i should keep cleaning

The first time Auston Matthews met Mike Babcock, it was in the Detroit Red Wings’ coaches office at Joe Louis Arena.

Matthews was 17, playing for USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program about 45 minutes west in Ann Arbor. His coach was Don Granato, brother of Tony Granato, assistant to Babcock in Detroit.

The morning of a Red Wings game, Matthews and teammate Matthew Tkachuk came with Don Granato to watch practice and preview life in the NHL. Babcock had seen them play against the University of Michigan, and he told Matthews, “You’re a good player, but you can’t let your talent make up for your work ethic.”

“It’s something that I’ve always remembered,” Matthews said.


Matthews grew up in Scottsdale, Ariz., and didn’t realize how good he was until he tried out for the NTDP and stood out against the best players of his age group in the United States. It gave him top coaching, top teammates, top competition and experiences like meeting Babcock.

It also gave a glimpse of his personality: humble but confident, calm but competitive, unaffected and unafraid, the kind of person who could play pro hockey in Switzerland at 18, play in the World Cup of Hockey 2016 before his NHL debut and star in Toronto without acting much like a star.

“I really enjoyed my time there, thought I learned a lot, really progressed as a player, as a person,” Matthews said. “Some of my closest friends kind of come from those two years.”

Matthews lived in a suburban subdivision with his billet family: Brian and Heidi Daniels, their sons Cole and Camden, and teammate Luke Opilka. He kept his room clean, brought down his own laundry, made his own breakfast and lunch. One day, the family brought home some mulch. He grabbed a shovel and helped spread it out.


“I’ve never met a more competitive kid,” said Camden Daniels, now 15. “If he lost, you weren’t going to hear the end of it for a couple days.”

But you wouldn’t hear much about ice hockey.

“Whenever we went out to dinner or anything and some of my friends would be with him … Everyone knew how good he was, and he would just play it off like it was nothing basically,” Camden Daniels said. “You would have never thought he was doing what he was doing.

I painted my nails today and thought of magic.
I thought: purple for the witching hour, for
the girl who peels off the hurts of the year
and steadies herself for the shift, the ending
that is already scuffling for a way to stay,
to spend another moment alive in our hearts.

I welcome December with a spell falling down
my lips, like water sprouting from the earth,
like the rumbling waves, like this is nature.
I try to remember if it was ever truly venom
that dripped from my tongue to the sea,
but I don’t think I know how to be that spiteful.

I should probably stop pretending to fight,
when I keep my hands clean, my words soft.
Every year I ask to bury rancor forever,
and every year I wake up to find their vines
cradling the old memories, netted through,
growing flowers in between the thorns.

I carry their colors on my fingers, chewed out,
of all the times I was not enough, when
these flaws, this bitten skin, were too much
of a weight on my back. I accept that the
polish will chip, that I will want to be kind
and fail; that this, too, is a type of magic.
—  Things to do when the sky clears out (LM)

I’ve been feeling really disorganized and gross lately, and I feel like my styles looking a bit too clean and polished and stiff. I feel really cluttered and lazy and unmotivated, but it happens. It’s come and gone before, so hopefully this’ll pass real soon. So to clean things up a bit, here’s some sketches I never really finished, or just little ones I didn’t feel like posting on their own.

Okay, so Percy would be annoyed if he got dragged into it, but Annabeth, like, she must just be going, “Honestly, if it wasn’t for me the world would have gone to hell, like, first with Kronos/Luke and Percy, then on the Argo, and now Magnus too? I might as well just help the gods stop making bad decisions too.”

about the rain

it’s raining and I can’t keep my mind clean, what should I do to forget all of those things?
the thunder is coming but then the sunlight, what could I do just to make you try?
love is game, happiness we all can find, but what if I couldn’t would you still be there for me to cry?
never really felt bad about it, it wasn’t even on my brain
and you thought our love would just happen in the rain?

Drabble: Missing Laundry

Spark doesn’t know when it started but it only sinks in when he’s down to his last pair of boxers and he means his very last pair. He’s rifling through his drawers and looking under piles of clothes and he could of sworn he did laundry just a few days ago. 

“Hey, guys!” He cries from his chaotic mess of a bedroom. Spark receives a grunt and a ‘Yes?’ From the kitchen. “Have you seen any of my boxers?” He runs a hand through his hair and stands up. The search had turned up nothing besides the really cool pepe shirt he got from Candela months ago and the earbud piece he thought he lost forever. 

 "How the hell would we know?“ Candela yells back. 

"Spark, you should keep track of your clean and dirty clothing. I’ve seen the tornado of a room you keep and I’m not surprised.” Calls out Blanche as he hopscotches over various piles of clean, unclean, and ambiguously still clean clothes. 

 "It’s not that bad,“ Spark mutters to himself. His foot catches on a backpack strap and he creates a spectacular windmill impression before falling anyways. Okay so it might be that bad. OH HEY that’s where incubator 57 went. 

 "If he’s only asking where his boxers are, maybe he’s been… up to something,” Candela suggests loudly. Spark’s face flushes. He scrabbles to the kitchen ready to defend himself when he sees Candela tapping away on her phone and Blanche reading the newspaper, sitting at the kitchen table- 

 in his missing boxers. 

Candela’s got on his favorite plusle and minun pair while Blanche has his vaporeon ones. “Guuuuuys,” he whines. “Gimme my boxers back, I’m down to my last pair!” He points accusingly at both of them. 

They look over at him and then down at themselves at the same time. “Ooh,” Candela voices for both of them. 

Blanche looks embarrassed but clears her throat with a sheepish smile. “I apologize, Spark. I’ll go search for any other pairs I have accidentally taken." 

"I’ll do that later,” Candela goes back to her phone. Spark sighs. 


 When it starts getting cold again during winter, Spark thanks the power of science that the egg incubators are nice and toasty because it it literally the only thing keeping him warm these days. All of his sweaters and jacket have been frequently disappearing and re-appearing in the wash, despite the fact that Spark didn’t ever get the chance to wear them enough to get in the wash in the first place. 

 He picks up a hoodie and sniffs it. It smells like warm, cinnamon-y stuff. Alright, so Candela’s been stealing again. 

He grabs another and presses it to his nose. It smells crisp and citrusy. So has Blanche. 

Spark dumps the rest of his dirty laundry into the wash and goes up stairs to confront them himself. In his mildly inconvenienced annoyance, he still knocks first before peeking his head into Candela’s room. She on her laptop with headphones on, bobbing to a beat. He marches in and throws open her closet door. He ignores her loud, startled swears and gives her a Look and points to the horde of his sweaters and hoodies piled in her closet. 

Candela puts her hands up slowly. Sparks doesn’t miss how she’s wearing the large sweater his aunt knitted for him last Christmas. “I can explain.” His eyebrows shoot up and his face is expectant, foot tapping. She sweats and visibly struggles to come up with an answer. “Uh alright, maybe I can’t explain.” She laughs nervously. He tackles her with a warrior cry and leaves her room with a victory grin, an armful of his clothes and possibly a bruised kidney but that’s okay, probably. 

Spark visits Blanche next and knocks on the door and waits for the curt 'Come in’. She’s typing something on her laptop as well and Spark pulls open her closet without a word. A lesser amount of his jackets are hanging in there’s than in Candela’s but it’s at least five. He didn’t even know he owned over five jackets up until recently. Spark turns around and Blanche waffles for an explanation with hand gestures and beginnings of sentences. She falls silent and coughs. “They’re very comfortable and they smell nice…” She trails off with an awkward smile. Spark sighs and takes all of his jackets back but leaves one hanging in her closet and gives her a Look as well. 

Spark thought that would be the end but it doesn’t stop. Not by a long shot.

The two gym leaders still squirrel away his clothing (just in smaller amounts) and it seems like it’s not limited to his boxers or hoodies anymore. It’s his shirts, his shorts, his jeans, almost everything besides his shoes (only because his feet are too large for either of them and neither of them seem to want to wear heelies for some reason). 

It’s one day, with Candela’s insistence, that he tries on Blanche’s lab coat. It’s super cool and makes him look Important. They take a lot of photos of him posing and looking Serious and Intelligent and giggle over the end result. After, as Spark stretches out- it is a very tight fit- they hear an ominous ripping noise. Spark freezes, arms extended out in front of him. They look at each other wide eyed and terrified. “Don’t tell Blanche,” he whispers. 

“I’m home.” Calls out a voice from the front door. “Oh no,” Candella whispers, equally terrified.

PKM GO drabble series: 1, 2

he wasn’t supposed to know [draft one]

I’ve started writing a little lucaya something but it’s not v good so far and there isn’t much plot (if this was a proper fanfic, maybe this would be first chapter?) anyway, check it out and please like if you liked it and think i should continue!

x lucaya-darling!

Lucas Friar liked to keep the hallways clean. He was a nice guy (a “moral compass”, he often thought, smiling to himself at the nickname) and if taking a few stray seconds to pick up a piece of litter meant helping the environment, he was more than happy to do it. At least, that was his excuse when he stumbled upon a sheet of paper, lying haphazardly on the linoleum. He would later explain that yes, of course he would’ve crumpled it up and thrown in it the trash, if only he hadn’t caught sight of his name scrawled across the refill. That was worth the double take, wasn’t it?

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