someday I'll get the hang of this

First thing you should know: this blog follows no rhyme nor reason. Some of the madness includes things from books I read and tv shows or movies I watch. Those currently include books by Tamora Pierce, George RR Martin, and many of the BBC's television shows. Sometimes I interrupt the fan-posts with real life things that are important.
Who I Follow
the-history-of-fighting:

 Annoying Arrows 

An arrow hit on a lightly armored or unarmored person might knock them off their feet. Trying to continue doing anything with an arrow sticking out of you is difficult at best, although whether your problem is just agonising pain or your body going into shock (‘freezing up’) at the injury depends on where and to what depth the arrow is lodged.
Attempting to pull out an arrow will only make things worse - historically, arrowheads were not firmly adhered to their shafts. Sometimes they were attached with a blob of candlewax, but usually the archers would simply spit on the shaft before sticking the head on - thus, snapping the shaft (a lot more difficult than Hollywood makes it look, as they were made from the hardest woods available so they would fly further and straighter), was completely pointless, as pulling on the shaft would leave the arrowhead inside the wound.
The only way to remove one was to widen the wound, either with a knife or by wiggling it around. And as archers would usually stick a number of arrows in the dirt at their feet in preparation for firing them, arrow wounds had a strong tendency to become badly infected. The only way to deal with an arrow quickly was to push it through until the head came out the other side. A hit from an arrow was never Only a Flesh Wound.
Full Article: tvtropes.org

the-history-of-fighting:

Annoying Arrows

An arrow hit on a lightly armored or unarmored person might knock them off their feet. Trying to continue doing anything with an arrow sticking out of you is difficult at best, although whether your problem is just agonising pain or your body going into shock (‘freezing up’) at the injury depends on where and to what depth the arrow is lodged.

Attempting to pull out an arrow will only make things worse - historically, arrowheads were not firmly adhered to their shafts. Sometimes they were attached with a blob of candlewax, but usually the archers would simply spit on the shaft before sticking the head on - thus, snapping the shaft (a lot more difficult than Hollywood makes it look, as they were made from the hardest woods available so they would fly further and straighter), was completely pointless, as pulling on the shaft would leave the arrowhead inside the wound.

The only way to remove one was to widen the wound, either with a knife or by wiggling it around. And as archers would usually stick a number of arrows in the dirt at their feet in preparation for firing them, arrow wounds had a strong tendency to become badly infected. The only way to deal with an arrow quickly was to push it through until the head came out the other side. A hit from an arrow was never Only a Flesh Wound.

Full Article: tvtropes.org

(via yellowis4happy)

xaevryn-qg:

OC histories more like

image

It is the very error of the moon;
She comes more nearer earth than she was wont,
And makes men mad.
Othello (Othello, Act V scene ii)

(via dailyshakespeare)

Okay but I’ve been thinking about Shakespeare a lot (surprise). Romeo and Juliet in particular since I wanted to figure out what Romeo did to Tybalt that pissed him off so much. Just general character research for my one scene as Romeo.

And I realized: Tybalt is pissed at Romeo for the ENTIRE PLAY because ROMEO SHOWED UP TO THE CAPULET PARTY. That’s it. There’s no textual evidence for anything else. Tybalt thinks Romeo came to mock them at their own party and HE DECIDES TO KILL ROMEO FOR IT.

Which, for the scene we perform, it’s very telling and does give me some solid ground to stand on when I say “I never injured thee” because what the hell, Tybalt, I wore a mask and Mercutio (cousin of the prince, who way outranks you) said I could come- practically dragged me here.

But is also presents some interesting thoughts. Because why would Tybalt be so pissed about Romeo just being there? Yes, there’s the feud. And yes, Tybalt has some pretty strict ideas about honor and pride and what the hell you are not supposed to do. But Romeo is some teenaged lovesick layabout. What threat is he, really?

It got me thinking that either Tybalt is really the irrational, hotheaded character he seems to be, or Romeo is much less innocent that he seems. What if Tybalt has good reason (other than Romeo’s last name) to not want Romeo within a hundred feet of his home? What would cause the King of Cats to have such a reaction? It’s these sorts of questions that make me want to write stories about secondary characters that sort of set the known narrative on it’s head.

fytortall:

I was listening to First Test today, and I got to the part where Kel is rushing out to serve Lord Wyldon, but she trips and falls on oil that someone put there, so she has to change and is late. Kel merely changes her clothes and starts leaving out her window, but I started thinking about how Alanna would have reacted.

And now I’ve spent all day thinking about how the series’ would be different if they were switched; what if Kel had disguised herself as a boy and Alanna was the first female page?

I can’t think about anything else.

Kel goes to court as Kal and meets George and Jon and Gary and everybody else, but is completely uninterested romantically, so there isn’t a love triangle. But everybody loves her for her completely straight faced reactions to everything accompanied by sardonic remarks. Kel fights Ralon because bullies. Kel playing chess and making fun of Myles. Kel going with Jon to fight the Ysandir because she knows he can’t do it by himself. Duke Roger not knowing what to do because he can’t tell what she thinks of him. Kel becoming the Woman Who Ride Like a Man, but making the changes easier because she knows about the complications in cultures clashing. Kel confusing Wyldon with her level-headedness as he tries to pick fights.

Alanna responding to sexist comments with witty comebacks. Alanna making friends with Eda Bell. Alanna getting into fights with Peachblossom and shouting at her stubborn horse in the stables. Alanna and Neal bickering constantly. Kel taking Neal as her squire. Neal mouthing off but then being cowed by Kel’s stone face and constant vegetables. Alanna fighting all the conservatives in tournaments. Alanna raising the griffin. Alanna having to deal with all the people and babies in Haven. Alanna hunting down Blayce with incoherent fury.

I realize many of the circumstances would not actually occur, as Kel is not a mage and other differences, but I am just so amused.

(via yellowis4happy)

This selfie turned out to be amazing so other people must see it.

buckybarneswho:

Let’s be honest everyone would rather watch a Black Widow movie than antman

(via bisexualmargaerytyrell)

I’m rewatching Game of Thrones while sewing and I JUST REALIZED WHAT EPISODE THIS IS. FUCK THIS SHADOW BABY AND HIS CREEPY ASS. NO WAY.

Asker xaevryn Asks:
Outlander, not Highlander. Two very different things. Do not make the mistakes that I have made.
whimsyfits whimsyfits Said:

Good gracious thank you. Like a guardian angel for tv shows. <3

jesus h. roosevelt christ!

               no sassenech, just me.

(via hawkeyeed)

I almost started cutting fabric without washing it first. What the hell was I thinking.

wordstudio:

bycrom:

By Crom! is my joke-a-panel autobiographical comic featuring life advice and spiritual guidance from Conan the Barbarian. It ran from January 2012 to May 2014, and is collected in two books, The Collected By Crom! and Full Colour Cromulence. You can read the archives on WealdComics.com, and grab the books in print and in PDF.

By Crom! will be tabling with Weald Comics at TCAF, VanCAF, TAAFI and possibly FanExpo Toronto!

Rachel Kahn’s By Crom! series isn’t only funny, though it is funny, it is also charming and comforting and challenging, panel by panel, in great ways. Get thee this comic.

(via professorsparklepants)

I hate student loans. I hate how COMPLETELY IMPOSSIBLE it is to fix anything once it’s started going bad. Because apparently it doesn’t matter if I was told my loans would be deferred until I could get things figured out, it doesn’t matter that I’ve REapplied for a different repayment plan because I CANNOT AFFORD the payments that just reappeared without warning or explanation. So long as they can spiral me into deeper debt, who cares about being honest or decent human beings?

ink-splotch:

  I was so tall.

You were older then.

Can we talk about Susan Pevensie for a moment?

Let’s talk about how, when the war ends, when the Pevensie children go back to London, Susan sees a young woman standing at the train platform, weeping, waving. 

First, Susan thinks civilian; and second, she thinks not much older than me.

Third, Susan thinks Mother.

They surge off the train, into their parents’ arms, laughing, embracing. Around them, the train platform is full of reunions (in her life, trains will give so much to Susan, and take so much away).

Over her mother’s shoulders, Susan sees Peter step solemnly back from his father so that Edmund can swoop in to get his hair paternally ruffled. She meets Peter’s eyes across the space, the way they saw each other over battlefields and tents full of the wounded, in negotiations and formal envoys.

She has always seen Peter when others only saw the king, only duty embodied in a young man’s slight, noble features. Susan can see him now, the way he looks at their father. Once, parents had meant protection, authority, solidity. But Peter’s shoulders are slender, are steady, will be weighed down every moment of the rest of his life. She can see it in him, the unreasonable hopes he had that as mighty a figure as a father might take some of that weight from him.

Their father has one hand on Lucy’s round cheek and he is weeping, for all he is pretending not to. He’s a good man, a portly one, thinner than when they left, but Susan can see the loss in the slope of Peter’s shoulders. This good man cannot lighten the king’s load; he only adds one more responsibility to the towering pile. Susan crosses the space to take Peter’s hand. He inhales and straightens his spine.

"You’ve all grown so much," their mother says.

Edmund is too young to register, but older now than he was at his first war; Lucy, who had been so young when they had left, grew into herself in a world filled with magic. All of them, they have responsibility pressed into their shoulders, old ropes they can’t even grasp for. No one is asking them to take that mantle on their shoulders, and that’s the hardest part. You get used to the weight. You build your world around it, build your identity into the crooks and crannies of the load you carry.

Can we talk about how much the gossipy young girls who cluster in the schoolyard must feel like children to her? And Susan has forgotten about being a child. She is the blessed, the chosen, the promised. Susan has decades on them, wars, loss and betrayal, victory and growing fields, the trust of her subjects. It was a visceral thing, to have all those lives under her protection and to know that her subjects slept safe, peacefully, on dark nights. Here, on this drab concrete, her people are untouchable, indefensible; her self is vanished, her kingdom gone; she can feel the loss like a wound. She has lost her power, but that trust, that responsibility remains. It circles her ankles, trips her in the school hallways.

She barely speaks to her schoolmates. The first few years back, guilt lives in her shaking hands.

For a long time Susan doesn’t want to be tied down to anything (she doesn’t want anything tied down to her, because she has, it seems, a pattern of disappearing). Peter pours himself into schoolwork and extracurriculars. He wakes and works, excels in his steady way, like he owes someone something. 

Lucy befriends wayward girls like they were shy dryads, sly naiads. Lucy walks the playground with all the bright, sprightly grace of a girl who could find worlds in the backs of wardrobes, and she finds smiles in schoolgirls, finds enough of herself to give away.

Lucy gives faith, Susan gives effort, time, work—there are many differences between them, these two sister queens, but this was one. But for a long time, after they return, Susan doesn’t give anything. She is a queen who has abandoned her kingdom and she feels that in the very bend of her spine. She will build no more kingdoms, she swears. Her shoulders ache under the weight of a responsibility she will never lose and now can never answer to.

It is Edmund, of all of them, who understands. He is the other who gets angry, for all he holds it in these days. He is Edmund the Just, after all, and weighs each word before he says it. She is Susan the Gentle, because she will give, will build; because where Peter is elevated by duty, she carries responsibility in soft hands, on worn shoulders, pours all she has into it.

It is Lucy who makes things more than they are. Girls are dryads and bullies are the cruel kind of wolf. Trees dance and every roar of a city bus is a hallo from a lion who is not tame. That is Lucy’s battle and she is as glorious as her sunrises. It would kill Susan to live her life strung between two worlds. They go on walks together, Lucy and her effortless blaze, Susan’s quiet sturdy stride. Lucy sings, but Susan watches; the trees do not dance. The trees are only trees.

A boy pulls at a girl’s pigtails across the schoolyard, yanks at the bow on the back of her dress. Susan sees a bully and she marches forward as a friend, a foe, a young woman furious and proud, a kingdomless queen. Susan draws herself up, the scant inches of height she will some day supplement with heels her siblings will scoff at. Dripping majesty, she moves across the ground (crowds part in her wake), and steps between the girl and the bully.

Let’s talk about how Susan was reading a book the day they went through the wardrobe; how she found it sitting, neatly bookmarked, beside her bed the day they came back. Her arms still felt clumsy then, her legs too short but also too gangly. She kept thinking about white stags, about if her mare got home safe, after, about the meetings she had lined up for the next week with the beavers, the heraldic university, the stonecutters’ union. She had paperwork on her desk she had meant to get to, petitions and letters from faun children who wanted to come on a field trip to Cair Paravel.

Susan had this waiting for her here, left out on her little bedside table: a penny and dime novel about a schoolgirl romance, half-read. Susan sat down on the twin mattress and took it in her hands. She remembered buying this, faintly (it had been years now; weeks before they boarded the train for the country, years from this weary shaking moment). She had wanted a detective mystery, but this had seemed more appropriate and she hadn’t wanted to look odd at the cash register.

At school, Susan sees a girl in mathematics who looks like a dryad, willowy limbs and distracted eyes. Where is your tree? Susan wants to ask. Is it safe? Is it blooming? She would fight to keep her safe, talk to her guards, go out on diplomatic missions, negotiate with the local woodcutters.

There’s a girl in the back row, shy, steady, who takes the best and swiftest notes in her very own shorthand. Susan finds herself wanting to recruit her for the Narnian scribe service. She shakes herself, but she approaches the girl after class anyway. Susan reads through wanted ads and helps the girl send out applications for internships.

Or another young woman; this one blazes bright, drawing people in her wake as she chases after efforts for raising money for a new library wing or cleaning up some local empty lot for the children. This girl laughs, shakes her mane of hair, and Susan wants to take her under her wing and teach her how to roar.

"Edmund is so solemn," says her mother, worried, to Susan. "Is he alright? And Lucy seems even less…" Her mother hesitates, chewing a lip.

"Present," Susan offers, because Lucy still has a foot in Narnia the way none of the rest of them do. Peter still holds the weight of his crown, certainly, and Edmund the load of his mistakes. Susan has the faded ink-stains of a hundred missives, orders, treaties, and promises she never got to send. (She wakes now, some nights, full of nerves for a formal audience the next morning, and remembers it is just a literature presentation. She feels relieved and useless).

But Lucy, Lucy walks in light. She dreams of dryads and when she closes her eyes she can hear them dancing in the wind on the upper boughs of the trees in the garden.

It is a stubborn faith, a steady one, harsh even. Lucy clings to things with two small hands that remember having calluses from reins, remember holding hands with dryads and dancing in the moonlight, remember running though a lion’s wild mane. Lucy grins (it is a defiance, not a grace, not a gift); she bares her teeth and goes dancing at midnight under trees that creak in a storm’s gale (she gets a cold and misses a week of school, for that). Lucy will believe until the end of the world, burning with that effortless faith. 

This is not effortless. “Such a happy child,” their mother says of Lucy, sighing relief, glancing uneasily at Edmund. Susan is not a happy child, but she is not meant to be. She is their stability, their quiet, the little, gentle mother, the nursemaid wise beyond her years. No one looks. They rely, and it makes Susan want to scream.

“Luce?” said Edmund. “Happy? I suppose. She’s more a fighter than any of us.”

Lucy gets up early in the mornings and goes outside to watch the sunrise while she eats her toast. Susan is jealous of her ease, for years; an early riser, a morning person, effortlessly romantic. There are days, when Susan is angry at schoolteachers, or missing her seneschal’s dry wit, days when Susan cannot find even the most glorious sunset to be anything more than just glaring light in her tired eyes. But Lucy, no, every day Lucy watches the sun rise and lets that fill her. Easy thinks Susan, jealous, and she is wrong. 

It is not for years that she realizes how much effort is tucked into Lucy’s bright smiles. The joy is not a lie, the faith is not contrived, but it is built. Lucy pulls herself out of bed each morning. She watches the fires of the day climb and conquer the sky, and dares her world to be anything less than magical.

Susan tired of bullies before she and her siblings had even finished with the White Witch’s defeat. She will stand it no more in this world than she had in Narnia. For the cruelest bullies: she digs up their weakness, their secrets, and holds them hostage. The misled, the hurting, she approaches sidelong, with all the grace of a wise ruler, a diplomat’s best subtle words against a foreign agitator with borders along an important trade route. The followers she sweeps past, gathers up, binds to her own loyalties. They may be allowed to become her fine guard if they deign to learn kindness, or at least respect.

Susan joins the newspaper because extracurriculars look good, and if she is going to live in this world she is going to do it well. She finds she likes it. She rubs ink into her palms and feels almost at home. She hunts down quaint little school stories overzealously, like the detectives in the novels stacked by her bed, like a queen hunting down secrets at her court.

(Lucy contributes poetry to the arts section of the paper. Susan only reads them on weeks she is feeling brave, because, like all of Lucy, her poetry picks you up and takes you away). 

When Susan wakes up, these nights, dreaming of ink on her fingers, she doesn’t expect to find her desk at Cair Paravel. Or, when she does, she squeezes her eyes open and looks around at the newspaper room on submission night. The copy editor fumes quietly, a writer hyperventilates in a corner, another clatters away. An editor coaxes into the telephone, talking with their printer, negotiating for time. It is not quite a council of war, but it is hers. It is not quite a kingdom, but Susan’s still a child, after all. She has time to grow into this skin.

When Caspian’s horn calls them home, the Pevensies stand in the ruin of their palace. Thick, old trees, not saplings, not young wildflowers, grow over the graves of the petitioners Susan had never gotten to meet with, of the children who had written her letters in careful, blocky handwriting. When I grow up I want to be as beautiful as you. 

Susan, standing in ankle deep grass on the cracked flagstones of the home she had spent most of her life in, has the gangly, growing limbs of an adolescent. A horn’s call (her horn) is ringing in her bones, centuries too late. That call has always been ringing in her, really, shaking her hands, reverberating her lungs, since the day a queen tumbled back through a wardrobe and into a life she hadn’t missed.

Susan stands under a mound, in the ruins of a castle, on a battlefield. Her Narnia has grown out of itself, grown into itself; her subjects are gone, but there is an army at her feet who trusts her. She left, but they did not lose faith. Susan does not feel absolved. She feels guiltier than ever, to know they kept faith she didn’t deserve. She wonders if this is how Aslan feels about Lucy.

The very shape of the land has changed. Mounds stand over old broken tables and rivers have become deep chasms. Her body is the body of a growing child, and her heart is that of a widow twice over.

When Susan leaves Narnia for the last time, she steps back into a world where she has ten articles to review by Monday, an essay due the next week, and a mathematics test on Friday. She has dishes to do and Lucy to keep an eye on. She wants to weep for days, but instead she goes home, plucks a detective novel off her bedside table, and tries to remember where she left off.

Susan doesn’t cry, but she hardly sleeps. That call is still humming in her bones (it always will, even when she learns to call it by other names). Susan snaps at her lioness, her dryad, her scribe; her bully boys flee at her short temper. One of her friends finally takes her aside. “What’s going on, Su? You can tell me.”

She forgot people could give you kindnesses back. “I lost something important,” Susan says, and the tears finally start to fall.

She weeps into her friend’s shoulder while she murmurs comforting things. “I’m right here.”

You are, Susan thinks. And so am I.

There is wind in the treetops. They are only trees.

Susan was the chosen, the blessed, the promised. She does not want to be promised. She wants to promise, instead, to take the hands of brave friends and try to build something new. 

The only thing that will compare to this grief will happen years later, a train crash, a phone call to her flat to tell the awful news to the next of kin. Now, losing Narnia, these four are the only ones here who will remember that world. There is a loss in that. There is a fragility in that which terrifies.

After the crash, Susan will be the only one left to remember them.

Maybe it was a shunning and maybe it was a mercy, to leave Susan to grow old. She had had too many kingdoms ripped from her aching fingers to be willing to lose this one, so instead everything else she had was taken away.

Maybe it was an apology. Maybe a lion could better understand mourning the loss of a kingdom than the loss of siblings. Maybe he thought he was being kind. 

As Susan grows, her schoolmates stay in touch, young girls who grew in her shadows or strode in blazing light before her (both are strengths), the ones who walked with her and learned majesty from her older bones. She gets letters from her bullies, too, the ones she subverted through threats or kindnesses. Some are fathers, railway operators, preachers, bookshop cashiers. Her girls are mothers, some, or running libraries, charities, businesses from behind the throne; one is a butcher’s apprentice of all things, another battling her way towards a Ph.D.

One married a farmer’s boy with a warm smile and moved out into the country. Susan goes out to visit and they go walking through her fields and little copses of trees. The trees are only trees, and some of Susan’s heart will always break for that, but she watches her friend’s glowing face as she marks out the edges of her land, speaks with her hands. The trees are only trees, but they are hers.

Susan goes home by train, the country whisking by outside. She pours over notes, sketching article outlines in her notebook, deadlines humming in the back of her mind. Her pen flicks over the paper, her fingers stained with ink. This is hers.

Years later, Susan digs up old copies of her school papers. She goes through them, one by one, and reads each of Lucy’s poems.

Cross-legged on the floor, she cries, ugly sobs torn out of her, offered out to ghosts of sisters and brothers, parents, Narnian children grown old and buried under ancient trees, without her. Lucy’s poems take her away (they always do) and leave her weeping on her living room floor in her stockings.

Susan stacks the papers neatly, makes herself a mug of tea and goes outside. The trees are only trees. This is a curse. This is a blessing. She breathes deep.

Peter was the only one who understood as well as she did what it was to be the rock of other people’s worlds. She remembers Edmund every time rage swells in her stomach, every time she swallows that rage down and listens anyway.

On early mornings Susan rolls out of bed, all groans and grumbles, and scribbles down a thought or two about her latest article if anything percolated during the night. She does her make-up on her apartment’s little balcony. Susan watches the rising sun light the sky and dares her life to be anything other than hers. 

Companion to this post. 

(via lykoi)