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Every Night is Game Night is a weekly podcast dedicated to gamer’s games. We cover board games that have heavy strategy, awesome theme, and everything in between. The Idaho "Grinch" is back at it, The Bartlett poised to open and Golden Globes noms announced We almost put an Upworthy-style headline on this one: You won’t believe how sweet and resourceful these two young duct tape entrepreneurs are. Post Falls... The following is a comprehensive list of all physical Nintendo Switch game releases already in stores or available for pre-order. Digital only releases are not included as this list is meant for physical game collectors. This post only includes games that have been released in the U.S., though most of the games on this list should also have been released in Europe, Japan, and most other ... De horseracing startpagina biedt u een zeer bruikbaar overzicht van meer dan 600 verwijzingen naar de meest waardevolle informatie op het gebied van horseracing op internet. 15 Best Commuter Bikes, City Bikes, And E-Bikes You Can Ride In 2020 The unending rivalry between dogs and cats won't end today, but thanks to your debate we're going to at least find out which pet bests the other in a variety of categories. Here are your best ... Walk the Plank: One player from the current team will read one hint at a time to the other team.The other team can make one guess for each hint. If the other team guesses the answer they will receive survival items dependent on how many clues they needed to guess the correct answer (1 clue-3 items, 2 clues-2 items, 3 clues-3 items).

2020.09.27 07:54 Zelbinian Hidden zone sex

What this is: This is a weekly, curated listing of Kickstarter board game projects that are either:

All board game projects meeting those criteria will automatically be included, no need to ask. (The occasional non-board game project may also sneak in!)
Expect new lists each Sunday sometime between midnight and noon PST.
Ending Soon
Project Info Players Backers Min / Avg Pledge Ends Comments
Assault on the Marmot King Assault on the Marmot King is a flip-and-write game, in PnP format,of square puzzle, patterns and road building. // Has raised €2,235 of €250 so far. (~894%) ☑ 1 - 5 362 $2 / €6 Sep 28 kicktraq bgg
CH35S a 2-player, 20 min. war game for $1 // Has raised $1,878 of $35 so far. (~5366%) ☑ 2 362 $1 / $5 Sep 28 kicktraq
Atma: A Roleplaying Card Game A full-fledged RPG in 2 hours. For roleplaying novices and experts alike. // Has raised $29,556 of $20,000 so far. (~148%) ☑ 2 - 5 782 $15 / $38 Sep 28 kicktraq #rpg
Xmas PileUP A pocket-sized, Christmas-themed, stacking-dexterity game for the whole family. Featuring cute Christmas tree shaped meeples! // Has raised £8,181 of £1,000 so far. (~818%) ☑ 2 - 4 362 $13 / £23 Sep 29 kicktraq
WAY OF THE SAMURAI : Blood and Bushido A Solo Card Game of Samurai Fights! // Has raised €44,859 of €5,000 so far. (~897%) ☑ 1 1623 $11 / €28 Sep 29 kicktraq bgg #reprint #expansion
Gone Bunkers A card game for people who love war games and nuking their friends. Did we mention you are also going against robots & aliens? // Has raised $3,138 of $3,500 so far. (~90%) 2 - 6 50 $20 / $63 Sep 30 kicktraq
War and Peace 6th Edition The 6th edition of Mark McLaughlin's War and Peace // Has raised $50,627 of $22,000 so far. (~230%) ☑ 2 474 $39 / $107 Sep 30 kicktraq #newedition
Monsters on Board A spooky dice-drafting game with custom dice, 3D cardboard cars and colorful monster minis // Has raised $186,456 of $30,000 so far. (~622%) ☑ 1 - 4 2643 $54 / $71 Sep 30 kicktraq bgg
Rebellion A Social Deduction Party Game // Has raised $6,636 of $10,000 so far. (~66%) 6 - 17 59 $25 / $112 Sep 30 kicktraq
Cracker Games One giant cracker. Six brilliant games. Reusable, re-playable & plastic-free. The perfect addition to your Christmas table. // Has raised £7,852 of £2,000 so far. (~393%) ☑ varies 227 $13 / £35 Oct 01 kicktraq
RIFTFORCE Elegant deck construction and tense hand management packed in 1 box. A duel game from an experienced team with 3150 possible match ups. // Has raised €23,516 of €10,000 so far. (~235%) ☑ 2 806 $30 / €29 Oct 01 kicktraq bgg
Autofarmer: The card game A competitive card game about growing cannabis. Withstand nature and opponents in the merciless world of danky dank weed growers. // Has raised $12,506 of $15,000 so far. (~83%) 2 - 4 126 $12 / $99 Oct 01 kicktraq bgg #expansion #reprint
Streets An urban tile laying game for 1-5 players from the designer of Villagers. // Has raised £256,108 of £29,500 so far. (~868%) ☑ 1 - 5 6709 $49 / £38 Oct 01 kicktraq bgg
The Pet Cemetery Chain cards together to outwit, outplay, and race your friends to the end in this light 30-min pet monster themed board game. // Has raised C$18266 of C$10000 so far. (~183%) ☑ 2 - 6 364 $30 / C$50 Oct 01 kicktraq bgg
Philosophia: Floating World An epic sandbox adventure set in feudal Japan. Philosophia: Floating World is a fully simultaneous deckbuilder for 1 to 6 players. // Has raised £63,336 of £24,000 so far. (~264%) ☑ 1 - 6 843 $88 / £75 Oct 01 kicktraq bgg
Finger Your Friends! YOU ARE THE GAME! Tell awesome stories, answer awkward questions, accept ridiculous challenges & Finger Your Friends! // Has raised $635 of $25 so far. (~2540%) ☑ 4 - 6 21 $25 / $30 Oct 01 kicktraq #nsfw
LG TACTICS - Strategy-Lite Card Game The easy to learn battle game with a clean fantasy style // Has raised $7,306 of $1,250 so far. (~584%) ☑ 1 - ? 292 $15 / $25 Oct 01 kicktraq
Flourish A delightful game about crafting gardens from the creators of Everdell. In English, German, and French. // Has raised $116,989 of $15,000 so far. (~780%) ☑ 1 - 7 3107 $39 / $38 Oct 01 kicktraq bgg
Twisted's Monstrous Marvels Monumental miniatures hand-sculpted and made in Australia. // Has raised A$17,403 of A$6,000 so far. (~290%) ☑ - 121 $37 / A$144 Oct 01 kicktraq #minis
Devil in the Wilderness Get in on this game of witch hunting in Colonial America.. where you can be the hunter, the hunted... or both! // Has raised $3,117 of $1,500 so far. (~208%) ☑ 2 - 5 35 $15 / $89 Oct 01 kicktraq
Tomorrow Dies Today A strategy board game with 3 game modes: Syndicate (Solo/Cooperative), Mayhem (Team vs Team), and Cutthroat (Competitive/Co-Op Hybrid) // Has raised $18,861 of $15,000 so far. (~126%) ☑ 1 - 6 173 $65 / $109 Oct 01 kicktraq bgg
The Reckoners: Steelslayer An expansion to the cooperative board game based on the books by Brandon Sanderson. // Has raised $278,616 of $50,000 so far. (~557%) ☑ 1 - 6 3171 $59 / $88 Oct 01 kicktraq bgg #expansion
Carbon City Zero: World Edition Carbon City Zero: World Edition is a collaborative deck-building game, in which players develop a sustainable city. // Has raised £17,286 of £4,000 so far. (~432%) ☑ 1 - 4 565 $20 / £31 Oct 02 kicktraq bgg #newedition
Code On Code On is a problem-solving card game that involves cracking the genetic code! More details at: http://www.cognition-games.com // Has raised €6,262 of €6,000 so far. (~104%) ☑ 2 - 4 126 $22 / €50 Oct 02 kicktraq
Divine Harem Card Game Let your lust filled needs run wild in this fun and sexy card game, where you must beat your opponents to build a Divine Harem. // Has raised £48,631 of £500 so far. (~9726%) ☑ 2 - 4 566 $32 / £86 Oct 02 kicktraq #nsfw
Oak & Steel a 3.5x game set in the American Old West // Has raised $6,124 of $12,000 so far. (~51%) 2 - 4 149 $45 / $41 Oct 02 kicktraq bgg #take2
Hedgeways Lay your hedges as field boundaries in this timeless game. Who can win by enclosing more land? // Has raised £1,594 of £2,000 so far. (~80%) 2 48 $34 / £33 Oct 02 kicktraq
Embarcadero Build the city of San Francisco on the hulls of abandoned ships during the California Gold Rush. // Has raised $40,671 of $5,000 so far. (~813%) ☑ 1 - 5 739 $60 / $55 Oct 02 kicktraq bgg
As You 'Wich A Hilarious Game for Sandwich Lovers // Has raised $23,814 of $10,000 so far. (~238%) ☑ 3 - 8 558 $20 / $43 Oct 02 kicktraq
FUTURES Imagine and share your stories of alternative future worlds. // Has raised C$5340 of C$2500 so far. (~214%) ☑ 1 - 8 241 $19 / C$22 Oct 03 kicktraq
Name That Puppy A card game for all ages where you compete to pick the best name for different adorable puppies. // Has raised $621 of $500 so far. (~124%) ☑ ? 22 $20 / $28 Oct 03 kicktraq
New This Week
Project Info Players Backers Min / Avg Pledge Ends Comments
'Dogs & Pigs' - 5,000-year-old board game PIECES The game was found intact (minus the board), but NOBODY KNOWS HOW TO PLAY IT // Has raised $24 of $45 so far. (~53%) ? 22 $1 / $1 Oct 23
Awakening of the Gods Memory Board Game // Has raised €71 of €300 so far. (~24%) 1 - 4 3 $41 / €24 Nov 24
Barking Spiders Card Game A card game created for the whole family to enjoy while locked in together breathing each other's fumes. // Has raised $1,425 of $22,000 so far. (~6%) ? 26 $20 / $55 Oct 23
BOCK HERO A beautiful card battle game - with a DRINKING twist - featuring 4 unique factions, and more to come! // Has raised C$1549 of C$9000 so far. (~17%) 2 - 4 29 $23 / C$53 Oct 28
Cactus Town Tension! Chaos! Fun! A fast-playing action programming game for 2-4 players. // Has raised €61,459 of €25,000 so far. (~246%) ☑ 2 - 4 1249 $30 / €49 Oct 20 bgg
Covid-19 Card Game A card game that promotes proper hygiene precautionary measures necessary for the prevention of the Covid-19 virus. // Has raised NZ$1 of NZ$1,500 so far. (~0%) 2 - 6 1 $10 / NZ$1 Oct 13
Crash Octopus Collect the treasures and escape the giant octopus! A super fun, flicking dexterity game from Japan. // Has raised ¥4,050,309 of ¥500,000 so far. (~810%) ☑ 2 - 4 744 $31 / ¥5,444 Oct 27 bgg
Cybersplit Sci-Fi\Cyberpunk resin miniatures for painters, collectors, and tabletop games.28mm, 54mm, 75mm // Has raised C$5442 of C$6000 so far. (~91%) - 56 $16 / C$97 Oct 22 #minis
D12 Domino Deck Double 12 dominoes set in top quality playing card form. The classic casual game for all ages. Portable and convenient. // Has raised £101 of £2,500 so far. (~4%) varies 5 $18 / £20 Oct 01
Dangerous A newly localized card game from a great indie publisher in Japan. // Has raised $1,032 of $500 so far. (~206%) ☑ 2 - 4 61 $18 / $17 Oct 09 bgg
Dinosaur World and Dinosaur Island: Rawr 'n Write Dinosaur World and Dinosaur Island: Rawr 'n Write are two stand-alone games set in the Dinosaur Island Universe! // Has raised $467,423 of $25,000 so far. (~1870%) ☑ 2 - 4 5849 $30 / $80 Oct 16 bgg
DOG CATCHER - THE CARD GAME Fast Paced Trick taking card game with a lovable twist – DOGS. // Has raised $1,605 of $1,250 so far. (~128%) ☑ 2 - 6 35 $20 / $46 Oct 22
Down the Old Rail Line, vol. 1 A single-player journaling game about a bike journey through a fantastical world // Has raised $405 of $100 so far. (~405%) ☑ 1 26 $3 / $16 Oct 09
DRINKIT For each deck : 2 games - 10 ways to play // Has raised €412 of €2,000 so far. (~21%) 3+ 17 $14 / €24 Nov 24 #lolwut #take2
Dungeon Universalis (Second Printing) Dungeon Universalis: the definitive dungeon crawler. // Has raised €349,354 of €80,000 so far. (~437%) ☑ 1 - 6 2253 $41 / €155 Oct 19 bgg #reprint
Galactic Era an innovative, epic space strategy boardgame about Darkness and Light // Has raised €22,426 of €17,700 so far. (~127%) ☑ 1 - 6 294 $69 / €76 Oct 25 bgg #take2
Ganjifa Play Trick-taking game with Indian-style designed cards, temple figures, and wooden chips. Train your memory and tactical skills. // Has raised $2,398 of $7,000 so far. (~34%) 2 - 4 31 $54 / $77 Nov 05 bgg
Gatefall: Lost in the North Woods Expansion The first expansion to Gatefall, with characters created by artist Alexei Konev. // Has raised $30,897 of $35,000 so far. (~88%) ? 683 $39 / $45 Oct 22 bgg #expansion
GEMJI > Limitless Tabletop Experience Multigame System Ultra-compact hybrid magnetic play system that now does 30+ different games and is a 3D constructor, too. But also so much more! SUB! // Has raised $18,336 of $8,000 so far. (~229%) ☑ 1 - 18 287 $10 / $64 Oct 23
Good Strong Hands RPG A darkly whimsical game about saving your fantastical world. // Has raised $7,265 of $3,000 so far. (~242%) ☑ ? 159 $20 / $46 Oct 22 #rpg
Gunslinger A card game of quick-draw duels and survival // Has raised $721 of $20,000 so far. (~4%) ? 12 $25 / $60 Oct 21
Hogs Of War The Miniatures Game A 1-4 Player Tabletop Miniatures Game with Tech-Tree, Hidden Movement and Base-Building mechanics. Solo and Co-op Modes included! // Has raised £94,878 of £18,000 so far. (~527%) ☑ 1 - 4 1026 $88 / £92 Oct 15 bgg
Hybrids A competitive strategy board game featuring disgustingly cute, genetically pliable Blibs. // Has raised $2,032 of $38,000 so far. (~5%) 3 - 6 21 $60 / $97 Oct 25 bgg
Kingdom (2nd Edition) Build your community together. Fight for what you believe in… or watch it burn. A game about communities by the author of Microscope // Has raised $17,840 of $2,500 so far. (~714%) ☑ 2 - 5 638 $10 / $28 Oct 13 #rpg #newedition
LINEHAULER Become King of the Road with the Linehauler Board gameBy Aussie Road Train // Has raised A$900 of A$28,000 so far. (~3%) 1 - 4 13 $36 / A$69 Oct 22
Lord of the Chords: Bach for an Encore! The Punniest Music Theory Card Game - Kickstarter-Exclusive Foil Cards - $230K+ Previously Raised - 6000 First Edition Copies SOLD OUT // Has raised S$56,621 of S$15,000 so far. (~377%) ☑ 2 - 4 754 $38 / S$75 Oct 22 bgg #reprint
Lose your in-laws! The card game that keeps your in-laws out, especially your mother-in-law!! // Has raised €1,278 of €14,100 so far. (~9%) 2 - 6 37 $23 / €35 Oct 23
Lost To Time Embark on an epic adventure and gain unimaginable treasure in this exhilarating and innovative real-time co-operative board game! // Has raised C$13557 of C$27000 so far. (~50%) 2 - 4 226 $49 / C$60 Oct 17 bgg
Machina Arcana ~ To Eternity A dark and immersive experience awaits you and your group of explorers. Travel the unknown, face cosmic horrors and fight for survival! // Has raised $265,568 of $30,000 so far. (~885%) ☑ 1 - 4 3519 $25 / $75 Oct 15 bgg #expansion
Madoshi: Priests of the Sun and Moon A 1 to 2 player pattern-matching game of Japanese magic and elements. // Has raised $1,647 of $3,000 so far. (~55%) 1 - 2 61 $15 / $27 Oct 11 bgg
MAGDA --The Card Game Travel the Universe in this Solo-Play Card Game inspired by 80's sci-fi thrillers. But beware, your AI has grown sentient--and deadly. // Has raised $5,714 of $3,000 so far. (~190%) ☑ 1 160 $20 / $36 Oct 22 bgg
March on the Drina - WW1 World War One strategy board game covering Balkan Peninsula Theater. // Has raised $4,117 of $5,350 so far. (~77%) 2 - 4 75 $55 / $55 Oct 21 bgg
Martial Art: Clans The great clans of Japan rise for war in this tactical card game. // Has raised $4,461 of $3,000 so far. (~149%) ☑ 2 - 4 193 $9 / $23 Oct 22 #expansion
Midnight Pig A game about strategy, survival, monsters and murder. // Has raised £1,342 of £3,000 so far. (~45%) 3 - 6 32 $32 / £42 Oct 25
Mother of Frankenstein An immersive puzzle game based on the life of Mary Shelley, author of Frankenstein // Has raised $49,056 of $33,000 so far. (~149%) ☑ 1 - 6 400 $10 / $123 Oct 24 bgg
Neko Harbour: The Card Game A strategy card game that brings 2-4 players to see penguins in Antarctica! // Has raised €5,444 of €5,000 so far. (~109%) ☑ 2 - 4 250 $30 / €22 Oct 20 bgg
Night Parade of a Hundred Yokai Raise an army of supernatural beings to haunt the islands of Japan in this asymmetrical engine building game! // Has raised $35,865 of $10,000 so far. (~359%) ☑ 1 - 4 700 $50 / $51 Oct 15 bgg
Paranoid The brand new party game bringing together secrets, silliness and a healthy dose of Paranoia! // Has raised £411 of £15,000 so far. (~3%) ? 20 $20 / £21 Nov 01
Pets Gone Shady - Card Game A card game that lets you throw octopuses, deal with naked turtles and avoid hangry hamsters! // Has raised $22,155 of $12,500 so far. (~177%) ☑ 2 - 5 449 $20 / $49 Oct 16 #newedition
REKD The Game The new party game for shameless people // Has raised $371 of $3,800 so far. (~10%) 3+ 10 $19 / $37 Oct 16 #lolwut
Return to Planet Apocalypse Two new expansions for the renowned Planet Apocalypse boardgame PLUS a sourcebook to bring the Apocalypse to your D&D 5e campaign // Has raised $468,334 of $50,000 so far. (~937%) ☑ 1 - 5 3345 $69 / $140 Oct 05 bgg #rpg #expansion #reprint
Scrub's Center for American Medicine A card drafting and line management tabletop game to operate the most profitable Ward at SCAM. Everyone is valued at SCAM! // Has raised $1,188 of $10,000 so far. (~12%) 2 - 4 21 $25 / $57 Nov 08 bgg
Set 🔥 Watch: Swords of the Coin ⚔️ The highly anticipated stand alone expansion to our acclaimed 1-4 player cooperative game, Set a Watch // Has raised $126,525 of $20,000 so far. (~633%) ☑ 1 - 4 2862 $28 / $44 Oct 15 bgg #expansion
Shaolia 2nd print & expansion A fast-paced, dueling game of fantasy kingdom building filled with deadly strategy & clever tactics // Has raised $38,299 of $20,000 so far. (~191%) ☑ 1 - 4 647 $25 / $59 Oct 23 bgg #reprint #expansion
SLEEP TIGHT Drag your fears into the light and escape the Sandman in this action card game by waking up and saving your soul before dawn // Has raised $5,321 of $3,500 so far. (~152%) ☑ 2 - 4 302 $20 / $18 Oct 21 bgg
Song of Steel, the miniature game 28mm miniature set, made of metal, core book, cards and tokens, 2 initial races // Has raised €767 of €13,200 so far. (~6%) 2+ 13 $34 / €59 Oct 16
SouthSide Let's take a trip thru the SouthSide with this sick and twisted party game of sex, drugs, and your mom. // Has raised $161 of $19,615 so far. (~1%) 4 - 10 5 $40 / $32 Nov 24 #lolwut
Stage 3 4 player co-op game. You play as a health worker to slow the spread of infections and limit the number of patients heading to the ICU // Has raised A$2,953 of A$28,000 so far. (~11%) 4 32 $50 / A$92 Oct 22
Temple of Caelum Only by uniting forces can the Heroes of Caelum and the Daughters of Hell stop this destruction and save our worlds! // Has raised $475 of $35,000 so far. (~1%) 2 - 4 12 $70 / $40 Oct 18
Ten Suns: Dawn of China You are invincible, but your power is fading as time passes. Solidify your authority among the Gods of China before you grow too weak. // Has raised S$13,365 of S$9,000 so far. (~148%) ☑ 2 - 6 346 $20 / S$39 Oct 06 bgg
THE 7th CITADEL After The 7th Continent, explore the world of the Collapsing Lands! // Has raised €1,527,574 of €300,000 so far. (~509%) ☑ 1 - 4 21599 $81 / €71 Oct 15 bgg
The Dragon & Flagon: The Brew That Is True A freshly brewed expansion for Dragon & Flagon! // Has raised $11,592 of $3,000 so far. (~386%) ☑ 2 - 8 288 $30 / $40 Oct 09 bgg #expansion
The Heist: Card Game The Heist is a fun social deduction game for up to 8 players. take on your role as a cop or robber and complete your objective. // Has raised $3 of $2,500 so far. (~0%) 4 - 8 3 $12 / $1 Oct 31
The Landing: Gallipoli, 1915 A quick solo historical game of the first day of the Australian and New Zealand Corps' amphibious assault at Gallipoli. // Has raised $3,404 of $300 so far. (~1135%) ☑ 1 104 $25 / $33 Oct 08 bgg
The Thing - The Boardgame The official board game inspired by the 1982 movie The Thing. // Has raised €208,287 of €42,000 so far. (~496%) ☑ 1 - 8 2726 $93 / €76 Oct 14 bgg
Need moar Kickstarter goodness? Check out...
Footnotes Tip Jar If you enjoy these lists, maybe toss me a buck now and then. Signing up for a free AirTable account via my referral link can help, too. Plus, it's swell!
submitted by Zelbinian to boardgames [link] [comments]


2020.09.24 02:37 AligatorTears Hidden zone sex

If you've ever travelled overseas, you've probably experienced the shock of discovering that their are entire countries of people who have vastly different values and perspectives on life to you. I want to propose that there is a similar cultural divide between women and men, and it is a misunderstanding of this difference in cultural experiences that is the cause of most frustrations of communication across the gender divide. If you can apply the points I'm about to make to your daily life, you should notice not only an improvement in your romantic life, but in all of your interactions with the opposite sex. I know that's a big claim, and I plan to deliver. So buckle up because this is going to be quite a ride.
Now I want to clarify that I am talking about cultural differences between genders and not inherent differences between sexes. Boys and girls pick up cultural cues from their parents and studies have shown that parent responses to gendered play is a primary predictor for early gendered behavioral differences. This is important to mention because a lot of what I am going to touch on is based on English speaking cultural observations and does not necessarily translate accurately across every society. Societies will also have gender non-conforming individuals as well as people raised in alternative cultures, but a general understanding of the cultures men and women exist within will also help in understanding the experience of women and men who struggle to fit in amongst their own gender expectations.
From a young age, boys tend toward dramatic/destructive play and girls tend toward constructive/parallel play and this develops into how we each understand our hierarchical position amongst our peers as adults. In more concrete terms, boy break things and race each other. Girls talk and play that game where you clap your hands in complex patterns while singing the song that goes with it. As adults, men are in primarily adversarial relationships with other men and compete for dominance through establishing one-up/one-down interactions. Women compete for dominance through status which is established through relationships and support of the group.

Let's look at male/male interactions first. The one-up/one-down pecking order is fairly simple. In a context where social hierarchy is not yet established, men will seek to establish their position through one-on-one interactions that place one man above or below the other. Gone are the days of "my day could beat up your dad" or "last one to the fence is a loser", instead men will primarily compete to outdo each other on knowledge about a topic, telling better stories, or appearing more successful. A subtle one-upping comment might be "it must be so difficult for you trying to get by on a single income", and a defensive comment might be "oh no, we're actually doing quite well thanks to my investments and I'm getting to spend more time with the kids while I recover. I'll be back at work in no time." Notice that the one-upping comment could be taken to be an expression of sincere concern. Men will tend to read ambiguous comments like this as attacks rather than expressions of sympathy if they are coming from somebody they perceive to be aware of hierarchical competition (specifically other men). One of the common stereotypes is that men don't like asking for directions. Unpackaged further, men specifically dislike asking MEN for directions. A man who asks for help puts himself one-down in relation to the person being asked, and this is made more uncomfortable by it being a stranger where hierarchy is not established and there is an expectation that the person being spoken to will have awareness of the hierarchical implications.
Looking at other male/male interactions, another one-up/one-down transaction is in conversations about technical topics. Open any reddit post on any topic and you'll find male commenters will be the ones picking holes in an argument, questioning the validity of academic sources, and producing counter arguments. Even in conversations with experts in a field, men will establish a conflict of ideas and then allow the expert to display their authority on the matter through rebuttal. It is important to note that men who are engaging these one-up/one-down contests are often seeking to establish their position in a hierarchy, not necessarily trying to be the top of the hierarchy.
In situations where hierarchy is already established, such as a close friendship between men, there can also be discomfort if a man disrupts the hierarchy by saying something that puts himself one-down. A man who tells his friends that he feels incompetent and worried about his future will often be met with quick fix solutions and reassurances that he is fine rather than engagement about why he is having those feelings or sympathy for his situation. Even talking about how sad you are that your pet died can trigger a competing story about the respondent's pet who also died and how their grief was even worse, rather than sympathy for your loss.

Now Let's look and female/female interactions. Women establish hierarchy through connection and collaboration rather than one-up/one-down competitions. In the example of asking for directions, when a woman is asking another woman for directions it is a collaboration rather than a competition. The collaboration establishes a degree of connection and can often result in questions about what the visitor is doing in the area, a display of sympathy and understanding of what it is like trying to find your way around a new area, confirmation that this university/neighborhood is terribly designed and the roads make no sense.
So while women are also interested in establishing their position in a hierarchy of other women, they achieve this through connections and support of other women. Even their power plays are performed in the guise of connection building and collaboration. A woman who approaches another woman in a professional context and begins asking a lot of personal questions may be perceived as pushing for unearned intimacy and therefore be viewed as intrusive. This intrusive forced intimacy may be resisted because it implies a stronger connection than she is entitled to. Conflicts over intimacy levels between women will often be resolved through topic shifts and friendly banter. In group settings, women can perform power plays by displaying elevated status by displaying an intimate connection with a higher status woman.
One of the most potent examples of this power play is the shift from winter to spring fashion in an extended social setting like school or the workplace. There will generally be a group of women who are understood to be popular. Those within their in group will know the day that the benchmark group have decided will be the first day of spring. A woman who wears spring fashion before the popular group will demonstrate a degree of hubris which can negatively impact her social standing and result in social exclusion, but if she manages to guess the correct day to start wearing spring fashion then she has displayed insider knowledge and will have her social standing elevated as other women push to have close connections with high status women. Women who are not wearing spring fashion within a day of the popular group declaring spring to have sprung can face social isolation as they are displaying a disconnection from the high status women.
Many women dislike this competition just as many men dislike one-upmanship, but these are the methods that these relative cultures use for establishing hierarchy and a refusal to participate results in an assumption of low status in the larger group but can become the basis of identity in small anti-culture subcultures. Even these subcultural groups can eventually become defined by similarly gendered hierarchical structures as they grow in size.

So now that we have established a very basic understanding of intragender cultural engagement, it is time to get to the bit that is relevant to what most people reading this will want to know about: How does this affect communication between men and women?

Let's first look at how male assumption affect their approach to talking to women. So if a guy who hasn't thought about any of this is approaching a woman to try to get her number, he's going to be experiencing all the same internal problems of asking a stranger for directions, and then some. He's basically about to tell a stranger that he sees them as valuable (putting himself one-down) and then giving her the opportunity to go one-up by rejecting him. For a guy who is at a club on his own, being two down in a single interaction can feel devastating and it is enough to put him off ever approaching in the first place.
Of the guys who do approach, we've all heard the horror stories right? Guys who try to use negging to one-up the woman on approach as though insulting her to prop up their own ego is somehow going to make you seem more attractive. Worse, there are guys who will try to one-up the woman in the opener by framing their proposition like they are doing the woman a favor, and then they will lose their shit when she politely tells them "no" and call her every profanity they can think of in some desperate attempt to rebuild their own shattered ego that can't handle a simple rejection. Women have literally been murdered for being insensitive to a man's delicate feelings when turning him down. Maybe that particular reaction isn't especially common, but if you are approaching a woman, I can guarantee you she will be thinking about guys like that if you open the same way they do. What do you think a shit test is if it isn't a woman who's had some experience testing how you'll handle being one-down with a woman?
So what is the solution? It is simple. If you are cold approaching a woman, think about how your actions would be perceived in a female/female cultural context rather than a male/male cultural context. She's not looking to establish you as one-up or one-down. The conflict she is going to perceive is more a question of intimacy vs intrusion. If you come on too strong, escalate too early, ask too many questions or share too much about yourself early on then you are going to be perceived as intruding. If you try to win points with big stories and info dumps she may act interested while scanning the room for exists, or she may absolutely love it. But, if you try to one-up her when she shares a story or opinion, you may find that you are actually communicating a rebuke for intrusion followed by an alternate offer of intimacy. This can be confusing for her and if she wants to experience intimacy with you she will begin to feel that she has to sit quietly and listen to you monologue... if that gets boring for her, she won't grab the flood for herself and tell her own stories again, she'll instead withdraw intimacy and start looking for the exits again.
An additional suggestion is that a completely cold approach, while good for a low stakes skills practice, isn't the most effective method of seduction. Seduction works much better if you are already known to the woman and her friends as somebody who is desirable or high status. A woman's status is largely determined buy the relationships she forms. If you already have a high status position in a social group, then any woman who is wanting to improve her social standing in the group will display interest in you to her peers as a way of reinforcing her membership in the group, and may view being seen with you as a way of improving her status. In a situation like this, you then have to be mindful of protecting your own status because hooking up with low status women can impact your desirability just as much as hooking up with high status women can. This is where having a lot of female friends becomes useful. If you are constantly seen in the company of desirable women, that can improve your desirability with other women. Don't stress about being "in the friend zone". Just be a good friend and help your female friends improve their social status in the female hierarchy and the women who want to force an appearance of intimacy with your friend and going to be fighting for your attention.

Now let's look at some problems that face women who are approaching men. If you though men approaching women was hard, imagine trying to balance an internal intimacy vs intrusion paradigm when approaching somebody who is going to block your offerings of intimacy to point score because they are subconsciously trying to establish a hierarchy position while trying not to let on their surprise at being approached while also checking the room for hidden cameras. It is way easier to sit at the bar and wait for thirsty guys to come and show you magic tricks and insult your hair. She's going to be wading through sewage but at least she won't feel like she is intruding.
In heavily male dominated social contexts such as most corporate business encounters, women have a tendency to speak less than men but they are perceived by men as doing most of the talking. Part of this is that when they do talk, they are likely to need to spend more time establishing credibility to offset the fact that they will frequently interpret being one-upped to be a shut down of intimacy and will back off so they have to start from a disadvantaged position when they are given the floor because they don't have established credibility from shutting down their opposition and establishing credibility but interrupting other speakers. In addition, in order to simply be allowed to complete their statement without interruption the need to preface them with a statement of humility to acknowledge their low hierarchical status within the group such as "this is just an my opinion and I'm sure others may feel differently but...". All of this because they are have not been socialized to engage in this style of conversation.
Women who are wanting to break into male dominated contexts can benefit from being aware of the constant one-up/one-down battle men are engaging in during all of their interactions. It isn't often going to be culturally appropriate for women to pay this type of game and doing so inexpertly can have severe repercussions. To break into these types of context, it can be necessary to practice this style of one-up/one-down interaction with male friends and participating in the work culture in a more masculine way.

So just to recap:
Men and women establish hierarchies within same sex groups in different ways.
Men compete with each other to establish their individual merit and position in the pecking order while women establish intimacy to promote cooperative engagement.
Men can improve their strike rate with women by understanding how women will read the interaction and working to mirror and escalate levels of intimacy rather than trying to treat seduction as a competition or test of manliness, yet also taking steps to position themselves in high status positions in mixed groups to become socially desirable.
Women can improve their experience in male dominated fields by understanding the constant conflict that men are constantly subjecting each other to and participating in subtle one-upping behavior to establish dominance in the workplace in order to be taken seriously during key moments. It can also help to understand that what can feel like sexual discrimination and mansplaining is actually men treating you the same way they treat each other, and the acceptable response is to do the same thing right back without taking it personally.

Those who made it this far, congratulations!

Now I'd like to heard from you.
Would you like to have a manly one-upmanship contest by disputing any of the points I've made with a counterclaim or dismissive remark? I recommend attacking my excessive use of large words to sound clever or finding a single spelling error to mock to show I'm not as clever as I think. Referencing "studies" that prove me wrong without linking them is also a valid strategy for one-upping.
Is this information new or helpful to you? Does it make sense? Have you thought of a way you could apply it in your own approach?
Can you think of any personal situations of your own where you can observe this kind of gendered interplay resulting in a miscommunication? How would you handle that situation differently using this information to get a better result?
submitted by AligatorTears to seduction [link] [comments]


2020.09.24 01:26 Langston1113 Sex hidden zone

College Fuck Toys (pt 5): Celine I posted a preview of Celine a while back but didn’t finish the actual story because I couldn’t locate her Eros ad anymore. Coincidentally, it had just been taken down, and Eros doesn't cache their ads.
THIS IS ABOUT CONTRASTS
It is not meant to be an attack on Celine in any way. I enjoyed her very much and wish I could get the later version of her because she only looks better. The contrast is between how some of the girls portray themselves on their ad vs. who or WHAT they are in person. This series is about college-aged escorts and earlier I made the distinction between the ones who were simply in that age bracket vs. the ones who were actual students.
At the time I had her, she was 19 or 20 years old. I was going to be in Ann Arbor for the day on business, so I thought I could stop in on a young something before driving back up north. I had found her ad the night before on Eros using the "College Girls" filter at the top of the page, and it captures just about everything I've been describing in this series of posts.
https://preview.redd.it/4x7nyy5quzo51.png?width=550&format=png&auto=webp&s=a6ebb15676668dd42ceef0728cc84bfbb8cef7fe
They all portray themselves as artistic, free-spirited, and sophisticated. But the rules of the game still apply - more so, in fact, for these college students looking to make extra money to cover school expenses. In person and using the right approach, they quickly turn into fuck toys.
My guess is that Celine was a party girl who was already hooking up with random guys and figured she might as well get paid for it. Her ad being on Eros meant she knew her worth and knew which clientele to target.
HOW SHE DESCRIBED HERSELF
Here’s what was posted on her original Eros ad:
Bonjour! You may call me Céline. My petite frame belies a stately presence; some might call me ethereal, even aloof, but when I hide my ethnically ambiguous features behind deep-chocolate tresses, I'm not being coy, but merely bashful. I have a lithe physicality; light on my feet, with supple and shapely curves, and a firmly rounded tail. Nothing excites me more than a sincere gentleman with class and discerning taste. My favorite thing in life is the mystery of it's infinite possibilities. I've been a muse, a mistress, a mosaic of exhilarating memories...What I desire to be is a blank canvas on which you paint your fantasy. Allow yourself the pleasure of completing a masterpiece. My private art lessons will open new vistas of experience waiting to be discovered. After all the creative escape you're seeking is found within the simple acceptance of it's opportunity. Time is truly the most valuable thing a man can spend, so don't allow another moment to come between us.
I also found this in another ad:
Well dressed, well mannered, well spoken, and well traveled. I love to laugh and can keep up with an athletic conversation. An INTP with an IQ of nearly 130 and a dry sense of humor. Barely 20*, but carry myself with a maturity beyond my years. My unique Eurasian background lends to my racially ambiguous appearance. Behind closed doors I have a naughty coy demeanor, borderline kittenish. I pair complementary with a slightly more dominant partner. Elegant, vibrant, with an unbeatable eagerness to please. I could fulfill your true trophy girlfriend fantasy. My non-negotiable investments are as stated...*
SHE POSTED HER IQ ON HER AD!?! 🤣🤣🤣
This is EXACTLY what I mean. They go out of their way to let you know how intelligent and sophisticated they are, yet are down for whatever. They will travel 45 min to the burbs in order to be used by a older gent with all sorts of kinks. Remember Chanel? I'm just saying - "Contrasts."
She is definitely a beautiful girl.
Here's "sophomore Celine" around the time of our encounter:

https://preview.redd.it/uz2flkisuzo51.png?width=864&format=png&auto=webp&s=91297923d900c1a7cb377736064d5ffc35efc293

And here's the "veteran Celine" more recently:
https://preview.redd.it/i18m34vtuzo51.png?width=864&format=png&auto=webp&s=862ce50326140d1776e15e86d5000d5fa03fc2d6
Her new rates:
https://preview.redd.it/gu1u46io40p51.jpg?width=939&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=7fede58b112b3b648ed0563ed6fcade186fc54cb
HOW WAS SHE A “FUCK TOY?”
In the other installments, I defined these as naive girls who didn’t know their monetary value and had given themselves over to be fucked, usually by older men and however it pleased him, sometimes surrendering more of themselves than they had planned or were initially comfortable with.
Her description of herself was exaggerated, which isn't a shock. Although she was composed, her 20-year-old self still came through. She reminded me a lot of Sofia back in New York whose own ad called for “men over 40.” These girls try too hard. After all that lofty talk, she came off as pedestrian over text.
Yes, the advertising definitely works. Because she was on Eros and had all that lofty content, not on Escortbabylon doing $80 short-sessions, I approached her differently and treated her more daintily, at least initially.
What was true is that she liked to get fucked.
MY REVIEW
Screening: She asked me for a selfie long after we had booked the encounter, as I was headed to her. She probably has a more extensive screening process now.
Arrival and intro: She was at an apartment. I couldn’t figure out if it was off-campus student housing or if it was her own place which she shared roommates; nobody else was there. It was most likely the same place as in the non-glamorous ad pics. We chatted for about 15 min. about art and stuff, just to get comfortable, but she’s done this quite a lot and knew how unwind. Off to the bedroom which was quite unglamorous (yes, it's a word Mr. Spell-checker) and only the bare essentials. She had a twin bed.
Great kisser: This was very impressive. I’m talking Hollywood rom-com style passionate kissing - grabbing your hair, neck, etc. Not many young escorts kiss well. Probably only her and Ava were young escorts who were great kissers.
Round 1: I ran the gamut of positions and my typical routine. DATY (after taking a tour of her body from north to south), 69 + BBBJ (delicious; nothing like that college girl bod), an finally Doggystyle (she put the condom on me while we were still in 69 then we seamlessly transitioned to it). No hair-pulling or any of that. But she began responding to the more aggressive sex. I erupted and we took a break.
[Intermission]: This isn't meant as a big complaint but a detail that set the tone for what came next. She left the room to use the bathroom and I was there by myself for several minutes. My concern was that I wouldn't get a second finish which she had promised earlier. When she came back, she offered me some weed - her latest ad says she's a non-smoker - which I politely declined. To my relief, we were back at it again to finish out my hour, and THIS is when she became a fuck toy.
Round 2: We began with missionary and lots of great kissing. After switching to doggystyle, I went back to where we left off with the more aggressive pace and once again I noticed her responding. I was actually TRYING my best to bust another load. I was conscious of the time so I pounded away vigorously, but nothing going. I eventually noticed that she had essentially just conceded to being a piece of meat. And this got me aroused.
THERE GOES "MISS IQ SCORE OF 130."
When I’m pounding one of my ultra-GFEs, it’s usually a “WE are fucking” type of thing. But with these fuck toys, it’s clearly a “ME fucking them” or “she is GETTING FUCKED” type of situation. What made Celine different that night is there was a hint that she took pleasure in it, or was used to it – from some clients but not most. It’s because she was taken off-guard somewhat but then adjusted to it. That’s not much of a surprise, except when you consider that contrast once again. There goes “Miss IQ score of 130.”
What I recall best about this encounter is the switching back and forth between doggy and missionary in a mad rush. And now came the hair-pulling. I was pumping her like a machine trying to beat the clock. But there was no protest from her about me having gone past the time.
What a difference it is when go from being clock-watching "sex providers" to mutual fuck-partners and then to being submitted and given over to you. When she laid down flat on her chest, face-down/ass-up, hands sprawled forward and face hidden under her disheveled hair, it was clear that she was in the zone. "PLAT, PLAT, PLAT, PLAT!!!" - the sound of blasting those ass cheeks.
I finally blew my load in the bag and was left huffing and puffing. Pleasurable, yes, very much so; but also a relief.
CONCLUSION
Celine is an absolutely gorgeous girl! She looks even better since my encounter and I almost didn't recognize her if not for the text history, because she uses the same number. I can't say enough about that lovely college-aged body. And I'm glad that she turned into a fuck toy near the end of our encounter.
But I must admit that at the time, I wasn't all that excited about her as an option and didn't contact her again. She didn’t compare to the other options I had in value, even at $400/hr.
  • Nevaeh was also 45 min away but offered identical features at $130/hr.
  • Danica was $160/hr for BBFS at my place, and that’s after she had raised her rate.
  • NYC regulars. Most importantly, those days I was traveling back to NYC every 2 weeks and getting the chance to meet up with my ultra-GFE friends for full-blown overnight bookings with BBFS included at basically the same rate.
I love re-living these adventures! Today, if the opportunity presented itself, I would definitely repeat with Celine. But I can't seem to find a current ad for her anywhere. Maybe she made her money and got out of the game.
submitted by Langston1113 to havingfunhobbying [link] [comments]


2020.09.23 12:34 Venus230 Hidden zone sex

With 'political violence' from 'the left' highly likely to leave bloodshed in America over the coming six weeks leading up to the election and the probability that things will then be kicked up a few notches if President Trump wins, as Susan Duclos had warned in this September 21st story on ANP, Democrats are now biting off a bit more than they can chew with media personalities, Democrat politicians and Hollywood names calling for violence against President Trump supporters.
As J.D. Heyes had warned in this new story over at Natural News, leftists exploded following Ginsburg’s death, threatening to “burn down” the country and leave bodies in the streets if President Trump and the GOP tried to replace her prior to the election.
And with parts of America already on fire long before RBG's death, the fact that Attorney General William Barr's DOJ actually had to declare 3 US cities 'anarchist zones', meaning they could lose millions/billions of dollars in federal funding, confirms what we've long been reporting but the mainstream media has largely been avoiding: Democrats have allowed their cities to turn into boiling cauldrons of hatred and anger to push home a political point and stir up their 'mob' for revolution.
And while the Natural News story points out that 'big tech' is pushing this 'revolution' along, none of us should be at all surprised by what Democrats are doing to America, especially with many globalists/democrats long holding, if not openly talking about, their 'depopulation agenda'. From Natural News before we continue.:
Proving once again why the Democratic Party, home to the American Left, should never, ever be given the reins of power again because their Stalinists and Leninists, “blue checks” on Twitter threatened to burn up the country and leave bodies in the streets “literally” if President Trump and the Republican Senate name a successor to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg following her Friday death from pancreatic cancer.
“If they even TRY to replace RBG we burn the entire f\*king thing down,” Reza Aslan, an Iranian-American and former CNN contributor who claims to be a ‘religious scholar’ tweeted.*
He would later tweet in response to a statement from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who vowed to give any nominee made by Trump a vote, “Over our dead bodies. Literally.”
As Heyes continued to warn in his story, while many dismiss these leftist threats of 'burning down the country' and 'shutting the country down' as 'leftists babbling in anger and despair' following the death of their 'infanticide hero', if we were to look at all of what's happened over the past 4 years as 'a play', this 'latest buildup' would be seen as the 'acts and scenes of conflict and complication' prior to what would become a shocking and climactic conclusion.
And if we look at everything now happening through the eyes of history, we'll see that once again, the far left politicians (and media) are using their 'useful idiots' to try to accomplish political goals, and if they have to burn down America to do so, 'so be it' in their eyes. Once again, from Natural News.
Now, granted, for the most part, it would be easy to wave off the threats made by these lunatic threats as hyperbole — were it not for the fact that our country has just endured months of rioting, looting and statue-toppling violence, ostensibly in the name of a career criminal in Minneapolis who may have died a wrongful death but who certainly does not deserve sainthood.
And we might be able to dismiss them if we weren’t already aware of a sinister plot by the Stalinist Democrat Left to try and steal the election in November with waves of fake mail-in ballots and endless lawsuits — many of which would ultimately wind up before the Supreme Court, making that the No. 1 reason why the president and the Senate GOP have to put a successor on the high court.
So the threats have to be taken seriously, even if the whiny, butt-hurt leftist Twitter warriors are making them from the safety of their homes and basements aren’t actually going to be the ‘heroes’ lining the streets readying for battle.
Because as we’ve seen all summer long, there are hidden forces behind the current violent protests — organizing them, funding them and, reportedly, transporting them.
With a humiliating election crushing possibly only weeks away, a thrashing that we hope will send this particular group of anti-freedom, anti-America Democrats packing for good. as Susan Duclos had warned in this September 19th ANP story, such a defeat would completely unleash the mayhem from Democrats we've already been witnessing building up over the past 4 years, and particularly this summer. Yet as we'll explore in the final section of this story below, if Democrats were only paying attention to just WHO they're 'rioting for', they'd see the bigger picture most are missing.
All the way back on July 7th of 2009, the NY Times published this story titled "The Place Of Women On The Court" within which they interviewed Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and to say in 2020 that some of her answers would be 'shocking' to those paying close attention to her words would be an understatement.
While we linked above to that Times story to prove that it is indeed on their website, it's also been saved here over at Archive.com for history and as this story over at The Stream points out, within that 2009 interview, RBG does nothing less than endorse eugenics for 'certain populations' in America.
We'll go ahead and publish this excerpt from the NY Times story for you to read and let sink in before we continue.:
NY Times: Are you talking about the distances women have to travel because in parts of the country, abortion is essentially unavailable, because there are so few doctors and clinics that do the procedure? And also, the lack of Medicaid for abortions for poor women?
JUSTICE GINSBURG: Yes, the ruling about that surprised me. [Harris v. McRae — in 1980 the court upheld the Hyde Amendment, which forbids the use of Medicaid for abortions.] Frankly I had thought that at the time Roe was decided, there was concern about population growth and particularly growth in populations that we don’t want to have too many of. So that Roe was going to be then set up for Medicaid funding for abortion. Which some people felt would risk coercing women into having abortions when they didn’t really want them. But when the court decided McRae, the case came out the other way. And then I realized that my perception of it had been altogether wrong."
And while several years later, Ginsburg attempted to 'clear up' her stance and the alleged confusion surrounding her views on abortion and 'population control', while many claim her statement proved that she and her peers upon the US Supreme Court wanted legalized abortion to reduce the number of poor and minority people, as The Stream story pointed out, it was actually much worse than that:
The critics’ reading — Ginsburg admits it! Liberals want to get rid of poor people! — was unfair. It wasn’t the most honest of readings. And there’s a cost to dishonesty. You miss the thing you must see.
You don’t see how clever and how radical Ginsburg’s promotion of abortion rights really was. Ginsburg wanted to drive legal abortion into the Constitution. She wanted to make it a right equal to the First Amendment rights, even though the text never mentions it.
Indeed, she even wanted to make it a superior right, in that the government should fund it, because the government has to make sure everyone can enjoy it. The government can’t fund newspapers just because the Constitution guarantees freedom of the press. But it should fund abortions because without them women can’t be completely equal to men.
She explained this to the Senate in her confirmation testimony, back in 1993. Any law against abortion “controls women and denies them full autonomy and full equality with men.” Pregnancy puts women at a disadvantage compared with men. “It is essential to woman’s equality with man that she be the decisionmaker, that her choice be controlling. If you impose restraints that impede her choice, you are disadvantaging her because of her sex.”
A Simple Argument
Ginsburg didn’t like basing abortion in the woman’s right to privacy, as the Roe court did. That leaves open the possibility of balancing her right to privacy with her unborn child’s right to live. She wasn’t proposing abortion as a tragic necessity, a way out for women who just can’t have a child. She didn’t talk about abortion being “safe, legal, and rare,” as the Clintons once did. Those arguments also allow for restrictions.
None of that halfway stuff. She offered a simple argument: The Constitution demands women have complete equality with men; the inability to free themselves of a fetus keeps them from that equality; therefore, the Constitution demands that abortion be completely legal.
She implied, at least, a second argument: The Constitution demands women have complete equality with each other; any inability — being poor, being too far from an abortionist, and so on — keeps them from that equality; therefore, the Constitution demands that the government ensure every women’s ability to procure an abortion, paying for the abortion if necessary.
Simple arguments. Elegant arguments. Clean, neat, without the practical messiness of the halfway arguments. Based on an ideal of equality that nearly everyone agrees with. Recognizing a reality everyone knows. Arguably respectful of the Constitution itself in a way Roe wasn’t. And justifying the killing of tens of millions of human beings.
Justice Ginsburg’s legal project will outlive her. If it succeeds, American law will become completely pro-choice. The unborn child will have no right to live till birth.
submitted by Venus230 to conspiracy [link] [comments]


2020.09.21 22:45 fractalfay Apples being raked does nothing for me: Recap of Happily Ever After? S05E15

After 24 hours as a pudding cannon and pill dispenser, Eric is in awe of himself and his untapped nurturing abilities. Larissa is a total vegetable, and Eric says it’s like having a kid, if parenthood has a 24 hour expiration date, and your child is made of plastic. He’s flirting with making airplane noises as he coaxes Larissa to “open” and consume another 25 calories of goo.
Eric is behind in the quotable quotes department, and realizes he’s running out of episodes to make that happen. So he tosses this salad: “Time without sex gives me more time to get prepared. For what? Well, it doesn’t involve plastic sheeting. It’s been 24 hours. She’s not recovering as quickly as I thought. But I’m not gonna stop when I’m in the middle of the danger zone. I’m gonna take it right into the danger zone.” Thank you Goose, that was outstanding.
He’s crying because Larissa truly is a mess, and he takes her back to the doctor’s office. Dr. Tit-Punch is exactly that, and he comes in like a jolly ginger cowboy checking in on that steer he just branded. He asks about pain, because the more she hurts the more his powers grow, and Larissa confirms it’s happening. Then he reminds Larissa that they hurt a lot because she went for a large size, and they’re under the muscle; he, of course, recommended a small size, but did she listen? Noooooo. Go home, Dr. Feelbad. Larissa can’t move her face at all while she pretends to laugh at her own expense. The doc then adds that he shrunk her areoles from their former silver dollar size to the size of a quarter, and I demand a better descriptor, since this Sacajawea dollar is very nearly a quarter, THANKS.
Fast forward a few weeks, and Larissa and Eric meet up with some of Larissa’s friends for a face and tit and weave reveal, as one does. Eric thinks all of this plastic surgery and bottomless pain killer prescriptions is strengthening their bond, so long as he doesn’t have to be her “sea-na” again (certified nurse’s assistant) again. This duo happily reports Eric’s recovery woes, that they’re still not having enough sex, and that they’ve moved a second bed into Eric’s bedroom, so they sleep like the camp scene in Parent Trap. Larissa’s friends think this is weird, but so is perpetually disappearing to play volleyball, and Paul’s entire existence, so yeah, on this show and in reality, this two beds thing ain’t shit. Larissa’s nose looks okay, even if one nostril seems bigger than the other, and her tits are standing at attention, threatening to escape the strips of fabric she used to bandaid her nipples. If she’s getting titties, she’s doing em justice goddammit, and is raising a flag with those cannons. I think she’s ready to be American.
Angela is beside herself with the news that her mother is in the ICU, and she’s quickly packing up before heading to the airport to be at her mother’s bedside. She’s afraid her mom will never meet him, and that she’ll arrive too late to say goodbye.
“Maybe it’s my fault,” Angela says, blaming herself for something she can’t control, like people with too much responsibility everywhere. Her grief and sense of panic is a reminder of Angela’s special place on this show, and the real person lurking underneath her brash and ridiculous façade. Human Angela is a thousand times more interesting than white trash caricature Angela. More of this, please.
Michael is in tears over her upcoming departure, but knows he has to be strong for her, because she needs to help her mom. He sees her off at the airport, and they call each other husband and wife. Angela wants Michael in the US of A, where he can support her in person, and it seems like she’s speaking for a lot of couples here.
After her plane lands, Angela fumbles with her luggage and heads directly to the hospital, knowing that she’ll have to crack some jokes as a greeting, because that’s how her mother knows her. As she heads through the hospital doors, she hopes to at least get to hold her mother’s hand and tell her she loves her before she fades.
90DF catches up with her two weeks later, and we learn that Grandma hung on for 10 more days, and Angela got to say goodbye. Angela and Skyla sit down to talk about it, and Skyla starts bobbing her foot the way Angela does when she’s trying not to cry, and reports that when she was at Grandma’s bedside, Grandma soothed her by saying, “Well, I’ve got to go to heaven sometime.” This is a perfect epitaph.
Angela seems softer, and she says Michael has been great over the phone, but she just wants her husband at her side. Then the grandkids ask if they can watch youtube, and Angela says fine, so long as they don’t land on that dude with Doritos dust still in his beard talking about green beams from California. She calls Michael, and starts smoking so he’ll recognize her. During this call Michael says that it could be up to 18 months before he’ll arrive in the USA on a spousal visa, and Angela wonders if all of this is too hard. Michael knows his role by now, and he says it’s not too hard, and they can do it — they just need to be more stubborn than the immigration office.
I’ve said it before, and it seems worth repeating: Angela’s tantrums are all an act, because these two are way too relaxed around each other for a pair in a consistently abusive relationship, and Michael is never surprised by her outbursts; they seem to know how they’ve been branded by producers, and work to color within the lines. In situations where people normally go to pieces, they are both instantly adults, navigating complex decisions and supporting each other practically and emotionally. They’ll be back.
Kalani and Asuelu are loading the family up to wave off the pirate ship that brought Asuelu’s family to shore. Kalani is calling Kennedy Freddy, and now I’m confused. They hope to get through a few sentences without a money grab, and things look promising when Rosa signs that it was good to see all of them, and Oliver and Kennedy make more effort to sign to her than anyone else thus far. Why didn’t we get more Rosa? Her signing with the kids would have been totally charming. Why does 90DF always drop us in the most predictable dark waters, and edit anything relatable out?
Just as they’re starting to relax, Mom asks for money again, and announces that she’s joking seconds before Kalani detonates. Asuelu says it’s too soon for that joke, and as they leave Mom reminds both of them to take care of the kids repeatedly, because Asuelu sometimes forgets.
“Bye my room, thank you for everything,” Mom shouts as they leave.
“Stop talking to me,” the room retorts.
Theory: I think Asuelu gave her more money when he went to visit her alone, and that’s the real reason she shut up about it. Just putting that out there.
Back in Utah, Kalani and Asuelu go to dinner, and cheers three times, and the bartenders need to stop being dicks and bring this woman an adult’s drink. Maybe I’ve been in Portland too long, but if I surrender $7.00 and get a Diixie cup of liquor and not a mason jar spilling over the sides, there had better be bottomless refills.
Anyway, since these two have nothing to talk about and Kalani is increasingly unsuccessful in veiling her contempt, Kalani asks the waiter for paper and pens so they can play Tic-Tac-Toe and a new game Kalani invented called Dreaming Myself Elsewhere. She suggests they do their homework assignment from the therapist, who they apparently went to see exactly once, because they’re doing that who-does-what list mentioned a few episodes ago. Afterwards Asuelu collects the papers and declares he’s going to grade himself. Dude, you need to swap papers with your neighbor. Do you even junior high, bro?
Anyway, Asuelu awards himself Perfect Attendance, and Kalani says hers looks like Honor Roll, but he can copy off her paper. Asuelu isolates his apple-raking meditation as one of his weekly responsibilities, lest the lawn be reduced to sauce. If he sugars the whole thing, he’ll be inching towards compote. I mean, think of the ants.
“Apples being raked does nothing for me,” Lady Kalani declares, as she nibbles just a corner of a truffle, and demands just a touch more wine.
“You are the pineapple of my life,” Asuelu JarJars, chawing on the ankle of a surfboard.
For the record, unfair allotment of domestic duties is one of the leading causes of divorce, and the #2 cause of a screaming match I may or may not have participated in seven years ago that included the phrase, “Go die.” #1 would be money, which also isn’t looking so good for Team Kasuelu, even if citizenship grants them double the 90DF dimes.
Later on, COVID-19 is becoming a Korean horror movie subplot, and Kalani is going to pass on the role of Woman Who Dies First. Asuelu’s been playing volleyball, which has to be code for drugs or porn or a massage with a happy ending, because I can’t. We know from his response to measles that he doesn’t think disease actually exists, so these unmasked, socially-intimate sweat exchanges could bring The Rona into their home. Kalani’s retort is to buy him a one-way ticket to Washington, aka the first state to suffer a major outbreak. This is the most Shakespearean thing to ever happen to this show. This is the most Game of Thrones thing to happen on this show.
“I know,” Kalani says, running her finger along the lip of a wine glass until it sings. “Quarantine is oddly freeing, isn’t it? Perhaps you’d enjoy another scene of me putting on makeup? I can also comb my mermaid hair from this clamshell.”
Kalani’s savage death sentence comes riding in on the back of the fucks she has left to give about his hidden “volleyball” agenda. AND THIS IS THE MOST SHAKESPEARE MOMENT OF ALL: She sentences him to several months with his mom, a senior citizen he’ll warmly embrace, germ flowing, right off an airplane.
“She sent him right into the danger zone,” Eric is in awe.
I see you, Kalani. I know you’re Cobra Kai. Strike fast, strike hard, no mercy. Sweep the leg. (Insert appropriate hand signal acknowledging mutual membership.)
Mother Kalani aka Lisa sits down to talk to Kalani, showing off her own waterfall of dark curls, used to thwart advancing man-babies and summon larger drinks. They sit underneath a sign that reads, “we decided on forever” without a hint of irony, and this is the greatest thing ever, and a warning not to put words on your wall unless you’re okay with their curse. After they talk for awhile Lisa starts crying, because her daughter is unhappy and Asuelu let her down.
“Can we just focus on how cute the children are and how sexy my husband is instead of Asuelu?” Lisa makes a solid argument. “Kalani was supposed to get a Brandon, and somehow she got a Steve. A Steve. You know who wants a Steve? Nobody.”
Speaking of needing help, Syngin is running out of reasons to return stateside with Tania, but thinks he can still feign confusion for a few more scenes. “How’s this face? That’s my confused face. Wait, I have another one. This is startled. I know, right? Range,” Syngin is prepared.
He sits down with his family, and they want to know if he has any actual desire to return to CT. His moms tells him he’s “wasting your journey,” unless he wants to travel with excess baggage. After several minutes of resigned conversation, he loses hope that one among them will demand a kidney or ask him to stick around the carry the groceries, so he remains stuck toting Tania across the tarmac.
“I could tote her,” Angela is ready. “I just need ya egg.”
It’s their last day in South Africa, and Syngin is getting ice cream with the person he’s about to be trapped on a plane with. Tania thinks that Syngin lied about his plans for the future, and time-out, Tania lied, too. She said they could live anywhere in the US, and the minute his plane landed she was waxing poetic about her own childhood and how she wants to raise her children in CT, thus rendering them both prisoners of a snowy state for upwards of 18 years. Tania says their relationship is all that maters, because she’s never gonna get a baby if something else does. For his part, Syngin decides he wants to be a coder, a fireman, a detective police officer but not a regular one, a boy band guitarist, and a meadow, because he doesn’t like to limit himself.
Colt has to break the news to his mom that he’s technically an adult, but not before he demonstrates that he doesn’t know how to cut a cat’s nails. His dieting strategy is surrounding himself with food he doesn’t want to eat, so he celebrates the delivery of vegan mac and cheese. Colt tries to get Debbie to arrange her mouth around this foreign sounding word, “vegan” and she recognizes it as the flirting he clearly intended it to be.
Debbie presses for the deets on why he seems down, and he says that after a lifetime of blaming the women in his life for his failed relationships, he’s ready to blame Debbie, too. Never mind that the common denominator in all of these relationships is the guy who doesn’t cook his own food or make his own bed, but lets not burden ourselves with details. Debbie still insists that Jess was using Colt for a green card, and that she has to meddle because the minute she steps away, he’s ordering dairy-rich foods without the dairy. Still, Colt feels like he doesn’t have the kind of privacy normally afforded a reality star. Colt mimes more son feelings, and asks his mom to hold his hand like a Lifetime movie. Debbie is not having it, because she’s seen that movie, and knows this is the scene where the mother’s role in the plot expires.
“I’d like to see him make his own bed, wash his own clothes, give himself a sponge bath,” Debbie scoffs. “No one lights a pumpkin spice Yankee candle the way I do. No one alphabetized the Cornish cookware like me. He might think he can handle a Pyrex dish, but think again.”
“I don’t know what any of those things are, but I want to be treated like a man,” Colt asserts. “Not because I act like one, but because I say it. ”
Speaking of not-a-man, Charlie is trying to form talking words with his chicken nugget brain, but he’s already double-dipped in Ranch. Andrei drags him outside, and since we’ve endured endless teasing of coming fisticuffs, nothing happens. Charlie drunkenly issues macho challenges, and Andrei says they’re not going to figure it out tonight. He tells Charlie to remember his sister, and her happiness, and they can go inside and worry about it later.
“Yes, the wedding was $30K, okay,” Andrei reports. “That was Charlie’s college fund, which will clearly not be needed.”
Somebody call 9-1-1, because Libby and Andrei’s Moldovan wedding is on fire! No one has puzzled out how to muzzle and duct tape the drunk guy yet, which means the groomsmen and bridesmaids are fired. Charlie sways around and says that Andrei is “soft” because he didn’t punch his wife’s brother at their wedding do-over, which is the sort of thing you think when a moment of not being the center of attention is enough to cause you to crumble. Chuck still wades around in Charlie’s bullshit, unwilling or unable to tell him to go the fuck home, insisting that he “did it for my daughter, not for Andrei.” Marcel tries to earn his place back on the groom team by telling Charlie to STFU, and DUI Jen works to make it worse by emphasizing that Andrei is still a bad guy, they should just should pause the theatrics for Libby. Nothing is going to stop this drunken tantrum, and he tells Chuck, “They’re already married, and you’re still paying for their shit. You have seven kids. I’m not taking a pay cut for this dude.”
“You can’t talk to Jesus when you’re drunk,” Thank you, Akinyi.
Libby doesn’t want to be left out of rerouting this public display of douchebag into Andrei’s fault. “Why is he so mad?” She demands. “What did you say to him?” Libby, drunk people aren’t logical. There isn’t a cause and effect happening.
Andrei takes Chuck aside, and asks him to handle his son, for America. This approach makes Chuck defensive, so Andrei reels it back, and apologizes for his part in their tense relationship. He says that he genuinely wants things to be better, especially now that children are involved, and says, “For the sake of my daughter, and your daughter, make peace.” Whoa, what’s adulthood doing here? Chuck seems moved by the sudden appearance of sincerity, especially when Andrei doubles down on acknowledging his contribution to this mess, and they agree to meet each other half way…until Chuck steps to the left for his interview, which allows another opportunity to say he doesn’t know about Andrei. Did he get a $5 bonus every time he trotted out this line?
Libby is still worried that Andrei and her family will never get along, and finds a way to hector Andrei about the importance of getting along with her fam all over again, and I can’t help but wish she’d take that tone with the other toxic people in her life.
“I made peace with you father,” Andrei says in his own defense. “Me and your dad buried the hatchet. Your sister and brother, they are assholes. Yes, I am the one who has said it. Look on Reddit, there is much agreement with me.”
Libby is drained, and just wants to enjoy the rest of her wedding, and Andrei is sweet to her, and these two are tolerable for a hot minute. Exactly one hot minute.
“There’s a broke bum over there named Charlie,” says a broke bum over there named Andrei. “What? You think peacefulness would last?”
Next week, it’s tell-all time! Angela wears her face mask so the internets don’t give her the ‘rona, Tania and Syngin show off that pre or post divorce glow, Kalani is pleased to report Asuelu isn’t there, DUI Jen and Charlie chuck grenades in glass houses, Colt is feeling himself, Angela threatens to beat Tammy’s ass because she can out Jerry Springer anyone, and Shaun eagerly demonstrates that she enjoys the smell of social distancing, and is also Cobra Kai. Make em bleed, Shaun. Make em bleed.
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2020.09.19 16:50 hpennspenn Redwood Alchemy and The Moonlit Maiden Reviews

Let's dive right in! I found both of these lovely stores on etsy, but was guided there by none other that you beautiful souls. I am very new to reviews, but I have to give both of these shops justice by at least trying!
So first up is Redwood Alchemy! I purchased the scent Arete immediately after seeing a post announcing her launch! Described as " As ephemeral as the fae winds. Notes: Lily of the Valley, Vanilla, Amber, Cashmere"
https://www.etsy.com/shop/RedwoodAlchemy?ref=notif_nfyfs&order=date_desc
Mind you these scents, from both creators, have traveled through wildfires, over vast elevation changes, jostling, and mail shock, so after resting the scents are likely to develop into something even more magnificent.
I'm stalling.... Okay Arete: Wet there is a burst of fresh crisp woods, there is simply no other way to describe it. I am not a pro at identifying individual notes, but this is exactly what I envision a 80 foot redwood tree smelling like down to its roots. Dry down leads to a robust, crisp, ethereal feel of being enveloped by nature, exploring the woods, headed to grandmothers house cloaked in only my red hood for defense. But this young lady is not defenseless, beneath her red hood is a backbone, ready to fight. This scent remains woody, but green. Not mossy, but fresh. This is the worst comparison, but think of fresh saw-dust! This is not rotting, or forgotten wood on the side of your home. It is loved and nurtured and wrapped with layers of warmth. My husband, who rarely likes any of my scent choices, smelt this and said, "Oh that's nice!" Beautifully unisex and versatile. I cannot wait to see how a little rest rounds out this lovely purchase!
P.S. The shop owner of Redwood Alchemy is legit someone who I would love to sit down and ponder the world with! Down to earth, fresh and cutting with a great wit, and extremely quick with responses. Well done!
Now the Moonlit Maiden! Firstly, this shop owner is also amazingly responsive, beyond accommodating, and a pure joy to work with! I didn't harass her quite as much lol But I have a feeling she and I could easily banter back and forth delving into all manners of discussion. My first order went missing, USPS, *gasp* HOWEVER, Jasmine herself was who brought this to my attention! She was uncomfortable with how long this order was taking to arrive, which didn't seem that long to me, maybe 10 days, and asked if she could send me a replacement! I was truly blown away. I opted to wait another week to see if my package arrived, sadly USPS ate it :( Have no fear! Jasmine sent replacements of my entire order! And this time we tasted sweet success!
https://www.etsy.com/shop/TheMoonlitMaiden?ref=simple-shop-header-name&listing_id=676055904
Hades Fragrance: Sandalwood, Black Licorice, Night Air
A darkly sweet scent meant for the King of the Underworld. While he was widely feared, he was not the god of death that would bring people's lives to an end. That was the true god of death, Thanatos. Hades ruled over the souls of the dead and decided the fates of their eternal souls. To live in paradise, or to live in torture. In a few versions Hades had gotten creative with his punishments to mortal souls at the request of other gods, but he was never an evil soul who plotted downfalls or took advantage of women. Not even in the original story between him and Persephone.
I made this scent after a tired, dark man who was good at his job and knew it.
Wet Hades initially has a slightly masculine scent produced by the licorice, although the idea of assigning sex based on scent seems ridiculous in my opinion. But this scent is snuggly and spicy and Hades is damn alluring! I can't accurately comment as to throw or wear length, as I've been testing all morning with rinse, wash repeat. All in all this is a great licorice scent if the candied licorice is simply too much for you. This isn't candy sweet. This is sexy licorice with a spike of nature. I really really like this!
Leo Fragrance: Frankincense, Myrrh, Amber, Patchouli, Peach
ONLY AVAILABLE UNTIL AUGUST 22ND!!!!
Leos are born from July 23rd to August 22nd. Leos are likely to express themselves in dramatic, creative, and assertive ways. Leos have great energy and courage, and are very honest. They rarely lack in self-confidence and enjoy being the center of attention, as so they often are. They are natural leaders, despite being self-indulgent at times. They are determined with an instinct for integrity. Leos are ruled by the sun and show it as they bask in the spotlight.
I made this fragrance to be musky, to feel warm. There is only a hint of sweetness with the sun-kissed peach as this was made for the Leos that enjoy the smell of warmth. The musk and sweet combine for a scent that is to resemble the heat, the sun, and standing for an ovation.
Oh Leo you sexy beast you! This is sweet and reminiscent of a trip to bath and body works, minus the headache. Not a scent I would typically wear, but I couldn't resist with my love for frank, myrrh, and patch. The combination here keeps the peach from being overpowering, but I would still say it's the centerpiece. This dries down and is sooo much better! Dry this is a comforting festive seasonal scent that I could see wearing during summer and early fall.
Dragon Fragrance: Campfire, Cinnamon, Harvest Spice
The oldest dragons can be dated back to chinese mythology although winged beasts/serpants can be found in many different regions and time periods. While in the middle ages, Europeans believed in winged beasts that could breathe fire, in chinese mythology Dragons were wise, more serpent-bodied, beasts that were praised as well as feared.
I made this scent to symbolize a dragon's breath or aura for their fire. Dragon is one of our strongest because of the blending of Harvest Spice, spicy Cinnamon, and intense Campfire.
Dragon comes out with that cinnamon ready to smolder any threats to his hidden treasure! But I'm willing to fight him for it! This harvest spice note she utilizes is revolutionary. I really am loving it! The Dragon may be kin to the headless horseman, but they do not resemble each other in the least. Where Headless Horseman has more of a softening sweet note, Dragon is sugar and spice, minus the sugar. This is not potpourri, this is balanced and lovely! If you like some spice in your life, get a pet dragon!
Headless Horseman Fragrance: Harvest Spice, Night Air, Pumpkin Pie
The legend of the Headless Horseman can be tracked back to many cultures and mythologies over the years. One of the most famous stories of a Headless Horseman, beside the Tale of Sleepy Hallow, was named Sir Gawain and The Green Knight. In Camelot, a mysterious knight came with a challenge for Arthur and his knights. If it was possible for one of them to win by chopping his head off, he would come back in a year and be allowed to do the same to the victor. In King Arthur's place, Sir Gawain fought the knight and won by chopping his head off. To his utter surprise, the Green Knight picked up his head, reminded King Arthur of the promise, and rode off with his head on the front of his saddle.
I made this scent with Halloween also in mind since that's when this legend is currently most prominent. The Harvest Spice and pumpkin pie make for a strong impression while the night air represents the mist and time that the Headless Horseman always seems to appear.
So this is my favorite thus far! I hate to compare to other brands, but if you are familiar with hexennacht's chai-mallow, this reminds me of it. Seeing as it's my personal favorite, I am happily loving this! Where they differ is there is a slightly more edgy spice to Headless Horseman. I see this being a great hit!!!
Mermaid Fragrance: Ocean Breeze, Lotus Blossom, Awapuhi-Seaberry
Assuming Mermaids, Selkies, and Sirens are different creatures, Mermaids seem to be the most benevolent of the three. They are known for bestowing luck and good fortune, and falling in love with humans. The first stories of mermaids seemed to appear in Assyria when their goddess, Atargatis, turned herself into a mermaid out of shame from accidentally killing her lover.
I made this scent in assumption that the multiple mythological sea creatures were sperate beings. Since Mermaids seem to be the most kind, I blended in Awapuhi-Seaberry for it's sweetness, along with Lotus Blossom for its comforting scent, and Ocean Breeze to signify a mermaid's home.
This is venturing out of my comfort zone, as I'm not typically an aquatic gal. But after this, I just might be. Wet this reminds me of professional perfumery. It's very airy, while sweet, and balanced. I've encountered a scent like this before, but I cannot place it! This dries down to something gorgeous. Definitely more throw to this scent, and I don't think you or anyone around you will be disappointed by it. This is truly lovely, and very very tempting!
Witch Fragrance: Coffee, Cafe Mocha, Caramel, Vanilla
A witch is a woman who practices many or one form of witchcraft or magic. Witches were once a revered people who helped and healed others but have since been condemned and purged by those who have feared them. Through determination, or maybe even the same magic they use, witchcraft is still practiced by many witches even today.
I made this scent based off of the witches I've come to know in my own life. Hard working women who practice the craft while rushing to work with only some coffee to get them through the morning.
A CARAMEL THAT I DO NOT DESPISE!!! Oh this is a really good coffee scent. There is a nuttiness, dry fresh espresso, and billowing cloud catching this scent ensnaring it warmth. This dries down effortlessly into a coffee blend I would actually wear! Good throw on this one!
Pixie Fragrance: Brown Sugar, Vanilla, Honey, Oatmeal, Milk
Pixies are belived to be of Celtic origin and although similar, have had a mostly tense and war-like relationship with Faeries in early folklore. Pixies are mischievous, childlike, and adventurous. They love sweet things and will gather in huge groups to dance, or even wrestle, with each other.
I made this scent off of a Pixie's friendly and sweet-loving nature. Oatmeal, honey, and milk make for a gritty and sweet mix with the Vanilla and brown sugar to make it even sweeter. While the Oatmeal calms it down, this is a definitely a sickly sweet scent that any pixie might be attracted to.
Pixie comes out with that brown sugar on the tip of her tongue, ready to give you a piece of her mind! But then she quickly sees a star that she must capture, and she simply soars. Oh this is nice, gourmand lovers, take note. There is a nuttiness here, reminiscent of Witch. I did not expect such transformation throughout each scent, but I am happy to report, initial sniff is not what you get here folks. Nope, you must wait for the dry down. Pixie is lovely, and everything I look for in a comfy warm snuggly sit on my porch wrapped in a blanket type of wear. The vanilla finally comes out, or maybe it's the honey. Whoever it is, you just make this scent a full blown orgasmic hit! I like this one far too much!
Aphrodite Fragrance: Rose, Coconut, Vanilla
Goddess of Love and Beauty, but not commitment, Aphrodite had many affairs even though she was married to Haphaestus, the god of fire and smithing. In some versions, she was known as Zeus' daughter, but she was actually born from the sea froth of Kronos' jingle bells when they were cut off and fell into the sea. She is famously vain and in love with love, but has shown a kinder side now and again. Just don't make her jealous...
I made this scent to capture Aphrodite's amourous scent but also the place of her birth. Just a few drops of Coconut mixed with a middle not of Rose and soft vanilla to tie it all together.
Aphrodite is a temptress, and I'm not going to lie, rose, you scared me. We have a strained relationship, swinging from love to hate all to often. There is no in-between, it is either or. But this is rose done right, in my opinion. This reminds me of the face cream I spoil myself with from sherrisoapopera off etsy. This is supremely balanced, and never ventures into old lady territory for me, but delivers utter sophistication. The coconut comes out to dance during the dry down, bringing this scent around to a beautifully packaged luxurious wear. I am pleasantly shocked by this choice! This is garden party ready, do we do those anymore? We should... I like big hats
submitted by hpennspenn to Indiemakeupandmore [link] [comments]


2020.09.09 21:48 CircleRelatedAnxiety Hidden zone sex

First Previous Next
“Planetary incident log #01. Lead investigator. Exterminator sergeant Patterson, personal incident log #36… damn, that many huh. I am currently sitting on a fallen tree, approximately 25m from the incident of intersection with interface emergence. Environmental scans put us in the Mega-Gunther range on the high F-band, not the worst I’ve seen but the Gunther rating isn’t the problem. The area is sitting at 600 Libeters; that’s the highest I have seen in a single emergence area, no way the interface is causing these levels.
The emergence consists of two components: an emergent protrusion, and a formative base. The protrusion is approximately 3.5m in height and 1m in diameter, composed primarily of cartilaginous and fatty tissues, small bone protrusions dot the exterior that seem to not extend into the main structure. The base covers an area with a radius of 5m and is almost entirely fatty tissue with long strips of muscle analogous to slow-twitch muscle in humans, this tissue would form the first defensive armatures if the emergence were allowed to grow. The interface itself has formed at a height of 2m and is fully stabilized pulsing at a rate of ¼ hertz with a peak of 60 Mega-Gunther.
As lead investigator, my course of action will be standard small area purge procedure. I am authorizing 20 drums of 6-gauge cannister munitions and up to 30% of the section Pyrocomp-14x. Interface destabilization and sealing will be conducted concurrently to the physical destruction. I am including imagining of the emergence and interface zone- along with maps and sketches of the area- in this log.
On to personal notes, I guess… I never get tired of looking at these things. That’s a bad way to phrase it. The wrongness… the disgust, they never went away for me. Most exterminators, no matter their rank, get over the weirdness of the emergences. All they see is the flesh, the twist that needs to be burnt out, it becomes just a job somewhere down the line for them. For me… it’s a calling, a burning in my blood, a biological need… like food, water, sex. I need to put these things to the fire, I need fire. Looking at an emergence just brings me back to hunting in the sewers of the Jovian habs, back to Olympus station. Maybe that’s why I still get freaked out by these things… why I can’t just burn it out without passion. I know what these things do, what they turn into when you let them sit.
Thaumaturges have studied the interfaces and the emergence phenomena for centuries, hundreds of hypotheses narrowed down to a few theories that don’t quite solve. None of them get it right… the emergence isn’t some breakdown of the rules of physics, it isn’t a place where dimensions interact. Those who become purge troopers, we all know deep down what they are… a wound, bloody and mangled, in the walls of reality. When we burn it, its not a purge; it’s a cauterization. We excise a cancer, and then we purify it, the land, the flesh, the very fabric of reality. I’m not just rambling by the way, I know that’s kind of the point, but I have a point of my own.
Flux is weird stuff, if you look at magic the way the thaumaturges look at it; cold and scientific. If instead you look at magic- and this is where the thaumaturges will start pulling hairs- as an organism or an ecosystem. Flux is just that, flux; magic is constantly shifting in a state of unbalance trying to correct itself. Magic is intrinsically linked to life- with the exception of humans- it is constantly trying to expand, to grow, just like any other kind of life. The more life there is, more magic follows; the more magic there is, the more life that follows. As the total amount of both increases, the stronger the mages produced. Anyway, like all organisms and ecosystems, magic produces waste. That waste is flux, flux is everywhere in small levels; its when you get high enough levels is when things get dangerous.
There are short- and long-term effects to flux exposure; in the short-term high flux states can cause warping of flesh and metal, hallucinations, and insanity in under an hour, faster if you have implants and cybernetics. Long-term effects need either severe or long exposure- like radiation- effects include particularly invasive and varied cancers, genetic drift, RNA corruption, mutation, and warping of dominant/ recessive traits, spontaneous chromosome development or erasure, gradual warping of flesh and bone, DNA reset, and reanimation in areas experiencing high flux states.
In another connected segue. Training does this weird thing where it makes you seem smarter than you are, snipers know how to position themselves to stay hidden, artillery men know how to calculate ballistics, so on so forth. When I got the call to come out here, they told me to prepare for a mass burn and that they were getting F-band signals. Now when I hear mass burn, I think numbers around… 100-200 thousand corpses. Never crossed my mind that I would be leading a burn of over a million, defies the mind to visualize. To give you an idea, the largest burn I was a part of until now was less than 500 thousand… I would have been twelve, back when the Lancaster college of thaumaturgy blew up.
The LT. told me to go over the Col.’s report, specifically the section on what the locals call the Low people. That report is dryer than the sandwich in box ration #24, but if you read between the lines, Magnus is asking the right questions, and he is asking a whole lot of them. I always have believed as an investigator, that the most dangerous weapon in anybody’s possession is not a gun, or a knife, not their body or their mind, is a question. When you see a target, you ask yourself if that is a hostile, the right question can give you a person’s motives, the right questions made every piece of technology we have. If the question is your most dangerous weapon, then the Col. Is very dangerous indeed.
Some of the questions that the Colonel asked were, how, who, and why. Reading through the report, I have a single answer. I have the answer to a modification to the why, he asked why the low didn’t bring their full weight down on the city. It had rattled around in my brain, something teasing me with the answer. It wasn’t until we saw the smoke, the piles of bodies that it clicked. That ooze that covers the low is extremely energetic, these things shouldn’t be able to burn, conventional chemistry indicates that these things should just explode. The section thaumaturge agrees with me, the ooze is stabilized with some spell that lets the energy released be converted into flux at a steady rate.
To answer the why, we have to look at it like any extermination. You can’t purge a fungal infestation with a hammer, the spores will just grow new colonies. If the Low came down with their full force on the city, the people would flee to their islands, the growth in population without a supply chain would force them to go somewhere else, or they might spread out. the population on the island would be able to sustain itself at a lower population level, the Low would never be able to get them all.
This is a fumigation. Slowly poison the population, corrupt their genetics over generations, by the end the population would be nearly sterile, unable to conceive or carry a child to birth. It’s a brutal but effective way to exterminate any infestation. So that leads me to some questions of my own, how did the Low learn about flux? how did they learn to weaponize it? when did the locals start to show symptoms of flux exposure? How long do they have left? These questions all come down to me to spearhead, no one else on planet is qualified.
As I record this log, the section is preparing the mobile fume hood and the destabiliser, and the thaumaturge is taking samples to confirm our suspicions. I will be taking steps to ensure that the locals do not suffer from any more flux exposure, we put the fires out when we arrived as preparation for a proper, safe burn. Hopefully, the Revelry will have a complement of purge troopers to assist with my investigation.
Lead investigator, Exterminator sergeant Patterson ending log.”
Hey there HFY! I have to say this one was hella fun to write, all of it dialogue from a single person with a different perspective than any of the other characters. As always, all feedback is welcome and I hope you enjoy.
submitted by CircleRelatedAnxiety to HFY [link] [comments]


2020.09.02 01:34 planetpike75 [Battle] The Dragon Cast Down

[M] At long last, we have the conclusion to the great China-Bahrain-UAE-CIRAP-KSA-USA saga. This post will consist of multiple parts parts: some will be more like a typical modevent detailing the results of China's cyberattacks and other espionage actions against the United Arab Emirates. The other part will consist of the actual battle results as per usual. They'll be tied together throughout the post, and note the dates because this isn't entirely in chronological order for the sake of the narrative. That said, let's begin.
Also, ignore the fact that I posted this already. It didn't have casualties so it doesn't count. This thing is just about the 40,000 character limit and over 20 pages long; I did it in one day, so please don't be too hard on me. [/M]
The Digital Theater

3And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads. 4And his tail drew the third part of the stars from heaven, and cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.
-- Revelation 12:3-4
Dubai International Airport | Dubai, United Arab Emirates | April 16th, 2028 | 14:58 Local Time
It was a normal day for the Dubai International Airport, the largest in the world and often one of the busiest. Despite the toll the oil embargo had taken on the Emirati economy, planes were still constantly in transit, flying in and out of the complex, carrying civilians, migrant workers, businessmen, royals, soldiers, doctors, and more. At one of its multiple international terminals, a young citizen of the Emirates, Muhammad al-Kadaj, stood by a flight board, tapping his feet impatiently. He and his newlywed wife were supposed to meet at the airport to board their flight to Ankara to visit his now father-in-law, but she was now almost twenty-five minutes late with no indication of what was taking her so long.
It's probably just running late, he thought to himself. The trains never run on time, anyway. She'll be here soon.
His thoughts were interrupted by a loud blast of the sound of the display next to him turning to static. The flight schedule had been scrambled as letters and numbers flew across the screen in between bouts of static, and a piercing ringing exploded from a nearby intercom. After a brief moment to cover his ears and adjust himself to the shock, al-Kadaj looked up to see not only the display next to him showing an error message, but almost every screen within his field of view was either shut down, turned to static, or showing an error message of some kind. His immediate thoughts were panicked. What was happening? Was this a terror attack? A government coup?
About ten agonizing seconds later, the displays returned to normal and the screeching ceased. A voice rang out from the PA system. It was clearly not a prerecorded message; the man was fresh out of breath and seemed as confused as the airport's patrons.
"Please stay calm, everyone. We have had a minor security breach that is now under control. Please stay calm. Continue to your destinations and we will return to -- wait, what was that? Right now? Oh, god. Okay. Everyone, we are under attack. Please seek shelter in the nearest available space. This is not a drill. This is not a drill."
Al-Maktoum Station | Dubai, United Arab Emirates | April 16th, 2028 | 14:52 Local Time
Between the roar of the high-speed train and the bustling cacophony of the voices of its passengers, Layla certainly understood what her husband meant when he said that there was no city like Dubai. Her hometown, a small village about three hundred kilometers outside of Ankara, was all she had known for most of her life until she met Muhammad while studying in the Turkish capital. While she had adjusted to life in the city during her university years, she was not quite prepared for Dubai. And while she was overwhelmed, she found that she loved it. She had never felt so alive as she did when she walked its crowded streets, taking in the sounds of a hundred languages, the sights of grand skyscrapers, and the smells of the street vendors. It was different, but it was good. She was quite happy to live out the rest of her days with her husband in the city.
However, family had called her back to Turkey. Her father had fallen ill lately; while it wasn't life threatening, she and her husband found it proper to visit him and her mother to help with some renovations to their house and farmstead that were underway. Despite her newfound love for the city, she was excited to see her family again. It had been years since she last visited the cottage of her youth, and it would be a nice change of pace from the breakneck speed at which the average citizen of Dubai is forced to live his or her life.
She was roused from her half-slumber by the calming voice of the train attendant.
"Now arriving at al-Maktoum Station. Al-Maktoum Station. Please be careful as you exit the train."
The voice spoke, but the train did not slow down. The passengers began to notice this after a few seconds and a soft murmur soon erupted into a steady drone. And in an instant, the lights on the train were shut off. The train drew closer and closer to the station, where another train was parked -- but it did not show any signs of slowing down. The drone rose and rose, reaching its final form as an unearthly chorus of screaming and wailing.
Then, silence.
Ruwais Refinery | Al-Ruwais, United Arab Emirates | April 16th, 2028 | 15:05 Local Time
The refinery wasn't the best place to work -- especially not for a college-educated man like Ismail bin Talaal -- but it certainly paid the bills. At least, until the embargo hit. Ismail was one of many who found himself down on his luck after graduating from university with a mostly-useless degree, pushed out of any available opportunities by those more connected, more educated, or more experienced. After two years of looking for a job to no avail, he eventually followed in his father's footsteps as a worker at the Ruwais oil refinery. A lowly job, but it was better than nothing. The embargo had taken its toll on his paycheck and possibly the future of his employment, from what he could gather from the hushed whispers of his superiors at work. However, he couldn't afford to quit.
He was nearing the end of a long shift of sweeping floors and mopping up residue when he overheard two IT workers yelling at each other from across a hall. Tired of the mundanities of cleaning bathrooms and wiping off water fountains, he stood against the corner of the wall and bent his ear in to listen.
"Hey, uh, boss?"
"What's up?"
"Is the internet down for you, too?"
"What? No. At least, I don't think so. Let me check."
A brief moment of silence. Ismail had almost made up his mind to go back to work when the other voice piped back up.
"Yeah, it's wo-- nope, it's out for me, too. Shit. Have you tried the Ethernet cable? We can't stay offline for too long."
"Got it. Give me one sec. Hang on. What's all this? What happened to the maintenance page?"
"Is everything good?"
"Everything's gone!"
The New Age of Warfare
Contracted by the People's Republic of China, cybersoldiers from the Democratic People's Republic of Korea carried out a series of attacks against various positions and people within the United Arab Emirates on April 16th, 2028, as a preface to a Chinese intervention in the region. A number of targets, such as the Dubai International Airport and multiple desalination plants, were able to fend off the digital offensive, but not every target was so prepared, or so lucky. Specifically, the Dubai High-Speed Railway and the Ruwais Refinery crumbled under the weight of the attack. The attacks on the rail system resulted in a catastrophic failure of the entire railway network, causing four train crashes across the system that killed 76 and injured over 450 passengers. The Ruwais Refinery found its entire digital maintenance system wiped out. Entire records were destroyed, and the refining process was halted in its tracks, creating a sharp disruption to the flow of oil that keeps the Emirati economy afloat.
Not only this, but thousands of deepfakes of Emirati officials, leaders, generals, imams, economists, and businessmen immediately began circulating throughout social media, spreading across the globe. Ranging from fake sex tapes of President al-Maktoum with a variety of popular porn actresses, to the most popular imam in Dubai confessing to be a practicing Jew in private, to a faked tape of the Emirati general staff discussing their plans to unleash nuclear armageddon on Israel via a hidden cache of hydrogen bombs, troll accounts from IP addresses around the world were flooding Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Reddit. While many of these were easily identifiable as fakes, the more conspiracy-inclined people of the world were quick to latch on to a number of the fakes. In the UAE, hundreds of protestors gathered in Dubai to lament the sexual immorality of their President, while the "leak" from the military made its way across the pond to the United States, where large groups of evangelical Christians proclaimed that the end times were nigh, and that the antichrist, President al-Maktoum, would lead his army into Israel any day now as they demanded that President Cotton sever the American relationship with the great Satan, in a bizarre turn of fate.
In Bahrain, similar messages began to flood their networks and social media circles. The tyranny of Bahrain was laid bare for all to see as more and more people became sympathetic to the rebel cause. While they did not necessarily grow from this, a sort of apathy has spread throughout the Bahraini people as they can not bring themselves to condemn the rebels, but also can not bring themselves to join them.
In the immediate aftermath of these attacks, Emirati and Bahraini intelligence worked in cooperation with American and Saudi officials to determine the culprit of the attacks. They would not need to dig too deep, because the aggressor would soon announce its presence in the most obvious way possible.
After all, it is in a dragon's nature to roar.
The Peninsular Theater
6And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days.
-- Matthew 12:6
Before the true culprit revealed itself, however, there was another war raging across the Arabian Peninsula, one which had shaken the entire Islamic world to its core. The Gulf Cooperation Council had fully embraced its reliance on one another as a military alliance as the United Arab Emirates assisted Saudi Arabia in ridding itself of the Council for the Islamic Restoration of the Arabian Peninsula, and the Arab Republic of Egypt had also sent its Republican Guard to assist in securing the stability of its neighbor, and sometimes, friend. The Islamists reduced to the heartlands of its holy cities and their surrounding lands, the end was in sight. But one would be a fool to believe that radical Islamist jihadis would surrender Mecca and Medina without a fight.
The Battle of Medina | April 18th, 2028
With the blessing of the Muslim faithful and the righteousness of the faith on their side, the GCC coalition forces led by the UAE and Saudi Arabia descended onto CIRAP in Hejaz like a pack of wolves. The morning light was greeted with the roar of hundreds of tanks as the Gulf's armies began their assault. Managing to catch CIRAP forces off guard, the town of Mahd al-Thahab was quickly secured by the Gulf with minimal losses. However, this victory would not bring entirely good news. Upon confiscating the armaments of the Islamist soldiers in the town, the Gulf forces found that their enemy was much, much better equipped than they had anticipated. From small arms and ATGMs to MANPADS and artillery shells, it seemed that the Council had a benefactor supplying them with arms to resist the Gulf's onslaught. Interrogation of local forces yielded information that Mecca and Medina were much better fortified than anticipated, and the Gulf's general staffs prepared themselves for the long road ahead.
When the Gulf forces arrived at Medina, they found that it was exactly as the captured CIRAP soldiers had described it. The city was loaded to capacity with guns; mortars and artillery lay ready to open fire on any who would approach, and soldiers equipped with rocket launchers took up positions in civilian buildings to fire on those who would not dare attack a hospital, a school, or a mosque. The Islamists had even gone so far as to forcibly conscript as many able-bodied men as they could coerce into fighting, many of them mere children handed an AK-47 and told to shoot anything that came from the east. It seemed that the former domain of the Prophet would not fall easily.
War is Hell, and the Battle of Medina was no exception. While the Gulf coalition had a relatively simple task in encircling the city, the constant harrying of their columns by artillery fire and suicide attacks by the CIRAP zealots would inflict many a wound upon their soldiers. Even so, the combined forces of the GCC managed to set up a ramshackle siege. However, this was only the beginning of the fight.
Siege warfare is insidious; when faced with adversity, men stand together, but when faced with hunger and poverty, men turn against one another. The siege took a great psychological toll on the CIRAP forces, and videos began to surface on al-Jazeera, MEMRI, and other social media circles of Islamist soldiers raiding civilians' homes to steal what food and supplies they could get their hands on. One particularly gruesome clip showed two CIRAP troops breaking into a home, beating a single mother bloody with the stock of an AK-47 while her infant child cried from within its crib, powerless to help its mother, who would eventually die from her wounds. All of these incidents lent a moral authority to the Gulf. While most of the world had never considered the GCC the "good guys," they were certainly better than this monstrous alternative.
With their hearts set on the liberation of their brothers in the faith and their rifles in hand, the Gulf coalition jumped feet first into Hell. They advanced slowly and precariously through the streets of Medina, fighting alley to alley, building to building -- breaking new ground as they fought a modern war in a city that housed almost two million people. Novel tactics were invented on the fly as the coalition armies sought out new ways to protect their armored vehicles from ambushes and keep a keen eye out for snipers hidden away in blown-out shells of buildings. The prevalence of the infantry squad remained at its all-time importance as the ever-changing cityscape required close cooperation by small groups of soldiers in coordination with one another. In the darkest alleys where tanks and vehicles could not fit, it was the infantryman who took the fight to CIRAP and liberated Medina, street by street.
Video footage from the battle made its way to all the regular destinations. Enthusiasts, families, journalists, and military officers alike were witness to the destruction wreaked by the conflict; each had their own reaction and used the footage for their own purposes. While this was not a Western war and most Americans and Europeans kept up with it very little compared to the White Russian War of the early 2020s, the rest of the world watched with wide eyes. A journalist from al-Jazeera, one Ali al-Assad -- of no relation to the President of the Syrian Arab Republic -- had this to say, a message recorded in the midst of a devastating artillery barrage from CIRAP:
"I'm here huddled with a few other journalists and a squad of soldiers in what looks to be a blown out elementary school. The entire building is nearly reduced to rubble; we're only in here because it's the only roof that looked stable enough to withstand a few artillery shells, and even then, you can see that each of us are taking turns praying for our own safety. The fighting here is fierce. I have never in my life seen anything like it, and I pray that no one ever has to witness what I've seen in the past few days. I have seen women and children hiding away, fearing for their lives, refusing to come out even at the call of Saudi and Emirati soldiers. I have seen enough corpses, both civilian and soldier, to fill ten graveyards. I have seen row after row of destroyed buildings, many of which will never be rebuilt. I have seen Hell, and I pray that God wipe from my memory the things I have seen -- things that no man should ever be made to witness."
Eventually, CIRAP was finally pushed out of Medina entirely. However, it was not without cost. The Gulf suffered heavy losses in the fighting, with hundreds of soldiers dying and losing millions and millions in valuable military equipment. They paid a heavy price, but Medina was finally free from the tyranny of the Islamists as one of two holy cities of the Arabian Peninsula was back in Saudi hands.
The Battle of Dammam | April 20th, 2028
In the north, Gulf forces prepared for an assault on Dammam, the last stronghold of the PDF in the Arabian Peninsula. Unlike the Battle of Medina, this offensive would be relatively straightforward: the PDF operated mainly out of the countryside and struggled to maintain an effective presence in cities, so little would be needed in the way of a siege or protracted urban combat. The roar of tank columns and jet engines was almost enough to scare the PDF into surrendering; the actual devastation they wrought on the PDF emplacements was more than enough to break them apart. The PDF, a loose organization in the Peninsula, began to crack and tear away at the seams beneath the weight of the Gulf's offensive.
With Dammam secured for the KSA, the PDF's last major stronghold lies within Dhahran. The leader of the PDF in the Arabian Peninsula has sent a correspondence to the President of the UAE and the King of Saudi Arabia stating his intent to begin negotiations; he has made his position clear: the PDF will not surrender unconditionally, but has little desire to continue a war that it has no chance of winning, and is quite open to cutting its losses while it can. The decision now lies in the hands of the GCC on whether or not they will accept his offer or shatter his organization for good.
The Battle of Highway 85 | April 21st, 2028
The hydra that is the Islamic State had again reared its ugly head in the Peninsula. Clearly not learning anything from its multitude of past defeats, it established itself in the towns of Hazem and Arar along Highway 85 in the deserts of northeastern Saudi Arabia. With little by way of natural protection and zero local support, the IS forces were left open and vulnerable, and the Gulf coalition knew this, taking advantage of the opportunity for a decisive strike.
The fighting was short and sweet. UAE air crews made short work of weakly-defended emplacements as Emirati and Saudi infantry moved in to secure the areas shortly afterward. The fighting had not even reached the population centers by the time the IS cell had crumbled, and when GCC forces rolled into Arar, they found almost no trace of the Islamic State as they had fled into the desert. While their presence did not evaporate entirely, their central command did, leaving scattered groups in the desert to carry out meager attacks on military police and other open targets.
The Battle of Mecca | April 30th, 2028
As one wing of the Gulf's forces raised the Saudi flag over Medina once more, another wing crossed the perilous mountains to the birthplace of the prophet with the goal of liberating the city of Mecca. They had heard of the valiant struggle of their fellow soldiers in Medina and of the heavy price they paid to free the city. However, they were almost all ready to sacrifice their lives to liberate this holy city and return their home to normalcy. Many of them would follow through on that promise in the days ahead.
The Emirati and Saudi military leadership were not fools; they knew that radical Islamists would obviously not let the holiest city in Islam go without a fight. What they didn't expect was just how much of a fight they would put up. With a steady supply of Chinese and Qatari arms -- unbeknownst to the Gulf coalition -- what was once the shell of a guerrilla movement had reorganized itself into a semi-effective fighting force, and in a city as large as Mecca, a semi-effective insurgency force is one to be reckoned with. The story was similar to that of the Battle of Medina, but the resistance was fiercer as CIRAP was on its last legs. The fighters who managed to escape Medina alive had made their way to Mecca, and knowing that Jeddah would fall more easily than Mecca, CIRAP leadership ordered half of its forces on the coast to retreat into Mecca.
The strategic retreat of CIRAP from Jeddah led to an easy capture of the city by Gulf forces. It was becoming increasingly clear that CIRAP knew it would not survive, and that it was at this point merely determined to take down as many infidels as it could bring with it. Its death throes would be explosive; it would not go quietly into the night.
While the Gulf forces managed to encircle the city with relative ease, the siege of Mecca has seen suboptimal results. Suicide bombers, artillery strikes, and hit-and-run missions plague the Gulf supply lines and logistics chains. A host of soldiers equipped with anti-tank missiles and anti-air systems prevent any meaningful penetration of the city's interior. At this point, the Gulf coalition faces a decision: does it continue the siege, leaving the city's inhabitants to suffer as those of Medina did while maintaining the relative safety of its own forces, or does it muster up one final offensive to wipe the Islamists off the face of the earth? Whatever decision is reached will be bloody, and the world will always be left to consider what might have been had they chosen the other option. But such is the way and the cost of war: sacrifices must be made, regardless of the side taken or the outcome reached.
The Battle of Muharraq Island, Part One | May 12th, 2028
In Bahrain, the rebels had been reduced to a small strip of land off the coast of greater Bahrain. With an indefensible position in spite of Chinese arms assistance and a disorganized leadership, the GCC set out to cut the head off the rebellious snake before it could do any more damage. In a violation of the Chinese no-fly zone, planes from the UAE took off toward Muharraq Island to assist in the liberation of the area, setting in motion a chain of events that would change the world forever.
Immediately after Chinese radars picked up the signature of Emirati fighters en route to Bahrain, a wing of Chinese H-20 stealth bombers took off toward the two airbases of the UAE. The strike was swift and decisive; the UAE was caught entirely off guard while their best pilots were away and the bases were sufficiently disabled. However, China overlooked two important presences in undertaking this mission. The first was the presence of European Union forces within the UAE airbases, which saw their fighters and equipment destroyed in the attack. The second was the presence of the one nation that could stand against the might of the Dragon.
The Gulf Theater
7And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; 8and the dragon fought and his angels, and prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven... 14And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.
-- Revelation 12:7-8,14
Dragons are proud creatures. They live upon a great hoard of treasure, greedily devouring any wealth they come across while threatening to incinerate any who would dare oppose them. However, their pride is often their undoing -- every dragon knows that one day, they will face a knight who could slay them, but they assure themselves that this knight is not that knight. And today, the Dragon faced this realization.
The honor of the People's Republic of China was stained. The audacity of the Gulf Cooperation Council to place an oil embargo upon it could not go unpunished; despite warnings from the PLA general staff that China was not currently equipped to embark upon a full intervention and a personal ultimatum from President Tom Cotton that he would personally sink a hundred Chinese ships should they be so bold as to even think of standing against America, Premier Xi Jinping ordered the attack to continue. A great Type 002 aircraft carrier flanked by numerous smaller vessels made its way to the Persian Gulf with the intent of enforcing a no-fly zone over Bahrain. They were met by the might of the United States Navy's Fifth Fleet. Time stood still as the two titans stared one another down and dared the other to blink. After an eternity passed within minutes, Admiral Li Jiayi gave the order:
"Advance."
The Battle of the Strait of Hormuz | May 14th, 2028
Military strategists and political scientists have long wondered what would happen should the People's Liberation Army Navy and the United States Navy finally meet in combat. But despite this morbid curiosity, it was natural that none of them would ever actually wish for this to come to pass, as it could accompany the destruction of the world as it stands today. However, the world drifts toward entropy, and the fated collision between the two great superpowers that remained after the collapse of Russia had arrived to shake the planet to its core.
China had taken special care to not anger the United States in its mission. Admiral Li had even sent a message to the US Navy that Chinese forces would not interfere with US forces at any point, and insisted that their quarrel was only with the United Arab Emirates. But true to its ever-belligerent nature, it seemed that the United States would not take that as an answer. The moment the Chinese fighters jumped from the deck of the Type 002 carrier, a swarm of United States fighters rose to meet them. And thus begun one of the greatest turkey shoots of modern warfare.
Chinese air doctrine relies on the advantage granted to the PLAAF by fighting on its home turf. The Great Wall of Sand and army of anti-ship and anti-air missile emplacements that exist to defend the Chinese coast are essential to the formation of air strategy by the Chinese general staff; the PLAN is much less comfortable operating outside of its known waters. On the opposite side of this deadly coin, the US 5th Fleet has been operating in the Persian Gulf since the 1980s, making it essentially their home away from home. So when a confident and powerful defender stood against the attacker in waters foreign to them fighting a style of battle unfamiliar to them, it was clear that there could only be one real outcome.
The Battle of the Strait of Hormuz was the largest naval confrontation to happen until that point in the twenty-first century, and was an exemplary statement of American naval dominance. The moment that the F-22 and F-35 fighter jets opened fire on the inferior Chinese J-31s, J-7s, and Q-7s, the American submarine command -- hiding away, unbeknownst to China -- opened fire on the PLAN vessels, along with a swarm of Harpoon anti-ship missiles. While the People's Republic forces were able to land a solid few blows against the Americans, the battle was heavily one-sided and ended with the complete decimation of the PLAN strike force as the last few Chinese captains still floating relayed a message of surrender in desperation. The Dragon had been cast down by the Eagle, which reminded the entire world of its superiority in all aspects of war.
The Battle of Muharraq Island, Part Two | May 15th, 2028
With the Chinese strike force obliterated, the United Arab Emirates and Bahraini forces carried out their assault on the rebels, driving them off of the island and into the sea. However, the rebellion itself was far from over. The Gulf coalition did not know it, but in addition to the already-known fact that China was arming the rebels, they had engaged in a moderately effective propaganda campaign, rallying discontents in Bahrain to continue the fight. While the formal rebel army had been effectively scattered, it would be a long time before the small Kingdom would ever return to any semblance of normalcy, if ever.
The Global Theater
8And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.
-- Revelation 14:8
The Battle of the Strait of Hormuz -- an event that would soon be renamed to the Hormuz Strait Crisis due to being so one-sided that historians could hardly call it a battle -- marked a turning point in the course of the world as it was known, as a decisive blow was struck against the People's Republic of China, which was thought up to that point to be the premier rising superpower, the chairman of a new world order. In the Gulf, the people rejoiced at the sight of the Americans returning to their posts, heralding them as their saviors from the evil that was China, come to destroy them. In the same vein, a new wave of Sinophobia arose in the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the other GCC member states. The "Great Satan" rhetoric that many imams had once applied to the United States of America was now being applied to China, drawing on its mistreatment of Uyghur Muslim minorities within its own borders and its audacity to attack the Arabian Peninsula itself. In their effort to usurp the United States as a global military power, they had mistakenly usurped another title that America once held -- one it was more than happy to give away.
In the United States and Europe, China was now seen in a new light. The United States had never been friendly with China -- especially not President Tom Cotton -- but not since the COVID-19 outbreak had such a pure hatred for the People's Republic run rampant in the country. And this vein of disdain was much, much stronger than that felt in 2020. China had spilled the blood of Americans, and while millions across the country celebrated that America had repaid their black eye with a gunshot to the head, the restless blood of the fallen continued to cry out for vengeance. American boys now lie dead in the Persian Gulf at the hands of the Chinese menace, and that was a transgression that could not be forgiven. President Cotton, once lambasted as a fascist lunatic, has seen his popularity skyrocket. 89% of Americans approve of his handling of the Hormuz Strait Crisis and his popularity within his own party has exploded. The Republican Party has surged with him, with thousands upon thousands of Americans joining the party in excitement after the great victory over China, many of whom would go on to join the Republican Vanguard and sign up to live in Vanguard communities. At the same time, the Democratic minority that was against the intervention were subject to a barrage of criticisms. Hawkish Democrats did their best to distance themselves from the pacifists while Republicans assaulted their rival party with accusations of being spineless cowards who did not have the faith in the American spirit that they had, the faith to trust that the United States military could overcome any opposition and destroy any foe.
The European Union would not be spared the consequences, either. French and British forces were in the UAE airbases destroyed by China; while no European soldiers were killed, European militaries were furious that China would be so bold as to think of damaging their property. At the same time, Europeans were both afraid and angry. They knew that they could not defeat China alone, especially given the United States' shaky relationship with the EU as of late, but the people did demand some kind of retaliation. In a matter of years, the EU-China relationship soured from the point of talks regarding an FTA to the European public demanding that the Union levy some kind of sanctions against the People's Republic.
In Asia, the nations of Japan, Indonesia, Vietnam, the Philippines, India, and South Korea breathed a heavy sigh of relief. The annihilation of no small part of the PLA was an embarrassing setback for China, and was practically guaranteed to force them to scale back their military aggression to focus on rebuilding and retraining due to a lack of confidence in their own abilities. Two factions have primarily emerged from this sentiment: those who believe that China is a non-threat and that Asia can now afford to let go of its fear and move past the need to counter China militarily, and those who believe that the time is now to strengthen a unified Asian military front that can match China and ensure that Xi Jinping and his ilk will never disturb their peace again. India, in particular, has fallen victim to the second position, as many in the BJP believe that there is no time like the present to solidify India as a real contender that can stand against China for years to come.
Finally, no nation has felt the impact of the Hormuz Strait Crisis more than China. With the utter failure of the PLAN to break the oil embargo and the collapse of their proxies, it would seem that their efforts of propaganda spreading and cyberattacking the Gulf were extremely effective in creating a disturbance and nuisance that would plague them for years to come, but not effective in forcing the Gulf to lift the embargo, especially with the results of the battle between them and the United States. China's alternative methods to acquire oil were largely failures, and due to this, their strategic reserves are running all but dry. China has been fighting on two fronts for some time now -- in Kazakhstan and in the Gulf -- and this has decimated its supply of oil reserves. The Chinese economy buckles under the weight of the embargo and loss of confidence in the central government as growth slows down to a halt; for a nation like China that is dependent on continued growth, this spells a looming disaster. The PLA has delivered a simple message to the Premier: lift the embargo and let us actually operate in Kazakhstan, or call all of this off and rebuild the country. There is no alternative left.
As predicted, the entire world quakes beneath the footsteps of giants. The Gulf's embargo has not been without its own costs. Oil prices all around the world are skyrocketing as the war takes its toll and the embargo weakens the GCC economies, not even to mention the disruptions caused to the Ruwais Refinery in the UAE by China's digital offensive and the disruptions caused by China's meddling in the global oil market. Furthermore, the strain on China's economy has reduced its ability to act as the world's leading exporter of cheap goods. In an alternate timeline where India, Nigeria, or Brazil may have been in a position to take over this role, this blow to the world market would be lessened, but unfortunately, this is not that reality. The entire global economy buckles under the weight of the clash of titans, and growth is expected to be down across the board as supplies of oil and consumer goods contract, causing price spikes that hammer the average consumer.
The world has changed. And as empires rise and fall, the only true certainty is that in spite of all of our differences -- be they cultural, racial, religious, or other -- is that we live and die as one. And should the world continue to live by the sword, we may soon find ourselves standing face to face with our own destruction.
CASUALTIES: THE HORMUZ STRAIT CRISIS
Side Killed/MIA Wounded Aircraft Ships
United States of America ~340 ~900 4 F-16 fighters, 4 F-15E fighters, 2 F-35 fighters 1 Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, 1 nonspecific supply vessel, 2 Cyclone-class patrol vessels
People's Republic of China ~3,500 ~4,000 26 J-31C carrier fighters, 8 Z-18 medium helicopters, 10 Z-9 utility helicopters, 8 J-7 interceptors, 9 Q-7 attack/strike fighters, 6 H6-Z bombers, 1 Y-8 transport/patrol plane 1 Type 002 aircraft carrier, 5 Type 052C destroyers, 5 Type 054A frigates, 3 Type 093 SSNs, 4 Type 096 SSBN, 1 Type 094 SSGN
CASUALTIES: THE PENINSULAR THEATER
Side Killed/MIA Wounded Aircraft Vehicles
Gulf Coalition (Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Jordan, United Arab Emirates) ~9,000 ~16,000 2 F-16s, 12 attack helicopters, various supply aircraft 180 APCs, 110 IFVs, 160 MBTs, 200 MRAPs, various supply vehicles
Bahraini Rebels ~2,100; wiped out ~1,500 N/A N/A
Islamic State ~1,400; nearly wiped out ~1,000 N/A N/A
Popular Defense Forces ~3,300; nearly exhausted ~2,200 N/A N/A
Council for the Islamic Restoration of the Arabian Peninsula ~6,000 ~14,000 N/A N/A
[M] If there is an issue with casualties please bring it to me as I have no clue how this all works, and will gladly fix any mistakes I made. Hope y'all enjoyed this read; it was very fun to write.
submitted by planetpike75 to Geosim [link] [comments]


2020.08.27 06:37 Ralts_Bloodthorne First Contact - 292 - TOTAL WAR (Confederacy)

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There had not been many references to it in the data that the Unified Council could discover, but right before the Great Herd dispatched their might to crush the upstart Confederacy, the data was found.
The Pubvians.
According to the data, they were a herbivore species, three legs, two arms, a head. They primarily ate vegetation, were a three-sex species, and were largely peaceful. However, they were part of the Confederacy and the data the Lanaktallan managed to acquire showed the location of their homeworld.
The Great Herd knew that the Pubvians wouldn't need planet cracked. They had seats on the Confederate Senate but had not seated any members as far as the Lanaktallans could tell. Their seats and boxes were wreathed in black cloth, obviously to show that they refused to take part. A show of force and an occupation would be good enough to tear the Pubvians away from the Confederacy and possibly provide a new neo-sapient servitor species and a jumping point fro the Great Herd to colonize what was left of Confederacy Space.
Still, the Lanaktallan knew the system would be defended. They were part of the Confederacy, and the Confederacy seemed to almost fetishize weaponry.
The Corporate Fleet that dropped into the system had over a hundred thousand ships, ten thousand of them troop ships.
The Grand Most High of the 238a34 Task Force had suffered headaches, joint aches, the entire trip to the world. Of course, he'd spend a year in jumpspace, and the medical doctors aboard his ship had told him that his growth was possibly from such long exposure to jumpspace.
He ordered his scanner technician and his sensor techs to do a sweep of the EM wavelengths before he ordered his ship inward into the system. The rest of the Corporate Fleet roared forward, each eager to be the first on the planets, the first to take over the system, to be the Task Force that forced the Pubvians to surrender.
The Grand Most High frowned when his scanner technicians and sensor technicians reported that, aside from the stellar mass, there was no electromagnetic emissions. No artificial signals.
The system was quiet, except for the typical natural sounds a stellar system put out.
The Grand Most High ordered a gravatic scan thrown up on the main screen.
Yellow star. Fifteen planets, five of them gas giants. Two in the red zone toward the planet, one in the yellow zone toward the planet, two in the green zone, two in the yellow zone opposite, then the rest. Five gas giants with rings.
No moons. No satellites.
No signals.
The ships of the Corporate Fleet that headed for the gas giants reported nothing.
The Grand Most High ordered his troops to get in their armored vac-suits and get to battle stations.
This felt... wrong somehow.
He ordered his ships to head toward the outermost planet and to go slow.
No resistance so far.
The Grand Most High had been part of a Corporate Fleet that seen the lemurs utterly smash apart a Precursor AWM fleet of thirty harvesters and their supporting vessels, then rip apart a Corporate Fleet that outnumbered them 10:1.
If the Confederacy was truly here, the Corporate Fleet should have been engaged already. The Confederate ships, even those that weren't part of Space Force, had horrific ranges and punishing weaponry.
He knew for a fact, had seen it with his own eyes, that the Terrans could hit targets light hours away.
Where are they? he wondered as his ship drew closer to the barren outer planet, which had a thick ring around it.
"Bring our active sensors up. I want a scan of that planet," the Grand Most High said.
"It was quick-scanned. No energy readings, no shields," his sensor tech said. "It was bypassed by the Task Forces who were supposed to attack it."
"There's something wrong here," the Grand Most High said. "If this was Confederate Space we would already be under attack. If this was in actuality a Confederate species home system, half of our ships would be wreckage by now."
"They cannot resist us," his navigator said in the dead tones of a badly programmed computer speech synthesizer. "The Great Herd has never known defeat. All who attempt to stand before the Great Herd are trampled by its righteous hooves."
"I know, I know, faithful one," the Grand Most High said, feeling a stirring of an unfamiliar emotion. The ones who spoke like that reminded him of when he was a young colt and his little sister had been born dead. Like something he didn't know about until it was gone had been taken from him.
Many of them, most of them, no longer responded to their own names. A few, a handful, had proclaimed that they had different names than what was in the database, but most just went about their duties while occasionally spouting off rhetoric.
"Long range active scans coming back now," the scanning tech said.
"Anything?" the Grand Most High asked.
"Oh. Um, yeah," the scanning tech said. He reached up and pressed his upper palms against his side eyes. "Sorry, my head hurts."
"Just do your best," the Grand Most High said.
"A lot of the debris is metallic in nature," the scanning tech said. "There's plenty of debris of the material that makes up normal orbital debris rings, usually dust from moons that failed or left behind by comets or ejected from comet strikes."
"What kind of metallic debris?" the Grand Most High asked.
"Launching a drone," the sensor tech said.
"Beginning evasive stealth maneuvers," the navigator said.
There was silence for a long time, while the ship slowly changed position using minimal drive power and being careful not to light off their gravitic systems. Just reactionless drives that could be heavily shielded.
"Grand Most High, you're going to want to see this," the sensor tech said.
"The Grand Most High sees all," the point defense officer intoned from where the Grand Most High had tasked him to watching an empty plas cup on a chair instead of manning his normal station.
"Yes, yes I do, faithful one," the Grand Most High replied almost automatically. "Put it up on the main screen."
The screen changed from the system itself and the progress of the Corporate and Military Fleets moving inward to the debris field around the outermost planet. Normally just dust and rocks, a ring was little more than an object of appreciation and visually appealing, no threat or interest to a ship with debris fields.
Onscreen was a space ship.
Or rather, parts of space ships.
All of the hulks were dead in space.
No energy readings. No lights. No signals.
Just dead drifting hunks of metal.
A corpse in an armored vac-suit drifted into the picture and the drone focused on it. The faceplate was smashed, but the leathery vacuum dehydrated face was obviously Terran. The cybernetic eyes were dark and cold.
The probe moved in on the ship, sweeping by the crushed and shattered prow of a dead ship.
RNV Roy Batty was on the prow.
It had taken multiple hits, the armor cratered, pitted, slagged, torn open to expose the internal spaces. The probe focused on a gun battery with a lemur still strapped in, his dead hands on the controls, a large chunk of metal through the lemur's chest, pinning it to the seat.
"Something bad happened here," the sensor tech said quietly.
"I concur. Take the drone to the surface of the planet," the Grand Most High said. He turned to the navigator. "Take us upwards, still stay in full stealth."
The ship moved slowly through the darkness. Further in the stellar system the ships were landing on the planets, all of which had put up no resistance. The Task Forces assigned to the planets outside of the yellow zone were ignoring their targets and focusing on the planets in the green and yellow zones, all in a hurry to be the ones who forced the Pubvians to surrender.
The Grand Most High, he was feeling an odd feeling. It reminded him of when he had seen an elderly Lanaktallan pass out behind the wheel of a hovercar and slid toward the crowd. Not when it hit the crowd, not when he was positive it would hit, but when the car started swerving, before the elderly being had slumped.
A Terran would have told him it was dread.
The probe swept down, skimming across the surface. There was a lot of dust, a lot of crystallized frozen elements.
And a lot of craters.
One of the craters revealed machinery in the depths that was dark and unmoving. Some of the craters were surrounded by mangled and destroyed machinery and buildings. He could see lumps around the smaller craters and knew, somehow, that vehicles were under those lumps.
The probe suddenly swooped in on something.
It looked like nothing at first, but it had caught the probe's rather dim VI's attention.
"Is that a Terran?" the missile defense officer asked.
"It looks like it," the sensor tech said.
As it got closer it came into focus better. The probe put up size estimates based on shadows and laser ranging and the Grand Most High felt relief fill him.
The arm was nearly seventy-five feet high. It was a warmech. One of the giant warmechs the Terrans were so fond of.
"Get in closer," the Grand Most High said.
The drone was starting to move away when it got the order. It swooped back in, going over the warmech's structure. It's grav-engine, too small to be detected at any distance further than a mile, stirring the dust around.
"That's not the warmechs we've seen," the weapon's officer said.
"Thus falls all who face the Great Herd," the assistant engineering officer said from where he was sitting in front of a console, making sure that the round dot in the middle of the screen was there at all times.
"It looks... older," the Grand Most High said softly.
The Terran strapped into the seat had massive slashes across his chest, opening up his armored mech piloting suit to vacuum. The probe lingered over it, showing that the human had suffered explosive decompression of his internal organs. He also had something in his hand. Not his right hand, that had a pistol. Something in his off hand.
"Get closer," the Grand Most High ordered.
The thing in the lemur's hand came into focus.
The Grand Most High didn't recognize it.
The War Stallion mental engrams did.
A warrior caste Mantid's head, half of it shot away.
Reflexes kicked in and the navigator reacted to the surprise appearance of a Mantid warrior causing him to throw the ship into full reverse.
"CALM! CALM, MY BROTHERS!" the Grand Most High roared out.
The ship came to a stop.
The probe had moved on, moving to the hand of the giant warmech.
There was a crushed warrior mantid's in the fist, crushed black mantids with it. All of them dessicated from the mess the warmech's hand had made out of it.
Signals started coming back from the Military and Corporate Fleet. The Executor Fleet had come in while the Grand Most High was investigating the airless strange planet.
The planets in the green zone and the yellow zone had all been pummeled by orbital weapons, huge areas of plasma glass were everywhere. There were no cities intact, all of them were wreckage. The atmosphere, however, was clear of debris, clear of smoke.
The Executors ordered the craft to land. The soldiers to move out.
The Grand Most High snorted.
There was nothing left here. He could tell. Nothing had been here in ages.
"Incoming transmission from Executor Task Force 183f32 for you, Grand Most High," the communications officer said.
"Put it on my private screen," the Grand Most High said.
The image resolved into the black head of another Grand Most High.
"Why have you not entered the system? Your task force, according to my records, was slated to attack the second planet in the green zone," the other Grand Most High said.
"Data and intelligence gained upon arrival did not match," the Grand Most High said. "I have been attempting to gather data."
"And have you?" the Executor Grand Most High asked.
The Corporate Grand Most High was silent a moment.
"Hail to the Great Herd for their glory," the Corporate Grand Most High said.
"HAIL TO THE GREAT HERD!" six of his bridge crew yelled.
The Executor Grand Most High sighed and rubbed his face as some of his own bridge crew repeated it, which made the Corporate Grand Most High's bridge crew repeat it. It went back and forth until the Corporate Grand Most High hit mute to the count of twenty.
He opened the channel again.
"You too?" he asked.
"Yes. I as well," the Executor said.
"View this," the Corporate Grand Most High said, sending the data to the other's ship.
"I wish to bring in a few others. I will relate your data to them, but they too," the Executor said.
"They too as well as us?" the Grand Most High asked.
"They too," the Executor said. He looked down, then frowned. "That is... that is a dead Mantid."
"Killed by a Terran warmech pilot," the Grand Most High said.
"There is nothing for us here. The data was in error," the Executor said. He winced. "We will wait here."
"Grand Most High, my probe has discovered something!" the scanner tech said.
"Repeat it to my screen, brother," the Executor said. "I will transmit it to our brothers."
The Grand Most High nodded and patched the Executor in on the feed.
It was a battlefield. Largely covered by dust. Fighting emplacements had been hit by orbital strikes. Aerospace craft had crashed. Terran tanks of old designs mixed in with Mantid tanks that the Grand Most High could recognize. Damaged artillery pieces.
All of the reactors were cold and dead.
"Whatever happened here, happened a long time ago," The Executor said.
The Grand Most High heard another's voice. "Why would they leave a seat on their Senate for a species that no longer exists?"
"Respect," the Executor said. "They Mantid must have genocided this species, and that species must have been important to the Terrans."
The Grand Most High nodded. It made sense now that he had heard the explanation.
"The Mantid attack upon the Terrans was eight thousand years ago," another voice said.
"There is nothing for us here," The Executor said. "Get ready, we will jump out of the system and meet at these coordinates. You will wait for me there, brothers."
The Corporate Most High nodded his head. "As you will it."
"I will remain behind, see if there are any more of our brothers hiding within the rank and file," he nodded at the Corporate Grand Most High. "You seem to have good instincts, brother."
"I thank you," the Grand Most High said.
"You and your crew shall stay behind with me. I wish you to examine the worlds, attempt to understand what happened here," the Executor said. "Record it."
"May I ask why, brother?" the Grand Most High asked.
"To show the Council their folly," the Executor said. He closed all six eyes for a moment. "We were lucky, brother. This system is cold and dead, murdered long ago in the heat of battle."
"I will say a prayer for the Pubvians, brother," the Corporate Grand Most High said.
"A prayer for the warrior's rest should be fitting, brother," the Executor said. "Let us set about our tasks."
The Grand Most High ordered the ships of his Task Force to jump out to new coordinates. He stayed back with the Executor as the Executor moved forward, searching out for any brothers who, they too, were hidden within the masses of the empty ones.
He slowly scanned each world for nearly a week.
He found nothing but dust and death.
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2020.08.17 04:51 LouMing Find Laura: a Season 3 scene-by-scene analysis 2G

Previous Posts:
Finding Laura: Part 1: 1A1B1C1D1E1F1G1H1I1J1K1L1M1N
Finding Laura Sidebar: FWWM & TMP: Mr.. Mibbler’s Complaint A
Finding Laura: A Visual Abstraction A
Finding Laura: Part 2: 2A2B2C2D2E2F
Find Laura: a Season 3 scene-by-scene analysis 2G
Foreword
It’s surprising how complex this is becoming only two episodes in. But season 3 repeatedly abstracts and stresses a few moments, all of which point to Laura’s realization and resolution in Fire Walk With Me. That film (and its Missing Pieces) contains the core, essential imagery of Twin Peaks Season 3.
There’s also a structure in Fire Walk With Me that is similar, but not the same, as Season 3’s continuing abstractions of abstractions. In FWWM we see scenes as they are, and also as Laura experiences them. We see the core “true” scene and its abstraction through the “bad transformer” that is the mind of Laura Palmer. Some examples:
This occurs between the “dirty fingernails” dinner table scene and the “meeting above the convenience store” described by Philip Jeffries
It occurs between Laura’s panicked visit to the Hayward’s after seeing BOB in her bedroom and Jeffries’s transport from The Palm Deluxe Hotel to the FBI office and back.
It also occurs when Laura finally sees it’s Leland, not BOB, on top of her, and in parallel to the train car scene.
I’ll be writing a sidebar, probably once we complete Part 2, trying to analyze these FWWM abstractions in a more detailed fashion.
Meanwhile...
|| Calling Phillip Jeffries || Daria’s dead, a bullet through her brain. The Bad Cooper exits the bathroom, walks over to a table and sits. He puts a metal briefcase on the table and opens it, revealing a laptop and other electronic equipment.

It was established earlier by his interception of an alternate version of Ray’s phone call to Daria that the Bad Cooper can tap into the electrical transmissions of this dreamspace. And that in our “Find Laura” analysis this dreamspace exists inside the consciousness of Laura Palmer. So it is her psycho-electronic systems, the synapses and nerve pulses, that he is intercepting, interpreting, and influencing. I will point again to this key scene from the first season of the original series: Season 1’s “do you know where dreams come from?” scene:
”Acetylcholine neurons fire high-voltage impulses into the forebrain. The impulses become pictures, the pictures become your dream. But no one knows why we choose these particular pictures.”
It’s these neural pathways that the Bad Cooper accesses and uses to turn Laura’s dreams into nightmares. In some way perhaps the dark roads he drives are an abstraction of those neural pathways traveled by the acetylcholine neurons, the Bad Cooper being nothing more than a high-voltage impulse himself, fueled by the black fire, that symbol of something that Hawk describes as more like “modern-day electricity,” as our physical nervous system is electrical, not combustible.
Continuing with the idea of the murder of Daria as a replay of Laura’s death in the train car (itself an abstraction of a more-than-likely spiritual death), Cooper-or-Leland (each containing BOB) kill Laura-or-Daria. We see the plastic shower curtain/plastic tarp and towel ring/owl ring represented in each scene.
After Laura’s murder, Leland enters the Red Room (a hidden space within her subconscious) finding MIKE and THE ARM seated, seemingly waiting for him. Leland’s whole body leans forward, seemingly suspended, floating above the floor as Laura was tied and suspended above the floor from the train car roof.
After Daria’s murder the Bad Cooper uses his strange tech to tap into the neural pathways of impulse and instinct: an abstracted version of Laura’s subconscious, as is the Red Room. But this time he contacts something beyond the curtains of the Red Room.
BOB appears next to Leland who, now floating even higher off the ground, seems open-eyed but senseless. BOB faces MIKE and THE ARM who are now connected with THE ARM’s hand on MIKE’s shoulder (where the Arm was cut from) and speaking in tandem they demand BOB’s garmonbozia, which is pulled from Leland’s wound in his gut, thrown on the floor of and absorbed by the Red Room.
The idea of Leland’s wound is an interesting one. The implication being that while stabbing Laura he stabbed himself. The wound he suffers is in the gut, as Cooper’s gunshot wound is at the end of season 1. This is where the Bad Cooper is shot in Part 8 as well. Again, we’ll have to wait until later to explore all that.
The rejoining of MIKE and BOB temporarily repairs the split, as least subconsciously, that we see prior in the train car illustrated by the expulsion of Ronette from the train car and the murder of Laura within it. The Split is a theme we established in an earlier installment, one that echoes throughout season 3.
We’ll be seeing it again soon in the so-called “Mauve Zone.” In that instance, it will be Naido that is cast off and Ronette is left behind to direct Cooper on his way. But for now...
After Daria’s murder, the Bad Cooper plugs into the electrical field that is Laura’s subconscious (as Leland entered the Red Room of her subconscious), using the same kind of electronic tech that tapped Daria’s phone call. Philip doesn’t really exist anymore, not in the normal sense anyway, which is to say he has no physical presence within the dreamscapes, because Philip Jeffries was a physical manifestation, an abstraction, of something else that was rejected. But he still exists, cut off from manifestation, existing in the space between the two worlds of memory (past) and dream (future).
Philip Jeffries is associated, in The Missing Pieces, with the scene of Laura at the Hayward’s house, when she asks Donna at the front door, “Are you my best friend?” And ends with Laura yelling back, “I am the muffin!”
For Philip Jeffries, his entrance into the Palm Deluxe hotel in Bueno Aires (roughly translated as “pure air”) is diverted to the Philadelphia Office of the FBI.
Philip is the personification of a moment when Laura nearly spoke up, the sense of family in the Hayward living room giving her a moment of calm safety, a chance to *think).
But then the ring, the ring. The phone has a little ring. Don’t take the ring, Laura.
We may remember that this scene is also the source of the abstracted people in the shadows at the Cabin in the Woods. Abstractions of Doc and Mrs. Hayward accept pieces of paper from the departing Ray and Daria. This to me is the symbolic rejection of Doc Hayward’s “Angel Prediction,” leaving that proffered hope of redemption behind. A prediction Laura is forced to discard as the ring of the phone drags her back home.
Doc Hayward answers the phone, Laura loses the will of the moment, and Philip Jeffries is ripped from the Philadelphia Office of the FBI (to be direct, the FBI is Laura’s higher functioning mind, discombobulated by her trauma). Jeffries reappears on the stairs at the Palm Deluxe to find the maid crawling on the floor and the bellhop crapping his pants.
Donna walks Laura to the door, seeing but not understanding the depths of Laura’s dread. As she’s walking from the house, Laura turns to the Hayward house shouting, “No, Donna, you’re right! I’M THE MUFFIN!”
Philip Jeffries reappears at the hotel staircase moaning in agony, the bellhop shouts, “Mr. Jeffries, Santa Maria, where did you go!? ARE YOU THE MAN?!”
With Jeffries’s return to Buenos Aires, Doc and Mrs. Hayward, a kind Father and a gentle Mother in a wheelchair, are abstracted and reduced to a man who can‘t control his bodily functions and a woman too weak to even stand, left crawling across the floor in fear. They are no longer seen as saviors. They are too weak in Laura’s fearful mind to ever face BOB.
Philip Jeffries is a moment in time, a chance of escape lost when the secret thing was almost said out loud. When she entered their home, Laura literally did not know if Donna was her best friend. Because she just saw BOB seemingly become her father as he walked out of her home, fracturing her sense of reality.
We’ll see later in season 3 that Jeffries exists hidden behind the wall in the motel room at the Red Diamond Motel, where in FWWM Leland had paid to have group sex with Theresa Banks and her two friends. Those two friends were Ronette Pulaski and his own daughter.
There is no scene where Laura is seen recognizing Leland there, but there is an indication of something in the shot there of Laura from The Missing Pieces, a long hold on a soft focused, split-frame moment that feels like it’s trying to convey... something beginning at 2:00). Did Laura see him arrive? Is that why Jeffries “lives” in the hotel room? Was that where the seed of the knowledge of the truth about Leland and BOB was first planted in her mind?
In FWWM Laura sees the ring when in the presence of her father. When Leland “chickens out,” Theresa returns to the room and climbs on the bed with Laura and Ronette, and Laura sees the ring on Theresa’s hand as she brushes her hair from her eyes. Philip Gerard shows her the ring when he accosts Laura and Leland in their car saying, “It’s him! It’s your father!” And of course in the train car she receives the ring and, resigned to her fate as sacrifice, puts the ring on her finger.
Laura had a choice: to speak the truth to the Haywards in the safety of their living room (the Jeffries moment) or accept that her father is possessed by a demon, that one can become two (accepting The Ring).
In the context of Find Laura, Philip Jeffries represents the missed moment, the suppressed knowledge. He is its personification. He is in superposition as he both exists and doesn’t exist. He is found by going beyond the room above the convenience store, through the woods, up the stairs, into the motel parking lot, then inside the motel room, behind the radiator, inside the wall that opens like a curtain inside the room at the Red Diamond Motel. Here he is represented by one of the “transformer” devices seem throughout Season 3.
Unlike the other transformers, his device has a spout/vent that releases a steam or smoke in which Jeffries, looking like a flashlight beam, shines into it. The three terminals at the top of his device have had their connecting wires cut, symbolizing how the electrical impulse through which the knowledge he represents is permanently disconnected from the electrical circuitry of the consciousness of Laura Palmer.
That is, Philip Jeffries doesn’t really exist anymore. At least not in the normal sense.
For now however, Philip Jeffries is just a voice on the phone with the Bad Cooper, and soon we’ll find that this may not be Philip Jeffries at all.
Because there’s something else going on here. The Bad Cooper is “calling” Philip Jeffries, but the voice we hear is not the voice we will later hear as that of Jeffries. Like when the Bad Cooper is interviewed in prison, electronic communications alter the voice of these beings that exist beyond the individual dreamscapes pitching them lower, at least sometimes. But in this case, Jeffries has also lost his distinctive Texas accent. In fact, as the above link demonstrates, when adjusted back from the pitch-shifting, the voice on the phone sounds like it was originally female.
What this means in our analysis is that what is “on the phone” with the Bad Cooper isn’t the personification of a lost chance of salvation; it’s a deeper fear that the Bad Cooper doesn’t know about. The personification of the White Horse, the thing that remained when the Red Room curtains blew away. Judy.
This conversation implies that Judy desires the Bad Cooper’s time to end. This ending means BOB stays when the Bad Cooper leaves. And on the phone Judy says she will then be with BOB again, whatever that means.
The rest of that “phone call” made by the Bad Cooper mostly deals with exposition in service of the surface narrative and setting up for the Buckhorn prison break of that fucker Ray, which we are not that interested in here. But prior to the call, the Bad Cooper had just re-enacted the train-car murder of Laura. Let’s look even closer to see if this phone call can be aligned with Leland’s actions around that murder.
|| Time and Time Again || We’ll start by rewinding back to Leland’s arrival at Leo’s cabin in the woods. His arrival coincides with Jacques tying Laura up as she protests. I noted in a previous installment that when The Red Room Laura is asked if she is Laura Palmer, her response is, “I feel like I know her but sometimes my arms bend back,” and that implies that being tied up either allowed or caused Laura to disassociate, a mental escape that would be supplanted by her discovery of the path to the Red Room thanks to Mrs. Chalfont and Pierre.
After tying up Laura (which triggers the electrical flashing of the “bad transformer” that creates Laura’s hallucinations), Jacques stumbles out of the cabin, only to be attacked and knocked unconscious by Leland.
At the Bad Cooper’s arrival at the Cabin in the Woods in Part 1, a man comes down the steps to stop him and the Bad Cooper knocks him out as he enters.
In Fire Walk With Me, Leo soon follows Jacques out the door, swaying drunkenly until he realizes that Jacques is unconscious and bleeding from the nose and mouth. So Leo runs to his car and leaves.
Leland enters Leo’s cabin and begins terrorizing his bound daughter. He takes Laura and Ronette out of the cabin and seemingly runs them through the woods.
In Part 1 at the Cabin in the Woods, the Bad Cooper enters and sits across from Otis. He looks around and sees what we have noted previously as an abstraction of Doc and Mrs. Hayward in the scene from their home in The Missing Pieces. Buella steps out and the Bad Cooper asks if she has “Ray and Daria back there.”
She does have them back there and they come out, walking in near lockstep past the “Haywards,” each handing over a slip of paper as they pass (Doc Hayward’s guardian angel prediction is surrendered at the arrival of BOB/Leland/the Bad Cooper). So here is the abstraction of Laura’s leaving the Hayward house for the last time, as described above.
The Bad Cooper takes away Ray and Daria from the Cabin in the Woods as Leland dragged Ronette and Laura from Leo’s cabin in the woods.
I’ve already compared the murder of Daria to the “murder” of Laura. So let’s move to the aftermath.
After casting Laura’s plastic-wrapped corpse onto the water (floating in a probably impossible way in the shallow water), Leland experiences something (regret? guilt?) shown as a white-faced, black-lipped grimace that matches Laura’s face when overcome with the “fire” at Harold Smith’s house.
He then approaches the circle of Sycamore trees, and enters the Red Room. Now, in this analysis the Red Room is the place Laura has secreted away her consciousness, a physical manifestation of her self-disassociation. It is not a science-fictional portal to another dimension.
Her idea of Leland is coming to face Laura’s judgment on what he has done to her. Inside, subconsciously, she knows Leland and BOB are one and the same. This is what she consciously cannot face, although subconsciously here she already knows the secret, and uses BOB to “heal his wound,” to forgive him.
There are a few subtle references to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ in FWWM, but it feels like they are intentionally obscured to avoid putting too fine a point on it: Major Briggs reading from the Book of Revelations (who is abstracted into a God-like presence in Part 3), the shot in the train car (abstracted in Season 3 behind the face of Sarah) of Laura’s palm, in shadow pierced by light mimicking Jesus’ wounds on the cross, and most subtly in a quick scene that appears, seemingly without context, of the Twin Peaks Methodist Church on a Sunday morning as the people leave from the service on the morning after Laura and Donna’s night at the Pink Room.
Laura appears in the Red Room as MIKE and THE ARM, rejoined together. Leland stands before them, and then leans forward hanging, suspended as Laura was in the train car, and then lifted high in the air with BOB now a separate entity standing beside Leland’s silent, floating body.
Speaking as one MIKE and THE ARM demand all their “garmonbozia” (pain and sorrow). BOB reaches up toward Leland’s stomach, wounded and bloody, and seemingly pulls the pain and sorrow from the gut-wound of Leland (the blood stain on Leland’s shirt disappearing), and then casting it onto the floor as a splatter of blood. The blood is absorbed into the Red Room floor, and then in extreme close-up we see THE ARM consuming creamed corn (garmonbozia) from a spoon.
Leland’s gaslighting of Laura, his years of pretending to be a loving father while alternately traumatizing her regularly, prevented her from processing her feelings, of owning her own “pain and sorrow.”
But here in the Red Room hidden away from reality, Laura (as the reconnected MIKE and THE ARM) can see Leland and BOB as two separate entities (as she did in the train car fantasy under more terrifying circumstances). And here “Leland’s wound” as it is called in the script is “healed.” The “pain and sorrow,” the sympathy for the victim that rightfully belongs to Laura, is returned to her here, if only through a conscious belief in the lie of BOB.
Because that is too much for her to process in reality, so her peace exists in this place, and having sacrificed herself, takes on the sins of her father and forgives Leland for what he has done. But as a final reminder of “unfinished business,” the monkey whispers in a blue-tinted close-up from the darkness, the last word: “Judy.”
Next: Chantal
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Thanks! Lou Ming
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2020.08.03 21:39 rienquelaverite Hidden sex zone

I live tremendous problems, sometimes arriving unexpectedly. Now after some apartements that were noisy, i took a new one and its moldy as fuck, and may be dangerous to live in.
In the meantime, i met some people, some friends, and some girls that could (just could) be more.
I texted her about something i promessed to send to her, because i felt to.
She asked me back "how are you?", i should say that i'm french and we use to respond with hearth so if we aren't feeling well it's not like usa where we are supposed to say good all the time even if not.
It's especially important to me for someone i could like, because it's something like engaging an hearth to hearth relationship. Don't ask me why, i'm 30 and i'm like that.
But when i have problems i feel blocked. Someone that set himself in a moldy environment is not someone attractive. But at the same time, if you loose the connection usually it's over. You have to keep the first connection going on.
It's important too because i also have the same reaction with a lot of people that are same sex (i'm not gay) / just possible friends / social relations in general. I often feel i can't say "i'm fucking dupper frustrated and feel horrible and in a shitty situation". Who would find this attractive? Nobody.
At the same time, like everyone else i need social acquintances and i need to flirt.
Right now i have the scenario with this girl : i really liked her and it's been long time i didn't went with a woman, i thought it's potential. So i started to discuss etc. I thought i would get myself out of my (older) shitty situation and find the perfect apartment. But it's actually worst or an other shitty situation : i didn't noticed it was moldy (all was hidden to make it look ok), the smell, etc.
So now i have this. What should i do? I also know that saying something honest like "not much, housing problems" could start a friend zone that i don't want.
I just feel blocked, my guess (if girls read me) is that as a girl, you don't want to know about his shitty problems about someone you are lightly only interested in, you want him to just be good and positive.
But maybe other way of thinking i couldn't think of apply.
Thanks for any clue

bye
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2020.08.03 02:47 digitallyfree Hidden zone sex

First - Previous - Next
/digitallyfreestories
Chapter 10
The woman’s face flickered, and my mind jolted and flashed back.
I saw two figures standing near me, followed by a taller third in the background. My head snapped up to see them more closely and I noticed that I was much smaller than before. The dining table beside me and the people standing around were enormous.
Wait a minute. I recognised the irregular wooden legs, legs that I’d personally fixed. The stained walls. A fire burned in the stone brazier, an alternative to the fireplace when we only needed a bit of light.
This was my home. I’d kept it around for a few years after I’d moved into Thomas’ place, but we finally decided to sell it to Mela’s growing family - she’d needed it. My foster father lived alone in a brick house, with bedrooms to spare and electric power courtesy of the Wheelhouse alternator. There had been more than enough room for all the belongings and memorabilia I’d chosen to keep.
My breath slowed as I recognised the group. Dad was packing items into a saddlebag, Mom was preparing her rifle. A human traveller stood near the door, her dark eyes peering into mine. A stuffed bear was in my hands, sown by my mother and gifted on my birthday.
I was six. And that was the day my life was shattered.
“We’ll be back in a few days,” Mom said. “Aida will be taking care of you, she’s the only one who volunteered on such short notice.”
I watched in silence as my parents hugged me, then the tears came. They continued as Aida finally showed up, and Mom had to pull my hand from hers so that the village midwife could lead me out. We stood by the fence and waved as they rode off. Until they faded away into the darkening forest.
“It’s just a hunting trip, you know how those rich city folk are,” Aida said dismissively. “Your folk will be paid well for this.”
“I still want them to stay,” I replied.
These trips weren’t exactly common, and I’d always waited with anticipation for them to return. I won’t bother saying that it was the last time I saw them alive, or mentioning the rising tensions in my heart as scouts went out to look for them. Then the waves of anger and grief as the human radioed back the news. Wild beasts had attacked their camp at night.
A team had headed out to recover the bodies, or what was left of them. The funeral pyre and eulogies did nothing to ease the pain. My parents had come to Arnela after a dispute in their own village, rumor said it was something about refusing an arranged marriage. They were well-liked in the community and did more than their share.
Somehow, Thomas had managed to persuade the elders that he was the best choice to take care of me.
The memory faded, and I looked again at the woman beside me. Her body had rejuvenated into her twenties, with long black hair and flawless skin. She sat straight on the bench, her original hunched back nowhere to be seen. Even her long dress had been replaced by a more practical jacket and leggings.
She was the human that had left with my parents. And a bloody shapeshifter as well.
“Why have you come back?” I breathed. I was already focusing my mind on my phone, and the tag I’d placed on the volume control. All I got was a bead of perspiration on my forehead.
“Calm down,” the woman said. The flow of magic within me was responding normally, but it dissipated into nothingness the moment it left me.
I could still feel my arms and legs, but only via my physical nerves. Over on the other side of the fountain, I saw Hans hobble into the room. His steel cane clacked loudly on the tiles as he stepped closer to my bench. If there was any kind of recognition or surprise, he didn’t show it.
Hans was a solid mage, retired and living in the upper section of Burns. I watched as he put a hand to his temple, his head bowing slightly as if he felt pain. The man muttered something about a migraine and turned to leave the room.
“No one can see or hear us,” the woman said firmly. She’d lifted her kind facade, but I didn’t detect a sinister edge to her voice. “As you can see, I’m holding a null sink around your head and am deterring anyone that comes too close.”
“We have roving patrols,” I said quickly. “You won’t get away with this.”
“Patrols, huh?” The woman smirked at me, and I could feel her coiled energy behind the sink. “I got through your supposedly impenetrable security field easily enough. Don’t worry, I didn’t kill anyone - though I could’ve trashed the place if I liked.” She paused. “Call me Sian.”
I’d forgotten the name she’d used back in Arnela, but it was definitely a pseudonym. Perhaps Sian was one too. A mage could easily create an illusion by placing a veil on top of their original features, but the energy expenditure was draining and easily detected. Shifters directly worked on the bone and muscle, either permanently or under a time-limited elastic approach. Those ranged from mild beautification to complete disguises varying in age, race, and sex. It was a risky process with the potential for death and disfigurement.
Creating a new identity could take months of effort, with most of the time spent on ensuring that you could shift into the same shape consistently. The skill was extremely rare and I’d never seen it performed in person. I was staring at a very powerful mage, one who was sinking all my energy without a sweat.
“You’ve done all this for something. What do you want?” I challenged. I tried to keep the fear out of my voice, but I knew it came out poorly. The bass notes of my thrumming heart made it worse.
“I just want you to hear a story.” Sian grasped my hand tightly and my vision shifted. I saw bits and pieces of her memories, each ranging from several seconds up to a minute in length. My subconscious helped fill the gaps, but I still experienced blurry spots and timeskips.
I saw my parents from her eyes, the low-light imagery exceptionally clear despite her lack of Elven senses. They rode hard till dusk, finally stopping to camp near a brook. Their old canvas tent was pitched up beside Sian’s synthetic one as they set up a rotating watch. I knew the three of them chatted occasionally, but the exact words were unclear.
Another memory jumped in place, this one at daybreak as they set off once more. Sian had taken the lead, her grey mare trotting a good hundred meters ahead. The sky was clear and bright spots of light filtered in from above the canopy. She seemed to be searching for something, but I couldn’t tell what. Her memories had their magical components suppressed.
“We were going hunting, yes,” Sian said in the background. As my senses were tightly focused on the visions, her voice sounded like a deity booming in the back of my head. “However, we weren’t hunting game, but rather a rogue mage.”
I wanted to speak, but the imagery stuttered and began to fade as soon as I tried to open my mouth. Knowing I would break the illusion, I pulled back and kept watching. Sian seemed to read my thoughts and answered my question.
“They knew perfectly well what they were going into,” she said. “I needed a guide familiar with the area, and I paid a lot for their silence. They knew the money would go a long way in helping them - and you as well.”
Like that made me feel any better. I’d found a stack of Atlantean bills hidden away in the cabin, and Sian had also provided additional money to the community after she reported the deaths.
“If you’re mad at me for this, I understand,” she continued casually. “But what’s done is done, and please keep watching.”
I grunted at her, and felt the memories slip as well. Signing, I fought back the emotions and let myself immerse back into her world. The viewpoint shifted as they dismounted and tied the horses to a tree. Sian snapped out a spell, and the animals disappeared. Even the hoofprints on the ground were nowhere to be seen.
We were somewhere near the western part of the Bellows, the trees thick and terrain rough. The hours passed by rapidly and it was soon evening. Dad led the way along a game trail, steadily ascending a small hill. Sian reprimanded him when he smashed through a shrub with telekinesis.
“He might be able to sense that,” she said sharply.
The group crawled up to the edge of the ridge, moving stealthily on hands and knees. I saw the faint shimmer of Sian’s spells - she was shielding their visual and magical signatures. Likely those spells were weak and synched with the background energies of the area to minimize detection. Everyone had local flora attached to their ghillie suits and additional camouflage netting over their weapons. The sun slowly fell at their backs.
My parents both carried their G3s, which I knew had not been recovered after their deaths. I’d asked Thomas why they didn’t bring more conventional hunting equipment, and he’d shrugged and said that their job was to protect the client, not hunt game. Now I knew better. A hail of bullets could stop even a skilled mage in his tracks.
I wished I could sense Sian’s magical energies, for she clearly was probing and sensing as far as she dared. Eight meters to her left, Mom was scanning the valley below using a set of infrared binoculars Sian had lent her. The hardened circuitry that was required to operate high tech gear in a Zone V environment must’ve cost a fortune.
There was a soft rustle as my parents shifted their weapons, likely in response to sound. My vision stuttered and I felt my viewpoint extend outwards into the trees. The darkening bark suddenly was replaced by the false-color reds of a rabbit running past a thermal imager. Sian chuckled softly, and the tension visibly relaxed.
“I have bionics,” Sian remarked. “And to answer your next question, I run active spells on them so they work even in the shittiest conditions.”
Suddenly, the sky glowed as a lightning bolt whipped down from above, landing right beside Sian. The blast forced Sian to release her guards, and I literally saw the air ripple as she released her pent-up energy at the caster. An explosion boomed down below, uprooting the trees at the epicenter and splitting the trunks of those further away. Beasts howled and shrieked as the shockwave echoed throughout the valley.
Gunfire rattled from the G3s as Sian rushed down the ridge, leaping down a sharp cliff with ease. She shed her ghillie in a flash, the fabric and plants disappearing into dust. A dark figure moved in the distance, and even without magical senses I felt the energy steaming off him.
“That’s Crede, the one we were looking for,” Sian said in the background. “I’m still sour that he got the jump on me.”
Crede moved constantly, shields up to dodge any stray rounds heading in his direction. Sian advanced towards him, guards up. She shouted something at him, and he waved an arm in response. He must’ve known he was outnumbered and fighting a superior mage. A guided burst finally found him, and he smoothly took the first two shots on his shield before smoking the remaining bullets to slag. Sian continued to step closer, likely saving her energy.
The two mages stood in a fresh clearing, the foliage blown away by the initial explosion. Deep ruts scratched the earth below, and the floor was littered with natural shrapnel and ash. Crede wiped his bloodied face with his palm, energy shimmering from his fingers. The long cut on his cheek immediately clotted with a rough substance and stopped the flow. It would take additional work to heal the wound, but he could be assured that it wouldn’t split again.
Sian attacked, and Crede reeled backwards. It must’ve been a mental attack, and Crede was battered but his shields held. He responded by flinging dirt in the air, the flow growing in intensity and forming a new rut in the ground. I watched as flaming trees extinguished around him, and knew that Crede was likely feeding the spell using the power of flame. That suspicion was confirmed when additional fire flared up from the trees surrounding the clearing, small blazes burning in all directions. Splitting them would make it harder for Sian to target, and the dry wood would catch and spread easily. I was reminded of the shitshow in the Regal that right now seemed all too long ago.
The dirt rose, forming a firm barrier between the two mages. Sian targeted the nearby wood and iced the substance. She’d powered the spell off her own reserves, and I smiled thinly as I saw the slight shimmer of ice over the wooden handle of Sian’s knife. I noticed the air was drier than before, meaning she’d performed a nontrivial deposition to get the necessary moisture. The fires burnt away as the barrier stopped moving.
“You asked for it!” Sian shouted at Crede. I heard his footsteps behind the wall, which was taller than they were. “I’m not toying with you anymore.”
“He had a tactical reason for the wall, however wasteful it looked,” Sian remarked. “You can’t see it on your end, but the mound was packed tight and actually bulletproof. Those big 7.62s take a huge toll on your reserve, and your parents are excellent shots.”
Sian shrugged and teleported through the dirt, knife in hand. Time slowed automatically as she ran her mind at full speed. Her blade extended outwards while she was still ghosting, the split-second moment where one was in between reality and the ether. Still not fully formed in matter, Sian moved with lightning speed and penetrated through his personal shield with ease. The translucent blade was embedded into his heart, and would finish him once she fully materialized.
I’d teleported before and knew the difficulty of the task. You could move briefly when materializing, often an inaccurate jerk to avoid materializing directly into an object. The kind of precision I saw looked almost impossible. Normally, I’d have put my bets on Sian to finish him right there and then. Fate does not treat me nice though.
The mound shattered, lighting splitting the air as its stored energy was released. Crede disappeared instantly, leaving Sian standing with a bloodied blade. He reappeared several meters away with a smug expression on his face.
“Crede did this on purpose,” Sian said. “He tagged the corners of the wall beforehand before shunting the fire’s energy into his spell. The distance from the corners to the mound was sent back into the spell as negative feedback, which is why it grew more slowly the bigger it got. Since the feedback acted as a limiter on the growth, not the transfer, the remaining energy was stored in the dirt itself. It dissipates fast, but it’s great for events like this.”
Something at the back of my head wished she’d explain instead how Crede could’ve teleported so quickly. In some morbid way, I actually enjoyed watching this and hearing her explanations. It was quite something to see a fight take place from the perspective of a top mage, feel what she was feeling, and listen to a running commentary at the same time. Thomas had shown me memories before, but those were fast and fleeting. This was something else altogether.
Crede hadn’t escaped the encounter unscathed. A rapidly coagulating stab wound was visible on his breast, a couple inches from the heart. His right lung was likely ruptured and the man’s breathing was ragged. I noticed that my parents had left the safety of the ridge, running and firing as they moved towards the edge of the clearing.
Going after Sian in his injured state would be suicide. With a roar, Crede charged up and rushed my mother.
I was normally aiming for a 3-act series, with the second act focusing on Erica training up, meeting city folk, and generally exploring the world around her. The third act would have them go up against the interlopers that started this mess in the first place, and fight for the binary tap. My original planning focused on that kind of story.
I've decided to spice things up, and I've completely rewrote this Chapter 10 from my original plan to hopefully make the story more interesting. I have a general idea for the new direction everything is taken, and will figure things out as I go. It's a dark world that my characters live in, and I want Erica to experience more than just having her stuck up in a protected place with Thomas and the others.
For this week's note, I'll go through the different Zones and how they affect electronic equipment. Remember that as the deeper one goes into natural areas, the residual magical energies become stronger and electronic equipment starts to become more unreliable. The effects are similar to those seen in high EMI or high radiation environments (but it does not harm people). While electronics and RF weaken in those areas, magic becomes stronger and mages can use it to their advantage.
Below are my personal rules for the Zones. They do not scientifically correspond to high EMI/rad settings, but are a guide for my writing.
Zone I

Zone II
Zone III
Zone IV
Zone V
Zone VI
Zone VII
Zone VIII
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