sorry i could not resist another post

Coffee Shop (Epilogue)

Part One | Part Two | Part Three | Part Four | Part Five | Part Six | Part Seven| Part Eight | Part Nine | Part Ten | Epilogue

[Author note: Hey guys, I couldn’t resist writing a little end to my first fanfiction! Sorry it is quite a bit later than my other parts but I wanted to get it right! Thanks for reading, and I might be posting another fic soon: when I am less busy with uni work!] 

You stood at the side of the stage, slightly obscured by the curtains that lined the wings, and watched where he was on stage.

He was answering questions, smoothly replying with charismatic and interesting answers, laughing warmly at all the right times and acting a little goofy at points. You could see the crowd in front of him completely won over, and you couldn’t help by feel a small proud smile begin to form on your face as you followed him with your eyes. 

As if he could feel your gaze, Chanyeol shot a glance to the side of the stage, his eyes searching, a small frown playing about his face, until he found where your half hidden figure stood. 

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Writing Killer Stanford Supplements #3: What Matters to You, and Why?

In Part 1, I cracked open the black box of Stanford’s Intellectual Vitality Essay (IVE); in Part 2, I coaxed the Letter to Your Roommate Essay (LTYRE) to give up its stubborn secrets. Today, I will use flattery and chocolate to get Stanford’s What Matters to You and Why Essay (WMWE) to hand over the goods.

The Prompt:

What matters to you, and why?

Yep. That’s it. Simple prompt, simple answer, right?

Well, sort of. Or not really. Hm, actually, no, no, not at all.

Like the LTYRE, the WMWE has no template, no mold in which to pour the batter of your imagination (kind of a gross metaphor, sorry). This essay requires real thought and reflection. 

If your first instinct is to answer like this…

… then you are not thinking or reflecting. You are practicing the intellectual equivalent of watching a thirty-minute infomercial because the remote is just out of reach.

Try a little harder.

In fact, try a lot harder, because there is no easy way out of thinking. Thinking is hard.

Here’s what you can do to get started.

First, notice that there are two parts to the prompt:

1. The What

2. The Why

Let’s start with The What.

Go here, and scroll down to Exercise 3, The Values Diptych. Take 10 minutes to do the exercise, and come back. 

Ready? OK.

In the righthand column you should have listed several values and qualities. What I want you to do now is list 10 more, but focus on the values in particular. What is important to you? What objects, people, ideas, memories, concepts, experiences, historical moments matter to you? 

Here are some value categories to choose from:

commitment, leadership, family, trust, creativity, intelligence, community, independence, curiosity, first impression, open-mindedness, success, considerateness….

I could list 100 more, but you know what would be better? If you did! 

Next, I want you to start eliminating the ones that matter less than the others. I know, painful, nigh impossible even! But do it anyway. Keep chipping away at your list until you have only one or two values left. These are your core values - The What that matters to you most - and this is what you should be focusing on in your WMWE.

Now for The Why.

Why do these things matter to you so much? This is where the real reflection begins. You have to probe into your belief system, your world view, your Weltanschauung (such a cool word). You have to ask yourself, in other words, why do I care about this? 

Here’s what you can do to get your thoughts flowing. Turn the Values Diptych over, and on the back start to free-write about what your core values mean to you: When did they develop and why? Was there an experience that volcanically disgorged these values, or a series of experiences that slowly nurtured them to life and strength?

Values are not born in a vacuum. Like everything else, they came from somewhere, and this essay demands that you discover the origin story of your value system, and share it.

Now you can see why I described this essay as the heaviest of the three Stanford supplements. It’s existential. That doesn’t mean it can’t be funny or plainspoken. But it does mean that it has to be real, authentic, true, personal, and thoughtful. 

Now for an example:

My family doesn’t have the sort of structure you might expect, with a white picket fence and a nightly family dinner, but we do have a deep commitment to one another’s passions. I grew up in Ann Arbor, Michigan, a university-town where my parents weren’t often home. My earliest memories were of my grandparents taking care of me and of my brother, 9 years my elder, lobbing snowballs at me in the backyard.

However, when I was ten, my family split apart. My mother, a scientist with Pfizer, was relocated to San Diego, California, while my brother stayed behind at the University of Michigan. At the same time, my father moved to China to pursue his career in management, and my grandparents went with him. My mom suddenly became a single parent and I an only child.

Through this transition, we supported each other’s goals, but an even bigger obstacle loomed: my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, and my grandmother with Alzheimer’s. Everyone came together to help them, and my own desire to protect and support them led me to pursue such activities as studying cancer metastasis and hospital work.

The wounds that we endure eventually heal, and the heart of my family is as strong as ever. Today, my mother is in remission and I can’t wait for the coming weeks when I’ll get to see my family in China. Despite the hardships, I know what matters to me: the constant support that we give each other

This student’s values are clear: they are not only explicitly stated in the final sentence, but also implicitly shown throughout. The family bond, togetherness, support, determination and focus in the face of hardship. This student also writes a successful “cancer essay,” a genre that can all too easily slide into cliche and sentimentalism. This essay does neither.

“But my life is so boring and normal!” you cry, frustrated at the injustice of having had such a peaceful, pleasant, untroubled life. Oh, the humanity!

(Couldn’t resist the sarcasm, sorry.)

Here’s the thing. You could be Buddha post-nirvana and still have things that matter to you worth talking about. Having a good life is not the same thing as having no values. One student I worked with wrote about long walks she liked to take; another wrote about comic books. The point is to reflect on why these activities or hobbies or beliefs are meaningful to you. 

Reflect. Think. These are your key words. They’re also some of the most rewarding activities you’ll ever do, and I highly recommend making a habit of them.

The 822 Word Fic

For Luck
Rated G, no warnings, well maybe for some caulk-related humor, based on this prompt from itsalwaysfour: any chance we could get another way Oliver and Felicity use a bath tub? Thanks for all of the great prompts I got; some of them I still might write! This one just…I couldn’t resist. And no, the answer isn’t blow-jobs. I’m sorry. I present to you, the 822 words I needed to make 100,000 words posted in the first three months of 2014. PS - this is part of the Rub-A-Dub-Dub series.

It wasn’t the hum of a power drill that he had to follow to find her, but the sound of humming in general. She didn’t bring her music player on these jobs because of onsite awareness, as Marty the Habitat for Humanity rep called it, but a lack of music never stopped her from making her own. When he found her, Oliver stood in the doorway to what would be the Ligurzas’ upstairs bathroom, crossed his arms, and grinned.

The best thing about volunteering for Habitat was her pink hard hat (now covered in plaster dust), and he would happily carry that secret to his grave.

She spotted him and jumped. “We’ve talked about you making a noise when you move around me,” she said, pointing the caulk gun at him.

“My bad,” Oliver said, though he kept grinning. “You almost done? Marty says the crews are about to knock off for the night. We’re invited to beers with everybody else.”

“Hmm, tempting, but we may need to pass. Sara’s done the patrols the last two nights, so she probably needs a break. I’m almost done, just one seam left. That’s my water on the counter there if you’re thirsty.” She knelt to the task again, humming once more. They’d originally started volunteering for different organizations around town because Queen Consolidated needed some serious community outreach, and Oliver still wasn’t sure why it had been Habitat 4 Humanity that had stuck, but this was their third house. Diggle usually tagged along and brought AJ with him and even Sara had shown up for a build or two. It was nice, as Felicity put it, to sometimes get out of their vigilante heads and do something quasi-normal for a change.

Oliver leaned over and snagged the water bottle, taking a gulp. “Nice work on the sink,” he said.

“Thanks. I’m getting the hang of it. Maybe I’ll quit secretarial work and become a full time caulker. Think I’ve got a future in it?” She grinned over her shoulder. There was a smudge of white paint on her cheek right by her hairline that Oliver found absolutely diverting.

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justanotherfiveminutes  asked:

I've finally found the prompt post again. Can I request another? "Just five more minutes" klaus to Caroline. Couldn't resist, sorry!

Thanks for the request justanotherfiveminutes! I enjoyed writing this :) Though I’m pretty sure I keep writing Klaroline in bed recently. Oops :P

                                                                                              

Try as she might, Caroline could never crawl out of Klaus’ embrace without waking him. That didn’t mean she wouldn’t keep trying, but she would have thought the exasperation she felt momentarily when he stirred at the first sign of her leaving would have diminished by now. If there was one thing about him that was true, it was that he was always alert. Awake or asleep, she had discovered, Klaus’ sense of self-awareness never lessened.

“Where are you going?” he asked, voice deep and husky, and half muffled by the pillow his cheek was pressed into. The arm around her waist tightened, hand clutching at her hip, as he sleepily blinked up at her.

“I have to leave. I have an early lecture and I need to go back to mine to change first,” she replied, keeping her words low so not to disturb the peacefulness the early morning held, even in a place like the French Quarter right outside the windows.

Running a hand through his hair, she smiled victoriously to herself when he smiled back lazily and allowed his eyes to droop shut as he buried his face back into his pillow. He laid on his front, one arm tucked under his head with his legs stretched out along the entirety of his side of the bed. Caroline loved taking him in as he slept. It was a side of him no one else got to see. He looked younger when he slept; the thousand years vanishing in one simple act to allow her a glimpse of the 23 year old man he was underneath.

“You have clothes here,” Klaus said matter-of-factly.

“I’ve worn them all, and everything else has been destroyed,” Caroline pointedly reminded him, hissing slightly towards the end in reprimand for his repeated actions of tearing off her clothes in the prelude of their passions.

“I’d apologise but I wouldn’t mean it,” he answered nonchalantly, pulling her closer into him (which was the complete opposite to what she needed to do right then) and nuzzling his face into the crook of her neck. “Just five more minutes.”

“No,” she said strictly, leaning her head back and making sure to keep her hands on his shoulders in a show of pushing him away. His lips brushed against her skin continuously until there was no way of denying how awake he was or how he was trying to seduce her to stay by peppering her neck with kisses. Huffing, she admonished him, “Five is never five.”

“Then make it 10,” he stated slyly, with a smirk to match on his beautiful features and full lips as he pulled back to catch her eyes.

“I can’t,” she emphasised, adding her own pout when he reacted in the same manner. Taking advantage of his sullen mood, she quickly managed to shuffle away and sit up until the only hold he had on her was a hand around her thigh. “I’m sorry, but I’m going to be late. I’ll pop back later if I can. I have so much housework to do, too.”

“I don’t see the point of you having your own place, love. We spend almost every night together as it is, and its mostly here,” Klaus all but grumbled when she finally slipped out of his grip and to the edge of the bed.

“Its closer to campus,” she reasoned, picking up his discarded top from the night before by her feet and slipping it on.

“This is only another 20 minutes,” he countered, turning onto his back and pushing himself up against his pillows so he could lounge lazily against the headboard. There was a slight pause where she moved to stand up when he suddenly spoke up to add, “You should move in.”

Freezing, Caroline twisted around to stare at him incredulously. He looked so innocent and unfazed by the sudden proposal which would undoubtedly take their relationship to the next level. Elbows pressed into the mattress on either side of him with his hands resting lighting on his stomach, he merely gazed back expectedly as she couldn’t help but take a moment to simply blink in disbelief. They had been together (officially) for over two years now, but when the timescale was forever, was that a decent pace before moving forwards?

Seriously?” she gasped, still shocked at his suggestion.

“Yes,” Klaus replied curtly with a nod, furrowing his brow as he admitted, “I always thought you would when you came down to New Orleans.”

Caroline couldn’t deny the thought had passed through her mind at first, when she had turned up on his doorstep with a couple (or ten) bags and a sunny smile asking if his offer to be her last love still stood. They had had a whirlwind romance as he lived up to his other promise of taking her wherever she wanted to go; London to Rome, by the way of Paris (Tokyo had to wait on account of her college semester starting at Tulane). They had settled into a somewhat ‘normal’ relationship once her classes had started and they had found themselves apart for the first time in three months since her arrival in his city. His home had never been hers for longer than a handful of days at a time, so the thought of moving in with him had passed quickly. Until now.

“Why didn’t you say anything?” she questioned, curious, because Klaus wasn’t the kind of man to keep his desires to himself. After all, he did try and court her for two years whilst she was with Tyler.

“Because you had your plans. You already knew where you wanted to look for an apartment, and what kind of place you wanted,” he told her with a shrug to play off the emotions she could see whirling just beneath his stoic exterior. But she knew him better than that (than anyone by now) and she could detect the hint of disappointment he had kept hidden for her happiness. However, the mask slipped soon enough when he gave her a soft smile. “I couldn’t deny you that. You were so excited.”

Smiling brightly, she fought down the lump that formed in her throat and urged away the fluttering butterflies breaking into dance in her stomach at the truth behind his words. Finally, she had someone who put her first and for whom she was the one. Klaus was a selfish man, but when it came to her happiness, he compromised; evidently, sometimes without her knowledge. The simple, pure and adulterated love she felt for him swelled inside her for the millionth time since she had known him, allowing her to love like she never knew she could.

“I would have been just as excited to be here,” Caroline said honestly, reaching out to cover his hands with one of her own. “Thank you for giving me the choice, though. Living by myself has been fun and different. I think I needed it.”

“Of course,” he brushed off, capturing her hand between his in one easy sleight of hand. Tugging gently, he forced her to bend a knee up onto the mattress so she could lean in towards him as he slowly licked his lips and informed her, “You know if you move in, that’s it, right? I won’t let you move out again.”

Swallowing at both his sensual actions and the words of an ultimatum, she nodded. “I know,” she said, understandingly.

Klaus nodded back, eyes boring into hers with a dark heat and a small hint of nervousness she rarely ever got to see in him. “And?”

Pursing her lips, Caroline tilted her head before offering him a gentle smile and a squeeze of the hand. “Can I think about it?”

“Sure,” he breathed out, and she could see the relief fill his being by the way his shoulders slumped and his features lightened up. But there was still a hint of edginess to his tone, and she instantly worried that he might mistakenly take her early morning apprehension as rejection. Luckily for her, however, Klaus seemed to know her as well as she claimed to know him. “Caroline, its ok. Take your time; think it through. The offer stands for whenever you want.”

Sighing in reassurance, she crawled up onto the bed until she could lean over him and press her lips to his in a sweet yet passionate kiss. She curled a hand around the back of his neck whilst keeping another on the pillow under him to balance herself. Her sleep tousled hair fell around them to form a curtain, and she could feel his fingers thread through them until he was gently massaging her scalp in the most provocative way.

“I love you,” she murmured against his mouth when they parted. Giggling when he tried to keep her in place, she trailed her hand down to his chest until she could push herself away enough that he was forced to retract his hands. “Shoot! I’m late!” she gasped suddenly as she caught sight of the clock next to his bed.

“Well, if you’re already late…” Klaus began suggestively, hurriedly trying to grasp at her when she began to scramble off the bed.

“Haha, no,” Caroline deadpanned, managing to avoid his half-hearted attempted to reel her back into bed with a light slap to his hands as she scurried to her feet. “Klaus, seriously!

“Fine, fine. Go; leave,” he huffed, dramatically throwing himself back onto the bed and turning onto his side so he could snuggle back into his pillow. “Enjoy your class. I’ll just be in bed for another couple of hours.”

Throwing him a glare at his jealousy-evoking words, she scoffed when she saw the smirk pulling at his lips even as his eyes remained shut with his face half buried into the luxuriously soft and comfortable pillow. “I hate you,” she hissed before turning on her heel and making her way to the adjoining bathroom.

His words had formed an image in her mind which would only make her long day even longer, but luckily she had methods of pushing them aside. For today, it would be mentally moving her stuff into his room. She was a design major after all, and his room was large enough for her to make her presence known in every way she had ever wanted to.