i also would like to be all of them but that is neither here nor there

anonymous asked:

If you have the time and if you don't mind, what are some books you really recommend? Doesn't have to be all time faves, but anything that pops into mind that you want more ppl to read and love, Extra points if lgbt+ , i got the whole summer with little to do and i wanna spend it reading some good quality writing and honestly so far your recs have introduced me to so many faves its unbelievable

[blushes profusely] oh wow, thank you!!!  i’m so glad you’ve trusted me enough to check out some of the stuff i reblog; that is like the ultimate compliment, i can’t even???  i don’t mind at all(!), fair warning though: i only started recording what i read partway through last year and my mind is like a sieve so i’ll do my absolute best to remember what’s sang to me in the recent past.  warning number two: i’m in an open relationship with absolutely every genre out there so i’ll try to note which belongs where so you can avoid those that hold no interest for you.

LGBT+

  • i’ll give you the sun.  i loved this book, the writing is fucking transformative and all the characters are so damn likable, while still being realistically flawed human beings.
  • the raven cycle (tetralogy).  definitely my favorite series since harry potter.  the writing, the world-building, the characters, it’s all on top-form.  i wrote a little, mini non-spoilery review of it: here, back when i was better (worse?) wordly-wise and my feels were brand new.
  • more happy than not.  i’m still not sure how i feel about this book.  it was hard, but it felt very true to the characters and the lingo and style matched the ages of the players and i have a lot of respect for that.
  • the watchmaker of filigree street.  woooow i loved this book.  i admit ‘historical fiction’ kind of makes me cringe.  it never precludes me from reading a book but it does knock it down the list by a book or five because they’re often very dense and very clunky and end up taking me ages to get through.  but this one was gorgeous.  i loved the plot, the attention lovingly placed on every character and the historical elements.  the surprise gay in an already brilliant book felt like winning the lottery honestly.
  • captive prince (trilogy).  okay, truthfully, i’m only putting this on here because the second book is such a high point for me.  it was never bad at any point but it had unfortunately been hyped far too much for it to live up to my, admittedly, very high expectations.  hopefully it’ll fare better with you?
  • everything i never told you.  i go back and forth on this one.  i like the writing a lot, i like the LGBT aspect a lot, and i like the mystery aspect a lot but there are definitely characters i would cut out entirely for sheer predictability if i could and that killed a lot of my enjoyment at the time (but i think much more highly of it in retrospect?).  so, take that as you like.
  • aristotle and dante discover the secrets of the universe.  if there’s a book that handles its characters with more care or respect or consideration then i haven’t run into it.  i love the way this is written and the people it’s populated with.
  • flying lessons & other stories.  a bunch of uber talented authors writing a bunch of uber diverse and LGBT-focused stories and, yes, that is exactly as awesome as it sounds.
  • the song of achilles.  it is utterly heart-breaking but so rich, honestly.

FANTASY

  • the diviners.  (also has a minor LGBT character, who may play a bigger role in the sequel?)  fair warning, i have not read the sequel, lair of dreams, because it is somehow still not out in paperback (yes, i read physical books, yes, i pretty exclusively read paperbacks so i can lug them everywhere with me, YES, I PRE-ORDERED THIS ALMOST TWO YEARS AGO AND IT’S STILL NOT OUT, NOT THAT I’M BITTER ABOUT THAT OR ANYTHING) so i can’t speak to that one finishing on a high note as i don’t know.  but this was the first historical novel i managed to like in a long while.  it does such a good job of fusing in 1920s lingo and dress and aspects that i couldn’t help but love it.  add in the fantasy elements and i can admit i’m the perfect sucker for it.
  • the scorpio races.  i’m not sure why but it took me a long-ass time to get into this book, i wasn’t flipping pages with gusto until well towards the end but - especially as i was reading so much YA at the time - i really appreciated coming across a romance that lets both people come into it as themselves and stay themselves, neither puck nor sean were ever smashed or crumpled or shaved away to fit into their relationship, which was so refreshing.  plus the water horses were fucking cool.
  • the night circus.  the writing, the atmosphere, the circus.  just… it is all very whoa.
  • all the birds in the sky.  i loved this writing style and these characters and the magical elements.

CONTEMPORARY

  • i’ll meet you there.  there was something about this and i just… ended up liking it way more than i expected to.  i might’ve just read it at exactly the right time, i’m not sure, but i really enjoyed it.
  • the invoice.  this is honestly just hella cute and so freaking surreal.  swedes, man.

NON-FICTION

  • why not me?  i like mindy kaling a lot.  i make no apologies for that.  plus you can read both her books in about five seconds, haha.

SCIENCE FICTION

  • station eleven.  i loved this book.  the way the narrative is woven is so refreshing and i wish the comic book miranda was writing in this book was a real thing more than anything else in the woooorld.
  • illuminae.  hot DAMN this book was cool.  the plot was rock solid, the characters were hilarious and badass and the graphics made out of text and spiraling words and just the way this thing is put together?  shit, it’s worth your money and then some.
  • a robot in the garden.  okay this is just cute as hell.  i can’t even with tang, he’s the most adorable robot to ever adorable.
  • annihilation (southern reach trilogy).  (LGBT minor characters.)  okay, honestly?  i don’t know.  this was freaking zany but i was invested as fuck in all the kookiness for reasons i can’t articulately elaborate on.
  • the martian.  hilarious, engaging, SPACE.  what more do you want?

HORROR

  • things we lost in the fire.  this is more atmospheric than anything but, damn, could this get me wishing i wasn’t reading this in the dark or looking over my shoulder to make absolutely sure no one was standing behind me.  it’s a book of short stories (by the way, i love books of short stories and i definitely realize that is not true for everyone) and each one is so well-delivered and stylized.  i really enjoyed reading this.
  • let the right one in.  okay, this is legit horror so definitely stay away if you’re easily squicked out but it is harrrrrd to find good horror (at least in my opinion) and this definitely, definitely qualifies.
  • horrorstör.  i honestly had such low expectations for this, a horror story set in a wannabe-ikea, but it ended up being so ridiculous and strange and funny that i was won over by the finish.
  • the girl with all the gifts.  holy unique and well-executed zombie idea, batman!

SHORT STORIES

  • the bigness of the world.  there were definitely ones here that hit better than others but the ones i liked, i really liked!

GRAPHIC NOVELS (i read a lot of these so, um, prepare yourself)

  • saga.  (LGBT minor characters as well.)  this is world-building to a degree that i’m convinced did not exist before.  just, i can’t say enough amazing things about this series and the staggering amount of imagination that regularly goes into it.
  • ms. marvel.  heart-warming as fuck.  it’s definitely really easy to lose faith in the world these days, luckily kamala is there to remind you that people are primarily and genuinely good.
  • black science.  this is another one that took just an insane amount of imagination to cook up.  i got off to kind of a rocky start with this one but the gray-ness of all the characters really speaks to me, and that doesn’t really blossom until later in the series.
  • spider-man/deadpool.  this was very satisfying for my super duper spideypool-shipping mind.  joe and ed did us so good, and joe basically said in his sign-off: i made it absolutely as gay as they would let me, haha.
  • the wicked + the divine.  (LGBT minor characters that you’re going to get way too attached to, and retroactively.  it’s awful [sobs].)  the concept for this, gods reincarnating into teenagers before they burn up their hosts after a predetermined set of time, is so fucking cool.  the humor and the characters and the plot is all just aces.
  • iceman (LGBT MAIN CHARACTER).  okay, so this just started.  like issue #2 was only released days ago but 1) i am liking it so far and 2) marvel did it so dirty and barely advertised bobby - an openly homosexual superhero - was getting his own series, like, i found out about it the day before it went on sale and i keep my ear fairly close to the ground (not as close as some BY A LOT, but closer than the lay person i’d say) so if you can support it, please do!  pre-orders mean a lot in terms of numbers. :))))
  • descender.  admittedly, this starts out rooough.  because the main character, TIM-21 (and his little dog too), are annoying as hell.  he’s an android so there’s no dimension to him so he’s booooring as all get out but i am so glad i stuck with it through to the next trade because, probably picking up on the unsustainability of him as a main character, he gets shuffled off and the side characters get the stage and they rock so hard.
  • paper girls. (LGBT main characters.)  i’m kind of just convinced that brian k. vaughan can do no wrong at this point.  his plots are so tight and mind-blowing and badass.
  • monstress.  here’s a little tid-bit about me: female comic book writers are 100% more likely to get my money and my time because they are so damn rare and this series is unique, badass, and eye-opening.
  • black monday murders.  i’m a little premature with this since there’s only one volume and i usually try to wait until there are at least two but i check up on a volume two a lot so that definitely means something intrigued me!
  • nailbiter.  okay, i haven’t read the final volume yet ‘cause i’m reluctant to let it go but, so far, a series about multiple serial killers all being from the same town has me VERY HOOKED.

i wish i could remember more but this is honestly way better than i expected to do, haha.  they’re definitely not all my all-time faves but they’re ones that have stuck with me for one reason or another and that i didn’t feel i wasted my time on, so that’s something, right?  i hope this helps get you started and that you don’t think too awfully of me when you inevitably run across ones that aren’t your cup of tea!

lifeandthoughtsandtravel  asked:

I know that you are a reptile tumblr but I was wondering if you knew if it were healthy for dogs to be vegans? I'm just curious because of some vegans that have animals and they make them vegans... is it harmful towards the animal or is it completely safe? thank you :)

It’s an absolutely horrible idea. Dogs cannot be vegans and thrive. They’re not vegetarians and they’re not even really omnivores in the same way we are- while dogs will eat everything we do (and more), feeding them a vegan diet is terrible for their health. A lot of vegans who make this decision will blather on about supplements in the vegan food or about how you can make artificial amino acids or how dogs can survive on it so therefore it’s safe, but dogs can also survive eating Ol’ Roy, the worst dog food in the world. Surviving isn’t the same thing as thriving! A dog’s biological structure means that eating plants and only plants isn’t going to work well in the long run- so let’s look at some of the reasons why dogs need to be fed a diet based in animal protein. 

1. The canine digestive tract is not good at digesting plant matter.

Plant matter is really tough to break down! Meat, on the other hand, digests quickly. Carnivores and herbivores have differently structured digestive tracts that work with their diets. Let’s look at a rabbit’s digestive tract and a dog’s.

See how a rabbit has a functional cecum, while the dog’s is just a little snub of a thing? The cecum is an organ that plays a really important role in non-ruminant herbivore digestion. It’s a large pouch where cellulose and tough fibers in plant-based food get broken down. Dogs, like humans, don’t have one that’s functional for digestion. 

In addition, herbivores like rabbits have very long, complicated digestive tracts. Their food sits in there and breaks down over a long period of time. An average adult rabbit (with a body of about 40 centimeters long, we’re not talking the giant breeds or the dwarf breeds here) has about three meters of small intestine. In American units, that’s a 15 inch animal with almost 10 feet of intestines. A dog, on the other hand, has a small intestine that’s about two and a half times the length of its body- so for instance, a dog that’s two feet long would have about five feet of small intestine. There’s neither enough time nor space in the canine alimentary canal for dogs to fully extract the nutrients they need to survive. 

2. Dog drool doesn’t have amylase.

Amylase an enzyme that converts plant starch and glycogen into simple sugars. Herbivores and omnivores typically have amylase in the saliva, which starts to break down those starches immediately. This means by the time the starches hit the intestine, they’ve already started to convert into something that’s actually useful. Dogs, however, only produce it in the pancreas. There’s no salivary amylase in dogs or any other carnivore. This means that digesting plants and converting their energy into something that’s actually useful is really inefficient for dogs; they can only get something like half of the energy and nutrients they’d get from a comparable amount of meat. It also means that to digest plant material, dogs’ pancreases have to go into overtime to make enough amylase, which can lead to severe pancreatic strain.

3. Dogs can’t digest cellulose.

While the dog pancreas makes amylase, something it doesn’t make is cellulase. Granted, herbivores don’t make it either- in fact, very few animals do. Termites are one of the only animals that make their own cellulase. Herbivore digestive tracts have a reservoir of symbiotic bacteria that produce plenty of cellulase. We’ve actually talked about it- it’s what goes on in the cecum! The bacteria in carnivore ceca, however, is linked to the lymphatic system, not the digestive system. 

There’s also the issue of their teeth not being adapted for a plant-based diet or even the way they eat being good at taking in plants- but the same is true for anything that’s not animal carcasses, including kibble and wet dog food. That’s just evidence that defines them as opportunistic carnivores; what makes a vegan diet so bad for dogs is their digestive biology.

There is one exception to this rule, and that is when a vet prescribes a vegan diet for an animal with significant food allergies or other dietary issues. This is not something vets do unless it’s the best course of treatment for the animal. 

Veganism isn’t the same thing as being an herbivore. Herbivores don’t have a choice; their bodies aren’t built for eating meat. While they might take in animal protein on occasion (deer, for instance, will eat birds sometimes), their teeth, their digestive systems, and their metabolisms all work together to make eating plants the best way for them to survive. A rabbit’s not a vegan- it’s an herbivore. Only humans can be vegans. To be a vegan is to make a choice; it’s to evaluate your place in the world around you and to renegotiate your relationship with all sorts of things- your own body, the food industry, the people around you, and of course the animals you don’t eat. Responsible vegans understand that humans can thrive on an all-vegetable diet; they know that we evolved to be really, really flexible when it comes to the source of our nutrition. While humans are biologically omnivores, we can make that choice.

A dog can’t, and it’s not humanity’s place to force that on them. There are some pets that thrive on an all-vegetable diet. Rabbits, tortoises, finches, hamsters, snails- but not dogs. 

If you’d like more information, this is a fantastic write-up, complete with sources! This is a good, short article written by a vet. This is a blog post that talks about some of the other nutritional deficiencies, particularly involving D3. This is another great writeup with diagrams!

How to Read Energy and What to Expect

As many of you know, one service I offer on this blog are energy readings. I have gotten a lot of inquiries on how I do these readings, so I would like to inform you on my methods as well give you tips on how to do them yourself. Please note that I am not an expert nor do I have the final say on how to do energy readings properly, this is just my experience. 

Understanding Energy
The way I understand energy is as the force that inhabits everything at one point or another. Everything has an energy signature, down to the smallest grain of sand. However, the energy of living things is a bit different. There have been many names given to this energy but it is most often known as one’s life force. The hardest part of an energy reading is picking up on one’s particular energy among the trillions of energy sources swirling around at any given moment, but I will tell you how I do this.


How to Read Someone’s Energy

My method for reading energy is going to be different from everyone else’s. Your method for reading energy will be different from everyone else’s. Everyone has their own techniques for reading energy, but here are a few of mine.

  1. Sit in a comfortable location with at least part of you pressed firmly against the ground. 
  2. If you are reading for someone irl, have them sit near you. Physical contact often helps if both of you are comfortable with that. 
  3. If you are reading for someone not physically present, it can help to have a piece of them “sit” in front of you. I ask for names and blog urls when I do my readings so that I have an energy signature to focus on but you really can use anything or nothing at all, whatever helps you get a lock on the other person’s energy. 
  4. Sit in front of the person or blog and close your eyes. A bit of meditation before you try to tap into their energy is a good idea.
  5. Feel the energy of the earth under you and feel out this individual’s energy as it appears, a piece of the earth just like you.
  6. Grab onto this energy. Snatch it from the earth just briefly. Images, smells, tastes, sounds, colors, and feelings should come to you as you feel their energy. Keep a mental note of what you experience and write it down once you return.
  7. What you have experienced while feeling someone’s energy is their energy reading. It may be a bit of a jumbled mess, but that’s okay. Everyone’s energy is different but there may also be some overlap, which is also okay.

You can give someone their energy reading in many forms. I give mine as a paragraph with everything I saw, yours may be only a line or two. Everyone experiences different things when reading energy and having shorter readings isn’t a bad thing. You may even pick up on more or less energy from each individual. Its totally okay if some readings are long and others very short. 


So…. What if your energy reading doesn’t resonate with me, like, at all?

There could be a great number of reasons your reading went screwy. As I said before, energy can neither be created nor destroyed, it simply changes shape. This being said, it could be a number of factors.

  1. I am picking up not on your energy, but the energy of someone very close to you. If you have been in contact with them recently, pieces of your energy sometimes clings to them. 
  2. It could also be that I am reading into the energy of one of your past lives, something you won’t necessarily resonate with or remember.
  3. It could also be that the reading was accurate but maybe some part of it was hard to hear, or some repressed memory. This is not the fault of the reader, in the long run it is up to the client to interpret the reading. 
  4. It could also be external factors in my own life clouding my ability to pick up on your energy. My cat knocks over a vase in another room and not thinking I write that in as your energy because I was so lost in the moment.
  5. It could also be you’re my last in a long line of energy readings and I am exhausted and hurriedly trying to get through your reading without paying attention to detail. 
  6. It could be any number of things, all acting upon one another. Keep an open mind. 

Whatever the reason for your energy reading not being accurate, it is best to just be polite and move on. No good will come of harassing a reader, especially if they are offering a free service. 


I just did an energy reading and I’m exhausted!

Yup, that’s a real thing and totally normal. Energy readings can be draining, especially for beginners, as you expend some of your energy when you tap into the earth and go out in search of other energies. This is especially draining at first if you have not yet learned how to shield your energy when searching in the energy field and subsequently some of it may be leeched out. Here are some self care tips to help you regenerate faster.

  1. Time yourself. I like to light a stick of incense before I start my readings. Once it is completely burned out, I stop no matter what I’m doing and go drink some water and just do something I enjoy for 30 minutes or so before returning to readings. 
  2. Eat or drink something sugary or high in carbohydrates while you read to return energy lost. I like to munch on sweet cherries while I read.
  3. Learn to shield yourself from energy drain. I imagine my energy dressed in a suit of impenetrable armor before I search out someone’s energy. Your shield can come in any manor of form, find one that feels right to you and keeps the pesky energy leech out. 
  4. Take little breaks in between readings, even just a minute or two to catch your breath. 
  5. Use crystals to return your energy. I like to take some moon-charged amethyst and hold it in my palm during breaks, feeling its energy flow into me. 
  6. Practice self care. Shower, change your clothes, put on some lotion or makeup… Anything like that will help replenish energy.
  7. Take a nap! I have a bad habit of doing energy readings as soon as I wake up and then I’m dead for the rest of the day. Napping helps immensely. 
  8. Know your limits. You probably won’t be able to do 20 energy readings your first day. Pacing is so important.
  9. If you are doing energy readings online, be prepared to use the block button. Some people are going to be rude, but that is their problem not yours.
  10. Have fun! If energy readings become stressful take a break. If someone is waiting on you for their energy reading, they will understand if it comes a little late. If not, fuck ‘em. You don’t owe anything to people who don’t care about your well being as a reader. 

There are a great many things you can do to recharge after an energy reading, but these are just a few of my favorites. Everyone is different, and respecting that is key. 

Remember actually enjoying yourself is key. Good luck with your energy readings!

The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas

From The Wind’s Twelve Quarters: Short Stories by Ursula Le Guin


With a clamor of bells that set the swallows soaring, the Festival of Summer came to the city Omelas, bright-towered by the sea. The rigging of the boats in harbor sparkled with flags. In the streets between houses with red roofs and painted walls, between old moss-grown gardens and under avenues of trees, past great parks and public buildings, processions moved. Some were decorous: old people in long stiff robes of mauve and grey, grave master workmen, quiet, merry women carrying their babies and chatting as they walked. In other streets the music beat faster, a shimmering of gong and tambourine, and the people went dancing, the procession was a dance. Children dodged in and out, their high calls rising like the swallows’ crossing flights, over the music and the singing. All the processions wound towards the north side of the city, where on the great water-meadow called the Green’ Fields boys and girls, naked in the bright air, with mudstained feet and ankles and long, lithe arms, exercised their restive horses before the race. The horses wore no gear at all but a halter without bit. Their manes were braided with streamers of silver, gold, and green. They flared their nostrils and pranced and boasted to one another; they were vastly excited, the horse being the only animal who has adopted our ceremonies as his own. Far off to the north and west the mountains stood up half encircling Omelas on her bay. The air of morning was so clear that the snow still crowning the Eighteen Peaks burned with white-gold fire across the miles of sunlit air, under the dark blue of the sky. There was just enough wind to make the banners that marked the racecourse snap and flutter now and then. In the silence of the broad green meadows one could hear the music winding through the city streets, farther and nearer and ever approaching, a cheerful faint sweetness of the air that from time to time trembled and gathered together and broke out into the great joyous clanging of the bells.

full text below  

Keep reading

Yuri on Ice interview translation - PASH! 2017/03 (p10-11)

The second part of the episode commentary by Mitsurou Kubo! I have now fixed it with all the italic & bold parts as in the magazine (in the magazine they are actually bold & bolder). If you have any questions please send me a private message and I’ll reply when I have some time.

You can find the first commentary about episodes 1-6 here.

Just a note: when she quotes lines from the episodes I’m not using any of the “official” English translations, I’m translating them as I would translate them myself, so they might not be like you are used to hear them, but I think you will understand which lines they are anyway.

The translation is under the cut because it’s long.

***If you wish to share this translation please do it by reblogging or posting a link to it***

***Re-translating into other languages is ok but please mention that this post is the source***

Keep reading

Reasons to adopt Otabek

iNow that everyone has been revived after getting ‘good’ slaughtered by victuuri in ep.10, do you have some time to talk about Otabek Altin? The precious cinnamon roll and Yurio’s new friend?

Let’s get to know this Dark Horse.

Originally posted by sarapyon

So he’s 18, he was the first to qualify for GPF, won last season’s bronze and represents Kazakhstan.  

Many of you might not even be aware of the existence of this country, so in brief: Kazakhstan is a post USSR country in the centre of Eurasia, right between Russia, China, Middle East and Europe continent.

So, why would Kubo-sensei even include someone from there?
The answer is Kazakhstan’s real life figure skating hero - Denis Ten.

Originally posted by fyeahskatinggifs

Originally posted by hanyuedits

Denis Ten is: 

  • the first skater to represent KZ in international championships  
  • currently 23 years old
  • is from Kazakhstan but of a Korean origin
  • Olympic bronze medalist, World silver and bronze medalist, 4 Continents gold medalist, Asia Winter Sports gold medalist
  • cinnamon roll like you wouldn’t believe how sweet

Otabek is definitely inspired by Denis, and therefore I will take his perspective to judge his background.

The thing about sport athletes in Kazakhstan is that they’re ALWAYS self-made. Neither education system nor sports practice is well-developped here yet. Which is understandable since the country is still young (25 years of Independance, yay) and confused in many aspects. That’s not fine but we manage. That however does not change the fact that Kazakh sport education is a complete bullshit when compared to Europe, USA, Asia or Russia (with the exception of boxing and martial arts, probably). 

Therefore if you are from KZ and want a world champion for a kid, these are the steps you need to take:
1. Sign them up for sports club early. No team sports, only individual. Team sports have no future here yet.
2. Once they start to show a talent, interest and/or competitive spirit send them to Russia. Russia has better coaches, facilities and programme. Russia is close, cheap and easy to travel to, and not emotionally stressing for the kid, since it’s the same environment there. 
3. Once they come of an age to participate in a competition SEND THEM AS FAR AS YOUR BUDGET ALLOWS YOU. USA and Canada for figure skating. USA, Europe and Australia for swimming and tennis. Why? Because it’s one thing to train in your rivals’ adobe, all of them young talented and ambitious, being coached by their coach, at the same time as them, and completely other thing to be enrolled in a kind of sports boarding school where the coach is from some France and other students are from all over the world, struggling to get better same as you. Goverment does not provide any stable scholarships for this, btw. It’s all up to parents to find, choose and pay for. If you happen to have a kind, well-educated and persistant coach in KZ, they might win you some bonuses in a harsh battle against bureaucracy, but it will not be enough to cover for all or even half of it. 

LAST YEAR!!!! You hear me?? He was 17, and already a bronze medalist when he returned to his hometown!! 

That means that all the time before he spent overseas. Can you imagine that?? A 13-16 year old Otabek in another hemisphere from his home. That’s like half an equator, one ocean and 11-14 timezones away. 

a l l   b y   h i m s e l f

struggling with language barrier (think he had time to perfect his English before? not likely), with harsh training and obligatory schoolwork - all on top of taking care of himself all by himself.  

Can you imagine Otabek coming back on one of those days to an epmty room in a dorm and messages from his family. Calls might be very hard to time up with such time diference. His mom inquiring how he has been, if he eats properly and does his laundry in time, scheduling for skype calls, updating him on his relatives and friends, giving advice on treating colds and stomach ache, and all those other things that most of the boys his age get for granted. 

My heart aches over thinking how lonely he must’ve felt. 

And, he probably wouldn’t be able to tell them, if anything would not go well. Because there would be nothing they could do from over there, it would only cause them to worry more. Even more than they already would have been.

So there was only one way for him: to suck it up, train hard, suceed and make them proud.

He is not trying to prove himself to himself as Yuuri, nor does he need to prove himself over others like Yurio. He doesn’t want it for fame like JJ, he wants it for his family, his people and his country. That’s any Kazakh’s default mission in life - make your parents proud. Especially after he had returned home with a medal and proved himself to be capable of competing at the same level as Victor fucking Nikiforov and Christophe Jeacometti!!!!!! Him! A Kazakh boy of 17 years!! Kubo-sensei does not joke around when calling him a hero, because he is one! A hero and a history-maker, same as Phichit.

We haven’t seen his coach or team yet, but I have a feeling that it would be the same situation as Denis’s. Meaning, he doesn’t have one. 

Denis Ten often travels (or used to travel) to the competitions by himself. There is no staff assigned to help him out. He is used to do trivial things like filling paper forms, booking time for practice, booking hotels, turning in audio tracks for the performance, etc. There have been numerous times when they had either messed up the music at the start of his performance or even played the wrong hymn during the awards ceremony. In his interview, Denis admitted to being totally lost at what to do at those time. There’s also no one to defend/protect him when something comes up, since there’s no one from KZ who has a weight in figure skating world. 

I have a distinctive feeling Otabek will be the same.  

I mean, how the hell would he be comfortable enough to rent a bike and ride all over Bar-freaking-celona, with no fear to get lost/in trouble, if he wasn’t used to this kind of responsibilities? Again, he’s 18. 

At the same time Yurio is like: 

 

Therefore his friendship with Yurio is truly a blessing. They do have a lot in common, they’re practically from the same background: the lifestyle in KZ and Russia does not really differ. It’s the same culture, the same language (KZ is bilinguial: both Kazakh and Russian are widely spoken), a really similar mindset, educational system, environment, custom etc. They’re both outsiders in the current lineup, striving to make a name for themselves. It’s almost the same as 5 years ago in that camp when both Otabek and Yurio were new to the rink in Saint-Petersburg. That’s what Otabek referring to, I think, when he says Yurio had eyes of a soldier. In that environment they’d be both treated the same, you know. Otabek as a no one from nowhere and Yurio as a that guy from Moscow. Not even sure what’d have been worse.

Also there’s a post going around about bad realtion between Russians and Kazakhs, stressing that Kazakh is an inferior race to Russians - PLEASEPLEASEPLEASE DO NOT BELIEVE IT THAT IS NOT TRUE!!!!!!! 

Our nations have always been close, we have a long and complicated history but the friendship between two countries and people is very strong. 

There are some issues in terms of racism on both sides but it is very rare/obscure case and is usually triggered by something.

Therefore I ask you to support Otabek Altin and his friendship with Yurochka!
Please do adopt him! Please do dote on him! He really deserves and needs that! 

Originally posted by christinophern

and if you have some more feels to spare, please take a look at  Denis Ten too :3  

Thank you for reading, 
with love from Kazakhstan

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

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

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

This is about reassurance.

This is the conversation that was had in the car:

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

DEAN: Wait. So Benjamin’s a woman?

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Here are some of my favourites:

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

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

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

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

hi everyone! i’ve been dealing with depression since may 2017. though everyone here on the studyblr community seems to be well intentioned when it comes to advise on mental health, i noticed that a lot of people feel uncomfortable, knowing that a significant part of them may not have ever experienced any kind of mental illness – note that i used the term ‘uncomfortable’, not ‘angry’. sure drinking water is important, but how is that going to help me, mentally? 

you see, i got no other knowledge about the subject than my own experiences, conversations with doctors and basic research. i can’t guarantee any of this will be helpful to you, but i can share what i’ve been passing through and try to reach a more equal level to those who are also dealing with mental illness and school. here are some things to note:

settling a time for taking medicine

  • this one can sound just as silly as drinking water, though it’s very important to the right functioning of the medicine you’re taking. it’s simple chemistry and you’ll find better results by doing that. your doctor will advise you to do so, then listen to all of their reccomendations
  • ok, so you’re taking medicine and has settled a time for doing it, great! now, you should turn it into a task. write it down on your journal, programme a phone alarm, or even find an app for this, so you won’t skip the correct time for doing it
  • however, you’re probably going to skip time for one day or another, and it’s absolutely ok, since it doesn’t become something frequent!

sleeping

  • well, sleeping is a quite complicated one: apparenty, depression can make you wether sleep too much or not sleep at all, and that’s s my case. i would wake up every night and spend 40-50 min awake. it took me 5 different pills until i found the one that made my sleep enough and regenerating again
  • report your sleeping problems to your doctor. sleeping medicine can lead your mind to some weird dreams, as it’s done to me, and your doctor will know how to handle this

doing stuff you like

  • depression is well known for making people uncapable of doing all the things they once were passionate about. i know. however, you have to keep in mind that you’re now starting a new phase, the getting better phase, now that you’ve been taking medicine and seeing the doctor. in time, maybe the day you start taking medicine or maybe not so early, you’ll return to do what gives you pleasure
  • make sure that your hobby doesn’t feel like an obligation and happens spontaneously 
  • maybe you don’t have a hobby, a hobby that feels like the stereotypical ones, like drawing, singing or playing tennis, and that’s alright: find something you do without any blame and stick to it 

studying for exams

  • this can be a great oportunity for you to try new studying methods. depression injuries your academic productivity, and by the end of the semester the only you wish is your school year to be over; then all you want is your notes to be efective
  • there are tons of study tips for your here on tumblr. don’t be afraid of trying a new note taking system or doing those vocabulary things that are so popular here
  • i know it doesn’t feel like the correct time for experimenting; you have to make it to the next year and shouldn’t get too excited planning what you’re gonna do, and then end up in a mess bigger than before. i have this thoughts frequently. but, during my last exams seasion, i was just so tired!!! i didn’t read every book, didn’t take revision notes that covered up everything in detail, but what i did felt effective
  • trust me, neither you nor these people on studyblr community can study everything to their 100%, even if they are mentally healthy. that’s impossible, so don’t push yourself too hard

receiving exams results

  • well, you can probably guess that this is about receiving bad results. good grades need no preparation for, in contrast to bad ones… erm, but we have to cover them up: your effort may not work. you may fail some subjects. it is a possibility, and it doesn’t mean that you should’ve done more or that it’s just a big picture that represents how you were never able to develop studying skills – sorry! i have these thoughts
  • you can always work on prevention. prevention from failing and prevention from feeling completely helpless if you do

letting your school know

  • you should consider letting your school teachers and headmaster know about your condition. this way, they’ll get to understand your lack of motivation and the occurrent classes that you’ve been skipping or simply away from
  • you can also get the chance to take tests at home or separately from the others, if that’s how you wish to

getting a legal absence

  • you can get a legal absence from school, if you understand that you’ll feel better at home. i decided it was the best for me to do and had my parents, doctors and school supporting my decision. if this is something that often cross your mind, make sure you have thought it through, then you’ll have to deal with all the bureaucracy, but hopefully it won’t take too long

final considerations

keeping a journal

  • the day i started taking medicine, i decided i would start a journal to monitor my feelings and simply write down moments or things i’d like to remember later on. both my psychologist and psychiatrist supported my idea. maybe you could enjoy doing so, or going for the things i did well today challenge

treating yourself

  • it can be a hobby. we all know how life is busy. if you just can find an hour when you can enjoy your body lotions, do some skin care or simply wash your hair, then lucky you are
  • though depression can depravate your want to do some of the self caring, you could find a way to reanimate these habits, when you do it only in order to take care of your well-being

starting a studyblr, studygram or a studytube

hobbies during bad days

  • i’m so glad i’ve got my hobbies to use them in my favour! they can feel pretty productive when i can’t function to the productivity patterns. my psychiatrist recommended me not to pin them to my weekly activities, so i wouldn’t have to worry about them. maybe this strategy suits you as well

i believe this is pretty much everything for now. ahhhh please let me know if any of this sounds helpful and thank you very much for reading!!! 

wishing you the very best on earth!!!

clueless

Summary: Scary movies lead to protective cuddles leads to… you and Bucky?

Pairing: Bucky Barnes x Reader

Word Count: 1,459

A/N: Here is my super late submission for my beloved Foster’s[ @lady-thor-foster ] Halloween challenge! Hope you all enjoy! | masterlist

Originally posted by xopsychogirlxo


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Yuri on Ice 2017/02/11 all night event report

I’m back from the event and I’ll write a report before going to sleep, mostly because I’m sure I will not be able to decipher my scribbles when I wake up… It’s not the full talk show since you can’t record it and also I couldn’t possibly write down everything, but I tried to take note of most things, especially stuff that has never been mentioned elsewhere. In the end it became quite long so I guess I was able to get most of the stuff down…

Needless to say it’s my notes, so other people might write about parts I omitted, etc. To be honest quite a few of the things they said especially in the beginning, like what the seiyuu think about their characters, is something I’ve read so many times in interviews that I could almost answer in their place, lol… I was a bit disappointed that one of the questions that was answered is the one about Chris’ mysterious acquaintance, because actually Kubo answered that in Pash already (it’s in the Q&A part I’ll be translating later), and I hoped they would feature questions about stuff that hasn’t been explained yet. Well I guess not everybody reads interviews, but still…

Due to the format of the report you can find my comments here and there, mostly in brackets.
Under the cut because it’s long.

I forgot to mention something important: the ones participating in the talk show were Mitsurou Kubo, Toshiyuki Toyonaga (Yuuri), Junichi Suwabe (Victor), Kouki Uchiyama (Yurio).

Keep reading

anonymous asked:

if i wanna get into dc as a Gay where should i start pls

Sorry for the late reply!!! Ok here is a list of good LGBT heroes, a short desc, and links to recommended reading!

EDIT: I realized I sourced to someone who ships incest and I want this to be a safe blog without anything like that. Unfortunately for some of the sources I couldn’t find any others or any better. I’ve marked all links to their blog w a *. Stay safe.


Selina Kyle/Catwoman. Bisexual. Selina is a highly skilled thief who is both a hero and a villain, depending on the arc. Selina’s morality is definitely neutral on the scale. She’s not opposed to stealing and hurting bad guys but she has objections to unnecessary cruelty. She’s best known for being one of Batman’s allies & love interests. Her official “coming out” was when she kissed Eiko Hasigawa, the daughter of a Yakuza boss, who teamed up with Selina to bring him down. ( x | x )

Harley Quinn. Bisexual. Harley Quinn’s backstory unfortunately features a lot of the Joker but she’s on to better things now. Psychiatrist turned supervillain, she was brainwashed by the Joker and in a long running relationship with him, where he manipulated and abused her. She has a similar (but obviously, better in every way) clown/jester aesthetic. Currently, she’s in an open relationship with Poison Ivy. Tw for emotional & physical abuse & manipulation for any stories that include her relationship with the Joker. ( x | x | x )

Pamela Isley/Poison Ivy. Unspecified wlw. Pamela was a botanist who was poisoned but they fucked it up big time because she not only survived but can now she’s immune to all poisons, can control plants, and her lips produce poison that she can use to control people. She has had relationships with men but they have consistently been for her own benefit and as a result her sexuality is frequently debated over. ( x | x | x | she also recently got a solo one off you should check out )

*Little note abt the above 3: if you’re not already familiar, they frequently team up and in some arcs they even live together. The three of them are known as the Gotham City Sirens and I’m going to link you some sources for them separately bc if you want gay comics what’s better than the Big Gay Apartment of Crime? ( x )

Joseph Wilson/Jericho. Bisexual. The son of Deathstroke with the ability to possess people. As a child he was kidnapped by a terrorist who was after Deathstroke and after Joseph refused to give them information about his father, the terrorist slit his throat, rendering Joseph mute. Joseph apparently was originally going to be gay but they didn’t want it to be “stereotypical” since he’s sensitive & artistic. There’s also some lame stuff where a man Joseph was dating goes to call him bi and he cuts them off to say he doesn’t like labels…but he still seems pretty cool. ( x * ) 

John Constantine. Bisexual. John is an occult detective and sorcerer. I’d say he’s more hero than villain but his morality is…gray to say the least. He’s a complete asshole but it can be a very fun read and if you’re interested in something that is more based in demons, witches, & spirits than supervillains then John’s your man. Tw for drugs in a lot of his stories. ( x | x )

Harper Row/Bluebird. Bisexual. New ally to the Batfamily. She’s bisexual and her brother, Cullen, is gay and her brother’s identity is actually part of her start as a vigilante hero. Her brother was being assaulted & attacked by homophobes and Harper tried to defend him. She kept a taser with her and when they were cornered by the group of bullies, she tried to fend them off. When they were overpowered, Batman appeared and saved Harper & Cullen. Both vowed to show their thanks to Bruce – Cullen by getting a tattoo of the bat symbol and Harper by becoming a superhero herself. She has an expertise in electrical engineering. ( x * | x )

Grace Choi. Bisexual. Grace Choi is half human, half Amazon. She’s headstrong and tough and was a member of The Outsiders for a while before it disbanded. In The Outsiders she met Anissa Pierce (listed below) and the two became romantically involved. Unfortunately I’ve seen some people on here call her “heterosexual homoromantic” or some shit but as somebody with some sense…I’ll just tell you she’s bi lmao… ( x * | x )

Anissa Pierce/Thunder. Lesbian. A metahuman with the ability to shoot lightning and control her own density. She promised her superhero dad, Black Lightning, she would go to college before fighting crime so on the night she graduated college she became Thunder. Was also a member of The Outsiders and Grace Choi’s girlfriend. ( x * )

Alysia Yeoh. Bisexual & Transgender. Alysia is the only person on this list who is neither a hero nor a villain. I wish she were a hero but I wanted to include her because finding trans characters who are not made into jokes is incredibly hard and Alysia is not a joke character. She was Barbara Gordon’s roommate and is a bartender/artist/activist. She dated Babs’ brother for a while but is currently married to another woman named Jo. I know she’s in Bombshells but tbh I don’t know the extent of her involvement. ( x * ) 

Dawnstar. Bisexual. An alien from the futurewith enormous wings that’s skilled in combat. She’s a member of the Legion of Heroes and a bounty hunter. Her best known relationship is with fellow legionnaire Drake Burroughs (Wilfire) who is apparently just sentient energy trapped inside a suit? Tbh I don’t know much about her but she sounds dope…An unnamed female character confirmed that they had a relationship together during a mission in which heroes sought out her help in resurrecting another hero. ( x * )

Kate Kane/Batwoman. Lesbian. Batman’s Jewish lesbian cousin. Honestly if you like Batman you’ll like Kate. They operate similarly and use a lot of the same gadgetry. Kate’s best known relationship was with Renee Montoya (mentioned down below) though I believe she’s currently with Maggie Sawyer. (  x * | x | x )

Renee Montoya/The Question. Lesbian. A detective turned vigilante hero that wears a kind of spooky faceless mask. Was Kate Kane’s girlfriend for a while. Some of her stories include her struggle with alcoholism so watch out if that’s a trigger for you. ( x * | x ) 

Midnighter. Gay. Gay goth asshole tbh. Midnighter is a superhero with enhanced fighting abilities. Often referred to as basically being like Mean Gay Batman but if you ask me Midnighter is a very cool stand-alone hero. Also he’s 6′5″? That’s not super important but I think about it a lot. Married to Apollo even tho Apollo could not be more of a prep. In some arcs they’ve even adopted a daughter together. ( x * | x * | x )

Apollo. Gay. Sweet prep god? Apollo was kidnapped and subjected to experimentation as a child that resulted in him having superpowers similar to Midnighter’s but more advanced and powerful. Just like Midnighter is considered to be similar to Batman, Apollo is considered to be similar to Superman, but again, they are very, very cool without being compared to anybody else. ( x * | x * )

Jackson Hyde/Aqualad. Gay. Gay black teenager with hydrokinetic powers, best known for his role in the Teen Titans. Aqualad was just made gay recently, in Rebirth, so the reading for him is pretty simple. Just a heads up, his mother doesn’t accept him being gay or his abilities, so any issues with his mom will have homophobia present. (Check out Teen Titans Rebirth!)

Holly Ann Fields/Virtue. Lesbian. Holly has several psychic abilities as well as flight and is the leader of the vigilante group located in Coral City, The Movement. (as far as I know the reading would just be The Movement by Gail Simone, which has unfortunately been cancelled so it’s only 12 issues.)

Miguel Barragan/Bunker. Gay. Miguel is a metahuman from Mexico and was written with the intention of being “angst-free” so his family & village were very accepting of his superpowers and his sexuality. He has the power of creating things out of this weird purple energy. ( x * ) 

Holly Robinson. Lesbian. Selina Kyle’s best friend & understudy. Holly experienced a lot of abuse as a child and was forced into prostitution. Selina caught a cop assaulting Holly and stepped in and taught Holly how to defend herself. They teamed up and got out of the scene and Selina taught Holly how to fight, as well as her tips for stealth and theft. Holly occasionally stands in as Catwoman. Big tw for child abuse, sexual abuse/assault. ( x * )

Ray Terrill/The Ray. As a child Ray was told he couldn’t be exposed to the sun so he spent most of his life in the dark. However, as his father was dying he told him that he wasn’t his biological father and he lied about his son being allergic to sunlight. His real father was a superhero called Golden Age Ray and Ray in fact gained powers from the sun. His powers allow him to fly, become invisible, create illusions & constructs, turn his entire body into light energy, etc. Ray was confirmed gay before Rebirth, but in Rebirth he is confirmed in canon. ( x * | x )

Diana Prince/Wonder Woman. Bisexual. Diana is an Amazon and as such has…so many powers…She’s very strong. She’s also very good & intelligent and tbh is all around a great hero. You probably know who she is tbh. She was recently confirmed to be bisexual but unfortunately it was out of canon and therefore she doesn’t have any plots that relate to it and it’s not confirmed in canon. ( x )

Also here’s another link to check out: http://lornahs.tumblr.com/post/161517287094/as-a-way-to-celebrate-pride-month-here-is-a-list *

This is by no means a comprehensive list! If anybody wants to add more or correct anything I’ve said here that’d be really great! But here are some great heroes. If you have any questions, any specific requests, or need help finding any download links, my askbox is always open and I’m always happy to help.

“Does it hurt anymore?” A tribute to Cody Christian’s character Theo Raeken.

Plenty of people were convinced that Theo Raeken would not make an appearance in the final episode of Teen Wolf. Plenty of them thought that Theo Raeken was going to die in episode 19. However, he was neither in episode 19 nor died whilst taking a bullet for Malia with Stiles shouting her name, as so many spoilers indicated. This merely proves that we should not be too keen on believing what we read on the Internet.

We see Theo in his truck, talking to Scott on his phone. The Alpha asked the chimera for help. That’s why he is on his way to the hospital. Old Theo would not have done so. Old Theo would have long been gone, selfishly only saving his own ass. However, Old Theo literally is gone. We will learn what that means later on, once Theo has arrived at Beacon Hills Hospital.

Liam is there, confronted by several hunters with guns aimed at him. His situation seems hopeless, but the elevator doors fling open and Theo pulls the beta inside. The doors close before the hunters’ bullets can do any harm. This certainly brings the Thiam scene in 6x09 to mind where Theo pushed Liam into the elevator and became the bait himself, ready to risk his life lest the beta was taken.

This time, however, they are both in the elevator, staring at each other.

What are you doing here?”  Liam asks.
“I was just asking myself the same thing,”

 Theo simply replies. The chimera wants to help. He is ready to fight the hunters, to keep Scott’s pack safe. He is ready to keep Scott’s beta safe. We can literally feel the tension between Theo and Liam in these few seconds inside the confinement of the elevator.

A heads up for Thiam-fans: Jeff Davis actually was wondering himself why they did not kiss in the end. Khylin Rhambo mentioned that during the screening, everyone thought that “they were gonna do it”. Cody and Dylan obviously enjoyed working together and their chemistry is amazing, no matter if you would like to see Theo and Liam as an actual couple or friends. They were definitely bonding. Cody and Dylan loved the fans’ response to their bromance. Dylan is like a little brother to Cody and the only thing we could possibly regret is that Theo and Liam did not have the chance to develop their friendship a tiny bit sooner.

I’m not dying for you.

–– I’m not dying for you either. But I will… fight with you.

Okay. That’s fine.

 Although they do not say so, we just know that they care about each other. They would probably not even admit that they do. They are a team and respect one another. The doors open and we finally see these two in action again. Their eyes glow, razor sharp fangs and claws emerge. THIAM are ready to fight. And they fight in unison.

Their fighting scene is yet another highlight of the finale. As I said in one of my previous articles, Theo and Liam are strong alone, but lethal when they join forces.

These two, who were so reluctant to even be in the same room together at the beginning (just think about their scenes in front of the hospital and Liam wanting to use Theo as bait), slowly began to trust each other. Everyone needs someone they can count on, someone who does not question anything they do.

However, both are injured in the fight. One of the teenage hunters, Gabe, takes several bullets by mistake. He is in excruciating pain, moribund. The teenager is bleeding to death. 

And here comes Theo’s triumphant scene. Theo approaches Gabe, who’s lying in a puddle of his own blood. “It hurts,” he says. His voice is brittle.

Theo takes Gabe’s arm. “You can’t take the pain if you don’t care,” Mason told him in episode 18. This time, however, Theo shows kindness. Dark veins emerge on Gabe’s arm, drawn to Theo’s hand. He takes Gabe’s pain away. He knows what it is like to care. 

Does it hurt anymore?
-       No.
Good.
 

The chimera’s redemption arc is completed. He proved how altruistic he has become. Theo does not only care about himself anymore. Theo has a heart. Cody Christian shows that he does.

Now I am not surprised that this was Cody’s favourite scene. It was emotional, sad but also an act of kindness. Theo hardly knew Gabe at all. Gabe was one of the hunters. Yet, he proved that he cares.

Now we have allies that used to be enemies. We have protectors, we have friends willing to fight for us.

Theo has proven himself. He is an ally the pack can count on. It is a bit sad that quite a few questions remain unanswered. I would have loved to find out more about Theo’s childhood. How he ended up with the dread doctors. How he became the first chimera, why he stopped caring. I would have loved to see Liam offer him a place to stay since he can’t stay in his truck forever. Or Theo helping Liam handle his anger issues. 

Nevertheless, Theo Raeken is fine. He is out there, safe and sound. Driving around in his truck. Maybe he even joins Liam, Mason and Corey to play some video games from time to time. He’s still a teenager after all. Sometimes you just need to have some fun, right?

Thank you, Cody, for bringing Theo Raeken to life. It was you who assured with your outstanding performance that this character was not killed off, as originally intended. I cannot wait to see what’s next for Cody. He is destined for greatness and people just need to realize it. He, as so many others out there, inspires people every day. He creates something we can indulge in. Something we will never forget. It is not only the story that made us adore Teen Wolf, but the actors behind it all. People who make you feel better when you have a bad day. Thank you for all these amazing years.

q&a: Kieran

princekierz said:

Hi Cassie. This is about Lady Midnight, not Lord of Shadows, so I may be a little late but anyway. People who hate Kieran are constantly bringing up the fact that he tried to convince Mark that he being with his family again wasn’t real in that note he sent him and I really can’t understand why he did it? What was the true purpose of that note? Can you please tell me? I love Kieran, and I don’t like when people are unfair with him. Thank you.

That’s interesting – I have to admit it never really occurred to me people would be confused by what that note meant/was about. The below contains spoilers but not major ones, so skip if you are avoiding even mild spoilers.

First I should say it’s fine to dislike a character. There is no character I have written or read about that someone hasn’t disliked for some reason. If that character is in a love triangle, multiply that by 100,000,0000000. (That may not be a real number but you get the point.) I’ve been thinking a lot about liking and disliking characters and the act of reading with empathy, which I will get to more at the end of this essay. Right now I’m just going to talk about what that note meant, and the way in which Kieran is a complicated sort of character generally.

We read for lots of reasons. To see our own experience reflected (a “mirror” reading experience) and also to see experiences that are not ours. (A “window” experience.) One of the interesting things about seeing the judgements of Kieran is the expectation that he is meant to act like a mundane human being (one who has dutifully read not just many relationship-help tomes but also all the Shadowhunter books – thanks, Kieran! – and is well acquainted with the Blackthorns despite never having met them). At very least, he is expected to act like a Shadowhunter, and not at all like a Faerie – despite the fact that a Faerie is what he is, and as a Faerie, he is not like us. He does not have typical human cultural beliefs about love (in good and bad ways), or commitment — he doesn’t mind at all whether Mark has sex with other people — or what promises mean, or what is personal space (a ridiculous idea to a Faerie.)

Mostly what I’ve seen complaint-wise about Kieran is that he is manipulative, which is true only to the extent that he has grown up in Faerie, where everyone is manipulative. Because they cannot lie, they have created a complex society of misdirection and manipulation and Kieran, growing up as Prince, would have been raised in the heart of that. He would know no other way to behave, and indeed has only been learning, slowly, different human patterns of behavior. He is actually really terrible at being manipulative — not a patch on Julian, for instance — and mostly he is neither good at it nor does it that often. But we can certainly look at what he has done.

So, on to the note and the vague six words it contains. (I don’t really understand what “he tried to convince Mark that he being with his family again wasn’t real” means, because Mark was obviously with his family and not, say, on a balloon tour of Cappadocia. I don’t think even the Seelie Queen would have tried to convince him otherwise, because that is not manipulation, that is waving your arms around yelling “Mark! They’re dosing you with PCP! That’s not really Ty! It’s a huge bunny!“ which is not going to work and nobody would reasonably think it would.) So I’m just going to gather that some sinister goal is being implied here and talk about why Kieran did send the note.

Remember that none of this is real. Why did Kieran say that? Because he was worried about Mark and thought it was the truth. Not for another reason. I gather there is an assumption that the phrase "remember that none of this is real” is somehow about Mark’s family, but it wasn’t. If Kieran had wanted to say “don’t trust your family” or whatever, he would have said that. The note was about the entire world of the Nephilim. Nor was it anything Kieran didn’t entirely think was true.

Nor was he entirely wrong.

Kieran was cast out of the King’s court because he was well-liked and the King saw him as a threat. He spent his years in the Wild Hunt with Mark watching as Mark’s heart broke every single night when he counted out his family’s names on the stars. He felt Mark’s agony when Mark saw Simon, and thought Simon had come to bring him back to the Nephilim, only to find out the Shadowhunters had abandoned him like garbage. Experiencing the agony of someone you love is worse than experiencing your own. After living through the horror of Mark’s despair and crushing loss, is it particularly surprising that Kieran might be wary of Mark getting attached to his family again only to be ripped away from them again – which is in fact what pretty much everyone in Lady Midnight thought was going to happen? Like, nobody thought this majorly fuckerated offer from the Fair Folk was likely to have a good outcome? Julian was terrified what it meant for the kids and thought it might be better if Mark had never come back? Kieran is unlikely to have a more positive view of the kindliness and honestly of the Clave (or the Courts of Fae) than Julian does.

Here is what Kieran knows to be fact:

Shadowhunters hate Faeries.

Mark was abandoned by his people. The Nephilim, certainly, his family, perhaps. Kieran knows they never tried to get in touch with Mark, and he is unaware of the Blackthorns’ complicated circumstances, that they were forbidden to look for Mark, and that they needed to protect Helen. There is no way he would know about those things, unless he had read the books. (Read the books, Kieran!).

He knows the Shadowhunters have enacted the Cold Peace, a series of racist laws punishing Faeries. He knows Mark will be in danger from this.

He has no reason not to think that when Mark is returned to the world of the Nephilim, using his family as bait, they won’t chop his damn head off.

That is what Kieran is urging Mark not to think is real. Nephilim promises. The idea that he will be safe outside Faerie in the Shadowhunter world. And Kieran is not exactly wrong either. We are all glad that Mark is back with his family….and if the Cohort gets into power they might chop his damn head off. Maybe he would have been better off back in the Wild Hunt.

Kieran can’t lie – and he can’t lie in writing either. He said what he said in his note because he was frightened for Mark, and he wanted him to stay safe. In no way did he mean “Your family doesn’t love you,” because if he thought that, he would actually have said it at some point, ever, rather than being incredibly vague in a note that, since he has never said anything remotely like “Your family doesn’t love you” to Mark, Mark would find incomprehensible. Mark understands the note perfectly, because the idea that Nephilim as a group are not trustworthy is not new to him nor is it a huge surprise Kieran would feel that way. (There’s also a lot of numinous stuff to get into about what real and unreal means to faeries, in a magical sense, but there’s no room here, alas.) Kieran has lots of opportunities to say bad things to Mark about his family if he wanted to, but IIRC he never does.

Misguided is not the same as manipulative. To be manipulative means that you’re playing on someone else’s hopes or fears to achieve selfish ends without regard for their well-being. But the idea that Kieran is a cold-hearted bastard who didn’t mean a word of the note (despite not being actually able to lie) and is a consummate actor doesn’t really jibe with anything we actually know or observe about Kieran. Far from having Julian’s ability to play others like guitar strings, mostly Kieran blurts out what he means when he means it and never even tries to pretend otherwise. He can be petulant as hell and annoying, showing up to see Mark when he’s not supposed to and sulking about whether Mark likes someone else. He can be manipulative in the way he sometimes kisses Mark when Mark is trying to be logical because he’s insecure and he trusts Mark’s desire for him even when he can’t convince himself Mark really loves him (but this doesn’t really work, which is what I mean by Kieran not being great at manipulation). He very foolishly interferes with Mark’s dream in Lord of Shadows because he wants to talk and he thinks giving Mark a dream in which they’re having a friendly conversation means he’ll find out what Mark’s hiding. (Which is another example of him not really understanding human issues. All he wants out of the dream is a talk — “Because you are not truthful with me. Your heart is closed and shrouded. I cannot see it,” Kieran said. “I thought, in dreams, perhaps …” — and the dream starts out with them sitting and talking while one bandages the other, and Kieran manages to get in the idea that he knows Mark is lying to him. Things take a sexy turn, but not because of Kieran. He can’t control Mark’s dreams in every detail: if he could, there would be literally zero point in a dream in which he’s hoping Mark will volunteer to tell him the truth. Mark has to have free will in the dream or there’s no point in what Kieran straight-up says the dream is for, and again, Kieran cannot baldfacedly lie. And Kieran is right — Mark is lying to him, in fact the whole family is gaslighting him, which is why it pains Mark when Kieran recalls the phrase “remember that none of this is real.” Because none of it, in this case, IS REAL. Kieran is being lied to by EVERYONE. However, Mark is still right that Kieran shouldn’t be poking at his dreams — and he shouldn’t. Kieran, as a faerie, doesn’t really get that: dreams aren’t private to him, and besides, Mark has allowed Kieran into his dreams before, so Kieran assumes it’ll be okay now, because Mark said it was all right previously. But this is where Kieran needs to learn not to make assumptions, and to value Mark’s privacy even if he doesn’t really get it. Does he? He seems to: he listens to what Mark says, and he never touches his dreams again. In fact, they actually have a pretty useful, healthy conversation about it, though we have to wait until QoAD to see how any breakthroughs they make in LoS play out.)

So yes, Kieran can make spectacularly bad decisions, with the worst of them being when he thought getting Mark hauled back to the Wild Hunt for an infraction was a good idea and wouldn’t result in any collateral damage. And Kieran deserves to be blamed and to feel guilty for that, nor do I mean to excuse him – and I have no interest in doing that; that wrong that he did is a building block of his flawed character. As I saw someone say on twitter the other day, which probably means you’ve all seen it many times, characters are not all either angelic cinnamon rolls or problematic monsters. Like people, because they are intended to reflect people, they exist on a continuum of behavior: some fail and learn, some fail and never learn, some have good intentions and some bad, some grow and change, some are changed by grief or shock or maturity, some cannot grow and are tragic figures. Committing a manipulative act doesn’t damn you forever unless you keep committing manipulative acts forever. If people (and characters) were rendered garbage by past mistakes, there would be no need for therapy or books, since both are about how people learn to change.

As Kieran says: “Everyone is more than one thing. We are more than the single actions we undertake, whether they be good or evil.” That was in Lady Midnight, and it’s possible he was thinking about the fact that he never tells Mark in that book that the reason he wanted Mark brought back to the Wild Hunt so badly – the reason he turned Mark in, hoping he’d be dragged away from the world of Nephilim – was not so that he could date Mark, but because he had been told Mark was going to be murdered. That Mark’s head was going to be chopped off NOW. That doesn’t excuse his behavior, but it makes it a lot less manipulative in two ways: he actually wasn’t acting for a selfish end, but to protect Mark from death, and he never tells Mark that in LM, letting Mark blame him. He lets Mark break up with him and walk away from him with only quiet resignation as a reply. He does nothing to try to make him stay and attempts no manipulation at all, nor is he manipulative when he shows up to help save Tavvy – he offers help, gives it, and expects nothing in return. Only when Kieran is in shock over having been lied to, and his sudden recollection of his own mistakes, does he tell Mark that he was in fear for Mark’s life – which makes a big difference to Mark, who is able to recognize what that means about why Kieran did what he did.

[Kieran said] “Iarlath had hinted you would not be safe in the Shadowhunters’ world. That they were planning to lure you back, only to execute you on some trumped-up charge. I was a fool to believe him. I know it now.”

“Oh,” said Mark. The knowledge unfolded in him, realization edged with relief. “You thought you were saving my life.”

Kieran nodded. “It makes no difference, though. What I did was wrong.”

(Emphasis mine.) Kieran is flawed, he screws up. He is also capable of acts of great nobility – his willingness to testify to protect the Blackthorns at the end of LOS being one of them. Kieran spends LOS being lied to and manipulated by everyone around him while his memory is gone. He is trapped in the Institute, a place so full of anti-Faerie magic that it makes him so sick he can barely eat. He suspects Mark is jerking him around in some way, he turns out to be right, and he’s still willing to testify in the Blackthorns’ defense. He is also able to see when he is/was wrong, and acknowledge it. None of this makes him a perfect person, but it certainly complicates him away from the oversimplified reading that he’s a manipulative horrorshow and that’s the end of the story — especially when a huge chunk of the story has yet to be told.

My suspicion, since there are plenty of other flawed characters in these books stumbling along messing up, is that Kieran’s true crime is being part of a love triangle. Having been through this before I remember well the long essays about how Will was a horrible person and the Wessa relationship was toxic and Jem was a horrible person and that relationship was toxic because dying people should know not to bother other people with their feelings (seriously). That is how people talk about love triangles these days; it seems to be a contest about which relationship is perceived as healthiest, which people are the best and most deserving people of the prize (Tessa, or in this case, Mark). There are a couple problems with that: one that is an unhealthy relationship can become healthy. (It obviously depends on the relationship, some absolutely cannot and should not be fixed, but there would be little need for marriage counselors if relationships could not be made healthier.) The second is that if you want to hate a character, you can convince yourself they are evil even if they spend a whole book saving bunnies, nuns, and salmon who can’t find the salmon cannon, so the arguments do get a bit circular after a while. Certainly I have come across plenty of essays about how Cristina is terrible and should go away because Kieran doesn’t like her (he does like her) and Mark doesn’t want her (not true) and she isn’t so great (I think she is so great and so do they.)

So I will say three things:

1) Kieran is not what is keeping Mark and Cristina apart, any more than Cristina is what is keeping Mark and Kieran apart. Kieran and Mark have a relationship that needs to be worked on to be healthy, and Cristina and Mark have to get to know each other better outside the magic of the binding spell. These things would be true regardless.

2) I know that this essay will garner plenty of people announcing that this means I ship Mark and Kieran or am in love with Kieran, and I know this because this happens whenever I post anything about them, or a piece of fanart of them, even if I post a piece of fanart of Cristina and Mark shortly after. I can only say what I have said for ten years, which is that I don’t ship my own characters or “love” them in the way a fan loves a character — all the characters are pieces of myself in some way or other so that’d feel very odd. I know there may be other authors who feel differently, but I can’t “ship” a couple when I’m primarily interested in their relationships in terms of theme, craft and writing the best story I can — I need the distance of being a reader, not a writer, to “ship” something. (I would also note that male authors rarely ever have people talk about how they’re in love with their characters or they write about them because it’s a “fetish” or “they get off on it”: only women get that narrative, but that’s another post.)

3) I remember reading online that writers should write with “savage empathy.” I’ve always thought that was great advice, as it reminds us to always stay in sympathy with characters and write from a place of their humanity, in all the vastness of humanity’s capability for complexity: for the same person to be capable of immense selfishness and immense nobility, or deep gentleness and great cruelty. It reminds us that we strive to reflect what is human rather than what is either entirely perfect or entirely evil. I feel like it’s also been good advice for me as a reader. It reminds me to look at things from the characters’ point of view, to not expect them to know what I know,* to remember the circumstances of their lives and the ways in which they may behave differently than I would because of the way they were raised/what their culture prioritizes. It has helped me be less judgmental of characters and while I don’t think it’s made me unaware of the problematic, I think it’s made me a happier reader. Even when I don’t forgive, I can understand, and that reminder of the eternal complexity of the human soul, and its capability for change and redemption, has enriched my reading life. It’s wonderful to realize that you can enjoy reading even more than you did before, and I can only hope for the same for all my readers.

*This is why it is pointless to be angry at the Superhero’s girlfriend when he is off saving the city, and you know he is off saving the city but she doesn’t, so she’s just angry he didn’t make it to little Marcia’s bat mitzvah.

anonymous asked:

This may be old hat, but I have seen people talk about how Shiro clearly favors Keith to the detriment of other team members. Namely, Lance. I don't feel like this very IC, but I wanted to get other opinions and I enjoy your meta.

This is something in fanon that’s always kind of bothered me honestly. I have a whole meta here about how Shiro protects Lance and cares for him throughout Sendak’s takeover. I honestly don’t understand how people could say Shiro doesn’t care enough about Lance when Shiro was literally willing to get captured and tortured again for his sake. “But that was one time!” some fans will say. As if putting your life on the line and getting a few thousand volts of electricity surging down your spine isn’t a big deal apparently?? Shiro cares for Lance, he does. He could’ve won that fight, but he threw it for Lance’s sake. 

Something that I repeatedly see people cite as a sign Shiro “favors” Keith over Lance is their talk before the BOM. Shiro decides he’s going to take Keith with him, and Lance lashes out. He claims Keith is unable to stay calm, and yet, he’s the one losing his temper. And this is only the latest in a long line of instances in which their supposed “rivalry” is really just a one-sided game where Lance is the instigator and Keith repeatedly has to remain calm and either try to make peace or just tune him out. Throughout season 2, he really snaps back. In contrast, Lance has demonstrated again and again that he is childish and self-centered, that he himself has a quick temper. And yet, he’s quick to direct the blame at Keith. Who handles it quite gracefully, might I add.

So yeah, anyway, Shiro was right. It was a good call to bring Keith instead of Lance. But because Lance is often placed upon a pedestal, somehow not coddling him 24/7 can be misconstrued as abuse. I think another reason people are so quick to say Shiro doesn’t treat Lance the way he deserves is because he doesn’t talk Lance through all his insecurity issues. But you know what? If Lance wants to talk about it, then he has to bring it up. The only two people that have actually addressed that directly are Allura and Keith. And both of them only do so after Lance brings it to their attention. If Lance doesn’t speak up or keeps up an act, how is Shiro supposed to see the signs and help? 

More importantly, people act as though all of Lance’s insecurities are somehow Shiro’s fault. Why is that? Shiro has been imprisoned and tortured for a year. His PTSD and consequential paranoia, depression, and anxiety are far more difficult to deal with than Lance feeling upstaged. And yet, Shiro would never presume that this was somehow everyone else’s burden, or that they owed him more because of it. So why should Lance merit special treatment? Yes, Shiro isn’t as attentive with Lance and Hunk. But that’s because they’re so much more well adjusted. 

I don’t mean this badly, it’s just a fact. They came from good, loving homes. Hunk feels fondly enough about his family to want to return, and seems to have no baggage associated it. Lance meanwhile we know was the youngest sibling and somewhat spoiled. They had it good before. There’s nothing wrong with that. Characters don’t have to have traumatic backstories to be deep or meaningful. But this also means that these two aren’t dealing with the same shit as Keith and Pidge. They don’t have Keith’s abandonment issues or the shared grief he and and Pidge feel over losing their family. These two need more reassurance and guidance and comfort, and Shiro is of course there to provide it. 

Bizarrely enough, it also feels like fans are unable to believe that Shiro has friends. Lance treats Hunk significantly better than Keith from day one, and in fact forces his personal vendetta on Keith for purely selfish reasons. But Keith is expected to graciously accept this because “it’s just from Lance’s insecurities.” Meanwhile, Shiro clearly has nothing against Lance and has never singled him out or treated him poorly out of nowhere. Yet he’s accused of favoritism. This favoritism is really just friendship. He knew Keith before Kerberos, was so close with him he literally brought Keith to the launch instead of his own family. They’ve clearly been side by side for a long time, long enough for Keith to develop an intense desire to be with him when he shuts out everyone else. Long enough for Shiro to not be surprised that it’s Keith of all people who shows up to save him. 

Romantic or not, “Shiro and Keith have the closest relationship.” In Joaquim’s own words, that’s canon (source). So of course their interactions will be different from everyone else’s. That gravity and vulnerability is unique to them alone. And honestly? Removing that link is clearly detrimental to both their coping mechanisms. I think it’s selfish for people to expect Shiro to either push Keith away or pull everyone else in. He’s not ready for something like that, and it shouldn’t be forced on him. Everyone else is allowed to have best friends or romance or whatever’s happening here. Why can’t Shiro? Why is that so wrong? And, to take this in another direction–were Lance to somehow become Black Paladin, does that mean he has to distance himself from Hunk? That he can’t still be interested in Allura? No, I don’t think so. 

And I mean, Shiro does trust Lance, you know? He does still take Lance’s input into account. When Lance says he wants to try to make that impossible shot in Beta Traz, Shiro lets him. Shiro trusts him. And when he makes it? Shiro compliments him! And the reaction is immediate–Lance is clearly thrilled. So yes, Shiro does think Lance is capable of great things. Yes, Shiro lets Lance know when he does a good job and wants to be supportive of him. That much is clear.

I think the other reason why people assume Shiro is somehow biased against Lance because he made Keith Black Paladin instead. And, I’m going to be completely straightforward here–the idea of Black Paladin Lance just makes no sense to me. Neither in the narrative nor thematically and it certainly doesn’t fit with his character development. The thing is, I think people have lost sight of what Black Paladin really means. It’s not a popularity contest. It doesn’t mean you’re the “best” and you shouldn’t just want your fav to have that spot. Lance is far more suited to the role of a Red Paladin, as reflected in his parallels with Alfor, his talk with Allura, and his character arc. To quote my other meta:

It’d be a huge setback and really detract from his character development. When he sits in the Black Lion for “like half a varga” Lance’s main motivation here is seeking his own glory. His character arc is about learning to grow past that and see the bigger picture and realize everyone in Voltron is part of a whole and you’re not better because you’re the leader. 

The way he treated Keith earlier in that episode was also incredibly malicious considering the guy was grieving the loss of the person he loved most. And Lance still has the audacity to spit on Shiro’s last “dying” will and continually provoke Keith until he lashes out or leaves. Learning to see the wrong in that and instead supporting Keith was a huge step for him, and I don’t see why he’d ever still take Black after that. 

It also makes no sense thematically. When Keith steps into Black again, he says, “I know this is what you wanted for me, Shiro. But I’m not you. I can’t lead them like you.” And Lance just goes, “This is your moment.” Keith’s concern first and foremost is with what Shiro wanted and what’s best for the team. Lance just wants to steal the spotlight. He has no intrinsic connection to the Black lion through his bond with Shiro the way Keith does. He also doesn’t have those thematic parallels to Zarkon the way Keith does–instead, he’s recognized as being very similar to Alfor. 

People act like Shiro and Keith stole away Lance’s chance at leadership, but Shiro wasn’t even considering anyone else. Lance was never even in the running. 

The thing is, I kind of understand where people are coming from. To my knowledge, a lot of fans find Lance to be the most relatable, and reflect on him–likewise, I often do this with Keith. But anyway, people really feel for Lance and see their own insecurities through him. But that still doesn’t mean everyone should drop everything to immediately focus on him. Shiro is a good leader. Shiro cares about all of his paladins. Shiro by no means has anything against Lance. But that doesn’t mean he should be given the spot as Black Paladin just because he’s Lance, or that Shiro should be micromanaging his and the other paladins’ emotional needs 24/7 when he’s just trying to get by himself. I understand people feeling for Lance and wanting to see him reach his full potential. But that doesn’t mean everyone has to bow down to him. In fact, going by his daydreams and personal arc–this would significantly negate a good amount of his character development. 

*cracks knuckles* Okay, so we’re doing this.

Let’s talk about Sherlock North.

Sherlock North is a new Holmesian adaptation that was announced yesterday.  It is described as a contemporary crime fiction series, taking place in Finland during Holmes’ Hiatus.  While on the run, he ends up solving some cases in a small town with the help of someone named Johanna Watson.

In the space of twenty-four hours, the tag is FULL of people saying it’s going to be awful, that it’s homophobic and engaging in ‘het-swapping’, that Watson being a woman is boring and overdone, etcetera etcetera.  The entire tag is full of this.  Twenty-four hours old, not even close to being filmed or produced, and the tag is full of people decrying it as bad.

I mean, we know NOTHING about this adaptation.  There’s a Holmes, there’s a Watson, takes place during the Hiatus, that’s it. Boom.  What the hell is there to hate yet?

Those of us who are veteran Elementary fans are familiar with this, of course.  We’ve lived through this before, and still live through it because people continually fail to understand that if you’re ragging on something, you should avoid landing it in the tag.  But let’s go ahead and address some of the things people are saying about Sherlock North.  Let’s take a look at the claims and see if they hold any water.

Because Watson is a woman, it means that Holmes/Watson won’t be a homosexual pairing; that’s homophobic.

Come here.  Sit down.  I’m going to hold your hand through this, because this is going to hurt.

Holmes and Watson aren’t a canon gay pairing.

I wanted to say it quickly, like ripping a bandaid off.  It’s going to hurt, it’s going to sting, but it also needed to be done.  The truth of the matter is that Sherlock Holmes and John Watson, in the original canon, aren’t a homosexual pairing.  Now, we can certainly talk about how we interpret the text (I am a lifelong Holmes/Watson shipper; I will go down with that ship), and subtext, and coding, and all of these things, but the fact of the matter is that, in canon, Holmes and Watson are never actually written as romantically together.  Again, in terms of subtext and the way we interpret it?  Absolutely, it is easy to see them as being in love and so married and all.  But it isn’t canon.  It’s all interpretation.

What this means is that making Watson a woman is not, in itself, homophobic.  They are not ‘het-swapping’ because neither character was written as explicitly gay.  It’s just not possible.  No one is removing a real homosexual relationship from the story.

I know, it fucking sucks that it’s 2017 and we’ve never had a mainstream media Holmesian production with an explicitly queer Holmes or Watson, LET ALONE an explicitly queer Holmes and Watson that are in a relationship together.  I know that a lot of the people in the Sherlock North tag right now are angry, betrayed, bitter BBClock fans who thought that their show would make the subtext text, only to find that that didn’t happen.  And it sucks, I get that.  But that doesn’t make a totally different show homophobic.  And being hurt doesn’t excuse lashing out at a show and making unfounded accusations when, again, it was literally announced twenty-four hours ago and we know nothing about it.

If this is your argument against Sherlock North, how about you go watch some adaptations with queer characters?  How about The Adventures of Jamie Watson (and Sherlock Holmes), which is on youtube?  In that show Watson is bi, and Holmes is ace, and a number of the supporting cast also have LGBTQ identities.  Or S-her-lock, which can also be found on youtube.  Watson is trans and Holmes is an aro-ace.  I can recommend both of those adaptations wholeheartedly.

Watson as a woman is boring; a woman as the sidekick and help-meet, how original.

That’s primarily a matter of opinion, and you’re welcome to it, but I have to say, I’m offended on canon Watson’s behalf.  That’s all you think Watson is?  A sidekick? A help-meet?  I know Holmes calls him that in canon, but it’s also Holmes who claims that all emotion is useless and then tries not to cry when Watson gets shot.  I wouldn’t think of him as a reliable narrator, is all I’m saying.

And Watson as a sidekick is… I mean, I guess technically Watson COULD fit into that role, but that rather diminishes what a good Watson is.  A good Watson is brave, and loyal, and stubborn, prone to a temper at times, clever, a full partner in the investigations, compassionate and insightful, generous, self-sacrificing… what I’m saying here is, if you read the canon and just saw Watson as a sidekick, I suggest you go read it again.  And bring along the lenses that help you interpret the text as queer, because those lenses will definitely help you remember that narrators are often unreliable.

Watson as a woman is overdone.

Let’s see, in terms of mainstream media adaptations, I know of FIVE where Watson is a woman while Holmes is a man.  FIVE. They are:

They Might Be Giants (1971), with Joanne Woodward playing Mildred Watson; The Return of the World’s Greatest Detective (1976), with Jenny O’Hara playing Joan ‘Doc’ Watson; The Return of Sherlock Holmes (1986), with Margaret Colin playing Jane Watson; 1994 Baker Street (1993), with Debrah Farentino playing Amy Winslow; and Elementary (2012-), with Lucy Liu playing Joan Watson.

Five women Watsons. If we expanded the selection to include women Watsons against women Holmeses in mainstream media… we have six. That sixth one is Russian, btw. Not sure how mainstream it actually is, given that it doesn’t even have a Western world release.

If that’s your idea of overdone, I hate to break it to you about men Watsons and men Holmeses…

They only ever make Watson a woman so that Holmes and Watson can be in a romantic relationship together without having to incorporate a gay romance- THAT’S homophobic!

See point one regarding the homophobia.

But in the adaptations where Watson is a woman, IS there always a romantic relationship between Holmes and Watson?  Is this actually a thing?  This is a rhetorical question, I know the answer- no, they’re not always a romantic item when Watson is a woman.  In the most popular of the five adaptations above, They Might Be Giants, yes, Watson and Holmes are in a romantic relationship by the end.  The film is a cult classic, so I can see why it has imprinted on everyone’s mind, and why the heterosexual-appearing (bisexuality is a thing! As is pansexuality! As is asexuality! Not all of these are visible from the outside!) relationship between a woman Watson and man Holmes is something everyone remembers.

But in the other four? One can maybe argue sexual chemistry in some of them (it would take some arguing, though; it’s more subtext than text), but there is no actual romantic relationship between Holmes and Watson.  So if the creators of these productions made Watson a woman in order to have a romantic relationship with Holmes without queerness, they did a horrible job of it, because they forgot to actually include the romantic relationship.

(Fuck, those of us who watch Elementary just want Holmes and Watson to fucking HUG.)

Making Watson a woman isn’t progressive, it’s regressive; even if you get rid of the romantic relationship stuff, they often remove Watson’s key characteristics, like Watson being a doctor, or Watson being in the military.

Every single woman Watson is a doctor of some form.  Some of them aren’t practicing doctors, it’s true; neither was canon Watson when we first meet him, and in the stories he doesn’t actually start practicing medicine again until after he marries Mary Morstan, which happened in ~1887/1888 (don’t get any Holmesian started about dates…).  1888 was a full seven years after he met Holmes.  So even canon Watson, while having a medical degree, was not a doctor when we first meet him.

As for the military stuff… look.  In the first place, in the US military, women couldn’t serve in combat until 2013.  For the UK, restrictions on women in combat weren’t lifted until 2016 (though they could serve as combat medics and join other, technically non-combat groups).  But in the second place, and more importantly, our canon Watson served in the imperialist, colonialist British military in the Victorian era, a deeply awful time when the military engaged in genocides.  England is somewhat ashamed of that heritage, at least on some level (not on enough levels, of course, and not enough to get them to knock it off even now, but that’s neither here nor there).  Why the fuck would we want Watson serving an imperialistic goal, especially if a show doesn’t have the time or resources or, hell, interest to unpack what all of that means?  Very few shows can engage well in the complexities of military service, even ones ostensibly centered around them (*squints at NCIS*).  Frankly, I’d rather my Watson not serve in the military this time around if it means not having to deal with showrunners struggling and failing to make sense of the military mindset.

(ETA: Winslow was with the Red Cross during the Panama invasion. Thanks @sanguinarysanguinity!)

(Disclaimer: my entire family is military; believe me when I say this shit is complex, and needs a lot of energy devoted to it to do it right.)

The name fucking sucks.

Well.  I won’t argue with you there.

(Anybody know if this is just a translation of what the name is???  Because then I understand why it’s so bad.  Is it just a working title?)

The sum up

Take a look at all of those complaints I listed.  These are the complaints I saw over and over and over again when I went through the Sherlock North tag today.  Are you sensing a theme here?  Is there something in common with all of these arguments?

I want an explicitly queer Holmesian adaptation as much as the next H/W shipper.  I dream of it.  If someone gave me money to make my own adaptation, hells to the yeah would make them queer and in love.

But that doesn’t actually seem to be anyone’s main problem, to be honest.  The main problem people seem to have is that Watson is a woman.  

Someone can argue till they’re blue in the fact that the reason they’re upset about a woman Watson is because they want a gay Holmes and Watson relationship, but the fact of the matter is, we don’t have that relationship in any media, at all, and yet people still watch that media anyway.  And you can certainly be sad about the potential for a gay relationship being gone.  I do get that, and respect that.  

(Sidebar: in the world of things I find hilarious is the fact that, in this adaptation, Holmes and Watson COULD BE a gay couple!  They could be happily married!  Because John Watson could be back in London, sad because his husband was killed by Moriarty because THIS TAKES PLACE DURING THE HIATUS. Johanna might be a totally separate character!  Or Johanna IS our Watson, and Holmes didn’t know Watson before the Hiatus in this adaptation.  You know why that’s a possibility?  BECAUSE WE KNOW EXACTLY THREE THINGS ABOUT THIS ADAPTATION.)

But the hate?  That’s some bullshit right there.

If your issue is that Sherlock North is yet another adaptation where Holmes and Watson won’t be a gay couple, I do understand that disappointment. I would also like to point out that just because Holmes and Watson won’t be a gay couple in Sherlock North doesn’t preclude queerness, so you will want to rephrase that argument.  Watson could be a lesbian.  Holmes could be ace.  One or both could be bisexual.  Remember that queerness is this whole big range of things.  We don’t know enough about this production yet to say one way or another.  Just remember that two white dudes touching isn’t the only way to be queer, and that disappointment over the lack of white dudes touching shouldn’t lead to woman-bashing.

And if a woman Watson is your issue you don’t need to worry.  There are literally hundreds of other mainstream media adaptations with man Watsons.  In some of them, there are barely any women at all!  You can avoid women to your heart’s content.

Ultimately, most of the arguments against Sherlock North are just ridiculous.  It may suck.  It may be brilliant.  But it doesn’t have a cast, or a production crew, or any fucking funding yet, so we literally know not a single thing other than a general, broad concept.  So take a deep breath and step back.  Go hate women elsewhere.

(You know what I would like to see?  Some of this same outrage if Sherlock North ends up being a predominately white cast.  But if it has a white cast, suddenly we’ll hear all about how Scandanavia is just so white, it only makes sense for the cast to be white… and if folks got upset about race problems, they’d need to examine their own favourite Holmesian adaptations more critically, and we all know that ain’t gonna happen.  *sips tea*)

First Contact

This is a very hasty opening section to a story I’m going to write about Humans being the weird ones. For the most part, I’m just going to use the concepts I like and leave out the ones I don’t I also refuse to make the aliens talk like fucking morons such as everyone else does. it pisses me off. there is no reason for them to be both polite and also use regular words instead of sounding like they are vomiting a thesaurus. I also used terms like Light Year and Light Minute even though they are subjective terms applicable only to the ear’s solar cycle because it is better than making up terms that have no context but essentially mean the same thing.


Also, I suck at writing so I apologize in advance.


———————————————————————————————————–


It started three hundred million years ago. The Dareth species was spreading across the galaxy. In only a few hundred years, they had completely conquered it, and had devoted their resources to moving beyond to other galaxies. After a few thousand years, they had taken more and more regions, never stopping, declaring all space to belong to them. But finally, in a supreme effort through the combined forces of 538 hundred species, one galaxy worked together to reclaim their systems. After that monumental and unique victory, the other galaxies followed suit and fought to own their systems again. It took nearly 5,000 years, but the efforts of 247 galaxies containing 350 million species drove the Dareth down to a single solar system.  Trillions of lives were lost from all sides, but the megalomaniacal Dareth were nearly destroyed.

Once they had won, the leading species of the revolution held mass executions, reducing the Dareth to a few hundred children, all in their adolescence. Stripping them of all clothes and tools, they were marooned on a hostile planet in a distant galaxy over 50 billion light years away, devoid of life. The planet was carefully chosen, a careful balance of being able to support life, while also being borderline inhospitable. It was filled with dangerous animals, few edible foods, and was plagued with extreme biomes and fluctuating weather.

No one really expected the children to live, but they thought that they would at least offer the chance. Once they were on the planet, deemed “prison 1”, all species immediately broke contact. And after a few hundred years, they also slowly stopped monitoring the Dareth children who miraculously survived. Since they were children, they were mostly uneducated in the ways of production and the manufacturing of advanced technology, so they initially were capable of little more than cave dwelling and hunting with stone weapons. They developed very slowly, and it seemed that no one had to worry about the Dareth again. After several million years, people referred to them mainly as a mythological monster race, no one really believing that the Dareth really ever existed. They faded into obscurity, eventually remembered only in a legend only history fanatics knew of.

Until one day several millions of years later, that is. An expeditionary task force was exploring a barren galaxy, and came across a primitive radio signal. They traced the source to a solar system a few light years away. Upon entry, they must have triggered an ancient outpost; a message appearing on the main screen. The words were incomprehensible, but a translator ran a few algorithms and after several minutes, showed the message in the crew’s native language. Unfortunately, the message was so short that the software could not fully translate the whole message.

W-rn—: You h-ve e-tered – forb-dde- sector. You h-ve f-ve m–utes before –uthor-t-es t-ke –ct-o-. To        -vo-d arrest, e-ther e-ter your p-ss code or le-ve –mmed—tely for your ow- protect-o-.

A count down timer followed the message.  Unfortunately, the software took a few minutes to translate, and by the time it finished, the counter was in the last 30 seconds.

“What language is that?” Admiral Hot’ath asked no one in particular, knowing full well that all known languages (over 2 trillion) were in the ship’s computer and would have identified it within seconds. Typing a search into the fleet’s contact list, he called the head Archivist “I need you to analyze this message.” He ordered, attaching both the original and translated message to a file, sending it to the Archivist. “Tell me if you think it is an ancient language, or a foreign one.” The female only glanced at it before answering.

“Ancient. I can’t read it, but it strongly resembles Standard Intergalactic it is either a more archaic and older form, or a language that coincidentally is similar to our ancient dialect.”

The admiral nodded in understanding. The message was nothing to be concerned over. The solar system was cordoned off so long ago, that everyone had forgotten that it was even there. Thusly, there were no authorities coming to get them, so they had time before deciding whether to leave or not.

“Sir.” The captain of the flagship interrupted. “Even if no one is here, there is a reason this area was blackzoned, and if anyone finds out we were here, legal actions can still be taken against us.”

He nodded knowingly. “Where did this message originate?”

The communication officer answered. “A small outpost on the planet furthest from the system’s star.” The man brought the co-ordinates up on the main bridge screen. The navigation officer quickly followed up with a map of the system, marking where the planet was.

“We can at least go there.” The admiral said firmly. “If nothing else, we can legally go that far and collect data.” The captain nodded, plotting a course on the map and sending it out to the rest of the fleet.

They planned a small expeditionary force to explore the station and gather artifacts and information. What they found astounded them. It turned out that one of the planets in the solar system was an ancient prison of sorts. The records that had survived was enough for a complete translation of the archaic language, but even so, no one knew who these Dareth were, or why they were exiled to such a distant galaxy, barren of life. No one, that is, except the archivists.

The Admiral again called the head archivist, “Proffessor Lart-tch, do you know who the Dareth were?”

Immediately, the blood drained from the archivist’s skin, the grey flesh turning a sickly white. “T-the Dareth?” she affirmed, hoping that she misheard.

The admiral slowly nodded, grimacing. The reaction was enough to let him know that there was in fact a very good reason they were exiled so far away. “I take it they are not good?”

“To put it lightly.” The female answered. “Though the legend is so old, it is probably exaggerated. But we all thought it was just that. A legend. Or more like a horror story.” She added the end with a shudder. Then with a flash of fear, she started. “We came here because we picked up a radio signal.” Her voice was a whisper, cracking with terror. “We need to leave now!”

The admiral was surprised. “Are they really so dangerous? Only a single outpost was here to watch them, and it was peacefully abandoned.”

“This was a race that had conquered over 500 galaxies. Not planets. Not Solar systems. Not Starfields. Galaxies.”

This time, the blood drained from the admiral’s face. The largest empire recorded in history was a single, unified galaxy. Two was unthinkable. But 500? That was terrifying. “You said that the legend is probably exaggerated though.” He tried to assure himself.

The woman nodded, “Yes, but only in the hundreds. There is lots of evidence that at some point in the distant past, some sort of empire had spread across between two and three hundred galaxies. No one is exactly sure how many, but at that scale, even a hundred off is little difference in scale of even the mightiest empire.”

“H-how did we ever defeat such a force?”

The woman merely shrugged. “The legend is vague on that part. But it ends with a few hundred children being left on a hostile planet with nothing to help them survive. They were essentially sent back to the stone age, and were expected to die. But they didn’t. And they will eventually learn how to leave their planet again and return to kill us all.”

The idea was enough to send a cold stab of fear through the Admiral. “We should leave.”

But before he could give any orders, the communication officer called to him from across the bridge. “Sir, we have received a message via the radio waves coming from the planet identified as Prison 1.”

Another cold stab tore through him. “Can we translate it?”

The officer nodded. “it is primitive, but I have made the adjustments to decipher it. It seems that they are repeating the same message over and over.”

“Is there enough to translate?”

“Barely. It is difficult to read, but it boils down to saying, ‘We are here and want to talk.”

The admiral had no clue what to do. If what he was just told was true, then potentially the most dangerous species to ever live was asking making contact with him, the first foreign species they have seen in millions of years.

After several moments, he decided what to do. “Tell them that we are on the edge of a restricted zone and may not come any closer. We also need to leave as soon as possible before we get in trouble.”

He was visibly shaking in fear, and he knew that there would probably be more messages before they were able to leave. There were still units searching the outpost, and it would take around 30 hours before they were recalled, even if they left immediately. They were 327 lightminutes from the Prison Planet, but that still left time for quite a few messages before they were able to leave.

Sooner than expected, another message arrived. “They are asking if they are in the restricted area, and if they will get in trouble as well.”

“N-no. Tell them it does not affect them.” He stammered out. This was getting out of hand. He was neither a military officer, nor a diplomat and this was something that no one in the entire fleet was capable of dealing with.

Again. A reply much sooner than he wanted. “They are asking why the area is restricted.”

This one was surprisingly easy to answer. “Tell them that we don’t know.” He lied

A few hours later, “They want to know what our protocol for First Contact is.”

The answer to that question was drilled into the explorer so hard, that the words came out before he realized that he was speaking. “Observe and learn until they contact us, then send a survey team to the surface to directly learn as much as possible about the new species. Providing any technological knowledge is prohibited until intergalactic diplomats arrive and officially classify the species and permit trade. Ideally, the envoy will make the decision before any contact. In the unavoidable circumstance that contact is made, we are to treat said species as a Class Three.” He finished, then realizing that the Dareth probably didn’t know what planet classes were, he quickly listed, “Class 1: lower intelligent, incapable of societal structure. Class 2: Upper intelligence, incapable of leaving planet. Class 3: Capable of limited space travel. Class 4: Capable of extended space travel under light speed. Class 5: Capable of FTL travel. Class 6: Capable of Intergalactic travel. And the hypothetical Class 7: Capable of instantaneous travel.”

He listed these quickly, momentarily forgetting the insane levels of danger they were in. fortunately, the message came slower than the others. But it still came. “They are asking if contact takes precedence over the blackzone.”

This was the first question that the admiral was completely at a loss for. The majority of blackzones existed because of environmental dangers the others were for military secrecy and they all took up several solar systems. This was by far the smallest blackzone he had ever even heard of and it did not fall under either category.  “T-tell them that….” He started talking, but he couldn’t think of anything. Fortunately, they didn’t wait for a reply. “Sir, they have sent us a file that seems to be a compilation of their history, biology, anatomy, and information of their planet’s wildlife, fauna, geography, and more.”

“A-are you serious?” he blurted out. The officer nodded. They labeled and organized everything for us. There is even information on their technology and mass medical records. They gave us everything.”

“Are there images of them?”

“Yes sir. Also, they call themselves, ‘humans.’”

“Screen.”

A series of pictures flooded the main screen showing hundreds and hundreds of the Dareths. Some were professional, and some were impromptu. They also greatly ranged in age with varying degrees of quality from brown and a little blurry to full spectral and crisp The newest ones even being three dimensional video. They did not look particularly dangerous, though they did have predatory features. They were bipeds with joint articulation and front facing eyes.  It seemed that they had full body skeletons and were mostly hairless, except for their heads and some of their faces. They were also very diverse. Some had pale skin, some were brown, some were yellow tinted, and more.  On top of photographs and videos, the Dareths also included a single diagram of a Human in a circle. It did not take long for the Admiral to understand that it was a mathematical diagram of the Human’s physiology. “Fascinating.” He whispered. But there was one thing above all else that astounded him. The photographs genuinely looked happy. There were pictures of Humans who were angry and sad as well, but for the most part, they all had kind expressions. If they were the Dareths in the legends, then either they had changed, or they were trying to trick him into letting down his guard.

“Sir,” the intelligence officer spoke up. “The planet has an open network database containing the planet’s combined knowledge. We can cross-reference everything they gave us with that system to see if they deliberately left out information or lied.”

“Unfortunately, I don’t think that we have enough time for that. I want to leave immediately.” Though he was still scared, he did not feel like the Dareths were of any danger or were lying to them. To the communication officer, he ordered. “Record and transmit as follows: Thank you, humans. You have saved us much time and deliberation. With this, we can go back and deliver the information you provided to our government and they will decide what to do next. We are merely an expeditionary unit and have no authority. You have provided us with an easy answer to deal with such an abnormal situation. We will leave as soon as possible and return to our home system without delay.”

When he finished talking, the captain spoke. “Sir, the expeditionary force has returned.”

“Good, we are leaving immediately!” he blurted out.

While the fleet left, they received one last message, “Good bye. We look forward to your return.”

Once they were safely in FTL, he ordered the “human” file to be distributed to all of the ships. In the months it took to return to their home system, everyone had poured over the files and read as much as they could. And frankly, no one knew whether they should be terrified or relieved. By now, the legend of the Dareths had spread throughout the fleet, and despite the history of war and violence that was in the files, there was just as much goodness in them. They seemed to be a fiercely loyal people, extremely innovative, and often benevolent to a fault. This was the trouble. There was no solid trend to determine their species overall personality. Even in war, they would often be kind to their enemies even while they killed them. But when they made an alliance, it was not easily broken; and when they decided to help someone in need, they did everything in their power to do so.

And none of that was even touching their bizarre physiology. They could handle an incredibly wide variety of biomes and conditions, they could survive and recover from what most species would consider life threatening injuries, they ate anything and everything, even if it had no nutritional value or was even dangerous to them. They often underwent drastic changed to their physiology for completely aesthetic reasons. And their medical methods were nothing short from horrific. They actually cut themselves open and put the organs of their dead inside their own bodies and survived. They cut out their organs, and replaced parts of their bodies as though they were machines.

By the time they reached their home, the crew had split in two as to the opinion whether the information they had was true or not. Some said that it made sense for such a domineering race to be capable of such things, while the others insisted that the information was designed to confuse them and make the humans seem stronger than they were. As far as the admiral, he was certain that the information was true. It was all nonchalant, and so strange that it didn’t seem right that the Dareth’s purposefully made it up.

He dutifully handed it over to his superior and up the chain it went. A few weeks later, he was summoned before the King. He knew immediately why. What he didn’t know was if it was a good or bad thing. The escort gave him no time to prepare. They took him from his office to the planetary palace across the continent. He was searched and taken into the throne room, the King and his wife lounging on a large sofa while other nobles of high office lined the room.

Admiral Hot’ath walked forward and knelt before the King and Queen “My liege.”

The king was a large man, but his weight was deceptive, he was an intelligent and cunning man who only appeared to be a lazy slob. So when the King looked down on him with his beautiful wife leaning against him, Hot’ath felt a stab of fear just as powerful as the one he felt facing the Dareth.

“So you are the man who says that there a monsters on the edge of the universe?” the King’s voice was slow and deep, but his tone did not seem mocking.

“Your highness,”

“I kid of course.” The king interrupted, speaking just as slowly. “I have read through all of the reports made on the subject and looked at the Human’s files personally. I understand why so many believe them to be the Dareth’s in the old story, and to be honest, I agree.” His voice gave nothing away, he spoke in nearly a monotone.

Hot’ath relaxed slightly. “I am sure that you know, but I feel that it bears repeating. My fleet did not enter the BlackZone. We remained on the edge and only got so close to explore the outpost, which is not against the law.”

The large king laughed, his bulbous core jiggling as it heaved. “Again, I agree. You have done nothing worth punishment. I have ordered your presence to ask your personal opinion on the information. Do you think that it is reliable, or a Dareth ruse?

After a moment, the admiral replied, “May I speak freely, my liege?”

“I insist it.”

Hot’ath took a breath, “I think that it is all true, my liege.” The crowd around them broke out in a quiet deliberation at his statement. “It is all far too strange to have been made up.” He continued. “I feel like it is subtle and presented as normal. If they were lying, then the lies would have been emphasized and presented as proud aspects of their race. But they record these traits as nothing special. I am certain they would be genuinely surprised if they were to learn about our own physiology and how we are so much weaker compared to them..

The king nodded. “I feel the same. But this is far too dangerous to act one without facts. Tell me why you think they gave the files to us if not for deception.”

“I think that it was an act of trust. I believe that they did so because I was hesitant to go visit their planet. I had told them that they were in a black zone, so they understood that I was not allowed to spend time and wanted to make things easy for me. Also, I do not believe that this was in my report, but my Intelligence officer had access to a global network of their combined knowledge. It was open to everyone. As far as we could tell in the short amount of time we were there, they only provided information that was on the network, that is to say, none of this is a secret to them, and they have no problem with others knowing.”

“That is new information.” The king muttered. “New Knowledge New Light.” The old saying seemed especially applicable here. “I order you to go back. I give you permission to enter the blackzone and go to their planet. Keep at least one ship on the edge out of their range. Under the slightest hint of suspicion, have it leave immediately and return directly to me so we know that they cannot be trusted.

“W-why me?”

“Do not misunderstand. You will have diplomats go with you and a small military escort. But you seem to have earned your rank and are capable of subtle discernment. You will not be doing anything more than your regular job, just with the added knowledge that everything could be a lie. I merely need you to let us know if that is the case.

anonymous asked:

I know you've gotten a lot of Hades/Persephone asks, but I've spent the last three days listening to Hadestown by Anais Mitchell - I have a burning desire to know how your Hades and Persephone would handle the Orpheus and Eurydice mythos?

The first time he hears of Orpheus is when Ares comes to him, in spring, when his wife his gone. Ares only comes to him when his wife is gone.

“Apollo has a son,” he says, dark eyes darting around like there’s something chasing him. There is always something chasing the god of war, and many of them now reside in Hades’s realm. No matter how many times he’s tried to reassure Ares that he’s safe here, he doesn’t believe him.

“Apollo has many sons,” he returns, dry. He reaches out and places two fingers under Ares’s chin, sees the bone-paleness of his skin against the rich red-copper of the younger god’s, and swallows. “You look tired.” Crescent purple bruises are carved deep beneath his eyes.

Ares doesn’t shrug off his touch, but neither does he lean into it. “I,” he finally meets his gaze, and Hades smiles, warm. Ares’s lips twitch up like he wants to return it, but can’t. “I haven’t been sleeping. There’s a war in the East, and they’ve been invoking me for weeks. I think I need to go there.”

He knows. There’s been hundreds of new people in his realm every day. Thanatos and Charon haven’t slept in weeks. Neither has he, for that matter.

“What will you disguise yourself as this time?” he murmurs, “Another general?”

That was the wrong thing to say. Are’s eyes go impossibly distant, and his skin gains a sickly grey hue. His hands aren’t shaking, so Hades has no reason to take them in his own. He can’t decide if he’s disappointed by that or not. “No. I – no. Just a foot soldier. Less guilt that way. Less – less. Just, less, that way.”

Less nightmares, less fear, less blood on his hands. Less of the constant, inescapable battle-fury that keeps him alive, but also keeps him from sleep, even on his best days. When Zeus declared his son the god of war, this probably wasn’t what he had in mind.

Hades hopes it isn’t, at least.

“Be careful,” he says, and Ares flinches.

He grabs Hades’s wrist before he leaves though, and squeezes it so tightly that it would snap if Hades was a mortal man.

There’s that, at least.

~

Persephone wears not the vibrant red that marks her as queen of the underworld, but the soft green that names her the daughter of spring. She sits on a smooth rock in the middle of the sea, her curly dark red hair brushing her bare shoulders. It’s the last day of summer. She goes home tomorrow.

Demeter does not strain to keep her daughter at her side anymore. Now she’s merely content to keep her away from Hades.

“Were you waiting long?” a voice like lapping waves asks in her ear, and Amphitrite sits at her back. She presses a kiss to her shoulder, and her long green hair tumbles down Persephone’s front and blends into her dress.

She tilts her head, allowing Amphitrite to trail salty kisses up her neck. “No. Have trouble sneaking away from your husband?”

She snorts. “I do not sneak.”

“You said you had news from my husband,” Persephone reminds, does not allow herself to become distracted. Not yet.

“About, not from,” she uses a single claw to cut through the back of Persephone’s dress. It falls down to her hips. “They’ve been waging war for months. A bloody horrible thing. And rumor is Ares was in Hades’s realm. People are saying that Ares sends the dead to your husband as tribute.”

People are idiots. Besides, she likes Ares. She does not mind that he visits her husband; she only wishes he would visit her as well. “Is that all?”

Amphitrite shrugs then bites at Persephone’s ear, “Won’t you come to the sea with me? My palace has many places more comfortable than this rock.”

She leans back, pulling Amphitrite down with her, and does not answer.

She is not Poseidon. She does not forget that Amphitrite possesses, but is not to be possessed, and she dares not follow this personification of the sea itself into her domain.

Amphitrite loves her. She may not give her back.

Persephone is not Helen either. She will not be the cause of any wars.

~

Thanatos, the boy who Hades still calls Icarus, sits with his head in his hands.  Hades reaches out and absently runs a hand up and down his spine, thinks not for the first time that he must have been a sight to see with his golden wings, for that glorious moment before he fell. “Persephone should be crossing the shore soon. Why don’t you go and wait for her?”

“I know what you’re doing,” he says, voice muffled, “Styx can bring her. Or she can walk herself, since there’s not a thing in this realm stupid enough to attack her.”

Hades leans down and kisses the top of his spine, “She likes it when you’re there to help her off the boat. Please?”

Icarus turns and glares at him. Hades kisses him below his left eye, lets his lips linger on the delicate skin there. “You’re cheating,” he accuses, a blush high on his cheeks, “this is cheating.”

“Stop working for a couple hours and go get my wife,” he commands softly, “The armies of traumatized dead will still be here when you return.”

Icarus listens ­– finally – and slips away to the river.

Hades looks back over the map. The problem with the dead is they never go anywhere, so his realm only gets bigger. He’s going to need get Hecate so the two of them can raise another city at this rate.

There’s a push in the air, and he startles. No one enters his realm without permission, but he recognizes the outline of the person trying to push through, and allows it. Ares tumbles from the air, and into his arms. He’s covered in blood, his long black hair is soaked through with it.

“Not yours, I assume?” he asks, gripping Ares’s forearms. He’s strung so tightly he’s nearly vibrating.

“I wish it was mine,” he says, somewhere between a scream and a sob. Hades wishes this was the first time Ares had come to him like this.

Ares locks his wrists around Hades neck and pulls him down, knocking them both to the floor in his exuberance. His mouth connects to Hades’s, slick and tasting like sulpher and metal. “I have to go back soon,” he gasps, dragging his lips along the edge of Hades’s jaw, “they’re invoking my name. Distract me until then.”

He still has hours until Persephone will return home, and besides she would not deny him this. “Okay,” he whispers, and when he rolls them over they’re no longer in his office, but his bed. Ares keens and strains his body up towards Hades, and he grabs the young god’s wrists and pins him to the bed. “Do not worry,” he says, and Ares’s whole body glistens red with blood that isn’t his own. “I’ve got you.”

Ares relaxes, just the smallest amount, under his hands.

He’ll take what he can get.

~

She can tell Ares was there before even steps foot in her palace, and knows it for sure when she enters her bedroom to find her husband naked on their bed and covered in blood.

“How is he?” she asks, and he startles, having been so deep in thought he hadn’t noticed her.

“Persephone,” he greets, his whole face going soft as he pushes himself up. He holds out a hand to her, and she doesn’t hesitate to drop her cloak and crawl over the bed to him. She hikes up her dress and straddles him, arms crisscrossing behind his neck. She kisses him slow, licks over the places where Ares had bitten his lips. “I’ve missed you.”

She rolls her hips downward, and is gratified by the way his hands flex on her thighs, “As I have missed you, husband.”

She kisses mortal blood off his skin, and tries not to worry too much about the man who left it there.

He’s survived every war since his birth, and he’ll survive this one too.

~

Aphrodite enters his realm, her hair piled atop her head and held together with copper pins fashioned in the shape of delicate flowers. “Apollo has a son,” she says, biting at her bottom lip.

He and Persephone share a glance before he says, “Apollo has many sons.” He feels as if he’s had this conversation before.

She quirks her lips in a half smile, “This one is different. He plays the lyre, he plays it better than his father even. He plays it so well that – that there are rumors that he can sooth any beast to sleep. And,” she adds, even quieter, “that Ares himself is soothed by his playing.”

“Why are you telling us this?” Persephone asks coldly. Hades places his hand on top of hers. They like Aphrodite, after all.

“Because I know Ares cares for Hades,” her eyes flicker over to him, “and I believe Hades cares for him as well. I – I could not accept his proposal. My love was not the peace he thought it would be. But I wish him well.”

“We can neither kidnap nor kill a son of Apollo,” Persephone says. Hades feels compelled to add that they shouldn’t want to either, but he can already tell this is a situation which is quickly going to spiral out of his control, if it hasn’t already.

Aphrodite raises a hand to tuck her hair behind her ear, then lowers it when she realized her hair is already up. “He loves a mortal girl, Eurydice. If she were to die, he would be beside himself in grief. Enough to take his own life, even.”

“Really,” Persephone says flatly.

Aphrodite continues, “Then he would be a subject of your realm. You could compel him to help Ares, could you not?”

“I have subjects, not slaves,” he says, “I can’t make him do anything.”

Persephone puts her hand on his arm, eyes bright. “I have a better idea.”

~

Aphrodite’s plan had merit, but this is better. Smarter. It gives Apollo less reason to be upset at them later, since his son comes to them now on his recommendation. Although he’s far too attached to all his limbs to dare cross her regardless.

Orpheus bargaining with her husband now, and she’s given Hades strict instructions, that Orpheus must agree to play in their courtyard for eternity if he fails. He won’t cross her either, even if he wants to, even if he’s not totally comfortable with this plan.

She knew when she married him that he was too soft hearted for his own good. It’s half the reason she married him in the first place.

For now she circles the girl that the half-god had been so willing to risk everything for. She’s attractive enough, but plain, and she has no particular talents nor is she overtly clever. “What makes you so special?” she asks, when she sees nothing but an average young woman.

Eurydice smiles then, and she’s much prettier that way. “He loves me,” she answers, cheeks flushing. She hesitates, but asks, “Will you really let him take him me back?”

“As long as he listens, as long as he leaves the underworld without looking back at you, you are free to follow him and return to the world of the living,” she agrees, but knows that will never come to pass.

Orpheus loves her too much to risk leaving without her, and his doubts will overcome his hope. He will look back, and become trapped here forever.

~

The window of one of the spare rooms is open, and the most beautiful playing comes through. Hades sits at the edge of the bed, and reaches to run the back of his finger across Ares’s cheek.

The war still rages. A war always rages. Yet Ares sleeps, the bruises under his eyes becoming lighter by the day.

He turns toward Hades, straining in sleep for his touch. Hades hesitates, but his realm is stable enough for now. He slips beneath the covers, and almost immediately Ares curls into his side, tangling their legs together and pillowing his head on Hades’s chest so he can feel Ares’s damp exhales on his sternum.

There will always be another war, and Ares cannot stay. But for now he sleeps peacefully in Hades arms, and that will have to be enough.

~

Persephone sits in her garden in the courtyard, listening to the same beautiful song.

“This one is my favorite,” Eurydice says, seated besides her and beaming.

She glances over to Orpheus, who grins wide as he performs a love song for his beloved wife. Behind him is the cottage tucked in the corner of their courtyard where Eurydice and Orpheus live.

“Mine too,” she says.

Hades was too soft hearted for his own good. She’d known that when she married him.


gods and monsters series, part xi

Q&A Cristina, Kieran, Mark and the politics of trust

“clockwork-artifices said: Hello, Cassie. I<3 Cristina, so i wanted to ask about her. She’s been described as someone who’s been hurt and betrayed in the past (and recently), therefore she doesn’t really trust people that easily now, so with that in mind i couldn’t totally understand 

spoilers

Keep reading

Damen/Laurent Rec List

Because @playingfetchwithdinosaurs was finally seduced into reading this amazing series and then she came to me because she needed more. Also, coincidentally, @notagoodplace4gods finished yesterday CP, but told me only today that she was freaking out over their love and she needed more so here I am giving more to them ;)

💖: my absolutely favorite stories about those Kings

Canon AU

In the Gardens by JustDrinkTea 2,101

“I doubt your disappearance would go unnoticed,” Laurent countered, head tilting slightly. He was teasing. Damen couldn’t get enough of it.

“Is that an excuse to not go?”

“It’s a challenge.”

💖 Sent Away by Josselin [Part 1 of Sent Away] 2,504

A series of vignettes of young Laurent’s life when he is sent to be fostered in the Akielon court.

Courtship by songofthe52hertzwhale 5,425

Damen just wants to court Laurent. Nobody in Vere makes it easy for him, least of all the man he hopes to marry.

💖 Dear Aledosia, by wendlaa 12,368

“Oh,” Laurent finds himself saying. Damianos has excused himself from his conversation, and has begun to make his way through the crowd. Here stand the Princes of Vere, after all. The ethereal Veretian Prince brothers. Laurent lifts his eyes towards the ceiling, arching his brows. “Heavens,” he says, voice tight.

Auguste chuckles. “You have a minute head start.”

Laurent ducks away.

Keep reading

Mafia!Got7 when they think your dead but your just going shopping/ maknae line

Got7 as Mafia members when they can’t find you and think your dead, but your actually just going shopping.

requested ~~


Youngjae:

Finally you had time to buy a new dress! Youngjae and you were planning a big party with his gang and since you wanted to didn’t seem to find a nice dress in your closet, you were now at the shopping mall. It didn’t take long and you found a beautiful, dark blue dress that was exactly your taste. You smiled and walked to the changing room, satisfied that you found something so fast. You tried it on and looked at yourself in the mirror. It didn’t look to bad, hopefully Youngjae would like it too.

You decided to take a picture of the dress and send it to him, so you searched for your phone and unlocked it. But instead of opening the camera you noticed that you had about 5 missed calls. All of them from your boyfriend Youngjae. Suddenly you sighed: You had forgotten to tell him that you were going out. You quickly called him back and he picked up quite fast.

„(Y/N), where the hell are you? Is everything ok? Did someone kidnap you?“

You told him that you were only going shopping and everything was fine. At first you heard nothing, then he talked to someone on the other side of the line.

„Jackson, put that machine gun away. They said the truth, they really didn’t kidnap her. Yugyeom, why are you even fighting with my bread knifes?!!“

You heard disappointed mumbling and you just had to laugh. These boys…

Originally posted by yjarssunshine


Bam Bam:

Bam Bam and you had planned a trip to he beach for ages, especially since he bought a mansion with a private beach last month so that you guys wouldn’t be bothered by his enemies. You were looking forward to it, not just because you liked the ocean but also because you were finally going to spend lots of time with your boyfriend. Ever since he was a part of the mafia, time for each other wasn’t something you had often.

It was two days before the trip when suddenly you facepalmed yourself out of the blue. You had planned this whole trip and considered every little detail, yet you had forgotten to buy yourself a bikini or swimsuit. Nice. Good job, (Y/N), you thought to yourself. But in the end all you could do was go and buy yourself some swimwear. The shopping mall was closing in 2 hours and tomorrow was sunday, so you had to hurry.

There were still lots of people at the mall when you arrived, and you went to your favorite store, not really hurrying anymore. At least you wouldn’t be the only costumer, that was always awkward so you avoided it. You entered the little, cute store and walked to the swimwear section.

4 stores later you finally left the shop with a bag. That hadn’t been as easy as planned, but at least you’d found a nice bikini! You made your way to the exit when suddenly, you felt arms wrapping around your waist. You jumped and tried to punch the stranger, suddenly panicking. You hadn’t even considered the fact that somebody might try to abduct or even kill you. Which wasn’t even offbeat ever since your relationship with Bam Bam went viral.

„Eum, excuse me? I searched the whole city for you, I thought you were dead, finally I found you and know your trying to punch me?“

You sighed in relief when you heard Bam Bams sulky but also amused voice. You wanted to defend yourself, but he interrupted you.

„It’s ok, don’t even bother, jagi. You’ll make it up to me anyways.“

You could basically hear the wink he gave you.

Originally posted by kunpimuak

 Yugyeom:

Today you got up quite early in the morning, so Yugyeom was still asleep. You smiled at his sleeping form. He seemed so inncocent, even cute. But you knew better, neither was he innocent nor was it cute when he was killing his enemies without any effort. But that was the life he chose and you respected that decision. You walked into the kitchen to prepare some breakfast, but when you opened the fridge, you frowned. Why was it so… empty? You rolled your eyes. Probably Jin again. That hacker was eating like a beast. Since you didn’t want to wake up Yugyeom, you decided to go to the grocery store. It would only take 10 minutes, no need to leave a message for your boyfriend who was still sleeping like a stone.

You ended up leaving the store about 40 minutes later, since you’d met an old high school friend of yours and wanted to catch up with her a little bit. The two of you had exchanged phone numbers and now you where walking home in quite a good mood.

When you opened the door and went to the kitchen, an unusual scene appeared in front of you. Yugyeom and about 5 of his closest friends where sitting around the kitchen table. Their leather jackets didn’t really seem to fit the colourful flower print on the table cloth. When they saw you, they got silent. Some were watching you with amusement, some seemed to be confused. Yugyeom sighed and closed his eyes.

„There you are. Guys, just leave now. Wait. Jin, put the apple back.“

After all of them left, you sat next to Yugyeom and looked at him with a confused look.

„(Y/N). Please don’t tell me you where just grocery shopping. I think that was the first time I was actually scared.“

He pulled you onto his lap and hugged you. He really must’ve been scared for you, considering the fact that he wasn’t even mad.

„You know, I’m quite hungry now tho. And the plan me and the guys just made was extremely good, so maybe I’ll just blow up the other gang anyways.“

Originally posted by holyfuckmark


 

Oh my god. I got so carried away with these O.o  They basically got little Imagines. I’m sorry X’D

I hope you guys like it anyways~~

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