HELLO ELSE I KNOW ITS YOU AND YES I WILL DO THIS MASTERPOST
CAUGHT UP ON
-Welcome To Night Vale
-Alice Isnt Dead
-The Bright Sessions
-Within The Wires
-King Falls AM
-Secrets, Crimes & Audiotape
-The Black Tapes
-The Orbiting Human Circus (of the Air)
-Jim Robbie and the Wanderers
-The Falcon Banner
-The Haven Chronicles
NOT CAUGHT UP ON
-The Adventure Zone
TO LISTEN LIST
-The Strange Case of Starship Iris
-The Magnus Archives
-Alba Salix, Royal Physician
-Our Fair City
-Rex Rivetter: Private Eye
-The Stage Podcast
(ELSE ARE YOU HAPPY NOW I WROTE THIS OUT THREE TIMES)
((yea my to listen list is long im tryna juggle taz and zr its not fun))
(((oh yeah i also listen to sleep with me but i didnt know where to put it so…)))
(Everyone wanted a weird taz zombie au with like… Liches, right? That’s what people wanted?)
Julia/Magnus-centric. Some gore, ultimately hopeful.
It’s not a surprise that she’s here, at the end.
‘Here’ is the only word he can really use to describe it - he’s not sure where exactly he is, only that there’s woods in every direction, he’s turned around enough to have lost the highway, and between the trees moves a hoard. It’s got to be thirty of them at least, and they’re slow but relentless, and even his strength has limits.
He’s taken out ten already, but it’s too many and there’s nowhere to run. When he feels something grab at the back of his neck, all he can feel is a quiet acceptance, and underneath that relief. Julia had asked him to fight, to not give up, to do what he could. And he had. The truck he had been travelling in had probably already made it to the city by now, where the rest of his group could find somewhere to hole up for a while. He hoped they didn’t wait for him long. Taako would understand (Taako knows what losing people looks like, in the shambles of this world). He’d make sure they didn’t stay for long, waiting for someone who was never going to show.
And that was familiar, and that was fine. Hurley and Sloane, lost in another hoard, their car disappearing and never returning. Angus’s grandfather, who left to collect food and never returned. Lup. They would wait, no longer than 24 hours, because that was the rule. And then they would mourn and move on.
He’s glad it worked, jumping off the bed of the truck, making every one of the zombies attempting to board turn and follow him instead. It was stupid, they all made sure to shout that at him as he did it, but the rest of them were safe. That’s what mattered.
The hand on his shoulder tightens, and he closes his eyes.
It’s no surprise, that his wife is here with him. What is a surprise is how he feels lips tickle his ear, hears a voice he hasn’t heard in almost a year whisper “Always too busy being a hero to save yourself, you big dummy.”
He gasps her name, eyes flying open. He hasn’t let himself say her name out loud, not since he said goodbye over her and her father’s makeshift graves. Even the zombies around him seem to have frozen, giving him time to turn around and stare.
She is unmistakably dead. The bite on her shoulder is still there, although it’s more scar than open wound, now. One of her eyes sits strange in its socket, and looking at it Magnus can remember exactly how it felt, to drive the thin blade of his grandfather’s knife through it and into her brain. There’s a ringing in his head, and his limbs don’t feel attached to him anymore. The injured eye is almost entirely red, hardly any iris left. Like any of the zombies he’s seen. But her other eye is still a warm, clear brown, and even though her smile is lopsided now, she’s still the most beautiful person he’s ever seen.
Shortly after the dead started to rise, almost one year ago, Magnus had come home to a house overrun. He’d fought his way through to discover an already-dead father-in-law, and his wife bleeding out on the floor of their bedroom.
She’s begged him to kill her, an apology in her eyes. She didn’t ever want to turn, to have the chance to hurt someone else. She was his world, had been his world since the moment they met. He hadn’t wanted to do it. But he knew, if their positions had been reversed, he would ask for the same.
Magnus Burnsides’ whole world had died in his arms, that day. And now she was here, in front of him, still dead but smiling.
“Magnus,” she says, and he hears it.
“Jules,” he breathes, and thinks that perhaps this is death.
Her eyes flicker over his shoulder, and her grin slips ever so slightly.
“I’ll explain in a moment,” she says, and in the hand not on his shoulder is a large hammer. It’s her favourite one. He had buried her with it. She steps around him and brings it down on the nearest zombie’s head.
Julia had always been strong. She did metalwork, proper smithing. It was how they had met, Magnus hired on as a stuntman and this mountain of a girl stepping up and handing him the sword for the shot. His tongue had felt like lead in his mouth, and when she asked, her voice teasing, if he was a fighter, he had barely managed to get out “a carpenter, actually.”
Julia had always been strong. But never like this.
She is swatting these zombies away, wielding the hammer like it weighs nothing. Heads caving in like eggshells, and when she is finish she turns back to him with a challenge in her eye, like those mornings when they would work out together and then end with arm wrestling. She doesn’t even seem winded.
“Julia,” he says, once more. He remembers Taako laughing off a superstition about magic and threes, but it feels powerful just the same.
She nods, and he’s moving before he has time to think. No more doubts, no wondering as to how this is possible. Magnus rushes in to her arms, picks her up and spins her like they used to do any time one of them was away for longer than a night. She still feels just the same, in his arms. Her skin is colder and when he brushes his fingers over her wrist there’s no heartbeat, but she still fits just the same.
He has so many questions, but they can wait. He holds her in his arms and repeats “I love you, Jules” over and over again until his ears ring with it. They’re both crying, although Julia is managing to do so without tears.
He doesn’t ask, but she tells him anyway, as she holds his hand tight and leads him from the woods.
“There’s ways to come back, if you have the right tools,” she says. “If there’s enough of them left. And if someone alive still remembers you.”
He’d made a habit, over the year since he’d lost her, to devote some time each night to her. He’s never been more thankful of that.
“I never forgot you.”
There’s something almost sad, in her eyes. Just for a moment.
“I know,” she says, and leans over to kiss his cheek. Her lips are cold.
“I saw you jump out off your truck,” she says, as they make it back to the highway. “We were quite a ways behind, but I did see you.” The way she says it makes it sound like they’ll be having a conversation about it later.
“If you knew them.” For all that they often argued, and got on each other’s nerves, they’d grown as tight as any family. Taako, who liked to insist he didn’t care about anything even as he patiently taught Angus how to start a fire. Merle, who played up the weird old man role even as her carefully stitched up every cut, who talked about God like he was an old friend, who could look at the world and still believe. Angus, who carried around a book about a kid cop around like it was a manual, who grew up faster than any kid should have to but still always made sure to mind his Ps and Qs. And then the more recent additions too, Killian and Carey, each strong but stronger together, Carey still so full of playfulness even now, Killian the bravest person he knew. They’d been looking for their friend when they joined them, and they never did find her but no one’s brought up them splitting off to keep looking in months.
“If you knew them,” he repeats. “You’d know it was worth it.”
And Julia nods, and points at a black jeep, someone sitting at the wheel.
“I can understand that.”
The person in the front seat waves out the window, and Julia waves back.
“Kravitz will make sure we catch up to your friends,” she says, and quickly steps in front of him so she can beat him to the door, opening it and gesturing him inside with a little flourish. It’s something they used to do, opening doors and pulling out chairs, some strange mix of chivalry and competition. One of their ways of saying ‘we’re a team, we’re a matched set, we’re in love.’
It’s so familiar, in this unfamiliar world. He looks at her and thinks that for so long he’s been barely treading water, and now he’s finally, finally back on solid ground. Solid ground means he can make a stand here. Solid ground means somewhere he can build.
His dead wife holds the car door open for him, and he kisses her hand as he passes her. Taako would question it, Merle would thank his God. But Magnus… Magnus just holds Julia’s hand, something he never thought he would get to do again. And he doesn’t question and he doesn’t thank. He lets himself exist here, in this moment. No past, no future. He holds his wife’s hands and pulls her in for a kiss and he lets himself believe in this world again, this world and the people in it. He lets his ribcage swell with it, until every beat of his heart strums with purpose.
Magnus is a protector, see. And if he gets a second chance to do right by Julia, by his wife… Well then. Maybe they can earn a second chance for this world, too.
Are you kidding? I hate it. You and your “I believe in Rick Grimes.” You made it sound like I single-handedly stopped Negan… I didn’t and you know it. You’re only making things worse. Seriously. I shaved my head and grew my beard so I’d have a little peace. This crap is starting to spread into Alexandria now. It’s almost as bad as it is here sometimes. And besides… Things would have definitely turned out differently if you hadn’t taken over and turned this place around. Me? I believe in Maggie Greene.
You know that little space between “girlfriend” and “girl friend?” That’s the Friendzone. As potentially depressing as it is to say, I consider myself to be an expert on the art friendzoning–for it is after all an art form. Sometimes I friedzone, and I don’t even know it’s happening–let alone the poor guy. (That’s how good I am.)
The Friendzone is the place where we corral the men we don’t completely want to date, but we still want them in our lives. As I mentioned in “Laws of Attraction,” each person we surround ourselves with sustains attractive qualities, even if said person isn’t necessarily attractive to our specific tastes. These are the people we friendzone.
Mr. Collins is the perfect example of a man stuck in the Friendzone. As ridiculous as the man is, he found himself in a rather good situation at the service of Lady Catherine de Bourgh, though he didn’t have much else to recommend himself with. His manners were unpolished, thought not necessarily offensive (unless you’re Mr. Darcy and he skips social protocol by addressing you first–the impertinence!).
Poor Mary Bennet should have been his bride, possibly the only woman in the book who could’ve improved him in both manners and mind–rather than the toleration and coexistence that resulted from his union with Charlotte Lucas.
Most guys obtain female friends in the hopes of the relationship evolving into something a little more…physical? Sure. Girls can have guy friends (though personally, I’ve never been able to successfully accomplish it). But the difference is that once a guy is deemed a “friend,” it’s very difficult to move up into the ranks of “boyfriend.”
Such a girl has deemed a guy suitable of being her personal confidant, but she doesn’t necessarily find him attractive enough to actually date. So instead, he is situated firmly in the Friendzone, where he must listen to all her problems (including boys problems), but alas, he reaps none of benefits of being the boyfriend.
There are the occasional exceptions–the ”He was here all along!” stories. But I’ve never experienced such a moment myself. My friend Katie had that moment with her boyfriend Rob. Junior year of high school, they were set up by our other friend’s boyfriend, Rich. Everything started out sweet, all those adorably long text messages that you get in the beginning of a relationship–still shaving above the knee, if you know what I mean. But when she graduated a year early and moved away to college, she wanted to see what else was out there.
It took her a few months to realize what has been my daily struggle–good men are hard to find, so when you do find one, hold on to him. She bounced between frat party to frat party and kept finding the same sort of guy: well dressed in J. Crew, but with little interest in any serious intention of a relationship. (”I don’t want to be a traitor to my generation and all, but I just don’t get how guys dress today.” No words better encapsulate my sentiments about basic-looking frat boys.) After experiencing the horror of what it is to be single at a school dominated by the Greek system, Rob and Katie got back together and are still dating. (I suspect a serious proposal imminently.)
Returning to the idea of a friendzoned guy not receiving the perks of a boyfriend–is this why guys get so pissed about being friendzoned? Because believe me, I can’t say I’ve ever received positive feedback from friendzoning. Sometimes I get frustrated–just because I’m nice to a guy and want to spend time talking with him doesn’t mean that I have to like him as more than a friend. Can’t a girl just be nice without having any ulterior motive?
This is where the stereotype arises that men and women can’t be friends–have you ever seen What If? with Daniel Radcliffe? (He plays a British med student–because having a British accent wouldn’t make him desirable enough, they had to make him a doctor, too.) Are all male friends secretly waiting in the shadows, hoping for a status upgrade to boyfriend?
I think something many men don’t know (or don’t consider) about the Friendzone is that if you’re there, she’s already taking you into consideration as “boyfriend material.” The difference is that you didn’t make the cut. This means she said “no” when she could’ve said “yes.” (I realize that’s harsh, but i’s the truth.) So as a compromise, she now gets to keep you with all your wit and whimsy, while continuing to look around for Mr. Right–or in my case, Mr. Darcy.
I often feel bad for men. In my personal experience, it’s much more common for a man to be the friendzonee, rather than the friendzoner. Men have to put up with a lot of crap from us fickle women.
One of my best friends is firmly set on me marrying a kid we went to high school with. Granted, he’s adorable and very deserving of his senior award for “Nicest Guy,” but I’m not as certain she is that he’s my Mr. Darcy. I love to talk with him, and and he’s always available to listen to me, but I’m just not convinced that I feel “that way” about him. And if I’m not sure, then obviously I’m going to keep looking for something I’m sure of.
I hope that I’m being clear that we women don’t friendzone for no reason. If you know that you’ve been friendzoned, it’s not because she doesn’t care. Once she knew it wouldn’t work or that there was no chemistry, she didn’t want to lead you on and hurt your feelings.
It’s not intentionally bitchy–she’s just being honest. There is no ulterior motive for telling a guy “Hey, I’m just not that into you.” It’s saving both parties time and energy they could be spending with someone who could potentially be their Mr. Darcy or Elizabeth Bennet.
I started this post thinking I’d shed some light on friendzoning, and I hope I’ve done at least that. (Though, I don’t think I’ve quite gotten to the root of why it happens so often in my own relationships.) I have to believe that I friendzone for a reason. I’m not intentionally hurting anyone’s feelings, and in reality, I’m saving you precious time that you could be using to actually find a girl who loves all your little quirks that I just couldn’t get past.
Think about Lizzy and Mr. Collins. She rejected him, and that allowed him to move on to Charlotte–a woman who could accept him for what he was. A fundamental part of the friendzone is the unwavering resolve to not settle for something that is less than what we want.
At times, I’ll admit, it can be an option used too frequently–an eject button if a relationship moves too fast or we start to have doubts. I’m certainly guilty of overusing it myself. But the main takeaway is to ensure that both parties involved can find a happier ending, and isn’t that what we all want? Isn’t that why we date?
The point of dating is not to just keep on dating; it’s to find love. We date so that after the twists and turns of life, the unreciprocated “I love you”’s, that weird guy who you went out with that one time who braided his beard, after all the no’s and uncertainty, we may all find a happiness that equates that of Miss Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy’s epic affair of the heart.
“I play the drums on the subway for about three hours per day. It’s like the matrix down here. A lot of bad energy. Everyone is rushing and tense and people don’t like to look at each other. So I’m trying to spread some positivity and keep people out of the zombie zone. Yesterday I was singing some Bob Marley and a man screamed at me to stop playing. I think he was bothered by my light. He got too close to the sun.“