when we say surviving is an accomplishment we are not kidding

All about the tickets and a kiss (Ethan)

Summary: Ethan surprises you with a date going to an arcade and you guys make a deal. Whoever gets the most tickets takes all. 

Warnings: None. Awful summary though. 

A/N: I always wanted to go on a date to the arcade, and with Ethan, it would be so fun. The arcade is like Dave and Busters I just didn’t state it. I hope you guys like this! 

It’s been four months since I started dating Ethan, it’s been amazing so far. We were always close friends, but eventually, we caught feelings and things went from there.

Right now I was getting dressed to go on a date with him. He said he had a surprise for me but to dress casually. Which I did black jeans, a tank top with a red and black flannel I borrowed from Ethan, and my Vans. Maybe it was a picnic date? Or a trip to the movies. Whatever it is I’m sure I will love it.

He always does something extra it’s just in his personality. I looked in the mirror one last time fixing a strand of hair that was out of place. Soon. I heard knocking on my door, must be Ethan. I grabbed my phone and bag, then went running towards the door, trying not to trip. I was clumsy good at falling over nothing but Ethan was there to make sure I was okay then laugh at me after.

I opened the door and there stood Ethan, I took his appearance in still amazed by how beautiful he looks. He was dressed in a gray jumper, black jeans with rips that he made himself, and Vans that were matching mine. Something so simple, but he makes it look good.

“Take a picture it will last longer,” he smirked glazing over me.

“Shut up E,” I giggled giving him a hug. I inhaled his cologne in the embrace, something I do to remember the small things about him. “Where are we going?”

He looked down at me still holding me in his arms. “It’s a surprise.”

I frowned knowing him it’s probably something extra that he didn’t need to do, I was never one for surprises and he knows this. It doesn’t stop him from doing it anyways.

“Frowning like that will give you wrinkles babe,” he joked.

I rolled my eyes but smiled nevertheless. “Let’s go before you get memory loss,” I said grabbing his hand leading him his towards his car. He opened the door for me, I got in putting on my seat belt. He ran over to the driver’s side and got in.

He put on his seat belt then turned on the car, ‘Slow Hands’ came on the radio. I hum the tune as he backed out of the parking spot. I started singing the lyrics to the song.

Soon Ethan joined me in singing the song. It was always fun jamming out with him, sometimes he gets way into it and I have to remind him to focus back on the road. We have been driving for about 20 minutes I only know because I check my phone.

“Are we there yet?” I whined turning to look at him. I was also enjoying his beauty, the sharp jawline and fluffy hair that was my weakness.

“Almost,” he answered his lips lifting up into a smile.

He turned the wheel and we pulled up in a parking lot. I look at the building and saw that we were at an arcade. I start smiling like a kid going to a toy store. I was talking about going to an arcade a few weeks ago and he actually surprised me with this.

“Ethan,” I whispered still taking it all in. It was something simple I didn’t need an expensive restaurant date or anything too crazy. It was the little things that mattered to me.

He found a parking space and turned off the car, “Are you surprised? Is this okay?” He asked looking worried that I didn’t like it.

“This is perfect E, we could just cuddle on the couch as a date and I would be perfectly happy,” I said then went to kiss his cheek.

He laughed and then we got out the car walking hand to hand to the entrance. When we got in it was a line at the front desk, it was crowded but what do you inspect on a Saturday evening. The walls and carpet were some crazy patterns, the bright light lit up the place, some pop song I didn’t know blasted through the area.

I heard the different games going off and the people talking and laughing. It was filled with high energy as it should be and I couldn’t wait to play the games. Ethan paid for our passes and we got our cards with the money on it.
“Where to first?” Ethan asked.

I looked around and saw the basketball game called Super Shot. I was decent at basketball and Ethan was to, so it should be easy tickets. Start with the easy stuff and work our way up.

I pointed over to it. “Let’s start with basketball.”

He nodded and we walked over to it, we slide our cards in the slots.

“I bet I’ll get more tickets than you,” I challenged.

“Okay, let’s make a deal whoever gets the most tickets with all the games we play the winner gets to pick out the prize with all the tickets both parties won.” He said grabbing a ball.

“Deal,” I replied also picking up the orange ball.

“And a kiss,” he declared turning to glance at me.

“I laughed. “Fine with me, now let’s play.”

We pressed the start button and the buzzer sound went off, the countdown started. I threw the ball and it made it in the hoop, I threw the second ball and it missed, bouncing off the rim of the basket. I groaned but continued to throw ball after ball my score going up.

I heard the tickets come out of the machine I hope I have more than Ethan. The time ran out and I saw I scored more and I pumped my fist in the air.

“Looks like I am in the lead,” I said grabbing my tickets. Ethan bend down and got his.

“It’s not over yet Y/N,” he responded looking for another game to play. I love it when he gets competitive.

The evening turned into night and we played many games.
Spin the wheel, Pac-Man, skeeball, air hockey, speed of light, and the dancing game. We ate at the bar we weren’t old enough to order alcohol but we didn’t need it anyway. After we ate, we played a few more games that didn’t involve tickets. Like a game called Dark Escape 4D, it had monsters in it and you had to shoot them to survive. It came with 3D glasses and you could feel the creature’s breath on you.

Honestly, my favorite game here with Ethan not so much. Soon it was time to count the tickets we been collecting so went over to the counter for the worker to count them in this container.

“Who do you think going to win?” Ethan asked.

“Um…I think me,” I answered putting my finger under my chin acting like I was thinking hard about it.

“If you say so,” he replied turning back to the worker.

The employee turned towards me with my paper with how many tickets I won. “You have 1167,” she said. Then she turned to Ethan holding out his paper. “And you have 1065,”

I smiled feeling accomplished that I got that many tickets. “Looks like I won,” I beamed.

“Yeah, you did let’s go pick out your prize,” he said grabbing my hand leading me to the prize area,

It was so much to pick from of course some of the stuff was too much, I don’t know how they think people could get that many tickets. I looked around to see what caught my eye, I really wasn’t going to use Ethan’s tickets. He deserved to get what he wants even with the deal.

“What do you want Ethan?” I questioned.

“You mean what you want you won the deal fair and square.”

“What about we get something we both like then? I’m not taking no for an answer.”

“Is that what you really want?” He asked making sure.

I nodded happily, glad he was agreeing with me. After some time of looking around saying why so many points for that thing or no I don’t want that. We agreed on this big Batman plushie, it looked like a cute monkey. We also got some candy since we had a few points left over.

We got our things going back out to head to the car. Today was a long day but it was worth it spending time with Ethan. When we got to the car Ethan stopped me from putting the Bat monkey in the car that was twice my size.

“You forgot a part of the deal Y/N,” he addressed.

“Ah, I did,” I replied pretending like I didn’t know what he wanted.

“I want the lips,” he demanded pouting.

“Oh, you do,” I teased. Before he could respond I stood on my tip toes since he was a few inches taller than me. I closed my eyes and kissed him, his lips were soft and tasted like the virgin strawberry daiquiri he had. His hands ran through my thick curly hair, I was going to do a quick peck on the lips to tease him but he was going in with a passionate kiss.

I melted into his kiss my heart fluttered, it amazes me even after this time he still makes me feel this way. I nibbled on his bottom lip then pulled away catching my breath. I realized we just made out in public but I didn’t care.

“The best boyfriend ever,” I said giving him a hug with Batman at the side of us.

“The best girlfriend ever,” he said kissing the top of my head.

“I had a wonderful day thank you so much, Ethan,” I responded.

“You’re welcome now let’s go to your house to cuddle,” he said letting go of me. I smiled glad to have a guy like him in my life.

I actually have a Bat Monkey that I won, it takes up half of the room in my bed. But I’m happy I got it. Anyways, Ethan is amazing! He would be the best boyfriend.

Revolutionary Hope: A Conversation Between James Baldwin and Audre Lorde

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JB: One of the dangers of being a Black American is being schizophrenic, and I mean ‘schizophrenic’ in the most literal sense. To be a Black American is in some ways to be born with the desire to be white. It’s a part of the price you pay for being born here, and it affects every Black person. We can go back to Vietnam, we can go back to Korea. We can go back for that matter to the First World War. We can go back to W.E.B. Du Bois – an honorable and beautiful man – who campaigned to persuade Black people to fight in the First World War, saying that if we fight in this war to save this country, our right to citizenship can never, never again be questioned – and who can blame him? He really meant it, and if I’d been there at that moment I would have said so too perhaps. Du Bois believed in the American dream. So did Martin. So did Malcolm. So do I. So do you. That’s why we’re sitting here.

AL: I don’t, honey. I’m sorry, I just can’t let that go past. Deep, deep, deep down I know that dream was never mine. And I wept and I cried and I fought and I stormed, but I just knew it. I was Black. I was female. And I was out – out – by any construct wherever the power lay. So if I had to claw myself insane, if I lived I was going to have to do it alone. Nobody was dreaming about me. Nobody was even studying me except as something to wipe out.

JB: You are saying you do not exist in the American dream except as a nightmare.

AL: That’s right. And I knew it every time I opened Jet, too. I knew that every time I opened a Kotex box. I knew that every time I went to school. I knew that every time I opened a prayer book. I knew it, I just knew it.

JB: It is difficult to be born in a place where you are despised and also promised that with endeavor – with this, with that, you know – you can accomplish the impossible. You’re trying to deal with the man, the woman, the child – the child of whichever sex – and he or she and your man or your woman has got to deal with the 24-hour-a-day facts of life in this country. We’re not going to fly off someplace else, you know, we’d better get through whatever that day is and still have each other and still raise children – somehow manage all of that. And this is 24 hours of every day, and you’re surrounded by all of the paraphernalia of safety: If you can strike this bargain here. If you can make sure your armpits are odorless. Curl your hair. Be impeccable. Be all the things that the American public says you should do, right? And you do all those things – and nothing happens really. And what is much worse than that, nothing happens to your child either.

AL: Even worse than the nightmare is the blank. And Black women are the blank. I don’t want to break all this down, then have to stop at the wall of male/female division. When we admit and deal with difference; when we deal with the deep bitterness; when we deal with the horror of even our different nightmares; when we turn them and look at them, it’s like looking at death: hard but possible. If you look at it directly without embracing it, then there is much less that you can ever be made to fear.

JB: I agree.

AL: Well, in the same way when we look at our differences and not allow ourselves to be divided, when we own them and are not divided by them, that is when we will be able to move on. But we haven’t reached square one yet.

JB: I’m not sure of that. I think the Black sense of male and female is much more sophisticated than the western idea. I think that Black men and women are much less easily thrown by the question of gender or sexual preference – all that jazz. At least that is true of my experience.

AL: Yea, but let’s remove ourselves from merely a reactive position – i.e., Black men and women reacting to what’s out there. While we are reacting to what’s out there, we’re also dealing between ourselves – and between ourselves there are power differences that come down…

JB: Oh, yes…

AL: Truly dealing with how we live, recognizing each other’s differences, is something that hasn’t happened…

JB: Differences and samenesses.

AL: Differences and samenesses. But in a crunch, when all our asses are in the sling, it looks like it is easier to deal with the samenesses. When we deal with sameness only, we develop weapons that we use against each other when the differences become apparent. And we wipe each other out – Black men and women can wipe each other out – far more effectively than outsiders do.

JB: That’s true enough.

AL: And our blood is high, our furies are up. I mean, it’s what Black women do to each other, Black men do to each other, and Black people do to each other. We are in the business of wiping each other out in one way or the other – and essentially doing our enemy’s work.

JB: That’s quite true.

AL: We need to acknowledge those power differences between us and see where they lead us. An enormous amount of energy is being taken up with either denying the power differences between Black men and women or fighting over power differences between Black men and women or killing each other off behind them. I’m talking about Black women’s blood flowing in the streets – and how do we get a 14-year-old boy to know I am not the legitimate target of his fury? The boot is on both of our necks. Let’s talk about getting it off. My blood will not wash out your horror. That’s what I’m interested in getting across to adolescent Black boys.

There are little Black girl children having babies. But this is not an immaculate conception, so we’ve got little Black boys who are making babies, too. We have little Black children making little Black children. I want to deal with that so our kids will not have to repeat that waste of themselves.

JB: I hear you – but let me backtrack, for better or worse. You know, for whatever reason and whether it’s wrong or right, for generations men have come into the world, either instinctively knowing or believing or being taught that since they were men they in one way or another had to be responsible for the women and children, which means the universe.

AL: Mm-hm.

JB: I don’t think there’s any way around that.

AL: Any way around that now?

JB: I don’t think there’s any way around that fact.

AL: If we can put people on the moon and we can blow this whole planet up, if we can consider digging 18 inches of radioactive dirt off of the Bikini atolls and somehow finding something to do with it – if we can do that, we as Black cultural workers can somehow begin to turn that stuff around – because there’s nobody anymore buying ‘cave politics’ – ‘Kill the mammoth or else the species is extinct.’ We have moved beyond that. Those little scrubby-ass kids in the sixth grade – I want those Black kids to know that brute force is not a legitimate way of dealing across sex difference. I want to set up some different paradigms.

JB: Yea, but there’s a real difference between the way a man looks at the world…

AL: Yes, yes…

JB: And the way a woman looks at the world. A woman does know much more than a man.

AL: And why? For the same reason Black people know what white people are thinking: because we had to do it for our survival…

JB: All right, all right…

AL: We’re finished being bridges. Don’t you see? It’s not Black women who are shedding Black men’s blood on the street – yet. We’re not cleaving your head open with axes. We’re not shooting you down. We’re saying, “Listen, what’s going on between us is related to what’s going on between us and other people,” but we have to solve our own shit at the same time as we’re protecting our Black asses, because if we don’t, we are wasting energy that we need for joint survival.

JB: I’m not even disagreeing – but if you put the argument in that way, you see, a man has a certain story to tell, too, just because he is a man…

AL: Yes, yes, and it’s vital that I be alive and able to listen to it.

JB: Yes. Because we are the only hope we have. A family quarrel is one thing; a public quarrel is another. And you and I, you know – in the kitchen, with the kids, with each other or in bed – we have a lot to deal with, with each other, but we’ve got to know what we’re dealing with. And there is no way around it. There is no way around it. I’m a man. I am not a woman.

AL: That’s right, that’s right.

JB: No one will turn me into a woman. You’re a woman and you’re not a man. No one will turn you into a man. And we are indispensable for each other, and the children depend on us both.

AL: It’s vital for me to be able to listen to you, to hear what is it that defines you and for you to listen to me, to hear what is it that defines me – because so long as we are operating in that old pattern, it doesn’t serve anybody, and it certainly hasn’t served us.

JB: I know that. What I really think is that neither of us has anything to prove, at least not in the same way, if we weren’t in the North American wilderness. And the inevitable dissension between brother and sister, between man and woman – let’s face it, all those relations which are rooted in love also are involved in this quarrel. Because our real responsibility is to endlessly redefine each other. I cannot live without you, and you cannot live without me – and the children can’t live without us.

AL: But we have to define ourselves for each other. We have to redefine ourselves for each other because no matter what the underpinnings of the distortion are, the fact remains that we have absorbed it. We have all absorbed this sickness and ideas in the same way we absorbed racism. It’s vital that we deal constantly with racism, and with white racism among Black people – that we recognize this as a legitimate area of inquiry. We must also examine the ways that we have absorbed sexism and heterosexism. These are the norms in this dragon we have been born into – and we need to examine these distortions with the same kind of openness and dedication that we examine racism…

JB: You use the word ‘racism’…

AL: The hatred of Black, or color…

JB: - but beneath the word ‘racism’ sleeps the word ‘safety.’ Why is it important to be white or Black?

AL: Why is it important to be a man rather than a woman?

JB: In both cases, it is assumed that it is safer to be white than to be Black. And it’s assumed that it is safer to be a man than to be a woman. These are both masculine assumptions. But those are the assumptions that we’re trying to overcome or to confront…

AL: To confront, yeah. The vulnerability that lies behind those masculine assumptions is different for me and you, and we must begin to look at that…

JB: Yes, yes…

AL: And the fury that is engendered in the denial of that vulnerability – we have to break through it because there are children growing up believe that it is legitimate to shed female blood, right? I have to break through it because those boys really think that the sign of their masculinity is impregnating a sixth grader. I have to break through it because of that little sixth-grade girl who believes that the only thing in life she has is what lies between her legs…

JB: Yeah, but we’re not talking now about men and women. We’re talking about a particular society. We’re talking about a particular time and place. You were talking about the shedding of Black blood in the streets, but I don’t understand –

AL: Okay, the cops are killing the men and the men are killing the women. I’m talking about rape. I’m talking about murder.

JB: I’m not disagreeing with you, but I do think you’re barking up the wrong tree. I’m not trying to get the Black man off the hook – or Black women, for that matter – but I am talking about the kingdom in which we live.

AL: Yes, I absolutely agree; the kingdom in which these distortions occur has to be changed.

JB: Something happens to the man who beats up a lady. Something happens to the man who beats up his grandmother. Something happens to the junkie. I know that very well. I walked the streets of Harlem; I grew up there, right? Now you know it is not the Black cat’s fault who sees me and tries to mug me. I got to know that. It’s his responsibility but it’s not his fault. That’s a nuance. UI got to know that it’s not him who is my enemy even when he beats up his grandmother. His grandmother has got to know. I’m trying to say one’s got to see what drove both of us into those streets. We be both from the same track. Do you see what I mean? I’ve come home myself, you know, wanting to beat up anything in sight- but Audre, Audre…

AL: I’m here, I’m here…

JB: I agree with you. I see exactly what you mean and it hurts me at least as much as it hurts you. But how to maneuver oneself past this point – how not to lose him or her who may be in what is in effect occupied territory. That is really what the Black situation is in this country. For the ghetto, all that is lacking is barbed wire, and when you pen people up like animals, the intention is to debase them and you have debased them.

AL: Jimmy, we don’t have an argument

JB: I know we don’t.

AL: But what we do have is a real disagreement about your responsibility not just to me but to my son and to our boys. Your responsibility to him is to get across to him in a way that I never will be able to because he did not come out of my body and has another relationship to me. Your relationship to him as his farther is to tell him I’m not a fit target for his fury.

JB: Okay, okay…

AL: It’s so entrenched in him that it’s part of him as much as his Blackness is.

JB: All right, all right…

AL: I can’t do it. You have to.

JB: All right, I accept – the challenge is there in any case. It never occurred to me that it would be otherwise. That’s absolutely true. I simply want to locate where the danger is…

AL: Yeah, we’re at war…

JB: We are behind the gates of a kingdom which is determined to destroy us.

AL: Yes, exactly so. And I’m interested in seeing that we do not accept terms that will help us destroy each other. And I think one of the ways in which we destroy each other is by being programmed to knee-jerk on our differences. Knee-jerk on sex. Knee-jerk on sexuality…

JB: I don’t quite know what to do about it, but I agree with you. And I understand exactly what you mean. You’re quite right. We get confused with genders – you know, what the western notion of woman is, which is not necessarily what a woman is at all. It’s certainly not the African notion of what a woman is. Or even the European notion of what a woman is. And there’s certainly not standard of masculinity in this country which anybody can respect. Part of the horror of being a Black American is being trapped into being an imitation of an imitation.

AL: I can’t tell you what I wished you would be doing. I can’t redefine masculinity. I can’t redefine Black masculinity certainly. I am in the business of redefining Black womanness. You are in the business of redefining Black masculinity. And I’m saying, ‘Hey, please go on doing it,’ because I don’t know how much longer I can hold this fort, and I really feel that Black women are holding it and we’re beginning to hold it in ways that are making this dialogue less possible.

JB: Really? Why do you say that? I don’t feel that at all. It seems to me you’re blaming the Black man for the trap he’s in.

AL: I’m not blaming the Black man; I’m saying don’t shed my blood. I’m not blaming the Black man. I’m saying if my blood is being shed, at some point I’m gonna have a legitimate reason to take up a knife and cut your damn head off, and I’m not trying to do it.

JB: If you drive a man mad, you’ll turn him into a beast – it has nothing to do with his color.

AL: If you drive a woman insane, she will react like a beast too. There is a larger structure, a society with which we are in total and absolute war. We live in the mouth of a dragon, and we must be able to use each other’s forces to fight it together, because we need each other. I am saying that in our joint battle we have also developed some very real weapons, and when we turn them against each other they are even more bloody, because we know each other in a particular way. When we turn those weapons against each other, the bloodshed is terrible. Even worse, we are doing this in a structure where we are already embattled. I am not denying that. It is a family discussion I’m having now. I’m not laying blame. I do not blame Black men for what they are. I’m asking them to move beyond. I do not blame Black men; what I’m saying is, we have to take a new look at the ways in which we fight our joint oppression because if we don’t, we’re gonna be blowing each other up. We have to begin to redefine the terms of what woman is, what man is, how we relate to each other.

JB: But that demands redefining the terms of the western world…

AL: And both of us have to do it; both of us have to do it…

JB: But you don’t realize that in this republic the only real crime is to be a Black man?

AL: No, I don’t realize that. I realize the only crime is to be Black. I realize the only crime is to be Black, and that includes me too.

JB: A Black man has a prick, they hack it off. A Black man is a ****** when he tries to be a model for his children and he tries to protect his women. That is a principal crime in this republic. And every Black man knows it. And every Black woman pays for it. And every Black child. How can you be so sentimental as to blame the Black man for a situation which has nothing to do with him?

AL: You still haven’t come past blame. I’m not interested in blame, I’m interested in changing…

JB: May I tell you something? May I tell you something? I might be wrong or right.

AL: I don’t know – tell me.

JB: Do you know what happens to a man-?

AL: How can I know what happens to a man?

JB: Do you know what happens to a man when he’s ashamed of himself when he can’t find a job? When his socks stink? When he can’t protect anybody? When he can’t do anything? Do you know what happens to a man when he can’t face his children because he’s ashamed of himself? It’s not like being a woman…

AL: No, that’s right. Do you know what happens to a woman who gives birth, who puts that child out there and has to go out and hook to feed it? Do you know what happens to a woman who goes crazy and beats her kids across the room because she’s so full of frustration and anger? Do you know what that is? Do you know what happens to a lesbian who sees her woman and her child beaten on the street while six other guys are holding her? Do you know what that feels like?

JB: Mm-hm.

AL: Well then, in the same way you know how a woman feels, I know how a man feels, because it comes down to human beings being frustrated and distorted because we can’t protect the people we love. So now let’s start –

JB: All right, okay…

AL: - let’s start with that and deal.

Essence Magazine, 1984

A Reasonable Conclusion (Derek/Stiles/Lydia)

gingerqueen-lydiascream Prompt 2: Derek/Stiles/Lydia bringing a third person in

I know this is the triad that you wanted the most, so I decided to write it for you. I hope you enjoy it, bb! Fic #49 in my 2017 Prompt Challenge

A Reasonable Conclusion. Derek/Stiles/Lydia. Teen. Also on AO3.

Lydia has done her research and analyzed their current situation for months. She’s now come to a reasonable conclusion, and it’s time to share her findings with Stiles and Derek.

“It isn’t like this would be a hardship for me, you know?” Lydia studies Stiles intently, and he squirms in his chair because he’s not entirely sure what she’s seeing in his expression.

“It wouldn’t?” Stiles drags his fingers through his hair. “I mean, it doesn’t matter, does it? You’re still suggesting this to make me happy, and that’s not how relationships work. It’s not just about me. Same way it isn’t just about you, either.”

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The final act

Originally posted by sikanapanele

Donald Pierce x Reader


Request: Yes

Summary: Donald and you had an argument and Donald is blaming himself.

It’s been two weeks and four days since you left in the middle of the night. It’s been an impulsive decision, but now you think it was a smart choice. He brought you to the edge, every day a little further and you were willing to jump for him over it, but you couldn’t. Your mind stopped your heart from that decision. You love him, you still wait for him to knock on your door, but you know that he won’t.

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Ladies Drink Free/Playing House

The biggest reaction I had about this episode was about Claire, but since it’s slightly wanky, I’ll save it for the end so you don’t have to read it if you don’t want to. My other thoughts generally went into a Mick direction - who the hell is he, and what are they doing with him?

Because this guy - he’s supposed to be this bookworm who’s never seen any action, but at the same time he kept a remarkably cool head around the Alpha Vampire and, more importantly, he killed a kid without falling apart at all. No hesitation, no second thoughts, nothing. He’d spoken to her mom and all, and that made no difference. So now I’m kind of wondering - of course, narratively they decided it had to happen this way to establish a Claire precedent and give them something to fight about, but Mick wasn’t disturbed, or apologetic in the slightest. I mean - he’s not a psychopath, so there was this barely there sadness clinging to him, but it’s also clear that to him, these are animals, and, sure - it’s a shame to put down the family pet when it’s got rabies, but what can you do? It’s certainly not something that’ll make you sleep any less soundly. Plus, he was perfectly capable to hold his own during the investigation, and even saved Dean’s life at the end. I think Sam and Dean are underestimating this guy - assuming he’s just a squint and it’s Mr Ketch they got to worry about - and judging from next week’s promo, that’s something that will land them into a lot of trouble.

It’s also remarkable that they agreed to continue with this alliance at all, and it’s not clear, to me, what is forgivable and what isn’t in their world. Asa’s friend and that Alpha Vampire’s sidekick were exiled, or worse, but when Mary’s duplicity resulted in another hunter’s death, nothing much happened. Here we’ve got Mick killing a young girl and potentially damaging the investigation (they’re supposed to work as a team, right? and that girl had vital information into who the werewolf was), and yet he gets a second chance because, what, he knew about a method of curing lycanthropy which should never have worked? I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with it, per se, just that I don’t know where the line is anymore. Maybe that’s the point?

The other thing is, if Mick was played as a Cas parallel - in a very vague, ‘dorky and slightly unshaven guy with tan coat riding in the back of the Impala’ way, then I’m going to be superhappy that he cosplayed as one of Dean’s established crushes. I mean, Mick was wearing grey both at the beginning and at the end of the episode - he only changed into a deep blue shirt in time to be mistaken for Dr Sexy, so surely I’m not the only one who’s slightly suspicious about their motives or noticed the look Dean gave him?

I’m also happy about Dean ‘repression&deflection’ Winchester calling out Mick for not being open about his feelings (dude, seriously?).

And it was nice, as always, to see the storyline focusing on toxic masculinity and toxic heterosexual relationships and Dean being pissed at men who treat women like dirt. Someone who grew up like he did and lives a life of motels and random violence could very easily have been one of those ‘women are bitches’ fuckboys, and the fact he’s not never fails to warm my heart.

That said, time to use my mom voice and talk about Claire.

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Oopsy Daisey

length: 1,488 words

genre: fluff

summary: you take your 3 year old niece out for the day, but she decides to cause some trouble. Luckily taehyung is there to save the day

a/n: I changed the request a bit, but I think it still turned out really cute :)

Originally posted by jeonbase

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My Favorite Performances of 2016

These are the 15 movie roles this year I most felt deserved highlighting. Man, there were some great roles this year, introduction, introduction, introduction, how many words does this have to be? You don’t care and I certainly don’t. On to the list!(Note: except for the top two, this list is in no particular order).

Glen Powell (Everybody Wants Some!!)
The entire cast of Richard Linklater’s spiritual follow-up to “Dazed and Confused” is one riotous bundle of joy (and a cure for the usually cliche portrayal of college kids), but Glen Powell’s Finnegan is by far the standout. The scene that makes his character comes at a party for the “artsy fartsy” crowd when, after encouraging a freewheeling spirit of sex, booze, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll throughout the film, he actually gets for real hurt when his proteges crash his chances with a girl he happens to like. Finnegan is on the cusp of adulthood and leadership heading into one of the most tumultuous decades of American history, but he’s not quite there yet…and it’s the leftover, subtle vulnerabilities of the kid during his last days of youth that make him so unbelievably endearing. If there’s any justice in the world, EWS!! will do for him what Dazed and Confused did for…well, most of the cast.

Tilda Swinton (A Bigger Splash)
The (in my opinion, overblown) controversy over Swinton’s Doctor Strange role sadly overshadowed her performance in this Fellini-esque story of beautiful people behaving in decidedly un-beautiful ways. Playing a major, David Bowie-esque popstar who has gone near-mute from the stress of living in public, Swinton has few lines but somehow manages to steal the show from a simmering Matthias Schoenaerts and a manic Ralph Fiennes. Being mostly robbed of the ability to speak, Swinton has to convey a massive range of emotions largely with body language—a task she accomplishes with all the skill you’d expect from one of the world’s greatest actresses.

Natalie Portman (Jackie)
Frail and tough, honest and veiled, open and censoring—Portman’s portrayal of the most famous First Lady in American history is riddled with contradictions that, in her hands, become a coherent character. She can sink to the depths of unbearable anguish at a moment’s notice, and five minutes later it is as if nothing very bad had happened. Yet, there’s always something boiling under the surface…perhaps an understanding that history will forever place “JFK’s wife” next to her name, whatever else she may do with her life. At times, Portman seems to barely hold it all in, yet when we leave the theater she is still a mystery. Maybe that’s how it should be.

Joel Edgerton (Loving)
Rarely does more go unsaid or understood than passes behind the face of Joel Egderton as Richard Loving, one half of the married couple whose simple wish to live in their home state of Virginia dealt a death blow to laws banning interracial marriage in the United States. Edgerton says little, and when he does it is in as few words as possible…every one of which speaks his entire mind. Key to the performance, though, are scenes of him simply sharing intimate moments with wife Mildred. At a time when the stereotype of the traditonal American husband and father of yesteryear is often held up for all the wrong reasons, Edgerton’s performance is crucial.

Emma Stone (La La Land)
Until near the end, the music is the driving force of La La Land. Then someone asks the character of Mia to “tell a story”, and Emma Stone delivers one of the best scenes of her career. The strength of the “Audition” number redefines what has come before for the character, and solidifies her as both someone we can really root for, and the personification of dreamers, however hopeless they might be. The final look she gives Ryan Reynolds in the film speaks more than a page of dialogue ever could.

Viola Davis (Fences)
Before the era of feminism, there was an unspoken agreement between married couples in the U.S.: a wife was to put up with her husband’s shit, even when he was full to bursting with it. It was hard to pick one of the two main performances in “Fences” to single out, but ultimately Davis’s simmering cauldron is the heart of the story, enabling her to both survive and love life with her deeply, deeply flawed husband. Unlike Denzel Washington, who gets to vomit forth an endless stream of anger throughout the film, Davis is tasked with saving her one great outburst for when it is most needed and has the most impact, creating a scene the trailers should not have featured; it should have been allowed to burst on audiences like water from a broken dam, rolling over everything in its path. Five minutes later, she’s calm again, but she’s also a different woman…or maybe just another woman who was hiding behind the first all along.

Sunny Pawar (Lion)
The trailers all emphasize the adult Saroo’s search for his home, but the bulk of the movie is taken up with a young Saroo getting lost in the first place, and Dev Patel is overshadowed by 8-year-old Sunny Pawar…not an easy feat. Like Quvenzhane Wallis and Jacob Tremblay, Pawar takes a role that could easily have been phoned in (since we have natural sympathy for kids) and makes little Saroo into an enormously relatable character, a lost boy whose stomping ground is no Neverland. It isn’t any wonder the filmmakers keep coming back to him in flashbacks after his character is grown. He’s the heart of the film.

Hailee Steinfeld (Edge of Seventeen)
I swear, my generation moons over the era of John Hughes High School comedies so much they seem to forget that being awkward, out-of-place and unable to wait for the day after graduation day isn’t unique to them. Every year we get a handful of largely unheralded comedies about that very topic, and Hailee Steinfeld’s performance as a morbid, confused and, yes, aggressive (bad female! bad!) teen who openly discusses her sex life, alcohol habits and dark, dark, dark humor elevates “Edge of Seventeen” to the top of the pack. With acerbic wit, pinpoint aim, and unflinching pessimism, Nadine Franklin manages to skewer not just every aspect of High School life but many of life in general. The only target she routinely misses? Herself.

Kate Beckinsale (Love & Friendship)
It is exceedingly rare that a woman in the movies can be aggressive and acidic at the same time. Kate Beckinsale’s Lady Susan is such a character. It is impossible for all but the most ardent feminists to actually like her, and you’d never want to be drawn into her poisonous circle of rumor, manipulation, innuendo and life-destroying gossip, but you have to admire her for taking charge of her own life at a time when women were tasked with hosting guests, looking pretty and shutting up. These days, she’d almost certainly be described as a sociopath, wrecking lives for her whim and amusement, yet you can’t look away. She’s the year’s best villain…or is she?

Ben Foster (Hell or High Water)
Chris Pine’s well-meaning father is our anchor to this story of two desperate brothers in hard times, but Ben Foster is the anarchic, destructive force that keeps our eyes glued to the screen. Whereas Pine’s dad doesn’t think of himself as criminal and Jeff Bridges’s sheriff has spent far too much time watching old westerns, Foster knows exactly what he is: a violent criminal whose psycopathy he might be able to turn to his brother’s aid in one last blaze of glory. There’s never really a question of him surviving the story; he’s not a man, he’s a storm, and he’s here to rage harder than he ever has before blowing himself out.

Naomie Harris (Moonlight)
Talk about embodying multiple people in one role. Harris plays mother to a young, gay black man at three different stages of his life, but she’s not the kind of perfect mom the movies prefer. She’s a drug addict at a time when the War on Drugs refused to treat such people with any sort of humanity, and she’s got a temper to match the times; when she screams hurtful words at her own son, the decision to remove the audio from the scene makes her come off as near-demonic. Simplicity, though, isn’t really what Moonlight deals in, and there are layers and regrets to her revealed as the film goes on. Her final scene asks a rather important question: should any time be too late to be forgiven?

Anya Taylor-Joy (The Witch)
For the most part, horror will forever be considered beneath the notice of those who hand out accolades, which means even if you turn in one of the most startling performances of the year, it doesn’t really count if it’s in this genre. That’s a shame, because unless you count a tiny, uncredited role from 2014, Taylor-Joy makes the most impressive film debut of any actress this year. Called upon to do things involving animal blood and demonic possession that a more image-concerned person might spurn, she handles the role of a teenage girl whose family is being assailed by the forces of hell by taking it all absolutely seriously, which is essential; any hint that she thinks anything she’s doing is silly, and the film falls apart. There’s reason to question whether anything supernatural is really happening in the New England wilderness of the late 1600’s, but no reason to doubt the strength of Taylor-Joy’s performance.

Ryan Reynolds (Deadpool)
Not everything has to be so serious, something Deadpool would probably remind you of right before delivering a kick straight to your kibbles and bits. As the star, producer and driving force behind the hilariously raunchy R-rated superhero flick, Reynolds is the most eminently watchable and entertaining a comic hero has been outside the suit since Robert Downey Jr. swaggered into the Iron Man armor. Mel Brooks once famously described his films as rising below vulgarity, and whether Reynolds is taking time out to break the fourth wall or making incredibly lewd comments at his blind, elderly, female roommate, he’s bringing the spirit of “Blazing Saddles” to a genre that sometimes really needs to get over itself. In a year where “Batman vs. Superman” took itself more seriously than a second heart attack, Reynolds’s Merc with a Mouth is the filthy, over-the-top cure the doctor ordered.

And my top two performances, starting with my choice for Best Actress:

Isabelle Huppert (Elle)

In arguably the most challenging role this year, which comes in certainly the most challenging film, Huppert plays a woman who, after being raped, plays a cat-and-mouse game with the rapist. Whether she is trying to catch him or get caught again is another question. The role was turned down by multiple more well-known actresses, before being taken by Huppert, who deserves to be more well-known outside her native France. Key to her performance is that her character is not altogether very likable, and if she were not a victim of a heinous crime, you’d have a real difficult time feeling empathy for her. That takes far more guts, I think, than playing out brutal scenes of assault, since we tend to demand our heroines be pure as the driven snow.

Casey Affleck (Manchester by the Sea)

He’s been turning in the best work he possibly can in every role he’s had, big or small, for two decades, always overshadowed in fame by his older brother, but this year is Casey’s. Angry, violent, adrift and bereft, Lee Chandler is a man with no purpose in a world that demands every man have one, not that he grasps himself on that level: he’s simply a man who has been struck over and over until nothing but armor remains. Forced to deal with the issue of custody for his nephew after his brother dies, he portrays a truth no man wants to face: not all of us are cut out for responsibility. Despite this, Affleck walks a fine line, making Lee simultaneously a jerk and someone you’d really like to see come out on top. Unfortunately, as Lee well knows, the world just isn’t that simple.

Honorable mentions: I limited my list to 15, and even after expanding from ten it was still difficult. There are lots of great roles that didn’t make the cut, and here are the ten that really gave the winners a run for their money, in one big list. If you don’t see your favorite, remember: it doesn’t necessarily mean they weren’t good, just that I can’t possibly list them all.

Kristen Stewart (Cafe Society)
The Cast of Don’t Think Twice
Royalty Hightower (The Fits)
Meryl Streep (Florence Foster Jenkins)
Lou de Laage (The Innocents)
Ruth Negga (Loving)
Lucas Hedges (Manchester by the Sea)
Jessica Chastain (Miss Sloane)
Pretty much everybody in Moonlight (Moonlight)
Katie Holmes (Touched With Fire)

sohmamon  asked:

I'd love to hear opinions for Megamorphs 4

Short opinion: I giggle every time I read the line “President Clinton urged everyone to remain calm” but seriously this book is so scary specifically because it feels so realistic to canon.

Long opinion:

I’ve always felt like this book takes place in direct conversation with #1, fleshing out the existing personalities and relationships of the team as of the moment that they walk through the construction site.  The actual first book in the series sweeps the characters along so quickly toward their destiny (by necessity, because anything else would be bad writing) that we get extremely few details about what these kids are actually like before the war ruins their lives except in the retrospective.  Back to Before feels like a chance to go back and find out who exactly these kids were before they all became homicidal cinnamon rolls.  Of course I’m a sucker for the details about Tom (He has a driver’s license!  He wears a denim jacket over blue jeans like a true 90s fashion victim!  Temrash 114 keeps at least two separate dracon beams in his room!  His parents think he should pay more attention in school!) but there are also a ton of rich characterization moments for all six Animorphs.  

This book really shows us for the first time why Tobias is so desperate for his life to change that he throws himself into a war (and maybe-maybenot gets himself trapped in morph) just to have friends and a purpose.  He belongs nowhere—not at home with his alcoholic uncle, not at school where he’s constantly under threat of physical violence, not at the mall where Jake listens to him out of pity while Marco’s openly hostile—which means that he grabs the first chance he can to fly away from it all.  Maybe he’s being short-sighted, since by #3 he already knows he had no idea what he was getting himself into, but he’s so desperate to get out that one can hardly blame him even when he resorts to becoming a controller in order to have someone to talk to and something to give him meaning.  

It’s also striking that Tobias is the one who ends up recruited by the Sharing, while Jake attends one meeting and leaves.  Most of the series has this implicit assumption that if any of them will be the first one taken, it’ll be Jake, since he’s the one with a controller already living in the house.  (For instance, #41 and #7 both feature variations on the theme of everyone getting caught because Tom saw something he shouldn’t, and in #49 everyone is shocked when the yeerks’ DNA match isn’t between Jake and Tom.)  However, here Jake sees everything the Sharing has to offer… and tells Tom “I’m not really a joiner,” because he’s really really not (MM4).  The unfortunate flip side of the coin of Jake’s leadership ability is that he makes a fairly terrible follower.  In this book it saves his life, but there are other instances (when dealing with the andalites in #18 and #38, during the negotiations with the Arn in #34) where everyone would probably be better off if Jake could find it in himself to sit down, shut up, and do as he’s told.  Non-Animorph Jake is probably at risk of becoming a useless washout (between the crappy academic performance, the mediocre athletic performance, and the lack of motivation to do anything, he’s probably destined to spend the rest of his life as a failed artist living in a studio apartment in downtown LA paid for by his parents’ money), but he’s also not at risk of becoming a voluntary controller, because he’s perfectly content with his mediocre life.  

Rachel, by contrast, is incredibly restless in her normal life.  Cassie describes her as “hunting” with “laser focus” when looking for bargains at the mall (MM4).  It takes her about ten seconds to get on board with chasing down and attempting to tackle some random stranger because Marco thinks said stranger looks like his dead mom.  She snaps into action the second that Ax broadcasts the news that aliens are attacking the planet, and keeps fighting with whatever tools come to hand (including a severed hork-bajir head, because this girl is hardcore) until she gets killed.  For all that she loves it, this book implies that the war might be the worst thing that could have possibly happened to Rachel.  After all, she’s quite good at channeling all that pent-up aggression into verbal sparring the way her mom does (notice how much she enjoys arguing with Marco in the planetarium) and also releasing that extra energy through athletics the way her dad does (unlike Jake, she’s not deterred in her sports ambitions by a mere hiccup like utter lack of talent).  She also has a lot of friends and admirers, a track record of being one of the highest performers in her class, and a casual self-confidence that is rare enough for a girl her age to win her a lot of favors with a lot of people.  Non-Animorph Rachel (in a world that also had no yeerks) would probably thrive in whatever career she chose for decades before dying at a ripe old age surrounded by her highly attractive husband and seven fat grandchildren.  

Maybe my favorite piece of Marco characterization from this book is the way it establishes there is actually a lot more to his crush on Rachel than thinking she has beautiful hair and looks cute in a leotard.  He’s considerably less comfortable in his own skin than either of the Berensons, but he also practices what he preaches by appreciating a joke at his own expense just as much as one he uses to mock another person.  This book makes it obvious that he looks up to Rachel (not just literally, although Marco’s jokes about his own height are also amazing) because he recognizes how intelligent and ruthless she is, and those are the qualities he values the most in himself and others.  Cates pointed out that it’s interesting almost all of Marco’s role models are female (Xena, Alanis Morissette, Carmen Electra, Eva for that matter) and in a lot of ways he doesn’t just like Rachel; he admires her.  

And then there’s the portrayal of Ax when no one comes to rescue him.  #4 and #8 only hint at what it must have been like for him to spend weeks stuck in a tiny dome at the bottom of the ocean, not knowing whether anyone was coming for him, suspecting more and more every day that his whole crew was dead, but here we get a much deeper look at those long days of solitude.  He comes off almost like a prisoner in solitary confinement in the scenes before he manages to use the shark morph to escape: compulsively addicted to routines, talking to inanimate objects, starting to hallucinate when left alone for long enough… Ax is a survivor, tough enough to live through years of loneliness and grief while fighting a war on a foreign planet.  This book shows just how much of that strength comes from within, fire-forged by his traumatic introduction to Earth.  

Oh, and Cassie is sub-temporally grounded, apparently.  I have nothing nice to say about that concept so I’ll settle for saying nothing at all.

Anyway, I love both the opening and closing of this book.  The first scene has one of those UTTERLY HORRIFYING banality-of-violence beginnings, where we open on the aftermath of a battle that may or may not have accomplished anything other than giving the kids involved a few more nightmares.  Jake is disturbingly casual about the fact that he has lost an entire leg and is slowly bleeding to death, making wry jokes about how he and the three-legged table match each other. We can tell why: this isn’t the first (or even the thirtieth) time he’s been fatally maimed and then forced to shrug it off in order to keep fighting.  The kids try—and fail—to save the host of a fatally injured yeerk a few minutes of pain, and end up watching both beings bleed to death.  And then Jake goes home, and he once again plays the game of Lying For His Life with his parents and Tom, and he goes to bed ready to do it all again the next day, wondering what dreams of Sauron Crayak will come.  This poor schmuck literally never catches a break.  No wonder his little deal with the devil seems so tempting for the millisecond that it takes for Crayak to pounce.  (By contrast, the TV episode features Jake asking the Little Blue Ellimist to make him a Real Boy because he doesn’t want to do his math homework and plan a battle at the same time. What a whiner.)

Ugh, and then the ten little soldiers go out to dine, and they drop off one by one so fast that most barely get the chance to fight back.  Rachel and Ax especially do their best to battle the oncoming horde, but they’re largely unarmed and clueless against the yeerks. Tobias becomes the living puppet of a living puppet of Visser One, and then there were five.  Marco stands a little too close to a Bug fighter, and then there were four.  Rachel runs straight into turret fire because Rachel is still Rachel even without unleashing her inner grizzly bear, and then there were three. Cassie is in the wrong shopping mall at the wrong time, and then there were two.  Jake faces down an army of hork-bajir as just his little human self, and then there was one.  Ax might be able to survive—but he isn’t looking to go home and be safe, he’s looking to save the world.  And then there were none.  

A lot of the point of this book is that of course the Ellimist “stacked the deck,” because these kids in particular are the the only ones who have the necessary combination of idealism and grittiness to take on an entire army and win (MM4).  Marco says it best in #54: “We beat an empire, my friend, the six of us, and we did it in large part because you didn’t know any better than to trust your own instincts.”  Ax has the tech savvy and determination to engage in total war, but he can’t survive on Earth without human friends.  Rachel has the ferocity to be a one-woman army, but without her friends to ground her she’d get herself killed a lot sooner.  Jake might be a natural leader, but he’s also naive enough not to know how to balance ethics in times of atrocity without Marco’s ruthlessness and Cassie’s pragmatism to guide him.  Without Marco, the team would never succeed in taking down Visser One.  Without Cassie, they would never get in contact with the Yeerk Peace Movement.  Without Tobias, they’d never succeed at freeing the hork-bajir.  These six form a constellation of skills and needs and strengths and neuroses that balances the fate of the entire galaxy on the shoulders of a bunch of middle schoolers.  They don’t need morphing power to be badass—but they do need it to win.  

anonymous asked:

(1/2)I love your metas, but I do have a point of contention WRT GC Elthina. From Sebastian's (canonical) short story and personal quest, it seems that she views the young Starkhavener as a sort of adoptive son, and it isn't hard to imagine that she feels the same way about the KC and the GE. Honestly, Elthina has always seemed like a tragic character to me. Watching two people you care about have a falling out is never a good feeling. I can't blame her for not wanting to look into the eyes of...

(2/2)… One of the people she loved and tell them she was siding against them. Both M and O were hardliners, refusing to: give magi the benefit of the doubt; and prioritise the stability of the chantry over the lives of his people; respectively. This was exacerbated by depression (O) and RL use (M), making it impossible for them to find compromise. Her devotion to neutrality didn’t help in the long run, but I can’t bring myself to hate a tired old woman who wanted her kids to get along again.

Hi, Anonymous person. Thank you for the compliment, but … really? I mean this, specifically:

Both M and O were hardliners, refusing to: give magi the benefit of the doubt; and prioritise the stability of the chantry over the lives of his people; respectively. 

Oh, Orsino. Why do you have to be so extreme with the ‘not wanting to die’, or even, let’s be really daring, ‘not wanting to be tortured to the point of committing suicide’? Why can’t you understand that it’s important for the Chantry, with all its wealth, power, political influence and privilege, to retain its iron grip on Thedas? I mean, think if it didn’t. We might have things like religious tolerance and basic rights and free speech, and then where would we be? Can’t you and your helpless mages just suffer quietly so the rich, corrupt and powerful can keep on being rich, corrupt and powerful? Look at it from Meredith’s point of view. All she’s done is illegally take control of one little city-state and spend nearly two decades abusing her power to the detriment of pretty much everyone, but especially the mages, who are dying in droves. Is that really so bad?

Look. In terms of his perseverance, and his courage in the face of terrible abuse and mortal peril, Orsino is fierce and heroic. But politically, the man is a moderate. He’s too moderate for me. I mean, I love him, because I understand how he got to this position, and why it’s hard for him to go further, but this is not a winning strategy.

Me, I’m with Anders and Fiona and Adrian and their ilk. The mages must be free. The Chantry – its wealth, its power, its status, its legal hold over so many lives – must go. Not just for the mages. For everyone.

Orsino isn’t asking for that.

As first enchanter, Orsino worked tirelessly to improve the lot of the mages. He wanted, as much as he could, to make their days in the Gallows worth something. Even if they were still prisoners, and even though it was hard, he wanted to give them hope. More importantly, he wanted to give them something of a life so that death would not be preferable.

World of Thedas, II

He’s not trying to tear down the Circles, or put an end to the Chantry, or anything like that. He wants the mages to be able to walk sometimes in the sun. To not be locked in tiny cells. To be safe from beatings and rape and torture. To not be made Tranquil when they’ve passed their Harrowings. To have meaningful work and leisure. To have a life inside the Circle, while living by Chantry rules.

That’s … not a hardline position. That’s … just a basic standard of living. Meredith is an extremist. The treatment of the mages in Kirkwall is considered remarkable even in other Circles. Even non-mages in Kirkwall have been stirred to sympathy for the mages:

Every Circle in Thedas suffers from individual mages who rebel and attempt to flee. These apostates are usually found and returned to the Circle or mercifully killed if they have fallen to demonic temptation. Until now, I have never served anywhere that the populace does not fully cooperate in hunting these rebels.

Here in Kirkwall, citizens actually help rebel mages escape. Escaped apostates have survived their freedom long enough to form the “the mage underground,” a network that feeds and shelters escapees and even transports apostates into remote areas of the Free Marches and beyond our easy reach.

– The Mage Underground

The mages are hurling themselves from the top of the fucking tower, it’s that bad in there, and people have noticed that something is wrong.

Note that Elthina’s ‘kids’, as you put it, have never got along. Meredith was against Orsino’s election the position of first enchanter. Not because she thought somebody else would be better at the job, but because she didn’t want the mages to have an advocate at all.

First Enchanter Maceron died in 9:28 Dragon without naming a successor. Many were surprised to learn that the Gallows still had a first enchanter; Maceron had spent nearly all of the last decade in his chambers, emerging only rarely. But now he was dead, and the Gallows in need of a new first enchanter. Knight-Commander Meredith was of the opinion that there was no need for one. After all, the Gallows ran perfectly under the Templars, without interference from Maceron. But Orsino realised that the mages needed someone to speak on their behalf, lest the Templars rob them of what few liberties they still had.

World of Thedas II

It seems she ultimately let it slide because she didn’t really believe he could accomplish anything. As far as I can tell, all he’s managed to do is slow her down a bit. The mages are being tortured to death, and are due for total liquidation in the very near future. But even that is too much for Meredith. The Templars regard Orsino as ‘a menace’ simply for winning his people a few small liberties – liberties of which, by Act 3, they seem to have again been stripped.

Elthina doesn’t give a shit about Orsino or the mages. You know how I know this? Because past a certain point, inaction is in itself a declaration of support. If you’ve got two friends, and they’re arguing about who gets to drink the last beer in the fridge, you can say ‘I’m just going to stay neutral, and let you two sort it out’. But if one of your friends picks up a rock and bashes the other’s skull in, then disposes of the corpse to obscure the evidence and makes up a story about how your now-dead friend was a dangerous criminal and had to be killed, and is awarded medals and accolades for it … and you stand there and watch, and say nothing, and do nothing, then you have sided with the murderer. You are protecting them, and keeping their secrets, and doing nothing to either help or get justice for the victim.

The thing is, Meredith doesn’t need Elthina to side with her. She is not in need of help. She is the de facto Viscount of Kirkwall. She is Knight-Commander of the Kirkwall Templars. She’s not only been brutalising the mages, but attacking the citizens of Kirkwall as well. She can, and does, do whatever the fuck she wants. Elthina standing in the middle of the street and yelling ‘Meredith is right about everything!’ wouldn’t actually change the situation much.

Orsino does need Elthina. He’s not some willful child who just can’t get along with his sister. He is a desperate man struggling to protect people who effectively have no legal rights from a woman who enjoys watching them suffer. He needs Elthina to face down Meredith. He needs her to write to the Divine to plead for their lives. He needs Meredith removed from power. He needs protection and care for his people. He needs these things, not as some ‘hardline’ anti-Chantry position, but just to live.

Elthina does not care about him or his people.

Now – she might care about Meredith. I’m fairly convinced she only cares about people insofar as she can use them (Sebastian included – Elthina has a prince in her direct service, remember), but she has been able to use Meredith, so she might care about her. That’s … not really a point in her favour, though.

Let’s backtrack a bit here, shall we? This is tricky, because we’ve mostly got Chantry sources to work with, and they don’t come right out and say what they’ve done. But the criminal partnership of Grand Cleric Elthina and Meredith Stannard is a long one.

Records indicate that Elthina was born in a small village nestled in the Vimmark Mountains just south of Kirkwall. When she was just a little girl, both her parents contracted a terrible fever that took them both. Elthina never caught the illness, thanks to a kindly neighbour who cared for her while her parents were sick. When her parents died, the neighbour’s husband refused to continue paying for the upkeep of the orphan child, and Elthina was given to the Chantry. She became a lay sister as a girl and, when she came of age, was given the choice to leave the Chantry or take an initiate’s vows. Elthina chose to stay. When she was twenty, she moved south, to Kirkwall, and became a revered mother at the chantry there.

World of Thedas II

That’s Elthina’s backstory. Note that she came from nothing: an orphan and a pauper. And yet her rise is incredible. By twenty she is revered mother of one of the largest cities in the Free Marches. Note that ‘revered’ means she’s actually responsible for the Kirkwall chantry, not just holding the rank of ‘mother’ like Petrice. This is a woman of drive and ambition. These are not bad things in themselves, of course. But they are noteworthy things. They demonstrate that Elthina is not weak willed or retiring by nature. She’s clawing her way up the Chantry hierarchy as quickly as she’s able.

Now, unfortunately, the way the Chantry works puts a bit of a roadblock in her career there. No further to climb until the boss kicks the bucket. And so the next point of interest …

Following the death of her predecessor, Elthina was appointed grand cleric of the Free Marches by Divine Beatrix III.

World of Thedas II

Not surprising, perhaps, but noteworthy still, because it reminds us where Elthina owes her favours. Now we get to the meat of it.

In 9:21 dragon, Divine Beatrix commanded that the Kirkwall Templars force the Viscount to allow Orlesian ships through the Waking Sea passage. Knight-Commander Guylian was against it.

It is not our place to interfere in political affairs. We are here to safeguard the city against magic, not against itself.

– History of Kirkwall: Chapter 4

However, there was a certain knight-captain who was not so scrupulous, and who was poised to take command of the Templars:

When Guylian gave a command, it was Meredith who enforced it. Her drive and her devotion to her duty made her a bit of a legend among her fellow Templars, and privately, many thought she possessed a hundred times the old knight-commander’s charisma. Many said that it was Meredith who was really the leader of the Templars, despite her junior rank.

World of Thedas II

The official story is that Viscount Perrin Threnhold hired mercenaries, who stormed the Gallows and publicly hanged Guylian.

Maybe he did. But. It’s a bit convenient, isn’t it? A man who did not want to fight the Viscount was abruptly replaced by a woman who absolutely did want to fight the Viscount. And he wasn’t just replaced. These mercenaries didn’t do anything sensible, like capture and hold the Gallows, or get hold of all of the Templars’ top officers, or gain control of the lyrium supply – you know, stuff you might do if you were actually trying to beat the Templars. No, they lynched the knight-commander, right out in public, and apparently left every other Templar free to retaliate. Now that they had the justification to do whatever they wanted.

Note that the mercenaries disappear from the story at this point. We don’t know who they were or what happened to them.

Interesting, isn’t it, that a Grand Cleric appointed by Beatrix resides in Kirkwall? Orders for the region would naturally filter through her. Likewise, the Knight-Commander would have first brought his protests to her.

In any case, the Templars stormed the Viscount’s Keep and Perrin Threnhold was arrested.

He was tried and imprisoned three days later by Grand Cleric Elthina and died from poisoning two years later.

– Knight-Commander Meredith

Three days? That’s quick, for deposing the ruler of a city. And with what, exactly, was he charged? This all happened because he opposed the Orlesian empire, and because the Templars were themselves going to war with the Viscount. We don’t know. We only know that Grand Cleric Elthina personally had him imprisoned. Then he died.

Also convenient, isn’t it, that he died mysteriously? Who would have motive to keep him from talking? Or, who might be concerned that he might be able to retake power? How about the people now ruling the city?

Because that’s what happened.

Following Threnhold’s arrest, Grand Cleric Elthina appointed Meredith as the new knight-Commander. At Knight-Commander Meredith’s strong suggestion, a new viscount was chosen: a man named Marlowe Dumar.

World of Thedas II

Meredith’s service to the Grand Cleric, the Divine and the Orlesian empire was rewarded. She was given the top job in the Templars. The Chantry effectively had control of the city. Meredith cemented that control by finding them a convenient puppet.

Look at who has benefited from this scenario. The Kirkwall chantry is wealthy and influential. Its large Templar presence ensures it is able to maintain its hold on the city.

Elthina has gained quite the reputation for ‘managing’ the Templars:

People frequently turn to her to mediate disputes—particularly those involving the powerful Templar Order, over whom she holds authority as the Chantry’s ranking representative.

– Grand Cleric Elthina

That sounds nice, until you remember that she appointed Meredith to her role, and that the Templars are ruling the city. There shouldn’t really be disputes with the Templar Order. They are empowered (however little I may like it) to take mages to the Circle, and to hunt apostates. They should not be interfering with the general populace at all. Of course they are. Meredith was selected precisely because she was willing to interfere, and she has kept on doing so. Elthina’s reputation is thus one long con. She has been smoothing over those occasions when her knight-commander (and partner in crime) stepped on a few too many noble toes.

And Meredith?

For now, she enjoys the grand cleric’s full support and has free rein in Kirkwall as the commander of its most powerful military force.

– Knight-Commander Meredith

Meredith has, all these years, enjoyed Elthina’s full support. Not just in her role as the boss of the Kirkwall Circle, but as Kirkwall’s military leader. Elthina has backed Meredith every step of the way, since she took control of Kirkwall.

That’s an almost pre-red lyrium Codex entry, from the very first time you meet Meredith. Elthina is worried now, because Meredith’s behaviour is becoming erratic. But prior to this, they have enjoyed a long and fruitful partnership. Whether Elthina cares about Meredith as a person is up for debate (she might!) but she certainly cares that Meredith is no longer doing her job as well as she once did.

So I’m sorry, but I don’t believe in sweet Grandma Elthina. Probably that was the writers’ intent, but either they wrote her very badly as a sweet old lady, or there’s some epic subversion going on here. Nothing I have seen in these games, or their Codices, or the supplementary material, has given me any reason to see Elthina as anything other than a manipulative, terrible person, who only works for her own advancement.

I don’t think of her as tragic, and I don’t mourn her death. She’s part of the problem. A bloody big part, at that.

Bonding - Chris and Zig Fanfic

Hello folks. Here is my entry for the Choices Creates carnival Round 7. The prompt is “KITCHEN.” 

It’s been a while since I wrote anything or shared what I wrote, so this is a bit anxiety producing for me. But, it’s time.

There really isn’t a pairing here. This is basically about Chris and Zig having a little heart to heart from Chris’ POV. There is also some implied Zig x MC toward the end, but nothing super dramatic.

This fic is rated T. And I think that’s about all the set up you need. So, here goes nothing!

Chris stared down at the array of peppers before him and swallowed hard. He tried to remind himself of where he was. He knew this kitchen well. He and his suitemates had many late night snack binges here. They’d had their first college party in this space. It was the heart of their little home. But in that moment, it felt like the least safe place he could possibly be.

Zig had handed him a knife and he was at a loss for what to do with it. He felt like he was on a reality television show, where he’d get yelled at and kicked out of he did this wrong. So he tried to buy himself some time to think. After a moment of turning one pepper, laying it on its side, and then standing it up and gazing at it from several angles, Zig interrupted his stalling by clearing his throat.

“Hey, Chris…you know you don’t have to examine the peppers before you chop them, right?”

Chris eyed Zig sheepishly, standing upright. He knew the comment was meant to be teasing but he really was stressed out about it. “Are you sure you want me as your sous chef? I’m pretty bad at this.”

Zig regarded him silently before joining him at the counter.  “Give it to me straight. You’ve never cut a bell pepper before, have you?”

Chris paused, briefly considering stretching the truth a little so he wouldn’t look as stupid as he felt. But, eventually he sighed in defeat as he shook his head and Zig nodded, chuckling.

“No worries…all you had to do was say so. There’s a process to it but it’s pretty simple. Here, watch this.” He took the knife and a pepper, and demonstrated by first cutting the top off the pepper. Then he reached inside and pulled the core and seeds out. He placed the pepper top down and sliced it in half and then began to cut each half into long slices. Then he lined up all the slices and cut those into smaller pieces. Before long, he had a pile of nearly identical tiny bell pepper squares. Once he finished, he placed the knife back down on the counter and wiped off his hands.

“Voila! Diced bell pepper.”

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I wanted to take a second to talk about Zack and Melissa as complimentary opposites in their ways of perceiving and supporting Milo. Melissa is very cerebral, very in-tune with the concrete details surrounding Milo and his situation–in fact, her close observance has taken her to a point where she can often predict Murphy’s Law more accurately than he can. (“No, Milo, don’t tap. Remember what happened last time?”) She’s responsive to his basic needs; she makes sure he has his lunch, gives him the benefit of her company when he might otherwise be alone (“Not-Football Friday”), uses her understanding of his condition to help him out and channels her resources into his arsenal. Otherwise, she doesn’t seem to worry about him much; she’s aware of his strength as an individual and sees to it that others are aware of it as well: “Milo’s tough.”

Zack is far more emotional in his approach, far more aware of Milo as a social being than as an independent entity. He’s strongly conscious of Milo’s need for friendship; he notices Milo’s crush on a classmate and teases him about it; he not only strives to support him by staying by his side and experiencing danger with him, but does what he can to keep Milo connected to the world outside their small group despite the difficulties inherent in doing so. Without ever calling Milo into doubt, he subtly questions–through his actions if not his words–whether their friend is as tough as he appears.

This is laid out beautifully in the very first episode. Zack, we know, is a cautious kid–in fact, his safety-first approach is one of his defining character traits, to the point where its negation causes his friends to feel that they’ve lost Zack himself–but when he sees the gang at the bus stop giving Milo a wide berth, he doesn’t even consider hanging back until he’s aware of the details. He does attempt to figure out what the problem is, but it’s clearly more important to him to be friendly to the guy everyone is avoiding and to make him feel at ease; when the others beg him not to shake Milo’s hand, he ignores them and sticks to asking Milo himself what’s going on. In our first moment with Melissa, the longterm friend of Milo, we see her taking the opposite tack: she senses the concrete drainage pipe coming a mile away and choses to keep her distance (“Good call!” says Milo without a hint of resentment). But not being directly caught up in the ensuing cycle of escapades enables her to provide for her friend; noticing that the first calamity of the morning deprived him of his lunch, she puts her understanding of Murphy’s Law to work on his behalf. Throughout the episode, Zack becomes increasingly overwhelmed by the disasters that sprout up in Milo’s path, at one point briefly deciding that he’s out of his depth and has to get away for his own sake. But even then, he can’t leave without asking a personal question: “How do you live like this?” The logistics of how Milo navigates his life are already clear to Zack, and to the viewer, by this time; long experience has caused him to adapt himself to his unique situation, so that he’s always well-prepared for anything that could go wrong and has armed himself with everything he needs to survive. What Zack is asking about is the emotional end, the inconvenience, the frustration, and Milo responds to him accordingly: he embraces his circumstance as an adventure, one more exciting than the dull routine of riding a bus to school. Zack, won over, proves his loyalty and his value as a friend by sticking with Milo and riding out the storm until they finally make it to their destination. Melissa likewise proves her worth, but in a more practical way; by betting the skeptics on the bus that Milo will make it to school on time, she manages to replace his missing lunch several times over. From the first moment of their meeting, Zack sees Milo as someone who could use a friend and manages to be that friend under far more trying circumstances than he anticipated; Melissa takes Milo’s independence and resilience for granted, but nonetheless takes stock of what he needs and quietly provides it.

We’ve already seen that these different approaches can put them at odds with each other; when Milo gets the chance to attend Zack’s football game, Zack begs him to take it, unbothered by the damage his presence could incur, while Melissa’s past experience with Murphy’s Law makes her hesitant to the point where she tries to talk him out of going, even though he’s dying to get out and do the wave. But “Party of Peril” gave us a stunning example of what these two can accomplish when they put their heads together. Melissa doesn’t seem overly troubled about the fact that Milo hasn’t had a proper birthday party in years; she can understand why it’s hardly practical given what happened last time, and she unfailingly spends time with Milo on his birthday herself. It takes Zack, an outsider, to look at this situation and point out the obvious emotional side of it: “That’s sad. Doesn’t he miss having a big birthday party?” It takes Zack to suggest having a party for Milo anyway: a big one, with everyone they can invite. (I like to think that he noticed how much fun Milo had with the crowd at the football game and how happy he was when the team and the cheer squad turned up in his hospital room; it’s clear that he knows how much it means to Milo to have the support of as many people as possible.) This isn’t an idea Melissa would have likely had on her own, but once Zack gets the ball rolling, she makes it happen. She uses her knowledge of their classmates and her powers of manipulation to secure the ideal party planner for an event that will definitely prove chaotic; she uses her friendship with Milo and her understanding of what will move him (fake sprained wrist!) to get him out of the way while they set up and to guide him toward the go-kart track; she puts vigilante “Safety Czar” Elliot Decker on his tail to hold him up still further. She does a whole series of distinctly Chaseian things that Zack could never manage on his own, but that turn his idea into a reality.

This is the most obvious example, but we’ve seen this dynamic help Milo on a number of subtler levels: at the opera Zack rushes backstage, needing to be present in person to help Milo deal with the resultant mayhem, while Melissa stays safely in her seat and keeps Amanda from losing her mind–a less-obvious way of helping Milo, but a very necessary one. Milo has been friends with Melissa for years, but the addition of Zack to the team introduces a new factor which, working in combination with the skills Melissa already has (it took her to figure out that Milo could influence the outcome of the game and to help him use that power to their advantage, making him an unlikely hero for their team–but without Zack she might have kept Milo at home and they might never have attended the game in the first place), has given Milo what might already be the most successful school year of his life to date–and at the time of writing, we’re only a month into the show. 

Bottom line: Melissa is Milo’s backpack, arming him to face life with Murphy’s Law and giving him everything he needs to succeed independently. Zack is Diogee, knowing him as a Milo first and a Murphy second and following him doggedly into every danger even when he’s not supposed to be there. 

raspbarry-allen-deactivated2017  asked:

Hello! I love your Flash metas, very interesting reads. I have a theory myself. I believe that speedsters don't need the usual 8 hours of sleep since their brains would move quicker through the sleep cycle since everything in their bodies move quicker anyway. I'd guess they'd need around 5-4 hours of sleep. What do you think? Also, do you have any ideas or such about how Caitlin has been recently? (Unless if you haven't watched the latest episodes..) Thanks!

First off: thank you!  I’m glad you enjoy them; I love writing them.

Second: I love speedster theory, and yours captures the heart of why it’s so fun!  There is no single answer; there are multiple working hypotheses.  Speedsters might need less sleep because their bodies can perform the requisite sleep-maintenance in less time, or they might need more sleep because they process more information in a given twenty-four-hour period than an ordinary human being.  (Sleep is, after all, a period where we process the information that we learn during the day; speedsters may live the equivalent of a year in a single twenty-four hour period, depending on how much they slow down time).  Or, because there is a magical component to the Speed Force, they may not need to sleep at all, a scenario where Speed Force takes care of the physical and mental maintenance while conscious.

Canonically, we can rule out the last option: we’ve seen Barry snoozing past the alarm.  (However, we can’t rule out insomnia, so “no sleep” may apply on a day-to-day scale, with the occasional weekly intermission).  Whether he needs more or less sleep is hard to judge strictly canonically because we don’t know when Flash finally goes off the clock.  He might get six-to-eight hours; he might get three-to-four.  He might be the ultimate power napper, snagging a few minutes here and there throughout the ‘day.’  (Giraffes, after all, only sleep for about an hour in a twenty-four hour period, usually by sleeping a few minutes a time.  Thus, it’s proven that an animal can survive on very, very little sleep.)

I’ve developed a “restless speedster” hypothesis which would jive well with your “less sleep” hypothesis.  My theory is that speedsters are restless because they have a skewed “internal clock” (circadian rhythm).  Circadian rhythms are sunlight dependent; they dictate when chemicals are released to induce sleep or wakefulness.  During the day, we’re biologically programmed to be awake; at night, we’re biologically programmed to be asleep.  However, what constitutes a day to a speedster when you can fit whole years into a twenty-four hour span?

It’s important to realize that to a speedster, everything happens in real time.  What we see as a blur of instantaneous action is, to a speedster, “real time.”  They don’t speed up; the rest of the world slows down.  It’s rather tedious, when you think about it: for every task Barry does, he performs it at the same pace you or I would.  The only difference is that he can bring the rest of the world to a near standstill, causing it to move so glacially that it appears to come to a halt.  That’s how he accomplishes his work.  The faster he goes, the slower the rest of the world moves, and so the more work he can achieve in a “shorter” interval.  

For Barry or any speedster, five hours of work will always be five hours of work, but to the rest of the world, it may be accomplished in five minutes, five seconds, or five hundredths-of-a-second, all depending on how fast the speedster goes.  Therefore, accomplishing a year’s work in a single twenty-four hour period is still a year of time passing for the speedster while the rest of the world moves so slowly that across that Speed year, it only moves a single day.  Thus, one Earth day would pass in 365 Speed days.

The daylight portion of the twenty-four-hour interval would last approximately 182.5 Speed days, and the night portion would be a chilling 182.5 Speed days.  Imagine spending an entire year utterly alone, and when you finally slow down, your loved ones and everything else around you has only aged a day.

I’ve been meaning to explore this dangerous side of Speed Force for a while – the type where you can become trapped in “slow motion,” where the rest of the world won’t move, even though the reality is that you’re moving so quickly it can’t catch up.  It’ll definitely be ficced by 2017.

Coming back to our conversation here, all of that time – 365 Speed days – would mean that instead of a circadian rhythm of 12 hours (clarification: a day-cycle of 12 hours, a night-cycle of 12 hours, so a 24-hour cycle), your circadian rhythm would have to stretch to 182.5 days, or 4380 hours.  Imagine insomnia that lasts half a year.

So even when a speedster “catches up” to Earth time and syncs up, there’s the concern that a speedster would literally have gone insane from lack of sleep in that interval.  The obvious solution: don’t ever get caught up in that cycle.  Don’t run too fast, don’t run too long.  Even stretching a single day to last the equivalent of four or five, a week, a month, could be torturous.  Speedsters can’t sleep while they’re running; so, a day that lasts a month is a month without sleep.

It’s a fascinating discussion and it’s what’s led to my idea that speedsters are frequently at odds with sleep, only catching it when their circadian rhythm is restored (or they’re grievously injured, in which case it’s less “sleep” than “unconsciousness”).  Thus: insomniacs.  But speedsters who don’t move too fast, who stay within the realm of a twenty-four-hour day, are fine.  Speeding up here and there only adds a few more minutes, maybe hours, to the day.  It depends on how long you run, in addition to how fast.  Running supersonically for seconds may only add a few minutes in that interval.   Even adding on the equivalent of an extra day – forty-eight hours lived in a twenty-four-hour interval – is no different than a college kid staying up for two days.  It’ll suck, but you’ll live.

But, in terms of bodily processes, I’d say your hypothesis is absolutely plausible.  And with the magic component of Speed Force, it’s equally possible that it has its own circadian rhythm, preventing insanity from ensuing after, say, 182.5 Speed days without sleep.

Re: Caitlin, I’d say she’s been pretty stressed lately and the isolation from her friends (aka her second family) has been exacerbating that stress.  I’m genuinely hoping she gets a break soon and finds peace with STAR labs (and especially Cisco and Barry) before this whole metahuman transition eats her alive.  I don’t think she’ll ever become truly evil, but it could be a rough road for her.  We’ll just have to wait and see!

Thanks for asking!

so I watched the ep where Jess tells Rory he loves her last night

and what stunned me more than anything was the incredible… insight we get into Jess’ character that episode. lbr, more so than the entire season where he lived in Stars Hollow.

first of all: Jess returns to Stars Hollow for his car. He clearly isn’t with his father anymore and is sensible enough to know that, if he has a car, he has a roof over his head. It gives him some stability. It shows just how fiercely independent Jess is (a recurring theme this episode).

(tldr; Jess Mariano is a complex character who seeks emotional and physical independence due to the turmoil in his childhood caused by shitty parents, and everyone treats him like an asshole for it, and they shouldn’t because that boy is my cinnamon roll and I will fight anyone who says otherwise)

[[rest under the cut bc I went into full on rant mode and I’m not even sorry]]

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College #1

A/N: College series #1 oneshot, as promised. I know a big apartment for a student is practically non-existent, but I needed it for his roommates. And I figured Percy 24 hours in campus would be just asking for trouble. So give this author a little creative license.

College #1

Sally smiled tearfully at Percy. He laughed at all the drama she was making, fixing the strap of his backpack on his shoulder, getting the key from his pocket and turning it on the lock. He pushed the door open and turned to Paul, accepting the cardboard box he handed out, walking inside the apartment.

It wasn’t very big or spacious, it was roughly the size of their own apartment, but for a college student, it was a mansion. The living room was connected to the kitchen, making the two look bigger than they were, a hallway led to four doors, plus a bathroom.

“Cool, mom.”

“You’ll have to get roommates, of course, but I think it won’t be too hard. It’s not too far from campus, and it’s a good building.”

"Yeah, okay.” he dropped the box on the floor in front of one of the doors.

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The Consequence of Mercy

Back again I am and this time, a very special submission. This is for the amazing mun for @askmercyseries - of which if you haven’t had the opportunity to stumble upon, I highly encourage it. You will not be disappointed not only because the art can be downright breathtaking, but because the mun themselves is a very kind and encouraging person. Some of the most heartwarming posts they have are the ones they direct to the readers.

I’d been wanting to write a tale for this series since I found it and finally, an idea hit me. So for the past two days, I’ve been pouring everything I got into composing this. I hope nothing feels too rushed or there isn’t too many errors, but I figured, with the mun feeling not too well today, that it was the best time to get this out.

I just hope, with the many smiles they have helped to give me after some rough days of my own, with this I might be able to give them one as well. Stay determined, mun!

P.S. Notes at the bottom for anything non-canon to AskMercy that I had to include to tie some plot points together.

Summary: When the grand opening for Sci-Tech, the very first human-monster collaboration project, commences, Frisk finds herself an attendee. However, when the Anti-Monster faction steps in to ruin the ceremony, Frisk finds that she’ll have to think fast if she wants her family, and all of monsterkind, to stay alive.

Rating: T

Warnings: Some strong language and there are parts that get a little gory/body-horroresque

A03 Link: http://archiveofourown.org/works/6350233

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Nothing in between, Part 3

Pairings: Bucky x Reader

Words: 2K

Warnings: Mentions of blood and pain

Part 1
Part 2
Part 4
Part 5

“Bring him here”, I shouted, running towards the tents of medical treatment. 


Soldiers were falling in hard pace at the field, but we didn’t quit. I rushed to the closest one of the bunks, motioning the men to carry the soldier to me. There were always blood everywhere, but the worst thing was the pain and fear that filled each soldier’s eyes as they realized that they weren’t going to make it. But chiefly they did, at least if it depended on me or my cohort. Most nurses gave up if the damage seemed bad enough, but not us. We never did.

I took the soldier’s hand in mine and watched straight into his watering, green eyes. 

“Hey, look at me”, I whispered, smiling softly. “My name is Y/N, what’s yours?”

“Sergeant-”, he coughed, pressing his eyes shut from the pain. “John Winston.”

“John”, I called out and he opened his eyes, focusing his sight on me. “You are going to be all right, you hear me?”

He nodded his head, hue of smile and relief in his eyes.

I let go of his hand to find out the source of the blood. I had to bit my lip to stop myself from gasping, as I saw various, deep cuts on his stomach and legs. 

“Grenade?” I questioned and he nodded his head weakly. “Well, it doesn’t look too bad not to be fixed,” I let out a laughter, gulping thickly, “but I’m going to be honest with you-”

John took a deep breath, nodding his head.

“This is going to hurt. It seems that there are pieces of the grenade inside of your cuts, and I have to remove them to make the risk of infection as low as possible, but it will hurt like hell. It is probably going to be the hardest pain you have ever felt, but you are going to survive. You promise me to remember that you are going to survive, John?”

Tears rolled down his cheeks as he nodded his head for agreement. I smiled at him, taking the needed instruments from the table. 

“Here we go,” I mumbled to myself before opening the first one of his cuts, accomplishing him to shout from pain, his hands grasping the sides of the bunk. I gritted, centralizing all my focus to my work.

Almost two hours had passed, as a let out a relieved sigh, swiping sweat off of my forehead.

“I think we are done,” I chuckled, a bright smile taking over my lips. “I still have to sew up the smallest wounds but sergeant –you survived the hardest part.” 

He let out a relieved laughter, collapsing to the bed. “Thank you, miss.”

I nodded my head, smiling. “I’m just doing my job.”

“You do realize that you just saved my life,” he raised his eyebrow, smirking. “Actually, I, will you go out on a dinner with me, uh after the war?”

“As much as I like you, John,” I laughed, “I already have someone I’m waiting for.”

“Oh, lucky bastard,” he chuckled, frowning then slightly. “Is he in the army as well?”

“107th,” I nodded, wiping sweat off his forehead with a towel. “Left almost four years ago.”

“Wow that’s,“ he mumbled, “that has to be hard.”

“Well, I could have stayed at home, crying after him but I decided to use the time to do something more useful,” I nodded towards his cuts, letting out a soft laughter. “Like saving your life, Sergeant Winston.”

“I appreciate that, miss,” he smiled warmly. “So, are you looking forward to see him after we have won the war?”

“Oh, I’m counting the days to see him again,” I sighed, feeling tears ascending to my eyes. “What can I say, he is the love of my life.”

New Year’s Eve 1938, New York 

“Y/N slow down,” I heard a desperate shout coming from behind me as I rushed through the crowd, my heart beating like a drum and my lungs dying to get some fresh air. 

I pushed the door open and ran to the alley, tears burning my eyes like they were on fire. 

“Y/N,” a soft, clearly worried voice called my name, but I didn’t turn around. I didn’t want to see him, because each time I did, I fell even harder for him. 

“Leave me alone, Bucky,” I called out, trying to sound strong, yet even I heard my voice shaking. 

“Not until you tell me what’s wrong,” he cried out, turning me around to face his handsome, concern filled appearance. 

“Oh, what’s wrong?” I repeated his words, laughing dryly. “I thought we had something, okay? I really thought that you liked me James, but clearly I was wrong. So if you’ll excuse me, I really would like to go home now.”

“What are you-“

“I saw you, okay?” I found myself shouting, my hands raised to the air from frustration. “I saw you smooching with that blond and I- god I can’t believe I was stupid enough to fall for you.”


“Don’t”, I hissed, stepping further from him. “I don’t want to hear-“

“If you could shut that pretty mouth of yours for a moment-“

“Bucky I don’t care, I really d-,“ 

I didn’t get a change to finish my sentence, as he grabbed my face between his hands and pressed his lips against mine. I gasped from surprise, but soon felt something clicking between us and I relaxed, finding my hand tangling to his hair as I laid my other to his chest, feeling his heart beating almost out of his chest. He moved his other hand from my cheek to my hip, pulling me even closer to him. I couldn’t help but smile brightly against his lips, causing him to pull further from me with a soft chuckle. 

“I love you, dizzy doll,” he breathed out, laying his hand to my cheek to wipe gently away my tears. “I really do and I, I’m sorry of what happened back there, she just attacked me and you left too quick to see me pushing her away and I -“

Bright smile took over my face as I started to realize his words. I shook my head slowly, laughing brightly before suppressing his flood of words with my lips, as I pulled him for even deeper kiss.

“I love you too Buck”, I chuckled as we pulled apart, our foreheads pressed against each others. 

“You,“ he let out a relieved laughter, bright smile on his swollen lips and his dark brown eyes twinkling like thousands of stars, “you love me?”

“Yes,” I giggled softly. “Well I just kissed you, isn’t it obvious?”

“No, not really,” he laughed. “And I kissed you at first, don’t take all the honor.”

“You smacked your lips against mine without a warning,” I rolled my eyes, nipping my bottom lip between my teeth, “so yes, I do.”

“When I last checked you did the same thing for me, sweetheart,” he winked, smiling brightly. 

“Yeah, after you hit me with the I love you –card, so it wasn’t as surprising as your kiss –

He rolled his eyes, laughing brightly before laying his fingers under my jaw to lift my head slowly for a new, soft and caressing kiss. 

“I think we are even know”, he cooed. 

“Nah, you’ve kissed me two times now, and I’ve kissed you only once”, I frowned with a childish pout.

“I’m just kidding”, I laughed as I saw him rolling his eyes, smiling then softly. “Happy New Year’s Eve, Bucky.”

“Happy New Year’s Eve, dizzy doll,” he chuckled, winking me to kiss him one more time.

”Miss Y/L/N?” I heard a soft, yet demanding voice coming from behind me. I looked over my shoulder to see a young woman, with dark brown curly hair and red lipstick. 

“Agent Peggy Carter”, she introduced herself with thick British accent, offering me a hand to shake. 

I glanced at my hands; dyed red from the blood of John’s and flashed her an apologizing smile. 

“That’s alright,” she smiled softly, before taking a serious face. “Miss, we are relocating your cohort instantly. You’ll be working now on straightly with the S.S.R.”

I frowned and stood up from the ground, nodding to one of the unoccupied nurses to come finish sewing up the wound, before leading Agent Carter to our tent to continue the conversation more privately. 

“With the S.S.R.?” I questioned, glancing at her as we get there. “The one that turned Steve,“ I harrumphed, shaking my head, “Mr. Rogers into Captain America?”

“You know Steve, Steve Rogers?” Agent Carter raised her eyebrows, looking unbelieving.  

“Yes, I do know him,” I nodded my head slowly, furrowing my eyebrows as a warm smile took over my lips. “We were friends actually, before the war.”

“I can’t believe it,” she let out a soft laughter, her proper façade faltering harshly. “Steve – Mr. Rogers is working for us as well, we are- friends, I would say.”

“Oh my god,” I laughed brightly, covering my mouth with my hand. “I haven’t seen him since he left -Agent Carter, do you think I could see him?”

“Oh, please, call me Peggy,” she smiled softly, before nodding her head, her smile getting even deeper. “I would to say that you’ll be working mainly with Steve and his team, so yes, I dare to promise you that.”

February 14th, 1939

“Bucky, wait,” I begged, grapping his hand in mine, as we walked into a fancy restaurant with tables draped with white tablecloths, red roses and tall candles decorating them. “What if he doesn’t like me?”

“Who –Steve?” he frowned, laughing softly. “He’s going to love you.”

“Yeah, so you say but-“

Bucky took a deep breath, smile on his lips. “Come here, doll.”

I sighed, stepping closer to him and he pulled me into a deep kiss. Into one of those kisses which made my heart beat and my legs feel weak, making me forget everything and everyone beside us.

“I love you”, he whispered as we pulled apart. “I love you so much and I know that Steve is going to love you as well. He’s my best friend, I’m sure I know him well enough to promise you that.”

I nodded my head, light smile on my lips. “Okay.”

“Okay”, he chuckled, turning to the headwaiter. 

“Good evening”, the old man chuckled, smiling warmly. “Did you have a reservation?”

“Yes, it should be found with name Barnes,” Bucky nodded, smiling politely. 

“Oh yes, dinner for four, I see.”

I glanced at Bucky, as he nodded for answer. “For four?”

“Yeah about that, I uhh might have organized a date for Steve as well,” he let out a nervous laughter. “A blind date.”

I gasped. “Bucky you said that Steve hates dates-“

“Yeah, but Y/N it is Valentine’s Day,” Bucky mumbled, innocent smile on his face. “And the girl seems nice.”

“Oh, sometimes I cannot believe the brainwork of yours,” I laughed, rolling my eyes as the waitress leaded us to our table.

“Sometimes I really do not understand what I see in that jerk,” I laughed, glancing at Steve, who fondled a glass of water in his hands. “I’m sorry about all of this. If I had known what he was planning-”

“Well, it is Bucky we are talking about,” Steve let out a laughter, sitting at the edge of his chair, his yielded back making him look even smaller. “It’s just how he is.”

“You’re right,” I smiled. “Umm, Steve, can I ask you something?”

He raised his head from his hands to look at me curiously. 

“I do understand if you don’t feel comfortable talking about this with me. I mean I am just one of Bucky’s girlfriends after all,” I laughed quietly, rolling my eyes. “But why are you not into dating? You seem like a really nice man.”

“No, it’s okay,” he smiled slightly. “I am, when it comes to the right date. It’s just hasn’t come yet.”

I smiled at him, nodding my head. “I do know how you feel. Before Bucky I had actually never dated anyone,” I glanced at him, letting out a laughter as I saw his surprised expression. “It’s just, with him it felt right from the very first moment.”

“Y/N, you are not just one of Bucky’s girlfriends,” Steve smiled. “He really is serious with you, in a way I never thought that he could be with anyone.”

“He is?” I frowned, bright smile taking over my lips. 

“You are the first one he has ever loved,” he shrugged with a smile. “And I-“

“Talking ‘bout me?” 

“Just about how big of a jerk you are”, I cooed as Bucky sat next to me, pecking a kiss to my cheek. “Did the girl understand?”

“I actually got him another date,” he smirked, nodding towards the bar counter. I bursted into laugh, as I saw her kissing another man, like she had known him for years. 

“That surely wasn’t the right one,” I notified to Steve, laughing.

“Huh?” Bucky frowned, glancing at the two of us alternately. 

Steve laughed softly, flashing a smile to his best friend. “Secrets.”

Part 4

I can’t stop thinking about Stan in the latest episode for a few reasons. Thinking about his character arc in this episode hurts a lot and makes me sad with the possible writing implications. I mean…

He’s feeling overshadowed by his brother as though Ford is the “cooler” one (Mabel even calls Ford a hero). Stan went through all of these troubles to get his family’s approval, to have some love and care returned to him after all that he’s done for the twins.

This episode, the dialogue is really telling on how aware the writers AND Stan are of his age. “I’m old, and I’m not getting any younger.” Stan talked about his gravestone freaking twice if not a third time I missed in this episode alone.

He looks so dang sad when he’s talking to the kids about running for Mayor. So sad that it’s when he talks about his age in a negative way and talks about his gravestone for the first time as far as I remember. You know what really hurts about this? He doesn’t want to be known as the “grifter” when he’s gone. He wants to be worth something before he dies. He wants to be deemed important and loved by his family. They’re the only family he has left after all, right?

Stan spent 30 years getting the portal back up and running without the other 2 journals. 30 years he spent until he got the other two journals and got everything else he needed to finally bring his brother back. The portal caused so much damage… It was dangerous… But he just wanted to save his twin.

And now? This poor man hasn’t been thanked or rewarded with the same love and selflessness in return for all he’s done and been through. He risked his life and everybody else’s lives to get his brother back…. For whatever is going on now.

Where Mabel feels like she doesn’t have much time left to continue being a kid, Stan believes he doesn’t have much time left in his life on its own. I can just imagine him thinking every night that this is the last summer he CAN see and spend time with the twins. Maybe the whole “there aren’t that many [months/years] left” instead of Halloweens like Mabel said in Summerween.

This is a time he finally got his brother back and he can’t even feel close to him like old times. His brother hasn’t shown much interest in spending time with him. Ford mostly seems interested in spending time with, AND impressing the twins. That’s great and all, I guess, but don’t leave your own darn twin brother out of the family picture, Ford…

So… Then I get to the part of this episode that really gets me. There are firework explosives all over the inside of that monument. Stan is rescuing his only family and in the moment the fireworks are about to explode, he talks about his gravestone again. He talks about this as though it IS his last moment alive and he just wants to make sure the twins survive if he doesn’t. Stan also wants that grifter status to not be on his grave. He committed heroic actions in this moment - GENUINE hero moments compared to Ford just putting in the new lightbulb that Mabel called heroic - and he probably would’ve wanted to be remembered for that instead. He’s more and more accepting of his potential death… Just wishing for others to see more in him.

And that’s what really bites and hurts. I’m sure many of us want to accomplish something we’ve dreamed of before we move on from our lives in this world. We want to feel worth whether it’s by our standards or not. When the time comes, we want to be remembered for what we’ve done even in the little ways.

Stan… He’s done so much for his family. He really has. He goes through all this garbage of being kicked out by his dad, feeling unloved by his own brother, and now he seems to feel like his only family is being taken away from him as Ford seems “cooler” than him. All he probably ever desires is to just feel that in return. To be certain that his family is aware of his worth and his importance before he’s not there anymore.

When I think of this more and more, I just hurt more for this poor old man. It worries me that the direction of the writing for his character arc isn’t going to conclude with him remaining alive if the show is to kill off characters later on… To the extent that Alex makes a big deal of future character deaths saying something along the lines of people dying and the audience will cry. What character deaths would make us cry? Not the past mayor. Not some background character with few character arcs, screen time or lines.

The character would have to be a character that’s had an impact on the audience. A character whose arc and development are grand and seemingly coming to a close. It would have to be a character with great opportunity, from an emotional writing standpoint, to tear the audience’s feeling apart. It could be an outright painfully sad death, or a bittersweet death.

Painfully sad death: The character that’s gone through so much, likely sacrificed so much, dies without much reward for his actions and without goodbyes, etc.

Bittersweet death: Same as the other kind of character death, but with a little positivity in the mix. The death is caused by the character’s sacrifice, they probably get to have their goodbyes, and they’re finally recognized for everything that wanted to be recognized for - at the cost of their life. It’s horribly sad that they die either way, but the fact that get rewarded and recognized for what they wanted makes life in the fictional universe seem more hopeful and well-concluded.

So… These are my thoughts… And if we indeed lose a main character, I fear that the direction of writing for Stan is definitely coming to a close sometime soon.

I’ve suspected this for a while because it DOES make story-writing sense to lose Stan, but this episode has only further convinced me that it’s highly probable to happen.

Plus, what’s a big part of growing up and handling the harsh realities of the world? Life endangerment. Believe me when I say that losing grandparents as a kid is the most painful thing to go through. It still hurts when you’re older, but as a kid you cannot grasp the reality of death that easily. It’s new territory, it’s terrifying, and downright depressing. The grandparents that took care of you, babysat you, spoiled you, cease to exist in this world.

This show is about family, and it’s also about growing up. Whether or not Disney allows it doesn’t matter. They’ve let Alex have more freedom, and one of the storyboard artists has claimed that the show gets much darker than they expected to get away with at all.

And… Well… I’ll conclude with that…