swans and geese

so if there’s one single trope i’m always down to fight it’s the animal bride (folklore motif 402??) which a lot of you are probably familiar with as the selkie - the fisherman either falls in love, steals her skin to trap her on land/gain power over her, or they fall in love and THEN he steals her skin to keep her from leaving, and either way she spends a lot of time gazing sadly out to sea and then she or her child finds the skin and never returns again.
and that’s awful on a whole lot of levels - it’s not love, it’s control.

BUT. but the thing is. you how selkies/seal women was a pretty common variation of this? another really popular one was swans.

i just want you to think about that for a moment. swans. like…I get it, they’re pretty, graceful birds, certainly it’s easy to imagine them magically becoming pretty graceful ladies? but have you ever fought a swan. swans are awful. swans are the devil’s geese. imagine seeing a pretty magic lady and being absolutely enchanted by her, and stealing her magic feather cloak, and then you go up and say ‘hey i’m in love with you, let me make you my queen, it will be great, we’ll be so happy’ and she just looks at you for a moment and…

you know i was going to say maybe she just shouts for her sisters and suddenly you’re realizing you’ve made a terrible terrible mistake bc you’re surrounded by big fucking birds who are all hissing. but honestly if this swan lady is as aggressively down to brawl as any other generally unhappy swan, then she’d straight up fuck you up on her own. she’d just deck you roundhouse, honestly. you don’t fuck with swans. why does this trope exist

ANIMAL COURT FAQ *18.06 UPDATE

To avoid spamming the dashboard I have compiled the Inbox ASKs and answer them together in this post (‘∀’●)❤ ( A few questions are repeated, so I have combined them as one.)  Questions that are not listed here, the answer will be revealed in future comics 👍

Again, thank you so so much for the interest, encouragement and support❤

♛18.06. Update: Sorry for the late reply, I have compiles some more anon asks under the “Read more.” :) Again thank you for the questions!
♛So Sorry Guys. Link fixed

✒ Is the Fox personal bodyguard a male or female?

The Fox is a lady…? To be honest, I didn’t have a gender in mind when I design the fox, so feel free to interpret it anyway you like :)

Will we be seeing any more new faces in the animal court?

There will be other minor characters, such as other soldiers, maids, butlers, gardeners and royal members. And of course the King and Queen of the Goose and Swan kingdom. However majority of the story will still focus on the core 7 below.

Keep reading

St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Missouri, May 28, 1908

Wikipedia says that:

The zoo initially held 51 deer and antelope, 11 buffaloes, a sacred cow, a sandhill crane, 20 prairie dogs, a dromedary camel, eagles, ducks, elk, foxes, geese, swans, rabbits, a raccoon, a China sheep, opossums, a buzzard, owls, peafowl, among other animals.

By 1921 they had begun to build bear pits, a reptile house and a primate house. Big Cat Country was added in 1976.

Today the St Louis Zoo does have lions, tigers and hippos! The park commissioner would be proud.

Happy Trans Day of Visibility! Here’s a shoutout to all the trans people losing their invisibility today!
The trans people who:

-disappeared years ago to their family and friends and will have to talk to them today

-drive their cars into drive-thrus and scare the people working there

-pretend to be ghosts, walk around haunted houses, and chuck shit around

-put tiny lizards down the back of people’s shirts while walking through the street

-have to be the special effects people for their cis friends’ harry potter stageplays

-sneak into the white house and graffiti penises on trump’s desk while he isn’t looking

-have been invisible for so long that they’ve forgotten what they look like, and like it that way

-whose idea of fun is harassing swans and geese in the lake, making them angry, and then directing them to transphobes

-give sad stangers hugs so they feel better, or terrified. it varies

-stand behind people in long flowy dresses and wave them around so it looks even better

remember, you are valid! tomorrow you will be invisible again!

4

A male swan was terrorising the loch at Beecraigs today, steaming around like a battleship with his wings raised in a threatening manner, chasing all other birds out of the water. A family of greylags bore the brunt and aimlessly walked up and down the loch road looking for way back into the water…..but the swan shadowed them all the way.

Mallards kept their distance in a weird face off, and the greylags stood guard while their young foraged on the ground. What a saga! Surely to be continued….

anonymous asked:

Do swans and other birds mate for life because of love or just instinct?

Birds can be pretty smart and like most animals feel a kind of love. Swans, geese and some other birds mourn their lost loved ones. I have seen blue jays risk their lives attacking larger predatory birds which killed a mate. It must be love.

in 6th grade in French class we read a Russian folk tale called “Les oies sauvages” which translates to “The wild geese” (but for some reason in English translations the story’s called “The Magic Swan Geese”) and ever since then I’ve always thought a “Savage goose” or even to some extent “Wild goose” would make for a good name of an rpg enemy, my favorite monsters in jrpgs are ones that are references to mythology/folklore of various culture, the Castlevania games also do this 

Escape

One more chapter to go WTT…. on Christmas Eve the story ends.  12 Days of Christmas, 12 Chapters.  Hope you’ve enjoyed so far!!


CHAPTER ELEVEN 

Jamie woke while it was still dark.  He was somewhat disoriented by the fact that his bedroom window appeared to have moved 3 meters to the left, but then he remembered where he was.  His memory was further jogged by the fact that he had Claire’s left breast cradled in his hand while her arse pressed up against his lap.

Jamie kissed her shoulder, and regretfully removed his hand to lift her duvet and pull it up higher for warmth. He looked down the line of her body. From shoulder to waist to hip to thigh, the undulating lines reminded him of their first night together.  He’d looked down at Claire and saw Munros and valleys all along her womanly curves.  He brushed back her hair.  He knew what he would find.  One lone tendril of hair clinging to her neck.  This was what inspired him.  She was the live version of his wine label.  

As much as he wanted to linger in the warmth of her bed, he had work to do. Quietly, he crept out from under the covers, slipped on his clothes, and using the fire escape, went home.


Claire woke up and stretched, feeling her body lengthen.  She rolled over onto her back and snuggled up against Jamie, lying on his stomach and snoring lightly.  One arm was flung over his head across the pillow, giving her access to the long line of his body.  God, he was a furnace.  She’d never slept better than with him keeping the Scottish chill from her sheets.

She blinked, and noticed there was a new pair of turtle doves above her head. When had he done that?  

Slipping from bed she grabbed her robe and padded into the kitchen to make coffee.  She noticed right away that there was more of everything, from another set of gold rings, to more paper chains of Ladies and Lords, to geese, swans and another partridge.  The white box on her counter made her smile. When she opened it she had to laugh.  Two pear turnovers.  He’d included himself this morning.

As the coffee brewed Claire checked her phone.

Twenty-two text messages. Five voice mails.  

Her hands shook.  The events of the day before came flooding back. She’d pushed the ugliness with Randall out of her mind last night, but here it was in the bright light of day, forcing her to face whatever consequences may come.  

Claire pushed the button to listen to the first voice mail.


It was the scream that woke him. He pushed upright, still disoriented.

He heard the sound of feet pounding into the room and just had time to look over his shoulder to see a flash of bare leg, a streak of a bright blue robe, and curls galore before he felt the weight hit him.  He flopped back down, breath whooshing out of him as Claire landed on top of him.  

“Easy, Sassenach!”

She straddled his back and leaned over to place her face next to his on the pillow.  

“Jamie.”  Her eyes were bright, and her grin wide.  “Jamie, he’s been suspended.  He’s going before the Ethics Committee!”

Jamie tried to roll over to focus on what she was saying, but the weight of her pinned him down.  He blinked hard.  “Randall?” he asked.

“Yes!” Claire was triumphant. “Jamie!  We’ve won!” 

She began to get emotional as she talked.  “All those nights being worked to death.  All that abuse he threw at us.  All those times he made me doubt myself, made me feel incompetent. All those poor patients he hurt.” She half-laughed, half-cried. “It’s over.  His career is basically shattered.”

“But how?”  Jamie asked.  

Claire slid off him, and snuck back under the covers. She’d forgotten to tell him at the party last night, and when they got home…well, they had other things on their minds. She filled him in on everything.

“And the best part, Jamie? The best part is that I am off until after the New Year.  Apparently they have proof he meddled with scheduling.  I’ve logged so much overtime because of that sadist that they’re giving me a nice little bonus check and time in lieu for the holidays.  I have the next 2 weeks off!”

Jamie felt a smile tug at his lips, but checked it.  Two weeks.  Christmas and Hogmanay off.   “So. What will ye do wi’ yer time, Sassenach?”

Claire looked at Jamie with a hint of confusion.  “I’d hope to spend it with you.” she said, slowly.

He let a hint of a smile grow.  “Good. How do ye feel about takin’ a wee trip then?”

Claire closed the space between them.  Biting her lip, she looked up at him. “What did you have in mind?”

Jamie dropped his gaze and took a deep breath.  He’d never done this.  Never brought a woman there.  But after last night he realized that there needed to honesty between them.  He needed to show her what he wanted and what it took to really be committed.  If he wanted Claire to learn to communicate, he could not be coy.  He rolled over on top of her and ran a finger through her riotous curls.

“Lallybroch,” he said. “Come home wi’ me for Christmas.”


Christmas morning was not what Claire imagined.  Or had ever experienced. Just before dawn she found herself in front of a tree that Jamie, Ian and Murtagh had cut down two days prior, the smell of the Fraser fir as strong now as it was in the woods behind the estate.  

Lallybroch was bigger than she imagined.  So much land. So much house. The fact that it was ‘technically’ his shocked her.  Who knew lairds and landowners still existed? But here, titles weren’t important. Family was all that mattered.

The two toddlers who accompanied them on their Christmas tree hunt were adorable and clearly in love with their Uncle.  And Jamie? He was ten times sexier when playing with wee Jamie and little Maggie.  Claire had never felt so much emotion watching him walk with his nephew on his shoulders through the woods, or cutting Maggie’s portion into smaller bites at Christmas Eve dinner. When he held baby Katherine against his chest, swaying gently, she all but melted at the sight of him.  

Her heart was too full.  As the children’s feet pounded down the hallway outside their bedroom, Claire woke to see the last set of turtle doves hanging above their bed.  She teared up at the fact that Jamie had now completed the entire set.  She hadn’t caught him setting them up once.  She knew he had been up to something yesterday when she knocked on the study door and wee Jamie had opened it a crack to say, “Unca Jamie said he canna see ye now. But bring back cookies later an’ I’ll let ye in.” Then shut the door firmly in her face.

Claire rolled over and embraced the man who, in the span of two months, had become her best friend, her confidant, her lover, her soulmate.  She thought back to dinner the first night when Mrs. Crook asked what Claire did for a living, and Jamie encouraged her to tell the family of her plans to be a surgeon. She noticed Jenny’s raised eyebrow at her brother, and watched Jamie shake his head at Jenny as if to say, “Not going to be a problem.”  It meant everything to her to see that exchange.  

Jamie gathered Claire to him.  “Happy Christmas, mo graidh,” he whispered, stubble rubbing her cheek, his voice heavy with sleep.  

“Happy Christmas, my love.” Claire captured his lips and felt him smile through the kiss.  “When did you hang my doves?”

“When ye were snorin’ so loud as to wake the dead last night.”

Claire pinched Jamie’s arse, and laughed when he jumped.  

Jenny banged on the heavy oak door.  “How long does it take a person to dress?  Unless ye want two wee gomerals jumping on yer bed, I suggest ye get downstairs fast.”

They drank strong coffee, ate warm scones, and watched the kids tear through their gifts.  Claire was glad she had insisted they go to the Edinburgh Christmas market before leaving town.  She was not going to meet Jamie’s family empty handed.  Wee Jamie loved the wooden trains Claire had bought him, Maggie hadn’t put down the soft handmade doll, Jenny couldn’t stop stroking the oversized cashmere scarf, and Ian loved the crafted beer that she found in Jamie’s local.  

She had a harder time choosing for Murtagh, but Jamie talked of how his godfather enjoyed the outdoors, so she settled on a simple flat cap that he popped on his head right away.  The dour man actually smiled at her in thanks. Even Mrs. Crook seemed pleased with the small tea pot Claire chose for her. She said it was perfect for an “afternoon cuppa”.

Claire’s heart swelled when she opened the Fraser tartan blanket from Jenny and Ian.  Being gifted the family plaid made her feel accepted, as if she belonged there, among this deep-rooted Scottish family.  It was hard for her to imagine that she, nomad Claire, might have actually found someone to call her own, someone to cheer her on, to worry after her, to love her.  She wasn’t sure if she would be able to be what Jamie wanted and needed all the time, but she was more than willing to try.  She was more than willing to try to live up to the expectations of this family.  

Claire was suddenly nervous.  She wanted to give Jamie his gift but second thoughts crowded her mind.  What if he didn’t like it?  She’d found it a while ago, the second day he’d surprised her with his turtle doves.  She’d been wandering around the Christmas market shopping for Mary and Geillis when she came across an antique tent filled with brooches, blades and tartans. She ventured an ask and when the little man dug deep in a box for it, she couldn’t believe her luck. She was raised by an archaeologist after all.  She knew a few things.  The small sgian dhu had the Fraser crest on it, and the horn handle had a distinct Viking pattern.  It was authentic, and expensive.  Even though doubts still plagued her mind, she’d bought it.   

Jamie drew his thumb over the handle.  He traced his finger over the Fraser crest.  Je Suis Prest.  Slowly, he drew the blade from its small scabbard, mindful of all the Fraser hands that would have done the same across generations. He couldn’t imagine how she knew he would love this.  He raised his eyebrows.  

“It really wasn’t that hard, Fraser.  You’re flat is filled with history books, after all.”

He laughed.  The fact that she’d taken notice pleased him.  So did the fact that she honoured his family, and his highland heritage with this artifact.  Did she know they pledged oaths on their dirks in the old days?  She’d pierced his heart the day she walked out on him.  He silently made a pledge of his own, May this blade always remind me to love and honour this woman, to be faithful and loyal to her.

They stared at each other a long moment until Wee Jamie popped up between them.  

He held up an unmarked white box from under the tree.  “Is dis fer me?” he asked.  Jamie jumped.

“No, lad.  Here.  Give tha’ to yer Uncle Jamie, aye?” The young boy handed it over and Jamie looked at his sister.  Her eyes widened in silent understanding. She gathered up Murtagh and the kids to take them to the kitchen for something to eat. Kicking Ian as she passed and jerking her head towards the door, they all departed and left Jamie and Claire alone. Jamie held the white box gently in his hands.  His face was thoughtful, serious.  Claire waited. Finally he stood up and carried the gift to her.    

Claire took it, and looked at Jamie, searching his eyes.  She pulled the gold bow, and slowly lifted the lid.  Inside was the rest of her Twelve Days of Christmas.  Except for the turtle doves, it was all in there.  A Partridge, fat French hens, long-necked swans, ladies, lords, all of it.  Claire slid to the floor so she could lay each one out with Jamie sitting across from her.  At the very bottom of the box were twelve perfect drums, each with their own set of sticks. She lifted one, and marveled at its intricacies.  That’s when she saw it.   A letter on the bottom of each drum.  Hand written in his distinctive draft lettering.  An L.  Then a U. An E.  Claire was puzzled.  She looked at Jamie, a question in her eyes.  

“Keep going,” he whispered.

Pulling them all out she turned them upside down and tried to make sense of the letters.  She arranged and rearranged.  When she finally put it together, she gasped.  

“This goes with it,” Jamie said, his voice rough with emotion.  He produced another small box with the same gold ribbon from the pocket of his sleep pants.

Claire’s hands shook as she opened the package.  He’d surprised her again. The long silver chain was delicate and fine.  As she lifted it out of the box she held it up so that the pendant swung between her and Jamie.  She blinked back the tears.  “It’s beautiful, Jamie.”  

“It’s an exact replica.” he said. “I had it made from the antique one Jenny keeps in an old trunk. It’s the original key to Lallybroch.”  

The tears spilled over.  The old fashioned key had a fleur-de-lis bow, a long, delicate shank, and two blades.  Claire was touched beyond words.  Jamie was offering her a home.  And not just any home but this home, this place that helped shape and define the man in front of her. The man who loved her fiercely, made her body sing, and chose to support her in her dreams. This man who healed her emotionally as much as she healed him physically.  He was giving her the key to his heart.  He was giving her himself.  He was her home now. And with the simple words on the drums, drums that beat like a heart, he gave her the gift of his one true love.  

He slipped the chain over her head, hands shaking slightly.  The key settled right over her heart.    

“Well?” he said, and gestured to the drums.  

She took his face in her hands, and rubbed his chin gently.  “Yes,” she said. “Yes, a thousand times, yes!”

Twelve days.  He’d only had twelve days to prove his true love, and he’d done it.  He’d proven to Claire that she was his one and only.  From the moment she stepped into his life, he knew he wanted her. When she wept in his arms that day on the stairs, he knew he loved her.

Jamie breathed a sigh of relief into his kiss.  A kiss they shared over his final piece of artistry that said, quite simply,

W I L L U M A R R Y M E.

chained-to-the-mirror  asked:

Hello, how are you today? How is John? :) Don't be angry but I saw a swan today and thought of you. That's because John made me think of you as a bird, momentarily. It was a beautiful swan, though! I also saw geese and didn't think of you at all, which I'm sure you're pleased to hear ;)

That whole swan discussion was ridiculous. Anyway, I’m doing well, and John is, too. He seemed to have had a good session with Alvaro today, judging by his mood. I’m glad.