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bookboleynreads · a month ago
Release Blitz! Noble Neighbor (A Cocky Hero Club Novel) by Nicole Ann Nielson
Release Blitz! Noble Neighbor (A Cocky Hero Club Novel) by Nicole Ann Nielson
Title: Noble NeighborA Cocky Hero Club NovelAuthor: Nicole Ann NielsenGenre: Contemporary RomanceRelease Date: August 15, 2021 Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward are excited to bring you the Cocky Hero Club: original works from various authors inspired by Keeland and Ward’s New York Times bestselling Cocky Bastard series. BLURB Escaping the publicity following the murder of his wife, Oliver and his…
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sandythereadingcafe · 5 months ago
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KANSAS (Ruthless Kings MC : Atlantic City 2) by KL Savage at The Reading Cafe:
‘heart breaking, engaging, captivating’
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monarchies-history · 7 months ago
Don't Kiss the Bride
Don’t Kiss the Bride
Title: Don’t Kiss the Bride Author: Carian Cole Genre: Contemporary RomanceRelease Date: February 1, 2021 BLURB I guess you could say I was a damsel in distress, and he was my knight in shining armor.But more accurately, I was a girl with a lot of bad luck, and he was a guy with a lot of muscles and tattoos.Jude “Lucky” Lucketti wasn’t just a sexy, brooding construction worker. He was my own…
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cmnder · 8 days ago
what’s something funny to make pequod play in mgsv. i was gonna do carameldansen but the intro is so long . also i made the helicopter and mother base pink i had to do this. i feel this changes the effect of the song
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kcnnarys · 12 months ago
Ok FINE I’ll download chapters since you’re making me see so many posts about it 🙄. What’re the most entertaining books tho? I don’t care about brain damage I’m here for a good time not a long time
YESSSSSSSS LEGEND BEHAVIOUR!! ok queen here are my faves
1. bossman - play this IMMEDIATELY i am not asking
2. the once burned series - delicious delicious fucking delicious
3. 69 million things i hate about you - this book made me laugh so much i loved it
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ladyofdragonstone · a year ago
I love how you are kinda the book jonerys queen so many artist giving you nice things ♥️
OMG I would never claim such a title but thank you 💕 I just have a lot of wonderful, lovely, amazing friends that I definetly don’t annoy, threaten, or blackmail into making me book jonerys art ;))
But seriously I want to thank all my friends for being cool and nice and generous even though I’ve been on and off the fandom I seriously adore all my online friends so fricken much it would be hard to fanthom my life without them
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bookboleynreads · a month ago
Release Blitz! Creative Casanova (A Cocky Hero Club Novel) by K. Street
Release Blitz! Creative Casanova (A Cocky Hero Club Novel) by K. Street
Title: Creative CasanovaA Cocky Hero Club NovelAuthor: K. StreetGenre: Contemporary RomanceRelease Date: August 8, 2021 Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward are excited to bring you the Cocky Hero Club: original works from various authors inspired by Keeland and Ward’s New York Times bestselling Cocky Bastard series. BLURB “What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done?” When Ryder DeLuca posed that…
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sandythereadingcafe · 2 months ago
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Title: Whistler
Series: Ruthless Hellhounds #2
Author: K.L. Savage
Genre: Dark Romantic Suspense/Organized Crime
Cover Design: Lori Jackson
Photo: Wander Aguiar
Model: Andrew Biernat
Release Date: August 6, 2021
There's a whistle in the wind. And the sound doesn't just belong to me.
I became my own version of The Greatest of the Great when an injury stole my dream. I found a healthy alternative for my rage so I can still swing my bat. If someone has the unfortunate curse of being on the other end of my swing, they'll hear a whistle before they die. And it's how I'll kill any men who dares raise a fist to a woman. It's the vow I made a long time ago, but when I meet Charlie, I learn a vow won't ever be enough. The second I speak to her, I know. When I shake her hand, I feel her screams in my bones. The way she acts sets off every alarm inside me.
She's terrified. She flinches at every move and sound, every promise. And her husband is to blame. Physical, mental, and emotional abuse, yet she finds a way to love him.
That's when I learn it isn't about love for her, it's about survival. While she figures out a way to live, I figure out way to get her out of there. And I'm nearly too late. Loving her means defeating him. She has no idea what kind of man he truly is. He's got a secret. And I'm going to set it free.
Charlie is stronger than she realizes, but the moment she does... I hear it in the wind.
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tteokdoroki · 3 months ago
had it | k.bakugou.
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♡ pairing: katsuki bakugou x fem!reader.
♡ word count: 4.5K
♡ rating: everyone.
♡ genre: pro hero!au, married!au, fluff, comfort.
♡ summary: your pro hero husband is a show off, always has and always will be... but when his big ego gets in the way of you doing your job, you give him little piece of your mind..
♡ warning(s): please read ! mentions of violence, i gave reader a quirk?? bakugou with a daughter ok literally nothing. oh and angst if you squint.
♡ author’s note(s):  hi besties!! happy birthday to meee!! today i’m dropping a fic that’s been a long time coming, its a short and fluffy little piece with domestic baku bc i love him with babies n kids ok ok!! i hope you all have a lovely day <3
♡ masterlist | requests | kofi
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some say that working for a pro hero is an honour, no matter what the position is. some may work behind the scenes— creating gear and suits that support the pros protecting their cities or livelihoods. others are in charge of things like reports, PR and even physical health. everyone plays an important role in a hero's career. there’s never a dull moment working in a team supporting the pros, especially if that pro was dynamight.
the offices for katsuki bakugou’s hero agency were always buzzing; usually because the clean up team were rushing through with stacks upon stacks of receipts and paperwork from the damage done during bakugou’s patrols— other times it would be his secretaries gossiping about how good he looks in his winter costume because damn did that tight black shirt do his arms justice but usually it was just because of the PR team contacting media outlets with excuses for bakugou’s potty mouth.
working for the hot headed blonde was more laid back than it seemed however, the man himself was rarely ever in the office as the number two hero but out on missions instead, the pay was pretty decent and no one ever really faced his angry wrath nor his sailor like mouth unless they had royally fucked up on their job. katsuki bakugou was someone to admire, he never gave a damn about what people had to say about him— he only cared about getting the job done and maybe that’s why most people enjoyed their time under the dynamight agency.
particularly this time, right around noon.
the doors to the floor of the secretary offices fly open, crashing loudly against the walls and drawing the staff from their daily work. this office space is around ten floors up and somehow you’ve made it in record time today. “where is he?” your voice crawls through the entrance of the room, settling over the workers like a thick fog— commanding, menacing and soft all at the same time. newbies cower in their boots, confused at what’s going on and it’s safe to presume those who have been working here for years have yet to give them the run down. “don’t make me ask again.” you add, eyes darkening as you cast your gaze across the room.
an intern approaches you, visibly shaking with fear which makes you loosen your stance and raise an eyebrow toward them. “he-uh... he just went for his lunch break—“ the stutter, gulping under the stare of another highly ranked pro hero. “in— ma’am!” they stumble through their words, hiding behind the ungodly amount of paperwork that's been dumped into their hands. you make a mental note to chew bakugou out on the load his interns have been getting as well as your prior reasons for coming to his agency.
nonetheless you shake your head and drop the frown, a sweet smile quickly replacing the look that could put anyone six feet under if you really tried. with a tap to the side of your head, the visor to your hero costume rises above your eyes— allowing you to give the poor little intern a cheeky wink as thanks. “‘ppreciate it darling, have a good one!” you thank them properly with a ruffle to their hair, resuming your previous stance as you march the rest of the way through the office and kick open the door at the end of the room.
the intern sags, a whimper of relief passing from tired lips while they wipe at the sweat forming on their brow. they’d not even encountered their boss yet and they’d already come face to face with a top pro hero. “w-what’s her deal?”
a chuckle to the left of the poor kid startles them out of their mind; but they relax upon realising it’s just another one of dynamight’s secretaries— haruto, who’d apparently been working at the agency since it started up. “that’s nightsky, her quirk is lullaby, which allows her to control certain people if she hits the right note. she can also put them to sleep, if she really wants to,” the intern now perks up, remembering you from countless interviews on tv. you ranked pretty highly too, managing to the reach the top five this year along with others like shoto and deku. “she owns the hero agency across the street, herself and dynamight have been going at it ever since. it’s like they’re elderly lovers or somethin‘.”
“d-do you think they are? lovers like you say?” the intern asks a little too excitedly, touching at their messy hair from where you’d ruffled it. a crimson blush warms their cheeks, the idea of two pros playing enemies to the public eye but being lovers in secret seemed like something right out of a romance novel. how romantic.
haruto only chuckles at the newbie, standing to ruffle their hair as well before heading over to the coffee stand to fix himself a cup. “beats me,” he mumbles cheerily as he walks away, arms crossed behind his head. “but with the way yn bursts in here at the same time everyday to scold bakugou, and leaves with a huge smile on her face— i wouldn’t put it past them. they probably have a whole life together.” he taps his nose once as if he’s given away too much information, turning away without a word.
the intern hums, seemingly happy with their superior’s answer and easily heads back to work from there.
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katsuki bakugou was bored out of his mind.
being a successful pro hero was all he’d ever wanted— being the number two pro hero just came with that. bakugou wanted to get to the top and show everyone he was the best of the best and with him being blessed with a powerful quirk there was no way he couldn’t be where he was today. yet, now that he’d finally achieved his dream all he wanted was a fucking break. the blonde stares down at his microwaveable bowl of home cooked stew, a frown cutting deep into his cheeks. it was his lunch break for crying out loud, but instead of scarfing down the delicious meal before him, the hero was forced to watch it cool as some dumb fuck reporter asked him questions over the phone.
the telephone interview ( or a waste of his fucking time, as katsuki had called it ) , had been set up by his PR team right after he’d taken down a couple low level villains downtown earlier this morning. katsuki had called it nothing but apparently the whole world and their mother had been on his ass, watching as he took the criminals down with ease and raving about how glorious dynamight was during that fight. the reporter drones on about said event, asking the same old questions and it takes everything within the hot headed pro not to blow a casket— he’d been promised a few extra days off from his manager if he could finish the interview without blowing something up and only god knew how much katsuki needed a break from dumb paps and some overly obsessive fans.
‘so, final question, how does it feel to be the number two?’
bakugou grunts, buying himself time to formulate an answer. what he really wants to do is kindly tell the reporter to fuck off and ask more original questions; but with the prize of a longer weekend hanging in the balance he bites his tongue for the sake of freedom. “well i—“
“katsuki bakugou.” your voice cuts through his sentence before he can finish, vermillion eyes land on your hero costume clad form as you burst into his office. a lazy smirk now decorates the hero’s lips, brow quirked with piqued interest. “i have a bone to pick with you, you motherfucker.”
the reporter on the other end falls silent as katsuki watches you, leaning back in his plush leather chair. you look slightly disheveled, costume torn in a few places, scrapes littering your skin as you pant heavily from exertion— chest rising and falling with every breath, it seems ragged and bakugou makes a mental note to remind you to get your ribs checked out later. “you’re late, shitty woman.” the number two sits up a little straighter as you enter the room, leaning up to look at you while you slam your hands down on the smooth marble desk— the force rattling the items he has neatly placed on it.
‘uh-? mister...dynamight-? sir?’
your eyes sweep the room while the pro before you deals with the reporter, mentioning to her that they’ll have to continue their call later. in the meantime, you note that katsuki’s office is meticulously clean, not a single book, folder or pen out of place— it’s high up with a perfect view of the city and the large windows allow golden beams of the sun to light up the room. the sound of a phone being placed back on its hook brings you from your thoughts; annoyance settling deep in your veins as you turn to face bakugou again.
“i had it,” you growl lowly, jumping the gun before he can even register what you’ve said. “i’m a grown woman, katsuki, i can handle a couple of criminals myself, you know.”
the blasting hero does nothing but smirk even wider at the irked tone that litters your voice, standing up as well to tower over you. bakugou still wears his own hero costume, considerably in less damage than yours— not a single tear had formed in his suit, mind the small scratches on his face no doubt from his stupid explosions creating some debris. leaning over the desk between you, bakugou uses a forefinger and thumb to tilt your head up, bringing you even closer than before. “clearly y’didn’t sweetheart, or otherwise that icyhot bastard wouldn’t have needed to back you up ‘fore i got there...” his timbre voice sends sparks of electricity through the air in the room, it’s low and gravelly which is enough to send shivers down your spine but you’re not about to let katsuki bakugou know that he makes you flustered— it’d go straight to his head, the cocky bastard.
nonetheless; you roll your eyes at the mention of your old classmate and fellow pro hero— shoto todoroki. yourself and shoto got along fairly well, even back in high school, so it was normal for you to work together from time to time; you both made a great team and your skill set complimented each other’s well. katsuki was just jealous. he never really got along with todoroki like that. “he didn’t back me up, we were working together,” you snap back at the blonde, shaking yourself from bakugou’s grasp and flicking him right between those alluring vermillion eyes. “something you might not be familiar with, mister number two.” bakugou backs away from you completely ( only wincing slightly ), making you smirk in victory. you’ve struck a nerve. deciding to leave the conversation at that, you turn to make your exit as he collapses back into his seat with a deathly scowl and a quiet ‘tch’. “like i said, i had it, dynamight. next time, don’t jump in uninvited.”
happy that you got the last laugh, you open the door to leave his office but pause when a wave of heat hits your back. you should have known, katsuki bakugou was never one to back down from a challenge and you certainly weren’t an exception. well shit. when you turn around to face the blonde, small explosions spark from his right hand and he has some what of a look of a feral pomeranian, blood red eyes full of rage.
you visibly gulp and katsuki growls out his next words with the upmost venom, designed to hurt and cut at your feelings. “well maybe y’sudda let the actual pros handle shit like this,” bakugou begins, voice rising in volume with every syllable that passes his lips. “we both know you’re no good at short distance attacks with your quirk, shitty woman, you couldn’t have taken those villains down without me.” the blonde finishes with a short ‘tsk’, settling the explosions that spark in his palms. now it’s your turn to be pissed. you could handle katsuki’s jealousy, his petty reasoning for joining you on your patrol and taking the credit but bashing you and your quirk? no way in hell would he get away with that.
“what? the fuck y’still here for?”
you roll your shoulders, gracing the blonde with a devilish smile as your eyes light up mischievously. “why are you hitting yourself, bakugou?” you sing, hitting just the right notes that will have him under your spell, the tone in your voice as smooth as chocolate. katsuki’s eyes widen in horror and before he can stop himself, his free hand comes up to slap him across the face. that was your quirk, lullaby. you had the ability to sing your way out of any situation— adjusting the tune of your song to control the actions of certain individuals or groups of people. it was near impossible to resist but the more people you used your quirk on, the weaker your control over them was. that doesn’t mean you weren’t going to use it on bakugou from time to time. the blonde tries to fight it, he really does, but he’s no use up against your ability— losing all control of his own body. he grunts on impact, looking bewildered for a moment as he moves to grab his own wrist to stop any impending blows. “not so cocky now, are we dynamight?”
“h-hey!” he stammers, refusing to accept defeat against you. “shitty woman, no fuckin’ fair. you know i can’t use my quirk against you in here.” he was right, while your quirk was poor against short distance attacks ( meaning you had to result to hand to hand combat ), bakugou couldn’t use his own in enclosed spaces without hurting anyone he didn’t want to. especially you, he would never hurt you intentionally unless you were sparring.
“shoulda thought about that before you decided to taunt me, you know better than to piss off your wife, katsu.” you chide, still smiling just as brightly as you were earlier, before taking a seat on his desk and folding one leg over the other. it was quite amusing to watch your husband of four years fight against himself— everyone knew katsuki had an unbelievable amount of strength even without his quirk so he was definitely beating himself up ( literally and figuratively ).
bakugou looks up at you through gritted teeth while he struggles to keep the wrist you have control of down and you almost feel bad for the guy. “turn it off, dammit!” he curses at you, said hand rising above his free one to tug at his own sun kissed locks.
feigning interest in the objects on your lover's desk, you ignore his pleas for you to release him from the holds of your quirk and hum “apologise.”
“f-fuck... fuck y-you.”
you sigh knowingly, picking up a hand crafted paperweight, covered in glitter and sequin stars,  inspecting it carefully. bakugou could hardly ever say the word ‘sorry’, it was just in his nature and he’d been that way since you were young. part of you knows it’s because of how he was treated as a child where people praised him for his quirk. that meant he became prideful yes, thought highly of himself too and struggled to admit when others were right...but he had his own way of apologising— through actions instead of words.
like when you first moved in together and he had broken your favourite mug, instead of saying he was sorry, he spent all night super glueing it back together for you to use in the morning. to him, actions were louder than words but you right now; you were being mean and just wanted to hear him say it.
“fuck fuck, fine. alright. ‘m sorry.” bakugou lets out a strained growl as the hand you control gives a particularly hard yank to his hair. “i’m sorry for lying about your quirk. it’s not shitty…’n ‘m sorry for... barging in on your patrol. again.” you grin, satisfied with his answer and grab the hand he keeps down with his wrist. you press a simple kiss to the skin, making your husband blush as you release your hold over the limb. katsuki shyly yanks it from your grip, rubbing over the area that you’d kissed, shooting his gaze to the side in the process. “jesus shitty woman, if i don’t die from being a hero or of old fucking age, i know for a fact you’ll be the one to kill me first.” he mutters harshly under his breath, but you know he’s only kidding from the way his hands now fall to your thighs and his fingers rub small circles into the exposed skin.
“pro hero nightsky murders number two pro hero dynamight in cold blood!” you joke as if you’re reading a headline in a news article, katsuki only glares up at you— making no effort to curse you out because of your shitty joke, which causes you to frown while leaning  forward to brush some of his hair away from his face. “you know i’m only kidding right? is something wrong? did i come at a bad time?”
it’s only now that you notice the exhausted expression that paints your lover’s face. he’s always up to playing this game with you, at the same time every day— you come to bother him about some trivial matter, tease him a bit and leave with a kiss. but today, you can tell he’s trying to hide something from you. something that bothers him.
bakugou shakes his head, leaning into your touch as you play with his hair— a habit he’d picked up from even before you started dating back in high school, although he’d never admit that to you if you’d asked. “nothin’, just this stupid fuckin’ interview the PR team want me to do about the fight today. the one i took from you,” your husband smirks slightly at the thought and you roll your eyes for what seems like the nine hundredth time that afternoon. “didn’t get to finish my fuckin’ lunch but they promised me a couple days off if i got the interview done.”
“better the number two than me, eh? but don’t worry, i’ll order us some take out tonight,” your suggest, voice coming out as soft and mingling with your slight giggle— a quiet melody to katsuki’s ears. your only reply from him is a grunt, so you stop your fingers in his hair and watch as he scowls up at you. you quickly press a kiss to the explosive hero’s lips, pulling away to reveal his blushing face. you smile, knowing that you’re the only one who can make him flush red like that. “there’s something else bothering you, isn’t there?”
if there’s one thing katsuki bakugou hates, it’s how you read him like an open book. one look at him and it’s like you know exactly how he’s feeling. he can never hide anything from you— sometimes that both pisses him off and reminds him of how much he is loved by you. he hesitates with his words at first but decides to confide in you anyway, knowing that you’ll get it out of him in one way or another. “‘m worried about you, dumbass.” he mumbles, nudging your hand with his head as if to ask you to continue your earlier actions. “i know you had it, yer fuckin’ powerful but you looked so tired in that fight today ‘n i thought something bad was gonna happen to you, y’fuckin’ shitty woman.”
he toys with the tears in your costume now, smoothing over scars from your bumps and scratches as a result of combat. “oh lovebug,” you mumble, cupping his cheeks to make him look up at you. “you know i can handle my own, they just took a lot out of me today. i promise i’ll—“
“that’s not it, fuck,” katsuki cuts you off, brows furrowing deeply as he grabs your wrists— pulling your from his desk and into his lap. he holds you close, burying his nose into your neck as if you’re going to disappear. you sit still, a little shocked by his actions and his quick change of mood, but wrap your arms around him anyway and slowly fall silent. “it's just that...we’re both pros now and at the top of our ranks ‘n we both have a lot to lose.” you instinctively cling tighter to katsuki, mind flickering to the homemade paperweight you’d spotted on his desk earlier... causing your heart clench.
your daughter had made that for him during her time at preschool for fathers day; something your husband cherished with his whole heart, even if the thing was still sticky with glue when he’d gotten it.
katsuki loved taiga more than anything in the world and if something had happened to her because of your line of work, you don’t know what either of you would do. “what if something were to happen to you? or to me? or shit...both of us? who would look after taiga? you know what happens to kids who end up in the fucking system.” bakugou pauses, the same tired expression from earlier now sitting heavily on his face. “i just want you to be careful, stop pushing yourself so much, y’fuckin’ dumbasss. we have a family take care of. it’s not just you and i anymore.”
you nod, grasping onto your lover’s clothes tightly. the air is flooded with a comfortable silence, the pair of you holding one another right the way through it. you treasure moments like this, where the world stops and katsuki shows you another, more vulnerable side to him.
he would never admit or show this to anyone; but he cares , more than he lets on... especially for you and especially for your daughter. he was attentive, paid attention to you and your weaknesses and helped you overcome them. it was something you couldn’t stop loving about him. “i promise to be more careful, for you and for taiga,” you say quietly after he’s done scolding you, brushing your lips against the side of his head in a soft peck. “that must’ve been why jumped in earlier, you were worried about me?”
“somethin’ like that, you crazy woman,,” bakugou whispers, there’s a tinge of fondness to his ruby eyes as you pull away to look at him, his hands settling on your hips while he moves up to press a soft kiss to your awaiting lips. “didn’t want you getting yourself killed.”
you stay with katsuki in the office for a little longer than usual, laying on his chest as he prattles away about everything and anything even though he should be working. you make sure he eats his lunch, despite how cold it is and promise him a boat load of take out when he comes home later— your sweet cuddling session only being cut short by a call from your assistant to tell you that your daughter is ready to be picked up from school. “better finish that interview katsu, taiga’ll be happy to know her daddy’s getting some time off to spend with her soon,” you remind him as you gather yourself together, your husband pouting ( he swears on his life he wasn’t ) from the loss of your warmth in his lap. “she has a lot to tell you.”
the blonde quirks a brow, watching you as you head for the door. “yeah? like what?” a hand comes up to cover your mouth as you giggle at his curious face. sometimes, when you look at katsuki, you could see how much your daughter resembles him, right down to his mannerisms. she had somehow inherited the shape of your nose and the brightness of your smile ( the only reason barely anyone realised bakugou had a kid, he never fucking smiled. ) but the bakugou genes were incredibly strong so there was no way she’d miss out on those crimson eyes and uncontrollable, untameable messy blonde hair.
she even acted like him. a very brazen little girl who knew what she wanted and how to get it, so she had her daddy wrapped around her stubby little fingers.
you grin, eyes sparkling with the same mischief as before. “oh y’know, just her little crush on midoriya’s boy.”
“yer fuckin’ kiddin’ me.”
“i would never joke about such a thing,  just make sure you’re home in time for dinner, number two!” you squeal, dashing out of the office before your husband has time to demand more answers from you. slamming the door shut, you chuckle at the melody of curses that leave your husbands mouth before heading off to pick up your daughter.
on your way, you admit to yourself , that maybe you didn’t have this fight in the bag. but what you did have; was a loving husband, a beautiful daughter and the best life you could have ever imagined.
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extended ending:
“so, taiga... daddy hears you have a little... crush on someone.”
you’re in the kitchen, washing the dishes from tonight’s dinner as bakugou wipes tentatively at your little girl’s messy face— she was a poor eater but it’s something you didn’t mind, not when your husband was so soft with cleaning her up. you can see them from where you stand, watching katsuki knowingly.
taiga looks up from the colouring you’d set out for her when she finished up her meal, crimson eyes shining brightly as she fixes her gaze on her father. “mhm mhm!! he’s mister deku’s son! and i’m gonna marry him!”
“no yer not.” bakugou answers simply, looking close to popping a vein.
“why not?”
your husband scoffs, throwing away the tissue he’d used to clean his little girl up before joining her in her colouring. “‘cause daddy says so ‘n boys are gross, especially ones who’s dad’s look like broccoli.” the older ash blonde seems satisfied with his answer, grinning to himself as you dry the dishes with an amused smile.
but taiga isn’t finished, swapping her green crayon for a red one to finish up her drawing. “but you’re a boy...and mommy still married you!”
bakugou pauses, lost for words as taiga continues to colour— humming the theme song from a commercial for some of deku’s merch. you can tell it’s taking everything katsuki’s got not to combust right there on the spot, but he can’t stay mad at taiga for too long, not when she’s describing her wedding and how her daddy is going to walk her down the isle.
setting the dishes to dry and towelling your hands; you smile to yourself as you admire your family. some would say you had it all, and looking at the pair of bakugou’s now, who were you to deny the truth.
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waugh-bao · 2 months ago
The Most Underrated Stones Friendship: Keith + Charlie
Everyone loves The Glimmer Twins, Keith and Ronnie's weaving partnership, and Mick's 46 year long quest to find out the acceptable limit for molesting a bandmate (Ronnie) on stage, but these two, who seem so different, deserve way more appreciation.
10. According to Ian Stewart, one of the reasons he pushed to have Charlie in the band is that Keith is naturally introverted, and struggled to interact with people, but bonded with Charlie instantly. "I'd watch Keith with other people, and he always seemed to back away a bit. But he and Charlie were a f*ckin' comedy team. They had a dual sense of humor.”
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9. Keith is incredibly attentive to Charlie's well being. He takes note of his migraines (even though he's never had so much as a headache himself) and massages his shoulders during the halfway break in shows, to help with pain from sciatica. In Life, he even admitted that part of the reason he was so angry at Mick for starting his solo career the way he did in the '80s was because he saw how hurt Charlie was by it.
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8. “Keith never ever offered me anything [drugs], ever.”-Charlie Watts, 2001
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7. Charlie was the one who convinced Keith to start a band for himself during the Stones' '80s hiatus, and, though he refused Keith's many offers to make him drummer for that project, he did set him up with Steve Jordan, who became the drummer for all of his non-Stones work. On the flip side, Keith is super supportive of his friend's solo work; he has a part on almost all of Charlie's albums, and often attends his concerts.
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6. As Charlie is notoriously shy and humble, and very hesitant to receive any applause/praise, Keith started the tradition of everyone on stage bowing to him during his introduction. He's also in the habit of holding Charlie's hand during final bows, and pushing him out in front of himself so the audience can see him.
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5. "I want to be buried next to Charlie Watts."-Keith Richards, 2016
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4. That look™, which Keith has been giving Charlie for 59 years.
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3. Keith is Charlie's PR manager/hype man/promoter and biggest fan during interviews. "Charlie Watts, who is the best jazz drummer of the goddamn century." And Keith never has a bad word to say about him in Life, and praises all of his eccentricties and strange hobbies. In fact, during the part of the book which concerns the formation of the Stones, he goes on for 20 pages about how badly they wanted Charlie, what an amazing drummer he was and is, how he was the "secret" to the Stones' success, and how much he still loves him now. “We starved ourselves in order to pay for him! Literally. We went shoplifting to get Charlie Watts. We cut down on our rations we wanted him so bad, man. And now we're stuck with him!"
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2. They. Never. Stop. Cuddling. Or holding hands, wrapping an arm around each other, leading each other around the stage, smiling at each other, etc.
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1. When journalists started to question whether Keith would find a replacement for Charlie, because of old age and how strenuous it is to play the drums, Keith said he would rather "drop" (die) before finding another drummer. His mantra for nearly six decades: "Charlie is The Rolling Stones. Without him we wouldn’t have a group.”
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671 notes · View notes
lilyofthesword-writes · 8 months ago
Cafes & Couches (Loki Oneshot)
Summary: You wake up to find you and Loki are cuddling on the couch.
Pairing: Soft!Loki x Reader
Word Count: 6,382
Warnings/Disclaimers: Reader is mostly gender neutral. Coupe of spots where Thor uses female pronouns. Some cursing. Mostly fluff.
A/N: I’d like to thank @frostedgiant​ and @creeping156tin​ for beta reading this! You’re the best! <3
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Shifting gently, you noticed the light filtering through your eyelids. Morning already? You groaned softly, not ready to start the day just yet. Saturdays were one of your few days to sleep in, and you relished in it. Feeling overwhelming groggy, you turned your face to bury it in the arm of the couch, but instead of meeting the cheap but surprisingly soft fabric, there was hair. It’s not totally uncommon but you usually have it pushed back from your face for bed. Then you were aware of what had become rarer for you, especially since moving into this apartment: a weight draped across your waist and warm puffs of air against your collarbone.
You bit down on your lip, a habit of yours in an attempt to delay panic. You just needed to stay calm and think. Opening your eyes to see who the hell was being clingy with you would be a great next step. Taking a deep breath, you slowly pried one of your eyes open. After adjusting to the light, your other eye quickly followed suit at the sight. A head of long, raven-colored hair was tucked under your chin with the owner’s forehead nestled in your neck. The fog of your brain had finally dissipated long enough for it to short circuit all over again when his grip on your waist tightened, pulling you closer (if that was even possible).
Loki. Loki the God of Mischief was in your dingy apartment, lying on your crappy couch with his head cradled in your arms.
About a year ago, you had moved to New York City to give yourself a desperately needed change. After securing a job, you snagged a small but affordable apartment. The job itself was nothing huge, just a cubicle office worker but the amount of work kept you from getting bored. A couple weeks after settling in, you decided it was time to explore the area. You had hoped to find a coffee shop on the way to work where you could spend a little time not cooped up in your apartment or at work.
There was the obligatory Starbucks, overcrowded and overpriced. It would not quite fit in with your budget. A short distance further, you came across this little cafe on a corner. It didn’t stand out much. You could easily miss it if you didn’t know what you were looking for. Lucky break. By that time, it was late afternoon and the place only held a few patrons. It was a chance to at least try what they had to offer. You stepped inside and placed your order. The sandwich and tea you had were perfect, and the staff was polite and on point. As you ate, you took in your surroundings. It had a vintage feel with the crackling brick walls and prints of famous old masters artworks. The place was bound to be filled with the hipster crowd during the normal rush, but that didn’t bother you. The place was quaint. You would definitely be back.
Monday morning rolled around. You had set your alarm an hour early so you could spend time at the cafe without being late for work. Your hope vanished as you reached the corner. The place was packed. You wondered if there would even be a place to sit, or if you would need to place a to-go order and find a bench at the nearby park. Hopping in line before it grew too long, you glanced around the seating area. Situated in a far corner, you spied a small table with two empty chairs. You doubted it would still be available by the time your order would be ready but you still kept peering over just in case.
Luckily, the line moved quickly. The staff was even more on point during the rush than they were over the weekend. Before you knew it, you had ordered, your coffee was in hand and the table was still free. You bolted for it, earning a few curious looks from the customers nearby. Shrugging it off, you sat down and pulled out a well-used copy of the first Howl’s Moving Castle book you had stashed in your bag.
Nearly halfway through your coffee, you realized some of the people around you had gone quiet. You glanced up from your book to see them side-eyeing you worriedly before pointedly looking away. With a raised eyebrow, you returned to your reading. You weren’t about to let them ruin your time.
“Excuse me, Miss.”
You flinched, not having noticed anyone come up to you. Quickly setting your book down, you raised your attention to the person who had approached you.
“Y-yes?” The words almost caught in your throat. A gentleman with long, black hair and an equally dark suit stood before you. His aventurine eyes stared back at you quizzically.
“Is this seat taken?” He asked, gesturing to the empty chair across from you.
It took you a minute to realize you were staring. “Oh! N-no! It’s all yours,” you stammered with an attempted smile.
He nodded, “Thank you.” A polite smile tugged on his lips as he sat. Pulling out a book of his own, he quietly sipped on a fragrant Earl Grey tea.
You took a swig of coffee before diving back into your novel to try to lose yourself in the text. “Try” being the keyword. You could not help stealing glances at the handsome stranger. He looked so familiar. You were certain he had caught you looking several times as you noticed a small smile form on his lips every now and then. The Count of Monte Cristo paperback he held was not a comedy. Your nervousness mixed with the coffee was more than likely betraying your need to be discreet. Thankfully for you, that smile was his only acknowledgement.
Managing to finish your now barely warm coffee, you checked your watch. It was time to leave for the office. You placed your book in your bag and made to stand but paused. Would it be rude to just get up and leave without saying a word; or would it be worse to say goodbye to a man you had barely spoken to? Biting your lip, you mulled over your options. Better to be awkward than come off a rude bitch...
You steeled yourself with a smile. “Well, I have to head out. Table’s all yours. Have a nice day!”
The words, though not a terrible choice, tumbled out your mouth as you quickly rose to your feet. While snatching up your cup to throw away as you exited, you almost missed the man’s soft chuckle. “Same to you, Little Mortal.”
You whisked yourself out the door and to the office before you could process what he said. It wasn’t until you plopped down in your cubicle that it hit you. Little Mortal? What an odd choice of words. Why would anyone say that?
The next morning played out similarly. The busy cafe was full, save for the one table. You settled down in the same seat and picked up where you left off in your book. Just like before, the people around you suddenly grew eerily quiet. You looked up to find the gentleman approaching you.
“May I?” He had the same polite smile as the previous day.
“O-of course,” you replied, attempting to replicate his smile.
You both read your respective novels. When it was time to leave, you bid him a nice day again.
That night, you finally took the time to think about the past two mornings. You would have done it the night before but you kind of passed out on top of your bed covers after dinner. His eyes were so striking. Then, there were his sharp cheekbones and jawline that could cut glass. And that hair... Those locks that tumbled gracefully down his shoulders would make anyone green with envy. But why were the cafe patrons so weird around him? It almost seemed like they were scared. And why did he call you “Little Mortal”?
Lost in thought as you flipped through the TV channels, the news came up. They were doing a story on the Avengers. Something about an attack that happened last month that they managed to put a stop to. That’s when it dawned on you. The video cut to footage of interviews with various team members. The gentleman was there in the background, but instead of the suit, he was clad in green and gold armor. You felt yourself go lightheaded. The guy you had been sharing a table with was Loki. Well, shit. Now what? He couldn’t possibly show up a third day in a row.
Day three and the table was still free when you made it to the cafe. You took your freshly prepared beverage (this time it’s Irish Breakfast tea), inhaled deeply and strolled over to that corner with a “Fuck It” attitude. After seeing the news report the night before, you decided to do some research. There were hundreds of articles, most were obviously PR stories on all the good Loki had done since he returned to Earth to work with the Avengers after the Battle of New York. The rest were by journalists and bloggers who hated him, not believing he could atone for killing so many innocent people. While they did have a point, if he really was so evil, why would he be drinking tea in a public cafe when he could hole himself up in the Avengers tower to not be around the mass public he supposedly hated? It didn’t make sense. Maybe there was more to his story than what others knew. From what you had seen, he didn’t seem so bad. Even if that table was his normal spot, you had sat together for two days in a row without a word from him. If Loki did not want you there, he could say something.
You settled in with your book, sipping gingerly on your tea. You tried to remain calm but the anticipation was flittering in your stomach. What if he wasn’t going to be as pleasant as he had before? Taking another deep breath, you looked up from your novel just in time to see him arrive at the table. Gesturing at the other chair, you smiled without a word. This time he chuckled as he sat. Oh boy... Was that a good thing?
Instead of immediately pulling out his chosen text for the morning, he leaned back in his chair and took a drink of his tea. “You are either very brave, or you haven’t figured out who I am, Little Mortal.”
Your eyes shot up and locked onto his face. He was staring off into the crowd with a smirk, one that was borderline playful. With a cheeky smile of your own, you went back to your book. “You tell me, Loki.”
Feeling his gaze shift and bore into you, you cringed inwardly. Was that such a bad answer? You glanced up at him with a smile that hopefully hid your perpetually growing anxiety. When your eyes caught each other, you found yourself unable to look away. Those green eyes with a splash of blue while captivating were intense. His face was blank as he stared back at you. Was this some kind of test, or was he just trying to make you uncomfortable enough to leave?
It felt like hours before he finally broke the staring contest. A hint of a smile tugged on his lips as his book materialized in his hand with a green shimmer. Not another word was spoken. Not that day or the rest of the week for that matter. The new morning routine fell into a tolerable silence. It wasn’t the worst thing in the world but it could be better. But maybe there was a way to change that.
The following Monday rolled around, and you had a plan. Kind of. It was quick and to the point. The chances of it working were slim but it was worth a shot. You probably would not come off as annoying but definitely not rude. Already in your spot with the next book in the series, you awaited your companion. Maybe companion was too strong of a word. Acquaintance would be better.
Right on time, Loki slid into the other seat.
“Good morning,” you smiled, eyes not leaving the text.
His gaze was on you in an instant but it felt different from the last time. As if to garner your attention, he leaned on the table, bringing himself closer to you. “Do you wish me a good morning, or mean that it is a good morning whether I want it or not; or that you feel good this morning; or that it is a morning to be good on?”
You stared at the page you were on. Did he just? Turning to face Loki, you found his self-branded smirk. Not quite sure what had gotten into you, you mirrored his expression while also leaning on the table. “All of them at once, I suppose.”
With a laugh, he leaned away into his chair with his book suddenly in hand. And just like that you two were quiet again, though the atmosphere was notably different. It was comfortable. Maybe you would call him a companion in due time.
Before you knew it, a few months had flown by. You felt like you were coming into your own here. You had a couple of work friends who you would spend time with on the weekends, sometimes after work. Your apartment was starting to feel like a home with the little decorations you picked up occasionally on your outings. Then there were your mornings with Loki. Admittedly, he was pleasant to be around. Conversations had started and held throughout most of the time you spent there. Your books more often than not were abandoned on the table while you chatted. At first, they were only about various novels you and Loki had read but eventually they evolved past that.
“So I have be nosy here. What made you start coming here? I figured Stark would have some fancy kitchen contraption in the Tower that would make coffee and tea better than anywhere around here.”
“He does, actually,” Loki snickered. “But I wished for something that did not involve my oaf of a brother or Stark’s incessant rambling. I discovered this establishment and found it to be acceptable. I might as well try to enjoy some of my time here.”
“I take it you’re not a fan of living in the Tower,” you frowned.
He shook his head. “Absolutely not. I am under constant surveillance by both the Avengers and SHIELD. This is the one place where I find some semblance of peace.”
“I hope I didn’t ruin that for you by being here...” You look away, chewing your lip and fiddling with your fingers in your lap.
“Darling, if you did, I would have scared you away a long time ago.”
The new nickname set butterflies ablaze in your stomach. You looked back at him with a shy smile. “Glad I’m not as annoying as others.”
He smirked at you. “Not annoying, no. Though you can be quite entertaining.”
“Oh? How so?” You asked, quirking an eyebrow playfully.
“Oh for instance, your little rant on Romeo and Juliet not being quite as romantic as everyone deems.”
Blood rushed through your face to the tips of your ears. Oh, yeah... That discussion had turned into a bit of a one-sided rant...
“Quite adorable, in my opinion.” He leaned closer to you still with his signature grin, causing your face to flush even more.
“Brother! There you are!” A voice thundered across the cafe.
“By the Norns...” Loki scowled as he flopped back in his seat. You didn’t know someone could manage that gracefully but Loki was certainly an overachiever.
Thor blundered around the tables and customers and he raced over to Loki, camera clicks and excited whispers almost deafening you. “You weren’t answering your mobile phone. There’s an emerg- Oh! Apologies, my lady! I did not mean to interrupt.” He turned to you suddenly, the mental whiplash forcing you to take a moment to figure out what just happened.
“I-it’s fine! Nice to meet you, Thor,” you reply, giving him your name.
He beamed at your awkward but polite smile. “The pleasure is mine. Loki has mentioned you quite a bit. Perhaps you should come by the Tower some time. The others would love to-”
“Thor, you mentioned an emergency?” Loki cut in, coldly glaring at Thor - a glare that desperately hid an almost imperceptible blush.
“Right! Fury has a new mission for us. We’re required for briefing shortly.”
You smiled to yourself. Thor really is a big puppy in disguise.
Loki sighed dramatically before taking a final sip of his tea. “My apologies, Dove, but it seems I must cut our morning short.” He stood and gave you a small bow. “Until next time.”
“No worries! It’s almost time for me to head to work anyways. Stay safe, both of you!”
With that they left, not before Thor waved goodbye like a little kid near the door while grinning at his brother. Loki smiled at you one more time before he grimaced at Thor and allowed him to lead the way.
Taking another drink from your cup, you checked your watch. Crap! It really is time to leave! You grabbed your bag, standing while making sure you had all of your stuff. Before pulling away, you noticed Loki had left his nearly empty drink behind. Although that was not like him, he had been in a rush. You picked up his cup to throw it away along with yours and found a slip of paper neatly folded in half underneath. Shifting the cups to one arm, you took it and unfolded it to reveal what looked like a phone number.
It was two weeks later when you finally met with Loki at the cafe again. The number he had left for you was for his cell, a suspicion confirmed when you texted it after work that day. The conversation was rather short, mostly making sure you had each other’s numbers saved. You wished each other well, and it was radio silence from there. Clearly, Loki was not a fan of texting but he did make an effort.
To say you were excited to see him enter the cafe was an understatement. You actually had missed the God of Mischief and Chaos. How many people could say that? Your mornings had been so bland and lonely without him. Even your coworkers noticed the change in your mood, despite having done your best at hiding it. Your two work friends knew how you spent your mornings before work and just gave you knowing smiles when they noticed your façade slip which you would then respond with a quiet “shut up” before turning away from their giggling.
Loki took his spot with his normal dramatic sigh. “I never thought I’d be happy to make it back to this city.”
“Good morning to you, too,” you snickered. “That bad, huh?”
“You don’t want to know.” He let out an exasperated sigh.
Taking a moment to study him, he looked exhausted. “When did you get back into town?”
“Around three this morning.”
You almost choked on your tea. “Seriously? Shouldn’t you be resting?”
He barked out a laugh. “Gods do not need as much rest as you think.”
“Loki...” you scolded, worry lacing your tone.
“Besides, I was not about to miss another morning with my favorite little mortal,” he said matter-of-factly while hiding part of his face with his cup.
Does he actually enjoy spending time with me? You had never expected Loki to admit to something like that.
He cleared his throat, breaking up the silence that had fallen between you two. Apparently, you went quiet for too long. “Before I forget to mention it, Stark and Rogers are planning a ‘game night,’ I believe they called it,” he started, questioning his terminology, “For tomorrow night. They thought it might be more entertaining if each of us brought a companion. Perhaps you would be interested in joining me?”
Loki was still obscuring his face like the cup was a cloak of invisibility. All you could manage to do was stare. This was the first time he had ever offered to meet up outside of the cafe. You had secretly hoped this would happen but never expected it. He looked uninterested as he stared off in the distance but the glimmer of hope in his eyes solidified your decision.
“Sounds like it could be fun,” you grinned. “What time?”
His eyes widened but only for a moment before turning to you for eye contact. “About six in the evening. Do you know how to get there?”
Nodding, you said, “The Tower, right? Kinda hard to miss.”
A smile ghosted his lips. “Stark is an extravagant one, among other things,” he said, muttering the last part.
“So I’ve gathered,” you snickered while keeping to yourself a comment about how Tony wasn’t the only one. You weren’t sure how Loki would handle that bit of sass. Seriously, though. The god wore a suit every morning just for tea at a local cafe. “Now what kind of games are we talking?”
Loki brought a finger to his chin. “You know, I am not sure. As I was leaving, they had started arguing about that. I remember something about... Scrabble and Mario Kart?”
“Oh no...” you couldn’t help but start laughing. “An old school board game versus a colorful, racing video game.”
“You know of them?”
“Yes,” you buried your face in your hands to stifle your laughter. Calming down, you faced Loki again. “Definitely coming. Even if I don’t play anything, this will be a treat.”
He laughed, a sparkling genuine laugh. “I’ll take your word for it.”
After getting over the fact you had met The Avengers, the night went over fairly well. They had welcomed you with open arms, and you recognized everyone there, so there were no awkward moments where you couldn’t remember someone’s name, something you had dreaded would take place. The argument between Tony and Steve that Loki had mentioned was reprised but was quickly doused with Bruce and Natasha reminding them both games could be played in the same night.
Scrabble was surprisingly alright. Tony managed to add a certain energy to make it more enjoyable. Everyone was split into teams, you and Loki naturally pairing up. You were able to bounce words off each other for maximum points, all the while throwing in some bad puns and observational commentary about the other teams. Poor Thor had the worst time grasping the rules but he really did try, and you were pretty sure Wanda and Vision were cheating. You had heard a bit about Wanda’s abilities. It was too suspicious that she would suddenly come up with a good word to use just after someone else had thought it. You weren’t one of the complainers though. It made the game interesting.
When it came to Mario Kart... Well, that was chaos at its finest, despite the tournament setup Tony had Pepper organize. To say certain team members didn’t do so well... Yeah. Anyone who wasn’t from Earth or born in the past fifty years snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. It’s like they fought for last place.
You watched Loki’s attempt at playing out of the corner of your eye. He genuinely tried but just could not get the controls. At least he wasn’t in last place at the end of the circuit.
“Alright, you’re up!” Tony called out to you while marking Loki off the roster.
With a huff, Loki passed the controller to you so you could finally play. Since you were a new addition, you had been placed at the bottom of the list for play order. By then, Tony was in the lead and was annoyingly boastful. He seemed so confident on the news. Guess being around that 24/7 would get on anyone’s nerves. You were beginning to understand why Loki came to the cafe so often.
Taking the controller, you nudged Loki with your elbow and smirked. “I’ll knock him down a few pegs.”
Snickering at the raised eyebrow you received, you selected your character and vehicle load out. Four tracks later, Tony dropped his controller on the floor. You beat him on the entirety of the circuit. By a landslide. While you figured Loki would have preferred to be the cause of Tony’s disdain, he was sitting back with a satisfied smirk that continued until the end of the night when Tony placed third, you in second and Clint snuck his way in first.
It was after midnight by the time you went to leave the Tower. Loki offered to walk you home. The distance to your apartment wasn’t far but it did make you feel better to have someone with you. Being the gentleman he knew how to be, he brought you up the few flights of stairs to your door.
“Tonight was fun! Thanks for inviting me,” you turned to him while pulling out you keys.
“I have to admit this is the first time any of these events have been enjoyable for me.”
You unlocked your door, laughing softly. “You mean you don’t like Tony flaunting his wins early?”
Loki chuckled while leaning against the wall next to you.
With the door now open, silence engulfed the conversation. “So... Would you like to come inside for a bit?”
He quickly pushed himself off the wall, clearing his throat as nonchalantly as possible. “Perhaps another time... The others will be expecting me back shortly.”
“Right. Well, thank you for walking me home. I appreciate it,” you smiled reassuringly.
“Of course, my dear.” He took your hand in his and raised it.
Your face felt like it was on fire. If anyone else were to make an antiquated attempt to kiss your hand, you would probably smack the shit out of them. Only the overly awkward yet confident people tried that. But... This is Loki we’re talking about. It just felt natural. He met your eyes, an unrecognizable cocktail of emotion swimming in his own. He held your hand so softly as he took pause. Uncertainty flashed across his features before he gave that rare genuine smile.
“Until next time,” he spoke with such a hushed tone so only you could hear. Squeezing your fingers, he promptly took a step back and let your hands glide apart.
You slid through the small open space from your door, watching him turn to leave. As you shut the door, you spun around to lean your back on it, heart pounding. What the hell just happened?!
Maybe you were just tired and read too much into the situation. The sleepy time haze washed over your mind as you relaxed against the door. Yeah, that was it. You shoved yourself upright, towards your bedroom and face planted on the bed, too lazy to actually change into pajamas. Right as you were drifting off, a thought that had your eyes shoot open struck. Why were you the only non-Avengers related person at Game Night?
On Monday morning, you strolled into the coffee shop like normal, thought it was anything but. Stepping in line, you glanced over at your table to find Loki already there just reading away. In the months you two had been meeting, he never arrived first. Almost like he could feel you staring, he raised his gaze to meet yours. Smiling, he closed his book and placed it on the table where there were two cups. Your own lips tugged upwards. You stepped out of line and joined him.
“Well, this is a pleasant surprise. Thanks.” you grinned, taking your seat.
He chuckled, “Sometimes I find it in my heart for good deeds.”
“Better be careful. You might wind up spoiling me.”
“Would that really be so bad?” He leaned towards you with a smirk.
“Mmm...” You faked contemplation. “Maybe not.”
He laughed so genuinely it made your stomach do flips. No, you absolutely were not crushing on him. Although, it’s not like it would matter. There was no way he would reciprocate your growing feelings.
You leaned in to mimic Loki, trying to keep your cool. “So, I have to ask...” Pausing, you bit your lip, suddenly unsure to ask about Game Night.
Loki rested his chin in his palm, giving you his full attention. “Yes?”
“... On Game Night... I guess I’m curious as to why there weren’t more people.” Your nerves drenched your throat.
Loki’s eyebrows shot up. “Well... I suppose they could not attend with how last minute the invites were. The decision to have others join us wasn’t made until the night before I asked you.”
The amount of logic had you floored. It still felt flimsy like there was another message hiding in his words, but that could just be you wanting there to be something more. “That... does make sense,” you said, voice still laced with contemplation.
A minuscule touch of relief dusted his face. “Though I must say, I am rather thankful there were not as many people.”
He hummed in response. “Too many distractions,” he said, looking you dead in the eyes. This man was going to give heart palpitations if he kept this up.
Your gazes tore apart to find Thor dashing towards you, ruining whatever was happening with you and Loki.
“Speaking of which,” you heard Loki mutter under his breath. “Yes, Thor?” He asked, clearly annoyed at the interruption, when the Thunder God reached the table.
“Ah, good to see you again,” Thor nodded at you before turning back to Loki. “We must go. We’ve another mission.”
Loki rolled his eyes with an exasperated sigh. There was always something happening. “It seems I must cut our time short, again, Dove.” His aventurine eyes were speckled with disappointment when they met yours.
“Don’t worry about it,” you shook your head. “You guys have a job to do, right? Go do what you need to do.” You smiled at both of them.
Loki nodded as he stood while Thor seemed dumbfounded. “Until next time,” Loki said, bowing slightly and leading his brother to the door.
The following months were a rollercoaster. Loki was being called on missions more and more often. Some only lasted a couple of days. Others trudged on for weeks. Those were the worst. You tried to catch up on your reading, but it did not hold your attention as much anymore. Where you once were able to lose yourself in Middle Earth or another fantastical realm, your thoughts would turn towards Loki.
There was no reason to worry about him. He was a god, after all, but that didn’t stop your brain from running through various scenarios of what could go wrong which may or may not have fueled how ecstatic you were when you would find him sitting at that little cafe table. Yeah, he started beating you there with a drink waiting for you. Loki always seemed to know exactly what you would want that day, and he would never let you pay for it. He would say it was either as an apology for abruptly cutting off your mornings together or him just wanting to do something nice. As endearing as it was, it did poke at your ego some. You’re an adult. You could pay for yourself.
However. There was a hidden blessing buried beneath the sudden missions. You were seeing more of Loki outside the cafe. There were more Game Nights and even a few Movie Nights. Those nights you got to know the Avengers more, an added bonus. You were still the only extra person there, by the way. With the extra Game Nights, you offered to help Loki “train” so he wasn’t quite so helpless with a game controller in his hands. Those meet-ups took place at your apartment which you were a bit nervous about at first, thinking your undersized home would not be up to his standard, but he never said anything about it. He almost seemed to enjoy being there. It only took a couple of visits for him to get the hang of the games, but even after knocking you down in the tournament rankings and coming close to beating Clint (Turns out he was good because of his kids), Loki insisted on continuing the training sessions. They wound up evolving into regular hangouts where you would end up introducing him to shows and movies he would have never seen otherwise.
Then, the latest mission came up. Loki had said it was supposed to last a couple of weeks which was about normal. Two months had gone by, and you hadn’t heard a peep out of him.
It was another long day at work. With it being Friday night, your work friends tried to invite you out for drinks which you turned down, feeling more exhausted than usual. You had begun to take overtime, partly for the extra money and partly to keep yourself busy. Your friends had noticed your mood change since Loki’s last mission started. Trying to keep you distracted from the lack of texts from him, they were constantly asking you to join them to fill up the time you normally spent with Loki.
Stepping into your apartment, you dropped your bag on the counter, and promptly face planted on your couch, not caring that you should eat despite not feeling hungry in the slightest. You weren’t sure how long you laid like that. It was a knock at the door that brought you out of your semi-meditative state.
Rolling off the couch, you carded your fingers through your hair in an attempt to make it more presentable. You weren’t expecting anyone, but maybe it was your friends showing up to drag you out for the night in spite of your earlier protests. When you opened the door, you had to stop yourself from gasping. It was Loki still dressed in his emerald and gold armor sans helmet. Come to think of it, you had never seen his armor in person before, but that wasn’t what shocked you. It was his eyes. They held a mixture of restlessness, uncertainty, regret, frustration, forlornness...
Without hesitation, your wordlessly ushered him inside. Loki stood there for a moment, looking at you but not really seeing you. It was like his mind was on a separate plain of existence. When he finally stepped into the entryway, you closed the door and turned to him, wanting to say something but nothing found its way to your lips. He kept his back to you, fists clenching and unclenching before bringing them together to pick at his cuticles as he contemplated what to do next. You came up next to him and peered around his side, placing a tentative hand on his forearm to gain his attention. A small part of you realized this was only the third time in all these months you two had ever consciously touched. Apparently, that was all it took for him to look at you. His lips parted slightly like he wanted to speak, but he quickly closed them.
That alone broke you. You had no idea what happened on the mission but you knew it had to be horrid for his silver tongue to fail him like this. Without another thought, you wrapped your arms around his torso, hugging him fiercely.
Everything is alright.
Loki went rigid at the contact, unused to physical displays of affection. Maybe you were crossing a line with this, but when you went to release him and apologize, he pulled you in tighter like you would disappear if anything else were to happen. You buried your face in his chest just as his head was nuzzling into your hair.
It is now.
Time stood frozen while you held each other. It was like it didn’t even exist. At some point, you pulled away just enough to lead him to the couch where he snaked his arms around your waist and hid himself in the crook of your neck.
Now back in the present, you had calmed yourself down from your near panic attack and were combing Loki’s soft hair with your fingers. You couldn’t remember when you fell asleep last night, much less when you both laid down on your sides, but that was fine. Your main focus was now on Loki’s peacefully sleeping form. He never seemed more relaxed than he was at this moment. Your arm under his neck was falling asleep, but you forced yourself not to adjust, afraid to wake him up. Unfortunately, that didn’t seem to matter.
Within a few moments, he inhaled sharply, tightening his grip on you. Loki pulled his head away from you to frantically take in his surroundings, eyes wild with confusion. You tenderly cupped his jawline so as to not startle him further but still gain his attention.
You’re safe.
He stilled upon eye contact and visibly relaxed as he realized where he was. Laying his head on the arm of the couch, he continued staring into your eyes. You could feel him start to draw lazy circles on your back with his thumb.
I know.
His hand trailed up your back and over your shoulder to your cheek with a feather-like softness, closing his eyes as he brought your foreheads together.
Thank you.
Your own eyes shut as you melted into his touch and drink in the moment. It was more than what you could ever ask for. You couldn’t stop yourself from sighing when Loki’s thumb began stroking your cheek bone. It was only when he brushed the tip of his nose against yours that you opened your eyes again. He looked hopeful yet uncertain.
May I?
The corners of your lips tugged upwards ever so slightly.
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eyesofcrows · 5 months ago
He’s a Fenton (Phic Phight)
For @going-dead​
PR:  Ghosts now being pretty much common knowledge, at least in the Midwest. A lot of colleges are offering ecto-studies as a course. Danny seems to know too much on the first day.
B-dug, b-dug, b-dug. Dug-dug.
Professor Lee Wilhelm is not bothered by the rhythmic bouncing of the ball from the back of his class. In fact, he expects a few from the bunch that wouldn’t take the course as seriously as others. After all, it is Intro to Ecto-Biology.
It’s coming from a black-haired boy, who is skillfully bouncing the ball off of every surface and always managing to catch it. If Lee wasn’t supposed to be teaching a class, he’d be impressed. The boy’s been yawning every five minutes, almost like clockwork actually, and didn’t seem to pay the least but attention. Again, expected.
“And that’s the syllabus,” Lee concludes. “Moving on, bring out your ‘Entry to Ecto-Studies’ textbook. We’ll be doing a light overview.”
Lee hadn’t wanted to teach Ecto-Biology; he wanted to teach Entomology and even had an entire lesson plan planned out. But he, unfortunately, brought the interest of ecto-studies during his interview and they’ve stuck it on him. It isn’t a bad job, he had taken it after all, but he had significantly less passion in it. But he wasn’t lying about the interest, so he’ll try his best to teach the subject efficiently. The ghost wildlife and insect section could fulfill him for his entomologist love.
Ecto-Biology is an extremely new field, only opened as of recent years. It’s only an elective since there isn’t much information regarding ghosts. Leading scientists are carefully studying the molecular distinction of material in the ‘Ghost Zone’ and are baffled by the implication that there is a life after death.
He uses the projector and shows off a PowerPoint. “First and foremost, we’ll be going over Ghostly Obsessions for the next two weeks. As you may or may not know, obsessions are the cornerstone of a ghost’s existence. Most of the ghosts that people have studied have more destructive—”
“Professor Wilhelm?” a voice asks, and Lee’s eyes follow to meet the same disinterested boy. He has his hand raised lazily but a furrow is clear on his face. He didn’t even notice when the ball had been put away.
“Yes?” he points at the student.
“The material’s outdated. Like, super old and almost completely wrong.”
“Sorry?” Lee asks confused, but the student nodded as if it’s an actual apology.
He continues, straightening out his bored stature, “Yeah, the whole ‘destructive obsessions’ theory’s been disproved for some time. It was a stereotype back in the day when the only ghosts that’d come to the human world wanted to cause mayhem and calamity. Nowadays, with the political situation of ghosts and humans being settled, the research shows that the entire spectrum that scientists have yet to study.” The boy speaks with the confidence that Lee would have if this class was Entomology—he really wishes that he’d gotten it—and the steady voice of a diplomat. Some of the other students that shared the boy’s previous appearance (half-asleep and uncaring) now show rapidly increasing interest.
Lee’s mind whirls as he tries to make sense of what was just fell off the youth’s tongue. He hadn’t picked the textbook, you see. It was what was given to him off the bat. There was supposed to be another Ecto-Biology professor, however, they dropped out—which is why the university was desperate to fill the space—but not before filling out the application for the provided textbook and getting it approved by the Board.
“Anything else to add, Mister…?” Lee trails off, half-peeved. He puts a hand on his wooden desk and leans into it.
Even so, Lee had also based his entire lesson plan for the semester on the textbook and is not prepared to rewrite that
The student once again oblivious to his professor’s emotions, nods again. “Yeah, I read a bit into the book before class, and the section with the evolution of a ghost’s appearance is wrong too.” He skims through the book for a second before jutting a finger at a page. “Here it is, ‘A ghost’s appearance grows depending on the increased strength of their obsession.’” He closes the book with strong conviction, gaining the entire attention of the class at this point.
“That’s not true. A ghost’s appearance changes when their obsession branches. A popular example is Youngblood, the ghost only seen by children. His obsession is playing and having fun, but his outfit changes according to what game he wants to play. Sometimes it’s pirates, others it’s cowboys, et cetera.” The student who seemed uninterested only moments ago spoke so inviolable that Lee didn’t believe he could dispute at all.
Lee is not the type of professor that stifles a student if they have more knowledge—his RateMyProfessor made that clear—nor to do confrontations either. However, it mostly small information like how baby bees don’t have stingers or how varroa destructors kill off entire bee colonies. (Again, he’s not an ecto-scientist, he is an entomologist.) He didn’t think that the Einstein of Ghost-Biology would appear to an introduction course.
Lee smiles as kindly as he can—his RateMyProfessor also says that his expressions are an open book no matter what impression he tries to give off—and steeples his hand against the desk harshly.
“It sounds like you know a lot about the subject. But if you had a problem with the material, you could’ve emailed me when you first got the textbook.” He tries to wean off the annoyance, but the uncomfortable stares of the other students say that he didn’t do a good job.
The student sighs, still not noticing Lee’s tone. Lee didn’t know if he’s the most oblivious person in the world or he’s just choosing to ignore it. “Yeah, I guess that would’ve been better,” he says conversationally, losing his authority but also putting too much casualness in his words. “Truth be told, I wanted an easy course—”
Lee can’t help the eye-twitch.
“—But I read enough to know there’s misleading stuff in this and I want others to know the correct information. Especially since Ecto-Biology is new and this might be everyone’s first impression on ghosts.”
Lee hears whispers around the classroom now and his brow knits together. He caught a few that questioned Lee’s credentials and position as a teacher. His teeth grind because he hadn’t wanted to teach this course. Dammit, why couldn’t they just have given him Entomology? Now there’s going to be a black mark on his record and his job is in jeopardy.
Lee knows he can’t blame the student, his intentions are good and valid. He knows he shouldn’t have just taken the job because it was the only position handed to him. But he had to scrap some respect before he gets a whirlwind of complaints from his students. Maybe the sack if they’re determined enough.
“Pardon me for asking,” he tries to be polite. “But what are your sources, if you don’t mind?”
A look of surprise appears and a sheepish smile instantly replaces it. The student puts a hand to his neck as if embarrassed. “Oh! Sorry, Professor, I forgot to introduce myself, didn’t I? I got caught up in the moment. Hi, I’m Daniel Fenton, I go by Danny. My parents are, sort of, Jack and Maddie Fenton.”
The claim punches Lee straight in the gut.
Even some of the students snap their heads to him with gaping maws. The whispering stops and is replaced with shocked silence. Even someone not interested in Ecto-studies knows of the scientists that discovered an entirely new dimension. The married couple is basically the leading scientist in the field and makes discoveries daily.
He looks shy, contrasting with every other impression he’s given off, as his eyes sweep the room. “I should’ve started with that, shouldn’t I? Gosh, I must’ve sounded super pretentious. Sorry, sorry.”
Lee struggles to respond, “It’s fine, Mister… Fenton.” He chokes on the name a bit. “I hadn’t realized you were an expert- an actual expert with ecto-biology.”
“No, no,” Danny shook his head, “You were treating me like any other student. Please, continue. I can contact you later.”
Lee does continue, though he tries no to go too in-depth with the information. He’ll do more research after class and change the lessons to be more according to newer research. He needs to increase his credibility before he makes a complete fool in front of his students. Damn, they probably don’t think he’s credible at all by now. If too many students drop the class, he’ll be out of the job.
He plans to cry when going home. Maybe his wife could say just the right things that’ll make everything alright as she always does. And she does, she says he’s a good teacher and he can bounce up. It fills him with enough confidence to not just quit.
The next day, Lee sees that four students dropped the class. As much as it is discouraging, it’s less than he thought would do so. He managed to study more of the research, even if the public knowledge seems to be between old and new research. The first lesson is rushed, but it’s more up-to-date than before.
He’s in the classroom an hour early, sipping on a coffee thermos and editing the PowerPoint for last-minute mistakes. He hasn’t felt this stressed since his actual college days.
Someone knocks on the door nearest to his desk.
“Come in,” he yells, not wanting to stop the flow of focus he has. It’s thirty minutes before class, but he won’t stop a student from coming a little early. He hears the door creak open and doesn’t look up from the laptop. The student’s steps echo and he could hear them pause right in front of his desk.
“Professor Wilhelm?” a timid voice asks him and Lee immediately recognizes the voice.
He lifts his head and makes direct eye contact with the student. His persistent typing ceases at once.
“Mr. Fenton, hello.” His tone is stiff.
Danny Fenton looks nervous and is wearing more presentable clothing than a hoodie; it’s a red polo and his hair looks combed a little. In his arms is a large cardboard box that looks ten times his weight. It’s so large that Lee could barely see Danny’s nose.
“Um,” he says with a stutter, looking at the ground. “I’m sorry about yesterday, you were right about the email thing.”
“No, it’s my fault,” Lee insists, “I should’ve gone over the credentials of the textbooks beforehand. I shouldn’t have pushed any of my frustrations onto you.”
There’s a clear look of guilt on Danny’s face. He kicks his leg back and forth in a little. “Well, anyway, I asked a friend of mine to express ship something as a sorry. Don’t worry, she was more than happy to help me with this.”
Danny lays down the cardboard box to the side of his desk so Lee could see. Danny proceeds to open it and reveal its contents.
“It’s honestly fine, Mr. Fenton. You didn’t need to…” his eyes catch sight of what’s inside. “Get me anything…” Danny hands him one of the copies of the book from the box, and Lee’s hands tremble a little as he looks down on it.
The Whys and Hows of Ecto-Biology: 6th Edition. It’s the Fentons’ latest book. Actually, he swears that the latest is 5th Edition. He remembers trying to get a copy last night but it got bought out too quickly for him to even go to the checkout. How unlucky.
Danny’s foot continues the move rhythmically, “I hope it’s not a problem that it isn’t officially published.” Thus confirming Lee’s suspicions. “There’s twenty in this box, but there are three more boxes right outside the door. I really don’t know how many students take this class but I hope it’s enough.”
Sincerity riddles his voice and Lee feels tear prick his eyes. He doesn’t ever remember a student that went through so much effort for him. At most, they gave him a trinket or two. He sniffs a little and Danny looks concerned instantaneously. The very face makes Lee laugh a little.
He scoots his chair back and stands up, putting on the widest smile he’s ever had. The suddenness shocks the boy slightly and he jumps a little.
“It’s more than enough. Now c’mon, let’s get those boxes from the hallway. I don’t want them gathering dust already, Fenton.”
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writingwithcolor · 4 months ago
Biracial (Black & White), Caribbean Colombian person
Hi! I’m making this post because I’d like to see better representation for Latin American Caribbean people in the media! The media and books usually have a very specific concept for Latine characters and I’d like to give you more options. I’m from the Caribbean region of Colombia, I’m half-Black and I immigrated to continental Mexico when I was a child. 
My mom is Black and my dad is a white mestizo. That means that he looks white but has heavy Indigenous ancestry. I have light brown skin, Black features and curly hair. In Latin America, race works a bit different than in the US. There’s three groups, white, indigenous and Black people, and people can be categorized in either of those categories and people who are mixed also get categorized depending on what you’re mixed with and how close to whiteness you look like. These are the vestiges of the racial caste system that was imposed on us during the days of the colony. 
All Latin American people still live and have the privileges or oppression within those terms, and live within them, though a lot of us (mostly the privileged ones) don’t give it too much thought. Also! We don’t really connect race and culture the same way USA people do, because of politics within our governments that tried to gaslight us into believing that race and culture are not connected at all.
Therefore, the conflicts mixed people with two Latin American parents have are a bit different. I don’t have to pick between my Black side and my white side because I’ve always been perceived as a half-Black person, people perceive me through my closeness to Blackness. 
I have a sister, and she looks like a white-mestizo, and she never has to pick between her Black and her white side because people will always perceive her as a white-mestizo person. It’s not about picking sides or identifying with a side more, it’s about the way you look and the experiences you will be bound to have because of the way you look. 
With that in mind, I’ll need you know that mixed race people can look like whatever both of our parents look like! I know mixed race people that look unambiguously one race, but people prefer to portray us as ambiguous looking people and that gives way to the prevalence of white supremacy in the media and fetishization of mixed people. There’s a lot of people here in Latin America that get into interracial relationships because they want ambiguous looking children and then make the child go through hell if they end up looking completely like a person of color. That’s fucked up, and I think portraying non ambiguous looking mixed race characters would help with that. Specially if you make them look completely like a person of color! 
Micro-aggressions, Racism
I moved from a mainly Black area of Caribbean Colombia to a mainly white/mestizo area in Mexico. When you’re the only person that looks Black in a mainly white area prejudice and racism is something you probably will have to endure. Latin America is blatantly anti-Black. And non-Black people are usually blind to their own anti-blackness. Every time I’ve had disagreements, or when non-Black people don’t like me, they spit out the most anti-Black stuff, and slurs.
People give me a lot of shit because of my features and my skin, people always tried to convince me that because of them I was uglier, I was less. Even people that are mixed with indigenous try to make sure that you know that you and them are not the same because you are mixed with Black.  Keep in mind that I also have privilege because I look like a light skin Black person. I’m lucky I’ve never been constantly bullied or physically assaulted. 
Also! Caribbean culture is usually despised or seen as less in Latin America because of its closeness to Blackness, continental Colombians usually see Caribbean Colombians as: 
Vulgar, poor, uneducated, “hood" 
Overly loud people (yes a lot of us talk loud! And fast! And we’re joyful! But white and continental Latines usually see that as distasteful) 
They relate us to zoofilia and bestiality for some reason?
Caribbean men are seen as predatory.
Caribbean women are seen as overly sexual, insatiable. 
They see our culture as class-less. 
They see our accents, dialects as primitive and improper. 
A lot of these are prejudices that are perpetuated by white people in the US too. Anti-Blackness is global. 
A big part of my experience too was that people use to give me a lot of shit because of my accent, they tried to deem me as ignorant because of it and teachers and coaches used to spend hours when I was a child trying to “correct it”, even my white, Mexican dad at home said that my accent made me less than my white and indigenous Mexican peers. Caribbean Spanish dialects are heavily influenced by African tongues, the prejudice non-Caribbean have against it is, again, its closeness to Blackness. The fact that I was so pushed into correcting it both by adults and kids made me develop a stutter when I was a child, and overall messed with my ability to express my thoughts out loud. I think that’s a thing that other immigrants can relate to. 
People will try to strip you from anything that makes you you, even your own family. My customs were diminished too, Caribbean music, Caribbean ways of styling ourselves were diminished too. It’s a huge reason why I’m even closer to them. 
Caribbean women are usually sexualized a lot. Like- a lot. I’m AFAB so I gotta go through that. People see our culture as something exotic, they see the way we look as something inherently more sexual than other cultures. Caribbean culture is heavily influenced by African culture, Caribbean regions are usually 80% Black and mulato areas in Latin America, so this is intertwined with anti-Blackness. Be careful with that stereotype please. 
Things that I’d like to see more. 
BLACK CARIBBEAN LATINXS!!! There’s a lot of cultures within us, you can write someone from the islands (PR, DR, Haiti!!!!, Cuba) or people from the Caribbean region of Latin Countries ( Like Colombia, Venezuela, Panama!!) 
Immigrant Black and half-Black Caribbean Latinx people that love their culture and try to stay close to it. 
Smart, very smart Black Latinxs that are also bubbly and happy and joyful. 
Black and half-Black Caribbean Latinx people with close relationships to our family! We all are usually very very close to our family, even family that we don’t live close to. We take time to talk to them every day. 
Musical Black Caribbean Latinx people!! In our culture music is so intertwined with who we are, I’d love to see us portrayed as loving music, and loving Black Caribbean genres. Most of us looooove music and it’s a part of our daily lives, even if we’re not singers or musicians. 
MAIN CHARACTERS!!! You know how interesting we are??? Just talk to any Black Caribbean Latinx, you’ll see what I mean. Our culture is so full of joy and magic and color and full of anecdotes that I’d love to see portrayed more. Fantasy/ Black Caribbean Latinx people??? HELL YES. 
Please prioritize non-ambiguous Black people plEASE. Enough light skin people with no black features and slightly curly hair. There’s too much of that already. 
Superstitious Black Caribbean Latinx mothers and grandmothers. It’s really cute, it’s common in our culture and it’s not harmful! Just keep in mind that your characters are HUMAN, not just one cute little trait. 
Things that I’d like to see less.
Read the bullet points in the micro-aggression/ racism section. 
Caribbean Latinx names are not the same as continental Latinx names! We have completely different culture to be honest. Here’s a cute little list that has common names. 
Love you, hit me up and follow me if you wanna hear more about my experience (for I am talking from MYY experience only, please don’t generalize everything that I say) 
Read more POC profiles here
Submit your own
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kannabot · 4 months ago
Aaaaaa hihiii can i request any of the characters reacting to their s/o who is all cutesy and feminine but is actually great with swords and decides that it'll be them(the s/o) to protect their partner? its kinda like that one scene from black butler book of atlantic! BSNSLEJJ im really sorry if you havent seen black butler and im really sorry if this didn't make sensee?? Aaa anyways thank you and have a great day!♡
Cutesy fem!s/o protecting them
Note : I understood the reference no worries- haven’t really finished Black Butler (pls I’m so lazy it’s been years) but I know what you mean and which scene you’re referencing, , ,probably. fingers crossed I don’t fuck this request up and as for the characters, I just picked my faves
Characters : Childe, Diluc, Venti, Rosaria, Zhongli, Aether x fem!Reader
Warning/s : not rlly a warning but short reader (childe) sorry tall ppl,
Song I listened to while writing this : Cupid’s Chokehold - Gym Class Heroes
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He’d chuckle at your cute face smiling up at him, it was kinda hard to take your oath to protect him from harm when your eyes barely reached past his shoulders with your short height-
Which added to your cuteness.
He can only grin down at you with your determined look not deterring him from thinking just how cute you’d look wrapped up in a bow.
“How are you gonna protect me, girlie?”
You frown at that. He’s seen your skills first hand.
“Are you doubting me now?”
“I could never.” He faked a scoff. “I very much remember our first meeting when you handed me my ass.”
You grinned proudly and he almost awed at your flushed cheeks, fighting the urge to pinch your cheeks.
“If it’s someone like you protecting me then I guess I won’t mind it too much.”
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He’d smile, it was impossible not to when you climbed onto his lap, wrapping your arms around him and grinned with a determined nod.
“From now on, I’ll protect you.”
“Shouldn’t it be the other way around?”
“What do you mean? Is there some rule where only the man can protect their partner in a relationship?”
He shook his head, affectionately squeezing your thigh that rest on his leg.
“That’s not it. You’re just too adorable that I feel the keen intent to protect you instead, love.”
You’d pout. 
“But I wanna protect you.”
He grinned at your huffed cheeks, using his free hand to lightly poke it which his gloved hand and you stifled a giggle.
“Then how about we protect each other?”
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He’d giggle hearing your declaration. 
“I’m not saying I’m invincible but you’re forgetting I’m an archon, sweetheart.”
You’d just shake your head to dismiss his words with a light pout.
“Yes but you said it yourself- you’re not invincible.”
“And you are?”
“Stop! You’re missing the point.”
He’d strum his lyre to play a short refreshing tune that mixed well with his bubbling laughter before raising a brow at you, 
spying your cute pout and he held himself back from kissing those pouting lips. He rather enjoyed teasing you sometimes.
“What’s the point then?”
“The point is I wanna protect you and you have no choice but to accept it.”
“I’m a God, aren’t I? I can do whatever I want- that includes rejecting your protection.”
You knew he was joking but in order for him to give in, you feigned offence at his words. 
You withdrew from him, looking dejected and pained before smiling bitterly.
“If you don’t need it then I can go ask Aether- maybe he’s appreciate an amazing partner like me to accompany him forever.”
You turned with a huff but was immediately pulled back by the strong wind
You landed on Venti’s lap and aside the same teasing grin displayed on his face still, his eyes were intimidating, daring you to try and get up to find Aether.
“With my gnosis missing I might have grown weak- oh my I definitely need your protection.”
You rolled your eyes.
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“But who would protect you while you’re protecting everyone else?”
You asked, your lips pouting lightly and she startled you when she dipped her head to place a kiss on your lips.
“I don’t need anyone to protect me. The point is I’m strong enough to protect everyone and myself.”
You shook your head, unwilling to accept her words. It didn’t appear fair to you, she was willing to do all the dirty work and risk her life.
“Oh I know!”
She arched her brow at you giddily perking up from your seat.
“I’ll do it. I’ll protect you!”
She was taken aback, taking a few seconds to scan your adorable face beaming at her so brightly that she had to look away for a second and adjust her sight
You showed no sign of jesting.
“Very well then. You can protect me.”
Satisfied with her answer, you turned back to your food which you had abandoned during your discussion, Rosaria had cooked you her special dish of Sweet Madame.
“Now finish your food, doll.”
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He actually laughed. No not at you- but at the mental image of your adorable self jumping into battle to protect him for it was too much for his heart to take in
He couldn’t agree more that you were a skilled warrior, holding your claymore weapon as if it were some random stick you had picked up
not minding the weight at all and swinging it effortlessly but he would rather be the one protecting you.
After all you were the mortal and he was the God?
But recognizing the determination in your eyes, he only nodded.
“I don’t see why not? You’re perfectly capable of slaying even the strongest ruin guard that resided in the abandoned parts of Liyue, darling.”
You grinned at the compliment, flashing him your ever so adorable smile that he felt his heart tug
He would absolutely hate seeing you get hurt trying to protect him but he could always provide you a shield, aiding you in battles and making sure you remained unscathed
“But I am unsure who would bother fighting a man who works at some Funeral Parlour?”
You  narrowed your eyes at him.
“Those pesky Fatuis are up to something. I just know it.”
He placed a hand on your huffed cheek and lightly caressed it with his thumb.
“Well they won’t stand a chance against you, darling.”
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“I’ll protect you while we’re on the journey to find your sister!”
Unlike the others, he was quick to nod and agree.
He had been accepting aid from everyone all this time before he met you and it came in various forms
From the adorable Xiangling who fiercely wielded her pole arm weapon, to the very unfortunate Bennett who still managed to be of great aid in battle aside his rotten luck
He had no reason not to not accept your proclamation of loyalty.
He was instead touched at the thought of you willing to use your amazing skills to help him in his journey.
“I’d be the most honoured to be protected by you.”
You’d furiously blush at this and your very determined look and pose wavered, making Paimon giggle at your flustered state
“What’s wrong?” The ever so dense Aether asked.
“You’re too adorable.” You replied, shielding your reddened cheeks.
He blinked in surprise.
“Shouldn’t I be the one saying that? You’re as red as Jueyun Chilis right now, and your cuteness somehow doubled. Right, Paimon?”
“Oh shut up before she explodes!”
Note : Didn’t include s/ o actually protecting them so  I’ll just do that in a pt2 maybe? For now it’s just s/o deciding they’re the knight in shining armour lol
END.requests are open (going through requests fast just in case I go inactive again cause of life and school)
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dollslayer · 4 months ago
Sink or Swim
Steve Rogers x Reader
Summary: After your long-term boyfriend tells you he's been in love with someone else for months you're both reeling from the fallout.
W/C: 3,525
Warnings: Implied cheating, swearing, angst
A/N: The much anticipated follow up to Fight or Flight! I was blown away and so thankful for the response, I hope that I'm able to deliver what y'all were hoping for!! I kinda wrote Steve as a shithead you wanna punch so I hope you like it lol. Please reblog/comment if you liked this!
Main Masterlist
He didn’t think anything could hurt worse than when he returned to the apartment and found every trace of you gone. Then he saw you didn’t even touch his letter. Steve spent all night agonizing over that piece of paper, over every sentence. And you didn’t even read it.
You had to read it, or at least talk to him, maybe he could find something that you forgot, an excuse to see you and make you listen.
Your necklace! You forgot to take the necklace he got you last Christmas! And that book about the history of the Bronx he got you for birthday. And then Steve looked to find another pile of gifts left behind. And then he made the connection. You left them behind because you were leaving him behind. What is he supposed to do with these things?
Steve thinks about texting you and asking if you want them back, just to see if you’d respond, just to talk to you. But he thinks better of it and puts them away in a box. He remembers the box from when you moved in, it’s got ‘Living Room - fragile’ in your handwriting scrawled across the top. You removed yourself from the apartment but it felt like you were everywhere. The box goes in the storage unit in the basement of the building where he’ll forget about it.
He doesn’t even know where you’re staying. Are you okay? He had figured that you were with Nat. She’d probably be a really good pillar of support for you. He knew you weren’t with Wanda. He knew Wanda knew.
Wanda accidentally read his thoughts when he was planning a date with his new girl, Hayley. He couldn’t get her out of his head, he might as well have been screaming it at Wanda. She had confronted him immediately, she looked heartbroken for you. Tears blinded her as she punched his chest and he could tell she was restraining herself to keep from unleashing her powers on him.
He tried very hard to calm Wanda down, letting her berate him but steeling himself so that he wasn’t absorbing any of it. He knew everything she was saying was right, he knew he had to do something about it sooner than later. Wanda’s eyes were glowing red as she invaded his personal space once again.
“You tell her, or I will. You have one week.”
The following week he watched Wanda avoid you and he listened to you complain about it to him when they got home from a debriefing. ‘Is she mad at me? What did I do? Maybe I’ll talk to her tomorrow.’ Steve convinced you to give her some space. He told you six days later. He told Wanda when you left the apartment still in your slippers with no jacket because it was the only thing he could think to do.
So maybe you were with Nat, he just wanted to know you were safe. He dialed Nat and the phone only let out half a ring before she picked up.
“You told her, didn’t you?”
Steve sputtered. His mouth slightly open as he racked his brain to figure out how she could have known.
“How did you…?”
“Do you not remember what I do for a living? I figured it out, you dumbass.”
“When?” It’s all his brain can bring himself to say.
“Two months ago. You were acting funny so I followed you. If you’re going to date other people you really shouldn’t do it in public.”
“The cafe was really small, there was hardly anyone in there” he mutters quietly, like that’s some excuse for the whole ordeal. He’s more upset that she followed him. And that she didn’t confront him. Why didn’t she?
“Why didn’t you say anything?”
“She just called me and I’ll tell her what I told you; It’s not my business. I thought you’d do the right thing and tell her but with how much she still gushed about you I figured out pretty quickly that you didn’t. But again, not my place to tell her. But it seems you just did so at least you finally did the right thing.”
“I can’t tell who’s side you’re on” Steve says insecurely, sounding like a pouting child.
“Not yours.” Ouch. “I’m gonna give both of you some space. I hope you realize what you’ve done”
But you were her friend, you didn’t do anything about it. Steve thinks bitterly, trying to shift blame for this situation onto anyone else but him for this mess.
A soft hand runs tentatively through Steve’s hair and when he leans into it seeking comfort all he feels is his own betrayal. He pulls away, removes himself from the room entirely, leaving her behind to question his actions. He loves her but he’s still upset with himself. Maybe he’s upset with her too. There’s too much going on in Steve’s head to make sense of anything but he knows he’s upset.
It’s been two weeks since Steve broke the news about him and Hayley to you. He was expecting you to yell, to throw things at him, to fight. But you didn’t even cry. Didn’t say one word. It’s been two weeks and still nothing aside from when you texted him that you were coming to pick up your things.
He wants you to cry, to scream, to tell him he’s a bastard. But it’s like you don’t even care. Like you don’t even love him. He voices all of these things to Hayley when she pokes her head in his bedroom door to check on him. She rubs his back while he speaks to console him but it’s not the same as when you do it. Her movements go rigid and he can tell she’s annoyed with him.
“Isn’t it really the best case scenario? You don’t even know if she’s that upset, maybe she’s over it too. But at least you are and we can just be together. Just like we’ve wanted,” she reminds him, “Right?”
Steve nods his head, not reassuring her, but himself. Yes, just like he wanted. He kisses her on the cheek and promises he’s over you, he’s just confused that’s all. Hayley suggests they go out to celebrate but he just wants to stay in. She gripes about him being a homebody but agrees, opening a bottle of champagne to commemorate their togetherness. The taste is bitter on his tongue but he drinks anyway. This is what he wanted.
Steve finds out you’re taking a leave of absence, a month at least. He was looking forward to seeing you at work, he didn’t know what he was going to say but he was just looking for the relief of knowing you’re okay. Then he finds out that you’re staying with Tony. He doesn’t like that one bit. You two were always a little too close for comfort and felt a lot better when you didn’t hang out as much. Now you were only 7 blocks away with someone he couldn’t stand. It was frustrating to know you were so close but you hadn’t even tried to reach out.
Work isn’t the same without you. Tony isn’t there either, which he doesn’t like. Said he needed to take time to focus on Stark Industries. Meanwhile there’s this unspoken tension on the team. Like everyone is mad at him for what he did. He knows he’s in the wrong but all of them knew and didn’t say anything. They were just as guilty. Right? They may not have cheated but they knew and they had the audacity to be mad at him about it? He’s angry, he feels like his team doesn’t trust him.
He screws up the next two missions. One of them he missed his mark and the other he compromised the team entirely. The one thing he was literally made to do and he can’t do it. He feels like he’s drowning, sinking. He needs to see you, needs the confrontation but he hurts too much to say anything to you. He tells himself you’ll come to him.
Two weeks later Steve comes home to Hayley cooking his favorite meal, he smiles at the gesture, comes up behind her at the stove and kisses her on the cheek. For a moment he gets a glimpse of everything being okay. Then she spills her red wine onto a pot holder you crocheted and he loses it. She ruined something you made. He remembers when you took up crochet when you were out of commission for a month with an injury. It was a dinky little pot holder but you were proud of it. He used it all the time and now it’s stained. Ruined.
He raises his voice when he doesn’t mean to, he’s just so angry. At her, at you, at him. Unable to express his anger he punches the table, effectively breaking it in two. Hayley leaves him that night.
“You’re clearly not over her like you said you were but I can’t handle this. You don’t want to be with her but you don’t want to be with me. You need to sort your shit out, Steve.” She spits out at him, “I’m not gonna stick around while you figure it out. You broke your promise to me.”
Steve is left in a pile of splinters in an empty apartment. He punches the table again and shakes the floors when he does. He remembers Thor just returned from Asgard, he gives him a call in search of mead. He needs an escape from what he’s done or else he doesn’t know what will happen.
It’s gotten to the point where you keep your phone off for most of the day. Texts, calls, even an Instagram DM or two. Apologies and excuses from everyone but Steve. You don’t care to hear any of them. Wanda and Nat explain themselves to you and honestly? You get it. If the roles were reversed you’re not sure what you would do. But for now you hurt. Your trust has been broken. You just don’t have it in your heart to speak with them right now.
Your therapist suggests that you maybe take a break from social media while you process this change in your life and you take it one step further and decide to delete them altogether. The Avengers PR rep begs you not to but you think it’s better for you. They can explain themselves away to whatever tabloid wants to know. You didn’t care.
The only reason you don’t turn your phone off completely is Tony. Not that he’s ever very far. He says he’s taking a small break from missions to help Pepper with something at Stark Industries but you know it’s because he wants to be there to help you through the breakup.
Honestly you’re having a lot of fun living with Tony. You get him to actually eat and sleep, you laugh at Bad TV together and you even have game night once a week where he cheats at Monopoly and you scold him. You two were picking up right where you left off as friends. You’ve never been so grateful for human connection as you are right now.
It hasn’t all been easy, of course. There were times when Tony was the one to remind you to eat something, times when he had to pick you up off the floor. Times where you broke down into him like it was that first night all over again. But Tony never judged you when you relapsed into sadness or when you missed Steve. He understood you still loved him and that you were grieving that love. He let you move at your own pace.
Grieving this love felt like a death. You had spent so much of yourself on this relationship, you had thought you were going to be married one day. You were so confident and now you spent so much time doubting yourself. Why wasn’t I enough?
Towards the end Steve had been a little distant, he was always busy at work, but he was still himself so you never picked up that anything else was going on. You’d felt stupid for not seeing it at first, but one of the first things therapy taught you is to forgive yourself. What happened isn’t your fault. And the fallout also isn’t your fault. Self forgiveness really granted you a lot of emotional freedom.
The next thing you learned in therapy is that you don’t owe anyone else forgiveness. As spiteful as it sounded it gave you a lot of comfort, gave you the allowance to feel whatever you wanted. When it came down to it you figured you probably would forgive them one day, just not any time soon. And that was okay. You just didn’t know how that would shakeout when you saw them again.
It’s a Tuesday evening when Tony finds you floating in the pool. You’re on your back with your eyes closed, just letting yourself exist in the water. You’re thinking about what to make for dinner, what movie you want to watch, the book you’ve been reading. You’re thinking about anything but the fact that your leave was over at the end of the week.
You’d spent days stressing over what to do about work. You still didn’t forgive your teammates for betraying you, but frankly you were getting really bored. Itching to get back to something. So you were happy to hear Tony’s voice echoing in the walls of the indoor pool room.
“You busy?” He asked, already knowing the answer.
You opened your eyes to find Tony standing at the edge of the pool looking at you expectantly.
“What’s up?”
“I was thinking we could talk”
You sighed and swam to the edge where he stood.
“Talk or talk?” You questioned.
“Talk” Tony exaggerated as he waved his arms dramatically.
You roll your eyes and lift yourself up out of the water and Tony hands you a towel.
When you’re both seated on some chairs you raise your eyebrows expectantly at him.
“So, I’ve been talking to Pep, and, I think maybe my break from the Avengers needs to be a little more permanent. Not forever-” he insisted, “But, maybe I’m more of an ‘in case of emergencies’ kinda guy. Stark Industries is doing a lot of work out West with renewable energy and I’ve got the place in Malibu.”
Oh. If Tony’s leaving, what does that mean for you? Where will you go? What are you going to do without a buffer from the rest of the team? You take a deep breath and immediately feel yourself start to tear up. God damn it. You swallow and nod at him to continue but refuse to meet his eye.
“What if you came with me?”
“What? What about-”
“They’ll get on without us. You don’t have to leave, of course, I just know you’re dreading going back to work with Captain Asshole and the Traitor Gang” he jokes and you can’t hold back the smile on your face. It’s true. “So, maybe you could take a bigger break from avenging, or if you wanted to, you wouldn’t even have to go back.”
You tilt your head out of curiosity at him. You want him to elaborate but you don’t. It feels like he’s reading you like a book right now and you don’t know how to feel about it.
“If you wanted, there might even be something at Stark Industries for you. I mean, with the suggestions and help you’ve been giving me on the new suit I’m impressed, I know we could put that big ol’ brain of yours to use.”
Now your eyes are stinging with tears but for an entirely different reason. You feel seen and supported, you feel cared for, which is something you’re realizing you hadn’t felt in those last months with Steve, with the team.
Maybe stepping down is the right thing to do. You’re not stepping down because you broke up with your boyfriend, you’re stepping down because it’s what’s best for you. You’re not running away from conflict, you’re just choosing to confront it differently.
It’s not like you had powers, you were just super badass, there were tons of agents who would die to fill your shoes and definitely wouldn’t be emotionally betrayed by their team probably. So why not let them?
“Tony, I… Are you sure about this?”
“I’m positive, shortstack. I wouldn’t offer it if I didn’t mean it. Plus I actually sleep more than two hours now. Maybe having you around is good for me.” He chuckled and you joined him in it.
“It’s..” you trailed off your unfinished thought, thinking a mile a minute trying to form a sentence.
“Take the rest of the week to think about it, let me know. For now though, I believe I am about to pass go and collect $200 on your ass if you don’t get to that Monopoly board before I do” He grinned and you both took off in the direction of the living room. You’re still damp from swimming but neither of you care.
To: AvengersTeam
Subject: Debriefing
I’m sending this email to call a debriefing. I will be coming in tomorrow at 9am, I’d like to speak to everyone in the conference room. There will be no discussion or questions afterwards.
Thank you.
You figured the least you could do was tell them in person, no matter how difficult that was. But Tony was going to be there. And Thor. He’d been away the entire time so he has no idea what happened to you was happening. And Bruce would be there too, he definitely hadn’t known before and when he found out there was a code green. So you had people on your side that would be there, at least.
The elevator ride up was tense, the air thick as you swallowed it. You rehearsed the words in your head over and over. You’d gone over this scenario 100 times with Tony and your therapist. You could do this. Just say it and get out.
The doors opened and you took another deep breath. Tony patted you on the back.
“You got this, shortstack.”
You open the door to the conference room and it feels like a punch in the gut. They’re all there. You’re not ready for this. You have to be ready for this. You don’t look at any of them. But you do look at Bruce and he gives you a reassuring nod, knowing what you’re about to say.
“Thank you for coming,” you start, “Firstly, I don’t forgive any of you, nor do I have to. Maybe one day but for now I’m still hurt. All of you betrayed me and whatever trust we had is broken.”
A shaky breath is inhaled. Bucky is about to cut in but you’re quick to stop him.
“I’m not finished.” Bucky sits back in his chair.
“That being said, I don’t feel like I can work with a team I don’t trust, especially when we put so much at stake. Because of this I will be stepping down from the Avengers team effective immediately.”
The silence and tension in this room could swallow you whole but you don’t let it. Remember what you planned.
“The times we did have together before all of this were great and taught me a lot. But both myself and the people of Earth deserve to have people they can count on, and right now that’s not something I can be. I won’t be talking about it with any of you, everything I said is everything that needed to be. I’m recommending agent 213 to take my place. Thank you.”
You look up at them and there’s a mixture of shock, sadness, resignation. Steve looks how you felt when he broke the news to you. Good. You turn on your heel and Tony follows you out of the room.
“Wait” one pathetic plea calls out to you. You know exactly who it is and before you can think better of it you turn around.
Steve is crying, he looks angry but more hurt than anything. You heard through the grapevine that Hayley had left him, you didn’t know why but you didn’t care either. Serves him right. You hope she was worth it. You raise one eyebrow at him.
He stutters, he wasn’t expecting you to stop and now he’s not sure what to say.
“I- Can we.. Can’t we talk about this? Don’t go, please.” He sounds truly desperate. You want to be the bigger person but you can’t help yourself.
“Fuck off, Rogers.”
You make your way to the elevator and get in. When the doors close you let one tear fall. You feel like you’ve just had a cathartic moment, you feel free. You don’t know what Malibu will hold for you but you know you’re supported, you know you’ll make it.
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bookboleynreads · 4 months ago
Cover Re-Reveal!! Hot Heir by Pippa Grant
Cover Re-Reveal!! Hot Heir by Pippa Grant
Title: Hot HeirAuthor: Pippa GrantGenre: Romantic ComedyCover Design: Lori JacksonPhoto: Wander AguiarRelease Date: August 31, 2018 BLURB  If I’d known he had dimples, I never would’ve agreed to marry him. Some people are born for parenthood.Not me.But I’m about to get it anyway, since there’s no one else who can take care of my wild child baby sister. I’m supposed to be spending my days…
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sandythereadingcafe · 5 months ago
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MY ONE NIGHT(On My Own 1) by Carrie Ann Ryan at The Reading Cafe:
‘really fun to read’
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