Home depot near rowland heights ca
Venlil Metal Ch.2 - We’re not all bad
2023.06.04 05:04 oobanooba- Venlil Metal Ch.2 - We’re not all bad
well, we're back again. now with more characters! Enjoy.
for the universe And u/VeryUnluckyDice
for implanting a tumor into my brain, go read his story 'Playing by ear' if you haven't already! [First]-[Next]
----- Memory transcription subject: Anaw, Venlil citizen Date [standardized human time]: October 23, 2136
It was one of those brief moments when I was on my own. Just after I separated from my working herd but before I joined my familial herd. I bought some nice fruit salad from a place down the street. As I made my way to my way to the plaza I saw that musical duet was performing there. The duo was made up of a venlil and a Krakotl. And they were performing a popular pop song by some band, ‘I love you like the Herd’ by ‘The Sneeples’ I think? To be honest I wasn't too familiar with the current trends in music, I've always listened to what my mother listened to. Never gave it much thought really. I noticed how many people had stopped to listen to them play. I want people to see me like that! It would be so cool! To be a star, to guide the herd instead of just following it? Wouldn’t that be spectacular? Or even impress Vemly…
I figure I should find a seat, realizing there isn’t any room in the plaza itself. I have to search Elsewhere.
I look round the corner to see… a human! I have never seen one in person before but here? the closest shelter is a city over. And they seem to be alone. Which seems unusual. They don't seem to notice me so that's good. My curiosity getting the better of me, I made my way to a seat where I could watch the predator without being noticed.
The human was holding their head in their hands, their gaze presumably cast down toward the concrete tiles of the plaza though I had no way to be sure thanks to the glossy black mask that covered their face. They didn't seem to be moving aside from one of their legs bouncing seemingly in time with the music.
My meal was almost finished when suddenly the predator rose from their seat and started walking towards the buskers. At their full height, they were quite tall, but maybe my shorter-than-average stature was to blame.
Their approach caused the gathered crowd to scatter most people. those that remained kept their distance. When the human arrived at the buskers' setup the krakotl singer faltered and forgot the lyrics. The human tilted their head at this and seemed to study them for a moment before pulling out their pad and touching it to the tip receiver before turning to leave. If a predator can appreciate our music they can’t possibly be so bad right?
Someone must have called the exterminators because exterminator officer Ezin and two other officers arrived on the scene. The exterminators showed up almost too quickly. usually, they’re really slow, like that time when-
The exterminators raised their flamethrowers toward the human
“Predator! You’re coming with me” Ezin yelled at the human.
The human raised their hands and was quickly restrained by the two officers, with the head exterminator turning to the crowd.
Ezin addressed the crowd
“Civilians! Thanks to my hard work the predator has been restrained and you are safe once more!” It doesn't seem like the predator didn't do anything wrong… why are they being taken away?
My need to find out what is going on overriding all my better judgment I decided to follow the exterminators to the Deep Lake office.
But first I’m finishing my fruit salad. Yummy yummy!
I arrived at the exterminator's office and headed up to the front desk. There was a snowy white venlil at the counter.
“You here about the recent incident?” she droned, without even taking her eyes off her pad. There has been an incident?
“No I'm just here about the human from the plaza” I responded
“Just saying yes would've wasted much less of my time sir” the venlil responded, only now seeming to have found the time to look up from her pad.
“Just wait here and someone will be with you in a moment” She pointed to the seats set up at the side of the room. They were all empty.
even I couldn’t find any more reason to talk to this person so I sat down at the end. These chairs really aren't very comfortable… no matter, ill be through in a jiffy. Maybe I’ll have a look at these pamphlets to pass some time.
I reach over to the stand picking out the first one available, ‘What to do If a predator moves into your apartment?’ No thanks, I've had enough stress already. ‘Top 10 signs that your human is actually plotting to eat you!’ In the future even the pamphlets are clickbait. Go back to writing bleat posts. ‘Rainbow socks to be banned in Deep Lake Area’ What are socks?
I spun the stand around and spotted a hand-drawn-looking pamphlet. My curiosity piqued I opened it up. ‘Exterminator Ezin for emperor’ The Venlil don't even have a president. How can you get a role that doesn't exist? And I'm pretty sure you won't become emperor by winning an election. Anyway, what time is it? I feel like I’ve been waiting for more than a claw, I should really be home by now.
“Anaw, come on up” It was the senior exterminator Koll. I have seen him a couple times on the local news giving important announcements. If you've ever seen a buff venlil, you haven’t. Not until you have seen Koll. It's been said that he once fought an entire squadron of armors, bare-paw, on his own, and won. After which he retired to live a more peaceful life on venlil prime. Though that’s hard to believe, When I saw him in person, standing in Infront of me? I could believe it.
Koll asked me to give a brief rundown of the whole incident, a request which I had no trouble complying with.
After a moment of contemplation koll spoke “Well, That does it then, the incident was clearly bogus and the human will be free to go.”
Koll gestured for me to follow him. We walked down the hall and then to the cell where the human was being held.
The predator looked up at Koll and then at me. Prompting Koll to start inputting the code on the cell, Koll broke the silence.
“Well predator, looks like a witness showed up and your stories match, you're free to go, get out of here.”
The senior exterminator left the room, leaving me with the predator… alone.
The predator rose to their full height. Turning their head right at me. I've actually never met a human before. What do I do? Are they plotting to eat me? Maybe I should've read that pamphlet.
“Hey, thanks.” the predator spoke softly. Their voice was bassy and smooth, not nearly as loud as I expected. I thought predators were supposed to growl or be aggressive! They probably don't want to scare me. I'm still really afraid though. Is that rude? Am I a bad person for being afraid?
They continued in their soft inflection.
“I don't think Sargent Fluff for brains would've let me out any time soon, so seriously, thanks for the help” Sargent fluff for brains? Are they talking about Exterminator Ezin?
I finally mustered up the courage to speak to the human
“n-no p-problem h-human”
The human lifted one hand to their mask, presumably where their chin would be. This gave me a chance to get a good look at them. The flesh of their paw, which I think they call hands, was a smooth pinkish-white, each finger being topped by a wide flat claw that was pink almost to the tip of their finger. Where they became white. Their glossy black mask covered their face entirely but left the back of their head exposed. the human had wavy yellow fur that reached all the way to their shoulders. They were wearing a thick top garment in navy blue, it had sleeves that reached all way to their wrists and had a hood that the human wasn't currently using. Their bottom garment was the same color but seemed to be made out of a rougher material.
The human stuck out their hand In what I recognized to be a greeting gesture.
“I’m Colton by the way. It's nice to meet you”
I placed my paw in their hand and they shook it up and down very gently as if they were unsure about the action themselves.
“I- I’m Anaw” my voice quivered
“It's nice to meet you, Anaw, though I have some belongings I have to collect”
Colton began walking to the front desk of the building. Curiosity once again won out over my need for sleep and I followed the human as they approached the desk. The white venlil was still there, and still seemed to be distracted by their pad, doom-scrolling Bleat probably. The attendant looks up from their pad and looks completely uninterested in the predator staring down at her. She looks back down making a clear effort to ignore the human.
“Can I get my guitar back now?” Colton asked the attendant.
“Confiscated weapons will be kept as evidence.” the attendant droned.
“My guitar is not a weapon! It's a musical instrument. It's personal, I need it.” pleaded Colton.
This finally made the lady look up from her pad with curiosity. Apparently thrown off by the human's response. The human wants an instrument back? That means that this human must be a musician!
At that moment Exterminator Ezin stepped out of his office, Now that he was out of uniform the full mass of his grey was on display. He wore a bandage around one of his paws. Seems like his shift was over and was on his way out. How do you even pack so much wool into an exterminator uniform?
The Exterminator must have been listening in on the conversation because he smirked almost predatorily.
Ezin spoke “Predator if you can somehow prove that primitive club isn't a weapon,”
Venom laced his tone, “Then you can have it back.”
The exterminator raised his bandaged hand toward the human.
“But I doubt you'll be able to.” Ezin gloated with the confidence of someone who knew they were untouchable.
Colton didn't give the exterminator the chance to goad them further and made for the exit. Shoving their clenched fists into their pockets. If the human is a musician, then they must know a lot about music! Vemly is really into human culture, if I could learn all about human music or even learn to play some then she would definitely be impressed!
I followed Colton out of the exterminator's office and steeled my nerves. I have to ask them if they could show me some human music! And then I can ask them to teach me? Before I could change my mind I yelled out.
The human stopped.
“C-can you show me?.. Your Human music?”
submitted by oobanooba-
to NatureofPredators [link] [comments]
2023.06.04 04:00 Kazevenikov Cryptid Chronicle - Chapter 31
Thanks and Credits in the Comments Section due to LONG chapter.
Chapter 31: A Whale of a Tale and it’s All True
“IT’S FUCKING J-POD!”
Kalai watched in shock and awe as the two humans collectively lost their minds, hopping up and down and letting loose a series of high pitched vocalizing as she, Papa, and Mama Sakalbi stared in confusion at the two ecstatic aliens.
Andy turned and ran back to where Kalai and her parents were still staring in amazement and held his hand out, face alight and happier than she’d ever seen him before. “Binoculars! Quick! I want to see who’s out there!” Mama Sakalbi tentatively held them out, and he took them with a nod of thanks before rushing back to the bow. Kalai started as he jumped up on the bow and balanced against the roller horns to spot the black and white whales that were swimming fast towards the net.
“Eyes on Mama Shachi! Look, over there, see her?” Kalai approached cautiously as Andy pointed in the direction of a cluster of porpoising black shapes that were coming nearer.
“Eyes on! I got Grammie Slick out there too; the WHOLE POD’S HERE!” Jackie cut loose an undulating cry and waved her hands as little geysers of water and air shot out from the water on the other side of the net.
Kalai nearly jumped when a miniature version of the Orcas from the clone tank at Headquarters breached the water, leaping almost twice her height into the air before splashing back down in a massive wave.
“Look at that! Butterball’s getting some good air these days!” Andy crowed as he hopped back down from the bow and passed the binoculars to Jackie.
“Butterball?” Mama Sakalbi asked as she and Papa joined them. Kalai stared as the Orcas formed a line and charged at the middle of the ‘S’ bend in the net before diving down in front of it, sending a wave that pushed the corks back. She saw the spouts and the dorsal fins rise again for another charge at the net.
“He’s the baby, only about four years old. Grammie Slick’s taking the family hunting, see how they’re flattening the net out? We’re about to have a great fucking day
!” Andy took Jackie’s shotgun and took it back to the cabin as Kalai and her parents crowded the rail.
“What are they doing?” Mama Sakalbi’s question was directed at Jackie and the woman turned to answer with a gigantic smile.
“Herding! See the ones circling around the net?” Jackie pointed to the two dorsal fins that were almost invisible in the fog that was starting to burn off in the morning sun that had started to clear the eastern mountains. “They’ll be starting to round up small schools of salmon once they’re done turning our net into a reef. Right now, they’re running along the line and probably seeing what they have to work with.”
Mama Sakalbi did a double take, “You must be joking, that level of intelligence would almost be-”
“Human?” Jackie interrupted with a smile, “Yeah, that’s our original teachers out there. We learned to fish from them
“I was going to say ‘sentient’, but I take your point. What I want to know is, what are they doing
?” Mama Sakalbi gestured out at them, with a bewildered look on her face.
“They’re using the net as a sea wall. Thing is, the net’s hard to see in the water, but the fish can feel it. They’ll put their heads into the net, but that doesn’t catch them. They’ll try to swim around it so that’s why we put an ‘S’ bend. That’s where most of the fish get tangled.” Andy returned and picked up the explanation. “See in the center of the line? That fin with the black and white little checkmark behind it? That’s Grammie Slick, the Matriarch. She’s around sixty now, and grew up out here LONG before you all came down. They don’t always do this, but I guess with you all keeping the fishing fleets docked, she saw the net and wanted a big meal for the family. They’re going to keep pushing the net until it’s in the shape of a crescent and herd a bunch of small schools into a big baitball with pickets to keep the fish pinned in the middle. You watch, there’ll be salmon jumping all over in the middle as they school up.”
“That’s when you’ll see them charge up the center and take big old mouthfuls of salmon. It’ll be a smorgasbord for ‘em!” Jackie pulled up Andy’s omnipad and started recording.
“Wait, but you hate seals for competing with you for food, why are you this excited about Orcas who take so much more?” Papa asked as he also took out his omnipad and started recording as the pod of Orcas finished repositioning their net just as Andy described.
“Because they’re using the nets as a reef to trap the fish! See? Look! There they go! The wolves are out scaring every salmon in the area here!” Kalai dug her own omnipad out at Andy’s words and watched as the dorsal fins sank below the waves, with only a faint and fading wake to tell where they’d gone.
“Now watch ‘em set pickets! They’re going to start patrolling the outside of the net. When they get enough salmon in the middle, they’re going to charge. When they do, watch the entire
middle section of our corks go under from the salmon trying to get away. They get whole heaping mouthfuls of food and we get a full
Kalai watched the Orcas swimming in circles around the net like Helix Sharks, and felt a pang of fear seeing the big predators that seemed so gentle and inquisitive in the tank. “But what if they get caught in the net?”
Jackie suppressed a laugh before sweeping an arm out at the net. “I’ve never seen that happen before, and I haven’t even heard of it happening before… at least not here in the Salish Sea. All our Orcas grew up around these nets, so they’ll either avoid them or use them like they are right now.”
“I think it’s because they can see them and the fish can’t. Either way, we’re in for a show!” Andy patted Kalai on the back before pushing Kalai and Mama Sakalbi forward.
For a long while, the surface was calm, save for the circling Orcas as they all watched. Then, by degrees, there was movement on the surface of the water as fish the length of Kalai’s arm started to jump and kick in the baitball. Kalai watched, fascinated, as Orcas seemed to appear and disappear along the edges but never approached the middle of the net.
All the fins disappeared from the surface and an eerie stillness settled over the water. Suddenly, the water in the middle of the crescent erupted, with hundreds of fish shooting out of the water and a sudden surge that hit and pushed the corks outward before they sank completely out of sight. Jackie and Andy started vocalizing those strange undulating cries again, raising their fists in the air before shouting something in their language. From as best as Kalai could guess, it was encouragement as the Orcas started breaching and jumping. In those moments, Kalai could catch glimpses of their mouths full of salmon.
Kalai watched as the terrified fish swarmed towards the net, and watched as many seemed to jump over it and swim away as the Orcas gorged themselves on the enormous school of salmon they had trapped. It was an awe inspiring sight to see, and Kalai lost herself in the moment watching the amazing display of symbiotic hunting and fishing between them and the Orcas.
The engine of the boat turning over broke the spell they were all under as Andy moved the boat at a dead slow pace back towards the net. “Alright, let’s haul it in and reset for ‘em! Jackie! Get on the bow with the billhook!” Jackie whooped in agreement and gently pushed passed Kalai to grab a long pole with a small metal hook at the end.
“We’re gonna have to work fast. They’re hungry, and we all want salmon today,” Andy called over the sound of the engine as they approached the giant buoy that marked the end of the net. “Doc! Open that hatch back there and watch your step! Mrs. Vaida, stand clear in the cabin; I want no accidents today, and three on deck’s going to be a crowd with how many fish we’re going to be taking in. Kalai, I want you back in the-”
Kalai shook her head as she put her omnipad away. “I can do it! Let me help!” she was riding the high feeling of watching the Orcas, and seeing Andy and Jackie preparing to go to work while she was to be just a passenger galled her.
Kalai saw Andy give Jackie a look that she couldn’t quite interpret. “Alright, but you’ll work with me picking fish. Jackie, you’re on the Drum; trade places with me!”
Kalai saw Jackie huff and give Andy a piercing look as she handed off the billhook. “Watch out for jellies, they tend to explode,” the native woman muttered to Kalai as she took over at the net drum’s controls. Kalai was about to volunteer to grab the line with the hook, given her longer reach, but Andy had already leaned almost all the way over the side. Kalai had a momentary scare as Andy seemed to dip forward, seemingly in danger of falling overboard, until he seemed to almost levitate himself using his lower legs back into the boat and pulled the line over the roller horns. She stood there for a moment, unsure of what to do when Andy braced a foot against the side and began to pull on the line and feed it back towards Jackie. “Way, haul away, we’ll hang and haul together! Way, haul away, haul away Joe!”
Though she didn’t understand the words, Kalai knew a sailing song when she heard one and didn’t wait for any instruction. She moved forward opposite Andy and lent a hand, pulling the heavy line in to the cadence of his chant. After two verses, Kalai heard the whine of hydraulics and the slack in the line behind them went taught.
“Stand back! Here we go!” Andy called to her and the line began pulling the net back aboard. Kalai looked back to see that Jackie had wrapped the line around the center pole of the drum, with the wheel turning to pull the line and net in out of the water. A small set of guide poles that moved when Jackie twitched the controls kept the line evenly distributed on the drum as the first corks and the dripping wet net began to appear out of the water.
“Put your hoods up!” Andy yelled at her over the noise of the machines, and demonstrated the motion. “It’ll keep the water, seaweed and Jellies out of your face and eyes, and take this!” Andy tossed her what appeared to be a handkerchief and he mimed the act of tying it around her face like a mask.
“What about you? You’re sleeveless!” Kalai’s voice was slightly muffled from the cloth as she tied it around her face before pulling up both hoods.
Andy didn’t respond, except to grin at her as he leaned out to watch the net coming up out of the water before it got pulled aboard.
From behind her, Kalai heard Jackie start singing another human sailing song. It was a bit fast paced, and Andy joined in for the chorus. On the third time she heard it, she joined in too. “Blow ye winds in the mornin’, Blow ye winds, high ho! Haul away your running gear, And blow ye winds, high ho!
“Coming up!” Andy shouted as there were several loud thunks before six large salmon appeared in the giant fluorescent green tangle of the net. The drum stopped, bringing the fish to a halt as Andy pulled on the corkline and scurried his hands back and forth, gathering the net up as he did until he reached the first fish. Kalai watched in awe as he seemed to magically pull the fish from the tangle and shake it out onto the deck. The second one seemed to be resting on top of the tangle and he flipped it over the corkline and shook the fish out onto the deck.
“Just watch these first few. When you get a feel for how I’m doing this, jump in. Until then, slide these beauties back towards the stern. Jackie’ll pitch ‘em into the hold.”
Kalai nodded and watched Andy’s movements intently. It looked like sorcery, with how fast he moved his hands and zeroed in on a fish. As soon as he was done, he’d whistle to Jackie, who kept singing the cadence out to pull more of the net in, only to stop when more fish were pulled up and over the horns.
The song changed twice before Kalai felt confident enough to jump in. She almost got tangled in the net herself trying to pull out her first fish, but Andy gave the net a quick tug and she was free again. Maddeningly, the fish had simply fallen out of the net without any help from her, and she fumed just long enough for Andy to point to one that was closer to her. “Hoist up the thing, batten down the whatsit! What’s that thing spinning, somebody should stop it! Turn hard to Port! That’s not Port, NOW I GOT IT! Trust me, I’m in control!”
On the second refrain, Kalai managed to dig her first fish out and drop it to the deck. She let out a whoop, and Andy paused for a moment to give her a quick applause.
“That’s one, girl! There’s a thousand left if we’re lucky!” Jackie called out as Andy sang a verse and tackled another fish in the net.
“Keep an eye on the lead line; make sure it doesn’t go over the corks!” Andy called as Kalai ran down her second fish and was about to throw the excess net over the other side. She stopped, and Andy helped her get the fish without tangling the net.
It took until the end of the song for Kalai to find her rhythm, and soon she and Andy were running down fish in the net in a crisp and quick manner. Kalai felt like she could go faster, but Andy had cautioned her to keep pace with the songs, as there was still a lot of net to go. When Kalai spared a glance at the length of net still in the water, she saw that Andy wasn’t kidding. It looked like they hadn’t even really started to reel it all in. Ok, it’s hard work, but so is sailing, and he’s my size so I should be able to keep up with him. If he can do it, I can do it! “Haul away you rollin’ kings! Heave away, Haul away! Haul away you’ll hear me sing, We’re bound for South Australia!”
Andy was impressed. Kalai had jumped in without complaint, and she was very coachable. He could feel himself start to flag as they were starting to come to the last third of the net, but Kalai’s persistence, even though she was sweatier and more haggard than he was, kept him going.
The pile of salmon was almost as deep as their calves, and the deck was getting slick with fish slime. For that matter, so was Andy. In a momentary lull in the fish coming over the horns, Andy caught a glimpse of himself shimmering with all the scales that had flown off the fish as they scraped against the net to hit the deck, flopping. He took a big gulp of air and Kalai groaned as she straightened up, cracking her back as she twisted and bent to relieve her aching muscles.
Andy groaned a bit and looked back towards the stern. It was getting hard to see over the amount of net they’d pulled back in, but he could see Doc and Mrs. Vaida doing their best to help throw and shove the piles of salmon into the hold. Everybody’s getting their hands dirty today. Andy smiled and heaved a happy sigh. This, this is what I want. Being out on the water and doing good, hard work.
“SHIT, JELLYFISH!” Kalai shouted as she twisted away to hide her face behind her rain slicker hood. Andy blinked just in time as a wet squelching sound sent a spray of disintegrating jellyfish exploding all over the bow as the net bunched up and got squeezed together.
Andy felt it splatter all over his arms, neck, and face, before he felt it start to slide down his shirt to his chest. Almost immediately, he started to feel the burn. His arms, neck, and chest he could stand, but the blossoming pain on his lips, eyelids, cheeks, and most horribly the inside of his nose overwhelmed all his conditioned pain tolerance.
“FUCK!” Andy screamed. “FUCKING FUCKER! RIGHT IN MY FUCKING FACE! GOD FUCKING DAMNIT! FUCK!” Andy only barely avoided bringing his hands to his face. It was a hard fought thing to deny his instinct to try and scrape it off, but he felt his boots loose purchase and his feet slide out from under him. He hit the pile of fish that surrounded him hard. He was aware of Kalai yelling for her father and Mrs. Vaida, while Jackie’s braying laugh carried over everything else.
Andy felt Kalai trying to grab him, but her gloves were too slick to get a grip and all she did was spread the stingers more evenly over his arms. Andy kept his eyes squeezed shut as he heard Jackie start to direct the confused and panicking aliens.
“Hold your breath, cuz, vinegar incoming!”
Andy felt the bitter stinging splash as Jackie poured a steady stream of vinegar out from what he assumed was the giant jug he kept for these occasions underneath the little kitchenette in the cabin. Though nothing about the intensity of the burn changed, in the back of his mind, Andy knew that it was killing the stinging cells.
“Alright, Kally, take that bucket and fill it with seawater from over the side, then dump it on him.”
Andy sputtered a bit and spit as he scrabbled onto his knees. He steadied himself with one hand on the rail beside him and the other which found the corkline. He kept his eyes shut and growled as the burning spread from his hairline down to his navel. A sudden bracing splash of cold water nearly bowled him back over. Without warning, Andy hadn't had time to get a breath and he sputtered and yowled as the water soaked down under his rain gear.
Andy shook his head like a dog, whipping his braid back and forth before daring to open his eyes. “Son of a BITCH!” Andy growled as he got a look at Kalai holding an empty bucket, while Jackie was shoo’ing Mrs. Vaida and Dr. He’osforos away to give him some room.
“Jesus, quit your bawlin,’ you big baby, you’re acting like you’ve never been stung before!” Jackie called back to him as Andy ripped the gloves off his hands and plunged them over the side to clean off the stingers.
“It’s in my fucking nose you horse’s ass!” Andy shouted back as he splashed his face. A few strings of purple stingers fell into the water and Andy reared back aboard. “Ugh, get another bucket of seawater! I can still feel this shit!”
“Andrei, as a medical professional, I advise you to cease work and-”
Andy looked over as Dr. He’osforos spoke but waved him off mid sentence. “I appreciate it Doc, but I’ve had it far worse than this. There’s a brown and yellow bottle in one of the drawers under the bench that says ‘Motrin’. Get me the bottle or enough to tranq a cow, and I’ll go back to work just fine.”
Kalai let loose a piercing scream and Andy looked over just in time to see her rocketed herself backwards, dropping the bucket over the side. The Doctor caught his daughter before she fell into the hold, but he too had a look of fear plastered on his face. Andy and Jackie moved to the side to see what had scared her so badly, and the two of them couldn’t help but laugh out loud.
Grammie Slick and two of her daughters were there, sticking their heads out of the water with their mouths open, while Butterball was playing with the bucket.
Jackie laughed and stuck her hand out, rubbing the Orca matriarch on the snout. “Raggedy Andy’s fine, Grammie Slick! He’s just milking it for sympathy from these gullible hwun’eetums!”
“What in the Balance of Nature is going on here?” Mrs. Vaida’s shocked voice caused Andy and Jackie to look at her as she stared dumbfounded at the Orcas that were gathering alongside the boat.
“Oh they’re just saying ‘hi.’” Andy shrugged with a smile, despite the burning.
“More like ‘What the hell, cousins, you still got fish to pick. Quit loafin’ around and get another set in!’”
“Jackie, Motrin… NOW!” Andy growled at her. Jackie blew a raspberry at him before diving into the cabin.
“They’re pretty friendly, if you’d like to be introduced,” Andy held out a hand and motioned for Kalai and her father to step forward. Andy dipped his hand in again to make sure it was clear of any stinging cells, before he gently guided the hesitant Kalai to stick her ungloved hand out toward Grammie Slick.
One of the daughters blew a spout before sliding back under water, but Grammie gave a few clicks before briefly touching Kalai’s outstretched hand. “Kalai, this is Grammie Slick, Matriarch of J-Pod. Grammie, this is Kalai… a purple hwun’eetum.” Andy laughed a bit at the look of incredulity on Kalai’s face and the concern on her father’s.
There was a series of shutter clicks from behind Andy, and he turned to see Sakalbi snapping pictures as fast as she could. Kalai was clearly torn between fear and wonder as she held perfectly still and silent for Grammie, who was letting her touch her before she slid back under the water herself. Andy laughed as several clicks and whistles from the pod reverberated through the hull of the boat and he leaned back in.
“Alright, break’s over,” Andy called as he caught the flying bottle of pills Jackie threw at him. He popped two and swallowed them dry before washing the gloves off and putting them on. The extra rinse would have to wait, and he’d have to tough it out until they got back to shore. His boots squelched as he picked his way through the fish on the deck to get back to his station and nodded for Jackie to restart the drum.
It was another twenty minutes before the last of the net was pulled aboard and they were able to clear away all the fish into the hold. Andy stuck his head in and smiled. In a single set, they’d filled three quarters of it, and they had more than enough fish for the gathering and to feed another ten to fifteen families besides. The spouts and the clicks of J-Pod hanging around the boat, however, told Andy that they wanted their reef back and were still hungry.
Andy ordered them to prep the net for another set and helmed his boat again, only to bomb out in a straight line and let J-Pod take care of the fishing from that point on. Once they’d finished, Andy moved the boat out of the Orcas’ way and stood outside the cabin with Jackie while the three aliens crowded the bow, watching and recording the whales going to work a second time.
“Ok, I think we might get a moment to talk,” Andy muttered to Jackie in Salishian. “New orders from the Council. There’s going to be a raid.”
Jackie sucked in a breath and looked at him, all levity gone. “Cambrians, Militia, or the Dummy Bunnies?”
“Militia and the Interior.”
Jackie whistled softly in surprise as her eyebrows shot up. “Really poking the bear, cuz… When and where?”
“Uncle Willy wants us to hit the Militia Supply Depot out by Tanner on Saturday,” Andy growled quietly as he watched Kalai pointing to Grammie Slick’s dorsal as she swam out on the picket around the net.
“You mean the one close to the Snoqualmish?”
“Yeah. Full raid, we’re to hit it and take any supplies, especially military, that we can and destroy what we can’t. The messier we can make it the better. We’ll meet up with the Resistance on the old Bessemer Logging road by Hancock Creek and they get half for taking the credit. Me and Chuck’ve been assigned to ‘lead’ you.” Andy nodded and tried to flick some of the fish scales off himself, but got nowhere.
Jackie sat down on the rail with a groan before looking back up at him with a smirk. “You mean babysit on overwatch while we do the real work.”
Andy pursed his numb lips together and considered the ramifications of folding his arms on the jellyfish burns that had started to go quiet thanks to the Motrin. “Grandma and the Council want me to ‘get my hands dirty.’” He gritted his teeth in frustration.
“What? I’m sorry, that sentence made zero sense.” Jackie shook her head like she’d just been slapped.
Andy couldn’t keep the frustration and anger out of his tone when he spoke. “Apparently there are doubts about my loyalty to the tribe and whether or not I’ve lost my way.”
Jackie huffed in amusement. “Everyone knows the Council’s fucking stupid, but this is a new level of dumb. You got us land back, you got them to allow you to break the rules to feed our people, they’re fixing the fuck ups on our waterways because of you and they think you’ve gone to the dark side?” Jackie started laughing at the nonsense of the politics.
“Last time we talked, you thought I was playing with fire and-” Andy started to throw back at her before she snorted loudly.
“Results talk, cuz. Three of our Hatcheries returned, and my whole family drawing good money in Imperial Credits? Fuck, even if you had sold out, we need more Clan Heads doing the same thing.” She smiled as she nodded towards their guests on the bow.
“They still don’t trust that I know what I’m doing,” Andy growled as he folded his arms unconsciously and immediately regretted it.
Jackie snorted. “Of course they don’t. You didn’t talk to them or get their permission first. Hell, I’m surprised your grandma didn’t chuck you out on your ear for even suggesting that you should work for the dummy bunnies.” Jackie stretched and hopped up and around Andy to grab a water bottle. “But it’s working out. There’s land being returned, money in our hands, and food about to be on our table. You’re doin’ what a Chief is supposed to do.”
Andy scoffed and started to object. “I’m no Chief-”
Jackie gave his shoulder a slap and grinned evilly as a starburst of pain and burning cut through the painkillers, shutting Andy up mid-protest. “You keep saying you aren’t, but that don’t make it true.” She resumed her seat as Andy fought the yowl of pain back so as not to give her the satisfaction. “I mean, case in point, what are you going to do with all these fish Grammie’s catching for us right now?”
Andy blinked a few times as he regained his composure and thought seriously about his answer. “We’ll pull fifteen for the gathering they got invited to… Then all the fish you can pack into the truck goes to the Exiles. The rest? I’ll call Chuck and get some folks from the Council to claim the rest and distribute it to the families that need it.”
Jackie deepened her voice and adopted a cowboy drawl. “He never eats until he sees the pots are full of meat in the lodges of the widows and orphans-”
“That’s Comanche Law, not Salish, and that’s from a John Wayne movie, you ass.” Andy huffed and Jackie giggled wickedly, flipped him off.
“Still haven’t refuted my point, cuz.” Jackie’s singsong voice caused Andy to glare spitefully at her, until she raised her hands defensively. “Alright, you’re not a Chief. So, Not Chief Tsu’titsi’uqw; you need to get your hands dirty and lead a raid. I’ll scrape up what we need and scout the target. You just meet up with us Saturday night at the Snoqualmish Casino and I’ll put a gun in your hands. Don’t worry, we’ll only get dirty enough to make the Council happy.”
“I’ll be a bit late; I’m escorting them to the Hwatcom Family Gathering on Friday.” Andy took a step back as Jackie stood up and twisted a bit to stretch out.
“No surprise there, grandpa’s an old school traditional Indian. They’re dummies, but they’re trying to do right by us, finally. Again, thanks to you, Chie-” Andy slapped the back of her head hard and growled at her, but she just started laughing, making him even madder.
“Alright, enough. Let’s get on the bow and not look like we’re sketchy Indians plotting to attack an Imperial fort.” Andy snarled, shoving her past him while she just kept laughing.
Andy stomped forward, aware of the wet sounds his boots made as he walked. Kalai turned and smiled at him as he moved to stand beside her and her father. “So how are they doing out there?”
“They just started their attack. This is fascinating! Their coordination, their ingenuity, and adaptation to human activity is astounding! I wish I had brought observation drones!” Sakalbi was glued to the binoculars and holding her omnipad up while she muttered observations into the speaker. Andy was content to watch as the pod put on a repeat performance and the net sagged again until they all came up and started swimming lazily around the net and the boat. All of them except Butterball and one of his older brothers. The two seemed to be getting into a jumping contest.
“He’s feeling a bit hyper. Must be nice to be full,” Jackie commented as the two whales took turns jumping out of the water and twisting in the air. Andy smiled and nodded and felt a hand go to his shoulder. He looked down and saw it was Kalai making eyes at him. Andy hid the grimace at the burn and gave her a wink.
“That one’s getting closer, should we be concerned?” Andy looked over at Dr. He’osforos and Kalai quickly moved her hand as they watched Butterball getting closer and closer with each jump.
Jackie hopped up and straddled the railing as Andy and Kalai shared a concerned look. Jackie hooked a hand around one of the roller horns and peered down into the water. “I don’t think so, I mean he knows we’re-”
The sudden appearance of a flying adolescent Orca only a scant few feet away from the boat right next to the lot of them cut Jackie off. Most of them only had enough time to watch the little playful bastard hang in the air for a moment before he twisted to almost shoulder punch the water as he came back down. Andy had just enough presence of mind to pull Kalai and her father down, and braced himself as the plume of water rose from where Butterball landed.
“Oh shi-” Andy heard Jackie say before water cascaded down on them and drenched them all, sending the boat rocking violently.
It took a moment for Andy to recover and he helped the two Shil back to their feet. “Quick check, is everyone alright?”
“HEY! WHAT THE HELL, BUTTERBALL! GRAMMIE! YOU HAVE A TALK WITH YOUR GRANDSON! HE’S GONNA GET SOMEONE KILLED ONE OF THESE DAYS!” Jackie screamed at the water, shaking her fist.
A camera shutter sounded and a dripping wet Mrs. Vaida stood, wide eyed in fear, staring out over the water.
Andy started laughing at the sight of his boss soaked to the bone, her hair and her fur a dripping mess. “That picture right there? You can title it: ‘Angry Native Woman Yells at Whale.’”
Kalai looked like she was on Krek’s doorstep. Akil’eas knelt next to her as he finished his examination and was looking over the readings on his omnipad. His daughter sat in front of the cabin on the little step, legs splayed out in front of her while she leaned against the railing on the side of the boat. Her father stood next to her as he finished a quick check of her vitals and her viral load.
“Unsurprisingly, you’re a bit elevated, but given your numbers over the last week, that’s saying that you’ve come back up to your normal levels.” Akil’eas had been worried. When they’d hauled in the net the second time, Kalai had stayed on the bow with the boy, Andy, while Akil’eas’d stood over the human woman’s shoulder and studied the controls.
Akil’ieas had also pitched in and helped fill the hold, but when he and Sakalbi could no longer stuff them in, they’d given up and stood out of the way. His old friend and colleague had spent the rest of the time recording, either the large predators that continued to circle and play around the boat, or the seemingly inefficient fishing practice of Andy and his people. No wonder he was so big, and his brother had been that strong. It beggared belief that their people worked at that backbreaking pace for so long, but there Andy stood, proud and tall at the end of it, while he and Sakalbi struggled to stay standing.
Akil’eas had to focus on keeping his hands from shaking and retrieved another water bottle for his exhausted daughter. Andy had them moving at a slow pace back towards a different harbor from the one they’d left that morning. They’d stopped briefly at the pier they’d started from to allow Jackie to disembark. The two humans packed all the fish that couldn’t fit in the hold up to Jackie’s truck and filled the bed of it without any help. She drove off with close to a hundred fish.
Now with the deck cleared, Andy told them they were on their way to the harbor most of his Band used. The trip had been slower going than the morning had been, but only because they were riding much lower in the water than they had been.
“King Triton’s farewell,” Kalai muttered looking up. Akil’eas followed his daughter’s gaze up to see a flock of white and gray seabirds calling out loudly as they kept pace with the boat as it headed towards the docks.
“It means work’s almost over. It’s a great sound, isn’t it?” Andy called out from the cabin where he sat at the helm.
Kalai shifted herself with great effort to look around the door to the cabin. “It sounds amazing.”
The smile Andy gave Kalai caused Akil’eas to have a pang of fatherly protectiveness, and only fatigue kept the scowl off his face. “Just wait, we’ll clean a few once we’ve off-loaded to the families. Fresh salmon tonight for everyone, and I’m cooking! Doc, we’d love to have you, too.”
“I’d love to but-”
Kalai grabbed his arm and stopped him. “Trust me, Papa, you don’t want to miss it.”
Akil’eas chewed his tongue for a moment, looking from Andy to Kalai. Sakalbi caught his eye and nodded emphatically. “Alright, if you’ll allow me to help. You must be exhausted.”
Andy beamed at Akil’eas, “You won’t hear me turn down free help.”
“Vaascon fellas don’t have no frills, Haul away, haul away! They’re plain and skinny as a lodthfish gill, And we’re bound away for Vaasconia!”
Kalai sat back and started singing between sips of water. Akil’eas sat down next to her and joined in the chorus for a Vaascon sailing song. It was strange to think that these humans also sang to their sea gods to placate them and coordinate the work. What else could you expect from a sailorman? Some things call to the soul across time and evidently even the gulf space and peoples.
“So heave him up my Turry Turry girls, Haul away, haul away! Heave him up and let the sails unfurl! And we’re bound away for Vaasconia!”
Andy’s voice joining in on the chorus startled Akil’eas and Kalai and they both turned to look back at him.
He gave them another wide grin, “I started learning some of the sail songs after Kalai told me about sailing on Shil.”
“Akil’eas, a word?” Sakalbi motioned with her head towards the bow and offered him a hand up. He followed her to the bow, leaving the two children singing together.
The harbor mouth was coming up fast, and between the noise of the engine and the net drum keeping them out of sight, there was some privacy. “I’ve heard some rumors about your feelings toward humans…” Sakalbi leaned against the railing, giving him the look that every teacher and professor had when questioning a belligerent student. When Akil’eas didn’t answer her, save to throw her back his own look, she continued. “Kalai is quite taken with Andy. It’s been quite a refreshing thing to see her come out of her shell.”
“It’s a vacation romance, nothing more.” Akil’eas felt his stomach clench and couldn’t stop himself from looking back.
“I don’t think so, Akil’eas. This is the first time I’ve seen her so on thorns and thistles around anyone, much less a male. She’s been very keen around him.” The smile she gave him was a bit galling, but he had to admit, he didn’t really know Kalai as well as Sakalbi and her spouses.
“He is… I’m sure he is a very nice young man, but as a fit consort for a soon to be Duchess? No, and I’ve yet to meet a human that is.” The thought of a human becoming the next Duke He’osforos was absurd. Sure there had been the occasional non-Shil Kho-liebhaberin or even the one Duke Aurar’ian He’osforos who was a Triki, but a human? “They’re far too individualistic and self centered to rise to the responsibilities of the Peerage.”
“That’s not exactly as large a sample size as you think it is, Leas. If you had Andy in your class, or on your crew, disregarding the fact that he’s human, what would your read on him be?”
Akil’eas locked his jaw and pursed his lips, defiantly. “I don’t know.”
“Come on, Leas, you’re better than me at reading people, and I’m damn good at it.” He hated how Sakalbi’s eyes flashed and her right ear would twitch when she thought she had the upper hand in an argument. He huffed a sigh and decided to play her little game, just to humor her enough so that she’d drop the subject.
“Dependable, fastidious and competent, judging by the state of his equipment and his boat. Self sacrificing, diligent, hard working, given what I’ve observed today. He’s got a temper, but it takes a bit to get there, and he’s carrying some pretty heavy emotional scars.” He’d not seen very much of Andy, but the old Sailing Master and Professor in him started to come out and assess the boy just as he would any of his students or junior sailors.
“That’s my read, too. Doesn’t sound so individualistic and self-centered to me. Blighted Nature, Leas, from what I’ve learned about him and his people, he broke with several of their traditions and customs to help us. He’s stuck his neck out far further for us than we would have for him and his people, for no other reason than to try and save his homeland. Were he an Erbian on Myr or even back home in Vaasconia, there’d be Groom-War over his hand.”
Akil’eas was a bit piqued about her statement, “What about your daughter? Kalai made no secret about little Sitry mooning after him, and her disapproval of their courtship.”
“She thinks she’s in love, and it very well might be that she is, but Kalai’s disapproval should tell you what it tells me, given your own rather astute assessment of the man.”
“HEY DOC! TAKE THE WHEEL, I GOTTA DRUM US IN!” Andy’s voice cut their conversation short as Akil’eas turned to look back around the drum. Andy waved him back as he slowed their approach to come in. “Take us to Dock 5, straight back and to port.”
“Straight back and to larboard, aye!” Akil’eas rattled off as he traded places with Andy at the helm.
Kalai heaved herself up to stand as Andy grabbed a large leather circle and ran forward to jump up on the bow. As Akil’eas piloted the boat into the harbor and made the turn, he saw a large crowd of humans gathered on the pier and the shore. As soon as they were in sight, he watched as Andy, standing tall, began to drum a beat and vocalize, projecting his voice over the water to those on shore. Akil’eas sputtered a bit in surprise as he guided the boat slowly towards the open mooring.
“That’s their call. His family’s song lets the people on shore know who he is and that he’s friendly.” Kalai looked back at Akil’eas before moving inside the cabin to stand next to her father. “All the families know it, but only he is allowed to sing it. It’s their version of a family crest and coat of arms. Elder Hwatcom taught us about those. There’ll be a reply in a second granting us permission to come ashore.”
There was indeed a response of drumming and singing from the assembly of humans as many started to crowd forward carrying what appeared to be coolers. Andy reappeared and took the controls back and reversed to kill their forward momentum as Sakalbi threw out their mooring lines to the waiting humans. Andy killed the engine and moved quickly out of the cabin to speak in a language that Akil’eas did not recognize. There seemed to be a bit of confusion from those gathered on the dock, but Andy opened the hatch to show the hold full of fish.
“Don’t thank me, thank them. Sockeye and Kings to all comers, courtesy of the Vaidas and the Vaida Warren!” Andy shouted happily in Vatikre as he pulled two giant fish out by their gills and handed them off to the applauding humans.
Sakalbi managed to shoot Akil’eas a smug look before she plunged her hands into the mass of fish and began helping Andy hand them out to the people.
Possible Late Post Due to Vacation. I will try to post on time, but it may be as late as 6/12/23
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2023.06.04 03:03 RLsNoble Marissa Tully, Scion of House Tully
: #Augie0443 Character Name and House
: Marissa Tully Age
: 19 Appearance
: Marissa Tully
is a woman of chestnut brown hair - she stands at around five feet, eight inches. Marissa is a lady of fair skin and with a slightly rectangular build. She will often be found wearing heavy clothing and enjoys hats - her favorite amongst which is a feathered brownish and black hat. She also shares the trait of blue eyes with the rest of her family. Gift
: Thrifty Skill (s)
: Architect (E), Underhanded (E), Medic. Talents
: Dancing, weaving, and broidery. Starting Titles
: N/A Starting Location
: King's Landing Alternate Characters
: Crispian Celtigar Biography
Marissa Tully was born in 189 AC to Roger and Kyra Tully - she's the younger sister of Roslin Tully, the more subterfuge oriented sibling of the two. In contrast to Roslin Tully - Marissa has always been an open, energetic spirit. She's quick to make friends and will undoubtedly endeavor herself with anyone who might listen to her comments. Yet Marissa also grew up to be a distant figure - one who could pass through many groups and cliques yet never find a home in one.
From an early age, Marissa has spent the near majority of her life at Riverrun. Perhaps being a cousin might grant her more freedom - but it also limited her prospects for wardship. Noble families will happily take blood from the great houses for wardship - but the keenness diminishes the farther that blood is from the main line.
Nonetheless, Riverrun has been able to offer her a substantial education as a lady of her status demands. As tradition does not call for martial or commanding women - Marissa was instead taught the arts, flute playing and most importantly - economics.
Much of her late teens and early adulthood has been spent studying matters of coin and medicine. This was done with an awareness from Marissa herself that her fortunes in adult life depended on the usefulness she possessed and will possess for her family. At the age of nine and ten, Marissa Tully is a young lady - educated in many matters outside of the art of knighthood and war - but she still lacks something to center her focus. She's like a wandering fish - in need of guidance. Timeline
-- AC – Discord Name
- 189 AC: Marissa Tully is born to Roger and Kyra Tully
- 194 AC: Marissa Tully begins her education at Riverrun. Much of her focus is ultimately directed to learning courtly traits - such as the dancing, weaving and embroidery she's so proud of and often shows off.
- 199 AC: A second, more focused stage of her education begins. She's shown how to save coin and make coin - mainly by being taught merchant skills and the art of economics. This is an education which will take up much of her later half of life until the present. In a way, it is a little project by House Tully - much like Roslin has become a rumored spy mistress, so too must Marissa show her use in the realm of economics.
- 208 AC: The Tully family sets off for King's Landing. Marissa Tully is amongst those present - with her education at an end, her life now hangs on an edge. She must provide her use to the family - or risk the embarrassment of being a worthless weight on Riverrun. An ending she desires to avoid at all costs.
: Garibald Goodbrock Age
: 23 Appearance
: Garibald Goodbrock
stands at six feet exactly in height. He holds a mix of ginger hair and a firm, somewhat muscular build. Much like his sworn lady, he's a man of fair skin - but unlike his lady, he fancies lighter clothing. Furthermore, unlike her, he carries and wears lighter clothing. Gift
: Leadership Skill (s)
: Fortifier, Shields, and Knightly. Talents
: Dancing and quill making. Starting Titles
: N/A Starting Location
: King's Landing
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2023.06.04 02:40 majoleine 29 [TM4R] Maryland/online/anywhere -- Looking for my person
You know, was always upset that Christina Yang and Meredith Grey had each other as their person, but not me.
Hey there, my name is Wesley, 29 year old turning 30 in August. I recently got out of a 2 year relationship that had been loveless for a while, and realized I just wasn't with someone that was ultimately right for me. I'm ready to try and find someone that could be the one, but limiting myself to just my state...let alone country...seems a tad silly. So to be honest, I'm open to anyone anywhere, and have recently realized I DO like women just as much as men. I know it's a long shot finding a cis woman or man who also loves people like me, but I figure there has to be some out there. Reddit is full of them, after all.
The obvious elephant in the room is that I'm a trans man. I own my own house, so either you'd have to be willing to move to me, or for some crazy reason, I'm willing to start over for you, I'd be going to you. With that said, after reading all of what I bring to the table in terms of hobbies, values, and what I want, look at where you reside if the latter could appeal to you. If you live in a red state, I'm not interested. If you live in a country that is transphobic, I'm not interested.
I am more than willing to move to another area of the country...even another area of the world (would even be ideal, I want the FUCK out of the USA!
)...but not to one that wants me unalive. I am quite privileged that I do pass and am 100% stealth based on my height and how I look AND that me being trans is quite possibly the least interesting and important thing to me, but my health care matters. I, as a person, have the right to exist. The media likes to spin that we all are psychotic, mentally ill weirdos but I often forget about my gender. I have shit to do and it doesn't matter much to me.That being said, let's move on to me outside of that. Things in bold are NON NEGOTIABLE.
- First and foremost, I'm a hopeless romantic. My partner is a priority to me, as long as they can compromise. If you feel passionate and love easily, that's key. I want marriage one day in the far future but also want to be child free. I am monogamous & not willing to do an open relationship either.
- I'm a fiercely responsible and rather independent person. I clean after myself, schedule things that need to be done, and many of my friends can attest that I am one of the hardest workers they know. You have to be able to cook, clean, and look after yourself
. But also, have a job or be in school to further a career
. I do not enjoy having a bum as a partner who sits home and smokes all day or plays video games all day and doesn't contribute to the partnership. - Humor is so important. I can't fucking stand people who don't know how to carry a conversation. I often write paragraphs, and if you give me one word responses
, see you later! I MEAN IT! BE A TALKER! Some of my best friends are multiple texters and paragraph senders.
- I love to cook, and can to a near professional culinary level. Culinary school wasn't for me, but I still have a profound love of food that spans many different cultures, especially Mediterranean, Baltic, southeast and eastern Asian cuisines. - I love your standard fare hobbies: video games, anime, horror movies, hiking. But I have an immense yearn for travel (if not just for the food alone.), love to knit, love to thrift and antique hunt. I love taxidermy and collect it. I love medicine (as I work in healthcare). The goth/witchy/dark academia aesthetic is one I follow probably the closest. - I love a guy that is taller than me (I'm 5'10"), hairy, and I do love a bear. I love women who are shorter than me. Tattoos and piercings are sexy to me, as I have many. Would be nice to find anyone that's older than me. Hard stop under anyone age 25.
- Sorry, you gotta like cats, I'm a cat person and I have one one.
I don't hate dogs but I would not be opposed to never owning one ever again. - Rapid fire other factoids: Pescatarian, left wing, jewish (emphasis on the 'ish' LOL), hard of hearing in one ear, born Florida man (I'm so sorry.)
Feel free to send me a chat/message here and maybe we can move to discord! DO NOT GHOST! IT'S SO INCREDIBLY RUDE. JUST MESSAGE ME IF YOU WANT TO STOP SO I CAN MOVE ON. Hope to hear from y'all!
Pictures of me: Full body Face, with more hair.
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2023.06.04 00:37 IrreliventPerogi The Fête - A First-Time Reader's Experience, Thoughts, and Theories
"Now," he whispered, "I deliver death."
That is where I broke, the preceding battle, culminating in this cliffhanger, wore me down. I am a binger by heart and habit, and despite spending the last year or so practicing portion control (of all kinds) dutifully reading slowly, able to experience multiple works and to read them more deeply for the pacing, I decided to indulge this once. IDK If I'll do so again, but for just this once, follow this first-timer's unjaded eyes through their breathless, awe-stricken, confused sprint across the last ninety pages of this book. Without further ado...
Epigraph An excerpt from Faces of Darujhistan written by Maskral Jemre. The gods of Darujhistan and their faces will play extensive roles symbolically throughout the impending climax. It briefly describes the ceremonies we'll see in passing through various characters, and there's something haunting about receiving a glimpse of how the festivities ought to go and what it is that they mean.
Also, if this is the passing of winter to spring, where is Gennebakis, exactly? If the top of the continent is tundra, then Darujhistan would be much further south, (which we know) so somewhere similar to North America? Is Darujhistan in Texas?
Chapter 20 The chapter that broke me, one near unbearable buildup of pressure before the dam breaks. Here, it all begins to unfold.
Epigraph An excerpt of T'Matha's Children by Heboric. It mentions the "the matron's//blood like ice" This feels like an allusion to the goddess of Darkness, with the Tiste Andii being cold, and all. Beyond that, it "brought light into dark and dark into light" so given the alleged history between Light and Dark, that works. Was this perhaps the creation of the Warren of Shadow? In which case, the "children of chaos" would be... the Hounds? Who knows!
The Chapter Itself Murillio is off to confront Kruppe, musing on the turning of the Cycle of the Age. The Year of the Five Tusks, which we've been constantly reminded it is, is now giving way to the Year of the Moon's Tears. The names bear significance according to the Seers, with the god Tennerock's tusks, Hate, Love, Laughter, War, and Tears, signifying the nature of the coming Years. The device was a gift by some guy named Icarium, whom Mammot believes to be of Jaghut blood. Evidently, the Jaghut were skilled in mechanical prowess and possibly gifted enough to predict a thousand years ahead. Moon's Spawn has arrived, after all.
He collides with Kruppe, who drops a series of masks. The rotund mage informs his dear friend that his other ear friend, Lady Simtal, has invited him to attend the Fête. That they've never met is ironic, but irrelevant to Magnanimous Kruppe, friend to all. This whole interaction is fantastic, with Kruppe dropping many distractions, such as his mentioning five strangers without naming the fourth, or a series of cantrips, while Murillio dodges them as best he can. He confronts Kruppe point blank about being
Lady Simtal disguised the Eel. Kruppe sighs, and modifies the courtier's memory, buying himself free reign for the night.
As Baruk waits for the Eel, he discusses attending the fête with Anomander Rake, who as elected to attend as the High Alchemist's +1. Many members of the Council and the T'orrud Cabal will be in attendance, and Rake wants an opportunity to meet/observe his allies. It'll also put him in the epicenter of the most likely place of Convergence on Genabakis. Rake learns of the new year's title, and correctly guesses Icarium's involvement, as he's evidently produced similar wheels elsewhere. This has quite a few implications, given that this person is evidently traveling with at least one god. They receive news that the Eel will reveal himself to them that night, (although Baruk as much as gives away that he's guessed the truth) as well as Mammot's recovery. The High Preist of D'Riss was able to get away with minimal difficulty and casually mentions that he's aware of the drama surrounding the Coin Bearer. He is also a member of the T'orrud Babal. Rake, asks whether Mammot will be attending the Fête, and then leaves abruptly. If only Baruk had read further into the odd departure.
Adjunct Lorn finally arrives at Worry Gate, witnessing the ritual mentioned in the Book's opening epigraph and being briefly noted by a guard. That guard is Circle Breaker, watching for the Adjunct for the Eel. Once done, he manages to trade a shift to be at the Fête himself. Interestingly, he tells the guard next to him his name, which we do not ever get to know (at least not in GotM)
Lorn enters a bar, and stumbles upon the Bridgeburners. Fiddler is running one of his games, which we get to see more fully here. The game is played with a Deck and depicts the scene in the Gadrobi Hills where Paran met Rake. Tattersail did believe the Sapper to be a Tallent, after all. The game ends predicting Lorn's death, this reading is affirmed by the orb. Whiskeyjack arrives and catches up Lorn with a modified version of events, including their loss of Sorry. Lorn comes to the realization that this man had debated tactics with Dassem Ultor, so there's not much she can do to break him. She asks the name of the estate and announces she will return in two hours, without dropping anything off.
Crokus and Apsalar watch the revelry escalate down below them. They discuss their plans for the evening, the thief growing ever more conflicted about his feelings. Apsalar mentions something within her holding her sanity together. It seems Rigga remains at work. Serrat, meanwhile, creeps up the steps below, comically over-warded and utilizing an abundance of caution. She's immediately thwarted by a mysterious someone, threatening with enough force on behalf of "the Prince" to drop the hunt against the Coin Bearer, with a comical pop, she disappears.
In an age of wind and barren stone, a Jaghut and his mother wander the land, scattered as all their people, thwarting the potential of collected power. A self-imposed Babel, of sorts. The child, young by Jaghut standards, grows observing the powers of the winds shape and mould the earth to their liking. He takes after this, destroying his horrified mother in the process. He starts with lone Jaghut, but they resist or else escape him, brief satisfaction, but not enough. He takes to subjugating the beasts, the winds, the earth, the plants. The earth resists and bucks the subversion of its evolved order, yet not without the death of countless species. Then he meets the Imass, thinking creatures like the Jaghut, yet comically short-lived. These he can use, confounding them in cycles of invention, war, loss, discovery, rediscovery, rediscovery, rediscovery. They invent for themselves a god at the head of all things, and he fancies it to be himself, they discover tyranny of all forms for themselves, and he laughs. A True First Empire, a gathering of minds subjugated under an unbreakable bond. Tool's history proves backward. Then come the Jaghut, unified under a force so great that it tears through even this great Tyrant like paper, and Raest was subjugated, killed, and depowered. A barrow erected, a hemisphere frozen over for good measure. In the intervening years, the T'Lan Imass gather power of their own and wage genocide against the very Titans who were their salvation. Two enter the barrow, the threadbare mind of the once-god coalesces, he is freed, his Finnest stolen. With a concussive force, Raest, the First Emperor of Man, Jaghut Tyrant, steps into a new world.
High above, the Crone watches him emerge as four Black Soultaken Dragons and the Red Dragon Silanah, fly in to stop the monster. We get some old language of some sort, possibly Jaghut? "Dragnipurake" is of course the name of the Sword plus the suffix -Rake, "Draconiaes" seems to refer to, well, dragons, "t'na" is a conjunction of some sort? And finally, Eleint, which is whatever the Dramatis Personae names Silanah. Crone flies high, ready to watch the show unfold.
Raest emerges, and casually injures Burn on his way out, nuking a range of hills in the process. He considers waking her as well. This is a walking apocalyptic event, and our dear Anomander opted to join a party. He notices the dragons, and Holy Moly the fight that ensues is great. I'd mention highlights but that'd just be a beat-by-beat. He offers the Soletaken Tiste Andii to join him, but they refuse. Also of note, he calls Silanah a "Tiem." He rebuffs their initial assault and, telekinetically holding his body together, prepares to deliver death.
Chapter 21 A Chapter in two halves, beginning with our principal cast all filling into their positions for the climax, making last-minute pivots and discoveries. It ends with the fulfillment of the revenge plot against Lady Simtal and Turban Orr, and what a fulfillment it is! If only we don't feel so hollow afterwards.
Epigraph An excerpt of Anomandris which is, interestingly enough, written by Fisher, the Rumor Born guy. Also, this is like the first bit of Anomandris we've seen since Tattersail and Calot tag-teamed a quotation in Ch. 2 (which also mentions it was written by Fisher, lol) and seems to recount the initial arrival of the dragons. First contact between the dragons and Tiste Andii? Who knows! (Actually, quite a few people probably know at this point)
The Chapter Itself Lorn buries the Finnest in the garden at Simtal's estate. She observes the bustling crowds and almost breaks down at the sight. So much life reminds her of the many cities she's infiltrated before. The recollection of humanity becomes a cacophony, no one life worth any more than the millions around them. The Adjunct breaks at this, and Lorn has to will herself to don the persona again, with Sorry out of the picture, only the Coin Bearer remains. With her last chance to bail out behind her, the Adjunct begins moving towards her failure and death, foretold with certainty by the unwitting Tallent of Fiddler.
Meanwhile, in the Phoenix Inn, the Eel contemplates his next moves, whilst failing to button his coat. He decides that it is time for Circle Breaker to retire, for his own safety. He suspects that someone other than himself has been protecting the Coin Bearer, while the path to ultimate safety for the boy remains elusive. Most concerningly, the patterns in his head end tonight, the outcome of this Convergence is undecided.
Crokus and Apsalar, meanwhile, leave the Temple for the Fête. To the northeast, a "storm" of low rumbling thunder and ochre clouds builds and grows ever closer. As the thief is led down from the tower by Aps, he has another internal crisis. He really doesn't know Challice, and Apsalar's constant ease within his presence is confounding. Dude, she literally took a name axiomatically aligned with your life, take a hint.
The Captain of Simtal's guards berates the Bridgeburnurs for not all being Barghast, but agrees to pay them anyways. He stations them near the garden, as it's recently gotten a bit overgrown, and instructs them to steer the crowds away. Quick Ben and Mallet update Whiskeyjack on the encroaching Tyrant, and they agree to play things by ear if the monster gets any nearer.
Kalam and Paran leave the Phoenix Inn, not after the assassin makes a major threat to Scurve to, by any means necessary contact the city's Master of Assasins with their offer. They leave to find the Adjunct and put her to rest. Kalam takes note of the Greyfaces and begins to be bothered by their movements, for some reason.
Baruk arrives with Rake at the Fête. Despite the encroaching threat, the Tiste Andii seems unbothered, relaxed even. Turban Orr watches the two arrive with Lady Simtal. The Alchemist's mask is barely sufficient. Both a denial and an admission of secret power, depending on the viewer. Rake's mask is of a smug black and silver dragon. I've said it before and I'll say it again, Anomander Rake is That Guy. Still love him, though. The Councilman introduces himself and is introduced in turn to Lord Anomander Rake. The scene plays out humorously, with Orr unaware of how wildly out of his league he is, but does contain one odd detail. Rake, despite running Moon's Spawn, considers his title to be honorary, given by his people. Murillio and Rallick, begrudgingly aware of Kruppe's perfect mask choices, watch the High Alchemist and the Councilman converse, then nearly have an aneurysm over Kruppe (whom they were just praising) and his shenanigans. Kruppe, wearing the mask of a cherub slightly less innocent than himself (although not nearly so clever) bumbles his way toward Baruk and Rake, the latter of whom displays incredulity over this possibly being the Eel. Wise and discerning Kruppe the First notes Rake's nature as an inhuman Lord from high above, and a dragon. Of course, this is all a misunderstanding, and he apologizes, betrays himself as an eel of sorts, and leaves to inspect the kitchen.
Turban Orr, meanwhile, finds himself unable to enjoy the party. The last two weeks have exhausted him, all his plans confounded, and his spy still unfound. He, at last, discovers Circle Breaker, in a chance passing, but is intercepted by a man in a Trake mask. The man practically insists on insulting the Councilman, and Orr, his temper ratcheted up by the past several days, decides to indulge his wrath on this peon. Orr calls for a duel, politically selecting Councilman D'Arle as his second. Meanwhile, Murillio draws deep on his well of suave and seduces Simtal in record time. The duel will go uninterrupted. Down by the terrace, Baruk contemplates interceeding, but declines. Curiously, he considers Rallick his closest friend, explaining the Otataral gift, but it is a shame we never go to see the two interact, there's a story there. Rake offers to be RN's second, and my hype has hit yet another threshold. Here is where I leave my desk for a mandated break, I'm not the sort of person who eats and reads, so I'm mentally cussing the entire way there and back. Baruk meets Mammot on his way to the duel and notes the scholar's accurate Jaghut mask; although Mammot recognizes minute flaws in the design, Baruk thinks nothing of this. Stranger still, despite Oppon's luck drawing Crokus to the party, it is also keeping him away from his uncle.
The Bridgeburners watch everyone filter out into the courtyard by the garden, watching the preparations for the duel. Though they notice Rake, this doesn't amount to much. Quick Ben updates the group on their timetable with the Tyrant, and they make preparations to blast the estate then the city.
Crokus finds Challice; without a method of reaching her at the moment he is distracted by the duel. Kruppe, finds the boy and nabs him while passing a note off to Circle Breaker. The note grants Circle Breaker the right to retire, as well as land and a title in the city of Dhavran (the map shows this to be along the western bank of Lake Azur) as thanks for being the Eel's most trusted servant. The circle is mended (whatever that means, there seems to be a story there) and he can at last rest. Despite everything going down in this and subsequent chapters, this storyline had me by far the most hyped. Good job man, you've earned it.
Baruk offers to referee, and the participants take their places. Turban Orr's grandstanding, and the seconds' lack of comments each take as much time as the fight itself. As everyone notes, this is not a duel, but a public murder. That Anomander Rake decides to get publicly entangled in the proceedings not to comment or contribute at all, but just to watch this fool get merc'd, strikes me as darkly funny. Orr is dead and as Rallick quietly gloats to the corpse, the scandal is broached, and the hostess is nowhere to be found. A large woman in a green dress approaches Baruk and Rake, introduced as the Witch Derudan, another member of the Cabal. Also, she has a personal servant to carry a hookah with her at all times. They leave Rake's presence to discuss some matters.
Simtal, meanwhile, finally arrises from her 30 minutes with Murillio, becoming aware of some great disturbance downstairs. She begins dressing and is interrupted by Rallick Nom entering the room. Rallick stays only long enough to convey his purpose and her situation. It is Murillio who stays a moment to watch the woman process what has become of her. Years of machinations and backroom (or perhaps, bedroom) deals all hinging on the continued support of those around her. With no one, the vultures and enemies she's made will come, likely they've already begun. Murillio leaves a dagger and grants her the privacy to escape the coming storm.
Lady Simtal, you deserved this but that doesn't make what was done to you right. What business does justice have with cruelty? Swearing by the Lady of Beggers, Murillio comes to the crashing realization of what this night has cost his soul. Coll is reinstated, yes, but at incalculable cost to his dearest friends.
Crokus, meanwhile, finally gets the opportunity to peel away from Kruppe and approach Challice, after getting the girls attention, she runs over to him, overjoyed to finally have a moment alone with...Gorlas. Panicking, Crokus does the sane thing and kidnaps her, because that'll make this run smoother, y'kow?
At the first opportunity, Circle Breaker sneaks out of the estate and into the night a free man. Passing a food-comatose Kruppe, he leaves smiling, awed by his own escape.
Chapter 22 A major action climax for a few plotlines, with a resolution I've vacillated between sour and sweet on, currently resting at sweet as I've processed things.
Epigraph A poem titled Ravens by Collitt. Acknowledging the Great Ravens as a sign of disaster, the poet fears and reveres them. Politically, this is one of my favorites thus far. Also, I love the connection between the Great Ravens and, well, normal ravens. Ravens are carrion feeders, who gather at signs of battle. Sapient Great Ravens gather at the signs of great events and cataclysmic battles, searching for "interesting" events. That's just a really fun connection.
The Chapter Itself Two of the Soultaken driven from battle, Raest prepares for his final thrust. The Gadrobi Hills are devastated, sundered by his travels and battle. He's killed a few odd creatures along his path as well, who we recognize as the garrison that helped Coll and Paran, as well as Councilman Orr's messenger to Pale. Cresting a hill, he is briefly in awe of Darujhistan, then offers Silanah one last opportunity to retreat. She makes no reply, nor is she even prepared for battle. Raest steps forward, away from Genebakis and into another time, within the dreams of a great, pudgy mage.
Despite his best attempts, Raest can do nothing to kill the creature, introducing itself as Kruppe. He informs the Tyrant that he bows to no one, Tyrant or god; in the face of such indifference, there is nothing Raest can do. Beset by a T'lan Imass from behind; despite his best efforts, Onos T'oolan cannot be bound by the Jaghut, as our dear Tool is called by an ancient call of a Bonecaster, Pran Chole's. Befuddled by such impotence on his part, Raest is befuddled further still by the appearance of another interloper, K'Rul. He initially mistakes him for Hood (which greatly alters my estimation of the god's lifespan) although he only refers to him as the Death Wanderer, as opposed to the god of Death. K'Rul warns Raest of the arrival of Anomander Rake and the new form of death he brings with him. Raest scoffs at this initially, but K'Rul makes a fascinating revelation. The flow of power between the gods and mortals has shifted, though of it the mortals are ignorant. I suppose when you have mages mastering domains and relics capable of drawing the gods who wield them, it makes sense. Anything less than omnipotence can be overmastered. K'Rul also repeats his Maker of Paths title and reveals his aspect "was the Obelisk." So he's Burn's predecessor and not Hood's. Given Burn's Sleep began nearly 1200 years ago, that gives us a roughly 800-year window for the shift, given Darujhistan's founding, whatever Crokus may say. This whole sequence is filled with even more magic technobable, but I'll move on. Title of Sword? Moved to the Realms of Chaos, K'Rul's birthplace? I'll figure it out eventually. With a hollow laugh, Raest collapses into dust, his spirit invading a new body.
Kalam and Paran creep into Simtal's garden, finding there a young woman, along with a curious structure. The woman turns out to be Sorry, yet not Sorry. Kalam prevents the Captain from killing her outright, instead ascertaining that she has no memory or deeply incomplete memories of her time in the Bridgeburners. Kalam's reaction to being called a friend is priceless. They observe the structure, a tree stump that is somehow growing from moment to moment, frustrating the eyes as it does. At this moment, one is reminded of the acorn and the Finnest. Paran leaves to fetch Mallet, wondering if the healer could aid the girl.
Rallick, gripped with a malaise he cannot account for, stumbles to leave the party. What if Coll doesn't take his old Lordship back? Would what he's done be justified even if he does? As a reader, I have to wonder, how much of the blame lies on Oppon, and how much on RN himself? Interrupting his musings, he stumbles across a disgruntled and awake Kruppe. The mage is worried, although trusts K'Rul's words that the world as it is now would be enough to put down Raest. The assassin leaves Kruppe behind and is approached by a woman in a featureless mask, who circuitously reveals herself to be Vorcan. She mentions Councilman Orr possessed protective magics that Rallick somehow trivialized. For that reason, she requires his services now. One last note on their conversation here, that RN was fine submitting to punishment helps show how defeated he is, now that his slavish devotion to the plan justifying his own humanity is over with. Defending someone else's humanity cannot serve as a substitute for your own, Rallick, and I feel you know this now.
Crokus, meanwhile, is totally bungling his attempts to speak with Challice. Promising not to hurt her, after a slew of threats, of course, he lets her speak. She reveals that she never betrayed him and that they'd always known the Rope was behind the guard's death. Horrified, Crokus reels from the revelation, wondering what exactly is going on. Chalice restates her love for Gorlas (or more tellingly, his station and his love for her) and her desire to have nothing to do with Younghand's cloak-and-dagger shenanigans. She slips up at the end, patronizing him briefly, and Crokus (more than a little hypocritically) accuses her of romanticizing the dangers of the real world. They part on the worst possible terms.
Mallet, for his part, refuses to enter the garden. Recognizing the power within and its hunger, he demands Paran bring Sorry to him. She heads to the healer smilingly, and Kalam expresses regret that she hadn't smiled before. Mallet discovers Rigga's presence within the girl, torn whether to help what little remains of the Wax Witch to integrate Sorry's history into Apsalar's consciousness safely. Paran advises the healer to trust it. Rallick, Vorcan, and Crokus all enter the glade, the latter staying hidden. Paran meets them as they discuss the stump, with Vorcan asking Rallick to sit on it and dampen its growth. It's here that Rallick just outright admits to knowing the substance he'd used was Otataral dust, rendering my whole Eureka moment a bit... moot. Also, Rallick knew what it was the whole time?! Why play coy with something you'll eventually give to us outright, Erikson? It's either a mystery or not. There have been a handful of moments like this, where a mystery will be teased and then casually solved. It - I - uh, whatever I guess. That's only the second most infuriating reveal in this chapter anyway.
Kalam offers Vorcan 900k golden
doubloons jakatas and a High Fist position to kill off the T'orrud Cabal. Paran assures her that Malazan can scare off the Son of Darkness, having done so twice before. Vorcan personally accepts the contract and after charging Rallick with sitting on the stump until a better solution can be reached, leaves to prepare for the grim task. After everyone leaves, Rallick invites Crokus out of the glade and charges the boy with warning Mammot and Baruk of their impending danger. At that moment, something occurs outside of the garden, and the stump grows past Rallick's ability to contain it.
Sensing the disturbance at the Fête, Baruk laments leaving so early. Rake assures him the situation is under control, but stops himself from revealing one other piece of information, his eyes betraying a quiet sadness. He then offers to help clear the streets for something else coming, using Dragnipur to clear a passage to K'Rul's Belfry after warning Baruk of Malazan's impending assassination attempt.
At the Fête, Raest arives. Subsuming the mind of Mammot, whom he'd imprinted upon while waking, he launches an assault upon the partygoers. Quick Ben manages to save Derudan in the initial volley, which tears through the estate in a series of propagating bolts of power. Whiskeyjack's leg is crushed under a pillar, down for the count, and Captain Paran appears to be instantly vaporized in the initial assault. Derudan and QB launch twin assaults on Raest, quickly draining the Witch.
Here we have what is likely the most vexing scene in the entire book. Or, perhaps, the start of several compoundingly vexing scenes. Paran drops into what seems to be yet another warren, a swamp of sorts, within which a T'lan Imass (likely Tool) and a wooden approximation of a Jaghut fight. Behind the Captain, a house grows out of the swamp. The Imass warns Paran that something called an Azath is not yet ready to contain the animate Finnest. Paran resolves to hold the Finnest until the Azath is made ready. Launching a blast against Paran's very soul, the Finnest circumvents even Chance, or perhaps the blade has at last betrayed him. The Finnest demands total submission, but Paran refuses. Within him, the... Blood of a Hound? wells up, refusing to be subdued. Did the souls of the Hounds follow Paran back out of Dragnipur? That was roughly when Paran's whole "no one's gonna control me" arc began in full. Anyway,
Perrin Paran throws himself against the Finnest, tearing into it with fists, claws, and teeth, holding it down until he is shaken out of his blood fury. The Azath is finished and draws the Finnest below the mud. Paran is shunted out of the Warren into the material plane.
Noting Paran's return, Quick Ben assaults the Tyrant with everything he has, opening SEVEN Warrens within himself. A feat that is later noted to be theoretically impossible. He burns through the monster, reducing it to an animate, humanoid totem of ash. Raest retaliates, forcibly closing QB's Warrens one after another. QB is about to give up, before noticing Hedge, off to the side, a pyromanic grin on his face, Ben dives, covering Derudan and his ears. The sapper fires, blasting Mammot's body to smithereens. Paran runs off to inform WJ as QB notices something coalescing in the bottom of Hedge's crater.
It is then that the Azath drags the remaining spirit of Raest kicking and screaming into the garden. So, it turns out Azaths are a known force in this world, but I'll get to that later. I will note its appearance is a surprise to everybody. Was it the acorn? But if the Jaghut could seal the Finnest in an Azath, why not just go all the way? Many questions and few answers. Derudan leaves, and Fiddler and Hedge are sent off to blast the city. Kalam then finally realizes the potential danger of not only blowing up the City of Blue Fire, but of doing so at major infrastructure hubs. Took y'all long enough.
Chapter 23 A resolution to all but one of our action climaxes, and a final unveiling of several long-standing plans. We're solidly in the endgame now, and somehow only speeding up.
Epigraph After a long hiatus, we receive another excerpt of Call to Shadow, this one seemingly referring to Simtal's suicide. Given that the author is apparently Paran's sister, the nature of the work is becoming clearer, this is a recounting of the events here in Darujhistan. I'm a bit unclear as to why its specifically attributed to Shadow, aside from Shadow's interference being the inciting incident to all this mess. Perhaps that's sufficient, however. What we can tell from this is that Paran eventually meets with Fellisin again, despite his status as a traitor. So while we can't tell whether or not this will all have a happy ending, we can tell the Paran siblings will make it that far at least.
The Chapter Itself Paran, running through the undergrowth, is drawn into yet another Warren, ambushed by Rood. After nearly tearing the Captain apart, the Hound relents, confused by a sense of kinship. Cotilion appears, complaining that the Captain should interfere with House Shadows, especially given his growing enmity with the Empress. Even still, Cotillion will try again, correcting for the flaws of the initial plan. He considers his treatment of Sorry merciful, insofar as the necessary evil could be. Paran offers Cotillian Chance, seeing as how his luck has finally turned, and the Rope accepts with the intent to strike back at the Twins. Paran wakes back in the garden and leaves to find the Adjunct.
So, what was Oppon's plan for the captain? His use of Chance infuriated Hairlock and the Hounds, drawing the two together, and evidently claiming the Hounds' souls/blood in the process. Thus, Paran was able to resist the Finnest and buy the Azath time. The only issue was that is the Brother's actions in Dragnipur seemed to be surprised by the whole episode. An act? Beyond that, Paran also played half the role in freeing Sorry, thwarting Shadow's aims at Empire. j
Crokus, traumatized by the sight of Mammot possessed, burned, blown to bits, and claimed by the roots of the Azath, runs to find Baruks home. He (and the audience) can only hope that Mammot himself was released to death before the Azath took the possessed body. Running through the streets of Darujhistan, he finally comes to realize why they've emptied so. Rake has moved Moon's Spawn directly overhead, looming as if to crush the city at any moment.
The Adjunct tails the Coin Bearer, sensing the Jaghut Tyrant's death. Assuming Rake's involvement in the defeat, she releases Tayscheren's Ace in the Hole. A Lord of the Gaylen demons, powerful enough to challenge an ascendant, the intended follow-up in the one-two punch which would finish off Rake or Raest, whoever survived their clash. The Adjunct then tails the Coin Bearer further, considering the woman Lorn dead for good. She does not even consider the Adjunct human, but a tool. Lost entirely in her own justification, the Adjunct carries on.
Baruk mourns Mammot in his study. He's deduced too late that Rake knew all along, choosing to shield Baruk from the anticipation of his possessed friend's impending death. The Witch Derudan arrives, prepared to mourn with him, as an act of love. She informs Baruk of the extraordinary circumstances surrounding Mammot's death, as well as the conjuration of an Azath in Darujhistan. The specific use of the word conjuration implies something caused its appearance, though if not the acorn, I couldn't guess what. They feel the release of the demon lord, as well as two more of the Cabal members at the hand of Vorcan.
Anomander Rake, atop the belfry of K'Rul's temple. Silahnah arrives, but Rake asks she leave, she's done enough for today. K'Rul himself arrives, and the two speak of their misplaced wandering within this world. Rake knows no other life than wandering from battle to battle, yet it does not fulfill him. The elder god, having failed to receive the advice he craves, leaves the Lord to his battle. Rake watches as the Galen arises, and begins changing form. Rake then shapeshifts, rising higher, higher, higher above the city into a Silvermaned Black Dragon, more massive even than Silanah, and dives towards his ignorant prey.
The Adjunct formerly known as Lorn moves to kill the Coin Bearer at last. She's interrupted by, of all people, a member of the Crimson Guard.* Fingers, Sixth Blade of the Crimson Guard, grabs Crokus and escorts him to Baruk's place personally. During their discussion, Crokus at long last learns of his nature as the Coin Bearer, and is advised to lose the item as soon as his luck runs out. It is the CG who have been protecting the boy. After breaking away from Blues, a gravely injured Adjunct runs into Meese and Iralta, who finish her off.
* Upon review, Caladan Brood does commit some Crimson Guard members to protect the Coin Bearrer in Ch. 10 debriefing with Crone, just a bit circumlocutiously. He even names the sixth blade, and Kallor immediately takes it to mean they're interfering with Rake.
Paran comes across the Adjunct, injured beyond saving, or at least, dying faster than a healer can be acquired. She laments her ironic, inglorious death, and barely has time to marvel over Paran's return from the dead. The two share a moment of cold sympathy before her end. Paran claims the Otataral blade for himself. The Twins appear before him, begging for protection from Shadowthrone. Paran tells them off, and quietly picks up the Adjunct, returning to the Phoenix Inn.
Chapter 24 The breathless end of it all, flowing almost immediately into subsequent adventures. Anything I'm not fully satisfied with is at least spoken to, promising further resolution or explanation later.
Epigraph An excerpt of a poem titled Azath by Adaephon. Written as if narrated by the titular entity, the poem speaks a bit about their purpose. Both a lure and a prison to the power-crazed, an endless prison in a world where death is trivialized to the powerful. It is interesting how much of a known entity these are, despite us not hearing about them until well after its arrival, and that no one (outside of possibly Rake) considered the Convergence would produce one. Ah, well.
The Chapter Itself Crokus cannot enter Baruk's compound, being frustrated by the High Alchemist's wards. Fortunately, he has one last bit of luck. The Demon Lord crashes to the ground, slammed by Rake's assault from above. The crash shatters the gate and any potential wards. Both dragons shift back to their base forms, and the Galayn taunts Rake. Crokus feels someone walk up behind him, and the Lord of Moon's Spawn asks that Crokus flees. He notes that he is speaking with the Coin Bearer, but Brood's "request" and the impending fight save the lad. Rake and the Demon Lord fight, sword to axe, and while the contest isn't quite the spectacle of Raest soloing five dragons, its pretty great. We even get a bit of lore out of it. It seems indeed that some version of the story Tool told Lorn was true, Dark birthed Light, but then light was corrupted. Demons being corrupted denizens of Light is, well, exactly on brand, so that tracks. Crokus watches in horror as the Galayn Lord is subsumed into the black blade. AR then turns with exhaustion to the lad, and asks him to warn Baruk of the impending danger.
Baruk and Derudan have set up a magical barrier, but Baruk hesitates to enter it. His hesitation buys him nothing, however, as Vorcan attacks just as the ward is shattered outside. She is forced back by a Tiste Andii assassin, Serrat, who is stabbed by the Master of Assassins. Derudan is similarly stuck down, minutely to slow to take advantage of the distraction. Baruk, fleeing, runs to the door, in which is Crokus, who is able to (luckily) land two near impossible blows against Vorcan, by way of thrown bricks. She flees, and Baruk gets up, moving to save the injured. Serrat has passed, but Baruk reveals that he is able to save Darudan by curing the white paralt in her system.* They mourn Mammot, and then the young thief leaves to find Apsalar.
*Which is also just named outright as a spider, but this one annoys me far less than the Otataral thing.
I'll skip a scene breifly to maintain momentum, but it works in the chapter as is.
Rallick watches the stump, now a house, contemplating the capture he saw earlier. He is experiencing an unaccountable euphoria, believing the house to be "right, and just." Vorcan arrives, begging Rallick to protect her, before fainting. He picks her up, and with no better ideas, runs headlong into the cognitohzardous house, disappearing to we know not where. I suspect we haven't seen the last of either Rallick Nom or Vorcan, but that is the last we see of either this book. Korlat, a Tiste Andii assassin and sister to Serrat, enters the glade. She regards the Azath edielmarn or "Pillar of Innocence" and decides against the pursuit further. To continue the hunt would be to destroy the Azath, and its youthful innocence. In this, Korlat takes after the Queen of Darkness, who defended Light when it too was youthful and innocent. Oddly, in this, Korlat morally succeeds where Rallick failed. We learn that other objects such as this exist, such as the Deadhouse in Malaz city, where Kellanved and Dancer evidently walked through its... Gates. So we know people can leave these things, giving some hope for Rallick an Vorcan's return. Also, considering the heights to which the two Ascended after entering, first through Empire then godhood, R and V may have a long road ahead of them. Who knows? as my cheaky pun earlier hinted, I'm aware of the next book's title, so we may be seeing them soon.
Back at the Phoenix Inn, Whiskeyjack contacts Dujek to update him as to the nights proceedings. Tayscheren is in a coma after what happened to the Galayn Lord, and WJ states that they'll not be taking the city, for fear of detonating the natural gas caverns beneath. This is of course, a problem. The what's left of the 2nd is loosing Pale, Caladan Brood has marched south as Dujek guessed, and brought two other armies besides with him, beyond this, Laseen has outlawed Dujek himself, as Seven Cities is to close to rebellion for him to be useful in saving it in time. The Empire has now severed its last link to the Old Guard as a result.
The Black Moranth stand with Onearm, and will pick up the Bridgeburners once they're out of the city. WJ is made Dujek's second, and Paran is placed in charge of the BBs. Hopefuly, Brood knows enough about the Pannion Seer to accept Dujek's force's continued existence. Though they're free to walk, all of WJ's squad resolves to stay with the rebels, with two slight exeptions. Kalam and Fiddler have decided to leave with Apsalar, whom they're taking home; they commit to return once that is over with. WJ notices Coll is awake, but the Lord only offers them passage out of the city in gratefulness.
The main text of the novel ends with Kruppe, Murillio, and Crokus walking towards the Phoenix Inn. Kruppe assuages Crokus's worries by reassuring him that he knows Apsalar's location, and shrugs off concerns over Rallick, speaking more to the man's likely safety. We find out Challice was saved by Gorlas, tying off that loose end, and begins to regale them with the tale of how Darujistan was saved and Coll was reinstated, with his heroic aid, of course.
Book 7: The Fête An excellent climax all around, pulling out every stop. While the initial experience was a bit jarring, with all the revelations, I am satisfied as I've let it sit. On the whole, I probably prefer a slower reading pace, but once I committed to finishing the whole thing, I was fine riding it out.
I'm straining against Reddit's 40k charachter limit, so I'll give my thoughts on the Epilogue, a deeper dive into the side materials, as well as thoughts on the novel as a whole soon.
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2023.06.03 23:32 sjanevardsson Damned Bureaucracy
The small cargo ship, in the default medium grey, was wholly unremarkable. The same and similar made up the fleets of corporate and private couriers, with the result that it was not surprising to see it anywhere.
The anonymity and ability to blend in served Sidra well…usually. This station, run by the hyper-bureaucratic aslodzhins was the exception. The “bugs,” as many humans called them, had their own ways of doing things and didn’t like a “squishy,” as they called humans and other endoskeletal beings in their own language, upsetting the order.
“Private vessel Hobby Horse, please state the purpose of your visit and expected duration.”
“Station 47 control, I say again: PV Hobby Horse requesting permission to dock in an out-of-the-way small cargo dock for fueling. Expected visit duration no more than a week…seven standard days, but no less than an hour.”
“PV Hobby Horse, docking for fuel cleared at Lock 7-16. All passengers and crew are required to wait inside the vehicle until security arrives to clear you. …Cracked-shell squishy thinks they can
—” The controller’s voice cut out as they must have noticed they were still transmitting.
“Thank you, station 47 control. Docking at Lock 7-16. Squishy out….”
Sidra expected one or two security to show up to clear her to enter the station, instead, there were a dozen. She opened the airlock and waited inside. “Come on in.”
The leader, obvious by the shiny, silver emblem in the center of its blast armor, stepped in, followed by two others that made a quick inspection of the ship to verify the claim of no other persons aboard. The brown color of the leader’s head carapace marked them as a drone, while the black carapaces were male and bright blue were female.
Sidra extended a hand. “Sidra Boston; captain, owner, pilot, and sole crew of the Hobby Horse. Welcome to my home.”
“Sub-adjutant-lieutenant-detachment-commander Slivdzak.” The officer looked at her extended hand and grasped it with one their six manipulators.
“Pleasure to meet you, Slivdzak. How can I help?” Sidra felt a secret rush of joy at the way the officer tried and failed to hide their discomfort. She knew that the lack of carapace was as disconcerting to them as the feel of a surprise tarantula crawling on the neck was to humans.
“Captain Sidra Boston—”
“Please, just call me Sid. Drop all the Captain and Boston stuff.”
“Sid, you have not made clear the purpose of your ‘one-hour to seven-day’ stay. Please elaborate.”
“I’m meeting someone here and taking them home.”
The officer looked at a small device it carried. A hologram rose from it, her close-cropped black hair, medium-brown skin, large, green eyes, and humped nose obvious. Beneath the hologram was writing in the bugs’ script. “Are you not a hunter of bounties?”
“Well, if that’s what you want to call it, I guess.”
“Such activity is only allowed in teams of three or more by aslodzhin law 9314-27.664 and safety regulations 647-88.932 and 90991-17.0. In addition, at least one of the team must be aslodzhin.”
“That’s kind of speciesist, isn’t it?”
“The courts have allowed for permanent residents of aslodzhin space to fill the requirements where applicable, in accordance with Galactic Union Resolution on the Rights of Sapients, 74.23.08 Paragraph 12.”
“Great, good to hear. Problem is, I work alone and I’m not after a bug.” She shrugged. “You know how we squishies are.”
“Station command has already decreed that you are not to leave your vessel without the two members chosen for you.” The officer raised to its full height, its head carapace close to scraping the ceiling. “Your team will be here soon. Good day, Captain Sidra Boston.”
“Good day, sub-whatever-whatchamacallit Sliv.”
After the security detail left, she stepped out of the ship to check on the refueling. No sooner had her foot set down outside the airlock than she found herself in the crosshairs of two armed security guards that had been standing out of sight.
“They aren’t kidding about not leaving without a team, huh? Damned bureaucracy.” She stepped back inside the ship and sat on the floor to await her babysitters.
When her team arrived, she was surprised by the presence of the furred, six-limbed hikarin hemi-male. He was easily head and shoulders taller than her, but slight of build, and thin-boned, coming from a lower-gravity world.
The aslodzhin female didn’t surprise her, even in her law enforcement uniform. She wore a red symbol on the chest of her uniform.
Sidra stood. “Okay guys, I’m Sid, and this is my
job. You do what I say and stay out of the way we’ll get along fine. You,” she said, pointing at the aslodzhin female, “change out of that uniform. You’ll scare off my skip.”
“Sid, it’s a pleasure to meet you. I’m senior-squad-chief Dliz, and this is Soolyasin.” Dliz extended a manipulator for a shake and Sidra obliged. Dliz’s compound eyes rotated in a way Sidra didn’t know they could, and she showed frank wonder at the feel of a hand in her manipulator. “Could you do that again?” she asked.
“You moved your hand, and I could feel the muscles flex…yes! That’s it!” Dliz laughed. “That’s the neatest feeling ever!”
“Am I the first squishy you’ve met?”
“Oh, no. I’ve known Sool since I was a nymph.” Dliz continued to hold on to Sidra’s hand.
“How about humans?” Sidra raised an eyebrow and tried to extricate herself from the increasingly awkward handshake.
“Yes. I mean, I’ve seen plenty passing through, but never met one.” Dliz let go and uttered a quiet apology.
Soolyasin stepped forward. He was dressed in technician’s clothes, complete with tool belt. “You’ll have to forgive Dliz. She’s a fan of bounty hunters in general, and you in particular.”
“Shush.” Dliz stood straight up at attention on her four hind legs, her head scraping the ceiling, her three left manipulators raised in a salute. “What are your orders, Sid?”
“First order of business, you need to lose the uniform and dress in something less conspicuous. Sool, is that a disguise?”
“No, these are my work clothes. When Dliz called I ran straight here.”
“That’s fine. You’ll blend in, no trouble.” Sidra put on a ballistic vest and covered it with a loose jacket. She checked that she had cuffs, shackles, bench warrant, and badge.
She turned toward Dliz. “Do you have a ballistic vest?”
“I have a carapace; I’m not a squishy.”
“Will your carapace stop a slug from a weapon like this?” Sidra held up a high-powered, 6mm rifle.
“Um, no. I have armor, though.”
“Can you wear it under clothes?”
“Yes, but it’s against the regulations.”
“Screw the rules, wear your armor…under
your clothes.” She muttered under her breath, “Damned bureaucracy.”
Sidra turned toward Soolyasin. “I think I have a vest that’ll fit you.”
He looked at Sidra, then Dliz, then back again. “Is it going to be that dangerous?”
Sidra showed them the bench warrant. Soolyasin’s eyes grew wide and Dliz’s eyes rolled in a different way to earlier. Sidra thought she might be able to read bug emotions if this kept up.
“You were going after a turgen terrorist by yourself?” he asked.
“Still am. Just don’t want to see my babysitters get hurt.” She turned to look at Dliz. “Dliz, relax. You don’t have to stand at attention. I need you to tell me which of these weapons you’ll let me carry on the station.”
Dliz settled back down onto six legs and looked over the cabinet Sidra had unlocked. In addition to the rifle, she had pistols, tasers, batons, knives, and a shotgun with less-lethal beanbag loads along with standard loads.
“Which of them are capable of breaching the station hull?”
“The 6-mil, and the shotgun, if I loaded it with steel shot or slugs instead of beanbags.” She didn’t mention that the 10mm pistols were just as likely to do the same damage, but she wasn’t going out without at least one lethal weapon.
“In that case, leave the rifle and lethal shotgun rounds behind. I’ll be carrying a beam weapon, too, so we should be covered.”
“What about me?” Soolyasin asked.
“The only thing I need you to do is stay out of the way. Unless I need some inconspicuous eyes in the bay.”
After fitting Soolyasin with a ballistic vest and Dliz getting into civilian clothes over her armor, much to her dismay, they moved to the main cargo bays where they expected their quarry to show. Sidra positioned them so that she could watch arrivals, Dliz could watch her back, and Soolyasin could stay well out of the way unless and until needed.
The first hour went by at glacial speed, with constant interruptions from Dliz and Soolyasin asking questions or pointing at every passerby that might
be a turgen in disguise. The next two hours dragged compared to the first.
It was in the middle of the fourth hour that Sidra got notice that the ship carrying her quarry was docking. She moved them to cover the lock where it pulled in, granting them a view on both the personnel airlock and the cargo airlock.
A much smaller contingent of security met the ship, cleared the crew for the station, and left. Four crewmembers, all turgen, filed off. Larger than humans in bulk, grey skin covered with hard dermal denticles, they had two arms, two legs, the remnants of a dorsal fin, and a long, flat tail with which they could do bone-breaking damage.
Sidra waited. If he was going to sneak off the ship, he’d need to do it soon. When it became apparent that he wasn’t going to get out on his own, she radioed Soolyasin.
“Okay, Sool. It’s clear around the ship. Just carry your tool case and walk onboard like you belong there. You’ve seen his picture, if you see him, run. If there’s anyone
else on the ship, just tell them you’re checking the fuel gauges because of some regulation or other.”
“Are you sure?”
“I’m sure. You got this, and I’ve got your back.”
Soolyasin walked onto the ship, and they could hear him in their headsets, “Hello? Anyone here? I need to check your fuel gauges. Hello?”
A few quiet moments passed before Soolyasin spoke up again. “There’s no one else here,” he said, “I’m co—” His voice was cut off by the sound of a heavy thud.
Sidra ran for the ship, pulling her shotgun into firing position and cycling a round into the chamber. She stopped at the door of the ship and called inside. “Give it up, Otto. The only way you’re leaving here is in cuffs.”
When she didn’t hear anything else, she moved to clear the corners. She looked right where the door to the cockpit was closed. She swiveled around to check the other side only to find it empty as well. “Dliz, move up and cover the exit. The cargo airlock hasn’t been cycled, so this is the only way off.”
She began to move down the passageway when she heard the cockpit door click behind her. She swung around a delivered a 12-gauge beanbag into Otto’s gut at near point-blank range. Rather than stopping him, it enraged him. He turned and swiped at her with his tail.
Sidra tried to dodge out the way, but he managed to knock the shotgun out of her hands. He picked it up and threw it behind himself into the cockpit, next to the limp form of Soolyasin. “Time to go away, bounty hunter.”
He began to move toward her. When he stepped in front of the open door, he was met with a concentrated beam of infrared energy that forced him to jump back. “Listen, soft-skin. You leave now, and I’ll throw your friend out. It’s your one chance to leave alive.”
She drew her 10mm pistol and pointed it at him. “And if I don’t?”
He started toward her again, then stopped when the beam almost connected. “I’ll start by killing your furry friend, then your trigger-happy friend, then you…but nice and slow. There’s no way you’re taking me to a human prison.”
Sidra couldn’t see Dliz, but from the angle of the last beam, she’d moved to where she had more coverage of the passageway toward the cockpit. She knew that if he wanted, he could ignore the burns and rush her, crushing her carapace in a thousand different ways. Her shotgun was far out of reach, not to mention ineffective, but the 10mm pistol was a comforting weight in her hand.
Otto turned his back on her, his tail swishing wildly, smashing against the bulkheads on each side of the passage. “Very well, then. On to killing your furry friend first.”
“I’m warning you, Otto, these are lethal rounds. Put your hands behind your head, your tail between your legs, and drop to your knees.”
By the time Otto had taken a step, Sidra had taken aim and fired a shot into his torso and another into his thigh. He stopped and turned to look at her, bright pink blood running down his leg and back. He laughed. “You’re going to be so much fun.”
The courts tended to look down on spinal injuries, but when a round in the torso and thigh didn’t slow him down, she didn’t feel like she had much choice. She took aim again and fired at the base of his tail. His tail dropped like a dead weight, and he cried out.
The pain dropped him to his knees. Sidra finished the motion by jumping between his shoulder blades to put him flat on the deck. She cuffed his hands behind his back, and secured his ankles with shackles before motioning Dliz to come in.
“Call for medical for Sool and for the idiot here.”
Dliz made the call and medical teams arrived in less than a minute.
“Damn,” Sidra said, “I guess bureaucracy is good for something after all.”
Soolyasin was awake by the time he was loaded onto a stretcher. There didn’t seem to be any broken bones, but he’d been thrown rather hard by Otto’s tail strike. “Sorry I wasn’t any help,” he said.
“Nonsense. I’m sorry I sent you in there and you got hurt. I’m splitting the bounty three ways, even across with both of you.”
“I can’t take any payment,” Dliz said. “It’s against the regulations for police to have any outside earnings.”
“You saved my bacon, though. If you hadn’t been enough of an inconvenience with the beam, he would’ve tail swiped me before I could draw.”
“Still can’t accept any payments or monetary gifts.”
“How about this? You two have been friends forever, right? I’ll pay your portion to Sool, and he can treat you to fancy dinners for the rest of your life.”
“Wha...how much is the bounty?”
“Three-point-seven million Terran credits. About sixteen million galactic.”
Dliz’s eyes rolled in yet another motion. “Damned bureaucracy.” Reedsy Prompt: Write about someone who has always done something as part of a group, and is now starting to set out solo, or vice versa.
Story published here.
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2023.06.03 23:26 BlueThunder37 fits perfectly onto the yellow lines
2023.06.03 22:41 Any-Ask-9714 I try to explain Mario Bosses
I don’t think most Mario bosses are that bad. I will prove to you that throughout the Mario series, there are only a few bad bosses of the majority. I will try and get you on the side of Mario bosses by explaining the mechanics of every single one. (with a bit of personal bias of course)
Super Mario Bros/Super Mario Bros: The Lost Levels:
The First Mario game’s bosses were very and I mean v e r y primitive, But I won’t fault the games or the developers, but to be fair this was one of the first games for a (fairly) Primitive console and bosses weren’t even the main focus of the game, the main focus was on the challenging platforming and level design.
Fake BowseBowser: The boss fights in this game are very simple but could be challenging if you don't have any power-ups with the boss throwing hammers and breathing fire, but all you have to do is either run under the boss when they jump or just jump over them.
Super Mario Bros 2/ Super Mario Bros U.S.A:
This game is where I’ll start getting into specific boss fights and how they work Individually.
Birdo Miniboss: The Birdo miniboss is a decent boss fight that can be quite challenging especially the later versions where some of the eggs the birdo shoots out are fireballs and you have to watch if the boss is firing the eggs or the fireballs to send them back.
Mouser: The Mouser boss fight is surprisingly fairly challenging, the fight makes you time when you’re going to grab the bombs so you don’t get blown up and time when and where you throw the bombs on Mouser’s platform so the bombs will harm him.
Tryclyde: The Tryclyde fight, (for me at least) is pure panic as the boss shoots its fireballs at you in a near-constant spew while you have to throw the mushroom blocks at the boss and make sure to dodge the fire shot at you.
Fryguy: The fight against Rryguy is also about timing as you have to dodge the raining fire from the boss in the first phase while you grab the mushroom blocks and throw them at the boss until it blows up. The second phase however can be very annoying trying to hit the Small fryguys while dodging them jumping at you.
Clawgrip: The Clawgrip fight is admittingly very slow but it can be pretty engaging to dodge the hurled rocks and send them back to the boss.
Mask Gate: The mask gate fight is probably the best in the game purely because of the sense of shock. The gates usually mark the end of the level and a moment of peace after the boss you just fought. Although the fight itself is pretty lackluster, the gate only flies around the room from side to side as you throw the mushroom blocks at the boss, the only challenge being dodging the boss when you throw the block at them.
Wart: The wart fight can be very challenging with wart spitting out his bubbles in a line with the player having to dodge the gaps in between while throwing the vegetables from the dream machine at the obese toad.
Super Mario Bros 3:
The third game from the Mario series has some admittedly boring bosses as pretty much all of the main bosses are the same with only about two being unique.
Boom-Boom Miniboss: Boom-Boom is what most people think of when they say Mario bosses are bad and easy, and I agree the only “danger” is that Boom-Boom may show his spikes before you land on him to “trick” you.
Koopalings (Besides Lemmy/Wendy): 5 of the seven Koopalings are all the same fight with very minor changes such as the ground shaking or the boss moving faster, the Koopalings mostly just fire three magic rings in your direction and jump at you when you stomp on them.
Lemmy: The Lemmy fight is Different from the Koopalings, as Lemmy fires his bouncing balls at Lemmy and rolls around on the ball after you hit him, this doesn't mean it's hard as I don’t even think Lemmy can harm you unless you just jump right into him.
Wendy: The Wendy fight is unique as instead of three rings Wendy summons hoops that will bounce around the room making it pretty difficult to jump on Wendy’s head since the hoops will damage you while you’re in mid-air making it impossible to dodge away from the hoops shot by her.
Bowser: The Bowser fight is probably the best in the 8-bit era of Mario. The Koopa King will spit fire at Mario, The King Koopa will also try to shoot the fire in random directions to try to fool Mario into jumping into them, The Koopa King will also try to Ground-Pound on Mario, But this is also how you defeat him because the floor is made from breakable blocks, Mario has to guide Bowser into Ground-Pounding onto the same spot of blocks until he ground bounds into the pit below the blocks, Overall being a great boss fight.
Super Mario Land:
The bosses of Super Mario Land are Fairly unique and different from many 2d Mario bosses with Most of them being similar to Shmup bosses.
King Totomesu: The King Totomesu fight is a copy of the original boss fights from Super Mario Bros. The only real difference is that Totomesu can only be Jumped over to beat.
Dragonzama: This boss fight is one of the three Shmup bosses in the game the boss is slightly challenging while the boss moves up and down on the screen shooting fireballs periodically alone is pretty easy to dodge, the real challenge comes with the energy ball that bounces around the screen making you stay on edge during the fight.
Hiyoihoi: This boss is probably the worst of the bunch being more of a platforming challenge than a fight as the boss throws boulders at Mario, Mario having to jump on top of the boulders to get past the stone head.
Boikinton: This boss is the second shmup boss and probably the best, the boss is fairly hectic as the cloud bounces around the boss arena and fires homing flying chickens at Mario. The Chickens can be fairly hard to dodge as the boss bounces around the arena making it hard to dodge the chickens and the cloud at the same time.
Tatanga: Tatana is the final boss of Super Mario Land And is the final shmup boss of the game Tatanga fires large cannon balls at Mario that explode into three cannon balls when shot by Mario’s ship. This boss is overall a pretty good final boss and a very fun fight.
Super Mario World:
This is the first 16-bit game of the Mario series and is widely known as one of the best 2d Mario games, but most people say that the bosses in the game are lackluster but I say otherwise. Let me explain.
Iggy/Larry Koopa: These fights take place on a shell-like platform that teeters from left to right, Mario has to jump on the Koopa to send them back and knock them into the lava below, The Bosses will roll fireballs down the platform at Mario. The Larry fight’s only real difference is the Lava bubbles that leap from the lava below making the fight more difficult by its environment, overall being pretty good boss fights.
Morton/Roy Koopa: These boss fights take place in an arena with two walls on each side that the boss will use to climb up the walls of the arena and leap down from the ceiling once they’re right above Mario, when the boss slams on the floor they will shake the ground causing Mario to be stunned in place unless he is in the air, this is dangerous as the boss will then walk over to Mario to try and damage him getting harder each time as the boss gets faster after every hit and the walls will also close in after every hit (only in Roy’s fight). This fight is fairly amazing.
Lemmy/Wendy: These fights are, In my opinion, the best boss out of the three bosses that are shared between two Koopalings, The boss will pop out of the pipes on the bottom of the arena along with two decoy Koopalings that will damage you if you try and jump on them along with one lava bubble that bounces around the arena (two in the wendy fight), The only major difference between the two fights is that the Lemmy fight’s pipes are different heights and in the Wendy fight they’re completely level with each other.
Ludwig Von Koopa: The Ludwig fight is my favorite boss in the game being nothing but a 1v1 against the Oldest Koopaling With Ludwig hopping around the arena making it pretty hard to jump on his head, his main attack is spitting horizontally moving fireballs at Mario making Mario have to jump over the fireballs to get to Ludwig and jump on his head. One of the best parts of the fight (in my opinion) Is after you hit Ludwig when he goes into his shell and slides around the arena at high speeds to damage Mario.
The Big Boo: The Big Boo boss fight is a surprise being the first of the two secret boss fights in the game, the fight involves throwing grabbable blocks from under Mario at the big boo. The challenge comes from the two smaller boos that constantly go after you during the fight and the fact that you cannot constantly attack the big boo because they become incorporeal after you attack him once. This fight is a surprise since you can go through the entire game without even encountering the big boo.
Reznor: The Reznor fight is the second secret fight of the game this time with an entire secret fortress level beforehand, the four Reznors are on a Ferris wheel and Mario has to bump the platform the Reznors are on to defeat them while the Reznor's spit fireballs at Mario after the second reznor is defeated the floor will start breaking making Mario have to jump on the Ferris wheel and try to dodge the dino’s fireballs and defeat the Reznor at the same time, being a great fight
Bowser in the Clown Car: This Bowser fight is a very engaging battle with the Koopa king throwing down Big metal balls on top of Mario and sending down exploding m\Mechakoopas that Mario has to throw back at Bowser, After The King Koopa gets hit 3 times by the Throne Mecha Koopas he will fly above the boss arena and send down fireballs from the Clown car That can be tricky to dodge at the moment, hitting Bowser 3 more times will cause Bowser to crash ending the fight and saving the day.
Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins:
The bosses of Super Mario Land 2:6 Golden Coins are fairly simple with most of the bosses only having 1 or 2 attacks they use through the fight to make them unique.
Big Bird: The big bird boss fight is the most simple boss in the game but is also one of the most engaging with the Bird periodically swooping down from one of the top corners of the boss arena making Mario time when he jumps on top of his head or risk getting hit by the Bird.
Tatanga: the Tatanga boss fight is a surprising reveal with Mario having just defeated Tatanga in the previous Mario Land game. In the fight, Tatanga flies on either the right or left side and fires out energy beams from the front of his spaceship and also fires explosive balls from the bottom of his spaceship this causes Mario to have to jump over them to avoid taking damage, but Mario also must avoid jumping too high as to not get hit by the laser beam that is fired from Tatanga's spaceship.
Sewer rat: The sewer rat tried to attack Mario by ramming its spikes nose into him and will try to accomplish this by using the many pipes in the boss arena to try and trick Mario into not knowing where the rat is going to pop out from, the rat will also run on top of the ceiling to try and land on top of Mario when they are right above him.
Witch: The witch has a pretty fun fight with Mario standing on three pots, the Witch will show up on either the right or left side of the boss arena and will fire a fireball at the bottom of the pots making the pot lid rise into the spikes on the ceiling hurting Mario if Mario gets launched with the lid, Mario must jump on top of the witch when she appears and make sure no to get launched into the ceiling after he lands back on the pots.
The Three Little Pigs: This boss fight is unique with it having 3 phases (Being each of the pigs) With their separate way to attack Mario and each taking 3 hits to defeat. Starting with the first little piggy who rolls around on the ground gaining speed every time Mario jumps on his head, Then the second little piggy who jumps from left to right in an arc that can be pretty tricky to dodge, the third little piggy zig-zags around from left to right in the arena, this can make it tricky to land a hit on the pig because the pattern of the zig-zag is quite unpredictable.
Octopus: this is the most simple boss of the game with it being able to be defeated in seconds if you try hard enough, The octopus will swim around the boss arena and spawn little octopi that swim up and off the screen, an easy boss fight overall.
Wario: the Wario fight is an amazing fight with Wario using the same powerups and moves that Mario does throughout his adventure in three phases. The first phase of the fight starts with Wario running around the boss arena and jumping at Mario causing a stunning earthquake when he lands Mario has to jump to avoid being stunned and also avoid the falling disco balls that move horizontally from the ceiling. For the second phase of the boss, Wario will use the Bunny Cap to fly into the air above Mario and once he's directly above Mario he'll fall onto the ground trying to crush Mario under his girth. In the last phase, Wario will use the Fire Flower and throw giant fireballs at Mario that travel at him in a spiral and try to run towards Mario Simply jump on his ugly head three times and he'll shrink into the little greedy jerk he is Ending the game and giving Mario his mansion back!
submitted by Any-Ask-9714
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2023.06.03 21:47 AudienceParticular22 Middle to Northern CA trip - suggestions
Hi, Please excuse the broadness of my question here. I'll try to give enough detail to make it answerable.
I've been to Socal a few times. LA once, San Diego twice. Had a good time. Particularly liked La Jolla in SD, where we stayed the last time. Hopefully that helps with the "vibe" we like. We tend to prefer quiet areas, ideally with good dining, and despite not being old, we're not partiers and usually get along just fine amongst affluent senior residents, haha. We also really like to be near beaches/water. We like to be nea visit bars, restaurants, cities, etc but would prefer quiet and subdued over active and loud in terms of lodging.
We're considering a late December trip somewhere, and mid to Northern CA is a contender. We'd like to see the Napa Valley, and I'd really like to drive the PCH down through Big Sur. I'd like to visit some of the rocky beaches, state parks, etc. We'd potentially make some specific, curated stops in the Bay area, but SF doesn't really appeal to me as a place to set up home base for the week. We would definitely be renting a car. I know this isn't an ideal weather time, but it's the only week we can do logistically. Due to the weather, I don't think we'd go too far north, as from what I can tell, it just gets more rainy and stereotypically Pacific North Western this time of the year as you approach Oregon.
Now for my question: given this info about our preferences and the time of year, does anyone have recommendations as to areas we'd want to look into for lodging? We'd be looking for middle of the road lodgings price wise. Probably not under 100/night, definitely not over 250ish/night.
Carmel by the Sea seems no more than a couple hours away from any of the places we'd visit, and it looks like our vibe, although I know it's small and it doesn't look like there's even a ton of basics like restaurants and coffee shops.
I'd love to hear input from others who knows this region of the country.
submitted by AudienceParticular22
to travel [link] [comments]
2023.06.03 21:23 fitnessjobs_global 📲 New Job: Fitness Trainer at Planet Fitness - CA in Rowland Heights, California, us 💪
2023.06.03 20:11 HighHeeledDuck Quick trip report 5/31-6/2
5/31 -Arrived mid afternoon to DS for quick shopping and to pick up AP (We live in North FL and took a year break from them) Checked into Pop room and went down for a quick bite in the food court and for the kids (7 and 5) to play in arcade, which always seemed to be one of the things my kids love most about Disney for some reason.
6/1 - Rope dropped HS (First time using Skyliner as a hotel guest and what a absolute treat.) Short line but was always moving and makes getting to park a treat. Booked a G+ for MMRR later in morning while we rode. After rope drop, rushed to SDD for kids to have change of heart, the height in person vs YouTube videos got to them, lol. Pivoted and did TSM and Saucers in quick order and then headed over to GE to ride the Falcon. After that it was time for our G+ on MMRR. Fantastic preshow and ride, easily top 2 overall family favorite. Afterwards rushed over to do Dance Party and then meet and greets for all the DisJunior friends was a huge hit with our kids. Then we had a 10:50 lunch at Prime Time cafe (which I somehow never heard about the colorful wait staff before and was a awesome surprise.) Food was excellent and will definitely be in my sit down rotation going forward. During lunch I started to stack G+ for afternoon fun at MK. After lunch we headed back to the hotel for a few hours break/naps.
Around 330 we left and caught a bus to MK and during the break I was able to stack G+ for Buzz, Ariel meet for the wife and daughter and Pirates for myself and son, Peter Pan and a ILL for 7DMT. I have become obsessed with this strategy of rope dropping for a few rides and then breaking and stacking for the afternoon/night. By the time we left at 830, we were able to do Buzz, BTMR, Pooh, Ariel ride and meet, Speedway, Teacups, Storytime with Belle, Pirates, Peter Pan and 7DMT taking our time while also taking 45 minutes for dinner at Cosmic Rays. Granted it did not seem overly crowded but wasn’t empty either. I find this way I don’t have to stress much in the morning planning out my whole day, I can asses at lunch and plan where to hop to or return to later.
6/2 - Was 4th car into Epcot (We returned home this day, why I drove instead of using Skyliner to save trip all the way back to Pop. Was a tough day if you wanted to do E ticket rides because Test Track was down the entire time, Remy’s was down until nearly noon and Guardians had a few issues in the morning. So after trying to rope drop Remy, we decided to stroll around World Showcase on our way to Norway to get in line for Anna/Elsa meet which was lovely and then a breakfast at Akershus Hall for Princess meet and greets. Food was excellent and staff and princess’s were amazing. Snow White forgot about us but came back and spent quite a while with my daughter and made it super magical. After lunch we did a G+ for Frozen ride and then made our way around the end of the showcase towards our next G+ at Soarin. On the way, we noticed Pluto under a little pavilion and stopped because my son was getting jealous of all the autographs my daughter was getting. Meet was awesome and afterwards, and I didn’t know this was a thing, but Pluto and his handlers invited my kids to walk him down the path towards the lagoon where he was taking a break. The handler and photopass photographer we’re amazing and talking to my kids and asking them all about our trip and turned into the absolute highlight! (I already submitted compliments in the app for them.) After that we did Soarin, Nemo and wandered the aquarium for a little while before stopping to get our figment magnets and calling it a trip!
All in all in was a excellent 48 hour trip. Weather was amazing for June in Florida, low 80’s high and breezy most of them time.
submitted by HighHeeledDuck
to WaltDisneyWorld [link] [comments]
2023.06.03 20:10 FightKnight22 A series of unfortunate events....Suic*de seems the best option now ... please read the whole thing
educational_info: Ruined (currently in 11)
A series of unfortunate events…..This was not supposed to happen…what should I do now
Before beginning I'll let you know that I'll miss a lot of details which may be irrelevant intentionally or unintentionally
Hi everyone, my name is X. My parents are both govt employees and we are a very well to do family. So from childhood I have been into coding, computers etc. I used to code games in class 8 on visual basic,etc languages and from childhood (lower nursery std) I was introduced to the world of computers. My passion was coding and aim was to do something in CSE or coding. Last year in class 10th I came to know about IIT-JEE, and thought of preparing for it. I was always passionate about my career and hardworking. I came to know about the concept of dummy schools in November, December from an elder brother of mine, who went through non-schooling and got 97.7%ile in Jan attempt. Serious about my career, I thought it would be best to get enrolled in that school which my mom and I did in January after pre-boards. To inform you all I live in Kolkata, and the culture of dummy school is not prevalent here. After board examinations in March I went on a trip to Darjeeling which was the best week in my life. After that everything turned upside down. When I came back in April, I went to my first classes in Aakash (weekend batch). It was awesome. I was supposed to attend the dummy school on the first day which was 12th of April, and then not attend it anymore at all except the midterms and finals. So I went there. The school was actually not affiliated to CBSE but they apparently have a tie up with some bigger affiliated school. During practicals and boards we are supposed to go there to give the exams wearing that school's uniform. Looking at the conditions it cannot be called a school actually. I attended the school and the environment was shit. 3 people behind me had apparently failed in grade 6, people were all failures or something and the teachers were absolute scammers whom I can't even determine have proper degrees or not, they were pure scamsters. And the whole experience was extremely traumatic. I came back home. 13th April: I started doubting a 100 things. One thing that came to mind was how could I actually give the class 12 board practical exams if they didn't even practice any practical with me. I posted about all this on reddit days after days coming to know in places like Kota or Delhi NCR coachings like Allen teach the students practicals some weeks b4 the exams. For practicals here, what they do is they send these students to that big school with that school's uniform and make them copy paste/cheat from a sheet of paper despite an invigilator being near. This made me highly anxious and worried, everything was uncertain. Actually the whole dummy school system was integrated with the coachings in these states. In here places like Kolkata that culture is absent. These non affiliated but tied up schools basically run illegally. Anyways…14th April: My birthday, everyone wishing me on WhatsApp the whole day and I'm worried about this school shit……I understood I have come to a wrong place and need to shift to a proper school, after interaction with the people properly I understood they were frauds. 15th - 25th : Pure hell, no studies only researching for schools, roaming around in the streets in car with mom who was getting extreme harrasment and as a result beating the shit out of me which is fine. Finally I landed a school which was taking in admissions but they were about 1 hr away from my house and it was not possible…so mom said no. In May first week my father who works in Ladakh (all India services) got severely ill due to sugar fall and went into ICU in Leh hospital. My mom went there to my dad on flight. For a whole week I stayed at the house of my school friend, still doing nothing with such mental condition. On 14th May my ICSE results came out and I got 91.8%, while everyone congratulated I was traumatized, (in between lot of things happening, irrelevant). I again contacted schools whom I knew would open up after board results. Got one top level school who were still taking in admissions in Science stream….my dad and mom returned on 16th May ig….then my dad admitted me to the new school with the following subjects - PCM, BIOTECHNOLOGY, BENGALI ( the school had already started and they forced 6 subjects down my throat, physical education was not available nor cs…if science then only this combo). The school was not giving science to the people who were trying to get admitted after boards but they readily gave it to me looking at my board marks. Their tests would start by the end of June and their school would resume at 12th June….I had done almost nothing till then and biotechnology+vernacular would be a horrific combo for a JEE aspirant. With such a combination, shortage of time and the vast syllabus already covered in 1½ months, i knew I could not cope up. Switched my stream to commerce on 29th May. Btw getting de-admitted from that fraudster school is a different story so skipping since irrelevant.
I was a dedicated student, from childhood I wanted to be into CSE, made a lot of projects and stuff, but now my identity, fate, etc everything got ruined because of one bad decision that was to go to that dummy school and that too from a good intention. My life is ruined, my aspirations, goals, everything. My mom and dad has faced so much harrasment the last two months mentally, physically, financially (loosing a lakh in Aakash). I'm from a well to do family and all this wasn't supposed to happen, everything got ruined because of one wrong step. Now that after so much bullshit I have come to commerce I feel terrible that I can never get into coding….but I'll try my best to excel in this field. My dad even after so much harrasment is staying positive and saying to focus on IPMAT, and for backup target eco hons. colleges like SRCC, Delhi school of economics, Xavier's, St Stephen's and then MBA with CAT+ try to get 98+ in boards now that it's commerce.
I'm feeling ruined from inside because my dream of going into USA, my identity as a techie, coding skills, dreams of being a coder, start-up,etc everything is crushed for some stupid reason which only happened with me alone ….why me??? I watched shows like Silicon Valley, Bojack Horseman, friends, big bang theory, Rick and Morty, South Park, Seinfeld,etc and dreamt of USA. Ok no issue with that being ruined….but my identity as a coder, a techie? My career? Last two months I couldn't eat properly, study, watch shows, every moment just reimagining myself singning up in a proper school in 10th, calling 100s of people, feeling like a vegetable doing nothing in such a mental state, etc everything. Travelling school to school in burning heart in my car, getting beaten up by mom, then worrying for one week when my mom was not there and my dad was extremely sick in ICU. I'm just 17 why is this happening with me.
Can anyone tell me what to do now, any consoling words? Is there any possibility I can grab a coding job if I do something right from now? Dropping from school? Or should I forget coding and my passion CSE and focus on building a career in management. Is there hope in MBA if I can do it from top institutes like IIM, XLRI, any kind of career guidance would be great. I'm doubtful whether there are good career prospects in commerce stream (and I'm absolutely not interested in CA,etc). And if I can't go back into CSE, I want to get into the top of the game in commerce and want a pathway to earn most money in future and get to the top (people like Ajay Banga,etc) as a compensation to what happened with me the last 2 months. I think I'll have diabetes now. Why did this had to happen? I'm completely drained physically, mentally, emotionally, etc. I've considered sui*cide a lot of times, do you think that can be a viable option from here? What should I do? Btw if you check my reddit history it's filled with related questions in last two months. I want peace now. The thing is such unique turn of bad events has never happened in anyone's life I Guess. I'm confused with who I'm, my identity. And btw so much worse shit has happened in between but I had to skip them else it would be too long to finish and coming to the point.
submitted by FightKnight22
to Btechtards [link] [comments]
2023.06.03 19:35 autotldr Forest fires force thousands out of their homes in Quebec in the North Shore
This is the best tl;dr I could make, original
reduced by 85%. (I'm a bot)
Thousands of people were ordered out of their homes in and around Sept-Îles, Que., because of two fires burning nearby, with more than 100 wildfires burning across the province. Summary Source FAQ Feedback Top keywords: fire#1 Sept-Îles#2 people#3 Friday#4 community#5
With the number of out-of-control forest fires across Quebec having quickly multiplied, the city of Sept-Îles on the province's North Shore has declared a local state of emergency and has put in place a mandatory evacuation order for several neighbourhoods.
Steeve Beaupré, mayor of Sept-Îles, said one of the two out of control forest fires in the region spread south, near Sept-Îles, overnight.
With 120 fires burning, Quebec asks for army's help.
The province's fire prevention agency, the Société de protection des forêts contre le feu, is warning Quebecers that more fires are out of control than the agency can handle.
The situation in the town of Chapais in northern Quebec - where about 1,000 people had to leave their homes this week - has improved, but Caron said the biggest worry is about the fires in Sept-Îles.
Post found in /worldnews, /Quebec and /canada.
NOTICE: This thread is for discussing the submission topic. Please do not discuss the concept of the autotldr bot here.
submitted by autotldr
to autotldr [link] [comments]
2023.06.03 19:35 autotldr Forest fires force thousands out of their homes in Quebec in the North Shore
This is the best tl;dr I could make, original
reduced by 85%. (I'm a bot)
Thousands of people were ordered out of their homes in and around Sept-Îles, Que., because of two fires burning nearby, with more than 100 wildfires burning across the province. Summary Source FAQ Feedback Top keywords: fire#1 Sept-Îles#2 people#3 Friday#4 community#5
With the number of out-of-control forest fires across Quebec having quickly multiplied, the city of Sept-Îles on the province's North Shore has declared a local state of emergency and has put in place a mandatory evacuation order for several neighbourhoods.
Steeve Beaupré, mayor of Sept-Îles, said one of the two out of control forest fires in the region spread south, near Sept-Îles, overnight.
With 120 fires burning, Quebec asks for army's help.
The province's fire prevention agency, the Société de protection des forêts contre le feu, is warning Quebecers that more fires are out of control than the agency can handle.
The situation in the town of Chapais in northern Quebec - where about 1,000 people had to leave their homes this week - has improved, but Caron said the biggest worry is about the fires in Sept-Îles.
Post found in /worldnews, /Quebec and /canada.
NOTICE: This thread is for discussing the submission topic. Please do not discuss the concept of the autotldr bot here.
submitted by autotldr
to autotldr [link] [comments]
2023.06.03 19:23 DealsCanada DEWALT Screwdriver Set (10-Piece) DWHT65203 – $11.69+tax – IN STORE ONLY!!!
submitted by DealsCanada
to ShopCanada [link] [comments]
2023.06.03 17:10 dragndon Purge lines are perfect….but….
I’m confused. Why are my purge lines absolutely perfect but nothing else is. The purge line sticks to the build plate just fine(i.e. rub your finger over it and it stays) but the rest does not stick anywhere near as well (or at all at times).
Actually, I‘m sure this is related to z-offset because the temps aren’t changed. I just don’t understand why it is different.
I’ve set my z-offset to 0.2 but the purge line does it at 0.28. I am not understanding why a greater separation from the bed is better for adhesion. At least that’s what I think is happening here.
Ender 5 Plus Micro Swiss NG Extruder Glass Bed Creality Enclosure
eSun white PLA+ Temps 220/60
Start GCode, including first part of skirt drawing(not the complete GCode)
;FLAVOR:Marlin ;TIME:2486 ;Filament used: 2.14744m ;Layer height: 0.2 ;MINX:89 ;MINY:157.263 ;MINZ:0.2 ;MAXX:261 ;MAXY:192.737 ;MAXZ:5
;Generated with Cura_SteamEngine main
M140 S70 M105 M190 S70 M104 S210 M105 M109 S210
M82 ;absolute extrusion mode
M201 X500.00 Y500.00 Z100.00 E5000.00 ;Setup machine max acceleration M203 X500.00 Y500.00 Z10.00 E50.00 ;Setup machine max feedrate M204 P500.00 R1000.00 T500.00 ;Setup Print/Retract/Travel acceleration M205 X8.00 Y8.00 Z0.40 E5.00 ;Setup Jerk M220 S100 ;Reset Feedrate M221 S100 ;Reset Flowrate
G28 ;Home M420 S1 Z2 ;Enable ABL using saved Mesh and Fade Height
G92 E0 ;Reset Extruder G1 Z2.0 F3000 ;Move Z Axis up G1 X10.1 Y20 Z0.28 F5000.0 ;Move to start position G1 X10.1 Y200.0 Z0.28 F1500.0 E15 ;Draw the first line G1 X10.4 Y200.0 Z0.28 F5000.0 ;Move to side a little G1 X10.4 Y20 Z0.28 F1500.0 E30 ;Draw the second line G92 E0 ;Reset Extruder G1 Z2.0 F3000 ;Move Z Axis up
G92 E0 G92 E0 G1 F2400 E-3
;LAYER:0 M107 G0 F6000 X94.412 Y158.802 Z0.2 G0 X89.001 Y168.788
G1 F2400 E0 G1 F1200 X89.01 Y168.123 E0.02212 G1 X89.063 Y167.187 E0.0533 G1 X89.195 Y166.258 E0.08451 G1 X89.406 Y165.344 E0.11571 G1 X89.694 Y164.452 E0.14689 G1 X90.057 Y163.587 E0.17809 G1 X90.492 Y162.756 E0.20928
submitted by dragndon
to FixMyPrint [link] [comments]
2023.06.03 17:06 micktalian The Gardens of Deathworlders: A Blooming Love (Part 18)
Part 18 A Delicate Situation (Part 1) (Part 17)
"Aho, Zim, ni je na?" Msko was the first to notice and greet the relatively short, stout, and furry being that just waddled into The Hammer’s Control Center.
"Ah, Administrator Zimuzari, I am honored you could join us." Atxika's eyes quickly shot up from the holographic display being projected from the table she was leaning on and landed on Kyim'ayik colony leader. "Have you had an opportunity to read through the initial report we sent you?"
"Hello there, Mkso, Admiral Atxika. It's…" The reddish-brown ball of fur paused his adorable squeaking, half covered his mouth with one of his paws, and let out such a tremendous yawn that Atxika could see both the massive front incisors as well as the not quite as large, but still impressive, set of canines behind them. "My apologies, I woke up less than half an hour ago. But it is good to see you both, as well as an honor and privilege to join you in your Command Center, Admiral."
"The honor and privilege are mine." Atxika bowed slightly with her pleasant smile still wide. "And I would like to apologize for waking you. It will still be a few days before we arrive at our destination and this strategy meeting could have waited."
"No, no, no, that's alright." Zim quickly replied with his species' high pitch and chirpy version of galactic common while stretching out and flicking his long, shiny whiskers as he approached the military leaders. "I've already gotten about nine hours of sleep. Skipping the last hour or two has killed me yet! And I’d rather get started on this sooner rather than later.”
Admiral Atxika had to put in real effort to prevent herself start cooing at the delightful manner with which Zim made his way over to the holo-table and climbed the stool-like chair designed for his anatomy. The long, wide, and flat tail distinctive of the Kyim'ayik was lifted just off the ground and stretched far back to balance the rest of the being’s body weight while the relatively short hind legs carried him along in an awkward, though comfortable, bipedal gait. With the limited range of motion in the squat, fuzzy man’s leg-like arms as he stretched, it was clear his species was more intended for quadrupedal locomotion. Despite that fact, the posture of the Kyim'ayik Administrator while he walked was far more similar to her own, or a human’s, than what she had remembered from her previous interactions with the species. However, as Zim stretched out his back to its full length, adding good chunk to his overall height, and began climbing the stool so he could have a proper view of holographic display, Atxika was suddenly reminded of a domesticated species of vermin-hunting musteloid from her species’ homeworld that were quite popular pets. Even though she knew this furry little man was a well respected guest on her ship, and a being from an Ascended species, she couldn’t get over how adorable he was.
“I hope you didn’t wake the misses.” Msko commented with a sarcastic tone while shooting the beaver-otter a cheeky wink.
“Nah, that woman could sleep through an atomic detonation.” Hearing the galactic common word for ‘atomic detonation’ be said with such an endearing squeak was pushing the Admiral to the absolute limits of her self control.
“I can have some food and refreshments brought, if you like.” Atxika interjected while doing her best to keep her smile from growing too wide and showing all of her teeth.
“Oh n-” Zim was about to politely decline before Msko interrupted him with a bit too much energy.
“Yes, please!” The War Chief blurted out. “That restaurant Tens took me to in your Amenities Section was amazing! I knew this ship had a huge manufacturing capability, but I didn’t realize you’d have freshly grown food.”
“I’ll have the private command facilities prepare something.” The Admiral quickly replied to ensure that Zim couldn’t refuse. “How does a zetloxoni platter sound?”
“What are-” Zim began to ask before Atxika realized her mistake and explained.
"Zetloxoni are fish fillets, rolled in a semisweet and highly nutrient-rich grain, and occasionally topped with more fish or other ingredients." The Admiral replied while typing into the display to bring up a holographic representation of the sushi-like dish she was describing. "This is what I was thinking."
"That actually looks amazing!" The Kyim'ayik ears suddenly perked up and eyes grew wide with delight.
"Wonderful! It's settled then." Atxika pressed in a few more commands to place the order then tried to redirect the conversation to reason for the meeting. "I find it is often easier to address delicate situations with a clear mind and full stomach."
"Delicate?" The squeaky reply carried a noticeably sarcastic tone as Zim shifted his attention towards the holographic representation of a planet and saucer shaped ship orbiting it. "That looks like Arnehilians. Ain't nothing delicate about the Grays, except maybe their physical forms."
"Well, they're definitely Arnehilians but…" Msko interjected with a hesitant tone that caught his Kyim'ayik friend off guard. "We don't think they're Grays."
There was a second of confused silence as Zim stared into the War Chief's eyes to see if this was a joke. Before Nishnabe could bring himself to explain, however, Atxika chimed in to give the proper explanation.
"What I am about to say is Level 8 classified information from Military Command and should be treated with the appropriate amount of secrecy. Do you understand?" After an incredibly professional and understanding nod from the Administrator, the Admiral continued. "We have confirmed the existence of a non-aligned, neutral-standing collective of decentralized Arnehilian groups who refer to themselves as, quote, 'the Greens', or the Free People of Sundered Arnehil. According to all reports, they are an ecologically-minded, nomadic, agricultural society who regularly travel in such a way as to avoid any means of tracking or detection by their… less peaceful cousins. However, there are a few who regularly check in with Military Command to avoid potential confrontations. There have been no indications that any of their groups discovered so far are violent, nor even capable of galactic standard levels of self-defense."
"I thought those rumors were just misinformation or propaganda." Zim was now much more earnest as gazed upon the holographic saucer floating above the planet. "And you say they're even ecologically-minded?"
"Our drones haven't detected any significant environmental disruptions." Msko sounded far more nonchalant about this situation than his long-time friend was expecting. There was no aggression or anger in his movements as he indicated towards a highlight portion of the holographic planet floating above the table and prompted the display to project a new hologram. "Their settlement is using solar and wind energy to operate their infrastructure and accumulate power reserves. From what we can tell, they're only a week away from finishing their agricultural harvest and two weeks away from their power reserves being fully recharged. If we had been delayed a month, there's a good chance we would have missed them completely."
“What kind of resource impacts would I have to account for?” The Administrator quickly followed up.
“Maybe a couple hundred tons worth of basic elements and organic matter.” It was clear Msko had already scoured everything and couldn’t find any reason to be concerned. “But the drones' sensors can’t detect any real difference between now and six months ago. Like I said, if we were delayed a month, we might not have even known they were ever there.”
"I see…" There was a moment of pause as Zim stared at the highly detailed holographic representation of a temporary settlement located only a couple dozen kilometers from where he had been planning his own colony.
The two military officers remained silent to give the Kyim'ayik Administrator all the time he needed to think about what he had just been told. Each species, without exception, had some unique form of architectural design and aesthetic, and the variety of buildings Zim was looking at were no different. The extensive use of cheap, easy to produce polymers, the simple, module construction, and rounded, nearly circular, aesthetic to all of the building were all clearly Arnehilian. However, there was something humble, almost intentionally so, about the lack of silver-metal detailing combined with the way the structures simply flowed into the untouched trees around them. Rather than a budding slaver-colony run by beings who thought themselves entitled everyone and everything, this looked like the respectfully maintained dwelling of a temporary guest who wished to remain discreet. Though the Administrator knew his duty to his people would normally demand he evict these uninvited squatters from his land, he couldn’t help but feel something almost kindred in what he was seeing.
"Have you made contact with them yet?" Zim flatly asked, though he could already guess the answer. "Do they know we're coming?"
"No and no." Atxika promptly answered, while letting her smile fall into a more professional expression. "Their ship is inactive, seems to be in a state of disrepair, and is currently in a free-floating, low orbit. According to our scans, their ground-based sensor systems are incapable of detecting our reconnaissance drones. However, they would absolutely notice our fleet entering the system."
"Well, we don't wanna scare them." Zim finally squeaked out with a slightly giggle that sounded more like a chirp. "Reptiles always freak out when you startle them."
It had been nine hours of working in the greenhouse when Mayor Harideth noticed the young dark gray-skinned, olive-drab clad messenger running towards him at full speed. Though he had known this young woman her entire life, she was a member of her community after all, he had never seen her running this fast. It wasn't the speed of her approach that made him stop what he was doing, rather it was the unadulterated fear plastered across her face. As Nalhilum sprinted down the path between the vertical hydroponic racks, a few of the Arnehilians in the greenhouse took notice, though didn't stop their work. When the young woman came to a sliding halt just in front of the Mayor, it looked like she was about to keel over from exhaustion and stress.
"My dear, please." Harideth had a genuinely concerned expression on his scaly face as he quickly moved to brace the young woman and prevent her from falling over. "You are too young to give yourself a heart attack running like that. Whatever is happening, you don't need t-"
"Mayor, we've been detected." The dread that came out of Nalhilum's voice and the tears in her eyes as she looked up at her community leader shattered the man's soul.
"Do not fear, Nalhilum, my dear. Please sit and rest. We will be fine. I promise." Harideth helped the young woman slowly lower herself into a seated position, plucked a just-ripe fruit from a vine he had been tending, and handed it to her before turning towards the closest other people in the greenhouse. "Maricha, please see to Nalhilum and ensure she recovers. I am needed in my mayoral duties immediately."
In the few seconds it took for the worker to be at the young woman's side, she had already begun nibbling on the sweet treat, savoring it as this was her last opportunity, and the Mayor had given her a gentle kiss on the forehead then began running out of the greenhouse. Though Harideth felt he had a personal duty to stay at his messenger's side until she had fully recovered and ensured she wouldn't need further assistance, he had a greater duty to his community as a whole. Despite feeling the same fear that he saw in Nalhilum’s eyes, and wanting to ball up and hide with every fiber of his body, he charged as fast as he could towards the town hall building. Though he knew running this fast was not good for his health, especially in his old age and after working all day, the only thing on the Mayor’s mind was the safety and future of the people who trusted him with their lives.
“Please don’t let it be the Oppressors.” Harideth muttered to himself as he ran as fast as his legs could take him. “By the Gods of Old, please don’t let it be them.”
For nearly a millennium now, his people had been free of those who flew the red and gray flag and, despite the many hurdles and setbacks, they had found their own form of happiness. After the Dynastic family who had kept his working-class ancestors in literal chains had been dealt a devastating blow when their capital ship was overrun by a group of abducted, pre-Ascension beings, it sparked a revival of the Free People’s ideology in the slave population. Stories of people living together in mutual aid, love, and respect once only told in hushed whispers were shouted from the rooftops as most of the surviving members of the Dynasty were thrown from them. Once all of the slaves of the other species were freed and on their way back to their respective homes, the budding groups of Greens scattered into the interstellar winds to avoid reprisal from other Dynasties which were sure to want revenge. There was even a dream that they would find other groups of Free Arnehilians living among the stars.
It was a blessing that their rebellion had initially gone unnoticed by the rest of the Arnehilian Dynasties and the greater community as that gave his ancestors time to disperse beyond the ability to be completely tracked down. Even if a few scattered communities eventually met their death or worse, the end of their freedom, there would be some who were able to survive and thrive. Though Harideth had assumed his nomadic village may eventually run into someone, he put a great deal of effort into minimizing that potential. In fact, he chose this very planet as their temporary stopping grounds specifically because it was far out of the way of most civilizations and people. After spending nearly a full season on this beautiful world, he had even started to grow attached to it and was looking for an excuse to postpone their migration in order to facilitate repairs to their ship. Being detected after so long, and with only a few weeks until they would have been ready to leave on their own, was something the Mayor could have never been prepared for.
“Make a hole!” A person wearing a dull green cap shouted down a rather cramped corridor that Harideth was barreling towards at full speed before quickly pulling back and nodding towards the man as he passed.
“Thank you, Chuzikum.” Harideth faintly mouthed while darting past the person and into the now cleared passageway that led outdoors.
Finally outside, the man only slowed his sprint to turn a few corners and avoid running into the few unwary people who had failed to notice him coming. He was less than a hundred meters away from the town hall building housing his destination, the command and control room, and he couldn’t stop now. Regardless of how hard his heart was beating, how much he felt his body overheating from the strain, and how much he wanted to just collapse, he couldn’t fail his people. As the building got closer and closer, Harideth tried to think through all of the possibilities of who it could be that had detected them. Though none of the options that came to his mind were particularly pleasant, from Bendari pirates to Qui’ztar law enforcement or even the Oppressors themselves, he was already trying to work out contingency plans as he finally approached the already open door and his assistant waiting for him beside it.
“Please close the door behind us, Marlati.” Harideth’s request was just barely audible as he crossed the threshold of the door and was quickly followed by his assistant who did as she was asked. “Who is it and what do they want?”
“The communication signal we are receiving registers as the Qui’ztar Third Matriarchy, Mayor Harideth.” Marlati quickly and quietly replied as she followed the man towards the command and control room.
“Oh, thank the Gods.” The Mayor stopped mid step and placed a hand on the wall next to lean and catch his breath for a moment. “This could still be very bad, but it could have also been so much worse.”
“Um, sir?” The Mayor’s assistant watched him with a hint of concern as she could see how much he was overheating. “Would you like me to get you a cooling pack?”
“Oh, no, that’s alright.” Harideth stood back up straight and continued towards his final destination, though a bit slower than before. As he turned back to his assistant, he gave a compassionate nod of approval. “You are too kind, my dear. This is just a…” The man’s voice trailed off as his thoughts began to concentrate on a plan of action.
“A what, sir?” Marlati nervously in a manner which caused the Mayor to look back at her. “I’m sorry sir, but this is the first time this has ever happened in my entire life.”
“First time for me too, Marlati.” Harideth admitted with a hit of nervous laughter. “But I do know enough about the Qui'ztar to not be issuing an immediate emergency evacuation order.”
“That’s not very reassuring.” Though the whine that just came his assistant would have been grating in any other circumstance, she was right and the Mayor knew it.
“That is the name of the game you help some of the children play, something of the magical planets?” Harideth stopped at the door to the room which separated him from his responsibilities as a Mayor.
“Adventures of the Magical Worlds, sir?”
“Yes! I believe there is a moral alignment chart in the rules somewhere.” Though it was clear that his assistant didn’t quite know what he was getting, it became incredibly obvious as he explained. “If I remember correctly, everything I’ve read about the Qui’ztar would put them roughly in the ‘hierarchical neutral’ category.”
“Ah…” The assistance was quite hesitant as she knew what that actually implied. “That still isn’t very reassuring.”
“They’re here to do a job. And as long as we comply and don’t get in their way, we’ll be fine.” The Mayor was doing his best to hold up his mask of confidence and not let this young feel what he felt.
“And what if their job is to kill us?”
“Then they wouldn’t have made their presence known. They would have simply shown up and sent us all to the next life.” However morbid that statement was, it actually did give the Marlati a small sense of real relief in the fact they weren't already dead as the door to the command and control room opened and the pair slowly walked in.
"Sir! Thank the Gods you're here!" A communications specialist shouted from his seat in front of a terminal towards the Mayor as he quickly approached.
"Of course, Telucima, I wouldn’t make you talk to them all by yourself." Harideth tried to crack a joke to the young woman behind the terminal in a vain attempt to calm her obviously flustered nerves. Though Telucima’s dark gray skin was never as shiny as a royal's, her face was especially dull and pale at the moment and the Mayor couldn’t help but empathize with her. “Now, please, give me your report. What do we know?”
“Well…” Telucima made a gulping sound as she swallowed some of the semi-poisonous saliva that had been building up in her mouth as a fear response. “There is a fairly substantial colony fleet headed our way being escorted by the First Independent Fleet of the Third Qui'ztar Matriarchy. They have stated that we are inhabiting an unregistered settlement on a planet that has already been claimed by the Kyim'ayik. However, they have not yet made any demands, claimed our settlement is in violation of any laws, or even made any threats. I am absolutely sure they know who we are, but they didn’t explicitly identify us in their message. I’m not exactly sure what it is going on, but the signal strength and delay indicate they are still a day or two away.”
“Interesting…” The Mayor commented with a more curious than scared tone while rubbing the top of his head in contemplation. “No demands, threats, or attempts to justify the use of force through galactic law… Is there any way we could get a real-time communications link established?”
“Sir? You want to talk to them?” Marlati could barely contain her fear as she interjected. “I thought every species hated us, and you want to talk to them?”
“They hate the bastard Oppressors, Marlati, though maybe not as much as we do.” Harideth knew this would be his one and only chance to make a good impression on what could otherwise be their impending doom and he was doing everything in his power to muster the inner courage needed for this conversation. “They may not know the difference between us and… them… yet. But something tells me they might.”
“Sir,” Telucima had redirected her attention back to her terminal and was running through the system to facilitate the Mayor’s request, “I can establish a quantum link, though it would require me to activate the relay on the ship. If there are any oppressors nearby, there’s a chance they could detect our presence and attempt to use the trace to track us down.”
“Do it.” The Mayor ordered with a tone that implied he knew the risks. “I want to see if these Qui’ztar would be willing to allow us to stay for the few weeks required to complete our harvest. Worst comes to worst, we’ll have to start packing everything up early and delay the repairs for another season.”
The next few moments were nearly silent aside from the sounds of a tapping keyboard and the occasional digitized ping from the terminal. Telucima had begun the task of awakening the ship, configuring the communications channel, and activating the relay through text-based commands on a simple, monochromatic screen, while the other two people clad in simple olive-drab clothing could do nothing but fester in their thoughts. While Harideth was busy planning out how he was going to grovel and beg for permission to finish his people’s desperately needed harvest of fresh food, Marlati was simply doing everything in her power not to shake in fear. When the final confirmation ping came from the terminal and Telucima began pressing her headset tightly to her ears, the faint whispers of a translated voice could be heard.
“Yes I can understand you…" The communications specialist, though lacking much previous experience in speaking with a member of another species, seemed to be focused solely on her job and not her fear. "Oh no, I'm sorry, this terminal doesn't have that function. It's… Yes, I can absolutely do that. Just give me one moment to set up the connection and I'll be right back with you."
In a flash, Telucima had taken off her headset, stood from her console, and was moving to a nearby bag resting on a table, much to the shock of the other Arnehilians. Before either the Mayor or his assistant could question the young woman, she was triumphantly holding up her personal data-tablet and was returning to her seat.
"What-" Harideth began before the young woman cut him off while pulling her tablet into the terminal.
"Ope, sorry about that, sir." The specialist cut off her mayor and began to explain in a rush. "I was speaking to a communications officer and she wanted an audio-visual feed to link to her commanding officer. This terminal doesn't haven't that functionality, but I can just just patch a link through my tablet. It's got a mic and camera and we can use it as the display."
“Good thinking, Telucima.” The Mayor laid a gentle, compassionate hand on the woman’s shoulder after she had placed the tablet at a good angle and sat back into her chair to type in the commands. “I knew you were the right person for this job.”
“It was the communications officer’s idea, sir.” Telucima couldn’t help herself but to be honest regardless of the praise. “I’m just glad there were instructions for this kind of patch in the training manual. It should just take a moment to load.”
When the relatively small screen came to life in front of the Mayor’s face, he saw three faces looking back at him with expectant eyes, and he froze in shock. Though none of the expressions looked out right hostile, he could tell none of those individuals would tolerate anything less than submission. Despite only ever seen descriptions of the being he was now looking at, all three could easily be identified. Even without his tail being visible, the furry, large-toothed person on the right was clearly a Kyim'ayik. The large, mostly-hairless, blue primate with pronounced tusks in the middle was, without a doubt, a Qui'ztar of particularly high rank. However, the not-as-large, similarly hairless, but copper-brown primate on the left was a species Harideth had a special fear, and particular reverence, for.
“Are… Are you a Nishnabe?” Harideth stammered out before even introducing himself or allowing these beings to introduce themselves, which prompted the Qui’ztar and Kyim'ayik to turn to the now confused human.
“Yes…” Msko replied hesitantly. “I take it you are aware of my people?”
“Aware…” Harideth couldn't stop the heartfelt smile from forming across his scaly face. “You… Your people… the Vanquishers of Tyrants, the Bane of Oppressors, the Unstoppable Rage, and the Saviors of the Oppressed… Your people are the reason my people have been blessed with a thousand years of freedom!”
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2023.06.03 16:43 LlamaLlamaTwo Stockholm Syndrome - Unemployment (Season Five Review)
Stockholm Syndrome (Football Manager 2022) Reymersholms IK - Division 2 Södra Svealand - Sweden …Unemployment…
Welcome back any and all returning readers as I attempt to recap the season just gone in our Scandinavian journeyman. I’d like to wish a warm welcome to any newcomers to the write-ups as we still find ourselves in Sweden, the land of meatballs and lovely landscapes. I found myself in need of a long desired vacation following the decision to leave Bergnäsets in the previous post. Following some time away (about a month in game) vacationing with the missus in the lovely city of Stockholm, I returned refreshed and rejuvenated to jump back into management. I knew that heading into the new year there wouldn’t be many first team managerial posts left following the usual coaching carousel that goes on in early December. Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on how you look at it, I didn’t see the lack of available jobs as an issue as we looked to follow up on a tumultuous relegation in the season prior.
At this point in the save I view myself as a project building manager. One that grows with a team over a period of multiple seasons in hopes of achieving sustained success. I also want to find my way out of the rigors of lower league management at some point in the hopes of quitting my day job. To do this we’ll need to rebuild our managerial reputation post relegation, as you’re unfortunately only remembered for the way your last job ended. With these points in mind, I was immediately drawn to a job opening in smack dab center of Stockholm of all places. …Employment…
Was the coincidentally timed vacation taken to Stockholm all a ploy to conjure up interest in our managerial services? I will neither confirm nor deny any and all questions related to the matter. Regardless, welcome to Reymersholms! Freshly promoted out of the fifth tier, Reymersholms are located in the heart of Stockholm with ambitions to not only stay up, but push for additional promotions in the seasons to come. This job seemed too good to pass up as it will hopefully prove to be mutually beneficial for both the club and myself as we look to leave a lasting legacy. Board expectations for the upcoming season are to only remain the Södra Svealand, but I think we have the potential to take the club a step further and look to push for promotion. With all current members of the squad on non-contracts we have full reign to completely reforge this side into one capable of challenging in the league. …Squad Building…
I wanted to build upon the system that we played in our four years at Bergnäsets. My goal here at Reymersholms would be to build upon a style of play that in the short term would keep us in the division. However, with greater aspirations than divisional stability our playstyle needs to be principally malleable as we look to add in player depth and quality. Our principles at Bergnäsets AIK were established with an underdog mentality heading into a majority of league fixtures. I want to abolish any sense of that mentality here as we will look to impose our game on the opposition. I would however like to carry over the hard working pressing mentality and higher defensive line as well. I think this shift in mentality will serve us well as the rest of the clubs in the Södra Svealand don’t seem to be filled with a large amount of quality. Hopefully that won’t come back to bite me. I’ll look to go over each individual position group role by role with the squad as we head into the first game of the season. Let’s start at the back and work our way forward as I’ll start between the sticks. Sweeper Keeper
- I was less than impressed with our options in goal upon joining the club in early January. Despite keeping an eye out for an experienced keeper capable of commanding the area, I was unable to settle on a potential signing between the sticks. Gustav Lindström will get the starting nod in goal for the first half of the season before I look to reevaluate the position in the summer window. Full Backs
- Recently signed Max Petersson and Elise Wetshikoy were brought in to start and provide depth in wide areas respectfully. I have high expectations for Petersson particularly as he offers incredible athletic ability having come out of the IFK Norrköping academy. Felix Rierstam will man the right side of our defense as he appears to be nothing flashy, but very reliable if his preseason performances are to be believed. Central Defenders
- Right off the bat I was able to identify Hugo Anderberg as one of our most talented players in the squad. Well rounded across the board in terms of technical, mental and physical attributes he immediately became one of the first names on the team sheet in the right side of central defense. Finding a left sided partner for Anderberg proved to be a less straightforward endeavor. I settled on a platoon pairing of new signing Jonathan Petersson and loanee Wilgot Rydborg. I had my eye on an experienced left footed central defender, but his wages proved to be too much for the club. Definitely another area to keep an eye on and circle back around to come the summer window. Central Midfielders
- Prior to my arrival, six foot seven inch behemoth of a man Max Wahlman made ninety appearances in midfield throughout his first five seasons for the club. Safe to say I was pleased to see a competent player in central midfield upon my arrival. Despite possessing the attributes suited for a role higher up the pitch, I was confident in my ability to fit Wahlman into our newly developed system. Furthermore, I looked to supplement him in midfield with two additional signings. The first being the permanent transfer of Adam Fägerhag, a competent and reliable left footer capable of slotting right into our starting eleven. Filip Halilovic became the last player to join the club on deadline day following a season long loan agreement with his parent club, IK Sirius. I was quite pleased with the acquisition as Halilovic displayed exceptional creative attributes for the level. Given the need to control the center of the pitch with our desired style of play, I quickly envisioned our added squad depth coming in handy. Inverted Wingers
- Miraculously, I somehow stumbled upon Franjo Ivančić playing in the Swedish non-leagues prior to securing his signature. The miniature magician, standing at only five foot three inches, burst onto the scene in preseason despite often getting lost in the shadows cast by larger players. The young Croatian would slot in on the right side of our front three. Finding a player on the opposing side proved to be a difficult task. Ultimately, I decided to entrust the position to fellow newcomer Elliot Nilsson. The left sided player showed impressive athleticism paired with impressive jumping reach despite a slight frame. With any luck, a deep cross or two aimed toward the back post would find its way to him throughout the year. Advanced Forward
- Now this is where the fun begins. Without further ado, I would like to wish the warmest of welcome to our new number nine, Mattias Lennartsson. Brought in the lead the line, Lennartsson has absolutely no business playing at this level given his attributes. Upon learning of his existence, I signed him faster than the time it takes the babysitter’s boyfriend to disappear once the parents come home. I was over the moon with the possibility of Mattias (first name basis) being the tip of our attacking spear in the season to come. Giddy up! …Season Review… April 2025
- Unfortunately, our season didn’t kick off to the best of starts as we crept to a three- nil defeat to Värmbols in our first game in charge. Not the start I had envisioned, but Värmbols are tough opposition in this league nonetheless. Despite this, we were able to then rip off three wins on the bounce. Eight goals scored with zero conceded is a pretty good return for a newly promoted side if you ask me. May 2025
- Our run of good form continued into the second month of the league season. The next three games saw us score twelve while only chipping three at the back. Upon checking preseason predictions, our schedule to this point has been relatively weak in comparison to other teams at the top end of the division. But, as Sol Campbell once said, “you can only play what's in front of you,” as we look to push on and continue our free scoring ways. We proceed to lose any and all momentum following a draw and defeat in our next two matches. The defeat coming to the hands of top of the table Enskede IK in a game that saw multiple red cards issued to both sides. Fortunately, we still sit near the top of the league table as we tick over into the month of June. June
- Our free flowing attack kicked back into high gear in a topsy-turvy game against upstart United IK that ended in a four-three victory. We proceeded to finish out the month taking a reasonable seven points out of the next available nine. I began to have serious concerns over the state of our defensive structure though as we conceded seven over the course of the month. An ill timed hamstring injury to star man Hugo Anderberg did nothing to ease my concerns. Lucky for us the summer window was just around the corner. July
- This is the month that we hit the proverbial wall. We kicked off the month with another defeat to Värmbols, this time two-nil, before dropping points in two of our next three matches. The only win of the month came following the Värmbols match in an away win at struggling Arameiska-Syrianska courtesy of a goal from the man himself Mattias Lennartsson. The month as a whole saw us score just four goals across four games while allowing five. Hugo Anderberg did return to the starting eleven following his spell out with a hamstring injury. However, we traded one injury for another, losing left sided winger Elliot Nilsson to a sprained ankle for a large chunk of the remaining season. Reinforcements anyone? …Summer Transfer Window (Help?)…
- Center Back - I had a single goal in mind before looking to strengthen the squad heading into the window. Our defense needed help. Central defenders Jonahan Petersson and Wilgot Rydborg have been largely ineffectual to this point. Coming out of the window with a quality left-footed central defender was the sole focus. Fortunately, I had kept an eye on Pontus Johansson since the summer, despite him wanting nothing to do with a lowly club of our stature at the time. Thankfully, desperation to play made him change his mind and Johansson was signed to help fix our defensive woes.
- Goalkeeper - Part of me feels bad for this as Gustav Lindström has been goodish, maybe more good adjacent. He reminds me a lot of Jordan Pickford in that he’s a quality keeper most of the time… but my gosh the guy has a mistake in him. Lindström just doesn’t fill me with the confidence I like to have in keeper between the sticks. So… I dipped into the market once again to at least bring in someone to provide competition for the number one shirt. That player wound up being the unusually short in stature (5 '10") Samet Burgaj. I’ve mentioned this prior, but I normally don’t like keepers of a shorter height due to their usual lack of jumping reach and struggles commanding the area. However, Burgaj possesses strong reflexes and consistency that I am very much hoping to tap into throughout the remainder of the season.
- The new signings proceeded to make an immediate impact as we resumed league play. We snagged nine points in our next three games before once again facing league leaders Enskede. Despite playing exceptionally well, we fell to the league leading side by a scoreline of one-nil. I think we’re unfortunate to come away with nothing in the reverse fixture as we’ve played them exceedingly well in both matches this season. Following the defeat, we were able to bounce back with a three-nil win at Nyköpings BIS as we head into the final four league fixtures. September
- We come into the final month of the campaign with a realistic shot of finishing in second in the league. This would grant us a shot at promotion through the playoff, which is all I can ask for at this stage. Despite still being mathematically eligible to win the title, I think Enskede have all, but locked down the top spot with their impeccable form. Seven points from the first three games of the month saw us enter the final game week needing a win to gain playoff qualification. Fortunately, our destiny rested in our own hands as we played second place Smedby AIS. A win in our final league game would see us achieve the goal we set at the start of the year. Unfortunately, we came out completely flat conceding within the first minute of the game. An equalizer through Mattias Lennartsson thirty minutes later leveled the scoreline, but come full time we couldn’t find a match winner. …League Retrospection…
Our season concluded with Reymersholms finishing in fourth place in the Division 2 Södra Svealand. Despite not ending the year on a high by finishing in the second place playoff position, I still consider the season as a whole to be an overwhelming success. There were several notable improvements made throughout the course of the season and as a manager that is often all I ask to see. We went on to post very solid team statistics as well…
- Second in goals scored (53)
- Second in chances created (90)
- Third in goals conceded (25)
- Third in average possession (54%)
Individual honors can also be credited as well with none other than Mattias Lennartsson leading the division in goals scored with twenty two. Coincidentally his goal tally also set the record for most goals scored by a player in a league season. Surprisingly, full back Felix Rierstam made quite the impression in our debut season notching seven goals and four assists. Deployed at right back throughout the year, Rierstam managed to put away all three of his attempted kicks from the penalty spot.
Additional honors should also be doled out to Franjo Ivančić, the miniature Croatian magician, who started every game on the right contributing to nine goals and five assists. Quick aside as he is so fun to watch in the match engine being able to glide past defenders in spite of a slight frame. Shifting back to defense, Hugo Anderberg was immense at the back. He concluded the year by formulating a strong partnership with summer signing Pontus Johansson. I’m looking forward to seeing their partnership on display for an entire season next year. Unfortunately, we didn’t receive much production from anyone playing in our system’s number ten space. I am going to look to see if maybe the role or player instructions should be tweaked to facilitate better results. …Looking Ahead…
I’m intrigued to see if I can instigate a change out of future player performances in the creative midfield role. However, I am not opposed to dropping the player back into defensive midfield to then share midfield attacking responsibility between the central midfield pair. Usually, I try to steer clear of implementing a (4-3-3) in a majority of saves as I feel it exploits elements of the match engine. There are definitely tactical tweaks I will look to mull over in the offseason as we look to bring in a number of new faces. I’m open to suggestions, so feel free to share any tactical or player recommendations in the comments below. It will be nice heading into the winter months for the first time in a few years not eyeing the job market as well. I’m really excited to see what we can build at Reymersholms. Thanks again as always for the support, see you next time!
submitted by LlamaLlamaTwo
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2023.06.03 15:47 lost_myglasses Made a homepage to match my terminal
2023.06.03 15:20 Jakimcikas First time japan travel report 04.25-05.17
Alrighty, I'll describe my first time travel in japan, what went well, what didn't go well, my overall impression of Japan. We travelled trough quite a few cities, but I'll try to keep it as short as possible as I'm not much of writer. And we've visited quite a few places, so if you'd like more details, comment and I'll go more in-depth :).
A bit about the travelling party. Me(25M) and a work colleague(26M), Lithuanians(Europe) software engineers, reasonably fit and somewhat fluent in english, Omnivores(my colleague is allergic to cheese), our height is around ±185cm.
Tokyo(Shinjuku) -> Osaka -> Nara -> Kyoto -> Onomichi Islands -> Matsuyama -> Hiroshima -> Miyajima -> Kumamoto -> Aso(region) -> Fukuoka -> Nagasaki -> Nagoya -> Takayama -> Magome -> Matsumoto - > Tokyo(Chuo) -> Tokyo(Shibuya) -> Tokyo(Teito) -> Hakone.
I was slightly more conservative with my spending so my expenses are on the cheaper side, my colleague spent quite a bit more, especially on food and booze.
Total amount spent: slightly more than 3k euros in japan + 1.1k euros flights back and forth.
Daily food expenses: 30-40 eur or 5k-7k yen.
Daily food expenses: 3k-4k Daily travel fares(bus, metro), museums and other activities: 1k-3k
Average hotel stay: ~60euro
Food: - Breakfast - usually something from a convenience store. Chicken, power gels, chocolate, melon bread(my favourite), - Lunch - something from a convenience store or a restaurant - Dinner - restaurant usually a ramen place
Museums, castles, shrines, forests, mountains, walks around the city. We did a lot of walking, total around 400km of walking(at leasts that's what google fit shows)
Alright that's a brief summary, now for the more in-depth write up.
My key takeaways
- Japan is a very safe country, I felt safe everywhere, even in the shady parts of Tokyo.
- People are very polite, they'll go out of their way to help you, even if they don't speak english.
- People are very quiet, you won't hear people talking on the phone, or talking loudly in public transport.
- Be polite, if you don't understand or thing that this is not how it should be, don't be rude, just accept it and move on. You are an alien in their country, not the other way around. So please don't ever raise your voice, japanese people are not malicious, they'll try to help you, but they might not understand you.
- If you want to feel appreciated, learn at least the basics on japanese, it's not that hard, and it'll make your life easier. I did it through doulingo, reached unit 14 in a month and that was sufficient to have very simple conversation.
This is it for the TL;DR part. I'll go more in-depth for the rest of the post.
Planning for the trip
We started planning the trip, where we'll go, where we'll stay, what we'll do, expenses, trains, all that you can plan was started to be planned around a month prior to the trip. We created a word doc as our itinerary, that was around 60 pages long. From what I've read on this page about you can't plan everything. Well I believe we did, we might've even over planned :D.
So we booked the following hotels: - Tokyo - Apa Hotel Higashi Shinjuku Kabukicho Tower(04.25-04.26) - Osaka - APA Hotel Namba Kita Shinsaibashi Ekimae(04.26-04.30) - Onomichi island - TOMARIGI Hostel(04.30-05.01) - Matsuyama - Hotel Patio Dogo(05.01-05.02) - Hiroshima - Wholeearth Ryokan Hiroshima(05.02-05.04) - Kumamoto - Hotel Wing International Select Kumamoto(05.04-05.08) - Nagoya - Sotetsu Fresa Inn Nagoya Shinkansenguchi(05.08-05.10) - Magoame - Magomechaya(05.10-05.11) - Matsumoto - Hotel M Matsumoto(05.11-05.12) - Tokyo - APA Hotel Ginza Kyobashi Tokyo Station Yaesu South Gate(05.14-05.17)
Extra things we bought in advance: - Water proof bags - Hiking boots and socks - Bigger backpacks - JP Rail pass, we booked the trains in advance, but honestly that wasn't necessary even during golden week - Bandages for foot blisters, medicine(for headaches, motion sickness, diarrhoea). - Ubigi eSim internet(10GB was plenty for me throughout the trip) - Sun screen(did not use and got sunburned to a point where I was shinning red) - Portable battery
We arrived at the Haneda aiport, exchanged some cash to yen(was at a better course than locally), printed out our JR passes(IMPORTANT TO DO SO HERE, only major stations let you print it out
) and went to the metro. We took the train to Shinjuku, and walked to our hotel to check-in. We were quite tired, bought some chicken from lawson and went to explore a few places, a few drinks in golden gai district and ramen in a nearby place. Eventually we ended up at rock bar mother. Really cool place, for each drink you can request 2 songs to be played. After that back to hotel, visit the top floor onsen and sleep
Got up early, travelled to osaka. Left our luggage in the hotel, we were too early for a check in. We went to see Osaka castle(quite beautiful), tried takoyaki there. More city exploring, then we went check-in. After that we went to see the Umeda Sky Building in the evening(we bought the ticket in advance) very beautiful, it was very clear and beautiful. Got back to the city, got some ramen, went to the hotel and sleep.
Went to USJ, bought tickets(basic, no express stuff) in advance. We went there 30minutes before opening, and there was already a huge line. We went to Nintendo first, the zone looked very nice, but ride it'd say was okay'ish for me. After that the dinosaur rides, minion land, grabbed chinese food for lunch, went to the harry potter zone, at this point the lines got quite long around 1h to 1h 30min of wait time. After that we went to see Water world where they were doing a play, was really awesome, I'd say a must see even if you don't understand Japanese, the acting is very good. After that we went to Osaka aquarium(no lines, thank god), it was beautiful, cute chonks and other sea creatures.
Trip to Kyoto from Osaka. We went early by metro, to see the bamboo forest(7:40'ish), beautiful, few people. Walked around the park then climbed the mount a fed the monkeys(50 yen for a bag of fruits or nuts), very cute, tried petting the hand of one, didn't go well got an aggressive show of teeth. After that we visited Ryoanji temple, went to nishi market, we we're running a bit late so we took a taxi to Kiyomizudera, we saw the geish district on our way to there, looked interesting. After the temple we went to a bar and got back to Osaka and then after a bowl of ramen to our hotel.
We went to Nara, took this hiking track
saw the deer, bought some food, did the whole bow thing then fed them. One thing to keep in mind is to crumble the cookie and give it in small pieces, otherwise you'll run out of food to give quickly. They might be very "assertive" and try to take it from you, don't be afraid, just stick your empty arm out to get some distance and that's it . They're not gonna bite you. After that we went to see the Todaiji temple, it was beautiful, the buddha statue was huge. Got back to Osaka, got some ramen, went to the hotel, scheduled to send our luggage to our next hotel and went to sleep.
Got up early, went to Onomichi, rented some bikes and began our cycling journey through the islands. A lot of cool bridges, very beautiful nature. We cycled to north Omishima port, where we transfered to rabbit island pet and fed the rabbits, got back and cycled to our ryokan and straight to sleeping.
More cycling, more cool bridges, more beautiful nature. We arrived at Imabari, returned our bikes and took the train to Matsuyama. We ate some stree food, relaxed in the open hot springs for feet. Walked around and went to sleep. To be honest I'd say this was the favorite city of the whole trip for me. I liked the vibe, the people, the food, the nature, the onsen, the layout, the architecture. In general, beautiful city.
Early in the morning visited a public onsen nearby, then went to see the Matsuyama castle, it was beautiful, tried the orange juice there, it was really good, got back to our hotels, got some dango. Packed our stuff, got a taxi and went to the port and took the ferry to Hiroshima. Checked in the ryokan. Took a train to Hiroshima city center, visited the castle and then the nuclear museum. Get the english audio for best experience. It took me around 2hours to walk through everything, read it and take it in. It was very nerve racking, but I'd say a must see. After that we went out to eat some Okonomiyaki, it was delicious, then back to the ryokan and sleep.
Went to Miyajima island first by train then transfer by ferry. It was very beautiful, the mountain hike was also fun, the view on top was amazing. When we came down from the mountain there was a low tide, so we could go near the Itsukushima shrine. Got back to Hiroshima, went to the city center for a couple of beers, got back to Ryokan and went to sleep.
First day of the Golden week, wouldn't say that I've noticed anything different, maybe because we were travelling to the far south of Japan - Kumamoto. This is one of those cities that I also enjoyed more than the big common ones, it looked very nice, had a beautiful castle, was not crowded as Hiroshima, Osaka or Tokyo. We rented out bikes, cycled to Honmoji park(the place near Honmoji park is god damn maze, keep you google maps always open or you will get lost) found a place to eat, visited Lafcadio Hearn House and went to our hotel and then to sleep.
We rentend a car and went to Aso, highly recommend renting a car here, since the public transport is not that good. The drive was very nice, we went to see active volcano crater, luckily it was not erupting, so we were allowed to get close. Then we went around and climbed the other inactive mountain caps. Climbing that was one of the most fun hikes I've had. It was very windy, you could barely see past 5 meters anywhere, because of the fog. There was no smell of sulfur, so it was safe. We visited Mt. Nakadake, Mt. Takadake, overall the place looked like Mordor, the vibes, the weather everything. After that we visited Ayugaeno Falls, the ravines and everything was just majectic. After that we got back to Kumamoto, gave back the car and went somewhere to eat. Car rental cost around ~7k yen in total. So I'd say a good price. After eating, we went to our hotel and then to sleep.
We went to Fukuoka, by train, walked around the city, visited Tochoji temple, Fukuoka castle ruins, Ohori park and explored the huge ravine type shopping mall. Went to the science museum(big mistake, it's for kids...). After that we tried Ichiran ramen(originated in Fukuoka so we thought it be better). Was the same as everywhere else. It was rainy so we got back pretty early to our hotel and went to sleep.
We went to Nagasaki, by train, visited the atomic bomb museum, it was very interesting, just as good as the one in Hiroshima. We took a boat ride to see Gunkanjima, though we couldn't get on the island, because of the weather, it was still very interesting to see and hear the history of the island. Explored the Dutch district, walked around the shops, tried some whale meat. It was raining the whole day, so we also got back quite early and went to sleep.
We got up early and went got straight to the train station, and caught the train to Nagoya. The longest train ride by far. We arrived at Nagoya, checked in our hotel, went to the city center, visited the castle, it was very beautiful, then we wanted to explore the abandoned tunnel near Aichi. Apparently it was closed, we decided we're going to enter through the exit, like rascals, but apparently after we circled around there was a police officer that was guarding traffic through the bridge and wouldn't let us through. So our trip ended there. After comming back to Nagoya we visited the sky scrapper, it had interesting installations on the windows. We had our stay got back to hotel and went to sleep.
We went to Takayama, by train, one of the most scenic train rides so far. We strolled around the city center, visited the early morning market, bought some souvenirs, tried some white strawberries, mushroom tee and other local cuisine. Visited Takayama Showa Museum, which was 10/10. You could touch almost everything, the museum gave a great vibe, it was like you were in a house of a family that lived there. There was also an old nintendo with mario kart that you could play, put on a old yukata and take photos. Play pachinko(no money needed), watch an old-school movie. We visited a few sake tasting places, I've found a few flavours that I liked. After that back to Nagoya, eat ramen and sleep.
We sent out our luggage to Matsumoto, caught a train to Nagiso and then hiked the Nakasendo trail to Tsumago and then Magome where we checked in and stayed at the local ryokan. The hike was very nice and relaxing one of the easier hikes I've had, the places we saw we're quite old and beautiful. At ryokan we met people one American and one from Germany, they had a guitar so we chatted a bit, played the guitar and had a few beers. The dinner at ryokan was amazing, looked very traditional Japanese dinner. Was also very tasty, would definitely recommend this place. After that we went to sleep.
Got up early and took a bus to Nakatsugawa Eki-mae station where we travelled to Matsumoto. We left our bags and went to the RubyKaigi conference. Overall good conference, I've learned somethings, but most importantly I've had bit of time to rest and catch up on some sleep, since we weren't exploring new cities. So overall the following 3 days were wake up -> breakfast -> conference -> lunch -> conference -> drinks -> dinner -> sleep.
Slept in, had breakfast and travelled to Tokyo by train. Left our luggage at the hotel and moved on to explore the Chou region. Walked around the Ginza, Imperial palace, Yasukuni shrine and went to check in. After that it was getting dark, so travelled to Akihabara to experience the anime night life, was quite bright and interesting. Though the amount of requests to visit a maid cafe was too damn high. If your planning to buy a PS5, a new GPU or Nintendo switch, this could be the place, I saw PS5 with two controllers for 60k yen, with a 10% tax refund that is around 370 euros. After some exploration, got back to our hotel and went to sleep.
This was our Hakone day trip, we bought the 3 day pass for it, so we could use the train, bus, ropeway and boat. Was worth it, even for one day. We climbed Mt. Kintoki, thankfully the weather was great and we could see Fuji. The climb was very nice, the view was amazing, the weather was great, no bears to be seen. After climbing down, we played some golf that was near there. Travelled back to the station were we used the rope-way to get around the mountains, the view was just majestic, we saw the sulfur pits, the stench was, well strong to say the least, but overall enjoyed the experience. We didn't make it time to the boat, so we had to travel back by bus, which wasn't so bad, since the scenery was amazing.
Explored more Tokyo, so we went to Teito district, went to the Ueno zoo, National science museum. After that we went to Kaminarimon gate, Asakusa shrine and moved to Shibuya next. There we went to the Yoyogi park, Meiji Jingu shrine, paid our respects to Hachiko statue. The last activity was to visit TeamLabs Planets, which were amazing, one most interesting experiences, not gonna spoil any details, overall great experience, would do it again. As it was getting late we got back to Shibuya, walked around more, had a drink and went back to our hotel.
Last day in Japan was spent buying souvenirs, snacks and other stuff to bring back home. Packing our luggage, to accommodate for the extras, getting to Haneda airport and back to Lithuania.
I'm very happy I had the opportunity to go on such a trip, I enjoyed it a lot even though, I'm quite the couch potato so 3 weeks is a bit much for me, but nonetheless, wouldn't change a thing.
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2023.06.03 14:57 drinkermoth Gap between bath and all panelling too big for resealing?
Please could I have some advce?
I have noticed a gap in the sealant of my plastic bathtub and am preparing to reseal it. The gap is only on the righthand side of the taps. The gap gets wider when I'm in a full bath.
I popped the side panels off and raised the right leg near the taps about 1.5mm (see the picture with the original height marked in red pen)
I have attached pics of the gap after raising the leg with and without a full bat (plus person). I belive the gap is improved.
Is this a sufficient fix or is the gap still too big for me to be sealing over?
Am I safe to just raise 1 leg like this or should I be doing something else?
Any advice or comments are appreciated. I am a novice DIYer with a few home repairs under my belt but a lot to learn. Ive never resealed anything or worked with baths before.
The bathroom is about 2-3 years old, we had it put in but the installers were about a 6.5/10.
Location: North East, United Kingdom. House is about 1930s constructon.
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2023.06.03 14:49 GoodSilhouette Recs and books on native landscaping (SE USA / GA)
Specifically what would be some beautiful native trees and flowers to serve as an accent in front of a home? Average sunlight, clay leaning soil
Some of my family near the ATL area want to landscape their home and I want to give them some recommendations.
They had some exotic tropical tree as an accent showpiece I cant remember the name of that perished in last year's cold as well as miscellaneous standard home depot flowers.
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