the shimmering light

anonymous asked:

*shyly whispers* do u think u could do another Greek Mythology story~

“Your tapestries are so fine,” the merchant says in wonder, “that you must be blessed by the goddess Athena.”

Arachne tosses her head, braided hair falling over her shoulder like an obsidian waterfall, “What’s Athena got to do with it? My hands wove these, not hers.”

The merchant blanches and looks to the sky, as if expecting Zeus himself to smite them for blasphemy. Personally, she thinks the king of the gods has better thing to do with his time. “Ah,” he says weakly, “I suppose.”

He pays her for her wares and she leaves, almost immediately bumping into a hunched old woman with grey eyes. “Do you not owe Athena thanks for your talent?” she croaks, gnarled hands curled over a cane.

Arachne is not stupid, but she is foolish. They will tell tales of it. She looks into those grey eyes and declares, “Athena should thank me, since my talents earn her so much praise.”

She pushes past her and keeps walking, ignoring the goddess in humans skin as she disappears into the crowd.

They will tell tales of her hubris. They will all be true.

~

The next day she bumps into the same old woman at the market. Everything goes downhill from there.

“Know your place, mortal,” Athena says, grey eyes narrowed. There is a crowd around them, and Arachne could save herself, could walk away unscathed, and all she has to do is say her weaving is inferior to that of a goddess.

She will not lie.

“I do,” she says coolly, “and in this matter, it is above you.”

She is not honest as a virtue, but as a vice.

Athena challengers her to a weaving contest. She accepts.

~

Gods are not so hard to find, if you know where to look.

“It’s a volcano,” the baker repeats, looking down at her coins, as if he feels guilty for taking money from someone who’s clearly not all there.

She grabs her bag of sweet breads and adds it to her pack before swinging it over her shoulders, “Yes, I know. Half a day’s walk, you said?”

“A volcano,” he insists, as if she did not hear him perfectly well the first dozen times.

“Thank you for your help,” she says. He’s shaking his head at her, but she knows what she’s doing.

She walks. She grows hungry, but does not touch the bread she paid for, and walks some more. The sun’s begun to set by the time she makes it to the base of the volcano. It’s tall, impossibly large, and for a moment the promise of defeat threatens to overwhelm her.

But Arachne does not believe in defeat, in loss. They will tell tales of her hubris. Those tales will be true.

She ties a scarf around her braids then hikes her skirt up and ties the material so it falls only to her thighs. She fits work roughened hands into the divots of cooled magma and begins her slow ascent.

~

The muscles in her legs and arms shake, and her hunger pains are almost as distracting. Her once white dress is dirt smeared and torn and sweat makes her itch as it covers her body and drips down her back.

“What are you doing?”

Arachne turns her head and bites back a scream, looking into one giant eye. The cyclops holds easily to the volcano’s edges, even though her hands are torn and bleeding. She swallows and says, “I heard you like honeyed bread. Is it true?”

The creature tilts his head to the side, baring his long fanged teeth at her. She thinks he might be smiling. “You’ve been climbing for hours. What do you want?”

“Is it true?” she repeats, refusing to flinch.

“Yes,” he says, looking at her the same way the baker had, “it’s true.”

“There’s some sweet bread in my pack, baked this morning,” she says, “it should still be soft.”

His hands are big enough and strong enough that it could probably squeeze her head like a grape. Instead he gently undoes her pack and reaches inside. The honey buns look comically small in his large hands, and he swallows half of them in one bite. He licks his fingers clean when he’s done, and his smile is just as terrifying the second time around. “I am Brontes. Why are you climbing my master’s volcano?”

“I’m the weaver Arachne,” she takes a deep breath, “I need your master’s help.”

~

They tell tales of Hephaestus’s ugliness.

They are not true.

He’s got a broad, angular face and short brown hair. His eyes are like amber set into his face, and his arms are huge, and he’s rippling muscle from the waist up. He has legs only to his knees. From there down his legs are bronze gears and golden wire, replacements for the legs destroyed when Hera threw him from Mount Olympus.

“Had your look, girl?” he asks, voice rough like he’s always a moment away from breaking into a coughing fit.

“Yes,” she says, and doesn’t turn away, keeps looking.

His lips quirk up at the corners, so it was the right move. The heat is even more oppressive inside the volcano, and all around him cyclopses work, forging oddly shaped metal that she can’t hope to understand. “You’ve gone to an awful lot of trouble to find me, girl. What do you want?”

She slides her pack off her shoulders and holds it out to the god, “I have a gift for your wife. I have woven her a cloak.”

He raises an eyebrow and doesn’t reach for the bag, “You believe something made with mortal hands could be worthy of the goddess of beauty?”

They will tell tales of her hubris.

“Yes.”

They will all be true.

With a gust of wind the oppressive heat of the volcano is swept away, leaving her chilled. In its place stands a woman – more than a woman. Aphrodite has skin like the copper of her husband’s machines and hair dark and thick and long. Her eyes are deepest, richest brown, piercing in their intelligence. People don’t tell tales of Aphrodite’s cleverness. That is because people are stupid.

“Let’s see it then,” she says, reaching inside the pack and pulling the cloak from its depths.

It unrolls beautifully. It’s made from the finest silks, and it shimmers in the light from the forges. The hem of the cloak is sea foam, speaking of Aphrodite’s beginning, and up along the cloak is intricate patterns it tells of her life, of her marriage and her worshippers and escapades, all with the detail of the most experienced artist and the reverence of her most devoted followers.

Her lips part in surprise and she slides it on, twirling like a child. “Gorgeous,” Hephaestus says, though Arachne knows he does not speak of the cloak. She doesn’t take offense.

The goddess smiles and Arachne’s heart pounds in her chest. She does her best to ignore it – Aphrodite is the goddess of love, after all. It is only expected. “Very well,” the goddess says, “you have my attention.”

Arachne swallows. Aphrodite’s attention is a heavy thing. “I have offended Athena,” she says, “She has challenged me to a weaving contest.”

Their faces somber. Hephaestus rubs the edge of a sleeve between his fingers and says, “Athena will lose such a contest, if judged fairly. She does not take loss well.”

“I know,” she says, “you are friendly with Hades, are you not?”

There are no tales of their friendship. But she’s staking her life on its existence, because why wouldn’t it exist – both of them even tempered, both shunned by Olympus, both happily married.

Gods hate being made to feel lesser. It is why they say Persephone was kidnapped, why they say Aphrodite cheats with Ares. It is why Athena will crush her when Arachne wins the weaving contest.

“Clever girl,” Hephaestus says, smiling.

Aphrodite stares at her reflection in a convenient piece of polished silver. Arachne assumes Hephaestus left if lying there for that express purpose. “Very well!” the goddess says, not looking at her, “when Athena sends you to the underworld, we will entrench upon our uncle for your release.” She turns on her heel and points a finger at her. Arachne blushes for no reason she can think of. “In return, you will weave me a gown, one equal to my own beauty.”

A gown as exquisite as the goddess of beauty. An impossible task.

They will tell tales of her hubris.

“I accept.”

They will all be true.

~

The contest goes as expected. Athena’s tapestry is lovely, but Arachne’s is lovelier.

The goddess’s face goes red in rage, and her grey eyes narrow. Arachne stands tall, ready to accept the death blow coming for her.

The blow comes.

Death does not.

~

She is an insect. Even if she can make it back to Hephaestus’s volcano, even if they can help her, they will not know it is her. She has no hope left, no course of action, she should just give up. But –

She doesn’t believe in defeat, in loss.

It was a terribly long journey on foot, that first time. It is even longer this time, although now she has eight legs instead of two. She makes it to the volcano, and creeps in between crevices, until she finds out a hollowed room, one with a sliver of sunlight and plenty of bugs to keep her fed.

Athena’s cruel joke of allowing her to weave will be her downfall. Her silk comes out a golden yellow color – it will look exquisite against Aphrodite’s copper skin.

~

It takes seven years for her to complete it. She hasn’t left this room in the volcano in all that time, and as soon as it’s done she scurries out back toward the village. She’s a large insect, but not that large.

She arrives just as the sun begins to rise, and leaves before the first rays have even touched the earth, her prize tied to her back with her own silk.

Arachne doesn’t return to her room. Instead she goes to the more popular parts of the volcano, hurries and runs around terrifying stomping feet until she finds who she’s looking for and scurries up his leg and onto his shoulder.

“Huh,” Brontes looks onto his shoulder and blinks. “What on earth are you?”

She cautiously skitters down his arm, waiting. He bends closer and lightly touches her back. “Is – is that a piece of a honey bun?”

She looks up at him, waiting. It’s her only chance, if he doesn’t remember, if he doesn’t understand –

His face slowly fills with a cautious kind of wonder. “Arachne?”  She jumps in place, being unable to nod, and Brontes cautiously cradles her in his massive hands, “We must find the Master immediately!”

She jumps down, landing in front of him and running forward. “Wait!” he calls, and she makes sure he’s running after her before skittering back to her corner of the cave. It’s almost too small for him to enter but he squeezes inside and breathes, “Oh.” He stares for several moments, and Arachne climbs her web and waits. Brontes shakes himself out of his reverie and uses his powerful wings to bellow, “MISTRESS APHRODITE!”

There’s that same breeze and she’s in the crevice with them, “What was so important, Brontes, that you had to yell?”

Arachne sees the exact moment that the goddess sees the gown, golden yellow and glimmering, made entirely of spider silk. “Beautiful,” she says, reaching out a hand to brush down the bodice. Her head then snaps up, “Brontes, where’s Arachne?”

She warms at that, that Aphrodite knew it was her weaving even though she hasn’t been seen in seven years.

They’ve told tales of her hubris.

They are all true.

Brontes points at the web, and Aphrodite steps over and holds out her hands. Arachne crawls onto the goddess’s palms. “Athena is more powerful than I am, I cannot undo her work,” she says, “but I know someone who can.”

Then they are in front of a river. A handsome young man stands there waiting with a boat. “Goddess Aphrodite,” he says, “we weren’t expecting you.”

“Thanatos,” she returns, “I need to see Persephone.”

The man’s face stays cool, and for a moment Arachne fears they will be refused and she will be stuck in this form forever. Then he smiles and says, “My lady is of course available for her favored niece.” He holds out a hand to help her onto the boat, “Please come with me.”

~

Arachne weaves a dress for Hades’s wife as a thank you, and returns to her volcano.

“I can take you somewhere else,” Aphrodite says, “you don’t have to hide here.”

Arachne pauses at her loom. She has lived in this volcano for seven years. It’s her home. “Would you like me to leave?” she asks instead.

Aphrodite scoffs, “Of course not! How could I dress myself without you here?” She’s wearing the spider silk dress Arachne spun for her, and she’s working on another for the goddess now. Aphrodite runs a gentle finger down Arachne’s cheek and for a moment she forgets to breathe. “You are the finest weaver to ever exist.”

She looks up at the goddess, “Then as the god of crafts and goddess of beautiful things, where else would I belong besides with you and Hephaestus?”

To declare your company equal to that of gods is the height of arrogance and blasphemy.

They tell tales of her hubris.

“An excellent point,” Aphrodite murmurs, and tucks a stray braid behind Arachne’s ear.

They are all true.

gods and monsters series part iii

Page 3

The ceremony begins!

Seeing Luna and her confidence helped Twi get herself together, ready to go through with this.

Ponies not seen: Trixie sitting next to Starlight as her plus one. the rest of Luna’s bridesmaids, the rest of the EQG mane 6 (Spike the actual dog remained home)

OCs from left to right:

Buggy Code

Barley

Nebula’s OC (I don’t actually remember his name)

Mist Dancer 

Collision Course; Voltron Legendary Defender AU: Dads of Marmora; gen; 5,300+ words; PG-13; mentions of violence, tiny hints of Ulaz/Thace, but so little you have to squint with a telescope or something

Credit for this AU goes to @drisrt and this amazing picture that inspired this story. Also some lines of the dialogue are taken from the Blades of Marmora episode of Voltron.

Posted on AO3, too.

Summary:

Keith gets adopted by the Galra empire rebellion, basically.

Keith has barely three years of life on his cells, has barely grown up to his Father’s knees and into his Mother’s laugh when he’s thrown into the first sense of flying, of fleeing, of his Father solemnly reading through the coordinates Keith doesn’t understand, that Keith thinks are just a pretty game of lights, lights that remind him of his Mom’s knife.

He’s holding it, holding onto it, tries to find the connection between the numbers and the faintest of glows, illuminating the insides of his fingers, misses how his Dad flinches when he asks: “When will Mom catch up to us?” already sleepy, already curling up beneath the safety straps of his seat.

Gently, his Father’s jacket is tucked around him and the scent is the lullaby that sings him into dazed, motionless dreams, the remnants of home, the flickers of the unknown.

(He sleeps through the harsh descent, the crib of his Father’s arms, the hushed ambush, the quietest of heists.)

He sleeps through it all.

Keep reading

Curious about auras? This article will hopefully explain the specifics of this peculiar phenomenon.

What’s an aura, anyways?

The term aura refers to an individual’s subtle energetic emanations. Auras aren’t visible to everyone, but plenty of people see them. They appear as a sphere of light or color around the body. 

The color, size, brightness, and other features of the aura depend on the nature of the person it belongs to. These things can vary based on mood. They can also relate to metabolic factors, magical activity, and many other things.

Many New Age writers say that the aura is energy in the scientific sense. This is a common misconception. No physicist has ever measured anything resembling auras as they’re commonly understood.

A few days ago, someone told me that they believed the aura was a human’s magnetic field. This isn’t true. The magnetic field of a human doesn’t act like an aura. It doesn’t change based on emotions or other things like that.

Others say it is something electrical, or related to quantum mechanics. The truth of the matter is that science can’t (yet) measure the aura in any way. Many are skeptical about its existence for this reason.

Still, many, many people have seen auras throughout history. To me, it’s a real phenomenon. Science may not understand it yet, but, for me, it’s real!

The energy that extends beyond our physical bodies is called the aura. The word “aura” is derived from Latin aere, meaning “air” or “gentle breeze.” The American Heritage Dictionary defines the aura as “an invisible breath, emanation, or radiation.” In metaphysics, the aura is seen as the human energy field, that portion of the subtle body that radiates out beyond the limits of the physical body.

Belanger, Michelle  A.. The Psychic Energy Codex: Awakening Your Subtle Senses (p. 117). Red Wheel Weiser. Kindle Edition.

Some gifted people see auras without trying. Also, many children see auras in early childhood. Often, this ability, if not cultivated, disappears as they grow up. Many magicians and witches develop the ability to see auras.

This involves a great deal of practice and effort. It’s worthwhile, but everyone is different. Not everyone will have the same aptitude to see auras. Some people can see only a little bit of the aura, like a vague mist. Others see brighter colors and light.

Everyone’s aura is different, too! Most witches and psychics believe this extends only few feet from the body. Size can and does vary, though. Some people may have an aura of only several inches. 

Others might have a very large aura. Size, color, brightness, and other features change throughout a person’s life. If you see a person’s aura at one point, expect it to change within hours, if not minutes. This reflects how dynamic people can be.

Auras in History

People have observed and recorded auras throughout time. It appears in many pieces of religious and spiritual artwork. Historically, auras are usually shown emanating from the body of holy men and women.

Christian artists often depict them surrounding saints. They appear in other cultures, as well. Medieval authors referred to the light surround a person’s head as the “aureole”. They called light around the body the “nimbus.“ These authors called the whole aura the “glory.”

In Scrying for Beginners, Donald Tyson writes about the auras shape in artwork. While many modern seers refer to the aura as a sphere, the ancients saw it differently. They believed that saints emanated two spheres that overlapped.

The glory is sometimes depicted in religious art as the vesica or vesica piscis, a lens-shaped figure formed by the overlap of two equal circles that pass through each other at their centers. Christ, the Virgin Mary, and other saints are often painted within this pointed oval, which is also called a mandorla (from the Italian word for "almond”).

Donald Tyson. Scrying For Beginners (For Beginners (Llewellyn’s)) (p. 200). Llewellyn - A. Kindle Edition.

During the occult revival of the late 19th and early 20th century, many people wrote about the aura. Theosophists and other occultists developed complex systems for understanding it. 

Madame Blavatsky and Walter Kilner believed there were distinct layers to the aura. They named them and sought to understand them.

As science merged with occultism, seers began to look for ways to measure the aura. There have been plenty of attempts. None were particularly fruitful.

Of note is “Kirlian Photography.” Symon and Valentina Kirlian developed this practice in 1940s Russia. It involves sending an electrical current through the individual.

A photographic plate records the resulting discharge. Later scientists argued that the image was more mundane. They believed the interaction of this electric field and ambient moisture caused it.

Today, most people seem to agree with that sentiment. Kirlian images recorded don’t behave in a manner consistent with how seers perceive the aura. For example, Kirlian images rarely change based on state of mind.

Despite many attempts, science still doesn’t understand the aura! For that reason, most people relegate it to the realm of metaphysics and occultism. I don’t have a problem with that.

I am supportive of science, but acknowledge that not everything is currently known. As a witch, I do believe in magick, for example. Magick itself isn’t understood or measurable by science. The aura isn’t, but I still find the concept useful.

Seeing the Aura

Over time, it has been evident that people can develop aura sight. I myself saw auras occasionally as a child. I did not have further experiences with this until I began studying magick, though. I don’t consider myself to have natural aura vision.

Still, I see auras in certain circumstances these days. It’s something I practiced and developed. While not everyone can develop this ability, most people can! The level of detail you see will vary, but why not try?

Now, I’ll give you my own method for inducing aura vision. It may or may not work for you. I have read that many other people found these techniques helpful, though.

It is best to begin by looking for your own aura. Some people do begin by working with a partner, though. For me, aura vision comes best when I’m a bit sleepy. I don’t have the focus for it when I’m completely exhausted, but a little sleepiness works well.

I’ve found that auras are easiest to see in a dim environment without bright artificial lights. Natural light in the early morning or evening works best for me. While some folks say candlelight works, I find that the flickering distracts me.

Some herbs and incense can help with aura sight. Herbal blends designed for psychic enhancement have worked well for me in the past. 

My favorite herb for inducing aura vision is mugwort. It is good for other magical purposes, as well. Do some research and be careful if you decide to try it, of course. Not everyone reacts well to herbs.

Begin by focusing your vision on the edges of the body. This is regardless of whether you’re working by yourself or with someone else. 

With other people, I like to fix my vision above the top of the head. When looking for my own aura, I extend my hand flat and at an angle. Then, I gaze above my palm.

This is tricky, though. It takes a lot of practice. It works best for me if I look at the space  close to the body, and try to ignore the body itself. It’s difficult, though. We’re used to looking directly at objects, not the area around them.

I would suggest not wearing very bright clothing when attempting this. That can be distracting. It’s also good to do this against a blank, uncolored surface, like a white wall.

The aura will usually appear first as a light shimmering in the air. This may have a wispy mist-like appearance. It usually begins with a grayish color. Once you can see this, focus on it, and not the object.

When you can see the aura very close to the body, begin to glance around that area. After a time, you will be able to see a larger, more diffuse part.

Aura Colors

While many people can see auras, not everyone can see aura colors. This is especially true for beginners. For those that don’t see colors, the aura appears as that shifting, shimmering mist.

If color does appear in the aura, focus on the color. It may seem to grow brighter and brighter. Most seers agree that the colors correspond to the nature of the person at that specific time. 

Some books will list “color meanings” for the aura. My view is a bit different. Aura colors do have meaning, but, to me, a given color’s meaning depends on the seer.

If you associate yellow with happiness, seeing a yellow aura would show that the subject is happy. We don’t all process color the same way! We tend to absorb cultural associations for certain colors. Still, everyone has a different view. Keep this in mind when reading the aura!

Conclusion

I hope this article provides a good beginning for potential aura seers! Developing aura vision is fun and exciting. You can learn about a person (and how to connect with them!) by examining their aura.

It can also be helpful for witches and magicians. It’s a good first step to seeing all kinds of subtle forces. If you can see them, it’s easier to connect with them! Anyways, I hope you’re all having a great day. May your magick be glorious!

blue orchids

hanahaki & soulmate au (reposted)

pairing: jungkook | reader
genre: angst and a sprinkle of fluff
word count: 18.748
warnings: implied smut
disclaimer: I do not own the hanahaki disease concept.

I am immensely thankful for the talented people who have created art / edits for this story: x, x, x, x, x, x ♡ also, make sure to read moonlight (drabble from jimin’s pov) and home after rain (short sequel) after reading this story. enjoy!


You were eighteen years old when Jimin’s name showed up on your hand.

The day is fresh and clear in your memory: early December, the winds stronger than ever as they threatened to pierce through the windows of your room, hints of snowflake dancing in the air as the first snowfall augured an even sharper winter. There was a smile on your face that didn’t match the unrelenting coldness of the month, and even though the night was falling and the air felt icy on the tips of your fingers, there was only warmth in your chest as you went through the pictures of your phone.

Pictures of you and Jimin drinking hot chocolate, of clumsy iceskating, of funny faces that made you laugh out loud in the quietness of your bedroom. The feeling sparking in your chest could be considered somewhat dangerous— after all, you were just a girl that didn’t have any marks on her skin, a girl whose fate was yet to be decided. Something as enigmatic as love could be a treacherous thing, too risky for someone that couldn’t decide their destiny on their own.

Keep reading

Hot Blooded (M)

Originally posted by eatjin

Summary: As the Crown Princess, you are never seen wearing the same dress twice. Many attribute this to your wealth or your status. If only they knew the reason for your constantly changing wardrobe, was the fact that your husband can never keep from literally ripping your clothes off.

Member: Jin

Word Count: 3.4k

Genre: Smut, Fluff

A/N: A continuation of sorts to Blue Blooded, as I was highly amused by Seokjin’s frustration with dresses as well as the revelation that the man has the strength to literally pick up Taehyung and toss him around (courtesy of an ISAC fancam).

Blue Blooded

As the Crown Princess, you are never seen wearing the same dress twice. Many attribute this to your wealth or your status, the styling of your attire always a topic on the lips of the ladies that attend parties at the palace, and sometimes even some men. If only they knew the reason for your constantly changing wardrobe, was the fact that your husband can never keep from literally ripping your clothes off.

“Jin!” You chastise him when you hear the ripping of fabric as a part of your bodice tears, letting your dress loosen enough so that he can slip the garment completely off your body.

“Sorry,” he mutters against the skin of your neck, starting to walk you backwards until the back of your knees hit the bed. You sigh, not really sure how sorry he actually is, considering this is the third time this week this has happened.

Keep reading

Singapore Sling

Pairing: Harry Styles X Reader

Rating: NC-17

Character count: 35,696 / Word Count: 6,521

Your duties as maid of honour were fairly simple: maximise alcohol and minimise stress, keep an eye on the bride-to-be, and above all else, have things under control. You’ve promised yourself to keep this wedding a fuckup-free zone, anticipating smooth sailing from the moment you land in Antigua. When danger emerges on the horizon in the form of a denim-clad devil dressed in Gucci and gold, things take a turn—nothing in the MOH handbook has prepared you for what to do in the event that you unwittingly sleep with the best man.

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I remember a time when you could walk into any card shop inside any mall and the glass cases would be decorated and overflowed with these beauties.  I would stare at them for minutes on end appreciating how each one would shimmer differently in the light.  As a child they captured my imagination as a sort of majestic item, a piece of cardboard that I would never be able to afford.