it's long and slow but it's beautiful

8 Facts About Nebulae

1. Nebulae are a mixture of the gases hydrogen and helium, as well as dust and plasma.

2. The beautiful pictures of nebulae that the Hubble telescope beams down are actually three different channels of black and white, which are mixed and painted by scientists to produce the vibrant colors we see in magazines and on television. (The layers are painted according to the composition of the different gasses within the specific nebula.)

3. The word nebula means “cloud” in Latin; indeed, nebulae are space. Variously, the meaning has also been given to mean “mist”; it’s fitting, because their varying appearances sometimes do look like a cloud of mist.

4. The galaxy Andromeda was initially believed to be a nebula before Edwin Hubble proved that Andromeda was actually a galaxy all its own in the 1920’s. Before then, it was believed that other galaxies were merely nebulas and that the universe only consisted of the Milky Way.

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NOTHING NATURAL by Diana Hurlburt

They call him Prosper, a measure of mockery for each measure of awe.


You know the road to the laboratory blind, could walk it in your sleep—have, because sleepwalking is telltale of the godborn, so your mother says and touches your ankle in rare affection where it rests on the porch rail, one foot on the earth and one in the realm of spirits.

“Spirits,” she repeats, gesturing to the road below, the spindly pine woods and the yellow haze of heat and pollution that makes up your horizon. “He controls the spirits.”

There are no spirits, only neighbors: Men and women and half-made machines given to rust, the detritus of civilization. A plot of bloodless jackdaws, midway between flophouse and refugee camp. You know that part of her statement, at least, is true. The weak and weak-willed, the dying, the once-dead, the discarded and useless, the flagrant all require direction. Seek strength. Are used by those stronger.

Sicaria laughs and makes her crooked cross, murmurs her oblique prayer.

“Get out,” she tells you in sudden rage, “go to your master. Get out of my sight, you unworthy and unclean thing, you who have forsaken the ways of God, you who cleave to the machines. Your eyes see only falsehood.”


It is fifteen years since your mother was cast out. It is your lifetime that has been spent in wasteland, the between-place, the unplace beyond the pale. It is a pine island that shelters you, a fanatic who raises you, a scientist who uses your hands and your back and his daughter who considers your mind.

Your mind. You know you have one. All creatures do, born or made. It is the First Law of Being.

Your name. If Sicaria gave you one it has been lost. It was only after Prosper’s carelessness that anyone else tried—his accident in the lab, though he would never call it that, surely you were at fault, your clumsy hands too broad for fine work and your elbows always in the way. Acid scattered from a flask, droplets caught in sun. You did not scream; it wasn’t the worst pain you had felt. In the washroom Miranda’s hands were gentle, washing, salving. They slowed after the initial motions and your pulse followed. You examine your two faces in the mirror. If you had ever displayed beauty it was gone now, Miranda’s heightened by your face now scarred. Her luminosity beyond the human and your coarseness, a sun and its shadow.

Her hand stayed on your cheek after its necessity had lapsed. She traced the remnants of acid, specks and splotches, long fingers black and velvet like the touch of night. You believe her grasp could shift moons from their orbit.

“Calvaluna,” she said, a cantrip reshaping your vision of yourself. “I read it somewhere—where? I have never read a book. I don’t need to, Father put his knowledge into my head before he activated me. But I hear it.” She tapped her forehead, then yours. “I hear it. It means you. It suits you. Calvaluna.”

It was prettier than you, you knew that, a beautiful name. Prettier than most things. Not prettier than her.


When Prosper leaves the laboratory it is less a retirement for the evening and more retreat. He would never call it that but you believe him fearful, after all. The powerful always are. He swings himself like a cudgel upon exit, he shouts for Miranda to attend him and cuffs you, a passing blow, thoughtless. Brutality is his lever, rarely compassion.

You know his laboratory better than he does, you think, wiping down counters. You know his daughter, made in his own image but ultimately fathomless. There’s a phrase in Sicaria’s Bible that makes you quiver when you apply it to Miranda.

It is full dark when Miranda comes for you. Your laboratory is Prosper’s in miniature, piecemeal and theft-built, squirreled away in a shed in the woods south of the pine island on which the best of the unplace’s hovels are built.

“It was a citrus packing house,” Miranda says as she always does. Touches the frame of the door right and then left, stretches to her full height to brush its top. It’s a ritual the way your mother’s prayers are, her prostrations, her rages. “Before the Laws took effect there was an industry here. Fruit. Citrus fruit.” She looks at you, a delight on her face that would fire the darkness. “Can you imagine it, Calvaluna? Whole stands of trees with fruit on them. Wild fruit, just growing. Imagine taking fruit off a tree and eating it.”

Your imagination is not that good.

She goes to the single table in the laboratory and stands before it in a manner you’ve thought must be like that of the Israelites in the Holy of Holies. You are not supposed to know what that means. You are not supposed to have holiness in your life. She looks at you briefly, with mischief, and draws down the shroud you have used to protect the R.E.L.’s shell from rain.

“I think we’re close,” she says. Her eyes are fascinated, distracted; her hand reaches for you. “Come here, Calvaluna, tell me if this is calibrated properly.”

“You have your father’s knowledge,” you say. But you go and look at the R.E.L. with her. You’re proud of the effort, the work of your joined hands. You are not supposed to have pride, either. There is no pride in being raised beyond the pale. In being the offspring of a hanged woman, a witch they would have called her in days past, a lawbreaker too iconoclastic to be allowed in the city and too ineffectual to be executed, spared for her belly to the tune of mockery. Certainly there is no pride in your form or your face.

“I think he’s almost ready to revive,” Miranda says. Her joy is the only light in these woods. The sun exists, you know, in theory. Miranda’s face is your only evidence thus far, fifteen years alive and far from those spaces left which thrive in natural sunlight. She links her fingers in yours, her thumb rubs the calluses on your palm; she points with your hands to the R.E.L.’s blank and staring eyes, his half-human head, his chest with its missing heart and its new core of wires. “Oh, Calvaluna! I’m nervous. Are you nervous?”

Nervous is not the right word for what you are.


“Calvaluna,” Sicaria repeated the day you told her of Miranda’s gift. She scraped the tip of her ritual knife between her teeth, grinning. “An appropriate name for you, my aborted dream. I should have exposed you as a sacrifice to God.”

There is no god but human will. This is the Second Law of Being.


Your fellow-spirits are all will-bound to Prosper’s caprice. He makes the cogs of the community turn, greases the paths of food and potable water and herbs plucked at the witching hour that make life slightly less… life-like. Thus he is obeyed.

“Daughter,” Sicaria echoes. She spits at the trash heap beside the back gate. “Blasphemy. Blasphemy. Such words I hear from your lips, my burden. Who was it gave you speech, that you fling curses in my face? I think maybe you’re the worse for your time spent in that man’s house. I see you confuse craft for birth.” She broods, her fingers twitching at the strand of beads beneath her wrapper. “But there’s no more to be done. How else are we to live?”

Once, and only once, you suggested that perhaps her god might see to living arrangements, if she did not like how you were turning out under Prosper’s tutelage.

“Go.” She waves to the wood path. “I heard tell there was meat today.”

If there was meat to be had, you suspect it’s long gone now. Your fellow-spirits are avaricious. What have they but base pleasures?

“He’s in a gloom,” Miranda says, her face round and open as a poinciana pod. “He’s made me clean the laboratory twice over, and asked me to cook… something. I didn’t recognize it, Calvaluna. Lentil soup? What is a lentil, do you know?”

You know of lentils.

“You can’t make lentil soup,” you tell her. “He shouldn’t ask you to do things he knows are impossible.”

“He believes anything is possible,” she says. You love and hate to see her countenance. You remember a time when she would have spoken the same words in hope and affection. You know it is your fault, the way she is changing, her will a canker on the face of beauty. You wonder what Prosper will do when he realizes it. You ponder in the night, sometimes, this scholar whose eyes perceive all but the truth.

Perhaps you will be gone before he awakens.

“Race me,” Miranda says, but she takes your hand.

“How am I to race if you keep me beside you?”

“A race doesn’t have to have a winner,” she says, and begins to run.

She times these things impeccably. She runs so that you can almost believe the light follows her footsteps, that she leaves no mark on the earth. Dusk springs up behind you. You prefer night, its honesty; you prefer the real dark that would cover most of your world if not for artificial day. The unplace is a hive of night creatures. Your fellow-spirits are easiest perceived in dimness, their proclivities hidden and their countenances smoothed.

Miranda keeps your hand in hers and runs, runs, fearless and laughing. She runs like a dart flung toward the center of the south woods, the pine cloven by lightning looming over your laboratory. The pine grows despite the wound at its heart. It is where you found the R.E.L.—one of Prosper’s cast-offs, what he termed a failed experiment—half-dead and crumbling piecemeal to rust in dank rainfall.

She drops to the base of the pine and pulls you down and points up.

“I know of stars,” she says, her eyes searching as though Heaven might reveal itself. “The Southern Cross, the Swan. The Pleiades. Many more names my father gave me.” She touches her forehead, as she does when she speaks of Prosper’s knowledge, planted in her like seed corn. She is godborn more surely than you can ever be, gleaming divinity. She touches your forehead, your cheeks, the tip of your nose. “I think they must look like you. The stars beyond our sky.”

She traces the scars and specks and splotches. She draws new constellations and names them, her fingers a warm trail on your skin, her breath a promise.


Just once you asked your mother if you would ever leave the unplace. You did not then understand that no one came to the salt-strewn plots of land on the city’s outskirts by choice—no one laid eyes on the pine island and thought, I am home. It is far more difficult to leave a place you have not happened upon by choice.

“He’ll be a protector,” you say, pliers in one hand and cording in the other. “His new code will require defense. Otherwise…”

You look at Miranda and think of what might happen to her if the R.E.L.’s defensive code does not run as planned. You picture yourself and remember Sicaria’s dark jibes, her reminiscences of city life. You rub your upper arm where the contraceptive block had been implanted. It only prevents some things, can halt neither the heady mix of desire and aspiration nor flat violence.

“Defense,” Miranda says, her face solemn in its thinking pose, unaware of your thoughts. “Defense, financials, new birth records and identification…”

Her voice skips along, almost merry, a fertile stream in which to seed possibility.


The Third Law of Being is the inviolability of life. No one has ever explained to you whether the Law covers all life.


Light explodes behind your eyes when Prosper’s hand meets your skull. Or, you realize a little belatedly, it is the fault of the lab table, the edge of it kissing your temple. Air rushes from your lungs. You stare at the vault above the shed in the woods, its ceiling gaping in sections to reveal leaves, the white sky of noon.

Miranda flies at him, her face dressed in horror. You have never kissed her, you think. You would prefer not to die unkissed; you’d prefer not to die at all.

“Ungrateful wretch,” Prosper says. “Twisted ape-child, spawn of—how thought you?” He smashes his hand across the table. “How thought you to betray my kindness? To turn my own blood against me?” He lifts one of the R.E.L.’s arms, almost delicately. “Whore and daughter of whores. Thief.”

Small comfort to think his rage stems from fear, but it’s enough. Prosper would not be angry if he didn’t believe the R.E.L. was sound.

“You.” He points to Sicaria in the doorway. One of your fellow-spirits has fetched her at his command and she is in a state, white-eyed and gagging on anger. “Take your mooncalf in hand, I never want to see her again. Corruptor.”

He catches Miranda and snares her arms, wrenches her close, covers her head with his hands as though she is innocent. As though healing and reviving the R.E.L. were not her idea. As though a child can be born of only one parent. The R.E.L. is your inheritance, legacy of unnatural issue, a being greater than the sum of its creators.

“This abomination will be destroyed,” Prosper says. Sicaria prays in the doorway, her eyes not on you nor on the R.E.L. but searching, seeking. She hates the sight of machines. Had the city not cast her out for improper worship she would have repudiated them anyway.

“He is an R.E.L.,” Miranda says. You stare despite the throb in your head, the blood in your eyes. Her voice remains soft, wondering, a caress on the cyborg’s clinical name. Aerial, a creature of movement and possibility. “Robotically Enhanced Lifeform. Give him his name, Father, lend some pity, even if you thought nothing of flinging him into the trash when he failed to serve you.”

“Abomination,” he repeats. “Homunculus, deformity—daughter. Listen. Calvaluna has done wrong in her ignorance but you… you are not ignorant, Miranda.”

You marvel at the blindness of the learned man, the man cast out for his learned ways, the man who has made the wilderness blossom in decay. Lord of chaos, king of the misruled.

“God be with me in this hour,” Sicaria prays, her hands on either side of the doorframe. “God be with me in my pain, God give me strength for the task before me, God grant me…”

Me, you mouth. God be with Sicaria, and science with Prosper, and neither passionate belief nor dispassionate prowess sustain them. Miranda looks at you from beneath her father’s hands. Her smile is your signpost, her trust your life raft. Your fellow-spirits are like unto you only in substance: Crude matter, blunt usefulness. Miranda is your true equal, beloved of your soul. Her eyes remain open.

Your eyes must remain open. You must get up. There are but two steps between you and the table, one step in the scientific process, a bare nudge of your fingers at the master switch. Miranda’s being is in your hands.

On the table, the R.E.L. casts off slumber and rattles to life.

Ok so here is the crazy plot twist! Murder mystery/thriller, two queer women, season finale, neither dies, they end up together, happy, with kids… It’s revolutionary 😭

anonymous asked:

Well... It's for ExR week... Thank for reading ^*^ (it's in 11 parts)

Grantaire drives, his child sitting in the backseat, his girlfriend next to him. The road is not really long, but he don’t like making the way back alone, so Floréal is here. Antoine looks through the window, he recognizes its surroundings. He loves Paris, even if he prefers the South and its olive trees that his dad paints nostalgically.

Suddenly, the car slows down right in front of a building. -Tu crois que je peux aller dans la cours? L'autre fois le concierge n'était pas là, mais bon… asks his father to Floréal. He likes Floréal: she’s beautiful, and sweet, and smells like spring’s air. She has something from the sun, and something from the flowers, and when his dad wins a boxing match, he says that he won it for her, and he finds that so cool.

Finally, they enter in the inner courtyard, where are already parked two motorbikes. Against a wall a tall blond man waits, looking severe. Antoine wave his hand at him, hoping that he sees him. The man seems to smile, and raise his hand. The car stops, and while his father get out of it to take his stuffs in the trunk, he hugs Floréal and give her a kiss on the cheek.

Then, Grantaire opens him the door, which Antoine can’t open himself because of the baby’s security. As soon as he put his foots on the ground that he runs toward the tall blond man, squatted at his height. -PAPAAAAAA!, he yells, as his second dad receive him. -Viens-là gamin!, says him, as he lift him, with a cheerful smile on his face.

His other dad is following, dragging Antoine’s suitcase behind him. His two dads make each other two kisses on the cheek, and the short blend of Grantaire’s perfume and the smell of Enjolras’s soap disturb Antoine a little. -Bon, je te le laisse… Il a déjà mangé, et si je me souviens bien, Harry Potter passe demain soir sur TF1, et c'est pas encore trop tard pour lui, il n'y a pas de mal.

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New story: The Night Garden

 I don’t know where its going, or how its going to pan out, or how long or short it will be… not much to go on, sorry! If anyone read the short Beauty and Beast I posted, this kind of spun off from there, in a very abstract convoluted kind of way.

I do know it will be a relatively slow burn Klaroline, in fact, they may not meet for a few chapters in this one initially as it has a much richer background story and character building (hopefully). It is also a dark and angsty fic, so don’t read if that isn’t your thing.

Caroline Forbes has a secret. She is an extraordinary girl in an ordinary world. But when her brother goes missing, and she discovers his hidden quest to reach the mysterious Night Garden, she begins to question everything she thought she knew about her world and the things that go bump in the night.

Read the chapter here


The Nighteyes Reagent Archive: Writer’s Notes

The Frost Flower has long been considered one of the most rare and beautiful plants in the Spiral. This delicate-looking plant is unique in that it thrives in extremely cold climates and permafrost soils, but strong enough to withstand the gusts of mountain blizzard wind. Because of its icy nature, its petals are ideal for use as cold storage of other reagents to slow down the decomposition process.

aries - you are an anchor trying to swim and the fish are tearing their castle down around you but please hold your breath for a few seconds longer i promise you’ll breathe again

taurus - your theories about two a.m. texts and green hoodies could be true but you won’t get the answers you want by locking the questions up in that pretty little head of yours

gemini - i know your eyes are focused on that blinding future just ahead, but do you miss it? the wind in your hair and her hand in yours and adventure calling our names? do you miss feeling like you could live tomorrow and die yesterday and still be okay?

cancer - big and loud is how you’ve been playing it lately, and you’re about to burst from the stress of it all. just let yourself dance for a second and regain balance. all will be well.

leo - buckling down is hard and that tantalizing distraction on your arm isn’t making it any easier to smooth the wrinkles out of the papers lying on your desk so wave him away to a cloudy day and focus. you can do it.

virgo - to-do list: 1. slow down. darling, you’ve been running for so long that nothing is chasing you anymore. 2. watch the sunset. let its lavender rays pull you into its lukewarm hands. i’ve always thought that’s where you belong. 3. call me. i miss you.

libra - find the balance between tumbling through grass and cartwheeling across stages because if you don’t steady yourself soon you’ll pull this movie set down around you

scorpio - you’re not a part of a horrible beautiful crazy mess right now and you miss it terribly but don’t let that punching curiosity get the best of you and fall into an old sadness you can’t explain

sagittarius - you must be sick of hearing your own voice by now but you need to keep unraveling the stories she hasn’t heard yet to keep her sane. we’ve all known for some time now and you may not want to admit it but she is flickering from the harsh winds of teenage tragedy so keep talking until you are background noise yet again

capricorn - the unavoidable truth is that you can’t solve all your problems in one night and i know that all you want to do is dig your hands deep in the dirt and solve everyone else’s instead but steep that tea a little while longer and breathe in the words i’ve left for you

aquarius - break out of the fort of emails and letters and broken hearts that you’ve built around yourself and go on a quest to clear your mind. take a magnifying glass and butterfly net and chase a bug that isn’t buzzing around your head. don’t come back until you catch one.

pisces - the taste on your tongue is sugar sweet and the butterflies have shed their cocoons and learning to feel like this again is like tripping over your feet at a middle school dance but you’ll pick yourself up again to the beat of drums

—  horoscopes, 10/5 - 10/11
nestled // newt scamander

request(s): Hi. I loved your story “snatchers”; you are such a great writer. I was wondering if you could please write something about Newt teaching the reader about his creatures. Thank you! (by @tigerinravenclawsclothing


Newt showed his lady friend (for Who he has feelings for) around the habbits of the creaturs. The creaturs will think that she is his mate. Later newt and the girl fall a sleep. And the creaturs wanna help him out so they build a nest a round them. (by @ship-it-girl)

a/n: lololol kieRA wrote this but i (roxanna the evil piece of shit) snuck into her draft so hemhem anyways a big THANKYOU to the account that said i was a good writer because i felt super freaking fly afterwards ;-) ANYWAYS ENJOY KIERA’S AMAZING HARD WORK YALL

kiera: … oh well


nestled // newt scamander

Newt’s case was officially the most exciting place you’ve ever been in.

It was a whole new place, a whole new world, you’ve never even heard of! It was totally devoid of any humans, yet filled with the most interesting beings on the planet. Your eyes were wide with disbelief as Newt walked through the lands purposefully in front of you, the buckets of food in his arms, like all these creatures were a sight he already grew used to. You supposed he would have, after all these years, but what you didn’t know was that Newt wasn’t as confident as he looked–on the contrary, he was terribly on the edge, wondering if you would be impressed by what you saw.

Newt had loved you ever since you defended his creatures back in Hogwarts.

You were the only person who truly related to his love of these beings, often wanting to learn as much as you could from him and his extraordinary ‘pets’. Later on, you moved to America before you could graduate from Hogwarts, completing your education in Ilvermorny. It wasn’t until lately that Newt sent you an owl, informing you that he was visiting in New York, and wondered if you would care to meet.

You never thought that a catch-up session would turn into a trip into his magical suitcase. Stunned by the majestic creatures, you reluctantly shuffled forward as Newt moved on, determined not to make eye-contact with you if he could help it.

Newt had thought that what he had on you was merely a crush. But seeing you again after all these years, it had obviously grown into something much more.

And Newt had no idea how to deal with it.

“Scamander! Can we please slow down so I can look at them?” you begged, refusing to tear your eyes away from a large creature the size of a horse, spikes running down from its head to its long, strong-looking tail. It had something like tentacles sprouting from its mouth, and would have looked quite aggressive if it wasn’t tending to a younger one.

Newt’s heart skipped a beat when he realised, as beautiful as you may have grown to, you were hardly any different on the inside. Smiling when he heard you call him “Scamander,” which was something you loved to do, he spun around, clutching the metal bucket tightly as he walked back to you.

“This,” he attempted to sound professional, “is called a Graphorn. They are often found in Europe mountains, and the mountain trolls just love to ride them. They hate it, though.” Newt placed the bucket on the floor, casually tossing the mystery meat out of it.

The Graphorn lunged after it, tackling the meat and tearing it apart savagely. You looked in wonder as it paid you no attention, only looking up to nuzzle Newt in thanks.

“And this, is a Nundu,” the two of you stopped beneath a large rock, where a large, lion shaped creature with tiny sharp pikes on its body lay, resting. “This was incredibly hard for me to capture by my own. When it roars, it inflates itself like a pufferfish would, scaring off and eliminating any competition.”

Newt lifted his shirt to show a large, jagged scar that ran from his bellybutton to the side of his stomach. You blushed when he did, his muscles not going unnoticed as you stared intently at it. (a/n: go search up eddie redmayne shirtless because it might be the best fucking decision you make :-D )

“I got this scar when the Nundu attacked me. I was very lucky though. It’s spikes didn’t go deep, just scrapped the surface of my flesh. It could have been fatal.”

You ran a finger tentatively across it, and Newt repressed a shudder from your warm fingers.

You smiled softly at him, looking up into his pale blue eyes. “This place is wonderful,” you breathed sincerely. “I could live here forever.”

Unknown to you, Newt’s heart melted.

The two of you carried on, Newt continuing his commentary and you looking at everything in awe. You learnt that a Diricrawl was know as a Dodo bird to Muggles, and because of their teleporting abilities, they thought that they were long extinct. You gasped when the Mooncalves appeared from their burrows, earnestly crowding around Newt as he tossed them food. You laughed when you watched Newt attempt to place his Bowtruckle, Pickette, back onto the tree where the others were playing. Pickette held onto his hand for dear life, and Newt gave up after a while, grumbling that it was too attached to him for its own good.

By the time you arrived back where Frank the Thunderbird was perched at, you were exhausted. You collapsed onto the ground dramatically, spreading your limbs as you sighed out loud. “This place is amazing!” you yelled to Newt.

Frank flapped his wings in agreement, creating such a wind that Newt laughed as you quickly got up to avoid Frank’s claws, Repositioning yourself below his perch, you rested your head against your arms.

Newt came to join you, lying by your side as your eyelids fluttered open and close. The two of you lay on the straw, comfortable silence taking over.

He looked over at you when you shifted to lie closer to his chest. His heart jumped in his throat.

“(Y/n)?” he asked softly.

You were out like a light in less than a minute. You sighed against his clothed chest, unconsciously muttering his name. “Newt…”

Newt lay back, content. Everything was perfect in this moment.

Then he too, let sleep overtake him.

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misteruniverse-deactivated20170  asked:

ok but diet coke and mentos in the sans ectotum

Warnings: #Fast Weight Gain #Belly Expansion #Implied Stomach Popping #Soda Inflation #Mentos and Soda Experiment #Giant Gut #Belching

“…hlp… hic!” A burp. “ hhff… hic! ughh…”

Sans lay prone on his backside, feeling dizzy, hazy and utterly foolish. He was silently thankful he was within the safety of his bedroom. This ridiculous “experiment” he’d concocted would have been disastrous if performed in public.

One fizzy candy and one bottle of diet cola, that was all he needed to test his theory. He could have gone with the MTT ™ Cola from the Hotland Hotel snack bar. 

But no. He had to go digging in places he shouldn’t have. Like the dump, where he found a case full of discarded but otherwise untouched human brand soda pop. A thick, enticing two liter bottle of chocolate-colored fizzy delight, still vacuum packed and cold thanks to the chilly depths of the dump. Probably lost during a wayward camping trip. 

He’d never tried human food before, so who was to say it wouldn’t do for a cool set of variables. 

He’d been dying to test the limits of his monstrous appetite. That whole “diet cola and popping candy” challenge seemed safe enough– at least as a good precursor to the later, more daring banana and lemon cola challenge. It didn’t even involve that much food! Just a simple chemical reaction with measured results. Like a dumb old science fair volcano. What harm could it do?

Apparently plenty. 

a-all for– hic! s-science i said– hic! hlp– hiccup- hic!” A groan. Another burp, interrupted but an untimely onslaught of hiccups. “ulp… it’ll b-be hIC! f-fun i said– hicCUP!! hic! hIC!!”

He weakly reached up massage his bloated middle, but barely so much as touching it would send the bubbles burbling around within him. They combined, increased in size, multiplied, and pushed his already distended gut out an extra inch. Sans whimpered and hiccuped, the jolts from his spasming ghostly diaphragm jostling the steadily expanding magical sac even further. Oh god, he hoped he didn’t pop. He’d be out of commission for days if that happened. 

And yet, at first this sensation had felt incredible

The act of filling up was pleasant enough on its own, but the fact that this required one tenth the usual effort eating usually took made it somehow even more wonderful. Any way to make things the lazy way was a-ok by Sans (at least at first).

As much as he enjoyed the whole eating process, especially when it came to Grillby’s fantastically unhealthy cooking, the fact that all he had to do was lie there on his creaking mattress and watch in fascination as his magical blue sac filled in all the gaps on its own was both fascinating and satisfying. 

One long gulp of the whole human beverage and one whole packet of candy– no sense in beating around the bush (…yeesh, maybe papyrus was starting to rub off on him). The reaction of the acidic material combining with basic was almost beautiful to watch, the dark foamy compound swirling and bubbling and quickly dissolving into a gassy, oddly less sparkly, more opaque magical solution. He heard the mixture pop and fizzle, almost as if it were alive of its own accord. Simple, yet so brilliant. 

It had been slow at first, inching little by little of the flabby membrane up and outward. What was once a flabby deflated stomach (he’d skipped lunch in lieu of curiosity) was now slowly creeping outward, bubble by bubble, burble by grumble. The millions of bubbles from the fizzy drink tickled as his tummy stretched further, prompting burps and hiccups as it expanded at a steady pace. It felt heavier earlier than he’d expected, most likely thanks to the thicker, more solid human world cola alongside the sparkly, magical monster candy. 

Sans watched on blissfully drunk, giggling giddy as his stomach expanded outward from the front and the sides, slowly pressing him down onto his mattress. First one foot out, then two, then three– then four! It just kept on going. It felt so exciting, even when the edges started to pinch against his pelvis and ribs. 

But then it started to hurt. 

And it wouldn’t stop growing. 

“ohhh– hlp hff– hIC! hic! i-i gotta– hic! l-let some of this– hic! g-gas out!”

He searched, phalanges fumbling at first, but soon became desperate to find relief as the bubbles of fizzy human beverage foamed and expanded further, bloating his gut almost two more feet at once. 

It took some work– ohh he hated working– but Sans pushed through his dizzy fog and fits of hiccups, catching some troublesome bubbles along his generous love handles, then up and long his sides– wherever he could reach most easily. 

BRUUUAAAAAaaaghmphhh! hic! hiCUP! b-BRAAAAAAUUUUMP!” He huffed, finding more slack near his pelvis and pinching the bubbles as quickly as he could in his sluggish state. 

Oh god– he was so big now he couldn’t even reach his arms all the way around. His belly was so engorged and wobbly, it kept him prisoner on his own bed. He would’ve been proud if he weren’t in so much pain. He almost felt betrayed that something so beautiful to look at was causing him such distress… but then again, this whole mess was his fault to begin with. But he could worry about blame later!


Even more slack, and yet somehow his stomach continued growing. If he didn’t act soon, he’d paint his whole room (and medical bill) in fluorescent blue. 

“hff hufffff– hic! alright buddy, you wanna pla–hicCUP! hic! h-hardball?” Sans gulped, summoning every inch of magic he had in his left eye, focusing on an extra dark spot at the very center of it all. He grabbed it– it held!– and flicked it to his right side. With a wince, he gave the thick, dark bubble a hearty pinch. 


It felt like a 9 on the Richter scale at least. sans was certain he heard the window rattle, and was quietly thankful that Papyrus was out training with Undyne. 

And just like that, it was all over. Apparently he’d hit the center of where the reaction was going wrong. His belly continued to make fizzy, popping noises mingled with the usual gurgles and burbles of a full tummy, but the bloating had been stifled. 

And not a moment too soon, Sans realized. He marveled upward at the results of the experiment gone wrong, panting and moaning, the hiccups not yielding. His belly towered over him a good length away, his clothes long since pushed away by the sheer force of the bloat. He looked… (he couldn’t believe it) he looked at least as wide as he was tall. That wasn’t much, but it was the furthest he’d ever gotten in his binges. 

Sans couldn’t deny that the results were astounding. Human food combining with monster food was not a good variable to start with, but boy did they bring in the results. 

As he stared, catching his breath, he figured a change of clothes would be a good way to start the damage control. He was still fairly tired, but if he was going to pass out he was not going to pass out in his sweat and spit drenched sweater. He was going to pass out in a shirt he’d drenched in sweat yesterday. 

As he pulled it off and slipped on a six XXXL MTT Concert tee (it still didn’t fit him past his ribs, but it as something), he noticed that his magical sack had compensated for the lacking space between his ribs and pelvis all on its own, forcing the membrane to grow upwards along his ribs and form extra pockets closer to his sternum that almost resembled… well, moobs for lack of a better word. Hopefully Papyrus wouldn’t notice. Well… if he did, he could always fall back onto boob jokes. 

In spite of his discomfort and exhaustion, he patted the magical belly in thanks for potentially saving him– pleasantly surprised that it held a lot of give thanks to the pesky trouble bubble popping away. He tried to push himself upright to get an even better view, but the weight of the encased magic stubbornly pressed back down. After a few false starts, he propped himself up against the far wall, wincing as gravity acted accordingly on his gut, pressing it painfully on top of his femurs. He spread his legs out (fairly far out), and adjusted the waistband of his shorts, causing even more of his unseen gut to spill forth and jiggle onto his lap. 

“ulf… hic!” he let out a small burp, looked down, then did a double-take. “hic! w-whoa… hicCUP!” 

Sans had been right. He was as wide as he was tall, if not more. 

He wrapped his legs around his front in an attempt to sit cross legged, but his toes did not even come close to touching. He could barely see the mattress beyond his bulging middle. This was, without a doubt, the biggest he’d ever been (well, at least as far as he could remember in this timeline). 

Hesitant at first, he tested the side of his gut, pushing it and prodding it in certain places to see where the give came and went. He was stunned, but gladly so, to feel it was starting to change from taught and firm to plush already– maybe it was because most of the mass was caused by trapped air and foam rather than solid magical foodstuffs. He pressed it, caressed it, marveled at it, thankful to finally come down from his panic as he watched in hazy wonder. It wobbled back and forth, rippling like an enormous vat of blueberry jello. Sans snorted, the giddiness returning. 

“hic! talk about- hic! talk ‘bout -hic! hicCUP! t-talllllk ‘bout …empty calories…” 

He giggled at his own joke, causing his belly to wobble more. Which only made him giggle harder. It was a vicious cycle only interrupted by squeaky little hiccups. Soon he was a mess of jiggly giddiness, and could only fall to his side and slowly laugh himself to sleep, staring fondly at his experiment-gone-wrong-gone-very-right. 

Maybe, in the future, he should experiment with human food more often. 


The white Elven-tree alone [Tar-Aldarion] spared; and when the woodcutters were gone he looked at it, standing amid the desolation, and he saw for the first time that it was in itself beautiful. In its slow Elven growth it was yet but twelve feet high, straight, slender, youthful, now budded with its winter flowers upon upheld branches pointing to the sky. It recalled to him his daughter, and he said: “I will call you also Ancalimë. May you and she stand so in long life, unbent by wind or will, and unclipped!" 

– Tar-Ancalimë (Huda Naccache), Tar-Telperiën (Ajuma Nasenyana), Tar-Vanimeldë (Noor Bhatti), and Tar-Míriel (Leila Nda)

Rating: ★★★★

Genre: Poetry

Medium: Paperback

Synopsis: Faudet discusses his previous relationships and lovers with tantalizing prose and poetry.  He allows the readers an insight to his life, and to the various situations he and his lovers have been in–whether it’s watching hentai, having sex out in the open, or watching his lover deteriorate from a harrowing drug addiction.

Review: I bought this book at Barnes and Noble simply because it looked pretty, and because the few poems I flipped to were so well written.  When I entered it on my Goodreads, I was pleased to find out that this was a book on my To-Read list!  So, over the course of the next two nights, I curled up in bed and let myself be taken in by such beautiful poetry.

After reading this in its entirety, I realized two things: his short poems and longer poems are spaced out in a way that ensures you don’t read it too quickly or too slow, and that this was one of the most erotic things I’ve read in a long while.  His writing is beautiful and sensual–a type of writing that immerses you in it, that you need to bask in.  In all honesty, I don’t read a whole lot of poetry, but let me tell y’all that this book will easily find its way to my ‘favorites’ bookshelf.

Body language analysis of 2x14

Lexa has contemplated Clarke’s words from earlier and came to the decision that Clarke is a smart, capable leader and knows her people better than she does, so she will heed Clarke’s words, and leave Octavia alone. Clarke’s feathers are still ruffled from earler. When Clarke comes to a stop to the side of Lexa, she rest her weight to one side of her body, her hip sticking out, her chin up. This is a defiant pose. Her face and her body says, “what the hell do you want?” When Lexa tells Clarke of her decision, Clarke’s eyebrow twitches, she’s wondering how Lexa has done a complete 180° since she saw her last. She blinks twice rapidly, indicating she’s shocked Lexa has decided this. Lexa looks away from Clarke, “I do trust you, Clarke.” This is a difficult admission for Lexa. Clarke quickly looks down and to the left, thinking (as always) of the right thing to say. She steps into Lexa’s space, her face reads sincere. She wants Lexa to know she appreciates her trust. Lexa turns to look at Clarke, reading her eyes. She seems to have also contemplated everything Clarke has ever said to her because her next words of, “you think our ways are harsh…” are completely unprompted. She deeply cares what Clarke thinks of her and she doesn’t want her to continue thinking that she and her people are “savages.” Lexa says this and nods her head slightly,  acknowledging that she knows exactly what Clarke thinks about her and her people. She wants Clarke to understand instead of judge.

“Maybe life should be about more than just surviving.” Clarke looks away, contemplating her own words, undoubtedly reliving everything she and her people have been through since coming to earth. Lexa’s brow furrows a tiny bit, Clarke’s words hits her pretty hard. Lexa’s eyes widen slightly, she scans Clarke’s face, she examines her throughly as Clarke continues to looks away. She mulls over Clarke’s words briefly. She stares at Clarke’s mouth like she’s starving. Her bottom lip quivers slightly. She’s going through a plethora of varying emotions in this moment. This is a prime example of her internal struggle with Heda v. Lexa.

She takes a very deep, long, audible breath but it’s far closer to a gasp than anything else before she responds with, “maybe we do.” She’s still staring at Clarke’s lips, a tell tell sign of the desire to kiss someone. It takes every once of courage in Lexa to reach for Clarke, she moves swiftly as to not lose the courage she’s managed to muster up.

Clarke looks taken aback and stunned, she blinks rapidly twice before closing her eyes and opening her mouth. She more than welcomes this kiss although she’s more than shocked by it. Once they begin to kiss Lexa is no longer brazen. She’s timid, reserved, and gental with Clarke. They fall into the kiss more and more and Clarke brings her hand around Lexa’s back to pull their bodies closer. She’s wholly lost in this embrace. The longer they kiss the more confident Lexa becomes. She sweetly runs her nose along Clarke’s, switching sides to deepen the kiss further.

This brief moment of their lips parting snaps Clarke back into reality. Her face, with her eyes still closed says, “wait, Clarke, no.” She shakes her head a bit, her eyes still closed and softly apologizes to Lexa. She doesn’t want to hurt her feelings and she knows she needs to handle this delicately. The second Clarke stops the kiss, Lexa’s hand snaps away lighting fast. She jumps, startled out of the moment as well and takes a step back,  away from Clarke. She respects Clarke’s boundaries. Before Clarke speaks again, Lexa examines her face. Her lips tighten slightly. She does not know what Clarke is about to say next and she fears the worse.

“I’m not ready to be with anyone,” is said with sincerity and a shake of her head indicates as much. Lexa’s mask is back on. She’s put her walls back up to prevent or pretend this isn’t painful… to be denied by Clarke. She tilts her chin up too, this is this is a power move, this says, “you can’t hurt me.” It’s more so reassurance for herself. She searches Clarke’s eyes. Idk what she’s looking for exactly, maybe hope. Which is given to her when Clarke says, “not yet.” Clarke means “someday, maybe, I could see myself with you.” Her brow quirks and her head shakes. Her face says, “can you understand this? I don’t mean to hurt you but I can’t do this right now.” Lexa’s mask immediately slips right back off. Her eyes aren’t hard anymore but they are open and bright. She’s staring at Clarke with reverence. She searches her eyes once more looking for the truth behind Clarke’s words. She finds it quickly and gives a slight nod in understanding. But then she looks down, a cloud over her eyes. She’s very, very disappointed. But she does understand. Clarke looks at Lexa with regret and apologies in her eyes.

Jungkook - A Future


Thug, thug, thug, thug, thug 

They say a person’s heartbeat is  the most beautiful rhythm made. 

Tempo, too is made in the heart. Fast, slow or just beating normally. 

Science– Biology in particular had never been your cup of tea. But one thing fascinates you, every single time you see your long-time boyfriend, Jeon Jungkook, your heart beats so fast its overwhelming, as if you’re on cloud nine. 

They say its normal when you’re in love and you could only sigh as you place your chin on your palm, looking out the window dreamily. 

‘They must be right’ you thought,

A buzz on your phone awoke you from your afternoon trance. 

[I’m outside come out

You smiled at the sender; Jungkookie as you labelled his number. 

You ran downstairs and head towards the front door. You let out a giggle before you opened the door, grinning widely to greet Jungkook but  it soon faltered when a glare was returned to you. 


"We need to talk” he said, looking from his left to right anxiously. 

You nodded and let him in then closed the door behind you. Jungkook paced down your living room, back and fourth. 

“Jungkook what’s up?” you asked, worried

“Haven’t you seen online? You are all over it!” he shouted 

You flinched slightly at his sudden raise of voice before you stepped back. “Wha…What are you talking about?" 

"Somehow the fans had gotten their hands of a picture of us!” he yelled

“Who… how…” you said blankly, unsure of how to react. You slowly let yourself fall on the couch. 

“Your friends. They posted that picture of us from the barbecue last week,” he said and stopped in front of you, a mixture of anger and worry penetrates through his eyes. 

“How did you know it was them? It can’t be them. They knew too well to do that”

He laughed mockingly. “Well obviously not too well enough to be careful before publicizing that photo”

You grew annoyed of his attitude. “Well… I’ll talk to them…” you mumbled, sighing

“Talk to them? Its a little too late now isn’t it??” he retorted and ran a hand through his hair. “Do you know what could happen to us? to you? to my career? Because of your friends?!" 

You stood up and looked at him straight in the eyes, flames and anger was all you could see and so you returned the same gaze to him. "Can you calm down for a minute Jungkook?” you said 

“How can I calm down when we are currently the trending topic for gossip right now huh? How can I when my career is on danger because of that photo?” he said, towering over you

Tears started to fall off your eyes. “Don’t you think I know that Jungkook?” you said wiping your tears with the back of your hand. “It seems like that’s your only concern right now…” you muttered “…your career

Jungkook softened, realizing the words he chose. He stepped forward to hold you but almost immediately you stepped back dodging his touch.

You looked down "Do whatever to deny the rumours to save your career. I’ll talk to my friends…” you said and walked your way down the front door. “For now… get out" 


"Bye Jungkook” you said ever so quietly and opened the door for him. 

“____, I didn’t mean it th–”

“Just go” you said sternly 

Jungkook sighed before he stepped out. You blinked then closed the door on his face. You immediately went to your bedroom and jump on your bed to cry. 



Your heartbeat was beating fast

The only difference was, you weren’t in cloud nine anymore. 


The following day, Jungkook did not stop calling you. 

You were walking in the market when your phone started ringing. You groaned followed by a roll of eyes as you send the caller to voice mail. 

You kept pushing your trolley when suddenly there was a tap on your shoulder. You turned to see Jeon Jungkook in front of you. 

Your eyes widened as you look at the other shoppers who had noticed him in the market. 

“Jungkook! What the hell are you doing here?” you asked frantically and pulled his hood up to cover his face. “What were you thinking” you hissed, fixing his hood. 

You heard him chuckle before removing his hood once again. He looked at you sincerely. “I came because, you’re not answering any of my calls” he stepped forward and held your cheeks. “and you know how painful it is to see you decline my call?” he pouted. 

“You idiot, put your hood back up people will recognize you!” you scolded quietly. 

He shook his head “People had already recognize me, you dummy” he chuckled and poke your nose. 

You rolled your eyes, “What do you want?”

“To apologize?” he said trying to catch your gaze as you looked away from him. 

“For what?” you asked, a smirked tugging on your lips. 

“For being insensitive” he muttered. 

“I’m sorry I didn’t hear that what was it again?" 

This time, he rolled his eyes, "I’m sorry for being insensitive" 

"You know for someone who’s apologizing you got some attitude” you said playfully, raising your eyebrows

He pouted once again, making you go on an awe to the boy who stood before you. Its amazing how everything and everyone seem to dispersed. And how you can’t stay mad at him. 

“You’re forgiven” you laughed 

“I’m sorry” he said once again before pulling you in for a hug. “I’m sorry. I love you more than anything else– I’d change my career if I have to" 

You pulled away to look at him. "That, I will never forgive.” you said. “I love you Jungkook and I want you to be happy. You don’t need to give up anything for me. Your career is your dream and I can’t take away your dream from you" 

He smiled upon you, "My dream long changed the moment I fell for you, jagiya” he said tucking in your loose hair. “A future with you is my dream, a family with you is my dream. You are my dream" 

The Theory of Reincarnation (2/3)

At last. The second part of the Reincarnation!AU vaguely inspired by Cloud Atlas (though it’s really vague). 

[first part: Inception AU] - [second part: Ghost AU] - [third part (TBW)]
I will post it on AO3 once it’s finished.
NB: you don’t really need to have read the first part to understand what’s going on. The italics parts are L’s writings in the first universe and the story takes place in another one. Here is the ghost!AU!

For danathelaugh​, I am sorry I took so long darling! I hope you enjoy it.

Light loved the ghost; it was weird and did not belong in this world. It was everything they accused him to be in secret.

Light chose the career, honestly. It was one of these conscious, yet forced choice. But he did choose, at some point, to be a detective. The path seemed natural to him, not well-lit or pleasant, but natural.

He was taught the virtues of duty by his father’s lack of presence at home – duty calls, he’d say at dinner time and that made his wife smile softly. Little Light used to think: duty is the powerful force that pulls dad away. Duty… he had a sour and clear taste of it. The rest, all the principles of law and the conduct of an investigation, Light could learn. He was one of these students who doesn’t need passion to set his mind in motion. He let the words of his teachers seep into him, his head against the windowpane and in his eyes, a sorrow they all preferred to call nonchalance.

If life is a game, then how do you win it? By achieving new records, beating the odds. You must do better than your father before you.

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Till the End of Time: 12 Days of Christmas, Day 5 - Baby it’s cold outside.

2nd Person - Words 1.2k

Warning: I ended up writing about balls and nipples and I’m not sorry. 


It was cold outside. Colder than what was normal but in the car the heat was bathing over your exposed skin. Turning your head towards your fiancée you watch as he concentrates on the road in front of him. His hand found its way to your thigh not long after you had gotten into the car and it was still comfortably resting there even as he sang along to the radio.

His voice was deep and slow like you were used to as he harmonised with the song. “Oh baby its cold outside.”

The smile he gave you as he looked over at you with was large, and the beautiful green of his eyes was glinting in the dim light of the car. You could tell that he wanted you to sing along with him but there was no way that was going to happen when you had to compete with a voice like his.  

Shaking your head your head at him you lift his hand up from your thigh and bringing it your lips to press a small kiss to the back of it. Feeling your lips against his hand causes Harry to smile and lift his finger so he can run it alongside your cheek as he sings directly to you as he stops at a red light.

“Oh but baby its cold outside.” He finishes loudly as he tilts his head back against the head rest.

You chuckled turning your eyes towards the traffic light noting that it had changed colours. “Oh baby, it’s green.”

Turning his head towards the traffic light as well he sees what you do and presses his foot on the throttle before anybody has the chance to beep him form not moving in the busy London traffic.

When you finally arrive at the Christmas tree place you’re surprised that nobody’s around. You laugh when Harry rushes around to open the door for you and take your hand to help you out of his range rover.

“Come on Mrs Styles.”

“Not yet Styles. We still have a few months to go.” He squeezed you hand with a teasing smile on his face before he leaned down to kiss you.

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Riding at High Elevation

For the last couple of days we have been riding our final miles through the San Juan Mountain Range of the Rocky Mountains. Since we last updated, we rode through the many steep short mountains of the Ozarks. There, with minimal services available, we made our way through the rugged terrain and dealt with the psychological effects of the ever present and biting horse flies with which we shared the road and campsites. We have ridden across Northern Oklahoma, including the Panhandle, in an essentially straight line at a gradual 1-3 % grade. We learned how valuable access to water is, how tough it is to survive in such a desolate land, and how generous and kind the remaining residents are. We give Oklahoma our respect and are grateful for all of the friendly people who welcomed us into their homes for water. We learned how difficult it is for us to ride in deep sand, something on our minds as we head into the San Rafael Swell in Utah, just as Oklohoma mud was a concern when we were in Mississippi. We “vacationed” in New Mexico for less than 100 miles, where the change of scenery, geography, and prevalence of operational windmill driven water pumps, made for easy and entertaining riding. Into Colorado with a lot of momentum, where new types of food, abundant opportunities for espresso, awe inspiring scenery, ideal road conditions, interesting culture, mountains, water and trees sucked us in and slowed us down. The mountain climbs and weather have so far been generous to us, with few exceptions.

The first being our first major high elevation climb on the route to St. Charles Peak, located in the Wet Mountain range in the Southern Rocky Mountain System. In our observation, the climbs we have done that go over 10,500 ft. typically offer difficulty of a sort related to varying combinations of the road conditions, temperature, and physical effects on the body. The bulk of our riding in Colorado has been at an elevation of 7,000 to 10,000 feet, so when we climb from circa 8,000 to over 10,500, that’s typically a big deal for us. The length and distance of a climb are also crucial. On paper, St. Charles Peak looked like a moderate climb of 4,100 ft gain in 25 miles, ultimately reaching a peak elevation of 11,200 feet. We started our ride that day with a hilly 35 mile warm up from La Veta. By the time we stuffed our bellies with good eats from the Wild Flower cafe in Gardner, it was 3 p.m. Our goal was to climb and set camp at lower elevations on the other side by dark. As the story always seems to go, the climb was much harder than expected, took much longer, and required us to improvise. We had been spoiled by the smooth fast roads through Colorado to this point so when our route turned onto a sandy ATV trail and our giddy initial enthusiasm for a change of terrain wore off, we started noticing the effect of the many short steep descents. We had assumed there would be a more constant grade while climbing. What we encountered was sharp descents, steep climbs, and very infrequent periods of low intensity cycling. We had expected to be moving much faster than we were, and after many hours of pedaling (sometimes walking, in my case) we reached the top of the mountain, just as the sun was setting. We had no idea what the descent would be like, other than it was 10 miles, but we have a preference for setting camp in the light, so we decided to set camp where we were, at the top. This was only our third day in Colorado, and our first day riding anywhere above 9,000 ft, so choosing to sleep at 11,200 ft was pushing our luck. We were both physically well and had carried enough water to the top with us to camp without access to a water source (we call this dry camping). We set camp, built a fire, and quickly put it out (to be continued…), ate dinner, put on all of our clothes and enjoyed a relatively good nights rest, lit up by billions of stars in a clear black sky. This climb set the bar of difficulty, and from then on we started taking a different approach to riding through Colorado, one that is defined by shorter distances, more rest, and a more micro-based analysis of the statistical information of each mountain climb.

So, we carried on, spending time in more towns than we had planned, spending more money than we would have liked, but overall enjoying the trip. When the trail challenges us most, we often, shortly thereafter, find reward.

We took a day off in Salida where we realized how much we missed other cyclists and spent most of our time getting to know and talking bikes with Chris and Harry, who traveled from the UK to ride the Colorado Trail.

From Salida we rode our first major pass, Marshall Pass, and crossed over the Continental Divide. The weather, the colors, and the terrain seemed to simultaneously change upon our descent into Sargents. We were also entering Gunnison National Forest, notorious for being “big country,” as a local put it, refering to the vast, desolate land, cooler moist temperatures, and ever present winds. We spent three days, and two nights riding the 133 mile route from Salida to Lake City. Living up to its reputation, the weather we experienced was grey, wet, and windy, offering long slow days in the saddle, cold restless evenings, and later starting mornings. We pushed ahead, knowing that Lake City and all of its majestic beauty lie ahead. Sure enough, on our final day, the sun came out, warming us up, and illuminating the brilliant change in the fall foliage. We enjoyed a rugged and colorful ride up Slumgullion Pass (11,200 ft. elevation), and a speedy twisting descent into Lake City where we would fill our bellies and rest up to tackle our most challenging high elevation climbs over Engineer Pass and Imogene Pass.

One thing is sure, the deeper into this route we get, the more difficult the terrain becomes, and everything we have done along the way prepares us mentally and physically for the next big challenge. Since the first day of researching this route, we learned that these high elevation mountain passes would be some of the most difficult terrain features we would experience on the entire route. The technical, steep riding we did through the Ozarks, the mental challenge of riding across Oklahoma, and the gradual introduction to Colorado’s Rocky Mountains have all played an integral role in training us for these mountain passes. We tackled the passes one day at a time, back-to-back. Our experience went a little like this…

Engineer Pass

Total distance from Lake City to Ouray: 35 miles

Elevation gain in 18 miles: 4,300 feet

Peak elevation: 13,000 feet

The road conditions of the 18-mile climb were smooth and easy, allowing us to soak up the views of crystal clear, trout filled streams, the remnants of old mining operations, and incredibly colorful mountainscapes. We took our time, stopping to snap a photo and to explore. As we rode closer to the top, the grade grew steeper, but was manageable. Now that I think back on all the times I have been at high elevation, I have not been so high as 13,000 ft., especially not on a bicycle. To have ridden our bicycles there, not only just from Lake City, but from the coast of North Carolina, inspired an emotion inside of me that is hard to describe. We are travelling over a continent experiencing drastic cultural and geological change at a slow enough pace to experience a level of immersion, but quickly enough to experience the shock of differences. The descent from Engineer Pass was drastically different. Technical, steep, rocky terrain swept us downhill. Many sections were so complex that we paused to evaluate potential lines of travel that we would take. Once again, I put my feet to work, by hiking down some sections I wasn’t willing to risk, while Tom conquered what appeared to be impossible. We had fun all the way and enjoyed the hell out of the terrain, putting all of our equipment to the test and coming out relatively unscathed (with the exception of a small, impact related {Tom} sidewall cut, and our first flat in 3,000 miles).

Imogene Pass

Total distance from Ouray to Telluride: 18 miles

Elevation gain in 9 miles: 5,000 feet

Peak elevation: 13,200 feet

Imogene Pass was a different story. I remember when we were in Salida, I was showing Harry the statistics of our upcoming climbs. I got to Imogene’s statistics and we looked at eachother perplexed. Those numbers can’t be right, I thought, I must have done the math wrong. I also recall saying something along the lines of, “If we had to go up Engineer Pass, the way we went down, I don’t think we would have been able.” We knew what was ahead, we knew it had taken motorbikes two hours to go 20 miles, but we weren’t talking about it. What’s the use? Well… After we had gone 1.5 miles in almost one hour, reality set in and we knew that this climb and descent would likely take us more time than the day prior, at half the distance. Why? It was steep, rocky, and loose (a lot like the descent of Engineer Pass. The higher up we got, the more we walked. Some sections were so steep our feet could not retain traction so we used our bikes and brakes as leverage. We put our Teva sandals on and hiked in those for a while. On one occasion, while pushing up a steep slope, Tom lost his footing, and dropped his bike. This was tough, but there were plenty of people around us in 4WD off-road vehicles to laugh at us, cheer us on, and comiserate with the seeming insanity of what we were doing. We made it through and being over 13,000 ft. in elevation with your bicycle does not get old. The descent was much like Engineer, only steeper, which meant some walking, but considerably less than the way up. Despite it’s difficulty, we have grown fond of high mountain riding and the views don’t suck either!

That’s it for now! We took a day of in Telluride and stayed with hosts who have generously allowed us to stay in their home while they are away. It happens that Telluride’s Blues and Brews festival is occurring now, which we have been able to enjoy from their balcony. Thank you Max and Hillary!
We hit the road again tomorrow as we make our way to Moab, Utah!

If you aren’t already, follow us on instagram ( for almost daily updates. We update our Flickr album with some extra photos as well (

Thanks for following along!

A Perfect Mess

by Mary Karr

For David Freedman

I read somewhere that if   pedestrians didn’t break traffic laws to cross
Times Square whenever and by whatever means possible, the whole city
would stop, it would stop.
Cars would back up to Rhode Island,
an epic gridlock not even a cat
could thread through. It’s not law but the sprawl
of our separate wills that keeps us all flowing. Today I loved
the unprecedented gall
of the piano movers, shoving a roped-up baby grand up
Ninth Avenue before a thunderstorm.
They were a grim and hefty pair, cynical
as any day laborers. They knew what was coming,
the instrument white lacquered, the sky bulging black
as a bad water balloon and in one pinprick instant
it burst. A downpour like a fire hose.
For a few heartbeats, the whole city stalled,
paused, a heart thump, then it all went staccato.
And it was my pleasure to witness a not
insignificant miracle: in one instant every black
umbrella in Hell’s Kitchen opened on cue, everyone
still moving. It was a scene from an unwritten opera,
the sails of some vast armada.
And four old ladies interrupted their own slow progress
to accompany the piano movers.
Each holding what might have once been
lace parasols over the grunting men. I passed next
the crowd of pastel ballerinas huddled
under the corner awning,
in line for an open call — stork-limbed, ankles
zigzagged with ribbon, a few passing a lit cigarette
around. The city feeds on beauty, starves
for it, breeds it. Coming home after midnight,
to my deserted block with its famously high
subway-rat count, I heard a tenor exhale pure
longing down the brick canyons, the steaming moon
opened its mouth to drink from on high …

anonymous asked:

So, now that NGCS is over, do you know any 'similar' fics to fill the emptyness ;( ?

well, NGCS is a very special sort of fic, but i have a few brilliant fics(some of similar style) that are really a brilliant read, and ongoing.

Fides et Veritas  by Magnolie , I think, is the one that’s most similar to NGST in the way that it is a modern au, there are teachers involved and also it’s brilliantly written. It updates regularly and is perfectly in-character. Plus, Modern Thorin in a suit. Yum.

Prayers to Broken Stone by Avelera, is nothing like NGST plot-wise, but you can bet it’s a brilliant and well-written read. Not to mention, it has a very original take on the dragon sickness… It’s really an exciting and wonderful read to follow!

How the West Was Won and Where It Got Us by stickman, another modern au. This one is actually like nothing I have read before in a fanfic. It’s really good. It’s written in a fashion that has a few time-skips, so it might take one or two chapters to get used to, but it’s worth it. Give it a shot.

and then of course, two of the the fandom’s favourite time-travel fix it fics:

A Shot in the Dark by Silver_Pup, completely brilliant, filled to the brim with action, slow-build romance, awkward Thorin and Bilbo being badass as fuck instead of being tossed around by Thorin like a ragdoll. Go Bilbo!

An Expected Journey by MarieJacquelyn, a long(really long) and very very good read. This fic promises “sex death and violence” in its tags, and it does keep its word indeed. It also, however, has a lot of beautiful and very painful angst, and is generally considered a dagger of feels straight to the feels gland.

Wedding Bells

Characters: Peter Parker x Reader
Words: 860
Warnings: none
Prompt: Can you write a Peter Parker imagine where the reader is helping plan someone’s wedding and he hears how excited she is and realizes that he wants to marry her one day? (requests are open)

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