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This prompt is always open. Rule 34 is pretty much the best. There’s so many interesting character designs and personalities across so many forms of media, and pretty much everyone has a few fictional crushes. This prompt set is for people who are connoisseurs of digital eye candy. I’m over 18, and expect all applicants to be the same. I also expect all involved characters to be over the age of eighteen, so canon will have to be shifted on a case-by-case basis. Each of my prompts that deal with characters who are canonically underage includes a brief adjustment the setting to make as much sense as possible while still maintaining close approximations of context-- high school students become university students, etcetera. Here’s my kinklist, to get it on the table early. Nothing on there is an absolute must, and there’s a whole lotta ‘like’ and ‘favorite’. A lot of my prompts below are leaning more towards vanilla than hard kinks, but that’s for accessibility. If you like to get freaky, seriously, take a look at the kinklist. I probably like something that you also do, even if you don’t see it in a prompt. Let me know, we can discuss it. First up, the prompt ideas themselves. These are general ideas that can be adjusted and discussed. I’m also open to much more, really; please feel free to suggest and I will always entertain and respond. Canon-(ish) (preferred): We stay inside the lore and universe of the game. Whether this is a canon romance happening, an OC hooking up with a canon character, a branch off where two characters who didn’t hook up in the source material end up as an item, or a bad end that shows what happens to the hero(es) after failing in their quest… it takes place in the universe the characters are familiar with. Almost all of the prompt suggestions below fit this bill. Please note that SPOILERS will be in some of my suggestions, and thus I’ve chosen to hide them behind a spoiler tag to make sure I don’t ruin the games/anime for anyone. Modern AU: The characters from the in-universe end up in, well, ours. Whether through a portal, or just adjusting their world so that it happens in ours, the character or characters of our story live in the world we know and love. They go to restaurants and movies, hit up bars, use Tinder… whatever normal, well-adjusted people in this world do. Cosplayer: A girl who really likes the design and/or personality of a character tries going as them to a convention. This leads to lots of attention from lots of guys, at least one of whom she ends up interested in enough to play around with. Next, the fandoms that I’m actively interested in, alphabetized because I’m a madman. I’m gradually adding examples of in-universe ideas for each and adding fandoms as I go, and I’d be happy to play out those examples if someone is interested, but otherwise they’re just suggestions to outline the kind of scenes I have in mind. Some of them are sweet, romantic endeavors between characters both established and original. Some of them are significantly more hardcore. I’m pretty down for either, to be honest. They’re just a sample of some of my ideas,so you know I'm actually serious. You might notice that some of them are F4F-- I'm totally down for playing a girl or futa alongside another girl or futa. Please note that both of the below lists are far from complete. If there’s something rule 34 that you’re interested in playing, let me know. Adding to my pool of prompts is always fun. If I know the source material well enough that I could even decently pull it off, I’m sure we can arrange something.
Alkaid: Takes place in a setting where both Haseo and Alkaid’s players are eighteen, so all of the events of Roots occurred two years later in life and both are college students. Chika Kuramoto spent several months in a coma, struck down by an AIDA-infected Bourdeaux. When she makes her return to The World, she’s shocked to find Haseo a changed man-- one who hugs her and shows much more blatant affection. Another one of my rare tsundere prompts, likely a cuter one.
Pi: Takes place in a setting where Haseo is 18, so all of the events of Roots occurred when he was a couple of years older and he’s in college. The dynamic between Haseo and Pi has always been argumentative at best, strained at worst. When some sharp comments about her body in-game probably being ‘way hotter’ than how she looks in real life, Haseo’s e-mail gets a few pictures from Reiko Saeki that make his jaw drop-- and a digital affair is born.
Madeline/Badeline: Setting-shift where Madeline is 18 when she climbs The Mountain. After reaching the summit, she reflects with her other self about what they’ve accomplished together. An embrace shared between Madeline and her insecurities results in an unexpected kiss, and things escalate from there. Gravity play, as well as some of the more monstrous and intriguing parts of Badeline’s appearances (like clones), are encouraged. Futa Badeline, too. I can play either Madeline or Badeline.
DR1 Mukuro: Takes place in a setting where the Class of Hope held out an extra two years before getting their memory wiped-- making them all eighteen. Instead of getting skewered right out the gate by Monokuma, ‘Junko’ is saved by Makoto Naegi-- the boy she’d always harbored more than a few feelings for. Spurred on by his bravery, she decides to tell him the truth, and the two face down the new Killing Game together. I actually commissioned art for this specific scenario, if you like the idea and want to see it, just let me know.
DR1 Sayaka: Takes place in a setting where the Class of Hope held out an extra two years before getting their memory wiped-- making them all eighteen. Makoto is too kind, too good for her-- Sayaka knows that. She knows that she’s about to try and kill someone-- pin it on Makoto, even-- to sacrifice the rest of the Hope’s Peak students and try to make it out alive. But in the final moments before her plan, Makoto knocks on the door to his room, the one she’s staying in, and her wavering will breaks. She confesses everything to him and begs him for a solution, some path to follow, and he tells her to follow him. An impromptu, somewhat silly sweet hard dom/sub relationship blossoms from there. I see Sayaka as very much a follower in this case.
I actually have an entire post full of prompts for this, located here. If you want something that isn’t in that, let me know.
Devil May Cry
DMC5 Lady: After catching a slime-covered, groggy femme fatale from the shell of Artemis, Nero can't help but let his eyes wander. Lady certainly doesn't mind the attention. Wandering eyes become wandering hands, and the pair have a secret tryst on the chapel floor.
DMC3 Lady: At the top of Temen-ni-gru, Lady is given a chance to end her father’s miserable existence… but she hesitates. In her moment of weakness, Arkham stands up and disarms her, then shows his sweet Mary just how powerless a human really is. Incest, rape, and much darker themes cover the core of this prompt.
Doki Doki Literature Club
Monika: Takes place in a setting where the literature club is a college extracurricular club, not high school. Meta style RP where it's played like Monika is using the computer to communicate. This one will have to be creative, some comp sci knowledge is recommended. Deleting files, editing parameters, changing the game up, maybe even including VR… The world has infinite potential to make Monika into what she should be to give her only friend happiness.
Yuri: Takes place in a setting where it's a college club, not a high school. Yuri desperately needs someone to acknowledge her for who she is, the pain she's in, the addictive cycle of self harm. A hurt/comfort story with a yandere, some obsession elements, the like.
Tactics Agrias Oaks: Lavian and Alicia have known for ages that their commander has the biggest crush on Ramza Beoulve, but Agrias insists that Ramza does not see her as a woman. So they prove her wrong… by setting up a ‘chance encounter’ between Agrias and Ramza at the bath, and stealing away Agrias’ clothes. Some ENF (embarrassed nude female), some teasing, and probably some fluff.
FF12 Fran: Vaan is utterly hopeless with women. Even after finishing their adventure and becoming a sky pirate with Penelo, he still hasn’t figured out how to work through his feelings with the blonde. Balthier makes a comment on it and Frand decides to step in with a little bit of a guiding hand… well, claw, Viera fingers can get scary. Open to making this a futa x male prompt, as well, with light femdom, but I don’t see her being particularly cruel.
Three Houses Marianne: Post timeskip for ages sake. Byleth sees that she's struggling to keep her head up. She isn't in his class, but he sees her potential and wants to help her. Hurt/Comfort style romance, with a lot of emphasis on gentle male dom.
Three Houses Marianne: Post timeskip for ages sake. Her low self esteem makes her a pretty easy target for the bullies of Garreg Mach. After enough insulting, debasing, calling her a beast, she starts to believe it. Humiliation play, dubious consent, and verbal abuse.
Path of Radiance Titania: Ike isn’t Greil. Titania knows that. But after her leader’s death, when his son stands up to take the reins and guide the Greil Mercenaries through the treacherous countryside, there’s no mistaking it-- he’s walking the same path as his father, and walking it proudly. Shameful attraction to someone much younger than her leads to a conversation she might regret… or might not, given how happily Ike takes a chance to confide in her.
Lilly: Takes place in a setting where Yamaku is a college, not a high school. After getting more than a little tipsy during Hanako’s birthday party, Lilly Satou cannot help showing her boyfriend affection. And then a little more. And then a lot more. It’s a good thing she can’t see that Hanako is only pretending to be asleep, and that Hisao doesn’t mind letting the more nervous girl watch.
Miki: Takes place in a setting where Yamaku is a college, not a high school. When running with Emi, Miki steps in and points out that Hisao is about to collapse. Emi and Miki fight, and it shows Hisao that Emi isn’t going to take his condition seriously-- so he changes running partners. This would be as much storytelling and fluff as it would be smut, forewarning.
Legend of Zelda
Hyrule Warriors Cia: All she ever wanted was the Hero to love her. If he were to meet her on the battlefield and hold out his hand… how might fate have changed? A prompt centered around an insanely powerful, dominating yandere who melts like butter and offers her everything to her hero.
Ocarina of Time Malon: Life was not kind to Malon when the Dark Lord took over. Inigo took the ranch, her father abandoned her, and she was forced to do all of the labor that taking care of the livestock required in addition to serving Inigo. When Link comes, she’s willing to do anything for the chance at hope. And after spending some time with her in the barn, he forces Inigo out to take his place as Malon’s master.
World Handler: What exactly does The Handler get up to when her Sapphire Star is out on a quest? Sure, blowing her partner to make sure he hunts with a level head is fun and all, but a girl gets bored. Good thing there’s all those weak Jagras… and felynes… and occasionally a bigger beasty to keep her occupied.
World Third Fleet Master: Everything the Wyverian leader does is… Whimsical. She says what she wants to. Smokes what she wants to. Fucks what she wants to. A role play centered on the blue haired, practically no limits master who's taken a special interest in the Sapphire Star.
Automata A2: A mechanic in the Resistance camp takes interest in her, and starts to chat her up. It takes an ice pick to get through the wall around her heart, but he's got a good eye for it; this would likely be a slow burn where he meddles in her affairs to make sure she's looked after until she finally lowers her guard enough to talk with him.
Automata A2: One of the robots she's trying to kill manages to disable her arm. Then one of her legs. Then her other arm. The proud ex YoRHa is forced to helplessly struggle with little agency as she's rutted by something mechanical and, in her eyes, unfeeling.
Dancer Ophelia: Grinding for experience goes so much better with two dancers, so Primrose needs a secondary. Humiliation, corruption, and meta humor commentary about how scantily clad women make for better dancers abound. The cleric never knew how good it would feel to have so many eyes on her, transfixed by simply swaying her hips. Possibly a yuri prompt with Primrose, possibly a straight prompt with Ophelia and an enemy or ally, possibly a bad end prompt with a monster or bandit.
Mercy/Angela Ziegler: Healslutting shouldn't push the doctor's buttons like this. But when McCree comes limping in and asks for a hand, or Reaper puts a gun to her head and demands she patch him up, she just wants to… get on her knees while she does her job. Can play this in universe, or meta, where your character plays healer for mine.
Sombra: Open to suggestions, I just think she doesn't get enough appreciation.
P5 Makoto: Takes place in a setting where Joker and the rest of the gang are all in Makoto's class, and all are eighteen year old seniors. Her fake date with Akira to impress Eiko brought out some feelings she doesn't know how to deal with, so Makoto asks him for advice. He takes her to his room, and helps her put it into words. Cute, fluffy, awkward teen romance.
P5 Makoto: Takes place in a setting where Joker and the rest of the gang are all in Makoto's class, and all are eighteen year old seniors. Unable to change Kaneshiro's heart in time, Makoto and her sister are forced into prostitution. Joker might even be a secret customer. Humiliation, mind break, abuse, prostitution, drugs, all that jazz.
P5 Makoto: Takes place in a setting where Joker and the rest of the gang are all in Makoto's class, and all are eighteen year old seniors. Makoto has practically no experience with dating, and Akira gets to set the tone of their relationship. It doesn't take long before her coming around Leblanc for hangouts with her boyfriend becomes undressing down to her underwear as soon as she enters the attic. Discussing strategy, studying together, or just talking as friends and accomplices is done with a side helping of making out or worse. It doesn't take long for their relationship to devolve into a free use arrangement where the inexperienced Niijima sister trusts Akira to do whatever he'd like to her, whenever he'd like.
P5 Kawakami: I have a whole prompt based around this, located here
Generic Trainer: A series of scenelets that follow one ADULT trainer girl, if you want to play banging all kinds of people or pokemon, or one ADULT trainer boy, if you want to be all the girls and pokemon he nails on his journey. This one would cover a lot of kinks, since there's a pokemon for practically everything.
Shantae (obviously): There are a lot of perks to having a half-genie lover-- whether it’s willing, or because she’s captured, is up for debate. But anything involving Shantae would probably feature transformation, mild wish granting without going too crazy overboard, and a fairly ditzy female lead. Monstergirls abound, and bonus if you’re interested in a more switchy Shantae, as opposed to a purely submissive or dominant one.
Giga Mermaid: Giant mermaid play with… a submissive giant mermaid? It takes a little bit of electroshock therapy, a lot of heavy chains, and a fair amount of coercion, but Giga Mermaid makes for a wonderful lover if you can get past how much effort it takes to tame her. Slave play, massive size differences, some torture and maybe Stockholm.
Valentine: When stopping in a convenience store for medical supplies in a jam, Valentine comes face to face with a clerk who notes how authentic her mask and outfit look, like a real life evil nurse. She pulls her mask off, revealing her scars, and instead of recoiling in fear he shows interest in her. That sparks an interest in Valentine. Whether that interest results in the guy pulling Valentine back to a better life or Valentine convincing him to join her in making Painwheel suffer is anyone’s guess.
Various: I actually have an entire post full of prompts for this, located here. If you want something that isn’t in that, let me know.
Tales series (Tales of Vesperia, Tales of the Abyss, etc)
Tales of Symphonia Sheena: To become the successor of Mizuho, Sheena must marry. And there aren’t very many willing ninja, considering her reputation in the village. When one offers, she has little choice but to accept. Whether she’s treated as a trophy wife to take the position of village chief, or her arranged marriage partner becomes someone she loves, is dependent on the story.
Tales of the Abyss Tear: It took a long time for Luke to return home after the battle in Eldrant. “I’ll be waiting… always.” Tear Grants made a promise that she honored every day since leaving her closest ally behind, and she honored it every day since. Now that she finally has him in front of her, in the fields of Tataroo Valley, the collected soldier’s words fail her.
Tales of Xillia Muzet: >!!<
Ancient Magus Bride
Silver Lady: Sometimes, it really seems like Chise and Elias are in their own little world. Most days, the Silver Lady doesn’t mind, so long as she’s able to be of service to the young Sleigh Beggy, but occasionally the house gets lonely with just her. At least she has Ruth to keep her company. And, well… he’s not one to give away secrets, and she never speaks, so if they find some company in each other, nobody would be any the wiser. Victorian dresses and knots make for a fun combination, but this is definitely a bestiality prompt.
Stay/Night Medusa (Rider): Takes place in a setting where Shirou and co. are college freshmen. Rider ends up as Shirou's partner instead of Artoria, and they form a bond together that results in a lot of trust. Gentle femdom into sweet power dynamic switching.
Stay/Night Medusa (Rider): Takes place in a setting where Shirou and co. are college freshmen. Rider's terrible Master Shinji sets her to fight Berserker. She loses. Badly. A rough rape scene with size differences as a key focus, and no mercy or conversation from the male.
Apocrypha Mordred: Her Master, Kairi, gets drunk with her and they laugh together, talk shit together, share a smoke, and fuck in the grass under the stars. Silly, bantering conversations, a bit of horseplay, and casual sex with no strings attached. At least, initially.
Apocrypha Mordred: A bet with Astolfo goes awry and she has to be his bitch for a day. Teasing, flipping the roles with how cute Astolfo looks in a dress. Cross dressing and pet play, too.
Riza Hawkeye: Takes place in a setting where Ed didn't get his Alchemist license until 15 instead of 12, with three extra years of training under Izumi. This places him and Winry at 18 when the story begins. Ed needs a little bit of guiding when it comes to women. Riza makes it exceptionally clear that what they get up to should be viewed as sexual education only, because she has a fondness for Winry and doesn’t want the girl’s eventual first time be disappointing. Light femdom, some dry humor, and older women with inexperienced guys are the order of the day.
Darkness: A true masochist doesn’t back down even when in absolute agony. After marrying Kazuma to avoid a political marriage determined by her father, Lalatina will experience an absolute nightmare of abuse… Or her wet dream. From derogatory language to a branding iron and everything between, Kazuma will find out what makes the Crusader tick.
Wiz: A clumsy lich has a bad habit of doing things like forgetting to put on her robe before setting up shop, or spilling a potion on herself that affects her libido, or touching a cursed object that makes her fall madly in love with the next man she sees. Basically, Wiz is too sweet and gentle for her own good, and the end result is debauchery.
My Next Life as a Villainess
Anne: Takes place in a setting where the magic academy is a college that starts at 18. Anne never expected Katarina to become… a good woman. But now that she has, Anne can't help the infatuation that flutters in her heart when the girl who used to treat her so cruelly looks to her like a mother instead. If Anne could only have a small piece of her ward's attention…
Mary Hunt: Obsessive over her closest friend, Mary no longer cares for the consequences. Prince Alan, Geordo, the rest of the world be damned, she’s telling Katarina how she feels. Passionate yuri fun, possibly with exhibitionism, maybe with futanari. Basically a sex prompt with little plot attached, kinks negotiable.
Ouran Host Club
I genuinely can't think of any prompts for this one, but I'm open to suggestions. Obviously, it would need to be a college host club, not a high school one
Rem: What if Subaru never said 'I love Emilia'? What if he'd accepted Rem's feelings wholesale? There's a whole If story about it, but that If story doesn't include Rem using her oni strength to make Subaru empty his balls in her until he's absolutely exhausted, that night, right in that inn. We can fix that, though.
Faris: Stuck in a timeline where Faris is his girlfriend, Okabe takes comfort in knowing his friends are okay and CERN will not get their hands on time travel. Now he has to learn how to date a goofy, bantering, playful kitty maid, with time travel put behind him. An extension of the Faris ending.
Kurisu: Teasing between Okabe and Kurisu about what boards they go on and the content of said boards goes awry. Expect memes, some internet culture, references to 4chan, and questions about time travel. One of my fairly rare tsundere prompts! Probably equally fluffy and smutty.
That Time I was Reincarnated as a Slime
Shion: Unsatisfied with accepting Rimuru’s strength outright, Shion challenges him to a public wrestling match. He agrees, on the condition that she lose an article of clothing if he wins. Rematch, after rematch, Shion’s clothes are stripped away, but her dignity refuses to bend so long as she still has even the slightest chance. Until she has nothing left to take off, and Rimuru makes an alternative bet. Slime sex, exhibition, and potentially transforming into different creatures mid-round are some high notes for this one.
Rimuru: With a human body that’s as androgynous as it is cute, and the total respect of all the village--country-- of Tempest, the helpful little super-slime could have any partner he chooses. So who does he choose? A Goblina? Ranga, his canine companion? Transformation, gender bending, and the like would all be good choices for this prompt.
I prefer about two paras per post, ish, but I can adjust-- typically no less than one para and no more than three on the average. I play on Discord primarily, but Reddit PMs are fine if that’s more comfortable for you. Let me know if you’re interested, I try to reply to every message I get. Thank you for reading, hope you see something you like!
Anybody have a partner in crime? Any actually happy? I always read about how horrible we are or how sad some of us are or how it’s because we always have to mask and I just can’t relate tbh. One day me and my fiancé were chillin in the kitchen psychoanalyzing a girl we were dating (polyamorous). We both love psychology and I told him I’d never give him my honest analysis of him but he pushed. The long and short of it I told him he has a god complex, he thinks he’s above everyone, he does things because they look good, and that he’s a beastie (what I call us) and I know because I’m a beastie too and he can drop the person suit. He told me I was right and said he knew I was. We agreed not to use our tactics against each other and decided to instead do it together because why tf not? 😂 So we don’t fuck with ppl per se but we do enjoy poking around ppls minds and analyzing them and making them feel like shit about it while simultaneously encouraging them to seek help if they want to be like us which is generally better than most ppl if you look at us on paper. Our friends are more like our pets and case studies that we like to influence just to see what happens. We always try to push them to do good things and do good things ourselves because moral superiority be like. Sometimes we will find that one of our friends is a lot like us so we reveal ourselves a little and we will try to mold them so they don’t become failures. So I guess I’m just wondering if any other ppl have somebody they don’t have to mask or wear a person suit with and if they’re happy? 🤔
2020.08.29 08:07 FluffyWolf2UG Infect - Aggro, Control, Tempo, and Combo - Can it all be in one deck?
TLDR: If you are the most versed player of Infect, by all means, carry on with your lovely Reddit browsing today, and there is no need for my mediocre comments. If you'd like to just read and enjoy our view as fresh eyes into the archetype, carry on! This is an expression of interest in the deck, with a focus on my perspective as is necessary to broaden your horizons in the magic meta-community. So, if you'd like to join me in this brain dump... read on!
“Wisdom is not the counting of all the drops in a waterfall. Wisdom is learning why the water seeks the earth.”[[Counsel of the Soratami]]
As an avid Red Prison player, [[Chalice of the Voide]], [[Blood Moon]], and [[Ensnaring Bridge]], eat Infect alive, quite literally. It could simply be the 'easiest' matchup for the archetype. This sole fact would be singular looking though to claim then, that because a deck I play trounces another deck, that the other deck is then inherently 'bad.' This is the same nomenclature utilized that "Burn is dumb you count to 20", "Tron takes no brains, you get 3 lands and get 7 mana", "Control has no decisions, you either counter or pass." You've heard them all, you know them well, and many that their deck is the hallmark of one of these slogans may set you on edge, and I'd tell you this; Don't let it. This is in some regards a misunderstanding of your deck, so... did we misunderstand Infect? Absolutely not! Have you ever not died to infect by strictly damage because you felt your life total was impenetrable and you fetched, shocked, thoughtseized, and what have you to then see the most [[Noble Hierarch]] turn into a beasty bash that ended your game? Infect, a deck which can either Poison you out, or end you with a mana dork. Let's get into the core.
Deck Construction Establishments
The deck is simple at its core. Mana Dorks, Pump Spells, Infect Creatures, and Protection.
[[Glistener Elf]] & [[Blighted Agent]] - Your cornerstone creatures. The ones with infect. The ones you want, the ones that win.
[[Noble Hierarch]] - Exalted allows for a pump, and the extra mana pushes your spells across the finish line.
[[Inkmoth Nexus]] - The quirky inclusion, creature no less, but requires animation. This coupled with evasion of both Nexus and Agent can be enough to just widdle away the game.
When the meek charge into battle, courage becomes infectious. [[Aven Squire]]
[[Blooming Defense]] & [[Apostle's Blessing]] - Protective Spells, used sparingly and when your win condition may be removed.
[[Scale Up]] - The notable huge pump, 6/4 creature you say? Exalted trigger!? We're but a bolt away from lethal... well... sorta!
[[Might of Old Krosa]] & [[Groundswell]] - Your major pumping spells.
[[Mutagenic Growth]] - Minor Pumping Spells
[[Distortion Strike]] & [[Vines of Vastwood]] - A bit more utility, they have pump in them but are your more passive pump spells.
Everyone will look at these cards differently. [[Spellskite]] is usually an include, including the decklist above, but is not mentioned here. Some will characterize Vines as a pump spell, some just straight protection. How you perceive these cards, is how you approach this deck. You could find that pinging an opponent for 1-2 each turn, and hardly ever pumping maybe your out, and in fact, you may be completely right against Burn, where now every pump spell turns into a saving grace from a bolt. This with practice will actually allow you to play the game on both sides, not just on the infect side.
Perception Defines the Evolution and What Archetype Infect is - What is yours?
Just as a changeling’s influence can have dramatic effects, so too can its sudden withdrawal. [[Nameless Inversion]]
If you've read my posts you may simply read for the flavor text reminds and a good laugh or smile of memories of a card. Nameless Inversion actually points out something that is probably the most important thing I found while playing, and I wish to share - This goes for playing against, but also playing with UG Infect. Infect balances between the aggression, the pump everything, slam in, win on Turn 3 or even Turn 2! Versus the flip side, the painful slow infectious pain of ping... ping... ping... ping... ping, results in a clear definitive path to victory, with little more than perhaps a 2 CMC creature winning your vicotry or sealing your decay. While playing the deck, there is also an edge to it. There is a fearless nature, it is actually why I've quoted [[Aven Squire]] for those that are paying attention. You'll even see it in the video if you watch, there is a decision point where you must accept there is no other path, and you're all in chips in the middle, the money down on the table, and the cards flip over, did you win? There is a rush associated with the balance of "Did you have enough" and the fragility of your win condition could be plucked off as the final points were almost there. I'd attribute it to Bolt off the Top!? the calls for Top Deck One Time! and the mechanic Miracle! And that my friend... is addictive.
Title Question and Title Answer - Can all types be in Infect?
The definitive answer, is likely no after all the combination of all elements in a deck strictly prohibits a cohesive nature to your deck, and although yes I may run a 250 Battle of Witts deck and claim victoriously that I have indeed smashed every archetype known to magic into one, this simply is not the case for Infect. I can say though if you have an affinity for keeping a single creature alive, love beat down strategies, enjoy a good blow out, and enjoy from time to time meticulous sculpting of the game to where you may either be tempting or in fact controlling the steps forward, you may just get all the archetypes here, if you're okay with the definition of some of these to be... more flexible then "Control is Counter" and "Aggro is Smash!" But we're Mages, after all, not some Borboygmos!
2020.08.20 06:35 spinster84Does a coworker like me?
[UPDATE] He asked me what I’m doing this weekend once we were alone in the office. We’re going hiking Sunday. Yay! Throw away account because I (36F) feel silly even asking this and analyzing little things. Sorry for the long post. I’m not new to dating by any means but definitely rusty. I’ve taken a serious break from dating for almost a year to focus on myself. I started a new job and there are only two other people that work in the office regularly right now. Others pop in time to time throughout the day. (We are all wearing masks, sanitizing common areas after each use and keeping lots of space between each other.) One of them is really cute and really nice (M35ish). I felt instant chemistry the first time we met which has not happened in a LONG time. He’s pretty quiet and doesn’t really talk to anyone but he found small ways to talk to me right away. Like telling me he listened to License to Ill over the weekend after seeing the Beastie Boys sticker on my car my first day. I’ve been choosing the music in the office and he told me I have great taste in music and the songs I play get stuck in his head. He came up with a nickname for me after a only a couple days and doesn’t seem to call anyone else by a nickname. He offers to help whenever he notices I need it. He also asked me for help with something he could have totally figured out on his own. And he smiles at me every time he walks by my desk. I had to drop my car off at a shop Monday for an estimate and when I told them why I was leaving, he offered to pick me up from the shop and bring me back to work. We made small talk on the ride and he asked how I would get home and back to work the next day if they keep my car overnight. I told him I planned to Uber so he knew I don’t have a partner to cart me around. As we were getting ready to leave for the night he asked if I wanted a ride home. I told him the bid came in high and I was going to pick it up and bring it somewhere else for another quote. He insisted on driving me back to the shop to get my car. I told him I was going to bring it back Friday if it ends up being the best quote. We chatted a bit the next morning and I told him I had COVID a month before and he asked if I had anyone that took care of me. Before he left today he told me to text him in the morning if I needed him to pick me up from the shop, even though tomorrow is Thursday lol. So we had to exchange numbers. Our exchanges make me giddy and give me butterflies which doesn’t happen to me often. Does it seem like he’s into me? Or just being nice? Is he trying to find out if I’m single or just making chit chat? He’s definitely single and I am fully aware of the dangers of dating coworkers. It’s a small company that my friend owns so I know there’s no policy against it. Thanks in advance!
2020.08.07 20:02 Violent_Delights1992Episode One: The Ceremony
A brief summary: This platform seems like a good one to share my book, releasing them as i finish each chapter like episodes. The book is based hundreds of years from now in a dystopian society deep in the forests of what used to be Oregon. The ancient ones before them had destroyed themselves with not much evidence as to how or why. Could the answers be there the whole time right under there noses? By Jessica Rose Episode 1: The Ceremony The promise of new beginnings was upon us as the next generation was thrust into adulthood. The hope for better times loomed on the horizon, just as the sun peaked through the jagged rock of the crater. The cold still waters that dwelled in the massive rock was the clearest blue that I had ever seen. The natural phenomenon, hidden in the evergreens, was once a mighty mountain so high. But when it erupted in ancient times, it destroyed itself and became a hollow hill, forever collecting water like a bucket in the rain. However, a small island sits above the water inside the crater, a cone shaped mound of earth. It’s peppered with small pines and withered ever greens that are spaced just far enough apart that shade is nonexistent. Long ago the founder of our people built the black castle and tower on top of the island. Surrounded by the azure pristine waters, we are protected by the beauty of destruction. The tower rises above the rim of the crater, to see the rolling green hills in a 360 view. It was a scene of ethereal beauty, and peaceful like a painting without the brushstrokes, and as silent and smooth as snowfall in winter. My window faced the south region, where another mountain was hidden like a gem among the forest, only revealing itself on the clearest of days. Mornings were my favorite! I loved the bird song sung outside my window, signaling the dawn, like a footman announcing the grand arrival of a king. My name is Violet Winters, of the Winter family. My father, Pierce Winter, is the Sultan of Black Castle. He is a fierce man, the deep lines of stress are permanently etched into his skin, making him appear sturdy and wise, but weathered by many storms. The few times I see him are brief and nerve racking. The pressure not to displease him is so thick in the air, I struggle not to choke. It’s always a relief when he goes on the hunting trips with his posse or “Dragoons”, as he’d often called them. The Dragoons were a group of twenty-five men, highly trained, with state of the arc recurve bow and arrow technology. They were often armored to the teeth with daggers, axes, knives, spears, and swords, all contractual and light weight. They were the epitome of stealth and poise, effective hunters, and always under the command of Sultan Winters. The Sultan is responsible for providing for his people with what they need, and in that way, my father excels. Nobody in Crater Lake needs for anything. It’s something I’ve come to accept as the princess. I’d rather accept it, than be bitter over his constant absence. However, today was different, it was ceremony day, the day my life would be changed forever.... The ceremony was a month-long event, where we honor the reign of the current Sultan (my father) and welcome the new contestants to the throne. The contestants are the next generation of males, one from each family, if they were so lucky to produce a male heir. My father did not have the good fortune of a son. My mother had only been able to have one child before her youth began to wither away like the leaves on a tree as autumn took over the fruitful summer. So had her childbearing years, gone with it. My mother was named Lorelei Winters, but most knew her as the silent queen. She was born deaf but had a commanding presence in every room she was in, an expert at reading lips, she would gather bits of information and would give anything of note to my father. A haze of regal beauty hung around her like a glow from a candle, a fairy tale queen. I admired her very much growing up, but as the ceremony started to approach, she was different. Where once she was confident, she seemed anxious and worried. Lorelei had grown accustomed to the lifestyle in the castle, immensely enjoyed being the queen, so it came as no surprise she was planting the idea of a match between me and whoever the new Sultan would be. She did not wish to down grade from Black Castle to Rim city. Rim city was located a little farther down the mountain where the climate was more suitable for gardening. Lorelei grew up in Rim city until my father picked her out of a line up during the flower ceremony. The flower ceremony is after a two-year courtship trial where all the young suitors and ladies court each other until they find the person, they want to spend their life with. The Sultan is the only one able to choose whoever he desires to be his wife. My mother was the lucky chosen, and she never looked back. Courting ceremonies are very serious and important because there is not a second chance once you’ve chosen. Relations before or outside the sanctity of marriage was deemed worthy of death. It’s to keep the body sacred and our hearts loyal to our partner. Each generation goes through this cycle. In the first week of the ceremony, we begin by celebrating the current Sultans reign with music, feasts, and gifts are given and it is merry for all. The second week the candidates for the throne are announced and the fighting begins. I’ve been told it’s quite brutal and barbaric ritual, but necessary in the choosing of a Sultan. The third week is the celebration of the new Sultan, where we feast and allow the new Sultan to heal from wounds received from the fighting pits. And the final week is the flower picking ceremony. The Sultan will choose from a lineup of young women who will participate in the courting ceremony. If I am not chosen by the new Sultan to be his wife, then we shall no longer live in black castle, and that’s my mother’s worst fear. Providing for the kingdom is a full-time job, so the citizens in black castle work around the clock to make sure things run smoothly. There are guards who watch the cameras for any foul play, chefs, maids, seamstresses, gardeners, everyone has their place. My father hunts and tracks game throughout the cascades, and even as far as the coast. Him and his dragoons bring back hovering carts filled with the carcasses of deer, elk, bear, moose, and a few cows caught grazing in the wilderness. It’s all divided and placed at the market in Rim city, where bartering is the currency. Every citizen is provided land in Rim city, a garden to keep, chickens, pigs, one cow, two goats, and a gaggle of ducks. The elderly is cared for by their families, and there are several activities they are involved in, such as sewing and teaching. They pass their knowledge of herbs and natural medicines, down to the young so these methods are never lost in the flow of time. Everyone had a place, a purpose, a duty. We are taught, that just like the earth works together in harmony, we must also to thrive and have peace. The rules are simple, and all have a reason, but it wasn’t always this way. Hundreds of years ago things were drastically different. We aren’t taught much of the past, but what we know is that disease was rampant, weapons were more destructive and harmful to the environment. Those ancient people of the past almost destroyed the earth, but instead they destroyed themselves. The remnants of their ancient cities sit like deserted museums of history, collecting dust and eroding from the elements. They are tall and hollow structures that tower over the land. I’ve traveled to a few when I was younger and my father a much happier man. He used to crave my company, before the reality settled in and he realized a son would never be born to him. The novelty of a daughter wore off fast, and I stopped going with him to the ancient cities of old. However, ceremony days were very important, and everyone in the Black castle was required to gather in the valley below crater lake mountain. The trip down is very enjoyable and sanguine. Horses are accessible, or there are the commonly used magnetic rail train. The train is almost silent as it speeds down the mountain except for the whistle of wind caused by the sheer velocity. I didn’t want another ride on the train, I’d done that too many times before. This time I wanted to enjoy just being the princess of black castle, to feel a strong horse under me as its leisurely gallops through the evergreens. I craved the summer sun on my face, the wind in my hair, surrounded by the beauty of the forest below the pristine blue lake. My mother was not fond of the idea of traveling on horseback. She argued with me, stating the train was a much faster elegant ride. However, I would not be persuaded, and my father agreed, but only if I took five of his dragoons as chaperones. And it just so happened that one of those dragoon’s was the man I found to be so handsome and secretly wanted to court after the new Sultan was crowned. The only problem was he didn’t know it, and I’d worked hard not to give myself away. No one knows of my fancy towards him, because everyone loves to gossip, and it wouldn’t take long before the news would reach him. Throughout my father’s reign as Sultan he would let young boy applicants who wanted to train to be a dragoon a trial period to see if they were a good fit in the regime. The ones that are accepted proved to be exceptionally clever, strong, strategic, and are some of the first to get snatched up during courting season. With that in mind I needed to catch his eye, and what beautiful eyes they were..... He was taller than most of the dragoon’s in the regime, which automatically made him stand out. The blue of his eyes mimicked the sparkling blue pool deep in the Willamette forest, ancient, serene, and inviting. I appreciated his broad shoulders, perfectly proportioned to his abnormal height, his body mass was pure muscle, and he moved with the grace of a mountain lion on the prowl. Always ready to spring into action, despite the weight of his body armor, he was very stealthy and agile. I would sometimes watch him train some of the applicants, he was shrewd, and patient, the way he paid attention to each student, and I wanted to be the center of his attention. I just needed to talk to him, to either fuel or destroy the fantasy I’d constructed in hopes and dreams. But reality so rarely allows fantasy a dance in the ballad of life. Pushing those thoughts aside, I readied myself for the first day of the ceremony. All the girls were required to wear blue, of any hue and design, and the boys wore green. The green and blue color symbolize the unity of earth and water. We need the earth, and each other. So, I chose my dark blue dress, layered to combat the changes in altitude and temperature. I let my light brown hair tumble lightly in waves over my shoulders and back, I quickly brushed out the tangles. I loved my long hair and had no desire to cut it or put it up in such a celebration. Plus, I loved the dances after the luncheon, and the way the wind whipped it around in the breeze. Once I was ready, I left my chamber and joined my lady in waiting in the hallway. Her name was Marjorie winters, my cousin. She was a little older than me, and I knew she resented me for essentially being the boss of her, but I tried to treat her more like a friend than a lesser. I’ve always known living at black castle could change, would change, and it would be other families turn, worthy till the next generation. Marjorie was tall, blonde and had rich brown chocolate eyes that changed colors in the sun. Her skin was sun kissed, her body slim and graceful, I often admired her beauty, it would be no time before she would find a suitor, I thought as I greeted her with a smile. “How are you this morning Marjorie?” I asked, we made our way past the bustling crowd towards the opening of the castle that connected to the bridge. The guards who manned the entrance had already let down the heavy drawbridge, allowing safe passage to all coming and going from Rim City. Marjorie was wearing a bright blue dress that flowed from the small of her waist down to her heels. It was a plain and simple design, so unlike the beautiful woman who wore it, I thought, I was quite envious of her indeed. “I am doing well, Violet.” She answered. “I am excited for the feasts and dances in the valley. Oh! Your mother wants to see you before you go to the stables.” I rolled my eyes towards the ceiling in silent protest. Mother was always on my case about something, especially since the approach of the ceremony. “Where is she?” I asked. Marjorie lent me a sympathetic smile before answering, “Down in the kitchen, making sure her favorite cakes are being prepared, and grabbing a few tarts where she can too.” Her honesty was a breath of fresh air. “I truly treasure you.” I laughed, and then rushed down to the kitchens. The kitchens reminded me of a high functioning ant farm encased in glass, everyone had a key part in the ballet of food preparation. My mother, however, was the wrench in the gears, as she asked questions through her lady in waiting, and gave orders, sending everyone into chaos. All the ovens were on and the heat was almost unbearable, I’d rather be on my way to the stables, I thought as I felt sweat start to form on my forehead. My mother was at the epicenter of the busy hub, her dark brown hair was in a tight bun on top of her head, and the dark blue of her dress was identical to mine. We had the same hazel eyes and ivory skin, I’m a few inches taller, she still looked youthful despite her age of forty-seven. Jewel Winters was my mother’s lady in waiting. She had golden hair, fair skin, and green eyes that mimicked the saturation of spring in the cascades. She had poised shoulders and walked with her nose turned up at others. I never liked her, she was distant and rude towards me, I think she enjoyed the fact that she was closer to my own mother than I was. Jewel had her hair in a similar bun like my mother and dress. Was she trying to be her? I wondered just as my mother spotted me out of the jostling crowd. She gestured for me to come over, so I acquiesced, kindly excusing myself as I made my way to the center of the kitchen. My mother sent off a litany of questions, her hands working as her mouthpiece, went rapid fire as she went down an invisible list. “Is that what you’re wearing? Why isn’t your hair in a bun? Its important all the Winter family women display unity in hair style. Have you been practicing all your speeches? And for the last time won’t you please join us on the train?” Lorelei’s expression was pleading but I knew what that short train ride would consist of and I had plans of my own. I quickly glanced at Jewel’s smug smile, she looked me up and down slowly and gave a mocking smirk. I wanted to slap it off her face, but instead ignored her and answered my hovering queen. “Yes, to answer your question I am wearing this dress, and I like my hair down. I have memorized my speeches, and no I want to join the dragoons at the stable. Who knows how long I’ll be able to enjoy that?” I mimicked her pleading look in hopes to get her off my back, at least for the next couple of hours. Lorelei contemplated before giving me a curt nod, dismissing me from her icy presence. I could tell she wasn’t pleased but my time was running out to make the man of my secret desires notice me. I had to risk it. Moments later I was back at the castle entrance. The crowd had dimmed as the train loaded one car before zooming down the broken mountain side, then quickly loaded up another in rapid succession. The sun was shining brightly down on the bridge, making the black rock appear to smoke like a dragon steaming in anger through coarse pebbly skin. Despite the sinister appearance, I walked down the stairs that led towards the waters edge where they had carved out shelter for the beasties that served the castle. They stored the horses in a sectioned off stable, then the pigs, cows, and goats. They also stocked the lake with fish for those who liked to get out on the boat and roam around the azure waters. There is even a mysterious old log that has been floating vertically since the beginning of our history. I’d seen it a few times when going out on the water, but it didn’t seem all that interesting. I heard the crunch of my boots on the soft dirt and loose rocks, there was no wind at the bottom of the bowl, the cliffs blocked the air flow and all I felt was the white hot heat from the sun beating down on me. Thank goodness we will be in the shade most of the way down, I sighed with relief. The stables were kept cool, clean, and even smelled sweet like honey suckles. It didn’t take long before I went through the heavy door made of stone, and into the cool air of the stables. It took a moment for my eyes to adjust and was quite surprised to see him. My secret love. His back was turned towards me, his broad shoulders taking up almost the whole walkway. He was wearing dark green armor fitted to him like a second skin, and a matching hood that hung loose down his back. I could make out the weapons he had strapped to his thigh, the bow and arrows strapped around his back, a belt full of mini explosives, and the daggers hidden up his sleeves. He was so powerful, and calculating, I swooned silently before clearing my throat. He didn’t move. Oh. Maybe he didn’t hear me, I thought so I walked closer behind him. He looked like he was loading all his equipment onto the back of a big black stallion. “Do you know which horse I’ll be riding?” I asked. His back still turned, and no response. Geez, I knew we never talked but I didn’t think I was invisible. I was starting to lose my nerve but instead of talking myself out of it I just went forward and tapped his shoulder, granted it was a stretch because of his height. I didn’t even have time to take a breath before I was on the ground and there was a dagger in my face, centimeters from my pupil. I dare not move or breathe. His eyes pierced me with their chilly gaze before recognition dawned and he lowered the dagger immediately. He sheathed it so quickly I didn’t even see before he was lifting me to my feet with an apologetic expression on his face. I could have swooned all over again, but I was too busy catching my breath. “I humbly apologize princess.” He stated, head bowed and dropped to one knee as if proposing instead of apologizing. I wish it was the former, I thought, trying to force my voice to work. He was breathtaking, those blue eyes bright now with embarrassment and guilt. “I had on the listening device; I didn’t hear you.” Oh, that makes sense! The listening device was the privilege between dragoons and the Sultan. The Sultan was always able to stay in touch and give out announcements all at once. It was a tiny microscopic device implanted inside the ear, and it doubled as a tracking device. As a dragoon, you were basically the Sultans property. “I should have known when you didn’t respond.” I say a little breathlessly. We were finally talking and the first things we say to each other are “sorry”? Kill me. My mind was racing, and my tongue felt heavy, he literally had me struck dumb. Sensing my nerves, he stood and cleared his throat. “The Sultan informed me moments ago that it will just be I accompanying you down to Rim City. He couldn’t spare more than me, I’m afraid.” The smile that played along his lips was genuine and warmed my cheeks. “Oh.” I say, trying to hide my excitement. I would be alone with him, for miles on horseback! “I hope I’m not keeping you from anything important.” I say, biting my lip in an innocent display. He made me so shy, made me forget I was the princess of this kingdom, and daughter of the Sultan. Around him, I was a blabbering idiotic silly little girl. He gave a small shrug, those shoulders like mountains themselves, graceful and beautiful. “I volunteered.” Now I could barely breathe! Did he just literally say he volunteered to guide me down the mountain!! “That was very nice of you.” I smile, despite feeling my face warm as cherry pie in the middle of summer, the steam visible and rising. “I do not believe we have been properly introduced,” then I gave a polite curtsey, like I was taught by my tutor, before saying “I am Violet. It is a pleasure to make your acquaintance.” Then I rise, hoping that wasn’t over dramatic. Apparently, it wasn’t because he bowed his head in the way men are taught. “My name is Sauron, of the Summer family. It is my pleasure.” I thought I caught a glimmer in his eyes, as he gazed at me. “I have saddled our horses. Yours is this one,” he pointed to the smaller white mare with kind black eyes and a long soft pure white mane, “her name is Sugar.” “She’s beautiful.” I sigh. “Thank you for saddling her for me. I don’t know how to do it I’m afraid.” “It was my honor.” He smiled affably. “I can also help you mount her, if you wish.” Did he even know what he was doing to me? I was practically butter melting in the warmth of his presence. When I’d watched him fight and train the other dragoons, he was fierce, merciless, strong, capable. It was something else entirely to see him so close and full of cautious chivalry. He was more than just a handsome face, I thought, he was full of layers and complexity, and I wanted to explore all its depths. “I appreciate it.” I smiled. So, he did as he offered and lifted me off my feet and onto Sugar’s back like I weighed nothing, in one swift motion. It wasn’t long before he was leading the way towards the steep switchbacks up the inside of the crater bowl. It was slow and graceful, Sugar was just as sweet as her name, she swayed gently as I held on for dear life. The scenery was breathtaking as we rose in altitude, I was just thankful for the stone railing that kept us from slipping off the edge. Sauron looked back at me and gave a nod once we were halfway. His eyes penetrated my soul, as his blue gaze deep as the water of the lake, looked me up and down quickly then turned his head. I could barely breathe. I was a solitary person for most of my life and got quite good at reading others around me, even better than I could read myself. So, every tiny gesture or motion he makes, its with purpose, and the way his eyes raked me up and down sent a shiver of anticipation through me. Did he desire me too? I’ve had a crush on him for years, always from afar, hiding, not wanting him to see just yet, or know how I felt. But with the ceremony beginning, my time had run out and I needed to at least try and see if there was a chance. Once we reached the crest of the crater, the world of green and blue hues was bountiful in the spring air. The breeze whipped my long loose waves around in tangles until I grudgingly put it in the bun my mother requested. Sauron had slowed his stallion down to a trot right next to me and Sugar. “Are you excited for the ceremony?” he asked, his voice and mannerisms friendly and curious. I nodded, “I am, I’ve always heard about it and grew up with the tales, now it’s our generations turn to take the throne. Its exciting to see who the next ruler will be.” I answered honestly. I could care less whoever was worthy for the crown next, I wanted only one thing. “What about you?” He nodded at my response, “Don’t tell anyone, but I’m a little nervous. It’s new territory for me.” “How so?” “I put my name in the running for the fighting pits. To be the next Sultan.” His confession gave me mixed feelings. He would be able to choose anyone during the courting season and the flower picking ceremony if he won. Would he choose me? The thought alone materialized a few butterflies that started fluttering more like wild honeybees. “I won’t say a word,” I promise, “You are a good fighter, I have no doubt you’ll win.” The honest words flowed out of me like a lazy river, effortless and right. “You mean it?” he asks, like he doesn’t quite believe it himself. “You think I’m a good fighter?” Oh, see now I realized he was teasing me. I blushed even harder and gave lighthearted laugh. “Nope, I was just being nice. You don’t have a chance.” I tease. Its easy to joke about on the outside, but the horror stories from the ceremonies of the past give me anxiety. The volunteers who stake their claim to the throne, are essentially risking their lives. The fighting pits are a fight to the death. There can be only one Sultan. Sauron boomed with laughter. It sounded as deep as thunder and shook like an earthquake, rocking his shoulders. “What do you want after all this?” he asked once his laughter faded. “The ceremony? Hmmm.” I linger on the question, tasting it on my tongue, not wanting to get the flavor wrong or ruin this wonderful interaction by being too hasty. “I want to be happy, to wake up with no expectations, maybe start a family, learn how to do things for myself instead of constantly having them done for me. I want to be useful, not looked at, I want to be smart and capable. I’m hoping I suppose for a change. The winter family can’t stay on the throne forever.” I confess. “You are not happy now?” By then we were in the shade of the ever greens. The air had chilled and the snow from the previous winter littered the forest floor. The contrast between life and death in a constant battle of tug of war. The winters obliterate the life spring and summer created, every year without mercy. But just like winter destroys, spring and summer bring life. Winter has reigned too long in my heart and my family; I wish for a summer ruler. His question was personal but there was something about him that I trusted so easily. “I have it easy,” I say, “I do, as the princess, but there is a part of me that wishes I didn’t.” “What do you mean, Violet.” He asked, saying my name. He said it, lingered on it, like a sweet treat, savoring every morsel before swallowing. “I want to leave.” I say, so abruptly, I didn’t realize that’s truly what I wanted until the words fell out of my mouth. “Yes, to leave.” I reiterate. “Leave where?” he asked curious. We had found the ancient road that was built by the humans of old. The click clacks of the horse’s hooves on the hard-black surface was a comforting sound like a pendulum swaying back and forth. “Black Castle.” I stated simply. “And not to Rim City either, I want to go beyond all of this. I want to discover how big the world truly is.” “All by yourself.” He asked hesitantly. “I would prefer company, Sauron.” I smiled at him. Saying his name like dripping honey on the hive, hoping he would catch the subtle flirtatious air in my voice. He didn’t even get a chance to reply before a loud growl pierced the air. Rustling of leaves and breaking of sticks filled my ears and overloaded my senses. Terror took over completely as the giant grizzly bear charged. We had been so wrapped up in conversation we hadn’t noticed the giant beast right next to us. The stallion Sauron was riding was calm as steel despite Sauron racing to pick an explosive off his belt. My nerves got the best of me as I saw the giant pelt of running fur collide with Sauron. I let out an ear-splitting scream that sent Sugar into a frenzy. She drew up on her hind legs and off I fell onto a patch of hard icy snow. I shook my head to rid the dizziness warping my reality as my ears were filled with growls and Sauron screams…. That snapped me back into action. Sugar and the stallion were long gone, running off into the forest. Sauron was under the bear, his feet kicking as he struggled to push the bear off him before he sunk those giant teeth into that beautiful neck. “Run Violet! Run now!” he pleaded, but I was paralyzed. My nerves taut and tight like the strings on a finely tuned guitar, I felt something build up inside of me, like a warm fire spreading quickly, growing hotter. I couldn’t move, I was locked to the forest floor like I was tree, the roots winding its way through the dirt, anchoring into the earth. Then just when I thought the pressure and heat growing inside of me would kill me, it snapped. A scream I couldn’t release moments before filled the forest air. It was directed at the angry beast attacking the man I wanted to be with. I wanted it dead, obliterated, like it had never been. With each passing second, I saw the bear was being lifted slowly off the ground, but it wasn’t Sauron. Sauron was grabbing his ears as the scream ripped through me and the forest. The senile bear was ten feet in the air, hovering and freaking out. I’d never heard cries like that escape a bear’s throat, the fear of being powerless rippling through it. I was angry, oh so angry, that this bear would attack such a perfect creature like Sauron. He could have been killed. My lungs were burning but I couldn’t stop screaming. The bear started to rip apart from the middle. Blood sprayed like a mist over me and Sauron. The bones and guts of the beast were scattered in several directions and the head hung in the branches of a tree above us. The stench of death rose to my nostrils and I collapsed to my knees. How? Was the only word echoing in my brain, the bear had been flying and then ripped apart like it was as tender as smoked rib gliding off the bone. My body felt weak and depleted, there was a trickle of blood flowing out of my nose as I rested my head against the snow. I just needed to lie down, now that Sauron was safe, I just needed a little rest. “Violet, wake up violet!!” I heard as Sauron crouched over me, tapping my face gently. “Violet please!” he said getting desperate, shaking my shoulders. “I’m just so tired.” I sigh. “What did you do?” he asked more to himself than to me. I was already drifting into the dark depths of rest. I barely noticed his strong hands lifting me into his embrace before I was lost in a black warm lake of unconsciousness. THE END OF EPISODE ONE.
2020.08.07 09:01 RedwoodDryad34 [F4M] NE Ohio looking for a nerdy/subby partner in crime!
Hello, darlings! I am a relatively recent transplant to NE Ohio, near Cleveland. Been here almost a year now, got settled in, wanted to go meet some shiny new folks... and bam! Global pandemic. I am usually an introvert, but this at this point, its rough even for the most introverted of us. Looking for a lovely human I can grow with, I'd like something long term and I love the idea of building a poly family. I am a sucker for a feminist with a sharp wit and a kind heart. Extra points if you want to play some D&D with me! Like most of the rest of you, I’m a sci-fi and fantasy nerd. I also enjoy cooking, gardening, and creating things! I sew, crochet, and build my own computers. I am an animal lover and basically turn into Snow White at parties if given the chance. I love wandering around a forest, snuggling in warm blankets, watching the rain, and cuddling while binge-watching Netflix. I am married, we've been poly for about 8 years and a mother of two lovely wee beasties. I'm not unicorn hunting. I have some chronic health issues but do my best to not let them dictate my life, but some days will be better than others. I game! D&D5e, Stars Without Number, Borderlands 3, and Overwatch (pc) are my current drugs of choice. And, uh... many of you are kinky. I am a Domme-y switch, and I want to explore that side of me more. I'd love to find someone with submissive tendencies or a rope bunny. While I do want a play partner, it is not essential, but we need to be friends first. I'm not looking for something purely in the BDSM category.
2020.08.03 21:09 _jkcLooking to make new friends with similar interests 😊
Hi there. This is one of my first times posting on Reddit so sorry if this is a mess. Also just a heads up this was also posted to Lonely lol. I’m a 17F from Toronto. All my life I’ve always struggled to get along with people well and/or find people who genuinely share the same interests as I do and when I finally do, I’ve pushed them away. I literally only have one person in my life who I’m close with that’s not my family and that’s my partner. It makes me feel like shit when I scroll through IG and see all these people having fun together, many of which I used to be friends with or just close with in general. And while I don’t really miss being friends with these people, I miss the idea of them and the idea of having a solid group of friends. I do have social anxiety, and have struggled on and off with depression, but most consistently I’ve always just felt really alone even if there has been points in time where I’ve had a lot of people around me that could be considered my friends. I’m learning as time goes on that maybe my loneliness does just come down to my mentality, and most definitely I am finally improving and ready to put myself out there again but I’m finding that I have no outlet to do it and just want to genuinely find people who have the same interests as me. Soooo yeah. Here I am! If you like any of the following please hit me with a message, I’d love to talk: Music (mostly alternative/rock such as: Beastie Boys, RHCP, foo fighters, green day, nirvana, etc. But always open to new music!). Bass. ATLA. Comics (mostly DC specifically anyone under the Batfam, but MCU for life). Art. Fashion. YouTube. Video games. General random facts about the world. Going on adventures at night P.S I work a lot right now so if it takes me a bit to respond I’m really sorry
2020.08.03 21:04 _jkcLooking to Break My Lonely Mentality
Hi there. This is one of my first times posting on Reddit so sorry if this is a mess. I’m a 17F from Toronto. All my life I’ve always struggled to get along with people well and/or find people who genuinely share the same interests as I do and when I finally do, I’ve pushed them away. I literally only have one person in my life who I’m close with that’s not my family and that’s my partner. It makes me feel like shit when I scroll through IG and see all these people having fun together, many of which I used to be friends with or just close with in general. And while I don’t really miss being friends with these people, I miss the idea of them and the idea of having a solid group of friends. I do have social anxiety, and have struggled on and off with depression, but most consistently I’ve always just felt really alone even if there has been points in time where I’ve had a lot of people around me that could be considered my friends. I’m learning as time goes on that maybe my loneliness does just come down to my mentality, and most definitely I am finally improving and ready to put myself out there again but I’m finding that I have no outlet to do it and just want to genuinely find people who have the same interests as me. Soooo yeah. Here I am! If you like any of the following please hit me with a message, I’d love to talk: Music (mostly alternative/rock such as: Beastie Boys, RHCP, foo fighters, green day, nirvana, etc. But always open to new music!). Bass. ATLA. Comics (mostly DC specifically anyone under the Batfam, but MCU for life). Art. Fashion. YouTube. Video games. General random facts about the world. Going on adventures at night P.S I work a lot right now so if it takes me a bit to respond I’m really sorry
2020.07.24 19:57 ColourblindnessI’m an actor at a Wild West model town. Standoff at the ranch.
123456789101112131415161718 19 I’m a new… you know what, fuck that explanation. I don’t have much time to explain this at the moment. Update: I was using the last bit of my juice, hiding behind an old cupboard and dodging bullets from a hell bent psychopath; I couldn't properly explain everything that was happening. Cliff Reilly showed up less than an hour after we arrived at the ranch. The ranch where we discovered we were double fucked for even thinking there was a way out of Hollow Valley. Colleen’s bleeding from her shoulder, a bullet grazed her. And I’m trying my damnedest to think of what to do. I asked Cliff what he wanted but was only greeted with more bullets. Thomas said that the gunslinger was insane. Considering all the havoc he’s caused, I think I believe him. Miss Murray managed to lock herself in the bedroom and Owen barricaded the door. We have a few moments to recover as Cliff is forced to go back out to his horse and reload. “We need to boobytrap this entire ranch,” Owen said as he pulled me to my feet. He told me we might have 4 minutes. Maybe not even that. I pushed the couch toward the back door and Thomas ran to the kitchen to get an ice pack for Colleen. “What the fuck is Reilly’s problem anyway? Why is he so trigger happy to kill us all?” I mumbled. I wasn’t expecting an answer but Mina Murray gave one anyway. She stepped into the room, her body shaking as she seemed to realize what was happening. “I think he is enacting his revenge toward our family. He always said one day he would run us into the ground when he had the means.” “Mom… Jesus. When were you planning to tell me all of this shit?” Colleen winced as Thomas pressed the ice pack against her shoulder. “We’ve dealt with this curse for years and we wanted you to live a normal life!” Mina said as Owen finished the barricade and told me to head for the next room. “I have a few spare bear traps that should slow him down… but not much. Truth is, we need a little help around here or we may all be resurrected soon enough,” Owen said. “That wouldn’t happen for me or mom! We’ll be dead! Is that what Cliff wants? To kill us and keep this hell alive forever?” Colleen asked. Something clicked in my brain as I boarded up another window and I remembered the story that Mina had told us of Hollow Valley’s history. “This was Saul,” I realized as I turned to the others. Before any of them got to ask how I had come to this revelation, more bullets started to strike through the shoddy ranch walls. “Give it up, boys and girls. There’s nowhere here that you can hide where I can’t find you,” Cliff said as he started to slowly waltz through the room opposite of us. As he disappeared down another corridor Miss Murray grabbed my coat and asked pointedly, “What do you mean by that? Saul has been a family friend for ages!” “Doesn’t anyone else think it’s a little convenient that he left the moment you revealed the truth about these creatures, about the gold? I bet he’s been wondering that for years. Ma’am no offense. He literally asked me to kill your husband the moment I came here to Hollow Valley,” I said. Mina’s soul seemed to shatter for a moment as the reality of what I was saying hit her like a ton of bricks and then an axe smashed through the door and Cliff’s bizarre Shining like smile piercing the night air. Colleen grabbed a diner plate and smashed it against his face. As he stumbled backward Owen held his ground and said, “Get to the stables. Go find Sheriff Logan. We need to take down this son of a bitch once and for all.” Colleen and I moved toward the back of the old farmhouse as Thomas chose to stay with Owen and they started a standoff against Cliff. Something still didn’t make sense to my theory though. “If Cliff is working for the monsters that run this shit hole, they wouldn’t want your family dead would they?” I asked Colleen as we took the back stairs and ran toward the stables. Cliff was already bounding out the front door, just about to be at us when Thomas flung his body on top of the gunslinger and the two wrestled in the dirt. It was now clearer than ever that Cliff was determined to kill Colleen and her mother. “Can we discuss all this when guns aren’t pointed at us?” Colleen asked as she unbridled one of the horses and gestured for her mother to get on. “No. You go get Congreve alone. I need to stay here and confront Saul. If… if what Mister Lenar is saying is true. I need to know.” Colleen pursed her lips, wanting to argue. But there was no time. Cliff was about to stab Thomas to death if we didn’t act. “Miss Murray get back in the house with Owen. Colleen you need to ride!” I shouted. The younger woman didn’t hesitate and encouraged her horse to ride off toward town as I turned my attention back to Reilly. Maybe if I was lucky I could talk him down, I thought. Then I saw he brandished a tomahawk and smashed it right into Thomas’ shoulder. I raised my pistol immediately. “Reilly. That’s enough.” The gunslinger ignored me at first and I cocked the weapon, sending a warning shot. I probably should have killed him where he stood to be honest. He deserved it after all of this. But something told me there was more to this broken man like every other part of Hollow Valley Reilly let out a pained sigh as he stood up and slowly turned toward me. A scar ran up and down his side where Thomas had ripped his shirt off. “Finally up to play are ya, Lenar? I was beginning to wonder.” “What’s your game. Cliff? What’s this all for?” I shouted back. The gunslinger spit in the sand and his hand twitched to reach for his gun. “Don’t do it or I will take off your fingers,” I warned. “You want to know my sob story? As if it’ll make a difference what I do? Think it’ll brighten my dark heart?” Cliff shook his head and tipped his hat back as he glanced toward Thomas. “I was like you once. So angry with Hollow Valley. But I was smart. I waited cause I knew I needed to learn everything I could about this place. And I did, Caine. I sold my soul to find out the evils of this place,” Cliff said his hands now curled up into fists. “They say there’s always a price attached. I guess that’s probably truer than they say. I slowly lost my humanity when I saw what they…” he paused sticking a finger toward the ranch house. “Do to us.” “That’s why i was happy when I saw you had kidnapped the bitch. Burst my bubble when you died and then switched sides. You could have been a good ally,” Cliff said. “And we can still be. Cliff, there is so much you don’t know…” I took a step forward and he just laughed. “Like the magical gold? Some shit story eh? Maybe the Murrays believe that crock but I don’t care. If it can kill these beasties down below its all the same to me,” Cliff stammered. “So then you are planning to double cross them!” I realized. “Then we can work together! We can make this right!” “Sorry partner. I prefer to ride solo. Too many times have I got hurt for putting my trust in other people,” he remarked dryly. Then he gestured toward Thomas. “But I’ve always been a fair man. I’ll make you a deal. We do a showdown just like we were meant to all those days ago in the Valley. Toe to toe. Only one of us walkin’ away.” “This isn’t a game Reilly!” I insisted. “It is for me. And I’m winning. Once you’re out of the way nothing. Will stop me from skinning them. The Murray’s deserve it for the hell they’ve caused. For the hell they put my family through…” I noticed he was slowly pacing away, his hand gently gliding down to his gun when it hit me. “Family…?” Then I realized where all of his hatred was boiling from. He had in fact lost everything. I gazed toward the horizon wondering if Colleen was anywhere close and understood precisely why Cliff said that he planned to do everything in his power to make us pay. 20
2020.07.16 03:37 GungagingagungagingaUIB IN DEPTH REVIEW
SPOILERS AHEAD!!! This will be a track by track breakdown review with my overall thoughts in a paragraph at the end. DISCLAIMER THIS IS MY OPINION. Track reviews: Me, Myself & I: It's good. It serves it's purpose as the opener and does what it needs to and leaves. Lyrically it isn't super strong but, it makes up for being pretty catchy. 7.5/10 1993 (feat. Little Ricky ZR3): The song is like a much better version of "Do You Feel Me". The song is really good, even if it took a little while to grow on me. The little glimpse that we get of Little Ricky ZR3 is a little underwhelming but, not bad. 8/10 Cash Machine: The thing that makes this song as good as it is, is that it's so damn catchy. It's simple and easy to get the groove of it. Lyrically it has a pretty good message but, I wish Oliver would explore further into it. 7.5/10 Let Me Down: While it isn't a bad song, it feels like a stand alone single. As well as being pretty short, it doesn't really do much. I think it's catchy and is good for radio play, I guess. 6/10 Miracle Man: This track is amazing. Even though being pretty short like "Let Me Down", it does more in the little time it has. The hook is infectious and the lyrics of Oliver growing tired of his partner never having enough, makes the song great. 8.5/10 Bury Me Alive: Probably the strongest single, "Bury Me Alive" embodies what Oliver can bring to the table when rapping. The Beastie Boys beat switch with Oliver's rapping makes the verses worth the whole song. Lyrically Oliver is great here when talking about death and even referencing Tree. The hook is catchy but, slows the song a bit. Both the live version and the studio version are great. 9/10 Alien Boy: It's a little worn out. I still like it but, it doesn't really serve a purpose here since there's no "Alien Boy Reprise" to compliment it. It just feels a little cheap to put it on here again. 7/10 Joke's On You!: Wow. This may be his best work yet. Already having very high expectations from the live performances, the song sounds amazing in studio quality. Lyrically Oliver is at his strongest here. Lines like "My whole was just a joke" and "People tell me I should jump" set the tone for the song. However, my only problem is with the amount of energy Oliver has on the second verse. I wish he had the same energy on the first verse but, amazing nonetheless. 9.5/10 Again & Again: Oliver's vocals here really shine here. The song has a catchy chorus and Oliver gives some decent lines. The rock influence is heavy on this album and this song is no exception to that. 8/10 Waste My Time: This song is so groovy. Similar to "Joke's On You!" I had very high expectations for this song because the live version was amazing. Although, the kinda bizarre vocal delivery Oliver gives on the first verse, the song is amazing. It all comes to a epic conclusion with a simple but, amazing guitar solo. 8.7/10 Jerk: This song is grunge at it's roots and it's amazing. The guitar riff at this beginning is grungey as hell and sets a depressing moods for the song. Then, the drums pick it up and the chorus expresses the distain Oliver has for someone saying he never wants to see them ever again. The chorus is catchy and the lyrics are Oliver at his loneliest. Lines like "I'm better off alone" and "I'm tired if feeling so fucking lonely" give the song a punch to the gut. 8.8/10 Hurt: I think whatever needs to be said about this song has been said. It's amazing and is a classic for Oliver Tree fans. It has a catchy chorus, great lyrics and a great vocal performance by Oliver. 9/10 Introspective: It's a grower. When it first dropped on the "Do You Feel Me EP" I wasn't the biggest fan of it but, as time went on it grew on me a lot. I think the lyrics of a broken relationship and the catchy chorus make a pretty damn good song. 8.5/10 I'm Gone: It's a sad goodbye. The chilling verses with the intense choruses make his goodbye song even more tragic. Oliver gives a much different vocal performance than usual and almost has a vintage feel to it. The guitar in the background of verses give a dark and empty feeling contrasting with the guitar and drums in the choruses. Even though it doesn't include "Alien Boy Reprise", it's safe to say Oliver goes out with a bang on this one. 9/10 OVERALL THOUGHTS: The album is a great body of work and really shows who Oliver is. While it is sad that Oliver Tree is gone, we can only move forward and see what he brings to the table next. BEST TRACKS: Joke's On You!, Jerk, I'm Gone, Waste My Time, Bury Me Alive, Hurt, Miracle Man WORST TRACKS: Let Me Down ALBUM RATING: Strong 8/10 - Decent 9/10
2020.07.14 12:55 pooky207Lords and Ladies, I require your counsel on the subject of black dragons
Greeterlings! So, not long ago, TWW2 and TWW1 went on sale. I asked about buying them on the total war subreddit, and was advised to get TWW2 and then TWW1 as functionally DLC for TWW2. Having never played a total war game before, I started as Malekith - shares exp with other lords seemed like the perfect starter character. However, I'm still learning how the units work and trying to figure out what a bunch of things actually do. One of these, as you may deduce from the title, is black dragons. One of my black arks has an admiral that got a name that reduces the upkeep of beast-types, and a follower that also reduces their upkeep and increases recruit rank. The admiral was also specialized in logistics for further reduction. I'm at the point where upkeep in this particular army is free for all the beasties, including black dragons. How many black dragons in my cap of 20 should I have? Are they an air support unit or a universalist unit? Same question for manticores and the other beasties, harpies etc. - I see little trait things displayed, but mousing over them doesn't do anything, so it's been difficult trying to go around googling stuff to figure out what the army units are actually doing. I am also wondering if speed lets me air support stuff like I can with black ark bombardment radius. Or like, sit an army next to Malekith for quests and get them to assist. I keep having to do stuff with Malekith but the armies I position next to him don't join in, even if not teleporting.. it's weird and I am wondering if I positioned stuff wrong. Oh, also - my only trading partner at the moment is clan rictus, and I am told the skaven are nasty. Trade with them is about a tenth of my total revenue, though.. so I am wondering, to genocide, or not to genocide, that is the question. I'm at around +50 reputation with them (not sure if that's actually considered a lot) and don't know if I can confederate skaven at all. They seized a lot of territory south of my stuff very quickly so I'm a little concerned about them. Why does giving the bride-of-khaine a mount reduce a bunch of her stats? Does that cause problems in battle? But, the most critical issue is still trying to figure out what my army compositions should actually be like. How many manticores, harpies, black dragons? What.. exactly.. are they? Tanky-dps-universalists? High-damage-fragile?
2020.06.29 23:55 LovetheangelshadowSplinterbark: Trial by Gorilla CH 9
Chapter 9: Jinn and the Hunter
Two weeks had flown by since then. As far as either family of theirs was concerned, they were staying behind after school for extra help with their homework. Blackbird was not the easiest master to work with though. To keep up appearances, they had to complete their homework before even being allowed into the training room. Reed was quite vocal about it at first and then he was stubborn about admitting when he struggled. Shelly would just quote an old Songbird PSA comic about education in the corniest way possible until it annoyed Reed enough to submit to the forced homework time. It only took a week for that to happen much to Blackbird’s amusement. He commented how they definitely were slated to be partners though Reed failed to understand his assessment. At first the news and internet were abuzz with speculation since the duo were rarely seen compared to before. In several days’ time they had practically vanished from internet attention save for a few internet trolls and self-righteous journalists claiming it was their efforts that drove the menaces away before they could do any real damage. The school was similar. Reed and Shelly had to listen to homeroom buzz with all the theories going about on what happened to the new heroes. Most held the belief that they were not necessary and it was better they had disappeared. Those who will still in favor for them were few and mostly silent out of terror of social ousting. Reed silently cringed before uttering patience to himself. It was a cold night in late September. Shelly, in full Splinterbark garb, was standing on the roof of the apartment complex near her house. While they spent most of their time inside the training cellar, Blackbird had them go out and do minor field exercises and to familiarize themselves with the city. Today was a bit different. Blackbird decided that the duo were to go on to night patrol. He did not foresee them being crime fighters of the night, but the practice always helps. Splinterbark tapped the earpiece Blackbird had given her to confirm she was at the location above the building of an old salon. “Guess it’s just you, Frix, and me, Master Blackbird”, Splinterbark quipped. “And blondie is not with you because?” “Um…he kinda did mention he got a job recently.” “The son of the self-made Morgan Altamiri having a job? What does he do? Count the money bin?” Shelly was not exactly sure if that was a mirthful jibe or malicious spit. “Beats me. I tried asking him and he got sore at me. Thomas won’t tell me either.” There was a pause and then a long sigh over the radio. “It cannot be helped I suppose. I don’t expect full time supers of you two. Trust me, it’s not something you want dominating your childhood.” “Oh…but until we can figure out what happened to the Golden Guardian, myself and Reed is all the city has.” “For now anyway.” Splinterbark wanted to ask who he was talking about, but her master interrupted that her assignment was just a basic night reconnaissance-no getting into fights. Just observe certain areas and report back. She did have a math quiz tomorrow. Forty minutes had passed since Splinterbark was following the directions of her master. She stopped on a park terrace for a quick snack and maybe a coffee. The café down below was one of the few bright things she had come across tonight. The jazz band was playing nice and loud and people were enjoying the discounted booze they were serving tonight. Frix clapped his hands the best he could around his floppy ears. “The music isn’t that bad. That trumpet could shut up though. Too bad I can’t make metal explode, huh Frix?” “I wish”, Frix snarled. The trumpet noise was getting strangely louder though. At its shrillest point it was followed by screams and a loud rolling crash. Splinterbark slid down a pipe and maneuvered on over to see just what was happening. The band area was being engulfed by the biggest copper colored slug abomination she had seen to date. Nozzles dotting its entire body wheezed out a trumpeting wail as it exhaled large deep breaths. The boils about its body seemed to shiver and blink like a dozen eyes trying to see everything around it. “Any suggestions, boss?” Splinterbark squawked into the intercom. Blackbird barked for her to get some distance and see if she can get people away from the area. He was going to try and contact Reed and get him over to her as soon as possible. Splinterbark acknowledged the order and pulled out some rope from her holster. The gargantuan gastropod was looming over some unlucky guests who had been stopped by debris with tendrils oozing out of its body to snatch them in its coils. Suddenly a loud shrill whistle made the largest boil glide around its lumpy neck behind it. Splinterbark was spinning some kind of metallic weight above her head attached to her rope. “Yo Boilanna Slug! The doctor called and he said you need more cowbell!” She flung the weight and it bounced five feet away from the slug’s body with a sad ping poing clash. It seemed puzzled at the bell as Splinterbark uneasily dragged it back to her in embarrassment. Even Frix tried to cover his eyes with his tiny talons. Okay so it didn’t exactly go as she saw it in her head. The bulbous red cyst was locked on to her. It did not exactly turn but began to roll like a soggy hot dog bun towards her. Splinterbark had to run as the thing gained speed even if it had to plow through all the patio furniture to do it. The door to get inside was, surprise, stuck and the thing was almost on top of her. “Tally ho!” was the cackling cry of someone from up above. A blur of black and purple leapt down from the roof and a blade sliced across the gullet of the slug. The giant gastropod gurgled as it reeled back slightly and knocked into a broken light stand. It shocked itself dazed and it wiggled on the floor. The welder of the blade fluttered down with his long cape trailing behind him. He was a tall humanoid creature with long gangly limbs and a sleek elongated body. His outfit sported a black formal military style coat, black slacks, and formal shoes. The pauldrons and tassets of his ensemble were not of metal or leather but appeared to be some kind of bony shell segments that would be more at home on some kind of insectoid monster. Save for his pallid pointed chin, his face was concealed by a magenta visor and segmented helmet that reminded Splinterbark of an avian skeleton-but still made of the beetle carapace as the rest of his armor. A pair of long bone-like horns were fastened to the front and curved back and twisted akin to a goat. On the left side of the helmet there was a long crack that reached down his chin and all the way to the base of his neck like some sickle had cut it. Completing the look was a long black cape cut similar to ragged dragonfly wings. In his hand was an outlandish emerald colored sword. The blade was not metal and appeared to be a strange mix of crystal and bone. It was slightly jagged and rough but glistened like a gemstone. The handle was also bone-like but carved into the shape of a dragonfly. This buggy demon didn’t seem to notice Splinterbark was even there and was just flicking some slime of his shoulder armor. He probably would not even observed her there at all until she shouted for him to duck and jerked him to the floor the best she could. A slimy tentacle had slithered out from the slug’s body and had managed to sneak behind them. Instead of latching onto either of the two, its suction-like appendage grabbed the wall behind them and jerked it down. Both braced for the impact of debris though it never happened. A pink barrier had encased them and the wall had bounced harmlessly off it. “Really now, the great and glorious Hunter can’t even see an obvious blindside attack like that?” Their savior was a young woman hovering in the air on a long black staff with two orbs on each end that seem to hover about the ends. She was dressed in a short dark blue and pink dress with ragged edges along the skirt end. Her long sleeves billowed out from her elbows like pink glittering buttercups. Long black gloves dotted with pink and purple rhinestones dressed her arms. A glittery pink domino mask concealed her face. The girl was rocking playfully on her “broom” as if watching this was amusing. Hunter made a sweeping bow and he knocked Spliterbark upside the head when he did so. “Aw, you’re my biggest groupie, Jinn. You wouldn’t let anything happen to me.” Jinn turned a beet red. “For the hundredth millionth time, I am NOT your fan!” The slug had swung the upper part of it body towards them. Hunter wrapped an arm around Splinterbark and made a bounding leap out of the path. He playfully patted her head and told her to stay put while addressing her as Stick. Hunter walked casually in front of the annoyed gastropod and taunted it with his sword. “Do try to make it fun for me”, he quipped. More appendages sprung out from the beast’s body as it attempted to crush the onyx demon. Hunter laughed as he bounced from wall to wall with the speed and coil of a cricket. He continued to laugh and taunt the creature. “Come on, all those eyes and you can’t hit little old me?” He sliced off a piece of concrete wall and chucked it against the creature’s chest. The beast’s tendrils slapped along the ground missing as Hunter tauntingly moonwalked from side to side; easily keeping out the reach of the strikes. “Oooh so close. Need some salt for that wound. Oh right, that might make it worse wouldn’t it?” Hunter seemed to be enjoying making the thing madder. Boilanana Slug rolled along the ground with its appendages spinning around its body and lashing out in all directions. Hunter bounced over the spiraling behemoth and let it crash against the wall. The problem was that wall was shielding some onlookers. The wall began to crumble backwards towards them. Splinterbark skidded in front of the civilians and jammed her hook staff between the ground and wall holding it in place. It was still sliding but it was enough time for the people to get clear and run. The partition crumbled and nearly flattened her if it were not for the sudden pink bubble that encased her just as the concrete pummeled around her. The bubble’s tail was connected to the witch’s staff. Jinn tugged and yanked the bubble with Splinterbark inside it just as the debris had finished falling. Jinn landed beside Splinterbark and seemed to just casually take a seat. “I would have saved them if you hadn’t gotten in my way”, she barked. Splinterbark pulled up her hook from the debris and was storming in the direction of Hunter. Hunter’s free hand sparked with dark colored fire and pummeled several blasts against the yellow flesh of the slug. It fizzled and gurgled as its wounds spewed out foam. Suddenly a weight that went clonk smacked him upside the head. He grabbed the falling object and saw it was a cowbell tied to a rope. “Hey! Buggy Beelzebub! Watch what you’re doing! You almost got some people crushed!” Hunter was standing on the side of a power pole and looked at the people who were standing there watching-and at least one had a phone in their hand recording the thing. Hunter snapped his fingers; sending a spark of magic in their direction where it made a small explosion at their feet and made them scatter. Splinterbark chided him for doing so. Hunter bounced from his perch and landed just in front of Splinterbark. He had to bend down to look her directly in the eye. “You’re joking right? And did you just hit me with a cowbell?” Jinn shoved her staff between them. “You don’t have time for this, Hunter”, she warned. Hunter pushed her aside with his white gloved finger against her forehead with his eyes still on Splinterbark. “Let me make this clear, pixie. If people are too stupid to get out of the danger, if they get hurt-too bad. Not my problem. So why don’t you and your little chia pet just move along and let us professionals handle this?” She said it so casually and coldly. Frix puffed up at the remark. “All right, dapper dunce! We’ll show you! Let’s go Splinter!” He dove straight at the best before Splinterbark could stop him. Frix spun like a corkscrew and rammed his little body against one of the larger eyes of the beast. The slug, aroused into a fuming mood already by Hunter, snatched the little imp with a tentacle and applied pressure to squeeze the life out of it. Splinterbark suddenly cried out in agony and clutched her chest as she fell to the ground. She could feel something cold and slimy squeezing her heart. This seemed to spur Hunter into retaliation. His sword sliced away at the various limbs until he could finally reach the spirit. Cupping the creature in one taloned hand, he drove his blade deep into the monster’s neck with the heel of his boot. Using his weight and the momentum of the hilt, he forced the monster down until it was pinned back on the floor. The creature gurgled and flopped around before it finally stopped moving. Splinterbark’s heart just finally getting back into normal rhythm. A flap of wings could be overheard that was growing closer towards them. Silver had just arrived, a bit short of breath and his appearance a little harried from the rush. “Splinterbark, Mr. Blackbird just got ahold of me and I got here as fast as I…YOU!” Hunter was standing over Splinterbark with Frix still in his hand and Splinterbark herself collapsed and wheezing at his feet with her gloved hand clutching the fabric above her chest. “What did you do to her?!” Silver rammed his body into Hunter and pummeled him into the still body of the slug monster. One of the boils burst and oozed its contents all over his suit. “Hey! What is your deal?” Silver did not respond and tried to pull a right uppercut at Hunter’s head. Hunter ducked and let Silver get his fist stuck in the slug’s body. The plum demon kicked up his sword from the floor and leaned on it. “Aw, is the widdle angel stuck?” Silver snarled as he flapped and twisted trying to break loose. The slime just slimed up further his arm and now his left boot was stuck in it. Even supposedly dead, this thing was a nuisance. Hunter leaned against Silver’s shoulder and started picking the nails of his battle claws with the tip of his blade. “If you want out, say please.” “Like hell I am, you devil!” Silver removed one pistol with his free hand and aimed directly at the mass he was entrapped in. Hunter tilted his head wondering if the guy was going to shoot his hand off. Silver fired off a few successive blasts which sent pieces of the creature all over the patio. Now free of both hands, Silver drew out the other firearm and shot two blasts directly at Hunter. Hunter managed to get his sword between one blast while the other grazed his side. Silver hurried at him and slugged Hunter across the helmet. Hunter spin back but was quick to regain control. A large crooked grin spread across his face and he cackled in delight. He could feel his heart racing with excitement. This was going to be even more fun than the slug. Now, Jinn had actually lifted from her seat this time. She was shrieking out to Hunter that he did not have time to be toying with the “blonde meathead” and that he had a job to finish before the cops arrived. Hunter was deliberately ignoring her. He heaved his blade over his shoulder in a downward cross chop. Silver caught it against the face of his metallic greaves and deflected it away. Hunter stuck again repeatedly and each time he was intervened. No one had been paying attention to the goldenrod pieces of the gooey giant. A ruby red rock was pulsing with increased fervidity and small black tendrils called out to its separated pieces. They were shuddering and slowly pulling itself back together. Though it only managed to retrieve half its bulk, it was enough to get it mobile, and it was starting to move out from the patio and towards the street. Jinn saw it first. Again she called out to Hunter who was still busy trading blows against the Silver Guardian. She started to run off after it and Splinterbark followed her as Silver was not listening to her either. The slug was not much bigger than a small elephant, but it rolled at a rapid pace towards the storm drain. It had already melted most of the way through down below. Jinn darted towards a sewer cap. She pointed her staff and purple mist began to curl about the heavy steel rim. With some effort she managed to wrench it off and followed down below with Splinterbark just behind her. Frix huddled inside her breast pocket as they traversed down. She could not entirely blame him either. The tunnel was cramped even for her size as the two girls forced their way out into the underground. There was no trace of the creature save for a few slimy drippings still clinging to the grate above. Jinn cursed loudly and shouted that this was all Splinterbark’s fault. If she had just hung back like she was told to, then Hunter would not have been distracted and done his job. Now Hunter was preoccupied thanks to as she called it “Splinterbark’s lug headed boyfriend”. “First off, Silver is not my boyfriend. Second, your manners suck. And three, why don’t we focus on finding Boilanana Slug and then point fingers later?” Jinn paused as she mouthed out the name Splinterbark had given the creature. “Boilanana…banana…heh clever.” “See? She got it!” Splinterbark snipped at Frix. Splinterbark tapped the earpiece and called Mr. Blackbird for suggestions. Luckily for them, according to her master, he doubted the slug had gotten too far away. The tunnel could only go in two directions and there had to be some trace hinting where it went. Splinterbark asked Frix if he was well enough to fly. He was still a bit winded, but assured he could do that much. The two went in opposite directions, glancing very carefully for any signs. Splinterbark’s hand graced a small bit of yellow mucus just along the edge of an archway. They were faint, but a few more droppings were ahead. She signaled to Frix and Jinn and they chased down the trail. The slug was hanging from an old pipe above, its gelatinous body heaving and oozing like an air filled bladder. It just hung there and seemed to be unaware of the girls’ presence. Jinn plucked the red orb from one end of her staff and fiddled from her bag until she produced a purple stone. Splinterbark asked what she was going to do. “I have to contain it and drag it back to Hunter.” “You can’t just blast it?” “If I could that I would not have to lower myself to being an animal trainer for that devil above us.” “Are these monsters a new threat or…” “They’ve been roaming about for at least a year as far as I know. For some reason, Hunter’s blade is the only thing that will vanquish them. The best my magic can do is incapacitate them. And the sword won’t respond to me if you must know. Ugh why am I even telling you this? You couldn’t even handle a moral monstrosity forcing me to save you two’s sorry hides. And you! It’s clear you have no magic ties. How did you even awaken and bond with that forest spirit? It’s not fair!” Her yells increased in volume and the sounds made the slug shudder. Its pores opened out and the trumpet like spines emerged. Honking at the annoyance it struck at the sound it thought its enemy was. Thankfully, its exhaustion from just pulling back together made the blows less severe. It latched onto the stones and its body released from the ceiling. It used the momentum to swing its body around in a wrecking ball fashion hoping to encase the two inside its body to feed on. The area was small, so there was little room to keep out of its way. Jinn kept attempting to encase the gastropod in a bubble but the constant moving shortened her concentration. She could not get a bubble large enough to encompass the whole thing. Splinterbark managed to get her moving straps and hook free and was starting to spun the hook to get some drive going. Jinn shouted that there was no way her measly little hook was going to tie up the whole thing. Splinterbark hurled the thing and aimed for a reddish boil that was slithering about along the slimy form. She managed to get the hook caught on the edge of the spot and she tried to pull it free. The cyst was trying to get loose from the catch as it spun around the main body and the strap was slipping from Splinterbark’s hands. She yelled for Jinn to help her. “This pimple was the only thing that kept dodging yours and Hunter’s strikes. I think is its brain or something.” Jinn grabbed the slipping end of the strap and both of them heaved as best they could. The ground was slightly slick from both the slug’s increase drippings of mucus as well as traces of the mildew around them; so it was getting harder for them to keep their footing. Spinterbark asked if it was possible Jinn could use her ‘magic flying stick’ for some extra pull? Jinn remarked that it was not powered by rockets. Frix darted out of there and squeezed himself up to the surface. Neither Hunter nor Silver had gotten the upper hand on the other. Hunter was too fast for Silver to land an effective blow on him; and by contrast Silver was able to deflect away most of Hunter’s strikes from his sword. It was only when Hunter’s cape had caught on some debris that Silver managed to get him on his back and was pinning him under his boot. “I don’t know what your problem is; but this is the most fun I’ve had in a while.” Silver’s face twisted in anger. “Fun? You think this is fun?!” He mustered up the energy for another shot. Frix rammed his body into Silver’s forehead and his shot went up into the sky. Silver grabbed the imp. “What are you going, you little shrimp?!” Frix bit his hand for all the good it did. “Splinterbark is down there all alone with that slug, you idiot!” Hunter wrenched himself from the floor with a hard twist and ordered for Frix show him where. It took a moment for Silver to realize just what was happening. A horrible panic churned in his stomach as soon as he realized what he just done and he scrambled after the duo to the underground. Splinterbark and Jinn could just barely hold onto the tether for much longer. The cherry boil was jerking and twisting all about its blonde mass trying to break free from the hook still embedded in its crags. In desperation it released one appendage from the walls anchoring it in place and stretched out towards it’s would be captors. The thing successfully managed to latch onto Splinterbark’s wrist and lurch her from her stance. The slimy vine bungeed back and slammed the girl into its body. As she fell, it coiled about her just before she hit the floor and was now drawing it towards a mouth-like opening that was tearing free from the main body. A violet bubble enveloped around her and it struggled to pull her back. Jinn tugged and pulled with her staff trying to get Splinterbark away. The tether, now free, was flapping about her ankles and slapping her in the shins as the heart of the beast still squirmed about. The creature was holding firm and fighting back against her magic. The handle of the tether, now drenched in water and mucus, slapped Jinn in the face and her bubble broke loose. A dark insectoid form skirted along the walls at a blinding pace and its talons lashed at the tendrils holding Splinterbark. A silvery feathered blur caught her and enveloped her in its wings as they dragged along the ground. Hunter hacked away at the blubbery flesh of the slug as fast it could reform itself. The thing tried to take advantage of the smaller space by seeping its gooey flush between stones and blindsiding Hunter. Silver colored blasts erupted against the stones as the Silver Guardian fired expertly at each one. Jinn yelled at Hunter to strike at the crimson heart swimming inside the slug. Hunter dug his talons deep into the slug’s oozing matter until he was able to rip open a sizeable cavity where the heart was trying to defend itself. The tether was still lodged in it and the strap was tangled up in its insides making it difficult to move out of the way. Grinning, Hunter waved his finger at it as if shaming it before plunging the sword right through the heart. The beast shrieked and wailed and its body rippled. The golden mass began to turn black and oily as it pooled at their feet before completely dissolving away. Splinterbark was still somewhat dazed from the impact; but enough to know Silver was holding her a bit too tight. She slid out of arms and assured him she was fine despite his frantic questioning. The victory was a bit short lived as the sound of clapping filled the small area. “Well well well, what do we have here? So you’re the ones Goldie was talking about.” Black Guardian was leaning against the entrance to the larger chamber. It was unclear with his half-smile if he was annoyed, amused, or disappointed. “I’ve been wondering whose been committing the terrible crime of murderer against my little beasties. Up until now, you’ve managed to keep yourself under my sights. But thanks to the Guardian here, I can finally see your face. Won’t you come out into the light so I can see you better?” “Ooooh those are youuuuuurrrsss”, Hunter crowed. “I hope you start stepping things up. I’m starting to get bored. No really, it’s not as much fun anymore. And if you want a look at my gorgeous façade, you’re going to have to come over and see for yourself.” The curious attitude of Hunter raised an eyebrow. He then turned his attention to Silver. “And you’re the new Guardian in town I hear. I better put you out of your misery now.” His body became enveloped in a violent purple haze that spiraled from his body and lashed out at the group. Jinn was just barely able to pull forth a shield that took most of the blast. It was not exactly enough though and some silvers of magic pierced though. One grazed across Frix’ head and both he and Splinterbark yelped. Splinterbark could feel a slight trickle of blood pooling against the sides of her helmet and dribble down one eye. When the smoke had cleared, Black Guardian was seen running off into one of the side alleys from the central hollow. He had not completely let go of his animosity of Hunter, but it was clear this black winged angel was the greater threat at the moment. Silver dashed after the Black Guardian even as Splinterbark was yelling for him to halt. The tunnel that Silver had followed Black into was a bit wider and the walls taller than where they had encountered the slug. There was no sign of the Black Guardian and the area was eerily silent. “You were actually stupid enough to follow me”, Black’s voice echoed inside the space. Black thorns shot from the ground and barricaded both sides of the tunnel. Silver felt chill gust of wind rush past his shoulder. There was a slight sound of metal against stone before he felt the impact of something thin and round against his abdomen. Black dove in front of him, effortlessly catching his shield as it fell and then decking Silver with a left cross to the head. Silver’s body spun in the air for a moment before Black kicked him hard into the walls. The gray angel bounced against the stone and crumbled to the floor. Black stood over him and grabbed the boy by the collar. “Why would the ring choose a whelp like you? Anyone can see you’re stubborn, prideful, and selfish; absolutely unworthy of being a Guardian.” Silver fired a quick shot in the air though he missed Black entirely. A small bit of rubble collapsed above and stuck Black in the wings. It was just enough to tilt him back so that Silver could grab him around the chest and hurl the angel away across the tunnel. Silver tried to belt him, but Black was quick to catch the blow. He forced Silver forward and rammed his elbow hard into Silver’s chest. “You can’t even survive against me. And you think you can protect this city?” Black had Silver pinned down and rammed his shield hard into Silver’s wrist where the ring was attached. Even with his durability, he could feel Black applying the pressure to try and sever the bone. “You are just a pathetic little child playing dress up in daddy’s clothes. You’re not worthy of the name Silver Guardian.” Silver cringed and tried to wrench himself from the floor, but Black had him restrained too well. “Oh ho, did I touch a nerve? I will have your ring, boy. Even if I have to sever it from your dislocated hand!” There was a flash of green and something knocked against Black’s eyes. He barely opened them when something shattered before him and he grasped his face as something stung his eyes and nose. A burst of magic blasted before him and forced Black to stagger back. He heard the shuffling of feet splashing of water; but the stinging sensation blinded him. When he could finally open his eyes, Silver was gone. He glanced at his gloves to see specks of pine clinging to the cloth. Black Guardian howled in frustration. He was not through yet. He had one more trick and this time the city itself was going to bring that Silver Guardian down for good. Silver bowed an apology to Hunter. He still hated him, but there was little excuse for his behavior. “Yeah sure fine. But let me make one thing clear; we do not need you around here. Jinn and I can do just fine without your help. Do not spoil my hunt again”, Hunter threatened. Silver took Splinterbark home; apologizing the whole time. He would not tell her why he acted the way he did, despite her pressing. Eventually she gave up. When he had left, Shelly asked Frix about the peculiar thing that happened that night. Why was it when he got hurt, she felt it as well? Frix shook his head. “I am afraid I do not know why to that one. You are not the first mortal I’ve bonded with. Perhaps it is because the stone was shattered in such a way that there is no safeguards. Or our bond is corrupted in some way. Either way, I shall make sure keep myself out of harm. It’s not like I can use what my magic was formally myself at the moment.” **** Mr. Blackbird had sent notice to their homeroom teacher that he wanted to see them right away. As soon as the pair sat down, Blackbird slammed the palm of his hand on the desk and demanded to know what happened. Reed just squeaked a ‘sorry’. “Sorry? Sorry?! That is all you have to say? Both of you disobeyed my orders. You, Shelly, were supposed to hold back until Reed could get there. And Reed, you let your emotions run off and it almost got you and Shelly killed! What the hell happened?” “Y-yes sir. I…I should not have done what I did”, Reed gasped again. “You were lucky this time, but next time you may up paying a price you cannot undo”, Blackbird bellowed. “Until I give the word, there will be no field work for either of you. And if I find out you disregarded my orders I will personally see to it Caine takes you down! Do I make myself clear?!” “Yes sir”, Shelly and Reed acknowledged. Blackbird dismissed them to their next class and slowly lowered himself back into his chair. From a drawer he pulled out a photo of a girl dressed in a spider pattern mini dress and standing gleefully next to a suit of bird-like armor. He inhaled deeply and swallowed a couple upcoming tears. He was not going to let it happen again even if the city paid the penalty for it.
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