how far is it to mars

1,000 Days in Orbit: MAVEN’s Top 10 Discoveries at Mars

On June 17, our MAVEN (Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution Mission) will celebrate 1,000 Earth days in orbit around the Red Planet.

Since its launch in November 2013 and its orbit insertion in September 2014, MAVEN has been exploring the upper atmosphere of Mars. MAVEN is bringing insight to how the sun stripped Mars of most of its atmosphere, turning a planet once possibly habitable to microbial life into a barren desert world.

Here’s a countdown of the top 10 discoveries from the mission so far:

10. Unprecedented Ultraviolet View of Mars

Revealing dynamic, previously invisible behavior, MAVEN was able to show the ultraviolet glow from the Martian atmosphere in unprecedented detail. Nightside images showed ultraviolet “nightglow” emission from nitric oxide. Nightglow is a common planetary phenomenon in which the sky faintly glows even in the complete absence of eternal light.

9. Key Features on the Loss of Atmosphere

Some particles from the solar wind are able to penetrate unexpectedly deep into the upper atmosphere, rather than being diverted around the planet by the Martian ionosphere. This penetration is allowed by chemical reactions in the ionosphere that turn the charged particles of the solar wind into neutral atoms that are then able to penetrate deeply.

8. Metal Ions

MAVEN made the first direct observations of a layer of metal ions in the Martian ionosphere, resulting from incoming interplanetary dust hitting the atmosphere. This layer is always present, but was enhanced dramatically by the close passage to Mars of Comet Siding Spring in October 2014.

7. Two New Types of Aurora

MAVEN has identified two new types of aurora, termed “diffuse” and “proton” aurora. Unlike how we think of most aurorae on Earth, these aurorae are unrelated to either a global or local magnetic field.

6. Cause of the Aurorae

These aurorae are caused by an influx of particles from the sun ejected by different types of solar storms. When particles from these storms hit the Martian atmosphere, they can also increase the rate of loss of gas to space, by a factor of ten or more.

5. Complex Interactions with Solar Wind

The interactions between the solar wind and the planet are unexpectedly complex. This results due to the lack of an intrinsic Martian magnetic field and the occurrence of small regions of magnetized crust that can affect the incoming solar wind on local and regional scales. The magnetosphere that results from the interactions varies on short timescales and is remarkably “lumpy” as a result.

4. Seasonal Hydrogen

After investigating the upper atmosphere of the Red Planet for a full Martian year, MAVEN determined that the escaping water does not always go gently into space. The spacecraft observed the full seasonal variation of hydrogen in the upper atmosphere, confirming that it varies by a factor of 10 throughout the year. The escape rate peaked when Mars was at its closest point to the sun and dropped off when the planet was farthest from the sun.

3. Gas Lost to Space

MAVEN has used measurements of the isotopes in the upper atmosphere (atoms of the same composition but having different mass) to determine how much gas has been lost through time. These measurements suggest that 2/3 or more of the gas has been lost to space.

2. Speed of Solar Wind Stripping Martian Atmosphere

MAVEN has measured the rate at which the sun and the solar wind are stripping gas from the top of the atmosphere to space today, along with details of the removal process. Extrapolation of the loss rates into the ancient past – when the solar ultraviolet light and the solar wind were more intense – indicates that large amounts of gas have been lost to space through time.

1. Martian Atmosphere Lost to Space

The Mars atmosphere has been stripped away by the sun and the solar wind over time, changing the climate from a warmer and wetter environment early in history to the cold, dry climate that we see today.

Maven will continue its observations and is now observing a second Martian year, looking at the ways that the seasonal cycles and the solar cycle affect the system.

For more information about MAVEN, visit:

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astrology ask thing
  • aries: what are you passionate about?
  • taurus: name 3 of your favorite books.
  • gemini: what was the last text you sent?
  • cancer: if you could choose your child's zodiac sign, what would it be?
  • leo: name something you love about yourself.
  • virgo: what's your #1 pet peeve?
  • libra: describe your dream partner.
  • scorpio: do you trust easily?
  • sagittarius: if you could travel to any place in the world, where would it be?
  • capricorn: what's your dream job?
  • aquarius: do you believe in aliens?
  • pisces: describe someone you love.
  • sun: describe yourself in 3 words.
  • moon: what's your favorite song?
  • rising/asc: how would you describe your style?
  • mars: are you easily angered?
  • venus: what's your aesthetic?
  • mercury: what color do you talk in?
  • jupiter: what moral do you live by?
  • saturn: what's your biggest fear?
  • uranus: are you rebellious?
  • neptune: share one of your dreams.
  • pluto: what's the biggest thing you've learned by far in your life?
  • lilith: do you have any guilty pleasures?
  • chiron: have you ever broken a bone?
  • ceres: are you a momfriend?
  • pallas: do you have a good relationship with your parents?
  • juno: do you believe in soul mates?
  • 1st house: are you confident?
  • 2nd house: if you could only keep one of your personal items, what would you choose?
  • 3rd house: do you like to read?
  • 4th house: what does your bedroom look like?
  • 5th house: name your favorite movie or show.
  • 6th house: do you participate in community service?
  • 7th house: if you could choose, what zodiac sign would you like your dream partner to be?
  • 8th house: do you believe in reincarnation?
  • 9th house: what's your favorite quote?
  • 10th house: are you good at public speaking?
  • 11th house: what sign(s) is your best friend/squad?
  • 12th house: do you like to be alone?
Doctor Who S10, a summary

• this doomed, fucked up planet was generously gifted with a ray of perfection by the name of Bill Potts

• gay love transcends the boundaries of space/time

• in order to truly help and understand people, grief and all negative emotions should be accepted as a natural part of being human, instead of treated as abnormal. I’m pretty sure Inside Out covered this

• Bill Potts’s smile could cure cancer

• talk shit, get hit

• the 12th Doctor is Doctor Disco or embarrassing space granddad. There is no inbetween

• loving your mother to the point that you’ll do anything for her is of course a good thing. Killing people for her might be taking it a bit too far

• I would die for Bill Potts

• 12 needs a hug

• fuck capitalism


• consent is so very fucking important oh my god

• fear! is! not! consent!

• Bill Potts is perfect have I mentioned

• have movies not stressed enough how dangerous creating dodgy shit in science labs can be

• where is UNIT when you need them jesus

• NASA’S gonna have a fun time explaining to the world why GOD SAVE THE QUEEN is written on Mars (mind you they’ll probably cover it up. Or UNIT will. Again, where tf is UNIT)

• Nardole has the self confidence we should all aspire to have

• it’s a shame none of us could have voted for Bill Potts tbh


• last series: ravens breaking our hearts. This series: crows breaking our hearts. Magpies rumoured for s11

• Bill Potts deserves so much better like????? She is literal perfection and she’s suffered so much?????? Why??????

• is there a support group for companions who have to wait a ridiculous amount of time for the Doctor to show up

• the Master is one of the Faceless Men, confirmed

• I’ve never been remotely interested in self-cest until now but I will literally sell my soul for an extra 10 hours of the two Masters dancing and flirting while the Doctor rolls his eyes in the background

• we’ve seen time/space transcending puddles, we’ve seen space zombies, we’ve seen the show call out whitewashing and homophobia, we’ve seen Mondasian Cybermen return, we’ve seen two Masters. What we haven’t seen is the s9 soundtrack lol

• seriously where tf is the s9 soundtrack

• also can we please have the s10 soundtrack immediately pretty please thank you and goodnight

12th House
  • The 12th house is very personal, and secluded. This is the house of secrets and hidden personalities. The signs, planets and asteroids residing here are internalised, and reside deep inside who they are. It takes people we trust the most to unlock them, and if someone does they explode like fireworks with profound energy and warmth. Unleashing the 12th house is like a private festival of emotions.
  • Sun in 12th: Someone with this placement hides their ego and self from almost everyone. They may come across as very shy and timid, as well as introverted. If this person opens up to you, you learn that there's confidence underneath the layers of quiet retreat.
  • Moon in 12th: Their emotions are hidden from view. They may be likely to take on everyone else's burdens because they never show they have any of their own. They feel so intensely when alone in their thoughts, and it can be scary for them sometimes. If they open up to you, it's a truly special thing. Their emotions and feelings are like the start of a new ink cartridge: powerful in colour, abundant when written out.
  • Mercury in 12th: They find it very hard to communicate, and probably only feel properly able to to very close friends or online where they can think about their responses. They'll pick texting over verbal confrontation any day. Speeches and arguments are exceptionally hard for them. Midnight conversations with them are beautiful, deep, and unique.
  • Venus in 12th: Love is a hidden gem. They don't often just give their heart to someone. Sometimes they may feel like they should, so can seemingly force themselves into crushes or flirting, but soon withdraw as they realise it doesn't make them happy. Love for them happens in the quiet of their mind, and the arms of their lover, rather than in the public eye. They are also lovers of poetry, reading, and artistic forms which make them think of how they feel themselves.
  • Mars in 12th: They hate to argue a lot. They'd rather work things out without stress or heated emotion. They're also very reserved in sexual affairs, preferring usually to keep the bedroom to serious relationships. If you ever get that far, you'll learn they're deep and intense. This placement may lash out when alone, and will pent up how they feel a lot like Moon in 12th, except it'll usually come out aggressively when alone.
  • Saturn in 12th: They feel so restricted inside. They make their own walls and barriers with their feelings and deeper selves that can stress them out and give them intense worries and stresses. They always feel the need to regulate their dreams and fears, often calling their deeper emotions irrational. Positively, they may tend to hide less of themselves from people.
  • Jupiter in 12th: These individuals no know boundaries deep within them. What they keep inside out of public view is a deep pool of emotion and dreams. They may be extensive dreamers, whether when asleep or awake. Sometimes their fears and anxieties are so strong, they aren't sure how to regulate and manage them.
  • Neptune in 12th: Extreme dreamers. They can often suffer from delusional thoughts of their fears, or being over anxious of parts of life. Neptune is at home here, and is free to gloss over and shroud whatever it wants in mystery and illusion. Someone with this placement may worry and overthink intensely, but never let this out into the open.
  • Uranus in 12th: These people want to revolutionise and change things, but feel unable to do so. They aren't sure how to project their want your change into the world. They can also want to change themselves a lot, and may manifest through several inner mentalities quite quickly to try and align themselves more with their life situations.
  • Pluto in the 12th: Destructive of their inner selves. They constantly change up who they are inside, sometimes without even wanting to. What is hidden inside them is a ball in a china shop. You may find they hide away their emotions on secret blogs or journals. The things they hard away from friends are often intense, which makes it even harder for them to open up.
Wordsnstuff's Writing Playlist
  • The Less I Know The Better : Tame Impala
  • Nothing's Gonna Hurt You Baby : Cigarettes After Sex
  • Ribs : Lorde
  • I Went Too Far : AURORA
  • Buzzcut Season : Lorde
  • My Blood : Ellie Goulding
  • How : The Neighbourhood
  • Female Robbery : The Neighbourhood
  • A Little Death : The Neighbourhood
  • The Beach : The Neighbourhood
  • Daddy Issues : The Neighbourhood
  • R.I.P. To My Youth : The Neighbourhood
  • Crybaby : The Neighbourhood
  • Fill In The Blank : Car Seat Headrest
  • Drunk Drivers/ Killer Whales : Car Seat Headrest
  • Angel Of Small Death And The Codeine Scene : Hozier
  • Vincent : Car Seat Headrest
  • Let's Dance : David Bowie
  • Life On Mars : David Bowie
  • Lady Stardust : David Bowie
  • Heroes : David Bowie
  • Rhythm Nation : Janet Jackson
  • Billie Jean : Michael Jackson
  • Gods & Monsters : Lana Del Ray
  • Sick Of Losing Soulmates : Dodie Clark
  • Cool For The Summer : Demi Lovato
  • Starboy : The Weeknd feat. Daft Punk
  • Say My Name : ODESZA feat. Zyra
  • Silhouettes : AURORA
  • Run : AURORA
  • Winter Bird : AURORA
  • Whirring : The Joy Formidable
  • Open Season : The High Highs
  • Brand New Moves : Hey Violet
  • Pure : Hey Violet
  • Guys My Age : Hey Violet
  • Bravado : Lorde
  • Into The Light : J. Views feat. Wild Club
  • Temporary Love : The Brinks
  • Love Lost : The Temper Trap
  • Viva La Vida : Coldplay
  • In The Night : The Weeknd
  • Acquainted : The Weekend
  • Greetings From California : The Neighbourhood
  • Let It Go : The Neighbourhood
  • Prey : The Neighbourhood
  • Ferrari : The Neighbourhood
  • Midnight City : M83
  • We Own The Sky : M83
  • Oblivion : M83
  • Could Have Been Me : The Struts
  • Kiss This : The Struts
  • Black Swan : The Struts
  • Put Your Money On Me : The Struts
  • My Machine : The Struts
  • Roll Up : The Struts
  • Emperors New Clothes : Panic! At The Disco
  • Golden Days : Panic! At The Disco
  • Vegas Lights : Panic! At The Disco
  • Girls/Girls/Boys : Panic! At The Disco
  • Back And Forth : Operator Please
  • Oh My! : Haley Reinheart feat. B.O.B.
  • We Don't Have To Dance : Andy Black
  • Homecoming King : Andy Black
  • Sippy Cup : Melanie Martinez
  • Mrs. Potato Head : Melanie Martinez
  • Mad Hatter : Melanie Martinez
  • Cry Baby : Melanie Martinez
  • Give Us A Little Love : Fallulah
  • Wiped Out! : The Neighbourhood
  • Single : The Neighbourhood
  • Froot : Marina And The Diamonds
  • Blue : Marina And The Diamonds
  • Starring Role : Marina And The Diamonds
  • Home Wrecker : Marina And The Diamonds
  • Sex Yeah : Marina And The Diamonds
  • Immortal : Marina And The Diamonds
  • My Girls : Animal Collective
  • Walking On A Dream : Empire Of The Sun
  • Haunting : Halsey
  • Colours : Halsey
  • Control : Halsey
  • Gasoline : Halsey
  • Sweater Weather : The Neighbourhood
  • Sex : The 1975
  • Love Me : The 1975
  • Cool Girl : Tove Lo
  • Moments : Tove Lo
  • Not On Drugs : Tove Lo
  • Influence : Tove Lo
  • One Last Night : Vaults
  • As You Are : The Weeknd
  • Dead and Gone : The Black Keys
  • Weight Of Love : The Black Keys
  • Take Me Out : Franz Ferdinand
  • Sugar Man : Rodriguez
  • I Wonder : Rodriguez
  • Crucify Your Mind : Rodriguez
  • Tear You Apart : She Wants Revenge
  • Come As You Are : Nirvana
  • SEX : Cheat Codes & Kriss Kross Amsterdam
  • Heavy In Your Arms : Florence + The Machine
  • Breath Of Life : Florence + The Machine
  • What The Water Gave Me : Florence + The Machine
  • Spectrum : Florence + The Machine
  • Nights In White Satin : The Moody Blues
  • No More Mr. Nice Guy : Alice Cooper
  • Poison : Alice Cooper
  • Ballad Of Dwight Fry : Alice Cooper
  • Every Breath You Take : Denmark + Winter
  • We Gotta Get Out Of This Place : Denmark + Winter
  • Wish That You Were Here : Florence + The Machine
  • Love Me Again : John Newman
  • Blame It On The Night : John Newman & Calvin Harris
  • Latch : Sam Smith
  • Arabella : Arctic Monkeys
  • Why'd You Only Call Me When You're High : Arctic Monkeys
  • Cornerstone : Arctic Monkeys
  • Do I Wanna Know : Arctic Monkeys
  • Beyond The Veil : Lindsey Sterling
  • Hold My Heart : Lindsey Sterling feat. ZZ Ward
  • Hollow : Tori Kelley
  • Take A Walk : Passion Pit
  • Somewhere Only We Know : Keane
  • This Is The Last Time : Keane
  • Reptilia : The Strokes
  • Machu Picchu : The Strokes
  • Wild Things : Alessia Cara
  • Here : Alessia Cara
  • TRNDSTTR : Black Coast ( Lucian Remix )
  • Into You : Ariana Grande
  • Sun Models : ODESZA feat. Madelyn Grant
  • Goodbye : Who Is Fancy
  • Rabbit Heart : Florence + The Machine
  • Bad Blood : Bastille
  • Perfect Illusion : Lady Gaga
  • Judas : Lady Gaga
  • Talk Too Much : COIN
  • Atlas : COIN
  • Run : COIN
  • The Pop Kids : The Pet Shop Boys
  • Plastic : New Order
  • Restless : New Order
  • Academic : New Order
  • Singularity : New Order
  • Tutti Frutti : New Order
It’s International Asteroid Day!

There are more than 700,000 known asteroids, but how much do you know about these rocky remnants left over from the birth of our solar system 4.6 billion years ago? 

Today, June 30 is International Asteroid Day. Here are some things to know about our fascinating space rubble.

1. A Place in Space 

Asteroids—named by British astronomer William Herschel from the Greek expression meaning “star-like"—are rocky, airless worlds that are too small to be called planets. But what they might lack in size they certainly make up for in number: An estimated 1.1 to 1.9 million asteroids larger than 1 kilometer are in the Main Belt between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. And there are millions more that are smaller in size. Asteroids range in size from Vesta—the largest at about 329 miles (529 kilometers) wide—to bodies that are just a few feet across.

2. What Lies Beneath 

Asteroids are generally categorized into three types: carbon-rich, silicate, or metallic, or some combination of the three. Why the different types? It all comes down to how far from the sun they formed. Some experienced high temperatures and partly melted, with iron sinking to the center and volcanic lava forced to the surface. The asteroid Vesta is one example we know of today.

3. Small Overall 

If all of the asteroids were combined into a ball, they would still be much smaller than the Earth’s moon.

4. Except for a Big One

In 1801, Giuseppe Piazzi discovered the first and then-largest asteroid, Ceres, orbiting between Mars and Jupiter. Ceres is so large that it encompasses about one-fourth of the estimated total mass of all the asteroids in the asteroid belt. In 2006, its classification changed from asteroid to  as a dwarf planet.

5. Mission to a Metal World 

NASA’s Psyche mission will launch in 2022 to explore an all-metal asteroid—what could be the core of an early planet—for the very first time. And in October 2021, the Lucy mission will be the first to visit Jupiter’s swarms of Trojan asteroids.

6. Near-Earth Asteroids

The term ‘near’ in near-Earth asteroid is actually a misnomer; most of these bodies do not come close to Earth at all. By definition, a near-Earth asteroid is an asteroid that comes within 28 million miles (44 million km) of Earth’s orbit. As of June 19, 2017, there are 16,209 known near-Earth asteroids, with 1,803 classified as potentially hazardous asteroids (those that could someday pose a threat to Earth).

7. Comin’ in Hot 

About once a year, a car-sized asteroid hits Earth’s atmosphere, creates an impressive fireball, and burns up before reaching the surface.

8. But We’re Keeping an Eye Out

Ground-based observatories and facilities such as Pan-STARRS, the Catalina Sky Survey, and ATLAS are constantly on the hunt to detect near-Earth asteroids. NASA also has a small infrared observatory in orbit about the Earth: NEOWISE. In addition to detecting asteroids and comets, NEOWISE also characterizes these small bodies.

9. Buddy System

Roughly one-sixth of the asteroid population have a small companion moon (some even have two moons). The first discovery of an asteroid-moon system was of asteroid Ida and its moon Dactyl in 1993.

10. Earthly Visitors 

Several NASA space missions have flown to and observed asteroids. The NEAR Shoemaker mission landed on asteroid Eros in 2001 and NASA’s Dawn mission was the first mission to orbit an asteroid in 2011. In 2005, the Japanese spacecraft Hayabusa landed on asteroid Itokawa. Currently, NASA’s OSIRIS-REx is en route to a near-Earth asteroid called Bennu; it will bring a small sample back to Earth for study.

Make sure to follow us on Tumblr for your regular dose of space:

Once upon a time…
in a kingdom far, far away…
there lived a young girl…
whose hair was made of gold.
When the people
in the village saw her, they said…
“Oh, how beautiful she is.”
And they showed her
a beautiful house…
on the planet Mars
And they said,
"Come and live here forever.”
And the young girl said…
“Oh, Mars is a planet
where life’s different…
safe, clean and pretty.”
But… But how do you get there?
Where do you find a taxi?
Which bus do you take?
Right? And how do you know
you’re there when you’re there?

And she went to live in the beautiful house.
And all the people loved her…
And she was very, very happy

But the people in the village
were very poor…
and every night, they crept
into the house where the girl slept…
and they cut off a piece
of her golden hair…
and they sold it for money.
“She’ll never even notice,”
they said.
And so, all the gold
was gone from her head.

And the people said…
‘Oh, she’s not beautiful at all.’
And they took her from
the beautiful house…
and they drove her
into the street.
And she went away…
and she never came back.
And soon,
people became hungry again…
and they went back into
the beautiful house…
Iooking for gold,
but there was no one there.“

—  Gia Carangi (GIA movie)
Guide: Astrology and love

Any signs can be compatible. Astrology does not have the final say in the succes of a relationship. Only you and your partner can decide if you want it to succeed or not. Astrological compatibility is just an indicator of how easy or hard it will be.

Traditionally Fire signs (Aries, Leo and Sagittarius) are compatible with air signs (Gemini, Libra and Aquarius) and other fire signs.
Air signs are compatible with fire signs and other air signs.
Water signs (Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces) are compatible with earth signs (Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn) and other water signs.
And earth signs are compatible with water signs and earth signs.

There’s also the matter of opposite signs. They are naturally drawn to each other and there is usually a lot of attraction between them. These are:
Aries & Libra
Taurus & Scorpio
Gemini & Sagittarius
Cancer & Capricorn
Leo & Aquarius
Virgo & Pisces
Though their elements are compatible, the opposite signs are each other’s counterparts and it’s really all or nothing when they come together. It can either be the best there ever was and ever will be, or a total fiasco. Pretty much the same thing, albeit less powerful, goes for Same-Sign couplings.

To know if you’re compatible, you should look at your love interest’s chart and compare it to yours:

Your Sun tells you about very basic compatibility, but is not by any means a definitive yes or no. If anything, compatible sun signs are a nice bonus. It’s your essential personality, the one you probably identify most as. 

Your Venus is by far the most important placement in relationships. It’s never more than two signs away from your sun sign. It tells you about what you’re looking for in a partner. It’s also an indicator of how you attract love and act in a relationship. People may find they act rather differently when they’re in a relationship. Knowing your and their’s venus may help you understand why you do the things you do for love. Your venus should be compatible with your partner’s mars and vice versa.

The Moon represents what men find most important in a woman, though not necesarily in a romantic way. Look at your venus for this. It’s the sign that tells all genders  their deepest thoughts, fears and emotions. Having the same moon sign often results in great relationships with deep connections and emotional fulfillment, though it might also be very interesting if your moon sign is or is compatible with your partner’s sun sign.

Your Mars represents what women find most important in a men, though not necesarily in a romantic way.  Look at your venus for this. Mars takes charge of sexual attraction. It’s the planet of passion, but also of how you express anger.  Your mars should be compatible with your partner’s venus and vice versa. 

Mercury is connected to communication, reasoning, intellect and awareness. It’s not all that important in romantic compatibility, but people with compatible or the same mercury signs will have an easier time communicating with and understanding one another. 

Finally, you might want to take a look at your Juno. You need your birth time to calculate it. Juno was the Roman godess of marriage. This placing is not near  as important as venus, but it will tell you what you need in a relationship to grow as a person rather than what you may want.

I think that’s pretty much it. If you have any other questions, my ask box is always open.

Astronomy From 45,000 Feet

What is the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, or SOFIA, up to?

SOFIA, the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, as our flying telescope is called, is a Boeing 747SP aircraft that carries a 2.5-meter telescope to altitudes as high as 45,000 feet. Researchers use SOFIA to study the solar system and beyond using infrared light. This type of light does not reach the ground, but does reach the altitudes where SOFIA flies.

 Recently, we used SOFIA to study water on Venus, hoping to learn more about how that planet lost its oceans. Our researchers used a powerful instrument on SOFIA, called a spectrograph, to detect water in its normal form and “heavy water,” which has an extra neutron. The heavy water takes longer to evaporate and builds up over time. By measuring how much heavy water is on Venus’ surface now, our team will be able to estimate how much water Venus had when the planet formed.

We are also using SOFIA to create a detailed map of the Whirlpool Galaxy by making multiple observations of the galaxy. This map will help us understand how stars form from clouds in that galaxy. In particular, it will help us to know if the spiral arms in the galaxy trigger clouds to collapse into stars, or if the arms just show up where stars have already formed.

We can also use SOFIA to study methane on Mars. The Curiosity rover has detected methane on the surface of Mars. But the total amount of methane on Mars is unknown and evidence so far indicates that its levels change significantly over time and location. We are using SOFIA to search for evidence of this gas by mapping the Red Planet with an instrument specially tuned to sniff out methane.

Next our team will use SOFIA to study Jupiter’s icy moon Europa, searching for evidence of possible water plumes detected by the Hubble Space Telescope. The plumes, illustrated in the artist’s concept above, were previously seen in images as extensions from the edge of the moon. Using SOFIA, we will search for water and determine if the plumes are eruptions of water from the surface. If the plumes are coming from the surface, they may be erupting through cracks in the ice that covers Europa’s oceans. Members of our SOFIA team recently discussed studying Europa on the NASA in Silicon Valley Podcast.

This is the view of Jupiter and its moons taken with SOFIA’s visible light guide camera that is used to position the telescope.  

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Eventually (Jason Todd x Reader)

Request: Could you write a Jason Todd x Reader where they just have a nice day at home with cooking and talking and doing cute things and at the end of the day jason says how thankful he is for having the Reader as hig s/o? Just lot of fluff.

Just a disclaimer I am bad at fluff, but I am trying super hard, I hope you still like it

Originally posted by spacescoups

The smell of Mexican food swarmed your nose as you entered the front door to the apartment you share with Jason. You knew immediately he was doing your favorite thing in the world: cooking. His enchiladas are the best.

“Is there something I forgot about? It’s not our anniversary, I know it’s not your birthday. Is it my birthday?” You asked kicking off your work pumps.

Keep reading

her eyes are filled with stars. i spend my time trying to connect the dots and find the constellations floating around her irises.
i found the planets on her body and in her soul. similar to mercury, at first you may confuse her for stars. just like the roman goddess venus, she is known for her love and just like the earth, she is life. she breathes beauty into the world with every exhale. so close, yet so far away. just out of reach, as mars seems to be. she and jupiter have the shortest days of all; perpetual sleepiness sometimes seems to be her defining trait. the curls of her hair are more captivating than saturn’s rings, and all the ice of uranus reminds me of how cold it was the night of our first kiss. and like neptune, she is far from her sunshine.
she is more than the solar system. she is entire universes, a million galaxies in one beautiful girl.
—  galaxy girl

Legendary Defenders {A Voltron Playlist}

[ L I S T E N ]

Heroes - Måns Zelmerlöw  ||  Believer - Imagine Dragons  ||  Young Volcanoes - Fall Out Boy  ||  Battle Scars - Paradise Fears  ||  Miracle Mile - Cold War Kids  ||  All These Things That I’ve Done - The Killers  ||  Hey Brother - Avicii  ||  Top of the World - Greek Fire  ||  Warriors - Imagine Dragons  ||  Fire Alarm - Castlecomer  ||  Apple Pie - Rafferty  ||  Fight ‘Til The End - Jack Savoretti  ||  Glitter & Gold - Barns Courtney  ||  How Far We’ve Come - Matchbox Twenty  ||  Kings and Queens - Thirty Seconds To Mars

A playlist made for @stargazershiro‘s Voltron Positivity Day! I really enjoyed making this, and I hope that all of you enjoy listening to it! 

How I Went From Loving To Hating “The Expanse” In One Week

Here’s a probably long, rambling rant about The Expanse.  Cards on the table, I haven’t read the books and I’ve stopped at Season 2 Episode 5.  Other than what my husband’s told me about what he’s read in the books, I haven’t delved into any of the fandom or history of the series.  This is just me ranting about what I consumed via the TV series alone.  Buckle up.

So I’m a sci-fi nerd.  I like Star Wars, Star Trek, Stargate, Battlestar Galactica…. basically if it has a Star in it, I’m a fan.  So people are telling me, I need to watch The Expanse.  It’s a new show on SyFy (that’s how they spell it now, right?) and it’s really good!  I’m nervous about falling in love with a new show–Firefly, Timeless (cancelled, and then uncancelled?), SGU, Continuum (but at least they got a chance to tie everything up)–not a great history of sci-fi shows sticking around long term.  But then I was hunting for something new to watch these last couple weeks and finally decided to try The Expanse.

Keep reading

Can we talk for a sec about how far our baby has come? She’s headlining as a solo artist for the Billboard Music Awards, along with her fucking idol Ed Sheeran! Her name is between Bruno Mars and fucking Celine Dion! I don’t know why I’m so fucking emotional about this 😭😭😭

anonymous asked:

Hey! I happened upon your blog last night and I looovvvee your work! You have an amazing talent - please continue this! I was wondering if you could write a piece about Sirius befriending a shy girl as Padfoot and then falling in love with her when you have the time. Super fluffy!!!

This is a bit rushed but oh well, hope you like it!


Sirius took a drag of his cigarette, his eyes fluttering closed with relief as the smoke billowed from his lips and out of the dormitory window he’d cracked open. He was filled with a tangle of turbulent emotions and the bitter taste was the only thing numbing the pain.

Merlin’s beard, he was a child.

His brother was a kid- barely fifteen, and he was already getting involved with known death eaters. Sirius had been trying to warn him, reason with him, but Reg had just shrugged him off, and soon the partaking of words had turned into the spitting of insults. Sirius had never meant for it to end like this, and his hand shook with barely concealed anger and hurt as he took another drag. If Reg refused to listen to him then fine, he could screw up his own life.

“For God’s sake, Sirius.” He hadn’t even heard Remus enter the room, but he could hear the irritation in the quieter boys voice. “I told you not to smoke in here. It stinks the place out.”

Sirius didn’t even bother to turn around; he gazed distantly at the afternoon sky, feeling emotionless and detached.

Keep reading

Finding life on Mars has captured the imagination of generations, but experts still aren’t sure what exactly we’re looking for. The Danakil Depression in Ethiopia, with a landscape of boiling pools of water and mounds of salt and sulfur that itself seems extraterrestrial, might offer some clues. Despite being one of the lowest, hottest and driest places on Earth, the region is host to extremophiles–– microbes that thrive in these inhospitable conditions.

Dr. Felipe Gómez Gómez of the Centro de Astrobiología in Madrid, who is working on isolating and studying these bacteria, believes learning to identify life in extreme environments here on Earth is the key to identifying any alien life that might be out there.

“What is life? What are the limits of life? Scientists don’t agree on what is life,” Dr. Gómez said. “If we find life on Mars, would we be able to recognize it? We don’t know.”

These organisms might also provide insight into how potential life-forms might survive in the sparse environment of Mars. From the article:

These simple organisms can survive with a “very small battery,” and were probably among the first bacteria on Earth, Dr. Gómez said. “That is what makes them so interesting from an astrobiological point of view.”

Organisms such as chemolithotrophs don’t require traditional means of sustenance like light and organic compounds and instead use inorganic compounds such as sulfide, hydrogen and ammonia as energy sources. Though they might be a far cry from little green men with antennae, they could offer us a more realistic idea of what to expect if and when we finally make “first contact”.

Read more at The New York Times here.


NASA’s MAVEN Discovers How Mars Lost Its Atmosphere

“The good news for us, mind you, is that the magnetic field here on Earth shows no sign of ceasing anytime soon. The dynamo in the core may do things like flip and reverse, swapping north-and-south magnetic poles, but we should continue to stay protected from the solar wind far into the foreseeable future: for billions of years (at least) to be sure. We could, conceivably, one day suffer the same fate as Mars, but our mass, our rotation and our active, dynamic core should keep the Earth’s magnetic field in business for at least as long as the Sun shines!”

If you had taken a trip to our Solar System four billion years ago, you would have found two worlds with liquid water oceans, temperate atmospheres and all the conditions we believe are needed for life. Earth would have been one of them, but Mars would have met all those criteria, too. It was long suspected that something happened to Mars around a billion years into the Solar System’s history that caused it to lose its atmosphere, something that should still be going on today. Thanks to NASA’s Maven mission, we’ve measured this atmospheric stripping by the Sun for the first time, and we’ve reached a few incredible conclusions, including that in about two billion years, Mars will be completely airless, and that if we were to terraform Mars today, it would hang onto this new atmosphere for millions of years.

Come get the full story of how Mars lost its atmosphere, and learn what NASA’s Maven mission has taught us so far!

Elorcan Werewolf AU part 7

Sometimes following your heart means losing your mind 

Elorcan Werewolf 7

Lorcan saw red.

He felt his body tear from him as he lost all control. He felt raw power course through his veins as his wolf’s side raged and snapped the reins. He felt pure wrath and hatred, violence roaring through every cell and pore.

His bones and muscles shifted, the female on top of him screaming. Lorcan had been called a great many things in his life, many of them along the lines of the Executioner, Death’s Right Hand, or the Devil’s Mind. But the most known moniker of them all was the Great Silencer.

And that was exactly what he did to Essar. His wolf’s claws tore through the female’s neck without a second thought, blood spraying over his black sheets. Her shrieks of protests died at her lips, and Lorcan watched in satisfaction as her body collapsed, limp and cold. His wolf nudged the woman off the bed, and snarled in content as the remains of her skin hit the floor with a thud.

She had tested him, and Lorcan had given her his answer.

If years of turning down her offers was to be ignored, then she had every right to expect this foreseeable action in which her blood no longer circulated. It didn’t matter if the female was a Lycan with royalty spinning in her veins, a kind blush always smoothed over those pale features for him.

It didn’t matter as long as Essar wasn’t his mate, the enchanting creature that was Elide Lochan.

Essar had tried to encourage the notion of love when he had desired nothing more than meaningless sex to satisfy his wolf. Essar had been the one female the royal courts had chosen to pair him with in case all went wrong with his mate. Essar had tried to tame him, a beast who breathed in death and destruction.

Yet, now that Lorcan had found his mate, Essar had approached him, weeping tears of sadness his heart had not flinched at. The doe-eyed female had attempted to part with goodbyes that involved physical intimacy, snapping his wolf into action. At this point, his wolf and him could only agree on one thing: only their mate could touch Lorcan. Only their mate could love him. Only their mate could accept him.

It was only Elide. It was all Elide. Elide, Elide, Elide.

His Lycan thrashed, eyes narrowing and nose twitching. The scent of Elide was right under his nose, and a hint of pink fabric hung loosely around his neck. Lorcan vigorously shook his head and watched the collar fly across the room. He would not rest until his mate was in his arms. A piece of her was not enough. He needed all of her, whether as a wolf or human.

His Lycan burst through the door, and loosed a howl as a half-Lycan mutt and an Alpha bitch stood in the halfway, swords drawn. The mutt’s sword cleaved through the air at a vertical arc, and his wolf easily slipped through the blow with years, centuries, and eons of experience. His teeth tore through the other female’s arm, clamping down on the hard flesh. He easily tossed the Alpha’s body against her Beta’s, not bothering to watch as they slammed against the wall, weapons clanging noisily to the floor.

His wolf picked up speed as he raced down the hallways, Elide’s scent still hanging in the air. Lest he claim his mate, his own Alpha that was Rowan Whitethorn emerged from another hallway, gripping a handful of wolfsbane, magical gloves protecting his hand.

Did rutting-Rowan-Whitethorn think a few stalks of wolfsbane could keep him from his mate?

“Lorcan,” Rowan warned, his voice cut with hardened wind. “Control. Elide would not want to see you like this.”

Lorcan’s wolf did not like Rowan’s tone, and leapt towards him. Only Elide could decide what she wanted him to do and see after centuries of waging bloodied, pointless wars that would have blinded a lesser man.

Rowan swore and agility dodged his first swipe.

“Don’t make me do this,” his Alpha growled, holding up a strand of wolfsbane in front of him, thinking it would be enough.

Lorcan summoned the darkness, and before his ages-old friend could blink, he slammed his power that was old as time itself onto the Prince of Lycans.

His wolf loosed another howl, demanding that his mate return the call.

Only silence persisted in the hallways as Lorcan chased the scent of his mate out into the gardens. The moon taunted him as he wove through the trees, into the woods, his darkness ebbing out, demanding the presence of his sweet Elide Lochan.

His mate.


A whimper that did not belong among the dropping trees that casted demented shadows and creeping insects that swarmed the woods had his pace slowing down drastically. Lorcan crept through the branches, his eyes narrowing into a small, white figure in a grassy clearing, bordering the little river than ran through Lycan property.

The scent of his mate empowered his nose, and his wolf barreled through the trees to his mate. The white wolf lifted her head in response, her almond-shaped eyes widening in surprise. Her own ankle was bent at an odd ankle, and Lorcan bounded around his mate, encircling her small frame.

Elide’s wolf peeled back her lips and gave him a snarl that had his own wolf snapping in response. Rejection spun in those beautiful eyes, and his wolf pawed at the grass, bending its head in silent submission. His mate curled into a smaller ball, tail flicking over her paws in defense. Never before had shame flooded Lorcan as he watched the white wolf turn her head away from him, those ears flicking back as a means to dismiss.

Lorcan was having none of it. He slowly crept forward, and when he was directly in front of his mate, he huffed. Elide turned her head to stare at him, her nose twitching in disdain. His midnight wolf bent his snout down to the nape of his mate’s neck, and took a gentle lick of her soft fur. The white wolf let out a strangled noise as he continued licking around her neck and down her back, smoothing the ruffles in her fur.

As soon as his mate let out a hiss, telling him to back off, Lorcan sat on top of Elide, covering her small, quivering body with his large, muscular one. A small part of him revelled in their differences, of yin and yang. He could stay like this forever, his mate in his embrace. However unwilling.

He rested his snout along the top of her head, a deep growl etching itself from his throat. Mine.

Elide shook her head, attempting to move his head, but Lorcan did not budge. He gently stroked the mating bond that shone clear between them at their close proximity. His mate bristled in response, shoving away the bond from her. Lorcan snarled in response, gently nipping her ear. Centuries and eons of waiting for a chance to prove that he had a heart—to prove the regret at each body that laid at his feet because of him—to prove that he was not Death’s right hand, but a creature of life and listener to the Moon Goddess.

Elide let out a little noise and he rubbed his head against her cheek. This creature was his and he was not going to let go of her, no matter how far she ran nor how well she hid.

His wolf rearranged himself into a more comfortable position to make sure he wasn’t completely squashing his mate. Elide immediately tried to bolt off, but Lorcan merely caught her tail between his teeth. His little mate immediately twisted around, snapping her canines at his head. Her stance was purely aggressive, and she was even leaning on that ruined ankle of hers. Lorcan immediately loosed her tail, and leaned down, licking her ankle. The darkness enveloped around the marred skin, bracing and fixing. To mend.

Elide promptly collapsed against the Earth, her beautiful face contorted into a pained expression. Lorcan immediately knew what he was going to do as he started to wriggle himself under her body. He carefully slid himself fully under his mate, a noise of distress slipping from her throat. When her body was completely shouldered over him, Lorcan lifted himself onto his hind legs. His own veins buzzed with fire and flame at contact with his mate, and he could feel Elide’s own body strumming with heat. The darkness has no longer clouded mind, and Lorcan felt calm, content—for once.

No longer did his magic probe and demolish the surroundings where sections of grass lay yellow and dead, trees de-rooted, branches bent and protruding against other figments of nature. No longer did his magic spin to destroy. Instead, his magic choose to cocoon around Elide, pasting itself to her ankle and stroking slivers of gentle strokes behind her ears. His magic whirled in great streams around them, protecting and serving the small body on top of him, and masking their scent.

His magic soothed and bent in worship at the warm presence on his back.

Even Lorcan’s wolf knows that he cannot break the Pack Covenant by returning Elide back to her house with his body in full Lycan form. He cannot return back to his own damned house where other males and females will want to take his mate away from him. So he carries his mate to the one place where no one will dare find him.

Where no one will disturb him. Where no one except him knows.

Elide does not complain as the darkness bends over her, worshipping her presence, stroking her fur gently, sliding over her as a warm blanket. His own wolf cannot wait to touch her, and to hear sounds of sweetness escape from her throat.

Lorcan knew that Elide had fallen asleep when she stopped twitching in small movements he found endearing. Gentle puffs of air escaped from her snout, fueling his magic’s power to serve something worth more than his entire life. Lorcan can feel his own power surging as the night descended upon them, the darkness thriving in the sheer cover of the moonshine, an element considered his to own and slave to his will.

His wolf stalked through the forest at a brisk pace until they reached the very middle of the wilderness, a large, looming cave beckoning them under a cover of darkness. The crickets no longer chirped their harmonious melody, and the soft patter of dew no longer dared to journey to the grasses.

Not where a killer has made his asylum.

Here, Lorcan’s beast had taken refuge, seeking company in isolation and silence. Here, the echo of his loneliness reflected his pain of regret lining every second of his heartbeat. Here, he sat in stony monotony, memorizing the outline of his mate’s face and breathing in the remains of her scent.  

His wolf strode through the cave, ignoring the crunching of bones underneath his paws, and then gently lowered his mate onto a soft bed of leaves and flowers that grew only in the pure, utter darkness. The nature here grew and spurred into creation from Lorcan’s magic of ruination; because demolishment meant the development of dark beauty.

He was not full royalty like Prince Rowan Whitethorn.

He was the King of Death, and Elide would be the queen of decay.

If she would have him.

Lorcan circled around his mate’s body, watching the rise and fall of her chest. Elide slightly stirred when he sniffed her ankle, spotting marrings of a weapon he knew all too well: chains. Lycans would often be strapped to walls during their first couple shifts, their wolf side unable to be reasoned with.

But Elide was not a Lycan.

Meaning someone had intentionally tried, and successfully hurt her.

A calm, thunderous rage pulsed around him. His canines slipped out, needing to somehow to protect the fragile white wolf in front of him.

Lorcan situated himself over his mate, soaking in the warmth her body offered while offering his own. They were destined by fate, and for once, Lorcan finds himself not minding simply belonging to another. Slowly, he licked her face, needing to see those sweet eyes.

Her eyes flickered open, filled with emotions Lorcan would wish on an enemy, reserved for a foe. Those shining orbs gleam with hatred and disgust, causing him to recoil. The very look sent a sharp jab to his heart, a more fatal blow than any silver blade. He immediately scrambled away from his mate, staring at the wall. As his hind legs bend underneath him, his skin prickled, knowing that the white wolf is staring intently at him. Judging him.

His ear twitched at the sound of his mate shuffling in the makeshift bed that had become his sanctuary in the darkest nights.

His dark wolf rifled through the corners of the cave walls, pulling a long T-shirt into his mouth. He trotted back to his mate, who is still gauging him with an unreadable expression, head slightly cocked.

Lorcan decided that he couldn’t have his mate simply continuing to stare at him with that look. Biting down on her behind as gently as he can afford, a teasing affection only reserved for her, and her only, Lorcan loosed a small howl, demanding Elide return his call.

Elide loosed a yelp, and instead crawled away from him. His wolf whined in protest, lowering his head, and followed her across the cave floor, dragging the fabric dangling from his mouth.

The lovely white wolf hauled herself onto her hind legs and lifted her head, as if she were a queen and he were nothing more than a peasant. Quick as lightning, she snagged the shirt away from him, holding it in front of her like a barrier. The popping of joints and cracking of shifting limbs filled the solemn air, and in a flash, Elide tossed the shirt over her pale body.

Lorcan can only stare at her exposed skin, his tongue falling out of his mouth. The curve of her collarbone, and the long, pale legs that run from underneath her waist the shirt barely covered—

Elide ran a hand through her hair, fingering out the knots. He watched, utterly transfixed.

After a second of staring at him with accusations flooding her orbs, she finally said, “Hello, Lory.”

He dipped his head in shame, Elide crossing her arms.

Lorcan walked to the corner of the cave, his tail between his hind legs. Weaving through other pairs of clothes, he shifted, and quickly pulled the cotton material over his body. By the time he rose from the corners of the cave’s darkness, Elide sat with her legs crossed over the bed, staring intently at the cave’s top. From his angle, she looked like a fallen angel, and Lorcan knew at that instant, he would follow her anywhere—even into Heaven, a place not meant for him.

But he would bring down those golden gates just to leave amongst his mate.

“I—” he started, voice rugged and low, but Elide’s voice abruptly ripped him apart, having him swallow his own sentence. Her eyes cut through him, colder than any temperature and worse than any death.

No amount of time could have him braced for the words that spilled from that cruel, rose-bud mouth of hers. No amount of morphine nor drugs could have numbed him. No amount of preparation or pain would have him ready for her sickened words.

Elide stared at him, and opened her mouth without missing a beat.

“I, Elide Lochan, reject you, Lorcan Salvaterre, as my mate.”

There’s a burning sensation filling every part of him as he falls to the ground, the darkness shattering around him. Air clogs through his throat, and he feels the true abyss of loneliness beckoning him, sucking him in. Pain—this was pain and agony like no other roaring through him.

He thought he knew anguish and anguish knew him.

But this was different.

His wolf is howling and his legs no longer work and he wished that she would have shoved a silver dagger through his heart instead.

The pain peaks, and darkness consumes his vision.

And all is still.

She would not have him.

Elide broke the silence by blowing her nose loudly. For once, Manon deigned to not tap her iron nails against the tables, with Aelin rubbing her arms solemnly and staring at the floor, a despondent look of despair plastered over her face.

The Pack House had still been full of merriment from last night’s activities, and Aelin hadn’t had the heart to shut down the after-party as the Sun broke through the clouds. Instead, the Alpha, Beta, and the apprentice Pack Healer had locked themselves back into Aelin’s room, Elide tending their injuries.

Aelin had not let a single sound escape from her as Elide set her broken elbow. Manon had not scowled.

Elide slid a finger over the mangly flesh that was her ankle, and inhaled sharply. Walking had, for the first time in years, not bothered her. For the first time, she could walk without leaning on her other leg, and run freely and fully.

But for the first time, her heart truly hurt and felt as if an iron brand was wrenching itself onto her.

Because her mate had given her the gift of pain-free. Her mate had healed her, had given her the ability to live a normal life. Her mate had taken away the scars of the chains.

And she had broken him.

Manon stared at Elide, an internal debate playing out in her face. Finally, she said, “The arousal was not the Lycan’s. It was the female’s.” As if it pained her to add, she finally bit out, “Your Lycan had threatened the female’s life. Which is why she was crying.”

She stared at Elide. He did nothing wrong. He rejected every female every since he met you. You were his miracle.


No one had dared to say his name. No one had uttered those two syllables as his body had been lowered onto a hospital bed, whisked away into the Lycan infirmary where regular wolves would never be admitted to.

Aelin looked up with ghastly eyes. “The female is dead. Princess Lycan Essar is dead. The female who was with him that night.”

“That doesn’t excuse the fact she was allowed on top of him.” How could she compare to royalty? Do their dishes for them, and fold their laundry?

“All I hear is jealousy,” Manon snapped. “That boy has degraded himself for you. That boy has turned away his darkness for something good, just for you. That boy risked his health for you, just to make you happy. He tried to war a battle against his nature for you. And this is what you give him? Rejection?”

Manon’s eyes misted to ice, an expression meant for the enemy on the battlefield. Elide found herself paralyzed against the floor as her Beta relentlessly forged on.

“He learned himself to be a monster, but changed for you. He regretted every single action in his life because of you. You were his hope and his redemption. But you even took that away from him.”

His eyes—Lorcan’s eyes had glassed over as his body had collapsed, and his will has left his body.

The Great Silencer had fallen. The Devil’s Mind, Death’s Right Hand, the Executioner. He had fallen.

Aelin tried to hold up a hand, her face tired, but Manon snarled in her direction, and stared down Elide again.

“If you kill and break a monster, Elide, what does that make you?”

Elide stood up, clenching her fists. “Stop.” Her voice cracked. Guilt poured through her, but she couldn’t stop it even if she wanted to. She had hurt her mate, when she was supposed to bring him up, uplift him, help him. She had failed her other half when he so desperately needed her.

She glanced at no one in particular, brushing invisible off her jeans. “Do you think they would let me into the hospital?”

Manon laughed bitterly. “You have no connection to him now. You cannot go in because you are not his mate, and not a Lycan.”

Aelin dragged a blade through the couch, tearing apart the sewing. “But we can distract the guards long enough for Elide to get in.”

Her Alpha looked at Elide with those uniquely ringed eyes, full of burning fire. Hope surged through her, and she smiled at Aelin, the Alpha who would always fight for righteousness.

It was time she did the same. Because she had spent her time here as a healer, only to break her mate. The healer’s creed was to listen, to repair, to understand.

She had done none of those things.

“I’m going to fight for him.” She stood up, testing her ankle, which did not fail her. She had failed Lorcan. Her duty was to appease him, to calm his wolf side. Instead she had severed the mate bond that had tethered him to this world as his one chance of love.

Lycans had to be calmed by physical contact.

The way Lorcan had closed his eyes in delight when she’d touched his cheek the one night—

A lump formed in her throat, and she looked out the window, wishing that the midnight wolf would appear from the crook of the trees. She imagined her fingers stroking Lory’s soft fur, and how she let jealousy and rancor overtake her.

Aelin clasped her hands. “You forgive him for his faults, Elide. But never, ever forget.”

Elide looked at the window one last time, and nodded in Aelin’s direction. She set foot for the door, determination flooding her.

“I’m going to fight for you, Lorcan Salvaterre.”

Breaking in was a lot more simple than Elide thought. Once Aelin showed up in front of the gates, sobbing in front of the guards and demanding the presence of her mate, those doors had quickly swung open.

Elide and Manon had flanked their Alpha, feeding the royals and courtesans with feeble and concerned glances. Apparently Aelin’s anguish worked too well, with the Prince Rowan Whitethorn breaking the castle doors and rushing for his mate with wide eyes and concern etched across his face.

The Lycan didn’t spare them a second glance as he swooped his mate into his arms bridal style. Within mere seconds, they had disappeared within the palace, Manon watching the encounter with distaste.

Elide had hurried after them, not wanting to lose access to the grounds, but apparently Rowan had given them permission to loiter until Aelin had passed his inspections and decided to leave.

Her Alpha had sent a message to them down the pack link, instructing Elide and Manon to search for Lorcan—and that she would not clear herself of the premises until Elide found her mate.

Manon grabbed Elide’s arm, hauling her into the grand palace. Once, she would have admired the towering dome and intricacy of the details tracing every curve of the palace.

Once, she would have been in her mate’s arms.

Manon cast her a sharp look. “Your mate’s probably in the infirmary wing. Just say you’re learning to become a Pack Healer and want to see the medicines here with your own eyes.”


Elide swallowed. How her mate was already changing her without him knowing. But if this was the cost just to plead and have the opportunity to see Lorcan again, then she would lie for the rest of her life, shattering her reputation repeatedly.

“They must have changed the rules around here, if they just let anybody enter,” a high voiced sniffed in disdain.

Elide turned around, her eyes widening at the sight of the female in front of her. The flowing, draping gown that swirled around her feet, displaying diamonds encrusted onto the high heels—

“You do not have permission to make eye contact with me,” Princess Lycan Remelle, first consort to Prince Rowan Whitethorn, snapped. She flicked her wrist at them in dismissal, and wrinkled her nose in Manon’s direction. “Half-breed mutt.”

Manon merely went for Wind Cleaver, staring down the Princess. “What did you say, bitch?”

The Princess softly gasped, placing a delicate hand over her heart. Then the beauteous narrowed her eyes, placing her hands on her hips. “You’d best watch your mouth. Your presence is already unworthy in these halls.” She tossed her hair over her shoulder, pointing her nose down at Elide. “And you—you reek of rejection. It’s only fair you got what you deserved. Poor, poor little weakling—who would want an abused runt?”

A cold smile wrapped around Remelle’s face like a viper readying to strike. And she did, sneering down at Elide.

“Tell me, how was Morath, Elide Lochan?”

Elie didn’t have the chance to utter a word as Manon slashed Wind Cleaver through the air. Remelle barely missed the blade by a centimeter as she scrambled backwards, her gown slashed through the seams.

“Guards!” she screamed, fleeing down the corridors. Her cry echoed down the hall.

Manon growled, and leaped after the Princess of Lycans. After a moment’s thought, she shouted at Elide to find her the gods-damned rutting Salvaterre.

Elide obeyed, running down the opposite direction as a large stream of guards followed Manon’s direction. She sniffed the air, following the scent of Eucalyptus and salves, silently praying to the Moon Goddess that she’d find her mate.

It didn’t matter if she rejected him. She would fight for him back and rip the throats of any female who dared to challenge her spot. She would reclaim what was rightfully hers, just as her mate had tried to claim her.

Lory had wooed her. Lorcan had quashed his wolf’s demands.

Lory had soothed her. Lorcan had denied Essar’s affections.

Lory had given her happiness. Lorcan had taken her to his sanctuary.

Her mate had trusted her with his heart.

Elide had broken the mate bond halfway.

She had shattered her mate’s chance at redemption and love. She had not trusted him when she’d seem him with the other female. She had jumped to conclusions.

Never before had she felt so simply petty. Never before had she felt like a human girl. Never before had she been so determined.

Elide wandered down a series of hallways until she came across a path that no longer lay woven of gold and glass diamonds, but smooth stones. The air turned heavy, the atmosphere thickening.

The scent of Lorcan and blood and grime filled her nose. Elide walked forward, as if she were in a trance. The scent should have brought her comfort, but instead, hesitance filled her veins. She almost wished that her ankle would have failed her now so she’d have the pathetic excuse to crawl back.

But Elide Lochan was going to fight for her mate. Win him back. Give him a second chance and hope he’d do the same as well. So they could learn and grow together—as true mates.

The tang of her mate’s scent was nearly visible in the air with thralling shadows of gallant darkness swooping in the air. Beckoning her.

Elide stopped at the last door, and pressed her palm against the cold stone. She shuddered.

This wasn’t the infirmary. This was a place to waste away.

To decay.

She pushed the door open, wincing at the creaks and wobbling hinges.

A dark figure laid on a bed of stone and bone. The air had accumulated to an almost suffocating layer. Quiet lapped at her, solemn silence filling every crevice.

“Lorcan,” she said.

The figure did not stir, but Elide knew that he was listening. Awake.

She clutched the doorframe as if it would dissipate in her grasp. She ignored the message someone was trying to send her down the pack link. She stared at the sprawling figure, a living longing to touch and comfort him washing over her.

But he would not have her. Not now.

His voice rasped through the darkness. “I hurt everyone. Everyone and anyone who came close to me. Even you.”

Elide blinked away the phantom of tears. “I forgive you.” Always.

“I loved you,” Lorcan said, suddenly and abruptly. Livid passion and raw anger seared in those dark, fathomless eyes.

Elide slowly shook her head, her mate’s eyes tracking each movement. “You loved the idea of me. Not me. There’s a difference.”

“I could have. I could have learned to love. But you didn’t give me the chance.”

Elide stared at the prone figure in front of her. “I’m so sorry,” she whispered.

The granite-hewn face did not relax, and instead black eyes regarded her coolly. “For what?”

Elide swallowed, reaching a hand for him. “For everything.”

Lorcan looked away.

Elide realized what Manon was trying to tell her through the link. Realized the warning too late. She cursed herself, and slowly turned around.

The tsunami of sound thundered in her ears as a sea of armor swarmed towards her. Cold metal lining their bodies tainted the air. Elide felt her knees waver, and she cast her mate a betrayed glance.

Lorcan watched as the guards rounded the corner, and struck a silver blade horizontally across Elide’s back. He did not flinch as her scream resounded across the walls, and as they dragged her down the hallways, her nails scratching against the floor, leaving no marks or dents. He did not blink as she screamed his name, nor as the guards clasped silver handcuffs around her tiny wrists.

Elide’s eyes found his, even through the darkness.

He gave her a smirk, the last piece of hardened piece of him.

“You did not give me a chance, Elide. So I will not give you a second one.”

Lorcan turned away, and waved the door shut as the guards wretched her around the corner. His wolf did not call for her anymore, and he leaned back against the cold bed, closing his eyes.


The cell was cold and damp.

Once upon a time, if someone asked her if she believed in love, she would have wholeheartedly agreed. She would have cooed and fawned over the mere notion. She would have smiled in pure eagerness and elation.

Elide knew better now.

Love was a figment of the imagination.

I loved you.




Her mate had said.


She thought she could have been the sunshine in Lorcan’s darkness. She thought the stars in her eyes would have been the universe for Lorcan. She thought the passion in her heart would have pulsed for him.

Her body sagged against the chains, her mind a sorrowful mess. Her mate didn’t want her. She had pushed him beyond breaking point. He would not give her a second chance. He did not want to fight for her.

Lorcan had taught her that silence was beautiful.

But as she drowned in this silence, in the coldness of the cell, she knew that the only thing that silence meant was anticipation for the future in what the Lycans would do to her.

For breaking the Gamma Lorcan Salvaterre, for placing him in the death bed, for snapping his chance at love. For reducing a Lycan into a sickly stance in which his wolf was isolated without a chance at redemption.

But if he wanted love, he wouldn’t have shut her away in this dark, dark cell. He would not have chained her up, a thicker chain wrapped around her once-mangled ankle, mocking and taunting her.

Down here in this deep cell, bolstered by silver linings, her pack link did not work. She was shut out in sheer loneliness, in forever silence. She was left alone to the poison that seeped through her thoughts, plaguing every syllable and sound.

Elide Lochan turned down the inkling of love. She fully embraced the pain as the mate bond snapped in half, as a piece of her soul was torn away from her. She did not cry as she felt her inner wolf weep and howl in agony.

Elide flinched as the bars to her prison shuddered and slid to the side.

Fear splintered through every bone in her body as she regarded the face of her nightmares grin manically, revealing those pristine, chipped teeth that had regularly sneered at her.

The wolf who had killed her father, and taken away the rightful position of Alpha from her and her bloodline. The faint memory had her ankle throbbing.

“Hello, Elide,” the Alpha of the Morath Pack leered, snapping on gloves oozing magical wards to defend the user from the touch of silver and wolfsbane.

Elide struggled in the chains as she regarded the final piece of her childhood swinging in her Uncle Vernon’s hands, dragged from the outside and into her chilling cell.

No, no no no.

He could not—

The rusted chain, thick and tinged with hints of wolfsbane and silver.

The bars slammed into position, and clicked with a whirring lock.

Elide trembled and jerked in her restraints as he unhooked the coarse chain around her ankle, and gripped her bone firmly in place, no matter how hard she thrashed. A nail dug into her skin, holding her in position.

He leaned in directly in front of her face, the smell of rotten things clouding her face. That monstrous smile that had fueled her nightmares.

“What an adventure you’ve had, Elide,” he breathed onto her face, and snapped the all-too familiar chain over her ankle.

Elide cried out as her ankle bent back into that demented shape, the silver digging into her skin, and the chain marring her skin once again.

Elide Lochan screamed as her Uncle Vernon ripped the fabric of her blouse off her body, a lecherous, triumphant smile on his face.

“Now that your mate has rejected you, you are up for taking.” A bony hand wrapped around her throat. “And I think you will make a fine plaything, Elide Lochan.”