i cannot remember the last time i was this nervous about posting something

3

When Bodhi is fifteen he and his mother watch from the marketplace as an imperial destroyer blots out the sky over NiJedha. His mother curses under her breath and prays. He cannot help but marvel at the sheer size of it. His mother grabs him by the elbow and presses through the growing crowd to get them home. He can’t help but glance back despite the anxiety settling in the pit of his stomach. His home becomes a stranger to him as ground forces arrive in huge convoys filling the city with faceless white armor at every turn. 

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A Year Ago Today

Pic by Roxanne Garcia-Bell

Full disclosure, I kind of hate the Prince related “a year ago today” and “I was there” posts in regard to the events of the past year. I am not a mourner or a “sad about Prince passing” person…and even kind of roll my eyes at the sad face emoji reactions on every post with his face on it. For me I’d much rather celebrate his life and be happy that we got to experience his work.

So I was taken aback by all the emotion I felt on seeing the April 14th concert poster someone posted to Tumblr.

And the emotions I felt driving in to work today while listening to my customary mix of his songs…as I do EVERY morning to get pumped for the workday.

And the emotions I’m feeling now when realizing the annoyance about the mourning is a symptom of my own emotional repression…and how letting some of it through now is a lot…

So I’m writing it out to help defuse…

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The Beginning (Jughead x Female Reader)

Word Count: 1268 words

Warnings: none

A/N: So this is my first time posting anything I’ve written and I’m really nervous but I hope you enjoy it!

It was one month after Jason Blossom had been declared missing. One month after Cheryl had been found, wet and crying at Sweetwater river but it had been one year and one month since anyone had seen the other Blossom sibling. (Y/n) Blossom had left Riverdale with the idea firmly planted in her and her parent’s head that she would never return but as she crossed the bridge over Sweetwater River and passed the old Riverdale sign, she had a feeling that she won’t be leaving Riverdale anytime soon.
…..


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“Cautious” - Part 1

Cautious” - Part 1

My Masterlist - Here

Bucky Barnes x Reader

Bruce Banner x Reader (Father-Daughter type of relationship)

Word Count: 2,064

Key: Y/N = Your Name, L/N = Your Last Name, H/C = Your Hair Color, E/C = Your Eye Color

Warnings: Cursing (I naturally curse a lot and it comes out in my writing sometimes. Sorry.), Mentions of Violence/Torture.

Summary:  Bucky is now pretty much rehabilitated and able to be part of the group. He has nightmares sometimes, but not nearly as much as he used to. Reader was taken by Hydra and made the subject of experiments due to her having powers (something similar to the force, but not the force). The team rescues her after a mission and takes her in. She struggles with control sometimes, is very skittish sometimes, and hasn’t talked to anyone since arriving at the tower. She only talks to Bruce Banner. Soon enough, Bucky takes an interest in her. Let’s see how this unfurls.

Originally posted by whadewilson

Author’s Note: This is my first Avengers piece. So I am very nervous about this. There will be multiple parts to this specific piece. This first part mostly focuses on the reader’s backstory and how she meets the Avengers. Please let me know how you like it! I will be posting more parts as I write them. I’m just at a bit of a standstill due to school. But I will be continuing this along with a few other stories.

This is my interpretation of the characters and the reader is one of my own creation. I leave the names and such open so you can put your own name and features in or you can create your own. I know this may not please everyone, but I’m writing this for myself. I hope people will enjoy this fanfic, but I know that you can’t please everyone.

Also a big thank you to @goodnightwife for being my beta reader and letting me bounce things off of her! 

If you would like to be tagged in any future pieces, please let me know! And as always, feedback is greatly appreciated!

<3

- DreaSaurusREX

Tags : @luciebell-writes @goodnightwife


   You remember flying to the big city. You were so happy and carefree back then. You were about to start another year at college. You were going to get your degree and be someone in this world. You knew you had inhuman abilities, but they never really popped up or anything. The last time you had an incident was when you were 8. So you were sure it was a one time thing and must have grown out of it. This ideal world came crashing down pretty fast.  

A few months into the semester, you were at a seminar that was about major scientific developments and how they could impact society in a few years. As you were leaving, a couple of men came up to you.

“(Y/N) (L/N)?”


“Yes? Is there something I could help you with, gentlemen?” And with that, you were knocked out.

When you woke up, you were on an examination table in some sort of lab facility. Your arms and legs bound. There was a weird symbol on the door that looked eerily familiar. You tried to rack your brain for some sort of clue as to what the symbol meant or where you’d seen it before, but your brain was still fuzzy from waking up. Your thoughts were interrupted when the door opened and one of the men that stopped you in the street stood before you.

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anonymous asked:

can you pretty pretty please write more of that oq amnesia au that you wrote? I would love to read about her and Robin

Thank you so much for the prompt! I hope you’ll like it! :)

You can read the first part here - http://ourheroregina.tumblr.com/post/143582603729/outlaw-queen-au-3-amnesia

Happy Easter everyone! 🐣

(…)

Robin has never thought he would find himself in this certain place on Easter night ever again. But here he is, walking around the empty and quiet town where years ago he met the woman of his dreams, the one and only who stole his heart.

But that woman is not his anymore. She’s the past now.

Maybe it’s one of the reasons why he came here, to say goodbye to all the memories and her (No, he came here for quite the different reason:  to recall as many memories of her as he can).

He curses himself quietly when he remembers their last meeting. From the day she appeared on his doorway, they spent a few months together, traveling around the places they’ve visited before in hopes that it will wake her memory and she’ll remember something, anything.

But they’ve been left with nothing. Her memories were lost forever.

It was breaking him into pieces to see once the strongest woman he knew this confused. He did everything in his power to help her: told her everything about them, about her. And she appreciated his help, she really did, he could see how thankful she was. Her smile was the best award.

But then one day she announced that it’s time she goes back to Storybrooke to her family (she’s grimaced at the word) and he can come back to his life for there’s no reason to waste any of their time.

That moment Robin’s heart clenched. He couldn’t imagine his life without her, not when he’s had her back. Driven by the thought, he had pulled her closer and kissed her without a second thought. Regina’s pulled away immediately, slapped him and that was the last time he saw her.

He blamed himself for ruining everything way too many times. The first time he was the one who ruined their relationship, and yet again he did that again. He knew she was uncertain and confused, and she certainly wasn’t the woman who falls in love easily.

Now all he has left are shatters of their relationship and on this special evening he decides to remember it all, to hurt himself one last time and then move on (he’ll never move on, five years already proved that).

He finds himself in the town square, the place where ten years ago he’s laid his eyes on the woman who turned his world around for the first time. He sits down on the bench that holds so many dear memories of her and closes his eyes, exhales.

“Would you mind if I sat down?”

He doesn’t know how many minutes pass until he hears the voice of her, but his eyes snap open immediately and he finds her standing there in front of him, nervously playing with her fingers.

She doesn’t wait his answer and sits down. Her body is tensed, she looks nervous and tired, but she still looks as beautiful as always and those dark eyes are wide and shining something he can’t quite catch.

He smiles despite the ache in his chest because she doesn’t remember this place but yet his stories had the effect on her because here she is, after months of not seeing each other they meet in the place where everything’s started.

“I’m sorry,” she’s the first to break the silence between them. Robin turns to look at her, ready to say that there’s no need to apologize when she adds quietly, “My heart took me here on this special evening.” Her voice is guarded, and it’s so Regina – she’s opening up, just a bit, but her walls are still around her.

Robin smiles in response.

“I wanted to apologize for the last time,” she says then, looking down at her hands. “You helped me so much and I-“

“You have nothing to apologize for,” he assures her and his hand lands on hers before he can think of it, and he opens his mouth to apologize but she’s smiling, squeezing his hand. “I shouldn’t have kissed you.”

She nods her head and the silence surrounds them again, but now it’s peaceful, soothing. He holds her hand and his heart is fluttering in his chest, and he wants nothing more than to hug her and hold her for the rest of his life but he remembers that she’s not his Regina, she doesn’t remember what he does.

“I still don’t remember anything,” she tells him quietly after awhile, “but Robin, I can’t stop thinking about you. I try to keep you out of my thoughts but-“ her voice breaks for a moment and she inhales sharply, squeezing his hand “-but  you’re all I see every time I close my eyes. When I met you, I felt alive again. I-“ there are tears shining in her eyes now and he cannot help but cup her face in his hands, and wipe a single tear with his thumb.

All talking stops and then unconsciously she’s leaning over and so is he, and her eyes close just the moment before his lips land on hers. She doesn’t push him away this time. Instead she responds to his kiss, wraps her arms around his neck and kisses him as if her life is depending on him.

He looks straight into her eyes when they pull away and there’s an unspoken agreement between them, one that tells that they’ll give each other a chance.

No words are needed then.

Regina rests her head on his shoulder while Robin wraps his arm around her waist, pulling her to his side, sighing in relief after a long time.

They stay like this until the sunrise and then Regina invites Robin to spend Easter with her and Henry and the smile that spreads across his face is enough to make her chuckle quietly as she leans over and kisses him again.

They are going to be just fine even if she doesn’t get her memories back, Robin thinks as he takes her hand and together they walk to celebrate the most beautiful holiday of the year.

Patron Saint Bluebell

Hey, listen. I know the world’s on fire. But listen.

I’ll tell you a thing.

On the day after the election, when everything was worst and all I could do was go numb or cry hysterically, do you know what gave me the most comfort?

It wasn’t the words of Lincoln or Gandhi or Maya Angelou, it wasn’t Psalms or poetry, it wasn’t my grandmother, it wasn’t contemplating the long arc of history. It wasn’t even hugging the dog.

It was the Twitter account @ConanSalaryman.

This is a joke account. It’s somebody who narrates as if Conan was working in an office. Tweets usually sound like “By Crom!” roared Conan. “You jackals cannot schedule a mere interview without gathering in a pack and cackling?!” or “Conan slammed his sword through his desk. Papers and blood rained through the office. Monday was slain.”

I followed it awhile back and have found it funny. (I’m not a huge Robert Howard fan inherently, but whoever is writing these does the schtick well.) But if it had not posted once that day, no one would have noticed at all.

Instead, Conan the Salaryman posted something inspirational. And then replied to dozens of people replying to him, for hours, in character, telling them that by Crom! it was only defeat if we did not stand up again, that the greatest act of strength was to keep walking in the face of hopelessness, that the gods have given the smallest of us strength to enact change, that we must all keep going as long as Crom gave us breath, and tyrants frightened Conan not, but we must look to those unable to fend for themselves. (“Though by Crom! We must hammer ourselves into a support network, not an army!”)

I have no idea who is behind that account. But it was the most bizarrely comforting thing I saw all day, in a day that had very little comfort in it. There was this weight of story behind it. It helped me. I think it helped a lot of people. If only a tiny bit–well, tiny bits help.

I have been thinking a lot lately about Bluebell from Watership Down.

There’s absolutely no reason you should remember Bluebell, unless, to take an example completely and totally at random, you read it eleven thousand times until your copy fell apart because you were sort of a weird little proto-furry kid who loved talking animals more than breath and wrote fan fic and there weren’t any other talking animal books and you now have large swaths memorized as a result. Ahem.

Bluebell is a minor character. He’s Captain Holly’s friend and jester. When the old warren is destroyed, Captain Holly and Bluebell are the last two standing and they stagger across the fields after the main characters. By the end, Holly is raving, hallucinating, and screaming “O zorn!” meaning “all is destroyed” and about to bring predators down on them. And Bluebell is telling stupid jokes.

And they make it the whole way because of Bluebell’s jokes. “Jokes one end, hraka the other,” he says. “I’d roll a joke along the ground and we’d both follow it.” When Holly can’t move, Bluebell tells him jokes that would make Dad jokes look brilliant and Holly is able to move again. When Hazel, the protagonist, tries to shush him, Holly says no, that “we wouldn’t be here without his blue-tit’s chatter.”

I tell you, the last few days, thinking of this, I really start to identify with Bluebell.

I am not a fighter, not an organizer, certainly not a prophet. Throw something at me and I squawk and cover my head. I write very small stories with wombats and hamsters and a cast of single digits. I am not the sort of comforting soul who sits and listens and offers you tea. (What seems like a thousand years ago, when I had the Great Nervous Breakdown of ‘07, I remember saying something to the effect that I had realized that if I had myself as a friend, I would have been screwed, because I was useless at that kind of thing. And a buddy of mine from my college days, who was often depressed, wrote me to say that no, I wasn’t that kind of person, but when we were together I always made her laugh hysterically and that was worth a lot too. I treasured that comment more than I am entirely comfortable admitting.)

But I can roll a joke along the ground until the end of the world if I have to. And increasingly, I think that’s what I’m for in this life. Things are bad and people have died already and I am heartsick and tired and the news is a gibbering horror–but I actually do know why a raven is like a writing desk.

So. First Church of Bluebell. Patron Saint.

Keep holding the line.

Okay can I just say something here?

As most of you I’m sure are aware, fandoms (esp on tumblr/in fanfiction) can sometimes blow partially-canon traits really out of proportion and venture over into the realm of the fanon, occasionally really, really far, all the while still claiming these verging-on-the-edge-of-ooc characteristics are canon as hell. The massive chain culture we’ve got going isn’t helping this much (think memes. how long do they take to spread. bout ten minutes). So a couple of people say ‘this character behaves in such-and-such a way’, and boom. Suddenly this is accepted as hard truth the world over. One such trait has been bugging me lately, because I’ve noticed basically everyone assigns it to Draco Malfoy and it’s in almost EVERY DRACO-CENTRIC OR INCLUSIVE FIC. Namely, that he is always cool and collected. Suave. Let me just make something very clear right now.

Draco. Malfoy. Is. Not. Suave.

He is not the personification of the verb ‘smooth’. He is not a graceful statue. He is not void of emotion. He is not continually charming and always in possession of his head, he is DEFINITELY not immune to getting flustered, and he’s not freaking unshakable. Soooo many fics portray Draco as this intimidating, almost godlike marble creature who is forever stoic/coy/unaffected in the face of discomfort. And I get where this is coming from. Yes, Draco is good at shutting down his conscience and feelings of guilt or compassion, yes he is mean, and yes he is a snooty aristocrat with a superiority complex. But this does not mean that he’s incapable of feeling or reacting to touchy situations. In fact, throughout the entire series, one of his most noticeable traits is that he does react to touchy situations, very strongly. Exhibit A:

‘This is very easy,’ Malfoy drawled, loud enough for Harry to hear him. ‘I knew it must have been, if Potter could do it… I bet you’re not dangerous at all, are you?’ he said to the Hippogriff. 'Are you, you great ugly brute?’

It happened in a flash of steely talons, Malfoy let out a high-pitched scream…



'Im dying!’ Malfoy yelled, as the class panicked. 'I’m dying, look at me, it’s killed me!’

I know, this is pre-war Malfoy, but he’s painted as pretty put-together during a lot of Hogwarts era fics as well so I think including this is necessary. Guys, Draco was the biggest drama queen on the planet. It was not hard at all to ruffle his feathers. This child was only cocky when he was completely in control of the situation; any shifting of the playing field and he would either be fuming mad, whining about tattling to his daddy, or running terrified. Fear is a very big element of his character, and that does not ever change, not even in the later books when he drops the theatrics. Draco is not good at handling things during the action, in the here and now. He prefers to work with strategy, to be distanced from what’s going on, so when he’s actually put in a fight-or-flight situation, his natural instinct is always flight. Remember, he is a Slytherin, not a Gryffindor. Self-preservation trumps bravery every time.

He’s certainly not any more collected during the war than he is in his school days. In fact, if anything, it gets worse, as basically all of his swagger disappears and he is little more than a distraught wreck. This kid had panic attacks, he cried in the bathroom to a ghost because he was so scared, he was guilty and traumatized and you cannot tell me that a terrified, messed up kid like that was suave. His attempts at making jabs at the trio all through the sixth year are notably feeble, he’s clearly not good at keeping up a composed appearance at all times as he is described continually as looking pale and sickly and nervous, with “dark shadows under his eyes and a distinctly greyish tinge to his skin”, and when the time comes for him to kill Dumbledore, he’s outright shaking- every word out of his mouth and every action he makes on that tower are positively screaming 'I DON’T WANT THIS PLEASE HELP ME.

Now, I’m not saying he isn’t able to act smug in his post-OotP years. He is, and he can still be threatening and cruel as well. But he isn’t aloof. He isn’t a mountain. Draco Malfoy has a very wide range of emotions, he is not made of steel. In Exhibit B, you can see just how ‘calm and cold’ he is when the trio is brought to Malfoy Manor:

'Well, Draco?’ said Lucius Malfoy. He sounded avid. 'Is it? Is it Harry Potter?’

'I can’t - I can’t be sure,’ said Draco. He was keeping his distance from Greyback, and seemed as scared of looking at Harry as Harry was of looking at him.



 Harry saw Draco’s face up close, now, right beside his father’s. They were extraordinarily alike, except that while his father looked beside himself with excitement, Draco’s expression was full of reluctance, even fear.’

Oh, yeah. The kid’s unreadable.

People, level-headedness during tough situations is NOT a canonical aspect of Draco’s personality. The rest of the time, sure, but not when he’s scared. This behavior isn’t exclusive to the war, either- in every part of his life that we get to see in the books, which is basically his entire growing-up years, he panics when things are looking bad for him. And anyone who says he would get all his old arrogance and snark back after the war ended is being ridiculous, because there is no way that’s the case. After all he suffered, after the shaking of his views and the torture he was forced to use on others and the realization that he was not better than the people they were fighting against, that in fact, he was probably far less than them (which we aren’t explicitly given but HAS TO HAVE HAPPENED after all he saw and considering he didn’t uphold his old pureblood views as an adult and that his entire family just quit fighting for Voldemort during the Battle of Hogwarts; he was only in it for his parents by then, and obviously once they forfeited their side he would have too. He did NOT support Voldemort by the end of the series, and probably saw he was wrong far before this), every last dreg of confidence would’ve been drained from him. Post-war Draco would’ve been a shadow of himself, constantly tortured by guilt and regret and the mark on his arm. Not debonair and in love with himself. Not a playboy (honestly where did this trope even come from the only girl who ever paid him any attention was his fangirl Pansy and apparently his wife). That massive section of his life where he was under Voldemort’s control was not a phase that he could’ve just glossed over. It shaped him. He was broken during that war. And he was never as lordly and impenetrable as he most likely aspired to be in an emulation of Lucius to begin with.

So can we all just stop pretending that Draco Malfoy is unflappable and impervious to emotion please? Because he’s not. He’s really not.

#BrainDump

Ok. It’s been about a week. The long and the short of it? I don’t really feel anything. What does that mean exactly? I have no idea. I thought for sure I’d have a mental breakdown by now. I even shuffled around my calendar to allow time for it to happen. Maybe a decade plus of dealing with my many particular idiosyncrasies (addictions and disorders) have finally landed me in that constant zen-like state I so desperately craved. Or maybe I’m in serious denial. Or maybe this is a perfectly acceptable way to feel: Not feeling. I don’t know.

I used to joke with Josh all the time that I could take or leave the band. I was very “whatever” about it. Perhaps the word is: Flippant. It would enrage him. Makes sense seeing as he was the guy who did literally all of the behind the scenes work for the band, in addition to being one hell of a writer. If I remember correctly (and don’t believe a word of anything I try to recall from memory) this mentality continued through at least the first two MCS records, if not the third. Somewhere around 2010 I finally started to refer to myself as a Musician on those entrance and exit cards while traveling abroad, instead of: “Failed Filmmaker.”

I love writing songs. Even more than that I love telling stories. Even more than that I love having an idea, discovering where it starts and ends, and then figuring out how to string it all together. Often times the story shifts on you and refuses to go where you want it to. That’s when you really have to get creative. But it all takes time. Time alone. Alone in a room. A place of your design. Alone with your thoughts and anti-thoughts. Alone in silence and song. It’s almost meditative for me. I listen to the same parts of the demo over and over and over… And I just throw shit at the wall until something sticks (figuratively). But I love this time alone, being frustrated and unable to figure it out… Until eventually I do.

Apologies if this is fragmented. My mind feels fragmented. I feel at any given minute I might explode into a million little pieces. But I know that’s not going to happen. I think it is just me being aware of my anxieties and acknowledging them and then quickly moving on.

What is the point of this? I am not absolutely certain. But I think it starts with me vomiting out all my current thoughts and not-thoughts for any of you who dig reading the thoughts or not-thoughts of someone like me. I’m trying to get better at spontaneity and imperfection. So I’m not going to rewrite this. I’m just going to let it all spill out.

Performing on stage has never been a fully enjoyable experience for me. I’m too in my head to enjoy it like most people claim to. I never seem to have enough of a voice to sing the way I wish I could, and I cannot seem to remember guitar parts or words to my own songs if I go more than a week without playing them. I’m constantly shifting the way I do things while I’m doing them, based on what just happened or didn’t just happen on the last verse, chorus, song, etc… I really wish I could just play and sing without having to do crazy math equations in my head, and just look into the audience and make connections with people in the moment. But instead I am made up of equal parts fear and anxiety, masquerading as someone who is 100% chill and appears to have it totally together.

As I reread everything I’ve just written, I think to myself, “this guys sucks.” I don’t mean to come off as an ungrateful prick who is complaining about getting to play music for nearly 15 years FOR A LIVING. I mean just the opposite of that. And I’ll try to get to it now.

It’s no secret I don’t have the greatest image of myself (I mean, jesus, just listen to the words of any of our songs.) And I have no idea why that is. My parents were wonderful. I had a great childhood. High school both sucked and didn’t suck, but for the most part I have NOTHING to complain about. Yet, somehow I felt broken. And for a while that really messed me up. I thought there was something wrong with me and it sort of fed into this cycle of self-defeating behavior. Alcohol seemed to work for a while. It worked through the writing of the first album for sure. I continued to struggle with both alcohol and myself for two to three more records.

Eventually I accepted EVERYTHING sometime around 2011. Things were very dark though. I was obsessed with death and felt like I wasn’t in my body. That probably sounds weird. What I mean is, I felt as though I were floating through life, almost watching my life through my eyes as though it were someone else’s, like a film or something. Also, it felt like the colors of the world were brighter and each breath I took contained more oxygen than normal. It’s hard to explain… And now I kind of wished I hadn’t tried to. I sound like a lunatic.

It wasn’t until we started writing and recording Panic Stations that I finally found I could revisit old feelings and scenes from my life without being too affected by them. I had been working at this thing (Sobriety, Living in the moment, Self-love, Not being an asshole, etc…) for years and it was finally paying off. I had become an almost complete person. Hell, ten years ago I was playing a show in Scotland and messed up and started crying on stage. CRYING. In the middle of the set. The last few years I started screwing up left and right and was able to finally shake it off and start over (mentally) from whatever moment the screw up occurred.

I know this kind of contradicts something I wrote a few paragraphs back, but it doesn’t. Trust me. I’m about to get to the good stuff. And perhaps the point of all this.

I am most comfortable when I am alone, or with my family; my wife, my kid, my siblings, my parents, or one or two friends at a time MAXIMUM. Taken out of that, I find it hard to be completely authentic. I get too worried, anxious, nervous, fearful, etc… I know that I can play guitar. I know that I can sing. I know that I can hold a conversation. I just wish I were better at all of the above than I actually am. And that’s its own sad kind of constant.

A few years ago I started paying attention to the internet. Twitter, Facebook, emails, etc… I started reading and responding to messages form people who dug the music I was making. It was LIFE CHANGING. Aside from finally being able to communicate with others and hear their stories (post shows I would always be silent in order to preserve the voice I was constantly losing), I was actually learning a lot about myself through their interpretations of my music. Does that make any sense?

It had never occurred to me that I might be bipolar or have panic attacks. I thought several days literally laying on the floor unable to move after several days of incredible creative outbursts was just normal. Or that it was a fear of heights that caused my heart to palpitate and my hands to sweat before every flight, and that several glasses of scotch was the only cure.

I have not been diagnosed with anything by any doctors, and by the time I started reading these messages I had already worked through most of my issues by sheer force of will. Which either means I am a fucking superhero, or my problems were not that big to begin with. Or perhaps, and more likely, things fell somewhere between these two extremes.

More than anything, the last few years have been full of wonderful correspondences with incredible humans all over the world. I’ve read stories about the fucked up things that have happened to you, listened to your bands, declined your wedding invites, recorded awkward messages for your sisters and brothers, given terrible advice, given not-so-terrible advice, advised you not to listen to just one person’s advice (which in itself is one wicked conundrum), but most of all I’ve healed a part of me I forgot was broken.

Being alone all the time is great, but it is important to come up for air every now and again. And I’m not advocating that you need to go outside and run around. Hell no. The sun is for suckers. I’m just saying that it’s good for the soul to just listen to people. Let them tell you about themselves. Let them ask you questions. Let yourself respond to them as honestly as you can in the moment. Be there for a complete stranger.

You’ll have no idea how much our conversations have meant to me over the years. I hope that they don’t stop coming. I apologize for the drought in responses in both actual mail and electronic mail. I aim to start responding to all later this week. You see, I was anticipating a mental breakdown…

Which brings me back to Doe. A deer? A female deer.

The truth is, I’ve been bursting into tears spontaneously out of nowhere. No reason. And no feelings attached to it that I’m aware of. I’ll be mowing the lawn or seal-coating the driveway or emptying out the dishwasher and suddenly I’ll just start crying. IT’S FUCKING WEIRD. I’m comfortable enough with myself to just let it happen, but I am bummed that I don’t have any feelings associated with it. Any psychiatrists out there? Just kidding (but not really).

Did I mention I somehow graduated from high school without ever having learned how to write a proper paper? Can I file this post under poetry? Or claim artistic license or shenanigans? How exactly does shenanigans work? (Rhetorical).

My best attempt at psychoanalysis is this:

I’ve created unattainable goals for myself as a performer and a human which, without fail, I always fall short of. This allows me to focus on my shortcomings (and how to overcome them) rather than dealing with having any real feelings about things, one way or the other.

Maybe now the non-feeling feelings are all coming up. After a lifetime of muscling my way through things, now not having things to muscle through, I’m left to deal with the feelings I’ve refused to have to begin with.

Or maybe it’s more simple than that.

Maybe I’m strangely mourning the loss of identity. For what feels like my entire life I’ve been identified one way, as “that guy with the hair who…” And now that’s gone and I need to find a new identity. But it’s not really gone. And I don’t care to find a new identity. I’m totally fine being known as “that guy with the hair who…”

But things are different now. And the weight of that is everywhere.

In summation, I just want to thank you for digging the tunes that we made, and for coming out to shows, and for sharing your stories with me. Despite all of my overthinkingness, I have had an incredible ride. You have helped define me as a human on planet earth and I will be forever grateful for that.

Hopefully I will see you again someday, further down the river, and we can exchange tales of this and that, and learn a little something new about ourselves in the process.

Much love.

-Justin.

the father of the pride.

bleach || isshin-centric, ichigo/orihime || 1400 words || pg—13

of men and boys, because there are fewer bonds stronger than the one between father and son, even in the Kurosaki family.

how do you know.

What is it like to be in love?

Isshin looks up from his newspaper. The question startles him and he’d almost believe he’d imagined the question except that Ichigo is determinedly avoiding his gaze, studying his fingernails with such focus, that he knows he hasn’t.

What?

Ichigo clears his throat. Y’know, how do you know when you’re in love? How can you tell?

Are you in love, Ichigo? Isshin asks slowly. He hesitates, does not want to scare his son away from this conversation because it is important, obviously important because Ichigo is asking him and he never asks him anything if he can help it.

I don’t know. That’s why I’m asking you.

Isshin puts down his newspaper and rests his chin on his hands. When I met your mother, I just… knew.

But how? Ichigo’s tone is almost impatient, but Isshin knows he is not so much impatient as he is uncomfortable, because he is the loony dad who never says anything serious because he never takes anything seriously. Except he does, because his kids are Masaki’s kids and if there is anything he is going to look after in this life, it is their kids.

He casts his mind back to a show on television the night before and decides that their explanation makes sense. All the songs make sense.

… What the hell is that supposed to mean?

Love songs. All the love songs you’ve heard your whole life, you finally understand what they’re talking about. The good times, the bad times, even the phrase, ‘I love you’ means something different once you’ve been in love.

Ichigo scratches his nose. That, he starts, is the type of stupidly vague thing I expected you to say, and he stands, ready to leave and Isshin knows he cannot let him because if he fails here, Ichigo will never come to him for anything again and Masaki will never forgive him.

Ichigo. Wait. His son pauses so he continues. Look, love is different for everybody but the love song thing? To me, I think that makes sense almost universally, but if you want to know how I felt about your mother, I’ll tell you, but it’s all the clichés you’ve heard because love is a bit cliché. Ichigo turns his head slightly in his direction and Isshin smiles. You think she’s the most beautiful woman in the world, and even though people will tell you someone else is better looking, you can’t see it…

What if you’re already with the most beautiful woman? Ichigo interrupts and Isshin smirks at how telling this one statement is.

Well, then you are a lucky man.

 

crushworthy.

Her reputation might have preceded her but it still didn’t do her justice because Ichigo might’ve been right in thinking he was in love with the most beautiful woman in the world. A small part of him (alright, maybe not that small) is reminded of Masaki, and maybe that is why he sees so much sparkle in her eyes and colour in her cheeks and brightness in her smile. But he keeps this to himself.

He doesn’t want his son to realise he might have a bit of an Oedipus complex.

 

unwritten law.

We have to work together, son, Isshin whispers to Ichigo one night.

Dad, too close! Get away! Ichigo pushes him away forcefully but Isshin resists, determined to get his son on his side for this one project, perhaps the only one they will work on together in their entire lives.

Ichigo! One day, Yuzu and Karin are going to bring home… boys. Ichigo stops pushing him.

So?

 

So? We will only get one opportunity to scare away their suitors!

 

… Aaaaand we want to do this why?

Isshin punches some sense into Ichigo, both literally and figuratively. It is a rule, Ichigo, that the men of the house intimidate potential mates to ensure they are suitable for the precious female offspring. I didn’t realise you were so stupid that you didn’t know this!

Did you have to say it like that? And it is so not a rule.

 

Please! Just because Orihime didn’t have anyone to defend her doesn’t mean that it’s not a rule! It doesn’t mean that Yuzu and Karin should suffer! Isshin stops at the expression on Ichigo’s face. What?

Actually, Ichigo says thoughtfully, Orihime’s brother turned into a Hollow and tried to kill me…

See? Isshin gloats. Now, my son, what are we going to do?

 

the only possible answer.

So, Ichigo says out of the blue and then stops just as suddenly.

So? Isshin counters.

I, uh, I asked Orihime to marry me last night, Ichigo murmurs, looking down at his fingernails in a nervous habit and Isshin smiles.

That’s nice. Isshin says, looking away for the sake of his son’s modesty. What did she say? Isshin watches Ichigo from under hooded eyes as the corners of Ichigo’s mouth twitch upwards.

She said yes.

Isshin smirks. Of course she did.

 

she walks in beauty.

She doesn’t have a male relative to walk her down the aisle so Isshin volunteers.

She’s part of the family, his family, after all.

 

extra, extra.

It is a few weeks after they come back from their honeymoon that Ichigo visits his father, the first time they’ve met up since the wedding.

How was the honeymoon, Ichigo? Isshin asks around his mouthful of steak. Did you both have lots of sex? It is a sign of how much Ichigo has really grown up that he doesn’t stammer or blush or spit out his food at the question. Instead, he smirks and shrugs, as if to say, well, that is point of the honeymoon.

That’s not really what I came here to talk to you about. I have some news and I wanted you to be one of the first people to hear it. Isshin swallows his mouthful and leans forward eagerly.

Orihime’s pregnant, Ichigo says and he cannot keep the wide grin from splitting his face or spilling into his voice and his enthusiasm is infectious because Isshin’s grin soon mirrors his son’s and he is hugging him in congratulations.

Sometimes he thinks that things can’t get any better and then life throws him an amazing curveball.

 

i do not love you except because i love you.

He tiptoes softly into the hospital room, not wanting to wake the new parents or the baby. His newborn grandson.

I’m a grandpa, he thinks, feeling overwhelmed with emotion. The sensation does not diminish as he leans over the crib to see his grandson for the first time. If anything, it grows and grows until it feels like he is being punched in the gut and someone is squeezing his heart, all at the same time.

It is the most wonderful feeling in the world.

He remembers feeling a similar sensation when Ichigo was born, when he first became a father, but that was years ago now, many years ago, and the memory of the emotion had dulled. He glances over to his now-grown son and his gorgeous wife, slumbering peacefully on the tiny hospital bed. He cannot hold back his smile at the thought of this beautiful new family. Ichigo was going to be a brilliant father, Orihime a perfect mother, and he would happily take on the role of the eccentric grandparent.

The only grandparent.

The baby continues to sleep. Isshin brushes his thumb tenderly over his forehead. His grandson opens his eyes, eyes a deep brown like his father’s, and Isshin falls in love all over again.

Don’t worry, he whispers, the women will fall over themselves for you. It worked for me and it worked for your father. Trust in the power of Kurosaki charm.

His grandson watches him, he doesn’t cry or even frown, and Isshin relishes this silence, rejoices in the forming of this bond between two generations of Kurosaki men.

He continues to gently play with his grandson’s orange hair while his parents sleep.

 

because i don’t know.

How do you know when you’re in love?

Isshin looks up from his newspaper. The question startles him and he’d almost believe he’d imagined the question except that Shinichi is determinedly avoiding his gaze, studying his fingernails with such focus, that he knows he hasn’t.

What?

Shinichi clears his throat. Y’know, how do you know when you’re in love? How can you tell?

Isn’t this something you should be talking to your father about, Shin? Isshin puts down his newspaper as Shinichi awkwardly shifts in his seat.

I did, but he told me to ask you.

And Isshin smiles.

Things I learned during my first year of medical school

I cannot believe I’ve finished my first year of medical school already! Wow! 

Warning: long Parks and Rec gif-filled post ahead (90% of these are cheesy but I am pizza levels of cheesy when I’m reflecting):

Originally posted by gifsboom

1. Do your thing

The first semester of med school was a weird time of looking and seeing what other people were doing to study and wondering if I needed to do that too. 

I wondered, should I get a bunch of colored highlighters? Make a million flashcards? Am I behind because I haven’t studied that lecture yet? Should I stream instead of go to class because that’s what other people are doing?

Originally posted by yourreactiongifs

My advice? Try new things out but once you figure out what works for you, don’t be afraid to stick to it. Some people found out that they study best in groups. I found out I study best by myself. I don’t like highlighting but I do like writing down things I need to know in a spiral so I can review/remember them better. I also like doing as many practice questions as I can get my hands on. I like going to class and taking notes on my computer. 

I didn’t know any of that until I got here. And that’s okay. But don’t stress about what other people are doing - you’ll find what works for you. 

2. Don’t try to study 24/7 

Seriously. Don’t. It’s not worth it. You’ll burn out and realize you could have been more relaxed and focused if you took a break. I try to take a couple minutes of break every hour and a bigger break every few hours whenever I’m studying. I also try to take at least one day off per weekend and do something fun (even if it’s small). I also know I study best during the day so I usually take the evenings off as well unless it’s like crunch time. 

Originally posted by rachgrub

3. Investing in dress clothes is a good idea

Inevitably, you’ll forget that you have yet another clinical skills class that requires white coat attire (aka business casual) and only remember last minute, without time to do laundry. It’s way less stressful if you have a few possible outfits. Even easier? If you wear dresses, get some nice professional dresses. Nothing better than only picking a single thing out of your closet to wear! Also, along with that, make sure you have dress shoes that fit and are comfortable. I learned that I need to break in new flats sometimes before I wear them or I will get really bad blisters. 

Originally posted by impeterperez

4. Laughter is the best medicine

As cliche as it sounds, I could not have gotten through this year without laughing. Laughing with new friends, laughing at ridiculous situations, laughing at silly gifs posted in our med school’s FB group specifically created for that purpose (it’s the best, highly recommend. Our class has 3 facebook groups - one for class announcements/club things, one for study materials, and one for laughing. The silly one was started by an MS2 (now MS3 I suppose!)). Laughing is seriously therapeutic for stress. Also some of my classmates just happen to be hysterically funny. Also A+ to tumblr for keeping me giggling. Also, Broad City (put it on your list of shows to watch!) 

Originally posted by iamjustbeth

5. The days are long but the weeks/months are short

I still cannot believe it is May and I’m already done. I’m grateful that I’ve been able to reflect on my experiences on my tumblr so I can remember them (because sometimes it feels like my memories are getting squeezed out to make room for new knowledge). Journaling here allowed me to process this year in a way that I wouldn’t have otherwise. I would highly recommend it to anyone about to start school (of any kind!). 

Originally posted by transitionneededplease

6. Make new friends but keep the old

Yes, I am quoting a Girl Scouts song. Because it’s true. I am so very thankful for the technology that has allowed me to (try to) keep up with my college friends. Life is busy for all of us but it’s always nice to chat with old friends (and hang out, location permitting!) Also my med school class is filled with the most amazing people and it’s been so fun getting to know them :) I love my girls so much, they truly are my ride or dies. Med school is quite a bonding experience.

Originally posted by leslieandannforever

7. You’ll do things you never imagined you could

For me, that was anatomy and clinical skills. I was a bit nervous about dissecting and the whole experience but I was pleasantly surprised. It was not as weird as I thought it would be. In clinical skills, I was terrifyingly nervous about standardized patients and being filmed and getting feedback and learning how to do all the exams. We all got through it and now I feel much more comfortable. There are still hard days (like a couple of weeks ago) but I am not as nervous. I also learned how to do the male GU exam and it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be. 

Originally posted by island-delver-go

 I also can’t believe that I went from knowing nothing to taking a history and doing a physical on a real patient all by myself AND presenting them to my preceptor. I still have a ton to learn and say stupid stuff sometimes but it feels like I’m on the right track. 

Originally posted by welcometoyouredoom

8. While sometimes first year feels like this:

Originally posted by iheart3j5

Originally posted by yourreactiongifs

Originally posted by adultum


Originally posted by superkevinthellama


Originally posted by superkevinthellama

You’ll have moments where you feel like


Originally posted by madpupper

And one last bonus lesson:

Originally posted by penguins-ruletheworld

Can that be the medblr motto? Also shoutout to medblr for being such an amazing and supportive community. Could not have gotten through this year without y’all!!!! 

Congratulations to all the other first years who are finishing up school or already done :) And welcome medblr class of 2020!!! So excited for y’all. 

Seventh Time's a Charm

Hiiii, again! It’s been a while since I posted a story and this has been kicking around my documents since before 30 Days because I wasn’t sure whether or not I wanted to post this one but alas, here it is.

w/c: 8k

Harry’s sees a certain blond boy six times over the course of his life and the blond boy gets away every single time. And then Harry sees him a seventh time.

X

[One]

When Harry is nine years old his parents take him and his sister, Gemma, to Ireland for a small family vacation over the summer holidays. It’s the first time Harry’s ever been outside of England and he’s nervous but he’s also really excited because even though it’s with his parents, it’s kind of like an adventure. Right? Plus his friends all think it’s really cool that he gets to go to Ireland, where the Leprechauns are.

His parents rent a little cottage near Mullingar, where everything is big and green – where the fields roll on for miles and miles and you can see exactly where the land meets the sky in the horizon. He’s taken with Ireland the moment they step foot on the Irish ground and he’s even more taken by the thick, Irish accents and the friendliness of the small town and Harry contemplates asking his mum if they can just stay here.

Harry gets lost on the fourth day in Ireland because he does exactly what his mum always tells him not to do when they go into town. He wanders off. He wanders and he wanders and he explores and then all of a sudden he’s lost. He doesn’t know where he is or how he got there because, quite honestly, he wasn’t really paying attention to his surroundings – which is something he does sometimes. Not paying attention. His mum tells him he can’t let himself get caught up in his head sometimes or he’ll get lost. And here he is: lost.

The outside of the shops in town all look the same except for the names, of course, but the names don’t mean anything to him. There aren’t a lot of people around but there’s enough and he could ask them for help except Harry’s always been kind of shy – especially around people he doesn’t know. He’s about five seconds away from bursting into tears in the middle of the sidewalk when he hears a small, albeit loud, voice behind him.

He whirls around to see a boy, roughly his age only smaller, with fluffy brown hair and bright blue eyes and a crooked, white smile. Harry stares at him for a moment, too taken aback by the boy’s prettiness – which is weird, because boys aren’t supposed to be pretty.

The boy asks him if he’s lost and all Harry can muster up is a weak “yes.”

“Y’ aren’t from around ‘ere, then, are ya?”

Harry shakes his head and swallows down the sob in his throat as he forces back tears. “‘m from England.”

“Ah. Whereabouts?”

“Cheshire.”

“Small town, yeah? Not all that different from here then.”

“I guess not, no.”

“Do you know which way you came from?”

Harry shakes his head, because he doesn’t have a clue – and even if he did, he doesn’t think he’d even remember now.

“What’s the last thing you remember about where you were?”

Harry closes his eyes and thinks hard to remember. “My sister told my mum she wanted to go into a craft store.”

“Ah! Caroline’s Crafts!” the boy exclaims. “I know exactly where that is, I’ll show ya.”

And then Harry’s following the boy down the street and the boy’s going on and on about the craft store and how the owner makes all of her own crafts and such from scratch. Then the boy started talking about the music store next door and how it’s his favourite place in the world because the owner lets him play the instruments inside. And Harry isn’t lost anymore, because he’s beginning to recognize his surroundings and there’s something about this boy that makes him feel kind of safe – but he is lost in the sound of the boy’s voice.

“And here we are – Caroline’s Crafts!”

Harry barely has a second to register that they’re there, let alone to thank the boy for helping him, when his mum comes barreling out the front door of the shop all teary-eyed and sobbing, scolding him for wandering off “which is exactly what I told you not to do, Harry” and pulling him into her loving arms. And when Harry turns around to introduce his mum to the blue-eyed Irish boy, the boy’s gone. Vanished.

Harry can’t help but wonder, on the plane back to England three days later, if maybe he just imagined the boy.

X

[Two]

Harry loves football. Loves watching it on the telly with his step-dad, loves going to matches to cheer in the crowd, wins all of his fantasy football leagues with his friends. He’s only 12 but he knows everything there is to know and has a vast knowledge of the game from years upon years of watching every move. 

He cannot, however, play the game to save his life because he’s at that age now where his limbs are too long and lanky for the rest of his body. He’s clumsy and awkward and he spends more time lying on his back on the field when he does try to play than anything else. 

He’s a Manchester fan and Robin, his step-dad, is a Derby County fan and this is how he finds himself in Derby to watch a match between Derby and Manchester.

This is also how he finds himself staring across his section and into the next, gaze glued to a boy a couple rows down with bright (badly) dyed blond hair, wearing a Derby jersey. The boy is cheering incredibly loudly, bouncing around energetically – he’s making a complete fool of himself, but in a way that’s charming and has everyone around him laughing and watching him affectionately. 

Harry tries to ignore him, tries to focus on the game – Manchester is winning, obviously. He tries not to be distracted by the loud, blond-haired boy with a distinctly Irish accent. But there’s something about the boy – this stranger – that makes it hard to look away. 

And then the boy turns around to talk to someone standing behind him and, for the first time since Harry noticed him, Harry sees his face. And not only is his face fucking beautiful but he looks incredibly familiar. Harry gets the distinct feeling that he should recognize this boy, that he’s met the boy before. But it’s highly unlikely, isn’t it? First of all, they’re in Derby and, while he comes here often enough to watch games with Robin, he doesn’t actually know anyone here. Not to mention the fact that this boy is obviously Irish and the only person he knows of that’s Irish, is-

Harry blinks, choking on the sip of Coke he takes out of his paper cup. Robin claps him on the back once or twice but Harry’s gaze is wide and settled firmly on the blond-haired, blue-eyed boy in the section over. 

It can’t be, can it? There’s no way that this boy is the boy he met in Ireland. Because not only is the boy far away from home – although isn’t Harry, as well? – but the boy has blond hair and he most certainly didn’t have blond hair in Ireland. He reminds himself, then, that this boy’s hair is very clearly (badly) dyed and that, yeah, the boy from Ireland could’ve very-well dyed his hair. Right?

The blond boy laughs at something the man behind him says, squeezing his eyes shut, tossing his head back and opening his mouth in a wide O shape to let the sound out. And that’s when Harry knows that this boy is, in fact, the boy from Ireland because that laugh – his laugh – is loud and unique. And Harry definitely recognizes that laugh.

A whistle signifies the end of the game – Manchester has won, obviously, but Harry doesn’t even care about that. Once everyone has finished cheering and hollering and once they’ve all started to leave, all Harry cares about is getting to the blue-eyed boy before he disappears. He bolts, calling back to Robin that he’ll meet the man at the car as he weaves his slim, lanky body between crowds of people, up the stairs and through the closest gate. He searches for the bright blond head when he gets to the lobby.

He comes up empty because the boy has already disappeared.

X

[Three]

Harry’s a mixture of nerves, anxiety and excitement by the time his class lands in Ireland. He’s on a school trip with his 10th year class – to Dublin of all places. And he knows it’s silly, because Blue Eyes lives near Mullingar, not Dublin, but he’s nervous about running into the blond-haired Irish boy. It’s silly because the boy probably won’t even remember him – because why would the boy remember or recognize him? 

And besides, maybe Harry won’t even be able to recognize Blue Eyes. Maybe Niall has purple or pink hair now. (And, actually, when Harry thinks about it, maybe Blue Eyes with purple hair wouldn’t be all that bad…)

His class has visited a few of Dublin popular sights – the Dublin Castle being Harry’s favourite – and by the end of their third day there Harry thinks he’s even more in love with Ireland now than he was when he was nine. 

The professor tells them they’re all allowed to go off for dinner at any restaurant or pub along the main road as long as they’re back at the hotel for 8 o’clock. This means they have three hours to eat and/or explore the city on their own.

Harry and his best friend Louis break apart from the rest of their class, while the majority of them decide to stick together. He’s jittery and he’s nervous and he really has no idea why and Louis seems to let it be, so neither one of them talk about it. Harry finds a little pub he’d seen earlier – and had read was really very good – and he’s just about to drag Louis across the street when he catches a flash of blond hair in peripherals. He freezes, thinks it’s ridiculous how jumpy and silly he’s being because there’s no way that the blond hair belongs to Blue Eyes. But then he turns and his gaze follows the sound of a guitar strum to a boy standing in the middle of a circle of loads of people – people that have gathered to hear him play. And, sure enough, the blond hair does belong to Blue Eyes because Blue Eyes is standing right there, strumming a guitar and tapping his foot to the melody he’s created on the street.

And for the second time, Harry finds himself lost in Ireland. 

Blue Eyes is playing the beginning of a Michael Bublé song and then – then he starts to sing. And Harry is mesmerized, completely taken with this blond-haired boy – whose hair looks much, much better now as it’s faded a bit and grown out to reveal brown roots. He’s taken by the ease in which the boy is playing the guitar and the sound of the boy’s voice because, good Lord, his voice is incredible. 

“Harry!”

Harry finally snaps out of his trance to glance sideways at his best friend, who’s looking at him all confused and concerned. “What?”

“What? What do you mean ‘what?’ I thought we were going to eat.”

Harry blinks, glancing from Louis to the pub and then to Blue Eyes before he looks back at Louis. “I know him.”

“What?”

“The boy with the guitar, I know him.”

Louis continues to look confused. “You – how could you know him? Have you hit your head or something? You’ve been acting weird since we got here-“

“Okay, I don’t know him know him, but I’ve met him before,” Harry admits.

"Okay, I’ll bite. How? When?”

“My parents and I came to Mullingar when I was nine and I got lost when we went to town and Blue Eyes helped me find my mum.”

“Blue Eyes?”

Harry blushes, looking down at the ground between them. “I – it’s what I call him in my head.”

“In your – Harry-”

“Anyway, I saw him again a few years ago at a Derby match when I went with Robin – he was in the stands.”

“Okay. Did he recognize you?”

“He didn’t – he didn’t see me.”

“So you haven’t talked him since you were nine?”

“Well, no-”

“How long did you talk to him when you were nine?”

“N-not long-”

“Then how do you even know this is him?”

“Because I know, okay? I know it’s him.”

“What’s so special about him?”

“I don’t – I don’t know,” Harry admits. “I just want to talk to him again.”

Louis frowns. “Well, it’s kind of too late,” he sighs, scratching the back of his neck sheepishly. “He’s gone.”

Harry whirls back around and sure enough Blue Eyes – along with his guitar and his circle of fans – is gone. Vanished. Disappeared.

Again.

“Sorry, Harry,” Louis whispers, resting a hand on his back.

Harry shakes his head, disappointed. “Let’s just go eat.”

X

[Four]

Harry has a summer job when he’s 16 at a small bakery in Holmes Chapel. Most of his friends think it’s lame because not only will he be working all summer but he works with a bunch of old ladies. Harry, however, couldn’t be more in love with his job. It’s nothing special, really, except the old ladies are nice and he gets to bake all kinds of sweets all day and sometimes he gets to eat the sweets that don’t sell. And he gets paid. It’s like winning the lottery, really.

He’s four hours into his sixth shift in a row when the bell above the door jingles and Harry straightens himself out from where he was leaning on the counter over a Sudoku puzzle book. It’s been at least 45 minutes since someone’s come in and, quite frankly, Harry’s glad for it. He looks up and his gaze lands on a blond-haired, fair-skinned boy clad in a casual, blue button down shirt, baggy blue jeans and white converse shoes. 

Harry’s breath catches in his throat as he stares, rather obviously, at the boy in front of him – the boy with soft, fluffy blond hair kind of sticking out all over the place and pale skin and blue eyes. Blue Eyes. Blue Eyes is standing right in front of him, in his bakery, in Holmes Chapel of all the places in the world. 

It doesn’t register that there’s another boy with him until that boy – who’s also Irish, Harry notes – speaks. Harry’s heart sinks in his chest when Blue Eyes drags the other, dark-haired boy towards the counter. 

“‘ey, mate,” Blue Eyes greets him, looking at him briefly before his eyes begin to scan the display case full of cakes, cupcakes, muffins, etc. 

“H-hi,” Harry stutters, cursing himself inwardly for being so nervous. Why is he nervous?

“Can I just get a chocolate chip muffin?” the other boy asks.

“Boring,” Blue Eyes snickers, gaze still glued to the sweets case.

“Not everyone turns choosing a treat into emotional turmoil like you,” the other boy shoots back, rolling his eyes playfully at Blue Eyes before he turns his attention to Harry. “Sorry, he might be a while.”

Harry nods mutely – though he wants nothing more than to tell Blue Eyes to take as long as he would like – as he trades one chocolate chip muffin for the other boy’s loose change. As the other boy turns away to wander around the store, Harry turns his gaze to the blond-haired boy staring into the treats case like a kid in a candy store. The boy really is beautiful, he thinks. Like, flawless. Except he’s really not that flawless because he’s a teenage boy so he has some spots on his face, but Harry still finds him perfect.

“Niall, mate, hurry up,” the other boy calls out to him from near the door. “Yer dad’s waiting outside.”

“I can’t decide,” Niall groans.

The other boy rolls his eyes. “How about we ask this nice looking boy behind the counter,” he says, walking back towards the counter. He looks at Harry – or more specifically at Harry’s name tag – before turning back to Blue Eyes, who he now knows is named Niall. Niall. “So, Harry, what dessert would you recommend for my friend Niall, here? Seeing as you work here, yeah.”

Niall looks at him, hands on his hips.

Harry blinks, shifting uncomfortably from foot to foot. “Um, well, I really like the special strawberry shortcake cupcake. They’re new and-“

“Great, he’ll take one!”

“Two, actually,” Niall says. “One for me dad.”

“Your dad said he isn’t hungry-”

“That was 10 minutes ago, Sean. And if he still isn’t hungry then I guess I could just eat the second one.”

A small giggle escapes Harry’s lips and he claps a hand over his mouth as he goes to fetch two cupcakes. “Sorry, I-sorry,” he murmurs, places both cupcakes into two little boxes.

“No worries, he likes to make cute boys giggle,” Sean snickers, ducking to avoid Niall’s hands, which shoot out to slap repeatedly at Sean’s head.

“Ignore him, he talks a lot of shit sometimes,” Niall says, handing a couple bills to Harry. 

Harry nods, swallowing hard around the lump in his throat as he tries to hide his disappointment. He takes Niall’s money and then gives him back change – and then, just like that, Niall thanks him and both he and Sean are leaving. And Harry can do nothing but watch Niall walk away.

X

[Five]

Eight months later, for Harry’s 17th birthday, Louis gets him two tickets – “one of them is obviously for me, right Harold?” – to see Harry’s recent favourite singer, an new up-and-coming lad by the name of Ed Sheeran. The concert is in London and his mum only allows the boys to go alone just as long Harry contacts her whenever they arrive and/or depart from certain places. 

Harry’s beyond excited for this concert, albeit a little bit nervous as well because he really, really hopes the bloke sounds just as good live as he does in his EP. Louis is sure he will, but Harry doesn’t always put that much stock into what the Doncaster native has to say. 

The concert is at a small venue in London – the place is larger than your basic pub but a hell of a lot smaller than the O2 arena. Ed Sheeran isn’t that well known yet, so this is one of those promotional concerts meant to boost his popularity. (Harry’s kind of torn between wanting him to have loads of success and wanting to keep him for himself.)

They get to the venue an hour early and the lineup is already really, really long. Harry moans and groans about the amount of people in front of them, despite the fact that Louis keeps reminding him that they have tickets and that they will obviously be getting in. And as they’re waiting in line, Harry being less patient and more jittery than he should be, he swears he sees a head of short blond hair sneak in the back entrance with some security personnel – and he has to remind himself that this is London and that there are probably thousands of boys with dyed-blond tips and white converse shoes. 

Once they get inside the building, Harry latches onto Louis’ arm and drags him through throngs of people, past the long bar at the side of the wide room to get as close to the stage as possible. He can’t drink in public, yet, but Louis can and he’s determined to get himself – and Harry, if he can manage it – a drink. And maybe a little drunk. Harry decides to stay put as Louis ventures off because he isn’t willing to lose his spot for a drink they most definitely won’t give him if he goes with Louis. Plus, he doesn’t really fancy weaving his tall, lanky body through crowds because people are rude and don’t realize that Harry is clumsy and fragile.

The concert has yet to start and Louis has yet to come back and just as Harry’s turning around to look towards the bar for his friend, his gaze settles on the blond-haired boy he saw entering the back door. He’s wearing an Ed Sheeran sweatshirt, dark blue jeans and bright, white supras. And sure enough, the boy is exactly who Harry had thought it was – and hoped it was and hoped it wasn’t. Niall. His breath catches in his throat and his heartbeat picks up speed in his chest and his palms begin to sweat nervously as the boy maneuvers himself and his friend, a tall boy with shaggy brown hair and a puppy dog face, through the crowd. 

Harry turns back around, then, eyes wide in shock because what the hell? 

A force pushes against Harry’s back, throwing him forward. A muttered “oof” escapes his lips as he falls straight to the ground because gravity always has a way of pulling him down. 

The voice that apologizes behind him is distinctly Irish and Harry knows exactly who it belongs to. “Shit, I’m so sorry!” And then hands are reaching down to him to pull him back to his feet and Harry’s grateful but also kind of embarrassed. “I’m sorry, my friend’s an idiot. You’re an idiot, Liam.”

Harry turns around to face the boy and his friend to find Niall staring at him apologetically. “It’s okay, I’m alright,” Harry assures him.

Something flashes in Niall’s ocean eyes, something like recognition and then confusion. “Do – do I know you?”

Harry blinks. “Um-“

“I just – you look familiar, but I’m not even from around here. Which is weird, right? Never mind, you probably just have one of those faces, yeah? The ones that look like someone you know, but – you know what, forget I said anything. I’m just gonna-”

“The bakery in Holmes Chapel,” Harry says just as Niall’s turning away to leave. His heart is racing, beating wildly in his ears as he waits for Niall’s reaction. 

Niall whirls back around, eyes wide and twinkling. “The strawberry shortcake cupcake!” he exclaims. “To this day it’s still the best damn cupcake I’ve ever had by the way.”

Harry laughs. “Told you they were good.”

Liam, Niall’s friend, pats Niall on the back. “I’m gonna leave you two to flirt and go find my girlfriend. I’ll catch up with ya later.”

Niall rolls his eyes as Liam walks away. “His girlfriend, Danielle, is a dancer and she has a tendency to wander off sometimes and talk to random people.”

Harry nods, shoving his hands into his pockets awkwardly because he doesn’t want to talk about Liam. He wants to talk about Niall and why Niall’s at an Ed Sheeran concert in London and how the hell he has an Ed Sheeran sweatshirt. “Where’d you get that jumper?”

Niall grins. “I know a guy who knows a friend of his so I met Ed a few weeks ago and he gave it t’ me. I think there’s a bunch back stage, limited quantity for people with backstage passes and that. I reckon I can get you backstage if ya want?”

“You have backstage passes?” Harry wonders, awestruck. The Ed Sheeran fangirl in him is coming out, he notes.

“No,” he says simply. He grabs the fabric of Harry’s long-sleeve shirt to drag him away.

“Wait, my friends gone to get drinks and-” Harry cuts himself off when he sees Louis across the room at the bar talking to a pretty brunette with long, curly hair and great legs. He smirks, then, rolling his eyes because of course Louis is chatting up a girl at the bar and has, simultaneously, forgotten all about Harry. “Never mind.”

Harry lets Niall lead him through throngs of people – glad for Niall’s slightly firmer, buffer shoulders because it makes Harry seem less awkward. Niall leads him all the way to the side of the stage, exchanges a few words with a security guard, and then pulls him behind the curtain.

Ten minutes later Harry’s having a laugh with Niall and Ed Sheeran and the latter gives him a jumper and a t-shirt and takes a Polaroid picture of the three of them and then signs it for him. Harry’s on cloud nine, hanging out with Niall backstage with Ed and his team of people. It’s not quite what he expected it to be like backstage, calm and chill and casual, but it’s better.

When Ed and his band hit the stage, Niall drags Harry to the side of the stage – a small VIP section meant for close friends and family – and it’s the greatest thing in the world. He gets a text message from Louis part way through the first song asking him where the hell he is and replies: VIP. Long story. Tell you later. And when Louis calls him – and calls him and calls him – because Louis is the most impatient person he knows, Harry ignores the buzzing in his pocket in favour of the buzzing in his ears, the music beating in his chest and Niall’s shoulder pressed firmly against his own.

Both of them are a giggly, blissful mess when the show ends and neither one of them are even slightly drunk – because they’re both underage – but they’re stumbling through the crowds and accidentally bumping into other people. And even though they aren’t drunk, Harry kind of feels drunk; drunk off of Ed Sheeran and concert and music and Niall

Harry has his phone in one hand, texting Louis to meet him outside, and his other hand is clasped tightly in Niall’s as the Irish boy leads him – and, at this point, Harry doesn’t even care where they’re going. They meet up with Liam and Danielle along the way towards the front door and seconds after they’re outside, standing in the street with other concert-goers, Harry surges forward, nearly pulling Niall towards the ground with him, as someone jumps on Harry’s back. But Niall’s grip on Harry’s hand is firm and he’s strong enough that he holds Harry upright – and Harry knows who it is the second Louis opens his mouth and yells at him for ignoring him and not getting him into the VIP section. To which Harry makes a comment about the pretty girl standing behind him, which results in a smug-looking Louis who introduces him to Eleanor and her friend Sally. He then introduces himself to Liam, Danielle and Niall and Harry adamantly ignores the way his cheeks burn up at Louis’ knowing smirk when he hears Niall’s name. 

They all decide to go to a cafe across the street for some cuppas and dessert and while Harry is glad to be spending any kind of time with Niall, who has since let go of Harry’s hand, but still remains close, he’s also kind of disappointment he hasn’t had a moment alone with Niall since the end of the concert. He wants to ask for Niall’s phone number but he doesn’t quite know how, because he’s never had to be the one to ask anyone before, and he most certainly doesn’t want to do it in front of anyone. So he waits and he waits and he waits for the right moment to ask, but nobody leaves them alone together. In fact, it’s quite the opposite as everyone is talking and exchanging stories – including Niall, who thinks Louis’ about the funniest person in the world.

And then Liam, Danielle and Niall are leaving because they have to find Danielle’s car so they can drive back to Liam’s place in Wolverhampton and Harry never gets the chance to ask Niall for his number. In fact, all Harry gets from Niall at all is an awkward goodbye.

X

[Six]

Harry hears about the party on his first day of class and has no intentions of going. He’s awkward when he doesn’t know anyone at parties, plus it’s the first week and he doesn’t want to step on anyone’s toes or make the wrong impression. Also, his sister may be coming down for a visit – because it’s only his third week in London, where he’s living in a small flat just off campus with a lad named Zayn and he’s already feeling homesick – so he’d much rather just stay in Friday and then get up bright and early to have breakfast with Gemma the next morning.

Zayn, however, has other plans. He wants to go to the party and he wants Harry to go with him because he’s shy and he’s awkward and he doesn’t want to go alone. Harry reminds him, more than once, that he’s also shy and awkward and Zayn says, “then we can be shy and awkward together.” And Harry doesn’t like making people beg, so when Zayn starts to plead with him Harry caves and texts Gemma to see if she can just come up next weekend instead.

The party is exactly how he expects it to be: loud and busy and messy. It’s like, what he imagines, the epitome of a university party. Music and dancing and alcohol and red cups and so many Uni kids. Harry thinks it’s kind of overwhelming, being in a house – off campus, no less – with this many people he doesn’t know and he’s about to tell Zayn he wants to leave when Zayn grasps the sleeve of Harry’s plaid button-down and yanks him further into the house. Zayn then introduces him to some kids from his art class, who pour them both drinks.

An hour and two red cups later, Harry’s wandering around the house talking to all kinds of different people. Zayn has since disappeared into the basement to smoke up some joints, which Harry isn’t all that interested in anyway, and Harry’s kind of just tipsy enough to not worry about being clumsy or awkward. He hears someone say something about a campfire outside and some blond-haired bloke with a guitar, so Harry follows a couple of boys and girls out the back door. 

And that’s when he sees him. Niall. Niall, wearing a pair of black trousers and a muscle shirt with the American flag printed on the front and a backwards SnapBack, little wings of his dyed-blond hair sticking out the sides and through the gap in the hat. He’s sitting on a lawn chair on the opposite side of the fire, guitar in his lap and a circle of a crowd gathered around him. He looks beautiful and perfect and he sounds so good singing and playing Wonderwall.

Harry watches him from the edge of the porch, fascinated and mesmerized. A thousand thoughts and questions are floating around in his head – like what he’s doing here, both at this party and in London in general – but the truth is he doesn’t really care. He doesn’t care what he’s doing here – thinks it’s probably obvious, like Niall’s obviously going to school – because once again Niall is here. Niall’s here, right in front of him and he’s well aware that this is the sixth time he’s seen this beautiful Irish boy. And maybe it’s weird – he kind of feels like a bit of a stalker, except technically Niall would be the stalker now – but maybe it’s fate too.

He doesn’t realized he’s moved closer to the fire – to Niall – until he’s right there, directly in front of him; until Niall lifts his gaze off the fire and his bright, blue eyes collide with Harry’s. It’s like everything slows down in that moment and Niall stops singing the last verse of the song as his fingers move slowly and fluently over the strings on the neck of the guitar. Niall grins, then, his lovely, pink lips reaching for his eyes as he tilts his head to the side quirkily. And Harry grins back, despite the way his breath catches in his throat and his heart kind of clenches in his chest.

That’s when Niall announces that this next song will be his last because he isn’t yet drunk enough and the second he begins to strum the first few cords, Harry knows exactly what song he’s going to sing. His heart skips a beat and the butterflies come alive in his stomach and he can’t help but mouth the words to Lego House while Niall sings them beautifully. 

The crowd disperses a few minutes later and Niall makes a beeline for Harry, telling him not to move and that he’ll go get them drinks. And Harry doesn’t move, because it’s like his feet are glued to grass next to the fire pit and he can’t move. Niall comes back less than a minute later and hands Harry a beer.

“If I didn’t know any better I’d think you were stalking me,” Niall comments jokingly. 

Harry smiles, taking a sip of the beer. “Says the Irish in London. Again.”

“What can I say, I love London.” And just like that they fall into an easy conversation full of banter and laughter. 

Harry learns that Niall is in his first year, obviously, of sound engineering. He’s been playing the guitar and singing since he was about 12 years old. He likes music genres of all kinds and not only does he make a hobby out of taking songs that are definitely not acoustic and turning them into acoustic songs, but he likes to write his own songs too. He likes football and rugby – likes all kinds of sports too, really, and tries to go to as many Derby games as he can. (And Harry remembers the time he saw Niall at that Derby/Manchester game but doesn’t say anything.) His favourite fast-food restaurant is Nandos, but his favourite to food to eat, like, ever is anything Asian. He learns that Niall’s favourite colour is green – and yes, he knows it’s ironic – and his favourite movie of all time is Grease and he’s only ever read one book from start to finish because he usually gets bored half way through.

Harry learns a lot about Niall in such a short time frame, more than he ever thought would ever be possible.

He also learns things about Niall that Niall doesn’t have to say. Like the fact that Niall is like literally sunshine; he radiates all kinds of heat and energy and light. Like the fact that Niall blushes and laughs and smiles easily and often. That Niall’s eyes kind of sparkle when he talks about something he truly loves – like music and football. That his birthday is next weekend and he’s really excited about it.

That Niall looks stunning in the dimming light of the fire that’s burning out. 

And then Niall says something that kind of catches him off guard. “I feel like we’ve met before.”

Harry blinks. “We have. I have the picture of us at Ed Sheeran’s concert as proof-“

“No, I mean, before that. Like, earlier,” Niall says, the alcohol causing his words to slur . 

“Oh,” Harry mutters and he isn’t sure if he should tell Niall that they have. 

“I just…I feel like I know you from somewhere else, like I’ve seen you somewhere else before. It’s like, like I can remember seeing your face – and that hair,” he adds quickly, tugging at one of Harry’s curly locks, “but I just don’t know where or when.”

Harry swallows around the lump in his throat as he stares back at Niall, who’s watching him intently. “We were nine – at least, I was nine. My family was visiting Mullingar and we went into town to do some shopping but I wandered off and got lost and then you-“

“I found you and took you back to the craft store!” Niall shouts enthusiastically, looking proud and triumphant for remembering. 

“Yeah,” Harry chuckles.

“Yeah, I remember now.”

“And then I saw you a few years later at a Derby match.”

“Which one?!”

“Derby versus Manchester. You had blond hair.”

“How did you recognize me?”

For the first time in his life, Harry’s glad for the fact that alcohol makes his cheeks red because when he blushes just now it isn’t any different from before. He doesn’t want to admit to Niall that he’d kind of memorized the soft, albeit childish curves of Niall’s face. “I just – I dunno, I just did,” he says instead. “And then I saw you again when I went back to Ireland for a class trip a couple years after that. You were playing the guitar on the street corner and-“

“That must have been just after my dad got it for me for Christmas,” Niall remembers. “I probably wasn’t even any good.”

“You were great.”

“So I was right then, you have been stalking me,” Niall smirks.

“Hey, you’re the one who’s wound up in my neck of the woods these last few times,” Harry points out.

Niall looks thoughtful for a moment. “Fair enough.”

Harry continues to watch Niall as Niall turns back and leans forward to look at the dying fire. He watches the light and shadows that the embers create on Niall’s already flushed face. Watches the way the light kind of reflects in Niall’s darkened blue eyes and dance in his blond tips. He’s never seen anyone or anything that makes him feel so…weightless and bubbly; never seen anyone so fucking beautiful.

"It’s kind of weird, innit?” Niall asks, craning his neck to look sideways at Harry. “That we’ve seen each other a few times in random places over the last 10 years and now we’re here.”

"Yeah, weird,” Harry murmurs, his gaze falling to Niall’s pink lips. He wonders what they feel like, taste like.

“It’s a bit like fate, ya think?” Niall whispers, leaning forward.

Harry blinks, his gaze snapping up to meet Niall’s heavy, dark, lustful eyes. “I, um-“

And then Niall’s lips are on his, soft and firm at the same time and Harry is stunned. Stunned because he wasn’t expecting this – not from Niall’s side anyway, at all. Stunned because Harry’s body feels like fire and fireworks explode behind his closed eyes as he finally kisses back. Niall deepens the kiss, cupping his hand around the back of Harry’s neck, burying his fingers into Harry’s curls to pull him closer as he licks into Harry’s mouth. Harry moans into Niall’s mouth, bringing his own hands up to curl around the sides of Niall’s neck. Niall tastes like beer and a little bit of vodka and crisps; it’s not the best combination but Harry still feels like he’s in heaven. 

Niall pulls back, then, pressing his forehead against Harry’s. He’s panting, his breath mixing with Harry’s own pants. “Let’s leave.”

“W-what?”

“Take me home with you.”

+

Harry lets Niall take charge. Let’s Niall push him against every surface and every wall as they stumble through Harry’s small flat towards his bedroom. Lets Niall undress him, kissing him all over as he goes because, God, Niall’s mouth is a talented one. Lets Niall push him gently onto his bed.

He watches Niall undress himself. Watches Niall crawl on top of him, kissing his way up Harry’s thighs and torso all the way up to his lips. 

They snog for a while, their bodies tangled up in each other, hands and lips roaming over every inch of skin they can reach on each other. 

Harry reaches blindly for the lube and a condom in his bedside table and Niall takes them, smirking down at Harry’s shaking hands. He blushes, thinking it’s ridiculous that he’s embarrassed about being nervous but not about being naked – not that he’s ever been embarrassed about being naked.

Niall takes his time with him, massaging him and stretching him open slowly. Harry’s panting and keening and begging Niall for more as Niall rolls the condom over himself. He’s a right mess as Niall moves over him and pushes inside – and then it’s all gasps and moans and heat and sparks and fireworks all over the place. 

It doesn’t take long for either of them to reach their peaks. Harry claws at Niall’s arms, pulling him down to hold him close and Niall buries his face into the crook of Harry’s neck. Harry comes with a breathless moan, chokes on a gasp – and Niall comes, into the condom while he’s still buried deep inside him, with a broken sob into the side of Harry’s face. 

Moments later they’re all giggles and flailing limbs as they struggle to clean themselves up and get comfortable. The last thing Harry sees before sleep finds him is Niall’s beautiful, angelic, sleeping face. 

X

[Seven]

Harry thinks his heart kind of breaks when he wakes up alone. 

The first thing he notices when his mind wakes up and his eyes begin to flutter open is how cold he feels despite the sheet pulled all the way up to his neck. He feels cold in an empty, alone sort of way and when he rolls cautiously onto his back is when memories of the events from the night before – and early morning – come rushing back. He remembers seeing Niall and talking to Niall and leaving the party early with Niall and bringing Niall here and sleeping with Niall and then falling asleep with Niall. His head – and his heart – is so full of Niall it hurts. And it hurts even more that the space beside him in his bed is empty and that all of Niall’s clothes are gone along with Niall.

He feels used and cheap and tossed aside. He feels alone, like truly lonely. 

Tears burn the backs of his eyes and he squeezes them shut, pressing the heels of his hands against his eyelids to keep from crying. He won’t cry, he tells himself, repeating it like a mantra in his head. He won’t cry – not now and not for Niall. Not for this.

Perhaps he should’ve seen it coming, considering every other time he’s seen Niall in the past Niall had disappeared quickly after their encounter. Perhaps the time Niall had spent with him became too much and “fate” decided it has other plans. Either way he feels like he should’ve been prepared for this. He’s heard horror stories about things like this, seen the-morning-after scenes in movies; he’s read enough novels and seen enough movies to have known how this would end. 

It was nothing more than a drunken one-night-stand and Harry shouldn’t have expected Niall to stick around. 

But he wanted it – and he wishes that Niall would’ve. Because now he’s had a taste of Niall – both literally and figuratively. Because he knows the sounds of Niall’s breathless moans and little gasps and grunts, knows what Niall sounds like when he comes, knows what Niall looks like after he’s come, knows what Niall smells like and tastes like and feels like. And now he wants to know more.

He wants to know every little thing about Niall, down to the most random, useless fact. 

But Niall’s gone. Again. And yeah, they go to the same university now so they’re bound to run into each other again – but then what? 

He eventually does allow himself a short, quiet cry before he wipes his eyes dry and pushes himself out of bed. He isn’t hungry at all, reckons he lost his appetite the second he woke up, but he knows he has to eat something. But first he decides to clean. His sheets smell like a mixture of Niall’s cologne and sex and he needs to get rid of it so he pulls on some boxers and strips the bed of his sheets before tossing them, along with his clothes from last night, in the hamper. He goes to clean up the lube and the condom he’d tied and tossed lazily onto the floor in his drunken, euphoric state, then, and notices that the condom is gone and the lube has been put back into the drawer of his bedside table. 

Well, he thinks, at least Niall had the decency to tidy up a bit.

[He’s beginning to wish he hadn’t hooked up with Niall at all, now, because he’s getting bitter and angrier and he’d almost prefer it if he could’ve kept his image of Niall as innocent and perfect.]

He decides to make his way to the kitchen, tucking his head into Zayn’s room to see if the Bradford boy has come home only to find it empty along the way and that’s when everything stops and changes. That’s when he sees Niall standing in front of the stove in the kitchen, wearing the same clothes from the night before. There’s a mixing bowl on the counter next to him and next to the bowl is a box pancake mix and a measuring glass.

Harry blinks, surprised – because is he making breakfast?

He walks further into the kitchen, standing so that the small island is between them. And he forgets for a moment that he’s only wearing his boxers, but decides he doesn’t care anyway. 

Niall must hear him because he turns his head to look at him. “Oh, hey,” he says, smiling softly. His gaze travels from Harry’s face down his torso to his belly button, which is where the counter hides the rest of his body anyway. Then his gaze snaps back up to meet Harry’s. “How’d you sleep?”

“Uh, good,” Harry replies awkwardly. “You?”

“Good,” Niall grins, turning back towards the counter in front of him. 

Harry watches Niall pour the pancake mix into the bowl and then measure out the right amount of water to mix with it. Niall’s hair is all over the place, sticking out and up and over and his muscle shirt leaves little to the imagination, showing off the way the muscles in his back move with his motions. He almost moans out loud.

“I hope you’re hungry,” Niall says, tossing a look over his shoulder.

“I thought you left.”

Niall blinks, freezing in his movements. “I – do you want me to? Because I can, if you-“

“No!” Harry yelps, his feet taking him around the island to stand kind of next to Niall – and, coincidentally, between Niall and the front door. “No, I just – it’s just what I thought. I woke up and you were gone.”

“I got hungry,” Niall admits, his cheeks turning pink. “And I didn’t want to use your food so I went to that little store across the street and found pancake mix, so…I just – I thought we could have breakfast. But, I mean, we don’t have to.”

“I want to,” Harry says, probably too quickly. 

Niall smiles. “You like pancakes?”

“Well, it’d be a little hard to say no, now, wouldn’t it?” Harry teases, reaching for a banana out of the fruit bowl. 

Niall rolls his eyes and mutters something about Harry being a cheeky little monkey as he turns back to finish preparing the pancakes.

+

Harry has since changed into a pair of sweatpants and an old, battered Rolling Stones t-shirt and they’ve both eaten about five, massive pancakes each when things get quiet and sort of…awkward. It’s like neither of them knows what to do or say. Harry takes both of their plates from the island counter and puts them in the sink to let the syrup soak in hot water. When he turns back to look at Niall, the beautiful Irish boy is playing with his own fingers, staring down at them intently. Awkwardly. 

“So, um,” Harry starts, running a hand through his hair nervously. “I’ve never done this before.”

“Yeah, me neither,” Niall mutters.

Silence falls between them once more and Harry can’t help but wonder when everything got so weird. Everything was fine a few minutes ago, they were laughing and joking around between mouthfuls of food and now it’s just… It’s like neither of them know what to do now or where to go from here.

“I don’t – I don’t know how to do this,” Niall whispers, pushing himself to his feet. “I should go, yeah? I should-”

“I don’t know how to do this either, Niall,” Harry says, reaching desperately across the counter to grab at Niall’s fingers. Niall stops and looks at him, allowing Harry to link their fingers together. “But please – please don’t go. I don’t want you to disappear again. I want – I want to know you, you know? I want to spend the day together today and maybe do something tonight and I want to do this, even if neither of us knows what we’re doing. I want…I want this. And I hope you want this this too.”

Niall sighs, sitting back down on the stool. “I do – I want this,” he assures Harry.

Harry grins, walking around the island to stand directly in front of the blond boy whose lips are still swollen from the activities the night before. He watches the way Niall’s eyes flicker down to Harry’s lips and he smirks, moving in between Niall’s parted legs to press the length of his torso against Niall’s. Niall looks back into his eyes and Harry’s breath catches in his throat; it’s like being swallowed by the ocean. 

Niall’s arms slip around Harry’s waist to pull him impossibly closer. “So we’re doing this?”

Harry nods. “Please don’t go away again,” he whispers. “Or, if you do just take me with you.”

The Irish boy grins, tilting his head just so to catch Harry’s lips in his. “Deal.”

End.

Generous Palmstroke

I began a journey this year into submission, into what it means to me to declare with passion that I am a slave who needs to serve, and through this blog I have shown with an open heart the pain and the process of it all. From the start where I had footsteps walking beside me, to the many months now where I have been alone and searching for the purpose to my existence, so many of you have been reading and supporting and reaching out to me through that journey.

But that part of this blog is over now. The search is over now.

Something new is about to unfold here.

My heart has been decimated so many times in my life where I have dared to feel love for another, and the most devastating of all was allowing myself to give it all completely as I embraced being a slave this year, only to end up wrecked once more.

I have been walking wounded and ever since. I didn’t trust my heart to love again; didn’t feel ready, like it was possible. Cold inside… afraid. My desire to serve hampered by the wound. So when I met him… I was not looking to serve. There was no desire, no motive. I came to him seeking a connection with someone else in his life, something else… and yet something happened. Something neither of us expected.

And those are the moments that really count, when you know things are meant to be.

I was so nervous, so afraid when I messaged him the first time. I remember clearly the emotion of it, the feeling of wanting his approval… in a way I can’t describe. He already had my respect; a great man who had achieved so much in his life, a boss of a wonderful family and partner to an equally incredible gentleman whom I’d found myself feeling affection for. Some tolerance of my presence was the most I had aimed for; outright rejection a very real fear.

“I am happy to welcome you, to explore whatever you like in safety and with care and respect from us all”

His words to me in the very first reply. Forever etched into my memory. It was like… an unexpectedly warm hug… one I didn’t know I had been looking for… one I didn’t know I needed… but into those arms I melted… and in that moment I found acceptance and peace.

It was only the beginning.

That first conversation took place one month ago; and in that time many of you have seen me changed, have seen me happy. It leaks out of me like rays of light behind clouds, and it has all been because of him.

We have journeyed together; we have found in each other the missing parts of what we hoped for and yet had started to believe we would never find. It unfolded to us unexpectedly… organically… naturally… romantically. He was not looking for another slave, and I was not coming to him to serve. And yet we fit together like two pieces of a puzzle, a picture now complete.

I have kept myself from saying anything sooner; to take a moment of privacy for ourselves as we began… to be his and enjoy that feeling alone. But now it is time to share my joy.

My friends. I have found my Master.

I have found the man I will serve the rest of my life.

You will learn much of him I’m sure; I cannot help but wish to continue recording the feelings of service, of submission, of letting myself be open and wearing my heart on my sleeve.

But now you will see what happens when a slave finds his Master; what happens when he is collared. When he finds his place. I am not collared yet - that is a moment to come. But a wonderful new start is happening for me and I am so happy… more than I can describe.

I’m so happy to make this post at last. Thank you for all your support, and I hope all pups searching for their owners take comfort that it will happen… just when it is meant to and with the right person.

I love you Master. I wake with thanks every day for serving you and I hope to always do you proud.

- Beast, November 2016.

Pictoral lyrics - Bjork, Generous Palmstroke from Vespertine 2001.

Life On The Line (1/?) *Steve Rogers x Reader*

Originally posted by selgomezgifs

Originally posted by recordshopchris

Summary: (Y/N) Stark is back from boarding school in England. After six-years of not seeing her dad properly, she has a lot to learn in the years she has left. She also has to deal with living in a tower with a bunch of heros… it would be good if she didn’t fall for a certain one, who happens to be triple her age.
Warnings: Swearing, Age-Gap romance, slight smut- later on maybe. 
Authors Note: I have no frigging idea how long this is going to be. All I know is, it’s after the Winter Soldier but before Age of Ultron. I don’t know if it will feature smut… this is the first time Tumblr has accepted this in posting. Hopefully you enjoy it. You can place your name, eye colour and hair colour but for other things I am putting in because it’s easier. Please message stuff you might want to happen in this, I am making this longer than five-parts.- Rosalee

Life On The Line (2/?) *Steve Rogers x Reader*   - Second part of this series.
Life On The Line (3/?) *Steve Rogers x Reader*  - Third part of this series.


Chapter One - Living with Heros is going to be… different.

You pushed through the thick crowd of people at the airport. Going onto your tippy toes to see above the crowd, you couldn’t see anyone who would be picking you up, he wouldn’t forget you’d be coming home today… would he?

No, you spoke to Pepper before getting on the plane, she wouldn’t allow him to forget. You pushed the heavy trolley full of luggage through the crowd, trying to avoid hitting anyone although you kinda wanted to barge through, the annoyance level getting higher within yourself. 

A small little sigh escaped you when you see Happy Hogan smiling, holding a sign that reads “(Y/N) Stark” across it in black marker. You pushed the trolley up to the man, he frowned but recognition formed across his face.

(Y/N),  he grinned, pulling you into a hug and you chuckled, hugging back with as much excitement. He had worked for your father for as long as you could even remember; if anything he was a friend like Rhodey. He pushed the trolley out toward the black SUV. The drive wasn’t long but long enough to make light conversation

How was…Bruton School for Girls?” he asked, asking if that was, in fact, the school and if it was good.

It was amazing, I mean it was scary being eleven and leaving my home country but I felt at home from day three, everyone was nice and proper,  you scrunched your nose up. Very British but not at the same time,” he nodded with a grin. 

How’s my dad?  you asked, but he didn’t answer. I still cannot believe the whole Iron Man thing, crazy.  He chuckled, pulling up to something that was not Stark Tower but instead had a giant A on it.

 Happy gestured for you to go in and he would take the bags straight to your old room. This was not something he had mentioned to you, well he never mentioned work or Iron Man to you… you didn’t really talk all that often, that was going to change now that you had finished boarding school.

“Welcome back, (Y/N),” you grinned at Jarvis’ voice, how you missed being home, it never really dawned on you how much you relied on Jarvis but you had… it was awful being without the AI. 

“Tony is down in the workshop, I have informed him of your arrival.”  you nodded, unable to speak as you looked around what seemed to be a newly furnished building. Lounging sofas, the walls were all windows looking out to New York, a bar and black spiral staircase leading to who-knows-where. 

“(Y/N),  you grinned looking at your father, Tony Stark. “How was the flight?”  he asked, he stopped walking once he was beside you, he hadn’t changed much in the six years - he got a haircut but nothing major.  

“Long,” you chuckled as he nodded in agreement, even after six years the connection between you both is strained, you can’t remember the last time your own father had hugged you. 

“How’s the hero thing?”  you asked as he grinned lightly at that question; he seemed a lot happier now.

“Great, saving people is my new occupation,” he quipped. “I’m actually part of a team now,” he stated and you frowned.

“But I thought you don’t play well with others?”  you asked, slightly confused with how much he may have changed, obviously you talked but it was never for long and you stayed at the school during the holidays like some other girls. 

“The Avengers, we assemble to take down evil,” he comments, “actually, this building is where they all stay sometimes, they have homes of their own but this is like the ultimate HQ.  You frowned, “don’t worry they are easy to be around, they mainly sleep after missions,”  you nodded, trying to take in the fact you may be living with heroes now.

“Everyone this my daughter, (Y/N) Stark,” you were nervous, to say the least, a bunch of mighty heroes all looking at you, also Tony with slight confusion; signalling he doesn’t talk about you… at all… to anyone of his friends. 
“She went to a boarding school in England, Bruton.”  

They all nodded when looking at you, you fiddled with the ends of your (H/C) hair, shifting under their gazes. He smiled gesturing to each as he introduced them. 

“This is Bruce Banner AKA The Hulk, you nodded with an eye roll, already knowing of Doctor Banner, he waved awkwardly and you did the same back to him. “Then the two assassins; Clint and Natasha,”  he pointed to the two people at the back. 

The male had short dirty blonde hair, blue eyes and was fiddling with some arrows, that made you slightly tense. The women beside him were beyond gorgeous, short red hair and a piercing gaze, she smiled brightly at you, waving as she did, “and the Might Thor,  he pointed to the brute of a man, long blonde hair and way taller than anyone else in the room. “He’s an actual God.” 

Tony looked at you, you raised your eyebrows, “he makes thunder, he commented with a sigh, almost sounding envious.  

Hey,” you muttered to them all. This seemed like a great team; two geniuses, one who happens to possess technology that is way advanced, the other can turn into a mighty fighting green thing, two brilliant assassins and one Thundering God. 

“Ahh here’s the old man,”  you looked at your father, a frown on your face as you looked to where he was staring, no old man in sight; a tall man in a brown leather jacket stood in the doorway with the same frown, a light smile on his face, looking at the team. 

“That’s Steve Rogers, also known as Captain America or to me… Capsicle, he was frozen for seventy years,” he states. You had heard the name before, Howard Stark, your grandfather had mentioned his stories to Tony, who maybe told you some as a child. A sarcastic laugh emitted from the man. 

“Cap, this is my daughter (Y/N), she’s been in ye’ole’ England for school,” he gestured to you, he smiled lightly and extended a hand.

Steve, he said not Capsicle,” he stated giving a look to your father, a chuckle came out as you repeated your name, stepping back and taking this all in. 

You leave for six years and in that time space, your dad becomes a hero and now lives with a super-fighting team? You kinda wished you were back in England living with a mass amount of girls, that seemed easier than this. 

(This was meant to be out for our hit of ONE THOUSAND followers, only this is out when we hit TWO THOUSAND followers, which is fucking insane. I cannot believe how quickly this had come along, I am so so so over joyed and super stoked. Thank you so much. I hope you enjoyed the first part, I am going to make this more exciting but I wanted this to be an introduction to how this is going to be, so hopefully its okay. Remember you can still request; imagines, ships and one shots by myself or Angie - Rosalee) 

Liam: Private Party

This is my first post on this blog, my first posted fic and whatnot. 

A weird fluff about Liam?


You were warm all over. It was like there was a heater underneath you, with big hot wheat bags across your back. You growled a happy sound, and the wheat bags got heavier. Almost like they were arms. Arms that were tightening and snuggling you into a chest. Which explained the gentle rising and falling of your head and the light thumping.

Slowly, you opened your eyes, blinking and hoping you were cuddled up with Malia, but knowing you weren’t if the lack of breasts and too much muscle was anything to go by.

The blur was slow to dissipate, eventually forming into fluffy dirty blonde hair and parted full lips. No one else in the pack had blonde hair. And the only other guy you could’ve ended up snuggled with would’ve been Isaac, cuddler extraordinaire, but he had declined to come last night.

You squirmed slightly, both trying to free yourself and remember last night. You felt his arms tighten again and heard him inhale deeply. A definite sign of waking up. Closing your eyes, you went soft, focusing instead on relaxing and playing asleep.

“Whargh…” He groaned, his arms solidifying into wakefulness around you. You could tell the moment he realised who he was cuddled with, his body tensing before forcing himself to relax and sliding out from under you.

Trying not to take offense, you rolled away from him, fake sleep-whining and curling back up without him.

You heard him sigh softly before padding away. Once you were sure he was gone, you sat up, searching out your phone on its wall charger and texting Isaac. Only after you had composed the correct message and pressed send did you check your gallery. It wasn’t pretty. And it definitely brought back what had happened.

“Sleep over at my place, you’re all coming!” Lydia announced firmly, before giving you a glance and less firmly saying “And Isaac isn’t coming?”

You nodded an agreement and she perked back up. Isaac was the one thing you were a proper expert on. Everything else you had mediocre skill or knowledge about.

“And, we of not wasteful alcohol consumption, will be drinking and brightening the lives of those who cannot.” Stiles said and you cringed slightly. It was fine when you assumed everyone around you was drunk but to know that the others would literally remember everything of the night before, even if you didn’t, was a little nerve wracking.

You were a bouncy drunk, to say the least.

Your phone blipped a message from Isaac and the group chat on messenger. Clicking Isaacs first, you gnawed on your lip until the screen came up.

Woof Wolf: You little minx, I knew I shouldn’t have left you alone with him. It was obviously all him and you were just too drunk to say no.

There was an attached image of you and Liam, you with your arms spread wide and a sun bright grin on your face while his hands were stuffed in his pockets, his face embarrassed and awkwardly pleased looking.

You tapped out a reply before opening the chat to view the images Scott had sent ten minutes ago. Assuming it was meant to be a kind gesture, to share the memories he had collected last night, it didn’t feel that way. You scrolled through the images, seeing the one Isaac had sent, followed by another of you mid terrible dance move, Stiles beside you looking equally dumb. And another with you taking a leap into the pool, Malia, sober, and trying to stop you in the background, your face relaxed and sure that you’d be fine. The next one was Malia and you dripping wet beside the pool, her face grumpy and yours amazed at something off camera.

It went on, photos of you and the others in various ridiculous states. Until you came to a set of three, the first Liam sitting in an arm chair, with you slightly off to the side. Followed by you climbing into his lap, his face blushing and tight lipped. And the third, and last one, of you snuggled against his chest with his arms wrapped around you. Your eyes closed and face content while his flamed red with a nervous grin.

“Lets do some shots! Scott, pour this I can’t tell which cup is which!” Stiles shouted at his best friend, who was already right beside him. Scott smiled awkwardly and you raised your phone, trying not to wobble and wondering why the image wouldn’t focus right.

“Whatever.” You said softly, pressing the button three times instead of once. “Whatever.” You repeated.

“Y/N! Come over here!” Lydia called and you giggled, wobbling slightly on your first step before getting your sea legs and making your way over.

“Yes, Codename Duchess?” You whispered conspiratorially and she laughed. You took a selfie as she laughed, liking that her face was so happy.

“Just telling you,” She whispered loudly, “That your outfit is so cute, because I dressed you, and because you helped. You’re so good at things and stuff.” She sighed and Stiles waltzed over, taking her hand and pulling her in tight.

“That’s my girlfriend, Y/N! Get your own!” He laughed, giving Lydia a gentle squeeze and she rested her head on his shoulder, eyes closing.

“I have my own!” You replied, taking Malia’s hand from where she had suddenly appeared. “This is my girlfriend! Li-li!”

Malia rolled her eyes and you leant against her, giving her a dopey grin.

“You may have dated her, but she’s with me now!” You yelped as she gave you a gentle shove to the couch, “And she is frisky too!” You cackled, swiping a shot from the bench and downing it.

“Oh dear.” You mumbled, putting the glass down and opening your mouth wide. “Shraaaaaaaah” You breathed, imagining fire blasting from your mouth.

You turned to Liam and Malia, opening your arms wide, smiling toothily. “It is clear that I am in fact a supernatal, I am a dragon and you’ll kneel on your feet before my mighty might!”

Your phone beeped again. It was Isaac.

Woof Wolf: I’ll be there in about an hour to come and get you. I’d like to hear all the sordid details of your supernatal adventures

You blushed, “Couldn’t even get out natural, could you.”

A few more touches and you saw that they were already talking about the super accident that was your pronunciation.

(via Pack Chat) Lydia: Breakfast for whoever’s up, kitchen

You groaned, your head still feeling a little fuzzy as you rose and headed for the kitchen. Juice is what you really needed.

You padded down the hallway, passing the bathroom and dining room before entering the sun filled kitchen.

At the doorway you hissed, tripping backwards and covering your eyes. You heard laughter but couldn’t place its owner.

“Maliaaaa.” You called whinily and she laughed again.

“In here, girlfriend.” You slowly uncovered your eyes, bit by bit adjusting to the sunlight.

Scott, Kira, Malia and Liam were all at the table, looking pep filled, while Mason and Stiles had their faces on the table, nibbling tiny bites. Lydia was situated on top of a counter, looking regally hung over.

You stumbled forward and sat on the cool tile floor next to Malias chair.

“Why is it so hot?” You whispered forlornly and Malia petted your hair gently. Reaching your hand up you made a grabbing motion and she put a grape in your fingers.

You felt like you were three. But, in all honesty, it was less embarrassing than trying to navigate eating on your own.

Nibbling away, Scott watched you, a look spreading across his face before he opened his mouth.

“Oh mighty dragon, how do I kneel on my feet?” He chuckled and you blushed a deep red, making everyone laugh.

“Yeah laugh it up, this is the last laugh you’ll have. Next time, I’ll crispify you.” You grouched and the laughed harder.

You felt your phone vibrate and pulled it out.

Woof Wolf: Is the door unlocked?

“Lydia, is the front door locked?” You asked, mid rise. Either way you’d be getting up to give him a hug and beg him to take you away from these demons.

“Yeah, its good. Come in Isaac!” She called and you heard the front door open and close. Once he came into view you rushed him, leaping into his arms and clinging close.

With a laugh, he wrapped his arms around you tightly and gave you a sniff.

“Gross, Y/N, you’re all stinky.” He laughed, jokingly pushing you away.

You shoved him, before giving him puppy eyes.

“Isaac, they’re making fun of my prowess, take me away from them!” You yelped, and he chuckled, giving them all stern looks while you smugly watched on.

“You guys shouldn’t doubt, Mushu here, she’s clearly dangerous.”

Your jaw flopped open with the betrayal and you thumped him hard in the right shoulder. Glancing around the room everyone looked jovial except Liam, whose eyes were softly glowing.

“Dishonour on you, dishonour on you, dishonour on your cows, dishonour on you all!” You growled before beaming at Isaac.

“Time to make our exit?” Isaac grinned down at you and you nodded.

“Skedaddle time.”


“Look, I know that you know what I’m talking about. And I know that you will break eventually. So why don’t you just cut our time in half and tell me.” You coaxed. “Just confess.”

Isaac shrugged, leant against the lockers casually. “I don’t know the answer to question three, Y/N, why don’t you ask someone actually in your class? Or your grade?” He snarked and you hissed a breath.

“You just want me to fail. You want me to fail this homework, then fail the class, then flunk out of high school and be dependent on you for the rest of my life to get by because I can’t get a job with my sophomore level education and then you’ll meet someone younger and she’ll get jealous of our amazing friendship and you’ll have to Hansel and Gretel me and I’ll be stuck in the woods where I’ll end up living in Malias old den, alone and cold before you realise the error of your ways and come looking for me but it’s too late, I’m gone. And then nine years later, we meet again. I met Brett in the woods, he protected me, took me in and we fell in love. We had our first child, Emily, and she has his eyes and my wrists. We are still so in love, so many years later. I’m pregnant again. It’s a boy this time, I am going to name him Carl. You want me back with you, you wish we were still best friends, so close, but I’ve moved on. And I tell you it’s time for you to as well, because you waited for me all these years. You agree reluctantly, but it’s a lie. In the end, you could never move on from me, instead you while away your years, mastering the painting skill and painting hundreds of portraits of me, back when we used to be friends. You turn to alcohol but it doesn’t get you drunk, it just tastes bad and you use the taste to punish yourself for the mistakes you made all those years ago, eventually turning to an early grave.”

Isaacs face is placid while the rest of the pack, who’d wandered over are wide eyed and confused.

“That’s exactly what I want, Y/N.” He purrs and you clench your fist.

“Damn you, Lahey, don’t you dare fall in love with me.” You twist away and come face to face with Liam.

“Hey!” You start, a chipper tone invading your voice.

“Question three is Tybalt. I got it from Mase.” He grins and you leap at him, crushing him into a hug.

“I guess I won’t have to go through all that torture before I marry Brett, thank goodness.” You mutter over your shoulder before spinning Liam around and pressing the page to his back.

“Marry Brett?” He asks as you write and you chuckle.

“Who else am I going to marry? He’s all muscly and I bet he can dance. And he is really tall too. He’d make a great father to my children, whose names are yet unchosen.” You explain and Liam shakes his head.

“He’s too into sports, and he might end up marrying Mason, why should you get him?” He countered. You lifted the paper from his back, finished and he turned back to face you.

“But Mason is so hot already, he could find a husband in a heartbeat. Can’t I have Brett?” You whined and Liam smiled, opening his mouth to answer, before closing it as Isaac grabbed your hand.

“Time for class, lovebird, and we’re going this way.”

You muttered a goodbye to Liam, squinting at his frown before turning away and following Isaac.

“He is going to murder me soon, so you better be into him.” Isaac sighed, adjusting his dark blue scarf.

You ran your fingers over it, soft. “No way! He’s just mad he couldn’t trash talk Brett some more.” You shrugged and peeled away, entering your classroom.


“What is up with yours and Isaacs relationship?” Liam snapped, looking ridiculously grumpy.

You sighed dramatically, fluttering your hand to your heart and giving him a doe eyed look. “We are so close I sometimes forget where one of us ends and the other begins!” You ramped up the southern belle accent and gave your eyelashes a flutter.

“You’re not using that as a sex reference are you?” He growled, his eyes glowing golden instead of their usually summer blue.

“Ew no! He’s practically my brother, you sex demon.” You yelped, taking a step back from him. “We are strictly platonic. Not that it’s any of your business, sex demon!”

Liam blushed furiously before seeming to gather himself. “I want to make it my business.”

You snapped out a retort, not listening to what he said. “You’ll have to fill out a form and then we might get back to you in three to seven business days.”

Liam blinked at you, and you blinked at him, realising what he said.

“Y-y-your request has been filed and accepted, if you’ll give us a date for your appointment I’m sure we can work something out…” You stuttered, blushing right along with him.

“God you’re a dork, Y/N!” Isaac called from across the hallway before humming the tune, Kiss the Girl from The Little Mermaid and walking away.

You turned back to Liam, who was grinning ear to ear and you beamed at him.

I haven’t posted about this on my blog yet because every time I think of doing so it is like 4am and I doubt anyone is awake. It is 1am now and I still have that doubt but it is winter break so…. I know there are some people who remember me talking about how nervous I was for my interview for my masters program last month, and how I wouldn’t hear if I got accepted until January (idk if I posted that publically or just privately to a few who were curious about how my interview went) Well something compelled me to check my email a few nights ago, and I found an email from my university. And I am excited to say that I GOT ACCEPTED INTO MY MASTER OF OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY PROGRAM!!!!!! I START IN MAY!!!! AND WHEN I AM DONE MY LIFE IS PRETTY MUCH GOLDEN! MY DREAMS ARE COMING TRUE AND I CANNOT BE HAPPIER! 2016 is already going to be way way better than 2015 was, and it hasn’t even started yet! Thank you for your kind words of encouragement for the last few weeks, I really appreciate it guys, and I love you all so so much <3

Four Halloweens

31st October 1981 – 6:35pm

‘Halloween is more fun in our world.’

Harry took no notice of his father’s pronouncement, and simply bounced a little more determinedly in his arms.

He was pressed against the glass of the window as his father held him up, his eyes round as they took in the sight of Halloween being celebrated – if one could call it that - in the small village of Godric’s Hollow; Harry’s interest could be engaged with something as simple as a dead leaf, but James was distinctly unimpressed with the lack of festivities.

 A few children in costume ran past from time to time, and there were definitely a few pumpkins in nearby windows, but by and large, Halloween was passing largely unmarked before their eyes.

Not that the Potter house was doing much better at marking what was a very important event in the magical world – the little family was beginning to show the wear of so much time locked away from the world, and neither James nor Lily could summon up the energy or inclination to produce decorations.

James had considered it – he could transfigure a pumpkin easily enough, and if he made some paper bats Lily could charm them to fly….he’d thought of so many things, and each time he had he’d come to the same conclusion – why bother?  

There really didn’t seem to be much point in anything anymore.

Lily joined him in the window, and his arm automatically found its way around her shoulders, Harry held tightly between them as they stared out at a world they were beginning to think they’d never re-join.

Recognising the movement of her shoulders as yet more silent sobbing – he’d become proficient at spotting the signs of her depression by now – he did the only thing he could and held his family tighter.

31st October 1982 – 4.45am

The sound of boots crunching across grass crisp with autumn frost alerted James to the presence of another person in the cemetery. He hadn’t expected anyone else to be here – Halloween wasn’t traditionally a day for visiting graves at the best of times, and before sunrise certainly wasn’t most people’s idea of the appropriate time. It wasn’t his idea of an appropriate time either, in all honesty, but he hadn’t been able to sleep at all – Merlin knew, his sleeping pattern had been rough for a while now, but last night had been the worst for a long, long time.

It had been a year, a full twelve months since the events that meant he – and Lily, and Harry – had been able to venture out into the world again, finally safe.

A year of counting the cost.

The footsteps came closer, and James’ hand clenched tighter on his concealed wand. It might have been a year since he’d been officially in danger, but you didn’t live under that kind of storm cloud for as long as he had without it leaving marks. Scars, really.

Lily knew that better than anyone. Which was why she walked directly around to his side, where he could clearly see who she was, and that she held no wand – old habits died hard.

She knelt down alongside him, one arm snaking around his waist in a motion honed over years, and smiled wistfully at the headstone in front of them, that marked the grave of their truest friend. ‘Hi Sirius. Happy Halloween.’

She remembered the funeral like it was yesterday; James had spoken to Andromeda, the only cousin Sirius had had any time for, and they’d agreed to bury him next to James’ parents, in the little cemetery that served both muggles and magical folk in the small village of Little Somerfield. One more tiny act of defiance towards the Black family, and a too-small gesture of filial love and respect for the brother who’d taken the secret of their location to the grave, safeguarding his godson’s life with his own.

It was believed that Voldemort had delivered the killing curse himself – neither James nor Lily doubted that Sirius would have been grimly proud of that. It had taken several days for the news to sink in, coming as it did on the heels of Voldemort’s defeat at the hands of Dumbledore. They could only be thankful that their new found and hard-won freedom had allowed them the comfort of their other friends.

‘I still can’t believe it.’ James’ voice was hoarse, the effort of not crying making his words sound strangled. ‘It’s been a year, and I still look for him. I keep finding his stuff all over the house, I keep staring at that bloody motorcycle in the garage like he’s going to appear from behind it any minute. And Harry, Harry drags around that bloody cuddly black dog like it’s his lifeline and I can’t bear it Lil, I can’t bear it…’

And then she couldn’t hear anything but the sound of her husband sobbing over his brother’s grave, and she did the only thing she could – she wrapped her arms around him, and cried with him.

31st October 1985, 8.12pm

‘Available to any student whose parent cannot, or will not, support them during their time at Hogwarts - the Sirius Black Hardship Fund!’

Cheers from the crowd almost drowned out the end of Dumbledore’s announcement, and James couldn’t help the grin that spread across his face as he looked down at his beaming wife.

‘You’re right – this is perfect. The best thing we could have done in his name.’

‘I am known to be quite clever from time to time.’ She replied archly, smiling fondly at her husband even as she restrained Harry from running off into the crowd; he’d become a little too curious for his own good, and had a habit of wandering off to find interesting things. She dreaded sending him to Hogwarts, knowing that he’d likely manage to get into even more trouble than his father had.

‘I am very well aware of that, love.’

James pulled his wife and son into a hug, and held onto them tightly – these precious things of his that his best friend had defended beyond his last breath - until a polite cough indicated that it was time for the people responsible for endowing the Sirius Black Hardship Fund to mingle with the crowd.

Half an hour later Lily managed to drift back to her husband, who was standing to one side of the room watching Harry play with young Neville Longbottom and his mother.

‘Cute.’ She commented as she watched Harry tag Alice. ‘It’s good to see Alice out. Losing Frank hit her so hard.’

James nodded. ‘I know. It’s good to see everybody…healing, I suppose.’

It had taken a long time for the Potters to feel able to spend time at social gatherings. They’d both thought that they’d been so deprived of others during their time locked away that they’d crave company as soon as they were able to get it – in fact, the opposite had been true. Crowds made them nervous; parties were unbearable.

For two such previously gregarious people, it had been a shock and a source of shame. It had taken them a long time to come to terms with the fact that they had not, after all, come through the war unscathed. But they’d worked hard at it, they’d given themselves both time and space, and now they were enjoying a gathering of people all celebrating the life of someone that they both loved beyond measure.

Progress was a wonderful thing, even if it was attained in small steps.

31st October 1987, 6.10pm

‘Harry! Harry, come on, we’re going to be late!’

Lily rested one hand on the newel post as she hollered up the stairs at her son. She paused for a moment, then opened her mouth to yell again but was forestalled by thunderous footsteps as her seven year old barrelled down the stairs.

She surveyed Harry carefully, then turned her head and shouted for her husband.

‘James! James Potter, are you mad? Your son cannot go trick or treating like this.’

James appeared from the kitchen, his hands full of wriggling one year old. ‘His costume isn’t the problem Lil – I can’t get this one into this pumpkin thingy.’

Lily sighed. ‘Pass her over.’

James grinned and handed his daughter over, complete with pumpkin costume dangling from one leg. Lily smiled at her daughter and sat down on the hallway floor to work her into the puffy costume.

‘There we go baby girl! James, please do something about Harry.’

He surveyed his handiwork. ‘Looks good to me Lil.’

‘It’s too good James, and that’s the problem.’ Lily rose gracefully from the floor, fully costumed daughter held in front of her, taking a moment to stick her tongue out in childish triumph over her husband. ‘I said, make Harry a nice costume. What you have done, is transfigure our son to look like a troll.’

‘And he looks great!’ James pointed out. ‘Look, I got all the fangs, and the warts, and the overhanging brow and everything!’

‘And what happens when someone asks him to take his mask off?’ Lily asked pointedly.

James paused for a moment. ‘We tell them it’s glued on?’

‘Uh huh, okay.’ Lily responded. ‘And how will we be explaining the claws?’

‘We tell people I work in special effects for movies?’

‘They all think that you’re an accountant.’

James pouted. ‘Come on Lily, he’s going to have the best costume around! I’ll obliviate anyone who ask too many questions, how about that?’

Spotting his wife’s lips twitch, James knew he’d nearly won this one. So he played dirty.

‘What does Serene think, huh?’ He scooped their daughter from Lily’s arms and swung her around until she giggled. ‘You want to let Harry go out in his awesome costume, that your daddy had to research in three different books, don’t you?’

‘Fine.’ Lily knew when she was outgunned. ‘But I’m not pulling any strings at the Ministry if you get caught using magic on muggles.’

James leaned over to plant an exuberant kiss on her hairline as he continued to twirl Serene around; Harry pretended to vomit.

‘That’s okay Lil, I’ll get Moony to do it.’

anonymous asked:

For the jay/evie prompts maybe you could do something where they get mistaken for a couple and instead of protesting they go along with it and then after they talk about it and feelings are revealed??

First off, I am so so sorry that I haven’t been able to keep posting regularly. I still have tons of prompts to fulfill and I’m nowhere near finishing them but I will, pinky promise. So this one is 1.4k so under a read more and there will be a sequel (which is going to be my next prompt). I have to say I loved this theory about Jay being the lost son of Aladdin and Jasmine, hence their appearance in this fic. It is not said in this that they are his parents but I liked to put some mystery in it and I honestly cannot imagine Jay not getting along with Aladdin since they basically share the same past and personality. But anyway, I hope you enjoy!

N.B.: I apologize for any typo you might find, this is (like all of my other prompts) unbeta-ed.

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The idea for this came during au week and I also wanted to write something for @kickassfu‘s bday a month ago now and holy writer’s block batman.

I quickly realized this could be 10k+ words, so made an attempt to keep this short, telling the tale in brief, loosely-connected scenes. Unbetad and barely read through so i can just freaking post. Let me know what you think. Mostly AU, as I don’t watch the show now.


Caroline forgets on a Thursday.

The tendrils of sleep feel like they’re clinging to her more strongly than usual, and she scrubs a hand across her face. What is it she’s supposed to do today? She yawns, stretching her arms out, mind racing and trying to grasp on anything and failing. What is she even doing here? She looks at her surroundings - a hotel room, the air conditioner whispering quietly in the corner, the bed soft and plush - somewhere expensive then. She’s alone, no dent in the pillow next to her, which somehow surprises her. OK. Phone? Phone. She picks it up from the end table and swipes it, breathing a sigh of relief when her thumbprint unlocks.

Opening up her recent calls there’s an incoming call from someone named Cam  the day before, as well as a call to a Bonnie, who has ICE next to her name, made three weeks prior. Ok. Not as much information as she had hoped. She opens the messages, finding a similar state. A lot of recent texts with whoever this Cam is, including a rather final sounding ‘Do not contact me again’. Pissed off, she presses call. Clearly Cam is a lost cause, but maybe he? she? can tell her some basic details.

“I told you not to call me ever again.” The voice sounds nervous, almost afraid.

“Yeah well I woke up in a hotel room with no idea who the hell I am or why, so thought maybe you could bend the rules, Cam.” Caroline spits out his name like a curse - she’s scrolling through past messages from him, catching some fervent ‘I love yous’ and heart emojis. How quickly love fades.

She hears a sigh on the other end, then an awkward pause before Cam speaks again. “I am sorry, Caroline. I love you, but I cannot. Talk to Bonnie, your friend.  She will help.” The line goes dead.

Seriously?

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i missed you for 29 years (chapter 5)

AO3

Word Count: 4772

Chapter 1 / Chapter 2 / Chapter 3 / Chapter 4

Pairing: Kawoshin

Notes: Kaworu has to find his way to whatever is going on in the manga ending eventually, right? He’s probably awfully tired though. Title from ‘Slow Show’ by The National

“Regardless of whether or not he ends up successful in upholding some measure of distance; he has to believe it, has to tell himself that what he gets now will be everything.”

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some thoughts as we approach 4/13/2016

last year i remember drawing some art for 4/13/2015 and thinking, “this is going to be it. this is going to be the last 4/13. i know it in my heart, it has to be” but here we are, almost a year later and it still hasn’t ended yet

with every 4/13 that has passed since 2012, i have been overcome with joy when it turns out the comic wont be ending on 4/13 of this specific year! and part of me would be literally so okay with pauses because it prolonged the wait for the ending of the comic and i still had time to revel with a fandom that was, at one point, a very large part of tumblr fandom culture (cringe) and my life as an adolescent. i had more time to spend with these characters who were so special, so real, so unique and so so important to me

as i write this post i feel almost a little silly talking about homestuck so highly in 2016, but i think that even though ive drifted and homestuck is not quite what it used to be, i think homestuck fans like myself, especially those who started reading between 2009 and 2012, can all admit that remembering homestuck will always be hard when you observe just how much of the fandom has moved on. i literally cannot describe how much homestuck influenced me in my writing, my art as a cartoonist, my sense of humor, and my way of thinking. nothing like homestuck has ever existed before. and being a part of something like homestuck was like nothing i had ever experienced before. i understand why people make fun of homestuck, don’t get me wrong. but there is no denying that homestuck is different and it is worth praise regardless of its flaws

this was a fandom that was so active, so productive, so compassionate and intelligent and colorful and talented. and sure, there were some really cringe worthy moments scattered here and there (i.e., spitting in buckets in public spaces and cosplaying gamzee in a grocery store. both of which i did not partake in, but were seen as perfectly fine in that day and age) but it was just so much fun, i swear to god i had more fun with this group of people than in any other fandom and it has affected the person i am today and i am so proud of that. even as i enter my 20′s and would rather forget my experiences of my 17-year old self, being with homestuck is an experience i will never, ever forget. its something that made me truly happy, inspired, confused, passionate and more often than not, angry. but that was just normal and it was so. fucking. fun. it was carefree and it was fun and if i could bottle up that feeling and keep it for as long as i live i would do it in a heartbeat because it reminds me of a time where my problems seemed much less prominent and things were so much simpler

i can distinctly remember the day i started reading it and i was so nervous and curious and overwhelmed because i knew that the comic was well over 5,000 pages when i got to it but the fandom drew me in like nothing else. there was just something about them that seemed so disconnected from all the other fandoms, like some kind of fun secret club you had to be initiated into by reading through over 5,000 and it seemed pointless and impossible to me at first but damn it i could pinpoint the fucking moment when i realized, “holy crap, this is actually really fucking interesting” (which was definitely after act 1 lol)

and oh my god, going to my very first convention as a full-blown homestuck (which coincided, actually) was kind of indescribable. i didn’t know how to sew so i settled for a closet cosplay but, like, as if that mattered. and like, there were at least 250 people in the corner of the second floor of the baltimore convention center for the friday shoot. i was with my best friend and i can remember we would just fawn over every cosplayer we saw and then we started to sing with one of the writers for the music team and it was like a dream, being with all those people who were feeling the same feeling, this feeling of belonging and togetherness. it was honestly a moment that made me feel like i had found something truly fucking special and i never wanted it to end, not ever.

im beginning to lose my train of thought but….hopefully there are other people who understand what im feeling right now. and ive been telling myself that i can handle what andrew throws at us on 4/13 but as the date comes closer i cant shake this feeling in my gut that it’s 100% going to blow me away and make me cry and yearn for days when the “end of homestuck” was nothing more than an enigma