.  I started down the steep down hill and knew I would be climbing back up it three times before days end.  I broke the marathon up into three segments in my mind, each loop getting me closer to the finish line.  I felt great from the start and started to chat with those around me.  Ironman runners are NOT CHATTY.  I commented to women on their cute kits, talked to a few other first timers, and took in the scenery.  As I made my way through the first set of aid stations, the coke looked really inviting.  It was SO HOT and it looked so refreshing.  Coach Sonja’s plan had taken me this far and I was not going to deviate.  I was focused!  I stayed with the plan and did not drink the coke.  

As I ran to the first turn around at mile 4 I saw TEAM KATE, my adopted cheer squad that followed me around the course all day long.  I never did see Kate but her squad made my day!  I kept trucking along to the first big climb of the day at mile 7.  I started power walking and that kept my heart rate at MAF.  I am glad that Sonja gave me permission to power walk because it kept my heart rate on track and also gave me the time to eat and drink as I made my way up the hill.  I made my way back through the park and saw all of my cheer squad, including my 2 year old niece Riley.  She was so happy to see me! It gave me such a boost to give her a high five! 

Screaming to my cheer squad and getting ready to give Riley and the rest of the squad a high five! 

The miles clicked by and my positive attitude never wavered.  I was probably voted most annoying by the rest of the athletes because I practically floated with excitement through the marathon and wanted to spread my cheer to everyone.  Most of those around me were on a death march of a marathon.  It was a hot, tough day, no doubt about it.  But I chose a different state of mind.  I kept telling everyone that my coach Sonja is a genius and that the plan worked.  Some of the people I spoke to said that they had no plan or that they had a cramp off the bike and had to walk the marathon.  For those who had no plan, all I could say was WOW.  One guy was from Romania who now lives in Kona.  He did the Honu 70.3 and decided to race Vineman on a whim.  An Ironman on a whim??  Amazing.  I worked every day for nine months just for this day and 10 years of endurance sport before that. 


Mile 132 Posing for the cameras as I tell my INCREDIBLE squad good bye until the finish line! 

The final loop was magical.  I began to feel the fatigue in my legs set in as the sun went down.  Perhaps it was the immediate change in temperature?  I tightened up a bit but keep running.  I did not deviate from the plan.  My pace slowed but I did not care, I kept running.  It was finally time to drink the coke I had been looking forward to all day but GUESS WHAT??? THEY RAN OUT! LOL  Instead, I went for the chicken broth that Stacy had suggested for the second half of the run.  The chicken broth was a magical elixir.  With three miles to go, THERE WAS TEAM KATE!!!  I blew them kisses and told them that they had made my day.  Seriously.  That bright pink crew cheered for me like they had known me forever.  SO SO COOL!  I could start crying as I think about them and the difference they made for me when times got tough on the bike.  THANK YOU TEAM KATE!!!!

The final two miles I told everyone that I saw on the side of the road that I was about to be an IRONMAN!  They cheered right back at me.  I entered the park for the last time and made my way through the last loop de loop and back to the high school and the finish line.  I could hear the announcer, not Mike Reilly but the other guy, announcing names and I started to well up.  I knew that I wanted that finishing chute all to myself.  As I rounded toward the finish I started to walk to let the guy in front of me finish.  I had the whole chute to myself and the tears started flowing.


I collapsed in tears into the arms of my family and friends.  This was one of the most incredible days of my life.  I want to thank Coach Sonja, Mikki, Stacy, Audra, and all of the RISING TIDE CREW!!!!  I could not have done this without you.  SONJA, YOU ARE A GENIUS!!! BIG THANK YOU my cheer squad/support crew of family and friends that came to the race to support me.  Your cheers meant EVERYTHING!!!  I LOVE ALL OF YOU!!!!!

Ironman post script coming soon but until then..  remember that a positive attitude is just a decision away.  Even the hardest of days can be one of the very best happy days of your life!


The butter bar doesn’t look too greasy anymore.

[Top, middle] U.S. soldiers with Company B, 1st Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment , 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, react to direct fire during a dismounted patrol in Salar, Wardak province, Afghanistan. [Bottom left] U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Keahi Holder attempts to breach a door in the compound, and [bottom right] U.S. Army 2nd Lt. William Haig delivers a situation report.

The unit was conducting operations along Highway One, which is one of the primary trade routes in Afghanistan and is targeted by extremists and criminals as a means of disrupting the populace and collecting money to fund terrorist activities.

(Photos by Spc. Alexander Naylor, 30 AUG 2013.)

anonymous asked:

I'm not sure if you're taking requests, but if you are - could you do one where Jamie and Claire take baby Faith on a trip to Castle Leoch to meet her extended family, and Laoghaire is very jealous (bonus if baby Faith is not a fan of hers)? Love your fics!

“I’m a free man now, Sassenach. I mean to walk in wi’ my wife and child and my head held high,” Jamie said as they approached Leoch. Murtagh had gone ahead.

Claire bit her tongue but held Faith a little closer.

Mrs. Fitz was in the courtyard before they could dismount.

“Ah, Murtagh said ye’d a bairn,” she squealed excitedly taking Faith from Claire. “Look at ye, wee one. Well, let’s fetch ye someat to eat. Dinna skulk about lass,” Mrs. Fitz scolded Laoghaire who wore a flushed and startled expression. Faith began fussing. “Be of use or be gone.”

“I changed my dismount from a D-value to a F-value, but I was too focused on that and I was sloppy on my other skills.
Of course I’m not happy about the results but I was able to perform this 6.8 difficulty routine for the first time in competition. Now after everything, I think it was an enjoyable Olympics.
I was extremely happy to win team gold, but I didn’t do well in the individual all-around, so I’ll keep working hard. I’ll set goals and work towards them in the next four years." 

Ryohei Kato, after the 2016 Olympic Parallel Bars final