you don't know how i feel watching me him doing this!

Common experiences of lesbians who don’t know they’re lesbians yet

 Out of curiosity, I recently googled “Am I lesbian quiz”. Half the “Are You a Lesbian” quizzes just asked outright, “Are you attracted to women?” as though that isn’t the very answer a questioning lesbian is trying to figure out. The other half marked me as heterosexual for things like owning more nail varnish than dogs. I hope this list will give you more nuanced ideas to think about as you explore your identity.

These experiences are all really common among - but not universal or exclusive to - people who later realize they’re lesbians and find a comfortable home in the lesbian label and community.

It’s mostly stuff that I and other lesbians I know have wished we knew when we were first coming to grips with our lesbian identities, because the fact is it takes a long time to discover how common a lot of these experiences are among lesbians, and not knowing what to look for when trying to figure out if you’re a lesbian can be hard.

‘Attraction’ to men

  • Deciding which guys to be attracted to – not to date, but to be attracted to – based on how well they match a mental list of attractive qualities
  • Only developing attraction to a guy after a female friend expresses attraction to him
  • Getting jealous of a specific female friend’s relationships with guys and assuming you must be attracted to the guys she’s with (even if you never really noticed them before she was interested in them)
  • Picking a guy at random to be attracted to
  • Choosing to be attracted to a guy at all, not just choosing to act on it but flipping your attraction on like a switch – that’s a common lesbian thing
  • Having such high standards that literally no guy meets them – and feeling no spark of attraction to any guy who doesn’t meet them
  • Only/mostly being into guys who are gnc in some way
  • Only/mostly being attracted to unattainable, disinterested, or fictional guys or guys you never or rarely interact with
  • Being deeply uncomfortable and losing all interest in these unattainable guys if they ever indicate they might reciprocate
  • Reading your anxiety/discomfort/nervousness/combativeness around men as attraction to them
  • Reading a desire to be attractive to men as attraction to them
  • Having a lot of your ‘guy’ crushes later turn out to be trans women

Relationships with men

  • Dreading what feels like an inevitable domestic future with a man
  • Or looking forward to an idealized version of it that resembles literally no m/f relationship you’ve ever seen in your life, never being able to picture any man you’ve actually met in that image

  • Being repulsed by the dynamics of most/all real life m/f relationships you’ve seen and/or regularly feeling like “maybe it works for them but I never want my relationship to be like that”

  • Thinking you’re commitmentphobic because no relationship, no matter how great the guy, feels quite right and you drag your feet when it comes time to escalate it

  • Going along with escalation because it seems like the 'appropriate time’ or bc the guy wants it so bad, even if you personally aren’t quite ready to say I love you or have labels or move in together etc.

  • Or jumping ahead and trying to rush to the ‘comfortably settled’ part of relationships with guys, trying to make a relationship a done deal without investing time into emotional closeness
  • Feeling like you have to have relationships with guys and/or let them get serious in order to prove something, maybe something nebulous you can’t identify

  • Only having online relationships with guys; preferring not to look at the guys you’re interacting with online; choosing not to meet up with a guy even if you seem very into him and he reciprocates and meeting up is totally realistic
  • Getting a boyfriend mostly so other people know you have a boyfriend and not really being interested in him romantically/sexually
  • Wishing your boyfriend was more like your female friends
  • Wishing your boyfriend was less interested in romance and/or sex with you and that you could just hang out as pals
  • Thinking you’re really in love with a guy but being able to get over him in such record time that you pretend to be more affected than you are so your friends don’t think you’re heartless
  • After a breakup, missing having a boyfriend more than you miss the specific guy you were with
  • Worrying that you’re broken inside and unable to really love anyone

Sex with men

  • Having sex not out of desire for the physical pleasure or emotional closeness but because you like feeling wanted
  • OR: preferring to 'be a tease’ to feel wanted but feeling like following through is a chore
  • Only being comfortable with sex with men if there’s an extreme power imbalance and your desires aren’t centred
  • Using sex with men as a form of self-harm
  • Feeling numb or dissociating or crying during/after sex with men (even if you don’t understand that reaction and think you’re fine and crying etc for no reason)
  • Being bored with sex with men/not understanding what the big deal is that makes other women want it
  • Doing it anyway out of obligation or a desire to be a good sport/do something nice for him
  • Never/rarely having sexual fantasies about specific men, preferring to leave them as undetailed as possible or not thinking about men at all while fantasizing
  • Having to make a concerted effort to fantasize about the guy you’re “attracted” to

Early interest in women

  • Not recognizing past/current crushes on women until you’ve come to grips with your attraction to women
  • Being unusually competitive, shy, or eager to impress specific women when you’re not that way with anyone else
  • Wanting to kiss your female best friend on the mouth for literally any reason (”to practice for boys” included)
  • Getting butterflies or feeling like you can’t get close enough when cuddling with a close female friend
  • Looking at a close female friend and feeling something in your chest clench up and being overwhelmed with love for her - love you may read as platonic
  • Having had strong and abiding feelings of admiration for a specific female teacher, actor, etc., growing up that were deep and reverent
  • Having had an unusually close relationship with a female friend growing up that was different and special in a way you couldn’t articulate
  • Thinking relationships would be simpler “if only I were attracted to women/my best friend who would be perfect for me if she/I weren’t a girl”
  • When a female friend is treated badly by a man, having your protective thoughts turn in the direction of “if I was him/a man I’d never do that to her/my girlfriend”
  • Being utterly fascinated by any lesbians you know/see in media and thinking they’re all ultra cool people
  • Having your favourite character in every show be that one gay-coded or butch-looking woman (like Shego from Kim Possible or Starbuck from Battlestar Galactica)
  • Feeling weirdly guilty and uncomfortable in locker rooms etc., when your female friends are less clothed than they normally would be around men and being more careful not to look than they are

The 'straight’ version of you

  • Thinking that all straight girls feel at least some attraction to women
  • Thinking that your interest in seeing attractive women/scantily clad women/boobs is an artificial reaction caused by the objectification of women in media
  • Being really into how women look “aesthetically”/“just as artistic interest”
  • Thinking it’s objective and uncontested that almost all women are way more attractive than most men
  • Being a really intense LGBT+ “ally” and getting weirdly emotional about homophobia but assuming you’re just a Really Good Ally and v empathetic
  • Having like half your friend group from school turn out to be LGBT+
  • Getting emotional or having a strong reaction you don’t understand to f/f love stories etc.
  • Having had people think you were gay when you had no suspicion you were gay

Exploring attraction to women

  • Feeling like you could live with a woman in a romantic way, even if you can’t imagine doing anything sexual with a woman
  • Feeling like you could enjoy sexual interaction with a woman, even if you can’t imagine having romantic feelings for a woman
  • Thinking you couldn’t be a lesbian because you’re not attractive enough, cool enough, or otherwise in the same league as most of the women you know
  • Interacting with het sex/romance in media by imagining yourself in the man’s position or just never/rarely imagining yourself in the woman’s position
  • Really focusing on the women in het porn
  • Being really into the idea of kissing/being sexual with a woman 'to turn guys on’
  • Being really annoyed when guys actually do express interest in watching or joining in when you do that
  • Only feeling/expressing attraction to or sexual interest in women when you’re inebriated or otherwise impaired

Gender Feelings

  • Having a lot of conflicting gender feelings that are only possible to resolve once you understand you are/can be a lesbian
  • Thinking that being gnc and feeling a disconnect from traditional womanhood mean that you can’t be a woman even if that’s what feels closest to right - many lesbians are gnc and many lesbians feel disconnected from traditional womanhood since it’s so bound up in heteropatriarchy
  • Knowing you’re attracted to women and not being able to parse that (esp + any gender nonconformance) as gay, taking a long time to figure out if you’re a straight man or a lesbian
  • Being dysphoric about the parts of you that make straight men think your body is owed to them, having to figure out what that dysphoria means for/to you
  • Knowing you’re attracted to women, but feeling weirdly guilty and uncomfortable trying to interact with them as a straight man, and only later realizing you’re actually a trans lesbian
  • Knowing you’re gay, but experiencing a lot of the symptoms of comp het when you try to interact with men romantically/sexually, and only later realizing you’re a trans lesbian and not a gay man
  • Being nonbinary and taking a long time to sort through being able to respect/understand your nonbinary identity and your lesbianness at the same time

Considering lesbianism

  • Wanting to be a lesbian but feeling like if you don’t already know you are one you can’t be
  • Feeling guilty about wanting to be a lesbian, feeling like you’re just attention-seeking or trying to be trendy
  • Suppressing your lesbian dreams because you think exploring that desire would mean you’re a bad/homophobic person using lesbianness selfishly
  • Wishing you were a lesbian to escape the discomfort of dating men
  • Fantasizing about how much fun it would be to be a lesbian and just be with women/a specific woman, but thinking that can’t be for you
  • Worrying that some of your past attraction to men was actually real so you can’t be a lesbian
  • Worrying that bc you can’t be 100% sure you’re not attracted to men and can’t be 100% sure you won’t change your mind, you can’t be a lesbian
  • Worrying that you only want to be a lesbian because of trauma and that means your lesbianness would be Fake
  • Worrying that trauma-induced complications in how you experience sex (e.g., a habit of self-harming via sex w men or a fear of any sex at all) mean you’re not a Real Lesbian

Every item on this list is common among Real Lesbians. It’s all Normal Lesbian Stuff. If you’re worried that you can’t be a lesbian even though it’s the life you really want for yourself, I hope this gives you permission to explore that. You are allowed to be a lesbian. 

And if you’re not sure yet – if you took the time to read this entire thing because you’re curious about your identity, if you identified with a bunch of items on this list – you may or may not be a lesbian, but friend, you almost certainly aren’t cishet. Welcome.

(I’d love to hear other things lesbians wish you’d known were A Thing when you were first exploring your identity!)

Mischaracterization of Characters in Haikyuu

Don’t read this if you are not going to have an open mind about it. [Edited]


I am honestly sick and tired of characters being misrepresented here in the Haikyuu fandom. I’m not talking about minor headcanons etc, I’m talking about how more than half of the fandom have been mischaracterizing and diluting characters personalities, twisting them into something that is no way near their original intended character. Quite personally, this is probably one of the worst things you can do. So, right here, right now. I am going to go in depth of some of the most mischaracterized characters in Haikyuu based on my personal opinion. 

This is in no way to hate on any of them, I love every single person in the anime, each for their own individual attributes that make them unique, here, I am merely stating blatant facts based of the manga and anime. So if you like this sort of thing, sit back and grab some motherfucking popcorn cause this is going to be a long-fucking rant.


- Oikawa -

Listen here. Oikawa is not a whiny crybaby who cries all the fucking time, he is probably the most mischaracterized character in the entire fandom. He’s a strong guy who is dedicated to the thing he loves and ensures his teammates can play to the best of their ability. I get that all of us one way or another have an inner sadist in ourselves that makes up enjoy watching our favourite characters suffer psychologically or physically. But when people perceive, write, draw Oikawa as a boy who cries over the smallest of thing, whines, and overall is a weak little shit, it gets very annoying and frustrating. You are diluting his character seriously, tarnishing his real personality and character. And because of that half of the fandom sees him as this weak dude who breaks down and cries over the tiniest and most minuscule of things?

Look at him, does this look like the face of someone who cries all the fucking time? 

Let me say, Oikawa is bloody capable of destroying someone if he wishes. His serves are fucking powerful, and even Ushijima, one of the top spikers in the Miyagi prefecture, acknowledges that. So why do people characterize him as a selfish whiny asshole. You know very well this little ball of terror cares deeply for his teammates, not a self-centred asshole who asks Iwaizumi to bang his ass all the time. Also, why to some people whore him out? He isn’t that type of guy. Although I get that in various different contexts, the situation depends. But just so you know, canon Oikawa is very well a man of pride, I admit, he does whine, but to the extent of using emotional pity to get what he wants is just so out of character

I love Oikawa, probably as much as I love Iwa [IHajime is my favourite character in the series, if you did not know.] , that’s why it’s sad to see that he has been “re-written” by fans as this weak-ass teenager with nothing better to do than tear up all the goddamn time. Really, Oikawa is fucking strong as hell and though he may have a few insecurities, he will crush his opponents with his abilities and strengths. Not fucking whining. 

Even his teammates respect him and put all their trust and faith into this beauty of a captain, they know he can do shit to annoy them, but they acknowledge his true strength and believe in him no matter how dire the situation. He is Seijou’s captain, heartthrob of many high schools, and one of the most respected Setters. So for fuck’s sake, stop diluting his character more than people have already have.

- Iwaizumi -

I wouldn’t go as far to say Iwa’s is as bad as Oikawa’s, however, since he is my favourite character, and I may have a biased opinion towards this, I would like to say some things as to how he has been in some instances misrepresented in the fandom.

Stop mischaracterizing him as this big old brute who does nothing but threaten to hit Oikawa all the time, I mean, sure, he does that, but we all know it’s out of concern. As a personal writer of fanfiction, I often use this to express his concern towards his friend, not a threat, so why are there actually people who see him as abusive? It’s clear this is his way of caring for Oikawa and ensuring he doesn’t hurt himself or overexert his knee in practice. His aggression is just his own way of saying “I care for you so don’t do anything stupid”, also, I’m not very sure why people would think Iwaizumi is the emotionally “Stronger” one between him and Oikawa. If you need a refresher, Iwa isn’t able to keep in his emotions as well as Oikawa, seeing as the very person who told Oikawa the team with the better six is stronger, questioned his self-worth and position as ace because he couldn’t help his team win. In my unpopular personal view on this, Hajime may be more emotional than people make him out to be.

Another thing that genuinely upsets me is that this baby is as strong as Ushijima but doesn’t get the recognition he deserves? Like, give him some credit, his spikes based off official statistics state that it’s a 5/5, just like Ushijima. So can we please do what we can to spread that Iwaizumi is not just the other half to Oikawa and a person by himself as well? You shouldn’t only love him because he makes up the one of the halves to your OTP, you should also love him for the very fact that this baby loves Godzilla, is a huge dork, is a great Senpai, multi-athletic, and most importantly, the ace of Aoba Jousai, a powerhouse school. Give him as much love as you give everyone else. Okay? okay.

Now, moving on to the fandom aspect, may we please have more Oikawa taking care of Iwa? Just have more fanfiction or fanart with Oikawa reassuring he is enough? We have a rather huge amount of fan-related contributions with Oikawa as the person being constantly assured that he is enough and he tried his best. But may I please see more contributions with Iwaizumi being comforted that he is enough, and that he shouldn’t question his role as ace? I don’t know man, but I think Iwa needs that, he has to learn to recognise his own strengths.

- Tsukishima -

Tsukki is not only a salty french fry who looks down on everyone besides Yamaguchi. Tsukki is one of those characters with the best character development. I agree, he can be a dick, but he doesn’t doubt his teammates capabilities. For example, he may find Hinata annoying at first, however, he acknowledges that Hinata has too surprised him with his drive and determination to rise to the top, making him want to be in some way the “moon” that supports the “sun”.

Let me be in honest here. Before I finished watching Haikyuu, all I saw in Tsukki was an unmotivated dick, but after learning how the person he looked up to, in this in case Akiteru, lied to him and made his idea of “working hard to get you anywhere” fall apart, I realised that after knowing this, his character and personality made so much more sense. This boy went from someone who only saw “Volleyball” as a club activity to something he could actually put effort into. That’s right, he tries. This boy does tries. Shocking I know.

- Yachi -

Yachi is not just a girl who gets in the way of your ships. She is so much more than that. She, despite having a very obvious fear of confronting people she is not comfortable with still tries her very best to do what she can for the Karasuno boys. Don’t forget, this little sweetheart is the girl who helped come up with the poster for the team. She put in a lot of effort into that, so I think it would be nice to give her credit where it’s due even if you might not like her.

I personally feel that Yachi has undergone a lot of character development, she went from this fearful girl to someone worthy of being the next manager of Karasuno. She does her best to pick up what she can from Kiyoko so she can be as good of a manager in the future, if not better. So please stop hating on this cinnamon roll just because she might get in the way of you ships. She has done nothing wrong and I don’t feel she deserves hate in anyway, unless you can validify your point and give me good evidence as to why she is to be hated, this treatment towards her is completely unnecessary.

- Kiyoko -

Kiyoko is the classic case of fans over-sexualising her in fanart or in fan-related contributions. This beautiful lady is not just a woman with a big bust and no brains. Mind you, Kiyoko was an ex-athlete. She could whoop your puny ass in running if you try and I highly doubt you’d win. She was the great heroine who brought Hinata’s bag on her two feet excuse yourself. So please don’t paint her as this lady who all guys fawn over just because she is pretty, she has a personality and life too. See past that superficial layer and grow up.

Look at her, look how sweet she is. It is clear she is a little shy at times, yet she, like Yachi, do their best to express their support towards the boys. I think girls in Sports anime tend to receive more hate than usual, mainly with the idea they are a hindrance to your gay OTPs, hey you, what makes you think that? Can’t a girl be a nice to guy platonically? Even if they in fact to get together with someone who is partially but of you OTP, just congratulate them and move on for fuck’s sake. Stop sparking up unnecessary drama when you lack maturity to comprehend that they can do whatever the hell they want. If you are genuinely upset, just write fanfiction to feed your guilty pleasures, no need to hate on anybody.

Look at what a good senpai she is.

- Yamaguchi -

Okay, listen here you little shits. If you hate on this little precious smol cinnamon roll I will rip your throat out and shove it up your ass. Do not tell me that Yamaguchi is just this weak little boy who doesn’t deserve to be on the Karasuno team. Do not tell me that this boy doesn’t try to do his best just so he can play alongside his friends, because more than anyone among the first years, Yama tries the hardest. He finds someone who can teach him a jump float serve so he can prove to be a valuable player and not just a good ol’ bench-warmer. And you can see even if he might not be perfect, this little bean tries so fucking hard to have something he can contribute to the team’s success.

I don’t care if you don’t ship Tsukkiyama or not, honestly, I don’t give two shits about what you ship. But if you hate on him just because you ship some other ship, you are fucked up. What on earth did he do? He’s the best friend of Tsukishima, yes, I perosnally ship them both romantically and just as friends because I do have multiple ships alongside rare-pairs, but why hate on him? Boy, why hate on anybody? Can’t everyone accept that all characters have their on individual strengths, weaknesses, character, personalities? Seeing your NOTPs isn’t a valid excuse to create hateblogs or hateposts against other characters, that is just childish and immature.

- Sugawara -

Suga is not some weak-ass bitch who depends on Daichi for everything JesusFuckADuck. Stop drawing him as this overly-feminine character when his build is not that far off from Daichi’s. Note, I am not saying being feminine is bad, it’s good, definitely, however going as far as to make Sugawara a guy with almost no trace of masculinity left is a little odd. If that’s what you want, go ahead. Just stop portraying him as someone who can’t even defend hiself lmao, Suga will and can whoop anyone’s ass, do you not remember how painful his jabs can be? Even Daichi and Asahi fear him.

Look at him. He can be intimidating, an angel and a devil. He’s Karasuno’s mom alright, but he is a strong independent mother who will and can be strict if he wants to. He was Karasuno’s setter before Kageyama if you don’t remember, he is intelligent, smart and selfless enough to be willing to sacrifice his opportunity to play on the court, because he knows Kageyama taking his place was the best shot to give the team a chance at winning. Yeah well sorry if you’re butthurt if I said that, I just had to remind you guys, seems like some people forgot.

- Kuroo -

[ Contributed by @mayphenix and edited by me. Check them out. ]

Kuroo isn’t a sex god, he’s a dork who likes having fun, teasing his kouhais but knows when he goes over the top and apologizes [Like he does to Sawamura when he thinks he’s hurt Tsukki]. He loves science and is overall a huge little science nerd, currently attending college prep class as one of the top student’s in Nekoma. He’s very well capable of recognizing his opponents’ abilities and strengths, coming up with more than decent strategies to overcome them and pulverising them.

Yes, he is sexy but that’s not a reason to only see him as that. What about his passion and love for volleyball? It’s the guy who learned volleyball by watching on people play it on televsion [Which is pretty close to Volleyball genius Kageyama learning by watching Oikawa] and he’s fucking brilliant at volleyball but he doesn’t let it go over his head. He’s modest and he’s helpful towards his own school kouhais, but also players on other teams, just because he’s just that nice. He just wants to play volleyball and help his coach’s dream to be fulfilled; the Battle of the Trash Dump, live on the national stage. He is such a good person but he’s viewed as this mischievous, mocking and sometimes cunning guy when really he’s got his heart on his sleeve and helps out whenever he can.

- Bokuto -

[ Also contributed by @mayphenix​ and edited by me. Check them out. ]

Bokuto isn’t a fool who is self-centered and moody. Yes he acts like a dork, yes he is moody occasionally. But what matters most is that he has the capacity to pick himself and act like a proper Captain and Ace. [Not that we’ve seen it happen yet, they stated it may be a biased opinion since Bokuto is their favourite character. But I completley agree with them, Please note all this was in their perspective and I am merely adding it onto this master post.] They doubt Fukurodani chose him as Captain simply because he’s the most powerful player and has Akaashi to keep him in check.

In the manga and anime, they say that the rest of the team pulls him forward, and Akaashi says that a strong opponent doesn’t phase him, I believe we’ll see him being the one pulling Fukurodani forward when they need him the most. He takes a lot of pride in being the Ace of a powerhouse school and among the top 5 spikers in the Miyagi prefecture, but like Kuroo, he doesn’t let it get into his head. He also helps out younger players who aren’t even on his team, showing how much of a good senpai he can be. He’s pretty quick to figure out someone’s behaviour or character, since he figures out Tsukki’s personality very quickly. And in the last few chapters we’ve seen him analyze tactics and plays. One does not simply become among the top 5 spikers just because they’ve got big arms and power: They need to be clever enough to think of patterns and attacks and act accordingly to the given situation. He’s not only an owl-obssessed idiot. He’s not a burden and he leads his team proudly. He’s not just moody, he’s just free to be who he wants to be thanks to the trust his teammates have in him.

- Ushijima -

Okay, I want this post to be honest and true, so let’s make it clear. I did not like Ushijima at all in the beginning, not one bit. Which was immaturity on my part because I didn’t see his full story, I saw him as this pushy emotionless guy who had issues with Oikawa not going to Shiratorizawa. But boy, was I wrong. Ushijima is a giant softie at heart who just has trouble expressing his emotions normally, when he does do it, it may not come out the way he had intended it to be. And as a person who has trouble controlling their emotions, I relate to him a lot. Let’s not forget that Ushijima was a single child who was shunned by some people in his family for being left-handed, one of his relatives even suggested trying to correct it though we all know that is not the way to go.

The following is extracted from the Haikyuu wiki. “Ushijima doesn’t speak often, but when he does he bluntly says what’s on his mind and usually comes off as tactless. He will apologize if he realizes that he has insulted someone, but he won’t change his viewpoint.This boy is not some prick who doesn’t apologise alright? He is not a cold-ass villian with no tact, he is just not very emotionally connected our capable. As @manga-trashcan-pen​ has pointed out, Ushijima was an isolated child. Meaning he did not experience much social interaction which should have helped build his character and social sensitivity. He is a human with just as much emotions as anybody, for god’s sake this big bean’s favourite food is rice.

He is a captain who has faith in his team’s ability, he believes that only the strongest could have got onto his team and thus he makes sure to bring out the best in everyone.

- Tendou -

Tendo is a very sad character I would say. Not only was he bullied and ostracized in school, he was not liked by some of his peers even in the later part of his life, even though he is a very respectable and skilled middle blocker. Not only does he have the talent and skill to deduce an opponents moves, he has the physical capacity to actually do what is necessary to prevent it. It makes me a little sad that there are people who actually hate him, cause I absolutely love him and think he deserves so much more recognition.

Let’s back up a little and delve into his past. We know that this little red floof was bullied for looking like a “monster”, but when he moved on to highschool however, we can see so much more of his character as it’s obvious he feels more accepted in the academy. And though he may be at times a little annoying, he is still a little sinnamon roll, just like how he knew not to push on with Ushijima when the latter spoke about his family. This boy does have tact and knows when it’s enough to stop probing. He is not a over-enthusiastic dick who annoys everyone he sees alright? This boy who had no friends went on to befriend one of the most notable spikers in the prefecture. Even going as far as to call Ushijima his best friend.

Never forget what he said when they lost the match against Karasuno. He lost one of the only things that made him feel accepted and if that doesn’t break your heart then go get one.


Since I realised I left out some other really major characters, I have added on. And mostly because you guys like me venting??

This was with the help of other Tumblr users who have helped contributed to this post, I merely did a sum up. Credits and thanks to the following users for adding their share and pointing out other very mischaracterized characters, @mayphenix​ , @gayerthanchanel​ , @dragonarmada​ , @manga-trashcan-pen​ , and KingofhellLordofTime from my instagram.

In the edit, I covered other characters I have failed to mention earlier or who were not brought to my intention

Well, That’s it. That’s the end of this rant. Have a nice day.


[TRANS] non-no Magazine 2018 Jan Issue - 100 Answers w/ BTS

JPN - KRN © 전정국 DC갤러리, 뷔 DC갤러리, ha_ru_man, BTSR_613
KRN - ENG © ktaebwi

JUNGKOOK

Q1. Your dream job when you were a child?
A badminton player when I was in elementary school. After that my parents bought me a computer so I got into gaming and wanted to do a job about gaming.

Q2. How did the members celebrate your birthday in 2017?
We were all practicing singing and dancing and the lights suddenly went off, then the door was opened and Jimin-san and V-san came in holding a cake.

Q3. When do you feel like you have become an adult!
I turned 20 in Japanese age in September! But actually I’m still a kid at heart, so truthfully I don’t really feel like I have become an adult.

Q4. In which moment do you feel like you’re still a kid?
For example, when I watch and think about a video or an interview. When I read people’s comments, I feel like even with the same question, they think from a much bigger point of view than me. That’s when I feel like maybe I’m still lacking in depth.

Q5. A work that touched you recently?
“Love, Rosie”. It made me touched because it’s a sweet but sad love story.

Q6. The kind of song you’re planning to compose?
Song of styles like future base and chillstep which I enjoy and listen to a lot.

Q7. Favorite dessert?
The Japanese snack kinako mochi. I like that it melts in my mouth because it’s just so fluffy! Also I ate cheesecake before the photoshoot for <non-no>. That one was delicious too♡

Q8. How do you take care of your beautiful voice?
I don’t pay particular attention to it… Like I just sing with my original voice I’ve had since I was born…

Q9. Any habit?
Covering my nose when I yawn. Not mouth but nose somehow. (laughs) And I pull the baby hair on my face unconsciously. I know about these things because fans told me.

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maniacaltoaster  asked:

Do you think it's kinda weird that even though the characters in Villainous don't TECHNICALLY have good designs, while that kind of thing destroys other cartoons, in this one, it seems to work in its favor? Like, they look ridiculous, over the top, and crazy, but that feels like exactly what they're supposed to look like.

oh sweetheart let me tell you a little secret

the people who genuinely think the Villainous character designs are bad don’t know a damn thing about designing characters for animation

STRAP IN FOLKS IT’S TIME FOR ANOTHER RANT LESSON ABOUT ANIMATION CHARACTER DESIGN WITH NOVA (brought to you by SCAD: “I pay $35,000 a year to learn how to make cartoons so trust me I know what I’m talking about”)

The first thing any character design class (including the one I took) will teach you is “have a strong silhouette”

You can probably recognize almost if not every single one of these characters just from their outlines! So let’s take a look at the silhouettes of the Villainous cast…

HOLY SMOKES THEY ARE HELLA DISTINCTIVE!!! And here we even see what is probably the design reason for Dr. Flug’s paper bag and Demencia’s huge fluffy ponytail - they add to the strength of their silhouettes immensely.

Now let’s examine both the shape language of the characters AND how they’re likely divided in terms of their digital puppet rigs (as Villainous appears to use both the hand drawn and rigging techniques), because the former is the second thing any character design class will teach you and the latter is incredibly important to the modern digital 2D animation process. (Apologies if my rig estimates are off, I haven’t had as much experience with 2D rigging as I have with hand drawn.)

Black Hat has the most variety out of the cast, but broken up he’s really just a combination of rectangles, triangles and one or two circles. His hat is also kind of a shape in and of itself, one that comes very naturally when drawing his head. Like a lot of villain characters his sharpness is highly emphasized.

Dr. Flug is ALL about squares and skinny rectangles, with his only rounded shapes being his eyes and shoes. Normally when you see boxy characters they’re on the very masculine or muscular side, meant to seem strong or imposing, but Flug is a wimpy, scrawny twig. That’s really unorthodox and something I like a lot about his look.

What’s super interesting about Demencia is that next to 5.0.5, she has the most circles and rounded shapes. Sharpness is added in her details which makes her design look a lot more complex than it really is. What’s great about digital animation and 2D rigging is it makes characters who have a lot of specific details like her much simpler to animate, so she really isn’t impractical at all provided you’re animating her using a computer.

And finally we have Beariplier Markibear 5.0.5, who I’m sure surprises no one by being a big old round baby full of circles. His nose and snout are of course triangles though. I like how he’s the most intentionally simple out of the cast, even going so far as to have a different eye style that almost makes him look like something out of an ultra-cutesy anime. He doesn’t fit in with and stands out a lot from the others, which is entirely the point.

To sum up, the Villainous characters are both simple enough to animate on a budget/deadline and interesting looking enough to want to watch, the perfect combination for modern 2D digital TV animation. These designs were MADE for a 2017 Cartoon Network show in every sense, with just enough early 2000s influence to feel fresh and new as well as classic and nostalgic. I want these guys to represent and become iconic of CN the same way Finn, Jake, Mordecai and Rigby have.

anonymous asked:

Hello! How would you write a dialogue in which a character is freaking out about something? I generally have them word vomit but I don't really like that style. If its too much could you show me an example as well?

Hi!

You could definitely word vomit – especially if your character is hysterical – but that’s not the only way to do it by any means. I know a few other ways.

1. Calmly.
This is strange, considering your character is freaking out, but the freak-out is internal – they’re shutting themselves off due to shock. In this case, they would be quiet, sane, and even if what they’re saying is illogical, it would probably sound reasonable.

“I was right there when she shot him. He dropped like a sack of flour. I figured he was gone as soon as the bullet hit his chest. So now I’ve decided I’m gonna go after her. Right now. And I’m gonna kill her.”
“What? You can’t do that!”
“Sure I can. She killed him, so I kill her. It’s called justice.”
“But- With just your bare hands?”
“The way I feel right now, my bare hands are more than enough.”

Notice how the character who just watched their friend die in front of them isn’t yelling, isn’t stuttering, isn’t getting angry or crying – they’re perfectly calm, almost to the point of complete emotional shutdown.

2. Angrily.
Some people get angry when they lose control and freak out – it scares them, and the fear manifests itself as anger. This type particularly happens when they’re upset about something and other characters aren’t taking it seriously or are shrugging off their concerns.

“No! It’s happening tonight! We don’t have time to think, or weigh things, we need to fucking leave! Now!”
“We can’t. You know that, and you’d remember that, if you were thinking straight-”
“I am thinking straight! It’s you who’s fucked in the head. I don’t give a damn what you think we can and can’t do, we need to clear out of here, right this second.”

As you can see, this character is freaking out – their concerns may or may not have a firm foundation, but obviously they are concerned, and that concern is manifesting itself as fury.

3. By stuttering.
For some people, it’s hard to talk when they panic, because their minds race forward ahead of their mouths and they get tongue-tied. I typically see/use this with more anxious characters, or with characters who aren’t typically good at speaking anyways (in other words, who are uncomfortable talking).

There are a couple of different ways to stutter:
a. Repeat the beginning of each word.

“I tr-tried to s-save him, but he wuh-wouldn’t l-let me … he knew it was g-going to happen. It’s my f-fault!”

(However, keep in mind that this kind of stuttering is more as if your character is crying and trying to talk through sobs and hiccups. Please use it sparingly – it can get old fast.)

b. Repeat words.

“No. No, I don’t know what’s going on, Ricky. Ricky, why would I have any idea? Don’t fucking look at me like that, Ricky. Don’t look at me like I’m lying.”

c. Insert filler sounds: “ah”, “uh”, “um”, and/or curse words.

“I, uh, I- fuck. I, ummm, I think maybe, ah, maybe we should leave?”

For more on stuttering – it can be hard to peg correctly – check out this post.

I hope this helps! If you need anything else, please feel free to ask. - @authors-haven

anonymous asked:

Hey! Can I ask where this " Jeremy Shada said we don't need to worry about lgbt representation, we will be happy" comes from? Is there like a video or a tweet that proves that? Bc I never saw evidence and honestly I am concerned that this is just sb messing with our hopes. Also, isn't it possible that the lgbt representation has nothing to do with lance? Maybe it is sb else. Idk. I hate getting my hopes up ._.

it’s from this post! i doubt the OP is messing with us lol also it’s 100% something to do with lance, my good dude……… BECAUSE……

this is official art by lauren montgomery. i have said this before and i’ll say it again, but pidge’s sign has to do with her arc, her gender reveal. keith’s sign has to do with his arc, his galra heritage reveal. this was posted before s2 aired and it clearly foreshadows galra keith. not coincidences. lance’s sign definitely has to do with him and his arc, his sexuality reveal. lauren would not make keith’s sign and pidge’s sign related to them and then make lance’s sign have nothing to do with him. this stuff is all planned from the start. she’s also the one who said this:

[on expressions] “if we know that a character is feeling something about that- that moment- especially if we know there’s something coming up down the line that maybe hasn’t been revealed, but it would make that character feel a certain way- we try to insert in there a nod to it.”

which is important to remember while watching the show but also when looking at this art because a lot can be taken from their expressions. keith, pidge, and lance look much more unsure and nervous and they’re holding their signs with both of their hands, indicating that HEY this is my sign, it has something to do with me and i’m anxious about it. hunk, allura, and shiro appear to be showing support. shiro and hunk especially look very confident. allura has both of her hands on the sign but her arm is around pidge, like a hug. allura’s the one who tried to coax pidge into telling her her gender. shiro easily could’ve been put with pidge since he was very supportive of her but allura has her own connection to the gender sign (and shiro’s put with lance for a reason). she’s a princess but she is not your “typical princess.” here’s a comment someone left on my klance masterpost about this and i completely agree:

I think Allura has one more reason for holding a gender sign with Pidge, and that is because she challenges the gender stereotypes. She’s not your typical little princess who needs to be protected by all means. She’s a tough young woman that can (and will) kick your ass, and I think that alone is a very powerful message to all the girls that watch this show. It’s a reminder that, no matter what society might claim, they are strong, and they can accomplish anything if they put their mind to it.

hunk has his hand on keith’s shoulder, showing support. he stood by keith after he found out he’s part galra. he was cracking jokes about it and he was there for him. think “belly of the weblum” and all their moments together. also, in “stayin’ alive” when allura thanks hunk for getting the scaultrite, he says, “no problem. you know, keith was there too.” hunk is samoan, so he also has his own connection to the race sign. then, we have shiro holding the LGBT sign with lance, one hand on his shoulder in support. the LGBT rep definitely has to do with lance, you shouldn’t worry. there’s so much backing it up. i think shiro will play some sort of supportive role when it comes to lance’s sexuality and since hunk and allura are connected to the signs they’re holding, shiro may end up being LGBT, too. also, the sign art connects with the paladins of old, as well… which was pointed out to me by @farmlandtensions:

zarkon, a galra, was the original black paladin.
keith, a part galra boy, is the current black paladin.
THE RACE SIGN. 

trigel, the only female paladin on her team, was the original green paladin.
pidge, the only female paladin on her team (before allura became a paladin, obviously) is the current green paladin.
THE GENDER SIGN. 

blaytz, who was shown flirting with a male galra, was the original blue paladin.
lance, a boy who is totally not straight, we grew to know as the blue paladin.
THE LGBT SIGN. 

they make parallels and show similarities between blaytz and lance to show that, yes, they’re comparing them rather than comparing blaytz and allura.

for the 100th time, this stuff isn’t a coincidence. 

the bi flag colors and the gay flag colors have been used in the show on two separate occasions now. first, in s1ep6… an episode with some great klance moments. next, in s3ep3… another episode with some great klance moments. studio mir is animating VLD and they also animated TLOK. the bi flag colors were in the background of the finale of korra. i’ve always theorized that since pidge’s gender arc was in s1 and keith’s race arc was in s2, that lance’s sexuality arc would be in s3. other people think this, too. seeing as how s4 is basically just part 2 of s3, taking the BIG amount of development between keith and lance in s3 into consideration and the fact that lance did not flirt with allura for the entirety of s3, or anyone, actually. i think this will, hopefully, come to fruition in s4 and they will touch on lance’s sexuality. if not, we’ll get it eventually

also, in interviews, they don’t always simply say lance flirts with girls. jeremy shada, especially, does this. in lance’s birthday livestream, he says:

[about lance] “a super like, flirty person that’s hitting on every *hesitates* person that has two legs.”

i’m not kidding btw, he literally hesitates a little before saying person. i don’t have the link to the vid but you can find it easily by googling lance’s birthday livestream. in the famous “lance falling in love” quote, he does this, too:

jeremy would definitely know by now that lance isn’t straight and it’s really obvious that he’s sitting on that information. he’s done this at least one other time that i know of, as well. if lance was straight, this stuff? it would not happen. they would always just say girl/girls.

[All of this happened because I wanted to write something about Stiles not being able to sleep without his pillow. Spoiler alert: his pillow is Derek.]

-

Derek tries not to look too hurt when Stiles says he’s going back to Washington, but when the Sheriff claps his back and Scott offers him a friendly hug, he knows he failed. But after everything, after the other night - it just doesn’t feel fair.

-

“It was a nice road trip, wasn’t it?” Stiles had said after they’ve won, after everything was done, their friends were alive and fine and Derek finally got his loft back. “I mean, we had some fun, right?”

Derek smiled without looking away from the flowers the Sheriff got him as a housewarming gift. “Yeah.” He answered, finally turning around. “It was nice to spend time with you.” It was more than nice and he cursed himself for not being able to say it, still, after everything, after the nights spent driving and talking and fucking in deserted roads.

“Yeah.” Stiles agreed easily. He was the one who started it after all, always showing up to save Derek - despite Derek saving him back plenty of times - always being there, trusting him, smiling and laughing like Derek makes him happy. “What will you do now that you’re a free man again?”

Derek shrugged. “I always wanted to start a farm, maybe raise some sheep?” When Stiles blinked at him, surprised, Derek let out a snort.

“Fuck you, I almost believed it!” Stiles said, punching his shoulder.

“You’re ridiculous.” Derek shook his head, still smiling. 

You’re ridiculous.” Stiles stressed, his hand still on Derek’s shoulder, touching, teasing. “I’m -“ Derek didn’t let him finish then, turning around and just pressing their lips together.

He didn’t want to listen then - and in hindsight maybe he should’ve - but without the haste, the guilt of having a nice time whilst their friends could be dying, Derek couldn’t wait, he just wanted to worship Stiles’ body, just wanted to kiss all the places he couldn’t reach before when they were squeezed in the backseat of Stiles’ car. 

And so he did, he made Stiles moan his name the entire night and he moaned Stiles’ own just as louder. Just to have his heart crushed the morning after.

-

“I’m gonna miss you.” Stiles says, his Jeep packed and ready to go. To leave everything behind.

It’s unfair, Derek knows. Stiles didn’t make promises and neither did he, but he can’t help how he feels. He understands Stiles doesn’t want to be in Beacon Hills anymore and that’s his choice, but Derek made his own and he’s tired of running away.

He’s never felt closer to his family than when he’s here, he’s already lost enough and he doesn’t want to lose his home. But somehow, as Stiles drives away, he feels like he just did.

-

I miss you, Derek thinks every day, staring at the black screen of his phone and wondering if he should actually write those words and send them to Stiles. He decides against it and despite the fact he was joking before, on the third day after Stiles left, Derek buys a farm.

He tells Lydia first during lunch at her favorite restaurant - she was adamant they had to become best friends and Derek enjoys her company so he lets it happen easily - and she tells him he’s not allowed to wear plaid around her. Then he tells Scott and two days later, he shows up at Derek’s front door with all kinds of seeds - “We need pumpkins for Halloween, Derek. Make it happen!”.

It’s something to do with his hands, something to work on. Create life, instead of ending them, build things, instead of destroying. He feels good, better and healing. Cora says he’s calmer now and Derek smiles, despite knowing she won’t be able to see him, and tells her he is.

Some days Stiles texts him, others he doesn’t. Derek reads the ones he has every night before going to bed, but he never answers them.

Keep reading

***Nearly 3 weeks into the hiatus and I am missing Magnus and Alec desperately. Matthew Daddario voice: *When is it gonna end?” Siiigh. But well, what better way to spent the hiatus then reading some great Malec fanfics, right? Right. Because I have read a lot of amazing fics incl. discovering some great new authors. And now that autumn is coming…. the perfect time to read more.

Also, I am overwhelmed how many notes the last rec post got and how much you all enjoy(ed) it. So I hope this 5th edition will get a lot of love, too. Again, let me know if you liked this and if I should continue doing this. But now, have fun reading, pumpkins.***


FALL WITHOUT WINGS by @notcrypticbutcoy [ M | 144k | WIP ]

Alec has been told the same stories all his life. He’s been taught the same lines, over and over again. Downworlders are reckless, impulsive, demonic. They’re not to be trusted.

And Magnus Bane is the epitome of everything evil about Downworlders.

At least, that’s what people keep telling him. Alec’s not quite so sure anymore.

Or: In which the Nephilim have wings, are taught to loathe Downworlders, and Alec is presented with a conundrum when Magnus Bane saves his life.


HOLDING THE STICK by @baneismyexistence​  [ M | AU | 80.3k | complete ]

Alec Lightwood has dreamed of hoisting Lord Stanley since he was eight. It’s in his blood. He’s spent the last five years trying to make that dream a reality, only managing to fall short each time.

Until a scandal leads to a multi-team trade that sends Magnus Bane his way. One of the top performing wingers in the league. An up and coming star.

And the most handsome man Alec has ever met.

He’s doomed.


STRANGE LOVE by arandomfan91 [ M | AU | 46.6k | complete ]

Alec is in love with Magnus. Magnus needs Alec to be his fake boyfriend. What could possibly go wrong?


STRANGE LOVE - EXTRAS by arandomfan91 [ T | AU | 13.8k | complete ]

Missing scenes and chapter re-writes from Strange Love, all told from Magnus’ POV.

These extras are tied in with the fic Strange Love. You should read that story first before reading this!


FOOLS RUSH IN by @m-aleciseverything [ M | AU | 85.2k | complete ]

Alec, Jace, and Simon go to Vegas for Jace’s bachelor party and things get a little bit ridiculous.

Alec wakes up the next morning and…wait a minute, who’s that in his bed?


AND THE OSCAR GOES TO… by @lecrit  [ E | AU | 21.5k | complete | Stars Aligned #1 ]

Working for Magnus isn’t easy. Magnus is out of control and Alec has to yell more often than not to get him to listen to him. He hates everything formal because it means he has to watch his mouth. Most importantly, Magnus is an incorrigible flirt.

Which would be alright if Alec wasn’t utterly, irremediably, unfathomably in love with him.


IT’S ALWAYS YOUR MOVE by @lecrit  [ E | AU | 15.5k | complete | Stars Aligned #2 ]

Maryse Lightwood is fierce, determinate and she is standing right in front of Magnus, on the threshold of his house, the scowl on her face announcing nothing good.

Magnus hasn’t seen her since the Oscars ceremony three days ago. To be fair, he hasn’t really seen anyone, too busy that he had been catching up on lost time with Alec.

Magnus thought he could be tranquil forever after winning an Oscar and finally confessing his feelings to Alec. Magnus was wrong.


WALK OF FAME by @lecrit  [ M | AU | 13.5k | complete | Stars Aligned #3 ]

Alec is fairly certain he is the luckiest man in America. On earth. Possibly in the entire universe.

He slowly started to convince himself of the now indisputable fact when Magnus and him started dating a year ago after the ceremony that crowned Magnus as King of the World (or Best Actor, but Alec isn’t always objective when it comes to his boyfriend).
A lot happened in a year, and Alec knows eventually the wheel is bound to spin and his luck might dim and vanish but as of now, he still feels like the luckiest man on earth, and he is going to make the most of it for as long as it lasts.


CATCHING THE LOVE BUG by @daddariossmile [ M | AU | 3.5k | complete ]

In which the Lightwood siblings always end up in the hospital, Alec spends a lot of time waiting around, and the charming Dr. Bane is more than a little attractive. 


SYMPATHY FOR THE PRINCE by @ketzwrites [ M | AU | 31.9k | complete ]

Prince of Hell Magnus Bane, was tired of his life in Hell. Every day was the same; condemned souls being punished for their wrong doings, demons feasting on the worst humanity had to offer, two or three deals with a few greedy humans. It was dull, uneventful. Boring.

So Magnus packed his bags and moved to New York City. As the owner of the lavishing club Pandemonium at the heart of Manhattan, Magnus enjoyed a life without worries for five years, until the fateful night where a former client was murdered on the streets.

It was then that he met no-nonsense Homicide Detective Alec Lightwood, owner of incorruptible morals and the tightest ass Magnus has ever seen. Earth was fun, after all.


TODAY YOUR BARISTA IS… by @baneandgone [ G | AU | 2.4k | complete ]

alec works in a coffeeshop. one day jace hijacks the chalkboard out front

(aka one of those ‘today your barista is’ sign aus)


THIGH HOLSTER by @everydayisonfire [ E | PWP | 2.2k | complete ]

Magnus doesn’t get distracted by a certain Shadowhunter, wearing a tight thigh holster.
Nope. Absolutely not.


ON THE SUBWAY by The_Forgotten_Nobody [ G | AU | 1.4k | complete | On The Subway #1 ]

Confused, Magnus followed Rafael’s line of site to the opposite side of the train where a young man sat, pulling silly faces. However, the moment he realised Magnus was staring his face flushed and he stopped, averting his eyes as if he hadn’t just answered all of Magnus’ prayers. In more ways than one as well because not only had he calmed Raf down but he was gorgeous.


MR LIGHTWOOD, MR BANE by TruePlainHearts [ E | PWP | 2.2k | complete ]

“Lovely to see you, Mr Lightwood.”

“And you, Mr Bane. Thank you for taking the time.”

*****

The kinky, shameless smut that occurs right after the rest of the clan leaders leave. Magnus and Alec make excellent and creative use of Alec’s new office and its expansive mahogany desk… and its sturdy door.


MR. LIGHTWOOD by @nanf1c​ [ M | 1.2k | complete ]

A ‘no kissing, looking at suggestively or touching’ rule was applied when it came to Magnus and Alec at the downworlder meeting. Magnus respected that, respected his man, and tried his best as soon as he walked through the doors of the institute. But now, back in his loft, with the night fallen and Alec returning through the front door from a demon attack, looking battered and exhausted, Magnus couldn’t help but keep the game going.


YOU HAVE ME by @hufflebee​ [ G | 664 | complete ]

They stay on the balcony for a while, listening to the sounds of New York at night. Alec noticed the glasses and the discarded pillows when he walked in, but he doesn’t want to break the comfortable silence they’ve fallen into. He looks over at Magnus, and by the angel, he looks beautiful, breathtaking. but the longer Alec watches him, the more he can see the makeup and hair and the clothes for what they really are.

An armour.


PARADISE IN BETWEEN by Teumessian [ E | 7.8k | complete | The Boundless Saga #4 ]

In the months following the loss of the Mortal Cup, anxieties run deep. It’s no time for a vacation, and yet… Magnus has had a lot of years to practice the art of persuasion.


WITH MY BODY AND SOUL, I WANT YOU MORE THAN YOU’LL EVER KNOW by liamandzayn [ E | PWP | 4.3k | complete ]

Alec captures the defined line of Magnus’ jaw between eager yet clumsy fingers, tilting his face upwards as they gasp into each other’s mouths, exchanging fevered gusts of breath. Magnus seizes the swollen flesh of Alec’s bottom lip with gentle teeth, nipping gingerly, suckling with avid hunger and Alec’s groan resonates loud and clear throughout the room. By the angel, he wants this man desperately; his need has become a physical ache, pulsating through his nerve endings and coiling strictly around his burning muscles.


BEGIN AGAIN by ReneeWritesx [ not rated | AU | 21k | complete | A Light To Call Home #1 ]

Unpacking sucked. And Magnus had only brought like half of his things. Okay, maybe two-thirds. But whatever, it didn’t matter. What did matter was that Magnus was sweating from carrying boxes, the cottage had no air conditioning, and he was super close to packing everything back up and driving back to New York in about three seconds.

-

Or the one where heartbreak is a pain in the ass, Magnus is forced to spend the summer in a small cottage in the hopes of finding his passion for design again, and manages to piss off the cute neighbor after only being there for two days.

“The only real pain in life is between hanging on and letting go.”


IN THE INSTITUTE by sarahrae5135 [ E | 6.1k | complete ]

Magnus stays at the Institute for the first time.


THE MORNING AFTER by @asexualalexanderlightwood​ [ not rated | 733 | complete ]

A small little post finale fic for anyone in need of more Malec loveliness


BETTER FOR YOU by @zrdu [ not rated | 9.2k | complete ]

Magnus’ and Alec’s relationship comes to a sudden halt when Maryse interferes. They both try to cope without each other.


WITH YOU WRAPPED AROUND ME, THE WORLD FEELS PERFECT by @matsdaddario  [ E | 3.6k | complete | Lovely Firsts #3 ]

Magnus is still asleep; Alec can feel the steady rise and fall of his chest against his own back, and Alec takes the few minutes just to enjoy being wrapped up in Magnus’s arms. He looks down at their hands threaded together, resting against his stomach. He loves the contrast between them; tan and pale, long and lean, deep red nail polish and short, bitten nails. There’s something comforting there too. How different they can be, but how well they fit together. Alec has a moment of feeling like they were made to fit together. It might be stupid, it brings a blush to his cheeks, but a warm feeling settles in his stomach at the thought. He likes that.


ONE DAY by @magnusragnor​ [ T | 1.3k | complete ]

“Do you -” Alec started, hissing his teeth in pain and looking up at Magnus. “Do you have any more of that free of charge warlock TLC?”

“What are you -?” Magnus asked, before the memory hit him full force and he tried not to laugh, because Alec was hurt, god damn it. But Alec was smiling up at him and his eyes were shining bright full of hope and love, so Magnus leaned down and kissed him.


MORNINGS LIKE THIS by @softmagnusbane​ [ G | 1.1k | complete ]

Alec feels all his love for the man in his arms bubble up to the surface looking at him like this. Sleep rumpled and peaceful, his hair is a soft mess that Alec almost can’t wait to run his fingers through when Magnus wakes up, his lips so kissable and slightly open. There is nothing better in this world than being able to wake up to this he thinks idly.


PLAYING WITH FIRE by Obsessivecompulsivereadr [ M | 3k | complete ]

Alec’s breath catches nearly every time he looks at Magnus, and it happens even during times they haven’t been on an official date. But tonight is different. Magnus isn’t his sedate and dignified self right now. He’s back to being flirty and relaxed, and he looks so good that Alec can’t stop thinking about touching him.


SO BRIGHT by @lemonoclefox [ G | 17.5k | complete ]

Alec has come out, but that doesn’t stop his parents from their continuous attempts to set him up with a nice shadowhunter girl. So, what better way to finally get them off his back, than to say he has a boyfriend? Problem solved. Except they now apparently want to meet this guy, who doesn’t exist. Thankfully, Magnus Bane – who encouraged Alec to come out in the first place, and whose silent crush on Alec is just as bad as Alec’s crush on him – is more than happy to help. Even if the night doesn’t end up going entirely as planned.


SLOW ME DOWN FOR A MINUTE by @abloodneed​ [ E | 7k | complete ]

They stared at each other for a moment, each beat of Magnus’s heart seeming to thicken the air again, pulling them back to the charged space they had fallen into on all of their dates. They’d fallen into this feeling here in the loft, out in the world, so many places where everything suddenly just felt intense and present. They were in this charged space where their bodies were saying one thing, and one thing only.

I want you so badly.


BLUE CHRISTMAS by Hobbit69 [ E | AU | 1.5k | complete | Blue Steels Series #6 ]

Just a quick fic to fill in a Christmas need I have for my Blue Steel Series. Takes place between “Blue Extravagance” and the upcoming “Blue Righteousness.”
Magnus and Alec “come” together for the first time since Alec’s injury and the boys wake up for Christmas morning.


BLUE RIGHTEOUSNESS by Hobbit69 [ E | AU | 41.1k | complete | Blue Steels Series #7 ]

After returning from medical leave, Detective Alexander Lightwood-Bane catches his roughest case up to date. When one of his properties, a club called Kebebasan is attacked by two gunmen, Magnus Lightwood-Bane calls the best cop he knows. During the course of the investigation, Alec discovers that this shooting isn’t an isolated incident, but the result of domestic terrorism; a group attacking what they consider to be amoral. Alec and his partner, Jace Herondale have to move quickly to stop this group before it causes wide-spread panic in the city and more loss of life.


LUNCHDATE WITH AN AFTERNOON DEBATE? by eenkhjin [ G | AU | 5.7k | complete]

Magnus Bane goes out to get lunch but comes back with a mission to prove someone wrong. Kind of…


TO LOVE A SHADOWHUNTER by Madalena [ E | 10k | complete | The Peacemaker Chronicles #1 ]

“Are you really going to risk your life for a Shadowhunter?”

Those were some of the last words that Magnus Bane had said to Dot before he stepped through his portal to his lair, protecting only the warlocks. Abandoning the rest of the Shadow World to Valentine and his Circle.

Dot wasn’t sure how long she had been under Valentine’s control, but now as she stood on Magnus’ balcony, hours after Magnus and Clary had portalled away to the Institute, to save both Shadowhunters and Downworlders, she knew something had changed.

Someone had changed him.


OBLIVION by @champagnemagnus [ T | 2.7k | complete ]

Alec stood up, keeping a careful distance and being sure to move slowly as he approached. “Magnus, I am so sorry. For everything you had to go through.”

Magnus’ eyes never moved from the spot on the floor he was staring at. He shook his head slightly, eyebrows furrowed deeply. “That agony rune…” He paused, taking a moment to swallow. His face was drawn in so much pain that Alec had to look away for a moment. He immediately punished himself by digging his fingernails into his palm. It was selfish to worry about his pain. He had certainly inflicted more than enough on Magnus that he had to atone for. “Made me remember things that I spent…centuries trying to forget.”


ONE SHOW ONLY by @gingersnapwolves [ E | AU | 29.4k | complete ]

It’s hard to stay in the closet when the guy you had a one-night stand with two nights ago turns out to be your new partner … but Alec will be damned if he isn’t going to give it a try.


THE RED BUTTON by @ketzwrites [ M | AU | 38k | complete ]

After one black out too many, Ragnor and Catarina had enough of Magnus trying to drink himself to an early grave. It was time for an intervention and they had the perfect place in mind: The Institute, the best rehabilitation installation in the New York state.

Only Magnus wasn’t exactly asked for his opinion on the matter. And if there is something Magnus doesn’t like, is to be forced into something.

Maybe the Head of the Institute, Alec Lightwood, is enough of an argument to chance his mind?

#awkward #pining #ministry

Prompts: @tera2
Author: @queenofthyme

Harry read the article again. He didn’t know why he put himself through it. Rita Skeeter’s outlandish claims never failed to make him angry. And he’d already forced The Daily Prophet to run a redaction days ago. 

No, he did know, actually. It was the accompanying image. The one with Draco Malfoy staring right into the camera, unblinking, a challenge in his eyes. It was familiar but at the same time nothing Harry had ever seen before (except during his many rereads of this particular paper). Malfoy had aged. Matured obviously since he was now a Ministry official. There was just something about his face. The same but different. Harry was drawn to it.

“Auror Potter." 

Harry looked up to find that same face at his doorway, focusing a steely gaze on Harry. He was so shocked he forgot he was holding a cup of tea. It dropped to his desk with an embarrassing clatter, spilling its contents, all over Malfoy’s inked face.  

The Malfoy at Harry’s office door – the real one – didn’t move. His eyes flickered down to Harry’s desk, watching the spill unfold passively.

Harry jumped to his feet and quickly bundled up the wet paper, throwing it face down into a waste basket at his feet. He wasn’t sure if he’d been fast enough.

He looked back up to Malfoy, searching for any sign he might have seen. Nothing. But that hardly meant much. Harry suspected Malfoy’s emotions didn’t play so obviously on his face anymore. He nodded in what he hoped was a professional courteous manner. "Dralfoy.”

Harry froze, the awful blunder hitting his ears just as it came out of his mouth. He could feel himself blushing, his palms getting clammy, his knees weak. Was simply Malfoy’s presence enough to make him come undone these days?

And just when he thought things couldn’t get worse, Harry, not quite sure how much longer he’d be able to stand for, slumped back into his seat - or at least attempted to – but misjudged the position and ended up plummeting to the floor instead.

The only saving grace – if there was any positive to the situation at all – was that at least on the floor, behind his desk, he was hidden from sight. He wondered if he crawled under his desk and stayed there, if Malfoy would get the idea and leave. Harry was seriously considering the option when Malfoy came into view again, stepping around the desk to loom over Harry.

He offered a hand. Harry gladly took it, forgetting for a moment the current predicament of said hands. And sure enough, after Malfoy helped Harry to his feet, he quickly let go and wiped his hand on his trousers.

Harry wanted to close his eyes and crawl up into a ball in the corner of the room. He never wanted to look Malfoy in the eye again. In less than a minute, he had made himself look like a complete fool. And all it took was for Malfoy to walk in the bloody room.

Malfoy cleared his throat. “I just came by to say hello. I thought it was polite given we work in the same building now. Which, of course, you already know.” His eyes darted to the waste basket. Shit.

“I had The Daily Prophet write a redaction,” Harry blurted out, as if that would help. Although at least he managed to get the words right this time.

“That was you? I should have guessed. You never miss an opportunity to save my skin.” Malfoy’s lips quirked upward for the smallest moment before his composure returned. “Well, it was nice seeing how the other side lives. I suppose I must get back to it.”

“Right,” Harry managed to nod. “I’ll get the door for you.”

They both stared at the open door.

Having already committed to the pointless task, Harry hurried forward and tripped over his own feet, falling right into Malfoy’s waiting – his reflexes were still as fast as they were in Quidditch – arms. Could Harry be more embarrassing?

Malfoy righted Harry but kept a firm grip on him – perhaps he thought Harry might slump to the floor otherwise, which was probably an accurate assumption at this stage.

There was amusement in Malfoy’s face now, a lightness in his eyes. “Are you always this clumsy, Potter, or am I special?”

“You’re special,” Harry answered quickly as he didn’t want Malfoy to think this was how all his mornings went. Although, after he realised what he’d said, he quickly tried to take it back: “No, I mean, wait, I mean, that’s not what I  -“

Malfoy took a step back, dropping his arms. “No need to be so flustered, Potter,” he interrupted. “I keep all the newspapers with your face on them too.”

Harry’s brain short-circuited. He must have stood there blinking at Malfoy for a solid five seconds before he was able to ask: “All of them?”

“Thirty-four and counting.” Malfoy winked. “You know, Potter, if you were to take me out to dinner, I’m sure the outing might be scandalous enough to make the front page. We could add to both our collections.”

“If I – you – dinner?” Harry repeated, a little discombobulated.

“Why, Potter,” Malfoy said, a cheeky smile appearing on his face, “I thought you’d never ask. I’d love to.”

Harry blinked – it was the only action he was capable of.

Malfoy laughed lightly when Harry didn’t reply. He made to exit, but paused briefly to call out over his shoulder: “I finish at six.”

Only when Malfoy was out of view did Harry let his knees give in.

more like this l @queenofthyme

anonymous asked:

Okay but just think of the dozens of Sterek fics that will come from that small scene of Stiles saying blindness is his biggest fear and Derek questioning him. I can just imagine one with Derek hearing Stiles heartbeat stutter and later confronting him about it and Stiles being all like 'of course it's not my biggest fear, don't you know me at all? My biggest fear is losing you again, watching you bleed out and not being able to do anything about it, not being able to save you.'

Derek’s eyes linger after Stiles looks away, his body shifting restless, fingers clenching and loosing in a twitch across the exam table. The lie hangs bright and obvious in the air –– less in the absent hitch of heartbeat or the burn of nerves that don’t taste quite like embarrassment or like fear. Derek could explain those things away in context if he tried, but he can’t explain the way the words fail to line up with everything he knows he knows about Stiles.

“Becoming blind?”

“Yeah… terrified of it. Always have been.

He wonders if it’s as obvious to Scott as it is to him, but the rest of the group’s already moved on, not missing a beat, focus shifted back to the problem at hand while Stiles re-centers. His pulse sharpens again and his eyes lift back to Derek, flicking up and away before moving back to Scott again, sliding seamless back into the conversation.

Derek shakes off the strangeness, and follows him.

.-

“Why did you lie in there?”

Stiles’ step falters on the question, and the resigned set of his shoulders tell Derek he’d been expecting this and hoping every bit as much to avoid it. Derek almost wants to take it back, tell Stiles is doesn’t matter, let whatever horror lives in the darkest place of Stiles’ heart lie there undisturbed… but this is too important.

He crosses his arms, keeping his tone and stance indifferent like that might make this conversation any easier.

“We need to know what’s coming, Stiles. When these things manifest, it’s not just going to be your fear anymore. It could threaten everyone.”

He’s not expecting the laugh that punches out of Stiles, harsh and thin and edged bitter enough to make Derek’s unaffected stance falter.

“Don’t you think I know that?”

Dark masks and fireflies float through Derek’s mind. A too-pale stranger with Stiles’ face and cold, ancient eyes. A huge lizard with paralyzing claws, and too-wet breaths as water threatened to pull them downward. A misshapen wolf with crimson eyes and spittle-laced breath, and an image of ghostly horsemen Derek had never seen, only heard of in Peter’s stories.

Derek could stab guesses at Stiles’ worst fears, could conjure up possibilities in Stiles’ quaking hands and nervous eyes as they darted out to the empty parking lot, looking for an escape before moving reluctant back to Derek. But he couldn’t know, and he needed to know, especially if it was something that could hurt the group.

…Especially if there was a way he could help Stiles prepare for it.

When it comes, he’s the one who’s unprepared.

“I can’t lose you again,” punches out rough and shaken, stunning Derek into stillness. Salt stings the air as tears well, and Stiles looks away on a wet breath, hand raking into his hair and tugging. “You were… dying and I walked away. I had to, there was nothing I could–– And then you were just gone afterward and I knew you were fine, I knew it was better that way but… fuck, Derek. It felt like you’d died some days.”

The tear tracks down and Derek feels his head shaking, arms falling from their faux-casual cross. The words are ringing through his mind, rattling around in a way that makes no sense and makes too much sense, echoes something too raw and honest inside him and he steps forward, “Stiles…” falling out soft, but Stiles is rocking a step back, shaking his head and swiping rough at the tear. Derek lets him retreat.

“My mom died in front of me.” This confession falls out soft, and Stiles’ shoulders shrink in against the sting of them. He looks small again, sixteen or years younger, and it takes an effort not to move in and shelter him from the sting of his own words. “And I just… I couldn’t do anything. Couldn’t save her. Do you know how that––” He cuts off, because he knows Derek knows. Derek understands that feeling better than anyone. It’s a bond Derek’s always wished they didn’t share.

Stiles shakes his head, blinking quick.

“Fuck, I can’t go through that again, ok? If these things are bringing our worst fears to life then I’m better off away from it, for everyone’s sake. What if it kills you because of me, because–– I can’t watch someone else I love die.”

The words hang. Stiles has gone strangely still suddenly. In the clinic, some young pup sets up howling.

“…You love?” Because Stiles had been talking about his mother, but he’d also been talking about Derek. About losing loved ones, and that…

Stiles’ breath hisses out, body tensing up defensive and challenging. His hands ball up, shoulders setting broad again, and it feels like every argument they’ve ever had when Stiles meets his eyes, daring him to doubt the revelations he’d just laid out.

Derek had learned a long time ago not to doubt Stiles.

“Don’t be an idiot,” he says, like it’s obvious. Like it’s some undeniable fact that Stiles loves him, fears losing him, that in all the nightmares of Stiles’ life, losing Derek could rest in anywhere near the same category as possession or dementia, or his mother’s death. But Stiles has always been afraid of losing people he loved, of not being able to save them… and Derek is one of those people. 

Derek is the person Stiles couldn’t look at while thinking about loss.

He moves forward a step, and Stiles doesn’t retreat this time, amber eyes locked with an expression that’s caught somewhere between challenge and pleading.

It’s one of the most terrifying moments of Derek’s life as he lifts his hand to Stiles’ cheek, and the most natural thing in the world once it’s resting there.

“I’ve died before,” he reminds Stiles, softly. “That’s not about to beat me. I’ll always come back… for you.”

“For me?” Stiles sounds breathless, doubt and hope warring as Derek’s thumb brushes over his tear-streaked cheek.

Derek tilts his head, warmth touching his eyes.

“Don’t be an idiot.”

When Stiles grins and presses their lips together, Derek forgets what it’s like to be afraid.

deal | pt 2 (m)

Originally posted by sugamysavagebaby

summary: the years spent working hard had really paid off and was it so wrong to want to rub that in a few faces? The cliché mean girls that often teased you for not doing anything with your hair or clothing, wouldn’t it be great to show off someone like Jungkook? High school reunion au + ceo!jeon

word count: 6,848 

warning: pure filth you’re welcome

part one | part three


Jungkook is no longer tender, his lips ravish your body in such a way that it has you believing that the powerful kiss you had shared earlier that evening was nothing but a mere brush of flesh upon flesh.  Hands don’t hold you like priceless porcelain, instead it’s with a vice like grip that he clings to the skin of your hips almost as if he’d cease to exist if he let go.

Keep reading

Hey guys! I’ve told you before that I’m a writer so this is a hella long post because it’s track-by-track. Unapologetically so. Hope you guys enjoy x 

TRACK 1: “… READY FOR IT?

 This song is a battlecry. The thumping bass brings to mind the heavy thud of wolves paws as they race towards their prey, seeking the trail left by a girl who used to leave her heart open and on her sleeve, ready to be snatched at any moment in a snap of their jaws. But no more. From the moment she clears her throat, we learn this battle will be on Taylor’s terms. It is her fight to win.

This is the first love song she’s released and had complete artistic ownership of in three years. It is no coincidence then that there’s reference to the tortured passions of Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. They were a couple hopelessly and dangerously in love with many scars carved on their hearts by the other’s knife. This reference is a throwaway to the long list of ex lovers the girl who bathes in diamonds has had but also a reference to the flickers of hope Taylor feels for longevity no matter what with Joe. Their road may be complicated at times but they will get  there because the game is hers. The constant question of ready for it and in response baby let the games begin is so obviously a call of warning to Joe for what lies ahead but perhaps more subtly it is the call of Taylor’s inner voices and heart to her razor sharp self awareness. Is she ready for the games to begin? Is she ready to open her heart and give Joe a chance to be a better man?

TRACK 2: “END GAME” ft. Ed Sheeran & Future:

This song starts off with Taylor’s declaration that she wants to find a forever. It sounds sincere, gentle, wearied, the tone of the too often heartbroken. But then it shifts, it’s like the rose coloured glasses have come off and she’s reminded of her reputation. Then it’s all tongue in cheek sarcastic satire to keep the smile in place so that we don’t see how much it hurts. She has to weigh up every interaction in the context of her reputation. The addition of Ed & Future speaks volumes; one is a time trusted friend who has finally found a bright love of his own but that was not without heartbreak and the other gives her an edgier attitude that makes her self awareness all the more powerful.

There has been a further loss of innocence in this sharpening of her self awareness, gone are the wistful days of “say you’ll remember me”, that’s all I want. Now it’s all “I don’t wanna touch you, I don’t wanna be just another ex love you don’t wanna see.” She can see the fall right from the start but this time she opts out and says unless I’m your end game… because I don’t want to pick up any more pieces of my broken heart.

Also: Shoutout to Ed for his Cherry inspired verse. It made me feel many emotions too. SWEERAN THRIVES.

TRACK 3: “I DID SOMETHING BAD.”

The girl with the long list of ex lovers is back. However with the casually explicit twist, this narrative seems layered with perceptions and recognition of self-worth, “If a man talks shit, I owe him nothing.” This is drip-feeding the media exactly what they want, she’s stoking the fire herself. But in feeding the fire herself, she’s sending the burning embers back at them. Did you really think the girl who you used as an international rod for slut shaming would stay quiet forever? Nope. She doesn’t care if you burn her like a witch at the stake because she’s already done it. She’s burnt away all of the misplaced guilt and is now revelling in how good they felt in the moment. In fact, watch out she’s blazing with all the fire of a phoenix reborn and you might just get turned to ash.

TRACK 4: “DON’T BLAME ME.”

This & “I Did Something Bad” sound like sister tracks. The girl who jetsets around the world collecting men isn’t quite finished with her tale yet. She reminds us that defining her relationships by their headlines and paparazzi shots is a foolish move because those things are  one-dimensional. Taylor believes in love and this is her way of reminding us that there was love in every escapade of her heart up until now, at least at some point. She’s talking about the heady rushes head spinning intoxication of first glances and hands on skin and it doesn’t matter what the media says about the way she handles relationships because they forget love and that makes you crazy. Maybe in their minds the drug she refers to is not a singular identity but a collective “baby” and to them love will always be something she “uses”. But the heart wants what it wants and Taylor knows that so it doesn’t really matter.

TRACK 5: “DELICATE.”

This is the kind of song that happens when you cut the cord that is the boy crazy perception of yourself. You step back into the shadows and disappear so that they can’t find you. You close your heart, lock your doors and rebuild. And then he shows up. This is a cautionary songpp because Taylor can obviously feel sparks but… she’s just started to rebuild and if they find out the wolf hunt begins again. With delicate disbelieving vocals, we see Taylor start to realise that he can’t possibly want to gain anything from her reputation because it’s so bad… The wheels turn in her head. I imagine the realisation, “Wait so he must like me for me?” With the beat drop comes hope. Details are slowly given and then he stays. He doesn’t run so Taylor gives him pieces of herself; confessions thoughts and then her brain catches up with her mouth and the wheels come to a grinding halt: Her inner monologue screams it was too much too fast. We’ve all been there. It’s too delicate. No going back now. It’ll break and I’ll be left alone. Maybe one day I’ll find someone who doesn’t walk away, one day too.

TRACK 6: “LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO.”

The world tore a girl to shreds, made her play the fool on tilted stages. She retreated and rebuilt. Now the fool is dead. From here on out, she only trusts her army. With high heeled boots, red lips and words as sharp as daggers, she’s cutting herself a path. She is taking no prisoners and she’s accompanied by a savage snake because she and her army will always be better at the game. When she’s finished hunting down your asses, she’ll sit back on her throne with a high pitched giggle and say, “oh look what you made me do.”

TRACK 7:  “SO IT GOES…”

When people are watching, you have to be careful. Cover your tracks. Taylor doesn’t leave her heart open or on display anymore. But then they leave. The door shuts. You lock it with a key and the crashing chemistry you’ve been trying to deny slams into your ribs, knocking the breath out of you. It’s stolen kisses, careless touches, reckless chasing of the high. Body language is a fluency all its own. But a quick reminder before you unlock the door and venture out again; wash the lipstick off your face. *clears throat* you got a little caught up in the moment and you don’t want to blow your cover!

TRACK 8: “GORGEOUS.”

 The childish proclamation of the title to begin this next glimpse into Reputation  is hinting at the satirical inner monologue that this song is , reminiscent of the times you write your crush’s  last name instead of your own to see how it fits. It’s all giggles and late night phone calls, the kind Taylor most likely had with Abigail where they talked real slow because it was late and their mamas didn’t know (: However, it could also serve as a projection of the runaway daydream that fills Taylor’s mind from that very first night when she stumbles home alone to her cats, of what a possible future might look like (with kids one day) The lazy liquor loosened rhythms of Taylor’s thoughts tell us things she hasn’t admitted fully yet but will soon on nights at 4am staring at her reflection  in the bathroom mirror, telling herself the bravest thing she ever did was run - that this gorgeous  swoonworthy British boy with his careless touches and drawling accent has awakened the possibility of something better. This realisation rattles Taylor as she contemplates the gaps in her current relationship. *cue wistful sighs of frustration and enchantment, set to the dialogue of every teenage movie where the girl thinks the boy is just too good looking, how unfair is that?

TRACK 9: “GETAWAY CAR.”

The thing about any movie that has a getaway car scene is that they inevitably crash…. And that’s exactly what happens here. Except, the carnage is human hearts. She was running. There was a person she crashed into. It gets all blurred and tangled, she thinks she’s free but the thing about those movies is that the thing you ran from in the getaway car catches up to you particularly if there’s a track you can follow. Oceans of distance weren’t enough, darling. You needed to disappear. And I think she realises that  but she tries to pretend innocence and will the sunset closer. Unfortunately  the only real  way to untangle yourself is to disappear crying in the back of a getaway car in the dead of night. Without a word. That must have hurt a lot.

TRACK 10: “KING OF MY HEART.”

This song happens in tandem with Delicate. She’d sworn off love. Joe turned up. The British boy with the heart of gold who made his American queen believe. He made behind closed doors a paradise of rooftop nights. Before she knows it, he is every love story Taylor has ever daydreamed of. The line “is this the end to all the endings” made my heart swell because it’s clear Taylor hopes he’s the one. Please let there be no more heartbreak.

TRACK 11: “DANCING WITH OUR HANDS TIED.”

Dancing is supposed to be a joyous thing and maybe it was in the beginning. You can reassure with every beat. Sometimes your gut instinct shouldn’t be ignored though  because it does raise red flags. The door only needs to be fractionally ajar for the hunters to find a way in and set your paradise aflame. It sometimes doesn’t matter how much you dance to escape the flames, they will catch you. You will get tired. Dancing is a bliss that is euphoria swimmimg through your veins if the beat enters your bloodstream in the right moment; you feel like you could live forever. And in the end no matter how much it might hurt to walk away again, you would still dance for just another kick of that rush.

TRACK 12: “DRESS.”

Taylor’s caught up in the chemical rush. Every syllable drips with lust and the glory of the high when your hearts crash into each other, slamming the breath from between your ribs. It’s hands in hair and I don’t care what they think. It’s seeing the worst (hi bleachella) and still wanting. It’s realising you made mistakes before this and why didn’t you just do this from the beginning because it feels so good now you can’t ever have imagined wanting anything else. But every mistake is a marker in the roadmap and you woke up just in time to find where you needed to be.

TRACK 13: “THIS IS WHY WE CAN’T HAVE NICE THINGS.”

I think everyone’s been in this situation, right? Someone burns you and it hurts but in the fun of a party, you click and connect again and it all starts to feel like water under the bridge. Maybe there was over-reacting happening. You throw them a second chance. Redemption. You’re the nice girl and you make excuses. But then they do it again, maybe it takes a couple of things and suddenly it’s too much. You lock the gate for your own safety. But they still expect you not to care. To flash a smile and forgive. I’m sorry. That’s not happening. You get hurt when I push back. I guess I should forgive you because we both threw stones. But… that would require me to mean it. Whoops, *laughs manaically* I can’t even say it with a straight face!!!

PS: It’s not too obvious I have personal experience with this song is it? Thanks KS x.

TRACK 14: “CALL IT WHAT YOU WANT.”

This song is difficult for me to process because I never thought it would actually happen. I seem to remember somewhere along the way, a couple of years back, Taylor expressing frustration that she couldn’t seem to write happy songs about being in love like Ed Sheeran could. Well, I wish you could go back Taylor and tell yourself what you know now.

This song is a three minute ode to happy love. It’s smiles so wide you might split your face in half at the thought of that person. It’s blushing and shy giggles and bursts of song and twirls and all caps texts from your girls as they collectively lose their minds over how happy you are. This is every love story and fairytale Taylor has ever wanted but the wolves are always waiting, not so easy to outrun. 

Taylor says it herself in the  opening lines. She was done. The castle had crumbled. The bricks left bruises blooming on her exposed skin. People were tearing her down and she was hurting. Her heart had been shattered but so had her soul, again and again, relentlessly. And then she retreated, went silent and rebuilt. What she didn’t count on was love. A man who saw all the bruises and broken pieces and said it’s OK, I can still find the real you under all that. Taylor like so many of us looked in the mirror and saw all the danger for herself and for Joe, tried to push him away, keep him safe. That’s a very noble action but breaking your own heart so it doesn’t hurt as much when you feel like the other shoe is going to drop requires apathy from the other person. And Joe, god bless you, you didn’t let her push you away. You broke down her walls and showed you that starlight love does still exist. You loved her for Taylor. The person. You got her to give love a chance when she swore never again so thank you so much for that. I can’t really express how much that means to all of us. 

 This is an anthem of hope for every person who has ever been broken and is in the process of putting pieces back together. It can be done. We will find love. We will be radiantly happy again. We will be the strongest we’ve ever been. 

PS: *leans over to whisper in Taylor’s ear*

I think you’re finally clean…

TRACK 15: “NEW YEARS DAY.”

Piano on the final track… This is an ode of pure hope and happiness, a fitting final chapter to a remarkable story. Everyone wants the glory of the midnights and the lover who will be in their bloodstream like the party. But what we all hope for is someone who stays long enough to help us clean up the bottles on New Years Day. Someone who makes us feel like the messy unfiltered parts look like a highlight reel. Good times and bad times and all in between. They won’t leave. You found him. Forever.

This album is fucking brilliant Taylor. I love you. Proud x.

@taylorswift @taylornation @brian-mansfield

anonymous asked:

I don't know why, but for some reason I've always had the head canon that a little bit after petals to the metal Taako got sick. Mostly because their so freaking high up and it was turning to winter. How long do you think it would take for Magnus to notice all his sweaters are occupied by a shivering elf?

(There was a cold going around the base at that point so yes this is a quality headcanon, good work!)

It takes two passes through the main living room of the new apartment for Magnus to notice the pile of sweaters heaped on the couch. It takes a third pass before he realizes that at least one of those sweaters is his.

Upon closer inspection, all of the sweaters are his.

He figures he must have left one of his boxes in Merle or Taako’s room when they moved over here and this was their way of giving him his stuff back, but when he peels a sweater off the top of the stack to fold, a single elf ear pokes out. The rest of Taako’s head follows soon after, looking annoyed and flushed. “What the fuck, my dude,” Taako rasps.

Magnus stares while Taako’s head lists ever-so-slowly to one side. “You feeling okay, Taako?”

“I’m fine, fuck you.”

Taako is not fine. By that night his fever has gotten worryingly high and Merle and Magnus have replaced the sweaters with blankets. He hasn’t moved from the couch. Neither of them know how to take care of a sick elf, and Taako isn’t helping, choosing instead to ignore them as much as possible and bury himself under the blankets instead of answering questions or taking medicine. He makes some kind of annoyed, whining sound every time they try to talk to him.

It’s not until late that night while Magnus is absently carving a duck in the living room (too nervous to go to bed in case Taako needs anything) that he catches Taako watching him.

It’s a hazy stare, obviously unfocused, so the fever hasn’t broken yet. He’s watching Magnus’s hands move. “Wha’s that?” He almost sounds drunk.

“Carving a duck.” Magnus holds up the duck for emphasis. Taako’s gaze lifts a little and his eyes slide over the duck.

“Where’s Lup?” Taako’s voice is small and it sounds strange; Magnus isn’t used to Taako being anything but loud, ridiculous, and dramatic. His voice now sounds… more real, somehow, and Magnus is about to stand up and go looking before it registers that he doesn’t know who Taako wants.

“Who’s Lup?”

Taako thinks about that for a moment. “Not sure.” He glances around the room. His expression doesn’t change, but his ears droop a little. “Oh, right, she left.”

“She did?” But Taako is already burying himself in the blankets again.

The next morning, Taako’s fever has broken and when Magnus asks about their conversation, Taako laughs. “I don’t even remember saying that - must have been one hell of a dream. But hey, if you find a ‘Lup’ somewhere let me know, maybe she owes me some money or something.”

Magnus laughs, and promises that he will. He doesn’t know why, but something about the exchange feels wrong.

anonymous asked:

Hi! You seem to have become a sort of dinner consultant/therapist/cheerleader, which is delightful. I hope you don't mind if I ask a downer question--how do I will myself to make good food when I'm depressed, and feel deep down that I may not deserve proper nourishment? Than you, you're well.

I suffer from Depression, Bipolar, C-PTSD, ADHD and Memory Issues and yeah, I really get that feeling of not having the energy/focus/self-worth to make dinner.  I’m not a therapist or nutritionist, so all I can offer is things that have worked for me, and hope that some of them work for you:

It’s Better To Eat SOMETHING Than Nothing

No really.  There are a LOT of days when I’m too tired, too distractable or just too Blugh to cook.  And for days like that, I have microwave meals, or “put in pot and add water” things, like Mac N Cheese.  They’re not Organic, or Nutritionally Balanced but everything I’ve been told by every doctor and therapist I’ve had: EATING SOMETHING, EVEN MICROWAVE MAC OR CHIPS IS SO, SO MUCH BETTER FOR YOU THAN EATING NOTHING.

Food is not an all-or-nothing deal.  Humans have an amazing ability to take in nutrition from darn near anything that doesn’t kill us, which is part of the reason we’re all over the dang planet.  Any food is good food, esp when you haven’t eaten all day because your brain has been playing a shitty surrealist version of reality for you all day.

So when you CAN cook, cook, but if you can’t, don’t worry too much.  Just get something down your throat, and live to see the next, better, day.

Related: If you can’t do a full meal, but you CAN add *extras* to things to help you.  Tortilla Chips Depression meal? Add Salsa!  BAM! VEGETABLE SERVING!!  Can of beans? CHEESE.  OH LOOK, MORE PROTEIN.  whatever you can add is like, extra credit.  Good job you!

Actually Learning To Cook

So actually learning about food safety, spice theory, what happens chemically to food when you cook it and how to make different styles of cuisine confers a whole bunch of cool benefits for my sometimes-garbage brain:

  • I really like reading and learning new stuff, so making it a “learning a new thing” makes it less like a chore and more of an Interesting Distraction.
  • This doesn’t have to be any form of academically rigorous.  Like, watching cooking shows, looking up stuff online, or hell, googling stuff in the middle of the supermarket if something is on sale and you’re curious but don’t actually know what to do with it.   Good Eats and America’s Test Kitchen are both very educational and soothing to watch.
  • Also cooking shows are GREAT for both my anxiety and stimulating my appetite
  • Reduces the number of Thinking Spoons to actually make dinner.  If I have a general working knowledge of what things taste good and how to make them, it’s a lot less effort than trying to look up and follow a recipe.
  •   GO AHEAD AND USE SHORTCUTS.  No, really.  Those frozen cutlets of fish you stick in a toaster oven? GREAT.  pre-mixed seasoning? AWESOME. Frozen veggies are already cut up and are just as good as fresh.  Like if you don’t have the energy to do something, pre-made stuff is FANTASTIC for getting something healthy into your system for honestly not that much money or less in some cases.

Being Responsible For More Than Myself

The thing that has helped me take care of myself was getting engaged and a dog.  My mental illness has a neat shortcut where when I can’t do things for myself, I can magically do them for other people.  When I cook, I’m cooking for both myself and for my fiance.  Being responsible for making sure he eats a few nights a week is the biggest driving force in getting me to stay on enough of a schedule that I’ll be capable of cooking.  (He cooks other nights and whoever cooks, the other does the dishes.)

I realize that getting hitched is not in the cards for everyone and that’s hardly a reflection of one’s worth, but there are ways to add responsibility to your life if that helps with executive function.  Prior to meeting my fiance, My family had an elderly German shepherd with a sensitive stomach and I cooked him chicken and rice every night for three years on the vet’s recommendation.  Or maybe you cook for a neighbor once a week.  Or tie feeding your cat to you having dinner as well, becuase you can’t take care of fluffy if you’ve got low blood sugar, right?

Eating Is Self-Care, Like Taking Meds or Wearing Comfy Jammies

Another thing that helped me: Realizing that eating made me feel better.  Literally, if I keep my blood sugar stable (Prone to hypoglycemia), my mood’s better, I get fewer headaches, and so on.  What’s Healthy is different for everyone and I recommend talking to a nutritionist at least once to get an idea on what might be unique to you.  Most gyms, community centers or clinics will have someone on staff to help, but you should start by asking your GP for a recommendation.

So when I start too feel poorly, my checklist is “When was the last time I ate? Am I craving something?”  (Along with “Am I dehydrated?”  staying hydrated also helps with appetite issues) and I fin that I usually am.  Sometimes it’s salt, sometimes it’s a whole head of broccoli.  Food is our body’s main means of getting what it needs to survive and giving your body what it needs (even if it’s fat and sugar and carbs, which yes, you need sometimes) will make you feel better, I promise.

Eating Stuff You Actually Like 

Bananas are, allegedly, really good for me.  Potassium, vitamins, good fats etc.   They also taste like satan’s own diabetic mucus and I’m never gonna eat one if I can’t help it.  Just, No.  Don’t force yourself to eat things just becuase they’re healthy.  That’ll only make you hate eating.

Like I mentioned before, you, presumed human, can draw nutrition and calories from darn near anything.  So go boldly, and try new foods and spices and cooking methods and find things you actually enjoy eating.

  • Remember all those veggies you hated as a kid?  Try them again as an adult, because your taste buds literally change over time and things taste way less bitter than when you were a kid.  Try different cooking methods too- anything brassica is like 500% better tossed with olive oil, salt &pepper and roasted on a sheet pan. 
  • HOW you cook things makes a huge difference in both how they taste and how stressful cooking is.  Wanna leave something in a crock pot and forget about it until the timer goes off? AWESOME. Grilling becuase  you prefer something more engaging becuase you’re bored? ALSO GREAT.  Try out different cooking methids to find out what tastes good and is fun to do,
  • Are you one of those people that likes, 3 things, and can have them every night for eternity?  GO YOU, with your pre-planned menu!  Maybe call up a nutritionist to see if you need to be taking some extra vitamins, but really, this is fine too,

Ok this has gotten a mile long and kind of rambling but I hope it helps you!

I Don't Wanna Live Forever [Connor Murphy x Reader]

Title: I Don’t Wanna Live Forever
Pairing: Connor Murphy x Reader
Fandom: Dear Evan Hansen
Requested: no
Summary: Your family takes an annual trip to the mountains with the Murphy family every year to unwind over the winter break–that being said, Connor Murphy isn’t the sweet kid he used to be, and you’d rather be anywhere else than sharing a room with him for two weeks. However, between your parents, a line of accidents, and a mapless trip in the woods seem determined to bring you together–if you can make it out alive.
Warnings: Connor’s potty mouth | Mentions of drugs, abuse, alcohol, panic attacks, sex trafficking, sex, blood, hospitals | First person reader | face paced/vignette style | not proof read | tenses may change
A/N: Here’s that long ass thing I’ve been working on for weeks and just finished a few minutes ago, ayy. Based entirely off the “Connor hated skiing” line. This is long af with no read more option, sorry :/ Here we go! (THANKS FOR 500+ FOLLOWERS ♡♡♡)


Connor Murphy was a lot of things.

He was stubborn–I’d never seen him admit he was wrong, but I’d definitely seen him throw scrabble pieces across the wooden floor of the cabin, leaving Zoe to scramble red-faced to collect them as he stomped up the oak steps to his room, echoing around the house.

He was annoying–I’d told him once I wasn’t crazy about Iron Maiden, which resulted in the album being on blast for the entirety of the time he drove Zoe and I around the mall in the family’s silver minivan.

He was stoic. He was impatient. He was angry.

I’d begged my parents not to go cabins for winter break. I’d begged them to pick a different mountain range if we were so dead set on skiing. But Mr. Murphy and my mother were business associates, and the last thing she wanted to do was make them feel like we were no longer on good terms–especially because of Connor.

“Larry’s been having an awfully hard time with Connor, sweetheart, you have to understand,” my mother crooned in our rental car, fixing her lip liner as she drove, my father keeping a white knuckled grip on the Jesus handle above his head. “He’s not doing very well in school and he’s been throwing tantrums at home. Poor Cynthia is at her wits end. They’re lucky to have that sweet Zoe, she’s so talented and smart. Poor Connor is jealous and acting out, just try not to rally him up, alright, dear?”

I didn’t dignify her with a response, mostly because I knew she wouldn’t like what I had to say anyway, but also because I knew she wouldn’t care to listen, either. I sighed loudly, watching the snow flurry softly outside the window. It wasn’t fair–here I was in the middle of something so remarkably beautiful, and I’d be shoved in a minivan with the Murphy kids and stuck in the valley town’s 1970s mall with crappy t-shirts and a vape store that Connor would spend all day in.

The cabin was huge, up with a view of the town below, nearly three stories made of solid, stripped oak, in the middle of a winding road with a four percent grade. Half the cabin was supported on beams which plummeted down the mountain face. I’d be lucky to stand on the deck without vomiting, let alone being able to venture into the hot tub.

The Murphy’s minivan was already in the drive, trunk shut, meaning they’d unpacked and I’d be left with whatever miniscule space they’d left for me in the loft area.

“Remember to be nice, sweetheart,” my mother crooned again, fluffing her hair in the mirror and giving me an enthusiastic smile in the rearview. “It’s important! They’re practically family.”

Geez, I was lucky to not have Connor Murphy for a cousin.

Slinging my backpack over my arm and exiting the rental car, I took the liberty to stretch, despite the cold air that stung my cheeks and the snow that fluttered down into my hair. This may very well be the last moment of solitude I had for the entirety of the week, and I was going to revel in it.

A movement caught my eye, suddenly, and I lowered myself off my tiptoes to glance up at the second story window–a curtain fluttered shut. It was most likely Zoe or Connor checking out the commotion that was my father and mother bickering over who carried what into the house, and shutting it once they’d realized I caught them. Feeling vaguely uneasy, I turned just as Larry Murphy, bundled in a parka, burst out of the house to take two suitcases from my father.

It was going to be a long two weeks.

——

Cynthia Murphy made me stand by the kitchen counter as she was stocking the cabinet with neon colored cardboard boxes containing various sugary, pink cereals with marshmallows and prizes inside. The Murphy kids were both picky eaters, I remembered quickly, Connor more so than Zoe.

Mrs. Murphy kept playing with my hair, crowing about how much longer it looked (despite the fact I’d cut it since the last time I’d seen her) and how pretty and grown up I’d become, asking me the usually annoying adult questions (“Any thoughts on schools yet? Oh, Connor can’t decide either! Do you know what you’re going to major in? That’s alright, you’ll figure it out soon!”) It would’ve been annoying, I decided, if and only if she didn’t look so sad all the time, the purple bruising under her eyes visible still underneath the layers of makeup. My mother could say whatever she liked about Cynthia Murphy where her wifely duties were concerned–Mrs. Murphy tried to be a good mother (re: tried, period), and that was more than enough to pass her in my book.

In the background, my parents were settling into the second master bedroom, Larry Murphy yelling at the bottom of the stairs to announce our arrival. I could do without the annual reunion, awkward questions about school. The Murphy kids were tolerable–Zoe definitely more so–but it didn’t mean they had to force us together so artificially.

Zoe skimpered down the stairs first, her soft moccasin boots barely making any sound on the stairs–I was surprised to find her long legs bare, her thighs peeking out beneath a pretty pink chiffon dress, covered by what I hoped to be a faux fur parka. Her pretty auburn hair was curled, pulled back with a polka dot headband I could recognize from her childhood. She was wearing eyeliner, and cotton candy flavored lip gloss I remembered sharing when we were thirteen.

It was such a stark contrast from how I remembered her before. The last I’d seen her she’d been gawky and fifteen with a mouth full of metal and a bra full of kleenex. She was practically grown now, and beautiful–it made me feel slightly subpar in my own blue jeans and blue sweater. Regardless, she smiled brightly and skipped over to me, opening her arms to wrap them around my neck.

“It’s so good to see you!” She exclaimed, pressing a quick kiss to my cheek that shocked me, as well as some others–Larry Murphy’s horrified expression was priceless, and I was convinced Connor put her up to it–but I just laughed and hugged her tightly before letting her go.

“You look so pretty,” I told her with a wry grin, and she just tossed the expression back, nodding with a, “So do you!”

“It’s so good to see you girls are still so close,” my mother tittered, beginning to uncork a glass of wine–we didn’t drink much at my house, but the Murphy’s, I knew, did, and my mother certainly wasn’t going to let that go to waste. “Where’s that sweet boy of yours?”

Larry Murphy at the bottom of the stairs, banging on the oak walls, yelling out, “Connor!” was enough to make both the Murphy women flinch visibly. Zoe still had her arm around my waist as we stared up at the ceiling above us, waiting for the squeak of sneakers on the polished wood.

“Don’t yell.”

Zoe jumped away from me as if she’d been burned, pressing herself against the countertop as if to make herself invisible. Mrs. Murphy, her hand clutched to her chest after the initial nose, fought hard to smile believably. I, myself, had jumped at the unexpected sound–Connor Murphy’s curt tenor clear across the room, no where near the stairs, instead standing the doorway were we had just come from. I couldn't  quite make out his frame from here–there was a line of bodies blocking my view, my parents, Mrs. Murphy, and Zoe all formed a human barrier that constructed the divide between Connor and I. Fine by me.

“There you are!” Mrs. Murphy chirped, clearly still nervous, visibly by her shaking voice and hands, fluffing her hair to give her something to do. “You didn’t miss much, Connor, they’ve just arrived.”

My mother said something unintelligent in way of greeting, to which Conner didn’t reply, just shut the door carefully behind him to keep out the cold air. I couldn’t see his face from here, but I could make out that he was much too still for a teenage boy, much too quiet.

“–You remember her, don’t you, Connor?”

My throat closed up as the Red Sea parted, everyone’s heads turning to look between the two of us.

He didn’t move from the doormat–boots  caked in snow, as if he’d gone for a walk, and the bottoms of his skinny jeans were muddy and slick looking. Still, he didn’t shiver, which was slightly unnerving. He was skinnier than I remembered, like he hadn’t been eating, and his face was all angles. He slouched, his pink mouth which was mottled red from the cold was set in a heavy frown. His eyes, which were scanning somewhere around my waist and hadn’t come anywhere near making eye contact since he’d seen me, had blown pupils. Drugs. He was doing drugs in the middle of the afternoon.

He hadn’t cut his hair since I’d seen him last, brown curls poking out of the bottom of a black sock toboggan with a soft pompom on top. It could’ve been funny, I supposed, his rough puberty finishing to leave him left over with this, something akin to a drugged out vogue model who listened to way too much 2008 Fall Out Boy, if he didn’t seem so…unnervingly somber for someone who clearly wasn’t sober. Geez, this kid was a school shooter in the making.

I glanced back up to find him finally staring at my face, shooting an uncomfortable alertness down my spine. His eyebrows were crooked in vague amusement that didn’t seem to reach his mouth, and I felt my face heat up under his scrutiny. If he was trying to intimidate me, it wouldn’t work. I wasn’t scared of boys like him.

“Yeah, I remember her,” he grinned mirthlessly, stuffing his hands into the gut pocket of his hoodie, giving me a nod that, while meant to appease our parents, also felt like a vague threat. I didn’t smile back.

“Great! Wanna show her the room?”

Connor grinned crookedly. “Follow me, kid.”

——

The upstairs layout was just like I remembered  it–Two rooms, one main one in the first entrance with a king bed tucked in the corner, a TV and a few gaming systems with some furniture in the front, a bathroom with two doors which lead through to the other room, which held the fold out couch and television I was accustomed to using.

The Murphy kids already had their belongs strewn about the room–Zoe’s stuff animals and princess blankets eclipsing most of the bed and an ancient Nintendo DS on the table with SpongeBob stickers on the cover that I’m sure belonged to Connor–and it left me very little room to maneuver through.

Connor was silent as he lead me up, as if I didn’t know the way, but surprised me by stopping in front of the king bed, holding out his arms to signal me.

“Your room, my lady.”

I cocked an eyebrow. “This–this is your bed.”

“Not this year. Dad’s decided it’s a little too Flowers In the Attic for Zoe and I to share a bed this year–I’m on the pull out and you girls get to have your fun.” He shot me a bitter smile to let me know he wasn’t thrilled about having the pull-out–he shouldn’t be, the thing was total garbage–but surely he’d enjoy the privacy of it?

“I don’t care to take the pull-out,” I told him, keeping my bag on my shoulder despite the fact it was beginning to be painfully heavy. “If you wanna–”

“Don’t have a choice,” he said, already turning toward the bathroom to walk to his half of the loft. “The bed’s yours.”

——

So, Connor Murphy had turned out to be a total dick. It should’ve unsurprising information, I knew, but part of me still remembered him as a charismatic kid I was, at one point, friends with. Back when the three of us all slept in the king bed, before any of us ever had a zit, when we’d fall asleep in the floor watching early 1990s Pokémon episodes, because Larry Murphy didn’t like them watching it.

Even the Connor I remembered at fourteen, gangly and silent and shy with close-cropped hair felt better than this. I was past uncomfortable, sitting stiffly between he and Zoe on one of the couches in the living room. There was a faux fur blanket hanging behind us, shedding hairs onto Connor’s black jacket, which would’ve been funny if he wasn’t picking at his nails with a slightly rusted pocket knife–I notice he’d painted them, which I oddly admired. I’d kissed a boy earlier this year who painted his nails, and his palms were always soft when he’d reach up to cup my cheeks. It softened Connor in my head, just slightly.

He was careful, I saw, to stay on his side of the couch, leaning into the apex of the arm and the back of the couch rather  than flush with me, his thin legs stretched out and crossed at the ankle to avoid me. I appreciated it, but it didn’t stop me from leaning forward, my elbows on my knees, sitting on the edge of the cushion. I could still feel warmth radiating from him–it was late, and I was tired with a full stomach. If I wasn’t careful, I’d fall right into him, and he’d never let me live that down.

Zoe practically was asleep, leaning forward as well with her head on my shoulder. Cynthia had let her have nearly two glasses of wine at dinner–not enough to get her drunk, but it didn’t change the fact Zoe was still lithe and young, and easily tipsy.

We’d all gone into town for a very awkward dinner–I was just thankful to be placed between my father and Zoe, in a position on the opposite end of the table from Connor, who was stuck in between Larry and Cynthia, looking as if he were in a permanent time out.

Now we were gathered around the coffee table in the cabin, the seven of us hunched over a tiny photo album that I couldn’t really make out from here. There were fuzzy polaroids of us as children, looking nothing like we did now. Connor and I at six, soaked from romping in a sprinkler. Zoe and Connor sharing a chocolate icecream cone, their faces covered in the brown spatter.

“You were all so small,” Mrs. Murphy crowed with a choked voice, covering half her face with her hand in a faux attempt to eclipse the emotion. “Oh, I miss it. You kids used to spend so much time together! Now we only get together for break, and Zoe is so busy there’s hardly enough time for her to spend quality time with her sweet brother.”

Zoe snorted loudly, earning a glare from Mr. Murphy I was positive I wasn’t supposed to see. I snuck a glance at Connor, whose face betrayed no emotion, just staring blankly ahead in the direction of the album. From his position, I was positive he couldn’t see more than the chipped leather cover of the book. Even if he leaned forward, he wouldn’t have been able to see much.

My mother and Mrs. Murphy went out in loud voices in a seamless attempt to pretend the seemingly secret interaction had taken place, so, while the focus was shifted, I turned my attention to Connor.

He didn’t cock an eyebrow this time when he caught me staring, instead just furrowed his eyebrows and looked at me, as if he expected me to speak.

“Can you see?” I asked, nodding my head in the direction of the book.

“I’m fine,” he said immediately–vaguely irritating, I’d admit, but nonetheless understandable. I was sure Cynthia Murphy had spent most of her life making sure Connor was comfortable at all times. Still, this was my olive branch, in an attempt to make this trip a little more tolerable, and Zoe seemed less than likely to console her brother at this point.

“We can change seats, I’m not really looking,” I promised, sitting forward more in my seat to show that I was ready to make the change.

“I’m fi–”

Connor was cut off by a squeal from his mother, who had tossed the book into our laps. It had taken a great deal of squinting, letting my heartbeat slow before I realized she’d been showing us something and not trying to kill some giant bug between us.

The polaroid was grainy, an ivory hue that whitewashed the photo and the years of existence made the picture hard to decipher at first, especially when we were so tired. The time stamp was from the late nineties, glowing yellow in the corner of the frame. I recognized the gilded tub from upstairs that dominated half the bathroom, big enough for three adults easily.

Connor threw to book onto my lap first, like it had scalded him. I should’ve done the same, but it took me a moment. To see, to adjust, to read and understand what was so socially condemning about the photo.

It was Connor, I realized first, small and tanned with bony ribs and chunky fingers and the apples of his cheeks straining against his baby skin. His hair was cropped so short, it looked almost silly. Beside him was me, my hair wild and tangled, curled as if my mother had teased it for dinner. My wide eyes were blazing, much too big for my face, and I was grinning with wet lips at the camera.

We were in the tub, surrounded by big pink bubbles.

We were very, very naked.

It shouldn’t have been a big deal–not really, unless you counted the fact that if this had been printed, our parents would be arrested for child porn. I was mostly covered, sitting beside Connor, my shoulders hunched forward. But Connor was standing, meaning the camera got a very decent view of–

“What the fuck, Mom!” He screaming, standing and ripping the book off my lap. Cynthia’s tittering died immediately, the hands covering her laughed instead covered her horrified face.

This was how it started, I realized.

“It’s not fucking funny,” he growled, tossing the book across the room, banging against the wooden wall with a heavy whomp.  

“That’s enough, Connor,” Larry Murphy growled low in his throat. Cynthia’s head was downcast, her eyes wide and wet. I recognized the emotion immediately–she shut down with conflict the same way Connor did.

“You don’t get to laugh at me for shits and giggles this whole trip,” Connor said, already lunging up the stairs, his hands shaking. “If I wanted to feel shitty, I’d have a conversation with you.”

So much for having a quiet trip.
——
Zoe wasn’t quiet in her gossip about Connor–his door was fashioned shut, I saw, and I doubt he’d come out for the rest of the night. I was positive he could hear his sister’s loud comments from our room.

“Sorry, he’s such an ass,” Zoe groaned, stretching on the bed, her little lilac nightgown shifting across her thighs. “I think his high is wearing off or something–don’t let it bug you. You don’t have to be nice to him, by the way. I’m not gonna let him hurt you.”

I shrugged, noncommittal. “We were friends once. I’m not gonna be mean, he’s never done anything to me.”

Zoe snorted. “You didn’t just see that? He’s a monster, and it gets worse.”

“He just has a temper. Everyone gets like that sometimes.”

I wasn’t sure why I was defending Connor–half because I didn’t want Zoe to tell Connor I disliked him, then he’d actively terrorize me–half because I had no idea why Connor Murphy was so pissed off. It was just a picture. Yeah, embarrassing, I’ll admit I wasn’t too thrilled about eighteen year old Connor Murphy seeing my nipples, and I’ll admit he definitely had the worst end of the stick.

“He loses his shit like that all the time,” Zoe said. “It’s not just a temper.”

“He’s your brother, Zoe,” I reminded gently, brushing out my hair in the bathroom mirror. “Can’t you give him the benefit of the doubt?”

“He’s no brother of mine,” she whispered, rolling over on the bed and clicking off the light.

——

The next few days passed as the usually did–the adults going places without us, albeit romantic and boring, and leaving the three of us to wander about the town below the mountain crests. It was Zoe’s turn to pick the day’s activity, and she’d chosen the mall.

The place was all dark oak, and hadn’t been remodeled since the late seventies at the earliest. Zoe was chipper, balancing a bag of organic soap and bath bombs on her lap that she’d bought at a local shop, pouring over the cheese fries between us on a plastic red tray.

Connor had also been well-behaved since his outburst several days ago, albeit quiet. He’d separated from us the second we’d arrived, holed out in some record store. Zoe was thrilled to be rid of him, and very vocal about it. I was bored out of my mind.

“Don’t look now,” Zoe said brightly, despite her face suddenly shifting into a mask of disinterest. She bit down on her lip, covered in a pink glitter lipgloss she’d applied much too liberally, and pulled on her pretty auburn braid. “There’s some boys two tables behind us checking you out.”

I felt my face get hot. “You’re lying.”

“Nuh-uh,” Zoe said, leaning into take a sip of her milkshake, biting down on the straw–the look on her face told me she’d got their attention.

“How old are they?” I hissed. The last thing we needed were some creeps following us around the mall–this was how sex trafficking started. Surely Zoe knew that this was a huge red flag.

It was clear from her overzealous wave she didn’t.

I felt a hand on the back of my chair before I saw them–to Zoe’s credit, they were pretty. Both in thick denim blue jeans, both in letterman jackets over white tee-shirts. One was tall, skinny, with pretty dark skin and hair cropped close to his head. The other was a little thicker, pale and short, in badly need from a shave. They were smiling brightly at the two of us in a way that was less awestruck and more closely resembled a triumphant conquest.

“Hello, ladies,” the shorter man greeted, grinning like a shark between Zoe and I. His hair was dark, curling around his temples–handsome, maybe my age, maybe ten years older. It was impossible to tell. There were lines around his eyes that either indicated he smiled too much or was simply older. “What are two cute girls like you doing inside on a day like this–the ski lift is just a walk down the road.”

“We’re here shopping with our brother,” I said immediately, giving a grin. The taller boy quirked his eyebrows at me–his eyes, I noticed, were dark with tawny flecks hidden in them.

“That’s cool,” he said to me, switching places so that the other boy could be closer to Zoe. They both pulled chairs up to our table, facing us. My stomach pinched uncomfortably. “Where’s he at?”

“Nike,” I lied, seeing the sign from the distance and knowing very well that Hot Topic, while probably true, didn’t exactly invoke fear.

“Ah,” he said with a grin, his eyes glancing down at my bare arm with a grin. With two slim fingers, he reached forward to pluck at my woven bracelet Zoe had made me a few nights ago, my name in block letter strung across the twine. His hands were uncomfortably hot, and I drew my arm back into my lap. “Aren’t you cold?” He nodded to my bare arms. I’d left my flannel with Connor, who was sitting on a bench at the time–I hoped he remembered to grab it. I was just wearing a striped cotton tee right now, and my arm had broken out in a case of goosebumps, though I wasn’t sure it was from the cold.

“I’m fine,” I said, careful not to meet his gaze. He was pretty, and if I wasn’t careful, I might end up going somewhere with this guy.

“You know,” he began, and I could hear his grin turn predatory. “You’re very pretty.”

A jolt shot down my spine–I wasn’t pretty, not really, which terrified me. I could hear what the other boy was whispering to Zoe, but I could tell that all the stars were gone from her eyes. She looked pale, panicked. These weren’t the kind of boys we needed to hanging around with.

“I know,” I said quickly. “We really need to call our brother–”

“I think he can wait long enough for me to get your number, right?”

Across the table Zoe laughed, too loudly, pushing back and standing from her chair. She was grinning at the dark haired boy, beckoning her to follow with a jerk of her chin.

“Zoe–”

“We’re gonna run to get some coffee, okay? Connor should be back soon, don’t wait up.”

She didn’t meet my heavy glare for long, and didn’t turn around when I yelled her name. I watched in silent horror as the boy put his hand flush with her lower back.

I was alone.

The panic crept onto the back of my neck long before his thin fingers did. He smelled like cinnamon, strongly, like he’d done one too many sprays with his cologne that morning. When I turned to face him, his tawny eyes were asking.

“Is this the part where you say you’ve got a boyfriend?” He grinned, his teeth blindingly bright in his tan face. He was so close I could see the threads on the collar of his letterman jacket–it looked soft.

There was a possibility, I realized, that they weren’t dangerous. That I was just being paranoid–Zoe wasn’t stupid, and she wouldn’t go off with a strange boy unless she was sure it was safe. Still, they were definitely in college.

And boy, were they pretty.

“I do have a boyfriend, actually,” I said, lifting my chin to meet his gaze so he wouldn’t think I was lying. There was a small voice in the back of my head, screaming, raised on her tip toes that I should just take this plunge–let him hold my hand or kiss him or whatever he wanted to do, because this was a shitty trip and I deserved to be as reckless as the Murphy kids were allowed. I didn’t see a reason why I shouldn’t.

Besides, you know, the obvious.

He quirked an eyebrow. “You have a boyfriend?” He asked, biting back a smirk. I felt the voice in the back of my head get sucker punched by my ego. So, he didn’t think I was pretty after all. Which meant he was dangerous.

Which meant Zoe was in trouble.

“Yes,” I growled, standing, yelping a bit when his hand snaked up to grab at my wrist, nearly breaking my bracelet and keeping me bent over the table.

“Let go,” I hissed–the food court was nearly deserted, and the family in the corner was carefully avoiding my eyes. I wasn’t sure I had the voice to scream.

“I don’t believe you have a boyfriend.”

“Let go, or I’ll scream,” I warned, yanking on my arm. He let go immediately, holding his hand high above his head, which I knew was meant as a gesture of calm, but instead looked an awful lot like he intended to strike me.

“Where’s your boyfriend, then?” He taunted loudly, thrilled to see no one in the court coming to my aid. I felt sick, the panic rising in my chest. Where was Zoe? She was in trouble. I was in trouble. I was going to have to scream–

“He’s right here.”

My arm flailed, immediately cocking back in an attempt to elbow in the stomach whoever had wrapped their arm around my neck, their other spidery hand snaking just slightly under the hem of my t-shirt to splay across my hip, finger tips barely brushing my skin above my jeans. The arms were strong, vice like, pressing me against a hard body, and suddenly I felt limp, panic leaving me as I realized whose familiar smell I was enveloped in.

Hair grazed across my cheekbone, and I could make out the dark locks if I looked out the corner of my eye, and I nearly yelped when I felt lips press chastely against my temple.

I couldn’t make out much of the boy anymore, my eyes level with Connor’s adams apple from where he was pressing me against him.

“Babe,” Connor said cooly, calmly, making my knees knock against his. “Who’s this?”

“H-he’s leaving,” I managed to stutter out, barely a whisper, my voice hoarse. I sounded terrified. No wonder this ass in the letterman jacket hadn’t be intimated by me, I sounded about as frightening as a kitten. Connor pressed his fingers against the nape of my neck, tilting my head against his jugular so that I couldn’t see anything but the pale column of his throat and his dark hair. It was getting difficult to breathe–I felt sick. He moved his hand to wrap around my waist, yanking me tightly to him.

“You heard her,” Connor said, again stoic–half of me wished I could see his face, but the other half knew it would be terrifying. Connor’s temper was legendary and destructive–to see him so angry wouldn’t make the fist in my gut unclench. “Go. Take your friend with you.”

There was a beat of silence. Then two. I couldn’t hear much but my own shaky breathing, warm and wet against Connor’s neck, his hair making the space much too hot. I wasn’t aware I had knotted my fingers into his shirt until he started walking, dragging my stumbling form forward with him. He was going fast, too fast for me to keep up, and my chest could only rise so far before deflating painfully.

“You gotta breathe,” he grunted, one of his arms still around me. His face felt hot against me.

“Z-zoe!” I choked out, realizing I had no idea where she was. She could still be with that boy, be in danger–

“Oh, Christ,” he exclaimed bitterly, letting go and beginning to trudge forward. I was terrified briefly, suddenly overwhelmed with the fact I didn’t know where I was. There was a Game Stop, and a Victoria’s secret, the neon lighting combined with the screaming toddlers and the kissing teens and Connor was leaving

An arm swept up from behind me, leading me just as quickly, mumbling something I couldn’t make out into my ear.

“Zoe!” I grinned, immediately feeling safer, feeling my fear melt away just smidgen in my gut.

“I’m so so sorry I left,” she sobbed. “I went looking for a cop, but I found Connor first and I told him you were in trouble–”

“It’s fine,” I said immediately, surprised that my voice was no longer wet. “Thanks, Zoe.”

I was calm, or, at least calmer by the time we reached the van. Connor was waiting by the passenger side door, which was opened, leaning against a scratch in the silver paint. He wasn’t looking at us, instead appearing to observe the silver snowflakes as they fell.

My reflection in the side mirror revealed my face was red and blotchy, not just from the cold wind. I felt gross–guilty for the fact I hadn’t been able to defend myself and Zoe, guilty for the fact Connor Murphy was the one who had to come to my rescue, and guilty for the fact I’d cried all over him. His zipped up hoodie seemed to have escaped the mess, but that didn’t mean I didn’t feel awful. 

He stepped out of the way when I made it close, gesturing for me to get in the passenger side door while glaring at the ground. I was only vaguely surprised, and followed along immediately. Zoe and I almost always rode together in the back. I let Connor shut the door, ignoring the disgusted look Zoe gave as she got into the back.

Connor hoisted himself into the driver’s seat, surprising me with a costume change, reappearing in only a forest green tee. He held out his hoodie to me, balled up in one of his fists without looking at me, before just tossing it into my lap.

“I–”

“I left your flannel in the back. Put that on or you’ll freeze.”

He licked his lips, staring coldly out the front window, before starting the car. I swallowed. Yeah, he definitely hated me.

“Okay.”

——

“You’re sure you’re alright, honey?” My mother asked for the third time. Her hair was tied up, her pink bathrobe covering little of her cleavage and bare legs. She was cradling a wine bottle in her hands, looking at me in faux concern.

I gave her a soft smile. “I’m fine,” I lied. I’d calmed considerately. Connor and Zoe had both agreed I needed to shower to wash off the panicked look on my face–I’d asked them to keep the days happenings a secret. They’d reluctantly agreed.

She gave me a clipped smile. “Maybe you should go to bed early, yeah? That’s what I plan to do.”

I nodded, scratching at my bare leg. I’d taken advantage of Zoe’s absense and changed into boxer shorts and an oversized tee with a kitten on the front–she and Cynthia had headed into town for the night, spending the night at a spa and would be gone for a few days, and my father had taken his annual ‘me time’ and booked a hotel downtown to do his own thing. I think Mr. Murphy went with him, but regardless, he was out of the house. It was just me and my mother.

And Connor. I tried not to think about it. I planned on offering him the big bed tonight, in way of thanking him for today, but we hadn’t spoken much since the incident and I felt…odd. Unsure how to thank him. Unsure why he helped.

I supposed the Murphy men were just gentlemen, even under all that teen angst.

“Yeah,” I agreed. “I’m probably gonna sit out on the balcony and then head to bed.”

She grinned. “Don’t stay out too late, it’s almost down to single digits, dear.”

I just nodded, sliding off the countertop, and slinking upstairs. I was surprised to see Connor sitting on the bed. I grinned.

He looked different, to say the least. He was still without his jacket, wearing only his tee and jeans, and little pair of socks with stars on them, which did seem a little out of character, but I assumed Cynthia bought them. His head perked when he saw me, simply craning his neck, keeping his shoulders bowed forward over his body.

He looked small, I realized. He didn’t look like a boy who punched holes in walls or scared off very big very scary men in shopping mall food courts. He looked like a vogue model with a little too much innocence.

He gave me a grin with no teeth, and it didn’t quite meet his eyes, but I gave him a sheepish smile back.

“Hey,” I greeted, tugging on my top to cover my shorts a little better–Connor Murphy didn’t have any interest in seeing my thighs. Despite all the panic, I’d been playing over and over in my head the comment the boy in the mall had made, incredulous that I had a boyfriend. It was silly to let it sting me, considering he probably wanted to stuff me in a van, but it crippled me nonetheless.

“Hey,” he greeted back, not rising from the bed.  I waited for him to speak again, and when he said nothing, I continued.

“I, uh, meant to say, since Zoe’s gone, you can have the big bed like good old times.”

He frowned. “I don’t need the bed.”

“I don’t either,” I promised, leaning against the banister. “Plus,” I sighed, scratching at the back of my head. “I’m not entirely sure how to thank you for today. I’d probably be selling for a low ball price on the dark web right now, if it wasn’t for you. So, thanks.”

Connor was still frowning. “You’ve had a really rough day. You should take the bed.”

“No,” I insisted, beginning to get frustrated. “I’m really okay, I promise. I can’t give you anything else, take the bed.”

His dark eyebrows knit together quickly, licking his lips again nervously. “I don’t–”

“Plus,” I cut him off again with a curt laugh. “I owe you for your Oscar performance. That was crazy, you know. I can’t believe you fooled him into thinking a guy like you would be with a girl like me.”

His head snapped up. “A guy like me?” He reiterated coldly. I felt my face grow hot.

“You know,” I said quietly.

“Know what?”

“That you’re cool,” I muttered. “And nice looking. And I’m not.”

I was thankful for the warm lighting in the room, concealing my red face. It was already dark out, the blinds drawn tightly. Connor’s fists clenched in the white lace comforter on the bed. I didn’t want him to feel bad for me, and I sort of regretted saying it. Connor had already seen me blubbering today and he didn’t need my shitty teen angst to deal with.

He bit down on his lower lip, staring coldly at the ground before murmuring, “I need a shower. Take the bed.”

I shook my head. “I’m gonna go for a walk.”

He just nodded, rising from the bed. “Don’t get too far. It’s cold out.”

Connor shut the bathroom door behind him, and I was left feeling like a total idiot. I could hear the shower running before I left, snagging Connor’s grey jacket from my bed post and sliding it on. I went down the stairs, sliding out the first door to the outside, stepping out onto the first floor balcony. I made a mental note to the shut the blinds later, before walking around to the front of the cabin.

I should’ve been thrilled to be alive, I realized, snorting at how melodramatic that sounded. Still, as I burrowed deeper into Connor’s jacket, watching my thighs turn red from the cold, I realized that I was shrouded in a veil of melancholy I wouldn’t be able to shake off.

I missed Connor. I missed being his friend. I missed him coming over for play dates when we were kids, gauzy fairy wings strapped to our backs, jumping on a trampoline when Zoe was still to young to participate. I missed writing him letters, like a pen pal, despite the fact he only lived on the opposite side of town. Going to different schools hadn’t deterred us, for a while, at least. We had sleepovers every birthday, and Zoe told the best scary stories. I remembered hiding under Connor’s bed with him, a hand clasped over my mouth so Zoe wouldn’t hear our breathing.

I remembered kissing him when we were in kindergarten, ridiculously late at night, a quick smack on the lips during a game of pretend. I’d kissed Zoe, too, when we were probably much too old for it, but thinking of Connor tugged on my chest.

It stopped as we turned twelve, I realized. I never saw him–he was still playing little league, and I stopped coming to his games to pick dandelions with Zoe. He was beginning to get teased. My parents insisted the slumber parties should stop, we were too old. Every time Connor and I were together at birthdays or Christmas parties, adults would joke about when we’d fall in love, how soon would it be before we got married. We avoided each other like the plague, unless we knew we could be alone. And we were never alone.

Connor hid inside himself. Zoe made fun of him at parties, loudly. I kept quiet.

He stopped calling during the summer months. He never rode his bike by my house. The only time I saw Connor Murphy was the annual ski trip.

I missed him. He’d been a childhood friend, and I’d let him go without a second thought to save myself some shred of dignity, like it wouldn’t be ripped away from me regardless.

Connor Murphy was nothing to be ashamed of.

And now it was too late to be his friend.

It had started to snow again, so I wiped my face and rose, walking the opposite way I had come, skirting the stairs–they led to the upstairs, but only to Connor’s room, and I didn’t plan to barge in uninvited, especially if he was still in the shower, two rooms blocked me from getting to the king bed, so I’d have to walk all the way around the house.

The lights were out, I saw, but again no one had bothered to close the blinds. The television might have been on, a dim blue glow resounding onto the leather couch–

I froze.

As it turned out, my mother hadn’t gone to bed. The television was on, showing some late show with some old white man making cracks about some politician I didn’t care for, casting the blue haze onto the coffee table, revealing the wine bottle my mother had been cradling. Two empty glasses sat on the table–my mother’s bathrobe crinkled on the floor.

I was disgusted in a comedic way, just for a moment, to see my mother in her nightgown kissing my father, who my brain had filled in under the assumption he’d arrived back.

I’d begun backing up to the stairs, Connor Murphy’s naked body be damned, when I realized my father’s car had never pulled up, and I’d been on the front porch the whole time.

A better look in the window revealed a man a little older, a little more gray and a little more handsome than my father.

I was sprinting by the time Larry Murphy had begun to peel his shirt off his back.

I didn’t knock by the time I’d made it to Connor’s room, just threw open the door, struggling to get my breathing under control. I stumbled to the pull out couch, dragging the sheets up around my freezing legs. I was in shock, I knew, and I needed to calm down before Connor came in–the bathroom door was shut, but I couldn’t hear the shower anymore, despite the steady trickle of steam coming through the cracks. I was trapped in this room until Connor came out.

My mother was cheating on my father Larry Murphy. Larry Murphy was cheating on his wife with my mother. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t believe it, I had to have made it up, this had to be a dream–

“What are you doing in here?”

It was an exclamation, alarmed, grasping a towel tight with thin white knuckles.

Connor. Connor in a towel. Connor wet with slick hair and chest hair and navel and hip bones. Connor Murphy, son of Larry Murphy, who had his tongue down my mom’s throat–

“Hey, breathe, what’s going on? What’s wrong?”

By the time my eyes snapped back into focus, Connor was struggling to pull on grey basketball shorts without dropping his towel, and I dropped my gaze back to my shaking hands, almost startlingly red from the temperature change and what was most likely shock. I was hyperventilating, struggling to smother the sobs. I knew this deep in the house, they probably wouldn’t hear me–they were most definitely preoccupied anyway. 

The bed dipped, and Connor’s bare side brushed my thigh. I didn’t mean to jerk back, but I did, clinging to the arm of the couch and staring horrified–Connor looked almost hurt, but mostly panicked. I tried to calm down, for his sake.

“S-sorry!” I sobbed. “Sorry! I-I-I didn’t mean–I didn’t mean–I didn’t–I–”

“Hey, stop, breathe. You gotta breathe. Go slow, okay? Stop tryna talk,” he commanded, holding up his hands to show he wasn’t gonna hurt me, readjusting so that he sat up on his knees, leaning  over me to take my hands, rubbing them between his own despite the claminess.

I avoided his eyes, focusing instead on the dip of his collar bone, surprised to see thin lines of chest hair, wet and plastered to his chest. He was skinny, and I could see his ribs despite the tiny stomach roll from where he folded in the middle. His thumbs rubbed soothing circles across the backs of my hands, and for a moment, I didn’t think. I could’ve forgotten everything and fallen asleep right here with him.

He pulled my hands against his chest, cradling mine in his own, pulling me forward, asking with his slate eyes if it was alright.

I pretended we were friends.

“You wanna talk about that?” He asked very softly, looking down at where our hands were clasped against him–he was warm, his skin pink and hot from the shower. He’d combed his hair back out of his face, and it was almost cute like that. “If it’s about today, I promise you’re safe, alright? I wasn’t gonna let that guy hurt you.”

My heart sunk in my chest, nearly restarting my panic attack. I shook my head.

Connor deserved to know.

I was scared, briefly, that it would set him off. He might yell at me, throw things, kick me out of the room. He might hit me.

I didn’t care. He had a right to know.

I swallowed thickly, shaking my head. “N-no.”

“Did something happen on your walk? Are you okay?”

I shook my head.

“What? Trouble back home–your boyfriend break up with you or something?”

“My mom–” I started, voice breaking, feeling fresh tears of shock on my cheeks.

His eyebrows furrowed, tightening his grip on my hands. “Is she okay? She–”

I saw it in slow motion–his jaw unclenched, eyebrows relaxing from their set, pouted mouth turning down. It was calm. It was knowing.

“You saw them,” he said very softly, letting my hands fall back into his lap. I was too shocked to move them away from his thighs.

“You knew,” I spat–an accusation. I hadn’t meant to make it one.

Connor scrubbed at his eyes roughly, flopping onto his back against the bed. Frustrated.

“I was tired of my dad reading my fucking emails, so I hacked into his–I only saw a few. I didn’t want to see anymore.”

I paled, feeling nauseous. “So it’s happened before?” I choked.

He swallowed. “That was two summers ago.”

“Fuck,” I hissed uncharacteristically, surprised to find Connor stretching out an arm to me. I took his hand with a firm grip. “How long before then.”

He shrugged. “Maybe our whole lives. Maybe before. I’m not sure, angel.”

I nodded, secretly pleased that he was so calm. It kept me level, grounded, watching where our hands were linked.

“What do we do?” I choked. “I have to tell my dad. He deserves to know.”

Connor’s eyebrows furrowed. “Everything would change. He’d tell my mom.”

I bit down on my lip, folding down onto my back to lay down beside Connor. “I hadn’t considered that.”

Connor sighed, scratching at my hand tenderly with his black painted nails. “I’m not sure that my mom and Zoe could handle the news–it’s not like they’d turn to me. They’d be alone. Zoe might even take my dad’s side.”

I groaned, stealing my hands to scrub at my eyes. My wet hair was beginning to dry in a tangled mess.

“This is too much,” I mumbled, rolling onto my side to face Connor, staring at his bare, freckled shoulder. “I don’t know what to do. If I can do anything.”

I jumped a foot out of my skin when he placed a hand at the corner of my jaw, brushing the tangled hair back out of my face. “You don’t have to think about it right now. You’ve had a really long fucking day. You should sleep.”

I didn’t want to sleep–I didn’t want Connor to leave. I didn’t know how to say that.

I couldn’t believe that everyone had tried to desperately to convince me Connor Murphy was a bad boy–fuck them, Connor Murphy was good. He was better than everyone in this cabin combined.

He cared about me.

I caught his wrist, which froze in my grasp, but I just took his bony hand and cradled it between my hands the same way he’d done mine, tracing the lines across his palm. He sucked  in a sharp breath.

“Okay,” I said, and he smiled, moving away. I let go of his hand.

“I just have to turn off the light. Get comfy.”

His retreating footsteps filled my stomach with dread, but nevertheless I unzipped his jacket and draped it on top of the blanket so that it would at least keep my feet warm. Pulling the pillow tight behind my head, I was pleased to find it sort of smelled like Connor’s shampoo as the light clicked off. It left me feeling a little more safe. Ironic, I realized. I was in the middle of a wilderness, I’d almost been abducted, my mother was downstairs ruining our family, and all I could find myself to be worried about was if Connor would be okay.

The bed dipped behind me, shocking me into stillness, surprising me even more when someone lifted the sheet and slid in behind me, a bony hand resting on my hip.

“This okay?” He asked, and I dared to open my eyes to meet his. They were unsure, nervous. He was scared I’d reject him. I nodded, scooting closer.

“It really will be okay, you know,” he assured. “Whatever you choose, I’m gonna be with you.”

“You’re amazing,” I said without thinking, but being entirely sincere. Even in the dark, I saw his eyes go wide and his cheeks tinge a deep magenta in his pale face.

“No, I’m not.”

“Yes, you are,” I assured with a laugh, reaching across the divide to poke at his side, slightly surprised to still find him shirtless. He’d withdrawn his hand almost immediately, keeping respectfully to his side of the bed. “I’d be dead without you. And you’ve supported me this whole way.”

His jaw clenched and unclenched, freeing one of his arms to pick at the wrinkled sheets between us. “I just, fuck, I knew you’d hear some shit, but I was hoping you’d be able to come out here and we could start over again, like before? Zoe started her smear campaign almost immediately. I just, fuck, nevermind.”

I watched him withdraw, turning over with his back to me, the pale plains of his back bared to me.

“Con,” I said very softly. “I don’t care what they say–fuck them,” I laughed, watching Connor’s shoulders shake. “I think you’re good, Connor, and I miss being your friend.”

I watched with bated breath as his back rose and fell with his steady breath in the cold room, his skin radiating heat. I shifted closer, crossing the divide between us. He didn’t respond.

I didn’t sleep.

——

I was alerted late in the day by a noise–it was daylight, I noted, the clock on the bedside table reading it was almost noon. I was groggy, still in the state between sleep and consciousness. The room was shrouded in a bright grey hue from the winter wonderland outside–it had snowed a significant amount, apparently, and the white fluff stuck hopelessly to the window.

At the foot of the bed, Connor was on his knees, pulling a navy sweater over his head. It was tight, with a stretched collar and holes at the hem, but he looked good in it. His hair was frizzed at the temples, and his eyes were wide when we saw me.

“You’re awake.”

I just nodded, a little embarrassed. Part of me hoped Connor would just let last night drop, and we could continue our indifference toward each other, but most of me felt as if we had an unfinished conversation to attend to.

“Is anyone back yet?” I asked, surprised as Connor came to sit in front of me, legs crossed kindergarten style. He shook his head.

“No, actually. No one came back from their trip, and the lovebirds have miraculously vanished for a ski day. It’s just me and you.”

“Oh.”

Connor seemed unsure for a moment, brushing his hands off on his pants. “I’m sorry, um, about last night? I should’ve asked first if it was okay to sleep next to you, I just–I know you said you missed being friends, so I thought–”

“It was nice,” I cut him off with a smile that was nearly all false bravado. “Warm. I really do miss hanging out with you.”

He pursed his lips in way of a smile. “Me too. Miss having friends, period, but you’re kinda great, so–I’ll shut up.”

Stretching, I groaned with the sensation and smiled widely at him. “We can be friends again, don’t you think?” I asked, rubbing the sleep from my eyes. When my vision cleared, he was sitting by my feet, eyes downcast.

“It’s kinda lame, isn’t it?” He asked, sending ice down my spine.

“What, I’m not cool enough for you?” I teased half heartedly, despite feeling slightly sick. If Connor left now, I’d be marooned on this island I’d made for myself, and it wasn’t ideal knowing I no longer had any allies.

“No! That’s not what I–no, fuck, I just meant. Don’t you like Zoe better?”

I shook my head. “I like Zoe–but I liked you first.”

“Yeah, I liked the Teletubbies first, doesn’t mean I prefer them to Death Cab for Cutie.”

I snorted. “Okay, I like you best. You’re both really similar, you know, but you’re kinder.”

He shot me a glare, which I supposed I’d earned. “Liar.”

“Can’t lie,” I protested. “And I like you better. Get used to it.”

He swallowed, shifting on the bed and looking at me again as if grappling to say something. His eyebrows were pinched in the middle, making him look slightly worried, small. I watched the way his mouth bowed as he opened and closed it, my eyes tracing over his soft lips.

He was pretty, I realized, in a way I wouldn’t have considered before.

“What about when you leave?” He asked softly, scratching his arm absently.

I frowned. “What about it?”

“We won’t see each other again.”

I smiled. “Connor, you just live on the other side of town. I do own a car.”

He frowned. “You’d come to see me?”

“If you wanted me to,” I answered honestly. “Or we could go do stuff. It doesn’t make me any difference–whatever you want, I’m game for.”

His eyebrows took a sharp hike into his hairline. “Whatever I want, huh?”

My stomach clenched nervously–decidedly a good kind of nervous. I didn’t realize it till he placed his hand on my ankle, grinning up at me with crooked teeth and pretty eyes, that I might’ve begun to develop a small crush on him.

Which wasn’t okay.

——

“This is such bullshit.”

I cackled as Connor continued to strap on his snow boots, repeatedly tripping and losing his balance in the snow.

“C'mon, it’s fun!” I protested, pulling my sock toboggan down tighter over my ears, trudging another few slow steps through the slush. Connor was frustrated, I could tell, seeing his pink nose and ears, his breaths coming out in angry puffs of smoke.

“No,” he grunted, dragging himself up the trail a few more steps. “Video games are fun. Cartoons are fun. Cheap Internet porn is fun. Dragging my frozen ass up a mountain covered in snow for ten miles is not my idea of fun, dude.”

“It’s not ten miles,” I protested, taking a seat on a mostly clean looking rock, patting the seat beside me in condolence to Connor, giving him a much needed break. He’d agreed to go outside with me at least once to take a hike, since the Murphy kids never ever wanted to do anything that didn’t involve fried food or touristy tie dye t-shirts. We’d been going for a few hours now, and the last bench had easily been miles ago. I wanted to see where the trail ended.

Part of me was scared he’d only agreed because he thought I would break. I’d surprised myself with how calm I’d been after, well, what a nightmare this trip had been. I supposed I’d be worse once my dad got back–but he wasn’t yet, so I was content to have my last moments with Connor.

“We’ve been out here for hours, man, don’t you think we should head back before it gets dark?” He whined, leaning forward on his elbows and rubbed his hands together–he had on mittens, which was probably the cutest thing I’d ever seen. Say what you want about Connor Murphy, his aesthetic was absolutely demolished once you put him in a fire engine red puffer coat.

I sighed, glancing wistfully up the trail. I’d like to finish, but Connor was right–it was getting dark, too dangerous out for us to be out here alone. He’d humored me enough for today.

Time to go back and face reality.

I just nodded, stuffing my hands in my pockets and rising from the rock, giving a decent stretch before moving forward back down the path, Connor scurrying along beside me.

“Thanks for coming,” I said again, nudging him with my shoulder. He stumbled gracefully, grinning with a subdued force that warmed me a little, before checking me back with his shoulder.

“Don’t tell anyone,” he warned, stuffing his hands in his pockets. “But it wasn’t totally awful.”

I snorted. “I won’t let anyone know Connor Murphy can feel fun.”

Biting back a smile, he nudged me again. “God, please don’t. Then they might bring me back here and I’ll have to spend another two weeks with you.”

“I’m sure I’m just killing you inside,” I teased. “How dare your parents give you unfiltered access to a teenage girl.”

“Who never wears pants around the house,” he added sagely.

“And sleeps in your bed!” I choked with laughter, the bird walking along the snow path in front of us clearing the way. “God, I can’t believe I did that. I’m sorry, I was probably awful. Did I snore?”

His mouth twisted, as if trying to look indifferent but instead just failed at smothering a smile, both corners of his lips turning in a different direction.

“Not awful,” he offered, earning an embarrassed groan from me. “No! It’s cute, like a kid, I promise. You kicked the shit out of me, though.”

“You’re kidding me,” I groaned. “I’m so so sorry! I didn’t hurt you, did I?”

“Might be some bruises,” he grinned, to my further mortification. “Hey, nah, I’m kidding. Any damage will heal. It’s kinda funny.”

I cocked an eyebrow from where I was hiding my face behind my gloves. “Seriously?”

“Yeah, don’t sweat it,” he said, reaching out to take my wrist, pulling one of my hands away from my face. He didn’t realize it, just held it, swinging stiffly between us as we walked. He held his breath for a moment before continuing, “I would’ve let you know if I didn’t like it.”

“Kinky,” I said upon reflex, earning a lazy kick to my ankle.

“You’re hilarious. I just meant you’re warm, maybe the bruises are worth it.”

I felt my face get hot, words forming in my belly, escaping before I could choke them back. “Yeah? Maybe I’ll kiss them better tonight, if Zoe isn’t back.”

He let go of my wrist like I’d burned him.

“Sor–”

“Don’t,” he said quietly, stuffing his hands in his pockets, beginning to walk quickly ahead of me.

“What?” I screeched, frustrated.

“Don’t fake flirt with me. It’s not funny,” he spat, continuing walking too fast on his ridiculously long legs.

“Who said it was fake?” I grumbled. “I’m not making fun of you, Connor.”

There was a beat of silence, pulling at my heart with sharp claws, the dull ache starting in my chest and spreading. I’d messed up everything.

“It’s getting dark,” he growled. “And we don’t have a flashlight. Try and keep up.”

——

The panic set in at twilight.

We were running.

He was holding my hand again, dragging me roughly down the mountain, hoping desperately to see some kind of light pollution as the sun set, but there was nothing.

“We should see lights by now,” I told him. “We can see the lights from our cabin, we should see the lights now.”

“We went down the wrong side of the mountain,” he gasped, already out of breathe. I knew his lungs weren’t the best, and we’d been running for awhile now.

“There has to be something at the bottom,” I whispered hopelessly.

“There is,” he growled. “It’s called a gorge, then you climb the other mountain, and there’s the next state. Fuck, how did we get so turned around?”

“Doesn’t matter, Con,” I said hopelessly. “It’s gonna be dark soon.”

His dark eyes widened. “You aren’t sincerely suggesting we try to find shelter. In the middle of a national park.”

“I’ve got a flare gun and a flint,” I told him. “But we have to get back up out of the trees.”

“You want us to climb the mountain again?” He hissed, holding both my hands now. “Are you positive you don’t have signal?”

I nodded. “I’m really sorry, Connor.”

“Don’t be sorry. Start walking.”

——

It was an accident.

It was dark.

I had an analog watch, letting me know it was nearly nine pm. We’d found shelter just as it had started to snow–the  ground here was wet, quickly freezing into ice, and we kept slipping up on the trail. I’d set off the flare an hour ago, and, so far, nothing. The snow had begun to pick up, and we’d found a alcove between two adjacent rocks–not big, about the size of a walk in closet, but enough space for us, our bags, and a pile of wood that refused to light. It kept the snow and wind off of us, and the alcove was high enough I felt safe, with a small mouth that made me feel as if at any instant we could be trapped.

It was an accident.

“The fire won’t light,” I said again, hopelessly, watching my now bloody fingers go numb from trying desperately to get the flint to do its job. I couldn’t feel them without my gloves on.

Connor, huddled in a corner, viciously rubbed his arms in an attempt to get warm. I knew the  temperature would only drop from here. If someone hadn’t seen the flare….

“There’s no dry wood. I checked.”

“Nothing?”

“No, okay? Nothing. That’s it.”

I knew he was right–and searching now would only prove to be counter productive and dangerous. I moved our bags and the pile of firewood to the entrance, sealing us in.

“It’s gonna be pitch black soon,” I warned, watching Connor tap angrily at his phone. “You should probably save your battery. I don’t have a flashlight.”

He snorted. “You’ll bring sleeping bags and a flint, but not a flashlight?”

“It’s the emergency bag! I didn’t pack it, Connor. Make fun of it all you want, but it’s keeping us alive!”

There was a beat of silence, before he clicked his phone off, leaving us in darkness. “M sorry.”

I dragged out the single sleeping bag, stretching it out to him. “Don’t be sorry.” I felt guilty–it was my fault we were in this mess to begin with. “Wanna granola bar?”

“Save it,” he said in a clipped tone, unsure what to make of it since we were veiled in darkness. “We might need it later.” Then, softer: “What’s the plan?”

I heard him stand, and walk across the slick ice of the alcove, coming to stand beside me, his hand at my elbow.

“Well,” I said very slowly, feeling my throat get thick. “Survive the night, stay awake, and once dawn hits we head back to the other side of the mountain, if no one comes.”

“If no one comes,” he echoed, voice oddly hollow. I choked.

“It, erm, is very possible they think we just wandered off, you know? We’re teenagers,” I reminded gently. I left out the part the police would be less than willing to look–Connor had a history of running away after a bad binge.

“Fuck,” he growled.

It was an accident. It was quick, in the dark, we couldn’t see.

He reached our for me, his open palm colliding with the back of my head, yanking me tightly again his chest, my nose buried in his nylon puffer coat. I felt his other hand, too forcefully, at the small of my back, and I nearly screamed, terrified this was an episode I couldn’t control–

“We’re gonna make it outta here,” he breathed against my ear, his breath warm and humid against my freezing ears. It set off a light bulb in my brain. “We’re gonna go back home and–fucking shit, I’m gonna be a goddamn good friend to you and we’re gonna–fuck,” he hissed, his clipped voice breaking off. “I’m gonna take care of you, I’m not going anywhere.”

I let myself break open, collapsing against him, openly sobbing with regret. He stiffened, but just tightened his arms around me despite our bulky clothes.

“I’m sorry,” I whispered. “This is all my fault.”

“It is not,” he hissed, shaking me a little. “We had no way of knowing this would happen. The trail looked safe.”

I just nodded, knowing that arguing would tire me out. I felt the lethargy begin to creep in my bones–Connor was warm, and it was late, and we were tired. Falling asleep meant dying.

“Get out the sleeping bag,” he said, extracting himself from me, and I heard his hands scrape along the hard rock looking for the entrance. “And I’ll look for some more blankets in the bag, see if we can’t insulate–fuck!

“What is it?” I screeched, turning, grabbing his hand to only find that my own was suddenly wet, almost sticky, and Connor pulled away with a howl. I smelled the metallic sting before I realized.

“Something cut my hand!”

“Stay away from the wall,” I warned. “Take your undershirt off, I’ll rip it up.” I felt around desperately for Connor’s phone, immediately illuminating our little cave with a blinding blue light.

The amount of blood smeared across the wall was nauseating. There was a sharp spot Connor must’ve grabbed too quickly.

He was crying, trying desperately to unzip his coat with one hand, the other dripping onto the floor.

“Fuck, I hope something doesn’t smell that,” I whispered, laying down the light and running to help him get undressed, careful of the open cut across his palm.

“I knew I was gonna get naked tonight,” he said with an unsure laugh, “I just didn’t realize it would be like this.”

My face flushed. “What, you thought I’d suck you off because we’re about to die?”

He shivered, accentuated by me ripping his white shirt down the front, exposing his blue, goosebumped skin.

“Fuck,” he hissed, and I was unsure if it was from the cold, the pain, or my foul language.

“Hope this is clean,” I muttered, wrapping a strip of his white shirt across his palm in a desperate attempt to stop the bleeding. It was a good way to get an infection, but I wasn’t sure what else to do.

“I didn’t–I wouldn’t ask you to–”

“I’m not sucking you off!”

“Fuck, I just meant–hypothermia, skin to skin, I saw it in a movie–”

The phone light clicked off. I sighed, tying off the cotton bandage.

“You wanna get naked in the sleeping bag,” I finished.

“I don’t want to!” He howled. “And not naked–just, enough to stay alive, shit. It’s gonna be negative ten out here soon, I just wanna stay alive.”

“We should hurry,” I said, surprising myself by reaching out to urge him to rub at his bare chest, earning a gasp from him. “You’re gonna freeze soon. Get your pants off.”

I handed him the sleeping bag, my breath catching as I heard his belt clink to the floor, trying very hard not to think about the implications of this. How far did he expect me to undress? And, if we did get in here, it would be ridiculously tight, we might fall asleep–

“Hurry up, this bag is an icicle with one person.”

Straightening out my bra and panties (even if we were going to die, Connor Murphy did not get to cop a feel) I felt my way to the sleeping bag.

My hand on his chest, he guided my legs one at time–one by his side, one between his knees–and gently folded me down against him, uncomfortably tight as his shaking fingers zipped the sleeping bag up.

He was breathing hard against my temple, and I immediately began to sweat–between the nylon bag and the fact I felt all of Connor Murphy pressed against my chest and stomach–it was nerve wracking.

“Don’t fall asleep,” he reminded in a hoarse voice, shaking a little. I couldn’t quite figure out where his hands were.

“Don’t get a boner,” I begged, earning a beat of silence before:

“I, uh, am–I’m really trying not to,” he groaned, and I could feel how hot his face was against my temple.

“If it helps,” I said, slightly disgusted. “You can imagine our parents kissing. That really kills my fire.”

“Ew,” he said. “Please don’t.”

I grinned. “What? You don’t want me to be your hot step sister?”

Stop it,” he begged, making me laugh, pressing my face against the soft cushion of his hair, nosing at the column of his throat. He groaned a little, and I felt his fingers twitch beside my hips.

“I can’t believe their secret is going to die with us,” I sighed. “No one is ever going to know.”

“I can’t believe you’re lying on top of me in your spiderman panties, but that’s also happening, so you’d better believe it,” he sighed, hands twitching again.

“You can touch me, you know,” I breathed, a little embarrassed against his ear. “We’re gonna die anyway, might as well die comfy.”

“We won’t die,” he promised, his hands clasping over the small of my back regardless.  “Hey,” he crooned, in a soft voice I hadn’t heard before. Encouraging. “Remember sharing a sleeping bag when we were kids?”

I laughed half heartedly, remembering fully. “The thing was always full of pixie stick wrappers.”

“It was an addiction, and I have quit,” he said sagely, earning another laugh from me. I almost joked about the pot, but part of me knew it wasn’t a funny joke. It didn’t have anything to do with him. He sighed, one finger trailing up my spine. “God, I was so in love with you.”

I froze against him, my body a live wire. His hand pulled back.

“I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have said tha–”

“Were you really?” I asked. I felt him smile, before leaning in to kiss my cheek, slowly, his dry lips lingering.

“Don’t tell me you didn’t know,” he groaned. “Zoe had me convinced you were just humoring me because you knew I’d do anything for you.”

I pulled up, as far as I could (which wasn’t much) squinting to make out his face in the dark. “That wasn’t true. You were my best friend.”

He nodded. “Yeah, I know. God, that time when you kissed me….I’m so sorry we stopped talking. I don’t think I’m ever gonna forgive myself for that.”

“Connor,” I said very softly, reaching up to tangle my hands lightly in his hair. “If we’re gonna die…can I just….”

He surged up before I could, the nylon around us snapping taunt, squeaking in protest. Up on his elbows, his bony hands found their purchase on my bare hips, and I felt the wetness through one of the bandages–his hand was still bleeding, the idiot.

His lips were dry, and he kissed much too roughly for someone who wasn’t holding my head in place, our teeth clinking together in a way that I knew was an accident, sending my skull ringing. His eyes were squeezed shut in the darkness.

I can’t believe it took us to the brink of death for him to admit this.

God, he’s an idiot.

I reached up, pulling at his hair, holding his head to mine, his tongue licking roughly up into my mouth before breaking away–

“Boner,” he warned in a squeak, earning a loud laugh from me, collapsing against his chest.

“Not even in death, Murphy, am I sucking you off on a first or last date,” I giggled against his neck, giving him a chaste kiss there, listening to him groan. His hips canted a little, scaring me, before taking a deep breath to calm himself.

“First date, huh?” I felt him grin, followed by a yawn.

“Stay awake, Connor,” I urged, smacking him hard. “Or I’m gonna twist your nipple.”

“Kinky,” he sighed lethargically. Shit, he was gonna sleep.

“Connor–”

“Promise me this,” he sighed, nuzzling lightly against the side of my face. “If we survive the night by some miracle, and we don’t freeze to death or get eaten by bears or bleed out–you wanna kiss me again? With more clothes on? As my girlfriend?”

I leaned into his touch, tilting my head up to give him access to suck a hickey into my neck, groaning.

“Murphy, if we live, I will suck you off.”

That was the last thing I remembered.

——-

Three days later, it’s still cold. I’m not wearing much–a blue gown with shitty pink flowers, it’s made of some kind of plasticy cotton material. There’s blood under my fingernails and bruises on my neck that are almost embarrassing when I remembered how I got them. My clothes were gone.

Connor was gone.

My mother and father were leaning over my bed, the Murphy's  (minus Cynthia) are behind them. No Connor.

They explained it slowly, eyes wide. They found Connor and I nearly frozen, unconscious. Connor lost a lot of blood, they said, and he wasn’t do so well but he’d woken up several days before me.

He wouldn’t eat until they let him see me.

I’d nearly ripped out my IV to get to him.

He was wearing the same shitty hospital gown, his hair pulled back. He’s got hickies I don’t remember giving him across his collarbone that are ridiculously visible. There were purple bruises under his eyes, like he hadn’t been sleeping.

“They said you were still too sick to get out of bed,” he grinned, opening his arm, and I immediately stumbled over to the thin mattress, pressing myself tightly against him. His hand is thickly wrapped in cotton, a few tubes full of a yellow brown liquid in them. He was combing my hair–which I’m sure was a rats nest–out with his free hand.

“They said the same about you.”

“We’re really lucky, you know,” I said softly, tapping at his chest. “I almost lost you.”

“Almost lost you,” he choked out, pulling away to scan my face, before grinning. “Which would’ve sucked, because you’re my only friend right now.”

“Friend?” I said, trying hard not to sound disappointed. I supposed I shouldn’t have been–what we’d done in the heat of a moment hadn’t meant anything then. It had been a lie for my humor.

It wasn’t fair.

Connor’s eyebrows furrowed. “You, um–do you wanna be my girlfriend?”

I frowned. “I mean, only if you want me to.”

He grinned, the smile splitting across his face. “It’ll suck–your parents will hate me.”

“Right now, I kind of hate my parents, so.”

“I do a lot of pot.”

“We can do something else instead,” I grinned, nudging him, having the nerve to blush.

He licked his lips, looking down at where he’d intertwined our hands. “You–you can’t fix me, you know? I’m still gonna be, you know.”

I nodded, bring his hand up to kiss across the bloody knuckles of his good hand. “I know. I promised I’d be your girlfriend, though. A promise is a promise.”

He grinned. “I’m glad you say that–because you did promise something else.”

I shook my head, rising from the bed. “The kiss is for when we have clothes on, remember.”

“I wasn’t talking about that kiss.”

Connor Murphy!

Hey Voltron Fandom, what the fuck?

I’m going to get straight to the point, you guys are self-destructive and are going to kill the fandom over your petty arguments and stupid self-entitlement. There hasn’t been a day since the beginning of the fandom that everything has just been peaceful for once (and I’ve been here since it’s birth) You all should be ashamed of yourselves, fighting online and hurting real people over fiction (this is not specifically towards ships btw) And I’m putting my foot down at all of this bullshit and trying to stop it

This is pretty lengthy so everything is under the cut

Keep reading

I’m not sure why I hate the epilogue of Harry Potter so much, but I always imagine Harry getting completely BORED of normal life a year into it. He can’t handle it. His life has always been filled with trouble, kind of like Lord Tennyson’s view of Ulysses, and he goes stir-crazy, engaging in reckless behaviour almost daily. Hermione is worried sick because it’s causing Harry and Ginny to fight. ‘You got through all you went through in your 19 years just to kill yourself on some bloody dare?!’

Draco Malfoy shows up on Hermione’s twentieth birthday with a story of how he can’t handle how he was a coward and talks of how he killed a demon that tried to devour an old lady on the outskirts of muggle London. He says he wants to do this again; the thrill of it was amazing but he needs a partner or two. Harry and Hermione are all for it. Hermione, too, has grown tired of the Ministry life. After all, she has already secured rights for elves and goblins if they want them; that only took her a year. Hunting evil things is appealing, and she’ll be helping not only the wizarding community but the non-magical one as well.

Ginny is furious and leaves Harry for Blaise Zambini. Ron is not keen on more adventure, either. He decides he would rather help George at the joke shop than work with a Malfoy, although he, Harry, and Hermione will stay in touch. ‘Write to me every week,’ he threatens, ‘or else.’

Harry, Hermione, and Draco go on to live their lives doing the things Gilderoy Lockhart only claimed to do: battling demons, ghosts, poltergeists, sirens, urban legends, vampires, and more –all with a magical tent and three wands instead of a Chevy Impala and guns.

They call on Luna Lovegood whenever they encounter a creature they know next to nothing about, pop in on the Weasleys from time to time, and even allow Ginny to write books of their travels based on Hermione’s obsessive journal-keeping.

They become animagi. Hermione watches in surprise as her patronus changes into something unexpected. To her utmost delight, they learn about different forms of magic, even gain new magical abilities whenever they encounter a wise tutor well-versed in the more obscure magical arts.

Odd things happening while on the road are completely normal: one time, this crazy drunk American fangirl dressed up like Supergirl, who went by the name of Charlie Bradbury, latched onto Hermione’s back like koala bear when they were investigating a case at Comic-Con and wouldn’t let go, proclaiming as loud as that Banshee that one time in Ireland that Hermione was her idol, and that she was so glad she didn’t actually marry Ron.

'She reminds me of you when you were around Gilderoy Lockhart,’ Harry had said with great fondness afterwards. The backhand he took to the gut and death glare from his best friend, he thought, were completely worth it. 'Look at it this way, Hermione, she was so drunk she got a Princess Leia tattoo. She won’t remember anything.’

Imagine Hermione frustrated and flustered with her head in her hands as Harry and Draco’s school rivalry almost cost them their lives yet again. Then, she loses her temper, and both boys shrink back in fear. 'Has she always been this scary?’ Draco mutters out of the corner of his mouth to which Harry can only nod furiously. The disappointment the both of them feel is almost childlike. Draco and Harry become very close. Killing creatures will bond even the worst enemies together.

It changes Draco. All of his prior prejudice is smashed having spent so much time with his childhood rivals, and he becomes a much better person for it. Harry is reminded of Snape, and how Dumbledore once voiced he thought they sorted too early. Maybe Draco belonged in Gryffindor, too. Though the pain etched deep within Draco is visibly fading, it will never go away completely, and Harry often wonders what would have happened had he been sorted into Gryffindor with them.

Harry, however, is fully satisfied in that moment. They are in the middle of a hunt. Sitting against the front of the tent in a small forest on the east border of Paris, Harry lets out a long sigh. It is the first time he feels truly at ease in a while. Adjusting his glasses, he takes in the loving and relaxing company of two of his closest friends.

Draco is fiddling with the old radio, and tears of laughter escape Hermione as she reads. This is a normal night for all of them. 'Albus Severus?!’ she hollers, unable to keep her grip on the novel that has her undivided attention. The pumkin-coloured book falls, still open, flat on her stomach, and she dissolves completely into a fit of giggles. 'Muggles have quite the imagination these days, don’t they, Harry?’

'It’s not that bad of a name,’ Draco says, rolling his eyes. He turns the dial on the radio, and a hauntingly familiar tune sounds through it. His annoyed frown is replaced by a smirk, 'Your song is playing, you two.’

Harry can’t help but snort. Hermione throws a sarcastic remark towards Draco over the name Scorpious, before Harry finds himself being dragged to his feet by his childhood friend. Green eyes meet brown ones with a grin. They can’t not dance to 'Oh Children.’

Holding Hermione’s body close to him and swaying to the music under the stars, not all that different from the time they did a little over five years ago, he knows he made the right choice in going on the road. He is drinking life to the lees. This brilliant life with all its scars, beauty, and constant excitement is magical. It has made everything well again.

—  Non-Canon Epilogue : Drinking Life to the Lees

helly-watermelonsmellinfellon  asked:

Hi! You don't have to do this any time soon or anything, but I wanted to ask if you could gather a collection of all the fics written for @beanpots' Day & Night AU? I was reading over mine and contemplating adding more to it, when I realized I hadn't read any of the other fics inspired for it. And now I'm curious to see the other fics. Thanks for all the work you do! <3

This is one of my favourite AUs!! Much love to @beanpots who created the original AU that started it all which you can find here

(The wonderful art was created by @vulpes–vulpes and you can find the original post here! Permission was granted by the artist, please do not repost!)


Day and Night AU


of dusk and dawn and a love beyond by exile_wrath, Gen, 5.5k
The King of Day, Victor, drops flowers to the Ruler of Night, Yuuri, to express his love for him; yet, they are always returned, as Yuuri thinks that they’re dropped by mistake. Victor cries and plucks wishes off the petals every time, remembering the time when once, they had been together. SO GOOD I LOVE THIS

Carpe Diem, Carpe Noctem by Libika, Gen, 3.2k
Yet he couldn’t help but let his mind wander and think about this beautiful man in a glistening gown, with hundreds of stars shining brightly on it. The way his eyes shined – as they were made of thousands of stars themselves – when he was thinking about something. The Sky court was bathed in sunlight, and he couldn’t help but feel a bit melancholic. Very sweet!

When the Sun Met the Moon by Birdieee, Not Rated, 5.4k
The rulers of the two kingdoms are as distant as the stars themselves, yet the invisible thread of fate binds them together. What happens when the sun and the moon fall in love? Lovely Day and Night AU!

A Lunar Eclipse to Remember by Phoenix_Rising719, Gen, 7.5k
The King of Night, Yuuri Katsuki, is doing his best to keep it together and host a Lunar Eclipse Gala on his own. But that only works so well with out poor anxiety ridden child. But that’s nothing a little liquid courage can’t fix, right? Such a great fic!

Dusk & Dawn by Watermelonsmellinfellon, Mature, 3.5k
Victor was the King of Day. Dawn incarnate. Yuuri was the King of Night. Dusk incarnate. Dawn and Dusk come together twice every day, to exchange duties. They are eternal, existing in a romance as old as time itself. And the celestial bodies of their universe forever turn because of their power and love. I LOVE this!

The Eclipse of Roses by OrionHunts, Gen, 2k 
Victor is the king of daytime, better known as Day, and is crushing on his neighboring king, Night. After sending countless flowers Yuuri’s way, it finally takes Night’s dear friend Dusk (Phichit) to give the two of them the final push into falling in love. Phichit is the best matchmaker tbh

Sky of Endless Love by CagedBirdSings, Gen, 3.2k (WIP)
In a Realm far above the Earth, the King of Day leaves behind roses of vivid red - all in the hopes of having his feelings reach the King of Night. Meanwhile, Yuuri wonders why Victor keeps dropping his roses. SO FREAKIN CUTE

Stardust by Iki_victuri, Not Rated, 5.9k
After millennia of crossing paths daily Yuuri still had never even gazed upon the Day King’s face. All that will change in a fraction of a moment, along with his life, forever. Thumbs up!

When The Sun Chases The Moon From The Sky by ShrubbyScribe, Teen, 13k
The first time it happened, he thought it was a mistake.
The second time it happened, he didn’t know what to make of it.
The seventh time it happened, he started to get annoyed. AWESOME fic!

Finally Here by darklilcorner, Gen, 1.9k
Yuuri is the King of Night and Viktor is the King of Day. Grateful to the Night for allowing him to rest, Viktor leaves meaningful roses for Yuuri. The roses show how he feels, but Yuuri always returns them… Great fic!

morning and night by cosmofluous, Gen, 2.9k (WIP)
He really does hang the stars in the sky, and burn as bright as the sun. The descriptions in this fic are amazing!

Of Cloudless Climbs and Starry Skies by Maiden_of_the_Moon, Gen, 1.5k
The King of Day should not turn his head to watch. He should not hesitate, even though the sun does in the distance. He should not drop that single rose when their slippers align, when their gossamer gowns chafe whispers, and starlight pokes pinpricks into the dome of the sky. He should not romanticize that moment when day is overcome by night.But in being so overcome, how can he not? Very good fic!

For Your Time (I’ll Give You This Smile) by Liana_Legaspi, Gen, 2.2k
“Do you love me?” the King of Day says to Yuuri’s retreating back.Stop.Think.“I haven’t decided yet.” Yuuri confesses, “I might hate you.”There’s a smile in Viktor’s voice that’s sweeter than any lullaby Yuuri’s ever heard. “Then, if that’s the case, I’ll wait with you until you decide.” WOW!

Open Up The Stars by Kisnau, Gen, 9.4k (WIP)
The Sun and Moon were old friends. This is not a story of the Sun and Moon, equal entities and ancient neighbors. This is a story of their children, Night and Day. 

anonymous asked:

This is a five-hour-long plane ride, we’re sitting together and you’re deathly afraid of flying.

The man sitting on Bucky’s side is very attractive. Now, this is Bucky’s very first time sitting in first class (he got bumped from a previous flight and got an upgrade because of it), so he doesn’t necessarily know the rules, but it probably should’ve occurred to him that the seat would also come with a view. It never occurred to him that the beautiful people would be in first, but he also never stopped to look around, given that he always had to hustle back to coach carrying a roll-aboard carry-on that is always a little too overstuffed to fit in the overhead compartment, but which he tries to shove in anyway.

In first class there are beautiful men and the flight attendant shoved his bag in for him.

What a life.

Bucky wonders whether he should make conversation, but decides against it when he really looks at the guy. Sure, he’s practically from the pages of <i>Sports Illustrated</i>, but he also looks nervous — chewing on his lip, balling his hands into fists then releasing them. It’s probably best that Bucky just focuses on which of the many movie options available to him he should watch during the flight. It’s a long one, about five hours, so he’ll probably be able to fit in two movies if he doesn’t fall asleep. (Bucky doesn’t plan on falling asleep, since this is probably the one time in his life that he will enjoy the luxuries of first class and he doesn’t want to miss a moment.)

But Bucky is surprised when the guy turns to him. “Hi,” he says.

“Hi,” Bucky responds. The man’s teeth are so straight and white that he looks like he could’ve stepped right out of a Crest commercial.

“How are you?” the man asks, sounding a little forced. Bucky glances down; the man is holding onto the armrest so hard that his knuckles are turning white.

“I’m great,” Bucky responds, a little squeakier than intended. “You?”

“I’ve been better,” he says, frowning. He turns forward again. “Do you think I could get some water?” he asks, not like he’s asking Bucky to get it for him, but like he’s genuinely confused as to whether he can get some water.

“I’m sure you can,” Bucky says. Seeing that this guy is probably not really used to flying like this (not that Bucky is, either), Bucky undoes his seatbelt and stands up. A flight attendant notices him immediately, and Bucky gives her a little wave.

“What’re you…” the man says, then folds into himself a little when the flight attendant arrives. “Hi,” he says.

“Hi there,” she says, giving the man a bright smile, then one to Bucky. “Can I help you with something?”

“My seat mate and I would like some water, if you don’t mind,” Bucky says with the biggest smile he can muster. He thinks it’d probably be less awkward for the guy if he asks for some, too.

“Of course, it’ll be just a second,” she says, heading back to that secretive area where flight attendants make magic happen.

“Thank you,” the man says.

“No sweat,” Bucky responds. “I’m Bucky, by the way.”

“Steve.”

“You nervous about flying?” Bucky asks.

Steve nods. “It’s been a while, and the last plane I was in crashed.”

“What?” Bucky asks, though it sounds a lot more like, “Whuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuht?”

The man gives a kind of sheepish, sad smile. “I’m a little nervous about flying again after that.”

Bucky wants Steve to be lying.

He desperately wants Steve to be lying.

He can totally tell that Steve is <i>not lying</i>.

“Fuck,” Bucky says, flopping back into his seat. “You gonna be okay?”

“Do I have a choice?” Steve asks just as the flight attendant reappears.

“Here are your waters,” she says, gingerly handing one to Steve, which he then passes to Bucky. She gives Steve the second plastic glass and he takes an immediate, grateful sip. “Can I do anything else for you two?” she asks.

“Steve?” Bucky asks. Steve shakes his head. “No, I think we’re fine. Thank you.”

She nods, then looks down at Steve. She takes a quick glance from side to side, then leans in and says, very quietly, “And thank you for your service, sir.”

“Thank you,” Steve says quietly, mustering up a smile before taking another small sip.

She grins, then heads back to the flight attendant area.

“You a vet?” Bucky asks, feeling like kind of an ass for not noticing. He takes a sip of water and looks up at Steve.

Steve nods. “Yeah,” he says. Then before Bucky can think of something to say in response he adds, “I’m Captain America.”

Bucky spits the water out all over his pants.

“Excuse me,” Steve says, raising an arm to get the flight attendant’s attention. “I think we’re going to need a napkin.”

As Bucky wipes down his pants he thinks to himself that he should’ve asked for a seat in coach. He’s never had an American legend sit next to him in coach.

“Thanks for taking my mind off of things,” Steve says with a smile, a real, dazzling smile, as he takes the wet, crumpled napkin from Bucky’s hand.

And Bucky knows now that he wouldn’t move to coach for the world.

Reddie headcanon : shoulder kisses

  • Shoulder kisses are their thing
  • They’ve done them ever since they met
  • Whenever one of them feels sad, alone, is scared or having a troubled time, the other will be there and calm them down with a shoulder kiss
  • Richie is a walking disaster, always has been and will always be
  • Especially in Pre-school, Richie had the habbit of falling over his own feet or any random object he didn’t see because he was too busy doing everything but looking where he was going
  • Eddie of course was always there to rescue him from getting an infection with some desinfectant and band aids
  • Whenever he goes to the doctor he gets a kiss from his mom for being good, so he always presses a soft little quick kiss to Richie’s shoulder (which both of them don’t find weird at all, because a thing such as personal space doesn’t exist to them) because he didn’t put up much of a fight when Eddie stitched him back up
  • It’s not only Eddie giving Richie shoulder kisses tho. Richie of course does it too
  • Whenever Eddie starts to panic, and gets an Ashtma or panic attack, Richie’s always the first to be by his side and calm him down or pull out the spare inhaler he always carries around for Eddie
  • He always pulls Eddie close into his side to show him he’s there and Eddie’s not alone
  • Richie then whispers sweet nothings into his ear and presses gentle comforting kisses to Eddie’s shoulder
  • When Richie grows older, things start to get really bad with his parents and Richie starts sleeping at Eddie’s more often than at his, because no matter how hard he tries he can’t sleep at home
  • Because the feeling of home and safety isn’t where his own bed is, but where Eddie is
  • Eddie knows this, and he never complains about Richie coming into his room at night
  • He always scoots over and makes space for Richie to cuddle into
  • When Richie’s all settled, Eddie cuddles into him and presses a light kiss to Richie’s shoulder, to show him that everything’s okay and that he’s safe, because he knows that’s all Richie needs
  • The day Eddie finds out about his mom lying to him, and that his meds are ‘gazebos’, he spends his entire day with Richie at the quarry
  • Whenever his breath starts getting a little erratic, Richie immediately pulls him a little closer and presses a kiss to his shoulder because he knows it calms Eddie down
  • Over time they stop only using it as a way to comfort the other
  • It has become a habit over the years, and the feeling of safety and familiarity it brings is all they really need.
  • They do it at least 5 times a day
  • When Eddie’s at his locker to get his books, Richie goes up behind him and presses a kiss to his shoulder as a good morning, because he knows better than to talk to Eddie in the morning, because as much as Eddie’s a sweetheart, he’s a bitch to talk to when he’s tired
  • Eddie’s mood always lightens up when Richie does it tho
  • One time, Eddie gets Richie to study with him for an upcoming chemistry test, and all the losers are surprised, because Richie Tozier always prides himself on not studying and still getting only A’s
  • Although they all know that Richie is 100% whipped for Eddie and would do everything he asks him to
  • Richie gets really bored at some point and starts watching Eddie
  • He finds himself thinking that Eddie’s really cute, poking his tongue out like that while looking very concentrated
  • Then he smacks himself because Eddie is always cute
  • The movement made Eddie look up, because he knows Richie is weird but why tf did he just smack himself in the face
  • But before Eddie can ask him about it, Richie leans over and presses a long, lingering kiss to Eddie’s shoulder and then proceeds to bribe him into getting ice cream with him
  • At movie night with the other losers they’re always cuddled up together under a blanket, because literally none of the other losers can deal with Richie’s constant commentary, opinions about the movie, stupid jokes and impromptu impressions of one of the movie characters whispered into their ear the entire time
  • They don’t know how Eddie manages to sit through the movies without killing Richie
  • Whenever Richie gets too loud, and Billy has to literally hold Stan back so he doesn’t strangle Richie, Eddie leans over and tells him to shut up but always presses a kiss to Richie’s shoulder for good measure, and that makes Richie shut up. At least for 5 minutes
  • Richie and Eddie think the losers don’t know about their thing but they know, because after almost choking Ben in a fight about who gets to put on the toppings on their Pizza next, then saying Eddie can go first and afterwards pressing a kiss to his shoulder isn’t all that subtle Richie
  • They all secretly think it’s cute as fuck
  • Eddie and Richie never stop with the shoulder kisses, even when they’re dating and finally get to kis each other on the mouth

I’m really sorry if anyone has done this before, just tell me and I take it down if one of you did it first, but I really love the concept of Reddie+shoulder kisses