sure show. let's just get the heartbreak out of the way right off the bat. ;~;

All that Jazz - Sirius Black x Reader (smut)

[Request: Hi could I request a Sirius imagine where reader and Sirius have an argument and like hanging out with the Marauders becomes awkward as the two make sarcastic remarks and stuff. But after a few days there’s too much tension and make up smut (quite rough) but the Marauders walk in and are like ‘well I guess you guys made up then’ xxx
Warnings: SMUT/ kink/ my English/not that great? Idk!
I don’t own the gifs/ Credits to their original owners. Also, thank you @ra-veela-claw  for the gentle push!
Thank you for requesting!]
Masterlist 
Requests are open!


You were struggling to study and remain calm at the same time because, in all honesty, all you wanted to do was flip the damn table over and burn your notes. It was soul sucking. Merlin knows how long you have been studying. You have been studying for hours upon hours. You weren’t that studious usually and you would prefer to be with your boyfriend but alas! N.E.W.T.S. 

“You’ve been studying all the day. And yesterday. And the day before. I missed you” Sirius said while he played with a strand of your hair affectionately
“I know, love. I just need to study for the exams. It’s not like I can fail” you said while you tucked the strand he was playing with behind your ear. He was pouting.
“Come on! Let’s do something fun! I feel abandoned” he murmured while he started pecking your neck. You let out a heavy breath. You can’t give up now. It’s only one more chapter after all!
“Cut it out Siri” you pulled away from his kisses. You wouldn’t be able to resist him any longer if he kept doing that.
“Jeez, woman!” he said mocking you. You really didn’t need that kind of attitude right now.
“Stop it! I need to study. You may not care about your future, but I do. So leave me the fuck alone!” you snapped at him. You weren’t really that mad but it came out that way. Truth is, you were bottling things up. Like how he didn’t care about the exams or anything, that is. He seemed to be so laid back and chilled out when you were studying your ass off and still- you hadn’t even finished one book.
“What the fuck is wrong with you?” he spat cruelly at you, causing your mind to shut down. With you? What was wrong with him?
“I am not the one who doesn’t give a flying fuck about anything. I want to do something with my life. I don’t want to waste it away because I was so stupid to throw every chance out of the window. I have goals and aspirations”. You were yelling at him by now. You just didn’t understand how someone could throw his life away to have fun. Fun. How fun will it be when he can’t even find a job?
“Screw this” he yelled at you, venom spreading through his words into your blood. He just stood up and left. And took all of the air with him. For a while, you felt numb and you tried to regain focus. Nothing seemed to work and soon tears were streaming down your face, sobs echoing around you, silent at first, deafening after a while.
You grabbed the books and threw them at the wall while ripping your notes apart and creating a chaos.  
Great.
Lily marched in. Your legs gave away and you crashed the floor.
Perfect.

Dinner was… Heartbreaking. You were sitting alongside the girls. They were talking about the next Hogsmeade trip and how beneficial a day off would be. You wouldn’t dare to look up because he was sitting there with his friends, laughing and girls were right beside him. Too many girls. Not you. You were mad and sad and mad. You literally wanted to scream at them that he was yours… but was he? The only thing you wanted to do after the argument was to apologize to him because you just didn’t mean it. You didn’t want to yell at him. He wasn’t the problem. The exam thing was just too overwhelming and you… Oh, great you thought to yourself. Here they come. They sat right across you. You had to keep your posture.
“Lily-pad! How is it you look so ravishing every day?” James flirted. Lily just rolled her eyes and offered him a forced smile.
“We are already dating James” she simply stated. Yeah, like that would do it. The guy never stopped flirting with her.
“At least she isn’t screwing you over studying”. He didn’t. Your mouth agape. Fine, two can play this game.
“I’m not listening, but keep talking. I enjoy the way your voice makes my ears bleed” you said sarcastically, making eye contact with him for the first time. He raised an eyebrow.
“I’d agree with you but then we’d both be wrong” he returned. You felt like punching him straight in the face.
“Are you always this retarded or are you making a special effort today?”. Who would have guessed that you could go this cocky?
“If it looks like I give a damn, please tell me. I don’t want to give off the wrong impression” he continued. You rose from your seat. You wanted to scream and punch and kick the hell out of him.
“I’d insult you, but the sad truth is that you wouldn’t understand and if I tried to explain it to you, your brain might implode from information overload” you spat at him. You were glaring daggers at each other. Every student was staring at you two. Your friends were trying to distract you from each other but every attempt failed.
“Why are you here?” he growled. You faked an innocent smile and batted your eyelashes.
“Wow, you sound better with your mouth closed” you answered too sweetly. You walked away from your friends and made your way towards the exit. What you couldn’t realize though was that even though you were furious at him, you actually found him so damn hot.

The same scene was playing on repeat. Every time you two were in the same room, doing as much as breathing the same air, the world would stop spinning and sarcastic, mean even, remarks would be exchanged. Your friends tried to reason both of you but nothing could change the fact that he was an ass to you and that you were an ass to him.
You were currently about to enter their room because Lily made you the messenger. She wanted you to tell James to meet her in the Astronomy Tower. You were fuming at your friend but you did owe her that much.
When you did enter the room, however, James wasn’t there. In fact, no one was there but the very person you wanted to slap. He was shirtless. That was a sight that never failed to make you blush. He was gorgeous and he knew it.
“You’re not that lucky and I’m not that desperate!” he exclaimed. But you’ve had enough. More than enough.
“Yes. Yes, you are” you whispered, your voice stripped from any sarcasm. It was the truth. It had been one week and two days since this crazy thing had begun. You haven’t touched each other for what seemed like, forever. You’d lie if you said that you didn’t miss his hands on your body, his lips on your face.
You took a few steps closer. You could feel the heat that his body radiated.
“And Merlin knows, I am” you breathed out, inches away. Your hot breath fell on his lips, sending shivers down his spine.
[SMUT UNDER THE CUT]  

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Destruction Of A Muse [Part 4] (M)

Originally posted by bangtannoonas

[Part 1] - [Part 2] - [Part 3]

Warnings: Mentions of violence, drug use, blood mentions, smut

“I swear I didn’t know, Y/N.” Namjoon muttered, one hand rested on your knee as he stared at you with large, sympathetic eyes. “If I did, I would have said something.”

You weren’t looking at him, your eyes were pointed towards the leaves of the tree that you and Yoongi had stood under together the day he came to pick you up, watching as they danced in the light breeze. Somehow, they looked completely different now, as if you’d never seen them at all. You blinked, and in that millisecond where your vision was drowned out in blackness, you saw him; droplets of red falling from his nose and staining his pale skin. 

There was no way you could have known, but still, you felt that you should have known.

“I don’t understand.” You frowned, repeating the sentence that you’d spoken over and over for the last half hour.

Namjoon’s fingers lightly squeezed around your knee, his head bobbing in a slow gesture of understanding. “I know.”

“No, I mean–” You trailed off, your thoughts tangling together and getting lost on the tip of your tongue. “He’s brilliant, Namjoon. He’s so talented. I don’t understand.”

His lips pressed into a line, causing the faint indentation of dimples to show up on his cheeks. “Sometimes it comes with the lifestyle, Y/N.”

“You don’t do it.” You snapped back, an edge to your tone.

“Doesn’t mean I haven’t been offered.” Namjoon sighed, and then snapped his mouth closed, second-guessing what he’d just said and how you’d take it.

“You told me he was a bad guy.” You chewed on the sensitive skin on the inside of your lip, already gnawed and sore from hours of abuse. “If you didn’t know he was doing that stuff, what made him bad?”

One shoulder raised in a slight shrug. “He has a hard time getting along with people. He’s a loner with a bad attitude.”

Defensiveness swelled within you and you turned your head to face your friend, your eyes narrowing. “You know nothing about him, do you?”

His eyebrows shot up, shocked at your outburst. “I’ve been working with him for three years, Y/N. I see him almost every day.”

“Have you ever tried to talk to him? Tried to get to know him?”

“You can tell enough about someone by watching them.” He muttered and you scoffed, batting his hand off of you and pushing yourself off the ground, dusting bits of grass and dirt off of the backs of your thighs.

“I can’t believe you, Namjoon.” You huffed, tugging the strap of your bag over your shoulder. “If you knew the kind of person he really was, maybe you could understand how heartbreaking it is to know he’s risking throwing everything he’s gained away.”

Namjoon planted his hands on the ground, poised to push himself up as well, but you didn’t give him the opportunity. You turned your back to him, walking in whichever direction your legs deemed as the right one as you lifted your hand in a half-hearted wave. You were fuming; teeth clenched together with the effort of soothing your sense of protectiveness. But on the inside, in the deepest parts of your chest, you still felt the sharp sting of heartache. If you drowned out the background noise of birds chirping and students chattering, you could hear the sound of his voice demanding you to leave, to get out.

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Dirty Laundry - Pietro Maximoff x (f)Reader (March Song Challenge)

Words: 1171
Pairing: Pietro Maximoff x (f)Reader
Featuring: Natasha Romanoff, Tony Stark, Wanda Maximoff
Warnings: probably swearing i dont remember, ANGST, talk of kinda cheating, anger
Summary: Based off of the song and music video, Dirty Laundry by All Time Low, bad things have happened in your relationship with the silver speedster, Pietro Maximoff. This causes the two of you to break up, one more affected than the other, and the aftermath of the entire ordeal.
Authors Note: In the music video Alex is surrounded by a few different people. One being a girl in a wedding dress angerily ruining his clothes, as if to show there was a relationship problem. Hence, where I got the idea for this. The lyrics are kind of strange, so I was more inspired by the video. It’s a great song, though xD

Ao3

What is this? Jadyn’s Challenge

Challenge Masterlist. Masterlist.


“I don’t think I’ll be okay for a while!” You shouted, tears pouring out of your eyes. “And it’s insane to ask that of me! He can’t commit to anything, what does that make me worth?” You were moving your hands around, throwing all the clothes out of your closet on the floor with your telekinetic powers. “Nothing will ever be the same!” You yelled, making the lame on your bedside table fall off.

“(Y/N),” Natasha walked into your bedroom. “People make mistakes.”

You sat on your bed, your hands covering your eyes and tear stained cheeks. “I know, but some mistakes are unforgivable.”

“What really happened, (Y/N)?” Natasha asked, and you thought about what made you react in such a horrible way.

You and Pietro wanted to make it official, and he proposed just last week. The only person who knew was Wanda, for multiple reasons. But you also hadn’t told anyone after it happened, you wanted to make it special to tell the rest of the team that you and Pietro were engaged.

But when going out to drink with him, you noticed him flirting with at least three other women there.

“He has no control!” You yelled to Natasha, after giving her the quick version of the story.

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Not His Fault

Originally posted by superbintentions


Clark Kent x Reader

Request: Reader and Clark are dating, she is also part of the Justice League. Metallo manipulates Superman, causing him to against the League, he almost hurts reader but before he can, he stops. Someone questions if they can trust Clark. 

Word Count: 2122


Streets were covered in chaos; civilians were running to take cover while two of the Justice League members took care of the situation. Metallo was robbing banks while he also caused a mass destruction of buildings. He had no feelings for any life form, except for his. He was too strong for majority of the League, so they decided that the first ones that will go into the city would be Superman and Wonder Woman. They were to distract him and make him weak before any of the other members joined in.

Superman soon realized that he could not touch this cyborg, he would have to stay a distance if he did not want to be weakened by the kryptonite that this man had on him. Wonder Woman was able to get close to him while Superman was able to use his laser vision. Soon the two became in unison, she hurdle the man in every direction while Superman shot at him with fiery red. She was about to throw a punch but before she could, a burst of energy came out of the blue. Shoving her and everyone back that was in reach. It was a soft magnifying red, it felt warm to everyone but to him it felt like he was burning and slowly losing his mind.

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anonymous asked:

So what are your top five?

This was really, really hard and I cheated at a lot and the number of fic I still had to leave out is heartbreaking. Basically you get two top sevens (in no particular order), one for WIP and one for completed.  I tried to limit myself to one per author (sort of successfully if you only look at one category at a time and ignore honorable mentions).

This is kind of long so the recs are under the cut:

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Reveling in Richonne

#28: The Dread (6x16)

While the cliffhanger was controversial, I really feel like, up until that moment, this finale was a pretty stellar episode of television.

The suspense, the build up, the tension, the road maze from hell. It was all almost too much for my heart to bare lol. By the time Negan got on the screen I couldn’t even look at the TV. I was so overwhelmed that someone I loved was about to go in a brutal and tragic way.

Now, Michonne was unseen and cooped up by the Saviors for most of the episode. Meanwhile, Rick was having the worst day of all time. The finale is called “Last Day on Earth” but it’s also legitimately the worst day on earth too. Like talk about a bad day, filled with mind games, and torment on every corner.

Bad days are expected in the apocalypse, even crazy days, but it seems like the moment where this day went from horrible to a downright nightmare for Rick was when he found Michonne’s hair on a walker.

First of all, what sick ignant Savior cut Michonne’s hair for this little visual demonstration!? Imma need him to stand up and get Lucilled real quick. 😂 But anyways, as Rick’s group faces this chain of walkers, Aaron notices that a walker has Michonne’s vest and hair on her. When they point this out to Rick, you can almost see the fight leave Rick’s eyes. Like he’s been pretty confident most of the episode but seeing this walker is when his demeanor changes.  

He just stops. You can see him visibly needing a moment to process that walkers have both Daryl and Michonne’s items on them. And then after the initial shock, he rips the locs off the walker and hacks the walker’s wrist as Saviors shoot at their feet. Y'all, I admit when I first saw this I was tempted to be salty, cuz I was like “The writers better not be trying to use this “wrist hack” to make Michonne seem even remotely similar to that Other-girl-I-don’t-know”. But then I took a deep breath and reminded myself “This is different, girl. Remember?" 😂.

And, honestly, I think the parallel shots of Rick hacking these wrists was done in order to emphasize how different Rick responds to seeing the other chick actually eaten, and then seeing just the suggestion that something bad has happened to Michonne. The level of shook is drastically different when it has to do with Michonne lol.

But anyway, this moment changed the game for Rick cuz now it wasn’t just a gut feeling that Michonne wasn’t safe it was a confirmation. I love that we get a fairly long moment to see that Rick still has those dreads in his hands when they’re back in the RV. Like he could have just dropped them, but he still has them, cuz any part of Michonne is a valuable part to him.

Can we also talk about the significance behind this visual of a white man holding the dreadlocks of his black wife on the highest rated television show? Like it was truly a great and unique image to behold. And what’s so cool is that, in this moment, that wasn’t a black girl’s piece of hair, it was just his wife’s piece of hair. And that’s all that mattered.

He looks so shook and so broken and you can tell it’s taking everything in him to not lose it. I promise I’m not trying to be over dramatic lol, it was just so visibly clear that seeing her hair really messed him up. Like he’s not fully there in that RV as the others continue to strategize. It was significant to see Rick in this state over Michonne because it illustrated just how much he cares, that he could need an actual moment to just reel over this, despite all the other craziness going on.

I really think that finding that hair was the Saviors most effective way of breaking him on those roads. They didn’t even need to do all that extra stuff cuz this did the trick. Like they can pull that intimidation stuff all day and he’d be mostly unbothered but alluding to messing with TF is another story. And specifically, alluding to having hurt or taken the love of his life is really what nearly took him out. But being a fighter, he found that little emergency bank of energy he needed to keep going. It’s sweet that, even when he slightly regroups and rejoins the conversation in the RV, he is still holding her hair. 

You can imagine how much Rick’s heart probably sank when Michonne was pulled out of that van during the lineup. Like if there’s three people Rick feels completely obligated to protect it’s; Carl, Judith, and Michonne. And now here two of them are, kneeling right with him, completely defenseless. I feel like his reaction when he saw Michonne pulled out of the van had to do with part of him being relieved that she’s not dead, and then another part that dreads that she’s here and captured and knowing they’re about to go through something horrible together. 

There was a part of me that was greedy at first and wanted R&M to have a more obvious noticing of one another during this lineup scene, but in the end, I’m super glad it was subtle as it kept them protected. Imagine if a Savior had picked up on the fact that the leader of this group had a wife? After seeing what happens with other couples in this lineup…yeah Richonne needed to be subtle while in enemy territory. Especially since Rick had all eyes on him due to carrying the burden of being the leader. 

Rick was feeling a whole lot in this scene, but I also think about how Michonne must have been feeling. She has been stuck in this dark closed space, with no real clue of what’s going on out there, or how many people there are. All of a sudden, she hears these Weirdos start whistling like a Thug Choir and then she hears Simon talking menacingly in a way only Steven Ogg can (a great actor btw). And then she’s brought out and what does she see? Her husband, her son and her extended family all on their knees. That had to make her heart sink to the floor too. To know that your family is the reason for the whistling and they’re the ones these men were threatening. At that moment everyone in that lineup had to know this was about to be the worst night of their lives. 

As everything goes from bad to worse, it has to be so hard for both Rick and Michonne cuz they can’t protect everyone like they’ve so often done in the past. When Negan came out, I love that Michonne stayed looking at him like "I wish you would try me and my family”. 😂 I thought Negan was about to get “warning popped” right then and there if they hadn’t been so surrounded. 

I love that her and Carl and Abe were really the only ones sitting up straight and looking Negan in the eye. They were not impressed with this fool and they were like “He can catch my fade all day with his scarf-wearing behind.” Again, I was here for it. And, for the record, I do not fault Rick for being more vulnerable in the lineup. It makes a whole lot of sense. He had a lot to worry about and he felt responsible for this predicament, even though it wasn’t his fault. Plus, if he looked too defiant while Negan did his spiel things could have escalated with a quickness.

Everybody had really great performances in this episode. But let me tell you a little something about Andrew Lincoln…

I know so many people have already said this, but allow me to join you in saying; Andrew Lincoln has been deserving award recognition since season one, but the world-class acting this man did all throughout this 6x16 episode deserved all the Emmys and Golden Globes you could throw at him. This man is a brilliant talent and the heart of this show and that absolutely shined through in this episode. Seeing Rick, the man we’ve all come to know, and love, and trust, be so completely broken and helpless. The dread was overwhelming and so real. I mean, you genuinely felt everything he was feeling and Andrew Lincoln’s performance in this episode was unforgettable and A1 and something special to witness. Truly. 

Even in just these first twenty minutes of Negan I remember thinking, “Sure he’s a legit and intimidating threat, but his downfall is going to be not realizing the power of the Grimes family” Like one; the minute Negan started to take interest in Carl, all bets were off, and Rick had to speak out, cuz there is no amount of threatening that’s gonna allow you to try his son. And then Carl was ready to post up the entire time. And then Michonne’s challenging look. I was like “Negan, honey, a lot of people who try the Grimes boys end up on the sharp end of her sword and you next, boo. It might be seasons from now, but you are next if you don’t realize the power of this family." 

I felt for everyone in this lineup but especially Rick and Michonne cuz I know how wired they are to protect their family, and their son in particular. And it was heartbreaking because you could see them trying to compute some sort of solution and escape route. And then you can see them having to accept they’re just going to have to let what happens happen. And, man, did something devastating happen.

With Season 6 coming to a close, there was a lot to process overall, and especially with Richonne. Now that I was no longer general audience, for the first time, the hiatus would be a long one. I found myself constantly wanting to think about Richonne’s scenes and how beautiful their relationship was and I refused to entertain the idea that Michonne was the LV as I, like the rest of the world, wondered who got the bat. (I still know the dang order of the lineup lol). It was not going to be Michonne who got the bat, because I was certain we had a whole lot more Richonne coming our way in Season 7. 

It would be a while before I learned there was a name for my ever growing, internal, Richonne obsession but, whether I knew it or not, by the end of the season I was totally entranced by Richonne. I didn’t try to be. I was so not someone who would ever get caught up in romance and lovey dovey stuff, especially between a fictional couple (I promise you, I’m aware they are fictional lol😋). But this time I had no choice in the matter.

Their relationship was too beautiful, too authentic, the actors too talented, their coupling too meaningful, too special for me to not adore them. As I like to say; After 6B, I didn’t choose the Richonne life the Richonne life chose me lol. 😊 

And now Season 7 is where the real fun begins 😉😋

Originally posted by rick-rhymes

The strongest Talon: part 6

A/n: wow this was a long one! Hope you guys enjoyed the series.
**********

You watched the boys train in the cave and hoped that they would go along with your plan. You clutched your notebook, which had the messages, and walked over to Dick and Jason. You figured they could tell the other two a bit more discreetly than you would’ve been able to.

“Dick, Jay, could you guys look at this file? I’m trying to get back in the swing of things and I wanted to make sure the theory I have about the latest rash of robberies is right.” You said as you handed it to them.

Jason opened it up and they both began to read. Thank god that they had incredible poker faces. Otherwise, it would’ve been obvious something was wrong right off the bat.

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anonymous asked:

Can I request h/c's for the bots reacting to their sparklings first romantical heartbreak? Mtmte Rodimus, Swerve, Megatron and Cygate please!

( Melly’s Mod Notes: Not a problem, anon! This is such a cute prompt because family dynamics yessss. For this one I’ll be writing it as if the sparkling is a Cybertronian so I hope you don’t mind that bit! )


RODIMUS

✦ Rodimus comes back to the residence one day and hears the music blasting from his sparkling’s habsuite. It’s mixture of earth and Cybertronian songs but they all deal with the same theme: Heartbreak. Uh oh. He almost wants to contact Ratchet and Drift for help since they have more experience in this than him and stops himself before he makes the call. No, he decides with determination. He’s their sire. He’ll be there for them. He knocks on the door, asking them if they want to talk about what happened because did someone hurt their feelings? When they don’t answer him right off the bat or tell him to go away, he gets annoyed but pushes it aside and tells them okay, he understands. He’ll be in his office trying to get some work done if they’re ready to talk. They eventually are.

✦ Apparently his sparkling had confessed their love to their Amica Endura and got turned down by them. Their Amica was planning to initiate a Conjunx Ritus with someone else, having no idea about those feelings at all. Their friend tried to be gentle as possible when doing so and it only made them feel worse somehow. By the time they finish their story, they’re crying into their servos and Rodimus is doing his best to comfort them. He rubs their back and tries to give them encouragement, telling them that this will hurt them for a while and that’s it. A while. They’ll find another ‘bot out there for them. He’s somewhat successful in cheering them up, his sparkling is mostly glad for the fact they were able to approach their sire for this.

✦ Does his best to make them smile for the rest of the day after they’ve calmed down. He thinks showing them a good time will help out, remind them that the day won’t be merely defined by their loss and Rodimus does his best to pull out all the stops. Cracks jokes and quips to make them laugh. Tells them stories about his adventures when he was still a ‘bot named Hot Rod. Does the most ridiculous stunts and moves to impress  or annoy them them. Never once does he leave their side unless he’s asked to, wanting to show them that he’s there for them.

SWERVE

✦ He learns it pretty casually. Swerve and his sparkling share a strong bond so nothing is hidden from the other. When they come back from a day at the academy, they seek him out while he’s learning to mix new drinks for his bar. It isn’t long before the two have a conversation on what happened that they, the pair eager to swap gossip and laugh over silly stories. When he asks how their ‘lovebot’ is - that’s his nickname for his sparkling’s significant other - they let him know that they’re no longer seeing that ‘bot in question. Why? Oh they broke up today no big deal. Hey can you past them that glass of energon?

✦ He must have looked surprised because they look nervous all of the sudden and are quick to assure him that it was nothing dramatic. They weren’t being cheated on nor did they find out about this big dark secret their lovebot was hiding from them. It’s just… The chemistry between them was gone. Kisses weren’t as sweet and hugs weren’t as tender. The inside jokes between them were starting to become tedious and annoying. The couple talked it out and agreed the relationship ran its course. It’s best they saw others and remain friends before they began to resent the other.

✦ While they aren’t heartbroken, it’s clear they do feel a bit bummed out. Swerve is proud of how mature and levelheaded they were and decides they need to celebrate. (’Celebrate what? My first break up?’ ‘No no no no- Celebrate how levelheaded and mature you are! If that was Ratchet’s sparkling, I bet they would have thrown a wrench or something. Don’t tell him I said that about his kid by the way. Pretty sure he, like, put someone in the medbay for saying their fins were too big for their helm.’ ‘They are.’ ‘I know but shhhh.’) He happily drags them over to Swerve’s, giving them free drinks and telling the other regulars to make his bitlet feel like a star that night. The attention is overwhelming, emabrassingly so, and they’re happy all the while at how much effort he’s trying to make them feel special. They do need to draw a line when Swerve tries to chat up Nautica and Velocity, asking if their sparkling is seeing anyone recently. Sire no.

MEGATRON

✦ He’s picking them up from Macadam’s after he gets a message from them, simply requesting him to please please please pick them up if he has the time. Whatever he’s doing can wait. He heads on over to the bar, ignoring everyone around him as they give him space, glares, or both. All he can focus on is reaching his sparkling and he finds them soon enough: They’re waiting outside, leaning against a wall and trying their best to hide their broken optic from his sight. The first thought that comes to his mind is: Who did that? How dare they hurt them. He’s angry but anger is Cheeto Puffed by paternal concern when his sparkling notices he’s there and beeps out his name. They don’t call out. They beep and in the exact same way they used to when they were smaller and softer and less aware of the evils of the world around them. He’s by their side within seconds, drawing them into a hug and helping escort them home.

✦ During the walk back, he carefully asks what happened and does his best to not judge them. They explain to him that after a few rounds, their significant other brought up a subject and offended them pretty badly. Their argument escalated into a breakup which escalated into a fight and here they are. His heart sinks when he asks what the subject was and they don’t answer immediately. Him. It must have been him. He knows for a fact that he had been a… contentious subject for his sparkling’s other. His deeds are too infamous, his exploits too cruel for anyone to forget so easily even in peace time. He hates himself for ruining something that made his sparkling happy with his presence alone. He tells them as much while he apologies to them and is shocked (and happy) when they shake their helm. ‘You’re my sire. You’re a part of me. If they reject you than they reject me. Their loss.’

✦ The rest of the night, they spend time together. Reading poetry, doing reports, and anything else that involves the two of them working together. He’s gentle or tries to be gentle as he can be. He’s willing to tell them about the adventures he’s had when on the Lost Light, making them laugh with stories of Rodimus Stars and how he once walked in one Ultra Magnus dancing along to an earth song. Before he lets them go to recharge, he presents to them a gift: A rare edition work of Towards Peace. One that has a dedication to Terminus and to his future sparkling should he be ever given the chance to raise one as his own.

CYGATE

✦ The couple know something is up when their sparkling returns from their highly anticipated date with a crush of theirs and tries to sneak past their habsuite. They try to be sneaky and almost succeed in it too! If not for the fact Tailgate left his hoverboard lying around. The terrific crash outside has Tailgate and Cyclonus jumping out of their rooms, ready for a fight of their lives. Instead they see their sparkling scrambling to get up on the floor, swearing up a storm. (Cyclonus looks at Tailgate at this part and Tailgate tries to look innocent as possible.)

✦ Cyclonus manages to calm them down and Tailgate is the one who gets them to talk about what happened. They explain that the date had been awkward the entire time between the two. They really did want this date to work and tried their hardest to make it succeed! Except their personalities didn’t click and the conversations were boring and they found out their date’s opinions on very important subjects were polar opposites of theirs. They decided it’s better they stay as friends and ended the date short before anything else could go wrong. Their bitlet isn’t heartbroken, not really, but they’re obviously disappointed and embarrassed at how reality did not live up to their romantic expectations. They also knew how excited the pair were to hear about the date and didn’t want to disappoint them with this.

✦ Cyclonus does his best to assure them that they should not feel ashamed for this turning out the way it did. The fact they tried so hard is something they’re proud of alone. Tailgate agrees and is quick to initiate an emergency cuddle pile for the occassion. Right there and then on the floor. Neither Cyclonus nor their sparkling complain since it is nice to spend moments like these together. For the rest of the night, Tailgate will hug his sparkling and give them kisses and just increase his displays of affections by a lot to make up for the bad date. Cyclonus is more subtle when it comes to giving comfort. He stays be their side when they’re in the same room, saying nothing yet letting them know he’s there for them should they need to talk. If they ask he’ll be more than happy to sing for them.

Superficial Gayness, Queerbaiting, and Disappointment

I want to talk about something that’s been on my mind recently when it comes to LGBT+ characters in media, but more specifically, gay and lesbian characters and their portrayals. I’ve argued before about how members of the queer community are used to being disappointed when it comes to representation in media, and I think that statement can be a little confusing to people who haven’t experienced this disappointment. The reason for this is because on the surface, a majority of television and film no longer shies away from portraying gay characters. As such, it would seem as though queer viewers should be pleased with the more progressive direction society, and as a result, media that reflects society, is headed. And in a lot of ways, we are pleased. However, there is still reason to be disappointed in the way the queer community is represented in media, or rather, in the different ways we are not represented.

This all comes back to a term I’ve come up with when it comes to gay characters in media, that being “superficial gayness.” I think it’s important to define this term for a better understanding of my argument, but first allow me to tell you what it is not. Superficial gayness does not mean that these characters are faking being gay on the outside but are straight on the inside or anything of that sort, instead, it deals more with the characterization of these figures.

Take, for example, Cam and Mitchell from Modern Family. These two characters are featured on one of the most popular and progressive sitcoms of the past decade and have been important in desensitizing the viewing audience to gay individuals. This is all very important and I’m not trying to take away from that. However, take note of how they are characterized. Right off the bat they are identified as the gay couple, and their gayness is a large part of who they are in the context of the show. Sure, Mitchell’s character often subverts many of the stereotypes about how gay men act, but on a superficial level, they are “the gay couple in Modern Family.” Hence the term “superficial gayness.” In the eyes of the viewing audience, the fact that they are gay is essentially what makes up who they are in the context of the show. On a brief side note, let me make it clear that I am in no way trying to say it is wrong for someone’s sexuality to be a large part of who they are, rather, I am simply stating that when it comes to queer characters in media, the audience often sees them as simply “the gay person/people.”

Now we’re really getting into the meat of things, and I want to address the root of my argument, that being the disappointment members of the queer community often experience as a result of the superficial gayness we see when it comes to homosexual characters. The point I’m trying to get at is that so rarely do we see characters who simply turn out to be gay. That may be strange way to put it, but hear me out. It seems as though if the writers of a show intend for a character to be gay, that character’s sexuality is made apparent right from the start. This isn’t necessarily wrong, but what is wrong is the counterpoint of this, which is that if a character does not display this superficial gayness, then they will almost never turn out to be homosexual. Even worse than that is the queerbaiting that can often occur when it comes to these characters.

Let’s look at the BBC’s Sherlock for a more concrete example of this. (On a side note, I was hoping for a good F/F ship for my example for this part of the argument, but I wanted to stick with only information and characters that I am most knowledgeable about to better solidify my argument, and couldn’t find any good examples of lesbian pairings that really demonstrate this point very well.) In Sherlock, the titular character and his partner in fighting crime John Watson share a very close friendship. Immediately fans of the show fell in love with the idea of Holmes and Watson sharing a romantic relationship. However, take note of the fact that Watson directly states “I’m not gay,” early on in the show’s run. There is no superficial gayness, right from the start we are aware that Watson is heterosexual. That didn’t stop fans however, and as a result, Holmes and Watson are faced with more and more situations which call their sexualities into question as the show continues. This is intentional. The show’s writers are aware of the fan reaction to the idea of Sherlock and John being gay, and chose to feed into these interests, despite stating themselves that they have no intention of displaying a canon homosexual relationship. This is queerbaiting. And at the root of it, there is a lack of superficial gayness.

So, to wrap things up, let’s take a look at some shows that are doing things right, and some shows that have the potential to do so as well. First, there is The Legend of Korra. As most of you are probably aware, the show’s finale wrapped up with Korra and Asami together, followed by a confirmation from the show’s creators that yes, Korrasami is canon. What is so important to note about this situation is that the characters we see together at the end of The Legend of Korra are characters who lacked superficial gayness. They were not “the gay characters.” They were Korra and Asami, the protagonist and another important character along for the ride. Korra even dated Mako during the show’s run. However, whether it was due to fan interest or whether it was the intention all along, the two women eventually ended up together romantically. I cannot stress enough how important this is.

Another show I want to briefly make mention of that does this right is Steven Universe, if only because it’s just so damn good and portrays its characters so well. It isn’t until the end of the first season that we find out that Garnet is actually a fusion of two gems, Sapphire and Ruby, both identifying as female. Pearl’s love for Rose Quartz is revealed little by little, all coming to a head when she sings It’s Over, Isn’t It, and it’s heartbreaking. Even now, this late in the series, the foundations for a budding romance between Pearl and the mystery girl, and between Lapis Lazuli and Peridot, are being laid. But don’t forget that the show started as a goofy kid and some badass females beating up monsters together. They were never just “the gay characters.”

And now, finally, we can look at some shows that have so much opportunity to do things right, but which I am fearful will fail to do so. The disappointment and queerbaiting of past experiences make it difficult for me to get my hopes up when it comes to the possibility of these relationships becoming canon. First let’s look at one that at this point is all but canon; the relationship between Princess Bubblegum and Marceline in Adventure Time.

There really isn’t much to say about these two, and by that I mean there’s so much to say that at this point there’s no need to say any more. As far as I see it, the two are together. But a show can drop as many hints and as much subtext as it wants, to me, it isn’t enough until it is confirmed. I understand the struggles that producers have to face when it comes to acceptance across different countries, and the fact that they want to be accessible to as large an audience as possible. That being said, when it comes to Bubblegum and Marceline, their relationship has come so far that there’s no denying it anymore. However, I still have doubts. Doubts that arise from the fact that neither Bubblegum nor Marceline demonstrated superficial gayness from the start of the show. Could it all just be queerbaiting? Only time will tell, but the fear will always be at the back of my mind.

On the other hand, we have RWBY, a show produced by RoosterTeeth, and the pairing of Yang Xiao Long and Blake Belladonna. Just as with Bubbline, I believe there is no longer any excuse for these two not to be together, but for a different reason. With Bubbline, it seems as though the creators want it to happen, but due to global marketing, are uneasy about doing so. With Blake and Yang, or “Bumbleby,” it is quite the opposite. The majority of fans are in support of Bumbleby, and unlike Cartoon Network, RoosterTeeth has no reason to fear the backlash that would come from such a pairing, as their viewership comes largely from the internet community who are entirely open to the two being together. My hope is that they have the intention of eventually making Bumbleby canon, and right now the only delay is the slow burn of the narrative and setting things up for the two to eventually develop feelings of love for one another. But as I’ve stated before, the disappointments of the past make me fearful for the future, especially due to the fact that Blake and Yang not only didn’t demonstrate superficial gayness, but Blake has been shown to have some interest in a male character, Sun Wukong. Just as in the case of Bubbline, it will take time to find out the truth, but as RWBY heads into Volume 4, I find myself having severe doubts about the eventual possibility of a canon lesbian pairing.

So then, to wrap this up I just want to say that I hope shows like The Legend of Korra and Steven Universe have set an example for shows that have potential for powerful homosexual relationships. And I want to see queer representation in media moving more in a direction where a character’s sexuaity is not what defines them in the eyes of the audience. A character’s sexuality should not be the first thing that stands out about them, establish strong characters, and over time reveal those details. Otherwise we will remain locked in a cycle of superficial gayness, queerbaiting, and disappointment.

Thank you for reading.

grief is like the ocean

summary: some days are better than others. — shallura (ft. love, loss, and recovering)
also read on: ao3 // ffn

for @shallurasundays, prompt: home. sorry i’m so so so late but i just love this prompt so much. i just couldn’t live without doing it. this is also for @jazzzasaruss, who had requested allura meeting shiro’s family a long long time ago. i’ve finally come around to being able to write this. i hope you enjoy — and sorry again for the delay. 


“grief is like the ocean;
it comes on waves ebbing and flowing.
sometimes the water is calm,
and sometimes it is overwhelming.
all we can do is learn to swim.” — vicki harrison

.

She rests her head on his shoulder and brings her body close, sliding in against him between the sheets.

“Tell me about your father and your mother again,” she asks him.

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Reveling in Richonne

#87: The “I Can Lose You” (7x12)

So Michonne had basically just professed her love by telling Rick she can’t lose him. (Those “I love you’s are coming soon. I can just feel it 😋) And I remember being very curious to see how Rick would respond to her vulnerable declaration. And after I got over my initial saltiness his response was quite interesting and deep once I thought about it.

He starts by telling her, “You asked me what kind of life we had just surrendering.” and I love this for a lot of reasons.

One; I will always adore that he takes her every word to heart. Like literally ever since Michonne said “What kind of a life?” in 7x4 Rick has never stopped thinking about it. He brought it up with Aaron and he brings it up here. It just really confirms that everything she says sticks with him and really stays on his mind.

You know that knowing she was unhappy with that oppressive life has been one of the things most weighing on him. And he’s wanted to give her their life back ever since she said those words.

Like it makes me think about how Rick and Michonne both equally have this strong desire to be there for each other and so when he heard Michonne feel so pained when she asked him what kind of life you know that really stirred him since giving her a better life is such a priority to him.

And then I just like the phrasing of this cuz Rick said something similar in season five when he told Michonne, “You asked me what it would take for me to believe it was real.” Like when she asks him something, Homeboy listens and wants to give her an answer. Here for it. 👌🏽

And it just again goes to show that this Richonne dynamic has been going on since long before they became an official couple.

Rick goes on to say, “It wasn’t. It wasn’t a life.” I love that he’s taking this time to let Michonne know he realized she was right about how they could not call a reality of living under Negan “a life”.

It’s cool cuz in 7x4 Rick wasn’t ready to fight back yet and Michonne was willing to meet him where he was. And here he’s essentially telling her that he really does get it now and he’s now meeting her where she is.

I also appreciate him saying “it wasn’t” and not “it isn’t” cuz it lets you know that ever since he and Michonne agreed to fight back in that cell the “serve Negan” life was over for them. Like as much as it may appear like that’s still their situation right now, that stopped being their life the minute they decided they were going to do something about it.

Rick reminds her, “What we did back there. What we’re doing now, making a future for Judith and Glenn and Maggie’s baby, fighting the fight, that’s living”

A lot of what Rick says in this scene is similar to what Michonne said in the cell cuz they’re one and one’s words are the others words at this point.

But the difference that people hilariously noted is in Michonne’s speech she mentioned Carl too. Of course Rick is thinking of Carl also but he’s probably like look if Carl is old enough to shoot machine guns at the sanctuary then he’s no longer lumped in with the kids’. 😂

And then I adore that Rick says “fighting the fight” cuz that’s exactly what Michonne said she was smiling about at the beginning of the episode. That scene where she said that was so casual but here we see Rick really took those words in. They’re in deep with this whipped-ness y'all. 😋

I also just love this line cuz usually we see Michonne being the one to uplift and motivate Rick with her words and so it’s cool to see Rick doing the same for her and being the voice to remind her of what she reminded him which is that fighting the fight is living.

It’s cute that just like she’s used his own words to motivate him with the whole “We’re the ones who live” he’s now using her words to motivate her. Y’all know Richonne is spelled G-O-A-T right? 🙌🏾

I adore that he then tells her, “You showed me that”. I love it cuz he’s really giving her credit for instilling this newfound will to fight in him. And plus when he was telling her how fighting is living he was speaking with so much conviction and then to tell her it’s her that’s showed him that is really cool cuz it means he’s come to firmly believe in the words she’s spoken to him.

Also I love this cuz there’s no fluff around it. It’s 100% clear that he’s telling Michonne that she’s the reason he’s come to know and believe what he knows now. Like in the proposal, because Rick said “reordering things” that can make people feel like that’s all he wanted when you know he wants more. But this line here is just plain and simple. He’s telling her specifically that she is the one who showed him it’s worth fighting the fight. 👌🏽

And then he says, “You can lose me.” And Michonne and I both weren’t trying to hear that lol so she very adamantly says “No” and turns away. And it’s heartrending cuz you again see just how much Michonne doesn’t even want to entertain the idea that she could lose him. 😥

I think she also has this reaction because seeing the way she literally emptied upon thinking she lost him, opened her eyes to the fact that there are still some things that could reverse who she is and bring her back to that old state of just shutting down. 

And so I think she feels like losing him is losing herself and the person she’s become, so she really doesn’t think she can go on in the same way without him.

And Rick says, “Yes you can.” Y’all Rick knows that the odds of him coming out of this alive are slim because he will be at the forefront of this war. And because as the captain he has to be willing to go down with the ship. It’s heartbreaking cuz I know he’s happy to fight cuz it’s making Michonne happy and he’s also come to his own conclusion that it’s what’s right, but after being so broken by Negan and knowing what it feels like to be so helpless in that lineup, Rick knows this could be the end for him. 😥

That’s why it’s so super sweet that he wanted more days with just Michonne because he’s so aware that his days might be numbered and it just goes to show how important Michonne is to him that he’d want to dedicate some of those days to spending time with her solely.

And then Rick says, “I can lose you.” And let me tell you this was my legit reaction when I heard that…

Originally posted by tonitamar

Y’all I admit I was salty. Like 3000mg of sodium, salty. 😂 The first time I heard this, I really was thinking Rick tried it cuz ain’t no way homeboy can lose her. She’s his source of pretty much everything. 

And I knew he obviously didn’t mean it in a way that meant this relationship wasn’t a big deal to him but I still initially felt like these were some lies lol.

But then I stopped and assessed the err of my ways and learned my lesson again (I’m seeing that’s a common theme for me 😋) and as I thought about it more I eventually realized what Rick was really saying.

This moment that originally made me side eye Rick, made me actually really appreciate what he’s saying once I got out of my feelings lol.

I think upon first hearing all the uses of “can” in this scene it could sort of sound like “can” as in like “We can handle losing each other and move on and be fine”. But that’s not what it means imo. I realized, what many of you probably realized sooner than me, and that’s that this wasn’t about an emotional ability but rather a physical ability to lose each other.

Like Rick knows that this fight could be the last fight for both of them and so he’s trying to help Michonne see that there is a possibility that they can be taken from each other cuz they aren’t guaranteed to make it out of this war.

He means that he can literally lose her if something were to happen to her in the war. But that doesn’t mean he’ll be fine and dandy afterwards. (And we know good and well he wouldn’t be lol).

Rick’s just now more aware than ever of his own mortality as well as others. Think about 7x1 when he imagined each person in the lineup getting the bat. He’s been thinking about just how quick he could lose people for a while.

And that’s why he was so willing to live the surrendered life at first cuz it was his way of protecting people, and his family in particular. So he knows that as much as he was willing to not fight back in order to avoid losing her, he now has had to accept that possibility cuz it comes with the territory of fighting back.

Plus I know my saltiness came from acting like Rick said “I can lose you” directly after Michonne just had this vulnerable moment of saying she can’t lose him and that’s def not how it actually went down lol. 

Rick’s emphasis certainly seemed to be more on the idea that she can lose him. And even saying “I can lose you” doesn’t mean that he’s speaking about him making it and her not. Like it could still mean that if he dies he loses her.

I’ve heard people interpret this in a way that resonated with me cuz they were saying how Rick is not imagining a scenario where he makes it and she doesn’t. Like I think in his mind either he goes or they both go, but I’m pretty sure he’s not picturing a life where she would go in this fight and he would live cuz they’re both going to be leading the way in this war.

And I think the interpretation of this line is further confirmed when he goes on to say, “We can lose our friends, people we love.” (Again those “I love you”’s are coming 🙏🏽) Cuz there’s no way he’s saying they can lose everyone they care about and just go about their business like it’s nothing lol. After this line it becomes pretty clear that he meant “can” strictly in a “physical possibility to lose people” kind of way.

So “I can lose you” started off as a line that I was not feeling at all lol but I eventually came to understand it. 👌🏽

And what really makes it special is that once Rick came to grips with the likelihood of being taken from Michonne or losing her, he didn’t just leave it at that, he then went on to actively take out an extended time to be with just her and to make the most of their possibly limited time together.

If he doesn’t get forever with her, Rick was going to at least get some valuable time with her, which makes this honeymoon even sweeter. 🙌🏾😊

Anon Answer: Bat Kids as Parents, Part I

Anon, this question is gorgeous and I’ve spent a lot of time thinking it over and I just…. I realize that this is completely and irrevocably wonderful. I love this question. It’s given me warm and fuzzies for the entire week and I apologize it’s taken me so long to finally answer it in full!

I do want to clarify that unless you count my “furred children,” I don’t really have my own kids just yet. I’m merely very actively in the developing stages of making my own career and eventually going through the adoption process. The children I work with and reference on the blog are through a number of mentorship and volunteering programs including Forward in the Fifth, my church’s classroom & bread basket, and a few other organizations I’ve had the pleasure of working through over the years.

I should also mention that while I always try to base my interpretations on canon, this really is a subject that’s super opinionated and this is just my take on the subject. One I actively love!

Also I’m warm and fuzzy so while I’ll try to be realistic, note that I really just want everyone to share hugs and WUVVVVVVVVVV

Keep reading

In which Cisco learns to deal with life after the Flashpoint Paradox and Hartley learns he may have a thing for nerdy engineers with penchants for graphic tees. More specifically, just one nerdy engineer with a penchant for graphic tees. 

(I’m a tease and this is like the first half of a chapter for a long Hartmon fic I’m currently writing…and it’s very slow build)

When Cisco woke up the morning after they had defeated Zoom, he knew something had gone horribly, horribly wrong. Had being the operating word.

He could feel it deep in his bones. Could feel it in the very fabric of the timestream. The accelerator explosion. Iris. Barry. The Flash. All gone. And in their place, something else had taken hold.

Cisco was just glad that whatever Barry had done to reset the timeline had worked. Even still, fragments of the fractured timeline haunted his dreams.

He dreamed of Barry living out his life with his parents, but still not happy, not when he didn’t have his powers; of Caitlin and Ronnie finally going on that honeymoon to Tahiti; of Iris and Eddie getting their happily-ever-after, the byline Iris West-Allen lost somewhere in the annals of time.

He dreamed of his own life without the STAR Labs team. Of the same crappy relationship with his family. Of long nights working for the real Harrison Wells, only as a janitor on the night shift, not Wells’s favorite scientist. And he couldn’t describe how he knew it, but just as he knew the Reverse Flash had actually killed him that day in front of the containment field, he knew that these dreams were so much more than just spindles and complexes and delta waves. They weren’t even visions from an alternate universe. He knew without a doubt that this had happened right here on Earth-1.

And that was a wake-up call if he ever had one.

Keep reading

( Ah, sorry it’s a bit late! Thank you for sending in the prompt I don’t really know how to tackle this.. and I might have changed a few things.. I apologize if this isn’t the thing you were thinking of..So. )
( Warnings for too much use of cuss words, out of character-ness. )


characters: miyuki kazuya, kuramochi youichi, sawamura eijun (basically seidou)

Maybe he shouldn’t have gone to the toilet.

Preposterous, of course, considering it is his duty as the owner of his body to take care of it, and such needs need to be met. So the blame doesn’t lay on that, then.

Maybe they shouldn’t have talked somewhere near the toilet.

Okay, this, Miyuki was willing to concede as not their fault. They didn’t know Miyuki was there - heck, they probably didn’t want anybody to be there, if one adds the fact that what they’ve said was.. disturbing. Miyuki doesn’t know if the Coaches knew about it. Is it even legal? Fair? No, certainly not fair. They didn’t want anybody to hear, but they’ve severely underestimated the voice of one Sawamura Eijun.

Maybe Miyuki shouldn’t have eavesdropped.

Oh, maybe he really shouldn’t have.

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Best of March

Alright, so for the past couple of months since the new year, I’ve been making up lists of my favorite albums and songs at the end of each month.  It’s been going pretty well so far, so I’m trying to keep up with it.  For March I’ve listed a few more than I have in past months however, because this has been the most prominent month we’ve had for great music so far this year in my opinion and most of these I’m sure will stay with me throughout the year!  As always, let me know of anything you guys really enjoyed that I may have missed!  These were my personal favorites of the month:


Albums:

1.  Kendrick Lamar - To Pimp a Butterfly

To Pimp a Butterfly on first listen feels like one of those albums that shouldn’t really exist.  Not at this time anyways, and not even by Kendrick Lamar.  Although he seems to have become the most socially and politically aware rapper of our time over a rather short time-span, good kid m.A.A.d city is still fresh in our minds as it is just over two years behind us and strikes as a very personal record for Kendrick and yet this new record is even more incredible and appears aimed at a wider crowd and towards a greater vision.  Like D’Angelo’s excellent comeback with last years Black Messiah, thematically To Pimp a Butterfly couldn’t have arrived at a more appropriate time.  In the wake of the Ferguson unrest following the deaths of multiple black Americans at the hands of white police officers Kendrick’s new album hits hard.  With funk and jazz influenced beats by Flying Lotus, groovy bass lines from Thundercat, and excellent vocal / rap performances most recognizably from Bilal, Snoop Dogg, Rapsody, Anna Wise, and even one of the Isley Brothers, this is a fantastic listen all the way through without a single weak spot.  Although To Pimp a Butterfly doesn’t flow as effortlessly track-by-track as gkmc did being a concept album, it takes a much more appealing approach within the context of this record.  Kendrick gradually unveils a lengthy poem he has written to accompany the album as it goes on.  The poem, as it is revealed before almost every track here, presents the theme of that track it is preceding and is eventually unveiled in it’s entirety in the closing track “Mortal Man” after Kendrick pieces together a flawless interview with the ghost of 2Pac.  Throughout listening to the interview, it’s easy to forget this is the ghost of a rap idol and not really him in the flesh until Kendrick breaks the silence after reading him the poem.  “What’s your perspective on that?…Pac?… Pac?…PAC?!”

2.  Sufjan Stevens - Carrie & Lowell

After The Age of Adz, a return to form was never expected from Sufjan Stevens.  It seemed as though he had reached a point of no return from colorful electronic synthesizers and massive production styles.  I’ll admit,The Age of Adz is just as enjoyable as some of his best work, but as great as that album was, it left me longing for the old Sufjan, the quaint folky singer-songwriter who wrote sentimental and emotional records like Illinois, Michigan, and Seven Swans.   Regardless, Sufjan is back!  Both sonically and thematically he is back to his roots.  This album revolves around his parents, to whom the album is named after, his life growing up as a child, and ultimately the death of his mother.  Sufjan has been very open in interviews since her death in 2012, stating that his relationship with Carrie was never an ideal one for a young child growing up, as she abandoned him and his brother and never really adhered to the mother figure a young boy needs, but in the end he loved and forgave her all the same.  All of this shows through this record, as he never comes off as resentful towards the late memories of his mother, although he goes through many stages while mourning her death;  thirsting for attention, constant regression of the past, loss of belief, and even contemplation of suicide in certain instances.  The overall theme is depressing of course, however Sufjan emerges positively, regaining his faith in God and forgiving his mother after everything.  His voice hardly registers above a whisper on most of these tracks but it goes along with the mood effortlessly as he sings beautifully over finger-picked guitars, lush strings, and smartly-placed synthesizers.  By the end you’ll realize that everything Sufjan Stevens has done musically so far has led toCarrie & Lowell.

3.  Lower Dens - Escape from Evil

It’s no coincidence that Lower Dens have been billed to play the same gigs as Beach House in the past.  Jana Hunter’s voice is strangely reminiscent of Victoria Legrand’s and of course both bands making lush dream-pop tunes just goes to strengthen the comparison.  Although Lower Dens definitely haven’t been as widely recognized in the ever-expanding genre of dream-pop as Beach House have been, Escape from Evil is sure to change that as they proceed in a more straight-forward direction than they did with the experimental Nootropics.  Undoubtedly it is the band’s boldest effort to date which is showcased in excellent singles right off the bat with “To Die in L.A.” and “Ondine”.  The direction is the same as in their past records with Escape from Evil, however the end result of this album is more clear-cut than they’ve been able to manage in the past.  They’ve upped the anti on production here with help from the likes of Ariel Rechtshaid, Chris Coady, and John Congleton to make a near-perfect record.  The theme here feels love-ridden. On songs like “To Die in L.A.” where she sings “time will turn the tide” as she waits for a long lost lover to come back to her, or on “Sucker’s Shangri-la” she sings, “it doesn’t help that he can see you coming and he knows how to break you like an animal” as she returns to an abusive relationship.  This theme of love is almost over-bearing on some of the tracks but it only strengthens the album as a whole.  Escape from Evil is overall a very spacious album with no two tracks that feel alike, gorgeous instrumentals, and above all Jana Hunter’s beautiful voice which soars over every track flawlessly.

4.  Tobias Jesso Jr. - Goon

Goon is an intimidating title for an album so tame by such a lovelorn singer-songwriter.  Ultimately Tobias Jesso Jr.’s debut album is full of what I’d call anthems for hopeless romantics.  After all, maybe Goon is supposed to create an image of him as this 6-foot-something sappy songwriter living in L.A. whose gone through one too many breakups…that is what this album cover is supposed to convey, isn’t it?  Regardless, Goon is filled with many great songs mainly about lost love and self-doubt most of which are filled with smart orchestration, beautiful piano ballads, and of course a crooning Tobias, which usually have a very sentimental feeling to them.  The absolute stand-out track here, “How Could You Babe” comes early on in the album setting the mood and pretty much lets you know what heartbreak you’ll be getting into before you get too far in to back out of this record.  It starts off with the high notes of his piano making the track feel more upbeat than it actually is, until you get to the lyrics of course, “So long my only friend. I guess we gave it a try, and then I guess we tried again, I don’t remember why.  Well nothing’s as hard to do as just saying goodbye”.  What’s most appealing to me about Goon is that it’s more honest and easy to relate to than what most artists are writing about these days.  Songs like these are hard to find among modern music but he makes it sound so easy to do, after a whole lot of heartbreak that is.

5.  Courtney Barnett - Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit

Last time I obsessed over Courtney Barnett was when she released what I’d say is her breakthrough single “Avant Gardener”.  On that song we learned something about her.  She over-thinks things almost constantly.  I mean so does every living person I’m sure.  But with her it seems almost to the point of a dreadful anxiety!  “Avant Gardener” was humorous in that by gardening-which is supposed to be a form stress relief-she somehow ends up in the back of an ambulance.  Sometimes I Sit… only plays off of this self-realization of anxiety found on tracks from her past EPs.  If you pick up a physical copy of this record, you’ll find in the booklet a bunch of hand-drawn diagrams of different chairs with descriptions of their strengths, some you’d find in a thrift shop and also some that Barnett has drawn from her own original ideas.  It’s as if she’s trying to find the perfect seat to just sit and relax.  Of course as you’ll learn through listening to her music, she’s never ever just sitting.  She’s constantly running her head around ideas that will make even the most stable person have an existential crisis.  Sometimes I Sit… In a strangely positive outlook showcases her excellent storytelling ability and brings up multiple issues in Barnett’s life: self-doubt, insomnia, and anxiety being only a few, but she refuses to just sit down and let it all overrun her state of mind.

6.  Lady Lamb the Beekeeper - After

The title of Aly Spaltro’s sophomore album as Lady Lamb raises one obvious question, “after what?”.  After the successes of becoming a target as one of the larger fandoms I’ve seen in internet blogging? After the end of a long and trying relationship, maybe?  Or simply stating this is the next logical step after her excellent debut Ripely Pine?  If the latter is the case, that kind of puzzles me seeing as this album would have felt more relevant as her debut in my opinion than the very dense and dark world of Ripely Pine.  Only after I’d finished obsessing over a long-awaited studio version of “Violet Clementine” was I able to fully enjoy this album for what it is.  Afteris undoubtedly more fun overall than her debut regardless of lacking the intensity that Ripely Pine possessed although it doesn’t feel like it was the next logical step.  Aly Spaltro still gives the same incredible vocal delivery and depth that I’ve come to expect from her, but it all comes in the form of a brighter idea.  While many of the tracks on Ripely Pine felt claustrophobic like they were most likely conceived in her moonlit bedroom, these new tracks flourish with a brand new pop sound you wouldn’t have expected to hear from her.  Although it took me more time to appreciate After as a whole in the wake of the brilliance of her first album, it is just as enjoyable and is definitely more full of color as the songs here range from that great feeling you get when you make your bus to taking sides with a believer of aliens from another planet while skeptics try to rip him apart.

7.  Yowler - The Offer

Before hearing this new project of hers, I’d best known Maryn Jones for her work in a band called All Dogs.  With that project and with Yowler as well she makes the kind of lo-fi music that would be recorded in the confinements of her bedroom or a friend’s basement maybe, the kind of music that will probably never see a major label and will only be released on very limited quantities of cassettes.  However these factors don’t deny the power of an album such as The Offer.  Maryn Jones sings with a shy vocal delivery that is comparable to that of Grouper’s Liz Harris, a voice that barely reaches over a whisper over top of a finger-picked acoustic guitar.  Of course there’s not much room in the world of music for a voice like this when you’re competing against countless other artists making music that’s more recognized on a larger scale.  Her music however doesn’t beg for recognition but instead stays in this realm of music that might go undiscovered for a long time until she gradually makes her way out of smaller labels which harbor these artists like Double Double Whammy.  Every move is a step forward though, as with her Yowler project she’s jumped onto a record label where as with All Dogs she was still self-releasing songs of the same caliber.  The Offer proves as the best thing Maryn Jones has released so far and she’s only moving forward.

Honorable Mentions:

Free Cake for Every Creature - Moving Songs

Godspeed You! Black Emperor - Asunder, Sweet and Other Distress

Laura Marling - Short Movie

Modest Mouse - Strangers to Ourselves


Songs:

1.  Grimes - REALiTi

It still comes as a surprise to me that this is one of the songs that Claire Boucher has scrapped from her long-awaited forthcoming Grimes record.  Personally I think it’s one of her best songs yet!  “REALiTi” has an infectious drum-beat right from the start with drone-y synths that fade in and out and probably a ton of other effects.  There’s a few hand-clap moments that feel pretty unorthodox and the song has a pronounced EDM influence to it that is much milder than that of last year’s “Go!” with Blood Diamonds, although the overall result is incredible.  This has probably been my most obsessed over song of the year so far and for good reason!  She sings, “Baby, every morning there are mountains to climb, taking all my time”.  Through seeing the kind of lifestyle she appears to live it’s difficult to remember that she’s most likely gone through just as many hardships as the average person.  In just a few short years she’s gone from being a completely DIY artist to being one of the new artists signed to Jay Z’s Roc Nation record label.  I have no doubts that there are endless stresses there, trying to assimilate to a more mainstream influenced crowd maybe.  “Welcome to reality”, she sings as I’m sure an aspiring artist would hear many times when first starting out in the music business.  Claire Boucher is still turning heads as one of the most influential and unique artists making art-pop music and I’m sure there’s good reason why she’s been delaying the release of her follow up to Visions.  For now however this song is tiding me over!

2.  Kendrick Lamar - King Kunta

“Bitch, where were you when I was walking?”, Kendrick asks, as if it’s an attack on someone who’s now a close friend to him only because of his rise to fame.  The start of “King Kunta” carries the same theme of materialization over from “For Free? (interlude)”.  It’s that whole “Benz Friendz” mentality all over again.  Kendrick is constantly finding people who are after him for his fame.  With “King Kunta”  Kendrick brings that “Game of Thrones” reality from the era of rappers like Biggie and 2Pac back into the rap game after it’s been forgotten for so long.  The world of rap music isn’t nearly as competitive as it once was, now Kendrick is claiming that position at the top of the hill and is ready to fight for it.  After all I’m sure he knows that he’s one of the only rappers alive right now actually making a difference with his music.   He calls out other rappers at his level, “But a rapper with a ghost writer, what the fuck happened? / y’all sharing bars like you got the bottom bunk in a two man cell”, but it’s indirect who he’s attacking.  Kanye?  Drake, maybe?  Kendrick addresses multiple things on his mind in “King Kunta” over what is for sure the funkiest beat he’s ever rapped over.  To Pimp a Butterfly…To Kill a Mockingbird…the album carries many references but the most direct are his love/hate views on Judge Taylor (who can be seen on the lower left hand of the album cover).  “Fuck the judge, I made it past 25″, he raps as if he sees what the judge did for Tom Robinson in that book but dismisses it as unnecessary, like Tom could have made it without the pity of a white judge.  Maybe these are just his views on a novel about black oppression made by a white american novelist but they’re strong ones.  What’s more interesting is how he seems to take the judge’s side on the album version of “i” saying “the judge made time” in his speech to a rowdy crowd during his live performance.  The overall message is cloudy.

3.  Kendrick Lamar - u

“u” is instantly recognizable as a reflection of everything Kendrick was saying on his Grammy-winning single “i”.  While “I” was incredibly confident with motives of “I love Myself”, “u” goes back on everything he said and comes off as a bit schizophrenic.  “Loving you is complicated”, Kendrick repeats at the beginning of the track.  At first it sounds like he’s talking about someone else in his life, instinctively.  What he’s actually doing is beating himself up over the entire song, “I fuckin’ tell you, you fuckin’ failure, you ain’t no leader! / I never liked you, forever despise you, I don’t need you! / The world don’t need you!”  He is literally shouting at himself in anger for multiple things:  not being their for his family after becoming famous, blaming himself for the misguidance of his younger sister while he was away.  Midway through the song, there’s a choppy beat change-up along with an impromptu appearance by none other than his housekeeper before Kendrick slips into another stage.  He continues rapping although now he’s practically in tears, you can hear the absolute distress coming through his vocal delivery as he now recounts the death of his brother.  “A friend never leave Compton for profit or leave his best friend little brother, you promised you’d watch him before they shot him / You even face-timed instead of a hospital visit”, he continues.  Now he’s got a bottle and he does it so convincingly that it actually sounds like he’s drinking while rapping.  He finishes with, “The world’ll know money can’t stop a suicidal weakness”, and he’s never sounded more convincing.

4.  Sufjan Stevens - Fourth of July

Where the excellent lead single, “No Shade in the Shadow of the Cross” dealt with Sufjan’s state of mind after the passing of his mother, “Fourth of July” throws you right into the midst of her passing as he is sitting at her bedside in the hospital.  “Well you do enough talk my little hawk, why do you cry?”, Sufjan’s mother tries to comfort him.  He asks her about her experiences in life events, specifically with the famous Tillamook forest fire and the fourth of July.  It’s like Sufjan is frantically trying to catch up with his mother after so much time lost since their relationship wasn’t an ideal one.  He knows she doesn’t have much time left, and he is also trying to comfort her in asking about her past life.  His mother continues, “Did you get enough love my little dove? / I’m sorry I left but it was for the best though it never felt right”.  The whole thing plays out like a movie in your head while listening to it.  Both Sufjan and his mother are trying to make up for the past in such little time, and it’s heartbreaking to listen to.  All the while there are looming synthesized horns in the background inching toward her death, and it all feels too real as Sufjan repeatedly sings “We’re all going to die” as he finally accepts the reality of Carrie’s death.

5.  Jamie xx - Loud Places (feat. Romy)

Jamie xx is back with a colorful new single and look who he’s brought along, none other than The xx’s vocalist Romy Madley-Croft of course!  The end result is as you could expect.  Romy brings her usual lovely spacious vocals to the table while mastermind Jamie xx does the rest.   The setting here is perfect.  As the song starts, there’s people chattering in the background over a glockenspiel-like synth as Romy sings, “You go to loud places to find someone who will take you higher than I took you” to which she reflects, “Didn’t I take you to higher places you can’t reach without me?”.  It’s an intimate sentiment that is only built upon by Jamie’s build-up of flashy electronic synths, and drum machines.  “You’re in ecstasy without me.  When you come down I won’t be around”, Romy sings once the beat comes down making for another excellent collaboration between the two.

6.  Lower Dens - Ondine

It’s often difficult to hold on to love.  Jana Hunter expresses this well with “Ondine”, a sure stand-out from Escape from Evil, as her voice soars above a pronounced drum beat, electric guitar and some lurking synths reminiscent of that which you’d hear in some recent music from Wild Beasts.  “You are leaving”, she sings with pain in her voice as she continues trying to hold on to a well-found love, repeating over and over, “I’ll treat you better”.  This is for sure one of the better love songs I’ve heard in awhile!

7.  Lower Dens - Quo Vadis

I looked it up and “Quo Vadis” is apparently latin for “Where are you going?”, which I found kind of interesting because listening to Escape from Evil this track feels as though it could be a companion piece to “Ondine” which felt like a very solitude and dead-end track on it’s own.  “We don’t have time cause time is a hook on a line and we’re swimming for our whole lives”, Jana Hunter sings as if she’s still trying to salvage what’s left of the relationship that felt indefinitely over in “Ondine”.  She continues, “It’s impossible what I dream of / I wanna be with you alone”.

8.  Chromatics - I Can Never Be Myself When You’re Around

“All the dreams we had were more than what we found”, sings Ruth Radelet reflecting on a relationship that could have been more that what it actually is.  The title says it all.  This song chronicles a trying relationship over a bombastic drumbeat  which only grows greater as the song continues, with static-filled electronics reminiscent of Crystal Castles and backing vocals from Italians Do It Better labelmate, Megan Louise of Desire.  Of course Johnny Jewel is behind it all, but everyone comes together to make this excellent song what it is.  Come on, Johnny…still waiting for Dear Tommy!

9.  Lady Lamb the Beekeeper - Penny Licks

If you’re a Lady Lamb fan, you probably already know that Aly Spaltro has a knack for taking her older demos and making them into something much greater, and that’s exactly what she’s done with After stand-out “Penny Licks”!  Funny, cause the intro tricks the listener into thinking it’s still that same old demo before the song bursts into color from black and white.  “We can’t seem to find a stable table so we’ll take all our eggs and we’ll be on our way”, she sings once the song really starts.  The song continues the same way until a bout a minute and a half in when you get a rolling bass line which leads into a full on drum kit.  “We will crane our necks” she seems to reference “Crane Your Neck” from Ripely Pine.  Well done Aly, you’ve done it again!

10.  Tobias Jesso Jr. - Without You

Another sad song about love.  We’ve already established that Tobias Jesso Jr. does these well.  “Without You” is perhaps one of the best on Goon!    “Why can’t you just love me? / Should I move on or should I wait? / How’d you get so high above me?”, Tobias croons.  These are questions that I’m sure many people ask themselves but can never seem to answer.  They just drift there in your head until you are able to get over them.  He continues, “I reach higher every day, but nothing changes, no it all just stays the same”.  Danielle Haim joins in on drums as Tobias goes into the chorus, “I can hardly breathe without you.”

11.  Courtney Barnett - Depreston

With “Depreston”, Courtney Barnett seems to use a day of normal, uneventful house-hunting to paint a bigger picture.  “We drive to a house in Preston, we see police arresting a man with his hand in a bag / How’s that for first impressions?”, she speak-sings as the song starts to become gloomy.  Everything starts adding up to make it not such an ideal day.  They get to the house and she looks around realizing that the last owner probably passed there.  She continues, “Then I see the handrail in the shower, a collection of those canisters for coffee, tea, and flour, and a photo of a young man in a van in vietnam”.  “If you’ve got a spare half a million you could knock it down and start re-building”, she repeats, as if she’s speaking as the person who was selling the house.  It’s a hard idea to think of, demolishing someone’s home soon after they pass from it.

12.  Courtney Barnett - Kim’s Caravan

Sometimes I Sit… takes a dark turn with “Kim’s Caravan” as it creates an image of her sitting on the beach having a bunch of environmentally aware notions.   She reflects on a dead seal on the beach, “guess it just wants to die / I would want to die too, with people putting oil into my air / but to be fair I’ve done my share”.  It gets darker when she finds a note on the beach that reads a grisly quote: “The Great Barrier Reef, it ain’t so great anymore. It’s been raped beyond belief, the dredgers treat it like a whore”.  All of this seems like a hell of a lot to take in for someone who just wanted to sit and relax on the beach.  She slips into refrain, “I drank ‘til I was sinking, sank ‘til I was thinking that I’m thankful for this view”.

13.  Yowler - Yowler

I’ve seen self-titled albums many times, but it’s not often I hear of a self-titled song.  This is weird to me, like is the name of the project based off of the song, or the song based off of the decision to name the project Yowler?  Regardless, “Yowler” is the stand-out track from Yowler in my opinion.  Maryn Jones sings beautifully over a finger-picked acoustic guitar.  “You’ll lose me in the trees, but I’m alive”, she sings as if she’s a child about to runaway from home.  It’s a selfish thought really.  I really don’t know what to make of this song to be honest.

14.  Kanye West - All Day (feat. Allan Kingdom, Theophilus London, & Paul McCartney)

Alright, so I still don’t have any idea how Kanye’s new album is going to completely come together, but so far all of the singles have sounded pretty incredible!  With “All Day” Kanye West is back to going hard and full-on rapping!  Although it may not have all of the flare that the live performance at the Brits had it still sounds awesome!  This is definitely not a simple track by any means, it throws you for a loop with a ferocious beat, some vocals from collaborator Theophilus London, some chopped-up beat change-ups and a whistling Paul McCartney.  I don’t think anyone can predict what Kanye is going for next.

15.  Tame Impala - Let It happen

Tame Impala are back after almost 3 years after they turned heads with the very impressive and game-changing Lonerism with a single that is just short of 8 minutes!   They go for a distinctly electronic sound this time around while still sticking to their classic influences.  “I heard about a whirlwind that’s coming around”, Kevin Parker sings before repeating the title in refrain.  It’s a bold first single and it definitely threw me for a loop!  I was scrambling for my computer mouse the first time I heard this song to stop it from skipping when really it was just more of Tame Impala’s tricks.

Break me

TITLE:  Break me

CHAPTER NUMBER/ONE SHOT: one shot

AUTHOR tomcuddlesfic

WHICH TOM/CHARACTER: Actor Tom 

GENRE: romance 

FIC SUMMARY:  OC is left heartbroken by Tom. But can they make mend their relationship?

RATING FOR THE WHOLE FIC: G

Author’s notes: I challenged myself to write angst and heartache. Comments would be splendid.

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Madly On, pt.3

Ship: Snowbaz

Rating: T+

Summary: It’s been six years since Baz and Simon broke up, six years since Baz went off the map. For all intents and purposes, they’re out of each other’s lives. But when chance—and maybe a little bit of fate and Penelope Bunce—throws them back together again, they have to face the things that made them split up in the first place…and decide once and for all if they really are meant to be apart.

Chapter: 3/8

also here: http://archiveofourown.org/works/5579635/chapters/12859927

|part one| |part two| |part three| |part four| |part five| |part six| |part seven| |part eight|


Baz

It’s bloody cold in the walk-in cooler, although I guess that’s the point, and I guess it’s not like it really bothers me. I’m sprawled out on the floor trying to tap a particularly difficult keg. It wouldn’t quite as difficult if there weren’t as many half-empty liquor boxes scattered around, but Gabe was in charge of stocking the back today, and clearly, organization is yet another thing that isn’t one of his strong suites.

Though neither is keg-tapping, which is why he’s here, leaning in the doorway as I squirm around the barrels. He’s bugging me, actually. I’ve been trying to dial down on the whole, you know, attitude thing (I’m trying to blend in here, not stand out) but sometimes, it’s all I’ve got.

Well, I am a Pitch, after all. Even if I don’t go by it these days.

“You know,” I grunt as I twist the tap, “you don’t need to be here. We both know that you’re never going to learn how to do this.”

“No,” he drawls back. “I just like the view.”

Gross. I feel so objectified.

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Second Chance.

Prompt: Could u do a theo raeken imagine where you guys were inseparable before he left and u had a crush on him and when he came back he was always looking for you and trying to be with u again but u were still mad after he left and he tries to make it up to u? – ANON

Author’s note: So I had to make a few changes from what the show says so that it would fit the prompt better. 1. He moved later than 4th grade. 2. He’s not so sketchy in my story haha.

-I also got a little bit of inspiration from Cassadee Pope’s song “I Wish I Could Break Your Heart.”

-It’s hard to write about a character that we’ve barely seen so far, but it also gave me room to play around with it. So I hope you like what I came up with! Thanks for the request!


Second Chance.

Senior Scribe.

She couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw him walk through the library doors for senior scribe. What the hell is he doing here? (Y/N) thought as she watched him smoothly make his way down the steps. He wasn’t supposed to be here. He wasn’t even supposed to be in California. He was supposed to be in New York where he moved to years ago. (Y/N) had so many questions going through her head. How did he even know about senior scribe? When did he get back into town? And most of all what was he doing back here?

(Y/N) rolled her eyes as every girl fawned over him as he made his way through the crowd. Theo was the type of guy that all the girls wanted to be with and all the guys were jealous of. He was ridiculously good looking, you know, the perfect body, perfectly tan skin, perfectly quaffed hair, that perfect smile to fool anyone… the whole package. He hadn’t changed much since the last time she saw him except get more good looking, if that was even possible.

Theo caught her staring and smiled, “(Y/N)!” He yelled as he started making his way towards her.

Crap, she thought as she quickly snuck away. She wasn’t about to get mixed up with him again. She had been there and done that before, and it ended horribly with her heartbroken and wondering what went wrong. Unfortunately, that didn’t stop her from reliving the memories as she wafted through the crowded library.

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Close To You (Richonne fic)

“Michonne.”

She just barely recognized the sound of Rick’s hoarse whisper as she stared into the dirt she was kneeled in. Drops of blood dotted said dirt, and she wanted to look away, but she refused to look up; couldn’t bear to. Two years into the apocalypse, she’d seen some gruesome things. She’d had her heart broken more than once by them. And while nothing would ever ruin her like seeing her baby as one of those… things, bearing witness to her friend being beaten to death was a fairly close second. And so, she stared at the dirt, watching as the blood melted it into some strange, muddy consistency, listening to the deafening sobs of her friends and family, all drowning out the sound of her boyfriend.

“Michonne,” Rick croaked out once more, her name coming out in one shaky syllable instead of two. When she didn’t respond, he fell back to his knees so that he could see her face, look into her eyes. He didn’t want to see anything else but her. “We have to go.” He gazed at her expectantly, desperately, as her expression refused to change, and she looked cold in every sense of the word. He tentatively reached out to touch her hand, thankful, more than anything, for the chance to do so again. “Baby…”

Her eyes flitted upward, finally recognizing what was happening. She instinctively recoiled from his touch, seeing he was much too close for comfort. If any of Negan’s men were still around watching them, they would see. They would know that Rick was hers and she was his; they would use it against him. Them. “Don’t.”

He didn’t have time to wonder in that moment why she was pulling away from him, so he nodded in understanding and quietly retreated. “We have to go,” he repeated, pleading.

“There’s nowhere to go,” she mumbled. Nowhere to hide.

He let out another wobbly sigh, still unable to quite find his bearings. He was only attempting to for her, for Carl, for his family. “Maggie still needs to get to Hilltop.”

She nodded, almost imperceptibly, as she had no idea how to respond to any of this. In her head, she was seesawing between rage and despair, and the rest of her seemed to have settled on stoicism. There was nothing to say. “Just take care of Carl,” Michonne told him. “I’ll be fine.”

“All right…” Rick nodded in compliance, but he was certain she wasn’t fine. She was always so protective of them – of Carl, especially – he knew this apathy was a symptom of her being the opposite of fine.

But he didn’t have the energy to fight her. Not then, not there. So he did the only thing he could do to help her in that moment – he pulled off his jacket and draped it over her. His fingers purposely grazed her shoulder as he stood from the ground, and before he headed off for the RV, he left her with four short words that meant everything when she’d said them to him. The context was different, of course, but at a time when he couldn’t see past his own trauma, she stood by him. And he would do the same for her. “I’m still with you.”

Michonne looked up at him, speechless, as she watched him walk toward the RV. She wanted to say something, but nothing came out. Nothing but a tiny whimper when she noticed their friend’s headless, lifeless body in her periphery. She squeezed her eyes shut and let out a deep sigh as she finished putting on Rick’s jacket. It took everything she had left to stand to her feet again, but stand, she did, and wiped the dirt from her body as as she followed behind Rick.

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