test jpg.jpg

Forum Comments

Consistency: 08/27/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 28, 2022
Does daily writing count as a part of a schedule? What is a schedule if not a reminder to adhere to routine? What is routine to someone with no structure? I don't know. I really don't. Maybe if I think hard enough, I could figure it out, but I haven't yet. And I'm too tired to start now. Tomorrow, maybe. I can't think of anything for inspiration, so I decide the best thing to do is take a break from it all for a minute. Leave, stretch, do something else, clear my head a bit. Find something that inspires me once I feel okay again, and then I'll get back to it. That's my plan. Just leave for a minute, come back rejuvenated, and I'll be all good. If I have my days all planned out specifically, you see, I can gain a sense of balance in my life that I otherwise would never have. If I stick to a routine and never, ever waver -- unless that wavering, of course, is meticulously planned -- then nothing will have time to rot away or fall apart. I'll be functional. I'll be happy. So I do leave, and -- and this happens a lot -- I get sidetracked. Completely forget to get back to it. And when one thing is thrown out of rhythm, so is another, and before you know it everything is so distressing and out of structure and wrong and you know what? Throw the whole damn day away. And then my week is out of balance. And so are all the other weeks after that. Even the smallest things like this, like writing, things I enjoy doing, I don't have the energy or memory for, and nothing I've done to remedy that has ever worked long term. I'm so tired of nothing clicking for me and feeling myself fall into those same patterns that I always have before. But I have it in writing. That's one step. I have the routine written down. And sometimes, on good days, I remember to do the little things like eat healthy and breathe and take time for my writing. Granted, today was not one of those days, but sometimes I do it! And then I feel like I really can! I'm functional! I'm happy! I'm- happy? *Am* I happy? Would I ever know if I was? Well, I definitely know that I'm tired. Productive or not, it's been a long day. I have a lot that I still need to do and I should have definitely finished sooner, but I don't have any more time today. And I'm definitely too tired to start now. Tomorrow, maybe.
1
0
Consistency: 08/26/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 27, 2022
This had to have been here for centuries, at least. Or at least *a* century. Whatever the specific age may have been, one look at the ruins told you all you needed to know about how *old* this place is. Scattered, crumbled brick is strewn about on the ground, and only the smallest structures remain. Pillars are toppled over halfway and knocked from their foundations entirely. The material itself is very worn as well, obviously old, but still sturdy. Somehow, after all these years, some remnants of life before the Calamity still remained. Still ... remained. There used to be so much more. You find yourself reeling at the fact that it wasn't always like this. This used to be a city. People *lived* here. And before they were forced into hiding for safety or wiped out altogether, surely, they were happy? At least some of them? Enough to make a difference? Enough to be worth mentioning? As you climb atop one of the old walls, you start to dwell on it. And against what your brain knows will only hold you back, your heartstrings are being pulled by this awareness. You can't imagine having to fight for that long, for all that consistent time, and to have to give it your all every second because of how much depended on it. Even worse, the idea of waiting for that long, trapped, unable to do anything at all. You lucked out. You were unconscious for that century. And yet, you're still so tired. The ledge seemed like a nice place to rest, at least for a second, which is why you got up here in the first place. You like climbing things. You don't ... entirely know why. It's as if the more you look on at your surroundings, the more you notice, and the less you wish you knew, but the less you can ever stop. The fate of everything, *everything,* lies on your shoulders. And it is more draining than you ever thought it'd be.
1
0
Consistency: 08/25/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 26, 2022
Malice lingers. It clings to his shirt, his hands, his throat like an all consuming tar. It's something that he can't get rid of, and believe me, he's tried. No matter what he attempts, he can't get it off, and no matter what he does, it only spreads further. It's a slow process. Gradual. But certain. It burns. It burns almost as much as the sting of defeat that is starting to set in. His heart drops at the very idea, but he knows deep down that there's no escaping it. He can heal up as much as he wants and outrun his demise as long as he can keep putting one foot in front of the other, but time is a slow march, and like other things guaranteed in life, it always catches up to everyone. Yes, it is certain. It is absolute. Link is going to die like this. And if he doesn't, he'll turn into something that'll make him wish he did. He'll fight against it, oh, he will. He's nothing if not persistent. But that isn't to say he'll succeed, because he won't, and it isn't to say that he isn't aware of that either, because he is. Any effort would be fruitless, but if he doesn't even *try,* then what kind of hero does that make him? What kind of person is he? So he swings his sword around at the accursed mass surrounding him, with less of the precision of a skilled swordsman than the thrashing of a panicked man who knows what will happen if he can't keep fighting. Link has to find something. There *has* to be something. His movements are, for what might be the first time, fueled by fear and desperation rather than determination and a level head. It's obvious in the way his hands tremble to hold up the blade and how every few steps is a stumble. It can't end like this. It *won't* end like this. If Ganon wants to stop Link from using this sword to end his corrupt existence, then he will have to pry the blade from his cold, dead hands first. As the malice slowly gains a greater hold on him, Link notices that he's beginning to fumble more. His aim is way off, he can't maintain a sturdy grip, no attempt at a dodge is timed effectively ... It's as if someone is pulling a dark cloth over his own awareness and progressively separating it from the rest of his body, waiting for that one fatal mistake to take advantage of. It doesn't take long for that mistake to come. He doesn't even realize until it's already too late. A scream startles him, and it isn't until a jolt of searing pain through his body causes him to drop his weapon that he realizes that the scream came from him. Pain. *Agonizing* pain, the source of which somewhere in his chest. Link glances down. He very quickly wishes he didn't.
1
0
Consistency: 08/24/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 25, 2022
The dawn breaks out, its golden rays Rushing right through the clouds and air. It's effortless, the start of day, The commencing of what must be there. The sky is painted in soft hues Of blue and pink and violet shades. It's such a perfect, perfect view That only exists once, then fades. The air is cold, which I find odd; It's not on brand for where we are. I think and quite fast am distraught, For how could it have passed this far? The hours, I mean. The hours fly. I write and find too quick that sky Has, for a long time, well and died, Since fast enough, I cannot scribe. The noon, I guess I could call nice, But the heat is unforgiving. Where warmth is virtue, warmth is vice, And I can hardly handle living. It's hard to find the words To convey it's too much for me. My sight is fine, I'm reassured, But in this light, I barely see. But it'd be better than the darkness, It'd be better than the blight. It'd be better than the prospect Of an everlasting night. The hours still sail onward by. How else can I describe time Than a puzzle, challenge we always try, Than a capsule we are stuck inside. I notice it takes longer For the afternoon to expire. The day just passes slower At the segment I'm most tired. But soon enough, the waves of day Are slowly overtaken. Progressively, I watch it break Out of that brighter haze and I feel this sense of relief Almost as I did with the dawn. The eve is much more calming; To deny that would feel wrong. I find that I'm exhausted, That the tiredness can be brought in By things that shouldn't have me distraught, but when It's all you're ever taught, then You find in the mundane great fear, Avoiding all things different or strange. You guard the things you hold dear And are terrified of change. It's a hard behavior to expel, But it can somewhat ease. As the last of light starts to dispel, I'm aware that it's routine. Even as the stars start showing With the vanish of the light, The cycle of the hours Is an everlasting fight. So be it as it may, Let time march forward as it might, I'm perfectly content with this, For it will be alright. Long will live the day, And until then, long live the night.
3
0
Consistency: 08/23/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 24, 2022
How many lives have we spent doing this? We play this game, or so I like to call it, with the same animosity towards each other being carried across eons. The energy never decreases, only stagnating; if anything, it only heightened as the years went on. It was like a force we couldn't understand. We each loathed the other, yet had no real reason to or idea why. Of course, that's the nature of reincarnation. You forget things. Upon death, the recollection of everything else just floods back, and it's exhilarating if not an overwhelming experience. And so you move on from there, eventually reemerging into the world as something greater than yourself. But here we are now, with all our memories returned to us, in that world, that reality between lives. Though a better word for between would be *after* now, I suppose. Oh, haven't you noticed? How long we've been here, how much longer it's all taking than normal to be gifted new life? We're not going back. Next time, you say? Next time, things will be different? There won't be a next time at all, darling. This is it. We have all of eternity to go at each other's throats. The universe is our backdrop, the stage set for this performance like no other. Predictable as always, you lunge at me. You swing. You miss. How many times have I said now that you can't go in predictably and expect to get your way? It doesn't matter. We have all the time in the world now to work through that. It's a dance that you still haven't learned, and we will be here forever to master it.
2
0
Consistency: 08/22/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 23, 2022
I mark off another day with the same red “x” that I always have. Some days, I feel it's my only sense of accomplishment. I know that I do more than just survive, much more, but it's hard when people only pay attention to your mistakes. Really, when you're offering to help and even helping without that (which, really, you should be doing anyway, but I digress), and the one time it's ever acknowledged is when you forget something or you do something wrong, it's very demoralizing. When people hone in on what's wrong with the way you act and how you speak and *you* altogether, you tend to internalize a lot of that. And then later, when you apologize for every little thing and you have all these insecurities and worried that seemingly came out of nowhere, and they act like you're being ridiculous and that it all spawned from thin air, and you never once get an apology for anything they say or do to you, you tend to get angry. You become a very angry person. This is my outlet for that aggression. The end of my day is a time to regroup and really think about what's been happening in my life. It's a time to actually pause for a minute, where I can stop the world around me for just a few moments and try my best to calm myself down. But still. When you have no one to really talk to about it, and you hold your tongue even when you get the chance to speak because you're afraid of how it'll go down and somehow be turned on you, it's very stressful. It's a *very* stressful thing to have to deal with on top of everything else. They act like I don't know responsibility, that I don't know the worries of the “real world,” that I've never faced hardship when I have. I have been through things, real experiences, and it's been so much more impactful on me than they could ever imagine. It's so much worse than they could possibly conceive. And when I tried to get them to conceive it, they came to the conclusion that I was at fault for existing, rather than the harassers being at fault for ... harassment. Very solid logic there. But it makes things difficult. Very difficult. Making it through every day is a chore, and I am constantly exhausted. ... But I've made it through every day so far, as hard as it can be. That's gotta be worth something, right ...? It is to me. That's all that matters. I mark off another day with an “x” on the calendar. Just one more year. One more year and I'll be gone, and I'll never have to come back.
3
0
Consistency: 08/21/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 22, 2022
Horus has lived for a very long time. It's something people don't often expect, which wasn't surprising. It was a very specific question to ask, and the topic of how long elves lived just ... never came up anyway. But it's been a lot, and he's seen a lot. Horus witnessed and lived through the Golden Era, the many movements both religious and scientific that swept the nations, the War on All Humanity, the list goes on. Centuries of events and timelines that Horus himself can attest to, and he has the very primary sources needed to prove it. And yet he never does. Why not, I wonder? A cough erupts from his throat, completely unexpected. Horus covers his mouth with a fist and leans forward on the nearest tree for support until it subsides, taken aback by how sudden the fit came on. Normally, he has a warning. That's just what happens as one moves forward in life, he supposes. Those who age slower simply take a very long time to age, and an even longer time to die. But they still do. They always do. And you never, ever expect it. Not at first, at least. Horus suspects that it will get easier to predict as time progresses. The wind cuts through the cool morning mist, and he feels a wave of nostalgia course through him, but it just doesn't invigorate him like it used to. Energy is shared throughout the universe, you see, and Horus doesn't need to take it anymore. He's at a point where he is perfectly content with giving back what he has and then leaving at peace with the universe. The sound of laughter makes its way to him, and Horus sees the watchtower in the immediate distance. He sees the rest of the rangers gathered around, talking, most definitely sharing jokes, as lively as he's ever seen them. It couldn't be more ironic. And he couldn't be happier. Horus is glad that they have each other. Maybe he's had enough adventure for one life, and is perfectly satisfied with the way things will be going in the very near future, but that isn't to say the grief won't strike the rest of them. And it isn't to say that he doesn't care, for he loves them all so dearly. But life moves on, and so, too, will it without him. And they'll have each other, won't they? They'll be okay. And that is enough. Horus looks up at the treetops, where the rising sun has just started to emerge over the distant mountain peaks, the rays dispersing and blessing everything they touch with light. It may not have reached all the land yet, but in due time, it will. And that is enough. He sighs before heading back to join what he could almost call a family. They might not be blood related, but in the grand scheme of things, it hardly matters. They're there for each other anyway. Always have been, always will be. And that is enough. Donovan is the first to notice him. They wave, with the smallest smile on their face, and Horus waves back with a smile of his own. “Hey, kid!” It's been a good life.
3
0
Consistency: 08/20/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 21, 2022
(( cw for implications of the world ending and that kind of existential talk, and also for blood and the character here accidentally hurting themselves )) The snow crunches under his boots as he walks, his steps as certain and sturdy as they could be. It continues to fall to the ground, slowly -- slowly -- building. Expanding. Increasing the risk of him sinking into it with no way back out. The path he takes is uncertain and, on top of that, shrouded in darkness, and Finn could only rely on the lantern's dying light to illuminate the way forward. This place is inhabitable for all nonmagic kind. That much is absolute. But it's stable, consistent in its harsh conditions. Predictable. Boring. It's something Clover wouldn't like, so he definitely didn't stay in the area for long. Thankfully for him, Finn isn't looking for Clover. Rather, he's looking for the one thing that can bind that madman from harm, unto others and unto himself. Finn is hoping, for his sake and the world's, that the Heart is still together, and here. It will be. It must be. All is lost if it isn't. It feels like hours that he looks. The lantern has long since died out, abandoned somewhere on the trail, and just as he's about to give up -- Something scrapes his hand. It hurts. It stings. It's *glass.* The last place you look. It's always the last place you look. Finn digs through the snow, searching for that source of light, and he feels it. He feels the rest of the object. He scoops it up into his hands; the Heart of Luck, the only thing left that could anchor Clover down from wreaking destruction on all of Agaria -- ... Shards. It's just ... shards. The Heart has been broken into pieces. No. Finn shakes his head, trying to put the pieces back together. No. His eyes widen, eyebrows drawing down, and his efforts grow more shaky. Frantic. No. This can't be right. No. This was their only hope. No. The seal can't be broken. Everything is at stake. No. No. Without this, Finn would have to- *have to --* No. He'd have to kill him. He can't do it. No. He can't. Clover is too powerful. Finn cares too much. No. No. No. Finn keeps trying, pouring what could almost literally be his heart and soul into it, and not even his mana and the cold energy of his master spellwork could glue it back together. The Hearts were too old, made up of a charm too ancient. No power at all could change it. No. The wind grows harsher. The snow falls harder. Finn feels something sting at his eyes, and he can't tell if it's tears welling up or the very air being so ruthless. No. You can only rely on magic for so long. There is no payoff to his efforts, and Finn can feel himself beginning to succumb to exhaustion. Or maybe it was the ice storm encompassing his surroundings, slowly but surely draining the life out of him. He sinks to his knees, shuddering in discomfort, pain, at the feeling of the cold building up to his waist, and lets the now worthless remnants fall through his fingers. No. Some of the cursed, beautiful, *wicked* substance descending from the sky lands so delicately into his palms. A deep, grim red quickly pools into and overwhelms the white. The only sound that makes it beyond the wind is a choked sob. No. No. No. ... ... No. This was ... world shattering. The implications of Agaria as they know it nearing its end, and now being rendered completely powerless to do a thing about it, is nothing short of devastating. ... the knowledge. That divine ability to tap into a future you know you can't change. It's always haunted Finn, and it'd drive anyone mad eventually if they had to face it all alone. The one time he tells someone ... The one person he thinks, hopes, for once, might *actually* change the future, and they end up catalyzing it instead. Betrayal. Even in the storm, Finn knows not a more bitter, colder feeling. Those visions. Those of sickness, of pain, of blight, of no certainty beyond an imminent demise. It's such a dangerous power for one person to hold. Finn should never have trusted anyone with it, and rest assured, it is a mistake he will never make again.
5
0
Consistency: 08/19/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 20, 2022
(( CW for kidnapping and a crime scene investigation!! )) “Hm ...” Taka narrows his eyes as he examines it. Everything else in the room had been shattered, thrown around in what had to have been a decent struggle, or otherwise strewn asunder. Yet this ... antique. Not necessarily an antique, no, that can't be the right word, but in any case, it looked quite worn. Yet it was intact. Not spotless, but intact nonetheless. This one ... alarm clock. It was the only thing in the room worth taking back for investigation. It was an interesting find, to say the least. The clock in question was a physical one, but one that displayed the numbers digitally. Parts of the screen were cracked, and it wouldn't power on, but it wasn't broken beyond repair. In fact, if he could just get it powered up again, the time would theoretically indicate the very time this kidnapping occurred. A priceless shard of evidence, the exact time that a crime takes place. From there, it just takes asking around and narrowing down who the victim was with and when, and it doesn't take much more beyond that to find the culprit. Assuming, of course, that the culprit is someone the victim knew. Taka hopes for their sake that it is, but only in the context of it being easier to find them faster, before they run out of time completely. Everything else about that idea, however, is absolutely tragic. The whole ordeal is sickening. ... time. Running out of time, like this device did. Taka is sure to take note of this; an object from the scene this telling cannot be handled with anything but the *utmost* care and professionalism, somehow more so than anything else. If he can get this back to the station, and they can somehow get it powered on, it'd be a miracle. And they're gonna need a few more of those if they want to find this person before it's too late.
4
0
Consistency: 08/18/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 19, 2022
Ältere may not be good at expressing his affection -- or, well, anything -- through words, but he has other things that can get the message across to his friends. Two ways in particular were definitely of his favorites: spending time with someone and getting to know their interests, and cooking. Fortunately, Ältere was able to blend these two activities into one and actively help out in the kitchen, despite being a god awful cook the second he strayed from a recipe. Unfortunately, there was no recipe. And Flora is what Ältere would call insane. “How do I know when it's done ...?” “Oh, that's easy!” Flora smiles with a light in his eyes that Ältere hadn't seen for a long, long time. “The whole thing takes, like, thirty minutes if you do it right! Something around that, at least ...” Ältere clears his throat. “Any, uh .. exact measurements?” His eyebrows raise a bit with concern, but it's impossible to tell with that ridiculous hat he has on. It stretches so far forward and drapes over his forehead for absolutely no reason. Why, Ältere. Why. You don't even need to have that on! You're in the kitchen!! “Nope! I just eyeball it!” “You do?” Flora nods with an air of confidence that Ältere rarely sees in him. If only it wasn't in this context ... “Always have!” *“Why?”* “Because it'll turn out fine either way!” He waves his hand off, as if to literally brush the worry aside. “It's just soup.” A. Ah. Ältere, being a very “exact measurements” kind of guy in every aspect of life, felt anxiety start to rise up just by being a part of this exchange. Surely, there's so much that could go wrong if Flora isn't careful! What if you add too much of one thing, or leave something else out entirely, or just forget altogether where you're at? “It's, uh- quite easy to mess up at any point in the culinary process, Flora-” “And?” ... the response takes him aback. This kind of nonchalant behavior was so ... out of character. Or at least. So he thought. Perhaps Ältere doesn't know him nearly as well as he thought he did. “.. wh ... what do you mean, *and?”* Flora laughs, a genuine, not forced, free of strain and nervousness kind of laugh, and in that moment it's as if all of Ältere's concerns are dissolved at once and all is right with the world. “Of course there'll be imperfections, even if you followed something by the book, to the letter! But that's what makes it fun, right? Every experience is unique.” “... Huh.” He never ... thought of it that way. “How ... oddly insightful of you.” “Plus!” He goes back to stirring. Flora should probably leave it be, but he apparently *greatly* enjoys stirring. Ältere can't really blame him, either; it is kind of fun. “You get to do this, and there's all of this hard work that goes into an end result and it's good! And then you're not as cold if you make it in the winter! It's a real hit during the solstice.” Ältere just watches as Flora does his thing with a sense of amazement. In all these weeks, he'd never seen Flora so calm. So ... full of life. He was in his element, and they were connecting the only way they knew how, and they were happy. They were ... happy. “... I suppose you're right.” If only it could stay like this.
2
0
Consistency: 08/17/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 18, 2022
Cold. The ground is so cold, even for the later autumn season. The impact of the fall has left Flora winded and disoriented, and he struggles to even make sense of what he's seeing right now, let alone get up. It's this ... mess of colors, and he's hearing sounds (what else *would* he hear?) but he can't at all tell what they mean, and ... And it hurts. Something ... hurts. Burns. His arm. He's too panicked to focus on that, though, too worried about staying alive that he can't account for anything other than the fact that he is still breathing. He's still ... breathing. That's ... good. That's good. Right? ... Is he? “My, my! You're ... you're alive!” Flora's vision focuses enough to recognize the figure above him: Clover. The one that knocked him down. The one that tried to kill him, and very well could have succeeded. Flora doesn't know how he's alive and, judging from the slight, split second falter in their voice, neither does Clover. “I see ...! How unforeseen ... how *exciting!”* Oh, no. Clover doesn't acknowledge whatsoever that even if Flora survived the magic attack, he still got floored by essentially nothing. Instead, they almost seem to rejoice over the fact that they need to put in more effort to take him out, however minimal that effort may end up being in the long run. “Wonderful, just wonderful! A duel, we'll have for rivals' clash; prepare, lest it may be your last!” Clover throws his arms out and spins, elated, and it's as if the very wind around them bends and turns to his will. “When Luna does her rounds times three, I expect you here in wait for me! Oh, what a sight I'm soon to see, the surefire demise of thee ...” Flora doesn't have any idea WHAT he's talking about, only looking on with confusion and fear as Clover tips his hat and escapes into the night. “Until then, Flora! I **will** be waiting.”
4
0
Consistency: 08/16/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 17, 2022
(( cw: toxic relationship )) You're like a bad habit. I wish that I could have caught it earlier on than I did, because maybe if I did, it wouldn't stress me out so much to think about you. To be reminded of you. But it's hard, you know? And it was hard then. It's so difficult to lose people even if you know somewhere in your gut that what's happening is wrong and the things they say and do aren't at all good for you, especially in the kind of situation I was in. I was being singled out, and it was scary. It was change. It was terrifying. And you were a sense of familiarity and a loving figure in that darkness. People were chaos that I was never ready for, and you were security, and hanging onto you and ignoring all the red flags was just so *easy.* I wish it never happened. In a way, I'm grateful for the experience and how, in its own messed up fashion, it was another lesson that I otherwise might not have learned in time to stop something much worse. But why did it have to go so wrong? Why did you have to be the way you were? I wish things were different. I wish things were better. In a way, I wish I'd never met you at all. Obsessing over it, reliving every moment and trying to pick apart just where it all went wrong and how I never noticed it earlier, that's the bad habit. And so is the way in which I organize my life around any reminders of you and the situation and everything that might bring it all back. And so is my tendency to avoid conversations like this because of how much more simple it is to pretend it never happened. If only it never had to.
2
0
Consistency: 08/15/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 16, 2022
Summer was, without a doubt, the *least* best season. That's how Strange always saw it, at least. Can you really blame him? He can't stand the hot weather, it's so humid out that he feels like he's going to melt, and his wardrobe consists almost *exclusively* of dark, baggy clothes. It's a recipe for disaster, and one he unfortunately can't stop. (Except for the variables he can stop, which he isn't too keen on changing. Strange thinks that the surrounding climate should change to fit his clothes and not the other way around, actually, and the fact that that's not how it works is very telling of the society we live in.) God, he can't wait until it starts getting cooler. Any season is better than this. Literally *any* season is better than this. The heat is also exhausting to be out in for too long, especially for someone who tends to lurk about indoors instead of absorbing all of the light rays that happen to fall anywhere near the Sunshine State. So here Strange is, at the end of a long day at work -- that work being helping out Beau with all of his gardening nonsense -- fatigue hitting him like a truck, at his table, with his tea that he goes out of his way to never *ever* sweeten, and seriously considering just putting his head down and taking a fat nap then and there. He hates Florida. He *hates Florida.* If it wasn't such a hassle to move and the state-specific scholarship didn't tie him down, he would have by now. The sound of a key turning in the apartment door lock moves through the otherwise quiet room, and Strange nearly doesn't register it. Living alone for a year or two made it very unsettling and almost unadjustable when someone actually started coming over to talk to him on a consistent basis, but now that it's been a few months, he's grown very accustomed to it. And this system they use lets him know who's at the door, which is also a relief. Sullivan is the only other person with a house key. Well. Apartment ...? Key ...?? You get the point. “Hey!” Sulley invites himself in as always, books in tow that he really doesn't need to be carrying around everywhere. Especially not on days where they didn't even have class. Strange is too tired to nag on him about it again today, though. They'll live. “So I was wondering -- oh my god, it's *ridiculous* today, the light is actually blinding and it reflects on every surface and you can hardly *see* out there --” Sulley starts rambling, and everyone who knows Sulley knows that once he starts talking, he does not stop for anything. Strange just might know this better than anyone else. He finds himself zoning out as they talk, going off about how if they could just change the seasons at will, then they would, but then going into the ethics of what that would actually be like if people could just bend reality to their will and actually, you know what? Maybe the seasons are fine the way they are, maybe we don't have to change them and- hey, Strange, buddy, you there? You listening? Hello? Strange? *“-- Strange!!”* He feels a sudden pain in his head before sitting back up. Dammit, he thinks as he props his head up on one hand instead of just flopping forward again. He must've nodded off without realizing. God, he's so ready to go to bed. What time is it? Where are they? Are we done yet? “Are you alright?” It's as if Sulley learned how to teleport to his side out of the sheer willpower that can come from concern. Or maybe he could teleport the whole time and is just now choosing to reveal this superpower. Or maybe Strange was supposed to know the whole time and he's a fucking idiot. Any explanation works. “My bad.” “Dude, are you good?” “Yeah, just actually went outside. Quite literally touched grass, it's like the whole point and Beau kept telling me how to do this and how to do that and like ... I think he's really sweet, he can just be ...” His sentence trails off. It's unclear whether that was intentional or if his train of thought was genuinely just completely derailed at that moment. “... you know?” Sulley did not know. But he was going to nod and go with it anyway. “.. OH, THAT'S what I was going to say!! Okay okay SO.” Sulley pulls out the other chair and sits down across from Strange. “I know you hate the summer because you think it's all icky or whatever --” “It IS all icky and whatever.” “Which is fine! Valid! And you don't really like that oceanography class, BUT. I think I've found a way we can maybe go do something and incorporate those things into one thing ...? And maybe make it all less stressful?” “Like ...?” “I'm not sure! We'll figure it out later.” From the looks of it, Sulley tries to fight off a yawn and ultimately does a terrible job. “'m thinkin' maybe something like ... going out and taking notes and stuff on things we see? I think that'd be pretty ... pretty neat ...” “Your idea of fun is very skewed.” “You're just not looking hard enough.” “Maybe.” Strange appreciates the gesture, really, just as much as he appreciates the way that their dynamic is this kind of default way of talking to each other. It definitely looks a bit odd on the outside, and to anyone who doesn't really know either of them, Sulley can come across as too eccentric or even hyper and Strange may seem completely unapproachable, but they've both gradually started working beyond that. Things developed from a reluctant partnership one time for one competition to an actual ... friendship. And one that's far less stressful than some of the other perils that have been thrown his way or general direction over the years. It's ... nice. ... Why is Sullivan looking at him weird. “You're .. smiling.” Just as quickly as it showed up, it was gone. “No.” “You can't just *no* that!!!” “Yeah, I can. Just did.” He stands up. “... it does sound like a good idea, though. The whole- immersion business, I mean.” “Cool!” ... “But, uh. We're not doing that today, right?” “No. Way too tired.” And now his head hurts to go along with that. “Understandable.” “And it's also way too hot out.” “Oh, yeah, agreed.”
3
0
Consistency: 08/14/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 14, 2022
(( I DIDN'T MEAN FOR THIS TO BE SO LONG I AM SO SORRY. also this takes place like almost at the end of the wip this is for so if the Detective Work doesn't make sense it's most likely from a lack of context okay that's all bye forever )) “I've figured it out!” “.. uhh ...” “No, really, this time!” Marcus slams his hands on the desk, making Taka jolt back in surprise. “Jesus,” Taka almost yells, “don't just *do* that all of a sudden ...” “Sorry, sorry! But, but, but! Worry no more, Endohora, I have it *all* unraveled!” He turns to the wall behind him with the map of the facility, and moves the map aside, revealing something akin to what you'd see on the walls of the room of any devoted conspiracy theorist, red strings and random circles of photos and all. There's a whole timeline and everything. Marcus has written down the names and extra information of every participant, as well as who died, when, and where. Taka can only look on with dismay. “Oh, Marcus, you *didn't.”* “I *did!”* His grin only gets bigger, which Taka didn't think was even possible. He points immediately to some of the pictures clustered around the left corner. They were all blurred more or less with motion, and from odd, distant angles. Like the subjects of the pictures weren't aware of the camera. Like they weren't supposed to be aware of the camera. And the subjects were them. Taka was there, Marcus was there, everyone they've seen, and a bunch of other people that they've never met before. It's unnerving. “These? Right here? Must date back however long it's been before we got stuck in these buildings, yeah?” “Mhm ...?” Taka nods, hesitantly, wanting so badly to understand but also expecting nothing more than a half baked theory. Where are you going with this, Fisher. Marcus points to two of them in particular. One is of ... it appears to be Octavian. And the other is of Marcus himself. “Now, this. *This* is what's tripping me up.” Slowly, the cogs in his brain start turning, and they catch on to what he's trying to say. “... I get it now. Octavian doesn't even live in the US, and you're from Florida, right?” “Born and raised! But why would you need to take pictures of your victims, and how could you do it at such similar times like this if they live so far apart? I'm still unsure of the first part of that question, but ...” “How do you know when they were taken?” “I'm getting there, don't worry!” “... alright ... well, I don't think you physically *can* do it with just one person like that ...” Taka furrows his eyebrows and leans forward a bit from where he sits. “You're telling me this is confirmation that there's more than one person in on it?” “Yeah, and that's not all! I've figured out one of 'em. And who might be the one pulling the strings behind this whole operation.” Despite his distrust and complete lack of faith in Marcus, Taka finds himself getting his hopes up for a fraction of a second. “You have!?” “Maybe. I'm not as sure about this bit, doesn't make much sense beyond what we know for absolute certain, but ...” He pulls out something from the drawer on his side, and holds it up for Taka to see, who feels their heart drop. It's a camera, alright. But not just any camera. “This ...” “Those pictures were from here.” “... You're saying Bee took the pictures?” Taka looks up at Marcus with a skeptical face. “They couldn't have been in two places at once.” “I don't think it was *just* Bee. In fact, it might not have been Bee at all.” “Why do you make everything so confusing.” “It wasn't *all* of the pictures --” “So you should have started with that --” “Will you let me finish!? Bee didn't have their camera when we first got here, remember? They were looking everywhere for it, and didn't find it until we got to that arcade room.” Why did they even have an arcade room, anyway? This place, wherever it is, is so ridiculously confusing that Taka wonders if it was designed that way intentionally. “And when they ... when. They.” Marcus didn't have to finish that sentence. They both know all too well what happened at the maze. ... He clears his throat. “... anyway. They told me before it all started that if something were to happen to them, their camera was in their room, and to not under *any* circumstances let anything happen to it or the photos inside. So I .. took it. And I looked through the camera roll. “And those weird, far away pictures of us were hidden under other, completely normal shots! Which I found interesting. But the point is, I've figured out when these were taken.” He begins moving some of the pictures to the timeline area, right up behind where it actually starts. “And it's important to figure out the when, you know? The when before the why or even the who, because that's how you piece stuff together.” “Marcus, what are you talking about?” “I'm saying that the order of the photos here led me to suspect that someone stole their camera specifically to frame them, but then failed to take into account that there was no way one person could have just done it on their own like that.” “So it's ... not Bee. Bee is in the clear.” Taka just wants to make sure he's following all of this correctly. “Nope! But do you remember *where* Bee said they lived?” This is going on way too long. But if Taka wants clarity and understanding of whatever ideas Marcus has, he has to sit through all the rambles and side tangents and random facts only loosely related to the situation that will get thrown their way. So they grit their teeth and bear it. “.. somewhere in the Netherlands, I think ...?” “Yes! Exactly!” Marcus frowns, with a kind of serious but not too exaggerated expression that Taka isn't used to seeing on him. It's a bit worrying. “... well?” “And someone,” he adds, “was just *visiting* the Netherlands right before all of this happened. He's brought it up a few times, you know?” ... Oh. OH. That feeling, like a light bulb going off, is one that never gets old, but the knowledge that this train of thought makes a little *too* much sense is enough to scare him more than a little. “Shigeru.”
4
0
Consistency: 08/13/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 13, 2022
Why is it so hard to fall into a good work routine? Yeah, old habits die hard, but *still.* God damn. Maybe if Fallon had done this earlier, she wouldn't be up so late doing her work like this! And she sorely regrets not taking time out of the rest of her day to get some of it done, too! Her only excuse is that it was intimidating her. She thought she was going to fail if she tried, so she didn't try at all up until now, and now she's *really* gonna fail. It's a self fulfilling prophecy and it will only keep happening until she does something about it. And she has no idea what to do about it. General chemistry. It has around a 50% pass rate, or so she hears, and she truly hopes it's just hearsay because that thought alone is terrifying! You mean to tell her that one of every two students passes? You mean to tell her that she has a 50% chance of failing!? This is not good. This is not good at all. Fallon hurriedly looks through the files on her computer, trying to find that literature review that she'd abandoned up until this point and is abandoning the rest of her normal Things That She Does In The Evening for now. Why! Why must it all be so disorganized! Curse this organization! Curse this setup!! Curse *her!!!* She hasn't even showered, and there's so much else that has to be done, but that can wait. All her other responsibilities are going to have to deal with sitting on the back burner for now, because this paper *must* be completed and posted to that forum *or else.* It is, quite literally, a matter of life and death for her future career in the field of genetics!! She isn't going to let her years of research and hard work leading up to getting into this college go to waste because *someone* didn't want to do their chemistry assignment in freshman year!!! Ugh!!!! ***UGH!!!!!*** Fallon eventually finds it -- thank God -- and barely glimpses over the words before frantically adding on, fighting for her life to reach the word count. 1,000 words. That's not that hard. You can get to 1,000 words, right, Fallon? Right? ... Fallon? She jolts back, shaking her head. God. She's tired. She's normally in bed this time an hour ago ... Maybe two hours ago ...? Whatever the case may be, she's staying up much later than normal. And she definitely doesn't want to. It'd be so much easier to just give up and go to bed now, but she does NOT have the time for that. Short term gratifications are temporary. Schoolwork follows you **forever.** Time passes much faster than she wants it to, and the race against the clock that she's grown so accustomed to has never stopped being so nerve wracking. Have you ever gotten to the point in rushing through something where you can hardly copy the words or numbers down that you're thinking of? Where your hands start to shake and it's hard to get through anything further than what you have? Yeah. She's at that point. But she perseveres, and eventually, Fallon finally, *finally* finishes the paper. And it is SO bad. But she doesn't care right now. Fallon can deal with the feedback later, but right now, at this moment, what matters is that she got it done. 11:56 PM is the registered time in the system that she turned in the work. It could not have gotten *any* closer than that. It may not be pretty, and it may not be the best thing she's ever written by a long shot. But it's her work. And it's done. And once it goes through, she immediately crashes on her bed. One day, she'll make better study routines into a habit. One day, it'll get a little easier. Today is not that day, though, and something tells me it won't be tomorrow, either.
3
0
Consistency: 08/12/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 13, 2022
(( no matter how much i struggled with writing today, i refuse to give up now. I am in far too deep and I am COMMITTED. if the narration seems frantic and doesn't make sense then that's exactly what I was going for; this was a mix between a character exercise and kind of dabbling in unreliable narrator territory to an extent )) One hour. Marcus has to make it through one hour, and then everything else will work itself out. Life will be a breeze after this is over, but he's gotta fight for it first like he fights for everything he has left. Always fighting, always fighting, clawing for any chance at anything at all because he has to try his hardest if he wants to hope for anything just like the times have to fight to keep changing and time has to fight to keep moving. Thinking about the time makes his heart rate spike. Had to be some time around three in the morning for sure, for sure! For sure, it must be, because he can already feel that those empowered by this time have arrived. Spirits. Demons. Perhaps something even worse. The witching hour. Not every person believes in the supernatural, in the paranormal or otherworldly justifications behind the unexplained phenomenon of the otherwise natural and sensible world. But it would be wrong to argue that those who were superstitious of it were far and few in between, for that couldn't be farther from the truth. And of those believers, Marcus is part of the crowd that takes precautions against the unseen forces, by far, the most seriously. That's all a bunch of longer words just thrown together without much thought behind it. Marcus tends to talk like that a lot once he really starts rambling. Sometimes, he even comes up with his *own* words! Like sensical, derived from nonsensical and meaning the exact opposite! Does that make any sense? Not really! A word of sense not making sense itself is such a beautifully contradictory thing! Is it a word already, I wonder? Has someone else already done it? Well, if it was already a thing, maybe whoever came up with it should have tried a little harder to get recognition for it, and they can just suck it up now because it's his now and that's what Marcus had to do for his entire life and *he's* had things stolen from him and *he* didn't whine *nearly* as much, *did* he--!? A loud *BANG* that may or may not be a product of his own mind snaps him away from that train of thought and gets him back to the more important track: defending himself out here where there's no other option than to fend off the demons alone that surely lurk here. The forest is dark, and cold, and the shadows cast over the area weave between the branches of the dying trees and fall lifeless to the ground. The weather is unforgiving. Not at all the best condition, but it's not as if Marcus had a choice in the matter, either. It was either he escaped right then and there or he'd *never* get out, and if he was gonna be stuck with the latter option *then so help me, why don't you just kill me now and get it over with!* He can hear them. Footsteps. They're faint, they're distant, but they're there, and it's the people and he knows it's the people because that's the kind of steps that only people make because people let themselves be heard even when they try not to. People fumble and make noise and shatter even if they don't want anyone to see. It's because people are stupid, so stupid. Well, Marcus is beyond that. He doesn't have time nor the energy nor the care to dwell on his own humanity in relation to all of these astonishing revelations, because he needs to dedicate all of that to running right now. And run, he does. This is his only hope at ever living a life at all, so he's persistent. And he's tenacious. He won't let the hands that reach out from under the dirt grab his ankles, and he won't let the moon fall down to the earth itself to crush him in its weight, and he's not stopping when the stars start falling in brilliant blazes of light and fury, and he's not going to stop for the people who are yelling for him to come back and he isn't running slow enough for the eyes to even have time to track him down because they blink and he's gone, they blink, they blink, they blink, and it's always too much and it's never enough because it'll never not sting to keep their eyes open and they always know exactly where he is anyway and *he'll never let them reach him.* It'll take an hour to get out of these woods. An hour stands between Marcus and opportunity and safety and freedom. And he'll be damned if he lets some monster hellbent on taking that get to him before he gets out.
3
0
Consistency: 08/11/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 12, 2022
It's so much harder to connect to people and navigate other aspects of life than it used to be, which is the exact opposite thing that Azzy expected for all his life. As a kid, he believed that this socializing business would get easier as he got older. The working theory was that he'd learn to recognize social cues more, get better at blending in with the environment, and then it'd all be okay! Azzy would be a communication *expert* by the time he was fully grown, and they would have done so much and made so many friends and it was going to be awesome! Well. They're eighteen now, have been for a while, so ... close enough. And if anything, it's only gotten more difficult and more confusing. Kids were honestly easier to read, because most of the time, they were direct and didn't bother with trying to beat around the bush. (And if they did, it'd be obvious, anyway.) If they were sad, or angry, or uncomfortable, most of the time, they would just tell you upfront, sometimes a bit *too* directly, because children didn't often stop to think about the impact of their words before they spoke. But now. Now, people have gotten much worse with it. The social norm is to lie for the sake of politeness or convenience (even if it's as simple as a “No, I'm fine! How was *your* day?”), which he doesn't understand and kind of feels guilty about every time he does it. Isn't he deceiving people in this way? If it's the better choice to make, then why does he feel so bad about it? In any case, Azzy was dead wrong. Always has been. And the fact that they were wrong is extremely embarrassing. Ugh. Embarrassment. It's one of the worst feelings, goes hand in hand with shame. Makes him want to just worm out of his own skin, somehow, or get beamed out of his body and go literally anywhere except where whatever was happening at the given moment. And nowadays, they have a lot more to deal with. They need to focus on music, both as a hobby and a professional skill that needs fine tuning, and if they don't either continue their education or find a good job soon, then what kind of person would that make them? Would it be wrong for them to wait? Would it be so bad if they stopped to collect their thoughts and not rush into any big decisions like that? Azzy doesn't know. And every time he asks about it, he suspects the answers fail to be straightforward at best, and mislead him completely at worst. And he has friends, and he has family, and he loves them all dearly, but interacting with just about anyone is draining as all hell. He tries his best, and he truly means well, but it's absolutely exhausting. Hell, he practically just got home from practice with the band and he's already passed out in his room, most likely. The meet only lasted for a couple hours, but it was enough adventure for the week. And where's the story in that, huh? How am I supposed to write about you if you don't *do* anything? ... well, it can't be helped. Azzy has a lot more responsibilities, worries, and self awareness than he did over a decade ago, and that all weighs down on a person. It'd get to anybody after a long enough time of dealing with it. Azzy's a lot more tired than he used to be.
2
0
Consistency: 08/10/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 11, 2022
(( ALMOST MISSED THIS absolutely not. content warning for: murder (not that graphic there's just pain descriptions and stuff) and implications of a toxic relationship )) Marnie, by all accounts, should absolutely have been dead by now. Every year, he thinks that he's so sure, SO sure, that he couldn't possibly make it through another year. That every birthday he has, every year he survives, will be his last, and that karma or bad luck will catch up to him if his own bad habits don't get there first. Every year, he proves himself wrong. Every ... every year, he proves himself wrong. “Y ... You ...” Not this one, though. It's interesting, when old information you were sure *must* have been true is abruptly rendered outdated. Obsolete. And you would never see it coming until it's already said and done. A searing, stabbing pain forces its way through somewhere in his chest. He isn't sure where exactly the blade hit, and he doesn't bother to check. He knows it's pointless either way. Marnie knows who did it, there's two other people in the room and only one could have possibly backstabbed him from where they were standing, and it's absolutely devastating. To know that this person, someone who wanted to befriend him, someone who gave him hope that maybe he *could* make it in spite of everything in his way, was the same person to absolutely destroy him like this and then kill him off when he wasn't useful anymore ... ... Hashimoto. If Marnie somehow made it out of this, he'd have the sense to never love anyone like that again. His vision blurs, and he can feel his hands starting to numb. The shock from the complete surprise attack hasn't given him time to react to what just happened, and he already had a hard enough time processing things at a “normal” rate ... ... he will never be able to get over everything Hashimoto did to him. And he will never get back to his family. Those chances were taken away just like everything else. And that's what hurts the worst. The contact with the floor shortly following collapse doesn't harm as much as it does halt. All it really did was stop him from falling further or clipping down, which he's still half convinced he might be able to do. The fall *feels* way longer than it is, anyway, and it's incredibly disorienting. The hearing gives out last. Marnie doesn't pay attention to when everything else fades. ... Yelling. Someone's .. arguing? Why ...? He can't see. Marnie doesn't know. One of them has to be Hashimoto, definitely, but who's the other one? Lexi, maybe? Unless someone else somehow got in? Maybe it's all one person ..? What's ... happening, exactly ...? .. e ... exactly ... ... Well. He won't have to worry about it too much longer, anyway. And it doesn't really surprise him that it's ended like this. The only thing that baffles him is that by all accounts, this should have happened *so* much earlier than it did.
2
0
Consistency: 08/09/2022
In Discord Challenges
otto >:))))
Aug 09, 2022
“I'm so scared of getting old.” The statement takes Victor aback. He looks in Darby's general direction with concern. “What brought this on all of a sudden?” “Even ...” Darby sighs, taking an uncomfortably long time to collect their thoughts in a way that makes sense. They rarely coherently express themselves at all, so whenever he has the chance to, he either doesn't take it at all or completely freezes up. But if ... if Darby doesn't open up to somebody soon, then he's going to really regret it in the long run. You can only hold in emotions for so long. He decides to just get on with it, stumbling through his words with every second. “Even *if,* by some miracle, I do get out of here alive, I don't know what I'm going to do at all. I don't have direction in my life, I don't have a plan for what I want anymore, I don't ... “.. it's like- it's like my entire life has been a *lie.* It's all fabricated! It's this- this made up backstory and I'm this made up person and I don't know what to do with that information! “How have I aged up to this point? Can I even age at all? Do I *want* to? If there's a way to just bring me back every time, am I capable of truly dying? Is that a good thing? Does it even matter to try at anything at all if I get constant opportunities to redo all of it ...? “Did any of this -- this entire series of things just happening and only getting worse -- did it even mean anything? Are we all just doomed anyway? “I don't want to live to see myself get older because I'm so afraid of the inevitable, but I don't want to just die here, either. I wish I could .. I wish we could stay here, like this, in the eye of the storm and not have to worry about anything ever again, I ...” ... They take a deep breath in. “Forgive me, that was .. a lot. You don't have to- try to help, it's just ... it's good. To get that out.” “Darby, I ...” Victor thinks about trying to offer advice for a moment, but just shakes his head. He has no idea how to remedy this kind of situation, but God, he wishes he did. “I don't know what to say, I'm ... I'm really sorry.” Victor's voice always sounded like a deep, but faded purple. Like a rich color that you're only looking at in darkness. Here, it's almost giving out to gray. Almost. “It's fine,” Darby says, “it'll ... it'll be fine.” The breath out that was supposed to calm his nerves a bit came out as more of a heave than anything. They look down at their hands, palms open and facing them. Shaking. They ... they can't stop. A spike of cold energy shoots up his spine, and an icy, pale blue zaps across his field of vision. “It'll be ... okay ...” It'll be okay. It will. It has to be.
6
0
O
otto >:))))

otto >:))))

More actions