Edward Hopper (American, 1882-1967), Scrub Pines, 1931. Watercolor on paper, 14 x 20 in.
Ten years. Holy wow. There are so many things I want to say that I don’t even know where to begin! But, first of all, I’m truly desolate that I wasn’t able to finish this piece properly in time; this was supposed to be a full work but unfortunately paired with my graduation, a nasty cold and just an overall busy year I just totally ran out of time. I intend on finishing this properly at some point, but for now all I can offer is the line work and the character flats. I hope you enjoy it anyway!
The really sappy stuff is beneath the cut. Happy double digits, Gravity Falls; I will always love you!
My brother and I have been close our whole lives. We first watched Gravity Falls together in November of 2015. These memories are some I hold so incredibly dear to my heart for so many reasons, but mainly because it was the summer of 2019 when my parents separated, and unfortunately also when my brother was hit very hard by puberty. He suddenly wanted nothing to do with me. We rarely even spoke because more often than not it’d end in a fight that brought me to tears. He hated me, and I could not stand it. I felt so lonely, so betrayed and, more than ever before, longed for the good ol’ days to come back to me.
Eventually, my brother’s destructive behaviour came back to bite him. One day I woke up to hear from some of our mutual friends that everybody had abandoned him; every single one had dubbed him a horrible monster and refused to talk to him ever again. He was completely alone, and, despite everything, I made the decision to ask him what was wrong. For the first time in years he opened up to me. We went on a long evening drive down the highway, just listening to his favorite music and seeing where the road would take us. After this, we finally began to talk again. He’d pop into my room every night just to say hello, watch YouTube and even asked me to teach him how to draw.
The reason I’m telling you all of this is because, during the endeavour, I was often reminded of Dipper and Mabel’s plight near the end of the series. It struck a cord deeper than I had expected it to when I rewatched it during this era, and it gave me hope. Gravity Falls was the last thing we had shared together and bonded over at the time. We created together, we imagined together, we loved together. The days we spent walking around the local track on sunny summer’s days musing over fun ideas for stories and fan-comics were some of the best ones of my life. So, you can imagine how difficult it was to feel like that had all been torn from me.
Nonetheless, just like the Pines twins (both sets! Happy birthday Stan and Ford <3 <3), we forgave each other. We’re best friends again, and I am so incredibly grateful for that. I can’t imagine my life without you, little bro, and I hope we continue to take on the world together for decades to come!
Thank you, Gravity Falls. Thank you for making me laugh, making me cry, making me think, making me feel and making me create. Thank you for the nights I spent curled up on the couch with my whole family, laughing and smiling together. Thank you for making me believe in the power of a sibling bond. Thank you for all of the inspiration, motivation and artistic growth (and being responsible for the first time I was drawing humans regularly!). Thank you for helping me bond and connect with my closest friends in the entire world. It is an absolute privilege to be able to be here to celebrate an entire decade of some of the best television to ever air. I know this show will never truly leave me; how could it after all of this? One day, I’m sure I will watch it again with my children, and then again with my children’s children, and create those memories all over again. And with each line, each frame, I’m sure I will look back to these memories. Moments forever frozen in time, where my family and I were as we should be: well and truly as one.
Oh man now I’m crying lol, sorry if that was a bit incoherent I am beyond exhausted (been drawing for like eight hours straight) :’D But hey, it came from the heart!
Adios folks, I’ll hopefully see you soon with the proper iteration! And remember: “Gravity Falls is real and it will never die.” I, however, am going to die in approximately five seconds. snzzzzz
Pines and Cedars Up On Mountain South (AO3)
After drinking tea with Rong Pei in the courtyard of Yi Kun Gong, Ru Yi falls asleep and wakes to a different Rong Pei, in Kun Ning Gong.
A Legend of Ruyi and Huan Zhu Ge Ge crossover, where after dying, Ru Yi transmigrates into an alternative universe. In this universe, Ru Yi mourns Hai Lan, tries to ignore Ling Fei, makes peace with a Yong Qi who has no memory of being loved by her, teaches Han Xiang the merits of survival in the palace, grapples with the confusing conundrum that is Xiao Yan Zi, wonders if there is anything to be salvaged with Qian Long, and saves Zi Wei from nearly dying. Not necessarily in that order.
Chapter 1: A Whole New World | Chapter 2: The Many Faces of the Inner Palace | Chapter 3: Assimilating | Chapter 4: 万寿 (The Emperor’s Birthday) | Chapter 5: Among the Bending Poplars | Chapter 6: Who Lives, Who Dies | Chapter 7: Who Tells Your Story | Chapter 8: Fireworks | Chapter 9: Han Xiang | Chapter 10: The Emperor's Woman
I’m trying to write this fic in such a way that it can be read even if you are fandom-blind to either Legend of Ruyi or Huan Zhu Ge Ge. However, if you are only aware of one of the two fandoms and find there are things you want clarification on, please feel free to ask me a question in the comment. It's not a huge problem you are unaware of Huan Zhu Ge Ge, since Ru Yi goes in not knowing anything about the world as well so you will learn from her point of view. I guess going into this story, the only thing to note is that, as this is written from Ru Yi’s point of view, she will call a character “Rong Pei” but she is a very different character than Legend of Ruyi’s canonical Rong Pei. The mismatch between the name and the character is quite deliberate.
If you need a refresher of who is who
Lilac and star and bird twined with the chant of my soul,
there in the fragrant pines and the cedars dusk and dim.
Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass
Pines - Alice Brasser , 2022.
Dutch, b.1965 -
Gouache on paper , 25 x 30 cm
Lin Yen Wei (Taiwanese, b. 1987), Pine, 2021. Oil on canvas, 27 x 41 cm.