Trace gallagher eyes

I (19MTF) cheated on my wife with my best friend

2023.02.03 03:05 AbqAnon2622 I (19MTF) cheated on my wife with my best friend

I (19MTF) cheated on my wife (20F) with my best friend (18 F) who herself was cheating on her boyfriend (21M). To start this is clearly a throwaway account. My wife and I are long distance. She goes to school in Michigan and I'm stuck in New Mexico due to family stuff. I haven't seen her in months and the next time we see eachother is next month. Earlier today my best friend and I were smoking in my car and she asked me to teach her how to suck dick. We agreed it was purely for learning purposes. We moved my car to an alley, because we were too far from both of our homes, covered the windows, turned on some music, and got in the back seat. Both her and her boyfriend are virgins, so she had no clue about anything, we decided to ease into it with some light kissing which quickly turned into a much more passionate make out. This is where I feel things took a shift. I stopped feeling like this was an educational experience and more so an act of lust. She unbuttoned my shirt, I took off hers, we made out, she sucked my nipples for a bit, and finally we took off our pants. When she pulled mine down she saw my self-harm scars. She traced them with her fingers and asked if I wanted to see hers. I nodded and she undid her belt and pulled off her pants. Hers were definitely more recent than mine (mine were a week old and her were probably from the previous night) and I was taken a little aback. She must of saw the look on my face because she hurried to cover herself again. I stopped her and told her it was alright. I then leaned down and kissed her thighs where she cut herself. I asked if she was ready to see my penis and she said yes after thinking for a second. I pulled my underwear off and showed her. She froze here and said she didn't want to continue with that. I pulled my pants back up and she laid down on my lap. I asked if she was alright and she said yes. She looked up and kissed me. We continued making out for a few minutes before I drove her back to class. I offered to continue tomorrow and she said she would consider. Since then she has said she regrets the whole thing doesn't want to continue. I do not regret anything. I still love my wife, but I could see passion in my friend's eyes. I know she enjoyed it, and I believe she shares similar feelings to me. At the moment me, her, a couple of my close friends, and possibly her boyfriend know what happened.
submitted by AbqAnon2622 to cheating_confessions [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 02:58 cyngzor Insight into the kinda tool used to make this art (it's not photoshop) and how I know

Insight into the kinda tool used to make this art (it's not photoshop) and how I know
So reading over the current document on what we know under art style there is some problems with the assertions in this section that I wish to highlight, as there are assumptions people are making based on today's technology as opposed to what would have been used at the time this fabric design was made
There is a link in that document to a youtube tutorial on how to 'easily' recreate the style in photoshop, however that youtube video was from 2020 using a PS version that would not have been available then (the tutorial appears to be using a CC version but I'm not going to deep dive into that to figure out which version the tutorial uses as it is a moot point. The point is whatever that tutorial is using is NOT the same version of the software that would have been used, nor the same technique, and this is important for reasons I'll explain).
Prior to the cloud based subscriptions of photoshop, many designers/artists would use the same photoshop version for years, getting comfortable with the UI and not wanting to have to update our skills with each new version. The idea of updating your design skill set with each new platform rollout is VERY VERY recent. Youtube was fairly new and good tutorials were MUCH harder to find or expensive. Regardless, if the fabric can be sourced to be created circa 2009, then they would most likely have used a CS (not a CC version), likely as far back as CS2 (released in 2005) but I'm betting on CS3 based on what I'm seeing from the image of Celebrity Number 6... and it is most likely they used ILLUSTRATOR (or even inkscape if not an adobe product) as that is how you did this style most often BACK THEN.
And the reason I say likely CS3 and ILLUSTRATOR, is because what is happening on the face, particularly the left eye, which was a common quirk of Illustrator around this time...
I'LL EXPLAIN
distortion (bubbling) of highlight into eye--common to image trace
So you see the highlight on the left cheek that seems to bubble up and go right into the lower lid of the eye (removing the detail completely) and into the iris itself, and again on the chin there is that wonky kind of bump that blends in with the jaw/neck
unnatural shape on chin--common to using image trace at this time
these kind of 'minor' (or major) distortions were common annoying quirk when using particular tools in inkscape or illustrator (CS2, CS3, CS4) at that time before the tools became more sophisticated/easier to use/preserve details
here is a tutorial using the method that would have been used using Illustrator CS3 around that time:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oIaNSI_J36Q [ETA: I realize this tutorial now is for CC version but does illustrate closer the type of way we would have done it back then]
here's another one (not in English) using CS3 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yPQRilfx-ls
So you can see there is the basic 'image trace' and then the basic image trace allows for other preset options like such as '3 color', 'black & white logo', etc.
Back during the late aughts, we were like THIS IS AMAZING and SO EASY, however, these presets would often lead to unwanted distortions like you see with the highlight of the cheek blowing up into the eyeball, you can also see this same kind of distortion happening with the hair on the left side where it has that three pronged almost pitch fork coming out of it
distortion on hair giving an almost whiptail effect common to using 'image trace'
This is why in the other identified celebrity faces on the fabric you can see where certain faces have had a lot of detailed blowed out (like losing a lot of details on the nose outside of the nostrils)
I imagine the reason Celebrity 6 has more markers of this distortion is likely the OG reference image, being darker on the left side, meant creating more distortion on the left side while using the same preset across the entire image, whereas the other images have even enough contrast on both sides of the face that would prevent these areas of distortion from happening (where details are more 'lost' than distorted)
WHICH MEANS...
the right side of the face is more 'true' to the original image, and the real verification should be based 1) matching the ear and right side face 2) recreating the distortion in the left using prolly CS3 if anyone has that version kicking around (mine has long since been gone) but you would also have to have it installed on an old version of windows as well and hope you can still find a license
i'm betting each of these images can be recreated using one of the presets from image trace from likely CS3 with some modifications in the settings (I think the feature was introduced in CS2, and with each new version of CS the distortions got less of an issue)
Here's another tutorial from 12 years ago, much more in depth, but would be MUCH closer to the process that would have been used to create these celebrity faces: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MbLqWDDwv8M&t=5s
ONE LAST POINT
In terms of using Getty's library to source the image; libraries CHANGE, just because you can't find an image that matches Getty's library doesn't mean that they had an image that matched circa this time period... just putting that out there
P.S. Pop Art is a bit of a misnomer (I HAVE A DEGREE in Art History/Theory)... its fine to say pop art style, but it's not really.... back then we would have said VECTORIZE photos as the technique; which might be important when googling this style (and using the tools to bring up searches from that time period)
Added notes: 1) sometimes the name of this tool changes from versions (image trace/live trace) 2) for funsies this is the oldest youtube tutorial I could find on this technique (using CS2 on Sep 2007)... you can see how things have come along way since then https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i0yNFH99cWg 3) make sure you check out CottsFace's comment below on how a different technique was used on the hair styling and other features
Version history: 1) edited to add note above/and note regarding first youtube link, grammar clean up 2) added notes 2 & 3
submitted by cyngzor to CelebrityNumberSix [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 02:57 man_and_a_symbol Ok am I a maniac or does anyone else do this?

On some Anki cards instead of saying the 'answer' out loud or even mumbling it, I just close my eyes for a second or two and Imagine the concept/thing and label it in my mind.
Like for Webers law I came up with an example for it and instead of explaining the law I just imagine the example and boom I can recall it very quickly. With some sensory pathways I will just imagine the aisound/light going into the appropriate thing and try to 'trace' it's way through my body in my mind while labeling the names in my head....
Is this weird? Been averaging 77% UWorld so far....
submitted by man_and_a_symbol to Mcat [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 02:40 thomaspbi First Build, I was leaning towards prebuilt but reddit convinced me otherwise

  1. >**What will you be doing with this PC? Be as specific as possible, and include specific games or programs you will be using.**
  2. I have my eye on Star citizen as my first purchase, I love immersive RPG gaming and RTS, I also would like to use it for music production with Abelton Live, and I plan on using it to stream as well as create video content, I also find myself opening multiple applications together (music production while I play a video game)
  3. >**What is your maximum budget before rebates/shipping/taxes?**
  4. * I would like to stay under 2k, however I understand this is a tall order so if you guys truly think going beyond is necessary I have some extra cash lying around
  5. >**When do you plan on building/buying the PC? Note: beyond a week or two from today means any build you receive will be out of date when you want to buy.**
  6. ASAP bb
  7. >**What, exactly, do you need included in the budget? (ToweOS/monitokeyboard/mouse/etc\)**
  8. * Tower and os in the budget, if you want to recommend Keyboard/ monito mouse outside of budget please go for it
  9. >**Which country (and state/province) will you be purchasing the parts in? If you're in US, do you have access to a Microcenter location?**
  10. US Miami FL, no Micro Center
  11. >**If reusing any parts (including monitor(s)/keyboard/mouse/etc), what parts will you be reusing? Brands and models are appreciated.**
  12. Samsung odyssey 3 I believe as a monitor
  13. >**Will you be overclocking? If yes, are you interested in overclocking right away, or down the line? CPU and/or GPU?**
  14. No ( can't hurt to have the option though)
  15. >**Are there any specific features or items you want/need in the build? (ex: SSD, large amount of storage or a RAID setup, CUDA or OpenCL support, etc)**
  16. I plan on making content for streaming/YouTube/music production/ I would like ray tracing/I want multiple monitors, 2-3, 4k gaming is not a must but wold interest me
  17. >**Do you have any specific case preferences (Size like ITX/microATX/mid-towefull-tower, styles, colors, window or not, LED lighting, etc), or a particular color theme preference for the components?**
  18. Yes cool fancy lights please and I want to see inside, I also like spinning parts, as far as color theme anything black or white or a mix of the two
  19. >**Do you need a copy of Windows included in the budget? If you do need one included, do you have a preference?**
  20. Yes I would like a copy of windows 10 as I play older games for the nostalgia and windows 11 for content creation
  21. Thanks guys I really appreciate anyone who takes the time to help me out, it means so much as the process is confusing and I don't have anyone else to help me!
submitted by thomaspbi to buildapcforme [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 02:29 middleoflidl A Little Town Called Woe

I had walked these cobbled streets before. I had climbed the poplar tree at the walled off park by the pharmacy and broken my ankle tripping over the dodgy step with the rickety slab on Stonemason Way. This place had been home to me once, so why did it feel so very foreign? Woe, with a capital W; A sad little name for a town. It seemed to me that suffering had been etched into the stone they had built the place with. We didn’t stand a chance, not here.
I walked with purpose towards my destination with unease tugging at my gut. The schoolhouse was in a lonely little street under the shadow of a great mountain called Ben Thagad. I crossed the threshold into the playground with apprehension.
The hop-scotch was faded and the chute was rusted orange. The vines that climbed up the red-brick walls were withered and now hung limp. The years had been unkind to my old school.
“Harry!” An oddly familiar voice came from the climbing frame. It belonged to a man dressed in a shoddy leather jacket. He was leant against the playground equipment with a rollup in-between his lips that smelt a little too pungent to be tobacco.
No - couldn’t be? “Been what - fifteen years - do you even remember me?”
With a sad realization I put a warmly familiar name to the unkempt individual.
“Bertie. You’ve grown a beard.” If the years had been unkind to the schoolyard, they had been ruthless with Robert Grieves, otherwise known as Bertie, my old best friend. He was skinny, gaunt and didn’t look like he’d shaved in a fortnight.
“I didn’t reckon you’d come, nobody did. How’s the big city fancy pants.” He slapped me on the shoulder as a brother might have to a sibling.
“It’s different, that’s for sure. In truth I didn’t come home for the reunion - I was in the area anyway to visit my mum in St Fry’s and thought I may as well pop over to see what this was all about - school reunions aren’t really my thing.” I spoke candidly, Bertie twitched and held out his spliff. I shook my head. I’d had my fair share of the devil’s lettuce at university and it gave me splitting migraines.
“All the crews here. Charlie, Cabbage, Wee Jimmy - the FBI.” Bertie chuckled.
The FBI, the crappy name of our little rag-tag group of misfits. We’d built tree-houses, climbed mountains and tried to solve -
“It’s weird Harry, I had a dream last night that she was here. Miss Salt - that she was going to turn up at the reunion. I thought it was real for a second. When I woke up all the hairs on my arms were standing up...” Bertie grimaced.
We entered the school hall and awkwardly shuffled around the gymnasium, socialising and bragging, Bertie didn’t do much of the latter. I saw a few familiar faces; teachers I recalled as young, were now prostrated by many years of the education system. We found Cabbage and Wee Jimmy - they worked together at the mechanic's on Main street.
Charlie was there too, he had a husband and three kids and Cabbage seemed uneasy around him for this very reason.
I caught up with Bethany Small too - she was a teacher at the school now, bright and happy. She was a walking miracle, when she was young she had leukaemia, it was terminal. Against all odds she made it. The locals like to brag it was the quality of the tap water.
When the night was nearly over I found Bertie again, stood at her old photo amidst a collection of many other teachers and principals. Dusty and lonely on the wall she sat; Miss Salt.
It takes a special sort of person to become etched into your mind so perfectly that you can still see their face clear as day twenty years later. Miss Salt had been beautiful with big rosy-pink cheeks and lips like rosebuds. She only ever wore red and even her hair had been a lovely rich auburn. She’d been everyone's first crush.
She was kind too. Do you know how rare that is? someone beautiful and kind. Every Friday morning she’d bring giant blueberry muffins into class and let us watch videos instead of equations.
Then one Friday she was gone and we never saw her again. She vanished from Woe as if she had never been here at all. We searched for her, Bertie and me most of all. We weren’t convinced she’d just left for another job, for surely she would have said goodbye first?
We formed the FBI to look for her. None of the adults would tell us where she went, and we got into our heads that they were holding her hostage somewhere as she had fed us too many blueberry muffins. Childhood antics - the sort bored young minds concoct in small boring towns.
“Remember that time we scoped out Mr Walker’s property cause we caught him digging a hole in his garden?” Bertie chuckled as he took a fistful of muffins he’d pinched from the buffet table out his pockets. He shovelled them into his mouth with ruthless proficiency.
“Poor plonker, it turned out he was digging a hole for his cat, not a body. Gave us a right good hit with that rake of his. Miss Salt's probably teaching at some private school now. Living it up." I sighed wistfully. I hoped she was; that she’d gotten out of this depressing pit of despair like I had.
"I know it can’t be easy for you to be back here after your dad.” Bertie said to me softly after a moment’s silence. “I’m glad you got out. Got free of this place, I mean. Do yourself a favour and don’t stay too long, or you’ll end up like me. High as a kite and no better place to be on a saturday than school - or like your - like your dad.”
I saw it again; blue feet dangling and the light fixture half-pulled out of the wall as the weight of a man, garrotted with rope pulled it down. I still don’t know why he did it.
“What do you say we go to the Fork and Sheep?” Bertie whispered to me, face squinted as he swirled a mouthful of cheap wine. “I want something stronger than this - this - echo falls shit.”
The Fork and Sheep was our local; the only pub in town. Outsiders and city-folk don't understand how important the local pub is. It’s a hub; a melting pot of personalities and gossip. Town halls sit empty while politics is poured into pint glasses and slot machines. We’d been drinking there since we’d been old enough to source fake IDs.
Bertie and I found a quiet booth in the corner, just beside the women’s toilets. The place stunk of stale ale and the floors, deep mahogany, were sticky and grimy.
“There’s something I never told you, Harry, I’ve been wanting to all night.” Bertie said, his voice was wavering and weary. I could taste the weed and lager on his breath from across the table. “It’s about Miss Salt.”
“Bertie, we were kids who missed our favourite teacher, bored out of our minds and desperate for something exciting to happen in our little dump of a town.” I leaned across the table. “Nothing happened to her. Get it out of your head alright? “
“You remember it, I know you do.” Bertie’s voice was low. He spoke with fluent paranoia only a stoner could muster. “You remember but you don’t want to, you’ve put it to the back of your head where you don’t have to find it everyday, that little niggle, that raw tug of instinctual dread. That night, Harry, you know the one, the night where all the adults went up the mountain.”
I see it now. An empty bed, my father’s jacket absent from it’s hook and the patio doors wide open. The imprint of my mother’s boots in the wet mud outside and the dim crowd of torchlight walking up the hill towards the mountain - towards Ben Thagad; a slow procession of trance-like light.
“So they went for a hike, what of it?” I grunted.
“In the cold of the night, every single one, without telling the kids? Shame they didn’t have the real FBI on it - just us silly kids. Bet Fox Mulder woulda had something to say.” Bertie looked around the pub suspiciously. He reached into his pocket and pulled it out, a journal so familiar to me I almost recoiled at the sight of it.
THE FBI - INVESTIGATION INTO THE DISAPPEARANCE OF GUINEVERE SALT
“I’m not doing this with you Bertie, not tonight. I wish you well but I’m not partaking in your delusions, not anymore. I grew up.” I stood up. The scraping of my chair brought all the eyes in the room to us and for the briefest of moments I felt as odd and as paranoid as Bertie.
“Just take it, read it. You’ll see it if you do - like I do. We were kids then, you’re right, we were too innocent to imagine.” He thrusted the book at me.
I felt too awkward to reject him so I departed from the Fork and Sheep and Bertie with the weighty journal in tow.
When I returned home that night, as midnight encroached I found that sleep eluded me. I found myself in my tired emptiness cleaving to those worn and aged pages.

COLLECTED EVIDENCE (SO FAR)
Strand of red hair from firepit at the top of the mountain.
Red lipstick casing found in the burn with scorch marks
Mud sample from Harry’s dad’s shoe.
Cabbage’s mum’s scarf with speck of blood on it.
One adult molar tooth found by firepit (Probably a deer’s - Harry)
Miss Salt’s rosary beads taken from Bethany Small’s locker
Strange vibrating device found in Charlie’s mom’s bedside drawer

SUMMARY OF EVENTS OF 12/04/1980 - by Robert Grieves
Miss Salt leaves class early at 3pm and allows us to have free time until the school bell rings. She seems flustered and keeps looking over her shoulder. Bethany Small is very sick and is always upset, so Miss Salt gives her her rosary beads and a cuddle on the way out.
Bethaani Samll’s got a BALDY - CABBAGEEE - ROFL
Cabbage’s father fixes a lock onto his bedroom door on the outside. Harry’s dad comes home from work early and spends time in the garage. Charlie’s mum is groaning in her bedroom and is surprised when Charlie gets home from school early. My parents, are absent as usual. Wee Jimmy said that his dad was cutting firewood, and lots of it, even though it’s summer.
That night at approximately 2am, Cabbage hears his parents leave. He’s unable to follow them as his door has been locked. Wee Jimmy notes that his parents too were gone that night, but he was undisturbed by this, instead using their absence to eat butter straight out of the tub. Charlie slept through the night.
Harry’s account is most interesting. He wakes up and finds his parents gone as well as their coats - he goes outside and investigates. His house has a view up the mountain and he sees lots of adults walking up the mountain with torches. He says it must have been at least half the town.
Miss Salt is never seen again.

INTERVIEW WITH PRINCIPAL PHELPS - By Robert Grieves and Harry McBride.
RG : Where is Miss Salt Principal?
P: Get back to class
HM: She promised she’d give us feedback on our homework sir, do you know when she will be returning?
P: She isn’t returning. I will assess future assignments until a replacement is procured. Back to class.
RG: We know you were up the mountain two nights ago.
Principal Phelps looks uneasy and is silent.
P: Detention. Now!

INTERESTING INFORMATION MISC
Ben Thagadh roughly means “chosen mountain” in gaelic - is this important?
Miss Salt was from Oxfordshire - Was she killed because she is an outsider?
The buzzing device found in Charlie’s mums’ drawer stopped working after we played with it for a while and had sticky residue on it.
We saw Mr Jenkin’s burying something in his garden. Upon investigation we found it was his dog. He hit me with a rake. Mr Jenkins has a history of violent behaviour.
Everyone had pork broth for breakfast. Wee Jimmy says his tasted funny and had a bit of muscle in it.
Bethany Small’s hair has grown back and Principal Phelp’s bald patch has gone.
My mum gave me a cuddle, she never does this, she said she was sorry and regrets bringing me into such an awful world.
Charlie's mums shopping list we found in the rubbish bin that listed the following: Carrot's, Spuds, Lube, Butcher's twine, hair shaver, tweezers, duct tape, beef stock cube.
Harry’s dad dies. Wee Jimmy’s dad told him it was suicide, but Harry insists he died fighting a bear that broke in to their house.

I gulped and dropped the journal to my knees. I felt it. I felt that feeling of dread and disgust gathering at the back of my head- the gnawing tog that Bertie so eloquently relayed. I tried to push it down, to explain it away, but it wouldn’t go. It was part of me now. It was as Bertie described, an instinctive feeling, as primal as it was undeniable.
I kept reading. Bertie had been a prolific writer and the journal was packed full. There were drawings of Miss Salt and maps of the mountain and the town. As the journal went on the handwriting grew neater and the dates that ordered the pages grew more recent.
Talk of Charlie’s mother’s vibrator was abandoned and replaced with complex timelines of how Miss Salt went from teaching us to gone without a trace. There were long sprawling texts on mayan ritual sacrifice and UFO activity in the mountains of Scotland. There talk of shared mental delusions. ROANOKE had been scrawled, so harshly that the pages had been bent from the pressure applied by the mad scribe.
He had never stopped.
I had left for university and found a job in the bank. Charlie had come out the closet that had bound him for so long and found a husband and happiness. Wee Jimmy and Cabbage had fixed god knows how many cars and. through all of it - all those long empty years -Robert Grieves, my dear Bertie, had kept this journal.

RITUAL SACRIFICE
Throught out history Woe has been host to Celts, pagans and picts. All but the Celts have a demonstrated proclivity towards human sacrifice. The Picts in particular are interesting to consider.
It is said that when the Roman empire came to Scotland to add it to its empire, the picts were the solitary reason for their inability to progress north. So frightened were they that they built a giant wall to keep them out of Roman lands.
Tall, red-headed and fierce warriors they were, but also deeply in touch with forces that the civilised Romans had long since abandoned for Papyrus and sewage systems.
Rowan McKintyre, author of Pictish Runes and Magical Systems, states that the "picts often consulted with the stars" and that they would often offer sacrifices on mountains and hills or "any high ground to maintain a close distance to the stars."
Cecilia Corday in her seminal work Pictish Architecture in the Highlands, states that there was indentation suggestive of a wooden temple on the top of Ben Thagad in Woe.

UFO SIGHTINGS IN WOE
1862 - English author George Hancock on a visit to Woe states that he saw a a string of odd lights in the sky above Ben Thagad. Curious he hiked the mountain and found a strange stone with a Pictish rune on it. This was an interesting archaeological find and is now in the Kelvingrove Art museum.
1920 - There's an article in a local newspaper explaining the interaction between a woman named Heather Tipple and a strange light whilst hiking Thagad. She said it came towards her and danced around her head. (Fairy activity??)

The last entry was his magnum opus - a collation of all his theories and work - a case so well-presented it might have convinced even the most dubious of jury’s.

WHAT HAPPENED THAT NIGHT
Woe is a sick town, in every way imaginable. Tragedy marks this land and the mountain we live under. Ben Thagadh - The Chosen Mountain - Chosen for what? A holy place? I don’t think so. There is nothing holy about that dreaded peak. You can still see it, the soft divet in the land from where the firepit was all those years ago, the firepit where she was cooked alive.
Miss Salt had felt uneasy for a while. She had felt the incessant stares on her back and noticed the whispering. She did not know just what she was in for - otherwise she would have surely fled - she ignored that feeling of raw unexplainable fear. I so very wish she hadn’t.
Perhaps it was suggested by Bethany Small’s mother. Bethany was terminally ill with almost no hope of survival. Desperation is a funny motivator. Maybe it was her father, or maybe it was Principal Phelps who wanted his hair back.
The townsfolk agreed, some grudgingly, others eagerly. None refused, perhaps fearful that they might be offered instead. They picked a date and a time and carried out their task with ruthless proficiency.
Perhaps it was Mr Jenkin’s that grabbed her that night, I don’t know, he was certainly strong enough. They all gathered and took her up that mountain. They weren’t careful enough. They left behind a tooth and a lipstick case, all that was left to mark her fleeting presence.
Some couldn’t live with themselves after the gory act. Harry’s father found refuge in the noose. Bethany Small’s mother is addicted to prescription painkillers and Mr Jenkins drinks enough to warrant a brewery in his name.
It’s strange, we all think we saw her for the last time at school. I do not believe that to be true. We saw her once more, we just didn’t know it was her.
We all had the same pork broth at breakfast that morning, but it was not pork, not really.
My grandma always said that there was nothing like a broth to get the sick feeling well again. Woe needed a lot of broth.
I worry that it will soon need more.
submitted by middleoflidl to nosleep [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 02:22 AfternoonGlory Bi-Daily Song Discussion #207: Fort Knox

Studio Version SUGGESTED SCALE: 1-4: Not good. Regularly skip. 5: It’s okay, but I might have to be in the right mood to listen to it. 6: Slightly better than average. I won’t skip it, but I wouldn’t choose to put it on. 7: This is a good song. I enjoy it quite a bit. 8-9: Really enjoyable songs. I rank them pretty high overall. 10: Masterpiece, magnum opus, or similar terminology.
Different Gear, Still Speeding - (Average: 6.57/10)
1) Four Letter Word - 7.84/10
2) Millionaire - 6.87/10
3) The Roller - 7.62/10
4) Beatles And Stones - 6.50/10
5) Wind Up Dream - 6.30/10
6) Bring The Light - 5.68/10
7) For Anyone - 5.00/10
8) Kill For A Dream - 6.66/10
9) Standing On The Edge Of The Noise - 6.05/10
10) Wigwam - 5.58/10
11) Three Ring Circus - 5.50/10
12) The Beat Goes On - 8.44/10
13) The Morning Son - 7.36/10
Singles/Bonus
1) Man Of Misery - 4.86/10
2) Sons Of The Stage - 6.92/10
3) World Outside My Room - 6.88/10
4) Two Of A Kind - 4.12/10
5) In The Bubble With A Bullet - 7.46/10
6) Across The Universe - 7.71/10
Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds - (Average: 8.12/10)
1) Everybody's On The Run - 8.86/10
2) Dream On - 7.04/10
3) If I Had A Gun... - 9.33/10
4) The Death Of You And Me - 8.52/10
5) [I Wanna Live In A Dream In My] Record Machine - 7.75/10
6) AKA... What A Life! - 8.14/10
7) Soldier Boys And Jesus Freaks - 7.08/10
8) AKA... Broken Arrow - 8.42/10
9) [Stranded On] The Wrong Beach - 8.60/10
10) Stop The Clocks - 7.50/10
Singles/Bonus
1) A Simple Game Of Genius - 9.32/10
2) Alone On The Rope - 9.13/10
3) The Good Rebel - 7.05/10
4) Let The Lord Shine A Light On Me - 9.33/10
5) I'd Pick You Every Time - 6.70/10
BE (Average: 6.87/10)
1) Flick Of The Finger - 8.67/10
2) Soul Love - 7.07/10
3) Face The Crowd - 6.00/10
4) Second Bite Of The Apple - 4.87/10
5) Soon Come Tomorrow - 7.41/10
6) Iz Rite - 7.22/10
7) I'm Just Saying - 7.16/10
8) Don't Brother Me - 5.50/10
9) Shine A Light - 5.77/10
10) Ballroom Figured - 8.00/10
11) Start Anew - 7.96/10
Singles/Bonus
1) Dreaming Of Some Space - 3.33/10
2) The World's Not Set In Stone - 5.72/10
3) Back After The Break - 7.23/10
4) Off At The Next Exit - 8.31/10
5) Girls In Uniform - 5.28/10
6) Evil Eye - 7.05/10
Chasing Yesterday (Average: 8.33/10)
1) Riverman - 9.01/10
2) In The Heat Of The Moment - 8.03/10
3) The Girl With X-Ray Eyes - 7.62/10
4) Lock All The Doors - 8.11/10
5) The Dying Of The Light - 9.16/10
6) The Right Stuff - 8.60/10
7) While The Song Remains The Same - 8.51/10
8) The Mexican - 6.91/10
9) You Know We Can't Go Back - 8.39/10
10) Ballad Of The Mighty I - 8.99/10
Singles/Bonus
1) Do The Damage - 7.15/10
2) Revolution Song - 7.47/10
3) Freaky Teeth - 7.89/10
4) Leave My Guitar Alone - 7.12/10
5) Here's A Candle (For Your Birthday Cake) - 6.25/10
As You Were (Average: 7.77/10)
1) Wall Of Glass - 7.92/10
2) Bold - 8.15/10
3) Greedy Soul - 7.78/10
4) Paper Crown - 8.11/10
5) For What It's Worth - 8.12/10
6) When I'm In Need - 6.48/10
7) You Better Run - 6.95/10
8) I Get By - 7.32/10
9) Chinatown - 7.08/10
10) Come Back To Me - 8.58/10
11) Universal Gleam - 7.63/10
12) I've All I Need - 9.12/10
Singles/Bonus
1) Doesn't Have To Be That Way - 7.50/10
2) All My People / All Mankind - 6.15/10
3) I Never Wanna Be Like You - 5.62/10
Who Built The Moon?
1) Fort Knox - ?
submitted by AfternoonGlory to oasis [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 01:44 girl_from_the_crypt Warnings to the wannabe cryptid hunters: I've got major fucking daddy issues

My heart still pounding wildly, I got out of the bathtub, dried myself off and got dressed. I trotted down the stairs to join my brother in the living room. He was holding onto his cell phone with a white-knocked grip. When he looked up at me, it was with wide, empty eyes.
"That was Dad," he told me. "I just got off the phone with him."
"What did he say?" I asked, the hairs on my neck standing on end.
"Okay, so… he picked up the third time I called and I told him I was here. With you." Casimir let out a deep sigh, raking a slender hand through his hair. "I think he kind of got an idea about what was going on then already. He went all quiet and then I said, we know what you did, and he said he wanted to come over. He'll be here in a few days."
I swallowed thickly. "He will?"
"Yeah." Cas lightly kicked the wooden floorboards. "That's okay with you, right?"
"I guess so. But this isn't gonna end well. He's gonna… I-I'll have to…" My voice faltered. "I mean, he killed people. He wanted to kill the woods." Probably even me, I added in my mind.
"Yeah. I know. And whatever you're gonna do, I'll have your back."
I stepped forward and wrapped him into a hug. He sighed into my shoulder.
Little brother.
I don't know why, but those two words have never felt this wonderful up until now.
"I love you." My voice was low and brittle.
"I love you, too, Fi."
Warm, peaceful silence. Casimir's heated cheek pressing against mine as snowflakes started raining from the steel-gray sky outside, the wind gluing them to the windowpanes. And then, all of a sudden, a choked sob.
"Fiona, I need to tell you something."
It came out as a shaky plea whispered against the side of my head. Cas didn't untangle himself from our embrace.
"Alright," I answered, holding him a little tighter.
"I-I can't. I don't…" He faltered and trailed off. "I need you to know but it feels too strange to say."
"Is it a big thing?"
"Yes."
"Do you maybe wanna tell me bit by bit?"
"Okay. Yeah, uh, that might work." He straightened up, raising his head. "You know how I said I took time off to come here? That wasn't entirely true. I quit."
"You quit?" I repeated, perplexed but making an effort to keep my tone steady and gentle. I didn't want to pry too much. Cas nodded, and I narrowed my eyes at him. "I thought you loved your job."
"I did. But that's not how I want to spend my time anymore." He squared his shoulders. "That's all I wanna say at the moment. I don't wanna be weird or rude or whatever, I just… need to get my head straight. It's really nice to be here with you, though—I want you to know that."
Ominous. I still forced a smile. "That's fine. And you can stay for however long you like." I meant it. The money wasn't a problem. Actually, something occurred to me—with the property obscured from the eyes of outsiders, perhaps I could let some of the workers go in the near future. It'd be sad and probably cause me some more headaches down the line, but that way, I could easily afford to entertain multiple people at the estate with a little more financial security and peace of mind. Then again, that would mean I'd have to uphold my dealings with Nick… not the most pleasant prospect. Whatever the case, I would do anything to keep my brother around.
"Thanks for having me. There's no place I'd rather be." He cleared his throat. "The guards made it through the earthquake okay, by the way. It was a shock, obviously, but nobody's hurt."
I nodded slowly. "I'll send them home for the next couple days. Shit is gonna go down hard soon and I don't want to have them around for it. We don't really need any help right now, and keeping them around would only be putting them into unnecessary danger."
"Okay. Yeah, that's sensible, I guess."
I went about making the necessary calls, seeing each of the employees out as they passed by the house on their way off the property. Most of them didn't really question my unexplained decision. Gus was the only one who showed definitive concern. He tried to ask me if something was wrong, but I blew him off as gently as I could. I did think he deserved an explanation, but it was for the best. He gave in eventually and left, but not before throwing a glance back at me with that trusting yet reproachful look that kind of reminded me of an old, grumpy dog.
"So what now?" Cas asked as I shut the door behind the senior employee.
"I guess we wait."
First, I went upstairs. My father coming back was definitely a grave occasion, so I figured I'd have to look the part the next couple days. I can't say why exactly I cared—Lord knows I don't have any regard for the man. But I did want him to see me as a serious head of the house, someone who knows what she's doing. So I ended up picking the simplest and least flashy dress I owned; the kind of thing I normally only wear on dates.
Yup, I've done dates like this. I go out with normal people! It's not like I'm a total freak. Most folks were pretty taken aback by the whole wedding gown-thing, but not enough not to look past it for at least a little while.
Casimir and I spent the rest of the day watching movies. That was actually pretty nice, and while I couldn't dispel the thoughts of emotionally distant fathers and intrusive Devils showing up around the house, I rather enjoyed myself. It helped that the sweaters Cas had taken to wearing around the house are incredibly soft, so I could rest my head on him like a pillow. The evening brought more snow and calming reprieve. It felt weird looking out at the treeline and knowing that for the first time in ages, there wasn't a single human back there. I couldn't help but wonder how many corpses would show up once it would begin to thaw. For now, they'd lie in silence, slowly getting covered up in layers and layers of white. The thought made me shiver, despite striking me as oddly poetic.
Two mornings later, our doorbell rang.
It was so weird that the man whose arrival I had been dreading so much would simply come up to the house and ring the doorbell. I would have expected him to make an entrance like the ones Nick had been treating me to. Of course I'd known that wasn't actually going to happen, but it still made me feel sort of underwhelmed.
I sat down at the head of the kitchen table, back straight, hands in my lap. "Do I look serious?" I asked Cas, nervously fiddling with the lace sleeve of my dress.
"Sure. Just stop shaking and you're good to go. Should I open?"
"Please do," I said softly.
Cas nodded grimly, wiping his sweat-laced palms on his pants. "R-right," he breathed, looking this way and that before turning on his heel and heading for the door. I heard him pulling it open and exchanging awkward words of greeting with a rugged-voiced man.
I tried to focus on my breathing to soothe my nerves.
In. Out. In. Out.
Heavy footsteps in the hallway.
In. Out. In. Out.
I clenched my fingers into fists to stop them from trembling. Why was I afraid of him?
In. Out. In. Out.
Floorboards creaking under his weight.
In. Out. In. Out.
My brother's voice, introducing us like we didn't know each other. "So, Dad… remember your eldest? You guys haven't spoken in how long again?"
No response.
In. Out. In. Out.
I turned to face him.
My father had changed since I'd last seen him. His large, once handsome face had gained an abundance of wrinkles and two extra chins. His pale green eyes were bloodshot with deep bags beneath them and his reddened face told a story of someone who'd been to the bottoms of far too many bottles. How strange, for a man of his faith.
It had been a long time since I'd last attempted to focus on somebody's aura, but this time, I did. Mostly, it just made me feel weird. My father's energy bore a slight trace of the supernatural, though not in the way I was used to seeing. He must have been dabbling with witchcraft, though it was hard to tell what kind.
"Maxwell. Please take a seat," I said coldly, gesturing at the chair across from me.
The response was a mere grunt as he moved over, slowly letting himself sink into the cushion. We locked eyes. There was no love in his gaze, not even a hint of affection. No surprises there.
"Good to see you, girl," he said tonelessly.
I let out a bitter laugh. "Of course. So, Daddy, you've been busy. Care to tell me what the fuck your game is?"
"Nothing you could understand."
"Then why are you here, if not to explain yourself?"
"I've come to end this."
"Well, go right ahead. I'd very much like for you to cease your attempts at undermining me, wholly unsuccessful though they've been so far."
Maxwell leaned forward on his elbows. "Will you hear me out, then?"
"I certainly will. And I have a ton of questions."
Dad shrugged. "Might actually be easier that way. Go ahead."
I swallowed thickly. "Why do you look fifteen minutes away from dying?"
"I have high blood pressure, digestive problems and my heart seems to be in some kind of trouble as well. As you may have guessed from my looks, that all happened due to severe use of alcohol. I'm past saving at this point; I know I'll be drinking myself to death. Sooner rather than later, I believe."
"Oh." That was the only sound I could produce as I regarded my father with raised brows. The clarity with which he spoke was nothing short of determined. "Wh… how? Why are you doing that to yourself?"
Maxwell shrugged. "That's just how it is. It's been going on for a long time now. I'm well aware I won't be there to see the good that my work will do, and I know that I, too, live sinfully, but I know that it will be worth it."
"What will be worth it?"
"There's a power struggle going on at the moment. Chaos and order. They're at an imbalance, for reasons greater than your comprehension. And whether you like it or not, you happen to be a part of it. Your woods, to be exact."
"Ah. You're about to go on about that whole unclaimed territory-thing, aren't you? I've heard it before." I stapled my fingers, tilting my head at him. "Your adversary's filled me in."
"So it's true. Don't get me wrong, I knew you had dealings with the Devil, but it's something else to hear you say it." He exhaled, leaning back in his chair. "I'm not even all that surprised. My daughter, hell's whore."
"What did you just call her?" Cas growled, his voice deeper and angrier than I'd ever heard before. He was still standing beside the table, almost as if he expected the situation to escalate at any second and didn't trust the momentary calm enough to sit down.
"I will not have you speak to me like that under my roof," I said sternly. "You've got no authority here anymore. You're a guest, at best, and not even a beloved one. If you want to leave here in one piece, you should watch your mouth."
"Don't you get it? I don't care what you're gonna do to me. It doesn't matter. I have literally nothing to lose."
"I'll make you eat those words," I promised somberly.
Dad merely chuckled. He was definitely not the easiest person to intimidate. "You're just like your mom, you know that? A self-serving, stupid little cu—"
Before he could finish that sentence, Cas had slapped his square across the face. Our father let out a low groan as he slowly reached up to rub his jaw. "You've got a… a strong right arm there, son," he muttered, seemingly making an effort to sound relaxed.
"So do you want it, too? The sleeping entity?" I asked impatiently.
"You really are well informed. Yes, I do. So, do you happen to know where to find it?"
"Yup. Not gonna tell you, though. I guess I could, but you aren't making a sound argument by calling me names."
"You're saying you'd refuse to give up such important information purely out of spite?"
"Yeah, pretty much. But I also really don't think this is a good decision. There has always been a balance between chaos and order, why rock the boat now?"
My father let out a long-suffering sigh. "Because the situation is more volatile than it used to be."
"Since you're not going to explain yourself further, I stand by what I said. I have a responsibility towards the woodland denizens. Removing the sleeper from these grounds could be dangerous. I don't think an entity that powerful will take lightly to being roused. I happen to have made it stir in its sleep not too long ago, and it ended up being a mild natural catastrophe. I don't want to imagine what it could do if it lashed out. Especially since a trusted source has told me that it is, in fact, probably highly intelligent. It's made people go insane in the past. It can appear anywhere, anytime, if it so pleases. This thing waking up and wreaking havoc… that's not something I wanna risk." I straightened my back, fixing my father with a resolute gaze. "I'll protect my land at all costs."
Maxwell scoffed. "You and your land, it's always the fucking land… Why would you even care about this place? I never understood that. It was like that when you were a kid, too. One moment you were chewing my ear off about wanting to go and be a movie star, or make a career in fashion, and the next you'd go spouting all that same nonsense your mother did when I first met her! Old family duties and all that crap… Fiona, the world is not a big fucking forest anymore! These creatures who live here might seem powerful to you, but they're some of the last of their kind—and good riddance, too. The world belongs to us now."
"Not this part of the world," I said, not missing a beat. I flinched when the large man brought his hand down on the table with a slam.
"I knew it! I fucking knew you'd be that way! That's why I pulled all this off. I figured, maybe, with a couple good blows to your little system, you'd realize how vulnerable you are, but no, my daughter is as hard-headed as she is slutty."
"Why the fuck are you talking to her like this?" Cas barked, fire in his eyes.
"Why aren't you?" Dad shot back. "All this woman has ever done is hog your mother's attention, making her forget about the rest of us by crawling up her ass!"
"I didn't crawl up— What the hell are you even on about?" I snapped.
"You did! You know why your mother liked you best? You know why you were her little princess? She wanted you to live the life she'd planned for herself, before—"
"Before you got in the way," I interrupted him, voice low with sudden understanding.
My father rose from his chair. "I tried… I tried to change her. Do you think I was happy, having to live here? Taking on her last name? That's not how it was supposed to be… When I met her, I thought she needed a firm hand, you know, just to guide her to the right path. And she seemed open to it. And then she got pregnant with you, and we got married, and I had to come live in this den of freaks, and she… she…"
"She regretted it," I finished his sentence for him.
My father let out a sharp scream as he hurled himself across the table, the wood screaming in protest, but he didn't quite reach me. For a moment, he flopped around helplessly, trying to grab me as I jumped up and scurried away from him.
"What are you doing?" Casimir yelled, gripping the back of the older man's shirt and forcibly dragging him to the floor in a display of surprising strength. I'd forgotten how fit my little brother actually was. He was still rather clumsy when it came to hand-to-hand, though, and it showed when my father pulled him down with him and struck him square across the face. I instantly lunged forward, flinging myself on top of my father as well, but he pushed me right off, sending me rolling aside. My head connected with the floorboards with a dull pain, and it took me some effort to push myself back up, my vision blurry.
I screamed in horror when I saw that Dad had climbed on top of Casimir and was viciously slamming his upper body down onto the floor, meaty hands clutching his shoulders. Cas fell limp before I could reach him. Maxwell slowly rose to his feet, breathing heavily as he removed the handgun from my brother's waistband. "That boy… shoulda shot me when he had the chance," he pressed out, breathing heavily.
I choked out a sob as my eyes darted between Cas and him. I didn't have time to form any clear thoughts. I just kept repeating the word no in my head over and over again, like a mantra. Dad raised the gun, proceeding towards me as he faced me with an icy calm. His mouth lifted into a cruel smile, his swollen lips reminding me of twin caterpillars. "Tell me where it is, Fiona."
"You're insane."
How was this man my Dad? How in the world was he pointing a weapon at me?
This was not how this was going to end. Throwing one last look at my unconscious brother, I sent a prayer to… I didn't even know who. I didn't care. Let him be okay. For fuck's sake, let him be okay, or I'll turn the world upside down. Then, I took off running.
My only chance. My father wouldn't shoot me dead; I'd be useless to him that way, but I wasn't going to give him the chance to incapacitate me. I sprinted towards the front door, tearing it open and bursting outside. The snow crunched beneath my boots as I raced across the frozen ground. The fabric of my dress stretched wider, groaning with every leap that I took, until the tight long skirt finally ripped along the side, leaving it fluttering around my legs in the wind. Aleksei. Please don't be far. If I could just reach him in time, he'd be able to help me. I turned my head to find my father following behind me. His face was bright red and he was already gasping for air. He might have been stronger than me, but goddamn, was he slow.
I was approaching the Twin Lakes rapidly, the abandoned black mill looming overhead like a specter. No time to slow down. I ran right onto the ice, only to instantly lose my footing and skitter across the frozen surface. My fall was humiliatingly unceremonious and extremely painful. I landed on my chest, the impact knocking the air out of my body, leaving me gasping for breath in desperation. My arms were shaking too much to push me back up, and I cursed my own stupidity as I realized I had literally no strength left within me.
That's when I heard a sharp yell.
My father had reached me, stumbling after me onto the ice. But he wasn't able to keep his balance any longer than I had. He howled in shock as he tripped and fell, the gun slipping from his fingers and sliding across the lake, coming to a halt out of our reach. I glanced at it for a second, then back at the struggling man before lunging for the weapon.
I would have liked to, at least.
As it was, all I could do in my state was to hastily crawl towards it. My father appeared to have been struck with the same idea—I heard him wheezing and choking as he crept up the slippery surface. I was just relieved that the layer of ice was thick enough to support our joint weight.
"You bitch," he gritted out. "You're gonna doom us all!"
I looked back at him, meeting a bloodshot gaze amidst a contorted expression. His mouth hung open, blood gushing from his nose and lower lip—he seemed to have fallen onto his face. He made for a dreadful sight. He somehow managed to draw himself up, staggering over to me and throwing his entire weight onto my already aching body. I let out a cry of agony, feeling a crack somewhere inside of me, though I couldn't tell where. I had been reduced to a squirming heap of pain. He rolled off of me again, then made for the gun, and this time, he got a hold of it. I flopped over onto my back, staring at the cold gray sky as my chest rose and fell unsteadily. Once more, I couldn't seem to take in enough air. I whimpered as my father pushed himself into my field of vision, the muzzle of the gun pointed at my head.
At that moment, he reminded me of Jeremy. Those same milky, crazed eyes that seemed to pierce my own with their glare; the way every crease in his face appeared to exude hatred…
"This is so fucked up," I whispered, desperately searching his features for some semblance of mercy.
"Where is it, Fiona?"
I couldn't seem to focus. "You're supposed to be my Dad… You stupid piece of shit…"
"Where is it?" He leveled the gun at my kneecap, bending down to touch its end to the exposed skin. "This is gonna hurt, you know."
"I know," I said softly, closing my eyes.
"So where is it?"
I stayed silent.
He sighed, I heard him cock the gun and then scream in shock.
My eyes flew open to see that he had let go of the gun which was now resting right beside my leg. He'd jumped to his feet and was furiously patting at his jacket sleeve as smoke rose from the fabric. Out of nowhere, it lit up into a large flame, searing his flesh and drawing howls of agony and raw, deadly fear from his throat. The horror of the sight had me paralyzed for just a moment, frozen to the spot before snapping out of it. I reached for the firearm, hurrying to put the safety back on as I stumbled away from my dad. His cries cut through the silence of the woods, each one shaking me to my very core as I watched on in complete bewilderment.
"You fucking witch! What did you do to me?" he bellowed, throwing himself onto the ground to try and smother the flames that were slowly but deliberately lapping away at his arm.
Afraid the ice was going to give in, I backed off onto dry land, still unable to tear my eyes off the writhing man. My heart was racing, my head reeling—I had no idea what was happening. And then, all of a sudden, I felt something I can only describe as a "disturbance in the force". A ripple of energy, or perhaps just an instinct compelled me to turn and look over at the black gristmill. There was a figure standing just outside of the old building. A short, broad one, dressed in all black, staring intently at my father.
I couldn't contain myself. Before I even knew what I was doing, a sharp cry of joy had left my lips, and I found myself stumbling over to the other person on wobbly legs. Every step hurt, straining muscles I didn't even know I had. I stopped a few feet ahead of the newcomer. The gun dropped from my trembling hands, sinking into the snow, and I followed shortly after. Before my upper body could hit the ground though, I felt strong arms wrap around me, holding me up.
This was like a fairy tale. Sure, I was bleeding and aching all over, and the tongue that moved to lick the warm tears of my face was rough and forked, but still. This was like a fucking fairy tale.
Jacek pulled back, tilting his head at me with a lopsided smile.
I mirrored the movement before everything turned black.
X
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
Part 9
Part 10
Part 11
Part 12
Part 13
Part 14
Part 15
Part 16
Part 17
Part 18
Part 19
Part 20
Part 21
Part 22
Part 23
submitted by girl_from_the_crypt to nosleep [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 00:54 ScienceMarc Bargaining Chip (1/?) [AU]

Author’s note: This is an AU fanfic where Sovlin’s ship finds itself at the wrong place at the wrong time and gets boarded by the Arxur a few months before the Odyssey makes first contact with the Venlil. Hope y’all enjoy.
Memory transcription subject: Doctor Zarn, Federation Medical Corps
Date [standardized human time]: May 7, 2136
The shrieking of the ship’s master alarm resonated all around the med-bay, but it didn’t matter. Nothing mattered anymore. Our ship’s drive and primary power systems had just been obliterated by a lucky shot from an Arxur battlegroup and now we were sitting adrift and alone. If the PA were to be believed, we should be expecting an Arxur boarding party to come to collect their catch any minute now.
It was all that imbecile Sovlin’s fault. We weren’t even supposed to be here, but that fool had plunged us deep into Arxur-controlled space in a supposed act of bravery. What everyone didn’t know was the dear captain had never actually gotten over the death of his family; I got semi frequent calls from his office whenever someone would wander in and discover him collapsed in a corner cradling a bottle and completely nonresponsive. No one with his level of grief should be in charge of anything, much less a ship full of people. But I suppose if losing family members to the Arxur disqualified you from service, the Federation would quickly find itself without a military. Still, maybe I should have tried to get Sovlin out of a command position before his suicidal decision making got all of us killed, I probably could have convinced a panel that his aggressive combat strategies were enough for a predator disease diagnosis.
Am I really spending my final moments thinking about Sovlin of all people? Any second the Arxur are going to come through the door and drag us all to the cattle pens and torture us. Maybe I should start euthanizing as many of the patients in the med-bay as possible, they won’t survive the pens.
Who am I kidding? I couldn’t move if I wanted to. Every muscle in my body was frozen stiff the moment the shrill sound of the alarm first sounded. The Arxur are going to kill me and there’s nothing I can do about it. I don’t even have the courage to rush for the airlock like the rest of my staff did. Everyone knew breathing vacuum was a preferable alternative to Arxur capture.
I’m a coward. I’ve always been a coward. I come from a family of cowards that chose to run instead of defending their home. Like them, I will do anything if it means drawing even a single extra breath.
Choking screams reverberated down the hall before suddenly stopping. Probably an Arxur beast sating its voracious appetite. Moments later I saw the lumbering forms of three Arxur calmly step through the door, front-facing eyes staring directly into my soul. It was at this moment I knew all of the religions of the Federation were a sham. No loving creator would allow for a world where such monsters of pure evil exist. Their dark pupils were like pools of endless sorrow and their jaw was little more than a home to the yellowed knives they called teeth.
The one that had stepped through the door first began stalking towards me. On instinct I started stumbling backwards, it was the only thing I could do to delay the painful death that awaited me. I had to think of something to convince them not to kill me right now. But what could a soulless predator possibly want other than to inflict pain and suffering on others?
“W-wait I-I… if you could just wait one m-moment, one s-single second! Please!” I begged. “You… you can’t kill me! I’m important! I…”
The predator kept its slow and even pace towards me, eyes locked with my throat, seemingly oblivious to what I was saying. Everyone knows the Arxur don’t converse with prey unless they mean to mock them. It was at this moment that I felt my back hit the cold hard wall. This is it. Without a miracle within the next few seconds, I was dead. I racked my brain for something… anything I could do or say that would postpone the inevitable. For some reason, my mind wandered to the most predatory knowledge I had: my bioethics thesis. Spending those grueling months poring over countless reports, recordings, and debates over humans was pure torture. All of this research was greatly complicated by the endless forms I had to send to the Farsul archivists entrusted with such disturbing information. Information on humans was heavily restricted and as a result most of the people who asked me about my thesis had absolutely no idea what I was talking about… in fact, given how esoteric knowledge on humans is, it is unlikely the Arxur have even the faintest idea they used to exist. I’m not exactly a great liar, but if I could spin a tale believable enough for these Arxur not to tear me to shreds right here, I might live to see tomorrow.
Whatever I was going to say, it was now or never, the gray stalking me had closed the distance between us and just entered a lunge. I shut my eyes and screamed “I KNOW ABOUT THE SECRET PREDATOR SPECIES!”.
I held my eyes shut for several more seconds, not daring to move or breathe. Eventually, my brain registered that the low animalistic growl I had heard right after I spoke was in fact speech that my translator implant had helpfully translated as “Stop”. I hesitantly opened my eyes to the sight of an Arxur soldier stopped a single step away from me, with its head turned to face away from me, locked in a predatory stare toward one of the Arxur that had lingered by the entrance to the med-bay. Its face showed signs of age, its scales a slightly different shade to the two other Arxur before me and a noticeable chip in one of its yellow teeth. I surmised that it must be in charge, or at least the other two grays in the room seemed to be paralyzed by its speech.
This elder Arxur focused its piercing eyes on me, opening its mouth and emitting a short series of growling noises. A moment later my translator chipped in to translate those sounds as “Prey, speak”.
What the fuck? Did that actually work?
“Uh… y-yeah… I k-know about the secret predators…” I stammered.
“You already said that. What ‘secret predator species’?” the old Arxur growled.
“The uh…. the secret species of predators we um… discovered during the w-war? We…. we kept them secret because they were uh… so… predatory?”
I don’t think I could sound less sure of myself if I tried. I’m honestly surprised I’ve even gotten this far. Come on Zarn, think of something that will keep its attention.
“W-we didn’t want them to ally with you!” I offered. Of course, the notion that a predator species actually cooperating with another species is laughable, but despite this, something changed in that old Arxur’s eyes. Was that interest or hunger?
“We don’t have time for this.” sighed the other Arxur that had remained near the entryway. The gray near me snapped his head back in my direction, staring into my very being, ready to strike at any moment. I was sure that it would make my death extra drawn-out and painful for wasting its time. But to my surprise the old Arxur chose to save my life for the second time.
“Indeed, now is not the time for this. You two can take him to an empty cattle pen, yes? I can interrogate the animal later. No surprises this time.”
I was far from an expert at reading Arxur body language, but there was no doubt in my mind that the expression of the gray in front of me was one of pure contempt and frustration. In different circumstances, the sight of an Arxur being denied its food would have made me giddy, but the thought of being trapped in the same pens that so many of my kind have been confined to for generations filled me with dread. Still, I wasn’t about to be the first in my family line to choose death at the hands of a predator over life, no matter how torturous. Now I just had to hope for the integrity of the Arxur chain of command; it was all that was stopping the gray before me from striking me down.
Luckily, when the gray reached for me, it was to grab me by the arm. Its sharp claws dug into hard enough to be painful, but fortunately the thickness of my hide kept it from drawing blood. The gray practically dragged me to the other Arxur that had been charged with my imprisonment. This Arxur held up a metal rod, shaking it a couple times to make sure I was looking at it, before squeezing its grip, depressing a switch that caused the pointed tip to rapidly begin glowing red hot. The sight of a predator holding a device who’s only purpose seemed to be to inflict pain and misery on its recipient filled me with a feeling of terror I don’t think I’ve ever experienced before, even though the Arxur holding it was a little shorter than its comrades, nothing could diminish the imposing image before me.
“If I have to use it, you’ll remember.” warned the Arxur. “If you’re good, you’ll only have to feel it when it’s time for your brand.”
I have no idea what that means, but the thought of hot iron searing into my hide makes me want to scream.
The gray that had grabbed me by the arm gave me a rough shove, which I interpreted as an order to walk. Satisfied with the obedience of its subordinates, the older Arxur exited through the door it had come through and continued stalking through the ship. I followed shortly after, and my guards followed close behind, keeping me moving forward. Looking down the corridor, I found the source of the scream I had heard earlier. The mutilated, but unmistakable body of Captain Sovlin lay motionless on the floor. Despite my thoughts about him, seeing his half-eaten corpse was a punch in the gut.
It might be his fault we’re in this situation, but no person deserves to be carved up by a savage predator.
After seeing Sovlin, I became dazed, stumbling through the winding corridors of the once familiar ship on my captors’ commands. The only thing that brought me back to the present was a sudden outburst from the gray that had grabbed me earlier.
“I can’t believe that old fuck has us going all the way back on board just to secure a lying, cowardly Takkan! I’ve never met such a stupid and gullible Arxur before.”
“You don’t become Chief Hunter by being stupid or gullible. He’s killed more prey than both of us combined by at least a couple orders of magnitude. It’d do you some good to learn to respect your elders.” chided the Arxur with the hot prod.
“Of course, you’re a suck-up. You know, this is exactly why women shouldn’t be in the military- you’re too submissive and feeble-minded to seize the initiative and do what needs to be done.”
“You’re one to talk. You can’t last five fucking minutes without screwing something up. You just had to take a bite out of that captain only to act so surprised when the Chief explained to you it had already bled out too much to be of any use. I’ve been in this war from the day I was grown enough to hold a rifle and be thrown onto the front; meanwhile you’ve bounced between cushy cattle ship posts and easy farm work, all because your grandma shacked up with a Prophet-Descendant. If anyone doesn’t deserve to be here, it’s you.”
What did you just say to me you bit-
“Shut up. Your babbling is getting on my nerves. We’re almost to the pens, so if you can keep your mouth shut until after we drop the animal off, I might make it through this shift without breaking your nose.”
The female Arxur was right. We had already crossed the threshold from my ship to theirs. Grays wandered the corridors, prodding their new cattle along. In one corner, I could see a screaming Gojid being held down by several Arxur, with one gray tracing out a pattern on her neck using the same rod that I had been shown earlier. The nauseating smell of charred flesh filled my nostrils and caused me to double over and vomit onto the ground, eliciting a cruel chuckle from my captors, or at least that’s what my translator was insisting the gravelly noise they were making was.
Fortunately, I didn’t have to be subjected to the grotesque display of cattle processing for much longer, as we arrived at a metal door, identical to the ones that led to the pens I saw my other crewmates being shepherded into. My male captor waved a paw in front of a motion sensor and the door creaked open to reveal a cramped room bisected by a mesh fence with a locking gate providing entry. The female barged in past me, opening the metal gate, and pointing expectantly with the skin-burning rod it carried. Knowing the consequences of disobedience, I entered my cage.
I might never know a world outside these walls again… Stars, I might never see a non-predator again…
“Your leaves come down from up there, and you can get water from the trough in the corner” the female explained, pointing to a chute in the ceiling.
“Stop talking to the food, let’s go already! This stupid shit has wasted enough of my time as is.” barked the male. With an audible sigh, the female locked the gate shut, confining me to my pen, and joined its partner before sealing the metal door that led to the corridor with the startling sound of interlocks creating an airtight seal with the rest of the ship, likely to limit cattle losses if the ship were to take damage during an engagement.
I was left completely alone in a pen that would likely normally hold dozens of cattle. The walls were mostly featureless, and the florescent lights above emitted an oppressive glow. The only comforts in my cage were the food chute, water trough, and a grate in the floor I assume I am expected to defecate into. Cattle pens were widely regarded as one of the worst places to find yourself in, only slightly better than between an Arxur’s teeth.
At least now that I’m alone I can start working on the story that will keep me alive for the foreseeable future. I have to give the old Arxur something when it returns to “interrogate” me that will make me seem more valuable alive than as meat. Honestly, when I woke up this morning, I didn’t truly believe that there was any combination of words that could convince an Arxur to spare you, even for a moment. It seemed that, for some reason, the promise of allies like the humans could override an Arxur’s bloodlust for a short time. I guess even the grays realize they could kill us so much easier if they had another friendly species to do their dirty work. It’s a good thing that the humans blew themselves up decades ago, an ally as brutal and heartless as them would make the war as good as lost. I just have to figure out how to take elements from my research into them for my thesis and phrase them in a way even a gray could understand, without revealing so much they realize I’m lying to them.
This bargaining chip was the only thing that was keeping me alive.
[Next]
submitted by ScienceMarc to NatureofPredators [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 00:16 Maia_Vry Contraband

She knew she didn’t belong here, and she read every passing glance as suspicion. In an establishment that catered to every vice she’d long sworn off, it was impossible for Maia to blend in.
But she did try. There was a strong drink in her hand, kept only as a prop. Not a single sip had been taken, and all the ice had melted. Discerning eyes would notice, and Maia was fortunate that every eye around her was half-impaired.
Nothing she had to wear could suggest the beginning of a long night, but she could at least imitate the end of a long day. A discarded set of drab overalls adorned her figure, accentuated by the sweat running down her skin. This part of Bralast was especially humid. She knew how to suffer its air with grace, and that - she hoped - would be enough for her to pass as an ordinary farmer.
It was instead her stare that gave her away. From her shady little corner of the cantina, she kept watch over a small crowd of ruffians. She was looking for a tall, brawny man with a shaved head and scars. Unfortunately, half of them fit the description.
She glanced down at the crate beside her feet. Were it not for the overpowering ambience of music and conversation, she would have never dared to sneak it in here. Her eyes locked on to the strangers when her gaze returned, in the hope that her conspicuous stare would eventually be noticed.
It worked, though from the laughter that erupted she could only imagine that her intentions were misread. She did not care to hear the words they muttered among themselves - and neither did the man she was looking for. There was an apologetic look on his face as he parted from his companions and made his way across the floor.
His eyes gave a hesitant scan as he loomed at the opposite of a small, high table. “...You must be Maia.”
“I am.”
He squinted; a sliver of doubt still lingered in his mind. “You don’t look much like a courier.”
“I’m not.” Maia reached down to lift up the crate by its handle. “But I was offered a very generous sum to deliver this to you.” She placed it at the center of the table.
“Probably less than you could have asked for. This is worth a fortune around these parts.” He tapped a finger atop the lid. “Might I have a look, first?”
Maia gave the surrounding cantina a cautious scan. “I don’t think it’s allowed in here.”
The bald man laughed. “Neither’s your sidearm, but that’s not stopping you.”
“I don’t have a sidearm.”
“Then what’s that?” He pointed to a long, cylindrical shape filling out a pocket at her hip.
“...my main arm,” she admitted with a sigh.
“Really? Around these parts, you ought to carry a bigger blaster.”
“It’s not a blaster.”
Eyes widened as the realization came to him. “...ah-hah! I’ve heard about your type, but I’ve never had a chance to meet one in the flesh. You know, I--”
Maia knew it would be a bad idea to indulge his curiosity any further. She shut him up by pressing a switch at the top of the crate, prompting its lid to slide open.
The man’s grin grew as he turned down his gaze to peek at the contents within. “My, oh my, he’s adorable.”
She,” Maia corrected. She dipped in her hand and pulled it up by the fur over its neck. Big dark eyes, pointy ears, and a fluffy white coat. The pup was perfectly ordinary - and at the edge of the galaxy, banality rendered it exotic.
She’s adorable.” The man could barely suppress his boyish excitement. He took the pup from her hand and nuzzled it up against his stubbled jaw. It lathered his face with licks. “You have no idea how long I’ve been wanting one of these.”
“Then I trust you’ll take good care of her.”
“Of course,” he promised. “Must have been a lot of trouble to get her to this system in the first place.”
“I can only imagine.” If only she couldn’t. Somewhere up the line, an illicit deal must have been made to bring the pup to Region Twelve. She was grateful that she hadn’t been hired to deliver something harmful instead.
“...well,” the man spoke, after a brief, awkward silence. “Maybe I can fetch you another drink as a token of my gratitude?”
Maia shook her head as she glanced at the concoction in her hand, still untouched by her lips. “I’m quite fine here - unless I can ask a favor of you.”
“Shoot.”
“You’ve got a speeder, don’t you? I need a ride to the spaceport.”
He took a moment to consider her request, first with a glance to his friends in the distance, and then to the weapon covered at Maia’s hip. “A favor for a favor,” he proposed. “I’d love to see a demonstration of your - y’know.”
“I’d rather not.”
“But you would like to get off Bralast.”
Maia let out a heavy sigh. “Fine. But not here - we’ll stop along the side of the road.”
“We got us a deal, then. Give me a moment and I’ll meet you outside.”
She briefly stayed back and watched as he excitedly returned to his friends, all of whom shared in his enthusiasm for the pup. It came as no surprise when the bartender scolded him for bringing a pet into the cantina.
The promised landspeeder proved to be little more than a swoop bike with a sidecar attached. Maia rode at the mercy of her acquaintance’s reckless driving, one hand holding the pup in her lap while the other shielded her eyes from the air blowing against her face. She might have bid him to slow down if not for the complete lack of traffic on the path he traced.
After passing through a dense patch of jungle, the speeder veered off into a flat field. The passenger and the pilot both stood, the latter scooping up his new pet into one arm.
Maia pulled the hilt of her saber out from her pocket as she began pacing backwards. “Grab your blaster,” she instructed, “and point it at me.”
“I--really?” The man was at first taken aback, but an affirmative nod was all the encouragement he needed. His free hand procured a heavy pistol from his hip and aimed it forward.
After creating enough distance, Maia pressed a switch and protracted a radiant blue blade. The novelty brought a grin to the gunman’s face.
“Fire,” Maia commanded, and the bolt was unleashed. With the slightest flick of the wrist, she deflected it straight up into the sky.
“No way!” the man exclaimed. “How did you do that?”
“Intuition,” she answered. “If you don’t believe your eyes, you’re welcome to try again.”
He did - three times. Each blast was deflected in precisely the same trajectory as before, sending the bolts up in an almost perfectly vertical arc.
“I think that’s enough.” The blade was retracted, and the hilt returned to her waist. But just as Maia started back toward the speeder, the man fired yet another shot in her direction. She reacted swiftly, drawing her saber once more to swat the bolt away in the blink of an eye.
“Hey!” she scolded. “I didn’t tell you to shoot.”
“Sorry. Just wanted to make sure you were for real.”
submitted by Maia_Vry to Starwarsrp [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 00:08 Ok-Marionberry-9708 My Missing Mother Paid Me a Visit in 1996. I've Never Told Anyone.

When I was seventeen my mother vanished without a trace, during the summer of 1996 in Cedar Hill, Missouri.
I've never told anyone what I experienced three weeks after her disappearance. The news stories showed bits and pieces, but I've never so much as uttered what I'm about to tell you to reporters, the police, or any of the countless doctors I've seen over the years.
I'm not exactly what you'd call a "model citizen," and my lucidity has been brought into question more than once throughout my life. I don't expect my recounting to "set the world on fire" as they say. Nobody believes an aging addict with a violent criminal record and various diagnoses.
Even still, it's time.
She had me when she was nineteen, so when my mom disappeared, she was only thirty-six. It's an odd feeling -- outliving a young parent. As I'm sitting here now, I'm older than she was at the time of her disappearance by seven years.
She and my father never married and split up not long after I was born, but they remained close friends. She was a hairdresser in Saint Louis, and the town of Cedar Hill -- where my father lived -- was about forty minutes outside of the city limits. the distance wasn't anything crazy for joint-custody parents by any stretch of the imagination, but my mom; Lori as everyone called her, wanted to get away from the bustle and the crime of the city anyways, so we ultimately moved there, just a few miles away from my dad.
It didn't take long after we moved in for people to take to her. She was that way, my mom. Everyone seemed to just light up when they saw her, and she'd reciprocate with the most genuine warmth you could ever find in a person. It was infectious.
I still wish to this day that I'd inherited, or at least learned to emulate that part of her -- one of the many things that I've come to miss so dearly.
She'd met a man named Jack and got engaged to him after only six months of dating him. Jack hated me from the start. I had poor grades and would fight in school and all of that. I'll admit that I was no prom king even then, but it was more than that with Jack.
I could have been captain of the varsity football team with straight A’s, and he'd have still hated me. It turned out Jack had a penchant for jealousy and was known for it by people he'd grown up with within the town over the years. It seems even he was even capable of being jealous of a mother’s love for her own son.
I'd hear some of the other women gossip about it at my mom's salon when she'd step outside to smoke, and they didn't know I was in the back. That and his... odd religious beliefs.
People didn't seem to know what a nice, pretty woman like her was doing with someone that held such a tepid reputation from the community, but my mom seemed to always go for the oddballs.
She always was a spiritual, but religiously promiscuous person; her parents and sister died in a car crash when I was just a baby, and she took it hard. As far back as I could remember she would sometimes cry about it when she'd have one-too-many glasses of wine, or when she thought she was alone. She'd always go to random different churches of various denominations, but I really think she was just desperate to find something that made her feel some sort of comfort about her loss.
About three days before her disappearance, I'd heard her and Jack fighting in the living room. My room in that house was in the basement so was muffled, but it was something about some kind of church meeting. I think it was something about them breaking some rule or something, but I couldn't be sure.
I've tried and tried to dig into my memory and make the words clearer as to what was said, to the point of mental anguish, but they never do. They fought a lot during that time, so I just tended to tune the arguments out. Ultimately, the police never connected it to anything of importance in the case.
She seemed troubled the next two days after that. She and Jack seemed to be getting along just fine on the surface, but I couldn't help but notice her agitation -- even as 'in my own head' as I was at that age. I could tell she hadn't been sleeping and was chain-smoking her Marlboro Menthols -- something she normally only did as an "after work" ritual in our garage.
She kept looking out of the windows like someone could have been coming to visit at any moment, but they never did.
The morning she disappeared, she said something to me at breakfast before she went to work at her Salon --- the last place anyone in the public would ever see her alive again. She looked terrible and I could tell she still hadn't slept the night before, yet again. Jack had to deliver a load to Kansas City with his rig that day, so he had left early in the morning.
As she was washing our plates in the sink, she asked me, "Are you happy here, Kyle?" I didn't know what to say to her at the time, so I said nothing. I hated that town and I hated Jack, and she knew that. I told her to leave him countless times.
She said, " Today your grandma told me she'd love for us to come stay with her and your grandpa back in Chesterfield." Her voice was breaking up and I could see her shudder a little at the sink. She was crying.
I reminded her that I never met Grandma and Grandpa and that they'd been dead since before I was born. I asked her if she was okay, and she said she was and that she was just tired.
Afterward, I stood up to go to a friend's house, the last thing she said to me as I was heading out the door was, "After all these years I finally found a way through, Kyle. I have something to show you later. I love you, son."
It wasn't the first time she'd gotten wrapped up headfirst into some obscure religion looking for answers, so I just told her I loved her too and left.
And that was what I told the police was the last time I saw her alive.
I lied when I told them that.
Within a 15-minute window, in between clients at her salon, between 11:15- 11:30 AM, she was just gone. No trace whatsoever. Her lunch was still sitting in the microwave when the police arrived to search for any sign of fleeing or kidnapping, anything at all that would give them an indication of where she might have gone. They never found any evidence of distress or any sort of planned runaway, other than what I'd told her she'd said that morning.
My first thought, one that was shared with her close friends, was that Jack was behind it, but his alibi was rock solid. He also apparently seemed genuinely distraught and concerned for her well-being when the police questioned him, and he was ultimately dismissed as a person of interest.
The bastard changed the locks to our house on me the very next day. He wouldn't even let me into it to get the rest of my stuff, so I went to stay with my father on his farm just a few miles away.
As days, then weeks went by, we began to lose hope. A serial killer and rapist that went by the name of Walter Kyper was discovered to have been passing through the area right around that time, and the news and police seemed to be heavily leaning towards him as the cause.
I couldn't shake those last words she'd said to me though...
" Today your grandma told me she'd love for us to come stay with her and your grandpa back in Chesterfield." Had she had some sort of mental break? and what about the part about "finding a way through" after all these years? It was just too odd; too unlike her.
Exactly three weeks after she'd vanished from the little salon she'd loved so much, I was sitting in my room at my father's farmhouse and heard a faint bristling in the yard from outside my window. I didn't think much of it as my dad's dog, Thunder, slept in a doghouse near the window. He always barked at strangers, so I figured it was just him.
But it wasn't long after, that the bristling turned to creaking and clambering on the side of the house, up past the gutters, and sounded like it was on the roof.
It sounded heavy, much too heavy to be a raccoon or an opossum. It couldn't Thunder either, unless he decided to grow opposable thumbs. "Could it be a bear or some kind? A black bear, maybe" I asked myself. Black bears weren't common in that part of Missouri, but not unheard of.
I was just about to get out of bed and let my dad know that we need to get our guns and go shoot whatever it was on the house when I heard something that chilled me down to the core of my soul... and froze me right where I lay.
It was the crying of a woman, followed by the creaking open of the window that led to the attic. I wish I could say that I was brave at that moment, but I wasn't. I just sat there in my bed, petrified; quiet as a mouse, unable to move so much as a muscle. The crying was muffled now that it was coming from the attic, but you could still barely hear it.
My father had taken my mom's disappearance particularly hard, and he was usually drunk and asleep not long after the sun went down, but I'd still hoped he'd heard something, and that maybe he had more courage than I was able to muster at the time, but never came. For what must have been several minutes I could hear the creaking of the boards in the attic above me... still, that sobbing she paced back and forth.
There was a shotgun in the hallway closet about thirty feet away, and if I was careful about crawling out of bed, I could get to it long before whoever she was could come down the attack stairs and open the door that was right outside of my room.
I was slowly removing the covers from my body, and she must've slipped and fell through this open cavity that was in between the walls because I heard her tumble down and crash right from the outer part of my closet. The house was old and there were lots of little places to fall through from the attic. I'd lose toys and baseball gloves and all kinds of things down in that little space, never to be recovered.
From the sound, even in my excited state, I knew that for someone to fall there that hard, they must've broken several bones and would probably die in there before too long.
But the sobbing resumed shortly after she came plummeting down into there. My closet door had been left ajar, and I could see the faint outline of a new hole in the plaster, where her foot must've kicked out during her sudden and unexpected descent.
The sobbing stopped, and then the head of my mother pushed its way through, the plaster in my closet. It was very dark, but I could still recognize the shape of her face. She looked badly emaciated, and her eyes didn't look right. They looked... almost lambent like a cat's or an animal's eyes in the darkness. She was just staring at me with her head jutting through the hole. She gave me a face that was filled with deep commiseration like she was sorry she'd let me feel so much worry and despair over those past three weeks.
As wrong and awful as it was, seeing my mom's face after I was almost certain that I'd never see her again... well, it's hard to fully describe how that feels, I wasn't thinking straight.
I began crying and just mindlessly asked, "Mom?" I had no idea what to say or how to process anything that I was experiencing.
She just started sobbing again, in that same way she had been the day she'd vanished. "I finally found a way through, baby," she said. Her eyes glinted like opals in the shadow.
I asked her where she'd been and told her that everyone had been looking for her for weeks. She just told me to come closer and that she had to "show me something."
"I said I had something to show you, remember?" she said. And then she repeated herself a second time with an identical tone, almost like she was rewound.
And then she repeated it again, and again.
On and on, until I couldn't take it anymore. I cried out to her to stop and told her she was scaring me. She stared at me with her mouth open, a silver ribbon of drool leaked out of it, and then she pulled her head out of the hole she'd made in the closet wall. I heard shimmying up to the attic from where she'd fallen, and then I could hear her crawl out of the window and jump off the roof, running into the woods.
I sat there for a while, I'm not sure how long, just trying to process what I saw. I eventually gathered myself and grabbed the shotgun, shook my dad awake, and told him that there had been an intruder, but I never told him who I'd seen sticking their head out through the hole in my closet -- out from the cavity wall. We called the police, and they did their best to connect it to my mother's disappearance, but in the end, attributed it to an indiscriminate attempted robbery.
Months went by without her ever turning up, alive or dead, and then a year. I signed up for the Army the day I turned eighteen, and my father killed himself while I was still in Bootcamp.
He'd called me, at what was determined to be just moments before he put the barrel of his shotgun in his mouth and pulled the trigger. He told me, "I love you, son. Thank God you didn't see what she's shown me. Forgive me."
In 1999, her remains were found not five hundred yards into the woods, behind the house where she grew up with her parents and sister. She was nothing more than a skull and a handful of scattered bones.
I had been dishonorably discharged from the Army by then and was serving the first of a five-year prison sentence --- the first of two stents of a hard time I'd end up serving, and so Jack had what little was left of my mother's remains cremated, and still has them to this day.
I've just been released from the second sentence.
I've been staying at the motel near Jack's place for a few nights now. I've broken my parole, so there's no going back at this point. See, my mom's friends had said over the years that she was planning to leave Jack; something I wasn't even aware of at the time. I wonder if he knew that.
Even more, I wonder what he'd have done if he found that out...
Possessive, jealous Jack. Unable to even allow her to share her love even with her only son.
I've done a lot of research on that cult of his, and I wonder what he might've subjected her to he'd found out she would leave him. A spiritually desperate woman, willing to do anything to speak with her dead family again...
We'll find out tomorrow night when I pay him a visit.
submitted by Ok-Marionberry-9708 to nosleep [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 23:44 BrazenBard [LFA] Varit of Numeria. Half-Elf Kellid born Thaumaturge

[LFA] Varit of Numeria. Half-Elf Kellid born Thaumaturge submitted by BrazenBard to characterdrawing [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 23:27 jack_daniels98 [M4A playing F] A Top Gun Maverick Fandom RP

It was a hot summer day when Lt. Matt “Primetime” Fairbanks reached the hangar garage. He took of his sun glasses and looked at all fighting planes. He was finally there. His biggest dream came true. Meeting the best pilots of the US Navy and competing with them for a place at the famous Top Gun wall of honor. Growing up in Texas can be pretty boring. So Matt either spend his time with his friends, talking about the latest Cowboys game and the epic performances of Roger Staubach and Emmitt Smith, or he was at his grandparents house. His grandfather, Peter Fairbanks has been a navy pilot too. He served during the Vietnam war and had lots of stories which Matt as keen on hearing. Even though Matt’s mother wasn’t really like the thought of her son following her farther’s footsteps, Matt decided that he wanted to become a navy pilot too. So after graduating as the best of his class in Annapolis, Matt quickly emerged as one of the best of the best. Having great reflexes and being as cold as ice in the air, Matt got selected to participate in the famous Top Gun program. After hearing the welcome speach in the hangar, Matt’s eyes drifted around the other pilots of the program. He could tell that some of them had a very big ego. Of course they were great pilots, but Matt was sure that their pride was the key to beat them. And then there was Lt. Natasha “Phoenix” Trace. Matt had already heard about her. She was a tough girl who could stand their ground to everyone. And she was definitely cute as hell…
Hello! Thanks for reading the introduction to my post. I recently watched Top Gun Maverick and absolutely enjoyed the movie. And it provides some interesting stuff to build a great and interesting RP around. I was thinking about pairing Phoenix with my OC Matt “Primetime” Fairbanks. I want to explore the time as pilots in the Top Gun program. All their training sessions, briefings and free time in which they’re slowly falling for each other. While there will be some smut scene, I’d like to keep the ratio between the smut and the story fairly even, maybe with a bit more focus on the storyline. It’s important for me to have a good build up to the romance and smut scenes. The affection the characters are having for each other and the tension between the characters can be more interesting than the actual sex scene. Before we start with the actual writing I’d like to discuss the plot a bit with you. We don’t need to plan every detail before we start but a bit of planning is ideal to have a structure which we can follow.
If you’re interested in discussing details, the plot or something else I’m looking forward to hear from you! Oh and before I forgot. I’m more then happy to move the writing over to discord. But of course we can also stay here on Reddit if it’s your preferred chatting medium.
submitted by jack_daniels98 to RoleplayPartnerSearch [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 22:49 malo_maxima What are your favorite lens-safe eye drops?

When I insert my lenses I like to rinse off the Boston Simplus (any trace burns my eyes) with saline then insert a few eye drops into the lens before putting it on my eye. In the morning, I can’t even see out of my fogged up lenses that are so dry it’s hard to open my eyes. I put in drops to help loosen them before remova, but it can take half an hour after inserting drops for the lenses to rehydrate on my eyes and the fogging to clear enough to see somewhat clearly. My lenses never have any protein/mucus residue when I take them out, so that’s not why they fog.
Previously I had been using that weird homeopathic Ortho K Thick at night and the Thin in the morning (as per my optometrist’s recommendation) but I think they aren’t working for me. The thick one is so goopy that it can take half an hour for my toric lenses to stop sliding around before I go to bed (if they don’t settle first, I wake up super blurry) and my eyes are crusty with dried goop in the morning. Both of these drops sting when I put them in. Regardless of which I use before bed, I wake up super dry and my vision doesn’t get fully corrected when I wake up. I think the hydraulic forces stop working at the point in the night where my eyes get bone dry. I actually have less dryness if I use only saline and no drops at all, but the lenses barely stick to my eye when inserting and I still wake up dry and blurry all day. My optometrist says they fit perfectly but I’ve not had clear vision a single day yet (but I see clear right after I insert them at night) so I wonder if dryness is the problem.
Do you prefer thicker or thinner drops when inserting the lenses? Do you fill the bowl or insert drops before/after the lens? Do you use preservative free? How do you keep your eyes from drying out while sleeping? Did you find out you were sensitive to any specific ingredients/formulas?
Thank you!
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2023.02.02 22:47 IvorFreyrsson English Magic Volume 2, Ch. 4

FEATHER FALL!” I shouted, nearly to the ground. My fall slowed to a crawl, and I drifted the last ten feet, panting in fear, landing on my knees in front of none other than Blainaut.
“HOW ARE YOU NOT DEAD, YET!?” he screamed at me. Grabbing me by the collar, he hauled me to my feet. “Your mother would likely beat you to within an inch of your life had she seen that, you absolute buffoon!” He shook me like a rag doll, the anger and worry evident in his eyes. “As it is, I don’t know if I should step in for her, or if I should let Elizabet do the honors!”
“Let me do the honors for what?” As she surveyed the scene in front of her, she crossed her arms beneath her breasts, and her face fell into an expression of dismay and disappointment.
In a low, dangerous tone she said, “What. Did. You. Do?”
“Um… Hi, honey,” I weakly said.
“Shut your mouth. I’ll tell her,” Blainaut said, still holding my shirt in a fist.
Elizabet arched an eyebrow, “Well?”
“This absolute idiot just dropped himself from the ceiling,” sputtered my captor.
“I thought it would be fas-”
“Silence!”
“Yes, sir.” I hung my head in shame.
“I just watched him make no fewer than thirty lights up there, ringing a massive object in the center, which I’ve no doubt is for the benefit of the Haarthuu, and then he just…dropped down. I know it was intentional, too, as he looked around, first,” Blainaut explained. He turned to me and repeated, “Just how you have survived for forty years is far beyond me, Ivor. Your mother was absolutely right.”
He shoved me in Elizabet’s direction. “Here. He’s your problem.”
I stood there, waiting for something unpleasant. Kiri-tuk and the Elder were trying to hide their amusement at my predicament, and failing spectacularly.
Elizabet grabbed my shoulders and leaned down, her eyes boring into mine. “If you EVER get a wild hair up your ass again, ignore it,” she said in a soft, no-nonsense voice. “If you hurt yourself doing something stupid, I will ‘forget’ to numb you before healing you. Am I clear, Ivor Freyrsson?”
I swallowed audibly. “Yes, ma’am. Crystal,” I said meekly.
I looked at the cavern floor, shaking slightly. Elizabet took my chin in her hand and gently lifted my face.
“I’ll not lose you, Ivor. You’re stuck with me. Know it,” she said softly, kissing my lips gently.
“I hope I’m stuck with you for the rest of time,” I whispered.
She wrapped her arms around me and held me tightly.
“So! Tell me what you did up there?” she asked quickly.
“Yes, genius. Tell us what you made this time,” Blainaut said crossly, his hands on his hips.
“Well, I made a massive blacklight for them, and ringed it with lights that are each as bright as the full moon. Hopefully, it will maintain their health and give us all more light to see with,” I explained.
“And this was after he made several handheld lights for our medical center,” The Elder volunteered. He continued with “I watched him run up the wall and across the ceiling to get up there. It must be nearly fifty times his height, too. Absolutely impressive,” he said, obviously impressed.
I tried sinking into myself, as I could feel both Elizabet’s and Blainaut’s eyes boring holes into my head.
“Oh really?” Elizabet said, dangerously.
I looked up sheepishly. “Yeah… about that. I’ve eaten quite a bit since I made those. Once I had figured out how to make one, it was no trouble at all to simply Duplicate it.”
Elizabet stood there, tapping her foot in annoyance. “And?”
“And running up the wall was easy. I know a spell that allows me to basically move like a spider. I’ll teach you!” I said hopefully.
“No. What use would I have for that? I don’t go doing dumb things to have to run from. I don’t even like climbing trees. Why you felt it necessary to do all this in a single sitting is beyond me,” she said, crossing her arms beneath her breasts.
I looked at the floor and sighed. My enthusiasm for helping was going to hurt myself or someone I cared about. “I’m sorry, everyone. I guess I got too enthusiastic about getting things done. It’s…it’s a recurring theme in my life. I’m not sure why I go and go and go until I’ve literally nothing left to go on, or to give, but I do” -I looked up at the assembled group- “and I’d like to not do that so much, you know? I’d like to learn and know my limits. I just get so absorbed in what I’m doing, and so afraid to tell people ‘No’, that I just keep going. And eventually I wind up either doing something dangerous, like this, or falling over from sheer exhaustion,” I said, looking between Blainaut and Elizabet.
Elizabet stood in front of me and put her hand on my shoulder, saying, “You don’t have to do everything on your own, anymore. We’re your friends,” Blainaut nodded somberly. “And we will gladly help you. However we can. Okay?”
“She’s right, Ivor. I may not be able to use magic anymore, but I still have my mind. I can still devise ways of getting things done without the use of magic. Besides, who else am I going to fuss at for being a musclebound idiot?” he said, smiling warmly.
The Elder looked between the three of us, a smile creeping across his face once more. “Kiri-tuk? Have you taken the liberty of looking at your arms?” he asked.
“What? My arms? Why would I-” he stopped, dumbfounded, as he saw the colorful, swirling pattern of scales winding their way across his body. He traced the lines with a thick finger, the awe evident in his expression. “Is this… is this real?” he asked, looking up at me.
“Yes, Kiri-tuk. That is real and natural. The big light I made up there shines a special kind of light on all of us. For the Haarthuu, it causes the natural pigments in your scales to show up. Hopefully it helps with the bone sickness, too. Only time will tell. This may help explain why a lot of your clothes have a swirled pattern. I believe you all somehow perceive these colors without knowing you do. It would go a long way toward explaining some of your behaviors and ideals,” I explained.
Kiri-tuk gazed at his flesh in wonder for a moment longer, then looked up at me, tears in his eyes. “I’ve never seen myself so beautiful before. Thank you, friend.”
“You’re welcome. All of you” -I looked around at the growing crowd of Lizardfolk, who were awestruck at the sight of the colorful patterns on themselves and each other- “are very welcome. I really enj-” Before I could complete the sentence, my knees gave out, and I collapsed to the stone floor, unconscious.
Elizabet was the first to react, reaching out to grab me, and missing. “Shit! Ivor! Blainaut, help me with him. He’s passed out for some reason.” she said, worriedly.
“Dammit, man. I’ve warned him repeatedly about overdoing it,” he said, exasperated. “I’ll take his head, you get his feet.”
Together, they tried to heft me up, but I was deceptively heavy.
“What…in…the…world…?” Blainaut said, struggling. He gently set me down, staring at me, confused. “Is he made of stone?”
Elizabet grunted with the struggle. “I can’t even drag him.”
The Elder, always quick to act, had sent for his strongest masons and warriors as soon as he heard the commotion. “They’ll be here soon, Elizabet. Don’t worry yourself,” he said, gently patting her hand.
“But… He seemed just fine a moment ago. What happened?” she asked, tears in her eyes.
“I do not know. We will figure it out together. Don’t worry.”
A few minutes later, ten of the strongest Haarthuu arrived, and together, they lifted me up, and began carrying me to my room.
*********
I smelled the sea air, and heard the crying of gulls. Groggily, I opened my eyes, finding a very worried Freyr staring at me.
“We can’t keep meeting like this, Son. People will talk,” he said with a frown.
“What am I doing here, sir? One moment, I was talking to Kiri-tuk and the rest of the Haarthuu, and the next, I’m waking up here,” I looked at him, afraid of the answer. “What happened to me?”
“I don’t know. I just don’t know. Come, let us take you to Odin. He may have something,” he said as he gently helped me to my feet.
I leaned on him heavily, as my knees were still weak, as we made our way to the Great Hall. It was all I could do to put one foot in front of the other, let alone take in the sights of Asgard. The grass, I noted, was soft and ankle-high. A sweet smell came wafting up with every step we took. I stumbled several times on our way to the Great Hall. I simply had no energy. I wasn’t tired, just weak.
Eventually, we reached the door. Freyr kicked it in, yelling for Odin, who came running.
“What?! What is the meaning of-” he halted mid-sentence when he saw me. “Við höfuð Mimir! Ivor! What happened?”
I groaned as Freyr sat me down at the long table. “I have no idea, All-Father. One moment, I was speaking to Kiri-tuk, and the next, I woke up with Freyr’s worried frown in my face. I just feel so weak. I hope I’m not dead,” I said worriedly.
“Not dead yet, Son. The flow of Life still exists within you. I can see it,” Freyr said comfortingly.
“Tell me all that happened today, Ivor. I must know,” commanded Odin.
I began my tale of the day from when I awoke, to meeting with Loki, finishing with the events on the ceiling.
“...and as I was about to tell them how much I truly enjoy helping them, I apparently collapsed and woke up here. I don’t know what to make of it.” An Elf arrived, setting down a large mug of mead in front of me. I thanked her and she blushed prettily, then scurried away.
Odin sat back in his chair, stroking his beard in thought. “Loki, eh? Asked for a favor, and gifted you with his own daggers?” he sighed heavily. “I’ve no idea what mischief my blood brother is getting up to. Tread carefully there. It could be more than you’ve bargained for.” he shrugged.
“About this weakness, Odin? Have you any insight?” Freyr asked.
“No, but I think the person who may is just now arriving.” Odin said, standing. “Great Mother! A joy to see you brightening the Hall with your presence” -he placed a hand on his chest, giving a slight bow to the Lady- “here. To what do we owe the pleasure?” he asked.
The Great Mother hurried over to my side, straddling the bench, and wrapped me in her arms, holding me to her chest.
To say I was surprised would be an understatement. Even my gods looked at each other in wonderment.
After a moment, she held me at arm’s length, looking me up and down, a frown marring her divinely beautiful face. “I do not know who did this just yet, but I do know what has happened, and how to fix it,” she said serenely.
I cleared my throat, still reeling from being enveloped within her breasts. “Um… I’m ready to hear it.”
She looked me in the eyes and said, “Your magic was drained. All at once. This caused your body to go into shock, and you collapsed. Once you awaken, which may be a day or two; three at most, you will need to eat as much as you can. Much of your internal stores were destroyed at that moment. Your body will subsist on your excess mass, and once that burns off, you will wake. I shall teach you to safeguard yourself from this attack, and you will teach Elizabet. Tell no other. If you have a child, teach them, but that is it.”
I nodded, and replied with, “I’m a bit larger than most, My Lady. I’d be surprised if Elizabet and Blainaut were able to even shift my body” -I laughed- “more than four inches. I will teach Elizabet what you teach me, but I will not have children. I can’t. I had that option taken away from me a couple years ago. By choice.”
“Oh, I wouldn’t be so sure of that, big boy,” she said, leaning close to my ear, whispering “I made sure you could have everything you ever wanted in a family here once you settled on staying with your beautiful lady.” She leaned back and winked at me.
Both of my gods burst out laughing.
“Looks like you’ll truly take after me now, Son!” Freyr said, dropping onto the bench.
For his part, Odin sat back in his chair, smacking the table a couple of times. “Oho! This is too much. You shall have many strong, capable children.”
The Great Mother kissed my forehead softly. “I am the goddess of Life on Chaia. You will help build a world where my Children can live in peace,” she said gently.
I sat there, mouth agape. “You mean… I may already have gotten Elizabet pregnant?” I asked.
The Great Mother shook her head. “No, child. Not yet. Neither of you are ready. I shall keep that from happening for a time. When it does, you will know. Only when you can be assured of relative safety for her and the child, will it happen. I’ll not allow the future of my Children be put in harm’s way just because the two of you can barely keep your hands off the other,” she said with a smirk.
I turned red and Freyr giggled again. “Son, you’re gonna have to get used to this. You are definitely mine. Quit being a prude and revel in it! There is no shame in being true to your nature. Especially when done with a loving partner,” he said, smiling widely.
“Okay, okay. I get it.” I sighed, shaking my head. “What do I do in the meantime? My body is lying unconscious in Haruma, for most likely three days or more. Am I to stay here, in Asgard? Learn what The Great Mother has to teach me and just rest here?” I asked.
Odin looked at Freyr, who just shrugged. “I don’t see why not. You aren’t dead, and when you do die, we will be bringing you here. Assuming, of course, you do as we have agreed upon. Freyr will find lodging for you once the Great Mother is done with you.”
“Yes, sir.” I said, and turned to the Great Mother for Her instruction.
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2023.02.02 22:39 IvorFreyrsson English Magic Volume 2, Ch. 4

A/N - This is, so far, one of my more favorite chapters. Lots of good stuff here.
Guide available! Go here.
Series beginning is here.
[First] Prev/ Next

FEATHER FALL!” I shouted, nearly to the ground. My fall slowed to a crawl, and I drifted the last ten feet, panting in fear, landing on my knees in front of none other than Blainaut.
“HOW ARE YOU NOT DEAD, YET!?” he screamed at me. Grabbing me by the collar, he hauled me to my feet. “Your mother would likely beat you to within an inch of your life had she seen that, you absolute buffoon!” He shook me like a rag doll, the anger and worry evident in his eyes. “As it is, I don’t know if I should step in for her, or if I should let Elizabet do the honors!”
“Let me do the honors for what?” As she surveyed the scene in front of her, she crossed her arms beneath her breasts, and her face fell into an expression of dismay and disappointment.
In a low, dangerous tone she said, “What. Did. You. Do?”
“Um… Hi, honey,” I weakly said.
“Shut your mouth. I’ll tell her,” Blainaut said, still holding my shirt in a fist.
Elizabet arched an eyebrow, “Well?”
“This absolute idiot just dropped himself from the ceiling,” sputtered my captor.
“I thought it would be fas-”
“Silence!”
“Yes, sir.” I hung my head in shame.
“I just watched him make no fewer than thirty lights up there, ringing a massive object in the center, which I’ve no doubt is for the benefit of the Haarthuu, and then he just…dropped down. I know it was intentional, too, as he looked around, first,” Blainaut explained. He turned to me and repeated, “Just how you have survived for forty years is far beyond me, Ivor. Your mother was absolutely right.”
He shoved me in Elizabet’s direction. “Here. He’s your problem.”
I stood there, waiting for something unpleasant. Kiri-tuk and the Elder were trying to hide their amusement at my predicament, and failing spectacularly.
Elizabet grabbed my shoulders and leaned down, her eyes boring into mine. “If you EVER get a wild hair up your ass again, ignore it,” she said in a soft, no-nonsense voice. “If you hurt yourself doing something stupid, I will ‘forget’ to numb you before healing you. Am I clear, Ivor Freyrsson?”
I swallowed audibly. “Yes, ma’am. Crystal,” I said meekly.
I looked at the cavern floor, shaking slightly. Elizabet took my chin in her hand and gently lifted my face.
“I’ll not lose you, Ivor. You’re stuck with me. Know it,” she said softly, kissing my lips gently.
“I hope I’m stuck with you for the rest of time,” I whispered.
She wrapped her arms around me and held me tightly.
“So! Tell me what you did up there?” she asked quickly.
“Yes, genius. Tell us what you made this time,” Blainaut said crossly, his hands on his hips.
“Well, I made a massive blacklight for them, and ringed it with lights that are each as bright as the full moon. Hopefully, it will maintain their health and give us all more light to see with,” I explained.
“And this was after he made several handheld lights for our medical center,” The Elder volunteered. He continued with “I watched him run up the wall and across the ceiling to get up there. It must be nearly fifty times his height, too. Absolutely impressive,” he said, obviously impressed.
I tried sinking into myself, as I could feel both Elizabet’s and Blainaut’s eyes boring holes into my head.
“Oh really?” Elizabet said, dangerously.
I looked up sheepishly. “Yeah… about that. I’ve eaten quite a bit since I made those. Once I had figured out how to make one, it was no trouble at all to simply Duplicate it.”
Elizabet stood there, tapping her foot in annoyance. “And?”
“And running up the wall was easy. I know a spell that allows me to basically move like a spider. I’ll teach you!” I said hopefully.
“No. What use would I have for that? I don’t go doing dumb things to have to run from. I don’t even like climbing trees. Why you felt it necessary to do all this in a single sitting is beyond me,” she said, crossing her arms beneath her breasts.
I looked at the floor and sighed. My enthusiasm for helping was going to hurt myself or someone I cared about. “I’m sorry, everyone. I guess I got too enthusiastic about getting things done. It’s…it’s a recurring theme in my life. I’m not sure why I go and go and go until I’ve literally nothing left to go on, or to give, but I do” -I looked up at the assembled group- “and I’d like to not do that so much, you know? I’d like to learn and know my limits. I just get so absorbed in what I’m doing, and so afraid to tell people ‘No’, that I just keep going. And eventually I wind up either doing something dangerous, like this, or falling over from sheer exhaustion,” I said, looking between Blainaut and Elizabet.
Elizabet stood in front of me and put her hand on my shoulder, saying, “You don’t have to do everything on your own, anymore. We’re your friends,” Blainaut nodded somberly. “And we will gladly help you. However we can. Okay?”
“She’s right, Ivor. I may not be able to use magic anymore, but I still have my mind. I can still devise ways of getting things done without the use of magic. Besides, who else am I going to fuss at for being a musclebound idiot?” he said, smiling warmly.
The Elder looked between the three of us, a smile creeping across his face once more. “Kiri-tuk? Have you taken the liberty of looking at your arms?” he asked.
“What? My arms? Why would I-” he stopped, dumbfounded, as he saw the colorful, swirling pattern of scales winding their way across his body. He traced the lines with a thick finger, the awe evident in his expression. “Is this… is this real?” he asked, looking up at me.
“Yes, Kiri-tuk. That is real and natural. The big light I made up there shines a special kind of light on all of us. For the Haarthuu, it causes the natural pigments in your scales to show up. Hopefully it helps with the bone sickness, too. Only time will tell. This may help explain why a lot of your clothes have a swirled pattern. I believe you all somehow perceive these colors without knowing you do. It would go a long way toward explaining some of your behaviors and ideals,” I explained.
Kiri-tuk gazed at his flesh in wonder for a moment longer, then looked up at me, tears in his eyes. “I’ve never seen myself so beautiful before. Thank you, friend.”
“You’re welcome. All of you” -I looked around at the growing crowd of Lizardfolk, who were awestruck at the sight of the colorful patterns on themselves and each other- “are very welcome. I really enj-” Before I could complete the sentence, my knees gave out, and I collapsed to the stone floor, unconscious.
Elizabet was the first to react, reaching out to grab me, and missing. “Shit! Ivor! Blainaut, help me with him. He’s passed out for some reason.” she said, worriedly.
“Dammit, man. I’ve warned him repeatedly about overdoing it,” he said, exasperated. “I’ll take his head, you get his feet.”
Together, they tried to heft me up, but I was deceptively heavy.
“What…in…the…world…?” Blainaut said, struggling. He gently set me down, staring at me, confused. “Is he made of stone?”
Elizabet grunted with the struggle. “I can’t even drag him.”
The Elder, always quick to act, had sent for his strongest masons and warriors as soon as he heard the commotion. “They’ll be here soon, Elizabet. Don’t worry yourself,” he said, gently patting her hand.
“But… He seemed just fine a moment ago. What happened?” she asked, tears in her eyes.
“I do not know. We will figure it out together. Don’t worry.”
A few minutes later, ten of the strongest Haarthuu arrived, and together, they lifted me up, and began carrying me to my room.
*********
I smelled the sea air, and heard the crying of gulls. Groggily, I opened my eyes, finding a very worried Freyr staring at me.
“We can’t keep meeting like this, Son. People will talk,” he said with a frown.
“What am I doing here, sir? One moment, I was talking to Kiri-tuk and the rest of the Haarthuu, and the next, I’m waking up here,” I looked at him, afraid of the answer. “What happened to me?”
“I don’t know. I just don’t know. Come, let us take you to Odin. He may have something,” he said as he gently helped me to my feet.
I leaned on him heavily, as my knees were still weak, as we made our way to the Great Hall. It was all I could do to put one foot in front of the other, let alone take in the sights of Asgard. The grass, I noted, was soft and ankle-high. A sweet smell came wafting up with every step we took. I stumbled several times on our way to the Great Hall. I simply had no energy. I wasn’t tired, just weak.
Eventually, we reached the door. Freyr kicked it in, yelling for Odin, who came running.
“What?! What is the meaning of-” he halted mid-sentence when he saw me. “Við höfuð Mimir! Ivor! What happened?”
I groaned as Freyr sat me down at the long table. “I have no idea, All-Father. One moment, I was speaking to Kiri-tuk, and the next, I woke up with Freyr’s worried frown in my face. I just feel so weak. I hope I’m not dead,” I said worriedly.
“Not dead yet, Son. The flow of Life still exists within you. I can see it,” Freyr said comfortingly.
“Tell me all that happened today, Ivor. I must know,” commanded Odin.
I began my tale of the day from when I awoke, to meeting with Loki, finishing with the events on the ceiling.
“...and as I was about to tell them how much I truly enjoy helping them, I apparently collapsed and woke up here. I don’t know what to make of it.” An Elf arrived, setting down a large mug of mead in front of me. I thanked her and she blushed prettily, then scurried away.
Odin sat back in his chair, stroking his beard in thought. “Loki, eh? Asked for a favor, and gifted you with his own daggers?” he sighed heavily. “I’ve no idea what mischief my blood brother is getting up to. Tread carefully there. It could be more than you’ve bargained for.” he shrugged.
“About this weakness, Odin? Have you any insight?” Freyr asked.
“No, but I think the person who may is just now arriving.” Odin said, standing. “Great Mother! A joy to see you brightening the Hall with your presence” -he placed a hand on his chest, giving a slight bow to the Lady- “here. To what do we owe the pleasure?” he asked.
The Great Mother hurried over to my side, straddling the bench, and wrapped me in her arms, holding me to her chest.
To say I was surprised would be an understatement. Even my gods looked at each other in wonderment.
After a moment, she held me at arm’s length, looking me up and down, a frown marring her divinely beautiful face. “I do not know who did this just yet, but I do know what has happened, and how to fix it,” she said serenely.
I cleared my throat, still reeling from being enveloped within her breasts. “Um… I’m ready to hear it.”
She looked me in the eyes and said, “Your magic was drained. All at once. This caused your body to go into shock, and you collapsed. Once you awaken, which may be a day or two; three at most, you will need to eat as much as you can. Much of your internal stores were destroyed at that moment. Your body will subsist on your excess mass, and once that burns off, you will wake. I shall teach you to safeguard yourself from this attack, and you will teach Elizabet. Tell no other. If you have a child, teach them, but that is it.”
I nodded, and replied with, “I’m a bit larger than most, My Lady. I’d be surprised if Elizabet and Blainaut were able to even shift my body” -I laughed- “more than four inches. I will teach Elizabet what you teach me, but I will not have children. I can’t. I had that option taken away from me a couple years ago. By choice.”
“Oh, I wouldn’t be so sure of that, big boy,” she said, leaning close to my ear, whispering “I made sure you could have everything you ever wanted in a family here once you settled on staying with your beautiful lady.” She leaned back and winked at me.
Both of my gods burst out laughing.
“Looks like you’ll truly take after me now, Son!” Freyr said, dropping onto the bench.
For his part, Odin sat back in his chair, smacking the table a couple of times. “Oho! This is too much. You shall have many strong, capable children.”
The Great Mother kissed my forehead softly. “I am the goddess of Life on Chaia. You will help build a world where all of my Children can live in peace,” she said gently.
I sat there, mouth agape. “You mean… I may already have gotten Elizabet pregnant?” I asked.
The Great Mother shook her head. “No, child. Not yet. Neither of you are ready. I shall keep that from happening for a time. When it does, you will know. Only when you can be assured of relative safety for her and the child, will it happen. I’ll not allow the future of my Children be put in harm’s way just because the two of you can barely keep your hands off the other,” she said with a smirk.
I turned red and Freyr giggled again. “Son, you’re gonna have to get used to this. You are definitely mine. Quit being a prude and revel in it! There is no shame in being true to your nature. Especially when done with a loving partner,” he said, smiling widely.
“Okay, okay. I get it.” I sighed, shaking my head. “What do I do in the meantime? My body is lying unconscious in Haruma, for most likely three days or more. Am I to stay here, in Asgard? Learn what The Great Mother has to teach me and just rest here?” I asked.
Odin looked at Freyr, who just shrugged. “I don’t see why not. You aren’t dead, and when you do die, we will be bringing you here. Assuming, of course, you do as we have agreed upon. Freyr will find lodging for you once the Great Mother is done with you.”
“Yes, sir.” I said, and turned to the Great Mother for Her instruction.

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Hey! I’m also uploading my work on RoyalRoad! Here is my profile IvorFreyrsson
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2023.02.02 22:11 Helena-Handbasket89 Help! The Druid has main character syndrome

So a few months back, I joined a DnD group that I found on Facebook. We’re playing Drakkenheim and all started from lvl 1. It’s been great for the most part but I wouldn’t be here if there wasn’t an issue.
Just to set it up, there is me, an oathbreaker paladin, a ranger, a monk, a wizard, and the Druid. For the most part, most of us pull together and approach it like a team which I personally believe is a huge part of playing trrpgs.
Except the Druid.
At the very first encounter, he started combat before anyone had the chance to rp or anything so I was worried we had a murder hobo on our hands. Turns out, he’s just a “shoot first, ask questions later” kind of person. Fair enough. But as time went on, things got a bit…frustrating.
Now to be clear, I have nothing against the guy personally. He’s actually pretty nice and I also have played in a couple one shots he ran. Out of game, I really enjoy him.
Anyway, almost every week we have some kind of major encounter which is great. I love the balance of RP and combat. Early on, Druid was definitely playing like he was a team all on his own and that irked me because I personally believe that dnd should be about team work. But I was fine to keep that to myself as everyone plays dnd differently.
Now, before I go on, I think it’s only fair to mention that he and I are the only two with healing powers as we are both Aasimar. I don’t mind being a healer but I don’t want to be the only one healing either.
A week or so back is when things really started to reach a boiling point. We had to get into a cave to collect some flowers for a mission. We got into the city via the sewers and found several zombies, some kind of lizard thing, and the dreaded gelatinous cube. I got stuck in the cube so I lost a chunk of HP. No problem, I can heal myself. I also healed another PC who had gotten consumed by the cube. So my healing pool was down to 5 by the time we exited the sewers. It’s worth mentioning that we were level 4 so spell slots were limited for me.
We have to go through an empty garden and come across some baddies guarding the entrance to the cave where the flowers were. Druid takes one of his invisibility potions and then proceeds to RP going around the garden to collect the delirium (worth money) in the garden. This took a good 20 minutes of game time which irked me but again, to each their own. Finally we were moving again and he cast pass without a trace on the party to sneak past the guards. We descend into the cave and for the most part, everything is going smoothly.
We come across the former queen who was imprisoned and out of her mind. When she heard us, we kind of froze. Druid then says to me, “what do you say we put her out of her misery”. Really bro? As someone with mental illness, that hit wrong but that’s my issue. I was able to convince him to let me try a more….diplomatic approach. It ended up in combat in the end but it was worth a try.
The queen was some kind of Medusa creature and if you looked at her when she looked at you, it is an immediate 22 points of radiant damage. So I got the brunt of it. Thankfully I am resistant to radiant damage so it was only 11 but I had 32 hp so it was still pretty bad.
Now, Druid had taken another invisibility potion and snuck behind her at a distance. We went a couple rounds and he mainly prepared a big attack. A few rounds in, I was still in melee with her and took two massive hits that put me on 5 hp. I was also out of spell slots. So when the round started, I was in desperate need of healing. Yes I did have a healing potion, but I kept forgetting to use it. No healing that round. Her next attack knocked me out cold.
The monk went next and said something to the effect that she’d leave the healing to Druid since he had spell slots left. He told her that he wanted to “do a thing” so she should probably shove some healing potions down my throat. So the monk, who had been taking out minions this whole time, had to run across the room, risking taking a big hit, to shove her potion and mine down my throat. Keep in mind, the Druid was still invisible.
Druid took his turn and did his big “thing” which was to come at her from behind and attack, trying to gouge out her eyes. He only landed two attacks and did less than 20 damage so only poked out one eye. I know you can’t help it if an attack is successful, but the frustration was real as I was one of the people doing hella damage. We got her soon after and Druid got the death blow. I know it’s petty but the ranger, wizard and I had gotten her to nothing so it sucked that he got the kill but that is me being petty.
We returned to the village and leveled up then went shopping. Well Druid did. I was looking at my new spells so I wasn’t paying attention to what he bought.
The next day he Dms me and brags about his new half plate armor that gave him a 21 ac. I mentioned it to my partner who had been playing and dm-ing for 4 years and is currently playing a Druid. He told me that druids can’t wear metal so he couldn’t use the half plate. I passed that on to Druid and he said “I haven’t seen that rule before” It’s literally on the character page and probably on his sheet. So I sent him a screen shot of the rule. His response was a gif of someone saying “shhh”. I didn’t want to snitch but it really bugged me that he was asking me to be dishonest and trying to get away with being OP’d. I told him I wasn’t going to tell the Dm but that it wouldn’t be in the spirit of the game to keep it. Besides, I said, the character is pretty OP as is. He just responded with a “yeah he’s pretty powerful” and that was it.
I’m not sure what to do now. I’m not trying to police anything but it doesn’t feel fair to the rest of us for him to cheat. I don’t want to narc but I also don’t think he will be honest. If he doesn’t tell the dm, what should I do?
Also, I know that dm should have been on top of that but she’s got a lot on her plate and can be kind of spacey.
Any advice?
submitted by Helena-Handbasket89 to dndhorrorstories [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 21:56 FinnishLabranthya An Account of the Excursion to Discover the Origin of Azur Lanes: Part 12

First Previous Words: 3313 xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Chapter 9
I found myself deep in the cool reaches of my hull counting the ammunition supply. We had been run ragged, dashing up and down the coast for months now. Making matters worse some of our prey had required some more persuasion. We had finally caught our breath after a much-needed rest, and for the first time in weeks, we were taking stock of our supplies. Rangitaiki was covering our food, laundry, and other ‘lighter’ supplies that she better understood. I took stock of fuel, ammunition, and spare parts, objects I understood much better. I now found myself in an interesting conundrum.
I was on my third count of my ammunition for my 4.7-inch guns. Over the past few months, I had recorded every shell fired, and their reason in my logbook. Now instead of 987 shells, mainly expended practicing gunnery, I had a full 1200. Which should be impossible. I had taken a brief glance last week and I was definitely missing some, but as I didn’t count I had no idea how many. Now I somehow had a full complement. I laid down on my back keeping my legs crossed on the floor and thought. Staring at the ceiling in between boxes of powder and rounds.
I didn’t really have a good explanation. I had no real theories, well nothing that sounded solid and plausible. First, I miscounted how many shells I had fired. Second someone was sneaking shells onboard. The problem was I didn’t miscount, and having seen this world I doubted that anyone could make the shell. Furthermore, if someone could the chances of them finding us and getting aboard were so small it wasn’t even worth considering. I already knew I was something of an anomaly but that didn’t explain how I had somehow regained 213 shells.
Unable to come up with an answer I righted myself and stood up. I should run through the AA guns, though I had only used under 10 rounds of 40mm when we had rescued the Rickjin’s crew. I quickly checked the interior ammo, moving through the enclosed cave-like rooms, before returning to the deck. I waved to Rangitaiki, as we crossed paths near the radio room on my way outside.
“Anything we’re critically short on?” I asked, hoping to distract myself from my mysterious gain of shells.
“No, though maybe we should get some more clothes, as really despite how cool your laundry facilities are, we just don’t have much” I couldn’t help but agree as the basket in her hands was only halfway full. That was including everything we weren’t wearing, though not all the sheets and blankets aboard.
“Hmmm,” I really didn’t need many I had enough of my own outfit in the captain's main cabin. However, I doubted that Rangitaiki would be fine with so few outfits. “Let's finish this and make a plan for tomorrow” she nodded at that and we passed each other.
I opened the door and stepped out onto the main deck. I lowered my hood, and let the breeze blow through my hair. The sun was warm and nice on my skin, having just returned from the metal-encased magazines below the waterline. I stretched my arms, leaning against the railing just outside the door. Small waves and bird calls, meet my eyes and ears as I looked out across the water. I hoped that the next bounty would come soon, to maximize the great weather.
The first target was the 40mm ready-use ammunition. I wasn’t sure how it loaded itself, but when I wasn’t in combat or on edge the ammo could be found in this locker. standing up straight I headed down the gangway and amidships, where the 40mm gun was located. I ducked below the small boats and grasped the ladder. clambering up the sound of birds. I quickly opened the lockers and brushed my hair out of the way. I considered putting my hood up again but decided I’d get too warm. I sat down and started to lazily count the ammunition, letting my mind wander a bit. I couldn't help but reminisce about the different AA guns I’d had. An unfortunate necessity, as my duel purpose 4.7 in guns hadn’t been duel purpose enough. I did miss my … my thought process stopped at I realized what my count for rounds was.
I slowly looked down at the clipped rounds laying on the ground around me. Visually confirming what I had felt. A check on my logbook confirmed what I had counted. I had all of the rounds in the locker. I had fired roughly 10 rounds helping the Rickjin. Sitting in front of me was a full locker. Except I had a full magazine in my hull. I quickly stood up and bolted down to the deck, racing forward and back into the superstructure. I bolted up the gangways, and past the fire control room, onto the exterior gun position. I approached the 20mm guns and tore open the lockers. Just to see if they had full ammunition. Quickly counting, and rounding the superstructure to the second forward gun repeating the same hurried process.
That completed I reentered the superstructure and made my way to the main deck again, and aft. I rapidly passed the boats and 40mm position and approached the searchlight tower, where the last two light 20mm guns were. I hurled myself up the first ladder to the first gun. quickly opening the locker and counting as fast as I could. I paused once I had the numbers, before hurriedly, descending to the main deck again. Sliding between the searchlight tower and the aft torpedo tubes, I grasped the second ladder. I launched myself up and to the last ready-use locker. Within seconds I had my answer, and i couldn’t help but shudder.
They were full. No rounds were missing. While I have never fired my 20mms, I was hoping that some of the rounds might be missing to make up for the lack of the 40mm rounds. I stumbled back away from the locker and leaned against the rail, looking up past the searchlight. I had no idea what was going on, or what to make of it. Did this mean I had endless ammunition? Was there a limit? What else did this apply to? Though I already knew it did not apply to food, toiletries, or laundry detergent. My face crinkled up the more I thought about this, and how I didn’t understand what was happening.
I remained there for a time, letting the rocking and bird calls soothe me. I closed my eyes, and I threw my weight forward, and recovered from leaning. I put the rounds up I had pulled out, slowly making my way back past the torpedoes, to the other searchlight tower-mounted 20mm gun. I climbed up and slowly started putting the rounds up. counting them again just to do something, rather than think about what this could mean. Once I closed the locker I pulled my logbook out and leaned against the rail. I opened it and held my pencil ready to note the ammunition for the ready use in the aft guns. Only a few scrawled words in I thought I heard something. I scanned the horizon and noticed a sail.
I stored my logbook and took another look. As the boat got closer I recognized it. It was Earnest’s sailcraft. It was a small one-masted boat that he owned. I had seen him primarily take it out for weekend trips. I Waved at it and made my way to the main deck. It looked like it was Ernest and his daughters Eliza and Floria. I grabbed the cargo nets that were permanently ready and threw it over the side.
“Hey, whit ur ye doing oot here? It's rather unusual to see ye!” I called out as they approached. When we weren’t dashing up and down the coast, we were anchored behind the first island that we had many months back when we had first arrived in Torvica. as such if you knew where we were, it wasn’t hard to find out, though anyone heading into the harbor could see us easily if they approached from the right direction.
“Looking for you” came the reply. Earnest carefully watched, poised to move, as his two daughters climbed aboard.
“Oh? whit, cuid we h’ve done to attract attention?” I replied helping Eliza and Floria down to the deck from the railing. With them over, Earnest made sure his boat was fully secured, before coming up.
“Well” Earnest started, grasping the cargo nets. “I’m not quite sure how to breach the subject” he added. That was unusual, more so than him seeking us out.
“How aboot ye go forward?” I knelt and suggested to Eliza and Floria. I got a feeling that this might be a heavy subject. they nodded and ran forward laughing.
“Good call,” Earnest told me, swinging over the railing. neither he nor I wanted to start, so a tense silence started. with faint laughing from the bow drifting to us as we stood. “I’m afraid I have bad news” Earnest finally started. I didn’t like the sound of that, I tensed expecting to hear a bad update on one of the ships or people we had captured.
“The navy is coming for you. … I don’t know how or where, but somehow the government heard about you, and they want your ship.” That was all I heard.
shit, Shit, ShiT, SHIT. I had no steam built up at all! I couldn’t pull the anchors or I might drift onto the island or rocks. I was a sitting duck, I literally was trapped until I could get steam up. But how close were they? Could they just be around the island? Just out of sight? I started the breathe faster rapidly looking around. We had to get away, I wasn’t going to be the first Royal Navy ship in hundreds of years to be boarded and captured, nor did I want to drag Rangitaiki into this. I tried to run calculations in my head on how long it would take to raise enough steam to get underway. At the same time, I was feeling overwhelmed, all the battles I had fought and this was so different I could quite focus.
“Javelin, Javelin!” I heard Earnest yelling “Eliza, Floria! find Rangitaiki!” that was enough to start and breakthrough. I suddenly realized I was on my knees, and looked up. Earnest was anxiously hovering over me, hands awkwardly in the air.
“i-its-its okay” I managed to utter unsteadily rising, “Ye jus’ caught me off guard” I was now feeling much more focused. I didn’t know how close they were but I quickly started my engines and began to build up steam. I still didn’t have radar or ASDIC up, though the island would hamper it, up so I could only rely on my eyes. “Cuid ye repeat, some of ‘at?” I needed to make sure I hadn’t missed anything.
“JAVELIN!” before he could, I heard someone shout my name. we turned and saw that it was Rangitaiki. she had just come through the door and was racing towards us. “Are you okay? What's wrong?” she asked pulling me into a hug.
“I’m fine, better really” I coked out.
“Oh that’s a relief, what happened?” she asked again.
“The navy is coming for you two” Earnest replied, “they want to capture you to figure out how the ship works, you need to escape” Rangintiki tensed, and somehow managed to hug me harder.
“How soon?” she asked. I cursed myself for not asking that sooner.
“I don’t know, but we got the message yesterday. I know they are bringing in La Galissière to assist, so it could be weeks, or it could be days.” He answered. I didn’t recognize the name, and from the looks of it, neither did Rangitaiki. However, the fact the name was mentioned had to be a major ship in the fleet. However, this meant that we had some time to get ready. I loosened up at that, properly breathing again.
“‘at’s good, we have time then” I looked at Rangitaiki “I don’t think ‘at we will h’ve time to spare now to run ashore”
“Are you sure” It sounds like we have some time? I could run out now and get some things” I shook my head at that suggestion.
“Nae, I-we will be ready to steam in an hour, and if they ur coming fo’ us it's best we head oot soon to put th’ most distance between us an’ them” I told her. I quickly thought over some convoys and operations I had been a part of. Sadly none of them would help us in this situation. She reluctantly nodded, also letting go.
“Then we need to make sure we will be ready to sail” Rangitaiki replied “I’ll head up and get things stowed.” I nodded
“I’ll stow the deck objects,” I told her, starting forward to pack the ready-use lockers again.
“Javelin” I looked back hearing Earnest call my name. “Could you let us stay a little, I want Eliza and Flora to have one last time aboard?” I nodded at that, I didn’t know if we would come up here again, and I wanted to give them some happy memories.
“Ye have half n’ hour, we don’t want someone to put two and two together” He smiled and called his daughter's names. I rushed into my superstructure, and things started to blur. I quickly put the ammunition up in the three guns I hadn’t made it to yet. I ran several smaller things around for Rangitaiki. As steam built up my systems came online. I felt much better knowing that I was not fully defenseless now. soon it was time for Earnest and his daughters to leave, and both Rangitaiki and I saw them off. we stood and watched as his boat caught the wind and sailed off, all three of them waving at us.
“We need to discuss our course of action, and where we want to head,” Rangitaiki told me. I agreed with that thought, I for one did not want to wander aimlessly around a large ocean again.
“Let’s head up to the chart room then,” I told her “Wait! i need to check something, I’ll be real quick” With that, I raced aft and headed below to the hot engine room. I hadn’t gotten a chance to check to make sure it was fully working earlier due to the ammunition problem. A quick examination told me everything was in place and in working order. I just hoped that no engine problems would develop, as I expected this to be quite the dash. However, the main object was I wanted to check my fuel reserves. I hadn’t brought it up to Rangitaiki, but I was concerned bout fuel due to all the scampering we had done seeking bounties. I was expecting about a third or fourth left in the tanks. I held my breath as I checked the gauges.
It was full. I couldn’t believe that! Between the escape from the island and the bounty hunting, there was no way that the tank would be full. I had even turned the engine off for the couple of days we were here beforehand, just to make sure to save fuel. I shook my head, I didn’t understand what was going on. First the full ammunition load, now a full tank. I wanted to think more on it, but I could feel a good amount of steam being built up and knew I need to make a plan with Rangitaiki. So instead I noted this in my logbook and clambered back out onto the deck.
I wasn’t even panting when I entered the map room, despite my hard running. I quickly shook my head again to focus back on the main objective. There were just too many weird things going on.
“I’m here” I told her. she nodded in reply not looking up from the charts we had obtained in Torvica.
“Do you have an idea of what you would like to do?” she asked. I thought about that, I had heard rumors of things. Metal sea beasts that rapidly appeared and then left. New flying machines that made a buzzing sound, yet could not be replicated.
“Aye, I wuid lek to chase some of these rumors. They sound lek me, if ye didn’t know whit I wis.” she nodded at that as if expecting that answer.
“I agree, but that's a vague plan, where do you want to go, is the important part.” I approached the table and saw that she was looking at the world map. Her fingers traced possible routes to countries I didn’t know, lands that were vast.
“Here” I pointed at the ocean roughly analogous with the Atlantic ocean I knew. “I’ve heard some stronger rumors about the other side of the continent. and well. It's the closes thing to home I can call an ocean.” I elaborated, hoping she would agree with my reasoning. “Plus I don’t want to wander in the ocean we jus’ escaped from.” she laughed at that.
“I agree, so south it is!”
“Aye, I figure we run oot away from th' coast for a couple days then coast the rest of the way. Th’t way we can better navigate quickly.”
“Well perhaps only coast every couple of days, I am a navigator after all, we don’t need to constantly be in sight of land.”
“Even the best navigator can make mistakes. but, let's get underway first, and decide the finer details later” She nodded in ascension, and pulled her tools out, rapidly making a course for us to follow. I left her to it and, grabbing my javelin from where I had left it, headed up to the bridge. The wind had picked up a little with a chill in it and far to the west clouds were gathering. I pulled my hood up and looked south, making sure our path was clear. letting the wind and gentle rocking absorb me.
“We’re good to go!” my stupor was broken, by Rangitaiki’s appearance.
“Good, let's get underway!” I now had enough steam built up that we could leave. I raised the anchors and advanced the throttle. slowly my hull inched forward, carefully avoiding the rocks to my port side. Once we were clear I increased speed and made my way over to Rangitaiki. “So which way souid I head us?” I asked her
“We’re fine for now, I’ll let you know when to break south” she replied, hair waving in the wind. A smile spread across her face, “You know I love when we’re just heading out. It feels like a brand new adventure is coming. not just the simple thrill of sailing, but the fact I get to sail with you”
“Ye okay?, ye’r sounding like a sommant out of a novel,” I asked, hoping she wasn’t having second thoughts.
“No, just it feels weird to be leaving Torvica. well, that and the new does frighten me, I’m not ready to stop exploring with you javelin.” Came her reply. I could understand that. I looked forward and noticed something. despite the prevailing wind, there was a familiar sailboat ahead of us. “Is that?” I asked. Rangitaiki quickly had her binoculars, which she must have grabbed before heading up here, and looked.
“It is! they must have wanted to send us off!”
“Well, that heartening!” I waved at them as we passed, my hull gaining speed and leaving them behind. Soon I looked forward, shielding my eyes from the midafternoon sun. Looking forward to what awaited us to the south. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx I had a hard time finding the actual AA positions on Javelin for the condition her hull was in, and that made this chapter hard to write. To directly note, the 4.7-inch guns on the Tribal, J, K, and N classes were dual purpose (capable of Anti-air and Anti surface use) but the mounting type on the ship, limited the elevation of the guns, making them poor at close in AA use. Which is still better than the Germans who never made a dual propose Anti-air and anti-surface weapon.
submitted by FinnishLabranthya to AzurLane [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 21:38 nevermind1123 Life's Tangled Skeins - Part 26

Previous
First

It was good to be back into the Photic. Especially after everything that had happened. Emily had spent a few hours lying in bed in her quarters, trying and failing to fall asleep. Thus far, there hadn’t been much success. Her mind kept returning to unpleasant things.
The memories were bad enough, even if they could’ve been considerably worse. She still felt a little sick, whenever such thoughts came unbidden into her mind. More troubling were the questions that had started to surface.
Given how invasive the cranial implants were, had the intruders on the ship been acting of their own free will? Had her crewmates murdered a handful of innocent puppets? Then again, would such deaths be a mercy, releasing them from a fate that might be worse than death?
Such questions were more than sufficient to keep her thoroughly awake. At least she was back in the Photic now. It was comforting enough to be moving swiftly away from Evenhope, presumably never to return. The faint glow of the limited Photic radiation brought a unique sort of solace as well. Such comforts made things bearable, even if they weren’t enough to chase certain lingering thoughts away.
Increasingly, a specific thought had started to assert itself rather plainly. She didn’t want to be alone with her thoughts any more. Sure, she might be at a bit of a loss for what to say to others in the crew, but that didn’t matter. The need for company was enough to get her out of bed and more or less dressed, and propel her into the hallway.
When she wandered into the lounge, it was something of a relief to see Brick sitting there, apparently by himself. No great surprise, when she thought about it. Lily was busy with navigation. Ledger would be going through a rather large number of legal procedures dealing with the fallout of recent events. Ink and the captain were likely keeping busy with shared piloting duties. As for Patchwork, she could be anywhere in the labyrinthine passages between the rooms.
Brick looked over at her with a slight smile. “Freckles,” he said in a welcoming tone of voice.
“Hey,” she answered rather weakly.
“Looks like you’re still a little worse for wear.”
“Yeah,” she murmured in answer. “Still trying to sort all this out.”
“Anything I might do to help?”
She sighed, wandering over to the nearest couch and all but collapsing into it. “Probably should talk over what happened at some point, but not sure just how. I’m tired, Brick. Tired of thinking about recent events.”
He nodded sagely. “I won’t keep you on the subject long, then, but I’ll say this much. Any of us here is more than willing to listen, whenever you need to talk about it all. Whether that’s now, or some other time.”
“Thanks,” she sighed, trying her best to smile. “Mind if I ask a silly question?”
“Go right ahead.”
“Has anyone, like maybe Ink, or Lily, said anything about me?”
Brick thought for a few moments before answering. “Haven’t heard much, but from what little I did hear, they’re both sorry about what you had to see. Thing is, most wights aren’t as bothered about death as a lot of variants. Just, doesn’t instinctively turn their stomachs like it does for some people. Part of why they tend to be so formal and careful with outsiders.”
“Compensating?”
“Pretty much. All the more need for rules, when one is more easily able to do harm.”
“What about Ink?”
A sad little smile flickered over his face. “She’s got a history. We all do, on the Perchance. Part of why we’re here, and not somewhere else.”
Emily looked down at nothing in particular, letting out a small sigh. “I want to talk to them, but not sure what I’d say. I mean, they didn’t do anything to hurt me. If anything, it was the opposite.”
“But, you saw a side of them you maybe weren’t ready to see.”
“Yeah, exactly.” She felt a small, bitter laugh escape. “Here I said I didn’t want to think about all this for a while. Feels a bit better to talk, though.”
“Probably help if you talk with them, when you’re ready. In the meantime, you want to continue on with this conversation, or would you rather switch to something else?”
“I think, something else for now, at least.”
“Anything much in mind?”
She pondered briefly before nodding with a weak smile. “Scrimshaw, he mentioned you’d be the one to talk to about, whatever that was that made those two appear out of nowhere like that. Well, you or Patchwork.” She leaned back and closed her eyes. “Since you’re here, though.”
There was a slight creak as a small door opened in the wall. “Either of us,” Patchwork observed, “though both might be better. Hope you don’t mind a story.”
Emily felt a halfhearted little laugh slip out. “Sure, why not?”
There was a small impact on the deck, followed by a series of rapid footsteps. Then a slight whispering sibilance. When Emily glanced up, she saw Patchwork seated on the back of the couch right beside Brick’s shoulder. The two of them appeared to be talking quietly together. She closed her eyes again.
“Not sure quite where to start,” Brick offered.
Emily chuckled softly. “I’m scattered enough right now, I probably won’t notice if you start badly.”
“Well,” said Patchwork, “one might say it started with a bit of unconventional research.”
“Doesn’t narrow it down much,” Emily noted.
“True,” Brick replied, sounding rather amused. “This particular research was focused on the creation of a personal spatial confinement field.”
“Like the ones around ships for photic travel?”
“Essentially,” he responded.
“Wait,” Emily muttered. “Wouldn’t that require a bit too much hardware for one person to carry around?”
“Thus the unconventional nature of the research,” Patchwork noted rather dryly.
Emily shrugged absently, closing her eyes again. “So who was conducting this research?”
“We were,” Patchwork responded.
“I was the theoretician,” Brick added, “While Patchwork was the technician.”
This was enough to make Emily open one eye halfway in a sidelong glance. The two of them seemed entirely serious.
“So,” she murmured, closing her eye again, “Scrimshaw wasn’t pulling my leg. Ink turns out to have a background as an assassin. You two were professional researchers. At this rate, I won’t be surprised if Ledger used to be a death metal singer, while Lily used to be an exotic dancer.”
Both Patchwork and Brick dissolved into sudden laughter at this. It took a few moments for either of them to regain their composure.
“Far as I know,” said Brick, “neither of them were thus employed.”
“Any reason you’d think they were?” Patchwork asked.
Emily smirked as she shook her head. “Just leaning into the absurdity a little. Anyways, I guess you two were trying to make sort of a safety feature for photic travel?”
“In essence,” the ogre answered. “There was the possible application of an emergency system to prevent a person from getting smeared across higher dimensions, in the event of a field collapse. There was also the hope that, eventually, people might be able to explore the Photic directly.”
“Hopefully with a protective suit of some sort,” Patchwork added. “That would’ve come next. However, the early prototypes ended up turning the research in an unexpected direction.”
“Yes, in spite of Patchwork’s considerable fabrication skill, the personal field emitter wasn’t nearly powerful enough to maintain cohesion in extraspatial conditions. It was able to partially isolate a subject from the surrounding space, though.”
“Not sure what that would accomplish,” Emily quietly observed. “I mean, you can’t go out into the Photic, and the Aphotic would be out of the question as well. So, that just leaves conventional space. One thin little layer of reality wedged between the two big bottomless oceans. Then again, I guess Scrimshaw did mention parallel layers alongside one another?”
This drew a sly chuckle from Patchwork. “Far as most folks know, there’s just the one layer. Conventional wisdom, which we believed as well, at first. Trouble is, once partially isolated from normal space, we, or rather I, noticed something odd.”
“Like the captain mentioned,” said Brick, “there isn’t just one layer of normal space.”
This opened both of Emily’s eyes, and she sat up a little straighter. “So how many are there?”
Patchwork was grinning widely. “In fact, as it turned out, there are five.”
“Wait, if ships have been entering and leaving the Photic for thousands of years, why did nobody notice this?”
“That would take a bit of explaining,” Brick answered, his brow creasing slightly. “What we know as normal space is more or less the ground state of space. It’s, like the lowest energy electron orbital in an atom. A sort of default for things to end up at, when they enter normal space.”
Patchwork nodded. “And since the five layers are infinitesimally thin along higher dimensions, and stacked up side by side, they go unnoticed as you pass through them.”
Brick shook his head. “Not technically even stacked side by side. They’re more like facets of the same space.”
The gnome smirked a bit, letting out a small sigh. “That only further emphasizes my point.”
Emily cleared her throat softly. “So, how are they linked? And why only five, for that matter?”
Brick thought a little while, then nodded slightly to himself. “If you don’t mind a tortured metaphor, I could try and explain maybe.”
“Torture away,” Emily responded with a welcoming sort of gesture. “Gives me something to distract my mind with, if nothing else.”
The big man smiled a bit crookedly. “You familiar with the five regular polyhedra?”
“Not, really?”
“Five basic shapes, made up of symmetrical polygon faces arranged into three-dimensional solids.”
Emily thought a moment or two, then smiled faintly. “Sounds like you might be talking about the Platonic solids. Would one of them be a cube?”
He shrugged. “That would be the familiar one for most, yes. Sometimes also called a hexahedron.”
“Right,” she answered, thinking for a few moments. “Five of these possible shapes, five layers of space. Coincidental, I suppose?”
“That or, equivalent,” he responded somewhat uneasily. “The mathematics are rather arcane for the real thing, but the basics of these shapes stand in well enough. Do you know why there are only those five?”
“Thought there were quite a few more polyhedra.”
“There are,” said Patchwork, “but these five are the only ones that have radially symmetrical polygons with straight edges, all of the same type and dimension for a given polyhedron.”
Emily nodded slowly. “Okay, fine, let’s just go with it. Why only five, then?”
“It has to do with the rules that generate them,” Brick responded. “Starting with the simplest option, the tetrahedron. The rule here is three equilateral triangles sharing a common vertex. You set that as the rule for every vertex, you’ll always get a tetrahedron. Four triangular faces enclosing a bit of space.”
“With you so far.”
“From here,” he continued, “there are two ways you can go. Either you increase the number of triangles sharing a vertex, or you increase the number of sides per polygon.”
“First option, then?” Emily ventured with a slight shrug.
“Alright, four triangles sharing a vertex will get you an octahedron. Five sharing a vertex gets you an icosahedron.” He grinned rather sharply. “But what happens if you force six equilateral triangles onto the same vertex? Keep in mind, each of these has an angle of sixty degrees.”
“Six by sixty,” Emily murmured. “three hundred and sixty.” A couple of seconds passed before the answer hit her. “An infinite plane made up of connected triangles?”
“Exactly,” Brick responded with an approving sort of smile. “Now going the other way, if you join up squares three to a vertex, you get a cube. Doing the same with pentagons gets you a dodecahedron. So what do you suppose you get trying to join hexagons three to a vertex?”
Emily smirked. “Same thing. Thrice one hundred and twenty degrees. An infinite plane of joined up hexagons.”
Brick nodded. “Which is why there are only five of these shapes in standard three-dimensional space. So now to the metaphor, the space we commonly occupy is a little like a tetrahedron. The simplest shape.”
“Also, its own mirror image,” Patchwork added.
“Mirror image?” asked Emily.
“In a manner of speaking,” the ogre responded. “Consider a cube for a moment. It’s probably the easiest shape for most people to picture. If you were to take the middle of each of the six squares and turn it into a point, and take the eight corners of a cube and make them the middle of eight triangles, you’d have an octahedron. The two shapes are equivalent forms.”
“Or mirror images,” Emily noted.
“Right. Same thing with an icosahedron or a dodecahedron. They’re equivalents to each other.”
“I suppose an infinite plane of triangles and an infinite plane of hexagons would also be equivalents.”
“For all intents and purposes,” Brick responded. “It’s different with a tetrahedron, though. If you were to swap out the four points of a tetrahedron with the four centers of each triangular facet, you’d just get another tetrahedron.”
“Okay,” Emily muttered, “so put this little metaphor into focus for me.”
The big man gave an agreeable nod. “Very roughly speaking, normal space is like a tetrahedron. The Photic is like an infinite plane of triangles. The Aphotic, an infinite plane of hexagons. The four additional layers of space are like the four remaining regular polyhedra.”
“So what, something like a cube and a dodecahedron between normal space and the Aphotic, and something like an octahedron and an icosahedron between normal space and the Photic?”
“In essence,” he responded.
Emily leaned back again, closing her eyes. “You’re right. That is a tortured metaphor. Guess I get the point, though. So, the extra layers, are they something like a combination of normal space and the outer realms?”
“More or less,” Patchwork responded. “Using the polyhedral names, the octahedral layer is something like a hazy dream world version of normal space. It’s bright, and everything is a bit out of focus. Solid objects are still solid, though. You get up to the icosahedral layer, and it’s really blurry. You also are able to force your way through solid objects. Or, around them might be more accurate from a certain perspective.”
“What about things like breathing?” Emily asked suddenly. “Is there atmosphere there?”
“In the octahedral layer, yes. Icosahedral, not exactly, but you’re so close to the Photic at that point, your cellular metabolism can be directly sustained without any need for breathing.”
“Has to have side effects,” Emily murmured.
Patchwork smirked rather lopsidedly. “Possibly, but we were never able to stay in that layer longer than a few moments. Kept collapsing back into octahedral, and then eventually tetrahedral.”
“Not unlike an electron finding its lowest open orbital,” Brick added.
Emily nodded slightly. “So, what about the cube and dodecahedron layers?”
Patchwork shuddered slightly. “Think of a shadow of the world you know, and that’s pretty much the cube layer. The dodecahedron layer, I only visited once. Rather not say what sort of things I saw there.”
“Hang on,” Emily said suddenly. “You could see normal space from the two adjacent layers, right?”
“Yes, more or less,” the gnome answered.
“But you can’t see either of those layers from normal space.”
Brick shrugged. “You can’t see the Photic or the Aphotic from normal space either. Best theory we’ve got for now, the two sides cancel each other out when you’re right in the middle. Like two opposing waveforms overlapping.”
“Curiouser and curiouser,” Emily murmured.
“You don’t know the half of it,” Patchwork responded. “Told you how the research started, haven’t told you how it ended yet.”
“Haven’t even really heard the stuff in between yet,” Emily observed.
“Fair enough,” Brick sighed. “The short version, once the field emitter showed evidence of parallel space layers, we managed to sort out something a little like a sideways drive.”
Patchwork let out a sharp bark of laughter. “Yeah, though if a sideways drive was like a nuclear reactor, this little add-on was like a small campfire.”
The ogre nodded. “Much smaller, much less energy intensive. Especially when we managed to utilize a core of strange matter from the Photic.”
“Wait, what?” Emily asked rather flatly.
Patchwork waved her hand dismissively. “Another story entirely. Short version, we figured out how to collect some of that material the ships have to slip through during Photic travel. It’s a temperamental energy source, but reliable once you play by the rules. Biggest rule being, don’t get any significant amount of the stuff together in one spot, inside normal space.”
“What happens if you do that?” asked Emily.
“Something like radioactive material reaching critical mass,” Brick responded. “Only instead of an explosion, the stuff forcibly moves back into the Photic. Trouble is, it rips space apart on the way through, and it takes a little while for space to repair itself afterward.” He quickly shook his head. “The microquantities we use in the personal field emitter and micro sideways drive aren’t anything to worry about, though.”
“Right,” Emily murmured, feeling less than convinced. “So you rigged up a system allowing you to slip between the five layers. What happened next?”
Patchwork looked a little hesitant as she responded. “Before we could publish our findings, a number of strange things started happening around the facility. Files would go missing, reliable equipment suddenly broke. People started having nightmares.”
Brick nodded rather grimly. “One of our researchers, a wight like Lily, declared that we had angered the outer gods with our meddling. They left the facility and severed all ties. It wasn’t much later that things started getting truly bad.”
“The nightmares worsened. Then, one of our technicians just vanished entirely. Going through their personal effects, we found out they were planning on leaking our research to a company in the hopes of gaining a cut of the profits. After that, most of the remaining team left. Eventually, it was just down to the two of us.”
“That’s when we started finding the messages,” Brick continued with some hesitation.
“What sorts of messages?” Emily asked, uncertain as to whether she actually wanted an answer.
“Raised lettering on the walls,” Patchwork answered. “Scans showed the wall material had been distorted on a fundamental molecular level. It had been, twisted just enough to raise the letters noticeably out from the otherwise flat surface.”
Emily spoke in a voice grown rather quiet. “What did these letters say?”
“We didn’t know at first,” said Brick. “Then, we remembered the wight that had left us. A bit of searching through various databases revealed an antiquated form of script native to the wights. After using some translation software, we found just a handful of basic phrases repeated several times.”
Patchwork nodded grimly. “The first one we deciphered said something roughly like, ‘you may keep the knowledge you have earned.’ That was probably the least worrying one.”
“What about the rest?”
The gnome shuddered again. “Things along the lines of ‘do not share what you have learned,’ which might also be interpreted as don’t publish this research. There was also, ‘keep out of the dark layers.’ That wasn’t at all comforting.” She looked over at Brick. “Wasn’t much later this big lug decided to try and write a few messages in answer. It was easy enough to rig up a rather large wight-compatible screen on one of the walls.”
“The sort that can temporarily raise bits of the surface?” Emily asked.
“Exactly,” Brick replied. “I entered a message, and got an answer just a few seconds later on the same device. In a room that appeared to be entirely empty, apart from Patchwork and myself.”
“Must’ve been a tense conversation,” Emily noted.
“To put it mildly.” He glanced down, taking a small scrap of folded paper out of one of his pockets. “Thought you might ask about this, so I brought my little transcript of that conversation.”
“No electronic copies?” she asked, carefully taking the yellowed paper in hand.
“We didn’t dare,” Patchwork said quietly.
Emily unfolded the paper and saw quite a few lines written in standard Mid script. The handwriting was quite small and relatively neat. Patchwork’s penmanship, if she had to guess. There were two variations of script, presumably indicating the two sides of the conversation. She slowly began to read in silence.

“Are you willing to converse?”
“We are.”
“Can you clarify your statements?”
“We can.”
“Would you please do so?”
“Indicate which statements.”
“To begin with, you said we can keep the knowledge we have earned.”
“You found the knowledge of the hidden places. The two of you may continue to use the devices you have created to explore them, within limits.”
“What are the limits?”
“Stay out of the dark places.”
“Meaning do not explore the layers between central and Aphotic?”
“Correct.”
“Why?”
“They are ours. We do not appreciate your bringing Photic matter into them.”
“Understood. Please clarify, we are not to share our research.”
“You were preparing to disseminate this information to the community of many worlds. We will not permit this.”
“May we share with trusted individuals?”
“We do not object to this, so long as they abide by these restrictions.”
“Restrictions being do not publish, and stay out of the dark layers?”
“Correct.”
“We are willing to comply, but there is a concern.”
“What is this concern?”
“Others will inquire as to our research.”
“Not acceptable. Abandon the facility.”
“Others may still seek us out for inquiry.”
“Abandon your known identities.”
“Others will likely visit after we are gone.”
“This is not acceptable.”
“What if the facility was destroyed, and others believed we were also destroyed?”
“This is acceptable. What is your proposed method of destruction?”
“A critical mass detonation of accumulated Photic matter. This should leave no traces.”
“Your proposal is being considered. Standby.”
“Proposal is approved. Commence after seven local day cycles.”
“Is there any possibility of reimbursement for losses?”
“Retention of your research. Permission to continue covertly. Permission to share with trusted associates. Continuity of your existence.”
“What of our missing researcher?”
“Their continuity is broken. Return is impossible.”
“May we disclose your existence to trusted associates?”
“Yes, but no further. Wights will understand most readily.”
“Are you willing to aid us in maintaining our false identities?”
“Explain in greater detail.”
“Would any of you be willing or able to render aid, such that we are more easily able to remain unknown, and keep our research hidden?”
“We are willing to provide limited aid, on a case by case basis. Understand, our intervention is not usually considered to be desirable.”
“Understood.”
“We have an agreement.”

Emily folded the paper up, and handed it back to Brick. “I assume there were no further messages after that?”
“There have been limited communications since then, but always rather isolated.”
“Thankfully benign,” Patchwork added. “Within seven days, we’d managed to harvest a fair bit of Photic matter and sort it into carefully confined packets. We rigged up a device to combine these packets. Then we set a timer, and got away as quick as we could.
“Felt the shock wave even out in the Photic,” Brick noted. “The disaster was in the news for a little while, and there were all sorts of odd rumors from the researchers that had left the facility. These quieted down a lot though, after a relatively short span of time.”
“Guessing they got a few messages?” Emily ventured.
“That, and some vanished,” Patchwork sighed. “Not sure if they chose to disappear from public life, or if they were taken. Honestly, we try not to think about it too much.”
“Anyway,” said Brick, “it wasn’t long after that we stumbled across Ink and Scrimshaw. Actually met them while we were trying to find some folks to forge new identities for us. Ended up going into business together. Got a new ship, hired on Ledger.”
Patchwork smirked. “Went through a few navigators before settling on Red.”
“Does she know about this?”
The gnome nodded. “Sworn to secrecy like the rest of us. Think maybe she’s stayed this long because of her people’s legends. They fear their so-called gods, but they also venerate them.”
Emily smirked a little. “And Lily’s just stubborn enough to stay around, rather than bow out.”
“More or less the shape of it,” Brick responded. “Anyway, that’s all we’ve really got to share with you on that subject.”
“Oh I don’t know,” Emily offered with a sly little grin. “Neither of you mentioned whether there were any more of those little devices available for use.”
Patchwork matched her grin, shaking her head a couple of times. “Standard issue for crew that are in the loop. Need to be custom tailored though, so it’ll take a bit of time to get you properly outfitted.”
“I’ll look forward to it.”

Next
submitted by nevermind1123 to HFY [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 20:06 Potential-Pirate-784 The Stockers Revenge The Story of Klaus Stronberg

Xofyerg Tales
51-year-old Klaus Stronberg was an exhausted dock worker, with long hair that fell around his thin, face. He lived in poverty in 19th-century London, where the cold winter nights were especially cruel. On one such evening, Klaus was at home, relaxing by the fireplace with his loyal companion, a German Shepherd named Dante. They sat together in comfortable silence, Klaus lost in a book, while Dante lay by his side, contentedly dozing.
The fire flickered and danced, casting long shadows on the walls as the wind howled outside. Klaus took a sip of his warm tea and smiled contentedly, grateful for the peacefulness of the moment. He reached down to pet Dante, who lifted his head and licked Klaus's hand affectionately. Klaus couldn't help but feel a sense of gratitude for his loyal companion, who had been by his side through so much.
But their peaceful evening was soon interrupted by a stranger, lurking and spying on them from outside. Klaus could hear the sound of footsteps crunching in the snow outside his window, and he knew that it was not just any passerby. "Who's there?" Klaus called out, trying to keep his voice steady.
"It's me, Klaus. Let me in," a twisted voice replied from outside.
Klaus's heart began to race as he realized that the stranger standing outside his door was none other than the stocker from the docks where he worked. The stocker had a notorious reputation, known for his erratic behavior and a personal grudge against Klaus. Klaus had tried to ignore him, hoping that he would eventually leave him alone, but the stocker had been relentless in his pursuit of Klaus.
As the stocker began to bang on the door and shout insults, Klaus could feel a mixture of anger and fear rising within him. The stranger's taunts grew increasingly aggressive, and Klaus knew that the stocker's twisted mind had a personal vendetta against him. Klaus tried to reason with the stocker, pleading with him to leave him alone, but the stocker's only response was maniacal laughter.
The environment around Klaus was silent and deserted, with not a soul in sight for miles. The darkness of the night enveloped him, and Klaus felt a sense of isolation and vulnerability wash over him. His dog Dante, sensing his fear, began to bark ferociously, the hairs on his back standing up as he prepared to attack.
"You think you can hide from me, Klaus? I'll find you, and I'll make you pay for what you did to me," the stocker shouted, his voice filled with rage. Klaus could see the stocker's distorted face through the peephole, twisted in anger and hatred. Klaus knew that he had to act fast, he couldn't let this man continue to torment him. He held onto Dante tightly, hoping his dog would protect him from the stocker, who seem to be getting more aggressive with each passing moment.
Klaus knew that he had to protect himself and his dog, Dante, from the stocker. He couldn't let the stocker continue to terrorize him. He went outside, Dante by his side, determined to confront the stocker. He searched the area, his eyes scanning the darkness for any sign of the stocker. But, he was nowhere to be found. Klaus felt a sense of unease, but he refused to let the stocker's taunts and threats get the best of him. He knew that he had to take control of the situation.
The neighborhood where Klaus lived was a poor one, abandoned buildings made of wood were falling apart, and rat feces littered the ground. The only source of light was from the full moon and the lantern that Klaus was carrying. The eerie shadows cast by the moonlight made the already-dilapidated buildings look even more menacing. Klaus could hear the sound of rats scurrying in the darkness and the creaking of old wooden boards beneath his feet.
As he walked around, he could feel the stocker's presence, like a dark cloud hanging over him. The stocker's rage was palpable, and Klaus could feel his madness emanating from the shadows. Klaus knew that this was his chance to finally put an end to this. He took a deep breath, trying to steady his nerves and gain enough courage to finally confront his enemy.
He called out to the stocker, his voice filled with anger and frustration, "Come out and face me, you fucking coward! I ain't afraid of you and your fucking mental issues." Klaus held Dante tightly, the dog ready to defend him if needed. Klaus's heart was pounding in his chest, but he refused to back down. He waited for the stocker's response, ready for whatever may come. The dim light of the lantern in his hand was the only source of light in the abandoned neighborhood, casting an eerie glow on the surroundings while they were looking for the stocker.
Klaus searched the area for the stocker, but he found no trace of him. The only thing he could see were footprints in the snow that eventually faded away. Klaus called out to the stocker, but there was no response. He searched for any sign of him, but it was as if he had vanished into thin air.
Klaus felt a sense of frustration and disappointment wash over him. He had been so sure that he would finally be able to confront the stocker and put an end to his torment. But, it seemed that the stocker had outsmarted him yet again.
He headed back into his home, Dante by his side. The dog seemed to have calmed down, as if sensing that the danger had passed. Klaus couldn't shake off the feeling of unease, he knew that the stocker's threat was still looming over him. But, he knew that he would have to be more prepared next time, he couldn't let the stocker continue to torment him.
He locked the door behind him and tried to shake off the chill of the night. He knew that he had to keep watch, the stocker could come back at any moment.
The wind outside howled and whistled as Klaus peered out of his window, desperately searching for any sign of the stocker. The snow was falling thickly, obscuring his vision and making it difficult for him to see more than a few feet in front of him. Klaus knew that the stocker was out there, somewhere, hiding in the shadows, waiting for the perfect opportunity to strike.
Suddenly, Dante began to growl once again. Klaus's heart skipped a beat as a loud crash against the front door startled him. He heard laughter coming from outside and realized that the stocker was back. Without hesitation, Klaus swung the door open and began searching for any sign of the stocker. He called out to him, his voice filled with anger and determination, "I know you're out there! Show yourself!"
He made his way down the deserted streets, the only sound was the crunching of the snow under his feet. Klaus could feel the stocker's presence, like a dark cloud hanging over him. The stocker's madness seemed to be emanating from the shadows, filling the air with a sense of dread. Klaus knew that he had to be on guard, he could not let the stocker catch him off guard.
As Klaus walked, he could hear the stocker's voice, taunting him with cryptic words, "You cannot escape the shadows, Klaus. They will always find you, and make you pay for your sins." Klaus's blood ran cold as the stocker's words echoed in his mind, leaving him wondering what he meant by those words. He knew that the stocker was not going to give up until he had his revenge. Klaus's heart was pounding in his chest as he made his way outside, his hand tightly gripping Dante's collar. The dog was agitated, sensing the danger that was lurking in the darkness. Klaus could feel the tension in the air, knowing he had to be careful. Klaus could hear strange sounds in the distance, like a faint whispering, he couldn't make out what they were saying but they gave him the chills. The wind was blowing fiercely, making the branches of the trees rustle and a faint howling
Klaus continued to search the streets, his heart pounding in his chest. He knew that he had to find the stocker before it was too late. He searched the nearby alleyway, but he couldn't find any sign of the stocker. The snow was falling thicker now, and Klaus could barely see a few feet in front of him.
As the night wore on, Klaus's fear and paranoia grew. He knew that the stocker was out there, somewhere, waiting for the perfect opportunity to strike. Klaus could feel the tension in the air, and he knew it was only a matter of time before the stocker's twisted plan reached its deadly conclusion. He knew that he had to find the stocker, he had to protect himself and Dante from the stocker's wrath.
Finally, Klaus heard a sound coming from an abandoned warehouse on the edge of town. He knew that it was the stocker, and he prepared himself for the final confrontation. Klaus and Dante entered the warehouse cautiously, Klaus's heart was pounding in his chest as he made his way through the dark, musty interior. He could hear the stocker's ragged breathing, and he knew that he was getting closer.
The stocker was waiting for Klaus in the shadows, his madness and anger were evident in his twisted face. Klaus could see the hatred in his eyes, and he knew that the stocker was not going to give up until he had his revenge. Klaus and Dante fought back with
Klaus and Dante both determined to defend themselves against the stocker. Klaus was a thin, middle-aged man with long hair that fell around his gaunt face. His eyes were sunken and tired, a testament to the long hours he had spent working at the docks. His clothes were worn and threadbare, but he held himself with a sense of determination.
Dante, on the other hand, was a fierce German Shepherd, with fur as black as the night. His eyes were sharp, and his muscles were coiled, ready for action. He stood by Klaus's side, growling low in his throat, ready to defend his master at all costs.
The warehouse was an eerie and abandoned place, with cobwebs hanging from the rafters and a musty smell that hung in the air. The floorboards creaked underfoot, and Klaus could feel the tension in the air. The only light came from a few flickering candles, casting long shadows on the walls.
The stocker was waiting for Klaus in the shadows, his twisted face contorted with anger and madness. His eyes were wild and filled with hatred, and his hands were clenched into fists. He was a large man, with thick, greasy hair and a thick beard. He wore a tattered coat that hung from his broad shoulders, and his boots were caked with mud.
"You can't hide from me, Klaus," the stocker spat, his voice filled with rage. "I'll find you and make you pay for what you did to me." Klaus could feel the stocker's anger and hatred, and he knew that he was not going to give up until he had his revenge.
"I don't know what you're talking about," Klaus said, trying to keep his voice steady. "I've never done anything to hurt you."
The stocker laughed, a harsh, maniacal sound that echoed through the warehouse. "You think I'm going to believe that? You think I don't know what you did? You ruined my life, Klaus, and now I'm going to ruin yours."
Klaus could see the madness in the stocker's eyes, and he knew that he had to be careful. He stepped forward, trying to keep a safe distance between himself and the stocker. "I'm warning you, stay away from me and my dog," Klaus said, his voice filled with a sense of determination.
The stocker's face twisted into a sneer. "Or what? You think you can stop me? I'll show you who's in charge here."
With that, the stocker lunged at Klaus, his hands reaching for his throat. Klaus was quick to react, sidestepping the stocker's attack and striking him with a swift punch to the face. The stocker stumbled back, his nose bleeding and his eyes filled with rage.
Dante, sensing the danger, lunged at the stocker, biting him on the arm and pulling him back. The stocker howled in pain and fury, but Klaus was able to strike him again, knocking him unconscious.
Klaus and Dante were both breathing hard, their hearts pounding in their chests.
Klaus and Dante were both relieved that the stocker was finally unconscious, but they knew that their fight was far from over. Klaus's knuckles were bruised and bleeding from the punches he had thrown and Dante had a few cuts and bite marks on his arm from the fight.
Klaus's emotions were running high, a mix of fear, anger, and relief. He couldn't believe that he had been forced to defend himself against such a twisted and violent individual. He felt a sense of disgust towards the stocker and a sense of gratitude towards Dante for his bravery.
The stocker was still unconscious, but Klaus could see the anger and hatred contorting his face even in his state. Klaus knew that the stocker was not going to give up, he would be back, and Klaus had to be ready for him. Klaus knew that he had to find a way to protect himself and Dante from the stocker's wrath.
Klaus knew that he couldn't stay in the warehouse, he had to get out before the stocker woke up. Klaus grabbed Dante by the collar and quickly made his way out of the warehouse. The snow was falling thickly now, and Klaus could barely see a few feet in front of him.
As they walked, Klaus could feel the stocker's presence, like a dark cloud hanging over him. He knew that the stocker was not going to give up until he had his revenge. Klaus's heart was pounding in his chest as he made his way through the deserted streets, the only sound was the crunching of the snow under his feet.
Klaus knew that he had to find a safe place to hide, he couldn't stay out on the streets. The cold was affecting Dante. Dante was now limping and shaking from the cold. The snow was now up to his calve. He had to find shelter. He made his way to an old saloon that had been closed for many years on the edge of town. Klaus knew that it was too dangerous to wander the streets any longer, it was the only place that could provide decent shelter from the weather.
As they entered the building, Klaus couldn’t help but feel that he had not escaped. He knew that the stocker was not far behind, and he had to be ready for him. Klaus and Dante made their way to the top floor, and Klaus barricaded the door with whatever he could find. Klaus knew that it wouldn't hold the stocker for long, but it would buy him some time.
Klaus sat down against the door, his heart still pounding in his chest. He knew it was only a matter of time before the stocker found them. Klaus was determined to protect himself and Dante, no matter what it took. He knew that the night was going to be a long one, and he braced himself for what was to come.
The place was run-down, with worn baseboards and peeling wallpaper. The floorboards creaked underfoot, and Klaus could feel the dampness in the air. The webs consumed the walls, and the smell of mold and mildew was overwhelming.
Just as they began to settle in Klaus thought that maybe the stocker gave up. Klaus began to relax he saw Dante was now fast asleep as Klaus closed his eyes, a loud crash shattered his peaceful slumber Klaus could hear the stocker's voice, shouting and cursing as he searched for them just outside of the saloon. Klaus knew that the stocker was getting closer, and he had to act fast. This time he was not going to run he quickly made his way downstairs towards the racket to the bar and hid behind it, pulling Dante closely with him.
The stocker's voice grew louder as he made his way into the saloon. "I know you're in here, Klaus, I see your tracks!" he shouted. "I will kill you both!." Klaus could hear the stocker's heavy footsteps as he made his way closer to the bar.
Klaus's heart was pounding in his chest as he reached for the nearest object he could find an old dusty bottle of mead. He knew that he had to defend himself, no matter what it took. The stocker's face appeared above the bar, twisted with anger and madness. Klaus swung the bottle, hitting the stocker in the head and the stocker's body went limp falling to the floor.
Klaus didn't know what came over him, he had to hide the body, and he couldn't let anyone find out what he had done. Klaus quickly dragged the stocker's body behind the bar and hid it under old books and debris that he saw from upstairs. He knew that it wasn't a perfect solution, but it was the best he could do. Nobody had used this saloon for some time he felt confident he could keep this a secret between him and his loyal companion.
Klaus and Dante quickly made their way out of the saloon, Klaus's heart was pounding in his chest as they ran through the deserted streets. He knew that they couldn't stay in the city, he had to get as far away from the stocker as possible. Klaus knew that the nightmare was not over, but he was just glad that the stocker was dead. He had protected himself and Dante and he was alive to tell the tale.
Klaus knew that he would never forget that night, the fear and paranoia that had consumed him. He knew that he would never forget the stocker's twisted face and the feeling of the bottle as it connected with his skull. Klaus knew that he would always remember the feeling of relief when the stocker's body had finally gone still, and the weight of the books as he had covered the stocker's body, hiding it from the world. Klaus knew that he had done what he had to do to survive, but the guilt of taking a life would always stay with him.
Klaus had thought that the night would be over and he would be able to forget about the stocker and move on with his life. But, the nightmares began almost immediately. Every night, Klaus would dream of the stocker's twisted face and the feeling of the bottle as it connected with his skull. He would wake up in a cold sweat, his heart racing and his mind consumed by guilt and fear.
Klaus couldn't shake the feeling of responsibility for the stocker's death. He knew that he had done what he had to do to survive, but the guilt of taking a life was consuming him. He couldn't stand the thought of living with the weight of that guilt on his shoulders for the rest of his life.
Klaus's life became a downward spiral. He stopped going to work and stopped eating. He was consumed by the guilt of the stocker's death and the nightmares that haunted him every night.
Finally, Klaus knew that there was only one way to escape the guilt and the nightmares. He couldn't live with the weight of what he had done any longer. Klaus wrote a note explaining his actions and his guilt and left it on the table next to his bed. He took a rope and hung himself in his bedroom. Dante was the only one who was there to witness his death and he howled in sorrow.
Klaus's absence raised questions and some dockworkers went to his home to investigate. They discovered that Klaus's door was open his lovely companion was found laying underneath a hanging corpse. Initially, his death has ruled a suicide and his note was found by the authorities. The guilt of taking a life had finally consumed Klaus and he couldn't find a way to live with it. His death served as a tragic reminder of the weight of actions and the consequences that come with them.
As the authorities were investigating Klaus's death, they found some strange inconsistencies in the story. They found no trace of the stocker's body behind the bar and no evidence of a struggle or fight in the saloon.They also found that the note Klaus left behind was not in his handwriting when comparing his handwriting to the notes he kept at work which detailed shipment inventory.
As they continued their investigation, they received a tip from an anonymous source that led them to a rundown house on the outskirts of town. When they arrived, they found the stocker sitting in a rocking chair by the window, with a twisted smile on his face.
The stocker explained to the authorities that he had planned Klaus's death all along. He had been watching Klaus and Dante from the beginning, manipulating events and pushing Klaus to the brink until he was driven to take his own life. He had orchestrated the entire thing, down to the note left behind.
The stocker revealed that he had been an ex-employer of Klaus who had been fired for stealing from the company 20 years ago He had an obsession with Klaus and wanted to see him suffer. He had staged his own death and hid his body in the old saloon until Klaus had killed him, then he moved back to his house. He had been watching Klaus the entire time, enjoying his descent into madness and eventual suicide.
The authorities were shocked and horrified by the stocker's actions. They arrested him and charged him with Klaus's murder. As the stocker was led away in shackles, he couldn't help but feel a sense of satisfaction for his plan had worked and Klaus was gone. He felt that he had finally won and Klaus had lost.
Klaus's death was a tragedy and a reminder of the power of manipulation and the devastation it can cause. The stocker's actions were a chilling reminder of the darkness that can lurk in the hearts of men. Klaus and Dante's story was one of love, loyalty, and sacrifice and a cautionary tale of how far a person can be pushed by an obsession with another person.
Want to hear this story and others? Check out my Youtube channel.
Xofyerg Tales
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCd9k9oN85JEvt2gVjbq4QEg
My channel brings you the most bone-chilling, heart-stopping horror content from around the world. From classic horror tales to modern scares, I cover it all. My aim is to leave you with a lasting impression and give you the thrills you crave. Subscribe to my channel for a weekly dose of fear and be prepared to face your darkest fears. This is the ultimate destination for horror enthusiasts and thrill-seekers alike.
Follow me on instagram: u/xofyerg_Tales
submitted by Potential-Pirate-784 to scarystorieswithbb [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 19:58 Potential-Pirate-784 The Stockers Revenge The Story of Klaus Stronberg

Xofyerg Tales
51-year-old Klaus Stronberg was an exhausted dock worker, with long hair that fell around his thin, face. He lived in poverty in 19th-century London, where the cold winter nights were especially cruel. On one such evening, Klaus was at home, relaxing by the fireplace with his loyal companion, a German Shepherd named Dante. They sat together in comfortable silence, Klaus lost in a book, while Dante lay by his side, contentedly dozing.
The fire flickered and danced, casting long shadows on the walls as the wind howled outside. Klaus took a sip of his warm tea and smiled contentedly, grateful for the peacefulness of the moment. He reached down to pet Dante, who lifted his head and licked Klaus's hand affectionately. Klaus couldn't help but feel a sense of gratitude for his loyal companion, who had been by his side through so much.
But their peaceful evening was soon interrupted by a stranger, lurking and spying on them from outside. Klaus could hear the sound of footsteps crunching in the snow outside his window, and he knew that it was not just any passerby. "Who's there?" Klaus called out, trying to keep his voice steady.
"It's me, Klaus. Let me in," a twisted voice replied from outside.
Klaus's heart began to race as he realized that the stranger standing outside his door was none other than the stocker from the docks where he worked. The stocker had a notorious reputation, known for his erratic behavior and a personal grudge against Klaus. Klaus had tried to ignore him, hoping that he would eventually leave him alone, but the stocker had been relentless in his pursuit of Klaus.
As the stocker began to bang on the door and shout insults, Klaus could feel a mixture of anger and fear rising within him. The stranger's taunts grew increasingly aggressive, and Klaus knew that the stocker's twisted mind had a personal vendetta against him. Klaus tried to reason with the stocker, pleading with him to leave him alone, but the stocker's only response was maniacal laughter.
The environment around Klaus was silent and deserted, with not a soul in sight for miles. The darkness of the night enveloped him, and Klaus felt a sense of isolation and vulnerability wash over him. His dog Dante, sensing his fear, began to bark ferociously, the hairs on his back standing up as he prepared to attack.
"You think you can hide from me, Klaus? I'll find you, and I'll make you pay for what you did to me," the stocker shouted, his voice filled with rage. Klaus could see the stocker's distorted face through the peephole, twisted in anger and hatred. Klaus knew that he had to act fast, he couldn't let this man continue to torment him. He held onto Dante tightly, hoping his dog would protect him from the stocker, who seem to be getting more aggressive with each passing moment.
Klaus knew that he had to protect himself and his dog, Dante, from the stocker. He couldn't let the stocker continue to terrorize him. He went outside, Dante by his side, determined to confront the stocker. He searched the area, his eyes scanning the darkness for any sign of the stocker. But, he was nowhere to be found. Klaus felt a sense of unease, but he refused to let the stocker's taunts and threats get the best of him. He knew that he had to take control of the situation.
The neighborhood where Klaus lived was a poor one, abandoned buildings made of wood were falling apart, and rat feces littered the ground. The only source of light was from the full moon and the lantern that Klaus was carrying. The eerie shadows cast by the moonlight made the already-dilapidated buildings look even more menacing. Klaus could hear the sound of rats scurrying in the darkness and the creaking of old wooden boards beneath his feet.
As he walked around, he could feel the stocker's presence, like a dark cloud hanging over him. The stocker's rage was palpable, and Klaus could feel his madness emanating from the shadows. Klaus knew that this was his chance to finally put an end to this. He took a deep breath, trying to steady his nerves and gain enough courage to finally confront his enemy.
He called out to the stocker, his voice filled with anger and frustration, "Come out and face me, you fucking coward! I ain't afraid of you and your fucking mental issues." Klaus held Dante tightly, the dog ready to defend him if needed. Klaus's heart was pounding in his chest, but he refused to back down. He waited for the stocker's response, ready for whatever may come. The dim light of the lantern in his hand was the only source of light in the abandoned neighborhood, casting an eerie glow on the surroundings while they were looking for the stocker.
Klaus searched the area for the stocker, but he found no trace of him. The only thing he could see were footprints in the snow that eventually faded away. Klaus called out to the stocker, but there was no response. He searched for any sign of him, but it was as if he had vanished into thin air.
Klaus felt a sense of frustration and disappointment wash over him. He had been so sure that he would finally be able to confront the stocker and put an end to his torment. But, it seemed that the stocker had outsmarted him yet again.
He headed back into his home, Dante by his side. The dog seemed to have calmed down, as if sensing that the danger had passed. Klaus couldn't shake off the feeling of unease, he knew that the stocker's threat was still looming over him. But, he knew that he would have to be more prepared next time, he couldn't let the stocker continue to torment him.
He locked the door behind him and tried to shake off the chill of the night. He knew that he had to keep watch, the stocker could come back at any moment.
The wind outside howled and whistled as Klaus peered out of his window, desperately searching for any sign of the stocker. The snow was falling thickly, obscuring his vision and making it difficult for him to see more than a few feet in front of him. Klaus knew that the stocker was out there, somewhere, hiding in the shadows, waiting for the perfect opportunity to strike.
Suddenly, Dante began to growl once again. Klaus's heart skipped a beat as a loud crash against the front door startled him. He heard laughter coming from outside and realized that the stocker was back. Without hesitation, Klaus swung the door open and began searching for any sign of the stocker. He called out to him, his voice filled with anger and determination, "I know you're out there! Show yourself!"
He made his way down the deserted streets, the only sound was the crunching of the snow under his feet. Klaus could feel the stocker's presence, like a dark cloud hanging over him. The stocker's madness seemed to be emanating from the shadows, filling the air with a sense of dread. Klaus knew that he had to be on guard, he could not let the stocker catch him off guard.
As Klaus walked, he could hear the stocker's voice, taunting him with cryptic words, "You cannot escape the shadows, Klaus. They will always find you, and make you pay for your sins." Klaus's blood ran cold as the stocker's words echoed in his mind, leaving him wondering what he meant by those words. He knew that the stocker was not going to give up until he had his revenge. Klaus's heart was pounding in his chest as he made his way outside, his hand tightly gripping Dante's collar. The dog was agitated, sensing the danger that was lurking in the darkness. Klaus could feel the tension in the air, knowing he had to be careful. Klaus could hear strange sounds in the distance, like a faint whispering, he couldn't make out what they were saying but they gave him the chills. The wind was blowing fiercely, making the branches of the trees rustle and a faint howling
Klaus continued to search the streets, his heart pounding in his chest. He knew that he had to find the stocker before it was too late. He searched the nearby alleyway, but he couldn't find any sign of the stocker. The snow was falling thicker now, and Klaus could barely see a few feet in front of him.
As the night wore on, Klaus's fear and paranoia grew. He knew that the stocker was out there, somewhere, waiting for the perfect opportunity to strike. Klaus could feel the tension in the air, and he knew it was only a matter of time before the stocker's twisted plan reached its deadly conclusion. He knew that he had to find the stocker, he had to protect himself and Dante from the stocker's wrath.
Finally, Klaus heard a sound coming from an abandoned warehouse on the edge of town. He knew that it was the stocker, and he prepared himself for the final confrontation. Klaus and Dante entered the warehouse cautiously, Klaus's heart was pounding in his chest as he made his way through the dark, musty interior. He could hear the stocker's ragged breathing, and he knew that he was getting closer.
The stocker was waiting for Klaus in the shadows, his madness and anger were evident in his twisted face. Klaus could see the hatred in his eyes, and he knew that the stocker was not going to give up until he had his revenge. Klaus and Dante fought back with
Klaus and Dante both determined to defend themselves against the stocker. Klaus was a thin, middle-aged man with long hair that fell around his gaunt face. His eyes were sunken and tired, a testament to the long hours he had spent working at the docks. His clothes were worn and threadbare, but he held himself with a sense of determination.
Dante, on the other hand, was a fierce German Shepherd, with fur as black as the night. His eyes were sharp, and his muscles were coiled, ready for action. He stood by Klaus's side, growling low in his throat, ready to defend his master at all costs.
The warehouse was an eerie and abandoned place, with cobwebs hanging from the rafters and a musty smell that hung in the air. The floorboards creaked underfoot, and Klaus could feel the tension in the air. The only light came from a few flickering candles, casting long shadows on the walls.
The stocker was waiting for Klaus in the shadows, his twisted face contorted with anger and madness. His eyes were wild and filled with hatred, and his hands were clenched into fists. He was a large man, with thick, greasy hair and a thick beard. He wore a tattered coat that hung from his broad shoulders, and his boots were caked with mud.
"You can't hide from me, Klaus," the stocker spat, his voice filled with rage. "I'll find you and make you pay for what you did to me." Klaus could feel the stocker's anger and hatred, and he knew that he was not going to give up until he had his revenge.
"I don't know what you're talking about," Klaus said, trying to keep his voice steady. "I've never done anything to hurt you."
The stocker laughed, a harsh, maniacal sound that echoed through the warehouse. "You think I'm going to believe that? You think I don't know what you did? You ruined my life, Klaus, and now I'm going to ruin yours."
Klaus could see the madness in the stocker's eyes, and he knew that he had to be careful. He stepped forward, trying to keep a safe distance between himself and the stocker. "I'm warning you, stay away from me and my dog," Klaus said, his voice filled with a sense of determination.
The stocker's face twisted into a sneer. "Or what? You think you can stop me? I'll show you who's in charge here."
With that, the stocker lunged at Klaus, his hands reaching for his throat. Klaus was quick to react, sidestepping the stocker's attack and striking him with a swift punch to the face. The stocker stumbled back, his nose bleeding and his eyes filled with rage.
Dante, sensing the danger, lunged at the stocker, biting him on the arm and pulling him back. The stocker howled in pain and fury, but Klaus was able to strike him again, knocking him unconscious.
Klaus and Dante were both breathing hard, their hearts pounding in their chests.
Klaus and Dante were both relieved that the stocker was finally unconscious, but they knew that their fight was far from over. Klaus's knuckles were bruised and bleeding from the punches he had thrown and Dante had a few cuts and bite marks on his arm from the fight.
Klaus's emotions were running high, a mix of fear, anger, and relief. He couldn't believe that he had been forced to defend himself against such a twisted and violent individual. He felt a sense of disgust towards the stocker and a sense of gratitude towards Dante for his bravery.
The stocker was still unconscious, but Klaus could see the anger and hatred contorting his face even in his state. Klaus knew that the stocker was not going to give up, he would be back, and Klaus had to be ready for him. Klaus knew that he had to find a way to protect himself and Dante from the stocker's wrath.
Klaus knew that he couldn't stay in the warehouse, he had to get out before the stocker woke up. Klaus grabbed Dante by the collar and quickly made his way out of the warehouse. The snow was falling thickly now, and Klaus could barely see a few feet in front of him.
As they walked, Klaus could feel the stocker's presence, like a dark cloud hanging over him. He knew that the stocker was not going to give up until he had his revenge. Klaus's heart was pounding in his chest as he made his way through the deserted streets, the only sound was the crunching of the snow under his feet.
Klaus knew that he had to find a safe place to hide, he couldn't stay out on the streets. The cold was affecting Dante. Dante was now limping and shaking from the cold. The snow was now up to his calve. He had to find shelter. He made his way to an old saloon that had been closed for many years on the edge of town. Klaus knew that it was too dangerous to wander the streets any longer, it was the only place that could provide decent shelter from the weather.
As they entered the building, Klaus couldn’t help but feel that he had not escaped. He knew that the stocker was not far behind, and he had to be ready for him. Klaus and Dante made their way to the top floor, and Klaus barricaded the door with whatever he could find. Klaus knew that it wouldn't hold the stocker for long, but it would buy him some time.
Klaus sat down against the door, his heart still pounding in his chest. He knew it was only a matter of time before the stocker found them. Klaus was determined to protect himself and Dante, no matter what it took. He knew that the night was going to be a long one, and he braced himself for what was to come.
The place was run-down, with worn baseboards and peeling wallpaper. The floorboards creaked underfoot, and Klaus could feel the dampness in the air. The webs consumed the walls, and the smell of mold and mildew was overwhelming.
Just as they began to settle in Klaus thought that maybe the stocker gave up. Klaus began to relax he saw Dante was now fast asleep as Klaus closed his eyes, a loud crash shattered his peaceful slumber Klaus could hear the stocker's voice, shouting and cursing as he searched for them just outside of the saloon. Klaus knew that the stocker was getting closer, and he had to act fast. This time he was not going to run he quickly made his way downstairs towards the racket to the bar and hid behind it, pulling Dante closely with him.
The stocker's voice grew louder as he made his way into the saloon. "I know you're in here, Klaus, I see your tracks!" he shouted. "I will kill you both!." Klaus could hear the stocker's heavy footsteps as he made his way closer to the bar.
Klaus's heart was pounding in his chest as he reached for the nearest object he could find an old dusty bottle of mead. He knew that he had to defend himself, no matter what it took. The stocker's face appeared above the bar, twisted with anger and madness. Klaus swung the bottle, hitting the stocker in the head and the stocker's body went limp falling to the floor.
Klaus didn't know what came over him, he had to hide the body, and he couldn't let anyone find out what he had done. Klaus quickly dragged the stocker's body behind the bar and hid it under old books and debris that he saw from upstairs. He knew that it wasn't a perfect solution, but it was the best he could do. Nobody had used this saloon for some time he felt confident he could keep this a secret between him and his loyal companion.
Klaus and Dante quickly made their way out of the saloon, Klaus's heart was pounding in his chest as they ran through the deserted streets. He knew that they couldn't stay in the city, he had to get as far away from the stocker as possible. Klaus knew that the nightmare was not over, but he was just glad that the stocker was dead. He had protected himself and Dante and he was alive to tell the tale.
Klaus knew that he would never forget that night, the fear and paranoia that had consumed him. He knew that he would never forget the stocker's twisted face and the feeling of the bottle as it connected with his skull. Klaus knew that he would always remember the feeling of relief when the stocker's body had finally gone still, and the weight of the books as he had covered the stocker's body, hiding it from the world. Klaus knew that he had done what he had to do to survive, but the guilt of taking a life would always stay with him.
Klaus had thought that the night would be over and he would be able to forget about the stocker and move on with his life. But, the nightmares began almost immediately. Every night, Klaus would dream of the stocker's twisted face and the feeling of the bottle as it connected with his skull. He would wake up in a cold sweat, his heart racing and his mind consumed by guilt and fear.
Klaus couldn't shake the feeling of responsibility for the stocker's death. He knew that he had done what he had to do to survive, but the guilt of taking a life was consuming him. He couldn't stand the thought of living with the weight of that guilt on his shoulders for the rest of his life.
Klaus's life became a downward spiral. He stopped going to work and stopped eating. He was consumed by the guilt of the stocker's death and the nightmares that haunted him every night.
Finally, Klaus knew that there was only one way to escape the guilt and the nightmares. He couldn't live with the weight of what he had done any longer. Klaus wrote a note explaining his actions and his guilt and left it on the table next to his bed. He took a rope and hung himself in his bedroom. Dante was the only one who was there to witness his death and he howled in sorrow.
Klaus's absence raised questions and some dockworkers went to his home to investigate. They discovered that Klaus's door was open his lovely companion was found laying underneath a hanging corpse. Initially, his death has ruled a suicide and his note was found by the authorities. The guilt of taking a life had finally consumed Klaus and he couldn't find a way to live with it. His death served as a tragic reminder of the weight of actions and the consequences that come with them.
As the authorities were investigating Klaus's death, they found some strange inconsistencies in the story. They found no trace of the stocker's body behind the bar and no evidence of a struggle or fight in the saloon.They also found that the note Klaus left behind was not in his handwriting when comparing his handwriting to the notes he kept at work which detailed shipment inventory.
As they continued their investigation, they received a tip from an anonymous source that led them to a rundown house on the outskirts of town. When they arrived, they found the stocker sitting in a rocking chair by the window, with a twisted smile on his face.
The stocker explained to the authorities that he had planned Klaus's death all along. He had been watching Klaus and Dante from the beginning, manipulating events and pushing Klaus to the brink until he was driven to take his own life. He had orchestrated the entire thing, down to the note left behind.
The stocker revealed that he had been an ex-employer of Klaus who had been fired for stealing from the company 20 years ago He had an obsession with Klaus and wanted to see him suffer. He had staged his own death and hid his body in the old saloon until Klaus had killed him, then he moved back to his house. He had been watching Klaus the entire time, enjoying his descent into madness and eventual suicide.
The authorities were shocked and horrified by the stocker's actions. They arrested him and charged him with Klaus's murder. As the stocker was led away in shackles, he couldn't help but feel a sense of satisfaction for his plan had worked and Klaus was gone. He felt that he had finally won and Klaus had lost.
Klaus's death was a tragedy and a reminder of the power of manipulation and the devastation it can cause. The stocker's actions were a chilling reminder of the darkness that can lurk in the hearts of men. Klaus and Dante's story was one of love, loyalty, and sacrifice and a cautionary tale of how far a person can be pushed by an obsession with another person.
Want to hear this story and others? Check out my Youtube channel.
Xofyerg Tales
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCd9k9oN85JEvt2gVjbq4QEg
My channel brings you the most bone-chilling, heart-stopping horror content from around the world. From classic horror tales to modern scares, I cover it all. My aim is to leave you with a lasting impression and give you the thrills you crave. Subscribe to my channel for a weekly dose of fear and be prepared to face your darkest fears. This is the ultimate destination for horror enthusiasts and thrill-seekers alike.
Follow me on instagram: u/xofyerg_Tales
submitted by Potential-Pirate-784 to scarystories [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 19:46 ConnerWithTheBigData Contemporary Applications of Big Data in Society

Big data has developed into a potent weapon for reshaping contemporary culture. It helps people in many different fields make educated decisions, enhance workflows, and resolve challenging issues. Here are a few instances of big data's current use in modern society:

  1. Urban Planning: Big data is being used to improve the planning and development of cities. By examining vast volumes of information regarding population growth, economic activity, and traffic patterns, it aids urban planners in making wise decisions about land use, transportation, and infrastructure. This data can be utilised to spot problems and implement improvements that will better serve the requirements of the populace.
  2. Public Health: Big data is being used to improve public health by tracking and analysing outbreaks of infectious diseases, analysing population health trends and identifying risk factors. Public health professionals utilise this data to create and put into practise efficient disease control and preventive policies as well as to distribute resources where they are most needed.
  3. Disaster Response: In the event of a natural disaster or emergency situation, big data can play a critical role in the response effort. It may be used to monitor the flow of people, materials, and supplies as well as to swiftly determine the severity of the damage and the need of the impacted areas. The correct resources can be made accessible in the right location at the right time with the help of this information, which can also be utilised to direct rescue and relief operations.
  4. Law enforcement: To combat crime and uphold public safety, law enforcement organisations are also utilising big data. Law enforcement is able to find patterns, trace suspects, and keep an eye on criminal activities by analysing vast volumes of data from numerous sources, including surveillance cameras, social media, and crime reports. It is possible to use this knowledge to allocate resources wisely, stop crimes from occurring, and prosecute offenders.
In conclusion, Big data is being utilised to inform decisions, enhance workflows, and make the world safer and more effective in a variety of fields, including urban planning, public health, disaster response, and law enforcement.
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2023.02.02 19:17 hammtweezy2192 Enjoy all the graphical modes on your Xbox or any console with these tips.

It may be apparent to many console gamers by now that there will be multiple options in most games in regards to what type of performance they wish to play at. Most of the time a 60 fps performance mode sacrifices resolution and few graphical settings lowered to reach the target. The other option is often a "quality", "resolution", or "Ray Tracing" mode that usually locks to 30 fps in most titles. Here are some tips that will allow most gamers to successfully switch between 60 and 30 fps titles and still enjoy a smooth experience.
  1. If switching directly between a 60 and 30 fps mode the experience will be jarring to your eyes and brain at first. Be patient and give yourself time to adjust, it will smooth out over a 5-10 minute time span.
  2. Leave motion blur on for 30 fps titles. This helps blend the frames together creating a smoother panning experience. In some games it may be too strong however so adjust accordingly.
  3. This one works great! On the same display you will be playing the game, pull up a video of 20 fps gameplay. Try to find a third person game if that's what you're playing or first person. Watch the fire a few minutes, then turn your 30 fps game on. The game feels instantly smoother.
4 . Lastly, and this one may be harder for some given aiming sensitivity. Turn up the sensitivity/speed of your X axis look controls. Med speed panning shots can sometimes show judder at 30 fps, but if your panning speed is increased you won't notice it.
Good luck everyone and enjoy gaming how you wish to play. I play many many games at 120hz, 60hz, and 30hz without degradation in my experience using these methods. As a console gamer we are going to have to accept some games will continue to be 30 fps and these tips will help you make the best experience possible.
submitted by hammtweezy2192 to XboxSeriesX [link] [comments]