storm battered

Request: Storm

Request: Can you write one where the reader breaks down to Bobby because she is pregnant with Dean’s baby. Thank you :)

Word Count: 1,069

<3

The rain has been coming down in buckets all night, and the wind whips at the sides of the house in such a way that every now and again, the foundations shake so severely that Bobby nearly ends up waiting out the storm in the panic room.

When he sees the flash of light outside the window followed by a rumble, he isn’t paying enough attention to think of it as anything but another facet of the storm. What he does pay attention to, however, is the frantic, loud knocking that reverberates well beyond the door.

The knocking doesn’t stop until he answers, pulling the door open to be bet with a harsh gust of wind.

“Y/N?” You’re soaked and dishevelled, and he isn’t sure which has smeared your makeup more – the rain, or the tears you’re trying and failing to hold back.

“Can- can I come in?” It’s a stupid question, but it’s the only thing your fuzzy, addled brain can come up with. Bobby doesn’t speak, but he nods, ushering you into the warmth of the house where you grew up and forcing the door closed against the wind.

“What the hell are you doing out in this?” Driving in this weather would be dangerous enough without you being in a complete state. You don’t reply, though, shivering in the hallway and wiping at your face in frustration. It scares him – you’re the closest thing he has to family: he’d raised you since you were six months old and your parents had been killed, leaving no-one to keep an eye on their demon-blood infected child. He’d taken you in, and found that he’d quickly become all too fond of you.

“Y/N, seriously. Where are Sam and Dean?” It must be something to do with them, because it elicits a sob from you, “I don’t want to play twenty questions with you.” He steps forward, resting his hands on your shoulders and pressing an affectionate kiss to your forehead, “Give yourself some time, alright? Go get a shower, get changed. Everything’s fine. Nothing is going to hurt you while you’re here. I’ll make you a hot chocolate while you’re gone, just how you like it. How does that sound?”

To his eternal relief, that manages to get a nod and a weak smile from you, and he pulls you in for a gentle hug before letting you go. He doesn’t look away from you until you’re safely up the stairs, and then sighs to himself – he’s never seen you like this. But you need him, and he’ll be damned if you’re not going to have him to go to.

***

It’s nearly half an hour before he hears you coming down the stairs, but there’s nothing wrong with that – especially when he sees how much better you’re looking. Sure, your eyes are still red-rimmed and you’re still shaking with the effort it takes not to cry, but at least your clothes are warm and dry and your lips are no longer bluish with the cold.

You shuffle into the room and take a seat, swallowing hard before looking up at Bobby. He sets the hot chocolate – piled high with cream, chocolate shavings, and marshmallows – in front of you, and then takes the seat next to yours. The storm outside still batters the windows, but the kitchen is warm, and with the pair of you bathed in warm light, it’s almost cosy.

“Talk to me.” Bobby prompts softly, reaching over and resting his hand over the top of yours. He sees the way you flinch at the gesture, and for a moment he thinks the worst, “Is it Dean? Has he hurt you?” He hadn’t been overly happy when you’d begun dating the eldest Winchester two and a half years ago, but you’d been happy, and Dean had given him a heartfelt promise that his intentions were pure – but Bobby had promised in return that the moment Dean so much as breathed the wrong way at you, he’d find himself without the means to do so again.

“Y/N, sweetheart, I need you to talk to me if you want to fix this.”

“I can’t fix it.” You speak properly for the first time since you stepped into the house, “It’s broken. Very broken.”

“Still with the ambiguous, sweetheart.”

It takes you a few moments to muster up the courage to come out with it, but eventually, you do.

“I’m pregnant.”

Silence, apart from the sounds of the storm outside, fills the room. For a long moment, he can’t find it in himself to speak – and then…

“Do not drink that.” He wraps his spare hand around the mug and slides it away from you, reminded suddenly of the copious amount of whiskey he just dropped into that, “Is it… it’s Dean’s?”

You scoff, “That’s the problem, isn’t it? Of course it is.” Sorrow and bitterness taint your tone in equal measure, and Bobby winces.

“Have you told him?” He tries, and you nod again.

“Yeah. That’s what the second problem is.” You sigh, pulling your hand away from his in order to run your hands over your face, skilfully masking a sob – but not enough. Bobby knows you inside and out, and picks up on it instantly.

“He reacted badly?”

“If saying I’d ruined everything and needed to get the hell out of his sight is reacting badly, then I’d say so, yeah.” You spit, but your voice breaks and before you know it, your head is on his shoulder and you’re sobbing openly into him, everything coming out. He holds onto you tightly, a silent promise that he’ll never let you go; that you always have him.

***

It’s nearly three hours later, by the time he’s managed to calm you down and get you asleep. You’re still asleep on the sofa when his phone rings. He answers, begrudgingly, when he realises who it is.

“Dean?”

“Bobby? Have you heard from Y/N? She’s gone and we’ve been trying to track her all night, but we haven’t found anything.” He rattles off, his voice frantic and shaking.

“Why? What happened?” Bobby asks, watching you sleeping form.

“We got in a fight. I said something stupid. God, Bobby, I’ll never forgive myself if she doesn’t…” He cuts himself off, and swallows hard, “Have you heard from her?”

He pauses, “Nope. Nothing. I’ll let you know if I do.”

“Thanks, Bobby.”

Entwined Part 1

Hello, and welcome to my new blog!! This story will contain lots of sexual exploration with tentacles. If that makes you uncomfortable, I suggest you cut and run.

Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoy!


Relationships: Octo!Bucky x Reader

Summary: Reader is the daughter of a captain of the Royal Navy, stationed in Jamaica during the 1700s. She stumbles across an injured man, hidden away from prying eyes, only to discover he’s more than what he seems.

Warnings: blood, injuries, sex with tentacles (late chapters), sexual exploration (later chapters)

Word Count: 1932


Entwined - Part 1

by mermaidsbluetail


The sea had always called to her. The sound of the waves. The cry of the gulls. The briny smell of salt and seaweed. The curious fish darting through the crystal blue shallows and trails of white foam.


Her family was originally from London, her father a captain in the Royal Navy and sent here to the Caribbean to search out the last of the pirates and make way for the promising sugarcane industry. Her father was a good man, strong and hard working, his men loyal to a fault. Unfortunately, that meant no one would dare approach his beloved daughter, his only child, the “light in his eyes” as he affectionately put it.


Stationed at Port Royal, her father was constantly busy, gone long hours and not returning to their estate overlooking the sea until the wee hours of the morning. The servants did all they could to keep the young miss occupied and safe at home, but having just passed her nineteenth birthday, her sense of independence was strong. Her mother had died of influenza a few years back, leaving her to spend the days exploring the coves and tide pools and palm tree forests of her father’s property alone whenever she could escape her lessons.


Her long curls flowing loosely down her back, her having pulled out the painful myriad of pins, she slowly made her way down the white sands bordering the front of her father’s property. The hem of her petticoats were soaked through, her bare feet sinking into the warm sand. Sighing, she looked back over her shoulder, up the cliff to the large house, the setting sun casting a warm glow over the pale stone and wood. From here she could barely make out the workers tending to the yard.


Looking back over the sea, she smiled as the sun dipped lower into the sky, creating a beautiful rainbow of colors across the wispy clouds in the distance, the remnants of the large storm that had recently battered the island.

Keep reading

reyescott  asked:

20, scott/liam or scott/reyes?

Here are all of my feelings. (Read here on AO3

Listening rec: The Lightning Strike (part 1) by Snow Patrol

As we huddle together, the storm raging outside

Scott stirred from his light sleep as he felt movement from beside him. The room was dark, and he had to blink a few times to make out shapes of the room around him. He was in his bedroom at the Kadara outpost, the only one of the quarters he was provided with that he ever frequently used. There was no light outside of the glass ceiling and windows except distant signs of guard posts on the outpost perimeter, and the only sound came from the heavy pounding of rain from outside, bouncing off of the glass.

Goosebumps rose on his skin as he realised that the sheets had slipped off at some point in the night, and the air con sent a chill across his bare torso. His fingers reached across the bed blindly, feeling the recent warmth lingering on the mattress.

There was a flash of lightning from outside, lighting up the room and Scott realised that the man he’d been sleeping beside was now sat on the edge of the bed, hunched over a little. He shimmed closer, wrapping an arm around Reyes’ middle, pressing a kiss to his back.

“Can’t sleep?”

Reyes glanced around at him, a gentle smile on his face, “Just a lot on my mind.”

Keep reading

sounds of thedas: RIVAIN

beaches tousled by sea breezes, cliffs battered by storms, swamps filled with spirits, and people far from the reach of the chantry. a haven for pirate, mage, elf, qunari; a community who will fight to protect their traditions and freedoms.

featuring tracks from the lion king broadway, finding dory, avatar, ori and the blind forest, & moana

(listen)

i buy myself flowers
and wear lipstick on 
days that i feel like crying. 
my mother didn’t teach 
me how to love myself first, 
but you did when you left, 
the first time. 
you see, i am a fast learner, 
i have learnt that flying too 
close to the sun, will set 
your heart on fire. 
i have also learnt that you are 
not the sun, after all. 
a storm is battering the 
south of england and
i'm thinking about telling
you that i miss you.
—  and tonight, the world is dark and miserable
what do you associate with your craft?

moss, pinecones, wet graveyards, sharp eyeliner, vervain, cloudy days, deer antlers, moths and bee wings, feathers, storm battered coasts, rock beaches, fir forests, soft silent mornings in a snowy wood, rain dripping down window panes. lichen, jars on every surface, dripping wax and ink stained hands.

what about you?

a day will come when i do not preface these scrawls with “well this sucks completely” but, in the time-honored words of aragorn (or was it theoden?), it is not this day.

basically, i was picturing erin in jay’s lap, but her being the one who’s protecting him, and it all went down hill from there. metas from this latest set by yours truly. 

  • erin? his voice is hoarse, ragged. yeah, it’s me. i’m coming right now but i want you to stay on the line. her feet are in her boots and the keys are in hand. i’m fine. don’t drive in this weather. always protecting her, never himself. i’m coming, jay. don’t try and fight me on this. a silence, a breath. okay.
  • there are things erin doesn’t know if she’ll ever be able to voice. (let me in. let me in. i’m your partner, i’m yours. it’s my job and everything i want to be the one to protect you like you do me.)
  • but she tries. she tries, with her fingers curled into his hair, holding him tight as he crumbles in her arms, flinching with every flash of lightning, tears in her eyes as she tries to keep them both from falling apart.

Keep reading

budding

they say they want you soft and delicate
a bloom in early spring
still breathless from the earth
but when you come up slightly wilted
break through the winter storm
a little battered, a little bruised,
they cower away
in search of another flower
a natural jewel
that doesn’t have to reach as far
for the sun

anonymous asked:

Imagine Claire showing Jamie that he can be rough with her in bed

*She rode hard, eager to be in his arms once more, the harsh thrashing of the wind and rain soaking her to the bone.

She had been brought to France with almost no warning. Her legal guardian, the Duke of Sandringham, had business here and therefore she and her companion, Mary, had to come too.

A healer by nature, Claire had spent the majority of her free time in the presence of the sick and needy, assisting the locals in anyway she could.

Sandringham had been eager to have them away from the close confines of their temporary home, and so hadn’t even twitched at the thought of the two young ladies out alone.

Claire had been quietly grateful, freed from the ever watchful eyes of their minders in London, she could relax here.

It had been one such quiet night when she’d met him. A tall, handsome highlander, who’d charmed her over late night tipples. His penetrating blue eyes had bewitched her.

She’d been called to a brothel on the outskirts of the small city near where they were staying. One of the younger girls had taken sick and none of the doctors nearby would treat her. But Claire would.

As she had finished with the patient, she’d been on her way to leave when she’d bumped into him, walking down the narrow hallways with his bejewelled companion.

Jamie Fraser.

Or Red Jamie to the English.

She should have been afraid. She’d heard the rumours.

But she wasn’t.

No, not Claire. Claire was entranced. Enamoured with the dashing man who’d bowed before her, taking her hand and kissing it softly before escorting her back downstairs.

It hadn’t taken her long to learn of his name, *and of his reputation*, but something about him called to her.

Days and nights had been spent tracking him down, lingering quietly in tiny sconces so she could simply catch a glimpse of him.

He’d spent most of his time in Paris, of course, raising his Jacobite armies. But when he’d needed more discretion, he’d ridden towards the coast.

Claire’s lips tingled as she pushed her horse forwards. It wasn’t the cold that caused it, but the recollection of their first kiss.

Shaking herself of the memory she pushed the horse harder still, a frantic attempt to be wrapped in his arms once more.*


The storm battered the wee cottage, the waves slamming against the cliff face as Claire pulled open the door and snuck inside.

“I didna think ye would come wi’ the weather.”

Claire jumped, her hand coming to cover her mouth as she turned to see him tucked away up the corner.

“I wouldn’t have left you here alone. No matter the foul conditions.” She replied, her heart calming as he came into focus.

Jamie.

She swallowed, her hands shaking a little as she began to light candles in the tiny room.

“I’m sorry, Claire, for the way I spoke to ye afore. I havena been able to stop thinking of ye, of what…”

“Jamie, stop. It’s alright. I should have told you, I just…” she paused, her shoulders sagging as she let the tension flow from her. “I should have told you.”

“But ye couldna. I see why.”

“Mary, she can’t know about this. I’ll be in a lot of trouble if they find out I’ve told you.” She could see him better now, she could see the sincerity in his eyes.

“Claire. Dinna fash. I ken what ye’ve sacrificed to tell me. I willna betray yer trust.” Jamie held out his hand, beckoning her forward.

Claire went, eager to have him as close as possible.

“This is so dangerous, Jamie. It’s treason, and Sandringham will *never* let me go.” She buried her face against his chest as he ran his hands up and down her back.

“Aye, but we’re safe here, Sassenach. Here in France, awa’ from England.”

“I can’t stay here forever, though. I *have* to go back sometime.”

“No. Ye don’t.” He interrupted, his voice dark. “Claire, ye’ve told me more than ye should. You wouldna ha’ told me if ye didna feel something for me.”

She lifted her head, running her nose along the length of Jamie’s chin. Cutting to the quick, he’d sliced to the core.

And he was right.

“I don’t want to think about it anymore, Jamie. We don’t have much time. I just want to spend what I do have with you.”  Running her finger under the gap in his shirt, she teased the warm skin there, aching to be close.

“Ye ken I want you, Claire. But I dinna wish for us to just meet like thieves in the night.”

“We won’t, we’ll make it work. Just for now, Jamie. Please.” She pleaded, kissing down his neck as she pulled his shirt from his kilt.

The thunder clashed overhead, followed swiftly by a flash of lightning.

Jamie pushed Claire against the wall of the cabin, holding her hands above her head and trapping her back against the solid wood.

“Marry me, Claire. Murtagh will help us. Marry me and I’ll take ye away until all of this mess has calmed. I dinna care about Charles and his claims, I *do* care about you.”

Claire gasped, her chest constricting painfully as she tried to flex her hands.

“We’d be on the run forever. We’d never be safe, Jamie. Not even here. What would I tell Mary? I’d never be able to go home.”

He silenced her with a passionate kiss, tilting her head back and taking her lips against his.

Her breath was coming in unsteady pants as he released her and rested his forehead against hers.

“I’ve been a wanted man since I was nineteen, Claire. I ken this isn’t ideal, but I willna let any harm to come ye. Say yes. Marry me, please.”

Her stomach felt tight. Her throat was dry and her hands shook, softly, as she looked him deep in the eye.

Could she?

“Say yes, Claire. I love you. Dinna overthink this. I *will* take care of ye.”

“Yes.” She whispered, his confession warming her to the core.

Jamie let go of her arms and brought her right hand up.

“Tonight, go home and pack yer things. I’ll come for ye.”

She nodded, her left hand rising to cup his cheek.

“We still have some time here, don’t we?”

“Aye, I am'ne ready to let ye go just yet, Sassenach.” He smiled, his eyes lighting in the candlelit room.

“Good, I’ll get the fire ready.”

Jamie nodded and shifted to the side to let her free, watching as she gathered and set the kindling ready to light.

“Yer so beautiful, Claire.”

She turned her head, gazing over from where she was kneeling by the hearth.

“I love you, Jamie. Truly.”



The bread was stale, and the cheese mouldy, but they’d made do.

Claire pulled the blanket tightly around her shoulders, nuzzling into Jamie’s side as he prodded the dwindling fire.

“Do we have to wait?” She murmured, hovering her lips over the exposed inches of skin at the base of his neck. “…because I don’t think I want to.”

Jamie turned, lust racing through him. But he managed to hold himself back, locking his fingers with hers as he kissed her gently.

“Claire, we dinna have to rush. I promised to come for ye, and I will.”

“It isn’t because I think you’ll leave me, Jamie. I want you.” She gripped him tight, deepening their kiss. “I want you *now*”

Claire leaned back, pulling herself from Jamie’s embrace as she laid flat. “You don’t have to be gentle with me, you know. I’m not meek, I won’t break.”

Jamie laughed, a quiet sound that just about reached Claire’s ears as she let her knees fall open.

“I watched them at the brothels, when me and Mary had to wait downstairs. I spoke to some of the women who worked there. I don’t need you to make me feel good, Jamie.” She brought her head up, making eye contact with him as she tugged the fabric of her skirts over her knees. “I just *want* –you.” She reiterated, her hips rolling off the floor in a very provocative move.

Jamie leaned in closer. His lips aching to be against hers. Still, his eyes kept darting to the smooth expanse of her exposed thighs.

“Claire.” His breath tickled the fine hairs that lay against Claire’s neck, causing her to shudder as she ran one finger along the covered length of his arm.

“If you’re to send me back into the belly of the beast,” she leaned up and kissed him briefly to stop his protests, “I want something of you to take with me until you come for me. Please, Jamie.”

Jamie slid his fingers under her skirts, the backs of them skimming along the fine hairs on her thighs.

“Higher.” She whispered, her eyes closing just as the thunder rattled the walls once more.

He had his hands against her heated, damp flesh before he’d actively made the decision to do so, the moisture coating his fingers in a warm film as he pulled back.

“No.” She gasped, her hands suddenly gripping his wrist to stop him from moving. “Don’t stop, Jamie.” Then her lips were against his, fully now, nipping along the sensitive skin of them as she teased him, coaxing him onwards.

Lightning sparked outside, lighting the room in a bright blast of white as Jamie tore at her bodice, the taut material tearing as he bared her to the temperate room. Claire’s back raised as her corset fell from her shoulders sending tiny fibres of cotton and silk across the pale-white of her belly. Lust shot through her, his passion igniting her own.

Jamie panted, his whole body teetering on the edge of something incredibly libidinous. He wanted her, there was no doubt about that. His groin throbbed with increasing pressure as he watched her ribcage rise and fall, the sleek strands from her ruined clothing sliding off her and disappearing onto the boards below.

Taking some control, Claire raised her hips and shimmied out of her flowing skirts, leaving her completely naked below Jamie.

“Your turn.” She pleaded, tugging at his sleeve as he gazed over her supine form.

He nodded, sitting to remove his shirt before, quickly, undoing his belt and throwing it aside. His kilt fell easily to the ground and was forgotten in an instant.

Claire took one look at him in the dim glow of the fire, her eyes alight with desire.

He was truly magnificent, quite the sight to behold. All muscle and sinew, standing proud and tensed as he awaited her call.

Pushing herself up on her elbows, Claire ran her tongue over the slight dip above his hipbone before taking a bite at the softer skin between there and his ribs. She could taste the salty sweat from his skin against her tongue as she fell backwards, lying down once more.

“Come to me, Jamie. Lie with me.” She whispered, running her palm along the length of his thigh and then up along hers. She let her hand loll, drowsily, against her crotch, not quite touching herself, but damn close.

She was truly the temptress, but one Jamie would ride to hell and back for.

“Aye, Claire.” He returned, hypnotised by every move she made. “What else did they teach ye in the whorehouse?”

“Do you want me to show you?”

The wind intensified as Jamie moved himself over Claire, slipping between her legs as the two reached for each other. The swirling air of the room surrounding them in discrete bursts of heat as they came together for the first time.

Claire tensed and relaxed, the slight twinge of pain causing her to clench for only a moment before Jamie’s careful motions calmed her.

“Aye, Claire. Show me.”

Anticipation filled the room as she twisted her hips, causing him to roll underneath her. The creek of the floorboards joining the sound of the crackling fire and Jamie’s short, sharp groans as Claire settled herself over him.

She held herself steady for just a moment, watching as he rolled his shoulders and relaxed against the uneven boards.

Without warning Claire dipped her head and took his nipple in her mouth, gently nipping against Jamie’s sensitive flesh as she began to move her hips. Steady at first, she brought herself up and over him, and then slowly back down, using her teeth to bite small incisions in his flesh. Jamie writhed beneath her, the joint sensations causing bolts of salacity to rip through him. His head tipped back, banging against the wood as he let out an almighty gasp.

Claire smiled, the slip of his skin between her teeth reddening at her ministrations. Sitting back up straight, she traced the marks she’d made with the tips of her fingers whilst quickening the movement of her hips. Faster but with shallower thrusts she rose and fell in a more succinct rhythm now, running one hand along his chest and then up and along her own.

Jamie was lost, a clouded lustful haze swirled around him as Claire rolled her hips against his over and over in a punishing rhythm.

His hands dug into her delicate skin.

She’d have bruises come morning.

Driven solely by a waton need that rose within him, he pushed himself up a wee bit, leaning forward to take her breast under his tongue, mimicking the motions she’d made on his flesh only moments before. Gently he used his teeth, massaging the area with his tongue directly afterwards. He did this over and over, concentrating on the steady build of passion that started in his toes and worked its way through the very marrow of his bones to the tips of his fingers.

Claire felt the air in the room change, she felt the same clash of need wash through her and her motions stuttered just for a second. Gripping the thick curls at the base of his head, she pulled Jamie back and moulded her lips against his.

Their tongues battled in time with their bodies as Claire faltered and shook. Her legs gave way and Jamie had to hold onto her waist to stop them from both falling sideways.

As carefully as he was able in his heightened state he rolled her beneath him and continued to move slowly over her.

Claire lay her hand against Jamie’s rough cheek now, her legs wrapping tightly around his thighs as he took back control.

“I dinna ken a woman could…” he moaned, his chest shuddering as all of the muscles in his body tensed and released. Leaning his head down, he rested his forehead against hers, the sweet bursts of her breath intoxicating him as he let the blackness take him.

“Neither did I –*before*.” She whispered back, clinging to him as he lurched once more and flopped against her.

“Ah Dhia, I do love ye, Claire.” He panted against her damp chest, sliding himself to the side and gathering her up against his chest.

“I know, Jamie. As do I. Just sleep now, we have time.”

Lightning flashed, only a dim glow on the horizon now as the darkness of night began to fade. The sea calmed, and stilled, the faint bilow of the tiny waves carrying on the wind as the air cleared.

Inside, Jamie and Claire kissed softly, the sounds of their lips meeting mirroring the lapping of the tide against the rocks.

Now, no matter what happened beyond the new day, Claire had something of Jamie nobody could take from her.


The wait was killing her.

Standing at the window daily, she watched for any signs of Jamie or Murtagh. Still, after two weeks there was no sight of either of them.

Claire was growing impatient.

She’d done as he’d asked. She’d returned to Sandringham’s French estate after their passionate rendezvous. She hadn’t said a word to anyone, even Mary who was her most trusted friend and companion.

The clock on the mantle taunted her, ticking by the seconds with loud clicks that seemed to reverberate through the floor and up into her bones.

Once was not enough.

She needed him again.

She ached for him in a way she hadn’t known possible.

“Mistress Claire,” the maid called, poking her head through a gap in the door, “you are required in the sitting room, merci.”

Her heart raced. This couldn’t be good.

Gathering her wits, Claire marched through the large manor.

“Ah, my dear, there you are.” The Duke crooned, beaconing for her to enter as she lingered by the doorway. “I’ve some brilliant news, for both you and Mary.”

The smile that tugged at his lips scared her and she sat in on the settle as she awaited his news.

“We are to go back to England!” He seemed pleased, bouncing on his toes as he imparted the news. “I’ve done all I can here, Mary is to be wed and shortly, so will you.” Sandringham’s eyes narrowed as he said the words.

Claire had to fight to keep her face from revealing the horror that filled her head to toe.

“You needn’t worry, Claire. You will be well cared for, I assure you. Now, I suggest you ready yourself. We leave early tomorrow.” And with a flick of his wrist, he dismissed her.

The halls seemed to swallow her whole as she slunk back to her rooms. Passing Mary’s quarters, she didn’t even stop to speak to her adopted sister, too shaken by the news.

The words *’early tomorrow’* rang in her ears, mingling with thoughts of dread at having to return, alone, to an unknown future.

Remembering her time in London, Claire closed to the door to her suite and fell, softly, against the hard wood, sliding down until her bottom rested against the floor. Sobs wracked her body as she tried hard to stem the tears, and failed.

Her stomach lurched, and she had to make a quick dash to the bedpan as she retched loudly into the basin.

A prisoner once more, she fell into an uneasy sleep, her arms wrapped around the cold porcelain in the hopes that it might anchor her to the earth. Dreams of Jamie invaded her subconscious, and silently, her mind filled with as much hope as she was able to muster. She prayed that he would still come for her, not allowing the hopelessness to take over.

Morning came, and with it the uneasy promise of a return across the sea. Sandringham had them up at dawn, dressed and ready to leave.

Mary stood by Claire, holding her hand as if she had automatically known she’d needed the support. Luckily they were to ride alone; Claire wouldn’t be forced to make false niceties with her godfather.

“It’ll be alright, sister Claire,” Mary began, the moment the carriage began to move, “you still have me, and soon you’ll have a husband. Aren’t you excited?”

Instantly, Claire regretted not being more open with Mary. If there was anyone she could trust, it was her.

“I’ve fallen in love, Mary.”

Her adopted sister gasped and dropped her crocheted hankie onto the mucky floor. “In –love? How?” She blurted, trying desperately to think of a time when herself and Claire had been parted. “Oh my; you don’t mean…?” Mary held her, now empty, hand to her chest, recalling one such moment in detailed clarity.

“Yes.” Claire whispered, tears falling once more before she hastily wiped them away.

“But he’s a criminal, Claire. A wanted man! Wasn’t he a –brute?”

Claire scoffed and Mary’s innocence.

“They say the Scot’s are a barbaric nation. Didn’t he *murder* someone?”

“No, Mary. I don’t believe he did.” Claire shook her head, causing a random curl to fall from her cap. “He isn’t any of those things. He’s kind and gentle, –loving…”

“Claire!” Mary interrupted with some force, shocking Claire into silence. “Did he –seduce– you?”

A startling pinkish blush covered Claire’s cheeks as she licked her dry lips and shook her head again. “No, in fact, Mary, I seduced *him*.”

Before she could divulge anymore, the carriage came to an abrupt halt. The sudden stop causing Mary and Claire to lurch in their seats.

Claire’s heart boomed loudly in her chest, and before she’d given any thought to her actions she’d grabbed Mary’s hand and kissed it softly. “I have to go, sister. I love you, remember that. But I cannot marry another. I love him too much to do that. Please,” her free hand reached for the door, eager to be away, “don’t tell them which way I’ve gone, I beg of you.”

Mary nodded, muttering, “I love you, sister, please be careful…” as the door opened and Claire rushed off into the dense forest beyond.

Paying no mind to the direct she was going, Claire darted here and there, trying her best not to leave a trail in her wake lest anyone follow her. Green and brown whooshed around her as she fled, the damp scent of the woods making her giddy.

Silence surrounded her as she stopped, hiding herself behind a rather large trunk. She peeked out from behind it, glancing through the thick underbrush at the direction she’d appeared from.

Nothing.

Birds began to chirp again, and she could hear a tiny rattle in the distance as she assumed the carriages continued on in the direction of the port. If the Duke hadn’t stopped to check on her and Mary, he might not discover her missing for another couple of hours yet.

Her heart lightened at the prospect, and she turned, desperate to find her way free of the forest.

Two arms grabbed her from behind with such force that it knocked the wind from her. A large hand covered her mouth as she struggled and fought with her captor. Roving groups of thieves and bandits had been known to hide in the bushes, waiting for bypassers to harass. But she hadn’t contemplated this as she’d escaped, filled only with the intense desire to be free of her shackles to the Duke.

Her legs flailed and she called out as best she could, a muffled cry for help as the mystery arms pulled her tighter. Clenching her eyes shut tight, Claire began to twist in attempt to squirm her way free.

Seas! A ghràdh!” The Scots lilt finally penetrated her haze, causing her heart to slow and her breathing to calm. “It’s me, it’s Jamie. Dinna call out, alright?”

Claire nodded, her head hitting his chest as she did so.

As soon as he let her go she turned, impatience overwhelming her.

He looked so tired, the bags beneath his eyes prominent. All anger left her, and the tirade she was about to unleash dissipated with the sudden gust of wind.

“I didn’t think you were coming.” She finally murmured, letting relief fill her.

“I couldna get to ye, sassenach. There were armed guards surrounding the house. Every inch of it covered. I didna think I’d be much use to ye wi’ bullet holes, aye?” He quipped, trying to make light of the situation.

Taking hold of his hands and standing back, Claire turned to look back through the trees, her eyes narrowing. “He knew, didn’t he? About me and you. That’s why he wanted us home, to England.”

She turned back just in time to see Jamie nodding. “Aye, I think he did, Claire. But we dinna need to fash ourselves about it now. Let me see us safe, alright?”

“Yes, Jamie,” she whispered, lifting herself up on her toes to kiss him softly, “take me home, please.”

The forest seemed to bend and twist as the pair wrapped their arms around the other and turned, heading off away from the path. The trees masking any trace of their presence as soon as they’d disappeared from sight.

“I love ye, Claire. I promise, I would ne’er have left ye. I swear.” Jamie whispered as they faded away, far from prying eyes. “I will *always* come for ye.”

Fin.

Fanfiction - Sirius Supernova (Constellations series)

I was completely honest when I said that for me the Sirius story was done after The Second Sighting of Sirius. I was happy with it. But the response to that particular ficlet was just overwhelming, as were the people asking for a sequel. So I thought “Yeah, someday, far far away from now, I’ll maybe writing something more”. I had other things I wanted to write first. But as we know, the fanfiction writer plans and the muse laughs. 

This is the end of the story. I hope you won’t live to regret asking for it. It contains feels. It will stay inside the Constellations series because…well, you’ll understand why. I do love you guys, so…see you on the other side.

Fanfiction list

Sirius Supernova

“So, do ye intend to wake up the bairns?” Jamie panted in her ear, watching fascinated as she melted underneath him.

“And whose fault do you think that is?” She replied eventually, opening one eye, a blissful smile frozen on her lips.

“As I recall it, ye were there as well, Sassenach.” He brushed her naked hip with his fingers, rolling to lie next to her on his back.

“To be completely fair…” Claire brushed the ruddy hairs on his chest. “You did most of the heavy work.”

He snorted.

“Always a pleasure to serve ye, Sassenach.”

“Oh, so you are under my command, is it?” She said playfully, lightly biting one of his nipples. He yelped. “To do as I wish?”

He cocked an eyebrow, a lazy and somewhat smug smile dawning in his mouth.

“Aye. Give me five minutes and I’ll show ye.” His hand cupped her breast. “I might even foresee some things ye never thought ye desired.”

“Hmmm.” She moaned softly, as his skilled fingers stroked her tender nipples. “I’m intrigued. But you are an old man now, Fraser. I think you may need more than five minutes.”

“Dinna hear ye complaining of my auld age just ten minutes ago, when I was on my knees between yer legs.” He gave her a lopsided smile, making her blush.

“I’ll say this.” She caressed his flaming hair, still barely touched by the passing years. “You are still very flexible for a forty year old.”

They kissed, time flowing around them, immersed in a bubble where their connection was the only existing thing.

“I presume this was my birthday present?” He eventually asked, peeking to the scandalous lingerie on the floor beneath the bed.

“Yes, it was.” She entwined her fingers with his. “Not sure you enjoyed it enough, though. You unwrapped it pretty quickly.”

“Dinna fash, Tousled Sheep.” He traced her full bottom lip with his finger. “That will show ye just how much I loved it. I really did.”

“Good.” She said, satisfied. “I’m expecting something equally astounding on my next birthday.”

“What’s wrong with my letters?” He asked indignantly, slowly massaging her shoulder. “I thought ye liked them!”

“I do.” She hurried to kiss him for comfort. “I expect by the time we are eighty there won’t be enough space in the house to keep them. But I do love them, Jamie. They tell our story. I wouldn’t trade them for all the diamonds and perfumes in the world.”

“Maybe I can write something more creative the next time.” Jamie said, while his hand travelled along the slopes of her body. “And we can reenact it afterwards. Ye ken, when the kids are asleep.”

“Make sure you hide that one well enough.” She laughed. “We wouldn’t want another incident with the children asking us difficult questions. Faith already knows enough as it is.”

“Hmpf.” He made a noise with his throat, Scottish to the bone. “Perhaps I’ll write it in the Gaedlig, then.”

Jamie’s touch was becoming more difficult to ignore, as he applied all his considerable enthusiasm.

“It’s quite the risk.” Claire said, her voice caught in her throat. “You know I’m terrible at it. If you ask me to kiss your navel I’ll probably end up sucking your big toe, or something.”

“Will ye ever learn to speak the Gaedlig?” He asked, looking intently at her, as she straddled him.

“I already know how to say the only thing that matters, really.” She smiled at him, the fading light glowing around her, as she made her body home to him again. “Tha gaol agam ort.”

“Jamie.”

He heard her moan his name, as she had then, in lust. He had always loved to watch her lose herself at the very end, and the noises that she made when she surrendered to him.

“Jamie.” She repeated, calling him.

But this was different. No pleasure or elation in her voice. There wasn’t a trace of the breathless laugh that usually colored her voice. No tenderness.

Pain.

He came awake instantly, the dream of a memory bursting like a soap bubble, his body mimicking the impact of falling. He rolled over in bed, searching for his wife. She had her eyes closed and strained, her breathing coming fast and laboriously.

“What is it, mo nighean airgead?”

“It hurts.” She whispered, a tear sliding down her cheek. “My chest.”

“Did ye take yer medication?” He asked anxiously, groping to hold her hand. She nodded affirmatively in reply. “How bad is it?”

“Bad.” Claire answered shortly.

Her heart condition was not a novelty. It had started when she turned sixty – first she would get tired after a long walk, humorously calling herself “An old hag”. Then she became fatigued after climbing the stairs to the house. Her lips became blue as wild blackberries, her beautiful eyes always surrounded by dark circles. Eventually, even the short distance between their room and the kitchen seemed like a challenge, enough to leave her panting and her chest constricted in pain.

The doctor had been clear – she had congestive heart failure. Even with a rigorous regime of medication and tight vigilance, the prognosis was daunting.

But she remained good humored and calm, tolerating Jamie’s concern and gentle prodding. He almost never left her side, always available to fulfill her every need. He nursed and cherished her with a care that left her smiling, speechless.

“Do ye want me to call the ambulance?” He questioned, trying to access her breathing.

“No.” She said, slowly, shaking her head. Their eyes locked and Jamie saw only tenderness there. Tranquility. Love. “I want to be here. With you.”

“But Sassenach…” He tried to say, squeezing her hand.

“Jamie…” Claire sighed, closing her eyes again. And suddenly, as effortlessly as a feather scattered in the wind, she stopped breathing.

For a moment Jamie had no language. No way to articulate the void that crushed every sense and rational thought.

It was beyond loss – it was pain, cursing through his body, demanding to be felt. Grief roared on, like a storm that battered him with mighty winds that he couldn’t escape. It was unbearable.

The pain receded momentarily, like a wave in low tide, only so he could be plunged into a whirl of memories. A kiss stolen while she slept, her body naked in the dim light of their room. The look on her face as she had called him “Boy”. Claire running in a beach, laughing. Her belly swollen with their first child. The white dress she wore at their wedding. The kiss he gave her that first night together, which he had craved for years – a perfect kiss, that would last a lifetime. Dear Jamie. The stack of letters tied with a white ribbon in the cherry-wood box. Her body so close to his under a tree in the Highlands. Tousled sheep. “Tha gaol agam ort.”

“Claire.” He cried out, the word escaping his brutalized soul. But he had no breath to shout it, as he would have; he gasped it out, tentatively touching her cheek. “Claire.”

Claire, the keeper of his heart since he was a boy, had gone where he could not reach her. She ended; and nothing else could ever begin.

Jamie had no wish to be in a world empty of her. No desire to prolong a life where she was not walking by his side. That her heart – so loving and fully committed – had betrayed her so, seemed like the utmost injustice.

He knew there were paths to death inside oneself - usually forgotten after birth, when we came into this world crying in joy or regret – he had felt them, so many years ago, during the war. A mechanism to self-destruction, built to preserve the mind in the darkest places. Yes, there had been times when he had felt tempted to follow them through and let go of fear and degradation.

But Claire was his living flame. Had been then; and had stayed that way for the best part of forty years together. She had held on to him and prevented his end, when life itself seemed pointless.

She was gone.

He could still feel it, though – the soft burning of the flame inside him, fed not by her presence, but by the memories of a lifetime together. It would be so easy to smother it, to blow it out and go gently into the unknown.

Jamie was afraid. Not of death – he had no fear of pain and had faith enough to believe something else followed this existence. What he feared was eternal separation. Oblivion. That his memories of Claire would be erased in the afterlife. Doomed to never meet again the person that set his fire ablaze. He had no interest in lonesome eternity.

Could he carry on for a time without her? Delay the expected reunion out of fear?

He looked at the ceiling, watching the shadows of the trees outside dancing there. Solace deserted him. He thought of their children, how they would feel with them gone – but they were fully grown now and raised right. Claire’s absence was just greater than anyone’s presence.

No, he couldn’t do this. To carry on. He must be reunited with her. Half a heart couldn’t make for an acceptable life, to someone who knew what it felt like to be whole.

Her hands were cold now, warmth slipping away, like his heart had slipped away with her. He looked at her and saw all the women he had loved – the girl, the woman, the healer, the lover, the friend, the mother, the companion. He touched the streaks of silver hair and felt the echo of life still there; caressed her lips and heard her crystalline laugh; kissed her closed eyes and saw the whiskey that always made him drunk in love.

Jamie softly kissed her sweet mouth and nuzzled her curly hair one final time. His arms embraced her body, sheltering her once more.

He closed his eyes, finally seeking her. The flame gone out.

His heart stopped beating.

What he saw then was not what he expected.

They were lying together in a hill under the stars, their hands almost touching. She was smiling and his heart soared seeing her lips so alive again. She was different somehow – young again, her brown hair combed in a slightly different way, a scar in her forearm that he knew nothing of -, but still her in all the ways that mattered.

Jamie heard the distant whispers of their voices, far away enough that he couldn’t understand their words. But they spoke the language of the heart – and for that he needed no words to comprehend.

Their lips were almost touching now. Stars kept falling from the sky above, heedless of the creation of a supernova between them.

And Jamie knew he would always find his way back to her.

5

Frozen In Time: Michigan lighthouses transformed into stunning giant icicles after being frozen solid by storm

These frozen lighthouses in Michigan could easily be mistaken for a scene from the disaster movie The Day After Tomorrow.

Standing in temperatures well below freezing, the 30ft structures have been transformed into giant icicles.

These stunning photographs were captured by American photographer Thomas Zakowski, 56, on a trip to two cities in Michigan after a storm battered the state

Mr. Zakowski, from South Bend, Indiana, said, ‘The lighthouses were frozen solid by the waves that came crashing down against the pier.’

'What made the photograph of one of them so interesting was the fact that the storm was so intense it uplifted the anchors of the scaffolding which had been left there after painting.’

'It looks like a stairway in many ways and added a quality to the scene you will never see again.’

Every year, Thomas makes the trip to St Joseph and South Haven, both cities in Michigan, after a big storm to capture the resulting scenes.

He said, 'Depending on the year, the lighthouses can remain freezing for over a month, but it all depends on the weather.

'Every year it’s different, but it’s an event I look forward to very much. To get there was a little tricky, as first you have to make your way out on the pier.

'It’s like walking on an ice skating rink and at one point I have to duck walk past the first building in order to safely get to what I call the prize.

'Even though my photographs attract a lot of positive attention, that’s not the main reason why I do it. I simply make the trek out there because the particular area fascinates me.’

More than half of the continental U.S. was in the grip of a 'polar vortex’ that has sent temperatures plunging to their coldest level in nearly 20 years.

As many as 140 million Americans are bracing themselves for dangerously cold start to the week, with some cities expecting temperatures of between -30º C to -50º C.

source