locally-made

Fellow members of the autistic community

I’m at my local library and they’ve made a display for autism awareness month. This is a well meant effort, but… 

As you can see, they’ve gone with the “autism speaks” motif. This is somewhat distressing for me, especially since I usually come here to de-stress. I’m going to write a letter for the library about why this is offensive to me as an autistic person, but I don’t want them to think it’s just me wigging out about it, so if you all would be so kind I’d appreciate it if you could reblog this post and add your own thoughts on autism speaks and the symbols of their organisation. I’m going to print off as many responses as I can and hand them over to the library along with the letter. 

Thanks so much for your time, and I hope you all have a good autism awareness month

ok but picture this: a local cafe specifically made for & ran by witches filled with plants and crystals. just a general safe place to study/interact with other witches in the area in a super casual setting. not only do they sell food/drink but also have a library overflowing with books about witchcraft. they would host a mini market after hours on weekends made up of local witchy art/crafts so we can all support & celebrate eachothers part in the community.

How To Blend Cultures (Without Making Impossible Mixes)

This is a guide specifically about fantasy worldbuilding. WWC gets a lot of questions around “I’m mixing two cultures together, how do I do that?” and this is to explain both how to do that and when you very much should not.

For starters, you should avoid blending empires with their surrounding properties, especially if there is recent political strife along those lines. This is why Japan/China/Korea (or even China/Tibet) mixes should not be done. For more information on that, take a look at Research:Large to Small Scale, Avoiding Homogenizing East Asian Cultures, & Paralleling Regions Appropriately.

Next up, mixing Greece/Rome with far-flung cultures gets a little bit eyebrow raising. Unless it was a direct trading partner/conquered property, Greek/Roman cultures do not mix with non-European cultures. The Greek empire only went to the Northern regions of India at its very peak, and that is limited to the ancient world. Rome stopped in the Middle East, so, again, you don’t have the cultural backing for a mixing of anything outside of its borders. 

Depictions of Rome and Greece in ancient literature shows other ancient cultures found them quite backwards, and were adverse to mixing with them. By many standards they were very backwards, and it’s only Europe (and, as an extension, America) that revered them to the extent they do. Asia and Africa had no reason to see them as advanced, because they made many more technological advancements than either. North America and Oceanic cultures hardly interacted with either, and had both their own technological advancements+ cultures closer by to borrow advancements from, instead. 

Outside of that, cultures are born out of the environments that made them. As a result, places with wildly dissimilar climates and resources pools will not be able to blend harmoniously unless you’re taking a modern analogue society where globalism has happened. This is plain old because resources only travel so far, and people are more likely to build culture around resources they have easy access to (even well-established trade links can lead to people re-creating things: Han purple and Egyptian blue point to an ancient trade link, but they were made with local materials processed differently).

Roman architecture exists because the Romans had access to copious amounts of concrete materials/marble and lived in the Mediterranean, which got very hot summers, heavy rains, and not a whole lot of cold. As a result they created structures that worked for this, which included open airways, pillars, easy to clean floors, shade, and ventilation. Places that lack these resources will not be able to replicate Rome.

Their resource pool was very specific to their regions, and there’s a reason Rome had the rule that anybody who did’t live like Romans were slaves: it was really hard to live like a Roman, and they wanted their slave pool as large as possible. 

Different cultures with different resources formed in wildly different ways, and might not even have anything similar to Greece or Rome. Because of this, you need to look really close at why culture developed the way it did. If it’s because they had extremely dissimilar resources pools, it’s wise to not blend the cultures (or at least not think they’ll look anything like their original cultures) 

Which brings me to value systems. Cultures put value on different things. Each culture ends up with a base philosophy for what they esteem and how they use resources, which proceeds to influence how it develops. Architecture has meaning to it. So does what colours you use in different applications. Because these things are sacred and/or practical for certain social orders. “Sacred” in cultures ends up becoming a shorthand for “this ritual helps us survive.”

There is no such thing as “aesthetic” when you get down to the root of each single item, because that aesthetic has a practical purpose. There is also no such thing as a “solely religious reason” under the same logic. Cows have become sacred in most varieties of Hinduism— because cows (and oxen) have been the main farming animal in the Indian subcontinent for millennia. They provide milk for sustenance, power for ploughing fields, and dung, which can be used as a floor polish and, when dried, a source of fuel for fire that gives off a more even heat than wood. As a single provider for crucial elements of agrarian life, their sacredness developed from their practicality. Having cows roam freely meant absolutely everyone could have access to an efficient cooking fuel.

Chinese brush painting has meaning. Jade sculpture has meaning. Pagodas and sloped roofs and gates have meaning. The philosophy, environment, history, and present circumstances of a culture is built into every. single. little. thing. about that culture, meaning you cannot just change it out.

Unless you learn the very root of culture, their values and stigmas and honours and shames, you cannot modify it accurately. Cultures survive because that was the best way to respond to the world at the time. A long-standing culture such as China’s has to be functional and incredibly well suited for the environment, otherwise it would not have survived. There is something about Chinese culture that works extraordinarily well for it to perpetuate itself, and you cannot disrespect that.

Learn the “why” of culture. Learn how it came to manifest and the reasons behind its manifestations. Study the geography and resources available to the people at hand. Know a culture so well you can explain how it works in real life and how your world’s history parallels the circumstances that created a similar culture in fantasy.

Only then will you be able to pull it off with respect.

~ Mod Lesya

psychic: *reads my mind*

me: to days of inspiration playing hooky making something out of nothing the need to express to communicate to going against the grain going insane going maAAAAAAd to loving tension no pension to mOre than one dimension to starving for attention hating convention not to mention of course hating dear old mom and dAAAAAAAAd to riding your bike midday past the three-piece suits to frUIts to no absolutes to absolut to choice to the village voiiiice to aNY PASSING FAD to being an us for once instead oF A THEEEEEM LA VIE BOHEEEEEEEME !!!! LA VIE BOHEME !!! hey mIster shes my sister so thats five miso soup four seaweed salad three soy burger dinner two tofu dog platter and one pasta with meatless balls ew it tastes the same if you close your eyes and thirteen orders of fries is that it here WINE AND BEER to hAnd crafted bEErs made in local brEwerIEs to yoga to yoghurt to rice and beans and cheese to leather to dildos to curry vindaloo to huevos rancheros and maya angelou emotion devotion to causing a commotion ceation vacation MUCHO MASTURBATION

psychic: what the fuck

Lemon Sage Honey!
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Great for sore throats, coughs, and colds.
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Honey is my go to for medicine. It’s sweet, it’s wholesome, and it’s so beneficial!
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Lemon and sage are a great combo to add to make it tasty and healthy and help you fight the nasties!
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Recipe:
1c honey
1/2c lemon juice
2 tsp fresh sage or 4 tsp dried
Bring to a simmer.
Put a lid on it!
Take off heat and let sit 10min.
Strain.
Label and date!
Store in fridge up to a month or so.
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Thanks #thrivemarket !
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#honey #sage #lemon #medicine #health #wellness #cold #flu #cough #syrup #infusion #homemade #happy #body #medical #local #shop #sales #beauty

Since it aired, I’ve felt uncomfortable with Harry’s statements about equality in the Quotidien interview and the resulting posts/articles about it, but I needed to step back and figure out WHY it made me feel that way.  There was something about his language that immediately rubbed me the wrong way and to see how his statements have been used as some kind of great moment of activism has only added to my discomfort.

As a human rights worker, I spend every day trying to raise awareness and understanding of rights, to ensure that they are implemented properly in my country, and to establish effective forms of redress when there are rights violations.  At the core of my value base is a belief in social justice, equality and non-discrimination, human dignity and human rights.  In my ideal world, these would be fundamental truths for all people, but I recognise that, despite living in a relatively wealthy, developed nation, these are simply not realities for a large section of the population.  The children and families I work with are facing poverty, mental health issues, family breakdown, discrimination, immigration difficulties, violence, trauma and neglect.  For them, the idea of equality is directly connected to politics.  The decisions made at local and national levels impact directly on their day-to-day experiences and their ability to ensure that their basic needs are met.

By stating that equality is something removed from politics, Harry demonstrated his privilege.  As a wealthy and influential white man, he has privilege that allows him to remove himself from the political discourse of inequality and discrimination that define the lives of many others.  That is not to say that Harry has not faced issues like those I mentioned above, but he has resources and connections that others can only dream of so that he doesn’t need to make his ‘fundamental’ beliefs about politics.  

To me, his statement was not inspirational or demonstrative of a greater passion for and awareness of the issues that are impacting on our society today.  It came across as a vague, ill-informed platitude, and when it is being used to generate headlines, it demonstrates just how low the bar is set for him.  Celebrities often use their status as a platform to raise awareness of causes or issues that are important to them.  They are able to speak in specifics, demonstrating a deeper, more nuanced understanding of the topic.  This is not what happened at Quotidien.  In between a series of ‘ums’ and ‘I don’t knows’, Harry cobbled together a sentence to avoid a question he wasn’t comfortable answering. 

This was not an example of activism.  It was an example of not being aware of one’s own privilege.  I would call out my friends and colleagues for making similar vague, ignorant statements, so I won’t hesitate to do so when a celebrity does it, especially when the fandom is holding it up as something to be applauded.  I felt Harry’s statement was dismissive of the reality of people’s lived experience.  Equality is directly connected to politics (and Politics).  Ignoring that only makes the issues we face more difficult to overcome.

A genre-punk dictionary
  • Cyberpunk - Neon lights, mechanical body-horror, lots and lots of electronic junk lying around, tightly confined city slums, flying cars, androids, and last but not least, lots of grungy browns and grays. Bladerunner, Judge Dredd, Bubblegum Crisis etc.
  • Dieselpunk - Similar to cyberpunk, but less about electronics and androids and more about internal combustion and industrial robots. Technology is less ubiquitous in this setting but when you see techology, it will be combustion powered in some way… or at least look like it should be. Expect grease stains and bits of sludge on everything. Final Fantasy VII (the original game only) is a prime example.
  • Laserpunk - The Anti-Cyberpunk. Spotless with a lot of legroom. Expect glowing lines, fancy grooves, bright white glossy walls, and some shiny blues on everything. Everything in this setting has something that glows, even when it doesn’t need it. These are your Xenosaga’s, iRobot’s, Star Ocean’s.
  • Garbagepunk - The kludgey cousin of steampunk. Everything in this setting, and I mean EVERY SINGLE THING, is made of trash. Goggles made of bottles, water filtration made of old oil drums and used coffee filters, etc. Mad Max, Deponia, Water World, etc.
  • Steampunk - Steam power, leatherbound handles, brass fittings, lots of circles and rivets. I shouldn’t have to really clarify this one.
  • Clockpunk - Steampunk but with clockworks instead of steam engines. Its a small difference, listed only for the reason that steampunk requires steam and clockpunk doesn’t always have it. Expect gears, cogs, wheels and springs.
  • Codepunk - This one is difficult to pin down. Its less about the aesthetic and more about the concepts. This is a setting where everything that happens is related in some way to programming… Where the laws of physics are just functions being run with parameters, alterable by anyone with knowledge of how to access them. This is a setting where people do battle by compiling text that subtracts a number from the other person’s vital statistics variables, but that is what the world is actually made of, not just a game abstraction. Codepunk is characterized by parts of the world actually breaking down visibly into raw text. .hack//, Fate/Extra, the parts of the Matrix series we don’t get to watch where someone is actually typing on a keyboard to make things actually happen…( not that Neo-Morpheus crap. )
  • Naturepunk - What happens when you invent modern or even futuristic technology without actually using any technology. Reclining armchairs made of sticks and moss. Aeroplane’s made of palm fronds and vines. If cavemen invented space travel. Everything is made of locally sourced natural components, but the level of technological advancement and sophistication isn’t necessarily diminished because of it. You might have all the classic weapons of war, guns and grenades and such, but made of curious growths. Mushrooms with highly flammable spores for example, instead of a grenade. While not the only example, the best I can actually think of is… The Flintstones. You might also consider many depictions of Atlantis under this category.
  • Biopunk - Naturepunk’s heavy metal big sister. Everything is made of bone, meat, blood and teeth. Everything is either alive, or was alive at one time. Technology is either made of raw carcasses, or is actually some creature bred or engineered specifically to be used in the way a machine would. Don’t expect to see much inorganic material in generally anything. eXistenZ, generally anything that takes place inside another organism.

image credit

Hello naughty children, I am going to talk about “psychotic breakdowns” in the P5 localization, and the fact that it’s a (very big) mistranslation that could mess up your perception of a fair amount of things in the game. (also, the fact that “psychotic breakdowns” and “mental shutdowns” are different things).

As usual, post is pretty long & screenshot heavy.

Keep reading

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In 1890, Sir Thomas Lipton arrived on the island of Ceylon, now Sri Lanka, to purchase a plot of land that would become the first tea estate in his global tea empire. These days, in the Ambadandegama Valley located just a few miles from Lipton’s original estate, another experiment in tea production is unfolding.

Tucked into the side of a precipitous mountain, Amba Estate is a tea operation that shares 10 percent of its revenues with its workers. That’s a novel approach here in Sri Lanka, a country that’s one of the world’s largest exporters of tea — an industry that employs more than 1 million of its 22 million residents.

“What makes us different is our 10 percent revenue share — not profit share. We decided to do revenue share because even when we’re not making a profit, we felt it was only right that workers and management receives recognition,” says Simon Bell.

Bell purchased the 26-acre Amba Estate in 2006 with three partners – all of whom had previously worked in international development. Their goal, he says, was to create a for-profit social enterprise that could create long-term employment in the region. “It’s thanks to the hard work and innovation [of the workers] that we’ve grown revenue 20 fold over the last few years.”

The estate employs 30 full-time workers from the local village. One elderly Tamil couple resides on the property itself. They had lived in an old line house, a structure built to house tea workers during the days of British rule, since long before Bell and his partners purchased the land. “We didn’t know if they had anywhere else to go,” says Bell. “They asked to stay and we were happy to let them.”

PHOTOS: In Sri Lanka’s Tea Paradise, A Social Enterprise Is Brewing

Photos: Victoria Milko for NPR

Writing Series #6: Worldbuilding

When I went to speak with a group of high school writers (the event that prompted this “series”,  almost all of them asked me about “worldbuilding.” Wikipedia defines worldbuilding as “the process of constructing an imaginary world, sometimes associated with a whole fictional universe;” I define it as that thing I always forget to do. 

Worldbuilding is particularly important if you write fantasy because in a completely made up universe, everything is up to you: there are no pre-established rules. You event the landscape, the towns, the people, the hierarchies, the leadership. You are god. 

But for all of the realistic fiction writers out there, world building is a little different. It’s certainly less overwhelming, definitely takes less memorization, but it does have more rules. The question I always find myself asking is: do I base this story in a real town, or do I make it up?

What I’ve found to be the best solution is a mix of both: I choose a town I am familiar with, and I base my “fake town” off of it. This means I can add in a grocery store that doesn’t exist, a local pool that was never built, and, of course, if I want to talk about how terrible a place is, I don’t have to defame a real location. 

The advice “write what you know” is probably the most prominent in settings, which is why it’s so common to find all of an author’s books set in the same location (or coincidentally in all the different locations that author has lived in throughout their life). The way I see it, there are so many other things I need to keep track of (like character arcs, plots, actually writing) that I don’t have the patience to also research and learn new places, but for some writers, this is the best part, the chance to escape the place they know and go anywhere in the world via their writing. 

If you fall into this second category, here are a few rules of thumb:

  • Just because a place is “foreign” to you, does not mean it is to everyone, so please don’t treat your setting (especially if it’s in a different country) as “exotic” (as this can often come across as a fetishization of a race, people, culture, or land). It’s also, frankly, just less realistic. If your character lives in that place you desperately want to live in, they’re not going to see it every day with the wide eyes and fascination that you, the author, have. They’re going to complain that the drug store on the corner isn’t open and bitch about the weather. (This is different, of course, if your character is a newbie in this land and visiting, if they are seeing it for the first time; then the wonder and first impressions are valid to express.)
  • It might help to get a map. Finding a city website will also help (there you’ll find information about parks and rec, town history, libraries, public buildings, etc.). But being able to actually visualize the place will you allow to drop your character into that setting with a better idea of what will really be surrounding them. If you can visit the place even better! But what’s important is to get a street view one way or another, an idea of what it looks like to the left, right, forward, and back of where your character will be standing. Will they see hills on the horizon, just above the buildings’ tops? Is there a skyline? Is the air cool or muggy? What amenities does the town have? What is the wild life like? (Don’t write a squirrel into the scene, for example if there aren’t any in that climate.) 
  • Don’t let the setting hold you back. If there is no city on Earth that has everything in it that you need for your story to take place, it’s okay to make a place up. Just make sure that place has its own set of rules that make sense and add up logically (don’t say it’s a town of 300 people and then give it a strip mall, for example–that sort of thing would never be built for that population).
  • Keep track of your location! Whether your setting is real or made up (in which case you should keep a folder of your notes and maybe a hand drawn map), you should have something (a map, a list of places, a picture, etc.) to refer back to while writing. In order to keep the surroundings consistent, I find myself constantly scrolling up to an earlier moment in the story; I can never remember if I made the local park have a purple slide or blue. It sounds silly, but it’s all in the details, and the more accessible you can make this information, the easier a time you’ll have later (and the less time you’ll spend editing).

To all the writers out there: how do you figure out your setting and what are you tips for keeping things consistent and realistic throughout a larger work?

Feel free to add to this post or submit your own advice to share with your fellow writers at ancwritingresources.tumblr.com

On a scale of “Jace ‘just throw a locally-made jacket over your regular clothes’ Beleren” to “Gideon 'instantaneously appear in an outfit that matches the aesthetics of where you are the very second you get there’ Jura” how well do you blend into your surroundings when visiting an unfamiliar plane in search of a centuries-old planeswalker?

Cooking Time!

Wherever you go on earth you will find “local cuisine.” Local cuisine is often made up of local food, things that are grown or produced only in specific areas, and at the most minute level there is home cooking, recipes and specific alterations to common recipes that only exist in your family. This is the core idea of my next story. (My first story is about fetishes that i brought over from my other blog)

    One day the Human crew decided to make special dishes for the rest of the crew. This idea scared most of the ship. What was acceptable Death Planet meals? Many assumed it would be bloody and gruesome, which for some of this dishes was the start, or poisonous, which the humans made sure to check food restrictions for their crew mates. Some of the humans brought on livestock, killed and cooked it in front of the crew. They claimed that the “fresher the meat is, the better it tastes.” Others brought pre-cut meats with leafy things. Some brought on weird squares that jiggled but retained their shape when it didn’t seem like it should to be able to. Lots of liquids, powder things, fruits, and leafs were brought and shared by most. Lastly, One human named Ernest, brought on a few cans. He did not labor over the flames, smoking oils, hot ovens, or boiling waters. Ernest just watched others work while he sat there with his cans.

The first was a human to make her dish was named Sophia from a country known as I-tall-ee. She made Pee-za. All the other humans seemed very excited by this, most agreed Pee-za was their favorite food. Though the crew learned rather quickly that it was very hard to decide on the makings of a Pee-za or where on the Death Planet it came from. Some argued the Pee-za from Nu Yurk was better, other said Boss-tan and Sophia said the Amerikans didn’t know what real Pee-za was. The only thing most of the humans could agree on was that it was a crime to put pineapple on Pee-za. A few of the bravest crew tried the Pee-za and enjoyed the finished item. Others of the crew were afraid to try it due to the humans arguing and joking about fighting if they liked one pee-za more than another.

After Sophia was Otgonbayar or Bay as most called them. He was from Mongo-lia. They brought mutt-on, which was butchared while the Pee-zas were made. Bay cooked chunks of meat with many liquids and spicys on a flat cooking plate. The crew was worried about the plate being so hot but were reassured that a cooking plate and an eating plate were different and they would not be getting food off the searing cooking plate. The humans all complemented Bay on the smells of the food which did seem rather good. Most of the crew was happy to sample the mutt-on.

The next Human was Suki from Ja-Pan. She prepared several meals. First was a hot liquid called Me-so soop. Many were confused that the Toe-fool in the soop did not contain the Toes of a fool, but found the soop to be tasty despite the confusing name. What bewildered most of the crew is when she made Fry Rise. It was a combination of so many things; small narrow rise grains, egs, ste-ak, vegtables, and lots of seasonings. Many of the crew enjoyed it but could not understand why anyone would traditionally eat such small food with 2 sticks.

Now came one named Robert from Arc-en-saw. He made a meal that made others wince in pain at it. It was a Cheez Borg Er wrap in Bake On. The crew who enjoyed meat loved it dearly. The other Humans warned against eating too many due to Heart attacks. That did not worry the Foorgorian crew members as they had 3 hearts.

Next came Mary from Me-he-co. She made a meal called Talko’s. Some of the crew theorized these Talko’s is what made Mary talk so much. It was served in a few ways she explained depending where in Me-he-co you live. Some cook the Shell, some leave it soft. Some roll the meats and sauces in the soft shell while others piled it on the hard shell. She had one sauce called Picko-D-Guy-o. She warned some people it was full of spices that make some men on earth cry. This scared away most of the other crew but the Bilnafs ate the sauce and literally breathed fire. They were checked into medical bay shortly after and was later cleared as ok and healthy to eat. The gooakomolaye was much better for most of the crew to eat.

Next to last came a man from Aus-tray-lee-ah named by the other humans as Auzzy. He made a Sand-Mitch, with a jelly called Vegi-might. Many of the crew were hopeful at the nutritional value of the meal as it sounded like a vitamin and that is where humans gained their strength. That was until the other humans did not wish to eat it. A few of the crew would taste it and many did not like the taste. This did not offend Auzzy, “More for Me,” he said.

Last came Earnest from a place called North-way. He held one of the cans up and a few of the other humans began to cover there face or leave the room even though the can was still closed. He explained this was a can of Pick-old Hearings, a small aquatic creature that has been preserved for months during the frozen time of year. The Crew looked on with half horror, half curiosity, as he opened the can. Some of the other humans began to gag at the simple smell of this food. It was later explained by the other humans that the Hearings are caught and put in the can with minerals that allow the creature to undergo a type of fermentation that basically is on the edge of decay and rot. It is checked by the local government agency to make sure that it is safe for human consumption, assuming that you wanted to consume it. Most of the crew was confused by this dish the most out of all the foods. Why did the other humans run out of all the foods that were presented this was the crews favorite.

For once it was the humans who were confused and a little scared as the rest of the crew hungrily attacked the remaining cans of Pick-old Hearings

Damian as TT Animated Robin

Robin’s family was a bit of a mystery. The Teen Titans knew and respected that as best they could. It was just hard sometimes.

Or: five times the Teen Titans wondered about Dick Grayson without knowing they were wondering about Dick Grayson.

TT AU with Damian as 16 y/o TT!Robin, mostly grown up and much more comfortable than his eleven year old canon self.


Starfire and Raven were the two newest to the world—growing up in another dimension or another planet entirely was definitely a pretty good way to avoid TV news and pop culture.

While Raven put effort into getting to know her new world, it was a rather localized affair. She made a point of knowing what nightclubs and cafes had open poetry mics, an overview of the governmental systems currently in place, how to obtain a library card, and other such things that directly affected her day-to-day existence. Starfire seemed to enjoy the thrill of discovery and the inevitable subsequent sharing of culture that would occur whenever her teammates discovered something she had not previously encountered, and likewise enjoyed telling her teammates of similar practices on Tamaran, or the lack of them, as the case may have been.

Usually, their lack of connection with Earth culture (and very specifically, urban, Pacific Coast, United States culture) meant very little in the grand scheme of things. If they were caught off balance, most civilians gave them a pass because slightly strange faux pas were hardly the worst or strangest thing costumed heroes had done, and the Titans at least were sanctioned. Someone would explain things, get it all cleared up within a few minutes, and any destruction of property was written off and paid for in the cash pool specifically set aside for the inevitable accidents a group of superheroes would cause. So long as their mistakes didn’t cost anyone their lives there was compensation, and the lack of Earth knowledge was an eternal work-in-progress.

All things considered, it should have been expected that neither Raven nor Starfire knew about Nightwing.

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The Catch: Part One

                                                   SUMMARY:

You and Bucky were destined for each other, and everyone seemed to know it but you. The day you met Bucky Barnes, you grew closer with your platonic relationship - that is until one night in the heart of New York, things change. While weeks pass of denying anything could ever happen between the two of you, you realize that unconventional love is the best of all.

Notes: Bucky x Reader, tension. Playfulness. Let me know if you’d like a part two!

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