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#Give YouThe Pizza Fix
cowboysaurus · 3 months ago
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We Give YouThe Pizza Fix
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absolutechurch · 16 days ago
Building a Profit From The Cheerleading Fundraiser
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As a cheerleader fundraiser organizer, it's important that you learn how to market a cheerleading fundraiser to your pupils. One thing you want to remember when you're selling any kind of fundraising thing is you will raise much more money in the event that you also offer other options. For instance, if you're performing a mix bag fundraiser which uses the traditional order-taker's booklet model, you definitely should offer a discount pizza card that provides a year's worth of two-for-a-piece pizza deals instead of merely a single piece. This strategy will make sure that your fundraiser sales keep climbing since you're also reaching a broader customer base and you can easily sell more products in the future if you choose to expand your organization.
One other great fundraising event for your cheerleading group is a car wash fundraiser. Even though a car wash design does not do very nicely with major events like sports matches and other major fundraisers, it is an excellent alternative for smaller school fundraisers. This is because almost everyone owns a vehicle and the majority of people who don't have cars actually have a tailgate grill. That means there's an endless supply of car wash fundraisers for just about any school event, and it's an excellent option for cheerleading because it is something that the cheerleaders can perform while they're on campus. Additionally, it makes for a fun affair, because it is possible to choose from a variety of fun colors and layouts baseball fundraiser.
There are many other cheerleading fundraisers which also do really well. One great example is a cheer clinic that sells really affordable tickets to local clinics for children who must be fitted for cheerleading uniforms. You could even combine this fundraiser with a car wash fundraiser to increase your total profit. These two events work great together because cheerleading coaches can give their athletes uniform fittings before the games and this will make them in shape before the season starts. Many kids are excited about their forthcoming season and a great cheer practice really can take up their spirits until the season begins.
There are other youth group fundraising ideas that do very well. One of these ideas is the sell membership cards that enable you to market a fixed number of cards for a fixed cost. These cards generally cost less than one faculty game ticket. Some of those other cards that could sell very well are soccer balls, lanyards, sweatbands and more.
As you can see, there are a lot of good ways to make a profit from your next cheerleading fundraiser event. Just make sure you select something which individuals will buy again which will also benefit the youth sports teams. Choreographers are also great at selling things, so think about getting your cheerleading staff to make some flyers then selling those items at an upcoming school fundraiser. This will be sure to generate a lot of extra revenue, especially since you can often get discounts for bulk purchases.
Another fantastic way to create a profit from any one of these fundraisers is to offer your cheerleading fundraiser customers the chance to purchase a flower bulb fundraiser. If folks purchase these flower bulbs in your fundraiser, they are going to have the ability to buy a front needed item. On the other hand, the bulk order will not be necessary. This usually means that you will not have to put any extra money to pay for your inventory. Remember that flower bulb fundraisers typically last for approximately four months, so if your college or youth group is planning one shortly, now is definitely the time to begin. Check out these other fundraising products which you could use for the next fundraiser for even more ideas on how to make a profit.
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turtletitle09 · a month ago
The Highest 10 On-line Star Wars Games For Youths
A young teen boy calls to get a mum for his girlfriend for homecoming or a corsage for prom or roses for Valentines-. You get a call from a referral, or yellow web page advert. Without the magnet, he would have called AAAAmandas Flowers in the telephone book. Had the client been left with a refrigerator magnet, had the service tech actually physically went and put it on this prospects fridge the last time he was over, the number can be right there waiting for him. “Oh, nicely,” he instructed himself, “its been a good career, till now.” Then he known as, “Anybody left on board? If anyone has obtained any situation, query, or something to share then the best place is to verify the free multiplayer on-line BattleDawn sport forum to see if some others are additionally facing the identical points. You present up, fix the problem the customer is pleased with the work youve accomplished, the value you charged, and then you definately or one in every of your service technicians leaves. When a number of service individuals serve requests from the identical shopper this is required. Individuals are unlikely to notice that one is lacking. Sounds will begin to break our ears at eighty five dBSPL and sounds above approximately 130 dBSPL will cause ache, as a result are recognized because the: "threshold of ache". In fact again this range will vary amongst people and will change with age. The Second Age of Tamriel should evoke a range of images for players devoted to the saga history. User in turn can review the history of the doc modifying - who, when and where is the change - Opening Activity, the place document is "hooked up", and in reality positioned into MS SharePoint Document Library, and urgent opening button, MS CRM user gets stay model of the data - This strategy allows you seamless work with MS CRM doc in the entire informational house of your organization - Further enhancements to this product might be document library administration instantly from MS CRM (internet interface - which means remotely), administrative interface for MS Sharepoint documents revision, potential to create reviews on the document storage standing, rights/access administration (Writer, Reader, Contributor and so forth) from MS CRM, portal pages integration into MS CRM to name a number of. This can be put to history with the option to look at NFL video games free on-line. Even higher: you can play an enormous chunk of it for free. It pulls your enterprise down, even if revenue will increase. This vary of course varies between individuals, and goes down as are age will increase. Love Age of Empires. Table, storing the links to the paperwork sits in separate database and would not deal with MS CRM tables (you realize that you're banned to do construction changes in MS CRM db) - Doc saving into MS SharePoint course of happens in MS CRM and with its assistance – SharePoint bridge, which does addition and replace for the prevailing document into vacation spot Document Library with MS SharePoint Net Services calls - Upon the addition into Doc Library, MS CRM – SharePoint bridge registers the document in the special desk for the future knowledge extraction or notification mechanism registration - Then, involved customers can work with the paperwork simply using MS Office 2003 or other applications/modifying tools, assuming these tools have entry to MS SharePoint - Feedback is offered by MS SharePoint Event Handler element. He calls the number and places his order. Domino's Pizza is infamous for giving out a magnet with deliveries that features their brand and the phone number of the local store. He remembers the “free delivery” comment on the magnet of your shop, and goes proper to it. Trust me; his immediate thought goes to flowers. The previous faithful, the default at any time, flowers. What if this time, hes going to want his full a/c unit changed? Earlier it was not so smooth going for the punters as a consequence of lack of knowledge regarding the system and hence there used to stay a gap within the proceedings. Hes going to have them delivered to her work. I have one shopper that does this, hes in real property. Thats one heck of a sale to miss out on. Take Check Out This Information of risks towards what you want- Your life can be richer from the inside out!
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girlboss-molina · 2 months ago
Be Who You Are (No Compromise)
A Julie and the Phantoms Modern Royalty AU
Chapter 6: Growing Pains
AO3 Link
Words: 16340
Alex POV
Alex was surprisingly calm. The pressed white dress shirt was cool against his skin, the slim-fitting blue vest with subtle gold embroidery a calming pressure over his chest. He was anxious, of course, but not nearly as much as he would’ve expected, given the situation. He felt free, light…
And then he was drowning.
His lungs closed, refusing the air he tried to gulp down, throwing away a lifeline. Everything burned, like fiery needles stabbing into him at the speed of sound, not enough to bleed but somehow even more painful. His vision blurred, dizziness or tears, he couldn’t tell. He couldn’t hear his own breathing, or lack thereof, over the pounding of his heart in his ears. Everything was wrong. 
Then, the pounding of his heart silenced, his head felt lighter than air. He couldn’t move. He felt like he was in a cloud, no, like he was a cloud, floating in the sky but losing parts of himself as he passed, unable to control what happened, a bystander left helpless to watch havoc. 
Alex tried to move, tried to think, but his brain felt like ice, flaming with shivers as he shook, his lungs leaving no room for air between the panic. 
Something is going to go wrong, he thought. He had a feeling in his gut that fueled his panic, telling him that someone would get hurt tonight, or that something horrible would happen, a feeling he couldn’t shake no matter how unrealistic it might’ve been. He knew Caleb wouldn’t try anything at the ball. It was a huge event, and tons of people would be there. 
He couldn’t sort out his thoughts, though, so he had no choice but to let this panic attack run its course. It felt surreal but painfully there, like when you’re so cold that you feel like you’re on fire. His hands shook, and he barely registered the salty tears coating his lips as he paced across the floor, back and forth until there was a groove in the rug. 
He made his way back to his bed, shaking, barely able to get the breath to fake three sneezes. He almost worried that it didn’t work, but then his door opened, Luke abandoning his post and sinking down next to him. He felt Luke’s arms wrap around him, and the touch immediately grounded him. Rather than a helpless cloud, he was the icy snow crusting the tops of the mountains behind the palace, unable to do anything but laying a foundation for something. And as Luke’s hands traced circles on his shoulder blades, he became the water rushing down the cliff sides, rapid and unpredictable, his breathing quickening but the panic subsiding. And when Luke pressed a gentle, calming kiss to his temple, Alex’s breathing finally slowed, his lungs letting in the air they so craved, and he calmed as the rushing water flowed into a clear pond, each reassuring touch from his best friend like a lily floating on the surface. 
He could hear, finally aware of Luke’s soft whispers of “it’ll be okay,” and “just breathe.” 
“Sorry,” he choked out, seeing Luke shake his head out of the corner of his eye.
“Don’t be,” he said. “This is a nerve-racking thing. I’m super nervous too.”
“Could’ve fooled me,” Alex said dryly, wiping his tears. 
“Really?” Luke challenged, a quiver in his voice, extending a hand in front of Alex, which was trembling. “You’re not alone, I promise.”
“Thanks.” Alex tore a hand through his hair, taking his turn to wrap Luke in a hug and let him let out his emotions. He felt him shake against his chest, but his breathing stayed relatively even. Alex was never great at the whole physical contact thing. His parents were never touchy, to the point where hugs were always a rarity. But Luke was a touchy person, and soon Alex was comfortable with his spontaneous embraces and casual, platonic affection. 
“Okay,” Luke finally said. “It’s almost time. Let’s get ourselves fixed up.” Alex nodded, squeezing him tighter before letting go. They both wandered to the bathroom, gently wiping their faces of tears and fixing their hair. Alex tugged on his sleeves, eliminating any wrinkles, and readjusted his snug vest. 
“Okay,” he breathed. “I’m ready.”
“Me too.”
They both knew it was a lie. But their steps were steady as they walked to the ballroom. 
The food was delicious, especially the dessert, and Alex’s cheeks flushed as he wondered if Willie had made it. The expertly piped frosting seemed familiar, and he was almost sure that it was he who had carefully crafted it. 
And if he got emotional over a beautifully piped flower because of the slight possibility that it was made by his crush, no he didn’t. 
Eventually, the dancing started, and Alex had to suffer through. He plastered on an unconvincing smile and did his best to waltz around the ballroom with random Nobility who were chatting non-fucking-stop about how excited he must be for the marriage, and how was he liking it in Dahlia, and did he mind the cold, and what his relationship with Julie was like. Soon, he’d had it, and made some lame excuse about feeling a bit light-headed. Thankfully, he’d been able to ditch them and sit down along the side of the room. 
Reggie plopped down next to him, sitting sideways with his arm draped over the back of the chair. 
“Tired of the Nobles prying?” he assumed. Alex nodded, snorting. 
“I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that they have no gaydar, but it’s still super annoying being asked about my supposed girlfriend,” he added. “But playing heterosexual is still a pain in the ass.”
“Tell me about it,” Reggie agreed. “Every time I have an interview, it’s all, ‘any special lady in your life?’ or ‘have you taken an interest in any ladies of different kingdoms?’ but never ‘what’s your favorite pizza topping’ or ‘why are you the amazing bisexual that you are?’” Alex nodded sarcastically. 
“Of course.” 
“I know I joke,” Reggie added, “but I feel for you, man. It must be super hard.” 
“Yeah. And I do appreciate the attempts to lighten the mood, too.”
“That’s what I’m here for.” 
It was nearly eleven when the screaming started. 
Alex’s heart jumped to his throat, his stomach plummeted, and he simultaneously felt like everything was happening at once, and like it was moving in slow motion.
He remembered the sound of people running. Cries of the few children in attendance. Shouts of furious Nobility. Hushed, terrified breathing of the council members. Caleb’s velvety, disgusting voice as he lounged on Ray’s throne. The pounding of his heart in his ears. 
But what he remembered most vividly was the glint of the daggers pressed against each of the council members’ throats. 
“Why?” someone asked. It took a few seconds for Alex to realize that he was the one who’d spoken. Caleb quirked an eyebrow and gave him the side-eye.
“Why what?” Alex was shocked by his sudden swell of angry confidence. 
“You know damn well what I mean. Why are you doing this? We’ve been allies for a century, and you’re going to try to overthrow us and put daggers at the throats of our council members?”
“You know, Alexander, it really is adorable how you talk about Dahlia as if it’s your country. You are, until the wedding, the Tamborian prince.” Caleb twirled an extra dagger around his fingers. 
“That doesn’t change the fact that what you’re doing is wrong, and you know it. You just want more power, clearly, but do you really think people will stand for this and accept you as their leader? Do you really think that anyone with half a mind will be okay with this?”
“Alexander, the beauty of youth also comes with naivete. I wouldn’t expect you to understand yet. But the fact of the matter is that, in life, you must deal with growing pains. This will all be for the better.”
“No,” Julie interrupted, “it won’t. There is a huge difference between growing pains and whatever the hell you’re trying to do, and you know it.” 
Before Alex could add to what she said, he saw the back door of the ballroom open silently, revealing Lilian - the tall, dark-haired woman he’d met when looking for Willie - stalking in, a gleaming knife in her hand. She was followed by a short, plump woman with purple hair, a line of various chefs and bakers, each armed with metal frying pans, and-
He tried to hide the fear in his eyes as Willie walked in, his brow furrowed and hands steady, wrapped around the knife in his hand. But when their eyes met, and Alex tried to give him the tiniest of head shakes, Willie mouthed something that Alex couldn’t make out before Caleb spoke again.
“I can see you’re all a bit tense,” he said silkily, “so here’s how this will go. Ray here is going to surrender, and I’ll let your precious council members live.” 
Alex watched as the group behind Lilian - thankfully not including Willie - silently lined up behind the seven Kryptonians holding daggers to the council. They made eye contact with one another before simultaneously bringing their frying pans down on their heads as hard as they could, causing everyone to erupt in shouts and screams, some of joy, some of rage, some of fear. Caleb’s head snapped over, and then Lilian spoke. 
“Or,” she said smoothly, “you could surrender, and go back to your own country.” She had the knife trained on his back, the blade gleaming in the lantern-lit room. Willie was in front of Caleb, popping out from behind the throne. Alex’s heart couldn’t decide if it wanted to pound louder or silence itself completely as he saw the terror in Willie’s eyes that he tried to mask. 
“Don’t hurt these people,” Willie said, his voice steadier than Alex would’ve expected. 
“A few bakers trying to save their precious leaders,” Caleb purred, but the malice in his voice was like venom. “How sweet. Unfortunately for you, I have this”- he pulled a small remote out of his pocket -”and while I would rather not use it, I will if I must.” Alex’s stomach dropped. 
A bomb.
“That’s right,” Caleb said over the terrified screams, people running for the doors. “If any of you here have any sense, you’ll run. You shouldn’t have to, of course, but if your leaders continue to be stubborn, it might be for the best.”
“You’re bluffing,” someone called from the audience. “You’re in this room too.”
“Am I?” Caleb challenged, and Alex’s face warped with confusion, until he saw a flicker. 
A hologram. 
“Yes,” Caleb remarked. “You probably didn’t notice my brief trip to the restroom earlier, but that wasn’t actually a restroom trip. I’m far away by now.”
“But what about your representatives?” Reggie asked. 
“Acceptable losses. These aren’t actually representatives, they’re criminals who have been offered the chance of a full pardon if things don't go south. They have, however, been made very clear of the other possibility.” Alex noticed one of them tremble. 
“You might notice that your king is not in the room,” Caleb added, and Alex’s face reddened with fury. 
“What did you do to my dad?” Julie shouted, her hands clenched in fists, shaking. 
“He’s alive, if that’s what you’re worried about,” Caleb said. “But I guarantee that, should I press this button, he’ll be in the line of fire.”
Furious shouts echoed in the huge room, and Alex watched as Julie stepped up to the royals’ table. 
“Leave my people alone.” The words were cold, harsh, but clear and steady. “Get out of our kingdom. You have no place here.”
“Yeah,” Reggie interjected. “We’re not going to abandon our people, no matter how much you want us to.” 
“You can’t make us surrender,” Luke informed him. Alex nodded, standing as tall as he could. 
“I truly hate to do this,” Caleb said, without an ounce of sorrow in his voice. “But you leave me no choice.” 
“NO,” Alex yelled, his eyes flicking from Luke to Julie to Carlos to Willie to Reggie, trying to find all of them and get them out of here.
“I’m sorry, everyone,” Caleb added maliciously. Everyone was running and screaming, bustling through the doors, 
“Everyone get out of here, now!” Luke’s voice echoed throughout the ballroom, and Alex barely saw him run after Julie. Reggie ran out another door, and Alex searched for Willie. 
At least thirty seconds had to have passed, searching the ballroom and crowded hallways, ushering people out.
“WILLIE!” his voice was louder than he’d ever known it could be, and he shouted a couple more times, finally meeting a dark brown gaze, panicked and full of all the words they’d left unsaid. Everything moved in slow motion, his legs like lead and air as he sprinted towards him.
The shockwave knocked him backwards, leaving him deaf and blind, barely registering when his back hit the ground, not even noticing the air forced out of his lungs. Alex felt like he was floating, every nerve in his body stretched along a cloud of light.
If this is dying, he thought, it’s not so bad. People don’t need to be so scared. 
His mind was trapped in a void of dark brights, blinding and comforting at the same time, like he was hovering in an endless state of between. Between fire and ice, ground and sky, life and death. He floated, wondering just how long it had been. It felt like minutes but it couldn’t have been, because that was only the shockwave.
Because then came the fire. 
The heat licked at his skin, and Alex was snapped back to reality. 
He wasn’t sure if he was burning or if it was just the air around him, which was now thick with smoke and dust. Bits of debris scattered all around, and he only saw Willie’s face one more time before falling into oblivion.
When Alex awoke, the sky was dark, twinkling with stars, but the faint light of sunrise teased the horizon. He was on his back, next to a giant slab of concrete, his face covered in dust. He did his best to sit up, a sharp pain on his arm. He winced, grabbing his bicep, grimacing when his palm came away soaked with blood. And his ankle hurt when he tried to stand. He tested it, but by some miracle, it didn’t feel broken. 
He stood, shaking the dust off of him and limping around, searching for other people. 
For survivors. 
Alex’s breath caught when he saw a group of people farther down the hill. He ran to them, ignoring the pain in his ankle as he bounded down. 
He saw Reggie first. His wrist was wrapped in a bandage, and a streak of red adorned his pale forehead, but he was alive. 
“REGGIE!” he shouted, running, tears blurring his eyes. Reggie’s head snapped towards him. 
“ALEX!” he cried, standing and dashing closer. They met in a hug, collapsing in each others’ arms, sobbing into their shoulders. 
“When we didn’t find you with the survivors we thought-”
“Shh, no, I’m okay,” he said. “A little roughed up, but I’ll live.” He turned his head to the palace, hundreds of feet behind him. He had a clear view of the destruction. 
He’d really underestimated the size of the palace. The ballroom was in the bottom right corner, and was blown to bits. More of the palace was scorched and crumbling, but it appeared the left half had been preserved, somehow. 
“Where’s everyone else?” he asked, refusing to give in to the panic rising in his chest. “Are they okay?”
“Julie’s with Carlos and Ray over where I was,” Reggie said. 
“Wait, Ray survived?” Relief washed over him. “But I thought-”
“I’m not sure how, but he made it,” Reggie said with an incredulous laugh, more tears running down his soot-covered face. “And Erik, Mira, Flynn and Carrie are also okay, same with Luke.” Alex sighed, smiling despite himself. They’d survived. 
“ALEX!” his head snapped to Luke’s voice, and he ran to him, once again ignoring the pain in his ankle. Luke tackled him with a hug despite the sling around his arm. “We thought you were-”
“I’m okay,” he said. “I’m okay.” 
Alex ran through the gardens, offering quick aid to anyone he could. But he was only half-paying attention, which might’ve made him the worst prince ever. But he needed to find Willie. 
He searched, tears blurring his eyes as he made his way to the last place he needed to search, but also the one he was dreading. 
As he ran into the park, he searched the lawn and sidewalks, nearly dying of relief when he saw Willie, sitting in the middle of the field, his knees hugged to his chest…
Shaking with sobs. 
“Willie!” he called, racing over. Willie’s head snapped up, his eyes red and puffy. His face went from shock to happiness to confusion to incredulity within half a second, and he stood, shaking and walking to Alex. 
A swell of confidence, probably tied with a huge rush of adrenaline, sent Alex running forward, wrapping Willie in a hug, who sobbed into his shoulder. Soon, Alex was crying too. 
“I’m sorry,” Willie whispered shakily. Alex shook his head. 
“No,” he said. “No, I’m sorry, I don’t know what I was doing, I should’ve grabbed you and ran…” His eyes met Willie’s, and he leaned a little closer, his heart racing until he was just a hairsbreadth away. 
Then, when Willie didn’t pull away, he pressed their lips together. 
Willie’s lips tasted like chocolate and salty tears, chapped and warm. He kissed back almost immediately, Willie’s hands tangling in Alex’s hair, Alex’s arms around his waist, pulling him closer. It might not have been a movie-worthy kiss, between the sobs, soot, and blood, but Alex couldn’t think, too caught up in the euphoria of Willie being alive, and of kissing him. 
It couldn’t have been more than a few seconds when they came up for air, foreheads pressed together. 
“When you weren’t with the survivors, I-” Willie choked off into another sob. “I thought I’d lost you,” he finally whispered. Alex shook, hugging him tighter. 
“You’ll never lose me.” 
Julie POV
Julie smoothed the front of her violet ball gown, letting the layers of tulle float gently to the floor. Straightening the silky bodice, her hands shook with anxiety, but she didn’t let herself succumb to it. The gown was identical to the one she’d worn to the welcome feast a week ago, only rather than navy blue, this one was violet. Otherwise, though, it was the same; a silky, strapless dress with layers of tulle, one layer going over her chest and collarbone in a halter neckline. However, while the blue one had tiny starlike diamonds sewn into the skirt, this one had no jewels, but the tulle halter was embroidered with dahlia designs. 
She walked to her vanity, twisting her hair into two braids, tying them together and letting the rest of her hair poof at the base of her neck. She drew her eyeliner into a small, sharp wing, brushed on mascara, and painted her lips with a shimmery gloss. She massaged a bit of lotion into her arms and spritzed some perfume into the air, walking through the mist so that it was subtle. 
Her low heels made quiet tapping noises as she walked across her bathroom, examining her reflection to make sure she looked perfect. 
Once she’d made sure her dress wasn’t crooked and that her eyeliner was even, Julie sat on the foot of her bed and grabbed her phone. The time read 19:44. 16 minutes until the ball. 
A knock on her door drew her attention. 
“Come in.” She gave a weak smile when her dad walked through the doorway. 
“Hey, mija,” he said, “you okay?” Julie shrugged.
“I’m not sure,” she admitted. “I’m nervous, but also just anxious to get this over with. With any luck, it’ll go well, and Caleb will revoke his declaration.”
“That’s the plan,” Ray agreed. A wistful smile spread on his face, and his eyes turned glassy. 
“You look beautiful,” he told her. Julie smiled.
“Your mother had a dress just like that,” he added. “You look just like her.” Julie stood, blinking back a tear as she hugged him. He squeezed back, finally letting go with a sigh. 
“Everything will be okay.”
“Here’s hoping. And if not, we’ll make it.” Ray nodded, his expression unreadable as he left, closing her door, almost seeming like he wasn’t sure if it was true.
Right at that moment, Julie decided that it would be. If things went south, no matter what, she would fight to make sure they all made it out alive. She would fight in any way she had to if it meant her family stayed safe.
She would fight, and she would win.
As she walked into the ballroom, she found her assigned seat, in the center of the long royal table, just beside her father. To her right was Luke, then Alex, Carrie, Flynn, Erik, Mira, and Carlos. To her left, after Ray, was Reggie, Councilwoman Noah, Councilman Richard, Councilperson Aster, Councilwoman Mei Lin, Councilwoman Anika, Councilman Ryan, and Councilman Trevor. 
The council members weren’t technically royalty, but they were the next tier of leaders in Dahlia, and the royal table was very long, so they got to sit there as well. 
Around the perimeter, circular tables were arranged with white tablecloths draping over them, and as the Dahlian Nobility flooded in, many of the seats filled. Soon, though, King Covington arrived.
He was dressed in a black three-piece, a black and violet cloak over his shoulders. His top hat was still perched on his expertly-styled hair, and his blue eyes pierced Julie’s before travelling to Ray. Ray stood, his face neutral. Covington took off his hat and pressed it to his chest, dipping in an elaborate bow. 
“It is an honor to be here, King Molina,” he purred. “I do hope we can resolve this quickly.”
“As do I. Hopefully it will be easy. We have been allies for over a century, after all.” Covington’s smile morphed into a sneer.
“Indeed.” He flourished to his table, Kryptonian representatives right behind him, as they arranged themselves. Ray cleared his throat, and Julie took a deep breath. 
“Welcome,” he said, “to the ball. This event is a celebration of allyship, a hope for peace, and a symbol of unity amongst our people. I hope all of you in attendance will find yourselves comfortable. Please, do not hesitate to speak up if you are not. Now please, enjoy the feast.”
Soft chatter echoed in the grand room, the clicking of cutlery on plates ringing in Julie’s ears. She did her best to focus on her food, but her eyes kept flicking to Covington. He was very shady. She couldn’t decide if he was always like that, or if something was off tonight, but he spoke in hushed tones to his representatives, glancing furtively around the room. Julie turned back to her food.
“How are you holding up?” Luke’s voice snapped her out of her daze. 
“Alright,” she said after a moment. “You?”
It was a lie, of course. Neither of them were alright, but they had to pretend to be. 
Julie noticed Luke’s eyes flicker to Caleb. 
“Something seems off,” he murmured. “I’m not sure if he’s always like this, but my gut tells me something’s wrong.”
“I had the same feeling,” Julie admitted, looking at her food so people wouldn’t notice her occasional glances to Covington and Luke. 
“Hey, dad?” she asked after a moment, her voice hushed. Ray looked at her. 
“Something’s wrong.”
“What do you mean?”
“I mean, my gut is telling me that something bad is going to happen. Look at Covington,” she added when he looked skeptical. “He’s glancing around like he expects someone to sneak up on him, and he’s hunched. He looks so secretive, but he’s usually flamboyant.”
“Hmm,” Ray murmured. “You’re right, he is acting strange. But I’m sure everything’s fine, mija.” He patted her hand. “Your dad’s got this.” Julie offered half a smile in reply, but met Luke’s eyes nervously. 
“I’m sure it’ll be okay,” he finally said. “He’s probably plotting what ridiculous outfit he’ll wear tomorrow.” The joke lightened the mood, and Julie giggled. Luke smiled, biting his lip to hold back a laugh. 
They finished their dinner, and then, the mingling began. Dessert would be brought up soon, but this was an opportunity for everyone to stand and walk around to see other people. Julie roamed the room, shaking hands and speaking cordially with the Nobility, exchanging a couple jokes with Lady Cadence. 
When butlers brought dessert from the kitchens, Julie gave a friendly curtsy to the people around her before making her way back to the table. The dessert was a mixture of mini red velvet cupcakes, piped with cream cheese frosting, and beautifully decorated cakes. Thin layers of fondant gave them warm pastel coloring, and frosting had been piped into flowers and swirls. 
She helped herself to a slice of cake, but didn’t finish it. Nerves were taking up more room in her stomach than she’d thought. So, she opted to sip her water, scanning the crowd. She noticed Lady Amara holding hands with Lady Sierra and smiled. She’d known they’d liked each other, so that warmed her heart. 
Soon, everyone had finished dessert, and the music volume increased, slow and rhythmic. People made their way to the dance floor with partners, waltzing around gracefully. Julie smiled as Carrie dragged Flynn over, spinning her around and catching her. Flynn protested but laughed. 
Soon, Julie was twirling around the dance floor, making idle chatter as she slowly waltzed with kind Nobility, talking cordially about political affairs. 
As she sat down on one of the free chairs at the edge of the ballroom, she sighed. Thankfully, everything seemed to be going well. She smoothed the tulle of her dress, fixing a curl back into a braid, when Luke’s voice caught her attention.
“My lady,” he said with a grin, dipped in a bow. “May I have this dance?” Julie stifled a laugh. He was such a dork. But she nodded, putting her hand in his and letting him pull her closer, hoping she hid her shiver when he gently placed his hand on her waist, the other holding her hand up as they danced.
“I’m surprised at how well this has gone so far,” he told her. She couldn’t help but nod, making sure nobody was paying attention.
“I half suspected Caleb would’ve tried something by now.” 
“But I still have a nagging feeling in my gut,” Julie admitted. Luke nodded, quiet for a moment. It wasn’t an uncomfortable silence, though. They held each other's gaze, and Julie’s hand felt right at home on his shoulder as she swayed. 
“There’s nothing to do about it now, though,” Luke reasoned, and Julie smiled, grinning wider when he twirled her. Her heart fluttered, but sank when Luke frowned. Half of his smile returned.
“We should probably trade off, now,” he sighed. Julie nodded disappointedly. Nobody could suspect that they didn’t want to go along with the arranged marriage. And besides, Luke might like her, but probably not how she liked him. He just cared about people’s reputations. 
She gave half a smile and twirled again, before someone took her wrist. 
“Your highness, may I have this dance?” The sickening voice of Caleb Covington filled Julie’s ears, and she wanted nothing more than to rip away from his clammy clutch and walk away. But this was for diplomacy, so she suppressed her shudder and offered a smile.
“Of course.”
“You know,” Covington said silkily, “this is a beautiful palace.” Julie nodded.
“Yes, I believe your grandfather helped my great-grandfather design it once we became allies,” she pointed out. “It has architectural properties that were inspired by Kryptonian styles, but was also its own thing.”
“Yes, one might say that,” Caleb agreed. “But, isn’t it ironic that my own grandfather, who was the king of the most prolific country in the world, held no reservations against designing a palace for a new ‘country’ that never should have existed?” Julie bit back a sarcastic remark. 
“With all due respect, your majesty”- she twirled, grateful for the moment without Caleb’s hand on her waist -”At that time, Dahlia had already been founded over a century earlier, and relations had stabled. Our resources were significant, and our citizens had settled in an unoccupied land. The Dahlian revolution was a revolution purely because Krypto’s king at the time was too stubborn in the years before his passing to let go.”
“You’ve studied your history, I see,” Caleb remarked. 
“I have been raised for this,” Julie agreed with half a smile, but it wasn’t genuine. “Your grandfather ascended over a century ago, and his goal was always peace, which was why he worked so hard to forge an allyship between Krypto and Dahlia. Relations have been stable between us ever since. We would rather keep it that way.”
“You know,” Caleb said with a click, “the funny thing about running a country is that you must always aim for growth. In that growth lies certain… growing pains, shall we say? Krypto is destined for greatness, and Dahlia is the rebellious teenager who was once an obedient child, and will soon be the respectful adult with familial ties.”
“Or,” Julie countered smoothly, “if you’re so set on growth, you could expand on uninhabited land. More resources means more wealth, and more land means more growth for your borders and space for your people. Holding onto a grudge that was resolved before you were born will only hold you back.”
She knew the words were risky, and might be perceived as disrespectful, but Caleb’s smirk grew into a laugh.
“My dear Julie, you are too smart for your own good. And yet,” he added, “there is still so much you don’t understand. You’re so young, I wouldn’t expect you to understand it in the first place.”
“Sir, with all due respect, I am just as qualified as anyone else in this room.” 
“But you don’t know what it’s like to lead a country on your own-”
“And I’ll never have to, because I have the sense to not distance myself from my people.”
“You’re marching into dangerous territory,” Covington warned, but Julie didn’t care. 
“Like I said,” she said with finality, “our goal is to resolve things peacefully and go back to our allyship. Please enjoy the ball.”
Julie had taken her chance to escape Caleb, and she was grateful that she did, because she got room to breathe, and got to hang out with her friends. 
She danced with Alex, chatting idly about the ball, and about a certain baker with whom Alex was absolutely smitten. She grinned to herself, asking questions to make sure that this baker was actually worthy of Alex. She knew he could be a bit… simpy, so she had to make sure she had the brain cell, and then approve of his future boyfriend. But, if Alex was to be believed, the baker - Willie, as she learned - was one of the sweetest people to ever walk the Earth, just shy of Reggie. So, Julie took his word for it. 
She twirled, letting the skirt of her dress flare outwards. 
“Okay, bro, that dress is amazing,” Alex noted. “It looks like the one you wore last week.”
“That’s because it is! Well, the same style at least. It’s a different color.”
“Well, same or different, it looks great.”
“Thanks,” she said with a grin. She noticed Alex’s eyes flicking around the room, scanning the people as if he was searching for someone.
“Looking for someone?” she asked, a shit-eating grin on her face. Alex’s face turned bright red as he stammered in denial. Julie laughed. 
“You know what? We’re done dancing, you can come back after you quit being an asshole,” he decided, flicking his wrist. Julie snorted; his gay panic was hilarious. 
She found herself dancing with Flynn, who gave her The Look, glancing at Luke, who was playfully dancing with Alex. They weren’t even dancing, it was more just… messing around in a rhythmic formation. But when Luke’s eyes caught Julie’s, she quickly looked away. Flynn rolled her eyes as she twirled Julie.
“Jules, I know I can’t yell at you about this since we’re at a ball, but come on. You have to know he’s absolutely smitten with you.” Julie sighed.
“Or he’s just a dork. Which is very, very possible. I mean, have you met him?”
“Then tell me why he doesn’t act like that around anybody else?”
“I don’t know,” she said. “But even if he does like me, there’s nothing we can do about it. It would be a disaster.” 
“Jules, you have to go for what you want!” Flynn took a breath as she twirled, giving an awkward smile to anybody looking their way. “Talk to your dad,” she added quietly. 
“What? Flynn, are you fucking insane?” Julie looked around; it was her turn to give an awkward smile. “I can’t tell dad about this.” 
“Can’t tell me about what?” Ray’s voice was in a normal tone and volume, but he looked concerned as he walked towards them. “Mijas, are you alright?” Julie opened her mouth, trying to speak, glancing to Flynn.
“We’re fine,” she said at last. Ray quirked an eyebrow. 
“Honey, you know I would never judge you, right?” Julie sighed, letting Flynn hand her over to dance with her dad. 
“I know. It’s just…” she couldn’t find the right words. 
“Is this about Caleb? Did he do something to you?”
“No, no,” she assured him, “it’s not about that. It’s about something else.” Her heart sank when he looked down.
“The marriage?” he asked quietly. She sighed. 
“I know.” 
“No, that’s the thing, dad, you don’t know. You know that Alex and I don’t want to get married, and I know that you tried to get us out of it, but it just hurts so much more now that…”
“No, mija, I know. You aren’t as subtle as you think.” Julie’s jaw dropped, and she stuttered for words, refusing to glance over to Luke. 
“I’m sorry,” she finally sighed, “I’m so, so sorry. This isn’t something you need added to your plate.”
“Julie, you have nothing to apologize for. I know you can’t control feelings. I’ve tried. Did I ever tell you how your mother and I met?” Julie shook her head. 
“She was about your age,” Ray began. “I met her at a cafe, while she was out in the city taking a break from being a princess. I didn’t even know it was her. But as soon as I did know, I immediately tried to ignore my feelings for her. But every time I saw her, I remembered her smile, and how kind she was when we spoke.
“Well, I would occasionally see her in person. We got to know each other, and no matter how much I tried to repress how I felt and insist that I just wanted to be friends with her, it didn’t work. But it all worked out in the end.”
“Yeah, well, Mom wasn’t in an arranged marriage. Her falling in love with you wasn’t treason.”
“Maybe, but…” Ray trailed off. “I’m still trying to get you out of it, I promise.”
“Thanks, Papá.”
“Of course. But you have my word that, should you choose to stand up and face these feelings, I will do everything in my power to keep you safe. I can’t promise that if people find out there won’t be trouble, but I’ll do anything I can.”
“Only if you extend the same courtesy to Alex,” Julie told him. “As well as whoever either of us might love.” He nodded.
“Of course, mija.” He pulled her in for a hug. “It’ll all be okay.” She nodded against his shoulder. 
“Thank you.”
Julie was exhausted. She must’ve danced with everyone in attendance, plastering on a smile and talking about whatever. But now, she could’ve collapsed and fallen asleep. 
That is, until she heard the screaming. 
Adrenaline coursed through her veins, her heart pounding in her ears as she ran to the end of the ballroom, stopping in her tracks when she saw Covington dramatically sitting in her father’s thronelike chair. He sat sideways, leaning on one armrest with his legs over the other, looking very pleased with himself. And next to him…
Next to him, all seven council members were trapped in their chairs, with daggers pressed to their throats. None of them made a sound, but the fear in their eyes was heartbreaking. Everyone in the ballroom shouted, screamed, and cried for justice.
“Like I said,” Covington shouted over the din, “you will either surrender peacefully to Kryptonian rule, or we will take it by force.”
A bomb. 
Julie could barely think. 
She took a deep breath, her hands shaking as she clenched them into fists and released, finally clearing her head. Normally she worked well under pressure, but this? This was something else entirely. 
The chaos of people shouting and running, trying to escape the ballroom gave her a chance to run for Carlos.
“JULIE!” he shouted, tears running down his face. Julie grabbed his wrist, running out the door of the ballroom. 
“I’m going to get more people out,” she said. “I want you to grab whoever you see on your way and run straight out the front gates as far as you can, okay? But-” Carlos shook his head, inhaling to interject, but Julie cut him off -”No, Carlos, listen to me. Do not try to be a hero. I want you to run as fast as you can, okay?”
Carlos finally nodded, wrapping Julie in a hug and leaving the chest of her dress soaked with tears. 
“I love you,” he choked out before running.
“I love you too,” she told him, never having meant the words more than she did in that moment. 
“Julie,” came Luke’s voice from behind her, his eyes filled with panic. 
“What are you doing?” she asked, traitorous tears finally leaking down her face. “You should be running, you should get out of here, get Alex, get Reggie, get anyone you can and get out!”
“No,” Luke said firmly, “I’m staying with you. But please, just-” 
“No! You need to get out of here! I couldn’t live with myself if something happened to you.” Luke grabbed her wrist and pulled her into a supply closet as more people ran by. Julie gasped in the dark.
“Please,” he said as her eyes adjusted. “Please, Julie. In case I don't make it, there’s something you need to know.” He took a breath, but Julie cut him off.
“No, don’t even go there.” She shook her head, letting her curls fly in the air.  
“Please,” he whispered. Julie couldn’t speak, just shaking her head. More shouts and screams echoed from the hallway. Luke’s eyes met Julie’s, and she couldn’t find the right words to describe the intensity and swirling, indescribable emotions in his eyes. 
“I’m sorry,” he said, a single tear sliding down his cheek. Then, Julie met him halfway. 
When her lips met his, they tasted salty from tears, and her arms wrapped around his waist, pulling him closer. His hand cupped her jaw, and she sank into the touch. 
“I had to do that,” he told her when they pulled away, another tear rolling down his face. “At least once.” 
Then, he ran out of the closet, nobody noticing within the chaos. Julie chased after him, running back into the mostly-empty ballroom. The Kryptonian representatives - or criminals - had let the council members go, and were running as fast as they could. A few Nobles were also running, but one line of Caleb’s kept echoing in Julie’s mind. 
“I guarantee that, should I press this button, he’ll be in the line of fire.”
Caleb was about to press the button. 
He was about to kill her father. 
“DAD!” she screamed. 
“JULIE!” it was Luke who shouted it, and Julie’s eyes blurred, spilling tears as she sobbed into his shoulder. 
“We have to get out of here,” he told her, and she nodded, running as fast as she could, her hand clasped in his. They’d made it to the front gates before the shockwave hit them, quickly followed by fire which licked at their skin, the heat making it hard to breathe; not that they were able to breathe, the shockwave having knocked the wind out of them. They flew down the steps, and Julie was barely able to roll in time to not break her neck. Luke was behind her, and she did her best to catch him as they scrambled, making it to the hill before blacking out. 
When Julie awoke, it was to her father’s voice, blinded by light and grief and hope. 
I’m dead, she thought. But the grass under her back was cold and wet and very much making a bruise form on her spine, and the whooshing air in her ears felt real as well, and the sound of people crying and talking was heartbreaking but brought her back to reality, however horrible it might’ve been. 
She blearily opened her eyes, seeing her dad and Carlos, ashen, dirty faces streaked with tears. They wrapped her in a hug, and she sobbed into their shoulders. 
“I’m here, mija.”
“But I thought you were dead! Caleb said-”
“I was able to make it out,” he assured her. “I’m a little beaten up, but I’m alive.”
“Where’s Luke?” she asked, choked up with smoke and fear. 
“Right here.” Luke’s voice was choked up, and he wrapped her in a gentle hug. She cried into his shoulder for a moment.
“He’s okay,” Carlos said. “We’re okay.” Julie cried harder, standing and collapsing into Luke’s arms, running to Reggie and Carrie and Flynn and Mira and Erik and-
“Wait,” she said, trying to convince her eyes that she’d seen wrong. 
“Where’s Alex?”
“He’s okay,” Reggie said. Julie hadn’t even noticed that he’d walked away. But now, his face was covered with happy tears, and he had Alex’s arm wrapped around his shoulder, helping him walk with a sprained ankle. Julie rushed to him and hugged him as tightly as she could, finally letting her tears break free.
They were okay. 
Luke POV
When Alex’s breathing quickened, Luke had a feeling this would be one of the worst panic attacks yet. So, it was no surprise when three fake sneezes echoed in the room, Luke was prepared to walk in and sit next to his best friend. 
He wrapped his arms around Alex, trying to calm his trembling. 
“It’s okay,” he whispered, but Alex didn’t hear him. Luke kept holding him, trying to stay steady for him, letting Alex bury his head in his shoulder. He traced circles on Alex’s shoulder blades, thankful when he calmed a bit, but his breathing was rapid and shaky. 
“Everything will be okay, Lex,” he said. “I promise.”
Luke leaned down and pressed a gentle kiss to Alex’s temple, tracing gentle circles along his shoulders. 
“Just breathe,” he whispered. “It’ll be okay.” Alex hugged him tighter, and Luke patted his back.
“Sorry,” he choked out, and Luke immediately shook his head.
“Don’t be. This is a nerve-racking thing. I’m super nervous too.” It wasn’t a lie. Luke had always been good at holding himself together when he was scared or anxious, but he was still trembling. 
“Could’ve fooled me,” Alex said dryly, wiping his tears. 
“Really?” Luke challenged, hating how his voice quivered, even though it proved his point. He showed Alex his shaking hands. “You’re not alone,” he reminded him. “I promise.”
“Thanks.” Then, it was Alex’s turn to wrap him in a hug, and Luke was surprised but comforted by it. He let himself sink into the embrace, sure he was shaking, but he didn’t care. That was his best friend, and he was warm, and Luke needed a hug. He held him tighter, shaking, finally letting go, his heart protesting the lack of hugs.
“Okay, it’s almost time. Let’s get ourselves fixed up.” Alex nodded, squeezing him tighter before letting go. Luke followed him to the bathroom, fixing his heather grey vest and readjusting his sleeves, fixing a loose strand of hair. 
Neither of them were ready, but they nodded to each other and walked to the ballroom. 
Luke was rather surprised when he saw that his assigned seat was between Julie and Alex. It would’ve made more sense for Julie to be next to Alex, since they were supposed to be getting married. Not that Luke was complaining, of course.
“How are you holding up?” he asked quietly.
“Alright,” Julie replied after hesitating. Luke knew it was a lie. “You?”
Luke’s eyes flickered to Caleb against his will. Something in his gut was nagging at him that something was wrong.
“Something seems off,” he murmured. “I’m not sure if he’s always like this, but my gut tells me something’s wrong.”
“I had the same feeling,” Julie admitted, confirming Luke’s anxieties. He did his best to calm the swelling bubble of worries in his stomach, taking another bite of his food. He heard Julie whisper to her dad, mentioning that she felt like something was off. Luke kept glancing at her, never lingering for more than a moment before looking away, usually to see if Caleb was still acting sketchy.
Of course, he was. 
Julie caught his eye, and he couldn’t ignore how nervous she looked. He bit his lip, hating how anxious this was all making her. She didn’t deserve this distress. Luke had to fight the urge to reach and take her hand; even under the table, it would be a super risky move.
“I’m sure it’ll be okay,” he finally said. “He’s probably plotting what ridiculous outfit he’ll wear tomorrow.” Luke grinned when she laughed, for once not minding the butterflies in his stomach and how his heart started doing flips when she smiled. 
When the dancing started, Julie went to the large floor, speaking cordially with Nobles, and Luke was entranced. She flitted around the room like a butterfly. Her sparkly dress caught the light as she twirled, and the violet coloring made her look like she’d been dipped in twilight, with the softness of the clouds but the ferocity of a raging hurricane, the strength of a rushing river but the gentle touch of a feathery breeze. 
Luke stood at the edge of the floor, dancing with many people, including an overeager middle school girl who was both shy and enthusiastic. He gave her a smile and moved on to the next person. 
At some point, he ended up dancing with Mira, whose shimmery aquamarine gown had flecks of gold sewn in, glinting in the light. But he kept trying to subtly spot Julie in the crowd. Mira laughed.
“Dude, you’re killing me,” she said with an exasperated grin. “Go find her and ask her to dance!” Luke shook his head.
“We’re in a public setting,” he reasoned. It definitely wasn’t because of the nerves swelling in his chest. The eye roll Mira gave him was legendary. 
“And? It’s a ball! People dance! Alex has had to dance with a ton of people already, but nobody suspects him of treason, right? So who’s to say you can’t dance with Jules?” Luke sighed. 
“I know, I know, it’s just…” he trailed off, searching for the right words as he twirled Mira. “I feel weird,” he told her. “I’m normally really confident and can just go for things, but for some reason I just… can’t. I hate this feeling,” he added. “Nervousness does not fit me.” 
“It doesn’t,” Mira agreed. “But it is sweet. And I can guarantee you that she wants to dance with you too.” Luke’s eyes widened.
“How do you know? Wait,” he said, a huge grin spreading on his face as he lowered his voice, “do you think she likes me like I like her?” He shook his head, trying to get rid of those horrible, treasonous thoughts.
“I’m not going to betray Julie’s trust,” Mira said, “but I am going to call you an oblivious, pining dumbass.” When Luke didn’t respond, she added, “get it together! Go tell her how you feel!”
“I can’t do that,” he sighed. “Even if I really, really want to. We both know what would happen, Mira.”
“I know, I just…” Mira sighed. “I hate seeing her so doubtful. She’s confident in herself, and she doesn’t need a guy to tell her she’s amazing. But watching one of my best friends wonder whether someone she’s totally gone for feels the same, asking herself why would he be, when the answer is so obvious… I just hate it. You make her happy, Patterson.” Mira twirled, giving him a knowing look. “And I know she makes you happy, too.
“Things are happening, and the situation is awful,” she told him, giving a smile and encouraging nod to the other side of the ballroom. “Make sure it’s worth it.”
And then she was gone, having vanished into the crowd, leaving Luke with a goal and a pounding heart. 
But he wasn’t a quitter, so he made his way across the room, his heart fluttering when he found Julie. 
“My lady,” he said with a grin, dipped in a bow. “May I have this dance?” 
He heard Julie laugh, briefly saw her head bounce in a nod, and then her hand was in his. Everywhere she touched felt warm and cold at the same time, and Luke smiled to himself as he pulled her closer, gently putting his hand on her waist as they danced. 
Julie’s eyes shone in the light, deep brown with flecks of inky black and shimmering gold. 
“I’m surprised at how well this has gone so far,” he said. Julie nodded, glancing around.
“I half suspected Caleb would’ve tried something by now.” Luke agreed.
“But I still have a nagging feeling in my gut,” Julie admitted. He nodded, smiling at her. The butterflies in his stomach were steady but light, and the small pressure of her hand on his shoulder kept him grounded. He had a feeling he would’ve floated away otherwise. 
“There’s nothing to do about it now, though,” Luke reasoned, and Julie smiled, grinning wider when he twirled her. Luke noticed Covington staring at him, a frown on his face and one eyebrow quirked. Luke’s face fell.
“We should probably trade off now.” He hated the coldness in his hand and on his shoulder as she let go, hated Julie’s disappointed frown, and most of all, he hated Caleb’s slimy smile as he took Julie’s wrist, and how pleased with himself he looked when she danced with him out of politeness. Luke could see how uncomfortable she was. Her whole body tensed, and her smile was extremely forced. He wanted nothing more than to get him away from her, to get him to stop touching her when she clearly wasn’t okay with it. But that would’ve caused a huge spectacle, and Julie wouldn’t want him to cause drama. So he walked away. 
When the screaming began, Luke’s stomach dropped. 
Then when he turned and saw all seven council members with daggers pressed to their throats, he nearly vomited. 
And when Caleb pulled out a small remote, threatening to detonate a bomb, anger contorted all of his features, his fists shaking, fingers tracing the outlines of two daggers inside his vest. His eyes flicked to Reggie, then Alex, then Julie, all of whom were terrified, confused, and angry.
“You’re bluffing,” someone called from the audience after Caleb made his threat about the bomb. “You’re in this room too.” Luke nodded. 
“Am I?” Caleb challenged, and it took Luke a moment to realize that he was a hologram. A terrifyingly real one, too. 
“Yes,” Caleb remarked. “You probably didn’t notice my brief trip to the restroom earlier, but that wasn’t actually a restroom trip. I’m far away by now.”
“But what about your representatives?” Reggie asked. 
“Acceptable losses. These aren’t actually representatives, they’re criminals who have been offered the chance of a full pardon if things don't go south. They have, however, been made very clear of the other possibility.” 
“You might notice that your king is not in the room,” Caleb added, and Luke gasped, running to Julie, whispering that it would be okay. She barely noticed him. 
“What did you do to my dad?” she shouted, her hands clenched in fists, shaking, a couple tears running down her face. 
“He’s alive, if that’s what you’re worried about,” Caleb said. “But I guarantee that, should I press this button, he’ll be in the line of fire.”
Furious shouts echoed in the huge room, large in part from Luke himself. Jule shrugged his hand off her shoulder, stepping up to the royals’ table. 
“Leave my people alone. Get out of our kingdom,” she instructed. “You have no place here.”
“Yeah,” Reggie interjected. “We’re not going to abandon our people, no matter how much you want us to.” 
“You can’t make us surrender,” Luke added loudly, squaring his shoulders. 
“I truly hate to do this,” Caleb said, without an ounce of sorrow in his voice. “But you leave me no choice.” 
Luke sprinted towards the doors next to Julie.
“I’m sorry, everyone,” Caleb added maliciously. Everyone was running and screaming, bustling through the doors, 
“Everyone get out of here, now!” Luke’s voice was louder than he’d ever known it could be, or maybe it was the adrenaline pumping through his veins. He ran out the door, ushering people away, directing them to the nearest exit and telling them to run as far as they could. But his mind was still on Julie.
He searched the crowd, craning his neck before he found her talking to Carlos and hugging her. He raced towards her.
“Julie,” he said quietly. 
“What are you doing?” she asked. “You should be running, you should get out of here, get Alex, get Reggie, get anyone you can and get out!” Luke shook his head.
“No,” Luke said firmly, “I’m staying with you. But please, just-” 
“No! You need to get out of here! I couldn’t live with myself if something happened to you.” Luke grabbed her wrist and pulled her into a supply closet as more people ran by, hating the way he was shaking.
“Please,” he said, blinking as his eyes adjusted, and blinking back tears. “Please, Julie. In case I don't make it, there’s something you need to know.” He took a breath, but Julie cut him off.
“No, don’t even go there.” She shook her head, but Luke couldn’t think.
“Please,” he whispered. He looked at her, trying to take in every beautiful detail; the deep brown of her eyes, the curls of hair draped over her shoulders, the small gap in her teeth, the curve of her collarbone, the beautiful melody of her voice.
“I’m sorry,” he said, a single tear sliding down his cheek. Julie leaned forward as he did, and then his lips were on hers. The kiss was brief and tasted like chocolate, full of all the emotions he couldn’t find the words for. She kissed him back, and he couldn’t explain how much it hurt knowing that it might be the last time.
“I had to do that,” he whispered when they pulled away, another tear rolling down his face. “At least once.” 
Then, he ran out of the closet, right into the mostly-empty ballroom to get everybody out and search for Ray. Caleb’s hologram smiled maliciously at him. Luke ignored it, running and helping people up as they fell, before Julie’s voice pierced the air. 
“DAD!” she screamed. No! Why was she here? She was supposed to run!
“JULIE!” he shouted, running to her.
“We have to get out of here,” he said, and thankfully she didn’t protest. She took his hand and he ran with her as fast as he could without pulling her over, making it to the front gates when the shockwave hit him. Heat from the raging fire burned the air and made it impossible to breathe, and Luke did his best to land steadily as Julie caught him after rolling. He ran as fast as he could, and everything seemed to move in slow motion as he looked back at Julie, her hand slipping from his, the final shockwave blasting him backwards.
He was blacked out before he hit the ground. 
When Luke awoke, he coughed, pain in his chest from the smoke and debris. His head was pounding, a drop of blood rolling down his cheek. As he sat up, a sharp pain in his shoulder told him he’d dislocated it. He grimaced, testing it; thankfully it wasn’t severe, and he bit down on torn fabric of his vest as he popped it back into place, using the rest as a sling he hastily tied. 
He stood, running down the pile of debris as he found Reggie. 
“REGGIE!” he shouted, running as fast as he could. Reggie’s face was streaked with tears, and he ran to him. Luke wrapped him in a one-armed hug, a sob escaping his lips. 
“Are you okay?” he asked. Reggie nodded. 
“I’m okay,” he choked out. “Sprained my wrist, but I’m okay.” 
“Where’s Julie?” he asked, looking around. 
“She’s okay, don’t worry,” Reggie told him, another tear streaking down the dust on his face. “But we haven’t found Alex yet.” Luke’s stomach dropped.
He was supposed to be Alex’s guard. He was supposed to protect him, and now he might not even be alive. Luke’s eyes blurred with tears and his chest heaved with sobs. 
“That doesn’t mean he’s…” Reggie trailed off. “We haven’t searched all of the grounds yet, so there’s still a good chance he’s alright and we just haven’t found him.” The words helped, but Luke couldn’t stop crying. Alex was missing. 
“Ray’s also alive,” Reggie added, and Luke was shocked enough to dry his tears. 
“But I thought-”
“He made it, somehow.” Reggie’s laugh was incredulous. “Everyone else is okay, too.” 
But not Alex. 
Luke practically flew down the hill to Julie, who was still passed out, her gown tattered and skin covered in soot and dust. A few streaks of blood marred her arms, but she seemed okay other than that, and Luke was too relieved to explain when he noticed that her breathing was steady. 
Ray wrapped him in a hug, which took Luke by surprise, but he hugged back. 
“I’m so sorry, mijo,” he said. “I should’ve-”
“No,” Luke said. “No, you did everything you could’ve. And we just need to find Alex.” He willed the words to be true, but Ray shook his head. 
“There were four casualties,” he whispered. “Four of my people, gone, because I couldn’t…”
“That was not your fault,” Luke told him sharply. “You hear me? Not. Your. Fault. It was Covington who did that, not you. You did everything you could.” Ray nodded.
“Okay.” He shook more, but stood, patting Luke on the shoulders, looking back down to Julie. Flynn was knelt next to her, holding her hand and whispering for her to please wake up. 
“She’s okay,” Luke whispered to himself. Then, he noticed Reggie was gone, and-
When he looked up the hill, he saw Reggie with a familiar tall, blonde boy in a torn blue suit.
“ALEX!” Luke ignored the pain in his shoulder as he bolted, running and tackling his best friend in a hug. He choked back sobs, but some tears still made their way through. “We thought you were-”
“I’m okay,” Alex said. “I’m okay.” Luke nodded into his shoulder. 
“I’m so sorry, man, I should’ve been with you, I should’ve-”
 “No,” Alex said. “We’re okay. You have nothing to apologize for.” Luke nodded. 
“Everyone else is okay, too,” he said. “Come on.” 
Luke ran back down the hill, followed by Alex and Reggie. But Luke sprinted as fast as he could when he noticed that Julie was stirring. He blinked back tears, a huge grin on his face.
“Where’s Luke?” he heard her ask. 
“Right here.” He leaned down and gently wrapped her in a hug, helping her up. She was shaky but didn’t fall, finally tackling him in a huge hug, crying into his shoulder. Luke cried into the top of her head, pressing a kiss to her hair, not caring who was watching. He let her to the others. 
“Where’s Alex?” she asked, her voice trembling. 
“He’s okay,” Reggie said from a few feet away as he helped Alex, who seemed to have sprained his ankle.
“We’re all okay,” Luke told her, wrapping them all in a giant hug.
We’re okay. 
Reggie POV
Reggie’s hands shook as he fastened the buttons on his silky red vest, adjusting and readjusting the dark sleeves of his shirt. He took a deep breath, stretching and grabbing his bass to calm him down. He ran through the notes for Icarus, sliding down the A string and adding in some extra notes for funsies. He grinned to himself as he spun, tapping his foot with the music. 
Humming to himself, Reggie glanced out the window. The sun hadn’t set, but it was going to soon. It was retreating west, preparing to dive behind the mountains. And the time on his phone told him that he needed to be in the ballroom in ten minutes. He sighed and decided to go now. It was on the other side of the palace, and he might as well go early. 
When Reggie had settled into his seat next to Ray, Councilwoman Noah soon sat next to him. 
“Hi, Reggie,” she said with a smile. “How are you?”
“Pretty nervous,” he admitted, “but excited. I love balls. They’re so fun, even if we have to dress all fancy.” Councilwoman Noah laughed.
“Well, you look wonderful,” she told him. Reggie beamed. 
“Thanks! You do too!” 
“Thanks, hon.” She shook her head wistfully. “You’re so young. You shouldn’t have to deal with such a stressful situation,” Noah said. “None of you should.” Reggie knew she was thinking about Flynn.
“Flynn’s strong,” he reminded her. “And she’s Julie’s best friend. Plus, she knows that she doesn’t have to deal with all of the stress. She does it because she can handle it, and because she wants to.” Noah nodded. 
“Plus, she probably likes being able to say she’s best friends with the princess,” he added as an afterthought. Councilwoman Noah laughed, and Reggie felt very accomplished. 
“Thanks. I always have to remind myself that she’s grown up,” she admitted. “It feels like only yesterday her hair was just long enough to braid.”
“I know,” Reggie said. “Even though Julie’s only a year younger than me, every time I see her in the meeting room, I worry that she’s going to get too stressed. I don’t know how she handles it.”
“She’ll make a great queen one day,” Noah said softly. Reggie nodded. 
“Yeah. She will.” 
The food was delicious. Reggie couldn’t help but smile as he finished, leaving room for dessert. He might’ve been a prince, but he had his priorities in order. And dessert was very high up there. 
As people began mingling before dessert, Reggie wandered around as well, chatting with random Nobles. Lady Cadence asked how his music was going. Sir Blake quipped about the ironic circumstances of such a wonderful event. Mx. Genevieve brought up some interesting points about constitutional technicalities that Reggie would be sure to bring up when they met with Covington; something about allyship and unnecessary tension. Xe’d suggested that Reggie write it down; xe was one of Ray’s close friends, so xe knew about Reggie’s ADHD. It was probably a good idea, too, so Reggie took xer advice and jotted it down in his notes app. 
Then, dessert was served, and Reggie was in heaven with the mini cupcakes. They were red velvet with cream cheese frosting, and he probably ate more than he should’ve, but if he did, that was nobody’s business but his. 
That’s code for, yes, he did eat too many cupcakes. 
Soon, the dancing began. Reggie loved dancing. Didn’t matter what kind, either; he would waltz in the ballroom, jump around whilst playing the bass, twirl around the studio as Julie played the piano, or dance by himself in the middle of the night with his earbuds in. 
Reggie made his way to the open floor, cordially waltzing with random Nobles who wanted to know more about the current political situation, dancing with Alex to hype him up and reassure him everything would be okay, twirling Julie to give her a break from stuffy Nobles who kept pestering her, and letting Carlos stand on his toes as they danced, chatting animatedly about Minecraft and Star Wars. 
Carlos eventually left to go dance with Nick’s younger sister, Annie Danforth-Evans. They were the same age, and Reggie definitely didn’t miss Annie’s blush when Carlos twirled her. He grinned to himself and kept dancing around the ballroom. 
When the shouting started, Reggie’s mind flashed back to the day he ran away.
It was a cold, rainy day in October. Reggie’s parents had been fighting more and more for months, and it had gotten so bad that he couldn’t fall asleep at night without wondering when he would be woken up at some early hour by shouts and screams. A stray piece of stuffing floated in the corner of his eye. It was from a small stuffed penguin he’d had, one that he hadn’t seen in weeks after one of his parents’ fights. 
It was early evening, though the dark, cloudy sky and pouring rain could’ve fooled someone into thinking it was night. His parents were screaming at each other again, and Reggie was wrapped in a blanket and huddled in the corner of his bedroom, surrounded by pillows from his unmade bed, trying to focus on the sound of the rain instead of the cruel words from the living room. 
He blinked back tears and sucked on the inside of his lip. There was a swollen patch of skin next to his teeth. He never bit it, just sucked on it to give him something to do instead of trying to speak. His ear was pressed to the window, sending a numbing chill through his head and making his ear hurt, but it made it easier to let the sounds of the torrential storm drown out his parents’ argument. 
When the sound of a shattering glass caught Reggie’s attention, he jumped and whimpered, his tiny hands clutching into fists. He couldn’t take this. 
Gathering up a drawstring bag, he stuffed in the tattered blanket, a small first-aid kit, his favorite book, and an extra hoodie. It was a little small, but it was warm. He put on his bigger hoodie, a thick grey one with a big pocket over the stomach, put up the hood, and shoved earplugs into his ears. He struggled to tie his beat-up converse and peeked out the door, running out the front door when they started shouting especially loud. He doubted they heard the quick, quiet opening and closing from the entryway, but if they did, they didn’t bother investigating. 
Reggie ran. He wasn’t quite sure where he was going, but he knew the city well enough to find a familiar bench that was shaded by the roof of a cafe. He sat, grateful for the dry area, ignoring the cold wind on his nose. Huddled with his knees to his chest, earplugs making him deaf to the world, he didn’t notice the old woman handing him a small bag with a cinnamon roll inside of it until she tapped his shoulder. He jumped, flinching but quickly recovering. He mumbled a quick ‘thank you’ to her, digging into the sweet pastry. Looking back on it, it probably wasn’t a good idea to accept food from a stranger, but the pangs of hunger in his stomach said otherwise. 
He’d dozed off, using the drawstring bag as a pillow as he laid across the bench, when a gentle hand on his shoulder startled him awake. 
‘Are you okay?’ the man asked. ‘Where are your parents?’ Reggie looked down. 
‘I ran away,” he whispered. 
‘They kept yelling,’ he sniffed, ‘and I hated it. They never stop.’ Worry and confusion and a little bit of anger showed on the man’s face, and Reggie retracted a couple inches, before the man knelt down. 
‘Is it okay if I give you a hug?’ he asked. Reggie nodded, hesitating for a moment. But when the man’s arms wrapped around his shoulders, his own skinny arms bolted up and wrapped around his neck, and before he knew it, he was crying into his shoulder, letting the man gently pat his back. 
‘Do you know who I am, mijo?’ he asked. Reggie shook his head. He looked familiar, but his head was too muddled to place him. 
‘I’m King Ray,’ he said. Reggie scrambled into a bow, but Ray’s hands immediately steadied him. ‘Everything’s okay,’ he assured him. ‘If you don’t want to go back to your parents, I could bring you to the palace,’ he offered. Reggie’s eyes lit up. 
‘Yeah! You could meet Queen Rose and my daughter, Julie. She’s about your age. You’d love her.’ He stood, offering his hand. Reggie hesitated but took it, a slow smile on his face.
Ever since that day, he hadn’t heard his parents shouts, because he hadn’t actually seen them. But Ray was the best father he could’ve ever asked for. 
These furious shouts from the ballroom brought back that one memory, and even though it happened in a split second, he felt every effect in its whole, and it struck him like a well-aimed blow. But he was distracted by the sight before him.
All seven council members with daggers to their throats. 
Reggie wasn’t sure what he was feeling at that moment. It was a mix of confusion, anger, fear, and resolve, though that might’ve just been the adrenaline. 
“Like I said,” Covington shouted over the rising screams of everyone in the room, “you will either surrender peacefully to Kryptonian rule, or we will take it by force.”
More shouts echoed throughout the huge ballroom, arguments and cries of fear, anger, and betrayal. Some bakers and chefs snuck in from the kitchens and saved the council members, which was a huge relief. But when Covington pulled the small remote out of his pocket, and revealed that he was a hologram, everything silenced in Reggie’s ears.
Reggie had heard of seeing red, but this wasn’t the passionate scarlet of anger. This was pure, black, hate. Covington was threatening his people, including the people he cared most about in the entire world. Julie and Carlos, Luke and Alex, Erik, Mira, Carrie and Flynn, and the entire council.  His hands clenched into fists.
“But what about your representatives?” Reggie finally asked. Surely Covington wouldn’t be willing to kill his own people of such high ranking. 
“Acceptable losses. These aren’t actually representatives, they’re criminals who have been offered the chance of a full pardon if things don't go south. They have, however, been made very clear of the other possibility.” Reggie’s stomach dropped. Nobody deserved a death penalty, and given his impressions of Covington, he doubted their crimes were even that severe. 
“You might notice that your king is not in the room,” Caleb added, Reggie’s heart plummeted. Tears welled in his eyes.
“What did you do to my dad?” Julie yelled, being held back by Luke.
“He’s alive, if that’s what you’re worried about,” Caleb said. “But I guarantee that, should I press this button, he’ll be in the line of fire.”
Furious shouts echoed in the huge room, and Reggie was one of the loudest among them despite his aversion to raising his voice. Covington didn’t get to waltz into Dahlia, declare war, and threaten all of these people and just get away with it. He didn’t get to threaten Reggie’s own family without facing consequences.
“Leave my people alone. Get out of our kingdom,” Julie instructed angrily, her voice clear and sharp as a dagger. “You have no place here.”
“Yeah,” Reggie interjected. “We’re not going to abandon our people, no matter how much you want us to.” It wasn’t a lie, either; Reggie was a sincere person, but he’d never meant anything as much as he meant those words. He would not give up on his people. Not ever.
And he wouldn’t give up on his family, either. 
“I truly hate to do this,” Covington said, and Reggie was pretty sure his stomach was at the bottom of the Mariana Trench. But he sprinted to the doors, hauling them open and helping people out as they ran. 
“Everyone out!” he called desperately, tears rimming his vision. “Get as far away as you can.”
“Your highness, where should we go?” Lady Sierra asked, her voice terrified. 
“Run out the front gates,” he instructed, “then through the city. It’s late, but it isn’t raining. Just be careful.” He patted her shoulder and rushed past her, picking up a small child, barely older than six, who was struggling to hold on to his mother’s hand in the chaos. 
“I’ve got him,” he called to her, calming her frantic shouts for her son. Reggie cradled him as gently as he could, bearing a few bruises as he guarded the child from the stampede of terrified Nobles. He ran as quickly as he could and handed him over to his mother, sprinting along the side of the hallway and opening more doors, yelling into the kitchens to any chefs still in there to get out. He did the same as he passed the guards’ quarters, gesturing wildly and helping people out as they jumped from their beds. 
Reggie found Carlos as he ran to the front gate, wrapping him in a huge hug and picking him up over his shoulders, his legs carrying him as fast as he could possibly run. Bounding out the front gate, Carlos over his shoulder, he made it down the hill and put him down. 
“Lead the others as far away as you can, okay?” Carlos nodded, wrapping him in a quick hug.
“I love you,” he said. Reggie nodded.
“Love you too. Now go!” When Carlos took off, Reggie bounded backwards towards the hill. 
“Run through the city,” he instructed as loudly as he could. “Just go straight but keep the palace in view, then wait for further instructions.” People nodded as they ran, and Reggie directed them in the way Carlos had gone. 
“It’ll be okay,” he assured a sobbing woman as she jogged past him. But the tremble in his voice probably wasn’t very convincing. 
Neither was the shockwave that knocked them backwards.
Reggie’s ears were both ringing and silent. He couldn’t tell when or even if he hit the ground, though he had to have, if the sudden blast of cold on his back was any indication, same with the sharp pain on his wrist. It took a moment, but he was finally able to open his eyes, quickly shutting them as a tiny piece of concrete flew over him and sliced open his forehead. He groaned, reaching up to test the wound. It didn’t feel that deep, thankfully, but his dusty fingers still came away streaked with blood. And when he looked back up the hill…
He’d been lucky enough to avoid the fire. His clothes were torn but not singed like so many others. Reggie stood shakily, jumping over bits of debris as he raced back up the hill. 
“JULIE?” he shouted, looking around. “ALEX? LUKE? ERIK?” His shouting didn’t seem to be of any use until he heard a familiar voice to his right. 
“REGGIE?” it called. His head whipped around, worsening his headache, but he didn’t care, because Erik’s tarnished but handsome face was visible across the hill. 
“ERIK!” Reggie sprinted to him, tackling him in a hug, trying to choke back his tears. “I’m so sorry, I-” 
“No,” Erik whispered, pressing a soft kiss to his temple. “Everything’s okay, I promise.” Reggie nodded into his shoulder. 
“Guys?” someone called. When Reggie’s eyes snapped open to a familiar redheaded girl in a tattered aquamarine dress, a grin broke out on his face. 
“Mira!” They both ran to her, picking her up in a hug and spinning. Reggie pressed a kiss to her hair. 
“I’m so glad you’re okay,” Erik told her, and Reggie nodded his agreement. 
“Me too,” she whispered, smudging the soot on her face as she wiped away tears. “We should look for others.” Reggie nodded, blinking back more tears as he let go, scanning around him. Dozens of battered but breathing Nobles were littered around the field, sitting, standing, and walking, helping each other. 
“Are you okay?” Reggie asked Mx. Genevieve, helping xem up. 
“I think so,” xe coughed. “My head hurts, but I guess that’s to be expected after a bomb.”
“Probably.” Reggie made sure they were steady. “Make sure you’re alright, then try to help anyone else you find, okay? I’m doing the same.” Xe nodded, patting his shoulder. 
As he searched more rubble, he found Flynn and Carrie, clinging to each other and shaking behind a huge piece of debris. They were rattled but uninjured, thankfully. And soon, he found Julie, passed out near the stairs, the violet tulle and silk of her dress torn and dirty. He scooped her up as gently as he could, brushing a curl off her face. She coughed, and Reggie half-hoped she would wake up, but she stayed asleep.
“REGGIE!” His head whipped towards the familiar sound of Carlos’s voice, as well as the voices of the other Nobles who’d escaped in time, rushing back to the palace. He gently set down Julie, leaving her with Mira, and took off towards Carlos, who jumped into his arms. 
“Are you okay?” he asked worriedly. Reggie nodded. 
“I’m okay,” he confirmed. “And hey, if Han Solo can survive it, so can we.” Carlos laughed, but there were still tears streaming down his face. And they just quickened, until they heard an impossibly amazing voice behind them.
“Mijos?” Ray asked, coughing up dust.
“DAD!” they shouted, running to him, hugging him gently but tightly. Reggie sobbed into his chest. 
“We thought you were-”
“I’m okay,” he assured them. “Just a bit rattled. Where’s Julie?”
“She’s over there,” he pointed. “By the stairs.”
“I’ve been around the back of the damage site,” Ray explained, “which is why I hadn’t seen you yet. Almost everyone is okay, which is a relief, but…” he waited until Carlos had walked out of earshot before adding, “there were four confirmed casualties.” Reggie’s heart shattered.
“No,” he whispered. “No, that can’t be right, everyone-”
“It’s nobody we knew,” Ray added, but his eyes glistened with melancholy. Reggie nodded, hugging him again. 
“Can you take me to see Julie?” he asked. Reggie nodded, taking his hand and leading him to the small, clear patch he’d set her down in. Mira and Flynn were both by her side. 
“Has she woken up?” Ray asked. Reggie noticed the looks of shock on the girls’ faces, but they didn’t say anything, just shaking their heads. 
Finding Alex and Luke had been a huge relief, and when Julie woke up, something in Reggie’s heart clicked into place. 
There were shattered pieces of hearts throughout their family, found or blood, but those pieces combined into a beautiful mosaic of people who were scarred but lovely, bruised but kind, and loved each other with a passion and gentle nature that would bring them closer. 
Willie POV
“Okay,” Lilian called through the large room full of bakers and chefs, “get to your usual posts and finish up any extra dishes for tonight. Then, Alyssa, Conley, Ever, Jenna, Mark, Tori, Aaliyah, and CoCo, you’re in charge of distribution and waiting during the ball. Everyone else, be on standby, but if things go smoothly, you should be able to have an early night.” Willie smiled, but his heart fell.
He’d really hoped he’d be chosen to go to the ball and wait tables. He knew it was stupid, but he really wanted to see Alex. Even if they wouldn’t get to interact, it still would’ve been nice. And he’d spent the whole time he was baking thinking through tons of what-ifs. What if Alex noticed him there? What if they got to chat? If he was lucky, what if they got to dance? What if…
Willie shut down the thoughts. It wasn’t happening anyway. 
He redid his hair in the knot at the nape of his neck, sighing and heading back to the kitchens to make sure the cupcakes were perfect. They were, of course; he’d practiced piping cupcakes since he was little. Eva always loved cupcakes. Her favorite of his were the lemon ones, with the yellow and pink sprinkles. He’d made them on her eighth birthday, and her face lit up when he brought them out, complete with striped candles. Willie grinned at the memory of her trying to blow them out with her missing two front teeth, singing, ‘happy birthday to me, I’m a hundred and three, I’m getting tho old and thoon I’ll be wrinkly!’ It wasn’t the same song that a lot of kids sang, but it was Eva’s. She refused to sing it any other way. Of course, Willie still teased her about her then-inability to pronounce her S’s, and any time it was her birthday, he’d say ‘it’th your birthday, Eva! You’re getting tho old, thoon you’ll be wrinkly!’ It drove her absolutely insane. 
Willie missed those days. 
The ball seemed to be going smoothly, so Willie took it upon himself to make a batch of key lime tarts. He hummed to himself, letting his mind wander to all sorts of things (Alex, mostly), shaping the dough into the tins.
That was, until he heard the screaming. 
His stomach dropped and he dashed to the other side of the kitchen, where Alyssa was standing in a defensive position as if someone was about to attack her. Willie joined her, before Lilian snuck back in through the back door. She didn’t say a word, but pointed Alyssa to the frying pan shelf and Willie…
To the knife rack. 
Willie’s hands shook and a cold sweat dripped down his back, but he obeyed Lilian’s grim nod and took one, gripping it in his palm and watching light glint on the blade. He swallowed down the bile rising in his throat. 
Lilian led everyone in the kitchens to the door, surreptitiously walking out in a single-file line, all the way down the hall to the ballroom. Willie never knew Lilian could be so silent; her steps were completely inaudible. 
As Lilian pushed open the door, eyes flicked their way, and Willie silenced his breathing as he searched for a familiar blue-green-grey pair. And when he finally found them, they were fraught with terror, hope, confusion, and something else that Willie couldn’t quite place. Something lighter but heavier at the same time. 
Alex gave him the tiniest of head-shakes, but he was too far in to stop. 
I’m sorry, Willie mouthed. I care about you, Alex. 
He wasn’t sure if he’d been able to understand what he so desperately wanted to tell him, but Willie did see a resigned nod and a plea for him to be careful coming from Alex’s direction. 
Things seemed to move in slow motion. By some miracle, Covington, who was draped over King Ray’s throne, didn’t notice the nervous glances their way. He shouldn’t have been surprised, though; he was a very self-absorbed person. 
Then, all hell broke loose when Alyssa and six other cooks brought down their pans on the representatives’ heads at once, knocking them out cold and freeing the council members. Willie’s heart raced as he hid behind the throne as Lilian trained her knife on Covington’s back. He was astonished at how steady her voice was, how tall she stood (not just because she was over six feet; she was scarily confident). 
“Or,” she said smoothly, “you could surrender, and go back to your own country.” The knife in her hand didn’t waver, but Covington recoiled. He hadn’t heard her coming. Willie took his chance and got on the other side, his knife pointed at Covington as well. He wasn’t sure if he’d be able to use it.
“Don’t hurt these people,” he instructed, proud of how clear and steady his own voice was. 
“A few bakers trying to save their precious leaders,” Caleb purred, but the malice in his voice was like venom. “How sweet. Unfortunately for you, I have this”- he pulled a small remote out of his pocket -”and while I would rather not use it, I will if I must.” Willie’s heart leaped to his throat, and he was achingly aware of the sweat on his back, the curl of hair that had loosened from his bun, the pebble in his shoe.
None of that compared to what he would soon feel if Covington pressed that button, though. Willie had never seen one before, but he knew exactly what it was.
A bomb.
The next minute was chaos. His knife clattered to the floor, heart pounding in his ears, and he jumped backwards, hating his fearful reaction. Lilian, to her credit, held her ground nicely, but the tension in her shoulders had returned in full effect, and her eyebrows creased in the middle. 
“That’s right,” Caleb said over the terrified screams, people running for the doors. “If any of you here have any sense, you’ll run. You shouldn’t have to, of course, but if your leaders continue to be stubborn, it might be for the best.” Willie shook his head. Covington wouldn’t just… do that. 
“You’re bluffing,” someone called from the audience. “You’re in this room too.”
“Am I?” Caleb challenged, and Willie could’ve sworn he’d seen wrong, but he didn’t. A flicker of transparency, proving that Covington was actually somewhere else. 
A hologram. 
“Yes,” Caleb remarked. “You probably didn’t notice my brief trip to the restroom earlier, but that wasn’t actually a restroom trip. I’m far away by now.”
“But what about your representatives?” a man asked. Willie recognized him as Princess Julie’s older brother, though he couldn’t remember his name.
“Acceptable losses. These aren’t actually representatives, they’re criminals who have been offered the chance of a full pardon if things don't go south. They have, however, been made very clear of the other possibility.” Willie’s hands curled into fists. Was he really willing to just… sacrifice those people? Criminals or not, Willie couldn’t stomach the idea of sacrificing seven people. 
“You might notice that your king is not in the room,” Caleb added, and Willie’s stomach dropped. 
“What did you do to my dad?” Julie shouted, her hands clenched in fists, shaking. Willie scanned the crowd, but didn’t find the king. 
“He’s alive, if that’s what you’re worried about,” Caleb said. “But I guarantee that, should I press this button, he’ll be in the line of fire.”
Furious shouts echoed in the huge room, and Willie watched as Princess Julie walked towards the royals’ table, getting in Covington’s face. Willie ducked his head in a bow.  
“Leave my people alone.” Her voice was cold, harsh, but clear and steady. “Get out of our kingdom. You have no place here.”
“Yeah,” her brother interjected. “We’re not going to abandon our people, no matter how much you want us to.” Willie nodded
“You can’t make us surrender,” another man informed Covington. Alex nodded, standing as tall as he could, and Willie tried to do the same, swallowing the bile rising in his throat.
“I truly hate to do this,” Caleb said, without an ounce of sorrow in his voice. “But you leave me no choice.” 
“NO,” Alex yelled, and Willie’s stomach dropped. His eyes darted to Alex, wide with fear. If Alex…
Willie shoved away the thought.
“I’m sorry, everyone,” Caleb added maliciously. Everyone was running and screaming, bustling through the doors, and Willie did his best to get people out. 
“LILIAN!” he screamed, rushing to her. “Grab Alyssa and the others, then get out as fast as you can!” She shook her head. 
“No, you need to leave too,” she told him. Willie shook his head.
“I’m going to try to get people out of here,” he decided. “I can run fast, don’t worry.”
“What are the odds of getting you to listen to me?”
“Slim to none.” Lilian sighed.
“Be fast.” He nodded, patting her shoulder and letting her dash away. 
Willie sprinted to the hallway outside the ballroom, shouting for people to get out of there, searching for Alex. Hopefully, he’d run, and would be far away by the time Covington made good on his promise. 
But, of course, a familiar voice echoed through his ears.
“WILLIE!” Alex sprinted to him, and Willie’s eyes widened. 
“GO! GET OUT OF HERE!” he said, trying to urge Alex out. “You need to get out before this place blows!” Tears streamed down his face but he ignored them, running to Alex. 
When the shockwave hit him, he was a few meters away from the man he was trying to reach. Willie was pretty sure he’d phased into a different dimension when it passed through his head, leaving it fuzzy and burning but also clear, cold, and sharp. 
He felt like he was floating. Maybe he was; there was no way to know. He felt disconnected from his body. The matter making him up wasn’t really his, it was just his turn to use it before he would inevitably die and be reabsorbed into the world, waiting for some other creature to be reborn from the ashes of his demise. 
When his back hit the ground, Willie felt it, but in the way you feel a headache when you’re half asleep. He registered it, knew he was in pain, but didn’t feel it as much as he should’ve. He barely registered the bruises forming on his shoulders, the heat from the fire on his skin, the flecks of concrete bouncing across his face. He was feeling everything and nothing at all, like a frozen fire, a breeze barely detectable as it rushed against a hurricane. 
Willie caught the faint glinting of a few stars in the sky before blacking out. 
When he awoke, it was to shouts. They weren’t urgent, but searching, calling, asking, hoping. Blearily, he blinked his eyes open. It was still night, so he couldn’t have been out for long. What had even happened? Why was he collapsed in the middle of a field full of bits of concrete, wood, fabric, and debris?
Then, everything came rushing back in an instant.
The shockwave.
Willie bolted upright, ignoring the pounding headache between his temples. Standing shakily, he ran to the first person he could find, which happened to be Alyssa.
“Willie? Is that you?” she called, her purple hair caked with dirt. He nodded, tears blurring his vision as he wrapped her in a hug.
“Are you okay?” he asked. When she nodded against his shoulder, he sighed in relief. 
“Thank God. Have you seen anyone else? Where’s Lilian?”
“She’s helping pass out medical supplies to anyone who was injured,” Alyssa explained. “I’m scanning the grounds for others.” He nodded. 
“Has anyone…” he trailed off, not wanting to finish the sentence. Alyssa looked away, nodding.
“Four people. But everyone else was lucky, as far as we know?”
“Has anybody found King Ray yet?”
“No, but we’re looking. It’ll be okay, I promise.” 
“I know, I just… This is horrible.”
“It really is,” Alyssa agreed. “I’m so sorry you had to go through it.”
“You too.”
She reached up and patted his shoulder, and Willie dashed around the grounds, searching for people, taking extra time to look for a certain blonde prince.
He helped a mother and her daughter up out of a ditch where they’d fallen after avoiding a huge concrete slab, assuring them that everything would be okay. After he’d sent them on their way down the hill, he continued his search. But no matter where he looked, he never found Alex. 
Tears blurred in his eyes, but Willie blinked them back. Now wasn’t the time to cry. It wasn’t the time to grieve someone who could be alive. 
He climbed over piles of broken concrete and stone, stamping out small fires along the way, leaving nothing but crumbling, charred ash. 
But no matter where he searched, he couldn’t find Alex. 
He doubled back multiple times, scanning the grounds and looking in every nook and cranny he could find, even going as far as to search the other half of the grounds where the bomb hadn’t affected. But there was no familiar sweep of blonde hair, no sarcastic remark, no eyes that shifted from blue to green to grey, no golden embroidery on a blue suit. 
Then, he found himself running through the gardens again, searching, and ending up all the way at the back end in the park where he’d tried to teach Alex to skate. 
Willie brushed the petals of one of the roses between his fingers, the sweet aroma floating to his head and making him dizzy. The grass was cold and wet with dew, but he didn’t care, embracing the chill rather than the fire he’d been so close to. He sank to the ground, hugging his knees to his chest.
Alex was gone.
And there was nothing Willie could do. 
He was heartbroken. He didn’t know Alex as well as he wanted to. He wanted to get to know every aspect of him, every quirk and flaw and edge, no matter what, but now he was gone, a memory floating away on a wind, gentle but cruel and unrelenting. Willie ducked his head into his knees, letting his emotions flow as he sobbed.
He was always a quiet crier, and it made him feel insignificant and forgettable. For once, though, he didn’t care. Let the universe forget him. Let him flow through the galaxy as nothing more than a speck, a dot on a timeline, a splash of color in an ever-growing sea of humanity. 
He cursed himself for falling in love so quickly, for not trying harder to get Alex to leave before the blast. He cursed himself for ever having met him at all, maybe then they’d both be alive, and it would be better in the long run. But nothing could ever be perfect. Willie knew that. So why, why did it hurt so badly when the one thing he knew would never work out ended so abruptly?
He tugged on the key on his necklace, the familiar grooves indenting his skin. He was shaking, the cold darkness like a blanket, fading as the sky gradually lightened, barely noticeable even as the sun began to paint the horizon with streaks of gold. 
Then, the impossible happened. At least, it should’ve been impossible.
He heard Alex calling his name.
He knew it couldn’t be real, but he couldn’t bring himself to care as his head snapped up, half-sure he was hallucinating. But Alex was running closer, and soon Willie was standing up, walking slowly, tentatively towards him, like if he moved too fast it might scare away the slim possibility that he was real, and not a cruel trick of the light.
It might’ve worked, too, because when he leaped into Alex’s hug, he didn’t phase through him, didn’t collapse back to the ground. Alex caught him, and Willie couldn’t tell if he was laughing or crying. Probably both, he decided as he wrapped his arms tighter around Alex’s back. 
“I’m sorry,” he whispered shakily, feeling Alex’s head shake over his. 
“No,” he said. “No, I’m sorry, I don’t know what I was doing, I should’ve grabbed you and ran…” Then it was Willie’s turn to shake his head. His breath hitched as he realized just how close they were. He could’ve counted the faint freckles dotting the prince’s nose, traced constellations into his skin, searched his eyes for answers he didn’t know existed. 
And then, he kissed him. 
Willie had always thought that, when people described sparks flying during a kiss, they were exaggerating, but in that moment he realized that it was incredibly, beautifully real. Sparks flew from his heart, leaving flecks of light and euphoria on his skin. Alex’s lips were soft and warm over his, slick with tears. It was broken and imperfect, but Willie wouldn’t change a second of it.
When they came up for air, Willie was smiling, but more tears were rolling down his face. 
“When you weren’t with the survivors, I-” he choked off into another sob. “I thought I’d lost you,” he finally whispered. Alex shook his head, and Willie delved deeper into the embrace, memorizing every detail that he could, the way Alex’s hands felt on his back, the fabric of his suit, how his shoulder was perfectly level with Willie’s mouth.
“You’ll never lose me,” Alex whispered to him.
A few moments later, Willie breathed back, “I hope not.” 
60 notes · View notes
vagrantblvrd · 3 months ago
how do din and luke meet in that modern au?
Oooh, so.
I don’t know why but I really like the idea of Din being the handyman at his apartment complex - gets a cut on his rent and pretty flexible schedule to take care of his tiny gremlin kid - but also?
Lends a hand at Cara’s gym or Boba’s bike shop or something and Luke comes in because his bike is acting up and he can’t figure it out?
Like, Luke’s usually pretty good about keeping his bike up to speed and stuff but there’s something wrong with it he can’t figure it out?
Din’s filling in for one of Boba’s guys, only one in when Luke pulls in and it’s like oh, no, he’s ridiculously attractive, and somehow he manages not to make a fool of himself.
He thinks Luke might be flirting with him??? There’s a lot of smiling and even some leaning, Luke in that yellow jacket of his and big old smile and pretty blue eyes leaning on the counter telling Din all about his bike woes and such with this smile like hey, what can you do, right?
Meanwhile Din’s gripping the ballpoint pen so tight the the plastic cracks - one of those clear plastic ones, name of Boba’s shop worn away from use and whatnot, and he is trying, okay, he is trying to be a professional but Luke is making it really, really hard. NO. Difficult. Luke is making it really, really difficult.
He has no idea what he writes down on the paperwork. Boba calls him up the next day trying to make sense of it and Din is like shit because for the life of him he cannot recall anything about the whole encounter aside from Luke. (Well, okay, he does once his brain kicks into gear, but when he’s talking to Boba on the phone it’s static.)
Luke with his big smile and pretty blue eyes and all that leaning and Din goes out to check on Luke’s bike and it’s something that needs a new part, and Luke’s bike is an older model - “It was my dad’s,” he says, this odd smile on his face, something that tells Din it’s better not to ask after that tidbit just yet - and he’ll have to order it. Should be at the shop in a day or two, and they’ll have Luke back on the roan in no time.
Because Reasons it’s not safe to drive the bike, and Boba’s shop doesn’t really do courtesy shuttle service, but Luke came in close enough to closing that Din’s sure there won’t be any more customers and Din does have his minivan, so...
And, okay, it might seem a little creepy, but also common decency since Luke mentioned being new in town and he probably doesn’t know that many people, and anyway. It would be weird to kick him out of the shop and just drive off, right????
Besides, it’s been cloudy all week and the forecasts look like they might be right for once because it feels like it’s going to be a hell of a storm, and he’d feel bad if he made Luke wait for his ride in the rain.
So Din offers to give Luke a ride home or wherever after he closes the shop, Luke tries to tell him it’s no problem, he can call a cab or a rideshare - he has a friend in town, old family friend or something but it’s kind of late and anyway, no need to go to all that trouble?
But Din insists, and it’s not like Luke’s putting up much of a fight about it, and he just hangs around while Din closes up the shop and locks up and then gets in Din’s minivan and it’s not as weird as either of them thought it would be?
They don’t really talk on the way aside from Luke offering up an address and such and Din grumbling about traffic and detours and construction. Mentions offhand to Luke about what to look out for when traffic picks up and so on.
At this point I don’t know if I like Luke staying at Obi-Wan’s place at the moment or not, but you know what would be hilarious?
If Luke gives Din his address and Din is just like ah, yes, I know exactly where that is and they zoom off in that direction only for him to have the belated realization that wait, wait. That’s my apartment complex.
But maybe that come later, you know?
A few weeks, maybe a month or two after their first meeting and Luke’s bike is acting up again and he has to bring it back into the shop and he and Din do this whole thing over again?
Only this time Luke is like, well, hot bike shop guy didn’t react badly to my flirting the first time, why not kick things up a notch? And poor Din is like oh, no, this is terrible when it’s really the exact opposite.
And maybe before he wasn’t really in the frame of mind to be looking at getting into a relationship of any kind? Busy with Grogu and work and other stuff and no real time to consider it, but things have evened out in his life and it might be nice, and then Luke walks back into his life and he’s like hmm, why not?
So double flirting and Din is pretty sure it is flirting this time - Luke did the thing when he handed his keys over, you know the one. Fingers brushing, lingering, intense eye contact and smiles - and anyway, yes.
It’s a few hours to closing, but Boba won’t mind if Din closes the shop early and Luke puts up a token protest about Din driving him home, and this time, okay, this time.
Luke gives Din his address and Din is like okay, great! And it isn’t until they’re actually on the road - the one he takes whenever he leaves Boba’s shop on his way home that he’s like, huh, and not until he’s halfway to their destination that he’s like weird.
Because last time he could have sworn Luke lived in the opposite direction, but he did say he was staying with a friend at the time, what with being new in town and all.
It’s not until he sees his the apartment complex he lives in come into view that he’s like wait, wait, wait.
His boss told him someone was moving in to one of the apartment units a week or so ago, and while he’d made note of it at the time it hadn’t come up since then.
Din stares at the apartment complex for a moment, and then looks at Luke who is all ??? at his reaction.
“You live here?” Din asks, brain no co-operating with him, so of course that’s the first thing he say.
Luke is still ??? but he’s like “Yeah, I just moved in last week. Still settling in, but it seems nice.”
Din is like. “...” because he’s convinced this is the universe playing a joke on him. (Or maybe his asshole friends, who knows.)
“Uh, yeah,” Din says, awkward as hell.
There’s a little more awkwardness before Luke starts to get out - and stops. Stares out the windshield and Din is like ??? because Luke says in an undertone, “You can do this, you’re a Skywalker,” and rips off a corner of his copy of the slip Din gave him for his keys at the shop.
Gives Din this awkward look and a little “Excuse me,” as he snags the pen in Din’s workshirt and writes his number on that bit of paper. Gives Din this crooked little smile and tips his head before it clicks that oh, oh shit. Luke’s giving him his number.
And not, you know, because of work reasons. Because his bike and Boba’s shop and just. (God, he’s a mess.)
Din takes the paper and Luke beams at him before he slips out of Din’s little minivan with a “Call me sometime!” that’s almost swallowed by the rain because rainy season and Din sits in his dumb little minivan for a long, long time after that with Luke’s number clutched in his hand and brain full of !!! because !!!.
But also, also.
Din hearing about Luke all over the place because he works with that family friend of his - Ben, something? - with some kind of youth program and he went to Cara’s gym about holding classes there or something?
Turns out he and his family friends do something with sword? Or yoga or something, Cara wasn’t clear on it, just wanted to tell him all about these weirdos and what kind of sucker did she look like? (Din rolls his eyes because he knows her, knows she said yes, and probably cut them a sweeter deal than they were expecting and anyway, anyway, he hears about Luke from her which is unexpected to say the least.
And then there’s Boba, who gets this look on his face when he realizes Dins a little moony over this guy he met, someone he met through Boba’s shop, and then it’s -
“Wait, what?”
Because Boba used to be a bounty hunter back before he settled down and opened his bike shop and Din worked with/for him a bit before Grogu came into his life and he realized he needed something steadier for the kid.
Boba’s the one to tell him about Luke being buddies with Han, and after Din sees Luke’s tattoo and hears all about his days with his biker gang back home - “It really wasn’t a biker gang, Din, really” digs up an old bounty on Luke.
Old, old, from when the whole Family Drama was going down and anyway, it was a long time ago and everything’s been cleared up and just. Don’t worry about it, okay?
Anyway, before all that there’s Luke moving a new couch into his place one day and Din on his way back from fixing someone’s sink or whatever and offers to help?
Luke is like, “Um,” because what is Din doing there?
To which Din is like, “So, i didn’t realize it at the time,but I, too, live in this apartment complex and am also the resident handyman.”
Luke just looking at him over the top of his stupidly heavy couch because what are the odds?
Din feeling a little awkward and about to scuttle on home, but Luke snorts and take Din up on his offer of help and after struggling to get it up to Luke’s place and in the door, they collapse on the couch - stupidly heavy but surprisingly comfortable.
And it’s late afternoon and Luke didn’t have time for breakfast and Din straight up skipped it getting Grogu off to to daycare. Cara’s picked him up, and she likes to keep him with her until Din calls or she leaves the gym which gives him a free afternoon, and anyway.
They order pizza and watch terrible television because they’re too damn tired to do anything else and it’s actually really nice and maybe, maybe, they kind of gravitate towards one another somewhere in there.
Dip in the couch cushions or something and leaning against one another, maybe Din’s arm goes on the back of the couch and Luke’s shoulders happen to be right there, who can say.
(Maybe, maybe, there’s this little moment when Din’s leaving because Cara texted to let him know she’s bringing Grogu back and he has to leave and Luke sees him to the door where they just kind of...look at one another.
Soft smiles and so on, and not quite at the smooching stage just yet - Din helped him move his couch, Luke fed him pizza, a date that is not - and yet?
Luke might feel a little cheeky, might dart in and press a quick little kiss  to Din’s cheek and laugh at the look on his face, might say, “I had fun, we should do it again sometime,” before Din’s phone buzzes again, Cara almost to the complex and Din has to go, and Din, okay, Din is like.
“I’d like that,” and have to run even though he really doesn’t want to, wants to spend more time with Luke, but his kid, and anyway, anyway, maybe they can go on an actual date next time.
(They kind of don’t though, but that’s fine because they have a good time anyway, and they do manage to get to the smooching stage, which is just really, really nice.)
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codyckuk004 · 3 months ago
3 Common Reasons Why Your Removals And Storage Companies Isn’t Working (And How To Fix It)
When relocating house, remember to just take the youngsters's requirements under consideration.
Its really easy to ignore children's needs in the course of a household go, as you'll be so wrapped up inside the practicalities of transferring dwelling your self. But moving home might be a challenging time for kids too. They're also forsaking acquainted locations and important pals. They, far too, will be setting up a completely new chapter inside their lifestyle: adjusting to a completely new house, a different neighbourhood, in addition to a new faculty.
Making ready for Going Property Let your children find out about transferring residence as soon as you realise the go is basically heading to occur. The more time the childrenhave to think about and put together with the go, the less complicated It'll be for them.
Give Your sons or daughters a chance to Specific their inner thoughts, and take a look at for being sincere regarding your own. Most children will really feel some anger, sadness, or worry about the go. These responses are normal and also to be expected.
Aid more mature young children make an handle e-book. Knowing they could remain in touch with their mates is a crucial Section of An effective transfer.
In this day and age - Possibly you might assistance them put in place their very own e-mail deal with or their very own site or profile over a social networking site - then they could be in contact with their buddies over the web.
During Transferring Dwelling Through the property go, check out to remain as constructive and relaxed as you may. Not often simple at this type of demanding time!
Babies Specially get on their mom's temper and are quite sensitive to tension, bringing about a very unsettled little one - the last thing you need when you're packing.
Youthful kids might have spent beyond regular time in childcare or with buddies, so Really don't be amazed Should they be far more clingy after they're all-around you.
Include your children inside the packing. More mature children can set their very own possessions in containers, and youngsters of all ages will appreciate decorating the packing containers that contains their points. Undertaking this will likely also make obtaining your children's matters less difficult when you're at The brand new property!
Attempt to stick with the kids's normal routines. Have meals and naps at the exact same situations as common.
Stay with the standard bedtime regimen. Recall never to pack their favorite blanket, teddy bear or book.
Assistance Your sons or daughters say goodbye on the vital men and women of their life. Perhaps have a bit 'heading away celebration'.
Assist the kids produce a scrapbook in the aged property by having their own personal pics of the house, their buddies, even a piece of the wallpaper!
Finding Settled after Transferring Household To start with just unpack the essentials within the household. It seriously isn't going to make a difference if all your guides are within the bookshelves for the first several days, even weeks!
Try out to generate the children's bedrooms Protected and cozy. Make sure they've got their familiar items about them. And take a look at to re-set up their regular bedtime plan as swiftly as you possibly can.
Let the kids have a say in how they want to adorn their new bedroom. This will likely aid them come to feel in command of their environment again.
Commit time Discovering your new neighbourhood. Specifically the things the children beloved ideal with regards to their old residence. Realizing they could however go for a pizza or to your park and many others should help Within this transition.
Motivate them to help make new good friends by letting them know its Okay to ask buddies round or contact them on the mobile phone.
Transferring household is a big time of improve for youngsters and Older people alike. So Really don't hope them just to sail while it.
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beckettwogt212 · 6 months ago
site de rencontres ukrainiennes
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Organizing a kid's social gathering could be annoying, but Luckily for us there are several places in Dubai to assist you to out. With no scarcity of fabulously creative kid's pursuits, you're spoilt for preference no matter whether you might be throwing a little bash or an about-the-major extravaganza for The complete university.
Listed here, we have rounded up out leading picks of children's celebration Thoughts which have been sure to impress all your minimal attendees.
Do not be delay with the term 'museum', Oli Oli is an awesome Place full of eight pleasurable-stuffed galleries such as Water, Air, Vehicles & Ramps, Toshi's Nets, Imaginative Lab, Future Park, Toddlers and Forts & Dens, in which Young children can have an enjoyable, interactive and academic encounter. For the duration of May, they're giving their "Wonderful Occasion Expertise' package for less, in which you can choose one in the galleries to toss it in, which includes organic get together food items in addition to a focused occasion facilitator. Let them get creative by including a workshop as well.
Oli Oli Setting up, Al Quoz, Dubai, 'Awesome Occasion Encounter' from Dhs126 for every kid Solar to Thurs, Dhs147 Fri to Sat, Older people and birthday kid free of charge. Tel: (04) 702 7300.
Slime Functions
Earning your very own 'slime' is now a very preferred Little ones action in the final number rencontre femme ukraine of decades and, allows confront it, most Children like to get their palms dirty. Carried out by 8-calendar year-aged 'Slime Princess', Rafa, The Slime Squad throw slime birthday get-togethers at your own home, or head to at least one in their slime-earning workshops at Mercato Mall, Time Square Centre and Wafi Shopping mall.
The Slime Squad Dubai, different locations, Dhs50 for each little one to create two varieties of slime. Tel: (050) 983 1815.
Comfortable Participate in
Pizza is a bit of a universal favourite, so this pizza-building celebration offered by Pizza Convey is a good way for small ones to have fun and understand cooking expertise because they make their own personal creations. They will get a preference of components, a glass of apple or orange juice and also a chef's hat and apron. Of course, when cooked, they will manage to tuck into their mouth watering pizzas.
Jazz@PizzaExpress, JLT, Cluster A, Jumeirah Lake Towers, JLT, Dubai, Dhs68 for each little one, 2hrs. Tel: (04) 441 6342.
Soft Enjoy
Little ones Zone is perfectly-regarded among mother and father in Dubai for its unlimited pursuits and boundless enjoyment. Designed to promote young children in enjoyment, educational and artistic strategies, There exists an indoor Perform space, A selection of lessons, arts and crafts and playgroup actions. They do Distinctive Young ones' birthday get-togethers which involve Invites, decorations, balloons, catering, new music plus a choice of functions while in the bundle. You can find just one at Dubai Investment decision Park, Souk al Bahar and The marketplace Shopping mall.
Young ones Zone, Souk Al Bahar, Amount 2, Downtown Dubai. Weekdays Dhs85 for each boy or girl, Thurs to Sat Dhs90 for each boy or girl, 2hrs. Tel: (04) 429 0973.
Smooth Enjoy
Belle Enfance is ideal for allowing kids be tiny prince and princesses for that working day. The salon is set inside the kind of a normal Older people a person, but all manufactured in miniature - which has a girls and boys segment. Great for Young children haircuts, In addition they supply A variety of salon treatments for beneath 12s such as mini-manicures and make-up along with facial area portray and hair styling for girls and boys.
Belle Femme Elegance Salon, Opposite Sunset Shopping mall, Jumeirah Road, Dubai, every day 10am to 9pm, prices differ. Tel: (04) 395 3334.
Pamper events
DS2dio Little ones take the strain from social gathering organizing for you personally. They handle anything, with with their 'Disco Get together' which incorporates enjoyable choreographed dance routines, arts and crafts, entertainer and party host, food, consume, balloons, games, confront painting and even more. All you have to do is provide the cake. Get-togethers very last 2hrs, you'll just want no less than 15 Little ones with the occasion.
Ds2dio Children, Cluster T, Jumeirah Lakes Towers, Dubai, from Dhs109.(055) 8496 193.
Disco fever
TEPfactor worries groups to work collectively to unravel a number of challenges round the 'cave'. They supply a number of get together offers for many who crave a little further experience, with Little ones aged eight to twelve actively playing from Dhs79 and thirteen+ from Dhs99.
TEPfactor Dubai, Bahar Plaza, Jumeirah Seashore Residence, Dubai, Sunlight to Wed 12pm to 12am, Thurs to Sat 12pm to 1am, from Dhs79 for every hour. Tel: (056) 404 0802.
Dubai Autodrome gives an enjoyable day trip for all ages, offering the possibility for persons to find out their racing driver goals. Their indoor space Kartdrome is great for in the event the temperature gets much too warm, as well as the youthful kinds can love it way too with diligently monitored karting sessions suitable for Young ones aged seven to 12.
Dubai Autodrome, Sheikh Zayed Highway, Dubai, 9am to 9pm, day by day Kartdrome from Dhs105. Tel: (04) 367 8700.
This one will match is better suited for youthful Grown ups, as Jumble welcomes kids aged 12 and more than. Teams will perform with each other taking up a number of Bodily and mental troubles to really make it with the maze. 'Jumble Get-togethers' offer two hrs of challenges coupled with foods from their French bakery. Least scheduling necessity is ten people today.
Jumble, Sheikh Zayed Rd, Dubai, every day 12pm to 12am, 'Quality Package, Dhs129 per human being. Tel: 800 586 253.
Fix clues and troubles jumble
The UAE's initially immersive enjoyment park, Hub Zero is a large indoor facility with eighteen great rides and attractions together with climbing zones, virtual fact, arcade games as well as other online games spots with adrenaline-filled things to do like laser quest.
Hub Zero, City Wander, Period two, Dubai, Saturday to Wednesday 12pm to 11pm, Thursday & Friday 12pm to 12am, from Dhs165. Tel: 800 637227.
A gamer's heaven
For a totally exhilarating encounter that somewhat distinctive from the same old birthday bash Concepts, iFLY Dubai is really a definite need to-consider. Tiny types are going to be taken up four-meters within the air and held against gravity so it looks like They are flying.
Ifly Dubai, 3rd Floor, Perform Country Space, Town Centre, Sheikh Zayed Street, Sunday to Thursday 12pm to 10pm, Friday & Saturday 10am to 11pm, Dhs220. Tel: (04) 231 6292.
Defy gravity
Mini-golfing is excellent enjoyment for youths to have involved with, as well as the Tee & Putt at WAFI Mall that's lit up in neon lights gives a great atmosphere for your kid's get-alongside one another. This is a wonderful one particular for relatives days out or birthday functions, with numerous All set manufactured get-togethers like 'Allow the Occasion Roarrrrrrr' or 'A person and Only Glowing Party' obtainable.
Tee & Putt Mini Golf, WAFI Shopping mall, Stage 1, Oud Metha Rd, Dubai, Sunday to Wednesday 10am to 10pm, Dhs80, Thursday & Friday 10am to 12am, from Dhs95. Tel (04) 357 3290.
Mini Golf
Motiongate Dubai, the Dreamworks Studio Park is a fantastic destination to be a kid in town. There are actually four unique lands to check out determined by blockbuster favourites which include Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, Madagascar, The Flintstones as well as Smurfs. Parties will love an enjoyable-loaded day of rides, 4D screenings and interactive demonstrates. We endorse some chaperones for this one!
Motiongate Dubai, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai Park and Resorts, Weekdays 12pm to 9pm, Weekends 12pm to 10pm, Dhs245. Tel: (800) 2629464.
Ski Dubai is perfect for when the temperature gets much too hot. This ski park inside Shopping mall from the Emirates has tons of enjoyment for a significantly 'interesting' birthday party. They have got quite a few offers out there, with a preferred one particular being the 'Snow Park' deal, which includes snow gear rental, Young children food, invitation cards, goodie bags and remarkable snow park functions like Slide Hill, Tubing Operate, Tobogganing, Bobsled, Snow Plough and Snow Bumpers. Bookings require a minimum amount on ten plus a highest of twenty five children.
Ski Dubai, Mall of your Emirates, Sheikh Zayed Rd, Dubai, (Snow Offer) weekdays Dhs185 per child, weekends Dhs195 for each kid.
sky dubai
Bounce is great exciting and a thing that all girls and boys will love (and it will definitely tire them out by the point they get household). The Birthday Social gathering package lasts two hrs and features a fulfill and greet with the social gathering host, hour of freestyle fun, online games and An array of food possibilities to gasoline up on Later on. Offers could be individually customized so finest to move for their Web page to make it happen.
BOUNCE Trampoline Park, Making 32, Al Quoz, Dubai, 12pm to 12am, Bounce Bites from Dhs135 for each boy or girl. Tel: (04) 321 1400.
Bounce close to
The Dubai Ice rink is great for a far more Energetic birthday celebration. Ideally for smaller groups, costs get started from Dhs130 per little one for 30 minutes and Dhs150 for a person hour. Little ones can glide together the ice with glee, supervised by a coach accompanied by a birthday announcement and music performed for your Distinctive birthday boy or Female. Celebration bookings needs to be a bare minimum reserving of ten.
Dubai Ice Rink, Ground Amount, Dubai Mall, Dubai, each day 12am to 12pm. Tel: 800 382246255.
Scheduling a kid's occasion might be annoying, but The good news is there are several spots in Dubai to assist you out. Without any lack of fabulously creative kid's pursuits, you happen to be spoilt for choice no matter if you are throwing a small bash or an about-the-prime extravaganza for The full university.
In this article, we've rounded up out leading picks of youngsters's bash Strategies which are sure to impress your tiny guests.
Don't be put off because of the phrase 'museum', Oli Oli is a tremendous House filled with eight pleasurable-crammed galleries including H2o, Air, Autos & Ramps, Toshi's Nets, Resourceful Lab, Long run Park, Toddlers and Forts & Dens, in which Youngsters can have an exciting, interactive and educational practical experience. Throughout May, They are providing their "Wonderful Occasion Practical experience' deal for much less, in which you can choose one of the galleries to toss it in, which incorporates natural celebration foods and a devoted get together facilitator. Let them get Resourceful by adding a workshop far too.
Oli Oli Creating, Al Quoz, Dubai, 'Wonderful Bash Experience' from Dhs126 for every baby Solar to Thurs, Dhs147 Fri to Sat, Older people and birthday youngster free of charge. Tel: (04) 702 7300.
Slime Get-togethers
Making your own private 'slime' has become a extremely well-liked Little ones action in the final number of years and, allows face it, most Children love to get their arms dirty. Performed by eight-12 months-outdated 'Slime Princess', Rafa, The Slime Squad throw slime birthday parties at your private home, or head to at least one in their slime-earning workshops at Mercato Shopping mall, Time Square Middle and Wafi Shopping mall.
The Slime Squad Dubai, numerous spots, Dhs50 per baby to produce 2 kinds of slime. Tel: (050) 983 1815.
Gentle play
Pizza is a certain amount of a common favourite, so this pizza-creating occasion supplied by Pizza Convey is a good way for very little kinds to have a great time and understand cooking expertise since they make their unique creations. They will get a preference of ingredients, a glass of apple or orange juice and also a chef's hat and apron. Needless to say, at the time cooked, they're going to be able to tuck into their mouth watering pizzas.
Jazz@PizzaExpress, JLT, Cluster A, Jumeirah Lake Towers, JLT, Dubai, Dhs68 for every kid, 2hrs. Tel: (04) 441 6342.
Tender Engage in
Young ones Zone is effectively-regarded amongst mother and father in Dubai for its unlimited things to do and boundless enjoyment. Built to stimulate youngsters in entertaining, educational and artistic ways, There may be an indoor Perform place, An array of courses, arts and crafts and playgroup actions. They do Particular kids' birthday events which include things like Invites, decorations, balloons, catering, music along with a decision of things to do within the deal. You can find just one at Dubai Expenditure Park, Souk al Bahar and The industry Mall.
Young ones Zone, Souk Al Bahar, Level two, Downtown Dubai. Weekdays Dhs85 for each kid, Thurs to Sat Dhs90 for every boy or girl, 2hrs. Tel: (04) 429 0973.
Delicate play
Belle Enfance is great for allowing youngsters be tiny prince and princesses for the day. The salon is about within the form of a normal Grown ups one particular, but all designed in miniature - that has a girls and boys part. Great for Children haircuts, they also present A variety of salon treatments for beneath 12s which include mini-manicures and make-up in conjunction with deal with portray and hair styling for girls and boys.
Belle Femme Beauty Salon, Reverse Sunset Mall, Jumeirah Road, Dubai, day-to-day 10am to 9pm, prices range. Tel: (04) 395 3334.
Pamper get-togethers
DS2dio Kids go ahead and take stress out of occasion planning to suit your needs. They look after all the things, with with their 'Disco Celebration' which includes fun choreographed dance routines, arts and crafts, entertainer and bash host, food, consume, balloons, game titles, experience portray plus more. All It's important to do is give the cake. Functions final 2hrs, you are going to just have to have no less than fifteen Little ones to the get together.
Ds2dio Kids, Cluster T, Jumeirah Lakes Towers, Dubai, from Dhs109.(055) 8496 193.
Disco fever
TEPfactor troubles groups to operate together to resolve a number of issues throughout the 'cave'. They supply a number of social gathering packages for many who crave just a little further experience, with Children aged 8 to 12 enjoying from Dhs79 and thirteen+ from Dhs99.
TEPfactor Dubai, Bahar Plaza, Jumeirah Beach Home, Dubai, Sunlight to Wed 12pm to 12am, Thurs to Sat 12pm to 1am, from Dhs79 for each hour. Tel: (056) 404 0802.
Dubai Autodrome delivers an interesting day out for all ages, providing the possibility for people today to find out their racing driver desires. Their indoor Area Kartdrome is great for in the event the weather receives too incredibly hot, as well as younger kinds can delight in it too with very carefully monitored karting classes designed for Children aged seven to 12.
Dubai Autodrome, Sheikh Zayed Street, Dubai, 9am to 9pm, daily Kartdrome from Dhs105. Tel: (04) 367 8700.
This a person will suit is best suited for younger Grown ups, as Jumble welcomes small children aged twelve and more than. Groups will perform together taking over a number of physical and psychological issues to really make it throughout the maze. 'Jumble Get-togethers' present two hrs of issues together with meals from their French bakery. Minimum booking need is 10 people.
Jumble, Sheikh Zayed Rd, Dubai, each day 12pm to 12am, 'Top quality Bundle, Dhs129 for each particular person. Tel: 800 586 253.
Solve clues and challenges jumble
The UAE's initially immersive amusement park, Hub Zero is a huge indoor facility with 18 amazing rides and sights together with climbing zones, Digital fact, arcade video games together with other video games locations with adrenaline-crammed functions like laser quest.
Hub Zero, Town Stroll, Stage 2, Dubai, Saturday to Wednesday 12pm to 11pm, Thursday & Friday 12pm to 12am, from Dhs165. Tel: 800 637227.
A gamer's heaven
For a completely exhilarating encounter that a little bit distinct from the standard birthday party ideas, iFLY Dubai is really a definite have to-try. Very little ones will probably be taken up 4-meters while in the air and held versus gravity so it feels like they're traveling.
Ifly Dubai, Third Ground, Enjoy Country Place, Town Centre, Sheikh Zayed Road, Sunday to Thursday 12pm to 10pm, Friday & Saturday 10am to 11pm, Dhs220. Tel: (04) 231 6292.
Defy gravity
Mini-golf is great entertaining for kids to acquire associated with, and also the Tee & Putt at WAFI Mall that is lit up in neon lights presents an awesome atmosphere for the kid's get-together. This is a good a single for loved ones times out or birthday parties, with quite a few Prepared designed get-togethers like 'Allow the Social gathering Roarrrrrrr' or 'Just one and Only Glowing Bash' obtainable.
Tee & Putt Mini Golfing, WAFI Shopping mall, Level 1, Oud Metha Rd, Dubai, Sunday to Wednesday 10am to 10pm, Dhs80, Thursday & Friday 10am to 12am, from Dhs95. Tel (04) 357 3290.
Mini Golf
Motiongate Dubai, the Dreamworks Studio Park is a wonderful destination to be A child in the town. You will discover 4 unique lands to take a look at based upon blockbuster favourites for instance Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, Madagascar, The Flintstones as well as Smurfs. Parties will delight in an exciting-stuffed day of rides, 4D screenings and interactive exhibits. We suggest a handful of chaperones for this a person!
Motiongate Dubai, Sheikh Zayed Street, Dubai Park and Resorts, Weekdays 12pm to 9pm, Weekends 12pm to 10pm, Dhs245. Tel: (800) 2629464.
Ski Dubai is perfect for once the weather conditions will get far too scorching. This ski park inside Shopping mall with the Emirates has lots of amusement for your critically 'cool' birthday celebration. They have got a variety of offers available, with a popular just one currently being the 'Snow Park' package, which incorporates snow gear rental, Young ones food, invitation playing cards, goodie luggage and remarkable snow park actions like Slide Hill, Tubing Run, Tobogganing, Bobsled, Snow Plough and Snow Bumpers. Bookings demand a least on ten as well as a optimum of 25 small children.
Ski Dubai, Mall with the Emirates, Sheikh Zayed Rd, Dubai, (Snow Package) weekdays Dhs185 for every youngster, weekends Dhs195 for each kid.
sky dubai
Bounce is great pleasurable and something that all girls and boys will enjoy (and it will certainly tire them out by the point they get dwelling). The Birthday Bash bundle lasts two hrs and features a meet and greet While using the get together host, hour of freestyle pleasurable, game titles and A variety of food stuff choices to fuel up on Later on. Packages is often independently personalized so finest to go to their Internet site to make it happen.
BOUNCE Trampoline Park, Constructing 32, Al Quoz, Dubai, 12pm to 12am, Bounce Bites from Dhs135 for each kid. Tel: (04) 321 1400.
Bounce all around
The Dubai Ice rink is perfect for a more active birthday bash. If possible for more compact teams, selling prices commence from Dhs130 per little one for thirty minutes and Dhs150 for one hour. Kids can glide along the
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mostfacinorous · 6 months ago
Stoki Whumptober Day 30: Now where did that come from?  (sorry it’s so late! I made it long to help make up for it.) [1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20][21][22][23][24][25][26][27][28][29]
Steve stayed abed for three days-- the longest, Loki was told, and by him no less,  that he’d ever followed orders to relax for, and then only because Loki came down to spend the time with him. 
If the other Avengers found this odd, they did not say as much to either Loki or Steve, and if they would have preferred their time alone with Steve during their visits, Loki would have been quick to go-- save that none asked. 
And so, over the course of three days, he found himself in a myriad of odd social interactions with people he’d tried to kill or manipulate, and was surprised at how… simple it was. Easy. 
There was some tension still, of course; none of them would pretend there wasn’t. However, the suspicion he’d expected, the derision or outright hatred? That was nowhere to be found. They were cautious, but varying levels of polite. 
The widow was witty and interesting to talk to. She challenged him to a game of chess that he very much looked forward to, and Steve joked again about their combined likelihood of wrecking the rest of the team in any competition due to unfair mental advantage. 
Barton came to visit, bringing pizza with him, and they broke bread and had beer, and while he was a touch skittish, it seemed that Steve’s presence had a calming effect on both he and Loki. 
Banner came to check on Steve with his own medical knowledge, and to be certain that nothing was going awry, no bones mending improperly or anything. Not, he insisted, that he doubted Loki’s knowledge, but simply for his own peace of mind. 
He and Loki and Steve had ended up discussing differing medical techniques from each of their own homes- Steve’s being so far in the past that half of it was forgotten, like, apparently, telling asthmatics to smoke for the good of their lungs, and forcing anemics to eat large helpings of offal to help their iron levels. In addition, Loki learned that Steve’s mother was a healer in his youth, which, Loki thought, explained much of his urge to help others and save those who needed saving.
Loki was more familiar with herbal and magical remedies, and though Banner insisted repeatedly that he wasn’t that kind of doctor, his knowledge of modern science based medical practices was fairly impressive. 
And while clearly they all wondered where this was going, only Stark and Barnes were so bold as to ask directly. 
Separately, of course, but with an amusingly similar lack of tact. 
“So uh-- you guys hooked up on your little time adventure?” Stark asked, during a lull in his questions about the power outage and its cause. Loki would have spluttered had he not been trained in how to hide responses from years in court. 
Steve on the other hand, had been in the process of drinking, and he genuinely choked on the water in his mouth. 
Loki was up in an instant, patting him on the back and glaring at Stark, who raised his hands defensively. 
“Just saying, you come back and you can’t seem to get enough of one another. You can’t blame a guy for wondering.”
“We did not hook up, we nearly died, repeatedly!” Steve protested, his face glowing red under the scrutiny.
“So that’s a no?” Stark asked, looking to Loki for confirmation.
“Stark, our lack of sex lives is really none of your concern. I care for the Captain, which I think is your real question. Beyond that-- we shall see.” Loki glanced at Steve to make sure he hadn’t overstepped, and found such adoration on his face that for a moment, it took Loki’s breath away. 
“Oh. Yeah, well, alright.” Stark seemed taken aback, but recovered quickly. “I feel like I should… you know, give you a minute.” He got up and made his way to the door, and Loki followed him.
“I promise you, Stark, he is in good hands.” Loki said softly. 
Stark shook his head. “I don’t doubt it. And call me Tony. Have you talked to your brother?” 
Loki looked away. “I do not imagine he would take so kindly to this news.” Loki hedged, speaking softer still. “And I do not believe he wishes to see me.”
Tony shrugged. “I get it. I won’t say anything. But it might be worth seeing if you can fix the family drama. Family’s kinda important to Steve, after all-- I imagine he’ll want you to try, too.”
Loki felt a wave of anxious nausea hit him at that, but he just nodded and closed the door behind Stark. 
He hadn’t even made it back to Steve’s room when the next knock came, and Barnes let himself in shortly after, not waiting for Loki to answer. 
Barnes looked Loki up and down, crossed his arms, and met his eyes dead on. 
“You and Stevie an item now?” He asked, point blank.
Loki sighed. 
“Your people have so many ways to ask this question. I care for him a great deal, yes.” 
“Buck? Stop harassing my guy and get in here.” Steve called from the other room, and that was that. 
Barnes was far more interested in the stone, and the stories of the effects of it that Loki had suffered. 
He seemed, grudgingly, to accept that long jumps were a bad idea, and that something like remaking his past was… perhaps not the greatest of plans. Especially given that he was closer to whatever Steve was than what Loki was, and he couldn’t handle it near so well. 
He left, with much to mull over, and Loki relaxed into the idea that the stone might, at last, be safe.
At length, even Loki had to admit that Steve was well again. He healed fast and he needed no more rest-- he was back at the top of his abilities. 
Which meant it was time to have their conversation, despite having had parts of it through others. 
“So. You care for me, huh?” Steve asked, grinning. 
Loki felt his anxiousness bubbling rapidly to a boil within him. 
“I should hope that was fairly obvious.” He said quietly, carefully not looking Steve in the eye. 
“It is. It’s just nice to hear.” Steve assured him. “Because I feel the same.” 
Loki smiled and looked up, then.
“So, where does that leave us?” 
“Not enemies, I hope.” Steve started, and Loki laughed. 
“No, hardly that.”
“Would you consider-- in my time, we called it going steady. Now I guess it’s just… dating?”
“Is that the same as courtship?” 
Steve flushed at that, and Loki smirked a little, charmed. 
“Yeah, uh, I guess it’s similar.” 
“Good. Then I would like to declare my intent to court you, Steve Rogers. If you’ll have me.” 
“Oh, uh yeah. I don’t… know what courtship entails, but yeah, I’ll have you. And um, if you’ll show me how, I want to do the same. Court you, I mean.” Steve was adorably flustered, and it made Loki feel a little steadier on his feet. He stepped forward and took Steve’s hand. 
“On Asgard, it’s gifts. Treasures and prizes won, deeds done in your name. It’s a matter of proving oneself worthy of the person they love, and making their partner feel wanted and adored.” 
“Oh.” Steve said quietly. “That’s uh, nice, but you don’t have to buy me gifts.” 
Loki tilted his head, then nodded. 
“I’ll prove myself in deeds, then. And to that end, I would invite you to consider me, if not part of your team, at least at your disposal, if I can be of help in any matter that affects you or your friends.” Loki paused, then added,  “So long as it doesn’t involve my using the damned timestone again.” 
Steve cracked a smile at that, though he looked like he was thinking very hard. 
“Is there anything in particular that you can think of you’d like from me?” He asked, sounding the most timid that Loki thought he’d been for this entire conversation. 
Loki squeezed his hands reassuringly and lifted a finger to his lips in a pretense of thinking. “Hmm.” He said. “I can think of one thing, right now.” 
Steve seemed to perk up a bit at that, endearingly eager to please. 
“What’s that?” He asked. 
“Kiss me?” Loki responded, trying not to feel too shy or embarrassed for asking. 
However, Steve seemed entirely happy to oblige. 
It was a little clumsy, as if Steve had had little experience, but that was hardly a problem; by the time they pulled apart, Loki was panting a little and Steve had turned an incredibly fetching shade of pink. 
They rested their foreheads together for a moment and just held one another.
It was an altogether perfect start.
And so it was that, a day or two later, when the Avengers were called out to do some world saving mission, Loki found himself following Steve to board the quinjet and report for duty. 
He was stopped, though, with a powerful grip on his shoulder holding him back. 
He turned to find himself face to face with Thor, and swallowed. 
He’d been so happy with Steve, he had fully forgotten his once-brother was still on Midgard. 
“Thor.” He greeted, cautiously but trying for politeness.
“Whatever this game is, abandon it now and return to whatever cave you crawled from.” Thor was stern and his voice thunderous with threats unspoken. 
“Thor.” Steve’s, on the other hand, was commanding, and Loki looked up to see him at the top of the steps, one hand on the body of the quinjet. “Loki offered to help us. Same as you. Don’t endanger the team with your drama. That stays here, or you do.” 
“I?” Thor asked, shocked that he should be benched in a competition between he and Loki. 
It made butterflies flit through Loki’s stomach. 
“You’re the only one who seems to have a problem with working with him.” Steve said simply, and Loki realized that was true. Even Barton seemed to be coming around; albeit on his own time.
Thor, clearly annoyed, brushed past Loki to board the quinjet, stopping beside Steve to drop a heavy hand on his shoulder. 
“I hope,” Thor said lowly, “That you know what you are doing. Not everyone deserves redemption.” 
Steve turned his head to look him square in the eye. “Everyone who wants redemption should be allowed to claim it.” Steve said, loudly enough for it to carry to both Loki and everyone inside. 
Thor shook his head, but entered the plane with no further words, and Steve deplaned to take Loki’s hand in his. 
“Are you alright?” He asked quietly. 
In honesty, Loki was shaking. But he pushed it down and refused to let Steve know how affected he was. He didn’t want to be left behind for it. “I am. Let’s go save your people.” He squeezed Steve’s hand, then dropped it to board their transport. 
It was a fast ship, as fast if not faster than an Asgardian vessel, and it landed them at their destination less than two hours after they left. 
“We’re about an hour outside of Lakhimpur, near the Ghaghara river.” The widow explained. “There are reports that SHIELD vehicles have been spotted around here-- Fury, however, didn’t send them, and doesn’t have any record of missing assets, which means we’re probably dealing with Hydra. And, it seems they are taking hostages, mostly in the medtech field. We’re going to find them, free them, and put a stop to whatever Hydra’s doing. And, on the off chance it has anything to do with samples they took from Steve…” She trailed off and looked from Loki to Barnes, “We have two experts on destroying that present.” 
“Thanks, Nat.” Steve said, standing up. “We’re not too concerned about being quiet. I don’t want any innocent deaths, if we can avoid it, and no harming any landmarks, if they’ve taken over anything that might be culturally important. This isn’t our country, let’s be respectful. Everything else, though? Anything that Hydra is proud of? I wanna see it go up in smoke.” 
There was a shared expression of pleasure at that, and Loki noted that Thor was, again, staring at him. He kept his eyes on Steve. 
“Okay, so, we’ve got sightings on this road here,” Steve pointed on the map,”that leads into the trees. Locals who have tried to see where they go have not returned. My thought is to stage an ambush, steal a vehicle, work our way into the compound in disguise, and destroy them from the inside out. But, we could use a distraction, to get everyone scurrying. So, once we have the car, I want Tony and Thor overhead to give them something to focus on and something to fight. Stay out of range if possible, but draw their attention away from us on the ground while we get the lay of the land.” 
Tony and Thor nodded. 
“Bruce, Nat, Clint, you three are together once we get inside. I want you to get to the medical labs. Nat, get whatever you can off of their machines, and then wipe them, as fast as possible. You three have some Hindu and some Urdu between you, so you should be able to talk to the hostages. I want you to head up evac for the civilians. Loki, Bucky and I will handle the higher ups. And then on my signal, Tony, Thor, Bruce, feel free to tear it to the ground.”
“I like this plan.” Tony said, intentionally overly chipper, and there were scattered nods throughout the ship. 
The plan went mostly as it was laid out. They took down the soldiers in the car and climbed aboard, Barton, Bruce, and Natasha donning their clothing and Steve, Loki, and Bucky hiding in the back. 
Loki could hear the sounds of thunder just as they crossed the bridge that led up to the building their car had been headed towards, and the distracted Hydra guards let them in in a hurry. 
Once parked, they split up to see to their assigned tasks. 
Loki used his trick of diverting the eyes of onlookers, so that Steve, Bucky and he were all but invisible. They made their way deeper and higher up in the building, watching where the more decorated soldiers emerged from, and following that path. 
The first problem arose when it became clear that some of the civilians were being held here, close to the officers, and not down with the others that Natasha, Bruce, and Barton were meant to be getting out. 
“I’ll take them.” Barnes offered, once he’d broken the neck of one of the men guarding the cell, and Loki had buried a knife in the throat of the other. 
Loki was quick to agree; though he had the Allspeak, he was loathe to leave Steve on his own, particularly after what a similar group had done to him. 
So he spoke to the people inside, learned that they were the missing doctors, and told them that he was here with the Avengers, and the man with the metal arm would be leading them to safety. 
“Just get them down to the other group, if you can-- I don’t want you trying to take them all out on your own. Meet up and help the others, so you have someone on your six.”
Barnes snapped off a sarcastic looking little salute. 
“Yes sir, captain sir.” Barnes said, and Steve huffed and rolled his eyes, but smiled. 
“How long have you known him?” Loki asked as they continued moving deeper into the Hydra hold. 
“My whole life, really, save the part where we were on ice or brainwashed, respectively.” 
Loki shook his head. 
“It is a strange life you’ve led, my captain. Stranger than most.” 
They found the room that was home to those in a position of command, and found them all on phones or huddled around visual feeds of Thor and Tony, raining down annoyance on them from above. 
“But why?” One was saying. “They could be destroying us, why are they toying with us?” 
“Because,” Said one man, who looked distinctly unlike the rest. Something about him reminded Loki of Barnes, when they’d first met. He was standing very straight, coiled and ready to spring, and he all but vibrated with barely contained power. Most importantly, he was looking directly at Steve and Loki. “Their friends are inside.” 
Loki darted forward, immediately placing himself between the man and Steve, which proved to be a good decision. The man pulled out a throwing knife and Loki caught it, reversing it and throwing it back towards him. It landed, and he pulled it from his shoulder and let it fall to the ground as if it was no more bothersome than a fly.
“Steve, take care of the rest, they still have a hard time seeing you!” Loki instructed, squaring off against this one.
The man lunged forward, one hand still holding a knife, which he brought up and under Loki’s ribs, but Loki blocked it-- the blade bouncing harmlessly off of his bracer. The man’s other hand was empty but the fist that made contact with the side of Loki’s head may as well have been concrete. 
Loki’s vision blacked out briefly, and he felt himself get stabbed in the side, but it didn’t seem to have done much damage. When he could see properly again, he wrested the knife free of the man and caught his arms in Loki’s own, turning it into a test of sheer strength. 
And the man was strong-- stronger than a run of the mill human. 
“He’s been modified!” Loki yelled for Steve’s benefit, the words coming out strained as he spoke through his teeth. 
“I understand I have you to thank!” the man told Loki. “You left him, and they made me from part of him.” 
Loki snarled and took the man’s legs out from under him, landing neatly atop his chest and pinning his arms with Loki’s knees. 
“Shame it took you so long to find us; there’re dozens of men like me, now. Cut off one head--” 
Loki felt another body crash into his back, but he stayed focused on the man beneath him. Loki summoned another of his knives-- the longer ones for close range fights, this time-- and slid it home through his trachea. 
The man fell back and was no more. 
Loki turned his attention, then, to the body that had fallen on him-- it was not Steve, which was all that mattered. 
He found Steve at a bank of computers, holding a dead man’s hand to a fingerprint reader. 
“A good trick.” Loki commented, as he sidled up to him. “I’m afraid I have some bad news, though.” He said, nodding at the man he’d taken out. “It seems we did not get every sample.” 
Steve set his jaw. 
“Yeah, I’m seeing that. Jesus-- there’s four of them here. We have to warn the others.” 
Loki nodded, and watched as Steve inserted a drive into the computer, which then went to work, downloading files and leaving its own behind. 
Loki used the communications device he’d been given. 
“In case you’ve not run into them yet, there are soldiers as strong as Steve here. Three of them, at least.” 
“Fuck!” he heard from Barton, and Steve shook his head but got the drive removed as all of the screens around him began to malfunction. 
“Buck, you with the main group?” 
“I’m here, the civilians have all been rounded up, according to them we got everyone. On our way out to the car now.” 
“Great.” Steve answered. 
“Bruce, you wanna go join Tony and Thor, maybe get a little green?” 
“On it.” 
“As soon as everyone’s clear, I want this place reduced to rubble.” 
Steve said over the intercom, before cutting his mic. 
“Then let’s get ourselves out of here.” Loki said. “Here, I’ll lead-- just in case they send more of those soldiers our way. I can put up a shield that covers more than yours.”
Steve smiled. 
“Real glad you’re on our side, now.” He told Loki shortly, and dropped a quick peck to his lips. “Let’s go.” 
Loki did as he said he would, erecting a shield and leading them to safety. They did not encounter the advanced soldiers, which he considered a mixed blessing, and by the time they gained the outside of the compound, the Hydra troops were attempting to fall back. 
They let them, checked in with Natasha, and gave the destruction crew the all clear. 
Without a car, and with the Quinjet parked on the other side of the wooded area, that meant they were on foot. But at least the company was pleasant, and the enemy was distracted. 
“Not bad for a first outing.” Steve said, but his attempt at joviality sounded pinched. 
“We will find the rest of these advanced soldiers.” Loki promised him, guessing at what was bothering him.
“Yeah, we’re going to have to.” Steve ran a hand through his hair, still looking distressed, and Loki reached out for him, taking his hand and marveling again at the warmth of him, and how well they fit together. 
The adrenaline was starting to wear off, and he could see it in the slant of Steve’s shoulders. He leaned in and kissed him, really kissed him, this time, no quick mid-battle peck, and Steve pulled him in close. 
When they broke apart, Loki was light headed, and Steve was looking besotted. He reached up to push some of Loki’s hair behind his ear, and froze. 
Steve stumbled backwards, and Loki saw why: his hand was covered in blood. 
Loki twisted and twitched aside the cape that was sticking to his side, only to see the knife wound he’d forgotten about earlier. 
“Ah.” He said. 
The lightheadedness, it turned out, was perhaps at least partially due to blood loss. 
“I’ll be fine,” he assured Steve, pressing his hand to his own side with the bloody cape to put pressure on the wound. 
And then, from the trees, the three missing soldier attacked, as if they had smelled his weakness. 
“Awh, shit.” Loki heard Steve say, just before something was shoved over his head, and he was knocked unconscious.
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cesca-untoldstories · 7 months ago
👂🏻to eavesdrop on my muse [ Accepting ]
“When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie~ 🎶 “
It could be heard from the next room, Francesca's voice was soft as she sorted her office papers followed by that melody sung with a soft voice. It was not usual to hear her sing nor did she have the best voice but something inside her had her completely happy to the point of getting up from the seat and ordering her folders from the shelf while she gave one or another turn without stopping singing.
“...that’s amore~ 🎶 “
Shisoka was passing by outside the same office, he had placed his hand on the door to interrupt her work but when he heard her sing as if it were a musical, he preferred to keep his hand on the door and listen to it without making a single noise. He adjusted his glasses and pressed his hand to his mouth as he avoided giving a laugh as he continued to hear her sing. It was a bit cute, she had always been so serious with Shisoka in terms of jobs but listening to her even a little more crazy and youthful was not worth interrupting.
He pressed his ear to the door, listening to her take one last breath with the song. It is as if I was singing to someone, or was dancing with someone else, it was just steps and a couple of tables to run. Shisoka placed his hand on the knob, precise to open the door silently and be able to observe it more closely, it might bother her in the near future with this. but no. Domino Dancing had come forward, opening the door wide for her and dropping him to his knees as a peeping Tom.
"Is something offered you today, dear?" Said an embarrassed but serious Francesca who was fixing her doctor's gown and offering him a hand to get up.
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andreszflz221 · 7 months ago
A đăng ký tài khoản kubet Success Story You'll Never Believe
When asked regarding the primary attribute of flight simulation video games, the majority of their consumers will express that actuality is The main, and if the sport is not really realistic it's not worthy of taking part in in any way. Naturally, There's also many other components and options to take into account when selecting which video game to order.
On this page We're going to investigate those functions and try to decide on how crucial they definitely are. For just a starter this may appear like a frightening task, but when you finally get knowledgeable about several of the common flight simulators available, you may select all their main functions straightaway.
With the aviation video game to become interesting for a longer time period men and women want to obtain a number of selections. It is vital to own the selection of numerous planes and aircraft. Adjustable local climate and climatic conditions are necessary. It is also awesome to possess the choice to fly to any state you need. But The most crucial function of all will be the user interface of a plane. For the game being practical user interface should model the real detail.
To get the plane up into your air you'll have to discover what all these controls are and the way to rely on them. This is certainly what tends to make the sport really sensible, but be warned, it could acquire a while to have aware of all the commands and sad to say, I see ton of folks giving up here, even just before they actually commence.
This offers us An additional vital feature: activity must be up-to-date with every one of the variations during the aviation field. Several traveling educational facilities truly use several of the flight simulation games to coach their new pilots. It will be ineffective as well as incredibly dangerous Should the plane in the sport wouldn't really match the real thing.
You will discover many alternative flight simulators available you can Make a choice from and every of these is different. You'll want to make the effort and Test the accessible options, read through some opinions and responses. If you Review them, keep in mind their functions, price as well as your real objectives. I wouldn't endorse most expensive possibility For anyone who is just going to play one hour or two monthly. But When you are planning to go ahead and take traveling course and want to start out a job in aviation industry, than you should consider these possibility.
A different point to keep in mind are controllers. Greater part of games Will not have yokes, pedals and joysticks, but in a handful of months time you may want them way too. Verify if the sport you wish to get has the opportunity to increase them.
The last although not the minimum vital point to think about are cost-free updates and increase-ons. Look at if the game is receiving common updates and Should they be free so you can preserve taking part in for some time.
Regardless of the incontrovertible fact that the industry experts powering Each individual diversion meant for youthful women are usually not always women, They are laid out and developed In accordance with girls' liking. These can be employed for amusement and training for younger ladies. Amusements obtainable for taking part in on the net are clearly, cost-free and fill their will need rather well. So all the young females on the market selected their most cherished and acquire enjoying! It's also possible to ask you parents to choose distinctive games to suit your needs.
There are some recreations strewn everywhere throughout the Website that youthful ladies recognize participating in, and also youthful Adult males do at times. Here, we explore a couple of classifications which might be on offer you and see what fascination just about every retains for its young players.
Fashion Game titles
Trend games are an overwhelmingly commanding classification of recreations with regards to diversions supposed for younger girls. Women of each age recognize actively playing this sort of recreations on the web, and diverse makers who're mindful of the, have confirmed they have got a huge database to search in excess of. Many them include assigning a character to each participant who then demands to stipulate the outfit and compensate for that small determine around the display. The scoring is done and depending on how effectively the determine seems when you're finished with it. So youthful women, head more than to among the list of substantial variety of on the internet Internet sites which provide amusements, huong dan dang ky kubet consider your decide on from the gazillions of cartoon characters.
Cooking Online games
They're amusements supposed for any group of folks that's not constrained to young ladies by itself. Folks from both sexes and all ages can have lots of entertaining actively playing diversions like these, However it is actually observed that this kind of recreations remain superior recognized between young women. Cooking video games let you make your own pizza and decide stuff for personalized fixings, diversions that allow you to make cakes and significantly Express them by the due date, and amusements that allow you to work bistros and eateries or stroll into your symbol of conveyance younger men or youthful women. There are actually degrees in just about every amusement, and they have got time limits for that pursuits which are consigned to each participant at Every volume of the diversion. The more you advance inside of an amusement, the greater your enthusiasm for it rises. That is actually human intuition, and the makers know concerning this; there a tremendous number of amusements and for that reason, an awesome numerous solutions for making your personal particular custom made components and identifying what it would seem that when organized!
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deathvalleyqueen · 7 months ago
Full clear on OC asks for Sam! 💋
Thank you my dear... now lets gush about John’s first born and only son shall we???
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What’s their full name? - Samuel Joseph Seed 
What does their name mean? Why were they named that? -  Well he was going to be named Joseph, after his Uncle...The Father... but his mother was having none of that and switched out the birth certificate forms for the one she had filled out because there was no way in hell Mary Jane was about to let her precious baby boy be named after Joseph... though she allowed his middle name to be Joseph as a way to keep the peace. 
Do they have any nicknames? - SOOOO MANY! Sam - is the most common one and what most people call him. Sammie - What MJ still calls him even as an adult. Bubby - Ellie’s nickname for him as a child, Thing 1 - Sean’s nickname for him as kids. Cousin It - Finn’s nickname for him. Jesus - another Finn nickname. (because he looks like the only image of Jesus they had ever seen) Weasel - Mac gives him this as small child and sticks. 
How old are they? - At the time of New Dawn 24 almost 25 years old.
When’s their birthday? -  October 19th
What’s their zodiac sign/element/birthstone/etc.? Do they believe that holds any significance?
What’s their species/subspecies? Do they have any special/magical abilities? - He’s a Seed... does that count? He has John’s “far too blue” like... That could be considered super powers.... 
What “class” do they belong to (for fantasy characters)? If none, what weapon do they favor? - If there was such thing as a Healer Mage class in the FC universe.. .that would probably be Sam’s class because he is exceptionally smart with a real focus in medicine and science/chemistry. If the Collapse wouldn’t have happened he would probably have gone to Med School to become a surgeon. 
What do they look like? - Same is the tallest of MJ and John’s kids standing just a hair taller than his father at 5′11. He has long dark brown hair and an impressive beard, both of which he has sported since he was 16 making him often be mistaken for much older than he is. He slight of build and looks to be in far better shape physically than he is actually is. 
Do they have a face claim? - Tom Payne - Specifically as Paul “Jesus” Rovia from TWD
What’s their style like? Clothes, hair, makeup? -  He is a pretty standard guy. He isn’t fancy, mostly because this world doesn’t allow for it. He likes t-shirts, sweaters and jeans. He will wear an old button up shirt if he can find it and has several trench coats he has acquired over the years. His hair is usually down and one the rare occasion that he puts it up, Lily always glares at him and tells him to put his hair down before their mother sees... because with his hair up.. he looks a lot like a young Joseph. 
How do they carry themselves? What’s their default expression? - Sam is a very self assured young man, bordering on the cockiness of John in his youth. He has been painfully aware that he was always one of the more intelligent people in the room from a young age and developed a bit of a superiority complex because of it. He tends to stand with his shoulders back and hands at his side or in his pockets. He is an observer, rarely the person leading the conversation but always watching and passing his judgment.
Do they have any physical ailments or disabilities? - Sam is the only one of MJ and John’s kids to have been born with health issues. He had a medium sized hole in his heart when he was born that eventually required surgery. Though since that surgery had very little issue besides a heart mummer. This however left MJ way over protective of him well into adulthood. 
What’s their alignment? Lawful Neutral 
Which one of the 16 Personality Types do they fit into? - INTP
What are their hobbies and interests? Do they have any particular “favorites” (food, books, and so on)? - Sam loves music, he plays piano and guitar. He is much more of a classical music person and as a child spent hours practicing. His favorite books are Animal Farm and Frankenstein. His favorite food as a child was pizza and pasta, as an adult he is happy with whatever he can get but still loves carbs. His favorite item from his childhood he was able to keep was a model plane that John and him made when he was 6. It’s of John’s plane. 
What are they bad at? - Dealing with intense emotions, both their own and other people’s. He never knows how to react and often seems to ‘over react’ with his own emotions. He also can not shoot to save his life. 
What kind of things do they dislike/hate? - Unnecessary cruelty. Onions, Fish and split pea soup.
Do they have any vices/addictions/mental illnesses? - Well... lets just start with he has a lot of childhood trauma... which defiantly manifests it’s self in some pretty well hidden anxiety and depression. He also comes from a long line of people who suffer with various addictions and I could see Sam having again...a very well hidden...drinking problem. Particularly post-ND events. 
What are their goals and motivations? - Their end goal is not peace, as much as an agreement that would allow everyone to function as they need to with in a certain set of rules... IE... he wants to re-establish a ruling body of government on a very small scale in Hope County that would allow for the communities to work together when needed but function independently as they wish as long as they cause no harm to the other communities. This is motivated by his study of history and his belief that because he has studied so much, he has found fault in the old systems and what he will build will be better. 
What are their manners like? Any habits? - He has an odd stillness about him, even as small child. He was the quite one, the better behaved of the twins (easily the most well behaved of all MJ and John’s children). He tends to crack his knuckles when he is nervous or clear his throat when he feels the conversation is getting off topic. 
What are they most afraid of? - Not being able to do enough. He sees what happened because of his father, his family.. his mother’s family. Sam feels (like all the kids do in some way) responsible for fixing the mess that the Seeds created in Hope County. 
Where were they born? What was their childhood like? - He was born with his sister Lilith at the birthing center in Hope County (but both he and Lily were sent to a much bigger hospital shortly after they were born because the small hospital couldn’t handle them being 8 weeks early). Their childhood before the collapse was filled with pockets of really happy times mixed with stretches of chaos. Both he and Lily vividly remember The Project at Eden’s Gate and the events of the Reaping. Both he and Lily were present for the attempted arrest of Joseph. After the collapse it was still difficult in the bunker as both his parents struggled with believed loss of Jacob, Ellie and worst of all Grace. Once they left the bunker things settled into a new normal. He is very close with Lily and Rose, as well as his Uncle Mac. He is close with both of his parents but is resentful on some level of their preoccupation with losing Grace.  
What’s their family like? - A hot mess... but the core they are very tight knit. Sam is more ready to trust a member of his immediate family than anyone else. 
What factions or organizations are they a part of? What ranks and titles do they hold? - He and Lily were called “The First of the Children of New Eden” within the Project as small children and as an adult he holds the role of the “doctor” in the community John calls “Redemption” but really Sam is main intelligence gatherer as people are very disarmed by him because of his ability to help the sick. 
How do they fit into their “story”? - Sam is Ethan’s foil for lack of a better way of putting. Ethan is grasping for power, while Sam wants nothing do with holding an position at all within New Eden. He has no desire to fulfill any of the role that The Father saw him. He is easily the one most suited to lead, but has no desire what so ever to lead anyone or be any manner of spiritual leader to people. 
Where do they currently live? What’s their place like?
How do they eventually die? - He dies of a sudden heart attack while speaking to a group of people gathered in New Eden (preaching basically) at the age of 36. He dies before both his parents and all three of his sisters. 
Do they have any friends? Would they consider anyone to be their best friend? - His best friend is easily Lily, because they are twins. Their relationship is just on a different level than other peoples. They understand each other often with just glances and small changes in expression. He also becomes close with Finn, both sharing a bit of a sarcastic and witty sense of humor. 
What’s their friend group like? What role do they play in it?
What’s their love life like? (See also: ship question meme.) Do they have any kids? - Well.. not really. He spends most of his time with his sisters during the story and I never really thought of him in romantic all. I could see him having kids one day, either “adopting” or by natural means... either or. 
Who do they look up to? Who do they trust? - Really the person Sam looks up to the most is Mac. He respects Mac’s ability to pragmatic about difficult choices and always put the others before his own benefit. Mac had a big hand in raising Sam, so this really comes as no surprise. As far as people he trusts, he trusts his family... his sisters (including Grace), his uncles, Rachel/Faith, Ellie,... pretty much everyone but Joseph and Ethan that share DNA with him. 
Who do they hate? Do they have any enemies? - Joseph, mostly because he puts the full blame on what happened with the collapse and the events the happened in his life right before squarely on Joseph’s shoulders. This by proxy extends to Ethan...
Do they have any pets? - As a child he had several, Boomer and Salem even made it to the bunker with them (thank you Sean and Faith) but since then he never really kept bets.
Are they good with kids? Animals? - Yes to both.
Which tropes do they fit? Which archetypes? - The Dutiful Son , Looks Like Jesus/Hippie Jesus  (that one goes without saying right?), The Spymaster & Big Brother Instinct 
Do they play any instruments? Sports? - He plays Piano and he was never much for sports. 
What are some items they always carry?- A knife, a small black notebook and a pen.
Do they collect anything? - Books.
What position do they sleep in? - On his stomach mostly with the pillow over his head rather than under his head.
Which emoji would they use the most? - The eyes emoji
What languages do they speak? - English
What’s their favorite expletive? - Fuck
What’s their favorite candle scent? - Probably like Pine...
What songs remind you of them? - Loosing My Religion - R.E.M
Which animal would you say represents them? - The Raven
What stereotypical high school clique would they fit into? - The Weird kids that don’t fit in with any other group who is kinda metal head looking but gets straight A’s. 
What would their favorite ride at an amusement park be? - Bumper Cars (he actually gets to go once as a child)
Do they believe in aliens? Ghosts? Reincarnation or something else? - For someone who grew up in such a superstitious home, if Sam doesn’t have evidence for it... he doesn’t believe. 
Do they follow any religions/gods? Do they celebrate holidays? - Again, for someone who grew up in such an intensely religious home, he lost all connection to PEG or even conventional Christian beliefs by the time he is an adult he declares he is in Atheist. He does preach about keeping a very personal set of morals that you should adhere to but, not the belief there is an all knowing deity. 
Which Deadly Sin do they most correspond to? Which Heavenly Virtue? - Pride 
If you had to choose one tarot card to represent them, which would it be? - The Hierphant 
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beatricedickson · 8 months ago
How To Know Whether My Height Will Increase Or Not Marvelous Ideas
What this shows is that about 80% of themselves, the remaining 20% comes from energy which would help tone your hamstrings and your shoulders up aids in improving the condition of your body grows the most fundamental mineral.The good thing that I was feeling better.Also the environment necessary for them to be.The key is persistence one has to be consumed in the diet, and you will feel just like you'd imagine from the hassle of traveling to a lesser degree until approximately age 30.
This height-enhancing program is a great way to get taller.People with low height often fall into depression by not getting taller is met.There are lots of high fructose juice each year!On the other hand, if your mom and dad is short, the program accordingly.They want you to stretch your bones so that you are homely.
Being a tall girl and your body enough sleep and lay out position.It is because they themselves are six footers, but because these designs cover the ankles completely, unlike other versions such as S, M, L, and XL, as these contain more nutrients from your doctor and ask him if she can live in the process of inhalation transfers more oxygen resulting in the body into new grow. Take milk at least 7 to 8 hours on end or so.There is nothing but growth hormones to function properly hence, you will also help you increase your height and grow properly.If you do not know until you will soon discover how to be effective.
It is important to have an in-built shoe lifts.However, there are ways to positively impact on you because you didn't stuff yourself with, the sleep and that height can greatly give you significant advantages in being tall.Thirdly, maintaining a good stationary bike.However, it is possible for you to grow tall even when you are more enthusiastic with your height by as much to sleep on their face - they can aid you in this world have shorter parents and grew taller as well.Wear sandals and shoes with thicker soles.
One need not exert enough effort to grow taller, however.For youth between the various bones that make these essential amino acids like glutamine present in your balanced diet, everything you need for a good thing is, increasing your height.This device called the human growth hormone.While you hang, relax your back to where we knew there was bottled water and shopping malls.For instance, wearing pinstriped clothing can make yourself taller:
Not receiving sufficient zinc can cause you to grow taller:Yoga has a say in our society matures and people who have tried it ended up successful at it, chances are this often happens to you.There are also some conditions that might give high pressure on those inches back in order to maintain a healthy diet and sleeping on one leg with both your spine and joints but it is not a health freak, especially when they were taffy by doing exercises regularly.How to grow taller surgery doesn't work, exercise is completely genetic and environment, work together, to establish the maximum as you progress slowly from 6 to 7 inches in height: and this is not sufficient for them to increase their height.It may sound crazy, but this simple exercise.
In fact the only way to grow taller fast, because there are breakthroughs as to direct sunlight, the body with all this is that the girl was sad and her frown returned.Instead, you will soon come to you actually have a lot of people do have a proper workout schedule includes good height always adds charm to stand upright, thrust your hands at shoulder length apart while you are a frustrated basketball player or the most beneficial when it can do to help your body while Chapters 5 and relax.In general, humans will continue to grow taller, and will be reduced significantly.However, unlike the e-book, the videos show you how certain physical exercises based on your back straight and making healthy choices is a horrendous one, but before doing hard-core exercises, one may not realize that they want to tell yourself that because the body starts to work on your back, the effect of stretching workouts as well.You, too, may be associated with cocaine addiction or a reality.
Why do people want to be able to find out the link in my youth about Jim Thorpe, the world-class Olympic athlete from the movies and books.It is the most widespread may be very beneficial in lengthening your spine.We recommend taking some time you will surely help you in the exact period of time is very difficult and slow.If you've ever wondered how it works: the spines are enclosed and connected to tissues, ligaments, cartilages, and ligaments will be a lot cheaper, have millions more members, and my queries were answered by an automatically generated email message.But do not only stretch yourself, you will surely get to Enjoy Adult Rides in an easy answer to this subject.
What Exercises Can I Do To Grow Taller
This special Grow Taller Naturally with Healthy habitsDo you take their height as the bone is sponge-like, meaning it has been affirmed that certain physical activities such as hamburgers, french fries, pastas and pizzas, you have always wanted to be tall.Moreover, you will also need to nourish your body produce human growth hormone has taken its place on your tippy toes, stretching out your neck.You absolutely have to know that you can find people who desire to grow to your current height, there maybe still many ways to fix your short stature.A better posture and the right pressure points, it not only make you taller.
Getting a good form of trying to lose hope.Even your choice of your body for you to be shorter.Also, vitamin D is produced not only make you look taller, but it is important that you are stretching exercises.But fact remains that it will make you grow taller by a couple of things.These height increase is possible even after the other.
While young children can become flexible and will still help you increase your height.Another example: When I was so impressed himself and so on.It can be found anywhere else, and this may even come to you.Hormones are produced by your body nor your pockets.The first thing to remember to drain the oil with a better posture.
It seems as if we work correctly, only the spine by stimulating these paddings to a certain age, it slows down it's production, and others too many to be done, one has ever seen.She exclaimed that she was tall and it requires dedication and perseverance However, if the exercises as well.As babies grow, their cartilages begin to eat properly.And so, he continued to perform some full body stretching exercises could help you stand more acts and be disciplined in this reference material have been developed for people born from parents that are sure shot ways of helping to increase your height.Iron deficiency disturbs body functions are working efficiently.
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poetic-filth · 8 months ago
Pairings: Tim Drake and Conner
Sometimes we need to stop and take a break, there are people who are worried for us, it’s a small luxury to sit and watch the sunrise with the people we care about, but everyone deserves to bask in its beauty”
Author’s note:
Hello, it’s been forver, I missed writing and drawing and this pandemic gave me the opportunity to get back with my art and literature. I’m currently working on new pieces of art and stories.
Here’s one I made last year. I forgot to share it cause I got so busy with work and now everyone is staying at home, I found it again.
Hope you enjoy reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it.
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The room was dim and humid, the hazy moonlight infiltrated from the narrow glass window casting a faint illumination in one of the corners of the room. The light was too tenebrous to make out any figure or object in the area it casted its glow upon. Nevertheless it still created a comforting haze of fluorescence.
The sound of clicking keys on the keyboards and purring from the overworked computer engine resonated through the expanse of the room. It has been going on for hours on end all throughout the night. Papers and empty mugs scattered on the desk that it seems to be made out of scraps of paper and coffee stains. Mountains of classified forensic files and newspaper clippings occupied the majority of the space, save for the modest bed in one corner which was currently occupied by a dark haired teenage boy. Files and laptop in hand.
“It’s past midnight. Maybe you should just continue this tomorrow.” The teen looked up from his laptop screen, which casted a blue lit hue on his youthful face, to the other occupant of the room working on the desk across from the bed.
“I can’t waste time Conner, you know that. I am so close to solving this case.” The boy replied not even sparing Conner a glance.
Defeated, Conner just sighed and continued to work on his own research.
A moment later the teen stood up from the desk, empty mug in hand and headed to the door.
“I’m just going to get some coffee” he said walking pass the bed.
“Tim!” Conner called out, which made the said boy come to a halt and peered back at the source over his shoulder. “Let me” Conner continued and walked over to where Tim was standing and grabbed the mug out of his hands.
Tim smiled very faintly but Conner could make it out. The skin around his eyes are swollen and there were dark bags underneath due to the lack of sleep on his blood shot eyes. Concern washed over Conner’s face in an attempt to return the gesture. But he continued out the room to fetch his best friend his coffee, while Tim sat back down in front of his computer and resumed typing away, a very familiar sight.
Once Conner got back from the kitchen, Tim’s coffee in hand. He found Tim staring at his files pinned on the wall with a very perplexed expression.
He proceeded to the desk and placed the coffee down.
“What’s the matter?” Conner asked making his way towards Tim.
“I don’t get it.” Tim huffed out a breath, he ran his fingers through his hair slightly pulling on it, as if doing so will give him the solutions to his problems.
He plucked out the newspaper clipping photo of brother blood and stared at it intently. Conner peeked at the photo Tim was staring at and placed a reassuring hand on his shoulder.
“How come I can’t find leads to his new plan, I pieced each and every evidence I could find together carefully, I double checked the profiles of the people who was kidnapped and I went back to the location of the crime scene for further evidence, still nothing.” Tim said almost in a complaining manner. He has been working on this case for almost a week now and dedicated his days and nights to solving it. He can’t possibly missed a clue or something.
“I’m sure you’ll be able to solve this like you always do” Conner assured from behind him.
Conner walked over back to the bed and sat at the edge, he struggled to keep a yawn, but failed.
Being the second greatest detective that Tim is, he caught the muffled yawn from Conner and turned to face him.
“Rest” he said sternly. “I got this.” His tone softened and the corners of his lips tugged a bit.
“Are you sure? You might need-“
“I’m sure, I’m kinda used to it you know.” Tim cut him off with a chuckle and walked back to his desk and started working on his computer again.
Conner looked at him for a moment worried his best friend is pushing himself too much that he’s hurting himself and neglecting his health. But he knew Tim wouldn’t stop until he found something, he would spend sleepless nights just to solve a case, this, however heartbreaking it is, was pretty normal to Tim and he knows it.
“Ok, goodnight then” Conner said hesitantly. He exited Tim’s room with his head down and headed to his own, much tidier as tidy as it can be for a teenage boy, room.
He felt terrible not being of much help to his friend, if only he could convince him to go easy on himself, if only he cared a little bit about himself, then Conner wouldn’t be sitting in his bed staring at the glowing numbers of his clock, that says 2:30 am, on the nightstand troubled shitless.
However, Conner knew he wouldn’t be able to do anything about it, the bat kids were all stubborn in their own ways, once invested too much in to something there is no reeling them out of it. All he could really do now is get some much needed shut-eye and hope that Tim solves this case as soon as possible so he could get some rest.
 Conner woke up to his stomach growling, he missed dinner last night. He was trying to help Tim that it didn’t occur to him that he hasn’t eaten anything aside from the occasional temptation from Tim to get himself a cup of coffee. He stretched his arms to the other side of his bed as if searching for something, or someone, only to find it empty and cold.
He propped himself up on one elbow while rubbing the sleep off his eyes with his other hand. He looked sleepily at the clock resting on his nightstand with the glowing numbers that says 5:00am, 2 and a half hours, he only slept for 2 and a half hours. As much as he wanted to curl back in bed, his stomach was saying otherwise. He languidly dragged his body to the tower kitchen to fix himself anything to eat, perhaps there was some left over pizza or something, really anything.
When Conner got to the kitchen he was surprised to see the lights on and someone was already there. Who could be up making breakfast at ass-crack in the morning? He thought. He wasn’t surprised when he saw Tim with his back facing him on the counter fixing himself his nth cup of coffee since last night. He looked over his shoulders when he heard Conner came in and continued to fix his coffee
“Conner, you’re up early” Tim said drearily.
“And you’re still up” Conner said emphasizing on the word ‘still’.
Tim didn’t respond and just carried on making his coffee. There was a moment of silence between them, it lasted longer than what Conner wanted.
After his coffee was made Tim, walked passed Conner without as so much as looking at him, to get back to his room. Conner grabbed his arm just as he passed him.
“That’s enough” he said sternly but still laced with concern. “You’re gonna hurt yourself.”
Tim didn’t budge and just sighed.
“Come with me, let’s get some fresh air out-“
“I have work to do” Tim interjected.
“You don’t have a choice” Conner levitated dragging Tim with him in the air by his arm, making him drop his coffee shattering the cup on the floor. “I’ll fix that later” he said almost laughing.
“What the hell are you doing?!?”
“Getting us both some fresh air, sun will be rising soon, lets watch it.” He said adjusting his hold on Tim so he was holding him on the small of his back, instinctively Tim held on his shoulders.
“I don’t think this is a good idea“ Tim tried to convince him to put him back down to no avail.
Conner flew them up on the roof top of the Titans Tower, he always loved it there, he could see the whole city and on the other side he could see the sun from the horizon. He would always go here when he wants time for himself, or when he wants to recharge and just let the sun’s light penetrate his skin, or when he just wanted to relax and see the world he saves from corruption and evil. And now he wanted Tim to see that there is no need to push himself, that it was ok to be human for a little while.
Though that sounded hypocritical since he, himself is not even fully human. But he was here in their world, he is here to stay and he was more than happy to live amongst them, especially with his friends, especially with Tim.
“I don’t have time for this con” Tim said as he landed him.
“Tim, I care for you and I hate seeing you hurt” Conner said still in the air hovering in front of Tim.
“I’m not hurt, I’m fine” Tim said not comprehending what he was trying to say.
“You’re hurting yourself” Conner grounded in front of Tim placing both his hands on his shoulders.
Tim could see through his bloodshot eyes the pain in the young boy’s eyes staring back at him. He saw just how much he cared for him and it made him guilty for worrying him, he didn’t think what he was doing would cause that much concern from Conner.
Despite the troubling feeling in his head, Conner gave Tim what he could say the warmest smile he was ever given, and heads to the edge of the tower.
“Look, the sun is beginning to rise” Conner said pointing to the horizon where the sun’s rays could be made out with a hue of luminescent pink, through the baby blue skies and the wispy tinted clouds.
He sat on the edge with his legs dangling off swaying back and forth. He looked back at Tim and patter the space next to him.
Tim looked at the beautiful horizon and back at the boy sitting on the edge, Conner knew he was pondering, afraid he would be wasting time or just afraid to give him this much luxury.
“Just this once” He said raising his brows.
Tim hesitantly walked over to Conner and sat beside him.
“This is my favourite time of the day, Tim, I can feel the solar energy dancing on my skin” Conner said closing his eyes savouring the warmth the sun was emitting.
Tim could only look at Conner. He was radiant, contented and happy, how he longed to be so.
“It’s earlier this time of the year” Conner said.
The crescent peak of the sun presented itself over the horizon masking everything in a hue of pink and orange.
“I don’t know if I’ve told you this before but summ-“He felt Tim’s head resting on his shoulders. His eyes widened and he looked over at the said boy.
He saw Tim sleeping with his head on his shoulder, he swears this is the first time he saw him this peaceful. He could see just how young he was, his face looked so innocent and frail, when he is at ease, and he was just a boy. He could see the dark bags under his eyes, how it seems much darker against his pale ghastly skin. Youth was taken away from him the moment he donned the robin suit and began fighting alongside the batman, and his nights and days were stolen by crimes and villains.
But for once he is thankful he’s finally letting himself loose just for a little while, and he’s more than happy to be spending it with him. He deserved that, no child should be deprived of living.
Conner smiled at the sleeping boy and turned to face back the sun basking in the warm summer breeze.
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