Ruined ‘Apartments’ May Hold Clues to Native American History
NEAR MANCOS, Colo. — On the site of a former auto-repair shop here, broken stone walls mark the site of a 900-year-old village that may yield new insights into an ancient desert culture.
The ruins are what remains of two “great houses” — apartment buildings, essentially — that formed a northern outpost of a civilization based at Chaco Canyon, about 100 miles away in northwestern New Mexico.
Archaeologists from the Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, in nearby Cortez, have just begun the first systematic excavation of this site in an effort to learn how its residents lived in the early 1100s, and how they related to the wider Chaco culture.
In particular, the Northern Chaco Outliers Project aims to determine when the village was occupied, how many people lived there, and whether they did so during an extended drought of 1130-1180, which may have accelerated a northward movement of people from Chaco. Read more.
Note: I really feel in the mood for writing right now, so that’s a thing I guess??? We need more Oak in our lives, so here you go. To me, Oak likes milk in his coffee ok? This is probably gonna be a series because I really like writing it (Ok, it’s definitely gonna be a series. Sorry, not sorry) (This is supposed to take place while the original cast was still on the show btw.)
Request: okay um hi, this is my first time ever asking for well anything on here so I was wondering if you have the time if you could write an Oak x reader fanfic, I never see enough for him. The prompt can be whatever you want/are comfortable writing for him. All love ❤️
Pairing: Okieriete Onaodowan x reader
You had just started working at a small coffee shop in downtown New York close to the Richard Rodger’s theater. When you had started working there, it was just a way of making money on the side while you studied as well as a bit of an escape from exactly that. You had not expected it to very eventful. Oh, how you were wrong.
It was no secret to your colleagues that you were a huge fan of the newest musical to arrive at the Richard Rodger’s theater, Hamilton An American Musical. When Lin-Manuel Miranda himself had come into the coffee shop, you were pretty much about to lose your shit. You had been the only one except for your boss there since it was morning and regularly, not a lot of people showed up in the morning. You were in the middle of wiping down a table when he entered and your jaw practically dropped. You tried to keep your shit together, though. You were not about to lose it in front of the writer and lead of the musical.
“Good morning sir. What can I do for you?” You questioned as you returned to your spot behind the counter, leaving the cloth at the table you had just been wiping.
He smiled at you and it was infectious, making you smile as well. He looked at the name tag on your apron before answering. “Good morning, Y/N. Can I have a black coffee please?” He asked.
“Of course, do you want it to go or are you drinking it here?” You asked as you tapped the price of the coffee into the cash register.
“To go, please.” He smiled at you. He seemed polite and down to earth and it made it a lot easier to handle.
After he had paid for the coffee and you were about to turn around to make it for him, he caught you a bit off guard by his question. “Don’t you need my name to put on the cup or something?” He asked politely.
It made you blush slightly. You already knew who he was, so you had not really thought about asking him for his name. “Uhm… I already know your name.” You said, lowering your gaze.
“Oh…” He simply breathed with a huge grin on his face that you did not quite understand. “Hamilton?” He asked and you nodded.
“Yeah. A bit of a fan, I guess.” You admitted as warmth spread across your face. You felt awkward, so you simply offered him a smile before turning around to make the coffee he had ordered.
You had a couple other customers and being the only barista currently working, it took a bit longer than expected and when you finally finished by writing his name on the cup you had expected him to have grown a bit impatient, but when you turned to the counter to put it down and call his name, he seemed relaxed, even smiled at you as you called his name “Black coffee for Mr. Miranda.” You called.
He arrived at the counter in a matter of a few seconds, taking the cup with a small “Thank you.” Unable to conceal the grin that spread across his lips. You were still blushing and it was embarrassing. You just felt so awkward. “If it’s any good, I’ll definitely recommend the place to the rest of the cast. I hope that when I come back you will have seen the show and can tell me what you think.” He joked.
You were unable to hold back the giggle that left your lips. You felt a bit less uncomfortable when it seemed like he just thought the whole situation was fun and light. “Have a good day, sir.” You simply said and with that, he left.
You did go to see the show a couple of weeks later. Lin had visited the coffee shop a couple of times before you went, always in the morning. At least what you knew of. You had had time to chat with him several times and you had become somewhat friends. He was nice and easy to talk to and you did not get half as embarrassed around him anymore. He even came by the morning on the day where you were going to see the show and you had not really talked to him about going.
So, when he entered the coffee shop, a grin spread across your lips. You should probably tell him, you figured
“Well look at you, sunshine.” He joked as he approached the counter. “Why are you so happy this dull winter morning?” He asked fondly.
You giggled at that, shaking your head slightly. “Well. You know. I’m gonna go see a certain Broadway musical tonight.” You said, unable to help the grin that spread across your face.
“Whaaat? That’s great Y/N!” He genuinely seemed excited and it made you happy.
“I know! I’m so happy.” You giggled. You had no idea why you had not told him before. Maybe because you still did not fully believe that it was happening.
“I’ll definitely take you backstage so you can meet the cast. Whoever you are going with too, of course.” He said excitedly and it made you blush.
“Oh… Lin, you don’t have to.” You laughed. You were pretty sure that they were busy and probably could find better things than saying hi to Lin’s barista friend.
“No, no. I’m serious! You’re great. They’ll love you.” He decided.
You gave in with a small smile. “Fine.” You giggled because you knew there was no way you were getting out of it. You suddenly felt very nervous about going tonight. The people you were going with knew that you had the biggest crush on Oak, so it could potentially be the most embarrassing night of your life.
“Yes!” He exclaimed. You had trouble believing that Lin was actually excited about you meeting the cast, his friends. But, he genuinely seemed excited and it made you happy that it seemed like he considered you his friend.
You laughed softly, shaking your head a little. “The usual?” You asked, trying to change the subject. You just had to let the fact that you were meeting the cast sink in.
“Yeah. Can you add a coffee with milk for Oak? Promised him to bring one along for him.” He asked. You swallowed lightly at the mention of Oak. You still could not believe that you would be meeting the guy that you had a celebrity crush on.
“Sure.” You said after a second and as he paid for the two coffees, you wondered if Lin had noticed you zone out for a second at the mention of Oak’s name. You hoped not.
You had the two coffees ready in no time as there were even fewer people than usual in the shop. You wrote Lin’s name on the cup with regular, black coffee and Oak on the one that had milk in it as you placed it down on the counter. “I hope you boys enjoy your coffee.” You smiled.
He thanked you before leaving the coffee shop. The rest of your shift went by pretty quietly as a lot of people decided to stop by the coffee shop that morning. You were going to see the show tonight with a couple of your coworkers and you managed to catch them just before leaving. Or rather, they managed to catch you. You had planned on just texting them that Lin was taking you to meet the cast, but now you might as well tell them.
“Y/N! Are you ready for tonight?” One of them asked.
You grinned slightly at that and nodded. “Definitely is. Lin invited us backstage, by the way.” You giggled as their eyes widened.
“He was here, again? Seriously, Y/N. You need to get his phone number or something!”
You shook your head a little. “First of all, he is married. Secondly, Y/N is into Oak, not Lin.” One of your other coworkers said before you could even get to answer.
“Right… I’ll see you tonight, then?” You questioned, really wanting to get out of this situation. It was not like you did not like your coworkers, a lot of them had become your close friends. But, first of all, you had studies to attend to and second of all, it was getting a bit embarrassing.
“I’ll come over to your place tonight, help you with your outfit and all that.” Alex teased, who just so happened to be the person who you had grown closest with out of all your coworkers but who also constantly teased you about your crush on Oak and especially after you had met Lin.
“Bye, Alex.” You waved at her. You had not exactly said no since you would probably be really nervous tonight and having a friend’s help would definitely be nice. So, having someone there with you would probably be nice.
Once you got back to your apartment, you were pretty exhausted and you barely managed to lie down on your couch to take a nap before there was a knock on your door. With a sigh, you got up and already knowing who it was, you mentally facepalmed yourself for not realizing earlier that Alex would probably be there way too early.
You opened the door with a slight groan to reveal Alex in a dress, something you had never seen before. Usually, you never saw your coworkers in anything but their work clothes or the stuff that they wore on a regular day. “Hey.” You simply said.
“Hello, grumpy.” She teased, which made you roll your eyes.
“Give me a break, I just arrived.” You snorted. You should probably have expected her to be here already, but you had just expected her to be there 30 minutes before you had to go or something. Instead, she literally arrived an hour and a half before.
“Poor thing.” She said sarcastically, as she stepped into your apartment. It was not like she looked like she was going to some fancy party, but she still wore heels and a pretty gorgeous, yet simple black dress. Casual but pretty, but then again; It was Alex. You had just planned on putting on a pair of black jeans and some kind of shirt. But, she obviously had other plans for you.
“Where’s your closet? You should take a shower while I pick your outfit.” She winked at you. You groaned, but simply lead her to your bedroom where your closet was.
“Don’t pick anything I wouldn’t or I swear, I will strangle you.” You said a bit dramatically. You were still not sure you wanted to show up in a dress, but it was probably what she was going to pick out for you.
“Well, you need to impress Oak somehow.” She called after you as you left for the bathroom to take a shower and put on makeup afterward.
When you left the bathroom a little over a half an hour later, your bedroom was scattered in clothes and you were pretty much ready to just stumble back into the bathroom. You had just organized your closet a couple of days ago and now it was all a mess again.
“Alex, really?” You groaned, pressing two fingers against the bridge of your nose. It was truly a mess.
“Relax. I’ll help you clean it up later. What do you think?” She asked, holding up a black dress that you had had for years. It was nothing special but it was definitely too short too.
“Definitely not.” You snorted and rolled your eyes. Had you been going out to get drunk, maybe. But you were going to the theater.
“Okay… How about this one?” She asked, holding up a black pencil skirt and a white silky top.
You shrugged a little at that. “I don’t know… isn’t it a little office-y?” You questioned. She had to agree with you on that one, so she moved on to the next thing she had figured you might want to wear.
She held up a pair of your best, black jeans and a black turtleneck with short sleeves and happened to be a little cropped. “You could pair it with a cardigan or a denim jacket?” She suggested. “And I figured these shoes would go well with it.” She added, holding up a pair of nice, black shoes.
It seemed pretty great to you, so you nodded approvingly. “Yeah. Seems good to me.” You said. It had taken you a good amount of time to find the outfit, but you still were not late. Though, it was probably good that she had arrived a little if not a lot earlier than you expected.
While you changed in the bathroom, Alex put your clothes back into your closet where she had found them and once you were all set, you could begin to feel the nervousness.
“You know… Maybe this isn’t a good idea.” You swallowed.
Your friend simply snorted at that. “Really, Y/N? This is going to be great!” She said as she held out a dark green cardigan that she had found in your closet. “Put this on.” She added and you did.
The two of you were out of your apartment after having pulled your coats on. It was not a long walk to the Richard Rodger’s, but you had all decided on getting there a little early to find your seats and as you made your way to the theater with Alex, you felt more and more nervous. What if you embarrassed yourself completely?
It’s that time, kiddos: SILLY Star Wars AUs FROM ME!
Rey opens up a car repair shop. She’s tough and she knows her stuff!
Enter prettyboy rich guy Ben:
I don’t know exactly what they’re arguing about here, but it’s something about his car and they both think they know more than the other person. Rey doesn’t even know why he bothered bringing his car in, even though she secretly finds the car very impressive…
At some point, Finn shows up to apply for a job. He really hates his current employer and is looking for a change. Sure, he doesn’t have any formal training or experience, but working on cars as a hobby and tweaking his resume juuuuuusst a bit should help his case. Rey doesn’t have much time for reading resumes, so she gives it the required glance and thinks this new guy looks good enough for the job.
Rey’s got another employee at her shop: a former drifter named Chewie. She doesn’t ask him much about his previous life, but her new customer Ben seems to know him. Chewie doesn’t seem to like Ben much, and the feeling appears mutual. Later, Rey learns Chewie used to work for Ben’s dad, who just happens to own a racing team (and this is sort of canon, too: Han apparently started up some racing team in between fighting in the Rebellion and whatever the hell happened to Ben).
Rey is so cute! She seems like such an extra point nerd in her Before the Awakening story, so I imagine her car repair shop would be super organized.
As many of you know I was Mod Em of @etheric-connections and left abruptly. It was due to reasons I would love to explain. First of all Jade and Tati only taught one thing the ENTIRE time I was there when I was promised there would be lessons twice a week. I was one of the ones who had to clean up the homophobic spirit mess because if I didn’t the shop would have gone belly up. I got scolded over V because she picked a companion after 3 days. She had over ten applications within 24 hours of her being posted. I was bashed by Tati over my grammar due to the fact I type as fast as I think alot of the times. Also Tati was calling me out on other things IN FRONT of the Interns and not in private. MC lying about her age in other servers which she is in 18+ chats in disturbs me because there is a huge legal issue in that because by law she is a minor. She is 17 right now. Also there was an incident with a spirit which makes me sick even talking about it right now. A spirit whose Companion asked us to check up on them had an infected leg caused by sea snakes. I applied antivenom and less than 20 minutes later they amputated the leg without giving time for the anti venom to work. As far as I know the spirit DID NOT give consent. Also for the giveaway. Those who won FIRST and SECOND prize may contact me at @thesmoldragoness for their customized bath bomb recipe. I will keep my end of the giveaway up. Also I have come to find out seeing it personally myself Jade has been switching spirits out for thoughtforms. Also I had to save a spirit she did a binding for because the binding almost killed the spirit. I had to undo the binding myself which actually made me sick afterwards. The spirit was fine after the binding was broken. I had to say my peace. Take it as you will. -Mod SNACK
Resume: I had an ordinary life, or that’s what I wanted to believe. I lost myself in the TV series that I listened to forget the normal boring life. What I didn’t know, however, was that my life would change completely overnight.
Finding myself in 2013 at Beacon Hills County.
This will be a Stiles x Reader but only further in the story
In this chapter: The bus ride is long. Too long. Something’s missing.
Word count: 2959
A/N: AHHHHHH I’m late but here ya go!!! Thanks to @maddie110201 who helped me proofread this! I hope everyone like it! (none of the gifs are mine)
What do you mean, I saw him, he fell and … ”
heard me, Scott. I won’t repeat it in case a certain rabid alpha listens,” I
added, glancing behind me at the front of the bus. Stiles was sitting near
Scott in the last row of bench and I sat right in front of them, turned towards
them. Ethan, who was sitting at the front, didn’t turn his head towards us. I
hoped disclosing the information to Scott wouldn’t make things worse, but to see
him still hurt from the fight against the alpha pack was worrying me too much.
On the site of a former auto-repair shop here, broken stone walls mark the site of a 900-year-old village that may yield new insights into an ancient desert culture.
The ruins are what remains of two “great houses” — apartment buildings, essentially — that formed a northern outpost of a civilization based at Chaco Canyon, about 100 miles away in northwestern New Mexico.
Archaeologists from the Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, in nearby Cortez, have just begun the first systematic excavation of this site in an effort to learn how its residents lived in the early 1100s, and how they related to the wider Chaco culture.
In particular, the Northern Chaco Outliers Project aims to determine when the village was occupied, how many people lived there, and whether they did so during an extended drought of 1130-1180, which may have accelerated a northward movement of people from Chaco.
The project is the first in many years to systematically excavate any of about 250 great houses that were built in the region known as Four Corners, said John Kantner, an archaeologist at the University of North Florida.
“We have so little understanding of the role of great houses and the relationship between others and Chaco Canyon itself,” said Dr. Kantner, who excavated Blue J, another Chaco-related site in New Mexico.
The project here has the potential to “fill in the gaps about the outlying great houses,” he said.
Susan Ryan, director of archaeology at the Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, leads the Haynie Site project. Credit Nick Cote for The New York Times
Character(s): Prompto Argentum, Gladiolus Amicitia, Ignis Scientia, Iris Amicitia, Talcott Hester, Cor Leonis (mentioned), Noctis Lucis Caelum (mentioned), Lunafreya Nox Fleuret (mentioned), Umbra (mentioned), Pryna (mentioned), You
Chapter Number/One Shot: One Shot (as always, if a request comes in, there could be a follow-up)
Genre: Angst, Fluff
Summary: When Insomnia fell, you and Prompto lost sight of each other. Both of you kept looking, but now, five years after Noctis’ disappearance, you’re met with the opportunity to find Prompto faster than you thought you would.
Word Count: 2738 words
Author’s Note: I’ve started playing FFXV again and I just… I love my boy Prompto… Also, I just found out Gladio has a girlfriend apparently and there’s a little tiny reference to that in here, so look out for that, mhhh mhh. I’m a little mad at SE for making me suffer like this but ok (read the trivia section on Gladio’s wiki page…………………..or don’t)… I’m sad he didn’t get to tell the others :(((
Prompto Argentum has no one — at least that’s what he thought. No real parents, no friends, no nothing. But then he befriended Noctis, and with Noctis came Gladio and Ignis. And with them came the whole of the Kingsglaive, save for a select few whom Prompto was not friends with. He even came to become friends with Lunafreya, Noctis’ fiancée, bonding over her dogs Umbra and Pryna. And then there was you.
You were different. Prompto didn’t like it when others called you his friend, if only because he wanted to be more than that. He didn’t like it when his best friends shot you sideways glances, giving him smug looks. Or when they wiggled their eyebrows at him behind your back because they knew of his crush.
A crush — that’s all it was. At least, he wished it were that way.
When Insomnia fell, he was devastated. Not because the city he’d learned to call home was now under Imperial rule, but because he had no idea whether you were safe or not. Neither did you know that Prompto was safe with Noctis.
It was always the same — missing each other by just a hair, never actually meeting. Your phone had gotten lost amidst the fighting in Insomnia, and you knew no one who had Prompto’s phone number, besides Noctis, who’d gone missing years ago at that point, and Ignis and Gladio, who just as unreachable to you as Prompto was.
Now, the Starscourge was upon Eos and finding Prompto seemed impossible. Finding anyone in the eternal darkness was impossible. There were only the people with whom you’d been when the darkness had set in — no one dared stray far from the places they’d sought asylum at. The daemons were too dangerous, even the most skilled hunters often failed to keep them at bay.
However, there were people crazy enough to still settle on finding and killing these beasts for a bounty — hunters. Most resided in Hammerhead, former car repair shop and gas station turned hot spot for hunting business.
You were just kilometres away in Lestallum, where you were forced to live because fighting was not much of an option for you. There was plenty of food and drink and enough people to get around, but it wasn’t Insomnia. It was just a city shrouded in darkness like the rest of the world. The artificial light, provided by the meteor’s power plant, did help but in the end, it wasn’t real.
One fateful day though, a young man named Talcott, coming from Hammerhead, passed by the city, bringing food rations and other necessities, brought along someone else. Someone you just so happened to know. The problem was he couldn’t see you because he was now blind.
Maybe your chances of finding Prompto weren’t that bad after all. Ignis was in the passenger seat of the truck, listening as Talcott spoke to some of the townspeople. Yet, he wasn’t making an effort to get out. You had to take matters into your own hands, it seemed.
“Sorry,” you interrupted Talcott’s current conversation, “Could you- would you mind if I spoke to Ignis for a second. I- I haven’t seen him in years. Frankly, I didn’t even know whether he was still alive or not and I- I just hope he might help me find a person I’ve been looking for since… well, since before the darkness came.” You’d peaked the young man’s interest. He nodded, his head turning towards the truck. “Ignis! There’s someone here who wants to see you. She says she knows you.”
Ignis didn’t make you wait for long. Soon enough you were sitting at a booth inside a diner with him. His eyes were hidden behind green-tinted sunglasses. There was a scar that was visible even with the glasses covering a great portion of his face.
“You wanted to talk?” he inquired and it almost seemed like he was looking you in the eyes.
“Ignis- I- It’s me, (Y/N). I didn’t know you were still alive. I thought… all of you’d disappeared along with Noctis.”
“Yes, well, I may not be able to see anything anymore, but I am very much alive,” he half-joked, resting his back against the couch-like booth bench.
“How- how did that happen to you?” you asked, almost afraid of the answer.
“It’s been a long time since that happened. I’d rather not tell you the details, but Noctis was still around back then.” His gaze fell to the table.
“Do you… know where the others are?”
“You mean if they’re still alive? Yes, they are. We keep in contact, in case Noctis should ever return.”
“Do you think he will?”
“I know it,” he declared and silence fell between the two of you. “That isn’t what you really wanted to talk to me about, though, is it?” Ignis questioned, a grin ghosting his face. He knew exactly what you wanted him to tell you.
“Do you know where he is? Is he well?” you breathed, the words getting stuck in your mouth.
Ignis chuckled. “Prompto’s alive and well. A little tattered by the darkness and all the daemons maybe, but otherwise he’s good.” You let out the breath you’d been holding. “He’s in Hammerhead, hunting. Like the rest of us are.” Ignis paused to think for a moment. “If you’d like… I’m sure Talcott wouldn’t mind one more passenger in the truck.”
Your breath hitched. You’d see Prompto again.
“Thank you, Ignis,” you almost cried, hugging him across the table. His reaction was reserved, typical Ignis.
As you neared Hammerhead, you could feel your palms becoming sweaty. After all these years, this was it. As simple as that you had found him. Well, not yet anyway, but you knew he frequented this place.
Ignis left you to fend for yourself while he went with Talcott to report to Cid. So now you were alone and you honestly had no idea what you were supposed to do with yourself. You decided it was best to look for a place to stay first. Heading over to the diner, which had a vacancy, you wondered when you would see Prompto. Where was he staying? What was he doing?
The man that worked in the diner slash motel, whose name you learned to be Takka, generously offered you one of the rooms above it at a lower price than usual, since you weren’t one of the hunters looking for work. “Nice to see a fresh face around here,” he remarked, a shy smile rushing over his visage. The years had eaten away at the man’s face – the shadows underneath his eyes probably courtesy of the long night.
You sat down in one of the many empty booths, rethinking your strategy. Finding Prompto would be solely based on luck. It would be a waiting game, hoping that maybe one day he’d come back from a hunt to collect his bounty and run into you by chance.
Suddenly, your train of thought was interrupted when you noticed a huge shadow looming over you. Looking up from the table, you almost didn’t believe your eyes.
“G-Gladio?!” you squeaked, shock widening your eyes. A warm smile spread on the man’s face as you jumped up and hugged him – he still felt more like just a mass of rock-hard muscle rather than an actual human being. “Let me look at you,” he demanded, placing his enormous hands on your small shoulders. Your eyes had now lit up in excitement. Gladiolus had been like a brother to you before he and the others left Insomnia for Altissia. Your inability to track down Iris in Lestallum just made everything worse once the Starscourge started showing its full effect. It was like all ties to your former life had been cut.
“What have you been up to these past few years? Where’ve you been?” Gladio asked with a sense of urgency, motioning for you to sit down in the booth with him. He barely fit between the table and the bench.
“I was- I was in Lestallum. I tried looking for you guys after the Starscourge set in, but… I lost my phone when Insomnia fell. I tried finding Iris in Lestallum, but- it was like everyone had suddenly… vanished. There was no way for me to find anyone outside of the city. And then, just today Talcott came with supplies… and Ignis was there. He said I’d find you and Prompto here… and I just-“ Gladio interrupted you, saying, “That’s… I’m sorry we didn’t look harder for you. Prompto’s been turning each and every stone around looking for you ever since we heard the news about Insomnia all those years ago. Poor guy kept trying to call you for months on end. And to think you were right in front of our noses, holed up in Lestallum with no way out… Iris… she went to Lestallum just like you did but when Jared was killed and Talcott was all alone… everything changed. She moved up to Cape Caem and when the Starscourge set in… she went to become a hunter under the Marshal’s training.”
That explained a lot. Why there was no one you knew in Lestallum. Where everyone had gone.
Gladio sighed. You furrowed your eyebrows, looking at him with a questioning gaze. “Prompto’s currently on a hunt and I doubt he’ll come back soon. Do you want me to message him?”
You bit your lip, thinking. “No, I- Can I call him?” you decided, the question hanging in the air for a while. “Sure,” Gladio approved, handing you his phone with Prompto’s contact info already open. You took the phone into your sweaty hands. “I’ll be just outside if you need me,” Gladio affirmed you, giving you an encouraging look.
Without a second thought, you pressed dial on the phone. It beeped exactly three times before Prompto picked up.
“Incredibly bad timing, Gladio!” he shouted over the phone. His voice was muffled and there were undeniably daemon sounds in the back. You heard a few shots go off, the sound loud and painful through the phone. More shots followed, then silence. “Gladio? You still there?” he asked, breathing heavily.
“I’m hanging up, Gladio,” he threatened after you hadn’t said anything for a while. “I can hear you breathe, Gladio. This is really not the time for a prank. There’s daemons everywhere out here.” His voice sounded urgent. Yet, you couldn’t bring yourself to say anything. “That’s it, I’m hanging up now. Bye,” he told you, still thinking you were Gladiolus. “No, wait. Don’t hang up, Prompto,” you finally declared, making it known to him that you were in fact, not Gladio.
“Who… who is this?” You almost stopped breathing. “Prompto, it’s- it’s me. It’s (Y/N). I-“
“Wow,” Prompto sighed, his voice rising a few octaves. “I- You- W-Where are you?”
“Hammerhead. In the diner,” you responded, your breath still taken away. There was a bit of rustling on the other end of the line but soon Prompto responded, “It’ll take a few hours for me to get back… Wait for me?” “Always,” you whispered in response.
As soon as that, the call had ended. Your hand sank to your thighs, the phone resting there, Prompto’s contact info open once again. It would be just hours until you saw him again. Hours.
Slowly, you rose from your seat and, as if in a trance, waddled outside the diner to Gladio. His head turned to you, long hair brushing his shoulders. He raised his eyebrows at you, asking what Prompto had said. “He’s coming back. Gladio, he’s coming back,” you repeated over and over again while sitting down on the ground almost in slow motion. Happiness was spreading all throughout your body. It was like a weight you didn’t even know was there had been lifted from your shoulders.
Gladio stayed with you for those hours. The wait seemed like it was longer than all the years you’d waited before combined – it was torture. He tried distracting you, telling you stories of what’d happened in the past few years, but somehow it made it worse.
It must’ve been morning when Gladio finally left, saying he needed to check on his sister’s whereabouts. Though, of course, time was more of a concept in the darkness than an actual thing. The sun didn’t rise, nor did it set, so a morning was just something on the clock, not something you could identify by looking at the sky. You spent another hour alone in front of the diner, looking at the empty road before you finally glimpsed a figure approaching the gas station.
He was running, no, sprinting towards it. Immediately, you knew it was Prompto.
There was nothing holding you back anymore. You followed his example and jumped up from your place in front of the diner, running in his direction. He met you halfway, in front of the caravan, your bodies colliding in a heartfelt embrace. Nothing and no one could keep you apart now.
It wasn’t long before the two of you started crying, both shaking violently in each other’s arms. Prompto kept patting your hair, as you held onto him like your life depended on it. His head found its place in the crook of your neck, murmuring ‘I missed you’s and ‘I’m so sorry’s. The space in between was filled with your heavy breathing and sniffling, trying to keep the tears at bay. You’d waited years for this moment. All the pent-up emotions were being released at once.
Prompto’s hands were on your back, pressing your body flush against his, while your hands tangled in his hair, savouring the feel of every passing moment. You kept releasing shaky breaths, focussing on nothing but Prompto’s body against yours. His familiar scent, his soft hair, his muscly arms and strong fingers pressing against your back, his irregular breaths on your neck – all of it, real.
It felt like hours before his grip on you loosened, both of you pulling back. You must’ve looked horrible, tear-stained and flushed and shaking before him, but if you did then he did not care. He didn’t look much different than you anyway – his nose runny, blond hair ruffled and his cheeks red, almost hiding his freckles.
Silence fell between you, both not knowing what to say. With a leap of faith, Prompto proclaimed, “I love you. I- I always ha-“ But he didn’t need to finish the sentence. You were nodding furiously, tears already gleaming in your eyes again. His mouth hung open, shocked and surprised. Then, another leap of faith, he grabbed both sides of your face, cheeks still wet with tears, and kissed you.
It was sloppy and desperate and unexpected, yet at the same time, you wouldn’t have wanted it to be different. It was perfect in its own way. When you pulled away, Prompto rested his forehead against yours, breathing hot air onto your face. It was like time had stopped for the two of you.
Until, suddenly, somebody cleared their throat, causing you and Prompto to jump in shock and bump your heads against each other. A painful reminder that time had in fact, not stopped. Gladio and Iris, who were standing in front of you, had pulled you back into reality. A shy smile adorned Iris’ face, her hair now almost as long as her brother’s and pulled up in a similar style. You recognised her immediately, though she didn’t have the same carefree aura about her anymore. She looked much more grown-up, opting for a black hunter’s attire instead of the skirts and short sleeves you were used to seeing on her. Gladio’s eyebrows were raised, a smirk dancing across his features, as he said, “You two seem to have caught up pretty fast.”
You were rubbing your foreheads, quietly smiling at each other. Gladio sighed. “I’m just glad at least someone gets to be happy in this eternal darkness.” Iris turned to her brother, a knowing look on her face.
Prompto perked up again very quickly, regaining his composure. “I don’t plan on letting (Y/N) out of my sight ever again.” You smiled the most genuine smile you had smiled in years.
Prompto. Your Prompto.
Taking his hand, you remarked, “This time, I won’t let you go so easily.” The look on Prompto’s face could have lit up the whole world, even now when it was shrouded in darkness.
Fisheye: Lonely Little | Walk the Dock | The Real Slim Shady | Excuse Me While I Fish the Sky
So excuse me as I still meander a bit down memory lane. Was kind of happy to find these way back in my Flickr photo stream… I bought this funny little Lomo Fisheye camera off some dude on the street replete with film and carried it around for a bit here and there. First two photos were taken by the St-Lawrence River which is across the street from me – there is this nifty floating dock where I sometimes go to sit and read (well, since they cut down my favourite willow tree 🌳 that is) and feed the ducks, and sometimes just to watch the sun setting. The third is from an outing with a friend to an abandoned building on the grounds of the former CN Rail shops in Pointe St-Charles. It was a sort of spur of the moment thing as we had been roaming around the neighbourhood and we ended up having to squeeze through a gap in a heavily padlocked fence – it was only after we left the site that we saw the “beware of the guard dog” posted warning sign!! I was not wearing proper shoes so was terrified walking around inside the building with open sandals on. Thing I love most is my super-elongated shadow to the far right in the photo – I’ve never been quite that tall ever again!!! Last one was taken from the plaza outside my office building – the two main buildings you see being my former office building - the IBM tower , and next to it, St-George’s Anglican Cathedral.
Eggsy’s just an ordinary London cop doing standard patrol and putting money in the bank for the flat he shares with his mum and sister—Dean cut his losses once Eggsy graduated from the academy and took his friends with him—when he gets an alert about a break-in into one of the House of Lord’s homes. The resident starts bemoaning about being robbed, but is cagey when Eggsy starts asking exactly what the thieves stole.
In less than twenty-four hours, the contents of the lord’s phones, laptop, and tablet reveal career-ending scandals ranging from cheating on his wife of thirty years to helping tip the PM election, along with some shady deals that involve shaking hands with international criminals. Eggsy’s pretty impressed and takes pleasure in being one of the cops to personally escort the man into custody.
Soon, there’s a series of this sort of thing happening—seemingly upstanding citizen or total slimeball who knows how to take advantage of the system getting exposed around London. Court cases follow. Some of his fellow officers grumble about these people being judge and jury, but most seem like “eh, well deserved.” Eggsy’s not going to look a gift horse in the mouth, but he’s pretty curious about who these vigilantes are and might, might want to help. Not like they need it.
By luck and wit, Eggsy digs up Chester King, former tailor shop owner who ran a more lower-end shop out of business, and was hit with charges of embezzling, extortion, bribery, coercion, and typical charges of white collar crime. His gut says it’s the same sort of thing he’s dealing with, only more personal. Who was the father? A Charles Harold Hart. And it looks like the son is still around, having taken over King’s tailor shop—
Eggsy sneaks away and chats Harry up, a fit bloke who seems like an ordinary tailor. But in time, it’s revealed exactly what’s going on, and Harry shows off the secret headquarters—secret headquarters—with some grouchy tech guy who scowls at Harry for bringing in “any young, handsome thing who HAPPENS TO BE A COP” and a cheerful set of people who like exposing London’s “finest,” including a lady the same age as he who takes him down at hand-to-hand. Harry’s office is plastered with a lot of his own “jobs,” and Eggsy’s a bit shocked to see Dean Anthony Baker, local drug dealer, on them.
And that’s how Eggsy becomes Kingsman’s man on the inside.
After Daryl separated from you, Sasha and Abraham, he tries to find his way back to you. In the middle of an apocalypse, his wedding ring is taken by someone else, but his ring is more than just a ring.
Request made by prince-of-edolas: Daryl x Reader are married and they’re leading the walkers away from Alexandria with Abraham and Sasha but the reader is in the car with them while he is on his bike. So the reader gets worried about Daryl when he suddenly takes off and he gets lost but encounters Dwight, Sherry and her sister. So Daryl tries to find a way back to her and their friends but they soon reunite in the end. Like the episode Always Accountable.
Hope you like it!!
Daryl x Reader
Warning: Bad word. (Sorry for the grammar mistakes)
Daryl pushed his motorcycle through the burned forest
where everything in sight was black, between the charred bodies of the walkers.
His leather jacket was torn and the blood from his wounds sprouted through
them, his body was hurt and aching, his energy draining as he breathed deeply
through his mouth, but then he could no longer push and the motorcycle fell.
Everything happened in a blink.
A few minutes earlier Abraham drove with you and
Sasha as he made a joke about how amazing it was to see a parade of walkers behind
them. The road had nothing but trees on both sides and a great horde of walkers
coming down the hill. Still driving his motorcycle, Daryl had turned in the
turnoff to his right toward a street of abandoned houses, but the silence broke
when the bullets whistled in the air.
It was there that he separated from you and your
“(y/n)?” He said through the walkie-talkie.
“Sasha? Abraham? Ya there?”
But the static returned the greeting and he turned it
off. Daryl removed the leather glove from his bloody left hand and wiped his
wedding ring until it shone with its own color. As a reminder of your momentary
separation, Daryl put it in the pocket of his pants. He had to trust you were
fine, and now his only purpose was to get back to you. That thought was the
only thing in his mind as he took off his leather jacket to wipe his wounds.
branch broke near there.
Daryl watched the place, hid his motorcycle under some
bushes, and slipped the strap of his pack on his shoulder; he picked up his
crossbow, and walked toward that noise. He had light footsteps in that silent
place, with his crossbow ready to shoot.
Daryl circled a tree and pointed at two women who
raised their hands in the air.
“You found us. Okay?” The woman with long
hair said. “Here we are. We owned what we took.”
Her gaze moved to a side, but when Daryl turned
around, a man knocked him down.
The next day, Dwight, who aimed
Daryl from behind with a gun pushed him out of the last bushes of the forest.
The sight in front of them wasn’t what Daryl’s captors were hoping,
and they walked past Daryl, looking in frustration to the other side of the
fence that held up the walkers who haunted the place. There were trucks, but
she was gone. They talked about following the plan they already had, but in the
middle of the exchange of ideas, Tina, the short-haired blonde girl fainted
over her sister.
The sudden commotion appeared
as an opportunity in front of Daryl’s eyes, and he took the large backpack off
the ground with his hands tied and ran behind the trees, successfully evading
the man’s shots.
need that, please!”
Daryl heard the woman’s screams without stopping,
running around the black trees until he was a distance far enough away to stop.
He jumped on a fallen log and hid behind it, biting the rope that held his
hands tied while the air he breathed didn’t seem to be enough at that moment.
Daryl gasped, exhausted, and took the walkie-talkie with his free hands.
“(y/n)? Ya there?”
Nothing, and then a walker growled in Daryl’s
direction. It had no skin, it was pure bones, with leaves and branches around
its ribs like a cruel joke. Daryl knelt in front of the duffel bag on the
ground and tried to pull his crossbow out of it, but it didn’t work on the
first try. It was stuck between the straps, shortening Daryl’s breath as the
walker drew nearer and nearer.
Finally, Daryl took it and took a turn to fall to the
ground, but the arrow flew directly to the front of the walker and it fell to
the ground and forever this time. The air around him seemed to be running low,
and Daryl stood up, tired and irritated.
Life didn’t give him a break, but then he looked down
and looked at the cooler inside the bag, with the word “insulin”
written on it.
The object they lost pushed a thought into his mind,
cold and distant as his hand felt the pocket of his pants.
ring was gone.
Sitting in that comfortable chair behind the desk in
that office, Sasha and you stood still for a moment, in silence and waiting.
Abraham walked down the hallway with his eyes lost, and his large body shook
with surprise as the walker behind the glass, trapped in the conference room
adjacent to that forgotten office, slammed its body against the crystal,
“How is this gallant still standing?” He
“He can’t get out.” Sasha said with a tired
voice, sitting in front of that crystal, and watched how Abraham tried to open
the door. “It’s locked. We’re fine. Stand watch or sleep? Your choice.”
Abraham looked at the walker and then at Sasha.
“I take the former. Do a little shopping maybe.”
He moved close to the desk you were sitting, took the
paper bin and pulled out the black plastic bag. Sasha stood up as you rested
your elbows on the wood, watching your ring in silence.
“Daryl will be fine, (y/n).”
She smiled softly at you to give you confident, and
you believed that because he was strong, but you couldn’t help worry about him.
Sasha gave you the walkie-talkie, wanting you to be the first to respond if
Daryl was able to communicate with you all.
And you took it.
You expected her to understand that you thanked her
for what she said and for what she had just done. And she did, and Sasha walked
to the corner of the place to try to sleep on the floor.
Be confident, you thought, he will come back. But the
knot in your stomach didn’t disappear.
“Drop the gun.” Daryl pointed them with his
crossbow, forcing them to rise from that fallen log where they were sitting.
“Drop it!” The man raised the weapon, but the tension disappeared
when he finally lowered it. “Give it to me.”
Daryl took the gun to put it in his pocket.
“I want ma ring back.”
Dwight reached into his back pocket and handed it to
him. This time, Daryl snatched it from his hand.
“I should shoot ya for takin’ it.” Daryl
held his crossbow high. “Came all this way. What ya got for the duffel? You
put me through too much shit just to just give it back. What ya got besides that
“Nothing.” Sherry said, looking at him with
a tired expression.
Daryl stared at Dwight, remembering part of last night through the blurred memories.
“What’s that thing you were carvin’?”
The man looked in his front pocket and pulled out a
nice figure carved in wood.
“My grandfather taught me-”
“I don’t care.” Daryl cut him off and took
the figure, and then he dropped their bag to the ground close to them.
“Take it. It’s all there. Good luck. Y'all gotta need it.”
But as he walked away, a noise made Daryl hide behind
a tree, watching the arrival of a truck that knocked down the branches in its
path. Three men got out of the truck, saying to Dwight and his people that they
should end it. Daryl listened, realizing that his captors didn’t want to leave
with that group, and noticed that more people were about to approach with
weapons in hand.
Those new men walked away for a moment, and Daryl saw that
Dwight and the girls were about to leave in the wrong direction.
“That way.” He said, pointing in a different
one. “Go. Go.”
He held the girl with short hair, helping her walk
through the forest to get away from there until they found a safe place to hide.
They ducked behind the bushes, and Daryl knew he could not handle that people
alone if they attacked, so he pulled the gun out of his pocket.
“Hey. Take it.” Daryl said, and Dwight took
it with a confuse look.
There was a walker trapped against a rock and the tree,
and Daryl shook the bush to attract the attention of a man, who walked towards
them and on the path of the walker that bit his arms. He screamed calling for
help and another man approached. He made a tourniquet on the man’s elbow and
made a joke before cutting off his friend’s arm with a machete.
Everyone breathed as the men walked away.
“We thought you were with them.” Dwight said
from the ground looking at Daryl. “We knocked you over the head. We tied
you up. We threatened to kill you. Why the hell did you come back?”
Daryl looked at them on the floor, vulnerable and weak
at the moment. He listened to the way the women spoke to each other,
“Maybe I’m stupid too.” Daryl said with his
voice low and hoarse, referring to what Dwight said earlier, about how stupid
they were to trust a community, thinking that they all fight together.
Sasha continued to stare through the window, with
nothing but an empty street and a pair of walkers grunting in the air. Your
heart kept beating fast, without giving you a break as the hours passed. The
tingle in your stomach was the worst companion in that long wait, and it was
playing with you, as if you were going to vomit from the nerves.
Sasha watched you, noticing that you are pale.
“Are you okay, (y/n)?”
You looked at her, your body falling on the back of
“Yes, thanks. It’s just that my stomach is tight
from the nerves.”
Sasha saw the worry in your face, which deepened as
the hours passed.
“Maybe you’re pregnant.”
You blinked at her, and your hand flew into the air to
ward off that thought.
“Of course not!” Your voice came out
sharply, and she chuckled.
“I’m just kidding.”
After a while your surprise disappeared and became a
laugh, something thoughtful as you looked tiredly at the desk.
“You really scared me.”
Sasha smiled though you didn’t see her do it, and she
walked to the desk and pulled the chair to sit on the other side.
“He’s fine, (y/n). I’m sure he is. That man is
just so stubborn, and not even the whole world will stop him from coming back
Her kind words made you feel calmer. Trusting that he
was strong and stubborn was the only thing that made that situation less
worrying. Just a little less.
“Thank you, Sasha.” You said, with all the
sincerity that was in your chest.
Daryl and the group walked through the forest, talking
about the safety people were looking for in that world, that those people would
give it all for believing they were. Dwight said that people would give
everything until they had nothing, and they would only exist.
“Nobody is safe anymore.” Daryl said.
“Can’t promise people that.”
“You can promise it to those people who wanna
hear it.” Dwight said back.
Suddenly, Tina ran to a burnt and melted greenhouse in
the middle of nowhere. She stopped, recognizing the two dead people encased in
melted glass inside. Dwight and Sherry blamed themselves because they burned
the entire forest without knowing that those girls were there. Between nothing
but rubble, Tina came up to leave some flowers for them, lamenting the loss of
two innocent lives. She knelt between the bodies and left flowers at their
But just then, the corpses awakened and attacked Tina,
breaking through the glass. She fell between them, screaming in pain as they
bit her neck.
Daryl ran to her and killed the walkers as Sherry
cried falling at her side.
“I’m so sorry, baby.” She said between tears
as she held Tina, because that was all she could do.
“Why did you come back for your ring?“
men dug a grave for Tina and the girls, Daryl stopped to see Sherry, who was
looking at an empty spot beyond all that pain. She didn’t look at him, and just
for wait for an answer.
"It’s just a ring for ya but it means somethin’
important to me.”
Sherry looked at him.
Daryl stared at her. He knew a promise can be broken, not by him, but by that dangerous world, so the ring was a symbol of a truth.
“It means I’ll love ma wife for the rest of ma life. It’s ma truth for her.”
The feeling she saw in Daryl’s eyes was too deep, a
bond with you, just as important as the one she had with her sister, and she
looked away. Daryl understood that feeling, and he looked at Dwight.
“How many walkers ya killed?”
“A lot. A couple of dozen at least.” Dwight
“How many people ya killed?”
“None.” He said throwing the earth from his
However, Dwight didn’t stop digging.
“Why haven’t I killed anybody?” Dwight didn’t
answer immediately, thinking about how his life was. “Because if I did,
there would be no going back, no going back to how things were.”
Daryl looked at him, with a little of hope in his blue
“I’m from a place, where people are still what
Dwight looked at him, breathing through his parted
lips. Tired, weak, vulnerable. He and Sherry were in that moment. But he
As Daryl uncover his motorcycle, he thought he could
take that group of two people to Alexandria, for them to have a new
opportunity, a new beginning. Nevertheless, they, after sharing a look, decided
that they would find their own way, although the way they were about to do it
wasn’t the right one.
Behind him, Daryl heard Dwight clicking off the safety
of the gun.
“Damn it.” Daryl growled and tried to take
his crossbow out of his body but it was too late.
“Give her the crossbow.” Dwight said holding
“Yer gonna go back?” Daryl breathed through
his parted lips. “Will ya be safe?”
Daryl didn’t look away, still breathing heavily.
“There ain’t no safe place no more.”
“Give her the crossbow.”
Dwight didn’t lose his composure, but he shot close to
Daryl to prove he wouldn’t hesitate to kill him, so Daryl took the crossbow out
of his body and gave it to Sherry.
They got on the bike, keeping an apologetic look.
“Sorry.” She said after throwing some
medical packs on the ground.
“You’re gonna be.” Daryl answered back.
After they left, Daryl had to walk.
In the middle of the way, he pulled his ring out of
his pocked, running his fingers over it to clean it again before placing it on
his finger, the place where it belonged. The growl of a walker on the floor
caught his attention, and Daryl knelt in front of a plaque buried in the
ground. Further from there, he found a truck hidden among the branches. “Patty” was
written on the license plate.
But there it was his way to get out of the place.
Daryl smiled slightly despite the bad time he spent
because he could finally come back with you.
After all, that was all he wanted.
The sound of an engine drew everyone’s attention, and
Sasha, Abraham and you went to the window to see the truck that stopped in
front of the building. The air returned to your body when you saw Daryl get off
the truck, finding his last name written on the door of the place where you all
hid. Sasha and Abraham smiled among them, relieved, as you walked out of the
place, ignoring the walker that hit the glass.
Your legs shivered slightly all the way down the
stairs but you made it. The sunlight shone on your face as you pushed open the
door. You felt weak and strong at the same time, as if you could breathe again.
Daryl walked over to you just as you did, and finally he wrapped his arms
around your shoulders to push you closer but it didn’t seem to be enough. Your
arms around his back held him against you as he breathed hard against your
“I knew you’d come back.”
Daryl pulled away to take your face in his hands, part
of his fingers touching your hair.
“Nothin’ or no one could have stopped me from
doin’ it, darlin’.”
And he pressed his lips against you. The need to feel
himself close to you took him to kiss you harder, deeper because of all the
time he was without you. He growled against your lips, without caring anything
else in the world. At that moment, it was just you and him.
At the entrance of the building, Abraham chuckled next
Hi MMFD fandom, how’s it going? Anyone home? ;) I’ve been sitting on this one for ages and ages, thinking I’d write more parts, then I suddenly asked myself - why? Just post what you got. so here you go.
Much much thanks and love to the bestest beta of all time - @madfatty and to my dear @how-ardently for the constant encouragement. If I write at all, it’s because of you two.
Story titles are from lyrics by R.E.M and Imagine Dragons.
“She’d spent the majority of her life feeling huge and cumbersome. Always awkward, never graceful. And look at her now, she’s practically athletic. And all it took was the end of the world.” This is story 1 of 2 in an extreme AU reality where things went horribly wrong after Finn went to Leeds…
It’s the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine)
Part 1 - “I’m Waking Up to Ash and Dust”
Rae Earl is running.
Down the street and through a broken fence, into the yard of the former textile factory, zigging and zagging between the fallen beams and rubble. Behind her she can hear them shouting to each other, arguing, trying to figure out which way she’d turned.
She’s good at running. Also climbing, and leaping. She tightens her grip on the two backpacks on her back, and jumps over a fallen piece of wall. Two steps and she finds a sunken hole behind some bricks, a dark spot, hidden from view. She crouches down and waits, trying to control her breathing. Her cheek feels like it’s on fire. It’s already swelling up, and will probably turn purple soon. Fucker took a serious swing at her face while trying to snatch her bags.
Despite the pain in her cheek and the uncomfortable position behind the rubble, Rae is quiet and still. She’s good at stealth and is an excellent hider as well.
The irony is not lost on her. She’d spent the majority of her life feeling huge and cumbersome. Always awkward, never graceful. And look at her now, she’s practically athletic. And all it took was the end of the world.
It was 7:00am on a Monday, and Clarke Griffin already needed another cup of coffee. The best place to get coffee in Walden Hollow, Clarke knew, was not the third wave espresso bar on North Avenue, nor the diner on Main Street. It wasn’t even Maya’s Pies, though Maya certainly brewed a decent cup. The best place to get coffee was a little bookstore half a mile from her house.
The bookstore didn’t have a sign, it didn’t even have a name. It was Bellamy’s place, and everyone in the town of Walden Hollow knew Bellamy. Bellamy Blake had lived there his entire life, and had inherited the small storefront from his mother. It used to be a simple cafe, with a few stools in the window and a smattering of mismatched tables, but when Bellamy took over he had expanded the space into the former candy shop next door.
The interior of the store still held a few tables and chairs, including a row of barstools along the window, but the majority of the space was reserved for the tall oak bookshelves that were lined along the back walls. Not many of the seats were occupied so early in the morning. Jasper and Monty, resident college aged troublemakers, were working on a “school project” at a table in the corner. Charlotte, a thing girl with blonde pigtails, loitered amid the shelves, bopping her feet to the music in her headphones. Bellamy’s morning had been extremely still and peaceful so far. Clarke broke the silence, breezing towards the counter as the chime on the door rang cheerfully behind her.
“Please, Bell,” she begged, “Please please please.”
I just saw a former student shopping in Victoria’s Secret 😳 I had a hat on so I don’t think she fully recognized me, she stared at me for a second with a weird look on her face and kept walking. So weird! 😑
At some point, I’d like to write a SuperPhantom fic (Supernatural/Danny Phantom crossover), but in the meantime, have a probable starting point from me. (Post The Ultimate Enemy for DP and sometime in the later seasons of SPN, but nothing with a more definitive time point than that yet.)
Visions: It was
supposed to be over. Azazel was dead, and Sam hadn’t had a vision since. Not
until he heard the girl’s pleas, at least, and found himself standing in the
ruins of a residential neighbourhood.
“Help me, please.” It was a soft murmur, more a repeated
prayer than even a tired plea at this point, but it carried easily in the eerie
Sam spun, looking for some sign of the girl. He could hear
her voice readily enough, but he couldn’t—
“Please. Please, help me.”
The girl could be anywhere. The street Sam stood in looked
like a bomb had gone off in the middle of it, but the collapsing buildings on
either side, leaning in opposite directions, suggested the real target had been
the former home—shop?—on the corner in front of him. It was more rubble than
anything else, as much dust as brick, and it had its fair share of twisted
metal that he assumed had once been supports. He could see a larger metal
structure beyond, though its remains didn’t resemble anything he recognized.
A few feet away from him lay the remnants of some neon
monstrosity, a sign that had once spelled something beginning with a giant
green F, but despite that, it must
have been someone’s house. From what Sam could see, this was a residential
neighbourhood. Partial fences interlaced the remains of the buildings, and
there was a bright snatch of fabric in the ruin of one home off to the right, a
cheery remnant of life before the destruction.
But the closer he looked, the less it seemed like an explosion.
There was no hint of a fire, no soot or lingering smell of smoke or acrid tang
of chemicals. The buildings looked like they’d been pushed aside, crumbling
like sandcastles swiped at by a child pretending to be a monster; it was more
the work he’d expect to see from a tornado or a plough wind, but the damage
wasn’t quite consistent with that, either. The worst of the damage seemed to be
directly at ground level, and it wasn’t consistently strewn like it should be
if wind were really the culprit.
Which meant, really, that he and Dean had every reason to be
here, even if he couldn’t smell a whiff of sulphur.
“I’m sorry, Danny,” sobbed the girl. “I’m sorry. Just,
please, help me.”
Sam started forward, picking his way through the rubble and
trying to pinpoint the source of the girl’s voice. “Keep talking,” he called.
“I’ll get you out of there.”
Silence, as if his presence had surprised her. Then, “No! Go
Sam altered his course, aiming more off to the left now,
toward what might have once been a garage based on its location but which now
resembled a pile of broken concrete. “It’ll be okay. I’ll get you out of there.
Just keep talking.”
He had no idea where Dean was. He couldn’t remember dropping
his brother off at the local bar or getting dropped off to do some research at
the library while Dean went to question people. Or maybe he’d gone to question
people while Dean had checked into a motel?
It was unnerving, that knowledge gap, but it wasn’t
important. Not right now. Not while someone’s life was on the line. If
something shifted just the wrong way….
“It’ll be okay,” he repeated as he examined the rubble,
trying to figure out how to move it safely. “You’ll be okay.”
The shriek came again, shriller this time, more desperate.
“No, no! I’m sorry! Just go away!”
Sam felt the trembling ground before he really realized what
he was hearing. He knelt to try to reassure the girl again—lie, most likely, but they were in the business of saving people,
and this didn’t look natural—and the vibrations became stronger, rattling
chunks of rock on the street and sending dust into the air as the rubble
shifted. “Try to brace yourself,” he called, hoping such a thing was possible.
“I’m going to get you out of there.”
The girl screamed again, a bloodcurdling screech Sam had
heard too often before, and he was blinded by green light.