mixed met

jason & kyle adopt a dog and its a german shepherd/golden retriever mix (because cmon Look at them) but they cant agree on what to name it. kyle keeps suggesting pretentious art names and jason suggests pretentious lit names and it’s not until like 2 days later that they realize this dog responds literally only to “dog”

10

da like se gostou icons da praia: lmixsempsd

Green eyed roman

Pairing: roman Godfrey x reader

Request: A hemlock imagine where Roman gets really pissed at you bc youre talking to Peter just as friend and he doesn’t want to lose you

A/n I’m sorry for the shitty ending


You knew dating roman Godfrey wasn’t going to be easy. You were shy and quiet while roman had no problem speaking his mind. When news broke about your relationship it was met with mixed reaction, mostly because they thought you guys were too different. You also received death glares from all the women in town because you took roman from them. Roman told you to ignore them because he was 100% committed to you but you couldn’t help but feel self-conscious and jealous from time to time.

One thing you weren’t counting on was dealing with roman when he was jealous. He felt like every guy you spoke one word to was trying to steal you from him. Granted some times he was right but the one person roman was mainly jealous of was peter. He felt like he was trying to take you away from him like he took letha. You had to remind him on several occasions that you loved him and that you would never leave him but he never listened.

The final straw was when you came home late one night because you were working on a class project with peter. “For the last time, I was with peter all day because we were working on a project. You would know about the project if you bothered to show up for school.”

Not believing you, roman picked up your lamp and threw it against your wall. He cornered you and took your face in his hands “stop fucking lying and just admit it ! You’re in love with peter.”

“Jesus fucking Christ for the last time, I’m not in love with peter ! ! ! ” You screamed at roman and removed his hands from your face. You had tears streaming down your face “I love you so much roman, more than you know but if you can’t trust me-“

Roman felt his body go numb and went from angry to sad when he realized what you were about to say. “No no no no no don’t fucking finish that sentence.” roman wrapped his arms around you and held onto you as tight as possible.

“I’m sorry roman but if you can’t trust me than I don’t think we can be together.” You tried to get out of his grasp but couldn’t, if anyone the harder you tried to get out of his grasp the tighter he held you. “I expected you to trust me just like I trust that you won’t cheat on me with one of your many groupies. Goodbye R-”

“No ! Y/n look at me” roman grabbed your face again and looked into your eyes “you are not going to break up with me. You love me and I love you and we’re going to be together forever.” Roman knew it was wrong for him to charm you into staying with him but you were the only person he truly loved and he didn’t want to lose you.

“We’re going to be together forever” you repeated the last part before you smiled at him and kissed his jaw. “Go lay down, I bought something sexy that I know you’re going to love”

“I’ll be waiting” roman bent down to kissed you before you grabbed the lingerie from your drawer and disappeared into the bathroom to change. Roman smiled to himself because he still had you in his life.

Predatory Instincts

Group: BTS

Pairing: JIMIN X READER

Requested: Anonymous said: Can u plzz do like a hybrid au, with either jimin. The plot is also up to u. And i luv ur works btw thank uuu. ❤❤ (same request as jungkook shifter)

Excerpt: ‘“I’m sure you can go faster than that tiger,” you looked over at him in interest, as he tapped your speed button a few times until you were running just a bit slower than him. You face lit up in a smile, for a small shifter he was confident and you wanted to run your hands through that silky soft hair and down his-‘

Genre: fluff

Length: 1.1k

A/N: if you want more shifter au, of this chapter or a different member leave a message! I have a good idea what shifter type they are already so don’t worry about specifying!

Originally posted by baking-suga-kookies

When you walked into the gym, you had watched with amusement as prey shifters flinched, a few rabbit ears popping out and others freezing, their muscles stiffening as their wide eyes looked at you. It wasn’t an unusual reaction; being a mixture of lion and tiger you had long since become used to the scrunching of noses as they picked up your scent.

Even so, you looked over in interest at the boy on the running machine, he seemed to be the only shifters to not humour you with a reaction and even if he was a predator you knew he would have at least looked over in interest.

Keep reading

tenaciouslytrans  asked:

I always try to have a diverse cast of characters in anything I write, regardless of the genre. But I've received feedback from some people that my mixed-race characters aren't "realistic." One example of this is a character I have; he's Indian and Argentinian. I have a decent story for now his parents met and everything. Is having characters like this unrealistic or like I'm forcing diversity? What's a good way to go about this? Thank you!! And sorry if my words are all scrambled.

“Unrealistic” Racial Mixes? Indian and Argentinian

I’ve met people who are Iranian and Latino, Italian and Indian, and (white) German and Chinese. My Japanese friend and colleague was born in Venezuela. I used to do business with a woman who called herself “Jewban” (yes, she was from South Florida.) 

Is the person who told you that white? Because I almost wonder if part of the “forced diversity, unrealistic” kneejerk reaction is white people forgetting that interracial couples don’t have to contain a white person.

That’s not to say that certain groups wouldn’t raise an eyebrow–but for that to happen, they’d have to be highly geographically localized, and you could probably still make that work if you set it up realistically.

–Shira

Define “unrealistic.”

I typed in “Indian Argentinian” and immediately got a Wiki article on an Indian community in Argentina. so, y'know, far from unrealistic.

FWIW: there’s Puppity, a comic going around about being multiracial by Kiana Khansmith, a Jamaican-Japanese woman. Also, the last two Miss Japans were Black and Japanese (Ariana Miyamoto), and Indian and Japanese (Priyanka Yoshikawa). My mentor in law school was also Black and Japanese, too, and one of the deans was Black and Korean. A blogger I follow is Japanese-Vietnamese, even, I had a classmate in school who was Chinese and raised in Peru, and also taught a student who was Japanese and raised in Mexico. 

tl;dr: agree heartily with Shira.

EDIT: corrected Priyanka’s surname to Yoshikawa and Eliana to Ariana. Thanks so much, helpful followers! 

~Mod Jess

10

“The first thing that hit me about the Cavern was, “There’s no light – how can I take pictures in this place?” I held the camera at 1/15th of a second - I don’t think there are many pictures taken without flash in the Cavern. […]

“People seem to make it all very complicated but it’s all really very simple – I just happened to be there.”

[Michael Ward, A Day In The Life: Photographs of The Beatles by Michael Ward]

Some of Michael Ward’s amazing photos of the Beatles rehearsing and performing in the Cavern Club, Liverpool, on the 19th February, 1963. He’d been hired by Honey magazine to travel to Liverpool and photograph The Beatles, a band he’d never heard of. These could well be the last photos of the Beatles at the Cavern Club, they would only play there twice more - once in April 1963 and once in August 1963. 

This was the first Beatles Cavern Club appearance for two weeks, also the day it was announced to the Cavern Club audience that Please Please Me had gone to number one in the charts. It was met with mixed reactions. 

The news that [Please Please Me] had topped the singles charts in the New Musical Express and Disc magazines was announced from the stage by the Cavern’s DJ Bob Wooler.

Wooler read out a telegram to The Beatles by their manager Brian Epstein, sent c/o the Cavern Club. As he announced the news of Please Please Me’s success, the audience went quiet. They sensed that The Beatles were no longer their secret. The Beatles, meanwhile, already knew that they were number one.

Also on the bill at the Cavern were Lee Curtis and the All Stars, The Pathfinders, and Freddie Starr and the Midnighters. And in the crowd for The Beatles’ set was Pete Best, drummer at the time for the All Stars, although both he and The Beatles were at pains to avoid an encounter with one another. It was the last time The Beatles set eyes on Best.

[BeatlesBible.com]

Pics: Michael Ward.

2

THEY’RE PLAYING OUR SONG (a steve x peggy mix) || [listen]

“Well, asking a woman to dance always seemed so terrifying. And the past few years just didn’t seem to matter that much. Figured I’d wait.”

“For what?”

“The right partner.”

2

I paid money for this, too

Shallura Fic Rec (#2)


Shallura Rec List (#2)

I previously made a list of my favorite Shallura fics, and decided to pull together a new one for you guys!! Hopefully you find something you haven’t read yet. There’s a bit of a lag in Shallura fics lately (and content in general), but there’s absolutely still some good ones! Again, these are categorized to the best of my ability, since some of them can apply to more than one group!

Shallura Rec List (#1) is here


Fluff

Like an Eagle - Revasnaslan

“It turned out that explaining trust falls to an alien was a little bit more difficult than Shiro thought it was going to be.

Written for Shallura Week Day 3 (Trust / Growth)”

Sharing Earth culture, trusting, Allura scares TF out of Shiro


Wingman - thir13enth

“Coran is never subtle. Shallura.”

Supportive Coran, protective space uncle, wingman Coran

She’s Like the Sun - sdd_writes_things

“In which neither Shiro nor Allura can actually sleep at night and they’re super thirsty for each other, turning tentative hand holding into nearly making love on the floor which then somehow turns into seventy miles of blankets and then sleeping in front of a window.”

Almost smutty content, shy handholding to violent necking, insomnia, pining, not explicit


Nighttime - butimnotinthefandom

“Shiro sees to his crew and spends some time alone with Allura.”

Shiro’s POV, space family, minor Klance/Klangst, flirting, domestic, stargazing, pining, sharing stress,  “Innocent Shallura massage”


Where Sleep Will Be Peaceful ; Unharried by Terror - gallantrejoinder

“Four times Allura and Shiro slept side by side and it didn’t mean anything - plus the one time that it did.”

Insomnia, four times plus one, sharing a bed, nightmares, sleep, gentle and soft things, misunderstandings, pining, happy ending, slight mature content

At 2200 Hours - braincoins

 “It’s the end of a long day aboard the Castle ship. Time to relax and unwind.”

Shallura Sundays, prompt, domestic, fluff, background Klance, space parents, playful flirting and teasing, tired Shiro

Sock Sliding at 2am - mantharay

“Allura and Shiro are distraught and stressed after the events of Crystal Venom (S1x09). Through the power of sliding down dark castle halls like children, they learn that to be a leader, you can’t be serious all the time.

Oh, and there’s some Emotions™.”

Fluff and angst, comfort, PTSD, panic/anxiety attacks, comfort, platonic relationship, sort of, possible pining

Moments of You - Seliphra

“When Allura gets injured saving the day, Shiro can’t help but try to take care of her.”

First kiss, love confessions, canon-typical injury and violence, minor injuries, BAMF Allura, nervous Shiro, hurt/comfort, Shiro is in awe and Allura is amazing,

Come Down to the Water Where the Sky is Blue and Yellow - armouredescort (Part 1 of A Long Road to Courtship)

“Allura convinces Shiro to go to the beach.”

Day at the beach, beach episode, tooth-rotting fluff, space family, water fight, slow burn

Working to Relax - IHaveNothingToDo

“Allura’s tense and her hair is a mess. Shiro helps.“

Soft, Shiro plays with Allura’s hair, it’s the mice’s fault, short fic

3 AM - jaztice

“Shiro and Allura are hanging out in Allura’s room around 3am.”

Shiro is ticklish, kissing, tickling, hickeys, short fic

Ancient - juniperallura

 “For prompt “Shallura, ancient. The universe can be very heavy and make you feel very small.”

Fluff, angst, comfort, playful banter, short fic


A Matter of Time - teslatricity (nayanroo)

“The war’s over, and the universe is starting to rebuild. As Allura leads the charge in forming new alliances, looking to the future, Shiro considers the kind of future he wants for them. But being a paladin means that your plans tend to go awry and your timing is never the greatest…“

Engagement, Shiro is a bit of a disaster, but he loves her so much ya’ll, background relationships, but only if you’re looking for it, proposal-blocked, supportive Keith, gorgeous scenery, nervous Shiro, Shiro’s parents, new home


Keep reading

anonymous asked:

I'm like highkey wondering what you look like??

Right now I look like a teen mom with too many kids (I love them though you are all precious)

If I get 500 likes on this I’ll post one, granted if the gods are in my favor and the stars are aligned correctly I’ll look halfway decent but meh

If you need some visual beforehand though just imagine a white passing (I don’t know how the fuck people think I’m white with the hair I have but o-fucking-kay) black girl with two afro poofs on the side completely done with life

If Jimmy could get Harry to do a Jeffrey’s sketch I might actually die. Even without Horatio Sanz or Will Ferrell, I’d still love it. Frankly even without Harry. Really all I need is Jimmy with an edgy haircut folding shirts with a smug sense of superiority. Just give me Jeffrey’s!!

Kidding Around - Dick Grayson x Reader


Requested by Anon -  Imagine where reader turns into a kid and the team tries to take care of her but causes keeps causing trouble and really likes to be around kaldur and listes to him and dick gets jealous since he like her and vice versa


“(Y/N)!” Dick ran towards the building, ignoring the rest of the team’s cries of warning. Suddenly, he was knocked off his feet when a magical blast shook the building. Zatanna ran forward, uttering the spell to form a magic shield to protect the team. She pushed it just far enough to protect Dick as well as the blast pushed passed him. 

Once the blast had calmed, Dick was on his feet. He broke through Zatanna’s shield and sprinted into the building. “(Y/N)!” A child’s crying was the only thing he could hear. 

“Robin, stop,” Wally shouted, appearing next to Dick. “The building could be unstable.” He grabbed Dick’s arm, trying to pull him back out. 

“(Y/N) is in here, plus a kid,” Dick snapped, following the source of the child’s crying. However, when Dick saw the child, he froze.

Wally followed him, still trying to get him out of the building. At Dick’s sudden stop, Wally ran into his back. “Geez, Rob. What’s wro…” Wally began only to drift off at the sight of the child. The child continued to cry. “Is that who I think it is?”

The rest of the team appeared, running to catch up with Robin. They skidded to a stop at the sight of the child. “(Y/N)?” Artemis gasped as the rest of the team couldn’t find words.

The child perked up at the sound of the name before starting to sob again. “Are we sure that’s (Y/N)?” Conner asked, gesturing to the child who was wearing your costume. It was too big for them, hanging off their little body. 

“I’ve heard of spells that could turn people back into kids, but I didn’t think they were real,” Zatanna added, frowning slightly. Meanwhile, the child’s crying increased.

M’gann’s eyes glowed, searching the child’s mind. “It feels like (Y/N), but younger.” 

“What do we do?” Dick demanded, his voice edged in panic. Meanwhile, Kaldur slowly approached you. The team watched him with wide eyes as he knelt before you.

“Hush, little one. You are safe now,” Kaldur soothed, holding out his hand. You choked on your tears in surprise before staring down in fascination at his webbed fingers. “We are friends.” With round eyes, you gazed at Kaldur before clumsy crawling over to him and into his arms. The over sized costume made it difficult. 

Kaldur bounced you gently on his hip, drawing a giggle from you. When he turned to face the team, he was met with mixed expressions of awe and disbelief. Shaking his head, Kaldur made his way out of the building. “Come along. We will solve this matter back at the cave.” 

M’gann, Artemis, and Zatanna exchanged knowing glances before running after Kaldur to get a better look at you. Conner followed with less enthusiasm. 

Wally started to follow as well, but stopped when he realized Dick wasn’t beside him. Raising an eyebrow, Wally turned to find him kneeling down by the spot you were sitting. “Rob, what are you doing?”

“Nothing,” Dick replied shortly. He got to his feet, walking passed Wally to follow the others. “Are you coming?”

“Yeah,” Wally snorted, narrowing his eyes in suspicion before trotting to catch up with Dick. 

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The Keg-Stand Incident

(( to the anon that said they wanted this fic, here u go ))


The egos were all talking when Wilford finally arrived at the meeting, chatting lively amongst themselves. Dark was missing, and Bim informed Wil that he had gone to look for the moustached ego since he hadn’t shown up when the meeting was called.

“What are we talking about then?” He asked, taking a seat at the end of the table and putting his feet up on it.

“We’re reminiscing about old times.” Bim replied, “Google was telling me about his time with Matthias, and everyone else was just sharing stories from early days.”

Wilford grinned at that. He had recently found an old photograph, one that he had never thought had survived his tumultuous arrival in this world, but it was perfect for this situation.

And for teasing Dark.

“Let me tell you all a story!” He said loudly enough to carry over all their voices. The words were met with mixed reactions but the ego’s all fell quiet and waited.

Reaching into the breast pocket of his shirt, Wilford withdrew a small picture and held it up so he could see the image but the ego’s couldn’t.

“What you are about to see may disturb you.” He cackled, ignoring the odd stirring in his gut at seeing his friend in such an old photo.

“Hurry up then!” Doc huffed, annoyed since Wilford had interrupted his story.

Placing the photo down on the table, Wilford pushed it towards the centre just as the doors opened and Dark came in.

“So you finally decided to show-.” The grey-skinned ego trailed off as he noticed the photo and his shell cracked harshly, startling the egos closest.
“Where did you find that?” He breathed.

Wilford shrugged, “That’s personal. And what you see before you is a picture of our dear Darkiplier doing a keg-stand.”

There was uproar at the table, laughter and expressions of disbelief as everyone grabbed for the photo. Dark’s aura reached it first, before Wilford himself and the picture soon turned to little more than dust.

Immediately, Wilford was on his feet.

“Why did you do that?” He demanded.

“Don’t act as if you’re surprised.” Dark sneered, “You know my stance on anything from that time.”

“Dark…that was a connection to-.”

“A time that is gone!” Dark interrupted with a barking tone. “Honestly Wil, pull yourself together. We need to look forward, not back.”

He walked past Wilford and patted him over the breast pocket. As Dark pulled away, Wilford felt a pull of a photo in his pocket, different from the now destroyed one. When the room descended into chaos as the other egos tried to find out why Dark had done a keg-stand, Wilford pulled out the photo.

It was the Colonel and Damien before all this had happened, in their old clothes and styles with smiles on their faces and arms around each other. Dark had written “for the bad days” on the back in curved script and Will smiled.

Look forward indeed.

Blood in the Cut

Winchesters x Sister!Reader

Read Devil’s Backbone (Pt 1) Here

A/n: Part two to Devil’s Backbone. The next part will be out this weekend. Let me know if you want to be tagged in the series.

Warnings: Language, kind of descriptive painful moments, Angst

Forever tag list: @Freaksforthewin , @thewinhunter, @cambriacaneatnoodles, @brokennoone , @youtubehelpsmesurvive , @chrisevansthedoritobastard , @winchesters-favorite-girl , @we-know-a-little-about-a-lot @godh8salyssa @dean-baby-Winchester @straightasdeanwinchester @animexchocolate

This Series Taglist: @capxls @docharleythegeekqueen @ness-is-a-mess @leenasleena-blog @cupcake-baker21 @tumblingabriell  @chillnadia @itseverythingilike  @superblyunnatural @emwinchester1 @whoianwriter @thevioletthourr @raes-dream1and @aqswdefrgthzjukilop @jude-winchester-at-your-service

Unfamiliar surroundings passed through your line of view as the pure black tires ran smoothly over the perfect pavement. Your head rested on the foggy window wild Dean’s jacket was wrapped around the front of you to help keep you warm. It seemed as though hours had passed since anybody had said anything about the discovery of the mysterious bright red hand mark imprinted beneath your freezing skin covered in goosebumps and specks of hardened dirt.

The storm that stirred violently above you all was slowing down. Raindrops began falling at uneven and slow patterns. As a kid, you’d practically grown up in the back seat. Going almost everywhere as you were “Daddy’s little angel” and he didn’t trust you in the hands of anybody else. Not even your own brothers. He must’ve gotten the nickname confused because you were more of a little monster rather than an angel of any sort.

Your right index finger trailed lightly along the path a raindrop had created on the outer window of the Impala. A bad habit of this was created whenever something was happening that you couldn’t handle. Being back from the dead…that was one thing. But this unwanted and possibly permanent tattoo of violation was another.

What the hell even was it? Did it belong to somebody who’d helped you out of Hell? Maybe this was a good thing. But how could it be.

“Hey.” The sound of Dean’s deep voice interrupted your train of anxiety filled thoughts. “You’re doing that thing.” He must’ve been talking about how your breathing sped up and your mind drifted into “la la land” as he called it.

A pained sigh escaped your chapped lips. Taking your hand away from the window, you closed it into a fist and hesitantly set it down on your still damp lap.

“I’m just-” your eyes glanced down to your covered hip. “What if this…” how were you supposed to word what you wanted to express?

A hand reached over from the back seat, being gently placed on your shoulder as fingers massaged easily.

“Relax. Take a deep breath. Don’t overthink what you want to say.” Sam always knew how to calm you down in moments like these. Not that you’d ever experienced anything like this.

“What in the actual hell are we going to do?” Turning your head, you looked over at Dean. “This isn’t our average everyday kind of problem. This is- we don’t even know what this is.” Your eyes squinted slightly as your eyebrows furrowed together.

“Problem? I don’t see this as a problem, Phebe. I mean…look at you.” The entire time Dean was speaking, his hands remained at ten and two on the wheel and his eyes focused on the wet and slippery road.

The scoff that came from you was one that couldn’t be controlled.

“Yeah Dean, let’s look at me. Oh, but don’t forget the giant ass handprint on my damn hip. That’s a new accessory to the fucked up shit that’s been going on in the Winchester collection.” A sharp breath of air was pushed past your lips, soothing your burning lungs. “How is this not a problem?” You finished after collections and calming yourself down.

“You’re alive. That’s what matters.” This time his eyes met yours. Only for a split second before returning to the road.

Alive? Dean- I rose out of my grave today. Six feet under the damn ground and you want to say I’m alive?” Your right eyebrow was slightly higher than your left. “Whatever I am…I’m a whole new level of freak.” Turning your head you went back to starring out into the dark abyss passing you by.

“Don’t.” It was minutes before a voice filled the confined air around you. “Don’t say that. You can’t-” Dean meant well, he did.

“Can we please just drop it for now?” Looking over at him you revealed the barley held in tears. “My minds going to explode at this rate.” Nobody said another word.

Folding up the jacket you scooted downward on the seat so your legs were curled up just beneath you. The jacket was placed between the small empty space of the seatbelt and door handle for your head to rest on. Whatever was going to happen, whatever new fresh Hell faced you, it was going to have to wait. Sleep was the only thing you cared to think about. Before you knew it the world around you faded into darkness while your mind drifted off into another dimension.

***

Heat was all around you. There was no escaping it. Every path you turned down. Every way you looked. It led you back to the center. Back to the beginning of the horrid room.

Everything around you was blurred. All that could be seen was red heat rising like a snake against the walls. A dreadful banging sound came from a door. A door for some reason you were terrified to go look behind. Every second that passed, the banging grew louder. Until it sounded like a drum beating inside of your ear.

The door grew closer with each crashing bang. It was just an arms length away as you reached out to touch the handle…

***

“Hey, Phoebe.” The sound of a voice snapped you straight up from your seat and resting position.

A warm jacket was thrown from your body as it moved with a sudden jolt. Your feet rested on the floorboard now.

Looking outside the window you noticed the scenery had changed drastically. The warm and loving sun was once again filling the Earth with its friendly embrace. The heat brought a warm smile to your face. Regardless of the fact you were sweating.

“You okay?” It was Sam who’s voice caught your attention and grabbed you out of your dreaming mind.

Brushing the messy brown waves of hair out of your face you stretched over the backseat. Surprisingly enough, he wasn’t there. Instead he was outside of the car looking in at you.

“Just a bad dream, not the end of the world.” Your eyes began to wander around, searching for a hair tie. A clip. Something to tame the wild beast falling freely behind you.

“Do you want to talk about it?” His arms rested neatly in a folded manner on the rolled down window. Concerned Hazel eyes met your mixed ones.

With a chuckle you swung open the door and threw your head back while your hands went to work tying your hair into a messy ponytail.

“It’s just a dream, Sammy. I don’t need to be babied.” Feet swung out of their protected area inside of Baby to meet rough hot ground. “Bobby really needs to put some grass here.” Helplessly, you sat there with your feet hanging.

“Well, most of the time when we come here we’re all wearing shoes.” Sam walked around to you, giving a point to your feet which you’d completely forgotten were bare.

No verbal exchange was needed. Arms opened wide as Sam happily bent over and allowed you to wrap your arms around his neck to be carried. One thing Hell didn’t have that you couldn’t stand living without was your cheesy yet kind brother. And the other brother who liked to be an extra pain in the ass but made up with booze.

The moment your feet met the porches newly added wooden surface you rushed in the front door, looking for the old man you missed.

“Sleeping beauty finally rose from her slumber.” The voice came from behind you. Bobby.

Instantly you walked over to him, wrapping your arms around to his back. His own arms went around your shoulders and neck, holding you tighter. The hug consumed you. Another thing Hell didn’t have was the loving touch of the father figure you so desperately needed.

“Rising from my grave, or from the front seat?” You couldn’t help but add.

The laugh that came from him made you jump a little. You’d forgotten how it sounded. So much had seemed to fade away from you.

“Both.” Stepping back to get a better look at you, the old timer placed a rough yet gentle hand on your left cheek. Your fell into his touch. “I missed you, Squirt.”

“What happened to Idjit?” A little friendly smile played on your still dry lips.

“You’re Squirt first and foremost.” The reminder of your nickname caught you off guard. How much had you lost to your time in prison?

“Not to mention a dirty mudded up Squirt. Mind if I hop in the shower?” Your thumb pointed behind you to up the stairs where your sweet clean Heaven awaited.

You didn’t even need an answer. Bobby had made it clear that his house was yours. Except his beer. You’d been cut off for free help on that.

For awhile you stood in the bathroom. Allowing the water to warm to a soothing temperature. Not too hot. Not too cold. Steam rose to the ceiling, traveling until it reached the mirror where grab on and stuck.

Clothes dropped to the floor. But you didn’t recognize the person staring back at you in the mirror. This girl- this thing, it was different. Her eyes were cold and dead. Face was straight and stone. Skin was pale and fragile looking. Like one touch and she’d shatter into a million unfixable pieces. The sad thing was the reflection was you. But how could it be? You were so unrecognizable.

You inspected each aspect of your “new body”. Always stopping your eyes on the red unwanted marking on your hip. Turning to your right, you got a better look at it. The hand, it was too large to be a woman’s. The print was much bigger. Slowly you placed your left hand over it, thinking it would match up. But it didn’t. Trying your right you realized how you were grabbed.

Four long fingers wrapped around your front. Palm resting directly on the side of your hip. While the thumb still curled tightly around to the back just slightly. And you hated it. You hated the mark. The way it looked. Like it was a scar. A new constant reminder of the horrific things you’d been through. Things that were vague and barley able to be remembered but still lingered in the deepest parts of your mind.

You climbed in the shower, grabbing onto the soap and a fresh scrunchy to clean yourself properly. The soap sloshed around and splattered against the wall as you rubbed it harshly onto the area that was still puffed out red. Taking the scrunchy into your right hand you began to scrub. As hard as you could. But it wasn’t working.  

The pace your hand moved went faster and faster. The pressure you were applying grew harder. Until you dropped it. Looking down to see how irritated your skin was. Small specks of blood rested just on the surface.

Your lungs were filled with so much air, they too were excited. Sitting down in the far corner of the shower you curled into a sitting ball. Allowing tears to fall invisibly, blending into the warm steaming water. For a split moment you closed your eyes. Trying to calm yourself better. But all you saw was the heated area from your dream with screaming people behind bars in the background. Faces disfigured and melting off of their skulls. The sound of horrific screams filled your ears, even as you placed your hands over them to cover the sound from coming in.

This wasn’t something you could just block out. This wasn’t something that could be washed away even with a hundred showers. It- all of it…was burned deep into your mind. Your body. Your soul. And nothing could change that.

Two Armies at Passchendaele - The British

The British army at Third Ypres was a far more sophisticated tool than it had been just a year before at the Somme. Its use of tanks, air support, and fire-and-move infantry tactics made it a truly modern army, but horrific weather and a deep German defense would frustrate its efforts when Battle of Passchendaele began on July 31, 1917.

In the English-speaking world, when one imagines World War I, they probably think of Passchendaele. On July 31, 1917, the British Fifth and Second armies, with the support of the French First army on the left flank, opened an offensive to clear the Ypres salient. They met with mixed success on D-Day. For the next three months a massive battle raged that turned this small piece of Flanders into hell-on-earth. A colossal downpour soaked the battlefield. Wounded soldiers drowned in shell-holes as they filled with water, and animals were buried alive in mud. Hundreds of troops died for bare meters of ground.

Yet the army that set off on July 31 was confident that it could win. The BEF of 1917 was a much different beast than the one that had fought at the Somme in 1916 or Loos in 1915. There were no more “human-wave” attacks, no more walking over No-Man’s Land like on July 1 1916. Historians talk of a learning-curve for World War I generals. By mid-summer 1917, the British (and even more-so the French) were figuring out how to win trench warfare.

Anzac troops train with Lewis guns. British infantry platoons now made plentiful use of light machine guns, mortars, and rifle grenades.

The armies fought great battles at Ypres in 1914 and 1915 too. But one obvious difference in 1917 was that airplanes now flooded the sky. The Royal Flying Corps allotted 180 planes to the Fifth Army. They observed for the artillery, patrolled for the enemy, and went “balloon busting,” the dangerous practice of shooting down enemy observation balloons. France’s Aéronautique Militaire patrolled the sky too, and together the Allies kept their air superiority with many excellent new planes like the Sopwith Camel, the two-seat Bristol Fighter, and the French Spad XII’s.

The Bristol F2b fighter. It was nimble and agile but also heavily armed.

But it was on the ground where things would be decided. For two weeks British guns had been firing on the Germans, expending four million shells, one million more than at the Somme. But the BEF’s commander, Douglas Haig, did not plan on any immediate breakthrough, as he had at the Somme the year before. Instead, he planned on chipping away at the German strength. His strategy called for a number of limited advances. The first day objectives were set 6,000 yards away from the start line, well within range of fire support. From there, the artillery would move up slowly with the footsoldiers, “until, bite by bite, the German defences had been chewed through, the enemy’s reserves destroyed and a way opened to the undefended rear area.” New artillery tactics, such as the “creeping barrage” or the use of gas shells, would help neutralize the enemy. 

Tanks were a common sight on the battlefield in 1917 as the Entente built more and more.

Tanks, 136 of them, would also accompany the men when they set off at 3:50 AM on July 31. But the infantry was still the most important element. Much more flexibility had been extended to platoon commanders to lead as they saw fit. Light machine-guns, rifle-grenades, and other new weapons were now equipped to every platoon. The concept of fire-and-maneuver was now well ingrained. But would it all be enough to break the German lines?

Perhaps the greatest obstacle to the battle, however, was David Lloyd George. The Prime Minister was hesistant to committing troops to another great battle after the bloodbath of the Somme. He preferred to engage Germany’s allies, fighting in Italy, in the Middle East, or on the Eastern Front. If there had to be fighting in the West, better small attacks (”Pétain tactics”) than a large battle. Some of his objections would be proved correct, but Haig and the government’s military advisor, General Sir William Robertson, overruled him. Robertson also had his doubts, but preferred Haig’s decisiveness to Lloyd George’s evasion. During the Third Ypres campaign, however, Haig and Lloyd George would fall out even more, and their arguments about strategy and reinforcements would hamper the British military effort.