distant paradise

Cities are smells: Acre is the smell of iodine and spices. Haifa is the smell of pine and wrinkled sheets. Moscow is the smell of vodka on ice. Cairo is the smell of mango and ginger. Beirut is the smell of the sun, sea, smoke, and lemons. Paris is the smell of fresh bread, cheese, and derivations of enchantment. Damascus is the smell of jasmine and dried fruit. Tunis is the smell of night musk and salt. Rabat is the smell of henna, incense, and honey. A city that cannot be known by its smell is unreliable. Exiles have a shared smell: the smell of longing for something else; a smell that remembers another smell. A panting, nostalgic smell that guides you, like a worn tourist map, to the smell of the original place. A smell is a memory and a setting sun. Sunset, here, is beauty rebuking the stranger.

But to love the sunset is not, as they say, one of the attributes of exile.

Memory, your personal museum, takes you into the realms of what is lost. A sesame field, a plot of lettuce, mint, a round sun that falls into the sea. What is lost grows in you and in the sunset, which grants what is distant the attributes of paradise and purges it of any defect. Whatever is lost is worshipped.

—  Mahmoud Darwish, In the Presence of Absence, trans. Sinan Antoon
Roommates (an IH/RR series of one shots)

Chapter 1: The Kiss

It shouldn’t be happening. She was the sister of his best friend. All of that escaped his mind, however, as the soft warm lips belonging to one Orihime Inoue pressed against his own. It was as if he’d gone to a distant paradise, where only Orihime and he belonged. Ichigo was so far gone he that he hadn’t heard the toilet flush from the restroom next to them, nor did they hear the door open as Orihime’s brother smirked, looking at them. “WELL,” Renji exclaimed loudly, startling the newfound lovers apart. He looked them up and down, zipping up his trousers. “It’s about damn time.” 

End

So this is an AU shortfic series based on my Sims 4 gameplay where Ichigo, Rukia, Orihime, and Renji are all roommates living together. Basically just a lot of silly situations and a way for me to get back into writing. Renji and Orihime are siblings, hope y’all don’t mind. Thank you for reading.

 Exiles have a shared smell: the smell of longing for something else; a smell that remembers another smell. A panting, nostalgic smell that guides you, like a worn tourist map, to the smell of the original place. A smell is a memory and a setting sun. Sunset, here, is beauty rebuking the stranger.

But to love the sunset is not, as they say, one of the attributes of exile.

Memory, your personal museum, takes you into the realms of what is lost. A sesame field, a plot of lettuce, mint, a round sun that falls into the sea. What is lost grows in you and in the sunset, which grants what is distant the attributes of paradise and purges it of any defect. Whatever is lost is worshipped. Yet it is not so!

Rein in place, then, with the halter of expression! Carry it, just as you carry your name, not your shadow, in your imagination, not in a suitcase! In this sunset words alone are qualified to restore what was broken in time and place and to name gods that paid no attention to you and waged their wars with primitive weapons. Words are the raw materials for building a house. Words are a homeland!

Place a moon on every willow, a girl in every window, and a gazelle at every spring! Let the poem build the southern side of nothingness. If exile pains you and does not kill you, it will take you back to the cradle of imagination. It will strengthen you and make you equal to those who stay up late to tame the obscure. Exile, a misunderstanding between existence and borders, is a fragile bridge between images. It is a test of the ability of the narcissus to be at once haughty and humble, a debate between two different entities, and the avoidance of similitude. For not everything that renounces you here will embrace you there. Not everything you resemble there will embrace you here. Leave to the imagination that which is the imagination’s: the liberty of words to obey emotions.

Mahmoud Darwish, from In the Presence of Absence, trans, by Sinan Antoon (Archipelago, 2011)

Opened @simplyimaginarypeople‘s world in CAW and playing around with things. Added the distant terrain from Island Paradise and changed a few of the textures. Oh and the lighthouse too. 

While I love St. Manolia the water routing is driving me insane. I’m going to build it up in CAW’s edit in game and eventually switch to this map. It’s smaller and the lag should be a lot better.