18 September 2017 @ 04:56 pm
September 7, 2017:

"You're such a violent person," Thomas said, sounding mock chastising. "First the tree, then the walnut, now the shoe. I'd hate to live with you, shank. Wake up in the morning to a broom handle in the back for some reason."

Hild and Thomas needle each other and chat.

[ HERE | complete | PG ]
Tags: ,
18 September 2017 @ 02:19 pm
With fliers and posters and cheaply made local access advertisements on late night TV cropping up only in the weeks before the ONE DAY ONLY Pop Culture Extravaganza it was surprising just how many people lined up for tickets that Monday morning. Darrow's Convention Center had been rented out in its entirety, with the expansive main room serving as the convention floor, while other, smaller rooms were reserved for odd guest panels and signings.

Most of the guests would've been unrecognizable to anyone not from Darrow. There were the writers of Space Hospital, and a few of the lesser known guest stars. Also on the roster, were the artists and creators of an incomprehensible comic book series in its fifth reboot, about a vigilante ferret with dark pasts and daddy issues, teamed up with a mute, Icelandic princess from the future, fighting the demon hordes of some 5th dimension, galactic Hell. There was a panel on writing the Darrowian Experience, whatever the hell that meant, and a slightly offensive panel about the pros and cons of the Outsider Perspective on Media Today.

On the main floor, there were booths and tables set up, some with handmade wares and amateur artist prints, mostly of unusual and strange characters from equally strange comics and television shows. There were SQUID!! hats and posters, sets of The Graveyard Shift figurines (the variant set with a mint Vincent Blaylock going for $500). There was Space Hospital memorabilia, and Super Power Guy, and just a few recognizable characters scattered in with the knock-off superheroes that seemed just a little too close to their "outside world" counterparts. There were booths dedicated entirely to Tiffany Charlotte and Todd Chad, which all seemed to have the longest lines, selling t-shirts and pillows and posters and records, and even plushies from the short-lived Saturday morning cartoon, Tiffany!

And there were costumes. Professional cosplayers and kids trying out their Halloween costumes early, and people just trying something new. Some were familiar, others weren't, but all of them were at least fun to look at.

Darrow's Pop Culture Extravaganza! ran well into the evening, vendors putting out 50 cent comic boxes as they got ready to close down their booths for good. Tired kids carrying bundles of goodies in their arms, followed by harried parents, shuffled their way out the door. Hardcore comic fans met and exchanged numbers in the lobby, some of them planning to meet up at the local bars later that night.

For just a few more hours, wearing the faces and clothes of their favorite characters, they could all pretend that they wouldn't have to go back to their real lives in the morning.

[[Impromptu Pop Culture Convention at Darrow's Convention Center! Tag in, tag around, no limits!]]
18 September 2017 @ 08:07 am
Sept 2017:

Even though Gannicus said they were likely to have been fighting dogs, the red beast was a gentle thing, sweet, friendly. He gravitated against Agron's side, and Agron would not wish to be parted from him even if he thought he could be.

Agron is surprised by (and in turn surprises Steve with) a new doggo.

[ HERE | ongoing | surprise pups? ]
17 September 2017 @ 11:12 pm
Bull stared at the pile of familiar gear. He'd been walking through the park and he'd almost missed it. He was taking the familiarity of his surroundings for granted, not paying attention to familiar sights and sounds the way he normally might. He could have walked right by it - or was there something about this place that would have made him notice it, no matter what?

He moved closer, looking around like he expected someone to appear and explain - a messenger, an assassin, a ghost. Something from his past that might come to bite him. But nothing came, and he was standing in front of things he hadn't seen in over a year.

A year, he realized. He had been in Darrow for over a year now, and somehow that time had passed with relative ease. He had been thinking a lot about Thedas recently, about everything life behind, about the decades of his life piling up. And here was a reminder of all of it: his gear, some of which he'd had since Seheron, since his first assignment in the Ben-Hassrath. He already knew what was in the trunk, knew his writing desk would be tucked away into it with unfinished letters, knew the small odds and ends he kept with him, but still. He had to see.

With a grunt he eased down on one knee so he could open the trunk, revealing armor and weapons he hadn't touched in too long. He stood up again and hefted up the maul that had been leaning against the side of the trunk - a weapon made to fit someone his size. His good eye gleamed dangerously, and it took everything in him not to give it a practice swing.

"I don't know if this is a great day or a bad omen," he said out loud.

[Find the Iron Bull in the park - he's just received his gear from home and he's probably having some flashbacks, so try not to surprise the giant Qunari holding a maul. Great time to meet him!]

It had been two hours. Geralt could have infinite patience if he wanted to, mostly because he'd been forced to learn infinite patience, under Vesemir's tutelage. But it had been two hours of making what seemed to be constant, nonsensical loops, since Geralt had run into the creature.

There was some kind of illusion going on, but the details of it, Geralt didn't know.

He'd caught it eating out of a dumpster, by complete chance. It hadn't been a contract he was hired for, and he hadn't been intent on hunting it down. He'd just smelled it -- by that complete chance -- and gone after it, mostly out of curiosity to learn more. There were a lot of things in Darrow that he wanted to, knew he had to, learn more about. For his own safety, more than anything else.

It wasn't a pleasant-looking or pleasant-smelling creature. It reminded him, almost, of a fiend or chort, but it wasn't either of those, and it was at once smaller, less threatening, and more uncomfortable to look at.

It was gangly, boney, unlike hefty fiends. The legs reminded Geralt of a deer, ending in cloven hooves, and unnaturally long, as were the arms. The torso was largely humanoid, but the head -- it was human, but only in a vague, stomach-turning way. It looked more like the face of a horse, long, with eyes far apart on the sides of the head. It had long, scraggly, thin hair growing like a mane, and at the end of the long snout, large, flat yellow teeth which were too big for the mouth, and hung out past the lips even when the mouth was closed.

An ugly son of a bitch.

When it noticed Geralt approaching in a sneak, close to the wall, it had let out an unpleasant, frightened howl, and taken off into the darkness. Geralt had set off in quick pursuit, but quickly found himself lost. The smell of the thing seemed to be coming from every direction at once, and no matter which direction Geralt turned or how many turns he took, he seemed to always end up back at the original dumpster.

"Hate illusions."

[ get stuck in the tikbalang's loop with geralt. in witcher fashion, the tikbalang is a lot like its folkloric counterpart, except with some differences. in this case, it'll only let you out of the loop if it feels you're vulnerable and no threat. which means geralt and your pup will have to get completely naked. yes. don't tag this is you're not prepared for your pup to get completely naked.]
17 September 2017 @ 09:26 pm
God, it had been shit couple of weeks.

With back to class, all of his summer interns had gone. He might claim not to be a fan of the internship program Panoptes ran, but that would be untrue. Tony only pretended not to appreciate having all the kids around, the chance to mentor college engineering students. The truth was, very apparently, that they were filling in for something his life was sorely missing.

He tried not to put thought into that. He hated examining himself.

Henry Cheng had gone, too. Hopefully back to where he belonged, and his goons, and his Robo-Bee, and his mother. And that was fucking great for Henry Cheng, Tony was glad, woo-hoo, but also Henry had been providing Tony that something that was sorely missing as well.

And Tony felt even sorer for it.

The company needed restructured, and that was fine, the lawyers could handle that. They were professionals. But Tony's life had started to fall into disarray also. His office was an incomprehensible mess to anyone but himself, dishes had piled up in his sink at home. It was all unusual. There were ways in which Tony met the archetype of the rarefied genius, caught in his own head -- but he usually kept immaculate surroundings.

It was depression. It was obviously depression, even if his therapist hadn't straight-out told him so and started suggesting treatments.

But at least Hallowe'en was coming. That might be nice. He'd always loved it, exceedingly more than holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas. It was a holiday for drinking and partying and eating too many Tootsie Rolls and dressing up and pretending to be something you weren't which, Jesus, Tony was good at.

He stood outside the pop-up seasonal costume store, thinking about going in just to look around, because that was actually fun, when he spotted it.

The plastic mask, the familiar colors, grinning up at him.

He grimaced.

"Red And Gold Metal Armor Man?"
17 September 2017 @ 02:03 pm
Dated September 9, 2017:

Edith can't quite place what it is, but the way he stares, it isn't difficult to tell that something's wrong. She draws in a breath for it, quick and sharp, her mouth curving into a frown. It would be easy to keep walking, look elsewhere, write all of this off as some strange encounter and probably never think on it again. She can't quite bring herself to, though — manners, maybe, too deeply instilled in her from an upbringing in another time, or concern, or curiosity, or some combination of the three.

Edith meets Harley, to whose sister she bears an uncomfortable resemblance.

[ HERE | ongoing | pg ]

Dated September 10, 2017:

She's distracted enough in her browsing that she almost doesn't notice someone else nearby, not until she hears his own name. She looks up, then, the glasses she seldom wears perched on the bridge of her nose, and smiles at the sight of a familiar face. Everything about that night — the party with the masks, the evening she and Merry first kissed — seems permanently etched in her memory now, and she can't say she minds.

Edith and Magnus talk about books and the past.

[ HERE | ongoing | pg ]

Dated September 12, 2017:

Better than one of the two of them tackling it alone, still so hopelessly out of their own times. There's an easy kinship to be found in that, something that she's noticed has been a foundation of a good number of her friendships here.

Edith accompanies Serena (and George) on a trip to Törgt to look for furniture for Serena's house. It is, needless to say, a strange experience.

[ HERE | ongoing | pg ]

Dated September 14, 2017:

This time, she's in the laundry room — alone, because of course she is — when she sees him, standing in a shadowy corner, watching her with dark, intent eyes. The sight of him out of the corner of her eye causes her to gasp, but Edith exhales, relieved, when she turns and sees a familiar if somewhat translucent face. "It's you," she says, and chances a step closer, her laundry forgotten. He doesn't quite nod, but his gaze, such as it is, stays fixed on her, as if attempting to communicate with his eyes what he can't with words. She nearly smiles, trying to seem reassuring. "I haven't forgotten you," she promises. "I want to help you, if you'll let me."

In the laundry room of the Bramford, Edith encounters a ghost she's seen before, and shares a little about it with both Lyall and Ed, respectively.

[ i, ii | ongoing | pg ]
I don't know what I'm doing here. I don't know what I'm doing in Darrow, of course, but more specifically I don't know what I'm doing in one of its cafés waiting for potential interviewees for a project I'm maybe stupidly determined to work on.

I'd decided a while ago that I wanted to write about Darrow's origins and mysteries but more than anything, I now want to write about its people. The ones that have come from elsewhere, the ones that have been forced from their homes and their families and their entire worlds with no choice but to embrace this one. I want to know about their befores, their nows and whether they have hope that they'll ever get out of here. If they want to.

I want to know everything about them because I don't want to think about me. Not right now.

After all that time on the Avalon with Hawkeye, I've been forced to confront my own reality in a new light. For some reason or another, I've been brought to Darrow twice. I don't know whether it means something or it's supposed to mean something, but I want it to. I have to have a purpose. I can't live without one. I don't think anyone can.

So I've put out ads online and a few flyers around the area with my contact information and a vague call for Darrow's non-locals. I know it's a controversial subject for the actual locals and the last thing I want to do is offend anyone, but that seems to be the nature of journalism – or at least it always has been for me. I still intend to be as soft as possible and not take advantage of the situation and the information that's offered to me, but this is a story I need to tell. The one of our journey – together.

After all, I'd been writing about a different journey not all that long ago. The one of Jim and mine. Maybe one day I'll write about us again, maybe that will be the final chapter if I ever manage to finish this project I've barely even started, but I'm not ready. I don't want to dwell on him. I'd realized that when I was back on the Avalon and when I was with Hawkeye. My life is not Jim. It never was, even when it felt like it. Even when he made me feel like it.

I'll think about him because God knows I can't help it, but I'm saving my words for whoever turns up today. If anyone turns up today.

And if they don't, well, I have coffee.

[Find Aurora at a café of your choice in Darrow. She's put out a call online and also a few flyers for anyone interested in a writing project about Darrow's arrivals from elsewhere. Your pup can have responded to one of those or just find her with her laptop and caffeine by chance. Closed unless we've spoken, thanks.]
16 September 2017 @ 11:13 pm
Dated April 1, 2017:

With their hands entwined, Han leads her up the boarding ramp, gesturing grandly as they enter into the main corridor, and there's not much to see yet but he's still proud of his ship all the same. "Here we are," he says, jabbing a thumb to the right and nodding for her to follow, even as he's already gently tugging on her hand. "This way to the cockpit, that's going to be the first stop on our little tour. It's my favorite place on the ship."

After the Founder's Day party, Han takes Molly back to the Millennium Falcon.

[ HERE | ftb | pg-13 ]

Dated September 12, 2017:

She's turned it over and over in her head, and comes to the same conclusion every time: it's kind of perfect. Jessica will have a child here. She'll be able to see Abigail grow up and know that she'll be happy and healthy without having to be a parent — just a friend of the woman who's about to become her mother, a known entity in some regard but not a caregiver. And with as long as she's spent thinking about it, she knows she won't regret it.

Molly and Jessica finalize Jessica's adoption of Abigail.

[ HERE | ongoing | pg, mentions of unwanted parenthood and postpartum depression ]

Finally alone, Molly considers going to a bar, but then pulls out her phone instead, firing off a quick text to Clarke. She may as well have a little company. It's less depressing than drinking alone. Everything's finally settled. :) Wanna come celebrate with me?

With everything settled, Molly and Clarke go out for drinks.

[ HERE | ongoing | pg, same warnings as above ]

Dated September 15, 2017:

It's only a coincidence that she's near her lawyer's office when she decides to stop for lunch and a coffee, already in the area and remembering the café that Rebecca had showed her. With that being the case, though, it isn't much of a surprise to see Rebecca herself inside, and Molly smiles as she walks towards her.

Molly and Rebecca run into each other and catch up.

[ HERE | ongoing | pg, same warnings as above ]
16 September 2017 @ 02:52 pm
Dated September 16, 2017:

She flips past a few envelopes, a couple of bills, something clearly asking for money, a menu from a restaurant that's opened nearby, and then her heart drops into her stomach.

Mr and Mrs David Goldman, the address reads, and there are any number of them. She knows without having to remember vividly what the specific pieces of mail looked like that she's seen them before, found them crammed into a glove compartment while she was merely looking for a cigarette, about to celebrate her engagement to a man she didn't know was already married.

Jenny receives an unpleasant reminder of her past.

[ HERE | ongoing | pg ]
Mid September, 2017:

Just the thought that we could be stuck here and that this isn't some elaborate trick of our minds or cruel prank pulled by the people who built Darrow starts the panic setting in all over again. It's with one anxious glance that I meet Hawkeye's eyes again before starting around the corner. I need to get away from the pods. "I'm sorry, I can't be here any longer. Not right now."

Aurora and Hawkeye awaken to find themselves aboard the starship Avalon.

[ HERE | ongoing | some discussion of trauma ]
15 September 2017 @ 01:28 pm
 Returning to Valinor had, for such a long count of years, been nothing more than a far-off dream for Galadriel. At times she had begun to question whether her fate would ever move in that direction again, But with the final and utter defeat of Sauron, and having passed the test of wills that Frodo's unexpected offer during his brief sojourn in Lothlorien proved to be, she was bound at last for home. A final journey to return to the Blessed Lands and live out the rest of the world's days in peace and bliss, accompanied by the Ringbearer and her old friend, Mithrandir. They were some of the last to take a ship West, and there was much joy, mingled with only slight hints of trepidation, from the anticipation of seeing the shores of so wonderful a realm as Valinor - for some, it would be the first time, whereas for others, it would be a homecoming. A smooth journey it was, thanks to the fine ship and the marginally finer mariners, and no complaints were to be had all along the way.

Thus it came as somewhat of a surprise when she awoke from an afternoon's hazy slumber to find herself alone in the ship, drifting slowly towards an unfamiliar shore, beyond which lay a settlement of strange design. Never before had she seen such peculiar towers, and such varied forms of architecture, all gathered in one place. It was marvelous to behold, though it also presented somewhat of an enigma. This clearly was not Valinor - she could not make out any familiar geography, nor any of her kin. It could not be Tol Eressea, either. If it were so, then surely the Teleri would have welcomed her, or at least shown themselves. She looked around the ship once more, to see if anyone else was left, but she was indeed alone. One thing did catch her eye, though, for its marked difference from the items she knew had been on board.

There was a curious collection of manuscripts, alongside which aar. Some of the terms were unfamiliar to her, such as the mention of an 'apartment' Was this the doing of Ulmo, perhaps? Was she to be denied her return, despite all the trials, despite the atonement of her many years? Or did he have some grander purpose in mind, and she was to be the instrument of his work? Neither option appealed all too much, and so she tried to clear her mind of what anyone else might want her life to do at the moment, in favour of once again taking her own path. 

Crunching softly against the sand, her ship finally drifted ashore, and she descended gently from it, surveying the immediate area as well as the nearby sky-line. Various people were scattered around nearby, but she did not know what to ask them just yet. She took a step forward, bare feet enjoying the feeling of wet sand underneath, and began to walk slowly, deliberately, with a fairly proud gait in the direction of this settlement. If she was going to remain here for some unknown destiny, then she was not going to do it by hiding in the shadows. 

15 September 2017 @ 06:14 pm

Her smile widens when Saoirse shyly offers her a folded bit of paper that's almost the same color as her cast. "For me?" she asks, accepting the offering, and then sinking into a crouch so she can be more on Saoirse's level. "Did you make this?"

Saoirse makes Greta a thank-you card, and gets more of a reaction than she anticipated.

[ HERE | ftb | cuties ]


It's not easier this time, or better, it's just different. She doesn't cry as much, because she doesn't have the energy for hysterics anymore. It's less like being tempest-tossed and more like being adrift, gritting her teeth through the intermittent swells of sorrow or bitter self-recrimination until the waters still again, and she can get on with things.

Greta gives Saoirse some bad news.

[ HERE | ongoing | sad cuties ]
Every time Korra tries to put this off, Toph Beifong's voice echoes in her ears — that maybe she wants the metal to stay in her body. Maybe she wants to continue wallowing in fear. As much as Korra wants to justify delaying this process because of the shooting pains it sends throughout her body, each passing day makes her feel like the anxiety sinks further into her skin.

Any day now, Zaheer could show up in Darrow. Darrow is a city that runs on hierarchy, where most of the population takes the Mayor's words to heart, and even if bureaucracy doesn't outright block people from the government, getting an audience with an employee can take days. Weeks, depending on the department. It's the kind of system that Zaheer hates — he wants everything to be equal, everyone to start on the same playing field, even if it means taking out a few limbs or people to get there.

She has to be ready for that possibility. She has to be at her best, honing her bending technique every morning. But she can feel the weight in her limbs, the metal coursing through her veins, sending little spikes of pain throughout her body whenever she's about to deal a final blow.

If she can't even come out with a clean win against a stationary figure, how can she ever expect to best Zaheer in battle?

So Korra finds herself in the middle of the city park this morning, tucking herself away in the most secluded section of bushes and trees. Naga curls up beside Korra, head heavy on her front paws as she watches her human. Korra's legs are folded underneath her, crossed just above the ankles as she takes deep breaths in and out, relaxing her shoulders, feeling the blood course through her body.

"I can do this," she whispers under her breath, then raises her arms and starts to push.

Palms press against air, slow and steady, and beads of sweat start to form on her shoulders and neck. The metal passes through her arms, her calf, pounds in her temples. With a grimace, Korra pushes her palms out with more force, a couple beads of sweat flinging off of her fingertips. Her breath catches when she feels it, metal pressing up against her skin.

she's on her knees again, among the rocks and sweltering desert sun, but the air around her is crisp and cold and getting thinner, thinner as he pulls the air from her lungs, and she can't breathe and she can't

"Agh!" Korra shouts, doubling over, her arms pressed up against her stomach as she stops bending. Another failure. Her eyes burn in shame as she takes a moment to simply rest her forehead to her knee, trying to gather the will and energy to try again.

[ find korra in the park, sitting cross-legged, trying to bend metal out of her body. in spite of appearances, this is a good time to meet her. open until this reads otherwise! ]
15 September 2017 @ 09:06 am
September 4th:

Disappearances weren't all too unfamiliar for Thomas. Between his friends back home who'd died during their perilous trek through the Scorch and the people here who were here one day and gone the next, Thomas was pretty experienced with loss. That didn't mean he didn't want to help those he cared about when someone they were close to disappeared.

Thomas goes to check in on Tris after Isabelle's disappearance.

[ here | ongoing | pg for some sad talk ]
15 September 2017 @ 05:58 am
Aug 21, 2017:

That was how I found myself at Jack's. I'd never thought of myself as someone who might like girls. Well, before coming to Darrow, I'd never thought of myself as someone who liked anyone other than Jake! Everything was changing, and I needed to talk to someone about what the heck was going on.

Cassie has a crisis of sexual identity, and Jack helps her out.

[ HERE | ongoing | awkward adorable talk of girl kisses ]
15 September 2017 @ 05:39 am
May 22, 2017:

She sighs, allowing herself a moment of homesickness. She's done her best, so far. She just wants to pretend that this is another job, some errand Kesh sent her on. Find me a pocket universe with lots of weird shit in it, she'd say. Easy as cake, Kesh, Vetra would reply, and Drack, listening in, would say, That's pie, Vetra.

Vetra finds, and uses, the Mailbox to Somewhere Else

[ HERE | ftb | none, really ]

July 20, 2017:

She goes for a run to see if that helps, and ends up just feeling a little more panicky than she had before. So she starts sparring with an invisible partner, trying out familiar moves and moves that might work against people of different sizes. She's panting by the time she's worn out, and she walks back to her apartment slowly, hands shaking slightly.

A cranky Vetra bumps into a Bull that don't want to hear it.

[ HERE | ftb | none ]
15 September 2017 @ 05:24 am
Aug 22, 2017:

Nina popped out of her seat when she heard an order called out. Inej had introduced her to this cafe that managed to blend breakfast and dessert and she decided she would probably just live here. Their waffles were wonderful, and if she was honest with herself, she was starting to fall in love with their French toast as well. SHe didn't know who the French were, but their toast was amazing.

Two girls walk into a waffle house and order the same thing.

[ HERE | ongoing | language? ]

Date on which the post is set:

Jillie is feeling pleasantly sore in places and ways she hasn't in way too long. Paul's gone to work, and she's letting herself out so she can get some cigarettes, some condoms, and a candy bar. Her clothes — which are actually his clothes, because she'd gone to his apartment in a bikini — are haphazard on her body, but she doesn't even care.

Jillie bumps into Paul's neighbor and they have a conversation that should be awkward, but totally isn't.

[ HERE | ongoing | talk of sex and other stuff ]
15 September 2017 @ 12:50 am
Darrow is fantastic, that much Bellamy is certain of, but it's also fucking awful.

It's not necessarily this one employer's response that has Bellamy fuming by the time he steps out of an office building into warm sunshine. It's more the straw that broke the camel's back, the last thing he needs to hear before the point is hammered home, making him feel small and worthless.

He's an outsider.

Bellamy can't really blame them; if he were in their position he'd be reluctant to hire someone with virtually no background beyond 'was a space guard and space janitor and led a band of one hundred kids in a small war.' That he can understand. What hurts is the apologies, the different ways he's heard we can't hire you if we can't perform a proper background check, the silence from those who didn't even bother to return his follow up phone calls.

So he's wasted a hundred dollars taking guard classes and getting certifications, and he has to wonder if any of it was even worth it.

Clarke would say it is, to keep moving on, and it's that alone that keeps Bellamy from letting the flame in his gut grow and flare until he ends up doing something stupid. There's still a danger of that happening, so Bellamy forces himself to start walking away from the office building and only indulges in sending the empty windows a middle finger as he walks off.

First, a bar. Then, maybe after a drink or two he'll text Clarke the news and pick up some comfort food on the way home.

"Hey," he calls out to the first person that walks by, "you happen know where the nearest bar is?"

[Not a bad time to meet Bellamy, despite his grumpiness. Open to all until this says otherwise!]
15 September 2017 @ 03:46 am
Dated September 6, 2017:

She's better at observing than belonging, at documenting from a distance than inserting herself into the middle of things.

In the months since she's arrived here, though, a few very distinct things have changed, and one is that she actually knows people. There aren't many she could claim to know
well, but as she's never been overly social, that's enough for her, her handful of friends and acquaintances. It's all she ever had in New York, anyway, and with the people here, she's gradually finding that she doesn't have to pretend quite as much.

Therese and Hild discuss photography and the changing weather.

[ HERE | ongoing | pg ]