When Anthony Planakis was going through the New York Police Academy, they told him to write his interests down on a little card.
“Beekeeping, of course I put that down,” says 54-year-old Planakis, who is a fourth generation beekeeper. “And the very first job, the sergeant comes right up to me and I just look up and go, ‘Hey, Sarge,’ and he goes, 'Bees?’ and I go, 'Yeah, where?’ 'Harlem.’ And I go, 'Cool.’ That was it, that was the first job I handled,” he says.
And that’s how he became the department’s unofficial beekeeper starting in 1995, earning him the nickname Tony Bees. Planakis has been handling hives for 40 years and keeps them in his backyard in Queens and on a property in Connecticut.
“Whenever I’m working a swarm, I hear nothing around me,” he says. “I mean you can have a jackhammer running down below and I wouldn’t even hear it. I’m in the perfect world now. Actually that’s the only time I feel safe. I’m never scared, never afraid. So, uh, I think it’s in my blood.”
Oliver and Felicity have been best friends since 1st grade. So when it comes time for Felicity to move to Las Vegas, neither of them know how to handle it.
This is part one of a three part mini-verse. Enjoy!
Starling City 1998
Felicity’s heart feels like it’s going to burst out of her chest and her stomach clenches as she works to hold back hysterical sobs. Her hand trembles as she knocks on the door of Oliver’s ridiculous house.
The bitter part of her wants to rip the huge, overly expensive door knocker off of the door, tear up the insane amount of poinsettias on the walkway, and tear down all of the Christmas lights from the building.
Why is it some families are blessed with so much while others have so little?
Why is it Oliver can grow up in a literal castle while she has to move 1,200 miles away just so that her mother can get food on the table.
It’s the first night of Hanukkah. She’s supposed to be praying around the menorah and eating latkes. She’s supposed to be arguing with her mother about the fact that she feels she’s outgrown the dreidel. She’s not supposed to be on her best friend’s doorstep trying not to have a breakdown.
My flower-child, finally complete with her custom flower crown. I am so beyond pleased with this. It took me all day, but so completely worth it. I will probably periodically reblog this because I love her and this turned out exceptionally well.
English Ivy:A testimony to the long-lasting connections and bonds we form that last over the years. Ivy is incredibly durable and has the ability to bind together those who might otherwise remain apart. Determination, change, and patience.
Blackberry Bramble:Protection against malevolent spirits, food of the faeries, curative properties.
Queen Anne’s Lace:Sanctuary, dream catching, and spiritual clarity.
summary: Oliver and Felicity’s first lunch out after the curse is broken (anonymous prompt) - part of the cursed verse. a/n: i’m slowly working on clearing out my inbox… and i needed some fluffy stuff and writing oliver with anxiety disorders makes me feel better about life soooo here we go
Oliver sucked in a deep breath. Nervous energy buzzed through his body from his fingertips to his toes. He wanted this to go well. It felt like a really big step for him. Felicity was going to meet him at a diner downtown; he was going to walk all the way to meet her and he felt like he was going to explode from his nervousness. His therapist, who assured him that this was a good idea, hadn’t even met him face to face yet. He was slowly working his way towards going to his appointments in person and not over the computer, but it seemed terrifying.
There were so many people and so many things that could go wrong.
He took in another deep breath. Everything was going to be fine. He was going to go have lunch with Felicity and come back home.
Oliver stepped out the front door, double checked to make sure he had his keys and wallet before he closed the door and started on his way. The sun shone brightly down on him, but it wasn’t hot enough to be uncomfortable. He took careful steps off the Queen property and onto the sidewalk. It was three blocks down the road before he passed an older couple, holding hands and walking together. He bit down on his lower lip, but reminded himself that they didn’t care about him, they weren’t judging him, or looking at him strange.
Taking in a deep breath and letting it out slowly, he focused on the task at hand. There was no reason to think about the people around him when Felicity was waiting for him. Just the thought of her smiling face made him smile. She was so supportive and patient with him. He didn’t feel like he was weird or sick when he was with her; he was just another person who happened to have anxiety.
Eleanor of Castile (Leonor de Castilla in Spanish) (1241-
Eleanor of Castile was born in 1241 to King Ferdinand III of
Castile and León and his second wife, Jeanne Dammartin, Countess of Ponthieu. She
was the great-great granddaughter of Aliènor
of Aquitaine, granddaughter of
Berenguela of Castile, and half-sister of King Alfonso X of Castile.
Eleanor married Edward I of England in 1254, and became
queen consort of England in 1272 after the death of Henry III. She and Edward
were notably devoted to each other, and Edward was grief-stricken when she died
in 1290. As part of his grief, he erected the famous Eleanor crosses.
Eleanor and Edward would have at least 16 children, though
many of them died young. Only six would survive to adulthood: the future King
Edward II, Joan of Acre, Mary of Woodstock, Elizabeth of Rhuddlan, Margaret,
In addition to being queen of England, Eleanor was also
Countess in Ponthieu in her own right, inheriting the county after her mother’s
death in 1279.
Though Eleanor likely did not have much political influence,
she did have some cultural impacts on England. Highly educated, she was known
for her love of books and patronage of literature, even running her own
scriptorium. She was also known for her love of domestic luxury items, in
particular wall hangings, carpets, beautiful gardens, and fine tableware.
Eleanor also had some economic influence. After she became
queen, Eleanor began acquiring properties, and by the time of her death, she
had amassed a considerable amount of estates. These estates would eventually
become part of the dower assignment for English queens, leading to a stable
financial system for the queen consort. Few queens after Eleanor would play
such an active role in economics, but the ones that did were able to do so
because of her precedent.
Prompt: Dragon Queen. Post 4.16, Regina wakes up restrained in her vault and Maleficent wants to know why she's working with the heroes.
Warm breath against her cheek drags her slowly from her forced slumber. Her eyes are frustratingly heavy, and as she fights to blink them open fully, Regina’s first thought is that she’s breathed this in before, pulled that smoky exhale between her teeth, come alive with the way it burns her from the inside out, lighting her up, giving a hint of life back to her.
She’s known this before, and when her eyes snap open, Maleficent is right there, lips so close that Regina wonders if she sought a kiss while she slept, if the dragon gave in to nostalgia and sentimentality. Not like her, but so much has passed between them now that memories are muddled, things change, and if Maleficent had that urge, she would hide it. She wouldn’t have before, not those years ago when they haunted each other, destroyed each other, made love to survive the way the world broke them.
“Why?” Is the first question.
Lifting her head fully now to meet Maleficent’s gaze, Regina does’t give her the satisfaction of an immediate answer. They have both hurt each other, left scars on each other’s hearts, but this is different, they’re not on the same side now - are they?
“Why are you working with that imp?” Regina finally responds, voice tight in her throat; she’s more angry with herself for being happy about Maleficent’s return, for the spark deep down that she’d felt when she thought they could mend things between them.
Strangely, Maleficent smiles at her. “We all have our reasons, don’t we? I’m not worried about him. You shouldn’t be, either.”
Their mouths remain mere inches apart, and Regina’s eyes flicker to those full red lips for a moment, betraying herself before glancing upwards again to meet her eyes.
“He’s holdingme hostage, he’s ruined my life, and I shouldn’t be worried?”
With a soft touch, Maleficent’s fingers trace slowly down the length of Regina’s jaw as she stands up, looking down at her.
“The darkness is still in you, it always will be. But you’re working with them - for what? Did revenge stop tasting so sweet?”
The evasion is frustrating, but Regina lets it pass, looking down to the floor. There’s no reason to lie, now, not when she’s been exposed. “My son.”
The movement of Maleficent’s fingers ceases when she’s reached Regina’s chin, cradling it in her palm, forcing her to look up.
“Then we understand each other. The things we would do for our children,” she says pointedly, the fingernail of her thumb scraping across Regina’s cheek. But then her thumb makes another pass over that mark, this time with the pad of her finger, a tender touch Regina’s come to expect; always a softness that follows to cushion the darkness that burns its way out of her lover.
That hand falls away after a moment, and Regina’s sure that’s it, that Maleficent will walk away, but instead, she ducks her head down to capture Regina’s lips in a kiss that almost bruises, that’s perfect because it makes her feel something. Her brain catches up after a few seconds and then she’s kissing her in return, beginning to part her lips when Maleficent pulls away. But she’s smiling again, and she cradles Regina’s cheek in her hand.
“You shouldn’t be worried, Regina. He made a choice to hurt you, and I have made a choice to defend what’s mine.”