Scott d conklin funeral home obituaries
Concerned my friends (21F and 25M) are having an affair
2023.05.29 17:33 Acceptable_Task2040 Concerned my friends (21F and 25M) are having an affair
I (20sF) am part of a five member friend group and two of the friends, let’s call them Joanne and Tim, used to be in a relationship. I was always close with Joanne and Tim came into the friend group once they started dating. I’ve known these friends for nearly 4 years.
Tim was very toxic towards Joanne - manipulative, controlling, didn’t respect boundaries etc - and after just over a year of dating Joanne built up the courage to breakup with him. There were many times I listened to Joanne vent and cry about his behaviour and once she admitted to me that it was a matter of “when, not if” they broke up I supported her through this. I was so relieved for Joanne when it finally happened.
Tim and Joanne made a big show of still being friends as they claimed they didn’t want to break up the friend group. Eventually Joanne admitted to me that they had started sleeping together again, and on a group holiday I had the misfortune of walking in on them. I was naturally furious at this as me and Joanne were sharing a room and Tim should not have been there in the first place. Joanne begged my forgiveness and I let it go as I didn’t want to sour the mood while on holiday. In this period Tim was still horrible towards Joanne and she frequently came to me for advice and I began to run out of words as my advice was repeatedly ignored.
Fast forward a year and Tim has recently gotten a new girlfriend. I thought this was a good development as Tim would be less focused on Joanne and I hoped this would give Joanne permission to move on. She claimed that it didn’t bother her that Tim was in a new relationship as they hadn’t been sleeping together for a few months at that stage and that he was free to date whoever he wanted, she was just upset that he had made her promise not to be on Tinder or date anyone else after they broke up as it wasn’t fair on him however he was doing it all along.
We once again went on our annual group holiday and I noticed something odd. Joanne was being very friendly towards Tim - constantly disappearing off with him, putting her head on his shoulder on the plane. He was putting his hand on her knee at dinner, play fighting with her, and they were both constantly whispering to each other and giggling. They would be sending messages to each other on Snapchat at the dinner table and not doing a very good job at hiding it from the group. Whereas Joanne would normally rant and complain about her behaviour, she was unusually quiet about him.
One evening they disappeared away from the spa and when I eventually went up to the hotel room I found Tim and Joanne in the bathroom with the door mostly closed over. I was speechless. Tim instantly came out and held up a roll of toilet roll, claiming he was just borrowing a roll of toilet roll off of us as the cleaners hadn’t put one into the boy’s room that day (one of our other friends had mentioned that earlier in the day to be fair and Joanne had offered them our spare one). Tim joked that I must have PTSD after walking in on them last year and then jovially asked “Threesome?” before walking out laughing. Joanne swore that nothing had happened but it wasn’t a good look.
More recently since returning from holiday we had to attend a funeral. I don’t have a car so I asked Joanne for a lift. She told me she’d be at her family home outside of our city that day as it was at the weekend. I offered to get the train near to where her family live but she responded telling me not to worry as Tim would drive instead, picking me up first before her.
Oddly on the day of the funeral, she was already in the car when Tim arrived at my house. She explained that she decided to stay at her flat in our city without any further context which is surprising as she goes to her family home nearly every weekend. Her family home is on the way to the funeral anyway so it’s not as though her staying in our city was more convenient. As the day went, little comments led me to suspect that he had spent the night at her flat.
I can’t help but feel that they’re still hooking up. It’s confusing as all the evidence of a potential affair is somewhat circumstantial and I haven’t seen them do anything more explicit such as kissing or having sex.
I have been cheated on before myself so I know how much it destroys a person’s self esteem and makes it hard to enter future relationships. I feel if I were to speak up a lot of it could be explained away as just being close friends. I’m also scared that I could have false stories spread about me. I have since left the company we all used to work for and I’m concerned they would spread stories that might damage my professional reputation. Despite this I feel strongly that the new girlfriend deserves to know if Tim is having an affair.
My stance is that I will wait until I see something more physical such as making out before I tell his new girlfriend but I feel very on edge just waiting to witness something
So I come to relationship_advice
with the following questions. At what point do I tell the new girlfriend? And is there anyway to go about it without repercussions for myself?
Using a throwaway as I know most of the friend group browse Reddit
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2023.05.29 13:26 Naao_101 Seeking Feedback on Online Obituary Generator Website
I've been developing a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform that allows users to create online obituaries efficiently. It's a tool I've designed with funeral homes in mind, hoping to streamline their operations and offer additional value to their clients.
The platform allows the customization of obituaries with an easy-to-use interface, offers a variety of templates, and facilitates the sharing process to various social media platforms.
I'd greatly appreciate any feedback from this community regarding the following:
- The Website: Any suggestions about the design, usability, functionality, or any features you think would be beneficial to add?
- The Business Model: Thoughts on the per-use pricing model for funeral homes. Are there any alternative pricing models you think could be more effective?
- Marketing Strategy: I'm planning to approach funeral homes directly to sell this service, but I'm open to suggestions for other marketing strategies that could be effective.
- Market Demand: Do you think there's a demand for this kind of service? Are there any other markets you think I should be targeting?
You can access the platform at https://elysianmemorials.io/
. Thank you in advance for your time and feedback.
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2023.05.29 12:39 Angel466 [Bob the hobo] A Celestial Wars Spin-Off Part 0836
PART EIGHT HUNDRED AND THIRTY-SEVEN [Previous Chapter] [The Beginning] [Patreon+2] Thursday
Cora arrived beside the leg of her office chair in her Washington DC apartment. Being only a few inches tall and in a liquid form, she leaned her weight to her left and permitted her essence to be absorbed into the bare human foot that hadn’t moved for several hours. As her essence reintegrated with the mass, she felt her Mystallian lungs take a breath and lifted herself out of her chair, staring down at the computer. The monitor was in the midst of having the screen saver’s coloured lines bounce across the screen like an automated game of Pong.
An icy smile crossed her lips as she used the back of her knees to push the chair farther away and headed towards the door.
Nuncio appeared on the other side of the room next to the windows, his smile full of excitement. “Do you think they’ll do even half of what they said they’d do?” he asked, rubbing his hands together gleefully. “And man, I am going to be pissed if Haynes doesn’t leave her computer on so I can watch and award points for style after everything I’ve done to cover for them.”
Cora’s good mood deflated. “Aren’t you supposed to be in the Prydelands with Vadim?”
Nuncio waved his hand through the air dismissively. “He’s having a sleep-over with Hezkiss’ clutch. I wanted to free myself up in case things went awry with Monsieur le Fuck-Knuckle, and I had to get in there to give you a hand in person.”
Cora rolled two fingers upright between them. “Two of us … overseeing the operation of five humans absconding with another human?” She curled her lip in derision.
Nuncio folded his arms and hunched one shoulder ever so slightly. “Your friend at the NCIS has some good hackers, by the way,” he said, and Cora stilled. “I mean, not me
good obviously…” —he blew out a sharp raspberry— “…but still, that web trap they had set up for Haynes?” He pursed his lips and kissed his fingertips before flaring them in the classic ‘genius’ motion. “They’d have got her for sure with that if I hadn’t set off one of my line-tracers for them to chase down instead. They even had access to the dark web, following it all over the world. They won’t come up for air until at least this time tomorrow, and by then, they’ll know Portsmith’s been taken.”
Cora moved to the window to stare out at the cityscape, where she felt more than saw Nuncio’s eyes on her. “What’s wrong?” he asked warily. “You’re always saying punishments don’t fit the crimes anymore, and if anyone deserves a taste of hell, it’s that prick.”
Cora never took her eyes from the landscape as she placed a hand on her son’s shoulder, curling her fingers to squeeze.
Only the vice-like grip didn’t ease up. If anything, it increased, with her nails sharpening to penetrate the casual shirt he wore and biting into the flesh itself, giving her control of his physical form.
* * *
Too late, Nuncio realised he was caught, and when he turned to look at his mother, there was nothing in her stare to even hint at a loving maternal instinct. “You gave me quite the run-around, boy. Now, let’s see if you can give me one good reason why I don’t crank up every one of your pain receptors to a thousand percent of where they are right now.”
Nuncio whimpered and fled into his mind, creating his apartment living room in the Prydelands. Surrounded by the pryde and his Aunt Columbine’s calm presence (even if it was just his imagination) he calmed down enough to get a hold of himself.
His mother knew something. Something that she was pissed off enough to threaten him with bodily harm over. But what
was the question. There were layers to his misdealings, each inviting more trouble than the last. His mother wasn’t one to forgive and forget, but if he could somehow justify his actions, something that her innate had given him the opportunity to do instead of simply going straight to the ‘pain of a thousand deaths’
that she’d perfected too long ago to count.
The trick was … which layer had she figured out? If he short-changed himself, he would be in more trouble than he needed to be, but if he didn’t own up to what she knew he’d done, he’d really
be in trouble. Humpty Dumpty had nothing on shifters.
Despite freaking out, he was suddenly reminded of an old comedy routine he’d listened to about forty-something years ago, where a kid knew he was in trouble, ‘And out of the one hundred things I’d done wrong that day, I wasn’t sure which one he wanted to talk to me about’.
The way that kid had dealt with the problem would serve him just as badly. Saying “Who me?” at this juncture was likely to get him smashed into a pulp because both of them were painfully aware of the who. And to be honest, the who, in this case, didn’t really matter. His mother didn’t care about Alex Portsmith. He was barely a splattered bug on the windscreen of their lives, even more so now that he would pay for his crimes in full. Nothing about that warranted this pain crackdown.
Maybe it was the fact that he (and Fisk) had given Alex a family shield so that the veil wouldn’t protect him from the horrors that came from pissing off demonic royalty. Or maybe it was the fact that he, of all the shifters in Earlafaol, had helped Fisk hospitalise that no-good bastard.
That might annoy her, but again, not to this degree.
It might be the wild goose chase he’d led her on after she’d come to him wanting information about Noah and his people. He hadn’t said he’d known all about everything already and instead let her go on her merry way.
Yeah … that was probably what this was all about.
The first words out of his mouth, when he returned to the physical realm were, “I didn’t tell you I was involved because you were already days deep into your investigation and if you just stopped suddenly, it would’ve looked like you were covering something up.”
Her expression grew thoughtful, and her claws loosened. Not enough to release him, but enough for him to believe he’d hit the magic topic.
covering up something,” she said, staring through the windows.
“Yes, but it’s not from an FBI standpoint, is it? By handing that part of the case over to the NCIS, it’s not on you that they lost Portsmith during their investigation.” He turned to his mother. “See? It’s all good, right?”
The key was always distraction. Have people focus on what he was saying rather than what he wasn’t.
“And you were the shifter that helped Fisk break him.”
“He was a douchebag who deserved it, Mom. And once you came to me, telling me you wanted leads on the team Melody’s father heads, I spent a large portion of my time feeding them information and keeping the wolves at bay. I had to pull a hell of a lot of vanta-black trickery to convince those two guards to report immediately to the Naval Commanding Officer up in Saufley H—”
Her claws scraped the bone, but Nuncio endured it rather than numb the area. His mother was making a point, and it was integral to his ongoing health that he accepted her warning for what it was. Something he could heal the second she let him go.
“Don’t tell me the specifics of how you moved those Naval Police away from his door. I’ll find out at the reunion. If I keep myself ignorant until then, I won’t have to lie to Scott about what happened to his people.”
“You could always tell them how deeply embedded in the dark web the people you’re chasing are. They haven’t separated those two cases yet, have they?”
“You know they haven’t.”
“I’m not saying you have to lie, but come on, Mom. We both know that unless Grandmother was dipping into her powerbase, there’s plenty of ways to misdirect a line of enquiry.”
The claws bit so heavily into the shoulder that they punctured the bone and touched on either side, essentially shackling him to her. “Ow…ow-ow-ow-OW—Moooom,” Nuncio whined, his teeth gritting on the waves of pain that weren’t getting any easier to ignore. “Mom, that really hurts! Ow-ow!” But he wouldn’t beg. Never beg. She’d put his arm up to the elbow in a meat grinder if he begged, and she’d make sure he felt every bit of it. “Misdirection,”
his mother purred, ignoring the way Nuncio used his good hand against the window frame to keep himself upright. “Like the way Alex Portsmith’s Puerto Rican house was destroyed in a gaseous fireball afterwards that could’ve killed hundreds of US citizens.”
Back into his imagination he went. Okay. This was bad. Think, Nuncio. Think!
He walked around his apartment, alternating between tapping his forehead and patting his fingertips together to stimulate the thought process. The searing pain of his mother’s physical shackle was distracting, but he had to focus past it to find a solution.
Intentionally harming innocents that she was responsible for was a hard line to his mother. There was no justification for it, and he should’ve remembered that!
Well, there wasn’t until there was
… but those situations were few and far between and certainly not going to help him now. Offering to rebuild the area after the fact was lip service at best. Had he done it at the time, it would have been accepted, and the matter dropped, except Nuncio had wanted to keep himself out of this mother’s firing line, so he stayed quiet.
His best chance was to eat some humble pie. Something most Mystallians would rather die than do.
“I lost my shit,” he admitted, returning to the physical realm once more. “I saw the state she was in, saw how he had completely destroyed her for no other reason than because he could, and I lost it. In one move, I made sure she was safe, and the place that had been her prison could never be used for that again. I wasn’t thinking about the neighbours.” That last part, at least, was the absolute truth. Just not the way it was presented. He hadn’t thought about the neighbours because their lives and homes were inconsequential to him.
His mother’s grip lessened but didn’t release.
“I mean, you only read the reports, but I saw the burns, Mom. I watched the way she cowered. That jackass had her burning herself on the oven rings when he couldn’t be there to punish her himself. And he thought he had the right to do that.”
The claws loosened for all of two seconds. “You will reimburse everyone who took a financial hit during that destruction, correct?”
“Yes!” He might have yelped that out, but if doing a few hundred online transactions was all it took to get him out of this mess, he would grab it with both hands!
“Every single one of them.”
“Yes,” he agreed again, wondering why she was making him repeat himself.
“And just remember, that area is bitterly poor, and the internet doesn’t exist, so you’ll have to go there yourself to make reparations. To the dollar.”
Nuncio whimpered and sagged in her grip. The last thing he wanted to do was spend another second in that horrid area of the world, let alone hours.
Well, the second last thing … …just.
* * * ((Author's note: A little early because once again, my beta had a 12 hour shift tonight. ps: I just noticed the wrong number went up on the post - it should be 837
((All comments welcome. Good or bad, I'd love to hear your thoughts 🥰🤗)) I made a family tree/diagram of the Mystallian family that can be found here For more of my work including WPs: Angel466
or an index of previous WPS here
. FULL INDEX OF BOB THE HOBO TO DATE CAN BE FOUND HERE!!
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2023.05.29 08:30 PerspectiveCivil4306 AITAH for not calling my girlfriend on her birthday
My (22M) gf (22F) have been together for almost 4 years. She is away at medical school and had her birthday coming. I had planned on giving her a specially engraved gold signet ring that cost me a lot of money and required months of work by a specific jewellers to create. I was so excited to give her this on her birthday and spent a long time planning for this gift. She had always wanted it and I knew she would absolutely love it. Unfortunately, my great grandmother died at the age of 105 in her care home. It was to be expected after how long she’d braved through life but that time had to come for her.
When the funeral date was released, it was on my gf’s birthday. After knowing this, I told her and asked her what she was going to be doing. She said that she would be waking up at home then driving an hour and a half back to medical school in the morning and had a very busy day ahead of her. Lectures and studies etc. when I say she works hard, she works non stop all the hours of the day. On the morning of her birthday, I sent a really long and lovely birthday message by text saying how much I love her, I hope she has an amazing day and I can’t wait to celebrate it with her. She woke up 9 o clock at which I was already on my way to my grandmas house to rendezvous for the funeral car to arrive. I kept her up to date with what was going on whilst also asking her what she got for her birthday, what she’s up to today etc. Keeping happy and cheerful birthday morning messages for her before the funeral begins.
Once the funeral had started, she had set off back to medical school. Once the funeral was finished, we all met at my great grandmas favourite pub for the wake where we drank alcohol, ate food and celebrated her wonderful life at the ripe old of age of 105. I was quite occupied with family stuff. Throughout the day, I hadn’t been receiving many messages from my gf, assuming that she was busy so I thought nothing of it. When she’d message, I would continue to be asking about how her day has been, has everyone been giving her birthday wishes, did she receive any more presents from her friends etc. At the end of the night, the entire family were quite drunk, crying and overall ready for bed. I said goodnight to my gf and she did too so I went to sleep.
In the morning, I asked if I could give her a call and she was awake and ready. I called her and wished her another happy birthday and asked her what she got, did you enjoy your day? How was it? Etc. She told me it wasn't the best because she was just so busy with her uni stuff which I showed empathy towards. After she came back from medical school the next day, I surprised her with her present i had been waiting ai long to give, she opened it up and she was over the moon. She loved it so much and I'm so happy i got her it for her birthday.
A month later she was upset with me over some things and she brought up her birthday. One night, she face-timed me saying that i didn't call her on her birthday and was so upset by it. She used it as another reason to break up with me. She said that she feels like i don't care about her or the relationship and broke up with me that night. I am devastated by this. My heart has been torn into a million pieces never to be put back together. After some thinking, i wanted to see how you all feel about this situation? I was at my great grandmas funeral all day, she was busy, should I have called her? I called her the next morning am i being the asshole?
I could talk to you all about the other reasons she decided to break up but I can make a second list about it if you would all like.
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2023.05.29 04:03 nahimavegan (Selling) Huge list of 1100+ movies! Lots of New and Rare titles!
Prices are firm, but I take off $.75 for every $10 spent (multiple items)
I accept PayPal, Venmo, & Cashapp
Codes are always split/dual portion where applicable, & have no DMI
Only redeem portion you pay for
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House Next Door Meet Blacks 2 4K/VU $5.5
House of 1000 Corpses HD/VU $4
House w/ a Clock in Its Walls HD/MA $4
Hulk (2003) HD/MA $4
Humans HD/VU $4.5
Hunt for Red October 4K/VU $5.5
Hurt Locker 4K/VU $5
Hustle & Flow HD/VU $4
I Frankenstein HD/VU or IT $2.5
I Love You Phillip Morris HD/VU $4.5
Ice Age Collision Course HD/MA $3
In Blood HD/MA $4
In Secret (2014) HD/VU $4.5
Incredible Hulk HD/MA $4
Independence Day (1996) 4K/MA $5.5
Indiana Jones & Raiders of Lost Ark HD/VU $4
Infinite HD/VU $4.5
Inglourious Basterds HD/MA $4 or SD/IT $1.5
Inhabitant HD/VU $4.5
Interview w/ Vampire HD/MA $4
Iron Man & Hulk Heroes United HD/GP $3.5
Iron Mask (2019) HD/VU $4.5
Isle of Dogs HD/MA $4
It Happened One Night 4K/MA $5.5
Italian Job 4K/VU $6.5
Jack Reacher Never Go Back HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Jeff Who Lives at Home HD/VU $4
Jobs HD/MA or IT $3.5
Joe Kidd HD/MA or IT $4
Jordan Peele 3-Film Collection (Nope, Us, Get Out) HD/MA $11
Journey to West Conquering Demons HD/VU $3.5
Joy HD/MA $3
Juliet, Naked 4K/VU $5.5
Jungle Book (2016) 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/GP $2.5
Ju-On Grudge HD/VU $4.5
Jurassic Park 3 HD/VU $3.5
Jurassic World 6-Film Collection (Dominion Thea & Ext) HD/MA $18
Jurassic World Dominion (Thea & Ext) HD/MA $5
Kama Sutra HD/VU $4.5
Kid Who Would Be King 4K/MA $5.5 or HD/MA $4
Kill Zone (2005) HD/VU $4.5
King Richard 4K/MA $5.5
King's Man 4K/MA $5.5 or HD/GP $3.5
Knives Out 4K/VU $5.5
Knock at Cabin HD/MA $8
Knowing 4K/VU $5.5 or HD/VU $4
Knowing/Push Double Feature HD/VU $7.5
Labyrinth HD/MA $4.5
Lady & Tramp HD/MA $4.5 or HD/GP $4
Lair of White Worm HD/VU $4.5
Last Christmas HD/MA $4
Last Duel HD/GP $3.5
Last Flag Flying HD/MA $4
Last Picture Show 4K/MA $5.5
Last Samurai HD/MA $4
Legend of Hercules 4K/IT $3
Let Them All Talk 4K/MA $5.5
Lightyear HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Lilo & Stitch HD/MA $4.5 or HD/GP $4
Limey 4K/VU $5.5
Lion King HD/GP $3
Locked Down 4K/MA $5.5
Lyle Lyle Crocodile HD/MA $5
M3GAN (Thea & Unrated) HD/MA $7.5
Mack & Rita HD/VU $4.5
Mad Max 1-4 Set 4K/VU $18.5
Mad Max 2 Road Warrior 4K/VU $5.5
Mad Men Complete Series HD/VU $35
Magic Mike's Last Dance HD/MA $7
Magnificent Seven 4-Film Set (1960, Return, Guns, Ride) HD/VU $13
Man of Tai Chi HD/VU $4
Man Who Fell To Earth 4K/VU $6
Manchester by Sea HD/IT $3.5
Marksman HD/MA $4
Marlowe HD/MA $7.5
Mask of Zorro 4K/MA $6
Mask of Zorro 4K/MA $6
Mauritanian 4K/IT $5
Maze Runner Death Cure HD/MA $3.5
Maze Runner HD/MA $3.5
Meatballs HD/VU $4
Memory HD/MA $4
Men HD/VU $4.5
Men in Black 3 HD/MA $3
Men in Black HD/MA $4
Menu HD/MA $4.5 or HD/GP $4
Mickey & Minnie 10 Classic Shorts HD/MA $5.5 or HD/GP $5
Mid-Century 4K/VU $5
Midsommar HD/VU $4
Miracle on 34th Street (1947) HD/MA $4
Missing Link HD/MA $4
Missing SD/MA $4
Mission Impossible 3 4K/VU $4.5
Mitchells vs Machines HD/MA $4.5
Mommy HD/VU $4
Monster High Electrified HD/VU or IT $2.5
Moonfall 4K/VU $4.5
Morbius HD/MA $4
Mother's Day HD/IT $2.5
Moving On HD/VU $5.5
Mrs Harris Goes to Paris 4K/MA $6
My Brilliant Friend Season 1 HD/VU $4
My Fair Lady 4K/VU $5.5
Nashville HD/VU $4
Needle in a Timestack 4K/VU $5.5
Night House HD/GP $4
No Sudden Move 4K/MA $6
Nope HD/MA $5.5
Northman HD/MA $4
Oliver! 4K/MA $5
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood HD/MA $3.5
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood HD/MA $4
Paradise Highway 4K/VU $5.5
Paranormal Activity 1-8 Collection HD/VU $22
Paranormal Activity Ghost Dimension (Unrated) HD/VU $4.5
Paul Blart Mall Cop 2 HD/MA $3.5
Paw Patrol Movie HD/VU $4.5
Percy Jackon Lightning Thief SD/IT $1.5
Percy Jackson Sea of Monsters HD/MA $3
Perfectos Desconocidos HD/VU $4
Peter Pan (1953) HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
Peter Rabbit HD/MA $3.5
Phantom Thread HD/MA $4
Piano HD/VU $4.5
Pitch Black (Unrated) HD/MA or IT $4
Plane 4K/VU $6.5
Pocahontas 2 Journey to a New World HD/GP $3.5
Pompeii HD/MA $3.5
Pretty in Pink HD/VU $3.5
Prey for Devil 4K/VU $6
Prince of Egypt HD/MA $4.5
Protege HD/VU $4
Proud Mary HD/MA $3.5
Pulp Fiction 4K/VU $5.5
Pulp Fiction 4K/VU $5.5
Push 4K/VU $6
Puss in Boots Last Wish HD/MA $6.5
Queen of Katwe HD/MA $3 or HD/GP $2.5
Raid Redemption (Thea & Unrated) HD/MA $4.5
Ran (1985) 4K/VU $5.5
Ratatouille 4K/MA $6 or HD/GP $4
Rear Window HD/MA $3.5
RED 2 HD/VU or IT $2
Red Heat 4K/VU $5
Redline HD/VU $4.5
Reign of Assassins HD/VU $4.5
Repo Genetic Opera HD/VU $4.5
Rescuers Down Under HD/MA $5 or HD/GP $4.5
Rescuers HD/MA $5 or HD/GP $4.5
Reservoir Dogs 4K/VU $5.5 or HD/VU $4
Resident Evil Retribution 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5
Retaliation (2017) HD/VU $4
Ride Like a Girl HD/VU $4
Right One 4K/VU $5.5
Ring HD/VU $4.5
Rio 2 HD/MA $3
Rio SD/IT $1.5
Rocky Knockout Collection 1-4 (Rocky IV w/ Thea & Rocky vs Drago Ultimate Cut) 4K/VU $20
Rules of Attraction HD/VU $4
Rumble HD/VU $5
Running Man 4K/VU $5.5
Safe Haven SD/IT $1.5
Saint Maud HD/VU $4.5
Sausage Party HD/MA $3.5
Saw 7-Film Collection (Unrated) HD/VU $18
Saw 8-Film Collection HD/VU $20
Scott Pilgrim vs World 4K/MA $5.5
Scream 4 HD/VU $4
Scream HD/VU $4.5
Secret Garden (2020) 4K/IT $5
Secret in Their Eyes HD/VU or IT $3
Sense & Sensibility 4K/MA $5
Sex & City 2 SD/IT $1.5
Sex Tape HD/MA $3.5
Shaun of Dead HD/MA $4 or 4K/IT $4.5
Shawshank Redemption 4K/MA $5.5
Shazam! Fury of Gods HD/MA $10
She Said HD/MA $6.5
Shooter 4K/VU $5
Show Dogs HD/MA $3.5
Siberia (2018) HD/VU $3
Silent Night, Deadly Night 3-Film Set (3-5) HD/VU $8
Silent Twins 4K/MA $6
Silk Road 4K/VU $5
Sing 2 HD/MA $4
Sing Street HD/VU $4
Sixteen Candles HD/MA $4
Skeleton Twins HD/VU $4.5
Smile HD/VU $5.5
Smokey & Bandit HD/MA $3.5
Smokin' Aces 4K/MA $5.5
Smurfs Lost Village HD/MA $3.5
Snake Eyes G.I. Joe Origins 4K/VU $5.5 or HD/VU $4
Snatch 4K/MA $5.5
Social Network 4K/MA $5.5
Son of God HD/MA $3
Source Code 4K/VU $5.5
Spartacus HD/MA $3.5
Spider-Man Into Spider-Verse 4K/MA $5.5
Spider-Man No Way Home HD/MA $4
Spinning Man HD/VU $4
Spirit HD/VU $4
Spontaneous HD/VU $4.5
Starship Troopers 4K/MA $6
Sting 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5
Strange World HD/GP $4
Strangers Prey at Night HD/MA $3
Stripes 4K/MA $5
Sudden Death HD/IT $4
Taken 2 HD/MA $3.5
Tangled HD/MA $4
Tar HD/MA $6
Taxi Driver HD/MA $4
Teen Spirit (2019) HD/MA $4
Teen Titans Go! & DC Super Hero Girls Mayhem Multiverse HD/MA $6
Teeth HD/VU $4.5
Ten Commandments (1923) HD/VU $4
Ten Commandments (1956) HD/VU $4
Tetro HD/VU $4
Thanks for Sharing HD/VU $4
The Batman HD/MA $4
This is End HD/MA $3.5
This Means War SD/IT $1.5
Thor Love & Thunder 4K/MA $5.5 or HD/GP $3.5
Till 4K/IT $7
Time Freak HD/VU $4
To Kill a Mockingbird 4K/IT $4
To Sir w/ Love 4K/MA $5.5
Tomb Raider Cradle of Life 4K/VU or IT $5.5
Top Gun Maverick 4K/VU $6 or HD/VU $4.5
Touched w/ Fire HD/VU $4.5
Town SD/IT $1.5
Trading Places HD/VU $4
Transformers 4K/VU $5
Transformers Age of Extinction HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Transformers Dark of Moon 4K/VU $4.5
Transformers Revenge of Fallen 4K/VU $5
Triple 9 HD/IT $3.5
Troy (Director's Cut) HD/MA $4.5
True Grit SD/IT $1.5
Tucker Man & His Dream 4K/VU $5
Turning Red HD/GP $3
Twilight 1-3 (Ext) HD/VU $10
Twilight Breaking Dawn Pt 1 HD/VU $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
Twilight HD/VU $4
Umma HD/MA $4.5
Uncharted HD/MA $4
Uncut Gems HD/VU $4
Under Skin HD/VU $3.5
Underwater HD/MA $4.5
Underworld 5-Film Set HD/MA $17
Venom Let There Be Carnage HD/MA $4
Virtuoso 4K/VU $5
Vivo HD/MA $5
Voyagars 4K/VU $5
W. HD/VU $4
Wall Street Money Never Sleeps SD/IT $1.5
War of Worlds 4K/VU $5.5
War on Everyone HD/VU $4
Warhunt 4K/VU $4.5
Waterworld HD/MA $4
Wayne's World 4K/VU $5.5
Weekend HD/VU $4
What We Did on our Holiday HD/VU $4
Where Crawdads Sing HD/MA $4.5
Whitney Houston I Wanna Dance w/ Sombody HD/MA $5.5 or SD/MA $3
Wicker Man (1973) HD/VU $4.5
Winnie Pooh Springtime w/ Roo HD/MA $4.5 or HD/GP $4
Wolf Man (1941) HD/MA $3.5
Woman King HD/MA $5.5
Women Talking 4K/IT $7
X-Men Days of Future Past Rogue Cut 4K/IT $5.5
X-Men First Class & Days of Future Past HD/MA $6.5
X-Men Trilogy (X-Men, X2, Last Stand) HD/MA $12
Zero Dark Thirty HD/MA $3.5
All other movies (A-Z)
101 Dalmatians HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
12 Years a Slave HD/MA $3.5
13 Hours Soldiers of Benghazi HD/VU $2.5
1917 HD/MA $3.5
2 Fast 2 Furious 4K/IT $3.5
2 Guns HD/VU or IT $2.5
21 Jump Street HD/MA $3
3 From Hell (Unrated) 4K/VU $4 or HD/VU $2.5
31 HD/VU $2.5
310 to Yuma 4K/VU $5
47 Meters Down HD/IT $3.5
47 Meters Down Uncaged HD/VU $3.5
47 Ronin HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
71 HD/VU $4
A Clockwork Orange 4K/MA $5
A Most Wanted Man HD/VU $3.5
A Quiet Place HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
A Quiet Place Part 2 4K/VU $5.5 or HD/VU $4
A Wrinkle in Time HD/MA $3 or HD/GP $2.5
About Time HD/VU or IT $3.5
Action Point HD/IT $2
Adore HD/IT $3.5
Adventures Of TinTin HD/VU or IT $2.5
After Earth HD/MA $3
Aladdin (2019) 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/MA $3 or HD/GP $2.5
Alex Cross HD/VU or IT $2
Alfred Hitchcock 5-Film Set Vol 2 4K/MA $24
Alice Through Looking Glass HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Alita Battle Angel 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5
All Eyez on Me HD/IT $3
All Money in World HD/MA $3.5
Aloha HD/MA $3.5 or SD/MA $1
Alvin & Chipmunks Road Chip HD/MA $2.5
Amazing Spider-Man 2 HD/MA $4
Amazing Spider-Man HD/MA $3.5 or SD/MA $1.5
America Imagine World w/out Her HD/VU $1.5
American Assassin 4K/VU $4.5 or HD/VU $3
American Frontier Trilogy (Sicario, Wind River, Hell or High Water) HD/VU $7.5
American Hustle SD/MA $1.5
American Made 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5
American Night HD/VU $4
American Reunion HD/VU or IT $3
American Ultra HD/IT $4
Anchorman 2 Legend Continues HD/VU or IT $2.5
Angel Heart 4K/VU $5.5
Angel of Mine 4K/VU $5.5
Anna 4K/VU $5 HD/VU $3.5
Anna Karenina HD/IT $3.5
Annie (2014) HD/MA $3.5 or SD/MA $1.5
Annihilation HD/VU $3
Antebellum 4K/VU $5
Ant-Man & Wasp HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Ant-Man HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
Apollo 13 4K/MA or IT $5 or HD/MA $3.5
Arctic HD/MA $4
Arnold Schwarzenegger 6-Film Collection (Last Stand, Total Recall, T-2, Red Heat, Maggie, Hercules in NY) HD/VU $14
Arrival HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Ash vs Evil Dead Season 3 HD/VU $5
Assassination Nation HD/MA $3.5
Assassin's Creed HD/MA $3
Atomic Blonde 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/MA$3
August Osage County HD/VU $3
Avengers Age of Ultron HD/MA $3.5 pr HD/GP $3
Avengers Endgame HD/MA $2.5 or HD/GP $2
Avengers HD/GP $3
Avengers Infinity War HD/MA $2.5 or HD/GP $2
Back to Future Trilogy 4K/MA $14 or HD/MA $9.5
Bad Boys for Life HD/MA $4
Bad Grandpa HD/IT $2.5
Bad Words HD/IT $3
Bambi HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
Bangkok Dangerous HD/VU $4
Bank Job HD/VU $3.5
Barbie & Her Sisters in Great Puppy Adventure HD/VU or IT $3.5
Barbie in Princess Power HD/IT $3.5
Barbie Star Light Adventure HD/IT $3.5
Battle of Year HD/MA $3.5
Battleship HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Baywatch HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Beatriz at Dinner HD/VU $4.5
Beauty & Beast (1991) HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Beauty & Beast (2017) HD/MA $2.5 or HD/GP $2
Before I Fall HD/VU or IT $3.5
Begin Again HD/VU $3.5
Ben-Hur (2016) HD/VU or IT $3.5
BFG HD/MA $3.5
Big Eyes HD/VU $3.5
Big Hero 6 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Big Lebowski 4K/MA $5.5 or HD/MA $4
Big Little Lies Season 1 HD/GP $2.5
Big Short HD/VU or IT $3.5
Big Wedding SD/IT $1
Birth of a Nation HD/MA $3.5
Black Panther 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/GP $2.5
Black Widow HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Blackhat HD/IT $3.5
Blair Witch Project (1999) HD/VU $4
Blockers HD/MA $3.5
Boardwalk Empire Season 1 HD/VU or IT $4
Bombshell 4K/VU $5
Book Club HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Book of Life HD/MA $3.5
Born a Champion 4K/VU $5
Boss Baby HD/MA $2.5
Bourne Identity HD/VU $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
Bourne Legacy HD/VU $2
Bourne Supremacy HD/VU $3.5
Bourne Ultimatum 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
Boy 2 HD/IT $3.5
Boy Erased HD/MA $4
Boy HD/IT $3.5
Boyhood HD/VU or IT $2.5
Braven HD/VU $4
Butler HD/VU $3
Butterfly Effect HD/MA $4
Bye Bye Man (Unrated) HD/IT $2.5
Cabin in Woods 4K/VU or IT $4.5 or HD/VU $2.5
Call of Wild 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/GP $2.5
Captain America Civil War HD/GP $2.5
Captain America First Avenger HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5 or SD/IT $1.5
Captain America Winter Soldier HD/GP $3.5
Captain Marvel HD/GP $2
Captain Phillips HD/MA $3.5 or SD/MA $1.5
Carol HD/VU $4
Cars 3 HD/GP $2.5
Case for Christ HD/IT $2.5
Chaos Walking 4K/VU $5
Chicago HD/VU $4
Children (2008) HD/VU $4
Christopher Robin HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
Cloverfield 4K/VU $5.5 or HD/VU $4
Coco HD/GP $2.5
Cold Pursuit 4K/VU $5 or HD/VU $3.5
Collection HD/VU $3.5
Columbiana (Unrated) HD/MA $4
Come & Find Me HD/VU $4
Commuter 4K/VU $5 or HD/VU $3.5
Company of Heroes HD/MA $4
Contraband HD/IT $3
Cooties HD/VU $4
Cornetto Trilogy (Shaun of Dead, Hot Fuzz, World's End) 4K/MA $15
Counselor HD/MA $4
Courier 4K/VU $5.5 or HD/VU $4
Crank 4K/VU $5.5
Crimson Peak HD/IT $3.5
Croods HD/VU $3.5
Cruella HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
D Train 4K/IT $4
Daddy's Home 2 HD/IT $3
Daddy's Home HD/VU $3
Dark Tower HD/MA $3.5
Darkest Hour (2017) 4K/MA $5.5
Darkness HD/IT $3
Dawn of Planet of Apes HD/MA $3.5
Daybreakers 4K/VU $5.5
Deadpool 2 (w/Super Duper Cut) HD/MA $4
Deadpool HD/MA $2.5
Dear White People HD/VU $3.5
Dementia 13 (Director's Cut) HD/VU $4
Descendants SD/IT $1.5
Despicable Me 2 HD/VU $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
Despicable Me 4K/IT $5 or SD/IT $1.5
Detroit HD/MA $3.5
Dilemma HD/VU $3.5 or SD/IT $1.5
Dirty Dancing 4K/VU $5 or HD/VU $3.5
Disney Animated Short Films Collection HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Divergent Allegiant HD/VU $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
Divergent HD/VU $1.5 or 4K/IT $2 or SD/VU $0.5
Divergent Insurgent HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Django Unchained HD/VU $3 or SD/IT $1.5
Do Right Thing 4K/MA $5.5 or HD/MA $4
Doctor Strange HD/GP $2.5
Dom Hemingway HD/MA $3.5
Don't Worry, He Won't Get Far on Foot HD/VU $4
Doom (Unrated) 4K/MA $5.5
Doorman HD/VU $3.5
Doors 4K/VU $5.5 or HD/VU $4
Dora & Lost City of Gold HD/VU $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
Downton Abbey Movie HD/MA $4
Dracula Untold HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Draft Day HD/VU $3.5
Dragged Across Concrete HD/VU $3.5
Dreamkatcher HD/VU $4
Dredd HD/VU $2.5
Duff SD/VU $1.5
Dumbo (2019) HD/GP $3
Dune 4K/MA $5.5
Dying of Light HD/VU $2.5
E.T. Extra Terrestrial 4K/VU or IT $5 or HD/MA $3.5
Edge of Seventeen HD/VU or IT $3
Edge of Tomorrow 4K/MA $5
Edward Scissorhands HD/MA $3.5
El Chicano HD/MA $4
Encanto 4K/MA $4 or 4K/GP $3.5
Enemy at Gates HD/VU $4
Enough Said HD/MA $3.5
Epic HD/MA $3
Escape Plan HD/VU $2
Eternals HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Everest 4K/MA or IT $4.5
Ex Machina HD/VU $3
Exodus Gods & Kings HD/MA $3.5
Expendables 2 HD/VU or IT $1
Expendables 3 (Thea) HD/VU $2 or 4K/IT $2.5
Extreme Prejudice (1987) HD/VU $4
Fast & Furious (2009) HD/VU $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
Fast & Furious 6 (Ext) HD/VU $2 or 4K/IT $2.5
Fast & Furious 6-film Collection HD/VU $12.5
Fast & Furious 7-film Collection HD/VU $14
Fast & Furious 8-film Collection (9 Films) HD/MA $17.5
Fast & Furious 9-film Collection (11 Films) HD/MA $20
Fast & Furious HD/VU $3.5
Fast Color 4K/VU $5.5
Fast Five (Ext) HD/IT $2.5 or SD/IT $1
Fatale 4K/VU $5 or HD/VU $3.5
Fate of Furious (Ext) HD/VU $2
Fate of Furious (Thea) HD/VU or IT $1.5
Fault in Our Stars HD/MA $3.5
Fences HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Ferdinand HD/MA $3.5
Fifty Shades Darker (Unrated) HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Fifty Shades of Grey (Unrated) HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Finding Dory HD/MA $2.5 or HD/GP $2
Finding Nemo HD/GP $3.5
Finest Hours HD/GP $3
First Blood 4K/VU $5
First Man HD/MA $4
Flight HD/VU or IT $3
Florence Foster Jenkins HD/VU or IT $3
Footloose (2011) HD/IT $3
Forever My Girl HD/IT $3
Fortress HD/VU $4
Four Kids & It HD/VU $3.5
Fox & Hound 2 HD/MA $4
Frank & Lola HD/VU or IT $3
Frankenstein (1931) HD/VU $3.5
Free Guy HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
French Dispatch HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
Friday 13th Pt 3 HD/VU $3.5
Frozen (Sing-Along Edition) HD/MA $2 or HD/GP $1.5
Frozen 2 4K/MA $4 or HD/MA $2.5 or HD/GP $2
Frozen Ground HD/VU $3.5
Frozen HD/GP $2
Furious 7 (Ext) HD/VU $2 or 4K/IT $2.5
Fury HD/MA $3.5
G.I. Joe Retaliation HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Gambit (2012) HD/MA $4
Gambler HD/IT $3
Gambler HD/VU $3
Gemini Man 4K/VU or IT $4.5 or HD/VU $3
Get Out HD/MA $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
Ghostbusters (1984) HD/MA $3.5
Ghostbusters 2 HD/MA $3.5
Ghostbusters Afterlife HD/MA $4
Girl on Train HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Girl w/ All Gifts HD/VU $4
Girls Trip HD/VU or IT $2
Glass Castle 4K/VU $5.5
God's Not Dead 2 HD/MA or IT $2.5
Gods of Egypt HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Gold (2016) HD/VU or IT $2.5
Good Dinosaur HD/MA $3 or HD/GP $2.5
Good Kill HD/VU or IT $3.5
Grace Unplugged HD/VU $2
Greatest Showman HD/MA $3.5
Green Mile 4K/MA $5.5
Grey HD/VU or IT $3
Guardians of Galaxy Vol 1 HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Guardians of Galaxy Vol 2 HD/MA $2.5 or HD/GP $2
Guest House 4K/VU $5
Guilt Trip HD/IT $3
Gunman HD/MA $3
Hacksaw Ridge HD/VU $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
Hail, Caesar! HD/IT $3
Hammer of Gods HD/VU $2
Hands of Stone HD/VU $3.5
Hannibal Season 1 HD/VU $5
Hansel & Gretel Witch Hunters (Unrated) 4K/IT $4
Hard Target 2 HD/IT $1.5
Hardcore Henry HD/VU or IT $3.5
Hateful Eight HD/VU $3.5
Heat HD/MA $3
Heaven is for Real SD/MA $1.5
Hell Fest 4K/VU $5
Hell or High Water HD/VU $2.5
Hellboy (2019) HD/VU $3 or 4K/VU $4.5
Hercules (1997) HD/MA $4.5 or HD/GP $4
Hercules (2014) HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Here Comes Boom HD/MA $3.5
Hidden Figures HD/MA $3
Hillsong Let Hope Rise HD/IT $2
Hitman's Bodyguard HD/VU $3.5
Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard 4K/VU $5.5 or HD/VU $4
Hocus Pocus HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Home Alone HD/MA $3.5
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Honey 2 HD/VU $3
Hop HD/MA or IT $3
Hope Springs HD/MA $2.5 or SD/MA $1
Hostiles HD/VU $3
Hot Fuzz HD/VU $4
Hotel Mumbai HD/MA $4
Hours (2013) HD/VU $4
How Grinch Stole Christmas (2000) 4K/IT $4
How to Train Your Dragon 2 HD/MA $2.5
How to Train Your Dragon HD/VU $3.5
How to Train Your Dragon Trilogy HD/MA $9
Hugo HD/VU or IT $3
Hunger Games 4-Film Collection HD/VU $8
Hunger Games Catching Fire HD/VU $1.5 or 4K/IT $2 or SD/VU $.5
Hunger Games HD/VU $1.5 or 4K/IT $2 or SD/VU $.0.5
Hunger Games Mockingjay Part 1 HD/VU $2.5 or SD/VU $1
Hunter Killer 4K/VU $4.5 or HD/VU $3
Huntsman Winter's War (Ext) HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
I Can Only Imagine HD/VU $4
I Feel Pretty HD/IT $2
Incredibles 2 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Incredibles HD/GP $3.5
Independence Day Resurgence HD/MA $2.5
Indiana Jones & Temple of Doom 4K/VU $5.5
Indignation HD/VU $4
Initiation 4K/VU $5 or HD/VU $3.5
Inside Out HD/GP $2
Instant Family 4K/IT $3.5
Internship SD/IT $1.5
Interstellar HD/VU $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
Into Woods HD/MA $3 or HD/GP $2.5
Invisible Man (1933) HD/MA $3.5
Invisible Man (2020) 4K/MA $5.5 or HD/MA $4
Iron Man 3 HD/GP $2
Iron Man HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
It Follows HD/VU $3.5
It's a Wonderful Life 4K/VU or IT $4.5 or HD/VU $3
Jack & Jill HD/MA $3.5
Jack Reacher HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $4.5
Jack Ryan Shadow Recruit HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Jacob's Ladder HD/VU $4
Jarhead 3 Siege (Unrated) HD/IT $2.5
Jason Bourne HD/VU $2.5
Jason Statham 4-Film HD/VU $10
Jason Statham 6-Film HD/VU $14
Jaws 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5
Jersey Boys HD/MA $2.5
Jesus Music HD/VU $3.5
Jigsaw 4K/VU $4.5
Joe HD/VU $3.5
John Wick 1 & 2 Bundle HD/VU $4
John Wick 3 Parabellum 4K/VU $4.5
John Wick Chapter 2 HD/VU $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
John Wick HD/VU $2 or 4K/IT $2.5
John Wick Trilogy (Parabellum 4K) HD/VU $9
Jonah Hex HD/MA $4.5
Judy 4K/VU $5
Jungle Cruise HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
Jurassic Park 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5
Jurassic World 5-Film Collection HD/MA $14
Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/MA $3
Jurassic World HD/VU $2.5
Justice (2017) HD/VU or IT $3
Justin Bieber Never Say Never SD/IT $1.5
Kevin Hart Let Me Explain HD/VU or IT $3
Kick-Ass 4K/VU $5.5 or HD/VU $4 or SD/IT $1.5
Kidnap HD/VU or IT $2.5
Killer Elite HD/IT $3
Killerman HD/VU $4
Kin 4K/VU $4.5 or HD/VU $3
King Kong (2005) 4K/MA or IT $5 or HD/MA $3.5
Kingsman Golden Circle 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/MA $3
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Kiss Kiss Bang Bang HD/MA $4.5
Knick Season 1 HD/IT $3.5
Knick Season 2 HD/IT or GP $3.5
Kung Fu Panda 3 HD/MA $3
La La Land 4K/IT $3.5
Labor Day HD/VU or IT $3
Lady Macbeth HD/VU $4.5
Last Airbender HD/VU $4.5
Last Exorcism HD/VU $4
Last Knights HD/VU $3.5 or SD/VU $1.5
Last Man (2019) HD/VU $4
Last Stand HD/IT $2
Last Vegas HD/MA $3.5
Last Witch Hunter HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Leatherface HD/VU $4
Leprechaun 7-Film Collection HD/VU $12
Les Miserables (2012) HD/VU or IT $2
Let Me Explain HD/IT $2.5
Let's be Cops HD/MA $3.5
Life (2017) HD/MA $3.5
Life of Crime HD/VU $3.5
Life of Pi 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA or IT $3.5
Light of My Life HD/IT $3.5
Like a Boss HD/VU $3.5
Lilo & Stitch 2 Stitch Has a Glitch HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
Lincoln Lawyer 4K/VU $6.5 or HD/VU $4
Lion King (2019) 4K/MA $4 or HD/GP $2
Live by Night HD/MA $3
Logan HD/MA $3
Logan Lucky 4K/MA or IT $4.5
Lone Ranger HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Lone Survivor HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Long Shot HD/VU $3.5
Longest Ride HD/MA $3
Longest Week HD/VU $3.5
Looper HD/MA $3.5
Lorax (1972) HD/MA $5
Lorax HD/VU $3
Lords of Salem HD/VU $4
Lost World Jurassic Park HD/MA $3
Love & Monsters HD/VU $4
Love Coopers HD/VU or IT $4
Love, Simon HD/MA $3.5
Loving HD/VU or IT $3.5
Luca HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Lucy HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Madagascar 3 HD/VU or IT $3
Madea's Witness Protection SD/IT $1.5
Magnificent Seven (2016) HD/VU $3
Maleficent 4K/MA $4 or HD/MA $2.5 or HD/GP $2
Maleficent Mistress of Evil HD/MA $3 or HD/GP $2.5
Mama HD/IT $3
Mamma Mia Here We Go Again HD/MA $2.5
Man Who Shot Liberty Vance 4K/VU $5.5
Mandela Long Walk to Freedom HD/VU $4
Martian HD/MA $3.5
Mary Poppins (1964) HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Mary Poppins Returns HD/MA $3 or HD/GP $2.5
Matrix Resurrections 4K/MA $5.5
Max Steel HD/IT $3
McKenna Shoots for Stars HD/IT $2
Mechanic Resurrection HD/VU $2.5
Megan Leavey HD/IT $3
Midnight Sun HD/MA $3.5
Midway 4K/VU $4.5 or HD/VU $3
Mile 22 HD/IT $3
Million Dollar Arm HD/GP $2.5
MindGamers HD/MA or IT $3.5
Minions 4K/MA or IT $4.5 HD/VU $3
Misconduct HD/VU $2.5
Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children HD/MA $3
Mission Impossible 4 Ghost Protocol HD/VU $2
Mission Impossible 5 Rogue Nation HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Mission Impossible 6 Fallout 4K/VU or IT $4.5
Mission Impossible 6-film Set 4K/VU or IT $23 or HD/VU $17
Moana HD/MA $2.5 or HD/GP $2
Moneyball HD/MA $3
Monkey Kingdom HD/MA $3
Monsters University HD/GP $3
Monuments Men HD/MA $3.5
Mortal Engines 4K/MA $5.5 or HD/MA $4
Mortal HD/VU $4
Mortal Instruments City of Bones HD/MA $3 or SD/MA $1.5
Mother! HD/VU $2.5
Mr. Poppers Penguins SD/IT $1.5
Much Ado About Nothing (2013) HD/VU $4
Mud HD/VU $2.5
Mulan (2020) 4K/MA 4.5 or HD/MA $3 or HD/GP $2.5
Mummy (1999) HD/VU $4
Mummy (2017) 4K/MA or IT $4.5
Muppets Most Wanted HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Murder on Orient Express HD/MA $3.5
My All American HD/MA or IT $3.5
Nebraska HD/VU $3
Nerve HD/IT $3.5
NeverEnding Story HD/MA $4
New Mutants HD/GP $3
News of World 4K/MA $5.5 or HD/MA $4
Night at Museum Secret of Tomb HD/MA $3
Nightmare Alley 4K/MA $5.5 or HD/GP $3.5
Nightmare Before Christmas HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
No Escape (2015) HD/VU $3
No Strings Attached HD/VU or IT $4
No Time to Die 4K/IT $4.5
Noah HD/VU or IT $2.5
Nobody's Fool HD/IT $2.5
Non-Stop HD/VU or IT $3
Norm of North HD/VU $2.5
Nostalgia (2018) HD/MA $3.5
Now You See Me 2 HD/VU $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
Now You See Me HD/VU or IT $2.5 or SD/VU $1
Nutcracker & Four Realms HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Oblivion 4K/MA or IT $5 or HD/MA $3.5
Occupation (2018) HD/VU $3.5
Occupation Rainfall HD/VU $4
Office Christmas Party HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Olaf's Frozen Adventure HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
One Direction This is Us SD/MA $1.5
Ong Bak 2 HD/VU $3
Onward 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/GP $2.5
Other Woman HD/MA $3
Ouija HD/IT $3.5
Ouija Origin of Evil HD/VU or IT $3.5
Outlander Season 1 Vol 1 HD/VU $5.5
Overdrive HD/IT $2.5
Overlord 4K/IT $3.5
Oz Great & Powerful HD/GP $2.5
Paddington HD/VU $3.5
Pain & Gain HD/VU or IT $3.5
Paranormal Activity (Unrated) HD/VU or IT $4
Paranormal Activity 3 (Ext) HD/VU or IT $3
Paranormal Activity 4 HD/IT $2.5
Paranormal Activity Marked Ones HD/VU or IT $3.5
Passengers HD/MA $3
Patriot Games 4K/VU $5
Patriot's Day HD/VU $3
Peanuts Movie HD/MA $3
Penguins of Madagascar HD/MA $3.5
Perks of Being a Wallflower SD/VU or IT $1
Pet Sematary (2019) 4K/IT $3.5
Pete's Dragon (2016) HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Philomena HD/VU $2.5
Pinocchio (1940) HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Pirates of Caribbean 5 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/GP $2.5
Pitch Perfect 2 4K/MA $4 or HD/VU $2.5
Pitch Perfect 4K/IT $3
Pixar Short Films Collection Vol. 3 HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Planes Fire & Rescue HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Planes HD/MA $2.5 or HD/GP $2
Playing w/ Fire HD/IT $2.5
Pocahontas HD/MA $4.5 or HD/GP $4
Point Break (2015) 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5
Poison Rose 4K/VU $4.5
Possession HD/VU or IT $2.5
Power Rangers (2017) 4K/VU or IT $4.5
Precious HD/VU $4.5
Predator (2018) HD/MA $3
Predator 4-Film Collection HD/MA $11
Premium Rush HD/MA $3.5
Pride & Prejudice & Zombies SD/MA $1.5
Primal HD/VU $3.5
Prodigy HD/VU $4
Project Almanac HD/IT $3.5
Prometheus HD/MA $2.5
Protector 2 SD/VU $1.5
Punisher 4K/VU $5.5
Punisher War Zone 4K/VU $5.5
Purge Anarchy HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Purge Election Year 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5
Purge HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Quarry 4K/VU $5
Queen & Slim HD/MA $4
Ralph Breaks Internet HD/GP $2
Rambo (2008) 4K/VU $5.5
Rambo 3 4K/VU $5.5
Rambo 5-Film Collection 4K/VU $23 or HD/VU $17
Rambo First Blood Pt 2 4K/VU $5.5
Rambo Last Blood 4K/VU $4.5
Rango HD/VU $3.5
Raya & Last Dragon HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Reclaim HD/VU $3.5
Red Dawn (2012) HD/VU or IT $3
Red Sparrow HD/MA $3.5
Replicant (2001) HD/VU $3.5
Replicas HD/VU $3.5
Requiem for a Dream (Director's Cut) 4K/VU $5.5
Resurrection of Gavin Stone HD/VU or IT $2.5
Revenant HD/MA $3.5
Riddick (Unrated) HD/VU or IT $3
Ride Along HD/VU or IT $2.5
Rings HD/VU or IT $2.5
Riot HD/VU or IT $3
RIPD HD/IT $2.5
Risen HD/MA $3
Robin Hood (1973) HD/MA $3.5 or HD/VU $3
Robocop (2014) HD/VU $2.5
Rocketman (2019) 4K/IT $4
Rogue One A Star Wars Story HD/GP $2
Ron's Gone Wrong HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Rough Night 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5
Runner Runner HD/MA $3.5
Rush HD/VU or IT $3
Safe HD/VU or IT $2.5
Saige Paints Sky HD/IT $3
Same Kind of Different as Me HD/VU or IT $3
Samson HD/MA $3.5
Santa Clause 2 HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Santa Clause 3 HD/MA $3
Santa Clause HD/MA $3.5
Santa Clause Trilogy HD/MA $9.5 or HD/GP $8
Savages HD/IT $3
Saving Mr. Banks HD/GP $3
Saw HD/VU $3
Scarface HD/VU $4
Scary Movie 5 HD/VU $4.5
Scary Stories to Tell in Dark 4K/VU $4.5
Schindler's List 4K/MA $5.5
Scouts Guide to Zombie Apocalypse HD/IT $3
Scream (1996) HD/VU $4
Scrooged HD/IT $4
Secret Life of Pets 4K/IT $4.5
Secret Life of Walter Mitty HD/MA $3
Selma HD/VU or IT $2.5
Shack HD/IT $2.5
Shallows HD/MA $3.5
Shang-Chi Legend of Ten Rings HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Shape of Water HD/MA $3.5
Sharp Objects HD/GP $2
Shaun Sheep Movie HD/VU $3
Sherlock Gnomes HD/VU or IT $2.5
She's Having a Baby HD/VU $3.5
Shivers HD/VU $4
Siberia (2020) HD/VU $4
Sicario HD/VU $2.5
Side Effects HD/IT $3.5
Sing (2016) 4K/IT $4
Singing in Rain 4K/MA $5.5
Sinister HD/IT $2.5
Sisters (Unrated) HD/IT $2.5
Skyfall HD/VU $2.5
Skyscraper HD/MA $3.5
Sleeping Beauty (1959) HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
Sleepless HD/IT $2
Snatched HD/MA $2
Snitch HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3 or SD/VU or IT $1.5
Snow White & Huntsman (Ext Edition) 4K/VU or IT $4.5 or HD/VU $3
Snow White & Seven Dwarfs (1937) HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Solo A Star Wars Story HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Some Kind of Wonderful HD/VU $3.5
Songbird 4K/IT $4.5
Sonic Hedgehog 4K/VU $5 or HD/VU $3.5
Soul HD/MA $3 or HD/GP $2.5
Southpaw HD/VU $3
Southside w/ You HD/VU $4.5
Spider-Man 4-Cut Set (Spider-Man 2 w/ Thea & Ext) HD/MA $11.5
Spider-Man 5-Cut Set (Spider-Man 2 & 3 w/ Thea & Ext) HD/MA $14.5
Spider-Man Far From Home HD/MA $3.5
Spider-Man Homecoming HD/MA $3
Spider-Man Homecoming/Far From Home Bundle HD/MA $6
Spies in Disguise 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA $3.5 or HD/GP $3
Spiral (2021) 4K/VU or IT $4.5
Split 4K/MA or IT $5 or HD/MA $3.5
Spongebob Sponge out of Water HD/IT $2.5
Spy (Unrated) HD/MA $3.5
Spy Who Dumped Me 4K/VU $5 or HD/VU $3.5
St. Vincent HD/VU $3
Stand Up Guys HD/VU $3.5
Star SD/MA $1.5
Star Trek (2009) HD/VU $3.5 or 4K/IT $4
Star Trek 1-4 4K/VU $18
Star Trek Beyond HD/VU $3
Star Trek Into Darkness HD/VU $2.5
Star Wars Force Awakens HD/GP $1.5
Star Wars Last Jedi 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/MA $3 or HD/GP $2.5
Star Wars Rise of Skywalker 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/MA $3 or HD/GP $2.5
Step Up Revolution HD/IT $3
Straight Outta Compton (Thea & Unrated) 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/MA $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Suburbicon HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Suits Season 2 HD/IT $3.5
Sum of All Fears 4K/VU $5.5
Sundown Vampire in Retreat HD/VU $3.5
Super 8 4K/VU $5 or HD/VU $3.5
Super Buddies HD/GP $2
Sword in Stone HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
Ted (Unrated) HD/IT $3
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014) HD/VU $2.5
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Out of Shadows HD/VU $3.5
Terminator 2 Judgment Day (Ext) HD/VU $4.5
Terminator 2 Judgment Day 4K/VU $5
Terminator Dark Fate HD/VU $2.5 or 4K/IT $3
Terminator Genisys HD/VU $2.5
That Awkward Moment SD/MA $1.5
This is 40 HD/MA $3.5
Thor Dark World HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
Thor HD/GP $3.5 or SD/IT $1.5
Thor Ragnarok HD/GP $2
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri HD/MA $3.5
Top Gun (1986) 4K/VU $5 or HD/VU $3.5
Total Recall (1990) 4K/VU $5
Toy Story 4 4K/MA $4.5 or HD/MA $2.5 or HD/GP $2
Toy Story HD/GP $3.5
Toy Story of Terror HD/MA $4 or HD/GP $3.5
Transformers Last Knight HD/VU $2.5
Transporter 3 SD/IT $1.5
Tremors A Cold Day In Hell HD/MA $2.5
Trolls HD/MA $2.5
Trumbo HD/IT $3.5
Trust HD/VU $4
Turbo HD/MA or IT $3
Turning HD/MA $4
Twilight Breaking Dawn 2 HD/VU $1.5 or 4K/IT $2 or SD/VU $0.5
Tyler Perry's A Madea Christmas SD/VU $1.5
Tyler Perry's Madea's Witness Protection SD/VU $1
Tyler Perry's Temptation HD/GP $3
Unbreakable HD/GP $3.5
Unbroken HD/VU or IT $3
Uncle Drew HD/VU $3.5
Underworld Awakening HD/MA $3
Untouchables 4K/VU $5
Valerian & City of a Thousand Planets HD/VU $3.5
Vampire Academy HD/VU $4
Van Helsing HD/MA $3.5
Vanishing (2018) HD/VU $4
Veep Season 6 HD/IT $3.5
Venom HD/MA $3.5
Victoria & Abdul HD/MA $4
Vivarium HD/VU $4
Voices (2014) HD/VU $4
Vow SD/MA $1.5
Walk HD/MA $3.5
War for Planet of Apes HD/MA $3
Warcraft HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
Warm Bodies 4K/VU $4.5 or HD/VU $3 or SD/VU $1.5
Warrior 4K/VU $5 or HD/VU $3.5
Werewolf Beast Among Us (Unrated) HD/IT $3.5
West Side Story 4K/MA $5 or HD/MA 3.5 or HD/GP $3
What Men Want HD/VU $3 or 4K/IT $3.5
What to Expect When You're Expecting SD/IT $1.5
When Game Stands Tall HD/MA $3 or SD/MA $1.5
Whisky Tango Foxtrot HD/IT $3
Why Him? HD/MA $3
Widows HD/MA $3.5
Wild Card HD/VU $3
Wild HD/MA $3.5
Wilson HD/MA $3.5
Winchester HD/VU $3.5
Wolf of Wall Street HD/VU or IT $3.5
Wolverine (Unrated) (w/Thea) HD/MA $4
Wonder HD/VU $3
Wonder Park 4K/IT $2.5
Wonder Woman 1984 4K/MA $5.5
Woodlawn HD/IT $3.5
World War Z HD/VU or IT $2.5
Wraith HD/VU $4
X-Men Apocalypse HD/MA $3
X-Men Days of Future Past HD/MA $3
XXX Return of Xander Cage HD/VU $2 or 4K/IT $2.5
You Were Never Really Here HD/VU $4
You're Next HD/VU $3.5
Z for Zachariah HD/VU $4
Zeros & Ones HD/VU $4.5
Zootopia HD/GP $2.5
submitted by nahimavegan
to DigitalCodeSELL [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 03:26 Lemonloid He passed away at 22
TLDR: I just need to vent becuase I'm so heartbroken right now. I just want some support. My friend/ex died and before he died he told his other friend that he didn't ever love me.
My friend's celebration of life was a few hours ago and I can't stop crying. I loved him so much. We met eachother in kindergarten but weren't close until after high school. I grew up around him. He was just such an amazing, unique person but he really struggled with alcoholism. It was like I met the person of my dreams. When he was sober he was so charming, funny, intelligent, creative, passionate, energetic, and loving. We had such an intense connection and I've never had butterflies like that before. But I broke up with him only after a week of being official becuase he wasn't very reliable. He was blacking out, canceling plans to get drunk and then lying about how much he had been drinking. We took a break and then started being friends again and I would hear from him from time to time. I moved on to other relationships after that, but I still cared about him deeply as a friend. I just couldn't tolerate his alcoholism anymore as a girlfriend.
I had a dream about him saying goodbye, so I tried to reach out to him but I couldn't becuase all his accounts were deactivated. After that dream I would wake up comforted just to the thought of him and memories of him just kept popping up everywhere. there was one moment it genuinely felt like he was hugging me and resting his head on my shoulder. Until one night I get home from work and I start feeling an intense sense of grief and dread without reason. I could almost hear his name in my room, even though I live alone. So I google him and the first result is his obituary. It says his funeral happened just a few hours ago so I didn't make it. But I still went to the celebration of life. At the celebration of life one of his friends told me that they called him before he passed, and he was talking about me and how much he never loved me. That really broke my heart. I saw his mother too and she said he wouldn't stop talking about me in a good way and that he really loved me and cared. He just wasn't in his right mind to continue a relationship when he isn't sober. His best friends told me not to look too much into it becuase he wasn't well and before he got to that point in his alcoholism he really did care. I'm just so sad that he is gone and I just wanted him to care becuase I cared. I still care.
submitted by Lemonloid
to AlAnon [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 01:03 subject-2- test
“Last time on Total Drama Revenge of the Island! The campers did a fun game of Truth-or-Laser-Shark, which they revolted against, so we instead did a Harold-McGrady-brand-patented obstacle course! Lightning got the boot in the Catapult of Shame (Trademark Pending) because the bird is no longer with us. Or, so it seems. We also cut the Chris Mclean campfire due to budget constraints. Truly tragic, I know. What’ll happen in this episode? What embarrassing comment will Sam make this time? Find out right now on Total Drama Revenge of the Island!”
The Mutant Maggots were sleeping soundly in the luxurious spa hotel. Zoey, in particular, was loving the lavish lifestyle. Her family wasn’t the richest. The whole reason she joined to show was to make some money, to help her father out. It’d been a hard-knock life (Pun very much intended, Zoey loved that film) for her and her father ever since her mother had died. She was determined to bring the money home, no matter what. She’d also joined the show to (hopefully) make some friends. A lonely girl, she was. (Wow, she really was just stocked to the brim with references today.) But it was true! She’d make a friend in this a sweer body on her team, Mike. Nothing out of the ordinary…. Besides the fact that he was her DREAM GUY!! Nice, cute, and got her references! Just thinking about him made her swoon. She shrugged it off and got out of her bed. She did not want to leave, but she had to. After all, it was her tradition to wake up extra early in the mornings and take a walk around her neighborhood. Or, in this case, the island. She slowly inched out of bed, taking account of the sleeping Anne-Maria. She quickly got dressed and brushed her teeth, opening the door. The cool September air hit her, and she shivered. But she loved it. Everything about the island was so peaceful. The waves crashed against the beach. The birds squawked in the distance. She took in a deep breath. It was truly amazing. She started to walk around the island, soaking in the sunlight. Suddenly, she heard the creaking of a door. She turned around. It was Jo.
“Hey, Zoey,” she said, speeding up as she went.
Zoey realized she had the perfect opportunity to make a new friend!
“No, wait! I was wondering if-um, if- you’d like to go on a walk with me?”
(…she Nailed It.)
Jo looked at her, slightly confused. “Uh… Sure?”
Jo wasn’t used to anyone wanting to actually be next to her. Willingly. You couldn’t have waterboarded this information out of her, but the true reason she joined Total Drama was very different from the persona she displayed. Of course, she wanted the Million. Who didn’t? But she also wanted a friend. Someone real! Someone who wouldn’t be scared of her. She was quickly snapped out of her daydreams. Zoey was asking her something.
“Uh, so… Why’d you join Total Drama?” She asked. The early morning sunlight hit her face perfectly.
“Well, for the money! Why else would I join?” She lied.
“Well, I joined to make friends,” said Zoey.
Jo took a mental note of that. I guess she wasn’t the only lonely girl on the island.
“Do you have any siblings?” Zoey asked.
“Yeah. I Have 4 older brothers. But if you came by my house, it certainly wouldn’t seem like it!” Jo laughed. Her laugh was burly and loud. But it was also infectious and full of joy. Zoey smiled and started laughing too. Soon, all that could be heard was the joyous harmony of the two girl's laughter.
Staci was having a much worse time. It was 9:30 when she woke up. She had about 10 minutes to spare before that challenge began. All she could think about was how much she utterly hated herself. She would never dare to admit it, though. She constantly hid behind her thick layer of lies. She wished that she could just stop. But no matter how many times she’d say that she’d stop, it never came. She never stopped lying. Everyone in her life hated her, and she knew it. She was surprised that she wasn’t the first boot, for crying out loud. She slowly climbed out of the crappy bed and walked to the main lodge. She walked in, hunched over. She felt invisible.
“Hey! Come sit with us!”
…Was that to her?
She turned over to find Dawn and B, her fellow teammates, calling to her. Dawn was smiling at her.
That’s new, she thought.
She gingerly took a seat next to the two. The bigger one, whose name was B, wrote something down on his notepad.
Hello! You looked lonely, so I asked Dawn to invite you to our table! Don’t worry, we don’t bite.
Staci still couldn’t process this. Nobody had ever willingly let her sit with them.
B wrote something on his notepad.
You seem a bit tense. You alright?
“Yeah. I was just thinking. You know, my great, great-”
But Staci stopped halfway.
“You know, this dude named William Holley invented that notepad! He invented the pad around when he innovated the idea to collect all the paper scraps from various factories.”
She had done it. She hadn’t lied, for once in her life! She had finally done it!
But before Staci could celebrate, Chris threw open the door, carrying a boombox. He strutted into the lodge, then planted his feet in the center of the room and started to do that one Fortnite dance we all collectively forgot about.
“Please stop,” said Dakota. She was comforting a crying Sam, who was devastated that anyone was still doing that dance.
After a grueling thirty seconds, he finally stopped doing the awful dance.
“Ok, ok, I'll stop! Anyways, today’s challenge is called Wawanakwa Musical! Teams must perform a skit. Everyone must have a speaking part, and it must have a corny message about something found in a typical High School Disney Channel movie. The team with the best number gets to pair up people to go to prom, while the other team gets it randomly. The couples need to face off in prom-themed challenges, such as drinking all the punch, dancing off, and something else I wouldn't want to spoil for you all. The campers who win the most challenges and make the best skit will win!"
“I don't even want to know what that last challenge will be," said Mike.
"Don't worry, nothing too dangerous!" Chris replied. Some of the campers exchanged worried glances.
“Oh, a skit! How exciting!” Chirped Ella, the secret 7th member of the Mutant Maggots. She was surrounded by animals, per the norm.
“Can you please get your stupid animal friends out of my face!?” Shouted Scott, who had become a resting place for the birds, having several perched on his head.
“Little ones, farewell! You must depart, at least for now,” she said, the heartbreak break in her voice crystal clear.
“Is it just me, or was that girl not here before? But I’m not complaining! Another member of our troop is just what we need!” Brick blushed.
“I can already tell this one has a wonderful soul! Her aura is exceptionally bright pink, and it suits her wonderfully. As to how she teleported here? Beats me."
We cut to all the campers outside the main lodge. The Mutant Maggots were doing a group huddle to brainstorm ideas.
“Ok. Mags. Let’s organize a game plan! We’ve got this in the bag if we work hard and persevere!” Said Brick.
“Never call us “Mags” again,” snarked Jo.
“I like that attitude, Brick! I think our message should be about spreading kindness and not bullying!” Chirped Ella.
“I, um, thank you,” fumbled Brick, who was not used to someone complimenting him for a change.
“We need to cast everyone as a part. First off, we’ll need a bully character. Any volunteers?”
Most eyes went to Mike, the self-proclaimed Actor. He started to sweat but soon realized his team needed him. He sighed and took off his shirt. He instantly switched to Vito, one of Mike’s many alters.
“Ayo, what seems to be the issue?” said Vito. Anne-Maria was enamored instantly.
“Mike sure does take his acting seriously. Must be a method actor. Not going to lie, it’s a bit weird. But I like weird!”
“Who knew you had such a bod under that shirt?” Swooned Anne-Maria. She jumped on Vito, who didn’t mind.
“Ok Mike, we get it, you’re a good actor. Are you doing this or not?” screamed an irritated Jo.
“Yeah. sure, whatever,” said a completely uninterested Vito.
“We’ll also need a victim and five other roles. Any ideas?” asked Brick.
“How about we have one bystander and three people who spread the anti-bully message?” Ella suggested.
“Fine with me,” said Brick.
“Anyone want a particular role?” Ella asked.
“I want to be one of the spreaders,” said Jo, which was a surprise of most.
“Ok! Me and Brick can be the other two, Anne-Maria can be the victim, and Zoey can be the bystander. I have an idea for the plot- Mike bullies Anne-Maria, and Zoey doesn’t do anything. Then we come in and tell them to be kind, and then it works, and we live happily ever after!” said Ella.
“Ok, why don’t we run through it?” Suggested Jo.
“Ayo, what am I doing again?” Vito asked.
“Ugh, cut the crap and start acting!” Screamed an irritated Jo.
“Yeesh, it’s cold in here. I’m putting my shirt back on,” pretended Vito, aware that Mike probably needed to switch in. Mike was at first quite confused, but quickly realized what had happened.
We cut to a montage of the Maggots working very hard at refining the script. Lines were changed, parts swapped, and then swapped back again, but in the end, they’d created the perfect skit- the ultimate work of their labor.
However, on the other side of the auditorium were the Toxic Rats, who had fewer hurdles.
B wrote something down on his notepad.
Just make it about how great Chris is and we’re sure to win.
“Sounds like a plan to me!” Said Scott, giving the silent giant a fist-bump.
“Yeah. We can improvise it as we go! We don’t even need a script!” Dakota said.
“Wait, what are we doing?” Asked Staci, who was once again out of the loop.
Soon, Chris, Chef, and some intern sat at a table, waiting for the skits to be presented. They were at the auditorium, where the Talent Contest challenge had been done a few years back.
“Ok, maggots! Wow me!”
Chris leaned back as Mike and Anne-Maria walked out on stage.
“Hey nerd, give me your lunch money!” Said Mike, utterly failing at sounding intimidating.
“Oh no! Whatever will I do??” Said Anne-Maria, who was wearing one of Cameron’s glasses he’d left behind as a pitiful attempt for a nerd costume.
Zoey then walked out. “Oh no! I want to do something, but I’m scared!”
Jo, Ella, and Brick then walked out.
“Hey! Bullying is bad!” Shouted Ella.
“You need to stand up for yourself!” Screamed Brick at Anne-Maria.
“You need to stop being a bully!” Screamed Jo, who was significantly louder than the rest.
“And you need to learn not to be silent! If you see something, say something!” Ella finished.
“Wow! Thank you! I will always stand up for the victim next time I see someone being bullied!” said Zoey.
“And I will be kind!” said Mike.
“You better!” Shouted Jo. “Now get got and leave this poor girl alone!” Jo shoved Mike much harder than she had anticipated.
He fell off the stage, landing right on his head. The others winced at his misfortune.
“…So be kind!” Finished Ella, who then quickly scampered down to check on Mike.
Mike faded in and out of consciousness. But he knew one thing- this was not a good sign. Mike had a 6th Alter. A particularly malevolent one, should I say… His name was… Mal.
Mike stood up, sporting fresh bags under his eyes. Well, the lone eye you could see, as the other was covered by hair. He stood up and grabbed Jo by the collar.
“Don’t touch me,” he said in an even tone.
Jo was hardly threatened by Mike grabbing her, considering she was twice his size. He had no strength. But when he spoke, it was different. Something about the way he spoke scared her. His even but still threatening voice. His unwavering face of pure anger. She backed away.
“I don’t know what came over me. He’s so non-threatening in the physical department, but the way he talks?” Jo looked at the camera. “Someone give that twig actor of the year!”
We cut to Chris, Chef, and the intern. They all sat with mostly stunned and confused faces. They got into a group huddle before Chris finally spoke.
“…Okay, that was weird. But it was also pretty good, and you did everything right. We’ll give you… a 7/10.”
The maggots cheered loudly. Even though it wasn’t a nine or a ten, they were simply glad Chris gave them a satisfactory score, especially for how much work had been put into the project. Mal took in a deep breath and switched back into Mike.
“…What did I miss?” He asked. Nobody said anything, simply glaring at him.
“Ok, I’m pretty sure I switched into Mal which is definitely not a good thing.” He buried his face in his hands. “They probably all hate me now…”
“Ok, so about what Mike did back there? So weird! I know Jo shoved him, but that just felt way out of line. Or maybe I’m overthinking it. Is this normal? Am I the weird one??”
“Ok, you can sit on the bleachers now. Rats, you’re up!”
All of the rats came out at once.
“Man, I really love Chris!” Said Scott.
“Yeah, he’s so cool, and handsome to boot!” Swooned Dakota.
“Chris… Is an interesting guy!” Forced out Dawn, who genuinely could not think of anything good to say about the host.
“I don’t think Chris is all that cool,” said Staci, who hadn’t caught on yet. Scott quickly shoved her to the ground.
“How could someone not like Chris??” Scott questioned.
“That girl is insane,” added Dakota.
B drew something on his notepad. It was a drawing of Chris, with a 12-pack (if that's even possible) and surrounded by adoring fans.
They all bowed, and Chris clapped loudly, much to the chagrin of the Maggots. They had no chance.
“I LOVE it!! 10/10, Rats win!!” Chris shouted, not even bothering to ask for Chef's and the intern’s opinions.
“If you ask me, the skit the Rats made was a bunch of Chris-propaganda-spouting-nonsense. The Maggots? Now that was amazing. Every part was well played, and every line was perfect. 10/10, truly the Mutant Maggot's magnum opus. What a cinematic masterpiece." Chef then burst out laughing.
“So, it’s clear to everyone that the Rats win. You may start pairing up now. I’ll pair the Maggots in a second.”
“I can go with B!” Suggested Dawn. B nodded.
“I’ll go with Sam!” Stated Dakota. Sam looked up, surprised.
“You’re telling me that a pretty girl willingly picked me to go to prom with them??!” Sam fainted.
The only two left were Scott and Staci.
“You’ve got to be kidding me,” groaned Scott.
“Ok. Mike can go with Zoey, Ella goes with Brick, and Jo goes with Anne-Maria,” said Chris, without much thought.
We cut to the teams in a warehouse that was decorated to look like a high school. The lights were a deep purple. In the center was a disco ball, and there was a dance floor underneath it.
“Ok, the way this works is that each couple will compete in one challenge each, starting with the punch drinking contest. Each couple will need to down two giant bowls of punch, one for each person. Whoever finished their punch first wins. Also, no spilling can occur our you’re out!”
“We’ll take punch,” said Jo immediately.
“Whoa, I did not sign up for that!” Anne-Maria protested.
“Don’t care, didn’t ask. We’re doing it!” Anne-Maria rolled her eyes but eventually agreed to it.
“I’ll take the punch. I just want to get my “date” with Mrs. Flabby-Mc-chatter-mouth over as soon as possible,” groaned Scott.
The couples were waiting at the punch table for Chris to call start.
Jo quickly grabbed the bowl and downed the juice in two big gulps. She instantly turned to Anne-Maria.
“Come on, hurry up!”
Anne-Maria was having a difficult time getting the punch down. Eventually, she just couldn’t finish it. She spat all of the punch into Jo’s face. Jo screamed and clenched her fists.
“Great job, you lunatic! You cost us the challenge!” Shouted Jo.
“Maybe I woulda done betta if you weren’t SHOUTIN’ AT ME!!” Screamed Anne-Maria, her jersey accent at full display.
Jo lunged at Anne-Maria. Unfortunately for the Maggots, Scott and Staci had already finished their punch. Scott smirked and wiped the punch from his mouth.
Staci also had punch around her mouth. She wiped the punch residue off her lips, but she couldn’t wipe the permanent grin off her face. She felt a deep sense of accomplishment, despite the fact it was just a bowl of punch. She felt like she'd made a genuine contribution to her team.
“The Toxic Rats win the first round!” Shouted Chris. They cheered loudly, and the Maggots knew their fate was sealed. Jo and Anne-Maria were both fighting each other. Both were covered in the sticky fruit punch, and screaming.
“That was so unsportsmanlike that I don’t even know what to say.”
The next challenge was a dance-off. It was Ella and Brick versus Sam and Dakota.
“Ok. So, whoever can dance the longest without tripping up or giving up wins! Good luck!”
Royalty-free romance music started to play in the background. Brick had prepared for this moment his whole life. Well, he wouldn’t have expected it to be on a reality TV show with a girl he’d only known for a few days, but you win some and you lose some. Brick swooped Ella up and spun her around. Ella grabbed his hands and slowly rocked with him. They started to move around the dance floor. They continued to spin each other around in beautiful harmony. Ella couldn’t help but imagine how much this reminded her of the dance scene between Belle and the Beast. Her heart swelled. Had she found her prince? Brick was having similar thoughts. He’d never found someone quite as graceful as Ella.
Sam and Dakota were dancing much less formally. They mostly goofed off, doing random and silly dances. They were laughing very hard. Dakota couldn’t stop thinking about how cute Sam looked! The two continued to boogie, laughing all the way.
After about 30 minutes, the couples were still going strong. Well, one of them was going strong. Ella and Brick were dancing the night away, as their dance was slower and less physically demanding. Sam and Dakota weren’t fairing so well. Sam could only do so many video game dances before he tired out, and he was already on the verge of passing out. Dakota was also getting tired, but in the end, it was Sam who fell.
“The Mutant Maggots win!”
Ella and Brick collapsed into a tight embrace, happy that what felt like hours of dancing was over.
“Wow, I’ve never felt so magical in my life… And Brick! He was an amazing dancer!” Ella sighed longingly.
“She’s quite the dancer...” Brick looked away from the confessional’s camera, hiding his tomato-red face.
Mike, Zoey, B, and Dawn were nervously waiting for the final part of the challenge. One can only imagine all the messed up things Chris can come up with. Soon, Chris came close to the four teenagers.
Four interns lead the contestants to a large platform that was elevated over a pool of water. The four contestants got onto the platform, and they were given water guns filled with a red liquid.
“Inside these guns are PIG BLOOD!! You must shoot your opponents off the table and into the water. The team who can knock their opponents down first wins!”
Zoey gasped. “Is this some sort of messed up homage to Carrie?!” She asked.
“I can’t state that for copyright reasons, but I think you know the answer,” said Chris.
The duos put their fingers on the trigger, waiting for Chris to let them begin.
“Three… Two… One!”
Mike and Zoey ended up both targeting Dawn, who immediately flew into the water, as she weighed almost as much as a feather. B put his finger over the nozzle of his gun, spraying blood uncontrollably. Mike and Zoey sputtered, and Zoey was close to falling into the water.
“Zoey!” Mike screamed. He quickly jumped in front of the redhead, saving her from a particularly nasty blow from B. Zoey took B’s strategy, and also put her finger over the nozzle. Soon everyone was covered in pig blood. B was standing strong and taking the blows like a champ. However, Mike was still covering Zoey and was not fairing so well. He’d never wondered how bad pig blood would taste, and now he was experiencing it in full force. The disgusting, iron-like liquid flooded his mouth. Soon, he could take no more.
“Zoey, you got this!” He shouted as he was finally knocked into the water. Zoey trembled a bit. It was her versus the smartest guy on the show! Well, maybe besides the skinny one who’d been eliminated in episode one, but she’d already forgotten his name. B continued to spray Zoey, getting increasingly closer and closer. There was almost nothing Zoey could do. Her blows were hardly affecting the juggernaut. It didn’t help that the other team was cheering B on incredibly loudly, whilst the only person cheering for Zoey was Mike. Eventually, she couldn’t handle the blows. She tumbled off the platform and into the water.
“The Toxic Rats win! Maggots, I’ll see you at the campfire tonight.” Everyone started to clear out, sans Mike and Zoey.
B twirled the water gun around and pretended to put it in an invisible holster, stepping off the platform and leaving the warehouse. Zoey was still processing the fall and all the pig blood in her mouth. The water was cold and soothing. She wiggled around in the water, trying to get all the blood off. Once she got most of it off, she resurfaced. Mike was eagerly waiting for her.
“You did so well!” Zoey couldn’t help but smile at his adorable buck-toothed grin. When he wasn’t acting as one of his kooky personas, he sure was sweet. But Zoey still didn’t feel right about him. When he played his characters, he’d act so vastly different. That might seem normal as he was an actor overall, but he was just way too method for her liking. She was planning on asking him to maybe tone it down, if it was ok with him.
“Hey… I’ve been meaning to ask you if you could maybe tone down your acting. If that’s okay with you. It’s just… With the whole jersey shore persona and whatever you did with Jo? It’s just kind of weird because I really like you and I thought you liked me, but then you start flirting with Anne-Maria and...” Zoey started to tear up. “Obviously I don’t owe you anything but...” Suddenly the was met with the warm -if not wet and bloody- feeling of Mike’s body wrapped around her.
“Zoey... I’ve got to confess something. I have this thing called MPD. Basically, it means I have multiple personalities. When I flirt with Anne-Maria and act like an old man? Those are just some of my personalities. I just lied about the acting thing. I didn’t want to seem weird and-” Zoey quickly kissed him.
“You should’ve led with that, you dummy! Why would I judge you for that? Hell, that just makes you ten times cooler!” Mike sighed a deep sigh of relief.
“I can’t believe it! She accepts me! And I didn’t need anyone’s help telling her!”
“Well, that explains everything. I suppose it’s best that I found out this now rather than later.”
“Can you not tell anyone though? I don’t want anyone to get the wrong impression about me.” Mike saw something move in the corner of his eye, but he shrugged it off. Probably just a rat or something. The rest of the campers had left the warehouse, and it was just Mike and Zoey. Well, at least that’s what they thought.
“Of course! Your secret’s safe with me.”
The camera panned out to reveal a hidden Scott, who was hiding behind one of the lockers.
“So, Mike had MPD? I’m sure I can use that in the future. Zoey may not tell anyone, but I might!”
“Ok. So, it’s great that Zoey is cool with me, but I haven’t forgotten that… He resurfaced. I might as well fill you all in. Mal is my 6th alter. He’s a protector. But he usually ends up overdoing his job and scaring people away. He knows I need this money, and I know he’ll do anything to get it. He hasn’t come out since my Juvie days.” Mike looked to the side. “But that’s another story.”
The maggots were quite in a very somber mood. Zoey and Mike were covered in blood. Jo and Anne-Maria were covered in punch. Brick and Ella were the only people who seemed happy, albeit awkward.
“Ok, I think I’m going to take a shower,” said Mike.
The other three girls followed him, realizing that probably was a good idea. The only people left were Brick and Ella.
“Soo, what’d you think about my dance skills?” Brick asked in a joking tone.
“They were good! And I’m not lying, you really know how to dance!” Ella said, pointing at Brick.
“Thank you. I was actually saving that routine for a real prom. But I suppose a fake prom is just as good.”
“Oh! Well, you can always use it again. This of me as a practice round,” chuckled Ella.
“No, it was more than that!” Brick said. “I don’t know, it felt… Magical?”
“I know! It really did,” Ella said. Both parties looked away, blushing.
“I think I’ve found my prince…” she swooned. “And I didn’t even need to lose my shoe!”
Ella and Brick both leaned in for a mutually agreed kiss. Their lips almost touched. Almost.
“Oh my god!” Sam shouted. Both Brick and Ella screamed back. Brick even fell off the log they were sitting on.
“I am so sorry! I won’t tell anyone.” Sam covered his eyes with his hands. He stumbled away.
"Brick? And Ella?! Who would've expected that?"
Brick and Ella sat in awkward silence. It was finally broken by Brick’s infectious and hearty laugh. It was booming and loud, but it was still beautiful to Ella. She started to laugh too- her laugh was much lighter. It could’ve been mistaken for singing.
A few hours later, The Mutant Maggots were gathered at the campfire. They all exchanged nervous glances with each other. One member of their team would leave the island- permanently.
“Mutant Maggots. Welcome. There are five marshmallows on my plate. One of you will not receive one tonight, and you will catch a ride on the Bird of Shame.”
“I thought the bird died?”
“I lied. So go cast those votes and we’ll get to it!”
Voting Confessionals- Everyone on the Mutant Maggots.
“I’m voting for Jo. That bossy B-I-T-C-(Bleep) Has got to go!” Shouted Anne-Maria.
“Anne-Maria is annoying, and hardly a team player. She’s leaving tonight,” said Jo, casting her vote.
“I’m voting for Anne-Maria. I’d vote for Jo, but I feel bad after the whole Mal thing,” said Mike.
“Anne-Maria. If she keeps rubbing up on Mike, even as one of his alters, I’ll lose it!” Zoey shouted.
“I’ll vote for Jo. Sure, Anne-Maria messed up, but she initiated the fight. Not very sportsmanlike,” stated Brick, casting his vote.
“I’m voting for Jo. She lunged at Mike and set him off. Not very kind,” said Ella.
End Voting Confessionals.
“Okay. You’ve all cast your votes. Let’s get to it.”
“Zoey! Come get your marshmallow. You’re safe.”
Zoey eagerly jumped up and ate her marshmallow.
“Mike- so are you.”
He sighed a deep sigh of relief and took his marshmallow.
“Brick and Ella! Looks like you two lovers are safe.”
Brick and Ella exchanged a glance. “Uh, were not lo-”
“Sure, you aren’t. I can see the cameras, you know that, right?”
Everyone looked at the duo.
“Whatever.” Chris turned to Anne-Maria and Jo.
“Welcome, girls. You both got three votes each.”
The two looked at each other nervously.
“And because of this… You will engage in a tiebreaker!”
We cut to Jo and Anne-Maria on top of an elevated platform over water. In their hands were sticks with foam ends.
“Okay. Your goal is to knock your opponent into the water before the timer runs out. The winner will stay in the game, and the loser will take the bird home. BEGIN!”
Jo immediately lunged at Anne-Maria, expecting her to buckle underneath Jo’s so-called superior strength. But to Jo’s surprise, she held her ground. The metal sticks clashed against each other, and each girl took turns exchanging blows.
“Not bad, jersey girl!” Grunted Jo, who was genuinely struggling. Anne-Maria responded with a growl, knocking Jo to the ground.
“I’m staying in this game, Jo!” She shouted through her teeth.
Jo yelled and lunged at her, for the second time that day. She tackled Anne-Maria into the water, unfortunately taking herself down with her. The girls crashed into the water with a mighty splash. Jo quickly resurfaced.
“Do I win?!” She asked eagerly.
“Not exactly. You both fell into the water…” Chris grinned slyly.
“So?” Both girls asked.
“So, your both eliminated!” Chris shouted, laughing.
We cut to both girls on the docks.
“This is stupid. I won fair and square!” Jo yelled.
“Tell It to the bird!” Chris yelled back. The bird swooped down and took both girls by their arms. They yelled all the way.
“All right! Now that Jo and Anne-Maria are gone, how will the maggots fare? Will Brick and Ella continue their oh-so-secret romance? What will Mike do now that Scott knows about his MPD? Find out next time on,
Revenge of the island!”
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2023.05.29 00:58 TSMaynard1 [RF] ABP "Always Be Preparing"
Pine needles brushed across Paul's arms as he charged through the trees with his bugout bag slung over his shoulders. Weighing in at forty pounds, it hardly slowed him down as he’d practiced this hike many times. He flicked his wrist and checked his Garmin Solar 2 Tactical Watch. The timer read: 2:23.
“You can do this, Paul.” He increased the pace and gritted his teeth, the weight finally having an effect. Paul bounded over a small creek, up a rolling hill, and pushed through a row of baby birches into a clearing. He doubled over to catch his breath and looked at his watch one more time. Two hours and twenty-eight minutes. Paul pumped his fist in victory.
After a short break, he approached a thorny bush in the center of the clearing. Paul brushed aside sand at the bush’s trunk, revealing a yellow rope. He pulled it, which lifted a hidden door in the ground covered with dirt, shrubbery, and other camouflage on the top side, and drab gray iron on the other. Underneath, wooden stairs descended into darkness. Paul retrieved a flashlight from his pack, clicked on the beam, and disappeared into the earth.
At the bottom of the steps, Paul faced a steel door and a combination lock. With several quick swipes of the dial, he opened the lock and tugged the metal door, which creaked as it cracked open. Paul flashed the beam on the offending hinges and shook his head. Something to fix later. He stepped into the secret chamber and pulled a hanging aluminum chain that turned on a large halogen light, illuminating a twenty-foot by eight-foot metal rectangle. The exposed corrugated walls revealed the bunker was nothing more than a shipping container. Paul buried it two years ago and had divided the interior into three spaces. The entry had a shelf with four dozen gallon jugs of sealed water along with a portable toilet, stacks of toilet paper, and a wastebasket. The middle section was the main living area and contained a futon, a TV with a DVD player, and a neat collection of movies underneath. A nightstand housed a small library of books, including the Bible, The Art of Meditation, Buddhism for Dummies, and other spiritual tomes. The back area of the unit had two shelves filled with canned food—black beans, green beans, peaches, peas, carrots, beef, and chicken. There was also a stationary bike, which was Paul’s proudest accomplishment because he had rigged it to a giant battery that provided power to all the electronics.
Paul was a prepper, and this would be his home when the end of the world came, an event he believed was imminent. The global economy was a house of cards built on greed, corruption, and inflated asset prices, but worst of all, it was based on a faith in paper and digital money.
His fear was triggered four years ago when he attended a lecture by a professor who explained the fragility of the world’s financial system. If a few banks failed, it would rattle people’s confidence, causing a herd-like response. Thousands of people would rush to withdraw their cash, which the banks no longer had because they’d invested it. The banks would either fail, and everyday folks would lose their life savings, or the government would print new money to replace the missing money, making all money worth a lot less. Anyone holding dollars would attempt to convert them to other assets.
Just like dominoes, the banks would topple over one by one, and as they crashed, people’s faith in money would crater. After all, what was money? It was just paper with printed images and numbers that we’d all accepted as having value. More recently, money had become numbers displayed on a computer screen, something Paul knew firsthand as he spent the first seven years of his career working at a regional bank in Asheville, North Carolina. Paul could literally change someone’s net worth with a few keystrokes. He could turn a pauper into a millionaire, or he could bankrupt the richest account holder. Sure, there were safeguards, but all were built on faith, which Paul believed was misplaced. Most people didn’t realize that the Federal Reserve only required each bank to hold at least ten percent of its deposits as a reserve. Ten percent. That’s it. The rest of the money was invested in loans or other financial instruments. As the rich bank owners and executives pushed for bigger and bigger returns, they invested in riskier and riskier assets. The lessons from the financial crisis of 2008 had been forgotten.
Once the monetary system collapsed, the entire economy would become paralyzed. Without a means of exchange, transactions would halt. Think about it. If someone tried to give you a slip of paper that you thought was worthless, would you give them anything of value in return?
The doomsday scenario would escalate. Food and water prices would skyrocket, but with no way to purchase them, many would starve. But people don’t just roll over and die, they would riot and take what they need to survive. Marshall Law would be implemented, but citizens would revolt against the government they felt had cheated them.
As Paul listened to the lecturer that fateful day, a depressing epiphany struck. Everything he’d learned and everything he’d spent his life acquiring was worthless.
Growing up, Paul had been taught the value of money, saving, and planning for retirement. He internalized these lessons as a teen after his father got sick and lost his job. His mother had died when he was very young, but his father still managed to provide him with a stable childhood, even though they were barely middle class. When his father fell ill, Paul witnessed firsthand how fast a family could sink into financial trouble, which couldn’t have come at a worse time. He was applying to colleges, and instead of choosing the one he liked best, he chose the one that gave him the most financial aid, which turned out to be a small school half-way across the country. He also didn’t choose a major he was excited about; he chose the one that would offer the safest financial prospects—economics with an emphasis on banking.
The distance from home meant that Paul didn’t see the rapid deterioration of his father. It wasn’t until he returned for the funeral that family friends told him how the disease had spread. His father had refused to let anyone tell Paul because he didn’t want that to distract Paul from his studies.
After graduating, Paul accepted a job at a bank, and immediately signed up for the company’s 401K match. Most college graduates can't grasp retirement when they enter the workforce, but a 401K match was free money. Over the next several years, Paul worked diligently to advance his career while saving most of his salary. He’d mapped out his life on an excel spreadsheet and calculated that he’d be financially secure at 53.
Everything went according to plan until that damn lecturer came along and blew it up. Sifting through the rubble of his grand scheme, Paul realized that in the new world order, he possessed no skills to survive. The savings he’d so meticulously built up would have little to no value. When the economy collapsed, he'd be like a baby, unable to do anything for himself.
After a week of wallowing in despair, Paul rallied himself. “I can still fix this” became a daily mantra. To start, he threw himself into survival classes. The first was a basic camping course where he learned how to create shelters and start a fire. The next class was more advanced and focused on water purification and building snares for small game.
Paul continued working at the bank, because he needed to pay for the classes and survival equipment he began hoarding, but on his next vacation, he put his training to the test. He planned to camp for a week in the Appalachian Mountains, but the temperature swings, especially at night, were too much. Paul lasted three nights in the wild. The humbling experience forced him to admit that he wasn’t a bushman. His depression returned until he stumbled upon an article about “preppers”—individuals who prepare for end of world disasters. Suddenly, things made sense. He didn’t need to abandon all the comforts of modern society. He needed to prepare for the end of the world the way he had planned for retirement.
As Paul traveled down the rabbit hole of prepping, he uncovered an underground society of people like him who knew the truth about the world’s demise. Of course, not everyone believed it would end because of an economic collapse. Some thought a nuclear war would destroy civilization. Others feared electromagnetic pulses from the sun would wipe out all modern electricity. And still others worried a massive volcanic eruption would spew enough ash and soot into the air to blot out the sun. There was no shortage of theories about the world ending, but one thing was clear. The world would end. Did it matter how it happened?
Paul began his prepping quest by purchasing ten acres an hour and a half outside of Asheville. It had plenty of small animals and a creek running through the middle. He then transported an unused cargo container to the land and buried it. This was the toughest part of the plan because it required heavy equipment. Next, he dug out a staircase and installed a steel door at the entrance. Finally, he furnished it with a mix of modern comforts and survival essentials.
Almost every weekend, Paul trekked to his underground sanctuary and made improvements. He also planned his bugout strategy. When the end of the world hit, he figured he needed to be safely hidden in his home within two and a half hours, a time he had achieved with this latest trip. Everything was set, and Paul could finally relax. He was prepared.
Paul slumped down on his futon and considered playing a movie or cracking the bottle of Jim Beam whiskey he stored in a special cabinet, but he shook off the urge. Those things were the rewards and comforts he’d enjoy after the world ended. His fingers rubbed the top of the Bible, something he planned to read cover to cover once the global economy cratered. He’d have plenty of time then to discover his spiritual side, but not now. Something else needed to be done. Something he’d missed.
The biggest mistake a prepper can make is assuming he had everything covered. This was the lesson taught by Yannis, the guru of the prepping world. He was so well-known within the doomsday community; he only went by one name. The guy was sharp as a whip and could live off the land, if necessary, but he preferred a more sophisticated lifestyle, so he created a luxurious cave that contained backup systems for all his backups. Food, water, shelter, and electricity were all taken care of, and it was projected that Yannis could survive ten years comfortably after the apocalypse. His famous blog titled “ABP” stood for Always Be Preparing. It was a motto Yannis lived by and something Paul aspired to, but as he sat in his bunker after the relentless hike, fatigue set in. He didn’t want to think about prepping or his bugout strategy. He wanted to just be.
Paul tilted his head back onto the futon’s cushion, and a loneliness crept into his mind. All his prepping left little time for relationships. He dated off and on in college, but it was never anything serious. It wasn’t like his high school sweetheart, Kristin Summer. They dated junior and senior year, but then Paul broke it off when his father got sick. Paul couldn’t focus on romance, and he knew the relationship wouldn’t have worked when he left for school 1,500 miles away. It still hurt when he learned from a friend that Kristin started dating Derek Gorman, an old classmate Paul hated. It hurt even more when he found out they had gotten married.
After college, Paul joined a couple of dating sites, but he hadn’t used them in over two years. Most women wouldn’t understand his prepping lifestyle, at least that’s what he feared, so he rejected dating before anyone could reject him. But most wasn't all, and with eight billion people on the planet, there had to be someone for him. Almost without thinking, Paul pulled out his phone and opened “My Match,” the site where he’d had the most luck. His profile still had a photo from his early banking days. He was clean shaven with a naïve smile. The face staring back in the picture differed greatly from the bearded survivalist he’d become. Would anyone consider a relationship with the new Paul? Only one way to find out. He snapped a selfie, uploaded it, and then updated his hobbies with the first being “prepping” followed by “survival skills training.” He finished by pressing the button that showed he was actively looking for someone. All he had to do now was wait.
After spending the night in his bunker, Paul checked the dating site in the morning. No response. “It was a stupid idea,” he told himself, and stuffed his phone back into his pocket. He locked his container and returned home.
Over the next two weeks, Paul received zero requests for a date. He didn’t even receive a message from anyone to start a conversation and test the waters. “Shake it off, dumbass,” he said alone in the confines of his cottage-style home. “The world is going to end, anyway.” He clenched his jaw and did what he always did. He researched more ways to survive. Paul poured over blog posts and imagined worst-case scenarios. How could his water be contaminated? Maybe he should bury some caches of water. What if someone finds his shelter? Maybe security cameras were needed. What if he gets lonely in his shelter? No ideas came to mind.
After his eyes got tired from reading, Paul clicked out of his browser, and the list of all his apps stared at him. For reasons unknown to him, he opened Facebook, something he hadn’t done for months. There were a handful of notifications and a couple of friend requests sent weeks ago. His heart raced when he saw the name of one—Kristin Summer. When he accepted, he saw she was on-line right then.
Should he message her? Would that be weird right after accepting her request? But wasn’t it weird that he hadn’t responded for several weeks? He pulled up the messenger and typed. “Hey. Sorry for the delay in accepting your request. Hadn’t been on Facebook in a while. Been busy. Hope you and Derek are well.”
He curled his lip in disgust as he typed Derek’s name and considered deleting it, but he took the moral high ground and hit “send” with his message unaltered.
Kristin Summer. Just the thought of her name brought a smile to Paul’s face.
The sound alerted Paul to a response, which he read out loud. “Hey Paul. Good to hear from you. Derek and I divorced a little over a year ago. It was rough at first, but it was for the best. How are you?”
Paul’s eyes widened with shock and excitement. He couldn’t believe Derek was so stupid to let Kristin go. Paul could at least blame their breakup on his father’s illness. His fingers prattled away on the keyboard. “Things are amazing.” He stopped typing. That was a lie. Should he pretend like things were great or should he be honest and tell her about his prepping and the end of the world? Neither option sounded appealing. He tapped the keys without writing until he settled on something uncontroversial.
“Working at Trinity Bank in Asheville. It pays the bills. Where are you?”
Within a minute, the sweet sound of the notification binged. “I’m not too far away in Durham. If you’re ever in town, let me know.”
If you’re ever in town, let me know.
Paul couldn’t believe his eyes. Was Kristin asking him out? He shook his head. Nah, she’s probably just being polite. But maybe. If there was any chance, he had to find out. He chewed his lip and deliberated his next response. Fortune favors the bold, he told himself. Then he remembered Matt Damon telling people that in the now infamous commercial for FTX months before its collapse. When that occurred, Paul thought it was the beginning of the end, and he lived in his bunker for two days before emerging and finding the world still intact.
Paul clenched his fist. It was still good advice, and he had to try. Almost involuntarily, he typed, “I’ll be there tomorrow afternoon. If you want to get together, let me know.” His finger hit send before he could talk himself out of it. There was no qualification in the message. No waffling or hedging. It was clear Paul wanted to see Kristin. The only question now was whether she wanted to see him.
The next ten minutes felt like ten days. Paul paced back and forth with his hands over his head, and he glanced at the monitor every few seconds, just in case his ears had missed the notification alert.
There was nothing.
A dark depression filled the room. Why had he gotten his hopes up? What was the point, anyway? The world was going to end.
Paul leapt to the computer and his eyes widened with each word he read. “How about a lunch at The Fig Tree Restaurant on 7th?”
People overuse the word literally, but Paul at least felt like his jaw was literally on the floor. He had a date with Kristin Summer, the one woman he had loved. His hands rattled away at the keyboard. “See you at 1 tomorrow.”
“Holy crap,” he muttered to himself.
Panic replaced his excitement when he imagined sitting down and talking to Kristin. What would he say? “Hey Kristin, what have you been up to? Oh me? I’ve been working at a job I hate and planning for the end of the world.”
He drifted into the bathroom and stared at the scruffy character in the mirror. Paul could only cringe at the thought of Kristin’s reaction upon seeing him. She might not recognize the bearded loner who resembled Ted Kaczynski more than the short-haired, clean-shaven teen she last saw.
Only one thing to do.
Paul had to prepare. He opened a drawer and pulled out a pair of clippers. He began trimming his beard and mustache as short as the clippers would allow. Next, he applied a generous amount of cream and shaved all of it off. Paul smirked at the young man hiding under the shabby beard, but it still wasn’t enough. He set the guard on the clippers to a four and began shaving his head. In college, Paul cut his own hair to save money, and the skill came back to him quickly. He dropped to a three and worked in a fade on the sides and then finished with a two. Paul turned to the left, then to the right, and assessed his work. Not bad.
Next thing to prepare was his outfit. Paul slid the door of his closet open and evaluated his choices. A banker’s suit was too stuffy, and his mountain man denim was too hermit inspired. He yanked the clothes aside and climbed deeper into the recesses of his wardrobe until he found a nice buttoned-down shirt and a dark pair of slacks. It gave just the right vibe of successful and stable, while not trying too hard to impress, even though that was his precisely his goal. Paul laid the selection on the chair by his bed. Durham was a three-and-a-half-hour drive away, and he wanted to make sure he got there with time to find parking, and maybe use the restroom. He set the alarm on his iPhone for 6 a.m. That would give him plenty of time to take a shower, have breakfast, and get dressed.
There was no chance of falling asleep easily. His mind raced with thoughts, questions, and various scenarios about what the day would bring. To relax, he poured himself a double whiskey, which he downed with a single slurp. He poured another and sipped.
Kristin Summer. He shook his head, still in disbelief.
As the effect of alcohol set in, Paul laid down on his bed and shut his eyes. Tomorrow would be a good day.
Paul slipped into a deep, satisfying sleep until his mind jolted him awake. It was past 6 a.m. He didn’t know how he knew. He just knew. Paul had slept through his alarm. He snatched his phone off the nightstand, but it was out of battery. He checked his watch and saw it was 7 a.m. There was still time to get to Durham.
Paul jumped out of bed and into the bathroom. He flicked on the light switch, but nothing came on. Paul toggled it on and off, but the outlet was dead.
Police sirens wailed in the distance. Paul meandered out of his house and onto the front lawn. Aside from the sirens, there was an uneasy stillness. Paul’s neighbor Kurt ran out from his home with two suitcases that he flung into the trunk of his car.
“Kurt. What’s going on?” Paul asked.
“Fort Knox was bombed. All the gold was obliterated. And something happened to the electricity and the internet. They shut it down.”
“I don’t know, man, but it’s not good. No one has access to news, no money, nothing.”
“Where are you going?” Paul asked.
“I don’t know. Somewhere isolated. I’m just hoping there are no more bombings or other attacks.” Kurt jumped into his car and sped away.
This was it. The world was ending. All of his preps were about to pay off. But what about Kristin? Paul didn’t want the world to end. If he tried to get Kristin, there was no chance he could reach his shelter before things get hairy. Plus, there was no way he could find her. He didn’t have her address, and she might have already left Durham for somewhere safe.
Paul forced himself to focus on his plan. This was what he had prepared for. He dashed back inside and changed into his camouflage gear, grabbed his bugout bag, and then sprinted to his truck. He drove through his neighborhood and reached the main road. His shelter and plans were to the left. Kristin and the unknown were to the right. The whites of Paul’s knuckles flared as he gripped the steering wheel. Now was not the time to waffle. He turned left and hit the accelerator.
Paul gritted his teeth and raced down the street. Keep going. Keep going. He urged himself on. Almost involuntarily, his foot slammed on the brakes. Paul couldn’t do it. He’d planned for the worst all his life, and while he sat alone with the engine idling, he had to admit the truth. He’d lived all his life in fear.
Paul yanked the wheel and turned around toward Durham.
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2023.05.29 00:57 InfernoAA P.U.R.E I
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Perfectly Unadulterated Regal Excellency. P.U.R.E. Named in dedication to four of the greatest technical wrestlers of all-time – Mr. Perfect, Kurt Angle, William Regal, and Bret Hart – tonight is as big as it ever gets for the Blitz brand as we embark on our first-ever edition of BTE's Blitz equivalent PPV! Much like those men, if you wish to be successful in Pure Rules, you must embody intelligence, grit, and a goal-driven mindset to reach the top, so keep that in mind as you immortalise your names into history on this INSANE 14-match card! Emanating from the Twickenham Stadium in London, England, home to the English National Rugby Team, 82,000 strong will be here to witness history in one of the biggest crowds in FBE’s history, beating even BTE attendance numbers! A huge thank you to Petite Jupiter’s PJs ‘N PB&Js for sponsoring us tonight, commemorating the long-awaited return of a legend with comfort for the body and the soul! Now, get strapped in for the show of a lifetime as England’s own Royal Blood sets the tone for the night with a live performance of their latest single, “Mountains At Midnight”
Non-Title Champion vs Champion: FBE Television Champion Cactus Mike vs FBE Junior Heavyweight Champion Paddy Murphy
Opening in HUGE fashion is a first-time ever dream meeting between two of the most beloved members of the roster! On one side is the two-time Television Champion with SIX overall defences to his name, The Ark’s Cactus Mike! Recently having his own one-year anniversary celebration much like Blitz last week, he’s been an icon in every division he’s taken part in, from being a component of the thrilling 3-way rivalry with John and Jay Castle, to an intense Shining-esque blood feud with Happy, to being one of the most consistent Pure Rules competitors, taking the likes of Inferno and Apeirogone to their limits. Proving his mettle in the Shining Light League, tonight more than ever can put him in the conversation for being next in line!
On the other side is the current Junior Heavyweight Champion, the Sham-Rock ‘N Scot Connection’s Paddy Murphy! Following a career trajectory similar to the Cardiac Cactus himself in his first few months, he’s rapidly elevated himself from a youngblood to one of the most emotionally riveting performers in the company today, having taken the Junior Division by storm under the guidance of his Sensei and his Dojo. Further greatness surely ahead of the World’s Most Wanted, his 6-point tournament run more than proving his potential, this could be his moment of redemption that catapults him into the next stratosphere, another Ark member having been the only obstacle between him and the Semi Finals! Prompt: Rebook The British Bulldog’s WWF Intercontinental Championship Reign (Max 1000 Words)
Petite Jupiter Invitational: Arslan Malik vs Ferdinand Maxim vs Guy Fawkes vs Mr. Calcote Miller vs Vix
It’s finally happening, laddies! Initially announced for the first-ever BTE, the Petite Jupiter Invitational was a Battle Royale scheduled to commemorate the legacy of the then recently retired Shining Light, with the winner earning an Intercontinental Championship shot. Though plans fell through, there’s no reason it shouldn’t take place on the first BTE-level show of the Pure Division! Whilst a secondary title doesn’t yet exist on Blitz, the winner of this match can definitely expect their name to be held in higher regards, leaving with a trophy they can cherish when looking back on the moment that elevated them to the next level, one competitor from this plucky spread of rising stars being immortalised.
Will it be the Ass-Kicker Arslan Malik punching a hole through the competition? Perhaps Le Prince de Paris Ferdinand Maxim can make his kingdom even more golden? Maybe former Junior Heavyweight Champion Guy Fawkes can break bank in another division? Could Big 4 Main Eventer Mr. Calcote Miller be in line for a return to glory? Or is the most synonymous with the original prize of this match, former FBC Intercontinental Champion Vix soaring into the stars? Prompt: Book the next year of any championship of your choosing (Max 1000 Words)
Mark Steel vs Michael Menzies II
In recent weeks, something of a rivalry has begun to brew between Death to Juniors and their latest targets, the Sensei-led duo of the Sham-Rock ‘N Scot Connection. With Paddy Murphy taking DTJ’s Junior Title and Michael Menzies going to war with Joshua Epps and Mark Steel in back-to-back weeks, why stop there? When the Future-Proof last tested his skills against DTJ, he was lost, without direction, searching for a means of survival. But what difference a month makes, now a completely transformed star since replacing the Kalamity surname, finding himself in strong company, no longer to be soloed out by the vultures of the Heavyweight Division.
Still, he can’t solely rely on friends to make it big. A recent landslide victory in his favour on Blitz makes it appear as though he’s ready for Round Two against the Gatekeeper of New Talent, so exactly that will occur, Michael receiving a chance at redemption against the stable which has his number! In Peak Performance’s case, shutting down the Junior Revolution before it can fully take off its feet would be in his best interest, nothing sweeter than bragging about single-handedly being the cause of death of another competitor’s potential, Steel keeping his territory on lock from newcomers! Prompt: Book Clash at the Castle II (Max 1000 Words)
Simon Brown vs Kentaro Sakamoto vs Travis Broski
Tournaments have oft been a means of elevating competitors closer to the brass ring, the gruelling schedules showing their true inner resilience and ability to maintain their skill even into the later rounds. For all three of these men, that statement couldn’t be truer.
Exhibit A: Simon Brown. Though his FBE tenure was brief, he smashed through the glass ceiling in a manner many are unable to, a run into the Semi Finals of the inaugural Gedo Classic being promptly followed up by him becoming the second-ever Junior Heavyweight Champion in just a month or so of joining FBE, putting himself on a list that’s spawned some of the biggest stars of the current era.
Exhibit B: Kentaro Sakamoto. Going from the third member of Semper Lucet to forever remembered for his performance in the inaugural Punish & Crush Tournament, his advancement to the Finals over championship competition made it clear as day what he could offer at his best, becoming a staple Heavyweight ever since, sharing iconic moments alongside PROSPECT.
Exhibit C: Travis Broski. Much like The Immortalizer, he too was launched into the next stratosphere with an inspiring Gedo Classic Semis campaign in its most recent edition, the Undercity Underdog going on to upset some of the most valued juggernauts in company history in its aftermath, now continuing to remain a threat to the top of the pecking order.
All three feasibly able to take on the entire world if they so please (and all Ape guys?), they’re going to have to confront their most unique challenge yet in shattering mirrors of themselves! Prompt: Book GUNTHER until WrestleMania 40 (Max 1000 Words)
James Scott vs Jason Beggs
When you look at the career James Scott has had, it’s hard not to envy the Purest Protagonist for his many accolades. Intercontinental Champion, the original Junior Champion Ace, inaugural Lifeline Classic Winner over Hall of Fame level competition, New Beginning III main eventer, he’s been around the block and then some. Inventing the model for what a newcomer to the company should resemble if they wish to be remembered, fearlessly running with the giants like he’s David, he’s surely inspired a generation, but what about those from his generation?
When one man dominates the rest, there’s to be casualties along the way, Jason Beggs being one of those who suffered from Scott’s meteoric rise, his name being forgotten in favour of the Aussie, despite Jason beating him in Scott’s multi-man debut. With three years passing since both first broke into the company, they find themselves in the same division again, making it only inevitable that their paths would cross again on the hunt for the Pure Title. So, why not now? Becoming Irresistible since his return, for Beggs this is the perfect opportunity at revenge by tossing James down the mountain this time in a Lion King moment, but as always, it’s Scott vs The World and he won’t be rolling over for anyone! Prompt: Book the revival of Pete Dunne (Max 1000 Words)
Battle of the Best II: DTJ (Misery, Hunter Maguire, Joshua Epps) vs PROVINCE (Sebastian King, Erick Koeman, Karma) vs The RISE (Ripley, John LaGuardia, Victor Williams)
On 1000 days of FBE, three of the most iconic stables in the company’s history butted heads, British Ambition, Lifeline, and PRIDE Gang squaring off in the inaugural Battle of the Best, that match putting a bow to the end of those 9 men’s generation, a more modern school of FBE competition ensuing in its aftermath which blended two very different eras together. Of the new crop, three factions have been inseparable over the past year in every form they’ve come to pass, Death to Juniors, PROVINCE, and The RISE all being tied at the hip.
WarGames earlier this year seeing The RISE’s predecessor, J.E.M, defeat DTJ, and PROVINCE subsequently debuting at DTJ’s expense, the critically acclaimed group has taken enough from both squadrons, finally getting a chance to exact their revenge on both in one fell swoop! PROVINCE and The RISE aren’t without their own issues either, the Shining Light League sparking friction between them in block matches, all 3 factions trading victories over the course of the competition, DTJ and The RISE even putting representatives through to the Semi Finals whilst PROVINCE costed the remainder of their men from moving on. In a race to prove themselves the next big things of the company, one faction will walk out here with a trophy to their name and a score at last settled! Prompt: Book Ilja Dragunov on the Main Roster (Max 1 Part Per Person; 1000 Words each)
EED vs JOHN
Whilst FBE’s been a breeding ground for a wide range of colourful personalities, there’s been few that’ve acted as ‘anti-personalities’, deviating from the supernatural world to crack down on those they’ve felt to be caricatures of what a true wrestler should be. The most shining example of all in the Wild West was EED, standing out against the variety pack roster with his scathing, no-nonsense attitude, drilling a hole in the skull of anyone, both on the mic and in the ring, who he deemed unbecoming to the sport which paid his bills and subsequently having his way with their tattered remains.
Though no one has since quite managed to capture the aura of the Notorious, few might’ve argued JOHN to be his successor. All caps, plain and simple, the Misfit’s been unlike his exotic peers, simply a freak of nature uprooting anything in his path. A career marked by gold much like the former Television and Commonwealth Champion, JOHN with his own record-breaking Junior Heavyweight Championship reign, tonight he gets a chance to step to an OG as one of these two prove themselves to be the undisputed real man’s man of FBE! Prompt: Book Drew McIntyre’s Return (Max 1000 Words)
Nate Matthews vs T.M Imran
Before T.M Imran was an official member of the FBE roster, he was one of the guinea pigs of the Trials system, and though he managed to win over majority of his examiners, there was but one he simply couldn’t crack – Nate Matthews. A Living Legend by this company’s standards and understandably one of the toughest to impress given his unmatched laundry list of accomplishments, from his many firsts like walking in as World Champion into the first BTE’s main event or being the first Grand Slam Winner, 8 championship reigns to his name, to being the Ace at one point, it would take a hell of a lot more to catch his attention.
In the wrestling business they say ‘to be the man you have to beat the man’, so what better way to gain the respect of the OG than through wrestling him? Nate competing in the first-ever Pure Rules match in company history, defeating him in a category his name’s been forever tied to would certainly give the Fifth Asian Tiger’s career its defining moment after two Television Championship reigns that put him on the map, the two Heyman Classic entrants to get warmed up here ahead of a bid to make BTE’s main event this year! Prompt: TBD
Bong vs Bengt Holm
The crossover appeal of FBE has brought in a myriad of names over the years from all walks of life, but above all perhaps the most influential is Bong. A staunch anti-racism campaigner from the world of LLR, he’s considered royalty in his home promotion, a G1 Climax Winner among other lauded accomplishments living the unemployed life of raising two families yet still sparing the time to whoop anyone who gives him grief. He’s Scottish, he’s unhinged, and he’ll rawdog you back to wherever you came from, no expenses paid.
If you hold a popularity contest, Bong would take the crown, but someone who’s rapidly been gaining recognition since joining in the last couple months is the one they call KillKill, Bengt Holm accruing quite the name on both Firestorm and Blitz, most recently putting up a valiant effort against the Junior Champion. With Kojot in his ear and a Bong-like affinity to deal with his problems using his fists, this Thai-tanic could be the one they warn the icebergs about, the unsinkable Bengt headed to the helm of his division if he can outshine the sheer star power of his adversary here! Prompt: Book the push of Maximum Male Models (Max 1000 Words)
Code Blue vs Jay Castle III
Resistance III was supposed to be the greatest night of Code Blue’s life until it wasn’t. Mugged by The Aether Aces before the match could even begin and having his eye stabbed by their latest recruit, former PROSPECT member Jay Castle, he was taken out of commission that night, though it had him return even more driven, and this time with a vengeance. The issues between these two extend long before that night however, butting heads all the way back in the main event of Blitz III one year ago, where the Hometown Hero narrowly upset the now shared longest reigning champion in FBE history.
Proceeding to cross paths again as part of the famed Ark/PROSPECT rivalry, Blue getting his win back in an Intercontinental Championship Eliminator that kickstarted his recent meteoric rise, they’ve never been ones to see eye to eye, and especially after what Jay did to Blue, the chance of it ever happening is dead in the water. They say an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind, but that’s the least of the Pasadena Paralyser’s concerns, not letting Castle slip by him this time as he hunts down his rival only days removed from his first-ever singles World Heavyweight Championship match, fatigued yet with the drive of an army of 1000 men to strike down with furious anger to settle their score once and for all! Prompt: Book a Nigel McGuinness Return Run (Max 1000 Words)
Atlas Rogue vs Ethan Fadely VII
When it comes to utterly personal rivalries, Atlas Rogue and Ethan Fadely’s is very much up there. Stretching all the way back to 2020, when Sol Ace took the Son of the Roses’ World Heavyweight Championship, a mutual hatred was sparked between the polar opposites, Fadely eventually having his revenge in his unstoppable 2022 return, taking Rogue to mercy at New Beginning IV. After a bloody WarGames between Infinite POWER and REVOLT, the two met again late last year, trading victories, Atlas besting Fadely at his own game, and Ethan getting the Godfather of Pure Rules back under his district. Once Ethan formed The Aether Aces with Atlas’s former partner, the siren began to sing her song, luring the two to one more match, one year on from their previous NB encounter. And once again, it was Fadely callousing his foe, leaving him with horrific injuries to tie up their saga 3-3.
3 months have passed since and Rogue hasn’t been able to forget, the scars he sees in the mirror each morning reminding him of what must be done. Now, fully healed up, King Blitz is back for one final dance with his career rival to break the tie between them, adamant to round out his incredible Pure Rules run by beating the one that got away! In Ethan’s case however, it’s all about ending Atlas for good this time, the Portlander wanting to add to The Aether Aces stretch of top-billing stars they’ve buried in a ditch, a tiebreaking victory the most crucial one available! Will Atlas start the Summer with a dead rose, or can Ethan crush the King’s crown under his boot? Ladies and Gentlemen, it’s the Final Rodeo between Rogue and Fadely! Prompt: Book Forbidden Door II (Max 1000 Words)
British Rounds: Desmond Caid vs Capital STEEZ VIII
Unlike the consistent hatred brimming between the last two, the saga between Desmond Caid and Capital STEEZ has followed a rather different trajectory. Though seesawing between mutual loathing and respect, at the centre of it all has always lain a consistent power struggle between two of the elite in their quests to prove themselves the undisputed best. Starting with the opener of the first-ever Carnage Tour – which has gone on to become a tradition between the two – their story has served as a timeline of King Capital’s growing stardom against the first Ace of FBE. The first year resulting in constant failures for STEEZ, from Carnage to an Intercontinental Championship match to WarGames to the Heyman Classic to BTE II’s main event, the winds of change finally blew in his direction come 2021, Steelo scoring his first win over the Maestro in the Lifeline Classic.
Marking the start of STEEZ’s rise into the Ace spot once occupied by Caid, the narrative began to shift in his favour, coming back from a 4-0 deficit to best him each subsequent year at Carnage, with tag team victories in the Battle of the Best and Three Stages of Hell along the way, this year putting him up to 4-3. Now, they’re set to meet yet again as STEEZ receives his chance to tie up the saga, whilst Desmond looks to break his dry spell against his iconic foe. What makes this match so unique compared to the rest however is the stipulation in place. Always known for their lengthy classics against each other, for the very first time they’re going to meet under an entirely different ruleset, the British Rounds system testing their ability to work a much, much quicker pace! Caid on home turf much like he was back at Unbreakable II, if there’s anytime to cut STEEZ off, it’s here, whilst for the Bossman, writing over the crushing memories of London would be in his best interest in finally cementing himself as having Desmond’s number! Prompt: Book Hideo Itami if he skipped NXT and went directly to the Main Roster (Max 3 Parts; 1000 Words each)
Non-Title: FBE World Heavyweight Champion Inferno vs Petite Jupiter III
After years of grinding yet being forced to settle for second best, 2023 has undisputedly been Inferno’s year, ruling the roost with an iron fist from the jump, a Booker in the Bank cash-in mere weeks in making him Double Champion alongside his X Division (Pure) Championship reign. Embarking on a murderous run with the support of The Aether Aces, he’s crushed old and new faces alike week after week in everything from a draining 90-Minute Iron Man match to a thrilling British Rounds showdown to an emotional Title vs Career classic, diving further and further past the point of no return with his bastardly streak. Sitting atop the Pure ruleset with the most matches and wins in history, using it as a means to stomp out fledgling talent and address unfinished business, it seems as though there’s no one who can stop Baba Blitz.
…That is, no one that’d been currently active. Making a bombshell return after over a year of being sidelined with injury, appearing on Blitz’s one-year anniversary to present the trophy to the Shining Light League Winner, a tournament named in his honour, Petite Jupiter whipped Buckingham Palace into a frenzy with his appearance, London giving him the perfect homecoming. One of only 2 people the Aether Ace has never beaten in his career, Inferno was quick to interrupt his British Ambition brother, though seeming more like strangers with how much has changed between them since their last meeting. Goading him into one more match by pushing his buttons like the master manipulator he’s proven to be, citing the Shining Light’s lack of victories over reigning World Champions despite his Hall of Fame career, the ever-valiant PJ accepted, setting the stage for a long-awaited blockbuster end to their trilogy!
No shortage of Pure Rules experience himself, PJ the Grandfather to Blitz if Inferno’s its Baba, he holds a win over the Brummie Bastard under the ruleset, having faced off under it at the first FBE Anniversary Show after a despaired Inferno had turned his back on his brothers, feeling abandoned by them in his time of need, PJ subsequently bringing him back to the light. Later also sullying Inferno’s first BITB cash-in, which he’s since perfected, keeping his prized Intercontinental Championship from him, he’s held his former World Tag Team Championship partner’s number for the past 3 years, but now, it remains to be seen if the story will be any different, the two Britons colliding one final time in their home country as all their experiences craft the perfect closing chapter to their tale! Prompt: Book a main event push for PAC (Max 1000 Words)
FBE Pure Championship: Shining Light League Winner FBE World Tag Team Champion Dr. Logan Wright (c) vs Apeirogone 3rd Defence
The term ‘Final Boss’ isn’t thrown about lightly. Throughout FBE history, only one man’s been truly synonymous with the term. They say it’s anyone’s season until this man comes around. They claim he’s the type of guy to fly down to Hell and come back with gift shop souvenirs. World Championships, two-hour Gauntlets, Three Stages of Hell, he’s been there and won them all. Wins over damn near every single person that’s come to matter throughout the company’s history, he’s that guy. Legendary factions, shows named after him, an entire cult of personality backing him as the company’s Commissioner, what more could you want out of a person’s resume? Well, it’s not about what the people want, or what he himself wants, but rather, what another man yearns for. The chance to immortalise his name into wrestling history. The chance to join only four others in their abilities to beat this man. The chance to cement themselves as a Final Boss forever.
Dr. Logan Wright, reigning two-time FBE Pure Champion off the back of being one of only two to pin the current World Champion this year, reigning FBE World Tag Team Champion via ending the longest championship reign of any title in company history after winning 2023’s Punish & Crush, inaugural Shining Light League Winner by sweeping through 6 matches front-to-back, and the man that will carry his title into the first-ever BTE-equivalent Blitz show, P.U.R.E, has selected none other than Apeirogone
to be the third challenger to his Pure Title!
For months, the Medicinal Magician has silently watched as people have lauded the accomplishments of his Ark brethren against the Infinity Ace. Cactus Mike almost taking the man to a draw. Code Blue ending his 1347-day undefeated singles streak. Kaze Tanaka sending him into retirement. But what about him? What about the final member of The Ark? What about the licensed medical practitioner that’s on the best run of his entire life despite the constant demons rattling around inside his brain? They’ve all had their chance, so why can’t he? Forced to wrestled with the “can never beat a veteran legend” stigma for years, he’s decided to put down his stethoscope and declare no longer! Even after there’s no reading on his ECG and 0 of his 206 bones have been reduced to dust, he wants to the world to remember his name!
So, it begs the question – What happens when one of the greatest of all-time steps outside his comfort zone and into the kingdom of another man to fight for only one of two championships he doesn’t have hung up on his wall? Will Apeirogone avenge his previous losses to The Ark by taking away the prize that breathed life back into the soul of the Doctor in his first-ever BTE-style main event? Or will Logan Wright silence the critics until the end of time, keeping his undefeated streak extending back to January, keeping his unbeaten Blitz Big 4 streak, and keeping his Pure Championship by felling a legend? It’s the Final Boss of Blitz versus the Final Boss of FB to close out P.U.R.E! Prompt: Book Kenny Omega until Double or Nothing 2024 (Max 1000 Words)
All bookings are due on June 3rd at 11PM EST
, so don’t delay on those. Fourteen star-studded matches on the card featuring 39 unique competitors – the most there’s ever been on any FBE show in history – let’s make this a memorable first P.U.R.E, lads! Pure rules.
2023.05.28 23:17 volkanos The Zhilnn
MAP ORIGIN MYTH
Young Titi had just celebrated her seventh nameday. She couldn’t help but feel happy about her newly braided hair. Soon she would look just like her big sister Jani, who already had two braids on her brown hair, she cheerfully thought. As Titi’s prancing drew prints upon the soft yellow sand, the setting sun slowly approached the serene waves. The fishing canoes were just returning to the village’s pier, the strong armed villagers taking the catch of the day back to their hovels. The impending dusk meaned it was time for Titi to return home. Father had always beaten her if she arrived after dusk. It was dangerous to be out at night, he would always say, the hill people could take her away and she would never again see her mommy or her little brother Kiru. But Titi wasn’t all upset about returning home. Afterall, today she would hear granpa Koyo’s stories! The old man could barely see anymore, but it felt to Titi that the older and blinder he got, the better he became at storytelling.
As she returned back home, Titi’s mommy was already cooking today’s meal. By the smell of it, the hovel’s wood-carved bowls would soon be filled with fish stew, enriched with sourghum and yesterday’s leftover horse meat. Titi didn’t enjoy stringy horse meat, but her belly already rumbled nonetheless – most often she wouldn’t have as rich a meal as today’s. Her rambling was soon interrupted by the frail voice she so fondly remembered: “Titi, you young pony legged brat!” As granpa Koyo caught Titi’s attention, she could see that the old man was already sitting cross-legged by the hearth, her little brother Kiru at his lap. “Come by the fire with your granpa. I have a story to tell you, one only your big sister knows about!”
Titi couldn’t hide her excitement as she quickly scrambled to her granpa’s side. Her little brother Kiru sneezed as she got close – he always did it when she played with her uncle’s horses at the afternoon. “I know what it is! It’s the one that tells about the big hairy red horse, isn’t it?” Titi had heard her big sister Jani bragging about not being scared of it once. She turned to Jani, who was helping her mommy prepare today’s meal. “It’s this one, isn’t it?”
Her sister didn’t even look back as she aloofly answered: “Shut up Titi, I’m trying to keep the fire going!” Titi could never understand her sister’s apparent disinterest of granpa’s stories, she thought, abashed. “Granpa! Please, tell us the story!” Titi’s excitement quickly replaced her momentary sorrow.
It took a few heartbeats for granpa Koyo to answer: “Oh, little one! You shall hear the story of how our very people came to be, of how Great Zhi brought our ancestors across the world to this blessed land. Sit tight and listen!”
Several generations before our current time, our people dwelled in a cold, harsh land where food was hard to get. They didn’t have houses back than, so they slept on temporary animal hide shelters along their seasonal hunting grounds. Making a living out of the steppe was strenuous, with game and wild herbs ever harder to find. Many children starved, their mothers’ dry bossoms not able to sustein their ever growing hunger. Conflict with other local tribes was commonplace, turning the already tough life into a waking nightmare. Long did this suffering last, until a previously unbeknownst hero revealed himself under a moonlit night.
Zhi was his name, and he came to our people riding his great white horse, whom he named Jahnn. His unblemished skin, long sky-dark hair and strong build immediately set him aside from common folk. Most impressive of all, Zhi could speak our language, and so he began teaching the ancestors about the Way of the Horse. Such as Zhi’s prowess that in a fortnight our people already mastered horse breeding. Hunting was no longer essential as before, and the folk cheered their newfound plentitude.
Yet, all was not well, for Zhi also came with dread news. The malignant red horse, Araw, and its evil spirit, Makk, were bound to come and bring impending disease, hunger and death. Zhi revealed that he had come to usher our ancestors to a land of plenty, where the sun shone bright and where the grass was green, a land where Araw could not ever reach. There, they’d be safe from the evil spirit’s influence, and would be able to prosper for a hundred generations. Scared, our ancestors were divided about Zhi’s heed. Many, convinced that Zhi had already shown them all they needed to prosper on the steppe, decided not to come. A few, scared of the dreadful tale, prepared to journey away.
The journey was tough, as Zhi had warned. Our folk crossed uneven ground were horses would break their hooves and men would stumble. Women cried out as their children grew exhausted of the journey. Hunger was once again commonplace, despite mastery of the Way of the Horse. Was Zhi wrong? When doubt was about to boil into open anger, a lone wayfarer crossed their path, his furs and shoes ragged, his skin covered in bruises and pustules. Such was his stench that many couldn’t bare his proximity. His nearness revealed him as one of our own. The red horse had come and the man was the only survivor of those who were left behind. It went exactly as Zhi had warned.
Grief overcame our ancestors, doubt and anger now replaced by melancoly. If not for Zhi’s sheer determination, our people would have given up their own hope, slowly dwindling away until the evil spirit finished them. Zhi’s promisses of a new life, however, ignited renewed hope on our folk’s hearts. Zhi’s leadership was of paramount importance back than, such that our ancestors adopted his name to refer to themselves as a people. And thus did our ancestors arrive at where we are today, the land we call Zhilnnia. As soon as they reached the open coastal plains, they sighted what none had never laid gaze before. The endless salt water expanse that we today call the ocean spread before them, lit brightly by a warm sun. And, surprising everyone, there were people living by the sandy beaches. Zhi told our folk that these men, women and children who lived by the sea and called themselves the Illn were friendly folk who would teach them the Way of the Water. In turn, our ancestors would have to teach them their Way of the Horse.
It was as if two long departed friends met each other again. Gifts were exchanged, and one side showed fascinating crafts to the other. Zhi arranged marriages between sons and daughters from both folk, and in a few generations the two folks were indistinguishable from one another. With Zhi and Illn together as one, the Zhilnn were born. Zhi’s mission was complete and as with his appeareance, he soon vanished without a trace under a moonlit sky.
Titi was fascinated by the story. So much that she lost herself in her thoughts again. How handsome must Zhi have been? Her rambling was interrupted abruptly by a loud cough, a sigh and by her granpa falling atop her. Startled, she recomposed herself, lifting herself up from the ground as her little brother Kiru cried aloud. Titi looked around and saw that her mommy, her big sister Jani, and even her recently arrived papa were all staring at her granpa Koyo, concern of their faces. It was then that titi saw his sightless gaze locked into her, his mouth frozen in a perpetual last gasp.
“It was his last story” her mama said, tears sprouting on ther brown eyes.
“Quickly, we must bring Fivi in” her father seemed distant “Before his bones cool and his spirit can’t reach the stars” He hastily left their hovel, intent on seeking the shaman.
Titi was scared. What was happening? She could only cry as her mother embraced her. Even Jani seemed shaken. Her sobbing eventualy subdued as Titi entered a troubled sleep, dreaming about the lonely wayfarer with her granpa Koyo’s face. OBJECTIVE INFORMATION
The Zhilnn are a pastoral-agricultural folk, with a bit of maritime tradition mixed in. They don’t master any of the three particulary well, being well-rounded. Zhilnn villages are spread across Xhantea’s coastal plains, being more densily present at river estuaries, where fishing, pastures and farmland are easiest. Some villages especialize more in one aspect than other. The Zhilnn are prone to trading, being on the way of possible maritime trade routes across Xanthea and Gorgonea. Raiding by their nearby cousins, the Chiim, puts their expansion in check. Zhilnn villages are led by local chieftains, who rule under a clan-like disorganized structure. Shamans, usually female, are respected mainly because of the Zhillnn’s burrial traditions (the dead are put into burial urns and laid to rest in funeral mounds), but also as healers, hearbalists and spiritualist guidance. The Zhilnn believe in spirits, good or bad, with the Red Horse (Araw) being the most dreadful, while Zhi and his White Horse are the holliest. Zhilln Villages are small, usually no more than a few hundred people at best. ADITIONAL TECHS
Key techs: Celestial navigation
Main techs: Advanced Carpentry, Sewn Plank Hulls
Minor techs: Piers & Warfs, Oar locks, Steering Oars/Basic Rudders, Boat Type: Plank Canoe, Harpoons
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2023.05.28 22:08 CIAHerpes My father always kept the shed locked. Today, I found out why (part 1)
Growing up, I remember it all vividly: any time my friends or I got too close to the shed, my dad would come out hollering and yelling, telling us to stay away from there and that it was no place for kids. He told me he had expensive tools and dangerous chemicals stored there. As a child, I didn’t question it. It was just one of those things. In my mind, I had been born into a world where the sun rises in the east, breakfast is the first meal of the day and the shed stays locked. They were all true, self-evident and simply the way things existed in my young mind.
But as I grew older and eventually moved off to college, I began to question the shed more. My father still wouldn’t let me look in there. In fact, he kept the sole key on his person at all times. Even when he slept, he would keep the key in his pocket.
Then, during my second semester at the nearby state university, I got a call that every son or daughter dreads. I was attending a lecture on anatomy when my phone lit up, ringing silently in the great, crowded hall. Looking down, I saw it was my brother’s number. I went outside, lighting up a cigarette and answering it.
“Hello?” I said. “Gil?” My brother answered immediately.
“Luke, thank God you answered,” he said. “It’s dad. He’s being taken to the hospital. He had some sort of medical emergency. Can you meet us there? In maybe twenty-five minutes?” I said I would, hanging up. I grabbed my stuff in the lecture hall and made my way to my car. Twenty-two minutes later, I pulled into the hospital.
It was too late, however. My father had died of a heart attack on the way. He was declared dead on arrival.
We ended up inheriting the house. Our mother had died of breast cancer ten years earlier, so Gil and I were the last two of the Mortin bloodline. My brother was a good guy, though somewhat of a waste case, constantly smoking weed and dropping acid. He had a tendency to travel out far across the country without notice, moving around to see nature or go to music festivals. That is, when he had the money. And since he worked as a freelance writer, he was often broke.
He really wanted to get at the money dad had left us. He wanted the money from the house most of all. He told me repeatedly that it would be enough to tide him over until he got a footing in the writing industry, that he just needed to make a name for himself and then the money would start rolling in. He had his heart set on it. He would write anything that he could make money off of, from horror stories to romances, short stories to novels, even technical manuals or freelance journalism articles. As we walked to the house together for the first time in months, he repeated this mantra to me again: “Just enough to tide me over, Luke…”
“I think you’re probably going to burn through the money that Dad left you,” I said. “Why don’t you get a real job and just write on the side?” He gave me a sideways look.
“Did you see Hunter S. Thompson getting a ‘real job’ while just writing on the side?” he asked. I nodded.
“Yeah, he was a journalist…” I began as we walked into the house, but we both stopped simultaneously when we saw what was on the coffee table. It was all of Dad’s possessions he had when he died. They were placed neatly in a line- his wallet, his phone, his car and house key, some cash, and last of all, a little shed key on a thin, leather chain.
“What do you think is really in that shed?” I asked. Gil looked at me, pale and wide-eyed in the dark living room.
“I don’t really… I don’t know if I want to find out,” Gil said, whispering as if he were in a church- or a funeral home. I put my hand on his shoulder and shook him gently.
“Of course we need to find out,” I said. “You and I own this property now. We should go look right now.” He breathed in sharply.
“No, no, don’t be an idiot,” Gil whispered. “It’s dark now. In the morning, we can go together. In the morning. You have waited twenty years to find out, I think you can wait a few more hours.” But there was something pleading in his voice, something scared and child-like. It reminded me of when I was scared as a little boy at bedtime, telling my dad there were monsters in the closet, and he would go to open up the door, and I’d tell him to stop, that they’re going to hurt him if he opens that door. But he would open the door and there would be no monsters in there. Surely, it was the same here. Gil would see, and for that matter, so would I. There were no monsters in there.
This all happened from yesterday to this morning. We ended up leaving that place together a few hours ago, bloodied and bruised and injured, after being trapped inside all night.
The day before it started, Gil stayed up late downstairs, watching TV and smoking a joint. He made himself a night-cap from my father’s liquor cabinet, pouring some Jack Daniels and ice in a cup with some Coke and sipping it slowly. I stayed with him for a while, talking.
We talked about the good times we had with Dad, about going hiking with him at the Green Mountains, or traveling to New York City with him to see the museums. I thought about how much I really missed him, and a knot formed in my throat. I quickly blinked my eyes to try to get the tears to go away.
Eventually, I went to sleep in the guest bedroom. Gil stayed downstairs, sleeping on the couch in front of the TV. I heard the faint hum of it from upstairs, the canned laughter of whatever comedy he was watching, the acerbic tone of the lead characters as they delivered one witty joke after another. I fell asleep to it, the voices blending into a sarcastic, hissing whisper in my ear.
And then I was floating, bodiless, looking down on a dark cornfield with ravens staring at me. The voice was bodiless, too, sounding like it came from right behind me, but when I turned, nothing was there.
“In the halls of our fathers, everyone is dead,” it whispered mockingly. “You’ll be dead soon too, if you get curious. Some doors are locked for a reason. Some doors should stay locked.”
I woke up suddenly. Something was wrong. I heard Gil yelling. I fumbled around in the dark for the lamp, groggily checking the time. 4:17 AM. Flinging the comforters off, I ran downstairs.
Gil was sleeping on the couch, still as a corpse, and quiet as one too. I looked around confusedly. Where was the screaming coming from? I followed the noise out back. I looked at the shed, and my blood ran cold as I heard another long cry come from inside. I walked across the dirt yard in my slippers, not wanting to get any closer but walking forwards nonetheless. Part of me wondered if I was still dreaming, but the chill air against my sweaty face felt real enough.
The screaming from the shed was not in words. It was a long, drawn-out, painful shriek. It was the shriek of a mother who just lost her only child in a war zone, or the yell of someone doused with gasoline and burned alive, but amplified into an ear-splitting cacophony. I had the key in my pocket. I reached for it with shaking hands, pulling it out, slowly approaching the shed.
Then someone grabbed my shoulder. I jumped, whirling around with clenched fists, ready to fight. Then I saw it was Gil.
“You nearly gave me a heart attack,” I said through clenched teeth. “What the hell is wrong with you?” He put his finger to his lips, the universal signal for silence. Then he leaned close to my ear and whispered.
“If you open that shed now, we will both die,” he said quietly and calmly, as if he were just stating the weather for tomorrow. “Put the key away and go back to bed. You never want to open it in the dark. Never.”
“What do you know about it?” I whispered back, shooting glances over my shoulder at the shed. The screaming still came, though slower now, maybe one heart-rending shriek every minute or so. Part of me was glad there were no neighbors for half a mile in each direction, and that made me want to laugh. There was probably some horrific animal in there that would rip me apart if it got the chance, and I was thinking about noise complaints.
“Tomorrow,” Gil repeated, gently taking my arm and leading me back into the house. I sat next to him in the living room, pouring myself a gin and tonic, sipping it slowly as the screams from behind the house mixed with the canned laughter of the TV show, wondering what kind of man my father really was.
I woke on the couch, an empty glass falling out of my hand onto the cushion. Light streamed in through the windows. Gil was nowhere to be found. I looked back and forth, then heard the sizzling of food from the kitchen.
Stumbling in, I saw he had prepared a massive breakfast of bacon, sausages, corned beef hash, eggs Benedict with Hollandaise sauce, Texas toast, orange juice and coffee. He was smoking a joint with the windows opened, occasionally sending a grim look out the back of the house towards the shed. I sat down, pouring myself some coffee and grabbing milk and sugar to mix in.
“Who is all this food for?” I asked. He kept staring out the window. “Hey!” He turned suddenly, his face looking pale and drawn.
“I said, who is all this food for?” I repeated. He looked around, smiling.
“Just for us. Why not? I figure you will need the energy today, and so will I,” he said cryptically. He sat down across from me, pouring himself coffee and orange juice and grabbing a plateful of meat, toast and eggs. I did the same, giving him occasional glances.
“What did Dad tell you?” I asked, pouring maple syrup on my sausages and bacon and chugging an entire cup of coffee in one long swallow. It burned my throat, but the rising heat and caffeine made me feel instantly better and more awake. Gil sighed heavily.
“Not much, to tell you the truth,” he said. “He was really drunk one time when you were away at college, a couple months ago. He was drinking more and more before he died, like something was weighing on him, something he wanted to forget. Well, anyway, I was sitting down here with him, watching those documentaries he used to love with him, and during a commercial, he just started talking about the shed.
“‘Now boy,’ he said to me, ‘I know you probably have a few questions for me. I probably should have told you and your brother about it a long time ago, but it is something I don’t like to talk about. Out of sight, out of mind, I guess. I think talking about it tends to wake it up.’
“‘Wake up what?’ I said. Dad was quiet for a long time, just staring at me. Then he leaned close to me and whispered something strange.
“‘The stairs,’ he said. ‘They’re not normal, son. Sometimes they go down below the shed to a… Well, I guess it is just an empty sub-floor. Just a plain, swept dirt basement below the shed. But I never built any such sub-floor, and it wasn’t here when I bought the house, and it isn’t on the plans either. If that was it, then who would care? Hah, a free storage place, people would be happy, right?’ I nodded, grinning back at Dad. He seemed to have a glimmer of his old self for a second, happy and free. But then his face darkened again.
“‘But lots of times, boy, those stairs do not lead to a sub-floor. One time, they led down to a white room covered in blood, with bright fluorescent lights flickering all over the walls and ceiling. And there was a little girl down there, dancing among all the blood, jumping and twirling in her little blue dress, little ballerina slippers on her feet, and all the skin on her face peeled off. She was just a bloody, grinning skull. And when she saw me on the spiral steps in the corner, she stopped dancing and just stared. The lights began to turn off, everything went dark, and I ran, my boy, I ran faster than I have ever run in my life. I felt little hands grabbing at me as I made my way up the last stair and slammed that shed door behind me. I locked it as something fought to get out, something that felt far stronger than any child. And that was just one time.
“‘It’s worse at night. That’s when the real dangerous ones come out. I don’t know how the stairs work, son, and I don’t think I ever really want to. Maybe if you’re lucky, you’ll never have to deal with them. Maybe I’ll find a way to destroy them before I die. Aye, maybe…’” Gil stopped speaking, deep in thought and remembrance. I took another sip of juice and ate some bacon before responding.
“So you’re telling me Dad went batshit crazy before he died?” I asked. Gil shook his head quickly.
“He wasn’t crazy, Luke,” he said simply. “At least, I don’t think he was. If he was, the stairs probably made him that way. Do you really think that you were just hearing a fox or something caught in the shed last night? Those screams sounded human. We both know that was something unnatural. But I wouldn’t worry if I were you. If you need proof, we’ll have plenty after today- assuming you still want to go into the shed.” And after we finished eating, with no fanfare or delay, we did. I grabbed the key, and Gil and I went out side by side, scared but not showing it, ready to finally see for ourselves the mystery that had haunted our family for decades.
We walked through the hard-packed dirt yard, looking down the grassy field behind the house to the rolling hills that stretched as far as the eye could see. They began to grow blue, pale and fuzzy near the horizon. It was a beautiful place to live, and hard to imagine something so evil might be right in the middle of it.
The shed loomed up ahead of us, boards tightly hammered together and freshly painted a dark red color. The shingles on the small roof all looked relatively new, and the door was expensive and sturdy. I stood in front of the door, listening for the sounds of any movement, but there was nothing. I fumbled in my pocket for the key, pulling it out, looking at Gil who stood close by my side. Then I shoved it in the lock and opened the door.
The shed was dark, as if a curtain of shadow fell across the open door. I stuck my head in, feeling around the side for a lightswitch. And that was when something grabbed my hand. I screamed, ready to pull my hand out and run, and then I felt the lightswitch on the wall. I flicked it on quickly. There was no one in there. Shaking, I turned to Gil.
“Something grabbed me,” I whispered. He nodded, unsurprised. Then we walked in the shed together.
The walls inside were all covered with plates of sheet metal. Every square inch of the shed was reinforced with steel, including the roof, which had a flat pane of metal going straight across the shed, welded to the four that covered the walls. Only the floor was unprotected. It was just a plain dirt floor with a hole in the center.
Looking closer at the protective structure of the shed, I saw deep claw and gouge marks raking the metal’s surface, even those on the bottom of the ceiling eight feet above the floor. Something had clearly been in here and wanted very badly to get out.
I inched closer to the hole in the floor, which took up most of the floor of the shed. It was at least ten feet wide. Looking down, I saw spiraling steps, descending in a clockwise fashion as far down as the light extended. I found a small rock on the ground outside, came back in and dropped it down the center of the stairway. I listened for it to hit bottom, counting the seconds on my watch. After about thirty seconds, I realized it wasn’t going to. Maybe it was too far down to hear when the stone connected.
I looked over at Gil. He was standing as near to the door as he could get, looking like he would rather be anywhere else in the world. I gave him high marks for courage, though. There was something wrong in here, and I could feel it. Outside, it was warm and a fresh breeze blew the smell of flowers and pines through the yard. But in here, it was cold and oppressive. A freezing chill seemed to come from the hole in the floor, spiraling up with the stairs and running over my body, sending a feeling like ice running up and down my back.
“Do you want to go first, or should I?” I said, gesturing to the hole. Gil stared at me as if I had gone mad, his eyes widening.
“Why in the fuck should either of us go?” he said, raising his hands and using them to gesticulate wildly as he often did when he was upset. I shrugged.
“This is our property now,” I said. “We need to at least know what’s on it, don’t you think?” But there was another reason too. It was sheer curiosity, and a desire to prove to myself that there was nothing supernatural going on here, no monster in the closet, just the overactive imagination of an old man. Gil sighed.
“Fine,” he said. “I’ll go. Go grab two flashlights and Dad’s gun. Maybe some extra batteries. Some extra magazines too. Better safe than sorry, after all…”
We both went inside the house together, leaving the shed door wide open, and that was when, I believe, something got out. And then the killings in town began.
We descended the stairs slowly. They were stone, slick in some places. There was no guard rail or any protective barrier, which made my heart beat a little faster. I liked something to hold onto. If I took a tumble on these stairs, I might keep falling forever.
We heard strange sounds from below periodically, but when we shone our lights down there, we couldn't see anything. Echoes rose around us, sounding at one point like kids playing a game of hide and seek, at another like the howling of a wolf. Strange squeaks and clicks would also arise intermittently from the shaft below us, and then stop as quickly as they had started.
The noises got louder as we descended dozens of stories, then hundreds. It seemed like the stairs would just keep going on forever, until we hit the mantle of the Earth and got burned up. Then a door appeared, painted a chipped blue with a fading daisy on the center of it. I looked at Gil, then swung it open.
Beyond it, a hallway with fluorescent lights extended as far as the eye could see. Countless rooms went off it to the left and right. The lights flickered on and off, sending portions of the hallway into darkness. The floor was falling apart in many places, with strange molds and fungi growing out of the wood. White and black molds battled for space, forming huge colonies that were bigger than my shoe. I walked forward, putting my weight gingerly on the floorboard. It creaked slightly and felt wet under my shoe, yet it held my weight.
“Come on,” I said to Gil, who followed closely behind. As soon as we had walked a few steps down the hall, the door slammed shut by itself behind us. I jumped and turned, pulling out the gun reflexively. Gil put a hand on my shoulder, pushing the gun back down.
“It’s OK,” he said. I was breathing hard, my heart hammering in my chest. Maybe that was why I didn’t hear the counting at first.
But as we walked down the decayed hallway, the lights turning on and off above us with every step, I realized that someone was counting, and it had been going on for a while. It sounded like the voice of a little girl.
“Forty… thirty-nine… thirty-eight…” she said, counting off the seconds. I heard giggling from the rooms around us, but I couldn’t see anyone. We kept walking forward, but that counting was getting on my nerves- not least because I couldn’t for the life of me tell where it was coming from.
We checked the rooms to the left and the right. There were broken tables, old office equipment and chairs in nearly all of them. Some of them had fish tanks, but instead of fish, they had plumes of multi-colored molds growing over the top of them, or, in one case, a dead and dried-out turtle.
“...one… ready or not, here I come!” the girl’s voice screamed gleefully, and that was when all the lights went out at once. We quickly fumbled for our flashlights, turning them on at the same time. I had the gun in one hand crisscrossed with the flashlight in the other, a trick I had seen used in cop shows. Gil had a ten-inch bowie knife in one hand, which he had just removed from the massive scabbard he had it in around his leg. In his other hand, he held the flashlight, which he frantically shone back and forth, up and down.
“Geez, calm down with that thing,” I said. “You’re going to make me dizzy.”
“Something’s coming,” Gil whispered, a note of dread in his voice. “Don’t you hear it?” I stopped, listening hard. Indeed, I heard footsteps nearing, small suppressed giggles, the swishing of a dress. My flashlight illuminated a pale face, a little boy sneaking a peak out of the nearest room. He was filthy, covered in black soot with torn clothing and what looked like blood caked into his hair. He looked up at us quickly then withdrew into the room. For the first time, I felt genuinely scared. Now we could be certain we were being watched.
“Hey!” I whispered, running into the room after him. Gil followed close behind me. The footsteps seemed to be right next to us now, but I looked around, not seeing anyone. Then a blur of movement passed by as a little girl ran over to the little boy, where he was curled in the corner under a broken folding table, crying and shaking with terror.
“Found you!” she said. I shone my light directly at her back, seeing a pale blue dress, but I couldn’t see her face.
“Get away from that kid!” I yelled. She ignored me, bending down quickly, and before I knew what had happened, she had ripped the boy’s throat out with her teeth. She turned to look at us, and I saw that her face had been cut off, and now only a grinning skull remained. It was covered in a thin sheen of blood, and two tiny white pinpoints of light seemed to glow inside the empty sockets of her eyes. With her teeth full of flesh and gristle and fresh rivulets of blood running down her skeletal mouth, she continued to cry, “Found you! Found you! Found you!”
Without hesitation, I shot her in the shoulder. She fell back a half-step, turning to look at me with that skeletal grin, then spun around and continued eating the little boy. He was still alive, choking on his own blood, his huge eyes moving over to me as he died, as if accusing me of being the cause of all this. The sound of his last gurgling breaths were the only sounds now. I shot her again, but she wouldn’t go down. A blossom of blood began to spread outwards on her back where I had shot her, but she showed no pain. Gil grabbed my shoulder tightly.
“We need to get out of here,” he said through gritted teeth. I nodded. We ran back to the door we had come in through, but it was locked tight. The lights were still off. I told Gil to take a step back, then tried shooting at the lock. The bullet ricocheted crazily as if I had shot a reinforced army tank rather than a plain wooden doorway. Next we tried kicking it open, but it was as if it were fused to the wall.
I turned to look at him, and the truth passed between us in a glimpse. To get out, we would have to go farther in, where there were likely even worse things waiting for us.
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2023.05.28 20:40 eulalie_pop Logan made Succession a circle, not a line, and we're about to watch it end where it began
So I’ve been down the rabbit hole
, trying to chase every off-the-cuff reference, stray allegory, allusion, comparison, and tangent. I’m going to need you to bear (hug) with me for a bit because I think I’ve stumbled on some truly insane parallels between this show and the myriad of references it makes and it will take a lot of text to justify to you that I'm not crazy (or that I am, but at least I do my research).
This is a show that employs a ton of intertextuality and what the poet T.S. Eliot (someone quoted frequently throughout the series) calls “the mythic method”: essentially using historical, literary, and mythological allusions to draw parallels between characters on the show and characters throughout history (real and imagined).
This method helps the audience to build both conscious and unconscious associations with each of the characters and, ultimately, underscores the Roys’ (and humanity’s) damning commitment to making the same mistakes over and over again. The show seems to draw a lot from Greek mythology, Arthurian legend, biblical parables, Shakespearean tragedy, and modernist poetry (among many other things).
These networks of symbolism span from the earliest recorded history to modern celebrity culture and yet they reveal frighteningly unchanged elements in the stories they tell. The parallels of these references throughout the show serve to highlight the cyclical (the illusion of progress) and deterministic (the illusion of free will) nature of existence.
While I will be dipping in and out of the existing references, I want to call particular attention to the poetry of the aforementioned T.S. Eliot (who champions the mythic method) and John Berryman’s poem Dream Song 29
because I believe much of their work has served as a foundation for characters.
In the show, Frank makes mention of his poem “The Long Song Of J Alfred Prufrock” more than once. Outside of the show, Matthew McFayden (the actor who plays Tom) references the same poem to describe his character. Jeremy Strong (the actor who plays Kendall) says Eliot’s work The Four Quartets
is a huge inspiration to his acting and character. A line from this particular work did strike me as being quite on the nose, which is why I continued to comb the poem for more (which it does deliver on):
"In my beginning is my end. In succession Houses rise and fall, crumble, are extended, Are removed, destroyed, restored, or in their place Is an open field, or a factory, or a by-pass. Old stone to new building, old timber to new fires, Old fires to ashes, and ashes to the earth Which is already flesh, fur and faeces, Bone of man and beast, cornstalk and leaf."
This will probably be a monster of a post, so I will attempt to break down the following sections between poetic parallels, visual and dialogic symbolism of eternal recurrence, and an exploration of the historical and mythological allusions. Ultimately, I believe all of these clues point to the overwhelming conclusion that we will end where we began, in some way or another. Circles & Cycles: Endless Recurrence & The Futility Of Progress
The show toys a lot with the philosophical concept of eternal recurrence, which postulates that “time repeats itself in an infinite loop, and that exactly the same events will continue to occur in exactly the same way, over and over again, for eternity.”
These eternal loops are symbolized visually with mirrors, water, fractal reflections; in the “uh-huh” and “mhmms” of repeated, near-palindromic dialogue; and in the show events that echo and repeat: in-air death scares, asynchronous business deals, family betrayal, weddings, retreats, implosions, family reunions, trauma bonding, baptism, funerals, etc.
In this understanding of time, there is no linear progress — or even progress at all. Time is cyclical. People are cyclical. As are the events that transpire. This is particularly interesting in a show like Succession whose title alone implies the phrase “line of succession.” Viewers would expect to see what comes next — who comes next — but as Logan himself yells, “Nothing is a line. Everything is moving all the time.”
Logan consistently evokes the circle shape in his speech, “Put a circle around him” he tells Shiv. “We’ve been circling for an hour, tell them we’re out of gas,” he complains in a moment of grim foreshadowing on his plane. “Crawl in a circle and close your eyes,” he shouts during the game of Boar on the Floor.
And he is the bright, burning nebulous center of this circle. He’s described as “carr[ying] his gravity. He's not a man, he's a f*cking planet.” And the people around him are described like satellites and moons. Characters exist in his orbit. And every complete orbit (or “revolution”) leaves characters in exactly the same place. There are motions, there is the illusion of progress, but the result is the same. Eliot again:
“every attempt Is a wholly new start, and a different kind of failure”
With this understanding, the show may just end where it begins. Not only in “nothing” happening, but in repeating the same events ad infinitum
: A kid tries to take over the family business, they try to align with their siblings, they eventually backstab their siblings, they end out in the cold, and then they reunite, swear not to do it again, until it all repeats.
As most of us are aware, the show has made very direct mention of the John Berryman poem Dream Song 29
. The names of the past three season finales (as well as the name of the upcoming fourth) are all direct excerpts from the poem, which deals with grief and sadness and the guilt of killing someone when you can’t even confirm there’s been someone killed at all.
Berryman consistently wrote about the guilt and grief he experienced from his father’s suicide. Berryman himself would eventually end up taking his own life, which on its own is a brutal reminder of the cycles of trauma. It also doesn’t feel insignificant that Berryman jumped off a bridge.
What’s really interesting is how each subsequent finale is named for a line that comes earlier and earlier in the poem. It also toys with this concept that things come full circle and end where they begin. This echoes Eliot’s essential thesis of the poem:
“What we call the beginning is often the end And to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from.”
But while the speaker of the poem comes to realize he has not murdered “nobody” by the poem’s last line; Kendall, moving through the poem backward, must reckon with the idea that he may have killed somebody even if they were a “nobody.” And while we may encounter this as a moment in which Kendall is genuinely despairing over his season 1 inadvertent murder, I believe we are far more likely to see Kendall embrace this moment.
We see "nobody" and "no one mentioned" a lot when it comes to Logan, who believes most people are "fungible as f*ck," and "pygmies" while he's "1,000 feet tall." When Kendall is involved in the accident, we see him echo "NRPI" or no real person involved.
The reason Kendall couldn’t live up to his father’s expectations is that he couldn’t be the killer his father needed him to be (even if his morality or basis of being a good person is off). This retroactive movement through the poem could be Kendall realizing he is, in fact, the killer his father always needed him to be, enabling him to take the necessary steps of seizing the crown on his own. Allegories & Allusions: Mythic Comparisons & Determinism
It’s Shakespearean, like Roman says, “I kill Kendall, get crowned king, like we’re in f*cking Hamlet or something.” But it’s not just Hamlet
, it’s King Lear, King Richard III
. And it’s not just Shakespeare, it’s Oedipus Rex
, The Odyssey
, The Waste Land
, Thus Spoke Zarathustra
, Cronus devouring his children, Romulus killing Remus, Noah cursing his child for looking upon him naked.
The concept of the monomyth was popularized in "The Hero With 1000 Faces" and discusses throughout history, throughout different times and places, different cultures, different religions, different people have developed stories with relatively similar fundamental elements. The show is rife with allusions of stories that follow that same thread. Logan is Cronus who is King Lear who is Romulus who is who is. This is another form of endless recurrence: the inability to break the cycle. Or, in a very Hamlet reference, "maybe the poison drips through."
The themes of patricide, fratricide, and incest in particular are rampant. Rhea (like Rhea Jarell) in Greek mythology is both sister and consort to Cronus. Both are part of the first generation of aptly named Titan gods. Cronus overthrew his father Uranus and learns his children are fated to overthrow him. So he eats them as soon as they are born. Logan does refer to people as food a surprising amount throughout the show, varying from red meat to vegetables. He outright calls for blood sacrifice, which evokes the language of the gods.
Logan is referenced specifically as one of the last real American titans in his obituaries and eulogies. The language around him is frequently god-like. He's known as "the big man" or even "the big man upstairs." Tom tells Greg to "be his representative here on earth"; Roman asks the audience, "who is going to climb Mt. Olympus and be the next Dr. Zeus?" And that's where the myth gets interesting.
The only child not to be eaten is Zeus, who does end up killing his father and was surprisingly interested in marrying his mother. We're familiar with this plot formula through a different archetype: the Oedipus Complex, which we see referenced in the show with “Oedipus Roy,” “Oedipussy,” and “stabbing my eyes out.” The same story is repeated again in Hamlet with brother killing and brother and son yelling at his mother about her milky breasts (something Roman does to Shiv more than once). In the show when Logan says to Roman, “You may want to f*ck your mother but I don’t.” We know none of these stories end well. As Connor muses, “It’s not right to kill one’s father; history teaches us that.”
In the story of Romulus and Remus (whose mother’s name is also Rhea), the two brothers were initially chased out of their city as potential threats to the King (yet again). They were left by the river to die and were saved by the river god (important). After successfully overthrowing the kingdom that left them for dead, they agree to found a new city. They ultimately disagreed on which hill to found it and decided to have a bird-watching competition to see who could see the most omens indicating they had divine approval for the hill. Remus says he saw 6 auspicious birds but Romulus claims to see 12. Romulus kills Remus over this.
It should remind you of Logan visiting his childhood home with Ewan: “I saw a mistle thrush at the bandstand,” and the log book he kept as a child of birds he “saw” that Ewan would cross out if he didn’t believe him. It may also echo a part of The Four Quartets
, “Other echoes/ Inhabit the garden. Shall we follow?/ Quick, said the bird, find them, find them,/ Round the corner. Through the first gate,/ Into our first world, shall we follow/ The deception of the thrush?"
There is much to be said about the themes of warring brothers. Also the themes of fathers worried their children would one day overthrow them who take action to thwart or murder their children, which inadvertently sets into motion the very outcome they fear. It happens over and over again in stories old and new. As Panhandle Pete says, “I push him, he pushes me, and around and around we go.” Or as Eliot puts it, “that the wheel may turn and still / Be forever still.”
Much of these works touch on a sort of determinism, or the slow crushing reality that every action you take — even if that action is an attempt to thwart your fate — will ultimately lead to the same inevitable ending. This is the illusion of free will on top of the illusion of progress. And Logan, in fearing his children would usurp him (and also disparaging his children for not being able to), set into motion his own death and his own messy succession.
It’s also a reminder that the greatest men in life are all the same when laid to rest:
"O dark dark dark. They all go into the dark, The vacant interstellar spaces, the vacant into the vacant, The captains, merchant bankers, eminent men of letters, The generous patrons of art, the statesmen and the rulers, Distinguished civil servants, chairmen of many committees, Industrial lords and petty contractors, all go into the dark…" Structure & Symbolism: Water As Rebirth & Destruction
The show has very much been structured around Kendall, and we watch him move through bodies of water with what feels like different symbolism each time. Is he drowning, is he reborn? We witness Kendall at his lowest point face down in a pool and at one of his highest, splashing into the Pacific ocean. We watch a man drown. We watch Logan beg Kendall for water as they walk through Adrien Brody’s maze. We watch Roman clamor for water at the funeral when he needs to calm down. Poetry has long played with this life and death dynamic in water, like the sailors dying of thirst in Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s The Rime of the Ancient Mariner
“Water, water, every where,. And all the boards did shrink;. Water, water, every where,. Nor any drop to drink. The very deep did rot: O Christ!”
This sub has noted Kendall’s connection to water, which has been represented over and over visually. But once you realize every metaphor, analogy, and simile he uses is water-based, you can’t unhear it. He calls his father “a tsunami of corruption” and describes things “as more precious than water”; he calls deals “choppy” and “dead in the water,” and asks to “help steady the ship”; he offers to “row back” on business deals, says timing is “high tide,” and that he has “bigger fish to fry.”
Logan is apt to use similar water symbolism, even telling Shiv that she’s marrying a man “fathoms” beneath her. As Rhea tells him, fearful of his own monstrosity, “I can’t see the bottom of the pool. I don’t know if you care about anything. It scares me.” ATN’s major scandal was “death cruises.” Even his operating nemesis is called “Sandy.”
In fact, there is mention of all elements and seasons — in particular, fire from Shiv, air from Roman, and earth from Connor. T.S. Eliot’s The Four Quartets
confront these same themes and share some surprising similarities with show scene locations, dialogue, and plot points.
That’s because Succession
is an allegory for the micro and the macro: the rise and fall of families, civilizations, monarchies, dynasties, and empires. Ashes to ashes and dust to dust, the cycles rinse and repeat. Eliot modeled the four quartets on the 4 elements and the 4 seasons. And you can see even in Succession a similar manifestation of 4 elements. And, well, 4 seasons of the show. (And what occurs after 4 seasons? A full revolution around the sun, bringing you to where you began.)
Water seems to be at the root of it all. Even Ewan’s eulogy meditates on his and Logan’s journey on a boat. Even their abusive uncle is named Noah. In the show, we watch our nobody die by water, we watch our main character nearly die by water, and then we watch him revive in the ocean. As Kendall and his father wind their way through Adrien Brody’s circuitous Long Island home, Kendall remarks, “I think this leads to the ocean.” Because every path leads to the sea in some way or another.
The overarching narration from T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land
is the Arthurian Legend of The Fisher King. This story is told a million different ways with a million different outcomes, but always boils down to an injured or maimed monarch ruling over a dying land. Or as Ewan refers to his "empire of shit": “He’s built a wasteland and called it an empire.”
He’s looking for someone, anyone, to heal him, rescue the kingdom, and ensure the dynasty survives. This is the myth of the holy grail, which, in this show, can be seen as the throne: The original stories of the holy grail were not Christian/religious but they do employ a lot of the same mythmaking from earlier religions and mythologies to tell their stories and thus construct their new realties. As Eliot says in The Four Quartets
"The whole earth is our hospital Endowed by the ruined millionaire, Wherein, if we do well, we shall Die of the absolute paternal care That will not leave us, but prevents us everywhere."
I believe Kendall (and the other children) represent the grail knights who try to save the king. (On the same level they stand in for the gods, the elements, or anything at all). When Christianity became more popular, these myths adapted to Christian overtones, but they still had the Celtic and pagan myths at their core: the grail becomes the chalice from the last supper.
That’s why Kendall’s easy comparisons of himself to Jesus feel less blasphemous than revelatory. Jesus is another hero archetype in the show’s mythology. He is willing to sacrifice himself, which Kendall must do in order to become the successor his father wanted. As he says, "this is a culmination of my life's journey to be crucified for you morons."
(It’s worth noting: In some legends, the knight saves the king; in others, he inadvertently destroys him. We know Logan dies, but it does feel less likely that Waystar Royco survives.) Drowning is a constant feature of Eliot's poems, but so is baptism and renewed life. It is difficult to determine the meaning of water in either instance, except that it doesn't discriminate as a life or death bringer, which is both beautiful and terrifying. Parallels & Predictions: Piecing The Plot & Poetry Together
To repeat again, as this show is wont to do: “Crawl in a circle and close your eyes!” Logan Roy shouts during a game of Boar On A Floor. It’s an allegory, like many games on the series, and proudly says the quiet part out loud: Logan always wins. Here’s a little boar on the floor reference in The Four Quartets:
"We move above the moving tree In light upon the figured leaf And hear upon the sodden floor Below, the boarhound and the boar Pursue their pattern as before But reconciled among the stars."
We’ve seen the L.O.G.A.N. system at work many times and with many people. He dangles a carrot, a morsel of love, as each character attempts to play the game over and over while expecting different results. They are doomed to crawl in that circle, to play that blind game, as Logan angrily shouts, “It’s fun!” And this game doesn't end in death. The children still ask. "What would dad do?"
Games on Succession (which are a consistent refrain), it turns out, are rarely fun and are often designed to humiliate or inflict pain. The same goes when characters say “I’m just kidding” after an eviscerating remark. Logan thinks life is a game, and as he says, games should be taken seriously. And because Logan explicitly makes the rules, there is no winning, just trudging around the board, passing Go, and collecting $200. The games are essentially Sisyphean tasks that the kids wouldn’t be able to win even if they were actually competent enough to run the company. And yet they keep rolling the boulder. It’s endless. The repetition. It ends where it begins.
"Every phrase and every sentence is an end and a beginning, Every poem an epitaph. And any action Is a step to the block, to the fire, down the sea's throat Or to an illegible stone: and that is where we start. We die with the dying: See, they depart, and we go with them. We are born with the dead: See, they return, and bring us with them. The moment of the rose and the moment of the yew-tree Are of equal duration. A people without history Is not redeemed from time, for history is a pattern Of timeless moments."
Please also note the use of “the rose” and “the yew tree,” which are the names of Logan’s siblings Rose and Ewan, which derives from yew-tree. Other important name comparisons include Kendall’s association to spring/river valley; Siobhan’s nickname either a knife (Shiv) or Pinky (a variation of the name Rose); Roman’s connection to Romulus/Corialanus; Tom’s name meaning “twin” because there was already someone named Judas in the bible HELLO; Logan’s name meaning little hollow, which recalls another Eliot poem, The Hollow Men
We know this show is a game, one that isn't fun at all, and one whose rules Logan made up. Even when there's a winner, there's no winner. So it's almost futile to play at all. That said, it’s impossible to make sense of any of it all without the ending — to confirm this ball has been rolling toward an inevitable conclusion, but given the show’s ending has probably occurred already, here are my thoughts:
This may feel a bit on the nose given we’ve already seen this almost happen to “the Kurt Cobain of floaties,” but it would certainly be poetic. This could be sad (launched from a bridge); empowering (a la The Awakening
); or metaphorical (a drug overdose). At some point Kendall says, "If dad didn’t need me right now I wouldn’t know what I would be for." The kids exist with Logan as their sun; they are moons, satellites, in orbit. And when their sun dies out, they repeat the motions in the cold, slowly losing their patterns and motions. The term is science is a rogue planet and the following lines from the poem remind me of Kendall and his broken, hollow stare.
“It would be the same at the end of the journey, If you came at night like a broken king, If you came by day not knowing what you came for, It would be the same, when you leave the rough road And turn behind the pig-sty to the dull facade And the tombstone. And what you thought you came for Is only a shell, a husk of meaning From which the purpose breaks only when it is fulfilled If at all. Either you had no purpose Or the purpose is beyond the end you figured And is altered in fulfilment.”
- Kendall is king of the ashes
Any victory feels like it will be a Pyrrhic victory regardless when you've had to systematically take down everyone you love to achieve it. The same lines above can echo here "the purpose is beyond the end you figured/And is altered in fulfilment." A hollow victory. The Fisher King question Logan poses is, "Who can replace me?" Logan wanted each of his children to display the killer instinct. Kendall’s backwards journey through Dreamsong 29
may very well see him realize he is, in fact, the killer his dad always wanted — with open eyes. This will probably involve taking down his siblings. In this version, winning is a lot like losing, which feels very Succession
These Shakespearean histories and tragedies rarely end well for existing houses. With Richard III
(the-multiple-lineage-ending war of the roses) and Hamlet
(the-whole-house-dies-but-a-norwegian-king-swoops-in-to-take-it-all dynastic struggle) references abound. We may just see a new house rise up and rinse and repeat. This would probably also occur if the kids take each other down and leave it open for another party. We saw last season that Roman thought he had an in with Mattson until it didn’t serve Mattson anymore. I see the same thing happening between Roman and Mencken. This puts Mencken and Mattson in a position to take over, which may make Mattson win it or…
When Mattson is introduced, he is referenced as a trickster. Generally, in mythology, this character is quite intelligent or in possession of secret knowledge, and he uses it for trickery and commandeering situations. (Is that blood thing real???). Hamlet
concludes with every major character killing the other with their own tragic flaws until a third party Scandinavian comes in to take the crown with no necessary action or bloodshed at all. We already know he's unscrupulous; what is his end game? It reminds me of one of his early lines to Roman, which would be an eerie foreshadowing:
“Success doesn’t really interest me anymore, it’s too easy. Analysis + capital + execution. Fucking, anyone can do that. But failure, that’s a secret. Just as much failure as possible as fast as possible, burn that shit out, that’s interesting.”
We’ve seen it happen before (which is why it should happen again). We’ve also seen Tom remove the thin veneer of his ambitions to the point where he almost feels like Richard III. He has played the fool, which is Shakespearean estimation, is often equivalent to the trickster. This would be a fun and distorted parallel to Shiv offering this job to him for Logan to offer it to her. This would probably happen in conjunction with Mattson winning. As I mentioned earlier, the name Tom means “twin” and the apostle Tom was only called as such because there were already one too many “Judas” in the mix. He's also from Minnesota (the twin cities!), so this is becoming very real, you know???
While we know Tom has betrayed Shiv before, we also know Greg betrayed Shiv and Tom when he spoke to Geri in the first season about Tom having a press conference on cruises. He leads Tom to believe Shiv has betrayed him, getting one over on both of them. There may also be something with the Rule of 3 and being betrayed 3 times that feels biblical. The show also makes TONS of references to holding on to blackmail for opportune moments. Will we see something like this?
I’m not a big believer that Greg will fail so far upwards that he will win (this would feel like a betrayal in its own right), but do I believe there’s a world where Greg gets himself on a piece of paper with a question mark. Maybe???
This is my personal hope because I want the Tom and Jerry allusion to be real more than any other I put together (we love a good cat and mouse game). If Mattson wins, he needs a US CEO. Geri has collected a massive amount of dirt on everyone. And to call back to season 1’s interim CEO discussions, Shiv says, “I don’t like Geri. But I don’t hate Geri either.” It would feel particularly good given how much time and effort Logan spent clarifying Geri would be terrible at the position. Especially as Logan disparaging someone generally means he’s afraid of what they can do.
I’ll end at the ending. Or conclude where Eliot did on The Four Quartets:
"We shall not cease from exploration And the end of all our exploring Will be to arrive where we started And know the place for the first time. Through the unknown, unremembered gate When the last of earth left to discover Is that which was the beginning; At the source of the longest river The voice of the hidden waterfall And the children in the apple-tree Not known, because not looked for But heard, half-heard, in the stillness Between two waves of the sea. Quick now, here, now, always— A condition of complete simplicity (Costing not less than everything) And all shall be well and All manner of thing shall be well When the tongues of flames are in-folded Into the crowned knot of fire And the fire and the rose are one."
PS. Given ‘Pinky’ is another name for ‘Rose’ does this mean Shiv wins??? JK let’s just watch the show tonight and laugh at our predictions in the morning.
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2023.05.28 20:38 kaybyeee_1 My (28F) husband (30M) tried to pick a fight with me after my brother’s (35M) funeral
My brother died in a car accident a week ago and I went and stayed a week at my parents with our daughter (1) so i could help plan the funeral while my husband stayed home and worked. He came for the funeral and had to leave that afternoon. He’s been as supportive as he can before the funeral. Me, my daughter, and sister (21) came back home to my house the night after the funeral because my sister didn’t want to be alone. After I got in bed last night, I said goodnight to my husband and he mumbled something that I couldn’t understand and he snipped at me saying that he said goodnight. I was annoyed at that point and said nothing else. And he said “I love you” and I said it back and he just sighed and said “why do I always have to say it first?” I got so angry and just snapped. I asked him why did he have to pick a fight with me right now, and he just turned over and went to sleep. I have so much grief with losing my brother, and I had to pick up the pieces of my parents and do everything. I created the obituary, I had to take clothes for them to put my brother in for the funeral, I had to pick up his belongings form the funeral home they sent. I haven’t been able to have a single moment alone to process my own grief. For my husband to obviously think I’m going to snap back into our life of normalcy just makes me so angry. I have felt no compassion from him since I’ve come back home. I’m almost considering divorce. Advice?
The divorce comment seems extreme, I know. It’s just that this isn’t the first time he’s snapped or came at me while I’ve already been upset about something. It just feels like he’s lacking compassion. Do I truly want to divorce him? Of course not. I just want him to have some compassion. I have had to be strong for everyone this past week, and I just really needed his support and love. Not for him to already kick me while I’m down.
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2023.05.28 20:10 _Pliny_ STB-nex tried to feel me up as we are mourning his father.
Soon-to-be-ex due to emotional abuse (mostly me but kids too), forced/coerced sex, lying, infidelity. Didn’t share any house/yard work, mental load, but I’d given up on that and manage on my own.
So I was at his mom’s to comfort her, help with funeral planning. He sat beside me on the bench and started rubbing his hand on my inner, upper thigh. When I gently removed his hand and stood up he pretended to cry at the table in front his sister’s partner. No tears. Total manipulation attempt.
He’s been thinking about his own mortality and how he might not have a wife at the end. He told me. His folks had decades as partners and his dad loved his mom and treated her with respect.
It sounds terrible but I don’t see any evidence his emotional distress is actually about his dad or now-widowed mom. It’s all about himself, thinking about dying alone.
Even though I assured him I’d still take care of things at a hospital and manage things if he has another health crisis, care for him, and take care of end of life stuff when it comes. Regardless of him being with other women. The kind of women he has been with lately (the ones you pay) aren’t the ones you’d want making those kids of decisions.
My stbx is, I think, pretending to work on himself in therapy but his actions show me he doesn’t understand or agree that what he’s done is wrong, and wants to have his caretakesex workemaid/babysitter back and is losing patience. He thinks he just has to pretend to be remorseful (barely any effort) and then move back into “his house.”
He made several passive-aggressive comments about “coming home” to “his house.”
I’m afraid for how he is going to react when he hears from the lawyer, especially in this context.
More and more convinced with every interaction that he might have narcissistic personality disorder. This is what my therapist thinks. Other knowledgeable friend suggests npd or borderline.
It’s hard to know how to help his family in this terrible time, as well as being all together for our kids because of the disgusting and frankly, disturbing actions of my husband. Literally, what the fuck is wrong with him?
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2023.05.28 20:04 _Pliny_ STB-ex tried to feel me up as we’re mourning his dad.
Soon-to-be-ex due to emotional abuse (mostly me but kids too), forced/coerced sex, lying, infidelity. Didn’t share any house/yard work, mental load, but I’d given up on that and manage on my own.
So I was at his mom’s to comfort her, help with funeral planning. He sat beside me on the bench and started rubbing his hand on my inner, upper thigh. When I gently removed his hand and stood up he pretended to cry at the table in front his sister’s partner. No tears. Total manipulation attempt.
He’s been thinking about his own mortality and how he might not have a wife at the end. He told me. His folks had decades as partners and his dad loved his mom and treated her with respect.
It sounds terrible but I don’t see any evidence his emotional distress is actually about his dad or now-widowed mom. It’s all about himself, thinking about dying alone.
Even though I assured him I’d still take care of things at a hospital and manage things if he has another health crisis, care for him, and take care of end of life stuff when it comes. Regardless of him being with other women. The kind of women he has been with lately (the ones you pay) aren’t the ones you’d want making those kids of decisions.
My stbx is, I think, pretending to work on himself in therapy but his actions show me he doesn’t understand or agree that what he’s done is wrong, and wants to have his caretakesex workemaid/babysitter back and is losing patience. He thinks he just has to pretend to be remorseful (barely any effort) and then move back into “his house.”
He made several passive-aggressive comments about “coming home” to “his house.”
I’m afraid for how he is going to react when he hears from the lawyer, especially in this context.
More and more convinced with every interaction that he might have narcissistic personality disorder. This is what my therapist thinks. Other knowledgeable friend suggests npd or borderline.
It’s hard to know how to help his family in this terrible time, as well as being all together for our kids because of the disgusting and frankly, disturbing actions of my husband. So many women have told me they had almost the same experiences with their exes. Literally, what the fuck is wrong with some men?
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to TwoXChromosomes [link] [comments]
2023.05.28 19:59 JulianSkies Field Medic Technical Exchange - A one shot (part two due to size)
[Part 1] Date: December 31st, 2136 Standard Terran Time - Day Eighteen, Desperation
It seems I’ve underestimated those doctors’ resolve badly. And I’ve equally overestimated their sense of self-preservation.
We’re down to the last few possible rescues out there, anything we find alive is a miracle to be kept going at all costs and we’ve started actually worrying about the dead. Yeah, we’ve just been leaving the dead where they lie before, no use worrying about them when there’s lives to save. But now we’re gathering them.
Hey, do you know how aliens are generally very weird about, like, blood? And us eating meat? They’re real squeamish, right? Wanna know what I saw this morning?
We’d ran out of painkillers yesterday. This morning I’d been following my partner, same lass that I drunkenly asked to lick me what looks like years ago by this time. She looked like a fucking bloodhound, I don’t know what she was doing but she found the poor guy, gal’s been doing this job for long enough I guess. Guy was severely dehydrated, nearby storage tanks had ignited or something bringing the whole building down, he’d become seriously trapped by his left arm that had already necrosed. Absolutely certain of infection.
Now, I’m strong. But I was not going to lift nearly three hundred kilograms of whatever this building material is. And all of our hydraulic lifters are dust at this point, we had no means of moving the debris. After checking for that, and finding it to be an impossible task, I setup to call the recovery vehicle to bring a few more people to see if we could move it.
“No time” she said “And he’ll lose it anyway”. I didn’t grasp, exactly, what she was saying at the time, but she asked me to get something hot. The fires from the storages here were still burning, even after so long. I figured she’d attempt to amputate the necrosed arm here and now, we did have some sharp tools with us and she was probably packing painkillers, right? So I prepared a very medieval cauterization tool using a piece of shredded metal.
She wasn’t packing painkillers. My survival knife had been dangerously chipped and bent out of shape when I freed a kid stuck in a locked armoire. The only sharp implement she had was her claws.
If any human reads this I want you to imagine. You’ve seen this kind of scene in media a lot, haven’t you? Having to make a choice to sacrifice someone’s limb to save their life. Maybe on old media someone bringing down a bonesaw on a soldier’s arm as they bite tightly down on a piece of leather. We’re the hardiest motherfuckers in this galaxy, aren’t we?
Now I want you to picture this tiny little teddy bear of an alien, who you’ve probably seen passing out at the mere mention of flesh. Imagine this little thing bringing those tiny claws down on someone’s arm and tearing apart flesh until the bone is showing, dislodging it away and finishing the cut with her bare hand. With that soulless, blank stare in her eyes. And the one getting torn apart isn’t some badass human soldier, it’s a meek little venlil, who’d probably barely even heard about what is going on, who was just some factory worker going about his day before the apocalypse came knocking.
He’s not going to be having nightmares about the arxur I can promise you that. Fuck I can’t even say I won’t be having nightmares of this scene. But she’d cut above the line of the necrosis, and he was freed. Ugh, the smell
when I cauterized the wound… That wasn’t right… And he screamed for far too long, he should have passed out sooner, why was nature being so cruel this moment.
Back at the camp wasn’t any easier. It haven’t been easy for a while now… Suppose I better tell, I guess it’d be just plain disrespectful to those doctors pretending they’re saints. There were other things they brought in their personal belongings, things that weren’t, in the strictest sense, for healing people. A type of tool they’ve been using a lot, however.
Stimulants. And I don’t mean stuff like energy drinks, I mean “make the dead walk” kind of brain-busting stimulants. I’ve had to stop twenty eight cases of stimulant use. I’d asked myself earlier if perhaps zurulians didn’t have the same kind of stamina humans have, that isn’t true. Those people were taking their fucking bodies lightyears past their own limits, some haven’t slept in days. Everything to try to find one more
There was a rotation on the triage VR rig, people have to sleep, right? So, I learned about a new kind of problem you can suffer, Somatic Shock. Wanna know what Somatic Shock is? It’s not just the human brain that does this wonderful thing of extending your sensations to your tools, of treating your tools as an extension of your body, seems like a pretty common trick of sapience. And do you want to know what happens when you spend Fifty. Fucking. Hours. Strapped to a VR rig without sleep?
That thing the brain does gets pretty strongly ingrained. And dragging someone out of the system causes somatic shock. It’s kind of like a version of phantom limb syndrome, but what they feel is what you’re doing with the rig. Dragging someone out of a VR rig in that state feels like you’re ripping their limbs out, that’s why it’s called somatic shock. He fucking said “Not as bad as the last time” to me when he stopped shaking “I blacked out back then”.
What is wrong with those people, they have no sense of self-preservation! You can’t help anyone if you’re dead! This isn’t a goddamn fucking last stand. At this point i’ve mostly turned to babysitting them instead of doing anything else. Date: January 4th, 2137 Standard Terran Time - Day Twenty Two, Pyre
Today I caved in. Ever since I’ve realized they were using stimulants, they had offered them to me in case I wished. Not forced, just in case. Yeah I confiscated each and every one of those doses, before they killed themselves.
But today we were gathering the bodies, it was the very last stretch. We’re running low on literally everything, but at this point we’ve mostly accepted that whoever was left was dead, so we’ve gathered the bodies and identified them.
This… Is still a Federation world. Those poor people were killed by arxur, and also here I am. The help that was given was not requested, but I bet you all reading this know why we dealt with the bodies this way, yes? Doesn’t matter how much you think it’s right or wrong, when you’re here to help, the funeral rites are the ones of where you are. And, well… Here, it’s fire.
At least we tried making a pretty, respectable and honorable funeral pyre instead of anything else. Cremation is a thing, after all. But those ashes will scatter to the wind.
And so, as to not make this take multiple days, to make it end as soon as possible… I took a stimulant injection (yeah, straight into the blood flow, shows how potent the thing is). But i’m going to collapse to fucking hell afterwards, and i’m going to make each one of those damn doctors pass right the fuck out too. We’re done
. We’ve done everything we could, everything we couldn’t and then a little bit more.
But despite all that, one thing… Horrified me. You see, that lass… She was watching the pyre burn. All of the others had kept as far away from it as possible, the newest guy, that one that was right out of college, had even thrown up at the sight of it. But no, that lass was watching it, and it made me worried. I went to check on her.
“Does… It smell like food to you?” was what she asked me. And honestly, after sharing this gods-be-damned nightmare with her, she asks me that? I was all ready to get extremely pissed off at her until I noticed what she was doing.
She was scraping her tongue with her claw almost maniacally. And she had even started to bleed. This… This was the lass that told me about how powerful their sense of taste is, how some things overlapped both their sense of smell and taste. The lass I had drunkenly asked to see how I tasted and identified my bad eating habits from that alone.
And that realization made me remember Placido. It was a huge fire, they even brought the armed forces to help the rescue operation, that’s why I was there. What stuck to me the most was the smell, that nauseating smell, the realization that the smell of burning human flesh was so indescribably close to the smell of pork…
And I realized the intent of her question was one word short of what her mouth said. “Does it smell like food to you too
?”. Why is nature so completely fucking cruel like this? They’re herbivores and somehow, for whatever twist of fucking fate, because evolution is the worst engineer in the entire universe, whatever little chemical present in burning flesh didn’t just trigger their olfaction, but also their sense of taste.
It made me sick to my stomach to even consider it… And all I could say was “Yes”. I knew now why everyone else didn’t get close, just didn’t know why she did otherwise. But I did what I thought best, straight up grabbed her and pulled her away. Brought her back to the camp (of course we built the pyre far away, I wasn’t sure why at the moment but this must be why) and with an epiphany I… Jury-rigged something. My soap was almost gone, two thirds of it had been used to help sanitize tools at that point, but with my bent and broken knife I shaved little pieces of it into a water canteen, and managed to cobble together something with the vague smell of mint.
Wasn’t none of that buzz-giving smoke, but it was enough to help keep them sane. These people have such a terrifying drive to help people, but no discipline on how to help themselves
. How’d they get like this? Date: January 7th, 2137 Standard Terran Time - Day Twenty Five, Aftermath
Kiki, that’s what I’m calling her here, gotta call her something. Not putting anyone’s real names here, any good historian could match my diary here with the crew roster of the Beacon of Hope and figure out who she is but anyone else seeing this doesn’t get an identifier. Never asked those doctors if they’d let me talk about them, hence why no names.
Kiki reminds me of some people I’ve seen. Whole day she’d sometimes just seem to not be there, and then go back to her normal self afterwards. Right, we’ve finally come back up to the flagship. Dinnertime and she was eating a lot more, always pretty strong stuff. I went up to the most veteran guy I knew, the guy that had taken charge on the ground. Asked him if that was normal behavior and wanna know what he said? “There’s always a mission you don’t come back from, seems like this was hers” What even is going on here?
I tried to get more information, and he told me that it happens to everyone and it’s just a matter of time. One day your body comes back, but your mind stays on that mission, and can never leave. That every day you are both here and there, that every day you’re always at that mission, your mind never leaves it forever. This was very familiar, so I asked him what they do to those people and… “Nothing, they’re still part of the FRF” just a simple nothing. It said a lot, though.
I’m going to consider I’m talking to the future here, and these guys figured out what mental health is. At this time? What this guy said means a lot more than it looks. Nothing means not sending them to a place they wouldn’t come back from, he said they’re still part of the fleet too. You’ve probably read all the things I said earlier, these guys are pretty fraternal here. They help each other because they understand what they all go through
These guys know what post-traumatic stress disorder looks like, and now that I stop to think about his words… “it’s just a matter of time”... How many more of those guys have something like it? How many times were those distant stares during study time this
happening instead of just thinking hard? They might not have a single study about this kind of stuff, but at least they try to be here for each other.
I thought there would be something for me to teach here but… There wasn’t. Not a thing. Can’t even talk about their self-preservation problems, I’ve seen plenty of humans do the same in disaster situations, even trained responders. Especially trained responders.
I’ve been spending the day around Kiki, trying to make sure she’s alright. Seems like she is, mostly, at least I can’t detect her getting worse aside from a few times spacing out. Gave her a stupid gift, one of my spare bars of mint-scented soap, smell seemed to help her get her mind out of things. That’s when she dropped a piece of information on me, she’d volunteered on a terran vessel. In fact, the entire unit had volunteered as crew on a terran vessel. Having been on the ground for what, twenty five days I’ve been out of the loop, but something’s going on.
Seems like we’ve got a but mission in Milieau, very big. I haven’t even contacted HQ back to report the end of our mission, didn’t have the strength of spirit to go wade back into the trenches so soon. And here they are, the first thing they do when they get home is ask “Where are we going next”. Been writing this to procrastinate calling, I guess I should follow their example.
Well, big mission indeed. Feds gone full mask-off, unreliable allies, time to rambo shit up. Turns out my unit back home is going to be part of ground operations, and my counterpart had been training with them. Those doctors are adding C-SAR (right, that’s Combat Search and Rescue to y’all reading this) to their repertoire and boy did the guy take to it like fish to water, it seems, guys back home really like the guy. Apparently he’s shocked some of them with his sense of humor, yeah, those guys will do that.
Meanwhile the whole unit I was with here had volunteered to join the hospital ships in that operation, we’re liberating a captured planet after all so we’re going to have a bunch of those in the wings. Actually the entire Beacon of Hope is going to field there, we’re on the way to the rally point right now. They’re going to distribute the excess crew (did I mention the Beacon of Hope generally has triple the crew it’s been built to operate with?) to our ships to alleviate the specialist crewing problems and then remain further back. There’s a wild difference between the facilities of a mobile field hospital like what the UN navy uses and what the Beacon of Hope has. Hell, their fuel barges even split off from the fleet to try and jury-rig their storages as material transport to get us a lot more supplies. This time they’re expecting things to go much, much worse.
Me… I’m going to see if I can try to convince HQ to let me field where this unit is going to, it’s probably going to be one of our hospital ships. Genuinely think I’d be more useful there, making sure those docs don’t burn themselves to death in their passion, than I’d be on a landing party. I know my guys got a good replacement for now.
Anyway, this was my piece. Dunno if i’ll want to write about the next op. You know, thinking on it… I bet this ship was running right in the rearguard of the fleet that showed up on Earth, no surprise they were the first to break with the feds to help us. We all know the feds messed up everyone with their shit, and who the hell knew that the ones they didn’t manage to break, were their doctors.
Yep, long enough I had to split in two despite planned as a one shot. Inspiration does that to ya.
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2023.05.28 19:23 Then_Seaworthiness40 [For Sale] Some hiphop gems, alternative, soul & funk and great UK titles on exclusive vinyl pressing. Many of listed are below retail. Also have rare tapes for those who need - navy blue boxset, alchemist, boldy and other underground hiphop.
Spent too much on vacation and need to find new home for these records. all from my personal collection, most of the items are still in shrink wrap & stored in premium inne outer sleeves. Some items listed below retail (with shipping)
Prices including shipping within US
Ships from Los Angeles
Sale is on for one day and shipments will be out by Tuesday night
bundle items together to save
•Denzel Curry - Imperial (UO gold metal) m/nm $27
•Akai Solo - Spirit Roaming nm/nm $35
•Smoke DZA - The Hustler's Catalog 2 (ghost kelly TK) nm/nm $40
•Pink Siifu & Real Bad Man - Real Bad Flights (Clouds w 7" single TK) nm/nm $65
•The Professionals (Madlib & Oh No) (neon green, sealed) nm/nm $30
•Madlib & Kazi - Blackmarket Seminar (clear TK, sealed) m/nm $55
•Madlib - High Jazz (sea glass) nm/nm $26
•Common - A Beautiful Revolution Pt.2 (SIGNED insert, first pressing) nm/nm $40
•Ganster Music Vol.2 (blueberry, sealed) m/nm $24
•Wilma Archer - A Western Circular (clear) nm/nm $30
•Wilma Vritra - Grotto (red blue marble VMP) nm/nm $32
•Obongjayar - Some Nights I Dream Of Doors (SIGNED red w exclusive slipmat) nm/nm $55
•slowthai - UGLY (OBI Signed red) nm/nm $60
•Mount Kimbie - City Planning/ Die Cuts nm/nm $28
•Blarf - Cease & Desist nm/nm $32
•Erykah Badu - New Maerykah Part Two (purple shade) nm/nm $22
•Jill Scott - By Popular Demand vg+/vg $24
•Gal Costa - Gal (2014 brazil reissue) (2" inner split) vg+/g $55
•Sampa The Great - As Above So Below (seaglass blue) nm/nm $24
•Tokimonsta & Anderson .Paak, KRNE - Put it Down 7" (white label) vg+ $25
•Squid - Bright Green Field (alt cover glo in dark w slipmat, sealed) m/nm $45
•King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard - Demos Vol.1 (Music To Kill Bad People To) (140g pic disc) nm/nm $24
•Mayer Hawthorne - Impressions vg+/nm $15
•Tkay Maidza - LYWW Vol.2 (purple) nm/vg+ $30
•Tkay Maidza - LYWW Vol.3 (blue white cornetto) nm/vg+ $25
•N.E.R.D. - Seeing Sounds (Interscope reimagined pic disc by burnt toast, sealed) m/m $105
•Apollo Brown - Clouds (yellow fade TTL, sealed) m/m $24
•Moor Mother - Jazz Codes (clear, 1" seam split on inner) nm/nm $30
•Ginger Root - Mahjong Room m/m $30
•Park Hye Jin - Before I Die (pink deluxe w 7" single) m/nm $22
•BBNG - Talk Memory (white, w catalogue zines issue 1-3 (double sided posters) sent out to first /500) $35
•Blu - Her Favorite Colour (blue splatter) vg+/nm (small air pocket on label, otherwise near mint. ask for photos) $30
•Blu - The Color Blue (blue w 7" flexi) nm/nm $24
•Nas & Nasir Jones - Made You Look 7" (clear, sealed) m/m $22
•Knx/ Monopoly - Hit+Run 7" vg/vg $22
•Liv.e - Stay Inside 12" nm/nm $15
•Navy Blue - Saga of Sage Tape Boxset nm $500
•ANKHLEJOHN & Navy Blue - As Above So Below (Signed by navy on j card) nm $65
•Maxo - Smile & Little Big Man vg+ $35
•Pink Siifu - Gumbo! Deluxe!! vg+ $40
•Alchemist - Sandwich nm $50
•Boldy James & Futurewave - Mr. Ten08 nm $60
•Jpegmafia - LP! (green) nm $20
•Small Bills - Don't Play It Straight nm $25
•Yaya Bey - Remember Your North Star nm $15
•Meechy Darko - Gothic Luxury (clear) m $15
•Elucid - I Told Bessie nm $20
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2023.05.28 17:34 Gargus-SCP Related Works - Wesley Dodds as The Sandman (Jan-Jul 1941): Troubled Sleep
After a 1940 defined by gathering strengths and refinement across the feature, the early months of 1941 bring a few troubling portents behind-the-scenes for Fox's affectionately termed Grainy Gladiator. Nothing ruinous in itself, but signs of an upcoming radical shift away from what the character represented to start.
For one, the April issue of Adventure Comics (#61) brings with it a new cover feature, Ted Knight AKA Starman, courtesy writer-artist Jack Burnley. Already the second lengthiest entry in the book at nine pages, Starman quickly managed what neither Sandman nor Hourman could during their respective years as star attractions and upgraded to a full thirteen pages by his third appearance in #63. For context, Sandman only went from six pages to ten with its upgrade, while Hourman has remained rockstaedy at eight pages, and neither took down another non-superhero supporting feature to justify the page increase like Starman did Barry O'Neil and Mark Lansing. Moreover, from Starman's second appearance on, he is only drawn by Burnley; writing duties now belong to the Sandman's own Gardner Fox.
Which loops in with two other issues at play over Wesley's tossing, turning figure. Starting with issue #61, available online sources no longer fully agree who wrote what for the Sandman feature. You must understand, outside superstar figures with major pull like the creators of Superman or Batman, very few creative teams are properly credited in these Golden Age comics - my credits the last few posts have all been crossreferenced across numerous wikis and databases who owe their credits to investigative work by fans like Jerry Bails back in the 1960s. Such work was sadly not exhaustive, and while a few places (like DC Continuity Project and Wikipedia) state or else imply Fox stayed on as writer for the next few issues, from June to November there is no consensus as to who penned the stories.
I shouldn't be surprised if Fox's involvement terminated with the March issue, for April also saw All-Star Comics shift its format slightly, with Fox writing all nine interior stories for the 64 page mag in addition to his duties on the longer Starman feature. Man would have to work double time to keep pace, even if Sandman didn't drop to eight pages with #62 in May. Either way, Fox is certainly gone following #64 in July, as that issue features the final story drawn by regular artist and co-creator Creig Flessel, who departs to work on Shining Knight later in the year. As I say, things are changing fast for Sandman, and not all changes seem necessarily for the better. Best, however, to take the stories on their own level before drawing any final conclusions! Coverage note: This entry goes to July rather than June for the sake of my sanity. If I stopped midway through the year, I'd only need cover seven features here, but the back half of '41 would require coverage of eleven. A nine-nine split feels much more feasible.
Orchids of Doom - Gardner Fox, Creig Flessel, Chad Grothkopf Once again, a socialite friend to Wes and Dian is at the center of a minor mystery with big implications - namely, how can Pedro Nogades, father to Carla, rightly claim he breeds otherwise purely wild orchids in captivity? Investigating as the Sandman, Wes and Dian find a dead man in the Nogades greenhouse with his head stripped to the bone, and in following another fellow who sniffed an orchid before promising a shipment of such to some ruffians on the bad side of town, see his own face dissolve to bare skull. A visit to the police chemist reveals the orchids on the dead men's persons were laced to release a deadly flesh-eating gas on exposure to natural air, which is enough probably cause for Wesley to enlist Carla's boyfriend Bill in staging a raid on the Nogades manor. Some close shaves and fisticuffs end with the group discovering a diorama of the local coast, laid out to assist enemy agents in an invasion. Pedro is put away and the orchids revealed as concealing microfilm copies of the coastal plans, but how do we square the mystery that started it all? Simple: Nogades was no botanist, and called the flower by the wrong name when concocting his cover story!
An alright yarn to kick of the calendar year. As per usual when Fox tries for a somewhat complicated mystery, he's no adequate means of tying off loose ends other than large blocks of text, but it's lively and keeps the situation evolving with decent justifications for mid-story action and dragging Bill along for further fisticuffs. Hooking the entire mystery on, "Oh, the bad guy misspoke," is a tad lame, if understandable in the context of Fox's passion for slipping general knowledge flexes into his stories. Flessel and Grothkopf get some good mileage out've the skull imagery that crops up whenever the flower kills, and I rather like the brief bout of fisticuffs towards the end. The minor social awkwardness when Bill gets in the car with Wes and Dian is pretty good too, and I'm sorry to report I can't add this story to the "Wesley getting shot" count, as the bad guy only plugs his hat. Kinda funny having a Golden Age Sandman story involving orchids given Neil's own pre-Sandman work with Black Orchid, innit?
The Story of the Flaming Ruby - Fox, Flessel, Grothkopf There exists a ruby of blazing red, which has driven men to rage and madness wherever it appears, and today it sits in the hand of a young man in the local jeweler's shop, who flashes it cross Dian's vision. Later in the evening, she wakes in a trance consumed with the urge to kill her father, stopped only by Sandman as he rushes in from investigating a similarly queer case. A bank teller friend from his private life has found himself driven to steal from the vault and deliver it to some crooks on a lonely road every night, all after one of those men flashed him the ruby. Wes and Dian are unable to stop this night's transaction (on account of the ruby briefly turning Dian against Sandman), but seeing the gem in action gives Wes an idea on how to counteract its effects, and go into battle during the next drop armed with blue cobalt glasses. A brawl puts down all the blackmailers except one, but Wes opts instead to go after the head of the operation, knocking him out and lurking in the dark to catch the last as he reports in, revealing the bank teller! Turns out the ruby DOES have hypnotic properties and was used to assist their robberies, but the teller - hoping by playing at the victim to lure Sandman into his cohorts' midst and rub him out - spoke as if he remembered the whole experience, where Dian forgot herself on every exposure. Oops!
Same basic mystery structure and resolution type here as last month, complete with overly-wordy explanation, although I find the hook of pitting Dian and Wesley against one another gives it a minor leg up, as does the relatively straightforward nature of the criminal operation compared to planting microfilm in deadly flowers. There's a more even balance between the rush in bust 'em up style of crime-fighting the feature has developed and the stealthy skullduggery I think suits the character best, with nice action art to match each. Dian has some silly faces whenever she wakes from her hypnosis, and the four panel sequence of Wes halting her murder attempt works pretty well. This is, unfortunately, the final pencil-inking collaboration between Flessel and Grothkopf, and much as I've kvetched over the second man's solo work, I'm sorry to see the back of him in this capacity. When the two were in proper tune, they were the best artistic team Sandman enjoyed yet.
(Stop dodging bullets, I want to see you gunshot.)
Mystery at Malay Mac's - Fox, Grothkopf Hey, a rare post-Hourman, pre-redesign cover appearance! That's always nice. "Hello, officer? Yeah, coupla chucklefucks right here, the alley off Fourth, can't miss 'em."
What's this? Dian breaking into a notorious criminal slumlord's safe in the bad part of town? A safe, as Wes discovers after he scares the lady off, filled to the brim with poison gas! Evidently not, as Dian is sound asleep when Wes arrives at Belmont manor to investigate, and a subsequent visit to Mister Mac reveals the only person who'd know the safe was booby-trapped is a local kidnapping organizer. Some blind, flailing fists turns up the girl, Dian's perfect duplicate, snatched from out of state to replace Dian and gain leverage over the cops. Too bad the kidnapper's made of strong stuff, knocking out Sandman and taking both woman for a ride to get back at Mac. Fortunately, Dian leaves Wes a trail of jewelry out the window, enabling him to follow and take down all the crooks with one throw of his gas pistol, revealing in the process 'twas Mac himself who tipped Dian's duplicate to his safe, in hopes of spoiling his rival's big plot.
Art-wise, this is probably Grothkopf's best work for Sandman to date. His tendency to exaggerate is translated into some properly goonish faces for the villains and really, really strong action poses, with some properly atmospheric shots sprinkled in for good measure. He cannot draw the gasmask for piss, but there's such an improvement I almost thought this was a Flessel joint before checking the wiki credits. Makes me wish we could see what he'd do if he kept on as a solo artist - free from the impulse to treat the feature as a cartoon, he produces damn fine work. As a story, this makes good time to mention my misgivings with Wesley's tendency to burst through windows and start swinging long before he thinks to use his sleeping gas. While it's great fun to describe and hype up as the mark of a madman who's even cooler as the badass normal than Batman, it also encourages a faster degradation in the character's identity. I'm sure you'll notice it's been yonks since lurking in the shadows and thinning the ranks by knocking them out in advance has factored into the stories. That Wes handles the bad guy by literally clonking him over the head with the gas gun rather than pulling the trigger speaks to the influence other, punchier superhero features have exerted over the strip.
The Menace of the Metal Gun - Fox?, Flessel From aboard a mysterious aircraft, a madman fires upon the city with a metal-melting ray that dissolves the skyscrapers into slag! Alerted to Doctor Borloff's activities, Wesley meets with swift defeat when the rogue scientist melts his gas gun and escapes in his cylindercraft to terrorize afresh. There IS a bright side, as seeing the ray firsthand gives Wesley some idea how to counteract its effects, and he sends Dian and her father warning for the local airforce to coat their planes in sand as a silicate buffer against the ray. Alas, only one officer heeds his message, leaving Sandman alone to get aboard the machine via his new wirepoon gun and defeat Borloff from within. For his brawling process, a good midflight fight is nothing if the hero gets tossed out an open door, but fortunately he can grapple onto the lone surviving plane, recover his bearings, zip back up, and put a stop to Borloff's dreams of world conquest once and for all!
Action is the name of the game here, and even without Grothkopf's inking enhancements, I think Flessel does a fine job on his own. I'm wary of the wirepoon in the future, as by year's end it will completely replace the gas gun as Sandman's sidearm of choice in further drift from the original Christman concept, but taken as a neutral in its debut, giving Sandman greater aerial mobility does lead to some cool shots and enhance the sense Wes goes stark bananas in the mask by pulling some stunts that would almost certainly pull his arms from their sockets in real life. There are, however, some particularly stiff action shots, and in one panel Flessel cocks up the design on the mask worse than Grothkopf last ish. Based on the opening vignette, Borloff decimated millions of innocent lives in addition to all the planes he melted out of the sky, making him easily the deadliest foe Wes has faced to date, and in turn making the "We did it, gang, everything is bright and peachy again!" ending sorta offputting. They'll have to organize mass funerals tomorrow, Wes. Show a little respect.
For America and Democracy: The Grey Shirts - Fox, Grothkopf In the top-level story, the JSA learn of their mission for the FBI: a group of Nazi insurgents known as the Grey Shirts are plotting subversive and destructive activities all across America, and are now posed to badly destabilize the nation in a series of disruptive attacks. Each is assigned a mission at critical points cross the nation, though given the widely-ranging disparity in their powers, their usefulness to the cause varies equally wildly. The Atom humiliates some goons spreading Nazi ideology at a single college, Hawkman barely prevents the destruction of an aviation plant in California, and Hourman's defense of an Oklahoma oil field ends with him toppling one of the oil towers to stop his quarry. Meanwhile, Green Lantern detonates a zeppelin secretly jamming radio transmissions nationwide, the Spectre casually annihilates some otherworldly vampiric globes sympathetic to Hitler's cause, and Doctor Fate uses his magic to out every single spy on the eastern seaboard. Uneven efforts or not, the group converge on the Grey Shirts' ringleader, and with a little help from Johnny Thunder, turn him over to good ol' J. Edgar Hoover's custody. Alas, Wesley does not get the blood he's thirsting after.
(Also Doctor Fate alerts Wesley to the identity and location of the ringleader before his mission starts rather than letting him figure it out on his own like everyone else. Prick.)
For his six-page leg of the assignment, the Sandman is off to El Paso, Texas to assist a local newspaper under threat from the Grey Shirts for printing pro-democracy and anti-Hitler editorials. Of course, this being Wesley Dodds on the job, he gets this information by roughing his way into the newspaper offices, then acts on it by beating on the guard at the Grey Shirts' camp and pounding down a band of brainwashed young men to prove he's a better American than them. After sending the wannabe Nazis for a whirl by running their bomb shipment off the road, Wesley doubles back to completely break the recruits' spirits, daring them to prove their hard enough by shooting an unarmed man in Hitler's name, chiefly himself. When none can cut the mustard, he marches them back into town with collars strapped to his car, and inspires the lot to join the Army to a few shirtless bars of "God Bless America."
Cripes but jingoism produces some heady results, doesn't it? I'm not sure I can rightly condone the ridiculous levels of patriotism on display here, even against such classically anti-American enemies as Nazis, yet at the same time, look at this and tell me it isn't the hardest shit you'll see all week. Again, though I've my misgivings about Wes as a brawler no matter how entertaining the results prove, there's something endearing about him being so raring for a fight his first move is to altercate the receptionist at the place he's assigned to defend. On the whole, Grothkopf's final Sandman contribution also shows refinement from his earlier works, the broader, thicker elements of his linework now tempers on a somewhat more grounded approach. Certainly the Sandman himself keeps a consistent look better than he does in any other issue published thus far this year. I DO notice he reused Flessel's design for the District Attorney wholesale on the newspaper publisher. Since he's going and heading out on a job well done, let's not hold it against him, eh?
The Purple Death Ray - Fox?, Flessel At the nightly planetarium show, a member of the audience screams and falls down dead, stricken by a litany of strange symptoms with no obvious cause. Wesley, believing the man was killed by a death ray, examines the auditorium's projector, only to find no obvious alterations or fault. Undeterred, he purchases himself a seat next to the murdered man's for the next show, which is now occupied by another fellow who received a last-second courtesy invitation. Acting quickly, the Sandman reexamines the projector from the shadows and finds a replacement bulb screwed into the socket pointed directly at the man's chair. With assistance from his wirepoon, Sandman swings down and wrenches the man from his seat just as the show starts, the bulb bathing his seat in deadly radiation. On learning the man is a former judge and the deceased a former DA, it's not long before Wes ferrets out the killer; it's the cashier, a former scientist sent to jail for misappropriating university funds years ago, out for revenge and now stopped cold.
See, while I'm skeptical about the growing presence of science-fiction elements in the series, they make fine fodder when they play to Sandman's strengths. Lurking high above a crowd of people seeking the answer to some deadly mystery is exactly Wes' bag, and plus or minus some strange mask drawings, Flessel captures that thrill of closely examining a big deadly machine in secret before it fires. I'd submit the page where Sandman saves the judge from the beam as an easy contender for best of the year thus far, and the shot where Wes pushes Dian away from the killer's bullet is another fine piece of work. My memories of this one before sitting down to reread and write were a lot chillier, probably because I wish the series remained in crime pulp rather than raygun pulp, but a good outcome is a good outcome. Seriously, though, why is the mask going so bobble-eyed of late?
The Voodoo Sorcerer - ???, Flessel As Dian and Wesley tiff over his interest in an exotic dancer they know through a mutual friend, the woman's tail-lashing dance is interrupted when she sees a great glowing triangle materialize before her eyes. With the shock straining her bad heart, the Sandman brings her to boyfriend's house, where he reveals the triangle is a voodoo witch doctor's means of accusing someone of murder - just as news comes over the wire that the man the woman lashed with her costume tail has died! Smelling a rat, Wes rushes to the scene of the crime to find the taile barbed with poison quills, only for the titular sorcerer to bumrush him out the window. It's a big misunderstanding, thankfully: he's as shocked by the murder as Sandman, and only summoned the triangle on suggestion from an acquaintance, forgetting the dancer would know its significance through her partner. By happiest coincidence, this provides Wesley the solution to the mystery right quick, for only his friend's chauffeur would have motive, opportunity, and knowledge to frame his employers and their associates for the murder of a stock broker who owed them money.
Hmm, ah, see, on the one hand, it IS nice that the voodoo guy is innocent of everything except a lapse in judgement and the real twist is an unassuming little man exploiting the mystery and fears around the craft to cast suspicion off his person. On the other hand, eek, yike, zoinks! None good. Bad, even. Outside unfortunate depictions of non-white persons from the 1940s, the story's pretty weak for a murder mystery, as numerous elements are evidently known to the characters well in advance, yet only made clear to the reader right before they become relevant, like the exact identity of the murdered man. It's only eight pages, so there's little opportunity to piece information together on your own time, and as such it is heavily reliant on narrative cheats to generate cheap surprise. About the best thing here is the big page-dominating panel of Wesley swinging through the city on his wirepoon, unconscious woman tucked under arm. Kinda hard to convincingly raise my dander about what it means for the character and his feature when it's successfully operating on the long-standing principle of "masked mystery men swinging on a wire through skyscrapers looks really cool." S'like a solid fifth of the formula behind why Spider-Man is so enduringly popular.
(Also not a big fan of how Wes dismisses Dian from participating in the case without any adequate reason why. She calls him out over it, even, and nothing in the story justifies his decision to fly solo on this one.)
The Unseen Man - ???, Flessel Dian's purchase of paints from a local hobby shop includes quite the unusual accidental item: a paint that turns anything and everything invisible on contact. Determined to solve this mystery on her own, Dian investigates the shop with the dealer's cooperation, only for the dread Unseen Man to get the drop on her. Fortunately, Sandman is there to save her because he won't let Dian do anything on her own; unfortunately, Dian doesn't know Wes can see her attacker through his blue cobalt lenses and pulls him away, thinking him mad and letting the Unseen Man go free. As reward for her screw up, she's targeted in her home the next night, only for Wes to barge in again, having anticipated the only possible secret identity for the crook would make him likely to strike back at Dian. It is, unsurprisingly, the hobby shop owner, who Wes turns over to the police before heading out to patent his invisibility paint with the United States Army.
Alright, it's definitely not Gardner Fox writing anymore, because I cannot imagine Fox treating Dian so poorly. I gave her some dignity in summary, but this story is plain dumping all over her as a fussy, incompetent tryhard who fails at investigating on her own on account her womanly ways. Just look at the sheer antagonism between her and Wes; you two are partners, she's saved Sandman's skin like a dozen times, worn his costume and wielded his gas gun to do it once, even! Don't try to BS me into thinking Wes would run this paternalist "let me handle it, Dian, I wear the pants in this relationship" crap on her. You're only alive because she's worn your fucking pants. Otherwise, 'nother instance where the story and art alike don't give me much of note. I reckon Flessel was about done with the series with Fox gone and sorta phoned in his last few assignments. They're nowhere near the standard of his early solo artistic duties on the title. There IS another good wirepoon swinging shot, if one counterbalanced by a crummier instance with yet another weirdly-proportioned mask.
The Mysterious Mr. X: The Kidnapper's Union - Fox, Cliff Young The Justice Society are bored. Bored, bored, bored. Why are they bored? There is no crime. Not a single ruffian or scoundrel or roughneck lawbreaker anywhere in the city! Where did crime go? Crime has taken an enforced vacation, courtesy the plans of big crime boss Mister X (hats off), as prelude to his scheme for taking out the JSA and putting all his criminal enterprises back on easy street. It's quite the collection of rackets out against the superheroes - an arsonist ring for Flash, a jewel snatching gang for Hawkman, leader of the phony fortune teller underworld against Doctor Fate, even hard-pressing gym membership shakedowns for the Atom! Naturally our heroes triumph, though every one also encounters a strange little man idly strolling through their battlegrounds. He's so omnipresent despite his mousiness, he's even there when they convene at the police station to organize Mister X's (hats off) arrest. Except this unassuming slip of a man? He IS Mister X (hats off), and with the Justice Society having taken all the fun out've crime, he's turning himself in to live comfortably on the state's dollar in jail. WHOOPSY-DOODLE!
For his six-page part in the game, Sandman must contend against the kidnapper's union, who naturally enough have abducted Dian to get his attention. Not only have these lowlives taken Dian hostage (though she doesn't particularly mind), they've taken out phony accident insurance claims against themselves should the hero injure any of them en route to his untimely death! Nobody quite expects Wes to avoid the sniper-guarded roads to their remote hilltop hideout, though, and a quick wirepoon swing over the canyon (complete with Mister X - hats off - sighting) puts him right in the criminal den. From there, it's a simple biff wham boom to take down the punks and disarm their supporting fire. Alas, Sandman is once again only in the loop on the true nature of the threat against the JSA because someone notifies him from their own investigation, this time Flash via telegram. Let him do his own detective work, you pricks!
Right. You see these panels? You see Dian being calm and collected in the midst of a kidnapping operation? You see Wes trusting her with a submachine gun to keep watch on the fools who mean them harm? Yeah, THAT'S Fox writing Dian. Whoever's writing the Adventure feature at this time ought've taken notes. Artistically, Young makes a fine replacement for Grothkopf and Flessel in Adventure - he can match the first for goons, the second for action, manages a nice turnaround effect before Wes swings on his wirepoon, and even gives us a by-now all-too-rare heavy shadow shot on Wes and Dian. I'm a big fan of the lead kidnapper who calls the JSA the "Justiss Sassiety," and find this instance of Mister X (hats off) the second best in the book, behind only his appearance in the Hourman story, which I think speaks for itself. Probably the only time I'll express preference for something Hourman related over Sandman.
The loss of all three major contributors to the Sandman feature across early 1941 and the crunch down to eight pages has certainly made the Adventure Comics side of the Sandman line a rockier experience. It's still possible to derive enjoyment from the wonky mysteries and higher-concept criminals, but one must accept atmosphere and and particularity have been near-entirely sacrificed for generalized bombast and louder appeal. Don't misunderstand, I've become a fan of Wesley Dodds, Fist-Swinging Bullet Sponge, and my past praises for him aren't diminished by the realization of what this has done to his integrity as a character circa today's stopping point. The trouble is, while I enjoy this half-mad, impossibly reckless read on the character, it simply no longer bears any resemblance to the early days' lurking and creeping through the seedier parts of town. There's a great series of justifications running through the Sandman concept - he's no powers, so he uses the gas gun, so he needs the gas mask, which hides his identity so perfectly it frees him to wear the ordinary business suit, which highlights his vulnerability. Fling him around like a ragdoll who knows no fear of injury or death, although I'll clap for the bravado of it all, I must object if it means any notion he should be sneaky or cautious degrades.
Especially if it means the gas gun vanishes from the character. It hasn't met its final end just yet, but for this seven month block it's proven a very perfunctory aspect of the strip, hung by his side and occasionally brandished without acting as an integral part of the action or storytelling. The wirepoon has subsumed its function as the sidearm, and while I must stress there are plenty aces shots of Wes swinging that fully justify its prominence, taking precedence over the thing that makes him the Sandman, Crimefighter What Fights Crime By Putting The Criminals To Sleep plain rubs me the wrong way. Be awful nice i we could have both without the new toy putting the old out to pasture, y'know? It's not led to anything I'd full-throatedly object over just yet, but... ach, you'll see next time. Speaking of...
Next time! 1941 comes to a close as Wesley picks up another feature to his name, and also a stupid, ugly new costume!
(Previous write-ups: 1939, 1940 pt 1, 1940 pt 2)
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2023.05.28 15:21 bobcrossed believe in the afterlife? anecdotes on interacting with spirits?
my aunt recently died from cancer. it was all so quick, diagnosis to death was about three weeks. she’d been having pain for years from a car accident and her dr just loaded her up on opioids so it probably masked the cancer for awhile. the day she goes into the hospital, she’s lost her vision from brain lesions and she calls my mom saying their mother is in the room, telling her she has brain cancer and that she’s going to go with her parents. my aunt’s phone calls with my mom featured stories my mom believes my aunt was too young to remember or know. she gets the cancer diagnosis about a week later (in lungs, spread to brain).
the night she died we were sitting around her corpse in her living room before the coroner came to take her. it was cold because they had a fan put in the room for her but for about 20 seconds one of my thighs felt really warm, like someone had been sitting on it like when you come into a classroom to a warm chair (lol). the next day we’re in her house, her corpse is at the funeral home, we’re about to bye to my uncle and cousins before our flight and it feels like someone shoved my purse. no one was around.
i tell my mom and sister about these but they didn’t feel anything odd while at my aunt’s house. it’s weird because they were a lot closer to my aunt than i ever was but i can’t help thinking it was her that i felt. when my grandma died, another aunt claimed the towel in my grandma’s bathroom (the room she died in) kept falling off the hook by itself, and when my dad was in the CCU a few years ago he’d been saying that all his friends were dying but he had a choice (drs didn’t think he’d live, two of his best friends had died within the three years prior). i want to believe in any afterlife but the theory that’s there’s nothing seems more plausible to me, however, stories like these always get me thinking there’s something after this…
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2023.05.27 22:21 meloiseb question pour voyager à l'étranger en France depuis un américain avec des restes incinérés
Je vis en Amérique, mais ma mère est née en France. C'était toujours son souhait d'avoir des cendres dispersées aux Sables D'Olonnes. J'ai déjà trouvé l'entreprise qui fait ce service aux Sables. Mais il est très difficile de trouver le temps d'y aller et d'organiser le voyage. Mon père me dit que c'est la loi que je dois faire cette cérémonie dans l'année suivant sa mort. Je ne trouve aucune loi en ligne, mais je me demande si c'est parce que je cherche les mauvais termes. Je suis citoyen français mais je n'ai pas mes papiers ni mon passeport qui le prouvent. Elle est dans une urne approuvée par la TSA, et j'ai un document du salon funéraire qui dit qu'il est approuvé pour les voyages. Quelqu'un peut-il dire si mon père dit la vérité ou non ? Désolé pour le mauvais français, j'ai utilisé un traducteur français.
elle est décédée le 7 novembre 2022
I live in America, but My mom was born in France. It was always her wish to have ashes scattered at Les Sables D’Olonnes. I already found the company who does that service in Les Sables. But it’s very hard to find the time to go there and organize the trip. My dad is telling me that it is the law that I have to do this ceremony within 1 year of her death. I cannot find any law online but I wonder if it’s because I’m searching the wrong terms.
I am a French citizen but I do not have my papers or passport that show it. She is in a TSA approved urn, and I do have a document from the funeral home that says it’s approved for travel.
Can anyone advise if my dad is saying the truth or not? Sorry for bad French I used a French translator..
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2023.05.27 20:27 miroslovemusic (Offer) 80 For Brady 4K, Marlow HD, Missing HD, Halloween Ends 4K, Top Gun Maverick 4K, The Bad Guys 4K, Nope 4K etc plus Canada/UK codes (ISO) Operation Fortune, 65, John Wick 4, D&D, Knock At The Cabin, Tar, 3000 Years Of Longing, Amsterdam, X-Men Rogue Cut ALL 4K
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2023.05.27 18:22 TimeToGetShitty RIP my 6 year old Peace Lily, Isabel. You kept me oxygenated and focused through my worst health episodes. Here’s hoping it will be long live her daughter, Celeste, moving forward.
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This is an update on my Peace Lily. I had this exact plant for 6 years, completely uneventfully. The only major illness she ever had was one very minor issue a year ago with fungus gnats that cleared up in about a month (hell yes!) submitted by TimeToGetShitty to plantclinic [link] [comments]
About two months ago, I re-potted for the first time since I moved to my new place two years ago. Isabel had given me a couple of big, beautiful, bright white blooms in those two years, as well as a tiny baby green one in the dead of a Minnesota Winter for some reason lol. Maybe she was just happy.
Starting in late March/early April, she had been drooping, even though her leaves were clean and shiny, and her soil was damp. She had two suckers, but one had died and needed to be pulled and removed.
I didn’t think much of it, and decided to wait until I absolutely needed to repot. I mean, the Mother plant and other sucker (foreshadowing) would take the nutrients from any decay from that one, right?
So, I misted her, thinking it was a humidity thing, and nothing changed. Then, Winter ended, and everyone and their dog started buying and selling garden supplies. Perfect timing.
So, I figured she’d eaten all her nutrients and just needed a new bag of soil, and honestly, I wanted to put her in a pot that was easier to move.
So, I dug her up and noticed root rot, but strangely, there wasn’t a strong smell like there usually is with root rot.
Half of her roots were just powdery. Like. I touched them and they just Thanos snapped into the void. It was weird. They looked and felt just like dry soil, but it was clearly the roots, they were still attached to her.
You know how when you burn a cotton ball or something fluffy and sometimes the ashes kind of keep the shape of the item as it burns? It kind of looked like that.
Sorry I didn’t take any pictures. I was kind of freaking out when it happened.
So anyway, I sprayed her rhizome with my hose to wash away all of the dirt and dead roots, and I had a sit and examined her.
Everything looked fine, so I shaved off the remaining stumps of dead root with a clean razor just to be safe, and repotted her again.
At this point, I was worried about repotting shock on top of whatever was making her sick, but I had, and still have, no idea what happened to her.
I think it must be a bacterial pathogen, given the response to the Peroxide. I do have a small home lab, but I don’t have the ability to identify just any bacteria on the planet. If anyone has any insight, please do tell.
Back to Isabel’s saga. She continued to die, so my Mom suggested I fertilize her to give her nutrients and strength, and I like to use coconut water fr various reasons, so I did that. Nothing changed, for better or worse.
I then used a pinch of blood meal. That made the soil vaguely sticky when (in the future) i next went to repot, again suggesting some bacteria that maybe fed on the material.
I then moved her to a jar of water, and added the aforementioned Peroxide solution. I used the same solution when she had fungus gnats to kill the larvae and eggs.
Sidenote, She was very perky and strong while I was treating the gnat problem, lol. I almost considered just continuing that, but that’s kinda dumb, so I didn’t.
Anyway, her rot slowed, then I posted my first post about her, and someone suggested not keeping her in Peroxide solution, so I took her out and put her in clear distilled water.
The day after next, her water was cloudy, so I took her out, and noticed black, slimy pits in her rhizome. Again, I’m thinking “This has to be a bacteria, it’s making slimy growths and sh!t”
So, I took another clean razor and chopped Celeste off, because that part of the rhizome, though I was nervous since it didn’t look like it had any roots, had no rot spots.
At this point, there was finally a smell, and it was rank. Like a rotten potato. Again, I’m thinking bacteria.
I’m unashamed to admit that I cried and I mourned.
Isabel is officially dead. Rest in Peace (Lily)
Don’t worry, I’m not so unstable as to have a funeral for a plant. But like. I did kinda want to.
Celeste is the little remaining piece of rhizome that wasn’t yet infected. She did have, apparently, one tiny root start on that little rhizome chunk, so here,s hoping she’ss make it.
I know that the Oxygen content of Peroxide can help encourage rooting and kill whatever is infecting, as well as break down nutrients and make them easier for the plant to absorb.
I also know that coconut water is high in Potassium, which is involved in water and nutrient movement within the plants tissues and cells, in enzyme activation, and ATP (cellular respiration) as well as contains rooting hormones and growth hormones. Makes sense, coconuts are literally seeds, and the water is the part that makes the seed grow.
Anyway, anide from Peroxide and coconut water, I’m not sure what else to do, and I’m not even sure what concentrations I need of the materials I have. I’v been using the recommended ratios on such credible/s sources like Wikihow and random gardening YouTube shorts.
As of now, She’s in what I’m affectionately calling a hospital jar, and on what I think basically qualifies as root chemo lol.
By that, I mean she’s back in the Peroxide solution until she develops at least one usable, strong root, and that tiny, tiny little shoot of new growth gives me a whole, proper leaf, all without any rot, and the root is nice and white.
Admittedly, this solution is not the strong stuff I used to kill the gnats. Basically, I have, like, a 3-ounce mini stemless wineglass she’s in, and into that goes about a millilitre or two of Peroxide. Like a splash.
Anyway, if she recovers, she goes to clear, straight distilled water, no peroxide, but I will add, and I’m spitballing here, about the same amount (a mil or two) of coconut wat to encourage growth until she has three good, proper roots, then I will try soil again.
Both the solution and the clear water, of course, changed every day.
And I’m not taking her out of the Peroxide solution again until I can visibly see progress, or she dies. Last time I took the plant out, I killed Isabel. I don’t know, or even think Isabel would have survived even if I did keep her in solution, but even still, I’m not risking it. This specific plant, as you can tell, is very important to me, and this propagation is the last piece I have left.
Isabel proper was actually my first ever proper, real house plant that was entirely my own. I’m going to try any and everything I can think of to keep this last piece alive.
Any Peace-Lily-specific advice is welcome and appreciated. I’m not sure what species, since while she is my plant, she was actually gifted to me by my Dad.
Sorry for the veritable thesis, lol. I’m Autistic, plants are a special interest of mine, this specific plant means a lot to me, this is an update post, I left out a lot of info from the first post. I know it’s a mess. Thank you much to anyone who’s read this whole thing through and is willing to help!