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Audio Drama/Fiction/RPG Debuts - October 2020

2020.10.31 23:01 thecambridgegeek Audio Drama/Fiction/RPG Debuts - October 2020

I've got what I think is a mostly exhaustive list of the new audio drama series that came out in October, which may be of interest to those looking for new shows. See below. Anyone want to tell me any I've missed, and I'll update it? (Note, "new" here means that the Ep1 of the RSS feed was released, or a previously non-fiction feed started producing fiction.) Listened to any of them that you would recommend?
Previous months are available here:
And the ongoing updates (just in case you don't want to wait for the end of the month) are available here:
And I do a weekly podcast collecting a few trailers here:

10/1: Between Acts (Dramatised - Anthology)
Synopsis: Between Acts is an immersive audio theater podcast experience. Each biweekly episode sets the stage for your imagination to freely venture through the works of newfound playwrights—from dramas to comedies and everything in-between. Subscribe now, so not to miss a single spellbinding performance.
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10/1: First Action Bureau (Dramatised - Science fiction)
Synopsis: Spy-fi audio drama starring Genevieve Gaunt, Sacha Dhawan, Paterson Joseph and Nicola Walker. From the worlds of Thunderbirds creator Gerry Anderson. Series Summary: The First Action Bureau exists to protect the Earth - near-utopian by 2068 - from criminal elements before they get the chance to act. Using decades of ‘big data’ and globally connected quantum artificial intelligence, the Bureau is able to predict criminal activity before it occurs. Nero Jones may be the best agent the Bureau has, but something strange is going on. Headaches and bizarre dreams are troubling this deadly assassin, and as her missions continue it becomes increasingly clear that all is not well... not just with her, but with the Bureau itself. But where do the lies end? And where does the truth begin? Join the Bureau and get extra content: It has been created and written by Jamie Anderson and Nicholas Briggs, and has been directed by Nicholas Briggs, and is being produced and distributed by Anderson Entertainment. Series one is being released as an audio drama podcast consisting of 10x10’ episodes, hosted and supported by the team at Captivate. First Action Bureau was developed and recorded remotely during the COVID-19 lockdown in 2020 Nero Jones - Genevieve Gaunt Benjamin Saal - Sacha Dhawan Zero One - Paterson Joseph Charlize Wilkin - Nicola Walker Eddie Hunter - Wayne Forester Angus Reed - Richard James Created and written by Jamie Anderson and Nicholas Briggs Directed by Nicholas Briggs Produced by Jamie Anderson Sound design by Iain Meadows Music by Joe Kraemer Graphic design by Marcus Stamps Recording by Benji Clifford Distributed by Anderson Entertainment Ltd.
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10/1: Grimwell County (Dramatised - Horror)
Synopsis: A western horror serial set deep in the wicked heart of Texas. GRIMWELL COUNTY follows the adventures of Deacon Langley and the gunslinger, Church McMillan, as they encounter the nightmares of the dark Texan frontiers.
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10/1: Monstica (Dramatised - Erotica)
Synopsis: Monstica is an LGBT anthology monster erotica fiction podcast.
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10/1: Monstrous Agonies (Dramatised - Urban fantasy)
Synopsis: From werewolves in the doghouse to new ghouls at work, there's no problem too strange for this weekly advice segment, from the UK's only dedicated radio service for the creature community.
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10/1: My Parallel Life (Dramatised - Urban fantasy)
Synopsis: Daniel Jones' perfect life just took a sharp turn for the worse. His parents separated, he has to move to an apartment in the city and go to a PUBLIC school (ugh!) where everyone is a TOTAL SLACKER and no one cares about his high GPA and PRESTIGIOUS WRITING AWARDS, and worst of all, his mom just up and left the country. Daniel is working up a plan to make his life more acceptable, when he discovers a strange door... A door that takes him to a parallel life where his parents hadn't separated. Episode One is premiering October 1st. My Parallel Life was created by Vera Greentea and Jasmine Brown, and co-produced with Mike Umile. Subscribe for an episode every Thursday.
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10/1: Running Sentences (Fiction - Anthology)
Synopsis: An audio story podcast that brings narrated stories to life. The stories are all written and narrated by the podcast creator.
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10/1: The Martian Broadcast (Dramatised - Historical)
Synopsis: In 1938, a group of talented artists known as The Mercury Theatre on the Air, led by Orson Welles, created a spectacle that changed the course of broadcast history forever by terrifying a nation with a staged alien invasion. This is the story of how the infamous War of the Worlds radio drama came to be and how it almost never was...
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10/1: The Scriptcast (Dramatised - Anthology)
Synopsis: A podcast that transforms unproduced film and television scripts into radio plays.
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10/1: The Way We Haunt Now (Dramatised - Horror)
Synopsis: Eulalie Elizabeth Reed is haunted by lots of things. Paths not taken. Failed relationships. Mistakes. Fears. Hopes. But she’s never been properly haunted before. That’s about to change. The Way We Haunt Now is a lighthearted horror audio drama about female friendships, found family, and fighting the narratives that try to define us––even in the afterlife. Oh, and ghosts. Did we mention ghosts?
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10/1: The Woes of Whitby (Dramatised - Horror)
Synopsis: Whitby. The late 19th century. A thriving coastal town in North Yorkshire, England. Full of bustling streets, gothic spires, sweeping ocean views... and evil lurking in the shadows. When the young and outgoing Lucy Westenra suddenly falls mysteriously ill, those around her are thrown into a dangerous conflict in an attempt to protect her. To protect her from what, or whom, they don't even know.
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10/2: Aquinas College Theatre (Dramatised - Adaptation)
Synopsis: Content and Updates from Aquinas College Theatre in Grand Rapids, MI.
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10/2: Avistrum Academy of Sorcery (RPG - Fantasy)
Synopsis: Avistrum Academy of Sorcery is the premier school of witchcraft and wizardry in North America. On this feed, you'll be able to subscribe for updates to the audio adventures in our series, Tales from Avistrum. We hope you'll join us to experience the magical world!
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10/2: Keepers of Alteria (Dramatised - Fantasy)
Synopsis: This is my journey to become one of the Keepers of Alteria -- a magical land accessible through a gate in the middle of the ocean -- after my predecessor vanished in what we suspect is an attempt to open the gate and infiltrate Alteria.
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10/2: Little Montgomery (Dramatised - Slice of life)
Synopsis: A narrative scripted series from New City Players. Megan and Kimmy are fourteen-years-old, best friends, and currently planning to commit grand larceny against country music star Rick Montgomery at his concert tonight. As they put their plan into play, songs will sung, secrets will be revealed, and teenage girls will find out how difficult it is to exact revenge.
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10/3: Dick Meteor (Dramatised - Comedy)
Synopsis: Calling all mystery fans. Calling all speculative fiction fans. Dick Meteor is on the air! Join us every Saturday for new adventures from Deep Space Nine 3/4!
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10/3: The Bellow of Brittle Stars (Fiction - Science fiction)
Synopsis: A group of students are given the opportunity to study and explore a giant fossil found floating in the asteroid belt. A story about the awkwardness of meeting new people.
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10/4: Digital Radio Series (Dramatised - Anthology)
Synopsis: Performed by local actors, these audio plays are a nod to the days when families would gather around a radio for entertainment. During COVID-19, we're bringing you a new way to safely spend time together that doesn't include staring at your screen.

10/4: I Love Marsha (Dramatised - Comedy)
Synopsis: “I Love Marsha” - A weekly, fictional comedy. Meet Matt and Marsha Wilson, a middle aged, married couple who are from opposite sides of the US, and their crazy friends and family! Laugh along as each episode proves love and laughter can bridge the differences between Pasadena, California and Waldo, Arkansas, and maybe anywhere else.
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10/4: Lem 'N' Ginge: The Princess of Kakos (Dramatised - Comedy)
Synopsis: Two down-and-out actresses are on the hunt for some stage work. Failing that, they’ll take up a lucrative quest to find the local princess’ stolen voice. In this chaotic tale, Lem N Ginge encounter queer frogs, woke baes, and their first actual deadline.
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10/4: The City in the City in the City (Dramatised - Urban fantasy)
Synopsis: Two women, each marked by loss and linked together by a strange twist of fate, journey to an ancient city—a storied city without borders—in search of answers and escape. But what they discover there will change their lives in ways neither of them could expect. Two actors (Eboni Booth and Mary Cavett) play more than thirty characters on this wild ride through a city of doubles, monastic cheese, octogenarian vocalists, dizzying bureaucracy, ancient graves, and lives more expansive and singular and wondrous than found even in myths and legends.
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10/4: The HeatWalker Radio Hour (Fiction - Historical)
Synopsis: Capitalism. Racism. Masculinity. America. HeatWalker Productions Presents: The HeatWalker Radio Hour! Brought to you by Bruhmhill Cigarettes and Mammy's Malt Liquor. Join our hosts Johnny Sandtown and Doctor Robert Price as they regale you with another story from the life and times of famed novelist, cunning liquor magnate and American Legend: Tristan Milne.
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10/5: Dracula: A Radio Play (Dramatised - Adaptation)
Synopsis: A new adaption that attempts to counteract a century of pop culture distortion and adaptation decay to return to the fear and menace of the original Bram Stoker classic.
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10/5: Good Neighbors (RPG - Urban fantasy)
Synopsis: No one remembers the leeches in the coffee. No one sees the writing on the wall. No one knows that every cold spot, every bump in the night was a sign. Strange things happen every day in Louisiana, but they disappear just as quickly as they come. Everyone jokes about the gators in the sewers, but when the monsters come to Constance, you won’t need a professional - just a few Good Neighbors. Join Matt, Sera, Anna, and Soren at the table, and let’s play Monster of the Week!
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10/5: Grimoire Nights (Fiction - Horror)
Synopsis: Grimoire Nights is an occult and historical horror fiction podcast written and produced by Kay Halloran. Each original, feature-length, dramatized story draws listeners into a chilling glimpse of the darkest and most obscure recesses of history.
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10/5: Henpire (Dramatised - Comedy)
Synopsis: 3 women set out to create a women’s “media empire” and in doing so realise that their very different lives may just be the key to their success. Navigating themes of motherhood and other hood, sexuality, difference, sex and friendship, Henpire is a fast paced, irreverent comedy podcast written by Samantha Grierson Schwarz, an autistic and gay writer.
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10/5: Middle East Centre Stage (Dramatised - Anthology)
Synopsis: GOLDEN THREAD PRODUCTIONS is the first American theatre company devoted to plays from or about the Middle East. For 25 years, Golden Thread has created artistic excellence with plays that defy stereotypes, and engage diverse communities. Initiated as a response to the theatre closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Middle East Center Stage is Golden Thread's podcast series of audio plays. We are thrilled by the opportunity to reach audiences across the globe through this medium.
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10/6: Anton Pavlovich's Garden Club (Dramatised - Adaptation)
Synopsis: Anton Pavlovich’s Garden Club is our attempt to re-radicalize this Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard. Using the backdrop of a podcast, we are exploring The Cherry Orchard act by act, bringing the specificity of Chekhov’s writing into the 21st century, complete with the anxieties and hopes of our day. Rather than holding up Chekhov’s work on an untouchable pedestal, we are treating it with irreverence, digging as deep into the play as possible, in order to rip it apart and put it back together again.
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10/6: Children of the Stones (Dramatised - Horror)
Synopsis: These Stones can change people and they’re calling to you. Are you scared yet? Do you feel the shiver? Smash your speakers. Destroy your headphones. Whatever you do, don’t listen… The world depends on it.
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10/6: Circles (Dramatised - Horror)
Synopsis: Something is coming. If you want to survive, you must remember this: Stay safe. Stay inside your circle. A new four-part audio horror series. Created by Brendon Connelly. Co-written by James Field and James MacDonald. Starring Tal Minear, Beth Eyre, Sarah Pitard, Bryce Cooke and Tom Alexander. Directed and Produced by Jack Bowman. Produced in association with AudioMarvels®.
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10/6: Out of Place (Fiction - Urban fantasy)
Synopsis: Andrew Moss loved his anthropology job, until mysterious artifacts from a Mr. Havisham started arriving in brown paper bags. The artifacts are... Wrong.
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10/6: Propaganda! (Dramatised - Musical)
Synopsis: Rookie doesn't know much about his family business--but then again neither does the American Public. Nevertheless, he is tasked with suddenly leading the secret government agency in charge of covering up all political scandals, and his first assignment is the biggest scandal since watergate! With a clever idea, Rookie must come into his own and fight off the evil Agent X in order to save the bureau and protect the country from ruin! With a score teeming with energetic pop and jazzy elements, brought to life by a Tony Award winning - star studded cast, Propaganda the Podcast Musical is the antidote we need now.
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10/6: Roll for Blank (RPG - Urban fantasy)
Synopsis: A weekly, serialized, role-playing podcast featuring an original campaign written and DM'd by Nate Ragolia, and played by Rex Roberts, Greg Corbin, Shannon Paige, Zamantha Joeh, Jason Ling, Eric Palencia, and Cory Palencia.
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10/6: Seeds (Dramatised - Historical)
Synopsis: Seeds, by No Stone Theatre, is a bold new podcast series inspired by the incredible true story of the world’s first seed bank and how the men and women who worked there protected the future of biodiversity through the worst siege of World War II.
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10/7: Ella Oleander Mysteries (Dramatised - Crime/Mystery)
Synopsis: Join Ella Oleander as she solves murders in this brand new fictional murder mystery podcast.
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10/7: Wardcliff Academy (Fiction - Urban fantasy)
Synopsis: Welcome to the Wardcliff Academy, a school for people with very special abilities. Thomas Kane is one of these people, but his abilities are, shall we say, an anomaly. Welcome to the fully dramatized reading of The Wardcliff Academy, a story written by Landon Powers.
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10/8: Bobbo Supreme (Dramatised - Comedy)
Synopsis: President Bobbo Supreme is an infantile, narcissistic lounge singer, game show hosting, narcoleptic racist; an unhinged id running for reelection and unwilling to cede power if he loses. The billionaire recording artist and leader of the free world is in the final push of his re-election campaign. Tortured by periodic dreams that range from glorious fantasies of his prowess as an athlete to nightmares of utter failure, President Supreme struggles to maintain a grip on reality. As the Election Day gets closer, chaos erupts throughout the country as right wing militias, aligned with the White House, clash with protestors.
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10/8: Crypt I.D. (Fiction - Urban fantasy)
Synopsis: In this audio drama, we see a seemingly normal woman as she is thrown headlong into the strange occurrences that most of the world is blind to.
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10/8: Dear Liisphyra (Dramatised - Fantasy)
Synopsis: Broadcast live from the Towering Forest in the magical world of Grevelon, Dear Liisphyra is an advice radio show hosted by Liisphyra Lyndambar, where she gives advice to fantastical creatures with even more fantastical problems!
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10/8: Ghost Light Dice (RPG - Fantasy)
Synopsis: Welcome to Ghost Light Dice, where thespians meet TTRPGs! While times may get dark, our light is always on and all are welcome at our table. From 5e to Pathfinder, homebrew to module--there's always something on our virtual stage! So pull up a chair, crack open a cold one, and let's get rollin'!
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10/8: Make It Up As We Go (Dramatised - Slice of life)
Synopsis: Make It Up As We Go follows the story of an aspiring young songwriter, played by Scarlett Burke, and her pursuits to make a name for herself in the music industry. Encountering a number of characters along the way, including legendary Nashville producer Van Tyler (played by Billy Bob Thornton), and the voice of country radio, Bobby Bones (playing himself). Make It Up As We Go unravels Charlotte’s own personal journey navigating the writer rooms of Nashville, which is where the stories are told, songs are born, and in turn - finding her own voice along the way.
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10/8: Tess and the Pest (Dramatised - Historical)
Synopsis: Tess and the Pest is a three-act comedic play based on the true story of Esther Simpson’s friendship with Nobel prize-winning physicist Leo Szilard. Tess - as her friends call her - arrives in London in the mid-1930s to join the Academic Assistance Council, which is in dire need of a competent hand. As the Nazis are purging Germany for dissenters and Jews, Tess also has to deal with the resistance of pre-war Britain to welcome the refugees - personified in the play by the proprietor of The Daily Mail Viscount Rothermere through his personal private secretary William Outhwaite.
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10/8: The Terrible Misadventures of Trixie and Gorgon (Dramatised - Children)
Synopsis: Welcome friend, to a dark tale for a dark time. The story of a young witch, a strange goblin, a demon-hunter with a thirst for vengeance, and the fateful Halloween night when one baby will unite them all. Welcome, to the Terrible Misadventures of Trixie and Gorgon.
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10/9: Lifeline On The Air (Fiction - Anthology)
Synopsis: Chicago’s Lifeline Theatre is known for telling Big Stories Up Close! Lifeline explores, interprets, and reimagines books and other literary works to create stories that move us beyond the margins of our own lives. With our partner Sound Concept Media, we present our new podcast, Lifeline On the Air! A new way to bring our one-of-a-kind stories even closer…right into your headphones!
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10/9: Venom & Vulnerability (Dramatised - Urban fantasy)
Synopsis: Venom & Vulnerability is a fantasy advicecast where Ella and Eustacia, two new friends and housemates, talk about How To Person in a fictional magical multiverse of quirky, creepy, and cool imaginary beings. The world is fiction, but the advice aims to be genuinely helpful.
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10/10: Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies! (RPG - Fantasy)
Synopsis: Rocks fall everyone dies is a new homebrew 5th edition D&D actual play podcast, featuring teachers and students escaping the humdrum of quarantine into a twisted dark fantasy.
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10/10: The Kaleidoscope Project (Dramatised - Science fiction)
Synopsis: The Kaleidoscope Project is an original audio drama that takes a deep dive into the world of mental illness. In this universe, individuals with mental illnesses have special powers or “Gifts” that separate them from the rest of the world. The government fears and labels these people, choosing to separate them from the rest of society. Over the years, a group of “Gifted” friends slowly drift apart, only to be brought back together when disaster strikes.
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10/10: Unknown (Dramatised - Slice of life)
Synopsis: Unknown is a new verbatim audio performance written for radio, dramatising the story of one young person's journey from an abusive childhood to a life of homelessness on the streets of Bath - one of the most affluent cities in the UK.

10/11: Day Dream: A Radio Drama (Dramatised - Historical)
Synopsis: Day Dream is an audio drama inspired by the life of jazz artist and composer Billy Strayhorn. It contrasts Billy’s journey, looking back on his life during a radio interview, with the journey of Andre, an aspiring jazz vocalist struggling to find his voice in today’s world. Day Dream is set in two time periods: Billy in 1965, and Andre in modern day. The 1965 time period looks at the musical genius, whom world renowned artist Duke Ellington called his “writing and arranging companion”, and the struggle to receive credit for many of his works. The modern day period explores a young man discovering his connection and understanding to music through the legacy of Billy Strayhorn.
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10/11: The Sulphuric Secrets (Dramatised - Horror)
Synopsis: Barely clinging to life, a flayed man lies in a copper basement beneath a cornfield of a forgotten country in the 1850s. Why? From this weird and disturbing mystery begins the story of The Sulphuric Secrets, which spans the globe, and hundreds of years. This fictitious story entwines the unimaginable with historical events, which will delight occult and horror aficionados alike.
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10/12: Finding Satan (Dramatised - Horror)
Synopsis: Good Omens meets The Black Tapes in Finding Satan, a Texas Gothic docudrama about a young woman searching for evil; she wants to see it, touch it, prove that it’s real. She wants to find the source of all evil and look Him in the face.
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10/12: Knights of Degradation (RPG - Fantasy)
Synopsis: A Dungeons and Dragons audio adventure! Knights of Degradation takes a table top role playing game and combines it with high quality music, sound effects, and voice overs to create a unique audio drama experience. We also have bi-weekly discussions about various topics, including our own personal experiences with Dungeons and Dragons and how D&D culture has changed over the years.
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10/12: The Minister of Chance (Dramatised - Fantasy)
Synopsis: Epic Fantasy audio movie series starring Jenny Agutter, Jed Brophy, Lauren Crace, Paul Darrow, Philip Glenister, Sylvester McCoy, Paul McGann, Julian Wadham, and more.
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10/13: Wayward Guide for the Untrained Eye (Dramatised - Comedy)
Synopsis: Wayward Guide is a fictional investigative podcast about the sordid world of local politics, backroom dealings, and werewolves. When an alluring corporate corruption story falls unexpectedly into their laps, twin podcasting-team Artemis and Paul Schue-Horyn are given the chance to prove themselves as top hosts at the American Podcasting Network. But opportunity soon leads to tragedy as the eccentric and divided locals they are interviewing in the small California mining town of Connor Creek start dropping like flies. With the threads of their investigation quickly becoming tangled and rumors of a bloodthirsty werewolf on the loose, the Schue-Horyn twins need to decide who to trust and the price they’re willing to pay for a juicy story.
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10/13: We Know None (Dramatised - Horror)
Synopsis: Gwen Thomas' girlfriend, Frankie, disappeared two weeks ago. Following her trail, will Gwen find Frankie, or is she really gone?
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10/14: Absolutely No Adventures (Dramatised - Fantasy)
Synopsis: Absolutely No Adventures is a fantasy (un)adventure podcast that follows Sig, the owner of Signature Eats bakery, as he aggressively avoids becoming embroiled in any daring quests or chosen one shenanigans even though the universe really seems to want him to do just that. Follow Sig as he chills with his friends and stays far, far away from the slightest whiff of adventure. And bakes. He also bakes.
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10/14: Beyond the Veil (Dramatised - Urban fantasy)
Synopsis: Two not-friends, an RV, and a magical Canadian road trip. Tennyson and Alder had known each other about six months when Alder's mysterious fae bosses asked them to set out across the country in an old RV, solving people's magical problems. Too bad neither of them asked the important questions. Too bad their secrets might be hazardous to their health.
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10/14: Cupid's Arrow (Dramatised - Slice of life)
Synopsis: The year is 2003. Bruce O'Dea, a sixteen-year-old, gay Junior who is still in the closet, struggles to accept his identity as his religious-toting parents push to enroll him, without warning, in an out-of-state Christian Science boarding school for the upcoming winter quarter.
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10/14: The Hauntings of Elgin Barrett (Fiction - Horror)
Synopsis: An ancient head starts to speak... A spirit pleads to be laid to rest... An immortal stalks the corridors of power... Just a few of the horrors that lurk in The Hauntings of Elgin Barrett, an audiofiction podcast, featuring nine gripping new stories for anyone with a taste for the strange, the spooky and the supernatural. From a derelict Welsh hill farm to an East Devon mausoleum; from a converted pub in London’s East End to the courtyard of a Cambridge college, these are tales which burrow deep into the psyche of an unquiet nation.
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10/14: Untold Virginia (Dramatised - Urban fantasy)
Synopsis: Untold Virginia is the story of a years-long relationship on the brink of collapse. Friends since college, Elizabeth and Ruth are starting a podcast. Their interest in local history entangles them with a mysterious, underground force that neither can explain, but only one of them wants to try to. Is this just what happens when two friends work together? Or is something inserting itself into Elizabeth and Ruth’s relationship, threatening both of their lives in the process?
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10/15: This Gun in My Hand (Dramatised - Comedy)
Synopsis: Like an old time radio show, except it's a new time podcast and no radios have been harmed by it yet.
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10/15: This is Rage (Dramatised - Thriller)
Synopsis: THIS IS RAGE is the story of what happens when you shine a light on the system that allows the rich to become the super-rich and the super-rich to get their own zip codes. As you can imagine, it isn’t pretty . . . but it does make for great drama. We have CEOs being kidnapped, Investors dealing unscrupulously, coders turning criminal, counsels breaching confidences, the public spinning conspiracies, and a has-been rediscovering his mojo. We even have a little romance. At the center of all of this are two people. Kimo Balthazer was once the biggest radio shock-jock in the land. But a series of spectacular flame-outs has left him sleeping on a bench in Golden Gate Park trying to salvage any semblance of his career broadcasting on the Internet with a laptop and a $10 microphone from Best Buy. Sylvia Normandy is a top executive at EnvisionInk, one of Silicon Valley’s most glittering jewels. Sylvia was once a public defender and she’s still committed to doing the right thing. But when Sylvia sees her company under siege on multiple fronts, she realizes she needs to bend some rules. And that means giving the story of a lifetime to a certain shock-jock she swore she’d never set eyes on again You see, Sylvia and Kimo have a history. A tortuous history. But that’s nothing compared to the future they’re about to create.
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10/16: Cashmere and Friends (Dramatised - Erotica)
Synopsis: Erotic Fiction podcast featuring stories from Cashmere and her friends.
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submitted by thecambridgegeek to audiodrama [link] [comments]

2020.10.25 02:16 hennirl IAMA professional author/editor, still editing if you missed it before. Send your stories!

Previous post:
For those that saw this before:
I was able to get through everything that was submitted to me before (if you sent a story and didn’t get a reply, please let me know). If you have a story or the first chapter you’d like some feedback on, please send it to leigh(at)regula(dot)one as a doc(x) attachment.
This time around I’ll edit the first 3,000 words of the first 20 stories received. Otherwise, no changes.
If you have no idea what this is, read on!
Brief history (I've done this before)
A few years back I was the editor-in-chief of Bastion Science Fiction Magazine, which did pretty well as a best-seller! I’ve done a number of these on here before, where I offered to edit the first 5,000 words of a submission. I did one for charity once that raised a few hundred bucks, and that was super cool! Check my previous posts at:
About me
I’ve (mostly) moved from editing in the past couple of years and have focused on my own work. I have a short story coming out in international hardcover print (!!) alongside works by Ramsey Campbell in Flame Tree Publishing’s Strange Lands Short Stories anthology this month. I receive absolutely $0.00 from in terms of royalty (I was paid by word count), so while I get nothing from any additional sales from them, you should check it out anyway!
I voluntarily taught a class on horror in literature as part of the King County Library System in Seattle the past couple of years or so, spoke on a panel at the 2019 Stoker Con in Grand Rapids, and was a volunteer last year for the Horror Writer’s Association working on the Bram Stoker awards as a compiler.
What's in it for me?
I have nothing to promote. No partners. I get nothing from this. You owe me nothing. For transparency, I do have a personal website I call The Semiotic Standard, but I don’t sell or offer anything there (or anywhere else), and really it’s irregularly updated, at best. Don't contact me for paid editing gigs, for ghostwriting, or anything else where there might be some exchange of money/services/goods/views/likes/clicks. Any such requests will be deleted. The only way I edit the works of others is within the confines of these specific posts.
Why am I doing this?
  1. I’m really stressed. Editing helps distract me.
  2. I like doing it. Helping folks like this makes me feel good.
  3. I like this community. I want to see it grow in a positive way.
  4. Karma? Pay it forward, maybe?
What do you get?
I’ll provide line and developmental editing for the first twenty folks that submit me a story/novel chapter, up to 3,000 words in length. I'll give you some perspective as a (former) editor of a semi-pro paid SF magazine, and a current professional author. In addition to marking for grammar and mechanics, I'll tell you what works, what doesn't work, how you might improve your story, and I'll point you to any resources that seem like they could be useful for you, including markets where I think your story might be a good fit.
How will I select the stories?
If more than twenty stories are received (in the past, I've received dozens/hundreds), I will select them at random. I will try to do more than twenty. Actually, in every instance where I've done this before, I usually ended up doing somewhere around 30 or 40. Pretty much until I get tired and busy with other things.
Send your story as a doc(x) attachment to leigh(at)regula(dot)one.
submitted by hennirl to thewritespace [link] [comments]

2020.10.24 19:29 DramaticPatience0 [HIRING] 40 Jobs in ND Hiring Now!

Company Name Title City
BetterHelp Licensed Therapist for Online Counseling Bismarck
Loves Travel Stops & Country Store General Manager In Training Fargo
BetterHelp Licensed Therapist for Online Counseling Mandan
BetterHelp Licensed Therapist for Online Counseling West Fargo
J.R. Simplot Ammonia Tech, Paid Relocation to Grand Forks, ND Grand Forks
The Home Depot Cashier Christine
The Home Depot Cashier Grandin
SelectQuote Account Manager - November Start Minot
SelectQuote Account Manager - November Start West Fargo
Dish Field In-Home Solutions Technician Beach
Dish Satellite TV Installer - Paid Training Beach
Sanford Health Registered Nurse (RN) Inpatient Medical/Surgical Bismarck
Weatherby Healthcare Physician - Infectious Disease Locums Physician Need in ND Bismarck
General Healthcare Resources - Travel Nursing Travel Nurse - Med/Surg RN - Bismarck, ND Bismarck
General Healthcare Resources - Travel Nursing Travel Nurse - OR RN - Bismarck, ND Bismarck
AFC Transport Flatbed Company Driver Bismarck
Sanford Health LPN Ambulatory North State Street Family Medicine Bismarck
Lowe's Seasonal Retail Associate Bismarck
CHI St. Alexius Bismarck RN - One Call Bismarck
General Healthcare Resources - Travel Nursing Travel Nurse - ER RN - Bismark, ND Bismark
Jackson Therapy Partners Medical Technologist - Travel Contract Carrington
CHI St. Alexius Health Devil's Lake Radiologist Technologist I Devils Lake
CHI St. Alexius Health Devil's Lake Rn - Er Devils Lake
ChampionX District Representative III - Chemicals Dickinson
ChampionX CDL Relief Driver - OFC - Chemical Treatment / Delivery Dickinson
CHI St. Alexius Health Dickinson Radiologic Technologist Dickinson
Centra Healthcare Solutions Speech Language Pathologist (SLP - CCC) - SNF / LTC - Contract Dickinson
CHI St. Alexius Health Dickinson Environmental Services - EVS Dickinson
CHI St. Alexius Health Dickinson CT Technologist Dickinson
United Parcel Service Seasonal Personal Vehicle Package Driver Emerado
CompHealth Physician: Adult Psychiatrist Needed in Fargo, North Dakota JOB-2635486 Fargo
Panera Bread Delivery Driver Fargo
CompHealth Physician: Eldercare Physician in Fargo, North Dakota JOB-2642073 Fargo
CHI St. Alexius Garrison Environmental Services/Housekeeper Garrison
CHI Lisbon Health Acute Care Registered Nurse Lisbon
AFC Transport CDL-A Lease Purchase Driver Mandan
AFC Transport CDL-A Lease Purchase Truck Driver Mandan
United Parcel Service Package Delivery Driver Mekinock
Triage Staffing Travel Speech Therapist/SLP, Cedar Rapids, IA Minot
Triage Staffing - Google Rating 4.9 Travel Medical Technologist, Minot, ND Minot
Hey guys, here are some recent job openings in nd. Feel free to comment here or send me a private message if you have any questions, I'm at the community's disposal! If you encounter any problems with any of these job openings please let me know that I will modify the table accordingly. Thanks!
submitted by DramaticPatience0 to northdakotajobs [link] [comments]

2020.10.23 13:46 tjaylea There are 6 inmates on death row in a secret prison and I've been tasked with eating their sins. If we let it, Greed will consume us all.

I am The Last Sin Eater Nelle Lockwood and i'm already feeling the effects of this job after just the first inmate.

Before continuing, you should start with our previous sin: LUST.
A quick aside; thank you all for your words of support, encouragement and requests to have your sin discovered. I will do my best, but there is a plethora of requests and I am but woman with a monumental task ahead of me.
In the moments following our tumultuous affair with Tallulah, the woman representing “Lust”, I forced down the broth of Mellified man and felt my entire body caked in that sickly sensation you get after downing cod liver oil. It made every facet of my being wretch and try its damnedest to pull the liquid back up from my stomach.
But any good sin eater worth their training knows better than to ruin a good ritual.
Buck saw me struggling and took my hand as the guards funnelled in, rushing onto both sides of the plexiglass; one to check on us and the other to hoist the gargantuan form of Tallulah off of the floor and onto a makeshift stretcher. Though it was obvious even from here that it would not be enough to hold her frame.
“Hey, Nellie. Look at me.” He spoke softly, and I felt the bile rise in my stomach, but I did as he told me. I stared at him for what felt like minutes, his calm demeanour putting me at ease, the acid in my chest fighting to stay up but rapidly dissipating as he put his hands on my shoulders and kissed my forehead. When he pulled away, his breath was hot, and he looked pained, but settled down quickly.
“Any time you get like that, you just lean on me, kay? I’m your safeguard. That’s what I’m here for. Well…” he side-eyes the compendium on the desk, the page flipped open to a news report about “The Mellified Woman of Utah” and turned back, a sly grin on his face that made me melt. “That and building on this ol’ book. Mama McGraw won’t be happy if I don’t complete it soon!”
I got up and gazed over at the book. His mother was the matriarch of the McGraw clan, an old and powerful group of cryptozoologists who for centuries had safeguarded the shores of the UK from threats both outside and inside the nation, creatures older than any structure and more powerful than any king and wiser than any elder. Buck’s job was to ensure that more was catalogued, and the pages filled before his ascension to the elder status.
I wonder if he knew what that book would come to be. What it would represent.
The guards escorted us out and an expectant Warden stood between us and the break room, his hands outstretched and his smile wide.
“Wunderbar! You did excellently, mein devourer of sins! I was most impressed, though a little surprised with the aftermath… did you intend to have such an encounter?”
“No. But I never know how these things will occur when I start. I simply let the conversation flow and like a breeze in the sails, carry me to wherever it leads. But, right now, I just wanna sleep. I’d have appreciated knowing who she was before I went in there. What I’d need to… consume.”
If the Warden recognised my not-so-subtle plea to move, he ignored it with expertise.
“Now, you have some 12 hours until your next appointment with Prisoner #6572, but I must warn you… this one’s tale is more unpleasant than the last. They’re young, but do not mistake that youth for naivete. They make Prisoner #4822 seem tame in comparison.”
“Why do I feel like you’re gonna say that for every interview we have?” Nestor’s eyes narrowed and Edgar croaked away, flapping his wings as the Warden paced near him.
The Warden looked closely at him before smiling wide; the warmth returning to his jubilant face.
“Because I will. This is not an easy task, and I would be wasting a most valuable resource if I sent you to der wolf’s right off the bat. Instead, you are going with what I feel is sie most appropriate difficulty curve. That just so happens to be #6752. I’ll forward you some papers to take an eye over, but I would prefer if only you & the bird man knew the information. The less the Sin Eater knows, the better.”
“Why? Think I can’t handle it? YOU called ME here, Warden Leichenberg.” I spat. I was tired and now insulted. He shook his head and sighed.
“It is because you clearly empathise too much. A sin eater carries the burdens of their sinner for all time. I wish to see you live through this, not be crushed by it. You ARE the last sin eater, we must be mindful of that. Besides, what kind of Warden would ein be if I let a guest die in my prison?”
With that, he clicked his fingers, and the men followed at his heel, pushing the partially obscured body of Tallulah along the hall and out of sight. We filed into the break room and I collapsed in a heap onto the bed, exhaustion taking me over.
Between the trip and the thoughts of what she had done, my entire body was wracked with fatigue. I hadn’t been this worn out since my first sin eating session some 10 years prior.
Drifting in and out of sleep, I heard the muffled voices of Buck, Nestor and occasionally Edgar discussing the papers in front of them. Their voices were steeped in disgust, concern and anxious strategies. I heard them pinning things to the board and keywords like “stitched”, “malformed” and “freak”, but nothing more as deep sleep took me.
It was there I had my recurring dream. The night I was taken from my home and put into the care of my grandparents.
The night I realised I was a sin eater.
Mum had cooked a pot roast and was watching a nature programme with David Attenborough. I loved his voice, still do. His soothing cadences and love of nature resonated with a young me, who spent her time cataloguing bugs in the back garden and dreaming of one day going on grand adventures to find untold secrets and creatures.
I remember looking out on our driveway, towards the main road which bordered on the new forest. Mum was a forest ranger and routinely had to go out for calls. Sometimes there would be an animal incident where a Deer ran into a car, other times there could be a small forest fire or some dickhead teenagers setting off fireworks.
This time was different. Her voice was panicked, and she grabbed her keys, telling me to lock up and not touch the oven as she’d be back in 30 minutes.
There’s a gap after this. There always is. But I recall the purple glow from the clearing, the loud booming sound and the searing hot pain filling my lungs.
Then, I would see a face leering over me, upside down and features contorted as it leaned closer, before waking up in a cold sweat.
But this time, I saw something new. That creature from the airport. Features even more horrifying as they pressed up close to my own, the smell of its sin overbearing my nose and making my eyes water.
The smell of a rotting corpse.
It smiled and held out those gnarled fingers again, this time dropping one digit slowly into its grotesque fist;
Waking up, the lights were dimmed and Buck was nowhere to be seen, nor was his book. Nestor sat in the seat facing opposite, keeping a watchful eye while cradling a sleeping Edgar. When he wasn’t screeching out expletives or being a smartass, he was downright adorable. A small black furry baby at peace in his arms.
“You know I found him the day I lost everything? I stood amid the smoulders of my home and found a small black egg that I assumed was seared from the flames. But no, it was just that. An obsidian egg, untouched by the surrounding destruction. I felt a desire to protect him, especially considering I couldn’t protect them. He bonded with me immediately and picked up words far quicker than any corvid should. Hell, sometimes I think he was brought to me by Lady Death, but that’d be too convenient…” He stroked Edgars feathers softly as he made faint cooing sounds.
“I trust you know my sin, Nelle?” He said, breaking the silence and adding a weight to the room that I didn’t realise was there. He was smiling, but the guilt hung over him like a deluge of emotional weight.
“Yeah. Lesser wrath. You made a bad call, and it cost you everything. Your partner, your two boys, your livelihood. Lady Death made a deal, and here you are. Your sin is in several small parts that cling to you wherever you roam. They smell of sulphur and brimstone, but taste of apples and tears.” I got up and walked to him, kneeling in front of his tired face, and took his hands in mine. “You are not a bad person, Nestor. I don’t sense it, and neither does Buck. You are a protector. If you’ve got my back, I’ve got yours.”
Edgar stirred in his arms and mumbled “Papa. Safety. Papa. Love.” before ruffling his feathers. Nestor’s eyes glazed over and he sniffed, nodding with thanks as I stretched and made myself something to eat, desperate to get the taste of honey out of my mouth.
“Do you think the next sin will really be as bad as the Warden claims?” He asked, looking up at the clock, 3 hours to go until we were due to interview them.
“I think if the Warden wanted to lie to us, he’d try something a bit more complex. So yeah, I’m not ruling anything out.” I sighed and took a long sip from my chamomile tea, the aroma helping to eradicate mellified man, my tastebuds grateful as it passed my tongue.
“But you gotta think; a guy with the name “corpses on a mountain” isn’t to be trusted.
We sat and waited for the prisoner, having followed the same procedures as before. This time, a sense of anticipation and dread hung in the air. Not only because of how the last one had gone, but because both Nestor and Buck knew something I didn’t. Something they desperately wanted to reveal from under the watchful eye of The Warden.
And it was killing them to hide it.
I rolled up my sleeves and took a deep breath in. The sound of someone being wheeled in from the other side of the plexiglass. Unlike the gurney our previous inmate was removed on, this was a wheelchair with restraints. The person hidden behind the low lighting once more.
“May I ask your name before we begin? It’s far too informal in comparison to your assigned number.”
The form cocked its head to the side and held up its hand in a conversational form, whispering to it before responding to us.
“Names are powerful things. For now, you may address us as Emarosa. We contain all things beautiful.” They leaned forward, wiry brown hair poking through the shadows and giving us a glimpse at the owner. “And you are our sin eater. Most good. We have a sin that we want excised from us. It is the one thing we do not want.”
“Very well, that’s what I’m here for, Emarosa. Tell me how your sin came to be. What formed it?”
“We realised early on that we craved more than our means provided. Birth givers did their best with meagre offerings, passing fancies and trinkets that ultimately meant nothing to us. We sought greater things, lesser things. ALL things. But we were young, weak and unable to do such things on our own. We listened and waited until we matured enough to progress.”
“Listened? To whom?” I pressed, their third person schtick already wearing on me, even if it was fascinating. They leaned back in the chair, their body shaking with excitement. No different to Tallulah.
“Our saviour. One of our guiding lights; Moloch.”
The room rumbled. A soft heat flowed in from the corners and I saw the red haze begin permeating around the back of Emarosa’s chair.
“The Canaanite god? THAT Moloch?” Buck scanned his book, putting a finger on the article and sliding it towards me. Depictions of children thrown into his belly, screaming and reaching out for despondent parents as they’re cast into the flames, his nose billowing smoke. I felt sick.
“Yes. Though he did not request such acts in his name. He came to us in a dream on our18th birthday, informing us we were a vessel for him to inhabit one day. But in order to do so, we had to take from everyone else around us. We had to… expand our horizons and our skills. So, we set off to being a doctor and learning the tools of the trade. It was imperative for our metamorphosis. I trust when you spoke to Makepeace, she informed you of something similar?”
I recalled her discussion over growing larger, less clean and eschewing hygiene. Ignoring the desire to shiver, I nodded.
“We had a similar one. Do you not think that it is right for people to grow and change? To desire more than their position offers? Perhaps to aspire for greater things. Things that others have. We do not think it such a strange concept, people take from others all the time in order to survive.”
Buck interjected, Nestor staring daggers at Emarosa.
“That ain’t what you did though, is it? You didn’t just take to survive. In fact, you NEVER took to survive. You simply ransacked. A thief in the lowest sense of the word.” His fists clenched and his teeth gritted, I held up a hand to stop him.
“It’s alright, we’re fine. I promise.” Before he could protest, I put on my firmest voice to ensure I didn’t lose Emarosa’s respect. “Not another word.”
He sat back, shoulders falling under the weight of his words and focusing instead on the compendium and the haze.
“Organs count as vital survival items, you know. We simply required more of them than the usual person.” Emarosa quipped and for the first time, I sensed something other than neutrality in their tone.
“I need you to sit forward so I can see you, Emarosa. I don’t believe we can conduct this properly if you are hidden.
There was a murmuring, the form shifted, and another voice spoke, this one gruff and masculine, sounding like they’d swallowed an ashtray and washed it down with bourbon.
“The fuck is this? You think you can take from ME? I. Own. You. I own all of this. I do what I want because the money in my bank account and the status I covet makes it so. Fuck you. I ain’t moving for shit!”
I was taken aback. This was coming out of nowhere and it certainly didn’t match the aloof tone they’d displayed before. What was this?
“To whom am I speaking now?” I asked, trying to get a handle on the situation, but the form shifted and became elegant, draping one leg over the other and hands folded on their knee.
“Oh, dear. You feel you have the status to address ME? I’m a queen in my own home and I do not speak to the lowly dregs such as you. I can buy and sell you in the blink of an eye, bitch.”
The form argued with itself until settling down and shaking its head. It sighed and leaned forward, into the light and displaying its true horror.
It took everything in me not to scream.
Modern day Prometheus. It was the only thing that came to mind in that moment as the haze split off into two patterns on the sides of their containment chamber. The hair was wiry on one side, slicked back on the other. The head filled with stitched and sutured segments of discoloured flesh, extra eyes drooping in places they shouldn’t be, two distinct faces leering at us as several smaller pain addled faces on their neck and cheeks groaned in protest. One barely masculine face to the left and a slightly more feminine to the right, one all-encompassing mouth at the centre. Innumerable teeth and thick black lips parted for speech.
They were an amalgamation of other human beings. Even when they spoke, the tongue was forked and split into two directions.
“We were once two. Our names no longer matter to anyone but you, it seems. Donnel and Millicent Cartwright. We knew our callings were unique, but we had no idea that there would be two. One for each greedy twin. Where Donnel had Moloch crooning in their ear, Millicent heard from Mammon, the representer of ill-gotten wealth. Though, to us, any wealth acquired by our form means it was always ours. Alas, we wanted more…”
Buck scanned for a newspaper article, but wouldn’t show it to me. I could make out the words “organ thief” and my suspicions were confirmed. The mists were almost complete.
“Why did you steal people’s identities? Why take from them in this way? I know greed to be about food, money, power… but why this?”
Emarosa pondered for a moment, both faces looking to each other before responding.
“The greatest power is that of domination of the soul. Own a person’s flesh, own their entire being. Mammon and Moloch had different ways of saying such things to us, but we knew that in order for us to ascend to the next level, we had to acquire a set amount of souls. Our greed would need to be tested.” They stopped for a moment, hesitant. “WE would need to be tested. Before we came in front of you. The greediest woman of all time in equally avaricious company.”
I felt the hot flash of anger rise in me at that statement. To be called such a thing by a monstrous killer… well, it was enough to set me off. But I tried to maintain my composure as Nestor and Edgar leaned forward, perhaps expecting trouble.
“I consume sins to absolve the person. To set them free. That does NOT make me greedy. Nor is Buck or Nestor in such company of yours.” I breathed, trying to keep things on track. “You’re leading up to the sin you wish to tell, what is it?”
But Emarosa was not done. They tapped their heads with a spindly finger each in tandem.
“But you carry all those sins. Such a beautiful method for absorbing others that we could never wish to acquire. Mr. McGraw is attempting to acquire all the knowledge on beasts and people like us for his own self gain. Mr. Holden over there lost everything through greed and STILL wants more…” They smiled, those white pillars shimmering from their jaws. “I am fed as much information as I wish. We are not so different.”
“The sin. If you could. I am a busy woman.” I replied curtly, I didn’t like my own character being brought into question. Nestor and Buck both holding their nerve, as best they could.]
The soft, feminine voice returned.
“I began acquiring the souls necessary for ascension. It was not easy work, but my brother and I are remarkably efficient with our hands. We would make sure the subject was someone who had something we wanted. It started out as money, food, status. A reason to justify our cause, in those earlier days…”
Donnel butted in.
“But, you eventually realise that it doesn’t matter. None of it matters. It was our destiny to take and take we did. Every single one served a greater purpose, stitched into our fabric and becoming a part of us. Burning what we didn’t need in service to Lord Moloch.”
“And Lord Mammon, yes.” Millicent remarked, her voice quivering with emotion. “But, we knew there would be a greater sacrifice needed. Especially upon our 18th birthday and our loving family discovered our secret. One of our playthings had woken up and managed to escape from the basement. Before Papa could even question it, Donnel bludgeoned him to death. I set upon Mother and used the boiling water from the stove to burn her flesh and cave her soft skull in with a frying pan.”
The mists were almost complete, the shapes of a large bull with the legs of a man and the tail of a scorpion on the left, a heavyset man with a golden crown and a slew of jewelry, his gut exposed and a smile across his wide face on the right.
“We made sure the siblings didn’t suffer much. But we were pressed for time, and both voices rang in our ears. We could not stand to be apart from the family or each other. So, with what time we had, we put our skills to the test one last time.”
Food had begun filling up my table. Plates upon plates of meat cooked to perfection stacked themselves in front of me. The aroma of bacon and eggs filled the air. But I was not hungry.
“They screamed so much that our ears bled. We worked diligently to scrap them as best we could before bringing them into ourselves and joining us together in the beautiful form you see here. Emarosa is the nirvana state we hoped to reach before we met with you, our god of greed.”
As the mists filled, Emarosa rose from their seat on extremely fragile legs, four knees threatening to buckle as this towering mass of flesh and limbs took tentative steps towards the plexiglass, placing one of its hands up against it. Those hands had strangled, cut, ripped and torn apart innocent people. Harvesting their organs, their bones, their flesh. Taking what they want.
Those truly were the hands of greed.
“Our sole regret is that we couldn’t take more of them. For it is our birthright. But, we were instructed to tell our deeds and lay our sins bare. That we have done. Now, we move to the final stage of consumption.”
They took their hand away as the meat continued to pile, Nestor stepping forward to stop it tumbling over. But I shook my head. This was the final moment.
“This ascension… what is it? What does it mean?” I knew this may be my last chance to ask them, I was already becoming eerily familiar with what the end brought these interviews. They smiled as the heads displayed individual expressions of joy.
“It means we will consume everything. Not a single shard of light will be out of our grasp. So it is written. Good luck, my lady. You will need it for the road ahead. I can’t imagine how hard it will be for someone as greedy as you to sacrifice anything… but you will need to before this task is complete.”
As the mist had finished, both figures walked towards Emarosa, somehow towering over even them.
Moloch put a pair of huge anvil-like fists on Donnels face, Mammon placing bright red and muscled hands on Millicents.
Then, without warning, they pulled.
The screaming was unholy, each face and patchwork person shrieking at the top of their lungs, but neither one relented. Slowly, the skin separated from the body and partially intact people were pulled away into their corners, the remains of Emarosa simply falling to the floor in a flesh pile with a sickening wet squelch.
Donnel was pushed into the open, fiery belly of Moloch, the screams rippling through his face and nose as red eyes gleamed from him.
Millicent was put on her knees in front of Mammon, who opened his monstrously large jaws, picking her up by her waist and biting down hard on the top half of her, a spurt of blood staining the plexiglass as he continued to devour the rest of her, kicking in protest and perhaps even in joy.
Buck and Nestor sprung forward to stop me, but I knew I had to eat the food. The ritual was useless without it. I’d closed my eyes and simply taken a bite. The surrounding commotion largely blocked out. The first bite was soft, some blood
dribbled out and stained my chin, the meat was tender and it melted in my mouth as it began to run down my throat. After Mellified Man, this was ambrosia. I began biting down harder, quicker and more voraciously, trying to clear my plate as quick as I could, my stomach expanding to accommodate the extra contents… yet I never felt full or even remotely bloated. As if the food was simply evaporating when I swallowed. I was enjoying it, but only after I gave pause to breathe did I realise that not only was this not true food, but I was choking. Tough, coarse meat filling my throat and burning my nostrils. Thick unyielding fatty was staining my teeth and entrenching itself in my throat, filling my sinuses and even making my eyes water.
The taste… it was horrifying. But not as much as the feeling of thumping in my throat as I pushed hard to swallow, it resisted and felt like it was a small egg I’d elected to attempt eating in one go. I swear I felt it push against me as my body writhed and desperately tried to push it down. I was determined to finish, I couldn’t fail here.
It was only when Buck pulled me away and Edgar swooped down to stare at me, crowing "MEAT. MEAT. TASTY MEAT." that I realised what was going on.
The plate of meat wasn’t steaks. It wasn’t chicken or anything even close. As Buck thumped my back in an effort to help me throw it up, I instead swallowed and felt something iron-tasting fall into my stomach.
What lay left on the plate was a single human heart, still beating faintly, and a small congealed pool of blood around it.
I’d just eaten what remained of the entire family.
Inmate #6527: Donnel and Millicent Cartwright. Known collectively as “Emarosa”.
Sin: Greed.
Food: Steak…The Cartwright Family.
submitted by tjaylea to nosleep [link] [comments]

2020.10.22 16:07 JanMichaelLarkin Red Wings SHL Prospect Report, Week 2

Welcome to Week 2 of the Red Wings SHL Prospect Report!
Due in large part to the coronavirus, nearly every prospect of significance in our pipeline is playing in either the SHL or one of its associated leagues this season. Any Red Wings fan would be well-served by following their progress, and to that end I have created this weekly Red Wings SHL Prospect Report. I pull statistics directly from as well as quotes and clips from all over the hockey world, including our own wonderful users here at DetroitRedWings. If you have any feelings or takes on our prospects that you’d like to share, I encourage you to send me a private message and your insights will be included alongside those of hockey media’s finest.
I have separated the prospects into fluid tiers that may change throughout the season. To keep things simple, these tiers are based solely on my perception of the prospect’s ultimate ceiling. They do not factor in the relative likelihood that they reach that ceiling or their current stage in development. They are obviously entirely subjective.
It should also be noted that players currently outside of the actual SHL (in a junior or minor associated league) have been placed in their own separate tier due to the dramatic differences in quality of competition.
Finally, a huge thanks to u/alexf0rce both for frequently posting fantastic clips to the sub, but also for showing me the basic ins and outs of finding my own via the SHL website. Thanks also to all the reddit users whose comments or posts I quoted below, and last but definitely not least to u/RedWong15 for posting daily prospect stats and inspiring this idea for a weekly post in the first place.

Tier I (Positional Top-5 Potential)
Lucas Raymond (LW/RW, Frolunda HC): After scoring goals in back-to-back games coming into the week, Raymond slowed down a bit with back-to-back games where he was held without a point. He didn’t completely disappear as he was still able to generate chances, but he was unable to convert. Look for him to battle with Seider this afternoon as he suits up against Rogle.
Stats This Week (10/15-10/21): 3 GP, 1 TP (0 G, 1 A), +/- 0
Stats This Season: 9 GP, 5 TP (3 G, 2 A), +3
Clips (10/15-10/21):
Getting absolutely robbed by a brilliant sprawling save against Malmo:
Dances around in the zone during a power play before finding an open man and starting a sequence that leads to a goal against Malmo:
“As of today, Raymond is the Red Wings’ top prospect, but it might not be long after he makes his NHL debut that he becomes the team’s best player – he’s that good. Not only does he represent the elusive blue-chip prospect the Red Wings have been missing, but his addition also creates a roadmap for the team’s future success. I keep saying it, but I’ll say it again: he and Filip Zadina are a match made in hockey heaven.” (Tony Wolak,
“His hands are elite and his ability to beat defenders one-on-one clean in ways unlike other players can create a lot of highlight reel moments. He will be a true PP1 quarterback in the NHL because of the unique plays he can make. He has a unique way of navigating with the puck in the offensive zone, showing the patience and vision of a top NHL playmaker in how he picks apart defenses and finds seams.” (Corey Pronman, The Athletic)
Upcoming Games This Week (10/22-10/28): 10/22 vs. Rogle BKS, 10/24 vs. Lulea HF, 10/27 vs. IK Oskarshamn

Tier II (Top-Line/Top-Pairing Potential)
Moritz Seider (RHD, Rogle BKS): Seider registered a point in his second game in the SHL and looks at home in his new digs in Rogle. He is already making his presence known on the ice, generating offense as well as throwing the body and intimidating opponents. He has been and will likely continue to be everything that Red Wings fans want to see in a first-round defenseman. A showdown with offensive juggernaut Frolunda and fellow early 1st-round Wings pick Raymond looms this afternoon.
Stats This Week (10/15-10/21): 2 GP, 1 TP (0 G, 1 A), +1
Stats This Season: 2 GP, 1 TP (0 G, 1 A), +1
Clips (10/15-10/21):
Putting the puck on net through a screen to set up a goal against Leksands:
A full shift against Brynas, shows excellent patience and control in his own zone and lays a quality hit:
The kid getting his chirp on and throwing a few shoves after the play in the last few seconds against Brynas:
“Seider isn’t a flashy player but he’s very well-rounded. He’s a 6-foot-4 defenseman who is highly mobile for his size, can move the puck well and is a top-end defender. His wingspan, great mobility and elite physicality allow him to make so many stops and project as a tough minutes defenseman in the NHL.” (Corey Pronman, The Athletic)
“If I were to do a short review of Seiders game today I would say that he played extremely well for his first game since March. And added on top of that, a completely new club. He did exactly what he did while he played for Grand Rapids. Reading the play really well and joining the rush whenever he could while not being out of position.” (u/alexf0rce)
Upcoming Games This Week (10/22-10/28): 10/22 vs. Frolunda HC, 10/24 vs. Skelleftea AIK, 10/27 vs. Farjestads BK

Jonatan Berggren (LW/RW, Skelleftea AIK): Despite having a goal disallowed in his first game this week that would have counted by NHL rules, Berggren has continued to look absolutely electric. He came back the following game with two assists and looks poised to continue his domination of the SHL, despite a modest average of around 13 minutes of ice time per game. His games this week include matchups against future teammates Albin Grewe, Moritz Seider, and Joe Veleno.
Stats This Week (10/15-10/21): 2 GP, 2 TP (0 G, 2 A), +1
Stats This Season: 9 GP, 13 TP (2 G, 11 A), +4
Clips (10/15-10/21):
The aforementioned disallowed goal against Farjestads BK- a neat piece of netfront work from a supposed perimeter player:
More excellent work around the net, this time to set up a teammate on a rebound against Linkopings:
Threads a pass through two defenders in his face to keep a play alive that ultimately becomes another goal against Linkopings:
“Berggren is particularly successful at [creating from the perimeter] for three reasons. The first is that his skating is propelled by light crossovers (which help him maintain speed on turns in the offensive zone) and deft footwork (which helps him open up so that he’s always facing inward). The second is his handling, which needs to – and does – seldom include bobbles if he’s going to be successful as such a puck-dominant player. The third is the vision required to find teammates in creative ways, even as teams collapse into the slot.” (Scott Wheeler, The Athletic)
Upcoming Games This Week (10/22-10/28): 10/22 vs. Djurgardens IF, 10/24 vs. Rogle BKS, 10/27 vs. Malmo

Tier III: (Middle-Six/Second-Pairing Potential)
Joe Veleno (C, Malmo): After a bit of a slow start, Joey V seemed to finally adjust to the international ice in the latter two periods of his third game. He showed off high-end offensive skill with a beautiful assist and a deceptive snapshot goal against Frolunda despite his team ultimately falling 6-2. He plays three games this upcoming week, including a showdown against Berggren and Skelleftea on Tuesday.
Stats This Week (10/15-10/21): 3 GP, 2 TP (1 G, 1 A), -2
Stats This Season: 3 GP, 2 TP (1 G, 1 A), -2
Clips (10/15-10/21):
A filthy far-side power play snipe against Frolunda:
Showing off Zetterberg-esque puck control and vision to set up a teammate for a goal against Frolunda:
Dekes an opponent and draws a penalty in his own zone against HV 71:
Watched the [Frolunda] game. Joe Veleno was great. Took a couple big hits (slow to get up after one of them but still had a decent shift after). Threw a couple big hits. Won a bunch of faceoffs (I think he finished around 70% for the game). Deked a defender for an assist. Picked off a couple of passes. Had at least two passes similar to this one to linemates standing right in the mouth of the goal, though only one that resulted in a goal. Had a couple of great shots from the high slot. He fanned on a shot that resulted in a giveaway with the man advantage, but I think it was the same shift that he later put a wrister in on the powerplay, so he made up for it. Overall, he was very strong on and off the puck and played with a poised confidence all game.” (u/thom_driftwood)
Upcoming Games This Week (10/22-10/28): 10/22 vs. Vaxjo Lakers HC, 10/24 vs. IK Oskarshamn, 10/27 vs. Skelleftea AIK

Albert Johansson (LHD, Farjestads BK): It was a quiet week from the cerebral defender, as Johansson played only two games and registered no points and a +1. He will hope to improve this week with three games ahead, including a clash with Rogle and potential future D-partner Seider next Tuesday.
Stats This Week (10/15-10/21): 2 GP, 0 TP (0 G, 0 A), +1
Stats This Season: 9 GP, 4 TP (1 G, 3 A), +4
Clips (10/15-10/21): None
Quotables: None
Upcoming Games This Week (10/22-10/28): 10/22 vs. Orebro HK, 10/24 vs. Leksands IF, 10/27 vs. Rogle BKS

Theodor Niederbach (C/RW, Frolunda HC): After tearing up the U20 league for 22 points in 13 games, Niederbach was moved up to the big club on Tuesday. He played only a scant six seconds in his first game (yes, you read that correctly), but so long as he remains on the men’s team he has moved out of the minojunior league tier and into Tier 3 with Veleno and Johansson. He will look to see his ice team improve, hopefully by quite a lot, this upcoming week.
Stats This Week (10/15-10/21): 1 GP, 0 TP (0 G, 0 A) +/- 0
Stats This Season: 1 GP, 0 TP (0 G, 0 A) +/- 0
Clips (10/15-10/21):
Silky mitts backhand goal versus Malmo U20 prior to his promotion to the men’s team:
“I’m a skilled center that can read the game very well, but I want to be a complete center who you can trust in all zones. If you want to be a good center, you have to play in the D-zone and be good there.” (Theodor Niederbach)
“Every time I talked to Hakan and discussed Niederbach with our other Swedish scout, Thomas Carlsson, the one thing they kept coming back to was how creative and how smart of a hockey player he was… this guy can do some special things with the puck.” (Kris Draper, Red Wings Director of Amateur Scouting)
“Something that [Niederbach] does well is display the ability to see plays through layers. It is a big part of why he is so successful on the man advantage. He doesn’t need an obvious passing lane to create a scoring chance; he can see them through traffic, and does not focus solely on what is happening nearby. With his intelligence, Niederbach often spots his preferred passing lane opening before receiving or picking up the puck. It allows him to swiftly set up plays from anywhere in the offensive zone before defensemen can adjust. He’s so often just that one extra step ahead of the opposition.” (Cristoffer Hedlund, EliteProspects Rinkside)
Upcoming Games This Week (10/22-10/28): 10/22 vs. Rogle BKS, 10/24 vs. Lulea HF, 10/27 vs. IK Oskarshamn

Tier IV (Fourth-Line/Bottom-Pairing Potential)
Albin Grewe (RW/LW, Djurgardens IF): The T-Rex finally broke through and registered his first point this season against Linkopings, then two games later saw his ice time increase substantially (from a previous high of 10:55 and an average of 7:59 all the way to 16:52). Things seem to be trending upward for the aggressive young winger, and Wings fans should hope to see more of the same this week. He squares off against Skelleftea and fellow Wings prospect Jonatan Berggren this afternoon.
Stats This Week (10/15-10/21): 3 GP, 1 TP (0 G, 1 A), -1
Stats This Season: 8 GP, 1 TP (0 G, 1 A), -2
Clips (10/15-10/21):
Shoots the puck and crashes the net, leading to a goal against Linkopings and his first point of season:
Quotables: None
Upcoming Games This Week (10/22-10/28): 10/22 vs. Skelleftea AIK, 10/24 vs. Brynas IF, 10/27 vs. Vaxjo Lakers HC

Elmer Soderblom (RW/LW, Frolunda [U20]): Like Niederbach, Soderblom was moved up to Frolunda prior to the Tuesday game; unlike Niederbach, he was given somewhat substantial ice time (9:36). As has been the case in the past, though, he failed to do much with it. Nonetheless, this week he moves out of the juniominor league tier and into Tier 4 with Albin Grewe.
Stats This Week (10/15-10/21): 1 GP, 0 TP (0 G, 0 A) +/- 0
Stats This Season: 5 GP, 0 TP (0 G, 0 A) +1
Clips (10/15-10/21): None
Quotables: None
Upcoming Games This Week (10/22-10/28): 10/22 vs. Rogle BKS, 10/24 vs. Lulea HF, 10/27 vs. IK Oskarshamn

Tier V (Junior & Minor Leagues)
William Wallinder (LHD, Modo [HockeyAllsvenskan]): Wallinder registered an assist in his first game of the week, but failed to generate much in the latter two as his Modo team was shelled first 4-0 and then 3-0. Due to cancellations, he will unfortunately play only one game next week.
Stats This Week (10/15-10/21): 3 GP, 1 TP (0 G, 1 A), -3
Stats This Season: 4 GP, 1 TP (0 G, 1 A), -3
Clips (10/15-10/21): None
“When you start talking about the size and the range, and you just look at some of the teams that were successful through the playoffs, they had a big D core. And certainly that’s kind of something that we were talking about. But in the end, you’re not going to draft these players just because they’re big, you want to draft them because they have to be able to skate, they have to be able to make a good first pass, and that’s what we felt that we got in William.” (Kris Draper, Red Wings Director of Amateur Scouting)
“William Wallinder is the ultimate Jekyll and Hide prospect. On his worst days, as a 6'4" Swedish defenseman making head scratching decisions with the puck and showcasing worse gap control than a Matt Patricia defense, some might shudder at the similarities to Jonathan Ericsson. However, the good news is that Wallinder is possibly the best skating defenseman from the 2020 draft and on his best days he can rush the puck up the ice in a blur or effectively outlet the puck on the tape to a forward with speed. He's managed to stick in the tier 2 Swedish men's league so far this season, a good sign that his defensive play and decision making have been more steady this year, as he was sent back down to Juniors last year during the season due to these issues. All the skating, skill, and brain are there - he just has to put it together consistently.” (u/MrBooombastic)
Upcoming Games This Week (10/22-10/28): 10/23 vs. HC Vita Hasten

Gustav Berglund (D, Vasteras IK [HockeyAllsvenskan]): Due to the aforementioned rash of cancellations in the HockeyAllsvenskan, Berglund only played one game this past week and will play only two next week. In his one day on the ice this week he registered four shots on goal but was unable to generate any points.
Stats This Week (10/15-10/21): 1 GP, 0 TP (0 G, 0 A), +/- 0
Stats This Season: 7 GP, 2 TP (0 G, 2 A), +1
Clips (10/15-10/21): None
Quotables: None
Upcoming Games This Week (10/22-10/28): 10/26 vs. HC Vita Hasten, 10/28 vs. Vaesby IK HK
submitted by JanMichaelLarkin to DetroitRedWings [link] [comments]

2020.10.17 03:36 a15minutestory [WP] “You’ve reached 911. This service is no longer operational. All citizens are advised to seek shelter. Goodbye.” [Part 30]

"Did you just say plane? As in... As in like a different plane of existence?" I asked as I turned myself around, inspecting the massive room.
"That's right," I heard Deacon affirm as I made my way over to a nearby balcony. "Same as Heaven, Hell, Purgatory, and the like," he added. "Ain't many who know about this one though."
I walked across a dusty rug with intricate patterns and when I came to the edge of the balcony, I looked in awe over a great sea of shelves stuffed with books, scrolls, and all manner of texts as far as the eye could see. Above, within the inky black abyss were what appeared to be windows, but they were situated in such way that it would be impossible for them to be traditional windows fixed to a wall. Some faced each other, others faced upward, while a few faced the two of us. Rain gently swept against them from the other side, accompanied by rolling thunder and the occasional flash of lightning. I tried to focus on the random floating pages that gently blew by me, but they were adorned with foreign text and symbols that were completely alien to me. I couldn't help but have the sense that I shouldn't be here- like that feeling you get when you walk into the back room of a store you don't work at.
I was filled to the brim with that feeling, alongside dread, anxiety, fear... and an overflowing sense of curiosity so powerful that it drowned the negative emotions within it. Deacon joined me at the balcony and leaned over it. He whistled as he spied the dizzying drop.
"The Hovel," I said just above a whisper. "You said this was his home. Does Yidrixl have this entire realm of existence all to himself?"
"He enjoys his solitude," he responded. "I don't rightly know that he's powerful enough to create a plane of existence... But that don't mean he ain't clever enough to conquer one." He turned to me, "Sorry 'bout the ride here. I've only been invited here twice, myself. Both times I saw some pretty frightenin' things... can't imagine what you must have seen..."
He turned around back towards the tall book shelves behind us, "Would have been nice to have a warning!" He shouted.
"Where is he?" I asked as I turned around.
Deacon simply stared ahead into the darkness, "Right there." He whispered.
I looked into the abyss beyond the shelves and saw movement. It would be more appropriate to say that the shadows themselves were moving- twisting around and taking shape before us. Suddenly, the pages that were floating loftily around us began to converge on a point within the darkness, flying quickly and landing upon one another in rapid succession until they began to take shape. Within moments, he stepped from the shadows. Imagine an average sized man covered head to toe in pages that fit tightly around his figure. The text on the paper that clung to him crawled across their pages this way and that as he approached us slowly.
The two of us just stood there in silence as we watched him come to a stop about six feet from us. It was the most tense several seconds of silence I'd ever been apart of.
"Well, you've got us." Deacon broke the silence. "So come on now. Out with it. What do we owe ya?"

"𝔖𝔱𝔯𝔞𝔦𝔤𝔥𝔱 𝔱𝔬 𝔟𝔲𝔰𝔦𝔫𝔢𝔰𝔰, 𝔱𝔥𝔢𝔫?"

I noticeably flinched at his voice. I would never get used to hearing it. It was like a whisper and a shriek at the same time. He turned his gaze my way, and tilted his head.

"𝔚𝔥𝔢𝔯𝔢 𝔞𝔯𝔢 𝔪𝔶 𝔪𝔞𝔫𝔫𝔢𝔯𝔰? 𝔜𝔬𝔲 𝔣𝔯𝔦𝔤𝔥𝔱𝔢𝔫 𝔢𝔞𝔰𝔦𝔩𝔶 𝔡𝔬𝔫'𝔱 𝔶𝔬𝔲, 𝔠𝔥𝔦𝔩𝔡?"

I didn't like him implying that I'm a wimp... or a child. I felt that familiar rage starting to bubble within me, but quelled it quickly. This was no place for a fight.
"How is this?" Yidrixl asked in a much more pleasant voice- the woman's from the lab to be exact. He must have felt the tension leave me, because beneath the pages I could see his cheeks pull back in his ten times larger than life smile. "Better? Good." He said, turning his attention back to Deacon.
"I suppose I do owe you an explanation. I have an assignment for you. Yes, an assignment."
Deacon and I waited patiently as he slowly began to move across the room towards a cabinet. It was a grand ornate piece of woodwork with golden etched trim. He opened one of the doors and removed from the cabinet a book. It was leather bound, the pages yellow with age, and it exuded venerability. He closed the cabinet and moved slowly back in our direction, each footfall delicate and silent as if he were floating rather than walking. He stopped in front of us.
"Can either of you tell me what this is?" He asked in a manner conveying that he already knew the answer, and was asking us rhetorically.
"A dusty ol' book," Deacon said with more than enough snark in his voice. "What of it?"
Yidrixl turned his face towards mine, expecting an answer. I felt a lump in my throat and tossed out the first thing that came to mind.
"The book is ancient," I said. "Like, the kind of ancient that you would be careful in regards to light exposure." I added for good measure.
"Very good." He said. "It is in fact, an ancient piece of literature. It is written by perhaps one of the most impeccable philosophers to have every lived among you, and not a single one of you have remembered her name."
"Uhh, alright." Deacon responded dryly. "You want us to find her?"
I watched Yidrix's shoulders slump as he glanced at Deacon and then back to me. Yidrixl and I shared a moment for the first time just then.
"No," he responded in an exasperated tone. "I don't want the two of you 'find her', she is very quite dead." He tucked the book under his arm, "She was so far ahead of her time that she died alone in obscurity. Yes, miserable obscurity." He walked back over to his cabinet and tucked the book inside before returning to us. "This woman wrote three masterful works, no doubt unmatched in their beauty and insight. I regrettably own only one." He folded his arms. "You two will procure the other two texts for me."
"What?" Deacon spat out. "How in Sam hell are we supposed to find those books? How do we even know they exist?"

"𝔅𝔢𝔠𝔞𝔲𝔰𝔢 ℑ 𝔰𝔞𝔦𝔡 𝔰𝔬."

The text that crawled over the indents where his eyes would be glowed like hot coals as he lost his temper, and pages that clung to him wrinkled and scrunched. I braced myself as his malice washed over me- I could feel his anger. His wrath eclipsed my own even at my angriest. Deacon's duster fluttered in the draft created by Yidrixl's outburst, but he stood firm with his hands in his pockets. The text cooled off into its black ink, and the pages smoothed out over his body as he relaxed his shoulders.
"I apologize. Know that the words that come from my mouth are fact, for if no other reason than that I spake them thusly." He glanced at me, then back to Deacon. "Do not question my intel again."
I swallowed, and tried to say 'yes sir' but the words got caught in my throat and I gave up on them. Thankfully Deacon started speaking.
"Alright, alright, simmer down. I'm sorry, it's just... where do we even begin? Do you know how long that would take? There's people on earth still dyin' right now. Shoot, there might not even be an earth left to save if this takes too long!"
Yidrixl put his hands on his hips. "The books are both in O'ogan. More specifically, they're in the possession of one named Hegel Van Dannenfelser."
"O'ogan?" I asked.
"Plane of existence!" Deacon called out, quick to intercept the question. I'd forgotten to be careful about asking Yidrixl for info. "And now I understand," Deacon added. "We could spend years there and not a day would go by on earth."
"Correct," Yidrixl responded.
"But if you know who has them... and where they are... Why do you need us?" I asked. It felt safe to inquire about the details of our assignment, and Deacon didn't bother to jump in. He folded his arms as if he were also expecting an answer. Silence hung in the air for an uncomfortable amount of time before he finally spoke.
"There is.... a substance plentiful in the plane of O'ogan to which I am... averse." He paused for a moment before continuing. "Like needles to the skin... I am an unnatural creature who's material makeup was not designed for a place such as O'ogan."
I still had more questions. "How did the books end up there?"
"Kid," Deacon spoke up.
"It's quite alright, little Deacon..." Yidrixl said. Quite... alright." He turned my direction and lifted his hands. Papers began to peel from his body to form a sphere above his palms about the size of a softball. "Your earth was once the home to two deities..." He began. "They were both equally powerful in different ways. One was a deity of arcane magic... and the other a deity of natural magic."
I stared in amazement as more papers peeled from his body and folded themselves in origami figures of gods with wings and scepters.
"However when it came to the subject of death... the two of them disagreed upon what would become of the soul. The two of them coexisted for as long as their tempers would allow until they split the earth asunder..." The paper orb split into another paper orb, the two of them rotated around one another before separating, one going with the left paper deity and the other to the right. "The deity of natural magic became the god you pray to today. You call him many names, but he is one and the same. The intricate sciences you enjoy spring from the natural order, a system he penned himself based on the inner workings of his natural magic. The other world remains in what you would consider to be the dark ages, but the people command arcane magic to achieve similarly impressive feats compared to their scientifically endowed counterparts on your earth..."
"That... This..." I stammered.
"What kinda nonsense'r you feedin' us?" Deacon piped up. "You havin' fun messin' with him?"
I watched Yidrixl turn his head towards Deacon, a smile appearing beneath the paper.
"O'ogan kept several things that used to be a part of your earth. Animals you've never known. Fruits you've never tasted." He allowed the paper to re-assimilate onto his form before continuing. "I purchased the first book from the philosopher... I was her first and only fan. When she died... I didn't know her other two texts existed. I only recently received word about the other two- a partner of mine... Yes a partner, procured a page from one of the other books for me. There is no mistaking that it is her handwriting... and her beautiful words."
I glanced at Deacon. He picked up on it too.
"What happened to your partner in O'ogan? Why could he only get a page?" Deacon demanded.
There was a long silence before Yidrixl responded. "I tire of speaking now. You find Hegel Van Dannenfelser, and you'll find the books. Bring them to me and I will help you bring Dregzel to her knees."
Rolling thunder from outside filled the silence.
"Alright then," Deacon conceded quietly. "How do we get back after we grab em?"
"Simply call my name," Yidrixl stated. "However..."
A crack of thunder followed by a flash of lightning preceded his warning.

"ℑ𝔣 𝔶𝔬𝔲 𝔠𝔞𝔩𝔩 𝔪𝔶 𝔫𝔞𝔪𝔢... 𝔞𝔫𝔡 𝔱𝔥𝔢 𝔱𝔢𝔵𝔱𝔰 𝔞𝔯𝔢 𝔫𝔬𝔱 𝔦𝔫 𝔶𝔬𝔲𝔯 𝔥𝔞𝔫𝔡𝔰..."

The rain stopped briefly.
"Well... Don't do that."
He lifted his hands and from them sprang the force of a jet engine, knocking the two of us over the side of the balcony. I screamed, but I could hear Deacon screaming obscenities not far away as we fell together. I felt as though my body were being pulled and stretched as I hallucinated all the colors of the rainbow.
And I passed out.
. . .
. . .
. . .
. . .
. . .
"Hey kid!"
. . .
My eyes slowly opened to see three Deacons kneeling over me against a bright blue sky. They slowly converged into one Deacon as my vision returned to me.
"Hey! C'mon. We can't stay here." He said before standing up.
I picked myself up off the ground and held my head as I looked around. We were in a bright green pasture littered with beautiful flowers. A calming zephyr blew gently over us and the air smelled sweet. On the horizon was a quaint little town built of wood and stone with its own windmill. It looked like something you'd see out of a history book.
"You ready, kid?" Deacon asked, extending a hand towards me. "We've got a lot of work to do."
I nodded. "Let's get going."
Writing Prompt submitted by u/76tubas
submitted by a15minutestory to A15MinuteMythos [link] [comments]

2020.10.16 19:46 dickwheat Moving Questions

I’m sure this gets asked enough here, but here we go. My partner and I are looking to relocate to get closer to our family. My parents live in Traverse City and hers in Columbus OH. We moved to New Hampshire from Ohio for her to get a Masters degree but have been wanting to come back closer to family. We love the nature and climate of the northeast but are being priced out with houses averaging 350k for a tiny run down ranch and rents approaching 2000/mo average. We thought about returning back to our hometowns, but cannot leave the nature and wonderful winter behind. We also want to be within a few hours of our family in case we ever have kids. I have spent time in Grand Rapids growing up visiting family and liked it, but never lived here. I have always enjoyed the city, but don’t know the reality of living here.
Are there jobs?
Are there reasonable rents under 1500 or houses under 250k?
Are there other younger professionals that like to hike/paddle/fish/ski?
Just a bit about us and what we’re looking for: We are both professionals in our late 20s. I’m a music teacheclassical violinist and she is a school psychologist. We love outdoors and all four seasons. Im a huge fly fisherman and she loves hiking. Besides that, we enjoy being able to get to shopping and restaurants/breweries fairly easily.
Any tips aside from coming back to visit again(that’s already on the calendar) would be appreciated.
submitted by dickwheat to grandrapids [link] [comments]

2020.10.15 23:08 alexf0rce Small review of Seiders and Velenos first SHL games (with a few highlights/clips)

Hello everyone. Since I know a lot of people wish they were able to watch SHL games I recorded a couple clips that I found somewhat interesting.
If I were to do a short review of Seiders game today I would say that he played extremely well for his first game since March. And added on top of that, a completely new club. He did exactly what he did while he played for Grand Rapids. Reading the play really well and joining the rush whenever he could while not being out of position. He plays with close to 0 fear, meaning he never second guesses himself and plays really smart. I think I saw him do one single mistake which was him holding onto the puck a little too long in the D-Zone which caused a forechecker to be able to poke the puck away from him, but he had a forward to back him up so it didn't end up being dangerous. Seider finished the game with 16:22 minutes of icetime with 1 goal against (a goalie fuck up, Seider didnt have anything to do with it) and 1 goal for from the above penalty kill clip. His D partner is Éric Gélinas which is an experienced D which Rögle relies the most on. So in the long run I can see Seider increasing his TOI up in to the 20's with enough games.
I had the Malmö - HV71 game on my second monitor to glance over at Veleno whenever i had the opportunity but I didnt really clip any moments from that game since I still wanted to focus somewhat on the games instead of just recording.
As for Veleno I didn't focus a whole lot on the game but I did see most of it. It looked like he wasn't quite comfortable yet because he has basically no experience on big ice. He tried to make plays but they often just ended being dump-ins. He does play on the right point on the second power play which is a good sign. I noticed a couple good defensive plays, especially one where he picked the pocket on a HV71 player as he was skating behind him resulting in a rush the other way. He played a total of 17:55 minutes which is the most out of all centers surprisingly but it wasn't like he played in a typical 1C role, as in they didnt create the most chances. His line did score one goal but he didn't get an assist on that. I did notice him staying out a little too long on some shifts which might have something to do with the bigger ice, so that is something that he has to adapt better to. It lead to him looking pretty exhausted at times but it was also his first game so I hope it gets better on that front.
Some final words on this then. Seider definitely had the better game but I think part of that is because he is more used to the european style of hockey. Seider also looked a little more "hungry" to play after not having played any official games since March, but I think Veleno will pick up speed quickly because you could see that he wasn't up to game speed just yet.
I can't promise that I will do these for every game I watch but I figured that I can maybe do these here and there. In the future they might be just more about the clips and not about how they played since I think these first games are the most interesting to do a "review" style thing on. But I hope you guys enjoyed this one.
submitted by alexf0rce to DetroitRedWings [link] [comments]

2020.10.14 08:48 shallowblue Every player rated (from the Herald-Sun)

Every Collingwood player rated for 2020: Contracts, trade whispers and players to watch in 2021
Nick Wade, News Corp Australia Sports Newsroom
October 14, 2020 6:00am
Subscriber only

Collingwood has been urged to be “aggressive” with its list to stem a slide down the ladder after its semi-final horror show.
The Pies are expected to be active in this year’s trade period as they also juggle a number of list headaches, headlined by the contract demands of Jordan De Goey.
After narrowly losing the 2018 Grand Final, Collingwood slipped to a preliminary final loss last year and a semi-final whitewash this year.
“After seeing the way their season has come to an end, they have to be aggressive with their list,” Essendon champion Matthew Lloyd said on Footy Classified.
Mystery: Pies’ case of the missing grope
On the issue of paying De Goey upwards of $1 million a season, former Melbourne forward Garry Lyon on SEN said: “I wouldn’t pay a million bucks for him (per season), but someone will pay $800,000 (per season). Because when he did come back, he turned a game on its head on his own. Not many players can do that.”
Does wingman Tom Phillips look for a new home? Will Matthew Scharenberg get back home to South Australia? Should Brayden Sier test the market?
Let’s assess every player.
Age: 21 Games: 54 Contract: Until end of 2021
Started the season well with seven goals in his first three games, but appears a shell of the emerging star who won the 2018 Rising Star Award as a key part of the Pies’ Grand Final push. Is contracted for next season, but regressed to the fringe of senior selection in the back half of the year. Is a fresh start at a rival club needed, or does he simply need a strong pre-season at Collingwood to recalibrate as he enters a defining year? Still took the second-most marks inside 50 for the Pies this year, but had only three touches and a tackle in the semi-final hiding against Geelong. No doubt has the talent, it’s just deserted him at the moment.
Age: 24 Games: 98 Contract: Out of contract
Intriguing situation. The Pies suggest he is on the lookout for the biggest deal possible – more than the reported $800,000 he is on at Collingwood. But will another club be forthcoming as he explores the market? Carlton was said to be in, now apparently out. Essendon is also linked. With a host of other top-end signings placing pressure on their salary cap, the Pies can only pay so much for a player who has undoubted talent but whose top finish in a best-and-fairest is eighth. He is also facing an indecent assault charge and is due to appear in court on October 30. A nasty finger injury kept him out for two months this year, but the question clubs will ask is whether his 2020 output – down on his dazzling 2018 brilliance – warrants such a price tag. No doubt a matchwinner who, at 24, is still yet to enter the prime of his career and can do things others can’t. De Goey knocked back a $5 million offer from North Melbourne in 2017, but may not be prepared to sacrifice as much cash this time. A fascinating watch-this-space.
Age: 20 Games: 15 Contract: Until end of 2022
One of the success stories of the season for Collingwood, having become a mainstay of the Magpies line-up after forcing his way into the side in Round 6. The 20-year-old defender received a Rising Star nomination and regularly provided reliable defensive rebound for the Pies. His disposal efficiency of 85.1 was the best of any Pies player who played more than five games. Missed a few matches with a nasty gash in his leg against Sydney but returned without any issue. Will be someone Collingwood will look to next season for natural improvement.
Age: 26 Games: 151 Contract: Until end of 2027
Didn’t have the season he would have liked and Nathan Buckley shed some frank insights into why after Saturday night’s semi-final loss. Grundy went from All-Australian in 2018-19 to not even making the squad this year, reflected by a drop in his most of his statistical averages, including key areas relating to disposals, hit-outs and clearances. He also slipped to sixth on the AFL Player Ratings ranking of ruckmen, despite playing all 19 games. “Brodes is a guy who loves the game and loves footy, but he also loves to get away from it,” Buckley said. “When you’re in a hub, it’s been a little more difficult for him to do that.”
Age: 28 Games: 123 Contract: Until end of 2021
The fit-again Elliott was one of the Pies’ most durable players this season, and became a key part of the club’s finals push. Having battled injuries in recent years, he found valuable consistency and a new lease on his career, playing 18 games while spending more time in the midfield. Where his game was measured on goals in the past, this year it was built around midfield impact. Even still, he applied the most tackles inside 50 for the Pies. Last year he spent just 2 per cent in the midfield, but upped that to 37 per cent this year. At just 28, and provided his body stays fit, he still has a couple of valuable years left for the Pies.
Jamie Elliott in the clear in the semi-final against Geelong. Picture: Michael Klein
Age: 21 Games: 9 Contract: Until end of 2022
A breakthrough year after making his debut in his third season on the list. He played nine matches split across two stints in the side, but was dropped for the finals series. As he develops, the Pies will hope the rangy midfielder can add a bit more size to his frame as he looks to entrench himself in the starting 22 next season.
Age: 27 Games: 173 Contract: Until end of 2025
Treloar’s management is adamant he will remain at Collingwood despite his partner, Kim Ravaillion, signing a 10-month contract to play netball with the Queensland Firebirds next year. The situation unsurprisingly piqued Gold Coast’s interest – and the Suns could offer its No 5 selection to the Pies to entice a trade – but the midfielder is said to be committed to seeing out his long-term deal at Collingwood. All parties at this stage are indicating Treloar will stay at Collingwood and will make the long-distance situation work. Treloar battled more hamstring issues this year but his form was otherwise very strong across his 10 matches.
Age: 26 Games: 89 Contract: Until end of 2021
Remains contracted after signing a three-year deal at the end of 2018, but faces an uncertain future after his injury-prone body again failed him this season. Langdon was pushing to be available late in the season, but suffered a setback with an ongoing knee injury. The Pies rate his character and he played 23 games in their 2018 Grand Final campaign, but will they see the best of the 26-year-old again after he hasn’t played since Round 9, 2019? In one recent training session at Maroochydore, coach Nathan Buckley walked many laps in deep conversation with Langdon.
Age: 23 Games: 22 Contract: Until end of 2021
A successful product of the mid-season draft, Noble has quickly become part of the furniture of Collingwood’s defence. The Pies have benefited from his pace, often looking to get the footy into his hands to launch from the back half. Played 17 matches this season and has the confidence of someone who looks set to be a key part of the side into the future. His two-year deal expires next year, but there should be no worries about him getting a fresh offer.
Age: 32 Games: 316 Contract: Until end of 2021
Created Collingwood history this season by overtaking Tony Shaw on the club’s all-time games record list. Shaw, himself, paid Pendlebury the ultimate compliment by saying he could play for a number of seasons yet. Missed a chunk of games in the middle of the season through injury but still clocked 20+ possessions in 11 of his 15 games and led the Pies for goal assists.
Age: 30 Games: 177 Contract: Until end of 2022
Beams has not played since Round 11 last season after stepping away from the game to deal with his mental health. He was involved in a car crash earlier this year that he later admitted was a “deliberate” and a “massive cry for help”. Collingwood has continued to offer off-field support and there appears an acceptance he is unlikely to play again. Collingwood and Beams will discuss his future in the coming weeks.
Age: 25 Games: 41 Contract: Out of contract
Scharenberg is expected to explore his options, potentially even a return to South Australia, after falling out of selection favour this season. The former No. 6 draft pick played only three matches in 2020, with his most recent being in Round 8 when the Magpies were thrashed by West Coast. Adelaide might see potential in bringing in Scharenberg to help bolster its backline.
Age: 26 Games: 151 Contract: Until the end of 2024
In a season of widespread disruption, Copeland Trophy winner Adams was a constant presence who defied it all. He made the All-Australian team for the first time in his career and played every match in his best-ever season, helping drive a midfield that was at times without Steele Sidebottom and Scott Pendlebury. An on-ball general, he had 20 more clearances than the next-best teammate (Pendlebury), was the club’s leading ball-winner, applied the most pressure, was involved in the most score involvements and had the most contested possessions. One of their few better players against Geelong in the dismal semi-final, too.
Age: 25 Games: 11 Contract: Until the end of 2021
Played 10 games this season in his first year at the club after crossing from Sydney and is clearly in the Pies’ plans after he played both finals despite not playing for the previous month. His support role to Grundy allowed Collingwood to work over Nic Naitanui in the elimination final. At one point in the season he was keeping Mason Cox out of the side. A handy acquisition.
Age: 33 Games: 198 Contract: Out of contract
The much-liked Dunn has decided to retire having played only two matches this season after earning a career reprieve 12 months ago. He was delisted at the end of last year by Collingwood but relisted as backup, earning back-to-back games in Rounds 11-12 after not playing at all in 2019 with knee issues. He continued to train with the main squad until the Pies were knocked out of the finals. Squeezed everything out of his body after starting at Melbourne in 2006.
Age: 31 Games: 231 Contract: Until end of 2021
Mayne returned from a sickening facial fracture to play in both of Collingwood’s finals this season. Since joining the Pies in 2017, he hasn’t missed a final, showing his value to the side at the pointy end of the season. After the broken cheekbone incident, coach Nathan Buckley described how highly Collingwood rated Mayne. “The bloke continues to put his body on the line. His teammates love him and he’s not in a good way. He’s a sore boy. He’s done it in every one of his actions since he’s come to the club.” Signed a one-year extension at the start of the year to take him into 2021.
Age: 22 Games: 49 Contract: Until end of 2022
Had a breakout 2019 but could not quite reach the same heights this season, despite playing the bulk of the year. Suffered an ankle injury but was then dropped on the eve of the finals and couldn’t force his way back in.
Age: 32 Games: 230 Contract: Retired
Varcoe has retired after being a wonderful servant for the Pies since crossing from Geelong midway through his career. Varcoe joined Collingwood in 2015 as part of a three-way trade and played 92 games for the Magpies. The Pies were the winners of that deal where Heritier Lumumba went to Melbourne and Mitch Clark joined Geelong. Varcoe played nine matches this year in an injury-interrupted campaign before being squeezed out of the team at the end of the year. A two-time premiership player at Geelong (2009, 2011), Varcoe also provided many happy memories for Pies fans in finals.
Age: 31 Games: 158 Contract: Out of contract
Comes out of contract but the early indications are the Magpies want to offer him a one-year deal to take him into next season. Greenwood played the last six matches of the season – including both finals – after recovering from a torn ACL suffered in last year’s finals series. His ability to still negate an opponent (most recently Tim Kelly in the elimination final) and his strong recovery from knee surgery gives hope that he still has a role to play at Collingwood next season.
Age: 31 Games: 152 Contract: Retired
Suffered an injury setback on the eve of the finals and made the call to bring forward his retirement, effective immediately, after managing only two games this year. Reid was a dominant defender for the Pies between 2010-13 in particular, playing in the 2010 flag and making All-Australian in 2011. But soft-tissue injuries often hampered him during the second half of his career.
Age: 24 Games: 89 Contract: Until end of 2021
Could be one to watch from a trade perspective. Got injured at the wrong time of the season and was then overlooked for selection as Collingwood went unchanged into its semi-final against Geelong. Phillips had otherwise been a regular in the side, having not missed a game between 2018-19 and played the first 15 games this year before injuring his hamstring. Josh Daicos appears to have jumped ahead of him now. He was available to play against the Cats but the Pies opted to keep him out. Rival clubs circled Phillips last year. Perhaps they will again.
Age: 29 Games: 243 Contract: Until the end of 2021
The bumper five-year contract he signed in 2016 expires at the end of next season. It was a mixed season for Sidebottom. He copped a four-match ban for a breach of the AFL’s COVID protocols in late June, but returned to play some solid footy before leaving the club’s hub to return home for the birth of his child. The Pies tried to get Sidebottom back up to Queensland on the eve of the finals but the plan hit roadblocks and was abandoned.
Age: 29 Games: 179 Contract: Until end of 2022
Roughead had a solid year across 17 games but coach Nathan Buckley conceded after the semi-final that the key defender was among a number of players who were not suited to the 24/7 nature of the footy hub bubble, more preferring their space and work-life balance. He has been an elite find for the Pies since crossing from the Western Bulldogs, so there’s no worries there in terms of his future.
Age: 29 Games: 103 Contract: Until end of 2021
The small forward did not have the impact he would have liked this year across 14 games, kicking four goals and only averaging a tick over 10 possessions a match. His tackle numbers were down, too, on the level he normally applies. Contracted for next season but could there be some movement in the coming weeks?
Age: 27 Games: 153 Contract: Until end of 2023
Crisp was one of the positive stories of the season for Collingwood, finishing second in Champion Data’s rankings of “general” defenders in the AFL for the year. It came on the back of a third placing in last year’s Copeland Trophy. Crisp played all 19 games and showed a high level of consistency. He finished the season in top form and was one of only a couple of Pies players who could hold their head high after the semi-final loss to Geelong. Entering the prime of his career, if he’s not there already.
Age: 21 Games: 35 Contract: Out of contract
Yet to sign but seems destined to stay at Collingwood next year and beyond. Daicos’s stocks grew rapidly this year, emerging into a dynamic ball-user on the wing, coupled with some of the freakish goalscoring ability of his famous father. He played 18 games at a high level this year, after playing only five last year and 10 the year before. Daicos also made the AFLPA’s 22Under22 team of the year. His form will likely come with a little pay rise, which will only add to the complex list-management decisions currently facing the club, but one the Pies would surely make room to accommodate.
Josh Daicos is a talent on the rise.
Age: 20 Games: 1 Contract: End of 2022
The father-son prospect will be hoping for better luck next year after suffering a season-ending arm injury on debut this year. The promising forward kicked a goal and looked lively against Hawthorn in July but landed awkwardly and did not return this season. If fit next year, he will put pressure on Mason Cox in the forward line.
Age: 20 Games: 2 Contract: End of 2022
Been a frustrating couple of years for the highly-rated Murphy. Made his AFL debut late in 2018; had his 2019 derailed by injury and just could not force his way into a settled backline this year. There are no concerns about where the Pies view him in their future, having re-signed as recently as March for an additional two years. “The future is theirs to write but right now Cal (Brown), Tyler (Brown) and Nathan are seen as important to what is next for Collingwood,” Magpie list manager, Ned Guy, said at the time.
Age: 26 Games: 37 Contract: Out of contract
Played only one match this year – Round 11 against Adelaide – in what was his first game in more than two years since breaking his leg in a collision with a goalpost against GWS in early 2018. Broomhead has unfortunately battled injury issues all his career. The Pies face the tough decision of how much longer they can keep the talented but often-sidelined forward on the list.
Age: 24 Games: 89 Contract: Out of contract
One of the best defenders in the game and one of the most important signatures Collingwood has secured this off-season. Moore was out of contract but re-signed with the Magpies on Tuesday after another brilliant season in which he made the All-Australian side. He led the Pies for defensive one-on-one wins (61) and missed only one match. When last quizzed publicly about his contract status in August, Moore declared he “absolutely” wanted to stay at Collingwood.
Age: 21 Games: 11 Contract: Out of contract
Didn’t have much luck on the injury front this year. Had a delayed start to the season with an ankle injury and then suffered a hamstring setback late in the campaign. It leaves him facing an uncertain future, having played only one match in each of the past two seasons after nine in his debut 2018 campaign.
Age: 27 Games: 137 Contract: Until end of 2022
Quieter year by his standards, not having quite the impact of past seasons in the front half of the ground, especially on the scoreboard. The key to Collingwood challenging again next season will be for Hoskin-Elliott to find the potency of his 2018 season in which he kicked 42 goals, offered greater pressure and generally found more of the footy.
Age: 27 Games: 23 Contract: Out of contract
Just like last year, Wills enters the off-season without his future sorted. Played all his eight matches this season before Round 12, but never quite grabbed his opportunity and was pushed out after the Pies were thrashed by Melbourne. The midfielder was made to wait until well after the season last year to receive his 2020 contract – even despite playing the last six matches of the 2019 season, including two finals. It appears the Pies will make him sweat again as they assess their list heading into 2021.
Age: 19 Games: 0 Contract: Until end of 2021
The small defender is still waiting for his debut after landing at the club at pick 45 in last year’s draft. Fans would have been hoping to see him at some stage this year after his impressive performance in a pre-season scratch match against Carlton where he played well across halfback. But that debut will have to wait until at least next year.
Age: 19 Games: 0 Contract: Until end of 2021
The inside midfielder, taken at pick 40 in last year’s national draft from South Warrnambool, is yet to make his AFL debut, but showed enough promise in the early scratch matches to give hope that he was in contention to replace Scott Pendlebury when the Pies skipper injured his quad before the West Coast match. Would be looking to make his debut next year.
Age: 22 Games: 21 Contract: Until end of 2021
Injuries put the brakes on Sier’s ability to push into the line-up, but he would have hoped for more than three games this year. A quad setback against Adelaide in Round 11 effectively kept him sidelined until the eve of finals. By the time he was fit, he couldn’t get back into the side. Sier has plenty of upside, but if he can’t get regular game time ongoing at Collingwood, surely there would be a suitor out there looking for a strong-bodied midfielder with inside grunt. There would be a few teams who wouldn’t mind him.
Age: 24 Games: 116 Contract: Until end of 2022
Maynard had the best season of his career, playing all 19 matches to a brilliant level down back that earned him selection in the All-Australian squad. Having elevated himself into the top bracket of defenders with his safe hands and pinpoint left foot. Leading the Pies for rebound-50s (72), intercept possessions (118) and total metres gained (7368), he was probably unlucky to not make the final AA team.
Age: 30 Games: 187 Contract: Until end of 2021
Collingwood was rock solid in defence most of the year – just imagine if they had Howe too. Even without Howe, the Pies ranked among the best defences in the league, but they missed his intercepting prowess and his organisation – and that ultimately hurt their ability to rebound. Howe ruptured his PCL in June and fell short in his bid to return for the finals. He would have been particularly handy against a Geelong side that just punctured holes in the Collingwood backline in the semi-final. In the smallest of sample sizes (just four matches), he was already looking worthy of an All-Australian defender.
Age: 18 Games: 4 Contract: Until end of 2021
Ruscoe played four matches between Rounds 10-13, showing lively promise in attack and hitting the scoreboard with 5.4 in those games despite playing not even 70 per cent game time. He proved quite a handy choice at pick 55 in last year’s draft. But we’re not sure who attracted the main headlines this year: Ruscoe or his mum! The draftee made his debut in Round 10 against Sydney, but his mum missed his first goal after admitting she ducked out the back of the house for a quick smoke.
Age: 20 Games: 3 Contract: Out of contract
Got of taste of AFL life this year as one of a host of debutants for the Pies, providing a spark across half forward in his three games between Rounds 6-8. The Fiji-born Bosenavulagi joined the Pies at the end of the 2018 season as part of the Next Generation Academy.
Age: 27 Games: 58 Contract: Out of contract
Mihocek apparently has a three-year deal on the table from Collingwood but the sticking point appears to be the dollar figure attached to it. Mihocek did his claims for a pay rise no harm with a timely three-goal effort against West Coast in the elimination final thriller. Mihocek has kicked 90 goals in his 58 games across three seasons. It is an important contract for Mihocek given, at 27, it will likely be his best chance to cash in on his output. Mihocek is jostling with the likes of uncontracted teammates Jordan De Goey, Darcy Moore and Josh Daicos for every spare dollar in the Pies’ salary cap over the coming weeks. If he is squeezed out, there will be a club willing to add someone who consistently hits the scoreboard. No doubt they have already been in touch.
Age: 20 Games: 0 Contract: Out of contract
A tough year to be coming out of contract for the Irish recruit. Tohill returned home during the initial COVID shutdown period before returning. Tohill showed some promise as a utility in the VFL last year, kicking seven goals in 12 games, but could not crack a senior game this season. He has plenty of interests outside of football, including dreams of a medical career, but in January made it clear footy was his immediate priority: “I’m not an experiment. I want to play AFL football, it’s why I’m here.”
Age: 27 Games: 21 Contract: Out of contract
Played 13 matches this year, including the two finals, which should be enough to secure a new contract at the Pies. Didn’t have a huge finals series but it was clearly the defender’s best season. He took strides this year, when you consider that in both 2018 and 2019 he finished the home-and-away season in the side but was dropped both years for finals.
Age: 22 Games: 1 Contract: Out of contract
It was a long time coming, but Max Lynch received reward for effort and perseverance when the developing 200cm ruckman made his AFL debut against Brisbane last month. It had been a long build from being the 51st player selected in the rookie draft at the end of 2016 from the Murray Bushrangers. His form had been solid in scratch matches all season but the Pies’ big man stocks had kept him on the outer of selection.
Age: 29 Games: 69 Contract: Until end of 2021 after hitting contract trigger
Revived his career in the back end of the season after appearing on the brink midway through the year when he had issues with his vision and lost his spot in the team. He was recalled in Round 13 and found his spark, hitting a trigger clause for a new contract in the process. Cox took the most contested marks for Collingwood this year (23). But still, do he or the Pies explore a move? He was the hero of the elimination final against West Coast with three goals but, like many of his teammates, was missing against the Cats. Will be battling for his spot next year with Will Kelly, who suffered a nasty injury on debut and sat out the season.
Age: 20 Games: 1 Contract: Out of contract
Broke through for his AFL debut this year, picking up seven disposals in the Round 9 clash with Fremantle. But it was his only AFL match of the season. Keane, a 194cm defender, joined the Pies as a Category B rookie from Ireland ahead of the 2019 season. Keane was probably unlucky not to make his debut in 2019 – his intercept work stood out – and showed promising form in a pre-season game against Richmond this year. Yet to get a contract for next season.
Age: 23 Games: 0 Contract: Until end of 2021
The former Australian basketballer is yet to play a game, spending his first season at the club developing in training and scratch matches. The midfielder showed promising signs in a scrimmage hitout against Carlton, kicking three goals including a snap from about 40m out. The Pies rate his athleticism and adaptability. Captain Scott Pendlebury took him under his wing for early-morning workouts over summer.
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2020.10.12 01:53 boredCommentator JoJo's Bizarre OC Tournament #5 - Round 2 Match 10 - Bert and Emilie "Dread" Delacroix vs John "Jack" Aurel

The results are in for Match 8.
Agnes and Arpeggi, in their shrunken states, continued to fight, surrounded by the rising flames of their lilliputian tower, fists flying and Stand blows being taken one after the other.
“You… Callous mother fucker!” Arpeggi cursed, Agnes feeling the singe of a heat blast both from behind and from launched wood. “We’re not aiming for a massacre!”
“You’re not,” Agnes spat out, then, pulling a tab on the table, a massive geyser erupting and launching his so-called ally away, “I don’t give a fuck about this place, and we’re in a Stand battle… And it’s all worthless, greedy scumbags watching! Let the fire spread! Let this place hit the ground so they see what someone with style can do!”
“You heard it here, folks! Agnes talked you all down… C’mon, where’s your passion! Don’t run out and away, c’mon! And here I thought you cared y’had money ridin’ on this…”
Conqueror Worm’s laughs reverberated as Glitch and William found themselves cooled by Ocean Eyes’ nectar, which found itself dissolving quickly but, for the moment, a functional barrier for the injured fighters, watching and listening to what happened.
“Th… They’re fighting each other up there…” William remarked, physically looking as though he was straining to force Ocean Eyes not to hurry up there and tear them a new one. “Glitch, we don’t have time to keep the flames at bay and call up another KST, and if I let Ocean Eyes up there it’ll eviscerate them, and-”
“What’s this? The kid is holdin’ back, afraid of his own Stand! Hey, kid, don’t hate this part of yourself! Ocean Eyes, it ain’t your enemy, that’s a part of you, what makes you special, so don’t be at odds with it! Embrace what it says, because it’s what YOU’RE sayin’!”
William was speechless, there, but his companion was less inactive in that time. Tiger “Glitch” Ricky simply hissed, then, her and her Stand hopping up out of the flames in an effort to brutally, mercilessly pounce upon the self-styled villain and the ally he had come to blows with. If they moved fast, they could bite through that shitty little twink’s neck right now!
Arpeggi grit his teeth, scrambling to find his footing as he witnessed the pouncing cat-stand, finding it hard to breathe among all the burning rubble, fading fast then.
Is… Is this how it ends..? Crushed and mangled as some lowlife’s burnt-up game piece..?
“And it looks like Glitch is about to take it! Shout-outs to Tigran, the only real one here, watchin’ through the fire and the flames!”
“Heh… This is just a bit of a sweat,” Tigran Sins answered, stifling a cough, “I’ll see all seven of these bastards run through games until they’re all-”
Arpeggi didn’t hear what was said next, only hearing his own defiant heartbeat. If he didn’t act fast, Agnes would die… Good riddance, right? But… Ugh, no, even scum like him, they don’t deserve…
He clutched at NEXT LEVEL until his fingers bled, and Glitch and William, both looking at him past their Stands waiting to attack, made curious sounds as yet more crumbled away.
And then, there was white. An overwhelming cascade of baking soda burst from NEXT LEVEL, smothering the flames rapidly as an obscured form zipped up the tower again, grabbing Agnes and hurrying away from the thrown-off Glitch.
“You… Why did you…” Agnes rubbed baking soda out of his eyes, coughing and looking at the form of Arpeggi in this new Stand. “Motherfucker…”
“I have responsibility over even a scumbag like you… You tailed me here, and I’m not gonna let you die and escape responsibility easy.” He turned, then, to William and Glitch, his new form revealed. “Now, actually help me, follow my lead, and I’ll kick your ass later. We need to survive this-”
All four of the fighters, then, felt themselves grow rapidly, their combined weight so close together crushing the table they were on, much as a nearby tabletop wargame that had been setup found itself buckling under the weight of Metra, Oh No, the Black Angel, and their motorcycle.
“Welp,” Worm said with a bemused laugh, holding up the slumped body of Tigran. “Your fire couldn’t hurt him, but smoke inhalation sure could! I guess that means…”
“The winner is FIRE, with a score of 65!”
Category Winner Point Totals Comments
Popularity Graveyard Shift 12-17
Quality Graveyard Shift 19-20 Reasoning
JoJolity BADD GUYS 24-18 Reasoning
Conduct Tie 10-10
With no more reason to fight, it got really awkward and everyone just sort of ran out of Heartache Casino. William Eyelash, recalling his stand and lost in thoughts, was the last to leave, joining the others in leaping single-file out a window into a nearby alley.
There, though everyone else seemed tensely uninvolved, the Black Angel’s motorcycle revved, and she stared down Worm as he safely stowed Tigran inside his Stand-body, leaning on his golden sword.
“There’s still something I need, Jones… I’ll run you down to get it if it means saving the city.”
Worm laughed, gesturing with his sword. “This thing? You’re huntin’ me down for this… Ah! I see! You’re tryin’ to do that.” Callously, he tossed it, so suddenly they fumbled with it in hand. “Here ya go, then! I don’t much want what Jack Aurel’s cookin’ up either!”
The Angel, worn and exhausted, stammered. “I… You just… But…”
“Lookin’ forward to killin’ me, huh? Get in line, kid… Or waste your time right now! See, nobody here is botherin’, they can all read that it’d be a waste when I’m in such good health! City’s countin’ on you, yeah, and you won’t get many opportunities for bein’ called a hero as an adult. Make it count!”
Then, before anyone could say more, he darted through a nearby wall, waving William and the rest off with a, “Ah, we safely may trust to its gleaming and be sure it will lead us aright!”

“Asshole.” The Angel turned away, strapping the sword to their back and driving away. “Thank you, all of you. I’ll take this from here… Get yourselves help.”
There was silence as they drove into the sky, scarf billowing before them, and then Agnes started cackling. “You’re all fucking morons… If I didn’t burn that place down, we wouldn’t have gotten away, and some wannabe with no style would be going down as Los Fortuna’s worst villain! Fucking bow and grovel, Jack Aurel’s grave is gonna say ‘spat on by Agnes!’”
Nobody had the energy to dignify that with a response.
An anticlimax is leading into a super-climax, and meanwhile, an ant-loving little boy and an aid worker are racing through their dreamscapes, with a day left to vote there.
What is, as of the 1990s, ‘Capital Island,’ was the epicenter of Los Fortuna’s founding several hundred years ago, in the midst of a bloody Stand User conflict, many militias clashing for superiority, in the 1680s, starting with the death of the era’s own Andrew Tiffany, the missionary William Mandolin, and towards its end, knocking people into their senses through the awakening of exactly what he had tried to warn them of.
A grand T-Rex by the name of Megalomania had survived, dormant, underneath the land through the might of its Stand, coated in a goldlike substance, and awoken in a deep rage by the conflict of the locals. Megalomania was met in battle by a man out of place named Aaron Bruno, ‘Sir Aurel’ to most, and Memory Management, and when slain, crumbled where it stood into a pile of bones, feet firm in the ground.
Los Fortuna’s natural history museum was built around this monster’s remains, and Sir Aurel would turn its golden coat into a ceremonial weapon. The power these symbols were imbued with, even with their old purposes lost, were of great importance to the city’s stability.
Outside Los Fortuna’s Natural History Museum, Early Evening
In the blink of an eye, the attention of everyone within Los Fortuna had been turned to the natural history museum. That made sense, of course - considering the looming dark clouds containing the ghosts of the dead within them, the scuffles of the stand users outside of the building, and the vague knowledge that a ritual with the purpose of destroying fate itself was currently being performed within it, it would be out of the ordinary for people to not be paying it any attention. Even those who weren’t stand users that were up to date with the situation were drawn to it by the unusual level of activity surrounding it, from emergency services and VALKYRIE forces alike.
And then there was Bert. They were invested in the whole situation, of course - keeping up with the latest reality-breaking ancient rituals was the least that a wannabe god like them could do. Their status as an observer did raise a few eyebrows - they’d had to shake off both emergency service workers and VALKYRIE forces, who’d both taken the time to try and encourage Bert to leave the area for their own safety, clearly underestimating Bert’s own prowess.
Within the chaos, one could be excused for not failing to notice the drones Bert had been sending around to overhear and oversee it all. First, they paid attention to the chief of security at VALKYRIE, Ugo McBasie, who seemed to be getting interviewed by someone from the Fortuna Hermod, an ODIN-owned news publication (not their usual guy at scenes like this… Wonder what happened to him). Bert had heard that the man was a violent and irresponsible meathead who’d caused plenty of trouble in the past, but he seemed to be keeping a thin veil of professionalism for now. However, Bert couldn’t help but notice a young man in a blue aviator cap standing a few meters behind the reporter and staring daggers at him, perhaps keeping him in check somehow, occasionally piping in for comment about how it was all they could do to surround the place and wait for an opening if they didn’t want a meat grinder on their hands.
Meanwhile, Los Fortuna’s own city council chairman, Raymond Delwin Shimizu was discussing something of note with someone else, who seemed to have just finished an interview of his own. Bert didn’t recognize him, but the interviewer had called him “Chief Prosecutor Cavallo”, and she seemed as if she knew what she was talking about, so Bert opted to believe her. The interviewer, Jillian Something-or-other, had been running all over the scene, trying to get interviews alongside her oversized cameraman Bert recognized as having been that really huge cop who used to hang around Aurelio a lot of the time not successfully doing his job. Not worth Bert’s time.
Cavallo scratched his head in frustration. “Chairman, please tell me that you’ve made progress of some kind here...”
Ray shook his head. “Not much. That stand user that’s working alongside Jack Aurel, Akiko Mizushima, is making it impossible to get in - anyone we do send in is as good as gone. We haven’t even been able to get Admiral Pineapples out. Judging by your demeanor, I assume that the board hasn’t made much progress either.”
“No, doesn’t seem like it.” Cavallo let out a long sigh. “Every day, it’s just more and more work… Now we’re stuck having to deal with this. If nothing’s done, the board’s thinking it might very well cause a disaster unmatched by… Well, anything but the earthquake from thirty years ago. Something like this, bending the rules of the city, and breaking free from it… Los Fortuna’s probably not going to let that slide easily.” He shook his head. “Where the hell is the mayor through all this? Watching anime at home or something, probably.”
Ray remained silent for a bit, thinking to himself. “Well, we’ve got emergency services ready to act for now, and we’re working on evacuating any susceptible areas, but it only works so much.” Before Cavallo could respond, another reporter came up to Raymond, ready with a batch of questions for him. “Well, Cavallo, our work isn’t done yet, so let’s get to it. Saving as many people as possible here should be our utmost priority.” And with that, the two men parted ways for the time being.
Having listened enough, Bert began thinking to themselves. This was a tricky situation - they clearly couldn’t get in as is, but they certainly wanted to. Learning more about the situation at hand would improve their knowledge of the mechanisms holding Los Fortuna together, and gaining control over the ritual somehow would certainly be a feat befitting of a god such as them.
Bert stood in front of the museum entrance, taking another look at the chaos in front of them and continuing to think about the next step they’d take. So many different possibilities, so little time. They thought, and thought, and then one of their drones’ eyes glanced upon someone familiar - a blue haired, red eyed woman wearing a mask, trying to blend in and clearly resenting it, skulking around the perimeter of the area as though she, too, wished to enter.
Yet despite her efforts, Bert recognized her.
“Emilie ‘Dread’ Delacroix!” They declared it loudly, thoughtlessly so, approaching her with a hand raised. “Are you perhaps looking to find a crevasse through which to enter that place as well? It’s quite fortified, isn’t it?”
“Hm?” She wasn’t bothered by the way Bert drew attention to her, still wearing her same very extra outfit under the also quite extra hooded dark robe she was using to blend in. “Ah, pardon me dearly for having failed to notice you… You are Bert, from that incident where we fought on equal terms, yes?”
“I am that same Bert, Emilie ‘Dread’ Delacroix, yes. Though I doubt I could be much mistaken for others…”
“We are both quite conspicuous individuals, yes,” Dread said, taking the conversation into a nearby alley before VALKYRIE goons on the scene could prove it was her, “but no, I’m not terribly nonplussed about my abilities to infiltrate that place… Simply, I am attempting to assess the probability by which my approach itself, through the barricades erected, might occur. If your intentions happen to be helping me sneak through, then it is simply not necessary on any fronts… I have formulated a plan now.”
Dread, now appearing alone, walked through that alley curiously, looking around her and beginning to see her opportunity of approach - there appeared to be a side door there, at which a certain fish-themed hero was sitting outside, looking, Dread knew from their DMs, at funny images of her wife atop the T-Rex skull in the museum.
Yes, certainly, this would be-
“Whoa, hey, it’s you!”
Damnable. Had she been spotted, or..?
No, no, wait. The one speaking, a man also in this alleyway who smelled of cannabis, holding what looked like a GAP bag, was speaking to someone on the opposite side of it, disembarking from a sportbike and handing it to the rider, who was wearing a very ornate-looking golden sword which Dread had sworn she’d seen somewhere before.
“Thanks,” the Black Angel told this young man, accepting the bag and producing its contents - a Roman helmet and black bird-looking tokusatsu cosplay? “Green couldn’t make it himself, huh?”
“I made it,” the guy said, pointing proudly to himself, before blinking. “Oh, you mean like… Showing up. Yeah, no, there was a thing with a mammoth coming down from the mountains, he’s helping East deal with that. Feel like lighting up before you go in? It’ll take the edge off..!”
The rider removed their helmet, coincidentally perfectly timed for the strawberry-blonde with pale blue eyes to stare him down incredulously. “About a million people live on this island, Weedboy. Now is not the time…” The Angel ducked into the nearby building to change, finishing, “shit, yeah, it looks just like the Flying Men do… uh. you should get out of here now.”
“You kidding?” He asked. “I don’t wanna bow out right before it gets good! That’s, like, saying I think you can’t do it!”
Well, these two appeared distracted, so Dread would continue along her way, walking right past them and towards the blockade, towards where Jo was sitting casually, only to be interrupted by-
“Holy shit, it really is her! Stop right there, Dread!”
Oh boy, here we go. This had been happening more lately, since a somewhat frustrating individual went and opened his big mouth about her dangers on Bifrost. Turned out that the head of VALKYRIE was literally in the server, so now she had a bounty on her head after a modicum of investigation into her after that public statement, and her casual admittance thereof!
Two armored guards were pointing guns at her as she stood there, unfazed.
“Don’t come any closer!” One of them, an older woman, said, turning to her younger partner and quickly telling him, “if she approaches, open fire. She’ll eat you alive if not!”
“This again, are you being serious?” Dread was less than pleased. “I am evil, and a murderer, unrepentantly so, yes, but I do not eat people. This rumor is being so blown out of proportion that I find it quite tiresome.”
“F-fuck off and die!” The younger moved to fire his weapon, only to realize there was a knife through him, catching the gun by the trigger after running from his shoulderblade to his fingertip.
Dread didn’t need the help, but like a true friend, Kimijo Kaneko offered it anyway
“Wh-what the-” The older woman cursed as her partner was cut open and dropped. “Fucking useless moron! HEY, EVERYONE, KANEKO BROKE RANK AND DREAD IS HERE TO! NOW’S OUR CHANCE TO-”
The distraction, then, was all it took for Dread to take her first kill of the day. Of course it was fine. She read the news, she knew how these VALKYRIE people were literally at war with poor people.
“Sh-shit, those people just died! More VALKYRIE corpses, and Jo again..!” The stoner declared in the background, and the Black Angel, now dressed exactly like the birdmen many had seen before, paused in her efforts to run past the opening created by Jo breaking formation.
Nobody could hear it or see her lips move, but she apologized under her breath, clenching her fist, but the disguise had worked. 32 Footsteps, the primary guard which would warp away anyone who tried to enter, apparently had instructions to allow in anybody dressed like this, yet none of the intended recipients of this deliberate loophole made their way in.
“Dread, hello, friend!” Jo exclaimed in high spirits, sheathing her knife, but still speaking quietly as she hurried back into place, “good to see you!”
“Yes, it is most certainly fortuitous for us to encounter one another…” Dread agreed, walking and talking with her as the pair were watched in horror. “By any chance, may I come into this museum? I am absolutely curiously intrigued by what is going on within here…”
A VALKYRIE sniper was taking aim at Dread, then, as she entered, muttering under her breath, “got a shot lined up… I can take her out, and Jo a second later! Two bastards out of the way, at least, and-”
“Wait,” the youth in a blue aviator hat and goggles, speaking as VALKYRIE’s tactician, instructed, “hold your fire.”
“Sir, she just made one of our senior officers fall into rotten pieces! She’s chatting it up with this fish-bitch like it’s nothing!”
“I know, and I’m appalled too, but I think…” The Blue Kid paused, contemplatively. “No, I know it. Dread is here to defeat John Aurel, just like the Black Angel.”
Spinning and pivoting through the air, “Lou” Reed, dressed like a dark, sixth Flying Man, landed atop the skull of the t-rex, which had apparently been adorned in a cute little pirate hat. It made for a fine vantage point, then, to look all over the halls of the Natural History museum, noting one, two, three, four spots, grotesque and morbid statues Remix had apparently erected of ghostly abominations.
She was exhausted, injured from the three-way skirmish she, Metra, and Oh No had been forced to undergo and riding like hell to get here, but she had made it this far, and others had managed to get in too. She couldn’t choke now.
Seven minutes… I’ll just have to destroy those, and be back here in seven minutes. Easy enough… I don’t think I’ve been-
“Green, Orange, and Purple… I don’t believe a ‘Flying Man Black’ was ever mentioned, nor that any of the brothers were into swords.”
Shit. That voice, too… Lou turned around, then, seeing someone standing behind her, a man with long dark hair, brandishing a hammer and looking up at her.
John “Jack” Aurel.
“Even if you are what you appear to be and not in disguise, you should realize that you aren’t welcome here. There’s nothing to be done in this museum worth dying for, and no way to accomplish any more foolish goal if I were to raise attention now. Care to waste some of the time you have left and explain?”
Of course this would happen. Lou removed her faux-beak, helmet, and goggles, staring down at him as her hair billowed in the ceiling fans’ wind. “Jack… I’ve come here to put a stop to this.”
“You’re that kid who’s always running around, huh?” Jack frowned, twirling his hammer. “I hear what you talk about through the grapevine… About how we’re all victims of fate, forced against each other by Gravity. That Stand Users are always going to be molded by this… You understand it too. You understand that people like us prey upon the weak, that it’s in our natures and our place in the world. I want to remove myself from that… Remove these people from that, and atone for what I’ve done.”
“By killing even more people! There’s no way they’ll get everyone away from your blast radius, and you haven’t even given them the chance to!” Lou protested. “It doesn’t have to be this way… Don’t say this is how it has to be! We can save this place, free everyone from gravity, without barreling towards its destruction! I don’t want to kill you, Jack. I want you to stop this crazy, self-indulgent crap and help me do something real!”
“You think everyone deserves this? That Stand Users will simply reform without this? The cycle has started, and it will push to the end even if the wave guiding it fades away completely… Bastards, the lot of us, and I don’t intend to run from what I’ve done. I’ll give you one chance to run away, kid… the worst I can call you is naive.”
Lou drew the golden blade, seeing Jack wince as he clearly recognized its significance, all as her Stand appeared behind her. “We both know I can’t do that, even if I can barely keep my balance up here. And hey, maybe I will die here… Maybe I am fated not to see this through. But then, someone is gonna finish this for me! Your security is already compromised!”
“Fascinating… And you are utterly convinced that, should it work, those he’s slain to commence this ritual to begin with will return outside the city?”
“Remix is full of himself,” Jo said, nodding quietly, “but he and Jack, they researched a lot… Akiko and I, for helping this finish, we can finally go home! Be done with the bad city…”
“She has made this place remarkably impregnable,” Dread agreed, thinking aloud, “anyone who waltzes in waltzes into her backrooms…”
“Unless they have a ‘pass!’” A voice from within Dread’s cloak spoke, and as Jo raised her knife at it in defense, the pure-white, terribly contorted form of Bert tumbled onto the ground, stretching and reshaping into their typical humanlike shape.
“Don’t worry, don’t worry, they are fine, with me!” Dread assured Jo, frankly thankful to have that weight literally off her back. Bert was very light, but even then it was hard to walk carrying someone, let alone not give it away. “We have… Some history, and so I thought I might as well indulge Bert’s request to see this place as well. I apologize for not mentioning earlier, but it was quite dire getting in here past guards attacking us.”
Jo didn’t seem to mind, continuing to lead the pair around, even passing Akiko who was casually, distractedly reading some manga while in a bit of a pirate mood.
They also passed by another scene, slightly more concerning, of an injured old man in a Hawaiian Shirt, close by the frontmost entrance of the place and clutching himself as his fleet of four Stand-starships remaining fired at Remix, who guarded against it with ghost-objects while a Flying Man Red tried to find an opening to strike.
“You’ve been at this for hours, old man, die already! You have no place in the world I mean to birth from your bloodied, pulped remains!”
Pineapples stood, then, leaning against the wall, trying not to show weakness.
“I think that guy is going to lose, at this rate… It’s a shame, too,” Bert, the loudmouth again, remarked. “He might have been a worthwhile pawn in wrestling control away from this operation.”
Dread, Jo, Remix, and Red all gave Bert simultaneous incredulous looks, all in completely unique ways.
Jo drew her knife again, about to transform, only to dodge out of the way of the injured ‘Lou’ Reed, blacked out, helmetless, being knocked away and into the floor, the shock of which made her rise quickly, feeling around. “Where’s the- Shit!” As she sat up, then, feeling around for the saber no longer in her possession, she noticed that she was smack in the middle of something else here.
Hurriedly, she rolled away, standing herself up and looking to the injured Admiral. “You… You’re one of those MFAs, right? How did you-?”
Weakly, he gestured to Remix. “He brought me here in a damned urn! I’ve been fending them off to buy others in the museum time to escape… Everyone in this hall here and Jack, those are the only ones left in the building, minus masses and masses of ghosts. They’re harmless, though… Don’t worry about them attacking unless that guy takes them.”
“I see…” Lou, then, smiled sadly, clutching her bloodied suit. She looked to Bert and Dread, then, moving to get between them and Jack’s incredulous accomplices. “You said you wanted to take him out, right? I overheard…”
“Well, Bert has let yet another cat out of the bag,” Dread admitted, “indeed, I came here with the intent of dethroning Jack Aurel before he had a chance to complete his little ritual. Few others would even be able to get in here.”
“So that’s my role, then…” Lou smiled, then, sighing, ducking out of the way of the Flying Man sending a kick her way, a gauntlet-clad arm emerging from her body, grabbing his ankle hard, and swinging him into the Jo who was shocked to hear Dread say that. “I can’t do anything about Jack… Too fucked up from that ED match…” She grinned, then, mouth bleeding as she stared Remix down. “But this old man and I can at least keep these assholes from interfering!”
Dread, then, watched passively as the five erupted into battle, she and Bert curious about what was to come as, from each hand, the Stand which emerged seemed to fire odd projectiles at their foes. “The ‘I’ll hold them off…’ You’re styling yourself as some sort of exceptional hero, aren’t you?” She seemed amused by that, the irony of their cooperation. “I’m evil, you know… And Bert, at least, is morally ambiguous. But if you’ve settled on putting the city in our hands, have you any advice?”
Over the sounds of laser fire, Lou quickly found time to answer, “yeah, there’s… I brought this golden ‘saber’ with me, and it must’ve fallen somewhere by the T-Rex… In, in a bit over six minutes from now, this ritual of theirs is gonna go through and rip this island open. Before that… They have these ‘failsafe’ statue things, and…” She took a breath, retracting and wincing from a blow her Stand had taken. “Look, I don’t have time to explain it, but you need to smash those up first! They’re there, made up of spirits fused together, to keep these guys safe from the consequences of their own actions… To ensure their safety, and at the same time act as a ‘failsafe’ for the ritual. Gives you the ‘power’ over it, too, in the way that right now Jack himself does… That’s important to stopping it. So you need to smash them first, and then, right as the time passes for the ritual, when the skull of the T-Rex in the center starts to split open and glow and its mouth starts gushing water… Embed the sword into the opening in its forehead, right as it starts to shape. That’s the only way to prevent this at this stage!”
“The forehead particularly, hmm?” Bert asked, pacing curiously and avoiding a cross split attack from Red, who barreled into Lou and was barely blocked. “Why there, per se? Why nowhere else on the thing?”
“Ngh..!” Lou grunted, saved from a follow-up by Pineapples. “I dunno, that’s just where you have to do it!”
“Black Angel… That’s what you’re called, yes?” Dread smiled, turning away. “You will be thanked for this victory… Try to live long enough to witness it firsthand, won’t you?”
“I’d… I’d love to,” Lou answered, smiling sadly, “for five years now, when I first learned there was anything worth a damn in this world, I’ve wanted to protect that… The dark pit of despair that was the first thirteen years of my life, and even so much since, I’d love nothing more than a world where no person is fated beyond impossible odds to suffer that.” She grew serious, then, raising her voice. “Go, now! Leave this to us!”
Bert and Dread approached the T-Rex, impressed at the amazing height and Akiko’s snazzy pirate duds upon the thing, the lab-grown being whistling with impression. “A T-Rex lived ‘til three-hundred years ago… Preserved whole, in this city. It’s astonishing, isn’t it, Emilie ‘Dread’ Delacroix?”
“A curious anomaly,” Dread agreed, examining it from afar, even noticing that alleged sword in the distance. “I wonder why it survived that long, so far after its brethren…”
“It’s because it was a ‘Stand User.’”
Jack approached from the same room in which Dread spotted glints of the golden saber, announcing his presence with that. “That was its ‘fate…’ A savage, cunning animal, ripped from where it belonged. to be a problem to solve and squabble over, to found this city on its literal bones.”
“John ‘Jack’ Aurel… You’d best stand down.” Bert, helpfully, started. “You cannot beat us… Even if we only had seconds to overcome you, I would be too much for you to handle!”
“No, he’s going to fight, I know it.” Dread, meanwhile, prepared Joywave, staring him down with a pointed, grinning lethality. “I suppose introductions are not necessary, with how Bert here loves to say my full name… I am not one to make things curt or brief, John, but consider yourself toppled, usurped, bloodied and dead.”
“The lab accident with a God complex and by far the worst, most grisly of Jo’s friends…” With no real amusement, no happiness in his eyes, Jack chuckled, looking them over. “Of course, right at the end, my final test isn’t some hero… It’s exactly the worst kind of Stand User! The apex predators that I’ve preyed upon, that stand in the way of saving everyone who’s died to reach this point! Of course it would be someone like me to gain entry, wouldn’t it?”
“You speak with such confidence you’ll raise the dead…” Bert was curious. “Even if it costs more lives, such a thing is… That is the realm of gods, John ‘Jack’ Aurel.”
“Not today it’s not,” Jack answered, twirling his hammer in his hand. “Both of you… You’ve been driven here, standing in my way, as agents of ‘fate’ itself. Isn’t that the reason you were ‘lucky’ enough to pass through our defenses… Because you were meant to stand here, and you were meant to watch as every horrible, cruel thing you’ve done amounts to nothing in the face of these circumstances.”
He looks the two intruders over with sympathy for a moment, before steeling himself and clenching his weapon, Stand appearing behind him just as stone-faced. “You may be the puppet of something beyond your control, but you must understand that I can’t let you ruin the plan I’ve bet my life on. I bear you no anger as people, but your role here is something I can’t ignore. I’ll waste our time no longer in arguing ethics, let there be no apologies or restraint until this is settled.”
The other conspirators had been instructed not to intervene if it came to this point, even if it risked the collapse of everything they had worked for. Not if it threatened lives. An enemy to make it this far was deserving of being dealt with reasonably. As the critical moment drew near, Jack readied all the fury that months of waiting had stored within him, and accepted that this may very well be his final true fight.
“Five minutes on the dot now, until ‘that time…’ If what the Black Angel said is true.” Dread looked to Bert. “What do you say we demonstrate incontrovertibly to John exactly how confused he truly is?”
(Image credit to CaptainSpooky27!)
Location: A part of the Los Fortuna’s Natural History Museum. The area here is 75 by 75 meters with each tile being 5 by 5 meters. The ceilings here are 8 meters tall. The yellow tiles are the hallways and the green and purple tiles form the different rooms.
The white tiles have ritual shrines built on those areas. There are 7 shrines total and will be explained in further detail in the additional information.
The players start at the south of the map and Jack starts at the top of the map as represented by their tokens. The walls are represented by thicker borders and the dotted lines are the doorways.
At the top of the map, in the pink tile and yellow symbols, is the Golden Sword. It is currently pinned under 2 meters of rubble.
Each wing of the museum houses an exhibit, in the center is the main attraction a large T-Rex in display as denoted by the large grey circle.
The other exhibits are denoted by the letter on them:
  • G: The geologic exhibit, displaying and teaching about different rock formations and types
  • O: The two Oceanic exhibits, displaying the marine life and seabed of Los Fortuna.
  • C: The climatography exhibit, displaying the different temperature maps and features across Los Fortuna.
  • A: The Agricultural exhibit, displaying the various fruits and crops grown around Los Fortuna.
  • T: The two Taxidermy exhibits, displaying a wide range of animals in roped off and glass displays.
  • E:The Entomology exhibit, displaying photos and models of various bugs.
Goal: For the players, desecrate all the shrines and, when time runs out, have at least one of you, living and conscious, at the T-Rex with the golden sword in hand! For Jack, make sure the players don’t stop your ritual before it goes off!
The match will last exactly five minutes, unless of course players are dead before then. It doesn’t end just because players reach the goal.
Additional Information:
The shrines are 2 meter tall marked wood and metal structures, each having an strange carve effigy sitting in the center of them. In order to properly desecrate a shrine the players can do one of a few things, destroy the shrine outright, deface all the carvings made into the shrine, or destroy the effigy hidden within the shrine.
After destroying or defacing a shrine, the ghosts of the dead will begin harassing the players - three ghosts will move towards the player responsible for destroying the shrine (even in a situation where the stands are responsible: the ghosts will target Bert if a Perfect Hair minion destroys a shrine, and same for if anything affected by Joywave does so). These aren't strong, having flat 222 physicals and being partially see-through, but will increase in numbers as more and more shrines are destroyed. Strong enough hits can phase them out of existence, but they'll respawn ten seconds after at the spot that they previously were. They will go directly towards the players and can phase through any walls or objects that may be in their paths (but not out of any attacks), grabbing onto the players and trying to gang up on them once they're close enough to do so, dealing minor damage.
Team Combatant JoJolity
Red Carpet Rennaisance Emilie "Dread" Delacroix "Wow! It's a hand drawn original color illustration!" You’re a cultured woman, and this museum might very well end up being wiped off of the face of the earth quite soon, so you need to make the most of it while you still can! Make sure to visit and appreciate the various exhibits on display here! (Character Specific)
Suburban Regalia Bert "What a terrible person. If I wrote about someone like you, none of my readers would like it." So this man is playing at god, trying to control life, death, and fate themselves? What foolishness! Clearly, only you can do such things, and you do them best! Over the course of the strategy, prove your superiority to this “Jack Aurel“ and take him down a notch! (Character Specific)
??? Jack Aurel "Where the hell did you go?! Come out, you fucker!" It's now or never. This is the culmination of all of your plans, and failing is absolutely not an option here. During the fight, hold nothing back, and make sure to thoroughly defeat your opponents so that no one and nothing will ever stand in your way again!
(Jack sheet plain text version)
Link to the Official Player Spreadsheet
Link to Match Schedule
As always, if you would like to interact with the tournament community and be among the first to get updates for the tournament, please feel free to PM a member of our Judge staff for an invite to our Official Discord Server!
submitted by boredCommentator to StardustCrusaders [link] [comments]

2020.10.08 22:35 WizardMama Summary of today's Press Conference and Continuance of Phase 3


Gov. JBE
Hurricane Delta
Benjamin Schott


Will we see the extensive wind damage we saw with Laura
Gov. JBE
Addresses SW Louisiana


Question cannot hear
The People in 12 hotels are almost all Hurricane Laura evacuees where parishes are ordering evacuations they are setting up their own congregate shelters with COVID in mind and will have additional spacing, available PPE, and all restrictions in place. For example, at the mega-shelter in Alexandria, we will shelter them there until the shelter is full and then move them to other shelters we have in NW Louisiana. In the immediate aftermath of the storm, we will put them up as quickly as possible in non-congregate shelters (hotels). You never know how many people, especially when its voluntarily, how many will actually evacuate. Most will go to family and friends, others to hotels on their own, but you will still have some who need help evacuating. Those are the ones we typically receive, some drive up, some need transportation. All of this has to be coordinated. IF you are going to evacuate and shelter with people who are not your immediate household, whether they are relatives, or best friends you need to socially distance in those homes. The vast majority of COVID is spread by people who are related to one another or close neighbors or friends. Be careful so we can keep the case count down.
Are you concerned people will not take this storm seriously or evacuate
I'm always concerned that people in mandatory evacuation areas do not heed evacuations notices. They don't appreciate the gravity of the storm as it approaches. Sometime they will appreciate it but it comes late when it is dangerous for them to move. Encourage people while there is still time to get in the possible position o follow the guidance of their local officials and OEP directors who will have information on sheltering. I have not gotten a report this afternoon, but as of this morning, the flow of individuals who are coming to our shelters has been quite manageable. After Laura, the number of evacuees continued to increase for 2 weeks every night we were sheltering more people than the previous one. I do not believe we will see that with this particular storm, but you never know. We will move heaven and Earth to get people out of that congregate shelter as quickly as we possibly can so they can be safe during this COVID public health emergency.
Could not hear the question but from the answer, it seems like it could have been, Did you inform the Speaker and President of the extension of Phase 3
I had the opportunity to speak to the Speaker and the President and told them of much of the same data I was given by the Office of Public Health. We had the opportunity two weeks ago with Dr. Birx to give the Speaker, President, and other reps to go to a meeting where she was at where she recommends we continue these mitigation measures and talked about how important the next couple of months would be. I believe we did check those boxes adequately. I'm sure there are some legislatures that will tell you otherwise because they do not want any mitigation measures or restrictions in place so there is no communication you can have with them that will be satisfying. At the end of the day, we ware doing what is right and warranted under the circumstances for the public health of the people of Louisiana.

Closing Remarks

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2020.10.07 05:32 Alan-Prince [A4F] [A4A] [GM4Harem] To Study Xeno Kind

I’m looking for a partner who is willing to play multiple alien/monster girls (and maybe a human or two)while I play an initially shy scientist who progresses into a semi confident captain. Yes, I’m very much aware that asking someone to play multiple characters is an unfair request, but I’ll both take the role of GM and dedicated control the world, as well as be open to nearly any kinks or story angles you would be intrigued in.
Yes, the swarms of horny and sexy girls are definitely a delight. But I don’t want just that. I want each girl to be unique, both in their body, and in their mind. Own quirks, personality, goals, etc… I don’t want just mindless sex, I want to get to know these gals, interact with them in ways that don’t have to be lewd (though the lewd is definitely always fun). I enjoy slice of life rps and adventure rps.
I can play male or female at your preference. I prefer the dominant role, though I love playing a shy, submissive character at the start who grows to be more dominant.
Kinks I enjoy: strip fights, cute behavior, light bondage, harems, excessive foreplay. Admittedly I feel I’m fairly vanilla but I’m always open to experiment
Limits: excessive blood and gore, human waste, any characters under 18, cheating, futa, any dicks not belonging to my character
Alexander Patton (or if you want female, Alexandria who will be a little shorter but overall similarly physically built and ale personality) is a recently graduated biologist specializing in xeno physiology. He’s a shortish fella of 5’6 and on the scrawny side, adorned with short brown hair and bright blue eyes. He’s not physically fit, one could even say he’s weak and out of shape and wouldn’t be wrong. But he’s immensely intelligent in many regards, even outside of his biology focus. He’s a natural with many technologies, and often builds or custom crafts his own tools for his work. As it currently stands, he has no intention to augment his body (nor does he have the funds to do so even if he wanted) either through genetics or cybernetics or other possible options.
Personality wise, he’s a gentle soul who doesn’t dare wish to harm any living creature (he doesn’t like talking about the dissecting requirements in his classes). He’s also a heart of gold and always eager to help those in need. And is incredibly trusting. If you’ve made a good impression on him, it’ll take a lot for him to distrust you on anything... which frankly makes him rather gullible. He’s also rather cowardly as he’s never been in any kind of fight in his life, at least not one where he fought back. He’s a little shy with talking to girls, sometimes getting a stutter, though this disappears with familiarity with them. That stutter goes up to 11 when he’s utterly flustered or embarrassed by a situation, especially one of a sexual context.
What does he have? He’s a recent college grad, so... utterly ridiculous debt from college loans. So there’s that. But he did manage to save up enough money to finally buy himself a habitat space ship with barely enough left over to buy fuel, food, medical supplies, or really anything basic required to survive interstellar travel. Currently he’s on earth, just having bought his ship, going around the interstellar market area looking for advice, maps of space, getting clearance for his mission, and seeing if there’s an alien/human or two on earth willing to join his crew/be research subjects.
What is his grand goals? He wants to study every alien species in the galaxy, finding willing members of them to join him and pretty much live with him while he cares for their every need and studies how they live and react to certain conditions. What he doesn’t anticipate is how sexual that will get, how personally attached to each girl he’ll become, and how much danger he’ll be putting himself under.
On track with this goal, he has bought what is known as a ‘Habitat Ship,’ pretty much a huge cruiser with tons of large rooms (about the size of a city block for each room) that simulate conditions of various environments. These ships are typically used for zoos and such, but he wishes to use it to house the volunteers he’ll encounter. Often the rooms will be filled with large amounts of soil and foliage from the original planet, and even some small animals. Typically these ships come with robotic automated caretakers but Alex wasn’t able to afford that luxury. He also... only knows the bare bones basics of flying a ship of this size. Recruiting a proper pilot is definitely on his to do list.
What do I desire for his adventure? He’s going to accidentally throw himself into adventure after adventure as he continues on his goal. Finds an alien lady that’s more than eager to sign up and be housed by him? Turns out she’s being hunted by a criminal organization. Finds an undiscovered tribe of alien girls? Somehow, he’s now fighting their chief for ownership of the tribe. Simply flying through space and hanging out with the girls? Space pirates attack! Over time, he’s going to become more combat oriented and a bit more badass, though his core character will never change. On this note, he currently owns no weapons and has no combat training.
Galaxy wise, humanity has covered about 25% of the Milky Way galaxy. Individual countries still exist with decent degrees of independence and internal human wars still break out. But they all answer to the United Nations and work far more cooperatively than compared to today’s modern era. Earth is naturally the capital planet of the UN with all the original counties making their capitals remain there. But countries now own entire planets and even star systems, with border disputes a common issue.
And intelligent alien life has been discovered. Many species were discovered while they still inhabited a single planet, their technology anywhere from tribal to near space flight , though they’ve been rapidly acclimated into the the UN culture... supposedly. Many aliens have sound themselves delegated to second class civilians as humans, who still have a horrible amount of racism against other humans, now have xenophobia in large degrees even though such behaviors are condemned by most nations.
And there’s a few other species that have star nations that occupy decent chunks of the rest of the galaxy, their technology, specifically weaponry, far exceeding even the strongest of human tech. Between each bordering space nation is a required buffer of 3 star systems that neither side is allowed to colonize or claim... which naturally means pirates of all species constantly claim this space. Between these star nations, relationships are incredibly tense, both sides fearing war. The alien nations may have more power, but they’ve seen human history and been horrified by how brutal and creative humans are with even limited technology, and will concede humans are typically better strategists.
And further still, there’s still plenty of unexplored space, likely bristling with new species and adventures and who knows what else.
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2020.10.07 00:28 mamaseetaa Ways to be supportive towards epileptic partner without looking like I pity them (because I dont)

I (38f) have recently started seeing an amazing man (37m) and am falling head over heels for him. He does suffer from seizures (due to brain trauma from 2 separate accidents). He has been very up front about his condition, opening up about it on our first date. He is an amazing man, kind, sweet, thoughtful...honestly everything you would want in a partner. To me, his epilepsy is no more a deal breaker than the fact that I have 3 kids from a previous relationship. We each have the facts and a decision to make, either we are prepared to accept the other and take on what they bring, or we respectfully admit we can't and amicably go our separate ways. We recently spent the night together and most of the following day. This was our longest time spent together. We discussed the possibility of him having a seizure and some details of what to do if this should happen. Luckily, because he had 1 in the evening, and a cluster if 3 the next day. Based my description to him about what happened, leading up and during and the duration, they were all "small" ones. He (slowly) fell down, and had slight muscle jerks of his arms & legs, with rapid eye blinking. All lasted less than 1 minute each. He came to, groggy, not really able to speak, but slowly regained this, and unaware of what happened. I calmly explained he had a seizure and just sat with him. I know this will be a learning curve for me, but I am absolutely willing to take this on and be supportive to him a much and as best as I can. He, however, has suggested I walk away, stating with my own life, I have enough on my plate, and do not need this added stress from him. My question is to anyone in a relationship with someone who has epilepsy: how do you show your support to them without it coming off as pity, or "feeling sorry". I don't believe i have done this yet, but I also want to be over enthusiastic and start trying to be his nurse and overbearing. I just want him to know that I accept him for him, and that although experiencing his seizures can sometimes be scary (i have not been present for a Grand Mal), I will not be scared off by them.
TL:DR how to be supportive of epileptic boyfriend without showing pity, also not being overbearing
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2020.10.06 16:08 LarsMasters Moveset Concept for Fiona Mayfield

As an AH fighter, Homing Cancel is a main trait that can be done after charged ground normal B (standing & crouching), jump attacks & special/EX moves. Although that Multi Homing on jC > jC shouldn’t have cost 1 gauge like in original series.
CV: Maria Yamamoto (JP, reprised), Stephanie Sheh (EN, NEW; may share w/ Mai Natsume's)
Matching Partners: Noel, Hakumen, Tsubaki (Izayoi), Azrael, Kagura M., Celica, Terumi (Susano'o), Es, Mai, Teddie, Aigis, Elizabeth, Labrys, Margaret, Hyde, Linne, Waldstein, Orie, Nanase, Mika, Ruby, Blake, Jaune, Nora, Pyrrha, Neo, Heart, Saki, Kamui, Petra, Yagyu, Hibari, Ryoubi, Kagura, Sai, Mycale (Perfecti), Kati
Idle Taunt: TBA
Main Traits - Oreichalkos
= Normals =
= Reversal Action (AD (Air OK)) =
= Specials =
= Distortions =
= Astral (222B[C]) =
Wyneb Gwrthucher + Eskaton
= Assist =
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2020.10.01 15:57 kittehgoesmeow What A Day: Wallace And Vomit by Sarah Lazarus & Crooked Media (09/30/20)

"When the shoe fits—when the clown shoe fits." - An undecided voter assessing Joe Biden's debate burns

Hello, Aleve-Land!

To the great astonishment of all spectators, President Trump made Tuesday’s presidential debate the least watchable television experience since, well, the 2016 debates.
In the fleeting windows between interruptions, Joe Biden managed to turn in a good performance.
That debate truly sucked, but nobody had any reason to expect otherwise: Trump acted no differently than he has on any given day of his presidency, and he never will. Take a moment to recall the most persuasive political ad ever made, and let the residual rage and nausea spur you into action. 34 days.

Look No Further Than The Crooked Media

Can the biggest threat to the entire world bring the entire world together? In Missing America's penultimate episode, Ben Rhodes talks to former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd about the roadblocks to confronting climate change he faced from Rupert Murdoch and the fossil fuel industry, and activists from the Pacific Islands to Europe to the US about what needs to be done.
Check out the rest of the series if you haven’t yet, and subscribe to Missing America on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your pods

Under The Radar

The White House has blocked a CDC order to keep cruise ships docked through mid-February, because it might hurt Donald Trump’s chances of winning Florida. CDC Director Robert Redfield recommended extending the current “no-sail” policy which is set to expire today, but the proposal was overruled—the White House will instead let cruise ships sail after October 31, the date the industry had independently agreed to. The tourism industry has substantial political influence in Florida, so it’s not too difficult to puzzle this one out. Anyhow, here’s an enlightening read on how a single cruise ship spread coronavirus around the world, and here’s that Vote Save America link again.

What Else?

Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett declined to pledge to recuse herself from 2020 election cases on her Senate Judiciary Committee questionnaire. Finally, an election-meddling participant with a little honesty.
One other Barrett questionnaire fun fact: She once represented an affiliate of a former Iranian militant group that challenged its designation as a foreign terrorist organization. This did not come up in Barrett’s 2017 confirmation process, oddly enough.
In anticipation of Barrett’s lightning-fast confirmation, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer took control of the Senate floor on Tuesday to force a procedural vote on a bill that would prohibit the Justice Department from supporting a lawsuit aimed at striking down the ACA, in order to put Republican senators on the record in support of the challenge.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin met to negotiate a coronavirus stimulus package today but didn’t reach a deal. House Democrats have delayed a vote on a $2.2 trillion aid bill until at least Thursday.
A judge has ordered Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron to release the grand-jury recordings from Breonna Taylor’s case by noon on Friday, after he sought a delay.
Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-NJ) has been receiving death threats from QAnon followers after the NRCC falsely accused him of “helping sexual predators hide in the shadows.” Who could possibly have seen this coming, except for all of the Republicans who planned for it and have refused to take the ad down? Here’s where to donate to Malinowski’s re-election campaign.
The Trump campaign has been purging its website of any videos featuring Brad Parscale, after he was hospitalized for threatening to harm himself, and the campaign tried to blame it on Democrats.
Staff at a British wildlife park removed five parrots from public view because they kept swearing at visitors, as if that isn’t the whole point of parrots. #LetThemCurse #NoBirdCensorship #FreeBird

Be Smarter

We might be able to get a better hold on coronavirus by looking at the variable k: a measure that looks at whether the virus spreads steadily, or in large bursts. Up until now, we’ve been focused on R0, which defines a pathogen’s average contagiousness, but that average smooths out variability in the way a virus spreads. A growing number of studies suggest that a small percentage of infected people might account for a huge percentage of coronavirus transmission, while many people barely transmit it at all. That imbalance—overdispersion—means that a few early superspreading events (or lack thereof) can lead to dramatically different outcomes in otherwise similar countries, and underscores the need for cheap, rapid tests to find infection clusters quickly. It also underscores the absolute lunacy of President Trump continuing to hold packed superspreader rallies all over the country, including in Wisconsin this weekend, where coronavirus rates are already fully out of control.

What A Sponsor

If there is one thing that health experts agree on, it’s that the perfect diet doesn’t exist.
Even when we eat super well, our daily nutritional needs are constantly changing due to depleted nutrients in the food we eat, stress, environmental toxins and more.
As a result our digestive systems may be compromised and struggle to absorb as efficiently as they should in order to support our immune system, gut health and energy levels.
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When you use Athletic Greens, you know you’re putting the highest quality ingredients in your body that exclude any synthetic ingredients or nasty fillers. And–unlike a lot of green drinks–Athletic Greens actually tastes good (just ask our PSA hosts)!
Building a consistent health routine doesn’t get any easier. Try Athletic Greens now and receive 20 free servings with your first purchase delivered straight to your door.

Is That Hope I Feel?

A federal appeals court has denied a request from Wisconsin’s GOP-controlled legislature to put a hold on its ruling allowing absentee ballots to be counted up to six days after November 3.
The Biden campaign raised $3.8 million in a single hour after Tuesday’s debate, breaking its own single-hour fundraising record, and saw nearly 100,000 people sign up to volunteer.
LeBron James’s effort to increase the number of poll workers in predominantly Black districts has signed up 10,000 volunteers.
(Opening trench coat) You wanna see Katie Porter almost make a big-deal pharmaceutical executive cry?


rebecca jennings on Twitter: "main source of joy is this guy who frantically guesses what color the paint is going to be"
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2020.09.30 07:02 Nixon1960 Torch of the Protectorate Progress Report #2: Long May She Wave

Welcome to the second progress report for Torch of the Protectorate, a mod for Hearts of Iron 4 that explores a world where Cromwell’s British Protectorate survives. I’m Lead Developer Mangolith and within this progress we’ll be exploring the American Experiment and its impacts upon the world. Before delving into the current state of the US, let’s take a moment to examine how we got here.
The influx of Celtic and Royalist refugees to the Southern colonies following the English Civil War resulted in a rapid spiking of tensions within colonial America. Despite the "enlightened" nature of the Commonwealth's government, continued miscommunications and long standing tensions over these groups led to relations rapidly decaying. The direct occupation of the Southern Colonies by British troops only further degraded the situation, and pushed the Northern Public and Intelligentsia increasingly against the British. And then the 1773 Raising of Williamsburg occurred.
The burning of the city of Williamsburg, Virginia by overzealous British troops would only further serve to escalate the crisis within the American colonies. Very quickly the lines are drawn in the sand, as the Northern Colonies begin to increasingly sympathize with and support the South. Terrorist attacks carried out by such groups as the Sons of Liberty push the situation to the breaking point, and when British troops march into Philadelphia, it becomes obvious that peace is no longer an option.
Quickly a call is sent out across the Eastern Seaboard for intellectuals, politicians, and soldiers to rally in the defense of the colonials rights. To lead this rebellion, the Continental Congress forms, with a plethora of New Yorker and New Englander intellectuals at its head. Inspired by the fiery rhetoric of one Alexander Hamilton, the Congress votes to bestow emergency powers to General Benedict Arnold, the commander of the American Revolutionary Army, with only the vague promise to revoke them when peace is restored. Despite the heated opposition of such voices as Thomas Jefferson, the dire military situation combined with the occupation of the South ultimately convinces the colonials of the necessity of such powers.
While the war itself is long and bloody, the ultimate realities of the Commonwealth’s international position eventually lead to the Colonials victory. Perhaps more relevant for today is the foundation of the Democratic-Republicans, America’s first political party, by Thomas Jefferson in secret; and the rising popularity of General George Washington, who quickly became a thorn in the side of Commander Benedict Arnold. While the end of the war did bring some much needed popularity and stability to the de facto junta, economic decay and growing agitation by the Democratic-Republicans ultimately pushed America to the breaking point.
The breaking point would come in the form of the Olive Branch of 1787, a de facto coup led by Jefferson, Hamilton, and General Washington. A new constitution was ratified after it and Washington would ultimately make his mark on history by serving as the first democratically elected President of the United States. This would not be sunshine and roses for everyone however, as the post-Olive Branch political world would largely shun Hamilton, ending his once promising political career. Commander Arnold meanwhile would die in suspicious circumstances only a year later, with many unsure of whether it was a simple suicide to escape his life sentence or something far more sinister. Whatever the case, American democracy was ultimately preserved at the eleventh hour.
As the American nation developed over the years grand, expansionist dreams colloquially known as Manifest Destiny ultimately enticed the nation. There is no better political figure to represent this spirit than President James Polk. Leading the nation to war with Mexico and nearly into one with the British over the Oregon territory, the United States grew in not just in size but international importance under Polk, with many scholars coming to see him as the father of modern American Imperialism. Equally important to this was the first successful filibuster, William Walker, who’s bold conquest of Nicaragua earned him the eternal admiration of the American public.
Though the people of America were proud, the massive territorial gains only served to hide the ever growing divides within the nation, the most famous cause of them easily being the institution of Slavery. The Whig Party, the foil to the Southern Democrats who had long dominated the nation, began to increasingly radicalize despite the desires of its leader, President Henry Clay. In particular, German immigrant Karl Marx and his coterie of exiled German revolutionaries from their home in St. Louis quickly came to captivate a generation of American scholars and industrial workers, with many continuing to swear by his work even today in 1936. Eventually, this polarization became impossible to stop, setting the stage for the disastrous election of 1860.
The election of 1860 would see the abolitionist John McLean elected president, an event which would spark widespread fear throughout the South. The poor health of lame duck President William Marcy only further complicated the situation, and from the period of his election to his inauguration, the federal government was largely paralyzed in the face of multiple states seceding. To make matters worse, McLean’s own health proceeded to rapidly decline, creating a situation where it was unclear if either the President or the President-Elect was going to make it to the inauguration. Vice-President elect Hamlin, rightfully concerned about this, began meeting with the speaker of the house to ensure a smooth succession should the worst come to pass.
On the chilly morning of April 4th, 1861, President McLean began his last speech. It is unknown how the assembled crowd received, as the man famously suffered a fatal stroke before he could finish it. Only six hours later, John McLean was pronounced dead. In his place, the Vice-President elect was solemnly sworn in two days later. He would be confronted with difficult times.
The “two days of chaos”, as they have been infamously branded, would see multiple states either secede or fail in their attempt to. When it was all over, the states of Virginia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Caddo, Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, Walker, and Yucatan had seceded into a new nation. The Confederate States of America had risen, with President William H. Gist at its helm.
The American Civil War, despite its relatively brief span, would be a profoundly changing experience for the United States. It would see Anglo-American relations reach a then all time low, new avenues of cooperation opened with the Sultanate of Delhi, rapid advances in military, industrial, and naval technology and tactics, and massive amounts of death. In the end, the North’s advantages in industry, transportation, and manpower would prove decisive, with the young Confederacy lasting til 1863.
Following the end of the Civil War, at the personal urging of the President, the 15th, 16th, and 17th amendments were added to the constitution. The 15th abolished slavery, the 16th granted citizenship to all born on American soil, and the 17th guaranteed voting rights for African American Males. A long with this, a policy of reconstruction was adopted to rebuild the defeated South.
Growing tensions within the Whig party between true socialist progressives and the more moderate wing ultimately strangle reconstruction in its crib. With little visible success and ever growing divisions, the Whig era was ended with the election of Democrat Samuel Tilden in 1872, who’s first act was ordering the readmittance of all remaining Southern states. While reconstruction would in some forms languish on for several more years, without federal support it was essentially doomed. The legacy of this failure lives on through the still stridently popular Jim Crow Laws that permeate throughout the South.
From Tilden to today, America would begin to ever more build its empire. Colonial holdings were taken in Africa and Asia, and with the formalization of the Managua Pact, an era of Pax Americana was insured across the New World. American politics on the other hand have, recently, been increasingly shaken up. The Progressive Party, the brainchild of dissatisfied Whigs and Democrats, has risen as a serious challenger to the long dominant two party system, and perhaps even more worryingly for the current administration, the American left has finally coalesced into the new Republican-Labor Party, one which promises to finally put into practice the beliefs and ideas of Karl Marx and Daniel De Leon.
With the election of President Archibald Roosevelt in 1932, America’s political theater was polarized once more. With incumbent President Cordell Hull facing blame for the growing instability of America’s overseas territories, the American people heaved a sigh of relief when a Roosevelt, boasting the banner of bipartisanship, came into the scene. Boasting his father’s name, Archibald’s comfort with the Whigs is often questioned with his consistent flip-flopping which leads some to believe that he is a crypto-Democrat. Nonetheless, Archie waltzed up to the White House, soundly beating the Progressives' Hiram Johnson, the Republicans' Emil Seidel and the incumbent Democratic Hull.
America in 1936 finds itself as the hegemon of the New World. The British, largely uprooted outside of their holdings in Patagonia and the Maritimes, do not dare challenge the military might of the pact. While the current President, Archibald Roosevelt, may grow ever more unpopular with every scandal and public appearance, America remains perhaps the greatest of the great powers, and a shining beacon of liberty in a world of autocracy.
Our proud union sits atop of a cloud, eyeing down at the petty European arguments, having realized their hegemony over the continent. If only it were as romantic as that. President Roosevelt rides a wave of hatred on a board manifested by his own ego, the self centered soul of Archie only makes it clear as to why he met the concrete when being denied his own party's nomination, being stood by the more popular former-Governor of Massachusetts, Calvin Coolidge. Nonetheless, Archibald still has a year to go before he's booted out of office which makes way for him to apply his unique (lack thereof) thought process to the scenarios he'll be encountering.
Being the president, Archibald Roosevelt finds himself involved in a large variety of activities. Of course there's the political obligations of a President, though the social side is often forgotten, leaving the ones who do care to tune in to what the President has to say often astounded. Of course there are those who do have a softer side for the Commander In Chief- Mr. Allen Dulles the Democratic Congressman from New York for example.
Being a rising star from within his party, the President takes an interest as to what action he may follow, cozying up to him more than some in his own party. As for Former Governor Coolidge, the President is not thrilled about him seemingly stealing the spotlight, being in the public eye as much as they both are at this hour, trials may emerge. Of course- acting as if there's any skill needed to overcome these tasks insults the word "challenge" itself. Then of course comes the opposition, flailing a torch and pitchfork at Archie's every step. Even to go as far as politicize the Medal of Honor during Archie's own social hour. Despicable.
As President Roosevelt's term comes to its conclusion, there's a large capacity for a last impact, of these is the repeal of the gag rule. Adopted during the tenure of President Samuel Tilden, the gag rule blocked any discussion of civil rights legislation in the congress, halting the radical Whigs and Republicans right in their tracks. However, over its near 60 year existence, the rule has caused nothing but problems. Essential shouting competitions, escorts out of the chambers, and an attempted second caning, the rule is truly a relic of the past, that isn't up for debate. Thankfully, in an act of either benevolence or simply a limited understanding of the situation, President Roosevelt is to allow for the rule's removal. With the rule in place, battles between integrationists and segregationists were rough, with the chains now removed one can only imagine the action to be required to move forward.
Luckily for Archie, he won't have to see the consequences of his actions. Choosing to instead leave his personal views out of the debate meaning the next president will have to eye the fury soon to engulf congress on this crucial topic.
If America's internal situation is complicated, then her colonies are that but amplified tenfold. The United States' Empire stands tall spanning from Asia to Africa. Her holdings in the West of Africa being the most famous. To the north lay the Republic of the Rif and Morocco, robbed the clutches of Spain, assuming their own empire. Heading down to the bank of the west lies American West Africa, the retirement home of the great American industrialists, Harvey Firestone, Henry Ford, and many more. Further to the south of Africa, holds American South West Africa, a state with heavy Southern American immigration, bringing with them, their "odd" gestures to non-whites, specifically referring to the flight of the Ku Klux Klan from the deep southern United States to the South West African Colony. Vetted by the Governor of the colony, Louisiana born, Huey Long. The American presence in Asia is far more complicated than her African foothold, the Philippines Mandate is not a nice place, even the few Americans who chose to settle there meet danger, not even finding refuge when taking part in the government. Governor Theodore Roosevelt Jr. comes under assault from the Americans at home, and far worse, the native resistance groups on the islands. it's clear the Mandate has seen better days. Towards the east, the State of Hawaii, a meeting of 3 governments, the British, the Japanese, and the Americans to govern the strategic islands to varying degrees of success. The current governor of the islands, George Patton, has been selected as the Democratic nomination for Vice President, meaning the office will soon lay vacant, setting up for the inevitable squabble between the governments to ignite once more.
Regarding the colonies, the west African colonies have both come under a wave of distaste from the federal government, not from their seemingly inhumane way of governing, but both have repeatedly been late or have flat just missed their resource shipping deadline outright. President Roosevelt has had enough, scheduling meetings with both Governor Firestone and Governor Long to set the record straight.
Back at home, President Roosevelt has reserved the right to authorize the creation of a new griphold on colonies, suspected dissenters at home, and even those within the United States' own sphere of influence. Supported by Democrats, Whigs, and even a sprinkle of Progressives, The Office of the Coordinator of Information is to be distinctly American. Future tasks of the OCI are yet to be seen, however, with a new exporter of the American way, the race is on to see just what trials can be drafted up for the office to take on.
Come May, workers of the Americas are to be recognized with the May Day rallies. Though from the perspective of the desk of the President, it seems some of those individuals may be getting far too big of a head. May Day, 1936, St. Louis, Missouri. A strike is called leading to a speed bump for the nation's industry. Archie rightfully gathers his senses, understanding that this cannot stand for however long these republicans chose to keep their little game going, delegation must sort this out, no matter who they are. Unfortunately, the problem with such a limited selection of individuals available at a whim, the government's response's results may vary, impacting the election process, for the better, the mediocre, the bad, and the worse.
Returning to the colonies, the status of the Philippines has suffered tremendously in the months since their last check up. With the rapid decline of the colony, and the threat posed to the men in the government, and more importantly the citizen settlers, the nuclear option must be enacted. General Douglas MacArthur, a man of many things, but the man who will at least get the job done to straighten out the colony in their most desperate hour. The American eagle is under threat, Governor General MacArthur will be there to defend it in the time of need.
The politics of Archibald Roosevelt has been nothing but controversial, with the polarization of his own party by finding a larger base with the democrats, he's jeopardized his chances at renomination from the Whigs- dropping out early on in the campaign after being primaried by the former governor of Massachusetts Calvin Coolidge's plays within the party. Archie, now a sitting duck, can only make a few plays of his own at the front of the Oval Office.
Uniting the fractured Whig will take specific plays of course, it won't be easy to court Democrats to vote for a man who's to stand against their imperial ambitions. Navigating through the fog at home will prove to be beneficial come the time to endorse Coolidge, displaying that the man who is never satisfied, can at least spend some time out of the spotlight. However, Archie may find himself in a bit of trouble if he can't adequately guide the party through his own ego, choosing instead to court the democrats for a majority of the campaign season. It of course goes without saying of course, that that doesn't end well.
Rather than deal with petty party politics, Archie may instead find himself a further animosity from the democrats. This may be easier for the President, seeing as he does often take a few pages out of their book, as we'll see going forward. When the time has come to endorse a candidate, Roosevelt may choose to abandon the Whigs in their time of need, instead, supporting the Democratic party's nominee, congressman Allen Dulles. That is, if all goes well. In the wretched game of politics, you can't please everyone, and that's especially true if your head is as big as Archibald's. Choosing instead to appeal to the party, only then to walk out on them at the very end, Archie's former friends in the democrats may not be the friends they once were.
Overall, it's been made clear that politics isn't about making friends, as the President of the United States, Archie does not need to take anything from anybody. When that fateful time comes around, Archie, a bitter, angry man may choose to fund his ego with something else, something more selfish. Refusal to comply with anyone, will cause disarray in the election process, a divided party going up against a party without a spine only leads to both taking the fall making way for the bureaucrat's worst nightmare.
Coming back to the OCI, in the little time it's been around, the number one issue it's been wrangling with is the Mexican government to the south. It is an understatement to say President Plutarco Elías Calles is not a fan of the American government. With constant threats to the rival government in the Rio Grande, Mexico is a tyrant in the American and must be dealt with. A remedy to this issue is obviously desired, with many ideas coming and going, however, the best ideas may come from the oddest circumstances. Well. The idea is a bold one. Carrying it out however will always meet the same fate. Which gives rise to a gross outcome for the party behind the plot.
Archie's efforts of the past year all culminate come November 3rd, the election of 1936 shall see the people's thoughts of the previous administration be expressed through their ballots. As the Democrats, Whigs, Progressives, and to a lesser extent the Republicans all hold their breath as the results come in, throughout the night there's plenty going on however there can only be one winner and that man is...
Allen Dulles! The congressman from New York will be heading to the White House come March 4th, Vice President Elect George Patton of California, retiring just before the election, will fly back to California, stopping by his hometown of San Gabriel meeting with his folks in his last hours as a private citizen.
Calvin Coolidge! The former Governor of Massachusetts and his running mate, Lester Dickson shall head up to the cage fight of Washington politics in March, clearing the clouds for a bright American future.
Franklin Roosevelt! The upstanding Governor of New York alongside his partner in crime, Louis Brandeis, shall meet in the middle, at DC, when March comes along. The Roosevelt ballot is an unpopular one, however it was unequivocally the choice of the American people, deciding to chart a new course for the nation.
Thus that wraps up our quaint visit to the United States of Ameri-
In the final months of Archibald's tenure, the Philippines Mandate has seemingly given out. Luckily for Archie, this won't be his problem for long, meaning he can leave the disaster to the President Elect.
Come inauguration day there is certainly a mixed appeal to the new government, such as President Calvin Coolidge, President Allen Dulles, and certainly President Franklin Roosevelt. Following the inauguration, after the ball, after the pleasantries, when the day draws to an end, the new President lays awake in the oval office; There's work to be done. Starting with the mess in the Philippines.
The Dulles Administration's approach is uniquely- well- French more than anything. Forcing the dissenters to meet their maker with American force, if it works out of course. The Coolidge Administration tones things down however, meeting at a crossroad, to either turn the cheek now, or cleanse the mandate of dissenters so the troubles won't haunt the administration in the future. If Dulles is to be a tiger, then Roosevelt is to be a kitten in this scenario. The Roosevelt Administration recognizes the failures of the previous administration, contrary to Dulles, was of bad governance than of lack of force. The Roosevelt administration seeks to collaborate with the least radical faction in the war to serve as the new America busting out early on the world stage.
This only covers the first trial of these fine mens' administrations, as there's many more challenges to come. The United States stands tall with her empire of clay, moldable, and depending on the circumstances, unstable. With the difference in agendas, the years ahead will diverge further and further to eye their own futures. Through it all however, may God bless America.
Thank you for reading the 2nd Torch of the Protectorate Progress Report. If you wish to learn more about Torch of the Protectorate, please check out our Subreddit at TotPMod or our discord, right here. This progress report could not have been created without the help of: Mangolith, Tiberium, Woodrow Wilson, AC, Timbothy, 48thRonin, Komnothun, Hetmanivna, Lazergaz, Dogs231, Foxide, Grig, LordGoat10, and Mop
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2020.09.28 14:00 r2lim Sponsors Contribution to MotoGP - Case of Idemitsu

Sponsors Contribution to MotoGP - Case of Idemitsu

President Kito x Nakagami Special conversation

What they have things in common who fighting on the world stage?

The unknown anguish of MotoGP riders
Kito: It's been 6 years, since our company started supporting Japanese and Asian riders who are challenging the world. Finally, from this year, Nakagami-san has been promoted to the MotoGP class, which is the highest peak of Grand Prix motorcycle racing. Is the class that competing for the best in the world different from other class?
Nakagami: The engine displacement has increased from 600cc to 1000cc, so the power is completely different. The maximum speed reaches 350km/h, so a heavy load on the body to control bike while enduring this. The typical one is "Arm pump".
Kito: "What is Arm pump?"
Nakagami: In the race, the speed decelerates from 300km/h to 60km/h in just 100m, and then accelerates rapidly again. When riding a bike, the accelerator and brakes are performed with the right hand, so the hands are constantly working. Due to the incessantly pressure, the sensation of the arm becomes numb. This is "Arm pump". I’ve been on the fence, but in January of last year, I had an operation to cut the fascia of my right arm and relieve the load while riding. Half of MotoGP riders have this surgery.
Kito:You would take it that far?! I couldn't imagine what a tough sports.

Carrying Idemitsu's Apollo Mark and Japan on your back
Kito: A tough world where the world's top riders compete. I was so moved that my eyes were tearing up to see Idemitsu's Apollo mark on the back of Nakagami-san riding on the circuit. Idemitsu currently has more than 60 business bases around the world. I am very happy that you are riding an active part overseas with a big Apollo mark on your back, and I think it is match with our corporate philosophy.
Nakagami: Speaking of Idemitsu's impression, the first is the gas station. However, when I listened to the stories of other businesses in detail, I got a very different impression.
Kito: Our company has developed mainly in domestic oil refining and sales, but the content of the business it does is changing according to the environment. In addition to petroleum, our business is expanding significantly in the field of so-called high-performance materials such as materials for organic EL panels, special plastics, and lubricating oils that require high technology. Another major feature is our commitment to energy supply in Southeast Asia, which is growing rapidly. This year, we were able to build a new refinery in Vietnam, by Idemitsu's technological capabilities. Business areas and regions are expanding. Nakagami-san, Don't you changed your feelings as the environment changed as your stepped up.
Nakagami: My parents were fans of motorsports, so I started with pocket bike when I was four. Actually, I don't have much memory of that time (laughs). At first, I didn't have any talent at all, and the first race was the last person. However, after that, I won the 1st place in the pocket bike race. When I was a kid, I felt that it was more fun to riding a bike than to "ride fast". Right now, I'm in a world where we always competing for 1/1000 second during the 45-minute race. It's like clinging to Bullet train all the time.

President Kito x Nakagami

Their energy of motivation
Kito: Nakagami-san, what your conviction to fighting on a tough world?
Nakagami: My conviction is the strong feeling that I don't want to lose to anyone. All around us are very talented riders, and I'm fighting on the best stage where only 24 riders can participate in the world. My motivation is feeling that is whatever it takes, I wanna be the top of the world.
Kito: Very competitive spirit may necessary like you. I think that the fact that Japanese athletes like Nakagami-san play an active role on the world level is exactly in line with our corporate concept. Our company strongly want to contribute to the various society and world by expressing our goodness and Japanese spirit.
Nakagami: Kito-san, So what is most important thing to you?
Kito: It's a "people". We believe that no matter how much the environment surrounding energy is changed, if the "people" are reliable, we will definitely be able to respond. We also think that the most important thing is to development of human resources who can respond to any environment. Even in the construction of the refinery in Vietnam, which I mentioned earlier, more than 200 employees stuck around the site in Vietnam and worked very hard. It's the same as Nakagami-san, who desperately clings to the bike. Our company join hands with partners from various countries, and by taking on the challenge of new businesses, especially young employees grew significantly.
I think this is actually a big asset. It can be said that the "making of the next Idemitsu" that I am working on as president is exactly the "making of people" that will lead the next generation. It seems that you has become accustomed to new bike, and I’m looking forward to your successful in the Japanese Grand Prix in October.
I have high expectations for you. Of course, I will also go to the circuit for support you.
Nakagami: Thank you. We will continue to challenge the world with the feeling of "I don't want to lose to anyone".

We will continue to support Nakagami in the world's best motorcycle road race "MotoGP" by co-sponsoring "LCR Honda IDEMITSU" in the 2020 season!

From left: Lucio Cecchinello LCR Honda Team Director, President Kito, MotoGP Rider Takaaki Nakagami, Senior Executive Officer Yokomura (Lubricating Oil Manager)
March 5, 2020
Idemitsu Kosan Co., Ltd. support Nakagami who will participate in the race by sponsoring "LCR Honda IDEMITSU".

We agree to Honda Motor Co., Ltd.'s motor sports objective, "From Asia to the World", and we support young riders who challenge the world by sponsoring "FIM Road Racing World Championship (MotoGP / Moto2 / Moto3)" and "Idemitsu Asia Talent Cup."
Nakagami is in his third year of participating in the highest MotoGP class. At last year's Italian GP (Round 6), he showed a good performance, such as updating his personal best and winning 5th place. After the Japanese Grand Prix (Round 16), he had a frustrating by missed races due to a shoulder injury, but Nakagami said, "This season, I will make a leap forward based on my experience so far." He talked about his enthusiasm at our company.
We look forward to the further success of Nakagami, and will contribute to the success of Asian GP riders following Nakagami and the development of motor sports culture.
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2020.09.26 20:57 FeniaBukharina Krasnacht Transmission #5: Auferstanden aus Ruinen

Auferstanden aus Ruinen

Welcome to our fifth transmission for the mod! This transmission will, like the #3 and #4, be 'lite'. This is our third and final transmission in our series providing an overview on and background lore of the socialist nations of north and western Europe. We started with France and Britain, then we continued with Italy and the Iberia, today with finish off with Germany, and the International Mandates of Belgium and the Netherlands. Enjoy!


Hello! It’s Doorhanger93, here to tell you all about Europe's favorite multilingual battleground. More specifically, I’ll reveal about how it fared in both wars, where it stands in 1950, and give you some hints as to where it's headed.
The Kingdom of Belgium entered the first world war unified and confident, but left it shattered and divided. Despite the valiant efforts of the ‘Soldier-King’ Albert I and his army to delay the Germans, by 1918 Belgium was no more. Her colonies were stripped, her industry lay in ruin, and her exhausted people were forced under the jackboot of the German pawn kingdom known as “Flanders-Wallonia”. Belgium’s diminutive neighbor, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, fared even worse, being completely subjugated to the Kaiser as a vassal of the Reich. However, both countries’ fates were tied together after the Germans granted the predominantly Walloon region of Belgian Luxembourg back to the Grand Duchy, reversing a treaty that had held for eight decades.
In the immediate aftermath of the Weltkrieg, much of the population found themselves unemployed, as Belgian industry was still war-torn. A series of “Flamenpolitik” laws were implemented, continuing from Germany’s wartime policy to divide Belgium under the pretense of Flemish liberation from the extensively French-chauvinist former Belgian kingdom. These laws heavily favored the Dutch-speaking Flemish over the French-speaking Waloons, and so in order to keep up their pretense of liberation, Germany devised the federal system of the Kingdom of Flanders-Wallonia, giving extensive legal and linguistic autonomy to both sides, with French-speakers in Flanders, including the capital, Brussels, forced into bilingualism.
For a while, it seemed as though these laws would have the opposite intended effect, strengthening Belgian unity to spite the German occupier, however as the German belt loosened and the wounds of the war healed, there was a small Flemish renaissance. For the first time, rural Flemings could migrate to the cities without learning French, find work in the newly bustling Flemish port cities; taking in goods from all over the world and sending them all over Mitteleuropa, and they could receive full educations in their own language - Flanders had, at least, established itself as an identity rather than a rural backwater.
Meanwhile, the economic situation in Wallonia had still failed to recover. Not only did they now face competition from Germany, but industry had also been brought up by Germans, eager German migrants had come to work the new industrial frontier, and some factories had outright been shipped away to the Reich - as the Flemish ports benefited from the low trade barriers of Mitteleuropa, Walloon industry was paying the price. This situation was fertile ground for the growth of socialism, emboldened, radicalized, and backed by the French revolutionaries across the border. Also, while Belgian nationality still held strong, a Walloon identity was slowly developing in reaction to the rise of the Flanders, which now dominated the supposedly “equal” federation.
In Luxembourg, the situation was even worse, with extensive Germanisation campaigns excluding Luxembourgish as a mere dialect, encouraging widespread German immigration and the encroachment of German capital, threatening the livelihood of Luxembourgers and even the Walloons of Belgian Luxembourg.
By 1938, due to efforts jump-started by the economic shattering of Black Monday, some signs of a genuine recovery were beginning to show themselves, albeit slowly, due to the continued German dominance of industry. Unemployment figures were finally starting to improve, and public unrest towards the federal kingdom started to wind down. However, the population was still far from content, with distrust over the language barrier still fomenting, and “Belgianists” were still present all over the political spectrum; Old-Monarchists, Socialists, Republicans, and more. Although they couldn’t agree how a new Belgium would be organized, all Belgianists still opposed the status quo and the German domination of public affairs.
Then came an infamous day, on the 10th of September, 1939. After a decade of extreme tension, the recently politically upheaved French Communal Republic issued an ultimatum to the German Empire, demanding an end to the repression of German trade unions and the recognition of the new communard government. When the Germans inevitably refused, Belgian blood ran cold. The people of the “battleground of Europe” sunk into despair. As riots and strikes broke out, King Adalbert reluctantly mustered the army. Another European war had come to their strategically located homeland, and the Belgian people wanted no part in it; except for some radical Germanophiles and socialists, the country was once again united in its opposition.
The war rolled over the small kingdom, spreading annihilation wherever it went. Old wounds were opened, oozing gashes where Belgian pride ran like blood. Many family homes were simply turned to ash and dust, and newly-repaired factories were transformed into jagged, flaming ruins, destroyed by British bombers, French tanks, and German artillery.
The Belgian army under Aldebert was no match for France and Britain, and mostly served to assist the German army. Eventually, in 1943, after the Russian invasion of the Reichspakt, the socialists would force their way across the low country as Dutch recruits joined the brutal fight, to no avail.
After the front lines finally pushed east into Germany, the populace was almost granted their wish: the Kingdom of Flanders Wallonia and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg were no more, but in their place were the mere shattered remains of nations, administered by their new socialist occupiers through the “International Reconstruction Mandate for Belgium”, overseen by the “Council for the Reconstruction of Belgium”, an organization of Flemish, Walloon, and Luxembourgish left-wing leaders along with Franco-British military men, created to rebuild the destroyed countries and prepare for their eventual return to civilian rule.
Even after the fighting had moved east, further strife would come to Belgium as the frontlines seesawed back and forth and Germany grew ever more desperate to stem the flow of supplies arriving in Antwerp. When the Luftstreitkrafte's bomber command could no longer muster the planes to reliably raid the ports and the Kaiserliche Marine found itself penned in by the threat of air power and lack of fuel; Germany turned to rocketry. The products of Werner von Braun's programs would rain down repeatedly on Antwerp in a final, vain effort to turn the tide of war. But soon this threat too would cease as the socialists pushed deep into the heart of the Reich itself. Many Belgian volunteers are indeed proud to say that the Vandervelde Division took part in the final offensive at Berlin, and were there for the final curtain-fall on the German Empire. Though no city in the world had suffered more from the rocket scourge than Antwerp, the city survived and would continue the process of healing.
In 1950, Belgium sits in political limbo, while the reconstruction efforts are all but finished, the fundamental and difficult questions of state have been bogged down in the Mandate’s bureaucracy. However, new elections are soon to be held, and many suspect this will be the election that will draw up the new constitution. The Belgian Communist Party, of the now famous hero Julien Lahaut, is set to win thanks to its popularity in lieu of any reactionary options. However, politics is a fickle thing, and lady fate may have other plans...


Now it’s time to talk about the land of dikes and windmills, of canals and clogs, and the land of Rembrandt, van Leeuwenhoek and van Gogh, the Netherlands.
The Dutch were unaffected by the devastation and horrors of the First World War thanks to their strictly neutral foreign policy, and the nation remained mostly in peace. Though affected by the Entente's blockade of the North Sea, the Dutch persevered, and life mostly returned to normal following the Peace with Honour. The return of shipments from overseas following the breaking of the Entente's blockade had even engendered a minor upswing in pro-German sentiment, due to German success bringing prosperity to the low country.
In 1925, the conservative “Anti-Revolutionaire Partij” or ARP, would be re-elected in coalition with multiple Christian parties, with the ARP’s Hendrikus Colijn replacing Ruijs de Beerenbrouck, from the allied Roomsch-Katholieke Staatspartij (RKSP), as Premier. The British revolution would, of course, deeply affect the Netherlands; as the global economy collapsed, the Dutch were forced to cling ever more tightly to the Germans to shield them from the collapse and subsequent revolutionary agitation. With heavily protected Mitteleuropan trade, the Dutch managed to just about push through the economic collapse, further deepening ties with the Reich.
Colijn would eventually be re-appointed as Premier in 1933, and again in 1935. As the Glorious Nivose reached its peak in France in 1936, the Dutch left would fall into conflict, with many in the Revolutionair-Socialistische Arbeiderspartij (RSAP) leaving, in opposition to the party’s pro-Nivose stance, to join the Sociaal-Democratische Arbeiderspartij (SDAP) or other parties. This allowed frustrated pro-Nivose members of the party derided as “Patriotten” to join the RSAP, including David Wijnkoop and Paul de Groot. When Black Monday hit the Netherlands in 1936, Premier Colijn responded with a policy of strict austerity and privatization, aiming to reduce unemployment following the advice of liberal economists. However, these disastrous measures only served to lengthen the economic crisis, and the German behemoth which had saved the Dutch last time was now the epicentre of the collapse. In the same year, following the resignation of the Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies, Cornelis de Jonge, the Insulindians revolted, led by "the Scorpion" Soenario Sastrowardoyo. This crisis in the Indies forced Colijn to appoint the VNH member, Admiral Johan Furstner, to become the next Governor-General. Despite being hit by two crises simultaneously, Colijn and the ARP coalition would triumph once more in the 1937 elections, although only by narrow margins, a worrying trend caused by rising popularity of both the far-right and of socialist organizations.
Realizing his tenuous position and the growth of political unrest, especially from the left, Colijn amended the Civil Servant Prohibition, a law that prohibited civil servants from joining any "radical" parties. He also supported the conservative Christian trade unions, in an attempt to pull workers from socialist unions into organizations that would collaborate with the government and with business, rather than agitating against both. Lastly, he quietly, slowly, and surely cracked down on the left-moving SDAP, hoping to consolidate more power around the ARP.
In 1939, the situation improved for Colijn. Furstner, with the help of generals Berenschot and ter Poorten, had defeated the Insulindians, the economy showed signs of recovery, and the ARP coalition won yet again in the 1939 elections, having now been in power for more than two decades. But as September came, war erupted between France and the German Empire.
Colijn and his government, growing ever-frightened of the socialists, started taking drastic measures to contain the situation. Perhaps most visible were their efforts to arrest major leftist leaders, such as David Wijnkoop, Lou de Visser and Henk Sneevliet of the RSAP. Eventually, they banned the RSAP and other leftist organizations altogether in 1940, forcing them underground, while the country prepared for war measures.
The neutral Netherlands had become a safe haven for the right-wing, but the Kingdom still suffered from the British trade war in the North Sea, and became even more dependent on the Germans for basic imports. This situation would lead to the Dutch effectively becoming participants in the war, supplying men and materiel for the German war effort, while still maintaining official neutrality - that is, until the Russian invasion of the east in 1943. As troops were desperately shuffled from the western front, the Reich finally, and very firmly, demanded that the Dutch join the war proper, in order to take up the slack. Left with no other choice, the Kingdom joined the great Crusade against Socialism.
However, this would prove a dangerous decision; as the Heer was stretched over two fronts, the Franco-British army exploited the disorganization to launch a large offensive, successfully recovering French territory and eventually pushing into Germany and Flanders-Wallonia. By 1944, the Netherlands were laid bare, with socialist forces pushing into the border and German help becoming ever more limited. By 1945, Amsterdam would fall. With some of their members captured and imprisoned, and Coljin himself dead of a heart attack in 1944, the ARP, the RKSP, the VDB, and many other parties were forced underground, alongside remnants of the Dutch army, forming resistance groups all around the country who prayed for the Germans to seize the country back in a counter-attack. Promising to one day return, the members of the VNH escaped to the East Indies to seek refuge within Admiral Furstner's new domain.
The counter-attack that the Dutch right had hoped for would not come. Though at times the Germans managed to seize back portions of the country in the fighting around the North European plains, the fuel situation now decisively favored the INFOR with the flow of oil from the newly established Commonwealth of America to the revolutionaries. Now it was the Germans' turn to find their forces frustrated by ever-diminishing fuel reserves, as all access points for fresh oil were gradually cut off one after the other. The Ardennes offensive of late 1944 and early 1945 would be repulsed before the Germans could reach Amsterdam, ground down just outside of shelling range. The following summer offensive of operation Hexenhammer in the autumn of that year would be the last roll of the dice in the North European plains for Germany and would see Germany's North Sea coast liberated in the aftermath. This defeat brought the end of Germany's foothold in Frisia alongside all hope for the restoration of the Dutch government.
As the front lines were pushed out of the Netherlands proper, INFOR would create the Raad voor de Wederopbouw van Nederland (RWN) or the “Council for the Reconstruction of the Netherlands” - colloquially known as “de Raad” or “the Council” by the populace - from prominent Dutch left-wing politicians and INFOR military officials. The Council would form the governing body of the International Mandate for the Reconstruction of the Netherlands; like the Belgian Mandate to the south, this organisation was aimed to rebuild a new, socialist Netherlands, although Dutch politics proved tricky to navigate for the socialists.
Being the last vestiges of the pre-war Netherlands before the Franco-British invasion, the SDAP's popularity soared, however, internal disagreement over the occupation forced the party to split in two. While the remaining SDAP is led by the legendary Willem Drees and pragmatically supports and participates in the Council, the Democratische Arbeiderspartij (DAP), led by former underground leader Jaap Burger, abstains from the Council, claiming the Mandate to be an undemocratic occupation.
However, the more far-left RSAP (Revolutionair-Sosialistische Arbeidspartij) has many internal struggles, becoming a broad front for pro-France socialists after the Glorious Nivose has left it with little internal cohesion, and the fast rise to prominence after the party’s inclusion in the RWN has left it with a tentative support base. After the death of David Wijnkoop in 1947 and Henk Sneevliet in 1949, the leadership of the party has changed, with the “Volksgroep” faction now led by the famous underground leader, Paul de Groot, and the “Arbeidsgroep” faction now led by Henk Sneevliet's disciple Abraham Menist, and the “broad-front” is almost certainly headed for a split.
The parties in the RWN are seen by much of the public as puppets of INFOR, and this section of the public has come to either support the DAP or even join the underground anti-socialist resistance, in the hopes that perhaps the Russians or someone else may drive out the reds. This large-scale public apathy and rebellion has bogged down any attempt to return the Netherlands to sovereignty, and four years after the end of the war in Europe, the Mandate remains.
The Council now has two main problems that it has to deal with. First, it has to fight the aforementioned reactionary partisans, who have disrupted the general peace in the country and present a means for the SARPAC to prod into western Europe. Secondly, the Council must complete their "Doorbraak", or Breakthrough, project, aimed at destroying the “Zuilen” or "Pillars", established by the ARP's founder Abraham Kuyper, that divide Dutch society and reinforce reactionary organization.
If the Council is successful in dealing with their preliminary problems, then finally the seemingly perpetual Mandate may give way to a new and stronger Netherlands, reborn from the ashes of war. However, if these issues are not dealt with delicately, even greater issues may arise…


Guten Tag und Willkommen! This is Marsworms, here to explain and explore the lore and history of the heart of imperialist Europe, and the newly established socialist state that has arisen from the ruins of total war. Germany, the birthplace of both Karl Marx and Bismarck, sits at the heart of Europe, and at the heart of the Great Revolutionary War that ushered in the new era.
At the open of 1939, Germany sat at the head of a burgeoning empire spanning Europe, Africa and Asia, with influence from Dunkirk to Tahiti, the ageing Wilhelm II as its Emperor and the well-liked leader of the Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands, Otto Wels, as its Reichskanzler. The SPD was elected with their promises of social reform and welfare programs, of support for labor in the face of the economic struggles in the aftermath of Black Monday. SPD-affiliated labor unions, the so-called “Free Unions”, were encouraged to negotiate with employers and even enjoyed some state sanction for their small scale strikes. At the same time, regional governments passed law after law restricting labor, leading to these movements looking ever more to the SPD. Otto Wels had learned from what he saw in the economic downturn of America, and seeing the United States tear itself apart limb from limb prompted him to lean harder on his party’s claimed support of the workers.
By 1939, however, something was becoming increasingly apparent. In essence, the increase in labor strikes was being taken advantage of by enemies of the state, seditious communists and left-leaning SPD members willing to work with them. In August of 1939, this rose to the forefront when a strike by a collection of Free Unions in the industrial Ruhr was taken over by Heinrich Brandler, a trade unionist with known affiliations with the Deutsche Organisation der International. Striking for better work hours and working conditions, what was originally a small-scale event ballooned into DOI-affiliated unions shutting down workplaces and working together with the Free Unions in rapid, radical action which forced the Chancellor’s hand. Otto Wels ordered the strike shut down, and militarized police were sent in, arresting all of the trade unionist leaders, both SPD allies and DOI operatives, including the so-called “prisoner of the Ruhr”, Heinrich Brandler himself, while killing dozens of striking workers in the chaos.
With the Ruhr under effective occupation by the police, the violent repression of the strike sent shockwaves through the German Empire, prompting protests across the country. One of the most notable was centered on Nanzig, captured from the French in the aftermath of the great war, where a mixture of French socialists, trade unionists, and nationalists marched in the streets against both the repression that they saw in the occupied Ruhr, and their continued German occupation. The demonstrations began on the 19th of August, and just as quickly as they began, they were violently put down, with the highly autonomous police chief of Nanzig, Ernst Damzog, arresting hundreds of demonstrators and ordering the extrajudicial murders of several of the most prominent, and most leftist, among them. Parisian newspapers reported on the four-day long incident, with the front pages of newspapers emblazoned with the faces of the “Martyrs of Nancy”, especially that of Eugène Dieudonné, an infamous French anarchist revolutionary, who was visiting his hometown in Nanzig when the demonstrations began. One week after the incident, Chairman Pierre Besnard issued what would later be known as the “Brandler-Dieudonné Ultimatum” in France and the "September Demands" in Germany. The very next day, the foreign ministry of Kaiser Wilhelm II rejected the ultimatum, prompting France to declare war on September 15th, 1939.
Reichskanzler Otto Wels and Kaiser Wilhelm II, along with the skillful propagandistic media of the Kaiserreich, rallied the German people around war with France, using the Communal Republic’s declaration of war to their advantage. Even some left-leaning social democrats and union leaders were in support of the war effort, and the front-lines seeming to inch in Germany's favor reassured the people in distant Berlin or Konigsberg that all would be well. Then, only two weeks into the war, Reichskanzler Otto Wels died, succumbing to stress-induced illness brought on by his years as Chancellor. With their leadership gone and the war looming large in the minds of the politicians, the SPD’s dominant plurality became unimportant, allowing Kaiser Wilhelm II to establish a nonpartisan war government under newly appointed Reichskanzler Franz von Papen.
The years of the Papen Government would be dominated by military affairs, with martial law declared across the whole region of Elsaß-Lothringen and surprisingly successful Franco-British offensives into Flanders-Wallonia fended off by sheer German force of arms, manned by reserves called up from the Reichspakt. The outskirts of Nanzig were the site of battle after battle as the French forces attempted to capture the city in their struggle for the Northern European plains, but little progress was made. In the capital, the average Berliner thought little of the war, glad to see every victory against the French menace reported in their newspapers.
The first crack in the German armor would come with the success of the British on the water. Hopelessly out-resourced by Germany, the fuel-starved Republican Navy made no attempt to “win” the naval war, and instead dedicated itself to the task of making things as difficult for the Kaiserliche Marine as possible, without wasting ships and fuel in direct combat and making use of the increasing potency of air power which Britain believed, quite rightfully, had evolved to the point of being able to be a powerful instrument of sea warfare, especially against a foe that still believed that airpower was secondary to the might of big gun battleships.
Then, after two years of German successes in Belgium and standoffs in Nanzig, Kaiser Wilhelm II died. On the 4th of June, 1941, the head of the German Empire was no more, succeeded by his far less popular and infamously tactless son Wilhelm III. The Kaiser’s death brought with it not just national mourning, but also protests and organizing on the part of opposition groups around the Empire when combined with the onset of rationing following the naval setbacks in the North Atlantic. Bavarian nationalists, fearful of a potential breakup of the Zentrum-dominated nonpartisan coalition, protested in Munich. Free unions in Prussia went on strike against the undoing of the SPD-era labor laws. Uncertainty dominated politics following the Kaiser’s death, and Wilhelm III was approached by just the man who could allay these uncertainties: Kurt von Schleicher, a famous marshal and staunch ally of the monarchy.
Yet another government, the third in the span of just as many years, was inaugurated in late June 1941. The new appointment saw the Reichstag sidelined, as a cabinet of zealous military men was convened. Martial law was declared across vast swathes of the Empire, with mass arrests and rushed kangaroo court convictions of political opponents hidden by the new national media apparatus of Alfred Hugenburg. The butcher of Nanzig, Ernst Damzog, was pardoned and released from jail by Kaiser Wilhelm III on the advice of Reichskanzler von Schleicher, to be sent to fight on the front with France. The entire state apparatus of the German Empire turned to war, and while the instability and demoralization prompted by the death of the beloved Kaiser Wilhelm II and allowed for some Socialist victories, the mass mobilization of the whole of the Reichspakt under Schleicher managed to beat back the French.
For the next two years, the front line continued shifting, never turning into the entrenchment that so defined the last war, primarily due to British and French bombing campaigns past the front and the new mobility afforded by motorization, however no side ever seemed to make any great gains. Some blamed this stagnation in part on the surprising strength of the Franco-British Air Forces, which combined were almost a match for the venerable Luftstreitkräfte, however others decided that a simply more aggressive strategy was needed.
A revitalized German push under the leadership of Generalfeldmarschall Fedor von Bock and Hermann Hoth broke the French defense along near Nanzig, and managed to push all the way to Verdun, however this advance was stalled and repelled in a heroic defense of the city by French forces. After this failure, more bad news began to trickle from other fronts in this global war against socialism: the remainder of the loyalist forces in the former United States and Canada were all but eliminated, and a red America now posed the huge threat of replenishing dwindling International supplies, especially oil, the German favored Zhili clique was beginning to be worn down by the leftist Kuomintang, and Subhas Chandra Bose's Bharatiyan forces were increasingly clearly the inevitable victors of the wars in India. Perhaps even worse, all the Entente's efforts to open up a second front had proven to be failures; leading to German High Command to lament that they were forced to partner with a pack of "Nostalgist Failures and Daydreaming Good-For-Nothings".
And in an unsung but crucial factor, Germany's cult of the Fighter Ace, instilled by the legendary Manfred von Richthofen, was proving to be an Achilles’ heel for its air force. Ace pilots were rarely rotated out to pass their skills onto their comrades and each one that fell took nearly all their skills with them to the grave. Graves that they all too often helped themselves into through a dangerous obsession with inflating their scores as much as possible. All so that they could bask in fame and glory as Germany's propaganda machine made its aces into virtual gods before the eyes of the German public. Meanwhile, the most successful of INFOR pilots would be pulled back to teach what they learned to the next generation. As the skill of Germany's pilots slowly but surely whittled, the INFOR's pilots only became better and better. Though Germany kept pace in terms of numbers of airplanes and the quality of its aircraft, the men behind the machines were falling ever further behind their enemies and the German air force found itself losing control of the skies.
1943 is widely considered the turning point in the war, where Germany truly began to lose. Between 1939 and 1943, for four years, the front was relatively stagnant, seesawing continually without much in the way of permanent gain and Germany had reason to be confident in its superior manpower and greater available industry even if cracks were showing.
With the Russian entry into the war, the entire German war machine had to be restructured, as it was plagued by the increasing dissatisfaction of both the German people and more importantly; the allies of the Empire. After four years of war, people were growing tired of the bloody struggle, and disobedience was steadily mounting within Germany's allies who loathed to send their sons to die for the Reich. Strikes, acts of disobedience, and even sabotage were increasingly commonplace and had grown to virtually epidemic proportions in the client states of the east, where partisan warfare was being waged more and more openly every day.
The initial Russian invasion sparked an even further intensification of these acts of resistance as for the first time, it seemed like Germany was weak. Leftist dissidents were now being joined by right wing Pan-Slavists and Nationalists who hoped that National Republican Russia would liberate them from the German yoke that demanded more and more for a distant war. The Russian Great White Army had prepared itself quite well, and timed the cutting of valuable exports to Germany's coffers at just the right moment before launching Operation Varangian.
To the south, Egypt and its Cairo Pact allies had spent years making preparations in secret with the International and the Russian State to modernize, industrialize, and exploit the available resources of the region, which were offered without restriction, in return for the assistance of the anti-German blocs. The Ottoman Turks, Germany’s chief client state in the region - and an absolutely vital source of oil for the Reich - were seen as the great oppressor of the Arab people, and the Germans their great enablers. Thus the Cairo Pact was only too glad to strike at both, assailing the hopelessly outnumbered Suez Garrison and striking into the Ottoman Empire in tandem with Russia’s Caucasian offensive.
The Great White Army crashed into the eastern territories of the Reichspakt, and threatened to cause catastrophe as overwhelmed divisions tried their best to pull back to prepared defensive lines. The loss of the Suez Canal was also catastrophic, all but cutting off Germany from its colonial resources; almost overnight, Germany found its lifeline to Ottoman, Persian, and Azeri oil under threat. Germany would now have to learn to rely almost entirely on its strategic reserve, and what could be synthesized, and thus was now running on a timer.
By the Summer of 1945, the Netherlands, Belgium, Alsace-Lorraine, and a portion of the Rhineland had been captured by International forces that were now flush with American and Arabian oil, and awash with American trucks and artillery, while Germany’s allies in the east were felled one by one by Savinkov and his allies. Despite the massive militarization of the state under Reichskanzler von Schleicher and the tens of thousands being executed by Ferdinand’s discipline squads every month to enforce Prussian courage, Germany was already in a downward spiral. The strategic reserve of oil had run out and production could never hope to meet demand, the Siegfried line was breaking in the face of Operation Enchante, as fortifications were obliterated by precision bombing and ample self-propelled artillery. Socialist and Rightist partisans began to rise up in areas where military control was weak enough to be thrown off. Poland fell to Savinkov and his Polish Nationalist allies in early 1946, following the defeat of the Warsaw Commune, while French forces, bolstered by German partisans joining their ranks, pushed ever eastwards. Hungary's attacks on the former Habsburg Empire, and the efforts of Serbia and Romania served to make the formation of any coherent defensive line in the east fruitless, and Manstein advised High Command of the impossibility of victory. The Ottoman Empire was already dead and all the efforts of Germany to save it had come to nothing. Already, the colonies were crumbling as the Indochinese cast off their masters, all remnants of the Pro-German order in China were destroyed, and Goring’s attempts to hold the African Jewel together by brute force that would claim millions of lives instead shredded the pride and joy of the German empire to pieces, with only the longest established and most heavily Germanized colonies destined to remain loyal in the collapse that was to come.
Fearful of the rapidly impending collapse of the German military and empire, with mutinies and surrenders increasingly commonplace, Kaiser Wilhelm III and his Chancellor began preparations to flee the country. Königsberg fell to the Russian onslaught shortly after the liberation of Poland, while Magdeburg was captured by French, British, and socialist German forces in early 1946. June of 1946 would essentially mark the end of German resistance as the Kaiser fled for Sweden under cover of night, putting on a disguise in order to board a neutral Swedish vessel and make good his escape to Sudwestafrika, where colonial general and administrator Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck had established a loyalist regime of soldiers and colonists in the aftermath of the implosion of Mittelafrika. Breslau and Prussia itself would fall to the rapidly advancing Slavic armies, while INFOR’s siege of Berlin would begin only a few weeks after. By August 15th, 1946, the German Empire was no more, with the fall of Berlin, and the capitulation of the scattered and disorganized German military to International and Russian forces, being the final end of the old regime. A weary and dispirited Manstein emerging from his bunker in Berlin would sign the final order of surrender in the sight of the victorious powers and give the address asking those who still fought for the Emperor to stand down. The war was over, and even to many Germans this was a tremendous relief after years of incalculable suffering inflicted in part by their own rulers.
As the International Workers’ Armed Forces made their offensives through Germany, they were supported by myriad German socialist partisans that established workers’ councils and made multiple distinct declarations of local socialist governments, which were quickly co-opted into INFOR’s Council for the Reconstruction of Germany. It was, however, ultimately the flight of the Kaiser to Sudwestafrika that allowed the International Reconstruction Mandate for Germany to be established, and the Council had to be formed into an approximate government. The freedom-fighting partisans and resisting parties were an excellent source of administrative officials, but the real base of socialist rule in Germany ultimately came down to the collaboration of the two largest political parties in the former German Empire: the Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands and the newly established Spartakische Arbeiterspartei Deutschlands.
However, this situation was to be short-lived, as the Russians had formed their own German state on the border, and INFOR desperately needed a sovereign counterbalance. Guided by the diplomatic efforts of the French, the United Front of the SAPD and SPD formed the establishment of the new government of the new German Socialist Republic with its new President Otto Grotewohl as a compromise candidate, himself a member of the leftist faction of the SPD.
With its government barely four years old, the German Socialist Republic enters 1950 headed a young and unestablished coalition of former enemies. The SPD, when it held the position of Chancellor of the German Empire, suppressed the actions of now SAPD members and violently attacked DOI-affiliated strikers, only to be suppressed itself under the brutal military regime in the Kaiserreich, but now, to better the position of the socialist revolution in Germany, the SAPD must cooperate with them. Will the alliance stand firm, or will it falter? What will Germany's place be within INFOR, as its mighty industries and teeming population recover and begin to eclipse France's once more? What shape will the rearming German military take as the German Red Army coalesces into an organized sword and shield for socialism? And surely, the fate of the ships of the Kaiser’s navy that did not flee to what remained of the colonies must be discussed? And what of the reeking remnants of the old reactionary order in the country… not to mention the gaunt ghoul that stares back at the GSR’s forces stationed across from Dresden and the Oder - the German People’s State.
Photos from the transmission:
If you would like to see more teasers and transmissions, we would really appreciate applications submitted from members of the community. We would like to get more content out monthly, but our current developers have a lot on their plate as it stands, especially people who can code or do GFX, if you'd like to join the team, please fill in the application form and join our Discord server.
submitted by FeniaBukharina to krasnacht [link] [comments]

2020.09.20 03:42 RGQTKrampus Is it easy to obtain a Medical Cannabis card in Michigan?

I just set up an appointment at Healthy Partners in Grand Rapids, and before I go in, I just wanted to ask if it's an easy process getting the card. I made a "Level 2" appointment where I will not be providing my own medical records, and I stated my qualifying condition in my reason for visiting. Am I in for a long session of filling out forms and medical paper work that take days to be processed? I don't want to sound impatient, I just don't know if it's a long process or not. Any help is appreciated, thanks!
submitted by RGQTKrampus to Michigents [link] [comments]

2020.09.18 23:01 WrittenDisease Chronicles of Noctra: Chapters One and Two

Hey all! I am just here posting the first two chapters to a novel I have been working on for a while, up to twenty two full chapters, and way too many notebooks full of info! I am posting both together because they were originally one and it seems to read better with both available? Either way I just hope you all enjoy it and would welcome any feedback.

Chapter One:
Log 001. Year 4,165.
He found me a month ago. My father.
On a busy road in the slums, full of other starving people
I tried stealing food from his personal guard. I got cocky and stole bags for others, I overextended and nearly paid the price. He was inside a nearby shop. When he came out, he killed all his guards and swooped me up in his arms. He looked me in the eyes and cried
“My child, sweet child, oh how fate is kind.”
Blood littered the streets, but we were pristine.
I keep this journal now because I’ve seen things here;
Things that need to change.
Mezir De Blancana
A hooded figure walked alone down the remnants of Blancana’s slums, layered cloaks of grey causing him to look like nothing more than a shadow from afar. Bandaged from head to toe without space even for eye holes, his framework lens sticking out on one side, he was sure to be an ominous sight to any looking from the towers above him. Or so he hoped.
In case any lookouts had been particularly blessed with healthy vision, the figure made sure to hide his blades and framework hands floating above smooth, severed wrists beneath his cloak. He didn’t want them to be too prepared for his arrival. All they needed to see was a specter coming from the wreckage of a once-great world.
The bandaged man wanted them all to fear before they felt the wrath of his blades or strength of his will. Too long had they lived in peace, benefiting off of the eradication of his people, comfortable in their grand, new world. Replete with essence and irredeemable ignorance.
A world he continued to find increasingly empty. All around him silence shuddered with the winds of Noctra as they shook the gargantuan Wilders in a gentle dance. Aside from small beasts lurking nearby, and a young woman who crept behind him at the Wilder’s edge, there was no one.
Just outside the massive white walls that cut Blancana off from the Wilders and the rest of Noctra, he stopped to survey the area. According to the leather-bound book in his worn pouch, the slums used to be lively and full; dilapidated without a doubt, but nowhere near as gutted as the street he stood in. An emptiness that had become familiar to him since he had left the Northern mines months before and traveled the length of Noctra. Just as with every city and settlement he had passed on his journey, fragmented and frozen remnants of their former glory, there was no one near the Wilders.
No one on the outer side of the wall.
Gone were the days when every stall was littered with colorful vagrants, vagabonds, or starving citizens; no longer did children prance about with dirty faces and soiled clothes. Merchants had abandoned all structures around and left them to nature’s whim. Nothing was left beyond the imposing city border but sand, tar-like mud, and rubble overgrown with Wilder-vines and Lunamoss, which had begun to glow as nightfall approached. The Grand Councilor had been busy molding the world to his image for the past ten years and that image left no room for the undesirable.
It seemed Lord White feared Noctra’s natural blessings.
Admittedly, the wrapped man would’ve much preferred the coverage of growth and shade in the unending forests to open streets held within ominous confines, though he had become increasingly cozy with discomfort. He found ways around it, ways to use it to his advantage.
The large open streets constructed of recently placed marble, surrounded by glaring granite buildings adorned in gold and crystal terrified him undoubtedly; but it made using his Ta’ Sevin, Venerable Sight, much easier. Even though he was born with the sight and accessed it regularly throughout his youth, there were some times it was nearly impossible to discern one essence from another. Noctra was home to so many.
Out in the Wilders, he could get lost in an entirely different world. In the city, however, his path could not be more concise and clear.
Knowing the sapphire glow from beneath the bandages may reach far in the encroaching darkness, the man pulled his hood lower and saw the White’s Estate, the capital of Blancana, as it truly was. As Noctra intended. His right eye could see the glow from his left for a moment before everything shifted. He was unable to reign in his heart as it bucked wildly at the sight of essence around him. No matter how many times the bandaged man saw it, he was never prepared for the sheer brilliance of it all.
Spewing from immaculate potted plants and waning weeds all the same, from the homes of nobles and the dung of their lowest subjects, essence floated in a humbling display. He could even see it seeping from solid stone, as if life from long ago still lingered, whispering it’s will.
Emerald danced from over the border wall, cascading onto the streets below and swathing them in a dull green mist. Sapphire ambled aimlessly from the ground, entwined with an energetic salmon pink that swirled around the blues and shot skyward. None ever faded, only mixed. Only created.
The bandaged man had to shake his head and breathe deeply before he could focus. See past the beauty and find the reds. Ruby, crimson, scarlet. Signs of sentient life. If one could call a servant of Lord White sentient; the man struggled to see how they could be. Only brainwashed or afflicted puppets could support such a cowardly, bloodied empire. He made note of how similar the towers were to the oaks of the Grand Wilder’s just outside the border, their only true difference being the large symbol of the White on the front of each monstrosity.
There weren’t many, six towers, five Watchers each that he could see actively patrolling, and of those few, he couldn’t see any that had faint lines running from their heads. They had no comms. There was no point in suppressing his smile. This sector was nearly empty aside from the scattered personnel and drunken residents that littered the streets outside nearly any establishment offering ale. He had to assume equipment was dismal and organization weak. The guard evidently didn’t expect many visitors from the southern entrance, it being so close to the thicket of Wilder’s and all.
Too easy.
After some time of standing out in the open surveying this bizarre and primitive form of wilderness, he was finally spotted. A single swirling mass of red essence had begun darting towards a set of stairs that led down, and eventually into, the wall; presumably to the nearest guardhouse, which meant it was time to move.
Those above didn’t seem to be well equipped which was entirely unsurprising. He doubted anyone could make a shot at him from so far above, whether with arrows or essence. A blessing that did not go uncounted as he reached the threshold of the gateless border and relinquished his sight, fading once more into darkness.
Careful to keep his cloak pulled tight enough to hide the myriad of blue, yellow, and green strewn across his many bandages, the man cast a slight illusion with his essence, making it seem as if shadows swirled beneath his clothing and his feet did not touch the ground. In part to protect his identity, should anyone surprise him, though mostly because he knew it would tighten the throats of any guards unfortunate enough to spot him.
Unlikely any would, not before he wanted them to anyway, but it never hurt to be prepared.
His prey would see the shadow of death come upon them before being welcomed into soundless eternity and that pleased him more than he cared to admit. He’d never much relished in violence; before, at least. Something had awoken in him since Lord White had stolen his peaceful life.
Something sinister.
Once Solas had completely fallen and given way to Mother Luna’s cooling light, he stepped into the borders of Blancana’s walls completely, mingling with shadows to hide his movements.
As expected the White’s guard had been alerted to a stranger coming from the WIlder entrance by a Watcher in the tower. They’d come fast and he had only made it past the first street when two of their members appeared from the nearest station, weapons drawn.
The bandaged man stayed low, silent, and still as a corpse when they walked by his position, pressed against the wall of the shop closest to him. They’d responded quicker than he had planned but that was no problem. Those above would still be watching, searching for the phantom stranger they’d seen moments ago. They would witness everything from their perch.
Any survivors’ accounts would spread terror for him. He needed this to reach the heights of Blancana. Straight to Lord White and his Nu’ council.
Each of the passing guards wore a set of light framework armor as blindingly white as the walls of the indulgent shops, and homes, which grew more common further north. Adorned with long pristine capes bordered in gold, leather hung from their shoulders and various other areas.
Straps for quick release should they need to dump their burdens, he assumed.
Their faces remained unencumbered by masks which told the hooded man they were not of very high rank in The White’s army.Still, they could be used to send a message.
On the left was a shorter, slender man with gray sprinkled in his massive beard and long, unkempt hair. Obviously wielding years of experience and fading muscle beneath his shiny armor. His skin seemed aged and excessively pale.
On the right was a stout woman with a shaved head and ageless features, her cheeks burning red with the warmth of ale on her caramel skin. Tattoos aglow with essence lined her skull.
Both held long, curved blades in their hands, ready to fight a ghastly nightmare from the Wilders or, more likely, terrorize a weary traveler. The sun soaked woman chuckled as they passed by, nudging the paler elder man with drunken gusto. Her unused scabbard swung violently against a nearby bin, making the older man jump and blush. Somehow it made him look older.
“I can’t believe they interrupted our cogk…. Cocksuggin’ break, for this!”
Her companion grunted in response, seemingly agreeable, though a stern lip indicated he was more than a bit annoyed with how loudly the woman was expressing her qualms. Nonetheless she carried on.
“Loog..even if this is an old coo- agh, coot or drunken bastard, I am letting off some steam tonight”, her voice rose gradually as she spoke, swinging her blade side to side erratically, to the man’s obvious discomfort.
Her slurs made the statement more than a touch ironic.
“You may want to calm yourself a little there Jen, could be the last of the Nomad waiting for us. Waiting for their revenge. We don’ did a good number on em’ these past few years, damn square is about filled with those rotten suckers. Pa’ always knew they were freeloaders, but never doubted how vicious they were. Could be we are in for some trouble now.” The man slowed and his partner followed.

Chapter Two:
They stayed quiet for a moment, stopping to turn and look at one another as if to peer through the silence around them. Pausing for three heartbeats before they each burst into hideous laughter-
“Or maybe-” she was nearly yelling now, “one of those ‘Venerable’ Ta’-urds come back to haunt us, huh? Boys up top said it was like a specter. Ooh.
While the bandaged man did not find this last jibe to be funny in the slightest, he was pleased his ghostly image had come outright. The stout, obnoxious woman couldn’t help from snorting at herself. The older man chuckled softly and shook his head as he started to walk again.
Such wit and charm between the two, the bandaged man had considered letting them make their way home with a simple message on their tongues; albeit very briefly. They’d obviously been reveling in prospects of another easy night, which made what he had to do that much simpler. That much more gruesome.
Just as necessary.
There would be no fantastic battle to be had. No. Under a mystifying aqua light from the radiant Luna above, mixed with the calming sounds of native whistling flicka-flies, Blancana would bare witness to an astounding massacre. He would not allow his own dread or kind heart to stay his cold, metal hands.
He’d heard enough sneaking alongside them within the shop’s gracious shadows to determine they’d be suitable to deliver his first message. To announce his arrival. They’d taken to calling him The Silent One as of late and he wanted everyone to know he had finally arrived to take down their Grand Councilor White.
Their bloodthirsty God would fall.
The radiant duo appeared experienced enough to rightfully have earned watch on the night shift, unsupervised. Though, common enough to be left without masks. No marks of legends of accolades to decorate their being. Nothing compared to those he had taken down before.
Those who had stood in the way of his horrid vendetta, years in the making.
As they neared the towers and fewer shadows were available due to the canopy of torchlights overhead, he rose and began walking towards the pair with an even, relaxed stride. No sound followed his footfalls. The fact that the lights were created using techniques developed by his own people did not escape him. It gave him a tainted sense of familiarity. Rage welled inside of him like a swollen tick, begging to bust within his wrapped body; still, every step remained silent.
He allowed his cape to slowly fall open in waves of shade, revealing the intricate, colorful design of a Dreadbeast’s outer hide on the inner fabric of his cloak. A vibrant canvas of orange with multiple blue lines and spots of speckled purples and greens. Marks of an alpha mother.
Made only more intense by the bright lights, his visage was entirely clear to those on the towers above who could do nothing to warn their comrades below but shout over fierce winds.
“Gods’ damned specter right… run-”
Comms wouldn’t be given to those stationed in such a rundown area it seemed. They were hardly expected to deal with much. Either that or they weren’t Es-Adept enough to operate them.
He felt blessed no matter the reason. Mother Noctra had given him with her support in those roaring gusts.
The wailing of the Watcher’s traveled down a line of scouts above, down the myriad of stairs about the towers, which eventually elicited an uproar of stomping feet as others began charging down the way. Coming from the station Jen and the older man had left no doubt. Expedient response for soldiers in such a delinquent area but he knew it would not matter. They were ill-prepared for the wrath of the Ta’.
Even with his venerable sight deactivated the bandaged man could tell there were no Es-Ad casters around. Some might be able to make a pretty flare or sting a little, but they were poorly outmatched. Their glows were faint as they approached from behind.
No masked champions or captains in sight.
The two inebriated guards only laughed and jeered in their peers’ direction, assuming some large prank afoot no doubt.
Jen exploded into a scarlet red fervor when the older man dropped his trousers to match the pale light of the Mother Moon above.
“Oi, turn that ole father moon around Desril!” A younger guard approaching with the oncoming group scarcely broke through the fierce winds billowing about. Chuckling despite himself.
Silent One heard the young man’s heart pounding.
They were distractible, unalert, prey and he was a starved hunter ready to pounce. Filled to the brim with a confused vengeance and sullen soul. It would be quite the spectacle for the onlookers above which gave him a sick pleasure. One he struggled to choke down in silence, restraining a cry of primal rage he was sure would fade to laughter and tears before long.
Mother would never have wished for this.
He’d been taught peace and compassion. To always choose life over death, but now was no longer the time for such things. It tormented him greatly, but not near so much as the thought of the White running free. Unhindered by his numerous sins.
The moment they turned to face him the two guards shared in but a fraction of the horror and suffering he had endured at the hands of Grand Councilor White.
That he endured with every fleeting breath.
All for progress. Silent One levitated atop the ground summoning a fierce gale of his own.
His spread cape painted sheer terror across the hairy older man’s face, obviously aware of the pattern and implications it brought. Perhaps he’d heard rumors of the vengeful spirit making its way across the Wilder’s Edge on a guard killing spree, likely he could just know a thing or two about ven-dreadbeast, but the stout ageless Jen looked utterly confused.
A sweat broke out atop her smooth scalp at seeing Dresil freeze for a moment.
“Uh.. this the guy-” she was cut off by her companion who gathered enough wits to shout frantically in her ear as he fumbled with his belt buckle.
“Fucking ready your sword nitwit that’s a-”
Gasps rang out in a pathetic cry nearly as loud as Jen’s shout when the bandaged man seemed to levitate over with immaculate speed and steal the breath from Desril’s very lungs without raising an arm. No prints or tracks followed behind him. Framework hands spinning above his wrists at an alarming speed with fingers around his false palm. He watched the fear build in Dresil’s eyes before slowly tightening the grip of his will around the pale old man’s throat.
His gasps turned to a gargle and the bandaged man barely stifled tears. Blind rage, vile joy, and eternal sorrow all begging for release.
Peace to you.
A jarring crack ended the chance for the guard to ever finish his warning, silencing the old man’s wheezing strains and gurgles for good. Silent One slowly turned the dead man’s body towards Jen, still without moving his arms. Still rotating his hands in a bizarre and unnatural way. They stirred upwind that only made his cloak thrash around more violently as the seconds passed. The bandaged man matched Dresil’s lifeless eyes to the stout woman, let her see what fate had in store for her, and let it fall with a resounding thump.
She could not see his pity or sorrow and for that he was grateful. The woman only saw his supernatural fury.
Jen had sobered enough to obtain some form of understanding, for asinine terror had finally crept upon her face. The terror that lodge pain in his kind heart and fed his ravenous vengeance all the same as he turned to face the shaken woman.
Without a word, her sword clattered to the ground and Jen ran towards the oncoming crowd of her armored peers. Smart choice, he had to admit, but it was too late. A string of sickening gurgles escaped her once vivacious frame mere feet from her comrades with Silent One just behind her, arms extended to his sides while she choked on pure essence. Her own essence. All who saw knew it, for her neck was aglow with stored will. Bulging so far Jen’s neck stuck out further than her armor, veins pressing against shining skin. Blood crept out of her pores, but the skin held.
No one moved.
The woman’s face turned purple before bulging eyes popped in a sickening gush of gore and she was led into unending darkness. It was just as barbarous and gruesome as it was necessary, sending an ill feeling into his guts.
Peace to you. Please.
All those approaching stopped as her body fell face down in a rigid farewell. Swords were drawn but still or trembling. None were shouting above anymore. There was absolute silence, layered in pure dread.
I’m sorry. Silent One waited for the wind to pick up once more.
Twelve stood before the bandaged man, his cloak spread far enough to appear unnatural and phantomlike, consuming the world behind him and exposing his full visage in a swirling frame; a sight that kept all before him motionless. Paralyzed in an impossible terror; staring down a merciless spirit. He was sure a few had even stopped breathing.
It was an intoxicating feeling to hold such power over them but he knew he could not waste time with such small, tainted pleasures. Quickly he began casting down his legs, storing essence at his ankles. No glow revealing his planned cast. Nothing to warn them. A light clattering of metal could be heard as Noctra paused her rapid breathing.
There is no death without purpose.
Willing copious amounts of essence out of his feet he cast a command to bring all the guards to their knees with no words or sign of any sort. Heavy armors forced grunts and pained sounds as they slammed to the ground, dragging their wearers with them. The two nearest him, also a pair of one man and one woman, dropped their weapons as their arms bent backward.
He could see many bled from the impact of their own armor alone but none suffered such severe wounds as those two, though a gruff, scratchy scream from one of the soldiers near the back told the others of something being broken.
No life without pain.
All the guards before him held the glow of essence in their hands, bright white and yellow lights running up their forearms though none moved to cast. Not even to heal themselves. Silent One wondered if they could. He wasn’t willing against their essence at all so he knew it had to be deep-seated fear building within their very mallow that stayed their hands, held their tongues like a vice. A few wore pained expressions of shallow guilt, slowly giving way to steaming rage.
Veterans of The Fracturing, no doubt.
These veterans held the fiercest flames behind their eyes as pain began to give way to infuriated fear. Each soldier held a small amount of burning hate towards him but none looked as primal as those who had partaken in the “war”.
Another convenience for his conscience.
If he let them go now, they would surely attack, so he was required to act. Fear birthed their hate and fear made all creatures rabid if it was strong enough. People especially did not take kindly to being made to feel vulnerable in large groups, he’d come to find.
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2020.09.17 20:30 StarKnight697 The Human Super-Predator (Part III)

Part I can be found here. Part II can be found here.

Historian's Note: Warning: The following passages are excerpts taken from Myths and Legends: What Really Happened in the Humanity War, by Qi'assi den Voor, a former officer in the Irelian military, and supposedly, a first-hand witness to the so-called Humanity War. galactichistory.chy advises readers to take the information with a grain of stellar salt, as we are unable to verify it's veracity.

Myths and Legends: What Really Happened in the Humanity War
My name is Qi'assi den Voor. I am a Fleet Admiral in the Irelian Royal Star Navy. This story, however, begins nearly 40 years ago, when I was a young Captain, serving my first posting - command of the Human Containment Overview Station. Not two years into my career is when the story picks up. The Humans, unaware of their quarantine from the rest of the galaxy, had developed their first experimental FTL prototype, which they dubbed Curiosity Jr. Somehow, in some way, they managed to break the containment field, without even knowing it.
The manned ship had barely broken through when we detected it. Following protocol, I ordered our patrol wings to destroy the vessel. It was simple. The ship was unarmed and defenceless, and two bursts from a pulse cannon ruptured the primitive FTL drive, obliterating the ship, but not before it transmitted it's data back to Sol III. Had I known then what I know now, I would never had ordered that strike, because the Humans knew someone was out there now, and they knew that they were being confined.
Their massive orbital shipyards groaned to life, factories pumping out an endless supply of weapons and war machines. Military Academies trained crews and soldiers. Their best and brightest minds worked together to develop ways to kill faster, more efficiently. We thought we were safe. We thought we had them trapped. We were wrong.
Twenty years after that fateful day, they broke containment again. Only this time, it wasn't a research vessel. These were warships, armed and armoured for business. The humans enacted what they called a blitzkrieg. They breezed through system after system, taking hundreds of planets as the rest of the galaxy dusted off weapons not used in centuries. Things got especially ugly once the humans started meeting serious resistance. It was above Morkal IIIa that the first real battle of the Humanity War was fought.
The Human fleet consisted of three dreadnaughts, each one nearly eight kilometres long. These were accompanied by a bevy of smaller vessels, ranging from carriers to battlecruisers to escort destroyers. The O'notach fleet had no ships of similar size, but outnumbered the humans four to one. They were confident, convinced that superior numbers and technology would carry the day. That arrogance was their downfall. The humans had centuries upon centuries of warfare and tactics to pull from, a storied history filled with tacticians and strategists like Sun Tzu, Napoleon Bonaparte, Alexander the Great, and Julius Ceaser.
Unable to match the weaponry of the O'notach, the humans pulled a trick none had ever expected, or even thought of. They hacked into the O'notach computer mainframe, disabling point-defence. As the O'notach scrambled to revive their dead systems, the human carriers vomited out thousands of breaching pods, launching them across the black, where they slammed into enemy vessels, dumping their occupants into the bowels of the ships. From there, the humans moved quickly to secure essential areas. Reactors, Engineering, Command and Control. Quickly, the humans seized control of the ships. Now they had advanced tech too. It was at this point that we realized that humans had no concept of proportional retribution. We had wronged them, and so we must be eradicated, like a pest.
My first encounter with the human war machine was over Criyn Prime. Their tactics seemed insane, even suicidal to the untrained eye, but to military minds, the strategies were pure, unadulterated genius. The human ships systematically dismantled any fleet sent against them, and there was no clearer demonstration to me than this battle. I remember it as though it was yesterday.
I remember how my fleet fell one by one. I remember how my flagship shuddered under the constant barrage of railgun rounds. I remember the distinctive thuds of breaching pods piercing my hull. I remember the pitched battle through the halls, as all we could was retreat and watch as imposing figures in armoured metal suits and faceless black visors marched forward, unstoppable, impervious to anything we threw at them. Nothing stood in the path of Human Marines. Anybody they found was met with a metal slug through their essential organs. I had retreated to an escape pod with my closest lieutenants, and we watched from a sizable distance as my flagship exploded. As we waited for a rescue ship to find us and pick us up, I came to a realization.
No species is as suited to the artistry of ruin as humanity. There is something in them more suited the mechanics of murder than any other race. How else could they turn that emotional act of killing into clockwork efficiency? How else could they snuff out thousands of lives in seconds without blinking? I wondered what had happened in their history to make them so brutally ruthless?

Had we done this?

The war lasted sixteen years. After their initial rapid strike, the humans began to slow as they met resistance. Still, they pressed on, slow and sure as the water erodes the rock, they took system after system. But even they could not stand against the might of a galaxy. Eventually, I could not tell you when, but the tide began to turn. We started trying to take back territory instead of simply defending what we had. We pushed them back, parsec by parsec, planet by planet. When they realized the could not win, the humans turned, impossibly, more brutal. They began what they called a 'scorched earth policy'. If they could not have it, neither could anybody else.
Four out of every five planets recaptured were burnt-out husks, populations executed, the surface glassed from orbit. They destroyed infrastructure: planets and space stations; hyperlanes and jumpgates. Their fleets fought to the last man, never surrendering. Prisoners of war committed suicide to avoid interrogation. Captains destroyed their own vessels to prevent capture. Some even rammed their ships into ours in a bid to take us out with them.
It took years, but we had pushed them back to their home system, Sol, where we had originally confined them in fear of this very scenario. Our fleet outnumbered them twenty to one - we were taking no chances. They ambushed us in the asteroid belt. The Humans hid ships behind asteroids and attacked our flanks and back after we'd passed. They didn't try to engage the capital ships, only targeting supply vessels, hospital ships, killing our wounded and our non-combatants. They learned from their history: An army marches on it's stomach. Damaged and bleeding, our fleet limped onward, towards the Human capital. Towards Earth. We dared not turn back, lest the Humans regain their footing. When we arrived, we were met by the entirety of the remaining human fleet. Fourteen massive dreadnaughts. Scores of battlecruisers and escort carriers. Innumerable destroyers and corvettes. With one word, the Grand Admiral ordered the attack. The final battle of the Humanity War had begun.

The humans fought fiercely, like devils incarnate, knowing they faced extinction. Railgun rounds split the distance as superheated balls of plasma burned through shields and armour. Lasers lanced across the void, striking targets thousands of kilometres away. Blooms of antimatter explosions ripped craft to shreds, spilling air and bodies into the cold abyss. Fighters chased each other in a deadly dance through the eternal night, dipping and weaving until one made a mistake and met their fate in a ball of flames, fuel tank pierced by depleted uranium rounds, or wing clipped by a guided pulse missile. The survivor would find another partner, and the dance would begin anew. Orbital defence satellites fired again and again, glowing at the seams as they overheated, finding new targets as fast as they destroyed them. Ships shattered, hulls rupturing, vacuum pulling men and women into an endless black lit only by the baptisms of nuclear fire bursting in the distance.
Slowly, so agonizingly slowly, the chaos of the battle began to calm. Only a hundred and fifty-six of our ships remained. One hundred and fifty-six out of four thousand. It was then that the humans unleashed their final weapon, their final shout into the winds of history, their absolute last resort. With an almighty crack that I swear I could hear even through the vacuum of space, their planet exploded with the distinctive energy signature of five hundred thousand kilograms of antimatter annihilating at once.
By the end of it, eight ships limped back to port. It had taken almost three quarters of a century since their discovery, but the human menace was destroyed. All because we had tried to prevent something, that likely wouldn't have happened if we'd simply welcomed them with open arms. To the future generations: A warning, and a history. Don't make our mistake.

Historian's Note: It is unclear if the race referred to as 'Humans' ever really existed, and if the story of the 'Humanity War' is fact or fiction. Few records survived the galaxy-wide upheaval that occurred shortly after when the Humanity War allegedly ended. Technicians were able to recover the supposed coordinates of the Human homeworld of Sol III, dubbed Earth, or Terra to it's supposed inhabitants. Upon reaching the coordinates, however, the expedition discovered only an ancient mass graveyard of shattered hulks and wrecked ships, floating half-way into an asteroid field. Roughly 2/3rds of these ships were identifiable as belonging to one or another of the myriad races of the galaxy. The last third matched no historical records, and have never been seen anywhere else. Their design was completely unique. Are these all that remain of the legendary Human race? I leave that question with you, readers. Make of it what you will.
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