gambling halls

Jesper, gesturing to Inej: She saved my life, you know. Two years ago. I was knifed at a gambling hall in the Barrel, and she carried me to the hospital on her back.
Wylan: Who stabbed you?
Jesper, gesturing to Inej again: She did. There was a price on my head, and she was a hired assassin. Stuck me in the gut with a shiv.

randomthingsthatilike123  asked:

Just curious-what do you think would have happened in Star Ears if Padme had survived?

I think Yoda would still want to hide and separate the children. I think Padme would refuse, and I hope Obi Wan would help–

Because wouldn’t that be fun? Padme, who ruled a planet, who challenged a senate, who married a horror, who can pick her own locks while handcuffed in the middle of a gladiatorial arena– now on the run with her two infants and only a heartbroken Obi Wan to back her up. 

(And R2D2, of course.) 

Padme’s always been the practical sort, even when royal, so she knows how to change a diaper and feed a child. She also knows how to fly the stolen ships Obi Wan and R2D2 hack into, how to bargain in thirteen intergalactic languages,  how to spot a bounty hunter in a crowd, and how to shoot a blaster with deadly intent. 

Padme was in love with someone who maybe never even existed– maybe once, there had been a boy who wanted to help people, who risked his life and his pod racer for someone else’s story, who made a young girl laugh in a sand-worn mechanic’s shop. 

She had been chasing him for years, that once good heart, but now with these bruises purpling and fading around her neck, she stops waiting. She starts running. Every time Obi Wan force-moves something over the next few weeks, she has to bury a flinch. 

But Leia is growing in fits and spurts, eating greedily and crying loudly. She stays in a sling on Padme’s chest when they move, Luke held snug in a sling around Obi Wan’s. Luke gets a whole head of thick brown hair while Leia’s is still patchy and bald, but he never matches his sister’s powerful lungs. 

When Padme had been sitting in her high senatorial apartment on Corsucant, holding Anakin’s sweaty hand, she had never imagined she’d be murmuring desperately soothing noises to her fussy daughter while she shot around a corner at stormtroopers, while R2D2 meddles with a ship’s blast doors behind her. 

Luke starts teething on a hot jungle planet where they hunker down for three weeks, sleeping in an abandoned old temple and catching the local wildlife for dinner. Leia takes her first steps in the belly of a Corellian freighter they’ve stowed away on. She wobbles between Padme’s outstretched hands and Obi Wan’s knees and boxes of smuggled luxuries. When she falls down, Obi Wan surges forward, heart in his throat, but Leia laughs. 

Padme lost a husband, but Obi Wan lost a brother and his whole order– his world, his people, his family. 

(One day, Leia’s whole home planet will vaporize and die under Vader’s–Anakin’s–command, and Obi Wan will find himself in the wreckage of it, the place Alderaan used to be, and he will recognize the sorrow shrieking into the Force.) 

But for now– Padme watches Obi Wan win them funds in gambling halls, grin into the teeth of a good flyer chase, sleep with Leia strewn over his chest, and Padme wonders if he isn’t more heartbroken here over Anakin than she is. 

Luke learns to walk a whole few months after Leia, but he falls less. He moves around the rim on mechanic’s shops, freighter cargo holds, makeshift camps on green planets, holding onto stable things and frowning seriously. Leia tries to leap from walking to running with no lead up time at all. She is not without scraped knees and scabby heels of her palms for years. 

They manage to spend a whole eight months on a little Outer Rim planet in a sleepy agrarian settlement. Padme and Obi Wan repair farming droids while R2D2 plays nursemaid (both Leia and Luke will be fluent in droid by the time they’re six). Luke and Leia play rough-housing games in the dry dirt– this is the first time they’ve stayed anywhere long enough to learn other children’s names. On day two hundred and thirty six they hear reports of stormtroopers so they pack up and hop on a transport at the nearest spaceport, not even bothering to check where it’s going. 

When they fly their own ships, they strap Luke and Leia into the same passenger’s seat and Padme and Obi Wan narrate. “Here you’ve got to always turn off the compressor before you activate the initiator…” “See the flashy blue light? Gotta have all the blue lights flashing…”

They hear reports of the empire growing. They see it– stormtroopers in more and more distant outposts, imperial ships passing them in the skies. Obi Wan lost the Jedi cloak years ago. They plate R2D2 in matte grey paint. Padme cuts her hair short and dresses in many-varied-layers like any refugee– because that’s what she is now, she and her little family.

Obi Wan has two lightsabers. He thinks Padme doesn’t know– he has the one he fights with, holding back stormtroopers and reflecting bounty hunters’ blaster shots, but he also has another one, tucked into the bottom of his pack. 

“It’s Anakin’s, isn’t it?” Padme asks one late night, tucked in a stony sheltered hollow on a planet that storms warm rain thirty-eight hours out of the day’s forty-two. Obi Wan gives a soft laugh and puts his hand over his eyes as Padme goes on, “The saber you’re hiding from me.” 

He nods, slowly, lets his hand fall. “I took it from him, when I left him for dead.”

“Not dead enough,” says Padme. “You’re keeping it in case yours gets lost?”

“Yes,” he says slowly. “Or in case… we might need another light saber, some day.”

Luke is bouncing a X-wing fighter toy along the wet pebbles. Leia is beeping something at R2D2, giggling over the rainfall. 

“Hm,” says Padme. “We might need another two.” 

The Home

Originally posted by clutterbucky

Request:  can you do a platonic avengers fic where the reader is 15 and she gets put into care but she doesn’t let the other avengers find out (she’s never lived w the avengers) but when peter visits the orphanage (with his school for like work experience/charity work or something like that) he finds her and then idk what could happen next u decide lmao thank you!!

Pairing: Tony x Dad!reader, Peter Parker x reader

Word Count: 2,596

Genre: fluff

Notes: the reader has powers very similar to kitty pride! This morphed into a Tony fic without me actually realizing it? Anyways I hope you like it:)

“Are you sure you don’t want to stay for dinner kid?” Tony asks as you both stand next to the front doors of the stark towers.

“Yeah, I’m sure. Thanks for the offer though!” You say feigning cheerfulness. Tony ruffles your hair one more time and says goodbye, before leaving you in the lobby by yourself.

You exit the building and get fully around the block before letting you happy facade drop. Suddenly the weight of the world was back onto your shoulders and you sluggishly made your way to the place you have called home for the last two months. Your parents were never the greatest people, your father was addicted to gambling and your mother found her happy ending at the bottom of a bottle, leaving you in an unhealthy and unstable environment. You found your silver lining in the Avengers Initiative, you had been dropped on their radar when you saved a little girl from getting hit by a bus almost a year ago now. The buses brakes went out and it had no way of stopping. Without thinking you ran to her and pulled her to you tightly as to lessen the blow on her but you somehow phase through the blow and the bus runs through the both of you without causing any injuries. Obviously there was people who recorded it without actually helping and the video went viral.

Within a week of the video being released, you came home to a Mr. Tony Stark sitting on your ragged couch. Thankfully your mother wasn’t home yet from her latest bender and and Stark were making polite conversation. That night he offered you a spot in the program and you accepted quickly before your father had time to ask any questions and you were soon swooped into the world of the avengers. You had the best team you could ever dream of, you thought joining the team would be an intimidating and scary thing but they were so accepting of you. You spent most of your time in the labs with Tony and Bruce as they studied your mutation but you spent your free time in the gym with Steve and Nat, sometime Sam and Bucky would stop by and you’d hang with them as well. You would go to school and go directly to the tower afterwards and stay as long as you possibly could before heading home, but that was before the accident.

Keep reading

Throughout its 90 years of life, the Hotel Monte Vista, located along Route 66 in Flagstaff Arizona, has served as a prohibition speakeasy, a gambling hall, and a meeting place for early Hollywood’s biggest stars. But in this relatively short time, it has become one of the most haunted places in the entire state.

In the 1940s, two female sex workers were brought from the nearby Red Light district just south of the train tracks. After their encounter with the client, he threw them from a third-story window. Guests in room 306 report feeling cold hands on their faces, awakening them in the night.

Room 210 seems to be haunted by a ghostly bellboy, who knocks on the door and announces the arrival of “room service!” Of course, room service was never ordered when he appears, and nobody is there when the door is opened. Actor John Wayne was the first to witness this ghost in the 1950s.

Laundry workers frequently report hearing the sound of a crying baby arising from the basement. There aren’t any legends or stories that would explain the source of the cries–no known ghosts, no unsolved mysteries–just the eerie, disembodied wailing that fills the basement.

The basement is also haunted by a Shadow Man, who stands over six feet tall and never says a word; he only makes people uneasy with his presence. Rumor has it that his ghost got lost in the tunnel entrance to the hotel’s basement, and now he has finally found an escape.

The spirit of an old-timey attendant haunts the elevators, even though they are electronically operated–but he can only be seen standing behind the occupants when they glance in the mirrors.

theladypirate  asked:

66 and 45 Phryne/Jack plz and thanks again :D

66. “I dare you!”
45. “Don’t tempt me.”

It wasn’t that the place was unsavory… it was simply loud. In very nearly every sense of the word. From the gaudy decorations consisting of red velvet drapes and plush chaise lounges. To the random hodgepodge of foreign pieces, from oriental rugs to egyptian hookahs and everything else between that lent to the decadence of the establishment. And mostly certainly it was loud due to the cries of the gamblers in the main hall, drunk and rowdy and hoping to win it big.

Past the gambling room, through more red drapes, music could be heard filtering in, along with the shouts of dancers and performers and those who were raptly watching them.

Despite the nature of the place, everything seemed clean, well lit and well taken care of. So no, it wasn’t exactly some unsavory club that he had been dragged to. It was–

“A den of iniquity,” Phryne supplied, a grin plastered to her face as if she could read his thoughts. “You can say it, Jack.”

Maybe she could? Jack frowned slightly.

“I will refrain from making any judgment until I have at least stepped inside. Especially since I am not currently on duty.”

“Good. Because I doubt an Australian Constable can do much policing in London. Come on!” She plowed forward, vivacious and giddy as always. And he followed her, just as he had followed her to England. Just as he had followed her since practically the day they met.

As soon as they entered the gambling hall proper, Jack found it more boisterous than originally thought. Especially when a loud roar built up from one of the roulette tables. All in all it seemed quite definitely a place Phryne would frequent, and he now very nearly regretted agreeing to let her show him ‘a night on the town’ as she had so blithely put it.

But then Phryne’s hand was slipping into his, and she was dragging him across the room to where there was music playing.

If the gambling hall was crowded, the dancehall was bursting. The band on stage were upbeat and lively, professional dancers stood on either end of the stage, swaying to the melody. The dance floor though was a crush of people, some pressed together in decidedly untoward ways while others were more rambunctious, feet flying and the ladies twirling in and out, their skirts fluttering.

“This is more like it!” Phryne said, leaning into his side, close enough so he could hear her over the music.

Jack wasn’t quite sure about that, but nodded encouragingly nonetheless. He spotted the bar lining the back wall, and pointed toward it. Phryne’s face lit up, and she looped her arm through his as they made their way toward it.

Drinks securely in hand, they managed to confiscate a small table in one corner. It afforded them a rather clear view of the stage and dance floor. Phryne was enthralled, of course, watching with rapt eyes as her foot tapped along with the music.

The women on the stage were lovely, their beaded skirts swaying this way and that with each movement of their hips, each flick of their heeled feet. Some moves were simple, others were more provocative and Jack was reminded of another time, another show.

“I dare say you could show them a thing or two,” he murmured close to her ear. She slowly swiveled her gaze toward him, a catlike grin curling her lips.

“Don’t tempt me, Jack.”

“I doubt you would be the only one who was tempted.”

Her eyes sparkle in approval, glittering in the low lights and never straying from his. “Dance with me.” She rises ever so slowly, one graceful hand extending toward him.

Jack flicked his gaze toward the dance floor again. A waltz was one thing, but this was something entirely different. He met her challenging gaze again.

“I’m afraid I don’t know the dance.”

“I dare you!” Her mouth was twitching, amused but determined and he knew there was no sense in arguing. There never was. Phryne is a force of nature, and all he can do is be swept up by her. So drained his glass and stood up, taking her hand in his.

In the blink of an eye, Phryne is pressed flush against him, her lips brushing the shell of his ear even though their corner is quieter and he could hear her perfectly fine before.  

“Besides, you’ll figure out the steps. You always do.” Phryne brushed her lips against his cheek in the whisper of a kiss, and then took a step back, heading toward the crowd of dancers.

This time, however, Jack does not follow Phryne. This time he takes her hand, and together they step onto the dance floor. Perfectly in sync.


Approach a Witch or a Wizard on the streets of any magical country outside North America and ask them what best defines the character of the AWC Mages, and you will get a variety of answers. In Parisian cafes, French sorcerers scoff at gauche American Mages, whose inelegant and brash magic values utility over form, while a world over, Chinese wizards and witches tell tales about American cowboys, drawing wands for epic duels over the fates of vast swaths of land. Proud and boastful, wasteful and generous, hard-working and ambitious, American Mages tromp across the world as perpetual tourists in the eyes of their international brethren.

And perhaps, in many ways, that is true. A certain ironic egocentrism grows in the soil of American Wizardry, drawn as it is from a thousand magical cultures and traditions, all blended together by the sorts of Mages who came from east and west to settle a land so far from their own homes – and that says nothing of the resilience of the many nations of Native Mages who were already here, and fought tooth and nail to preserve their cultures, values, and traditions against endless tides of invaders. The truth is there is no single American ideal - but there are a million American Ideas:

In solitary homes, far from nosy neighbors both mundane and magical, American Mages practice magics considered blasphemous in most countries, protected by the laws of the AWC so long as they do no actual harm. Meanwhile, in the back-alleys of New Orleans, an elderly witch runs a little shop that toes the very edge of the Statute of Secrecy, peddling second-hand charms and bits of hope to Muggle tourists and locals alike. Out West, in a hidden valley in the vast expanse of the Grand Canyon, a young man tends the Fire Bird roosts for which his family has been responsible for nearly a thousand years, while less than an afternoon’s flight away, his cousin wanders a neon-lit gambling hall, taking careful notes on probability and how the massive flows of wealth and probability effect background magic. Her notes will contribute to a study that might change how wizards around the world think of chaos and chance, or might be locked away by the secret agent who follows her down the strip, for the purposes of national security. Californian wizards trace spells on the surface of the bucking sea, and Virginian Mages pick the finest apples for enchanted ciders, while Floridian swamp witches sing songs older than the Everglades and New York arithmancers unwittingly safeguard the investments of a witch whom everyone believes is dead, but who actually bides her time in a cabin by a lake, plotting her return. She’s watching her nieces and nephews, preparing for the start of a new school year at The Allegiance Academy, practice the nail magic and knot magic brought over with slaves from Africa. Their cousin, who attends LAO, is doing something similar with paper and calligraphy, while her mother makes preparations for Ramadan, readying the potions she may not brew during the fast.

There is no single American identity any more than there is any single American Magic. Perhaps this, more than anything, is true: American Mages are fiercely independent, especially compared to the rest of the world. There is no room for the quiet, quaint, or quiescent amongst that loud and motley crowd, rushing to stake their claim on a land that fought back with tornado and disease, wildfire and wendigo. Revolution lives in the heart of every American Mage, both as the crucible that birthed their country and the fuel that makes it run.

Review: The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee

Genre: Young Adult, Historical Fiction
Rating: 5/5

Find it on Goodreads

Henry “Monty” Montague was born and bred to be a gentleman, but he was never one to be tamed. The finest boarding schools in England and the constant disapproval of his father haven’t been able to curb any of his roguish passions—not for gambling halls, late nights spent with a bottle of spirits, or waking up in the arms of women or men.

But as Monty embarks on his Grand Tour of Europe, his quest for a life filled with pleasure and vice is in danger of coming to an end. Not only does his father expect him to take over the family’s estate upon his return, but Monty is also nursing an impossible crush on his best friend and traveling companion, Percy.

Still it isn’t in Monty’s nature to give up. Even with his younger sister, Felicity, in tow, he vows to make this yearlong escapade one last hedonistic hurrah and flirt with Percy from Paris to Rome. But when one of Monty’s reckless decisions turns their trip abroad into a harrowing manhunt that spans across Europe, it calls into question everything he knows, including his relationship with the boy he adores.

Warning: May contain slight spoilers

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue is the first book I’ve read in the “funny historical fiction” genre.  And I think this is the most fun I’ve had reading a book in quite a while.  It’s hilarious and just a ray of sunshine in the sea of darker books I’ve been reading lately.

Keep reading

Rivetra Week: Modern


“Oh papa I’ve won again!”

Petra Ral let out a triumphant giggle as she placed her playing cards face up, revealing her winning hand. Feigning distress, her father put a hand over his heart and marked another tally next to her name on the pad of paper he was using as a scoreboard. In a chair by the fireplace, her mother rocked in a wooden chair, mending an apron.

“Perhaps we should send her off to the gambling halls, dear,” she suggested, not looking up from her work, “we’d have to work only half as hard.”

Petra laughed at this, shuffling the deck and asking if he’d like to play again. He did, of course.

A knock at their door caused them to pause and Mrs. Ral set down the her project with a slightly furrowed brow.

“Who would come at this hour?” she wondered, excusing herself from the living area to see what exactly was the matter.

Mr. Ral and Petra exchanged a curious glance.

“You don’t suppose Auruo has lost his cat again do you?” he wondered.

“If he has, I haven’t got it!” she shot back with a huff. It wasn’t likely to be true. Her childhood friend, Auruo Bossard was forever misplacing his pet due to the feline’s infatuation with the copper haired girl. It was trying to say the least.

Keep reading

Irregular Verbs in English

(Excerpt from Uncharted: Big Data as a Lens on Human Cuture)

English verb conjugation is, at first glance, a walk in the park. To form the part tense of an English verb, all you have to do is add -ed: jump becomes jumped. Hundreds of thousands of verbs obey this simple rule. When new verbs enter the language, they obey this rule by default. I may have never heard of flamboozing before, but I know that if you choose to flambooze yesterday, then yesterday you flamboozed.  

Except - much to the chagrin of English learners - for the pesky irregular verbs. Verbs like to know. Even before you read this sentence, you probably knew that we don’t say knowed. About three hundred in all, the irregular verbs - sometimes called strong verbs by linguists - include the ten most frequent verbs in the English language: be/was, have/had, do/did, say/said, go/went, get/got, make/made, know/knew, see/saw, think/thought. They are so frequent that, when you use a verb, there is a 50 percent chance that it will be irregular.

Where did the irregulars come from? It’s a long story. Sometime between six thousand and twelve thousand years ago, a language known to modern scholars as Proto-Indo-European was spoken. An astonishing array of modern languages, including English, French, Spanish, Italian, German, Greek, Czech, Persian, Sanskrit, Urdu, Hindi, and hundreds of others, descend from Proto-Indo-European. Proto-Indo-European had a system, known to scholars as the ablaut, that transformed a word into a related one by changing its vowels according to fixed rules. In English, the ablaut can still be seen in the form of subtle patterns among the irregular verbs.

Here is an example of one pattern: Today I sing, yesterday I sang, the song was sung. Similarly: Today I ring, yesterday I rang, the phone has rung. Here’s another pattern: Today I stick, yesterday I stuck. Today I dig, yesterday I dug. When the rules of conjugation die, they leave behind fossils. We call these fossils irregular verbs.

What sort of grammatical asteroid wiped out these ancient rules, leaving behind only the dry bones of the irregulars?

That asteroid was the so-called dental suffix, written -ed in Modern English. The use of -ed to signify the past tense emerged in Proto-Germanic, a language spoken between 500 and 250 BCE in Scandinavia.

Proto-Germanic was the linguistic ancestor of all the modern Germanic languages, including English, German, Dutch, and many others. Because it was a descendent of Proto-Indo-European, Proto-Germanic inherited the old ablaut scheme for conjugating verbs. And this worked fine most of the time. But occasionally, new verbs entered the language, and some of these didn’t quite fit any of the old ablaut patterns. So the speakers of Proto-Germanic invented something new, forming the past tense of these young, nonconformist verbs by adding that -ed. In Proto-Germanic, the regular verbs were the exception.

But not for long. Use of the dental suffix to mark the past tense was a tremendously successful invention, and it began to spread rapidly. Like any disruptive technology, the new rule started at the margins, serving funky-looking verbs that the ablaut could not. But once it established this beachhead, it did not stop. Simple and memorable, the dental suffix began to attract additional adherents, as verbs that had always used the venerable ablaut patterns started making the switch.

Thus, by the time that the classic Old English text Beowulf was written, about 1,200 years ago, more than three-quarters of English verbs obeyed the new rule. With its strength eroded, the old ablaut was now on the run, the upstart -ed rule everywhere nipping at its heels. More and more irregular forms defected over the next thousand years. A millennium ago, I would have holp you. Just yesterday, though, I would have helped you. 

This is a process that today’s linguists, with the benefit of hindsight, call regularization. And it’s still going on. Consider the verb thrive. About ninety years ago, a headline in the New York Times read “Gambling Halls Throve in Billy Busteed’s Day.” But in 2009, the Times ran an article in its Science section titled “Some Mollusks Thrived After a Mass Extinction.” Unlike those lucky mollusks, throve was a victim of the mass extinction of the ablaut. There is no going back. Once they are regular, verbs almost never irregularize. For every sneak that snuck in, there are many flews that flied out. 

Like the three hundred Spartans at Thermopylae, the English irregular verbs - three hundred, strong - have been resolutely holding off a merciless assault on their kind that began in 500 BCE. It is a battle they have waged every day, in every city, in every town, along every street where English is spoken. They have been waging it for 2,500 years. They are not merely exceptions: They are survivors.