mandocrasis · 2 months ago
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Part 5
Pairing: Max Phillips x Named F!Reader/OFC (Prudence Walker)
Rating/Word Count: M (18+) / 4.9k
Warnings: an eerie vibe, ghosts, and I think that's it
Summary: Let's hunt a ghost
A/N: Hellooo, I'm baaack! There will be a longer A/N at the end but for now a big shoutout to @honestly-shite for beta reading for me!!
Previous ++ Series Masterlist ++ Next
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The New England manor is much like you expect. It’s clearly old, slightly secluded from the nearby town. Your client, Molly, mentioned on the phone that she purchased it with the intention of fixing it up and turning it into a bed and breakfast. You hope she has the drive for it because the place looks like it hasn’t been inhabited in years.
Piles of fallen leaves litter the yard, the grass is well past overgrown, and shrubs threaten to start blocking out the building’s dirt streaked windows. Paint is peeling off from the siding, revealing the weather-worn boards below. The steps leading to the front door look semi-precarious and you can only hope that the inside looks a little better than the outside. With the oncoming winter weather it seems as though Molly decided to leave the yard work and house’s facade until the spring. It's all well past worn, but seems like it should hold up for another season.
“This place is a dump.”
You look over to where Max is sitting in the passenger seat. He’s leaning forward, squinting at the manor with a critical look. The position rewards you with a perfect view of his profile, the backlight from the late afternoon sun casting a slight and undeserved halo around him. You cover up your staring with an eye roll and a scoff. “It’s old and she’s fixing it up. Were you expecting something five star?”
You roll to a stop in the drive to the right of the stairs leading to the double front doors. Molly’s car isn’t anywhere to be seen, but you figure if you need to move your car to somewhere else on the property she’ll let you know.
Cutting the engine, you twist in the bench seat to face Max. “I know I might be asking a lot here, but can you actually manage to not be an asshole around this woman?”
Max’s brow scrunches, those two little lines on his face deepening between them. “What’s that supposed to mean?”
“It means that this isn’t some game to me, it’s my job, and I’d like to continue doing it. I don’t need you and your stupid nicknames causing someone to deter others from calling me with a possible case.”
“I know how to be professional, sweet cheeks," Max smiles.
You don’t believe him in the slightest. Something about your comment seems to have gotten under his skin though and you hope that’s enough. Molly sounded extremely kind on the phone and the last thing you need is for Max to go and call her something like kitten. You considered pushing him out of the car when he used that one on you around two hours ago.
You pull your hair back into a half-ponytail, using the rearview mirror to make sure there are no awkward bumps or loose hairs sticking out at weird angles. Stepping out of the heated cabin of the Suburban, you desperately hope Molly has at least gotten the heat to work in the old house. Despite all your layers, the deep autumn chill cuts through and a night or two spent in near freezing temperatures sounds like your personal hell.
Dufflebag slung over your shoulder, you march up to the house with Max following close behind. The doors look heavy, a stained dark oak with brass handles and knockers that look to be the real deal. Pulling the patinated metal ring, you take a deep breath and knock three times. Here goes nothing.
It’s quiet while you wait for the door to be answered. There isn’t so much as the whistle of the wind or the chirp of a bird and you almost wish Max would run his mouth just to fill the silence. Unnerved, you reach for the door knocker again, half looking to confirm you haven’t suddenly lost your hearing.
Your fingertips brush the cold metal again and the door swings open. A woman stands on the other side, her dark brown hair pulled up in a scrunchie, wearing light wash overalls and a bright purple sweatshirt underneath. She looks like she just walked out of a Sears ad from the nineties and greets you with a big smile. With how warm she was on the phone, it isn’t difficult to assume this is Molly.
"Hello. Please, come in," she says, stepping back from the doorway. Eager to get out of the chill, you step into the old manor.
The inside of the place doesn’t look much better than the exterior. The entire foyer is in a state of half repair, as though all the projects were stopped midway through. Molly hadn’t been joking over the phone when she said the contractors all up and left. Light barely breaks through the filthy windows, stretching out the shadows of the space.
You push through your mild shock and smile back at Molly. No reason to blame her for not having the help she clearly needs. "Thank you. It’s nice to meet you.”
"You as well. Thank you for coming, really I almost feel silly for calling." Normally that would bother you, but the affable way Molly says it removes any of your typical annoyance. She seems genuine and possibly a little embarrassed that it has come to this.
"No need. This is what I do."
"And your friend?" Molly asks, gesturing to Max who’s standing just behind you, still looking around the space. He’s been so uncharacteristically quiet since walking inside that you nearly forgot he was there.
"Oh, right. This is my… business associate, Max." You desperately hope she doesn’t get the wrong idea about your relationship with him. You don’t want to go through sorting that out.
Max smiles, friendlier than you’ve ever seen discounting that first night in the bar. “Nice to meet you, ma’am. You really have your work cut out for you here.” There’s no underlying sarcasm in his voice. He’s being genuine. It freaks you out more than the potentially haunted mansion you’re standing in.
Molly rests her hands on her hips, looking around the space. “I hate to admit I may have bitten off more than I can chew. It would be nice if I could get at least someone in here to help me, but then I guess that’s why the two of you are here.”
“Hopefully we can get you some answers and let you get back to it soon.”
Molly looks relieved by the prospect that whatever’s happening could be explained sooner rather than later. “Right! Well, I guess I better show you around. I know we spoke a little on the phone, Prudence, but it would probably help to see what I was talking about?”
You smile, nodding at her. “Please, lead the way.”
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Molly takes you on a tour of the hot spots, offering little bits about the manor’s history along the way. The home was originally built in the 1880’s, passing through a few family’s hands before ending up in Molly’s. The last time anyone lived in the home was the 1970’s, sitting vacant, waiting for someone new to come along and take ownership.
There’s a lot of potential in the building. Many of the features still remain from when it was originally built from the multiple functional fireplaces throughout to the sculptured reliefs on the walls. Your favorite are the stained glass windows, the intricate work remaining intact even after all these years. They’re in equally desperate need of cleaning as the other windows in the home but their beauty still shines through.
Distracted by one of the more ornate windows, you miss something Molly says, causing Max to nudge you with his elbow. Molly doesn’t seem to mind, offering you a small smile. “It’s gorgeous work isn’t it? I’m hoping I might be able to figure out who made them.”
“They’re beautiful. I can’t imagine what they’ll look like cleaned.”
Molly gives you an odd look, but just as quickly presses on. Max nudges you again as she turns around, nodding at the window you were just admiring. “That shade of yellow is ugly though, right?” He whispers and you ignore him, quickly moving to follow after Molly.
She shows you to a couple of rooms, explaining that there’s a bathroom down the hall for you to use. “I guess I’ll let you get to it. Just give a shout if you need me for anything."
"Thank you ma'am. We'll let you know," Max says, offering her a grin that you're stuck between admiring and wanting to slap off his face. There's something about it that doesn't quite fit, regardless of how handsome he looks.
As nice as Molly is, you're glad she doesn't want to stick around for your full investigation. Dealing with Max is already going to be enough of a handful without someone else hanging around. As she silently slips around the corner of the hallway, you turn to face Max, perturbed.
“What the hell was that?”
Max looks truly dumbfounded. “What? You told me to be professional.”
“Ma’am? Really?”
“Sorry, was that the wrong thing to say pumpkin?”
“No, it- oh my god forget it.” You’re not doing this right now. You have a ghost to find and you’re never going to manage that standing here and arguing with your unwelcome investigation partner.
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The rest of your afternoon is spent wandering around the home, cataloging anything and everything that seems to be of interest. Max is of no help, mindlessly following you and providing unhelpful commentary about the repair work that needs to be done.
You're thankful when Molly reappears, distracting Max temporarily as you poke around the den. You tune out their conversation, absorbed in looking for anything and everything that could tell you what's going on. This house has a lot of history and this ghost problem could be far more long standing than Molly thinks.
As annoying as Max is, you can't help but notice that he's raised some good points while looking around. The manor is in an extreme state of disrepair – more so than you expected it to be. Did the contractors barely start before bailing? You can’t even tell where in the house Molly has been working or living in the meantime, unless she truly doesn’t mind the squalor, blinded by what it all could become.
Tucked away in the corner of the room, something colorful catches your eye. Strewn on the ground are a handful of Pokémon cards alongside an old yo-yo and a flashlight. If you didn’t know any better, you’d say this was some little kid’s hideout and you shudder to think what would drive a child to hide out in this old building.
“Hey Molly,” you call over, interrupting her conversation with Max. “You aren’t aware of any kids running around here, are you?”
You’ve caught her off guard, a deeply confused look now set on her face. “I um-” she drifts off, searching for an answer to give you. You thought it would be a fairly simple yes or no question, but she looks troubled by it, like she’s looking for information she can’t quite reach.
“Molly?” Max asks, snapping her out of whatever brain fog your question sent her into.
“Sorry, what? I- no I don’t recall any children around here.”
Normally you’d push a little harder, try to gain some additional information, but Molly looks so addled you let it go. Maybe there's some history you're unaware of there. Whatever it is, it's not your business.
Molly leaves soon after, mumbling some excuse before drifting out of the room. You're more than happy to give her some space if she needs it.
"What was that all about?" Max asks, hardly waiting for her to be out of earshot.
You wait a beat before responding. "I don't know. Clearly there’s something going on there so let’s give her some space, okay? Most people don’t buy a dilapidated manor for fun.”
“Oh so you can see that this place is falling apart.”
You push past Max, heading towards another room in the manor. “I’m not blind, Max. Some of us just don’t feel the need to point out the obvious.”
The rest of the evening remains uneventful. You poke around the place, looking and listening for anything out of the ordinary. From what you can find there are no sigils, no strange items, absolutely nothing out of the ordinary. Of course with a possible ghost that doesn’t mean much – it simply means that you aren’t dealing with anything else. Still, it is nice to rule things out. The rest of your investigation waits until well after sundown.
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“We had to wait until the middle of the night to do this?” Max complains behind you, feet shuffling on the worn boards of the hallway.
You readjust the bag on your shoulder, careful not to jostle it too much for fear of breaking any of the equipment inside. “What do you care? You’d be awake anyway.”
“It’s a bit cliché, isn’t it honeybee?”
“Cliché for a reason, jackass. The veil between worlds is thinner at night, so if there’s a ghost around they should be easier to contact.”
Max offers a non-committal hum in response, as though he doesn’t even truly believe you. You ignore him, stepping into the room you decided to hold your main investigation in tonight.
The room is in a state of disuse and disrepair like the rest of the manor. Dust settles heavily over everything – some of the furniture covered in white sheets that would no doubt release a heavy cloud if you were to lift them up. The items that are uncovered are discolored by the layer of grime and cobwebs sticking to nooks in the furniture and remaining decor. It feels extremely stereotypical for a haunted house and if it weren't for your afternoon spent poking around the whole place you'd be convinced you were being punk'd.
You uncover a couple wooden chairs and a small table in the corner of the room, covering your nose with the collar of your sweater to avoid breathing in too much dust. You take the nicer of the two chairs, carefully setting your bag at your feet. Max is strolling around the room, hands shoved into his pockets.
“What are we supposed to do?” he asks. “Shout until something answers or moves?”
You roll your eyes, plunging your hand into your bag. “No. I have equipment that we’ll use to try and get the spirit to talk with us.”
Max laughs, endearing crinkles forming at the corners of his eyes. “What, like a ouija board?”
“Don’t laugh," you snap, looking back down at the maglite you're lightly unscrewing. "Those have their uses. We’re not using one tonight though. They’re too volatile if you don’t know the spirit you’re trying to connect with.”
Max throws himself into the chair opposite you. It's a small miracle it doesn't collapse for how feeble it looks. He's watching you intently, hands folded on the table. "Do you have one of those loud radio things?”
You're genuinely shocked he has knowledge of any ghost hunting equipment. Probably saw it on some ghost hunting TV show.
“A spirit box? I mean yeah, but we aren’t going to use it. They’re annoying and usually more trouble than they're worth. How are you going to know if it’s actually a ghost speaking to you or if you’re catching clips of late night radio talk shows?”
Max actually looks disappointed.
“Don’t worry, I have other fun toys you can play with.”
A wicked smile appears across his face, thick with gross implication. "Have you been holding out on me Prudence?"
"Not like that, you perv."
You busy yourself with pulling out some additional equipment you've found useful in past ghost hunts. An EMF meter, digital recorder, and your trusty DV tape recorder.
"Oh come on, you can't be serious. That thing is a relic."
"Yes and it records in film but plays back digitally,” you say, turning on the recorder and getting it set up properly.
"And why does that matter?"
You heave a heavy sigh, irritated that you're forced to explain ghost hunting 101 to a literal supernatural creature. "The paranormal, especially spirits, appear better on film. On digital they cause distortions, but it's never concrete enough. A couple glitches, a light orb or two maybe. Film doesn't distort in the same way digital recordings do. With this, I can record on film, but play back in digital, which is considerably easier when I'm looking through the footage later."
“Hm. Smart.” You can tell that he’s genuinely impressed, but the way he says it still feels like a slight – as though he hadn’t expected you to actually find a solution instead of muddling your way through with worse equipment. You try not to let his apparently low opinion bother you.
You finish setting everything up and check over the camera one more time before getting up and turning out the lights. Your eyes take a moment to adjust, but the small beam of the maglite gives you enough light to make your way back to your chair without bashing a toe or shin on anything. Max is looking around the room as though he expects something to pop out at him at any moment. It’s sweet and reminds you a bit of the first time Nana took you to a haunted house.
She was performing a seance with a couple other old contacts of hers, trying to connect with the spirit and allow them to cross over. You’d been waiting for the ghost to jump scare everyone and spent most of the night on edge until Nana finally told you to relax.
The seance went as everyone had hoped, the strength of the energy around the circle enough to connect and allow the spirit to pass on with the comfort that their final message would be shared and remembered. You never even saw them – a small flicker of the candle light and somehow you all could feel that they had gone. You don’t expect anything like that tonight. If you’re lucky, you’ll make any form of contact.
You turn on the digital recorder, placing it at the edge of the table and call out into the room. "Hello. My name is Prudence and this is Max. If anyone is in here with us we'd love to talk to you."
Max snorts, raising an eyebrow at you.
"What?" you snap at him.
Max is still stifling laughter, unable to look at you with a straight face. "You can't actually be serious, babe."
"Ghost hunting shows aren't all bullshit. We're starting a conversation. It's rude to not introduce yourself. Now say hi.” You gesture to the empty room, hoping that you’re channeling enough of Nana’s calm authority to make him actually listen.
To your surprise, he does. “Hello,” Max says. It’s dry and lacking any emotion, but it’s something.
Satisfied, you continue to talk into the empty room. This is always the part you find nerve-wracking. Uncertain if you’ve made the right call about what room to be in, unsure if you’ll be able to make contact with anyone. The uncertainty gives Max’s laughter some credence. There is a chance all of this could be for nothing and you’re simply talking to air. You desperately hope he isn’t right.
“If you’re here with us I’d like to ask you some questions. I have a couple objects here that will help you talk with us.”
You pause, hoping for some kind of sign. Anything to let you know that you and Max aren’t alone. The silence lingers. Minutes pass. Patience has never really been a virtue of yours.
“We don’t mean you any harm. You can make yourself known however you’d like.”
Again you wait. You know you can’t rush spirits. They work on their own time, revealing themselves when and if they see fit. It’s for that very reason they're one of your least favorite anomalies to investigate, but they’re also the steadiest work you can find. A blessing and a curse.
Another ten minutes creep past without a sign. You’re resisting the urge to check over your equipment, unwilling to let Max see how fidgety you’re starting to get. Instead you rub circles into the valley of your hand between your thumb and forefinger in a vain attempt to relieve some of your anxiety.
Max looks completely calm across the table, bored and slouched with his arms crossed firmly over his chest. The long sleeve shirt he chose to wear does nothing to hide his muscles underneath, even in the low lighting. The fabric pulls in a way that leaves you torn between staring and telling him to wear clothes that actually fits instead of being one size too small. Once again, you’re thankful for his inability to read minds, or you’re sure yours would be coming across loud and clear to him with how quiet the room is otherwise. You don’t need him knowing you think anything about his physique.
“Hello?” Max suddenly calls out into the room, boredom easily giving way to frustration. The abruptness of his voice startles you. You only now realize how incredibly silent the room has been, reminding you of the silence you heard before the front door opened earlier today.
"Anyone there?" Max calls into the room again.
The silence stretches on for another long beat. You're convinced nothing will change. Why should it? Nothing substantial has changed in the room. All that happened is a cranky, impatient vampire gave a little shout.
Then you hear it.
Two distinct knocks coming from the corner of the room. Not pipe creaking, house settling noises, but two clear as day knocks. You and Max look at each other with wide eyes.
“Hello? If someone is there, could you do that again?" you ask.
Two more distinct knocks echo from the same corner. You quickly double check the camera and digital recorder, making sure both are in working order. The EMF meter hasn't changed at all, but the spirit may not be close enough to register.
“If you’d like, I have a couple things you can use to speak with us. This is an EMF meter, you can make the lights turn on and off, or there's a flashlight you can play with.”
You wait with bated breath to see what they'll do next. Those knocks could be all that you get. Max actually looks interested in something for once rather than his usual passive boredom. You should have known that while books and research hold no interest for him, the prospect of actually interacting with the paranormal, beyond himself, would grab his attention.
The maglite rolls to the left on the tabletop you placed it on, the otherwise steady light beam flickering slightly. You’re about to ask if that was the spirit when it turns off completely. A moment later it sparks back to life, shining brightly before returning to what it's looked like for the past twenty-five minutes. Whoever is with you and Max in this room, they’re ready to talk.
The relief you feel is immense. There’s always some level of concern that nothing will pan out, essentially wasting your time as well as your clients. Normally you don’t feel quite as bad about the latter but you’d been hoping for something this time. Molly has been nothing but kind and it truly feels like she’s counting on you for answers. You might just be able to provide her with some.
You glance over at Max before turning your attention back towards the flashlight. Here goes nothing. “Can you turn the flashlight off and on again for me? So I know you’re there?”
The maglite follows the same pattern – off, bright, and back to normal. Max mutters something under his breath in clear disbelief and you can’t help feeling prideful that he’s awed on any level.
“Thank you. It’s nice to meet you.” You look at Max pointedly, prompting him to follow your example.
“Uh- Nice to meet you,” he says in the direction of the maglite. Good enough.
“Can I ask you some questions?” you ask.
The maglite doesn’t turn off this time. Instead the beam only flashes brightly once. Whoever this is, they’re very responsive – hardly a minute passing between each question and answer. You once worked a case where there was nearly a five minute wait between each reply.
“Brighter for yes and dimmer for no?” The beam flashes again in reply.
You shift in your seat, leaning forward and resting your elbows on your knees. “Do you live here?”
"Did,” Max says before the flashlight beam changes.
"Did you live here,” Max clarifies. “They're dead."
You cast a deeply annoyed look at Max. "Just because they're dead doesn't mean they don't live here anymore. You died and your annoying ass is still wandering around."
Max for once doesn’t have a response for you. This whole ghost hunt must be throwing him off his game.
"Sorry about him,” you say, turning your attention back to the maglite. It still hasn’t changed. “Do you live here?"
The beam flashes brightly for you again. You figured that would be the answer to that question, but the confirmation is still nice to have. Limited to yes or no questions, you have to think them through carefully, using the information Molly was able to give you.
“Have you been here a long time?” you ask.
The maglite sputters, going bright before plunging the room into near total darkness. You’re not sure what kind of an answer that is. Yes and no? Does the spirit not know? It’s possible. You know through Nana and your own research that some ghosts have no concept or a warped concept of time in their limbo. Not exactly helpful here.
"Are you the reason the construction crew isn’t here anymore?” you ask next.
The flashlight sputters for a moment before flashing bright once again.
“Did you chase them away on purpose?”
This time the light beam goes dark in reply. No. Not what you expected. From what Molly had said it sounded like the construction crews all cleared out the moment this ghost made itself known. You’d expected it to be a somewhat purposeful outcome on the ghost’s part.
“What do you want?” Max asks, suddenly contributing to your little Q and A. The flashlight doesn’t change.
“Yes or no questions only, Einstein,” you remind him. Max scowls at you, but amends his question.
“Do you know Molly?” he asks this time. You’re not really sure what insights that question will offer. You’re surprised when the light flashes yes.
“Did you know her when you were alive?” you ask, following the clear path that Max’s question laid out. You find yourself even more shocked when the answer is once again, yes.
Max looks as surprised as you feel, eyebrows arching upwards. This isn’t a turn you expected this conversation to take. Molly hadn’t mentioned any recent deaths in her life or on the property. You’re more than a little puzzled, unsure of what to ask next. The maglite rolls slightly again, the spirit lying in wait to provide another answer.
You almost ask another broad question if only to keep whoever this is engaged, when you suddenly remember something from earlier in the day. Molly’s strange reaction to your question about children. You take a deep breath, nervous to ask the question you now can’t avoid.
“Are you a child?”
The flashlight burns bright. A chill runs through you, this time not the fault of the drafty manor. If you’re honest with yourself, you expected this spirit to be some past owner upset with the changes that Molly was making. This possibility hadn’t even been on your radar.
Did Molly know somehow? Could she have known that this ghost is so young – who this is. You imagine it would be difficult for her to forget the death of a child that she knew in any capacity. Perhaps that’s the crux of it all though. Denial can be a powerful thing. It may not be a possibility she’s willing to consider.
You’re about to ask another question, trying to figure out what the relationship may have been or what happened to this child, when the beam flickers off and on twice before returning to normal. No question prompted the phenomena, leading you to ask a final question.
“Are you still here with us?”
Minutes tick past. There’s no response. The beam of light holds steady, not so much as a minute flicker darker or brighter. The spirit’s last message comes across loud and clear. Good-bye.
“Thank you for talking to us,” you say to the room, despite knowing your young visitor has likely disappeared. You’re not about to stray from the etiquette Nana taught you to use with the other side.
Max is quick to follow up your gratitude with his own, catching onto how this works. He also doesn’t hesitate to turn to you only a second later. “What the fuck, Prue?” If you aren’t mistaken, there’s genuine alarm in his voice.
You flick off the digital recorder and the camera, standing to collect your maglite and EMF meter. “I really wish I knew.”
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Reblogs and comments are greatly appreciated 💕
A/N: Hi there! Sorry for the months break between chapters, life got busy, writing got hard, and yadda yadda. But I'm back to it! Writing is still slow going for me right now, so I can't promise regular updates, but I'm hoping to avoid anymore months long breaks 😅
I want to give a huge shout out to everyone who has continued to give me love for this fic over the unintentional break because I don't know what I would have done without you all supporting me. Truly, it means the absolute world to know that you all still care about my fic💕 I also want to give a shout out to my bf, who won't see this note, but who helped me outline the entirety of Bonded one night and listened to all my ideas about these characters he knew nothing about.
I love you all, I'm very excited to be writing more Bonded, and I hope to see you all with another chapter again soon!!
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profoundbondfanfic · 4 months ago
It's a Small World (aka the Worst Ride at Disneyland)
It’s a Small World (aka the Worst Ride at Disneyland) by ireadhpinenochian Rating: Mature Word Count: 45k
Dean's life didn't start out great. With his mom dying and his father taking him and Sam on wild goose chase after wilder goose chase to track down her killer until Sam couldn't take it anymore and ran off, it pretty much sucked. But now he has Cas. And Cas is great--perfect, even--definitely the best thing that's ever happened to him, even if he isn't quite human. He's been living so long in domestic bliss that he completely forgot to be worried about waiting for the other shoe to drop. Which is, of course, when his giant of a brother strolls back into his life sending Dean into a panic that he and Cas will have to uproot their perfect apple pie life if Sam finds out Cas' big secret.
This story has so much to offer!
It’s got many lovely moments, many tense ones, and basically everything in between. The story has some heavy spots (which leave you with the strong urge to pull Dean into your arms to never let go while simultaneously wishing you could punch his father right in the face), so please mind the tags, but overall this fic is about family and what that really means.
What especially sticks out to me in this story is Dean and Castiel’s relationship. There is all the drama going on around them, but they stay strong and are just there for each other. They’re overall this old married couple we just always want them to see as: they bicker, they tease, they argue and they’re so stupidly sweet and soft with one another it makes your heart melt!
No matter what, nothing is able to get between them - neither clueless brothers nor obsessive fathers - and it’s actually one of my favorite depictions of their unique relationship out there 💗
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westwenteastandbackagain · 7 months ago
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hrsrabbitcenter · 5 months ago
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(Southern California) Fizz and Duncan are looking for a new home! Could it be with you? Fizz (black) was born on 2/5/21 and Duncan (gray and white) was born on 2/13/21. Both boys are neutered and bonded, which means they need to be adopted together. They’re litter trained and live indoors. Both are well maintained & love each other very much!
Reach out to Cindy at [email protected] for more information and if you can give these great little guys a good home. Fizz and Duncan are located in Murrieta, California.
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elysiumxflowers · 5 months ago
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When you lean down to try to put your socks on 👀
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whumper-boi · a year ago
Stay with me or I kill them all . Your choice !
(Prompt )
Caretaker tilted their head upward, trying to distance their neck from the shining blade trailing gently down their neck.
“Caretaker! Caretaker!”
“Where the hell are they?”
They could hear the screams and yells of their family, see them through the cameras they didn’t know existed, searching through every room in the house to try and find them.
“Aw, look how much they care about you Caretaker,” Whumper purred in their ear, hand still pressed over their mouth. “It’s a burning shame that you’re never going to see them again.”
Caretaker twisted their head, trying to turn away from the screen that felt like it was on repeat.
Whumper kept a firm grip on their face, holding them in place against them. “Especially your darling Whumpee, that’s definetly going to hurt.”
They tried to conceal their fear, the pain they felt at the thought of someone hurting Whumpee, but Whumper seemed to catch on.
“Which one should I go for first? Or should I make them choose? What do you think Caretaker?” They took their hand off Caretaker’s mouth, knife still leveled with the beating pulse of their neck.
“Don’t hurt them,” they gasped out, wishing their hands weren’t painfully attached to each other so they could do something. “Don’t fucking hurt them.”
Whumper tsked. “Language. That mouth of yours could be used in a much better fashion.” They laughed, then whispered in Caretaker’s ear: “How loudly do you think you could beg for me to stop?”
“You’re insane.”
“And you’re adorable.” Whumper watched the screen for a moment. “Well. I’m bored with them, no reason to keep them around, right?”
Caretaker’s heart dropped. “No! Leave them alone, please!” They added the last word for good measure, though it felt sour trying to reason with a monster.
“Hm, interesting. Fine, Caretaker, I’ll make you preposition. You, will come along and stay with me, or I’ll kill them all, one by one, and make you watch. It’s your choice.” Their voice remained equally peppy the whole time. “And remember, acting out can get someone hurt.”
The knife trailed down, from their neck to their collarbones, then to the ropes on their wrists. “I-“ they wanted to cry. “Fine. Just leave them out of it.”
They could almost hear the smirk in Whumper’s voice. “Good choice dear.”
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mjpens · 7 months ago
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Max and Prudence from @mandocrasis 's Bonded for BIRDIE'S BIRTHDAY!!!
Happy Birthday Birdie!!
I know this is a day early but maybe this is a way to let everyone know to shower you with love tomorrow because woweee do you deserve it. I love you so much - your writing is phenomenal, your grasp of Max has a hold on me and you are one of the kindest people on this lovely hellsite. I hope you have a great long birthday weekend my matchin' outfit buddy!!! <3 <3
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destielfanfic · a year ago
Destiel AU, vol.7 - Soulmates and Blind Dates
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Destiel AU, vol. 7 - Soulmates and Blind Dates. There are many ways how to your sweetheart, and Dean and Cas are ready for the challenge. See more soulmate AU fics on our #bonded tag, and fics about datin on the #courtship tag. 
All fics are recced for the first time on this blog, title link goes to AO3. [#] indicates that this is also a tag on our Tags Page, other comments are to explain plot points and tropes similarly to how we used to do it in our reviews. Due to tumblr shenanigans, we can’t mention certain terms on the post, please be sure to check author’s tags on AO3 as well.
Thank you, Elena, for letting us to use your wonderful art!  Link to artist’s tumblr: @purgatory-jar !!! <3  Link to original art post.
I. They are soulmates. Or are they? 
By Any Other Name by everandanon [T, 6,800 word count] #college au, #pining!dean, #pining!cas
Dean's never shown the name on his wrist to anyone, insisting he wants nothing to do with his soulmate - but when Sam gets a glimpse and tracks down the man who is, Cas must accept, once and for all, that he and Dean simply aren't meant to be.
Meet Cute by GatesKeeper [M, 10,500 word count] #long distance, #friends to lovers
In a world where the first words your soulmate will say to you get inscribed on your wrist at 16, knowing if you've met "the one" should be easy. But when is Dean Winchester's life ever that? Because the thing is, it's the first words they say to you face-to-face that count--not over text message or video chat or any of the ways he's been communicating with Cas since they met online. The night before they are supposed to see each other in-person for the first time, his mind won't shut off--too busy retracing the four words on his skin over and over again that read, "What you got there?" It didn’t sound like something Cas would say—nor did the child-like scrawl it was written in look like he imagined Cas’s handwriting. But how could it possibly be anybody else?
Not the Fire but the Spark by goldenraeofsun [NC-17, 30,320 word count] #bonded, #tattoo, #pining!dean, #pining!cas,  #jimmy, #claire, #artist!dean, #!samother (saileen)
Dean refused to look up his soulmate. His parents ran into each other by chance. Karen stopped by Bobby’s garage after her car unexpectedly broke down. Sam got seated next to Eileen on a plane, and he spent two hours miming conversation before she admitted she read lips. Was it stupid for Dean to hold out for a story like that? Probably. But he doesn’t regret his decision - not until Castiel Novak wanders into his tattoo parlor, asking about a cover up for his soulmark.
(You Make Me Feel) Like I Am Whole Again by FriendofCarlotta [NC-17, 5,800 word count] past #!deanother, past #megstiel,
Dean's relationship with his soulmate was a complete failure. Going to group therapy was supposed to help him move on, but Dean hates every minute of it - until a blue-eyed, gravel-voiced newcomer joins the sessions. As Dean learns more about Cas and his own soulmate troubles, he realizes it just might be worth giving love another chance.
II. Blind Dates are hard.
Biological Imperatives (Or Not) by tiamatv [NC-17, 29,000 word count] #abo, #charlie, #matchmaking, #teacher!cas
If Charlie’s going to bribe, threaten, cajole, or otherwise guilt Dean into one date with this beta friend of hers, well, fine. He'll give the guy just one date, that's the deal. Then Dean can walk away and go back to being the badass beta he is: geeking a little, baking a lot, and not dating the Awkward Professor. He just wishes everyone else’s goddamned presentation hormones would stop interrupting. 
Dean Winchester and the Patron Saint of Blind Dates by goldenraeofsun [T, 18,000 word count] #bartender!cas, #matchmaking, #charlie, #!samruby, #pining!dean, #pining!cas
Dean Winchester's friends are a bunch of traitors. So he had a bad breakup two years ago and hasn't gotten back on the horse. Their intervention - a series of blind dates - can't be the solution. But if this'll get his friends to stop, Dean can choke down over-priced spaghetti, make forced conversation, and drink whatever random cocktail the blue-eyed weirdo bartender makes for him next. At least Cas has his back. One nod from Dean, and he'll swoop down from behind the bar and make excuses for Dean to bail. It would be a perfect system - except Dean can't stop trading knowing looks with Cas and focus on his damn dates instead.
III. Meet Cute stories with a twist
Profound meetings series by duckyboos [T/M, 16,200 word count, 13 stand alone oneshots so far]
No matter the universe, these two idiots always find each other.
If you enjoyed the fic, please drop by the archive (AO3) and let the author know with your comments and/or kudos! And if you found our recs useful, let us know by Liking and/or Reblogging our posts!
Don’t miss the rest of Destiel AU rec lists! 
Or, maybe after all that AU cuteness, it’s time to check out Destiel Canon rec lists?
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ukdamo · 2 months ago
Aeschylus -  God can’t be dodged
O Zeus, whoe'er Thou be, If that name please thee well, By that I call on Thee; For weighing all things else I fail to tell Of any name but Zeus; If once for all I seek Of all my haunting, troubled thoughts a truce, That name I still must speak.
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harmoniouslyharmonic · 2 months ago
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dangerouslyclassyhottub · 3 months ago
Chapters: 5/? Fandom: The Transformers (IDW Generation One), Transformers - All Media Types Rating: Mature Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply Relationships: Megatron/Rodimus | Rodimus Prime Characters: Rodimus | Rodimus Prime, Megatron (Transformers), Ratchet (Transformers), Ultra Magnus, Drift | Deadlock, First Aid (Transformers), Perceptor (Transformers), Brainstorm (Transformers) Additional Tags: Transformers Spark Bonds, Sparkmate AU, ficlet turned fic, Mutual Pining, Hurt/Comfort, Angst, Other Additional Tags to Be Added, Rating May Change Summary:
Rodimus thought he was ignited without a sparkmate but one random check up leaves him with more questions than answers. He might not find what he's looking for when he goes asking Megatron what gives.
Chapter 5; When Your Friend Is Right And They Should Say It
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mandocrasis · a month ago
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Part 6
Pairing: Max Phillips x Named F!Reader/OFC (Prudence Walker)
Rating/Word Count: M (18+) / 5.1k
Warnings: more spooks, discussions of death, ghosts (please let me know if there is a tag I should add)
Summary: Everyone's favorite part of an investigation... research!
A/N: Another big thank you to @honestly-shite for beta reading most of this chapter for me, ily💕
Previous ++ Series Masterlist ++ Next
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The rooms that Molly has provided you to sleep in are shockingly clean despite the state of the rest of the manor. The sheets smell a bit musty, but you aren’t afraid of any spiders or mice crawling around in the sheets with you. Max is right next door doing lord knows what until you finally wake again. 
It’s hard to not wonder what he gets up to in the hours when everyone else is asleep. It’s a comfort to know that he can’t be sneaking around hurting anyone, but you’re not sure what else might preoccupy his time. From what you can tell, Max didn’t bring any sort of entertainment with him and you can’t hear noise of any kind through the relatively thin walls. Part of you wonders if you snuck into his room if you wouldn’t find him lying in bed, staring up at the ceiling into nothing.
You do your best to dismiss him from your thoughts, not wanting Max to be the last thing on your mind before you fall asleep. Despite your best efforts, you can’t help thinking about how your visitor tonight first spoke after Max reached out. You have no idea if it means anything, but it could be something to keep in mind. Being a vampire could give him some previously unexplored edge with the paranormal.
The next morning finds you relatively well rested. The bed is quite old, not exactly comfortable, but you stayed warm enough and didn’t have a truly fitful sleep. Max has already left his room. You sincerely hope he hasn’t done anything in that time to make Molly send you away, eager to play back everything you captured on the DV camera and audio recorder and get her some answers.
You find them in the kitchen together, sitting at the table and casually chatting. You note that while Max has changed into another henley a size too small, Molly appears to be wearing the same clothes as yesterday. You’re not judging her, but more so you’re surprised given the way she generally carries herself. You suppose it must be hard to do laundry consistently while working on a project such as this one though and let the thought lie. 
You nearly ask what’s for breakfast when you realize the kitchen is in a state of disrepair equal to the rest of the home. Since Molly is living here you expected the kitchen to at least be repaired for basic functionality, but that is very obviously not the case. You imagine she must be living off of fast food and simple items that require no actual cooking. Again, you aren’t judging her, simply surprised and a bit sympathetic. She must not have been here long before her crews bailed on her.
“Good morning, Prudence,” Molly greets cheerfully. “Max was just telling me how the two of you met.”
You stand next to Max, confused as to what he could possibly be telling her. The truth isn't exactly an option. “Was he now?”
“It’s so cute that you met at a conference. And Max giving you tips for your website, that’s precious.”
“He really was too generous,” you reply, placing a hand on Max’s shoulder, disguising it as a friendly touch while you dig your blunt fingernails into him. If it actually hurts him he gives nothing away, but it’s satisfying all the same. Molly squares you with one of those knowing looks, as though she understands that there is more going on between the two of you than what’s being said. If it weren’t considered impolite and a risk to your own life, you’d stake the bastard right now for giving her that impression.
“Has Max told you anything about our investigation last night?” you ask, eager to move the conversation anywhere else.
“No, he didn’t. Did you find anything?”
“We’re not quite sure who it was yet, but we did make contact with someone. I’ll be reviewing my tapes and doing some more research today to see what I can find out.”
Molly looks a bit surprised to know that you made contact with a spirit. It’s not an uncommon reaction. Most of the time when you’re called out somewhere people are hoping that you will prove them crazy for ever believing it could be something supernatural. Money happily spent for peace of mind. You don’t mind all that much either – of course you would rather find something, but the money makes up for the disappointment.
You're thankful Max keeps his mouth shut about the age of your mysterious spirit. The topic of children ghosts are touchy at the best of times – Molly's reaction from yesterday making you all the more hesitant to say anything before you have something concrete to share.
"Do you need anything from me?" Molly asks.
You shake your head politely. "I don't think so. If I do, I'll have Max come find you."
"I'll keep an ear out then."
You grab onto Max's arm, pulling him from his seat. "Come on, we're burning daylight." 
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Max is less than thrilled to be dragged along to review tapes. There are hours of footage to shift through. After your conversation with the spirit you had left the digital recorder and DV camera running in other areas that you thought would have activity, hoping to pick something else up. 
You've taken the equipment into a sunroom off the back of the manor, surprisingly warm despite the cool weather. There's a large tarp covering up one corner, providing enough shade for Max to sit in undisturbed by the irritation of the sun.
"Remind me why I couldn't stay and talk with Molly?" Max asks, his head propped lazily on his hand, only half looking at the small screen of the DV camera.
You pop an earbud out, pausing the audio recording you’re part way through. "Because I didn't need you telling her anymore lies about us. And you wanted to join me on this, remember? Going through recordings is part of the job."
"It's boring," Max whines. "There's nothing on this camera except for the light flickering on and off which we saw for ourselves. Seems like a waste of time, babe."
“Yeah well you can do this or you can go sit in the car. Take your pick.” You put your earbud back in before Max can make another smartass comment. There’s another hour and a half of recorded audio for you to get through, saving yours and Max’s conversation with the ghost until the end. You’ve always liked saving the most exciting parts for last, a reward for getting through the often boring slog of nothing on them.
It’s all too easy for your mind to wander while listening to the white noise on the recording. The sunroom, like the rest of the manor, is gorgeous despite its state of disrepair. You can see it becoming the perfect place for a nice brunch or lazing about in an afternoon, relaxing and taking in the view of the expansive lands around the building. You imagine it looks breathtaking in summer and the peak of autumn. Unfortunately now with the mostly brown landscape outdoors there isn’t much to see. 
Your journal is laid out before you, the well worn pages comfortable in your hands. It’s a welcome diversion while you listen to what seems like an endless amount of white noise and do your best not to stare at your unwanted partner. However, since you’re unable to actually read it while you listen for fear of missing something in the audio, it’s not that great a distraction.
Despite his proclaimed boredom, Max has zoned into the small DV camera screen. You could have uploaded the video to your laptop and given him a larger screen to watch on – which probably benefit you in the long run – but pettiness won out to give you the free entertainment of watching him struggle. His brow is furrowed, two small lines forming between them. His hair has grown out slightly from when you first met – an errant strand that's just starting to curl falling on his forehead. Your fingers itch to push it back into place.
You force your focus back towards the journal. The page it’s open to is filled with lists of herbs – their properties, uses, meanings alongside basic sketches of each. They don’t hold your attention for long. 
Max reaches his arm back, scratching mindlessly at his shoulder blade, lean muscles flexing with every movement. You’re screaming at whatever part of your brain is betraying you right now to remember the asshole vampire part of him before you start drooling.
The sharp line of his jaw, dotted with the start of stubble, starts to catch your attention when you hear something on the tape. It’s finally rolled into your conversation with the spirit last night, Max’s voice and yours occasionally breaking up the white noise now. That isn’t what makes you pause. You hear Max ask his first question, the unanswerable what do you want that you’re quick to chastise him for. Your voices aren’t the only two on the tape though.
You pause the recording, taking your earbuds out. “Max, can you listen to this?”
He pops his head up from the screen to look at you, eyes glazed from watching too much nothing. “I don’t know, is that something I’m allowed to do or should I go sit in the car?” he asks dryly. You immediately regret any thought you had about him in the past few minutes that was approaching kind.
“Stop being a baby and listen.” You offer an earbud to Max, moving your chair closer to him so that the cord will reach between the two of you. It’s impossible for you both to listen without your shoulders brushing. Neither of you say anything about it.
You rewind the recording and press play, watching his face for any reaction. It’s more than a bit disappointing when he doesn’t react at all. “Did you hear anything strange?” you ask.
“I don’t know, play it again.” Max looks disgruntled, like he thinks he heard something but can’t figure it out. It gives you a small inkling of hope. Audio recordings can be strange at times and it’s affirming to know your brain isn’t manufacturing things out of nothing. You play the audio back again.
“What do you want?” you hear Max on the tape ask. Then, right underneath your own voice reminding him that it’s yes or no questions only, a third voice. It’s faint and small, but there. Max’s rounded eyes only serve to confirm it for you.
I want my mom.
You still don’t know who the spirit is, but the matter of them being a child feels well settled. Your heart aches. Young, lost, and alone, looking for one of the world’s simplest and most powerful forms of comfort. Their mom.
“We have to tell Molly,” Max asserts, all but ripping his earbud out. You have no idea what is possessing him to think that could possibly be the next best course of action.
“No,” you tell him.
“No? What do you mean no? I think she has a right to know about the child ghost she has lingering around, Prudence.”
“We don’t tell her until we have all the facts,” you try to reason. “We don’t have any idea who they are, what they want, or if they have any connection to Molly. We can’t give her half the facts, that’s not what we’re being paid for.”
“So you tell her nothing in the meantime?”
“If she asks, I tell her I have something promising I’m looking into. That’s it.” It’s clear that if asked, that is also what Max should be saying to her. You’re not about to have him start undermining you at every turn. This is still your job. Not his.
Max is shaking his head at you, but he doesn’t say anything more. You ignore him completely, not wanting to take ethics lessons from a vampire that was plotting to kill mere weeks ago. You readjust your earbud and offer the other to him again. “Come on. There might be something more.”
He takes the earbud back with more force than necessary and you wind the recording back. You don’t want to miss a second of it now. The rest of it continues as you remember. Silence other than your own voices on the tape until suddenly it’s there again. This time unencumbered by your voice speaking over top of it, the message loud and clear.
Help us.
Moments later you ask if they’re still there with you. There’s no response on the audio recording, just as you remember there being no response through the flashlight. You grab the DV recorder away from Max, scrubbing through the footage until you get to the same spot. The voice matches up with the flashlight flickering on and off before becoming still and steady for the rest of the night. 
The good-bye message hadn’t been simple at all. The spirit wasn’t offering a friendly farewell, they were asking for help. Help us. Not me, us. Who else needs your help in the manor? Is there more than one spirit trapped? There’s been nothing else caught on the recordings, but that doesn’t mean someone else couldn’t be around. Some spirits are known to be more shy than others.
Your mind is racing. There are more pieces to put together here than you thought. It’s no wonder Molly couldn’t keep her construction crew and contractors around with all of this going on, because now you can’t shake the feeling that you’ve only been scratching at the surface. Opening your journal to a blank enough page, you begin to scribble notes, completely engrossed in your work and completely forgetting about Max until he clears his throat beside you. 
He’s shockingly quiet for once, words actually failing him. It hadn’t been hard to tell that interacting with a honest-to-god ghost last night had thrown him off slightly, but this development seems to have actually unnerved him into silence. You know it’s unfair of you, remembering your own rabbit quick heartbeat and sweaty palms the first time you came into contact with a spirit on your own, but the reaction does seem a bit absurd for a member of the living dead to have.
“What’s up?” you ask him, eager to get back to your frantic notes and figuring out your next steps. 
“That’s a kid asking for help,” he states, repeating the shared revelation you both made. He doesn’t add anything more to it.
“Mhmm,” you prompt, trying to get him to continue. You aren’t sure where he’s going with this. 
“That’s a kid.” 
“Yes, it is and we’re going to help them like they asked.”
“By not telling Molly.”
You set your pen down, rubbing at your temples. What he isn’t grasping about this situation you don’t understand. “We don’t know who this child is, Max. It seems like they have a connection to Molly but we don’t know that for certain and I don’t know about you, but bringing up the death of children isn’t the most pleasant topic for people.”
Your words seem to break through. For once he doesn’t fight you, nodding and picking the DV camera back up. It’s strange, Max being so quiet, but you’re not about to look a gift horse in the mouth. You scrub through the audio recording a few more times, thinking over every small detail you can remember. The next step for you is clear. You need to know more about this manor and the people who lived in it.
“I’m going to the library,” you announce, snapping your journal shut and standing up. Max looks like there is nothing he would like to do less than join you. He doesn’t even need to speak, a simple dramatic arch of his eyebrow and you know he’s not coming with. Not that you mind all that much, he probably wouldn’t even help if you dragged him along.
“I’ll be back. Don’t tell Molly anything while I’m gone,” you warn.
“Yeah, whatever you say peach.”
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The library is quaint, an older building with the history of the town built right into its bricks. You’ve always preferred libraries like these to the more modern ones. It feels like the exterior matches all the years of knowledge they hold inside. Hopefully this one holds the knowledge you’re looking for.
There’s a librarian at the front desk and rather than waste time searching for the information you need on your own, you go right up to them.
“Hi, I'm doing a research project on the Westlake Manor. I was wondering if you could point me in the right direction?"
You learned a while ago it's easier to call your work a research project and get on with it. Technically it isn't even a lie. The librarian is kind enough to direct you to the relevant local records and microfilm for your research, quickly leaving you to it. 
As you get the first roll of microfilm set up in the machine, a random local teenager catches sight of one of your open books and stops. Peering over he says, "You're looking into that old place? You'll want to look at the late 90's, that's when the crazy stuff happened there."
"What do you mean?" you ask, interest very much peaked. 
He chuckles, nodding towards the machine in front of you. "See for yourself. Shit's wild."
You can't help but crack a smile, amused by their blunt yet vague explanation. Despite their comment you decide to start your research back a few decades earlier, curious about when the home was last occupied. You never know if your child ghost might belong to them.
The last owners and true occupants of Westlake Manor were the Augustine's, owning the home from 1952 to 1979. Mr Augustine ran into financial trouble, forcing the family to sell the home in order to pay off debts that had been acquired. The information doesn't get much more specific than that, but it's enough to paint a picture.
The next owners of the home didn't actually live in it. They were never named and seem to have purchased it more so to acquire the manor as a financial asset rather than use it. It's clear that during that time is when it fell into a state of disrepair. With no staff kept on, the place was left to rot until you locate a bill of sale dated November 28th, 1996.
The home was sold to Molly Allen for nearly one million dollars, a name that stops you dead in your tracks. That can't be. Given your guess of Molly's age, she couldn't have been older than her early teens in 1996.
Frantically, you search for some plausible answer in the microfilm. Maybe Molly came from a wealthy family who purchased the home in her name and she's only now set her sights upon it. Perhaps in some crazy coincidence of names, one Molly Allen sold the home to another. You'd think Molly would have mentioned something interesting like that though.
You continue to sift through, looking for anything that will prove the chilling feeling running down your spine incorrect. Finally, you find an article from the local paper dated April 1997 and your blood runs cold.
It can't be, and yet the truth of the matter is staring you directly in the face. On the screen in large bold letters reads Tragedy at Westlake Manor. Directly beneath is a photo of Molly, the Molly you know and have been speaking with, smiling brightly on the front steps of the manor. Her one arm is wrapped around the shoulders of a little boy that looks very much like her.
You dive into the article, a pit gathering in your stomach. The article provides background on the manor, a brief overview of the manor’s history up to Molly taking ownership in 1996. The article is not a happy one. Not a piece on the restoration of a local landmark, but rather the report of a terrible construction accident that resulted in the death of Molly Allen and her eleven year old son, Christopher.
There had been some kind of major equipment failure, completely outside of the control of anyone on the site, bringing the machinery down on the Allens and an unnamed worker. The worker managed to walk away with his life despite some time spent in critical condition at the nearby hospital – Molly and Christopher were not nearly as lucky. Both were declared dead at the scene, bringing a swift end to the hope of the Westlake Manor restoration and transformation into a popular tourist location.
The mystery of who the spirit is becomes incredibly clear. Christopher. Molly’s confusion over and failure to mention any children makes sense. She’s stuck in a kind of loop, the traumatic accident leaving her unaware of her fate or the fate of her child. Your heart shatters at the thought. You wouldn’t wish this upon anyone, not even your worst enemies. It’s no wonder both of them are stuck and tethered to the manor. Molly doesn’t even know she’s dead and Christopher won’t leave without her.
Curious, you continue your research into the Westlake Manor. There’s a nagging feeling you can’t ignore, as though there’s still a piece of this puzzle that you’re missing. You sift through newspapers and records, eventually pulling out your laptop to do further research online, until you make a striking realization alongside two new discoveries. 
Years after the passing of the Allen’s, someone tried to sell the property. There was a hope that whoever bought it would continue the dream Molly once had and that her spirit now clings to. The renewed hope didn’t last for long. Only two weeks into showing the property and trying to drum up interest in investors there was a freak accident – the realtor falling through some rotten wood, the rough fall to the cellar below enough to kill her. No one has tried to sell or purchase the property since.
However, that doesn’t mean people have left the old place alone. From your understanding it’s still a landmark for the local area, a litany of ghost stories sticking to the manor. Enough ghost stories to draw out paranormal investigators amateur and professional alike, the results of each investigation hit and miss. One in particular grabs your attention though from only three years ago.
The post itself is covered in warnings to stay away from the manor, not going into any specific details, but enough for you to know two things – whoever this was, they had spoken with Molly and there had been another death at the manor. You start connecting the dots and make the most important discovery of all. You and Max need to get the fuck out of there.
You don't feel all that bad leaving the mess of microfilm and records behind. If you had the time you would have taken the proper care to put it away, thanking the librarian for their help, and gone on your merry way. You don't have that luxury at the moment.
You hastily throw on your jacket, grabbing your things and shoving them into your bag without regard. Running through a library is something that is also likely frowned upon, but you do it anyway, frantic to get back to your car.
As soon as you're on the main road, you search for your phone. It's at the bottom of the bag, your pencil poking your hand along the way. You hiss at the slight prick, shaking your hand out before renewing your frantic search. You know this is ridiculously stupid. Speeding, attention half on your phone, adrenaline pumping. Thankfully Max's name is easy to find.
The phone rings through. "Hello-"
You quickly interrupt. "Max, we need to go now." you say, only for his voice to cut through.
"-you've reached Max Phillips. Leave a message at the beep."
Fucking voicemail. You hang up and call again. He still doesn't answer. You're going to kill him. His phone is always nearby him and he chooses now of all times to be away from it? Or even worse, he's actually ignoring you, in which case you'll kill him twice. 
"Fuck, pick up you stupid parasite!" you shout, pounding the steering wheel. The phone continues to ring, going to voicemail and forcing you to dial again. 
It takes another three rings before Max finally picks up. "Hey babe, where’s the fire?"
"Max. Listen to me very carefully. Are you around Molly right now?" You're praying he says no. The less interaction you and Max can manage to have with her from here on out the better. 
"No." Small miracles do happen.
"Good. Whatever you do, avoid her. I need you to go to our rooms, pack up all our things, and meet me outside. I'll be there in ten."
"What? Why?"
You don't have time for this. You need to get to the manor, get your things, and get the fuck out. Explanations can come later.
"Would you just trust me?" you ask. There's a beat, a moment where you're completely unsure if Max will say yes or no. Your heart is pounding, waiting with bated breath for his answer. 
"Yeah, fine. I'll trust you Prudence. But I want an explanation."
"You'll get one."
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Max is standing outside the manor when you tear up the drive, looking equal parts annoyed and alarmed with your behavior. You’ve barely put the Suburban in park before you’re running out of it, door left wide open, grabbing your bag from Max and loading it into the car. 
“Do you have everything?” you ask Max, peeking inside your duffle to do a quick visual check. Everything seems to be in order.
“Yeah, what-”
“You’re sure? You left nothing behind?” you reaffirm, climbing back into the Suburban. 
“Yes, psycho. Now would you tell me what the fuck is going on?”
You glance back at the manor in your rearview, slowly fading from view. There’s a pit in your stomach, a terrible feeling for leaving so quickly but you know it’s for the best. You aren’t planning on abandoning Molly or Christopher either, a simple but effective plan already forming in your mind. You could never truly leave them behind and be able to live with yourself – Christopher’s voice on the audio recording still fresh in your mind. Help us.
Max has settled into the passenger seat, arms firmly crossed over his chest. “Explanation?” he presses.
The manor officially slips from view and you take a deep breath, trying to calm yourself from the panic before laying it all out for him. "Molly Allen is dead."
Max stares at you like you’ve grown a second head. "What are you talking about?"
You keep your eyes firmly on the road ahead, hands tight on the wheel. Trees lining the road whip past you, the sun beginning to dip below the horizon. "Her and her son Christopher died in a construction accident in 1997."
"Are you saying-?"
"Yes, that's exactly what I'm saying."
"That's fucking crazy." 
You finally caution a glance over at Max. His emotions are splattered across his face, disbelief and confusion knotting his eyebrows. Before he can start rambling about his confusion you try to explain things.
"She's caught in a loop. The trauma of the accident has caused her to forget dying, forget Christopher dying, everything. She still thinks it's 1997 and her construction crews abandoned her due to a ghost story."
Max takes a beat to process everything you just threw at him. Out of the corner of your eye you can see him doing the mental math, adding it all up.
"Why did we have to leave so quickly? I'm surprised you didn't want to stay and help or wake her up or whatever." 
You think that's a compliment. It's hard to tell with his tone of voice, but you'll take it as one.
"I think when Molly is broken from her loop and realizes what's happened she kills whoever broke her out of it," you explain.
"Molly?" Max laughs. "You did meet her, angel? She couldn't kill anyone, dead or alive."
"I met a spirit so traumatized by her and her son's death that she doesn't realize she died and has blocked out her son's existence to handle the pain. Her killing people for breaking that delusion wouldn't surprise me."
The reality of the situation with Molly sobers Max up quickly. "So now we're leaving the kid to fend for himself with a crazy ghost mom?"
Now that is just insulting. You might not be able to handle it yourself but you would never leave the two of them behind and stuck in pain. "No. I got the two of us out because the risk of breaking Molly out of the loop and having her kill one of us would kill both of us. Once we stop somewhere I'll call Nana and have her reach out to her contacts. With my information and the power of a few mediums and psychics they'll be able to put Molly and Christopher to rest."
"How do you know Molly won't kill them?" Max asks.
Emotionally charged from your discovery and coming down from the panic of getting away from the manor, his question grates on you. "Because they're experienced and know how to handle a spirit like hers. Do you think we're all just running around not knowing what we're doing or something? I know you don't give a shit but some of us care about this and care about enough to do it properly. We can’t help her but there are others who can.”
Max throws his hands up, leaning back against the window. “Yeesh, no need to bite my head off, hellcat. I was only asking.”
You ignore Max in favor of figuring out where it is you’re actually headed. Taking off from the manor you didn’t pay much attention and the fuel gauge is starting to get low. You need gas, a safe place to call Nana, and somewhere you can actually think for all of five minutes. You turn on the radio to fill the silence of the car, letting it scan through the channels.
You finally find a gas station after twenty minutes of driving pass by. Pulling up to the pump, Max opens his door to step out and hesitates. He turns back, his brown eyes looking soft for just a moment. "How did Molly get in contact with you?" he asks gently.
You turn the car off, one hand still gripping the wheel tightly and tell him the truth. “I have no idea.”
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westwenteastandbackagain · 6 months ago
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danjiisthmus · 4 months ago
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Rico and Paco
Animal portrait for a charity of some elder bonded birbs
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pretentiousdaisy · 6 months ago
There is no definition of eternal with you, that's why we are always bonded.
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whumper-boi · a year ago
Caretaker looked up at the cloudy sky, eyes narrowed. “Rain again? Man come on, it’s been like that for a week.”
The large black storm clouds had crowded the overcast, leaving what was supposed to be a warm July evening, a moist, dark, hell. 
“What’d you expect man?” Character B muttered, trailing their eyes up. “I told you when you moved here this was the norm.”
They rolled their eyes. “It’s not like you’re known for being a truthful saint.”
“How the hell could I lie about the weather [Caretaker]? It takes one google search. Just saying.” They took a sip of their drink.
“Yeah well-“ Caretaker stopped as they noticed a flash in the sky. “What, should I have checked for shooting stars too?” It was partially a joke, as they were wondering how they would’ve been able to see a star in a night full of clouds.
B had their eyes in the sky, squinting. “That’s- that’s really weird. We don’t generally get shooting stars.” They looked at each other, noticing how the ‘star’ was getting closer, and closer, and heading directly for them.
“What the fuck?”
“Should I get the others [Caretaker]?”
Caretaker turned to B momentarily. “Er, maybe they can tell what-“ They stopped, stunned, as whatever it was that was hurdling towards them had suddenly vanished.
B looked just as bemused as they felt. “Crack. Is it crack? Am I on crack? You saw that too right?”
They could only nod, scanning the skies for the bright light. Nothing. “Well, let’s just go-“ Caretaker and B jumped simultaneously as something crashed into their yard, only ten feet in front of them.
Light emanated from the thing, slowly diming as whatever it was started to wind down. Caretaker and B looked at each other, almost doing a mental rock-paper-scissors on who was going to go check it out.
Caretaker exhaled, standing up straight. They made their way forward, slowly, to the smoking crater on the ground. With the only light coming from the porch where B was, it was challenging trying to see what exactly had crashed down.
As they came closer, they got lower, until they were at the very edge of the crater. They were about to ask B to bring a flashlight, when a thin hand shot out of the smoke, wrapping around their ankle.
Very quickly, Caretaker stiffled their scream. They almost felt frozen in place, not sure what to do about the hand wrapped around their ankle.
It wasn’t acting violently, Caretaker’s first notice. There was no dragging, scratching, pulling, it was just there, holding on.
“[Caretaker]?” B called. “Everything alright?”
Caretaker didn’t bother with a response. They were to busy analyzing the bruised and cut-up hand, which slowly turned into another hand, and then two wrists, handcuffed together.
They stood straight up, gently prying off the hand, and slowly making their way into the divot of land.
They heard B calling them, and footsteps approaching, but they continued on. B would be fine.
Upon reaching the bottom, they noticed a cluster of black feathers, some burnt, most dirty but intact. Then they realized: those feathers were attached to a pair of wings.
A pair of large black wings, held tightly together as if they were trying to cover something. Caretaker quickly put two and two together, realising that the hands and the wings probably belonged to the same person (thing?).
“Hello?” They called quietly, trying to gauge a reaction from the pair of wings. They then reached out, slowly, and stroked their palm against the feathers of one of them.
The thing shot up, wings flapping wildly, pushing themself out of the direction of Caretaker. Or attempting to, at least.
Caretaker heard a loud whine as whatever it was collapsed against the ground again, trying to curl up into a fetal position.
“Hey,” they tried again, and this time, it whimpered and brought their wings closer. “I’m not gonna hurt you.” Whatever it was, it looked human, other then the thick black wings that trembled and shivered. Caretaker hoped they knew English.
“It’s okay,” they nearly whispered, getting on their knees and crawling towards it. “I’m not going to hurt you.”
The thing’s head turned to them, and Caretaker could see glowing orbs, which they quickly identified as its eyes. No words, just another whimper.
“It’s okay.” They were close now, holding out their hand for it. It’s eyes were studying them intently, though they were dilated and foggy. It’s hand made a slight movement when-
“Caretaker, what the hell are you doing?!” They jumped again. The creature curled up again, hiding its face.
Caretaker jumped up, following the direction of their friend’s voice. “Dude, shut up,” they whispered sharply, looking back at the direction of the unmoving creature.
“What was it? What’s there?”
“I don’t know, but shut the hell up before you scare them away!”
B’s eyes narrowed, and they looked like they wanted to say something, but they remained quiet as Caretaker made their way back.
The creature remained still, even as Caretaker got close enough to hear their labored breathing. “Don’t worry about them, that’s my friend. They won’t hurt you either, I promise.
Caretaker contemplated it for a moment, knowing how badly it ended last time, then reached out a hand, hesitating when their hand hovered above the creature’s hair.
They didn’t want to touch its wings again, but hoped that maybe it would accept something else. “I’m going to touch your head, if that’s okay.”
There was no reaction. No movement. No objection.
Gently placing their hand down, their fingers found their way into the dirty hair of the creature. It flinched, but made no effort to shake it off. Caretaker briefly wondered if it could.
After a pause, they moved their hand back and forth, watching the creature lean into their hand. “I’m not going to hurt you,” they repeated, the creature slowly starting to relax. 
Caretaker waited a few moment, before grabbing the creature and pulling it into their lap.
It whined- no, they whined, as Caretaker took in the bruised and bloodied skin, the ragged jumpsuit and layers of dirt that caked the poor thing.
They also noticed that their along with their arms, their legs were chained together, and there was a... mask? Covering their mouth and nose.
“You’re safe here, I’m not going to hurt you.” The mantra repeated until the winged creature, most likely overcome with exhaustion and pain, fell into an unconscious state.
“You’re gonna want to see this.”
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hellofmetal · 5 months ago
BONDED - Watch (While The World Burns) (OFFICIAL VIDEO)
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modestfox · a month ago
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Lastly, this is Bubo. Boo, Boobs, Boobie, Boo-Bird, Bologna, Brain, Brown cow, Baby Girl. I named her after the Great Horned Owl, Bubo Virginianus, and you better believe thats how her paperwork read. I adopted her from a shelter in Texas and she explored life for 7 years with me. I still cry. We were bonded. We saved each other. She felt like an extension of me. My soul’s lifesaving transfusion. I don’t have relationships as pure as these with people. I’m sure other animal lovers will agree, especially those who’ve experienced what I’m trying to describe. There’s a great book series by Philip Pullman called His Dark Materials that I read a child. I had gotten it from my mother who gave it as a gift but later threw the books out when she was told someone’s interpretation of it’s premise (specifically the accusations of atheism - is IS a fantasy novel). Similarly to those who banned Harry Potter because of the context of witchcraft, His Dark Materials suffered a similar witch hunt. My gosh sorry for the tangent… Anyway this author describes a parallel universe where humans’ souls are bonded to animorphous creatures called Daemons. As children, these creatures morph into different species to suit moods or situations relating to their human counterpart. As humans mature, the daemon settles into a consistent form. SPOILER ALERT: One of the main archs of the story is that daemons are being ‘severed’ from their humans. Souls are being split in two, the connection is killed, and the daemon dies. The human is left in permanent anguish, physically debilitating grief and suffering. It’s a terrible atrocity. There is no greater pain. That is the closest description I’ve encountered that could describe the way it felt when Bubo was dying. What killed her is a mystery that has increased my paranoia exponentially. I tried everything we could to save her. What overcame her submitted us both so quickly. No dollar amount could change the outcome, and when I realized that I did what any compassionate human would. I helped her go. I sang to her, I held her in my arms. She pawed my cheek. And she purred herself to sleep. My sweet girl. My soulmate. My everything. She was so special. She was present in every moment. We spoke a language only we knew. She loved ME, and I knew it. Now my grief is never ending. I have never felt a greater pain. I have never heard such thunderous silence. Her eyes were the same color as the trees of these mountains. The color I chose to paint our walls. My favorite color breaks my heart and helps me never ever forget her. For Bubo, my owl kitty, there are too many words for tumblr.
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harmoniouslyharmonic · a month ago
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My beautiful piggies ❤️
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dangerouslyclassyhottub · 5 months ago
Chapters: 4/? Fandom: The Transformers (IDW Generation One), Transformers - All Media Types Rating: Mature Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply Relationships: Megatron/Rodimus | Rodimus Prime Characters: Rodimus | Rodimus Prime, Megatron (Transformers), Ratchet (Transformers), Ultra Magnus, Drift | Deadlock, First Aid (Transformers), Perceptor (Transformers), Brainstorm (Transformers) Additional Tags: Transformers Spark Bonds, Sparkmate AU, ficlet turned fic, Mutual Pining, Hurt/Comfort, Angst, Other Additional Tags to Be Added, Rating May Change Summary:
Rodimus thought he was ignited without a sparkmate but one random check up leaves him with more questions than answers. He might not find what he's looking for when he goes asking Megatron what gives.
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