the extraordinary child

2

It’s no easy task being an ordinary parent to an extraordinary child. I failed in that task. And because of my prejudices, I failed you. I am haunted by how things might have turned out differently if I had been more willing to hear your side of things. For me, it’s the end. For you, a chance to grow old and someday do better with your own child than I did with mine. It’s for that child that I give you my ring. I don’t ask for your forgiveness or for you to forget. I ask only that you believe this: whether you are now reading this as a human or as a vampire, I love you all the same, as I’ve always loved you and always will. 

the moon: the quintessential mother figure, a swelling stomach shaped like the moon, cradling a baby, a lamp in your eyes guiding you into her arms, darling come home she whispers

jupiter: bellowing laughter emanating from the biggest mansion in the land, inside an overweight man eating an icecream cake for breakfast, he is dressed in every colour of the rainbow, philanthropic and generous, the more of his endless money he gives to others the more jovial he becomes

mercury: androgynous twins, handsome and young, mischievous and wicked quick, playing tricks, vanishing, and lighter than air. they were there in a moment and gone in the next, but you can hear the chatter in the ether

neptune: a siren of the sea, a mermaid rising from the ocean singing her sweet song, follow me child into my extraordinary world, come dear child i will give you everything you ever wanted… and you find her among the mist, everything is not what it seems…

saturn: an old wizard holding an hourglass in a library of knowledge and books. he strokes his long beard as he considers and contemplates, he is draped in a robe of glory, his cottage resting on the tallest mountaintop

venus: the deepest spell of beauty you see reflected in the face of others

mars: a woman with embers radiating from the tips of her hair, her sword raised as she guards a lava pool, her heartbeat echoing in the air, her lips painted scarlet, her spirit ready for battle

Iulia Hasdeu Castle: The Eerie Romanian Castle Designed by a Ghost

In 1888, Romanian intellectual Bogdan Petriceicu Hasdeu’s daughter Iulia died at the age of 18, leaving him devastated.

Iulia Hasdeu’s early death significantly altered the course of Bodgan’s life. In the years after she passed, he dedicated much of his time, energy, and wealth into remembering and memorializing his daughter. Hasdeu was inspired by the Spiritism movement, through which he claimed he was able to communicate with Iulia beyond the grave.

Iulia, named after her mother, was born in November of 1869. She was an extraordinary child from an early age. Iulia was gifted in music and languages; by 11 she had graduated from St. Sava Gymnasium and the Music Academy of Bucharest, having studied both piano and voice.

By her early teens, Iulia had mastered seven languages, and she continued her secondary education at the S?vign? College of Paris. Her peers and professors considered her to be a genius, as she excelled in academia as well as drawing, painting, piano, and singing. She also wrote poems and short stories; a collection of her work was published after her death.

At the age of 16, Iulia began studying in the Faculty of Letters and Philosophy at La Sorbonne in Paris. She was a dedicated pupil, and the pride of her father’s life.

A month before she turned 19, while working on her doctoral thesis, Iulia was suddenly stricken with–and passed away from–tuberculosis. Her distraught father built her a temple in the family vault at the Bellu Cemetery in Bucharest.

But this monument wasn’t enough for Bogdan Hasdeu.

The next “temple” that Hasdeu dedicated to Iulia took the form of a castle, located in the country town of Campina. Hasdeu and his wife were visiting friends in the summer of 1893 when they saw the property, and decided it would be the ideal place to build a shrine to their daughter. They purchased the land and began the planning process immediately.

The head architect on the project, Hasdeu claimed, was none other than Iuelia Hasdeu herself.

Hasdeu said that Iulia had been communicating with him in short bursts, giving him plans for the castle’s design. Special attention was paid to what Iulia considered “magic” numbers, 3 and 7. There are three towers, three rooms underground, and staircases made of seven steps each. Other details include a massive stone door entrance, hung on a diamond bearing. On either side of the door are stone thrones, on which rest two female sphinxes; above the door is the “eye of the world,” as well as the date “July 2,” which Hasdeu used as a symbolic representation for his wife and daughter–the two Iulias.

The castle has been described as deeply spooky; there are rooms designed specifically for spiritualist rituals, complete with seats for attending ghosts. Many claim that Hasdeu was not using it for memorializing Iulia at all, but rather for worshiping Satan. Others report seeing Iulia’ spirit, haunting the castle to this day, dressed in white and clutching daisies.

Whether its origins were sinister or merely sentimental, the Iulia Hasdeu Castle today stands as a museum, where visitors can see Hasdeu family memorabilia, including furniture, photographs, and original manuscripts.

5

“Elena, it’s no easy task being an ordinary parent to an extraordinary child. I failed in that task. And because of my prejudices, I failed you. I’m haunted by how things might have played out differently if I’d been more willing to hear your side of things. For me, it’s the end. For you, a chance to grow old and someday do better with your own child than I did with mine. It’s for that child that I give you my ring. I don’t ask for your forgiveness or for you to forget. I ask only that you believe this. Whether you are now reading this as a human or as a vampire, I love you all the same. As I’ve always loved you, and always will.” - John

Geomantic Tablet

Numerous divinatory arts have been practiced by Muslim societies across the centuries. Since God has absolute control of the universe and of all that we see and understand, omens such as dreams could be recognized as God-given signs.

The ‘Science of the Sand’ (ilm al-raml) is a divinatory technique that interprets a series of figures made of clusters of dots or lines. It can be used to answer all manner of questions from the fidelity of a spouse to the gender of an unborn child. This extraordinary and unique Geomantic Tablet made in Syria (639 AH / 1241–2), made of brass, silver and gold, offered an alternative way to produce geomantic figures normally traced manually in the sand.

You can see it on display, until next weekend, in our Power and Protection exhibition which explores Islamic art and the supernatural.

Images © Trustees of the British Museum

2

Elena,

It’s no easy task being an ordinary parent to an extraordinary child. I failed in that task. And because of my prejudices, I failed you. I’m haunted by how things might have played out differently if I’d been more willing to hear your side of things. For me, it’s the end. And you, a chance to grow old and someday do better with your own child than I did with mine. It’s for that child that I give you my ring. I don’t ask for your forgiveness or for you to forget. I ask only that you believe this:

Whether you are now reading this as a human or as a vampire, I love you all the same. As I’ve always loved you and always will.

— John

the moon: the quintessential mother figure, a swelling stomach shaped like the moon, cradling a baby, a lamp in your eyes guiding you into her arms, darling come home she whispers

jupiter: bellowing laughter emanating from the biggest mansion in the land, inside an overweight man eating an icecream cake for breakfast, he is dressed in every colour of the rainbow, philanthropic and generous, the more of his endless money he gives to others the more jovial he becomes

mercury: androgynous twins, handsome and young, mischievous and wicked quick, playing tricks, vanishing, and lighter than air. they were there in a moment and gone in the next, but you can hear the chatter in the ether

neptune: a siren of the sea, a mermaid rising from the ocean singing her sweet song, follow me child into my extraordinary world, come dear child i will give you everything you ever wanted… and you find her among the mist, everything is not what it seems…

saturn: an old wizard holding an hourglass in a library of knowledge and books. he strokes his long beard as he considers and contemplates, he is draped in a robe of glory, his cottage resting on the tallest mountaintop

venus: the deepest spell of beauty you see reflected in the face of others

At the age of five, Sarah Forbes Bonetta Davies, born into a Royal, West African dynasty, was taken to England and presented to Queen Victoria as a “gift” from one royal family to another. A unique and admired figure in history, she spent her life between the British royal household and her homeland in Africa.

Sarah Forbes Bonetta Davies, a West African Yoruba girl, was captured by the King of Dahomey in 1848 during a “slave-hunt” war in which her parents were killed. In 1850, when she was around eight years old, she was rescued by Captain Frederick E Forbes of the Royal Navy whilst he was visiting Dahomey as an emissary of the British Government. Forbes convinced King Ghezo of Dahomey to give Sarah to Queen Victoria saying: “She would be a present from the King of the Blacks to the Queen of the Whites.” The young girl was subsequently given the name Forbes as well as that of his ship, the ‘Bonetta’.

She returned to England with Forbes who presented her to Queen Victoria, who in turn gave her over to the Church Missionary Society to be educated. Sarah suffered from fragile health and in 1851 she returned to Africa to attend the Female Institution in Freetown, Sierra Leone. When she was 12 years old, Queen Victoria commanded that Sarah return to England, where she was placed under the charge of Mr and Mrs Schon at Chatham.

Queen Victoria was so impressed by the girl’s natural regal manner and her gift for academic studies, Literature, Art and Music that she gave her an allowance for her welfare and Sarah became a regular visitor to Windsor Castle. Sarah’s genius became admired throughout the royal court and she continued to outshine her tutors with her advanced abilities in all studies.

At the age of 18, Sarah received a proposal from James Pinson Labulo Davies, a 31 year old Yoruba businessman of considerable wealth who was living in Britain. She initially refused his proposal and it is reported that in order to persuade her to accept Sarah was sent to live with two elderly ladies in Brighton whose house she described as a “desolate little pig sty”.

Queen Victoria sanctioned Sarah to be married in St Nicholas Church in Brighton in August 1862. The wedding party, which arrived from West Hill Lodge, Brighton in ten carriages and pairs of grays, was made up of “White ladies with African gentlemen, and African ladies with White gentlemen” There were sixteen bridesmaids. The newlyweds moved back to West Africa and Sarah was baptised at a church in the town of Badagry, a former slave port. They settled in Lagos where her husband became a member of the Legislative Council from 1872-74 (in which year Lagos Colony was for a time amalgamated into the Gold Coast).

Shortly after her marriage, Sarah gave birth to a daughter and was granted permission by the Queen to name the child Victoria – the Queen also became her Godmother.

Sarah visited the Queen in 1867 with her daughter then returned to Lagos and had two more children. Later, upon Sarah’s death the Queen wrote in her diary: “Saw poor Victoria Davies, my black godchild, who learnt this morning of the death of her dear mother”. So proud was Queen Victoria of Sarah’s daughter, that when she passed her music examination, teachers and children had one day holiday. Throughout her life Sarah had a long lasting cough that was caused by the climate change between Africa and Britain. In 1880, suffering from tuberculosis, she went to convalesce in Madeira off of the coast of West Africa. She died, around the age of 40, in 1880 and was buried in Funchal, Madiera.

Her daughter Victoria was given an annuity by the Queen and she continued to visit the royal household throughout her life. In his journal Captain Forbes gave an account of his mission with relation to Miss Bonetta.

“I have only to add a few particulars about my extraordinary present The African child”. In a former portion of this journal I have mentioned the Okeadon war; one of the captives of this dreadful slave-hunt was this interesting girl.

It is usual to reserve the best born for the high behest of royalty and the immolation on the tombs of the diseased nobility. For one of these ends she had been detained at court for two years: proving, by her not having been sold to slave dealer, that she was of a good family.

So extraordinary a present would have been at least burden, had I not the conviction that, in consideration of the nature of the service I had performed, the government would consider her as the property of the crown.

To refuse, would have been to have signed her death warrant which, probably, would have been carried into execution forthwith. Immediately on arriving…

Of her own history she was only a confused idea. Her parents were decapitated; her brother and sisters she knows not what their fate might have been .

For her age supposed to be eight years. She is a perfect genius; she now speaks English well, and has a great talent for music. She has won the affections, with but few exceptions, of all who have known her, she is far in advance of any white child of her age, in aptness of learning, and strength of mind and affection.”

8

TVD TOP 10 RECURRING/MINOR/DEAD CHARACTERS (as voted by my followers)
→ 10. John Gilbert
“Elena… it’s no easy task being an ordinary parent to an extraordinary child. I failed in that task. And because of my prejudices, I failed you. I’m haunted by how things might have played out differently. If I’d been more willing to hear your side of things. For me, it’s the end. For you, a chance to grow old and someday do better with your own child than I did with mine. It’s for that child that I give you my ring. I don’t ask for your forgiveness or for you to forget. I ask only that you believe this. Whether you are now reading this as a human or as a vampire, I love you all the same as I’ve always loved you, and always will. John.”

the moon: the quintessential mother figure, a swelling stomach shaped like the moon, cradling a baby, a lamp in your eyes guiding you into her arms, darling come home she whispers

jupiter: bellowing laughter emanating from the biggest mansion in the land, inside an overweight man eating an icecream cake for breakfast, he is dressed in every colour of the rainbow, philanthropic and generous, the more of his endless money he gives to others the more jovial he becomes

mercury: androgynous twins, handsome and young, mischievous and wicked quick, playing tricks, vanishing, and lighter than air. they were there in a moment and gone in the next, but you can hear the chatter in the ether

neptune: a siren of the sea, a mermaid rising from the ocean singing her sweet song, follow me child into my extraordinary world, come dear child i will give you everything you ever wanted… and you find her among the mist, everything is not what it seems…

saturn: an old wizard holding an hourglass in a library of knowledge and books. he strokes his long beard as he considers and contemplates, he is draped in a robe of glory, his cottage resting on the tallest mountaintop

venus: the deepest spell of beauty you see reflected in the face of others

2

Elena                                                                                                                                                          It’s no easy task being an ordinary parent to an extraordinary child. I failed in that task. And because of my prejudices, I failed you. I’m haunted by how things might have played out differently. If I’d been more willing to hear your side of things. For me, it’s the end. For you, a chance to grow old and someday do better with your own child than I did with mine. I don’t ask for your forgiveness or for you to forget. I ask only that you believe this. Whether you are now reading this as a human or as a vampire, I love you all the same as I’ve always loved you, and always will.

                                                                                                                    John

A small Yuuya, realising being a Dove agent is scary business, after accidentally ending up in the middle of a gun fight right after his training began.

10

the vampire diaries appreciation week
day 4 📖  favourite episode — 2x21 “The Sun Also Rises”
Elena,
It’s no easy task being an ordinary parent to an extraordinary child. I failed in that task. And because of my prejudices, I failed you. I am haunted by how things might have turned out differently if I had been more willing to hear your side of things. For me it’s the end. For you, a chance to grow old and someday do better with your own child than I did with mine. It’s for that child that I give you my ring. I don’t ask for your forgiveness or for you to forget. I ask only that you believe this
whether you are now reading this as a human or as a vampire, I love you all the same, as I’ve always loved you and always will. Love,
John

Sweet Baby James (Pt. 4)

Pairing: Bucky x Reader

MASTERLIST

A/N: We’ve reached 2700 followers! Thanks for reading/voting/messaging everyone! I love you guys!

Previous Parts: SBJ Masterlist

Previously: A small hand reached up to touch your cheek and you smiled. Little James’ bright eyes met yours with a small smile. “Keep you safe.” he said. “Promised Big James.”  You gathered the toddler into your arms, holding him close as his small arms encircled your neck. Bucky had told you not to worry, but you had to find him. You needed to find him.

Keep reading

Can we just take a second to appreciate David?

I know in Lilo and Stitch, most of the people admire Nani, because she let everything fall to be there for her sister, trying to be a mother for her. Even though she has her flaws, she does not let anybody make Lilo feel wrong. Of which everything is right, but a huge part of my respect goes to David to. David is a really attractive guy, with his muscles and his face and stuff. Yet he had fallen for Nani, a woman most men would have avoided. Why? because she has to care for a child, like a mother. These two won’t be able to go out much, they can’t have a teenager romance, like everybody else does. Nani expects David to accept her only with Lilo, and is super happy that David like Lilo and she likes him. Yet, she is a woman in her twenties maybe, with an extremely extraordinary child on her side, and an alien family, yet he still tries to get Nani, he loves her and the thing doesn’t annoy or disturb him. He would give everything to save Nani, or Lilo or even Stitch. He is just that kind of amazing guy. And I think he does not get enough love.

Shifted - Part 4, Chapter 6

Every Tuesday I’ll be posting a chapter from my brand new AU story. The premise is simple - what if Claire had gotten pregnant with Brianna a month or two earlier in the story, and she and Jamie had re-evaluated their priorities and decided that the cause was lost, and they were able to slip away from the army and quietly return to Lallybroch?

Previous installments…

Part 4 - The Decision

Lallybroch, Autumn 1752

Chapter 6


Jamie sighed as he and Murtagh crested the final hill before the big house. Ten days since he’d left – ten days away from Claire and Brianna. It was time well spent with several tenant families who rarely made it to the house for Quarter Day; he’d lent the service of his hands to help them prepare for winter, tuck away the remainder of their harvest, and mend tools. And have many honest conversations with them about their obligations as tenants – both to the estate and to Jamie personally.

Every night as he slept by the fire, wrapped in a grubby blanket and wedged against his godfather, he’d dreamed of Claire heavy with child. He’d been so fascinated with the changes in her body while she carried Brianna – and remembered how he’d almost drowned himself in her during that time, to forget the pain and heartache of the days immediately following Culloden. He’d felt like such a man then – such a man that could get his extraordinary wife with child, and then watch her body grow to accommodate it.

He didn’t feel as much of a man now – now that they’d been trying in earnest for another child. She’d told him that in her own time, there were specialized physicians whom one could consult if there were difficulties in conceiving a child. These physicians could tell whether it was the man or woman who was the primary cause of the problem.

Jamie refused to believe that it was Claire whose body could not conceive a child. It had to be him – had to be his seed. Though he did wonder whether their bodies were somehow…incompatible, given that they came from different times. Of course that could not be fully true – Brianna was living proof of that – but it did strike him as odd that Claire had not conceived again since Brianna’s birth.

He’d broached the subject with Ian about a week before his departure. They’d been walking the potato fields, surveying the soil and noting which plots to harvest before the ground got too frozen. A safe enough distance from the house – and his wife and sister.

“Ian, a charaid?”

Ian kept writing in the small ledger, not looking up at his brother-in-law. “Hmm? You think this vine is too small to harvest?”

Jamie swallowed and looked down at his muddy boots. “I’ve a question to ask ye, and I trust you to keep it between us.”

That got his attention. Ian’s dark brows shot up. “Oh, aye?” he said softly, skeptically. “What is it, then? Did you get stopped by the English again, when ye were out on your own? I canna cover for you, not after the last time Claire found out.”

Jamie shrugged. “No, it’s not that. Only – it’s to do wi’ bairns. And Claire.”

“What about it? Ye’ve already got the one bairn – and I ken weel that Claire’s her mother. Ye havena –”

No, Ian,” Jamie interrupted. “Dinna even think that way. Claire is it for me – always has been, always will be.”

Ian shifted his weight, digging his peg deeper into the ground. “What is it then, man?”

Jamie licked his lips. “You and Jenny – ye’ve got the four bairns now. All about two years apart from each other.”

“Aye?” Ian’s voice was patient, though he clearly had no idea where this conversation was going.

“And ye’ll notice that Claire and I have only the one.”

“I did notice. So?”

Jamie rubbed a hand over his eyes. “So. Did you and Jenny ever have to really…to really try for the bairns? Or did it just…happen?”

Ian hobbled over to Jamie and touched his elbow, lightly. “Is that what’s been eating at ye these past weeks, then?”

Jamie swallowed. “Ye’ll ken it’s different between Claire and I. She comes from a place where women decide with their husbands when to have bairns, and I’ve respected her wishes for as long as we’ve been wed. We’ve – we’ve decided to have another bairn now. I want it, she wants it. Brianna would want it.” He sighed. “I dinna know how long we’ll have to be trying. Both times before it just – happened.”

“Both times?”

Jamie’s fist clenched, hard. He raised his head to meet Ian’s kind gaze. “I’ve never told ye – never told Jenny, even. When Claire and I were in France, after she rescued me from Randall – she was wi’ child.”

Ian’s eyes widened. “She was?”

Jamie pressed his lips together. “Aye, she was. We found out when I was recovering in the abbey – and I canna tell ye how much joy it brought us. How it brought us back to each other.” He sighed, hard. “But Claire had a very rough time of it, wi’ the bairn. And I did something verra foolish in Paris – gave her a great fright. Between that and how fragile she was – she lost the baby.”

Ian dropped the ledger to the ground and gathered his closest friend into a bear hug. Jamie clung to him, desperately trying to keep a hold on his emotions.

“Hush. Hush, a ruaidh.”

Jamie took several shallow breaths. “Claire gave birth to her, though she was stillborn. We had a daughter. Our first daughter. I never saw her, Ian. I never saw my firstborn child wi’ my own eyes.”

Ian drew back and held Jamie by the shoulders. “Surely ye canna blame yerself for that, Jamie? These things happen wi’ bairns sometimes.”

Jamie nodded. “Aye, I ken that now. And having Brianna wi’ me every day – I rarely think of that time anymore – rarely think of Faith anymore.”

“And still ye want to have another child.”

“Aye, I do. We do. Only – we never had to really try for it before. And now that we are trying, I dinna ken how long we need to. How long are we supposed to try for, then? How long until I know whether it’s working?”

Ian sighed. “Ye think I know, man?”

Jamie shrugged. “I had a word wi’ Grannie MacNab about it the last time I was up at their croft. She told me which herbs to take that would make my – make my seed stronger.”

“And have ye done it, then? Does Claire know?”

“Aye, I have – and of course Claire doesna know. A mouthful of greens every morning, and a rosary every night. What else can I do?”

Ian bent to retrieve his ledger, and dusted it off gently. “I think ye’re doing just fine, Jamie. Ye canna do anything else – just keep loving yer wife, and leave the rest to God.”

Murtagh brought his horse alongside Jamie and nudged his knee. “Wake up, lad. Can ye not see yer wee lassie yelling and waving in the dooryard?”

Sure enough, Brianna was waving and shouting, and the dogs were barking with her. The setting sunbeams lit her hair like fire. Jamie spurred his horse to a gallop, smiling widely in the horse’s final strides to the house.

Originally posted by glitterxspite


the moon: the quintessential mother figure, a swelling stomach shaped like the moon, cradling a baby, a lamp in your eyes guiding you into her arms, darling come home she whispers

jupiter: bellowing laughter emanating from the biggest mansion in the land, inside an overweight man eating an icecream cake for breakfast, he is dressed in every colour of the rainbow, philanthropic and generous, the more of his endless money he gives to others the more jovial he becomes

mercury: androgynous twins, handsome and young, mischievous and wicked quick, playing tricks, vanishing, and lighter than air. they were there in a moment and gone in the next, but you can hear the chatter in the ether

neptune: a siren of the sea, a mermaid rising from the ocean singing her sweet song, follow me child into my extraordinary world, come dear child i will give you everything you ever wanted… and you find her among the mist, everything is not what it seems…

saturn: an old wizard holding an hourglass in a library of knowledge and books. he strokes his long beard as he considers and contemplates, he is draped in a robe of glory, his cottage resting on the tallest mountaintop

venus: the deepest spell of beauty you see reflected in the face of others