steve has helpfully illustrated what storytime looks like on my end.
Mod Hell: Do you guys want me to start archiving asks and answers–the long ones–on AO3? There’s not really a consistent tag for them and there’s getting to be a lot. If you guys are good with them in blog form, I’ll just leave them as is, but I’m happy to copy-paste them over if you’d like.
THERE’S GOING TO BE A LOT MORE OF THIS :D. because what is self control. [enabling intensifies].
Victor spends four months appearing at malls, smiling on local talk shows—and in one case—dropping by a client’s niece’s sweet sixteen to wave and smile and wink until his jaw hurt. And, sadly, it wasn’t even from anything fun.
Finally out of respect for everyone else’ s thresholds for Forlorn Sigh Paired With Distant Longing Looks, Yakov caves. And Victor sees Yuuri Katsuki again one hundred and twenty seven days after their first meeting at the Three Bridges Tri-County Charity Walk-Off-A-Thon.
If you could call refusing a selfie a meeting.
(Victor absolutely called it a meeting.)
Yuuri arrives on set while Victor’s still in make-up, but Victor notices him the moment he walks onto the set. Hand in his pockets, he scurries past the helicopter, past fake fireplace, and past the giant anthropomorphic snowflake that someone in production design really should have shut down.
Victor glances at the empty chair next to his, leg twitching. He can name the exact second Yuuri sees him, because a flush blooms on the soft curve of his cheeks. Adorable.
Victor beams, and his loosely tied robe just happens to fall open as he stands up. No one can prove he did it on purpose. At least not with evidence that will hold up in court.
“Yuuri! Staring today we’ll be shooting this catalogue together. Aren’t you excited? ” He says, punctuating it with a wink he’s never flashed the camera.
Yuuri gapes and then runs.
Victor’s smile falls, just like his dick. Should he not have waxed?
My uni friend married a local YouTuber and Instagram model that he discovered because his little sister made him watch one make up tutorial with her and he’s weak for his little sister.
What are the odds that a lawyer would run into the YouTuber at court because it was her friend’s Bar Council admission date and the same friend turned out to be his firm’s intern for the past 9 months.
This Is Us- Chapter 23-
Full Court Press- Part One
Catch up on earlier chapters - Chapter 22 -Three Ravens here ; Chapter 21- The Minister’s Cat here ; Master Fanfiction List here
Very NSFW (under the cut below)
The first photograph appeared in a local blog highlighting last week’s fundraiser for Claire’s hospital. The event was a charity ball that Slainte had agreed to sponsor before Jamie had even met Claire. They arrived separately, sat at the same table but Joe and Gayle were interspaced between them. He hadn’t been paying her undue attention. There was nothing overt in the setup that might have made them take extra precautions.
Claire looked beautiful in a simple black dress and peek-a-boo pumps. They’d each gotten up at various times to mingle through the crowd during the course of the evening. He’d wanted to stay at her side but he resisted that urge. Jamie was aware of the unconscious pull of her, drawing his eye again and again whenever she was near. But he couldn’t help that, he’d have a better chance defeating gravity.
She knew almost everyone in the room, it seemed to Jamie. He overheard more than one person complimenting her skill or thanking her for her care of them or a family member.
Joe had taken up the task of introducing their sponsor to all the board members, patrons and important staff. Jamie charmed them, danced with everyone from shy administrators to avaricious wives. Having dispatched his duties, he was free to finally ask her to dance without raising any eyebrows. At least, that had been the hope. He’d been itching to have Claire in his arms all evening. It was a slow one and Jamie meant to enjoy every second of it. Looking at the picture, he clearly had.
“It wouldna help to tell ye that yer a muckle sized clot-heid. What’s done is done.” Murtagh concluded as he clicked through to show him.
A sea of mmphms went around the room as Ian, Fergus and then finally Jamie looked their fill.
“Well, at least it’s a decent picture of you both.” Offered Fergus.
Ian smiled at his brother in law and Jamie shrugged. It was a beautiful picture, in any other context.
He and Claire were pressed up against each other, quite striking as the lights glowed behind them. One of her hands was resting on his shoulder and the other held firmly in his, snuggled up against his heart. A warm embrace to be sure and maybe that would have gone unnoticed save for the look of rampant desire and adoration in both their eyes.
Jamie, as it turned out, had been looking at a lot of pictures lately. He was putting together a slideshow for Ian and Jenny. This coming weekend was their tenth anniversary and to celebrate they were hosting a dinner. Very small, family only. But that would include Ian’s parents, John and Margaret Murray.
Jamie was looking forward to getting away with Claire. They’d each juggled their schedules and taken a week off, starting tomorrow. It had been the best summer of his life in many ways but not a restful one. He missed the simple pleasures of swimming and hiking around Lallybroch, wanted to show Faith all the things his own parents had done with them when he was a lad.
It would also ease his sister’s mind, he knew, if he were there while she and Ian took off for a couple of days to Paris alone. Though, it wasn’t really necessary. Laoghaire, John and Meg would be there, too. This further widened the circle around Faith of those who knew the story. But the Murrays had known Jamie and Jenny their whole lives and stood as particular friends to Brian and Ellen.
As part of the slide show, Jamie wanted to include pictures of Faith. He’d asked Claire what she had that he could use. Claire shared her digital album. The folder contained about three hundred pictures of Faith but only two dozen of Claire herself growing up.
There were three of Claire with her mother, all taken somewhere between the toddler and preschool years. Her mother was quite beautiful. Lithe and feminine. In the black and white saturation, Jamie got only a hint of what her natural coloring would be. There was a gap with no pictures from Claire’s infancy and none of her father at all.
Then starting at about the first grade time period, several pictures appeared with Claire and a gentleman he assumed was Lamb. Yet none were taken in a conventional English setting. The backgrounds varied, he saw desert landscapes, mountainous regions and lush forests. In some pictures it was just Claire, in others she was part of larger groups. In her teenaged years she looked slightly uncomfortable caught in the camera’s lens.
There was a picture of Claire on what had to be her wedding day to Frank judging by the boutonnieres in his and Lamb’s lapels. She looked heartbreakingly young and …. happy. Radiant if he allowed himself to be honest. He tried not to focus too much on the ones of her life with Frank but he couldn’t seem to help himself. Jamie rolled through these quickly, slowing down near the end of the folder.
There was one picture of Frank holding a positive pregnancy test, grinning from ear to ear. One of Claire’s flat belly with an ultrasound wand rolling in goop and, in the distance, a computer monitor too far away to show anything. Sadly, she seemed to have only of herself really pregnant. It was of her and Gayle at some reception. He loved how clearly the picture showed the outline of her beautiful belly, fabric stretched tight.
“Da, I’m done!” Faith announced coming into the living room trailed by Adso.
“Ah. Did ye remember to fill the water dish?” Jamie inquired.
Faith gestured to her wet pants where she clearly spilled water in the attempt.
“Uh-huh.” She confirmed.
Jamie smiled and turned her show on, conveniently allowing him to finish up the project for Jenny and Ian.
He copied six of Claire’s pictures for what he needed and added a few more he’d taken of the three of them, of Claire and Faith at Lallybroch and of himself and Faith as well. Then it hit him. He ran through the pictures one more time to be sure. There were almost no pictures of just Claire and Faith between the time she was born and the time he met them. Every other picture was Faith alone or together with other people. He recognized Joe, some of the other children at the daycare, a terrific one with the nurses in the NICU.
He felt again that sudden fury at Frank Randall, no doubt exacerbated by seeing proof of the fact that at one point in time, he’d made her happy and they’d built a life together. Jamie knew it was irrational but he also knew his feelings arose from more than just jealousy. How would his daughter feel when she looked back as an adult and had such a spartan record of her own beginning?
He transferred all the pictures he had to Claire’s folder and then immediately ordered a real photo book for Claire full of the best pictures from both of their collections. Jamie vowed to do a better job creating such memories in the future, helping Claire tell Faith the story of her family.
He was just finishing up when his phone started pinging. When he counted five in quick succession he knew something had happened. With a sense of dread he opened the text.
Slainte Founder Dating Mystery Woman
Jamie Fraser, Entrepreneur of the Year, Done Playing the Field?
Who’s That Girl Woman?
His heart sank. All three of the biggest papers had the photo. The last headline was from The Daily Mirror, with a Jack Randall byline and trotted out a chorus line of the sweet young things that were, prior to meeting Claire, his “go to” choice for public appearances. They were all from a local modeling agency that Slainte had a reciprocal marketing agreement with. The headline was deliberately baiting but if he were honest, Jamie would admit there was some truth to it.
The women were usually around ten years younger than he. That had more to do with the fact that models started careers in their late teens and early twenties and not due to any preferences of his. Jamie had never dated a single one of the ladies he was paired up with. Usually the arrangement was a two-four appearance deal with the model. It worked well. There was never any expectation of a real relationship and the press scrutiny was never an invasion of privacy since both parties wanted the exposure.
Jamie “read” all three of the articles, each less than 100 words and then sent a couple of texts out to Fergus and Murtagh concerning “damage control.” It was a very good thing they would be leaving in the morning and out of town for awhile.
Jamie was already making dinner by the time he realized he hadn’t warned Claire about the articles. If anyone had contacted the papers tipping them to her identity, she’d be caught unaware. He tried calling but her phone went right to VM. He sent a text and an email. Shit!
As dinner baked away in the oven, Jamie did his best not dwell on the fact that he hadn’t heard from Claire. He didn’t get worried until the food was cooked, oven off and Faith started to complain about being hungry. He grabbed crackers and a sweater.
“Come mo nighean, let’s take a ride and go your mother.”
Jamie opened the door, ushering Faith out in front of him. He crashed into her less than ten steps with an “Omph!” throwing his hand out to keep her on her feet.
Jamie spun his head following Faith’s line of sight.
Claire was in a crouch position, scrambling quickly to her feet and wiping her eyes as she rose. He watched as she forced a smile on her face.
“Oh, Faith. How are you?” Her voice sounded unnaturally loud and patently chipper and she would not look at him.
So, She’d seen the headlines. His stomach curdled. As gently as a man holding nitroglycerin, Jamie carefully ushered her into the flat.
“We were going to come get you, I’m hungry!” Faith told her.
“Well, then let’s go see what Da has made for supper.” Claire deliberately kept abreast of Faith, forcing Jamie to silently follow in their wake.
As he entered the kitchen Claire’s back was to him getting the food served. When she turned around her expression was grim and her eyes had a haunted look to them. He took the plates from her hands, placed Faith’s down, then theirs.
“Dinna stand on ceremony, Faith, dig in.” He instructed her then spun back quick as lightning and grabbed the countertop behind Claire. Neatly trapped, she was forced to stand still.
Jamie brought his head in close to her and whispered, “I’m sorry, Claire.”
She had a moment of clarity when she realized what he’d been thinking. She felt the soothing warmth of his body next to hers and moved her arms behind her, palming the backs of his hands in her own, leaning her body into his.
Joined, hands to hearts, Jamie’s nervous system relaxed instantly. He pressed his arms tight to her as her fingers squeezed his. She notched her chin against his shoulder.
“Not your fault.” She told him.
He sighed audibly and kissed the side of her head.
“Are you ok?” Jamie pulled back, wanting to look at her face.
Claire gave him a soft half-smile. “Later,” she promised.
Jamie had always been impressed with Claire’s ability to shelf the day’s troubles and focus on Faith. She engaged in small talk and kept Faith chattering away through the meal. She barely touched her food, though and her smile never reached her eyes.
Just as they were finishing up the landline rang. It was a shrill and unwelcome sound. Faith leapt from her chair and bolted for the handset.
“No Faith, don’t!” Claire exclaimed.
She shot Jamie a panicked look and ran after their daughter. She wasn’t quick enough, Faith was bringing the phone to her ear and Claire visibly reacted to the sound of the voice on the other end. She made a sudden grab of the handset and kept pulling until the phone detached from its mooring in a puff of drywall, leaving a mark in it’s wake. Faith let up a huge wail, badly frightened. Somewhere in the distance, she heard the phone start to ring again.
“Don’t answer it.” Claire said as she dropped down by Faith to offer her some comfort.
Jamie was half listening to Claire’s soothing apologies to Faith, but he was intent on getting to the bedroom phone to play back the message.
“Dr. Randall, I know you are there. We both know you are hiding something. My cousin gave me all your contact info. You know how persistent I can be.” A pause and then in a much harsher tone he heard, “You also know that the truth carries a weight no lie can counterfeit. Either you can cooperate with me, or I shall be forced to use methods less pleasant than talk. Call me back.” He rattled off a series of numbers which Jamie didn’t bother to write down. Black Jack Randall. So he and Frank were related.
Jamie’s hands were involuntarily clenched in a tight fist. Fucking bastard! He forced himself to relax and uncurl his fingers. He walked into the hall and, seeing Claire occupied with Faith in the kitchen, quietly shut the door and placed a series of phone calls himself.
Faith was helping Claire at the sink but Jamie could see her hands were shaking as they passed the dishes under the faucet. He plucked the plate from her hands and turned the water off. As they made eye contact she shook her head imperceptibly. She wasn’t up to talking.
He held her gaze then announced, “Faith, lass change of plans. We’re going to surprise Uncan and Aunt Jenny by driving up to Lallybroch tonight. Can you make sure to put Adso’s toys in that wee bag in your room?” Faith’s eyes got big and she let out a shout of glee.
“Adso and Kitty and Maggie!” Faith ran off to do as he asked.
The second Faith was down the hall, Claire’s body slumped into him and she let out a grateful sigh.
“Sassenach?” He ventured. “Just get yer things together. Faith is all packed up and I dinna need much. I’ll get started on loading the car.”
At our most recent meet up I had the pleasure of speaking with Tim M who is a local scale modeler that does a bit of everything. He brought his 1/24 scale custom car that he did. The weathering on this thing is simply amazing. I was in pure awe when looking at this and just had so many questions about it.
We had a good hour or so long conversation talking about techniques that are used for car and military scale modeling to even the IPMS competition scene and some of the contests he has been too. Learning so much about weathering and the hobby overall was a pure joy. Most of my current builds have been weathered and while I want to do some nice clean builds, builds like this get me really excited to see and are such an inspiration to start building more.
We should really look outside the “genre” of Gunpla and take some notes from some of the sci-fi, horror, car and military modelers. There are so many techniques that we can apply to the kits that we make that could really expand our skills and imagination. I hope you all enjoy these images of this insane build and you keep trying new stuff with your builds!