one of those words that will always seem to be spelled incorrectly

Neighbors of the Night (Elijah Mikaelson x Reader) / Part 6

Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3 / Part 4 / Part 5

Summary: Everyone knows about the Mikaelson’s superior vampirism. However, Esther created a secondary group of Original vampires at the same time to function as soulmates for each of her children. The pairs, when together, would have insurmountable power. Thus, when Esther aims to rid her children of their vampire ways, she targets the soulmates as well. When you find yourself the target of Esther’s wrath, you look for the Mikaelsons and stumble upon an unknown soulmate.  

Word Count: 1080

A/N: This was at like 700 words for awhile. I decided to take a break and watch some more of season 4 and POOR ELIJAH WTH. I WASN’T READY FOR 4x09. I don’t cry very often but like…I was crying like a baby for Elijah. ANYWAYS…that inspired me to finish up this part. My backspace key was used so much when I was deciding what would happen for the last 300 words. I wasn’t sure what I was doing at all but, hopefully, the final product is fun. Or..I guess fun is the wrong word…you’ll see. As always, I hope you enjoy it and thanks for reading!

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A Wolf and a Raven, Part 8

Wolf familiar Shiro escaped from the galra seeking a safe place to recover. He’s led by a raven, Black, to veterinarian Lance’s animal hospital and he accidentally establishes a bond with the kind animal doctor.

a modern-ish/ fantasy au

(Part 1), (tag for this story)

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Silver, Quiet Love

Summary: Baekhyun and you (selectively mute) go out to see the Christmas lights.
Type: Fluff
Length: 1341 Words
Members: Baekhyun x Reader

/turns all of my scenarios into winter-themed writings/
- Admin Au(drey)

Originally posted by yoonsugas

“Ready to go?”

A bobbing fist in the air - yes.

He smiles brightly as you come to join him at the front door, your scarf hanging down to about your waist. “That won’t do!” he says, and wraps it around your neck twice over, adjusting it so that it will keep you warm instead of releasing all of your heat to the frigid night. “It’s going to be so cold tonight,” he murmurs, and you nod in agreement. He looks you up and down, his eyes softening and the corners of his lips falling a centimeter, another (it sounds so small but any distance downwards reflects the sorrow in one’s soul) - then shoots back up. He links arms with you and opens the door, saying, “Let’s go!” with a cheery tone.

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Hush

She doesn’t ask how he found her, it a particular skill he just seems to possess, though if one were to pull hairs the cabin is a pretty obvious guess. He places a cup of coffee next to her hand, which she looks down at, eye caught on her incorrectly spelled name on the side of the cup. He doesn’t say anything, and she doesn’t run, so he takes a seat because she lets him.

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5

This is an amazing milestone video.

One of the best and most special things about this channel is the reciprocal relationship between Sean and the community. And, remarkably, that’s just what it is: a relationship. It’s not a one-sided parasitic situation where an entitled audience slowly drains the resolve and authenticity of the YouTuber. 

Genuinely, he helps us…and we help him. We support each other.

It’s this feeling of “we’re all in this together” *cue music*. Seriously. It really does feel like we are. It has been an insane ride with all the milestones and conventions and special events (like the gaming awards). Yes, sometimes it can seem like the car for his journey only fits one, but Sean always makes sure to remind us about the (now) 11 million seats eagerly awaiting us in the back. And the gas tank’s full.

He said that he wanted to use this milestone to celebrate the community and showcase what it means to the channel, and he succeeded. I smiled and teared up the whole way through and felt incredibly happy for the people who met him (all of whom were very lovely). The community really is amazing, and I’m proud to be a part of it. But, at the same time, I felt the incredibly happy for him. It meant a lot to those people to speak to the person who’s done so much for them, and you can tell that it also meant a lot to him to speak to some of the people who have done so much for him.

And we keep telling him this.

And he keeps telling us that.

It’s the longest-running and most positive game of “chicken” in the world where both sides are continuously screaming just how much the other means to them.

So, as McKenzie wonderfully said:

I have been subscribed to this channel for a long time now, and I still have not been able to find the proper words to accurately describe what he means to me. But I’ll scream what I can:

Thank you, Sean, for being there for me. Thank you for putting a smile on my face and for giving me the motivation to go through every day. Thank you for making me feel less alone and for being my shining light during the days when all I see is darkness. You’ve said before in these videos that you sound like a broken record whenever you thank us, but I guess that feeling’s mutual, too.

Just…thank you for being you.

Thank you.

Happy 11 million.

Signs Your Book Isn't Ready for Submission

It’s really difficult to know whether or not your book is ready for submission. Even after you’ve revised it a dozen times and had beta readers pore over it, there’s still that lingering doubt that your book isn’t ready.

Some authors spend years trying to get one book that is submission ready, because, more often than not, their first books aren’t going to be the books that receive contracts. However, there are a few things you can look at in your book after all is said and done to make certain it is submission ready.

  1. Long prose. I remember in middle school we had to write a descriptive essay about something we thought was important. I wrote about my visit to Savannah, and the teacher wanted long, prose-y description. I wanted this story to be entered so badly in a writing contest, but the girl whose story ended up being chosen was chosen because she had the best, flowy prose. I failed this assignment because my descriptions weren’t flowery enough. I also remember in the eighth grade working on our descriptions for some writing test we all had to take and pass. I was describing ice cream, using ridiculously long words to do so. My teachers all praised me then, but that kind of prose isn’t acceptable in a novel. That kind of prose never should have been acceptable in school to begin with, especially for aspiring authors.
  2. Vague references. Some writers love to show off their literary knowledge by plugging in vague quotes of stellar literary writers your average reader may not have even heard of. They often do this at the beginning of chapters. Sometimes this can be meaningful, especially if your readers can connect the quotes to that particular chapter. But if there is no connection, they’re often annoying. Some writers will even use famous literary characters as a contrast to their own, but it can become so overbearing, especially if this character is constantly mentioning this literary character.
  3. Episodic storytelling. You need to at least have a basic idea of what the plot of your book is going to be, or else you’re going to fall into the trap of making each chapter seem like the episode of a television series instead of each chapter flowing smoothly into the next–even when you’re switching POVs. Did I tell you beta readers aren’t perfect? Sometimes they don’t catch this, especially if these episodic arcs are entertaining. But publishers and agents and the like want you to have a cohesive plot. So your chapter does not need to read like a single episode. It needs to read like it’s part of a much bigger plot–and it should be.
  4. Trite openings. Again, beta readers are imperfect and probably won’t always catch trite openings, especially if they’re not familiar with what trite openings may be. Publishing professionals, on the other hand, are familiar with trite openings because they’ve pored through hundreds of thousands of manuscripts, trying to find the perfect, publishable one. Some trite openings I can recall are ones that open with the weather or a character waking up from a dream. Those are probably the most common ones publishing professionals come across. Sometimes they can be effective, but they’re often not.
  5. ‘You’ plug-ins. Sometimes it’s obvious when you’ve put your opinion about a certain issue in a book. This takes away from the story itself, and the reader may even grow to dislike you, especially if it’s obvious the entire book is about you and your opinions on certain matters. For example, if you’re a gay writer and you’re writing about the gay experience, readers don’t want to read a character ranting about straight people, because then it becomes obvious that you’re the one ranting about straight people and not your character.
  6. Dialogue info dumps. Info dumps are too much information that is being delivered upfront. Newer writers can be guilty of this in exposition, and are especially guilty of this in dialogue. For example, if your character is talking to another character about how the world runs, you don’t want your character spending paragraphs upon paragraphs developing the world through dialogue instead of you developing the world through the characters’ experiences.
  7. Tom Swifties. You know that thing going around the internet that says 'said is dead?’ Well, it’s really not dead at all. I don’t care what other writers tell you. It’s fine to use words other than 'said’ once in a while, but as an editor of a lit mag, I can promise you that if you use a bunch of other tags other than 'said,’ it becomes incredibly annoying and is something I would reject right away. So don’t listen to the naysayers who claim said is dead. Said is your best word, and I rarely use any word other than 'said’ in my own stories. Sometimes I don’t even use dialogue tags at all, especially if the action is enough to convey the tone of the dialogue.
  8. Mary Sues. Mary Sues are perfect characters with no flaws. Nothing bad ever happens to them. Every character in the book loves them. And they always save the day. These characters are downright boring and are to be avoided at all costs.
  9. Word usage. If you’re unsure of a particular word’s meaning, or if you’re using a word correctly, you need to look it up. Just because Word gives you a bunch of synonyms for a particular word doesn’t mean those synonyms mean the same thing as the word you’re looking to replace.
  10. Spelling and grammar. Poor spelling and grammar is a guaranteed rejection. In fact, when I used to choose fiction pieces for my lit mag, if the pieces required more editing than a short story should need, I rejected them. If there are too many commas being used incorrectly, I’m not going to bother with that piece. I want a short story that doesn’t need too much editing. Of course, with novels, they’re still going to need a lot more editing by publishing professionals than short stories will, but a book littered with spelling and grammar mistakes–blatant ones–is going to be rejected from the first page.

You know my Ask Box is always open!

Let’s Climb

I saw a post the other day about spreading OQ positivity while dealing with all these rumors flying about, and I’ve had this sitting in my drafts for quite a while. This was written as a prompt I got from @lolcat76, which was “OQ+treehouse”. Missing Year Outlaw Queen, plus a dash of Dimples Queen. Also, neck massages. Happy Sunday.

… 

“Majesty, what’s a treehouse?”

Her mind had been whirling, trying to think of a way to reinforce the protection spell around the castle. That witch is doing everything in her power to weaken it, Regina’s sure. Every few days the patrol that the thief and his men have (rather insistently) organized comes back reporting flying monkeys prodding and lunging at the barrier. One had even managed to get through before being shot down.

People are getting nervous, and she has to do something.

But she’s not just going to ignore this sweet little boy, not when he has so firmly entrenched himself in her heart. She thought being around him would be painful, and it is in a way, but he makes her smile when she thought she would never again have a reason to. He takes her hand without fear, speaks to her without groveling and without greed. Most days she is drowning in her own grief, but when her demons don’t roar so loudly, Roland helps to prolong the silence.

“A treehouse?” She asks. “Where did you hear about those?”

“I heard Princess Snow talking about them. She told Prince David they should build one for the baby when it gets old enough.”

Regina almost chuckles as she pictures David and that motley band of dwarves trying to assemble such a thing. Roland reaches over to her untouched plate of food and steals a grape.

“Roland, what did I say about taking food off of people’s plates without asking?”

Regina looks up to see Robin walking towards them eyeing his son, who freezes and halts mid chew.

Swallowing, he turns to Regina, and mumbles, “Sorry, majesty.”

“It’s alright, dear, just ask next time.” Robin is carrying his bow, and some of his men are trickling in behind him for a late breakfast. They’re coming in from their morning patrol, she knows, and she’ll find out if they saw anything at the council meeting that’s due to start soon. Her eyes sweep over him–he appears uninjured, so it couldn’t have been too bad. When her gaze reaches his face, their eyes meet. Her heart pounds, those blue orbs setting her immediately on edge. She can always feel when he’s looking at her, ever since he helped her break into the palace. Regina hates it, the way her heart clenches, how a shiver rushes across her skin. He looks at her like…like he can see her. Like he can see everything about her.

And she can’t do a damn thing about it.

So she talks to him as little as possible, throwing biting words his way when she must. She barely even looks at him even when she talks with his son and dismisses all his ideas in council meetings, even if they are reasonable. She responds to him only with fire and steely vexation and still he seems undeterred.

“Are you bothering the Queen, my boy?” He asks, finally looking at something other than her.

Roland shakes his head. “No, Papa, I was just asking her about treewhuz–tree…treehoses.”

“Treehouses,” Regina corrects.

“Yes,” Roland nods, his dark brown curls flopping down over his head. “Those.” Regina wonders fleetingly if she got his hair from his mother. He certainly didn’t get it from Robin.

“Anyway, Roland, a treehouse is a little fort that you can build high up in the trees.”

“Like a bird’s nest?”

“It’s a little bit like a bird’s nest, but it’s much bigger, and it’s for people.”

Roland’s nose scrunches up. “How do you get into it if it’s so high up?”

Robin sits down across from them, setting his bow on the bench beside him. He’s curious now too, it seems.

She turns back to Roland. “You make a ladder, like the one in the library, so that you can climb up.”

“Oh,” Roland murmurs. “What’s it made of?”

“Wood, usually. Sometimes metal.”

“These are from the other land, are they not?” Robin says.

“Yes, they are.” Regina glances over just in time to see him put a grape in his mouth. For a moment, she forgets everything about pretending to hate him and she smirks. “It seems Roland is not the only one who needs to learn how to ask permission.”

Roland looks over and giggles. “Papa!” He squeals. “You can’t steal majesty’s food!! You have to ask!”

“I am sorry, milady,” he says, bowing his head. “I am a thief at heart, and you know us thieves and our manners–”

“Or your lack of manners,” she quips.

“Yes, we are quite unruly.” He smiles, his dimples on full display and his eyes burning her. Those dimples. They’re infuriating. Suddenly he leans forward, not close enough that anyone would notice, but close enough that she’s breathing a little faster.

“I guess I’ll just have to make it up to you,” he says, his voice low.

She opens her mouth, and she sees his eyes flicker down to her lips before returning to her eyes. “I guess you will.”

He stands then, picking up his bow. “Come along, Roland, we have to get you to Little John.”

Roland shifts like he’s going to get up, but then his face becomes adorably pensive, and he turns back to her.

“We should built treehouses here,” he says. “They’d be fun, I think. And way better than sleeping on the ground.”

Regina smiles. “Maybe someday.”

“Did your son have one?”

The question surprises her and tears through her like a knife. She’s never spoken about Henry to Roland, but she knows that people talk. The Queen has lost her son, she isn’t a mother anymore. The Savior has the boy now. I hear she tried to crush her own heart, but it was too dark, too hard to break.

She knows what they say, but she doesn’t listen. It shouldn’t shock her this much to know that Roland knows about Henry, especially because Robin knows. She wonders if the thief takes part in the gossip.

No, her brain immediately supplies. He wouldn’t. She doesn’t know how she knows, but she does. He wouldn’t say a word.

“No. My son never had one. Maybe he does now, though.”

Roland smiles. “Yeah, maybe. Bye majesty,” he says, and then he’s running off after his father.

“I hope I’m not intruding.”

The council meeting ended hours ago, and she’s been in the library ever since. There’s a stack of books half her height piled on the table, and her eyes have started to hurt from translating spell after spell.

His voice, after so many hours of silence, makes her jump.

“You’re always intruding,” she says, sitting back in her chair. The room has gotten darker as the sun sets. With a wave of her hand, the candles scattered over the table are lit.

“I can come back later, milady.”  

Regina smirks. She can tease him all she wants about being undignified, but he’s always unfailingly polite, despite her frequent attempts to deter him.

“No, it’s alright. I could use a break anyway.”

For now, she decides, she will ignore that fact that he’s incorrectly addressed her. Again.

“What’s all this?” He asks, motioning to all the books as he sits down across from her.

Regina sighs, suppressing a yawn. “The barrier keeping the castle safe isn’t enough to keep the witch and her flying minions out forever. I need something to reinforce it.”

“We haven’t seen any flying monkeys in days,” Robin says. His gaze is gentle, and it makes her feel like she is fraying at the seams.

“It doesn’t matter, it’s only a matter of days before we see them again, and I’m sure the witch is planning something. If I don’t do something soon, we’ll be defenseless. And I don’t care how good you think you are with that bow, it won’t be able to stop her. Somewhere in these books–,”

He lays a hand over hers on the table, his thumb stroking over her skin. The touch extinguishes whatever she was about to say, and she stares over at him, slack-jawed and wide-eyed.

“I only meant that you don’t have to kill yourself trying to find an answer. You don’t have to do this alone either. I’m sure Belle would help, and while I have limited knowledge of the magical arts, I am willing to help you, too. The protection spell is still up, and at the moment everyone is safe.”

He’s right. She won’t admit it, but he is. This problem will still be here in the morning, and she’s no use with bleary eyes and a headache.

“I suppose I can stop for the night. The rest of the spellbooks are in another library, anyway.”

Regina places her elbow on the table and puts her chin in her palm. Her intricate updo has partially come undone and she’s slouching; it’s rather un-queenly position, definitely not the way she was trained to sit, but she finds herself not caring. She doesn’t feel very much like a queen anymore, especially not now as she sits here with this man who disarms her at every turn. Her dark eyes drop down to where his hand still rests atop hers. She moves her fingers experimentally, her pinky peeking out to rub over one of his knuckles.

Robin stiffens, his posture rigid, and his gaze has gone from gentle and reasoning to surprised. Blue eyes dart nervously from her’s to where their hands and back up again. Her mouth, painted red today, turns up at the corners.

It seems he has been disarmed, too.

“Is there something you wanted?”

“What?”

“I’m assuming you didn’t come in here just to calm my nerves.”

“Oh,” he says, “The Princess was wondering if you were coming to dinner.”

Ah, that. Snow has been forcing her to eat dinner with her and Charming at the high table at the front of the grand hall. It’s a show of unity, the girl had argued. So every night Regina has found herself being dragged to dinner to sit under the everyone’s scrutiny, all for the sake of hope.

“And,” Robin, continues,”I was wondering if Roland is ever a bother to you.”

Regina’s brow furrows. Roland could never bother her. “Robin–,”

“I could tell him that you’re busy, or if he’s ever too much you could just ask any one of my men to take him off your hands.”

“Robin,” she says, more firmly this time, her hand shifting to clutch at his. “I love Roland’s company. You never have to worry about that.”

He’s staring at her again now, and a grin spreads slowly across his face. He bites his lip, his teeth dragging across it, and the surge of pure, unbridled want that it calls up in her is almost pathetic.

“What?” She asks, and even she can tell by the softness in her voice how much of an idiot she’s being, how much he’s affecting her.

His eyes look even brighter than normal in the candlelight, practically molten. “Nothing. It’s just…I never thought I’d be jealous of a four-year old.”

She barely has time to be surprised before Robin stands, releasing her hand from his hold, and heads toward the door.

“I’ll see you at dinner?” He calls.

She turns her head to answer him, but then her neck twinges painfully, a product of leaning over a workbench all day, no doubt, and her response turns into a groan of displeasure. The pain is sharp, ricocheting around the tendons of her neck. She reaches a hand back and gently rubs at the base of her skull.

Robin frowns. “Are you alright?”

She tries to nod, but all it does is elicit another gasp of pain.

“I’m fine,” she says, gingerly shifting her body so that she can look over at him.

“No, you’re not.”

“I am!” she replies petulantly. “My neck just hurts a little from being at this desk all day, that’s all. It will go away in a few minutes.”

“Perhaps, but when you’re back in here tomorrow doing the exact same thing, it’s only going to get worse.”

She doesn’t dignify his comment with a response, only rolls her eyes and carefully rubs her neck again. She reaches over and starts shutting a few of the books she had been tearing through earlier, but she can feel him behind her now. He’s closer, and she his eyes on her, as always, just as tangible as any touch.

“You’re still here,” she says.

“That I am.” He starts rolling up his sleeves then, revealing toned forearms and drawing her attention to his hands. She can’t help but let her gaze wander further up, admiring the outlines of muscle she can see under his white cotton shirt. Those arms could lift her easy, and she’s seen the way he handles a bow. She knows he’s good with his hands. If he would just–

“May I?” He asks. Robin is holding his hands out in front of him, a silent question in his eyes. Can I touch you?

She murmurs an affirmative, lowering her own hand, and he moves to stand behind her.

“Lean back,” he instructs. She obeys, her body buzzing with awareness. She takes measured breaths as his nearness electrifies the air around her.

The moment he touches her, the pain becomes secondary to the feeling of his hands on her skin. She is wearing one of her velvet dresses–a dark blue one with a high neckline, but her upper back is exposed and she is so thankful that she bypassed her dress with the dramatic collar this morning. His thumbs gently dig into the space between her shoulder blades, his fingers pressing into the skin of her collarbone. His hold steadily grows firmer and and when he starts kneading at the juncture where her shoulder arches into her neck, she can’t suppress the moan that slips past her lips.

He chuckles lowly, trailing a dizzying path up the nape of her neck, and the sound goes straight to her core.

She grips the arm of the chair and takes a steadying breath. “Where did you–,” she gasps as his hands move lower, his hands setting fire to her skin as they trail down her spine and massage at delicate skin and the tense muscles underneath. “–Learn that,” she finishes.

“A thief mustn’t reveal all of his tricks.”

For a moment she considers arguing with him, getting the upper hand back by forcing him to tell her, but then he’s softly pressing the pads of his fingers into the grooves of her spine.

“Oh–okay,” she murmurs, her mouth falling open. Regina can feel herself relaxing. A minute ago she had been tense at the prospect of his touch, but now he’s getting acquainted with her shoulders, his scent enveloping the air around her, and she feels as though she is liquefying under his hands. The places where his fingers have met her skin burn, arousal turning her blood into lava and melting her insides.

(He does smell like forest, like pine and new grass and the trees after it rains, and she is quickly becoming addicted.)

Regina hums when he pushes past her hair and starts rubbing at her scalp, crossing her legs to alleviate the growing ache at the juncture of her thighs. His touch is gentle, but then he scrapes his nails lightly over the nape of her neck, and she wonders what it would feel like to have him clutch at her hair, his mouth replacing his hands on her neck while the digits in question travel down, down and into her and–

“Does this feel alright?”

“Amazing,” she responds before she can think better of it, the word sounding more like a moan than anything else. Fuck.

She expects some smart ass comment from him, but it never comes. He just continues doing wonderful, blissful things to her neck. Desperately trying to ignore the pounding of her heart and its echo low in her belly, the tingling of her skin, Regina closes her eyes and focuses on the feeling of it, of being touched.

A few minutes later, his fingers relax and stroke over the skin her back, lingering for a moment before he retreats. She moves her neck from side to side, and finds not even the remnants of discomfort. She’s now faced with the fact that she’s uncomfortably aroused, perhaps, but her neck no longer hurts thanks to his ministrations.

The dark haired queen turns around–she must be a picture now, with her cheeks flushed and her hair half undone–and looks up at him.

“Thank you,” Regina says, no hint of anything other than gratitude in her voice.

“Anytime, Your Majesty,” he says, and he winks at her. His eyes are darkened, practically twinkling, and he’s smiling at her like he knows exactly what he’s done to her.

That bastard.

“I’ll tell Princess Snow that you’ll be along soon,” he continues, and then he starts towards the door.

“Regina.”

He stops. “What?”

She smiles. “You may call me Regina.”

He grins back at her. “Does that mean you’ll call me Robin?”

“Perhaps,” she says. “‘Thief’ does have a nice ring to it, after all. I guess you’ll just have to wait and see.”

“I suppose I will,” he says, and even though she turns back to her books, she can feel his eyes on her all the way out the door.