irish places

Emo Village is Real

I know pretty  much everyone on Irish Tumblr seems to have come across my post about the unintentionally scary Welcome to Kill Village sign but I’d like to bring to your attention that we also have Emo Village in Co. Laois, Ireland. I always wonder if tourists drive through there expecting everyone to be blaring MCR and only ending their texts in Rawr XD. The headlines about that place are hilarious.

Emo is also the name of a well known petrol station chain here but for some reason there are no Emo petrol stations actually in Emo.

My fave thing about the petrol stations is that their logo unintentionally kinda looks like those emo side fringes:

I think I might start a Tumblr series on funny place names here 

4

Sole Party - Day 6 - Shenanigans with companions!

I already drew all my faves in one of the other posts, so I wanted to include some of the others in this one. :)

PS: I know Strong has armor on his arms, but I was too lazy to draw it. :P Also, in case it was confusing, the Strong image is not related to the fight between Cait & MacCready. Just an extra doodle to include the big buy.

Is it not possible that a place could have a huge affection for those who dwell there? Perhaps your place loves having you there. It misses you when you are away and in its secret way rejoices when you return. Could it be possible that a landscape might have a deep friendship with you? That it could feel your presence and feel the care you extend towards it? Perhaps your favorite place feels proud of you …
—  John O’Donohue, from Beauty: The Invisible Embrace.
Flood my Mornings: Samhain

@abreathofsnowandashes said: There would have been A LOT of Irish emigrants in Boston in the 1950s, particularly Irish speakers.  There would have been Scots too, but in much smaller numbers and Gàidhlig would have been much less likely to have been spoken for obvious reasons. I’d love to see Jamie overhear Gaelic (Irish Gaeilge or Scottish Gàidhlig, he’d understand both) being spoken, or maybe come across a hurling/shinty game and make a connection


Notes from Mod Bonnie:

  • This story takes place in an AU in which Jamie travels through the stones two years after Culloden and finds Claire and his child in 1950 Boston.

October 31, 1950

“Happy Halloween,” chirruped the pimple-strewn lad pumping the Gasoline.

Jamie gave the boy a smile and a nod. “Aye, many thanks, and the same to—Bree, no!” He lunged across the wide seat of the Ford and grabbed her round the middle.  She protested and scrabbled vainly for the door latch she had very nearly gotten open. “My apologies,” he said out the open window as he righted himself, holding the lass firmly on his lap, “she’s quite the handful.”

The boy gave Brianna a little wave. “Got big trick-or-treating plans tonight?”

“Ach, no, not this year. Just a bonfire with some friends.”

Burgers, marshmallows, candy, and beer! Nothing fancy! Tom had assured him. Just bring you, the family, and maybe some ice? 

Jamie had left work an hour early to drive home, shower, change into clean clothes, and pick up Brianna to drive the two of them back to Fernacre for Tom and Marian’s gathering. Claire was working overnight, this evening, and Jamie was feeling just that wee bit awkward about the prospect of a social gathering without her at his side. Granted, he would know nearly everyone present; and they were his work comrades, after all; hardly strangers. 

Still, when the convenient topics and tasks of work were removed from his social scenarios, there would always come the odd moment where his ignorance of modern times or American tastes or both would be thrust into the spotlight (“What did you think of the game?” or “What’s your favorite John Wayne film?”) and it was Claire who so adeptly diverted attention so he might collect himself, even as he wracked his brain to recall where he had heard the name of Mr. Wayne before. 

Still, Claire had her duties, and a festive night shared among good folk (for whom he had genuine affection) certainly outweighed the other available option: being obliged to bide by the door all evening, passing out sweeties to any costumed child that cared to ring the bell. Would that strangers had been so generous when I was wandering Boston looking for Claire. Baffling, the lot of them, these Americans.  

“Whoops, I’m sorry, mister, I don’t have enough change,” the boy said apologetically. “Can you hold on a minute while I run inside?”

“Aye, dinna fash, lad.”

The boy blinked and made a face of incomprehension. “Dinner what?” Then, realizing how rude he sounded, he raised his hand, looking distraught and about to start babbling. 

“I only said,” Jamie interjected, “‘Take your time.’”

He said it patiently, wanting to be kind, but as soon as the boy was out of sight, Jamie closed his eyes and felt himself sighing, wearily practicing the proper phrases in his mind for the next such time. ‘No problem, man.’ ‘Don’t worry about it, Sport.’ Flatter “R”s. Shove sound to the back of the tongue. Quieter. Less.

We c’n go-to play th’game, too, Da?” Brianna asked suddenly in Gaelic. 

“Game?” He blinked his eyes open and studied her face, looking up from his lap excitedly. “What game d’ye wish to—”?

But then he, too, heard the voices drifting across the lot.

“Oh, definitely: Dan’s crew don’t have a chance.”

“I don’t know, they’ve been training hard—and they’re giving Michael and the boys a run for their money, so far!”

He craned his neck out the window. They were men of about his own age or a little older, their arms loaded with sweeties and Soda Pop bottles from the wee store. And they were speaking GAELIC. 

Irish, from the sound of it, the Gaeilge; but the cadence and syllables were so like his own mother tongue that he actually was gasping from the rush of shock and euphoria.  

He was just about to call after them, but at that moment, the young attendant reappeared. Jamie hastily completed the transaction, tipping a bit too heavily as he watched the men out of the corner of his eye, feeling a pang of dismay as they disappeared down over the hill beside the filling station. Jamie thought he could hear the sounds of a small crowd not far off. 

“Beg your pardon,” Jamie blurted, as the attendant was walking away. “What’s going on over the hill, there?”

“Just a bunch of Irish playing—it’s kind of like football, but with sticks and they’re loud as all get out!” he laughed confidentially. 

Game, Da!” Bree whispered in Gaelic.

“They’re harmless, though, I promise,” the boy said hastily, leaving Jamie to wonder what exactly might be feared from a bunch of Irishmen. The boy blanched. “Oh but you’re–you’re Irish youself. I didn’t mean any–” He didn’t bother to correct the boy as to his heritage, simply thanked him once more and sent him on his way. 

He checked his Watch, and finding that they were still ahead of schedule, he set Bree on the seat next to him, saying in Gaelic, “Aye, a leannan, let’s DO go see the game.”


It was a group of about thirty men on the field, playing a fast-paced game that Jamie wagered was very close indeed to shinty.  The players’ wives and families (and a fair number more, it seemed) were congregated on the sidelines, tending wee coal-grills, drinking, chatting, and calling after the swarms of children running about hither and thither. And all of it was in Gaelic. Jamie wanted to cry, just hearing and seeing this slice of something so like home, the drink-fueled joy of a Gathering, something he hadn’t experienced in many, many years. He could feel the warmth of it all surrounding him with every step he took closer, like the arms of a long-lost friend slowly coming around him. 

As he and Bree drew within a few dozen yards, a whistle sounded and the match broke. The players jogged to their wives and comrades to drink and chat. One man on the nearest edge of the crowd, dark-haired and wiry, caught sight of Jamie and did a double-take, turning sharply to face him in the first pink rays of nearing-sunset. “Can I help you?” he called in English, strongly accented; not unkindly, but definitely on guard.

Jamie called back a greeting in as close to Gaeilge as he could recall, though he wasn’t at all confident in his pronunciation.

It must have been close enough, though, for the man’s face brightened at once. “HEY, NOW!” he roared, walking forward with his arms raised in welcome. “A new kinsman! What county?”

County *Scotland,* I’m afraid,” Jamie replied, slipping into the Gàidhlig without thinking as he returned the man’s warm handshake. “James Fraser, and my daughter Brianna. Do forgive me for intruding; it’s only that it’s been so verra long since I heard anything like my own tongue. I just couldna resist seeing what was what.”

And we’re glad you did! It’s grand to get to meet a new cousin from the old places.”

The Irish tongue did have its differences, certainly, but Michael Riley seemed to have no trouble understanding Jamie, nor he, him, with only the occasional What was that word? or confidential laugh over differences in emphasis or tone. 

Bree had been staring at Michael intently, apparently astonished at hearing Gaelic spoken at close range by someone other than her Da. When Jamie nudged her, she gave a tiny, startled ‘Hi’ in English, then grinned and buried her face in his shoulder, making both men laugh.

D’ye live in these parts yourself, Fraser?” Michael asked eagerly. 

Not far, but no—I was just stopping for Gasoline on my way out to the countryside. Do all of ye live nearby, then?” Jamie asked, astonished, surveying the huge, lively crowd of players and onlookers. 

Sure do—the station owner turns a blind eye to us using the field, thank the saints, else we’d all likely be arrested.” 

“Arrested? For playing a wee game?” 

Well, technically, it *could* be considered trespassing—have a drink?” Jamie politely refused and Michael shrugged, wiping his sweaty brow and taking a deep swig from his own bottle. “There’s a long history of bad blood between Irish and the other folk in Boston. I’m sure there’s plenty of arseholes that would love to see us get comeuppance for whichever dumb mick offended great-great-uncle so and so.” 

Perhaps that went some way toward explaining the odd looks Jamie tended to get when speaking to strangers about Boston. He’d always tacitly assumed something in his manner was out of place in some indeterminate way—some eighteenth-century way, that is—but perhaps it was that he was being assumed Irish in a place where that wasn’t altogether a pretty thing to be. He would have to ask Claire. 

Christ, he chuckled to himself, an Outlander thrice over, he was, in Boston. At least he wasn’t the only one.

Michael introduced him to the members of his team, one and all bringing Jamie and Bree further into the crowd, offering drinks, and asking about their history and family. He felt as if he’d walked into a clan gathering, even after only ten minutes among the Irish. “And what about you, then?” he asked of Michael, after giving his (presumed) backstory for the half-dozenth time, “From whence in Ireland do you folk hail?”

“Well, we’re mostly Corkmen here—” Michael said, which elicited cheers from the Cork contingent. “Some like me, born here stateside, but plenty of folk fresh off the boat, like Barny, there, except he’s from Tipperary. Then there’s Fergal whose folk are from Sligo,” he said, scanning the crowd and methodically cataloging. “Then Vance and Peter and the other Michael, of Galway. And then over there, there’s Charlie, but he’s not—OY!” He gave a sudden whoop of excitement and cupped his hands around his mouth to yell, “EY, CHARLIE!! COME OVER HERE!! FOUND YE A WEE CLANSMAN!!

A stocky blonde man jogged over eagerly and Michael clapped him on the shoulder. “Charlie, here, plays for those bastards on Dan’s team, but we won’t hold it against him just at present. Charlie, this is James—James, right? Aye, good—James Fraser. He’s from your precious highlands!

Charlie was an open, eager sort, ruddy-faced and jovial, quick with a joke and an easy word. Jamie quickly learned from rapid conversation in the Gàidhlig that the man was a Highlander-born, a MacAlister whose family had come to America when he was nearly sixteen. He’d hated the new place, and had planned to return to Scotland the moment as he was of age; but then war had broken out just days before his eighteenth birthday, and he’d been compelled to go fight. He worked as a builder, now, feeding the demand for suburban homes from families in the growing prosperity of the post-war times. Jamie decided he truly liked the man, and knew without asking that he must have children himself, when he grinned at Bree and said, “And hello there, a leannan,” with a little bow. 

Hi, how-wer you?” she responded, to Jamie’s astonishment, in almost-perfect Gàidhlig. 

I’m verra well, thank ye verra much for asking, sweet lass,” the blonde man laughed, straightening and looking impressed. “Does she speak it at home, then?

“No, not often,” Jamie said, rather apologetically. “I do try to speak it around her when I think of it, but her mam is English, so we—

“American, you mean?”

“Nay,” Jamie laughed, with a mock-sneer, “an honest-to-goodness Sassenach.”

Charlie matched Jamie’s manner with groan of false-disgust. “Christ, but ye must have balls of steel, Jamie, to  oh!” he said abruptly, looking a bit embarrassed, “Sorry—is it alright that I call ye Jamie?”

Jamie could feel the warmth of kinship flood through him like water. “Of *course,* friend,” he said with feeling. 

Charlie introduced his Irish wife Saoirse and their two small boys, to whom Bree took at once, sharing their toys on the grass.

They talked about Scotland, about America, about Boston. About Gaelic. About talk of a free and independent Scotland. About the Celtic traditions that had crossed the ocean, and those that had not. Of gatherings that apparently took place all around the country, in hill-and-mountain places, for folk to remember the old clan ways, even if in naught but a faint imitation. Even of bannocks, whiskey, and wool; the simple things of highland home, even two hundred years hence, it seemed. It was more a balm to Jamie’s heart than he could comprehend: that the Scotland he knew hadn’t vanished entirely. 

A whistle blew and Charlie brandished his stick deftly as the crowd began to shift. “Ever played a game of hurling?” 

“It’s like shinty, no?”

“Not too far off, not at all. Here,” he said, beginning to walk backward toward the pitch, “come wi’ me and I’ll give ye the rundown.”

With a jolt, Jamie noted the position of the sun and remembered the ice in the back of the Car. “Sadly, we must be going, Charlie.”

Oh, come on!” Charlie wheedled, taking one last deep swig of beer and kissing Saoirse exuberantly. “Wee Brianna seems to be having a fine time wi’ Nolan and Will. And I’ve got some extra gear if —”

“it isna that at all,Jamie said, turning an apologetic smile toward his new companion, “it’s only that we’ve got a Halloween gathering to attend, and we’re expected shortly.”

“Och, that’s too bad. First one since you arrived? Weel, it isna nearly so ghostly as Samhain, let me tell ye. All the spooks you’re like to encounter look as if they came out from a children’s book or a Walt Disney film. I tell wee Nolan when he’s scairt in the night that all the ghosts are back in Scotland. No doorways to the otherworlds in America, so no Old Folk to be afraid of.“

(Oh, aye? Ye have one right in front of ye, man.)

Charlie held out the stick once more, inviting. "Sure ye canna be persuaded to celebrate wi’ us instead, Jamie?”

“I truly canna stay, but thank ye, Charlie, I should verra much have liked to.” Jamie knelt to break up the play-circle. “Can ye say ‘farewell’ to your new friends, Bree?” 

Farewell,” she chirped, waving her chubby hand enthusiastically.

That’s not’th’right way,” chided Nolan, who was a year or two older. “You say it funny.” 

Bree looked crestfallen, but Charlie ruffled his son’s hair, laughing as he gently scolded. “Nay, a chuisle, you’ve just grown up wi’ Gaeilge—YOU’RE the one who ‘says it funny.’” 

Jamie scooped Bree into his arms, whispering in her ear about how proud he was of her before turning back to Charlie. “Do ye play every week, then? I’d truly be honored to come back another time.”

“Oh aye. The winter snows will start falling soon, but we’re here most every chance we can get, when the ground’s clear.” Charlie sized him up frankly, nodding with approval. “You’re a braw-looking fucker, alright. Dinna let Michael steal ye for his lousy crew, aye? They’re naught but loud bastards. The *real* talent’s wi’ us.” 

Jamie made a general farewell to the crowd and received a hearty chorus of well-wishes and toasts in return. 

At the risk of seeming too eager, Jamie…” He turned to see that Charlie was looking sheepish, “might the wife and I have ye and the family over for dinner, sometime?” 

When Jamie didn’t immediately respond, the man shrugged, but didn’t falter. “Mebbe it’s daft, but as much as I love my Irish folk, it’s grand having someone to talk to in the old ways again; who’s truly my countryman. D’ye ken what I mean?”

Jamie swallowed down the lump in his throat as he clasped the man’s hand. “Aye, a caraidh, I ken it more than ye can possibly know.”


Keep reading

anonymous asked:

I'm in a great deal of pain. Only my sister agrees wit me that Galway Girl is an fucking awful song that has been created in the depths of hell. I need more people to hate the song. I want it all burned to cinders. I can't take it anymore.

I listened to it, got as far as “I met her on Grafton Street” and then I was done. The lyrics feel like ”here’s a bunch of Irish places and shit let’s make them fit this song somehow”

pt 3

[WARNING: PEER PRESSURE, BULLYING, FIGHTING, INTENDED NON CON, AND OTHER POSSIBLY TRIGGERING SUBJECTS. PLEASE PROCEED WITH CAUTION. (Also, sorry it took so long to get out, I forgot I was writing it)]

Felix pulled away with a large sigh as he unwrapped his arms from Sean,

“D'you forgive me?”

The blond nodded a little, feeling incredibly exposed with his face red and puffy, he looked at his and Sean’s shoes, avoiding eye contact. This was all insanely new to Felix. He didn’t show emotion. Ever. And if he did, it was only ever in church, to show his happiest praises to God. Everything else was supposed to be suppressed. It was what Felix was taught, and shown, and firmly scolded for whenever he forgot to suck up his tears, or keep a lid on his anger.

But now, the sniffling swede had let go of this momentarily. He had burst into big tears and sobbed quietly on Sean’s neck and shoulder as he embraced the other.

“I’m sorry,” Sean grabbed Fe’s chin and made him look up, dragging him close again. “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean all of that..”

Looking into this boy’s black lined eyes so close up was notable for Felix, to say the least. He felt so strange looking up at Sean, being touched so..gently, by him. Looking at this punk boy, you’d'nt guess in a million years that he’d be this soft with someone-anyone-especcially not a small church boy who he’d only first spoken to less than an hour and a half ago.

Sean’s thumb swiped over Fe’s cheek, drying the wet streaks that trailed the kid’s face.

“I was just a little upset. Not at you, just at the fact that you’re so-” Sean’s fingers pressed into Fe’s chin roughly for a moment,the irish boy looked out of focus, his eyebrows scrunching.

This boy was so close to him now.. Felix squirmed slightly, an uncomfortable burning feeling growing in his belly. Felix’s sweater vest was ruffling at the edges from Sean’s contact to it, and Felix wanted to pull away again, or get this weird feeling out of his belly, or quiet the aching in his hands to clench them as he began to notice how unkempt he was. He wanted to straighten himself again. Push down that stray hair he could feel tickling against his forhead, or the misplaced crease in his khakis. He wanted to pull away, away from this upperclassman, and walk home. Felix just wanted to feel okay, but how could he if he was so overwhelmingly near this kid? While at the same time, being so comtempt as he studied this kid’s features while their bodies touched. It felt strange to consider himself calm as fingers pressed harder into his skin by this senior. This secular boy, with his green hair, and his dark peircings, and his tight fitting clothes, and fingers digging into Fe’s cheeks a little too hard. But somehow, he was..

“Ow, Sean-“ Fe mumbled, scrunching his brows together. “Can you-”

Sean seemed to focus again and cleared his throat, immediately letting go of Fe’s face and pushing himself away subtly.

“Sorry.”

Felix rubbed at the spots the punk boy’s fingers had pressed into, frowning slightly as he stepped back as well.

“I accept your apology.” He mumbled, taking a deep breath as the tight chested feeling of crying left him fully.

“Look, I still wanted to..” Sean sighed and cleared his throat again as he straightened up, putting his hands in his pockets. “Y'know. Whatever.”

“Afraid I don’t.” Fe responded, studying Sean’s stance, which portrayed that he was uncomfortable. Felix noted it as strange. Sean, the non chalant, unimpressible, seemingly unemotional kid in the entire school, was uncomfortable?

It was incredible to witness first hand such nurturing behavior Felix had just a minute ago, and this just added to it!

“Well, before your little breakdown, ” Sean shifted from one foot to the other as he looked down at the leaves littering the woods floor. “I was supposed to be taking you to this place,”

“A ‘demonic mating ritual.’, if i remember correctly?” Felix let his hands slide down, crossing his arms as he continued to eye the senior.

“Right. That.” Sean looked up at Felix, smirking ever so slightly, a small exhale rather than a full laugh escaping his lips.

The swedish kid’s heart felt as though it had jumped to his throat, a wave of cold spreading through his belly. He looked down as quickly as they had made eye contact.

Felix had never been very good with eye contact.. He’d always been scolded for it, by his mother, or by a church gaurdian. ‘Only liars don’t look people in the eyes.’ Or, ‘Don’t you realize how rude that is?’ Or ‘Give full attention, or none at all.’

Felix was never very good with telling the truth at times, but he wasn’t a liar. He was obediant.

Felix was never very good at being respectful either, but he never tried purposefully to be rude. He was obediant.

Felix had also never had a very good attention span either, to be truthful. Whenever he sat still, his bones ached, and his muscles went weird, and he had to move, or else those things would get too intense for him to handle. He was always at least slightly stressed out, but only because he always tried so hard to be attentive. Because he was obediant.

His whole life was obediance. He was taught it since forever, and it was all he knew. And to be disobediant-or rebellious-like this..this sinner which stood a few feet across from him- was -lord forgive him-God awful and damned to be.

And now Felix- the obediant, church going schoolboy-who listened to his mother and father with every sense of his being-who sat through 3 hours of bible study, and church time, and worship, and sunday schools- who was taught to never question anything-dare he be tempted by the devil himself and stray from the Holy Lord-was standing right next to one of the devil’s workers.

And he was discussing things like orgasms, and heresy in the church, and emotions, and shacks in the middle of the woods, and urges, and demonic *mating* rituals-whatever that meant.

What was he doing? Why was he even here? Why had Felix come here, with this secular upperclassman especcially? He shouldn’t be here, and he knew it. He’d just had a ‘breakdown’ -as Sean had put it- over this exact situation! And yet, he was still here, with Sean. Why?

“Felix, jesus fucking christ, snap the fuck out of it dude.”

Felix let out a breath he didnt realize he’d been holding. He swallowed down a cringe that threatened to creep theough his limbs as he heard so many filthy slurs come out of this kid’s mouth.

“How often do you do that shit?”

“Excuse me..?” Felix clenched his teeth and ground them together. This boy seemed to never stop.

“That thing-that weird, like, zone out thing.” Sean gestured toward Felix with a wave of his hand, a scowl on his face as though he’d been embarrassed.

“I..” Felix scrunched his brow, darting his eyes up here and there to make sure Sean wasn’t angry at him. “I’m not sure. I didn’t realize I was doing it. Sorry.”

“Gah, and that too!” The green haired kid rolled his eyes, sighing. “You always apologize. Why do you do that?”

“I-I’m- ” Fe pressed his nails into his bicep slightly, trying not to flinch at the harshly annoyed tone in Sean’s voice. “I don’t know.”

“Don’t you know anything about yourself, kid?” Sean scoffed with a slight smile, grabbing Fe’s sleeve with a yank, a quick shove to Fe’s shoulder to make him start walking again.

Fe’s eyes stayed to the ground, studying the roots they walked past, trying to distract himself from the ruffled feeling of his now stretched out sweater sleeve, or the heat from Sean’s palm gathered at his shoulder blade.

“Are we going to..”

“Speak up,” Sean sneered slightly, not looking away from his eyes on the path they were travelling down. “You’re mumbling.”

“Um, ” Felix cleared his throat a little, his voice cracking slightly. “What’s this place like?”

“What?”

“The-um..the demonic..mating thing..”

Sean huffed out a chuckle, his teeth apparent from his wide grin.

“It’s not actually demonic, dude.”

“Oh,” Felix sighed, or let out a breath close to a sigh as he could get, being that he was becoming out of breath from their trekking already. “Well, what is it then?”

Sean glanced at Fe half heartedly, casually studying the swedish kid’s face. He smirked a little, turning his head to focus on not tripping over a tendril splayed across the path.

“It’s a party.” He stated, a small grin on his face. “You ever been to a party?”

“Do birthday parties count?” Felix asked innocently.

Sean rolled his eyes, his grin growing a bit. “Dunno why I asked.”

Felix examined the kid’s teeth, noting that they were fairly white, and sharp. His canines were long, and distinctive, nearly hooking over Sean’s bottom lip as he smiled.

“Who all will be attending the party?” Fe quizzed half mindedly, studying the rest of the green haired kid’s face.

“Shouldn’t be too many people there since it’s Pj’s place .” The irish kid shrugged non chalantly. “A few kids from all over the school. He doesn’t really like everybody in his house.”

“What about the football team..?”

“Like…the whole team?”

Felix shrugged, his heart quickening slightly at the thought of some of his bullies attending.

“Maybe.”

Sean looked over at Fe quickly, seemingly aware of Fe’s sudden change to quiet demeanour.

“Maybe not, though- I don’t know. It’s just a few kids from around the school, like I said.” His grip on Felix’s shoulder tightened.

Fe looked up gratefully for the grounding touch. He was getting that feeling in his belly again.. The posibility of any person from the football team being in the same place as Felix was unnerving. Vague memories of toilet water entered Fe’s mind, and he scowled.

“Don’t worry about it,” Sean glanced at the blond again, his hand squeezing firmly, a soft, closed mouth smile on his face.

Fe sighed, focusing back on the ground, his fingers figeting with the hem of his shirt.


They reached a road by late evening, the sun well past the ridge of the sky. They’d gone down a quiet block, only a few dim street lamps lighting the broken asphalt. Felix looked to his left, then to his right, searching for a house that seemed party deemable.

“Here.”

This is it?”

They stood in the yard of a fairly quiet, two story house, a few lights on in the second floor.

“Yeah.”

Felix shook his head slightly, letting out a breath.

“What?” Sean huffed out amusedly.

“I just..” Felix began, his eyes scrunched loosely as he continued to eye the building. “I thought it’d be louder. Or at least more, eh..”

“Party-lookin’?”

“I guess so.” Felix shrugged, grabbing hold of Sean’s shirt as they stepped up to the door.

The punk boy knocked on the door firmly, stepping back as a bit of shuffling was heard on the other side.

Fe’s clutch on Sean tightened as the door opened slowly. He warily eyed a tall kid in the frame. He was lanky, and slender, with skinny jeans and brunette curly hair.

“Sup,” The kid nodded at Sean, leaning against the frame of the door, blocking it casually.

“Let us in, Pj.” Sean rolled his eyes.

“Us?” Pj raised a brow, his eyes scanning Fe.

“Yeah. Us.” Sean tapped his foot.

“You know the password?” Pj teased with a smirk, winking at the blond clinging to Sean stiffly.

“Fuck off,” Sean pushed past the tall brunette, Fe shuffling past as well.

There were barely any people on this level of the house. One or two girls in shorts or skirts sat on the couches with red plastic cups in their hands, chatting to each other quietly. A stray drunken boy, who looked barely past 15, stumbled out of the kitchen, his shirt soaked with a mystery liquid.

“Where is everyone?” Fe whispered as Sean led them through the kitchen.

“Downstairs.” Sean muttered back, grabbing a cup off a counter and passing it to Fe.

“Uhm..” Fe pushed the cup away hesitantly, his heart going to his throat. He hated refusing things from people. He didn’t want to be rude, especially not to Sean, but intoxication was against Fe’s beliefs. He was taught not to ever drink anything alchoholic. And so he wouldn’t.

“Go ahead, give it a try.” Sean pushed the cup toward him again, a slim smirk on his face. “Won’t hurt ya any.”

Fe shook his head, turning his face away as he bit at his lip nervously.

“Fine,” Sean shrugged, taking the cup to his lips. Fe watched as his adams apple moved down his throat, wondering how he could take it all down so easily. Fe had always been told alchohol burned the throat and tongue, and was bitter tasting. It made him curious, but not curious enough to take any himself.

“How about some water then?” Sean walked over to a sink as Fe stayed at the counter, turning on the tap and filling the cup.

“I’m fine, thank you.”

“You gotta loosen up a bit,” Sean smirked, leaving the cup in the sink and walking back over to Felix. He wrapped an arm around Fe’s waist and led him to a door through the kitchen. He opened it and Fe’s eyes widened. He was staring into nothingness, a few dim yellow rays from the kitchen shown down on steep steps that led down to total black. How was he supposed to go down there if he couldn’t see his own feet?

“There’s a rail on your side.” Sean nodded, and Fe reached out carefully in the dark, feeling at the cold wall for something. He located it and slowly descended the steps, Sean stabilizing him, closing the door behind them, leaving them in darkness.

As Fe’s eyes adjusted, he realised it wasn’t pitch black down here after all. There was a few dim glowing lava lamps, each of different colours, set on small tables around the room. Some were florescenly lit, some purple, or bright red, or dull blue. The lamps were hypnotic to look at, and Fe watched intently as thick liquids floated lazily around in their containers as Sean and him walked past them.

Fe realised there were people down here as well, quietly talking to each other, or sitting next to each other with smoking things in their fingers, some mouth to mouth, or on each others laps even. Some sat on the floor next to the lava lamps, their half lidded eyes sluggishly following the liquids in them, the glowing light from the lamps highlighting their faces softly.

There was a quiet tune of music, slow and smooth and seductive, something Felix would imagine the colour red would sound like. Some people were near the walls, in each other’s arms, or grinding on one another, and others lay like ragdolls on large black bean bags in the middle of the large room. The air was fairly muggy, and the longer Fe’s eyes adjusted to the dim lighting-or lack of-, he could partially make out trails of smoke floating near the floor.

“What is this place?” Fe whispered, chewing his lip as he walked slowly past two girls splayed out on a rug, giggling softly to each other.

“The basement.”

“Why are there lava lamps in the basement? My basement doesn’t look like this.”

“Your basement is also probably a praying room.” Sean scoffed as he stepped over a plug for a lamp that trailed the ground.

“That’s in the attic, actually.” Felix responded, looking back as he nearly tripped over a stray shoe.

“Why do you have a praying room in your house at all,” Sean muttered, not really in the form of a question.

“Mom doesn’t like to drive,” Felix decided to explain anyway. “The church is kinda far from the house, and mom doesn’t like feeling far away from God..”

Felix trailed off quietly as Sean stopped near a lamp in the corner of the basement, looking around the room slowly.

“The hell is he..?” The green haired kid muttered.

Felix kept his mouth shut. Whoever Sean was looking for was none of Fe’s business. Hopefully.

“I’ll be right back,” Sean muttered, letting go of Fe’s waist. Felix’s heart quickened again, hesitantly letting go of Sean’s shirt as he walked back through the room, weaving around black shapes of people on the floor, then back up the stairs.

Felix felt awkward just standing there by himself. He was in a house he’d never been to, with people he’d never talked to, at a time he couldn’t dream he’d ever been out on. Better yet, he’d come with someone his parents would never let him associate himself with. All of this was insane to begin with, and standing in a dark basement with young adults out of their minds high or drunk, was just adding to the feeling.

Fe scooted back into the corner a little more, which put the prey feeling at ease a bit. He felt like anyone could just turn into a demon in this darkness, without a thought from Felix, and he’d'nt even know. And suddenly he’d be face to face with a demon in the dark, and he’d probably get possessed, and dragged to the pits of Hades. And his parents would be nonethewiser…

A rough hand hitting between Fe’s shoulderblades pushed the swede out of his mess of thoughts, and he jumped in suprise.

A stumpy kid stood next to him, and two others at his side. The kid was muscular, Fe would even use the word buff, and olive coloured. He was short, barely Fe’s height, but taller than Sean, with fluffy black hair and a somber look on his face.

“Come here often?” He muttered with a smirk.

Felix felt his blood go cold as soon as he heard the kid’s voice.

How hadn’t he realised? Why was he touching him? Why was he here to begin with?

This was Mark. A member of the football team. Felix absolutely dreaded him, and for good reason. This kid had been the opitimy of terror since the beginning of middle school for Felix, and any time he even heard his name, dread filled him.

Memories of Fe’s head being shoved into toilets, and stuffed into lockers for hours, and randomly punched for only the good Lord knows why filled his head.

Why was he touching him? Mark hated him. Didnt he? But.. why was he smiling right in front of Fe’s face, if he hated him? Why was his hand touching him? Why was he even here at this party?

“Don’t look so happy to see me,” The kid laughed quietly, his hand squeezing firmly at Fe’s shoulder now. The two boys next to him looked on with smug faces, their hands folded across their chests.

“Have you met these guys?” Mark asked with a smile, lookiny back at them. He pushed Fe in front of them forcefully.

Felix’s body was screaming. His bully’s hands were on him, and he was surrounded in darkness, and the smell of drugs and fermented alchohol, and moist teenage bodies. He didn’t need to imagine a devil coming from the darkness. He was staring two of them right in the face.

“The tall one’s Tyler,” Mark muttered in Fe’s ear, his tone deep and quiet. “Say hi to him?”

Mark’s fingers dug into Fe’s back after a moment of silence from the swede, and Fe reluctantly mewed out a non enthusiastic ‘hello’, his eyes bearing straight into the ground.

The tall kid didn’t acknoledge Fes greeting, only sighed slightly as he rested his shoulder against the basement wall.

“He’s not much of a talker,” Mark explained with a grin. “This little ball of energy is though.”

He had pointed at the much shorter kid in front of Fe, standing slightly awkward.

Before the kid could get out a word, Mark turned Fe’s stiff body back toward him, smiling again.

“Who would have thought it?” He laughed a little. “A christian boy like you, at a party like this? What’re the odds!”

Felix bit his lip in concentration, continuing to look at the ground.

“Honestly, I would’ve thought you’d be asleep in your crib by now,” The buff kid smirked, looking Fe up and down.

The boys behind them snickered at the insult.

“So what brings you here, babe?” Mark asked with a smug look at his fingers. “It’s kinda hard to get into a Pj party if you don’t know the guy..”

Fe kept his mouth shut, chewing on his tongue as his eyes began to water slightly. He already knew where this was going. This was the most normal conversation Mark had ever had with Felix, but the swede knew he’d mess it up and tick Mark off somehow. And ticking off Mark always led to Fe coming home with bruises he couldn’t explain to his mother.

“You don’t know him, do you?“ Mark pressed on, his voice becoming slightly gruffer as he looked up from his nails

The only sounds in the large basement was the same sensual music playing, a few quiet slurry murmurs here and there. Everything felt so sluggish. Everything looked so dim. It all felt bad. Standing in front of his abuser was bad. Coming here at all was bad. Coming here with Sean had been bad.

Sean. Where was he? Where had he gone? He said he’d be right back, but he wasn’t. He wasn’t here to protect Felix, or sheild him, or get him out of this situation the swede didn’t even want to be in. He’d left him alone, in the lowest part of a house he’d never seen before, where his screams probably couldn’t even be heard in the streets of the abandoned looking neighborhood it was built on. Someone could just snatch him down here, and punch him down here, and hurt him down here. And now hands were on him. Mark’s hands. And they were trapping him down here, and holding him so roughly, and the room was so muggy, and everything was suddenly so dark and strange to Felix.

“Let go please,” Fe slurred as he put his hands on Mark’s weakly. “I’m not comfortable with your hands touching me.”

His arms felt like jelly compared to Mark’s.

“Aw, you guys hear that?“ Mark snickered, gripping at Fe harder, his hand sliding down to the small of Fe’s back. “He said he’s not comfortable!” The short kid mocked, his tone whiny. “You wanna get comfy, babe?”

“I’m serious.” Fe stated, his voice breaking as Mark pushed him toward a door in the basement’s wall.

“Oh-of course!” Mark grinned evily as Tyler opened the door slowly. “Your comfort is high priority to us!

“Didn’t Pj say this was his mom’s room..?” Asked the smaller kid as Mark slightly shoved Felix into the dark room.

“Okay, first of all.” Mark stopped, turning back to look at the kid. “Why the fuck would Pj’s mom sleep in the basement.”

The shorter kid shrugged, looking a bit uncomfortably up at Tyler, who shrugged back at him as he closed the door behind them.

“Secondly,” Mark turned back with a roll of his eyes.“No. And this is obviously a laundry room. Turn on the damn light.”

Tyler flicked the light on and Fe squinted hard, covering his face from the sudden shift of lighting. It was very dim, probably hadn’t been changed for months, and it flickered now and again, but it was still bright enough to hurt his eyes.

“You comfy now?” Mark teased.

“No, Mark..” Felix peeped out as he looked at the floor, trying to hold his shaking breath. He shuffled away from the others slowly. “Can you please let me out..”

“He’s not comfy!” Mark scoffed and threw his hands up exasperatedly. Then turning back to the other boys, he smirked, “Let’s make him comfy, huh?”

And suddenly Felix was shoved down onto a large pile of clothes, and he yelped. Hands were on him, pulling at his hair, and his clothes, and his skin, and everything was going so fast for him, he couldn’t keep up.

“Guys, ow-hey!” Felix tried to keep up, pushing away the large hands grasping at him. Someone had gotten his sweater off. Another had his pants unzipped. Everything was wurring by, yet at the same time, it was all sluggish. “Please-you’re hurting me-”

“Oh, guys-” Mark suddenly stepped back, his eyes innocent. “We’re hurting him.”

Tyler scoffed in frustration, the other kid also laughing to himself.

“We should be gentle, right guys?” Mark pouted, reaching over to Felix and softly carressing his cheek. “We don’t wanna make the lil baby uncomfortable.” He pinched Fe’s cheek hard, and shook, snearing at the swede in annoyance.

Fe shoved Mark’s hand away, kicking the buff kid in the belly.

And then the pain from Fe’s cheek was forgotten-or replaced- by a punch to the face that left him reeling.

He struggled to push himself off the ground, but the pile of clothes were unstable, and sunk in at any pressure applied to it. The others pushed him back down roughly, a smack landed on his face, and his head went fuzzy. He fought at the arms around him, and bit, and tears were suddenly streaming down his cheeks and he was sobbing as the boys ripped ferociously at his white button down open, the buttons flying off easily.

Felix tried desperately to get the others off of him, kicking and panting and scratching at anything and everything he could reach that felt like flesh. But after every hit or scratch he scored, another smack to the face, or punch, or shove landed on him and left him feeling weaker and weaker.

A knock at the door shifted Tyler and the smaller boy’s attention, and Mark stilled his hands a moment, turning to Tyler.

“You locked the door, right?”

“Yeah.”

“Occupado,” Mark called out with a tinge of annoyance. Felix, still panting, whimpered out slightly, but Mark’s hand went over his mouth and nose firmly.

A bang at the door startled the boys and they all jumped again as another one shook the frame slightly.

“There’s people in here!” The small kid announced.

Felix felt light headed. He couldn’t breathe.

Another bang at the door, and Tyler looked back at Mark in concern.

Felix nailed at Mark’s arm, hitting at it with his palm weakly. He couldn’t breathe.

Tyler shuffled to the door after another bang, this time the door made a cracking sound.

“What the fuck?” Mark growled angrily, cuffing Felix in the head as he continued to eye the door.

Bang!

Felix’s lungs felt on fire. He scratched harder, tears rolling down his face as his vision began to blur.

Bang! The frame was buckling and splintering.

“Who the fuck is that?!” Mark pressed harder against Felix’s face, looking from Tyler, to the other kid in the room.

Bang!

Fe felt his strength leaving him now, his vision darkening, eyelids feeling heavy.

BANG!

“I-I-I don’t know! I-I don’t-” Tyler spit out in panic, reaching for the handle on the door.

BANG!

“Fucking figure it out, then!” Mark barked, anger in his voice.

As Felix’s field of view was covered with silver glowing specks, the sound of wood breaking filled the his ears. “YOU GET THE FUCK OFF HIM!” Muffled screams and yelling could be heard in the background, and Fe felt the pressure on his face leave him, lots of commotion going on around him. He took a breath, gasping instinctively, pain in his lungs.

“STAY THE FUCK AWAY FROM HIM!”

Felix saw a blurry, unfocused blur of green and black in the room, the shape knocking into a larger shape at the door. “I’LL KILL YOU! I’LL FUCKING KILL ALL OF YOU!” The shape then tackled another shorter one dark blur as the smallest shape whisked out the door.

“HOW FUCKING DARE YOU!”

Felix recognised the accented voice across the room, his head and limbs feeling incredibly heavy. His eyes closed, vision being consumed by darkness, and he sighed as he felt himself drift off into sleep.

Blarney House | Blarney, Ireland
(Photo by Molly Renee)

This lovely house takes up residence on the grounds of Blarney Castle in County Cork, Ireland.  You can see it from the top of the castle, where the blarney stone is found, and you can find it by exploring the beautiful, expansive gardens.  Unfortunately, this building is only open during the “tourist season” so I was not allowed to study the mysterious interiors.  I imagine them to be just as glorious as the exterior.