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#two chapters in one day
a-witch-in-endor · a year ago
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Chapters: 2/10 Fandom: Avatar: The Last Airbender Rating: Teen And Up Audiences Warnings: Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings Relationships: Zuko & The Gaang, Ozai & Zuko (Avatar), Sokka/Zuko (Avatar) Characters: The Gaang (Avatar), Zuko (Avatar), Iroh (Avatar), Ozai (Avatar), Azula (Avatar), Agni (Avatar) Additional Tags: ghost story, Haunting, Zuko (Avatar) Needs a Hug, reminder: author doesn't write depressing endings Summary:
Ozai's son won't stop screaming.
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lostandundead · a year ago
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Chapter 6: Midnight Talks
*The day before the invasion
Jester left her room silently, her cumbersome hat left behind to minimize the noise she made. As she crept down the hallway towards the balcony, she couldn’t help but smile. Everything was going as planned and there wasn’t a single issue or hold up. If things continued the way they were going, she’d have control over both worlds in a matter of months, maybe even weeks. She smiled slightly at the thought and continued on. Eventually, the balcony railing came into view along with the night sky. It was a myriad of cool neon colors that swirled about in a whirlwind of light.
The stars glimmered like polished gems surrounding the glowing moon like a halo. She always loved this view, it was a reminder that the world can still be beautiful despite its flaws. Fortunately, once her plan is complete, the world will be all beautiful. She smiled at the thought, glad that there was still some hope for this miserable world.
“Enjoying the view?”
Jester smiled, “That I am. It’s always been a comforting sight for me.”
Pascal walked up to the railing and leaned up against it, “Can’t blame you, it’s definitely pretty.”
They stood in silence for a while, just admiring the swirling colors. But eventually, Pascal broke the silence.
“So,” She began, “I’m assuming you didn’t call me here just to look at the stars.”
Jester nodded, “Yes, I wanted to talk with you about a recent… Development.”
“Who’s stepping out of line this time?”
“No one.” She hesitated, “Well, no one yet.”
“And the ‘yet’ part is what you wanted to talk with me about, correct?”
“You’re on a roll tonight.” Jester turned to her general, “I’ve noticed one of our generals seems a bit unenthused with our mission. And judging by their relationship with the fallen prince, they may become a problem if they find out what really happened.”
“Oh good, I’ve wanted to pound that pile of bolts to a pulp for a long while now.”
“No, that’s too obvious. We need a sort of failsafe for if they do defect. Besides, you know they can be a formidable ally and even more dangerous foe. It’s best to keep them on our side until the last second.”
Pascal gave her a confused look, “And how do you plan to do that?”
Jester smiled, “I’ve got a couple ideas.”
Pascal returned the smile, “Well, if it’s your idea then I’m sure it’ll help us win in the end.”
“You flatter me.”
They once again settled into peaceful silence, surprisingly calm considering their conversation.
“We should go back to bed before someone sees us and starts asking questions.” Pascal said softly.
“Probably.” Jester returned, just as quiet.
In the end, the two disregarded their own advice and stayed on the balcony until they couldn’t stay awake any longer.
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isinkwiththeship · a year ago
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Chapters: 2/? Fandom: Life with Derek Rating: General Audiences Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply Relationships: Casey McDonald/Derek Venturi Characters: Derek Venturi, Casey McDonald Additional Tags: Twitter Fic Summary:
The evolution of Derek and Casey's relationship as seen through the lens of one Psychology Grad Student live-tweeting her observations. Let the shipping begin.
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rosekard · 3 years ago
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Chapters: 7/? Fandom: Bendy and the Ink Machine Rating: Not Rated Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply Relationships: Joey Drew/Henry Stein, Henry Stein/Linda Stein, Lacie Benton/Bertrum Piedmont, Sammy Lawrence/Norman Polk Characters: Joey Drew, Henry Stein, Linda Stein, Original Bendy and the Ink Machine Character(s), Bertrum Piedmont, Sammy Lawrence, Lacie Benton, Wally Franks, Susie Campbell, Allison Pendle Additional Tags: Joey Drew Studios, One-Sided Attraction, Minor Character Death, Minor Violence, Minor Injuries, Minor Original Character(s) Summary:
Joey Drew,as we know, owned Joey Drew Studios. Well, why don't we take a look at the rest of his life, before Henry became trapped in that stupid loop. We will see what happened to him, leading him to make the choices he made; both good and bad.
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overthinkingkdrama · 3 years ago
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Old Souls
{A Scarlet Heart: Ryeo fan fiction}
Set immediately after the end of episode 20.
Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Jin Woo froze, momentarily forgetting the storm around them. He turned back and looked at her over his shoulder and in his moment of hesitation she closed the gap between them.
“I’m right aren’t I?”
“So what? It doesn’t change anything.”
“How can you say that?”
“I’ve already made up my mind.”
“You weren’t even going to tell me, were you?”
Jin Woo tried to keep his face impassive, though every word was a twist of the knife. “I thought it would make it easier.”
“Easier for who? For you?”
“No, I just…I thought if you had to resent someone, better it was just me. Just his lookalike, a fool who knew nothing.”
“Is that all you take me for? Did you still think that was all you were to me? A substitute? You haven’t understood me at all.” Her voice trembled, “It wasn’t like that.”
“It doesn’t matter.” He said, “All that matters is I don’t want to be with you anymore.”
“Of course it matters. I have the right to hear the truth from you.”
“What exactly do you expect me to say?”
“Just give me the real reason. Don’t feed me a line about not seeing a future together.” She was shouting over the wind, “You should have just been honest with me from the start!”
“No you! You should have told me what I was before—” He raised his voice to match hers for the first time, “When you met me that day, you shouldn’t have hung onto me. You should have run the other direction. If I had known then what meeting you meant…I would never have approached you in the first place.”
With night starting to close in, the sky opened up at last. Rain began to fall in driving sheets, soaking them through in seconds. He turned again to go, but she caught hold of his sleeve and held him back.
“Don’t say you regret meeting me. You don’t mean that.”
He fought down his revulsion at his own words, pulling his arm away from her, “I’m sorry, but I do.”
For the first time that fierce look in her eyes wavered and her expression began to crumble. Dammed up tears spilled over, running like the rain, freely down her face. Her tears were more terrible than her anger had been, because he couldn’t even reach for her, to comfort her.
He couldn’t keep looking at her, and so he fled again. He made it ten more paces up the beach when his vision turned white, blinded by a flash of lightning. The air around him fizzed with electricity, making the hairs on his arms and the back of his neck stand on end. Almost at the same instant as the flash, he was deafened by a clap of thunder like a grenade going off. He ducked instinctively, throwing his arms over his head. When he recovered he looked back, and Ha Jin was on the ground.
A moment of primal fear gripped his heart.
“Ha Jin-ah!” He quite nearly flew to her side, kneeling next to her. “Gwaenchanha?”
To his relief she was awake, apparently unharmed. In her fright she must have dropped to the sand.
“Let’s get under cover. Quickly.”
Without thinking he grabbed hold of her hand and together they ran. He held up one arm to shield his eyes from the rain, looking around for somewhere to hide. Somewhere close by, closer than the pension. His gaze fell on a derelict old boathouse. It wouldn’t be comfortable, but it had four walls and roof.
“Come on.” He wrapped an arm around Ha Jin as they continued to run over uneven ground, holding her up when she stumbled. After a few moments he managed to force the door open wide enough for the two of them to slip inside and wrestle against the wind to shut it again.
The space was claustrophobic and the air stale. Jin Woo blinked, still wiping water away from his eyes. It was more a shed than a boathouse, stacked wall to wall with disused netting, rotting ropes, and yard after yard of old canvas. There was just enough space for the two of them to stand, facing one another. The only light came from the cracks along the edges of the door, and even that was quickly dying.
They stood in silence, listening to the sounds of the storm now raging outside and their own heavy breathing.
After a few moments Jin Woo started. “When the storm subsides we’ll—”
But Ha Jin cut him off, “I could never accept it,” She said, “No matter how many letters I sent without reply. No matter how many days passed without word of you…I didn’t let myself believe it. That you could really hate me.”
“Is that what you think this is about?”
“However far away you were, even though we parted so badly, I kept telling myself we were still in each other’s hearts.”
“Do you believe that? That Wang So died hating you?”
“You remember everything, but say we still can’t be together. Could there be another reason?”
“Would we have gone through all of this if he hated you? Would I be standing here now and would I—he, have fought so desperately to reach for you if he—if I had hated you?”
Jin Woo was losing track of his pronouns again. It wasn’t always easy. The memories of himself, of his past life, where he had lived as King Gwangjong, they mingled with those of his present. Sometimes the two bled together. He wasn’t Wang So. His experiences, his perspective, they had changed him. But he wasn’t exactly Jin Woo anymore either. Was he something in between? Or someone else entirely? He was still trying to figure that out.
“Wang So loved you, Ha Jin.” He said, “No. It went beyond that. You were an obsession for him. Because no matter how he grasped at you, he could never have you. Not in the way he wanted. Even when he thought he hated you, his hate was still a part of his love. And even that pitiful hate died with you.” Wang So’s grief overwhelmed him. It was too vast, too old, Jin Woo’s mind could not contain the breadth of it. Every time he thought he could comprehend it, it slipped away from him again, revealing new depths Jin Woo had never imagined. Against his own judgment he reached out toward Ha Jin. Taking her by the arms, he felt the wet fabric of her blouse where it clung to her skin. “You were everything. You were the only thing…and when you went away it was like all the light went out of the world.”
“Why then?” Her face was close enough he could feel her breath on his skin. Unconsciously, he’d begun to draw her closer, but he caught himself this time, dropping his hands to his sides and pulling back.
“Because I hate him.” His voice cracked as he spoke, “He…ruined…you. He ruined everything. He locked you up in that miserable place with him because he couldn’t stand the thought of being alone. He bound your wings and broke your spirit. And when he’d taken everything he could take from you he cast you out, to sicken and fade away, waiting for him. That’s why. I can’t let him do it again. I despise him.”
“Don’t say that. That isn’t what happened.”
“He’s a monster, Ha Jin.”
“Don’t talk about him like you know, when you haven’t even tried to understand him.”
“I will never understand him. I can’t. But you kept on trying too, didn’t you? However undeserving he was you gave him your empathy and your forgiveness. You would do so even now, because that’s the kind of person you are, Ha Jin. That’s why people wound and betray you. But I’m not going to let you this time.”
“He wasn’t only the way you said. To me he was—he was—” Ha Jin stammered her protests, but Jin Woo didn’t want to hear her defending Wang So.
He spoke over her, “Ji Mong talked about self-perpetuating karma. The same fates playing themselves out again and again over different lifetimes. I’ve always been making the same choices, the same mistakes. In my greed clinging onto you, giving into my ambition. Trapping the two of us in this cycle of blood and pain. But you don’t deserve to be dragged down with me. This tragedy is one of my own design. For me this is justice, but not for you. You deserve to be happy, to be free. While I…I deserve to lose you. I was warned a long time ago that if I tried to force an ill-fated love, against the will of Heaven, it would mean disaster. This has to end. I should be the one to end it.”
When Jin Woo had finished speaking, there was no immediate answer. Night had fallen as they spoke and the gale only made it darker. They stood there together in the boathouse as they started to shiver. Several strikes of lightning flashed outside, briefly lighting the room around them. Jin Woo tried to get a look at Ha Jin’s face. To his surprise he saw she looked calm, almost serene now. When her voice came back to him he could tell something had changed.
“Perhaps…” She said, “Perhaps you’re right. Perhaps the stars are set against us.” They always have been, he thought, why should now be any different? “I understand what you’re thinking. You’re trying to spare me pain in the future. I see that now. But I’m here, standing in front of you, telling you that I won’t be happier without you. I won’t be okay. Walk away from me if you must, but know it won’t end there. Even if we become like strangers, you’re someone I could never forget. No matter what name you go by, what world you fly to, I will find you and I will love you again.”
He felt more than saw her shift closer to him, sensing the warmth of her very near though not touching. He tried to back away further, but there was no more room. His heel butted up against a coil of rope, nearly throwing him off balance.
“But then again,” She said, and her voice was soft, almost a whisper, “Perhaps you’re wrong. Perhaps the fact that we’ve met like this, in this place, means that we’ve both suffered enough. Isn’t a thousand years of loneliness enough punishment for anyone? Maybe it means we’re allowed to try again, to love each other with all our hearts. Maybe it’s not a cycle at all. Maybe it’s something like redemption.”
“We can’t know that. It’s not a chance I’m willing to take.”
“Well, I am. Haven’t I lost as much as you did? I understand the risks too. But you don’t know Heaven’s will any more than I do. Is that a reason we shouldn’t try?”
“I wish I had your confidence but I don’t trust myself. What if I hurt you again?”
“You know, there’s something I learned from King Taejo. Your father. He said life was far too brief. He also told me that I should never let the fear of tomorrow steal happiness from today.” As she said this he felt her reach for him, wrapping her arms around his neck and pulling his mouth down to hers. His entire body stiffened, trying to hold himself back, but as the kiss went on he remembered something new. Beyond that hint of coffee, the sweetness of her lip gloss, he remembered the taste that only she had. The one that had lingered in his mouth for days after their first kiss. How the memory of that flavor had tried to drive him crazy long after that.
God, how he had wanted her. He could feel his hands beginning to tremble with desire as he wound her rain soaked hair though his fingers. Centuries of unfulfilled longing finally finding its object. The intensity of it scared him.
This feeling scared him.
Enough that he finally managed to push her away.
“Ha Jin-ah…please.” His voice was rough and uneven, “Don’t hang onto me. I can’t…”
“Why can’t you?”
“What if I change? What if I ruin everything again? What if I…break you? I’ve been carrying around my past like a bad omen. What if when it finally catches up with me, it falls on you too?”
“This is my choice to make.”
“How can I let you go through all of that again?”
“What makes you think it’s the same situation? Things are different now. Back then I was never once allowed to have what I wanted. Whatever I reached for was snatched away. Happiness, freedom, love…they were all taken from me. I had to watch the ones I loved fight and die around me. I had to watch others sacrifice themselves for me. That was the kind of world we lived in. Even though I knew the future and tried to change it, I couldn’t protect what I wanted. And even you. You used to tell me I wasn’t allowed to leave you, I wasn’t allowed to die without your permission. But we parted and I died. Neither of us could stop it. But we’re not in the palace anymore. And I’m going to fight for what I want.”
Jin Woo floundered for the words he needed, his defenses were abandoning him now, “I don’t know when or how, but things will fall apart again. Like they always do. I’ll break your heart or I’ll make you hate me. How could I ever make that up to you? How can I dare to love you after everything I did?”
“I thought you remembered everything,” She said, “Why does it seem like you only remember the cruelty and the pain? Where did the beauty go? The time you ignored propriety and carried me on your back because my knee was aching. When you stood by my side for hours in the rain against your father’s command. The day you drank poison to protect me. And the way those hands, which they trained for violence, became impossibly soft when they held me. Do you really not remember?”
“I’ve forgotten all the good moments, Ha Jin. I only remember is the way it ended.”
“Then, my darling,” She wrapped her arms around him again, pressing her head against his chest, “Let me remind you.”
Jin Woo could feel his resolve beginning to evaporate. The longer she held him, he knew, the harder it would be to let her go. “Even so…” He said, “I can’t stop thinking about it. How you died. How you waited. How I read your letter too late. I can’t…I don’t think I can forgive myself.”
“I forgave you a long time ago. I do so freely.”
“I…I hate myself.”
“But I love you. I’ll help teach you how.” She held him even tighter. “Did you hear me? I said I love you. Past, present and future. Whatever name you have, whatever world you fly to, whatever past lives we share. In pieces and altogether. I love you. I’m sorry it took me so long to say it.”
“Why? Why love me?”
Without letting him go she drew her head back, looking up into his face. He could just barely make out the storm lights in her large dark eyes. “Because you’re mine. My person.” And she kissed him again.
Jin Woo allowed himself to surrender to the softness of the kiss. Folding her into his arms again, finally allowing himself to hold her back. She had declared him hers and who was he to argue? Surrender was sweet.
He was unsure of how long they remained like that, holding on to each other. The storm winds still howled outside, not abating. He only spoke when he felt Ha Jin shivering.
“What was that? Are your teeth chattering?”
“I’m cold.”
“Do you have that jacket I brought you?”
She shrugged, “I think I lost it when we were running.”
He didn’t know why but he found himself laughing. They disentangled briefly and Jin Woo pulled out a raggedy old tarp for them to sit on, covering the chilly concrete floor with it. He sat down, nestling into a pile of nets that smelled like mildew and bad fish, but at least it was mildly more comfortable than standing. “Come here,” He said. He reached for Ha Jin and pulled her down into his lap, wrapping his arms around her, gently chafing her back and arms to warm them until the shivering stopped.
“Do you think we’ll have to stay here all night?”
“I don’t think it’s stopping any time soon. We should wait until the thunder stops and make a run for it.”
“I don’t want to run anymore.” She whined.
“Well I don’t want you to catch pneumonia, and we could both use some dry clothes.”
She didn’t protest more, resting her head on his shoulder. He listened to her breathing grow more even, feeling her chest rise and fall as she began to doze like that, completely spent. Despite what he had said, Jin Woo could have stayed like that all night. Even as his back began to ache and his legs fell asleep, he was so content. Peaceful, for the first time since this whole mess started. At unity with himself.
This won’t last forever, he realized. Though the thought didn’t trouble him as it should have. There was nothing he could do to change or run from it. There would be times, perhaps soon, when he didn’t feel this certain. When he would begin to feel afraid and try to push her away. He knew that about himself. This was going to be a daily struggle. To accept her love, to feel himself deserving of it. It wouldn’t be easy to stay this brave. They were both complex beings, a little of light and a little of darkness. Just to live, just to love someone with the whole of himself was uncharted territory. But he found himself thinking, for the first time, that that was okay. Because he didn’t want to run anymore.
This is the kind of thing other couples worry about too, he thought. It’s normal. For some reason that thought delighted him.
It was another hour or more before Jin Woo decided it was safe to venture out. It was still raining when they left and what little drying their clothes had managed in the meantime was rendered irrelevant by the time they made it back to their room. The two of them helped each other out of their wet clothes and warmed up their bodies in the shower. When the hot water ran out they buried themselves beneath the blankets on the bed, not bothering to dry their hair or put on those dry clothes they’d been trying to get back to.
Jin Woo should have been sore and exhausted, but those things seemed to vanish when she touched him, setting his heart pounding against his chest. He fought sleep, not wanting to miss an instant of this. Of course they’d had each other many times before, in a dozen different ways both here and in Goryeo. Jin Woo couldn’t say that this time everything was new. Rather it was as though each motion, each familiar sensation connected to a thousand long lost associations. There was no unspoken desire too secret, no door that remained locked between them. Instead, they had never been freer nor more shameless in the enjoyment of one another.
When sleep did come, it crept up on them like a thief, finding them still tangled up in each other. The last thought that passed through Jin Woo’s fast fading consciousness was that they may well still be barreling headlong toward a bad ending, flouting the gods and the stars, but he couldn’t care. Even if that was so, life was far too short to try to live without this woman. It was better, far better, to march toward calamity at her side than to face it alone.
When Ha Jin woke first to the patter of light island rain still falling outside, she was wrapped in Jin Woo’s arms. She stayed as perfectly still as she could, enjoying his warmth all around her, the smell of his skin. She felt so safe there, she didn’t want to leave. But even though she closed her eyes, sleep remained elusive.
Carefully she started to extricate herself from him, moving slowly so as not to wake him up. When she managed to get a little space between them she climbed out of bed, stubbing her toe in the dark as she searched for her luggage. She settled for Jin Woo’s instead and throwing on one of his t-shirts before slipping back into bed. She remained a little apart from him this time, watching him sleep as the sun rose and light slowly filtered in from outside.
Not so long ago she remembered waking in Jin Woo’s bed like this and being frightened by the smoothness of his skin. The lack of scars or visible traces of the 4th prince’s history. Now she thought it had been an illusion. Though she couldn’t see them, the mental scars they had taken from Goryeo were still very much with them. She wondered how much longer those would take to fade, if they ever would.
Absently she began to trace with her fingertips the places where those scars had been. The wound So had taken in his shoulder from that arrow, which had never healed quite right, always remaining puckered and red. The slash marks on his chest, she’d never been sure if they were from the claws of beasts or the blades of men. She’d never had the will to ask him. And then the one that had given him the most pain, the scar on his face left on him by his mother. She knew the shape of it by heart. She began to draw it across the bridge of his nose and down his cheek with her index finger. She was happy he would never have to look at it again. It’s a relief, she thought.
Her touch disturbed him and he rolled away from her in his sleep.
Staring in the half-light at his back and broad shoulders, Ha Jin felt suddenly, horribly isolated and alone.
There’s no reason, she thought, no reason I should be anything but happy. Why do I feel so empty instead?
Ha Jin couldn’t stay in bed any longer, so she got up and walked toward the sliding door onto the porch and opened it a hand’s breadth, looking out at the sea. The sky was beginning to brighten and the clouds of last night’s storm were being swept away, but as she watched the surf rolling in, she was struck with another pang of unutterable emptiness and she was hard pressed not to cry.
What the hell is wrong with me?
She heard a creak of bed-springs as Jin Woo got up, and though she didn’t look over her shoulder she felt him come up behind her, wrapping her up with him in a blanket from the bed and resting his chin on the top of her head.
“Why are you out of bed?” He said groggily, kissing her hair.
“I couldn’t sleep.”
“Who says we have to sleep?” He said, chuckling softly. But when she didn’t reply he remained quiet, holding her like that for a long time while they watched the sky slowly change colors.
“Well, if you’re not going to come back to bed, how about we go for a walk before the beach fills with people?” She agreed to this, and they finally dressed. Despairing of untangling her hair without considerable effort, she pulled it back into scarf, throwing on a sweater over a long sundress and not bothering with any makeup.
Her feet and legs were still sore from hours of unaccustomed walking the day before, but it felt better to be doing something than to remain anxiously in their room.
“Can I hold your hand?” Jin Woo asked, strangely bashful by daylight considering everything they’d done the night before.
She held her hand out and he took it. Jin Woo was positively beaming as they wound their leisurely way along the shoreline. Ha Jin didn’t want to do anything to dampen his spirits, trying to hide her strange mood beneath a false smile. Walking side by side like this, the hollow feeling in her heart not only lingered but seemed to grow. Something was missing, incomplete.
“You know, I always wanted to bring you somewhere like this again. I never had the chance, though.” He said, grinning, “This is so…I don’t know…domestic. Going for a walk on the beach. Like what normal couples do.”
“I guess so.” She replied, in a muted tone.
“It’s nice.”
They continued in silence for a while longer, Jin Woo perhaps reading her subdued mood, gazing out at the water. They walked until the path they were on ended abruptly at a rocky breakwater and they were forced to turn back, walking even slower on the return trip. Stepping into the footprints they’d left in the wet sand going in the other direction.
Without warning, Jin Woo said, “I want kids. Do you think you want children?”
“Why all of a sudden…?” Ha Jin gave a nervous laugh at the unexpected question.          
“I was just curious. I really want kids. At least two. A boy and a girl.” Ha Jin must have looked as startled as she felt because he continued, “I don’t mean right now. We can get married first if you want. I just thought you should know.”
Maybe in another moment she would have felt differently, but her head was in no place for a spur of the moment proposal. She tried to play it off as a joke, “Gee. Marriage and children. You sure made a turnaround from wanting to break up with me yesterday.”
“You’re right. Sorry,” He said, rubbing the back of his head with his free hand and looking contrite. “I’m not trying to give you whiplash. I’ve never been very good at doing things halfway, I guess. If I’ve decided to be with you, that means I want to be all the way with you. Without holding anything back. No need to rush anything, I understand if you want to time to find your feet. But I want to be honest.”
Ha Jin didn’t know what to say to this so she said nothing.
He went on, “I want to try everything with you, all over again. For the first time. I want to go on dates and hold hands and travel to places like this. I want to live freely with you while I have the chance. To live as well as I possibly can for you. I want another chance to marry you, properly this time. And I want a little girl who looks like you…”
Something finally clicked into place. The empty feeling at the center of her, the reason her happiness was incomplete, she had remembered. Ha Jin came to a standstill, her fingers slipping out of Jin Woo’s hand.
I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. My Han Byul. My little girl.
Jin Woo took another two steps before looking back at her, “What is it? Did I say something wrong?”
Through her sorrow Ha Jin tried to speak, but at first she couldn’t. Tears had started to fall, and once they started they wouldn’t stop. She was imagining the last time she had seen her baby, realizing as Jin Woo took her by the shoulders, searching her face for an explanation, he doesn’t even know. How do I tell him?
Finally she managed, “You and I…we had…we already…I never told you...the real reason I had to leave the palace.”
For a few more seconds Jin Woo frowned, eyes full of concern, trying to make sense of her words, but almost as quickly his brow cleared with a realization. He pulled her into an embrace. “Shh, it’s okay. It’s going to be okay.”
Between racking sobs she gasped, “You don’t…understand…I…”
“You don’t have to explain. I already know.”
“…What?”
“Here I’ve been wondering what I could do to repay what I owe you. I didn’t realize all this time there was something I could still give you. I’m sorry I didn’t think of it sooner.”
When she had caught her breath somewhat she said, “What are you talking about?”
Jin Woo smiled at her tenderly, wiping the tears from her face with his thumbs, “Do you want me to tell you about our daughter?”
They spent the next few hours with Jin Woo telling her everything he could think of about Han Byul. Not always in order, not always coherently, but with animation and warmth.
“First and foremost,” He said, as though reading her mind, “Jung kept his promise to you. She never lived in the palace as long as I was alive.” Apparently the 14th prince had remained fiercely insistent that the little girl was nobody’s but his own. Even long after Wang So knew the truth about her origin, he would never admit otherwise. It was only years later, under the influence of strong liquor and after much protest that he had even admitted that Hae Soo was the real mother, that she had begged him never to let Han Byul go into the palace.
So hadn’t found out about her until several years after Soo’s death, and even that was an accident on Jung’s part. “My brother broke his exile. Left his hometown and made the journey with her to Song’ak for your death anniversary. That was when I knew.” He said. On the day very So had met Han Byul, Jung’s exile was lifted. “We came up with an arrangement. He would bring his ‘daughter’ to the capital once a year. In return, I would never ask him to send her to the court.”
“Tell me again,” Ha Jin asked, “What she looked like.”
“She resembled you. She had your hair and your eyes. From what I heard she could be very stubborn when she set her mind to something. And naturally Jung spoiled her to death.” From everything So had seen or heard, Jung was the most doting father one could have asked for. “It’s funny, she had your looks and your spirit, but all of her facial expressions were Jung’s.”
That image made Ha Jin laugh, thinking of how wild the 14th prince had been in his youth, and then her laughter almost set her off crying again. “I really wish I could have seen her.”
“She would have loved you. She did love you in her own way. Jung taught her to love your memory. He would tell her about you the way I’m telling you about her now. She came to the stone pagodas every year to preform your rites.”
Ha Jin could tell that despite his demeanor, it wasn’t easy for Jin Woo to talk about these things. Especially when he spoke about his brother, his eyes grew clouded. They never fully reconciled, I suppose, after what happened with their mother…The thought made her sad and she dismissed it quickly. A conversation for another day.
“It’s so strange. I hardly knew her but I miss her so much it aches when I think about her.”
“Well, you’re a mother. She’s a part of you, even now. If you had gotten the chance to watch her grow up you would have been an amazing mother. You would be again, if you ever chose to.”
“Thank you for talking about it like this. You don’t know how grateful…”
“Don’t be grateful. I’m happy to do it. I miss her too. Whenever you like, as often as you like, you just have to ask and I’ll tell you everything all over again.”
After listening to all this, the hollow place in Ha Jin’s heart—the  place where she now realized Han Byul fit—didn’t disappear, but it was filled somewhat by Jin Woo’s recovered memories of the little girl, growing into a happy and healthy young woman, far away from the dangers of the palace. Even if she was far out of Ha Jin’s reach, it was a comforting to know that she had managed to protect her daughter in the end. And who knew if they wouldn’t see each other again someday?
By the time they turned back up at the pension it was already lunch time. The ahjumma who owned the place greeted them both with almost too much enthusiasm and inquired—Ha Jin thought a bit cheekily—about how they had slept the night before. She served Ha Jin a double portion of rice, saying something in Jin Woo’s ear as she passed by. Ha Jin thought she heard the words “honeymoon baby” and something about red ginseng.
“What did she just say?” Ha Jin asked when she was gone, but he only turned bright red, filling his mouth with food and refusing to answer.
They whiled away the rest of the day in a senseless and haphazard way, enjoying each other’s company. Before she knew it dinner had passed them by and then the sun was setting. Where has the day gone?
“I wish we could stay here for a few more days. Two nights isn’t enough.” She said, as they were walking back to their room.
“We can come back if you like. Someday. When we both have more time to explore the island.”
“I’d like that.”
Ha Jin wandered into the en suite and caught sight of herself in the mirror. Her hair was a mess of snarls and rats nets. She let out an audible yelp as she untied the scarf that had been barely holding it in check. “I can’t believe you let me run around with sex hair all day.”
“I don’t think anyone noticed.”
“Tell that to the pension owner. No wonder she couldn’t stop snickering every time she saw me.”
"Bring your comb out here,” Jin Woo said, “I’ll brush it out for you.”
Ha Jin did as she was told, sitting cross-legged in front of Jin Woo on the bed while he gently began to work the tangles out of her long black hair.
“I’ve been thinking about something. I want your opinion.” He said.
“Mmm.” Ha Jin had her eyes closed, enjoying the sensation of Jin Woo playing with her hair, despite the occasional tug on her scalp. “Is it about having a baby? Because I’m going to need a few days to adjust to the idea.”
“No, it’s not about that.” He paused for a while before continuing. “What do you think about me, possibly, leaving my firm?”
“Why? To start you own practice?”
“No. I’ve been thinking I would quit practicing law all together.”
She tried to turn her head sharply to look at him, causing him to pull her hair. “Ouch.”
“Sorry.”
Ha Jin didn’t know much about his job, but she had always had the impression that he worked for a very prestigious and competitive law firm. And besides a few recent rough patches—most of which were in some way related to her—she knew he was very good at what he did. “Haven’t you always wanted to be a lawyer?”
“I’ve always wanted to earn my father’s approval.” He said. “I don’t think I’ve ever really wanted to be a lawyer.”
“What would you do instead?”
“That’s kind of the reason I wanted to talk to you about it.” She wished that she was facing him so she could try to read his expression. His voice sounded distant. “You know that Ji Mo—I mean Professor Choi is still studying what happened to us, don’t you? Looking into the possibility that there might be others like you and me. Other reincarnations. Other time slips.”
She hadn’t. She knew that he was looking for Wang Moo, but she had never even considered the idea that it went further than that. And Ji Mong had never mentioned it, perhaps on purpose to keep from upsetting her.
When she didn’t reply Jin Woo continued, “Well I’ve been thinking of ways that I could help him.”
“Help him? Why?”
“I don’t believe what happened to you and the Professor was an accident. I don’t believe it was an isolated incident either. I’ve always dismissed the possibility of the supernatural out of hand, but I can’t ignore everything that’s happened to me. If there is a reason you went back, then there’s a reason that you and I are here right now. There might be something bigger on the horizon. A greater purpose behind all of this. I want to find out what that is.” He ran the brush through the length of her hair several more times before saying, “There, all finished.”
Ha Jin swept her hair over one shoulder and began to braid it loosely for sleep. Slowly she turned to face Jin Woo, studying his eyes.
“What are you thinking?” He asked.
“I guess I’m just taken aback. I thought you would want to leave all of this behind us, to try to forget. But instead you want to dig further. I don’t know what to say.”
“The thing is, I don’t think forgetting is an option. I wish it was. I wish I could go on with my life as though nothing has changed, but I don’t think I can. Any more than I could disown a part of my soul. These memories of the past are a part of me, they’ve changed me. If this is who I am now, then I don’t want to live my life blindly. Does that make sense?”
“I think so.”
“Does it scare you?”
She began to say, “A little bit, but—”
He added hastily, “If you tell me not to, I won’t. If it would make you unhappy, then I don’t want to do it.”
“Let me finish. It scares me a little bit, but only because I’ve spent so long trying to run away from it. If you tell me this is where you want to go, then I’ll stick right by your side, and go there with you. I’m done with leaving you alone, okay? But there is one thing that bothers me.”
“What is that?”
“Didn’t you say, eventually, you’d had hopes of being invited to work with your father in the States? If this is what you want to do, it could mean staying in Korea. Perhaps long term. I mean, don’t you still want to live near you family again?”
He set the brush to aside and took one of her hands in both of his, “I don’t want to go anywhere.” He said, bringing her hand up to his lips and kissing it, “All the family I need is right here.”
Ha Jin felt her face begin to color but she didn’t bother trying to hide it, smiling at him. On a rogue impulse she sprang forward, pushing him backwards onto the bed, straddling his hips. Leaning down she kissed him once, softly, and began to sit up again, but he looped his arms around her waist and pulled her down onto his chest, kissing her again. Harder this time, and as he did he rolled them over so he was above her, looking down into her eyes.
“Don’t let me run away again.” She heard him say, “Even if I get scared. Even if I try to. You have to hang onto me like you did before and bring you back to you. Promise me?”
As he spoke he found the hollow of her collar bone with his mouth and kissed her there, over and over again, moving his knee upward and hiking the skirt of her sundress to her thighs. She tried to answer him, but found her powers of speech were failing her. “…Whatever happens…” she managed, “…I promise…” His hand slid slowly to the back of her knee, making her whole body quiver involuntarily.
She started to yank his t-shirt over his head. Jin Woo sat up briefly to finish the job, tossing it off the bed. He rested one hand on either side of her head, gazing down at her intently. And the expression in his eyes now was not quite that of Jin Woo, and not entirely of So either, instead it was something new and thrilling.
“Soo-ya.” His voice was low and earnest, and the use of her old name surprised her, “Saranghae.”
She reached for him, caressing his cheek with the blade of her hand, whispering back, “Me too. Saranghae, naui Hwangja-nim.”
  [The End]
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pathfinderyderss · 3 years ago
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I Shall Not Want
Chapter: [2/?] | Far Cry 5 [John Seed x Deputy] | M (Violent Themes) | AO3
The thought never even crossed her mind — the occurrence was rare. So rare that most people think it doesn’t exist. This link between soulmates. She remembers a few scattered articles from high school and college; back when it was a dream – to find the one person who would understand her for all she was. The irony of it all was as Deputy Bridget Campion, curled in on herself, wishing for nothing more than to sleep in her own bed, the last thing she wanted to hear was someone else’s voice in her head.
Soulmate AU where soulmates have the ability to hear the other person’s thoughts.
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humanlighthouse · 4 years ago
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Chapters: 6/? Fandom: Anne with an E (TV) Rating: Not Rated Warnings: Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings Relationships: Gilbert Blythe/Anne Shirley Characters: Anne Shirley, Gilbert Blythe Additional Tags: Fluff, Tooth-Rotting Fluff, Homecoming, Post Season 1, shirbert, some angst i guess?, canon-typical angst, Gilbert learns to deal with his depression, Anne is an angel, Gilbert Needs A Hug, cute kids in love Summary:
Gilbert comes home.
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determinators · 22 days ago
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One of the downsides to all this deltarune posting 2/7s of the way through is that some of these posts are going to age like this:
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and all of us know that so I say we have an admirable amount of hubris
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perkynurples · 4 months ago
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AFTERCARE. Blackbonnet, a very irreverent post-canon fix-it of sorts, the service top!Stede fic we've all been looking for (eventually. I swear). >> READ HERE <<
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recordzz · 10 months ago
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zero context
thinks abt spamton’s dialogue boxes turning black after the phone calls
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vamossainz55 · 20 days ago
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Moonlight Chapter 2 || Carlos Sainz x Reader
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A/N: Hey guys!! I hope everybody's doing well. I told myself that I would have the next chapter up for next week but my brain is literally going a mile a minute so I decided to finish up the second chapter already (it is almost 1am lmao). Idek if anybody is reading this but I might have some mistakes here and there but please feel free to let me know!! All constructive criticism is appreciated. This chapter is also a bit rushed but I feel like I want to do some building + context before throwing it all in but I am hoping to get more Carlos into the next chapter <3. Thank you so much and I literally love you if you are still reading until here.
ANYWAYS im done xoxoxo.
link to chapter 1 / all chapters / my masterlist
Chapter 2 (4k words)
You don’t sleep at all that night, your mind is spinning and a part of you knows that all the drinks you had were finally catching up to you. Your eyes scan the ceiling, deciding to focus on the small dent you had accidentally left there in hopes to get your mind to still. You couldn’t believe what you had read. McLaren? Out of all teams? A part of you even wants to laugh, because of course this would happen to you. 
You pick up your phone again, read over the email again, and again, and again. How were the words not changing? How were you supposed to join a team knowing Carlos was going to be there? What were you going to do?
A weird mix of emotions settle in your chest. Happiness, excitement, nervousness, pride, and even anger- and maybe a little sadness. You had dreamt about this opportunity for as long as you could remember. Why were you so worried about so many things?
There was one main question drumming in your head, what would happen if you took it? 
You ponder at that thought for what feels like hours, but soon enough your eyes begin to grow heavy. As worried as you were, your body was beginning to shut down, begging to finally get some rest. 
Right before you drift off to sleep you think to yourself still, 
What am I going to do?
_____________
The next day you wake up with the sleep still sticking to your eyes. You had managed to get some sleep, but you didn’t feel like you had gotten enough rest. Your eyes were heavy and your body was sore from the night before. You try your best to settle yourself back to sleep but the moment you close your eyes your mind decides otherwise. 
Thoughts of an orange team flood your brain along with a certain driver, but before you can start thinking too much a knock on the door rips your attention away. 
“Y/n? I’m coming in,” Your roommate announces. You let out a loud groan, telling her to go away, but before you can even finish your sentence you hear your door open and feel a strong weight on your bed. Soon enough you’re being crushed, your roommate’s body sprawled over yours. 
“Oh come on- fuck off, get off of me,” you whine as you hear Jane laugh and shift a bit to lay beside you instead. Being awake for so long helps you notice the soft pressure in the center of your head that slowly begins to spread. Yeah, you were definitely hungover. 
“You smell gross,”Jane says, soon getting inside the covers with you. She feels warm and you can’t help but scoot closer. “You never wanna go out and party with me but you do with Laura,” She says playfully. “But you had fun? Laura told me a guy came home with you.”
And fuck- right. You had forgotten about Bastien. “A guy? Yeah yeah, he dropped me off last night. He asked me out on a date.” You tell her, and you can feel a slight swoop in your stomach still. “I’m actually excited?” You’re a bit nervous at the thought of it. It was rare for you to get excited about these things- let alone to say it outloud. 
Jane grins. “You’re excited for a date? Am I hearing you right?” She asks and you can already feel your cheeks heating up so you try your best to look away and come off as casual. 
“He’s really cute and nice. But he told me he’s just here visiting a friend and looking for jobs so it might not even go anywhere.” You say with a shrug. You wondered if it was weird or not but you felt that it was a bit reassuring to not know where it was going to go, like there weren’t many expectations going into it. If he wasn’t going to be around anyways it would be fine if it didn’t work out. 
Jane’s asking when the date is and she is quite surprised by your answer, “The date’s tonight,” You say before explaining, “but we didn’t agree on the time. Should I text him and ask?” 
The look Jane gives you almost makes you laugh. “No, are you crazy?” She exclaims and you wince at how loud she is being, suddenly remembering about the headache that is spreading through your head.
“Wait for him to text you, and if he doesn’t then his loss you know?,” She says, getting off the bed. You think for a second, and yeah, maybe she is right. You could wait and see if he would show up or not. 
“Where are you going?” You ask, peering over the sheets to look at her. As much as you needed it you did not want time by yourself to think about things. 
“Oh I’m coming back, I’m just getting you some painkillers and water,” she says matter of factly and you return her kindness with a smile. 
“Love you!” You say as you watch her head out of the door. 
_____________
Bastien does end up texting back, and you both go out to dinner that night. It’s nice, the conversation is casual and you both realize it wasn’t just the alcohol talking the night before. You’re a bit too smitten for your liking but you try your best to ignore it. 
He offers to drive you home but by the way he holds the lower of your back you both know it isn’t just for a drive. It’s thrilling really, to sneak someone upstairs again- begging them to be quiet to not wake up your roommate (because of course you wouldn’t hear the end of it). But you both get away with it, and waking up next to someone the next day makes it even more worth it. 
It wasn’t really supposed to become a thing but it does. Bastien had told you over your date that he was only around for the next two weeks. Mainly a mix of hanging out and catching up with friends along with job interviews and looking over other opportunities. You prep yourself for disappointment, tell yourself that it is a one and done, but that’s far from what ends up happening. 
You see him almost every day, he would either drop by with lunch, dinner, or even a coffee to just squeeze some extra time with you. You would let him sneak into yours at night and he would often pick you up to give Laura a break and stay at his. It’s like you were floating on cloud 9. He meets your friends and you meet some of his. Everything is new, fresh, and exciting. 
So much happens that you don’t even realize you’re in your own little bubble. 
But every bubble is bound to burst. 
It happens to you a whole week after you take Bastien to the airport (with the promise of keeping in touch and seeing eachother soon). Your mind is still preoccupied with him- you both were still texting practically every day- and if you knew any better you were practically dating. But were you really? 
Sure you were practically attached to the hip the whole time you were here, and sure he was texting you good morning, good night, and everything else between the day. But were you really dating? 
There were so many questions still that you had completely forgotten about your upcoming semester. The internship. Your mind suddenly springs. You were sitting at the table with Laura and a few other people in your major when Theo mentions how he had just accepted the offer he had gotten over a week ago. You had completely forgotten about your own offer and it had been over 3 weeks since you had gotten your email. 
“Shit- shit, no way.” You murmur to yourself as you open your phone. Most of the table is distracted in their own conversation but you can feel Laura and one or two other pairs of eyes scanning over you in interest as you scroll through your phone. How could you be so stupid and forget about it? You read through your emails quickly, scrolling through and looking for the email that had sent you the offer. 
You finally see the latest email that you had gotten from them. Your heart sinks as your phone loads, already dreading what the email would say. 
It finally loads and you take a deep breath before reading. 
F1 Talent Program Offer: 3 days to Deadline. | Received: 2d ago 
One day left to decide. You let out a nervous laugh as you run your hand through your hair, letting out a shaky breath. Could you even make a choice within a day? 
“What are you looking at?” Laura huffs, leaning next to you to read over your shoulder. She practically lets out a gasp before looking at you, eyes wide. “Y/n! Oh my god. You did it!” She says and before you know it you feel two arms wrapped around you and squeezing you tight and knocking the air out of you. 
“What’s going on, what happened?” You hear one of your classmates ask. Laura chimes in before you can, and you can hear the pride in her voice as she announces it. 
“She got accepted for the engineering talent program for F1!” She says proudly and you force a smile onto your lips as you can hear everyone gasp. Soon the table is congratulating you and you thank everyone quite sheepishly. As much as you wanted to get mad at Laura you could tell how happy she was for you.
You try your best to smile it off, not wanting to seem ungrateful for the opportunity  but you can tell Laura knows something is off. You feel a grip on your shoulder before you realise Laura is pulling you step aside for a bit. You stumble a bit to follow her and go to ask if everything is okay but Laura beats you to it.  
“So? What’s wrong? You should be exhilarated about this- bragging left and right.” Laura says, already crossing her arms across her chest. Four years of friendship and you are still amazed with how well she can read you. 
“I am happy, I am.” You try your best to say convincingly but the look Laura gives you says enough. “No- seriously I am. I can’t believe I got it. You know how hard I worked for this?” You say, and its true. All the hard work you had put in the past years was for this moment. The sleepless nights before an exam, the being away from family to be able to study at the best school, missing out on parties to be able to get enough sleep for class, even the endless nights crying when everything became too much. It was all for this moment. 
“But?” Laura asks, and she can tell that you are thinking too much. You tend to do that thing where your nose twitches slightly, whenever your brain begins to eat itself from the inside out and let the worries settle in. 
“I got accepted into McLaren.” You tell her quietly because it's embarrassing to say it outloud. Embarrassing to admit to yourself how much Carlos still had a hold of you. 
Her brows furrow slightly and she gives you a shrug. “So?” 
You frown at her. Although she was not into racing you were pretty sure you had kept her updated with where Carlos would be going within the upcoming season. “I told you. Carlos is going to join McLaren. What if I have to see him? Talk to him? Work with him?” You say, this time even more quietly but just because you can feel your other friends trying to snoop and look over to you both. 
“Again, so?” Laura asks, and this time she shakes her head and takes your hands into hers. “Y/n, look at me.” She says, squeezing your hands gently. “You’ve been dreaming about this since before I met you.” Her voice is soft yet firm, and somehow you feel your chest begin to swell. “Do not let someone from the past scare you away from your future. You have to take this opportunity y/n.”
You stare at her for a bit, letting out a shaky breath. Your heart is beating in your ears because she is right. You have been dreaming about this for ages. You pull her into a tight hug, tucking your face into her shoulder. 
“Thank you.” You say, already feeling part of the weight on your shoulders slowly lifting. You slowly pull away, smiling at her from ear to ear. “Come over to mine? I need to send in my acceptance.” 
_____________
Accepting the offer was less dreadful than you thought, taking into account that you weren’t starting the internship after your graduation. But time flew by faster than you thought it would. 
The months between accepting the offer and starting at McLaren were eventful. Looking back, you had too many exams, too much stress, and simply too much to do. You were grateful though that you got to enjoy some of the last months with your friends before you all headed to do different things. Not only were you able to finish all your academic requirements but you had finally decided to pay more attention to your personal life too. 
You finally caught up and partied with the girls, had more days out with them, and just enjoyed your time without worrying too much about your next lecture, class, or exam. It was relaxing to finally be able to let go a bit and have fun. Not only that- but Bastien came to visit often too. Before you even realized everybody already knew that the both of you were dating, but by the time you found out you didn’t really mind either. You both worried about the distance considering your internship and how he was still traveling around looking for a job whilst freelancing- but you both figured with a little faith you could make it work.
Even graduation passed by like a breeze. Your parents and your sister flew in and soon enough you were already packing your things into boxes and luggages. Half of your things were being shipped back home as you could not take them around with you so you were definitely forced to pack light. 
And that’s how you ended up there. Staring at the McLaren headquarters, nervously fixing one of the bracelets on your wrist as you waited outside. You had been one of the first few to arrive, but to be fair you had arrived a bit earlier than the agreed time. You couldn’t help but look around, the office was bigger than you thought, along with the large lake adorning the side of the building, it looked amazing and you were trying your best to keep yourself composed without taking photos of everything. You had seen the McLaren headquarters a lot through photos and videos- but this was the first time you were anywhere near it- let alone about to step in. As you looked around more people seemed to trickle in. The others seemed to also be amazed by the site, scanning over the whole area. Even the surroundings were nice and peaceful, vast greenery covering the whole area and more. Soon you heard the automatic doors open alongside a pair of footsteps. 
“Hi, welcome! I’m Andrea. Sorry for the wait.” A woman said, waving at you all. She was wearing a McLaren polo shirt along with black slacks. “Come in, I’ll take you to one of our presentation rooms and we can kick off with some introductions. We’ll have our basic induction and onboarding before handing you off to your own departments and managers.” She announced, eyes meeting yours quickly as she also smiled and looked at everyone else. You can’t help but have a voice in the back of your head telling you to keep an eye out for a certain spanish man. You were absolutely dreading bumping into him. 
The ceilings seem even taller from the inside, and the glass walls allow natural light to fill the building. You look around as you follow Andrea, appreciating the clean and modern design the building had adopted. “Here, come in.” Andrea says, soon opening the door to a medium sized auditorium with a powerpoint slide already splayed on the screen. 
The onboarding goes by smoothly and you all introduce yourselves one by one. You’re a bit nervous since you introduce yourself first, but you get through it quickly before others follow up with their own introduction. After going through almost half of the room you soon learn there are three other interns from other departments also joining and you relax a bit knowing you were all in a similar situation. A bit after the introductions you all go through some general knowledge about McLaren, learning about the values and the mission of the company. After a few more fun facts you’re all sent off with your own managers who are waiting outside at the door. 
“Y/n?” A man asked, stepping closer to you. You turn and smile once you see a tall man with short black hair. 
“Hi yes, that’s me. It’s nice to meet you.” You say with a smile, putting your hand out for a handshake. He takes this moment to introduce himself. 
“Hi, perfect! My name is Tom. Welcome to the team.” He says before pulling his hand away. He nods slightly towards the direction you both are supposed to go to before explaining the day’s run down. “We’ll take these first few weeks for you to look over the systems we use, learn more about them, and get familiar with them. We can analyze past data and see how you interpret it compared to our previous interpretations.” You nodded along as you followed him, already getting excited as he also told you more about the team. 
“We will also have an event later tonight with everyone, just a few welcoming drinks. You don’t have to show up but it would be nice and good for you to socialize with everyone too.” Tom smiles as he opens the door to one of the rooms. Something from the corner of your eyes captures your attention but once you look over it's gone. You look back ahead of you and take a deep breath before stepping in. 
_____________
You’re barely there for a full working day and your brain is fried. Numbers were printed into the inner corners of your brain and you had learned so much that you weren’t sure if you had enough space to store it all. Despite your exhaustion and the overload of information you were buzzing. You could already feel your fingers twitching, ready to get your hands on something and to help out. They had explained to you that the first few weeks were a bit hands-off, focusing on getting you settled in and learning mostly the theory behind it all but you felt like you couldn’t wait. So much was happening around you and you wanted to do something more. 
“I think we have our welcoming drinks in a bit. How about we head out there and you can meet some people from the other departments?” Tom offers and you thank him, already following him with a few other newcomers that had joined the team too. You had made friends with a woman who had recently joined too, Cara, as you both were one of the few women within the engineering team, so you stuck to her side as you all trickled into the room. 
“I think I’m going to nib a few snacks.” You say, already nodding at Cara, so you both decide to walk together to the table with several snacks. You grab a small plate and a few of the snacks, waiting for Cara to grab something for herself too. Once you’re back to Tom and the others you set your plate on the table, “I grabbed a bit extra, just in case anybody wanted a bite too.” You smile. Tom seems to look over the plate, already ready to fish a sandwich off your plate when you see two figures coming over, and one seems a bit too familiar. You tense a little and instantly grow quiet, already looking away before even making sure if you had seen the right thing or not. 
“Tom! Hey, how are you?” Zak says, grinning as he pats Tom on the back. You’re torn between looking over or keeping your eyes away, but as soon you hear the other person’s voice you screw your eyes shut, already feeling your heartbeat race. 
“Hello Tom, Zak told me we had new people starting. Decided to drop by since we’re gonna be working together a lot no?” And you don’t even need to look over to know who’s voice it is. You can’t tell if there’s a knot in your throat or the food is coming back up because you start to feel a bit sick. Your legs twitch to get up, but your brain is screaming not to run. Not in front of your new manager, and even worse the CEO of your company. 
You quietly look over, already feeling your palms get clammy. Zak and Carlos look so focused on Tom that you realize they had barely looked over to the rest of the group, but Tom decides to change this. “Yeah- yeah. Everyone here’s new. Wanted to get them to mingle a bit.” He says, soon turning to you all. Zak and Carlos look towards you all, smiling. A part of you wonders if he doesn’t recognize you but you notice the moment that he does. 
He freezes a bit and blinks, eyes locked on yours and you quickly look away, breaking eye contact. Tom and Zak don’t even notice, not until Cara approaches Carlos, who barely reacts as he shakes her hand. As Carlos is, he quickly recovers and composes himself, apologizing before introducing himself. 
“So this is Cara, she is our new Junior Aero Engineer, she worked quite a bit in the W League and in the F2 series,” Tom says. Carlos manages to make some eye contact but you can feel his eyes shift from her to you but you try not to look back at him. After three more introductions Tom shifts the attention to you. 
You force yourself to look this time and you bite the inside of your cheek to remain calm. You can see Carlos is about to say something, but he struggles to find the words. His eyes are a bit all over the place, and his nose is twitching the way it does whenever he’s nervous. The tension is suddenly visible in the group and all eyes are on you both. 
“Do you know each other?” Zak asks, deciding to be the one to break the silence. 
“Actually,” Carlos starts. 
“No- no we don’t.” You casually laugh, and what? You were meant to stay quiet. But what were you supposed to do? Let Carlos tell not only Tom, but also Zak, and the rest of the team that you used to what, date? A part of you realizes, maybe he was going to say friends. But it was too late now. “My name is y/n. Nice to meet you” You say, and you can tell Carlos’ demeanor instantly changes. His back straightens and he quickly plasters on the tight lipped smile you used to hate. “I’m,” You stutter a bit when he holds your hand to shake it,  “I’m the new Engineer Intern.” and you can tell he’s upset. His eyes are cold as he locks eyes with you again. This time you can’t look away. 
“Carlos.” He says shortly. It pierces through you like a knife. “Nice to meet you.” 
“Nice to meet you too,” You murmur. 
You feel a pool of instant regret settling in your stomach as he turns his back towards you and goes to greet the other new starters. 
What had you gotten yourself into?
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Link to chapter 3
Taglist: @luvrboygaslys-interacts @mossafiato
(if you drop a comment i'll tag or just let me know and i'll add you!! ily xoxo)
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lostandundead · a year ago
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Chapter 3: The Queen Of The Castle
Jester’s original job was to entertain others. But today, it was her job to reign. Ever since the prince ‘ran away’, the king and queen fell into a panic. Luckily, she was willing to help them as long as she became the new ruler of the fantasy world. They agreed to it and decided to assist her by becoming two of her seven generals.
She was currently in the meeting, discussing their next course of action.
“As you know, Prince Arctyle Checkers ran away and there is currently a search for him. I have gathered you seven here to figure out what shall we do next.” She stated, observing each person in the room.
“Hold on a second,” Pascal, a colored pencil swordswoman, said, “not including you, there are only six of us here!”
“The seventh one is late again. The only reason I even have them as a general is because desperate times come for desperate measures.”
“You wouldn’t…”
“I would and I did. Here they come now.”
As if on cue, they came into the room. They had messy hair that looked like strips of wire underneath a beanie. They also wore a bright jacket and a shirt with a vinyl underneath it. Baggy pants were also worn, giving them a laid back appearance. What was most recognizable was their face. It was just a black screen, with white circles for eyes and a plain old smile for their mouth.
“You are late, DJ.” Jester casually told the newcomer.
“You told me to come on short notice so of course I would be late!” The robot responded, spinning a pair of headphones around their finger.
Jester sighed as the DJ took their seat. She once again sat up straight to continue the meeting.
“I specifically hired you all since you are either close to Arctyle or competent for this job. While you were all panicking, I managed to figure out the whereabouts of the prince.”
She then pulls out a map of the Earth and lays it out on the table, much to the shock of everyone. It was practically forbidden for the fantasy world to interact with the real world, but since she is now the queen, Jester can now do whatever she wants.
“You must be joking!” The former king, Desmond yelled.
“I may be a jester but I am not joking.” She huffed, “This is where the prince is. He has started to grow hostile, so it would make sense that he would break some of the rules.”
“But he wouldn’t do that.” DJ said, “We’re close friends and I know him like the back of my hand. That goody two shoes would never do something this bad.”
“Did you expect him to run away?” She responded and the DJ was silent, “Didn’t think so!”
“So you're telling me that we have to break one of the oldest rules in the book?” Lilac, the former queen asked.
“Do you want your child back?” Jester asked.
“Of course I do!” Lilac responded sharply.
“Then it’s settled. We are going to Earth. However, it won’t be easy to get there so I will open up portals to the real world. Once the plan has begun, I want at least one of you to defend a portal for anyone that tries to stop us. And before any of you even consider it, if I find out that you are betraying us, you will be crushed!” She emphasized her point by slamming her fist on the table.
Silence.
“That is all I have to say.” She said after a moment, “We will meet again tomorrow.”
Slowly, people began to leave the room and once she made sure that no one was there, she left as well. She walked down the dark halls, moonlight shining through the painted glass. She continued her way until she finally reached the balcony, which overlooked the real world. She remembers this spot of course. It is the spot where Arctyle was last seen, the spot where he fell out of the sky. To be honest, Jester was surprised at how easy it was to rise to the throne. She expected it to be much harder. However, that did not matter at the moment. All that matters is that both worlds are within her grasp.
Since the day she was first created, she wanted to see the real and fantasy world combine into one. However, she did not have an excuse to go to the real world in the first place. Now, she does. Once she opens the portals, everything will be set into motion. Everything she worked hard for will soon become reality. If only this moment came earlier.
“How is everything going?” Pascal asked, walking up.
“It’s going well,” Jester responded, “but I didn’t expect you to come report to me this early.”
“I know. I just wanted to let you know that so far, all the generals are going through with the plan and that preparations are already being made.”
“That’s great. When will we be able to strike?”
“In about two days.”
“Thank you for your help. You may leave now.”
Pascal bowed and left Jester alone once again. She turns back towards the real world. Pascal was what one would consider to be a right-hand man (woman?). She was the most loyal and high-ranking general so far. In addition, she also kept an eye on the more unpredictable generals. She was also said to be the best swordswoman in the fantasy world. Overall, she was a great ally to have on Jester’s side. The other generals were also fine, they just happen to be a little more reckless and impulsive.
Jester then turned to look at the sky. It was full of thousands upon thousands of shining stars that seemed to form a ring around the glowing moon. She started to wonder if one day, she would claim them for herself. It may seem quite far fetched but practically anything is possible if you know how to do it. Perhaps she can even take the sun, but that was for another day.
Finally, she looks upon the fantasy world, so large and beautiful but will never be complete until the real world joins. It was so bizarre that these two worlds can be so different but so similar at the same time. However, they will be one once she finally reaches her goal. No one needs to know what it is yet. The time will soon arrive. The day will soon come. The day where they cheer her name.
She can even hear it now, loud and clear.
All Hail Queen Jester.
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drarrily-we-row-along · 2 months ago
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Day 195: Hobbies
"Alright, Mr. Potter," the witch conducting the interview said, "tell us about some of your hobbies. What do you enjoy doing in your free time?"
Harry blinked, leaned back in the chair, and tried to reign in the magic the was crackling in his fingertips. It was bursting at the seams to get out and Harry wasn't sure what to do with it; that's why he was here.
"Well," he started, "I am really busy." The witch hummed sympathetically. "I've got a lot on my plate with work, and functions, and fundraisers. And of course I see my friends and my godson-"
"So, no hobbies then?" she interrupted.
His jaw snapped shut. He's sure he'd always meant to find a hobby, to find something that brought him joy.
"Well," she said softly, watching the magic sparking in Harry's palms, little flickers of light and heat, like a miniature heat lightning storm in his hand. "I'm just an intake nurse, but," Harry looked up from his hands, taking in her face, reading her like he read suspects, "It sounds to me like you hold an awful lot of people and things together."
He shrugged, it's what had always been expected of him.
"My question, is who holds you?"
Harry's eyes prickled with tears and it startled him, the visceral reaction he'd had to her words.
She didn't seem to require a response, she simply gave him a little nod and stepped out of the room, leaving to return the results to the healer that would be seeing Harry next.
(Read more below the cut)
He sighed and looked down at his hand once more, watching the little flashes of light and trying not to think about what she'd just asked him.
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The healer had told him that he needed to take time off of work. He'd given him centering activities, told him to sleep more, exercise, and find a hobby that he could do with his hands.
At the time it had sounded like the healer was just trying to distract him from whatever weird things were going on with his magic, but the DMLE wanted him to take medical leave until it was sorted anyway, so what choice did he have?
He took a beginner pottery class.
The instructor was ancient; Harry couldn't remember the last person he'd met who was that old. He seemed like he might be a bit senile, seeing as he had no idea who Harry was, which was just fine with Harry. But he was patient and kind, and Harry found that he quite enjoyed the time he spent with him.
He'd been truly awful at first, Harry couldn't even get his lumps of clay to center on the wheel. Then once he'd managed to center it, he'd use too much pressure or lift his hands away too quickly and his piece would go all wobbly or simply collapse.
And it was frustrating. Taking the mass of clay off the wheel so that he could start all over again was not something that he relished and it took him weeks to make anything that looked even remotely passable.
But he enjoyed it.
He liked the feel of the soft, wet clay under his hands. He like the way the wheel spun, the way that even the slightest change in his hands changed the structure in front of him.
He liked that when something went wrong, when something was destroyed completely, he could just start again. There was no great consequence for getting something wrong and that eased something inside of him.
Harry slowly got better at pottery, and maybe something inside of him was starting to get better too.
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After the month that he'd been given as medical leave, Harry didn't really want to go back.
His magic still sparked and flared when he was stressed, when his emotions rose, and nobody at Mungo's seemed close to solving that mystery.
So he did the only think that he could think to do; he submitted his resignation to the DMLE and left. The press was everywhere, constantly hounding him and everyone wanted to understand his decision. But Harry didn't know what to say; he'd done his best to explain his condition but people hadn't understood.
And he hadn't been willing to say that he was exhausted. Tired of constantly worrying about his magic flaring and hurting someone. Tired of always being the savior, never being allowed to make a mistake.
It was by chance (or maybe fate) that he stumbled across a shop that sold Turkish Pottery. He immediately fell in love with the colors and patterns, with how beautiful and bright it was. At his sides, his hands twitched with the desire to create something like that; something that sparked joy merely by looking at it.
Booking a portkey to Turkey had been the easiest thing in the world. Spending the next three years learning the craft, practicing, and apprenticing had been the next easiest thing.
Moving back to England had been harder but Molly hadn't been well and he needed to be closer to her. So he'd gotten a little shop in Muggle London with a spot off in the corner where he installed a traditional kick wheel into the floor so that he could make pottery and maybe sell some of it at the same time.
It was working out alright, if he was honest. Only his friends knew that he'd returned, so he never had to worry about random witches and wizards popping into his shop to get a piece of him. And it was good to be close, good to be able to pop over to Ron and Hermione's for dinner, to have tea with Neville, to join Luna for a lunch date, and play a game of pick up Quidditch at the Burrow.
Seven months after returning, Harry had started to let his guard down. He'd started to believe that maybe this was it, this was his life now. Quiet, simple, happy.
And then the door opened, bell tingling merrily, and Harry looked up and everything fell to pieces.
Both literally and metaphorically because his hands released the vase he'd been casting too quickly and the clay wobbled until it collapsed.
But he hardly even noticed because there in his doorway stood none other than Draco Malfoy.
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To be continued...
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albeolambda · 3 months ago
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Happy Mother’s Day!
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elysiandusk · 8 months ago
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family photo :^)
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splickedylit · 4 days ago
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Poor Unfor-tuna-te Shoals art evolution redraw part three! Illustrations 21-30. Glad to be done and now I'm going to spend the next few weeks endlessly flipping back and forth for my own amusement. :D
(1/2/3)
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unikhroma · 10 months ago
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so
spamton , huh ?
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