the siphon


Azriel smiled faintly. “Would you like me to show you the garden?”

She seemed so small before him, so fragile compared to the scales of his fighting leathers, the breadth of his shoulders. The wings peeking over them. 

But Elain did not balk from him, did not shy away as she nodded–just once.

Azriel, graceful as any courtier, offered her an arm. I couldn’t tell if she was looking at his blue Siphon or at his scarred skin beneath as she breathed, “Beautiful.”

Color bloomed high on Azriel’s golden-brown cheeks, but he inclined his head in thanks and led my sister toward the back doors into the garden, sunlight bathing them.

- A Court of Wings and Ruin, Sarah J. Maas

Sweetest ship or BBF’s, these two are special. 

This is for the wonderful @throne-of-ashes-and-beauty ❤. Thank you for this! I LOVED DRAWING AZRIEL! 

And, apparently, I’m obsessed with closeups.

Luster, [Part 18]

[Part 1] [Part 2] [Part 3] [Part 4] [Part 5] [Part 6] [Part 7] [Part 8] [Part 9][Part 10]
[Part 11] [Part 12] [Part 13] [Part 14] [Part 15] [Part 16] [Part 17]

The rain vanishes and Taako, cold on the ground, looks at the cloudy morning sky. He feels the air in the demiplane shift again, then pull around him like wind from somewhere else. There’s a neverwhere static building between his ears, and through the clouds there’s a sudden dawn of crimson. It arcs, and laces, and like lightning it fans over the sky briefly. It’s silent, no thunder, just a jolt of power that starts to build again as soon as it’s spent.

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“The secret of blue is well kept. Blue comes from far away. On its way, it hardens and changes into a mountain. The cicada works at it. The birds assist. In reality, one doesn’t know….The mystery of sapphire, mystery of Sainte Vierge, mystery of the siphon, mystery of the sailor’s collar, mystery of the blue rays that blind and your blue eye which goes through my heart.”

— Jean Cocteau, from “The Secret of Blue”

“Blue makes no noise. It is a shy colour, without ulterior motives, forewarning or plan; it does not leap out abruptly at the eye like yellow or red, but draws it in, tames it little by little, lets it come unhurriedly, so that it sinks in and drowns, unaware.” 

— Jean-Michel Maulpoix, A Matter of Blue: Poems

“Blue still brings a principle of darkness with it. This colour has a peculiar and almost indescribable effect on the eye. As a hue it is powerful but it is on the negative side, and in its highest purity is, as it were, a stimulating negation.”

— Goethe, Theory of Colours

“Blue has no dimensions, it is beyond dimensions, whereas the other colours are not. They are pre-psychological expanses, red, for example, presupposing a site radiating heat…All colours arouse specific associative ideas, psychologically material or tangible, while blue suggests at most the sea and sky, and they, after all, are in actual, visible nature what is most abstract.”

— Yves Klein, Selected Writings

“For many years, I have been moved by the blue at the far edge of what can be seen, that color of horizons, of remote mountain ranges, of anything far away. The color of that distance is the color of an emotion, the color of solitude and of desire, the color of there seen from here, the color of where you are not. And the color of where you can never go.”

— Rebecca Solnit, A Field Guide to Getting Lost


montereybayaquarium The nifty nautilus gets around using jet propulsion! By expelling water from its mantle cavity through a siphon, it propels through the ocean, changing the direction of its siphon to “steer.” 

Dear Activists

My whole household is activists, including my 65 year old parents. Here are some things I’ve picked up from listening to and observing them all:

-Social change is like those Japanese bamboo fountain things, the ones that make the donk noise. It builds up over time, drip by drip, with no recognizable effect, and then it hits a tipping point and a lot happens all at once. Where you are in that process is influenced by a chaos theory level of factors beyond your or anyone else’s control. 

-Workaholism is the drug of choice for most activists, and it is counter productive as hell. It’s hard to resist, because what you are doing is important, time sensitive, and urgent. And the culture of activism is infected with this macho bullshit about pushing non stop. Well news flash m’dears, there will never come a time when there are not more important, urgent, time sensitive battles than any one person can address. Strategically, an activist can accomplish much more by insisting on a sustainable work-life balance and fighting on for decades than by burning themself out all at once. Rest. Play. Relax. Self-care, y’all. *Do it.*

-Trying to make your organization or movement completely ideologically pure makes you smaller, more isolated, and less effective.

-When you start organizing a group of people, the first ones to jump at the chance for leadership are not usually good leaders. What you want are the people who wait a little, think it through, see where it’s going. Also the people who already have the respect of their peers on account of being solid folks.

-Maintaining ethics and integrity can be a pain in the ass, especially when struggling against those who have neither, but it is *vital*. Any short term advantage you can gain through skeezy tactics is overshadowed by the trust and respect you lose, among your allies as well as your opponents.

-People’s politics and their personal decency don’t always match up in a logical way. You will meet people whose politics are straight fucked up, but who somehow still treat everyone they interact with directly well. You will also meet people who say and seem to believe all the right things, and are *assholes*. Handled right, the former can be hugely tactically useful as points of contact, and potentially teachable. The latter will join your organizations and proceed to shit right in the bed.

-The best way to support intense struggles against oppression far away in from a position of solidarity, with your feet firmly planted in struggles close to home. Ignoring local oppression because other people have it worse doesn’t help anybody. It’s a win for Team Oppression.

-Guilt, fear, and worry are not useful. Don’t beat yourself up for having these feelings, but know you are not in any way *obliged* to feel them. Acknowledge them, then let them go. Calm thinking and reasonable self confidence make you more effective.

-Don’t cut out people who are only capable of making smaller efforts and commitments in the struggle. That’s just throwing away resource. The idea that low effort contributions siphon away energy and make people less likely to be active is a myth. Low effort contributions make people feel involved, and more, not less, likely to participate in other ways.

-Running organizations in a democratic way is a giant pain in the ass. There will be drama and delays. There will be dumb decisions. Still 100% worth it.

-Organizing and activism are learned skills. There is a lot of history and a lot to be learned from it, there are people who have been doing this shit for ages and know how to make it work. Seek out good information. There’s no need to slow yourself down by reinventing the wheel.

-The impulse to give up on a flawed organization or movement, tear it down and start over is counterproductive 9 times out of 10. If you wait to get it perfect, you’ll never get anything done.

Taako: You have done an amazing job. You know, if you keep it up, then someday you might be a better wizard than I am.

Angus: That’s very kind of you to say, I hope-

Taako: [grabs Angus by his lapels, in a low voice] And when that day comes, little man, oh when that day comes. I will summon whatever powers I still have at my disposal, that you have not siphoned away from me, and I will take all of my cunning and all arcana still within my reach, and I will use it to strike you down. Little man, don’t ever, EVER, again challenge my power. [pause, in normal voice] It’s a monologue I’m working on, Agnes, sorry, that wasn’t actually directed at you. 

One time I listened to this podcast that talked a little bit about the relationship between Chinese and Jewish food in New York (which goes deeer than old quips about “they’re the only restraints open on Christmas and Easter”) and how the first “Chinese fusion” restraint in the US was an Jewish-Chinese resturaunt that mixed recipes from both cultures and I thought that made a good counterpoint to people peddling the myth that fusion food is something created by sinister privileged white people who wish to siphon the authenticity of other cultures like vampires or that immigrants changed recipes only to accommodate the “privileged” (as opposed to other immigrants)

Keep Yeh Warm

Alex X Reader

In which Alex becomes attached to the first beautiful thing he’s seen in weeks.

(I’m putting everything else under a cut in case anyone still hasn’t seen Dunkirk!! It may contain some spoilers.)

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Nessian Lingerie Shop Headcanons

just a little something @nessiansmut and I came up with (is anyone surprised by this point?)

  • So this happens sometime after ACOWAR when Nessian still aren’t together/they haven’t accepted the mating bond but Cass is aware of it
  • Nesta is out shopping with Elain and they go in the lingerie shop in Velaris that Feyre suggested
  • Nesta would just pick out some boring plain things because she’s a practical girl
  • So she goes to try it on and the stuff doesn’t really fit right so the clerk goes to bring her the right size but instead comes back with something super hot that Elain sneakily gave to her and told her to bring it to her sister
  • And Nesta would just be like ‘no way, that’s not what I asked for. That’s a lacy see-through handkerchief you want me to try on’
  • But the shop clerk and Elain would try and convince her to try it on 
    ‘Trust me, it might not be what you asked for but it’s what you need.’ 
    ‘But there’s no point in buying this. This is lingerie for someone who’s in a relationship.’
    ‘Sometimes you can just buy nice things for yourself, Nes. Who knows, one day you might want it and not have it.’
    ‘Just buy it to wear on a rainy day and it’ll make you feel better, trust me. At least try it on and then decide.’
  • And Nesta would finally give in ‘Okay, I’ll try it on and if I get it I’ll get it for myself and no one else.’
  • She finally gets it on after struggling for a few minutes because it’s a lacy, strappy contraption and all nice lingerie is a pain to put on. And she realises it’s not the right size so she tries 5 more sets and 3 different sizes because we know Cass said she has big boobs and let’s be honest, shopping for lingerie when you have bigger boobs is the biggest pain in the ass
  • So she’s about to give up muttering to herself ‘I don’t know what Elain’s talking about with this whole lingerie thing this is so stupid’ and ‘normal people can’t possibly wear this. Why does it need so many straps this is crazy’ and she finally looks in the mirror thinking she must look ridiculous in that set too
  • But she loves it. It’s very scandalous, it’s nothing like what she’s used to from the human realm. Her body is covered in fine lace and a criss cross of red straps and it’s hugging her body perfectly
  • And without even realising she thinks about how Cass would react if he saw her in that and she lets out a bark of laughter at the mental image but then she imagines how his expression would change and his eyes would darken and slowly drag over her body and linger for just a second longer in some places
  • She flushes and realises she’s thinking of Cassian which she definitely shouldn’t be so she just gets back to trying on the lingerie and seeing if she likes it
  • Meanwhile, Cassian is training with Azriel and has no idea this is happening. Until, that is, he suddenly gets a mental image of a bit of skin, a flash of a bare calf or something and he just brushes it off and thinks he must be imagining things and continues sparring with Az
  • But when she starts thinking about him, Nesta unconsciously opens up her mental shield and starts sending stuff down the mating bond to Cass without realising it
  • So suddenly, Cass stops seeing Az and the training room around him and what he sees instead is Nesta. Nesta in a pair of deep red - as red as his siphons - lacy lingerie, hair tousled and face slightly flushed from all the dressing and undressing she’s been doing. And she’s pushing her boobs up checking to make sure nothing falls out, and adjusting the straps, completely unaware that Cass is seeing everything
  • AND THE BAT. JUST. DIES. He’s just completely frozen in shock.
  • And Nesta’s hands trail down her body to her waist, and she’s adjusting the sides of the knickers before turning around to check out the back (which is the moment when cass truly thinks he’s died and gone to heaven)
  • And Elain asks how she’s doing and Cassian would realise she’s in a shop trying stuff on and he realises that what he’s seeing is 100% real and 100% Nesta and that’s 100% what’s she’s wearing or isn’t wearing at that moment
  • Nesta just sighs and tells Elain she’s okay and she just hooks her fingers in the waistband of the underwear and starts to slowly roll it down her hips and Cassian is about to E X P L O D E
  • And that’s when Az punches him in the face and he gets pulled back to reality
  • Cassian is so angry. Because Azriel punched him. Because he was to distracted and didn’t defend himself. Because he didn’t see what Nesta was going to do next. And because his face hurts Cauldron damn him!
  • So Az asks him what’s wrong and why Cassian froze and had his guard down for so long and Cass tells him and Azriel just laughs himself hoarse. ‘I knew Elain was going shopping but I had no idea she was bringing Nesta’ and ‘If what you saw is anything like the stuff Elain was trying on, I get why you’re in deep shit brother but get it together, i was still able to fight!’
  • Cass would be running his hands across his face and through his hair and pacing trying to calm himself down “Cauldron! And I thought the night court dresses with lower necklines and no corsets were bad but this is pure torture!” 
    “Well if you’re lucky, brother, she’ll actually let you see what she got in person.”
  • Fast forward to the next day when Nesta notices the purple bruise on Cassian’s cheek and she’s like ”Did someone finally get fed up with you and your smart mouth?” and Cassian just thinks “Oh, sweetheart if you knew this was all your fault.” But he doesn’t say that. And he desperately wants to ask if she got that red lacy lingerie set but he doesn’t do that either.
  • But just a bit later Nesta does something and the neckline of her dress moves and Cass sees just the tiniest bit of red lace and and the image of Nesta in the changing room is suddenly fresh in his mind again and he has to leave and cool down before he’s decent again
Ideas for Witchcraft Using Art


A compilation of ideas I have read or thought up! I do not claim originality for this post. Some ideas crossover between fields and are not repeated.


  • Program your drawing tools with intent - for lighter/darker lines, for clarity of the stroke, for following through with the motion, for consistency.
  • Draw sigils on your drawing board or easel or table for inspiration.
  • (And if you’re using a flat table to draw, consider getting a drawing board. Drawing large on a flat surface distorts your POV.)
  • Energize your brush water for better removal of paint.
  • Draw a sigil on your palette or mirror/glass for paint to keep your paints moist for longer.
  • Use a clothes pin (for pink rubber erasers) or a 2B/light graphite pencil (for the kneadable erasers) to draw sigils for better removal of lines.
  • Enchant all your tools - brushes, paper pads, canvases, pencil cases, anything - for durability.
  • Program a stone (of your choice) to prevent loss of your tools and keep it in your backpack, pencil pouch, or portfolio bag.
  • Draw sigils on the back of your finished works for extra attention.
  • Sacrifice the first tip of your pencils and charcoal (both light and dark and especially anything past 6B) to a jar, and put a spell on the jar to keep your light lines light and your dark lines dark.
  • If you use a ruler or a stick to check proportions, dip it in enchanted water the night before - enchant the water to give you clarity of vision.
  • Optional: Enchant your clothes to repel paint stains, charcoal dust, pastel sticks, etc. (Optional because unless you’re Yves Klein, most artists I am familiar with are careful not to get excessively dirty because of wasted materials.)
  • Keep your paints/color-tools in a container enchanted to maintain their vibrancy.
  • Draw a sigil on any face-mask you have so that it filters all hazardous fumes out, especially if you are using spray paint.
  • Enchant spray paint cans for less dripping, as well as fixative cans.


  • Enchant any and all materials and projects for durability, especially after welding, gluing, slipping, or firing a project.
  • Use chalk to draw a sigil on welding or plasma cutter surfaces for clean lines and careful motions.
  • Enchant any material used to bind objects together or secure objects with power and specific purpose (ex. glue to bind these two pieces of wood together, straps to bind these several pieces of plaster mold together).
  • Use magic to make a specific place where you rest your work (a table, a board, a section of floor) so that while you are away it is protected and safe.
  • Enchant all your small tools so that they are returned to you if lost. (Also sharpie your name all over those things. Do it.)
  • If you have access to YOUR OWN power tools, put a sigil for sharpness and durability on any saw blades. Do not do this if you are at a school using public equipment - you may not be allowed to draw on blades or remove them from the machines to draw on.
  • Siphon any frustration or anger as energy into hammers for extra force.
  • Invent a small chant to increase precision and say it before drilling, cutting, or altering anything.
  • Write sigils for protection, durability, and good color on paper and leave them in the kilns with your art work during firing. (For ceramics and hardening metal casting sand-resin molds. Wouldn’t advise it for glass kilns due to potential contamination by ash in small glass kilns.)
  • Enchant the hell out of your workspace for cleanliness, organization, and loss-prevention. Do this like everyday, I swear. I know sculptors. DO IT NOW.


  • Sharpness enchantments on every single blade in your work area.
  • Draw durability and precision sigils on any sewing equipment used.
  • Enchant water for color-vibrancy and attention and use it to anoint all fabric lengths (usually best while they are still rolled up or immediately after purchasing them).
  • Energize paper reams with color-vibrancy and attention rather than using water.
  • Cast spells on all inks for good consistency and ease of use.
  • Enchant ink-mixing area for cleanliness and lack of contamination.
  • Likewise, enchant cleaning supplies (mineral oils, etc) for extra power while cleaning.
  • Say a protective chant over your pieces while they are drying to prevent damage.
  • Sigil the back of your stamps (and the printmaking word for the ‘stamps’ you use, I forgot) for durability.
  • Visualize your paper/fabric as imbibed with energy of fire for faster drying times.
  • Enchant thread for strength, enchant needle for sharpness, enchant any backing for protection.  


  • Cast spells all over your electronics for protection, battery life, memory space, anything you can think of.
  • If you use a tablet, clean it (carefully) and while doing that visualize your intent for the tablet to provide you with clean lines while drawing.
  • Draw a sigil on your workspace to remind you to save, frequently, often, and with more than one file name during a big project.
  • Enchant your external hard drives and USB sticks with loss prevention spells.
  • Draw a sigil for attention on the background of your digital file before starting a project, erase it for the sigil to activate or leave it hidden in the background for permanence.
  • Turn your digital signature into an enchantment for protection, attention, or theft-prevention.
  • Draw a sigil lightly on the reverse of any photographs printed for protection, attention, or theft prevention.
  • Hold camera lenses up to the sun for good lighting and angles and to the moon for clarity and cleanliness of your lens.
  • Ritualize cleaning of equipment to imbibe materials with specific attributes.


  • Enchant water pre-performance for strength, focus, and energy.
  • Draw sigils for attention on your body underneath your clothes (if you are the performer) or on the focus of your art.
  • Enchant digital or recorded files of your performance for protection (from loss due to accidental trashing) and for locating it later.
  • Sorry I don’t know much about performance, but call upon the spirits of Carol Schneeman and Joseph Beuys and I bet they’d help. (Schneeman’s still living but summon her anyways.)


  • Enchant your coffee, tea, or drink of choice for clarity during critiques and focus during those same critiques.
  • Put sigils on your clothes to decrease anxiety and stress, put sigils on your clothes to prevent damage to yourself or to your clothes.
  • Invent a chant to increase retention while studying for Art History.

Headcannons I have on the Archeron’s Sisters about their appearance. 

  • Feyre is taller them her sisters, though all of them are tall;
  • If they had childhood pictures, until age of 5 or 6, would be impossible to tell if it was Nesta or Feyre in the pictures, they had the same feaures, eyes and hair tone;
  • Between the three of them, Elain has the most golden hair due the time she spent outside, gardening;
  • Feyre’s eyes are more blue than Nesta’s, but both resemble their mother; 
  • Elain is skinnier than both her sisters, her body structure slim, while Feyre has more curves and Nesta has the biggest breasts (that she properly hides with modest cleavages);
  • Nesta’s hair falls past her shoulders, but doesn’t reach the middle of her waist as Feyre’s or Elain’s, because her strands are too thin and straight and the softer wind can make her look like a disheveled lion;
  • Feyre had the darker hair of them, maybe one tone or two, but after living in Velaris, walking and training in the sun, Nesta earned the darker hair title;
  • They always had different clothing preferences, but, when they were small, both Elain and Feyre used to try Nesta’s dresses when she wasn’t in home, just because they liked their bigger sister’s clothes more;
  • Nesta doesn’t enjoy accessories and doesn’t keep personal jewelry of any kind;
  • Elain prefer light tones in her dresses, shades of pink or green are her favorites and she never wore pants in her life (while Feyre love pants!);
  • Nesta could live only using blue tones for her whole life and maybe some red, just a touch of red, in special occasions, powerful, vibrant red (Cassian’s siphons red);
  • Feyre is physically stronger than her sisters, since she is the only one with training, looking more athletic;
  • The three of them have high cheekbones and well-aligned teeth, with full lips. When one of them smile intensely, their eyes close a little in the edges, though it hasn’t been seen happening with Nesta since childhood.

acotar instagram series: azriel + elain + lucien

I couldn’t tell if she was looking at his blue Siphon or at his scarred skin beneath as she breathed, “Beautiful.”

Color bloomed high on Azriel’s golden-brown cheeks, but he inclined his head in thanks and led my sister toward the back doors into the garden, sunlight bathing them.

But Elain said nothing. Did not so much as take one step downward.

Lucien inclined his head in a bow, the movement hiding the gleam in his eye—the longing and sadness.

And when Lucien turned to signal to Rhys to go…He did not glance back at Elain.

Did not see the half step she took towrd the stairs—as if she’d speak to him. Stop him.