never ever ever draw them as less than they are literally

Gil’s Story Is My Nightmare

You know, it normally takes weeks if not months for my feelings to settle on a subject relating to fiction. Like, my first time through, it’ll wash over me, I’ll consider it a while, and then, eventually, I’ll come to a conclusion.

But Gil’s story rubbed me wrong on first run, and I easily figured out why.

Gil’s story is my nightmare as a gay man.

I know I’m not the first to sum it up, but I am SO frustrated and pissed off by this (and Mass Effect Andromeda’s handling of M/M relationships in general), I need to work it out of my system.

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anonymous asked:

I know that you're old enough to be writing about sex, hence you don't have to give a shit about it but I think it's unfair that many fanfic writers feel obligated to write smut to receive attention and recognition only because so many people are biased. Angst and fluff writers don't really get the chance to show their talents and you can compare most of a writers fic notes and 9/10 their smuts will have 30% more notes than their other stories what kind of sucks. What do you think?

I think preach the fuck out of this. I completely, one hundred and ten percent agree with you and I am certain that many of my other fellow fanfic writers agree too – in fact, I know they do as this is a discussion that has come up plenty of times when conversing with them, and they share the precise same opinion as both you and I do. No matter the age of the writer, it is definitely something to give a shit about because it develops an “unhealthy” writing pattern where the writer, despite their level of experience with writing fanfics (though it can certainly be a defining factor for first-time fic writers and whether they “make it or break it” in the fandom’s fic scene), can begin to doubt whether to write or post a story, solely due to the fact that it does not include smut.

Personally, when planning most of my ideas, they generally begin without any smut unless the main focus of the story is sex itself, like An Oath For Sinners is. But I always notice once I am at a certain point of developing upon the idea, I will end up narrowing the direction of the plot down to two questions: “Will it include smut? Is smut a detrimental piece of the plot, and, if not, will that ultimately minimize the audience that will end up reading the story if I cease to include at least one sex scene?” It is a sad truth, most especially since hundreds of successful young adult novels never pass the barrier of kissing, or even have a romantic element in the first place, yet we as fic writers feel the dire necessity to involve at least a blowjob in order to appeal to a wider audience in the fanbase.

This is also not to say that writing smut is a bad thing because hey, like I said, I literally have a series dedicated to a girl who is an escort and it was something that I genuinely wished to write. But there are many, many ideas that I have put on the backburner because they cease to fit smut into the plot, and I have read a ginormous number of fics that have been without smut, yet are absolutely incredible nonetheless. Though you are right – those fics definitely lacked the 30% extra recognition because of it.

Continuing on, most of us write for ourselves. I certainly do, as the vast majority of my fics are based on ideas that I have developed myself; hence why I rarely take requests from the public. But that does not mean we wish to have zero feedback on a piece we have slaved over for days, as hearing the voices of our readers provides us an insight on the elements they enjoyed that we will then proceed to weave throughout our future pieces. We still desire to appeal to an audience, and at least eighty percent of the time in regards to fanfiction, you have to include a smut scene to do just that.

So I will completely admit that it is a punch to the gut to see that my smut-based oneshot Do You Feel It Sugar? has over a thousand responses in comparison to A Ticket To The Sun that, even still, has a very vague smut scene that I put in there to draw an audience to a genre (dystopia) that can be touch and go when it comes to piquing a reader’s intrigue. It might sound ridiculous, but it begins to plant seeds of doubt in my mind where I think: “Is my writing only considered good if I slather it with sex, and then more sex?” This most especially occurs if I receive a message that asks whether the future chapters of a series I am writing will include smut, which I have been questioned about for The Orange Girl, The Devil Skates On Thin Ice, An Eternity of Red, etcetera.

I am not saying that all fic writers may think such a thing, but that kind of thought process especially occurs to me as somebody who is pursuing writing as a career. It happens all the more so when I reflect on my first persona, sugasmut, which was hitting follower milestones on a fortnightly basis because these people adored reading my collection of fics that I will freely admit were baseless, pwp smuts that hardly ever breached 3,000 words. Now, I am putting out stories that generally exceed a count of 10,000 words, have fully planned out plots with much less smut and more extensive character development – but I rarely receive twenty new followers a week. I am not stating that to sound selfish or upset, because I really could not mind how large or small my follower count is, but rather to show a comparison of what most people are desiring to read. And that, very clearly, is plotless smut.

Let me tell you that there is a grand audience of those who could not care less for reading smut and enjoy a fic just as much without it, and I do certainly have plenty of those types of readers amongst my followers that I am ever grateful for. Yet no matter that, the obligation to write a smut scene lays heavy upon my own, and many other writers’ shoulders if they are hoping to branch out and reach a wider audience, which yeah, can really suck!

anonymous asked:

Can I get what my boys would be like in a relationship??

your wish is my command, nonny ☺️

guys also pls to remember persona takes place in japan so normal pda usually just goes as far as holding hands!! they’re not gonna make out in public unless they’re INCREDIBLY bold

akira

  • this stoic boyo can sometimes, to outsiders, come across as being a bit cold or unfeeling
  • which is a complete and utter misconception
  • not ashamed of his s/o but he probably wouldn’t mention them excessively in conversation?
  • just a really private dude, he likes that he gets to have this person all to himself and give them the parts of himself that he doesn’t share much with other people
  • that kind of emotional intimacy rly rly gets to him bc he craaaves that kind of bond with another person
  • probably not super big on the pda, not because of a lack of confidence but because he’d want to leave that up to his partner (& again, private boyo)
  • he’d be down to hold hands if they were but he doesn’t want to make anyone uncomfortable
  • it’s probably his first relationship tbh he didn’t really get close to people before the game but he’d still be cool as a cucumber bc that’s how he is just in general
  • behind closed doors tho boy is always in contact with his s/o, has a hand on their arm or an arm around their shoulders or leaning together or touching knees. it’s kind of new for him to have people who want to be around him so he’s taking advantage of the opportunity.
  • he’s a v confident partner, usually initiating most physical intimacy
  • he L O V E S to fluster his s/o, get them red and stuttering with his teasing
  • a quiet but comforting presence when he’s not teasing them mercilessly

ryuji

  • this LOUD BOY is very LOUD about his s/o
  • constantly bragging about them and showing them off
  • he does the will smith thing to introduce them to new people
  • (ok maybe he doesn’t actually do that but he threatens to and it gets a kick out of his s/o being like “wtf no what’s wrong with you!!”)
  • actually super shy about pda, will blush up a sTORM if he gets hugs or hand holds. he’ll reciprocate hesitantly and but be beet red the whole time
  • THE WHOLE TIME u guys
  • is terrible at flirting. like the literal worst; puns and bad pickup lines. and he knows it but for the s/o he can’t resist.
  • also p confident in the relationship tho?? like he doesn’t second-guess himself on his s/o’s feelings even if he does second-guess whether he deserves them
  • spoiler alert: ofc he deserves them
  • usually the one to initiate anything physical between himself and s/o but he also likes to be surprised when they wrap an arm around his waist or his shoulders or come in for a kiss.
  • super loves kissing, this guy
  • also a huge cuddler, he’ll get right up on in there and just drape himself over his s/o while they’re maybe not paying as much attention to him

yusuke

  • so this oblivious boy here only knows about two things alright
  • those two things are art and being hungry food
  • he’s never dated anyone or even been interested in dating anyone? like honestly it just really never crossed his mind, he’s such an oblivious bean
  • but then s/o comes along and all of a sudden he’s thinking about more than painting and his empty stomach food. he’s thinking about their hair in the sunlight and how they stand in this particular way and their face when they smile
  • yusuke would never ever let his s/o think they’re any less beautiful than they are to him. he’d fill entire sketchbooks and half of his portfolio with portraits and drawings and watercolors of them–you name the medium and he’s getting his hands dirty in it trying to show them how he sees them
  • he’s so passionate and intense about everything of course he’d be the same about his s/o, too. describing them at length to other people using flowery words and possibly sounding like he’s about to cry from their sheer loveliness
  • yusuke would also be unable to keep his hands to himself when it comes to his s/o. when they’re out in public he has to be touching them practically at all times. arms around the waist or around their shoulders, holding hands, sitting close so their legs touch. it’s entirely unconscious
  • and when they’re alone and he’s not taking the time to add another sketch to his collection, he’s running his hands up and down their arms, tangling his fingers in their hair, nosing at their neck. he loves to take in every detail and texture so he can pour the passion into his artwork later
  • obv he’s pretty confident and outgoing, and initiates contact with them fairly often, but he’s not really a dominating personality in the relationship
  • there would be a lot of give and take
  • so in the end now yusuke thinks about three things
  • art, how his stomach is growling food, and his s/o

akechi

  • alright so like
  • goro has two kind of “modes” when it comes to people and relationships
  • there’s goro the “detective prince” who is on tv and always polite and courteous and appropriate
  • and then there’s goro at home who is…significantly less family friendly
  • in public he’d be all about quietly broadcasted signs of affection, like brushing his s/o’s cheek with his hand or leaning in close to look in their eyes or holding hands in a way that’s subtle but easy to photograph.
  • because he’s all about that pr, you know, he knows what to do to get the cameras going and tabloids rolling out the articles. nothing too overt or inappropriate would ever happen in public because he’s trying to keep his image
  • when asked about his relationship with s/o he’d be carefully discreet, citing their privacy and saying he can’t give details but always gushing a little anyway because he “just can’t help it”
  • in private, though, he’s almost an entirely different person
  • a very hungry lover, with a possessive grip around s/o’s wrist or waist, leaning on them all the time and choosing to speak directly in their ear when he can because he loves the way it makes them shiver
  • he’d be kind of overwhelming in his intensity and almost always have control of the situation
  • also??? v jealous. doesn’t like to see his s/o with other people he sees as a threat to their relationship.
  • he’ll sometimes even forget that he’s got to maintain a public image and will take a possessive hold on s/o to keep them “safe” with him
  • and holy jeez is he ever protective
  • (he’ll totally ruin ur life if you dare say a word against his s/o)

mishima

  • lol i know y’all prolly don’t wanna hear about him BUT I LOVE THIS BOY
  • complete and total oblivious nerd
  • he wouldn’t even realize he and s/o were dating until like the third or forth time they went out somewhere and s/o tried to kiss him
  • not even lying, he’d probably assume s/o was just joking around when they were flirting with him
  • (look his canon experiences have him w a r y of making assumptions anymore ok)
  • he’s such a dork, it’d be his first relationship and he’d have no idea what’s expected of him at all and do p much everything wrong
  • tries to “dress up” for the first date he’s aware is a date and fails utterly
  • tries to act more tough/manly/impressive/whatever because he thinks that’s what people are into
  • he has to have it explained to him that s/o likes him for HIM not for all these things he thinks s/o will like u dummy!!! just let them kiss u jeez
  • not confident at all, usually waits for s/o to take the lead
  • sometimes has unrealistic expectations of how a date or social event is supposed to go this poor young lech has no idea what he’s doing
  • but man he’d still love his s/o so much, he’d totally adore them and want to shower them with as much affection as possible he’d just be terrified of getting it wrong
  • always up for literally anything no matter the time or place and lack of experience is made up for by sheer eagerness
Monsta X in Bed

a/n: Once again, this is all based off of my personal opinion and surface look at their natal charts!

Shownu: Ok, so for this guy, sex is more of a learning experience rather than a romantic one. He’d be a little more dominant than Kihyun, though. He’d love surprising you by switching things up right when you’re about to finish, so that you’d have to start all over again. Mostly, he’d be down for whatever. You want to be restrained? Alright, cool. He has the silk ties and fluffy handcuffs (he wants to make sure you’re as comfortable as possible) Want to restrain him? Ok, just be sure to use the silk because it feels the best. He’d honestly love it when you top him though. He’s such a BIG dude who often intimidates with just his presence, so having you control him would be a nice change for him. Expect lots of pillow talk afterwards and maybe a glass of wine for the real ‘love-making’.

Wonho: Ok, so if you want a F.R.E.A.K. call Hoseok. He naturally OOZES sex appeal, but especially so in the bedroom. When it comes to his lover, he switches between accommodating and demanding. It’s a good mix, though, don’t worry. He’d be quite the dominant and feisty fucker. I’m talking light BDSM (blind-folding, being tied up, soft humiliation, etc.) He would love to dirty talk you while in the act because he loves watching you squirm. He’d also be the king of aftercare because this guy, deep down, just loves making you feel amazing.

Minhyuk: We all know how lovable this guy is, but he is even more so within the confines of the bedroom. Deep inside of him, he has some pretty intense and even dark fantasies regarding sex. You would help bring out some of that darkness because everyone should embrace at least a little bit of their dark side. Once it’s out, it’s out. Once submissive, a flame would ignite within him, and he’d become the most dominant lover of them all. Lots of biting, smacking your ass, slight humiliation, and dirty, dirty, DIRTY things whispered in your ear. But then it’d be over and he’d bring you water and pinch your cheeks with that disarming ass smile of his. Like???

Kihyun: I’ve got one word for this dude: submissive. Literally, you can do whatever you want with him, and he’d be completely pliant beneath you. He’d love it when you were on top and dirty talking the hell out of him. He’s sensual creature who loves the physical pleasure of sex, and may even see the act as being strictly physical. The time afterward would be the ‘love-making’ part (drawing a bath for you both, sharing wine, cuddling, pillow talk, etc.) He’d love it when you brought him new ideas for sex positions, and would totally do them. He’d be the type to read up on it so he could make sure it was perfect (lol he’s too precious) Sex, for him, would be more of an intellectual experience, but certainly no less passionate or HOT.

Hyungwon: OK, SO LISTEN. IN MY OPINION, HE IS THE MOST DADDY OF THEM ALL, AND POSSIBLY THE ONLY ONE I WOULD ACTUALLY CALL DADDY. We only ever see like a total of three emotions out of this kid on television, and that’s because he’s a super private person. That one time he was asked if he’d ever seen porn, and he was like ‘nah’, he wasn’t lying. He was more than likely out there actually DOING it, so that he didn’t feel the need to watch it. He’s a conservative lover, though. He won’t do it with just anybody, but when he falls in love with you, and takes that next step…get ready for your mind and body to be B.L.O.W.N. Making love with Hyungwon would be earth shattering, so plan to not have a voice when it’s all done. I don’t foresee any particular kinks other than just dominating the hell out of you. He’d be super cuddly afterward, though, because he’s sated and in love omg.

Jooheon: This one is a devious little thing. He’d be the type to turn sex into a competition (one that he’d definitely win lol) He’s definitely a naughty boy in bed. Sometimes things seem out of the blue, but he’s actually been planning it for days. Car sex? Yeah, he’d already thought of that a few days before. Sex in the practice room? He’d written out just how it’d go beforehand. He enjoys being in control in bed, so expect to never be on top (unless he asks you to be) I see him having a daddy kink or some kind of master kink. He’d love for you to call him daddy while you’re on your knees. Something about that kind of influence and power really turns him on. But don’t get him wrong – he’d never finish before you. Even though he loves power (and orgasm denial lol) he’d always let you finish before him because, ultimately, your pleasure matters the most to him.

Changkyun: Based on interviews, and just by looking at the dude, he doesn’t seem much like a sex fiend – this is correct (lmao). But don’t get me wrong, Changkyun loves sex, but it has to be with someone he feels completely comfortable with. It takes him a little while to open up to you sexually because he has a fantasy in his mind, and if you do not fit his fantasy then he shuts down. Eventually, you ground his daydreaming ass and get to business. The good thing about Changkyun is that he LOVES to experiment. He’s like a sex fairy or something (lol) Just tell him what you’d like to try, and he’ll be up for it. Don’t worry – whips and chains excite this one.

Where There’s Smoke

NurseyDex, 3600 words, Rated Teen, Fluff/First Date/First Kiss (here on AO3)

For day six of @nurseydexweek! There aren’t nearly enough fics about the SMH folks going to WaterFire, so here’s my contribution.


“My sweet, sweet frog.”

Dex groans, the noise muffled into the pillow that he’s holding over his face. “I’m not doing so great, Bitty.”

“You’re gonna be fine.” Bitty climbs onto his own bed and sits against the wall, pulling Dex’s legs over his lap. “I still think that for your own sanity, you need to do something.”

Dex pulls the pillow away so Bitty can get the full brunt of his expression and how much he does not appreciate that suggestion. “Um, no. We’re, like, living together and actually getting along, and I don’t wanna do anything to screw it up.”

“Sweetie.”

“I can’t just ask him out!”

“And why not?”

“Because the thought of it makes me wanna throw up.”

Bitty sighs and pats Dex’s shin. This is a familiar argument, but usually Bitty gives up sooner. Not that Dex can blame him, really, with how often he slinks across the hall to Bitty’s room just to whine about his pathetic crush on Nursey.

“Then you need end up on a date without actually asking him on a date,” he says firmly, and Dex raises his eyebrows.

“That seems like a clichéd, awful idea.”

Bitty rolls his eyes. “I’m giving you an opportunity here. Jack and I have been meaning to go to WaterFire, and y’all should just come with us. There’s one this weekend.”

“I have no idea what that is,” Dex admits.

Bitty waves his hand. “It’s this public art installation thing, there’s a lot of fire and it’s really romantic. And it’s right up Nursey’s alley, he’ll totally be up for it.”

“Are you sure?”

“Trust me.”

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Sharing Can’t Be Wrong... - Dean x Reader x Sam (One Shot)

A/N: So, you all wanted this to continue. I left it open as a teaser, and it went over really well. Now, the full thing is here. Who doesn’t want the Winchesters to share them? Hope you all enjoy! As always feedback appreciated!

@kazchester-fanfiction @unefemmedelettres @16wiishes @whatsupmara

Also tagging @growningupgeek @mrswhozeewhatsis @manawhaat @phoenixia67 @arryn-nyx @lovehelpmewrite where you all seemed to enjoy the drabble. If you don’t want tagged, let me know, and I’ll remove it!

Originally posted by thesoullesshunter


Originally posted by sincerelysaraahh

Warnings: Smut. No plot here what so ever. Just sex. Not much editing.

Word Count: Roughly 3500

“Dean?” You looked at him in confusion as he pulled back. Leaving you sitting on the large wooden table near the entrance of the bunker. Lips swollen. Confusion dancing in your darkened eyes.

“You know I love you, right?” His hand rubbed against your thigh, pushing up your skirt further. You’d dressed up a bit for date night.

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jdscanvas  asked:

I usually have answer for questions like these...but what specifically about Mobius: XYL made it so horrendous that not even someone with actual writing talent like Flynn could save it? I'd say that it was just a blank slate and that any competent writer could fix it.

*Sighs, pulls out a bottle of whiskey and a shot glass. Pours the glass. Takes the shot* 

Alright, before I get into the specifics, I’m gonna contextualize a few things for you. I want you to picture a comic book, one built primarily (but not exclusively) around action, and despite the intense quality issues it tends to suffer from its still pretty popular, with a fairly vocal fanbase. One day a character is teased- the daughter of a major character, hinting towards an amazing story that will show the future of your favorite characters. Years past, the hype builds up. A hint of what’s to come is given in a story where this mystery character is featured, pulling forth an intriguing scenario in which her father, one of the heroes, will become a villain years later. 

Finally it is announced- at long last, this much anticipated storyline is going to happen! We’re going to see the future of the setting, the future of the characters and their offspring! Oh, what things will await? What mysteries will build in the interim? What new villains will operate in the future? What will the children of the heroes be like? 

Well, eventually, the storyline finally comes. All that waiting, all that excitement and hype, all of that theorizing… and all it amounted to was a fart in the wind, all noise and fury signifying nothing. 

That, in a nutshell, was Mobius 25YL. 

Now let us get into specifics. Forgive me if I miss anything, for there is a LOT to get into, so I’ll just summarize what comes off the top of my head. 

-Firstly, there was Lara-Su herself. Oh, poor Lara-Su. That’s really one of the great tragedies of the Pre-Flynn era. She had the design. She had the concept. She had the hype- people were doing fanart and fanfiction of her long before she debuted properly in the book. And then 25YL came along, and what we saw was… 

….yeah, that. See, it turned out that she wasn’t being trained as a guardian. She was just a normal leading a normal teenage life, and my GOD it was boring. Our opening scene involves her thumping her stupid cousin on the head with a book for insulting the Guardians, and this? This is how she became a Guardian. After everything we had been led to believe, everything we had been wanting to see, the mysterious, much-anticipated Daughter of Knuckles… turned out to be a whiny, entitled little rich girl who literally whined her way into being a Guardian. Not that we got a chance to see her tenure as a guardian, oooh no- it was FAR more important to see her sweet sixteen and a sleepover with her friends, and of course pool party antics. Which brings us to the next point….

-…namely that this story went *nowhere*. Like it was literally the last few issues that the damn plot moved forward and reached a climax. THe build-up took a back seat to what Penders evidently felt was what the audieance REALLY wanted- DOMESTIC DRAMA! Marvel in Lara-Su getting in fights at school because someone had an opinion! Wonder in the glories of her sweet sixteen! Behold the pool parties! Amaze at Sonic’s son being a little pervert! Hey, do you know what we needed more of? Sonic and Knuckles getting in a belching contest at a dinner party! And so on and so forth- the whole thing was basically a domestic drama, a really, really cheesy and badly written one, and these aspects of the story overtook everything else. Even worse, this story dragged on and on and on at a snails pace, and as I said, the only remotely exciting thing happened literally within the last few issues, with the build up being drawn out and unengaging. 

-The future was boring. Very, very boring, and even worse, we were told exactly how it got that way. What portions of the story weren’t dedicated to observing the Domestic Life Of The Teenage Echidna were spent infodumping and expositing about the events of the past that led to the present time. And at the present time? Everything was so peachy and perfect it could make you sick. There was no danger, no new menaces to fight in the Post-Robotnik Mobius, everything was just bland and happy and nooo real problems whatsoever. The Kingdom of Acorn now ruled Mobius, and Angel Island was now a superpower, and all the enemies of the past were either defeated or domesticated (more on that below). There was nothing to draw people in. No conflict to engage the readers. Even worse, ss this at the time was regarded as ‘the’ future and not just a ‘What-If’ (the debate of which caused an infamous feud between Penders and Bollers), the exposition ensured that there could not even be a potential mystery in figuring out how things got to this point, because the entire future was now laid bare before us. And since we now knew that this achingly perfect and tranquil future was to come, and exactly HOW Eggman was going to be defeated, there was little reason to become invested in past stories. What’s the point of sticking around when you know how its all gonnna go? Every conflict that took place in the past was now rendered irrelevant thanks to this future, which pretty much gave away the ending. 

-On top of all that, the developments of the characters from the past who were featured in this future were… nonsensical, and in some cases deeply insulting. Knuckles, for example, who had grown up in the wilderness away from cities and the like, was now in a position of power as not only Guardian but the head of the EST, and living very comfortably in a manor, with a maid of all things. Even accounting for the fact that the years change people, this doesn’t really feel like the kind of life Knuckles would ever want to live or COULD ever want to live, instead feeling like a reflection of Penders’ own ideal for what a happy ending should look like. Worse though was what happened to Julie-Su… while her depiction as such was not always very stellar, there was at least a token amount of effort applied to depicting her as a capable soldier and action girl, and prior to the release of this he swore up and down that she would STILL be a badass. This was false. This was very, very false. She was pretty much a stay at home mom who did upkeep on the house, acting as a *painfully* cliche ‘50s Housewife’ at utter odds with her prior depiction. While there is nothing wrong with being a domestic or anything like that, the fact was that this was definitely not how anybody ever wanted to see Julie-Su, and even worse, despite Penders’ touting of the ‘non-traditional’ nature of their marriage (which I should add was a reflection of the fact that he and his own wife operate under a common-law marriage), the fact of the matter was that the marriage was even MORE tradtional and bland than most marriages in media at that time. 

And it didn’t end there either. Sonic was now King of the world and pretty much going through a midlife crisis, and Sally, who actually WAS a leader of men during her youth and Queen of Mobius, was now happy and content with taking a backseat to Sonic and letting him make all the major decisions. There are many arguments about whether or not Sonic should have ever been a king or if it fits his character, but the point of order is, nobody at all wanted to see THIS from Sonic, or Sally. The decision to make him King was especially baffling because in real life, that’s not how European monarchy’s work. Sonic is not nobility, and even if he were, his lower rank would ensure that he would only ever be a prince or a regent at best, while Sally would be the one calling the shots thanks to her being higher ranked than him to begin with. 

And then there was Lien-Da. Recall how I said some threats became domesticated? Well this here is Exhibit A- wanna now what kind of future Lien-Da has after a lifetime of terrorism, deceit and murder? She’s living comfortabltly in suburbia with her son (with no mention or hint of who the father could be), and is just so gosh darned chummy with her half-sister that they gossip like a couple of old hens. I mean sure, Lien-Da helped murder Julie’s mother and their father, and then had Julie mindwiped twice-over, to say nothing of spending generations trying to murder the Guardians, but it’s all coooool, brah! No hard feelings, no bad blood whatsoever! Why, even Dimitri himself confirms that all of Lien-Da’s ambitions would never ever come true anyway, so hey, why carry a grudge? Family trumps all!

Yeah, I digress. Whatever people envisioned for the future of the characters they loved, this wasn’t it. At all. 

-The kids sucked, both as characters and from a design standpoint. For visuals, Lara-Su got off easy, having a reasonably unique and recognizable design that made her an instant hit with a lot of fans… the fact that Penders didn’t design her might have had something to do with that though. Everyone else? Clone children. Clone children as far as the eye can see. Literally they were all just traces of their parents with different clothes, and they had even less going on with regards to personality. The one with the most distinct personality was Manik, who was such a loathesome little creeper that everyone kind of wished he really WAS just as bland and forgettable as everyone else. While obviously children are gonna resemble their parents, making them flat out clones was just a step too far (sadly this would plague the sequel series as well). There have been many fan ideas and conceptions of what the children of our heroes would look like- all of them were better, or at least made more of an effort, than this. 

-While the book might have been called “Mobius: 25 Years Later”, it was actually more like “Angel Island Twenty Five Years Later”. Given that this storyline started out as a special called Knuckles: Twenty Years Later, this isn’t really that unexpected, but for a storyline that billed itself as the future of Mobius itself, the focus on Angel Island at the expense of everything else left a bad taste in everyone’s mouth. WHile it would be impossible to cover everyone, it was Knuckles and his family that got the most coverage, with the extended cast getting cameos or token mentions regardless of how important they were in the past. Bunnie and Antoine didn’t show up, Tails only showed up much later, we barely get any action from the other Chaotix… you get the idea. Even worse, Knuckles was pretty much revealed to be the destined savior of the planet, the one to finally defeat Eggman instead of Sonic, and the reveal of what was causing problems in the future would eventually be revealed to be SOnic’s fault! The Knuckles favoritism was incredibly grating, and incredibly disappointing. People wanted to see the future of *Mobius*, not JUST all the parts most relevant to Knuckles. This was the storylien that really did much to establish how little Penders cared about the title character of the series and how hellbent he was on ensuring the ‘legacy’ of his personal pet despite the Knuckles series having been gone for years by that point. 

-On a retroactive front, the reveal of Rotor being gay, or rather the rationale and circumstances of it, did a lot to taint the perception of the series. Even when the series was going on, Penders hinted that one of the cast was gay, and didn’t reveal who it was until years after he had left the book…it just happened to be Rotor, who just happened to be tortured in the new 30YL storyline while his supposed lover, Cobor, was dead. That he timed the reveal in such a way that it made Flynn look like a homophobe was suspect enough, but his reasoning behind the reveal was especially troubling, with him declaring that Rotor was gay due to his shyness. Adding insult to injury, there was absolutely no chemistry between Cobor and Rotor, like at all. In a fandom where two characters so much as looking at eachother too long can result in shipping, this was especially noteworthy, as nobody at all shipped Cobor and Rotor before the reveal… and after, for that matter. Penders loudly patting himself on the back for this despite how little he had done in-story to indicate it did a lot to taint the storyline in people’s eyes, and forever made Rotor’s sexuality a touchy subject due to knowing that Penders would always be eager to take credit for it despite having done nothing to build it up. While there was only so much one could really do at the time it was written, that doesn’t excuse the fact that there was so little affection and so little to read into with regards to Cobor and Rotor, due to the fact that believable, human interaction is well beyond Penders’ capacity as a writer. 

There is probably more I am not considering. Anyone who has anything to add is free to do so. But in conclusion? For everything that this story promised to be, and for all the ways that promise was broken, this whole thing became a black hole of wasted potential, a vortex of suckage that would consume everything in proximity, and that is why despite everything, a lot of people are not that eager to see it re-visted, believing that its just impossible to un-anchor it from the awful, awful story that spawned, and that there is nothing worth salvaging from it. 

They might have a point. 

Friends with Kids

I see your friends with benefits fics and raise you friends with kids.

A/N: So this started out as a list fic and then turned into 5,000 words.
 (Ao3)

For your consideration. Picture Holster as a coach for peewee hockey and there’s this little girl, let’s call her Piper, and she’s super cute and her parents are literally always late to pick her up from practice. Once Holster had to call them and remind them to come pick her up cause practice had ended an hour ago - and just, this girl is so awesome and loves hockey even though she kind of sucks at it and she carries this little Dora the Explorer backpack with her everywhere. 

So whenever she’s waiting for her parents to pick her up she’ll grab a book or toy or coloring book out of her back pack and at first she’d just play quietly while waiting, but then Holster tells the other coaches they can go on ahead (cause they’re always anxious to leave once practice is done since it’s unpaid volunteer work) and he starts talking to her. Eventually one day after practice she just sort of climbs up into Holster’s lap while they’re waiting in the lobby and gives him her book to read to her and his heart just? melts a little honestly

And he legit always comes home to Ransom - they’re roommates, again because Holster tried the whole nine to five thing three states away from Ransom and he would rather be barely making ends meet by working at the local hockey rink than making six figures if it means he gets to spend every day with his best friend - but that’s a whole other story. But anyway he is always talking about how smart Piper is and what funny thing she did that day. Ransom even feels like he kind of knows her because Holster talks about her so much. 

One day when they have a game on a day that Ransom has off from the hospital he surprises Holster by showing up. He talks to the other parents in the stands and quickly figures out which kid is Piper, because when they come out onto the ice Holster is practically carrying her and it takes almost a full three minutes of coaxing before she lets go of him and skates over to her spot on the ice. 

Ransom thinks that’s like the cutest thing ever. He asks the parents who are sitting near him whose kid she is and all the parents are saying she isn’t theirs and Ransom is confused before one of the moms sitting nearby asks who he’s talking about again. He points to number three on the ice and the mom tells him that Piper is in foster care and the parents – “are a steaming pile of shit.”

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Category 2, number 13: “Best friend’s younger sibling who suddenly got hot” sex

@lamenart First of all, you can have anything you want, I would literally die for you after your drawings. Second, this is the AU I like to call “the one where Mari and Viktor meet years before he meets Yuuri, and they become penpals.” This is part 1 lmao, I’ll post part 2 tomorrow!

PART 1 OF 3

By some strange twist of fate, Viktor meets Mari before he actually meets her brother.

It happens during his first Grand Prix skating in the senior division, when he gets assigned the NHK Trophy for one of his qualifying events. Viktor is excited—he’s never been to Japan before, and the only thing he likes better than skating itself is the amount he gets to travel because of it. When he isn’t practicing his routines or pestering Yakov about changing his choreography, Viktor spends most of his time looking up all the fun things he plans to do in the two or three days he gets to spend outside of competition, which means sightseeing and food tourism and talking to locals.

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Back to the Drawing Board

*click thru to read on ao3

written by: Meghan | @bellamyfrecklefaceblake

prompt: ‘You’ve been sketching your soulmate’s face since you were old enough to pick up a pencil, the drawings become more realistic through the years as the day you meet comes near.’ for anonymous

word count: 2881

Clarke has been drawing the same face for as long as she can remember. As she ages, the face ages, looking more and more real until she’s twenty-three and the person she draws looks so real he could be standing right in front of her.


Clarke is used to waking up in the middle of the night with a strong urge to break out her charcoal pencils. She’s used to sketching the same face every other month since she first knew how to hold a pencil. Each year—each drawing—the face becomes less abstract and more solid.

It’s not only her skills that are getting better, but the image in her head grows clearer. When she was younger, she was never sure if it was a boy or a girl that she was sketching. She knew they had freckles and unruly hair that was never the same length twice. But with age and time, it became clear that the face is male, it’s strong, and it’s more attractive than most men she’s seen in real life.

She doesn’t know who he is or what he does or where lives. But she does know—or, at least, suspect—that he’s her soulmate.

Soulmates aren’t guaranteed in life, but there are certain people who find their soulmates in various ways. Clarke thinks that the urge to sketch this one particular face is her way. The face ages along with her, maybe a little older, but at the same pace.

And when she is twenty-three years old, she wakes up and the face she sketches is as clear as day. Her hands move rapidly, creating the lines of his face with unmatched precision—not a single stray line, not a hair out of place, not a freckle forgotten. He’s wearing glasses and smirking ever so slightly. It’s the realest he’s ever looked—like he’s standing right in front of her. And when she stops and scoots her chair away from the table, she finally breathes again. And she can’t look away.

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LadyNoir July: Prompt: Explosive Don’t You Dare!

LadyNoir

Rated: T

Prompt: Explosive

LadyNoir July

Don’t You Dare!

Ladybug approached her partner, the media circus was beginning to swarm. Right now, she wasn’t worried about the Akuma victim, the press, or anyone else. She was worried about her partner.

“Chat…?” Her voice was soft and he flinched at her voice. “It’s okay, it wasn’t you.” She whispered. Her hand moved to touch his cheek. He had flinched at the touch before closing his eyes and leaning into her touch.

“I’m sorry… I’m so sorry, I didn’t mean for it to happen…”

“It wasn’t your fault, Chat. I am not angry, you didn’t mean for that to happen.” She moved to gently pull him towards her.

“Ladybug! Ladybug!” The press began pushing at the police that had created a distance between the two heroes and the press.

“Go… I’ll be okay.” Chat whispered, moving to pull away from her touch.

Her lips turned into a frown and she moved, slowly pulling away. “I’ll make it quick. You are so much more important.”

The look on his face told her that it meant so much that she said that.

Her body turned toward the press, her eyes narrowed slightly.

“I’m making this quick.” She spoke, walking towards the press.

“Ladybug, how tough was this Akuma?”

“It was one of the tougher Akuma, but I am happy to say everything has been settled thanks to myself and Chat Noir. I couldn’t have done any of this without him.”

Chat was her amazing partner, and he hadn’t had to help her, to accept her faults and all, yet he did and still claimed to love her. Him being controlled by an Akuma wouldn’t change that.

He wasn’t just her partner, he was also her best friend.

“Ladybug, how is it with a sidekick that often gets Akumatized?!” One of the members called out.

Half of the group quickly moved away from her, not wanting to be anywhere near the woman that just insulted half of the super duo.

“Excuse me, I must have heard you wrong.” The sickeningly sweet tone in her voice made Alya from within the crowd. This woman as going to get it. “Because it seems like you just insinuated that Chat is less than I am.”

“Well, isn’t he?” Another member asked, lifting her recorder closer.

More people shifted away. Alya stood in disbelief, but quickly flipped on her camera as many others did.

“M-M’lady… It’s….”

“If you dare say it is okay, I will never forgive you.” She turned to look at Chat. Her voice was sharp. “You’re not my damn sidekick.”

The red clad female stalked towards the press members that made these comments. The police had quickly moved out of her way.

“Let me make something clear. If you ever… EVER… insult him again. You’ll have to deal with me.”

She went to turn back towards Chat Noir.

“So… is that a yes?”

Alya quite literally slapped a hand to her face.

“That’s it!” The teen turned around. “Listen up you damn bitch.” Some people gasped at her using curses. “Chat isn’t my sidekick, he is my partner. My partner who’s probably saved your ass more times than you can count, since you can’t seem to understand what I was saying earlier. You and your little friend over there.”

The fury on the ravenette hero’s face kept Chat from saying a word. His heart hammered in his chest, both from appreciation and worry. He watched as her earrings turned from four spots to three.

“I’m going to make this very clear… to all of you.” She snarled. “You ever hurt Chat. With your words or actions and I’ll let Pairs burn. I’ll let Hawkmoth burn it to the damn ground before I let any of you hurt him!” Her voice was so angry, she was shaking. “I’ll sooner give up being Ladybug then let anyone insult my best friend and partner. He’s the only reason I am Ladybug!”

She spun on her heel and moved to grab Chat’s hand. She wasn’t so much as sparing them another damn word. She was so angry.


Chat hadn’t said a word, letting her pull him along. The female had so much as dragged him along for her yoyo ride. He hadn’t argued, just stuck close t the fuming female.

“Ladybug…” He finally spoke when they stopped on a flat rooftop away from the crowds of people. The area was so quiet and empty. They were likely in the warehouse district. “It’s okay. I messed up and got Akumatized. I made this harder on you and—.”

DON’T YOU DARE!” She screamed. Her temper finally at its peak like a volcano.

“You, Chat Noir, are one of the most selfless, kind hearted, most amazing people I have ever met! And if you think for a damned second I am going to let even you talk bad about yourself you’re wrong!” She was now using her temper on him, but he wasn’t sure if she was angry at him or for him.

Her words kept spilling.

“You sacrifice so much, you’ve nearly died! YOU HAVE DIED!” He didn’t remember that incident. “You’ve done so much… You’ve taken so much shit from them and everyone else. I know I don’t say it enough because I am a damned idiot, but you’re so amazing Chat! If anyone deserves to be the hero it is you, and I won’t let anyone…. Not a single damn person put you down. You mean too much to me. No one is allowed to hurt you! Not even yourself!”

He watched as she started pacing, many of her statements were being repeated, likely from losing track but being so angry she had to keep talking.

“I need you, Chat! I want you by my side. As my partner. And those fucking bitches had the nerve to call you a side—Oomp!”

Her breath was stolen away as he burrowed his body into hers. Despite the height difference she sunk to the ground with him, pulling him against her the best she could.

Five rapid beeps finally drew her attention before a flash of magic. She had been so lost in her anger, she forgot how close to transforming she was.

Her eyes slid to Chat, his face was curried into her chest, right at her shoulder. He didn’t so much as try and look up at her. “Tikki… get a cookie from my bag.” Her voice softened as she stroked Chat’s hair.

“Okay…” Tikki paused to nuzzle Marinette and then Chat. She was so proud of Marinette. The Kwami sleepily burrowed herself into the purse, nibbling on a cookie.

“Chat… my sweet, caring Minou….” Marinette whispered and stroked his hair, drawing him close to her. “Never let anyone talk down about you, Chat. You are so important to me… to everyone. There will be idiots like those two. You’re so much more then what they thing. Only one person should matter.”

“Only one person does matter… you…” His words were muffled, and she felt the heat of a few wet drops through her shirt.

“Oh Chat.” She held him close. “Even me… It is your opinion that matters the most…. And well, if you can’t see how amazing you are. I’ll show you. You see me the same way I see you, Chat.” Her head rested on his.

He did not cry as she had. Only a few tears, before he clutched her close.

“M’lady… no one has ever stood up for me before…”

Those words broke her heart. Her explosive temper forgotten and her arms pulled him as close as she possibly could. Her lips briefly brushed the crown of his head.

“I will always stand up for you, Chat. I will protect you.” She whispered to him.

“But I always mess up… How many times have I been hit by an Akuma to attack you?”

Marinette glanced at her purse where Tikki was peeking up at her, cookie only half eaten.

“Chat, I know this feeling you’re feeling very well…” She spoke softly, smoothing back his messy hair.

“You know how I feel about myself… and I’m fixing that with your help.” She felt him nod and a weak smile graced her lips.

“You don’t know that I was ready to give up being Ladybug, that I had taken off my earrings and put Tikki and them into the bag of a friend of mine… someone who I thought would have been a better hero.”

“No!” Chat snapped. “No one is a better hero then you are!” She felt like he was restraining himself to keep from looking her in the face as she said that.

“Shh, this was back during Stoneheart… when I messed up.” He quieted down and relaxed against her. “I felt like it was too big a mistake. I hadn’t purified the Akuma, and thus so many people were changed into rock creatures, and Ivan was turned back into one.”

“What made you change your mind…?”

“Well… I had put Tikki in this girl’s bag, and then Stoneheart attacked again and she ran off without her bag… By the time I found her, you needed help and so did the Ladyblog girl. I couldn’t let you get hurt…” Marinette pressed another kiss to his head. “Then when the police confronted us about how I messed up… You stood up for me. Believed in me when I didn’t even believe in myself.”

Tikki flew up, having finished her cookie. A soft mumble of “Spots on” filled the air before the pink light took over.

Her gloved hands cupped his cheeks after pulling him from her shoulder. Blue met green and she smiled gently, “I believe in you, Chat Noir. We will all make mistakes… and I will be there to help you with yours, just as you help me with mine.”

“Okay, M’lady…” He moved to nuzzle into her palm. Her fingers moving to stroke his cheek.

BONUS

Ladybug watched him, moving her hand to stroke his cheek and occasionally running her other hand through his hair.

He was so content with being pet and caressed, and right now she wanted to help him get back to happy.

Her eyes blinked in confusion as she heard a…rumbling noise?

She looked at Chat, the source of the noise.

“Are you purring?’

Green eyes shot open and his entire body jerked away from hers, “No!” He gave her a look as if she just read his diary, finding his deepest, darkest secret.

She held in her laugh, but her lips tilted into a joyful smile. He was so cute sometimes…

Dance With Me

Originally posted by babustyles

I’M ALIVE! I promise. But I know, I’ve been gone for aaages, and there’s no excuse for me other than the worst writer’s block. Again, I’m sorry. I can’t promise that I’ll post every week like I used to, but I can say that I’m still on here, even when I’m not writing :) Hope you enjoy! x

Word Count: 1,775 (A lot shorter than my usual, I’m sorry.)

This is Dunkirk!Harry and inspired by this imagine. (Yes I read Bucky stories, don’t judge me. Sebastian is beautiful.) Feedback is greatly appreciated.


“Dance with me.” You utter, fingertips lacing with his. A breath escapes his lips as you tug him into the empty space of your living room, running small circles into the back of his hand. 

The music plays further as your bodies connect like puzzle pieces. Your chest presses to his and you sigh, resting your head against his collarbones. You gently lay kisses onto the area as he squeezes your hands softly. Inhaling his scent, you lift your head and meet with his eyes. They pierce your own but remain sweet and full of admiration.

The record player is a few meters away from you, belting out the song though you can’t help but sing along.

“And with this feeling I’ll forget, I’m in love now.”

The words drip out with passion and Harry leans in to close the gap. 

Keep reading

About stuttering

Hey, writer folk: 

I’m gonna drop a little education on a speech impediment I have: a stutter! 

Why? Mainly because most people write stutters terribly and it annoys the heck out of me.

So, let’s start with the basics: 

Stuttering is a speech disorder. Most people think of it as being where the flow of speech is interrupted by the involuntary repetition of sounds, words, or phrases (this is the sterotypical stutter you see in movies, though even that’s inaccurate which I’ll get to later). However, it also involves involuntary prolongation of sounds (I call it getting stuck on a sound, cuz that’s what it feels like. when this happens for me it is like I lengthen a word for no apparent reason. “geeeeeeting mmmmmilk. Want some?” type of thing), and involuntary stops (it’s like my mouth just dammed up the flow of words here - I know exactly what I want to say, I just can’t get my mouth to say it. This is the most frustrating because when I can make words I can still speech-communicate but if I have a stubborn stop I can’t at all - autistic loss of words feels very similar but more long lasting and also sometimes involves language structure and word retrieval as well). Lastly, it can also involve involuntary insertion of meaningless sounds - ums, ahs, and ers are pretty common. Some stutterers, me included, often curse when we’re having trouble as well (and I dunno why but the curse for me usually comes out pretty easily even though the sentence itself is not. Don’t ask me why, but it happens - I think cuz speaking with a stutter is like trying to hold onto a handful of sand where the harder you try to say something, the harder it is to say.  

Now, how does stuttering happen in real life

For one, people who stutter usually have more trouble at the start of the sentence, and less as it goes on. Movies almost always get this wrong. A person who writes stutters well would write “I have a stutter” with a severe stutter less like this: 

“I-I-I-I-I h-h-have a-a-a-a-a st-st-st-st-stutter.” 

And more like this: 

“I-I, uh, I have, uuuuh, I hhhhhh- fuck - I hhhhaaaaa, um, I have- I have a- um, I have a stutter.” 

Do you get the difference? It starts off with a lot of trouble at the beginning, and gets smoother as you work through. 

Secondly, stutters are variable. Meaning they change depending on the situation. For me, the more anxious I am, the more I stutter. The more angry I am, the more I stutter (often, I can’t communicate aloud at all if I’m furious, my involuntary stops get so bad. I can have a whole speech I want to say in my head and nothing can get out and it just makes me more furious). On the other hand, if I’m calm or relaxed, I often don’t stutter at all. That movie or book character who has a severe stutter always and forever without ever changing? Doesn’t really happen very often. There are people like that, but not many. Far more common are people like me, who can talk effectively - maybe not completely fluently, but who can make effective communication in a fairly efficient manner - some or even a lot of the time, but who in some situations can’t talk well or at all. And sometimes, there’s a person who doesn’t seem to stutter at all (probably does but not in a way that people who don’t know stutters will notice) a lot of the time, who will in a high stress situation suddenly have a really hard time communicating. 

Thirdly, a lot of people with stutters have more trouble with certain phrases or sounds than with others, and will try to rephrase their thoughts if they know that what they’re about to say is going to hit a lot of trouble. This is why I am absolutely terrible at oral exams - the stress of the exam drives my stutter into overdive (though I can give a talk without stuttering, go figure - I imagine because it’s scripted cuz scripts seem to help for me), and sometimes I literally can’t give the correct answer because I can’t say it, and instead of just giving the oral exam, it’s like I’m doing a second exam at the same time trying to figure out how I can actually get what I want to say out around my stutter. 

Fourthly, stuttering is not just a kid thing. People of any age can stutter, and less than 1 in 5 of those who stutter past age 5 will stop stuttering before adulthood. Toddlers, however, very often start stuttering and then have their stutter resolve on its own within two years. Teenagers and adults who stutter will never not stutter. Those stutters do not resolve - though they may reduce in severity. However if your story has the main character magically not stuttering anymore ever? Not going to happen. Learning to make peace with their stutter and communicate effectively around it even when it’s acting up, on the other hand? Actually happens. 

Lastly, how to help stuttering: Drawing the person’s attention to the stutter, teasing them, pressuring them to speak more quickly, advising them to stop and take a breath or take their time or what have you, and in general applying negative social pressure to stuttering are all counter-productive. By which I mean they make stuttering worse, and make it harder to speak smoothly. 

What actually does help? On a one-on-one basis, basically shutting up and letting the person with a stutter do their thing to get the words out without input or judgement. If what they want to say is obvious, you can substitute a word now and then (sometimes it helps me get past a block for someone to do that), but don’t play 20 questions and definitely don’t do any of the stuff in the previous paragraph. 

Additionally, I am told that modern therapy is helpful. Speech therapy I had as a kid was overall less than useful (with the exception of teaching me to try to re-phrase stuff I was blocking on which actually did help with real communication but the “concentrate on your mouth to make the sounds” stuff just made it worse honestly), but apparently it’s changed since then. 

And all of that ^^ should give you a start on how to write stuttering properly - though you should still do a lot of research on it and talk to people with stutters about their experience with stuttering stigma and stuff like that about how to deal with it.

EDIT: I should note that a user messaged me with a good point that I thought should be included, and that is this: not all people with stutters find the same things helpful. Frex, I find it useful if I’m completely blocking on an obvious word for someone else to substitute it, but this user absolutely hates that. If you know someone who stutters, ask before you start substituting words or anything like that - they’ll tell you what helps them. 

anonymous asked:

how'd you think even would propose to ikea? * cue heart eyes mushy

Even and ikea proposal huh? :P let’s see what I can do! This one has been in my inbox awhile… but I really do love it.

Tell me how ya’ll think a proposal would go down!

——-

“Babyyyy.”

Isak looks up from the Christmas tree where he had been stringing lights. “Hmm?”

Even fidgets from his place on the couch and Isak shoots him a look. Even never fidgets. He’s like the coolest person in the world and the coolest person remains fucking cool all the time. The only time Isak ever sees Even disheveled is when he’s having a bad day. Okay or when they’re having sex, but who can maintain a cool veneer when they’re struggling not to explode?

Eve clears his throat, and wow yes this is indeed a new development. “I was thinking.”

Isak grabs a Santa-shaped ornament and hung it just above a loop of bright Christmas light, “Always dangerous.”

“Yeah yeah, fuck you,” He turns back to his nervous boyfriend. Even took a breath, “I was thinking that we’ve been together for like- ever now.”

“4 years,” Isak mutters, grabbing another ornament (it was a homemade one that Even had made in his childhood. Of course, it was much prettier than anything Isak had ever attempted, damn him). “Not that I’m counting.”

“Yeah, 4 years. And I love you. So much. And, like, you’re the best thing that’s ever happened to me.”

Isak hides a grin into his shoulder, glancing back around to Even who’s staring at him with his fucking laser-beam stare. “I love you too.”

Even nods, like the words bring some kind of extra strength to him. Which is weird, because they’ve been saying that they loved each other for literally years now. Isak stiffens, fuck is he feeling an episode come on? Fuck, he thought they’d gotten the meds right the last time. It had been ages since they’d had a reoccurrence. Shit, Isak will have to switch some days around at work if he needs to take off.

Even smiles, “I can see your mind working.”

“Is everything okay?”

Isak grabs another ball to hang on the tree and Even’s assurance that everything is fine.

Behind him, Even clears his throat. “I know we agreed no presents until everyone got here, but do you see the red envelope? Open it.”

Curioser and curioser.

Neer one to say not to presents, Isak bends down, picking up the slim envelope and dragging his thumb under the flap to open it. Insider, there wasn’t a present at all. Just a piece of white paper that looked as if it had been folded and unfolded a couple of times.

The paper was split into two halves. Isak snorts at the call back to their ace methods of communication back in school. He reads on.

In this Universe, the first half headed.

The drawing was of Even and Isak, holding hands sitting on the couch and smiling with a Christmas tree in the background. They looked happy and content and everything Isak has wanted for them in the years since they’ve been together.

He moves on.

In Another Universe, the other side reads.

Isak felt his mouth go dry and knees go weak. He takes a startled breath and swallows.

The cartoon image was still of Isak and Even, but this time, Isak was standing- an elated expression on the little cartooned face.

And Even was on one knee in front of him, a little square box in his hand.

At the bottom of the second half: not all universes need to be different.

Slowly, like in a dream, Isak turned around.

And there Even was. On bended knee, looking nothing and everything  like the suave teenager he’s fallen in love with. Even shoots him a shy smile, opening his hand to see a little black leather box.

“Yes,” Isak says without hesistating.

Even opens his mouth and closes it, “You- uh- I had like a whole speech prepared.”

“Oh. Well by all means, just know that when you’re done, my answer is yes.”

Even faces splits, “That does lessen the pressure, I have to admit.” He takes a breath, “Isak. When I was 19, I saw you on the first day of school and I think I fell in love with you in that moment. You were the most beautiful boy I’d ever seen and I didn’t even look at boys like that, then. But then I got to know you, and you were everything I could have ever hoped for. You stood by me in the best of times and in the worst of times and you have never made me feel less than for being sick. It’s been a long time since school, baby, but I still look at you and see that brilliant boy in a snapback and hoodie and I want to spend the rest of my life with him. If that’s chill?”

“Oh my god,” Isak sniffs, trying to keep his eyes from filling with tears like a cheesy movie, “That’s chill.”

“Awesome. So, will you marry me?”

“Fucking- yes. Yes.”

Even stands up and slips a little gold band from the center of the box. He hold it up and waggles his eyebrows and fuck, Isak loves him so much. Isak holds out a shaking hand and when the band slips on perfectly, he immediately threads the hand in Even’s hair, pulling him down so that his lips can brush against his.

“I love you,” Isak says against Even’s lips, “this universe, next one, next one. I love you.”

Even brushes a hand over his cheek and kisses him again.

PARTS: 1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // epilogue
Pairing: Jimin x reader
Words: 7,303
Genre: smut, angst, supernatural au.
click here for warnings by part (potential spoilers).

When playing the lying game, there are but two rules. The first is to be convincing. Live the lie, breathe the lie, believe it so wholeheartedly it becomes your new truth. The second is to always remember there are other players in the game, some of whom have been playing it far longer than you.

16 years ago.

You were sitting on the floor, colouring in a picture you’d made for mom and dad in hopes that it would finally make it to the refrigerator door. None of them ever did. They never hung up any drawings or any family photos, but they had reassured you over and over that just because your creations weren’t on display didn’t mean they didn’t appreciate them. You kept trying though, eagerly anticipating the day that you would walk into the kitchen and see your hard work on the fridge framed with colourful magnets.

This time you’d drawn the three of you on the beach; you holding a beach ball, playing with dad, while mom was in the water swimming. It had been a while since the family had been anywhere fun. Or rather, it had been a while since you’d been anywhere that was further than a four hundred metre radius away from this house. Mom and dad frequently left for days or weeks at a time, sometimes together, sometimes just one of them, and they always returned with scratches and wounds – or in the rare occasion, broken limbs. You learned not to ask questions since it was guaranteed the answer would be some variation of “you’re too young to understand, sweetheart” or “we’ll tell you when you’re older, okay?”. 

They never got the chance to.

Mom came into the room and you snatched the picture up, holding it against your chest so she couldn’t see. She laughed and reached for a pillow on the bed for you to sit on, promising that she hadn’t seen anything. It was cold what with it being the middle of October, and mom was constantly reminding you that you’d get sick if you sat on the floor without anything underneath you. But you never listened, of course. 

She asked for a peek at the drawing but you shook your head quickly, crumpling the paper as you held it even tighter to your chest. She gave you a kiss on the forehead and conceded. I love you, she said before leaving the room. I love you most, you said back, unaware that this would be the last time you would hear her say those words. 

For a few minutes longer, everything felt normal. Nothing was out of the ordinary. But then the shouts started. Gunshots cracked in the air and fear ran through your body like ice. You immediately ran downstairs in search of your parents, nearly stumbling over the last two steps in your rush. Angry voices bounced off the bullet-riddled walls. Amid the commotion, you briefly caught something about an Alpha and revenge, but you had no time to think what it meant; heavy footsteps stormed through the house and you dashed into the kitchen, hiding in the cupboard underneath the sink. You squeezed your eyes shut and pressed your hand over your mouth to remain quiet, trying to keep hysteria at bay. Your mother yelled and you so desperately wanted to come out, to find her, but she had told you many times that if something bad ever happened, you must hide and stay hidden. You just never thought the day would actually come.

You sat in the cupboard for what felt like hours, but in actuality was probably only minutes. The gruff voices became slightly quieter, replaced by a sloshing, slapping sound before finally receding with their accompanying footsteps. You didn’t dare get out of your hiding place, but the longer you stayed, the more panicked you felt. Where were your parents? Why couldn’t you hear them? Why weren’t they looking for you?

The smell of smoke made you push the door open and peer outside hesitantly, making sure you were safe and that nobody was waiting on the other side to snatch you out. Flames climbed up the walls, steadily swallowing the house. You realized the sloshing sound had been gasoline.

Voices or no voices, you weren’t safe. You abandoned the cupboard, trying to ignore the damage done to the walls and furniture as you ran out of the kitchen. In just a few minutes, everything had been torn apart. Your entire life had been re-written in less time than it took to recite mom and dad a poem.

You called out for your parents, tentatively at first, growing louder the longer they didn’t respond. Had they been taken? Who could you possibly call for help? How were you ever going to find them?

But you didn’t have to. You tripped as you entered the living room and let out a scream when you saw what you nearly fell over. You grabbed your father, shaking him, pleading for him to say something, anything. His eyes were wide open, blank, expressionless. His chest was drenched in blood, as was the floor beneath him. The hysteria crept into your voice and you tumbled back, breathing heavily.

No no no, this couldn’t be happening, he couldn’t be dead. There was no way. He was going to wake up. He had to.

But he didn’t.

You forced yourself to get up, the fire edging closer and closer. You had to get out. You knew this much, but you also had to find your mother. You had to make sure she was safe. You shouted her name, waiting, just waiting for her to pop out from somewhere and yell “surprise!”.

Finally, as the fire grew too hot and uncontrolled, you cast one last look at the house and fled. Then you found her body. She was sprawled across the front steps, her neck at an unnatural angle, too many gunshot wounds in her back to count. You instantly threw up the contents of your stomach and collapsed to your knees, your entire body shaking with sobs. You squeezed your eyes shut then opened them again, shut them, opened them, hoping that this was some horrible, hyper-realistic nightmare.

Who would have done this? Why? What did they want from your parents?

You didn’t want to leave them, but there was a chance that the people who had come from your parents would return.

So you ran. You sprinted from the house into the dense forest surrounding it, not looking back. No time to grab so much as a family photo.

You swore to yourself that whoever did this to your parents would pay. One day, you were going to come for them, and you were going to make damn sure they felt their life ripped away from them the way yours had been. They were going to beg for mercy, but you wouldn’t stop. And then, when you were satisfied they’d felt every ounce of pain possible, you were going to kill them. 

Present day.

You clutch your gun tightly, staying close to the walls of the home. Become one with the walls. I am a goddamn chameleon. I am but a shadow in the night.

All is dark and there’s no other sound apart from the rustle of the bushes out front or the measured beat of your heart. 

So many leads, so many dead ends. Literally dead dead ends. Six years of endless hunting and searching, and yet you have still made little headway. Still have yet to avenge the murder of your parents, much less discover who killed them. All you’ve been met with is whispered rumours of the Alpha, the one you’re looking for, and bodies. The more you search, the more bodies pile up. He knows you’re onto him, and now he’s trying to tie loose ends. Make sure there’s nothing or no one left to lead you to him. You refuse to give up though, maybe one of these days you’ll get lucky and be faster than him. Maybe one day you’ll finally get to somebody useful, somebody with real information, before he has the chance to eliminate them. That’s all you need. One lead. One solid lead. Then you can work from there.

Your parents were hunters of the supernatural, bringers of death who knew no mercy. Of course, you only discovered this many years later. To them, being supernatural meant death. There was no reasoning with them, there were no other options. Sometimes you wonder what they would think of you, the person who doesn’t equate supernatural to abomination. To you, death is not always the answer. They would probably be disappointed. But you’ll never know.

You pad your way to the bedroom in the back of the house, having managed to avoid every creak and whine of the floorboards so far. You’ve memorized the layout of the place after visiting it so many times while the owner was out. You’ve memorized his schedule, when he comes home and when he leaves, where every home phone is located, as well as the security code to the alarm system. It took a while, but if it meant answers, the time was worth it. You can’t afford any mistakes. You’ve managed to get out of trouble before, but that doesn’t make the process enjoyable.

Your proverbial partner in crime Hoseok managed to track down the man you’re on the hunt for tonight. Hoseok is a faerie who fled the Dark Court he belonged to in favour of the human world. He doesn’t age and the conversation where he had to explain why he looked the exact same since finding you in the forest when you were a child had been an interesting one. It was that same day he explained what your parents were. The supernatural make it a habit of knowing those who hunt them. 

You were lucky he took you in at all. He could have left you there in the forest that day, he didn’t owe you a thing, particularly with who your parents were. But he did and you could never in a million years repay him for the kindness. At the age of sixteen, you began planning your mission to avenge your parents’ murder, and at seventeen, you finally told Hoseok. He didn’t approve at first and wanted you to live a safe, as normal as possible life, but after seeing how determined you were (and that you wouldn’t listen to him), he decided he would support you. So the training and the searching began.

Hoseok does most of the techy stuff and you do most of the butt-kicking stuff. It would make more sense if you stayed back while he went out, since you’re far more vulnerable as a human, but you refused. This is personal, you have to be out there, you have to look in the eyes of the people who helped kill your parents and make them regret what they did. Hoseok joins every now and then, depending on the level of danger. He also goes on many trips, either in search of supplies or any possible leads. Most leads are far and few between, but after his last four week trip a couple months ago, he returned with information about the location of one of the Alpha’s men. The one you’re finally confronting tonight.

His name is Ilmari, but he now goes by Blake Herring in the human world. Luckily enough, it is a two hour road trip to where he is located. Hoseok laughed (humourlessly) when he told you this. He’s been around the world so many times when a lead has been located nearby the entire time. Hoseok hadn’t been able to find out what the man’s abilities are, so you’ve pretty much got your neck on the line and all of this will have been for nothing if you learn no new information or end up dead.

You push the door open silently and raise the gun higher. Your nerves are so tightly strung, just begging for something to happen.

The bed is empty. Suddenly your legs are kicked out from underneath you and you go sprawling. The man runs and you fire off two shots. The first misses, the second clips his leg. He lets out a curse and you scramble after him. Rounding a corner, he sprints for the door, but you fire round after round and he abandons the door, stumbling up the stairs instead. What an idiot. You know there’s no way out from upstairs. Unless he plans on jumping out a window. You’re comforted by the fact that he can’t make too much noise and have any neighbours asking questions, thus compromising his safety from the Alpha. If this weren’t the case, then he would be tearing down furniture and screaming for help, making this much more difficult.

You bound up the stairs in twos, following close behind. He’s limp-running into the upstairs bedroom when you tackle him to the ground, pressing a hand over his mouth and the gun to his temple.

“Listen here, buddy, if you don’t stop fighting, you’re going to have a real bad time,” you say. “As much as I want to kill you, there’s something else I need from you first. So, if you’d like to feel iron bullets lodged in your kneecaps, then please, go on. I have all night.” You’re not sure if he’s one of the many creatures who reacts to iron, however you are sure that getting shot hurts like a bitch. Especially if you have to stick around to actually feel the pain of being shot and don’t, you know, die.

He stills underneath you and you hesitantly lift your hand from his mouth. You scoot off him, the gun unwavering in your hand. “Get up.”

He stands, slowly, hands behind his head. Then the air in your lungs disappears and you’re choking, gasping for breath, but unable to. You’re suffocating – he’s suffocating you with his abilities. You’ve trained for this, you know what to do, but all you can think is air, I need air

Black spots begin clouding your vision, there’s little time left. You fire a shot and oxygen rushes back as he collapses to his knees, gripping his leg. You were aiming a bit higher, but it doesn’t matter. You grab the lamp from the dresser by the stairs and smash it over his head, knocking him out like a light.

“So we have a runner,“ Hoseok says as you drag the man out of the truck, into the church. The two of you live in the bunker below, but you remain above, in the heart of the church. Originally, the ideal plan was for Ilmari to cooperate, tell you everything you wanted to know, and you’d be on your way, no force necessary. However nothing ever really goes according to plan, so you need backup on this one. Being human puts a limit on your capabilities, but Hoseok being Dark fey means he could do things you can’t. He can use his abilities to persuade other supernatural beings to cooperate much faster. You know he doesn’t enjoy it, but sometimes special circumstances arise and there’s no other choice. This is a special circumstance.

"I think anyone with a brain would run if they knew they were in danger,” you say with a grunt, dropping the man onto a pew. The two of you quickly wrap iron chains around him, strapping him down so he can’t make an escape. The sizzling of flesh is immediate and you suppress a satisfied smile. The smell initially made you gag, but you quickly got used to it. You couldn’t let something like this interfere with your mission, so you learned to get over any squeamishness fast. Whenever you’re in Time To Kick Ass mode (which is almost 24/7, in all honesty), you switch off. You have to. You can’t be swayed by emotion, you can’t be pitying. You had to harden up, or abandon any hopes that you’d be able to follow through with this mission.

Hoseok plasters a large strip of tape over his mouth and hovers a small packet of smelling salts underneath his nose. The man jolts awake and curls away from the smell. He attempts to struggle, then stops – the more he moves, the more he presses against the iron chains smothering him.

You lean against the back on the pew in front of him, tilting your head to the side as you watch him. “So, Ilmari, how about we try this again? This will be way easier for everyone if you just stop resisting and tell us what we want to hear. How’s that?”

He looks at you, mouth moving behind the tape. You tear it off and he flinches, immediately spitting a “fuck you” in your direction. This earns him a slap across the face. Hoseok gives you a look and you shrug. You’re not in the mood to be patient today.

“Where’s the Alpha?” Hoseok demands.

The man’s eyes widen and he looks you over. “It’s you, isn’t it? I’ve heard rumours, but I didn’t believe them. You’re the daughter, aren’t you? Of those hunters?”

You roll your eyes. “We’re asking the questions here, buddy. Now, answer my friend’s question. Where is the Alpha? Your old boss?”

He shakes his head quickly. “I don’t know anything. I have no information for you.” The overwhelming feeling of suffocating conquers you and you double over, but the feeling subsides quickly, replaced by the man’s screams. He attempts to back away, but is unable to move in the pew. “Get them off! What are you doing! Get them off me!”

Hoseok looks like he’s barely even exerting himself, but you know that he’s making the man see his greatest nightmares unfold before him. You once asked him to demonstrate his abilities on you, just in case you ever came across any Dark fey, and the experience was one you would never forget. In that moment, you believe what you’re undergoing is real, and the only way to bring it to an end is for Hoseok to stop. 

“If you want it to go away, start talking,” you say breathlessly. “Try that again and your second chances are gone." 

"Okay, okay,” the man says, tears streaming down his face. You look at Hoseok and he stops. The man trembles, recovering from what just happened. He hurries on, sniffling pathetically every now and then. “I haven’t seen the Alpha in years, he paid us then told us all to leave, that we were free from our duties. But a few years ago I started hearing that he was killing us off one by one. Eliminating any evidence, so to speak. He let us think we were safe, maybe to convince his new recruits that they were too, but then he started coming after us so there were no ties left to what happened. Or,” he glances at you hesitantly, “He wanted to make sure you didn’t get to us first.”

“What happened is you killed my parents,” you say, the venom dripping off each word.

“I-I was only abiding by orders–”

“Shut up. Keep going.”

“I ran and hid, I did everything to make sure I couldn’t be found. But if you found me, that means he probably can too. I have no contact with any others who may have survived, I don’t know where they are, but there were whispers that he was looking for you. That he wants to eradicate your family bloodline.”

This piques your interest. You’ve never gotten this far with any of the Alpha’s men you’ve managed to find from that fateful day sixteen years ago. The Alpha had done one hell of a job making sure each of them knew as little as possible.

“Where is he? Why did he kill my parents?”

“I don’t know,” he says, casting a fearful look at Hoseok. “I promise, I would tell you if I knew. I wasn’t among his close guards, I only knew my orders were to kill the hunters. That’s it. We never asked questions." 

You look over at Hoseok, searching for his opinion on whether what the man is saying is the truth or not. Hoseok has been around much longer than you have, what with being a faerie that ages much slower than human beings. He’s seen things, lived in this world longer, and been confronted with many lies in the realm of the Dark fey. Whatever he says goes. You rarely do anything important without his input. 

"I think he’s telling the truth,” he says. “And I’m sure he realizes that if he’s lying, we’ll make sure to find him again and what he experienced a couple minutes ago will feel like child’s play.”

The man stiffens at the threat. “I swear that’s all I know. Please." 

"Alright, we believe you,” you say, beginning to remove the chains with Hoseok’s help. “You’re going to have to find a new place to hide. Don’t bother going back home. Get out of the country, stay off the radar, and don’t ever come back.” He begins thanking you but you cut him off. “I’m not doing this to help you. You murdered my parents, I couldn’t feel a shred of sympathy for you even if I tried. I couldn’t care less if the Alpha found you and killed you tomorrow.”

Hoseok throws the chain to the side and pulls the man up. "Breathe a word about what happened here and we will find you again. We found you once, we can do it once more. Now get out.”

The man doesn’t need to be asked twice. He flees, nearly tripping over his own feet. You don’t bother making sure he’s really gone, nobody in their right mind would stick around unless they had a death wish.

You pick up the chains and the two of you move to the back of the church, going through the door tucked into the corner leading to a large room with a restroom (that hasn’t worked in several years) and home. Hoseok pushes a secret section of the wall in, letting you through, and you both descend the stairs, keying in the passcode at the door at the bottom, finally safe inside the bunker. You rarely see trouble here, the only people who get curious are usually drunk and don’t really make it past the heart of the church. Cleaning up the mess they leave after themselves is another story.

The main area of the bunker is large enough to hold space for a small kitchen, a couch, two bookshelves covering the back walls (that are absolutely overflowing with books, papers, and other odds and ends), as well as a table (also covered in books, papers, yada yada yada). There’s a door by the bookshelves leading to what you call your “practice” room, which is also the room where you go to beat the shit out of things when you’re pissed off. Sometimes you and Hoseok spar, but mostly he coaches you and pushes you harder, breaking your limits, sometimes making you cry if necessary. He knows you inside out, he knows what makes you tick, what motivates you, how to make you relax. He would never deliberately hurt you. What happens in the practice room stays in the practice room. 

As for sleeping quarters, the two of you use the couch and a fold-away cot (with a mattress, of course), swapping depending on who wants what which night. It works. Sure, there’s not a lot of space and it’s not very personalized, but it’s home. For now, anyway. 

When this is all over, maybe you and Hoseok will move into an actual apartment with actual windows and actual beds. You’ll be able to have friends, a job, to tell people your real name. The thought both excites you and makes you incredibly nervous. After living in the shadows for so long, stepping out into the light will take some adjusting. 

You’ll still have to lie, a lot, since there’s no way you can tell people the things you’ve done and seen, but you can tell the truth about some things. The thought of avenging your family and then finally being able to have a real life with Hoseok is what keeps you going, even through the worst of times. Hoseok doesn’t really like thinking too far ahead, but in the times that he has entertained thoughts of the future, he’s said that he might work as a florist and would sign up to as many free classes as possible to learn all sorts of stuff, just because he can. Because then neither of you will be limited and can indulge in any hobby you like. Hell, you could take up pottery if you wanted to or join a taekwondo class. You could go to any store or visit any museum without having to watch your back, in case somebody recognized you and reported back to the Alpha. You’d be free. But for now, you have a mission to see through, and you won’t lose sight of it until the Alpha is dead.

“That was a close call today,” Hoseok says, grabbing an apple from the fruit bowl sitting on the kitchen counter. Most of the food you eat is natural, since as a faerie, Hoseok prefers to eat natural foods and says processed, human foods taste like “burnt plastic” to him. You don’t mind since you’ve eaten like this for the last sixteen years, and you have to remain fit and healthy to be in your best form. 

You walk past him and slip your jacket off, chucking it onto the back of the couch. “I know, but we got the job done anyway.”

"Y/N.” The seriousness in his voice makes you turn to look at him. “What if you hadn’t made it back here? What if he’d managed to kill you?”

“I’m sorry, Hobi. But I’m okay, I’m right here. Nothing bad happened. What’s important is that we got new information.” You’re unable to keep the excitement out of your voice in the last bit. 

Hoseok’s lips are pursed, debating whether or not to drop the subject. He does. “Finally something panned out. Good thing he was a talker and made it easy. Relatively easy.” He chews on his lip. “I think I should see if I can find out anything else. Maybe somebody knows where the Alpha is and we just weren’t looking hard enough. We’re getting close, I can feel it. He’s also out there looking for the same people we are. You never know, maybe he slipped up somewhere and we’ll find something else. Sometimes you have to double back and look again to find something new.”

Your heart sinks and you pout. "It hasn’t been that long since your last trip, though.”

"I know,” he says with a sigh and pulls you into a hug. You know he hates leaving you for so long, especially since he goes radio silent during the trips, but they’re necessary. You know he doesn’t tell you about the trouble he comes across on his trips, no matter how much he assures you that everything was fine and he’s in one piece. He always tries to distract you with the things you got for you, but that nagging worry always remains. Hoseok can hold his own, no doubt, but he’s not indestructible. He’s not immortal.

The two of you discuss this new lead, what to do next, and where he’ll go this trip, then fall asleep on the couch during a lull in the conversation. When you wake up, he’s already preparing supplies and breakfast for you.

Hoseok packs light. And fast. He tells you he’ll miss you at least ten times, hugs you for much longer than usual (you hate that he does this before every trip because it makes you worry more), and then he’s out the door. He goes by foot, as always. He finds it easier to hitch rides than to be tied down to the truck, plus it’s more convenient for you since you won’t be tethered to the church while he’s away.

You watch Hoseok’s figure recede into the trees of the forest behind the church and pray that this trip won’t be as long as the one before. He turns to you one more time and waves before disappearing completely.

Twelve days sans-Hoseok and you’re getting bored. Really, really bored. Worried, too, but you don’t allow yourself to overthink too much. He always returns safe and sound, putting your concerns at rest. But you can’t help it.

The church is quiet without him. Even with the radio switched on, the silence seems to stretch and grow, filling every crack and hollow of the room. You hum, you sing along to familiar songs, you pummel the punching bag in the practice room, but it’s not enough. 

To preoccupy your time, you’ve reread books, brushed up on your self-defense skills, exercised, napped, gone for jogs, and now you’re gardening. 

The garden is unofficially Hoseok’s since he’s always the one tending to it, but you’ve exhausted all your options and need something else to do. You pull out vegetables and fruits, marveling at how ripe and fresh everything looks. It rained the night before, so it’s a bit muddy, but you hardly even notice or care. The change in setting is nice and you enjoy listening to the rustle and whispering of the forest.

When you and Hoseok were looking for shelter all those years ago, you were lucky enough to get help from other supernatural beings you came across. Several angels guided you to the church and a group of dryads helped with the garden. It’s hidden away in the forest near the church, but not close enough to suggest anyone lives in the church. The dryads enchanted the land so that pests and other people steer clear of the area and the seasons (ahem, winter) do not affect the growth of crops, meaning you and Hoseok are able to grow your own food year-round and thus avoid having to leave the safety of the church too often. Of course, you make some trips into town now that you’re not a child anymore and you feel safe doing so after the years of training you’ve had. Hoseok worries, but he’s learned to trust that you can handle yourself and that as an adult, you’re capable of making your own decisions (and dealing with their consequences).

You hear a twig crack and freeze, whipping your head around to the source of the noise. You draw out your gun and aim, your grip steady despite the pounding in your heart. Nothing happens, not for a minute, or two, or three. A twig snaps again from the same direction, and then a squirrel emerges. It remains on the garden’s periphery, as it should, before scampering off. Your entire body relaxes and you’re glad nobody else was around to see your overreaction. 

After a couple hours, you take a break and have some lunch before continuing on. You’ve collected three large tubs of potatoes, cabbage, berries, corn, and are pulling out carrots when you hear the voice. You pause. The voice doesn’t come again for another thirty seconds or so and you’re beginning to think that you must have overreacted again, mishearing a crow’s caw, when it sounds again.

“Hello?” Definitely not a crow.

You drop the carrots and slip the gun out from your back pocket, quickly pressing yourself against a nearby tree.

“Is anybody out there?”

Your eyes sweep across the forest, between the trees, searching for the source. It keeps calling, then waiting for an answer before calling out again. You should run and hide, but instead you follow. You remain as quiet as possible, moving carefully and slowly. 

Finally, you locate him. A young man. You peer out from behind the tree and watch as he walks, looking around. His expression is helpless and judging by the amount of dried mud on his pants and shoes, he’s been wandering around the forest for a while. He must not have seen you, which means you’re safe. You observe him, memorizing his features out of habit, and maybe also a little bit out of curiosity. He looks around your age, give or take a couple years, not too tall, with slightly wavy, brown hair matted to his forehead from sweat.

Hello?” He calls out again, this time louder. A hint of desperation creeps into his voice. He’s lost. You can’t know for sure and this could all be a trap, but what if it isn’t? There’s nobody else who could help and there’s no way he would be able to get reception on his phone to call anyone. You weigh your options and you know you should turn around. Hoseok would tell you to turn around. It’s the safest thing to do. For you. Forget what you saw and leave. He’ll find his own way home eventually. Hopefully.

You go against your better instinct. Instead, you conceal your gun again, wipe your hands on your pants, and step out from behind the tree.

“Hey, are you lost?”

 He jumps, a look of sheer relief crossing his face when he spots you. You try your best to not notice how beautiful he is up close. Try and fail.

“Holy shit, an actual human being. Yeah, I’ve been wandering through the forest for hours already, I was beginning to lose hope that I’d ever get out or find anyone. You wouldn’t be able to point out the way to get to the road, would you?”

“I can show you the way, if you’d like.”

“That would be amazing, thank you so much.” Gratitude spills from each word and you suppress a smile.

He follows as you navigate out of the forest that you practically know by heart after all these years. You sneak glances over at him every now and then, taking in his luscious mouth, the way he runs his fingers through his hair to get it out of his eyes, the gentle slope of his nose. You look away quickly before he can notice.

“What were you doing out here anyway?” You ask to fill the silence. You’re not quite sure what to say. Small talk has never been your forte since you don’t have to do it often. It’s rare that you make conversation with anyone, so when you do, it always feels strained on your part. 

He gives an awkward laugh. “I, uh, had a bit of an argument with my father. He lives near the forest, so I went out for some air and I guess I wandered a bit too far. What about you? How did I get so lucky that you were around?”

You should have anticipated this question so you say the first thing that comes to mind. “I like the quiet out here so I come to walk every now and then. It’s easy to forget everything for a little while in this quiet. It’s nice.” Not really a lie.

“I can understand that.” He says, kicking the leaves underneath his feet. “Sometimes blasting music isn’t enough and you need to not hear anything." 

You nod and peek over at him again. This time he catches you looking.

The two of you finally reach the edge of the forest and he lets out a sigh of relief as soon as the clearing and road is in sight. The sun is beginning to set, casting the sky in beautiful shades of orange and purple.

He glances at the truck parked behind the church and you can feel the question burning on his tongue, that he doesn’t ask. So you ask for him. "Do you want a ride?”

He quickly shakes his head. “No, no, please don’t worry. You’ve already done so much. I can walk the rest of the distance–”

“Seriously, my truck is right here. It’s totally fine. You’ll be walking for hours before you reach anyone else.” You start towards the truck and after a moment’s hesitation, he follows. The doors whine as they open, yet another sign that it’s time to sell the piece of shit and replace it, but it’s been faithful to you this long and hasn’t completely broken down yet, so until it does, it stays. He climbs into the passenger seat beside you and you rev the engine. “So, where to?”

He purses his lips, regarding you sheepishly. “Nearest payphone is fine. Really. I can get myself home from there.” You’re about to protest but he cuts you off. “I’m already grateful to you for getting me this far and for offering a ride, but I’ll feel embarrassed if you drive me home too.”

You concede and start driving. His stomach grumbles (for which he mutters an apology) and it makes you wonder just how long he was stranded out in the forest. Usually Hoseok has something in the truck to snack on, but since he’s away, it’s empty. You should make it a habit to have a carrot or something lying around just in case. But when would you ever be in a situation like this again? This is the first and probably last time you’ll offer a stranger a ride. Your heart sinks a little at the thought that you won’t see this (beautiful) stranger again. It’s been a while since you’ve interacted with anyone other than Hoseok in a way that didn’t involve threatening their life or demanding information out of them.

“My name is Jimin, by the way,” he says out of nowhere. “Sorry, I thought I should introduce myself considering you kind of just saved my life.”

You laugh quietly. “I didn’t save your life, but you’re very welcome. My name’s Sooyoung.” You say the first name that crosses your mind. It’s not your real name, because no matter how friendly and beautiful a stranger may be, you can’t trust anyone.

“Do you live in town, Sooyoung?”

You hesitate. What do you say? Usually lying comes so easily, but this time you’re tempted to tell the truth. Something about his gentleness and interest makes you feel awful for being so dishonest. But you can’t tell him, you can’t ruin everything you’ve constructed over these years for somebody so fleeting. 

“I do.” You keep your answer succinct, afraid that if you keep going, you might never stop.

“Really? I’m sure I would’ve remembered somebody like you,” he says, a frown crossing his face. The town is small, no doubt, and after a while you could probably learn everyone’s name and face by heart. You curse yourself for lying, you should’ve said you live on the outskirts, but it’s too late to go back now. If anything, you’ve learned he’s a local.

You can’t help yourself from asking, “What’s that supposed to mean?”

“It means you have an unforgettable face,” he says nonchalantly and your heart begins to thud in your ribcage from his words.

“I don’t have much of a social life,” you confess, “So that’s probably why you haven’t seen me around. Maybe I’ll start coming out more and we’ll bump into eachother again.” It’s a false promise and you ignore the way it makes you ache inside. It gets him hopeful though.

“I’ll be looking forward to it.” His stomach rumbles again and you laugh. “Christ almighty, I swear I’m not leaving the house again without packing at least three Nature Valleys with me.”

“What, you planning on getting lost again?” You tease.

“Maybe, if there’s the chance that I get to see you.”  

"Ohmygod, you didn’t.”

He ducks his head, grinning. “Sorry, sorry, I’ll stop. I swear I’m less gross when I’m not starving.” 

“Being stranded in a forest will do that to you.” You lean over him and pop open the glove compartment in front of him. You try to ignore how close he is and maintain your focus on the road. “There might be something in here, if you’re lucky.” Your hand locates a wrapper and you pull it out. A Snickers bar. The only chocolate (and junk food) you eat and pretty much one of the few reasons you ever go into the city. You stock up on the stuff and you swear you get withdrawal symptoms when they’re out. You give the Snickers to Jimin despite his objections and shut the compartment. “It’s not much, but it’ll give you some energy.”

“You’re not you when you’re hungry,” he quips. He opens the wrapper and splits the bar, handing one half over to you. You shake your head.

“Thank you, but it’s all yours. I’m okay.” 

He pops the chocolate in his mouth and lets out a content groan. You take note of the cute noises he makes while chewing. After he’s polished off the rest of the bar, he says, “That was the most satisfying sugar hit of my life. You’re my guardian angel, I swear. Saves me from near death, gives me a ride, then offers me chocolate? I must be the luckiest man on the planet.

“As lucky as someone who got stranded in the forest can be,” you tease.

“Listen, it led me to you in the end, so it was worth it. I’ll have to call my dad up later and thank him for the argument.”

You find yourself enjoying Jimin’s company far more than you should. For a moment, you’re thankful that the drive back to humanity is so far away because it delays the inevitable goodbye for just a bit longer. You ponder over your next question, unsure whether you’re overstepping any boundaries. “Will you and your dad be okay?”

He doesn’t respond at first and the air in the car seems to grow heavier. “Yeah. If anything, now I know my way out of the forest.”

"I’ll make sure to keep looking for silence then. Maybe our paths will cross again.” You meet his gaze and his lips twinge into a smile.

Lights begin to twinkle in the distance, signaling that other life is nearby and Jimin is going to have to leave soon. You tell yourself though that if you just so head into town and spot him, there’s nothing wrong with striking up a conversation. Of course you won’t actively look for him, but if you’re around, there’s no harm in keeping your eyes peeled and hoping you see a familiar face.

You pull into the first gas station on your right, which Jimin affirms does have a payphone. He climbs out of the truck but remains at the door, stalling.

“I guess this it it then,” he says. “I don’t think I can ever thank you enough or repay you for everything today. I didn’t do anything to deserve such kindness from you.”

You tell him it’s nothing. “You needed help, end of story. Thanks for not being a crazy ass murderer, by the way.”

“Right back at you.” His expression is so open and sincere, and you’re glad you didn’t walk away earlier, leaving him stranded in the forest. Sometimes it’s worth taking risks, and this night is proof of that. You ignore the fluttering in your heart, telling yourself it has nothing to do with him, you are most definitely not freaking out over some boy. Your body is probably going into overdrive because of how long you’ve had to have a normal conversation with someone and not fall flat on your face, despite how out of practice you are. 

Jimin searches your eyes, as though trying to convey something to you. Whatever he wants to tell you will remain a mystery because he steps back to leave, his expression spelling out the goodbye he doesn’t say. Jimin is about to shut the door of the truck when he blurts out:

“Can I see you again?” 

You don’t even hesitate. "Yes.”

all-name-is-taken  asked:

I really like how much energy you give back with body language. Even a simple standing pose looks so lively. May you share some tips and tricks? I would like to hear how you learned to use poses/body language this good, cause I really adore your style. Keep up the good work! ^^

Aaaah, well thank you so much ;w; Body language is honestly some of my favourite things to try and bring out in a comic page. And those are some really high compliments! >w< thank you!

A big part of it is to remember that no human being (or animal) (or monster lol) in real life ever “stands still”. A person always stands in a way that reflects their mood, a thought, and their physical condition at that moment, if it doesn’t reflect an action. In the newest page, Sans leans a little to see if the human is out of sight. So in my mind, I imagine he has to look past the trees to see properly, which is why he leans. And then to emphasise the pose, I have him on his toes just to push the pose that little bit extra.

In earlier pages, I think a lot about the character’s personality as well as what they’re currently doing or saying. Sans is very withdrawn, so a lot of his standing poses are quite similar. Sans keeps his cards very close to his chest regarding his real thoughts and feelings, and so his standing poses rarely reflect too much, instead relying on things in the environment to change up what he’s doing. Papyrus is the exact opposite. he is very animated and gestures a lot. And so by extension, his poses are very extreme and show exactly what he thinks and feels.

On top of this, I very often give characters something physical to do or play against, which often just gives me a pose to work with so I don’t need to think too hard. Like when Sans and Papyrus reach their home early in the comic, I have Sans take his shoes off as he’s talking to Papyrus. This gives me things to draw while they talk not only for Sans, but then also for Papyrus who picks up after him.

In the morning, I give Papyrus a cup of coffee because that’s something you’d have in the morning. (I also imagine he enjoys spending the morning on the balcony with his hot drink although I couldn’t show that in the comic) So when he starts talking to Sans, the situation kinda just writes itself with Papyrus suddenly having a cup of coffee in his hands me going “ok… so now how does he pose if he’s holding this?” and making it up from there. Every solution is also a problem, which then also becomes a solution etc etc.

Also as a whole, I pay a lot of attention to other people’s art and how they handle poses and emotions. I have a lot of folders on my mac just for poses. I have several folders for photos of models, but I tend to use them more to check my anatomy.

And then I have a folder for “poses” which consists more of other people’s rough studies, tutorials, sketches and free to use references. I tend to use this one this most, usually for things like hand-poses or if I’m stuck on a technicality and I’m not sure how to push it. The hand is the second more expressive part of the human body after the face. Some sometimes a hand pose can actually lead me to know which expression or pose to give a character!

Then of course I look at how other artists have drawn and poses the characters in question in their art. I look at how they handle their poses, expressions, interactions and reactions to the world around them. I take cues from these, but I don’t copy the poses or use them as “reference”. Because I am drawing the same characters, it feels too much like “copying” to essential redraw an exact pose. However, it can help when I’m stuck on something like “how does Sans’ face work when he’s angry??”

And then of course, I have a lot of professional model sheets and production art that also help me problem solve or try to figure out how to express a certain emotion or feeling.

Body language in art and animation is something I’m just naturally drawn to (no pun intended) And so when I watch anything animated, I pay a lot of attention just instinctively to how a character is standing, responding, or moving in a scene. That thing where people say “can’t you just turn off your brain and enjoy a dumb movie?” like… no…. I can’t… because I am ALWAYS using my brain. In many ways but one of which is the constant taking note of what a character is doing. Even if its just on a “oh that’s nice!” level. I still remember it. So that maybe years later I go “What was that one pose that one character did in that thing I saw 5 years ago? That would be a good pose for this scene!”

Originally posted by dezaki

I build up an internal reference library, and constantly take note of things I watch, read and see online. Usually no more than “I like this!” but that’s usually enough for me to remember it. Even if I never use the pose itself, it helps me better think of how characters react and interact with things. And then the more I see it, the easier it is for me to come up with ideas of my own.

(also. I have a deep unbridled love for actions and scenes in completely ordinary normal “boring” situations. Because those tend to be the hardest poses to pull off because they are things we do every day of our lives, subconciously without us thinking about them. So we recognise much faster when the pose is false, but when the pose is on point, it resonates with us a lot more. And normal posing is one of my personal favourite things)

This is also why something like Revolutionary Girl Utena is my favourite anime. because the shown with a limited budget, had to spend SO MUCH TIME on how they make a character stand or pose because they literally didn’t have enough money to make the characters move a lot. And posing is VITAL in utena, because the entire show has less to do with what people are saying out loud, and instead what they are DOING. Because the show operates on metaphors, visual cues, social cues, body language, and double meanings. For instance.

So in a show where no-one talks straight, everyone talks in double meanings, and you can’t trust what anyone says, body language becomes crucial in understanding people’s real motives, what is happening in a scene, and what is actually being said. It’s a great anime to exercise your observational skills. As well as your ability to interpret meaning from actions and body language, more than just speech and dialogue.

And then there’s the old fall backs. LIFE DRAWING. Which can never ever ever be stressed enough. Human observation. People watching. live action movies and taking note of acting (which is why I like movies from the 70s and 80s so much. The act had a more realistic tone to it, and the humanity shines through a lot better) as well as just simply, old fashioned practice.

Practice of EVERYTHING. Practice drawing. But also practice observing. Practice interpreting. practice analysing. practice remembering. Practice noticing. practice engaging when watching something instead of just passively watching. All these things take practice practice practice.

Originally posted by settei

Anyway. This is a very long reply and maybe a little off topic for this blog ^^; but I hope it could at least help you out and give you somewhere to start if nothing else.

Eyeshadow Part 2

A/N: So here’s part two. Angst kinda happened. IDK if I’m actually any good at writing angst tbh. There will be at least a part three at some point.

Super thanks to everyone who read the first part!! (Part 1 is here or on ao3 here)

(I remembered a read more this time yay!)


When Anxiety walked into his room the note was immediately obvious. It was the lightest thing there except possibly his own pale skin. The bags under his eyes were, today, more from exhaustion than eyeshadow and while the note intrigued him he didn’t have the energy to investigate it then. He fell into his bed which was, as usual, more pillow-mountain than bed; and slept.

He didn’t wake until well into the day which was not unusual but was nerve wracking for Roman. Had he found it? Did he know who it was from? Did he like it? Would he be wearing it today?

The last thought set butterflies swirling in his stomach but he didn’t know why.

He decided after a while that all this worry was not very princely at all and went in search of a snack instead.

Keep reading

notes to the types, from an INTJ.

DISCLAIMER: All of this is subjective, obviously.

ISTP:
-Stop pretending you’re an aloof ninja. You’re just a nerd. Calm down.
-Okay I know you want to learn how to throw and spin knives and that is a-okay, just don’t point it at me, seriously.
-STOP PRETENDING YOU DON’T HAVE EMOTIONS. What’s up with you and not wanting to admit that you feel things? It’s not a bad thing!
-Such nerds. succchhh nerds.
-Remember to do that thing that’s due tomorrow NOW, bc I know you’ll do it in 2 minutes before class tomorrow.
-keep track of time. Why are you so bad at this?
-Yes, what you said offended that person. Yes, they will probably accept your apology.
-You make so many noises
-Maybe make more facial expressions? You look like you want to kill someone when you’re not doing anything. But I can totally relate. Others might not get it though, so try to be a bit more expressive.

INTJ:
-Stop being an asshole.
-literally no one asked you to make everything a metaphor for suffering.
-you are NOT the nicest person I know. Don’t delude yourself. You may be understanding, but niceness is usually measured by external things, like compassion and emotion. Which you basically NEVER express.
-why do u make so many puns dear god
-??? You speak perfectly. I don’t know how. #NotAllINTJs
-yes, you’re charismatic, but it’s in an awkward way. You aren’t “the suave master”, you’re just the cute nerd. Got it?
-next time you repeatedly ask me the same question I will throw you off a cliff

ISTJ:
-how do you do so many things? I don’t have that energy.
-also, stop reading Wattpad instead of studying. You know that your grades matter more to you.
-don’t be afraid to speak your opinion just because other people won’t accept it or because you think it may disrupt the balance. Most things need to be verbalized.
-I DON’T GET WHY PEOPLE ARE SO IGNORANT EITHER. What’s up with that????
-sometimes perspectives need to shift and things just arent a useful supply of information anymore.
-get some sleep.
-grades don’t mean everything just because you were told they always mean everything.
-my cute timid sunflowers 💕

INFP:
-you’ll never be happy if you don’t pursue something you love. It doesn’t matter if someone doesn’t want you to. You matter most, in your world. Okay?
-worry about yourself more
-if you’re so worried about being organized, organize yourself. I’ll help you. It only takes 2 weeks to develop a habit, after all.
-DO. NOT. DATE. MANIPULATIVE. PEOPLE! Why??? Bbg! You always love the underdogs, but sometimes the underdogs are literal psychopaths! That is not healthy! You don’t need that kind of manipulation. Use some reasoning!
-you guys have so much creativity. Express it! People love that shit, trust me. I know I do.
-go on adventures if you want to! Might as well, yeah? It’s not going to HURT if you take a hike and draw some trees. Philosophize. It’s what makes self-realization.

ENFP:
-how. So much. So much energy. Why do you always want to go to the mall or to a party?
-no, i dont want to go anywhere, and no, it’s not because I’m being lazy.
-we should build a shed. You can keep your various stray animals there.
-why. Why are you so dependent. You don’t need to talk to your boyfriend for every minute of everyday AND update him on your status every hour.
-stop making so many “fake” friends. Just because someone compliments your shirt doesn’t mean they aren’t going to be a terrible person.
-it’s just project-project-project with you, isnt it? You don’t even finish 1/3rd of them. …i’ll still help you, though.

INFJ:
-sweetheart
-you don’t need to base your being on making others feel better. Or on making yourself fit into a ridiculously ideal image. People like you imagine just don’t exist.
-pretentious w books
-many pretentious books
-also a weeb. It goes hand-in-hand.
-find a good outlet to express your emotions.
-don’t look at the floor all the time, just because you don’t want to meet anyone’s gaze or because you want to think. Look ahead. Show some confidence, darling. You could take the world if you wanted to.
-if you don’t want life to be meaningless, find your meaning. Pursue it.

ESTJ:
-you would be cool, if you didnt have such a bias towards things you don’t even know you HAVE A BIAS towards. Yes, that’s biased. Oooh, how do I know? Let me explain.
-what society taught you isnt always what you will believe. You need to stop deluding yourself.
-stop giving TEXT-BOOK DEFINITIONS
-i gotta admit your logic is pretty solid but your BIASES, oh god the biases.
-why do u have a literal army of followers

ENFJ: *sorry! I hate the two ENFJs i know. They’re underdeveloped.*
-you make me cry. Feelings aren’t to be used in logic-fueled arguments. Don’t think they are facts.
-i dont like you for reasons. Those reasons not being “oh did i offend you”, like??? Who you trying to fight here, me, or your suppressed emotional biases??
-the amount of people who like you doesn’t equal your value! What were you thinking?
-speaking of thinking: you should THINK a lot more! Please? Think something through before you ask me an emotionally-barbed question.

INTP:
-my little fluster nerds
-always developing new things
-I always happen to get into a love-hate relationship with you; because I regard you with fascination and you feel like you’re being studied (you are, btw), and you hate feeling like you’re under a microscope. It’s okay, ill keep teasing you. Your reactions are so adorable!
-inf Fe is so cute. The responses to the stimuli. Ugh. I wanna hug you and tell you how adorable. How puppy.
-nah, nah! I don’t hate you. I’d never hate you. You’re just so INTERESTING. Tell me all about your conspiracy theories! You’re making a language? Ooh, can you teach it to me? That’s so cool! Let me contribute my ideas, too!
-YES, let’s build a sculpture. YES, let’s make english more efficient. Have you heard of that meme?-yeah, that one!
-every conversation is like a make-a-story with the contributions from both sides.
-TEAM CRINGE when people make logical fallacies

ENTP:
-high quality memers.
-most of the people I’ve had crushes on are ENTPs, un-miraculously.
-i could listen to you make up sarcastic stories for hours and never get bored
-TEAM USELESS FACTS that no one will ever use but you still have because of Wikipedia searches.
-you are hilarious. And also, very cute when flustered. Less-so than INTP, but that’s only because they only ever wanna talk about history or chemistry or their poison of choice. You will actually talk to people.
-you all have a distinct walk. It’s so odd. It’s a pattern I’m seeing, though.

Darkside of Dimensions Review

Since I’ve seen it twice now and gotten a few asks, I figured I’d share my thoughts on the new Yu-Gi-Oh! movie with ye.

Spoiler-free summary: I really enjoyed this movie, especially Kaiba’s and Yugi’s characterisation, but the duels dragged. The antagonist was an interesting person but an uninteresting duelist so the big duels against him were repetitive and lacking flair. The animation was mostly gorgeous but did suffer from “eh that character is in the background in this shot, it’s fine if they’re just a misshapen blob” syndrome. The plot made as much sense as YGO ever does: it’s supposed to be in manga canon but there are still inconsistencies and the plot could have used more structure. It’s definitely only welcoming to people who already like YGO, I can’t imagine getting much out of it if you’re not a YGO fan! But if you are, it’s excellent fun!

Now for details!

Keep reading

Masquerade 2.1: The Birth of Red Mask

Nothing changes people more than other people. 

These 2.somethings will consist of little drabbles related to the characters in Masquerade II. (Mostly, Red Mask, because he is a complex character and there is still a lot to tell about his story, but the other characters will probably get their own drabbles eventually too ^_^)

If you haven’t already, please read Masquerade II first !!

Summary: Join Red Mask in this flashback to find out what exactly happened in his past that led him to become the very alluring man we had grown to love so dearly. 

Park Jimin ft. other characters

High school au

Some fluff, some smut, a bit of comedy, a bit of angst

A/N: I made this drabble in first person so hopefully it’s not a bit weird. It’ll be told from Jimin’s POV because I wanted you all to get a little bit deeper inside his head and hear his hopefully somewhat relatable inner monologues, so I decided to stray from my usual POV style. Please read it as if you were listening to Jimin telling you this story! Enjoy! ^_^

Originally posted by 9taefox

            I wasn’t always Red Mask.

           Contrary to what I made everyone believe, I wasn’t always this charming, good looking, attractive, sexy, incredibly skilled –

           “PARK JIMIN, please get on with your flashback!”

           You get the gist.

           I wasn’t always the person that you’ve all met. In fact, I was pretty much different. I was naive and gullible. Unconfident and timid.

           Back in my younger days, I didn’t think much about love. Love and relationships, to me, were just some sort of rite of passage. Everybody would get love. Everybody that was older than me was in a relationship. And one day soon, it was going to be my turn.

           Love to me back then was probably what most children envisioned. The passion, the romance, the butterflies, the awkward moments that end up being romantic and cute anyway. The perfect girl was someone whose hair billowed in nonexistent wind when she walked into the room, and she would flash you a smile that would stop your world for a few seconds. And when your eyes locked, you both would know that you two were destined for each other.

           Love to me seemed so simple.

           Once two people liked each other, that was that. Happily ever after!

           So I fell in “love” constantly. I use quotation marks because who, at such a young age, could truly say they were in love with someone they hardly knew? Someone they fantasized about; someone they saw through a beauty filter; someone who they thought was perfect.

           I had many, many crushes. And while I was always a proponent of nice guys being the best choice, it never turned out that way.

           I was just average in all fields. I didn’t stand out particularly. I was decent looking, but not enough to turn heads. I still possessed some of my baby fat and I later found that that made me look more childish than attractive to others. While all the girls were sweet and friendly to me, I soon realized it was because I was harmless to them.

           They didn’t even consider me an option.

           I was always, always friend-zoned.

           But I didn’t give up. No, I just stepped up my game. I found things I was good at– dancing, drawing, singing– and I tried to use that to my advantage.

           You could say Red Mask was born from the culmination of rejections and excuses that I was given throughout my years. Every time I heard “I’m sorry I don’t think of you like that” or an “Oh you’re a great friend Jimin, but I don’t have feelings for you” or my favorite one, “Oh no. I really like your friend…does he know that you like me? Can you put in a good word for me?”, I began losing my ideals and beliefs about love. That foolish yet elusive feeling.

           I became frustrated. What was I lacking? What was not good enough about me? People who I considered less talented and less good looking than me were getting girlfriends, why was I asking all the wrong ones out? Why wouldn’t anyone give me a chance??

           But then in high school, someone finally did.


           Let’s call her Temptress.

           Because she was seduction personified. She was one of the girls that bloomed early and filled in her uniform well. She walked with dignified confidence, with her large chest out and a bright smile. She knew that the boys went crazy when she smoothed her fingers through her hair, and she would lock eyes with you if you were staring, just to fluster you. Even the girls befriended her out of envy.

           She was the alpha female of my class.

           And like most of the guys in the school, I immediately fell for her.

           I gave her homework when and if she forgot it, which was often. I let her copy off my tests just so she would flash me one of her smiles and nudge me while saying, “Thanks, stud!”. I literally melted into my seat whenever she called me that.

           Eventually, I confessed that I liked her, expecting to get rejected of course, but I just couldn’t hold my feelings in anymore.


           "I like you!“ I yelled as I handed her a bouquet of roses.

           She smiled sweetly and took the flowers out of my grip. I perked up expectantly.

           "Jimin.” she called as she cupped my chin with one hand so I could look up at her.

           I gulped. “Yes?”

           "Have you ever been with a girl?“

           I, of course, being the honest, innocent kid I was, shook my head. "Never.”

           "So you’ve never…kissed anyone before?“

           She traced my lips with her delicate fingers and my heart was racing faster than an ambulance at this point. No girl had ever been this close to me, much less touched my face. It was almost always a light smack on the shoulder as a sign of gratitude or a reflex if they were laughing at something funny.

           "N-n-no.” I stammered foolishly and then mentally kicked myself for being so uncool.

           "Aww…“ she pouted. "Poor Jiminnie.”

           She leaned closer to my face, and I can honestly remember my eyes bulging out of its sockets. I wasn’t prepared. Yes, I had fantasized kissing girls more often than I’d like to admit, and in middle school, I embarrassingly tried teaching myself by watching videos and kissing pillows, but obviously those never prepared me for the real life event.

           I panicked as ten thousand plans and questions ran through my mind.

           Should I stick my lips out? Did she want tongue? What the hell do I even do with my tongue when it’s in there? (Videos don’t really show us what’s happening in there, you know, for aesthetic purposes.)

           Oh my goodness, did I brush my teeth? What did I eat for lunch? Oh no, do I have bad breath? What if she hates it after this? What if I’m TERRIBLE? How should I move my lips? Is it slow? Fast? What is slow or fast? Should I just run? What if she’s not even kissing me and I’m freaking myself out? Oh wait, I should close my eyes. Right, that’s step one.

           So I shut my eyes tightly and pursed my lips out.

           And she chuckled.

           I felt my cheeks warm up immediately. Well, chuckling was definitely not what I expected to happen in this situation. Did I screw up already?

           "You’re so cute, Park Jimin.“

           The Temptress called me CUTE. I was literally soaring, having an out of body experience.

           "Relax and follow me.” she whispered.

           Surprisingly, she didn’t back away. She simply traced my lips again to relax me and I felt my knees buckle with the sensation. Suddenly, I felt her soft lips against mine, and I pushed forward eagerly. She pulled back and laughed.

           "I told you to follow me.“ she repeated. "I’ll show you how to kiss.”

           My heart was beating rapidly. The most popular and gorgeous girl at my school just KISSED me and she’s KISSING ME AGAIN. She leaned back in and this time, I closed my eyes slowly, and took in the full feeling of her lips.

           It was steady at first. Like what little kids do to each other because they were mimicking their parents. Lip to lip, we stood there for a few seconds not moving, but despite the lack of action, I still felt my entire being tingling. Then without warning, she parted my lips with hers and slipped her lips into the space between easily. She grabbed arms and pulled our bodies flush together. I literally felt like I was on fire.

           The kiss was a bit…wetter…than I had imagined it to be. And there were no big fireworks or angels singing or anything, but damn did it feel good, especially with her breasts squishing into my chest.

           I was a hormonal teenager (but I guess that much hasn’t changed about me) and I felt my male instincts being enflamed. I followed her lead clumsily. Our teeth clashed together a lot because I really had no idea about the spatial awareness between our lips, or anything for that matter. I was just so enthused about being kissed by my crush that all I could think about was keeping my lips on hers forever. Kindly, she didn’t scold me or make fun of my lack of skill. She just pulled back a bit, adjusting herself, and kept on kissing me until I found the proper rhythm.

           Every time I made a mistake, I would apologize, but she would hear none of it and just grab my face to go back at it again. Eventually, I felt comfortable enough to grab her waist, and as if I had passed the first round boss, she gave me a reward that caused my knees to buckle immediately. Her tongue snaked into my mouth and slid against mine.

           OH. That’s what it did.

           "Oh Jimin.“ she cracked up as I literally gasped for air and stumbled back. I had lost all ability to breathe with the new sensation. Frankly, everything about the moment was overwhelming.

           Here was a beautiful girl kissing me…a lot. And not to mention that I had had the biggest crush on her for a year now. I had my first kiss and my first French kiss on the same day with the hottest girl I had ever seen.

           Talk about saving my luck.

           "Breathe Jimin. You did good.” she smiled and patted my back. “Would you like to learn more things from me?”

           My eyes widened. Was that her way of saying yes? Who was I to turn that offer down?

           "Yes, please.“ I squeaked out breathlessly.

           "Perfect.” She kissed me deeply and I swear I almost fainted on the spot. “I’ll meet you here, same time, tomorrow?”


           Obviously, I showed up bright-eyed and eager to learn the very next day. Maybe a little too eager because I showed up an hour early.

           But anyway, for an entire two weeks, we made out constantly after school. Each day, I learned new techniques by following her lead. And soon, I was pulling her moves out on her and she would become more aggressive. Until one day, on our third week of us being girlfriend and boyfriend, she invited me over her house.

           Boy, I was REALLY not prepared for what she had in mind.

           Shakily, I rang her doorbell, holding my books to my chest tightly. When the door swung open, she welcomed me wearing a thin, satin robe that left nothing to the imagination. My grip slackened and my books scattered onto the ground as I gulped. Immediately, my hands flew in front of my face to cover my eyes.

           "Wh-wha– I’m sorry! I shouldn’t have come so early before you got to change!“ I panicked.

           Temptress chuckled and pried my hands away from my face. My eyes respectfully stared above her head, not wanting to gawk at her clearly exposed body. I had never seen a naked girl in real life before. Sure, there were magazines and videos…but it was like watching a movie or reading a book. But this…this was beyond anything I had imagined, my body was hyperaware of all her curves and I found myself wondering how soft women actually felt.

           I shook my head and turned around, embarrassed as she bent down to pick up my books. Her cleavage was deep and the sides of her breasts were peeking out from the thin fabric.

           "You’re so cute Jimin.” she giggled. “Come in. I’ve been waiting for you like this.”

           I stepped inside backwards, still not wanting to rake my eyes over her body, in fear that I would do something she didn’t like.

           "I-I thought we were just going to do homework and watch TV together.“ I stumbled a little.  

           "No Jimin.” she chuckled as she grabbed my shoulders to turn me around. “When a girl invites you over after making out with you several times, they most likely mean they want to have sex with you.”

           "S-S-SEX?“

           "Yes. Please tell me you’ve at least HEARD of sex, my innocent little nugget.” she squeezed my cheeks.

           "Of course I have…I just…well… I thought we’d at least…you know love each other before thinking about that.“

           "Oh Jimin.” she shook her head and threw off her satin robe boldly. “So are you saying you don’t want to have sex with me?”

           I felt my cock twitch as my eyes were now fully allowed to peruse her body. Nothing compared to seeing a real, live, lingerie-clad female in front of me.

           "Can I?“ I reached my hand out towards her breasts curiously.

           "Please.” She took my hands and put both of them on each boob.

           "Oh my gosh.“ I gasped as I just cupped them awkwardly; my hand a little stiff, like they would pop if I pressed too hard. "Now what do I do?”

           "Massage them Jimin.“

           "Um…okay…” I moved my hands in small circles.

           "Jimin, they’re not going to break, massage hard.“ she guided my hands. "Make me feel good.”

           "O-o-okay…“

           I was sure my entire face and neck was red. Was it out of embarrassment? Out of excitement? I couldn’t exactly remember the emotion that overwhelmed me at that point. But regardless, I had never seen, much less touched a real breast before and there I was, massaging two for the first time. I hadn’t even gotten this far in my research on women.

           "Come here, Jimin.” she whispered, tilting my chin up so she could swipe her tongue across my lip.

           I moaned as her lips traveled down to my neck, as it usually did when our make out sessions escalated passionately. As a reaction, my hands worked her breast hard. My thumb accidentally swiped across her nipple through the see-through lacy fabric and I felt myself harden when she breathed desperately into my neck. Enlightened, I repeated the motion and found that it had her react in the best way. She nipped at my neck and brought her hips closer to my erection. So mustering my courage, I began drawing small circles around her nipples gently. She began grinding into me, her voice breathy and needy.

           "Come with me.“ she grabbed my hand and led me to her bedroom. "Get on the bed.”

           I nodded meekly. I was unprepared, but there was no way I was going to break this series of events. She wanted me. She wanted to have sex with me. Something I had only dreamt about. Something I thought I wouldn’t get to experience until much, much later in life.

           I lay on the bed and watched her shut her door softly. She had a supple ass, round and perky, and her legs were fairly toned. If I remember correctly, she was an athlete of sorts. My thoughts stopped short when I watched her hands come up behind her to unclip her bra. My mouth immediately became dry and there was a fire of need brewing in my lower region. My pants suddenly felt too restricting.

           "Would you like to taste?“ she smirked, probably seeing the way I was gawking at her like a starving child.

           All I could do was nod and she climbed over me. My eyes were wide with awe as she lowered her breasts in front of my face. What was I supposed to do?

           "Have a taste.” she urged.

           "Um…“ I looked around nervously. "Is like…milk going to come out or something?”

           She threw her head back and laughed. I felt myself press my body further into her bed, ashamed.

           "No, Jimin.“ she looked down at me amused. "But it’s going to make me feel really good.”

           "Um so…like…“ I nervously stuck my tongue out and licked her nipple.

           Her body reacted almost instantaneously. She sighed and her elbows buckled a little. I felt empowered so I did the same thing.

           "Suck on it, please.” she pleaded and I covered as much of her breast with my mouth. “The other hand, play with my other one.”

           I followed her instructions obediently, and watched in surprise as those simple actions had her whispering my name and rolling her hips into mine. What was this magic?

           "I’m so wet for you Jimin.“ she hummed.

           I raised an eyebrow. Wet? Did that mean I was using too much saliva on her boobs? But it didn’t sound like a bad thing.

           As if seeing my confusion, she chuckled and pulled herself out of my mouth.

           "I’m wet for you down there.” she explained.

           Oh.

           I gulped as she tugged her panties down and rolled over on her back beside me.

           "Would you like to feel?“

           I nodded, my words still failing me.

           "Give me your hand.” I did so, and she guided my fingers lower and lower…until I felt something sticky and warm. I flinched a little. What the heck was that?

           "That’s how good you made me feel.“ she smiled. "I’ll show you how to make me scream your name and beg for more.”

           I blinked. Those words flustered me, but something inside me really wanted to hear her screaming my name and begging for me, so I moved down so I could see her entrance clearly. It wasn’t as attractive as I thought it’d be. A valley of pink folds lay in front of my fingers, and I had no idea what to do about them.

           She still held my hand, guiding my thumb over a certain part of herself and she gently had me rub it. She winced and moaned, throwing her head back. I panicked, thinking that I was hurting her, but she gripped my wrist to continue. Worriedly and carefully, I continued as she writhed under my touch.

           "Put a finger inside me.“ she instructed.

           I furrowed my brows. "Where…uh… ”

           She smiled and grabbed my index finger, pushing it into one of her holes as I spazzed out at the tightness. Something was clenching around my finger and I was afraid to go any further inside. Just how far did this go? It was a weird feeling. My finger felt like they had just dipped themselves in a narrow jar of thinned out honey.

           But she shoved my finger inside and cried out. My cheeks were flushed because as scared as I was that she was in pain, her noises were turning me on. My boxers were soaked already just from how she sounded and looked. She hadn’t even touched me yet. I shivered at the thought.

           "Push in and out.“ She panted, and I began moving my finger in and out of her hole, mesmerized by the way my finger disappeared and reappeared; by the way she clutched the sheets and bucked her hips up at the command of my index finger. "Add another.”

           "But–“ I protested. There was no way another finger would fit.

           "Do it…please.” she begged.

           Did she like pain? I pushed both my index and middle finger inside her and found her stretching accordingly to the size, much to my surprise. She yelped loudly.

           "Oh my god, Jimin.“

           I decided that I very much loved hearing that phrase, in that manner, in that tone. I smirked and began pushing in and out of her with my finger.

           "Jimin…” she heaved. “Remember that place where you rubbed your thumb before?”

           I nodded as I concentrated on my fingers staying in the proper hole, maintaining the proper rhythm.

           "I need your tongue there.“

           I looked at her in disbelief. She wanted my tongue…where?

           "My tongue?”

           "Yes, taste me. Please.“

           My ears warmed at her request, but I couldn’t refuse. I licked my lips nervously. Was it edible? Would I die? Would I gag? Would she taste okay? I flicked my tongue out and pretended like I was licking ice cream; my fingers still continuing their motion.

           "Mmm…” I hummed. She didn’t taste bad at all. It was soft. It kind of felt like a small version of her lips. Her hips began moving wildly as my tongue worked its way again.

           "Oh my gosh. Yes. Like that.“ she moaned and it ignited my confidence. My body took over, wanting to taste every inch of her nether region, wanting to see how deep my fingers went. Suddenly, I felt myself being ripped from the steady motion, only to have her tongue enter my mouth. The thought of her tasting herself was a bit nauseating, but I shoved that thought away when I felt her unzipping my pants.

           "Wh-wha–” I was flustered and climbed off the bed nervously.

           "I need to return the favor.“ she grinned as she approached me, and pulled down my pants, boxers and all, in one motion.

           I covered my cock timidly. I felt so exposed. I was worried about what she thought of my body.

           "Hands off.” she swatted them away as she knelt down, and stared at me hungrily.

           Was that a good or bad thing?

           Then she opened her mouth and dipped her head down my entire length. I stumbled backwards slightly, but her grip on my hip steadied me. My eyes rolled back at the wave of pleasure that had just coursed through my body.

           "Oh…oh my…“ I moaned as she bobbed her head back and forth.

           I looked down and felt like I was about to faint at the sight. For some reason, it was extremely hott. She was on her knees in front of me, humming happily as she pleasured me expertly. And to top it off, this wasn’t a dream. It was reality. She was sucking me off and enjoying it. And when she added her tongue to the mix, my hand instinctively grabbed her head and slammed myself deeper into her throat. Then I realized what I was doing.

           "I’m so sor–”

           "Do it again.“ she looked up at me in pure delight. "I liked it.”

           She covered my length again and I bucked into her, gripping her hair tightly to keep my sanity. I needed more. I wanted more. This felt so good, it was indescribable. I was addicted. But just when I thought it was already wonderful enough, she pulled away and stated something that had me leaking shamefully.

           "I need you inside me.“

           When I agreed with her using a subtle nod, she handed me a condom wrapper, "Here. I’m not planning to get pregnant anytime soon, so I always have some protection on me.”

           I nodded understandably and fumbled to open it with much difficulty. I must’ve looked extremely foolish because she gently ripped it open for me. With my hands shaking, I took the rubber and tried to line it with the tip of my cock, but it kept missing. I was growing anxious by the second.

           "Relax.“ she guided my hands and I was able to roll it down easily.

           I took a deep breath. I still couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that this was all happening.

           "Since it’s your first time, how about I top for now?”

           "Top what?“ I tilted my head inquisitively.

           She looked at me amused. "Lay on the bed, Jimin.”

           I got back into the sea of blankets, my heart racing incredibly fast. I was dazed and beyond myself. I wanted the pleasure back, the high that I was climbing to a few minutes ago with her mouth around my dick. I felt the bed dip a few seconds later and she soon straddled me. Her warmth was right above my cock and my breathing became labored as she pushed herself down. I groaned and grabbed her thighs tightly. What was this feeling of unrivaled pleasure and electricity? My blood rushed downwards and I was sweating profusely. This had to be illegal.

           But I was wrong.

           When she started riding me, first slowly then roughly, THAT was illegal. Embarrassingly though, I finished quickly, releasing myself before she even built up to her climax. But she didn’t press further; she slid off of me with a satisfied smile.

           "It happens during your first time. Don’t worry.“ she cuddled beside me after I had thrown the condom out and plopped onto the bed. I was extremely sleepy and exhausted for some reason. I hadn’t even done much, but it felt like I had worked out intensely. "We’ll be doing this a lot more often and you’ll be great.”

           She whispered into my ear as I was lulled into sleep.


           And she was true to her word. Every time we met up, it would end up with our bodies tangled in her bed, sweaty and panting. She taught me a lot, and I learned a lot about women and my own body from our sessions. We hardly saw each other in school, but knowing that we had a set time to meet up afterwards, made it all better. I mean, girlfriends and boyfriends didn’t HAVE to be attached to each other all day. Although, I did really want to walk to class holding her hand, flaunting that I, Park Jimin, was dating the Temptress.

           But I soon found that I had been deluding myself all along.

           I decided to search for her during lunch time one day. I had seen her walk out with one of the popular guys so I followed her, worried that he would ask her out or something like that. I lost their track, so I wandered around. They were heading towards the bleachers for some reason so I perused the area. I was about to give up when I heard a very familiar moan coming from underneath the bleachers.

           Nervously, I journeyed there and found the popular guy rocking into her roughly while she grinned, her face painted with pleasure. I stood there in horror. I knew I should’ve ran. I knew I shouldn’t have stared, but I was floored. What was she doing? Why was she looking so happy to have someone else inside her? Why?

           They both finished and only then did she notice me.

           "Oh. Jimin. Hi!“ She beamed as she patted down her skirt. She dangerously had no underwear underneath, but it had given the other man easy access. "Did you want some to? It’ll be easy to slip inside me now.”

           I stared at her, nearing tears.

           "Why…what’re you…“ I couldn’t form any coherent sentences because I was so overwhelmingly upset.

           "Oh honey. Did you really think I was your girlfriend?” she chuckled as she walked over to me.

           "But you kissed me and we had…“ I leaned over to whisper (because I thought it was such a taboo word at the time). ”…sex.“

           "Oh Jimin.” she looked at me sympathetically. “I felt sorry for you. It was clear you were new to everything and I wanted to help you out.”

           "What? But the sex…you said I was amazing. It felt amazing!“

           "Oh sweetie.” She giggled as the popular guy approached her, giving her a warm embrace from behind. “Sex feels amazing even when you don’t love someone. And most of the time, people don’t do it for love anymore. That’s so old fashioned. And if you wanted it to be so special, don’t you think you should’ve been more careful about who you had your first time with?”

           She cupped my face gently, and I was torn between chucking her hand away, having seen her touching another man with it, and holding onto it tightly, afraid that the only girl who had ever shown interest in me would disappear.

           "You have a lot of potential, Jimin. I sensed it in you all along. Out of all the guys I taught, your skills genuinely turned me on. And if you’re looking to learn more in the bedroom, you know how to reach me. I really think you would be fantastic in bed with more lessons. But let’s make it clear that this doesn’t mean we’re in a relationship, okay?“

           I hung my head down, mind blown. In those few minutes, my entire notion of love and sex was shattered. But I nodded. If there was one thing I understood from everything she said, it was that she didn’t love me at all.

           But I refused to believe that she didn’t like me.


           I remained naive and foolish, and I continued to go for lessons at her house, doing my best to learn how to please her, reveling in the way she focused on just me when my fingers or my dick was inside her. Just for that moment in time, I wanted to believe that she was attracted to me, that if I could show her just how amazing I was in bed, she wouldn’t need to go to anyone else. I was determined to make her fall for me, by being the best of her pupils.  

           But one day, my plans were foiled.

           "Jimin. We have to stop this.” She smiled warmly. She had asked to see me after school and I thought we were going to try something new excitedly. But she had actually called me out to sever whatever it was that we were doing. “I found someone that I want to keep forever.”

           "What?“ I felt the wind get knocked out of me.

           "I have a boyfriend now, and you’ve honestly learned everything I could teach you and mastered it.” she grinned as she caressed my cheek. “I am so proud of you.”

           In anger, I slapped her hand away and sprinted from her, ignoring her calling my name. If she had wanted a boyfriend, why hadn’t she chosen me? If she had wanted to be in a stable relationship, I was always there, waiting for her. I was infuriated and couldn’t see which way I was going so I ended up bumping into someone in the middle of the hallway.

           In my rage and pain, only one thought coursed through me –I wanted to feel someone want me, even if it was forcefully. The girl looked up at me surprised as I stared at her. She was pretty. So I grabbed her face and pressed my lips against hers. She struggled a bit, but soon relaxed and kissed me back.

           "Do you want to have sex with me?“ I breathed desperately against her lips.

           Surprisingly, she nodded, blushing profusely. So I took her to an empty classroom and pleasured her the only way I knew how. I touched her the way the Temptress enjoyed, finding that it wasn’t just specific to her; it worked on girls in general. I was prepared with a condom, and I released my frustrations and desires into this girl, who just happened to be at the wrong place at the wrong time. But she had agreed without questions, so I just let go and did what I wanted until we were both satisfied.

           "Wow…that was great…” the girl heaved as she slipped back into her uniform.

           "Yeah. Thanks. I needed to just get that out of my system.“ I ruffled my hair.

           "What?”

           "Thanks for that.“ I smiled at her.

           "Wait…you didn’t have feelings for me?”

           "Oh…no. I’m not even sure who you are.“ I blinked.

           In the next second, I felt a sting on my cheek, and it didn’t dawn on me until a few seconds after that I had just gotten slapped.

           "We’ve been in the same class for years you asshole!” She hissed and ran out of the classroom, leaving me stunned, but not feeling guilty in the slightest.

           It was her fault for making assumptions, just as it was mine with Temptress. 

          So with renewed vigor, I pursued Temptress seriously this time around. My pride and my social standing didn’t matter anymore as long as it ended with me getting her. I professed my love to her childishly and boldly. In front of school, in the middle of school, after school. I showered her with roses, made her lunch, anything that I could think of to have her look my way.

           But she soon had enough.


           "I need you to stop this, Jimin. I will never be with you. You need to get over me and move on.“ Temptress crossed her arms angrily.

           "You’re the only girl I ever wanted to be with. I wanted the person I shared my first time with to be my one and only. I truly believe that we’re meant to be.” I confessed desperately.

           "Jimin, whatever you think we were is only in your head. I was seeing about five other guys while we were having lessons. And I slept with someone right after you left my house every single time we had sex.“ she admitted.

           I gawked at her, not believing what I was hearing. I really wasn’t the only one. I never was the only one.

           "Jimin. You’re forcing your ideals and desires on me when you don’t know the first thing about me. And besides, love hurts. So why bother with it? Sex is enough to keep me happy. I don’t want anything other than that. It’s too much.”

           "But you have a boyfriend?“

           She laughed. "Yeah. He’s hott, fantastic in bed, and rich, but I don’t love him. I do want to keep him as long as I can though.”

           I collapsed on my knees, overwhelmed.

           "Goodbye Jimin.“

           As she walked away, I felt my world crashing down and I wondered if everybody around me was actually the person I was seeing. Did everyone have a darker side to them? Did everyone feel this nonchalant about hurting someone else? Did everyone think of love as something so trivial and unnecessary? Was I not worth loving?

           I was filled with doubts and trust issues. I was terrified of getting hurt again. Day after day, I was traumatized by past memories and the unknown future, all the times that I had gotten rejected.

           To make matters worse, the girl that had turned out to be in the same class as me, had told everyone about how I had used her. I was permanently labeled as a playboy and gossips ravaged that I toyed with women’s feelings, that my nice facade had all been an act to get close enough to use them for their body. 

           I was isolated, bullied, and looked down upon. The girls that had been so nice to me before distanced themselves and began looking at me with wary eyes constantly, like I had betrayed them, when in truth, it was I that had been betrayed. 

           And finally, one day, as I stared at myself in the mirror, it all clicked. A switch was flipped inside me, and I smirked at my reflection. I had had enough of it all.

           "Fine. If it’s a playboy they see,” I combed my hair up, exposing my forehead. “then a playboy they’ll get. Park Jimin doesn’t need love. Sex is enough to make me happy.”

           I accepted my fate, and became the bad boy openly. Once I embraced that side of myself, I realized that women fell and swooned for me. I had the power of seduction at my fingertips all along, but I had been suppressing it, believing that nice guys were what girls wanted. Even women thought they wanted good guys, yet they still found themselves magnetized towards the bad boys for some reason.

           No longer was I friend zoned. No longer was I not seen as an option. No longer did I take a backseat to all the other guys. No longer did I set myself up to get hurt.

           Until of course, I fell in love with someone just as excellent in bed and just as attractive as I was. And it made me realize that I no longer wanted to live that kind of life and be that kind of person. So now, here I am with a successful job and a beautiful girlfriend who I am insanely in love with. And hell, I have the best sex life ever!

           Yet, when I received an ominous letter, I sat in my living room, staring at it in horror; the flood of negative emotions coming back to me. Three simple words froze time and whisked me back to the days when I was the most vulnerable, to the days that had started it all, to the days that had given birth to Red Mask: High School Reunion.

2.2: THE REUNION (COMING TOMORROW)