In a Space

Aug. 19th, 2017 04:00 am
frith: Light pink cartoon pony with dark pink mane (FIM Pinkie sly)
[personal profile] frith
Spaced [94]

Spaced out pony in [a] space! That's my story and I'm sticking to it, like sticky candy on a caramel apple! What? Those things are goood!

The beatings will continue until mood improves -- again with the nap that has me waking up in the wee hours and sketching past the deadline. Drawing lines, circles, plotting points, connecting the dots then re-drawing curves over top until the shapes fit together and look something like the original. And still getting it wrong. Eyes don't match. Practice practice practice.

(no subject)

Aug. 18th, 2017 08:49 pm
kore: (Default)
[personal profile] kore
MOI: //is tired out from all the drama, rereads some James Baldwin, takes a nap

MOI: //wakes up

T: A whole bunch of people are leaving the government!

MOI: wha

T: One whole department resigned en masse -- the President's Committee on the Arts & the Humanities

MOI: who the wha how

PCAH: "Ignoring your hateful rhetoric would have made us complicit in your words and actions. We took a patriotic oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.
"Supremacy, discrimination and vitriol are not American values. Your values are not American values. We must be better than this. We are better than this. If this is not clear to you then we call on you to resign your office, too."

MOI: //squinting at T's phone screen Holy shit Icahn resigned?

T: //looking like a kid on Christmas morning YUP

MOI: ....I'M TAKING ANOTHER NAP

Vacation in 3-2-1

Aug. 18th, 2017 08:37 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
As of 5:00 pm Eastern Time, I will be on vacation for a week.

Last night, instead of gym, I did this week's laundry so when I come back with a suitcase full of dirty laundry, I will...have more laundry. But new laundry, not old laundry.

I think I'm finished packing, as well. My big suitcase has everything from my clothes to my laptop; hopefully, I can get it down all the stairs without trouble. I suppose I could move the laptop and such into a knapsack if I had to.

A break will be good.

Special Talent Prompt

Aug. 18th, 2017 04:14 am
frith: Violet unicorn cartoon pony grinning like Cheshire Cat (FIM Twilight crazy)
[personal profile] frith
Barking_Mad [99]

It took me awhile to settle on which pony doing what for this prompt. Screw Loose's innate talent is to be barking mad, apparently. That and to keep the hospital ponies occupied. Work is made, complexity is added to Equestrian society, everypony is fulfilled. Weird wild web of commensuality. Road apples, gotta go back to bed, alarm goes off in an hour.
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
[personal profile] jazzfish
Currently reading Freedom and Necessity, and enjoying it, as expected. One thing I hadn't expected: the print feels tiny. Unsure if this is just a natural result of Getting Old or if it's actually small. There doesn't appear to have been an ebook release, which makes me a little sad.

Gonna be a busy fall, bookwise. Just preordered new books from Kat Howard, Ann Leckie, eBear, and Steve Brust. Need to get on with that Great Big Dragarea Reread prior to late October. At least the eBear won't demand my immediate attention: reading Book One Of A Trilogy is a mistake I try to avoid making when the author is known to write bound book-fragments.

I biked for an hour and a half yesterday, going to a small get-together that may be the kind of thing I'm looking for. Mostly, a good ride, if overly sweaty, and tough going uphill. There's an exhilaration in a steep downhill, though, and a long gentle decline makes for a pleasant coast.

It occurred to me last week that my hip problem likely isn't just from wallet-induced sciatica. It's also possibly a result of babying my right ankle (and hence leg) for several months after I twisted it pretty sharply (CW: depiction of trauma, neither graphic nor permanent). So there's that.

Erin pointed out awhile ago that I do a lot of railing against the Confederacy (sometimes on FB, sometimes in person). I grew up hating everything about the South: the weather, the people, the history, the culture. I've mellowed on that a lot in the last decade or so, but Treason In Defence Of Slavery still gets me wound up. I think it's that it's a reminder of everything I hated about the South. Or maybe just that it's a part of my upbringing that's still acceptable to hate.

And in actual significant news, I've lost a friend over the breakup. One that I know of, I mean. I'd hoped for some compassion and understanding but it was not to be. I'm sad, and a little surprised, but only a little: she's prickly, far more invested in Emily's emotional state, and I suspect skeptical of the whole poly thing anyhow. (A conclusion I draw from sentences like "Since November I've watched you break up with Emily in slow motion.") Losing friends I care about doesn't get any easier. Especially not when they've been good friends and sources of support in the past. Oh well. She's not quite burned the bridge, I guess. She's poured gasoline on the bridge, offered me a book of matches, and walked away. Best I can do is not actually light the fire and be here if and when she changes her mind.

Overall? Still flailing around, still trying to sort out what I want my life to look like and how to make it look like that.

This is What Democracy Looks Like

Aug. 17th, 2017 09:06 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
The anti-racism march went well; a friend estimated maybe 3000 people attended (the news said 2200, but they based that on replies to the Facebook invite!). A kind soul had brought a pile of ACLU posters to hand out, so I got a "Black Lives Matter" one, which fit the occasion.

I skived off before the speakers, though, as I was pretty tired and had a long walk home. I'm counting that as exercise because my leg muscles certainly felt it.

I met a baby whose dad said this was her first protest outside of the womb. She was really cute. I saw another insanely cute toddler later on, who had disposed of one of her shoes...I didn't rat her out, though, she was giving me the sweet eyes. Also the mom was talking to the dad and I didn't want to interrupt.

Never did manage to meet up with Camille and Barbara, and didn't see Lionel and Shani and their kids, but did run into Amey from choir, Vash from the writing community, and C.'s cousin Grace.

Running Late

Aug. 17th, 2017 04:37 am
frith: Light blue cartoon pegasus with rainbow mane and tail (FIM Rainbow evasive)
[personal profile] frith
Race_the_clock [102]

I had nearly finished this hours before deadline... and then I had to rest my eyes. Now it's well over an hour past deadline. One little pony in great distress, searches everywhere for a saddle-like dress. If she can't find one smaller than small, then she can't go to the Ponyville Ball.

Back to bed for 50 minutes of sleep before the alarm goes off.
kore: (Watergate - guilty guilty guilty!)
[personal profile] kore
This goes into the history of the Klan in US politics and it's amazing. Truly freaky photos I have never seen before of tens of thousands of KKK members marching in DC in the 20s.



(What I knew about this before watching the segment: "Al Smith was the Catholic governor of New York who split with FDR and was from LES" and the only reason I knew that was because of [profile] muccamuck talking about their historical Cap fic research)

And then she did a great interview with Carol Anderson, author of White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide, which is amazing.

Anderson's original article in WaPo in 2014 about Ferguson and the backlash of white rage

America is hooked on the drug of white supremacy. We're paying for that today

Why Are Whites So Angry? (NYT review of her book)

Interviews with Carol Anderson on C-SPAN

This was also great: Racism Is 'A Persistent Infection' In White American Culture | Rachel Maddow | MSNBC

Wednesday Reading

Aug. 16th, 2017 08:44 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
I seem to be on a nonfiction binge.

Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud: The Rise and Reign of the Unruly Woman by Anne Helen Petersen is a series of essays on various "non-conforming" female public figures from Serena Williams to Caitlyn Jenner. Each essay shows how perceptions of their public personas interact with American cultural norms and the backlash than ensues. I liked that each chapter focused on a different type of non-conformity. It was a fast, entertaining read, though I did bristle at one passing reference to "Harlequin romances," a phrase which appeared to be used as metonymy for the Romance genre. Really, honey?

From the introduction: this book considers the costs and benefits of smoothing one's sharp edges just enough to make it onto the cover of Vanity Fair or into the pages of GQ, multiplexes across America, or the White House--and the implication that unruliness is still largely the provenance of women who are white and straight.

Favorite quote: It's one thing to argue that you belong--it's another thing to actually believe it. As [Jennifer] Weiner's experience makes clear, part of the difficult, essential work of unruliness is shaking the status quo so thoroughly, so persistently, so loudly that everyone--even the very women behind that agitation, many of whom have internalized the understandings they fight so tirelessly against--can see their value within it.

The Supergirls: Feminism, Fantasy, and the History of Comic Book Heroines (Revised and Updated) by Mike Madrid traces the history of female superheroes from the earliest days of comics to the present. The social history is fairly shallow, but if you're looking for an overview of the topic and a host of characters to research in more depth, you could do worse. Caveat: it's full of observations such as Thorn was as tough as they came, but dressed in a green leather halter-top and micro miniskirt with thigh high boots, she looked more like the entertainer at a bachelor party than the terror of the underworld.

I'd been reading Black and Brown Planets: The Politics of Race in Science Fiction, edited by Isiah Lavender, off and on since maybe January. I'd originally picked it up for the essay about Octavia Butler's short story "The Evening and the Morning and the Night," but the essay I found most rewarding was "Questing for an Indigenous Future: Leslie Marmon Silko's Ceremony as Indigenous Science Fiction" by Patrick B. Sharp, as it described and connected some historical events of which I'd been ignorant when I read the novel, and which added quite a bit of depth to my understanding of it.

"Monteiro Lobato's O Presidente Negro (The Black President): Eugenics and the Corporate State in Brazil" by M. Elizabeth Ginway, "Mestizaje and Heterotopia in Ernest Hogan's High Aztech" by Lysa M. Rivera, and "Virtual Reality at the Border of Migration, Race, and Labor" by Matthew Goodwin all brought me new insights and new information. High Aztech was a DNF for me back when it was new, so I'm glad I got to read about it from another perspective.

I'm about midway through the Rosa Parks bio, and hope to finish it before I leave on vacation.

News from New South Wales

Aug. 16th, 2017 08:48 am
the_comfortable_courtesan: image of a fan c. 1810 (Default)
[personal profile] the_comfortable_courtesan

Dearest Lucy

It was the most delightful of pleasures to receive your letter and to hear that you had been safely delivered of a fine baby boy, that I daresay will be walking and talking by the time you receive this. What a very fine man Mr Lowndes sounds to be, I am most greatly sorry I never met him. It is immensely reassuring to me to think that you have the companionship of such an excellent lady with such wisdom in matters of maternity as Mrs Ferraby. I only hope that you do not go about to overdo, betwixt motherhood, your responsibilities towards your pupils, and your writing for Mr Lowndes’ paper.

But, indeed, I am not one to preach upon the matter, for I am quite constantly kept busy here: not only do I begin the Thornes’ dear children on the rudiments, but I continue to find a great desire for education among the convicts of our community, and a wish to have letters written by those that do not yet feel confident in writing them themselves, although there are now some few that have come on to be able to instruct their fellows. I also assist the Thornes with their observations.

And besides that, Abby Mrs Thorne and I find ourselves assisting Mr Carter in matters of nursing the sick. I do not recollect whether I wrote to you before about Mr Carter? – he came to this land in the capacity of surgeon to the scientific expedition, but has fallen so in love with the country that he has determined to stay, to collaborate with the Thornes in their scientific enterprizes, and also to run a dispensary for our people. But I daresay even I had not mentioned this to you, you would have heard somewhat of the matter from Lady Bexbury, for we have applied to her for the provision of surgical instruments, drugs, &C, that are very hard to come by here. There is not a deal of injury and disease, for we practice sound measures of hygiene, but there will always be some accidents and ailments.

Mr Carter is a most excellent man, a most adept surgeon – oh, Lucy, I try to write of him in a sober fashion, but I must tell you, that we find ourselves in a most happy condition of mutual admiration, and purpose to marry very shortly. He is the dearest of fellows, and it is no wonder that he is so greatly esteemed by Mr and Mrs Thorne. Sure I have found myself, to my astonishment and sometimes embarrassment, courted by several gentlemen in this place, from government officers to free settlers, some of whom grow exceeding wealthy on the backs of sheep: but I have found none that I could like as much as Mr Carter.

He is the finest of men, has a most humane spirit – there is very bad treatment goes on of the aboriginal peoples of the land, that he has a great admiration for, saying that when he was with the scientific expedition all were most prepossessed with their abilities in tracking and hunting and finding sustenance in what appeared a barren wilderness, where the products of civilization would have wandered in circles, or sat down and waited for death. He is writing up a memorandum on the subject, and wondered if, did we send it to you when completed, Mr Lowndes might publish it?

Indeed those years with the Duggetts seem like some nightmare from which I have now awakened. I am sure you would laugh and teaze me unmercifully did I tell you how wonderful I find the Thornes; they are quite the finest companions one could have.

But I mind that there was a thing I meant to ask you, about whether there was any in your circles that might pursue the matter. There has lately come about these parts two gentlemen – I say gentlemen because although they show the effect of hardships and are burnt very brown by the sun, they are clearly well-bred educated fellows does one speak to them – Mr Perry and Mr Derringe, that have some intention to set up a school for boys, for there is a considerable desire among the settlers &C to have their sons educated as gentlemen. While they go about to raise interest for this enterprize, they undertake some private tutoring. And one day came to us Mr Perry, half-carrying Mr Derringe that had some fever or other about him, seeking Mr Carter’s aid in this extremity.

We have a few beds attached to the dispensary, and he was laid in one of them, and examined by Mr Carter, who determined that ‘twas some fever very like unto the mala aria: most fortunate he keeps some fever bark about the dispensary, so quite immediate went about preparing a tincture. Meanwhile, he desired me to sponge the fellow to cool his fever.

So I went about this, and Mr Carter managed to convey him some of the tincture, and he seemed a little better, but then Mr Carter was called away, and said to me, dear Miss Netherne, would you greatly mind sitting by Mr Derringe and continuing to sponge him and keep him quiet, giving him a little of the tincture every few hours? Why, said I, I was about to ask was there anything I might do, so he left me with careful instructions.

I sat by Mr Derringe for some hours, and it seemed to me that he was troubled in his mind, and it did not seem entire delirium, and in due course he disclosed to me very halting and in between shivering fits, that he had on his conscience that he had allowed a young lady to whom he was affianced to suppose that he was dead of a fever in the South Seas, and it would have been a better and more honourable course to communicate to her that he had found that he was such a fellow as would not make her a good husband and thus set her at liberty with no obligation to mourn. She was, he said, a Miss Fenster, her father was the vicar of Upper Stobbing.

So to reassure him I said that the Thornes and I had numerous connexions in England that might be able to go about to find the present condition of the lady, but was it not like that she had by now married another? Very like, he said, she was a quite excellent young woman. So, dear Lucy, I write to you to ask are there any in your circles might go about with discretion to discover the present whereabouts of this lady, for it is clear that the business continues to prey upon Mr Derringe’s mind even though he has recovered from his fever, and Mr Carter fears 'twill bring about some relapse.

Oh, my dear Lucy, the only spot upon my happiness is that you may not be present at my wedding, that Mr Thorne will perform, and that I cannot see you and little Andrew and your excellent husband. Please convey my very greatest respects to Mr and Mrs Ferraby and to Lady Bexbury, that great patroness of our enterprize here: oh what a foolish misguided narrow-minded creature I was to so misjudge her fine qualities.

With every affection, your loving sister, Ellie

Trouble

Aug. 16th, 2017 01:49 am
frith: Light pink cartoon pony with dark pink mane (FIM Pinkie sly)
[personal profile] frith
TroubleShoes [99]

Not particularly villainous but certainly misunderstood, I drew Troubleshoes leaning over a fence. I used two very similar reference images, I aim to get it right more than I aim to be creative.

in a house like this

Aug. 15th, 2017 09:05 pm
thistleingrey: (Default)
[personal profile] thistleingrey
*dashes in to c&p*
Ann Shayne, Bowling Avenue: A Novel (2012): extended reflection by single thirty-something protagonist upon recently deceased married, separated, and possibly adulterous older sister in Tennessee, with random anomie. So boring. The tickle of a romance arc goes exactly as expected, as does the community re-engagement of the protag.

Let's try that again. Shayne is half of the knit-blog duo behind Mason and Dixon (the other half, Kay Gardiner, lives in New York City), and their blog is a fine blog, yay. At some point I found Bowling Ave used for a dollar, a discard from King County's library system; when I visited King County for business, I took it along. And then---I assume that Shayne herself would have had little argument---I knitted during the plane-ride home instead of reading further.

Meanwhile, my airplane seat mate was reading (text-only, on her phone) a novel featuring the Voynich MS and Ashmole 782 which stars an investigator named Diana. Ah, the internet provides---part of a trilogy by Deborah Harkness. Diana is a witch, and some guy is a 1500yo vampire. Since they're het and Destined for reasons I didn't bother to look up, I guess it's better that the boy be the vampire, though only because that one character and that other character are relatively recent, whereas there are hundreds, probably thousands of years of evil lamia stories....

Anyone want a novel set in a sanitized version of pre-current-crush Nashville? (Between 2012 and a year or two ago, a bunch of artistic folk decided to move there or set up shop there. Now it's home to Fringe Association, Elizabeth Suzann, and so on and so forth.) I'll ship it for the cost of US postage. I doubt you'd want overseas postage, since as an ex-library copy it has a weighty plastic cover.

so blue

Aug. 15th, 2017 11:16 am
kore: (Beth Gibbons - music)
[personal profile] kore


Low with Trampled by Turtles - So Blue (Live from The Current Sessions at the Fitz)

March Tomorrow Night

Aug. 15th, 2017 08:55 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
There's a "Philly is Charlottesville" march in Philadelphia tomorrow night, starting at Rodeph Shalom and ending up at Arch Street Methodist. I am summoning energy to go and be counted. Many events (Tuesdays with Toomey, etc.) have been during work hours, so I haven't been able to attend. This one, I can do.

I might not do a sign. All I can think to paint on one is Fuck Off, Fascists or perhaps Die Nazis Die, which while expressive of my sentiments, are probably not what the organizers are hoping for with this endeavor. High road, high road, high road....

Bruce Campbell is going to be at Barnes and Noble tomorrow night, too, but I am sure he would approve of me missing his visit to punch some Nazis march peacefully on behalf of tolerance.

Gym tonight. That will be a good thing.

Last night I ate a delicious cupcake [personal profile] drinkingcocoa brought me from Georgetown, and cuddled Ms. 9 until she could be cuddled no more and had to climb all over the living room. Ms. 13 and I measured our respective heights. She still has a small fraction to go before she's as tall as me.

Day In The Sun

Aug. 15th, 2017 04:47 am
frith: Yellow cartoon pony with pink mane, blue eyes (FIM Fluttershy head)
[personal profile] frith
Sun_Bathing [118]

I built on some rolling and sunbathing equines I've photographed, but I had to hunt down several images for reference, my best bets came from the 'baked bads' and the 'bunny stampede' scenes. Thank Calpain there's an extension, I had to grab a few winks and get up at 2:30 in the AM to finish this. Looks OK now, I'll probably hate it later.

tiskets and taskets

Aug. 14th, 2017 05:49 pm
jazzfish: a whole bunch of the aliens from Toy Story (Aliens)
[personal profile] jazzfish
The guy at MEC (Canadian for "REI") suggested a specific brand of bike basket (Wald), one that bolted onto the front fork in addition to hanging from the handlebars, so it had more support and didn't interfere with the cables.

I ordered one from Amazon last week and it arrived today.

I rode home awkwardly clutching the box with one hand because I had nowhere on the bike to carry it, which seems ironic.

Looks like it'll require specialised tools to attach, though, since my front wheel is 'quick release.' Also since I have basically no tools at this point in time. Guess I'm taking it into MEC on Friday. Maybe they can fix the shifter indicator that they broke a couple of weeks ago when it was in for a tuneup.

I /like/ having a bike. Very curious to see if I continue to like it when it gets cold and/or wet.

bright the hawk's flight

Aug. 14th, 2017 01:10 pm
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
[personal profile] jazzfish
Tattoo photo (warning: fb), taken on Friday shortly after the autostick-saran-wrap came off. The background isn't finished and the whole wants another going-over, but it's there.

I'm reasonably happy with it. I'd been thinking of the background as much more line-art sketched-in, but I like the detail work. And I'm exceptionally pleased with how the hawk came out.

It doesn't yet feel like a part of me. Probably gonna take awhile for that to settle in.

Weekend Weariness

Aug. 14th, 2017 09:53 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
I did squats, bench press, and row with barbell on Friday night, followed by intervals on the treadmill. The next day I was sore, but still restless, so after I did laundry, I went out shopping, with several things on my mental list. I had dinner with a friend, and on my walk home could really feel all the walking/post-workout soreness in my calves in particular.

Sunday, I did more laundry, dug out my big suitcase that I hadn't used in ages, and did most of my vacation packing. It is amazing how much one can fit into a big suitcase; normally I'm very, very disciplined about packing, and use those bags that suck the air out of piles of clothing, but that wasn't necessary; this trip will be by car rather than airplane. I'm not sure if we'll be able to do laundry that week, and I'd rather bring extra clothes and have space to pack dirty clothes loosely. Plus, there's room for print books! I put some comics in already.

I spent almost the entire weekend offline to spare myself from rage and sorrow as much as possible, which worked to some degree. I was depressed and tired, but found lots of distractions from the news.

My Little Rhino

Aug. 14th, 2017 04:09 am
frith: Violet unicorn cartoon pony grinning like Cheshire Cat (FIM Twilight crazy)
[personal profile] frith
MyLittleRhino [113]

My Little Rhino. Well. Rhinos are already pretty chunky... so I drew two rhinos, slapped on some cartoon eyes and some eyelashes. The hair pretty much only grows on the ear margins and the tip of the tail so I built on that. Hmmm, no cutie marks. Oh well, would you look at the time? 4 AM.

summer salad

Aug. 13th, 2017 08:44 pm
kore: (Default)
[personal profile] kore
Was feeling miserable and snarly and tired so made the It Takes a Village to Make a Salad supper again, and it was so low-stress and pretty damn yummy. White beans, salmon, a little cottage cheese for creaminess, chilled peas, diced green bell pepper, sliced cucumbers, sliced chilled hard-boiled eggs, garnished with Parmesan, pesto, mustard, salt, pepper. END OF HEAT WAVE/SMOKE HURRAH

Phone pic in crappy light )

Hippo, Birdie, Two Ewes

Aug. 13th, 2017 09:00 am
onyxlynx: Festive pennants in blue & purple with word "Birthday" centered. (Birthday)
[personal profile] onyxlynx
 to [personal profile] n6tqs  and [personal profile] daydream !  Happy day!

Parody Ponies

Aug. 12th, 2017 11:58 pm
frith: Spirit as a My Little Pony (MLP Spirit)
[personal profile] frith
Grady_Twins [89]

I considered creating a Planet of the Tapirs. Too complicated. I tried to spin an Equestria flying Squirrel into a Rocky the flying Squirrel (voiced by June foray who died a couple of weeks ago). Didn't work. So, my fall back plan, plan C, was to find a in-show parody and draw that. Thus, the Grady Twins from The Shining and the Season Six episode, Where The Apple Lies. Not easy drawing identical twins.

Hippo, Birdie, Two Ewes

Aug. 12th, 2017 11:38 am
onyxlynx: Festive pennants in blue & purple with word "Birthday" centered. (Birthday)
[personal profile] onyxlynx
 to [personal profile] cynthia1960 !  A day of delight!

Party Of One

Aug. 11th, 2017 11:58 pm
frith: Light pink cartoon pony with dark pink mane (FIM Pinkie excited)
[personal profile] frith
PartyOfOne [71]

I circumvented the multi-pony complexities that would have kept me up until the wee hours by making it a party of one. I chose this frame for the unusual expression and body. I see now that Pinkie has become flat, losing the overlap where her legs bend and that her haunch appears as flat as a paddle. I tried to defeat the size, position and articulation gremlins by sketching everything fast, before I lost track of how big or how small such and such part should be. The gremlins won, again. My body was too long. I shrank it. It's still too long. Or worse, my legs are too straight and that accounts for the gap. She's leaning slightly forward and I've lost that. ...May have fixed that and the length... rats, leg is too fat. Curse, erase, erase, erase.

Helsinki 2017

Aug. 11th, 2017 04:00 pm
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
The results of the Hugo Awards cheered me up some! I am so proud of friends who got a rocket statue and friends who didn't get a rocket statue. Go you!!!

Meta

Aug. 11th, 2017 10:21 am
onyxlynx: Egret standing on drainage pipe at the lake. (No Egrets)
[personal profile] onyxlynx
 This is why I have the McSweeney's feed.

Birthday greetings and felicitations

Aug. 11th, 2017 10:15 am
onyxlynx: Festive pennants in blue & purple with word "Birthday" centered. (Birthday)
[personal profile] onyxlynx
 to [personal profile] pantryslut !  Marvelous day!

There should be more to come

Aug. 11th, 2017 10:11 am
the_comfortable_courtesan: image of a fan c. 1810 (Default)
[personal profile] the_comfortable_courtesan

Yr humble amanuensis is most entire grateful for the comments on the recently concluded novella.

There are still a few snippets in hand and - possibly - one or two longer pieces.

Watch this space.

somebody should write that

Aug. 10th, 2017 11:24 pm
boxofdelights: (Default)
[personal profile] boxofdelights
My SF book group today came up with three ideas for things that we agreed we would read the heck out of (and our ratings for The Fifth Season were 8-10 out of 10, so clearly we collectively have very good taste):

1. Donna mentioned Soldier of the Mist and I said I longed to read a fanfic from the point of view of the AI in Person of Interest, in the period when she is figuring out how to circumvent the protocol that wipes her memory every day.

2. I mentioned Station Eleven and Jacqie said she had an aversion to post-apocalyptic traveling theater troupes doing Shakespeare, so we talked about what we'd like to see a post-apocalyptic traveling theater troupe do: they have an orchestra, why not Gilbert and Sullivan? But the most approval went to the suggestion of post-apocalyptic Rocky Horror Picture Show. There was some discussion of how the audience participation could work when you would not throw any rice or toilet paper you happened to have.

3. Someone said they were reading a book about Helen of Sparta, that is, Helen of Troy before she ran away with Paris. Stephen said he thought it was going to be a book about Helen of Troy as a Spartan warrior. Stephen says that Spartans let women train like warriors.

Day 13

Aug. 10th, 2017 10:24 pm
frith: Violet unicorn cartoon pony with a blue mane (FIM Twilight despair)
[personal profile] frith
Sombra [70]

Sombra's chasing that dream and reaching for the Crystal Heart.

Not too crazy about this prompt. Not only is it like a variation on yesterday's adventure/journey prompt, it feels more like a writer's block prompt than a learn to draw prompt. I should be getting prompts that explore posture, expression, angle, light, shading and perspective, not story ideas. I wasn't keen to start a new page for this sketch so I found a corner on a previous page and used that instead. Maybe I should do a Hello Kitty series with a static pony redrawn dressed up to match each prompt. 8^p

Sweating

Aug. 10th, 2017 08:58 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
I am frustrated with my stress eating and my blood sugar and my weight gain this year, and also feeling depressed and helpless about it. And worrying about both politics and money, when usually it's only money and wanting to live alone but not having the money for it, that's a constant background whine.

(I am not in debt, which I know is great. This is the background Fear of Falling Into Poverty that is pretty much a constant even though I have a decent job and make more than most of my family members; it emerges more under stress. It also relates to worrying about my family being able to take care of themselves.) She says, in parentheses!

ETA: Hufflepuff, did you notice?

Time is an issue. I need to think about how to manage it better when I spend 40 hours a week at work, and about six hours at the gym. I am usually too tired to cook, or too busy, even though I know how and enjoy it. Managing time might help me to eat better and exercise better. I also feel like I could be writing, and making extra money doing that, but really don't have the spare energy/mental space for it at the moment.

I decided to switch up my workouts again, to see if that will help with everything. Also, workouts are Accomplishments. Monday, I did pushups, with my hands in normal position and also closer in, which is harder for me. I attempted standing on a box with one leg to lower and lift the free leg. I was terrible at that, especially on the left side, but could definitely feel the ache the following day! Then I did some familiar stuff, like leg and butt lifts and tricep exercises, and bounced a ten-pound medicine ball for variety. I sweated a lot.

Last night, I was still sore, mostly in my shoulders, so I tried fifteen minutes on a Spinning bike, alternating standing with sitting. The sitting is really uncomfortable because of the narrow seat! Then I did fifteen minutes on a recumbent bike, not something I really do much. I sweated a lot doing those things, too.

Not sure about Friday, but maybe one of those horrific stair machines or something? And looking up some other bodyweight exercises.

I'll be on vacation from the 19th to the 25th or 26th...not sure how much exercising will happen that week. But hopefully, it will be good for me mentally.
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[personal profile] the_comfortable_courtesan

Geoffrey’s confusion over the owner of the library brings to Sandy’s mind that there are still several trunks of his stored somewhere about the house, containing his own books and other matters, and does he intend staying here, he might unpack them and see is there some place he might keep them more convenient.

He mentions this to Clorinda. O, indeed, she cries, I daresay one might put up more shelves in the library, mayhap a few about your chamber – I wonder might we come about to make a study for you –

No, no, I am quite contented to be about philosophizing in the library –

Do I not disturb you am I in and out?

Not in the least, dearest Clorinda. And, my dear, do I continue to be part of this household, you have been treating me entirely as a guest in Liberty Hall, but I should wish to pay my way -

Clorinda looks as if she might object, and then says, with a lopsided smile, that sure he would not wish to be a kept man and 'twould be somewhat to reassure the dear children that he does not take advantage of a poor lonesome creature –

Exactly. I do not wish to acquire the reputation of a parasite.

O, poo. But let us go summon Hector about this matter of shelves: I doubt not he will say that do we have carpenters in there are other matters that would require their attention.

This is indeed so. Hector also shows some disposition towards bringing down the trunks from the attic in which they are stored for Sandy’s examination, but is finally prevailed upon to concede that this may take place in the attic, and only such matters as turn out to be required need be brought down.

So the next morn, he ascends to the attic and looks at the boxes that hold his past life, and tells himself that he must be philosophical about the business, for it is entirely foolish to leave all these things stowed away.

And is almost undone at the outset, flinging open a lid and finding, resting on top of everything, his worn volume of Burns’ poems. That had been with him so long and to so many places, and from which he had read at so many gatherings.

He picks it up as if it might bite. Closes his eyes and lets it fall open (entire superstition) and then opens his eyes to read

Had we never lov'd sae kindly,
Had we never lov'd sae blindly,
Never met or never parted,
We had ne'er been broken-hearted.

Tears spring to his eyes, as he is overwhelmed by the memories of how indeed he and Gervase had loved so kindly, had enjoyed happiness for so many years in a world so very hostile to men like them. And he would not have given that up in spite of the grief he feels now. Gervase at his fencing practice. Gervase frowning thoughtfully at his mirrored reflection and adjusting his cravat. Gervase teaching him to dance. Gervase clinging to him in the aftermath of nightmare. Gervase’s face when he returned from Naples. Gervase laughing at some sally of Clorinda’s. Gervase practising a speech so that he might give it in the Lords without stammering. Gervase in that masquerade costume as a Jacobite out of Scott.

He lets the memories flood over him.

Some hours later, though he has not quite finished the task, for each box opened releases further clouds of memories, the antithesis of the evils that emerged from Pandora’s box, he goes downstairs to the parlour, clutching the volume of Burns in his hand.

Clorinda looks up. You have cobwebs in your hair, o bello scozzese. She stands up and comes over and reaches up to brush them away.

Listen! he says, and begins to read the lines to her, realising as he does so that his voice is softening out of the English intonation it has acquired over the years –

- and Clorinda bursts into heaving sobs quite unlike the affecting tearfulness she will sometimes manifest, and leaning on his chest, gasps out, O, Sandy, I miss them so much.

He puts his arms around her, reminded of the time she disclosed in similar fashion that she was with child. Dear Clorinda, he says.

At length her sobs diminish and she leans away from him, fumbling for her handkerchief, blowing her nose, and making apologies, saying, La, you are not obliged to endeavour go soothe a lady that succumbs to a fit of hysterics.

He hugs her to him again and says, Perchance it might ease your mind to talk sometimes of happy times with one that knows somewhat of the inwardness?

She gives a shaky laugh and says, Fie, Mr MacDonald, I confide you would be mightily shocked did I so.

Must be of considerable philosophical and scientific interest, he says.

They both fall into a fit of somewhat hysterical giggling.

Clorinda sits down and dabs at her eyes and says, does she look calm enough that the household will not get into a fret does any observe her? For she confides that they could both do with some good strong coffee.

When she has tidied herself a little she rings the bell to request coffee.

As they sit drinking it, he looks across at his friend and says, Dearest Clorinda, I do love nothing in the world so well as you. Is not that strange? Sure I do not know how I would have contrived without you. You have always been so kind to one that I fear can be a very tiresome fellow.

La, my dear, you have ever shown more than civil to a silly creature of no education, spoke to me as if I was a rational being, been the kindest of friends. Sure we have been through a deal of difficulties together: though none, she adds thoughtfully, as trying as this present one.

They both sigh and gaze mournfully into their cups. And then look up again and smile at one another.

The door opens and Josh comes in, dishevelled and weary-eyed. I have, he says, been attending upon the accouchement of Lady Raxdell’s wanton doggie. Do we know any that would like a puppy of extreme dubious ancestry?

Why, says, Clorinda, let us go think over those of our acquaintance that have children that would greatly desire a puppy, and would not go be nice over matters of breeding -

The two men look at her fondly and smile.

- I suppose one cannot yet tell are they like to be fine ratters, sure Sam will always be glad of ratters for the stables – but I could not offer take one myself, Motley and Fribble would object most vehement –

Through the half-open door Prue can be heard singing hymns about her work - I woke: the dungeon flamed with light.

And Sandy thinks that his own dungeon of loss does not flame yet with light: but there is the small steady candle of Clorinda’s love and concern driving away the worst of the shadows.

Tripping Along

Aug. 10th, 2017 03:18 am
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[personal profile] frith
TrippinTrixie [115]

The training continues. It was a trip trying to get those circles within circles to line up and keep everything the right size and aligned. Time for me to trip on back to bed.

reading wednesday

Aug. 9th, 2017 10:25 pm
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[personal profile] boxofdelights
• What are you reading?

The Fifth Season, by N.K. Jemisin, for SF book group. I had been putting this one off, because I heard it began with the murder of a very young child, in a world that is so terrible that this seems like reasonable behavior. The book is grim, but gripping.

• What did you recently finish reading?

Nothing! I'm in the middle of six different things. I didn't finish Out Stealing Horses because a moose crashed through the fence of the woman who was hosting book group in July, and now her steers are roaming free on thousands of acres of forest, with the rains washing away their traces. She'll reschedule in August and I'll read it then. There is a moose at my husband's house, too:moose )
I have to keep a careful eye on the dogs when we visit.

I did watch the first season of American Gods, which was beautiful. I read American Gods too long ago to judge how good an adaptation this is, but it is a very good TV show.

• What do you think you’ll read next?

My Favorite Thing is Monsters, by Emil Ferris, because my library hold just came through.

charcoal and pine

Aug. 9th, 2017 10:09 pm
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[personal profile] thistleingrey
Helie Lee, Still Life with Rice (1997): fictional memoir---that is, after a preface of her own (troped) self-discovery, Lee writes what she knows and has filled in of her grandmother's life in the first person. This is formally a novel. Baek Hongyong, b. 1912, grew up near P'yongyang in a post-yangban household with two younger sisters. The narrative carries us through their respective marriages, the removal of her immediate household to Manchuria towards the end of the peninsular occupation, their return to the peninsula after WWII's end, their sudden deprivation by the nascent communist government north of the 38th parallel, and Baek's eldest daughter's removal to the US with small Helie (late 1960s).
Read more... )

No, I've absolutely no clue why I read this and The Plum Tree simultaneously. Happenstance re: when I heard of each, but layering them into a hairshirt-like blanket may've been a bit much. The next readings are lighter.
jazzfish: artist painting a bird, looking at an egg for reference (Clairvoyance)
[personal profile] jazzfish
Erin's staying with me for the week, which is lovely. She got in on Friday afternoon, and we've spent the extended-weekend snuggling and cooking and talking and running errands. It's been well over a decade since I've had a partner come to stay with me for longer than an afternoon, excepting Emily for the couple of years we were in DC and not living together. (And this past Xmas, I guess, though that was its own kettle of awkwardfish.) It's worked out rather well.

We went and got most of the Cargo furniture on Saturday, and it fits into the space pretty well though not quite as easily as I'd hoped. Gonna take a bit more rearranging to get it the way I want. Also, I'd like to get some art hung up sooner than later, in the hope that that'll help it feel more ... more real, more mine, something. I'm really good at getting my space about 80% of the way there, and then just not bothering with that last 20%.

Trips to the old condo are now most definitely Difficult, emotionally. Emily's solidly settled in and she's made the space her own. It's good to see her doing well. It's also rough to surround myself with... with how effectively I've been removed from something that used to be shared. There are still a couple more things that I need to do there: sorting artwork, for one. Maybe if I know / admit in advance that it's gonna be rough it'll be easier. Maybe.



I said "extended weekend" and I meant it. I took yesterday off work to get my second tattoo.

I've gone into extended detail about my first. This one took much less dithering and deliberating. A couple of weeks ago I went in and spoke with Rachel Lige, an artist that Erin recommended, and tried to describe the idea I'd had in my head. She made approving noises and asked a few questions and used words like "negative space" that I hadn't had the vocabulary to put into my description and quickly sketched something that looked like it might conceivably approximate what I was thinking of. I put down a deposit and made a tentative appointment for, well, yesterday, and emailed her some reference material that afternoon (a few silhouettes, plus the Le Guin and the Richard Siken poems), and tried to think no more about it.

Until last week when she sent me a preliminary design, and it was just about perfect. As an added bonus, seeing it, rather than trying to visualise, gave me the ability to describe it. "On my left pec, a silhouette of a hawk in flight, dark purple and filled with stars, over a dark grey sketched-in landscape." I wrote back to her with a couple of minor suggestions and confirmed Tuesday.

The whole experience was markedly more pleasant than the previous one. Some of that's having Erin there for much of the time (she ducked out for an hour or so to run a few errands), some of it's feeling more comfortable with Rachel than with Gilda, some of it's just having been here before and knowing a bit better what to expect. It took, mm, somewhere between three and four hours. Much of it was painful but not so bad: bits directly over ribs or sternum pinched unpleasantly, and the area down towards my armpit was just plain more sensitive. Then the last half-hour to forty-five minutes, in a combination of 'going over parts that have already been poked raw two or three times' and 'body is just Done', were sheer unpleasant agony. So we got most of it done, and I'll be back in a month or so for touchup and to finish some of the outside bits.

It looks lovely, though right now it's more red than I'd like. One expects that that will improve as it heals. The landscape's more detailed than I'd expected, and maybe darker, but I'm happy with it. I'm particularly pleased with how the stars in the hawk came out.

I was distinctly lightheaded when I sat up: not just a standard low-blood-pressure thing, but a very specific floatiness and absence of conscious thought. It's neat. I'm glad Erin was there: she fed me half a litre of chocolate milk and guided me to the Ethiopian place on the Drive where we ate raw cow and spicy lentils, and then took me home and generally kept track of me. So that was lovely, too.

I've already got vague ideas for next/additional pieces. The first tattoo I ever considered, back when I was still in engineering, was an electrical ground symbol on my Achilles tendon, and I still (or maybe again?) think that's relevant. I've recently kicked around the idea of a tiny orange, though that might be a passing fancy. And I've a mental image of a larger, brighter, piece on my right shoulder and upper arm. No sense of what it is, just that it... ought to be there, somehow.

In the meantime, I can focus on healing up from this one.
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[personal profile] oracne
I forgot to include my fanfiction reading last week, so I'll do two weeks worth of recs in one post.

Better Than To Bend by silentwalrus is a WWII-era threesome (Peggy Carter, Bucky Barnes, Steve Rogers) with splendid dialogue and sex scenes I read all the way through and enjoyed. (I've written too much erotica, I think; I get bored easily.)

Emergency Contact by Feldman has Avengers characters turned back into teenagers, but I swear it is good even if you hate that trope. One of the "kids" is Nick Fury, which I loved, but I wanted there to be more of him.

Twelve Birds of Christmas by adi_rotynd features Sam Wilson and a lot of birds and bird crap and also Odin. It is delightfully weird. Incidental threesome (Sam/Steve/Bucky).

Franklin P. Nelson: Super-Attorney by enthusiasmgirl is, well, what it says on the tin. Foggy ends up as the attorney of record for various superheroes, since Matt keeps having to take sick days. Also, Jennifer Walters (She-Hulk) went to law school with Foggy and Matt, which is so brilliant I want it all the time. Like, a whole series of them together.

Oasis by sholio is a perfect story when you are feeling stressed; Pepper asks Bucky to create a rooftop garden for Stark Tower. I could read a whole series of this, too.

we'll all arrive in heaven alive by napricot is a post-WWI Wonder Woman story in which Diana decides to bring Antiope and Steve Trevor out of the underworld. It has loads of cool Greek underworld details. Hades and Persephone for the win! Let me know if you need spoilers.
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[personal profile] the_comfortable_courtesan

Somehow, he is not sure how, he cannot feel that he has made some definite decision in the matter, it seems easier to do than not to, Sandy finds himself dining somewhat more frequently than once a week with Geoffrey Merrett. Occasionally he thinks that there is somewhat ironic about this arrangement: for is that not what he at first supposed there was with Gervase? A matter of convenience for two fellows of like desires to gratify them most discreet. It is only now that he apprehends what a difference there was.

He is sitting having a peaceful quiet evening with Clorinda, both of them reading, and he looks up and says, somewhat to his own surprize, that he cannot fathom how that trick of substituting one person for another in bed could work –

Well, my dear, I think we may suppose that Angelo had not had carnal knowledge of Mariana, nor Bertram of Helena, and that both encounters took place in the dark. And perchance there was a matter of sprinkling with some perfume – she gives a small private smile – that was that of one lady rather than another. But sure one would suppose that Count Almaviva would know his own wife! Indeed, 'tis like the convention that does one put on a domino, even one’s intimates will be deceived.

I am not persuaded, she goes on, that 'tis entire true that all cats are grey at night - for there are other distinctions in the matter, the size, the length of the hair, do they have an ear missing, the sound of the purring – by which one might distinguish one cat from another even in the dark. Should never confuse Motley with Fribble.

He smiles at her.

It begins to dawn upon him that Geoffrey is not taking the matter in the same prudential spirit as himself. Will mention gentlemen that have set up a joint household for the convenience and economy of the thing – says that he dares suppose they may see a deal of one another over the summer even is Society out of Town, for he hears that Sandy is invited to Dambert Chase? And he is sure that he can prevail upon his brother to extend an invitation to Monks Garrowby – sure there are opportunities they may make –

He does not know why this should cast him into such gloom, but it does so. Had been thinking of the invitation to Hampshire, where he might talk classics with Lady Jane, and the latest discoveries in science with Jacob Samuels, and whatever came into Martha Samuels' head. And watch Raoul de Clérault painting, and would all be soothing to his spirits. At Dambert Chase it was the prospect of good talk with Tony Offgrange, walks to the Rectory and fine conversation with the Lucases. Not spaniel devotion –

My dear, says Clorinda one morn as they are at the breakfast table, I should not be perturbed did I see the dour Calvinistical glare, but latterly you look most extreme miserable – not, she goes on, that I should expect you to look lightsome and cheerful, but you do appear out of the common distressed about somewhat. Was you not a freethinker I should suppose you had come to some consideration that you were eternally damned.

Dear sibyl, he says at length, I am in an entire muddle, but you have disentangled mayhap worse muddles of mine in former days. And proceeds to lay the matter before her.

Clorinda begins to laugh quite immoderate, and then forces herself into sobriety. My dear, I do not laugh at you and your predicament, but I daresay I should disclose that some years ago Mr Merrett asked for my hand in marriage –

What!

La, I had shown kind to him, and perchance – 'twas a time when Society was but slowly returning to Town, you and Milord had gone that jaunt to the Highlands, there was some matter to do with the ironworks detained my darlings from their return – I paid him a little more attention than I might otherwise have done. And listened most sympathetic to the account of his very particular difficulties, &C. And it came to him that marrying a lady that knew what's what and had seen life might answer, for these young women on the marriage market are very ignorant and one could not raise the matter before the wedding –

Indeed, Sandy finds himself surprized into laughter. Did he so? he gasps at length.

Clorinda puts on a demure expression. He did so. So, I said that I apprehended that he would claim a certain liberty within those bonds, and sure, was I ever minded to remarry, should desire a similar liberty, would tie up my fortune, and moreover the profession have give it out that I am unlike to see increase but that might be of no moment to him –

To be just, she adds, I do not think he had any particular thought to my pleasing competence; but he then looked at me and I think went consider what 'twould mean to marry a woman with a mind and will of her own that has seen the things I have seen, and that we had had a most agreeable and amusing interlude but that marriage was a very different proposition.

You were not obliged to go about as you did with that fellow Croce in Naples?

Clorinda giggles and says, most fortunately, no. But, she goes on, putting on a serious expression, I think I must go speak to Mr Merrett, about taking advantage of a fellow that still grieves – for indeed, 'tis like unto widows, that may show pliant to suitors not because they are so used to having a man, as idle tongues will have it, but because they are in a daze.

What, I am a readily beguiled widow?

Dearest Sandy, you were together with Milord nigh upon thirty years. 'Twould reflect poorly upon the both of you did you not mourn. But 'tis the worse for you that you may not show it, dress in weeds, eschew society, &C –

You must know somewhat of that.

'Tis true, she says a little tearfully, but I had my good people about me, took care of me. But I will go write Mr Merrett a note desiring him to call upon me. Can be nothing exceptionable in summoning him: I daresay he will suppose I wish put some deserving case in his way. I might also go suggest to him that although his family quite accepts the pretty devotion of the Ladies of Attervale, might be somewhat of a different matter when 'tis gentlemen –

Do you go tell me that Lady Emily and Miss Fenster are of the Sapphic disposition?

La, my dear, had you not guessed?

Indeed I am a fool, dear sibyl, but - sure women are entire a mystery to me.

O, poo, Mr MacDonald, sure you have not been immured in some monastery, you have several good female friends, women cannot be so entire a mystery to you –

Oh, I see what 'tis – I do not think women of them, I think Hannah or Lady Jane or Susannah Wallace.

She smiles at him. Did you not, o, many years ago, write to me of those among your peripatetic philosophical set that talked of women as if they had never met one and as if they were some rare creature of which they had heard report? There are indeed certain aspects of women you have not encountered, but as a sex they are not strangers to you.

I will also concede, he says, that I have at times been out in my judgements of my own sex.

They smile at one another.

Sandy is greatly tempted to be out of the house when Geoffrey Merrett calls, but merely goes seclude himself in the library. Where he finds himself in a considerable curiosity as to what Clorinda is telling him, indeed is unable to settle to anything.

At length, Hector comes in to ask whether he is at home to Mr Merrett?

It would be cowardly, unmanly and a little cruel to shirk this interview.

Comes in Geoffrey most chastened and quite abject apologetic for the very poor ton he has manifested. Alas, the admiration he had so long borne towards Mr MacDonald led him into this unmannerly imposition.

This is so pretty and touching a sight that Sandy pulls Geoffrey into his arms, kisses him fondly and apologises that he himself, alas, is yet unable to love again.

Indeed, cries Geoffrey, how could it be otherwise?

(Sandy wonders, not for the first time, whether Gervase had succumbed to that melting adoration during that time the two of them were so horribly at outs and he had fled to Naples to beg Clorinda to return to her wonted haunts. Fencing lessons – instruction in driving – considerable opportunities. )

But, he continues, perchance, someday - ?

Sandy makes some non-committal reply. Adoration and admiration are all very well, but he cannot envision Geoffrey teazing him out of his gloomy moods, or having Gervase’s way of dealing with a dour Calvinistical glare.

Geoffrey steps back and looks about their surroundings. I see you have your library around you already.

'Tis Lady Bexbury's, he says.

Oh – an inheritance from her late husband?

(It pleases Sandy more than it should to apprehend that Mr Merrett may have shared Clorinda’s bed – in a far more conventional sense than he himself ever has – but has no notion that she is a lady keeps a fine library for use rather than ornament.)

Birthday greetings and felicitations

Aug. 8th, 2017 09:08 am
onyxlynx: Festive pennants in blue & purple with word "Birthday" centered. (Birthday)
[personal profile] onyxlynx
 to [personal profile] chickenfeet !  Enjoy your day!

(no subject)

Aug. 8th, 2017 03:54 am
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[personal profile] kore
I couldn't sleep and the haze from the wildfires feels like it's smoking my head from the inside out so naturellement I wrote some fic.

And the shame was on the other side (3154 words) by actonbell
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Atomic Blonde (2017)
Rating: Mature
Warnings: Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Relationships: Lorraine Broughton/Delphine Lasalle
Characters: Lorraine Broughton, Delphine Lasalle
Additional Tags: Fix-It, Kissing, Past Violence, New York City, way too many literary references, Fake Character Death, Alternate Universe - Canon Divergence, Delphine lives
Summary:

If it's a game she'll play, like the chessmen. If it's a trick she'll be fooled. If it's a trap she'll close her eyes, open her mouth and swallow the bait. Just to keep Delphine standing here. Just to see her.

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[personal profile] the_comfortable_courtesan

Sandy has already made the deduction that although Josh lacks those feelings of aversion towards carnal embraces with his own sex that are so dreadfully common, his inclinations are predominantly towards the fairer one. It is therefore with somewhat of a bitter amusement that he discovers himself feeling some resentment, not on his own behalf but on that of Hannah, when Josh begins to spend a deal of time in the company of the Dowager Duchess of Humpleforth, and he cannot suppose that their discourse is entirely concerned with the fauna of India and the habits of the mongoose.

He mentions the matter to Clorinda. Who smiles and says, sure freedom in the heart’s affections may be claimed by men as a license to be amorous butterflies and commit seductions – one may recall that dreadful fellow Herr Paffenrath, that indeed, one still hears occasional intelligence of and thus can never be presumed dead so his poor wife might be released (Gretchen Paffenrath, he collects, was left very comfortably situated upon the demise of the late Mr Knowles) – but my dear, women may also follow that creed, sure I am no entire unique creature.

And, she goes on, Julia is a childless widow of considerable fortune that was married to a doating but somewhat tedious elderly husband, I do not suppose that mongeese take up all her heart. Can do her no harm to be seen as a patroness of a famed explorer and zoologist.

Do you think so, dearest Clorinda, I will defer to your fabled understanding of the human heart –

- O, poo, Mr MacDonald, you take advantage that I have no fan in hand to smite flatterers –

- provided that you are assured that Hannah will not be upset in the matter. (How easy it is, he realizes, to slip back into their old teazing converse.)

I confide not. 'Tis very pretty in you to be concerned for her.

She is an excellent young woman, he says.

You do not need convince me of her merits! and, by way of an association by pun, is’t not tonight you go dine with that beacon of the Bar, Mr Geoffrey Merrett?

Indeed it is: and, why, dear silly creature, should that make you smile thus?

I cannot imagine what you mean: how is’t that I smile? And why should I not smile do you go dine with a fellow that has ever had the greatest admiration for you?

But, somehow, the quite antient joke about the Honble Geoffrey’s very great, positively worshipful, admiration for him no longer seems as amusing as it used to be.

It is, perhaps, a little to wonder at that so eligible a bachelor as Mr Merrett has not yet married: brother of the Earl of Nuttenford, a most highly-spoke of barrister, exceeding well-looking, a good deal of address…

And not indifferent to the charms of womanhood, does gossip not lie –

But indeed, 'tis a topic Mr Merrett has no hesitation in raising himself when making entire unnecessary apologies for his bachelor establishment: indeed, marriage may be an excellent fine thing, but he takes the thought that one marries, and there are a deal of social obligations, and then one has to keep up a certain style of living, and the next thing one knows is that one is taking on cases because they will be well-remunerated, and not because of the justice of the thing –

(For indeed, Mr Merrett already has a reputation for taking on cases that will not be remunerative, but will defend the defenceless; it is entirely admirable in him.)

- and furthermore, he has been brought to an apprehension of the very inequitable nature of marriage, he cannot suppose that MacDonald has not read the very fine writings of the youngest Miss Ferraby and Miss Roberts upon the subject, gives men a deal of quite tyrannical power; but does one consider a free union, may have quite the most adverse effects for the woman and any offspring unless one goes live among Owenites or such –

The port – it is really most excellent port – has been back and forth several times. There are also excellent cigars.

- and then – the eloquence falters for a little while – there are also matters of the exclusiveness that goes with that institution, that may trouble one.

Oh? says Sandy, raising his eyebrows.

Not that I incline to the vulgar way that my father went on –

Why, responds Sandy, he was at least discreet in his pleasures, could have been a deal worse.

’Tis true, but one cannot like the way he went about the business. And surely 'tis possible to have affection for more than one –

(Sandy cannot see how this follows, but he listens on.)

And perchance there might be one that, in the present state of society, one may not offer those open manifestations of feeling approved by convention –

Because, suggests Sandy, those feelings are looked on with great severity by the law?

I see you apprehend me, says the Honble Geoffrey, pouring himself more port and pushing the decanter across the table. And yet one sees that although there are very degraded manifestations of such feelings – alas, have I not seen evidence of that in the courtroom? – they may also rise to quite the highest form of human affection.

My dear Merrett, says Sandy in his driest tones, you do not need to convince me. You are of sufficient acuity to have deduced how matters stood 'twixt myself and Lord Raxdell.

Indeed, 'twas an entirely admirable thing. Sure he is a great loss.

Sandy pours himself another glass of port to have somewhat to do, and then takes and lights a cigar. Immense, he says at length.

There must have been some other words between them? How is it – how many times did the port go to and fro? – that the Honble Geoffrey Merrett is kneeling before him and giving considerable proof that this is by no means the first time he has done the like. And Sandy finds parts of him entire relishing the procedure, he cannot claim any reluctant shrinking. 'Twould be the poorest of ton to call a halt to the matter –

And sure 'twould be in the poorest of ton not to provide some reciprocation –

And 'tis morning when he leaves, having – somehow – promised to dine again within the week, and yet feeling a cloud of gloomy despondency settling over him as he walks – 'tis light, the streets these days are a deal safer, he feels that he needs the exercise –

The cloud will not be outrun.

It is with relief that he comes at last to Clorinda’s door.

Hector looks not in the least discomposed by his arrival, and says that Her Ladyship is breakfasting in the parlour, does he care to join her.

He can hear that Clorinda is not alone, but supposes that her companion must be Josh.

But going in, sees that across the table from her, eating a mutton-chop, is Matt Johnson.

Clorinda looks around. Do sit down, Sandy, I confide Hector has gone bustle Euphemia into bringing more food and fresh coffee.

Matt Johnson grins and says, Hector is an even braver fellow than he supposed does he dare bustle Euphemia. A fine formidable woman.

Sandy sits down and says, is there some trouble?

La, says Clorinda, must it ever be some matter of trouble brings Mr Johnson to our door? Was simply passing by and called see how we did.

Matt looks somewhat relieved at this account, and then Euphemia comes in with devilled kidneys and more eggs and a pot of fresh coffee.

As he eats and drinks coffee he finds himself looking from one to the other of them and wondering. Could it really be - ? Clorinda in her wrapper, Matt very much at his ease, and indeed, there has been a certain sympathy betwixt the two of them ever since their first meeting.

In due course Matt takes his leave.

Just passing by? asks Sandy.

Clorinda sighs. I hope, o bello scozzese, you are not going to turn upon me a frown quite worthy of John Knox and chide me for my wanton behaviour –

Sure I should be quite the greatest hypocrite did I so, but –

La, is not rank but the guinea’s stamp, and are not my own origins humble indeed? But, my dear, is’t so?

He sighs. Indeed it is.

frith: Violet unicorn cartoon pony grinning like Cheshire Cat (FIM Twilight crazy)
[personal profile] frith
Grappling [133]

After a ten hour work day I didn't have the spoons to get out my sketchbook even though I knew what I was going to draw for this -- Twilight grappling with her winter saddle. The prompt asked for fighting/grappling. Getting up in time for deadline was a bear. By the time I sat down with a pencil I had only 20 minutes left. That was not enough time, even for a sketchy sketch, I finally got this in 45 minutes late. Maybe I'll rework this for the makeup gallery. Nice horsey anatomy in this model.

The prompts so far have been a cut above those of recent ATG's! They're keeping me guessing as to what is next and I'm not having déjà vu when they appear.

Back to sleep for an hour and a half.

Hippo, Birdie, Two Ewes

Aug. 7th, 2017 03:31 pm
onyxlynx: Festive pennants in blue & purple with word "Birthday" centered. (Birthday)
[personal profile] onyxlynx
to [personal profile] black_pearl! Have a truly tremendous day!  Woooo-hoooooooo!

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