She was beautiful, but she was beautiful in the way a forest fire was beautiful: something to be admired from a distance, not up close.
from Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
This is one of the funniest, constantly-misused quotes I see around on the internet, as most people I see sharing it seem to think it’s either from a romance or about, at the closest to the truth, a femme fatale, while actually it’s something the men in the room think about War herself, who’s traveling around the world creating wars until the Apocalypse shows up, and they all realize at once that while they’re attracted to her, they’re mostly terrified by her, and it’s both hilarious because she’s a Horseman of the Apocalypse and this great metaphor for war and how men and war correspondents are thrilled by war when it’s at a distance but never up close, and I’m so into it.
Thank you Faust for making such great female characters :DD Here’s her Thrilling Intent universe trio Aesling the Neckstabber, Vachon the SPELL-er of SWEET AIR, and Koh Kura the totally legit magician.
Louis is a riding instructor at a summer camp, and Harry is a fellow counselor who he’s been successfully managing his crush on for the last two summers. That is, until Harry shows up this year leveled up and lethal, and all Louis’s formerly perfected veneer of nonchalance melts like a Popsicle in the sun.
After completing his prestigious dance training overseas, Harry returns to England to begin teaching in one of London’s elite ballet schools. Only, certain dancers aren’t too happy to have him suddenly on board. Or his well-fitted lycra uniform. Throw in some unusual dynamics, tense elevation demonstrations and an unlikely dance partnership, and you’ve got yourself a pretty interesting edition of Matthew Bourne’s ‘Swan Lake’.
Or the one where Harry is the new ballet teacher, despite him being younger than everyone in his class, and Louis is less than impressed by his inescapable talent. They sort themselves out eventually.
**I am in love with this fic. Listen, even if you don’t love ballet, you will love this.
“Of course, the ONE time a ridiculously attractive man shows up at Louis’ home, butt naked, he turns out to be an arrogant love god. Not only that, but he’s an arrogant love god facing a multi-million pound lawsuit, possible banishment from Mount Olympus, and a shit ton of adjustment issues.”
Alternatively: Harry is Cupid, Louis and Liam own a law firm, and they’re all getting sued.
**HARRY CRIES GLITTER!! NEED I SAY MORE?!?! But in all seriousness, this fic is gold. Go read it!!
Harry knows, objectively, that he shouldn’t try to get his ghostwriter into bed. He knows. But…he finds it hard to resist temptation when Louis waltzes into his home and his life and turns everything upside down. And, as it turns out, Louis might just need a little turning upside down too.
**This fic was a treat to read. Harry is a troubled soul and Louis helps him figure himself out.
You Won’t Believe Who Was Spotted Leaving Harry Styles’ Primrose Hill Pad!
If Harry was being completely honest, it probably wasn’t the best idea to be a world-renowned popstar and an infamous vigilante.
(Especially when all the comic books said never reveal your secret identity to keep your loved ones safe – which was all well and good, until Louis.)
Or: Harry wants a lot of things – fame, glory, Louis – but that last one is particularly hard to get when everyone thinks you’re dating your secret superhero alter-ego and suddenly you’ve become your own worst cockblock.
**This is fucking hilarious!! A very funny twist to your vigilante fics!!
Louis is the father to the most brilliant little boy in the world who is all Louis really needs, or at least that’s what he tells himself. Harry is a gorgeous boybander fresh off a two year break and a massive scandal that’s left him a little broken and more than ready to move on.
They fall in love.
**I have been following this one since it had been a WIP. It is a good read.
For as long as anyone can remember, Old Hillsbridge Manor has always been believed to be haunted. Everyone in the village agrees and keeps a respectful, fearful, distance. New in town after a bad breakup and an internship that led to disappointment rather than a permanent job, Harry Styles figures taking pictures of the decrepit building could be a great new creative project. Or at least a much-needed distraction while he searches for a job and crashes at his parents’ new house. No one warned him about the apparitions though; about the music, the laughter, the people who flicker and vanish when you call after them, the echoes of a past that should be long gone… Harry has never believed in spirits but even he can admit that there’s something weird going on. What starts as mere curiosity evolves into a full-blown investigation and soon enough, Harry finds himself making friends with an aristocrat from the 1920s and struggling with finding the best way to tell him that he’s dead.
The Ghost Hunter AU where Niall lives to prove ghosts are real, Zayn is a skeptical librarian and Harry gets caught up in a century-old mystery and catches feeling in the process.
**This fic has probably been recced everywhere in every list as it should be. It is one of the most unique fics I have read. Also, the feels are real. Get ready to cry.
The Nanny AU in which Louis is the sassy gay Nanny-by-accident taking care of the kids of movie director Harry Styles. Also there’s Liam as the butler, Niall as Louis’ best friend, Zayn as the model/actor and Nick as Harry’s partner from work that maybe wants a bit more from Harry than cooperation.
**This is hilarious, Also, Nick is a dick. So, you know, a warning…
Louis Tomlinson has just landed his dream job, coaching soccer at Augustus University. When he moves into a new house near campus, he meets his very fit new neighbor, English professor Harry Styles. Although their first meeting leads to an instant mutual dislike, the more Harry gets to know Louis, the more he likes what he sees.
Or the one where Harry’s African grey parrot spills his dirty secrets to his very hot neighbor.
**This one was so good, guys. You will fall in love with Darcy, the parrot. And it got me looking into parrots and stuff. They are awesome!! But read this fic first!!! I am also quite curious about the writer. I really liked their writing style and would love to read more of their works!!
Harry has dreamed of a world outside the tiny village of Holmes Chapel for as long as he can remember… a world full of magic and adventure and true love. It was nothing but a childhood dream, however, until an old family friend comes bearing word of a plot against Harry’s life and a very dangerous truth: Harry is the rightful heir to the crown and must embark on a perilous quest to reclaim his throne from the ruthless would-be King Simon. But in the end Harry will find himself fighting for more than a crown, and on the verge of losing something much more precious than his sovereign power. Because magic might be real, but life is not a fairy tale, and Harry is a prince up against a very big dragon.
Or: a medieval fantasy AU in which Harry is a prince in disguise and Louis is the king of the faeries.
Harry has been alive for decades, and yet he’s never been as confused and dumbfounded. He’s a witch, for God’s sake. Can’t get much weirder than all the magical things he’s experienced throughout his lifetime. Never in a million years, however, would he have expected to be mere inches away from a hybrid.
Or: Harry is a witch who’s still working on developing his powers and Louis is a werecat who falls into his life and turns it upside down.
**I LOVED THIS FIC!!! I LOVED EVERYTHING ABOUT THIS FIC!! i WOULD GIVE MY LIFE FOR THIS FIC!! I mean, KittenHybrid!Louis, Witch!Harry, Matchmaker!Steve!!! What else do you need?!?! Go read this, right now!!
“Revan was power. Staring into her eyes was like staring into the heart of the Force. Even then, you could see the Jedi she would slay etched on her soul.” – Kreia [Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords]
Ok but like since Lance said that he would want to stay on Earth because there’s Italian food……….. and Pidge is confirmed as Italian….. can you imagine him flying over to her in Blue once they are back home just to have some Certified Italian Pizza With Extra Cheese??
The sound of rain assaulting the windows and hammering the wet earth beyond them was loud in the otherwise silent room, a raging tempest that echoed the tumultuous storm in her head as they hobbled together through the door.
“Careful,” Han grunted.
His grip was sharp around her rib cage, his fingers biting into her side where he held her, arm tightening as he attempted to carry more of her weight. Disjointed, frantic images flashed across her thoughts: the frantic look on his face as he’d skidded on the slick duracrete, falling to his knees in front of her–how’d he’d lifted her in his arms–run with her down the alley, his flashing eyes and razor-sharp voice when she’d told him to put her down–beseeching, as they’d reached the main road, to let her walk… If they caused a scene, if they blew their cover…. his sturdy strength all but holding her on her feet as she’d staggered back to the dilapidated hotel…
Leia blinked dizzily as Han bodily guided her into the ‘fresher. At any other moment, she knew, she’d have hissed her indignation when he hoisted her up onto the counter, but all she could do just then was grit her teeth and steady herself with her hand on his shoulder.
Wordlessly Han darted back into the bedroom, leaving her soaked and shivering, perched on the edge of the sink. The cacophony of pouring rain was muted in the ‘fresher–enough so that she could hear the soft sounds of the water dripping from her drenched clothes onto the tile floor. In a kind of hazy fascination she leaned forward to see that the puddle gathering beneath her was tinted pink. Weakly she fell back against the cracked, spotted mirror behind her, lest she lose her balance and topple off the counter.
Han’s voice was still ringing in her ears.
What’re you doing? You trying to get yourself killed?
She closed her eyes. No, she hadn’t been, but…
The flurry of movement around her signaled his reappearance, and though she kept her eyes closed against dizziness and something alarmingly like shame, she could discern clearly the sounds of the medkit being tossed on the counter beside her, towels being pulled from the shelf, and the faucet running as he hastily scrubbed the grime and blood from his hands.
Not until she felt his fingers close around her wrist did she realize that she was still clutching her jacket closed over the scarlet stain blossoming through the white fabric of her waterlogged shirt. Her knuckles appeared as white as the material, and she rushed to assure herself it was from the vice-like grip she’d taken on the jacket, the exertion of keeping her fist pressed against the gushing wound in her side, and the cold, frigid rain–though her gaze flickered back to the bloody-water puddle on the floor.
Without speaking, Han was shoving her jacket down off her shoulders. She must have really been suffering from blood loss, she realized, if she was letting him strip her clothes off without a single word. Leia tried to peel her shirt off on her own, but lifting her arms sent an awful pain searing through her side, and so Han tugged the garment over her head and tossed it in a soggy heap with her jacket. The delirious observation that his actions held none of the gentleness or desire she would have imagined he’d display the first time he undressed her flickered absurdly across her thoughts, interrupted when he grabbed up one of the hotel’s dingy towels and barked at her to keep it held tight against her side.
Goosebumps breaking out all over her cold, clammy skin in the ‘fresher’s chill air, stripped down to her bra and clutching a bath towel to a wound that they both knew was the result of her own reckless stupidity, Leia weakly acknowledged that the only reasons her face wasn’t burning from humiliation were because she’d bled out all over the city, and because she was too dizzy as a result to feel embarrassment.
Han rummaged with sharp efficiency through the medpack, tossing things carelessly to the cluttered counter in his haste. He didn’t warn her or apologize when he shoved her hand aside to spray her wound with an antiseptic, or look up at her face when she hissed and flinched from the sting. Next came the sealant, which stung even worse, and for the first time Leia chanced a glance down at the angry red slash that cut from her right side down towards her navel. Not as deep as they’d initially feared, but bleeding heavily enough to be a cause of serious concern. She needed a medcenter, and they both knew she wouldn’t get one.
Han’s hands must have been shaking as he’d tried to tear open the first bacta patch, because suddenly he swore and she looked up to watch him rip it open with his teeth–an unprecedented lack of composure and control on his part that seemed incredibly profound, somehow, as she sat there half-undressed before him. Was it adrenaline that turned his hazel eyes to steely gray as he pressed the bacta patch against her ribcage? Fear that had caused that tremor in his otherwise steady hands? She was sure it was anger that resulted in the clench of his jaw, the awful, resounding silence between them as he tended her wound. She could feel the anger coming off of him in waves.
“Sit up,” he whispered shortly once he had five bacta patches adhered tightly down the length of the wound. Leia’s head spun a bit as she pushed away from the cold mirror, and she clutched his shoulders so that he could wind gauze around her.
“This’ll have to hold ‘til morning,” he said bitterly.
Shaking, Leia looked up into his face. He’d leaned closer to see over her shoulder to secure the end of the bandage, and when he drew back their faces were terribly close, her hands still on his shoulders and his arms still around her. Cold water ran in tiny rivulets down her neck and back from her bedraggled, wet braids, and though he’d flung off his own jacket, he still wore his dripping shirt, icy where it brushed against her bare torso, and yet she could also feel the heat of his body through the fabric, warming the air between them. The occasional brush of his knuckles on her flesh as he’d bandaged her had been such fierce heat that she’d trembled. He was gazing directly into her eyes, and Leia looked back in silence, wondering when the moment would come, now that it was clear she wouldn’t die, for him to scream at her.
The silence stretched, suspended and tense and wary. Leia’s side was throbbing–she couldn’t bear to take the hypo that would dull her pain, and Han knew it–and she wanted badly to lie down, but she was frozen as he looked at her. The silence was worse than his judgement, she decided.
“Let me down.”
Han didn’t even blink, much less move away from her.
“Do you have any fucking clue how damn stupid that was?” he demanded. His voice was as harsh as she’d anticipated, and yet lower, too, than she’d thought–a deadly, commanding tone that alarmed her. She was reminded abruptly of his time in the Imperial Navy, and also, incongruously, too, of the night those weeks ago when she’d gone to the Falcon for flatcakes and whiskey…
Leia looked away from him.
“I’m sorry,” she acknowledged tensely.
Han cut across her before she’d gotten halfway through the words.
“You’re not,” he spat. “Sorry that you didn’t catch him, maybe, but that’s about all you’re sorry for, isn’t it, Princess?”
Leia felt her hackles rise.
“And what exactly, captain, do you propose I should feel sorry for?”
Han shrugged away from her, a gesture so callous and dismissive that it stung her far more than she would have thought, and he knelt to gather up the blood soaked towels and her wet, ruined clothes. Then he stood, and turned to her with such an expression of disappointed pity that her throat closed up.
“I’m not gonna watch you get yourself killed,” he said flatly. “I cut you a break the last couple times you darted off on one of your suicide runs, Your Worship, but this is it. If you don’t care enough about yourself to keep yourself alive, then fine, but don’t drag me into it next time. I’m done.”
“Suicide run?” she repeated incredulously. “That man had information about the imperial construction on–”
“You couldn’t’ve caught him, Leia, and you knew it, but you decided to die trying anyway, didn’t you?” he snarled. “Leave me out of it if you’re gonna sacrifice yourself for nothing. That’s not what I signed up for.”
Leia’s mouth opened soundlessly, her eyes prickling and her chest aching more fiercely than her injured side.
“You don’t know what you’re talking about,” she seethed, her weak hands gripping the edge of the counter. She felt bare, and not just because Han held her shirt balled up in his hand.
The look Han gave her was so cutting, so horribly knowing, that her defensive temper–already feeble in light of her wounded, weakened state–crumbled to ruin.
“We still playing this game?” he asked gruffly. His eyes, cold grey moments before, had grown hot–fierce, deep golden green, sharper and more compassionate than anyone, including herself, would have given him credit for.
He stepped close, his hips touching her knees, his hands coming up on the counter to either side of her to brace his tall frame as he leaned over her, wet clothes clinging to him, scarlet traces of her blood streaked over his torso and pants, and in his damp, mussed hair. Her heart suddenly beat double time, and she felt the heavy weight of guilt and dread settle in her stomach as she realized just what exactly had been the implications of her recklessness that night…
His face, closer to hers than it had been since that night she’d sat perched in his lap at the holochess table, loomed inches from her own.
“I know exactly what I’m talking about, Princess,” he whispered.
With that he turned and strode back into the bedroom, leaving her where she sat, half naked and freezing on the sink, lightheaded and grieving and culpable.
Unable to move for several long moments, Leia stared straight ahead. He was wrong. He might have known that she was hurting, or that she felt responsible, but he didn’t know–couldn’t have known the gaping hole that she felt inside herself. He couldn’t fathom the despair, or the incomprehensible loss, no matter what she might have said to him that night. He had no inkling of the guilt that turned her stomach when she relived the moments before Alderaan’s destruction–the anguish of knowing that if it hadn’t been for her, if she hadn’t involved herself, and stolen off with the plans… Han couldn’t have conceived of the loneliness, or the pain, or the torture of dreaming every night that she was on her planet, with her parents, only to wake and remember it was all gone, all of it, and that she’d never again hug her mother, or see her father, or anyone or anyplace that she’d ever known and lived and loved. Some nights she knew it wasn’t real even as she dreamed it, and in those dreams she clutched at her parents and wept, begging them not to go–don’t leave, don’t leave, please don’t leave me–and she would feel wakefulness stealing over her, tearing her from them until she woke to the awful truth. It was a devastation that she’d never have been able to imagine, and so surely Han had no idea.
He didn’t know that she was lost, unfeeling and cold and apathetic, and he surely didn’t know that the adrenaline was all she could feel–all she could feel that wasn’t guilt or grief or anger–and he didn’t know that she had to let the rebellion fuel her–consume her–because if she didn’t she’d go mad in the abyss of her world’s destruction.
Leia pressed her trembling palm against her eyes.
He was right, at least, she admitted raggedly to herself, right in the assertion that she didn’t care if she lived or died. Sometimes, the hollowness didn’t allow for caring.
But it wasn’t suicide that she craved. She didn’t want to die. She wanted–it was–what was it?
Leia wasn’t sure how she’d ended up crumpled on the wet floor with hot tears trailing down her cheeks. All she knew was that she hurt. Oh, she was hurting. And her reckless, obsessive pursuits against the Empire only distracted without alleviating any of the pain.
Maybe that’s what Han knew.
Furious with herself, she scrubbed the tears from her face. She had neither the privacy nor the energy for the emotional breakdown that had been threatening her for the last three months. In fact, she wasn’t even sure she had the energy to get off the floor, and her wound felt like it was on fire.
But she had to stand. She had to pick herself back up.
In this dark sequel to the acclaimed 2016 psychological horror, we return to the city of Rapture and its stylized retro-futuristic setting. Deep underwater, the unforgivably elitist city is beginning to collapse, and the inhabitants are slowly losing themselves to a cocktail of isolation, war and drugs. Masterfully depicted with twists and thrills, Rapture 2: The Fall depicts the struggles of people trying to survive the fall of a society hellbent on devouring itself.