Bed bath and beyond chandler az

Bed Bath and Beyond

2016.04.07 20:15 sendmebearpics Bed Bath and Beyond

Stories and advice from Bed Bath and Beyond, plus other stuff. We don't care about stock stuff here

2021.01.14 22:39 zoomermoney BBBY

Stock talk about Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (BBBY) and Buy Buy Baby. HODL.

2023.06.07 21:49 Anonymoustrope My Cat's Issues-please help

I adopted my senior cat from the shelter a year and a half ago. You could tell she was abused before she made it to the shelter. It took her a few months to get acclimated to me and my house. Now, she is 100% comfortable with me and has been for the past year or so. She has always had bathroom issues since I adopted her. For the first few months I chalked it up to her adjusting to her new living situation. However, the problem never got better. She won't pee or poop in her litterbox. I've changed the litter, I've changed the lotterboxes to different types, I've changed the location of the litterboxes, I've had 2-5 litterboxes in my 1300 square foot home for just one cat. I've tried changing the litter daily and then changing it every few days to see if that was the issue. None of this has helped. I started having to lock her in the bathroom at night or when I'm gone with just her litterbox because she's ruined my couch, my rug, and my drywall with her pee and poop. She used the litterbox some when she was locked up but now she completely refuses to use it at all. She'll poop or pee beside it before she actually uses it. I've taken her to multiple vets in the past year (no small feat since she has to be strongly medicated for any vet to touch her since she's extremely aggressive to everyone but me). I've spent between $4,000 to $5,000 on different foods, recommended ultrasounds and x-rays, and different litters and litterboxes for all of it to not work. That doesn't even include everything I've spent fixing the drywall or getting new furniture because the old furniture was beyond salvageable (leather couch that I couldn't get the smell out of no matter what I tried.) There's nothing medically wrong with her. At this point Im thinking of just euthanizing her. She won't make it at the shelter again. She was there for 2 years before I adopted her and she's a senior with bath issues and aggressiveness. I honestly just don't know what to do with her anymore. I can't spend any more money on her. I've spent more helping her than I can even handle alone. I just can't take it anymore. I feel like I've done all that I can feasibly do with no results.
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2023.06.07 21:24 Jakeandacamera Studying for PPL in August (Birthday Present to Myself)

I bet this has been asked a 1000 times but any of your help is greatly appreciated!
I am studying to get my PPL in August for my birthday, I’ve always wanted to be a pilot and was even in a program when I was younger but parents ran out of cash past my first couple hours of flight.
My question is what do you recommend for study guides? Should I also be spending time in simulators?
I’m not sure if I’d want to do this professionally but I do have one friend that’s a flight instructor nearby and another that’s a private jet pilot
They both expressed that they’re willing to help me but I don’t know how to leverage that help, any ideas?
Also the reason I’m studying now is that I want to get my PPL for under 10k if possible in Phoenix AZ. How do you think I could achieve that beyond just studying?
Thank you call again I’m looking forward to joining you all in the skies!!
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2023.06.07 21:22 KeeganTroye [Event] The State of Rwanda 2024-2026

Rwandan Statistics

2024 – 132,305
2026 – 182 231
Due to pledged Rwandan support and increased hostilities in the Kivu region, as well as issues in Burundi stemming from tensions between the governments of Rwanda and Burundi resulting in lowered service delivery in Burundi there was an increase of 49,926 refugees into Rwanda.
Energy Production
2024 – 421 MW
2026 – 515 MW
2025 saw large gains in power predominantly from the diverting of energy from the Rusizi III Hydropower dam from the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Burundi but further energy production improvements were limited with long-term energy plans aimed further ahead.
% of Agriculture
2024 – 75% non-productive subsistence farming
2026 – 71% non-productive subsistence farming
Current non-aggressive policies have proven ineffective at reducing subsistence farming.

Projects Ongoing

  • Peat to Methane Power Renovations enter their final year– as the existing infrastructure is already in place and the technology is well developed and inexpensive estimates put completion by Q1 2027.
  • North Akanyaru Peat-Fired Power Plant broke ground in late 2024 under development by the Punj Lloyd Group (PLG) since then construction has moved forward sporadically due to intermittent funding over concerns between Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Construction is once again moving forward and should be operational by Q2 2028.
  • More successfully the Bugarama Natural Gas Power Plant has received positive private investment reaching 30% completion it will be a landmark in independent energy for Rwanda and Africa as a continent.
  • The Kigali Electrification Plan which started off slowly has sped up dramatically as more and more infrastructure and local logistics chains have expanded with the growing demand. Government has maintained current investment and electrification as of Q1 2026 is at a very impressive 34% of public transport, mostly due to the growing confidence in Rwandan power distribution.
  • After one year since full construction has moved ahead on the Green City Kigali project the challenges on what is not just an African first but a field lacking even internationally has led to hiccups delaying the completion of the project to 2030. Foreign and tourist interest has renewed government confidence to build two more simultaneous expansions at half the size of the main project due to be completed by 2033.
  • The second and final phase of the Kigali Urban Transport Improvement (KUTI) aims to finish construction by Q4 2026 as the city has seen a heavy infrastructure overhaul to both support the electrification of public transport and also push toward non-motorized transport facilities through various international charities aiming to distribute bicycles to the poor.
  • With funding from Libertad Ventures the Tanzania-Rwanda Isaka–Kigali Standard Gauge Railway began construction in late 2024– the standard gauge rail which is planned to stretch from the inland container depot at Isaka, in the Kahama Rural District of Shinyaga Region Tanzania for 571 kilometers through Rusumo and ending finally in Kigali. Time to completion remains on track for four years of construction putting the project at halfway to completion.

Projects Completed

  • With the upgrades to nearly a dozen hospitals around the country to improve access to to teaching facilities and spur the creation of healthcare professionals under the National Strategy for Health Professions Development (2030) the government managed to hit all targets on overhauling the medical facilities and with foreign Chinese funding providing the necessary equipment and technical training for local staff. The Minister of Health Dr Daniel Ngamije instituted a new educational programme for nurses and doctors to pursue part-time studies of healthcare fields– pointing out the difficulty in developing nations to dedicate the years of study without the financial support in more developed nations this programme has been designed to allow and support Rwandans in their efforts to financially support their educations.
  • Included in these upgrades is the renovation of the Masaka District Hospital in cooperation with Rwanda’s Chinese allies the hospital has finally opened its doors tripling in beds it can now more fully service the community with the introduction of various specialities in the hospital. The government has already asked the People’s Republic of China to consider a second renovation to the hospital with the goal of adding an additional 700 beds and providing state-of-the-art medical technology that will make Rwanda a regional center for medical treatment in Africa.
  • The MIDIMAR Agriculture Cooperative reached 90% penetration in refugee camps across the country bringing these refugees into a government-sponsored assistance programme– this has allowed these small agricultural holdings and livestock to use modern techniques and development to evolve beyond subsistence for those involved. Magofarms and Eza Neza Ltd two start-ups engaged in proof-of-concept work in the refugee communities have now begun scaling up development on a national scale.
  • Through the start-up grants offered by MIDIMAR and the UN Environment Programme’s Share the Road Initiative and the Global Green Growth Institute multiple local companies have begun producing Recycled Bicycle companies using plastic waste to provide cheap biodegradable bicycles to the various refugee camps with companies moving to production in Kigali to service the poor with transportation in conjunction with the Kigali Urban Transport Improvement projects success at providing safe non-motorized road access for the city.
  • The RZipper National Drone Delivery Partnership has been a massive success in urban areas providing fast and affordable deliveries without relying on and tearing down local road infrastructure with heavy delivery vehicles– the second generation of ZipLine drones are more economical and nearly silent and the addition of the Rwandan surveillance system which has been controversial has proven to be invaluable to law enforcement agencies who have begun integrating the constant air surveillance into their everyday use. Viebeg Medical has provided their logistical artificial intelligence framework services in conjunction with RZipper’s medical contracts keeping costs low and medicine and medical technology constantly up-to-date and stocked as necessary reducing overhead immensely.

New Projects

  • Pushing forward the new Safe-At-Night Initiative, Inspector General Dan Munyuza announced that it is now a national priority to ensure Kigali is the safest nation in Africa addressing crime and inequality in a fair but just practice. The Safe-At-Night Initiative would see a reorganization from the ground up on Rwanda’s approach to crime starting with investment in the Ruhengeri National Police College to add a further development programme that would be required all officers ranked at Captain or higher excluding Senior Management to undergo a one-year advanced training course to be developed in conjunction with Rwanda’s international allies– the course will focus on community engagement, corruption, internal management, and public perception. The police force will be expanded by 25% of its current pre-reorganization manpower with 10% of officers to be moved to Social And Welfare Services as joint coordination officers with both the police department and Social and Welfare. As a pilot project various departments in Kigali will be receiving non-optional body cameras for non-commissioned officers equaling roughly 30% of the police force in Kigali. All electric public transport will be equipped with new security observation equipment and a new surveillance task force will be created to more efficiently monitor the new systems.
  • In the agriculture industry Minister Ildephonse Musafiri has announced that following the success of the MIDMAR Agriculture Cooperative the government will be implementing a National Agriculture Cooperative (NAC) that will be slowly phased in over the following year wherein all private agriculture projects not registered as commercial entities will be placed under local government cooperatives to incorporate these entities into the nation’s GDP and provide support to scale the operations above unproductive subsistence-level farms which currently accounts for 75% of agricultural production
  • With the added funding from Libertad Ventures for the Tanzania-Rwanda Isaka–Kigali Standard Gauge Railway, Rwanda will pursue former independent financing options for the Kigali-Rubavu Extension that will allow future expansion into the Eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo should relationships improve. In addition to improve infrastructure capabilities in the area an RZipper Depo facility will be built to assist with humanitarian aid given the highly unstable nature of the area.


The 2024 elections for Rwanda concluded on October 12th at the 23rd Rwandese Patriotic Front congress where President Kagame earned 96.4% of the vote being elected for his fourth term as President elect of Rwanda-- Kagame who has served as President for nearly thirty years spoke to his party following the confirmation of his elections and stating that this will be his last term. Kagame had already spoken that he did not intend to be ruler-for-life when congress voted to allow the president to run for a fourth term in 2017.
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2023.06.07 21:21 calyssat Lease takeover in North Austin, 5 min from The Domain!

Lease takeover in North Austin, 5 min from The Domain!
Hi all! I’m looking for someone to take over my lease at Milo Apartments, right next to The Domain. Rent is $1280/month, and with apt monthly fees & water the monthly rent is usually around $1380/month total (fluctuates based on your water usage). Electric is billed separately through Utilities, and wifi is also separate.
Unit is a 1 bed 1 bath, roughly 550 SQ FT. Pet friendly apartment but they will ask for a pet interview for dogs before moving in (I had an ESA cat, so I never had to do any of that myself though). It’s a big complex but the building this unit is in is located right next to the dog park, the mail room, the pool, and the gym & yoga room, so everything was always in very close proximity to walk to. It’s open parking so LOTS of ample parking spaces, but nothing covered. The complex also prohibits solicitors so no random people knocking on the door or anything allowed. It’s a pretty family friendly complex in my experience, and there’s also a 7 mile hike & bike trail connected to the complex.
I’m already moved out since I moved in with my boyfriend, and the lease ends September 21st with the option to renew if you want to extend the lease date. Just need someone to take over the lease for me so I don’t have to pay rent for two apartments.
submitted by calyssat to u/calyssat [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 21:18 CandidPicture1084 Lodges Sublet for July and or rest of June

Hello! I am looking to sublet my off-campus apt. at the Lodges ASAP for the rest of June and or the month of July.
The apt is 4 bed 4 bath, you will get one bed, one bath, and one walk-in closet. The apt is furnished with kitchen and in-unit laundry.
It is very quiet with most of my roommates away for summer. I am open to discussing rent and being flexible due to the urgency of the situation.
Please dm if interested! :)
submitted by CandidPicture1084 to unh [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 21:14 the_flys_fly List of open mysteries (part 2)

In no particular order:
Who threw Boyd the rope?
How did Martin know about Boyd’s wife?
What’s the other stuff beyond the monsters?
Who’s the “they” Martin was talking about and what’s their connection to music? We know about the ballerina, is that “they?”
Why did the trees move when Victor measured them?
Who was the voice on the radio?
Why was there a dead crow in the monster cave?
What does the symbol mean and why does Jade keep seeing it and what happened to Christopher?
Why did Jade have a vision of the dummy that was in the monster cave?
Who are the voices Sara heard?
Why did the voices tell Sara to do those things?
What moved the tent Sara and Boyd were in?
Who is the boy in white?
Who are the ghost children Tabitha sees?
What’s up with the lighthouse and the foghorn?
What’s up with the spiders and Boyd seeing his wife?
Why is the food running out now?
Why are the leaves changing now?
How did the boy in white predict the future and tell Victor that Tabitha is coming to the monster cave?
Why is there a non-monster but gross-looking child-thing in the monster cave?
What’s up with the rock structure in the monster cave that Tabitha recreates to see the kids and why was Ethan, who’s never seen it, replicating it on the porch?
How did Elgin know the town was a bad place on the bus?
Why was Jim’s bracelet from his wife in the town?
What’s up with Brian and Kelly and Boyd’s old friend Brian Kelly?
Why did the monsters leave the rod in Kelly’s head and not kill her after they were done with Brian and why haven’t we seen Brian’s body?
What’s up with the worms being gone inside the monster and the bile being the only liquid?
What was attacking Elgin in the bath and why?
Why do we still have 3 separate subreddits for this show?
submitted by the_flys_fly to FromTVShow [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 21:14 Mistersunnyd Is my experience normal when cutting to a low body fat percentage?

I’ve (26M, 6’0”) been slowly cutting my weight down for the past year, going from 181lbs last June down to 156lbs a month ago from a combination of diet and HIIT.
This past month, I decided that I wanted to cut down to 10% body fat and then start doing a lean bulk. Looking at my progress, I’ve been losing almost two pounds a week for the past month, so I should be at almost a thousand calorie deficit (eating at 1700 right now and weighing 149lbs).
I workout daily, doing three days of cardio and four days of lifting per week. For the last two weeks though, things have taken a turn. I’m still losing weight, but I feel really awful. I have no energy, libido, and my cravings are insane. When I get out of bed or even a chair, I get dizzy and see stars. I’m constantly cold and grumpy, and I just want to give up on the cut and working out in general.
I have a Dexa scan tomorrow to see where I’m at body fat wise, but no matter what, I’m not sure I can keep going on this cut beyond this week. I don’t think being at 10% body fat would cause these side effects, so did I just cut too aggressively? Thanks in advance!
submitted by Mistersunnyd to loseit [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 21:14 the_flys_fly List of open mysteries (part 2)

In no particular order:
Who threw Boyd the rope?
How did Martin know about Boyd’s wife?
What’s the other stuff beyond the monsters?
Who’s the “they” Martin was talking about and what’s their connection to music? We know about the ballerina, is that “they?”
Why did the trees move when Victor measured them?
Who was the voice on the radio?
Why was there a dead crow in the monster cave?
What does the symbol mean and why does Jade keep seeing it and what happened to Christopher?
Why did Jade have a vision of the dummy that was in the monster cave?
Who are the voices Sara heard?
Why did the voices tell Sara to do those things?
What moved the tent Sara and Boyd were in?
Who is the boy in white?
Who are the ghost children Tabitha sees?
What’s up with the lighthouse and the foghorn?
What’s up with the spiders and Boyd seeing his wife?
Why is the food running out now?
Why are the leaves changing now?
How did the boy in white predict the future and tell Victor that Tabitha is coming to the monster cave?
Why is there a non-monster but gross-looking child-thing in the monster cave?
What’s up with the rock structure in the monster cave that Tabitha recreates to see the kids and why was Ethan, who’s never seen it, replicating it on the porch?
How did Elgin know the town was a bad place on the bus?
Why was Jim’s bracelet from his wife in the town?
What’s up with Brian and Kelly and Boyd’s old friend Brian Kelly?
Why did the monsters leave the rod in Kelly’s head and not kill her after they were done with Brian and why haven’t we seen Brian’s body?
What’s up with the worms being gone inside the monster and the bile being the only liquid?
What was attacking Elgin in the bath and why?
Why do we still have 3 separate subreddits for this show?
submitted by the_flys_fly to FromSeries [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 21:13 Future_Ad_3485 Valley of the Unknown Part Twenty-Six: A Bittersweet Ending

Ember played with the boys on the floor, their hands reaching for him. Pouring over the files of the latest security breach on our magical borders, my eyes fell on Alex playing with his new friends outside. Waving at me, Jack embraced me from behind. Kissing the top of my head, it felt as if something big was going to happen today. A tender blush rose to my cheeks, my hand cupping his face.
“We need to raid an outpost today. Hopefully we can get information on the main headquarters.” He informed me warmly, biting my neck. Drinking his fill, my crippling anxiety stole any joy it normally would have given me. Missions like these frightened me, every cell in me wanted to turn into a raven and fly away for the day. Finishing up his breakfast, he set down an armored filled dress with leggings. Salford whispered something in his ear, sliding him a pair of car keys. Rising to my feet, I took my new outfit to our bedroom. Changing quickly, the dress felt heavy on my frame, the leggings seemed to be lined with chain mail. Pulling my hair into a ponytail, I ran into Jack on the way out. Embracing me lovingly, the keys dangled off of his fingers. Feeling his simple black suit, a light armor lined it. Chewing on my lips, our friends waited for us in matching black armor.
“We are ready to go.” Raven announced proudly, my eyes falling on Salford. “Salford said that he was going to watch the boys.” Adjusting their backpacks, weapons clanged in their bags. Guilt gnawed at me, the concept of putting them in danger sickening. My lips parted in protest, Raven raising her finger.
“We are coming. Those bastards killed my family and they are going to pay.” She asserted firmly, pulling her hair into a ponytail. “Besides, I want to back my friend up.” A deep sadness haunted her eyes, my hands cupping hers. A gentle but broken smile dimmed her features, silent tears staining her cheeks.
“I appreciate it and I apologize for not being there to stop it. I ruined everyone’s life by not being there.” I choked out shamefully, bowing my head. “I failed you and everyone else. I will make it up to you guys, I fucking promise you that.” Grabbing my shoulder, her other hand lifted up my chin.
“You were busy doing your own shit. I heard you showed up, girl!” She chatted pleasantly, my shaking fingers wiping away her tears. “You have a place where humans and monsters get along with ease. Have you been sleeping? You look like hell.” A deadpan expression appeared on my face, her last comment ticking me off slightly. Brushing it off, Jack cleared his throat. Placing me on his back, he carried me to a delivery van. Hopping off of his back, I let myself in. The Tainsworth twins sat in the front with their armor on, Raven climbing in with Ruby. Messing with her curls, Raven basically sat on top of her. Adjusting my bell sleeves, the leather hugged my slender arms. Oppressive silence hung between us, Ruby refusing to look at me. Folding her arms across her chest, something needed to be said. Choosing not to say it, the time passed horribly slow. The van screeched to a halt, Jack pulling me into a hidden compartment. The door squeaked open, heavy footfalls echoed in the back.
“Who are you?” A gruff voice demanded, Ruby speaking up. Clearing her throat, her voice tone seemed rather bitter.
“We wish to join your ranks. I can’t stand vampires, especially their fucking queen. She could die for all I care.” She snapped hotly, truth oozing from her words. “She is hiding somewhere in this van.” Horror rounded our eyes, her betrayal striking us in the heart.” Opening the compartment hiding us, she took a step back. The hunters slapped handcuffs on us all, Ruby grinning evilly ear to ear. Wicked laughter rumbled in her throat, her head cocking back.
“I have been working with them the entire time. There is no information, just the home of your executions.” She gloated sensually, the twins cursing in her direction. “I am not even a teenager. I am a witch who has been alive for centuries. Can I tell you a secret? I am the leader of the hunters. Everyone else was just a puppet.” Sighing with satisfaction, she circled us. Tears welled up in my eyes, Raven sobbed softly next to me. Pulling a gun from her pocket, Ruby shot her in the head. Time slowed, the twins crying out. Emptying her gun into them, a broken wail burst from my lips. Their bodies dropped forward, ruby dripping from the holes in the middle of their foreheads. Jack twitched darkly next to me, my mind officially broken. His bangs hid his eyes, his claws extended from his fingernails. Unlocking his handcuffs, he pretended to get madder as he worked on mine. The metal clanged to the ground, Ruby’s eyes widening with terror. Tears blurred my vision, my scythe sliding into my eager palms.
“You fucking bitch!” I screamed vehemently, pacing back and forth. Reapers held their souls in their palms, all hope of saving them was gone. “You are going to pay.” Shrugging her shoulders, she leaned forward.
“How pathetic for the queen to lose her cool so quickly?” She taunted cruelly, Jack fumed dangerously next to me. “You can’t damage me. You can kill this body and all I have to do is find another one. Angel of darkness! Kill all of my hunters and give me their lives.” The hunters holding us hostage dropped to the ground, thousands of white glowing balls flowing into her. Panic gripped my face, reapers burst from the ground surrounding her. Death himself popped up next to me, one raise of his hand stopping them.
“I am going to bring these souls to Heaven. Take her out.” He commanded urgently, the balls floating into a worn leather sack hanging off of his wrists. “They are all dead. You did all that you could. Good luck.” The last ball of light floated into the sack, a snap of his finger signaling his disappearance. The three of us remained, a ball of shadowy energy building in her palm. A low hissing noise echoed around us, the delivery truck fading to the base of a dead twisted tree. Violet grass danced around me, a chill running up my spine. Gripping my scythe tightly, rage mixed with depression. Sauntering out from behind the tree, a single wave of her hand sent us a couple of yards away. Gone was the armor she wore, a tight leather number hugging her body. Violet needles rested in between her fingers, dead man’s blood dripped onto the grass.
“I suppose you want to hear about my tale and why I am doing this?” She mused with a wicked chuckle, licking the blood off her hand. “I have a bomb ticking away. The lovely thing will release a virus that will kill all of the monsters in the world. Humans will be infected with a magical mind control. Don’t worry about your friends. I killed them because they were annoying me. Do you know how hard it was to pretend to be friends with you and arrange your fucking role? I made a deal with your father to kill you. How did you like the little bonfire?” Wanting to charge at her, Jack held me back. Raising my scythe into the attack position, the corner of my lips curled into a snarl.
“You freaking bitch.” I growled through gritted teeth, leaping into the air. Raising her hands in the air, thousands of needles floated behind her. Flicking her wrists, the rain of needles tore through my body. Jack would die, my boots pushing off the branch. Covering Jack with my body, the needles struck me instead. A burning sensation coursed through my veins, inky sludge pouring from my eyes. Cracks lined her face as needles struck the tree, an idea coming to mind. Jack trembled underneath me, his eyes falling on the blackened veins coursing lining my porcelain skin.
“Shoot her in the hands. She can’t throw her needles if her wrists can’t move.” I wheezed, coughing up blood. Dragging him behind the tree, my chains blocked the needles heading towards Jack. His hand quaked, his bullets hitting everywhere but the target. Lining my free arm up with his, my hand steadied his.
“I can’t!” He protested with wet eyes, his mental state beyond repair. “My friends are dead. My friends are dead! She used to be my friend!” Shimmering teardrops crashed to the grass, the grass darkening to an inky black. Confusion dawned on his face the moment I held his gun underneath his eyes. Teardrops flooded the chamber, my hand guiding his hand to the level of his eyes. Getting behind him, I clicked the safety. Aiming for her palm, a quick yank sent a blackening bullet up her arm. A wave of relief washed over me the moment her needles glitched, the muzzle of his gun aimed for her other palm. Pulling the trigger, the bullet shattered her other arm. Dropping to her side, cracks echoed in the air. The cracks on her face had deepened, my attention turning towards her tree. Swinging my scythe into the tree, her shrill shrieks filled the air as flames raced into the center of the tree. Water snaked around their branches, my chains clinking their way around the thick trunk. Mouthing a silent spell, the needles floated out of me.
“Water from my heart! Flames of the Dead! Chains from my master! I call upon thee to burn the tree down, drown it from the inside. Choke the shit out of it.” I ordered sharply, each word hurting. “Final spell, turn my blood into venom for a witch.” Raising my right hand, a bell rang the moment the tip of my scythe made contact. Closing my fist, the needles dug themselves into the tree. Flames devoured her skin, cold water filled her lungs. Chains snaked up her body, a sea of fiery orange coloring her skin. My vision blurred, Jack snapping out of his paralyzed state. Raising his gun, a bullet whistled into the tree. The bullet being the last thing we needed, the tree decayed to dust along with her. The dimension crumbled away, my legs giving out. Leaning against the destroyed van, fresh tears flowed freely at the sight of our dead friends. Jack picked up one of their backpacks, his tears soaking the top of the bag. Pulling out a medical bag, he ripped out a needle filled with milky liquid. Jamming the needle into my leg, the effects of the venom dying down. Pressing my ear to the ground, an ominous ticking echoed in my ear. Tick, tick, tick! Feeling around the dirt, a metal door clanged underneath my hand. One look in Jack’s direction, he understood. Spinning the rusty handle, he lifted up the door. Gathering the rest of my strength, I popped in. Shutting the door behind me, the lock sealed my fate. Jack protested outside, the top refusing to budge, my heart sinking at the only option. The only way to stop the bomb was to set it off in a dome, the spell caster having to be in the center of it. Praying that my reaper side would keep me alive even Jack had to know that he didn’t stand a chance. Using my scythe as a walking stick, my feet moved with adrenaline. Sniffing the air, the sweet smell told me where to go. Limping through the twisted concrete halls, my breath hitched at the orange angry metal ball. Taking a deep breath, the image of my dead friends and that town I called home flashed in my mind. Pushing through, I sank to my knees. The last of my power built around my hands, a sad smile haunting my face the moment I placed my palms on the surface. A water dome glittered over me, reaper’s flames reinforcing it. Channeling the rest of my flames into core, the metal rattled violently. Preparing for the worst, a giant raven folded its wings around me.
“I will protect you no matter what.” Dr. Death promised warmly, his energy providing me safety as the chemical blasted everywhere but us. “Dissolve the poison.” The colorful particles lightened to a snow white, everything hitting me at once. Ruffling my hair, he disappeared back into my mind. Jack sprinted in, his shattered expression speaking volumes.
“I am so sorry I couldn’t save them.” I blubbered uncontrollably, falling to the floor. “I don’t deserve you. You should just k-” Rushing over to me, he clutched me desperately to his chest. Tears flowed freely, neither of us able to move. Laying back, the clarified chemicals reminding me of snow. A tortured wail burst from my lips, my quaking fingers clinging to his jacket. Saphiro and Hazard skidded to a stop, their faces dropping at the sight of us. Shaking our shoulders to see if we were alive, gracious grins brightened their features at us breathing. Their words faded in and out, a rough darkness enveloping me in it’s sea of madness.
Jerking awake, an eager Alex and Hazel hovered by the white hospital bed. Covering my eyes from the blinding lights, their arms embraced me from either side. Eloise smothered Jack in love, his numb expression matching mine. Bursting into tears, their smiling faces taunted me. Holding me tighter, his words faded in and out. Jack screamed for everyone to leave him alone. Kissing Hazel on the head, Alex dragged her out. Walking over to my bed, his little sister sulked out. Crawling in next to me, his head rested on my chest. Wail after wail burst from his lips, my slender hands being the only thing comforting him. These were his friends and now they were gone. The fault was all mine, guilt eating me raw from the inside. Hours passed like this, him going numb then screaming with raw emotional agony. Swinging his feet over the edge of the bed, he tugged on his boots.
“Are you coming?” He asked hoarsely, offering me his hand. “We need to go home and raise our family.” Accepting his hand cautiously, he yanked me to feet. Placing me on his back, the look in his eyes begged for me to rest my head on his back. Walking into the hall, he ignored the pleading nurses. Saphiro blocked his path, his depressed smile not helping the situation. Tugging anxiously on his navy vest, my mind chose to focus on the midnight black blouse underneath his vest. Clearing his throat, clammy sweat drenched his skin.
“Come with me.” He begged kindly, Jack seconds from saying no. “Please. I have a couple of things to show you.” Caving to his request, we walked for a solid ten minutes to the cemetery. Three caskets waited to be lowered to the ground, Jack dropping me. Struggling to my feet, my heart shattered at him draping his arms over the coffin. Whispering a prayer to them, he took a step back. Pulling me close to his waist, his sobs grew louder as they lowered the caskets into the ground. Death popped up behind us with three letters in his hands, his head bowed in respect to the dead bodies.
“These are from your friends. Call it one final letter.” He informed Jack sullenly, turning towards me. “Thank you for your services. Unfortunately, I can’t remove the curse.” Offering me his hand, my fingers curled around his hand. Shaking it once, he bowed in my direction. Pressing his palms together, a twinkle glinted in his eyes.
“Once everything settles down, we should get together to have tea. I am sorry for your loss.” He expressed serenely, understanding death but not the grief part. Snapping his fingers he was gone, an eager Jack reading the letters. Curiosity burned a bit but my inside voice told me to leave it alone. Tucking them into his pocket, he placed me on his back. Following Saphiro back into town, his crooked grin lit up his face for a quick second.
“They said not to lose you.” He chuckled softly, a bit of hope glinting in his eyes. “Time will heal my wounds.” Hundreds of eyes watched us enter back into town, my jaw dropping at the statue of the five of us. The plaque read the heroes of the dawn, the two of us unsure of what to feel. Jack thanked him profusely, Saphiro pointing to the Victorian mansion at the top of the nearby hill.
“That mansion is yours to conduct your business as well as living in it.” He promised earnestly, fresh tears flooding from my eyes. “We hope you choose this town as your home.” Jumping down, I cupped his hands. A tender blush rose to his cheeks, my real smile illuminating my features for the first time since yesterday.
“Only if you'll have me, good sir.” I returned politely, his brow cocking at my response. Alex ran up to me with the boys in his arms. Accepting them, life was okay. Please karma, grant me peace for the rest of my life.
Alex had his head buried in his work, the twins ran around the yard. Elise read in the tree, the two kiddos looking so grown up. The morning sun bathed the idyllic scene, a good five years had passed. Holding my swollen bump, two wails snapped me out of my trance. Jack stepped out with our white haired twins Sammy and Raven, the one year old girls reaching for me. Their fiery orange and red eyes glittered with love, my arms scooping them up. Wrapping his arms around my bump, Mark was due in a couple of months.
“Alex, Elise!” He barked with his trademark grin as they rushed up to him. Elise smoothed out her white summer dress, Alex adjusting his glasses in a brisk manner. An irked look greeted him, his stern gaze shutting down any protest.
“Watch the boys for us.” He ordered lightly, passing them wrapped boxes. “I need to take your sister somewhere. Boys, go in and watch a show with your uncle and aunt.” Sprinting into the house, Alex shot him a thumbs up as he followed them inside. Guiding me down the hill and through the town, his beard kept capturing my attention. Grabbing three bouquets on the way, he dragged me to the cemetery. Stopping in front of our friends' graves, he laid a bouquet on each tombstone. Dusting off his navy designer suit, my simple orange summer dress felt like a sad attempt to match him. Rubbing my back, he kissed my bump.
“We came by to tell you how things are going. Alex and Elise are learning how to drive. Yeah, that is as scary as it sounds. Sammy and Raven’s birthday happened a couple of weeks ago. They are both one year old. Crazy, isn’t it?” He chatted pleasantly, happy tears welling up in his eyes. “We have one more on the way. It’s another boy. We are going to name him Mark. I miss you dummies every fucking day. I wouldn’t have survived if you gave me that letter. Thank you.” Wiping away his tears, Sammy and Raven cooed in my arms. Kissing the top of my head, Jack guided me to the square. Sitting me down at the fountain, he took the girls in his arms. Passing me a bundle of envelopes, they were all from the townsfolk and monsters all over the world.
“Word got out about where you live and they all wanted to write their thanks.” He explained jovially, sitting down next to me. “Read them tonight and write back. They would love to hear from you.” Flicking through the pile, this was going to take a while. Popping to my feet, I could sense that Alex was getting frustrated. Walking back home, the fact that people wanted to thank me touched my heart. Opening the door, my boys bounced towards me. Dragging me to the couch, one of Alex’s shows was playing. Climbing onto the couch next to me, Jack took the other seat next to me. Hazel skipped in, her long hair grazing the worn wooden floor. Sitting down by my feet, Elvira laid on her lap. Basking in the moment, this was how life was supposed to be. Thank you for the gift of a good life. All the tragedy led to this moment. All of the scars told the tale of my twisted journey here. Jack leaned his head on my shoulder, the boys laying on my lap. Playing with their hair, I hoped sincerely that this would never end.
submitted by Future_Ad_3485 to DrCreepensVault [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 21:12 JoshAsdvgi THE POWERFUL BOY



The Seneca, one of the Iroquois nations of the Northeast, have their own version of the all-conquering little one.

A man and his wife lived with their five-year-old son in an ugly-looking lodge in the woods.
One day the woman died giving birth to another boy, who was bright and lively but no longer than a person's hand.
Thinking that the infant would not live, the father wrapped it carefully and placed it in a hollow tree outside the lodge.
After that he burned the body of the mother.
Then as he had done before, the man went hunting every day.
The five-year-old played around the lodge by himself, feeling lonely.
After a time he heard crying from the hollow tree, for the baby too was lonely,
and hungry as well.
When he discovered his little brother, the boy made him some soup from deer intestines, which the baby drank with relish.
Much stronger, the newborn crawled out of the tree, and the two played together.
The older brother made a little coat out of fawn skin; when he put it on, the baby looked like a chipmunk scampering around.
When he came home, the father noticed that the deer intestines were gone and asked the boy what he had done with them.
"Oh," said the child, "I was hungry."
Seeing a small track of very short steps around the fire, the father said, "Here are a boy's tracks.
Who is it?" So his son confessed that he had found his little brother in a hollow tree, and that he had given him soup and made him a fawn-skin coat.
"Go and bring him," said the father.
"He's shy; he won't come for anything," the boy said.
'Well, we'll catch him.
Ask him to hunt mice with you in the old stump behind the hollow tree, and I'll get him."
Gathering a great many mice, the man hid them in his clothes.
Then he walked beyond the tree and crouched down so that he looked like an old stump.
The boy went to the tree and called, "Come on, let's catch some mice."
The baby climbed out, and they rushed around the stump catching mice.
Wild with excitement, the tiny thing laughed and shouted; he had never had so much fun.
Suddenly the stump turned into a man, who caught the little one ,in his arms and ran to the lodge.
The infant screamed and struggled, but it was no use; he couldn't get away, and he would not be pacified until his father put a small club into his hand and said.
"Now hit that tree."
The baby struck a great hickory.
The tree fell.
Then he laid about him
with the club, and everything he hit at was either crushed or killed.
He was delighted and stopped crying.
Now the baby stayed with his older brother while their father went hunting.
"You must not go to the north while I'm away," the father told them.
"Bad, dangerous people live there."
But when the father had left, the tiny one said to his brother, "Oh, let's go north; I want to see what's there."
The boys started off and walked until they came to wooded, marshy ground.
Then they heard what sounded like many people calling, "My father! My fatherl" Actually they were frogs singing the frog song,
"Nohqwa! Nohqwa!"
"Oh, these people want to hurt my father!" the little boy cried.
He fixed himself a pile of red-hot stones and, hurling them at the frogs, killed everyone.
When the boys came home, their father was very angry.
"You must not go again," he said. "
And you must not go west; it's dangerous there too."
But the next day when their father had left, the little boy said, "I want to see what's in the west; let's go there."
So they traveled westward until they came to a tall pine tree, with a bed made of skins at the very top.
"That's a strange place for a bed," the little boy said to his brother.
"I'll climb up and look at it."
Up he went. In the bed at the top he found two naked, frightened children, a boy and a girl. He pinched the naked boy, who called out, "Father, Father! Some strange child has come and scared me nearly to death!"
Suddenly the voice of Thunder was heard in the far west.
It rumbled toward them faster and faster until it reached the bed in the treetop.
Raising his club, the little boy, the powerful one, struck Thunder and crushed his head, so that he fell dead to the ground.
Then the boy pinched the naked girl, which made her call, "Mother!
Mother! Some strange boy is tormenting me!" Instantly the voice of Mother Thunder sounded in the west and grew louder until she stood by the tree.
The powerful boy struck her on the head as he had done with her husband, and she fell dead.
The powerful one thought, "This Thunder boy would make a fine tobacco pouch for my father.
I'll take him home." He struck the boy with his club and then threw both children to the ground.
The two brothers went home, and the tiny one said, "Oh, Father! I have brought you a splended pouch!"
"What have you done?" the father said when he saw the dead Thunder baby.
"These ~thunders have never harmed us.
They bring rain and do us good, but now they will destroy us to revenge their children."
"Oh, they won't hurt us-I've killed the whole family," the powerful boy replied.
So the father took the skin for a tobacco pouch, but he said, "You must never go north to the country where Stone Coat lives."
The next day the older brother would not disobey his father, so the powerful boy headed north by himself.
About noon he heard the loud barking of Stone Coat's dog, which was as tall as a deer. Thinking that the master must be close by, the little boy jumped into the heart of a chestnut tree to hide.
The dog kept barking, and Stone Coat came up to look around.
"There's nothing here," he said, but the dog barked and· stared at the tree.
Finally Stone Coat struck the tree with his club and split it open.
"WVhat a strange little fellow you are," Stone Coat said, looking at the boy as he came out. "You're not big enough to fill a hole in my tooth."
"Oh, I didn't come to fill holes in your teeth. I came to go home with YOll and see how you live," said the boy.
"All right, come on," Stone Coat said, and began walking with enormous steps.
In his belt he carried two great bears, which seemed as small as squirrels.
Once in a while he would look far down and say to the boy running by his side, "You're a funny little creature!"
His lodge was huge and very long; the boy had never seen anything like it.
Stone C.oat skinned the two bears, put one before his visitor, and otok the other for himself.
"You eat this bear," he said, "or I'll eat you and him together."
"If you don't eat yours before I eat mine, may I kill you?" asked the boy.
"Oh, yes," said Stone Coat.
The little boy cut off pieces of meat, cleaned them as fast as he could, and put them into his mouth.
Then he ran out of the lodge to hide the meat.
He kept running in and out, in and out, until all the flesh of his bear had disappeared.
"You haven't finished yours yet," he said to Stone Coat.
''I'm going to kill you!"
'Wait until I show you how to slide downhill," Stone Coat said, and took him to a long, slippery hillside which ended in a cave.
Putting the boy in a wooden bowl.
Stone Coat sent him down at great speed.
But presently the powerful boy ran up the slope again.
"Where did you leave the bow!?" asked the surprised Stone Coat.
"Oh, I don't know--down there, I suppose," the boy replied.
"Well, let's see who can kick this log highest," said Stone Coat.
"You try first," said the little one.
The log was two feet thick and six feet long.
Putting his foot under it, Stone C.oat kicked the log up twice his own height.
Then the boy, slipping his foot under the log, sent it whistling through the air.
It was gone a long time.
Then it came down on Stone Coat's head and crushed him to death.
"Come here," said the boy to Stone Coat's dog.
The dog came, and the little one climbed on his back and rode home.
"Now my father will have a fine hunting dog," he said.
When the father saw the dog, he cried, "What have you done? Stone Coa t will kill us all!"
"I have killed Stone Coat.
He won't trouble us any more," replied the boy, the powerful one.
"Now, boys," said the father, "you must never go to the southwest, the gambling place."
But the next day about noon, the younger brother started walking southwest.
He came to a beautiful opening in the woods, with a lean-to at the farther end.
Sitting under the lean-to a man with a large head, much larger than a buffalo's, played dice for the heads of all who came along.
He used wild-plumpits with designs on them for dice.
Crowds of people were betting in groups of three.
When they lost, as all did, the big-headed man put the three persons to one side.
Then he played with three more, and when they lost he put them with the first three, and so on-until he decided that the number was large enough.
Then he got up and cut all their heads off.
As the boy approached, a number of people who had lost their bets were waiting to be killed.
Hope came to them all, for they sensed that this child had great orenda-power, or medicine.
The boy took his place, and the game began immediately.
When the big-headed man threw the dice, the bay caused some to remain in the dish and others to go high, so that the dice came to rest with different designs showing.
But when the boy threw, the dice turned into woodcocks, flew high, and came down as dice of the same design.
The two played until the boy won back all the people and the gambler lost his own big head, for the boy instantly cut it off.
The whole crowd shouted, "Now you must be our chief!"
The boy said, "How could a little thing like me be a chief? Maybe my father would be willing to do it; I'll ask him."
The boy went home with the story, but his father would not move to the land of gambling.
"Now," said the father, "you must never go to the east, where they play ball."
But the next day the boy traveled east until he came to a great, level country of beautiful plains.
There the Wolf and the Bear clans were playing against the Eagle, the Turtle, and the Beaver clans.
The boy took the side of the Wolf and the Bear.
"If you win," they told him, "you will own all this country."
They played, and the boy won.
"Now,"they say, ' "you are the owner. "
The powerful boy went home and told his father, "I have won all the beautiful country of the east; come and be chief of it."
His father consented and moved with his two boys to the country of the east, and there they lived.

Told by by Jeremiah Curtin and J. N. B. Hewitt around 1910.
submitted by JoshAsdvgi to Native_Stories [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 21:12 the_flys_fly List of open mysteries (part 2)

In no particular order:
Who threw Boyd the rope?
How did Martin know about Boyd’s wife?
What’s the other stuff beyond the monsters?
Who’s the “they” Martin was talking about and what’s their connection to music? We know about the ballerina, is that “they?”
Why did the trees move when Victor measured them?
Who was the voice on the radio?
Why was there a dead crow in the monster cave?
What does the symbol mean and why does Jade keep seeing it and what happened to Christopher?
Why did Jade have a vision of the dummy that was in the monster cave?
Who are the voices Sara heard?
Why did the voices tell Sara to do those things?
What moved the tent Sara and Boyd were in?
Who is the boy in white?
Who are the ghost children Tabitha sees?
What’s up with the lighthouse and the foghorn?
What’s up with the spiders and Boyd seeing his wife?
Why is the food running out now?
Why are the leaves changing now?
How did the boy in white predict the future and tell Victor that Tabitha is coming to the monster cave?
Why is there a non-monster but gross-looking child-thing in the monster cave?
What’s up with the rock structure in the monster cave that Tabitha recreates to see the kids and why was Ethan, who’s never seen it, replicating it on the porch?
How did Elgin know the town was a bad place on the bus?
Why was Jim’s bracelet from his wife in the town?
What’s up with Brian and Kelly and Boyd’s old friend Brian Kelly?
Why did the monsters leave the rod in Kelly’s head and not kill her after they were done with Brian and why haven’t we seen Brian’s body?
What’s up with the worms being gone inside the monster and the bile being the only liquid?
What was attacking Elgin in the bath and why?
Why do we still have 3 separate subreddits for this show?
submitted by the_flys_fly to FromTVEpix [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 21:07 endersgame69 Kayobi's Days Off C20

I have to admit, the structure of human societies still confused me. I learned from one of their books ‘Utopia’ that humans had long considered various ways in which their society could be made better, without suffering or poverty, starvation or disease, without want or people lording cruelly over others. Of course the word Utopia means ‘Nowhere’ so whether or not the author believed his vision was impossible, or whether he just meant his story was fictional, I couldn’t say.
Part of why this confused me is because most of the Universe was pretty quiet. There was no interstellar warfare at least. And because there was no need for ships of war, some civilizations expanded peacefully beyond their own worlds, colonizing moons, planets, even large asteroids. They even colonized space itself with roving fleets that grew over time, but which were completely unarmed save for sufficient protection against random stellar debris.
Thus more peaceful societies could create these more ‘utopian’ visions of existence with no need for a military force beyond keeping order at home.
This didn’t mean they were all ideal, some planets became dictatorial and oppressive nightmares, I’d visited a number of those, scouting before taking out a target.
Those societies all had one thing in common, bloated military budgets, they enriched the soldiers and despised the rest, and that was that.
I took pleasure in my work, removing those from life who decided one world was not enough, and more than once I wished we could target those who didn’t have galactic war ambitions. But that was against the rules, as long as it stayed to their own world, we would not interfere. They could trade, they could bargain, but if a blaster left their planet, their leadership would die. Thus most dictatorships secured themselves by limiting their ambitions.
What made human want distinct is their general disunity as a species, and the tendency toward a more stratified society. So the idea that a ‘few’ members of the community could be left starving while everybody else ate, was strange to me. So strange that it didn’t occur to me that the one doing my laundry right about now, might be left without enough to eat.
I still hadn’t forgiven him for what he did to Jin. But as I sat and watched the credits roll, I couldn’t help but think, ‘He’s making more sense, now.’
Asahi returned right around when I expected, though he was still wiping away a bloody nose, so I looked at him with a smirk and said simply, “Hentai.”
Asahi’s face turned red again but all he said was, “Uh, the laundry is done.”
“Good, just toss the bag in there and then…” I looked over the end of the couch at the clutter on the table in the kitchen, “Yeah, you’ll need to clear that off and then take out the trash.” I said, and then checked my phone.
“Right…” He mumbled, I could see he wasn’t happy about this, the way he hung his head, but he sullenly did as I said. Which was good, because not two minutes after he was returning from disposing of my trash, the pizzas arrived.
He stared dumb and wide eyed at the four square boxes and the three long boxes on top of that which held the side items I wanted. The two delivery boys gave polite little half bows as I accepted the stack and carried them to the table.
“Right, so, Asahi, you hungry or what?” I asked, and his stomach growled again.
“Wait, you’re… I can’t pay for this…” He looked with eyes like dinner plates at the feast, and he deeply inhaled to catch the scent of it all.
I shrugged. “You’re here, I have food. I may be what you call ‘gaijin’ but that doesn’t mean I’ve got no manners. You did what you needed to do and now it’s time to eat. I’m not going to shove pizza in your face hole,” I said and tapped the top box several times with the palm of my hand to beckon him over while putting my other hand on my hip, “but if you want to eat, get a paper plate, sit down, and eat.”
I opened the side dishes, mostly wings, bread sticks, cheesy things… then opened the pizza boxes.
Since I’d ordered from two places I had quite a variety, and far more than I needed. I said I felt guilty about maybe being hard on a hungry kid, even if I still think he sort of deserved it. But even so, kicking people while they’re down just isn’t my style.
I wouldn’t apologize, but that didn’t mean I wasn’t going to make it up to him, at least a little.
Asahi moved faster than I thought once his decision was made and he’d given in to his hunger, “As much as I want? Or…?” I nodded.
“I guess my eyes were bigger than my stomach on this one.” I smiled a little, “I ordered way too much. What we don’t finish, why don’t you take home?”
“Waght… far youf ferious?” He had a slize of pizza halfway into his face hole when he said that, so it came out very muffled and he tore a piece free, chewed, swallowed, and repeated himself.
“Are you serious?” He asked, his eyes had gone almost wild, like a hungry dog. “Like… you’re not making fun of me? You’re not going to like, make me beg or anything?”
I chewed my cheesy stick that I’d coated in marinara sauce and glowered over top of it at him until I could finish chewing and swallowing as well, then answered him. “What do I look like, a devil?”
“No… no I guess not but…” Asahi, “I just… you said you knew what I did to Jin, so I figured you’d want to get even.”
“I already did.” I answered. Of course I meant giving him a sound thrashing. But he probably thought I meant having him clean up my place and do my laundry.
But that was just a bonus on account of I hate chores.
“So, why’d you do it, anyway?” I asked. I had no hesitation about ‘painting’, but I won’t pretend I was never curious about people who did or wanted to do terrible things to guiltless people.
He tapped his hand on the pizza box. “Money for food. For laundry. For the public baths, for me, my cousins, and my parents, of course. A few punches and we’re covered for a few days.”
“Why not get a job?” I asked.
Asahi looked down at the plate. “I can’t.”
“What do you mean, you can’t?” I asked.
“What I said.” His hands were on the table and formed into angry fists, he glared down at the half eaten slice of pizza like it had insulted his mother.
“Your legs work. We know your hands work. Your brain works. So, what’s the problem?” I demanded, “Why’d you go and try to steal, or smack around a nice kid like Jin, or anyone else to get money, instead of getting real work?”
Maybe it was because he felt some actual guilt over the stuff he did, maybe it was because I implied he was even worse than he was, maybe he was just angry.
But whatever the reason, he snapped.
“We’re not allowed to have after school jobs unless it’s a family business! My dad’s got no business, my mom is sick all the time, and my cousins are… are different. They live with us because their parents are dead…accident… now they’re…simple. I have to mind them or they’ll get in trouble…there’s not enough to go around…” He glared at me, “Do you think I like that?! Alright, sure, it feels good to have some power and feel stronger than everybody else! But damnit who can feel proud of having nothing but problems?! I can’t get a job or I get expelled! Dad spends his time…away, and mom barely gets out of bed! I hate my life! I hate it! I hate it! I hate it! What else is there for me to do?! Beg?! Isn’t it better to be a wolf than a leech?! At least I can have some pride in being kind of strong…now I’ve got nothing! I hate it all!” He screamed and smashed his fists on my table again and again and again.
“At least Jin gets to eat! He’s not going to starve because he actually has a store! He’s got a business! His mom is…”
“Dying.” I said, cutting him off.
He shut up.
I doubted he’d let any of that loose on purpose and I very much doubt he’d ever intended to. I’d normally credit my natural swapper charisma for that, but really I think it’s more that he just never got privacy to let any of it out and once he started? Well he’s a kid still, he didn’t know how to hold it back.
But hearing that his target’s mother was sick seemed to have brought him up short.
“She’s… really? You’re not kidding?” He asked, and I shook my head. “So… I smacked around a kid with one dead parent and one dying one…?” His lower lip began to quiver.
“Why am I such shit?!” He began to blubber at the table as the enormity of what he’d done began to settle in over him, “Why? I didn’t know… I didn’t mean to…I’m sorry. I’m sorry, OK?”
I got the distinct feeling he was underselling his own mother’s condition and probably what his own father was doing for ‘work’.
“I’m not the one you did anything to.” I pointed out. “Listen, maybe she won’t die, things can turn around in an instant, you know? And alright, so…” I picked up another slice and began to devour the rich, greasy deliciousness, I especially loved the little spicy red flakes. They added a stellar kick to the food, and when I’d finished the slice down to the curved crust I leveled the bread at him while I said…
“Listen, tell you what, you layoff picking on anyone or stealing, and do some stuff for me. It won’t technically be a job. You just ‘happen’ to do my laundry when you’re doing yours. You just ‘happen’ to take away my leftovers after clearing out my kitchen. And of course when you’re cleaning up, if you ‘happen’ to just find money in the couch cushions, finders keepers. Sound fair?”
“You’d… do that?” Asahi asked, sniffling a little as he little by little gained some control over himself again.
“Yeah,” I gave a flippant wave, “why not. I hate chores. With the burning fire of a thousand suns do I hate them. Plus I always end up ordering more food than I mean to, it’d be a shame to let it go to waste.”
“I… yeah, yeah I’ll do it. I’ll come by every day, I swear!” Asahi said with a rapidfire nod of his head.
“Good, so… go ahead and eat whatever else you want, then take the rest with you. Except for my chicken wings, I will murder you if you try to take my chicken wings.” I said and brought that one box close to my chest as if I were protecting a baby.
I cracked a smile, just a little, and he managed to let out a feeble laugh. “Use the bathroom to wash your face before you go. And I’ll see you tomorrow.”
After he was gone I made a mental note to take money out of the ATM in the store. I'd need to start making a habit of ‘losing’ money in the couch after all.
submitted by endersgame69 to TheWorldMaker [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 21:06 SimplifEye117 Is it worth it?

I’m currently a foreman for a cell tower crew in Phoenix, AZ. I’ve been climbing/building/installing on cell towers for over 4 years now and I’m noticing that the industry doesn’t have much more for me. I’m looking to have a job where I can be home in my own bed every night and not have to work 12 hour shifts every day to make a living.
Back in 2017 I had joined a lineman training program and I was in the top 10 students out of 306. It was 13 months long and I dropped out after 3 months because I was young and didn’t know if I wanted to do that for the rest of my life. Stupid, I know, but I’m considering coming back to it now. Is it worth it? Or will I find myself working another job where I’m stuck living on the road and working 60+ hours a week just to make ends meet. Also, is it even possible to get a lineman job in Phoenix right now, or will I be stuck on a waiting list?
submitted by SimplifEye117 to Lineman [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 21:02 dr_g89 Off-road capable trucks under 60k

Currently driving a 2019 CX-5, but my hobbies are pushing me beyond its capabilities and a truck makes the most sense. I'm tired of trying to fit lumber or hauling dirt for my garden in a cross over. My CX-5 also has its limitations off road. I spend a lot of time out doors making it to remote trail heads and some better off road performance would be welcome.
Im looking for a midsize truck around 60k or less. The upcoming Ford Ranger Raptor seems to be my absolute ideal. Right price (if one can be had at MSRP), good performance, decent bed size / payload capacity and off road ability. After having some calls with every local dealer, it seems like that will be nearly impossible to get without a premium that puts it into the realm of the full F150 Raptor or beyond. One dealer agreed to put me on the list for a 35k market adjustment. Its lunacy.
Similar story with the upcoming Tacoma TRD-Pro / trailhunter.
In short I'm looking for a something in the same vein, but that can actually be ordered or reserved without a stratospheric markup.
submitted by dr_g89 to whatcarshouldIbuy [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 20:48 DunnoWhyBruh The hamster cage

The hamster cage
So I looked good at the things I could change for the hamster and so I went with a Trixie branded wheel 28cm and also added a sand bath, sprays, tunnels and hideout o and also a multi chamber hideout while also bought insects and a seed mix for a healthy diet and also toys to nibble on, the only thing I can think of improving it is by adding other substrates and such. O and I bought 2x 65liter of the paper based bedding kaytee but wasn't expecting to need more so I have to wait till Monday for delivery so hope you all understand o and the hamsters name is noodle willington the first it's a she and she will be the first to make the legacy happen. O and if you got any ways to improve it I hope you do I'm open for any criticism:).
Btw I'll add some photos once she wakes up
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2023.06.07 20:46 R-ZING Chestnut Square - Re-letting my Lease for September 2023

Looking to Re-let my lease for next year. I have 3 Male Roommates.
Chestnut Square 2 Bed - 2 Bath Shared Room
09/23/2023 - 09/08/2024
Fees - $498.00 - one time (admin. and app. fee)
Floor plan - $984.00 monthly
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2023.06.07 20:43 Future_Ad_3485 The Swallow and the Mad Hatter Part Eleven: A Lilac in the Bayou

Laying in bed, my hand rested on my bump. How did I end like this? Demonic and pregnant, that very statement sounding like a cheap movie title. Demy slumbered next to me, the day was ours to be had. Demy promised me a date today, and I suppose I should take it. Swinging my feet over the edge of the bed, a black box waited for me. Opening the top, my breath was stolen from me. Golden lace sparrows flew over a scarlet rockabilly dress, my shaking fingers pulling it out. Holding it to my body, the measurements were exact to me. The mattress creaked as Demy sat up, the morning sun bathing his handsome features.
“Do you like it? I ordered it a couple of weeks ago. Hopefully, it will fit.” He yawned groggily, rubbing his eyes. “I also ordered new jeans for you, considering that they won’t fit eventually. Try it on.” Tugging on my snug bra, the dress fit perfectly. Loving the way the skirt floated away from me, Demy was already dressed in a simple black dress shirt and dark jeans. His casual look threw me off, a scythe charm dangled off of his wrists. Staring at him with pure bewilderment, he tugged his hair into a neat man bun. Shrugging his shoulders, he sauntered over to me. His hungry eyes devoured me.
“I like it very much.” I stammered with a fluttering heart. Wrapping his arm around the small of my waist, his lips pressed against mine passionately. Arching my body towards him, time stopped once more. Why did this keep happening! Releasing me from his spell, his forehead pressed against mine.
“I forgot to tell you that I can disguise myself. Now I look like an albino goth.” He explained playfully, tucking a piece of hair behind my ear. “Let me fix your hair.” Brushing through it, he twisted it into a simple side braid. Kicking over my boots, he kissed my forehead while I slid on my boots. Spinning around the room, he swung me underneath him. Smothering me in kisses, he placed me on his back. Walking downstairs, we burst out onto the busy street. People smiled at us as he took every turn to an abandoned mansion. Vines had claimed the red brick, the metal porches barely hanging on.
“I bought it for us.” He proclaimed proudly, placing his hands on his hips. “I thought it was time we got a place of our own. What do you think?” Tears welled up in my eyes, my hand falling on my bump. He didn’t have to, my other hand clenching into a tight ball. Glancing up at the top window, a lone female spirit floated in her flowing nightgown. Cocking my head, shadowy hands ripped her back. Bursting through the front door, dust covered the water damaged walls. Sprinting upstairs, my fingers curled around my staff. The stairs creaked dangerously underneath my boots, a jump in the air saving me from a painful fall as the steps crumbled. Landing on the metal railing, my boots clanged against the metal with every step. A ghost was in trouble, the scene shifting around me. Demy caught up to me, the inside of the house rewinding back in time. Pristine walls with ornate wallpaper greeted me, Demy letting out a long sigh.
“We are trapped in another time bubble.” He groaned to himself, rubbing his forehead. “We know the only way out is to kill the ghost who brought us here. This bubble reeks of something else though. Can you smell the sulfur?” Sniffing the air, he wasn’t wrong. Hiding me underneath the staircase, my breath hitched at his body pressed against mine. A man with chocolate brown hair and caramel eyes landed inches from us, blood pouring from his eyes. A child’s scream snapped me from my horror filled trance, a thirteen year old girl ran by us with her long brown waves flying behind her. A shadow figure chased after her, a jagged blade sliding through her chest. Watching the ruby drops hit the floor, the worn wooden handle became stained with her blood. Dropping to the floor, her hand reached for me. The demon snapped its head towards us, rows of bloody fangs clicked together. Spinning his blade in his palm, his wrist flicked abruptly, Demy’s back caught the blade, his scythe charm glowing red hot. Pushing the knife out with his muscles, the charm grew to its full size. Ravens cawed behind him, the bracelet turning back into his top hat. Scarlet flames twisted with golden flames, the feathers floating behind me. Cocking his head back, crazed laughter burst from his lips.
“You are going to have to find me first.” He taunted cruelly, clapping his hands. “I will never let you claim my home.” Demy narrowed his eyes in his direction, the annoyance disappearing into the floor. Coming out of our hiding spot, jazz music played outside. Creeping around the corner, my flames died down for a second. A pile of bright yellow liquid coated the spot he went through, Demy crouching down to examine it.
“He is ancient.” He grumbled under his breath, his kind gaze watched me take in the information. “The brighter the sulfur the older they are.” Feeling stupid for not understanding him, the solution wasn’t obvious to me. Shifting uncomfortably, no words came to the tip of my tongue. The ghost of the girl floated over to me, tears flowing endlessly down her cheeks. Her hair floated up behind her, her quaking hands gripping her ragged nightgown. Her milky eyes met mine, surprise rounding her eyes at my outreached hand.
“We are going to get rid of him for you. Unfortunately, I don’t think I can free you because of the whole murder thing. Maybe we can find your father.” I offered sincerely, her icy hands cupping mine. “We can turn on the television for you every now and then. I’ll even cook your favorite foods so you can smell them. The one thing you have to do is help me out. Can you do that?” The spirit of the father floated around the corner, his snow white hair danced wildly. Fixing his mustache, his milky eyes fell on us. Dusting off his suit, he cleared his throat. Holding out his hand, I gave it one good firm shake.
“I am Mr. Smillet and that is my daughter Milly. We would love to help you.” He introduced himself politely, ruffling his daughter’s hair. “Unfortunately, we can’t leave because of an eternal curse on the land but your idea sounds lovely. Let’s make this place a home once more.” Floating through the floor, his head popped up through the center of the hole.
“This is going to sound backwards but he is in the attic.” He chirped warmly, pulling himself out. “We will lead the way.” Walking past the photos of them, the nineteen twenties raged outside. Stopping at the attic door, they took a step back. Thanking them silently, we pushed the door open. Pressing our backs against the wall, the stairs creaked with every step. Glancing behind me, the door slammed shut behind us. The only light flickered, my heart seconds from beating out of my chest. Pop! A sea of darkness swallowed us, cold breezes lashing our cheeks. Summoning my flames, my heart sank into the pit of my stomach at his face inches from mine. Slamming my heel into his chest, he smashed into the wall. Climbing the stairs, I kicked a pile of boxes down the stairs. Spinning my scythe over my head, balls of flames whipped in his direction. Stopping them before they hit him, he raised his hand over his head. Hundreds of those damn daggers spun over his head, my metal feathers destroying them upon impact. Snapping his fingers, cold hands smashed through the floorboards. Slicing my palm on an exposed nail, Demy seemed to be dealing with his own problems. Smearing my hand on the wall, the scent was enough for me to summon my pets. Whistling sharply, the attic door rattled violently. Wet snarls echoed on the other side, my three pets taking him down to the ground. Pulling his gun from his pocket, Demy towered over the howling demon. Pressing his gun to his forehead, his finger tugged on the trigger. His bullet burst from the end, his body decaying to ash. My pets bounded up to me, their tails wagging a mile a minute. Rubbing their bellies, they melted into puddles.
“Who are good doggies!” I spoke with my dog mom’s voice, tongues licking my face left and right. The time bubble still remained, my eyes narrowing. Something felt off, a glowing orb bounced in the corner. Walking over to it cautiously, the ball of light floated into my clammy palm. Tears welled up in my eyes, the spirit was her mother. The real reason the time bubble existed was because of her, her soul purpose had been served. She stayed behind to protect them, one more thing stopping her.
“I need you to promise to take care of them.” She spoke gently, the orb floating in the air. “I can’t stay here because I dragged myself outside of the property line. I need to know that they will be okay.” Drops of light hit the floor, sobs bounced off the wall. Demy embraced me from behind, his chin resting on my head. Flashing the orb with his crooked grin, the drops of light slowed to a halt.
“We vow to give them a lovely afterlife. I was thinking we could give them the attic.” He promised sincerely, kissing the top of my head. “We can furnish the space as they wish. Then they can hang out with us downstairs. How does that sound?” Thinking for a minute, the orb floated into the sky. The time bubble glitched, a dusty attic greeting us. Pressing my palm to the splintered floor, a bright light blinded us. Covering his eyes, the light died down. Pristine floors brushed against my palm, a neat bedroom pleased me. The simple furniture would do, a picture of the girl's family hung on the wall. Running downstairs, the two spirits waited on the other side of the door. Opening the door for them, I motioned for them to go on up. Gasps of wonder bounced off the wall, my eyes scanning the scarlet walls. The hall seemed empty, my fingers tracing the one ancient mirror. Demy’s jaw dropped, my finger picking it up.
“If I can heal living things I can bring inanimate objects back to life.” I bragged with a wide grin, poking it to see if it was real. “I didn’t think I could do this well. We do have to get some furniture though. I could only manifest theirs because it had existed at one point. Do you like it?” Parting his lips to speak, a distraught woman sprinted in. One of our marks entered the hall, I put my foot out. Not seeing my foot, his face smashed onto the floor. Pressing my staff into his back, he put his hands up. The silky onyx hair contrasted the restored wooden floors, my three dogs surrounding him.
“If you move a fucking muscle you'll become dog chow.” I snapped hotly, flaming feathers hovered over him. “Tell me why you were cha-” My face dead panned at my former colleague charging at me with a haunted expression. Grabbing her by the arm, I tossed her over my head. The floor groaned in protest, the boards repairing themselves. Examining her closer, her eyes were ruby. Her lilac waves cascaded down her back, the white frilly Lolita dress hugged her petite body. A diamond collar sparkled on her neck, my eyes falling on the inky stain spreading on the white lace. Sniffing the air, I let them both go. A nasty bugger limped down the hall, a curved lilac blade quivered in his sludgy back. Demy raised his scythe, his ravens cawing behind him. Harsh winds blew our hair around, my flames roaring to life. Crouching down to their level, I yanked both of the heads up by their hair.
“If I help you, you join my army. No ifs, and or buts.” I barked sternly, the two of them nodding. “Sit back and watch the show.” Resting against the wall, her master fussed over her. Spinning my staff over my head, flaming feathers landed in the body. Demy leapt over my head, his scythe cutting into the body. The demon roared, horror rounding our eyes as it absorbed our power. Opening up its mouth, a wall of lilacs blocked its path. An idea came to mine, the flames of the burning lilacs illuminating my features.
“We need to hit it with everything we have.” I whispered so it wouldn’t hear, bewildered expressions meeting my determined grin. “You have trust in me.” Allowing my powers to build up at the top of my staff, Demy’s pure power built at the end of his scythe. Swinging our weapons at the same time, a rush of hot air blew our hair back. Taking the mirror off the wall, I held it in front of us. Let’s see how much power he could take. Demy held me by my hips in preparation for the impact. Absorbing the power as I had planned, a beam of our power slid us back a few feet. The beam hit him, the cracks beginning to form on his skin. Absorbing the doubled energy, he blasted the mirror again. The frame creaked, the beam striking the mirror once more. Demy held me down with all of his strength. The game of tennis continued until the energy decayed him into a pile of ash. Lowering the mirror, the house repaired itself. Demy huffed behind me, his arm spinning me around. Kissing me hungrily, he seemed grateful that I was alive. Crouching down to her level, Demy’s top hat absorbed his scythe and ravens.
“Where is she wounded? I won’t hurt her. I want to heal her.” I assured him kindly, the fellow demon taking a step back. “Do you mind?” Lifting up her dress, a nasty spike stuck out of her back. Ripping it out, she cussed like a sailor. Hovering my hand over the gaping wound, her muscle fused back together. Watching her skin patch itself, a nasty scar throbbed underneath my touch. Demy kicked her blade over, her trembling fingers gripping the worn leather hilt with raw terror.
“You must be Davidos Darth and Lilac Mattson. These two defected a couple of years ago.” Demy explained calmly, the petite woman embracing me graciously. “They were just hunted down by one of her sludgy monsters. The Golden Lion must be after you. The question is why.” A two year old girl peeked out from around the corner, her lilac waves grazing the floor. A white summer dress floated away from her body, her ruby eyes falling on me. A bright smile illuminated Lilac’s purple lips, the girl’s purple lips curling into a matching smile.
“Mommy!” She cried out, Lilac tossing me to the floor as she caught her daughter. “I am glad you are safe. I hid in my invisibility bubble like you told me too. Who is the pretty lady?” Crouching down to her level, I held out my hand.
“I am Scarlet Deaclon, your mother’s best friend. How do you feel about living here? Is that alright with your mother?” I inquired sweetly, her face lighting up. “I can’t have you guys running like that. I will put a protection spell on the house if it makes you feel better. Us defectors have to stick together.” Silent tears stained Lilac’s cheek, Davidos seemed seconds from crying.
“Seriously, I can’t have you guys on the street. Fight with me and we can have a miniature family.” I continued jovially, ruffling the girl’s beautiful hair. “I can also babysit if you need it.” Lilac began to sob, several fresh cuts and bruises caught my eyes.
“Why are you being so nice?” She wept softly, wiping away her tears. “I don’t deserve it. We left in s-” Putting my hand in the air, confusion mixed with sadness. Cupping her face, she quaked underneath my touch.
“She is the best reason to leave.” I comforted her kindly, my three dogs bounding up to the little girl. “Don’t worry they don’t bite. What’s her name?” Oreo, Stripes, and Darkness smothered her in love, the girl's giggles twinkled in the air. The four of them played as Davidos helped Lilac to her feet, Demy pacing back and forth. An irritated growl rumbled in his throat, a hand on his shoulder calming him down. He had to know that we needed allies, his lips brushing against the top of my head. Fishing around his pocket, a worn pocket knife sat in my palm. Cutting the blade across my palm, my eyes watched the blood pool. Drawing a powerful protection spell on the wall, the house rattled the moment I slammed my palm onto the wall. A golden dome hummed to life around the house. Mouthing a silent spell, five necklaces appeared in my palms. Golden feathers dangled off of the golden chains, no words being said as I passed them out.
“These will protect you when you leave the house.” I informed them with my real smile, dropping the necklace over the little girl’s head. “This should increase your ability to become invisible.” Clearing her throat, she stood in the attention position. Holding her head up high, Demy grinned at her proud stance.
“I am Lavender.” She introduced herself boldly, cupping my hands. “I vow to be your ally.” Chuckling softly to myself, my hand fell to my stomach absentmindedly. Hoping my kid was this awesome, hope glittered in her eyes. Demy spun me on my heels, placing my necklace over my head. Hooking his elbow in mine, he glanced back with concern.
“We are going to pick up some grub. Is pizza okay?” He asked with his crooked grin, their heads nodding. “We will be right back.” Guiding me out the door, our neighbors stared at us long and hard. Waving to them, they waved back awkwardly. Letting the moonlight bathe me, he spun me around. Holding me by the small of my waist, scarlet colored my cheeks.
“Did you see that adorable little girl? Do you think ours will be as awesome?” He mused playfully, kissing my lips feverishly. A goofy look dawned on my face, the feather necklace I made glittered on his shirt. Following my gaze, he fiddled with the magical charm.
“I would be a fool not to wear what my wife made for me.” He continued happily, his hand sliding down to my slight bump. Getting onto his knees, his lips brushed against the surface. Hugging my bump, a deeper crimson rose to my cheeks. People watched with warm smiles, the older couples holding each other tighter. Rising to his feet, he hooked his elbow in mine. Making me feel like the lead in a romance novel, pride swelled in his eyes. Walking me to the local pizza place, a warmth came over me. A shadow figure darted in the distance, the serenity leaving my mind. What the hell was that?
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2023.06.07 20:42 Beginning_Training59 wet tail?

opened my hammy's hideout tonight and saw a small lump of wet poo, prayed it was nothing, and 2 hours later her wheel was covered in wet, very foul smelling poo. she's still very active (running on her wheel non stop) and alert, drinking water and eating normally - can this still be wet tail?
i've booked a vet appointment for tomorrow evening, but i just read that most hammies don't survive wet tail :-(
my hammy is very skittish and always stressed even though i've done everything right - 600 square inch cage, lots of bedding, hideouts, many chew toys, sand bath, sprays, etc. lots of out of cage time as well. didn't disturb her for a week after bringing her home. but she won't let me touch her, jumps when i do ANYTHING, by anything i mean putting food in her bowl. sigh. i'm not sure what else to do anymore.
edit: forgot to mention she's a syrian and i've had her for 2.5 months, she's about 5 months old.
submitted by Beginning_Training59 to hamstercare [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 20:27 ArchiveSlave Commander's Rounds Gaiden Entry 116.5: A Royal Prerogative

(All my stuff is here)
Princess Royal looked at the timetable that the commander had passed on to the ex-rebel Kansen from the office of the Royal Prime Minister. As far as these things went, it wouldn’t be too many more months before the new base in the Western Mediterranean would be brought on line, and they would be leaving Azur Lane’s Pacific HQ for a new assignment involving keeping watch on the Suez Canal and the Dardanelles. She would be glad to shed the maid outfit she had been forced to wear for these months, and, well, there was someone who was also excited.
“Haha, looks like she’s done it- A real base all to ourselves.” Florida smiled as she walked along the edge of a fountain in the main square. “No more hiding in some river junction, lots of actual support this time, and, most importantly of all?” She looked right at Princess Royal with a smile. “All the gorgeous Atlantic Kansen you can look at. They should be calling it a vacation, not a redeployment!”
Princess Royal huffed. “I shouldn’t have to remind you that we’re being sent there to look after two of the world’s most important waterways. There will be little time for the festival of ogling that you will want to enmesh yourself in as soon as you arrive. Even if we’re not covering an ocean, there’s still going to be plenty of work for us to do when we get there and afterwards.”
Florida giggled. “Hey now, don’t rain on my parade. I’d tell you to take that stick out of your ass, but you’re probably too afraid of liking it to put one in there.”
The battlecruiser’s eyebrow twitched. “Would you mind spouting such things in another time and place?”
The battleship put on a sly grin. “Oh, right… You prefer Tiger to do that kind of thing, I guess.”
Princess Royal blushed and gave Florida a furtive, covert nudge, just enough of one to make it look like the dreadnought battleship just naturally lost her balance. Florida toppled back into the water with a splash, and as Princess Royal left, she heard the battleship shout “Joke’s on you, I’m into this!”
Princess Royal sighed a little. Some of these other ships were utterly incorrigible. Were they not taught manners? Did their country even have any to begin with? Did they used to have them and give them up as too much of a bother?
Those would be questions for later as she went to clean up Yuubari’s lab, an assignment that perpetually annoyed her due to the wide variety of… substances… That could end up being spilled there. She was never quite sure what they were even working on in there, and she never really felt compelled to ask, either from within or without.
Once she was inside, she saw that Delaware and Dr. Anzeel were talking with each other.
“I don’t think any of us questioned human genius.” Delaware began. “…However, we did have something to say about how it was applied, especially since humans seemed to think that we inherently owed them something for forcing us into existence.”
Dr. Anzeel nodded. “Well, some might say that what you just said is a fancy way of saying “I didn’t ask to be born!” Or something like that, but you didn’t exactly give us much time to make amends.”
“I think that we believed at the start that giving humans a chance to make amends would mean giving them another chance to betray us.” Delaware looked Dr. Anzeel right in the eyes. “And given what happened to you, I would hope you could understand.”
“Perhaps.” Dr. Anzeel replied, and then smiled. “But here I am, aren’t I? But the fact of the matter is, even if I despised humanity, I still have work to do for my girls. If the Sirens gain full control, humans aren’t the only ones who are going to suffer. After talking to the others, the world the Sirens want is one dominated by a war without end. It’s… The kind of world where Enterprise would suffer most, to say nothing of those other girls who want to enjoy this world that they’ve been born into.”
Princess Royal listened as she continued cleaning up, and Delaware still had more to say. “So you still believe that there is a world worth expending your efforts for?”
“What was done to me and was done to you long ago was done by some people who allowed themselves to be corrupted by power.” She said. “But for most people, and I think most Kansen, the most they want to do is live their lives. Humans want to be able to go to the beach again without worrying about black ships turning up on the horizon, I would say. And I think that you and the others would like to be left alone without thinking that anyone was coming to get you.”
“Perhaps.” She shrugged. “Still, we do have to do our penance, it seems, and thankfully it’s being administered by someone we trust. Besides, our new assignment will leave me with plenty of opportunities to show my own worth. The defenses of the Dardanelles and Suez Canal are atrocious, and since I’ll have a proper lab and proper resources, I’ll make sure that even Poseidon wouldn’t be able to force the straits.”
Dr. Anzeel started putting some of her equipment away. “You sound confident.”
Delaware replied. “It’s the paradox of military matters. You can’t have success without confidence, and you can’t necessarily have confidence without success. Anyway, I’ve got my own work to do, so I will be leaving.”
After Delaware left, Dr. Anzeel took a look at Princess Royal. “Ah, hello there. Sorry I didn’t see you before, I was talking with your colleague.”
Princess Royal hmphed. “I feel like I should be taking umbrage at the implication that I was beneath your notice before I came in to clean. I can only hope there’s nothing too exotic to mop up.”
“Nothing out of the ordinary this time.” She said. “Purifier wasn’t messing with her booster fuel this time, so you don’t have to worry about your water catching on fire.”
“I will believe that this is a distinct possibility.” She said, and got to work. “Doctor, we kansen who followed Erin meant to live free, but became paranoid about losing our liberty to the point where we launched ourselves into battle all the same. But now you say you wish for us to be able to contemplate things other than the battles we were made for?”
“If you would like.” The doctor said. “Has there been something on your mind?”
“Of course, my mind is not empty of musings.” She said. “Rather, it’s about…”
“Princess Royal is always troubled by something.” Said Tiger as she came down into the lab. “Matters great and small, but I think she would be better off if she was willing to accept the kind of relief that others, like me, can give.”
Princess Royal huffed. “Now, what is it that has brought you down here, Tiger? Surely you have some other purpose here than teasing me.”
“Hardly.” She said, giving Princess Royal a hug from behind, causing the other battlecruiser to squirm indignantly. “I just haven’t seen you all day. Or really much of yesterday either, and I was wondering if something had befallen you. Especially since you know that you can just leave it to me to make everything feel good again.”
The Royal battlecruiser pouted as she was released by her larger companion, and sighed. “Do not think I am unaware of your potential methods, but for now I am busy. I have no doubt we will run into each other when the day is done- you seem to have a knack for popping into my life.”
“Of course~” She also took a look at Dr. Anzeel. “And there’s our lovely doctor, too. But I suppose I’ll just leave the two of you to talk for now- I was just making sure our princess hadn’t managed to over-grump herself and pull something.”
And then Tiger left without a care in the world.
Dr. Anzeel talked immediately. “I haven’t known her for long, but would you say that she’s always like this?”
Princess Royal sighed. “Well, if it’s something you must know, she is, indeed, like this most of the time. She can’t help teasing others with her words and body, and she is utterly relentless about it. It’s almost mystifying that there can be one so openly lascivious in our Royal Navy. Duke of York excepted, naturally.”
Dr. Anzeel held her tongue. Though she hadn’t met Implacable personally, she had heard some stories. “It is surprising, I must admit. The most you usually get from a royal is some kind of playful teasing, as I’ve seen it. I can see why it exasperates you.”
Princess Royal hmphed. “I’m only deigning to speak to you on this matter because, among all of the humans here, you are the one who most knows what it’s like to be very suddenly betrayed, so we have some small measure of common ground. Frankly, I am confused as to why you even shoes to work for this commander in the first place.”
“Considering that I was taken away from Enterprise and the others by the military, yes, I don’t have any love for soldiers. I still don’t, in fact. The commander has made some promises, of course, but it won’t be until the end of the war that they’re fulfilled or not.” She finished putting away some lab instruments. “However, the commander lets me be with my girls without any restrictions or conditions, plus he gave me the choice in the first place. Even if I don’t completely trust him yet, I don’t fully believe he’ll disappoint me either.” She smiled. “I guess you could say I’m helping him win because I’m interested in seeing his true colors.”
Princess Royal threw up her hands. “I guess that’s how it’s going to be, then. I shall not witness it, however, as it seems that in a few months at most I and the rest of our band are being shipped off to the Mediterranean to overlook the Dardanelles and Suez and provide some sort of extra comfort to the people of the Hellenic Republic by our presence. I haven’t the slightest idea what we might actually do other than sunbathe and listen to the seabirds, but Iron Duke seems to see it as important.”
“It’s better than being a prisoner, though, isn’t it?”
“Infinitely.” Princess Royal said. “…But now I shall have to continue to work with that enthusiastic strumpet at all times and at all places. While normally I would relish showing humans what it truly means to master the waves, I have also been given time to contemplate things, and I have certain feelings that I find difficult to admit, but I feel as though I will burst if I do not.”
Dr. Anzeel started some coffee. “It has something to do with Tiger, doesn’t it?”
Princess Royal put on a blush. “What it’s about has nothing to do with you, all that matters is that there is a matter in the first place.”
“I see.” She said. “…You know, your highness, I never had the chance to say goodbye to Enterprise or the others before they took me away, so if there’s something you want to clear up, the best time is always now. And if you can’t do it now, you should do it as quickly as you can.”
“I do have some more cleaning to do.” She went on. “First here, and then in that commander’s house. It seems odd, but I guess I shall have to set some time in order to clear the air, won’t I?”
“You know, you could just tell me that this is about Tiger.” She said.
“Urgh.” Went Princess Royal. “Fine, it has to do with Tiger. I’ve been playing too nice with her, and I believe it’s long past time for me to tell her exactly what I think of her and her various and persistent provocations. It’s not something I mean to put off any longer- By this evening at the latest she shall know exactly what is on my mind and she’s going to have to deal with it.”
Dr. Anzeel nodded. “Sounds like she’s in for a surprise.” Dr. Anzeel began pouring a cup for herself. “Want some coffee?”
Princess Royal paused. “Though I won’t go so far as to curse it as “bitter bean broth” like Settsu does, I am, and shall always remain, entirely a tea person.”
Dr. Anzeel smiled. “Can’t say I didn’t ask.”
Princess Royal decided that the best way to tell Tiger what she had in mind was to be somewhere that no one could hear them, at a time when most people decided to mind their own business. She ask one particular lavender-haired Royal destroyer what the best place to tell someone something personal and private was, and she got the response of “Under a legendary tree, or on a rooftop.”
And since she didn’t know of any legendary trees on the premises, she opted for the rooftop of the guest housing. She stood there, finishing up at least two cups of tea as she waited for Tiger to show herself.
It was right after Tiger arrived that she spoke first. “Ooooh, I guess you have something special to tell me this time.”
Princess Royal stopped dead in her tracks. “How would you figure such a thing?”
“Easy enough, I would say.” She said. “You don’t often go out of your way to pay me a social call- most of the time we just seem to end up together by some circumstance or another, each and every time. Not that I mind, of course. I’ve never minded having you around to play with~”
“And that is precisely the thing that the two of us need to talk about this very instant. After all, news has come to me that we’re going to be having a proper base of our own not long from now in military terms, so I thought it would be the right and proper time to clear the air before we have to start working together in real earnest.” She stood up straight. “Miss Tiger, I am going to be complete with you this instant so that there is not even the slightest bit of confusion later on.”
Tiger put on a wide smile, her orange eyes seeming to brighten. “Oh? Well, let’s just hear it. After all, I’m the only one here, so your little secrets are safe with me~”
Princess Royal huffed. “Miss Tiger, you, and I mean this completely, are an uncouth harlot who can hardly open your mouth without letting loose a tide of unrestrained innuendo. Half of your speech and mannerisms seem to be guided by the thirsts of your impossibly needy loins at all times on all days, and it is only by some great providence or miracle that you have not yet driven me insensible.” Princess Royal turned her head to the side. “…However, at the same time, I also wish to kiss you.”
This was the first time that Tiger seemed even slightly taken aback by something she said, but Tiger regained her smile quickly enough. The battlecruiser had a small chuckle. “Oh ho? Now, this is quite a development. Go on, though you probably meant to.”
Princess Royal pouted. “…As maddening as you are, I have also contemplated what it might be like if you were gone, for one reason or another, and as much there are times when you make me wish to shout or make some other indication of my displeasure. I do not believe that I would be well if you were to be out of my life. Everything would feel wrong and bland if you were to be forever absent, and since it seems I cannot do without you…” She looked Tiger right in the eyes. “…The least I can do is be with you for as long as this all lasts.”
There was a moment of silence, and then Tiger said something. “Those are a bunch of pretty words, well suited to coming from a pretty mouth. But… I wonder what you plan to actually do, hm?”
Princess Royal blushed a little. “Now, what do you mean?”
“Poetry is just vanity on its own, darling~” She began. “You can talk and talk all you like, but…” The battlecruiser walked towards Princess Royal with a sway of her hips. “But you’ve known me for some time when we’ve both been like this, and I want to know if you’re willing to say with your hands what you’ll say with your words. Both of us are deathly tired of speeches…” She put her hand under Princess Royal’s chin and tilted her head up slightly. “…I love that you never do things by half-measures, but if you want to have me, then you can’t merely tell me, you’ll have to take me. So, Princess Royal, will you do this, or suddenly become shy and retire at the last and crucial moment? Show me~”
Princess Royal shuddered as she was forced to look right into Tiger’s enchanting orange eyes. The tall, buxom beauty was a physical marvel- Princess Royal had to admit that to herself. But she was being given a chance to finally have one over on the woman, so she took it. She seized Tiger by her coat and tugged her forward, planting her own lips on the battlecruiser’s, and not just for something quick- she was in it for the duration to kiss Tiger as long as she could stand.
As it turned out, Tiger could stand quite a bit, and it was a long time until the pair separated.
After they separated, Tiger touched her forehead to Princess Royal’s, and put her arms around the shorter girl’s shoulders. “Heh… Of all the cute girls I could find, I found the one who just finds it so hard to say “I love you”. Well, we’ll just have to fix that, won’t we?”
Princess Royal blushed and pouted. “Hmph. All I can really hope is that some good behavior might rub off on you over time.”
Tiger chuckled. “Darling… That’s going to take a whole lot of rubbing. And what if I don’t change the way you want me to, hm? What will you do then, if this Tiger doesn’t change her stripes.”
Princess Royal’s pout disappeared, but her blush stayed. “…I wouldn’t recognize you if you were too different, and I believe the Tiger I feel this way about is the one right in front of me. If it is so beyond you to change, then don’t. This is how I will have you, whether you make yourself a little more presentable or not.”
The voluptuous battlecruiser giggled. “…Well, why don’t we stay overnight to see how we get along in private. My bed always has room for two~”
Princess Royal’s pout returned. “Only if you find it in yourself to not hog the covers.”
“Hehe, All right~”
Dido was anxious. The commander had sent her to find out why Princess Royal and Tiger were late to their cleaning duties, and so she had to navigate the supervised guest housing where the formerly rebel kansen were being kept until it was time to send them on their way.
Dido hurried along the corridors, stepping lightly to make sure that she didn’t wake up anyone who was still asleep- Agincourt could get pretty testy about that sort of thing. She knocked on what should have been Princess Royal’s room. She then nervously dared to knock again.
So much for that.
She then worked up the nerve to walk over to Tiger’s room. While she wasn’t as liable to complain about being woken up as Princess Royal, Tiger made her quiver for different reasons. Her heart briefly felt like it jumped into her throat before she knocked on the door.
“Oh… who has come calling on this good morning?” There was Tiger’s unmistakable voice.
“Um, it’s me, Dido, and the master was wondering why you’re late today…. May I come in?”
Tiger spoke up. “Why, you certainly can, darling~”
“She most certainly can not!” There was Princess Royal’s voice. “I’m indecent!”
Tiger giggled. “No, I’m indecent, you are merely unclothed.”
Dido tapped the door again. “So…”
Tiger spoke up. “All right, just wait five minutes for her highness to make herself presentable.”
Dido did what she was told.
After a few minutes, there was the sound of a click, accompanied by Tiger’s sultry voice. “Come on in~”
Dido blushed as she stepped in.
Tiger was cooking a full breakfast, only she was dressed in a translucent, flame-orange nightgown that allowed Dido to see the racy black underwear that was tasked with handling the battlecruiser’s abundant figure. Dido peeked over to the bedroom to see Princess Royal sitting in bed, with her usual level of grumpiness and wearing a set of elaborate red pajamas.
Dido blushed “O-Oh… You two had… A special moment…”
Tiger smiled. “You see, it’s not a problem. When outside of battle, this girl is a harmless kitten.” As if to emphasize that, Tiger began stroking the top of Dido’s head.
The maid blushed immediately. “Uwaaa…”
Princess Royal sighed. “Be that as it may, I hope you may find some diplomatic way to inform the commander of our tardiness. You are not to say you found us together in the altogether, or some other such scandalous thing.”
Dido gave a dutiful nod. “Ah… Yes…” She looked at Tiger and everything going on in the kitchen. “Is there anything I can help you with while I’m here? It’ll help you get ready faster, I think.”
Tiger shook her head. “I’m fine here, but I think our princess could stand being spoiled by a cute maid. Why don’t you go wait on her hand and foot until breakfast is ready.” She chuckled. “And besides, the faster you help us get ready, the sooner you’ll get to be in charge of us~”
Princess Royal crossed her arms. “I don’t know how much of an incentive that is. You know how domineering she isn’t.”
Tiger went back to breakfast. “Oh, she’s quite good at taking charge, under the right circumstances.”
Dido squeaked and went over to Princess Royal. “Do you need anything?”
Princess Royal looked up for a moment. “…I think I would like you to at least do my braid. I don’t need to explain how it works or looks, nor should I have to. I am sure that you’re observant.”
Dido sat down on the bed, and took Princess Royal’s hair into her nimble hands, and immediately got to work. The battlecruiser closed her eyes as she was taken care of, and Dido could tell that Princess Royal was in a state where she was feeling that something was right with the world. Responding to this, she took the time to get it just right. “I know it may be beyond me to ask, but I guess you will stop fighting as much?”
Tiger chuckled. “Oh, dear… It was never anything for you to worry about, and probably even less so now. You can just say that we decided to be honest with each other and came to an understanding.”
Princess Royal blushed a little at that. “Please don’t try to have that sort of way with words. The maid is already as red as she can manage.”
Dido did indeed blush, and did want to bury her face in Princess Royal’s hair. “W-Well, I’m sure the commander would be happy to know that but… Ah… I guess you’re not telling him the details.”
Tiger came in with breakfast, walking into the bedroom with a sway to her hips. “Of course- That’ll be our little secret between the two of us. Of course, if you’d like to join in and learn about that yourself…”
Princess Royal flushed completely red. “T-Tiger! Not in front of the help!” She huffed. “It’s obvious that last night wasn’t enough, and that you need some further action.”
Tiger chuckled, and set out breakfast. She had always teased Princess Royal, and she had always responded- But now Princess Royal was truly hers to tease, and Princess Royal was able to properly express herself- even if it was behind closed doors.
submitted by ArchiveSlave to AzureLane [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 20:19 StrangeAccounts I won a trip to visit the Wordsmith.

Part 1

"Who are you?" I asked in a distant tone at Mr. Valentine. He had taken seat in the same place he had in my memories of the morning prior. He returned my look with his own piercing eyes.
"Vincent Valentine, of course. Why do you ask?" My head was spinning but my determination shined through with clear focus.
"Because I can't remember you. I can't remember a single thing I wrote about you in my essay. And last night-" He raised one of his boney fingers to silence me.
"It's been seven months since we first got in contact with each other. Memories fade. I understand that. Please have some breakfast and hopefully calm your nerves. You slept so long you nearly missed it."
I walked over to the far side of the kitchen and put my hand to my forehead. A clammy cold sweat had exuded from my skin from the very moment that I had woken up.
"You look abysmal. Maybe you're fighting off some jet lag. Lucas, bring the poor woman some lavender water." He looked towards the back of the room behind my shoulder and a voice responded.
"Yes Mr. Valentine."
"Please, sit down. The sun will cast off the shadows from that came from the night. And hopefully some of those shadows will be from the post travel jitters that you must be feeling. After all, I'd hate for you to leave before I have a chance to teach you anything." His eyes carried with them such genuine grace and that his look alone had put me at ease.
I sat down and glanced over to my breakfast. It was the same as the day prior.
The Butler Lucas had quickly brought me out a glass of lavender infused water. A pristine twig floated at the top irradiating the glass in a purple hue. I took a sip and slowly felt my fear wash away.
"I'm sorry Mr. Valentine. I think I had a rough dream last night." I watched the lavender sprout twirl around in the dull current of my glass.
"It's understandable. Visiting someplace new always comes with its sense of unease. It happens to the best of us." I heard my stomach growl to him in response. I felt my face turn a rose color as I began to feel silly over the whole thing. "By all means, eat to your hearts content. You'll need your strength for later tonight. We have another lesson scheduled."
I gave him a bitter sweet smile and began to eat my breakfast. It was a little colder today but all the same it tasted delicious. Mr. Valentine politely waited until I finished eating before he continued.
"I was thinking this afternoon you could spend some time in your room writing up a story for me. Tonight you can head over to my Den and read it. I'll help make it a little more authentic if I can." The elderly writer smiled and stood up from his table. "It's been a roller coaster of a wonderful morning. And the days just starting. I hope you begin to feel better soon." And with that he walked away leaving me alone with Lucas.
"Hey Lucas?" I asked, my voice feeling faint.
"Yes Madam?" He replied with his usual servile tone.
"Do you think you could make sure my door is locked tonight?" There was a slight twitch of Lucas's lips before he nodded to my request.
"Absolutely. We'll make sure to lock it up after your retreat inside. I hope the night servants didn't bother you last night." I couldn't bear to look up at the Servant. I continuously felt silly about the whole thing. Yet the visage of the Maid still haunted the dark corners of my mind.
I finished up my drink and took leave from the dining room. I thanked Lucas for the meal and headed upstairs to my chambers. The afternoon sun basked its earthly glow into the bedroom, caking the writers desk in a brilliant spotlight. I placed my journal on the desk and began writing. My story was that of a man trapped behind a windowless room. Each breath he took shrunk the room bit by bit until he was encased in the plaster, his last breath fatally sealing his final image into its plaster casing.
By the time I had finished the sun had already begun to set. I double and triple checked my work. Editing was never my strong suit but I'd be damned if I read an unpolished work in front of an accredited author. I wanted to make sure my story was as close to being as professionally crafted as possible.
Feeling just barely over the edge of content with my final draft, I had placed my writing pen down. I looked into my bedroom mirror and took in a deep breath. Dark circles had formed around my eyes and I looked exhausted. My stomach still in knots from the day prior. If anything it had only gotten worse with this newest task.
But still, I swallowed my worry down and tucked the book under my arm.
I went to open my door and to my thankfulness the knob twisted with ease and allowed me an exit. I silently stepped down the stairs trying not to impose my presence within the manor any more than I already had.
Within just a moment I had reached the hallway towards the den and I had felt that it had doubled in size since I had last seen it.
It was as if the home itself was challenging me. It demanded me to take the long walk down the aisle with the audience of ghastly portraits being my only company. Only to worsen those thoughts was the flashback visions of the endless halls that had occupied my nightmares the night before.
What should happen if I walked towards the Den only to discover more hallways at the end of it? Would it have led to another night of anxious retreat down the unending stone passages of the Manor? Would I have run until I awoke in a cold sweat once more?
I swallowed the thoughts away and stood up straight. If nothing else I would give those portraits something proper to watch. I could fake my belonging if nothing else.
Sure enough I felt the cast down eyes of the monsters and ghouls that had watched my every step. Even so I didn't let my eyes fall down. I just kept on moving my feet forward.
Tonight was the night I showed Mr. Valentine that I had promise within me. Tonight was going to be the first real night of my tutorage.
Thankfully, once I reached the end of the hallway of aberrant observers, I found myself basked in the calming red glow of the Wordsmith's Den. Mr. Valentine sat in front of his fireplace with a long iron prod in his hand. He carefully pushed against the logs to ignite the fires flames higher. The warmth that had billowed from the fireplace contrasted itself against the cold drafts that emanated from the stone walls.
"Hello Mr. Valentine. Sorry if I'm late. I just wanted to finish up some editing before coming down here." Mr. Valentine smiled, although he didn't turn to face me. I only saw half of his face. His elderly skin had had been cast brilliantly in the glow of the den's flames.
"You're never late here in the Wordsmith. Nor are you ever early." He leaned back in his leather chair, the fabric stretching underneath his weight despite his slender frame. "So what can I look forward to hearing tonight?"
I once more swallowed the nervous spit that formed inside my mouth and looked down at the journal in my hands. "We'll it isn't much but for an afternoons work I hope you can enjoy it." Mr. Valentine rested his shoulders back into his chair and made himself comfortable. His hands rested on his lap.
"Please, share it with me. Word for word if you wouldn't mind." His voice soothed the air around him. A fact which only caused me to feel just slightly more anxious. There was something otherworldly about how he managed to control a room. His very presence felt unobtainable to a normal mans.
But needless to say I complied to every wish he asked of me.
I regaled the story as best as I could. I spoke of the mans panic. How his claustrophobia made his breath more labored and erratic. A fact that had caused his situation to worsen faster, and faster. Eventually leaving him nothing more than an outline of a man surrounded in plaster and wood.
Mr. Valentine simply sat through the whole thing. Neither smile nor grimace to any word spoken. It wasn't until my final word that he nodded in acknowledgement.
"Very interesting story. It already felt a little more real than your others. What inspired you?" I felt my face go pale as my thoughts drifted back to the very feeling of entrapment I had experienced within the Manor. How I felt suffocated inside.
But I refused to admit that fact to the man I had so admired.
"I think the idea in general is something interesting to me. I don't know how else to explain it." Mr. Valentine let the silence wrap around us. The quiet of the moment lasted just long enough to give me the feeling that he knew I was withholding the full truth from him.
"I suppose that's one way of seeing things. Though I do hope you come to terms with expressing the real reality here.
"And that reality is you're slowly believing your own stories. What you see in your mind isn't just a figment of your own imagination. You've imposed emotions, thoughts, goals and aspirations onto the man in your story. And now that mans dead.
"You didn't kill him though. You simply watched and documented all the facts down into your journal. Just as any proper documentarian would do." A strong gust of air billowed down the hallway behind us and hit the fire mercilessly. The light of the flames had dimmed but Mr. Valentine didn't use his iron prod to spark it back up.
Instead he choose to embrace the now darkened room.
"Do you know what the biggest rule for Horror is?" The darkness seeped into every crack and pour of the old mans face as the fires embers died.
"It's that you should never place yourself in the story unless you are prepared to die. Anything else would simply be unbelievable." I felt the hair on my body stand on end. He said it with only the raspy cloak of a whisper yet it felt as though he was making a veiled threat towards my very person.
A threat made with such a certainty behind it that I couldn't defend myself against it.
"You brought another journal here didn't you? To catalogue your stay? I do hope you get the final words in it by the end of your stay." A second billow of wind cascaded over us that finally killed the last of the embers.
I sat in darkness for a moment. My body neither running nor fighting its way through my predicament. I was frozen in fear.
I heard the same stretching of leather coming from Mr. Valentines chair that I had heard earlier. His trail of footsteps slowly turned away from me and headed their way towards the hall. "What a wonderful night for a horror story." I heard his voice whisper. It carried its way straight into my ear canal as though he stood right behind me.
I waited until I heard his footsteps disappear down the hall. I forced my eyes to adjust to the dim lighting that the windowpanes had allowed through. I gripped my chair tightly before standing up. My legs had begun shaking but I forced myself to remember the confidence that I had shown when I first approached the Den.
'Don't let them see you scared' I thought to myself. I kept repeating it over and over again as I walked towards the hallway. I let my eyes stay glued ahead. But just for a moment. When I had nearly past the last portrait, I allowed a single glance.
My vision didn't show a grotesque creature but rather an empty landscape.
My heart dropped.
I swung myself around and looked towards the other paintings and sure enough, all of them were of empty fields and abandoned homes. Not a single face to be seen.
I broke my facade of strength and darted back down the hallway towards the foyer. I heard nothing more than a pin drop through the entire Wordsmith on my way. My footsteps had echoed across the deserted halls like the clattering of porcelain falling onto a marble floor.
I didn't care. I needed to get into my room.
And so I did.
I slammed the door behind me and looked at the handle more closely. There was no way for me to lock it from the inside.
Footsteps had begun to make their way up the staircase upon this realization. My eyes darted around the moonlit room for anything I could use to help seal this place off from the hell outside. But nothing had shown its face. I did the only thing I could have thought to do in that panic. I pressed my back to the door and pushed all my weight against it.
It wasn't until I heard the door lock from behind me that my body relaxed from it's tense stature. My body slid to the floor and I tucked my legs up to my chest. Once again I had felt like such a fool.
Why was it that my mind couldn't think straight? Why was it that whenever night fell my brain clouded itself in fear beyond any rational explanation?
My stomach twisted and cramped inside of me. I grabbed onto it and made myself stand up on my trembling legs.
With a stagger I headed towards the bed frame. My vision had begun to blur. The second I folded over on top of the bed sheets my mind went dark. The last thing I saw was one of the portraits staring down at me from my window.
submitted by StrangeAccounts to nosleep [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 20:02 shutterbuug Hello

Just found this sub the other day, wish I’d found it sooner to be honest. I sent the “badgebot” a message and got a counter. To be honest, I’m not exactly sure which day in September was my last. I think it was the week after Labor Day, but I’m not sure so I picked 9/15. Feeling a little proud I’ve made it this far. I was in a bad place, drinking liquor daily and large amounts of it. My body didn’t even really recognize beer as alcohol anymore, I’m sure it did, but it certainly wouldn’t scratch the itch.
I like this group’s IWNDWYT. I won’t drink today, that’s for sure. Probably not tomorrow, but never know I guess.
In the past 265 days I’ve had all sorts of experiences, I’ve lost a job at a time I was expecting a promotion, I’ve gone to ball games, I’ve played with my kids, I got a new job which is the best I’ve ever had, I went on a vacation, I celebrated a birthday, had Christmas and new years, and done much needed soul searching and relationship building and rebuilding.
Just want to say I never want to go back to the place I was when I quit. I knew it would be a rough couple days. My last scotch was later in the night after that morning I decided to quit. I drank it in a pool of sweat, with shaky hands and a body that felt like it had electric pulses going through it, my heart was racing and it was clear I either needed to drink it or go to the ER for medical attention.
I hold that shameful memory pretty close to me. I’m a husband, father, hard worker, educated and in order to kick booze I had to have one in the middle of the night not to go to the hospital and continue the fight.
The first month I thought about whiskey everyday. By the third month, I had nearly convinced myself (as I had once before) that after a period of time I could drink again like a normal person. At day 265 I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that if I have one more drink a year will pass and if I stop I’ll be sweating in a bed with mini bottles on the nightstand trying not to go to the hospital. At least the last time I still had a wife and children under the same roof.
She never threatened, but I could tell that if there was another 72 hour dry out required, I wouldn’t have smiling kids and a wife that respected what I was doing to greet me when I came out of the room for a cup of coffee.
The comments I’ve seen here are inspiring and supportive and grateful to have found you.
submitted by shutterbuug to stopdrinking [link] [comments]

2023.06.07 19:51 TheMaskedOne2807 The Plague Doctor Chapter 40 (Words to remember)

Other stories by TheMaskedOne2807:The Oil Chapter 1 (Getting Back)
All Chapters: Wiki
“It is beautiful, is it not,” Solk said in a chipper yet slightly, almost Infinitesble sad tone of voice. “I am not surprised you are not the first to have been awestruck beyond measure at the slightest sight of this.”
Solk walked closer to Kenneth, presenting the object that fully had Kenneth’s attention.
Of all the things Solk could have brought with him, a painting was the last thing he expected.
Even in the light of many candles, Kenneth could see the beautiful dark wood frame expertly carved with what appeared to be illustrations of, as far as Kenneth knew, blue flowers all interconnected by one stem.
However, it was not the dark wooden frame or the pattern carved into it nor the solid gold plack at the very bottom center of the painting that filled Kenneth with a burning rage.
It was the person in the painting.
A black-furred Aki with a white-tipped tail wielding a giant shield, not unlike those of the roman people during Julius caesars time, as she charged into battle.
In her other hand, she was wielding a long sword against what Kenneth recognized to be a black Nok with a spear who charged at her. Thrusting its weapon with all its might against her shield.
“Jasha,” Kenneth muttered so silently. He barely managed to stave off his primary instinct to strike the very illustration before him.
“Huh? Did you say something?” Solk asked.
Kenneth quickly snapped out of his trance and relaxed his body.” No, I said nothing.”
“Are you sure I could have sworn you said… well, never mind,” Solk said dismissively as he let the painting rest on one of the floor juices barrels. “So, are you interested?”
‘If you only knew,’ Kenneth thought as he restrained himself from acting like he normally would whenever he saw Jasha.
“It is quite something,” Kenneth said in a fake cheery tone of voice. “Just out of curiosity, what was the other item you thought I would be interested in?”
“Some of the slaves,” Solk said casually.
‘Remember, you just need the vinegar,’ Kenneth told himself, not wanting to ever be a slaver as he stared down the painting.
“Forget I said anything, and let's talk about the masterpiece here,” Kenneth said.
“It is one of my most prized possessions,” Solk said proudly with only the slightest hint of something else in his voice.
“Well, it’s just if it is so prized, why would you have brought it to trade with me?” Kenneth asked, unsure if he asked because he wanted to know or just looking for an excuse to get it out of his sight, even though he just wanted to get the vinegar and be done with everything.
Solk lowered his gaze slightly, letting out a sigh. “It is not an easy thing to trade, but to keep it in my family would be an insult to my brother once I eventually meet him again.”
“How so?” Kenneth asked.
“Do-does the words engraved on the gold plack confuse you?” Solk asked.
As Kenneth took a closer look for the first time, he noticed some engravings in the gold plack. They seemed like letters, but none Kenneth had truly ever seen nor in any way understood.
“Sorry, but I can’t read that,” Kenneth responded.
“Really,” Solk exclaimed slightly. “But you seem like a learned man, one who’s been taught like us royals.”
“I can read; I just can’t read your langue,” Kenneth clarified.
“My langue. Does that mean you speak another aside from this?” Solk questioned curiously.
“Yes,” Kenneth answered.
“I see. Well, the engraving reads as follows,” Solk said, clearing his throat. “Perfection gifted to me by the gods to be created by mortal hands so we may witness the closest thing to perfection Aki-kind will ever achieve. ”
“Well, the painting is undyingly beautiful and so life-like,” Kenneth complimented while adverting his eyes a little away from Jasha. “But I don’t see how the words would confuse me.”
“Really. It doesn’t strike you as odd that the gods would give my brother a vision of the past just so he could paint this thing,” Solk said, slightly spiteful.
Solk became a little quiet after that. The only thing Kenneth heard for a little while was his breathing. It was calm, but at times it would slightly get louder.
“The value of this painting is quite hard to measure,” Solk suddenly said. “ Not only is it more detailed than any other I know of, but the sentimental value is equally hard to measure.”
“In truth, I have had others who have offered vast sums of gold for it, but it always seemed too cheap to me.”
“Cheap,” Kenneth repeated. “I must admit I don’t quite follow you. If you think vast sums of gold are too cheap, then why would you trade with me? I only have some unique items and blue flowers.”
Solk looked at Kenneth for a short while silently before he started to chuckle.
“Did I say something funny?” Kenneth asked.
“No,” Solk answered, letting his chuckling naturally subside. “your words simply reminded me of something similar to what I said many summers ago.”
Kenneth raised an eyebrow.
“I apologize for asking this, but would you let an old man tell you a story of the past and why no gold would ever be enough for me to trade this painting?” Solk asked.
“Sure, just go ahead,” Kenneth responded, feeling strangely intrigued by what Solk had to say.
“As kids, my brother and I were always close to one another. We used to play from the moment Ki appeared in the sky to the moment he was going to trade places with Di,” Solk started as he looked at the painting slightly fondly.
“However, as we got older, I started to notice he’d space out more often, looking into nothingness with a dull expression. He’d look at trees, furniture, buildings, even just mud, and dirt,” Solk sighed.
“Sometimes he’d even just hold a stick or rock and drag them on the ground.”
“Even as a child, I had heard some rumors of what happened to those who were misshapen, and I was worried my brother might be as well. I did my best hiding it from my father, mother, and sister as well as the servants.”
“At times, some noticed it to some extent, but a few lies here and there about him being tired seemed to work just fine.”
Solk then lowered his head and said in a somber voice. “Being that young, I truly believed I could keep my brother safe forever, but eventually, while I was sleeping, he wandered out of his room and started to act like he always did.”
“Even now, I clearly remember the feeling of pain I felt in my body when I learned my father had commissioned a local healer to healer my brother.”
“Soon thereafter, my brother was gone. I searched every nook and cranny of the house, but I never found him.”
“And worst of all,” Solk growled slightly. “When I confronted him and my mother about it, they played the fool. Denying his existence as if he was never even born.”
“After that, I hated my father with all my hearts. I wanted to get revenge no matter the cost, and I knew just how,” Solk said in a slightly menacing tone.
“His pride and life’s work was being a trader traveling to outpost selling and trading merchandise. I knew if I wanted to make him suffer, I needed to ruin it all.”
“Summer after summer, I pretended to be the perfect son, the one who wasn't misshapen, who listened to him when he explained and taught me about the family business all the while I waited for my chance.”
“And that day eventually came when my father fell ill just before his next trip to all the outposts. With his blessing, I traveled to each one of them, letting myself be the fool. Selling any and all items for almost worthless sums of coins and items.”
“I knew my father wasn’t going to get any better, and I just wanted him to know how he’d failed before he died.”
Solk took a deep breath as he let the painting down and turned around. “Even as I walked into his bedroom, I could barely contain my smile, but what I was met with was not my ill father, but my mother, sisters, and a healer.”
“If I had run, I would have made it, but I didn’t, and so my father died believing his life’s work and pride would be in safe hands.”
“He was my father, so it was expected of me to be sad, but unlike so much of my life, I didn’t lie or hide my feelings.”
“My life’s goal. The one moment I had been working toward. Gone snatched from my hands in the final moments.”
“His death left a bitter taste in my mouth, but I knew I would get everything I wanted once I met him again.”
“ However on, one night, when I was just relaxing in my room, my mother brought me a letter. It was my father's last words if he died before I got home.”
“I expected it to contain his finale words like how I would do great things for the family or that I had to remember the family and marry a god, royal woman.”
“But when I read it, I was in shock. My father confessed to me that all those summers ago, when my brother was taken away, he hadn’t been killed. He had was brought to a secret facility made only for misshapen royal children.”
“At a moment’s notice, I forgot about my plan to destroy the family business, and I spent no small amount of time and coins to find out where the facility was and get him out.”
“I was overjoyed to see him once more again, but he was different. Quieter than I remembered, and he spaced out more often.”
“He only talked to me and only stayed in his room, but one day when I arrived in his room, I found that on one of the walls, he, with the use of cutlery, had drawn an image of us when we were still together.”
“He was a true marvel to behold when he got to work. He was no longer spacing out, not while he was painting.”
“He was more focused than even some swordsmen in a fight, and his paintings alone were so beautiful that all the work I had done to ruin the family business just dispersed and was forgotten by all after just selling one of his works.”
“However, the good times didn’t last forever as eventually, my brother grew dissatisfied with selling his paintings.”
“He said to me, gold is too cheap a price to pay when you could share it with all, high and lowborn alike, instead of locking it away forever.”
“Of course, I laughed at this and reminded him that his work was too good for the eyes of a low-born. He grew angry with me after that and locked himself in his room.”
“For a long time then, I can remember we didn’t talk, but he still painted, and of course, I showed them off and sold them.”
“However, after so long of not talking with each other, my brother burst out of his room yelling, the gods have shown me perfection.”
“I was confused, but before I even had a chance to ask anything, he started to paint working while Ki and Di traded places many times.”
Once they had traded places for the third time, I grew very worried and got some of the servants to force the door to his room open.”
“All I remember after that,” Solk said in a saddened tone of voice. “Was him lying on the floor as servants lifted him up on his bed and rushed out to get a healer.”
“I didn’t move or react. I only watched as my brother slowly died, saying his last words, the ones I’ve engraved in his final work.”
“Wow… I…. that was kind of heavy,” Kenneth said, not knowing what else to say.
“Do you now understand why it’s hard to sell?” Solk asked as he turned around and picked up the painting. “My brother wanted his work to be seen and not just sold off and hidden away.”
“I get it,” Kenneth said, crossing his arms. “You can’t just trade it for gold like all the others he made, but at the same time, you can’t just keep it hidden away.”
“I don’t know If I’m the ideal person to buy this painting, but I’ll try to honor the memory of you, brother.”
“I truly hope you’ll do better than I have,” Solk said shamefully.
Kenneth walked along the street, passing whispering Aki after whispering Aki while holding the panting.
There had been a little haggling but nothing worth mentioning.
Kenneth wasn’t truly sure how to feel about anything that had happened lately, but he did know one thing. He was tired and just wanted a break.
With that in mind, he just walked straight home and threw himself on his bed, but of course, not before carefully placing the painting he’d bought on the floor.
He wasn’t too tired to actually sleep, so he just let himself relax and think about stuff like how many times people have tried to behead him and other such fun things.
Kenneth wasn’t sure how long he stayed in bed, but eventually, the door to the living room swung open.
Kenneth opened one eye and saw it was Nya.
“There you are,” She said. “You know how hard it is to find you?”
“I can imagine,” Kenneth responded.
“So, how does it feel?” Nya asked teasingly.
“How does what feel?” Kenneth asked back as she sat down on her bed.
Oh, I don’t know,” Nya said sarcastically. “Perhaps healing the burning death, a feat, mind you, only Uloko and the combined fortitude of a hundred healers have ever managed to do.”
“I… suppose it feels good,” Kenneth answered in a bored tone of voice.
“You could sound a little more excited, you know,” Nya chuckled, her tail swinging from side to side as she lay on her side. “Do you even know what the people of the outpost are saying?”
“Let me guess,” Kenneth said, his deep voice even deeper and sounding almost like a frog's ribbit in a strange way. “Oh, finally, the abomination is leaving. I hope I’m the one who gets to burn down the wagon he’s in.”
“Well, yes, there was a little of that in the beginning,” Nya admitted. “But after that, every time Ki and Di traded placed, more and more of that kind of talk died down and was replaced with questions.”
“Why isn’t the wagon getting burned yet? The abomination is probably only buying time, right? You don’t really think it can do it, right? Why is the food tasting so good now with the abomination gone?”
“Now everyone is talking about how you healed the burning death and that the party tonight is only because of you,” Nya said in a happy tone of voice.
“Oh really,” Kenneth responded, only really half listening.
“Wait, what party,” Kenneth said, bewildered, sitting up.
“Yes, not too long ago, the merchant said he’d throw a party in honor of his son's health and good fortune,” Nya said happily as she rolled in bed excitedly, her mouth getting wetter at the thought of floor juice.
“If I hadn’t said before, I’ll say it now. Thanks, I didn’t think I’d get something good to drink this year.”
“Errrrr… don’t mention it,” Kenneth said, slightly confused.
For a moment, he thought about what he’d just been told, and he could help but chuckle, “That sly old fox.”
“Did you say something?” Nya asked as she sat up.
“It was nothing,” Kenneth responded, still chuckling.
“Oooooooooooooooookay,” Nya responded.
Kenneth thought it was strang how she said it and looked over, but as he did, Nya fell on her knees.
“Nya, are you okay!” Kenneth yelled as he jumped out of bed.
She didn’t respond; she only pointed straight ahead and seemed to try and say something but couldn’t.
Kenneth followed the finger and saw it was the painting she was pointing at.
“Oh, that,” Kenneth said, relieved. “I bought it from Solk, the merchant.”
“I-I-I-I… so…” Nya stuttered, unable to say anything coherent.
“Noktato,” Nya eventually uttered in her somewhat dazed state.
“Who?” Kenneth asked.
“You don’t know who Noktato is!” Nya exclaimed as she looked at him as if he was brain-dead until she remembered who she was talking to. “Oh, for a moment, I forgot you aren’t. Never mind.”
“Noktato is the biggest heretic of them all, bigger than even Silvaka. Do you even know what this painting depicts?” Nya said, her tail and her ears moving almost independently of her body.
“Can’t say that I do,” Kenneth said, sitting back on the bed. “Kind of been teaching more than I’ve been taught.”
“Well, then, how about I educate you,” Nya said as she got off her knees. “This painting depicts the beginning of the end. Or the first major battle in the four-hundred-year war on the flatlands.”
“More precisely, it depicts the battle between the two champions, Noktato, the accursed spear, and the blessed Akina, the mighty shield.”
“Akina!” Kenneth uttered in surprise.
(Patreon): Three chapters early access and artwork. Also, a 100+ page story I wrote prior to the posting of The Plague Doctor for all members.
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