does this even make any sense no i do not think so

Avatar Aang, Feminist Icon?

“Who’s your favorite character?” I hear that question come up a lot over Avatar: The Last Airbender, a show particularly near and dear to me. Iroh and Toph get tossed around a lot. Zuko is very popular. Sokka has his fans. But something I’ve noticed? Aang very rarely gets the pick. When he comes up, it’s usually in that “Oh, and also…” kind of way. Which is strange, I think, considering he’s the main character, the titular airbender, of the entire show.

I never really thought much about it until a couple weeks ago when I finished my annual re-watch of the series and found myself, for the first time, specifically focused on Aang’s arc. Somehow, I never really paid that much attention to him before. I mean sure, he’s front and center in most episodes, fighting or practicing or learning big spiritual secrets, and yet, he always feels a little overshadowed. Katara takes care of the group. Sokka makes the plans. Zuko has the big, heroic Joseph Campbell journey. Aang…goofs around. He listens and follows and plays with Momo. And yes, at the end his story gets bigger and louder, but even then I feel like a lot of it dodges the spotlight. And here’s why:

Avatar casts the least traditionally-masculine hero you could possibly write as the star of a fantasy war story. Because of that, we don’t see Aang naturally for everything he is, so we look elsewhere.

To show what I mean, I want to talk about some of the show’s other characters, and I want to start with Zuko. Zuko is the hero we’re looking for. He’s tall and hot and complicated. He perseveres in the face of constant setbacks. He uses two swords and shoots fire out of his hands. He trains with a wise old man on ship decks and mountaintops. Occasionally he yells at the sky. He’s got the whole 180-degree moral turn beat for beat, right down to the scars and the sins-of-the-father confrontation scene. And if you were going into battle, some epic affair with battalions of armor-clad infantry, Zuko is the man you’d want leading the charge, Aragorn style. We love Zuko. Because Zuko does what he’s supposed to do.

Now let’s look at Katara. Katara doesn’t do what she’s supposed to do. She doesn’t care about your traditionally gender dynamics because she’s too busy fighting pirates and firebenders, planning military operations with the highest ranking generals in the Earth Kingdom, and dismantling the entire patriarchal structure of the Northern Water Tribe. Somewhere in her spare time she also manages to become one of the greatest waterbenders in the world, train the Avatar, defeat the princess of the Fire Nation in the middle of Sozin’s Comet and take care of the entire rest of the cast for an entire year living in tents and caves. Katara is a badass, and we love that.

So what about Aang? When we meet Aang, he is twelve years old. He is small and his voice hasn’t changed yet. His hobbies include dancing, baking and braiding necklaces with pink flowers. He loves animals. He doesn’t eat meat. He despises violence and spends nine tenths of every fight ducking and dodging. His only “weapon” is a blunt staff, used more for recreation than combat. Through the show, Aang receives most of his training from two young women – Katara and Toph – whom he gives absolute respect, even to the point of reverence. When he questions their instruction, it comes from a place of discomfort or anxiety, never superiority. He defers to women, young women, in matters of strategy and combat. Then he makes a joke at his own expense and goes off to feed his pet lemur.

Now there’s a perfectly reasonable explanation for all this, and it’s the one that shielded Aang from the heroic limelight in my eyes for ten years. The reasoning goes like this: Aang is a child. He has no presumptuous authority complex, no masculinity anxiety, no self-consciousness about his preferred pastimes, because he’s twelve. He’s still the hero, but he’s the prepubescent hero, the hero who can’t lead the charge himself because he’s just not old enough. The problem is, that reasoning just doesn’t hold up when you look at him in the context of the rest of the show.

Let’s look at Azula. Aside from the Avatar himself, Zuko’s sister is arguably the strongest bender in the entire show. We could debate Toph and Ozai all day, but when you look at all Azula does, the evidence is pretty damning. Let’s make a list, shall we?

Azula completely mastered lightning, the highest level firebending technique, in her spare time on a boat, under the instruction of two old women who can’t even bend.

Azula led the drill assault on Ba Sing Sae, one of the most important Fire Nation operations of the entire war, and almost succeeded in conquering the whole Earth Kingdom.

Azula then bested the Kyoshi Warriors, one of the strongest non-bender fighting groups in the entire world, successfully infiltrated the Earth Kingdom in disguise, befriended its monarch, learned of the enemy’s most secret operation, emotionally manipulated her older brother, overthrew the captain of the secret police and did conquer the Earth Kingdom, something three Fire Lords, numerous technological monstrosities, and countless generals, including her uncle, failed to do in a century.

And she did this all when she was fourteen.

That last part is easy to forget. Azula seems so much her brother’s peer, we forget she’s the same age as Katara. And that means that when we first meet Azula, she’s only a year older than Aang is at the end of the series. So to dismiss Aang’s autonomy, maturity or capability because of his age is ridiculous, understanding that he and Azula could have been in the same preschool class.

We must then accept Aang for what he truly is: the hero of the story, the leader of the charge, who repeatedly displays restraint and meekness, not because of his age, not because of his upbringing, not because of some character flaw, but because he chooses too. We clamor for strong female characters, and for excellent reason. But nobody every calls for more weak male characters. Not weak in a negative sense, but weak in a sense that he listens when heroes talk. He negotiates when heroes fight. And when heroes are sharpening their blades, planning their strategies and stringing along their hetero love interests, Aang is making jewelry, feeding Appa, and wearing that flower crown he got from a travelling band of hippies. If all Aang’s hobbies and habits were transposed onto Toph or Katara, we’d see it as a weakening of their characters. But with Aang it’s cute, because he’s a child. Only it isn’t, because he’s not.

Even in his relationship with Katara, a landmark piece of any traditional protagonist’s identity, Aang defies expectations. From the moment he wakes up in episode one, he is infatuated with the young woman who would become his oldest teacher and closest friend. Throughout season one we see many examples of his puppy love expressing itself, usually to no avail. But there’s one episode in particular that I always thought a little odd, and that’s Jet.

In Jet, Katara has an infatuation of her own. The titular vigilante outlaw sweeps her off her feet, literally, with his stunning hair, his masterful swordsmanship and his apparent selflessness. You’d think this would elicit some kind of jealousy from Aang. There’s no way he’s ignorant of what’s happening, as Sokka sarcastically refers to Jet as Katara’s boyfriend directly in Aang’s presence, and she doesn’t even dispute it. But even then, we never see any kind of rivalry manifest in Aang. Rather, he seems in full support of it. He repeatedly praises Jet, impressed by his leadership and carefree attitude. Despite his overwhelming affection for Katara, he evaluates both her and Jet on their own merits as people. There is no sense of ownership or macho competition.

Contrast this with Zuko’s reaction to a similar scenario in season three’s The Beach. Zuko goes to a party with his girlfriend, and at that party he sees her talking to another guy. His reaction? Throwing the challenger into the wall, shattering a vase, yelling at Mai, and storming out. This may seem a little extreme, but it’s also what we’d expect to an extent. Zuko is being challenged. He feels threatened in his station as a man, and he responds physically, asserting his strength and dominance as best he can.

I could go on and on. I could talk about how the first time Aang trains with a dedicated waterbending master, he tries to quit because of sexist double standards, only changing his mind after Katara’s urging. I could talk about how Aang is cast as a woman in the Fire Nation’s propaganda theatre piece bashing him and his friends. Because in a patriarchal society, the worst thing a man can be is feminine. I could talk about the only times Aang causes any kind of real destruction in the Avatar state, it’s not even him, since he doesn’t gain control of the skill until the show’s closing moments. Every time he is powerless in his own power and guilt-ridden right after, until the very end when he finally gains control, and what does he do with all that potential? He raises the rivers, and puts the fires out.

Aang isn’t what he’s supposed to be. He rejects every masculine expectation placed on his role, and in doing so he dodges center stage of his own show. It’s shocking to think about how many times I just forgot about Aang. Even at the end, when his voice has dropped and his abs have filled in, we miss it. Zuko’s coronation comes and we cheer with the crowd, psyched to see our hero crowned. Then the Fire Lord shakes his head, gestures behind him and declares “the real hero is the Avatar.” It’s like he’s talking to us. “Don’t you get it?” he asks. “Did you miss it? This is his story. But you forgot that. Because he was small. And silly. And he hated fighting. And he loved to dance. Look at him,” Zuko seems to say. “He’s your hero. Avatar Aang, defier of gender norms, champion of self-identity, feminist icon.”

Red & Blue Connection Theory

Be warned there’s gonna be Voltron s3 spoilers in here!! So if you don’t want to see that, look elsewhere. (Also this is super fucking long, I’m sorry.) 

Anyway so I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, and what with (at least temporary) Red Paladin!Lance being confirmed, now is probably the time to post this.

Coincidentally, I’ve been spending the past couple weeks looking for foreshadow of the Red and Blue Lions have some kind of Special Connection and there is quite a bit, so I thought I’d share some of what I’ve found.

The gist of it is that I think Red and Blue have some kind of connection that the other lions don’t seem to have with each other. Of course all the lions have a special bond, but there seem to be a lot of hints that the connection between Red and Blue *coughs* and their pilots is something a little different––basically, that Lance and Keith have shown a lot more interest in/connection to each other’s lions than any of the other paladins have.

(And before everyone jumps down my throat, I’m NOT proposing a permanent lion switch so jot that down lol. But I do think temporary lion switches are Good so uhhhh fight me.)

I’m not sure how to go about explaining this, but I’m just gonna break it down to:

- Keith’s connection with Blue

- Lance’s connection with Red

- What Does It Mean

Here we go!!!

Keith & Blue

- I’m still caught up on this whole “Keith sensed the Blue Lion” thing. Granted, it could have something to do with his alien abilities™ (I’m still rooting for Keith with Altean ancestry, y’all) but I still question the choice of having Keith sense Blue, of all the lions. He only detects the location of two lions in canon, and they’re––you guessed it––Blue and Red. 

First we have some kinda vague “energy” that attracts Keith to Blue:

Then we have this part where Keith just … closes his eyes and senses Red somehow??

(These both happen in the first episode, I might add.)

Like I said, this could be some kinda sixth alien sense. But, I do also wonder if it was Blue trusting & calling out to Keith specifically, which is interesting considering he’s not even her paladin.

- Also in the first episode, when they find Blue, Keith & Lance are the first ones to approach her. Keith even reaches Blue before Lance does!

And then they’re both standing right in front of Blue, side-by-side, when she wakes up.

There is still a close-up on Lance when Blue awakens––but even so, everyone else has much more of a one-on-one first interaction with their lion, so this scene in particular stands out to me.

- Other than in the first episode we don’t get much of Keith interacting with Blue in s1 (except for him saving Blue for Lance in s1e06, which is cute!)

But then there’s also this moment in s2 where he starts asking Coran about whether there might have been Galra on earth before, and whether that could have something to do with Blue being on Earth:

Which is especially interesting now that we know that Keith is part Galra. So …. is it possible the previous Blue Paladin might’ve been Galra?? or even could have been an ancestor of Keith’s?

Then of course we have Lance emerging from his room at the mention of Blue, and accusing Keith of “having his eye on the Blue Lion since day one”:

This is … kinda odd considering Keith hasn’t outwardly shown any desire to pilot Blue as far as I can remember. So, obviously this is a throwback to the very first episode in which Keith first sensed Blue––and the fact that it was brought up again out of nowhere makes me suspicious that there’s Something there that hasn’t quite been addressed yet.

Lance & Red

- *rubs hands together* Now this is Extra Fun because now I know for a fact Lance is gonna fly the Red Lion at some point in s3 because it was in the trailer and all …

:’’))

Unfortunately I don’t get to say “I told you so” because I didn’t publish this post before then, but anyway! I’ve been looking for foreshadow of this and honestly?? If you ask me, there are hints of Red Paladin!Lance since the very first episode. (Again, I’m not suggesting Lance becomes Red Paladin forever, so please don’t kill me. But I do think Lance having some kind of connection with Red has been foreshadowed.)

- So!! In the first episode I noticed that when Allura assigns each of them a lion, she doesn’t technically assign Blue to Lance (because he interrupts her, lol). It’s just kind of assumed that he’s Blue Paladin since, well, he’s flown Blue. Now, I’m not saying he’s not the Blue Paladin––he is! Buuut I also find a couple things about this scene Intriguing:

1) Lance looks like he almost expects to be assigned the lion as Allura describes it (even though he already has a lion), and then seems a bit shocked/upset when it gets assigned to Keith instead.

2) Not only that, but you may notice the Red Lion hovers between BOTH of them, which is noteworthy because this doesn’t happen to anyone else when they get their lion assigned to them. Hmmmmmm…

- This may be an unpopular opinion but I actually … also think Lance shows some Red Paladin traits. Once again, that’s not to say that Lance doesn’t also fit into the role of Blue Paladin because of course he does, but I do think he shows traces of being capable of being Red Paladin as well.

Like listen, when Allura is assigning Red, these are her exact words: “The Red Lion is temperamental and the most difficult to master. … Its pilot needs to be someone who relies more on instincts than skill alone.”

So really the only qualifications here are: 1) Be skilled. 2) Have good instincts.

And Lance?? Fits those qualifications pretty damn well. He’s a skilled pilot, sharpshooter, and strategist. And he has very strong awareness/instincts as well (i.e. being able to identify the Rover clone super fast, being able to come up with a plan on the Balmera on the fly, etc.). There’s no reason why he can’t fly Red if you ask me.

- Also, when the Red Lion gets fire power for the first time Lance is like, “I want that!!” which is interesting … especially because (at least as far as I can remember) no one else expresses jealousy for another paladin’s lion that way.

And generally I just find it kinda funny that Lance accuses Keith of having his eye on the Blue Lion when Lance has like…canonically had his eye on the Red Lion from pretty early on. 

- In addition to all of the above, there does seem to be some foreshadow about Keith getting separated from Red (at least temporarily). i.e. he has that dream about Red rejecting him.

And there’s also that vision he has in BoM where Red is far away from him.

(Tag yourself I’m the people screaming.)

Could be coincidental …. or could be intentional to foreshadow something about a certain someone else temporarily taking over as Red Paladin.

- And lastly: it may not mean anything, but in GoLion (the original anime) Isamu/Lance was Red Paladin … So, could be a nod to the original!

And yes, he wore a blue outfit but piloted the Red Lion, don’t question it. Color coordination hadn’t been invented yet. 

What Does It Mean?!

- In general, there seems to be a lot of subtle foreshadow that there is Some kind of connection between the Red and Blue lions––or at least, to an extent, Keith and Lance have connections to each other’s lions as well as their own.

- It could mean they are both capable of piloting each other’s lions. I’ll say it again––I’m not suggesting a permanent lion swap or anything along those lines, because both paladins also have very strong connections to their own lions. (Also, I’m not sure about Blue Paladin!Keith at this point, although it’s hard to say since we don’t really know what the quintessence of the Blue Lion is yet.)

However, I think in certain situations their lions could be accepting of the other’s paladin (which of course we know is possible since Keith has piloted Black before, and in the s3 trailer it appears he does so again, as well as Lance piloting Red). So, I feel like that could be important.

- As for the reason behind this connection: It could be because their elements balance each other out (you know, the whole fire-and-ice thing), but what I’m really hoping is that there is some significance in the relationship between the previous Red & Blue Paladins (interpret that however you want––but yeah like, maybe they were good friends??? or …. more than that????) and their lions built up a strong connection because of that (or vice versa).

- TL;DR: I think it’s pretty much inevitable that Red & Blue/Keith & Lance have some kind of special connection (space ranger partners™ amiright) and if you ask me there are a lot of signs pointing in that direction. That’s all, bye.

A sampling of some of the many, many universes in which Viktor Nikiforov and Yuuri Katsuki didn’t somehow manage to avoid each other for TEN+ YEARS and are already happily married (Inspired in part by the musings of @kiaronna and @pearlo on this topic from this post):

  • In 2010, Viktor is leaving an Olympic after party because it has just more or less dissolved into an orgy and that’s not Really his scene. In this universe, he decides not to go back to his room and instead finds his way to an outdoor seating area, which is not very heavily utilized given the fact that it’s February. There is only one other person out there–an athlete with his back turned, curled up onto a bench. The lettering on his jacket says Japan.
    “Mind if I join?” he asks, and the other man turns to reveal dark hair and the deepest eyes Viktor has ever seen.
    “Oh,” he squeaks. “No. Go ahead.”
    They sit, and talk, and three hours later exchange phone numbers. Instead of going to America to train, Yuuri Katsuki goes to Russia to train under Yakov Feltsman. He takes National gold in 2011 and marries Viktor in 2012.
  • Phichit accidentally posts a video of Yuuri doing a bit of Viktor’s 2013 free skate to Instagram, instead of the hamster video he meant to post. The video makes its way through the figure skating grapevine until, obviously, reaching Viktor. Viktor immediately DM’s Phichit, begging to know who the man in the video is.
    Yuuri wakes up to six missed calls, 609 Instagram notifications, 49 texts and a DM from Viktor Nikiforov.
    “I WAS ASLEEP FOR AN HOUR,” he shrieks.
    Phichit takes complete credit for their marriage in his speech at their wedding less than a year later.
  • Through the careful and judicious saving of money for several years, and because in at least one timeline the main waterline in the onsen and the transmission on the family car don’t go kaput in the same year, Yuuri’s family is able to send him to one of Yakov Feltsman’s ice skating boot camps when he is fourteen years old.
    Viktor is there, all shining hair and huge smile and new celebrity. He has just placed at the Turin Olympics and is on his way to becoming a Russian household name, and Yuuri has been in love with him for two years already.
    “Yuuri!” Viktor coos across the ice, over the heads of the fifteen other skaters in the bootcamp. “Keep your hips even! It won’t make it so hard to turn into your Axel!”
    “Yuuri! Don’t hunch your shoulders on the spread eagle!”
    “Yuuri! Your thigh should be parallel to the ice on that sitspin!”
    “He’s incredibly skilled for his age,” Lilia tells Yakov in the back of the rink one day. “And Vitya has been behaving remarkably well, since he came here.” She fixes her eyes on Yakov, deep and determined. “He’ll be old enough to make his senior debut next year. If we groom him through his last year of juniors, he could bronze in his first GPF, or better. I want him, Yasha.”
    Yakov Feltsman is not in the habit of denying his wife those few things she asks of him.
    Yuuri Katsuki returns home after that bootcamp to pack his things and collect his dog and hug his parents goodbye.
    “I’ll take good care of him, Mr. and Mrs. Katsuki,” Viktor assures from a Skype call. “He’ll be getting the best training in the world. I even have a poodle, so Vicchan won’t be lonely during the day!”
    Hiroko and Toshiya just smile knowingly.
    Yuuri Katsuki is newly fifteen when he moves to Russia and begins sharing a condo with Viktor Nikiforov. He is sixteen when he wins his first GPF silver, and eighteen when the Vancouver Olympics roll around and he stands below his best friend on the podium and accepts silver for Japan as Viktor accepts gold.
    He is nineteen when, after five years of glances and touches and shared secrets and tears and laughter, Viktor pulls him into bed.
    “About time,” is the general consensus to that.
    They have only been dating, dating-dating, for five months when Viktor asks him to marry him.
    “I know it’s quick,” Viktor says, “but I feel like–I feel like we’ve known each other all our lives, anywa, so what’s the point in waiting?”
    Yuuri, of course, feels the same way.
  • Viktor makes a split-second decision to touch up his make-up before a press conference at the Trophee de France 2011, and as he’s patting the sweat marks off his temples hears the definite sound of someone crying.
    “Um,” he announces to the otherwise silence bathroom. “Are you okay?”
    “Yeah!” comes the answer, shrill. “I’m totally fine!”
    “You don’t sound fine,” Viktor says, and ducks his head to see which stall has feet under it. In the last stall, he sees a pair of badly-abused sneakers. He straightens up and knocks on the door. “I’ll leave you alone if you want me to, but I can–if you want, I can show you a better place to cry. Than here.”
    It takes a moment, but the door opens. The man in front of him has watery eyes and puffy red cheeks and Viktor isn’t sure he has ever found someone so beautiful.
    “Okay,” he whispers, and Viktor leads him onto the roof where instead of crying, he stares out over the skyline and tells Viktor about his home town.
    Viktor never does discover why Yuuri was crying, but he does get his phone number–and he does visit his hometown with him, a year later, to tell Yuuri’s family that they’ve decided to get married.
  • Yuuri is somehow convinced by Phichit to go out with a group after Skate America in 2013–Phichit is in his element, leading people around the city with expansive gestures and the effortless social confidence Yuuri has come to know of his best friend. 
    “You’re from this city too, aren’t you?” asks someone at Yuuri’s shoulder, and Yuuri turns from Phichit’s monologue to see Viktor Nikiforov of all people. Yuuri, distantly in the back of his mind, realizes that he didn’t see Viktor before because he is wearing a hat, scarf, and enormous sunglasses.
    “Um, not from here,” Yuuri says, trying not to squeak, “but I–we both live here, Phichit and I.”
    “But you know the city,” Viktor says, “so that means you would know a place where I can get the most disgustingly greasy food imaginable and you and I can go there and my coach never needs to know?”
    “Yes,” Yuuri says immediately, because he may be timid around most people, and especially around his idol, but he has more than enough sense to realize that His Time Has Come. “I can absolutely do that.”
    Yuuri takes Viktor to American Coney Island, where they eat loose burgers and chili fries and drink diet coke, which is the only cession to their diets.
    “Oh Yuuri,” Viktor laughs at the end of the night, a speck of chili cheese still at the corner of his mouth, “I could fall in love with a man like you.”
    And he does.
  • Celestino wins a radio lottery and receives tickets to Champions on Ice in Las Vegas–he decides to take Yuuri and a rinkmate. Yuuri’s rinkmate is nice, but he doesn’t know her very well, and he’s several years younger. She also has friends in Nevada who she wants to meet up with, and Yuuri doesn’t know anybody in the state for obvious reasons. On the first day they are there, Yuuri’s rinkmate disappears with her friends and Celestino takes his wife and goes exploring on the strip. Yuuri stays in his room and plays Pokemon and Skypes his mother.
    On the second day, Yuuri goes shopping for souvenirs for Yuuko and his family, and stares far too long at the billboard of Viktor Nikiforov’s face that is advertising the ice show. That night, he debates which of the three posters he brought with him he should bring to have Viktor sign, before deciding on none–the odds that he will meet Viktor Nikiforov tonight are practically not any higher than they were when the were on opposite sides of the world, and Celestino won’t want to wait in the long autograph lines.
    “Don’t you want an autograph, Yuuri?” Celestino asks after the show, and Yuuri thinks it’s nice of him even though they both know that the polite thing to do is say no.
    “No,” Yuuri says, staring at the long line, and continues out of the building. 
    They branch off then–Celestino has dinner plans with his wife, and Yuuri’s rinkmate is meeting back up with her friends for some clubbing.
    Yuuri is walking back to the hotel when he bumps headlong into somebody’s solid chest.
    “Oh, sorry,” they say, and steady him with hands on his shoulders. Yuuri looks up and finds the same icey blue eyes frm that billboard yesterday staring back at him.
    “Oh,” Yuuri whispers, wide-eyed. “You’re–”
    “Shhh,” whispers Viktor Nikiforov, pressing a finger to his own lips. “Don’t give it away, I’m hiding. 
    “VITYA,” someone from the alley leading back towards the ice center screams.
    “Come on,” Viktor laughs, and tugs Yuuri away by the hand. 
    It’s the spring before Viktor will cut his hair, and it flies out behind him in a magnificent cascade as they run.
    They find their way into a club, where Viktor buys them drinks and laughs and laughs no matter what Yuuri is saying, and then drags him out onto the dance floor. Yuuri has not yet met Phichit Chulanont, who will drag him to pole dancing classes and teach him how to move his hips like a weapon, but he and Viktor get by in the crush of bodies, pushing against each other.
    “I think I love you,” Viktor breaths against his neck, and they’re both three sheets to the wind, but Viktor is Russian and Yuuri is a college student and their tolerance is astronomical. They aren’t even stumbling. “I know we only just met, but I think I love you.”
    “Then let’s get married,” Yuuri blurts before he can help it, and Viktor beams.
    “Yes!” he cries. “Yes, let’s do that!”
    It isn’t hard to find a place that will marry them–even though Viktor’s signature on the certificate looks more like a drawing of a tree, and even though Yuuri’s tie ends up around his forehead halfway through the ceremony.
    In the morning, Yuuri wakes up with the worst hangover of his life, fully-clothed next to Viktor Nikiforov, and says, “We can–this happens all the time, we can have it annulled.”
    Viktor stares down at the ring on his finger, tangled hair all over one shoulder. Yuuri realizes that he doesn’t even rememer where the rings came from. How much did they cost? 
    “I would rather not, if that’s okay,” Viktor murmurs, and so they don’t.
    Yuuri carries out the rest of the year in Detroit, wearing the ring around his neck on a chain and thinking about his husband, half a world away, waiting for him.
Another Rant

No, this one is not BTS related, but I can’t help myself from making this one.

I think I’m PMSing and about to start my period and that’s why I’ve been so annoyed and making rants lately.

Now, I know things can’t be 100% accurate, and I’m not directing this towards any one specific person except Stephanie Meyer since this pet peeve started with Twilight

If you are going to write about a certain topic, or include something in your writing, please do at least a minimal amount of research.

The amount of people who will write about something they know nothing about, and refuse to google it saddens me.

This goes for multiple topics.

Children/Pregnancy

As a child development major, this irks me more than it does most people, and as I said, I know things can’t be 100% accurate, and that since not everyone studies child development, there are things they can’t know, but there are somethings that’s just common sense.

Like it’s common sense that a 4 year old will not still be teething.

It’s common sense that a 2 month old will not be sitting up on their own.

It’s common sense that a 1 and a half year old will not be speaking in full grammatically correct sentences.

Onto pregnancy, why does everyone seem to think that you find out the sex of the baby on the first doctor’s appointment? Like, no. The genitalia begin to form at 6 weeks and aren’t finished until 14 weeks. The majority of people have their first appointment during that time frame, meaning it’s impossible to know anyway.

Also, morning sickness does not only happen in the morning, it’s just more common. The amount of times I’ve seen people writing fics about pregnancy, only for something to be wrong with the girl, and when someone questions her she says it’s just morning sickness, “but it’s not the morning”, please stop that.

Also, people will write about a bump at 2 months. If it’s the first pregnancy, like how it is in most fics, a bump usually won’t form until the 2nd trimester, which is 4 or 5 months. Maybe 3 months in some women, but not 2 months.

Smut

Okay, say it with me: the butt hole is not a vagina

The amount of gay smut where they talk about how “wet” the hole is getting when there is no lube or saliva involved, or the amount that says it’s painless without any lubrication. I’m a heterosexual female and even I know that’s not how it works.

Second, girls do not orgasm the same way guys do

A female orgasm is an overwhelming feeling of pleasure followed by sensitivity. There is no “flow of juices” and certainly no “white substance dripping down her thighs”. When “juices” do come out of her, that is called squirting, and only happens very rarely, some women never being able to at all. And after a women squirts, she can be very dehydrated and exhausted, and definitely not ready to go a second round, like described in quite a few fics. There are some women who can squirt quite often, however, they are in the vast minority, and therefore it should not be included in every. single. fanfic. Rarely do I see a fic that accurately describes a female orgasm.

Mental Health

This one really hits home to me, and quite a few others, as I suffer from mental illness, and have for years.

I would really appreciate if the people who don’t have a mental illness, but choose to write about it would do adequate research about the mental illness they have chosen.

I could go on about all the mistakes people have made about many mental illnesses, but I’ll focus on anxiety right now as that’s what I have and is the most common mental illness since it comes in many varieties.

The one that I notice the most is the misrepresentation of Social Anxiety.

In most of the fics I have read that have incorporated Social Anxiety, they always describe it as feeling uncomfortable around strangers, but it is way more than that.

Social Anxiety is:

constantly feeling like everyone in the room is watching you and scrutinizing your every movement

not being able to eat at someone’s house or at a party because your stomach hurts so much that the thought of food makes you want to throw up

wanting to cry when you’re forced to sit close to people you don’t know

being almost 20 years old and not being able to order for yourself at a restaurant

thinking that sitting alone in the car is a better option than having to go inside a place you’ve never been

It is so much more than being uncomfortable around people you don’t know. The feeling I get can’t even be described using the word “uncomfortable”. If you are not actually having anxiety over the situation, it is not anxiety.

Another thing that people don’t research with this is how you get diagnosed. I always see it described as they went to their normal doctor the second they started to have issues, told them they had it, and they automatically get a prescription for medication, and they’re done in 10 minutes. That is not how it happens.

I had been living with anxiety for at least 5 years before ever even going to be formally diagnosed. I didn’t bother with telling my mom I thought I needed more help than just her, who also has anxiety, until after I was tempted to remove the blades from my razor and slit my wrist to where they couldn’t sew it back up.

I had to have suicidal thoughts before realizing “woah I need help”. After that, my mom had to make an appointment at a psychological assessment center, not my regular doctor. That first appointment, it was me, my mom, and a therapist. There was no official diagnosis of that. All it was was the three of us talking, with me and my mom telling her about the struggles I had been having, how long it had been happening, how it gradually got worse, and so on. Then she gave my mom a questionnaire to fill out about what she has observed about me, and gave me one to give to one of my teachers at school to fill out.

A week later, I went back and spent two hours being tested in different ways. They varied from “what do you see when you look at this picture” to testing my memory skills. Two hours. And that wasn’t even the day I was diagnosed.

My mom and I went back a week after that to meet with the therapist, and that’s where she gave me the official diagnosis, the degree it was to, and then discussed treatment options. Then she had to send my regular doctor the results so that she could write a prescription.

It was two more weeks before my doctor got around to it and I was able to start on medication.

It is way more than “oh I’ve been feeling this way”, “okay, here’s some pills to pop”.

If you’re going to write about a mental illness without having it, then at least have the courtesy to research it.

Then comes to the idea that it can be cured and one day they won’t have it anymore. I don’t know how many fics I’ve read where it ends with a completely happy ending in the main character no longer has the mental illness.

That is complete and utter bullshit. Mental illnesses are caused by chemical imbalances in the brain, and those can’t be fixed easily. There is no “cure”, you just get to the point where you can handle it better. There are people with depression who can go years without and episode, then wake up one day with no motivation to even roll over in bed. My mom has some of the worst social anxiety, yet she’s a hair stylist, meaning she has to constantly be around and talk to people she doesn’t know. She has overcome her illness enough that it doesn’t get in the way of her job, but she’s still on medication and she almost had a panic attack when she had to walk me up on stage for the Senior Walk at my final orchestra concert.

Mental illnesses do not have a cure. You just get better at being able to live without them getting in your way.


There are a few authors and works out there that do a great job of trying to be accurate in the topics they write about, but they are sadly outnumbered by the people who just do not care.

So please, if you read this and want to write a fanfic or regular fic about a topic you’re not to sure about, please do at least a minimal amount of research before rather than bullshitting it like Stephanie Meyer did when she decided to write about vampires.

We Don't Owe you Anything

Hey there witchy community I think it’s time we had a heart to heart. I’ve been seeing a lot of disgusting behavior this past week or so and I think it’s time we all have a little refresher on how to be decent people.

If you are asking someone a question, or for help or for resources or for suggestions keep in mind you’re asking a favor.

Favors are not something you get to demand and expect out of thin air. Favors are requests. As in, you are requesting aid. This does not ensure you will receive it and nor should you expect to.

A favor is an act of kindness.
It is not a requirement.

If someone is offering help or aid as a general statement on their blog it does not mean you are entitled to that help or aid.

1. Taboo Topics
You may ask a question about a topic the blogger doesn’t want to answer. They aren’t obligated to answer you. Say you ask about animal sacrifice or cultural appropriation or sex magic. They don’t have to answer you. They don’t even have to reply to you. They don’t have to do ANYTHING they don’t want to do.

Instead phrase your question so you ask permission first. “Is it alright to ask you about sex magic on this blog?” And then WAIT FOR A REPLY before asking. Yeah, it takes a little longer but if you’re asking another person to invest their time why can’t you invest your own?

Even this question doesn’t have to be answered. They are allowed to ignore you. It is THEIR blog.

2. You Do NOT Get to Dictate Tone
Get an answer you don’t like? Tough.
If you don’t like the answer ask someone else or research on your own. If someone answers in a way you perceive to be negative or hostile either unfollow, block, or ignore it. You don’t get to tell someone how they are supposed to reply to you after you ASK THEN A FAVOR.

3. People Have Lives
Unless a blog has mods they are usually run by a single person. Usually that person has a job, is in school or both. They run their blog and help out because they want to. Their schedules and their lives exist outside this website. If an answer isn’t given as promptly as you like tough shit. Get over yourself. Ask someone else or look it up yourself.

4. Check FAQs, Abouts, Directories & Links
If you ask a question that has already been answered you’ll likely get a link to the places you should have already checked. If you’re asking someone else for their own time INVEST YOURS. CTRL+F and a 10 minute glance over is not a big deal. Do it.

5. We are Not a Search Engine
If you want to know spell compenents for “honey” use Google, use Bing use Tumblr tags… If you want a personal answer phrase the question that way.

“Have you used honey in your witchcraft before? If so what sort of spells did you use it for? Did it work out?”

Have a conversation instead of demanding a reply. If it is interesting we are more likely to enjoy answering it.

6. Ask Appropriate Questions
If someone isn’t Wiccan asking them questions about Wicca doesn’t make sense.
There is an entire tag for Wicca that you have at your disposal. If you want a person’s specific perspective on a topic ask THAT question. “How do you feel about Wicca and do you incorporate any aspects of it in your own craft?”

7. Time Sensitive is Not Absolute
Even if you have an ask that is an “emergency” or time sensitive doesn’t mean it gets priority or that it will be answered within the window. Some people compose long answers to posts and research and add sources. Some people have huge backlogs of asks. Some people only answer asks on certain days. Just because you have time restraints doesn’t mean others have them as well.

Remember that you are asking someone to help you and that they aren’t obligated to.

If you really want help being polite and kind is a lot more likely to yield results than to demand and expect.

tsundere (m)

Originally posted by nnochu

⇢ resident advisor! yoongi x reader, college au

⇢ word count: 11.2k

⇢ summary: according to the rumours, min yoongi is a bad apple- doesn’t take grades seriously, drinks as if he has two livers, a certified bad boy™. when you get paired up with him for a project, you’d never expect that someone like him would have a thing or two to teach you about life itself- and how it should be lived. 

⇢ warnings: angst, smut

🎵 song recommendation: something just like this by coldplay x the chainsmokers

a/n: finally something that isn’t pwp????? :”) 


Panic races through your veins and fills up your airway, causing your breathing to double itself, chest heaving in an attempt to calm yourself down. No, this can’t be happening, you chant to yourself over and over. The clock on your laptop is glaringly bright in the near darkness of your room, and the numbers burn themselves into the back of your eyelids. When you close your eyes, the uncomfortable stinging of your contact lenses makes your eyes water and at this point they might as well be tears of desperation.

It’s not like you’ve never had writer’s block before, you reason with yourself. You just have to start writing and edit along the way. Your own voice of reason is drowned out by the anxiety that echoes all the possible consequences of not acing this paper. It’s nearly 4 am and the essay you have so far in front of you is not enough to get an A, you know it in your bones but you can’t come up with anything better either. You could just submit this as it is, but anything less than an A on this paper would pull you down from the cusp of that ever elusive first class honours. And you can’t afford to graduate with anything less than that. The very thought of it sends a fresh chill of panic that creeps down your spine and jolts your fingers into a typing frenzy, spilling thoughts and ideas onto your screen till you reach the end of the page.

But when you read over what you’ve written, it doesn’t make sense at all, just incoherent rambling sentences strung together into a never ending paragraph. In frustration you shove your laptop away from you and push back your chair, reaching for your keys and phone. Sneaking a peek at your roommate’s still form across the room, you let yourself out of the room silently, feeling your tensed shoulders relax immediately as the cool night air embraces you with open arms.

It’s a little chilly to be out in just a long shirt and sleep shorts, but since there’s no one awake to catch you dressed like this, it’s the least of your concerns for now. The balcony that is attached to your room affords a little privacy, and it’s one of the perks of occupying the corner room on this floor. The tranquillity of the cold, autumn night directly contrasts with the millions of theories and concepts running through your mind, and any attempts at clearing your mind are failing pathetically. The residential halls are eerily silent at this time of the night, and as you glance down over the protective railings, you consider how easy it would be to just climb over, just one leg over and then-

“Late night?” You whirl around at the interruption of a raspy, gruff voice sounding from behind you. Your eyes are met with a figure clothed in an oversized sweatshirt and jeans, but it’s only when you squint in the darkness to survey his face that you realise who he is.

Keep reading

anonymous asked:

Don't get me wrong I'm SUPER EXCITED for Prompto's DLC. But everyone's like "oh no protect the bab" and I get it cause prompto is a precious bab but I'm SO READY for him to shine as a ripping badass gunner. SO READY.

^^ THIS. SO MUCH THIS. 

Ok, this turned into a bit of a long post, but I make no apologies. 

Prompto appreciation post.

Prompto is precious. He does need to be protected, but not because he’s weak. He needs to be protected because he’s lived through enough.

He’s tough as fuck. 

He’s had a really rough time of things - imagine growing up knowing you were ‘created’ to become one of the creatures/entities who are destroying the place that became your adoptive home, putting your friends’ lives at risk??? Imagine having to hide that from everyone. How exhausting is that? Never to slip up and show the signs on your skin that mark you out as ‘one of them’, even though you’re not.

On top of that, he faced and overcame isolation, and on his own he turned his life around so that it became something meaningful to him, so that he himself felt worthy of being someone’s friend. It’s not about whether he was or not to begin with, it’s about what he felt he was worth. Noct wouldn’t have cared if he was chubby or not. 

He got himself where he wanted to be through hard work and determination. Like I said, he’s tough. He grew as a person. He remained kind to his core, and sweet, and he worked hard every day to better himself.

That is why he needs to be protected. He’s already done all the hard work. He shouldn’t have to do any more. We call him ‘baby’ because he’s lovely, because he maintained his innocence and sweetness all through the difficulties he endured and overcame. He’s pretty and beautiful, with that bright smile and gentle eyes, his caring nature and lively personality. But he’s not a baby. And I think the bros all know that, and show it in their own way. He fits into the gap in their group, and they love him. 

And that’s the ‘tragedy’ of his Episode, if speculations are true. Our ‘baby’, who is in fact a total badass, has got to fight for his life. It looks like he’ll have to battle memories, MTs, and all the ‘what ifs’ from his past. We’ll see the outward manifestation of all that toughness he keeps inside. 

Prompto: he’s beautiful, he’s always been beautiful, but he is precious because of what he is and what he represents. He is an inspiration to everyone, for his hard work, his strength, his ever-present sweetness and sunshine smile, his empathy, his dorky sense of humour, for the shadows behind his smile.

Destiel, Bi!Dean and preparing the audience for a “shocker”.

I just did a re-watch of 12x10 and it really got me thinking again about Benjamin and Cas’s talk in the car with the boys about Benjamin and his female vessel.

At the time the episode aired, I think I was so excited about the prospect of Cas being in a female vessel, and how this could potentially shift a heteronormative audiences perception of Dean and Cas that I didn’t realise just what else they were trying to do.

This is about reassurance.

This is the conversation that was had in the car:

CAS: Benjamin is always very careful. Long ago, he found a powerfully devout vessel in Madrid, and her faith, it… she gave him everything – her trust and her body.

DEAN: Wait. So Benjamin’s a woman?

CAS: Benjamin is an angel. His vessel is a woman. But it – it’s – it’s more than that. She’s not just his vessel.

Just this small exchange is important as exposition for the audience. It is about preparing the audience for what is coming up. The idea that Cas was also once ‘a woman’. Which, okay, no he wasn’t a woman, he just had a female vessel, but imagine how that would have gone down had this exchange not taken place? Imagine how a general audience would have reacted to Cas and his female vessel had Benjamin just been another angel in a male vessel?

Probably a lot like the way Dean acted here, with confusion.

By giving us the Benjamin character and this particular scene as well, the writer has successfully prepared the audience for Cas in his female vessel. Preventing raised eyebrows and confusion because the audience will remember this conversation and apply it to Cas.

“Castiel is an angel, his vessel WAS a woman. His vessel is now a man, Cas is still a dude and it’s not weird. Cool beans.”

(when I think of a general audience watching SPN lets just say that I certainly don’t think of the fandom or tumblr. I think of my brother and that is something I won’t get into here. Heteronormative doesn’t even begin to cover it.)

The fact is, making one of your three main lead male characters a woman for an episode is a weird thing to do, the kind of thing that would probably make some audience members uncomfortable. So adding in this exposition, this reassurance, removes that level of discomfort, it gets them used to the idea first, like a buffer.

See for a show like SPN, whilst its always been a bit weird with its story lines, it’s never been all that progressive. As much as we would all like to wish that all SPN viewers were like us – liberal forward thinking people who are willing and eager for TV to break a few taboos – the chances are that is very much not the case. Its an old show, it has an established audience (apparently a bipartisan audience amazingly) and therefore breaking boundaries the way more modern shows have (such as American Gods, How to Get Away with Murder and Orange is the New Black) just isn’t really in the cards. Those shows established the taboo stories, the queer main characters, the representation, from the start. They built their audience on those foundations. SPN can’t do that without isolating part of its audience – unless it thinks very carefully as to how it may present such notions.

I hope I am explaining this in a way that makes sense. See this is of course about Bi!Dean and Destiel (as if anything on my blog WASN’T about those topics). Because here’s the thing. On any other, newer show, for Dean to come out as bisexual, for two male lead characters to enter into a homosexual relationship, it wouldn’t be a big deal. Those shows could build their audience around those concepts, because they would be ingrained into the show from the start.

For Supernatural, that sadly isn’t the case. SPN didn’t clearly establish Dean as Bisexual early on, and Destiel isn’t canon, it has always been the subject to interpretation with just enough ‘no homo’ so that anyone who chooses not to see it doesn’t have to (again, excluding 12x19 but we’ll get there)

One of the biggest hurdles to getting bi!dean and canon destiel, is for the SPN creators to overcome this fear that half their audience would reject them if they actually went there. It would be seen as coming ‘out of the blue’ and all those heteronormative people would raise their eyebrows and moan and be utterly confused by it.

That’s why Supernatural needs the buffers. It needs the gradual exposition, the subtle desensitisation of a general audience to anything even mildly “progressive”. If Supernatural wasn’t putting these buffers in place already, I would think we would have a problem. I would be much more apprehensive at even the idea that destiel could be a thing that is actually happening.

What is so fantastic, is that just like in 12x10 with the fem!Cas buffer that was Benjamin, we have already been getting buffers all throughout the last few seasons.

Here are some of my favourites:

  • Jesse x Cesar – 11x19 – These guys are my absolute favourite, they were created specifically to show the audience that you can be a gay man and also a macho man. That gay men aren’t stereotypes, that hunters can be gay and settle down and especially that gay romance doesn’t change the theme of the story. The big take away from this episode is that it shows the general audience that men like Dean Winchester can be gay/bisexual.
  • Hannah – 10x17 – This was a real eye opener for any Cas x Hannah shippers. Because Cas didn’t treat Hannah any different, and he had exactly the same warmth and affection for Hannah in her male vessel that he did in her female vessel. Basically this was a nice punch in the face for any homophobes watching. SPN doesn’t care about your heteronormative ships. You wanna ship Hannah x Cas? Fine! But Hannah’s in a dudes body now and guess what? Cas doesn’t care! How do you feel about THAT?
  • God is Bisexual – 11x20 – This was just a nice big fuck you to homophobes everywhere. Don’t like queer characters? This is NOT the show for you! Because in our world even GOD is queer! Yay for LGBT representation! It works as a buffer because once again it is sending a message to the general audience that this is the kind of thing you can expect on our show. We are changed now.
  • Dean rides Larry – 12x11 – Okay so maybe it’s not an obvious buffer, but it is kind of a subliminal message so I’m counting it. Dean riding that damn bull was the most sexual scene we have had on this show in seasons (and no that god awful thing that happened in 12x02 doesn’t count – nor does the same god awful thing from 12x08). The jokes alone, the sexual innuendos. This entire episode is loaded with subliminal messages basically screaming at the general audience to maybe just consider the fact that Dean likes guys.
  • 12x06/12x20 – Max Banes – like Jesse and Cesar Max works as a buffer because he is another way to get the general audience used to the idea that characters that are similar to Dean Winchester can be queer and it’s no big deal. Max is badass, funny, smart and charming and also 100% canonically queer (whether gay or bi we know textually that he is totally into dudes). Sam and Dean don’t bat an eyelid at his sexuality, so neither should the audience. It is just one part of his character and certainly not what his story is all about. Max is proof that you can have a queer character who is a badass and a hunter whose story is basically nothing to do with their sexuality. Their sexuality just happens to be a part of who they are.
  • And finally – Destiel – season 12 – I’m making this its own buffer because honestly? There is no way to view Dean and Cas’s relationship as non-romantic at this point. I think that the writers have slowly been turning up the dial on Destiel probably since 11x18. 12x19 really drummed it in for us though. The angel/human love themes of 12x10, the textual “I love you” in 12x12, the MIXTAPE and everything else about 12x19. This is all preparation. It is indeed a build up to a reveal. Destiel is it’s own buffer and even if people do still accuse it of ‘coming out of nowhere’ once it goes canon, all the writers have to do is gesture at season 12 and the fucking mixtape scene and say to those people “in what universe does the gifting of a mixtape between people who are not explicitly related NOT have romantic connotations?” Only a fool would argue with that if they had any knowledge of pop culture history. Sorry, but that’s the truth.

Anyway, that’s my thoughts on that. A show with a long established audience about to make a move that could potentially appear (but not really) out of left field would need to build up that move through a series of well thought out buffers, symbols, themes and subliminal messages before actually making it.

Like how Benjamin was the writers way of normalising Cas’s female vessel, the past two seasons have been a journey to normalise bi!dean and destiel in preparation for making both of these things explicitly canon. Yes we still have a way to go - it still needs to be stated explicitly in the text that Dean is into guys, in love with Cas bla bla bla, but we are getting there.

In summary. Destiel is endgame. Dean is bisexual. The general audience better learn to throw their heteronormative goggles in the bin because this is the state of this show right now, and it is good. 

I believe Spencer’s twin is coming.

In this post I want to give a list of reasons why Twincer is my prime suspect as AD. I know a lot of these ‘clues’ come from interviews, but they’re still really convincing for me at least. I’ve definitely missed some of the clues from within the show because they’re not as easy to spot - we need to know for sure if Twincer is happening, then we can dig further. (The fun won’t instantly stop once the finale airs.) But for now, enjoy these, and at the end, I give my theory as to the motive.

Please note: none of this is overly new. This is just the summation of everything we’ve been talking about on my blog for the past couple months. I wanted to put all the ideas into one post, rather than 31529 mini posts scattered here and there. I will be updating this as we find more. 

  1. The famous airport scene from 715.
    We all already think it’s weird that "Spencer" asked Ezra to not tell anyone he saw her there with Wren. What’s weirder, is the fact that Wren and “Spencer” were arguing. Amongst muffle, I heard Spencer say "stop calling me that" (let me know if you heard differently). Did Wren have a slip-of-the-tongue moment and call her Spencer rather than the twin’s real name?
  2. Dr. Cochran’s story is very telling.
    We all already know the ambiguous implication that Mary had more than two babies, because Dr. Cochran said he dealt with “two of Mary’s babies”. What’s more interesting is the second baby he dealt with. The first baby (Charlotte) he gave to Jessica. He said that the second baby that he delivered was placed in family county services. This could not have been Spencer, since Spencer was delivered to Veronica within 5 minutes of birth. So, who was that second baby that was placed in family services? I believe it was Spencer’s twin. Why? Dr Cochran referred to that second baby as “underweight but tenacious” - lo and behold, the next episode, Toby calls Spencer tenacious. This was the writers foreshadowing the similarities between this second baby, and Spencer. Twins. 
  3. We all know Hanna’s ‘dream’ in 701.
    It makes no sense that Hanna was able to dream ‘Spencer’ saying the name A.D. since Hanna was kidnapped before these initials were even revealed. Perhaps Hanna was visited by Twincer; the one holding her captive.
  4. A.D. needs to stand for something. 
    Spencer’s twin could literally have the initials A.D., since we know she would be Mary Drake’s child. Her first name would start with A and the D would stand for Drake. 
  5. Brendan and Ian both confessed to being confused by the identity of A.D.
    They needed the backstory to understand it. Is that because they had no idea who has the name “Alex Drake” (for example) ?
  6. Tyler said before 7B aired that “you’ve never met AD. You kind of have. You’ll know what I mean”.
    This can be interpreted in two ways: you’ve never met Twincer but since you know Spencer, you kind of know who AD is. Or. You’ve seen Twincer over the years, but thought it was Spencer. Either way, Tyler’s comment screams twin-theory to me. This could apply to any twin theory, but in this context, I’m using it for Spencer.
  7. Ian said (0:57) that “fans will be satisfied to a point. Right when it seems it’s gonna be really great, it might do a little [downwards hand motion]”….
    That cheeky smile on Ian’s face when he said “it seems it’s gonna be really great”… what could be greater than a liar being AD? Ian could be referring to the fact that they initially show us Troian under the hoodie, making us think Spencer is AD. Then, after commercial break, they will reveal it’s just her twin, hence the “it might do a little [downwards hand motion]”. We will be satisfied to a point, he said. It’ll start off amazing by thinking it’s Spencer, oh wait, it’s another twin.
  8. Ashley said (0:14) that she didn’t even know the A.D. reveal is possible.
    Because she did not expect a second pair of twins to come along?
  9. “It’s like there are two of you living in this house. You, and you’re evil twin, and we’re not sure who’s coming down to breakfast". 
    said Veronica to Spencer in 423. Foreshadowing at it’s finest.
  10. Spencer doesn’t remember this flashback.
    Was it her twin? And oh how coincidental, that the writers tell us a time Spencer doesn’t remember, in the same scene Veronica makes the above comment about Spencer’s “evil twin”.
  11. “Where are they?”
    said Mary as she entered the Hastings house (flashback from 717). Who is they? The twins? She proceeded to say that Spencer is the only good thing she’s ever made. Maybe Mary knows Spencer’s twin is evil, and is neglecting her. 
  12. “You look very much like your sister. Almost like twins”.
    said Mary to Spencer in 701. The writers wanted us to think that Mary was talking about Spencer and Melissa, since Mary was holding a picture of the half-sisters. But, were the writers, and therefore Mary, hinting towards Twincer? Is Mary being blackmailed/forced (by Peter?) to keep quiet on Twincer, and she had a slip-of-the-tongue moment here?
  13. Marlene is very aware of the Twincer theories.
    Back in 2014 she said that Troian sent her an online fan theory regarding Spencer having a twin who is A. Marlene was blown away by it and she thought it was a very well thought out plan with detailed evidence across the series. Watch from 1:35. Whilst you may be saying “there’s NO WAY Marlene spoilt her own show’s ending in an interview!!” - I feel like she had no idea the show would go on for 7 seasons, and once they got renewed, she panicked. “Shit, we need a new Uber A. Let’s go with that brilliant fan theory Troian sent me”. She probably regrets making this interview now. You can tell her passion for Twincer in this interview. She talks so damn highly of it.
  14. Marlene has said that the person who plays A.D. had known for a while.
    We know that Marlene told Troian the entire ending of the show years in advance. “Just like I had story time with Marlene, you all now get story time with Pretty Little Liars” said Troian.
  15. The girl in the coffin in the opening has the exact same black puffy shirt as Spencer.
  16. Why does it seem that A.D. is always going after the Hastings?
    Why shoot Spencer, out of all the liars? Why demand Aria to plant the audio device in the Hastings? Why not ruin the Marin household? The jealous twin wants her ungrateful sister dead, hence the shooting, and the jealous daughter is angry she never got adopted. Too much of the story is Hastings-oriented. 
  17. “They’re all some pretty. Good. Theories.”
    Was Janel’s response to being asked about the Spencer-twin theories. (22:20)
  18. And, I’ll just leave this here. Good one @prettylittlesessions​ !
  19. “Spencer’s” weird comments in 718.
    In 718 “Spencer” says to Toby “you know what its like to be the outsider. Removed from friends and family”. What made her say this? Nothing was said or done in 718 to prompt our Spencer to say this. 
  20. Keegan said there are no more Spoby kisses in 7B.
    “I can honestly say that there is not another Spoby kiss.” Yet - there was one in 718. Either Keegan lied, or that was Spencer’s twin. (10:15)
  21. “It’s somebody you have seen.”
    says Marlene in regards to who AD is. Was she talking about the Spoby kiss in 710, which Twincer referred to in 718 when she kissed Toby again? Marlene was very careful to avoid saying “it’s someone you KNOW”. We don't “know” Twincer. But, we have seen her.
  22. “That’s not the Spencer I know”
    said Toby in 718. Writers are foreshadowing.

Setting all this aside, I want to add my theory on the backstory and motive:

  • Twincer, who’s name is A_____ Drake, was born in Radley, as Dr. Cochran told us in 7A. 
  • Twincer was raised in Radley - not because she needed to be at a psychological hospital, but as a form of daycare, because Mary was deemed an unfit mother, and also she kept Twincer a secret from Peter… he already hated her (to the point of planning her murder, later on) enough for having one baby together, imagine Peter’s reaction to having twins.
  • There, Twincer met and bonded with her sister Charlotte. Charlotte became Twincer’s only friend. (Twincer might even be Bethany, since we already know of this bond between Bethany and Charlotte, and how Bethany was drawing Charles being taken away by a monster. But for this theory, let’s just forget Bethany for a second.)
  • When Mona came to Radley and started telling Charlotte about everything she did to her sister, Charlotte and Twincer wanted to play. They wanted a turn at harassing Spencer and her friends.
  • For Charlotte, as we know, it was the feeling of finally succeeding at something in life that made the game her drug. For Twincer, it was something far darker.
  • Harassing Aria, Hanna, Emily and Alison is all about driving a wedge between the girls. Twincer wants to break up the girls. Turn them against each other. Hopefully by throwing fire at the girls, they will break up, ultimately, to ruin Spencer’s life. Again, jealousy. Twincer’s plan is backfiring because it’s exactly A’s threats that makes Spencer say “we need each other more than ever” and “always stick together”. The writers keep making the point of SPENCER being the one to make the comments about “always” sticking together. Twincer cannot break Spencer and her bitches. This is fueling Twincer’s anger. Nothing is working.
  • That’s why AD/Twincer recently shot Spencer. “If I can’t break the girls up to ruin Spencer’s life, why not just become Spencer?” Twincer shot Spencer in an attempt to assume her identity and squeeze her way into the loving friendship group that she could never crack. “These girls are so loyal to each other… they don’t even break up after even my threats. Damn, I want to be a part of this. It’s my turn to live a happy life. You had your turn Spencer.”
  • Note: I do not believe that AD has been operating since season 1. Mona’s time as A is completely independent from Charlotte and Twincer’s story. Mona started the game, and now someone is ending it, and she wants to know who. Charlotte and Twincer are their own duo; their own A-team, which stemmed as a result of Mona coming to Radley. Charlotte revealed herself - next up in the A team is Twincer, who is carrying on the game she once played with her sister. 
Homestuck Beach Headcanons

John: hot sand hot sand hot sand *makes it to the water* cold water cold water cold water (this goes on for like an hour before he settles finally). Brought one of those fake shark fins and straps it to the top of his head. He fools no one. Brought approximately 53 kites and loses All of them because Dave said “hey I bet your kites can’t hold up against your windy thing”. He was right. Tells Karkat that the ocean speaks to ppl through conch shells, he holds one up to his ear, nods, “sorry Karkat, the ocean says you’re an idiot”. Karkat is horrified and John is dying trying to keep a straight face.

Dave: has a SBAHJ swimsuit and a SBAHJ surfboard. Challenges Jade to a surf-off. “Are you sure, Dave? I’ve had a lot of practice and it’s not as easy as it looks! I’ve got it, Dave reassures her. How difficult can it be. She warned u, bro. She warned u about the surf. He does not get back in the water. Fills a bucket with crabs of various shapes and sizes throughout the day, at the end he calls Karkat over to where he’s standing by the waters edge. Hey. Hey Karkat. Look what I found. He pours the crabs out at Karkat’s feet. Karkat looks unsettled. Dave. Where did you even find all these crabs Dave. They’re your children Karkat. I did this for you.

Jade: spends the whole day in the water and also she is a surf goddess did I mention that? Doesn’t put any sunscreen in and everyone is concerned but she barely even tans. After getting out of the water she does the Wet Doggo Shake™ Jade can u pls just warn us before u do that pls you’re getting us all soaking wet. Smells suspiciously like wet dog but everyone is too polite to point it out. Helps Dave collect his crabs bc she has an uncanny knack for finding them (she’s sniffing them out with her doggy nose but doesn’t tell Dave bc she wants to show off).

Rose: builds sand castles with Kanaya bc Kanaya is deadass terrified of the ocean. They surpass sandcastle tbh it’s more like a sand palace. Rose found a bunch of nice purpley shells to decorate with and also some rocks that look suspiciously arcane and vaguely powerful. High tide somehow wipes out the group’s chairs but doesn’t touch the sandcastle. Hm. Chastises Dave for building dicks out of the sand. Is there something you’d like to tell us, Dave? *Dave sweating* what’s a penis I don’t even know anyone named Karkat. Rose smiles innocently. Of course not. Throughout the day, Rose brings water for Kanaya to drink and also to dump on her so she can regulate her body temperature. Since she’s a cold-blood her body temp is lower so she overheats v easily.

Kanaya: is deadass terrified of the ocean. Does the detail work on the castle she and Rose are making, carves out little stairs and turrets and makes flags out of spare ribbon she keeps in her bag. It’s beautiful. She cries at the end of the day when they have to leave it even though they’ve taken lots of pictures. . Karkat comes up to her with a conch shell and holds it out to Kanaya, “john told me the ocean said I was an idiot Kanaya what is it saying I can’t hear anything” She takes the conch shell and listens. Mmhm. Yes. Oh My. “What did it say???” It Was Really Quite Rude, I Shouldn’t Repeat It. Karkat is about to cry. Kanaya and Rose secretly fist bump.

Karkat: oh boy this has really been A Day for him. He’s nervous around the ocean already but apparently it thinks he’s an idiot??? He loves the crabs they remind him of his lusus, it was slightly horrifying that Dave put a bunch of them in a bucket for obvious reasons. Wants to be buried in the sand, Jake helps him dig a big hole and he and Dave and Dirk all work together to make it big enough and fill it in afterwards. Dave writes “im gay” underneath Karkat’s head poking out and Karkat yells at him for taking pictures. Sollux falls asleep on his towel and Karkat writes “beefucker” on his forehead.

Terezi: before they got there everyone told Terezi not to lick the sand. Guess what she did. Also, accidentally popped the beach ball with her teeth because she was licking it. There’s a theme here can u find it. Is in the water a lot because Vriska is desperately trying to regulate her body temperature and has v little energy to say mean things which everyone is grateful for. To make her feel better, Terezi engages in wildly uncreative insults that Vriska can easily latch onto without having to put much energy in. “Hey Terezi is the water cold?” I don’t know john, is your FACE cold? “Terezi that doesn’t even make any sense”, your face doesn’t make any sense! She cackles as if this is some High Brow Humor every single time.

Jake: has an irrational fear of seagulls, they keep coming for his food and that makes him nervous because the monsters on his island were one thing but this? This sly and wily creature? Dirk is like,,,buddy,,,it’s just a seagull? It’s just a bird? “They’re eating my fries, Dirk, I won’t stand for it!” Jake has a little ukulele that he knows like five songs on, he sits outside by the boardwalk and just strums it sometimes after dark. One night, two little kids come by and give him 6 dollars in crumpled singles for his playing and he started crying he was so touched.

Jane: is having the TIME of her life, and is also the Mom friend. She’s simultaneously kicking ass at beach volleyball and reminding everyone to put on their sunscreen and reapply every two hours please! She’s also having a good time experimenting with cooking seafood some nights, though once she made the mistake of bringing in crab and Karkat did Not take it well. It took an hour to calm him down. Jane felt awful and made it up to him by buying him a nice hoodie w a happy crab on it. Bought a cute little blue boogie board and hangs out with Jade and Roxy in the water, she’s not very good at it but she likes swimming around a little.

Dirk: he’s that one friend that goes way too hard in casual games tbh. Like, they’re just playing a friendly game of volleyball Dirk can you please stop spiking it every five seconds. The grind never stops, Roxy, don’t hate the player hate the grind. Jane looked at him w so much disappointment in her eyes after he said it that he felt the force of her stare physically and had to take a step back. Tries to show Jake that seagulls aren’t scary by feeding them, but they start attacking him for his fries which does not help prove his point at all.

Roxy: “the babe” Lalonde has been ready for a beach trip her entire life. She is checking out the lifeguards, she’s checking out the other gals and dudes strolling about the beach, she’s got her best friends with her, what more could she want??? She buys a cutesy pink surfboard and Dave makes fun of her for it and she smiles sweetly. Oh sorry Dave? I forgot you were so good at surfing?? No one knows how or when Roxy learned to hang ten but THERE SHE GOES. She finds a lot of pretty shells and rocks and sand dollars and is just enthusiastic about everything tbh. She brightens everyone’s mood always.

Calliope: cherubs can’t float so Roxy’s overprotective ass won’t let her near the water unless someone is with her and making sure she’s safe. This is Fine with calliope bc that means that she’s never alone and therefore she’s never lonely and really that’s all she’s ever wanted so!! She’s v content to watch Jade and Roxy surf, she will sit w Jane sometimes when she isn’t in the water. She also likes digging for sand crabs with Karkat bc she likes their little legs. She wants to dig deep enough to find a lobster and no one has the heart to tell her that’s not how it works.

Sollux: this idiot. This boy. My sweet sweet son. Makes the horrible mistake of falling asleep on his towel. He was underneath the big umbrella when he started, but as the sun moves and he’s not putting on more sunscreen?? John, Dave, and Karkat take it upon themselves to not only write “beefucker” on his forehead, but also draw dicks on his whole body in sunscreen so he burns (trolls turn a darker shade of their blood color) and ends up with these pale gray dicks surrounded by a horrible dark, mustardy burn.

anonymous asked:

pride and prejudice wasn't written as a resistance to the patriarchy djdjfhdhsj what

i mean i’ve been staring at this message for a solid minute now pondering how to reply, trying to figure out how ro reply, but honestly it boils down to one question: have you read it?

because literally the prevalent theme of pride & prejudice as well as other works of Austen—perhaps most visibly, sense & sensibility—is the ironic social commentary on the degraded role of women, as subjected and dependent on the way of whether they would marry well as they used to be?

like, honestly, what did you think it was about? sure it has a romance in it, but it’s probably one of the the most politically designed and carried out romantical arcs in literature, as it relies not so much on mutual affection, but rather darcy aknowledging his fault of diminishing elizabeth as an intelligent human being. at first, we see him as quite obviously set upon taking her for granted and applying stereotypes; startled with her outspoken attitude and clueless as to why she would reject him. because it IS surprising, that’s the point, given the context of Austen’s novel, the commonly praised choice would be to accept not only darcy, but mr collins without another thought. what do you think is the reason mrs bennet was so distraught all the time? there was no way of securing the future of her daughters other than marriage, we hear it being repeated over and over again—they cannot inherit their father’s fortune.

and—good grief. that’s the romantic ‘main plot’ concerning darcy and elizabeth alone, because the whole point is that he changes his beliefs and acknowledges elizabeth as an equal in the end. darcy isn’t exceptional for being surly and broody, he’s exceptional because he listens and learns.

but all the rest? the whole arc of charlotte, and her unhappy and dull marriage to mr collins, and the stark contrast with elizabeth. charlotte is not WRONG, she does the only thing she knows for certain will allow her to live in a respectful way without becoming ‘a burden to her parents’. the arc of lydia, basing off her portrayal against wickham? even with all his debt, infamy and faults, wickham’s opinion is at no point more blemished than lydia’s. that’s the point, that’s reiteraring the original notion of the disparity between men and women in regency England. the radiating, stinging paternalistic attitude of mr collins towards elizabeth when he marries charlotte and TELLS her that she would probably get no better chance. his absolute belief—corresponding with darcy’s, and contrasted with the latter’s rehabilitation later on—that elizabeth has no choice but accept him.

and elizabeth herself—for all the composition and impeccable manners, she IS a controversial figure in the novel. take the scene when she’s bashed by lady catherine de bourgh, the ongoing commentary on her being too forward with her opinions, the continuous bashing coming from her mother—the lingering threat that lizzy’s ‘stubbornness’ will cause her much trouble and, above all, prevent her from securing both her and the other sisters from absolute poverty when their father dies.

and, just … of course it’s written subtly, it’s conveyed in elizabeth’s wit, in austen’s slightly ironic narrative. the problem with the situation of women is not EXPLICITLY named and stated. it’s not modern times where we’re accustomed to forward addressing of feminist issues. no: it’s shown. it is not only the consistent theme in her works, it’s the prevalent theme of them. i mean, come on, there’s tonnes and tonnes of books that were NOT written with a purpose of targeting partiarchy. fuck, there are much MORE of such books than there is of the latter kind. But to choose Pride & Prejudice specifically, a novel which became one of the most famous books in the world, renowned for e x a c t l y t h i s … i cannot comprehend. please, at least consider this: do you really think the purpose of austen writing p&p was writing a romance? really? why would it become so much of a literature landmark, then?

i don’t mean to be nasty and honestly, go and have your opinion, you’re perfectly entitled to it, but it does make me sad that a novel that is a witty, outsanding and one of a kind social commentary on the plight of women in a specific time period written by a woman IN the time period is turned into something as common as a novel with a romantic plot. that’s all.

Why Midoriya Izuku is the Best Shounen Main Character

Alright so I’m pretty guilty right now. I have a lot of things to sort out and I still unanswered asks and oh boy do I got a lot of fanfic writing to do before summer ends and I’m opening requests soon but JESUS Y’ALL. Im a huge fan of this series and I’ll be damned if I miss writing something for this boy’s birthday. I already missed writing my Inko appreciation on her birthday but I won’t let her down!

So…HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MIDORIYA IZUKU AKA BEST SHOUNEN MC

Originally posted by cruvcio

Woah, broad statement to say huh? Well, my friends, I’ve read a lot of manga, particularly shounens since that’s my more favorite genre, and I have to say that Midoriya Izuku has been the best main character I’ve ever read and I only hope he continues to grow into his beautiful character.

I mean even from the beginning of the manga, the way he was written was so completely relatable and realistic. In the very beginning of the manga, he was written to be this lonely boy who suffered through bullying and suicide comments and continuously kept going because of his obsession with heroes. From the very beginning, Horikoshi gave us this character that wasn’t perfect (rather was filled with psychological issues) and really at the bottom of the totem pole. I know a lot of people have compared Izuku with Naruto but at least Naruto was born with an incredibly gifted ability from the start. Izuku was literally born with nothing. In a society where there are heroes running rampant and where Izuku dreams about being a hero, he was literally born with all odds against him in that regard. Yet, through all the loneliness, through all the bullying, Izuku still stayed strong through all of that and continued to dream on his goal, only truly wavering once when All Might told him he should find a new dream (and even then, he still got himself almost killed but I’ll get to that in a bit).

And to add on to his realistic demeanor, I know a lot of people call Izuku a cry baby and make fun of his constant amount of crying but honestly? Imagine this: you were born a black sheep in society, everyone looks down on you, you dream of being something great but you weren’t born with the skills for it, someone you consider to be a friend looks down on you and literally tells you to go jump off a building and destroys a piece of you that you hold memorable, then you almost get killed but someone saves you, then you finally get to meet your idol, the person keeping you alive essentially and they tell you straight up that you should give up on your dream, then you’re devastated but you see that friend in a life threatening position so you literally sacrifice yourself to go save them even though you can’t do anything, and then instead of praise, you get all the blame and beaten down again while your friend gets all the praise, but then you end that EMOTIONAL DAY (keep in mind it happened within a DAY) with your idol telling you that you can be that person and he will help you achieve your dream. I won’t even go onto the other times he’s cried but honestly? I know if I was in his position, I wouldn’t have even stomached half of what happened and I’m sure most of you reading this wouldn’t be able to have a DAY like that without crying. I’m sure with 99% of you, at least once tears will shed. Izuku during his time has been through emotionally exhausting feats and I think it’s absolutely INCREDIBLE that Horikoshi gives us this raw character with RAW emotions. Through Izuku being this emotional, not only does it help us relate to him much more but it helps shows that, hey you can still be strong AND be emotional too. Emotions doesn’t equal weakness and Horikoshi really shows that tremendously, especially when the audience are a group of young ones-adults that are taught daily showing emotions is weak and you have to be strong and not show weakness because apparently crying shows weakness. With Izuku, all of that is stomped on the ground and it’s truly inspiring.

Originally posted by t0ukas

And oh boy, my favorite part of Izuku! So most shounen protagonists I have seen and come across are usually born or given this great ability suddenly and yes, while they have to train, they normally get the hang of it pretty quickly and are pretty op with it (I’m looking at you Natsu). Most of the time nakama power is enough to win the battle even though the power difference is crazy different. Yet with Izuku, it’s not like that at all. We are 145 chapters in and Izuku can only still use a small portion of One for All still and he’s gotten to the point where, because of his continuous idiotic use of One for All, he has the major consequence that if he uses it too much at 100%, he could lose FUNCTION IN HIS ARMS. OH YEA, PRETTY BIG DEAL AND CONSEQUENCE FOR THAT.

From what I just wrote, this was my favorite thing that was said:

Yes, folks, he not only says that once, not twice, but multiple times throughout the series. I think the most recent time he said it was during Episode 27 when he was climbing the walls, though I’m sure he’s said it in the future arcs and I forgot about it. Due to this new given status he was given, Izuku acknowledges that he is completely far behind from everyone else, he understands that he is at the bottom of the totem pole and that he has to work 10x harder than everyone else since he lost about 10-11 years to get used to his quirk. And throughout the series, Horikoshi doesn’t pull back on that, in fact he really drives it in that, while Izuku does become the greatest hero of all time, it doesn’t happen overnight, it takes a lot of time, training and consequences to get to that point. Even from the beginning, we were given a small glimpse of his incredible training regime and that alone just shows how much effort he has to put in and even that wasn’t enough. I won’t lie, it feels so refreshing that the Main Character isn’t some overpowered person who always gets away with his ridiculous moves, rather it’s nice that he does have consequences and that he see him actually develop into that role while he is being surrounded by others who could take that title from him.

Also, not only is he an intelligent and incredibly hard worker like holy hell, but can we talk about his personality as well? See, here is another perk about Izuku, we weren’t given some either suave person or an annoying character that makes you want to rip out your hair because they’re either too happy or too sad or too emo cringey mess. Rather, Horikoshi gave him a realist personality who thinks through, is incredibly modest and respectful, and holy fuck the most selfless character in the entire show.

I mean, we already know his intelligence and craftiness as he analyzes heroes and their moves as seen through the constant muttering he does as he watches them and his writings in his notebook

 Which might I add right now that I’m really happy Horikoshi gave him this type of analytic behavior as it makes his earlier actions have a bit more sense involved in them, like due to his constant observation he was able to use moves in combat that at least got him by in the beginning

 To also tie in with that, can I say that it is so refreshing to have a main character be a complete DORK about girls and such like that?? Like for someone who was lonely and only had much of the internet to interact with, it makes complete sense that in the beginning he’s really nervous around females or even touching them or talking to them.

Like look at how he talks to Ochako

 Or even how he reacted when Tsuyu said to put her down

Originally posted by the-friday-knight

 Or even how he reacted towards Mei when she had her chest all up in his grill.

 Not only does having this personality trait make him a total dork and cutie but it really shows that we won’t see anything super perverted on Deku’s side. Like if he’s too nervous to talk or even touch a girl in a different manner, than it really shows how respectful he is and how modest he is and how we won’t see any pervy side of Deku anytime soon, which is refreshing for an MC to be that way since most MCs have to either touch or acknowledge their love interest’s chest before they can be established as a good character.

 Though, I will say that even though those are amazing points of our birthday boy, the one personality trait of his that truly makes him a much more fitting hero than Bakugou or even Todoroki or even my baby Ochako is how incredibly SELFLESS he is. Ok ok I know that’s a common personality trait but Izuku really takes it to the max throughout the manga.

 Like when right after he was told to jump by Bakugou, his initial thoughts were based on Kacchan not wanting to get severely punished by the law


Or when he risks his life to save Bakugou from the sludge monster even though he has no quirk

Or when he risks his life once again to save Ochako even though he can’t control his quirk

 Or when he risks his life AGAIN to save All Might 

 Or when he attempts to help Ochako before her fight with Bakugou

 Or when he puts his spot in the tournament on the line to help Todoroki reconcile his fire side

 Or when he helps Iida with the Stain fight and notifies the entire class to come and help

Or when he even goes well over his power limit to save Kota and show him that heroes are good people that can hold on their own

 Or when, even though he could lose function in his GOD DAMN ARMS, he still helps the others get Bakugou back from the villains

And note guys, I didn’t even list everything. I just listed the things I could remember but there is so much more that I could have listed as well. And legit, the things I mentioned, there was no benefit in him doing that, like during the time he did them, all there were were cons for him, there was nothing positive in any of those situations for him. And yet? He still did it. He still put himself and his wishes behind to help those around him and make sure they were successful or safe, even if it meant his own life on the line. I’ve never seen other shounen protagonists push themselves this much in only 145 chapters and I think that’s absolutely incredible.

 Alright so this post is reaching to be about 2k and while I can say more about this wonderful boy, I also want to make sure that I not only post this on time but that I don’t find myself repeating the same thing over and over again. While Izuku is not my favorite character of all time, I am so happy and blessed that he is the main character of this amazing manga series. He’s grown so much since the first chapter and Horikoshi is only setting up the series more to have him grow much more and I’m excited to see how much more he grows as the series progresses. He is such a good character that is well balanced and realistic and such and I know for myself personally that I really relate to him in a lot of ways. Truth be told, it makes me actually really incredibly sad when people dismiss his reasoning for being a hero or when people just write him off as a cry baby because there’s so much more to him than just that. His reasoning to be a hero is realistic and deep enough, his emotions are realistic, his psychological issues that he faced with in the beginning shows his strength tremendously.

 Izuku is one of the best main characters and I’m so happy all of us were blessed with him on this wonderful day! Yay!!! Happy Birthday Deku!!!

 Tldr; Izuku’s face appears when you look up the definition of what a friend and a hero is.

Everything starts with a single Instagram post.

A couple lounging together on a hotel bed, their faces out of frame. Two pairs of sweatpants-clad legs tangled together - feet bruised and battered, the focal point of the image.

v-nikiforov: When you and bae have matching feet 💖💖💖 #movienight  #cuddles #figureskaters #FukuokaGPF

The internet explodes.

At 25, Viktor Nikiforov is already a notorious commitment-phobe.

Though his list of casual hookups and one-night stands is a mile long, the man has yet to have a serious romantic relationship.

(One that has been made known to the public, at least. There is, of course, no shortage of “anonymous sources” claiming to have visited him at his house in the countryside where he supposedly lives during the off-season with his secret wife and three kids.)

Not even two hours after the picture is first posted, his fans have already compiled a list of who this mysterious significant other could be, using the only thing they know (probably) for sure about them - that they’re a figure skater.

Christophe Giacometti, for some odd reason, is pretty high up on the list, despite the fact that he’s been in a committed relationship for the past two years now. Cao Bin is another notable name, along with TWO of Viktor’s own rinkmates, Georgi Popovich (something which he’s sure is going earn the two of them a good amount of light-hearted teasing from their rinkmates), and a girl named Evgenia that Viktor has known since they were 5, and whom he regards as nothing more than a good friend.

And somewhere near the middle of the list is Viktor’s longtime bitter rival, Katsuki Yuuri.

It’s something of a mystery that he had even made it onto the list, given that the vast majority of the world seems to be of the opinion that the two hate each other. But fans as a whole tend to have a strange fascination with enemies to lovers stories, and it doesn’t hurt that Yuuri is good-looking, talented, and just about the sweetest person ever (to anyone other than Viktor, that is)


By the time the next picture is posted, just over a month later, people have mostly given up hope on another.

A dining table laden with delicious, home-cooked food. A slender young man sits in a chair across the table from the camera person. The top half of his face is cut off, showing only an indulgent smile as he spoils the excitable brown poodle begging for scraps next to him.

v-nikiforov: When bae flies halfway across the world to surprise you with a home-cooked meal after you get back from Russian Nationals 😍 #luckiest manalive #loveofmylife #bestsurpriseever

This time, it doesn’t even take an hour for the fans to update their List. All the female skaters are removed, while a few more male skaters are added on. 

The man has a soft jawline and slender shoulders.

A few suggest that it may be Lee Seung Gil, while others shout that “he’s just 19!,” and how “that’s basically pedophilia!”

Katsuki Yuuri inches his way slowly up the list, while others demand that Christophe be taken off, given the man in the second picture is clean-shaven, and everyone knows Christophe wouldn’t be caught dead in public without some stubble.


There aren’t many more pictures of The Boyfriend after that.

Instead, there’s an endless flow of melodramatic selfies and black and white landscapes with captions that don’t make sense, of Viktor constantly complaining about not being able to see bae more often.

He does occasionally drop little tidbits - The Boyfriend has a dog as well, he does ballet, they’ve known each other for several years.

But he’s careful not to say anything too revealing about his significant other, playfully dodging the question whenever he’s asked about it in interviews and choosing his words carefully on his social media posts.

It’s a maddeningly long five months before Viktor finally makes the fatal mistake.

An excited brown poodle standing near a door, leash in his own mouth. His tail is a wagging blur, restless excitement seeming to roll off his image in waves.

v-nikiforov: Going to pick up bae from the airport. I think Makkachin’s somehow figured out where we’re going. He’s been waiting impatiently at the front door for the past hour. #offseasonisbestseason #beentoolong #reunion

Viktor turns off his phone after that, and so it isn’t until he arrives at the airport, only to be welcomed by a horde of screaming fans and reporters that he finally realizes the mistake he’s made.

All the blood drains from his face, and he quickly whips out his phone to send his boyfriend a warning message before he’s suddenly swamped.

His plane should have already landed by now, and Viktor prays that he’d sent the warning in time. He knows how much his lover values his privacy, and neither of them are very eager to have their relationship become public knowledge quite yet.

Viktor spends the next ten minutes trying to make his way through the overenthusiastic crowd while still trying to be as nice to his fans as possible.

Makkachin is having the time of his life, shamelessly begging ear scratches and cooing from the crowd of fangirls. He looks quite content to stay there for as long as possible.

That is, right up until he quite suddenly perks up, and barges right through the crowd, leaving behind a bunch of confused fans and a worried Viktor, trying to chase after him.

He doesn’t get very far though, before tackling someone with wet doggy kisses.

The man seems to expect the enthusiastic welcome, because he barely staggers as he catches the giant brown poodle in his arms, laughing and carrying him towards Viktor and his group of speechless fans.

He’s wearing a pair of sinfully tight skinny jeans, and a dark blue hoodie with the hood up. They can’t see his face properly yet, with Makkachin blocking their view as he continues to squirm in the mans’ embrace, tail thumping excitedly against his leg as he walks.

Before any of the fans can take a step, Viktor hurries to his lover’s side and immediately wraps an arm around his shoulders, using his body to hide the man’s identity.

“What are you doing here?” he asks urgently as the crowd surges forward to envelop them. “You could have snuck out another way and gone straight to the car!”

The man laughs, and turns to place a quick peck on Viktor’s cheek.

“It’s fine,” he says. “We’ve kept quiet long enough. I don’t mind letting everyone know about us.”

So saying, he lowers Makkachin gently to the ground, and the cameras finally get their first glimpse at the face of the man who had managed to steal the heart of the World’s Number 1 Bachelor.

Hospital Jargon (as explained by an American floor nurse)

Writing something that takes place in a hosptial? Consider this list of phrases to add a sense of realism:

HOSPITAL LIFE:

Report/ in report: When one nurse hands their patients off to another

PACU can f*ck right off until 1930, we’re in report.

Sign-Out: When one doctor/resident hands their patients off to another

*returning page* “Are they dying? I’ve barely gotten sign-out here

EPIC- Electronic charting system. Literally any electronic charting system. Does not have to be Hyperspace/supplied by the EPIC corporation to be called this.

Hey, could you put those vitals in EPIC for me since you’re already logged in?

Bed 45/46-2/47-1/48/etc…: how we refer to patients, by their bedspace number, denoted “room-bed”.

Hey Nikki, do you remember what 45-2′s blood sugar was?

Assignment: The patients any one particular medical professional has responsibility for- be they a nurse, doctor, aide, respiratory therapist, physical therapist, etc…

My assignment is rooms 43-45, how about you?

The Board: Where the status of the patients on your floor get listed, including who is to be discharged, who has certain needs, and the day’s expected admissions. Used to be a physical white board, but now is electronic. Usually used to talk about how many patients a floor is about to admit.

“Jeeze, did you see they just put four new patients on our board? We’ve already got 16- call the nursing supervisor.”

Flexed up: Taking more patients than you’re staffed for on a floor

Well, we’re staffed for 15, but they ‘found’ three more bedspaces so they’re flexing us up tonight.

Code/Call a code/They’re coding: A Code Blue. When a patient’s heart stops on The Floor and everyone shows up to practice CPR and transfer them to The Unit.

They’re coding, get a crash cart to 75-2 and call a code blue

Rapid/Call a rapid/Rapid response team: Almost a code, but their heart is still beating. For hospitals who have a separate “Rapid Response” nursing team. Two Crit Care nurses show up and handle things. Also who you call if you and everyone else on your floor can’t get an IV.

They have an INR of 9.5 and the doc doesn’t want to do anything- I’m gonna call a rapid.

Float/they’re floating you: When you don’t have enough patients on your floor so the nursing supervisor sends you to a different, unfamiliar one.

They’re making me float to 9C. Again. Can you believe that??

Full: Can’t take any more patients, either due to physical space or nursing staff.

Tell the nursing supervisor to stop putting patients on our board- we’re full

Clinic: Outpatient. Where you want your patients to be.

Tell them we’ll see them in Clinic in three days. They have no medical need to be here anymore and they know it.

KINDS OF PATIENTS:

Contacts/isolations: Any patients who’s rooms you have to don a gown, gloves, mask, and/or respirator to enter.

Are you sh*tting me? I have five patients today and four of them are isolations.

Frequent flyer- Someone who, for medical or social reasons, just can’t seem to stay out of the hospital

Did you hear Darlene is back?” “Yeah, we’re officially engraving her name on the Frequent Flyer wall of fame

Crump/Crumpy/Crumper: Colloquial term for patients who are medically unstable/at a lower level of care than they need/will be transferred to The Unit when a bed becomes available or when the inevitably code, whichever comes first.

73′s a crumper if I’ve ever seen one. Rapid’s in there working her now.

‘Seeker: Someone in the hospital with their own agenda, but who largely has no medical need to be there and will threaten to sign out AMA (even though they’ve been discharged four times and keep refusing to go) if they don’t get what they want- be it drugs, social interaction, or over-the-top waitressing. Will probably threaten to give a horrible review of the hospital on their social media platform of choice and mention you by name if they don’t get what they want.

49′s a total seeker. When she’s not begging for pain meds, you’re getting her crackers, juice, tea, hot packs, cold packs, everything you could think of. I didn’t sit down all night and my other patients slept pretty much the whole night. Give her some percocet and get her the hell out of here before I have to deal with her again tonight.

Heavy: A patient that takes up a disproportionate amount of your time, but usually for a legitimate reason.

Dr. P’s patients are really heavy. Something’s always going on with them and they have tubes coming out of everywhere that need care of some kind every hour… I had two of his patients today and I’m so tired… could we break up the assignment for the next shift please?

HOSPITAL PLACES:

The Floor: Medical and Surgical floors, sometimes specialty floors- basically anywhere that’s not the ED, Psych, or The Unit. These have higher staffing ratios (more patients per nurse) and lower patient acuity than The Unit

They didn’t really need a bed on the Unit so they were transferred to the Floor

The Unit: The Intensive Care Unit. Where crumpy patients go, comes in the following flavors (though smaller hospitals may have just one): MICU (medical), SICU (surgical), PICU (pediatric), TICU (trauma), NICU (neonatal), NICU (neurological), BICU (burn), and Stepdown (in the days after an ICU discharge).

They weren’t doing so hot, so we called a rapid and had them sent to The Unit.

The ED: The Emergency Department. Oh dear lord it is not called the ER.

They’re sending up that new admit from the ED in like 5 mins, do you have the room ready?

PACU: Post Anesthesia Care Unit, where people are stabilized after surgery.

PACU’s calling again, they’re backing up and need to give report.” 

THE NURSING HIERARCHY:

Director of Nursing: One Nurse to rule them all. Directs all facets of nursing, from training to hiring to staffing to quality improvement.

Nursing Supervisor: One nurse to rule them all… on a given shift. The nursing supervisor assigns patients to nursing units and makes sure everywhere is staffed accordingly.

Nurse Manager: In charge of the general staffing and personnel management of a particular floor, including scheduling, patient satisfaction, staff development, and service recovery.

Charge Nurse/Charge: The “shift manager” of nursing. Has final say on a lot of things you don’t want to be the bad guy on, as well as creating assignments/checking the crash cart, and submitting service requests when the nurse manager isn’t there. Also has a patient assignment.

Staff nurse: The nurses who do assessments, pass meds, start IVs, carry out orders, give updates to doc’s, chart, manage a patient’s day, make sure they get to tests/procedures on time with the right paperwork, and are overall responsible for managing patient care and providing first-line response to issues that arise throughout the shift.

Nurse Aide/Nurse Tech: Provides the majority of basic patient care. Counts intake and output, gets blood sugars and vital signs, sets up rooms for new admits, cleans and clothes patients, gets blood and urine samples, transports patients if necessary. Staff nurses are responsible for this when aides/techs are not available.

Would someone please add the Medical Hierarchy if you know it? I don’t feel I know it well enough to do it justice. Thanks!

the spy au that @philosophium ordered !!


Andrew slips through a slit in the crowd, brushing through the sleek trains of expensive gowns, rich wool suits jackets catching on his own. He’s on his second flute of champagne, and the tartness keeps him focused. His attention is on the flavour and the rim of the glass and the warp of faces through it. His earpiece crackles and whispers.

He can see his mark on the opposite side of the room, surrounded by servers and liars and pretty things. One of them is all three, Andrew can tell: a waiter’s vest, a seam of over-applied foundation, and bright blue eyes.

He’s distracting, flighty, a rubber band pulled all the way back. He looks like the memory of a case file, and a name occurs to Andrew one second before Kevin hisses it into his ear.

“It’s fuckin’ Charlie Pilot. Don’t engage, Minyard, we’re not here for him.”

Andrew doesn’t make any effort to reply, just takes another pull of champagne. He’s not really watching the troupes of entertainers or the clockwork security or the velvet and silk blooming under bowing chandeliers. He’s not even watching the man he’s either going to rob or kill, who’s laughing and weedy, red in the face from the alcohol. He’s stuck on Pilot –  next to his target, holding a heavily stocked tray of appetizers, his expression pleasant and empty.

He’ll be an irritant to what should be a straightforward plan, if he keeps hovering. Andrew takes a loaded step forward and the voice in his ear complains.

“Don’t even think about moving in until Pilot leaves. He’s probably doing reconnaissance for Matt. I bet he doesn’t even know about the file.”

Andrew watches Pilot’s face tick, the way he blinks like he’s on a timer, the way he’s worrying the inside of his cheek with his teeth.

“I bet he does,” Andrew murmurs, and he drains the last of the champagne. He plucks his tie pin away from the fabric and drops it in the empty glass, leaving it on a passing tray.

“What— what the fuck Minyard, we’ve lost visuals. Do you hear me? Andrew? Andrew?”

Andrew weaves through the rest of the golden crowd, ignoring the buzz of Kevin’s reprimands in his ear. He finds a new spot on the outskirts of the crowd where Pilot has installed himself.

“Do you know how fucking expensive those cameras are? You’re such a piece of shit operative,” Kevin says. “When you inevitably come back without the intelligence and without our equipment, it’s costing us to keep you around, do you realize that?”

Andrew’s more focused on the way Pilot’s shoulders are turning to face him, the slim line of his tailored pants, that eyelash-thick smudge of un-blended make up.

“Shrimp?” Pilot offers, swaying the tray in his direction.

“No,” Andrew says, but he stays uncomfortably near, feeling along the edges of his boundaries without finding any seams. Pilot’s composure is still and reserved as a frost-ravaged garden.

“Have a good evening then,” Pilot says graciously, turning back towards the host that Andrew should be sizing up but hasn’t even looked at. He glances at him for a sliver of a moment, finds himself uninterested, and looks back at Pilot.

Andrew catches him suddenly by the arm, but relaxes his grip just as quickly, caught off guard by his own impulsivity. His own disguise is just an invitation and sun bleached hair; he isn’t playing a character like Pilot is. He’s neutral for a living, but Pilot is a new weight on his scale, unbalancing him so that he can’t quite settle at zero.

When their eyes meet, the polite, curious waiter snips out of existence. Charlie Pilot stares at Andrew, with eyes like the bluest part of a fire.

“There’s a conflict of interest,” he tells Andrew calmly. “And your interest will lose.”

“I’m not interested in anything,” Andrew says broadly.

“Hm,” Pilot says, unconvinced. “You’re lying.”

“I don’t lie,” Andrew says. He’s always saying it; it’s a novelty that employers enjoy and enemies challenge, amused.

Pilot raises his jaw, mouth twitching. “No, you wouldn’t, would you.” His eyes flicker to the side of Andrew’s face, where Kevin is breathing furiously through his earpiece, then down to the grip he still has on his forearm. He lowers his tray down until the rough edge is pressed to the root of Andrew’s hand threateningly. “You’ll want to let me go, Andrew, or you’re going to end up needing a longer armband.”

Andrew feels genuine surprise squeeze his fingers around Pilot’s wrist. He hadn’t noticed the black fabric extending a whiff beyond his crisp white sleeve. He lets go, and Pilot tucks his shoulders back, satisfied. His hair is too dark to match his freckles, Andrew notes quietly. It is, perhaps, what the make up was meant to cover up.

“You are not going to win, Charlie,” Andrew says. “We’re the more capable team.”

Pilot smiles indulgently. “‘Charlie’,” he repeats, mouth curling around the name. “It’s been a long time since I’ve been Charlie Pilot.” He jostles his tray from one hand to another, and loosens his collar with his freed hand. “And I don’t think you understand how much farther ahead we are than you. If you’re looking for information, we already have it. If you’re trying to find the connections this place has to the Yakuza, we’re the ones undoing them.”

“Who’s we? I don’t remember seeing anything about loyalty in your case file. You’re just a runner.”

Pilot looks briefly bothered by this, and he juts his chin again. “I’m loyal to whoever’s doing the work that needs to be done.”

“That doesn’t answer my question. Who are you?”

He looks down, at Andrew’s empty hands, at the hip where he’s hiding his gun. His expression is warped and sad when he looks up, like the real filling in his strange costume is finally oozing out.

“You can call me Neil,” he says, and drops the whole tray of food so that it clatters and rolls into the host’s feet. There are gasps and yelps, partygoers dodging and stooping to catch the runaway platter. Andrew looks impulsively down to track its progress, and when he looks sharply back up into the knot of activity, Neil is gone. Of course he is.

He doesn’t have time to think about where he might have disappeared to, just steps neatly into the opportunity that’s been afforded to him. He uses the distraction as a doorway directly into the offices behind the coddled host.

Kevin is asking repeatedly for updates, and Andrew fishes the earpiece out and tucks it into his breast pocket. He likes to be alone for this part, when the most important door closes behind him and everything makes as much sense as a ticking clock.

He keeps thinking of Neil’s reaction to ‘runner’, of the vulnerability trussed up in his persona. He finds himself sick to his stomach wanting to know what his real hair colour is.

He tries every door in the polished row of them, finding all of them locked. He picks the lock on the door farthest from the burble of the ballroom behind him, and cracks into what looks like a room built for business arrangements and drinking. There’s a snifter next to a half dozen tumblers on a cart along the wall, and extensive cabinets under the desk.

He feels his way along the underside of the desk, and opens each drawer, idealistically left unlocked and unprotected. He finds useless information and shady information and heaps of anonymous, unlabeled tapes.

He finds the safe in the floor, facing up patiently under a wingback chair and a panel of floorboard. He stoops so that he’s face to face with it, shrugs his jacket off like a dead skin onto the floor, and puts the heart of a stethoscope to the face of the safe.

He’s sweating, spread out surreptitiously on the floor, but the safe is flimsy. It cracks in under an hour, the party wilting two rooms over, pressure taking him by the hair. Andrew flicks the door open impatiently, unwinding the stethoscope from around his neck.

It’s filled top to bottom with paper, and he reaches for the first file, carding his fingers through the spill of sheets.

Got you, it says. Over and over again, in unassuming little typescript. And on the next page, got you.

Andrew’s fingers flex. The next file is the same, and the next. A million taunting, twirling repetitions: got you. Got this. Got here first.

The safe was already cracked. The list of names was already stolen. Neil’s face winks and swarms when he closes his eyes, furious. If you’re looking for information, we already have it.

He roots around for the bud in his pocket and pops it back into his ear. He leans back, splayed away from the spill from the safe, the stacks of failure. He enunciates clearly into the microphone sewn into his collar.

“We have to find Neil.”

Keep reading

Writing Antagonists: (Aka, Your Villains and Bad Guys)

The antagonist is often either one of the most fun things to write, or the most dreaded. But either way, they are a key element of the story, and that cannot be ignored. So, let’s talk about how to make a really great antagonist.

You may have in the past met a writer or teacher or whomever who insists on using the words “protagonist and antagonist” over words like “hero and villain.” Personally, I am not so stingy about it, I feel that I know what you mean anyway so it doesn’t really matter- what there is a legitimate reason as to why you should at least try to think of your villain as your antagonist instead.

And that reason is connotation. Well, denotation too, really- villain and antagonist aren’t completely the same thing, but I’m bringing it down to connotation. 

Simply said, when you think of the word “villain”, you’ll think something like “that’s the bad guy in the story.” And when you think of the “antagonist”, you probably think “that’s a fancy word for villain, aka the bad guy in the story.”

But antagonist isn’t just a fancy word. It’s a fancy concept. It means “the guy that opposes the good guy.” That can be on any argument or view. When writing your antagonist is to remember that nothing is black/white, good/bad thinking, and that includes your antagonist.

Let’s map out the steps to making a complex villain- aka, an antagonist.

First, remember that your antagonist (usually) is a person, just like your protagonist. It might help to develop them outside of their intentions first, and put a person to the upcoming reputation.

Background:

Chances are, your antagonist didn’t just rise up out of the ground ready to kill. They came from somewhere. Your readers don’t even have to know everything about your antag’s backstory, but you do, if you want to really understand them. It often holds the key reason as to why your antagonist is where they are. The drive behind anger, revenge, change, or pleasing someone else can come from the events in their background.

Why do they hold the beliefs they hold? Were they raised that way? Were they taught by some mentor figure? Were they cover from a reality they couldn’t bear? Are they trying to please someone, or get revenge on someone who displeased them? The answer should be in their background.

Motives/Beliefs:

Remember, every villain is a hero in their own mind. They believe that what they are doing is necessary, even if they recognize that it is unpleasant. What are they fighting for? Why does it matter to them so much, that they are willing to overlook all the harm they do?

“The Greater Good”: This is one of the more common and understandable villain motives. They believe that what they are doing now is paving the way to a better future. But keep in mind that what your antag views as a “better future” may be very, very different than the average opinion. Maybe a “better future” for them is a genocidal purge or the world ending in flames. Who knows.

That’s not the only type of motive. Be creative. Work with the information you established in your character’s background to find the most reasonable motive.

Tipping Point:

This is going to be related to your background and motive in an interesting way. Think of your antagonist as a character who has already completed their Character Arc and reached a negative end. Look at the points of change on the character arc- the ones that push your character farther down their path. What are those events? Those are the tipping points that prompted your character towards becoming they way they are now- those key moments where your character had a choice, and they chose to become bitter, hateful, vengeful, cold, or other negative things.

These could be the deaths of loved ones, the promptings of a mentor, or a moment of injustice that made them realize that the world isn’t always kind.

Personality/Actions:

This is the part where you develop them outside of their intentions. How do they behave? 

It’s tempting to just say that your villain is a villain because they torture and kill people. But those are not the only things that make a villain a scary or serious threat. Some characters might jump to violence easier than others. Some might be more into psychological torment. Some might actually seem really charming or persuasive, which is frightening in it’s own way- they might actually be tricky enough to confuse you into making bad decisions on your own. Think about your character’s background again. What makes the most sense for them as a person?

Presentation:

This is how your antagonist comes across to others. Keep in mind that your reader and your other characters don’t know your antagonist like you do. How does this person present to the world? 

-Are they open to discussion/negotiation?

-Are they open about their intentions?

-How quick are they to violence?

-What are their methods of war?

-When you meet them, are they charismatic, quiet, charming, vulgar? Do they have a sense of humor, or are they stoic?

-Do they seem to enjoy what they are doing, or do they express regrets even as they do it?

Moral Complexity:

What are they willing to do to achieve their goals? Do they have weaknesses in their personal lives?

1. Do they have noble ends behind their controversial means?

2. Is there a line even they won’t cross?

3. Do they have someone/something that they care about?

4. Do they prefer to do the killing/torturing etc themselves or do they just give the order?

Remember that if your antagonist does have any of these moral weaknesses, they are not going to want to show it. One has to keep up intimidating appearances, after all. 

Speaking of appearances…

Appearance:

This part is here to tell you what not to do. There are certain appearances that are getting really old with villains.

1. Dressing in all black. Why do they even do that? It’s time to stop associating black with “bad” and white with “good”. It just isn’t like that, so stop making villains all dark and stuff.

2. Scars. I think scars are pretty cool, don’t get me wrong. But if there is no relevant reason for it to be there, don’t talk about it all the time. That goes for all characters, not just villains. Like the color black, scars are not just a villain thing. Everyone has them. Don’t associate them with “bad.”

3. Sexy. I get the idea that making a villain attractive makes them harder to hate, but that can be kind of a cop out of actual complexity. Again, if there is no legitimate reason to make your villain sexy, then don’t. It’s not necessary.

4. Ugly. I hesitate to call any traits inherently ugly, but if you’re striving to make your character unpleasant looking just because they’re bad, then once again, you are associating feature=evil, which is not creative at best and seriously socially harmful at worst. 

Basically, your villains should be just as diverse as anyone else. You don’t need stereotypes to make them scary. Sometimes it’s scarier than anything else to just have an average person. It sort of adds to the idea that anyone could be a villain. And that’s pretty frightening.

Key Point:

- Complicate your villains. They’re not just Evil McEvilpants. 

That’s it for now, but like anything else in writing, antagonists have a lot of possibility and exceptions. But that was your basic rundown on the things to consider when making a complicated antagonist. 

~Penemue

I’ve gotten quite a few asks recently wanting to know what my issue with Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition is. You’ve probably seen my grumbling about edition-warring a time or three, so I want to clarify that that isn’t where this post is going. I think 5E has a lot of fantastic ideas, and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it to new players. The problem I have with it isn’t that I don’t like what it’s doing; it’s that I see a lot of great game design ideas lumbered by a conscious refusal to take them to their logical conclusion - or, in other words, it’s not that I think 5E goes too far, it’s that I think it doesn’t go far enough.

(Fair warning: a lot of this is going to be really jargon-heavy game design stuff that normal people probably don’t care about. That’s your cue to check out if tabletop RPG meta isn’t your cup of tea!)

To start off, there’s a concept in game design - applicable to both video games and tabletop games - called “mechanical engagement”. Basically, it’s what it sounds like: how and when the player is called upon to make rules-based decisions. Some games have high mechanical engagement, in the sense that players are given lots of rules-based “toys” to play with and expected to interact with them frequently; other games have low mechanical engagement, meaning that there are fewer rules-based “toys”, and fewer player-facing decisions about how to deploy them.

Moreover, in games that have roles or classes, different roles within the same game can offer different levels of mechanical engagement. It’s tempting to think of this in terms of low mechanical engagement = basic and low-powered, high mechanical engagement = advanced and high-powered, but this ain’t necessarily the case; you can see this phenomenon in action in the sphere of video games in, say, 2D fighters, or multiplayer online shooters. You have characters/roles with complicated and demanding execution, and characters/roles with simple and straightforward execution, and the former aren’t necessarily more powerful in practice, in spite of being more demanding to play.

The reason this happens is because a player’s preferred level of mechanical engagement is totally independent of any other axis of play (e.g., preferred role, preferred aesthetics, etc.) Some players like having lots of rules-based knobs and levers to play with, and they’ll gravitate to roles that will give them that even if there’s no actual benefit - i.e., even if it obliges them to work harder just to get to the same level as players in roles with lower mechanical engagement. Similarly, some players just want to press buttons and watch stuff explode - they prefer low mechanical engagement.

There’s nothing wrong with either preference, and one of the major perks of playing a tabletop RPG with class/role-based character creation is that it allows you to accommodate different preferences in terms of mechanical engagement within the same party. You can have players who want to juggle lists of special abilities as long as their arm, and players who just want to hit things with swords, and they can play at the same table - everybody wins. Again, remember that this is totally separate from wanting to play a “low powered” or “high powered” character; the level of mechanical engagement that a role demands is a different axis from how big its numbers are.

Now, one of the perennial issues of fantasy tabletop RPGs in general and D&D in particular is tying particular levels of mechanical engagement to particular role aesthetics. In many iterations of the game, if you want to play a role with high mechanical engagement, you have to chuck fireballs, and if you want to play a role with low mechanical engagement, you have to be a sword-slinging meat shield. A player who wants high mechanical engagement but also likes swords is liable to be told, both by the game’s text and by other players, that she’s Doing It Wrong - and so, for that matter, is a player who wants low mechanical engagement, but also wants to set stuff on fire with her brain.

(Incidentally, this is one of several areas where core-book 4E solves a real and recognised problem in the most hilariously unsubtle manner imaginable, by bashing every role into exactly the same level of mechanical engagement. Which is fantastic if that just happens to be your preferred keel, because now you can play and enjoy every role - and terrible if your ideal toybox is too much larger or smaller, because now every role is an equally bad fit for you.)

5E brings a couple of great ideas for solving this problem to the table:

1. It introduces a series of “tutorial levels”, where each class‘s abilities are introduced gradually over the levels 1-3, reducing entry barriers, leveling out the learning curve, and allowing folks to “try on” different levels of mechanical engagement more easily; and

2. It introduces system of templated archetypes whereby particular classes/roles can be “tuned” to different levels of mechanical engagement, making the same basic set of roles accessible to players with a broader range of preferences in terms of mechanical engagement - and, critically, the choice of template doesn’t have to be made until after the previously mentioned “tutorial levels” are complete.

Sounds great, right?

The problem is, it only applies to fighters and rogues and related classes. Clerics and wizards - i.e., the full-featured spellcasters - don’t get any “tutorial levels”, are obliged to choose their archetypes at first level, and all of their archetypes are about equally complicated - to the point that, for example, the lowest mechanical engagement cleric you can build has more rules-based toys you’re obliged to wrangle at any given level than the highest mechanical engagement fighter.

In other words, the game turns around and goes some distance out of its way to reinforce the very problem that this design pattern is meant to solve!

This pattern is repeated in several other places. For example, one of the long-standing disagreements among the fandom is whether D&D should primarily support epic, globe-trotting “high fantasy” or gritty, street-level “low fantasy” as its default tone. It’s as much a question of rules as it is of flavour text, so it’s hard to do both - but 5E gives it the old college try, which is a frankly fascinating decision. How does that play out?

Unconventionally, 5E does it based on character classes: you literally have some classes that are built out of high fantasy tropes, and some classes that are built out of low fantasy tropes, with the result that you can have characters who basically hail from totally different genres of fantasy fiction running around in the same party. This isn’t necessarily a bad idea; there are lots of inspirational sources that setup could describe - I mean, just look at The Lord of the Rings. If that’s not a prototypical case of high fantasy characters and low fantasy characters partying up, I’ll eat my hat.

This’d be another great opportunity for the archetype system to shine - but again, we see this obnoxious wall slamming down between “martial” and “magic” classes. This time it goes the other way: fighters and rogues default to low fantasy genre assumptions, and have access to archetype templates that can dial them up to high fantasy - but clerics and wizards default to high fantasy and don’t get anything to adjust that.

Tellingly, the high fantasy archetypes for fighters and rogues basically operate by bolting half a wizard to the side of their respective classes. You end up with a strange dynamic where some characters from a given piece of genre source material are valid inspirations, but not others - e.g., you can be Merlin, but not Lancelot; Gandalf, but not Legolas; Medea, but not Achilles. Again, we see this reactionary notion that only spellcasters are allowed to play in the big-kid sandbox; the game’s text openly acknowledges as much by flat-out stating that only full-progression spellcasters are relevant when determining which tiers of play a party can engage with. And again, the tools to fix that are right there; the game just doesn’t deign to pick them up and use them.

I could keep going, but I suspect I’ve harped on long enough that y’all get exactly where I’m coming from here. It’s like… these are not new problems. Maybe not all players care about them, but it’s nearly universally acknowledged that they exist, and it would have taken so little effort to address them - the game literally developed the perfect tools to do so, then didn’t use them. It drives me crazy to see a game come so close to what could have been a legitimately revolutionary take on the genre, then deliberately stop juuuuust short of the goal line.

My Thoughts on Why the Hetalia Fandom is Failing

A lot of people, including myself before have claimed that this fandom is ‘dying’. My opinion has changed since joining tumblr.  I don’t think that things are that bad just yet because people are still very much in the fandom.

The problem is that we aren’t very active. This is what I’ve noticed so far.

1)      The Popular Blogs Aren’t Active: To have and keep your fans, you need to make consistent material, rather than posting occasionally. It’s what makes people excited and inspires them to create their own content. Even if it’s just one post a day, it’s still really important to post (if you can, of course), as it maintains people’s interest. Especially when you have such a large platform of followers!

Don’t get me wrong, there are some amazing Hetalia blogs that post several times everyday, and I’m always looking for new ones to follow!

2)      Not All Fanart Is Equal: Another thing about our fandom is that new artists aren’t given a chance to thrive. There are amazing new artists out there, but people only reblog the work from the popular blogs. Why not all?  If you see great content, reblog it regardless of how much attention that blog has received.

3)      Reblog Reblog Reblog: Reblog everything, friends. The more you reblog, the more people see content and want to get into it. Simple!

 4)      Fanfiction: The fanfiction community hardly has any responses nowadays, in comparison to what it used to be. Fanfic authors spend hours of their spare time for free to create stories for you to read and enjoy. It’s so important to follow, favourite, and review. Most of the time, authors reach out and post material to connect with their audience (as is with artists too). If there aren’t any responses, then they aren’t going to bother posting.  Good Fics have gotten a lot of people through some tough times, so I would hate to see that part of the community die out.

 If you have an account, support the stories you read. It makes no sense not to, and any comment, no matter how short, means the world to them. It doesn’t take you nearly as much time to support a story as it does to create one. Don’t be lazy if you’re a reader – the stories aren’t going to create themselves, they need encouragement and praise to continue :)

5)      SUPPORT ALL CONTENT: All art, stories, head canons, RPG’s, RPs, and anything else in this crazy fandom needs to be supported. If you love the fandom and want it to thrive, support is your greatest tool to make it happen.

I know some people are going to think I’m being melodramatic by writing this. Or perhaps I care too much. Still, I think the Hetalia fandom deserves better. Sure, there’s some really freaky content, but we’re a bunch of history nerds and weirdos anyways, so whatever, as long as you’re not being offensive.

This is the one fandom that I haven’t ever gotten bored with. The concept of countries being personified is just so ripe with creativity and potential. There is so much you can do with the large list of cast members, i.e. the mecca of ships and AUs. We’ve created a ton of content thus far, so why stop now?

We’re a community, so don’t you think we should start acting like it by becoming active again and supporting each other? The fact that we trended last week makes this even more possible!

Hasta la Pasta, let’s make Hetalia awesome again!

Reblog if you agree :)

saved

anonymous asked: Can you do a fic like the clock tower one where reader falls off a building or something a peter is trapped and he just watches her fall, he thinks shes dead, gets beat up by the villian of choice since hes depressed and shit,,, but little does he know Tony Stark saved her? (and please, can reader not be an avenger or starks daughter, just a regular teenage girl who knows and has a relationship with stark based through peter??) sorry if that made no sense?

author’s note: this probably isn’t what you wanted but i tried my best so thank you for requesting lovely! Xx

i listened to this while writing this :)


The fight between Peter and the vulture had been going on for quite some time now and neither one of them was close to winning or losing. It had first started in an alleyway which had soon let out too a rooftop on top of one of the tallest building in Queens.

The vulture had tried to shoot at Peter with one of the guns he had but Peter had managed too dodge every single one off the shots being aimed at him, and he carelessly shot his web out from his arm ripping the weapon away from the winged man so it flew off the rooftop and landed on the sidewalk below it shattering it into multiple pieces.

This seemed to have infuriated the man as he now came flying towards Peter at an unearthly speed. Peter only managing last minute to jump over him and land on the building completely unharmed.

But the door that lead onto the rooftop suddenly flung open distracting Peter so much that in the few seconds he had turned to look at it the vulture had managed to grab him by his neck and slam him down onto the ground below them.

He then started throwing Peter around like a rag doll until he was soon almost too weak to stand on his own two feet. He had blood dripping down from his lower lip and his face was covered in bruises and scars.

The both off them had been to distracted to notice you when you had walked onto the rooftop and you had been standing there for a solid five minutes watching your boyfriend get beat up and you had no idea what the hell you were going to do.

But when you saw the vulture come towards Peter’s bruised body again you panicked and not knowing what else to do you did the first thing that came into your mind. So you cried out a desperate “stop!” gaining both of the mens attention.

Peter had let out a strangled no as he prayed to god the man wouldn’t try to use you against him but as he now came towards you Peter tried his best to pull himself back up only to have his arms and legs completely give out on him.

“This oughta teach you not to mess with my business again” The vulture smiled down at Peter before swiftly picking you up and without hesitation throwing you over the edge of the building sending you plummeting down and towards your death.

Peter had screamed out a strangled sob at the action, blood spilling out off his mouth as he tried to drag himself towards the edge only to have the vulture fly towards him again lifting him up off the ground before slamming him back onto the hard concrete as hard as he possibly could.

Peter groaned rolling over to his side but before he could do anything else he was slammed into the ground once again, this time harder and more painful than the last time.

Again he tried to stand up, but didn’t even manage to lift his arm up before he was roughly thrown at the metal door that had lead you out and onto the rooftop.

The flying man then grabbed Peter by his collar and repeatedly punched him in the face not giving him any chance to grieve or save his loved one. Peter didn’t try to fight him back or stop him since he had nothing too fight for anymore.

And as the vulture had finally decided that Peter had, had enough he left him on the rooftop and flew away with one last threat before disappearing into the dead of night as if nothing had happened.

Peter’s vision was becoming more and more blurrier and the pain he felt was increasing by the second. 

But he had to get to the edge off the building, he had too know if your lifeless body laid there but before he could reach it a shooting pain in his side sent him into a world off pain and his body not being able too handle it he passed out.


The moment your legs had left the ground and your body had been lifted up and thrown over the rooftop a gasp had left your mouth as you felt yourself fall getting dangerously close to the ground with every second that passed.

Your eyes slammed shut preparing for the impact your body would soon feel, but before you could reach the ground two metal arms managed to wrap themselves around you and you were flown up into the air.

You looked up at your savior and saw none other than the Iron Man holding you in his arms. You let out a sigh of relive as you curled up into his chest letting a few tears escape your eyes.

“Thank you” You said looking up at the man in the Iron suit. He looked down at you and gave you a small nod before looking back up continuing his way to your home.

He had dropped you off on your fire escape before flying away probably to go and help Peter which now you realized probably thought you were dead. You felt your stomach churn at the thought and prayed Tony would make it in time to save him. 


The next day had been a complete blur for you. The only thing on your mind being Peter Parker, that hadn’t shown up at school and was impossible to reach since his phone was dead.

So you had decided to ditch the rest off the day so you could inform your boyfriend that you were in fact okay—that being if Tony hadn’t already done it.

You walked towards the double doors leading out of the school and pressed yourself against them, harshly pushing them open before making your way onto the school grounds.

You had quickly managed to make your way back to Peter’s house and nervously knocking on the door you rolled back and forth on the balls of your feet and waited for someone to open the door.

But when no one did you let yourself in quietly twisting the doorknob, you peeked your head inside and there was no one there. You huffed opening the door completely and shut it behind you.

You removed your backpack from your shoulders and laid it down onto floor along with your shoes and made your way up to Peter’s room. 

You were nervous to say the least but as you now stood in front of Peter’s door you slowly opened it only to be met with complete darkness.

You could make out Peter’s figure sitting on his bed, his back facing you as he rested his head in his hands. “Aunt May I told you I wanted to be left alone” Peter said his voice just below a whisper.

“It’s not May” you said, slowly making your way towards him. His head snapped up at the sound of your angelic voice and his brown eyes met yours. “Y/N?” he asked his voice cracking as he turned around to face you.

“H-how I- i thought you were dead” Peter sobbed his quivering lips forming a thin line. He had thought that he had finally lost his mind when he saw you standing in his room after what he had witnessed last night.

“No Pete Tony he- uh saved me” You said and with that Peter ran up to you in record time and wrapped his arms around you letting himself sob into your neck.

“Hey, it’s okay I’m here, I’m right here Peter” You said blinking back your own tears as you let the poor boy cry his heart out in front of you. 

His sobs had eventually died down and he cupped your cheeks with his hands before connecting your lips with his. His lips were salty from the tears that had previously been pouring down them and he kissed you like his life depended on it.

“I thought I lost you” He mumbled when you had finally pulled away his brown eyes staring down into your Y/E/C ones. “You’re never going too lose me Pete. I’ll always be right here” You smiled resting your head on his chest.

He let his lips linger on the top of your head before you both made your way to his bed were you fell asleep in each others arms promising to never leave each other, ever.