With pack-bonding and stuff … what if humans are the only species who developed body language as an instinctual means of communication?
Humans are known for being terrifying in battles … especially if there’s more than one of them. They can coordinate their attacks without talking to each other. They only need to glance at each other and they know when and where to go. When asked about this mystical near-telepathy, most just make one of their strange movements-with-meanings called a “shrug” [note: a “shrug” suggests confusion or uncertainty] and say it has something to do with “knowing” the other person.
Sensible species explain what they’re doing when they want to work together. Yet once when when we were attacked by pirates, the two human guards barely said a few words. One whispered “Watch the green one.” - barely even a proper order! - and that was all they needed to charge forward.
They didn’t even need to shout their plans to each other when the two Z'arzz started the pincer movement they’d discussed before boarding. One human just stopped, the other hadn’t even asked her to distract them, she just did it! Charging forward and causing chaos almost immediately was a massive advantage for us. With only the cargo crew of a food shipment, it got us the extra time we needed to plan.
After we came to an agreement and took over, seeing them “team up” against the massive Grulnar (also known as “the green one”) was incredible - a reminder of the power of pack predator species. They barely even spoke and yet it was like they were wearing comms and voice-silencers. They moved like a hive-mind species, but with the tenacity and grace of humans to boot. I would have excreted in fear had I seen such powers used against me.
Plot: The reader is kidnapped, left alone in utter darkness. Once the day of her auctioning comes, she’s given to the head of one of the worlds most powerful gangs, Jungkook. She was nothing but a gift to him. But her little soul turns out to have the power to turn the tides in the worlds angriest ocean. And it turns out, Jungkook isn’t the only man whom eyes have settled upon her.
Warning, this chapter contains strong sexual language, and is smut. It contains fingering.
I had never really felt something so disguised by love. A feeling that betrays my mind and feeds my body, and in return my heart becomes vulnerable. Lust. I had never really felt it once in my life, up until now. But I still don’t understand it. The very feeling of it, the desire that bubbles up in your stomach, clouds your judgement and erases any of your critical thinking skills.
Oh how he flooded me with this feeling, the dopamine he released within my brain, the endorphin’s that acted out of pure desire for pleasure, one that he could create and expect for me to return. I had always seen it as a sin, but he makes me see it as an addiction.
- Dandelion has a number of properties associated with metaphysical skills: it’s used in dream work, divination, especially effective in spirit communication and summoning, and will supposedly aid psychic development. When the leaves and root are burned they can be used as an incense to boost clairvoyance and divinatory abilities.
- The leaf, root, and flower have a few different aspects, but are mostly similar as far as magic goes.
- Dandelion is associated with wind and air spirits. It was also supposedly used in invocations to Hecate and death related deities.
- Bury or plant dandelions at the northwest corner of your home to bring favourable energies and draw good luck.
- They are also used for: purification, wishes, healing, positivity, and protection from bad dreams.
- Dandelion root helps the body dispose of unwanted skin bacteria.
- It stimulates digestion and helps the liver.
- Because it helps the liver rid the body of toxins and excess hormones, it benefits the female reproductive system by assisting the regulation of hormone production.
- It’s a gentle laxative and a natural diuretic.
- NOTE: always make sure the dandelion greens you harvest have never been submitted to herbicide.
the idea that people would do nothing if all their needs were met usually comes from a perspective of someone who works a lot and wants a break and doesn’t know how to conceptualize the difference between ‘i wish i didn’t have to do something i hate for 40+ hours a week’ and 'if i had the opportunity i would never do anything ever’
never submitted anything to a blog like this before and it’s not going to be near as good as everyone else’s but I couldn’t get rid of the idea
Back home, you used to be known for storytelling. Not the wild and unbridled force of creation that builds and destroys entire worlds in moments, that fearsome superpower – though you have that too, but that is for you and you alone thus far, and you haven’t gotten the courage to share it – but rather the ability to retell a memory in the most entertaining way possible.
People seemed to like it when you took your memories, pieces of yourself, and told them as a story. Back home they did, at least.
At school, your roommate mutters something about not sharing so much personal information as she turns her socks inside out. In the classroom – where you can never quite remember what you’ve learned, but you always leave with more stories creeping about in your mind – occasionally students listen with a gaze just a little too sharp, the feeling of more eyes than you can see on your back.
But storytelling is in your blood, it’s part of who you are, and so you tell your stories. Happy ones, funny ones, tales of adventure and mischief that you thought were mundane until you grew older. Actually, compared to Elsewhere, they are mundane.
There’s one story you haven’t told yet, one that everyone in your family pretends not to know. It’s the tale of why you came to Elsewhere, the tale of the Thing you saw as a child, that took your cousin when the two of you played in a forest, and promised to return for you. Why you decided to go to college upstate and not attend the local university. You thought you were escaping the madness. (Sometimes you see the shadows at the corner of the stairwell and hear horns on the quad at night and wonder if you leapt from the frying pan to the fire)
It’s why you twine iron wire through your curls in decorative spires and carry salt packets sewn into your clothes, and carry old things from your grandmothers that you aren’t sure will help you (but grandmothers can be so very stubborn)
You’ve started to hear things on campus. Students who disappear and come back Different, if they come back at all, or other students who make the brave but foolish journey Underhill to rescue one of their own. Everything you’ve learned since coming here suggests that asking about it is pointless, if not outright dangerous, but at the same time you can’t help wondering if they’d know anything about the Thing that took your cousin. You know that one day you’ll find one of the students who made it There and Back Again, and when you do, you’ll tell your story.
Close to autumn you find yourself in one of the thin places on campus. It was an accident, you were simply too preoccupied with an upcoming exam to notice the air turn unseasonably warm and humid, and before you know it, you’ve walked three times the length of what the hall should’ve been, and each time you find yourself back at the lockers, the air is warmer, heavier, and the ground is softer. Somehow you instinctively understand that you must keep moving. To stop here would be a grave mistake. So you keep walking, and the air feels like the breath of something huge and moist, and you’re pretty sure there’s mud squelching beneath your feet now but you really don’t want to look.
It’s when you do look that the tiles, soft as mud and unyielding as stone, swallow your feet to the ankles and you are trapped. You curse your foolishness in three different languages – two of which are fictional and one of which was invented by you. This one feels stronger, and when you say “Flames take it!” you can almost feel a spark of phantom heat by your legs – and hear something laugh in the darkness.
“You are stuck,” it says.
You demand to be set free, even as you twine a strand of iron-wrapped around your hair and clutch your necklace – from your grandmother, a tiny bottle filled with salt and mustard seeds. You’re not sure if mustard seeds have any significance or if she just liked them – and try to look anywhere but shifting, oily shadows that smell of dust and moss. You suspect that demanding anything from one of Them will be a fruitless endeavor, but you’re frightened now and the liquid tile is sucking you down further. It’s up to your knees here. It occurs to you that you might die like this, that you might disappear just like your cousin and all those other students disappeared.
“What will you give me?” It asks.
Before you can think, you answer, “A story.”
There’s a bubbling silence before It makes a hiss that sounds too pleased to mean anything good. “Yes,” It says, “A story. But I’ve heard all yours. Make it one I haven’t heard before.”
This is tricky. The wrong story could mean death, and when It says It’s heard all your stories It probably wasn’t exaggeration. You could tell It one of your original tales, the stories of pirates and dragons and giants, but those feel too personal. There is too much of you in those stories, and that is your world, with your characters. You can’t help feeling a bit protective of them.
That just leaves The Story.
So you tell It a story about two children playing in a wood. About a thing like a skinless horse with the torso of a man grafted into its back. About fleeing in terror as the Thing chased you both through the trees, and your cousin’s squeal of fright as it grabbed him, just missing you as you splashed across the shallow creek. You go into greater detail than you ever have before, telling It things you didn’t even tell your family before they called the police.
You remember the color of the Thing’s rolling eyes and glistening muscle.
You remember the way its head seemed to wobble back and forth like it was attached to the wrong body.
You remember it promising that water would not always save you.
You remember knowing that running water might be the answer, even if you don’t have the question it goes to yet.
You didn’t want to tell this story, but you can’t stop the words now no matter how hard you try.
All is silent when you finish your tale, and for a moment you fear you were talking to the air. Then, with a slurp, the tiles spit you back out again and you’re standing on solid ground.
“That is a good story,” It says, “I think I’ll keep it.” with these cryptic words and directions to simply follow the hallway, he leaves you and you find yourself running all the way to the stairwell. You thank your lucky stars that you got out none the worse for wear and you are astonished that you managed it at all.
When you tell your roommate, she is concerned. “What did you give Them in exchange for Their help?” she asks you.
“Just a story,” You answer.
“Which story? You have a million.”
“It was the one about-” and you stop. Not because you never decided whether or not to tell your roommate. Not because you’re preoccupied or distracted.
The words wedge in your throat, sticking to the back of your tongue, coating your tonsils like thick dust. They won’t come out. For a moment you’re afraid that you might not be able to speak at all. So you try to tell a different story, and that comes out loud and clear. But when you try to explain again that you told the story of how Something took your cousin away – presumably Underhill if not someplace worse – your tongue seems to shrivel in your mouth and the words lodge in the soft parts of your throat like little needles.
That’s a good story. I think I’ll keep it.
It isn’t your story to tell anymore. For once, words do not obey you. Your roommate sees your rising panic, sees the tears welling up in your eyes, and takes pity on you.
“Tell me a different story,” she says, “A made-up one.”
She used to scold you about telling stories all the time, so at first you don’t understand what she’s doing. Then she asks, “What story didn’t you tell?”
The rather obvious wink when she says this gives you and idea.
Words are your tools and they always have been. Until today, they have always obeyed you. You know how to make a truth sound like a lie and a lie like truth. And so you carefully craft a lie so close to the truth, using characters so close to being you and your cousin, that you are sure your roommate understands.
Forever after this, you season your stories with lies in case you must trade them, so that the truth remains yours to tell. You learn say nearly anything and keep it just close enough to fact to fool someone.
You don’t realize that you’re learning to talk like Them until you find one trapped in the snare an upperclassman set near the library, all salt and iron. It yowls like a cat and screams like a child and its three hands scrabble for purchase. It wants out, you know this.
You cock your head and say, “What will you give me if I release you?”
It’s only fair, you think. A story for a story.
You’re playing a dangerous game.