perfect ancestor

Sorcerer Week: Origin Stories

image credit: KILART

Sorcerers are usually born with their powers or are tied to a font of magical force. This is what makes a sorcerer unique from any other spellcaster. When I was first writing content for this class week, I struggled. This was until I discovered just how open-ended it was. As long as it isn’t a patron or a spell you can write down in a book, it counts! Even when you look at the existing sorcerous origins in the PHB and UA content, you can see how varied a sorcerer’s power source can be. A sorcerer’s power can originate:

  • From their ancestry: like the draconic bloodline sorcerer. The favored soul has an angelic ancestor. Even the Sea, Storm, and Stone Sorcery origins tie a character’s heritage to sea, air, or earth creatures.
  • From a connection to a certain plane: like the Shadow Sorcerer, who is connected to the Shadowfell, which imbues their soul with power. The Wild Magic Sorcerer is tied to the plane of Limbo, which fuels their chaotic powers.
  • From a connection to a specific magical power: The Phoenix Sorcerer draws power “from the immortal flame that fuels the phoenix.” It doesn’t necessarily mean their ancestor was a phoenix, or that they are connected to the plane of fire, but rather a legendary flaming node of magic.
  • From proximity or exposure to magical power: simply witnessing a dragon or phoenix seems to touch people with magic, as does simply being exposed to the Shadowfell.

If we want to boil this down to a single source of magical power that includes all of these, I would have to say that a sorcerer’s power comes from their soul. A soul that has been touched, blessed, tainted, or born with some form of inherent magic. So let’s discover what other ways your sorcerer’s soul can be altered! The lists below are mostly for flavor, but I encourage everyone to make subclasses or prestige classes for these because I only have so much time! But don’t worry, I definitely have some planned for the rest of Sorcerer Week!

Unique Magical Ancestors

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A counterargument against "It's Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve"

Every person who grew up christian learned that the first humans God created were Adam and Eve, a man and a woman in the Garden of Eden. (Which I assume is where everything is perfect) They were the ancestors of every single human in the world (which means that we’re a bunch of incest babies but that’s another story)

Here’s where people already get the idea that god made a man and a woman at first and not two men or two women because it’s unnatural to be gay or that he wouldn’t like people to be gay. But they don’t think farther.

God told them that they could eat from whichever tree they wanted except for the forbidden tree where the forbidden apples of the knowledge of good and evil hung. There were other apples on other trees that they were allowed to eat. They didn’t eat from the forbidden tree. Until a serpent came up to them and deceived them to eat the forbidden apples anyway.

It gave them the ability to conjure negative and destructive concepts such as shame and evil and to see the differences between each other’s sex.
They panicked and started to cover up their genitalia, which is supposedly the reason why we wear clothes today.

And when God found out about that, he proceeds to curse the serpent and tells them Adam and Eve that there are consequences of their sin of disobeying God and banishes the humen from the Garden of Eden.

What do we learn from this?
The answer is: God intended humans to not know about their physical differences, which would lead to men and women not knowing which sex is which, which would then lead to gay and lesbian couples, transgender people (even though the concept of genders wouldn’t exist but for example a person who has the physical appearance of a man would behave and feel like a woman) and people who are non-binary (again, because the concept of genders wouldn’t exist)

Conclusion: God also intended humans to be LGBTQ+ because he knew what would have happened if Adam and Eve would have obeyed him.

Feel free to correct me if something is off!
I’m so done.

America used to represent hope in the minds of so many people (not that it was in any way perfect, but for my ancestors it was a place to start a new life and escape religious persecution and poverty). Now it’s nothing more than the Western epicentre of intolerance, exclusion and hatred. In September I’m moving to Ireland and I won’t be back.

The Five Most Powerful Women in Middle Earth

What an awesome question, thank you! :D The five women are listed in alphabetical order, which may not necessarily represent their true ranking.

ARWEN

  • Ancestors: Arwen comes from basically the most famous (and powerful) line of ancestors in Middle Earth. in fact, you’ll be able to find a few of her ancestors further down on this list. She’s descended from all three elvish royal families (the Vanyar, Noldor, and Teleri), and she even has an ancestor who was one of the Maiar!
  • Friends: She was friends with Frodo, who destroyed the One Ring. Her husband was King of the Reunited Kingdom, and through him she was friends with the King of Rohan. And thanks to Legolas and Gimli, she also held some influence in Mirkwood and Erebor. 
  • Age/Experience: Arwen lived to be a couple thousand years old. The vast majority of her life was fairly inactive, though, so she doesn’t have a whole lot of experiences (that we know of.) However, she spent a great deal of time with her grandmother, Galadriel, who was the most powerful elf in Middle Earth at the time, so she was probably learning plenty. Then after the War of the Ring, she helps Aragorn rebuild Gondor and the Reunited Kingdom, the most powerful kingdom of the Fourth Age.
  • Titles: Arwen didn’t hold a formal title in Rivendell. After marrying Aragorn, though, she becomes the Queen of Gondor and the Reunited Kingdom. 
  • Wisdom/Power: Arwen doesn’t exhibit any sort of “magical” powers that we know of. But she does have a way about her - generally, everyone loves her. And she’s pretty wise (she’s especially helpful to Frodo, who suffered quite a bit after the War of the Ring.)
  • Narrative Bias: Arwen is, according to what Tolkien wrote about her, perfect. But, what we know about her life is pretty much centered around her romance with Aragorn.

GALADRIEL

  • Ancestors: Galadriel is a princess of the Noldor, and is descended from all three of the elvish royal families (Vanyar, Noldor, and Teleri.) And you know all those impressive ancestors that the other women on this list are bragging about? Yeah, well Galadriel was related to them and actually knew them while they were living. 
  • Friends: Galadriel was friendly with many of the princes of the Noldor, who were the great movers and shakers of the First Age. During her time in Doriath, Galadriel grew very close to Melian, and would also have been well-acquainted with Thingol and Luthien. During the Second Age, Galadriel was good friends with Celebrimbor, who made the rings of power. And later in the Third Age Galadriel’s main alliance was with her son-in-law, Elrond. We also know that Galadriel was in contact with Gwaihir and the great eagles. Oh, and there’s the minor matter of her long-lasting, close friendship with Gandalf, one of the Istari (and therefore Galadriel’s second friend among the Maiar.)
  • Age/Experience: Galadriel had the longest time in Middle Earth - about 7,000 years. But don’t think that she’s all quantity over quality! Galadriel arrived in Middle Earth after traveling over the Helcaraxe, the Grinding Ice. She then spends most of the First Age in Doriath, learning from Melian. She marries Celeborn, and in the Second Age she lives in several places (depending on which version you’re reading), but pretty much always in charge. She lived in Eregion for a while, befriended Celebrimbor and the dwarves of Moria. She ends up in possession of one of the elvish rings of power, and survives the War of Saruon and the Elves. In the Third Age, she comes to rule Lorien when their king abandons the realm. She serves on the White Council (as the only female member), and plays a huge role in making the decisions that led to Sauron’s expulsion from Dol Guldur, and many of the events of the War of the Ring. 
  • Titles: Interestingly enough, Galadriel has never been a queen. This is interesting because she’s ruled a couple different elvish realms in her time. However, she’s only ever been the Lady Galadriel. There are some who believe that she has a claim to the High Kingship (Queenship?) of the Noldor, though, so it’s not as if she isn’t still powerful without the title.
  • Wisdom/Power: Even without the ring of power that she wore, Galadriel was incredibly powerful (“magically”.) She studied under the Valar in Valinor, and then under Melian in Doriath. Sauron considered her to be his greatest threat in Middle Earth. And she was incredibly wise (thanks mostly, I think, to the 7,000+ years of experience she’s got under her belt.)
  • Narrative Bias: Tolkien loved Galadriel. Loved her. Which means that we learn a lot about her story. And while she wasn’t always perfect, nearly all the information we get about her is positive.

LUTHIEN

  • Ancestors: Luthien was the daughter of Thingol, King of the Sindar, and Melian, one of the Maiar. So while her family tree is short, it’s very impressive.
  • Friends: Luthien, despite her incredible story, led a pretty sheltered life. She spent almost her entire life living in Doriath, so her friends would mostly be limited to that realm (which would include Mablung, Beleg Strongbow, and Daeron.) She also would have known Galadriel quite well. During her adventures, Luthien became very good friends with Huan the Hound. 
  • Age/Experience: As I mentioned, most of Luthien’s lifetime was spent sheltered and, frankly, inactive. But, after meeting Beren, Luthien goes on a quest that includes enough experiences for any lifetime. She befriends a talking hound and is kidnapped by a couple of Feanor’s sons. She then sneaks into Angband while disguised as a vampire, and distracts Morgoth were her singing and dancing while Beren steals a silmaril. After returning home, Luthien watches Beren die, and then dies of heartbreak herself. While in the Halls of Mandos, Luthien sings a song so sad that it actually moves Mandos to pity (which had never happened before, and hasn’t happened since.) She then chooses mortality, and lives a second life with Beren. 
  • Titles: Luthien spent most of her life as the princess of Doriath. She doesn’t really gain any sort of political title after her quest and marriage to Beren, but by that point she’s so famous and beloved that she hardly needs one.
  • Wisdom/Power: Luthien was probably even more “magically” powerful than Galadriel, thanks to the fact that she was half-Maiar. Singing, especially, was a specialty of hers, and she managed to make all sorts of things happen by singing. Most famously, she sang to Morgoth and, with her singing, lulled him into a very unobservant stupor, allowing Beren to cut a silmaril from his crown. Luthien seemed to be pretty wise (at least, her actions were much more mature than some of the other characters in The Silmarillion.)
  • Narrative Bias: Tolkien was basically in love with Luthien. No, for real. She’s based on his wife, whom he obviously loved a great deal. So Luthien is generally portrayed as perfect.

MELIAN

  • Ancestors: Melian doesn’t have any ancestors to brag about. That’s because she was present at the creation of the universe.
  • Friends: Melian’s life in Middle Earth was even more isolated than Luthien’s. We have no mention of Melian ever leaving Doriath while she was queen. But, we cannot forget that Melian had a whole life before she met Thingol, and could count the other Maiar (and the Valar, especially Este, Lorien, and Yavanna) as her friends.
  • Age/Experience: As Queen of Doriath, many of Melian’s experiences were sort of lackluster in comparison to her daughter (or even her friend, Galadriel.) If we look at her life before Thingol, though, we have to wrap our heads around the fact that Melian took part in actually forming and creating Middle Earth itself. In fact, her great claim to fame among the Ainur is that she taught the nightingales to sing.
  • Titles: Melian was Queen of Doriath for the vast majority of that realm’s existence. 
  • Wisdom/Power: As far as “magical” power, Melian is the most powerful woman on this list. As one of the Maiar, Melian is essentially a demigod. While the exact limit of her powers is unknown, she was able to create and maintain the Girdle of Melian, a forcefield which protected Doriath from enemies, for centuries. She was also incredibly wise, and not only foresaw many of the events of the First Age, but also gave some excellent advice (which, unfortunately, was usually ignored.)
  • Narrative Bias: Tolkien doesn’t write all that much about Melian. But we generally get a positive outlook on her character, even though she remains quite mysterious.

TAR-ANCALIME

  • Ancestors: Tar-Ancalime’s most recent ancestors were all kings of Numenor. And, if you go back far enough, you find out that she shares all the same ancestors as Elwing. It’s just that, being mortal, there are a lot more generations between her and “the greats.”
  • Friends: Somehow, I imagine that Tar-Ancalime didn’t have many friends. We don’t have a whole lot of information about her, so we actually can’t name any friends for her (especially powerful or important friends.) While her father, Tar-Aldarion, was a close ally of Gil-galad, Tar-Ancalime mainly cut ties with the elves of Lindon, so…
  • Age/Experience: Tar-Ancalime is the shortest-lived woman on this list (for all that she lived to be 412 years old.) However, during her lifetime she ruled over the most powerful mortal kingdom in Middle Earth (arguably the most powerful kingdom in Middle Earth, elves included.) And not only did she rule over Numenor, but hers was the second-longest reign in Numenor’s history (second only to Elros, the first king.) Even though she didn’t continue her father’s alliance with Gil-galad, Numenor was still in a frenzy of sea-voyages and exploration, so it must have been an interesting country to rule.
  • Titles: Tar-Ancalime grew up a princess of Numenor. She ended up succeeding her father as Numenor’s ruler, though, and was the First Ruling Queen of Numenor.
  • Wisdom/Power: Tar-Ancalime didn’t have any sort of “magical” powers. And, frankly, she doesn’t always seem all that wise, and lets the biases instilled in her by her mother control many of her actions as an adult.
  • Narrative Bias: Tar-Ancalime has, and Tolkien doesn’t shy away from pointing them out. It’s also worth noting, though, that the story that Tar-Ancalime appears in is focused on personal and relationship issues, and so the focus is never really on her power or her reign as Queen, but rather on her role as daughter and her part in the drama of her parent’s marriage.

((A quick note on the women that weren’t included in this list: I narrowed this down to women in Middle Earth because, if I were to include Valinor, all five women would be Valar, which might not be what you wanted. If you want a version including the Valar, let me know. Also, if interested, Elwing and Idril were both very close runner-ups, and were basically only beaten by Tar-Ancalime because they never held all that much political power.))

SOURCES: The Silmarillion, The Unfinished Tales (“The History of Galadriel and Celeborn”, “Aldarion and Erendis”), LOTR, LOTR Appendices

How to Choose A Defensive Handgun, Part VII: The Way of the Gun

Above is a Sig Sauer 1911, one of the best production .45 caliber pistols. The 1911 is a sleek, classic weapon much loved by people who appreciate time-tested designs.

This brings us to the last consideration for choosing your gun - its personality. This is a far more important consideration than you might think.  If you feel that your gun reflects yourself, you will enjoy it more, you will practice and train with it more, and that little extra edge may one day save your life.    

The idea that a weapon might have a personality or a “soul” made perfect sense to our ancestors.  In both Eastern and Western culture, warriors named their swords, and cared for their weapons with reverence.  Stripped to its essence, it is about treating something on which your life depends with respect.  If you disrespect your weapon, you will end up neglecting it; and that neglect means that your weapon may fail when you need it most.

Artist Ekua Holmes, who designed our poster, “May We Forever Stand,” uses news clippings, photographs and vibrant color to energize her art. “I work primarily in collage, rescuing what has been lost, forgotten or discarded. I then construct new images, pieced together like a down-home quilt, that resonate with a message that is personal and universal.”

Holmes used the word “eternal” to describe the feeling of the museum. In the
poster, a curvilinear pathway shows the not-so-perfect road her ancestors had to follow. Silhouetted profiles symbolize both man and woman facing the future. Atop is a crown echoing the museum’s corona. Other parts of the collage highlight aspects of the museum, including its bronze exterior, its historical documents and its music collection. Photos within the collage are from the museum collection as well as The Washington Post’s archives. The quotes are on the walls of the museum.

Read more on the new museum here. 

Begin from this moment and go back rapidly in time, as you would in a film, until you reach the sound of cave-wind. Perfect darkness. The ancestor utterly naked, rock damp beneath her bare feet and a loose bundle of tinder in her palm: dried grass, shavings from the inner bark of cottonwood (which burns even when wet), matted hair, windblown seed. She is there.

Or she is not there. She stands there, or her lithe, filthy body, her wild hair, is just another image in a succession of images arranged (by whom?) for heightened romantic aura. For the Romance of the Self. Not the self beneath the fluorescent lights. Not the self devouring processed meat in a nearly empty parking lot contemplating the cut at the tip of the finger and the impossibility

of unselfish kindness. Not the self on a slow drive to the office, past ailing strip malls and unconscious men pissing themselves beneath bus stop awnings. The self as it can only exist in imagination, the pure self by which we measure and resent the actual. Outside, nothing is yet invented. Wind in the trees and wind in the cave. No longing more complicated than hunger or

sex. Wind in the cave of the mind.
— 

From We Can Savor Nothing Pure by Danielle Cadena Deulen

this is the first poem to blow my mind in a while.

I want all the ancestors

every headcanon, different headcanons for every story

stuttering signless? ENTHUSIASTIC FORWARD-LOOKING signless? manic-depressive signless? young summoner with early ptsd from cavalreaping? hard-faced unsexy mindfang?  screaming rageful handmaid?  handmaid who takes dark enjoyment in her tasks? berserker bruiser disciple? punk rebel dolorosa whose son takes care of her as much as she takes care of him? vain princely dualscar? brusque matter-of-fact dualscar? loud jocular ghb? straight-man ghb???  

write all the damn ancestors

give me them all

(metaphorically. this is not a request for people to send more to me.  just keep doin’ your thing that’s all I want)

megananomous  asked:

What do you want to see you next season? How would a new head writer clean up the mess Goffman made? What would your first episode of season three look like

Oh man, that’s a list that could fill like 10 bibles… I’ve been thinking of making a whole proper list, but it honestly feels like a big project to take on, I have that many thoughts (also I’d like to make a blog of it and compiled all of our notes and wishes for s3, possibly just limited to realistic must-haves, and then tweet it at the writers/new showrunner just in case they actually read it). 

But for now, in short, what we need is this:

  • Immediate confirmation that Ichabbie is headed for canon. If this was another show and another ship they could afford to play coy, but if they want the fandom’s full and enthusiastic support in bringing in the viewers for next season they’re gonna need the power of Ichabbie, it’s just that simple. If they don’t they’re gonna be making things 10 times harder for themselves than it needs to be and it’s already one hell of an uphill battle. And shiptease the CRAP out of them, from right out of the gate, it doesn’t mean they have to bang immediately, in fact it buys time for it to take a while (how is that concept so hard for writers to grasp?). 
  • The mythology needs to be dealt with and firmly established. Most fans, myself included, don’t care if that requires some crude retcons, but it needs to happen - fantasy shows are without exception built on the foundation of mythology. It doesn’t need to be perfect but it needs to be stable and filled in enough to let fans and viewers ignore or fanwank the rest.
  • Careful and smart handling of Ichabod’s grief - Tom’s got the right idea about it being kept down and bubbling up, but it can’t blow up on Abbie (at least without her blowing up on him in return tenfold) and it can’t linger after it’s done. It should be like a sneeze - a few ah-ah-ahs and then -TCHOOO and then we’re mostly done with all that. And after that he needs to pick himself up (not Abbie doing it, HIM) and get a freaking job and work on being a better partner for her. 
  • Seriously - he needs a job, not just as a consultant for the station unless there’s an explanation for it like Reyes being on board or Frank coming back as Captain. It’s a point of it’s own, it’s absolutely key that he starts to earn his keep and stops mooching off of Abbie. 
  • Focus needs to be on Abbie as much as these past two seasons have been focused on Crane - ideally without the melodrama and unnecessary involvement with the villains. The Mills sisters are already more compelling that the Cranes on their best of days, and they have TWO perfect setups from the finale with Abbie’s stoned ancestor potentially being brought back and Grace who could return as a spirit or something at least as on a recurring basis. And if they’re bringing in ANY white people this season, especially white guys, let it be Joe Corbin - he could not possibly be more perfect for it. He’s connected to both Abbie and Jenny, he connects to Corbin Sr who we should see more of in flashbacks and explore in terms of his relationship with both sisters (highly overdue), and the actor is a total cutie who is active on twitter and actually interacts with fans - all he’s missing is the bow to be completely gift-wrapped. 
  • Consequences. Actions and events on the show NEED to have consequences - physical and emotional. The gang needs to be injured when they fight, or if not then their invulnerability needs to be explained in canon. They need to deal with all that’s happened to them the last 2 seasons - I know they want a reboot but it won’t work by just sweeping everything under the rug, if that was the plan then they should have had the finale just completely reset everything. 

Them’s the big ones, the absolute musts imo, and it should go without saying that: no woobification of villains, no more random white guys without their own purpose on the show, no self-inserts, no more BS about platonic Ichabbie in interviews, no more treating the fans and viewers like idiots, and keep the focus on Ichabbie/Team Witness. 

Beyond that, personal preference wishlist: No return of Orion or Hawley, no more flashbacks of Abraham, ideally a lot fewer flashbacks of founding fathers and dudes Ichy knew back then (if we have to have them lets focus on Ben Franklin and Grace). Keep modernizing Ichabod slowly - baby steps only, which he’s already taken a few of. “Replace” him with the Mills ancestor being de-stoned - endless opportunities with that and no shortage of ways to make it a very difference experience than Ichabod’s. Basic worldbuilding - add townspeople who doesn’t die or turn evil within an episode, show more of the police station, add background characters. If unsure, listen to Welcome to Night Vale that manages to populate a whole town full of characters without any visuals at all. 

I could go on but I think that covers most of it both in terms of what I feel absolutely NEEDS to happen and what I want to see (which is an important distinction, imo). Perfect s3 opener: Mills ancestor is de-stoned and acts as a way into the show for new viewers, thus giving the show a bit of a reboot, with everything else being Ichabbie going about their business with Frank and Jenny. Monsters are fought, Ichabbie hugs or has an UST moment or something, and Reyes returns and is revealed to be more than meets the eye.