time shifted

For the Birds

She would never tell, but she hated being stuck in the infirmary as much as anyone. Being a mender made it worse, she knew all the routines, all the shifts, what time dinner was, and exactly who it would be who came in with a tray full of food. It was completely predictable, and so utterly boring. Her friends alleviated that, temporarily at least, bringing books to read and mender-sanctioned snacks since she wasn’t on any dietary restrictions save for ‘eat more’.

At least tonight she had Grace with her, the round little bird had been dropped off by Caeliri earlier that evening to keep her company and was currently perched on the end of her bed, studiously preening herself. The latent heat from the phoenix was enough to keep her feet warm, and she shifted under the blanket to better absorb it. It had been centuries since she had taken care of her mother’s pet birds in their aviary at home, but she still enjoyed the simple pleasures of running her fingers through soft feathers, even if Grace’s were made of warmth and flames. She watched as Grace ran her beak along the vanes of her feathers, smoothing everything back into place, small embers falling off of her in place of the usual dander. Lifting a hand, she clicked her tongue, wiggling her fingers to try and beckon her over. The phoenix regarded her for a moment, weighing her options before fluffing up and shaking, half-hopping and half-waddling across the bed to bump her head against those fingers.

“Maybe Caeliri is right and you really are a spoilt little thing,”

She laughed at Grace’s indignant chirp, fingertips scratching and massaging the spots on the little bird’s head she knew were favoured. Gradually Grace relaxed, her head sinking down until it seemed as if it merged directly with her body, a warm little lump tucked into the crook of Lirelle’s elbow.

“Hmm, while we’re both here maybe I should try to teach you something, like, I don’t know, fetch?” Pausing her petting for a moment, she looked down, eyebrow raised in askance. Slowly, deliberately, Grace opened one eye, giving her the dirtiest look that a bird could muster before closing it again, head cocked to demand the scratches continue.

Instead, Lirelle leans over to reach for the tray of food left beside the bed, mostly cleaned except for a lone dinner roll, slowly going stale by itself. Stretching, she fumbled until her fingers curled around the unused butterknife, the motion jostling her companion and earning her an unhappy flare of warmth. “Sorry, sorry, give me a second.”

Prize in hand, she waved it in front of Grace, recalling how smitten she had been with the shiny teaspoon she had managed to pilfer the last time Caeliri had come to visit. “You want another one? Actually technically it belongs to the menders, but if you really won’t give it up afterwards I’ll pay them for it.”

Perking up, Grace stared at the spoon, her neck stretching out and her head starting to bob back and forth as Lirelle dangled it, though just as she reached her beak out to grab it, Lirelle tossed it across the bed. “Ow! Hey, no biting!” Sucking on her singed finger, she reached over the disgruntled bird for the roll, pulling off a piece and holding it in her palm. “You go get the knife and bring it back, and I’ll give you the bread, okay? And then maybe I’ll be able to get you to retrieve things by the time Caeliri comes back for you, okay?”

For a while, Grace did not budge, her tiny talons picking at the blanket while she contemplated her choices, though her repeated looks at the morsel of food at least showed she was considering things. Finally, the allure of food got the best of her and she fluttered to the knife, picking it up with her beak and tossing it in Lirelle’s general direction, letting out a demanding peep at the end.

“No, you have to bring it back, and then I’ll give you the bread,” holding it out enticingly, she mimed towards the knife, pointing at it and then beckoning towards herself in a bid to get Grace to understand.

The phoenix puffed her feathers up in annoyance, chirping again before begrudgingly picking up the spoon and awkwardly hobbling it over, letting it drop on her stomach before reaching out for the bread.

Lirelle laughed as Grace snatched it out of her fingers before shuffling a few paces away and transferring it to one foot, perching one legged as she bent down to rip off small shreds of the savoury dough to eat. “Good girl, now will you do it again? Go get it!”

Grabbing the knife before Grace could lay claim to it, she tossed it again, ripping another piece of bread off the roll as the bird skittered over to her new plaything. Nights in the infirmary were usually boring and lonely, but not this one.

@dorksworn @thepilgrimofwar for mentions, and thanks to @stormandozone for the title!

10

People saying nice things about Sebastian Stan - 12/?

[In which Chris Evans says nice things about Sebastian Stan

Thanks buzzfeed [x]

your father was an inventor. you knew better than to trust him in the center of town. he came home with scrap metal and built ships to glide on the grass. when you were young, you loved him for making. for a brief five years, you hated him, embarrassed of the town loon, embarrassed of what raised you.

but time shifts things. the man in town wants to marry you. a beautiful man by every account, and you hear many accounts. your nose in books doesn’t stop the stories of him: Gaston, bright, young, proud. Gaston, who could hunt and carve and flex his muscles. who forgot even himself what was true and what was fiction. it is a small village in paris, at the base of a kingdom. he is the bachelor you should have your heart set on. 

you try to teach yourself to love him. he grins at you over beer mugs. never reads the books you suggest to him, drops one in the mud. and one night you hear him, drunk and singing, laughing with the others about your father, the crazy.

that night your father brings you a single white rose from a garden. you kiss your father and think of Gaston’s log cabin, where you could live in comfort.

they come for your father in the night. he is the property of the prince, on account of theft. his hands should be cut off and sewn to the walls of his house, to remind him of his failures. an inventor without hands is a death sentence. they come with fire and hatred. rip you out of bed. your knees hit the mud. you’re too small to fight them. they tear your father away from you, and your heart out of your chest.

you run to gaston. tall, fast, manly. you beg him. it’s a mistake, you cry, you must help - you gulp - and then we will marry. 

gaston laughs and slams oak door against nose. you stumble back, feeling like a knife is in your throat. you take the wagon horse and ride improper, legs spread and bent forward, none of the lady your mother would have wanted. you ride for the life of your father.

at the door of the castle you stop. it is raining. you shout and rave and beg anything. take me, you scream, if you’re listening i’ll do anything. what do you promise on that doorstep, crying yourself empty? what do you promise to keep him alive, to keep him whole, to keep him healthy?

the door opens late. no one is there. you remember, suddenly, the tale of the beast who lives here, who ate the prince, who is terrifying. you think you hear your father and suddenly you are running, following his voice down dark hallways with no ending. 

he is in a cell. his head is bleeding. you feel your breath hitch. 

“will you?” a voice says, “will you trade yourself for your father, take responsibility for his sin?”

“he’s innocent,” you snarl, “you animals.”

“the rose, belle,” he whispers, and you stare at him. a white rose that is wilting beside your bedside would have been the death of him.

“take me,” you say, somehow empty and full at the same time, “if that’s what you need.”

the first night is ugly. you spend it crying. 

over time, the castle learns you, and you learn it. you think you are imagining the talking furniture for most of it. invisible hands whisk food in and out, bring you ball gowns and petticoats and delicate flowers. 

and always, the beast. at first, you were terrified of it. always in the shadows. moving like a ghost, prowling. tall, slim. menacing. never showing any skin, any proof it might be human.

but time and comfort destroy fears. you don’t run when it is in the room, you no longer shield your face in fear. it wears a mask, and this is how you know it really must be beastly. 

it is the second winter when you, playing snowball fights with the statues - you manage to hit the beast in the face. you freeze, and the panic from the day they took your father returns in a firework.

but then the beast is throwing back. and you are laughing. the next morning it is at breakfast with you, and lunch. it comes and goes, and never speaks. laughs, sometimes, you think. talks with its hands. the furniture translates. you learn, because you are good at learning. the hands that mean can i come in? the hands that mean are you hungry? the hands that mean is it okay if i read next to you, here this book is good, i found this for you.

each morning you wake up with white roses by your bedside. you learn to talk a little louder than you’re used to, to move your own hands in a way that acknowledges the beast. it is strange that you were a quiet girl and now you are comfortable shouting. the two of you have your own language, together. it teaches you swordfighting, you teach it dancing. it teaches you archery and you teach it cooking. you walk through the gardens together. there are moments where your hands touch and for some reason you blush like it was kissing. you’ve never had someone who understands you so completely. sometimes you tell it about far-away stories. sometimes you tell it about your village. and sometimes, when you are raw, you tell it about gaston and the marriage you didn’t want and your father and his insanity

one of these nights the beast brings you the mirror. you cry when you see your father. and the beast is pulling you, running, picking out a horse from the stables, gesturing. go, go. you cry when you leave.

you save your father. tell him you’ll bring him back to the beast. do you talk too loud? is gaston only mad you never belonged to him? when the raid starts, you are still taking care of your father. outside, voices, ringing. kill the beast. you think of hands, dancing in the air to speak, and you think you have never heard something so ugly. you’re ashamed to be this species.

you ride in their wake, your father safe. you ride that same panicked race as three years ago to the day. 

you fight, because the beast taught you how. the castle fights, because it is protecting its life. and the beast - you watch the flash of a blade, careful not to kill - the ability you once mistook for savagery. 

it isn’t enough. gaston, and a gun. the three of you stand on the balcony, you in between. again you are begging this man, who means nothing. “leave the beast,” you say, “take me.”

“i’ll have both,” he says, and shoots. you feel the bullet streak by you. the beast is all movement, has pushed you out of the way. they grapple, and you scream when the beast falls, skittering. gaston marches over and you move without thinking. he falls into the night silently. 

you can’t get there quick enough. you gather the beast into your lap, begging be okay. at the mask, you whisper something, and then say it again with your hands. i love you, you say. you were the best thing to happen to me.

the mask slips. a voice says, “belle,” and you are hit with the full force of something that feels like music. you can’t breathe. 

the girl beneath the mask is beautiful. her blonde hair spills across your legs. she touches your face and her hands say i’m okay, and you’re laughing. you kiss her and roses open up in you. 

“i thought you were a beast,” you say with hands and lips a hair above hers, “and here you are, the beauty.”

she smiles sheepishly. it is hard when you are like me. 

your are sobbing. you kiss her again, because you can, because she’s here and perfect and the answer to questions you didn’t know you had been asking. 

her hands, curious, worried, search for your wet cheeks. i’m okay, really, belle. you saved me.

funny, your hands dance, i was about to say the same thing.

After screaming, [Cassandra] calls out the name of Apollo sixth times, then again a seventh time, but the seventh time, by shifting the inflexion of the name slightly, she shows its etymology. Apollo’s name is cognate with the Greek verb apollesthai, “to destroy utterly, kill, slay, demolish, lay waste.” By crying out “Apollon emos”, Cassandra can designate the god as “my Apollo” and “my destroyer” at the same time in the same words.
—  Anne Carson, excerpt of Cassandra Float Can, from Float
2

Tord: Uh, sorry but I do not know who is this “Tom” person you’re talking about, and I don’t understand why do you associate me with him so much. But, I remember Edd occasionally mentioning he had a friend named Tom and that’s it.

Ah, and thanks for the cookies.

au where Neil and Katelyn work at a coffee shop, the twins are frequent visitors but rarely do they ever go in together.

  • Andrew tends to go to the cafe around the time Neil has a shift and Aaron when Katelyn has shift (have they shifted their schedules to accommodate for a certain cute barista, no of course not, pfft)
  • Andrew likes to annoy Neil by telling him he made his drink wrong(tells him he wants a free drink next time he comes in). neil hates him and does give him a free drink only to have it be the sweetest concoction ever(bc who could like something so poisonously sweet) Spoiler alert: Andrew does. Cue his salute and “better luck next time” as he exits the cafe
  • next time andrew comes in neil makes him most bitter black coffee ever.
  • andrew is all like challenge accepted and looks neil straight in the eye as he pours nearly half the sugar container into his cup of coffee. raises the cup to him as if toasting to him, ‘cheers’ and walks out of the fucking cafe
  • Neil doesn’t realize he’s been giving andrew a free drink every time he comes. andrew however does.
  • katelyn flirts with aaron every time he comes in. their encounters are a mix of awkward chatter and flirtations. aaron has been trying to ask her for her number for some time now. katelyn has been getting up the courage to write her number on his cup
  • neil comes in to relieve katelyn of her shift and sees one of the twins just walk out of the shop and he tells her how much of an asshole he is and katelyn is like what?? you’re wrong. katelyn is like his name is aaron and he’s a sweetheart and neil is like his name is andrew and he’s a fucking ass
  • so in order to prove each other wrong they move their schedules around to have several shifts together.(this also confuses the twins because like what happened to their cute barista)
  • matt and dan work the register, both have a sneaking suspicion that they are twins but they don’t say anything because they think it’s hilarious.they also have a bet going on as to who will realize it first. matt bets on neil(of course). they are sure to put themselves on the same shift as neil and katelyn
  • aaron walks in while they are both working and neil watches as aaron completely ignores him in favor of katelyn. and he smiles and laughs and what the fuck. and katelyn gets the courage to put her phone number on the cup, feeling all triumphant over neil
  • neil is actually offended(which actually surprises neil because he should be glad he is ignoring him but he’s not, how dare this fucker not talk to him after all the shit he has put neil through) and is about to go off on him when andrew walks in.
  • aaron and andrew both look at each like what the fuck are you doing here
  • and katelyn and neil look at each other like, they’re fucking twins
  • dan and matt call it a draw
  • neil writes his number on andrew’s cup because why the fuck not

Stop giving Bernie credit for minimally doing his job 2k4ever

2

a series of unlikely crossovers

Letting Go of The Old Cycle - Remember THIS IS THE PAST.

These coming days have been very intense energetically been personally on hibernating mode. we’re entering a very heavy energetic period because we’re losing a LOT of past baggage. We must think about this, we entered the new year IN a retrograde.

The way I see we set ourselves up to build a fantastic foundation for the new year. We’re purging a lot of past baggage and even pieces of our ancestral lineage. Mercury Retrograde is a bit like time traveling, we’re revisiting the past from a different perspective. Mercury allows us to do a soul evaluation - what is working and what is horribly not working anymore in our lives?

Tomorrow Mercury moves direct. So if you could imagine yourself on a ride, we’re slowing down, reaching the end of the old cycle. the last bits of 2016 are leaving us and we’re starting to welcome the new energy with open arms.

The resistance many of us are feeling is OUR PAST BAGGAGE. Not your present. Rather than just exclaiming this is all negative and polarity like, dig deeper and ask how does this connect to my past? What is the lesson here? What do I need to see?

Remember this is just the Past. Keep Pushing through the resistance and you’ll pop out on the other side.

love you all,
Ash