Also 28. “This is why we can’t have nice things.” and Davenport? :O I couldn't choose which one lol
28. “This is why we can’t have nice things.”
"D'you think they'll notice?" Taako asked from his place perched upon Davenport's captain chair. Davenport didn't mind too much. He rarely flew the ship sitting down.
"It's fine," Davenport said. He started to slow the Starblaster down as they reached the clearing Barry, Lup, and Lucretia should be meeting them in. Taako hummed, unconvinced, and peered out the front window. Davenport stopped the ship completely in midair and pressed the button that activated the communication system.
"Are we clear to land?" he asked into the little microphone built into the control panel.
"All clear from what I can see," Magnus's voice answered back. "Go for it, Cap."
Davenport started the Starblaster's descent, slowly lowering them to the ground. Taako stood up from the captain's chair and stretched, his spine popping audibly. Davenport winced but didn't comment on it. Finally, they reached the ground with a smooth landing and there was a hiss from somewhere below them as the legs popped up to keep them steady and the entrance opened up.
"I think they're gonna notice. Barry's deffo gonna notice." Taako said. Davenport slipped off his gloves.
"I'm a master illusionist, Taako," Davenport said. "They're not gonna notice."
"Wanna bet?" Taako asked.
"None of my shoes would fit you," Davenport said as a response. Taako followed him out of the pilot room. Merle was lounging on the couch they had picked up two cycles ago. They had only gotten halfway across the room when Magnus lead Barry, Lucretia, and Lup back in. This was the moment of truth.
"And then I punched it!" Lup was saying.
"With your hand on fire??" Magnus gasped.
"With my hand on fire," Lup said. Magnus was hanging off her every word. Barry was, too. Lucretia was glancing around the room was a critical expression.
"It was more of a fist bump, actually," Barry said. "Like, you didn't really deal any damage to it-"
"Shh," Lup said. "I killed it."
"Yeah, but not by fist bumping it?"
"What happened to this room?" Lucretia interrupted. Next to him, Taako muttered, "master illusionist my ass".
"What do you mean?" Davenport asked.
"What happened to this room?" Lucretia repeated. "It's..."
"Glimmery," Barry said, scratching his chin. "Like illusion glimmery."
"I have no idea what you're talking about," Davenport said. Magnus bit his knuckle to keep himself from laughing.
"No, it's deffo, uh, different," Lup said. She took out her wand. "How 'bout we just-"
She flicked her wand and the sparkly, glimmery look of the room faded. There was a hole in the wall between this room and the next room over (Barry's quarters, unfortunately). The hole was singed at the edges. Even more concerningly, there was a rather large burn on that corner of the floor as well, as well as a smaller dent in the floor from where Magnus had stomped part of the fire out.
It was best not to mention what Barry's room looked like right now.
"What the fuck?" Barry said. "We were gone for two hours!"
"It's a real funny story, actually," Magnus started, but Barry cut him off with,
"This is why we can't have nice things!" He walked over to the hole into his room. "Who- Taako?"
"Hey," Taako said. "I would never do that to you, Barold."
"Well it wasn't Magnus, I bet!" Barry said.
"I could totally destroy that wall if I wanted to!"
"Merle," Barry said. "Did you-"
"Don't look at me, kid," Merle said, kicking his feet up on the coffee table. "I ain't the one who knows how to build a fire machine or whatever."
"One," Davenport said. "Putting a flame thrower on the Fantasy Roomba was not a fire machine. Two, it wasn't even my idea. If we're gonna blame anyone, blame Lup."
"I wasn't even here!" Lup defended. "And it was an idea, not something to put into reality!" She paused for a moment. "Not without me here, at least."
"Why- why would you want to put a flame thrower on the Fantasy Roomba?" Barry said weakly.
"S'funny," Lup said with a shrug.
"It was very funny, in her defense," Taako said.
"I..." For once, Barry seemed at a loss for words. But he wasn't actively asking Davenport to clean up the mess, which was good. Taako's advice of playing to Barry's weak points (notably, saying Lup was involved at all) had worked very well. Davenport would have to remember that. Barry sighed, sounding very bone-weary. "I'm gonna go take a shower."
"I'll fix the hole!" Magnus offered.
"No!" Barry said. "No, you... you stay away from it. I'll fix the hole."
In Davenport's defense, the flame-throwing Fantasy Roomba had been hilarious for the two and a half minutes it lasted.
ID:[ A couple leans against the wall of a dark practice room, kissing. An older, pale chubby man in a white button down bluejeans, and crooked glasses leans against the wall. He holds a tan, slender elven woman in a red gown, his hands on her back and waist. Neither of their faces are visible, but are tilted towards each other. Her back is to the viewer, and she has one hand on his jaw and has thrown her other arm around him, still holding her violin. A piano is in the corner, and the walls are covered in absorbent tiles typically found in music studios. Light streams through a window in the door, illuminating the pair. A detail of the drawing, of the couple from the waist up, is also posted.] END ID
Pre-show over here.
(click for quality)
henlo, today i have madam director content tomorrow who knows
one-year redraw of this piece because it was my first post ever on tumblr eyyyy
Lucretia at the end of the stolen century be like:
taako calling barry a barnie in ep 62 is a direct predecessor to amber calling everyone she meets a guppy
So uhhhhhh…Taagnus amiright folks?
[ID: A colored image of Stolen Century era Taako and Magnus embracing. Taako is a dark-skinned elf with bleached blonde short curls, he is wearing an IPRE issued windbreaker. Magnus is a freckled human man with straight ginger hair, he is also wearing an IPRE issued windbreaker. He is holding Taako, who has his arms and legs wrapped around him and is visibly tearing up.]
love the idea of taako being really shy at the start of ipre
Hello, IPRE. This is Jon Hunger. I came across your community whiteboard in my free time today and it pained me greatly to find a piece you made recently calling me ugly and, I quote, “garbage”. I began to cry, because I have anxiety about my appearance. You have truly hurt an innocent 30 or 40 year old accomplished public speaking figure who wants nothing more than to act and be happy. I hope you consider your actions in the future, as I am still crying because of you. Thank you, I have stolen the light again, and goodbye.
I’m excited for stolen century Lucretia in the graphic novels because I’m excited to see how they handle her hair
Like imagine seeing her with cute braids with colors in them. I want to see her with an Afro and tons of different hairstyles. I wanna see how it changes after the judge cycle. Does she shave it all off? Does she not take care of it for the entire year? I want to see her and Lup doing each other’s hair. I want to see how Lucretia wears it at night.
There’s just so much that can be done and shown through hair and I think that would be so cool.
“Well maybe I like having you alive, ever thought about that?” and Magnus and/or Merle?
11. “Well maybe I like having you alive, ever thought about that?”
Magnus, being the big stupid oaf he was, had gotten himself injured in the five minutes they had been in this new cycle. Merle didn't even know how Magnus had managed that and he was a little on the fence about asking. Either way, there were other pressing things on his mind. For example, how Magnus had gone immediately to Merle upon getting injured. Merle knew he had been... absent for a few straight cycles now, but the way Magnus went right away to get help instead of stalling made him think something was suspicious about all this.
Magnus was tugging his shirt off so Merle could look at the injuries when he spoke. He had somehow gotten three dark bruises in the middle of his stomach already.
"So, uh," Magnus said, setting his shirt aside. Merle found his step stool and climbed up it, pushing Magnus to lay down on the bed. "How're the meetings with like, the entirety of the Hunger going?"
"Well first off," Merle said. "How in the hell did this happen?"
"You tell me about your thing first," Magnus argued, though he winced when Merle poked around the edge of one of the bruises.
"Well, I'm not really speaking to the entire Hunger, Mags, I'm just speaking to John."
Magnus rolled his eyes. Merle purposefully pressed down on one of the bruises a little harder and Magnus yelped.
"Alright! Alright, how's your meeting with John then."
"Eh," Merle said. "He's just kinda lonely, I think. We mostly talk about stuff like, uh, well him, I guess. And us. Stay there, I gotta get my bruise balm."
"And the meetings aren't very long, right?" Magnus asked, turning on his side to watch Merle dig through his drawers. Merle could not remember where he put his bruise balm for the life of him.
"They're gettin' longer!" Merle said, fishing out a stack of bandages from one drawer. "I think I'm growing on him. And y'know, he's obviously wanting to jump at any chance he gets to talk to someone. Like I said, it's real lonely in the- the wherever he is when we're not talking. Not like the Hunger has a mouth to communicate, right? It's all eyes, Magnus, just a buncha creepy eyes." Merle flicked out his fingers, trying to mimic blinking. Magnus sighed.
"So you're not actually getting anything from him, then?" he asked.
"No, I'm gettin' something!" Merle said. The bruise balm was definitely not in this drawer. He moved on to the next one. "But it's like- personal stuff. He's not the whole Hunger, he's just kinda some guy in charge of it all. An asshole, sometimes, but not the worst he could be, all things considerin'."
"Yeah, but, Merle-" Magnus groaned. When Merle glanced back at him, he was pulling at his hair in frustration. "Why, though? Like, you go in for ten minutes, you die, and then you repeat? Where does that leave you? And the rest of the crew? Barry and Lucretia have taken up healing but they're both shit at it."
"Are you sayin' my healings good now?" Merle snorted. "I really think I'm getting somewhere, Mags, you just gotta believe-"
"Well, maybe I like having you alive!" Magnus interrupted, voice tight. "Ever thought about that, Merle? Maybe we can all learn to heal a bit but I don't miss your shitty spells, I miss you. And you keep dying! Every year, it's like 'oh hey, Merle's back- no he's not, he's already dead again and we haven't even touched down!'"
Merle paused, turning back to give Magnus his full attention. Magnus curled in on himself slightly, but his jaw was set and his eyes were firey. Merle closed the drawer he was looking through.
"Magnus," Merle sighed, suddenly very much feeling his age. His actual age, cycles included. "Where'd you get those bruises from?"
Magnus hid his face in his arm and mumbled something.
"Speak up, man," Merle said, climbing up the step stool to sit on the cot with him. "I'm not a mindreader. Yet."
"Had Taako magic missile me," he muttered. "But it's a level one slot and he wasn't even looking to hurt me!"
"Mags," Merle said, rubbing his face with the palms of his hands. "You're real stupid sometimes, kid."
"Yeah, well, pot meet kettle," Magnus said.
"Yeah, that's fair," Merle allowed. "Listen, I'm not- It's not like I wanna be dying all the time! 'Cus it hurts! A lot! But I just- I feel like I'm getting somewhere with him and if it can stop the Hunger? Or at least like, make it less... angry? I feel like that's kinda worth it."
"Just take a year," Magnus pleaded, sitting up. He turned to Merle, placing two big hands on his shoulders. Merle kinda felt like he should have his shirt off, too. "We can deal with an angry Hunger every once in a while but we miss you, Merle. It's not the same without you."
Merle took a deep breath and patted Magnus's arm.
"Yeah, alright," he said, shrugging. "What John don't know can't hurt him, right?"
"Yes!" Magnus said, pumping his fists into the air. "Hell yes!" He swept Merle into a big hug. Merle choked a bit, not even trying to hug back. He tapped at Magnus's arm repeatedly until he was let go.
"Don't- don't mention it," Merle said, out of breath. "Seriously, don't, everyone's gonna think I've gone soft or somethin'. And I'm not healin' those bruises! You did that to yourself, you live with it, man."
"That's- that's fine!" Magnus said, practically vibrating with excitement. "I'm gonna go tell Dav!"
He was gone before Merle could get another word out and he left his shirt on the cot. Merle rolled his shoulders, trying to get his breath back completely, and went back down the step stool. He really needed to find his bruise balm before they needed it for real.
ID: [A sketchy purple and orange tones drawing of a couple sitting on the ground in a patch of daisies. A pale, chubby man in jeans and light shirt with graying hair sits facing away from the viewer, and a tan elven woman with freckles and dark, curly hair in a pale dress kneels in front of him, leaning forward with her hand on his knee to kiss his forehead. They both wear white and yellow daisies with green stems tied into a chain.] END ID
dont talk to me, the finale of the TAZ Stolen Century and Lucretia’s Theme got to me yet again
Fandom: The Adventure Zone - Balance
Magnus blushes and he looks at Taako with stars in his eyes. He looks at Taako the way Barry probably looks at Lup. And Barry realizes how fucking stupid he’s been.
[a Stolen Century story - Barry thinks Magnus is flirting with Lup. He's wrong.]
posted in full under the break but you can find me on A03!!
Barry Bluejeans has a crush on Lup the moment he sees her on his first day with the I.P.R.E., but he falls completely and permanently in love with her around Cycle 10.
He speaks the mongoose language with her and Taako like they’re a secret club, and her soft, mischievous smile makes his heart flutter. Barry and Lup combine their expertise of science and arcana, respectively, staying up late into the night drawing diagrams on the Starblaster’s wall. She tells him about her childhood, about how she views the world. She’s vulgar, bold, impulsive, but also incredibly soft and sweet. She remembers what he likes and doesn't like to eat. They play fetch together in Puppy Town and that’s the first time Barry imagines her as his wife. He tells his brain to slow the fuck down; they’ve only known each other for a decade.
When Taako dies for his first time in Cycle 12, Lup prefers to spend nights with Barry in his lab, curled up in his desk chair. Barry gladly provides his company and cozy blankets to her in solace, and she barely leaves his side that year. It’s nice to spend so much time with her, but it also hurts him to see her so sad and trying so hard to hide it. When Taako materializes next to her on the deck as they speed away from another consumed world, she hugs her twin for at least two full minutes, and Barry resolves to do his best to protect her…and protect her heart.
Barry thinks he might have a chance. After all, they are a crew of seven, and one of them is her brother. He figures that Lup might want him, even if it’s just for a night (and although he wants more with her, so much more, he would take anything she offers). But it seems he’s not the only one carrying a flame for Lup.
Magnus Burnsides is a huge, handsome, kind young man who has never half-assed anything in his life. So, when he begins to flirt with Lup it’s pretty obvious. He’s constantly showing off, doing ridiculous and dangerous things to impress her. He attempts to learn more about elf culture and magic, talking animatedly to Lup and Taako while they cook supper. He’s courteous, charming, and brave in ways that Barry could never mold himself.
Magnus also notices how Taako’s death affected his sister, and he seems to make the same resolution as Barry. From that day forward, Magnus always has Taako’s back, even going so far as to put himself in danger to protect the wizard. In Cycle 16, Taako is retrieving the Light of Creation and sets off a trap. Before Barry can even react, Magnus leaps forward and pushes the elf out of the way. Magnus is impaled by six spears. When the fighter appears on the Starblaster with his signature black eye months later, Taako punches him hard in the arm. “Don’t do that again, you big idiot!” There's a stone in Barry's stomach as Lup kisses Magnus on the cheek and quietly thanks him.
Compared to Magnus, Barry feels small and boring and incapable.
It’s not even possible to hate Magnus, though, because he’s so damn hospitable. Instead, Barry resigns himself to the fact that Lup will likely choose the fighter over him. He enjoys her company, tries to keep everyone out of trouble, and finds contentment in this seemingly endless time with his new family.
The Beach World on Cycle 21 is a welcome reprieve. They find the light very early and everyone just relaxes for once. Even Merle enjoys himself as he recovers in the med bay; the others visit him often and begrudgingly help him work on his book of poetry. Davenport practices self-care, Lucretia gets lost in her art, and Taako learns how to surf. But things aren’t too leisurely because Magnus decides he’s going to “train” them to be ready for surprise attacks.
Barry is sitting on the beach next to Lup one hot morning. She’s lying on her back on their beach blanket with a large, floppy hat covering her eyes. She’s resting her arms under her head, telling Barry about a festival her aunt took her to when she was a kid. Barry is trying very hard not to be completely distracted by the sight of her armpit hair, her stylish bathing suit, and her beautiful, brown skin shining in the sun. Barry, in contrast, is sitting under a huge umbrella, wearing a white T-shirt, jean shorts, and a thick layer of sunscreen.
Suddenly, a huge shadow covers the sun and a loud voice shouts, “Magnus!”
Barry yelps and drops his glass of lemonade on the blanket. Magnus sinks to his knees in the sand so he’s eye-to-eye with the scientist. “You gotta be ready, Bluejeans. Anywhere, anytime.” He smiles over Barry’s shoulder. “I didn’t get you at all, did I?”
Lup has lifted up her hat a little to look at them, but her relaxed position is unchanged, unbothered. She smirks, “You’re going to have to do better than that, Burnsides.”
Magnus winks. “Challenge accepted.” Barry feels like a jellyfish blob on the sand between them.
And then Magnus takes off his shirt.
It takes all of Barry’s self-control not to throw himself into the ocean and let himself drown. Magnus has these ridiculous broad shoulders, an even patch of hair across his chest, and his stomach protrudes over his waistband only slightly in that sexy way. His skin is browned and freckled from long days in the sun and his ridiculous biceps flex as he throws his shirt on the blanket next to them. Barry, in contrast, is a pale potato of a man.
He’s ready to get up and leave them to their flirting when Magnus speaks up. “Well, see ya later!”
Magnus hands Barry his now empty lemonade glass and then stands up, brushing sand off of his hairy legs. He sprints across the beach until he’s met with the resistance of the water, making a huge splash. “Hey! Taako!”
Caught up in conversation with Lup, Barry had forgotten about the wizard. Taako is sitting on his surfboard, floating on large but gentle waves about thirty feet away from shore. He’s retying his long blonde hair up into a messy bun. “Hey, big guy. What’s crackin?”
“Just doing some training, you know?”
“Yeah, you got Barry good.”
“How’s surfing today?”
“It’s going off. I’ve only been in the soup a few times but that was early in the morning. Dawn patrol, am I right?”
Magnus laughs. “Yeah, for sure.” Taako has been almost creating his own language at this point.
Beside Barry, Lup snorts. “What the fuck does that even mean?” she says. “Magnus shouldn’t encourage him like that but, eh, you know how he is with Taako.”
“How he –” Barry looks back over at the fighter and it’s like a crisp breath of air enters his lungs. Magnus has sat himself on the sand with his feet in the water. He rests his chin on his hand and watches Taako prepare to carve another wave. Magnus cheers when the wizard stands on the board and laughs when Taako falls into the water. Taako’s long hair is out of its bounds again, cascading over his bare, dark shoulders. As he climbs onto his surfboard, he flips Magnus off. Magnus blushes.
Magnus blushes and he looks at Taako with stars in his eyes. He looks at Taako the way Barry probably looks at Lup. And Barry realizes how fucking stupid he’s been.
Magnus hasn’t been flirting with Lup. Barry has only seen him flirt when they’re both with Lup and Lup is with Taako. And Barry was so immersed in his own insecurity that he didn’t stop to actually observe what was going on around him. Some scientist he is.
At the end of the day, Barry watches Magnus offer to carry Taako’s surfboard back to the cabin. Taako, forever dramatic, convinces Magnus to carry him back as well. It doesn’t take much convincing. Barry looks at Magnus’s pleased and flustered expression with Taako latched onto his back, complaining, and Barry internally ridicules himself for being so dense.
A few days later, Barry asks Taako to teach him to swim. They work on it every morning for a few weeks. It’s brutal in the beginning – Barry flounders whenever he tries to go horizontal and Taako has a tendency to point and laugh rather than help. But they both get better at it and soon they have an amicable and productive routine. Barry goes from indiscriminately splashing to a solid doggy paddle to an almost front crawl. And Taako claps and coos at him like a proud mother.
On the last day of their morning swimming lessons, Barry thanks him and gets up the courage to have an honest discussion. “There have been times where I haven’t been able to hang out with everybody because y’all go swimming and there are times where there’s people I, like, you know, want to hang out with and I just haven’t been able to do it and that’s not a good look and it makes me look like a big nerd and I um… It’s just that— I just, like— I don’t know. It’s… Never mind, it’s stupid. Thanks for teaching me how to swim.”
“Who are you afraid of looking silly in front of?” Taako asks. They’re both standing waist-deep in the water and Barry tries to make his anxiety dissolve. Taako’s approval means the absolute world in this situation.
“I look up to Lup a lot…” he admits.
And Taako is graciously chill. He places his hand on the scientists’ shoulder comfortingly and speaks with rare seriousness. “Barry, you’re locked in and this wave’s crashing all around you, my man, and I— I don’t begrudge you anything. You know, we’ve lost a lot, uh, and there’s a lot more we might lose...but the one thing we do have is the thing that people in love rarely ever have enough of – and it’s time.” This is a side to Taako that he doesn’t show often, someone genuine and wise and openly affectionate.
The wizard’s words echo in his head often – “You got all the time in the world, my man.”
Barry is feeling relieved and grateful as he walks from the beach that day with his sunhat on. Lup will tease him about his sunburn but it will be worth it to be able to swim with her. As he reaches the part of the beach where sand transforms into foliage, something stops him in his trek – the sight of a hulking figure sitting on a rock. It’s Magnus. “Is this another training thing?” Barry asks cautiously as he approaches.
Magnus doesn’t look up. He seems dejected. “No, it’s not. I’m just thinking.”
“Um,” Barry fidgets with the string on his swim trunks. “You alright? What’s going on?”
“I dunno, you tell me, Barry!” Magnus says, gesticulating with his large hands. “What’s going on with these morning swimming sessions?”
Magnus looks disappointed and self-conscious; a combination Barry is very familiar with. He has to remind himself to close his mouth.
Magnus Burnsides is jealous of Barry Bluejeans.
Barry begins to laugh. This just makes Magnus’s cheeks turn red and his eyebrows furrow even more. “Fine, okay, you don’t need to –”
“No, no,” Barry interrupts, approaching the fighter. He places his hand on Magnus’s huge bicep. “Magnus, I don’t know how to - … Okay. You don’t need to worry about me.”
“I’m not worried. You’re a good guy. It’s fine. I just thought that maybe…” Magnus shakes his head, and his expression clears. “I asked him if he could teach me to surf and he said he was too busy teaching you to swim so I guess I was just disappointed because I really wanted to…learn how to surf.”
“Magnus. Taako doesn’t want to…swim with me. And I only asked Taako to teach me because I wanted to swim with Lup.” Magnus looks up at him with hopeful dark eyes. “I really want to swim with Lup. I think I want to swim with Lup for the rest of my life.” Barry chuckles. “For a long time, I thought you wanted to swim with Lup!”
Magnus lets out a startled laugh of his own. “No, I… I want to, uh, swim with Taako. But I’m not sure he wants to swim with me.”
“Well, he doesn’t want to swim with old Barry, that’s for sure.” Barry shrugs. “I can ask Lup, maybe? She’ll know.”
Magnus stands up from the rock. His shoulders are relaxed now. “No, it’s okay. I think he needs more time. I’ll ask him myself one day.”
The Beach World is a gift they didn’t know they needed. They grow closer as a family. Lucretia commemorates it through portraiture. Lup and Taako continue to be firecrackers, burning bright, loud, and dangerous. And Barry and Magnus continue to stare with stars in their eyes.
Merle, Lucretia, and Davenport make bets.
In Cycle 25, Merle wins.
“I see seven birds, migrating north,” - 12 Years/7 Bird (Emma Tyler Kantt)
TL;DR I love luce very, very much
"Kiss my ass, you sanctimonious bastard" Go. Off. Merle.
I was meaning to draw something like this for a while and I am really happy with how it turned out!
taako and barry besties via lup’s mullet agenda