Werewolves are a unique and secretive species co-residing with humanity, not much is know about them aside that they prefer living close to woodland and function better in large packs. A lone werewolf is almost unheard of, almost. It seems like Will Graham finds himself the exception of a lot of things in society, being a werewolf who lives alone with his seven dogs is just another thing to add to the list, along with pure empathy and profiling killers for a living. Dr Lecter is a man who admires the beauty in oddities, and Will Graham is, in every sense of the word, an oddity. Anyone would be foolish to pass up an opportunity to observe and carefully manipulate a man who teeters so close to the edge of pure animal instinct. Push the teacup off the ledge, watch it fall, and see if it gathers itself up again.
I know this is long but give it a shot guys, please. Okay. I’m mad. I AM MAD. I AM REALLY MAD. How dare they can take away Sense8 from us? Where there is perfect representation almost for EVERYONE. I mean, a gay character who is in love with his job and his man but can’t get out of the closet because he is afraid that he can lose everything? A transgender woman who is in really bad terms with her family that they are litteraly trying to kill her? Someone who has done bad things and still doing but still good inside and has a big heart? Someone who is only trying to do the right thing but don’t know what it is and is stuck between her heart and what should be done? Someone who just fights for his basic human rights? Someone who has back stabbed by her family? Someone who is trying to live and be happy even though her incredibly sad past? Someone who just wants to be a good son and help other people? You got all of these and more. But you know what Sense8 has to offer more? It says that no matter what you do if you have a good heart someone will see it and stand behind you, love you and support you. That you don’t need blood line to have a family, someone who is in a different continent could be your family. That people hate what they don’t understand but there will always be someone who understands. That no matter what happened you can survive. That you are stronger with people. And it is okay to love, it is okay to ask help. This show literally helped me and made me a better person. So guys please, don’t let this show go to waste. They deserve more, people they represent deserve more, we deserve more. Please tweet about it, watch it on Netflix, do something. Sense8 is a pure definiton of love, empathy, friendship, family and understanding. I know you feel what I feel. We need those right now. You know we need it and these days the best way to spread it is by social media and tv. We are stronger, together. Let’s help each other out.
Re: pure empathy: when does Will realize that Hannibal is in love with him?
He asks Bedelia about it at the beginning of 312, “The Number of the Beast is 666.”
There have been a number of discussions over time about why it wouldn’t have occurred to him earlier, or if it did, but he didn’t articulate it to himself in those terms…or if he just was in denial…or if he had considered it but didn’t have anyone to talk to about it until then…or whether there’s some significant difference between “love” and “IN love” in this particular scenario…or some combination of any of these.
The evidence in the show is that Will clearly understands Hannibal’s fascination with him as love in 209, “Shiizakana,” with his dream about tying Hannibal to the tree and tightening the rope around him until he bursts.
No one can be fully aware of another human being unless we love them. By that love we see potential in our beloved. Through that love we allow our beloved to see their potential. Expressing that love, our beloved’s potential comes true.
I think that’s in some contradiction to Hugh saying,
He’s never thought of Hannibal as being capable of love. ‘Cause like most of us he probably had love put off on a kind of pedestal, as an idea, a more perfect thing, as he made the awful realization ‘Oh crap, maybe this thing I’m feeling is like love’. It’s so dirty and awful and… you know… I don’t know. I’m basically making this up on the spot, but that would be my answer for why he might not have arrived at or realized that thought. Because look at Hannibal and you could be like… nice suits, great kitchen, great conversations, nice hair, you know, but you wouldn’t go anything like… ‘Wow, what a loving guy’. (x)
I think Will has probably in some way never conceived the possibility that Hannibal could be in love. I mean he’s got such a black heart. The awareness that they have this connection is something that Will knows and is probably in some way profoundly ashamed of, and is also, you know, he keeps coming back to and actually… kinda…. fills him with joy, as well. But I don’t think he’d ever give it the name love, ‘cause I don’t think he’d ever associate love with Hannibal. (x)
Hugh’s statements are not really carving out a semantic difference between “love’ and “in love.” Maybe Hugh is just overstating things with “I don’t think he’d ever associate love with Hannibal,” but as others have pointed out (ETA: found it here!), Will was able to conceive of love as something twisted and dark all the way back in the very first episode, with Hobbs’s love for Abigail, and by association, with all the other girls he killed. Will is able to grasp the concept.
My take on it has always been, and continues to be, that Will understood on some level–though he perhaps did not allow himself to fully grapple with the concept to the point of “in love”–that Hannibal loved him at least as far back as “Shiizakana.” He clearly felt toyed with at the end of “Savoureux” (”You were just curious” and “Wind him up and watch him go”), and it took him some calming down and listening to the way Hannibal spoke to him afterwards to get to that point, plus the experience of watching Hannibal shed the Chesapeake Ripper for the sake of getting him out of jail. But past that point, it’s mentioned so often, both directly and indirectly, that he can’t be just unaware.
I can accept that Will could talk himself into and out of the idea repetitively over the next four years given that Will could talk himself into and out of anything. Avoidance, denial, resentment, jealousy, heteronormativity, and fear could all play a part in that.
So I don’t think that Hugh’s comments should be dismissed in terms of the sentiment or the psychology, even if it’s hard for his words to work perfectly literally. Will follows a similar pattern in “Primavera” when he talks himself into and out of accepting Hannibal’s love in the offering of his broken heart:
He left us his broken heart.
How did he know we were here?
He didn’t. But he knew we would come.
He misses us.
Hannibal follows several trains of thought at once without distraction from any. One of the trains is always for his own amusement.
He’s playing with us.
Always. Still want to go with him?
Hannibal may be able to follow several trains of thought without distraction from any, but Will is distracted by all those trains of Hannibal’s thought, and it works him over a good deal.
One thing that EVERYONE agrees on in this discussion is that Hannibal is a dick, and that surely affects Will’s feelings about it all. XD
-Will has a remarkably vivid imagination. Beautiful. Pure empathy. Nothing he can’t understand, and that terrifies him. -So you set his mind on fire. -imagination is an interesting accelerantfor a fever.
What he has is pure empathy. He can assume your point of view, or mine — and maybe some other points of view that scare him. It’s an uncomfortable gift, Jack. Perception’s a tool that’s pointed on both ends.
Learning How to Love Chapter Seven, Day Nine Part Two: Ultimatum
Hello everyone! As promised, here is the next chapter of Learning How to Love! It’s been a long time, and I’m terribly sorry for that. To those of you that may be uncertain as to whether or not I plan to continue this fic, know that no matter how long it may take me to complete each chapter I have no intention of giving it up.
Also side note, Cheritz is a blessing. I played the April Fool’s Day dlc as soon as it came out, and it gave me some much need laughter. To any of you uncertain about whether it’s worth playing, I assure you it most certainly is. (spoilers ahead) Everybody deserves to witness Jumin hocked up on catnip and chasing laser pointers I think I had actual years added to my life holy crap. I still can’t believe he got Zen to eat cat food I’m dead Jumin is everything protect my playful boy.
Note: As always, MC will be referred to as MC in this story in the third person instead of blanks or Y/N. In addition, this story contains minor spoilers for Jumin’s route.
As usual, thank you so much to all who have read/liked/reblogged/replied to my original posts. I am beyond grateful for all the wonderful reactions and excitement that followed my previous chapters.
Please don’t hesitate to let me know if you’d like me to tag you in future chapter posts, as I am more than happy to do so!
To those of you who haven’t read the first chapters of LHTL or the Vampire Jumin fic and would like to, here are links to each:
The day began on a rather unsettling note, with Seven instructing MC what to do should he not return from their ‘picnic’ within five hours of his leaving the chatroom. Perplexed and alarmed, MC demanded he be safe and take care wherever they were before she wished him the best of luck. Shortly after he exited the messenger, Jaehee appeared with equal concern about his behavior, though there was a healthy level of exasperated skepticism that accompanied it. Though MC was aware Seven was prone to histrionics, she couldn’t help but worry with so little information about what was happening on their end.
MC then asked about how Jumin was doing, hoping her gentle nudge this morning would help him get through the day’s tribulations without her. Jaehee explained that he had gotten in touch with her and said he would be at the office soon; as he had chosen to complete a quick errand before going. She went on to mention that Director Han was planning to confront Jumin about the Sarah that afternoon, and that she had placed Sarah’s credit report on the chairman’s desk in the hopes that it would make him reconsider who the true victim of the situation was. MC would have to remind Jumin to thank Jaehee for everything she did, the aforementioned gesture of pure empathy as touching as it was practical. Even if Director Han wasn’t convinced, at the very least Jumin would know Jaehee remained on his side. For that, MC was grateful.
Jaehee went on to express her unease about Jumin’s refusal to talk about MC’s return to Rika’s apartment. MC wasn’t all that surprised or worried, as she was more than happy to stay as long as he needed her. She was growing more fond of him with each day, and she had a feeling Jumin wasn’t quite ready to stand on his own just yet despite his remarkable progress. So she simply asked Jaehee to be patient too and give him the time he needed. Jaehee insisted MC try to change his mind–and MC promised to do her best–but she knew this was something that only Jumin could decide for himself. Only he could come to terms with his own fears and discover what she had already known since the beginning: that he could overcome them. Because she had already decided that she would never let him feel alone again in this life, no matter what form that would take. She would always be here if he needed to talk, if he needed somebody to listen, if he was confused, if he was tired; whatever it may be. As soon as he understood that–no matter how near or far she was–that would never change, she had a feeling he would be much more open to discussion about the subject.
Not to mention the safest place in the world for her at this point was probably Jumin’s penthouse, considering the circumstances and the security detail. She had never felt more protected in all her life, and the guards were remarkably skilled in terms of noninvasive monitorization.
Relieved, Jaehee agreed and asked MC to take care of Jumin in the meantime. To which, MC smiled at the screen and replied that she could do no less. After a short farewell, she put the phone back on the nightside table and tried to work on her draft for a while. But her mind kept wandering back to Jumin and Seven, worrying and wondering and hoping things were all right. She barely managed to type out a few coherent sentences before she forced herself to take a break, thinking a change of pace might help. Gathering her spare set of clothes, she moved to the guest bathroom to take a shower and unwind. Under the scalding, enormous showerhead–God had she ever told Jumin he had marvelous taste–she let her mind wander, humming a little tune to ease her fraying nerves. Half an hour later she stepped out feeling refreshed, confident that things would work out okay for them both and that the best thing she could do was focus. After drying off and getting dressed, she re-entered the living room to find her phone blinking silver.
She opened the messenger to find Zen pouting about using Jumin as inspiration for his current acting role. Rolling her eyes with a smile, MC encouraged the endeavor in the hopes that it might help him understand Jumin a bit better. As the famous saying went: you can only understand a man when you’ve walked a mile in his shoes. But before Zen could grumble his acquiescence, Yoosung crashed into the messenger and flooded the chat with crying emojis and panicked words, ranting about how Seven was forcing him to keep quiet about something. MC asked if she should call Jumin, certain that he would deploy any help the two might need to get out of the situation safely, but Yoosung declined. Zen demanded an explanation despite Yoosung’s hesitant refusals, and continued to rail him until he figured no amount of pressure or safety hazards would make Yoosung betray Seven’s trust. Zen then proceeded to guess at their location with frightening accuracy, describing the area in enough detail to leave Yoosung speechless. MC could hardly believe it herself, and hastened to assist Zen in pressing him for a picture of where they were. She understood Yoosung wanted to be loyal to Seven, but there were some instances in which safety trumped lethal promises.
Tired, afraid, and worried about Seven; Yoosung caved and sent the photo. Shoving past her disbelief at Zen’s arguably prophetic vision, she and Zen immediately spotted Elizabeth the Third and asked Yoosung to retrieve her. Zen advised him to report back before he disappeared, and MC felt her chest tighten with fear, biting her lip. Please be okay, please be okay. For a short while all both she and Zen could do was sit there, numb with disbelief and flooded with secondhand adrenaline as they wondered what on Earth Elizabeth the Third was doing in the middle of nowhere. Zen logged out to quell a headache while MC stared at the swimming fish across from her; as if their lazy circuits and unpredictable trajectories could hold the mysteries of Elizabeth’s kidnapping and the danger into which Seven had waltzed with Yoosung in tow.
She barely had time to process before Jaehee returned to the messenger, equally shocked about Zen’s dream and hoping for their safe return with Elizabeth. She came to tell MC that Jumin’s father moved their meeting to the conference room, rather than their original plans for tea. Jaehee was convinced it had something to do with the files she slipped into his pile of documents, but the change just made MC uneasy. Why would he bump up the meeting if he didn’t have something urgent to say? She had faith in Jumin; she knew he would remain level-headed and try to solve this as peacefully as possible. But his father? She had more than enough reason to believe he would not be remotely rational about Jumin’s relationship status.
MC didn’t have time to ask her further before a triumphant Yoosung returned to the chat, attesting to his safety and that of Seven and Elizabeth. As excited as they all were, Jaehee advised that she inform Jumin after the meeting with his father, to which MC agreed. He had enough on his mind at the present moment. If they overwhelmed him with too much too soon, he was susceptible to retreating into himself again. Yoosung cheerfully agreed to take care of Elizabeth for the time being, but he did mention that Seven’s was behaving strangely and driving erratically. Jaehee advised them all to be safe as she took off to prepare for the meeting.
Yoosung was effervescent as ever, proud to be the RFA hero of the day for saving Elizabeth. MC could only smile and repeat what Jaehee said, immensely relieved that they had escaped more or less unscathed. Seven’s abnormal behavior was suspicious and a cause for concern, but she figured that his survival had been more crucial than anything else. MC advised Yoosung to use his energy to keep Seven awake upon the first mention of sleep, her heart having stopped enough times in one day. Yoosung departed with the promise that he would be vigilant, leaving her to play some relaxing music and return to her writing, partially relieved of her earlier anxieties. But without knowledge of how Jumin had fared with his father, they weren’t out of the woods just yet.
Jumin stepped into the conference room on the defensive, approaching his father with caution. “Why did you suddenly change the meeting place?” Jumin asked a few feet away from him, unimpressed by the somber look on his father’s face.
Director Han hesitated at the sight of his son’s distrustful, guarded look. He hadn’t seen that expression since Jumin had been a teenager. “…Because I had something to show you. I heard you were very rude to Sarah and thought about having a chat over tea, but I received something from my assistant during lunch.”
Jumin blinked, though he had a feeling he knew what his father’s latest ultimatum was about. “What did you receive?” He prompted.
“Apparently, someone who works for you must have done some research on Sarah. Here, take this.” His father handed over an envelope, much like the ones seen all over the building, filled with familiar credit scores and financial reports on a woman by the name of Sarah Choi. None of it came as a surprise; he had already witnessed the woman’s voracious spending habits. He froze when he skimmed several other documents detailing her debt under the name of her phony company. Then he closed the envelope again and set it on the table, crossing his arms as his father granted a futile explanation. As if Jumin had no ability to read and comprehend simple data, or understand what this newfound information further intimated about Sarah’s intentions.
“It’s Sarah’s credit report. She must have a lot of debt. And I called a couple places to check myself, and I could tell there are multiple loans under the company’s name.” No shit, Sherlock, the wry thought came unbidden.
Jumin’s reply was flat, working to keep the ice out of his tone at the sight of foolhardy sympathy suffusing his father’s features. “Assistant Kang found this,” He clarified, “although I didn’t know about the company’s financial situation…I was aware of her personal credit situation.”
“Why didn’t you let me know if you knew?” His father demanded, shocked.
Jumin gazed at the other man with deadpan disbelief. “Because I never intended to marry her in the first place.” Because it wasn’t my choice to begin with. “And I was preoccupied.” He added as an afterthought.
“Preoccupied? You mean your missing cat. I was going to talk about your ads anyways…It’s simply too much. Think of the company’s reputation…! It’s nothing to go see the TV’s network head for.” His father looked to him with ample disapproval, as if his son had shamed him irreparably.
Jumin, however, remained calm. It wasn’t the first time a person had decided he was strange, and he certainly wouldn’t be the last. “There was a reason I had to find that cat. You would not understand, father.” At the time it had seemed vital, extreme anxiety and fear clouding his mind. He felt no traces of that earlier panic now, only a steadfast calm. MC was waiting for him. The sooner he could reconcile this discrepancy and finish his work, the sooner he could return to her company. He wanted to live up to her confidence in him.
“A reason…” Director Han scoffed, looking for all the world like a tired parent instructing a foolishly stubborn child. “You care so much about that cat but not about finding someone…I cannot understand you, son.” He shook his head. “All I want is for you to meet someone and be happy…”
He knew his father meant well as he watched his brows crease with worry, but blind sentiment could only extend so far when faced with reality. Not to mention his father’s definition of happy was absurdly narrow. “Can you still say that after seeing the credit report of the woman you wanted me to marry?”
“I’m sure Glam didn’t know about Sarah’s financial situation. And just because she has financial problems, it doesn’t mean she’s a bad person.” His father chided.
Jumin’s eyes widened as he stared at him with open incredulity. “Christ. Are you being serious?” He demanded. Was his father truly convinced that these women, or at the very least Sarah, had no ulterior motive whatsoever under the weight of so much debt? “If I were you, father, I would never let those women hide their financial situation before talking about marriage. This woman is still hiding the facts. You know that she is not to be trusted!” Jumin refuted, appalled.
“This is quite shocking, but we can solve their financial problems for them. Everyone has one or two flaws they want to hide.” His father replied calmly, as if he was imparting great wisdom. “You have to let some things go if you to live in this world.” He finished with a shrug.
Jumin pursed his lips, trying to think of some way to get through to him. “Father…do you realize what you are saying? You say all the wrong things and call it advice.” It was his turn to shake his head. “I am very sad to see that you’ve lost your good judgement…”
“I’ve not lost my judgement. Sarah was recommended by Glam…I trust that she is a good woman.” He seemed so confident about Glam that Jumin had to wonder how she managed to elicit his trust in such a short time. “Sarah may have some problems but we can still accept her. Glam is so worried about her that she barely sleeps at night.”
Over an engagement? Something about that revelation made his skin crawl, gripping his forearms a fraction tighter than before. “So ultimately, all you care about is that your girlfriend is happy?” He clarified.
“Of course, I know that you’re not fond of Glam. But you didn’t like any of the women I’ve been with…It is nothing new.” Jumin was somewhat amazed that his father never thought he had a reason to be wary of the women he brought home on a monthly basis. “Anyways, I wish you’d respect my opinion regarding this marriage.”
And I wish you’d respect mine, Jumin thought with acerbic disdain. “God…” Jumin pressed two fingers two his temples. “Father…I understand why you are acting like this.”
“As you’ve said, I have never liked the women you’ve met. Because I knew that they were never truthful to me…they always wanted something from me.” He grimaced slightly as he remembered a variety of uncomfortable encounters. “So I could never understand the relationships you so desired. It all seemed like making a deal to me.” Cold, empty, and parasitic were the first words that came to mind. “But I respected that you were different from me, so I never said anything about who you were with.” He explained, levelling a penetrating gaze at his father.
“Hmm…” His father couldn’t meet his eyes, something about Jumin’s explanation making him uncomfortable all of a sudden.
“But I’ve realized something recently…after meeting someone.” Jumin began reluctantly, knowing his father would explode on him for ‘cheating’ on Sarah.
And at a speed that would put any ravenous gossip to shame, “You mean you are seeing another woman?!” There it is.
Jumin sighed, hands falling from their suspension across his chest while one lingered at his hip. “I realized what it feels like to have your heart filled after being with her.” He continued as if he hadn’t been interrupted. “Thanks to her, I’ve understood what you are like when you’re with someone. A beautiful woman who understands me and cheers for me…wanting to give her all my love and care…” His lips curled slightly at the thought of her, fighting a smile as he remembered her encouragement a few hours prior. So cute… “And also being irrational and stubborn–being blinded by love–just like you are now.” He admitted with a frown, remembering his less than ideal behavior.
“That doesn’t sound too good.” His father looked to him with a brow raised, perplexed. “Why didn’t you tell me if you were seeing someone?”
“I planned to tell you in time.” He replied easily, as it was the truth. He didn’t like concealing things from his father unless he had little choice. “And…the things I’m about to say now, please consider them words of truth from a loving son to his father.” He tried to break it to him as gently as possible.
“What more do you have to say?” Director Han couldn’t remember the last time Jumin had ever been so open and talkative, or if he ever had since the day he was born.
Jumin’s answering voice was low. “Most of the women you’ve chosen were never ready to truly love you. They were only busy trying to fill their greed.”
“There were people like that in my past, Glam is different.” His father retorted immediately, waving him off.
Jumin’s lips twitched at the sheer irony. He might have smiled if his future didn’t depend on his father realizing that this infatuation with Glam was disillusioned at best. “You were always blinded, every single time…That is your weakness.” He insisted. “Glam Choi, Sarah…both women are no different from the women you’ve met until now.”
“Glam is not like that…! All she does is worry about you.” Not in the way you’re thinking, I’m sure. “Besides, Sarah is polite and bright. The more you see them, the more you’ll realize they are different.”
Jumin frowned, as if he had any desire to see more of them after Sarah’s last ‘visit’. “No, they are not. And you are simply being so irrational that you can’t accept the evidence that’s right in front of your eyes.” Jumin held firm.
“Hasn’t it occurred to you that you’re only rejecting Sarah because you love someone else?” Director Han retorted, equally obstinate, as if it was the only rational explanation for Jumin’s behavior.
Something about his father demoting MC to the position of convenient scapegoat made the blood in his veins turn to ice. “I don’t know. At least she doesn’t try to trick me or do things behind my back, so I haven’t thought about it.” He shot back before he cooled his ire, appealing to logic instead. “When I was upset over losing my cat, Sarah shamelessly brought a fake photo of my cat to act as if she’d found her.”
Director Han looked genuinely taken aback. “I never heard about that.”
How convenient. “Besides, she went to Assistant Kang’s home to ask her about me. You don’t know this, but apparently, Glam was with her.” If he had to be brutally honest with his father to convince him, then so be it. Sugarcoating wasn’t getting him anywhere.
“Glam…?” The word was a dubious question.
“The information I have is easy to acquire.” Jumin assured, revealing his hand. “If you continue to insist on Sarah, then I will make my move as well. I will give you all the evidence I can find showing you how greedy and ambitious those women are, until you accept the truth.” Jumin was frank. “It will be a waste of time on my part, but my relationship with you is important.”
“Stop now!” His father snapped, incensed at Jumin’s flagrant disobedience. “You are insulting me by talking like this.”
“It is the same for me. It’s very sad…that you can’t understand how I feel.” He didn’t know how to articulate the heaviness in his heart. His father’s denial was vexing, but that didn’t mean Jumin was going to enjoy systematically erasing Glam and Sarah from their lives at his expense. He didn’t want to be the one to crush his father’s hope to be genuinely loved again.
His father seemed at a loss for words. “…Sad?”
“I no longer wish to fight with you about such a pointless subject…Can you not understand how I feel?” Jumin implored, unable to help the raw feeling in his voice despite the control with which the words were delivered. He didn’t want to fight with his father, he didn’t want those women endangering MC anymore than the hacker already was, and he didn’t want a marriage with a woman that looked at him as a butcher looks at plump cattle. All he wanted was to remove two variables making everybody’s lives harder than they already were, why couldn’t his father see that?
Director Han looked his son up and down, expecting to find some inconsistency that would prove the man before him an imposter. “Jumin, it’s very unlike you to say that.”
Perhaps it was, Jumin thought as he adjusted his tie out of habit. Grasping the fabric renewed the memory of MC earlier that morning, bright and playful, pulling him down for a kiss. But then, if choosing to feel meant being able to love her, did that really make it a bad thing? “Father…if you feel my sincerity, please accept my suggestion. Please stop insisting on this marriage so I don’t have to dig more up on Sarah… and let me be in peace. As your son…I only wish for this horrible situation to end.”
“…” Taken aback though he was, his father had no ability to deny his honesty. Because for once in the entire history of their relationship, Jumin chose to tell him how he felt rather than resorting to tactical refusal and evasion.
It was uncomfortable, but liberating. “And please, take your time to be more objective about the situation. I’m begging you, father.” He continued, watching as the words that tumbled out of him effectively weakened his father’s resolve.
His father let out a long breath, crossing his arms as he deliberated. “Fine…Alright.” He conceded. “I won’t mention Sarah again, but don’t say anything about the woman you’re seeing now.”
Jumin grit his teeth at the flat-out unwillingness to acknowledge MC, but otherwise chose to compromise. Responding with anger would only destroy the progress he’d made in changing his father’s mind about the situation. “…Alright. I suppose that is the best you can do.” He agreed.
“I’m sorry.” His father replied slowly, eyeing Jumin carefully. “Regardless of what’s happened, I feel I’ve upset you.”
“I’m fine.” Jumin shrugged, hoping to ease his guilt. As long as his father understood this wasn’t what he wanted and stopped strong-arming him into marriage, he saw no reason to remain upset. “I understand how much you care for Glam.”
“Yes…Still, I see that this has been very hard for you…for you to express your emotions like that…” Director Han blinked, as if he was still dazed by the sheer impossibility of it. “I will think more on it. Let’s stop this talk for now, I should be going back.”
“Alright.” Jumin gaze shifted to the man standing dutifully at the door to the conference room. “Please take my father back, chief of security. And…please tell Assistant Kang to come in. And I’d like for all the bodyguards to give us some privacy.”
“Yes, sir! Mr. Chairman, this way sir.” He was glad to see the chief was no longer hesitant to obey his commands, likely due to the sight of his father’s uncertainty regarding the situation.
Jumin nodded his farewell to his father and turned to look out at the city littered with towering buildings, mulling over his next move.
“Mr. Han…! Did the talk go well?” Assistant Kang asked as soon as she stepped inside with uncharacteristic exuberance.
Jumin sighed in frustration, but didn’t turn around. “It’s not over for good… but those women won’t be able to manipulate my father for the time being.” His lips pursed into a white line, the next phrase a muttered afterthought. “Glam must have more influence on him than I thought….I was a bit surprised.”
“Alright…” Her voice was crestfallen at the sound of his partial victory, disappointed her research had accomplished so little. “Will you need all the information I’ve managed to find?”
“Yes. I should at least know about it so send them to me.” He replied, only paying partial attention.
“Yes, alright.” She agreed, her earlier haste and excitement returning. “And I have something to tell you!”
Jumin raised a brow, turning his head to look at her. Her sparkling eyes just made him more confused. “What is it?”
“They found Elizabeth.” She blurted, as if she had been waiting for hours to say so.
Jumin stared at her blankly, electing to process the development later despite his initial shock. It would only serve as a distraction. “…Really? I’m glad to hear that.” He managed before he turned back around.
Assistant Kang blinked at his tepid response. “Yoosung is with her right now.”
“Alright.” He replied offhand, gathering the documents his father left.
“Should we go to Yoosung’s house right now?” She was amazed that she needed to be the one to suggest it.
“No. She is in good hands. Just make sure she doesn’t run away again.” He replied, unperturbed as he looked at each one more closely and one of the older statements caught his eye. Wait a minute…did that say….Sarah Choi? Does that mean…? Jumin withheld a grin. Gotcha. He needed to run this by Seven and the chief of security. He memorized the heading of the page before his father’s secretary returned to collect what he’d left behind in his mystified stupor.
She couldn’t help the answering outrage at his complete dismissal. “What?! You don’t want to bring her home?”
“I said I want to give her back to V.” Jumin explained as he returned his gaze to the evening sky, it’s darkening hue reminding him of MC’s eyes. He needed to finish his work and fact check quickly if he was to see her before she fell asleep. Would she be excited to see him? Perhaps it was foolish to hope after everything he’d done.
“St–still, you don’t want to see her?” Assistant Kang continued, unable to believe the radical change in Jumin’s behavior.
Jumin rubbed his temples. He had just achieved some measure of peace, but there always had to be something scrambling his brain this week. He didn’t want to think about Elizabeth the Third right now. “I feel like I’ll have useless thoughts if I see her. It’s a bit complicated.”
“But still…” She protested weakly.
“Assistant Kang.” He turned to address her with a measure of finality, changing the subject.
“Yes…” She looked to him, brows furrowing at his sudden engagement.
“I ignored your efforts when you were doing your research… but it helped. I admit I was wrong. I apologize.” Despite his flat tone, his sincerity was warm and clear. “It must have been very difficult for you to find all of that. Thank you.” He gave her a small smile filled with gratitude before walking past her to finish the piles of work surely waiting at his desk. “Then I’ll get going.”
“Difficult…? Thank you…?” She repeated, certain this was some strange alternate dimension. That, or the man in front of her was surely not Jumin. He was being…considerate? And…grateful?
Jaehee walked out of the conference room in complete stupefaction, opening the messenger robotically to let MC know about the latest developments as she walked to her own desk. Though she was still concerned about Mr. Han dodging his responsibility to take care of Elizabeth–and she had no idea how she was going to break it to Yoosung– she had to wonder if MC had noticed his uncharacteristic behavior.
MC grinned at the other woman’s bewilderment from within the penthouse, elated. Jumin was growing more comfortable expressing himself bit by bit, even without MC’s encouragement.
“Feels as if spring is in the air?” She asked, well aware of the change.
“Spring in the air…” Jaehee halted abruptly on her path as she tested them. “Yes. I agree…the comforting wind that silently comes to you…“ She added, just as the man of the hour unceremoniously arrived. “Mr. Han;;” She acknowledged with a measure of exasperation. The man was surprising her on all fronts today.
“Jumin!” MC laughed at his sudden entrance, delighted. “I heard the meeting went well.”
“MC, here you are.” The words were fond; thankful that she was There in the messenger. “I’m about to leave soon, so will you wait?” MC smiled at the request. Of course she would, she’d been excited to hear from him all day. She always appreciated Jaehee’s updates, but she wanted to hear the grand tale from Jumin himself. She also sensed a slight melancholy behind the words, as if he was certain he would receive an irritated rebuff for leaving her home alone for so long. Silly man, she couldn’t help but think, you didn’t do anything wrong. She was just fine in his absence, spending her time working and preparing for the RFA party approaching in little more than a day. It was sad to see how certain he was that he didn’t deserve any level of acceptance or acknowledgement, even something as simple as a greeting upon his arrival at home.
Jaehee tried to address what Elizabeth the Third’s living arrangements would be again, but Jumin evaded the subject entirely, saying that they could address it later. He went on to mention something he forgot to address at the meeting earlier, telling Jaehee that he wanted to give her a vacation as thanks for everything she’d done to help him change his father’s mind. Jaehee was largely incoherent for the rest of the conversation as he asked for potential dates, offering her time to mull it over before he returned his attention to MC.
“I miss you so much I can’t stand it.” Appeared in his signature blue heart adorned with roses, charming as ever.
Her heart was melting at the sight of his unrepentant affection, as sure as he was sincere. “I miss you too.” She reassured him.
She could almost feel his desire to dash straight home and forget the tasks that he had planned to complete as soon as she reciprocated the sentiment. “Just wait a bit more.” He implored, though she had a feeling the words were more for himself than they were for her. “I have to visit a couple places…but I’ll go there as soon as I can.” He promised. “Thinking of seeing you at home makes me excited.” He added with a smiling emoji before he took his leave.
MC bid him farewell as Jaehee insisted it all must be a dream. She congratulated her frazzled friend and assured her it was indeed real, beaming at the sight of her joy. When Jaehee exited the messenger to finish her work MC’s gaze lingered on the black screen, a soft smile reflected in the low light. She was so proud of him for paying attention to Jaehee’s efforts and acknowledging what would make her happy, instead of defaulting to what he assumed everybody wanted from him. It was a sure sign that he was beginning to understand how to care about others properly, and why it was so important to develop that understanding.
MC grinned at the door. She was so going to tackle Jumin the second he stepped inside.
u gotta think that solas who utterly loathes the inquisitor has to feel happy as a clam and really really not that torn up about his plan. TRA LA LA THESE PEOPLE DON'T MATTER AND MOST OF THEM ARE ASSHOLES I'M JUST GONNA PUT IT TO RIGHTS.
This is the most interesting (terrifying, wonderful, thematically relevant) thing in that game, right?? Like, how different Solas feels about the world, about his situation, if you’ve never, ever, once made the effort to reach out to him. How hard and closed his heart is. And what changes and blooms if you just effing empathize with and speak to and listen to a person who needs it. If you show love for a person who is obviously crying out for help.
Patrick Weekes always spoke about Solas with such gentle tender compassion, and now I understand why.
And yeah, exactly like you were saying, the game, it turns out, is about empathy!!! which shocks me only because I didn’t realize it before, during Inquisition. When the main game ended, I thought, “this game is about religious faith and about people lying” - when Trespasser ended, it became so much clearer, so much more meaningful. It really made the main game so much better. “this game is about empathy, about repairing physical and emotional breaches, about compassion and healing and letting go of the past and the pieces of yourself you can’t keep.”
What shocked me coming into the final stretch of Trespasser was that, FORGET about the flea distraction that is the Saarebas, the conversation you have with Solas is the Last Boss Fight of Inquisition. And, in a first that I’ve encountered in a video game, it’s a final confrontation lost or won purely through empathy. Solas is desperately asking the Inquisitor to listen to him, to help him, to stop him. He would never have told you anything if he didn’t want you to stop him. It’s a quiet conversation, full of pain, and it’s more climactic than all the fighting in the last 10 hours of gameplay put together,including Corypheus. This conversation is the most climactic final boss I can remember playing in years. And the game rewards you for your patience and empathy, your friendship. The connections you made opens up options, gives leeway for peace and healing.
(the game that lets you let the tortured, enslaved dragon go free rather than killing it)
(the game where cole, compassion incarnate, greatly approves when you say you will save Solas)
It’s probably not going to happen, but in the next game I would hope that, in world states where the Inquisitor cut Solas off or physically abused him, that it’s fully 6 times harder to beat the game. I hope that helping Solas come to terms is a genuine method of beating DA4. The information the Inquisitor has access to if they stop to listen to Solas is like 150 times as useful as one who always told him to shut up. And Solas wants you to use that information. In the good ending of this game, he’s so desperate that you do so. In the bad ending, he’s an island.
Can I just say that it blows my mind that dudebros continue to hate/misunderstand Sansa? The tourney through her final chapter in AGOT seems like such a definitive statement of what her character is meant to be and "she was a good girl and always remembered her courtesies" to close her narrative in book one is probably my favorite mic drop of the series. I sort of feel like GRRM did her a disservice introducing her POV last in book one.
“He was no true knight” is the thesis of the series: a radical expression of faith in the power of individuals to seize ideals back from a corrupted system and achieve existentialist victory in living up to them. It’s also a stirring moment of pure empathy, Sansa shedding her fear and reaching out to the scared little boy behind the snarling Hound mask. So your loss, Sansa-haters, you’re missing out on an incredible character.
I was watching the Madoka Magica movies again and these scenes from the opening really stuck out to me. I think it’s a brilliant move, showcasing scenes from Madoka’s happy childhood when by this point we already know of the sacrifice she makes. I also love the contrast between Madoka’s scenes, which are full of happiness and loving friends and family, whereas the other magical girls (sans Sayaka, who shares Madoka’s happy life) are shown alone.
To me, this makes Madoka’s wish all the more meaningful. It’s brought up multiple times in the actual series that Madoka has no reason to become a magical girl, as nothing she could gain from it would come close to the happy and comfortable life she already has. Madoka herself can’t even think of anything to wish for when she first meets Kyubey. But she decides to become a magical girl anyway, not for herself, but out of pure and selfless empathy for the countless girls who have suffered throughout time and space.
Numerous times throughout the series, it’s questioned if there even is such a thing as a truly selfless wish; it’s argued that all wishes for others are, at least in part, motivated by some kind of selfish desire. But Madoka makes such a selfless wish that she actually becomes selfless, transcending to a higher plane of existence. Giving up her humanity was such a huge sacrifice for her to make, as these scenes show us, but she did it anyway because she didn’t want magical girls to suffer anymore. She had the most to lose out of anyone, as the scenes with Mami, Kyoko, and Homura demonstrate, and to me that makes her the bravest of all of them.