flat screen display

Clearly exposed

Word count: 1.895

Request: Yes

Warnings: X-Factor feels


“Y/N, what if we totally fail? I have never imagined what bein’ in a band feels like and I feel like I am going to disappoint yeh all so bad”, Harry said in one breath and you couldn’t quite understand how he did it. At some point, you were afraid he would explode. All the time he kept talking, you just giggled and shook your head, indicating that it was just the nerves talking.

“Harry, sweetie, you have nothing to be worried about. Everyone loves you and your voice so much that they will be even happier now you joined a band. Besides, it is a good opportunity to broaden your horizons and experience cooperation. Think about it”, you tried to calm him, and just when you wrapped your arms around his neck, you felt him relax underneath your touch.

“What would I do without you?”, Harry smiled and pecked your lips like an appreciation gesture.

“Shit your pants most probably”, you said as you kissed him back, only to be separated due to a high pitched voice.

“One Direction up in five”, the voice echoed.

“Go smash it baby”, you encouraged your boyfriend and patted his back in a soothing manner before he kissed his cross and took a deep breath, ready to claim the top at the X-Factor’s final along with his band mates.

You had been Harry’s girlfriend for almost two months before he made the life-changing decision to apply for the X-Factor. Someone could say you were the one who urged him to do so and it was the half truth. You had caught him singing in the back of his yard and you were magnetised by his voice. When he understood you had heard the whole thing, he was up on his feet and red like a tomato. After a lot of talking and kissing, you persuaded him to go for it and give it a try. Besides, what was the worst thing that could happen?

After he had made sure you would always be by his side, Harry joined the X-Factor family but life always has its ways to make things more interesting. That being said, Harry was announced to form a band with four other boys. It was difficult at first but they found their way and now they were up the stage, waiting to know if they were the big winners of the show.

“He is very nervous”, Anne, his mom, turned her attention from the flat screen displaying her son to your face.

“You tell me. He wouldn’t close his mouth, always saying how he would disappoint everyone. Silly boy”, you muttered the last part of your sentence under your breath, hoping his mother wouldn’t catch it, but she knew better.

“I know he is”

“When will the results be announced?”, you said, desperately wanting to change the subject.

“Probably in some minutes or so”, you got your response and prayed, folding your hands in front of your chest.

The artists’ appearances were already finished and the host of the show, had everyone at the edge of their seats. He was holding the envelope with the results and cheers could be heard throughout the whole place. What happened after he announced the results, was beyond imagination; in other words, incomparable to what was happening before. The boys didn’t win first place, but they had big plans for the future and that was what really mattered.

Harry had yet to reply to some questions and accompany the boys to some group photos so you waited for him backstage. You knew he would feel a bit blue about the outcome but he tried his best, he won his personal battle and he gained some strong bonds with his mates which is something he should really be proud of.

Parties and congratulations were thrown at One Direction, and you were by Harry’s side through it all. He had insisted you accompany him to the parties and have a good time yourself. You couldn’t believe you were such a significant part of a worldwide known superstar. From time to time, you had found yourself wondering that with his upcoming tours and meetings he would neglect and finally forget about you but he always stated otherwise: “Yeh are too precious to be forgotten” was the reply.

One thing that kept bugging you though, was the reaction your relationship would get. You hadn’t let a word out yet, but people weren’t dumb. They would understand there was something between the two of you and you really didn’t know if this was good for Harry’s reputation. You were always out and about, never missing a gathering Harry had to attend and sometimes, hands would be held and kisses would be shared, not really caring if people found out.

But someone had a serious problem with this. And this someone was no other than One Direction’s management. One particular day, an urgent meeting was held with the boys and your gut was telling you that this time, it was about you. And you were right; when Harry had come back that afternoon, his face showed everything.

“It was about our relationship, right?”, you had asked and you waited for nothing but the honest answer.

“Yes, but I tried to come up with ways we could make it work without it affectin’ the band”, he said and he hugged you.

“And what did they say about this?”

“They were negative. Only when I expressed meh last thought did they agree with meh”, he said and freed you from his embrace, wanting to look at your eyes as he would reveal the official result.

“Which was…”, you wanted to know.

“I offered not to go out together that much. But they alternated it a bit and they suggested we just keep it a secret, meanin’ we can go out together but not act like a couple”, he said taking some time to read your face and try to understand how that made you feel.

“I am so sorry yeh have to go through this Y/N, but I swear baby, we will do it together”, he said and cupped your cheeks as you nodded your head approvingly.

“Ok, we will make it”, you said and he found his way with your lips once more.

At first, you had thought this could be easy. Going out with Harry and acting like two close friends from High School. If only you knew. It was a lot more difficult. When his hand brushed past yours, you wanted nothing more than to take and hold it, nearly forgetting management’s request. In your head, this request, mirrored a forbidden path, that if you made the mistake to take, you would be lost for life. So before you had the chance to take Harry’s hand you changed your mind almost immediately. But what happened when his lips would meet the glass he was drinking from at a party and you just needed them on your own? The need was so strong that you had to turn your head elsewhere and look at something else.

But it wasn’t any easier for Harry as well. If he wanted to be more intimate with you, he had to keep himself from doing so if he didn’t want any trouble with his managers. You had suggested you stop going everywhere together and you just stay at the house all day, but he had a point in saying that if it was in the palm of his hand he would never leave his home if it meant to show his love for you.

And today, was another day you two decided to dedicate to your love without any visitors and other disturbances. Or so you thought.

“And now, it is just yeh and meh baby”, Harry explained and leaned in to kiss you before a knock on the door interrupted him.

“Who is it now?”, you said exasperated and Harry got up to open up, ready to get rid of whomever was at the door.

“Sorry I am afraid I will need to ask yeh to leave, meh girlfriend is sick and-“, he started but Niall’s voice ripped through his ears.

“Is Y/N sick or somethin’ mate? We are here for our scheduled live stream”, he said picking up his laptop from underneath his arm.

“What? And since when is a live stream scheduled?”, Harry sighed and moved closer to you on the sofa.

“Hello, Y/N”, the boys greeted you and you waved to all of them. You really loved the boys but today was supposed to be for you and Harry only. Harry must have felt the same way because the apologetic look he diverted towards you was enough to let you into his thoughts.

“And here we go!”, Louis said and smiled and all the boys said hi and waved to the camera. You just stood there, kinda awkwardly, not really knowing what to do. And this was the first time you were grateful no one had a clue about your relationship with Harry because as the numbers of the watchers increased, you didn’t know what the reactions of the fans would be and you didn’t want to face something discouraging yet.

Lost in your thoughts, you hadn’t felt Harry moving towards you in the back as the rest of the boys were talking to their fans and answering questions not really minding your presence.

“Enjoyin’ yourself back here?”, Harry said while he started to kiss your neck. You stood there dumbfounded at his actions.

“Harry, what are you doing? They will see us!”, you said meaning the thousand of fans watching the live stream already.

“This day was supposed to be ours. I don’t really care what they think of. Now, if yeh please, kiss meh”, he said and you wasted no time. Your lips found his and you tried to be sneaky and quiet not wanting to be caught.

“Niall, bring Harry over her-“, Louis started but as they parted in order to make more room for Harry to sit, your kissing position was clear enough for everyone to see. Messages were blowing up the whole page and you were slightly afraid to look at them, but even if you didn’t want to know about them Harry spoke first.

“Well, I guess we are no secret anymore. Everyone, this is meh girlfriend, Y/N and I love her very much”, he said kissing your cheeks.

“Look at this!”, Zayn shrieked and pointed to the screen, filled with messages.

“I knew it! They were always together it was impossible they were just friends!”

“They are so cute togetherrrrr!”

“I love you guys together!”

“Better than Kendall anyways”

“My new otp!”

Were just a few of the messages sent to you and you were bewildered. This was nothing like what you had imagined. People were so enthusiastic of your relationship that it felt really good. You knew some fans would be bitter but these messages were enough to encourage and make you feel appreciated.

“See baby? Everyone loves yeh. How can they not though?”, Harry said before writing instead of saying in the comments the thing he meant to tell the whole world all along.

“I hope yeh know no one can love Y/N more than I do. Thank yeh fo’ tryin’ though, yeh are all amazin’”.


Did that imagine kill me? Yes. Do i regret writing it? No. Did you regret reading it? No. (I know I am funny!). Thanks again for this lovely request and I truly hope you enjoyed reading this! And now let me fill you in on my personal drama. (I know no one is going to actually read it, and I don’t blame you, but I need to clear some things). So, the reason I have been somewhat inactive, is because of school. School has officially started and I am busier than I was but this doesn’t mean I will stop posting on this blog. (You won’t get rid of me that easily). I hope you guys understand and if you do, THANK YOU. Remember that if you want to see something posted on my blog or just rant to me, don’t hesitate to press that ask button! I am here for you lovelies! Ok, I think it is time for me to stop now. Stay awesome!

Jammin’ - Mark x MC

I have a million other things I should be working on right now. This silly little thing popped into my head and I just had to get it down. Enjoy!

Today had been a great day for Zoey Briggs-Collins. It had taken years of hard work for her and Leah, but they’d finally turned Bellerophon into the business they’d always dreamed it would be. Covering everything from cooking, home and life, entertainment, news and social justice issues, Bellerophon had become a top site that millions of people were using every day. Their traffic numbers were strong. They had a steady income from advertisers. And today she’d scored an interview with James Ashton, an up and coming playwright whose new play was generating Tony and Pulitzer buzz. She was so excited and couldn’t wait to tell Mark. 

Stepping through the backdoor, Zoey is met with the sound of the TV playing from somewhere in the house. She frowns at the sound. Whatever Mark is watching sounds vaguely familiar and it takes her a minute to place the voices and music. When she finally realizes what it is, Zoey gasps. She tosses her purse on the counter as she runs through the kitchen. It knocks over the paper towel holder and they clatter to the floor loudly. Zoey doesn’t even pause as she races into the living room. She skids to a stop in front of the TV and sees her fears confirmed. The large flat screen displays the familiar and unwelcome sight of Michael Jordan and Bugs Bunny playing basketball. 

“No, no, no,” she whispers, “not Pattern 7.”  

“Zoey,” Mark’s chuckles softly from behind her on the couch. “This isn’t Pattern 7.”

“I know what Space Jam means, Mark. It means…” Zoey turns and the words on her lips disappear when she sees him. Mark is stretched out on the couch. Nestled on his chest are their sons, Noah and Louis. The boys are sound asleep snuggled together with Mark’s arms wrapped securely around both of them. 

Zoey sighs at the sweet sight. Her boys. She kneels beside the couch and kisses the little ones before pressing a her lips to Mark’s for a lingering moment. 

“If not’s Pattern 7, what’s going on here?” Zoey raises her eyebrows at him questioningly

“I’m just hanging with my boys and showing them my favorite movie,” he grins. 

Zoey looks down at the sleeping children on her husband’s chest. 

“Yeah, they seem really into it,” she teases. “I think 15 months and 4 weeks is a little young for Space Jam.

“Well,” Mark hedges, “maybe I just wanted to watch it. It’s been a long time since I’ve been miserable enough to fall into Pattern 7.”

Zoey rolls her eyes at him, “You complaining about how happy we are, Collins?” 

Mark looks at the boys in his arms  and then lifts his eyes to Zoey, giving her a contented smile. 

“Never.” 

anonymous asked:

Hey there! So I'm trying to start a d&d campaign for Lost Mine of Phandelver and rather than printing off the maps and things (cause I'm cheap) I was wondering if you knew of a way to display maps on a screen in such a way that the characters and enemies could be moved around easily? Thanks a bunch! (Also the Andy art tore at my soul a little bit 😭)

If you are playing with people in person, I’ve seen people use flat-screen monitors to display grids and you can then move pieces on it!


If you are playing online, obviously Roll20 provides a way to move tokens and etc, I use photoshop with my players because between internet funkiness and me having to learn a new program it’s just easier.

(example map with the lettered tokens being my players, the yello unline spot is a spiritual weapon, the yellow lined token is an NPC and the eyeball circles are Occulo swarms)

and sharp as a tack
(the Chuck au)

“Darcy, what do you think you’re doing?” Jane says at the exact moment Darcy swings her legs over the window ledge.  Her shoulders droop and Darcy shuts her eyes tight.

One, two, three, four-

“Darcy!”

Oh, right…

“Um, I was escaping?” she replies, shoulders drooping.

“It’s your birthday party.”

“Yeah, well, they aren’t exactly my friends,”

“That’s because you don’t have any friends.”

“I do too have friends…they just aren’t here.”

“You haven’t had friends since you dropped out two years ago.”

“That’s a matter of opinion,” Darcy says easing back into her room. She does have friends, work friends, who are more than acquaintances but maybe not friend-friends.

“Darcy I have invited real live men here for you. Nice men.”

‘Nice men’ in Jane speak meant doctors. It always meant doctors, Jane being one and married to one, or possibly that one male nurse that was gorgeous until he opened his mouth. And Darcy, well, she had a tendency to make a terrible first impression, whether she wanted to or not.

….

Click, click, scroll.

She really should have gone to bed an hour ago, but five more minutes won’t kill her. Or forty if she was being honest with herself. Darcy was mostly always honest with herself.

She checks email one last time. Junk, junk…James? An email from James. Oh, God.

James was…awesome. He was smart, gorgeous and they could have had something. Maybe they would have if Darcy hadn’t been painfully awkward in college, or you know her whole damn life, and they didn’t end up becoming friends

With no little bit of trepidation she opens the email.  

the terrible troll raises his sword

What?, she thinks, racking her brain for the right response. There was a game, a game she hasn’t thought about in the two years since Darcy failed at life and dropped out. Go big or go home, and she went home. Home to her perfect sister and a crappy job fixing computers at the local Buy More. Shut up, brain.

It takes a few attempts before she finds the words in her head and her fingers fly across the keyboard.

attack troll with nasty knife

The screen flickers and images flood the screen. She cannot move. Cannot blink.

“You’re going to be late,” Jane shouts.

"Urgh,” Darcy winces, cradling her head in her arms as she sits up on the floor. Everything hurts, but her head hurts worse. “Ow, ow, ow.”

“Darcy, are you even listening to me? You’ll lose your job.”

“Shut it, Jane, my head hurts,” Darcy moans. She scrambles across the bedroom to get her shirt and tie off the hook. It smells fresh enough when she sniffs it. Good enough.

Work sucks more than usual the next day.

Her head won’t stop pounding no matter how much aspirin and coffee she downs.

…General Ross will be arriving here later today.

“He’s already here,” Darcy says, waving a vague hand at the news playing on flat screens displayed behind the Nerd Herd desk. Nobody listens to her. That isn’t anything new.

….

“Please hold.”

“No, no, no…damn it,” Darcy says, rolling her eyes at the tinny Muzak playing in her ear.

“I like ‘em big and stupid,” Clint mutters low.

“I like ‘em big and real dumb, I like ‘em big and stupid. What kind of guy does a lot for me. Superman with a lobotomy,” Darcy sings, short pink nails tapping on the keyboard in front of her, phone held between head and shoulder.

“Excuse me, I hope I’m not interrupting,” rumbles a low voice.

Darcy jumps, hands tangling in the cord of the phone, “Oh, my God.”

“Sorry, I, uh, need some help,” says the same deep voice. Darcy looks up, and up. Holy crap, he was beautiful. Tall and cut. Unfair.

Tight white t-shirt, blue motorcycle jacket, baseball cap, dark jeans. Bright blue eyes hidden behind hipster glasses that Darcy would have mocked if not for her propensity for wearing them herself. Soft pink lips, strong jaw with just a hint of stubble.

“Its a song, Julie Brown, totally 80s,” Darcy says, face hot. Kill me now.

“Yeah.”

Clint snickers beside her and says “Welcome to the Buy More, I’m Clint and this is Darcy.”

“Steve,” he says with a half smile, which was half adorable and seventy five percent gorgeous and roughly ninety seven percent panty melting. “Didn’t think anyone named their kids Clint any more… or Darcy.”

“Well, my mother is a member of the Jane Austen Society, and carnival freaks found him in a dumpster.”

“But they raised me as their own,” Clint says dryly.

“I’m here about this,” he says, pulling a starkphone from his pocket. It’s an older model, practically paleolithic. 

“Dude, that’s ancient.”  

“I’ve only had it a few years,” Steve says defensively, phone cradled in the palm of his hand.

“Ancient,” Darcy nods. She plucks the phone from his hand, absolutely doesn’t think about the jolt down her spine when her fingers brush against warm calloused skin. She unscrews the back of the case to check the battery. It’s in place but there is a screw loose. She tightens the screw and assembles the phone again.

“There you go, Steve,” she says, lips curving in a wide grin as she holds the phone in the cage of her fingers. Chipped nails painted neon pink. Steve’s eyes sweep over her slow and the rough calluses of his fingers linger on her skin as he plucks the starkphone from her grip. He smiles again. Slow like honey, her brain sings softly, which is ridiculous as the honey in the bear bottle is fast as anything. Darcy’s belly gives a traitorous flip.

“Thanks, Darcy.”

“Ask him out already,” Clint hisses beside her nudging her with his elbow.

“Uh…”

(A young woman is smiling towards the left of the picture, and is sitting at a desk, with one hand touching a white encased robot.)

Cynthia Breazeal: Why she kicks ass

  • She is an Associate Professor of Media Arts and Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she is the director of the Personal Robots Group (formerly the Robotic Life Group) at the MIT Media Laboratory. She is best known for her work in robotics where she is recognized as a pioneer of Social Robotics and Human Robot Interaction. In 2003, she was named to the MITTechnology ReviewTR100 as one of the top 100 innovators in the world under the age of 35.
  • She developed the robot Kismet as a doctoral thesis looking into expressive social exchange between humans and humanoid robots. Kismet is internationally recognized, and is one of the best known robots developed to explore social and emotional aspects of human-robot interaction.
  • Kismet and some of the other robots Breazeal co-developed while a graduate student at the MIT Artificial Intelligence Lab, can be found at the MIT Museum. Notable examples include the upper torso humanoid robot Cog and the insect-like robot Hannibal.
  • She continues to work on social interaction and socially situated learning between people and robots.
  • The successor to Kismet, Leonardo, another globally recognized robot (co-developed with Stan Winston Studio and recognized in 2006 by Wired Magazine as one of the “50 Best Robots Ever”) is used to investigate social cognition and Theory of Mind abilities on robots with application to human-robot collaboration, in addition to developing social learning abilities for robots such as imitation, tutelage, and social referencing.
  • Nexi is the most recent robot in this tradition (awarded a TIME Magazine 50 Best Inventions of 2008). Nexi is a MDS robot (Mobile, Dexterous, Social) that combines rich social communication abilities with mobile dexterity to investigate more complex forms of human-robot teaming.
  • Other social robots developed in Breazeal’s Personal Robots Group include Autom, a robot diet and exercise coach that was found to be more effective than a computer counterpart in sustaining engagement and building trust and a working alliance with users. Autom is in the process of being commercialized.
  • Breazeal’s group has also explored expressive remote presence robots (for example, MeBot and Huggable). The physical social embodiment of the MeBot was found to elicit greater psychological involvement, engagement, and desire to cooperate over purely screen based video conferencing or a mobile screen.
  • She is also is recognized as a designer and innovator on the national and global stage. She received the Gilbreth Lectures Award by the National Academy of Engineering in 2008, and has spoken at a number of prominent global events including the World Science Festival, the World Economic Forum, and TEDWomen.
  • She is a featured scientist in the Women’s Adventures in Science series (sponsored by the National Academy of Sciences), and in 2003, Breazeal was recognized as a Finalist in the National Design Awards in Communication at the White House.
  • She also has a prominent role as a virtual participant in a popular exhibit on robots with the traveling exhibit, Star Wars: Where Science Meets Imagination, interacting with a real C-3PO (voiced by Anthony Daniels as she spoke to the audience through a pre-recorded message displayed on a large plasma flat-screen display.