@thebritishscyphozoa is an amazing human who made this mood board for my LARP character, Raven Black
Raven is an employee of Tactical Studies Rules Incorporated (TSR INC) circa 1987. She had a deep and unyielding crush on a woman named Claire Burgess which she could not admit because Regan era and the AIDS crisis. Claire was killed by a vampire outside a goth club in Milwaukee and Raven was powerless to stop this (yes, I know, bury your lesbians, and I am sorry). In her hunt for justice, Raven was drawn into a much deeper conspiracy around time travel, dreams, and the collective subconscious. Now she fights to understand the deeper truths of the universe and struggles to survive in a world that never made sense but now makes way less sense.
Chris Ware in “From Here to There,” by David Collier, from his book Just the Facts: A Decade of Comics Essays (1998).
This is such a funny send-up of the kind of nostalgia and collecting that many of us are prone to. I photographed this page in two parts to capture the detail as much as possible, but it still doesn’t do justice to Collier’s line work. Buy his books!
You and Michael have been dating ever since David was a toddler and even have your own children as well. But 16 years after Michael woke up and she was gone, his real mother turns up on the doorstep.
“3 down and one to go.” You mumbled to yourself, moving around the kitchen in your dressing gown.
“C'mon David! You need to get to school!” You shouted through the house. You heard the heavy footsteps above you as an arm suddenly grabbed your waist. You gasped as you felt the gentle kiss just underneath the back of your neck. You felt the scratch of unshaven hair against your skin.
“You did book all of today off, didn’t you?” The gravelly voice asked you. You nodded, twisting your body under your husbands grasp to turn to face him. Taking his face in your hands you kissed him full on the lips, eyes fluttering closed as if you were 10 years younger again.
“Can you please leave all that stuff until after I leave for school please?” You pulled back with a grin on your face to the unimpressed teenager in the kitchen doorway.
“We’re your parents. We can do what we want.” Michael told him, slipping away from you to ruffle his hair like he always does.
“You coming back here tonight?” You asked, sliding him his drink.
“Yep. It’s movie night, right?” You nodded at him, smiling at the boy. He would never miss a chance to be with his family. One of the many things you were lucky for. Michael says you are the reason he turned out the way he is. The motherly figure that guided him as he grew. He would always put all of you first and despite what you said, Michael always insisted it was all down to you.
There was a knock at the door.
“Who would that be?” Mike asked.
“Probably Nina’s forgotten something. I’ll get it.” You said, marching past the boys and reaching for the doorknob.
You were surprised to not be met by the 12 year old twin but a tall slender woman, with black straight hair and slight wrinkles. She looked about your age but dressed as if she was still 21, in high heeled boots, skinny jeans and a black leather jacket. And the irony was, that she looked surprised to see you too.
“Hi. Who are you?” She asked bluntly and rudely.
“I’m Y/N. Can I help you?” You asked her, as she took her sunglasses off of her head and closed them up.
“I’m looking for Michael and David Clifford. Are they here?” She asked, trying to peer behind your shoulder. At that moment you felt quite small, in your dressing gown and fluffy slippers standing in front of someone who could easily be mistaken for a model.
“Umm, yeah sure. Mike! Dave!” You called back as your son came bounding down the hallway.
“Yeah.” He breathed, darting his eyes between you and the woman.
“This lady was asking for you.” You told her.
“Wow.” She breathed, a smirk on her lips.
“You certainly are your father’s son.” She commented.
“Excuse me?” David had a furrowed brow on him as Michael came walking up behind you, his eyebrows doing the same expression as he asked:
“Lily?” The woman smiled and shrugged her shoulders at him.
“Surprise!” She did jazz hands as Michael stared at her in shock.
“Dad, who’s this?” David asked.
“Son. Lily here is your… Biological mother.”
“Why is she still here?“David muttered to you as he came to wash his hands before dinner.
“She invited herself, we couldn’t say no. She wanted to see you Dave.” You explained.
“Well I don’t want to see her. Where has she been the last sixteen years, hm?” He asked you before walking away.
You and Michael both carried the 7 meals into the dining room before both sitting down yourself.
“So… Y/N,” she said your name as if it was an accusation.
“How long have you and Michael been together?” She asked, picking at her food.
“Umm, we’ve been together for 14 years and married for 11.” You told her and she nodded. You instantly felt her eyes go to the ring on your finger.
“And who are these 3?” She asked, looking around the table.
“These are the twins, Nina and Jack and that’s little Xavier at the end.” Michael told her.
“What about you David? What do you like? What are you interested in?”
“Why would you care? You haven’t cared for the last 16 years.” He mumbled, but loud enough for everyone at the table to hear.
“David-” you were interrupted when she said:
“Oh no it’s alright. I understand. It’s just common sense. I didn’t expect anything else.” She smiled sweetly at the boy who seemed to be giving her a death glare.
“But I got you something.” She said, reaching into her bag. Pulling out various chocolate bars she laid them on the table.
“I spent time travelling the world and collected all the delicacies.” She told him smiling.
“I can’t eat that.” He told her plainly.
“Why not?” She asked.
“He’s allergic to coco beans. He eats chocolate, his glands swell and he can’t breathe.” You added. All of a sudden you were the one receiving the death glare.
“He doesn’t need you to speak for him.”
“I don’t need you to speak for me either.” He told her.
“I just think Y/N here needs to remember that she’s not your mother, I am.” She told him.
“She’s more of my mother than you are.” He defended you as you looked down at your hands, instantly feeling uncomfortable in the situation.
“I carried you around for 9 months-”
“And she’s looked after me for 15 years. Where have you been?” David pushed, almost shouting at the woman as he stood up.
“You don’t get to have a say in this. You have no right to insult her.”
“David-” you said meekly.
“No. No. She’s not allowed to come in here and presume it’s all gonna be happy family’s. She can’t just assume I’m going to like her, or you’re going to leave, or Dad’s going to forgive her. Because that’s not how it works. She can’t just disappear for 16 years and then come back and speak to me like I’m 4 again. She’s not allowed to make you feel small.” He told you.
“Dave, sit down man.” Michael told him as he huffed and sat beside you. You rested your hand on your thigh for fingers to be laced through. You looked down and across at your son as he squeezed your hand and gave you a reassuring smile.
“So, ummm,” Lily laughed awkwardly after the silence.
“Where did you and Y/N meet Michael?” She asked.
“Y/N was David’s primary school teacher. We met at a parent-teacher conference.” He told her.
“Oh. So was Y/N overly fond of David or-”
“If your going to suggest anything else Lily I would advise you not to.” Mike told her and nodded at you.
“Wow. You guys really stick together don’t you?” She asked.
“We’re all a very close family.” David told her.
David began to stand up again.
“Mum, will you come and help me bring in dessert?” Both you and Lily moved at the same time.
“I meant Y/N.” He told Lily as you stood up and walked out of the room. You stopped at the island in the middle of the kitchen and put your head sighing. You felt so small, so intimidating, so out of place. You didn’t belong here.
Then you felt the two arms clinging around your body as he lay his head on your shoulder.
“Just ignore her.” He whispered in your ear. You sniffled.
“I feel like such an idiot.” You told him, turning around to the lanky boy behind you.
“You’re not an idiot. She’s a bitch-”
“Language.” You scolded as you wiped your face.
“See! It is reasons like that you are my mother. You are my Mum. Not her, not anybody else. You are my Mum.” He took your shoulders and crouched down slightly to meet your height.
“I am Daniel Clifford, and you are Y/N Clifford and back in there is your husband Michael Clifford and we have never been anything less. That woman in there has never loved me or she would’ve stayed. She can’t just turn up here and shove you out the way.”
“But she is your mother David.” You gulped and sighed.
“Biologically, she gave birth to me. But giving birth in this situation isn’t what makes a mother. A mother is caring, kind, protective, concerned, loving. That’s all you. Not her.” David took you by the shoulder so you could look him in the eyes directly.
“You have always been my Mum. And you will be. And I love you. Not her.” You wrapped your arms around his torso as you cried into his chest.
“I love you too.” You mumbled into his shirt.
You felt a third pair of arms wrap around you and your son. A kiss was placed on the top of your head as your son drew back as well.
“I kicked Lily out. I found her trying to convince Xavier to tell her you molested him. She wanted to try and take custody of David.” Michael told you. David strode away from the situation, grunting in frustration.
“I found her trying to record him. He wouldn’t say yes.” Mike shrugged.
“That! That is the lengths that woman will go to! Please tell me she’s not coming back!”
“If she does show her face again, then she has no self-respect.” Michael told him.
“And I’m making sure she doesn’t set foot in this house or near any of you again.” You told him.
“Now,” You said.
“Help me grab these bowls of ice cream. I believe there’s a disney film unwatched.”
the child of the goddess was originally one, but through the plans and acts of the black mage commanders the child was split into two;
one of them was cursed and became the puppet he never wanted to be;
through his last moments of freedom he only wished for one that whoever the girl who resided in the desolate temple was to be free.
as the temple crumbled from destruction, his wish opened her eyes and and allowed her to flee at the nick of time;
and now she travels, collecting fragments of her mother’s tears
as well as plotting to save her other half with no fears.
“Wait for me,Alpha. I’ll save you.”
like you should have done for me.
// a huge thank you to @asking-jay / @internet-demigodand @askfemlumi for helping me out with lining this. i might’ve actually died from overexertion if it weren’t for these two mvps helping me out. give them lots of praise and love